The exterminator knocked on our door tonight. He was wondering what happened to the bees.
When we came home from running errands this afternoon, the bees were gone, so we assumed the exterminator had been here. I hoped they had just been relocated, not killed, because I’ve read the headlines of articles about how important bees are to our Eco-system and whatnots.
Well apparently the exterminator came, saw the bees, and decided to come back at night when there were fewer people around, and here he was and the bees were GONE.
He said that likely the queen bee was just resting, and the other bees were surrounding her to protect her. That wasn’t a hive, that was a solid mass of bees.
I guess HRH Queen Bee got her lady nap, and they all moved on.
And he would have had to kill them because bee keepers won’t take them as they may be contaminated. So they heard us talking and hit the road.
Also we turned on the sprinklers this morning. Maybe that moved them along.
“As for Captain America, while I don’t think that knowledge of Steve’s backstory is necessary to understand The Avengers, an appreciation of his character definitely helps. Seeing Steve Rogers before his supersoldier transformation helps us understand the reason why he “is” Captain America rather than just a star-spangled man, and the fact that he’s fresh from the ’40s has the twofold influence of making him the ultimate fish-out-of-water character (perhaps even moreso than Thor, who has no real need to fit in with human society) and adding a horrendously depressing aspect to every one of his scenes because everyone he ever knew or loved is dead. The fact that Steve Rogers is even remotely functional in day-to-day life is tantamount to a miracle. Steve Rogers has the same goofily earnest attitude as Clark Kent/Superman, something that’s rather hard to pull off in a movie aimed at the cynical bastards of 2012. It makes me worry that people who haven’t seen the Captain America prequel might misunderstand the charm of the Steve Rogers we see in Avengers. I saw several reviews that commented that Cap seemed clunky or cheesy compared to the rest of the Avengers, and each time I got this ridiculous protective urge to be like, No! Watch his own movie! It’s heartbreaking and inspiring and there’s a musical number where he punches Hitler in front of a chorus line of girls in spangly stars-and-stripes minidresses! Man, I’m Scottish and a pacifist and barely have any patriotic spirit for my own country (unless you include gallows humour about rain and alcoholism), but if you don’t like Captain America then I don’t even know what to do with you. He’s even better now than he was fifty years go because as a person he’s really the exact opposite of the kind of jingoistic sentiment the 1940s propoganda “Captain America” was originally intended to be.”—
I really liked this person’s analysis of Cap. There’s more in the article, and she talks about how the clothes he’s given reveal a lot about his character. He is so not boring. He’s this extremely strong person who has gone through SO MUCH. He has lost EVERYTHING dear to him and has been tossed into a world that he has no idea how to navigate, and what does he do? He fights on, and he does what’s best for others above all else. Also yes on the jingoism thing.
I think it says everything that his weapon is a shield. He’s a protector, not a warrior, above all else.
Great. Just great. I also really, really love [AVENGERS SPOILER SORTA NOT REALLY SURE WHY NOT JUST SEE IT YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN IT ALREADY] how tired Chris Evans plays Cap in those first few scenes. In every scene prior to stopping Loki in Germany, Cap just seems so weary and depressed. He’s punching the crap out of punching bags because he has nothing else to do. He doesn’t seem at all affected by Coulson’s admiration of him; he just wearily wonders if he’s too old-fashioned for the job. It’s not until Nick Fury says “Cap, you’re up” that Cap snaps back into action. When he confronts Loki in Germany, he’s back doing what he knows how to do: protect people. He’s witty, he’s passionate, he’s alive again. And then for the rest of the movie, he’s passionate again. He’s confused and angry, but he’s really alive again. And in that end battle? Saving people in a bank? He gets it. He gets his role and he probably sees that his life isn’t over (if they stop that invasion).
HOW AM I STILL HAVING NEW REVELATIONS ABOUT THIS MOVIE?
man, is it too late in life to start reading comic books? I love reading more reasons to love The Avengers, and learning the meaning behind the nuances I detected, but didn’t really understand at the time.
“When people sing the praises of Atlas Shrugged as a source of lessons for the real world, I always want to tell them to read it again, but this time, remember that they’re not John Galt, they’re Eddie Willers. The guy who could appreciate genius, but didn’t have any of his own — look what happened to him. Unless Paul Ryan can produce a machine of his own invention that produces unlimited electricity from the static in the air, he’s not John Galt, and he shouldn’t try to make policy as if he is.”—Marissa Hendrickson, via Andrew Tobias (via benzado)
“There can never be enough superrich Americans to power a great economy. The annual earnings of people like me are hundreds, if not thousands, of times greater than those of the median American, but we don’t buy hundreds or thousands of times more stuff. My family owns three cars, not 3,000. I buy a few pairs of pants and a few shirts a year, just like most American men. Like everyone else, we go out to eat with friends and family only occasionally. I can’t buy enough of anything to make up for the fact that millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans can’t buy any new clothes or cars or enjoy any meals out. Or to make up for the decreasing consumption of the vast majority of American families that are barely squeaking by, buried by spiraling costs and trapped by stagnant or declining wages. Here’s an incredible fact. If the typical American family still got today the same share of income they earned in 1980, they would earn about 25% more and have an astounding $13,000 more a year. Where would the economy be if that were the case?”—The Inequality Speech That TED Won’t Show You - Restoration Roundtable (via adambozarth)
It is astounding how significantly one idea can shape a society and its policies. Consider this one.
If taxes on the rich go up, job creation will go down.
This idea is an article of faith for Republicans and seldom challenged by Democrats and has shaped much of today’s economic landscape.
But sometimes the ideas that we know to be true are dead wrong. For thousands of years people were sure that earth was at the center of the universe. It’s not, and an astronomer who still believed that it was, would do some lousy astronomy.
In the same way, a policy maker who believed that the rich and businesses are “job creators” and therefore should not be taxed, would make equally bad policy.
I have started or helped start, dozens of businesses and initially hired lots of people. But if no one could have afforded to buy what we had to sell, my businesses would all have failed and all those jobs would have evaporated.
That’s why I can say with confidence that rich people don’t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is a “circle of life” like feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion this virtuous cycle of increasing demand and hiring. In this sense, an ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than a capitalist like me.
Saw The Avengers. Loved The Avengers. Didn’t see any of the other relevant comic book movies (Cap’t America, Iron Man 2, The Hulk, etc.) and never read the comic books, so in seeing The Avengers, I didn’t know any of the complexities or the back-stories or relationships. It’s a testament to Joss (whom I do love with deep profound devotion) that he could make a movie that is wholly enjoyable to the average movie-going audience member who is ignorant to the depth of the story, which also seems to FULLY SATISFY the card-carrying comic book/superhero geek.
Because I follow some improv folks on Tumblr who also happen to be comic book folks, I have had fun reading the expansive reviews of and reactions to The Avengers, because I get to find even MORE reasons to love the movie I saw (and will definitely see again.)
So it was a surprise to even me last night when I got into a debate with a friend of my brother’s about whether or not The Avengers can be called A FILM or just A MOVIE.
I don’t care, really. It doesn’t matter to me, or probably at all.
But I debated, defended, and I think won, the argument that it is A Film. What is the difference, you probably didn’t ask? I personally think that for something to qualify as A Film, it needs only qualify as art that will endure. The Avengers was not a Michael Bay joint with death, explosions, transparent and one dimensional bad-guys and testosterone-jacked heroes you recognize from the first scene. Each relationship was nuanced EVEN to the lay-non-comic-reading-person.
And while yes, as you may argue, that can be attributed to the writing, I think that to take what is on the page and convey it on screen elegantly - to take a traditional heroes’ journey and make it more complex (SO MANY HEROES!) to me, is what makes art. and what makes a movie a film. And a film will stand the test of time.
And I quoted some of the blogs I had read on my Tumblr roll to defend my argument.
And I sank that Battleship because I’m a sneaky and resourceful sis.
We can all agree that the idea of physical perfection has been force-fed down the throats of women all these years via the media (let’s call these media-fed ideals “The Message” for the purpose of this diatribe.) I spent many years of my life turning the pages of magazines - from Seventeen, to Sassy, to Shape to Vogue feeling inadequate and wrong-sized. Just “wrong” in general. Women talk a lot about how these articles teaching “how to reach perfection using our product/routine/diet” have contributed to their self flagellation and torture, low self esteem, etc. It’s easy to see how The Message contributes to eating disorders (I personally believe that eating disorders are an addiction issue that some of us are born with, and the wrong environments add fuel to a fire that, if left alone, may just have remained burning embers.)
But I think the most insidious part of The Message is what it has done to men in our culture; if this ideal is what women are supposed to look like and they are openly trying to looklike, it must be right.
So when shows like Girls (yes, I’m contributing to a conversation a few weeks too late, and probably just saying what’s already been said) shows normal young women (I say “normal” because I identify with soft curves, god-given proportions, imperfect make-up, hair and styling and the women around me do too, so that’s my normal) in various stages of nakedness and exposure, it’s SHOCKING. This doesn’t match The Message I, we - men and women - have been fed all our lives. It makes us, men and women alike, uncomfortable to see an actress who looks LIKE THAT nearly naked and feeling confident and at-ease with herself without apologizing for the fact that she doesn’t match The Message.
We’ve been programmed to apologize for our un-fit, flabby, curvy, bodies as simply works in progress towards the goal, which is of course, a body (at least in my mind) like Cameron Diaz or maybe Madonna. And while some media sources (Oprah…and…) (though, not really, because that woman has yo-yo’d in the same way we all have trying to reach The Message ideal!) have encouraged us to “embrace our curves!” (Oprah doesn’t accept herself as/is!) It hasn’t been enough to counter-act the generations of The Message-fed masses, perpetuating The Message, time and again.
You are either a middle-weight trying to achieve The Message, a light weight having achieved The Message (though your work is never done! You must maintain!) or you’re a heavy-weight, shoving the idea of ACCEPTANCE, NOW! Down everyone’s throat, when most people aren’t listening anyway. (I am well familiar with the dichotomy of my own thinking “I accept myself, damnit! So should you!” and “just gotta get down to my goal weight so I can accept myself.”)
When I see a commercial with a famous female race car driver, known for her skill and agility and breaking the male dominated mold reduced to just being sexy and hot, it’s perpetuating The Message for men AND women; we can accept her because she’s hot. She doesn’t fit one mold, but she does the other, so she’ll pass.
When I see Christina Hendricks or Melissa McCarthy - wildly talented women in two very different areas of the entertainment industry - accepted, loved, admired by some because they aren’t perpetuating The Message, but by others they are accepted even though they aren’t perpetuating The Message. The Message is still enforced, because as exceptions, they are still outsiders, and they’re proving the rule.
I guess the goal then is not to only encourage women to accept their curves, uniqueness and fabulousness without ever bringing a measuring tape or scale into the picture, but to encourage men, especially young men, that there is no ideal; that our bodies and looks aren’t part of the discussion. Beginning, middle and end.