Saturday, January 31, 2009


Reality Bites explored the lives of four generation-x college graduates looking for work and love in Houston, Texas. The main character (played by Winona Ryder) is an aspiring film-maker who documents their lives, hoping to make a film from the footage. The film was released in early 1994, when i was 25 years old.

I'm simply not sure whether I am remembering this correctly or not, so perhaps my fellow gen-xers can help me out. I remember watching this movie and thinking OH MY GOD, SOMEBODY FINALLY GETS ME! THIS IS MY LIFE! THIS IS SO GREAT! ETHAN HAWKE IS SO AMAZING AND DISTANT AND COOL AND MISUNDERSTOOD, I WANT TO DATE SOMEONE JUST LIKE HIM! WINONA RYDER IS SO BORED AND SMART AND SARCASTIC AND UNDERVALUED - I'M SURE I'M JUST LIKE HER! I'm so GLAD they got back together at the end! That's JUST how it works out in REAL LIFE, when the boy FINALLY realizes he screwed up, and he comes back changed, loving and PERFECT and after that they stay together FOREVER!

I didn't watch it again for years, but I carried around this memory of a movie that had encapsulated my life at that time MOST perfectly. I'd refer to it from time to time fondly, reminiscing about the plot as though I was reminiscing about my own memories.

Last night I watched this film again, for the first time in fifteen years (in two weeks, it will be the fifteenth anniversary of its release).

OH MY FREAKING GOD. The SHALLOWNESS of the characters! The INSIPIDNESS of their lives! The TRANSPARENCE of Ethan Hawke's ridiculous detached facade! The HORROR of Winona Ryder's acting! The TRITENESS and PREDICTABILITY and CERTAINTY OF RELATIONSHIP DOOM of the final reunion love scene!

The only saving grace was Janeane Garofalo. Her character was at least SOMEWHAT three-dimensional, and she was, as always, brilliant. Why didn't I want to be HER??

I'm not certain what upsets me more.. the fact that I was so FREAKING naive at 25 (was that SERIOUSLY my life???) .. or the fact that I'm so UNREMITTINGLY cynical at 40.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

You Are

You are the knot that sits between my shoulders
... the pea under my matress when I sleep
... the forgotten pin in my shirt
... the tear in my pants, the tangle in my hair
... the car alarm going off at 3am outside my window
... the song I can't get out of my head
... the lyric I can't remember
... the weed in my bed of roses
... the splinter in my finger
... the smell of gas coming from my furnace
... the streetcar I missed when I was already late for work
... the one pint too many
... the part of my brain incapable of rational thought
... the diet that made me gain weight
... the joke I told that no one got
... the weird smell I can't find the source of
... the promotion I was passed over for
... the tattoo I never got and the one I did
... the crack in my window that lets in the cold and rain
... the adrenaline rush I get when I do something bad
... the constant ringing in my ears
... the party I threw that no one showed up for
... the white lint on my black cashmere sweater
You are the nagging feeling that I have forgotten something.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Short List

I have never:

  • made my own wine
  • been a bridesmaid
  • been a bride
  • dated someone for their money
  • gotten over it

I have:

  • drank homemade wine
  • been a last minute maid of honour
  • proposed marriage
  • dated someone for their looks
  • gotten over it

Thursday, January 8, 2009

She Works Hard For It

Teeny tiny ranty.

Okay, what I do to make money to pay for the things that don't earn me money but bring me joy isn't rocket science, it's barely brain surgery but it's not without it's difficulties - have you ever had to be nice to everyone you come in contact with for 8 hours straight? Try it. Not so easy, is it?
Do me a favour, the next time you're speaking with a customer service rep (CSR as those of us in the biz call us in the biz) make the assumption that they know:
a) how to do their job
b) how to spell
c) how to count
d) if they don't know how to do a, b or c they will transfer you to someone who does

I know how to do my job. I was hired to do it and as long as I keep doing it right I'll keep getting paid. I like money so I'm going to keep doing my job right. I'm rather Pavlovian that way. So unless you sign my paycheque, please, PLEASE do me a favour and keep your job pointers to yourself.

Thank you.