Call Me Maybe (that song stuck in your head)

Am I the only one who still likes this song? I figure it has reached the peak of popularity, because now even my mom knows the words. There is probably no way people are having deep conversations decoding the lyrics, but it is fun and catchy. Here are some of my favorite videos and remixes surrounding the song. Which one(s) do you like best?

Call Me Maybe remixed with 99 Problems by Jay Z (this remix was actually my introduction to the song).

For some reason I can’t embed this video of James Franco and friend lip synching to the song, but it is very random and giggly and you can watch it here.

To me the funniest of all is still the official music video:

Marry Date or Dump: Young Adult Polygamy Edition

The big three of young adult fiction (Harry Potter, Twilight and Hunger Games) all feature two male leads, which makes it a bit tricky to find a third for the marry, date or dump formula. I guess I could have picked a secondary character to round the duos out, but instead I started thinking about what it would be like to marry date and dump both of these male characters from each series at the same time. How would Peeta and Gale split up the household chores? Would Ron’s jealousy of Harry and inferiority complex become an issue in the bedroom? You can see why these polyamorous hypotheticals became so intriguing. What dynamic duos would you choose, and why?

Gale and Peeta, from Hunger Games
          Edward and Jacob, from Twilight
             Harry and Ron, from Harry Potter

Links for a Lazy Sunday

The 50 shades books aren’t going anywhere. They’ve now spent 16 weeks as the top three bestselling books and are officially the fastest growing series of all time, beating out Harry Potter. Huffington Post Books chronicled sex tips from Grey’s bedroom (or playroom), they are pretty scandalous … but so is the book. Everyone is buzzing about who they are going to cast in the movie. Vanity Fair listed the best and worst internet casting choices – whoever cast Mitt Romney as Christian has a pretty twisted mind. Casting speculations also appeared on buzz sugar and people magazine. So far I haven’t been impressed with the options the media has put forward. I do think Angelina Jolie would make an excellent Mrs. Robinson, but the rumor right now is that she will direct the film. Jimmy Fallon even had a 50 Shades Karaoke spot.

Bitch Magazine came up with a list of 100 YA books for the feminist reader (a list 50 Shades would never appear on). There are a lot of my favorites, like Wrinkle in Time and Harriet the Spy, and many more new books I want to check out.

I love orange juice, but this citrus sipper on Joanna Goddard’s Cup of Jo, definitely takes orange juice to a whole new level. I am intrigued.

This also has nothing to do with reading or writing, and it is not even timely, but I saw this video last night and almost fell of the couch I was laughing so hard. How could I not pass it on?

Ash: Not your average Cinderella story

Ash, by Malindo Lo, is certainly the most unique retelling to the Cinderella I’ve come across. Unfortunately, unique is not always a positive attribute. My mother once told me that in Oklahoma, her state of origin, when people see an ugly infant they tell the mother, “well that is some baby.” For me, Ash was certainly “some book”.

I think Wikipedia explains the plot better than I could:

“The novel is about an abused teenage girl who longs for fairies to take her away from her terrible life. A seemly gentle and protective fairy promises to do so as payment, but shortly thereafter the girl falls in love later with an athletic, respected noblewoman and hunter. The girl struggles with finally going to where she had wanted to be or staying and making it work.”

The interesting concept, combined with beautiful prose approaching lyrical poetry, should have been enough to carry this book. For me, it never came together and there were too many problems to enjoy it. I never connected with Ash. I didn’t know what she was feeling, or what she really wanted. I guess that is because she didn’t understand either of those things either, but because of this I never settled into the reading experience.

The book is supposed to be this LGTB must-to-read, but we never see Ash actually fall in love and we can’t understand why. It’s like one day she isn’t in love, and the next day she is. The reaction of the society is also never explained. It seems like same-sex relationships are commonplace, but that is never addressed and in doing so misses a great opportunity to build tension. This lack of tension is pretty consistent throughout the book. Lo only tells, and never shows. And she doesn’t even tell that much! The Cinderella comparison felt forced.

I did like the fact that the story read very much like a legend or fairytale, and took on the idea of fairytales as an important theme with in the novel. Overall, I think the book had tremendous potential but has little to actually offer other than some elegant writing. It’s gotten lots of critical acclaim and prizes though, so maybe I just didn’t get it.

For further reading and reviews (all of which will probably be more positive than mine):

Is this what “you can do anything” meant?

Disclaimer: This post is probably was to wordy and self indulgent. My only defense is that Dawson’s Creek is now on Netflix Instant Play.

My sophomore year I had a professor who said that the crux of coming of age in the 1960’s was finding your “authentic self”. He, along with his generation, thought founding out who he was would be his path to happiness, love, fulfillment etc. It wasn’t so much “be all that you can be” or “you can be anything” as much as “who the hell am I?”.  I guess that’s what reading all those French existentialist authors with the Harvard set will get you.

I think a defining difference in my generation, is that there is less of a focus on who you are as opposed to what you do. This could relate to jobs or status, relationships or adventure. It’s a move from internal to external, but it also signifies a shift from the incontrollable (your soul) to the theoretically controllable (your actions and decisions). Perhaps even people’s self-conceptions have reformations.

A large portion of us grew up hearing “you can do anything”. Parents, teachers and PBS television characters chanted it to us until it became a mantra, a motivator and finally a measure of our success.

Just like my professor wrote in his diary and obsessively talked to his friends about finding himself, I constantly evaluate what I am doing. Wondering if I live up to the ideal of doing anything I put my mind to. Something I think most of my friends would agree is almost impossible if you don’t know what you want to do.

Because when people said that, I always thought of doing something great. Becoming a version of myself that was meaningful and exciting and more. A doctor. A famous actress.  My lackluster examples prove the validity of my last paragraph, I don’t know what I want or what “anything” means to me.

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the phrase “you can do anything” and thinking that instead of meaning you can do something great it could mean you can survive anything. Whether that means a boring job, or feeling overwhelmed or mediocre, or being in a really scary situation. That could be a more powerful message.  There might be more strength in that. Maybe that is what everyone was trying to tell me all along anyways?