Conversation just now with my cubicle neighbor:
J: So this friend of mine found a stray cat the other day and fed it. And it kept coming back. Long story short, my friend has a new cat.
J: You would totally love this guy, too. He was a high school and culinary school dropout but he's read more books than anyone I know. His apartment's got books everywhere. Guess what he named his cat.
Me: Something literary?
J: Yeah. It's some obscure poet. Or maybe not a poet. Someone obscure.
Me [thinking of possible obscure maybe-not-poets]: Um, dunno. What?
J: Lord Byron.
Me: YOUR FRIEND NAMED HIS CAT LORD BYRON?
Half the office: Turns around.
Me: Lord Byron is one of the most famous poets ever.
J: Oh. Cool.
* * *
Operation: Resensitize chugs along.
I listened to BBC World News on WNYE on the way to work again today, and was struck as always by how much more aware the rest of the world is about -- well, the rest of the world, and how intelligent and incisive the interviews and commentary are, and how much time the program allows for measured discussion of the issues on hand. And I mean "measured" in two senses: balanced, usually with one voice in support of and another against a topic, such as last week's talk about the benefits and detriments of supplying food aid directly to starving nations as opposed to sending money, or this morning's conversation about the announcement that the Nobel Peace Prize has gone to an agency that may or may not be setting the stage for a nuclear disaster; and calm, with an articulate anchor (do they call them anchors in England?) or reporter taking his or her time to explain the situation, its context, its history and possible consequences. I swear a person will learn more "macro news," and understand it better, from an hour of BBC World than from 24 hours of CNN or CBS News. I wonder how NPR's or PRI's straight-news programs compare.
In a wholly different kind of news, an interesting photo graced the Yahoo! home page in the Buzz Log box this morning. ( The photo. )
...which is doubly remarkable because the related searches didn't mention homosexuality, only the stars themselves -- and it got me wondering whether there are closet slashers working behind the scenes. Surely anyone who knows stuff about either actor has seen this shot before (it's dated 2003 from WireImage), but I hadn't, and found it especially intriguing after having read an essay off metafandom last week by thevixenne and rotpunkt on why women enjoy slash, focusing on the Viggo Mortensen/Sean Bean pairing and citing the former's penchant for kissing his male co-stars on the lips and posing with them in suggestive positions. For those of you who are curious: "You're asking for it, Mortensen..."
(Oddly enough, girlyboy Bloom was in my dream last night, which again involved Lestat [I don't understand it either]; this time we went to see the real show -- row A 101, but shortly into the performance we realized the seats were in the second orchestra section, not the first -- and the cast included Mr. Bloom and an actor named Paul A---* who could have stood in for Robert Sean Leonard in any of his Pert Plus-and-glasses roles. The entire audience cheered when one of the [male] vampires started kissing another [male] vampire. Also the few rows to our left were kept empty for the actors & actresses to use when they weren't onstage, and various members of the audience kept coming over to talk to them. That's as close to Orlando Bloom as I ever need to be.
*I recognized his name at the time, as well as when I woke up, and couldn't place him, and discovered when I looked him up that he's not an actor but one of our clients. This is what things have come to.)
Saw my mother and her S.O. last night. No boat this time: We played a few games of pool in their poor decrepit Moose Club (soon to be fixed up, he promises), during which I found out exactly how much I've forgotten since taking that billiards P.E. class in college and playing at Jillian's every few weeks, but redeemed myself when Wheel of Fortune came on the bar TV.
The S.O. is growing on me. Maybe he was drunk and depressed the first few times I met him -- well, no question about the drunk --
"A last word, Mr. Darnay: you think I am drunk?"
"I think you have been drinking, Mr. Carton."
"Think? You know I have been drinking."
"Since I must say so, I know it."
-- which made him rather boring, hence my sister's ready adoption of the nickname Captain Cardboard -- or maybe I've gotten used to his different brand of sarcasm, or maybe we just needed time to warm to each other, but these last few months he's been funny and quietly generous and eager to offer help and advice where possible, which makes it hard to continue disliking him. He still makes fun of me for things like not always wanting to drink when we go out, though, which I find more annoying than endearing.
This week's Media In Review:
In closing, it's nice to have a television in the kitchen here so I can sneak bits of DS9 during lunch when everyone else isn't watching Jerry Springer or Mad About You. Am still such a dork.