I just realized that I did not make a post updating about American Idol and my audition...
My final decision on auditioning for season 8 is a flat-out NO. I have plenty of different activities going on in my life right now, and plenty more coming up, so this year is just not going to be a good time to audition. I am 99.9% sure that I will be trying out in 2009, though, so look for me on TV then (if AI is still around**)!
**There is plenty of speculation about American Idol ratings going down the crapper, figuratively, so season 8 might not exist, much less season 9...
Okay, I have been meaning to post about this movie for MONTHS... And now that my brother Javier has become an avid blogger overnight, I need to catch up!
Across the Universe is a movie that was released on a very small scale in few theatres in the U.S. because of a stupid fight that Sony had with brilliant director Julie Taymor (Frida, Titus). The only thing I knew about this movie when I saw the ridiculously few commercials in theatres was that it was a musical set to songs by The Beatles (color me excited!!). The commercials were so fast-paced and colorful, but I couldn't figure out exactly what the plotline was. I'm kind of glad it wasn't obvious, because it made my viewing experience that much more amazing.
My brothers and I saw AtU in theatres, I believe, on opening weekend, and were each blown away by the entire colorful/beautiful/crazy/hippie ordeal. It was mind-blowing for me, personally, because I didn't know what to expect at any point in time. Even the ending was atypical (I won't ruin it for you), and to be honest, I walked out of the theatre unsure of how I felt about it at first. When I did a little more research about the various aspects of the movie and characters, I began to realize that what had happened to me was kind of like building a friendship with someone, getting to know them very well, and then realizing you're in love with them. :) I fell head over heels in love with AtU!
I believe I saw it in theatres 4 times total, and one of those times was all by myself because no one wanted to go with me... Too bad for them, they missed out!
Here is a plot synopsis from its IMDb page, submitted by a fan:
An original musical film, Across The Universe is a fictional love story set in the 1960s amid the turbulent years of anti-war protest, the struggle for free speech and civil rights, mind exploration and rock and roll. At once gritty, whimsical and highly theatrical, the story moves from high schools and universities in Massachusetts, Princeton and Ohio to the Lower East Side of Manhattan, the Detroit riots, Vietnam and the dockyards of Liverpool. A combination of live action and animation, the film is paired with many songs by The Beatles that defined the time.
To be completely realistic, there are some inconsistencies in plot, but the story and visuals are so amazing that I can't help but ignore the flaws (as one reviewer said, "Flawed movie, but nevertheless breathtaking"). Every time I have seen this movie (I think the count is up to 30 or so now), I have gotten sucked into the story to the point where, if someone talks to me, I almost literally have to "wake up" just to pay attention to them. I find that to be the mark of a great film.
I give AtU an A++.
Look, I'm posting, I'm posting! I've also revamped a few little things here and there, so maybe my blog will be search engine worthy soon... :)
Anyway, I've been thinking (or obsessing) about what to sing when I do finally try out for American Idol. I have a few songs in mind, and I know I'll come up with (and learn) more by the time the audition comes around. For now, if you're curious, here is my very short list of possibilities for my audition.
Hear Me by Kelly Clarkson
Breathe by Faith Hill
New York, New York by Frank Sinatra (originally sung by Liza Minelli)
Blackbird by Evan Rachel Wood (originally written/sung by The Beatles)
Hold Me Tight by Evan Rachel Wood (originally written/sung by The Beatles)
Hi, did ya miss me? I know it's been a long time. Maybe I'll be better about posting on here now that I have a focus. See the following entry to find out what it is...!
I never thought I'd be considering this (EVER), especially after the post I made about Sanjaya last year... But I think I want to try out for American Idol next year.
*collective gasp from my two regular readers* (yeah I know, two is pushin it...)
No, really. I think I want to try out. I'm actually watching this season from the start (for the record, I haven't consistently followed a season from the beginning since Kelly Clarkson). Something stirred inside me, probably because I haven't seriously sang, besides in church, since 2004. I tried out for Gimme the Mike and Gospel Dream a few years ago, but I didn't prepare nearly as much as I should have. I did pretty well with Gimme the Mike, considering how I got overly ambitious with my song and totally choked in the second round. Gospel Dream wasn't very fair, but I won't get into that, and I swear I'm not bitter. Really.
I'm giving myself from right now until the next auditions in Texas (ANYWHERE in Texas) to shape up my voice and breathing, as well as my image. I don't think that's too ambitious.
I figure, hey, I'm not getting any younger. Might as well give this a shot before I get too old to audition... I think I would regret not trying.
So here goes nothin!
I was checking my email this morning when one of my Google Alerts popped up in my inbox. This one is for any time the word "Catholic" is found on a Web site, article, or blog... So imagine my surprise when I see this headline within the email: "Kathy Griffin's Jesus remark cut from Emmy show". My first thought was, "Oh, it probably wasn't as bad as they're making it out to be, and she was probably goofing and apologized afterward anyway."
A direct quote from the article:
"A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus," an exultant Griffin said, holding up her statuette. "Suck it, Jesus. This award is my god now."
I have to ask. Was that really necessary, Griffin? Please, I want to know if you felt like you changed the world with your little bit of blasphemy. The only good thing about this is that they did cut her comment from the telecast of the Emmys.
She wasn't exactly full of remorse backstage either:
"Asked about her speech backstage a short time later, an unrepentant Griffin added, "I hope I offended some people. I didn't want to win the Emmy for nothing.""
You know, I probably wouldn't have such a big problem with this if she were atheist or another religion that doesn't accept Jesus or something, but ay, there's the rub:
"Griffin's reaction to the imbroglio, according to a statement issued by her publicist: "Am I the only Catholic left with a sense of humor?"
So you're Catholic, Kathy? Really? You have got to be the worst ambassador for the Catholic Church ever. Leave it to the rest of us who actually want to be involved in meaningful conversations about our Lord and Savior. You're giving us Catholics a bad reputation, and we have enough to worry about with the whole priest ordeal and ex-communicating people and whatnot. (Ooh, there's an idea... Just joking.)
I'm SO glad that God is a merciful and forgiving God. Otherwise, when Kathy got to the Pearly Gates, He would totally say, "No, you can't come in. You dissed my Son. Suck it, Griffin." She's lucky He's not like that.
Oh goodness. On Tuesday, I was offered a position as a writer/editor for Chevron's writing team...
...which I, of course, accepted!
This is truly amazing, because to get a job at Chevron is already pretty difficult. Somehow, I managed it!
This means I'm set for life. :D Really! I'll be able to save up, pay off debt, pay for my wedding (whenever that is.... ;) heehee), etc... It's really exciting news, so naturally, I thought I would share it with the blog world to which I have become a tad distant. My apologies, everyone!
I'll try to be better about writing, now that it's my job! :)
I thought for a bit on how I wanted to categorize this post. I almost created a new category ("Music... or lack thereof"), specifically for this topic, but decided against it.
American Idol. Sanjaya Malakar. Do those words ring bells to anyone? I haven't been watching this season (in fact, the only season I watched religiously was the first one [go Kelly Clarkson !!!], and then I caught a few episodes of the season in which Taylor Hicks won), but I might as well have been watching with how much I hear about the results.
America has gotten bored with voting for people they actually like on AI, and have turned to voting for people who are less than talented (watch any of the videos of this kid Sanjaya on YouTube, you'll see what I mean) to see if they can trip up the show. Okay, so he's 17. Great. He made it past Simon, Paula, and Randy to Hollywood. Good for him. But this show is about proving that you're better than ANYONE on that show, not proving that you're better than most people your age. It's about finding an American Idol. That's why it's called AMERICAN IDOL.
I think, in this video, a comment that Sanjaya offers is what drills the point home for me:
"My goal this week is to make America see that I actually can sing."
Well, I'm sorry, Sanjaya, but the first two notes you sang in Tony Bennett's classic proved that you CAN'T sing. You may be able to carry a tune okay, but if America were as critical as they have been in the past, you would've been voted off faster than you can say "Karaoke Idol" (courtesy of Simon).
That's the problem: he tries to emulate the artists that originally sing the songs he picks, instead of trying to make the songs his own. About the only way he tries to own the songs is with those ridiculous hairdos (shock factor, oh boy, how exciting *yawn*). Randy seems to like the whole hair thing, but the fact that he says, "You know what? I can't even comment on the vocals anymore or whatever", is testament to the fact that he knows America's going to vote for him anyway, even if "the vocals were a little off since the beginning" (courtesy of Paula).
Wake me up if the next season starts. I already know how this one's going to turn out, but I fear it may be the end of American Idol if this kid wins.
I know I've been absent from the blogosphere lately, and I won't give excuses... but here's a cute joke I got from the Happy Catholic blog:
The day finally arrived. Forrest Gump dies and goes to Heaven. He is at the Pearly Gates, met by St. Peter himself. However, the gates are closed, and Forrest approaches the gatekeeper.
St. Peter said, "Well, Forrest, it is certainly good to see you. We have heard a lot about you I must tell you, though, that the place is filling up fast, and we have been administering an entrance examination for everyone. The test is short, but you have to pass it before you can get into Heaven."
Forrest responds, "It sure is good to be here, St. Peter, sir. But nobody ever told me about any entrance exam. I sure hope that the test ain't too hard. Life was a big enough test as it was."
St. Peter continued, "Yes, I know, Forrest, but the test is only three questions.
First: What two days of the week begin with the letter T?
Second: How many seconds are there in a year?
Third: What is God's first name?"
Forrest leaves to think the questions over. He returns the next day and sees St. Peter, who waves him up, and says, "Now that you have had a chance to think the questions over, tell me your answers"
Forrest replied, "Well, the first one -- which two days in the week begins with the letter "T"? Shucks, that one is easy. That would be Today and Tomorrow."
The Saint's eyes opened wide and he exclaimed, "Forrest, that is not what I was thinking, but you do have a point, and I guess I did not specify, so I will give you credit for that answer.
How about the next one?" asked St. Peter. "How many seconds in a year?
Now that one is harder," replied Forrest, but I thunk and thunk about that, and I guess the only answer can be twelve."
Astounded, St. Peter said, "Twelve? Twelve? Forrest, how in Heaven's name could you come up with twelve seconds in a year?"
Forrest replied, "Shucks, there's got to be twelve: January 2nd, February 2nd, March 2nd... "
"Hold it," interrupts St. Peter. "I see where you are going with this, and I see your point, though that was not quite what I had in mind....but I will have to give you credit for that one, too. Let us go on with the third and final question. Can you tell me God's first name"?
"Sure," Forrest replied, "it's Andy."
"Andy?" exclaimed an exasperated and frustrated St Peter. "Ok, I can understand how you came up with your answers to my first two questions, but just how in the world did you come up with the name Andy as the first name of God?"
"Shucks, that was the easiest one of all, " Forrest replied. "I learnt it from the song, "ANDY WALKS WITH ME, ANDY TALKS WITH ME, ANDY TELLS ME I AM HIS OWN."
St. Peter opened the Pearly Gates, and said: "Run Forrest, run."
This is the best quote ever (taken from The Beatles' wiki page) and epitomizes everything I love about The Beatles:
"[Paul] McCartney once asked [George] Martin what a guitar would sound like if it was played underwater, and was serious about trying it. [John] Lennon also wondered what his vocals would sound like if he was hanging upside down from the ceiling. Clearly their ideas were out-stripping the technology that was available at the time."
They're definitely my most favorite band in the world. So incredibly innovative! So amazingly musical! The PERFECTION that was (and still is, in my mind) The Beatles, lies in this quote.