Sunday, August 31, 2008

These Pretzels are Makin' Me Thirsty!

So I was sitting in Sunday School today and I happened to look around and what did I see? Fleece blankets. I've seen this a few times in my home ward, but I didn't know that it had spread to the far eastern borders of the Middle Kingdom. So what's the problem with fleece blankets? Let's examine the evidence:
  • It's August.
  • They are called nylons.
  • Fleece blankets are often loudly patterned. I have seen plaids, dogs, tie-dye and stripes. Thus, they are exceptionally distracting.
  • Who wants to carry a blanket to church anyway? A binder and scriptures are plenty for me.
One expects church buildings to be cold, it is the Mormon way, and one must plan ahead. I guess some people think bringing blankets and hoodies are practical, but don't sweaters and nylons work? That is the whole point of sweaters and nylons after all.

I realize this is kind of a ridiculous thing to complain about, but isn't it kind of like wearing flannel pajama pants to school? And let's not get started on texting or Gameboy playing during church.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

100 Things

So, just because, I'm going to list 100 things about myself. Are there 100 things I could say about myself? I'm going to find out, and if you want to find out really quickly you can scroll to the bottom and see the last number. And don't blame me if halfway through things start to get really random like "I like peanut butter" and "I stayed up too late last night."

(I stole the idea for this post from Drew. Some of my items are in response to things on his list. Just in case you were wondering. I don't know why anyone would be wondering about that.)

1. My favorite color is pink! It wasn't always (it's so girly) but I had two pink-loving roommates in a row. I guess it rubbed off on me. But pink is just so pretty, am I right? Pretty!

2. I finally caved and bought the more expensive Venus razor this past weekend. I'm sad that it's blue and not pink. (EDIT: Just kidding! It really is pink.)

3. My not-so-secret dream job would be to make dioramas for a museum. I get very excited when I see a diorama. I might even flail my arms about.

4. One of my favorite dioramas is at the Bean Museum at BYU. It's at one of the entrances and it's got an iceberg and, I think, a whale.

5. I think of myself as being pretty emotionally lazy as far as negative emotions go. Once I get worked up, I can't maintain it very long because it takes too much effort.

6. One of my favorite belongings is a replica of Sally's Deadly Nightshade jar from Nightmare Before Christmas. My brother got it for me at Disneyland.

7. The smell of corn tortillas makes me gag, but I'm trying to like them.

8. I have always wanted to go to Maine, ever since I read Miss Rumphius in the second grade.

9. Lupins were my favorite flower for a long time, after I read Miss Rumphius in the second grade.

10. I didn't get a cellphone until about a year ago. I still don't feel hugely dependent on it, besides the fact that I store numbers in it, and, you know, it's how I call people.

11. I've never had a boyfriend. Come to think of it, I've never had a second date. Why am I admitting that to the Internet?

12. I love the Oscars, even though what I root for doesn't win often. It's still fun to watch and debate about.

13. I wrote nine missionaries for their whole missions. (No Johns involved)

14. I've spent a lot of time lately trying to decide what I like better: cilantro or basil.

I don't like little dry, woody things in my food.

16. I have a rough relationship with oregano (see #15).

17. I still have all my wisdom teeth, but three have fillings and one had a root canal and a filling. Why didn't they just take them out?

18. I didn't realize my wisdom teeth were, in fact, wisdom teeth until about two years ago. I never noticed when they came in and I always assumed everyone had 4 extra molars.

19. I've never broken a bone or had any really big injury.

20. My favorite kind of ice cream is Dreyer's Blue Ribbon Chocolate Cake. Sadly, they haven't made it for about three years.

21. I play a lot of things close to the vest.

22. My shoe size is 10-11. I call them my hobbit feet, but they are not hairy.

23. My music tastes are all over the map, and I'm not sure what they all have in common. I just like what I like.

24. I don't really like listening to "girl music." (Music performed by women) There are exceptions, but I'd rather listen to a guy singing anytime.

25. I don't care for reality tv, except for competition shows on Bravo. I eat those up like candy.

26. I got glasses in fifth grade. They were green, because that was during my green phase.

27. I had a gerbil named Yakko, who turned out to be a girl. She was lovely.

28. I had a mouse named Wakko, but sadly, he/she did not live long.

29. I spent a lot of money collecting Lion King trading cards. I got almost the whole set, besides some of the special ones, and I still have them.

30. I was a complete slob until I was 14 or so.

31. I make my bed every day.

32. I put too much a lot of thought into organizing my DVDs and books.

33. Sometimes I buy things, like socks, that I don't ever wear because I don't want them to wear out.

34. My jewelry box has Hedwig on it.

35. I am 5'5", making me the shortest person in my family.

36. I am very fond of my hands, hair and feet.

37. I didn't get sick once the last school year but I have had 3 colds this summer.

38. After I saw The Little Mermaid I drew nothing but merpeople for about three years.

39. I like interiors that are beachy (northern beaches). Beaches have a nice aesthetic.

40. My favorite painting is Attachment, by Edwin Henry Landseer. It's probably the first painting I ever saw that blew me away mentally.

41. Some of my absolute favorite artists are Caravaggio, David and Bernini. I love the drama!

42. I have random taste in comedy. I love wit, like Oscar Wilde and Jane Austen. But I also love spoofy or totally absurd comedies like Mystery Men or Dracula: Dead and Loving It.

43. I'm not really into romantic comedies. I would rather watch Die Hard than Sleepless in Seattle.

44. My favorite rom-coms are: While You Were Sleeping, You've Got Mail and Just Like Heaven. I think antagonistic or buddy relationships becoming romantical ones appeal to me more than the "soul mate" idea. I have a lot more thoughts on this but I will save it for another post.

45. I struggle with procrastination.

46. I try to not think about anything I've done before the age of 15-16 because everything before then embarrasses me. Because I was dumb.

47. I've never thought of myself as a sci-fi geek but somehow I wound up loving Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars and I still have a soft spot for Star Trek: the Next Generation.

48. The only pure fantasy books I can read are by Tolkien.

49. When I was younger I used to wake up early on Saturdays and read fairy tales.

50. I loved Disney movies when I was little, but I think I got too good for Disney until a few years ago. Now I love Disney stuff (that love has yet to extend to their live action movies or live action anything).

51. I didn't like Enchanted and I don't understand why other people do, even when they explain it.

52. I didn't go to Disneyland until I was 25, and if it takes another 25 years to go again...well, I just don't know how I'll survive those 25 years.

53. My favorite movie is The Nightmare Before Christmas, followed by The Fifth Element, Edward Scissorhands, Dracula: Dead and Loving It and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

54. I love Lord of the Rings so much that I don't include them on any lists. They are above the lists.

55. I read the first four Harry Potter books twice before I ever even started to really like them.

56. I was a custodian at BYU for four years.

57. I want to work in an art library or a good public library eventually.

58. I drew people out of my head until I was 15 or so. When I was 22 I tried it again and was rubbish at it. I've been trying to improve ever since.

59. I love dressing up in costumes, especially ones that involve corsets.

60. My favorite season is spring, then summer, fall and winter, but I like all of them.

61. I always doodle with a Harry Potter mechanical pencil I bought before my last year at BYU. The design rubbed off long ago, but it's still an HP pencil!

62. I've had my own computer for a long time, and it kind of weirds me out to think of sharing one again.

63. I absolutely, definitely, for certainly must go to England and I absolutely, definitely, for certainly must run about on an English moor.

64. I was scared of thunder in my early years, but I love thunderstorms now, even though they still make me cower a bit.

65. I buy too many DVDs. I know this, but I keep doing it.

66. I took two semesters of Japanese in college, and it was awesome. Sadly, I've forgotten most of it.

67. I have a whole folder of anime music on my computer. I'm listening to it right now.

68. I was big into musicals in my teenage years, which has soured me on them a bit now (see #46). Soured isn't the right word but...yeah.

69. I think Daniel Day-Lewis's character in Last of the Mohicans is the manliest, most attractive man in any movie ever.

70. I love tomatoes and mushrooms. At restaurants, if these ingredients are a prominent element in dish, I will order it.

71. My favorite book is The Silmarillion, but I love a lot of books.

72. I really want pink hair. That has been on my wish list for a long time.

73. I don't play sports, particularly team sports. I especially don't play basketball or baseball, thanks to my fourth grade gym teacher.

74. I played soccer for two seasons or something like that. Sometimes I wish I had kept that up so I could have runner legs now instead of reader legs.

75. I love English literature, especially Dickens, Austen, the Brontes, and Hardy.

76. When I was spotlighted in Relief Society recently, the one thing I wanted everyone to know about me was that I was right about Severus Snape.

77. My favorite HP characters are Harry, Hermione and Lupin. Lockhart was also a favorite for a long time.

78. At BYU, a roommate and I started a "Wall of Men" with all our favorite celebrity guys on it.

79. My favorite celebrity guys (not always based 100% on looks!): Orlando Bloom, Gerard Butler, Hugh Jackman, Gary Oldman and Johnny Depp.

80. I am a mix of girly and non-girly elements: I like pink and flowers and kitties and boys. But I also like action movies, comic books and dogs. Also I have never had a manicure, pedicure or massage. And I know I just implied only guys like dogs, which is totally false.

81. I'm not really into old movies or older music. Most things that I like of either type are newer than 1980.

82. I love American history, pre-1800 in particular, but the Civil War is also fascinating.

83. I really like video games, although I'm not good at most of them.

84. I am perfectly content being alone and entertaining myself.

85. I have never left the United States, but I've been to (or driven through) a lot of the states.

86. My insect nemesis is the camel hopper (real name: camel cricket). I have many thrilling tales about them that involve heavy objects and jumping.

87. I don't really consider myself shallow, but I have a hard time with guys with small hands. It weirds me out.

88. My siblings are my best friends and favorite people. (Oh yeah, my parents are okay. No, just kidding, Dad. You're totally cool. You too, Mom! Except you don't read my blog. What's up with that?)

89. I didn't get my ears pierced until a few years ago. I finally did it after seeing Game of Their Lives at the...Jordan Commons, I believe.

90. Sometimes I like to think I'm a grown up. Then I moo at cows on the side of the road.

91. I enjoy following rules and having things just so.

92. I like classical music, and I recognize a lot of it, but I never remember the names.

93. I think I come off as a snob to a lot to people I don't know, but it's just because I'm intimidated by, um, everyone.

94. I hate doing things wrong. I remember crying in kindergarten because I colored two red stripes next to each other on the American flag.

95. I was in the Illustration program at BYU for a year before jumping ship to Art History. That was the only year I called myself an artist, otherwise I call myself a doodler who draws stuff.

96. I've been known to find animated characters attractive. And by animated I mean animated and not human. (Adult Simba, I'm looking at you!)

97. I wish I cooked more.

98. I have crazy dreams! And I have dreams about everybody, which makes me sound like a stalker.

99. I think I'm pretty cool. Does that make me a real snob?

One day I would like to go to the Oscars.

Whew! Hey, that wasn't so hard. I guess I know myself pretty well. Anybody still awake?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Internet Loves Me

I finally got the Internet at my new apartment and to shows its love and affection, the Internet gave me this:

Dr. Horrible My Little Ponies! Two things I love combined into one! It's amazing! And you can see more pictures here!


(No, I didn't make them, but you knew that already.)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Circle of Life Blogs

This morning I was jolted out of my Nyquil-induced slumber by the sound of two tanks being banged together. Turns out it was the garbage truck (again!), but when I fell back asleep about two seconds later, I had a dream that I blogged about the garbage truck and how loud it was. So, in an effort to fulfill this prophecy:

The garbage truck woke me up last night. It was very loud. So very, very loud.

Also in this dream I blogged about computer games that I liked or had played a lot in the past. One of these games was Hocus Pocus. Man, that game was sweet. I tried to find some screenshots but those were surprisingly hard to come by. What I liked about this game was that it had some cool atmospheric backgrounds. Most of it is just castle walls, but then these castles have huge windows with neat scenery. The scenery would change with the levels, and you start out with big toadstools outside. Later, there's a moonlit forest that looks so neat and that one is my favorite. Just thinking about it makes me say "Ooooo." You can download the first chapter for free although I couldn't get it to work well on XP and I haven't tried with Vista. This game is old school! Another oldie but goldie: Jazz Jackrabbit.

Another game I dream-blogged about was Resident Evil (2, I think). I have fond memories of watching my old roommate play this for a 1/2-1 hour at night while I ate graham crackers. I only ever watch people play it because I am too chicken to play it, but nobody I know plays it anymore, which is sad. What I liked about RE2 was the sort of spookiness and creepiness of it, and it didn't hit you over the head with zombie violence. It was more about tension than bloody limbs, or that's how I remember it at least. Of course there was plenty of blood and dismemberment involved too.

I think those were all the games I blogged about, but other computer games I played a lot were: Mortal Kombat 1&2, Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo, Halloween Harry, Jetpack, Jill of the Jungle and some crazy hospital game where you did brain surgery. These days I don't play computer games too much--just Sims 2 or Diablo II when I get the chance. But I still got some skillz! Also, I should start eating graham crackers again because they are tasty.

EDIT: Oo, I just remembered my post-blogging dream! I was at some kind of ComicCon and I was wearing a Buffy the Vampire Slayer costume. (Which meant I looked like a teenager in the 90's.) Eventually Angel showed up and there may have been some vampire slaying at some point. You see why I love my subconscious?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Origin of Things

Yep, I'm still "packing." Actually, I've been slightly productive in that my lost buttons are resewn and my laundry is kind of almost done. I even got my suitcase out.

Anyway, so there are two names related to me that I felt like explaining. First, you've probably noticed that I post as "Control." That may make you think I'm a control freak, and that is sometimes true, but that's not where the name comes from. It actually comes from a sketch on the show "A Bit of Fry and Laurie." See here:

It's not really funny to watch, exactly, but it's still...funny. What can be more entertaining than the actual clip is trying to have a conversation talking like Tony and Control. So for whatever reason, after watching this show, Ferskner started calling me "Control" and it spread from there. I think it's fun.

Second story: I have this pink laptop named Vera. (I considered Dolores for a moment but there was that nasty Umbridge connection.) So she was pretty much always Vera, as soon as I picked the color. But I have to give credit for the name from a man named Jayne Cobb.

And there you have it. Wasn't that thrilling? Okay, back to packing and productivity.

Whole Lotta Nothing

Like the title says, I don't really have anything to say today. I'm leaving for Indiana tomorrow (where have the weeks gone??), and I'm supposed to be packing right now. Instead I am just going to blog about random thoughts and listen to Disney music.

All I've managed to do so far is go through a box of pictures. I now realize that I have taken many, many, many useless and pointless pictures over the years. I wish I could throw them away without feeling wasteful. I have decided today that that is one of the best things ever about digital cameras--if you take a bad picture or later, realize a picture was stupid, you can just delete it. No fuss, no muss. No clogging up landfills with ugly pictures.

Speaking of pictures, I was at the outlet mall yesterday when my sister and I stumbled across this.

We couldn't stop laughing and took several pictures with "Nessie." The funnyness of this may not be obvious to all of you, but for you lucky souls who get it...isn't it awesome?! I feel validated.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Thomas Hardy Likes the Gym

That title is my attempt to bring together the two completely different topics in this post. In the end it made about as much sense as putting two names together, like, say, Cassiesmeralda, but I'm going with it.

A few days ago I finished reading Thomas Hardy's Far From the Madding Crowd. The first half was more interesting to me, and in the end I didn't like it as much as Mayor of Casterbridge or Tess of the D'Urbervilles. Actually most of the time I was trying to figure out what the madding crowd was. I'm still not sure the title is the best he could have done, but whatever, it's just the title. And of course the whole thing was written well, with good characters and a surprisingly happy ending (mostly...). I'm not sure when I will pick up my next Hardy novel, but that will give me time to decide between Jude the Obscure and Return of the Native.

When I'm reading books I try to keep an eye out for good sentences or paragraphs. Sometimes I like something because an idea is well expressed, and sometimes I just like them because the words work so well together. I found a few of these in Madding Crowd but this one from chapter 15 was my favorite:

"The maltster's lack of teeth appeared not to sensibly diminish his power as a mill. He had been without them for so many years that toothlessness was felt less to be a defect than hard gums an acquisition. Indeed, he seemed to approach the grave as a hyperbolic curve approaches a straight line--less directly as he got nearer, till it was doubtful if he would ever reach it all."

So now for the gym part. My history with exercise is generally pretty sketchy. I didn't start running regularly until late 2005, and I got up to doing three miles. Then I graduated and went home and went to the gym instead of running around south Provo. Then I went to grad school and my exercise was basically walking to and from the bus stop. But! This week I have gone back to the gym and yesterday I did three miles on the elliptical machine in 40 minutes, and today I did the same in 37 minutes. Progress!

Hopefully when I get back to Indiana I will start running outside again, which is sooo much easier than running a treadmill. Ferskner, you are in charge of informing me of a good route since you know the neighborhood.

OK, now I'm going to go eat some pizza and undo my work at the gym.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Breaking Dawn

I'm sorry, I just can't hold my Breaking Dawn thoughts in anymore. So, if you haven't read the book for whatever reason, just go look at one of these websites instead: Kittenwar, Cats in Sinks or Mad Shark.

Some of you are probably still here, hoping to get spoilers. Or, I should say, one of you is. And so at this point I would like to remind you of a certain bargain we made and if you read the spoilers I will have to post about That Thing.

And here is the final deterrent. ZARDOZ!

I know what you're thinking and YES, that is Sean Connery. Sometimes I get the title mixed up with Xanadu, but I'm pretty sure there's no roller skating in Zardoz. There is, however, a pair of thigh-high black boots and what can only be called red underwear. I decided to spare you all from that.

And now, let us discuss Breaking Dawn.

Breaking Dawn Revelation #1: Vampires really like sex.

Obviously there has been a lot of talk about the *ahem* content (Esme's isle, anyone?). I expected a honeymoon scene, and until the pillow biting, I think it was handled pretty well. The bits that came later during their vampire honeymoon, if you will, were overkill for me. I wouldn't have thought twice about it if Stephenie Meyer weren't LDS and vocal about it, though. The fact that she is, apparently, an active member whose religion comes up in interviews and on her website should have made her think twice. I know Bella and Edward aren't Mormon, but that doesn't mean Meyer needs to make us aware of just how much sex they are having.

As for younger girls reading it, technically Twilight is a young adult book and they shouldn't be reading them anyway. So on the one hand, I don't think authors should feel a need to make their books suitable for all ages. But on the other hand, when you know that lot of young girls are reading them, it wouldn't hurt to keep it in mind. And since we didn't need or want to know about Emmett and Rosalie breaking houses down with their passion anyway, sex didn't need to come up at all after the honeymoon. Final note: Parents! Read some book reviews and give your kids Series of Unfortunate Events. They are better and more age-appropriate.

Breaking Dawn
Revelation #2: Dead people can have babies.

Bella and Edward have a honeymoon baby. I'll admit that this twist kept me up reading until 5 AM so it was intriguing to me. But that was partly because I thought it was some kind of horrible vampire spawn that would somehow turn into the book's villain (too much X-Files?). The truth was so much more ordinary. It's a girl! And she's perfect! Just enough vampire to keep her young and beautiful, just enough human to give her a rosy complexion! AND she has magical powers. Of course, who wants to read a book where the main characters have to deal with a teething child that throws tantrums and watches Teletubbies?

Did I mention her name is Renesmee? Renesmee. Renee+Esme. How about...Reme? Esne? Jill? Also I would to add that Meyer's three boys have the same names as three brothers that lived next door to us in California. Just saying.

Breaking Dawn Revelation #3: Nobody cares about Bella and Edward

Bella and Edward get married in the first few chapters and POOF! all the dramatic teen relationship angst that kept me glued to Twilight is gone. The love triangle with Jacob is a moot point, and all the fun of Bella and Edward being together is gone. They're like an old married couple. If this were a TV show, I would the wedding the moment BD jumped the shark. Since it's a book, I will say that is when it bit the pillow.

And while we're here, was it just me or was Edward hardly even in this book? It seemed like he did a lot of standing around looking concerned.

Breaking Dawn Revelation #3: There is such a thing as "Too Perfect"

OK, now we're getting to my real problem with the book: lack of conflict. As in, there was none. Meyer has said she likes happy endings, but there is a big difference between a happy ending and a satisfying ending. Sure, it all turned out great, but there was no cost, no sacrifice and not even much work. Everything happened so easily! Bella didn't have to give up anything to get everything she wanted, and neither did anyone else. If anything, they gave up nothing and got even more in return.

All of the conflicts that had been built up in the first three books--the love triangle, the wedding issue, the Bella-being-a-vampire issue, the Volturi, the soul issue--were not even issues at all. Or if they came up at all, they were fixed without a problem. Everything happened exactly like you'd think, except with no trials on the way.

And you know what happens when there's no conflict? Things get really boring. Kind of like the second half of this book. This book should have been all about tying up threads and weaving all the stories together to make a good ending to the story. Instead BD didn't address previous storylines and brought in completely new ones without resolving them either. Examples: vampires can have babies? Jasper knows a seedy lawyer in Seattle? The werewolves are shapeshifters? Leah is not such a pill after all? Jazz?

Breaking Dawn Revelation #5: I really kind of hated this book

I don't hate books or things in general very often. I can't even think of anything to give examples. Anyway, the more I think about BD, the more I despise it. I was going to read The Host next but I can't even look at it. Thinking about reading the other books in the series repulses me. It wasn't even enjoyably bad! It was just bad! It wasn't consistent or cohesive. It wasn't an ending. Eclipse had a better ending.
Did I mention that there's not really a plot? There's just stuff that happens, and a long conversation at the end where something exciting should be.

It's about at this point where I start banging my head on the table and throwing dirty looks at my copy of the book.

I guess I shouldn't get so worked up. After all, it's just a book. And it's just a series that I only liked halfheartedly besides Jacob! in the first place. Ohhhhh I haven't even started on the imprinting! Gahhhhhhh, imprinting! Seriously, the only way I can describe my feelings on imprinting is by angry exclamations. I don't understand it, I don't see why it was necessary at all, I think it's stupid, and it makes me angry. And it makes me so angry that it happened to Jacob. I knew it would happen, and I knew it would upset me and by golly, it did. Wouldn't it have been so much more satisfying if Jacob had had to work to overcome his feelings? Run off into the wilderness and dealt with it instead of seeing a baby and having all his Bella love disappear? It's not like he had anything to do the rest of the book anyway.

I guess you could say that if Jacob broke my brain, Breaking Dawn healed it. Now give me Harry Potter.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Everybody Loves Ponies!

In today's edition of The Blog, let me first take you back to a lovely place I call My Childhood. This place was populated with small versions of cooking utensils, The Last Unicorn, the library and a good smattering of G.I. Joes. In addition to those wonderful things, there were also My Little Ponies. I still have mine, safe in a box, and I still remember how traumatizing it was when my sister's friends put makeup on poor Heart Throb.

Some of you may have noticed that My Little Pony has come back, looking a little more slender of course. They're still cute but it's hard to beat good old Cotton Candy. (Incidentally, my sister still blames me for the fact that our Cotton Candy is tail-less.)
Cute, right? The following image is not cute. In fact, if you are prone to fainting spells or are shocked easily, you may want to avoid it.
That is not a My Little Pony. That is a "Struts" fashion pony (or Strutz, I've seen both). Apparently Playmates came up with the following equation: Girls like horses. Girls like fashion. Thus, girls like fashionista horses. I think the problems with these Struts are pretty obvious so I'm not going to go into it. I will say that my favorite snarky nickname for them is "Whorses."

And does anyone remember those weird looking Cabbage Patch ponies with the hair you could "style"? No?

So, this post may leave you feeling a little hopeless about the current state of Pony entertainment. Don't worry--I have a few remedies.

Dream Valley
: This site has the whole history of My Little Ponies, complete with all the names, pictures and collections through the years. This is how I discovered that my favorite pony, Bowtie, is actually called Ribbon.

Horseland: If you're like me, you probably don't travel with your MLP. But look! Now you can have virtual ponies! They may not be as candy-colored as MLP, but they still have pretty manes and look like real horses.

The Baby Unicorn, by Jean and Claude Marzollo, illustrated by R.J. Blake: My sister and I read this book countless times and we still argue about who actually owns the book (I do!). Unicorns! Dragons! And...that's about it. If you can find a copy, read it. Or come to my house and I will let you read it.

So there you have it--the past and current state of Pony entertainment. And here you were thinking I only blog about the important things.

(Also, I just want you all to know that in my younger days, I had super blonde hair. And it was awesome.)

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Something Serious

I have been thinking about something for the last 24 hours or so, and I'm feeling the need to address it. Blogs are, after all, the place to talk about deep, meaningful personal issues, am I right? And as someone that is consumed by deep, meaningful personal issues*, it was inevitable that this topic would come up eventually.

In case you haven't guessed, I'm talking about Twilight. Maybe it's not so deep and meaningful, but let me tell a quick anecdote and explain why I'm bothering to write about it. When I was in first grade, I had a book about whales (I loved whales...I still love whales. Whales!) and I knew from my book that killer whales are really Orca whales. One day a boy was calling them killer whales and, being the insufferable know-it-all that I am, I corrected him. He didn't believe me. I corrected him again. It went back and forth, and neither of us ever budged. But I was right! So...I'm going to get into my thoughts on Twilight because I don't want anyone to have the wrong impression or have the wrong idea of what I think about it. I don't like being misinterpreted and I really don't like knowing that I'm giving off the wrong impression and being misinterpreted. OK. Let's clear this up.

We'll start at the beginning. I read a translator's brief review of it, very soon after the first book came out. He called it "vicarious" and that stuck in my head. So I didn't read it, until October 2006 (Saturday of General Conference, to be precise). I read Twilight that day, and I read New Moon a week later or something. And I read Eclipse when it came out. I liked them well enough--they're entertaining, they suck you in and it's easy to get totally absorbed while you're reading them. But! I also think they're seriously flawed--the writing, the structure, the plots, the characters. I could go on for a very long time about all my scruples over these books, but I ignored them or laughed about it because whatever, they're fun.

I reread Twilight last September after a friend gave it to me when I moved to Indiana. It was still fun (I do really enjoy the first half of Twilight because it's all new and for some reason, I really like reading about Bella doing homework and making dinner for Charlie). Life went March of this year a friend read New Moon and I decided to read that one again. And happened.

Halfway through New Moon...Jacob broke my brain. I was reading it and suddenly I thought "This book is awesome!" It was as flawed as ever, and I knew it but for some reason I didn't care and was suddenly all caught up in the teen angst of it all. And it was all Jacob's fault. And basically the rest is history. I read Eclipse. And then I read all of them again. And then I started checking MTV every week for Twilight Tuesday. And then, of course, the Twilarts started showing up.

So, basically, the point is this: I enjoy the Twilight books, I do. Do I think they're really good? No. Do I think they deserve all the fanfare and rabid fans? No. Do I think the fact that Stephenie Meyer is Mormon makes them appropriate for all ages? No. And if I had daughters, I would think very very carefully about them reading the books because I take issue with a lot of plot elements. Also, I hate imprinting with all my ability to hate. But you know, I like eating good food but sometimes you'll still catch me buying a three pound bag of gummi bears. And dang it, I love the Jacob/Bella kiss at the end of Eclipse. That is a bag of killer gummi bears right there.

So on Friday night I got with some buddies and we were excited for Breaking Dawn. I like being excited, and I like being excited about the same thing with groups of people.

I have a lot of thoughts about Breaking Dawn, but I can't post them yet because certain readers haven't read it yet. And even though she they would like to know all the details, I'm no spoiler! Anyway. I just wanted to clear the air.

Oh, I will say this about reading Breaking Dawn--the whole time I was thinking "I want to read Deathly Hallows." (One day I will have to blog about how I hate hearing Harry Potter and Twilight compared.) Speaking of Harry, one day I will have to tell about my long road to Harry Potter love because it was actually a pretty similar process to Twilight. And Star Wars this a pattern? Hmm.

And if any of you had the fortitude to read all of these, well...I will give you something. I don't know what, but um, you can have it.