I don't normally do tributes, obituaries, or anything of the sort, but I have to say, the recent death of Heath Ledger has really rocked my world. I liked Heath when I saw him in the film, 10 Things I Hate About You back in the late 90's. I liked him so much in fact, I said to husband, "Okay, here's one of my predictions ... this kid's going to be big, really big, Oscar-nominated big." Then I proceeded to write it in a journal where I keep all my predictions. (the one of Leonardo Dicaprio after seeing him in "Growing Pains" and Jim Carrey after seeing him do standup ... I haven't been wrong yet)
He was cute to me, in a strange way. Strange face shape, odd hair, but I knew Heath Ledger had real talent and I waited for another movie, watched them as they came out, enjoying each and being entertained ... until I went all by myself to the cinema to see a little film called "Brokeback Mountain." I even wrote about it in my blog when it happened.
People in my family picked at me, yet gays all over the world felt vindicated while homophobes made bad jokes. I was glad I saw the film because I actually loved it. Loved it enough to buy it, which for someone as thrifty as myself should say something.
I guess I feel like not only has a young life been cut short, but a great future. I feel Heath would have won an Oscar instead of just being nominated if time had went on and he continued to act. I find it strange I predicted he would only be nominated instead of actually winning one.
I believe the world would have been lucky to see and have more of his work and I'm sad his family, and the world, and even the acting community is without what I feel to be a truly bright star.
I'm proud of Daniel Day-Lewis for pointing this out at the SAG awards and even more proud that he shut Oprah up during her silly Oscar bullshit to call attention to what was more important, Heath's death. If only she had actually cared instead of pretended to care. Still, Daniels' outpouring was heartwarming to see instead of TMZ and ET and a whole bunch of other initials bent on ruining lives and journalism trying to uncover some story at anyone's expense.
There is said to be two more films of Heath's still coming out. I, of course, look forward to them, but more than that, I wish he were still here and there was still more to come. My own selfishness. I just believe truly great actors are few and far between, and Heath was definitely one of them. One of the best.
The temperature is 10 degrees outside, of course, the wind chill is below zero. I'm kind of hating the winter this year and can't wait to be done with it, but today isn't so bad. The kids don't have school, so I don't have to go out in it at the crack of dawn to drive them to school. That's the upside.
The downside is I also didn't hop on my treadmill to get in a good workout. I'll use "the kids are home" as an excuse. For some reason, when it comes to exercise, I can find a million excuses not to do it. And yeah, I dislike that about myself.
I did quit smoking almost 8 months ago. I do have some sticktuitiveness. Some. Very little.
This brings me to my question for all of you -- Are there any healthy or positive habits you have created for yourself recently? Are there any you want to have, but somehow make excuses not to follow through? Any advice for me?
And as a side note, but an important one, hearing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speak usually gives me a lump in my throat, sometimes I'll even sob. I've always felt that way about him, since I was a child living in a racist home. I am happy he has his own day and not just because it gives me the opportunity to not go out in the cold. Seriously though, I can't help but think ... now the face of Civil Rights has Al Sharpton? Something is just so not right about that.
P.S. Congratulations to Eli Manning and the Giants! I picked you to win after my beloved Colts lost, but last night's win was one hell of a game! May they forge ahead to CRUSH the Patriots. Fingers crossed.
An unlikely combination you say? Perhaps, but not for me.
For years, I've been under the decorating thumb of my surprisingly manly husband. I am not stretching the truth when I say this man can decorate! Never mind the gruffness, the football watching, truck fixing, the mechanical mind, the wood working, t-shirt wearing rock and roll dude, and just focus on the "queer eye." He's a genius with placement and even does custom-framing. This could be why since I was 18 years old and freshly married, I've allowed my husband to pick out most everything for the house -- antiques, nautical oil paintings, old sailor's maps, etc.
Then I said to myself, "Come on, Self, don't you deserve to like anything you look at during the day?" This is when I bought my first 3 sock monkeys and placed them on a high shelf in my bedroom surrounded by my beloved classic novels. Every time I looked up, I smiled, so a purchase of a black and white sock monkey print (again for the bedroom) soon followed. I loved it even more and decided to integrate the sock monkey theme into more rooms.
I made pillows for the living room (Chinese upscale fabric on one side to please husband and silly sock monkeys on the other for me.) A bathing sock monkey on a ceramic tile for the bathroom? Why not? Just little things like that, but then there came the kitchen dilemma.
In the kitchen, there's roosters and chickens (but not too much). While I do think they're beautiful, there was no place to put a sock monkey and not make it look odd. Heck, even my good china is transfer ware rooster dishes, but what about sock monkeys? How could I fit that into my old-fashioned decor? How could I put the two together? A few weeks went by and while searching for my answer on the Internet, I came across this painting:
Done by an artist who calls herself Breezeb, I fell in love with the silly thing and also bought another of a spotted chicken and cowboy sock monkey so I'd have a "set." I matted them, framed them in beautiful oak, and wow, they looked like expensive whimsical art when I finished. They set off my one empty kitchen wall completely. Much to my amazement, my husband thought they were "cute" and didn't complain at all. Even the kids liked it.
My only problem was accessories. Sure, I have a rooster rug in the kitchen and two ceramic roosters sitting atop a high shelf, but I wanted more monkey. So, being a bit crafty and good with my sewing machine, I took the above print, raided my scrap fabric, created a template, cut out a pattern, and diligently quilted it using the embroidery stitch onto two green hand towels. Now they are proudly displayed on my oven's handle, but here's one to show you:
Now, for the usual question: I find I sew, knit, and create because I can make things that bring me joy I wouldn't necessarily want to shell out big bucks for someone else to do. What is something you create or do that brings you joy?
UPDATE: I'm putting the update before the post so if anyone who hasn't read it is confused, see below. The girl is now saying she gave the sweatshirt back to my son. After saying she loved it, would pay for it, and even slept in it, last night she told him, "Oh, I just remembered, I gave it back to you." When my son became upset and pointed out she had e-mailed him saying she had it, wore it to bed, didn't want to give it back etc., she freaked out and started saying too bad for him, too bad for his mom, she doesn't have it. Needless to say, he's VERY surprised at this turn of events. In his 13-year old words, "I never knew she was .... well, psycho." So, lesson learned on letting girls run all over him, I hope, and karma should handle the rest. Thanks again for all the advice. It is always appreciated.
Once in a while, I use this blog to ask a question related to my own personal life and sadly, this is one of those times. I'm just going to dig right in ....
My son is 13 and a pushover. He's non-confrontational and kind of a drifter, a loner. He hangs out with a couple of friends, but not regularly (about every other week) and I think if he had a preference, he'd rather be alone with his imaginary friends in video games (Oblivion or World of Warcraft, but mainly Oblivion) than the sparse ones he has attained.
You should also know that long ago he liked a girl named Allison and never told her. Big shocker. Allison is still just a friend, but at this point, his crush has ended. (or so he said) He also says he wishes guys his age weren't so hell bent on "scoring with girls" because he's not at this point, which is another thing all together.
Last summer, my family went on our annual vacation and spent a small, wet portion of it at Block Island. The ONLY souvenir my son has from the ENTIRE trip is a zip-up Block Island hooded sweatshirt that cost almost $50.00. He LOVES this hoodie and wears it almost every day. Scratch that, he USED to wear it every day up until a few weeks ago.
I notice he's not wearing it, I ask him about it and he gives me a bunch of excuses. A week or more passes, I ask again, he says it's at school, and then some more time until I finally feel something's not right and tell him, "Get that sweatshirt out of your locker and back home or I'm nixing video games until you do."
Finally, he breaks down and says Allison asked to borrow it because she was cold, wore it the rest of the day, took it home, and never brought it back. Every time he asks for it back, she says she forgot it or a number of other excuses. Finally, I had him write her on Myspace (he doesn't have her phone number) and demand the sweatshirt back with an embarrassing caveat, "My mother is going to come into school and request a meeting with your parents for this sweatshirt if I don't get it by Wednesday." I let him add his own stuff about just skipping the embarrassment, bringing it in, blah blah blah.
He wants it back. He still loves it, but he also feels I should just let it go. Even though that's his only memento from our trip, and his favorite article of clothing, he'd rather just let some strange girl keep it. (I saw her Myspace, she IS odd, and no, she doesn't like my son, she's "crushing bad" on some other teen, two in fact, both goth, both NOT my son ... so her keeping it is really because she doesn't want to bother herself with giving it back and because she's wearing it at night now or some such weird stuff)
My question is simple: Should I follow through and call the school to arrange some kind of meeting with this girl's parents or should I let the girl just keep his favorite hoodie? I REALLY want to get it back and I'm kind of pissed she took it and thinks it's no big deal to keep it, but I'm wondering if this is just some weird parental move on my part.