05 February 2016


Twelve Things about Mrs. Doubtfire

12. My post Twelve Things about Stepmom included a tiny, throwaway allusion to this earlier movie about "non-traditional" families and divorce . . . and guess which movie everyone preferred to talk about? =P

I think I've waited long enough. Here's another go at another film which sends up that time-honoured genre of children's storytelling: the faerie tale.

11. We begin with that classic source of childhood misery: a broken home. Since this is a modern story, it's not death that parts the parents, but "irreconcilable differences." Yet every child understands that those are crappy reasons, so the movie has to bend over backwards to keep the mother, who initiates the divorce proceedings, from looking like the villain.

I can't remember what I thought about Sally Field's character when I watched this as a child, but as an adult, I see exactly where she is coming from and I understand. I also empathise very deeply with Robin Williams's character. There is no malice in their relationship, but there is incredible frustration. Should they have stayed together? Of course. Could they have stayed together without one of them becoming truly miserable? I have a very strong opinion on that, but never mind it now.

10. What we know of their marriage begins with the "last straw" . . .

28 January 2016


Grisu: Watchdog, Parts 2 and 3

Our darling little dragon may not have been very successful the first time he set out to be a dog, but he gets two more chances in the next episodes of Grisu Il Draghetto. (These were also episodes of Grisu der kleine Drache, but they weren't shown in the same order.)

-Vorrei tanto riparare al malfatto del ultima volta!-
(I would very much like to make up for the mistake of last time!)

"Ich moechte zu gerne, dass unglueck ______ mit dem verbrannten Panzer wiedergutmachen!"
(I would very much like to make up for the unlucky _____ with the burning tank!)

Depending on the type of reader you are, you are either wondering what the missing word is or wondering if you missed the Grisu post on the verbrannte Panzer. Well, I can't help you with the former until my Austrian friend helps me, but I can assure you that you didn't miss any of our little dragon's adventures. By the end of this post, you'll know all about the tank and a bit more about the order in which the German epsiodes were aired.

24 January 2016


Religious Reading

Is this still a book blog? From where I sit, it's starting to feel like more of a language blog--and if the drafts I'm currently working on make the cut, it may feel that way from where you sit, too. Yet I still do most of my reading and general media consumption in English, and will continue to do so as long as I have a TBR Pile casting baleful looks in my direction.

What this blog has never been--or so I've protested too much since I started it--is a big-C Catholic blog. There is the occasional religious commentary, but in general, I try to be more small-C catholic. But if you're visiting for the first time, you'd never guess that from this post alone.

Three Big-C Catholic Books
Recently "Redeemed" from the TBR Pile

20 January 2016


"Two or Three" Book Club, Meeting 139

Today's fiaba is a bit of a repeat--which is inevitable, I guess, when the biggest factor in the story selection process is luck. We first encountered this type of tale with I Due Gobbi of Meeting 134; but I first read this specific one (but from a French source) and a version of the same from Andrew Lang as a child. They were probably already very obscure then, too, and I was lucky to run into it. But I do think we're a bit poorer for our ignorance, as if our vocabulary has lost several words. (And now I wonder how many we've totally forgotten that I will never know about . . .)

18 January 2016


Early Edition: Walking Catastrophe

It would have been nice to get my series on Early Edition, Season 1 done before diving into Grisu . . . but let's not dwell on why things didn't work out last year. There's a new year upon us, exactly one more episode left, and several weeks before the one-year anniversary of the post in which I announced my word for 2015, so I can still CLEAR this with dignity!

When you've got the "What," "Where," "When," "Why," and "How":
Does the "Who" still matter?

Gary is one of the most conscientious characters ever written . . . but do you suppose he would have let an entire city block burn if The Paper had revealed just who was behind the fire? LOL!

14 January 2016


Theme Thursday 20

On this day in January 2016, we finally enter May 2011. Imagine how life would be if we all moved through time at different speeds! Perhaps we really do and just don't notice it because we agree to keep the peace by following the same calendar and clock. (Well, mostly. Right, Orthodox friends?)

Way back on 5 May 2011, the focus was on characters . . .

This Week's Theme:
Female Person

11 January 2016


"Two or Three" Book Club, Meeting 138

Well, I was right about one thing from last week: I finished today's long story, Ari-ari, ciuco mio, butta danari!, the day after I chose it, because I was worried that if I tried to read it in bits and pieces, it would take me forever to get done! But the complexity made possible by the length got me dragging my feet when it came time to write the post for it. Perhaps next time I should go with a medium-length fiaba.

UPDATE: We have a story for Meeting 139! But it's not quite medium-length, as you will see when you scroll to the end.