A case of the Sundays

It’s been another lovely weekend in the Longoria household.  Not that it hasn’t been without its faults.  I re-potted two plants yesterday morning (and froze my fingers off during the process – literally.  Just kidding.  Not literally.  I figuratively froze off my fingers) but not before I dropped them three times.  One plant, the rubber tree, was actually dropped by Mother Nature.  A freakish and evil gust of wind blew the plant off our patio table, and the plant crashed to the ground.  The pot was a complete loss, but the plant seems to be okay.  The next plant I repotted was our beautiful jade.  The leaves seem to be falling off quite easily, so I postulated that the plant needed more breathing room.  As I shook the plant out of the existing pot, I noticed that the 14-inch tall plant was completely root-bound in its original clump of soil.  The circumference of this base was maybe 3 inches.  I broke up the root ball a little bit and then repotted it.  As I was taking it in the house, the top-heavy jade flipped right over and sprayed soil everywhere in our kitchen entry-way.  I clean it up, repotted the plant, and then cleaned the outside of the pot, which was completely covered in soil.  I walked 5 steps into the living room and promptly dropped the whole pot.  Dirt sprayed everywhere.  I was still looking at it mournfully when Tim returned from the grocery store and helped me clean it up.  Hopefully the jade will survive.  It lost many, many leaves.  It looks…curly, somehow.  I don’t think it’s supposed to look curly.  I hope it perks up.

That was pretty much the end of the tragedies for the weekend.  Although today when I was jogging, I did get glanced by bird poop.  It hit my sunglasses and the edge of my shirt.  It could have been much, much worse.

The good stuff that happened this weekend consisted of me making super delicious chocolate chip cookies, Lucent’s ear infection improving dramatically (thanks to Tim religiously cleaning his ear and putting meds in it daily), me purse-shopping and not buying anything, getting a tremendous deal on A Brief History of  Time and The Universe in a Nutshell book duo at Borders, finding nice folks at BWW who shared their table with us and relieved us from a 40 minute wait, and watching Shaun of the Dead.

Timmy Tee is ill, though.  He has a super bad chest cold.  I need to start sending him to work with a face-mask and rubber gloves.

I watched 500 Days of Summer on Friday night.  Gotta say, I’m not a fan.  Joseph Gordon-Levitt was good in it, but I found Zooey Deschanel to be affected and unrealistic.  They made her out to be some sort of guy fantasy.  I guess any girl with huge, blue eyes and a penchant for The Smiths is irresistable.  Maybe I’m just too used to seeing her sister on Bones.  Maybe one can only like one Deschanel at a time.  It’s interesting too, how being an architect is so often held up as being this laudable achievement.  I enjoyed architectural drafting as much as the next person, but I have to imagine that being an architect in real life is all sorts of tedious.  Drawing beautiful buildings would be awesome, but having to know thousands of building codes would not be awesome.  What’s wrong with being a greeting-card writer?!

I also finished I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith (author of 101 Dalmatians).  I really enjoyed it up until the point that Cassandra (the 17-year-old girl who is constantly referred to as a “child” – is a 17-year-old really a “child?”!) falls in love with her sister’s fiance based on a single kiss.  Suddenly she is completely devoted to him.  It didn’t seem like realistic behavior for a girl her age, especially a girl who is continuously presented as being wiser than her years and more mature and insightful than her 21-year-old sister.  I liked the movie more, I think because you don’t get to know Cassandra as well in the movie, so her behaviour is less nonsensical.

I also attempted to do some watercolor painting.  I discovered that any talent I may have had has completely deserted me.  This is all I have to show for my attempts:

I decided to give color a rest and pick up my old standby, sketching.  I used a 2H pencil to sketch out Lucent, and then darkened it up with a nice charcoal pencil.

I think I need to find a good house to paint – maybe then I will find my mojo again.  If you have a good house photograph – one with interesting light and shadows (and uncomplicated detailing), please send it my way.  Maybe if I am beholden to an outside entity to do another painting and to do it semi-well, I’ll actually stand a chance.

I Capture the Castle

I had another Friday night all to my lonesome last night.  Tim was on a trip at Central, so I took him some delicious Jimmy Johns, and then retreated homeward to see what Netflix could do about my insatiable need for a good romantic movie.  I scrolled through the list of movies in the Romance genre and start to feel more and more hopeless.  I didn’t want to watch anything with Julie Roberts or anything with a rating of less than 2 stars.  I think I set my standards way too high.  Why is it so hard to make a good romantic movie?

I finally settled on I Capture the Castle. I liked the looks of the English setting (in a dilapidated castle surrounded by untamed grassy hillocks), the English people (beautiful pale skin and big luminous eyes), and the premise – a writer (the awesome Bill Nighy) using the proceeds from his great literary work, Jacob Wrestled, to take out a 40 year lease on castle.  He moves his wife, two daughters, and son into this castle, attacks his wife with a butter knife and quits writing for 12 years.  The story picks up again when 2 Americans, who have inherited the castle and the surrounding land, come into the picture.  The 2 Americans, conveniently enough, are young, handsome, and rich.  The oldest daughter, Rose, immediately sets her sights on the elder brother, Simon, and his well-endowed bank account.  As she is maybe one of the prettiest people I have ever seen, he of course falls in love with her almost immediately, and they become engaged.  The most interesting person in the story is Cassandra, the 17-year-old who is narrating the story by way of writing in her journal. She is wise beyond her years, beautiful in a more interesting way than Rose, and is also in love with Simon, after he gives her her first kiss.  The person who really should have given her her first kiss, in my opinion, is not her soon-to-be brother-in-law, but Steven, the Greek-god/house boy who has lived with the family for a decade.  He is in love with Cassandra, but she sees him only as a friend.

The story comes to a head when Cassandra tells Steven that she doesn’t love him, but loves Simon instead. Cassandra also tells him that Rose doesn’t love Simon, but is marrying him for the money (money that would save her destitute family).  Several weeks prior, Steven had witnessed Neil (Simon’s brother) and Rose kissing, and he suspicions that Rose and Neil really love each other.  He goes to Neil, explains that Rose doesn’t love Simon, and that Cassandra loves Simon.

Of course, Neil goes to Rose, who truly does love him.  They run away together and live happily ever after.  Simon is still in love with Rose, however, despite how poorly she treated him (the power of a pretty face, I guess?), and Cassandra is still in love with Simon.  And Steven is still in love with Cassandra.  I’m happy that at least one set of people in the story have a happy ending, I guess.

I wish situations like this would only occur in movies (or in the books on which the movies are based), but I know that’s not the case.  No matter how little sense our emotions make in a sane reality, we are often powerless to change them.  I remember that when I fell in love with Tim, an older woman in my congregation invited me over the have French-pressed coffee.  I knew from the outset that it wasn’t just about drinking fancy coffee – we were going to have “a talk.”  This was a woman I greatly respected and whose opinion I treasured.  She was worried about the direction I was taking – falling in love at 19 with a boy who did not fit in the mold of a typical Witness.  I mean, he dyed his hair blond at one point!  And he had sideburns!  I remember telling her that the conversation was too late.  There was absolutely nothing I could do at that point to alter my feelings for Tim. It would have been physically and emotionally completely impossible for me.

No matter how little sense people make when falling in love, I can understand it and appreciate that pain and struggle. Love doesn’t make sense, and it’s messy and complicated.  It’s also an intricate web of physical, emotional, and mental connections that cannot be teased apart.  I’ve never believed in evolution, and the fact that human beings love is more evidence of some outside force influencing humanity.  Why would we evolve with the capacity for love?  It’s not for the propagation of the species – people can procreate without love, and it would probably be more beneficial for the human race if love was removed from that equation.  It would be much better for the species if people bred for the improvement of the species than for love.  Love gets in the way of survival of the fittest.  Love just doesn’t make sense in the context of evolution.  It only makes sense, to me at least, in the context of a God who enabled humans to experience something magical and painful, something that can help us transcend the commonness of daily life.  Love helps make life meaningful.