Kiwis and Castles

Friday, November 25, 2005

Gill Lambert, film critic extraordinaire

On Wednesday I "surprised" Matt by taking him to see John Cleese's new show My Life, Times, and Current Medical Problems. I say "surprised" because Matt has known where I was taking him for a couple weeks now, but played along since I hadn't actually told him. The show was absolutely brilliant. He started with his current medical problems, including the real pictures of his colonectomy I think it was, pointing out in detail where the colon had nearly been blocked off, the bubbles of fat surrounding it, and other pretty gross things I never needed to know. He then went on to describe how his career started and developed, with slightly less funny interludes by his daughter. Her funniest story was about growing up Cleese and not knowing that what happened in her house wasn't normal. Case in point: in elementary school they were doing some project and every kid had to bring in a photo of their parents for the display. John gave her a picture of him holding her in his arms out on the sidewalk. Only he was in tiger-print dress with a matching hat. He talked a lot about his mother, and growing up in the small town and how a boring childhood is absolutely necessary for developing a very dry wit. He asked the audience to yell out their favorite Monty Python sketch - of course it was overwhelmingly the Dead Parrot bit - and then he and his daughter acted it out, with a NZ twist. It was the Dead Sheep sketch instead. He had also put together a short montage of his favorite Fawlty Towers scenes (or Watery Bowels, as is my family's favorite), which of course ended with Mr. Fawlty goosestepping out of the dining room. All in all, it was an aboslutely fantastic show, Matt managed to stay awake the whole time despite working ridiculous hours, and my face hurt from laughing so much.

Last night I went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. To be perfectly honest, I didn't think it was as good as the others. I know most of the civilised world disagrees with me, but I just felt that it didn't have the same ... well, magic to it that the other ones did. I thought that they tried to include all the story lines which meant that none of them were told to their full potential. ((Warning! If you haven't seen the movie or read the book, don't keep reading!)) They only introduced the character of Cedric a couple times and the audience didn't build any sort of relation to him, so when Voldemort kills him in the graveyard it was just kinda ... meh. People die all the time in these books and I just didn't feel upset that Cedric had died. They also tried to show that Harry was smitten with Cho Chang, which came across well, but didn't show that Hermione was really that into Viktor Krum, so when the boys from Durmstrang left and she was all upset by it, I just felt that it wouldn't have made sense if I hadn't read the books. The other thing that really bothered me was that they show Harry seeing through Voldemort's eyes in his "dreams" but never explain was was going on, or why Harry was seeing it, or him saving Arthur Weasly from the snake in the Ministry, or his Occlumency lessons with Snape. I think all those things were meant to happen in this book, and not the Order of the Phoenix, right? If I am mistaken then I take back that last bit of critisism. However, to be fair to the movie, the other girls I went with loved it and Diane was literally biting her nails the entire time - and she has read the books and knows exactly what happens!

And we're going to Tahiti the day after tomorrow! Woohoo! I promise that I'll take pictures there and then post them online, as well as pictures of my being a tourist with my parents around NZ when they come in December.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Slacking

If anyone actually checks this, sorry for not having posted in nearly a month, but very little has happened and very little has changed. I've still been nannying for the two families but this comes to an end on Wednesday. I've agreed to do some babysitting and nannying for one of the families for the next two-ish weeks but it will just be whenever she calls. I've been packing up the apartment in preparation for the move next weekend, which should go smoothly. The I'll have the week after that to unpack and then re-pack for our cruise to Tahiti! Obviously we're both really excited about that, but Matt probably more so than I am seeing as he's been working 7 day weeks pretty much since I got here.

Last weekend we went to a Rat Pack themed party. All the guys looked like 1930s Mafia and all the girls looked like Audrey Hepburn/Breakfast at Tiffany's. It was good fun with lots of cigars and champagne. The occasion was Guy Fawkes Day, which I'd heard of but never celebrated in Canada. As the story goes, in the early 1500's there was a plot to blow up the Queen and the Houses of Parliament by stashing something like 36 barrels of gun powder in the basement and setting it off when parliament was in session. There were 13 people involved in the Gunpowder Plot but one of them seemed to have gotten cold feet and sent a letter to his buddy in parliament to tell him to stay away on the chosen date. The letter was given over to the police, who went down to the basement and foiled the plan. Guy Fawkes was the only member of the gang that was found down there, so he was arrested and burned. Eventually they found the rest of the gang and tortured them to get them to confess, and then killed them all anyways. So to celebrate the burning of Fawkes the British have ever since set off fireworks and bonfires with effigies of him. The irony seems to be that in modern times Guy Fawkes day is cause for great celebration, with parties and fireworks and general merriment, it appears to be more of a celebration of the Plot and not of his capture. Here, at least, there were fireworks and festivities, yet not one bonfire or effigy in sight ...