Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Semester started yesterday. One rhetoric class that meets on Tuesdays and Friday. Today I have writing lab and the 'special' pronunciation group where we read dialogues. I'm not really sure if it helps improve pronunciation but it probably doesn't hurt. Plus it's kind of fun. I found a copy of Raymond Carver's short stories called What We Talk About When We Talk About Love that I've been reading on the BART train, and was thinking of using it for the pronunciation group. Pretty amazing, and also pretty bleak. Spare and unadorned. I started to write out a line from the book but then erased it thinking it wouldn't make any sense outside of the context of the story, and might make me seem like a violent misogynist. Knowing nothing about Raymond Carver other than a lot of writing is described as "Carver-esque", it's very possible that he was just that, but I refuse to read a wikipedia entry about him right now so if you know better please, with grace, allow this sentence to pass.

But mostly the stories are about sadness and relationships falling apart: affairs, sickness, disappointment, booze, violence, fathers, mothers, and divorcees. The kind of short stories, really short stories that thud with the last line and make you want to go back and re-read the details. I have to admit that it's a little hard to write at this moment. Like squeezing toothpaste out of a mangled tube. The last ten days of the break I didn't do any writing at all. On Sunday I went to see The Tree of Life, the new Terrance Malick movie that happens to have Brad Pitt in it. When I spell check Malick it suggest Metallica. Ride the lightning. But it was kind of an amazing movie. The rare movie that when somebody asks, was it good? The question doesn't really apply, because it's not really a movie. At least not in a narrative sense, though there is a narrative, but it's not really what the two some hours in the theater are about. I hate to say it but it's more like a poem than a movie.

The first five minutes are worth the price of admission and if you throw in the scene with the dinosaurs (!) you're already in the bonus land of speculative pleasure. In other movie news I also saw the movie Super 8 during the last couple weeks of the break, and I can't remember three things about it. Though I can remember two things: train crash, alien eyeball. More than that I remember how delicious the nectarine was that I ate while watching it. I'll stop there because I need to get some things together and put my socks on. The best part about this semester is that unlike last semester I have a lot of time to write. Looking forward to remembering why I do all this in the first place.