Tag Archives: films

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World…?

2014-10-17 19.35.25

An asteroid about to hit the earth and destroy all life as we know it – what would you do? Who would you seek out? What sins would you reconcile, or what sins would you finally commit? What temptations would you finally make sure to fulfill? What past aggressions would you forgive and forget? What is that one thing that you always wanted to or were meant to get done but haven’t so far?

I saw this film, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, tonight and I got to say – I am neither a friend of Steven Carell or Keira Knightley (though to her defense, I do enjoy her mother’s plays – her mother happens to be Sharman Macdonald), I was still happily surprised by this film. Not in the sense that the end of the world is anything to be excited about, but in the sense of some good storytelling.

And as always, a good story gets me thinking – and I do got my thinking onesie on. Am I lonely when I am alone? What would I do if the end of the world was imminent? Would I make a mad dash around the world to get to my family or would I be content with the notion they know I love them, cherish them and have always appreciated every bit of their existence?

Then I read this interesting article – and after, honestly too many, 2014-10-02 22.09.05“you’ll find someone”, “you’ll want to settle down soon”, “you’ll change your mind when you meet someone” even after I’ve explicitly expressed my opinion about procreation and marriage and whatnot – I find it uplifting to not be alone in the idea that being on my own is not condemnable. For example, “if our society still struggles to accept someone on their own – especially if that someone is a woman”(1), it doesn’t mean it’s not all right. I do seek out human contact; I have my friends, I have a family and I have my cats (yes, some call me crazy cat lady). I am alone but I am not lonely. I am alone but I am no actively seeking to have a partner on my side.

I have, in the past, been very concerned about being with someone. The more I tried, the more I realised I would end of in relationships I would feel I was “settling” in or I was unhappy otherwise, just afraid to break it off in the fear of being alone. I would go on dates, get involved and then something dramatically unsettling would happen, or what is worse – absolutely nothing would happen. So what’s the point?

Is there an age limit when those around me can finally accept that if I say I’m happy to be on my own and I don’t want to have kids? I’m setting my sights to thirty – which is a bit more than a year away so buckle up, buddies – I ain’t getting hitched. And those who know me, know my dating habits are not the most conventional as such. Most recent dating ended up in a dramatic bust and then there’s the on-off-on-again music-man that just unravels my head, heart and body in a single word. Maybe I don’t make the safest, wisest or most life-easing choices. But I never have, it seems. The head-first-through-the-hardest-of-stones-attitude runs in my family. I learn through mistakes and I build my personality by doing it my way. It’s really not that I couldn’t find anyone to share my existence with if I set my mind and body to it – I just don’t particularly want to.

Although, what I’ve learned and will keep reminding others and especially myself of, is never say never. So, I won’t say ever never but I will say I am pretty confident that I am just as content being on my couch, reading a book, watching a film, writing a random thought out, designing a book as I am in building my career, planning ahead, working my butt off, as I am on doing all that on my own without a partner to validate me or my efforts.

So, can all those who love me concede I am happy and be happy for me? Well, I could use a more interesting, creatively demanding and based on my education kind of job but hey – nothing’s perfect and it’s all about one step at a time, ain’t it?

Ref:

1 – Being single by choice is liberating, says Hannah Betts, http://www.telegraph.co.uk

Also, read more, if you speak the language, as this is not just an Anglophone thing:

Egoistische Zweisamkeit: Ersatzreligion Liebe, http://www.faz.net/

Moni sanoo parisuhteelle ei kiitos, http://www.hs.fi/

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Remembering the Genius in Genie, and in Life.

“You – you alone will have the stars as no-one else has them…In one of the stars I shall be living. In one of them I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing when you look at the sky at night.

Robin

I have loved the living picture, the spoken word and all performing arts as long as I can remember.
Both of my parents love literature, music and enjoy the arts, both in their own unique way, and that love has been passed on to me, my brother and my younger sisters.
And as much as I hate to admit it, there was a person in my life once who had a profound impact on me when it came to film. I liked watching films prior to this person, but with this person (who was with film, like in everything in his life, fanatic) my appreciation and notions of entertainment grew into a full-blown love and passion that I can barely keep up with recently.
After high-school (A-levels, lukio or whatever else you might call it) I went to Ireland for the Dublin Business School – School of Arts, where I started to study Film, Literature and Drama . The teachers I had were probably some of the most dedicated group of individuals I’ve met as they were teaching what they loved, though maybe not always what they knew. But it was enough to fuel the already ignited passion within.
Life has swept me away to duty and command – but every now and again I get to return to this once so strong passion. Watching film after film, show after show and I always return to those I’ve learned to love or lived with for years (Polanski, Allen, Gilliam, Coen’s and single films from more obscure directors – well, maybe not obscure to you, but obscure enough for me). Perhaps that’s why when I learned the news of Robin Williams, and mere day later of Lauren Bacall, I was genuinely upset. I cried in the bus on my way to work after I saw the breaking news on Robin Williams (silly people around me asked me if I needed help – how could they not understand we were beyond help; the Genie had died?!). But Williams was THE talent for me for very long time. Him and Billy Crystal. They hold no comparison. But also, it reminded me how little we know of those we admire, and of the fragility of life as we know it. Robin Williams, for me, has always been there. Always.
Suicide, eh. Shaming, blame placing – seriously? Body’s not even properly cold yet. I don’t think the guilt and shame put upon his previous wives is fair (financial issues, divorce bladibla); depression is real depression is suffocating and depression – most of all – is beyond words, and when it comes to that stage, even the legend himself said, in the role of Lance in World’s Greatest Dad:”If you are that depressed, reach out to someone. And remember, suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.” Did he? We will never know.
I admire the spirit. I admire the strength. And I do, despite it all, admire the facade. I admire the man who despite his own demons found the time to give to those deserving (the troops, the sick, and other).
In an interview with Ellen, from 4:05 there’s a bit where Williams mentions his heart surgery, getting a second chance in life, refuting possible depression and “feeling alive”… Haunting. And not to remember, the man was out to spread joy despite his own demons, so make sure you watch till the end to see the Janet Jackson impression. Priceless.
All this. All the media hype. All the talk of what his life was like. And the actual act of William ending it all… Goes to show, we really know anything about the people we see in the public eye.
The fact whether or no I knew him doesn’t change the fact that I will miss him. He was one of the first actors I was aware of as an actor, as a person whose job it is to create what we see for entertainment.
His films were a part of my growing up. Mrs. Doubtfire was probably one of the first films that had me laughing that genuine “I know what’s happening” here laughter, as my parents were breaking up. Jumanji was a film our dad showed us, and I remember being utterly terrified for weeks on end that I’ll be sucked into my board games and monster will take me (over-vivid imagination, perchance?) and to this day, Dead Poets Society, Aladdin, Jack, The Birdcage, The Fisher King, Hook and Mork & Mindy top my favorite’s list. There are so many of his films I haven’t seen yet, or should see again. I still haven’t comprehended the fact that this amazing man isn’t there. And I haven’t comprehended the fact that though I know first-hand what depression can do, that it can still break someone so … Williams.
In the Genie’s own words; “You don’t know about real loss, because it only occurs when you love something more than you love yourself.”
Rest in peace, o Captain, my captain. I will look at the stars for you, the stars where you are free

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Crying Therapy – retraining your emotional rollercoaster

A cry baby, difficult child, always whining and making a fuss, running about with no aim, singing and making up stories, screaming when unhappy, laughing when happy. Every emotion conceivable out on the open, like a one-child-full-circus performance. That was me. To certain extent still is. But it’s different now – less outward, more inward. I like to act up, be a little crazy, hyper and hype others around me.

Pursuit - Empowering Post-natal Depression by Saila Turkka and Aija Oksman

Pursuit – Empowering Post-natal Depression by Saila Turkka and Aija Oksman

But sometimes I do feel the pressure and sadness in me, struggling to get up some days, having trouble sleeping during others. In my previous post, I mentioned how working on Saila’s story had me facing up my own inner feelings, the hidden depressive episodes or trying to come to terms I don’t have to carry the world on my shoulders – just myself.

It was easy, as an emotional, uncontrollable child to just burst all the emotions out, make everyone aware I was having a feeling right then and there. But that caused a lot of trouble for me when growing up. I learned that not everyone wants to be part of my kaleidoscope of inner experiences. But at some point, somewhere around the time I was, oh, fifteen or so, I lost it. I wouldn’t, couldn’t cry, not in front of others. I was scared of that side of me.

And I taught myself not to. I trained myself to hold back, keep control. Instead of crying, I might get really angry. I would still experience the rollercoaster of emotions, but I would rather keep the negative in and let the positive out in massive bursts. It was, and I was, exhausting. But see, crying is good for you. It lets out pain, stress, fear, anger… It makes sure you won’t consume yourself in all those emotions.

I was just recently reminded by some good old friends how I shouldn’t pretend all is good when it’s not, I should tell them, reach out and let go. That there’s nothing wrong feeling bad, just as there’s nothing wrong feeling good. No one is omnipotent all the time.What with master thesis hand in day looming ever closer, once and a while a good cry is needed.

Secretly, over the past couple years, I’ve discovered what I call “the crying therapy”. There is a time and a place for showing your emotions, but not showing any isn’t healthy either. My therapy is simple; I deliberately read or watch something that I know will get me emotional. And I’ll keep watching and reading till I actually cry. I try to unblock a flood of stress, anxiety and fear that builds up as part of a normal ever-day experiences of being a student, of living far from your nearest and dearest or just being so damn tired that you need a good cry to balance yourself. See, I’ve always been extremely emotional, but a lot of the times I’ve been too afraid to go with it.

I’m trying to learn that if it makes you cry, cry. There’s a reason for it.

And sometimes, we just don’t get how much pets, our family, means to us; “I died today”, by Duke Roberts (http://www.robynarouty.com/)

Books;

The way I read and the way I think about what I’ve read is something I’ve grown up with my mother, who is an avid reader and a gentle soul (but she lets her emotions out even less than me, so maybe there’s a family tendency to get emotionally constipated till eventual burst of the carefully built dams). I have always loved the world books and stories bring you in, and quite often, unexpected, catapult you into completely unknown. For example;

The Five People You Meet in Heaven (Mitch Albom) always got me thinking…

Twelve Years a Slave (Solomon Northup) – and other slave narratives, which were my primary focus in African American literary studies in Salzburg – real stories, real people… You know?

The poetry of William Blake has many that I know well, and always gets to me;

When the stars threw down their spears 
And water’d heaven with their tears: 
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
– The Tyger

And more recently, I shed a good few tears over The Guillotine Choice (Michael Malone and Bashir Saoudi).

And films, my god the chimera of films! So many to mention… The Kid, The Elephant Man, Shawshank Redemption, Stand By Me, Sophie’s Choice, The Snowman, CInema Paradiso, The Boy in Striped Pajamas… I think the this clip is a good example; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JtnrBEyVIwg

Music… This is harder to pick examples from. It gets you unexpectedly, anytime, anywhere and it can be a silly pop song you have memories with, or something that brings back bad memories, or other kinds of memories, confused thoughts, or brings you back to childhood fandom.

Random videos I’ve stumbled upon;




http://faithtap.com/410/you-are-my-sunshine-sang-by-elderly-couple/?a=1
http://faithtap.com/1326/birthday-video-for-rachel/?a=1
http://faithtap.com/1120/homeless-lottery-winner/?a=1
faithtap.com/962/a-homeless-dog-living-in-trash-pile-rescue/?a=1

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