more stars than in the heavens

not in our stars, but in ourselves

Monday roundup?!

Yes, why not start the week with an assortment of Things I’m Thinking About But Don’t Feel Like Writing An Entire Post About:


1. Today would be Marilyn Monroe’s 89th birthday.  As you may know, if you’ve been following this blog for a while, I’ve been immensely interested in Monroe – as a person, as an actor, as a phenomenon – since I was a kid.  All too often, she’s misrepresented: dumb blonde, homewrecker, “plus size” icon, etc., etc.  She’s usually reduced to her body and its effect on the men around her, basically, as if that were all there was to her.  She was, in fact, extremely bright and funny in real life: eternally curious and desperate to educate herself, since she felt a crushing sense of inadequacy for having dropped out of high school at age 16 (she married in order to avoid going back into another foster home – and of course, nice little homemaker wives stayed home to dote on their husbands in 1942).  She was no homewrecker; the supposed affairs with two of the Kennedy brothers are almost certainly myth in the case of JFK, and impossible to prove in the case of RFK.  She had an affair with Yves Montand, when her own marriage to Arthur Miller was about to implode, but she did take her relationships seriously.  She was no flibbertigibbet.  The “plus size” rumor is absurd, considering that her official measurements were 37″-22″-35″.  She fluctuated throughout her life, especially when she and Miller were trying (and failing) to start a family, but she was just curvy – never “plus size” in any meaningful sense.  I don’t know.  I wish I had it in me to write at length about this, because I do feel strongly about making sure people remember her as she was, but for now: happy birthday, Marilyn, and I hope that you’re happy and at peace, wherever you are.


2. Boyf and I saw Mad Max: Fury Road again last night.  It’s just as great the second time around (as well as easier to follow).  A funny moment, when we were leaving the theatre, and I heard a bro-dude behind me: “I didn’t get the ending, but everything else was crystal clear.” Translation: “I didn’t understand the dismantling of the patriarchy and its rightful replacement by a more just matriarchal society, but the explosions were fucking awesome!” Oh, Broseph.  Perhaps this will be the seed to blossom in your confused little head.


3. Speaking of my favorite movie of the year, last week’s mashup led me to purchase (yes, I purchased it, because even though I have no ethical opposition to downloading for free, I also don’t mind supporting things with my dollar when I really really like them) the Fury Road soundtrack.  The timing couldn’t be better, because I was beginning to feel that my running playlist was getting stale.  No more, friends.  I tried it out on Saturday, with a dreaded Outdoor Run, but it was sunny and muggy and about 90 degrees.  A scant three miles in, I decided it would be better to go inside and have a beer.  I feel sure that Furiosa would have done the same.  Today, however, I was on the treadmill (lovely, climate-controlled gym! how I love you!) – and I banged out five and a half miles, shiny and chrome.  I resisted the urge to yell at the wimp on the elliptical next to me, “AM I AWAITED IN VALHALLA???  WITNESS ME!!!!!!!” – but it was a real struggle, let me tell you. (Yeah, treadmills are wimpy compared to Outdoor Running, but do you want me to do cardio or not?  Geez.) Anyway, the point is that Fury Road should win every Oscar for which it’s eligible (Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Cinematography, Screenplay, Editing, Visual Effects, etc., etc.) – but it probably has a decent shot at Best Score, and it had better win that, at the very least.


4. Oh, and speaking of things involving Tom Hardy!  Usually, Buzzfeed is a cesspool of listicles and quizzes and softcock think pieces masquerading as “journalism” – but every now and again, they do the Lord’s work.  To wit: A Reminder That Tom Hardy Had The Best Myspace Profile Of All Time.  Mr. Hardy, beefy and beautiful puppy in human form, has been a treasure all his life.  Look at his chav-tastic photos, and get a load of his prose writing:

September 11, 2005 

I have a Kat in my hotel room, I wish I could send you the photos I took on my cellphone, I spent 4 hrs manually zapping fleas on the bugger and fed him threw him in the bath and we’re like 95% flea free, now went to the super market but they didn’t have no stuff but raid so I sprayed the room with this pollutant spray killing anything that falls off him gonna get him wormed tomorrow at the pet store. then we got to find him a home. he shines right now. i call him CJ after the guy in GTA San Andreas. he’s on my mobile phone, plenty of photos, but this new one ain’t set up to send or retrieve photomessaging so I will have to update you with photos when I get back to London. On the way back from the internet cafe yesterday, there’s this kitten in the road, and I’m like. hey kat whssup? then I had to double take. that’s a small cat as cats go. it’s prolly like a couple months old max. so I’m like hey little fella, and I look about but no one is looking for this thing. so I stopped and turned round and said hey kat where’s your family, and he’s like I don’t know.then he wanders up to me and bang he’s in my scoop and I’m looking around I ask a few old ladies this your cat, a man this your… nothing, infact the languague barrier lifts with one old lady who speaks no english but I can tell she wishes me well infact every girl in town now notices I have a kitten and even though I have a skinhead and baggy pants on, the uniform of the criminal, I am now such a sweet boy with his kitten. I’m like no, you don’t understand this is not my kitten, this is God’s child I found in the street prolly belongs to some kid who is crying right now, I don’t want kat, even if I did want kat, I can’t have kat, he has no passport I have a dog who will eat Kat, the responsibility, I am a tourist I stay at Hilton this thing is not allowed in the Hilton, so I’m holding this little big prollem. I look at C.J he looks at me licking his fleabag paws. and says “so where we headed?”….. 

we had a mishap on the carpet but I took the washing powder and cleaned up, with a flannel! I know but when you’re a man on location you make do with whatever you can. 

He also had a little accident on the duvet which p###d me off coz that’s my bed but he’s like a baby but cat piss s lethal so I couldn’t tell reception I had kat in the room and I sure as hell wasn’t going to admit to peeing the bed, or sprinkling, what type of man sprinkles the bed? so I poured some coca cola on the sheets got some fresh ones and committed C.J to the bathroom for the night, where he screamed blue murder. You got to know that this cat lay asleep upside down in my lap for four hours being preened. at first he was pissed but as the itches grew less frequent he knew I was helping him out so. bonk lights out snoring feet in the air. we bedded him down in the bathroom, and C.J got lungs man I’m telling you all night he’s like “WoAh WOAH! PLEASE!” 

he is now on my bed watching telly I am at the internet cafe again the funny thing is I confessed to reception, OK this guy stayed the night I deflead him and dewormed him so he’s clean…technically 65% lie there but we’ll de worm and deflea tomorrow when the store with the chemicals opens up. I got to find him a home is there like an RSPCA here or something? the girls at reception fall in love with him. he’s all fluffy coz I put him in a bath, I told them they’re like we can see, really this kat sparkles now. but he doesn’t want to hang out with them he wants to sit on my shoulder and stare and watch MTV in the room. So anyway she says you can keep him in your room no problem. we can get housekeeping to send something special up. A litter tray Hallelulah!!! That is so cool, now that only happens at really cool places, you know. So C.J and his remaining fleas are lounging on the covers taking calls, watching extreme sports and tomorrow he’s coming to work and we’re going to try and get him rehoused. he is such a dude, and he is very funny and likes to talk a lot cuddle and sleep, plus he follows me everywhere talking romanian, I’m like I live in london dude I have no idea what you’re on about, you can’t live with me we’ll find you someone. Blood and Chocolate is shooting here with Hugh Dancy some werewolf movie, and I told one of the actors yo you might inherit C.J if I can’t find him a home. I got 10 days. So does anyone know anyone in Bucharest that wants an actor’s Kat? please call the ##### Hilton in ##### they’ll put you through to my room and we’ll get you one Kat! 

XXXX Tommy

I’m even more in love than I was before.  I didn’t think that was possible.  Tom, Tom, my darling!  Come to me!


5. Hey, guess what, I watched Game of Thrones last night.  Well, my fella did, and I was in the room.  Anyway, it was pretty entertaining, all things considered.  Something happened, and that something was not rape!  Wow!  I won’t spoil it, lest you’ve yet to see it yourself, but the last 15 minutes or so are – shall we say – suitably chilling.  Ruh-roh, Jon Snow!

(150429) -- KATHMANDU, April 29, 2015 (Xinhua) -- Ruins are seen after earthquake at Hanumandhoka Durbar Square in Kathmandu, Nepal, April 29, 2015. The 7.9-magnitude quake hit Nepal at midday on Saturday. (Xinhua/Sunil Sharma) (djj)

(150429) — KATHMANDU, April 29, 2015 (Xinhua) — Ruins are seen after earthquake at Hanumandhoka Durbar Square in Kathmandu, Nepal, April 29, 2015. The 7.9-magnitude quake hit Nepal at midday on Saturday. (Xinhua/Sunil Sharma) (djj)

6. In much more serious news, I would like to encourage you all to check out this crowdsourcing page.  A classmate of mine, Sabina, is from Kathmandu; and, like many (many many many many) Nepalese, her life was devastated by the massive earthquakes in April and May.  While it’s still a great idea to donate to bigger charities like Doctors Without Borders and UNICEF, I would like to ask you to consider donating to Sabina’s as well.  Rather than focus only on herself and her family, she’s working to make sure that the families from her community all have enough food, water, clothing and shelter – since international aid offered by those larger charities is often slow to arrive.  It’s a remarkably generous thing to do, and one that takes real strength, considering that she’s a victim herself.  Please donate if you can.  She emailed me directly to tell me about the family she was able to help with my donation, and asked how I’d been since graduating, and generally proved herself to be an astonishingly kindhearted and hardworking person.  Western media has mostly stopped covering the aftermath in Nepal, so I think it’s easy for some of us to forget that it’s still a problem.  It is, and you can help.  Please do, if you’re able.

7. And finally, in completely non-serious news: yeah, I’m way behind with my movie project.  I’ll catch up this week and next weekend.  Promise.  You’re all clamoring for me to get back to movie writing, aren’t you?  Yes, I thought so.


2 comments on “Monday roundup?!

  1. Ben Goodman
    June 2, 2015

    It’s not that you haven’t been writing about movies, it’s that the movies have only been fury road since fury road came out. And I totally understand – it is *impossible* to stop thinking about.

    Plus, you’re totally right about the soundtrack – I listened to it on a 100-mile drive this weekend and consider myself lucky to have not earned myself a speeding ticket. I LIVE, I DIE, I LIVE AGAIN!

    • mcwhirk
      June 2, 2015

      That is a verifiable fact. Nothing else matters, really.

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