Thursday, April 14, 2011

It's funny how some things tie together...

It's funny how things tie together sometimes.  I just finished listening to a book on  The book is called "Skippy Dies" by Paul Murray.
Skippy Dies: A Novel

"The extravagantly entertaining “Skippy Dies” chronicles a single catastrophic autumn at Seabrook from a good 20 different perspectives: students, teachers, administrators, priests, girlfriends, doughnut shop managers. At the center of it all is Daniel Juster, known as Skippy, whose death — on the floor of Ed’s Doughnut House, just after writing his beloved’s name on the floor in raspberry filling — opens the novel. “Skippy Dies” then flashes back to the months preceding, months in which the gloomy, doomed 14-year-old falls in love, wins a fight, keeps a secret and attracts the attention of members of the faculty who do not have his best interests at heart."  I LOVED it!!!

A character in the book named Howard; a disillusioned history teacher, is on WWI.  Another teacher directs him (interesting relationship here) to read Robert Graves' account of his experiences in WWI.  Howard, becomes fascinating and inspired with WWI history.  And so did I. 

This sparked my interest in WWI and Robert Graves.  He also makes references to what Rudyard Kipling and his writings after his son died the day after he turned 17 as an officer charging into battle.  (Kipling pulled strings to get his then aged 16 son into the military.  A made for TV movie starring 
Daniel Radcliffe recently aired on PBS called "My Boy Jack" depicting this event. 

"HAVE you news of my boy Jack? "
Not this tide.
"When d'you think that he'll come back?" 
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.
"Has any one else had word of him?"
Not this tide. 
For what is sunk will hardly swim, 
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.

"Oh, dear, what comfort can I find?" 
None this tide,
Nor any tide,
Except he did not shame his kind--- 
Not even with that wind blowing, and that tide.

Then hold your head up all the more,
This tide,
And every tide;
Because he was the son you bore,

And gave to that wind blowing and that tide.
Rudyard Kipling 1915

In the mail today I got a "Netflix" movie I forgot I put on my que.  It' was "The Long Engagement" starring Audrey Tatoui,  many other french film stars, and the now well known in America "Maria Cotilliard" (the awesome actress of   La Vie en Rose")  (There's also a surprise famous American actress in the film!)

This movie with WWI as well.

"Five desperate French soldiers during The Battle of the Somme shoot themselves, either by accident or with purpose, in order to be invalidated back home. Having been "caught" a court-martial convenes and determines punishment to be banishment to No Man's Land with the objective of having the Germans finish them off. In the process of telling this tale each man's life is briefly explored along with their next of kin as Methilde, fiancĂ©e to one of the men, tries to determine the circumstances of her lover's death. This task is not made any easier for her due to a bout with polio as a child. Along the way she discovers the heights and depths of the human soul. Written by Liam McBain "

Excellent story, cinematographic scenes, and  authentic costumes! I loved it!



Sunday, April 3, 2011

Sometimes Ignorance is bliss...

In January I had the good fortune to go to St. Petersburg (South Pasadena specifically) for a week. It was cold and rainy the whole week.   A "wind shear" toppled a gas station overhang on top of a woman in a car, fortunately she was not hurt.  This was about four miles from where we were at.

 Last week I flew down  to drive back with my husband who was all ready there for a week and a half.  On Thursday they had what the locals told me was the worst storm in 20 years! (not counting hurricanes).  Unbelievable winds and rain!  I knew it was bad but I was told "the news always follows storms all day like this".  So I didn't know how bad the storm really was until friends and relatives started calling to see if we were safe.

It was hard to believe that the next day was absolutely beautiful! We went to Dunedin to visit relatives and walk at Honeymoon State Park beach.

Perfect last day to spend in Florida. :)