Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The State of the Oscars and the State of the Union

So, today was an exciting day, despite the fact that it's a Tuesday, which means that I still have two more days of classes left until the weekend. The Oscar nominations are out and the President's State of the Union's address was tonight. I, along with apparently the rest of the world, was pretty surprised at Christopher Nolan's exclusion from the Best Directing category. I thought Inception was a great movie, and while I am unsure about who I would trade from the the five that were nominated (Darren Aronofsky for Black Swan, David Russell for The Fighter, Tom Hooper for The King's Speech, David Fincher for The Social Network , and Joel and Ethan Coen for True Grit), I assumed Nolan would get an Oscar nod for directing what may have been one of the most challenging movies of the year. He's been snubbed from the Oscars before (Dark Knight, I'm looking at you), but I wouldn't have called this one. My other disappointment was that Andrew Garfield was not nominated for Supporting Actor for The Social Network.
I mean, look at him.

My conspiracy theory is that the Academy saw him bungle his presentation at the Golden Globes and was worried he'd mess up his acceptance speech on the off chance he actually won the thing. Other thoughts. I'm sincerely hoping Christian Bale does not win the Supporting Actor category he's nominated in, because I do not think I could stand having to look at the terrifying beard he was sporting during the Golden Globes during his acceptance speech. Toy Story 3 has become the third animated movie in history to also get a Best Picture nomination. Toy Story 3 was not the best picture of the year, but its nomination for Best Picture is quite an accomplishment.

The State of the Union address was tonight. I learned that the Union is apparently full of all sorts of hope and change and that Biden's mouth looks remarkably like a line almost all of the time. Obama's defense of the health care plan in economic terms was particularly interesting, and it was something that probably angered a bunch of people. Rhetoric on fiscal restraint seems like a standard for the State of the Union address, but it's good to hear it anyway. Without the policy changes to back it up, though, the President's speech means nothing. We'll see if the interesting seating arrangement might have made anyone listen to it a bit more.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

On the start of a new semester and possibly some other randomness.

So, the a new semester has started up once again, and, due to a very conveniently placed "snow" day, I have only had one of each of my classes. In case you're interested, here's a breakdown of my schedule for this semester: (If you're not interested, here's a picture of a puppy for you to look at instead.)

Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory. This class may be one of my most challenging for the semester. It's one of those that the grade depends entirely upon your exams. 25% each for the two midterms, and 50% for the final. Then there's the fact that this class is supposed to depend on an awful lot more algebra than I'm used to in econ classes. We'll see how it goes.

Arthurian Legend and Literature. Another one that may be relatively difficult, considering I know almost nothing about English history. I know that someone built a wall somewhere, and that Romans may have been involved at some point, but besides that, I'm pretty clueless. It's going to be a lot of reading, which should all be really interesting; I just hope that the discussions won't leave me completely behind.

Freedom in Rome. If the first class is any indication, I'm going to absolutely love this class. Dr. Fears' teaching style is pretty off-putting to some, as he doesn't lecture, he just tells a story. But it's super fascinating stuff, and I love the way he teaches, so I can see this becoming one of my favorite classes pretty easily.

General Anthropology. Online course. Beginning level anthropology. I can't imagine this will be too difficult. I'm pretty comfortable with the online format, so as long as I can get past the difficulties that may arise from that, I should have little to worry about with this one.

Intro to Human Relations. Another online course. This one's upper division, so it may be a bit more challenging than my anthro online. I'm hoping to do more with HR courses, so this is my test run into the area. I'm hoping that it'll be something I really enjoy, so I can make this a focus of my major. *fingers crossed*

Yoga. Yes, I'm taking yoga. Yes, it's for credit. Be jealous.

So, there's my semester in less six paragraphs. This is my first semester to have more than one upper division course. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with the two online courses. If I'm able to stay organized, it shouldn't present too many more challenges than classes in the classroom would. If you know me, you know that can be a big "if." I've got my calendar all ready to keep up with the flood of due dates and exam times, my phone's to-do list is updated, and my desk is cleaner than it's been since I moved in; I think I'm off to a pretty good start.

In other news: my break was slightly hectic, with little time spent sitting around and recovering from the fall semester. The mission trip was amazing, but more on that later.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New year, new blog.

I absolutely love to read blogs. My Google Reader is currently populated with almost 20 blogs, most of which are regularly updated. And I check it every. single. day. The blogs I follow range from movie blogs to craft blogs to comic strips. I love to have a little insight into the minds of others. But I'm not an open person myself; I'm just not a blogger. Not yet, anyway. If you really cared what I was thinking about, wouldn't you just ask me about it? Is it up to me to put all of my opinions out into cyberspace for you, the reader, to consume? We'll see. We're going to try this blogging thing out for a little while. I'll try to vary what I write about. I enjoy writing movie reviews, as my upbringing contained enough Mystery Science Theater 3000 to make me appreciate a good scathing critique of a movie (and I'm sure all of my friends would prefer I write down my comments instead of commenting aloud MST3K style). I occasionally dabble in cooking or baking, so you can expect a few recipes (or the grisly details of my failures). My crafting experience is rather limited right now, but my craft supplies are almost endless, so if I find anything interesting, you might read about that, too. And then every so often, you might find out about the ordinary life and times of an everyday college student. Maybe you'll find it enlightening, entertaining, or at least worth a few minutes of your time on occasion.