Tuesday, January 28, 2003

the last tango in cambridge.

thank you, thank you, for always being there to catch me.

Saturday, January 25, 2003

hey... too tired to write. just going to post some pictures representative of my fabulous intersession so far. captions pending, promise.

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

last night, in a celebratory spirit to commemorate the termination of all my exams (yaya!), i treated myself to a film at the harvard film archive. exotic and independent films alike convene in that cozy space in the basement of the carpenter center; i've seldom gone to watch films there on my own initiative, with the exception of last spring when i experienced the surrealism cine series featured in conjuction with my literature and arts core with professor susan rubin suleiman. right now, the archive is in the midst of a european film extravaganza, featuring the newest and best imports from across the atlantic. i'm the sort of person enthralled with italian for beginners or mostly martha, so understandably, i'm psyched. bring on the subtitles, i say!

here's the synopsis from the archive website:

Girl (Meisje)
Directed by Doroth�e Van Den Berghe
Belgium/Netherlands/France 2002, 35mm, color, 93 min.
With Charlotte Vanden Eynde, Els Dottermans, Frieda Pittoors
Flemish with English subtitles

Muriel, a working-class girl, decides to quit her job at the factory where her mother has worked most of her life and to end her relationship with her boyfriend. She moves to Brussels hoping to find work in an art museum and to engage in more exciting romantic pursuits than small-town life can provide. Van Den Berghe offers a sensitive and strikingly realistic portrait of her protagonist, played with quiet resolve by Charlotte Vanden Eynde. Equally compelling are the portraits of the girl�s older roommate, an aspiring singer who desperately wants to have a child, and the mother back home, who sees her daughter taking chances with life that she herself never dared. Van den Berghe raises thoughtful questions about female identity and the contemporary divide between urban and provincial life.

my friend karl (who was hurrahing his last exams as well) accompanied me last night. it's amazing how much americans dwell on nudity, when europeans have such a casual approach to it. in this bruxellian film, you have scenes of people urinating, masturbating, naked in a medical setting, showering, and everything in between, yet observed with a camera whose interpretation is incredibly nonchalant and ordinary. it's not to say that europeans perversely relish in the human body; rather, it's only that they apparently don't have the same hangups that occur in hollywood politics. american and european culture differ in so many ways, psychologically and artistically, and this film particularly accentuated those contrasts.

plot-wise, i could sympathize with muriel in many ways. last summer, when i was living independently in boston, i felt similar phases of loneliness, variable direction, and frustration in an unfamiliar, overwhelming urban setting. from involuntarily subjecting myself to my roommates' love lives to missing my family back at home, the underlying tumult of finding yourself within the complexities of everything is crucial. it made me happy to know i could understand the occasion bits of french spoken in the film, and the guy who played oskar (matthias schoenaerts) was definite eye candy throughout.

after a cappuccino at starbucks and a hummus snacky-snack, i was fully sated, fully pleased, to have finished the semester with such aplomb.

Sunday, January 19, 2003

liu ming derh.
how will i ever understand you...

Saturday, January 18, 2003

yesterday i indulged a little bit in the mit mystery hunt. it's basically a glorified (not to mention horrifically intricate) puzzle, reminiscent of a scavenger hunt. you solve countless mind-bending brainteasers that the 'headquarters' (the winners of last year's hunt who wrote this year's puzzles) send you every 3 hours around the clock from friday afternoon to sunday (so, no sleep; lots of stockpiled food and sleepingbags), and although your immediate goals are to solve the puzzles quickly, ultimately the main main goal is to be the first to find a coin on campus. (yikes!) i believe it's more difficult than your most layered nightmare. anyway, jim and i were only there for 3 hrs or so with one team (math camp alumni), but we (and i'm really proud because i, among all the smarties, had the correct inspiration which led to the solution) solved a puzzle (the only puzzle out of six solved in the timespan we were there)! seriously, all my years doing crosswords and word games and things really played a part. the puzzle is a bit complicated to explain, so i've provided a photo (and evidence of solution!) of the puzzle. the difficulty mainly lies in the fact that there isn't an explicit question for an explicit answer. all we get is the little blurb at the top and these sets of jumbled words. that's all. it's up to the players to figure out what exactly is to be done. once you see how you're supposed to manipulate the words, it's not that bad, but up to then it's just a fearless struggle to figure out what exactly is going on. anyway, it was amazing :) :) :) :) i was so excited that i was yelling and jumping up and down and stuff when we kept solving more parts of the puzzle. i haven't felt that way in a long time, this creative rush of seeing through the mess to find clarity. through a process full of hysterics and unix thesauri, we worked together to the finish. it was the best feeling. it's incredibly geeky, getting so excited about a puzzle! (by the way, the final solution, after hours of manipulating the words, is CHALET. isn't that crazy???)

the other picture is silly; one of the puzzles was sort of a scavenger hunt, and this is a photograph of "3 people not touching any non-living object, the floor, or the walls." this picture is priceless because i dont believe jim will ever be seen carrying me ever ever again. hahah. the funniest part is the strain on his face. well, i'm not the lightest person in the world! (and neither is he, for that matter, ha ha.)

aaaa. now to begin studying, i promise!

portfolio update: hro posters are finally up. (yippee!) more portfolio-related stuff should be uploaded for your perusal pleasures in the next week or so.

i have just spent over an hour, lying in my bed, tangled amongst lavender sheets and consciously imagining every minute as it descended upon me and left. my mind is as white and shiny as the walls.

maybe it's withdrawal symptoms from drinking inordinant amounts of tea in the last few days. perhaps it's the knowing that i'm freer than i ever dreamed possible. i believe it's the little snippets of sadness and hope that swim and settle in my stomach, warm sips for tomorrow and a shell for today.

then again, it might be because i have one more exam left that i have yet to study for. fie to the core curriculum!

Friday, January 17, 2003

gold sparkles, foamed milk, and suede.

so much at stake. it's amazing what lengths you'll go to...

i'm sooo proud of my work done in VES40a, chris killip's class, an introduction to black and white photography. our final projects are currently being exhibited in the basement of the carpenter center; it's terribly exciting to see your work pinned to the wall, staring onlookers in the face, with the artist's name printed underneath. all the sweat and tears and dry hands and smelling like fix in the darkroom has equated themselves with perfect, matte, beautiful prints. all the madness suddenly and miraculously seems to have been worth it all.

i'm in the middle of scanning all my prints from the semester... take a look at what's up so far! all the photographs are taken with 35mm pentax z1000, ilford 400 iso b/w film, and printed on RC 8"x10". refresh with abandon...

Thursday, January 16, 2003

i've just realized we're all the same. we all make the same mistakes, have the same fears, cause identical pains for others that in turn strike us deeply from another direction. cyclical. memoryless. pull on this string, because you will never be caught with the short end.

i cannot believe this. my entire entry has been whisked to the depths of infinite disappearance. how can i forgive you, you unstable, unpredictable, balky blogging tool?

if you had read my written post, the sadness succumbs to truer depths.

i'm too tired to argue. what is left is mystery; beauty, ephemerality. art will pass and be forgotten, but my thoughts, my layers, my love, and my tears are evermore.

you will have regret not knowing what those words contained. i shall regret not having the voice to express those exact words a second time. you, and your balancing plastic straws, your blueberries, your tea-stained fingertips. i am situated at the antipodes, encased in gold, draped with silk, and showered with needles, yet i still long for what i lack. the horizon floods with your scent, yet i am but a tangerine. i find the climate unsuitable.

the last line read as thus:

"i wish to touch your eyebrows, for they remind me of caterpillars. please indulge me by closing your eyes..."

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

who you are is what you love,
not what loves you.

charlie kaufman's adaptation

Sunday, January 12, 2003

he tells me
of all the numbers
two is his favorite.
unassuming, even
'it's the first number.'

one stands alone.
to wander among the irrationals
and lose itself
among the search for the first.
why do i prefer sixty-seven
and he, two?

would be the last
to fit inside
broken stems and dimpled skin
of unwashed fruits

stacked, one by one
a mesh of chartreuse
gleaming apples i cannot count
a soundless sublimation
towards a trembling height
of unseen emptiness and
asphyxiatingly beautiful
bottoms nestled into indentations
of tops and broken stems
fitting so perfectly like
puzzle pieces, convex
and concave do the tips of green
connect and hold fast to each other
with abnormal vectors
and gravitational naivete.
stack connect and climb
up up up
i'm on my toes to
stretch my reach
eyes closed, breathlessly
searching for what i
may be among
the cracks in the wall
rust in my throat
facing palms
and the inevitable tumble
which commences with the

i tried.

warm and encompassing
to bind and liberate within
taut loops and not
understand nor reconcile
the unspoken.
but smiling nonetheless

revealed, i can remove
myself from the colorless
and into the green
clean and generous
you paint me
two times my size

to float amorphously
through the shape
state of turning
welding weaning
myself from the smelting
i cannot resist and
cool inside-out.


the flute, a pan
in the forest running toward
the lake viewing wit
cleverness in the water
wink wink dis
the melody ceases for
i retrieve what you have
left behind as a
gift of unintentional


behind eyelids blinding
light proves pink
wet blood swims to
cause sickness of motion
'you look a bit green'
after a mile of
wanting to turn back after the
thistle had been buried
yet soft green -- more
delicious than buttercream --
silences rouged cheeks

i cannot begin nor stop
this stolen song
watching the fall of