Sunday, October 30, 2011

Halloween and my animosity towards costume parties


Today’s my least favorite holiday of the year. Maybe it has got something to do with horror movies in the cable and brightly lit Jack-O-Lanterns that would have been better off as pumpkin soup. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate Halloween, I just don’t like it. But I do hate horror movies especially gory ones. It’s not that I scare easily, it’s just I don’t find it entertaining to see a movie that’s trying hard to scare people with camera effects and bad lighting.

One thing I’ve also noticed about Halloweens are the parties that include costume parties. There’s nothing wrong with them, and I don’t object them but as far as I’m concerned, Halloween was supposed to be spooky and scary. So I don’t see the point of dressing kids as fairies, water hydrants or zoo animals. I think it would probably better to create a separate costume holiday. That way, you can be whatever you want to be without looking out of place, because seriously, whenever a Halloween party comes and the partygoers are advised to be in their spooky/scary costumes, you’ll never fail to see a butterfly or a fairy!

Anyway, I think I’m starting to sound like a Halloween hater so I might as well end this post before I end up writing things that I consider inappropriate for Halloween…just kidding.
Enjoy your costume parties!

-Den

Friday, October 28, 2011

My best buddy Queen Victoria

For starters, the title was just a joke. There is no way a real best buddy of the Queen could write a silly blog post on this blog. (or maybe...)

Second, this blog post was not written as a satire for the great Queen. So if you expected otherwise, you are very much welcome to leave this blog.

So, as the title goes, this post is about the great Queen Victoria. I have been introduced to her (though not literally) by my being a fan of Emily Blunt. I have always admired the young actress ever since I saw her in The Devil wears Prada. Watching her play as the Young Queen solidified her status in my top five favorite Hollywood actress of all time, which includes Meryl Streep, (of course!) Jodie Foster, Natalie Portman and Cobie Smulders a.k.a Agent Maria Hill though she is better known as Robin Scherbatsky or Robib Sparkles. (Let's go the mall everybody!)

Anyway, back to the topic. I have always loved watching English period dramas which made me love The Young Victoria at once. I know it had got something to do with Emily Blunt being the main cast and the handsome Rupert Friend as the Prince Consort, but the movie was just great! There were some historical errors as well like Prince Albert taking a bullet from saving the Queen and Sir John Conroy showing up in Buckingham Palace after Victoria turned Queen, but it's just a movie! You can't honestly expect them to be accurate.

Overall, watching the movie had made me curious about the real Victoria, which led me to researching her on Wikipedia. (I know!)

Hopefully though, I was able to download an e-book copy of her biography written by Giles Strachey and another one by Grace Greenwood. What I read satisfied my curiousity and surprised me at the same time.

I have always marveled with Victoria and Albert's love story. I actually thought that it was too good to be true. Only to realize that Albert didn't really loved Victoria romantically as I imagined. Actually, Victoria idolized him, which was actually not real love.

As I read the biographies further, I was even surprised on how the English society had treated Albert. Sure he was a foreigner, and that the power was held by his wife, but they should at least give him credit for his accomplishments! All throughout his life, save for some Prime Ministers and people who actually knew him, the Prince Consort was treated as an outsider.

Victoria on the other hand was not exactly how I expected her. I am aware of the famous saying, "don't judge the book by it's covers," but I thought that Victoria was an ice queen due to her photographs, (I'm not implying that she's scary or anything, but she looked like a stern disciplinarian... which I think she also was) but having read her life (supposing it wasn't greatly exaggerated) made me realize that she was a good and loving Queen to her subjects. It actually made me want to return to the past and meet Her Majesty!

I am actually only halfway through Greenwood's book (though I've finished Strachey's the other day) and I'm hoping to learn more about the Queen. So with that, I'm going to resume my reading and I'll have to bid adieu for now. (I really suck at closing a blog post)



-Den