Wednesday, October 19, 2005

So, one thing about DVDs that kind of sucks is that if they are subtitled and you are bored, you can't just have the subtitles on and watch it at twice the speed if you read fast. This is because the subtitles are syncronized with the audio, not the video. And with this fact, another aspect of Douglas Coupland's writing, one of the few things I held onto, ages poorly.

Speaking of books, did I ever mention here about how The Unbearable Lightness Of Being pretty much blows? And by pretty much, I mean I recommend you don't read it. Like if someone told you it was good, just ignore them and read The Book Of Laughter And Forgetting instead. That one is not only shorter, it's also about much more. Also, the asides that are kind of philosophical actually have a point, and amount to something. They're a part of the book, because so much of the book reads like asides and digressions. With The Unbearable Lightness Of Being, that stuff is just a part of the book's voice, and so the stuff that's said (like "metaphors are dangerous, because a single metaphor can give birth to love") not only doesn't mean anything (seriously, did that line I paraphrased affect you or strike you as true in any way?) but makes the book as pretentious as its title. I read that book awhile ago. I'm kind of reading books now, but the stuff I'm reading isn't really especially compelling so I'm kind of not.

Speaking of books, there's a top 100 English language novels written since 1923 up at and maybe it'll be in the magazine. It's a good list, I would say, although it's incredibly nerdy. Not only is Watchmen on it, the lone "graphic novel" (they're also called comics) but so's The Lord Of The Rings, Phillip K. Dick's Ubik, William Gibson, and Neal Stephenson. (None of these I've read, actually.) This is in addition to such stuff as 1984, Slaughterhouse Five, and A Clockwork Orange. It's a good list- both Pynchon novels I've read make it, as does Catch-22 and One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest. Also Lolita. Flann O'Brien's At Swim-Two-Birds made it, which I haven't read, but should.

Here's the link, actually, so I don't just name all the stuff I've either read or just like that's on there:

It's a really nerdy list. So, I'm happy with it, it reflects my tastes better than most. But it's not necessarily the list I'd read... It does a good job taking my tastes and the canon and making it all seem seamless. There's books on there I should read. (The Sot-Weed Factor- I should read more Barth just as a rule because I liked The End Of The Road.) (Maybe I should read Infinite Jest- I've heard like one bad thing, and that was from someone talking about someone else who'd read it, not their actual reaction. The "year of the Depends undergarment" thing doesn't make me laugh. And I think David Foster Wallace looks kind of an ass in photos, but that's true for most, if not all, authors.)

Oh, and Ulysses doesn't make it, which is funny because it's something I've got a bookmark in the middle (not the very middle... closer to the beginning than the actual middle) and don't know when I'll finish because I'm not feeling it.

EDIT: It actually didn't make it because it came out in 1922. That's funny for other reasons.

In other news, I watched Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior, a movie where people get kicked and blown up and physically fucked up in all kinds of ways, and thought it was awesome. I fast-forwarded through most of the beginning. (Without reading any subtitles, as established earlier.) It's really good. You know what's not good? Oldboy. That's not kung-fu, but it's Korean and supposedly fucked-up but no, it's just total bullshit.

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