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Jul. 8th, 2006 06:20 am movies

Yojimbo (1961 #123 http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0055630/ )
I liked this movie a lot. Not only did it give a great story of an anti-hero, loner type, but it is obviously the insperation behind many western movies and also Anime, especially Cowboy Bebop.
The story shows how Sanjuro Kuwabatake, an ex-samurai, takes to a town and plays two differnt warring gangs in order to make the biggest profit to himself. In the end he finds redemtion and shows that the "old ways" are not dead.
This movie would have, however, been greatly enhanced by color and some carefull editing. You can tell they try and set up some great atmosphere shots that lack any beauty. all you see is brown dust. Perhaps one generation to early.
Overall, I give it a 7.5 out of 10.
My wife and I are watching the IMDB's top 250 films of all time. We draw them at random and then review them. Here are the first three.

The Best Years of Our Lives (1946 #175 http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0036868/ )
This won the Acadamy Award for Best Picture in 1946 along with 6 other Oscars.
It is the story of three World War II vets who come home to a world they don't understand. The three struggle with issues ranging from dealing with newly aquired disablilities, feelings of worthlessness, and understanding the true role the war played in their lives. It also tracks the lives of their families, especially the women who love them.
This is the best movie I've seen in a while. After so many movies dedicated to "The Greatist Generation" it's nice to see a more... accurate picture painted of them. The movie is heat warming and horrifying. It makes your heart ache and soar. I loved it.
I give it a perfect 10 out of 10.

L.A. Confidential (1997 #55 http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0119488/ )

This film noir picture is the story of... well... cops in L.A. who have to untangle a nasty web of lies that surround the world of organized crime.

Probably one of the best cop films in the last 20 years. It is full of suspense, action, and crazy twists and turns. With Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, and Kim Basinger, and Danny DeVito (along with tons of other great actors) you know it's gonna be good.
I give it an 8.5 out of 10.

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Feb. 1st, 2006 08:04 am

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Oct. 15th, 2005 03:04 pm DONE WITH FIRST DRAFT!!!

I'm kinda freaking out here. I just finnished with the first draft of my first novel. I think the title will be "The Spirit of Humanity" but I don't know.

Here are the final stats:

40 Chapters plus an afterword
337 Pages
101,968 Words
1,114 KB

Now I'm going to write some short stories for six weeks or so, then I'll go back and revise my first draft.

I freakin rule!!!!


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Oct. 14th, 2005 04:17 pm

My story progression by the numbers:

37 Chapters
321 Pages
97,459 Words
1,064 KB

I think I may finish with the first draft tomorow...

I can't belive I'm this far along in the story. It sounds strange but the characters are really taking me for a ride. I love it.


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Oct. 13th, 2005 11:02 am

My book by the numbers

34 Chapters
299 Pages
91,711 Words
1000 KB

I have a good routine now. I write for at least three hours every day. Life couldn't be better.


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Oct. 11th, 2005 10:39 pm

my book by the numbers:

30 Chapters
270 Pages
83,289 Words
907 KB


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Sep. 24th, 2005 01:10 am

I am feeling FREAKIN FANTASTIC!!!! I have just wrote some of the best stuff I can imagine.

My book update, by the numbers:
28 Chapters
251 Pages
77819 Words
847 KB

I'm gonna finish this sucker and then I'm gonna have it published and its gonna be awsome!!!!!

I feel so... so alive. This is a rush like I've never felt in my life about anything.

*breaths* I don't think I'll be able to sleep tonight!!!


Current Mood: determineddetermined

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Sep. 22nd, 2005 12:35 pm The Wife of Bath

Joshua Huntsman
English 3220
Fulfilling the Stereotype
I am a pale male and have difficulty understanding the struggle of being a minority. As I read “The Wife of Bath’s Prologue” there is one thing that seems to make no sense to me. The Wife does not like to be treated like one of the wicked wife’s in Jenkyn’s books, but she seems to fulfill all the stereotypes that are included. She seems to be, at the same time a champion for women’s rights and a poster child for the chauvinistic majority. This paper will serve as an opportunity to explore this phenomenon.
The most obvious example of The Wife illustrating, at the same time, woman’s rights and a proof of a stereotype is her talk of marriage and sex. Religious doctrine of the time painted women in the red light of temptresses and depraved sexual animals. They also taught that the most holy and pure women were virgins. This presents a very sticky situation for women. Certainly an appreciation for sex, and the natural consequences of sex, motherhood, would be a point of honor, but at the same time a woman who does try and achieve this goal fits nicely into the depraved sexual animal category. Dammed if you do and dammed if you don’t.
The Wife takes a very interesting turn in this situation. In the opening she says, “Wo that is in marriage” (line 3). This “Wo” which could very easily mean the wo for women who, as a wife, would be forced to give up their sacred virginity and become a lower form of woman. Through The Wife’s Prologue, however, she makes it clear that most of the “wo” is suffered at the hands of her husbands. Such an ironic turnaround is at the same time feminist and anti feminist as she has the power of the marriage, but she gains the power by living up to the negative stereotypes of the time. The same might be said of an inner city black youth gaining power by living a life of crime. They rise above their station, but they further cement the ideas that plagued him in his youth.
The Wife was first married at the age of thirteen (line 4). This age may hold some clues as to the situation she found herself in. Even with the differences of our times to Chaucer, one can assume that the marriage of a thirteen year old, especially to men who “were goode men, and riche, and old” (line 197) did not include much of a choice to the woman. In this way she was robbed of her chance to fulfill the higher calling of a holy virgin before she got to choose. In this state then she is forced into either a life of constant inferiority or else fighting for equality with whatever tool she has available. She obviously chose to fight. It is hard for me to see any other real choice for The Wife of Bath.
The problems that face The Wife are many of the same problems women of today face. There is a double standard in society when it comes to sex. A non-sexual woman is considered cold and a prude, while a sexual woman is considered a slut. Again, dammed if you do and dammed if you don’t.
With The Wife’s character, Chaucer seems to paint the inherit problem that face women, and really any minority that falls under the microscope of unfair stereotypes. They can either live down or live according to the stereotype. I find it really interesting, and eye-opening, that such problems that are faced today are at least as old as literature.

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Sep. 21st, 2005 09:40 am lesson plan for teaching antigone

Joshua Huntsman

Lesson Plan for Antigone

This lesson will take place at the end of a course on dramatic texts. The purpose of this lesson will be to help the students in the specific areas where they are struggling. This will be accomplished by having a real production of Antigone. This will not only give them real experience and a deeper understanding of drama, but it will also push them a bit out of their comfort zone to discover talents they may not have known about.

1. Divide the students according to their need. For example, students who have struggled with the idea of characterization can be the actors, students who have struggled with historical context can be prop designers and costumers, students who have trouble with mood and theme can be set directors or light and sound techs. Students may also be grouped with other students who are more proficient in these areas.
2. Students can also be assigned according to general classroom performance. For example, if a student is shy and hasn’t talked out much, they could help direct. Students who are better expressing themselves through art or wood work could help others create set pieces.
3. The teacher will not direct the play, that is the student’s job, but they will direct the students to reach a deeper understanding in their particular deficiency.
4. After the performance the students will write an essay explaining the process of fulfilling their particular roll in the play.
5. The teacher will hand back, along with the graded essay, an individual report on the progress that they have seen the student go through.

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Sep. 18th, 2005 11:55 pm

Joshua Huntsman
English 3210
Ugly People in the Hands of an Angry Beautiful Society
Imagine how it must have felt like to be a sinner in the middle of a Puritan community. Not just any sinner either, a sinner whose sin is so obvious that there is no hiding it. Indeed, with Puritan’s belief in the total depravity of man, most everyone must have felt like this. Everyone was so scared of their owns sins they found sins in others.
Today, with issues like plastic surgery and eating disorders on the top of many people’s minds, we can perhaps understand what the Puritans went through. Instead of Christianity as our religion, we now worship the Beautiful. This paper will examine the text Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God and draw comparisons and differences between the early Puritan obsession with a perfect soul to today’s obsession with a perfect body.
The first similarity that the two periods share is the belief that sin is wide spread. Edwards said that humans are, “… always exposed to sudden unexpected destruction” (Edwards 498). By this he means that all mankind are always in danger of being thrust to Hell. The Angry God he talks about that, “The strongest have no power to resist Him, nor can any deliver out of His hands” (Edwards 499) can easily be seen today as the draw of the temptations of fatty food and a leisurely lifestyle. If you believe what Edwards says then you believe that the whole world is surrounded by sin and will be dammed at any moment. If you believe what people today say about obesity then you believe that the whole world is surrounded by fattening foods and that anyone of us will die of a heart attack if we are not very careful. The universal natures of Evil and Fat are mirror images of each other that cross the dimension of time.
Another connection between Evil and Fat are the constant reminders of the horrendous consequences attached to such lifestyles. Imagine for a moment that the following quote is not spoken by Edwards, but by Dr. Phil and the subject is not hell, but life as a fat person. “It is everlasting wrath. It would be dreadful to suffer this fierceness and wrath of Almighty God (or a beauty obsessed world) one moment; but you must suffer it to all eternity.” Perhaps the dramatic attitude seems out of place in today’s world, but a simple change of context, drama in place, and you have daytime self-help television.
One major difference between the attitude of image today and the attitude of sin in the past is the idea of empowerment. Edwards paints humans as small bugs to be trampled on under God’s foot. We have no choice in the matter. Even the best we can do is not good enough for God’s attention. Only through the intervention of Jesus Christ are we able to hope to be saved. How different this is to the attitude of today’s fat people everywhere. While they share the idea that being fat is not their choice, (like being born in sin perhaps) they are always being told that they can take control of their own lives. Not only is a person told they are able to live a healthy happy life, they have various options to chose from to make that life a reality. This empowerment, perhaps a leftover from Calvinist movements, says that it is the responsibility of each person to make their lives a good as it can be, to stay away from the evil and temptations around them and always strive to be like the gods around them who are already skinny and healthy.
While it may be hard to see direct corrilation between the Puritan obsession with perfection in the Spirit to today’s obsession with perfection in the Body, it feels like it is cut from the same bolt. Like cousins, their differences are the exception to the rule. Whether or not the Angry God will burn the sinners in hell, or whether or not the fat people have no place in society, the attitude for both of them remains the same.

Works Cited
Baym, Nina. The Norton Anthology of American Literature, Volume A, Sixth Edition, W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., New York, 2003

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