Monday, July 31

Mel's beliefs, my lies

Brian at the Banty Rooster asks "Is Mel Done in Hollywood?"

Within it, he makes a lot of good points. I thought about posting the following on his blog comments but realized its long enough that I probably shouldn't take his space there.

Brian says "Actually, alcohol doesn't make you lie; it reduces your inhibitions so that you actually end up saying what you really do think, but were afraid to say." I don't take issue with Brian's point; I just empathize a lot with Gibson.

Presently I've been struggling with a lie that I've been believing. Oh, Satan has a good hold on me with this lie. It pops up in a myriad of differently shaped fruit. I believe it, I keep it, I stroke this lie/idol like Frodo does the Ring. I battle others with it.

I've told my mom, my sister, BLB and GPB this lie. I've punched them in the gut with it.

Do I believe this lie? Yes. As a functioning atheist, I "believe" this lie is the best way for me to interpret the world.

Do I believe this lie? In a spiritually 'sober' state, no. I don't. I know for a fact that it is not true (hey! The definition of a lie!) and that I'm spewing filth from my heart.

And so, it's that part of me that can appreciate Mel's saying "I acted like a person completely out of control .... and said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable." Do I think Gibson is that nuanced in his knowledge of heart issues? Mmmm, maybe not. But maybe he is. Why assume that he doesn't have a wise spiritual mentor in his life?

I think the thing that makes me smile is that God doesn't let us go when we sin. He finds us. How many alcohol/drug-hazed celebrities drive and don't get caught? Gibson's fallen, and he was caught - Isn't God good to prevent him from falling further?

I take joy in knowing that I too am caught in my sin (believing the lie), and from my sin.

Thursday, July 20

Review of "Alfie"

I watched “Alfie” last night. “Oh, the show about the alien?” the very nice girl at the video place asked me, when I was trying to find it. “No…the one with Jude Law.”

I grew up on “ALF,” the TV show, and frankly, it would have probably been a better use of my time.

Alfie was, in a word, disappointing. It was really close to being an ok movie (although it had way too much sex – it’s rated R) but decided it wanted to be a contemplative movie instead of romantic. To be fair, the ending is much more true to life (he doesn’t end up with any of the woman he’s dating/doing, but finds that he’s unhappy). I suppose that’s the same in the original “Alfie,” with Michael Caine. Haven’t seen that one, not sure if I will.

I thought he’d end up with Julie, Marisa Tomei’s character, but I was wrong. Thought he’d end up with the girl he gets preggers. Nope. The beautiful, depressed girl that’s in need of help? Well, we all saw that break up comin’.

So the positives for watching Alfie? Not a whole lot. It’s a somewhat interesting character study; except it’s very easy to see why he’s in the life he’s in. He even ‘figures’ it out at the end, kind of.

Why is he unhappy? He’s selfish and he chooses sin. Would he or others call it that? No, but his actions are always blatantly manipulative, self-centered, and God-ignoring. He has no idea how to be kind to others, and he doesn’t think about the ramifications of his actions.

Sin never leads to a place of happiness. It always ends in hardship, depression, anger or sadness. Sin is only redeemed by God, when we’re repentant (as I learn daily.)

So, Alfie, back to the Video Store early for you. I’ll get my $1 credit, and look forward to the movie I originally went in to rent: “She’s the Man.”


Thursday, July 6

Quote on Thursday

Do you wish people to think well of you? Don't speak well of yourself.
Blaise Pascal

(Frankly, I posted it because it's a good reminder to myself)

Monday, July 3

The Devil and Da Vinci

Now that I've finished my class (thanks to all of you who have prayed and asked about it - I did well on my last test, and the final grade hasn't been released yet), I've been reading a bit of fiction.

First, I picked up the DaVinci Code. The beginning of it, I wasn't that surprised at (you saw all the shots in the movie ads) the middle was good, and actually intriguing. The End, well. hmmm. See, the problem- as I see it - for Brown was that he needed to 'end' it, but he obviously couldn't write a book that overthrew the Catholic Church (or the evangelical church, though he didn't really ever talk about the evangelical church.) Doing so would border on fantasy, and his entire diatribe sections of the book ("Jesus and Mary Magdalene were lovers, and Peter the apostle was jealous, and the Catholic Church organized the best smear campaign EVER") would have had to been disregarded in the real world. Something Dan Brown doesn't want, because he's professed that he believes that those ideas are actually facts and should be believed.

So, he pulled the story lines together and put a personal feel to it. The ending deserves a "duuuhhh. Knew that was going to happen." Really, his foreshadowing wasn't very nuanced. But all in all, it was an ok read, except for the parts where I had to put the book down I was so mad at what he was saying about Jesus. But outside of that...

Oh, and you can read the last 3 chapters by skimming the first sentence of every paragraph and completely understand the entire conclusion.

Now I'm reading "The Devil wears Prada." I saw the movie clips one night and thought, "Now there's a movie I'd like to see Meryl Streep in." So when we were in Barnes and Noble we picked it up for 20% off. Lots of "New York" swearing, but overall a really fun read. The author, Lauren Weisberger, is a pretty decent author. The book is a narrative of the personal assistant to the most important woman in fashion publishing - the Devil, Miranda Priestly. Andrea, the main character, is actually an English/writing graduate and wants to work for New Yorker Magazine. To get where she wants, she takes a job as the personal assistant to 'Miranda' and endures - with much sarcasm and rolling of the eyes - the world of fashion and Miranda's unreasonable, endless demands.

And really, Weisberger does a magnificent job of having the reader feel the same feelings of bewilderment and dread Andrea feels every time she encounters the devil.

I'm only in the middle of it, but it's a good romp, if you're not offended by swearing and the frequent gay characters (she's working in the fashion industry, "after all." The homosexual agenda is missing, though, and the gay characters are primarily for humor). I'm looking forward (kind of) to seeing the movie. Looking forward to it, except they can't possibly make it as good as the book, but they definitely cast Anne Hathaway and Meryl Streep perfectly, so maybe they won't butcher the entire story.
With octaves of a mystic depth and height