Fashion Friday 1/31/14

Remember when I said that Fashion Friday would be back after a hiatus, but only occasionally?  Well, it’s baaaaack… (but only occasionally).

We’ve had some seriously wintry weather down here in the south lately.  You might have noticed?  Now, in Houston we’ve been luckier than in Atlanta — oh, those unfortunate folks! — but it’s been sort of intense here.  We’ve had TWO Continue reading “Fashion Friday 1/31/14”

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Periodic Sappho’s Torque Best Commenter Awards

A little over a year ago, I earned a Best Commenter Award from the lovely SJ and Meg over at Snobbery.  It was a delightful moment because I hadn’t been part of the blogosphere long but felt like I had, at least, done something useful enough to connect with other people.  And without a doubt, connections with other people, especially writers and avid readers, has been one of the best parts about having a blog.  I have loved that.

Anyway, I thought this concept was fun and paid the award forward, as I was supposed to do, and it occurred to me that I could continue having a Best Commenter Awards recognition on my own blog regularly.  I don’t know how often it will be — annual?  semi-annual?  quarterly? — but I’ve come up with my own badge and my own set of interview questions (with SJ’s blessing, since the format, though not its content, is shamelessly stolen from Snobbery’s awards).

So here’s how this works:  I will list the award recipients below along with the interview the recipients are asked answer.  We at Sappho’s Torque love and appreciate all our commenters, and winning this most excellent honor is based, very simply, on how much one participates in this blog.  All recipients should please answer the interview questions in the comments section of this post, then post the Best Commenter Awards on their blogs and choose their top 5 commenters to pass the honor and the interview along to, if they so choose, and thanks for playing.  (If they do not so choose, well, boo.  Frowny face.)

So without further ado, here they are!

best commenter badge

Our top 5 commenters (and their blogs, because this time the top 5 are all bloggers as well) are…

*  kvennarad

*  sj

*  David Jón Fuller

*  The Byronic Man

*  laine

Congratulations!

And here are the interview questions:

  1. What was the first food you ever learned how to make?
  2. What’s your favorite movie, and why?
  3. Do you own a melon baller?
  4. DC or Marvel or indie?
  5. If you had the time to be a novelist, would you want to be?
  6. What’s your favorite fashion accessory?  Would you be interested in sharing it with us on a Fashion Friday post?
  7. What is the best book you’ve ever read that you really didn’t enjoy while you were reading it?
  8. What are you listening to today?
  9. Do you remember when and how you first discovered Sappho’s Torque?  Will you please tell us the story?
  10. What do you want to be when you grow up?
  11. What’s your preferred variety of Munchkin card?
  12. Complete this lyric:  “If I had $1,000,000, I would buy you…”

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And that’s it!  Have a good weekend.

2012 Wrap-Up for My Blog

I never intended to read or — heaven forfend — write a blog.  Ever.  In fact, about seven years ago, when people were still doing Live Journal and I found it to be — how shall I put this graciously? Not to my tastes in terms of etiquette or maturity — an acquaintance of mine Continue reading “2012 Wrap-Up for My Blog”

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 4)

Just a reminder:  tomorrow is the 13th of the month, and so it is a Rêveur Day.  Be sure to wear black and white with a pop of red, and then send me your picture if you feel so inspired.  (And thanks to all those of you who are doing it even when you don’t send pictures.  I enjoy hearing about it on Facebook, too.)  For more information on what I’m talking about, please click here.

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Here is the continuation of my six-part gothiness series.  You can read the previous three parts by clicking on these links:

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 1)

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 2)

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 3)

And while you’re at it, check out this review of Werewolf Songs over at As You Were.  This CD went on my Christmas list faster than you can say lycanthrope.

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Part IV:  Tim Burton, I’m Sorrowful to Report, Just Might Have Lost His Edge

I had always been a fan of Tim Burton’s work.  Even before I knew who he was, Beetlejuice was my favorite movie.  I had seen it fourteen times by the time I hit my senior year of high school, which in that pre-Internet time of Blockbuster Video and VCRs was a big deal.  His movies were macabre and funny, visually appealing and well acted.  I thought his stories were original.  And who doesn’t love, love, love Danny Elfman?  (I’m still listening to Oingo Boingo’s Dead Man’s Party.)

I loved his trademark black-and-white stripes, not because of any affection for black-and-white stripes, but because he had a trademark.  Burton could be known even without an introduction.  He had a strong sense of himself, and I gravitated toward that even before I consciously understood how much I admired and yearned for that quality.

But as much as I have always loved The Nightmare Before Christmas — to this day autumn finds me singing “Sally’s Lament” in the shower — I have to admit Corpse Bride left me feeling a little hollow.  It didn’t have the fully realized grandeur of his previous movies, even though all the right elements were there.  And with the notable exception of the incomparable and exquisite Big Fish, most of his movies lately have been…disappointing.  His new take on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was goofy, and his reimagining of Alice in Wonderland just about broke my heart.

But then he tackled Dark Shadows, and I allowed myself to hope.  The early trailers and studio stills looked promising, the cast of the usual beloved suspects (with Michelle Pfeiffer and Eva Green thrown in for a bonus), impeccable.  I started to feel excited, sure that his pitiful streak couldn’t go on for this long.  And how could you go wrong with Dark Shadows?

He found a way.

Crackpot storytelling, that’s how.  An inability to remember what denouement is — or the integrity of plot.  More style than substance.  And the worst use of werewolf ex machina I’ve ever seen.

I sat in the theater in a long black skirt and the most incredible Iron Fist shoes and wanted

These shoes are actually purple, not blue.
These shoes are actually purple, not blue.

to eat an entire box of Raisinets and chase them down with a whole bag of Twizzlers.

I don’t know why I should have felt betrayed.  I do know I felt stupid for having allowed myself to hope.

But now there’s Frankenweenie, a film which has been expanded from its original short version — a short version which was one of Burton’s first projects thirty years ago.  The reviews so far have suggested this one is worth a look, even considering the last several years of shlock. *

And once again, that eternal fountain of hope is bubbling up inside of me.  If I could just find someone willing to see it with me, I’d be set.

One last look before we go.
One last look before we go.

*  Check out this review of Frankenweenie by Tom Charity.

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Click on these links to be taken to the rest of the posts in this series.  Thanks for reading!

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 5)

Embracing My Inner Goth (part 6)