Diary of an Ass Monkey (assmonkeydiary) wrote,
Diary of an Ass Monkey

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Wonderland, Cycling, the Sundays, and the Oscars

Saw Alice in Wonderland Saturday and thought it was all right. It definitely looked beautiful and I was glad that Burton resisted his natural urge to make Wonderland needlessly dark. It was well-acted for the most part, although Johnny Depp didn't do a thing for me, especially when his Mad Hatter inexplicably turned into Mel Gibson's Braveheart about two-thirds of the way through, a metamorphosis that seemed to me less mad and more "Well, I'm bored of playing the character the way I was before." Mia Wasikowska, who played Alice, on the other hand, was quite marvelous. Despite having surprisingly few lines for a lead character, she conveyed her character perfectly. I look forward to seeing her in more films. Helena Bonham Carter made a great Red Queen, turning in the best performance I've ever seen out of her in a Burton film. Anne Hathaway was pretty forgettable as the White Queen, but there really wasn't much for her to do with the role. I was thrilled that Crispin Glover had such a substantial role as the Knave of Hearts, because he's just always so damn fun to watch. Alan Rickman and Stephen Fry, of course, did superbly as the Blue Caterpillar and Cheshire Cat respectively.

After that, I picked up and K. from work and we zoomed over to Jersey for her niece's second birthday party. I always wonder why parents push their small children's faces right up to flaming candles and then are shocked when the kid is terrified by the experience.

On Sunday, K. wanted me out of her hair so that she could do some organizational stuff, so I set out on what would become a thirty mile bike ride. The weather was glorious for early March, warm and sunny. I rode up to the Schuylkill River trail and took that all the way up to the Wissahickon Creek. Then I rode through along Wissahickon Creek up to the Valley Green restaurant, which involved riding through a lot of mud, gravel, and steep hills, a real test for my city bike, which looked ruggedly handsome after being heavily splattered with mud. Before making my way home, I cruised into Manayunk for a burger and some beers.

On the way back, "My Finest Hour" by the Sundays came on my Ipod's shuffle and I had to listen to the whole Reading, Writing and Arithmetic album, which is not just a perfect album, but also has the mystical power to make me feel like I'm twenty years old again, a feat which came in hand for the final miles of the journey.

Amazingly no body aches have resulted from the ride, so it looks like a thirty mile bike ride, at an admittedly leisurely pace, is quite within my ability. I can't wait to do it again.

Back at home, I had just enough time to re-watch The American Astronaut in all it's wacky, rockabilly glory before K. and I headed out to a fabulous Oscars party thrown by our friends Jen & Kim. I was supremely happy that my favorite movie from last year, The Hurt Locker, won so many awards, including the much-deserved Best Director award for Kathryn Bigelow. Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin were great hosts and Neil Patrick Harris did a fantastic musical number. The kinda silly interpretive dance sequences for the Best Score nominees might have been fine in a two hour awards show, not one that's already keeping hard-working people (and me) up past their bedtime.

Tags: best of 2010, bicycle, film, fitter happier more productive

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