Down the Runway, Into the Bus

I can count the number of times I’ve been to the AGH on one hand. It’s embarrassing in a way. I’m a fourth year art major, and every time I go I tell myself, “I really should do this more often!” because I’m always met with something new and inspiring.

This time around, It was the very same story. I encountered exhibits that explored visual languages by means I’ve never encountered.

The exhibit we came to see was RUNWAY: Contemporary Fashion by Richard Robinson. I was immediately intrigued by this collection. The world of fashion is fascinating, on and off the runway. What struck me most was seeing these divine creations in a gallery, as opposed to an E! Red Carpet Special. It reclaimed the fashion world as a valid form of artistic expression, and validated the craft that is fashion design.

It was with a similar attitude that I approached my favorite work in the gallery, Kim Adams “Bruegal-Bosh Bus”. I simply cannot do justice to this ongoing installation piece. It is, in a word, magical. At first glance, it almost seemed as if Adams had taken my childhood and encapsulated for all eternity. The work, in simplest terms, is built around an orange 1970’s Volkswagen bus. The bus is covered in toys, planes, trains, automobiles and everything in between. It’s like the ultimate altar to 21st centaury pop-culture. It’s whimsical and capricious - and yet, at the same time, there is a very disturbing quality to the piece. The gallery wall notes rightly label it as “a futuristic diorama…a funhouse, but also prompting to the serial preoccupations looming large in the 21st Century – consumerism, materialism, homogenization of cultures…”

The very place in which the bus sat added to this dark quality subverting the work. Directly behind the bus is a large glass window, through which we see a breath-taking view of the city. The city, in all it’s grime and glory, it’s smoke stacks and its mountain tops, appears to be the very place that inspired Adams to create this “dialectical vehicle”.

 It’s a site and spectacle to behold. It gives new meaning to musty toys that were previously regarded as mere remnants from a life spent inside the play-pen.  And it may very well be the most accurate reflection of the post-modern world that we live in. It truly is a tower of Babel for the 21st century.


 

                    

What are you, STRUPID?

Hello again! My mom bought party mix, comprised entirely of various chips of chocolate, differing in size and flavor, and I think there are a few peanuts thrown for good measure. I don't say it often, but it is TASTY.

I say tasty all the time...I'm a huge liar.

Just a forewarning - this blog, come September, will exist for one purpose only. Complaining. Obviously, that's the general slant of most of my material already. But, the complaining will take on a more specific tone. Mostly, well, entirely because I'm kinda sorta the editor-in-chief of my schools newspaper! Yikes.

Ahaha, it's laughable, the prospect.
The thing of it is, is, it's not a prospect. It's the truth. The truth. The truth. The truth.


Yup, no matter how many times I say it, still scary. I haven't heard back from half the staff yet...should I be concerned?


Maybe this will all turn out warm and rosy, like...Devil Wears Prada. Except that doesn't work at all, because Meryl Streep was the heartless editor-in-chief, and I just wanna be the pretty intern who gets a fabulous new wardrobe and occasionally kisses Adrien Granier. Yes, this is a very problematic comparison indeed.

I suppose I'm intimidated because dating back, oh, five hundred years or so, my predecessors have all been akin to one another in that they were organized, punctual, and so much more involved than I. I'm an under-the-radar sort of person - you know, an album review here, a snide comment there and so the story goes. And now, I have the 12 unwritten editorials looming, and the sole responsibility of keeping The Crown from being unintentionally humourous.

Nobody reads these days anyways, right? Book-learnin' is a thing of the past! Ha...Ha.


Oh Lordy.

Breathe.

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So I promised well-composed thoughts, or if those proved absent a funny picture. You get neither. Instead you get to hear just how badly my fingers hurt after picking up a guitar for the first time in six months.
(See how I did that? Casually mentioned me playing the guitar in an oh-no-nonchalant manner in order to subconsciously up my cool level in your mind? Sensational!) Since there is only so much I can say in that regard, I'll tell you about my day.

Or rather, I'll exclaim over the fact that I just spent my whole day in DOWNTOWN GEORGETOWN, by choice! Sorta. Now whether you know a little or a lot about Georgetown, I doubt whether anyone has ever led you to believe it's a metropolis of cultural living. Most would argue it's quite the opposite. I would have counted myself among them, until only recently. Let me explain:

I'm doing some work for my university's graphic design department over the summer, and my boss tries to set us up off site when he gets the chance, for learning purposes etc. etc. Because our actual office was closed today due to power issues, he arranged for me to meet with an ad agency in Georgetown. It turns out the said agency was actually a 2 minute walk by my house, in Downtown Georgetown. Much to my surprise, it is very much a real agency people. With big mac attack computers, hard wood floors, fancy leather couches and high profile clients - all sitting just a few doors down from the McGibbon! (A dirty hotel that serves as a watering hole for all of Georgetown's seedy underbelly). Anyways, my time there was enjoyable and very informative. I chatted with the head of the company, then had some one-on-one time with the designers (which cemented my hunch that I will most definetly have to continue going to school for graphic design after my last year at Redeemer. Anyways, we'll talk about my future some other post). In addition to the impressive work space, this agency was full of highly trained, classy individuals, some of which even lived in Georgetown (others still managing a commute from Toronto). So, Georgetown: 1, cynical Julie: 0.

I had know I would be venturing into the downtown area for about a week now, So on Saturday, after picking through one too many split ends, I arranged for a hair appointment in a relatively new salon, just down the street from the agency. I was hesitant, but desperate. And now, I'm satisfied and...new haired? The salon was a trendy little find, and fitting for a student on a budget like myself. The old art-deco ceilings gave it a real sense of atmosphere and the walls even showcased local artistic talent. Impressed. Chalk another point up to D.T.

With my fancy new do in show, I continued my mini-tour of the Georgetown I used to only to visit in order to rent movies or buy freezies. I ooed and awwed over all the gorgeous high-end clothing merchandise at Moxi, and even tried on some vintage minidresses at the Salvation Army. You heard me, the Sally-Anne.
Now while I didn't have time to check out every store on the block, last weekend my sister Adele and I enjoyed a Starbucks-level Vanille Frappe at the Coffee shop on the corner, and I've heard nothing but rave reviews for the bistro and pub only feet away. And the crowning jewel on Downtown Georgetown's newly granted tiara: the children's bookstore is shutting down the street on Midnight, July 21st, for a street party celebrating the release of the new Harry Potter book. How could I not be wooed?

All in all, New York it isn't, but better than spending all night and day updating my facebook status? It sure is.

Wow, that was a positively glowing review. That ad agency should have hired me on the spot.
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Shhhhhh! My roommates think I'm studying for a French Midterm. Hooo ha. Instead I'm here. With nothing to say...maybe I should consider actually studying...

So who wants to play 'pick a life for jules?' I'm thinking about televising it, you know, a whole show. I'd have a wheel. And get the guy from Uh-oh! to host it. Wouldn't that be swell?
uhoh

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Blogging. Reasons I do it.

I'm troubled.
I'm restless
I'm bored
I'm inspired
I'm compelled
I'm angsty

...I'm procrastinating.

When is it not to soon to have a Christmas ringtone?

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Hi World!

I wish I could emit some sort of sonic signal, to out to all those folk still awake. You know, a little 'we're all looking at the same sky' thing. Hi guys, it's okay. We're all insomniacs at some point.

But really, this isn't insomnia. Even the word 'Insomnia' connotes some sort of stress or anxiety. I'm just too content here, at my desk, to make the move across by room to my bed. I'm not ready for sleep, not just yet. So I guess this is the opposite of insomnia...

Oh well, either way, I'm awake and so are you.

I went to NY two weekend ago. It was magical. If you haven't been, get there. Now. And stay, my family wouldn't let me.

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Hey Dudes and Dudettes,

Check it. I'm blogging now. I know, t'is tres exciting. Actually, I'm doing the lazy man's blogging -  just posting an article I wrote for the Crown. It's about T.V...I can practically smell my pulizter. I hopa you lika.

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TV For the College Kid - Not so dismal afterall

As we quickly approach the one-month mark at our collective universities, most of us young scholars have established a comfortable day-to-day routine. We know what days we can sleep in, what busses we have to catch, and what classes we might skip once and again. But somehow, someway, we always make sure to catch that one hour of sweet commercial-saturated T.V goodness. Is there anything wrong with being a devout T.V watcher? Absolutely not, because for the first time in recent memory there happens to be a handful of shows that are well worth tuning into. And to help you sort the gems from the duds, I offer you a brief T.V roundup.

 

“Scalpel, Watson!”

            With ER going into its 50th season or so, many of us thought it safe to assume that the medical drama was either dead, or should be. But over the last two years, the genre has been boldly brought back to life by such programs as Grey’s Anatomy and House. Grey’s is a slick soap opera set in a very pretty hospital where very pretty doctors and even prettier interns find themselves in some very ugly situations. While it’s an entertaining hour of soapy drama, House is the doctor worth checking in with.  

Hugh Laurie stars as the abhorring grouchy Dr. House, a middle aged diagnostician with a pain in is his leg and a chip off his shoulder. He’s callous, thoughtless, rude and positively brilliant. Dr. House leads his team of (again very pretty) doctors in a quest to solve only the most bizarre medical mysteries. House plays out like an old Sherlock Holmes novel, complete with a Watson-esque sidekick named Wilson. House also succeeds on more levels than Grey’s because it doesn’t shy away from the more complicated issues surrounding medicine, science and religion. For those who tire of the weekly bed-hopping that can slow down Grey’s Anatomy, House is the perfect remedy. Catch the wickedly witty and surprisingly sexy doctor on Global and Fox, Tuesdays at 8:00.

 

“Goodbye, Newman”

It’s a well known fact that college kids have an intense, sometimes very odd, sense of humour. We’re always looking the latest greatest thing on the comic radar. So to my fellow students still mourning over the demise of Seinfeld and Frasier, you can put the Kleenex box away much thanks to the one-two punch combination of My Name is Earl and The Office, airing back to back on Thursday nights. The Office especially has brought back the joy of the situation comedy. It abandons old sitcom conventions like the laugh track, and opts for a drier, realistic style.

Set in the cubicles of the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company, this show resonates with anyone who’s had to work under a boss whose IQ scarce rivals a block of cheese.  While Steven Carrel’s Michael Scott delivers most of the laughs, the supporting cast is nothing short of hilarious. And if that’s not enough win you over, at the show’s core is the tale of salesman Jim and receptionist Pam, who share a love story so sweet it leaves Ross and Rachel in the dust. This is a show you can’t afford to miss, see it every Thursday at 8:30 on NBC and Global.

 

 

“INSERT CLEVER HEADING”

Before Steve Carrel was bossing people around Dunder Mifflin, he was honing his comedic skills while working as a “correspondent” on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.  Airing simultaneously on CTV and the Comedy Network, this faux newscast is a funny, clever, informative and often scathing look at the daily news in politics, foreign affairs and everything in between.

Directly following The Daily Show is The Colbert Report with Stephen Colbert.  The Colbert Report is another faux newscast, only this time lead anchor Stephen Colbert takes on the persona of an ego-obsessed red-state republican news anchor. It’s a ridiculous concept, and Stephen is in a word, delightful. It’s the perfect night closer for the poli-sci enthusiast or anyone else seeking to laugh while they learn.

 

“Chuck Norris wears Jack Bauer pajamas”

If it’s high-octane action and conspiracy theories you’re after, keep your Mondays reserved until January, when super-agent Jack Bauer returns to primetime in his latest bout with international terrorists on 24. While 24 may at first appear to be nothing more than a T.V version of Die Hard, it’s quite the opposite. The performances are riveting and plot lines politically loaded. To top it off, Kiefer Sutherland’s portrayal of Jack Bauer gives us a glimpse into deeply complicated, broken man. It’s a somber and bracing take on the all-American action hero. With all five seasons now released on DVD, it’s easy to get caught up before season six kicks off in January.

           

            There you have it, a brief but informative look at the state of today’s “idiot box”. So go ahead and treat yourself with one of these worthwhile shows every in the midst of your hectic schedules. But before you do, I leave you with this final piece of advice: please, please, please steer clear of anything that involves a panel of three judges, the promise of a million dollars, celebrities dancing, or a billionaire with a bad toupee.

 

Other quick-picks:

  • Drama: LOST – Wednesdays @ 9:00
    • It’s Gilligan’s Island meets The Twilight Zone
  • Action: Prison Break – Mondays @ 8:00
    • It’s 24 meets The Shawshank Redemption
  • Comedy: Scrubs – Thursday starting January
    • It’s Family Guy  meets General Hospital

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 ...So? I know. It's kinda boring - basically something akin to what the TV guide publishes every september. If there's one thing you can applaud me for it's the fact that I wrote about the Office and managed to skip past the fact that I would happily bare Jim Halpert's babies. 

Fare thee well ;) 


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Sorry to have to do this

Okay, so my plan back-fired (this is Robine, by the way). Instead of Julie getting annoyed with my entry and posting her own, she was like, "oh yeah, do that anytime. it's actually kinda refreshing. I could add your name to the blog if you want." But that is not what I want. I had a blog (if you could call it that, it was really more of a blig) and then realized I suck at it. I just want to waste hours upon hours reading other peoples' blogs. And lurking, always lurking, never commenting. That is what I want. 
But here I am, bliggety-blogging. What can I write about? Well, I'll share about my day. Today is my day off. I had two objectives for today: 1) go shopping and find a cheap new jacket or some cheap comfy dress shoes, both for teacher's college/practicum and 2) take off the last bit of wallpaper in my kitchen, for which I have already moved the stove. So far I have attempted and failed number 1, and not gotten started on 2. Let's talk about 1). It was seriously depressing. Of course I knew going in that I was shopping for fall stuff, and so it was not likely to be on sale. But honestly, what business does Old Navy have charging $50 for a jacket with no lining that doesn't even have any buttons? Seriously! And shoes! Don't get me started on shoes for ladies size 10. The only ones that are ever on sale are the huge chunky ones. Hello! size 10 people will never buy those, not for 5 cents. Size 10 feet are big, why would I want shoes to make my feet look bigger, and myself look like a big tall ogre? Why? Can't you just make me some nice black dress shoes that are not plastic and don't dig into my heels and don't cost  $50 when they're only worth about $12? Why? And don't get me started on those centre court vendors who won't take no for an answer. I said no, I do not want a free demo, because you are going to use that free demo to make me feel sorry for you and buy your useless product. Do I look like I have time and money to waste? I hate malls right now. And that is very unlike me.
But, on the very small bright side, I found a cookie that changed my life. After my disgruntled "shopping" experience, I decided I needed something from Timothy's World Coffee. And it was going to be sweet and so very far from boring and all for me. So I looked at things and the lady behind the counter looked at me. I picked up a saran-wrapped shortbread cookie with something chocolate in the middle but I couldn't tell quite what so, naturally, I squished it. And the lady saw me squish it. So I then I felt I had to buy it. Well. That was the best decision I ever made. The chocolate thing? A whole triangle of toblerone chocolate. It made the whole excursion worthwhile.

commandeer!

Hello readers of Julie's blog!

This is not Julie. It is I, her sister, Robyn. I have commandeered this blog because, well, I have nothing better to do right now.  And I thought, "wouldn't it be funny if the password Julie gave me to set up my (now defunct) Livejournal account was the same one she uses for hers?" And lo and behold--it is! This entry probably won't be around for very long. Julie might be tres annoyed with me because I'm cramping her cynical hipster style with my bubble gum cheek, but she has the power to delete.

So what's going on with Julie's life? Well, she's still working at the garden centre, flashing that bobbly ponytail around like her shit don't stink. She went camping with her g-town friends this past week-end, and had one night of  wet camping misery with her sisters not as recently. The said night of misery is now, of course, quite amusing for us to reflect upon, especially the somber drive home and the insistence that we all eat bacon and eggs and watch the Last Unicorn when we got home, instead of sleeping the whole afternoon.

She has been scheduled to work the holiday Monday, which is sad for me because I wanted her to work for free and help me take down wallpaper and paint my kitchen on that day. And then have a paint fight in our underwear. *sigh*

Alright, Julie, I see now that blogging isn't as easy as it looks. But that's still no excuse for writing about things like Pilate. or pilates. I am curious how long it will take you to discover this li'l gem of an entry. Anyone ready to place bets? 

So long, folks. This will likely be the last time you hear from me, as Julie will promptly change her password next time. Sayonara. Al vitise. Good bye.


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