Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pride and Prejudice

Apparently the world has decided that it's been far too long since I've read or watched Pride and Prejudice, and has conspired to present me with ALL the Pride and Prejudice reminders in one day to make me aware of this fact.

It started this morning when I had myself a little fangirl moment. And for once, it wasn't in regards to Doctor Who or Buffy or Mulder and Scully #secretsexytimes. No, this fangirl moment was in regards to the latest episode of the Lizzie Bennet Diaries. Because from the second it started rolling, I knew what was coming - DARCY. If you're not watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, you should go and watch the whole lot right now. Because, AWESOMENESS. If you've been watching intermittently or haven't seen today's episode yet, I'll just tell you that this was episode #59, and this was the first glimpse of Darcy we've had. So yeah, it's been a LONG time coming.

Anyway, after my little fangirl moment, I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed when I came across this:
Shamelessly stolen from Ness. I'm sure she won't mind........
NESS WENT TO PEMBERLEY. (Okay, technically Ness went to Lyme Park. But whatever. It's PEMBERLEY.) And I am so freaking jealous.

And then I was scrolling though my Google Reader and came across this post from Emily about how when you think about it, the characters in Pride and Prejudice are just as weird and socially awkward as the rest of us. Only without the blogging and the mobile phones...

Anyway, all of this made me realise that I haven't read Pride and Prejudice since before I left Canberra over a year ago. And it's been about the same length of time since I watched the 1995 BBC version (which is the ONLY version, as far as I'm concerned). Both of these facts are completely and utterly horrifying to me. I've read it at least once a year since 1998, with multiple readings in 1999 when we studied it in Year 11 English. Because I'm a giant nerd who keeps stuff way longer than I need to, I can show you this:

Our English teacher handed us a sheet listing all the characters, and told us to draw links between them. That up there? Is what Must be Thrifty and I came up with. We came up with a colour-coded system and everything. Yellow is marriages, orange is Darcy family relationships, blue is Bennet family relationships, pink is friendships etc etc etc. Yeah. We're cool like that.

Anyway, the moral of the story? If you need me, I'll be here:
Yes, that's my very mangled, 13 year old copy of P&P

Or possibly here:

K xx

Monday, October 29, 2012

Movie Monday: Hocus Pocus

That's right, kids. It's time for my one and only concession to Halloween!!
I love the crap out of this movie, no matter how many years I go without seeing it. I think I might actually have to go and buy it on DVD so that I can watch it regularly, that's how awesome it is.

Reasons why Hocus Pocus is awesome:
1. Bette Midler as Winifred Sanderson. She. Is. Brilliant.
2. There's a talking cat. And a MUCH better talking cat than Salem in Sabrina. Just FYI.
3. The book. It's still creepifying.
4. Sarah Jessica Parker. This is literally the only thing I've ever seen her in where I don't want to punch her in the face. (And yes, I just checked her IMDB page to clarify that statement. I stand by it.)
5. The scene where the sisters sing "I Put a Spell on You" at the Halloween party.

6. Tricking the witches into the kiln with a French tape.
7. Kathy Najimy. Unlike SJP, Kathy Najimy pretty much steals the show whatever she's in. This is no exception.
8. The mother's Halloween costume - 1980s Madonna.
9. Okay, you guys? This completely blew my mind when I found out. Thackery Binx? IS TIMOTHY MCGEE FROM NCIS. (aka Sean Murray)
10. The scene where Dani hides in the cupboard and spies on Max hugging his pillow and calling it Alison. Seriously awkward in real life, hilarious on film.
11. Billy Butcherson. Who doesn't love a snarky zombie?!
12. The sleazy bus driver.
13. The local bullies, Jay and 'Ice'. Ice, incidentally, is played by Larry Bagby, better known as Larry, the Sunnydale High bully from Buffy.
14. The scene where the Sanderson sisters think they've met Satan.
15. Flying on a vacuum cleaner.
16. Dani. Sure, she's a pain in the arse little sister. But she's also hilariously sassy a lot of the time.
17. The scene where Billy cuts open the stitches across his mouth and starts yelling at Winifred.
18. Stripy socks.
19. It makes Salem look approximately a thousand times cooler than it really is.
20. Look, it's just freaking awesome, okay????

Plus, the following quotes:
- "I. Am. Beautiful. Boys will love me!"
- "You should have punched him." "He would have killed me!" "At least you would have died like a man."
- "Max likes your yabos."
- "Oh, come on. It's just a bunch of hocus pocus."
- "I summon the burning rain of death!"
- "Dost thou comprehend???"
- "I've always wanted a child. And now I think I'll have one. ON TOAST!!"
- "I AM CALM!"
- "Go to Hell!" "Oh, I've been there, thank you. I found it quite lovely."
- "Well, what does it say?" "Well, it says to form a circle of salt to protect from zombies, witches, and old boyfriends."
- "Max, I'm not going up there. My friends at school told me all about that place. It's weird!" "Dani, this is the girl of my dreams!" "So take her to the movies like a normal person!!"
- "WHY? Why was I cursed with such IDIOT sisters??" "Just lucky, I guess."
- ""Oh, look. Another glorious morning. Makes me sick."
- "Thackery Binx, what took thee so long?" "I'm sorry, Emily. I had to wait three hundred years for a virgin to light a candle."
- "Don't get your knickers in a twist! We're just three kindly old spinster ladies." "Spending a quiet evening at home." "Sucking the lives out of little children!"
- "Sisters, All Hallow's Eve has become a night of frolic, where children wear costumes and run amok!" "Amok! Amok, amok, amok, amok, amok... [Winifred punches Sarah in the stomach] Ugh!"
- "Well, tell me then, what do you call this contraption?" "I call it... a bus." "A bus. And its purpose?" "To convey such beautiful creatures such as yourselves to your most... forbidden desires." "We desire... children." "Hey, it may take me a couple of tries, but I don't think there will be a problem."
- "Wench! Trollop! You buck-toothed, mop-riding, firefly from hell! I've waited centuries to say that." "Say what you want, just don't breathe on me!"
- "It's the chocolate covered finger of a man named Clark!"
- "What is this place?" "It reeks of children!" "It is a prison for children."
- "Hello, I want my book. Bonjour, je veux mon livre."
- "I will always be with you."

What's your favourite movie to watch at Halloween?

K xx

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Ancient history, Volume XXXII

Previously, the trip from Cancun to Merida, with a stop off in Chichen Itza, which I can never type correctly the first time around.

We only had one day in Merida, which meant that we had to choose between two activities - a trip to the cenotes, or a trip to the ruined city of Uxmal. Obviously, me and my inner archaeology nerd were all for another ruined city. Unfortunately, EVERY OTHER MEMBER OF THE GROUP wanted to go to the cenotes. Now, I could have gone to Uxmal by myself. Except that a) half the fun of going to a ruined city is having someone to go "OH MY GOD, LOOK AT THAT AWESOME THING!!" to, and b) I was a little bit paranoid that I'd get lost in the depths of Mexico. So I abandoned my plans to hang out at an ancient city, and instead joined the group on a trip to the cenotes.

As it turned out, it was probably a good thing I didn't read the description of the cenote trip before we left, or I would never have left our hotel room...

First of all, we had to spend an hour on a minibus getting to some tiny town in the middle of nowhere. During that time, we became progressively sillier, especially after we noticed that the description of the cenote trip included pronunciation advice - "say-noe-tay". We entertained ourselves for FAR too long with that, saying it in a very similar way to this:

Eventually, we got to the town, and I discovered that getting to the cenotes required a half hour trip in a horse-drawn carriage. And to be honest? Carriage makes it sound FAR more luxurious than it really was. It was more like a cart that had been loosely hammered together, and covered with some kind of plastic that advertised a soft drink company. Also, the horses had a tendency to go a bit sideways and pull the carts off the tracks.
Photo stolen shamelessly from Sara. 
In case I've neglected to mention it before, I'm TERRIFIED of horses. And the trip to the cenotes took place through butterfly infested woods. I'm also terrified of butterflies. So yeah. It was NOT the most relaxing trip ever.

We finally arrived at the first cenote, which was almost as terrifying as the cart ride:
Also shamelessly stolen from Sara.
That's Suit Pants on the ladder. You couldn't see the bottom of the ladder because it was so freaking dark. AND the ladder was slippery with mossy stuff and water. So yeah. It was tons of fun. But once we got down to the bottom? It was TOTALLY WORTH IT:

The water was pretty cold, and 10-15 metres deep in parts. But it was also so clear that even in the deepest parts, you could make out individual rocks on the bottom. After half an hour or so there, it was time for another 15 minute ride through butterfly infested woods to the second cenote.
Yup, I stole this from Sara too.

That was even MORE fun - there was a platform about five metres above the water, and the water was deep enough that you could jump off it without any worries. Well, except for the part where I managed to fill my sinuses with half a cenote worth of water. That was not even remotely enjoyable, and my daredevil-ish antics ended shortly thereafter.

But the boys eventually decided that jumping off the five metre platform wasn't enough. Suit Pants started the trend, jumping the 10 metres from the top of the stairs. And when that proved non-lethal, he JUMPED THROUGH THE HOLE IN THE ROOF through which that photo up there was taken. *MY* excitement at the second cenote, however, was limited to a small case of "Oh God, I don't have enough upper body strength to get myself out of this cenote again...". Thankfully, after several awkwardly spectacular failures, I managed it or I might remain trapped in the cenote to this day!!

The third cenote had a nice shallow area at one end, so while the boys did their best to scare away the random people hanging out at the cenote by doing somersaults into the water, Sara and I sat in the shallows and watched the catfish swimming around.
Taken with Sara's underwater camera.

After half an hour or so at the third cenotes, it was back to the horse-drawn carts of doom, and then the bus to Merida. Which, let me tell you, was BUCKETS of fun considering there'd been no time to change out of our wet bathers...

Suit Pants left us for Cancun and his own tour when we got back, and the rest of us somehow ended up spending the evening at a tacky tourist bar where this happened:

Yeah... Because nothing says Mexico quite like gringos with guns in ridiculous sombreros...

Up next, Palenque, where there are more ruins and stuff gets...........weird.

K xx

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I. Am. Done.

You guys. YOU GUYS. I. AM. DONE!! With what? Well, I just handed in my last assignment (more like two - we had to build a database and then create a manual for it) for the semester. *flail*

Excuse me while I take this opportunity to celebrate by making use of ridiculous gifs that I have saved to my hard drive but have until now had no use for:

Aaaaaaaand in the course of using those gifs, I've just introduced you to pretty much all my favourite things on the planet. There you have it - my personality in a nutshell!

In other news, this arrived in the post today:

That's right, kids. IT'S THE VERY LAST DISC OF THE X-FILES. I have finally - FIIIIIIIIIIINALLY - made it to the end!! I'm kind of relieved too. I was starting to think it would never be over...

I think I'm going to take a break from the late 90s/early 2000s TV for a while (I've also been rewatching Dark Angel in the past month or so, not to mention watching Buffy for Snark Squad), but don't fret. I've already added Sliders to my Quickflix queue, so Operation Rewatch ALL the 90s Shows is still a go. I just need a little break to watch something that doesn't contain pagers and mobile phones the size of a brick!

So. What's news with you guys??

K xx

Monday, October 22, 2012

Movie Monday: Strictly Ballroom

In typical fashion, I still had no idea what movie to watch at lunchtime yesterday. But then 'Love is in the Air' came on the radio, and there was no competition.

I have a perhaps slightly unnatural soft spot for this movie, because it was the first thing I ever went to see at the movies WITHOUT AN ACCOMPANYING PARENT. I was 9, and someone's mother dropped us at the cinema about ten minutes before it started, and picked us up as soon as it finished. This, I should add, was in 1992 when it was acceptable to do such things despite the lack of mobile phones. We sat in the back row and thought we were SOOOOOOOOO cool, and were the youngest people in the theatre by approximately sixty years.


Reasons why Strictly Ballroom is awesome:
1. It was Baz Luhrmann's directorial debut.
2. Paul Mercurio as Scott. This was his acting debut (he was a professional dancer), and he's pretty phenomenal.
3. The costumes. Oh my GOD, the costumes.
Seriously, you guys. Source.
4. Tara Morice. She's fantastic as Fran.
5. The dancing.
6. Bill Hunter. Almost every big name Australian film from the 90s seemed to star Bill Hunter. There's a valid reason for it - he's fantastic.
7. Scott's little sister, Kylie. She's HILARIOUS.
8. Scott's big entrance at the Pan Pacifics.
9. Gia Carides as Scott's dance partner, Liz. You may know her better as Robin Swallows from Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.
10. The documentary style at the beginning.
11. Barry Otto as Scott's father, Doug. He's BRILLIANT.
12. The hairstyles. OH MY GOD.
Seriously, what even is this?? Source.
13. The soundtrack. I actually have this on CD, and it's awesome.
14. The scene where Ken Railings walks into the dance studio to see Liz.
15. Training in secret on the roof.
16. The scene where Fran's dad teaches Scott to do the paso doble properly.
18. Doug's backstory.
19. Fran's grandmother. She's sassy as hell, even when almost all her lines are in Spanish.
20. Sonja Kruger and Todd McKenny. They're now both involved with the Australian version of Dancing With the Stars.
21. Dancing the rumba behind the curtain at the State Championship.
22. The cinematography is BEAUTIFUL.
23. The whole thing was made for $3,000,000, and they had to fight for almost every cent of it.
24. When Doug starts applauding in the silent stadium.
25. All the times Liz accidentally knocks Fran over or squashes her behind doors.
26. Dancing the paso doble at the Pan Pacifics. You have to see it to believe it.

Plus, the following quotes:
- "A life lived in fear is a life half-lived."
- [hissed between teeth while dancing] "You've been drinking!" "Bullshit. Bullshit!" "You bloody have!"
- "A little musicality, please!"
- "I find it hard to get the films now. It's all video, video, video."
- "If you're driving the engine, what's that in the thermos??"
- "I have to help Wayne with his bogo pogo."
- "What do I want? I'll tell you what I want! I want Ken Railings to walk in here right now, and say 'Pam Shortt's broken both her legs, and I wanna dance with YOU!'" "Pam Shortt's broken both her legs, and I wanna dance with you." "That was unexpected."
- "We had the chance, but we were scared. We walked away. We lived our lives IN FEAR!"
- "Where do you think we'd be if everyone went around making up their own steps?" "Out of a job."
- "SHOW me your paso doble!"
- "Well, of course, you can dance any steps you like. That doesn't mean you'll.......WIN."
- "Son, can I bend your ear for a tick?" "Not now, Dad!"
- "Where the man goes, the lady must follow..."
- "He doesn't CARE about winning the Pan Pacific Grand Prix???"
- "He started doing his own wild, crowd-pleasing steps. A bit like you, Scott. Not always...strictly ballroom."
- "Poor Tina. It's like dancing in a brewery."
- "You've a light in you, boy. Let it shine!"

What's your favourite dance movie?
K xx

Friday, October 19, 2012

We all have potential for greatness

Twelve years ago today (because I'm old as dirt), I finished high school. Well, technically I finished my last CLASSES at high school and cleaned out my locker and cried a lot because OH MY GOD I HAVE TO BE A GROWN UP NOW (total lie. I'm still not a grown up). I still had to sit all my exams, and go back to school a bunch of times for band rehearsals for speech night and then attend graduation and all of that nonsense. But for all intents and purposes, my high school career finished 12 years ago today.

With the end of high school (which, for the Year 12s of 2012 has just happened), you hear a lot of motivational speeches and stuff about inspirational people. So I figured I'd take the opportunity to share with you guys some of the people that *I* find inspiring. They fall into two categories:

Fictional women who kick arse. Literally. 
- Buffy Summers. This will come as no surprise to those of you who read Snark Squad (And if you don't read Snark Squad, you should really start). Buffy's pretty awesome. She risks her life on a daily basis, she fights to save others even when she's terrified, and even death can't keep her down. Plus, she does it all in heels while being snarky.

- Donna Noble. In everyday life? She's a bit bumbling, a little chubby, lives with her mother, and works as a temp. But when she starts travelling with the Doctor? She grounds the Doctor, helps to save the planet numerous times, and she was the most important woman in the universe.

- Zoe Washburne. Zoe is one HELL of a badass. She's a soldier through and through, loyal to her husband, her ship and her captain. She fights for what she believes in, no matter how terrifying the circumstances. And she deadpans her way through it all.

- Dana Scully. When I watched The X-Files as a teenager, I always thought Scully was really boring in comparison to Mulder. But rewatching it over the past few months? Scully is brilliant. She rescues herself from danger on countless occasions, gets kidnapped by lunatics half a dozen times without developing a serious case of agoraphobia/PTSD, cuts up dead bodies at stupid o'clock in the morning, is WAY more snarky than I remember, and does it all while wearing really unflattering 90s pantsuits.

- Natasha Romanoff (aka The Black Widow). Holy crap, is she awesome. She holds her own against a multitude of superheroes with no special powers other than the ones she's worked her butt off to develop. She's afraid when she needs to be, but won't let her fear stop her. And she does whatever she has to to save the people who matter to her. Plus, she outmaneouvered Loki.

Actual people who are amazing.
- Tom Hiddleston. The title for this post is actually a Hiddles quote. In addition to being a fantastic actor, he worked his arse off to get into Cambridge, he's fluent in five languages (including Latin and Ancient Greek), he once brought soup to a reporter on the red carpet after seeing them tweet about how cold it was outside, and he's quite possibly the most eloquent and well-spoken person I've ever come across.

- John and Hank Green. If you're not aware of these two (John is an award winning novelist, and Hank is his younger brother, and a talented musician), they started vlogging in 2007 as an experiment - for twelve months, they would cease text based communication, and instead record daily vlogs to each other. Five years later, they're hugely popular, and have an incredibly dedicated community. But here's the thing - they engage with their community to "decrease world suck", raising money and awareness for causes all around the world. They're unapologetically nerdy, and their motto is "Don't forget to be awesome."

- Joss Whedon. This one's probably not a surprise, considering three of the characters in the above list have had some kind of involvement with him. Joss Whedon likes to break the rules. The network says his characters can't swear on TV? He has them swear in Chinese. He directs a Disney movie? It includes the phrase "mewling quim". The writer's strike shuts down the whole of Hollywood? He writes and films a musical with three big name stars for $10,000 and makes it available for free on the internet. He's not afraid to kill off the most popular character in a show. And one of my favourite quotes is from him - "Be yourself. Unless you suck."

- Maggie Smith. Did you know that she was undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer during the filming of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows? She was bald and sick as a dog, but she was determined to see it through to the end and finish playing Minerva McGonagall. If anyone in the world is in Gryffindor? It's Maggie Smith. Also? She's phenomenal as Lady Grantham in Downton Abbey.

- Jennifer Lawrence. She's a brilliant actress, but the real reason I love her? She's kind of a huge dork. She's the girl who waves to the crowd and then goes "Oh shit, I forgot to shave my armpits" (seriously. That happened). She's the girl who's all "Oh, how did I get in shape for this movie? I laid in bed eating French fries." And she's the girl who tells reporters on the red carpet about how much she needs to pee. She's not afraid to be herself, and that? Is awesome.

So. Who inspires you??

K xx

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Dead men don't tip, Agent Scully

Holy hell. It took me foreeeeeeeeeeever, but I've FINALLY finished watching The X-Files season 8. To be honest, I've been rapidly losing interest for a while now, but I'm determined to finish the final season because I hate not knowing what happens at the end of a book or movie or TV show (yes, I'm the girl who reads the last page of the book. At least that way if I get hit by a bus, my ghost won't have to wander around for all eternity wondering what happened at the end!).

Scully's face pretty much sums up my feelings about this season. Also, source.

So. On with the show!
  • Mulder is gone, and Scully's having nightmares about him. Aaaaaaand now the T-1000 from Terminator 2 has turned up. His name may be Agent John Doggett, but I'm just going call him T-1000, because I can't not. Scully just threw water in his face. AWESOME. Aww. Now Scully's hiding out at Mulder's and is lying on his bed hugging one of his dirty shirts. Honey, that's a little weird... Uh, apparently Mulder was dying from a weird brain disorder. And now he's kidnapped the psychic chess playing kid from season 5-6, and T-1000 has Mulder at gunpoint. TO BE CONTINUED.
  • WTF. Mulder just jumped off a cliff and went splat. Oh. It wasn't Mulder. It was the Alien Bounty Hunter. Who's now impersonating Scully. This is very confusing. Two Scullys on screen at the same time. Oh. T-1000 saved the day. And has now been assigned to the X-Files. And Scully's having a little teary. 
  • WTF. There is some kind of giant angry bat person thing eating people... DAVID DUCHOVNY IS NO LONGER IN THE CREDITS AND IT MAKES ME WANT TO CRY. Scully has very...wide...hair in this episode. And now T-1000 is fighting a giant bat person in a lake. Seriously, WTF. 
BAT PERSON. Also, source.
  • Um. A bus full of people just stopped in the middle of nowhere and the people on board started clubbing each other to death with rocks. WHAT IN THE ACTUAL FUCK. Ahaha. Scully is using a digital camera, and after you take a photo it brings up an hourglass symbol because it takes so long to save it to the card. Oh, gross. There's some kind of body swap deal that involves putting giant creepy worms into your spine. They've put it into Scully and she is piiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiissed. Oh, double gross. T-1000 came to the rescue and CUT HER BACK OPEN TO GET THE WORM OUT. *gags forever*
  • Okay, this episode started with "All the Pretty Horses" playing, and it made me sleepy because that was my bedtime song as a kid. ANYWAY. Some kid disappeared for ten years, but is exactly the same ago. And he's REALLY creepy. And now he's going after his younger brother with a huge knife, and NYARGH. Hmm, T-1000 had a missing kid of his own once upon a time, so he's all about feeling the pain. The guy who abducted the kid ten years ago just dug up his skeleton in his back garden. SO WHERE DID THIS KID COME FROM?!?!?! O.o Oh dear, now the younger brother has vanished. But they found him thanks to the creepy kid, who seems to have been some kind of corporeal ghost??
Creepy small child. Also, source.
  • Hmm. There's some kind of wibbly wobbly, timey wimey shit going on here. Time is passing as it should, except the days are happening in reverse order. Apparently this dude - who's a friend of T-1000's - killed his wife and is in jail for it, but has no memory of doing it. Ugh. T-1000 to the rescue AGAIN?? Is this going to be a theme? Because zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. 
  • Uh, ew. An entire room of dead cult members, and some dude with an axe who has an eye in the middle of his forehead. WTF. So apparently you use drugs to open your third eye (literally), and that makes people around you hallucinate stuff and then they die that way. WHUT. Ahahaha, and now T-1000 has an eye in the middle of his forehead. He's dreaming that he has blood on his hands and that he's chopping off Scully's head. And he just woke up to find her in his bedroom. AND THAT WAS THE END OF THE EPISODE. I have literally no idea what just happened. 
So this happened. Source.
  • So there's a dude who can see through walls. And he's using his ability to a) spy on his brother's secretary, and b) kill drug dealers and steal their money. It was even less exciting than it sounds. 
  • Some dude just crashed his car into his dead brother, and the car split around him. Aaaaand Scully just found the dude's head in a garbage bin and it appears to have been used as a bowling ball. LOVELY. Ahahahahahaha, dead brother is a cyborg. OMFG. SCULLY AND T-1000 ARE HAVING A CONVERSATION ABOUT HOW MEN MADE OF METAL ONLY HAPPEN IN THE MOVIES. Brilliant. 
  • A fat man at an airport in India is being stalked by a beggar with no legs who's creepy as fuck. The fat man just gave him 50 pesos. IN INDIA... Wait. The beggar with no legs wore the fat man like a suit to get into America????? THAT IS HORRIFIC. And the fat man has now bled to death from his butthole. LOVELY. Ahahahahaha, Mike from Twishite is in this episode. Awesome. Apparently the beggar dude is going around killing people who are dicks. It's like one of the Trickster episodes of Supernatural, except WAY more terrifying/gross.
  • Uh, Mulder is back and he's blowing people's brains out. Oh okay. T-1000 is investigating a case that Mulder investigated just before he disappeared. It's to do with an Indian folk legend wherein some creepy dude eats you alive, then pukes you back up, then you're cured of any diseases you might have. Mulder was trying to save himself from his brain condition thing, but saw the pain in the beastie's eyes and tried to kill it to save it from itself. Except apparently it's the Incredible Hulk and it can't die. T-1000 just got shot and the beastie ate him, and now he's having a "How the hell do I write up this case??" moment. DUH - "I got eaten. The end."
  • Mmmmm, electrocuted people on trains. LOVELY. Aaaaaaaaaaah, BOB KELSO!!! And Captain Gates from Castle. And Robert Stark from Life. Awesome. Eeeuw. Calcium based sea creature that grows through sweat and can electrocute you and burn off your skin. WHUT. 
  • Some poor woman just gave birth to an alien baby and then got murdered by her doctors. And now Scully is paranoid that SHE'S going to have an alien baby. Incidentally, despite the fact that six months have passed, Scully doesn't look pregnant AT ALL. Oh, now she's having Mulder flashbacks. Apparently HE FOUND HER OVA IN A SECRET GOVERNMENT LAB AND TOOK THEM TO A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL. If that doesn't scream #secretsexytimes, I have no idea what does. Now Scully's at the most blindingly white doctor's office ever, and has stumbled into a room of foetuses in jars. AND YET SHE DOESN'T GO AND FIND A NEW DOCTOR. Flashback #2: she asked Mulder for his sperm. He said that he "wouldn't want this to come between us" (God, just have sex already!!) and then said yes. Yaaaaaay, Mulder baby!!! Oh God. Scully's only 14 weeks pregnant??? This is the longest year of EVER. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah, ADAM BALDWIN!!! (aka Jayne from Firefly. I'm gonna call him Jayne because I have no idea what his character's name is) Flashback #3: Awww. Her Mulder baby didn't take. Now there's crying and hugging. "Never give up on a miracle". Yeah, Mulder. A #secretsexytimes miracle.
Honey. Find a new doctor. Also, source.
  • Scully's having nightmares about Mulder being experimented on, and is freaking out that he's dead. Now she's crying on Skinner's shoulder. Good GOD, people. Have some manager/employee boundaries!! Now there's some random FBI agent called Monica who thinks Mulder's joined a cult and just THINKS he's been abducted. Uh, whut. Oh. She gets "feelings" and believes in spiritual weirdness. Aaaaaand she has a past with T-1000. Awww. Scully carries round a really worn and folded picture of Mulder with her. Oh dear. Now they've found Mulder's dead body, and Scully is trying to chase a spaceship down on foot. She failed, and now she's screaming "THIS IS NOT HAPPENING!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!" at the sky. I'm sure it's meant to be serious, but it just comes across as hilarious. Aaaand to be continued. 
  • Awww. We open at Mulder's funeral. Scully is PROPER crying. Cut to three months later, and Scully is FINALLY looking pregnant. Wheeee, INSTA-BABY! Fisherman have just found Billy Miles' body in a fishing net. And now he's moving on the autopsy table, and there is serious grossness. As a result of Billy not being dead despite three months at sea, Skinner and T-1000 are digging up Mulder's body in the middle of the night. He's not dead! And it on a ventilator! And Scully's crying into his stomach. Uuuuuuuuuuuugh, Krycek is back. AGAIN. Oh dear. Mulder may be harbouring a virus that wants to turn him into an alien killing machine. But T-1000 saved him. Aaaaand now Mulder's awake, and Scully's crying and Mulder pretended to have amnesia because deep down, he's kind of a dick. 
STOMACH CRYING. Also, source.
  • Mulder appears - unsurprisingly - to have PTSD. But on the plus side, he's not dying of a brain thing any more. Scully, meanwhile, is a blimp and a half. Except that apparently she's not due for a couple of MONTHS. Ahahahaha - "Whoa. What's this? The hard drive is taking up a whole 10GB of memory!!". OH NO, NOT 10GB!! OMFG. The Lone Gunmen are Team #secretsexytimes - Langley just said to Mulder that they suspect his involvement in "a certain event *stares at Scully's pregnant belly*". Oh. And Jayne is an alien scumbag. Of course. 
  • Some dude just got fired, then saw a car crash, then a dude who was on fire climbed out of the crashed car and walked into his body. And now he's killed his boss. BEST. DAY. EVAH. Ugh, and Monica is back. Awww. Mulder just gave Scully a baby present and THERE IS A LOT OF FLIRTING GOING ON RIGHT NOW. I have no idea what the fire dude thing turned out to be, because I was distracted by Mulder being all belly-touchy and Scully grinning like an idiot. In other news, the present he gave her was a really creepy looking doll.
  • UGH. The black oil again. 
  • Eeeeeeuw, a giant worm beastie. T-1000 has a new partner because Scully's on maternity leave. She's blonde and peppy and I don't like her...WAIT. She's the accountant who processed all of Mulder and Scully's travel expenses. SHE'S A FANGIRL. Awesome. Sadly, her experience with the slime monster thing was enough that she wanted to go back to accounting. 
Peppy blonde fangirl. Also, source.
  • There is current sperm on the screen with a Mulder voiceover. Uh, EW. Apparently Scully is carrying a speeeeeeeeeecial baby. A human child with no human frailties. I have no effing clue what that means.  Okay, it's official. They've used the word "barren" FAR too many times in this episode. 
  • A METAL VERTEBRA FROM A DEAD BODY IS TURNING ITSELF INTO A SPINE. WHUT. Apparently Scully's chip was used to make her pregnant with an organic super soldier baby thing? Krycek just turned up and tried to kill Mulder. But Skinner killed Krycek instead. WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEE, ABOUT FREAKING TIME TOO!!!!!!! Awww. Scully had the baby (with a TON of alien super soldier people standing around her...). Apparently a light led Mulder to the baby, and then the Lone Gunmen turned up with gifts. Oh JEEZ... AAAAAAAAAH!!!! She and Mulder are face-nomming. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS. 

Tune in next time for me doing a happy dance because season 9 means IT'S FINALLY OVER. 

K xx

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Challenge recipe 22: Churros

I made these for Mexipalooza the other week, and they were pretty damned good, especially considering I have a) no experience making churros, and b) very little experience deep frying things. I have no photos of them in progress because I was too busy trying to carry on a conversation with Must Be Thrifty, Cheap Geek and L who were in the dining room while I was in the kitchen. And as I said last week, I was too distracted to pull out my SLR to take photos of the finished product, so there's nothing but a terrible photo from my phone, which apparently had a very smudgy lens. AWESOME.

Anyway, here's the book:

Here's what you'll need:
3 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2.5 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 egg yolks
Oil, for frying
Icing sugar, to dust

And here's what you do:
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and set aside. Put the water in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Then add the salt and brown sugar, and stir until dissolved. Remove from the heat, and tip the flour into the saucepan. Beat continuously until smooth.

Beat in the egg yolks one at a time until the mixture is smooth and glossy (or, if you're me, forget to do this step for a good 10 minutes and end up with a dough that's rather stickier than it should be...). Set the batter aside to cool. Once it's cool, get a piping bag and fit it with a large star nozzle. If you're me, this is the point where you realise that the only star nozzle you have is approximately 5mm across, and is intended for piping decorative icing. Decide that you don't want to make the skinniest churros of all time, so break the dough into blobs, and roll them into sausage shapes like you're a 6 year old with playdough.

Pour oil into a saucepan until it's about 5cm deep. Heat the oil to 190 degrees C if you're going by the book or "Who the fuck knows?" if you're using my method. If you're using the piping bag, pipe lengths of dough into hot oil, using a knife to cut them off cleanly. If you're using my method, just plop your playdough sausages into the oil and try not to burn yourself.

Fry the churros for 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper, then put them in a warm oven while you cook the remaining batches. When they're all cooked, arrange them on a plate and dust with icing sugar. Or, if you're using my method, discover that you can't find your small sifter and so just dump a spoonful of icing sugar over the top, hoping for the best.

Serve with an entire block of melted chocolate if you're using my method, or lime wedges if you're doing things by the book.

With any luck, yours will look somewhat more presentable than mine:

K xx

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

More than you ever wanted to know

So about a month ago, Fire Fairy gave me a Liebster Award over on her blog. Aaaaand because I'm a giant slacker (and also had everything planned out to ensure that my 500th post didn't fall on a Monday), I'm only just getting around to saying thank you. So thank you, Fire Fairy!!

11 facts about me:
1. The most comfortable pair of pants I own is a pair of jazz ballet pants that I bought for a dancing concert in 1997. They have holes in them and I don't care. (To clarify: they're exclusively used for sitting around the house when I don't have to go anywhere)
2. When I get angry, I cry. It's a pain in the arse.
3. The last time I bought an item of clothing was in April.
4. If I can find a way to get out of having to leave the house, I will.
5. I rarely wear skirts/dresses. After 12 years of school uniforms which required me to wear a kilt/pinafore/skirt to school every day? NO THANK YOU.
6. My current pet peeve is groups of people who walk insanely slowly while taking up the entire footpath. Especially in the city.
7. I find it weirdly fascinating to watch how other people sign their names. The conclusion I have reached from this? Everyone else has FAR more grown up signatures than I do.
8. I didn't drink until my 24th birthday (Well. Apart from that time I got drunk when I was six).
9. According to a form we had to fill in for class earlier this semester, I've saved $2,500 this year by using my local library instead of buying books.
10. I hate dusting to the point where I'll use the vacuum cleaner to try and suck up the dust from shelves/window sills/whatever so that I don't have to dust.
11. I leave my shoes EVERYWHERE. I currently have one pair in the study, one pair in the family room, one pair on my bedroom floor, and three pairs in the kitchen. This drives my mother up the wall. I, on the other hand, have realised that I'm FAR more likely to be able to find my shoes when they're NOT in my wardrobe.

Fire Fairy's questions:
1. If you could befriend any Disney villain and help them mend their ways, who would you choose and why?
Oh jeez. It's been a really long time since I saw a Disney movie in the traditional sense... On the basis that Disney owns Marvel Studios, I'm going to go with Loki from Thor/The Avengers.

2. You've been invited to a fairy tale themed fancy dress party. Who or what do you dress as? (I need inspiration for attending such a party myself!)
Maybe Belle from Beauty and the Beast?? Then I'd have a legitimate reason to carry a book everywhere!

3. If you could choose any activity to be made an official Olympics sport, what would you pick?
Roller derby. Because it makes a million times more sense than synchronised swimming.

4. Where in the world would you most like to go that you haven't already been to?
I can never decide between my top three - Ireland, Italy and Egypt.

5. What is your ultimate karaoke song? If you don't ever do karaoke, what would it be if you were forced to sing?
I don't do karaoke (although it's on my 101 in 1001 list. I'm a huge chicken though. I don't sing in front of people...), but I'd probably do something super cheesy that everyone knows the words to, like Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" or Abba's "Super Trouper", which I have an irrational soft spot for.

6. If you could have any famous historical figure over for dinner, who would you invite?
Just one?? Probably Charles Dickens.

7. If you went to Hogwarts, which house do you think the Sorting Hat would place you in?
I'd like to think Ravenclaw, but I'm terrible at riddles, so I'd probably never be able to get into the common room if that were the case!!

8. What was the best science experiment you did, or saw your teacher do, at school?
There are three that stand out: 1. In high school chemistry, we made mayonnaise (We were studying emulsions). 2. At school in England, our teacher separated a tiny quantity of crude oil into its various products. Because, you know, that's EXACTLY the kind of thing ten year olds need to learn about... And 3. Our school in England had 54 acre grounds. So for a biology assignment (again, JUST the kind of thing ten year olds should be studying!), we got to spend a class roaming around the grounds, collecting snails and measuring their shells with calipers. The point was, I believe to produce a bell curve. But mostly, we got to play in the woods for an hour. WIN.
What, you weren't drawing diagrams of fractal distillation
of liquids at the age of ten?? 

9. What's your favourite way to spend a hot summer's day?
At the movies or laying on the sofa under the ceiling fan, watching The Day After Tomorrow. Because you can convince yourself that you're cool while watching a movie about an ice age.

10. What's your favourite way to spend a freezing cold winter's day?
Cold for Melbourne is like 10 degrees C, so it's not really FREEZING as such! But probably sitting under a blanket watching movies and drinking hot chocolate. As you can see, I'm not really big with the whole outside thing...

11. If you could dye your hair any colour you wanted just for fun, which colour would you choose?
Purple, I guess?

I'm going to nominate the following people:
Pretzel Thief

Your questions, some of which I'm going to steal from the questions I was asked in my 500th post because I'm brain dead right now:
1. What's your favourite fictional pairing and why?
2. If you went travelling with the Doctor, what's the first place you would go and why? (Gina/Pretzel Thief - knowing that you guys don't watch Doctor Who, I'll reword it just for you: If you found a time machine that could also take you anywhere in the universe, what's the first place you would go and why?)
3. What's your favourite Halloween related movie?
4. If you could be any kind of animal, what would you be?
5. Cake or cupcakes?
6. What's your favourite song at the moment?
7. What was your favourite subject in high school?
8. What's your favorite 90s TV show?
9. If you could be any superhero, who would you be?
10. What do you like on your pizza?
11. Do you have any weird phobias?

The rules:
1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award Presenter on your blog.
2. Link back to the blogger who awarded you.
3. Copy and Paste the award to your blog.
4. Nominate at least 5 blogs (up to 11) to receive the award.
5. Inform them of their nomination by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Include 11 random facts about yourself in your post.
7. Answer the 11 questions the person that has nominated asked you and create 11 new questions for the people you have nominated.

Feel free to answer the questions in the comments if I didn't tag you! (Hell, even if I *did* tag you, feel free to answer in the comments)

K xx
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