Thursday, August 30, 2007

The One Thing (Saturday Night in the City)

Beth over at the Gardening Knitter came up with some questions that she wanted her readers to answer. It's harder than it first appeared.

The One Thing

1. If you could recommend only one book for others to read, what would it be and why?

I always say that my favorite book is The Eight by Katharine Neville, and while I always recommend it, it doesn't seem deep enough for this question, mainly because the "why" response would be because "I really liked it." And that's kind of lame.

Stealing Jesus: How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity by Bruce Bawer. I chose this book because there are so many anti-Christians out there (and I don't mean simply being agnostic or atheist or even another religion) who think that the Religious Right is what Christianity is all about and I disagree completely. I wanted to mail this book to my BAB anonymously, but he would never read it because it's written by a gay man. And we all know how the Religious Right feels about "the gay."

2. What is your one favorite song? Why?

Atmosphere by Joy Division. It used to be Madam Butterfly by Malcolm McLaren, but as much as I love that song, I have decided that I couldn't listen to it over and over and over and over which I can definitely do with Atmosphere.

3. What is the one thing that is the biggest time saver in your life?

Oy, this is hard. I have no time savers, really. I don't have a dishwasher or a garbage disposal. I don't even have curbside garbage pick-up. I'm going to show myself to be a true Detroiter with this answer: my car. I like to walk to locations which is why I live where I live. I can walk to the fruit market, the pharmacy, Michael's (in case I'm desperate for yarn), the beer store, the bar, even the grocery store as long as I'm not buying the place out as it's a bit more than a mile, but if I'm in a hurry I will jump in the car.

4. What is one gadget you couldn't live without and why?

My alarm clock. Whereas I usually wake up before the alarm goes off, I won't get up until the alarm actually goes off. I'm generally quite able to go back to sleep.

5. If you could recommend one film for others to see, what would it be and why?

To Live - I remember this film as portraying China as it is, and not as it wishes to be portrayed. The director Zhang Yimou (also responsible for Red Sorghum, Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, The Story of Qiu Ju, The Shanghai Triad and The Road Home) was banned from making movies for a number of years after this one (although Shanghai Triad had been released in that timeframe because it was already done) because of its truism. He also did Hero with Jet Li and The House of Flying Daggers but I haven't seen those. The link above has a great review of it – much better than I could write.

6. What is the one cure or preventative measure you believe in and for what ailment?

Gargling with salt water for a sore throat. Until my doctor recommended it with the correct proportions I always hated doing it because I used too much salt. You're only supposed to use a ¼ t of salt per one cup of warm water.

7. What is the best advice you've ever received and from whom?

"When you get older, you'll vote Republican." From the Former Father when he was disgusted that I was such a liberal. That is enough to keep me from ever voting Republican. ;-)

8. If you could introduce the entire world to just one band/musical artist, who would it be and why?

Joy Division, of course. They are my favorite band of all time and I have read every book I can find on them. I own every CD (I have never collected vinyl, otherwise I'm sure I'd be in serious trouble – money and space wise) that they have ever put out, including the boxset. I remember the first book I read about Joy Division and it used a word I didn't recognize to describe the music, so I looked it up. The word was dyspeptic, which means "gloomy." The funny thing is that I didn't find the music depressing or gloomy at all. One day after work when I worked at the University, I was hanging around the radio station because I didn't feel like going home as I had a headache and was just depressed (this was probably 1990 or 91 after I had broken up with the cheating ex-). I remember MVK playing a Joy Division song which made me smile. Just hearing a JD song played by someone other than me makes me happy. I know they're not everybody's cup of tea, but I think everybody should at least give them a try, if they've never heard them.

9. If you could convince others you meet or know of one thing, what would it be?

This one is easy!! I want to convince everybody that Champ Car is the best racing series in the world and that the IRL and TFG (Tony George) are evil. I can tell you the entire history of CART/Champ Car vs the IRL and TFG, but I won't bore the ever-living crap out of you here, because more than likely your eyes will glaze over and you'll not read the rest of my post. If anybody wants to know, I will gladly tell all, however.

10. What do you believe is one of the greatest ways of wasting money and how do you combat it?

I have to agree with Beth on this one. Commercial cleaning products. I have major issue with chemical smells, so I don't buy most of these products. I clean my bathroom with rubbing alcohol (kills germs), a toothbrush, and Zud (when I have rust stains – which is pretty often considering the color of the water in my apt. can be pretty orange). Beth has a lot more homemade recipes, so go and see her (it was a number of months back, but maybe she'll link for us).

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At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Blogger Jason said...

Total agreement on "Atmosphere". "To Live" is an amazing film. One of my faves. "Hero" and "House of Flying Daggers" are both very good, although more in a visual sense. The photography in "Hero" is simply stunning and the use of color is mind-blowing!

At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Blogger Beth said...

I am going to check out both of your book choices and I have to say, I completely agree with what you said about the religious right.
I've never heard the song "Atmosphere."
I've never seen the film "To Live" either, but I'll be looking for it.
I had to laugh at your father's advice. I started out in life as a Republican, I'm still a registered Republican, and there's no way I'll be voting Republican in the presidential election.
I think I'll do a post of all the cleaning products I made and what 5 ingredients does it all without being harmful to people, pets, or the planet. Some I made, some I found, and some I recreated from old timer recipes.

At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Anonymous The Zombieslayer said...

I know Badman likes Joy Division a lot. I'll have to borrow one of their albums. He says I've heard them before. We'll see.

I'll have to look into that Bawer book. I've always said the RR gives Christians a bad name. One of these days, I'll have to do that unpolitically correct post of how you want to live in a country with a Protestant majority because they tend to be the most tolerant nations on Earth.

At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Anonymous The Zombieslayer said...

Oh, and there's only one Republican out there that I'm aware of that's really a Republican - Ron Paul. The rest are frauds, especially our President.

At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Blogger fermicat said...

I hate my alarm clock.

People have told me that I will vote Republican when I get older but I don't believe them. I voted R when I was much younger. Now I am older and I reserve judgment until I see who the candidates are. The only republican seeking the nomination that I would possible vote for will almost certainly not be the nominee - John McCain. I disagree with him on a lot of issues, but the man has earned my respect.

No dishwasher?!? 8-0
I;d be lost without such luxuries.

The religious right is enough to put me off religion for a lifetime, so maybe I should check out your book recommendation. I haven't been to church in twenty years, and hypocrites like those people are a big part of the reason why.

I haven't heard of your book, movie or music suggestions, so I have more research to do!

At Saturday, 01 September, 2007, Blogger dr sardonicus said...

Joy Division were very much underappreciated and unknown in their day. Even now, you seldom hear their music unless you know somebody who has their records.

Your #7 is a good one, too.

At Sunday, 02 September, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

Jason - I knew you'd agree with me on those #s.

Beth - Very few people have heard Atmosphere unless you're heavily into postpunk. It's really a most amazing song. My first election I voted Republican because I listened to my father (I was only 18). By the next election I had learned to think for myself - something the rest of his children didn't learn. You did that post once before, but I didn't feel like searching. ;-)

Zombie - I think Badman is right and we were separated at birth. I'm surprised you don't know them. The Bawer book was very good. And it wasn't a hard read at all. Yeah, they're all neocons today.

Fermi - I didn't say I liked my alarm clock. ;-) I think you'll like The Eight. To Live can be hard to watch, if I remember correctly, because it was a little brutal. But I love Chinese films - the photography is always so beautiful.

Dr. - I knew I liked you. ;-)

At Monday, 03 September, 2007, Blogger Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Wow. Interesting recommendations and advice. I shall act on them!

Don't step in the bvicouk...

At Tuesday, 04 September, 2007, Blogger Scott said...

Haven't heard of many of those recommendations. I might have to make at least one move.

At Tuesday, 04 September, 2007, Blogger Sal said...

Love that the car is a time saver! You know how I feel about cars, cabs excluded. "To Live" is a movie that pops into my mind occasionally, they really were the luckiest unlucky people. I hate saying this but I love my "Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook" I swear she can clean a whole house with vinegar, baking powder, and bleach, or a combination thereof; Martha doesn't like chemicals either and "it's a good thing."

At Wednesday, 05 September, 2007, Anonymous The Zombieslayer said...

Yeah, they're all neocons today.

This really is a shame. I liked a lot of what the old Republicans had to offer. Although not perfect by any means, definitely better (and more intelligent) than neo-Cons.

Ever heard of Barry Goldwater? That guy was brilliant. And he had a huge beef before he died with the Religious Right taking over the Republican party.

At Wednesday, 05 September, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

FWG - I hope you're not disappointed.

Scott - Nice to see you, knowing how busy you are these days.

Sal - I don't blame you. I would have hated driving in SF. The traffic was hideous!

Zombie - Yup, the Former Father was a huge Barry Goldwater fan, even worked on his campaign.

At Sunday, 09 September, 2007, Anonymous badman said...

I have the vinyl 12" of "Madam Butterfly" by Malcolm McLaren perched a few feet from my right foot. And as you already know, I am as much the JD nut as you, and have a fair amount on vinyl, including a picture disc of "Les Bains Douches" upon which is scribbed both my favorite JD track "New Dawn Fades" from Amersterdam January 11, 1980 and your favorite "Atmosphere" from Eindhoven January 18, 1980. You of course have these on CD, both separately and in your box set (which they ruined by including micro-gaps between live trax - ouch!)

At Sunday, 18 October, 2009, Blogger eda said...





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