Dear Random Graphic Novel Guy,

You’re pretty awesome–let me just get that out there.  For you to approach someone you don’t know at all and have a lengthy conversation about graphic novels with?  You must have the confidence of someone who is so cool, they poop ice cubes.  Thanks  for the great conversation and thanks for the recommendations.  I wrote them all down as you rattled them off and have already requested many of them.  I hope you get everything you’ve ever hoped for and that you have a graphic novel written about you.

Love,

The chick in the green jacket frantically scribbling the names of the comics you kept raving about

Blankets

Blankets

Craig Thompson

Purchase on Amazon.com

Friends who have read lots of graphic novels always recommend this one to me.  I finally managed to get my hands on a copy–and quickly read it on a train to Maryland.  Yes, this review has been queued a while.

The copy I got through my library was HUGE (I think it was just a few pages shy of 600).  I thought it would take forever for me to get to the end, but the story is so interesting that I flew through it.  I finished it within two days.  I came into the story not knowing what it was about, except that on the cover there are two people hugging in the snow and that there were seven trillion pages.

Reading the author’s story of brotherhood, first love and naive views of God, religion and life was sometimes wonderful.  I found myself laughing, smiling and wishing I could go back to times when I had experienced the same thing.  At other times, the story was painful and made me remember my own pain.  I wanted to pull the main character from the panels and cradle him in my hands, and tell him that things would be okay.

The setting of the graphic novel isn’t like the one I grew up in, but we’ve all been in his shoes at some point or another–perhaps not to the same degree, but pain is pain, whether it is residue from a first love, or from a family that doesn’t quite see the world through the same glasses.

Also, the art is awesome.  And I adored the main character from the first page.  Anyone who is a fan of graphic novels should check this one out.

Week Forty-Nine

This week I managed to stay exactly the same weight as last week.  I always think that’s pretty incredible to do.  Before and after pictures will have to wait until next week.  I completely forgot to take a photo of me in the dress.  Whoops.

Besides my horrible memory, I’m still digging away at finals–one and a half done, two more to go!  After that, I have to plan spa day, fix my ipod, and relaaaxxx.  Have good week in my honor!

The Unwritten: Inside Man (Volume Two)

The Unwritten: Inside Man (Volume Two)

Mike Carey

This volume picks up immediately after the last one, but not with the same speed that pushed me to finish volume one.  The beginning dragged a bit as it introduced a new setting with new characters.  Once the mysterious events from the previous volume begin to be explained, everything started to get really good.

I think the strength of this series is the knowledge Carey has of literature, authors and the historical significance of the times when they were written.  Reading this series is literally like talking to someone who has studied literature with a passion and is now telling you only the most interesting parts.  I really enjoy it.  It makes you think about literature in a new way, as well as bringing into question what humans do to works of fiction when they use it for good or evil.  The words are physical manifestations of the author’s ideas and because our attention brings it to life, we are responsible for not distorting the image into something mangled and horrid.

By looks of the map Tom(my) Taylor is carrying around with him, it seems Carey plans for this series to go on for a while.  I can’t wait to see where it goes next and what works of literature we’ll visit.  If you love literature trivia and fantasy stories (and history) then I would recommend you scramble to your local library and pick this series up.

Chicken Tacos

MmmmMmm.  These were delicious!  Look, they even make for great photos!

You can tell by the looks of the plate that I already ate one before suddenly remembering I should take a photo.  These were massively easy to make.  You’ll need:

Chicken breast

Avocado

Tomato

Your choice of shredded cheese

Onion

Taco meat seasoning

Taco-sized torillas

Reduced fat sour cream

Optional: Salsa and tortilla chips

To make them, cut the chicken breast into strips and cover them in taco meat seasoning.  I just used my finger to spread it around.  I decided I wanted a kick, so I used the hottest variety they had.  I set the chicken strips to cook on a pan (I didn’t use oil) and chopped up onion, tomato, avocado and put each in a bowl.  Margo should be cringing at this point because she knows how much I love using as many bowls as humanly possible.  Also going in a bowl: the sour cream, the shredded cheese, tortilla chips and the salsa.  When the chicken in cooked through, add it to the collection of bowls and make your taco as you see fit.  Tada!

And just to make my dearest Margo happy, here’s a snapshot of all the bowls I used:

Also note how my mom is trying really hard to get out of the shot.  Sorry mom!  The orange stuff on my plate is mashed sweet potato.  I should be writing about that one next time!

Thor (2011)

I know, I can hardly believe it either.  Since when do I see a movie that isn’t Harry Potter opening weekend?  Crazy.  In any case, I am proud to tell you that I sat through the whole movie, even though the characters looked about as doofy as characters in a movie could look.  The movie even giggles at them at one point.

The main character bothered me for most of the movie–and I couldn’t quite place why.  Finally, towards the big climax, I realized what was driving me crazy: He reminded me of Heath Ledger, who was my favorite actor of all time.  I may have to start reading the comics now.  And follow this guy through his future movies.

Anyway, the movie itself was a bit (very) cheesy.  I liked it, and plan on visiting the paper stories, but the costumes were a bit lame and the dialogue super corny.  The plot was as predictable as the outcome of giving a two year old a giant glass of milk (stupid Loki).  That being said, I’d recommend it to people who like comic book movies.  Even if it’s one of those movies you only see once, fans of books-to-movies will enjoy this one.  Especially if they have a thing for hunky vikings.

Dear Man Walking Across The Street In Jack Skellington Slippers,

Do you realize your choice in footwear nearly caused your life to end?  I was so curious to see what exactly was on your feet that I nearly hit you!  I thought they were food cartons until I was right next to you.  Also, when we made eye contact, I panicked.  Hence the thumbs up.  I promise I am not super lame.  Stay awesome!

Love,

The chick in the black corolla who gave you a thumbs up

Week Forty-Eight

Today I lost 3.8 pounds!  I’m not sure how that happened, but I am certainly glad of it.  My total is now 60.2 pounds lost.  Next week I am going to try to come up with a before and after photo–maybe even with the same dress (since I still own it).  My one year anniversary is coming up soon, and that’s when I’ll begin my art project posts.  I’m quite excited!  I’ve gotten a few already and they’re all different yet have similar characteristics.

Finals are upon me, so postings will be delayed and at a minimum.  They’ve already been pretty limited, so be aware that they’ll stay this way until all my things are finished.  That’s all I have for you guys this week.  Enjoy your days!

Hellboy (2004)

After reading most of the Hellboy volumes, I was ready to watch the movie.  Many people warned me I was going to be disappointed because I am one of those people who like my movies to stay as close to the book as possible.  Even if it means the movie sucks.  Yes, I liked the first two Harry Potter movies a lot.  Sue me.

The movie pretty much leaves the volumes behind after about twenty minutes–and that was fine for the most part.  I didn’t like the movie more because I found it moved too slowly for an actiony-kind of film.  This was made worse because the graphic novels are packed with great mythology and fights and explosions.  The actor that plays Hellboy does a great job though.  And small details like his feet and tail were cool.  Also, Abe Sapien is completely awesome.  I wasn’t disappointed by him at all.  I was worried he’d be left out of the movies (you know, because he’s my favorite character) but he had a nice big part.  Yes, I know he’s in the movie poster.  Go figure.

While I was entertained by this too-long movie, I don’t think I’ll be seeing the sequel any time soon.  I like the books too much to waste time on a film that has almost nothing to do with the elements that make the story so compelling.  Why do they think a movie based on a popular graphic novel will do well when it doesn’t include any of the qualities of the much-loved series?  Silly movie people.  All in all, I recommend this one for anyone looking for something to fill the time.  If you’re questing for some seriously awesome graphic novel movie, move on to another.

Dear White Car Parked In Front Of Me,

When I parked in the spot in front of you, I thought to myself, “Man, I hope this car leaves early so I can just pull straight through the spots and leave without having to reverse.”  I really did think that.  I swear.  Anyway, when I came out of class 35 minutes later than I should have and saw you still parked in front of my car, I nearly bit your doors off.  You were seriously the only other car in the entire parking lot.  Did karma tell you not to leave before me?  Did it?  Ugh.  What are the chances?  Stupid car.

Love,

The chick thinking about leaving your owner a note