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Monthly Archives: January 2012

Wow it was cold today. I still went out and did my walk though! All round the town. I had to as I almost exceeded my calorie allowance and I need to make sure my legs still work. I could quite easily stay in bed all day, which is scary really.

Read some more Bulgakov and I now have more ideas for the writing project. I think Shadow, the black cat in my story, will take on a role that puts her in both the real and spiritual world, quite like the cat in Master and Margarita but less evil. More like the cat in Coraline, I guess but still maintaining that she will be a symbol of death. It’s a challenge but I’m willing to accept it!

Bought some new socks today because I realised I didn’t bring enough with me. They’re cute and 3 pairs only cost £4 in New Look, so I’m really pleased with them! Also got a collection of stories by M.R James, who I believe writes ghost fiction. Again, I only spent £3 on it because it was on offer. The saving is going well! He was on my list of suggested reading, so I’ll get stuck in as soon as I finish Bulgakov.

Can’t believe it’s almost February. Where has the month gone?!

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Went up to collect my essays from last term today. Apparently Tiffany still hasn’t finished marking them but I picked up Jem’s. A low 2:1, which I guess I’m happy with but I wish it was a little higher. I’m still on track for a 2:1 overall though, which is all that matters really.

I did get a bit more of the writing project done today. Not a lot, I have to admit but I’m getting there in small chunks! Trying to read and absorb appropriate information for it while trying to write it is difficult, to be honest. Scary thing is, I’m still not 100% sure of the ending and I’m worried because it is still a bit jumbled in my mind. I was told that most of my original ideas were better suited to a novel because they were a little strung out, so I have to write something within 6000 words that is interesting and engaging without it being too abrupt. God I hate word counts. They really are the bane of my life.

Dan revealed that he was planning to get me the shirts he showed me on that website for Valentine’s Day. It’s too late now because I’ve ordered them but he should have told me not to! He said if he had that the surprise would have gone but I guess I didn’t pick up on the hint that he wanted to get them for me. I have no idea what to get him and he hasn’t been terribly helpful when I’ve asked him what he wants. His birthday is the 25th too, so I need to find two presents for him.

While up on campus today, I went for a little wander in the Arts Centre as I often do. The little gift shop is pretty interesting actually. It’s just a real mish-mash of stuff, most of which is really quirky and cute. I found this notebook in there which made me smile.

and inside…

It’s an actual book of faces! I guess I’m easily pleased.

Today the shoe was here. I wish someone would just claim it and put it back in their wardrobe.

I put up a few of the photos of the kittens, as well as some family ones from my 21st up on my wardrobe door today. Mum gave me framed pictures of me with the kittens and of me and Dan, which sit nicely in my bookcase. My room is very me and it’s a really lovely place to spend time in. I’ll be pretty sad when I have to leave it actually!

Watched Miss Congeniality today. It’s one of my favourite films and I got it with my LoveFilm trial. Still makes me laugh every time and it’s an awesome concept too.

Dan showed me this website today. http://outofprintclothing.com/ So of course, the Pride and Prejudice AND Wuthering Heights shirts are on their way to me right now. I was debating buying the Pride and Prejudice fleece but I have to be reasonably sensible with money now I’m growing up. My boyfriend is a terrible influence on me and knows exactly what I like far too well!

Diet is actually going pretty well. I’m restricted to 1200 calories a day but I’m finding it pretty simple to stick within them. I have one liquid meal and one solid meal a day i.e. I have soup with bread for either lunch or dinner and then something solid with meat or fish for the other. Soup is one of those rare foods, in which the healthy kind is actually really yummy. Weight Watchers tomato or chicken soup is actually SO creamy and filling.

Aber is still incredibly cold and sleeping next to a non double-glazed window isn’t good. I have to tuck up really tight and have the covers right over my head. I hope it gets warm early this year. Come on, sun!

First day back in Aber and as usual in January, it’s pretty miserable here. On walking downstairs this morning, I was greeted by this.

Don’t ask, I don’t know.

Just went into town and bought the essentials, as well as a nice lunch and coffee in Costa, accompanied by Bulgakov and his devil-infested Moscow. The place was packed with chattering students, which did make me feel a little lonely to be honest. I am quite a lonely person though. However, I sense this becoming a little self-pitying, so I’ll stop right there!

Watched the Japanese version of Ring with my LoveFilm trial. I had expectations of being really freaked but on watching it, I wasn’t that scared. Then I remembered that the last time I heard people talking about how scary it is, I was in primary school. It’s actually a really sad story and I’ll bet the American version takes a lot of that emotion out. Not that I should pre-judge or anything. If I’m wrong, someone educate me!

Caught up with Hayley and Annica over dinner. They’re both on health kicks again and I guess I am too. Hayley has finally discovered the world of mobile apps and they’re both counting their calories on My Fitness Pal. I jumped on the bandwagon too, I have to confess. I also jumped on the Where’s My Water bandwagon. Now really isn’t the time to be getting addicted to silly games but I’m afraid I am. No motivation to work means I find new things I like!

Spent my whole day on and off trains with a very heavy case. My arms are SO achey right now! It was emotional kissing my family and kittens goodbye this morning too but hopefully it won’t be too long until I’m back home.

I’ve read a lot of The Master and Margarita on my travels and find myself getting really into it. It’s really unpredictable, which is something I love in books. I hate knowing the ending after the first few chapters.

Dan’s band Playground have their first gig tonight in Chelmsford, which I’m gutted I couldn’t go to. He said there wouldn’t have been anyone I knew there to hang out with anyway, so I guess I’m glad I didn’t go but I am definitely going to see them play in April, where they’re taking part in Surface festival. SO excited! Everyone should check Playground out actually. Dan is the guitarist and he also sings a little! Their Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/#!/PLAYGR0UND.BAND

The journey went pretty smoothly, which makes a change. No horrible changing at unnecessary places in the West Midlands, which honestly is the most frustrating thing in the world*. No, I was pretty lucky today!

Got into a nice clean room, although a couple of my posters had fallen down. Need to go shopping tomorrow to stock up on supplies. The 24 hour Spar is obviously open but travelling makes me tired… really tired… So I’m already changed into my PJ’s, snuggled under my duvet with a cup of tea (made with someone else’s milk, who I apologise to) and just signed up for a free LoveFilm trial. Currently watching Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs. Yes, I am a child still.

*I have nothing against the West Midlands or people from there. In fact, I’ve only ever seen it from train windows. If anyone would like to show me its hidden wonders, I would accept the kind offer.

I still don’t have my loan. Which is more than annoying because I’m going back tomorrow. I’m gonna have to phone them at some point and query it because I can’t be £1000 down this term!

Caught up on a bit of reading today. Took The Master and Margarita into Costa today and read a chapter over a coffee. It’s a pretty awesome read actually. It’s a Russian tale of weirdness and dark magic but it’s very cleverly written and definitely worth looking at!

Went to the Mexican restaurant in Orpington for dinner. It was lovely food and I’m completely stuffed after banoffee pie for dessert.

Packing for Aber tomorrow. Looking forward to going back and seeing Hayley and Annica, just getting back into things. Will miss home lots though!

TITLE: Snow White: The Fairest Of Them All
STARS: Miranda Richardson, Kristin Kreuk, Warwick Davis
DIRECTOR: Caroline Thompson
RELEASED: 2001

So, last night I finally got round to watching this long-time resident on my Sky + planner. “A gothic horror twist on the classic fairytale” sounded like my perfect film. Naturally, I expected the traditional Grimm story but with some possible gore-sodden scenes added to a little bit of weird sexual fetishism but what I got was something different and in fact, something much deeper with a credible message lodged in its heart.

Snow White’s widowed father is granted three wishes by a devilish spirit, which sees him become king next to a queen, who has been granted her beauty by the same spirit. On smashing her magic mirror, the shards of glass fly across the kingdom, a fragment settling in the king’s eye and another in his heart. As Snow White grows into the beautiful princess she is, the queen’s jealousy is ignited and her wrath is emitted, when she recklessly uses a bewitched handheld mirror to curse innocents, causing Snow White to flee into the forest. The rest is pretty much written. Oh, except for the fact that the prince has been turned into a bear and one of the dwarves is actually quite a tall man!

The subplot of the dwarves, each dressed in a colour of the rainbow and named after a day of the week, keeps the film funny and light-hearted, while the main story clearly deals with some pretty dark stuff. In fact, an example of each of the deadly sins can be identified in this very film.

  • Envy– The queen is envious of Snow White’s beauty
  • Pride– The amount of mirrors and their significance in this film says it all.
  • Gluttony– The queen cooks what she believes to be Snow White’s heart and feeds it to her husband. There is also the poisoned apple, of course, an example of food being deadly.
  • Greed– Riches, men, beauty… the queen wants it all!
  • Wrath– Again, there is plenty of anger inside that queen, particularly after learning the huntsman hasn’t done his job right.
  • Sloth– There seems to be a great deal of not doing things for yourself. I guess that was authenticity with regard to the time period but it’s only after the huntsman fails that the queen gets her hands dirty.
  • Lust– I have never seen such a terrified face on a young man’s face as that on Tyron Leitso’s (who plays the prince), when he realises the queen wants him. Sadly, on his wise escape, he is struck by the handheld mirror and transformed into a bear. Odd.

The film does take a little while to get into and half an hour in, you’re still wondering why one of the dwarves isn’t a dwarf and who exactly is the strange warty man, who came from under the ice but it certainly has its moments of amusement. Maybe not the sort of graphic gothic I was expecting and hoping for but plenty of magical, warped strangeness.

After studying Angela Carter, back in first term of uni, and after much thought following this, I was already aware of how dark fairytales really are. They’re full of hidden meanings and the amount of references to sex and violence shock and appal you, when you become an adult and stop taking them at face value, like you did as a kid. Thank God you did, though!

Director Caroline Thompson clearly wanted to depict the story as a fable with something left at the end for the viewer to take away and learn from, therefore putting something real into something fantastical. I believe the moral to Thompson’s film is this: be happy in the body you were born into, believe that you are the fairest of them all.