What They Blogged For.

Love. Hate.

Before we say our final goodbye, I just wanted to leave you with a random sampling of posts from some of my favorite people on this blog:

Benjie’s Skyrim addiction.

Occam Razor on “The Seven Robots You Meet In Heaven.”

Benjie and I watching New Moon and The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants 2.

A Movie Script Ending.”

The MPDG vs. the Amazing Girl, Heroes vs. BSG, and Kirsten Dunst vs. Kate Hudson.

Peanut St. Cosmo saying goodbye to her Blackberry.

(And really, just anything by Peanut, cause there’s too many to list.)

Fuck Yeah Sayid!

Anytime we talked about Lost.

High Fidelity vs. 500 Days Of Summer.

Hey, Shitface, Get Off My Lawn!”

Benjie and August Bravo on internet hype, and meeting expectations, and also Super 8.

Independence Day 2?

The end of the Counterforce podcast, and the birth of Time Travel Murder Mystery.

J Fran Fran.

Jonathan Franzen and his “Strong Motion.”

Benjie on his favorite sequel ever.

Occam Razor on a post peak oil world, and big booty bitches.

Benjie on how to properly spend New Year’s Eve.

While my torrent gently downloads” by Benjamin Light.

This is by no means a complete list, not at all. It is, in fact, an extremely rushed list. And may actually be a really terrible retrospective, at least in terms of showing what we did best, when we did our best, but oh well.

It’s just a few of my favorites. I would invite you to explore further, if you get the chance.

The girl most likely to…

I really want to see An Education, the new movie based on the memoir of the same name by Lynn Barber, directed by Lone Scherfig, and adapted for the screen by Nick Horny.

The story seems interesting enough, about a 16 year old girl named Jenny in 1960s England with a normal mum and dad who’s working hard at her studies with plans to go to Oxford. And then she meets an older man, played by Peter Sarsgaard, who sweeps her off her feet with romance and the jet set travels of his swinging friends and leads her slowly down the path to ruin and the eventual growth into a woman. There’s more to that, much more, but I’ll spare you the details unless you’re truly interested.

First thing you should know, impressionable ladies of any age: Stay the fuck away from Peter Sarsgaard. He just looks like he’s out there to scoop up impressionable young girls.

But in all seriousness, the real reason I want to see this movie, besides the fact that it just looks good and has been getting incredibly positive reviews, is it’s lead, Carey Mulligan.

Ah…

I’ve only been lucky enough to catch her in a few things here and there, but she’s always come off as a young actress of grace and intelligence. And there’s an adorableness factor that’s truly undeniable. But all that ties into the fact that in one instant she can seem so young, so painfully, beautifully young, full of innocence and wide eyed wonder of the world, and then she can turn in an instant, those large eyes quivering with sadness, and then turn again, staying in the realm of adulthood, moving from the sadness to the joy of growing up. And she does it all with something that I never honestly thought I’d ever find in a living human being: grace.

I should also add, since I am a nerd, that I originally caught her in an episode of Doctor Who, the classic “Blink,” which I would highly recommend not only as an excellent piece of science fiction storytelling, but because it’s a stand alone episode, featuring solely Carey Mulligan’s one off character, the unstoppably inquisitive Sally Sparrow, girl detective, as she faces off against a mysterious mansion and one of the scariest bit of creatures (it is almost Halloween, after all) you’ll ever see: The Weeping Angels.

To say more would be criminal, but I’d give my highest recommendation to that episode, written by the genius Steven Moffat (set to take over the reins of Doctor Who early next year) and Carey Mulligan’s performance in it especially. She not crafts an energetic and intelligent young character who loves a good mystery, but she manages to create a role you fall in love with instantly. It’s a joke I make quite frequently on this site, but I’d truly give just about anything to see a spin off with her character in it (as opposed to the bisexual Nigel Kneale ripoff that is Torchwood on it’s better days).

Carey Mulligan is only 24 and already has a wide variety of film and television roles under her belt. Other than An Education now, she’ll also appear in the Natalie Portman/Tobey Maguire/Jake Gyllenhaal remake of Brothers, as well as Oliver Stone’s Wall Street 2 and Mark Romanek’s adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go.

Nick Hornby, who you of course know from his earlier works like High Fidelity and About A Boy, and who adapted the autobiographical memoir by Barber into An Education, also has a new book about called Juliet, Naked. And I hear it’s actually pretty good.

“She’s a suburban girl who’s frightened that she’s going to get cut out of everything good that happens in the city. That, to me, is a big story in popular culture. It’s the story of pretty much every rock ‘n’ roll band,” said Hornby about the character in the book version of An Education. Interesting the way he frames that, but when asked about the actual writing of a teenage girl, as opposed to just a man who’s whole live revolves around music and quim, Hornby said, “I think the moment you’re writing about somebody who’s not exactly you, then the challenge is all equal. I was glad that everyone around me on this movie was a woman so that they could watch me carefully. But I don’t remember anyone saying to me, ‘That isn’t how women think.’”

If not stopped, I could potentially post pictures of Carey Mulligan here forever.

What came first, the music or the misery?

People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery, and loss. Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?

Marco Sparks: So, the other day I sent an email to Peanut and I said, “Hey Peanut, let’s break the rules a little bit. Valentine’s day is coming (how fitting that it’d be right after a Friday the 13th this year), or rather, ‘Single Awareness Day,’ for some of us, right? Let’s do a post about love and music, and the thing that’s on a lot of our minds a lot of the time: heartbreak.” And to that Peanut said…

Peanut St. Cosmo: happy fucking valentine’s day! what does that all mean anyway? take advantage of “the one you love”  for 364 days out of the year (365 if it’s a leap year, booyah!) and for one day, other than your anniversary or birthday, that you actually say, hey, i love you. and shit. but sometimes you’re single and broken up and bitter. or not bitter, but single and listening to music that reminds you of when that uselessmotherfuckerwhoalwayscamebeforeme was in your life. takes you back to those days, pre-break up. pre-independence. pre-whatever. but, grieving aside, you know you’re better for it. all that nastiness and chocolate eating aside, it happened and you came out of it alive. but what was the music that helped you shovel your way out of it?

Marco: An excellent question. But I’m going to let you take that one first, Peanut.

Peanut: in the love life, there has been some heartbreak that soiled the kleenex for the great and amazing peanut st. cosmo. one of which shall be referred to here as Mr. X. and i think it goes without saying that he sucks. a lot. like a snake, this little penguin shed a layer of skin and wiggled out of it to reveal something even better than before! and, in the process of all this wiggling, sad bastard music was discovered! circa 2004ish, death cab for cutie made a grand debut upon my brain…

that’s “title and registration” and why is it appealing? listen. just listen. and picture yourself in a car finding something from an ex and then doing some crying, and maybe a little dry heaving, and finding yourself breathing into a paper bag. but, hey, that’s your business. “there’s no blame for how our love did slowly fade. and now that it’s gone, it’s like it wasn’t there at all. here i rest where disappointment and regret collide.” who doesn’t get suckered into that hot, sticky mess? marco?

Marco: I think it would be remarkably easy to get stuck in that adorable mess, my dear. But that’s a story for another time. And speaking of time… they say it heals all wounds, don’t they? Well, between you and me, we both know that’s bullshit. There is no such thing as closure, just distance. You just have to get away until it stops hurting and something else fills the hole. Sometimes it’s someone else. Or some new great part of your life. Sometimes it’s yourself. But for our argument today, it’s music. Sweet, sweet music. And when a relationship ends, regardless of who ended it or why, it’s sad. Something special between two people is gone and someday you know you’ll look back on the good times so fondly, but that time isn’t here yet, is it? You just need to get away, but no matter how far you go… Well, I think the title of this song says it all: “Sometimes I Still Feel The Bruise” by Trembling Blue Stars.

What do you say to that, Peanut?

Peanut: another great like (not love, mind you, no, not love) was a magnificent bastard that we shall call MOT. this was circa 2002ish. the timing was terrible. i never actually got to know him. i did, enough for that fish hook to get stuck in my lip and to throw me absolutely for a loop. sadly he had morals in the middle of my shit sandwich, so he bowed out and left me wondering for the rest of my life… what could have been? what should have been? whywhywhy????? and in there somewhere was this…

linkin park. i know, i know. but hey, as it says in the bible, the new testament to be exact: let he who is without musical sin, cast the first stone. so suck it.

Marco: Uhhh…

Peanut: and that brings us all to this little spot. his name is not important. this happened some time ago. by now he should have been musical or otherwise drowned out. it should all be ancient history, but every so often i look around and find shattered glass on the ground and i think, “why hasn’t this been swept up? because it isn’t time yet, annoyingly.

so what do i do?

keep trying and put more shit on top and one day it takes too much effort to resurface. so it stays buried. in theory.

Marco: Well said, Peanut, and thankfully, it almost makes up for the Linkin Park mention. Almost :P

Usually when  a relationship ends for me, or an infatuation, or whatever, it’s devastating. You can ask anyone, but I go into apocalyptic mode. I do the full on “Nobody will ever love me! It’s the end of the world!” and it gets pretty sad and pathetic and usually stops just short of writing absolutely horrid poetry. Let’s face it, a smart person never admits to writing truly lovesick poetry, right? Let’s all keep it that way, shall we?

The conversation we’re having here about the music that we use like drugs and medicine to get us through the romantic bad times is, well, this is a dialogue that could go on for a long time. It’s a question I have a lot of answers to (For example: Just broke up with someone? Listen to Beck’s Sea Change album incessantly and call me in the morning), but I’m going to try and encompass it all in one song here, the mega pill:

That’s “Like I Do” by Minipop and I think it says everything I want to say simply and succinctly. “Maybe tonight I’ll focus on the letters I should write” is right. And I think we’ve all learned something here today. Right, Peanut?

Peanut: what have i learned from all of this? nothing! that’s why i keep making the same mistakes again and again! until gravity hits like hurricane katrina and no one cares for this penguin anymore… but in the meantime, at least i know the music will be there to keep me cold :)