Dan Harmon: "I believe in magic. I believe in mythology. I believe in shamanism. I believe that spells can be cast and I believe that random things coalesce and reveal themselves to be part of a plan we don’t control, you know."
Nora Ephron: "Never turn down a front-row seat for human folly."
Lord Vetinari, Unseen Academicals: "One day I was a young boy... when I saw a mother otter with her cubs. Even as I watched, the mother otter dived into the water and came up with a plump salmon, which she subdued... As she ate it, while of course it was still alive, the body split and the pink roes spilled out much to the delight of the baby otters. Mother and children dining upon mother and children. And that is when I first learned about evil. It is built into the very nature of the universe. Every world spins in pain. If there is any kind of supreme being, it is up to all of us to become his moral superior."
McAlvie "The ultimate downfall of modern civilization won't be war; it'll be Twitter and Facebook."
Jenny Zhang: "A lot of writers swear by routine, but I swear by chaos. There’s enough fucking routine in my life. Every day I have to brush my teeth. Every day I have to smile at strangers. Every day I have to worry about money. Every day I want something I can’t have. Every day I find some way to go on! I know that writing every day for an hour would help me tremendously with writer’s block, but I also know that I need an element of wildness in my writing. I need to know that writing is something I do because it sets me free. It makes me feel golden with confidence. It gives me the gift of gab. I feel like a god. I feel like an entertainer. So write when you damn well please."
Joe Queenan: "If you have read 6,000 books in your lifetime, or even 600, it's probably because at some level you find "reality" a bit of a disappointment. People in the 19th century fell in love with "Ivanhoe" and "The Count of Monte Cristo" because they loathed the age they were living through. Women in our own era read "Pride and Prejudice" and "Jane Eyre" and even "The Bridges of Madison County"—a dimwit, hayseed reworking of "Madame Bovary"—because they imagine how much happier they would be if their husbands did not spend quite so much time with their drunken, illiterate golf buddies down at Myrtle Beach. A blind bigamist nobleman with a ruined castle and an insane, incinerated first wife beats those losers any day of the week. Blind, two-timing noblemen never wear belted shorts."
LogicalDash: "Nobody of any age should have to fend off sexual partners. That such defense is assumed as a part of the cost of adult courtship is suggestive of some more fundamental problem than age difference and its effect on consensuality."
Keith Richards: "I had to invent the job, you know," he said, earlier. "There wasn't a sign in the shop window, saying, "Wanted: Keith Richards."
Caitlin Moran: "As I started to reassess my writing style, I thought about what I liked doing--what gave me satisfaction--and realized the primary one was just... pointing at things. Pointing out things I liked, and showing them to other people--like a mum shouting, "Look! Moo-cows!" as a train rushes past a farm. I liked pointing at things, and I liked being reasonable and polite about stuff. Or silly. Silly was very, very good. No one ever got hurt by silly.
Best of all was being pointedly silly about serious things: politics, repression, bigotry. Too many commentators are quick to accuse their enemies of being evil. It's far, far more effective to point out that they're acting like idiots, instead. I was up for idiot-revealing.
"I am just going to be polite and silly, and point at cool things," I decided. "When I started writing, I would have killed to have one thing to write about. Now, I have three. Politeness and silliness, and pointing. That's enough."
Carolyn Hax: "Unless 15 years’ worth of mail has misled me, no one has ever found love through complaining about the lack of it, and no lonely person has ever felt better for hearing, “You just haven’t found the right person yet.”
David Simon: "Change is a motherfucker when you run from it."
Joe Queenan: "People who read an enormous number of books are basically dissatisfied with the way things are going on this planet. And I think, in a way, people read for the same reason that kids play video games ... they like that world better. It works better, it's more exciting, and it usually has a more satisfactory ending."
Dan Savage: "There isn't someone for everyone. Some of us do wind up alone, and that just fucking sucks and sometimes that stings, and you don't know if you're one of those people who's going to wind up alone until you die alone....So you kind of have to live in hope and build a life for yourself that's rewarding and fun, has friends and pleasure in it, whether you're alone or not."
the painkiller: "I will not be tagged, pinned, circled, liked, tweeted, retweeted or numbered."
Steve Jobs: "Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.
Again, you can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”
Apple: "Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do."
Miss Manners: "Please do not -- repeat, not -- make a hostile approach to knitters. Have you not noticed that they are armed with long, pointy sticks?"
Stephen Tobolowsky: "And of course, nothing is what I figured on in my life. That seems to be a recurring theme."
James Bulls: "When you find yourself walking a true path, you will know it because you will want to walk it no matter the burning Sun, freezing sleet, torrential rain, and treacherous ground. The risks become no less and the journey as always exhausts you, but your desire to brave the challenges never diminishes."
Amy Argetsinger: "Twitter is a disease, plain and simple. It makes people insane. A decade from now I expect the CDC and FDA will be issuing warnings."
Cary Tennis: "You don't have to "move on" either. Not until you're ready. People say, Oh, you should be grateful. They say, Oh, it's time for you to move on. I'm like, What are you, a cop with a nightstick? I'll move on when I'm done playing the blues on my harmonica, thank you very much."
Mark Morford: "It is 2011 and here is what we know: Reality is fluid, fact is malleable, cause and effect completely uncertain. We know what we don't know, but we also know the opposite."
Charlie Jane Anders: "Just remember, if you flinch from your destiny, you'll never achieve your true greatness — you didn't choose to be chosen, but being chosen means you have to choose."
Roger Ebert: "To put it bluntly, I believe the world is patriarchal because men are bigger and stronger than women, and can beat them up."
Myca: "Jesus is not the reason for the season, and there's no way I need to act like he is. Christmas is a stolen tradition. There's no reason we can't steal it back."
Lady Gaga: "I hate the holidays! I'm alone and miserable, you fucking dumb bit of toy!"
Dianna Agron: "I am trying to live my life with a sharpie marker approach. You can’t erase the strokes you’ve made, but each step is much bolder and more deliberate."
John Mayer: "It occurred to me that since the invocation of Twitter, nobody who has participated in it has created any lasting art. And yes! Yours truly is included in that roundup as well. Let me make sure that statement is as absolute and irrevocable as possible by buzzing your tower one more time: no artwork created by someone with a healthy grasp of social media thus far has proven to be anything other than disposable."
Vanessa, Something Positive: "I like 'em crazy. You hear insane rants, I hear a reminder that the sex is interesting. Oooh! Hear that? Tonight's gonna tingle."
Anonymous: “Your problem is that you want to be an artist. What you need to be is an artisan.”
Sugar: "Ask better questions, sweet pea. The fuck is your life. Answer it."
Wide Lawns: "Often very odd things happen to me. Usually they are not my fault and mostly beyond my control."
Anonymous reporter: “When weird shit happens around here, weird shit really happens around here.”
Anne Johnson: "Today some stranger sent me an email that said, "You are a nut case." Well, I must admit this never would have occurred to me. Everyone else is a nut case. I'm the sane one. I think."
Carl Mayer: "Whenever I start to feel like my life isn’t where I want it to be, “Cops” is there to put everything into perspective. Yeah, I haven’t made all the right moves over the last 34 years, but I’m not hiding from the police under a kiddie pool, either."
John Scalzi: "In retrospect, it’s a little weird to think that my entire future was falling into place as I obliviously tucked into the El Presidente chimichanga platter, but of course, that’s life for you — the most important days of your existence don’t always announce themselves in obvious ways."
Tart and Soul: "Indeed, love comes whether we have braced ourselves for it or not. But commitment offers a choice, tapping us on the shoulder to say, “sorry to bother you. Is this a good time?”
J.C. Hutchins: "I was Wanky McWankerton, in love with words I’d yet to write. I did this for nearly two years. If every sperm is sacred, God wasn’t irate with me — he was effing thermonuclear."
Beth Sekishiro: "You don't need to be conventional to love people. Maybe you've got to give up your whole life - but that's just when you'll find it."
As a rabid Whedonite, I simply had to go home and download In Your Eyes. Is it worth your $5 and suffering through the hell that is streaming video because it took me like an hour to get it working? YES, YES IT IS.
(note: after looking on Whedonesque, here's some tips on how to get the damn video to work. I got it to work by clicking off and on on the "HD" setting at the bottom right until one of them worked.)
The plot reminded me of the following works of fiction:
Sleepless in Seattle, for the part where they aren't together for most of the movie.
The book Being Of Two Minds, which I am totally gonna guess Joss must have stumbled across at some point. That book features two kids living in different countries (one of them's even a prince!) who end up passing out/sort of having a seizure periodically, and when one of them does it, the other mentally sees the same thing that the other kid is seeing right now. Connie is visiting Rudolph when he gets kidnapped and has to get herself to Thulgaria to rescue him. Uh...loved this book as a kid.
Anyhoo: Dylan and Rebecca have a similar problem: they've been off-and-on seeing, hearing, and smelling things that the other one is doing since they were kids and Rebecca had a nasty sledding accident. I'm not sure why their contact has worked intermittently since then (they sort of know things that have gone on with each other, but not everything), but it finally goes full blast in this movie after Dylan gets hit in a bar fight...and Rebecca also goes flying at a dinner party.
The two of them are pretty drastically different, or at least one would wonder how they'd have gotten along without this circumstance going on. She's a fragile bird in a gilded cage with a prominent doctor husband (Mark Feuerstein sure does seem to play that sort of dude/doctor a lot) who of course thinks she's going insane. He's an ex-con who did a couple of years for lockpicking and is currently being watched over by his parole officer while he works a boring car wash job and debates going back to the criminal life. But once they figure out they can hear the other speaking, HOO BOY, DOES THIS EVER GET WORKING. (No mind reading occurs. Or time travel either--just different time zones, har.)
Think of all of the times that you've had to watch some couple on TV or movies with zero romantic chemistry. My pet peeve of boring these days is Jack and Margaux on Revenge, but we've all got our "who cares, these two have zero sexual chemistry" folks out there. Let me tell you about this movie: THESE TWO HAVE WHOPPING SEXUAL CHEMISTRY AND CHARM DESPITE LIVING IN DIFFERENT STATES AND NOT BEING ON CAMERA TOGETHER. It is ADORABLE. For those who claim there aren't too many romantic movies these days--this movie delivers the steam and charm and repartee and fun. Looking at their smiles and their eyes and the fun that they have trying to help each other out--it's just great. Particularly notable scenes are when Dylan helps Rebecca fix her car easily without having to pay gajillions at the mechanic's (oh, don't all of us wish we had that going on, says she who's taking an auto mechanics class right now and doing it the hard way), and when Rebecca is egging Dylan on to ask out the girl he likes and getting all invested in his date. Despite the two different worlds, the two hit it off and just talk and talk and talk whenever they can, even if it means that they're making other people think they are crazy with the self-conversation, only some of which can be covered up with fake phone calls. I don't know if I'd quite call it Nick and Nora-y banter--they're not quite that sort--but their chats range from teasing fun to serious pondering and remembering and delving into the best friendship they've ever had. When Dylan's boss gripes at him to be in the now, you're all "Why would he want to? His imaginary friend here is a lot more fun." They make each other's intolerable lives bearable just by being able to talk to each other.
I've mentioned that other people think they're crazy what with the out loud chats all the time. Of course that leads to the inevitable not-great developments that start happening in Dylan and Rebecca's lives, and one of which finally makes things urgent that they meet. I'll talk about that below the spoiler cut, but I will say that it's not so much of a typical Whedon gutpunch, if that worries you. Which if you're a fan of this guy, you are probably worried about. At any rate, I deeply enjoyed it, I wish I could buy it rather than rent (though looks like that will never be an issue :(), and I hope to god I can find the spare time in my busy life schedule to watch it again before it expires on me.
I'm not gonna deny there's some cliche-ish stuff in here, which I gather is bothering most professional reviewers. Frankly, I liked the performances so much that I did not give a crap. If you like romance, this is for you.
"And it is a contradiction, which is actually what I’d like to
talk to you about: the contradictions between your body and your mind,
your mind and itself.
I believe these contradictions and these tensions are the greatest gift we have and hopefully I can explain that.
But first let me say that when I talk about contradiction I’m talking
about something that is a constant in your life and in your identity.
Not just in your body, but in your own mind in ways that you may
recognize and that you may not.
Let’s just say that, hypothetically, two roads diverged in a wood and
you took the path less traveled. Part of you is going, “Look at that
path over there! It’s much better! Everybody’s traveling on it and
it’s…it’s paved and there’s like a Starbucks every 50 yards… This is
wrong. This path’s got nettles and Robert Frost’s body and… somebody
should have moved that, right? It feels weird.”
Not only is your mind telling you this, it is on that other
path. It is behaving as if it is on that path, it is doing the opposite
of what you are doing. And for your entire life you will be doing, on
some level, the opposite of not only what you are doing but of what you
think you are. That is just going to go on.
And what you need to do is to honor that. To understand it. To unearth it. To listen to this other voice.
You have, which is a rare thing, the ability and the responsibility to
listen to the dissent in yourself. To at least give it the floor.
Because it is the key, not only to consciousness, but to real growth.
To accept duality is to earn identity, and identity is something that
you are constantly earning. It is not just “who you are,” it is a
process that you must be active in.
And it’s not parroting your parents or even the thoughts of your
learned teachers, it is, now more than ever, about understanding
yourself so you can become yourself.
I talk about this contradiction and this tension… There’s two things I
want to say about it. One, it never goes away. And if you think that
achieving something, if you think that solving something, if you think a
career or a relationship will quiet that voice? It will not.
If you think happiness means total peace, you will never be happy.
Peace comes from the acceptance of the part of you that can never be at
peace. They will always be in conflict and if you accept that,
everything gets a lot better!"