Thursday 20 October 2011

New photoblog

I know that it's a bit of a cliché and something that a rather lazy person would do (which I am obviously not), but decided to do that anyway - I've started a new photoblog!

The main theme of my blog will be Dublin - but not the popular landmarks and events, but rather more-than-meets-the-eye photography. I love this city and would like others to see it the way I do. Also, since the art of photography makes me see the lovely little things everywhere I go, I shall post something from other cities as well, every Friday. That is the plan, at least. The plan is also to post daily.

For a change - decided to put it up on Not the best blogging platform ever, but still worth to test.

New posts from the blog will be publicized on twitter, of course.

Thursday 22 September 2011

Love and horror

I've been going through a cinemaniac crisis lately, I simply couldn't enjoy any "diffcult" movie at all. And just when I was about to surrender and admit that brainwashink chick flicks are all that I can watch, my local cinema made me realize, that it wasn't a pathology, just a lack of the right stimulator. Yet another adaptation of one of my top favourite novels of all time, "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte, has made it to Dublin screens!

The film itself is a real masterpiece. I instantly fell for its raw beauty, darkness and mysterious atmosphere. It's been ages since I read the book (in Polish, sadly), so I might get vague about a detail or two, but it seems that the script is pretty close to the original story. At the time when I was reading the novel, I obviously paid more attention to the romantic thread, which is indeed beautiful, unusual and moving, but when watching the movie two days ago, something else has provided me with food for thoughts. Not the love of Jane and Edward, but Jane herself.

Even though she grew up in times when children had no rights whatsoever, nun's kane had to do for morality and the ultimate virtue of a woman was her constant ability to kneel in front of a priest and a rich master, she's always known better. She wasn't afraid of her mean aunt or the ruthless nuns, because she simply could tell right from wrong. She feared nothing, she didn't let anyone to mislead her, nor to terrorize her. She wasn't afraid of feeling love or hate, think for herself, decide on her own. Wise, unbreakable and passionate, she kept her inner world of dreams and beliefs, never losing even a bit of her dignity, in spite of the people around her, who tried very hard to kill the amazing personality she had.

I tend to say that the biggest inspiration in my adult life are Kurt Vonnegut's novels - indeed, thanks to this gentleman I keep looking at life a bit bitterly and not too serious, he was also the one to give me an idea of building my very own planet where I can go, when life on Earth is a bit too much to handle. But now, when I go back in time even further, I think it's Jane Eyre who made me keep my teeth and claws sharp over the years.

Ladies! When your daughters are grown up enough, make them read "Jane Eyre". They might not get it at first, but something will remain in the back of their heads for ever.

BTW, I did feel it before, but couldn't put my finger on it - "Twilight" was inspired big time by this story, don't you think?

Friday 17 June 2011

Evil never dead

No matter how decent your life is, doesn't matter if you live by the book, do not get in others' way and pay your taxes, sooner or later you will meet the evil. You can deny it, turn your back on it, cover up your eyes - sooner or later the evil will become so evil that you won't help noticing it. You'll find yourself standing like a deer in car lights, frozen with fear, waiting for the bumper to hit you instead of running for your life.

All that thoughts came to me yesterday, as I had a chat with a friend about serial killers. We've exchanged some opinions, F words (OK, that was one-sided actually, and that side was me) and wikipedia links. I might sound like a little princess, but my everyday mask of cold-blooded cynicism was melting as I dug through the description of all those bastards' deeds.

I must admit, I'm no saint. I tend to (ab)use some harmful substances, think of some inappropriate stuff and in the moments of great anger I wish some people badly, but in fact I had had no clue what evil really was like. And now I kinda regret that I got a clue, because the amount of evil ran me over like that poor deer that was too stupid to run while there was still time.

Look at any rap/hh video nowadays. It's not even about the songs themselves, which are truly horrible and appear to me as an insult to the music as a whole. I'm not happy with the way women are shown in them either. But the amount of physical violence is just unacceptable. Woman is strangled. Someone gets smacked in a face. A guy is gesticulating with a gun towards the camera. A GUN. That thing that sends at a huge speed a hot, sharp piece of metal towards a human being in order to cause injure, pain or even death.  People die of it. Where's fun in that? OK, chains, hot girls, swimming pool, limo. But gun? Violence? Why do we allow it?

All bad things that happened to me in the past are coming back to me now. Someone hit me hard with a rock at the back of my head (happened to me in a street once, like 15 years ago). My bike or my guitar stolen. An exhibitionist in a park showing me what he's got. Each time I felt pretty much the same way: confused, petrified, shocked, helpless. Why did they do that to me? What did I do to deserve this? How come that this fucked up person is let out loose? How can this person live with themselves?

Back to the serial killers, I was reading about Dahmer. The list of victims and details of his activity disgusted me, but what really made me think was the very ending of the article: inspirations. Books, graphic novels, songs, movies. How can one get inspired with something that horrible? What the hell is wrong with you, people? Why do you keep reviving that evil, what is it that fascinates you so much? Why do you want to show it to the world?

Please, stop doing it. Consider those who don't want to feel confused, petrified and helpless. There are so many funny, inspiring and lusciously nasty things around us: sex, booze (and things people do once they get enough of it in their systems :D), general absurd of corporate world, people's quirks, popculture... And yet some of you prefer relating to a guy who raped, killed, dismembered, ate the flesh and photographed the remnants of 17 boys and men? Seriously, WTF.

Sunday 12 June 2011

Play it again, VLC

My recent discovery in time management solutions is not the only brilliant idea I've had these days. At some point I realized that it's better to watch some good movie for zillionth time than watching something new that doesn't even seem good at first glance.

Seriously, how many times people throw themselves into watching a film even though they know it simply cannot be satisfying (because the story is a cliché, critics disapprove, cast sucks or whatever), only because it's newly released? Why bother and waste your time on some new, shiny crap, when you can go back to something good that you know that you've liked? I know that discovering and trying new things is exciting, but let's face it: if that freshly released film was really revolutionary, you would know it beforehand anyway.

I've got a few films that I like to go back to over and over again, and even though I've seen them several times, watching them again never feels like waste of time.

Here it goes:

Samotari (Loners)

A story of a bunch of young people living in Praha, whose paths cross in different, sometimes completely unexpected way. They love, cheat, fight, drink, seek for extra-terrestrials. Sometimes it gets funny, sometimes it gets ugly, but definitely not boring. Very 1990s movie, including the soundtrack.

film info @ IMDB

Cha no aji (The taste of tea)

Very weird and very cute movie, straight from Japan. The plot evolves around life of Haruno family residing in a village called Tochigi. Delightful sequence of images and sounds gives us an insight into the little world of each of the characters, not really telling us any story, yet a spectator has no idea when all that time disappeared when the movie's over. On top of that, ladies - Asano Tadanobu to drool on :) (and Shinji Takeda, but not much of him)

film info @ IMDB

Annie Hall

Couldn't miss Woody Allen's work in this list. Actually, when I feel like going back to some movie of my liking, then I could chose between few of his films, but this particular one would be, most of the time, my very first choice, because on top of classic Woody Allen "Neurosis and the City" theme, I adore Annie herself. She's crazy, complicated, a bit detached from reality, yet fun and very interesting. And that vision of LA - epic!

My favourite scene: Woody Allen approaches a random couple of beautiful, fashionable people in the street and demands to know the secret of their successful relationship. The answer pretty much says it all about relationships in general...

Les fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain

I love this picture for absolutely everything: Paris, humour, red colour, charming details, Mathieu Kassovitz, the cat, the dwarf...

I've seen this movie like 8-9 times and still counting. Lately I've been trying to watch the original version with no subtitles, discovering yet another aspect of the movie that I hadn't paid any attention to before. Quite nice language practice, may I say. I know this film so well that if all of its copies disappeared tomorrow, I'd be able to make this movie the way it was from scratch. True story.

"Harry Potter" saga

Cannot really say why exactly I like those films so much (the books were obviously much better), but the truth is Harry, Ron and Hermione have sort of moved in with me. My bf watches random scenes from random parts of the saga with his meals (like most of Internet addicts we eat in front of our PCs), I tend to watch HP when I have no energy to smile any more. Books aside, these pictures are just beautiful and charming. They are also incredibly good from technical point of view, take cast for instance - Rickman, Smith, Gleeson, Sutherland and many others, the fruit of the loom. My favourite part of the saga is "The Goblet of Fire", not only because it has Robert Pattinson in it, but also because of Malfoy turned into a ferret and the ship that Durmstrang gang came in. It cannot get any more awesome than that.

We NEVER use transfiguration as a punishment :D

Ame Agaru

You might think that I like only funny movies and treat watching them as a substitute for prozac. Most of the time I do, but there are some more serious pictures that I love as well. "Ame Agaru" is the last work of Akira Kurosawa, also claimed by himself as his most important one. It has all the features of samurai films, yet its message is far less obvious and one of a kind: what you do is less important than why you do it. The ending still remains open to guess and interpretation, to which I give my thoughts once in a while.

Tonari no Totoro (My neighbour Totoro)

One word: nekobasu :)

Dzień świra (Day of the wacko)

A day of life in Poland. Not sure if not too hermetic for non-Polish, but worth to mention. I still don't know who the real wacko here is: the main character or the people around him.

film info @ IMDB

Saturday 11 June 2011

Revolution in Time Management

Dear visitor!
If you made it to this page, you are most probably dealing with the same problem as many adult professionals - lack of spare time. But do not be afraid, my extremely simple and brilliant programme is exactly what you're looking for. Soon you will be able so stretch your spare time out, almost denying laws of physics.

I suppose that you, just like myself until only yesterday, were coping with the same pain every single day: you couldn't find a minute for your hobbies, little pleasures, housework etc. Time seems to be slipping through your fingers and before you know it, it's very late and you must go to sleep.

Some people are trying to torture themselves by neglecting their bodies and minds, buying more time with sleep deprivation or cutting down on housework. This is a very bad idea. Sleep deprivation causes lack of focus and motivation, so as a result we think slower and need even more time on anything, including work. Housework will not disappear by itself (there are of course some ways to make it faster, like a dishwasher, but I bet that soon buying tablets and putting crockery in and out of it would become overwhelming anyway).

You are getting more and more frustrated every day. You think that a day should have more than 24 hours, or that you work too much. You wish you could stop the time or become a robot and not being forced to sleep any more. Unfortunately, none of this would happen and you are like a fish in its last struggle for life when caught in a fisherman's net. You feel that time rules your life far too much.

It's still possible to change it! With my revolutionary tip all that feeling of frustration and unfulfilled life will be gone in no time. You shall become the master of your time again.

Listen to what my other clients have to say about Revolutionary Time Stretching Program:

Margaret, age 30
I work 40 hours a week excluding lunch, so about 45 hours a week in total. I cannot function well when I cut down on sleep or drink too much coffee. I could not find any time for studying French, housework, reading, yet at the end of each day I felt exhausted, because, as it seemed, I had been extremely busy. Thanks to this absolutely brilliant tip already on the very first day I was able to clean the bathroom, do my laundry, cook lunch for the following day, hoover my living room and write a brilliant blog entry, and even after completing that I was still full of energy.

Gryzelda, age 6
Mgrrrrr? Purr, purr, purr... Meooooow!
translation: Oh, you're finally home. Pet me and feed me. Now.

 Find out today what my amazing Revolutionary Time Stretching Program can do!

Here's where the PayPal link goes, but I give it all to you for free, because I'm a naive, sentimental idiot :D

This is my brilliant tip - use it and you'll soon experience more of a day in a day!

Here it goes:


I know, you might think that world will end if you don't check up on news and all friends will abandon you if you don't log in to facebook, but this is NOT TRUE. Just trust me on this - when you come home, do what you have to/want to do, and then turn your PC on. You will be surprised how much of spare time you've got.

Wednesday 8 June 2011

Dublin tale

Some time ago, early in the morning, when I woke up and went to balcony door to let my kitty out, I spotted this lovely picture:

Cannot say what I like about this photo the most. Is it the very surreal touch of something-reflecting-in-something-else type, or that lovely shade of blue, or maybe the shape of that bizarre vessel, reminding me of sports cars. Enough said, I felt a great urge to take this photo, put it up on FB and deviantart, and then relish the moment.
Two days later, the wind changed its direction and then I saw it all in a completely new perspective. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you a new, undiscovered side of my little surreal visitor:

Awww, isn't it cute? <3

All that story made me think a bit (I think too much, that's my problem, one of many, may I say) and finally I reached some conclusion, pick whatever you like the most:

- not everything is what it seems
- do not seek for a new meaning of something that has none
- even the biggest cliché has its absurd, surreal charm that begins and ends in your very own mind

Go seek for the surreal!

Sunday 5 June 2011

Children and grown-ups

This week, on Jun 1st, we celebrated International Children's Day in Poland. Funny enough, I got wishes and little gifts from my parents (mind that I'm 30). This made me a think a bit of adulthood and childhood.

Very often I get to hear from the adults that they'd like to be children again. Teenagers claim themselves proudly not being children any more. There seems to be a lot of myths and longings regarding childhood and I cannot understand why.

My childhood was not that much careless and happy (mostly because of frequent injuries, I've always been living on the edge), but wasn't miserable either, because I had a chance to grow up in a lovely house with a big garden, having lots of pets, family folks and children around me. Did not like school, but did not agonize over it either. Absolutely ordinary child living ordinary life.

But why would I miss it, anyway? Getting up at 7 every day to make it to school at 8? Spending vast amount of time on learning needless stuff? Listening to others telling me what to do? Carrying all that heavy books? Hell no!

Sure, it was great to have 2 months off. But anyway, my parents could not send me anywhere to any longer than 2-3 weeks for some summer camp, and for the rest of time I was just playing in the backyard or bothering my relatives, which was even more boring than my usual routine. Now it's pretty much the same - I take 2 weeks off and take off! And my possibilities are plenty, I can go anywhere I want, book a hotel and flight by myself and - luckily - not to worry about the budget too much.

My parents indeed provided for me. But does that mean that my life was careless and free of responsibility? Not really. I had to help my mom with cleaning, shopping and cooking, on top of that had to go to school, to a lot of homework and taking some extra classes (music, English) after school. Also, I started doing part-time job at the age of 15. Looking at the bigger picture, I think that the proportion of work and pleasure in my life was pretty much the same as it is now, and this is definitely a good thing. If your childhood was any more careless or care-loaded, then sorry to break this to you, but the happy period you miss so much does not look very happy to me.

I do miss some activities I did as a kid, like trees climbing, cycling or skipping rope, but who says I cannot go back to it? Sure, I'm much heavier, have a huge, fat ass and am a bit of lazy when it comes to physical activities, but it's not something I cannot cope with, that is, if I really wanted to.

Maybe that's really the thing you're all longing for - when you were kids, you wanted to do more. You miss it? Just get yourself together and want it again. Yes, it's that simple.

Kid up!