metamorphosis…

illustration by nan lawson
illustration by nan lawson

Part of my New Year’s resolutions is to read at least six books. So far I’ve clocked five and because in a weird coincidence in which three people unbeknownst to one another recommend Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis,” that is now officially  next on my list. I couldn’t resist buying this Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition! Others I have conquered this year are: HP Lovecraft’s Call of Cthulhu and Other Strange Stories, The Complete Poems of Dorothy Parker, John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, my 4th grade copy of A Wrinkle in Time, and Ender’s Game, which blew my mind.

Here’s to the love of reading!

Anna Kendrick

Anna Kendrick first won me over in CAMP and then again in UP IN THE AIR. Lately, however, she’s stolen the show again in the sleeper comedy PITCH PERFECT and Universal Studios decided to take her step-cup-acapella (technical term I just made up) routine to the next level, remix it, and turn it into a single. Enjoy!

42 :: a review of sorts

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After finally seeing 42, I walked way with mixed feelings that are more accurately expressed in this NPR article: When Audiences Go To The Movies Out Of Moral Obligation

However, …

42 was amazing for what it meant and what it pulled off. It was reassuring seeing someone I only heard about, read about, gracing the screen and being represented; someone that truly hit close to home. I teared up out of joy as the Kansas City Monarchs came into play and when Pee Wee Reese of the Dodgers slung his arm around Jackie Robinson I nearly balled.

42 produced powerful moments, but in-between these stunning visuals, I was left wanting more. Harrison Ford playing Branch Rickey came off too preachy and singsongy. Likewise, there didn’t seem to be much of a story arch. There was a beginning, a definite middle, and then the credits rolled; the finished product barely scratched the surface. Some walked out of the theater. Others clapped and hollered every time Chadwick Boseman – personifying Jackie Robinson – crossed home plate…

I love the movies, and as I said before, it was great seeing my parents’ and grandparents’ generation’s hero come up to the plate in such a grand, Hollywood-produced style (pun intended). It wasn’t the best movie I’ve seen in a while, but it served it’s purpose, the black community, and hopefully because of it, more and better crafted films will come from it.

Mr. Lincoln, I presume?

I’ll never tire of DC.

I took the 10PM train and accidentally got off in Baltimore at 1AM. I had fallen asleep and so when I heard, “Last stop, Washington DC,” I bolted awake and got off the train. Little did I know is that the conductor meant generally speaking the last stop on my train was Washington DC. A police officer helped me out in the end, haggled with an Somalian cab driver, and so I took a $90 taxi into DC.

Saturday was less stressful. Ingrid and I headed down to the Cherry Blossom Parade and saw Georger, Nancy, Wen and Joanne briefly. Paper lateens floated in the sky, a tap dancing troupe entertained us, and even penny-farthing riders amused our spring time sensibilities. On the way to the Library of Congress we picked up tickets for the White House Garden Tour for later in that afternoon.

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One of my goals in DC was to find my family’s book that my great aunt and uncle put together. It’s called, “LeBlanc / Carrier / Hollier, A Family History.” The security guard in the main building was quite obstinate and after several rounds of bringing my purse and camera in and not bringing my person and camera in with eventually bringing my purse’s contents in a plastic bag and camera in, Ingrid and I settled in the dim, cold card catalogue room located off of the back of the Main Reading Room. Side note, no card has been made since 1980!

Words fail me as I saw my family’s book open before me in the Library of Congress. I thought of Aunt Lee and how proud she’d be to see our book, all bound officially together by The Library of Congress, and know that it had a true, permanent place in our nation’s history. The book itself was completed in 1997 and submitted in 1999, so it was weird seeing myself listed as just completing the second grade or that my cousin Derek dreamt of becoming an engineer. I’m happy to note that I went onto graduate from the 4th grade successfully and that Derek became a legit scientist ;D

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After that leap back into my family’s history, and after getting my darn purse back, Ingrid and I met up with her friend and headed to The White House. This round of security was easy peasy compared to The Library, and I still can’t believe how close we got to The White House! A band was playing off to the side of the lawn, we were able to see the vegetable gardens and trees of presidents past had planted, and the kids’ swing set was pretty awesome. I really don’t know how the kids on this tour refrained from running and playing on the set. Perhaps it was the forbidding secret service agents standing on guard or the snipers clear as day poised on The White House roof. I only suppose they were snipers…

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After the garden tour, the three of us headed over to the GWU area and had a late lunch at Cosi. Ingrid expertly infiltrated their old dormotory and gained us access onto the roof. We could see everything from there! The Kennedy Center, airport, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, it was all there, DC as far as I our eyes could see. It was nice to feel the warmth of the sun and aromas of spring after such a long winter in NYC.

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Ingrid and I were only able to rest up at her apartment for a little while before we headed back out again. We met up with my KU friends at Giovanni’s Trattu, a little Italian place in Dupont Circle. I missed Georger and her take it or leave it attitude and it was nice to hear about Margaret’s latest adventures. Wen, Nancy and Joanne were killing it in life as always (in the good sense) and Rebecca and I discussed the logistics of us possibly moving to Brooklyn. The food was good too.

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Rebecca, Margaret, Ingrid and I headed to the Lincoln Memorial after dinner to gaze up at our favorite president and read The Gettysburg Address. We laid down by the reflecting pool and talked about the three things we each wanted to do before we turned 25. Bats flew above us as the stars came to life and thought of all the people who stood where we were laying during The March on Washington.

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Getting to Margaret’s car was quite the adventure (Russia, anyone?) and our night ended at Shake Shack sharing a Fair Shake and watching on silent collegiant, women’s baseball.

Sunday began in Georgetown with brunch at Kafe Leopold with Callie. I had an awesome time catching up with her, comparing our latest oxfords, and exploring dusty, old bookshops.

As always it seems, my trip ended too early. I found myself at Union Station and eventually boarded my Megabus back to New York.