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Suffering Writer, Unappreciated Genius, and Bored Eccentric Scholarship Fund

My Life in Meta.

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Miss D
The Tortured, Undiscovered, Suffering Writer, Patron Saint of Literature, Unappreciated Genius, and Eccentric Spinster English Teacher and Monster Wrangler Scholarship Fund.

"Kels" means "hill", and "ey" means island, usually done as a suffix: o with a slash + y, also meaning "skills/scary", a small rocky island.

"So, my friend, after the example of the Phoenicians, you charted your course by the stars?"
"No, it was among the stars themselves I journeyed." ~3rd century Greek Philosopher Menippus.

"The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent on it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do." ~Galileo Galilei

"In the case of the artist, I don’t want them to represent reality because I have that via my own telescopes. I want and need the artist to take me to new places, and the new place that Van Gogh took me not the sky as it is but the sky as he felt it. And the more of us that feel the universe, the better off we will be in this world.” ~Neil deGrasse Tyson

Literature degrees should come with a warning label.
Warning: You will be an insufferable, long-winded smug bastard whenever you go to a film, read a book, or watch TV. You will also find a need to pass this on to others.

My philosophy is and always has been that analysis and symbolism can never be taken too far. Sure, it can be obnoxious and ridiculous and a downright impediment for living a full and normal life. But, no, it can never be taken too far.

A derogatory reference to a person obsessed with intellectual pursuits for their own sake, who is also deficient in most other human attributes so as to impair the person's smooth operation within society.
A person who relates academic subjects to the real world outside of academic studies; for example, using multivariate calculus to determine how they should correctly optimize the dimensions of a pan to bake a cake.
A person who has chosen concentration rather than conformity; one who passionately pursues skill and imagination, not mainstream social acceptance.
A person with a devotion to something in a way that places him or her outside the mainstream. This could be due to the intensity, depth, or subject of their interest.
A more recent school of thought sees nerd as being a derogatory phrase, while geek is simply a description. It is taken to be someone who is an enthusiast, often in things outside of the mainstream spectrum. It may also describe immersion in a particular mainstream interest to an extreme that is beyond normalcy. Of note is that in this definition, there is no reference to being socially inept in the slightest."

(A portrait of me by an incredibly symbolically-insightful first grader.)

"Like a space Gandalf. Like the little green one in Star Wars. I'm the Doctor. Because I can't see it any more. I'm 907. After a while, you just can't see it. Everything. I look at a star, and it's just a big ball of burning gas, and I know how it began, and I know how it ends, and I was probably there both times. Now, after a while, everything is just stuff. That's the problem, you make all of space and time your backyard and what do you have? A backyard. But you, you can see it, and when you see it, I see it." ~The Eleventh Doctor

"They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds... Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no [imagination]! There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight... But even if you did not see... what would that prove? ... The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see... You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding." --editor of the New York Sun
(Still remains my absolute favorite treatise on the nature of the metaphysical. I've read essays and diatribes and books on literary analysis. I've read some of the smartest minds humanity has ever borne. I've read my favorite, most beloved and brilliant authors discuss it with their most amazing pens. But, still, nothing hits on the nature of the importance of "lies", of "fiction", of story, of all those intangibles of love, poetry, faith, magic that are more true than anything, than that unknown editor of a New York Newspaper when replying to a little girl asking whether or not there is a Santa Claus.)

“We’re all a little weird. And life is weird. And when we find someone
whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall
into mutually satisfying weirdness—and call it love—true love.” ― Robert Fulghum

I'm a grouchy, whiny, overly-passionate and uberly-enthusiastic, obnoxious, slightly insane, opinionated, ridiculously optimistic, energetic, neurotic, overly-intellectual, geeky, childish, Falstaffian, goody-two-shoes, dorky, clumsy, chubby, bespectacled brunette nerd, control-freak, neat-freak, smart-ass, health nut, bookish, bratty spinster teacher, cat Lady.
I'm also pretty smart and nice.

There's nothing better than when amazing, beautiful people describe me:
"You have and always will be one of the smartest, most thoughtful, genuine, people that I know. I love you dearly, like a sister, and always will. Love you too, and also, thank you for being my friend you gorgeously delightful inspiration of a person xoxox" ~Sar
"You are one weird." --Billie
"She's so pretty... and so smart... if only she were nice." --my grandmother
"Princess Kelsey." --everyone, except Mo.
"Kelsey, you are 1% smart and 99% crazy."
"You were born after your time." --my mom
"You half-breed WOP." --my father
"My life with a drama queen." --Jess
“Cape”, “bookish”, "enthusiast", “hysterical”, “unique”, “delightful”, “fun”, “intelligent”--words my friends used to describe me.
"You're a witch!!!" --student, after I cured his hiccups
"You're psychic!!!" --another student after I read his mind
"Oh my god! You're a magician!" --kiddo
"You know everything, Miss D!" --kiddo
"But, Miss D, you're weirder than weird." --kiddo
"Miss D, the Pied Piper."~a parent, due to the kids loving my stories.
"Miss D, you're...." "A nerd?" "Yeah. And mysterious."
"It's your job to listen to me!" "OK, what?" "I don't have anything to say." ~story of my life
"All you do is read and eat vegetables." ~kiddo
"Miss D is the Chuck Norris of typing." ~kiddo
"Miss D, you are magic. That's why you run homework club." ~kiddo
"Miss D's better than bacon." ~kiddo
"Those kids bring out the worst in you."--my dad when I was misbehaving after work
"Miss D, do you know you smile a lot?"--kid. Everyone says I'm always smiling
"If you don't be quiet and behave, I'm going to send Miss D home early."--my boss
"You're a born teacher." --coworker
"Miss D is scary when she's in teacher mode."
"You're the most popular teacher." --kiddo
"[You're a teacher] because you like kids." --kiddo
"YOU'RE THE BEST TEACHER EVER! [gives me a hug] I don't even hug my parents!" --kiddo
"Sit right there and tell us a story!" --kiddo (also, a regularly spoken phrase to me, from kids in Kindergarten to eighth grade)
"I have the weirdest teacher ever!"--one of my kiddoes
"Tell me a fairy story!" --kiddo repeatedly
"One intelligent ho... [what was your first impression of me?] fucking nerd... [Describe me in 3 words]... obsessive compulsive disorder...[describe me to someone] fucking ridiculous... [What song reminds you of me?] titanic theme song (dance mix)." --Ryan
"[Have you ever considered getting help for your neurosis and psychosis?] I like to think of them as loveable quirks." --me
"It sounds like you're a dreamer." --Kinuko Y. Craft (yes, to me)
"Spending time with my family reminds me why I graduated Summa Cum Laude and still act like an idiot most of the time." --me
"With those baking skills and those hips, you'll make someone a wonderful wife." ~Dad
"Historically, when Lennon pretended to read he would say his pretend title then "by Illa Strated" Over the past month or so, he has started saying "by Aunt D" instead. I asked him if Aunt D writes a lot of books: "She writes ALL our books. She comes to our house and writes our books" - talk about celebrity status." ~Nicki
"With my family, all conversations turn bathroom-related and all cribbies are threats. With my sisters, all conversations turn to sex and anatomy and all cribbies are innuendos." ~me
"Jeopardy!" --my former flatmates' nickname for me whenever I spouted random "smart stuff"
"She's smoking a cigar?"--friend "Of course. She's Italian."--Chi Chi "Somehow, that seems to pardon all manners of sins."--me
"Kelsey, you are a wholly nerd." --Beth
"He's a hermit, but he doesn't do all cool things you do [points at my room]." --Tulsa
"I could hear her outside." "That's all right. All the neighbors already know she's..." "crazy?" "zonkers." --Dad and Chi Chi
"I just realized that about 80% of my friends are hipsters. And, I think I might be one, too. Except that I might be too much genuine. Particularly, genuine geek."--me
"Hickster." ~Mo
"Kelsey, you're shy, but you're also weird and crazy... well, you get a little scary when you're excited." --mother
"A little fangirl minx you are." --Duby
"I had a revelation about you: you're so retro!" --coworker on my style
"Somehow you manage to be the most and the least [mature and sophisticated]." --Billie
"Bi-polar."--my ma
"I could always go for a glass of wine." "That's why I like you, Kelsey."~Taylor
"Nature hates a vacuum, as does a Kelsey." ~Ma
"You keep the cemetery lively." ~old man on my daily walk
"Ok, I must be a wuss because she didn't even flinch." --old ex-sailor in the tattoo parlor
"[If you could travel through time with someone you know, who would you choose, and why?] I would take Kels with me. We are both fit and strong and with her knowledge of the times customs/speech/cultures etc.. and my practical knowledge of nature/edibles/animals, I think we could survive rather nicely."--Jess
"Rage smart." ~Billie two-word description of me drunk
"I'm very stoic, unemotional, and neurotic. I got that from the Dashner side." ~me "And you got a healthy dose of the Italian to balance you out." ~Dad, the Romantic dreamer
"Kelsey just kicked my city ass though! Holy smokes! That girl is like a steam engine up that mtn. ♥"~Sarah
"Rabbit." ~Tulsa's nickname for me
“I must endure Miss D.” --kid's vocabulary sentence
"Miss D's going to make me dance to the Village People!" --kiddo
"Miss D! You know everything! Did you read the dictionary or something?"--kiddo
“If I could put everything in my head at once I could be just like you… Without you I don’t think I could make it through this year.”--kiddo
"The rock star, Miss D." ~parent of a kiddo
"Miss D, all the children love you, and none of the other teachers can say that." ~kiddo, damnit, how can I ever complain about anything, after hearing that once in a lifetime?!
"Dangelos don't talk until they're 25. Then they don't shut up." ~my great-aunt
"All you do is read and eat vegetables."--perfect summation of my life from a kiddo
"Miss D, if you got paid for people liking you, you'd be rich." --kiddo that would never say anything like that
"Miss D is nice and evil at the same time."--kiddo
"Miss D. Miss D, Miss D, Miss D, Miss D." --all the kiddoes all the time
"Miss D can fix anything."~kid
"Miss D is a professional mountain climber."~kiddo
"Mrs. D." "There's no 'r'. I'm not married." "Yes, you are. You're married to your work." ~kiddo
"What are you doing, a report?" ~when I was just being me
"Miss D, you'll never be a spinster cat lady because you'll never be able to give up your hipster lifestyle."~kid
"The synonym for Ms. D is books." ~kiddo
"We love you! You are a ball of energy! Life without you would be dull and less full of joy." ~Ann
"You're a lying Italian hipster that likes literature." ~kid
"Ms. D, I love you with all my heart, as you know, you help me mature and grow as a person and I'm not scared to be myself around you. You will always be more than a teacher to me. You're my mentor, my friend, you will always be in my mind." ~written in my yearbook.
"Kelsey, I wish I could clone you." ~everyone.
"Ms. D, you're a thug vegan."~kiddo
"Being a hipster is too mainstream for you, Ms. D."~kiddo
"The cool teacher."~kiddo
"You're horrible in the best ways." ~Mo, my boyfriend.
"Any crazy you might have in you is well balanced. You really are a great combination. Earthy and practical, as well as imaginative and silly." ~Mo
"I like you just the way you are, even if you're a willful obstinate and wanton little hussy." ~Mo
"Brat." "Floozy bunny." "Fallen angel." "Horrible." ~also, my boyfriend.
"M'Lady." ~Moser
"I consider you more of a Lady. Princesses are all snotty and self involved. That doesn't sound like you at all. It's just that you're too self reliant to be what people usually mean by "princess". Besides a Lady has more dignity and confidence." ~Moser
"Well, rest assured, you are most definitely up to Mopar standard." ~Mo (the greatest compliment any woman has ever received from any man)
"Ms. D's a hipster, so she knows everything about literature and Abe Lincoln. And Narnia and Harry Potter." "All those things just make me a nerdy geek dork." "Yeah, but you like it, and that makes you a hipster."
"You need to be molding young minds. I don't know what I'd do it I hadn't had you, Ms. D." ~kiddo
"You go from super sweet to super brat, without spending much time in the middle." ~The Boyfriend
"Curses! You're a good teacher." ~Student after I explained to him why it seems that I am harder on some students than others (the old "equal isn't fair" thing)
“With a great teacher like Ms. D, you learn many things. I feel like you can’t go wrong.”~student
"I want to be an English teacher just like you, Ms. D." ~kiddo, great compliment ever.
"I can find the energy to be with you because I just imagine how much energy it takes to actually be you." ~Mo.
"Our Most Blessed Lady of the Books, I thank thee in the name of The Novel, the Tome, and the Holy Shakespeare, Amen."~Nicki
"Ask Kelsey to write that down." ~Emmy, my nephew
"Farouche: unruly or disorderly: wild. Marked by shyness and lack of social graces.
In French, farouche can mean wild or shy, just as it does in English. It is an alteration of the old French word forasche, which derives via Late Latin forasticus ("living outside") from Latin foras, meaning outdoors.
In its earliest English uses, in the middle of the 18th century, "farouche" was used to describe someone who was awkward in social situations, perhaps as one who has lived apart from groups of people. The word can also mean "disorderly", as in "farouche ruffians out to cause trouble." "Farouche is a very good word for you. Don't forget the disorderly part; it all comes together to describe you. My shy, feral, disorderly Lady." ~Mo
"It's your job to listen to me." "Ok, what?" "I don't have anything to say." --this is the story of my life
"My friend Miss D is a book nerd, a creative dresser, reads obsessively, and she likes cats. She is tall with wicked long hair and really skinny."~kiddo

Yes, Kelsey's brain, we all know you have a literature degree. Get over yourself.

"So I'm always delighted to discover people who do write from the brain, who take all the stuff I love instinctively and pick it apart through the magic of literary analysis and then explain it back to me in words I can understand. And nobody does that better, in the Dr Who world, than, Goldenmoonrose. Reading her posts is like have a post-episode cuppa or beer or hot whiskey with a really nice, friendly English professor (and knowing I won't have to write up anything about it later.) Certainly there's squee involved, but I particularly love the way she can go in and find threads and hints and whispers and weave them all together so gently and lovingly that all the themes suddenly become crystal-clear. To me, her writing it what great meta is all about. Oh, how I wish I were more articulate about reviewing this sort of thing!"~Just_Ann_Now about my Meta writings.

A Rabbit Noticed My Condition
I was sad one day and went for a walk;
I sat in a field.
A rabbit noticed my condition and came near.
It often does not take more than that to help
at times-- to just be close to creatures who
are so full of knowing, so full of love that they
don't chat, they just gaze with their marvelous
--St. John of the Cross (used by Tulsa to describe me)

The rabbit is a culture-bearer, a creature of intellect, wisdom, and “places its knowledge at the service of mankind”. “It is because he shares in the unknowable and the unattainable while still remaining mankind’s familiar friend and neighbor on Earth, that the mythic hare or rabbit is an intercessor and a go-between between this world and the transcendent realities of the Otherworld.” (Penguin Dictionary of Symbols)

Also, my eyes are really dark and I'm mischievous.

"Life's a climb, but the view is great." ~a student
There is no metaphor better than a mountain.
Particularly for my life.
It's hard work and achievement and freedom and strength and beauty.

I love my home, my Vermont. I love living inside of a fairy tale, in an enchanted forest that has taken back what time forgot. I need to live in a place where "green" is in the actual title. Also, Woman was not meant for flat ground. Or dry ground.

Here's some more quotes that describe my life by people who don't know me:

"When you sell a man a book, you don't sell him 12 ounces of paper and ink and glue--you sell him a whole new life."--Christopher Morley

"A face without freckles is like a night without stars." --Stephen Majercik

"Gentlemen, to the sewing machines!" --Big Bang Theory

"Perhaps I might add that I love my job... and I am in love with words. Among the many honors that have come to me... the greatest was being born in Vermont. For that I claim no credit." --Ann Batchelder

“…because nerds like us are allowed to be unironically enthusiastic about stuff… Nerds are allowed to love stuff, like jump-up-and-down-in-the-chair-can’t-control-yourself love it. Hank, when people call people nerds, mostly what they’re saying is ‘you like stuff.’ Which is just not a good insult at all. Like, ‘you are too enthusiastic about the miracle of human consciousness’.” ― John Green

"Sometimes, it's good to be a geek." --Star Wars Literary Critic

“Every author must have six essentials at his command… 1. empathy. 2. the willingness to endure solitude. 3. the belief that the world cares about what you have to say. 4. the ability to describe facial hair accurately. 5. a large desk in a quiet room of your own in which to chase your demons (preferably a circular room, so that the demons have no place to hide). 6. special stationery with pictures of typewriters and/or quills on top.”--John Hodgman

Lies they Told You Haiku #37
by Christopher Moore

Take My Word For It
Five New York Times Bestsellers
Spelling Doesn't Count

“‘The truly cultured are capable of owning thousands of unread books without losing their composure or their desire for more.’ That’s me! And you, probably! That’s us! …I suddenly had a little epiphany: all the books we own, both read and unread, are the fullest expression of self we have at our disposal.”--Nick Horby

"When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty, I read them openly. When I became a man, I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up."--C.S. Lewis

"If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales." "When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking."--Albert Einstein

“Humans need fantasy to be human. To be the place where falling angels meet rising apes.”--Terry Pratchett

“Getting an education was a bit like a communicable sexual disease. It made you unsuitable for a lot of jobs and then you had the urge to pass it on.”--Terry Pratchett

"I would rather be a teacher at a school (and I can think of nothing worse) than marry a man I did not like."--Jane Austen

"Helping people to learn is hard. No wonder teachers get paid so much." --My Name is Earl

"We're all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." --Oscar Wilde

"Be like a flower, who gives out fragrance even to the hand that crushes it."--Husain Hlaiyil

“In a very real sense, people who have read good literature have lived more than people who cannot or will not read.” –S.I. Hayakawa

“But words are things, and a small drop of ink.
Falling like dew, upon a thought, produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.”
~Lord Byron
Don Juan, Canto III, Stanza 88

When a traveler asked Wordsworth’s servant to show him her master’s study, she answered, “Here is his library, but his study is out of doors.”

"I have learned that the swiftest traveler is he that goes afoot." ~Thoreau

How I spend my time on this Earth:

Teaching rural New England tweenies the incredible, indescribable joys of reading and writing and time traveling, and also how to be human beings. I am a born teacher. I was called to it as nuns are called to a convent.

In my free time (when I have it), I love walking and hiking and snowshoeing the mountains and cemeteries of Vermont and New Hampshire. I love nature, particularly the stars and moon, cemeteries, mountains, and the ocean. I also spend my time: Camping. Yogaing. Swimming (at least 50 miles a year). Sewing costumes and fashions I wish I could wear on a daily basis (one of the greatest tragedies of my life is that Halloween is only once a year). Baking and cooking, or attempting it. Eating veggies and drinking wine. Getting tattoos and playing with my long hair. Going to Ren Faires and JASNA events. Playing D&D, going to book club and the movies. Taking pictures. Collecting weird things (like bits of glass). Trolling junk stores and yard sales. Traveling and being a tourist. Hanging out in museums and art galleries, collecting art. Absorbing history. Telling stories. Listening to music (I love new age, film soundtracks/scores, symphonic operatic goth rock, alternative rock, folk, pretty much everything). Talking and being a smarty pants. Going to and watching films and television, particularly of the science fiction/fantasy genre, anything folk tale/mythology related. Reading, reading, and reading. Generally being an obsessive fangirl. Writing, writing, writing, mostly "intellectual" analysis (or "meta") of my fandoms, but also junk about life, specifically my own life, and once in a great while, unpublishable novels! But most of all, I love adventuring with my friends and family, my beloved brother Chi Chi, my sisters (Sisterhood of the Fae), and the love of my life, m'Lord Moser. I do love this life and my people in it. And I love journaling. I don't go anywhere without a pen. Or a book.

Needless to say, I am an obsessive compulsive fangirl, a nerd and a geek. Being a geek totally rules! Endless, stupid conversations/discussion and journal posts where I--with a Literature degree--analyze the crap out of everything. I, for some reason, think that being a licensed language arts teacher gives me a license to be very obnoxious about it. I can't help it! Character drama, symbolism, allegory, motifs, themes! These are the sugar and flavorings that make the candy for us blessed with literature degrees. And teachers, well, we just love to hear ourselves pontificate.

I have a pretty smart brain that can't spell but that sponges up tons of useless information. I have freaky dark brown eyes, and currently ten tattoos (of my emblems: star, moon, sun, and a yellow rose, Orion's constellation of seven stars (placed on my ankles, shoulders, and back), as well as Roger, my death-head-angel that represents my family). I have long hair, which I love to play with, though it's an insane curly mess. Over the past few years, I have lost 130 pounds, so I am obsessed with eating vegetables and healthily, and also obsessed with vintage and unique fashions. There is a radiant freedom and joy that comes with that much weight loss. And from being three decades old. I love being old!

The two fictional characters I most identify with are Amelie (from Amelie) and the Eleventh Doctor (from Doctor Who), being weird and out of place, seeing the world differently than others, but wanting to help others, particularly by teaching them the beauties of this universe.

So, that is what my journal is (and, semi-pathetically, what my life is): reality and school and real world adventures mixed with trips off into the land of geekery and then back into the world of literature, history, art, and education. My life in meta and the TARDIS.

"A neutral territory, somewhere between the real world and fairy-land, where the Actual and the Imaginary may meet, and each imbue itself with the nature of the other." --Hawthorne

"Some things have to be believed to be seen."

“Imagination and its empyreal reflection is the same as human life and its spiritual repetition.” –Keats

"No wonder the hills and groves were God's first temples, and the more they are cut down and hewn into cathedrals and churches, the farther off and dimmer seems the Lord himself." -John Muir

"The cure for anything is salt water--sweat, tears, or the sea." ~Isak Dinesen

"Kindness is the highest form of intelligence."--Wayne Teasdale

I love history, literature, and art. Here are my favorites!

My favorite books of all time are: The Harry Potter Series (particularly Prisoner of Azkaban), The Adventures of Huck Finn, Pride and Prejudice (and pretty much anything by Jane Austen), The Princess Bride, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, Howl's Moving Castle, Stardust, Neverwhere, The Ballad of the Sad Cafe, Stargirl, Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Hogfather, Brokeback Mountain, Bridget Jones' Diary, About a Boy, A Long Way Down, Fool, Sacre Bleu, Lamb, The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal, The Scarlet Letter, anything by Shakespeare, any folk/fairy tales and myths, When the Sun Rose, The Neverending Story, Matilda, The Road to Oz, The Secret Garden, The Mother Tongue, The Adventures of Jacky Faber, The Killer Angels, Sherman's March, Little Dorrit.

My favorite authors are: Jane Austen, Bill Shakespeare, Neil Gaiman, Christopher Moore, Terry Pratchett, Diana Wynne Jones, Carson McCullers, Charlie Dickens, Flannery O'Conner, Mark Twain, William Faulkner, Nathaniel Hawthorn, Herman Melville, Nick Hornby, Laurie Notaro, Sarah Vowell, and Bill Bryson.

My favorite time periods are: Renaissance and Medieval times, Regency period, Victorian age, ancient times, the American Civil War, the 1920s flapper era, and, most of all, the Gilded Age (late Victorian to Edwardian). I find the American Civil War and the Titanic mind-bendingly fascinating. I love fashions from all of these periods, but particularly fashions from Renaissance, Steampunk/Victorian/Edwardian, and early 1960s. All hail the almighty longcoat!

My favorite movies of all time are: The Star Wars series (particularly Revenge of the Sith), It's a Wonderful Life, The Princess Bride, The Kid, City Lights, Moulin Rouge, Howl's Moving Castle, Spirited Away, The Point, Newsies, Goonies, Labyrinth, Babe, Back to the Future, Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Carribean, The Tenth Kingdom, The Village, Edward Scissorhands, The Truman Show, The Royal Tennebaums, Whalerider, Pride and Prejudice (BBC), Babe, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Super Troopers. I adore Charlie Chaplin.

My favorite TV shows of all time are: Lost, Firefly, Doctor Who, Torchwood, True Blood, Robin Hood (BBC), Quantum Leap, Xena and Hercules, Charmed, Dead Zone, Merlin (BBC), Jekyll, Flash Forward, Jericho, MASH, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, ALF, Mystery Science Theater 3000, Arrested Development, Pushing Daisies, Black Books, Daily Show/Colbert Report.

This is what my room looks like. I am a visual overload chick. I love art. I hate blank spaces.

My favorite painters of all time are: Maxfield Parrish, Lord Frederick Leighton, John Waterhouse, Josephine Wall, Alphonse Mucha, Kinuko Y. Craft, Amy Brown, DaVinci, VanGogh, Hieronymous Bosch and the Bruegels.

My favorite musicmakers of all time are: DeVotchKa, Within Temptation, Stream of Passion, Andrew Bird, Arcade Fire, Black Keys, Muse, The Killers, Florence and the Machines, Hurts, Mumford and Sons, Delerium, Hans Zimmer, Harry Gregson-Williams, George Winston, James Horner. I love Modern Classical music (scores from films), alternative/indie rock, Symphonic Operatic Goth Rock, Folk, Techno-Rock.

My favorite song of all time is Rose by James Horner. If there was one song that I could take with me into death to remind me about what life was like, this would be the one. Granted, I've driven everyone I know batshit from that song.

“I have no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about. Truth is, I don't want to know. Some things are best left unsaid. I'd like to think they were singing about something so beautiful, it can't be expressed in words, and makes your heart ache because of it. I tell you, those voices soared higher and farther than anybody in a gray place dares to dream. It was like some beautiful bird flapped into our drab little cage and made those walls dissolve away, and for the briefest of moments, every last man in Shawshank felt free.”

"Finally, the text [Harry Potter books] often seems to me to actively encourage the reader... to not only sympathize with Draco but also to find him slightly erotically appealing, by the mere virtue of showing him getting physically hurt so very often. Oh, come on now! Don't look at me like that. You all know what I'm saying here. It's the old "Hurt-Comfort" phenomenon, is what this is, and we all know about it, even if we like to pretend that we don't. What "Hurt-Comfort" comes down to is the fact that women are just plain Bent... They like to see male characters suffer, so long as they do so with some degree of manly dignity, because it turns them on. Male vulnerability garners their sympathy, and it also kind of excites them. They like it. No one ever wants to 'fess up to this, but it's true. Just look at the characters most often fixated upon as drool-worthy by JKR's adult female readers, will you? Lupin. Sirius. Snape. We all know what's really going on there, don't we? Are we all grown-up enough to admit it? All three of those characters have erotic appeal primarily because they all suffer so much. Lupin's kindness wouldn't alone be sufficient to make him so sexy; it's all of that exhaustion and illness and emotional damage that really nets in the fans. Sirius without all those years spent in Azkaban wouldn't have nearly the following that he has. And Snape...well, it's all that angst that does it, right? It's why they think Harry's so sexy too, I'd warrant. It's because they're twisted little FEATHERBOA wearers [Foaming Enthusiasts of Ambush, Torture, and Hostility, Embracing Really Blood-thirsty Operations And Savagery], each and every one of them. And JKR must know this. She must. To get the girls crushing on you, you have to be hurt...yet still doing okay with it. But not too okay. Not really okay down deep inside. Just marginally okay. Okay for now. Okay, but tottering dangerously on the cusp on not really okay at all. Yeah, I think that JKR knows what she's doing with that one. I think she knew full well that all the girls were just going to swoon in guilt-ridden sadistic crush-mode the second that she smacked poor Harry with all of that Cruciatus in the graveyard, and I think that she knew exactly what she was doing when she started beating out her tune on that "Harry can't cry" drum, too. I think that she knew what she was doing when she gave us poor pallid haggard prematurely-grey Lupin, and I think that she knew what she was doing when she told us all about Sirius' haunted Azkaban eyes, and I even think it possible that she might have had some inkling of what she was up to when she kicked Snape's emotional legs out from under him for just a second there in "The Egg and the Eye."" -Potter critic

(so true. especially if they wear a long coat.)

"...but it's not Harry Potter for grown-ups, as so many of them said. Harry Potter is Harry Potter for grown-ups, you dweebs." --Stephen King

While fangirls are not generally recognized as a danger to the general populace, I fear that someday, this unutilized and unrecognized center of creative energies may result in a serious disaster of some sort. That's why I chose to channel my energies in less destructive and life-endangering ways, such as this poor little journal.

"It's a hard world for little things." --Night of the Hunter

“If you want to know what a man’s like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.”—Sirius Black

"An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind." "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." --M. Ganghi

"Violence... [as a way of achieving] justice is both impractical and immoral. It is impractical because it is a descending spiral ending in destruction for all. It is immoral because it seeks to humiliate the opponent rather than win his understanding; it seeks to annihilate rather than to convert. Violence is immoral because it thrives on hatred rather than love." --Martin Luther King Jr.

I am a passionate liberal, vegetarian/vegan, and pacifist. I especially am passionate about education (obviously). Without free and *equal* education, we cannot truly be a democracy. Nothing is crueler than subjecting your fellow man to ignorance. Also, I am passionate about animal rights. Nothing bothers me more than mistreating children or animals.

I am a Universal Unitarian (that is, I believe in all religions, yet know I still got it wrong; my religion is a process), an idealist, a health nut, a geek, a nerd, a klutz, a neat freak, a perfectionist, an artist, a photographer, a historian, a visual-overload, an introvert, a naturalist, an intellectual idiot, a reader, a writer, a teacher, a student, an Italian, a complete and total fan girl, a Romantic, a pacifist, an optimist, a realist, a socialist, a lover, a poet, a goth, a hippie, a vegetarian, a constructivist, a girl scout, a Castleton snob, a true-blue Vermonter, a Capricorn, a true Ravenclaw (with a Hufflepuff heart), a Jedi, a cinephile, and a bibliophile.

"The religious myth is one of man's greatest and most significant achievements, giving him the security and inner strength not to be crushed by the monstrousness of the universe. Considered from the standpoint of realism, the symbol is not of course an external truth, but it is psychologically true, for it was and is the bridge to all that is best in humanity."--Jung

“The reader does not despise real woods because he has read of enchanted woods: the reading makes all real woods a little enchanted.”--C.S. Lewis

"Education doesn't make you happy, and nor does freedom. We don't become happy just because we're free. We don't become happy just because we're educated. But because education may be the means by which we realize we are happy. It opens our eyes, our ears, tells us where delights are lurking, convinces us there is only one freedom of any importance whatsoever. That of the mind." --Iris

“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” ~John Lennon

"I write for the same reason I breathe--because if I didn't, I would die." --Isaac Asimov

"We write to taste life twice." --Anais Nin

A precious, mouldering pleasure ’t is
To meet an antique book,
In just the dress his century wore;
A privilege, I think,

His venerable hand to take,
And warming in our own,
A passage back, or two, to make
o times when he was young.

His quaint opinions to inspect,
His knowledge to unfold
On what concerns our mutual mind,
The literature of old;

What interested scholars most,
What competitions ran
When Plato was a certainty,
And Sophocles a man;

When Sappho was a living girl,
And Beatrice wore
The gown that Dante deified.
Facts, centuries before,

He traverses familiar,
As one should come to town
And tell you all your dreams were true:
He lived where dreams were born.

His presence is enchantment,
You beg him not to go;
Old volumes shake their vellum heads
And tantalize, just so.
---Emily Dickinson

There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.

This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul!
--Emily Dickinson

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there."
--William Carlos Williams (put that on my gravestone, thanks)

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." --Groucho Marx

"The brain, it seems, does not make much of a distinction between reading about an experience and encountering it in real life."--article on the neuroscience of reading

"We read to know we're not alone." --Shadowlands

"Art should comfort the disturbed, and disturb the comfortable." - Banksy

"Sometimes fiction is a way of coping with the poison of the world in a way that lets us survive it." ~Neil Gaiman

"All good books have one thing in common: they are truer than if they had really happened, and after you've read one of them, you will feel that all that happened, happened to you and that it belongs to you forever. The happiness and unhappiness, good and evil, ecstasy and sorrow, the food, the wine, beds, people, and the weather. If you can give that to readers, you're a writer."--Hemmingway

"We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, and engineering-- these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love-- these are what we stay alive for." Dead Poet's Society.

"Perfection is not lovable… If you're going to live in the world, you live with imperfections. And what is lovable about a person is precisely that cute little twist of the nose that doesn't belong to the Greek tradition. What is lovable is the fault; what is lovable is the humanity." --Joseph Campbell

"The beloved can also be of any description. The most outlandish person can be the stimulus for love... and the lover may see this as clearly as anyone else--but that does not affect the evolution of his love one whit. A most mediocre person can be the object of a love which is wild, extravagant, and beautiful as the poison lilies of the swamp. A good man may be the stimulus for a love both violent and debased, or a jabbering madman may bring about in the soul of someone a tender and simple idyll. Therefore, the value and quality of any love is determined solely by the lover himself. It is for this reason that most of us would rather love than be loved...in a deep and secret way, the state of being loved is intolerable to many. The beloved fears and hates the lover, and with the best of reasons. For the lover is forever trying to strip bare his beloved. The lover craves any possible relation with the beloved, even if this experience can cause him only pain." --Carson McCullers in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe

"Everybody has a secret world inside of them. All of the people of the world, I mean everybody. No matter how dull and boring they are on the outside, inside them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds. Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands maybe." --Neil Gaiman

Rating position


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