The big news is that twelve year old is back in school, taking the city bus (a special route for her school that has generated a few lawsuits) to school, except on the days where it doesn't show up. Yeah, it's not that reliable. She's still not confident enough to pull the rope to request a stop on the way home, maybe with time. Fortunately there are enough kids in the neighborhood who get off when they do. Porsche_girl has a school bus that is very reliable. It shows up about 8 minutes before twelve year old's, at which point we walk towards newspaper_girl's stop, and sometimes meet in the middle. It's a rough transition, she complains she doesn't have time to get to her locker, she has to carry too many books, sometimes she can't get into lunch. She's coming along though.
It seems common, I've talked to other parents, the charter school spoiled us all, middle school is rougher.
On to movie reviews, we started many movies over the last few weeks, and even finished a few.
Breaking and Entering is about some British architects that prefer Macs who have a studio is a crime-ridden part of London, and what happens when some Serbian sorts break in and steal them, repeatedly. The bigger crime is that Juliette Binoche is not in every scene. Her Serbian son is a parkeur enthusiast (some soft of French jumping around buildings and steps thing), and the protagonist's daughter is some sort of autistic gymnast. Meh.
Next up were a few unfinished movies. Faces is supposed to be the first independent film. We watched some of it, I want whatever drug they were on in the beginning, they're supposed to be drunk, but it was like super energetic acid. The cinemotagraphy was interesting, but we just couldn't get into it.
The next aborted movie was In the Bedroom where a college kid hooks up with a MILF with a jealous ex-husband. It didn't capture our attention enough to finish it.
We did finish Wild Hogs, which was funny, and suprisingly family appropriate. It was rated a Pg-13, but I don't recall why it couldn't have been a PG. It's a lightweight buddy film about four middle aged men who form a Harley Rider's club and go on a road trip, with a short cameo from Peter Fonda.
The penultimate movie to review was Sherrybaby, for when Black Snake Moan is to light and happy. If you ever wondered what Maggie Gyllenhaal's breasts looked like, naked and braless, this is the movie for you. In short, Maggie plays someone released from prison and hoping to reconnect with her five year old girl. One bright spot was a Native American leader of her twelve step program was not a noble savage, but a flawed person who was more good than bad. I found it bleak and depressing, Mrs. Ha liked it.
The final movie is Paris, je T'aime, 18 short films on Paris and love. I enjoyed the mimes.
In book news, I've been stalking Parker's Devices and Desires for a while, the main character is a very gifted amoral engineer with a superb political sense. Vaatzes, the protagonist is a shop foreman for the only technological society (about Roman technology maybe), the Mezentines in the world, who maintains their superiority via mercantilism, and are almost totally deadset against innovation, an object made 200 years ago is the same as one made today, they both meet specifications. Vaatzes makes something with improvements, is caught, sentenced to death, and learns his wife and daughter will also suffer somewhat. He can handle death, but when his family is threatened, he decides to get even.
It's refreshing to read a fantasy novel without magic, and where the protagonist only uses his wits. It is a little dry, and very political, and Vaatzes is way too lucky with his machinations. The timing is odd, it almost appears that the three main societies are each only 20 miles apart, with the way letters post from one to another within a day. I'm also not sure about the idea that there was no technological leakage, given how quickly Vaatzes can teach a primitive society to make ballista/scorpios (the wonder weapon of the Mezentine army).
In rereading the first book (it's a trilogy) it's even dryer still. It reminds me of Ender of Ender's Game being transported into the Wheel of Time, without magic. I'll still hunt down books two and three.
No big weekend plans, swimming restarts, maybe sleeping in and homework. Maybe I'll fix my bike headlight and get it ready for inspection, it's overdue.
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