The 10th Muse: Dick Wolf

I love Law and Order. I love Law and order: Special Victims Unit too. ( I do not like Law and Order: Criminal Intent. AS much as I love Vincent Donofrio as a souped up, more attractive and importantly realistic Columbo type character, that show just lacks something like, uh, drama and suspense for me. I digress.) Well courtesy of metafilter ( those guys are the freakin' best- Side note-does anyone know how I might be able to change my blog to movable type so that I can use the trackback on metafilter? Please?) I present to you Law and Order: Artistic Intent.

Some of the art is fairly crappy ( "Briscoeteque" and "Lennie Grabs a Dog" are both fairly lame), but there is the very fun Law and Order coloring book. Brandon Bird, the organizer and a contributor, also organized a show based on Edward Norton. Again much of the art is lame or just plain unpenetrable (see "Timid Angel" or "Fenestrated Norton") but some of the work, in particular the not too creatively named "Many faces of Ed Norton", is interesting. The many faces piece does have relevance to my shattered identity post. Indeed, being an actor to some degree means that having a shattered ego is almost a job requirement. Perhaps the increase in my fracture self has to do with my abadonment of acting and fiction writing. Perhaps these pursuits were in fact theraputic outlets for the alternative selves to find some form of expression in a healthy way.

Although art has often times been inspired by popular forms of expression ( think of all those Moulin Rouge paintings), I'm not sure about these works being "real" art. Too many of them seem like they are one step below Elvis on velvet. There doesn't seem to be any thought or deeper meaning to them with a few exceptions. ( "Lennie Briscoe and the Immaterial Witness" is one of the few that at least made me sit and think-think about what I leave you to judge.) So I guess I'm posting just because I'm interested in if fan art can BECOME art in general or if it is simply doomed to be forgotten.

One of the things I taught my kids two years ago, when I had to teach Dante's Inferno, is that making references to contemporary figures pretty much dates your work. For example, most of my kids don't get the references in the book American Psycho. They have never heard of Genesis or Huey Lewis and the News. Ellis, although he wrote a book that has been radical misinterpreted ( much like Natural Born Killers) to simply be in praise of violence, was trying to suggest that in a culture that is so focused on material wealth, human life becomes a cheap commodity. Essentially he was, to some degress, arguing that capitalism breeds murderers, particularly yuppie murderers. The existence of the "Billionaire Boys Club" and the variety of men who were dubbed "yuppie rapists" or "yuppie murderers" ( of which, I believe the Unicorn killer Ira Einhorn might be considered) might be considered as evidence.

In the end, it just a fun link that I'm trying to justify by yabbering on about universality and "dated" contemporary references.

More Evidence Against Darwinian Mate Selection Theory

Yes, we here at bunniblog are scientifically minded and so I offer up to my latest evidence against Darwinian theory. We've all heard about the latest Bridezilla incident in which an 18 year old girl went ballistic at her own wedding reception and had to be arrested. Well, here is the follow up on that story. (The link even has footage of her bridal day hijinx as well as video feed from her day in court.)

Not only did her her husband, a 21 year old Marine reservist stay married to the little twit, but he stood by her during her day at court.

The bride, after destroying a great deal of glassware at the wedding reception, still went through with their honeymoon at Dollywood. What the hell is dollywood, you may ask. I myself didn't have a clue, but thankfully NBC does their research. "Dollywood is country music star Dolly Parton's amusement park in Tennessee. But Adrienne Samen ( Bridezilla) said they were forced to cut short the vacation after being hounded by reporters."

They should be so lucky that it wasn't the cops hounding them considering that she repeatedly tried to attack officers who were merely trying to restrain the rampaging bride.

But what disturbs me the most, aside from the fact that this totally confims my "I'm not crazy enough for a man to love me" theory, is that the judge only sentenced her to a 90 dollar fine and merely SUGGESTED she get anger management counseling. Oh c'mon, I think after such a ridiculous outburst it should be required. On top of that, I think she should have to do community service, not that I particularly like the idea of a soon to be raging homicidal maniac working at the local soup kitchen, but really. You're taking up a perfectly good man AND getting just a slap on the wrist. Some people have all the luck.

It's gettin' hot in here

I have been after taking the Inferno Test I was banished to the sixth level of Hell, which puts me just 3 away from the devil himself and Judas Iscariot. I didn't think I was that bad. Really.

The Dante's Inferno Test has banished you to the Sixth Level of Hell - The City of Dis!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:
Purgatory (Repenting Believers)Very Low
Level 1 - Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers)Low
Level 2 (Lustful)Very High
Level 3 (Gluttonous)High
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious)Very Low
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy)High
Level 6 - The City of Dis (Heretics)Very High
Level 7 (Violent)High
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers)Moderate
Level 9 - Cocytus (Treacherous)High

Take the Dante Inferno Hell Test

It's so much better when you don't talk

Oh yeah, this one goes out to the director of the Matrix-you can almost hear him off screen telling Keanu "You know it's so much more POWERFUL when you don't say no, close your mouth, yes that's it...and give me that David Duchovny blank expression....and CUT!"

From last night's date I got this email today:

I had the best time with you, this evening. You're beautiful and intellegent and special. And I like you. I hope we get together again, soon.

Ok it's on the short side, but really, he got in, he said what he needed to, and he didn't waste my time. Unfortunately this was the subject line of the email: hi, shorty.....


In keeping with the theme I will include today's IQOTD

"If you'll just shut up for a minute, I'll come." Molly Ringwold in the Robert Downey Jr vehicle the Pick-Up Artist

Things that give me hope

Seeing to women playing scrabble by candle light with the concentration of professional chess players at the St. Bart's Cafe while I listen to mellow jazz, drink sangria, and eat lousiana shrimp, all of which was paid for by my date (from, under a starry sky with perfect weather

it's the end of summer-what are some of the little things ( or maybe not so little things) that give you hope?


"You don't use G-d to schill for your film" William Friedkin talking about the original ad campaign for The Exorcist

Jin King of the Metaphors

Bad Bunni: I don't see any quality shout out-oh and refreshy

Jin: \ok you will get qualityshoutout - but like the tiger approaching the unaware dear, you will not see it coming

Jin: unless of courseit steps on a twig and you bolt but thats not likely- quality shout out is as stealthy as marion barry on crack, unseen and not guilty

Bunni: you have the best metaphors

Jin: i try


Bishop: Sorry I haven't been around lately. I had sex with my ex.

Bunni: I thought the whole reason you two broke up is she wouldn't sleep with you.

Bishop: Well, we saw each other, and it just happened. Now I'm considering taking her back...She's really fucked up.

Bunni: Let me get this straight. You went out with this crazy girl who wouldn't give you sex so she broke up with you. And now you are considering taking her back just because she slept with you?

Bishop: Yep.

Bunni:If it were me, I'd stay broken up. At least that way you'll get sex.

Bishop: I'm moving to Florida next year.

Bunni: If you're just going to move why bother getting involved at all?

Bishop: There's a lot of time between now and next year.

You know I used to believe in Darwinist theory that whole selecting the mate with the best genes for survival. Please note I used the past tense in that sentence. Humn beings seem to use the opposite-they look for the least appropriate mate and then pursue them unto death.

The Combined Wisdom of Bunni and Jin

Jin: Well you know what maybe like alot of people, he has realised that sex not just complicates things but it ruins things too.

Bad Bunni: Ah, but then he needs to realize important point number two: not having sex can complicate and ruin things too.


Courtesy of Possession by A.S. Byatt

"And one day we will write otherwise...but you must know now, that it turned out as it must turn out, must you not? Such is the power of necessity in tales" (172).

Bunni on the fine art of online dating profile writing

Actually I was sent a really good profile today on, but as it has identifying information interwined throughout (there's no way I could edit it out) I can't post it here. But Mo threw down the gauntlet to challenge me what kind of profile I would respond to. Generally the ones that make me laugh or surprise me are the way to go. For example the guy who sent me the message I can't post, it was actually a riddle and the solution provided his email address. I know it sounds hokey, but it was actually very well done ( it took me about ten minutes of sitting and thinking and reading and rereading). It fun and different. I liked that a bit.

One of the keys to profile writing is knowing when to shut up. A lot of these guys go on and on and on and on. I mean, if I wanted to sit and read War and Peace I'd go and read it. Particularly guys who just want sex. I mean, if you just want booty-tell me up front so that I can make a decision and move on. I've jokingly said that basically guys who just want sex should simply post "Have cock, will travel."

I've long been a believer that any woman can get sex, sure she might have to settle for something outside of her own species, but really it's possible. There's an old joke: the difference between men and women is that a man wonders if he's going to have sex at the end of the date, the woman already knows. But getting back to my point. Because the market for male meat is flooded, I would be hard pressed to come up with something that would really peak my interest in terms of a just for sex response. Add to that my doubt of most claims of sexual prowess. I immediately suspect anyone who claims they can "go all night" or that satisfaction is garanteed.

I remember, and I think I wrote about this once, a guy offered me sex in exchange for english classes. My joking response was "I went to grad school, what the hell is your degree in?" He couldn't even offer up some testimonials (I'm assuming asking his wife was out of bounds). Generally, generally the men who are fabulous in bed don't have to advertise for sex. They don't even have to brag. All the men I've been with who have been fabulous, not a "I am the McDonald's of the dating world:Over a million satisfied customers", not even a "You know why my bed has guard rails?" Most of these guys understand that good merchandise sells itself. Why do you think I put up with John Yule showing up on my doorstep? Well, he has a function, and he knows it. I don't trust him for serious intellectual debate or emotional support, but damn the boy has a talent and he understand that. But when I first met him, did he just say "Hey baby I can make you gush like Niagra Falls?" Yuck. No way. He understood the subtle communication of body language. And so did I.

To be honest about myself however, and humble myself a bit, Mo, the truth is looking at the men I date, the profile I should respond to would be the following:

Hi, I'm a very attractive Arayan man who is a brilliant writer/artist, but who is complete incapable of any kind of emotional involvement. Oh sure I could tell you that I have another girlfriend or I just came off of a bad breakup, but the truth is I have the emotional depth of a teaspoon. I can tell you all sorts of complimentary things to make you think that I seriously care about you and call every day for week and then suddenly I'll vanish for a month. Just when you're sure I have totally forgotten you, I'll show up on your doorstep drunk and depressed. I won't even bother to break up with you in the end, but leave you waiting for me endlessly. You will obsess about what you did wrong to make me leave for months, when the truth was I accidentally deleted your phone number from my cell and lacked the energy to look it up on the white pages. I will leave you worse than how I found you, not that I will even think about you when you are gone.

If this sounds like the relationship for you, contact me as

God, Grammar, And Government

I log on to AOl today, and there is that evil news flasher thingy and what do I see "Bible Believers Feel Forsaken: Is society abandoning G-d?" Well of course it's over this, uh guys let's PRETEND that we still up hold that seperation between church and state thing ruling in the courts. Let me just say this for the record. First off soceity and government ARE TWO SEPERATE THINGS, and I'm not talking in a seperate but equal type of sense, I'm taking like apples and oranges. Do they interesect? Yes. Do they overlap? Surely, but apples and oranges are both fruit, it doesn't mean they are the same thing.

The seperation of church and state is one of the only reasons I stay in this country. If that goes, I'm moving to Scotland. I mean, hot men in kilts vs a theocracy. Sign me up for bagpipe classes.

Basically if a majority of people woke up tomorrow and said "You know, I don't think G-d exists." That is a case of soceity abadoning G-d. If the government says "You know, it's not appropriate to have the rule of one single religion posted in government buildings. Especially since our legislation and laws often differ greatly from that of these rules ( capital punishment anyone?)." That's government setting up appropriate boundaries. The government isn't forbiding any judge or other government worker from believing in G-d and affirming those beliefs in private or putting the ten commandments on their own front lawn if they so desire, it just doesn't allow that government buildings are the appropriate forum for such postings.

I would say G-d bless them for it, but uh somehow that doesn't seem quite appropriate.

Uh, six to one half a dozen to the other

I got another one of those "just casual" men from Oh, let me just show you:

Just looking to have fun with no games and no strings. All the nice guys are not taken, they are just tired of the games like me!

So all of nice guys aren't taken, some of them just want sex and cab fare. Well, I know I'll rest better at night knowing that.

For future reference, emotionally unavailable means emotionally unavailable. I don't care why. I don't care if it's because you are already committed to someone else, you're scarred by your previous committment to someone else, or secretly you are a potted plant.

No games? No strings? No problem. No contact.

A disturbing trend

I realize as an english teacher I have my own issues. Recently I have noticed my students will randomly capitalize a word in a sentence. For example, a student will submit a paper with a sentence like this, "A student currently enrolled at New York University may choose to major in business, psychology, or Acting." And no it's not just a typo because these random capitalization go on through out the paper. Nor can my students explain why they chose this or that word to be capitalized. To illustrate this trend I offer you a profile text I was sent this morning:

Hi to all you wonderful ladies, I'm looking To Fine someone Like Me Who Is Honest, Caring, Romantic, Affectionate, Love To have fun, Try New Things and Has a Little Wild Side To Her, I like Quite Nights in as well as Nights on The Town Dancing Until when Ever. I like Hiking, Love The Beach, sporting and concerte events, the movies, music and more so If Your intrested In an Honest No head game Person, well you Found Him, take care and hope to hear from You!!!

maybe you don't find that one annoying or random enough-how about this one then?

HI, I'm fRench canadian living and wOrkin I like outdooRs actIvities, coOking, playing guitar,... Honest, faithFul, adventurous, bored to be single. CAn u 20be the one? who know? drop Me a line. SNee ya! P.s. I PLAY ACOUSTIC GUITAR AND USE TO WRITE MY OWN. ROMANTIC GUY AND SWEET LIKE A DOVE.

And you know that sad part? That last one lists his profession as a SCIENTIST. Well at least if there is a nuclear holocaust I'll know who to blame.

The Wisdom of Bunni

I thought I would list here some of the rules I live by, considering how well I'm doing in this life, you might want to read them and then do the opposite.

Never read a german author when you are depressed, you will kill yourself. I'm not kidding. If you're boyfriend just broke up with you, put down Steppenwolf and back away slowly. You can always finish it when you feel better.

Never make major decisions when you're depressed. I think "It seemed like a good idea at the time" should be put on my tombstone. I would like to stress that particularly DATING decisions ie should I go out with this guy? should be taken under serious advisement when you are depressed.

If a man says he's emotionally unavailable, take him at his word and walk away. Actually, it should go for women too. Lots of people think "I'll change them" and then waste half their lives, when there are single folk out here ( hint hint) who ARE ready and waiting for the rest of you to stop bashing your head against a wall. ( I'm so sick of being single, I almost miss bashing my head against the wall. Almost.)

Never let fear alone stop you from doing something you want to do.

Any rules ya'all live by?

Even more evidence of why the US needs better english teachers

Courtesy of the Smoking Gun's Document of the Day

TSG's Sunday featured document was actually a collection of documents written to the judge of the Kobe Bryant case. The first was written by a woman who works at a hotel. She insisted that no one other than a bell hop or invited room service staff had any reason to be in Bryant's room. The alledged rape victim, in her opinion, was in Bryant's room only because "She...felt a sexually desire to have sex with him." Later she states she is not an educated college person. Well, I kind of hoped not, but I wouldn't have been surprised. For the most part very few of the college persons I encounter ARE educated. And that isn't snark, that's a statement of fact. I am willing to bet I could show that sentence to my students and they wouldn't even flinch. They would wonder why I was writing it on the board. Honestly a person shouldn't have to go to college to be able to write a coherent sentence. I firmly believe that everyone who makes it to 10th grade should be able to write a decent sentence. I'm not asking for Shakespearean prose here people, just A DECENT SENTENCE.


Dystopia continued

To revisit the Dystopia post, one of the things that I didn't discuss there is the shifting from getting alledgedly disturbed teens help to incarcerating them. In the Oklahoma case, if the principle feared that the student was so unhinged as to stage an armed attack on his own school WHY DIDN'T HE CALL A LICENSED PSYCHOLOGIST OR PSYCHIATRIST? Lots of schools have a psychologist on staff. Why not send him over there first and assess the threat? Is sending the kid to jail really going to help him or heal him if he has intense emotional disorders?

The day before the Oklahoma post, mefi had a similar posting about two 14 year old kids in Wisconsin being arrested for having sex. Part of the justification of the arrest was "Not to punish the children, [Kornblum] said, but to help them through various court-ordered services." Well, crickey, it seems like maybe there should be a way to get kids that "come from troubled backgrounds and struggle with...attention deficit disorder and parental abandonment" help without throwing them in jail. It would kind of help to get them aid BEFORE they do something illegal. It would certainly be cheaper, that is if finance is really what you are concerned about. Of course, if these kids were really enterprising, they would have gone to North Carolina where the age of consent IS 14. ( Yet another example of how a little bit of effort could have resulted in an immense improvement in quality of life.) My specific comments about that particular mefi post are available here.

Another aspect of the Oklahoma case that disturbed me that I wanted to address is the confusion of fiction with reality. I began to talk about how a story about an armed take over of a school was taken to mean that this was the secret desire of the author. There is not always, or I think, even normally a one to one ratio with narrator's and author's opinions. Am I to believe that because the narrator of the Tin Drum tells me that he is insane and believes his drum can tell stories that Gunter Grasse, the author, believes the same thing?

When I was in grad school, GRAD SCHOOL, with other educated writers, if a student handed in a story in first person narrative, the other writers always assumed it was autobiographical. This was particularly annoying to me, as I prefer first person narrative. What was amazing was that students tooks this attitude towards stories, even when I made the narrator male. It kind of became a game, how much could I change the narrator and still have people think it was me? The answer was it didn't matter what I did to the narrator, my classmates ALWAYS believed it was me. And if this what educated writers think, I guess I can't expect more sophistication from the politicians and legislators of Oklahoma.

Still there is a different between writing an essay and writing a story, a distinction that I made before, but I would like to reassert. Yes sometimes
narrators or other characters are voice pieces for the author, but sometimes they are not. There should not be an assumption of autobiography. And this is why American needs to give their children a better literary education and I should be paid better.


The Inspirational Quote of the Day-from now on to be referred to as IQUOTD

In response to Jin's, why should we care about Greek mythology I offer the following quote from A.S. Byatt's Possession

"...those past voices and lives whose resuscitation in our own lives as warnings, as exmaples, as the life of the past persisting in us, is the business of every thinking man and woman" (116).

Double Your Pleasure

I want to take a moment and talk about the duality of characters in literature. This was inspired by my current reading Possession by A.S.Byatt. Generally I am not a fan, but I am working on a old story that involves a alledged case of possession and I was just curious to see what girlfriend did in her novel. This moment in particular interested me:

"There were now two Vals. One sat silently at home in old jeans...This one had lustreless brown hair, very straight...the other who wore a tight black skirt and a black jacket with padded shoulders over a pink silk shirt and was carefully made up with pink and brown eyeshadow...Her hair rolled into a passable pageboy and sometimes tied back with a black ribbon. She stopped short of perfume" (18).

I have shortened this lengthy description of the two Vals simply to make life easier for you, my dear readers. This duality interested me because unlike the most notable literary cases of the a divided persona ( Jekyll and Hyde) here the focus isn't the "good" self and the "bad" self, but rather the business self and the personal self or public vs private.

Fitting in with the duality theme is the movie Lost Highway which was on, for reasons I can't even begin to imagine, the Sci-fi channel on saturday. Here we have not just one character split into two halves, but two. Fred ( played by Bill Pullman) is married to Renee ( played by a brunette Patricia Arquette). Fred is discovered with the dead mutilated body of Renee. Fred himself doesn't know if he murdered his wife. In prison, one night, Fred undergoes a transformation and becomes Pete ( played by Balthazar Getty). Pete then meets Alice (played by a Blonde Patricia Arquette). Pete and Alice become lovers. At Alice's urging, Pete robs and inadvertently kills a character named Andy ( Andy, incidentally is also a close friend of Fred's-Andy also knew Renee). The two flee into the desert where Alice vanishes and Pete transforms back into Fred. Fred is then told by a mysterious man ( played by Robert Blake) who appears throughout the film, that there is no Alice, the girl's name is Renee.

If the film sounds confusing, that's because it is. I am big fan of Lynch not in the least because I like his visual style. Generally in the world of Lynchian drama, psychological realities are made physically manifest. In this case, Fred kills his wife, suspecting that she has a secret life and indeed a secret lover. He can not accept that he murdered his wife, and he flees into an alternate identity, Pete, a younger sweeter, "good" self. Unfortunately he can not fully escape, and Renee appears as Alice, another "good" self( like with the smurfs, the blonde hair is a tip off that this "version" is good, while the brunette is evil). But the fantasy can not hold out. And reality keeps trickling in.

Tha Alice and Renee are the same woman is made clear several ways. Both Alice and Renee are pictured wearing the same ensembles. Conversations are also repeated. Fred asks Renee how she met Andy and she responds "I met him at a place called Mokes. He told me about a job." Fred asks her what job, but she waves him saying "I don't remember." Later Pete asks Alice how she met Andy and she says "I met him at a place called Mokes. He told me about a job." Pete responds "Doing pornos?" "No" she replies, "Just a job." She then elaborates on what happened. That Alice and Renee both encountered the same character at the same location for the same reason strongly suggests that they are indeed one and the same girl. Certainly that Arquette plays both characters seems to suggest that Alice is Renee, disguised only by some peroxide.

Fred and Pete, despite being played by different actors, are also the same character, or more accurately Pete is a construct of Fred. He is younger, and also as opposed to Renee and Fred's relationship, he is the object of desire for many women. Alice pursues Pete, not the other way around, which makes Pete feel, initially, as if he is in control of the relationship. Fred feels that Renee is out of his control and so this fantasy also satisfies Fred's desire to re-assert his power over his wife. ( His murder of her can also be viewed as an assertion, if only physically, of his power over his wife.) There is the same repetition of dialogue here as with Alice/Renee. Here the repetition of dialogue occurs with the Mystery Man. MM walks up to Fred at a party and says "We've met before, haven't we?" When Fred asks where, MM replies "At your house. In fact I'm there now." MM hands Fred a phone and instructs him to call his own house. Fred obeys and the phone is answered by MM. This exact conversation is mirror later with Pete. Finally both Pete and Fred experience the same physical ailments-bloody noses, head aches, black outs, and blurring of vision ( which suggest that Fred may be suffering from a brain tumor).

At the end of the movie, it becomes clear that Fred is divided not into two selves but rather three. The mysterious and dark MM is the third self. This explains MMs sudden disappearances and reappearances, but it also explains the ominious "We've met before" statement. They've met before because MM IS a part of Fred. MM also hands Fred the knife to kill Mr. Eddy. When the knife wound fails to kill him, MM picks up a gun and shoots Mr Eddy in the head, indicating that this third self is the "bad" self. Fred can't accept that he is a murderer, even though he can accept having murderous intent. MM then is called in to successful perform the murder. He appears only as long as he needed to kill Mr Eddy and then he vanishes again. ( For the entire typed screenplay of Lost Highway-go here)

Duality has long been of interest to me and particular various forms of duality. There are the half man-half beast hybrids from greek and roman mythology-the centaurs, the satyrs, and the silenii-which can be seen as representing the dual nature of man: bestial and intellectual. Machiavelli, in the Prince, wrote that it was not an accident that a centaur educated a paragon of princes. Machiavelli felt such a myth illustrated that the prince must have both drives in balance.

Gemini, the atrological sign, is represented not by twins in the Major Arcana of the Tarot, but by the Lovers card. The Lovers, although many take it as a sign of romance, can be interpreted to mean a fully integrated self-both natures, male and female, living in harmony and in balance. The division here is not good and bad or public and private, but rather gender oriented.

For me the duality manifests itself in many ways. Of course, there is the public and private self, and the good and bad self, but the division I feel most accutely is the division between the disabled and the capable self-or the front vs the reality. This maybe why I am so intrigued by Lost Highway because here is a case where a character tries to create a "front" but he ultimately experiences the same anguish as his "real" counterpart. For me, as time goes on, the division isn't fused but becomes more accute. I feel more seperated. The good girl and the bad girl, which used to be closer to a whole, have now become very clearly differentiated. The most clear outward manifestation of the difference, for me, is generally through the hair. If my hair is pulled up or back, then I am the good, public self. When my hair is completely down, I am either the bad self or in private. This isn't a conscious choice, it's just something I have noticed. And this isn't too say if I shift between one or the other that I take time out to redo my hair.

The question remains, however, when dealing with such division which is the true self? In films, the "true self" is clear. For example, in Lost Highway, that Fred is the "true self" is made clear, but in reality, this disinction is much harder to make. When the self becomes splintered, how do you pick which is the real you?

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