Personal Heroes

"I'm gonna good a great big tree hear, I like big trees, but you can out it there if you want, or there, it's your painting. Hm, let's see, I think the light is coming from here, so we're just going to add a few shadows here, and here, just carefully put a few shadows on, not too much."

Do I even need to explain this one? Nothing on TV is more soothing than Bob Ross (who, unfortunately, died in 1995), not even curling tournaments.

I was amazed, a few days ago, to find the book "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang", a collection of essays and reviews by Pauline Kael, just standing there in a small bookcase known grandly as the "college library". I'd been looking for it forever! And here it was, and the prize was even still on the inside cover: 20 eurocents.

They really are amazing essays. She destroys Blow-Up, in a way that doesn't make me want to agree with her right away, but that makes me want to watch the movie again and see if she has a point. She was the critic who "discovered" Bonnie and Clyde, at least, the one who first saw why it was great, and her essay on it is so full of details, so nuanced, and thoroughly fascinating to read.

Finally, Ricky Gervais. Some might know him from series such as "the Office" (the original, British version) and "Extras", but I have to admit I never caught more than a couple of episodes of both. Now, however, he has a podcast, and as you all know I love those. So, in that train this last Sunday, I listened to the first two episodes...And people must have thought I was crazy, laughing out loud, doubling over, from what was coming from my headphones. Totally weird, without structure or goal (though there is a lot about monkeys), but somehow incredibly funny.


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