Stereotypes

There was a period in my life when I tried to not fall into any stereotypes. I wanted to seem different and cool, I guess. I didn’t want to be “like other girls,” I didn’t want to get the response “that’s what everyone thinks,” or “that’s what everyone likes.” I wanted to love different movies, different music, and different fashion choices.

Much of it came from a guy I was trying to impress early in college. He’d say that most girls were the same and he wanted one that wasn’t like the rest. He didn’t want one who wore boots because all girls wore boots and we all dressed the same apparently. He didn’t want the stereotypical girl who liked Starbucks and shopping. He didn’t want one who was too girly, but she still had to act like a girl in order to grab his attention. It was ridiculous how  I continuously tried to pretend I hated things that I liked just so he’d view me as worthy.

At the end of the day, I get it. He had a specific person set in his mind and he was looking for someone either exactly like her or not like her in the least bit. I didn’t fit into either category and after an embarrassing amount of time, I began to realize that. Once I did, I couldn’t understand why I was depriving myself of the little things I enjoyed all so I could “not be like other girls.” I had that type of mindset for so long that thinking back to those days makes me incredibly disappointed with my younger self. I doubt we’d get along all that well.

It also took me until recently to finally break away from the thought and embrace myself. Yes, I am a typical girl. Yes, I like Starbucks, it tastes good to me. I like shopping, I think it’s fun to look at clothes and try them on. I like boots, in fact I love them. I just received a pair today that I ordered online. Pink is my favorite color. My nails currently have glitter on them. As overrated as he is, Batman is still my favorite superhero and has been since I was a kid watching re-runs of the Adam West series. He’ll probably always be my favorite because I find him cool and it’s as simple as that. The truth is, I’m not that different from a lot of people. I fall into stereotypes, but I’m also a lot more than that.

I don’t see a point in depriving myself of the things I enjoy so I can come off as unique or cool in someone’s eyes. I like what I like and I always will. Maybe the reason some things are universally liked is because they’re something interesting that we can all share in. Doesn’t that sound better than competing over who has a more unique taste and attributing that uniqueness to superiority?

If you love a hobby or a film or a fashion choice or anything else then love it. Don’t throw away pieces of yourself just so you can stand out because those little things should not be what defines your worth. Let your personality and the choices you make be the character traits that shine.

Let your acts speak louder than the brand of coffee you buy.

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And I Quote – Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

I love quotes which is one of the reasons I underline so much while reading. Originally I was going to list out a few of my favorites again from various novels, but that becomes almost impossible when one book has too many to choose from. Which means for the this post, I’m going to do my top 5 favorite quotes from Douglas Adams’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

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5. “Isn’t it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?”

4. “The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.”

3. “For a moment, nothing happened. Then, after a second or so, nothing continued to happen.”

2. “In the beginning the Universe was created.
This had made many people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.”

1. “He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.”

I love the way he writes and I wish I could replicate it better. Every sentence he makes sounds equally wise and ridiculous which makes it addictive to read. I like to refer to it as “clever silliness” and it’s something I wish I could find more of in books.

What are some of your favorite quotes from this book or any other?

Best Live Action Marvel Film?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to grow with films planned out for the next 10 years, it seems. The popularity is undeniable so of course the studio will continuing creating new stories until the trend finally slows down and dies out.

With that being said, which one is the best so far? Avengers? Guardians of the Galaxy? Captain America: The Winter Soldier? Possibly even this week’s Ant-Man?

Well, for me, it’s the X-Men series. I say series because it’s the entity of this universe that stands out to me, not a single movie (though I have my favorites). I barely remember seeing the first few when I was a kid back in 2000. My dad would be watching them on the TV and I’d catch bits and pieces without fully understanding what was going on. I only knew the characters from the 80’s cartoon and X-Men Evolution. It wasn’t until I was in college that I sat down and watched them all in full. After that I went out a bought the complete trilogy along with the first Wolverine movie. Obviously, I’d grown attached.

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I realize that the series has it’s flaws and that they aren’t works of art or even considered “good” to many. Still, they’re fun for me and at the end of the day, that’s all that really matters. Even though I’ve seen each of them several times, they never grow old. I love their universe, I love the characters, I love the atmosphere, the plots, the humor, even the incredibly cheesy moments. They’re incredibly re-watchable.

As a kid the X-Men were always my favorite superhero team. I liked that they were a group of outcasts attempting to fit into society while playing hero. I liked that they each had their own power that they were just born with. No radioactive spiders or aliens or anything like that. It was just a part of their gene pool and it wasn’t much of a secret. The city knew, really the whole world knew, that there were people being born everyday with incredible abilities.

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What grabbed  me was the reaction created from this plot. Some people in this universe immediately see them as a threat while others just find it interesting. Some with powers like Magneto view themselves as superior and the next step in evolution. Others feel self-confident because of their gift. Some view these people as demons and a mistake of God. Some even searched desperately for a cure like this was a disease.

One of my favorite scenes comes from X3 (yes, I realize people loathe this film with all their hearts, but bear with me). In the beginning we see  Angel as a child looking at himself in an expensive looking bathroom. The next thing we see is blood and clipped wings falling to the pristine floor. His dad steps in and finds him cutting off the budding wings from his back. Instead of comforting him or helping, all he says is “Oh god, not you” with unmistakable disgust. I got chills the first time seeing this played out and it’s moments like this that I can’t let go.

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I care for these characters. I like seeing them interact with each other, I like seeing them in action, and I like just seeing them. They’re all interesting to me. Some of my favorite actors are in these movies and they became my favorites from these movies. I always thought these films were well casted because the actors just seem to fit the character they’re playing. It feels natural on screen which is something that’s not often seen.

To me, the X-Men series is different than the other Marvel films. It has it’s own unique atmosphere with this toned down sense of humor, chilling moments, intriguing plot points, and still harnesses (whether intentional or not) that vintage cheesy superhero feeling.

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On a side note: I cannot wait until X-Men: Apocalypse. Nightcrawler? Angel? X-Men in the 80’s? Is it time yet?

 

Peter Pan in Hyde Park

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Unfortunately, the Mr. Darcy statue coming out of the water had been moved by the time my group arrived in London. Still, I got to have a nice walk around the are and find the Peter Pan statue.

What I loved most about finding this was the people around it. There wasn’t much of a crowd near it, but it drew in more people than the other statues around. It’s something that people of any age can get excited about. Peter Pan is a Disney movie from most of our childhood’s and it’s also an old fairytale still being read and told. It’s a story about adventure, imagination, and coming to terms with growing older, but realizing that it’s not such a bad thing.

It goes to show how stories last. Peter Pan was once just words being scribbled down and now there’s a statue in a widely visited park for people to smile at and take pictures of. This book was published in 1911, the Disney film in 1953, along with 6 other adaptions including Pan coming out later this year. This character has been around for over 100 years and people are still watching him on screen and taking pictures of his statue. Fairytales are part of culture and we continue to react strongly to them. We want to see more of them, see them updated, see art of them in city parks.

If you’re in Hyde Park, I’d recommend looking for it. It’s beautifully made and the more you look the more you’ll find. The details are amazing and, as someone who grew up with and loved the Disney adaption, I’m thankful for the opportunity to see it in person.