Tracy's blog

I’m Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so this blog is used to promote my writing and attract people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie. I write a lot about writing, TV, movies, jokes, and my daily life and opinions. I have another blog promoting my TV project at www.thevertexfighter.blogspot.com.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Re: Can Cote D'Ivoire rebuild after a decade of violence?

I got this from Amnesty International. Please donate if you can.


July 28, 2011


Cote d'Ivoire mission report launched today:
Continuing crisis of displacement and insecurity

A message from Alex Neve, Amnesty International, on return from a 2-week human rights research mission to Côte d'Ivoire, West Africa ...
Joseph Begre
“It’s too late for me. I hope it’s not too late for the country.”
- 81 year-old Joseph Atta Begré



“It’s too late for me. I hope it’s not too late for the country.”

With those weary words, 81 year old Joseph Atta Begré summed up his fears and his hopes about the future, for himself and for Côte d’Ivoire.

Our Amnesty International delegation had travelled to his remote village of Gobroko in mid-June, to gather information about widespread human rights violations that had taken place there and in 4 neighbouring villages about 5 weeks earlier. Joseph’s house, which he built close to forty years ago, had been attacked, ransacked and torched during several days of chaotic fighting.

His nephew had been killed. He himself now had nowhere to go. Given his age and frail health, he felt that rebuilding his home and his life was an impossibility. But he certainly wasn’t ready to give up on his country. His conviction that Côte d’Ivoire could and would rebuild, after years of division and violence, was strong.

And that, in many respects, was the theme of our mission. Was the country turning a corner?

I was last in Côte d’Ivoire in early 2003, a few months after an attempted military coup and civil war led to de facto partition of the country between north and south. Those divisions were supposed to heal with a long delayed presidential election late last year. But the contested outcome of that election, when incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo refused to acknowledge that his challenger, Alassane Ouattara, had won -- only deepened the hatred and suspicion that has been at the heart of a decade of violence and human rights violations in the country.

The ensuing human rights crisis devastated an already fragile country. From the time of the election in late November through to the eventual arrest of Laurent Gbagbo in early April, more than one million people were forced to flee from their homes, at least 3,000 people were killed, and rape, torture and other human rights abuses became so commonplace as to be impossible to measure. Amnesty International teams had been to the country twice earlier this year and documented the extent and the gravity of what quickly became a human rights and humanitarian catastrophe.

As we travelled throughout the country in June, our focus was to see if the crisis was coming to an end. Laurent Gbagbo had been arrested on 11 April and was in custody. (We have expressed concern, however, about the fact that he is being held without charge.) Alassane Ouattara was sworn in as the new president on 21 May. Was the country finally ready to leave its long human rights tragedy behind?

There have been some promising developments. President Ouattara has launched a number of commissions and investigations to look into the terrible human rights violations that have occurred in recent months. He has also agreed to have the International Criminal Court carry out its own investigations.

But on the ground, especially in far flung villages in the south and west of the country, what we saw, heard and documented was an ongoing human rights crisis. At least 500,000 people are still too terrified to return to their homes. Human rights violations are being committed daily by the new government’s security forces, the Republic Forces of Côte d’Ivoire, and by the Dozos, a long-established confederacy of hunters that has begun to act as a private pro-government militia. Insecurity reigns.

Not that we did not see hope – everywhere – to bolster Joseph’s conviction; we did.

• The resilience of Clémentine, a remarkable grassroots human rights defender in the west of the country, who travels from village to village gathering information about abuses and offering help to survivors, despite having been attacked and raped herself only a few months ago.

• The doggedness of Raphael, a village chief from the area where Joseph lived, who greeted our arrival by pulling out notebooks full of names, numbers and facts he had gathered about killings and displacement in the five villages, which he had been compiling with confidence that Amnesty International would be sure to show up.

• The smiles and bolstered spirits of people interviewed in earlier Amnesty International missions with whom we were able to share copies of reports and video clips capturing their concerns, through their own words.

• The release of 17 of a group of 38 individuals held for weeks without charge and without access to their families, just over 48 hours after we had spent a day interviewing them in detention.

• The inspiring courage of priests, nuns and pastors who have turned the grounds of their churches and religious missions into places of refuge for displaced people, even though that has exposed them as well to threats and violence.

We have gathered many stories – of loss and of survival, of despair and determination. And as always, it cannot and will not end there. Now is the time for action.

With our report, "We want to go home, but we can’t", we have put numerous recommendations in front of the new government in Côte d’Ivoire, as well as the international community (particularly the UN peacekeeping mission that has been in the country for close to 7 years).
"We want to go home, but can't"

Ivoire report

Read Report


<< We are calling for action to reign in the security forces and the Dozos.

<< We are pressing urgently for a comprehensive action plan to address insecurity and ensure that the displaced can go home.

<< We are urging the UN to ensure that its patrols consistently reach isolated areas of the country.

<< We are highlighting the importance of addressing the continuing high levels of sexual violence that women and girls face.

And we are stressing that after far too many years of impunity, there must be real justice and accountability for human rights violations in Côte d’Ivoire.

There is a way out of a decade of animosity and violence. Joseph’s hope for Côte d’Ivoire is most certainly not misplaced. It lies in human rights. And we will work alongside Clémentine, Raphael and others to make sure that hope becomes reality.

Sincerely

Alex pic

signature

Alex Neve
Secretary General
Amnesty International Canada

P.S.: Thank you for helping to make this trip possible, for making our crisis-response work a priority so that we can bring hope and security back to people who have been devasted by war. With the mission finished the hard work of campaigning begins.

___________________________________________

Amnesty International is a registered charity in Canada. In order to ensure the strict impartiality of our research and reporting, we neither seek nor accept money from any government and rely almost entirely on the support of individuals donors.

The mission to Côte d'Ivoire was funded by caring people like you.

Registered Charity #11878 5914 RR0001

1-800-AMNESTY (1-800-266-3789) | www.amnesty.ca
members@amnesty.ca
312 Laurier Avenue East,
Ottawa ON K1N 1H9




Côte d'Ivoire security forces and a state-backed militia are creating a Ivoire imageclimate of fear that is preventing hundreds of thousands of people displaced by post-election violence from returning to their homes.

<< See press release
<< Download report

Watch video
video cote d'Ivoire

Images from Côte d'Ivoire
collecting testimonies in Cote d'Ivoire
Amnesty International's Alex Neve collecting personal testimonies at Guiglo
Widow
Widow of Elisee Aneammin Monteme
75 year old injured
75 year old injured when her house was burned in Adebem
scarred arm
Scarred arm of man tortured and burned by FRCI in Duekoue
sharing research
Sharing Amnesty research at villages around Duekoue
Interior minister
Meeting with the Interior Minister
Liberian refugees
Liberian refugee camp
lists of people killed
Lists of people killed in villages of Godjiboué and Adébem


Read field reports
Read and listen to Alex Neve's reports from the field during the June 4-17 mission to Côte d'Ivoire
June 6 | June 13 | June 15


Make a donation
Amnesty International's missions are vital to ensuring that leaders and individuals worldwide have accurate facts to guide the process of renewed peace and restoration.
donate









If you wish to unsubscribe from Speak Out, click here

jokes/ funny schemes/ genders being mean

Jul. 27 Jokes: I was watching the Degrassi season finale "Drop the World." KC's friends gave him a gift before he's about to become a father. It's handcuffs to represent fatherhood. lol.

I got this flashback awhile ago about How I Met Your Mother. The "Whoo" Girls. A group of girls who cheer and say "Whoo!" about everything. Cut to each girl cheering, and the subtitle had a translation like: "I never get a second date."

Because that's like me. It's like I meet a guy and we go out once, and that's that.

Fun t-shirt: I was watching Pretty Little Liars and a guy was wearing a t-shirt that said:

"Nerds- picture of a heart- picture of an apple- and the symbol Pi.

Translate: "Nerds love apple pie."

Jul. 28 Funny schemes: I was thinking about schemes used on comedy shows. It was done on Summer Heights High which is a comedy. A guy Jonah drew a picture of his dad touching him so he can get out of English class. Jonah wasn't trying to be funny, but the story was.

If you are going to do that, it should be because you can't skip because you'll get detention. You can't fake sick because J could have done that earlier, and was caught at the mall when he should be at home sick. Also if there is a really big English test he didn't prepare for, and this was his last resort to draw the picture. If it was a regular English class without a test, then he should have gone to it.

There's The Simpsons which is a funny show. Bart does pranks and schemes all the time. Sometimes B does it to be funny like make prank phone calls to Moe's Tavern. There are times like he incited the teacher's strike so he won't have to go to school.

I like these kind of comedy situations to get what you want, but not take down people like on Gossip Girl.

Even on the crime drama In Plain Sight about working for Witness Protection. It surprised the audience. Mary, and her mom Jinx are having lunch with their daughter Brandy, and her fiance, and the fiance's parents.

Jinx: I made the seating arrangements for the party.
J brings up the board from an earlier scene.
J: It will be in Mary's yard and there is room for 100 people.
F's Mom: I wanted more like 400 people.

Brandy: This is like my mom's dream since I was a little girl to plan my wedding party.
Mary: Yeah, she put in a lot of effort last night.
M holds up the board again. lol.

The fiance's family will spend and plan the party. Then after lunch, Mary and Jinx were happy that the other family will do it.

Brandy: Did you just con them to plan the party?
Jinx: Yes.
B: That's good.

It was little like Gossip Girl, but this was funny and no one was trying to take someone down.

Fighting styles: I want to analyze some more.

My sister's fighting style is: "I want to hurt you."
My fighting style is: "I want to get you angry (angrier)."

Genders being mean: I was talking to my friend Angela about how people are jerks. Like on the Jamie Kennedy Experiment, there was a fake talent show. The two guy judges said all these mean comments about Jamie's performance behind his back. They don't ask the woman because she's actually in on the joke.

A: That's because women are generally more compassionate. I think those two guys were being mean so they could play it up to the audience. It's kind of like on American Idol where Simon says mean things to get a rise out of the audience. It gets ratings.

I see her point. I think women aren't trying to be mean, but they tell it like it is. They are more like brutally honest instead of trying to be funny, mean, and get a rise out of audience. I had put this on the "TV Moments that Angry up the Blood thread" a couple years ago.

Me: This doesn't get me angry. But it does annoy me. When a judge makes a negative comment on a talent show like American Idol or So You Think You Can Dance, the audience boos them. It's just an opinion, you can't love every performance."

I remember watching SYTYCD, and the judge Mary Murphy was judging this audition. She said: "This looked like what 5 or 6 yr olds would do at a dance recital." She wasn't trying to be mean, because I would have to say I agree with her. The other two guy judges agreed too. Is there a nicer way for her to say it? I don't think there is a nice way to say it.

Usually I do agree with the comments because it's kind of like they said what I was thinking. There was that show Rock the Cradle. There was a poor performance from a guy. This black woman June said: "That performance was painful." I have to agree with her. That guy was straining to hit the high notes, and I wasn't surprised when he got voted off by the viewers next week. All the judges gave it low ratings like 5/10.

Phrases: There are phrases like "brutally honest", "plain truth", and "truth hurts."

Taste of Edmonton: If you buy $20 worth of tickets, you may be able to get a good, filling meal. That's how much you would spend if you went to a sit down dinner in a restaurant. At Taste, if you don't buy any of those bubble tea drinks, lemonade, wine, coconut drinks in a coconut, or dessert like gelato, or other frozen treats, if you just buy the food. The food are like appetizers, so you have to buy only the hot food, no drinks or desserts, to get a filling meal.

Rookie Blue: I was watching it tonight and I got emotional. First I see Cory Lee and Samantha Munro from Degrassi on. Both shows are shot in Toronto. Det. Barber had a witness and lost him, then found him shot in the head. The gun was found in the Pimp's place where Dana (Samantha Munro) was. They lost a major witness before the trial, and they need a replacement. Andy and Jo convinces Dana to help the police.

Andy and Jo take Dana to the motel to protect her from the Pimp. Andy sees that Jo had hotel matches in her bag, so she knows there's something going on between Jo and Andy's fiance Luke. J and L have dated before. Last episode L did cheat on A with J. A left the motel, came back and J is hurt. Dana had beaten J up with a shower rod and escaped.

D calls pimp and cops got the call and mentioned a condo to meet at. The cops are at stake out to get Pimp and their witness. Pimp had gun and arrested him because you know he thought D had snitched and will shoot her. D starts crying as A holds her back. I got a little teary eyed her. There was good music and tension that was built up to the arrest.

In the middle of the ep, Epstien and Peck looked for a murder witness and found a little kid. They talk to him, but he doesn't talk back. He says something in Russian and I thought he wouldn't know how to speak English. I see the cop who does the translation is also on the Toronto shot cop show The Bridge. The kid's wrists have marks on them so it means he's been tied up.

They talk to the kid's adoptive parents and they said their therapist told them to tie his hands up. They want to hug him or pat him on the shoulder, and he freaks out because he's not used to being touched at all in the orphanage. Peck hands the kid a map, and he hands it to his mom. I got a little teary eyed here because he's interacting with his parents.

Cut back to Dana and she says she will take the rap for the Pimp.

D: I'm 17 and I will be out of jail in one or two years. If I talk, I will always look over my shoulder.
Andy: What did you see tonight?
D: I saw my man coming to take me home. That gun was for protection. I want my lawyer.

Gail Peck's mom makes an appearance because she's the superintendent. She's very uptight and strict. I like the part where she asks the little kid: "Did you see the big bad man who shot someone?" She used her facial expressions and hands, and the Russian kid understood it by shaking his head. I like that they mention Halifax.

I like how the characters work to get information and not have it handed easily. Traci and Swarek are driving an addict who said he's clean. They drove for a long time trying to get him to talk. Finally he says: "Look he says he's gone legit. Like he bought 4 condos under his mom's name." Now that's some good info.

Luke cheated on Andy, but A has packed her bags up and left.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

job interview/ Taste of Edmonton/ artists

Jul. 25 Job interview: I did a job interview today in the evening. That's when I usually go out at night, to do interviews. I don't go out with my friends very often. I did some shopping before my interview started. I went to the book store and they sold all these electronic reader holders for your Kindle. It's a Chapters/ Indigo/ Coles which is all one big company. There is a great sale for journals. The original price for them are $10-$12, and now they're selling it for $1-$5.

Did you know the American bookstore Borders will be closing down in Sept.?

Dateline: My friend Sherry emailed me back about Dateline and these are her comments:

"Hearing friends say you should stop something, and KNOWING you are addicted are two different things. it has seemed to me and is the basis of some groups that the step between not knowing and knowing that a person needs to take before they can truly fight an addiction. therapy can help a person come to terms with where they have been and where they are, but it's like when something suddenly 'clicks' inside that that person will change from who they were before. bummer is, you can guess what might trigger the change, but you cannot force it.

Predators are good at not being caught, and it is a game for the more extreme ones. also, hearing that something is wrong and realizing that what you are doing IS that something is not always cut and dried."

I wanted to add about that video clip of the 35 yr old guy who was going to "date" a 12 yr old girl. Here's the video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14FZUc8_rWI

What annoys me is that the guy is so fake. It was like watching a really flamboyant gay guy date a straight woman. He was so pretending he was into the girl when he wasn't. I'm not saying he's gay. From the video, I'm getting the vibe that he is desperate for a girlfriend, he will date anyone of the opposite sex.

If he's so desperate, either date a 18 yr old girl or date someone way older like 50 yrs old. It seems this guy wants real love, and a 12 yr old girl will fall in love with him. If he buys a prostitute, then it's an acting job for her. She pretends to be interested in him. I was talking to my friend Angela about it.

A: It sounds like you're defending him.
Me: No, I'm not defending him. I'm explaining why he would date a 12 yr old instead of buying a prostitute. It's more real if a 12 yr old truly falls in love with him instead of a prostitute pretending to fall in love with him.

Jul. 27 Taste of Edmonton: Today I went to work and then spent 2 hrs on the internet looking for a job. I applied to 15 places today. I decided to have some fun. I went downtown and deposited a large amount of tips into my bank account.

I went to City Centre and see that Costa Blanca's store is closing down, so go shop there because there's a big sale. There's a new store called IXIA Boutique where that formal wear store was.

Now about the Taste of Edmonton. I signed up for a draw to win a free digital camera, and I signed up to win tickets to see the play Wicked. The Edmonton Journal gave a good review about it saying it's about The Wizard of Oz before Dorothy came. I signed up for the draw to win $50 gift certificates to restaurants in Edmonton.

I didn't buy any food because I wanted to save money. I told my brother and he said: "The portions are too small." If you want a little bit of everything from Greek to Chinese to Ukrainian to Indian food in one place, I guess you kind of pay for the convenience. It's $1 a ticket. The food is mostly $4-$5. A few are $3.

Artists: I went to Taste last year and I collected these business cards from artists. I meant to write about them in my weekly email, but I didn't. So I'm writing it now a year later. It turns out there are a couple of artists from last year who came back out this year.

Bernadette McCormark: She's a good artist. I like her style of bright colors and the vibe is so happy and cheerful. It's mostly nature like trees. Here's my favorite one. It's of hands reaching out for stars, hearts, flowers and leaves. It's called "Give."

http://www.bernadettemccormack.com/itoolkit.asp?pg=products&specific=jnmrmqp8

Saeed Hojjati: He's really talented. The detail is so good. It's the kind of thing I would see in a art museum. He paints a lot of streets, doors, and windows.

http://www.sansaeart.com/sansaeart/home

Chris Riley: I like his details and the paintings are so beautiful. I looked at the paintings today. Then I was going through my desk and found this business card. I went on the site and then realized his art was here this yr and last yr. I really like his website. It plays this nice soft music when you look at the art.

www.rileyart.com

Jayna Simpson: I got this business card last month, but I forgot what festival. I then went to her website and it was for the Art and Design Festival. She makes these huge murals for homes, businesses, and kids rooms. I laughed at the Super Mario one. She paints these Buddha statues.

Check it out:

www.paintedplanet.org

Fun: I was riding on the bus to downtown today and I was reading the Globe and Mail Life section with the headline: "The dog stole my freedom." A man who sat behind me asks if he could take a picture so he could send it to his friend." I said yes.

The article was written by Kevin Bray and he talks about how this poodle he got has taken over his life. It was work to take care of a dog.

Twilight Zone: I read this article in the Edmonton Journal on Jul. 10 and clipped it ut. "Cross over into the Twilight Zone- and find today's movie plots" by Maureen Dowd. It talked about the creator Rod Serling: "...Serling's father, a middle- class grocer, lost his business in the Depression, so Rod had an early lesson in reversals."

Doug Brode, Serling's friend said: "Many Zone episodes are about that split- second of fate where somebody arbitrarily gets spared or, absurdly does not."

I was talking about reversals with my friend Angela and she asked: "Is this for your writing?" Of course. A few months ago I saw this episode where a woman named Marsha buys a gold thimble on the 9th floor of the department store. There's no 9th floor says the manager. She talked to a sales woman who sold it to her.

Later, Marsha sees the back of the sales woman, and then it turns out the sales woman was a mannequin! That was kind of scary. Marsha tries to run out of the store later, but is trapped in an elevator. The door opens, and the mannequin is standing there. Aah! The mannequin turns into the sales woman and helps out Marsha.

Turns out that Marsha is a mannequin herself. Each mannequin lives outside with humans for a month. Marsha had forgotten what she really was.

Actors: I was watching Pretty Little Liars and I see Dagney Kerr at the dinner party. I wrote about her before awhile ago. She played Buffy's roommate on Buffy and was a nurse on Desperate Housewives. It was interesting to see her here.

Ethnic diversity: Maybe not as interesting when I noticed an East Indian guy at the party. My sister noticed it too. PLL doesn't really have a lot of ethnic diversity, kind of like The OC.

If I see someone of a different race on this show, I notice it immediately. There was a black woman who played the swim coach and was on for a few episodes. There is the Hispanic cop Garrett who actually has a pivotal point in the series. He seems good, but he's really bad and is working against the 4 girls.

A few episodes ago, I saw two different black guys in two different parts of an episode. I will give points they are showing a little bit more of people of different races.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Post Secret/ rant/ The Help

Jul. 24 Post Secret: Here a couple postcards:

"I'm 61, been jobless for a year, and I buy a lottery ticket each week to keep from killing myself."

"I think I need pills to save my marriage and family."

Sometimes you need these little things to get us through the day.

Job search: I took 2 days off from my job search when I was on vacation. It took me 4 days to get back up to speed.

Crazy trigger: I was reading the National Post and this guy was going to live tapings of TV shows like Saturday Night Live. I read the one where he went to see the Maury show. I haven't watched that show in 5 yrs, but I had to read about the experience. The writer had to sign a contract to say that he wasn't drunk before he got on the bus to be driven to the studio. lol. Seriously.

Maury wasn't there, but there was a guest host. It's not shot in NYC, it's shot in Stamford, Conneticut.

That totally triggered my memory of The Baby- Sitter's Club books by Ann M. Martin when I read them when I was a kid. The book series is about a group of 11-13 yr old girls who are in a club that is like a business. They give their baby- sitting services around their fictional town Stoneybrook, Conneticut. They sometimes travel to Stamford. lol.

Jul. 25 Rant: This morning I got into a fight with my sister. I'm going to write this in script format and you tell me who's wrong or more wrong.

S: Why didn't you open the blinds? Now my grandma has to open them.
Tracy: I didn't think I had to.
S: Grandma does that every morning. Whatever, poverty line.
T doesn't say anything. T finishes reading a section of the paper.
A few moments later, S takes the other newspaper.

S: Why didn't you put the newspaper the way you found it? You know I hate it when it's not put back together!
T doesn't say anything.

It's totally okay if you say I'm wrong or more wrong than my sister. I realized this the other day. My sister and I fight the exact same way when we were younger. Like that time back when I was 13 and my sister was 15. I want you to tell me who's wrong or more wrong here.

Cut to Wal-mart.
S: Do you want to get some fries?
T: I want to save my money for something that I want.
S (angrily): Then why are you at the mall?
T (in an even tone): So I could buy the B-Witched cd.
S: Then why didn't you go to HMV?

T: I did. I couldn't find it.
S (stomps her left leg angrily): What do you mean you couldn't find it?
T: I couldn't find it.
There is a pause as they look at each other. T's eyes are half- closed.

S: Then you go to the Pop section and look under B. Then it will be there.
T's eyes droop even more and they're barely open. T looks bored, and tired, and not paying attention.
S: And if you keep looking at me like that, I'll kick your ass.

S walks over and is about to knee T, but T lifts up her leg to block it.

Friends: I remember I emailed the above to my friend Angela a few years ago. She said: "In this case your sister is wrong, however it sounds more like 2 immature siblings arguing." Well Angela dissed me for being immature, but that's okay.

Subtext: The above arguments are what we call subtext. I don't know if you notice it. My sister fights aggressively by saying mean things to hurt your feelings. I fight passive- aggressively. I don't say mean things. In the Wal- Mart scene, I was blatantly trying to get my sister riled by looking at her the wrong way. And when she threatened to beat me up, I was happy that I got her angrier.

She had gotten me angry already with her treating me like I was stupid by asking why I was at the mall and why I hadn't gone to HMV when I did. In today's morning scene, I'm sure you noticed my sister being aggressive towards me. She dissed me straight up by saying "poverty line" as in a shot at me for not making a lot of money. I subtly retaliated by not putting the newspaper the way she wanted it.

If she didn't diss me, I would have put the newspaper the way she wanted it. But since she did diss me, I am going to purposely rile her up. I was also happy that I got her to lash out at me about the newspaper.

Passive- aggressive: I don't care if you guys diss me. I'm sure some of you are thinking: "I would rather fight with your sister. At least she's aggressive, and honest and being straight up with her disdain for you, instead of hiding it. As for you Tracy, I find your passive- aggressive actions way worse. If you got a problem with her, you don't look at her the wrong way or do something that annoys her." But you got to give me points that I didn't yell at her.

Look old habits die hard. I'm sure if my sister reads this, what will she do to annoy me? Well she will say hurtful things to me. Or she will be like: "Don't give Tracy the satisfaction of seeing you riled up."

I'm going to bring up that Grace thing again. Grace was a friend who was annoying me and disrespecting me. When I was 10, I up and left to go to Calgary and didn't tell her. I was gone for a few days and when I got back, she didn't seem angry with me. I wanted her to feel hurt and abandoned that I didn't tell her when I left town. I was mildly disappointed that she didn't lash out at me and said: "How come you left without telling me?" But I was happy to get away from her for a few days.

Norway: I'm sure all of you heard about the massacre in Norway where one man killed 93 people. I was reading in the Edmonton Journal, he was dressed up like a police man and saying: "You can come out now." From an eye witness account, the gun man then shot 20 people who were walking towards him at close range. I was very disturbed by that.

I'll add this as another example to the argument: "People as a whole, suck." I asked Angela if she agreed with that statement.

A: No, because there are a lot of good people in the world who do really great things.

Sayings: Now let's talk about more positive things. I watched this episode of Pretty Little Liars and the line was: "Sometimes when you have a hammer, everything you see is a nail."

The Help: I was watching 20/20 and it discussed the book The Help which will be a movie coming out this summer. It's about black maids who worked for white employees, and raised the white kids as their own. This white woman Kathryn Stockett wrote it because her grandma's black housekeeper Dimitri raised her. This was in the 1960s.

One of the black actresses Viola Davis was interviewed, and discussed how she got the part.

VD: I made voodoo dolls of Jennifer Hudson and Queen Latifah.
lol.

They interviewed Elizabeth who was raised by Arlene. Arlene was later fired. An adult told his son to spray black kids with mace. Elizabeth helped the black kids wash their eyes.

Alma is a black maid and a white woman told her she can't use the washroom in the house that she was working in. She got her money and left, because she didn't need to be treated like that.

Ivy was raised by Dorothy. They haven't seen each other in years. 20/20 helped reunite them. Ivy made a Facebook comment on The Help fan page. 20/20 read it and they got Ivy to come to NY. Dorothy lived in NYC and was taken to Central Park. She was surprised by Ivy. They hugged. Ivy read a heartfelt letter to D: "Thank you for all the hugs you gave me."

The show reported that 50% of nannies are white, and 10% are black.

Music video: This song is from 2006, but I still like it. I actually saw the video "I Will Love Again" by Taras. It's a fast dance song that you can dance to. If you watch the video, it is insightful and deep instead of people dancing. It shows quick clips of relationships that have gone wrong or gone well. You should check it out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcEprw84Qto

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Amy Winehouse/ DNA/ Superhumans

Jul. 23 Amy Winehouse: I just read on Yahoo news that the singer Amy Winehouse has died at age 27. Part of the article said: "Sad, but no surprise." That's what I was thinking. She has drug and alcohol problems and though there aren't any details on how she died, I am guessing it's drugs and alcohol. At least you can always listen to her music.

DNA: I was reading in the Globe and Mail Life section about "The Twin Project." In the article it mentioned intelligence is 85% inheritable. 45% of your personality is inherited from your parents. That's interesting. I immediately thought: "Then how come I'm not in university studying business?" My siblings did, and all my cousins are except one. She studied science, but she did go to university.

Job search news: I was reading in the Globe and Mail business section about this website called My Job Hunter. In the article it mentioned how this man pays this website to look for a job for him. There are people in India helping him look for a job. He types in the criteria for what kind of job he wants like a "sales director", but the computer will then apply him to several places that aren't relevant to his search.

He has applied to sales associate positons, hair salons because of the search word "sales." He did say it was helpful because through the website, he was able to apply to 700 places in 3 months. Here's the website:

http://www.myjobhunter.com/how_it_works.php

In my opinion, it's about "Time is money." You either go and spend time to look for a job or you spend money and pay someone or a website to look for a job for you.

Prostitution: I read this in 24 News, that men who pay for sex are more likely to commit crimes. That's not a total surprise because if a man is respectable, he would most likely be able to get a relationship and have sex with this woman. But if he's not respectable, then he would have to pay for it.

There is even a book called Paying for It by Chester Brown, about a guy who pays for sex. He says he doesn't want a girlfriend, he just wants sex. Here's a book review about it. He does seem to be a nice and smart guy from what I read.

http://arts.nationalpost.com/2011/05/06/book-review-paying-for-it-by-chester-brown/

Dateline: I was talking to my friend Angela yesterday about Dateline: To Catch a Predator.

Me: On the show, they have said: "If you have urges to have sex with children, go to therapy."
Angela: But what if therapy doesn't help? Millions of people in the world have addictions and they can't help themselves. It's like they know they should stop drinking, but they can't put down the drink.

I thought about it some more, and I thought: "If you have urges to have sex with children, watch Dateline: To Catch a Predator." Look at and imagine the reality and the consequences of getting arrested and ruining your life. You would go to jail and be on the sex offender registration. Therapy doesn't hurt.

Superhumans: I was watching 20/20 last night and they profiled superhumans.

Jeb Corbis: They interviewed Jeb Corbis. He wears a wing suit that helps him glide/ fly down. As a kid, he moved around a lot. As a teen he was depressed and he started base jumping as kind of a way to commit suicide. If he jumps and the parachute doesn't pull out, then he dies.

They showed videos of him base jumping from the Eiffel Tower, bridges, mountains, and other buildings. When he started base jumping, he started feeling alive again.

Jackie Evancho: She is an 11 yr old girl who can sing opera. She was 8 and saw The Phantom of the Opera and she started singing the songs. She entered a talent contest and was first runner up to a 20 yr old opera singer. She then entered a Youtube contest, and that lead her to America's Got Talent. She cried when she got a standing ovation on the show.

A doctor did a test on her. It's her brain that coordinates her lungs and that's how she can sing so well when she's so young. They talked about a tennis player who's arm is normal, but his brain is a little different and that's how he can play tennis so well. JE has an album out and it debuted at #2, right behind Eminem.

Chris Waddel: His legs are paralyzed. He sits on a 4 wheel bike and he pedals with his arms. He climbs a mountain by biking up the mountain. He had a ski accident at 20, and was paralyzed. He won medals in the Paralympics.

When he was climbing the mountain, and the road was bumpy with rocks, the team put planks so he could wheel over it. He learned a lesson: "Nobody climbs a mountain well." It's okay to ask for help.

Stephen Witshire: He is a British black man who has a photographic memory. He rides a helicopter for 30 min over NYC. He then draws the skyline from memory. It took him 3 days. He can draw very well. He sells his art for thousands of dollars. He is an autistic savant. He acts like a normal person, you won't notice he has autism. Maybe he has a high functioning form of it like Aspergers.

They showed footage when he was 12, and he acted more autistic with his nodding of the head. When he was 5, that's when he first learned to talk and said the word "paper" so he could draw.

Ashley Battles: She is a wing walker. At first she was a pilot. She wears a Wonder Woman outfit and she walks on the plane wings as it flies at 165 mph. Amanda Franklin is a wing walker, and she died when the engine broke down. Ashley cired when talking about her.

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/slideshow/ashley-battles-historic-wing-walkers-14117228

Schemes: I was talking to Angela and she said she would get bored of Gossip Girl fast due to the scheming.

Me: There's scheming in Desperate Housewives, but it's mainly to get what they want, and not to take down somebody.
Angela: Yeah, or to protect someone.

Sometimes it's for comedy like Lynette doesn't want her husband Tom to go to college to study Chinese because he will most likely quit, and waste time and money. When she gets the phone message about the college scheduling the test for Tom to take tomorrow, she immediately says: "Let's go out for dinner" and got Tom drunk. Then when they get home late, she plays the message.

Tom won't have any time to prepare for the test, get a good night's sleep, and be hung over. After the test, T says he wants to take Chinese so it could help him in business because that's a very common language. L realized she made a mistake, and T did pass the test, so everything's good.

There is the drama like how Bree's son Andrew ran over Carlos's mom. Bree has to protect her son, so she has to scheme a way so Andrew won't get arrested.

This is a good show. I've been watching it for 7 yrs, and never got bored. They did this a few times with a new neighbor moves in the neighborhood at the beginning of each season, and they have a secret and mystery to solve. However, each secret is different so the solution is different. It's not repetitive.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

rant/ vacation/ license plates

Jul. 16 Rant: This morning my sister said she was annoyed that when I go through the newspaper classifieds, I cross out the job ads after I'm finished reading them. She told me to not do that months ago. She says that I should throw them in the recycle bin so she won't have to look at them (and get annoyed by it.) So today I did just that. Prior to that, I did stop reading the classifieds and crossing them out (in front of her.)

Then she asks if I finished using my perfume because she doesn't like smelling it. I didn't put it on around her today. When I do put it on, I go to the dining room to read the newspaper so she won't have to smell it. She had told me to stop turning the knob when I lock the door to leave. My grandma has said the same thing too. So today I closed the door, and turned it once. As you can see, I change my behavior, so I won't get nagged about it. Or I do the annoying things, just not around her.

However, I was going through this one newspaper looking for something. She had the A section which has the contents, but I didn't want to ask her for the section. I came back later after she was done with it so I could see the contents. I was ruffling through the newspaper.

S: What are you looking for?
Me: My horoscopes.
S: You're never going to go anywhere in life.

I'm ruffing through the newspaper and you go and diss me about something that's not even related to this situation. I don't go and diss her. I don't purposely do things to annoy her. I will admit on rare occasions I do, like put on my headphones and sing to my music while I'm in my room. She's in her room which is next to mine and hears me. However, she's mainly annoyed at me because I am myself.

Hard Candy: This was way back in 2006 when I first saw this movie Hard Candy about a sociopath 14 yr old girl who tortures a 32 yr old sexual predator she met online. I had written a movie review about it in my weekly email to all my friends. In it I said: "My nitpick is how the girl was this stuck up overachiever who kept saying: 'I'm an honors student. I can figure it out.'"

I didn't like it when she said that, not because it was repetitive. She only said it a few times in the movie. It was because it reminded me of my stuck up overachiever sister. Now I look back and think how it can come off to some people, like: "What? You don't like this girl because she's stuck up? What about the fact that she's a self- righteous vigilante who is torturing someone?"

Well that's my personal opinion.

Jul. 17 Saying: I was watching Heartland about a Alberta horse ranch. A line was: "For a horse, relief equals reward." I would say that also applies to humans.

I'm different: As a teenager and in my early 20s, I was more interested in having fun. I always wanted to watch TV and movies, but now I just want to do stuff. I know how to balance work and fun, but I feel like my free time should be spent more doing productive things like reading the newspaper, writing my script, and working on my blog.

Hobby: I think I may have read this in the horoscopes section a long time ago: "Do a hobby that relaxes you and makes you think."

Jul. 20 Vacation: I was on vacation for the past 3 days. I went to Calgary. On Jul. 17, my parents and grandma and I drove to Calgary. We left in the morning and got there by noon and we went out for lunch at a Chinese restaurant. Then we drove for 2 hrs because we had to find a relative's place, but it was hard to find. Coincidentally when we asked for directions, there was an Asian man who spoke Cantounese and was also from Edmonton who got there yesterday.

We drove a bit more, and then asked for directions from 2 other Asians and they lead us to the house. So people are nice. Also the neighborhood had a lot of Asians. We then went out for dinner at another Chinese restaurant with family friends, and I bumped into a friend's son. We haven't seen each other in years. The son asked me what grade I was in. I did say: "Look, I know we haven't seen each other in years, but I've graduated. I'm 25."

Come to think of it, I haven't seen him probably since I was in elementary school. We didn't even know each other's names. He's married and 34 yrs old. He brought his 2 and a half yr old son Jayden and 2 week old Nicholas. I said: "Jayden is the same name as one of Britney Spears son and the son of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith." The name is a little trendy. I was then able to hold the 2 week old baby, though my parents were hesitant for me hold him. My grandma had her hands under the baby as I was holding him.

I don't know, I guess my parents don't see me as responsible to hold a baby when I'm 25. Well I never held a baby before until then.

Jul. 18: The next day, we had lunch at home. After lunch my mom and I went to the mall. We went shopping individually. It was like a 2hr and 15 min shopping trip. I haven't been shopping since last month with Leslie. I read the Calgary Herald. My uncle also had the book Freakanomics in his basement. I found it and read it. He told me I could keep it. At first I thought I could read it fast, and I did. But it's a really good book.

We stayed at my aunt and uncle's place for the first time. All those years since I was a kid, we always stayed at my grandparents' house until my grandpa passed away last year. The house is being renovated and I helped move some furniture. We went to the nursing home and it's really nice. We then had a barbacue at home. I haven't been to a barbacue in years.

Jul. 19: The day after that we moved some more things from my grandma's house. We went to another Chinese restaurant for lunch. We then went home and had to find the highway, that took some time. We were driving when it rained very hard. It was cloudy and foggy, and we can only see a few feet ahead of us on the road.

We then got home and made noodles. I was on the computer at my aunt and uncle's house for a few min. I couldn't access my email though, but I checked my blogs. No comments were made.

License plates: In Edmonton, I saw this one: "DECOR8T" (decorate.)

I was in the car a lot on my vacation, but in Calgary, I saw a lot of personalized license plates:

4SOCCER
GIRLIE 7
MASCAR
BRIAH
INEEDLE
AMYNAH
ROTEWGN
DOLFIN1

I really liked: "REDD2GO" (ready to go on a car is a good message.)

I saw a yellow car with the license plate: "NOTMELO." Oh yeah like: "Not mellow yellow." That's fun.

Job interview: Today I went to a job interview. It was like an hr to get there. I did some talking, but the interviewer did a lot of explaining about the job. She was Asian, and there were all these Asian paintings on the wall. It's the kind of thing I would see at a Chinese restaurant. You're probably thinking: "That's because you went to a lot of Chinese restaurants for the past few days." I go to Chinese restaurants for years, and a lot of them have those kind of paintings.

My dad told me the company was run by a Chinese guy. The job sounded really hard, and there are a lot of interviews to be done for the next 2 weeks. I won't hold my breath.

Friday, July 15, 2011

comedy comparisons/ self- analysis/ schemes

Jul. 11 Comedy comparisons: Here's one about family.

It was done on the TV show Dinosaurs about a family of dinosaurs that act like humans.

Earl is the dad, Robbie is the teenage son, and Charlene is the teenage daughter.

Robbie: We saw how hard you worked, so I cooked dinner, and Charlene set the table to help you out.
Earl: Wow, this is like a caring and cooperative unit of some sort.
Charlene: You mean like a family?
Earl: Yes.

There's one on Futurama about a delivery business set in the future:

Professor Farnsworth: I thought this was a cheap source of labor, you know like a family.

Writer's jokes: This is a writer's joke that I got from the Linked In writing group Two Bits.

Alice Shadell says: "I'm thinking of Snoopy in the Charlie Brown cartoon who sent off a manuscript, and they returned it saying: 'Here are a few rejection slips for the next few books you may be writing.'"

I read a cartoon from Bizarro. One editor says to another: "Your article was [sic]."

Jul. 12 Funny video: I was watching Jay Leno and there's a real news report of how the Late Show with David Letterman studio was vandalized.

Reporter: We have security footage of the 22 yr old man.
Cut to Jay Leno walking away from the David Letterman studio.

Cut back to Jay Leno.
JL: I knew I was going to get blamed for that.

That kind of reminds me of James Van Der Beek appearing in Kesha's music video "Blow." He's a serious actor and he's playing around in the video.
I like how he poked fun at himself. lol.

Funny commercial: I saw this commercial where people are proudly saying: "I'm a loser." Then it turns out they're selling Minute Maid juice because it's about losing cholesterol.

Job search: I did a little job interview on the phone today. I applied to this company multiple times, and I finally got a result with this phone call.

Goals: Everyday I look at my list of goals and see if I did something to achieve it.

1. Get an office job. Done that, I applied to 24 places today.
2. Get The Vertex Fighter script produced. I put up a blog post on my The Vertex Fighter blog today. Today's post is about screenwriting books that I have read.
3. Write the Rain script. I always get stuck on this one with my writer's block.

It's a lot easier to do the first 2 things on my list, though it's not fun at all like writing.

Self- analysis: My sister told me about this Simple Productivity Blog on how to plan the next year. It asks questions like: :"What do I most want to experience next this year?" "What books do I want to read this year?" "Where do I want to be with in my career?"

http://www.simpleproductivityblog.com/how-to-plan-your-new-year/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Simpleproductivityblog+%28SimpleProductivityBlog.com%29&utm_content=Google+Reader

Jul. 15 Robia LaMorte: Does this name sound familiar to you? She played Jenny Calender on Buffy. I was recycling my newspapers and I saw an article about her. She now travels the world and is a minister. Seriously. Check out her website:

http://www.robialamorte.com/main.html

Headline: Here's a fake headline from Jay Leno: "Dateline: To Catch a Predator Catcher." Show a picture of Chris Hansen. CH is currently in the news for cheating on his wife. His actions are bad, but I still like that Dateline: To Catch a Predator show.

Radio joke: I was listening to 91.7 The Bounce radio station.

DJ: Someone called asking for blow. I realized how that sounds. It's for Kesha's song "Blow."

lol. I totally knew he was talking about the song, and not the drug before he explained it.

Schemes: I have gotten sick of watching Gossip Girl and all the scheming they do on the show where they manipulate and play games with people. It's mainly revenge and getting back at people. They use all this time and energy over something that's not important, and that's not good to go around humiliating people.

I like watching crime- dramas where the characters use their time and energy to do important things like solve a murder. Or the characters plan a murder. There is actually a point to the episode.

At first Gossip Girl was okay with the schemes and betrayals, until it got too repetitive. I can occasionally watch people conning one another and seeing a betrayal that make you say: "Wow, that was unpredictable. I didn't see that one coming." Since it occurs all the time on this show, it really lacks the surprise element.

In my scripts, there is a little betrayal in the story lines. Like the good guy has to take the criminal down. That's an important thing to do.

Saying: I was watching Pretty Little Liars and Emily wrote a fake acceptance letter to a college to give to her mom, so Emily could stay in Rosewood. I got a flashback of how I read this book when I was 11. The saying was: "If you can't get it honestly, than it's not worth getting at all."

Emily decides against giving the letter to her mom. This also brings another flashback of how I really wanted to go to this performing arts high school, but my parents wouldn't let me. I could have gotten them to sign the form where I was to transfer schools, and put the school I wanted to go to instead of the school they wanted me to go to.

I was able to predict the consequences and didn't do it. My parents would be so mad at me that I did that so I could get what I want. I was 14, I really wanted to be an actor and I thought by going to that school, I would have a really good shot at making it.

Now that I'm 25, and more mature, I can really see the consequences. It's not like I stole money out of their wallets, but it is still disrespectful to do something like this behind their backs. They wouldn't trust me afterwards. Also if they found out I was going to that high school, they would immediately arrange that I go to their school choice. I wouldn't have gotten what I wanted anyway.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

work/ child abuse/ kids at risk

Jul. 10 Work: In Jan. 2010-Mar. 2010, I worked at the Soup place and didn't get any shifts from Call Centre #3. In the mornings at around 9am I would be on twop.com reading the 16 and Pregnant thread comments. Then I would always get a call from the Soup place and be asked to come to work. I always do. I usually only get to read 1 or 2 pages and then have to bookmark it and take the bus to work.

Since I got laid off from the Soup place in Mar. 2010, all I do is look for an office job constantly.

Look alike: For some reason I thought the actors Ryan Merriman and Jason Dohring kind of looked alike.

Here's Jason Dohring:

http://www.thehunkies.com/jason-dohring/

Here's Ryan Merriman:

http://prettylittleliars.us/ryan-merriman-ian-thomas/

They have oval faces, same skin tone, similar hair color. They have different eye colors and the facial features are different.

Casey Anthony: I'm sure you've all heard about this case where it seems like this woman killed her 2 yr old daughter Caylee. She was found not guilty for murder, but was found guilty for giving false information to the police. With credit for timer served and good behavior, she will be released soon.

Everybody thinks she's guilty, and though she may not go to jail, she won't be able to live a normal life out in the real world. People will probably be harassing her.

I was watching CNN, and Lisa Bloom says this about Casey Anthony's lawyer: "He pulled victory from the jaws of defeat." I like that line, I should use it.

Action: I've been told that in screenwriting to show, don't tell. I was watching Pretty Little Liars.

Cut to Boss giving Toby an envelope and shaking his hand. Toby looks sad.
The audience knows he has been dismissed without dialogue.

T goes to Spencer and says: "The family doesn't want me to do construction work because they have a daughter. He's going to pay me for the rest of the week."

Jul. 11 Question: I was reading my alumni newsletter from my college. It interviewed a graduate and asked: "What is your greatest achievement since graduating out of college?"

For some of my friends, I can think they would answer that they used their college education and got a career in their field. As for me? I got a bank job, but I wasn't able to keep it. I got another office job all on my own, but wasn't able to keep it either.

I completed my first full- length script and have been pitching it. That's an accomplishment.

Job search: It's been 8 months of looking for an office job. I'm going to have to expand my search a bit more. I'm going to apply to places that are bit further away and have to make more of an effort to get to. I have taken 2 buses for 45min to get to a job interview. Let's move it up to 2 buses for 1 hr to get to one.

I have already gotten out of my comfort zone of downtown offices, to Kingsway, but I need to push myself more.

Child abuse: I was watching Oprah and she interviewed 19 yr old twin sisters Kathie and Kellie who were sexually abused from ages 5-13 yrs old. They lived in a nice neighborhood in Witchita. Their family didn't have a lot of money though. They were raped by their older brother Andrew repeatedly. They were also raped by their other older brother Matthew. Then were raped by their dad Brad.

The twins told their mom Lisa a couple yrs into the abuse from their two brothers. The mom didn't believe them, and didn't do anything about it. She goes out at night, and the twins told her: "If you leave us, they will rape us." She goes out anyway. They kept telling their mom, and then she told the dad Brad. There was a family meeting, and the dad hits the brothers and told them to stop doing that to their sisters.

Then Brad asks one of the twins: "What did they do? Show me." The dad then starts molesting them. Lisa has walked in on a brother raping a twin, and mom leaves the room. They also raped their younger sister Rachelle who is a yr younger than the twins.

Brad left the family and he gave Kellie a $100 bill when there is no food or electricity in the house. The twins talked about not being able to concentrate in school. The neighbors Jim and Shelly were like parents to the kids. The twins were confronted by a suspicious relative about abuse, but the twins didn't tell the relative. They then told Shelly.

Shelly wanted to call the police right away, but the twins said they had to talk to their mom Lisa first so the family won't suspect that the police will come. Two days later, Shelly tells a friend who's a sex crime detective, and then calls 911. Police came and got all the kids out of the house.

Two days later, Andrew and Matthew were arrested. 5 days later, Brad was arrested. Kellie was afraid of foster care from watching movies and the news. Her family was "corrupt", but it was their family. Foster care is a different family so she figured she can take the abuse from her own family than from strangers.

Mom Lisa was charged with 3 counts of endangerment because she didn't stop the abuse. She spent 9 days in prison, 2 months in a work release program. When she was arrested, she didn't ask about her kids. There was a video clip where she says she feels guilty for what happened, and that she didn't stop it. She did say she was sorry.

Andrew confessed to all the abuse in the interrogation.
A: My father does this too, so it's okay.
Cop: What would you like to do now?
A: I want to spend more quality time with my sisters.

A won't be eligible for parole until 2028. Shelly asks the twins if she can keep in contact with A while he's in jail, so she can help him. The twins said yes. A reads a letter to Shelly over the phone apologizing to the twins.

Matthew may be out of jail as soon as next yr.

Brad was charged with 3 counts of rape, and 1 for aggravated assault and won't be eligible for parole for 17 yrs.

Child abuse signs: The signs are the kids are often left alone. There are signs of neglect. The kids go to your house, and don't want to leave.

Kids at Risk: I found this site awhile ago, I think it was through when I was looking for a job. It's about the foster care system in Alberta. There are over 50, 000 children in Alberta living in poverty. Alberta has over 10,000 children in care. 12 children have died in foster care since 2008.

There aren't enough front line social workers to handle all the cases, and kids slip through the cracks. Here's a 9:40 sec video to watch where they interview social workers.

Please sign the petition to help:

http://www.yourworkingpeople.com/stories/kidsatrisk

You can also donate to the Youth Emergency Shelter that helps teenagers:

http://www.yess.org/

You can donate to Kids Kottage that helps kids:

http://www.kidskottage.org/core.html

Jul. 12: I also remember an older episode of Oprah from like what- 2005? This young woman was molested by her step dad and talked to Oprah. Then they brought the step dad from jail into the show. He was handcuffed, and then his handcuffs were taken off when he was on stage.

Woman: Did you molest my mentally disabled sister?
Step dad: Yes.
Woman cries and Oprah rubs her back to console her.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

music videos/ original/ Rookie Blue

Jul.8 Music videos: I heard this song by Jennifer Hudson's called "No One Gonna Love You." It's a fast song and I like it. The new music video has her arguing with her boyfriend and he doesn't show up at the restaurant. She goes home and he's there with balloons and he tries to put his arm around her. She resists, and he then puts a ring on her left hand as a way to propose to her. I laughed.

Then I thought: "Wait a second. This has been done before in other music videos where a girl isn't getting along with the guy and he surprises her at the end."

Here's Jennifer Hudson's "No One Gonna Love You":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqkt7WIf144

Amerie feat. Fabolous video "More than Love." Amerie is arguing with Fabolous and then at the end, he surprises with a new car. Here's her video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VT6DzbeprA

Keshia Chante's video "Unpredictable." Her boyfriend is acting cold towards her and then he surprises her with a birthday party. Here's her video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ajMM1EPAjY

Original: This is from the LinkedIn writing group Two Bits. The person Les wrote this:

"You're writing a plot that's been done before? So what? There are, according to another book, only 36 plots that ever existed---and when you boil them down, there are really only six or seven.

My twenty-sixth book will be published in November, and I doubt any of my plots are completely original. What IS original is the way I write it. What's original about your work is the way YOU do it."

I feel like this guy gave me permission to like be more easygoing. It's kind of like the above with music videos. It depends on how the guy surprises his girlfriend. He surprises her, but how he does it is unique and original.

Rookie Blue: I was watching the episode called "Might Have Been", and it reminded me a bit of my The Vertex Fighter script. This club has a lot of drug complaints. It was run by the club owner Patrick Murphy who was an ex-cop and gets along with the other officers. He was the same actor who played a British actor on the Toronto shot show The Best Years and an ep of Flashpoint.

The undercover cops are Andy and Gail who are waitresses at the club. They wear sexy black dresses. I can relate to the servers working since I work at a restaurant. It turns out the Woman Bartender did it as Andy overhears her talking to her Boyfriend about a drug shipment.

Later the Boyfriend shows up, and he starts arguing with the Woman Bartender and Andy. B points gun at Andy. Gun shots are fired and you think Andy got shot- again. She got shot last episode, but was wearing a bullet proof vest. I and the characters jumped at the gun shots. It turns out Patrick Murphy shot the Boyfriend who was waving the gun around. Good psych. The case is solved when it turns out Patrick was an ex-cop, so he has drug connections. He shot the Boyfriend who was the only guy who could tell the cops that Patrick is the one who was responsible for the whole drug trade.

There are other subplots like the rookie Traci who gets closer to Det. Barber as they're in surveillance outside the club. The rookie Doug deals with a domestic violence case and warned the girlfriend about her boyfriend's violent past.

On a side note, they mentioned Montreal so the show isn't really just set in some generic city.

Antitrust: I was thinking about computer movies, and then Antitrust popped into my head. It stars Ryan Phillipe who is a computer programmer. He gets a job at a corporation, and the boss does ruthless things to keep his business on top. It came out in 2001.

I rented this movie back in 2002 and watched it with Leslie. I thought the movie was average. There was some good suspense on who to trust and how to protect yourself from the bad guy. I remember this part in it:

Good guy: Type in the first number.
Bad guy does the same.
Good guy: They got it. Let's type in the second number.
Leslie: Type in the last number.
Bad guy types the second number.
Good guy: They got it. Let's type in the last number.

Well looks like Leslie's smart and predicted that one. lol.

Scary movies: I was watching Criminal Minds ep "The Stranger." The characters have watched a scary movie.

Dr. Reid: Do you know why horror movies are so successful? Because they prey on our instinctual need to survive. The best part in a horror movie is you never know when the end is going to come.

I thought: "That's like life, you don't know when the end is going to come." Then I thought about the horror movie Darkness. I didn't really predict the ending, but the whole movie was scary.

The Bourne Ultimatum: I saw this movie again last week. I forgot I watched it, but then I remembered it as I was watching it. I borrowed it from the library back in 2008. I had to type into my blog to see if I wrote about it and I did. Now that I saw it the second time, I have some new notes about it.

There is good exposition in the beginning as the CIA and characters talk about what happened in the last two films like it was a review. (Spoiler alert, skip this next line and go to the next paragraph.) Bourne tells his girlfriend's brother that his girlfriend is dead.

Bourne could have shot someone, but didn't because he was unarmed. Though the bad guy was chasing after him, the bad guy was badly injured and can't move. B didn't shoot him to show that he's a sympathetic character.

Strike: I was watching The Simpsons episode where the teachers go on strike.

Lisa: When employees go on strike, they incite change and can be more happier and productive at work.
Me: That's right.

Homer: If you don't like your job, you don't go on strike. You keep going in everyday, and do it really half- ass. That's the American way.
Me: That's right.

They both have a point, it really depends on what kind of person you are to do what action. If your job is really bad, and you have been pushed to the limit, then go on strike. If it's a mediocre job, then do it half- ass.

There was a clip where the bully Jimbo Jones is watching a soap opera with his mom during the strike. I forgot about that scene, and I don't remember ever seeing his mom on the show before.

Flashback: I remember the teacher's strike back in 2002. I watched Jerry Springer, and then I got really angry, and managed to quit. That's weird because it was really hard for me to quit Dr. Phil and Maury. Probably because Springer seems so fake, the guests seems like actors. I know with Dr. Phil and Maury, they're real people.

Jul. 10 Job news: I was talking to my dad about an article in the newspaper about a woman who was running out of job benefits. She used to be an administrative assistant who made $70,000 a yr and she's 56. She passed out over 1000 resumes. My dad said it's hard for her because she's old and won't be hired because she will most likely retire after a few years of working there. The companies don't want to hire her if she will leave later.

I don't know about her, but she will most likely not be able to find a job that pays as much as she used to be. She may have to settle for a job that's like $35,000 a yr. Right now, she should take any job she can get.

In the US the unemployment is really high, as for Canada it's improving and faring well.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

voice/ rant/ blog

Jul. 4 Voice: I had this bad cough for a few days and it made my voice sound very raspy and hoarse. In 2009, I had a cold and my sister said my voice: "You sound like death." This time, she says: "You only like talking like this because you sound like that teenager on The Simpsons."

You know the awkward teenager with acne and that hoarse voice? He shows up working at Krusty Burger, the movie theatre, and that army base episode where Sideshow Bob was going to blow up the whole town. Yeah, that guy. Now my voice is back tomorrow.

Funny sport videos: This was like last year, but Jay Leno showed these funny videos. One of dancers from the winning group Kwest Crew from America's Best Dance Crew was on. He showed this video clip of him doing a head spinning break dance move at a bowling alley. He then rolled the bowling ball and made a strike. Camera pan to the Kwest Crew and they're cheering and laughing.

Another video clip was this Mexican guy who slam dunked the basketball right through the hoop, and his leg also got stuck in the basketball hoop. He was hanging onto the basketball hoop as people ran up to him and pulled out their cell phones and took pictures of this funny moment. A guy came running with a ladder though to help him down.

Cut to a black baseball player in the baseball field. He is running to catch the ball, and runs right through the stadium wall. I didn't expect that. lol.

30 Rock: There was an episode where they made fun of reality shows. That totally reminds me of how back in 2001 I did write something like that. I was doing a parody of The Real World and Making the Band. They had the characters talking to a camera, and the subtitle of who it is. I did that in my script.

When the characters are whispering, there were subtitles underneath it, just like a real reality show. That was good, I didn't do that in my script because I didn't think of that.

Dark jokes: The episode was called "Queen of Jordan" , about Tracy Jordan's wife. They made a dark joke where Jenna created a website called Jenna-side.com. Say it out loud: genocide. That was creative, but dark.

They made another dark joke where Susan Sarandon plays a teacher named Angie. She had a relationship with one of her jr. high students. Her subtitle when talking to the camera was: "Educator/ sex offender."

Bad teachers: I'll add Susan Sarandon teacher role from 30 Rock to my "Bad teachers are funny" file. I also want to add Jack Black's character from School of Rock. He was a bad teacher, but then becomes a good teacher later on. Initially he was bad, like in this scene.

Girl: Are we going to learn anything?
JB: Do whatever you want.
Girl: I want to be taught by my teacher.
JB: Besides that.

News: I got this on Yahoo News about excessive spending by the rich. I did learn something from this line:

"Real incomes have been 'pretty much flat for most people for 30 years but the level of consumption keeps rising,' says Naylor, author of Crass Struggle: Greed, Glitz and Gluttony in a Wanna-Have World."

http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/McGill-University-professor-capress-2746148707.html?x=0&mod=pf-sp14b

Rant: After I read the article, this guy BEJAN has this rant about what's wrong with our world. It's actually a pretty smart rant that makes you think about our values. At least that's what I thought.

BEJAN: "The Capitalism system is just a big bullsh*t !! They sell to the hungry people a big illusion, making them to dream that they can become rich one day,like the few others,maybe 0,0001% of the total population of the world..Like 'The American Dream' , they sell u tickets to the 100 million jackpot draw Lottery,which is the biggest Government scam of the millennium, they bury u in debt with credit cards, mortgages, leasing, which u will never be able to cover,they show u 24hours/day at the TV the glamorous Hollywood's rich idiots and drug addicted and degenerated 'stars' life to frustrate u more and more and to put u to buy 2000$ purse ,

1 million wood and paper worthless house,or 100000$ watch ,like the @#$% Brad Pitt or drug addicted Ange Jolie, they give u just cheap junk 'KFC, Tim Hortons,Mac' junk cancer food and circus like 'UFC fights,baseball,soccer' and at the end of the day,u are just a tired and sick 'robot' and broke slave of the system, without a family or real friends, with no personal life,sad and fat !!!! This is the FAKE Capitalism New World Order !!!"

Jul. 5 Blog: On my The Vertex Fighter blog, I decided to add a description at the top of it so people would know what the purpose of the website is about:

"I'm Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. This blog is used to promote this TV movie The Vertex Fighter. If the ratings are good, it could be turned into a back door pilot. It's used to attract producers, directors, investors, cast, and crew who want to be part of this project. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so it’s also used to attract the same people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie."

On my www.badcb.blogspot.com, the top is this:

"I’m Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so this blog is used to promote my writing and attract people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie. I write a lot about writing, TV, movies, jokes, and my daily life and opinions. I have another blog promoting my TV project at www.thevertexfighter.blogspot.com ."

The whole point of both these blogs is to promote myself, my writing, and my script.

Jul. 6: I emailed the producer John Kerr and Writer in Residence Marty Chan about my The Vertex Fighter blog. I then emailed MC The Vertex Fighter Part 3 and Part 4, because he hasn't read it. JK emailed me back saying he liked the blog.

Actors: I read in the newspaper that Larisa Oleynik was going to be on Hawaii 5.0. She played Alex on The Secret World of Alex Mack. I loved that show. She was also the little sister Bianca in the movie 10 Things I Hate about You. She looked really different on Hawaii. She had a really short haircut, and she wore glasses. Her voice is still the same.

Did you know Jessica Alba was on Alex Mack in the first season? She was the mean girl Jessica and her voice is the same.

Jul. 7 Internet: It was kind of crazy today. I turned on the computer at 1:15pm, and the internet wasn't working so I was like: "I'll go wash my hair and come back later." I turn the computer on at 2:30pm and it still wasn't working so I called the internet service. I was put on hold for 30min and waited while reading the newspaper.

I hear the instrumental version of Toni Braxton's "Unbreak my Heart." That's a good song. I also remember a scene from In Plain Sight where Brandy was put on hold and then she said: "Thanks, can you put me back on hold so I can listen to the rest of the song?"

The tech support guy helped me with plugging and unplugging the wires. Then I thought: "I should have tried that before I called. I forgot." I connected the wires to different places. I was doing something productive by reading the newspaper though instead of figuring out the wires earlier. Then he said the computer has a problem, and not the service. Then we hung up.

But then I reconnected it back to the right places, and the internet works. So everything's cool.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

writing/ Flashpoint/ inspiration

Jul. 1 Writing: I have joined this writing group on LinkedIn called "Two Bits" about writers giving other writers advice. One person said: "I have a friend who read the The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck and thought JS had written everything that was needed to be said, and there's nothing else to write about."

I can never stop writing like my blog. There will always be something in the news that I want to discuss, or a funny joke I saw on TV and have to tell someone about it.

Jul. 2 Flashpoint: I have writer's block, so I must go back. Let's think about that Flashpoint episode I saw back in Jan. 2011. The ep was called "No Promises." After I saw it, it made me spend 4 hrs on Rain.

In it, 2 young men got arrested and one had been shot in the arm. The man who's been shot in the arm, he works for his uncle who's a mob boss. The Cop who arrested the two men, then gets into a car accident, on purpose. The cop and the two men then get another car. The Cop is one of the SRU's member Spike's training officer. At the beginning, Cop taught Spike to "Never make promises."

You think Cop was dirty because he's helping these criminals. He isn't. He works for Mob Boss to pay for wife's treatment, but she died. He gets money to put daughter into rehab. The audience may think: "Yeah, well that's still not enough to make him a sympathetic character to be a dirty cop." If that isn't enough, then there's another twist.

The Mob Boss has taken a Cop's daughter in exchange for his nephew. So now Cop has to help these two criminals. SRU team figures out Cop's motive, and then they help him. However, Cop gets shot and as he's laying there bleeding out, he is talking to Spike.

Cop: Take care of my daughter Leslie. Promise.
Spike: I promise.

That episode was so good.

Inspiration: I was looking for writing inspiration by reading that LinkedIn writing forum. Here's a person Les who said this to "So what do you do when everything else you read deflates your confidence in yourself?":

Les: Jack, why would you let ANYONE---to say nothing of someone's book---deflate your self-confidence? Van Gogh made only fifty bucks for a painting during his entire life; don't let his suicide because of it slow you down. "The Silence of the Lambs" was rejected by more than twenty NYC publishers before it became one of the all-time great suspense novels and films. You're writing a plot that's been done before? So what? There are, according to another book, only 36 plots that ever existed---and when you boil them down, there are really only six or seven.

My twenty-sixth book will be published in November, and I doubt any of my plots are completely original. What IS original is the way I write it. What's original about your work is the way YOU do it. You're not going to be a Scott FItzgerald, a John Steinbeck, a Charles DIckens, a Leo Tolstoy---so forget about it. You're not going to be a ME, either, nor a Janice Richards nor a Debbi Weitzell (whose answer to you is absolutely terrific). You might be better than every writer who ever lived, or you might not, but that's not what's important. Be YOU---that's what you do better than anyone. And be the very BEST Jack Mulcahy you know how to be!"

Jul. 3 Post Secret: I was reading this email on postsecret.com. It was about a girl who met a guy through it. Here it is:

"When my plane finally landed in Philadelphia I was giddy to get off and was ready to see my guy. I walk out of the concourse and see him waiting for me, holding a sign with my name on it, just as I had done for him a few years previous... except Dominic then flipped the sign over, and written on the other side was 'Will you Marry Me?'.

We've set our wedding for October 2012. I had no idea when I joined PostSecret Community that I would find the man that I was going to marry. We both credit the honesty, vulnerability, and trust we had for each other upon meeting to PostSecret."

Blog: Earlier I had mentioned that I have 140 comments on my blog and 50 of it's spam. I really looked over the comments, and it's more like 100 of it is spam.

Today I thought my Vertex Fighter blog was too visually dark, because the background is completely black. I was then looking at background pictures, and it does make me be more creative. By exposing myself to new images, it makes me think outside of the box.

Well it did get new ideas running through my head. I like this background of doodles on a paper, but it looks like that would fit a teenage girl's blog, than my action movie. I like this background of rubber ducks, baby carriages, and baby bottles, but that looks like a stay-at-home mom's blog.

This picture of tomatoes looks good, but it could be used for a foodie or farmer's blog. These lights look like it would fit for some city person's blog and who reviews restaurants and clubs. This wedding cake would be perfect for a wedding blog.

I looked at all of the backgrounds and finally settled on one that is on a film set. It has lights and wires. It kind of inspires me. I may change it later, but I like it.

Jul. 4: My friend Michelle has her background with cute pandas and bamboo. It's very cute and it fits her style.

Shopping tip: Way back in 2000, my sister said that if I buy headphones, and the salesperson ask: "Do you want to buy the warranty?" Like if your headphones break within 2 yrs, you will get two free replacements. She says don't, because if they don't break then they have pocketed your warranty money.

However, in my case, you should buy the warranty if you use your headphones nearly everyday. It's bound to wear and tear. Even if you take care of it, it can break with daily use. That's what I did today, exchange my headphones for a free pair. Remember to keep the receipt.

Manners: My sister says I need to work on my phone manners, and my friends Angela and Leslie have said that too. However, I am aware of it. One time I was watching The Mentalist, and this man calls my house and asks to speak to my grandma.

Me: She's here, but she doesn't speak English.
Man: Yeah, well I'm calling on behalf of the Conservative govt.-
Me: You want money?
Man is taken aback.
Man: Yes.
Me: Well I can't really donate any money to you right now. Okay, bye.

Yeah, I know was being abrupt there. If it was a charity like the Alberta Cancer Research foundation called for money, I would have listened to their spiel, and then say I can't donate money. It's the Conservative govt. asking for money for their campaign. That's not a very important cause and the TV was on. I might as well cut to the chase.

Job link: I think I got this through Job Boom.com. It's called "Six Free Ways to learn Job Skills" like use Youtube and your library card to learn new things.

http://lifewise.canoe.ca/Investopedia/2011/05/11/18133726.html

Sunday, July 3, 2011

fun/ friends/ chain reaction

June 29 Fun: Today I went to a job interview today and it was okay. I was told there were 30 applicants.

The fun part was that afterwards, I went to this place called Ascendant Books. It sells books, stones, jewelery, incense, magnets, cds, and home decor. It's kind of like a New Age store but it kind of reminds me of Carlton Cards. Both stores sell stuffed animals, cards, and gifts. You should check it out. Here's their website:

http://www.ascendantbooks.com/books.html

Psychic: In the back of the store, I met Barb Cote who is a spiritual advisor. I got good vibes from her.

Me: When are you here?
BC: Wed. and Sun.
Me: Do you go to the Russian Tea Room?
BC: No, most of them are fortune tellers, and I'm a spiritual advisor.

She was sitting at this small table and had two decks of fortune telling cards. If I remember reading her rates, it's $40 for a 30min. reading.

Here's her website. There is a section of her favorite quotes, sketches, blog, etc.

http://www.barbcote.com/

Writing: Today I finally got an email from the Writer in Residence Marty Chan. He has read another 10 pages to my Rain script that I sent him 2 months ago. He pointed out my inconsistencies to my characters, and it was helpful. I then rewrote in a way to add more tension and drama.

June 30 Dream: I had this dream last night where I was in/ watching Channing Tatum in this movie. CT plays a mythological hero in present time. Then it reminded me of these comparisons.

Comparisons: This is a more "fish out of water" take on stories. One can be realistic like The OC about a poor young man from the ghetto moves into the wealthy neighborhood of Orange County. Or a supernatural take on it.

Regular guy in mythological world: There's Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightening Thief." I didn't even think about that movie when I had that dream. I remember reading a review in See or Vue magazine (paraphrase): "Percy has dyslexia and ADHD. It turns out he's a descendant of a Greek God and he's really supposed to be able to read Greek letters and he doesn't really have ADHD, he just can't sit still because it's in his DNA to go and fight. Only an American movie can make learning disabilities into a good thing." Interesting note.

Mythological hero in our world: Then there's Thor, where a warrior from a different world has to live with humans.

Hackers: My friend Sherry emailed me saying there's a hacker movie called Swordfish. I forgot about that. I told Marty Chan about hackers, and he said: "...be careful of going down the road of the Stieg Larsson road (ie. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo). You don’t want to copy the hacker character from that novel series."

Damn it. That's the thing: I watch TV and then I say: "Oh that's been done before on this show." Now I'm seeing things in my dreams, and people are pointing things out. Even when I write something, afterwards I will read it and be like: "Hey, this has been done before."

The old guy/ mentor dies: I was writing where this happens, and then I was like: "This happened in a Jet Li movie and a Chow Yun Fat movie." I won't tell you which ones, unless you want to know. If you don't want to be spoiled skip the next line and go to the next topic.

Jet Li's Kiss of the Dragon, and Chow Yun Fat's Bulletproof Monk.

Jul. 1 Friends: I was talking to my friend and how I could have prevented her from dropping out of high school. It wasn't until this yr I imagined: "What if every morning before school starts, I walk to her house and go to her room and say: 'Get out of bed and go to school!'"

She would then say: "Tracy, get out of my room." lol. I thought about it some more, and: "Who would even let me into the house?" No one would open the door. I could bang and ring the doorbell for 10min. until 8:10 am before I had to stop and start walking to school to be on time. My friend would either sleep right through my noise, and/ or ignore it, knowing that I would stop by 8:10am. I could do this for a few months, and she wouldn't answer the door and go to school.

I guess I'm writing this is that, it eases my guilt. I wouldn't have helped her graduate out of school by helping with her homework, because I'm not good in school. But what if I forced her to go to school everyday, would she have graduated? She told me she wouldn't answer the door if I did that, so things are out of my control. Sometimes you can't help people.

Saying: Here's a saying I created: "There's a difference between being optimistic and delusional."

This was based from my high school experience. Gr. 10 was the easiest year for me. I was in the low classes and didn't have to work hard, study, or really pay attention in class and I passed. The expectations were low. Then in gr. 11, it was harder. English and Social were easy, but Applied Math 20 and Science 10 was really hard for me. I thought I could probably do the exact same thing last yr and not work hard, and still pass.

I was delusional. I had to work extremely hard, study, pay attention in class, and have my sister tutor me for hours to pass. I didn't work because I was stupid and lazy. I also felt: "What's the point? I work hard, and I barely pass or even fail. Why bother trying?" But I worked hard and it paid off since I passed my classes. I didn't think it was possible.

Dad's saying: My dad said this: "Once you get an office job, you will be able to get enough money to live on your own. You will be able to support yourself by paying rent and groceries. Everything else will fall into place."

I would say, once I passed gr. 11 math and science classes, everything else fell into place. Gr. 11 was the most depressing time of my life. After I passed the classes, there were a lot of obstacles in my life, but I did overcome it. I graduated out of high school within the 3 yrs though I failed Bio 30. I had to spend an extra year to upgrade my marks before I could even apply to college, but I did end up going to college. Though NAIT didn't work out and I didn't graduate after that 1 yr.

Chain reaction: On Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, there was a line: "These little ripples become waves." Imagine my school situation like knocking over dominoes which is a chain reaction.

However, falling dominoes is a lot faster. In my case, it's more like knock one domino of passing gr. 11. Then it stops. Graduate out of gr. 12. Knock one domino. Yeah, it's much slower. I can only knock one domino at one time. I have a picture in my room that I got from a University of Alberta open house. It's a picture of dominoes and it says: "To begin, begin."

Disability: I got this flashback of Jerry Springer way back in like 1994. It wasn't as trashy back then. It was about a woman who didn't have any arms or legs, they were stubs. She had a baby and raises it as her own. The baby had all his limbs, fingers, and toes. They showed footage of her feeding and playing with the baby with her stubs of her arms.

The show was trashy as she, her husband, and her family all argue with one another about how her husband's ex-gf is sending naked pictures of herself to him. However, there was no physical fighting that security guards need to break it up like in the newer episodes.