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Old 11-27-2001, 07:14 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anthony:
I for one don't really consider Melon's comments at all that arrogant or self-praising. At the end of the day, we are all exceedingly arrogant in our little (or in my case, GRAND) ways. If he is being arrogant, which I doubt, then thats good for him; he has the guts to admit to such arrogance and promote it. Before we can be acquainted with virtue, we must be acquainted with vice... I think the Marquis de Sade said that once. Anyway, I digress.
Excellently stated. You now join the illustrious list of melon's favorite people on the forum. And you live in one of my favorite cities, London. A very fun time I had there this summer. Seeing you also like literature (as stated in your profile), have you ever heard of / read Hanif Kureishi? My favorite British author of late.

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Hehe, I have a long history involving me irritating priests to the point where they reccomend my family to have my first holy communion somewhere else. Spending the first years of my life in a Nun's school and then a formal Catholic School didn't do wonders for my faith. Oh, I do believe in God, I just don't believe in all the paperwork surrounding him. ie - religion.
Hehe...I was in second grade, and I acted up to the point that the nun who taught me wanted to drug me up on Ritalin (which never happened) and recommended I not get my First Communion with my class. We later found out that she was psycho and systematically singled out the smartest student out of all of her classes. All that fasting must have withered her brain chemistry.

Late in high school, I was the argumentative one, pointing out contradictions and openly stated why I thought some traditions were stupid. Luckily, perhaps, this teacher was open-minded, and, funny enough, purposely took on more conservative standpoints just to make me more irate.

The rest....well, I've stated most of my religious radicalism on this board. Overall, I am increasingly abandoning ritualism in favor of spiritualism, but in an ever evolving capacity.

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Melon, what do you believe in?
Man...this is the perhaps the broadest question one can ask me. Here's a short consensus, but if you want something more specific, ask:

* Love is the only law.
* The world is not black-and-white, but full of gradients.
* The worst evil is the one disguised in righteousness.
* Everyone has a right to happiness.
* Unchallenged beliefs systems are dangerous.
* People are inherently good.
* The greater the power one has to be good, the greater the power one has to be evil. One cannot have one ability without the other; otherwise, they don't have free will.

As for your "on [topic];" statements, I really couldn't agree more. Regarding "on WHETHER ITS BETTER TO GO WITH A BANG OR FADE AWAY," I really don't know what I'd want. Sometimes I want that feeling like I've hit the Buddhist idea of nirvana; that everything I've struggled over had a purpose, that all the pieces of the puzzle that I collected in my life finally made sense. In that regard, I guess I'd love the idea of fading away, knowing, at least for myself, that I solved everything I was meant to solve.

Great posts, Ant.

Melon

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"He had lived through an age when men and women with energy and ruthlessness but without much ability or persistence excelled. And even though most of them had gone under, their ignorance had confused Roy, making him wonder whether the things he had striven to learn, and thought of as 'culture,' were irrelevant. Everything was supposed to be the same: commercials, Beethoven's late quartets, pop records, shopfronts, Freud, multi-coloured hair. Greatness, comparison, value, depth: gone, gone, gone. Anything could give some pleasure; he saw that. But not everything provided the sustenance of a deeper understanding." - Hanif Kureishi, Love in a Blue Time
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Old 11-27-2001, 08:09 PM   #47
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never mind

[This message has been edited by mug222 (edited 11-27-2001).]
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Old 11-27-2001, 09:25 PM   #48
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Melon, Hanif Kureishi is not only one of my all time favourites (ever since I saw 'My Beautiful Launderette', I've been reading everything I could get a hold of, he's pretty huge in his native Britain) but I have also met him.

Well, not actually met him, but he did a lecture at my University a long time ago, before I even considered joining. An older friend of mine (she was actually my girl-friend at the time) knew that he was going to show up, and, knowing that he was one of my favourite authours (at the time he was THE favourite)out of the blue she invited me to her University for a day. I had no interest of going, and thought there was some catch to it, so imagine the surprise I got when I saw him at her lecture (she was studying Literature and Culture at the time). This was a good two years ago, but I can still remember him (more than my actual ex-girlfriend!)

However, I am ashamed to say that I've never read his collection of short stories; 'Love in a Blue Time', despite the fact that your quote is heart-breakingly gorgeous.

Were you in London when U2 were in town? Did you go to Earl's Court?

Ant.
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Old 11-27-2001, 09:43 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anthony:
Melon, Hanif Kureishi is not only one of my all time favourites (ever since I saw 'My Beautiful Launderette', I've been reading everything I could get a hold of, he's pretty huge in his native Britain) but I have also met him.
Cool! I met him too actually. He was a guest speaker of our film group (about 25 of us) at the BFI. We had seen the film adaptation of "Intimacy," which I think does little justice to the novel, earlier, and, actually, we saw "My Beautiful Laundrette" as he was there. I was a bit tired that day, as I actually was like 10 minutes late, having just arrived from a weekend foray from Paris, but I made sure to bring the two books of his I owned at the time, "Intimacy," and his latest, "Gabriel's Gift," as I definitely wanted him to sign them, and I successfully got him to sign them.

Originally, I thought I was gonna fall asleep during the film, not because I wouldn't like it, but from exhaustion from Paris. Luckily, the plot kept me awake.

But I liked him a lot. Kureishi reminded me a lot of myself really with his thought processes, so it was all the more reason I liked him.

Quote:
However, I am ashamed to say that I've never read his collection of short stories; 'Love in a Blue Time', despite the fact that your quote is heart-breakingly gorgeous.
I have yet to read it myself. I'm rereading "Intimacy" currently for analyzation sake, and I've got "Midnight All Day" on deck. I was looking for a Hanif Kureishi quote on the internet and found this one, which stuck to me like glue.

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Were you in London when U2 were in town? Did you go to Earl's Court?
I was in Edinburgh at the time actually, for the film festival. I only wished that time would have been a bit more on my side. I left Edinburgh to arrive back to London on August 23rd, and by that time, they had left Earl's Court. I then flew back to America on August 24th, which was one day shy of Slane, so U2 was, pretty much, faraway so close.

But I definitely want to go back. I'm addicted!

Melon

------------------
"He had lived through an age when men and women with energy and ruthlessness but without much ability or persistence excelled. And even though most of them had gone under, their ignorance had confused Roy, making him wonder whether the things he had striven to learn, and thought of as 'culture,' were irrelevant. Everything was supposed to be the same: commercials, Beethoven's late quartets, pop records, shopfronts, Freud, multi-coloured hair. Greatness, comparison, value, depth: gone, gone, gone. Anything could give some pleasure; he saw that. But not everything provided the sustenance of a deeper understanding." - Hanif Kureishi, Love in a Blue Time
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Old 11-27-2001, 09:54 PM   #50
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That truly is amazing, I've never had the fortune of getting any of my novels signed by my favourite authors. Which reminds me, what other authors do you admire?

I do try to read loads, but I am only truly addicted to (as far as novelists are concerned) the works of Umberto Eco, Jostein Gaarder, Louis de Bernieres, Peter Ustinov, Salman Rushdie and Kazuo Ishiguro. What are you studying, since you mentioned that you were analysing Kureishi's work, was this in an academic capacity?

Personally, modern literature has been flooded with so much nonsense, just like cinema. These days, everyone's a writer of some sort (says the aspiring writer who is in the middle of his own manuscript!)

Ant.
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Old 11-28-2001, 11:40 PM   #51
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That truly is amazing, I've never had the fortune of getting any of my novels signed by my favourite authors. Which reminds me, what other authors do you admire?
I really enjoy Salman Rushdie as well. I really loved "The Ground Beneath Her Feet," with all the latent pop cultural allusions all over the book, and, from what I've read in descriptions so far, I want to read, "Fury," as well. However, I find the reviews for it to be incredibly polarized, so it does make me wonder if I'll like it, but I have a feeling I will.

I also enjoyed Irvine Welsh for a while. I'm great at reading through the vernacular language now, and "Trainspotting" was a delight for me. One problem with Welsh is that he can get somewhat repetitive, but that doesn't bother me as much as his incredibly hacked endings, which almost seem slapped together for needless shock value, and, as a result, become incredibly anti-climactic. This ending problem was a huge problem for me with "Marabou Stork Nightmares," which was very interesting and well-written for the most part, but I was very disappointed with the ending.

But I don't know too many other authors, honestly, as I spent from about 12 to 19 reading mostly biographies, as I am a history geek somewhat. I read two books on Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, one on Joseph Stalin, and one on Adolf Hitler. Heh...I hope that isn't weird. I wanted to understand the minds of the most vicious dictators of the twentieth century in regards to Stalin and Hitler. Regardless of the controversial figures, they were incredibly interesting reads.

Quote:
I do try to read loads, but I am only truly addicted to (as far as novelists are concerned) the works of Umberto Eco, Jostein Gaarder, Louis de Bernieres, Peter Ustinov, Salman Rushdie and Kazuo Ishiguro. What are you studying, since you mentioned that you were analysing Kureishi's work, was this in an academic capacity?
Any books you personally recommend? I'm up for more reading, and definitely more authors to my list. I tend to like more modern authors, but any suggestion is welcome.

I was studying "Intimacy" on my own, really, because I wanted to see how I would have changed the film version that I personally found a bit disappointing, because of severe emotional detachment and gratuitious nature of the film, which really was in stark contrast to the novel, which was more of an internal emotional struggle. Plus, I really just liked it, so I wanted to reread it.

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Personally, modern literature has been flooded with so much nonsense, just like cinema. These days, everyone's a writer of some sort (says the aspiring writer who is in the middle of his own manuscript!)


Heh...I really would like to write myself again, but I overburdened myself with schoolwork. Personally, I like writing screenplays, and I've been told they were quite good by some people. If I could somehow get them to be produced, I would be quite happy. However, I also really want to write at least one novel before I die. I used to write prolifically before I took on my interests in video and web design in college. But time, unfortunately, seems quite limited.

Hope I'm not prodding (and forgive me if I am), but what part of London are you in? I still have the tube map somewhat memorized.

Melon

------------------
"He had lived through an age when men and women with energy and ruthlessness but without much ability or persistence excelled. And even though most of them had gone under, their ignorance had confused Roy, making him wonder whether the things he had striven to learn, and thought of as 'culture,' were irrelevant. Everything was supposed to be the same: commercials, Beethoven's late quartets, pop records, shopfronts, Freud, multi-coloured hair. Greatness, comparison, value, depth: gone, gone, gone. Anything could give some pleasure; he saw that. But not everything provided the sustenance of a deeper understanding." - Hanif Kureishi, Love in a Blue Time
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Old 11-29-2001, 09:20 AM   #52
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Not at all. I assume that you visited the West End of London, which, everyone knows is the best and most interesting part of London.

Well, I live about fifteen minutes away from it in the Burough of Ealing. Remember Ealing? Thats the place where all the IRA nutters attack, probably because of the BBC importance. Actually, I live (on the tube map) in EAST ACTON Station, which is on the Central line (the red one), which is practically next to NOTTING HILL station.

Most of your posts have been really interesting, so tell me when you're next visiting Sunny Blighty and we can have a mind-numbingly painful intellectual chat.

Later,
Ant.
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Old 11-29-2001, 09:31 AM   #53
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As for recommended books...

Well, I don't know, because I don't know what taste you have acquired, though I also DO want to read Salman Rushdie's FURY, despite British Literary Insitutes attacking it constantly (personally, I think they all got fed up with praising him, the man's a genius and the nasty thing about Geniuses is that you have to keep recognising that they're geniuses, and you're not). Have you read his SATANIC VERSES? I thought it was an incredible read, as well as his MOOR'S LAST SIGH, though VERSES is better.

Kazuo Ishiguro is absolutely amazing, subtle yet profound, calm but heart-breaking. Read his REMAINS OF THE DAY if you want a parable of lost love, missed chances and lost causes concerning the pursuit of Politics. Peter Ustinov is also another well-known man for fables, read his THE OLD MAN AND MR.SMITH, a fable that deals with God and Satan coming down to Earth and analysing Modern Society, much to their comic disapproval.

Louis De Bernieres is more mainstream, what with his CAPTAIN CORELLI'S MANDOLIN, which was made into a completely embarassing film, but the book is heartbreakingly wonderful.

Of course, everyone has heard of Jostein Gaarder's SOPHIE'S WORLD? Utterly gripping.
Though, if I had to recommend a book to you, I'd recommend Vladimir Nabokov's LOLITA, an utterly shattering book, however, it is better to read the book without preconceptions. The book is brilliant as it concerns obsession, human frailty and self-destruction.

I don't know if you read Philosophical books as well, but Marcus Aurelius' Meditations is a wonderful read, and most of which I do agree with, though I'm far too angry as a person to be a STOIC. Hehe.

Do you recommend anything? I'm all ears.

ANt.
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Old 11-29-2001, 10:26 PM   #54
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Not at all. I assume that you visited the West End of London, which, everyone knows is the best and most interesting part of London.

Well, I live about fifteen minutes away from it in the Burough of Ealing. Remember Ealing? Thats the place where all the IRA nutters attack, probably because of the BBC importance. Actually, I live (on the tube map) in EAST ACTON Station, which is on the Central line (the red one), which is practically next to NOTTING HILL station.
Yes...Ealing. I remember that place, mostly from the car bombing near Ealing Broadway that happened while I was there. Slightly eerie seeing the CCTV footage of it! I was/am such a news junkie that I used to watch BBC news here and there while I was over there.

I stayed right smack between Queensway and Lancaster Gate stations on the Central line in Craven Hill, adjacent to Hyde Park. BTW, funny you mention the West End being the best. Is there anything to do in the East End?? I was a sucker for Camden Town, Oxford Circus / Tottenham Court, and Covent Garden. I also enjoyed a relaxing time at Holland Park and, funny enough, Royal Oak. For obvious reasons, they were night-and-day.

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Most of your posts have been really interesting, so tell me when you're next visiting Sunny Blighty and we can have a mind-numbingly painful intellectual chat.
Heh..."mind-numbingly painful," eh? I'll likely take you up on that, but I really don't know when I'll be able to amass the amount of cash required to make a trip out there--and London is definitely quite expensive. I remember the food, for one, was twice as expensive and half the portions compared to America. But that's right. Americans are fat and eat too much, yes?

Melon

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"He had lived through an age when men and women with energy and ruthlessness but without much ability or persistence excelled. And even though most of them had gone under, their ignorance had confused Roy, making him wonder whether the things he had striven to learn, and thought of as 'culture,' were irrelevant. Everything was supposed to be the same: commercials, Beethoven's late quartets, pop records, shopfronts, Freud, multi-coloured hair. Greatness, comparison, value, depth: gone, gone, gone. Anything could give some pleasure; he saw that. But not everything provided the sustenance of a deeper understanding." - Hanif Kureishi, Love in a Blue Time
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