Posted in book review, Miscellany

Witching Hour

s-l300The witching hour was nearing to cast its spell on the night under the aegis of Artemis, the goddess of the moon, and the passengers on the last train to East Ventura were inwardly invoking the power of Patience for a high hope for a low heaven – they all just wanted to go home after a hard day’s work, and no more. These aggregates were all bound by the same fate of being held up as hostages to the less practical and more unnecessary delay due to their inapt handling of one unruly passenger on board at Moorpark Station. The force of one unruly passenger carried the aggregates over the edge of their collectively simulated sanity and suspended their precious time to be spent at home. This nightly act of daily drama in the life of a commuter was in fact a repertory regularly put on stage by a company entitled Metrolink. It was performed yet again last night for an hour. Without Applauds, of course.

Since I moved to California last October from New Jersey following the footsteps of the nineteenth century emigrants from the East to the West via mules-driven wagons on the Oregon trail, I have been trying to make myself adjusted to the Californian way of life in every sundry aspect. But the most Promethean challenge to overcome is commuting to and from work via train, and my whole life now seems to be run by train schedules operated by Metrolink, the Southern California’s commuter railway company. It takes about three good hours round trip to and from Union Station in Los Angeles without delays, so basically my free time after work during weekdays is to be spent on the train without much personal time at home in the evening. Let’s say the commuting time is agreeable at will due to my economic activities, but any such delays, including the aforesaid and waiting for an Armtrek train to pass by on the trails for about thirty minutes, are hard to receive my magnanimous understanding. And it seems that the last East Ventura bound train in the evening is set for giving me a series of trials by ordeal that I need not anymore. Woes to those who are already burdened with the yoke of needs.

Call it a commuter’s blues or soliloquy, but whenever I am faced with another ordeal of habitual delay that seems to become part of my Immigrant Song in the Wild West, I think of the following Shakespeare’s quotation tinged with wits and pathos that speaks of our moments in life, such as last night’s episode of “Unruly Passenger at Moorpark Station”.

And so, from hour to hour, we ripe and ripe.
And then, from hour to hour, we rot and rot;
And thereby hangs a tale.

Posted in Miscellany

Sound and Fury – Two


images paris.jpg

She is always waiting, and it seems like it is her forte. Like Clytie yearning for Apollo’s love, Iris pines for love as a sublimation of sensuality that is the union of Eros and Psyche. It is different from the religious sense of Agape love that is of a spiritual element only. Iris knows it all, and she is a student of the Nietzschean school of thought believing love is the surrendering of herself to the other in the consummation of desire so pristine and unadulterated of knowing and understanding of the flesh and the soul of her lover. But the tragedy is that she has read all about it, not experiencing it for real. She lives in the reality of her books and thoughts, and it is there she feels safe and comfy without fear of rejection. So, her world of love dwells in her maiden meditation to fancy-free, giving her imagination free rein to the extreme extent without the violent ends of such violent delights. In her mind’s garden, Iris lets her wild horse run her chariot without the goad because otherwise it would rebel against her order of severely restricted movements, which is unnatural to the beast, and drive her into a high cliff and then push her into fathomless Sea of Shadows.

She seems to speak an infinite deal of nothing, but the feeling of existential Cul-del-sac Iris is having weighs as heavy as the celestial heavens that titan Atlas was holding for eternity. People said, “Beauty is only a skin-deep,” but that’s just a lame, piteous excuse and empty consolation for being unattractive, unwanted, unloved. For that matter, at least Oscar Wilde was honest in saying that a woman’s beauty was a form of genius that needed no explanation because it’s like sunlight. Love looked not with the eyes, but with the mind, so said Shakespeare, but it does not seem so to her.

It is the attractiveness that makes people interested in the soul of the beheld. That’s why Iris wants to go to Aphrodite’s Beach somewhere in Cyprus, where it is believed that the goddess of love Aphrodite used to bathe. For it’s said that a woman in want of fairness will be transformed into beauty if she swims naked alone at the beach with no spectators around. Her fierce desire for fairness attests that all women should be told they are pretty and beautiful, even if they aren’t; they have no other reason than being women. Like a madwoman who has such a seething brain that sees beauty as a paradigm of goodness, Iris dwells on the beauty of life, watching the stars and seeing herself running with them in beauty.

Posted in book review, Film Review

there she goes (BBC drama 2018) – review


Although I am not a parent, I know that parenting is a grand task constant of every age. The ancient Greeks thought that to rear children was a hazardous undertaking and success was won though struggle. In this respect, parenting -like all other our human vicissitudes that life presents to us – can be something of an odyssey packed full of both foreseeable and unforeseeable events tinged with laughs and sighs sailing through thick fogs of uncertainty of the future but with silver-lined clouds of hope for tomorrows. A family is in the vessel of life’s voyage, and they are in for the adventure together as in the Yates of “There She Goes”.

This drama evolves around Rosie Yates, a nine-year old learning-disabled daughter of Emily and Simon and her bright older brother Ben. Rosie is a beautiful girl in appearance, but she still wears a diaper and needs her parents’ help in all things she wants to do, ranging from going to a park to eating pastas, to wearing her clothes, and to combing her hair. Her intention of the will is expressed by raw emotions of crying, shrieking, lying down on a floor (even in public) and laughing. To be brutally honest, Rosie is unbelievably uncontrollable and patently outrageous in her unbridled behaviors as symptoms of chromosomal disorder. Looking at Rosie’s outbursts of frustration, I recollected the image of wild Helen Keller before she met Ms. Sullivan. I could not help but think throughout the whole series of the drama thus: ‘What if Rosie got a teacher like Ms. Sullivan? The Yates were of a middle-class family, and there must be a way Rosie could be like Helen Keller in order that she will be independent of her family’s twenty-four-hour vigilance. It will be beneficent  to both herself and her family.’  But then my wish would be father to the thought because the Yates would not seem to entrust the care of Rosie to any one outside her family.

The drama is based on the real-life experiences of creator Shaun Pye to whom I applaud to the very echo for all that she has taken to raise her daughter. And I also feel for her husband brilliantly played by David Tennent who at first did not want to accept the truth of Rosie’s disability but later turned to be a loving father. In fact, Tennent’s performance excels in portraying a neurotic-looking father who has doubts about Rosie’s betterment but has no doubt about his love of her, his wife, and their son. He does it without a shred of overaction or hyperventilating emotions, which renders the drama a sense of verisimilitude. Parents or not, married or single, this drama shows the truthful and honest portrayal of family on a life’s odyssey bound by love and understanding and patience. If you like a simple drama that portrays the life of ordinary folks without perfect teeth and great hair but with a good storyline and elliptical scripts, this is worth watching.