Saturday, October 2, 2021

Life Blog: October | Asian Film | Zombie Etiquette


Dear Reader,

By the time this blog post reaches you, the calendar will have turned another page, and it will be October. And so it begins... the thing that has infiltrated our lives. It's everywhere, and you won't escape it. By now, most everyone has already chosen sides in a highly controversial topic. You either love it or hate it. You know what I'm talking about.

Pumpkin Spice vs The World.

Yes, it's that time again. I know there are some hardcore pumpkin spice haters out there, but I am not among them. I have already purchased my first bag of Dunkin's Pumpkin Spice coffee, and I emailed my daughter a photo of said bag with the enthusiastic caption, "I'm ready!!!" The response was, "I'm already on my third bag." 

Millennials. So hard to impress.

Every year, my Mom, sister, and I go to an attic sale fundraiser for a church in the area. Nothing is priced, but you don't have to be afraid to ask. Like, I found the hog killin' painting above. I asked how much, and they countered with how much do I think it's worth? I asked if they would be willing to take $10, and she said, "I'd be willing to take $5!" I told her, "You can tell that I totally suck at this negotiating thing." 😹

I really love the painting. When I got home, I opened it up to look for a signature. There isn't one. If there was, it has been cut off, but I don't think it was. Anyway, it is an original, and it's on watercolor paper. I would say that the artist is self-taught. I love the Grandma Moses folk-art style, and it tells a story. There are so many details that were carefully added. It was in excellent shape, and I'm pretty sure that it is fairly recent, not just because of the foam-board, but that it was very clean. I wish I knew the artist's name, but I still love it. I think it belongs in the kitchen (too morbid for the bedroom, and the living room is full), so I have to decide what I'm going to move around to make room for it. The colors are right for the kitchen.

Fun Fact (because the donkey in the picture made me think of it): Did you know that all mules are female? My daughter learned that at the Ag Museum. She officially knows more about livestock than I do. IMO, they should call them femules.

I also lucked up on a box of paint. To lots of people, it was just a wooden box with some contraptions attached (the easel part), and I didn't really need another box. I pulled out the drawer and found it full of oil paint, most of the tubes barely used. The colors all appeared to be artist grade. So, although my niece snatched up a great frame in my style before I had a chance to get to the pictures and frame room, I wasn't too upset. Then we all went to eat at the buffet that serves southern fried food and barbecue. It was my sister and niece's first time at Mama Hamil's, but my daughter informed them that it was going to be the best day of their lives. It was a good time for everyone.

Along that same line, Dad sent me a photo of the chickens we gave him for Father's Day. Hey, that's what he wanted. :) He wanted a special breed, so we had to mail order them. They came from Missouri, so I told Dad they were "show me" chickens. The woman at the post office was so excited about them when we went to pick them up. She said it wasn't the first time livestock had come through the mail. Out of the 15 chickens we bought Dad, he ended up with THREE hens. What are the odds?

I was wanting to talk about movies in this post. So, I recently finished watching Kingdom on Netflix. It's a Korean zombie movie, and it's dubbed over if you don't like reading subtitles. I watch with subtitles on all the time because I tend to be slow of hearing, and people talk too fast, or the movie volume range is too dynamic to catch every word without blasting every house on the block. I first fell in love with Asian films with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. After that came House of Flying Daggers and Memoirs of a Geisha. So, subtitles don't bother me at all. I have watched many foreign movies from other countries, both dubbed and subtitled. I love the romance, the choreography, and the emotion of the films.

It's not my first zombie movie. However, the problem I have with zombies is that they're like those people who get something off the buffet, take a bite, and then go back for more. (FYI, I only made one trip to the buffet, and my plate was not spilling over.) If zombies cleaned their plates, there would be no zombie apocalypse, because the would-be zombie would be digested and unable to rise as a zombie. Food generally doesn't come back to life after it's been eaten. It doesn't seem logical that they would take down one person, have their food on the ground before them, but jump right back up and run after another dish like they have zombie ADHD. If you're really craving food, you'll eat what's lying still in front of you. In wildlife documentaries, when a lion takes down a gazelle, they stay with the kill. They don't try to see how many more they can remove from the herd. They don't have freezers or Ziploc bags for food storage. In some movies, they have the monsters evolving and getting smarter, but this disrespect for food is completely self-defeating since growing numbers of people not being eaten is resulting in more zombies and lack of food sources. It just seems like, if they knew enough to be able to hunt a human, then they would have the ability to work this out: uneaten food becomes another zombie competing for your food. So, IMO, it seems that any zombie apocalypse is simply a result of bad table manners.

For some reason, watching shows like this is oddly comforting. For one thing, the setting was over 400 years ago, which means we survived. :) For another, it makes you appreciate that you don't have to get busy chopping trees and constructing a zombie defense system. At the same time, I was a tad disappointed in the ending of the show. There was a glimpse of "life after" with the main characters, which was somewhat satisfying, and a hint of trouble to come, despite the otherwise idealistic ending. It is just two seasons with about six episodes each. The episodes are less than an hour long, so it's not a very long show at all.

I did like the way the story flowed for the series. You had good characters and devious characters, and there was a bit of "Game of Thrones" type of political drama thrown in. It's one of the few zombie shows with a setting that takes place at some point in the past, which adds a certain amount of glamour and romantic nostalgia that modern-day zombie movies and series miss out on with their technology and excess junk. It was a very enjoyable series, and, although it was thrilling, it wasn't scary. If you like Zombie movies, you should check it out.

In non-zombie viewing but still Asian film, I also watched The Yin-Yang Master and The Yin-Yang Master: Dream of Eternity. The two movies were released around the same time (I believe for the Chinese New Year) and are based on the same character, but they include different actors and have different plots. Although the former had cute CGI animal characters that were very well done, the story didn't flow as well. The characters were thinly developed, and there was a disconnect for me there. The latter movie had intriguing characters with a really good mystery that the viewer could speculate on. The characters were strongly developed and likable. The CGI was great, and both shows had beautiful settings and costumes.

We're in the downhill part of the year. It will be 2022 before you can turn around. From October on, the weekends rush by with one event after the other, and there is little time to just be. But I hope to take things slower this year. Y'all take care.

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