A few favorite Bible verses and Rudy

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed Spirit dries up the bones.

Proverbs 17:22

His loved ones are very precious to Him. He does not lightly let them die.

Psalm 116:15

And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:19

When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.

Luke 11:24-26

No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead he puts it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light. Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are good, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are bad, your body also is full of darkness. See to it, then, that the light within you is not darkness. Therefore, if your whole body is full of light, and no part of it dark, it will be completely lighted, as when the light of a lamp shines on you.

Luke 11:33-36

Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. He is my loving God and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me.  O Lord, what is man that you care for him, the son of man that you think of him?  Man is like a breath; his days are like a fleeting shadow. Part your heavens, O Lord, and come down; touch the mountains, so that they smoke.  Send forth lightning and scatter the enemies; shoot your arrows and rout them. Reach down your hand from on high; deliver me and rescue me from the mighty waters, from the hands of foreigners whose mouths are full of lies, whose right hands are deceitful. I will sing a new song to you, O God; on the ten-stringed lyre I will make music to you, to the One who gives a victory to kings, who delivers his servant David from the deadly sword. Deliver me and rescue me from the hands of foreigners whose mouths are full of lies, whose right hands are deceitful.  Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace. Our barns will be filled with every kind of provision. Our sheep will increase by thousands, by tens of thousands in our fields; our oxen will draw heavy loads. There will be no breaching of walls, no going into captivity, no cry of distress in our streets. Blessed are the people of who this is true; blessed are the people whose God is the Lord.

Psalm 144

Rudy: Maybe I haven’t prayed enough.

Father Cavanaugh: I don’t think that’s the problem. Praying is something we do in our time, the answers come in God’s time.

Rudy: If I’ve done everything I possibly can, can you help me?

Father Cavanaugh: Son, in thirty-five years of religious study, I’ve come up with only two hard, incontrovertible facts; there is a God, and, I’m not Him.

Sean Astin and Robert Prosky in Rudy

Why men should watch “Pretty Woman”

I haven’t written for a while, but I’ve been thinking a bunch and journaling some. I started adding to my memoir and have a lot more I will have to sift thru and fill in where appropriate. I was going to write a blog about why a guy in my Sunday school class should watch “Pretty Woman.” It turns out he has seen it, he just doesn’t like it and he thinks that Julia Roberts is a terrible actress. This is from the guy who’s leading a Star Wars and Empire Strikes Back series of lessons, and who brought us the Simpsons lesson when I first joined the class. I love my church, but I digress. So, here are 28 reasons why a guy should watch “Pretty Woman.”

He’d learn about etiquette.

He’d learn about well laid plans and Murphy’s Law.

He’d learn how to operate opera glasses.

He’d see how to plan a date night.

He’d learn about popping a squat.

He’d learn about fairy tales.

He’d learn the oldest profession of women throughout history and back to biblical times.

He’d learn why women are better drivers of some stick shifts and how long your foot is in relation to your wrist and elbow.

He’d see Julia Roberts get a shiner.

He’d see my favorite color (coral).

He’d learn about polo.

He’d appreciate why pok-a-dots were in style when I was in high school.

He’d learn about the art of negotiations.

He’d get to watch “I Love Lucy” reruns.

It’s like watching “The Sure Thing.”

He’d learn about insomnia.

He’d know why the penthouse is the best.

He’d get to hear good music.

It’s funny.

He’d get to learn about the “Hollywood Walk of Fame.”

He’d learn about hiding places and why to be careful about who knows where they are.

You get to see Julia Roberts in a bubble bath and nude.

He’d learn how to get free food when you’re hungry.

He’d learn about the importance of taking time off.

He’d learn about building something.

He’d learn about psychology.

He’d learn about players and how eventually they settle down.

These are just a few reasons I thought of without watching the movie. It’s been a while since I saw it, so I am going by memory. I’m sure there are a lot of other reasons and I may have some inaccuracies, but you get the gist of it. I hope if you’ve never seen “Pretty Woman” you’ll give it a try because it is an American Classic.

Thanks. That is all for now.

Musings

My Declaration of Self Esteem
By Virginia Satir

I am me.
In all the world, there is no one else exactly like me. Everything that comes out of me is authentically mine because I alone choose it—I own everything about me: my body, my feelings, my mouth, my voice, all my actions, whether they be to others or to myself—I own my fantasies, my dreams, my hopes, my fears—I own all my triumphs and successes, all my failures and mistakes—because I own all of me, I can become intimately acquainted with me in all my parts—I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me, and other aspects that I do not know—but as long as I am friendly and loving to myself, I can courageously and hopefully look for solutions to the puzzles and for ways to find out more about me—however I look and sound, whatever I say and do, and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time is authentically me—if later some parts of how I looked, sounded, thought, and felt turn out to be unfitting. I can discard that which is unfitting, keep the rest, and invent something new for that which I discarded—I can see, hear, feel, think, say, and do. I have the tools to survive, to be close to others, to be productive, and to make sense and order out of the world of people and things outside of me, and therefore I can engineer me—I am me and I am okay.

A Bill of Assertive Rights
From “When I say No, I Feel Guilty” by Manuel J. Smith
You have the right to judge your own behavior, thoughts, and emotions, and to take the responsibility for their initiation and consequences upon yourself.
You have the right to offer no reasons or excuses for justifying your behavior.
You have the right to judge if you are responsible for finding solutions to other people’s problems.
You have the right to change your mind.
You have the right to make mistakes—and be responsible for them.
You have the right to say, “I don’t know.”
You have the right to be independent of the goodwill of others before coping with them.
You have the right to say, “I don’t understand.”
You have the right to say, “I don’t care.”
You have the right to say ”no”, without feeling guilty.

In a psychology class we were given a worksheet called the “Self-esteem Passport”. Here are some of my answers that I thought were interesting:
Physical parts of yourself which you proudly accept:
Eyes, hips, butt, lips, teeth (but need whitening), hands, fingernails, calves, feet, cheekbones
Achievements-things you do well:
Good grades, quick/easy learner, good teacher, good writer (clear, easy to understand), good with a budget (most of the time),reasonable/rational (most of the time)
Acceptance of Faults and how they may be offset by your virtues:
Indecisive but able to reason eventually
See the bad/see the good
Work too much/too hard but take off/let go when I need to
Serious but can laugh at myself
Sense-of-humor how you can put into perspective past hardships you’ve endured:
I’m stubborn but reach a breaking point and give in—asking the guy I am attracted to his name/giving him my card
Sometimes my “dreams” keep me from doing stupid things and protect me from the stupid things I do.
Personal courage: You know you can tackle a tough situation because you’ve done it before:
I keep going into the dark. I don’t give up and I go back for more.
Choosing to risk again:
I try new things and keep trying even when I think I know the answer
Power of failure, how your past failures could lead to new achievements:
No smoking (06/21/03) and no alcohol (09/10/06)
Steps you have taken to be your own best friend:
I looked at Spanish again and bought Don Quixote; I quit drinking
Original qualities in other people and why you admire them:
My best friend Elizabeth is truly determined.
My mom makes me see the other side and argues her point to get it known.
My dad is level-headed.
My brother is good with live things that don’t talk back but respond in different ways.
My friend PJ is easy going and a good listener.
Guilt-producing experience(s) which once made you feel bad about yourself, but which you now choose to eliminate from your growing self-esteem inventory:
Seth

In continuation of my last blog regarding “Legends of the Fall”

In continuation of my last blog regarding “Legends of the Fall,” the ending leads me to think of the best death in movies :   it says Tristan had a” good death”. There are a lot of “good” deaths in this movie. While I agree about Tristan’s and think it’s a cool ending to a great movie, I can think of a lot of movies with good death scenes.  If I had to give an award, I would not be able to. I’d have to round-table it.  The movies that come to mind with “good” deaths are:

Seven-Who saw what was coming for Gwyneth Paltrow’s character?

Beyond Borders-Angelina Jolie

Courage Under Fire-Meg Ryan

Man on Fire-Denzel Washington

Boy in the Striped Pajamas-Asa Butterfield

Braveheart-(I’ve only seen it once—I will have to watch it again), but I think I remember a beheading of one of Mel Gibson’s love interests

The Last of the Mohicans-Burning at the stake/mercy kill I think that is played by Steven Waddington

Somersby-My friend and I were shocked and said “Richard Gere can’t die in movies!” But I think he does again in “Intersection”???

The Deer Slayer-Russian Roulette Nick played by Christopher Walken

Saving Private Ryan-Tom Hanks and the scene at the graveyard at the end of the movie

The Highlander-The death of Heather played by Beatie Edney

An Officer and a Gentleman-Sid’s hanging played by David Keith

Step Mom-Susan Sarandon succumbing to cancer

Top Gun-Goose/Anthony Edwards

Ever After: A Cinderella Story-Drew Barrymore/Danielle’s’s father (Jeroen Krabbe)

Gone with the Wind-Bonnie Blue (Cammie King Conlon)

P.S. I Love You (the memorial service/Gerard Butler’s portrayal of a ghost)

Hope Floats-Gena Rowlands

Can you say the Notebook with Gena Rowlands and James Garner?

Titanic-Leonardo DiCaprio

The Terminator movies

A Cinderella Story-Hillary Duff’s character Sam’s father Hal played by Whip Hubley

Jersey Girl-Jennifer Lopez

Dangerous Minds-Emilio played by Wade Dominguez

Young Guns II-Lou Diamond Phillips

Phenomenon-John Travolta

Missing in Action II the Beginning-Jurgen Prochnow best mind game

The Passion-Jim Caviezel

I’m sure I’m missing some, but you get the picture.

Oscar Snubs (Continued) “Legends of the Fall”

Spoiler Alert!!! Here is my rant about “Legends of the Fall.” After seeing it I read the short story it was based on. The movie is much better than the original book. Sometimes the movie sucks in comparison to the book. I loved “Dear John” the movie until I read Nicholas Sparks’ book. I don’t know if I can ever watch the movie again, because the book is so much better and they changed the best parts just to have a happy ending. “Message in a Bottle” is a toss-up. Both the movie and book are good in their own ways although they are different. “A Time to Kill” and the “Client” the movies stayed pretty true to the books and are excellent, but I thought the book “The Firm” was much better than the movie even though I liked the cast. I don’t want to read “The Notebook” although I really like Nicholas Sparks, because I love the movie and don’t want to ruin it.

Anyway, not to get side-tracked, “Legends of the Fall” was nominated for only three Oscars at the 67th Academy Awards hosted by David Letterman, and only won one. I looked it up because I thought it was nominated for eleven Oscars, but I see it is thirteen total awards out of all the various film societies. Do you know which Oscar it won? We’ll get to that later. Since watching the pinnacle ultimate superlative award show in 1995, I have always been curious about who wins this category if I ever sit through the Oscars. But first, some awards I would give “Legends of the Fall”—some really exist as categories and some I think should be considered.
1. The best use of the words “passionate” and “f..k/f..king”
2. Best movie quotes (“You guys all look like a bunch of ice cream cones”; “I will hide it away with all that’s left unsaid and undone between us”; “Forever turned out to be too long”; “Did I damn everybody around me as well as myself”; “You’re not damned—I won’t allow that”; “How much I wanted to take scalps but it was not my kill”)
3. Best Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) scenes (after Samuel dies and when Tristan sees the zebra’s heart)
4. Best fingernail biter Julia Ormond
5. Best lasso scene Julia Ormond
6. Best Criers-Male Brad Pitt when he visits Samuel’s grave after finally coming home; in the horse-petting/leaving scene; when Isabel Two dies; when Susannah visits him in jail
Female Julia Ormond when she visits Tristan in jail
7. Best restraint of crying-Julia Ormond when she finally gets a letter from Tristan; the hair-brushing scene when she hears about Tristan and Isabel Two’s upcoming wedding and while she is lying in bed next to Alfred; when she meets Tristan’s children
8. Best Lighting-the sunshine in the garden when Tristan and Susannah meet after he returns from his sojourn and when he tells her to keep the bracelet because they told him it was magic and whoever wore it would be protected. Also during Samuel and Tristan’s deaths.
9. Best song-when Samuel Sings “Twilight and Mist” on the soundtrack it’s listed as “The Ludlow”. Best original music would go to James Horner
10. Best Indian character One Stab Gordon Tootoosis and use of subtitles (I thought there were more at the movie theater than appear on my DVD but maybe I’m wrong.)
11. Best Sex Scene Julia Ormond and Brad Pitt although Mr. and Mrs. Smith comes close
12. Best first kiss Julia Ormond and Brad Pitt
13. Best use of horses in so many places
14. Best use of barbed wire
15. Best Costumes Deborah Scott
16. Best foreshadowing when Susannah cuts off a piece of her hair from both sides to leave to the two men in her life prior to committing suicide
17. Best Prodigal Son Aidan Quinn
18. Best political statement ties with Brad Pitt’s wife Angelina Jolie’s “Beyond Borders”
19. Best use of Trivia-Who had ever heard of Ierapetra or knew where it was prior to the movie?
20. Best/most appropriate use of smoking both Brad Pitt and Julia Ormond
21. I also think Anthony Hopkins deserves some kind of award for his portrayal of a stroke victim
22. Best use of a rifle Julia Ormond, Brad Pitt, Paul Desmond, Anthony Hopkins, and Aidan Quinn
23. Best use of a knife with an apple ties with “Sleepless in Seattle”
24. Best use of a pitch fork ties with “Far and Away”
25. Anthony Hopkins almost wins the best use of the bird finger, but Tom Cruise still has it in Top Gun
26. The part devoted to World War I is not very long but it does a good job of showing the war of attrition; however, Gallipoli is better as a composite of World War I

The Awards “Legends of the Fall” deserved and won were from the Western Heritage Awards (Bronze Wrangler Awards) for Theatrical Motion Picture
(Best Director-Edward Zwick
Best Writer/Producer-William D. Wittliff
Best Principal Actor-Anthony Hopkins
Best Principal Actor-Brad Pitt)

So, if you read my prior blog about Oscar Snubs-The Last of the Mohicans, you may have guessed that the only Academy Award “Legends of the Fall” won, was for Cinematography. Such a great movie in so very many ways—one of my favorites of all time for so many reasons—and only one Oscar. Wow.

In all fairness, when you look at Oscar snubs, you have to look at the competition—what movies it was/is up against. In the case of “Legends of the Fall” it was up against “Forrest Gump”, “Pulp Fiction”, “The Shawshank Redemption”, “Quiz Show”, “Four Weddings and a Funeral”, “Blue Sky”, “Little Women”, “The Madness of King George”, “Nobody’s Fool”, “Bullets Over Broadway”, “Tom & Viv”, “Martin Landau”, “Three Colors: Red”, “Speed”, “Clear and Present Danger”, “Wyatt Earp”, “Maverick”, “Queen Margot”, “True Lies”, “The Mask”, “Heavenly Creatures”, “The Lion King”, “Interview with the Vampire”, “The Client”. (Wow, didn’t I just mention that movie? Total coincidence.) “Hoop Dreams was also out at the time, but was also snubbed even though it was on more critics’ top ten lists than any other film that year. Okay, now I can see why there were only three nominations for “Legends of the Fall” since those are some pretty incredible movies!

I don’t watch it often, because “Legends of the Fall” makes me cry, but it is a prime example of a quality movie. If you stuck with me until the end of this post, thanks for reading and watch “Legends of the Fall” to see if you agree.

Oscar Snubs

I had bought “The Last of the Mohicans” due to all this “Lincoln” business, because I had a bit of a crush on Daniel Day-Lewis after seeing him as an Indian in the first movie. He is very choosy about what movies he acts in from what I hear. My brother likes the classics, so one Christmas I gave my niece the novel “The Last of the Mohicans” and I think I gave my nephew “The Three Musketeers”. I’m not sure if the books were really age appropriate, because I think the kids were in middle school at the time, and I don’t know if they ever read them. (I don’t think I have ever read them.) I think I saw them on the top shelf of my brother’s bookcase once many years later, so I think it was a pretty good gift. At least he probably read it if my niece and nephew did not.

So, I tried to watch the movie the other day, but it was early morning and the sound needed to be turned up to understand the accents, and I did not want to wake my roommate, so my best friend and I finally watched it last night for our standing dinner and a movie night. This led me to rant to her about Oscar snubs and so today I was curious about whether this movie received any attention from the Academy.

Wikipedia (love, love, love this site!) Indicates the book is a historical novel by James Fenimore Cooper first published in February of 1826. The extended title which one may not know, is: “A Narrative of 1757”. What I just learned, is it is the second book of the “Leatherstocking Tales” pentalogy (does that mean there are five books in the series?); the sequel to “The Last of the Mohicans: A Narrative of 1757” is “The Pathfinder”.

The name Mohican was actually a blend of two tribe names the Mohegans and the Mahicans. Did Fenimore Cooper really confuse them, or did he do it on purpose because he was writing historical fiction or was it non-fiction? Who knows. Wikipedia indicates a federally recognized tribe of Mohegans are presently based in Connecticut. The Mahicans were based in the Hudson River Valley and now live in the Stockbridge-Musee Community in Wisconsin so neither tribe is really extinct, thank goodness!

So, to get to my point, I told my friend that the 1992 version of “The Last of the Mohicans” should have won an Oscar for Cinematography. What awards/recognition did it receive?

Oscar (Academy Awards, USA): Won Best Sound
Eddie (American Cinema Editors, USA): Nominated for Best Edited Feature Film
ASC (American Society of Cinematographers, USA): Nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography in Theatrical Releases)
BAFTA Awards: Won Best Cinematography (finally!) and Best Make Up Artist
Other BAFTA Awards: Nominated: Best Actor Daniel Day-Lewis (I didn’t know he had a hyphen in his name!)
Nominated: Best Costume Design
Nominated: Best Original Film Score (both my friend and I were commenting on how we loved the music)
Nominated: Best Production Design
Nominated: Best Sound
BMI Film & TV Awards: Won BMI Film Music Award (Randy Edelman recipient)
British Society of Cinematographers: Nominated for Best Cinematography Award
Evening Standard British Film Awards: Won Best Actor Daniel Day-Lewis
Golden Globes: Nominated Best Original Score-Motion Picture
Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists: Won Silver Ribbon Best Male Dubbing (for the voice of Daniel Day-Lewis). Interesting.
London Critics Circle Film Awards: Won ALFS British Actor of the Year (Daniel Day-Lewis). I forgot he was English.
Political Film Society, USA: Nominated for Category (Peace)

So, it is good to know that this movie received some good recognition even though the Academy Awards snubbed it. Don’t get me started about Leonardo DiCaprio and Titanic or Joaquin Phoenix in Walk the Line. I wikipediaed Joaquin, and didn’t realize he originally went by Leaf Phoenix. I agree Reese Witherspoon should have won Best Actress, but come on. Joaquin was Johnny Cash. He was the movie. I understand Leonardo was snubbed again in “Django Unchained”. I haven’t seen that yet, but want to, so I’m not sure if that’s a good call or not. I wikipediaed him, and discovered he was named Leonardo, because his mom was looking at a Leonardo Da Vinci painting at a museum in Italy when Leonardo first kicked. Very cool.

I love the internet and what you can find out. My next blog will be about my feelings about “Legends of the Fall” and the Oscars, so stay tuned.

Another great poem by an anyonymous author and two cool quotes.

The Loom of Time-Author Unknown

Man’s life is laid in the loom of time

To a pattern he does not see,

While the weavers work and the shuttles fly

Till the dawn of eternity.

 

Some shuttles are filled with silver threads

And some with threads of gold,

While often but the darker hues

Are all that they may hold.

 

But the weaver watches with skillfull eye

Each shuttle fly to and fro,

And sees the pattern so deftly wrought

As the loom moves sure and slow.

 

God surely planned the pattern:

Each thread, the dark and fair,

Is chosen by His master skill

And placed in the web with care.

 

He only knows its beauty,

And guides the shuttles which hold

The threads so unattractive,

As well as the threads of gold.

Not till each loom is silent,

And the shuttles cease to fly,

Shall God reveal the pattern

And explain the reason why

 

The dark threads were as needful

In the weaver’s skillful hand

As the threads of gold and silver

For the pattern which He planned.

 ***

A man’s greatest strength develops at the point where he overcomes his greatest weakness.

Elmer G. Letterman

 ***

Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.

General George Patton