Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Fish, science, and the weird sense of familiarity that comes from seeing one's home on the big screen

In other crazy science news, the Telegraph reports that fish can count to four--but no higher. This doesn't really surprise me as I had always suspected fish were hiding secret intelligence. Tomorrow's headline will read, "fish can plot the deaths of humans--but only one at a time." I'm watching you, fish. Walk softly.

I have a question I need a scientist--or a blog reader!--to answer. Like a lot of other people, when I'm approaching a set of doors, I am more likely to go through one that was just opened. But if I'm leaving a building, a door that was just opened and is now in the process of closing is closing TOWARDS me. Wouldn't a door that has momentum closing be HARDER to open than a door that's just sitting there? Is the tendency to use the most recently opened door a FAILURE OF HUMAN RATIONALITY? Anyone?

This week has been absolutely beautiful, but I know it's Fake-Out Spring, the season that comes right before Break-Your-Heart-All-Over-Again-Winter. So I'm trying not to get too emotionally invested in it. I'm having one of those weeks where I don't really sleep, have no time for silly dishes, cooking, or laundry, and feel like I've been bitten by an ill-tempered bitey fish. I spend lots of money because I don't have time to cook. I'm wearing socks with terrier dogs on them with my dress shoes because I don't have any plain black socks. Anything that happens, happens at work, because I barely even remember what my apartment looks like. However, my hair looks HOT. By Tuesday next week, the day after the election, most of the craziness in my life will have evaporated and I will be free to pursue my normal warcraft-playing, zucchini-baking domestic lifestyle.

My sister and James and I went to see The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford last night. It wasn't the best ever, but it also wasn't terrible. Albertans have an attachment to this movie (as do, I suppose, Manitobans) because it was filmed here, on the Canadian prairies, and in the historical village near my parents' old house. I felt a weird sense of familiarity, actually, watching it. The prairies, with broken wheat stalks sticking up among clumps of snow, were so visibly our prairies. There is a scene where Jesse James crouches on a frozen river, and snowy trees rise up behind him, and in the background are the Rockies. That shot was so Canadian it gave me shivers. This would actually make an interesting topic for a paper, if I were still in film studies: (mis)constructions of Canadian wilderness. It was a bit unnerving. I mean, how many Americans think Kansas looks like Manitoba? Or for that matter, think New York looks like Vancouver?

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