Why, oh, why are my eyes not red yet? This has been the most demanding week by far.
FOUR online tests. In two hours. Blasted Geography. American plains…American Midwest…Caribbean islands…natural gas….It’s too much, but knowing I’m nearly done with the course gives me bliss.
There was the pretty science quiz about radiometric dating yesterday and one open-book test on world history today…but it’s all over for now. The six week block ends tomorrow and I think I can be free for a few days.
My science class comically amused me when from the topic of fossils we went to a discussion about aliens and then asking God if they exist (the only way we’ll ever know, according to my teacher) and then ghosts. It’s quite an insightful class.
Today I had to give a speech on my Powerpoint and I felt so nervous I thought I was dying. I was losing my breath just minutes before. I could barely walk. I made my teacher shut the lights and it was still bright! My topic was the film camera! I talked a lot about the pioneers and the Lumière brothers at first; then I realized I could barely pronounce my words because of my nervousness or even face the audience. I kept reading from my index cards. In a little while, however, I realized kids were on their phones (well, some of them) and I began to feel more comfortable. I showed them a video without any words showing the evolution of Film, thanks to the film camera, and I smiled all the way through. The video includes excerpts from the loveliest films, even a shot of Maya Deren.
Then, I began talking about how digital cameras aren’t being faithful to the art of cinema. It is no longer real. Not many can see how beautiful images look on a film strip ready to be projected anymore. Digital cameras look much too real, of course, but film cameras just give us some of the fantasy we need. Apparently I opened my teacher’s eyes about this subject.
I also jumped into how thanks to the film camera my dead movie stars and directors can come alive again and how it can preserve a moment we can never experience again. It can make us feel! If you ever want to really see and appreciate the beauty of film, watch Cinema Paradiso. Thanks to all of this movies will never really die.
I thought my speech was a bunch of crap, because I mostly blabbered, but when I finished, my classmate felt so intimidated about how amazing my speech was that he postponed his presentation for tomorrow. No matter how rude my classmates can be, I still got incredible feedback. My teacher gave me 150/150. This was the big project for the end of the block. I can rest at last! For the time being. There is still geography.
Such reality still struggles to pull open my eyelids of fantasy. I’m accomplishing so much, yet have felt so miserable. I’ve found myself in bed thinking why I still am doing these things for myself, since there is no point. I don’t really have a career that will keep me fed in society. Yesterday I was sitting in my first class wondering why I still pay attention…why I do the work. I’m unworthy of any success and it is likely that my sadness will grow worse. Things started to look pointless more and more. Last night I was sitting in bed, unable to cry, but thought as of why I still try. “Why do I do things if I don’t even love me? If I don’t want to disappear, then why do I feel as if I want to?” I thought.
Getting good grades isn’t everything really. It doesn’t make my life perfect. I’ve felt so irritated lately…and there have been my bouts of jealousy. I cried my eyes out during my birthday because of that.
I felt sad when my birthday ended. It is the only day that is special for me. Everybody treats me as if I were special most of the time. How can I be special if I don’t even feel special? I was done. I didn’t want people to worry about me anymore. I’ve been nothing but a burden. I still wonder why my family loves me sometimes.
Go to a community college…for what? The university I was thinking of going after that doesn’t have an well-known film program. What will a film career do for me in life? The film schools that interest me are in Los Angeles and I have grown wary of the city because of its masses of people and culture. I don’t like cities, but visiting them is nice. Going to San Francisco the other day was enjoyable but not being around people or hearing their brats cry or feeling like I was going to be stomped all over. I do want to go to Finland and study its language after that…and then what? I always have to feel inspired…to work for a goal…for something. Otherwise I will feel stuck and then the boredom and hopelessness will fall in love.
How will I get ahead if I am frightened of being by myself? Of not being able to speak to people as easily as I can with my sister? How can I be in places without feeling jealous of people I see…fearing they might be better than me and then hating myself for it?
I must keep on pretending.
There always has to be something troubling me and mocking me in the mirror and making me feel helpless. At least the university I am thinking of going has a good Finnish program, I think.
Today was a tad bit better. I did all I could and got good results. My favorite band’s singles arrived…in a Status Quo digipack singles box and opening it I was just imagining the angry letter I would come to write until I saw my favorite band’s singles inside. That’s a sick joke. Ironically, I was listening to “Pictures of Matchstick Men” yesterday. That’s a great song. I blushed so hard while holding the singles and my heart beat (as it did today before my speech) and laughed nervously. “LOOK AT THIS BASTARD!” I told my sister after opening the package like a madwoman.
There is something I am looking forward to very much. Loves of Pharaoh will play on Sunday in a silent cinema and I am dying from the unstoppable excitement! I have informed the workers there how badly I am looking forward to it! It’s Ernst Lubitsch’s last film in Germany! (Or was it The Flame?) With Harry Liedtke! I have never seen it! Egyptian culture specialists will come and introduce! Last week my sister and I went for Valentino night (I wasn’t too eager to see Son of the Sheik again, to be quite honest) and before the screening of the full film we saw a clip about his life! I saw POLA NEGRI riding horses with him in Falcon Lair and footage of them I had never seen before and there was a part where she fainted in his funeral. I had been meaning to see that for such a time. I don’t think she faked that…Seeing her sadness…her face buried in a handkerchief…Hell, that’s awful. From my seat, I jumped and poked my sister on the arm and said, “That’s Pola! There’s Pola Negri over there!” I almost had tears in my eyes…It was like seeing a deity on the screen. There was also the home movie of her with Valentino in his yacht eating spaghetti and I saw how happy she looked with him. Pola, I am so sorry people were stupid enough to not truly fathom your sorrow. You fell in love with the man. I would throw myself at the coffin and possibly faint if someone I love died.
I am known as the Pola Negri lady in that place since I ask for her so much. That’s an honor.
What else have I enjoyed doing? Oh, yes, I have been reading Gene Tierney’s autobiography. I always wanted to get it…but I found it last weekend. I started reading it out of curiosity and was drawn in and turning pages. She starts the book with her failed suicide attempt and her recollection of sanity…Then she jumps into how her film career started. She fascinates me…I can relate to some of the things she says. I showed my sister Leave Her to Heaven today and I have got to say that her performance of the psychopathic Ellen will never leave my mind. The movie still enchants my attention. I can understand feeling jealous and afraid of losing something, but not to the point of…the things she did.
Fritz Lang calling her a little bitch on the set of her first film was a curious anecdote.
Watching the Marc Show has also helped me hang in there.
Howard Hughes was quite an odd man.
I may still dislike myself, but growing up can be a remedy. I’m excited for my puppy Greta and my trip to Finland. I’m really grateful for my family.