As a follow up to last week's post, I think that I have gotten a handle on my eggs benedict craving for now. I can confirm that it's even better with avocado, and also that pickled onions are a genius idea.
After a few straight days of the same thing I was ready to branch out and also I was starting to run out of ingredients so I did a mix n'match. Exhibit 1: the "egg benedict" breakfast sandwich.
Exhibit 2: the "fridge cleanout" breakfast wrap. Eggs, chicken sausage, pickled onions, avocado, and benedict sauce.
In other news, this weekend was the first Boy Scout camp since early December so the dog and I had a single girls' weekend. I made pizza on Friday, but it wasn't very good and honestly, it's hardly worth the effort. I'm making a note for future camp weekends that I would have been just as happy with a frozen pizza from the grocery store.
Saturday's dinner was a winner that checked the boxes of "new", "interesting", "super simple to make", and most importantly "did not require a trip to the grocery store". I'd gotten some Beefless Bulgogi on my last visit to Trader Joe's, and I wasn't exactly sure what I was going to do with it besides pair it with rice. I started cooking the rice and got to work on the google machine for ideas.
The final answer was a base of rice, a julienned carrot, some pickled onions, the bulgogi, and nice drippy eggs, this sauce, and sesame seeds. Costco egg rolls on the side.
Week 4 of 10 of Caroline Girvan's Epic III. This workouts were noticeably easier than previous weeks and for some reason I had a lack of energy this week so the timing worked out.
The battle of the ballerinas! Or "why I have the soundtrack from Swan Lake running in my head on repeat."
Heads up, minor spoilers ahead for The Black Swan and The Red Shoes
Who's seen The Black Swan? Until this weekend I had not. The reasons were:
- It was so overhyped when it came out to the point that by the time it was in theaters I was sick of hearing about it.
- I kept hearing a bunch of gory details. Broken toes and ripping feathers out of skin? Nah, not up my alley.
- An obsessive ballerina getting the role of a lifetime that completely destroys her? Hello 1948 is calling to remind you that The Red Shoes has already been there and done that.
What's the #1 reason why I watch movies that are on my "nah" list? I bet you already know the answer: the Unspooled podcast recently did The Black Swan. As I said, I had no interest in seeing it but was curious what they had to say so I gave it a listen. Once I'd heard the episode, which included full spoilers of every last detail, nothing was going to stop me from watching it ASAP.
A rewatch of The Red Shoes was my target for the next night.
Thoughts on the two movies:
- Yes both movies are about obsessive ballerinas getting their big break, and spoiler, neither movie ends with the heroine going to therapy to learn how to balance art with life. But otherwise you can't really compare them except to say that The Red Shoes is the OG for The Dark Side of Ballet genre.
- The Red Shoes is a celebration of dance and it's a contender for Most Gorgeous Movie ever made. The plot is dark but it's a bright movie with an explosion of color in every shot.
- The Black Swan is an exploration of perfection and obsession with some dance mixed in. The color palette sticks to white swan/black swan.
- Moira Shearer was a real ballet dancer, Natalie Portman is an actor who's studied ballet and gets a boost from a body double and CGI. It doesn't bother me one bit that Portman's dancing wasn't "real". It's "real enough" and I can't imagine this movie with anyone else in the role.
- I can't say enough about the supporting actors in both movies. I'll spare you my gushing here but everyone who shows up on screen in both movies earned their pay.
- The heroines have opposite problems that take them to the same place. It's just that one gets what she's aiming for and one doesn't. Vicky has attained perfection but runs into problems when she wants to be imperfect (have a life outside of dance). Nina is a perfectionist who is asked to be imperfect to reach the next level of perfection.
- The ending of The Black Swan is the most perfect part of the movie. Yes it's subjective and yes you want a different ending for her, but it nails the story so perfectly.
- The ending of The Red Shoes - ouch it kills me to say it but what the what is that mess in an otherwise sublime movie? We know it won't be a happy ending since once you put on the red shoes you can never take off the red shoes, but the way that they get there is so slap dash. Even in the 1940s it takes more than a five minutes of your husband being a twat to make a girl [do whatever it is that Vicky does]. I never noticed before this watch that the rest of the movie doesn't back up that you can't have it all. The prima ballerina before Vicky gets pushed out of The Only Ballet Company in The World when she gets married but then she comes back on top so apparently it's fine for her but not for Vicky.
- Which movie is better? All that I can say about that is that I think that The Black Swan is a one and done - it was amazing but I think that I got all that there is to see in one watch. Even with my beef about the ending, The Red Shoes is a movie that I've seen one billion times and will most likely watch many more times. I'm happy that I've seen them both.
Speaking of endings, I finally finished Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister. I don't want to take anything away from this wonderful book, but it was a much better journey than a destination for me. All along you're trying to figure out what's going on in this story of a mother who starts living time backwards after her son commits a murder - is she imagining it or is it real, and if it's real is she just there to observe or does she have the power to change the future? Once the story gave us those answers I was just like "welp I got what I came here for" and found myself indifferent to the ending. But yes it was a good read, I recommend it, and I'll be checking out more of her books.
What's next? I floundered through this and that and put my foot down and said "I need something that's gonna work." and then said, "let's take another drink out of the Lisa Lutz well". Currently reading: How to Start a Fire.
Your turn: got any good leftover repackaging stories? Have you seen The Black Swan and/or The Red Shoes? Whatcha reading?