Loving the Sacred through Word and Image. AIDS – THIS IS MY PRIDE – SURVIVAL !!! A Wordpress Production

Movies

Les Miserables …

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This is a new record. Two motion pictures in a weeks time. Well, one motion picture and the lauded Best Musical of all time tonight.

It was a date night event. We went out for dinner prior to the movie where we were hassled by a homeless man over dinner, which began the upsetting part of the night. He just wouldn’t leave us alone. And words were said…

The we arrived at the theatre and we were the first two in the room and got our seats up in the back center screen. And a good number of people followed. A row in front of us to the right, a couple were sitting and conversed amongst themselves throughout the entire movie.

You know they tell you to turn off your phones prior to the main event, but they sure as shit don’t tell you that voices carry in an otherwise silent theatre. Hubby was not amused and several times, almost getting out of his seat yelling shut up at the talkers.

The musical was epic. I can see Anne Hathaway going home with a golden statue or two this awards season. I have seen this production on Broadway some number of years ago. The music was heavenly and the “sing through the movie worked really well, there were very few spoken words the entire almost three hour run time. All of the characters on screen were strong. And it was a who’s who in movie talent.

I give the film ten Oscars out of ten. A must see if you are a “musical” person.


Christmas Weekend Home Alone …

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What do you do with a weekend full of time when your hubby is out of town until Monday??? I hate supermarket safari for one. What do you buy when you are only shopping for one? Frozen food that can be portioned and snacky foods that you can eat in between. And of course, PIE !!!

Last night, Friday, I sat around all night here alone, farting around on the computer. I watched a little tv, but I am tired and a little burned out on all the programs dealing with the end of the world.

We survived, get over it, enough already !

I was in no mood for overnight radio, because it was the end of the world extravaganza. BORING !!!

I went over to my library of movies and decided that it would be a chick flick kind of night. I have always loved Diane Lane in “Under the Tuscan Sun” it was nice to watch it again. Then I followed it with “Calendar Girls.” A double feature that carried me to 4 a.m. exactly.

I got into bed and pulled out Harry Potter and read that chapter called “Godric’s Hollow.” Since it is Christmas and all, and that’s where Harry and Hermione end up on Christmas Eve.

It snowed overnight. So we have accumulation on the ground. And maybe it will snow some more tomorrow.

Today – after surviving the near apocalypse, I slept in and rose around 3 in the afternoon. I went looking for things to do for one and decided that I would take in a movie tonight. It was nice getting out of the house for a couple of hours and the theatre is just up the block from home.

I finished reading Yann Martel’s Life of Pi on Thursday night. And one of my friends said on Tuesday last that I would not be disappointed in the film. I arrived early – the first person in the room, I got my seat way up in the back mid screen. It was a 3-D screening.

There are a bunch of cool movies coming out soon from the “coming soon” reel. The 3-d effects for Life of Pi were amazing. If you’ve never read the book, the film kept pretty close to the text. I noticed that in the film a story thread was introduced that doesn’t appear in the book, just a short story arc. I guess they added it to keep continuity in the films timeline.

The rest of the film was lifted directly from the book. I thought it would be monotonous – seeing most of the book takes place on a life boat/raft. I mean how can you embellish a life boat/raft crossing the Pacific Ocean? They did really well with that story arc. And the added 3-d dimension really helped the story along.

There really isn’t much to give away, because I am not going to tell you about the film per se, but if I were to recommend a book to you it would be “Life of Pi,” for sure. It is not a waste of time to read, and the story is riveting from beginning to end. I enjoyed how they decided to present the story telling in the format of a movie. All from the 1st person standpoint of character. That was well done.

A very enjoyable night for sure.

Now I need to cook some food for a late dinner and figure out what movie I am going to watch tonight. Tomorrow I am chairing the Sunday Niter’s meeting at 6:15. We are on chapter 3 – More about Alcoholism.

Hubby comes home on Monday afternoon – we may need to get a few things from the store before hosting a Christmas Dinner for a friend I invited to dinner the other night. I’ve cleaned the house, scrubbed the bathroom, vacuumed and sorted out the stack of papers that usually reside on the dining room table.

I have a hard time being at home alone for any length of time, since hubby and I are not usually apart for numbers of days at a time. I hate sleeping alone. He is enjoying himself with his family.

Wau Lam…

That is all.

More to come, stay tuned …


“Read the Book…”

Courtesy: Untiltheacropolis

It is Thursday and a whole bunch of us played hookey from St. Matthias tonight to go see “The Bill W” story at Cinema du Parc. My sponsor, myself and another friend headed out early because traffic was a beast, but we still got there early.

The theatre is a quaint little building with two screening rooms, a small sugar shack for candies and popcorn. I noticed out front of our hall that public information had set up a kiosk with pamphlets and questionnaires for folks attending the showing.

The film is doing so good that they are extending the run through next week.

While we were waiting for the film to start a gaggle of women from our home group showed up along with other members we see at other meetings.

The film was a documentary about the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, Bill W. and I had read a great deal about his life from our library of old timer literature which I have written about here on numerous occasions.

There were members who spoke on camera and historians who had written books on topics like Bill, and other assorted titles. They gave perspective to the story and members shared bits and pieces from their own stories interjected here and there.

But seeing actual film and photos from the early days, from the 1920’s all the way through Bill and Lois’s lifetime was nice. They spent a great deal telling the story of how the Book came to be and how it was financed and how much trouble there was in the beginning – but in time it all worked out.

They went on to tell of group consciences that caused folks problems and issues with the movement because as of yet the traditions had not been written. And there were problems like (for example) a group in Virginia had members who drank during meetings, (I laughed out loud), and another issue was in the days past people of color showed up at meetings and were asked to leave the meetings because of their skin color. Eventually the group took a second vote and admitted them to meetings as “observers.”

Hence the traditions came to be and the groups were taught the 12 traditions that have held the fellowship together for more than 70 years.

It was said of Bill, that he was / is a genius. A man who changed the face of the 20th century in founding our movement and the lives he saved through his work.

The 12 steps – Bill wrote sitting in bed with a pencil and a yellow notepad. The original steps from the (Oxford group) were six in total and now grew to 12, Bill mused that 12 was providential in religious and spiritual circles.

The steps kept us on the path and later the traditions would keep the groups on the path. The divinely inspired notion of “god as we understood him” was a strike of genius. The reach of this notion was widespread.

Many discussions were had by the early members over the wording and verbiage of the passages from the book. And since their writing, hasn’t been changed since.

A good amount of work went into writing chapter 5 – How It Works. This was the script of what A.A. is, how it works, speaks of the suffering alcoholic and explains through the steps how we might recover from this disease of body and mind.

Once the movement got started and began to mushroom out all over the U.S. and later across Canada and then the world, the publishing and dissemination of our literature grew exponentially.

The movement would grow to the point that Bill came to the decision that A.A. would have to be handed back over to the members because Bill and Lois, were living lives in the public and people held them both in highest esteem. And Bill could never escape the needs of so many groups of drunks.

A major theme that comes out of this problem for Bill was that of depression. If you read any historical material on Bill, you will have read that he suffered almost unending deep and dark depression from which he thought he would never recover. But things like LSD and Vitamin B3, were experimental drugs to help cure alcoholism and depression.

Bill had help in a small group of people who worked with him. It was hard in the 1920’s through the 1940’s to get the word out when poverty was a national problem. Bill and Lois lost their home, at one point, and relied on the good graces of members to find places to live and cars to drive.

Towards the end of Bill’s life he was faced with the fact that he wanted to go back to his human life and not be such a “deity” in the eyes of the members. He was stuck on a pedestal that members had place him on and it was such hardship for him – he wanted us to take the reins and let him go be just Bill …

On January 24th, 1971 Bill died at the Miami Heart Institute. He had addressed the Miami A.A. conference with a few short words, but was returned to the hospital where he died later that day.

Over 2 million people are counted in our numbers, in hundreds of languages and located in countries and territories all over the world. And it all came down to this one man, Bill Wilson.

We owe him and Lois a debt of gratitude for their work and their lives and testimony. Because had Bill not had that spiritual experience and meet the men he met in his life, A.A. would never have gotten off the ground.

There are scattered all over this blog articles and writings that I have written over the years that give testimony of how A.A. found it’s legs, who helped pass the message and those who were responsible for the spreading of the A.A. message.

The old timers would tell you to Keep Coming Back…

The book says “I earnestly advise every alcoholic to read this book through (the Big Book) and though perhaps he came to scoff, he may remain to pray.”

William D. Silkworth, M.D.


Goodnight you Princes of Maine, You Kings of New England…

They say that we should never forget our last drink. I remember the night, it was a Saturday night. I remember the drink. Rum and Coke of course. But I don’t remember how many drinks I plowed through that night.

I also don’t remember what happened after I drank all that liquor. What happened to me, who took me from the club, how did I get home, and equally worse, how did I get through two locked doors by myself if I was that inebriated?

I just don’t remember, and that not only happened once, it happened a second time. I was no longer enjoying the drink. I was caught up in it up to my eyeballs. The drink had me in its sights. But there was always the next day. That would be Sunday.

I had a drinking ritual that I always followed. I had a studio apartment and a huge tv that I had, a VCR and a few movies in my collection. My VCR has since died, the last time I fired up the old girl and tried to play this movie, let’s just say, the goose was cooked.

But at the time, during those last few nights of drinking at Salvation, there was no salvation for me. And I did not even think about my own redemption. For who can save the alcoholic from the death of the bottle?

They say God loves children, fools and alcoholics. Or something of that sort.

The Cider House Rules had become a tradition of sorts. I would get home somewhere around 2 or 3 am.

This movie holds a special place in my heart because it speaks of youth, love, death and hope. It is the story of Homer Wells. A young man born into an orphanage where he spends his life, after two failed adoptions gone bad.

Homer grows up to learn a great many things, for lack of a better phrase, he was educated on site to take kindly to the welfare of a woman’s choice or decision. And to help women who are stuck between a rock and a hard place, when it comes to children and having more of them, in a time when it did not bode well for children or multiples of them.

After seeing enough he decides to step out on his own and finds himself on an orchard picking apples with a Mr. Rose and his groupies who travel season to season picking fruit around the U.S.

Homer has a love hate relationship with Dr. Larch, who hatches a plan for Homer, who at one point seems to be more concerned with the orchard than the orphanage. He saves a young girl, he falls in love, he falls out of love.

It is a sad truth that at the end, us drinkers find it hard to be alone. A theme that is present in the film as well.

With the death of Dr. Larch, Homer is notified of his death and in the end returns to the orphanage to do what he should do. He returns to a life that was built solely for him by the late Dr. Larch.

I love the feeling of this movie – the story and the characters. The last scene of the movie is what kills me every time…

Homer begins David Copperfield.

“Thus I began my new life, in a new name, and with everything new about me … I felt … like one in a dream… The remembrance of that life is fraught with so much … want of hope … Whether it lasted for a year or more, or less, I do not know. I only know that it was, and ceased to be; and … there I leave it.”

Curly asks: What happens next?

Homer smiles

And goes on: That’s tomorrow, Curly. Let’s not give the story away.

Homer puts out the lights and leaves the boys in the familiar semi-darkness. Seconds, later, the closed door to the hall is flung open, flooding the room with light from the hall, and Homer, dressed in his long white laboratory coat and looking every inch the doctor, delivers his best imitation of Larch’s popular blessing.

HOMER:  Good night, you Princes of Maine! You Kings of New England!

I was so lonely and probably at the lowest point I was ever in  my life. I was alone. And I have said it before that had I dropped off the face of the earth, nobody would have missed me nor come looking for me.

I held on to that blessing for all these years. If the movie plays I have to watch it through to its conclusion…

Good night, you Princes of Maine! You Kings of New England.

I hoped and hoped that one day someone would say a prayer for me.

That passage is very prophetic, now that I have listened to it spoken again. It speaks to my heart. I was so lacking in hope, and God brought me that hope and brought me here. It is all very providential.

The one true memory of the last night I took a drink is engrained in my heart, and I will never forget it. For as much as I could remember because I followed the same ritual.


We Were Here …

A Feature Length Documentary by David Weissman

“Of all the cinematic explorations of the AIDS crisis, not one is more heartbreaking and inspiring than WE WERE HERE…  The humility, wisdom and cumulative sorrow expressed lend the film a glow of spirituality and infuse it with grace… ONE OF THE TOP TEN FILMS OF THE YEAR.”        Stephen Holden, New York Times

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Earlier tonight as I was writing “We are not meant to be alone” hubby had put on this documentary that was airing here in Canada tonight. And so I sat through this film reliving the past 20 years of my life in stark detail.

Listening to the story tellers just breaks my heart, because I was there through the worst time of our lives. You just cannot imagine what it was like. Thinking about it is one thing, listening to someone narrate that time period is heart wrenching.

You know, the further I get from the past, the less I tend to think about it today. But every once in a while, and this rings especially true during Pride Months these documentaries play as reminders to those we lost.

I want so badly to tell you that YES, we are not meant to be alone and that we are all loveable no matter what devastation or situation we find ourselves in. And I think somewhere deep down, hubby’s message in watching this film was to say, yes I remember for you and you are not alone here in this life.

Things in my neck of the woods were as frightful as they were in San Francisco and in many big cities in the very beginning. When AIDS came to Ft. Lauderdale, we were all taken aback by the horror of just what AIDS was doing to our community.

Thank God – T H A N K   G O D that what I saw did not happen to me. Because it was ugly. I have documented all these things in PAGES, but for the moment I am drawn to address this topic here and now because it weighs heavily on my heart and soul.

When I sero-converted I was so sick. I thought for sure that I was going to die at any moment. But my friends and keepers in the AIDS care circle had other plans for me.

The film speaks of finding a cure …

that there should be more than AZT…

Back in those days we were all taking AZT because there was nothing else to take. We even went the lengths to collect old drugs from people who had died, and those drugs were taken to drug farms and re-purposed for use for those who were still alive and fighting to stay alive.

God forbid you had to go to a hospital. They would break out the hazmat suits and moon goggles and scrubs. It was heartless the way that the medical community treated us, for a long time, until they got trained to be able to deal with us without all the fear that was running rampant through the cities.

There were no specialists, no real doctors at that point, it was hit and miss because there really was no social medical safety net to take care of all the sick. But there were enough people to begin with that took on the task of treating what they could with whatever they had on hand.

I know for myself. I took tons of pills to try and find something that worked. And in the beginning that was AZT. It made me sick, and we had little pocket timers that would go off every four hours to remind us to take our pills.

Eventually in Miami there was dedicated doctors who were in the loop of medical research that I got involved with and what these doctors did for me is nothing short of a miracle.

With Genotype and Phenotype testing, they figured out the strain and type of virus we were carrying, then from that they proceeded to attaining tables of drugs that we could take that had promising results in the lab. And as drug companies pushed out pills we took them.

We did not wait for test circles to form on others, we tested all those meds ourselves. So that every year we survived, we had data to share with the rest of the world as AIDS was a worldwide epidemic.

But medication was expensive especially if you could not afford your pills. There were no insurance plans designed for this – people were selling their life insurance policies and going on government disability to be able to afford treatment. I know it took me three attempts to finally get disability coverage in the U.S. I had to almost kill myself to get my social services person to sign off on my form.

Let me tell you what the government made us go through to get disability insurance. We had to be on deaths door step, sick unto death before they would finally clear you. I got so sick that on the day I finally got signed I walked into the office, not having bathed or shaven in a weeks time, hacking and coughing all over the place for someone to fear me enough to sign on the dotted line so that I could get assistance. It was heartless and cruel the things the government and the state did to those who were sick.

They made us little white boys go to places that white people don’t go to in broad daylight. Trekking from one side of the city to another taking bus after bus and train after train just to get social assistance. Needless to say that once a cast iron bitch always a cast iron bitch.

People were so afraid of the sick. God forbid you sat next to us on a bus, or a train. God forbid you had to deal with us directly.

  • I watched families throw their sons out into the streets.
  • I watched lovers toss their loved ones out into the streets as well.
  • I witnessed land lords toss sick people from their homes.
  • I witnessed employers fire and cut people off from insurance and livelihoods.
  • I witnessed so called Christians get on their hellfire and brimstone horses and watched them burn us all down to the ground with hatred and fear mongering.
  • My Own family turned against me when I got sick. They would rather condemn me rather than help me so fuck them …

It was Sick. Absolutely and Totally Sick !!!

And still today that hatred simmers in certain circles. And every year we go through these periods of time when we are raw with emotions that some fuck comes along and throws salt in the wound just because they feel righteous !!!

The One Good thing that did happen was it galvanized those who were left into care circles and care givers. AIDS separated the men from the boys and the girls from the women. You learned just how devoted your friends were to you and just how much they meant to you while they were still here.

And FUCK all you haters out there. Heartless Bastards…

So many of my friends died. All I have is a photo album of the last time I saw the Names Project Quilt show in Ft. Lauderdale or Miami I think it was. This blog is a testament and my memory for those years of my life when I thought that I too was going to die.

God in his infinite wisdom had other plans for me. There was a life to live. There were things I still needed to do, and people to meet and places to see. Today I have the best doctor in the world. He treated patient Zero, the French Flight Attendant back in the old days. I truly lucked out when I moved here to find him and get into his clinic.

It is sad that there is still no cure. But death is something of a second thought now. We are living longer. I had a doctor who told me that when I die that it won’t be AIDS that kills me. And that was a long time ago.

I’ve always said that if science ever gets to the point that time travel is possible, the time I would go back to is the period of time that I was first diagnosed, because it was the Best of Times and it was The Worst of Times. I knew then that I was loved and so cared for that I wanted for nothing. And I think that that is what saved me.

There wasn’t time to sit and wait to die. I was too busy being taught how to survive and in that time I did not sit in my shit and play with it. Time was of the essence and men nor horses were going to keep me from winning this fight.

Every day that I look in the mirror I thank God for Todd and Roy and all the others who took the time to teach me and to love me and to make sure that nothing took me down be that sickness or man.

Never Forget and Remember still that on your daily goings on, you never know who you are sitting next to on the bus or on the train, or walking down the sidewalk, you never know what battle someone else is engaged in.

It Gets Better. We are still alive. And our stories should never be forgotten.

We Were Here … I was there, and I am still here.


I Can’t, He Can, I Think I’ll let Him …

Courtesy: Flickr Julianbialowas

Sunday has come and gone. Sitting comfortably at 13c at this hour. This short cold snap is over for now as temp will rise back into the teens this week. But it was a nice visit. I broke out my toques and my winter sweat shirts this weekend.

I began to clean out our closets and toss stuff we don’t need and get ready to make a hefty donation to Dans la Rue. Every year we clean out what we don’t need or outgrown or just don’t use any longer and we donate them to the homeless ministry here in the city. Winter duds are expensive and if you can afford a humble donation of jackets, sox, toques, and gloves they go very far to help Father’s kids here in the city.

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Tonight we gathered at St. Leon’s for Sunday Nighter’s. We read from Experience, Strength and Hope. Tonight’s story – The Car Crasher …

In the end it all came back to the simple principles … Did you pray today? Are you taking time in the morning to connect? At the end of the day do you stop and say “Thank You?” It is so simple, yet we tend to complicate things too much.

I can’t – He can – I think I will Let Him…

There was a lot of sharing. People at different stages in life, looking for answers. There is a bevy of literature to read at this particular meeting. They carry a huge stock of books and pamphlets. One of my friends has been sober more than twenty years and she is having a hard time. So I shared with her the book called “Voices of Long Term Sobriety.” A small book of thoughts and stories of people who have been sober in multiples of 10, 20, and 30 years or more of sobriety.

I just finished reading the book last week, and now it is in someone else’s hands. Hopefully it will make the same impact.

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I got home from the meeting and set down to watch Good Will Hunting, with matt Damon and Ben Affleck. It is an Oscar winner film. We had to watch it and read an article for Sociology tomorrow night. While hubby was watching the Emmy’s I was over here watching the movie.

We had a nice dinner and everyone is getting ready for bed at this hour. A new week is upon us. Lots to do…

That’s all for tonight…

 


Nerd Fighters Unite …Read It First …

Click the link: Read It First, take the pledge and join us Nerd Fighters with John and Hank Green, John Green is the author of  “The Fault in our Stars” with this new exciting project.

You Tube Video: How to make Ideas Real.

I am a huge fan of the Green Brothers on You Tube. they are writers, musicians and really great men of the world. Anything we can do to help them, we do it.

So join the cause and make the world a better place.

There is a link, farther down on the blog. When you take the pledge on the site it will give you the code to place an image to your own Site, Blog, Tumblr.

Thanks Again …

 


The Neville Connection …

Courtesy: Matthew Lewis Fans

Otherwise known as Neville Longbottom

And as soon as I hit publish and got up from my chair I saw lightening flash in the sky and the rain began to fall…

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If you are a Harry Potter head like me, you have read all the books and now, probably seen all the movies and then some.

Over the last few months I have read and re-read book seven enough that I had to re-glue the book back together because my copy is all bent backwards and forwards.

I decided to go back and re-read the other books going backwards. So first was Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, The Order of the Phoenix and lastly, The Goblet of Fire.

There is a distinct change in writing styles from Goblet into the Order and on into the Half Blood Prince and the Deathly Hallows. Harry as a young teenager in the Goblet is written in such a way that they are still explaining things to him through the story and introducing new characters who will play greater roles in Harry’s life later on in the successive books.

Long Long ago if you followed along on the websites and J.K.’s notes about the characters, The Prophecy spoke about a boy born at the end of July who would battle the Dark Lord and have powers that he had not.

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As Snape was apprehended before the full prophecy could be made, only part of the prophecy was reported to Voldemort. Oddly enough, the prophecy could have referred to one of two people born at the end of July, later known to be Harry Potter and Neville Longbottom. Though the prophecy could have referred to either Potter, a half-blood, or Longbottom, a pure blood, Voldemort decided that it was the child of James and Lily Potter to whom the prophecy was referring. Shocked by Voldemort’s decision, Snape hastened to Dumbledore and explained that Voldemort had come to the conclusion that the Potters’ child was his would-be vanquisher, and had vowed to kill him. Snape also confessed his longtime love for Harry’s mother, Lily, and offered Dumbledore his loyalty in exchange for her protection.

**** **** ****

You would know that Neville is the other boy that could have taken his spot in the story instead of Harry, had Voldemort gone after him rather than Harry. And it comes to pass that Neville’s parents are tortured by the Lestrange’s using the cruciatus curse and driven mad in the process and that they live at St. Mungos hospital for magical maladies.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches … born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies … and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not … and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives … the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies …
—Prophecy made to Albus Dumbledore by Sybill Trelawney

It was in the Goblet that Harry learns about Neville’s parents, but not yet who their torturers were. Dumbledore tells Harry not to tell anyone, that it would be Neville’s right to tell who he needs to tell. And Harry carries this memory forwards in the story.

In The Order of the Phoenix, Harry has his vision of Mr. Weasley getting attacked by the snake and ends up in St. Mungo’s over the holidays. And on one occasion Harry, Hermione and Ron are visiting Ron’s father and they happen across the long term living floor where Gilderoy Lockheart is living, and they also happen across a young Neville visiting his parents on the ward on Christmas. It is then that we see just how terrible Neville’s suffering is having his parents alive but unable to recognize him while he is there with his grandmother.

Harry is faced with a truth that while his parents were killed by Voldemort trying to save him, Neville’s parents still live, although insane from torture. Harry learns just how much several of his friends have been impacted by Voldemort’s cruelty and evil.

Harry then shares the secret with Hermione and Ron about Neville’s parents. It is part of the story that Dumbledore tells Harry continuously that he should share what he has learned with them as the story progresses.They are always kept in Harry confidences.

There are other secrets that come to light throughout the earlier books that are finally explained in the seventh and final book. In The Half Blood Prince, Harry and Dumbledore visit the gaunt shack several times throughout Tom’s life to see several memories that have been collected.

BUT

If you read The Goblet of Fire now, after reading all the other books and you go back, the story opens with Voldemort finding himself in the old manor house where he kills his father and grandparents and also the old caretaker of the manor house who happens upon Voldemort and Wormtail. That is one piece of the story that is introduced well early of its placement later on in the time line.

This is one memory that stands alone and is never really rectified where Tom was never totally connected to the deaths of his father and grandparents, but Dumbledore suspects that it was a magical death. And here in Book four, the Goblet, the story plays out for us on the pages, directly from the memory played out in the Half Blood Prince.

At the end of the Goblet where the Dark Lord rises, you learn who the Death Eaters are that return to him after his resurrection and those death eaters later play a crucial role in the Deathly Hallows. Harry is able to name them to Dumbledore back in his office after returning from Little Hangelton.

The graveyard of Little Hangleton is where Voldemort’s father and granparents are buried near the manor house of the same name exist in the Goblet and are mentioned in the Half Blood Prince when Dumbledore introduces this memory of the killing of Tom’s father and his parents.

You get introduced to many characters who take on greater roles in the story later on in the Goblet of Fire. Harry begins to run across Horcruxes in the Order of the Phoenix, with the help of Hermione and Mrs. Weasley and the cleaning of Number 12 Grimmauld Place. J.K. has woven all these little tidbits of secrets and mysteries within the stories as they flesh out into the Deathly Hallows.

In the Half Blood Prince, Harry gets his first taste at fighting and finding Horcruxes with Dumbledore and learns all those secrets that have been hinted at or firstly introduced in the earlier books. It must have been a long process trying to figure out how she would introduce each layer of the story with whom and by whom. Each Character she introduces in earlier stories grow into crucial characters who all play a role in Harry’s success in the final installment.

It is in the final book where Neville gets brought into the final three Horcrux secret where Harry tells him about killing Nagini when Harry is off to the forest. And in the end the boy who almost was the boy targeted by Voldemort, Neville gets to kill one of Voldem0rt’s horcruxes. The silent/other participant in the prophecy gets his moment in the light.

In the Goblet of Fire, when Wormtail takes blood from Harry to restore Voldemort’s body, when he takes the blood, he inadvertently creates another Horcrux that must be destroyed later on. Harry becomes a horcrux himself because some of the charm his mother gave him now resides in Voldemort. And while a part of Lily exists inside Voldemort, he cannot be killed. Which is why, in the Deathly Hallows, when Voldemort attempts to kill Harry in the forest, he then kills the final horcrux himself. And Dumbledore sheds light on all those things that happened throughout all the books to Harry. All those little unexplained pieces of information get explained by Dumbledore through his study of all things Voldemort. Harry was the seventh Horcrux. The one that was made inadvertently in the Goblet.

What other tidbits of information do you have from your reading of the Harry Potter stories??? Share then with us…


They are Coming …

The night has been exciting, as news of the first crowds preparing for the first showing of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The first shows should have ended by now, and tomorrow the reviews will be coming in from all corners of the world.

We have tickets for the 4 p.m. show on the IMAX screen at Scotia Bank Place Theatres in Downtown Montreal.

I’ve seen all the clips that have been released. I am hoping for a good show tomorrow. From all that I have seen, the clips are true to the book.


Harry Potter

And the Deathly Hallows.

As you see, the imagery on the blog has changed, as we begin the countdown to the Finale Episode 1 of Deathly Hallows on the 19th of November.

Throughout the month you will see these images change as the day approaches. I have something BIG planned for premier day, so stay tuned. We will rotate in and out new images from the trailer of the first film. I spent a good hour watching the latest trailer over and over again trying to find suitable images to post here on the blog.

I have 8 header images and assorted shots from the film here and there. Maybe I will do successive Harry Potter posts into the feed. People like Harry so maybe we will do that.

Stay tuned …


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"The Hurt Locker" wins Oscar for best picture

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – “The Hurt Locker” won the Academy Award for best picture on Sunday, capping a historic Oscar ceremony that saw the low-budget Iraq war drama vanquish the sci-fi blockbuster “Avatar.”

Its victory also brought a second statuette for Kathryn Bigelow.

Bigelow was one of the four producers of “The Hurt Locker,” along with journalist Mark Boal, financier Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro. Chartier was banned from the ceremony after the French native broke Oscar campaign rules by e-mailing voters on behalf of the picture.

“The Hurt Locker,” which centers on an American bomb-disposal squad in Iraq, is now out on DVD. It earned a modest $15 million at the North American box office. It was distributed by closely held Summit Entertainment.

Its closest Oscar competition was considered to be “Avatar,” the all-time box office champ produced and directed by James Cameron, Bigelow’s ex-husband.

Both films received nine nominations.

(Reporting by Dean Goodman, Editing by Sandra Maler)


“The Hurt Locker” wins Oscar for best picture

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – “The Hurt Locker” won the Academy Award for best picture on Sunday, capping a historic Oscar ceremony that saw the low-budget Iraq war drama vanquish the sci-fi blockbuster “Avatar.”

Its victory also brought a second statuette for Kathryn Bigelow.

Bigelow was one of the four producers of “The Hurt Locker,” along with journalist Mark Boal, financier Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro. Chartier was banned from the ceremony after the French native broke Oscar campaign rules by e-mailing voters on behalf of the picture.

“The Hurt Locker,” which centers on an American bomb-disposal squad in Iraq, is now out on DVD. It earned a modest $15 million at the North American box office. It was distributed by closely held Summit Entertainment.

Its closest Oscar competition was considered to be “Avatar,” the all-time box office champ produced and directed by James Cameron, Bigelow’s ex-husband.

Both films received nine nominations.

(Reporting by Dean Goodman, Editing by Sandra Maler)


Latter Days …

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Click Film Link Here: Latter Days Movie

I was on You Tube the other night and I saw  trailer for this little gay film called “Latter Days.” A movie about a group of young Mormon men who travel from Idaho to Los Angeles for “Mission.” But the apartment complex they moved into carries with it its fair share of complications to their “Mission.”

Aaron, our young Mormon man with Mission stars in his eyes meets a young man named Christian and they form a relationship of sorts. At Christian’s place of employment a bet is laid down and things progress.

Our two young men find themselves in water that is getting ever hotter as the movie progresses. Suffice to say that Aaron (Elder Davis) is sent home after being witnessed kissing another boy (Christian).

He is excommunicated from his church by his father and their elders and this leads to a suicide attempt and a stint in a reprogramming center to “cure him.”

Christian is under the impression, as we are the viewers, that Aaron was dead because Christian finds his number and calls his house and his mother tells him that she lost her son. Christian goes through some serious mourning.

He does not know the real story of where Aaron is …

In the end, you’ll have to rent the movie to find out what happens.It made me cry like a girl … Go Rent This Film …

This film may be a fiction story but the truth is there. The religious view of the Mormon church is not in dispute. But is portrayed truthfully. Many young gay men and women deal with issues of self and homosexuality every day. Many of them go to an early grave because of what they are put through by those who don’t accept them, family, friends, employers, schools, religion…

If you or someone you know needs help you can call the TREVOR hot line around the clock: 1 -866 – 4 – U – TREVOR …THE TREVOR PROJECT.


Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

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The dark and brooding way in which this film is presented gives it a new feel, unlike all the other movies. Some have called this the best of the movie yet so far. I will hold that judgment until the final film is out.I liked the way in which this film was “filmed” and shown.

Firstly, I though that Bellatrix and her cohorts were given way too much screen time, as deatheaters don’t show up much in the book. The whole doing the unbreakable deed at Pettigrew’s with Narcissa and Bellatrix was something. I don’t know if Cissy looks the part, from the way she is described in the Deathly Hallows. Helena Bonham Carter is devilishly evil in her portrayal.  But why does her crew get all this screen time? Are they trying to bait us with an impending battle to come?

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Did you know that Harry Potter and I share a birthday – the 31st of July. I think that they gave good time to the rest of the story in the book. But refraining from telling more about the romances between Harry and Ginny and the brooding budding relationship between Ron and Hermione was telling.

What DID strike me as odd was the wand fight at the Burrow… Why did Bellatrix and company move on the Burrow. And where did they get that sequence from – because I went back to the book looking for it – I just wondered why they would destroy the burrow and leave the Weasley’s homeless when the burrow plays a pivotal part in the opening of the next movie – or are they going to skip the whole Harry’s Birthday and the wedding of Bill and Fleur in the next installment? Are they giving the Weasley’s an out?

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The whole disapparating visual was great. And the way that they told the story of the memories and the pensieve were well done. It was very close to the telling in the book. The youthful Tom Riddle was well played. The fact that they only placed one group of deatheaters in the castle – at the time of Dumbledore’s death was also telling. They are saving the big battle for the final film. I think they gave us at least a hint of what it will look like when we finally get there.

Malfoy gets a lot of screen time. In his attempt to get the cupboard in the room of requirement working correctly, this portion of the movie played true to the text. The bathroom scene with the wand fight between Harry and Malfoy was very dark and telling as well. There is no friendship between them. And no love lost when Harry uses “Sectumsempra” on him.

Snape is as sinister as he is in the book. The fact that Harry uses the “Sectumsempra” on Snape was in the book, but the visual on screen does not follow the book. The Flight of Snape and party was intertwined with the realization that Snape is the Half Blood Prince and he lets Harry be there, and does nothing to get him the the Dark Lord. Strange – nobody bothered him at this point of the movie. There was no big Dark Lord fight…

The fact that they left out the funeral for Dumbledore leads me to believe that they have a lot of action to get into the next two films. A funeral – the last of the Dursley’s – the leaving of the house and the lifting of the trace – the wedding and the crashing of the Death Eaters – the quest for the horcruxes and the final battle for the castle is going to take up much of the screen time, if the film makers believe that can keep continuity in telling the rest of the story.

They did well with the sea cave – the locket and the drinking of the potion was very true to the book. They did a good job with the visual of the Inferi and the lake of the dead. I went back to my book to try and piece together what they showed in the movie as to what is in the book.

They added film sequences that throw the book continuity out of synch – they did not spend enough time on telling the story as the book reads. They gave minor characters in the 6th book more air time than the book gives them, and in the end, I enjoyed the film.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - The Weasley Clan

I am a little too fond of the Weasley’s and was sad the see their house get burned to the ground. I don’t know why they did that to them, as we know that Molly and Belltrix go head to head in the final battle – maybe the destruction of their house gives Molly a BIGGER resentment to see Bellatrix dead in the final film.

I still adore the final book. They have big shoes to fill in the last two film installments. I would be disappointed if they did not maintain story telling continuity through the last of the Half Blood Prince – they need to give Dumbledore closure and they need to open the next film with a BIG piece of the story – I hope they don’t leave anything major out of the story telling.