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Intellectual House o' Pancakes Webdiary

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2006-10-01 - 12:42 p.m.

I will not permit any man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.

--Booker T. Washington, 1856-1915

TV and mainstream Hollywood movies want us to believe that being young is a glorious thing, but filmmaker Andrew Bujalski--who is actually young--seems more comfortable with the reality that being twenty-sumthin' can sometimes be a drag: bad temp jobs, aimlessness, romantic cluelessness, house parties where you drink too much wine and say embarrassing things to your friends (oh, wait...I still do that).

His movie Funny Ha Ha (which is out on DVD now) captures the angst, ennui, and self-doubt of that crappy netherworld between college and the rest of your life. It's not a great film, but it features some really natural performances by a bunch of unknown actors, and I always like films where the people just look like normal folks.

The scene that got to me is the one where the protagonist, Marnie, sits down and makes a checklist--replete with boxes--of ways she can improve her life: "Don't drink for a month...learn how to play chess...visit initiative!"

If I had a dollar for every checklist like that I've made...

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