Mar. 2nd, 2017

athousanderrors: from 'Spirited Away' - soot sprites, clutching confetti stars, running about excitedly. (Default)

I’ve been a fan of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events since I was a baby child, scouring the school book sale for paperback versions of the newest releases. As you can imagine, I couldn’t wait until Netflix released their adaptation of the series. I was optimistic that it would be better than the film, which I only accepted at one point because when you’ve got nothing, you take what you can get. As someone who re-read the series over this past winter holiday, I firmly believe that Netflix couldn’t have done a better job portraying the heart and soul of these books.

Eight episodes long, this first season covers the first four books in the series: The Bad Beginning, The Reptile Room, The Wide Window, and The Miserable Mill. One of my favorite elements of the books, especially during my re-read as an adult, was how crucial books are throughout the Baudelaire children’s attempts to escape the clutches of the dastardly Count Olaf again, and again, and again. Therefore, I put together a short list of the book-related moments in the Netflix adaptation that either made me think, appreciate, or laugh.

Here are my favorite bookish moments in the television series – not a comprehensive list, just the highlights. Some of these are also present in the book series, but they were gratifying to see on camera nonetheless.
athousanderrors: from 'Spirited Away' - soot sprites, clutching confetti stars, running about excitedly. (Default)

Icons about Nick Gehlfuss
athousanderrors: from 'Spirited Away' - soot sprites, clutching confetti stars, running about excitedly. (Default)






It occurs to me that as much as “humans are the scary ones” fits sometimes, if you look at it another way, humans might seem like the absurdly friendly or curious ones.

I mean, who looked at an elephant, gigantic creature thoroughly capable of killing someone if it has to, and thought “I’m gonna ride on that thing!”?

And put a human near any canine predator and there’s a strong chance of said human yelling “PUPPY!” and initiating playful interaction with it.

And what about the people who look at whales, bigger than basically everything else, and decide “I’m gonna swim with our splashy danger friends!”

Heck, for all we know, humans might run into the scariest, toughest aliens out there and say “Heck with it. I’m gonna hug ‘em.”


“I dunno. I gotta hug ‘em.”

And it’s like the first friendly interaction the species has had in forever so suddenly humanity has a bunch of big scary friends.

“Commander, we must update the code of conduct to include the humans.”
“Why? Are they more aggressive than we anticipated?”
“It seems to be the opposite Commander. Just this morning a crewman nearly lost their hand when attempting to stroke an unidentified feline on an unknown world. Their reaction to the attack was to call the creature a “mean kitty” and vow to win it over. Upon inquiry it seems they bond so readily with creatures outside their species that they have the capacity to feel sympathy for an alien creature they have never seen before simply because it appears distressed. I hate to say this commander but we must install a rule to prevent them from endangering their own lives when interacting with the galaxy’s fauna.”
“I see what you mean. So be it, from now on no crewman is allowed to touch unknown animals without permission from a superior officer. And send a message to supplies about acquiring one of these “puppies” so that their desire to touch furred predators can be safely sated. 

Ehehehe I love this! Every time someone adds a short story to my post it gets like 90% cuter and more epic

Lets be honest, the humans would ignore the hell outta that rule whenever alone.

“So I hear that you’ve just recruited a human for your ship.”

“Yes, it’s the first time that I’ve worked with these species, but they come highly recommended. Say, you’ve worked with a few, what tips can you give me? I’d hate to have some kind of cultural misunderstanding if it’s avoidable.”

“The first rule of working with humans is never leave them unsupervised.”

“Wait, what?”

“I’m serious. Don’t do it. Things. Happen.”

“But wait, I thought that I heard you highly recommended that every crew should have at least one on board?”

“Absolutely, and I stand by that. Humans are excellent innovators, and are psychologically very resilient. If you have a crisis, then a human that has bonded wth your crew properly can be invaluable. Treat your human well and you should get the best out of them as a crew member. Their ability to get on with almost any species is legendary.”

“But Toks, didn’t you just say…”

“The trouble is that they will potentially try to bond with anything. If you leave them unsupervised, you have no idea what kind of trouble they can get themselves into. It was sheer luck that the Fanzorians thought that it was funny that the human picked up the Crown Prince to coo at him.”

“Crown Prince Horram, Scourge of Pixia?”

“The very same. Surprisingly good sense of humour. But don’t even get me started on that one time with the Dunlip. Al-Human wanted to know if they could keep it. As a pet.”

“A Dunlip? You mean the 3 metre tall apex predators from Jowun?”

“Yup. Don’t leave your humans unsupervised.”

“I’ll uh, take that under advisement.”

“Seriously. Get a supply of safe animals for the humans to bond with or they will make their own. I mean, they will try to befriend anything they come across anyway, but without any permanent pets they can get… creative. Don’t even get me started on the time one of them taped a knife to one of our auto-cleaners and named it Stabby.
Three weeks in and when we finally caught the wretched thing, half the humans on crew tried to revolt about us “killing” Stabby by removing the knife.
“How… how did you resolve that sir?”
“Glaxcol made a toy knife out of insulation rubber and strapped that on instead. Quite a creative solution, I suppose.”
“And that sated the humans?
“They thought it was so funny they made a second one, strapped false eyes on springs to both and held mock battles. Then decided Stabby and Knifey were in love and now none of them will allow the others to stage fights between them any more.”
athousanderrors: from 'Spirited Away' - soot sprites, clutching confetti stars, running about excitedly. (Default)


Your wife changes her hair color every season and her personality adjusts slightly. You’re secretly only in love with Autumn wife. She just came home sporting her Winter color.

it’s my fault. it’s just that when we met it was autumn; her red-orange hair and crackling laughter. there’s a little spooky in her, a lot of play. and what a better time for falling?

i didn’t realize it for the first few years - something shifting, something so subtle. the winter makes us all cold, the summer makes us all a little out of our minds. i just loved her, because she was incredible, and i was the luckiest person alive.

it’s just that i realized that spring came with sudden bursts of cold. it’s just that summer frequently raged in with fire sprouting from her lips. it’s just that winter was the worst of all, her eyes dead. it’s just that autumn loves me different; throws herself into it without the clingy sweat of summer. i used to love that summer girl, you know? i loved how wild she was, the way in summer she took every risk she could. but i carried her home drunk one too many times, cleaned up one too many of the messes she made for no reason than to enjoy the sensation of burning. and winter was worse; the shutdown, the isolation. how she became distant, a blizzard, caught up in her own head, unable to tell me what was wrong and unable to think i actually wanted to listen.

she comes home, her hair bleached white. a dark smile on her lips. the shadowy parts of her are back. they loom like icicles overhead. she kisses me with her body held at a distance, a peck on my cheek that feels like an iceberg. she makes polite conversation and we go to bed early, our bodies untouching. 

it is a lonely season, i think on the ninth day of this. winter is cold. winter is known for the death of things. when i look at her, i see the girl i fell for, inhabited by an alien. she was the first women i loved so much i felt it would kill me. i can’t leave. when i wake her up with my crying, she tells me to shush and go back to sleep. she’s different like this, quiet, doesn’t eat. 

three days later i stare at myself in the mirror. i wonder if it’s me. if the fat on my body or something in my face or the wrinkles and she doesn’t love me. i try prettier lingerie, lean cuisine, i try different hair, more makeup, try harder. it doesn’t work. she looks at me the same; that empty gaze that neither loves nor condemns my actions. 

somewhere in februrary i lose it. we’re fighting again, from car to restaurant to car to home again. we fight about stupid things, small things; i tell her i feel she doesn’t love me, she says i’m not listening. the circle goes around and around, old pain peeling back, new pain unhealing. i sleep on the couch.

i wake up when i hear her crying, white hair around her all messed up. the kind of sobbing that only comes at two in the morning, heavy and thick and hurting. my winter girl. my heart is breaking. she looks up at me like i’m her anchor. “i’m sorry i’m like this,” she says. and i start saying, it’s okay i’m here we’re married, but she just shakes her head and says, “I know this isn’t the real me.”

i hold her cold hand. she stares at the blankets. “i am different in winter,” she whispers, “i know i am and i’m sorry.” she looks at me. “why do you think i dye my hair? cut it off? get rid of the old me?”

i tell her it’s okay. we’re together and it’s okay, and then she whispers, “i’m sorry you married four of me.”

we lay there like that, her head on my chest. she falls asleep. i stare at the ceiling, thinking of the way she sounded when she was crying. how i helped put her in that pain. how i promised in sickness and in health and everything in between.

the next day i spend at the library. there aren’t enough books on how to love someone with seasonal affective disorder so i make my own, notes and pages and little ideas on post-its. and i take a deep breath and make myself a promise.

she comes home to her favorite dinner and we kiss and she’s uneasy but that’s okay. the next day i bring home flowers and the next day she finds little love notes in her pockets. i love her quiet, the way winter demands, understand her sex drive is faltering; spend more time just cuddling. we drink wine and we kiss and some part of her starts relaxing. 

the truth is there is no loving someone out of their mental illness. the truth is that you can love someone in despite of it; love them loud enough to give them an excuse to believe they can make their way out of it.

and i learn. i remember the rebirth of spring, when she starts thawing. we kiss and have picnics in pretty dresses. i remember her joy at little birds and her rain dancing. i fall in love with the flowers in her cheeks and the little bursts of cleaning. i fall in love with summer’s slow walks and milkshakes and shouting to music playing too loud on the speakers. i fall in love with her dancing, with the sunfire energy. and when winter comes; i am ready. i remember that snow used to look pretty. i fall in love with the hearth of her, with the holiday, with the slow smile that spreads across her face so shyly. i fall in love with how she looks in boots and mittens and every day i find another reason to love her the way she deserves - they way i always should have.

she comes home with her white hair and dark smile and a package in her hands. i ask to see what it is and that small shy grin comes creeping out. it’s a sunlamp packed in with medication. she looks at me with those wide eyes and that beautiful winter blush. “i’m trying to get better,” she whispers, “i promise.”

recovery doesn’t look immediate. sometimes it isn’t neat. i can’t say we never fight or that we’re suddenly complete. but each day, that tiny girl’s strength gives me another reason. i love her. i love her while she tames the roller coaster of spring; i love her for reigning in the summer storms; i love her for taking her winter and trying to be warm. it is hard, because everything worth it is hard. she spreads out her autumn leaves; mixes the best parts of her into everything. learns to take winter’s silence for a moment before yelling in summer. learns to take autumn’s spice and give it to spring. we are both learning.

one day she comes home and her hair is different, but it’s a style i don’t know. i kiss it and tell her that she’s beautiful and the inside of me swells like a flood. i’m so glad that she’s mine. every part of her. the whole. i am the luckiest person on earth. and i always have been. but she’s hugging me and saying, “thank you for helping me,” and i can’t explain why i’m crying.

this is what love is; not always an emotion but rather your actions. the choices we make when we realize our lives would be empty if the other was absent. this is what love is: letting them grow, helping them find their way in out of the cold. this is what love is: sometimes it takes work to see how the thing you planted together actually grows.

this is what love looks like in an autumn girl: it is winter and she glows.


athousanderrors: from 'Spirited Away' - soot sprites, clutching confetti stars, running about excitedly. (Default)

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