too many figs

Dearest ______,

Fickle women like us, we are but distant echoes of Slyvia’s words before she succumbed to a permanent state of dream-less sleep.
Too many figs.
Too many figs.

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“I saw my life branching out before me like the green fig tree in the story. From the tip of every branch, like a fat purple fig, a wonderful future beckoned and winked. One fig was a husband and a happy home and children, and another fig was a famous poet and another fig was a brilliant professor, and another fig was Ee Gee, the amazing editor, and another fig was Europe and Africa and South America, …
… I saw myself sitting in the crotch of this fig tree, starving to death, just because I couldn’t make up my mind which of the figs I would choose. I wanted each and every one of them, but choosing one meant losing all the rest, and, as I sat there, unable to decide, the figs began to wrinkle and go black, and, one by one, they plopped to the ground at my feet.”

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Do we cut down this tree of perennial longing, stop it from bearing fruits of unattainable dreamjuice?
Our fertile minds, they sometimes imagine futures too full of self- expectation.
Too many figs.
Too many figs.

The more we grow them, the more we hunger.

Love,

Karlita

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hunger games

Dearest ______,

Despite all the meh reviews I’ve read on the internet about the Hunger Games movie, I still opted to watch it because, hey, you always want to see these things for yourself. That being said, I went, I saw, and I concurred…

The Hunger Games movie needs to be fed the following:

1) Character build- up… I kept cringing at the many cheesy, stereotypical ways characters were portrayed. Eek at “high school jock and in- crowd” references- they were supposedly gritty in the books… There were too many gaps in the story because the characters (again, the way they were meticulously written in the books) were not properly introduced and developed in the movie.
2) Better story- telling… Too many useless scenes with random flashes of memories brought up here and there, when the movie showed nothing else to really support the weight of these histories. We get it, District 12 is poor, Katniss is the sole “bread- winner” (hohoho, and Peeta is the baker’s son)… As my date said, there’s no climactic moment, so there’s nothing leading to anything. Things are just happening and you don’t feel anything, save for the occasional rush (Although I really liked it when they were first released from the tubes and the sound was completely cut-off… Everything after that was +/-).
3) Production value, especially at the Capitol scenes… We all know the place is some garish, glitz and glamour nightmare… but the production- sets, costumes, extras (baaad background acting) could’ve been classier, to make it more sinister. This was too clownish… But clownish can be done in a nice way (like Tim Burton’s Batman in 1989)… You get what I mean? No? Aack!
4) More eye- candy… Peeta was… like pita… flat…
5) More Battle Royale, less Twilight… although to be fair, the girl playing Katniss was a million times better than Kirsten Stewart. Maybe if we take the hot guys from Twilight and put them into the Hunger Games, we’d get somewhere? I know they toned it down for PG-13, but if the kids have read the books beforehand, shouldn’t their imaginations already preempt all the supposed gore in the movie adaptation?
6) A decent conclusion. Really.

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I read all the books in 2010 and 2011, enjoyed them too. So I was really rooting for the movie not to suck. My date hadn’t read any of the books and he, too, wanted to have a good time.

While Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 85%, I’m too loyal a book- fan to be that forgiving hence I’m giving it a 40%. Sorry, but here’s hoping they make the next one better… And may the odds always be in their favor!

Love,

Karlita

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elementary my dear watson

Dearest ______,

I know the great sleuth never actually said that in Arthur Conan Doyle’s books, but hey, they’ve made some pretty good movies with that line too.

I’m re- visiting a very important part of my childhood so it seems, by re- reading the many stories of Sherlock Holmes. This time, I’ve let down my guard and finally started reading from my I.Pad. It still feels a little weird, since I’ve been wrestling with the idea of putting down real books for a screen, for months now. When I saw that they had almost every piece of classic literature on iBooks (and for free!), I was a goner. My first (re) read on the I.Pad was Jane Austen over the weekend. I swear, my real bookshelf was mocking me from the corner of the room.

So far, the best thing about reading on an electronic device was that Holmes, Watson, Jones, et al kept me company until the wee hours of dawn, even with stark darkness all around my room. I can’t tell you how gratifying that felt… it was like holding up a flash light under bed sheets while reading Nancy Drew way past your bedtime!

From The Red Headed- League, Holmes only had this to say to his long- time friend, the good Doctor:

It saved me from ennui,” he answered, yawning.

“Alas! I already feel it closing in upon me. My life is spent in one long effort to escape from the commonplaces of existence.

These little problems help me to do so.”

And how could we possibly disagree with one who has, albeit fictitiously, lived in a world full of curiosity, challenge, and adventure?

Love,

Karlita

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pastel

Dearest ______,

20120125-122112.jpg * Lighter

20120125-124719.jpg * Angela Carter’s Book of Fairytales

20120125-122124.jpg * Gary Baseman art

20120125-131454.jpg * Polo Ralph Lauren cotton shirt

20120125-122132.jpg * Citron digital watch

20120125-124708.jpg * OPI mini nail lacquer

20120125-122500.jpg * Canele macarons

20120125-131829.jpg * Vivienne Westwood Anglomania x Melissa

20120125-122155.jpg * Ashley Wood 3A toy

Love,
Karlita

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in transit : Christmas Day

Dearest ______,

It’s the first time I’m traveling exactly on Christmas Day. It’s the first time I’m just by myself on Christmas Day too. So that’s two first times in one go.

How is it?, you may ask.

A bit lonely, actually. Not sad. But the alone time can definitely be felt. There aren’t a lot of people traveling during Christmas, so I’ve learned.

Good thing: Less traffic. Less hassle. More room.
Bad thing: You kind of have all this time and space to think of everybody else who are else where.

Oh well, I’m not complaining though. We all know others are having a way harder time.

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But will I ever do this again? Probably not.

Have a meaningful Christmas, my dear, where ever you may be.

I will be writing more letters soon.

Love,
Karlita

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i need a (super) hero

Dearest ______,

When I was only 18 years old, I bought a reprint of Sensation Comics # 1 (originally released in January 1942 under DC Comics) which featured then Super Hero unknown Diana Prince a.k.a. Diana of Themyscira a.k.a. Wonder Woman. When I discovered that the issue was actually her very first cover, I figured that I should at least compound that special item with a humble Wonder Woman collection made up of a vintage Wonder Woman tin lunch box, the 1970’s Lynda Carter series (widely available in VCD at that time), a few comics, a poster, a bubble head, a Justice League art book, etc. I could’ve added more to that list, only I stopped fixating about her. I immediately stopped when I realized that Wonder Woman was actually, well, a little lame.

Seriously, Lasso of Truth? These days, a woman only really needs one thing to get her some truth: emotional blackmail… With maybe a few tears for good measure.

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I haven’t picked up anything Super Hero- related since, with the exception of reading Alan Moore’s Batman: The Killing Joke (which has about the same emotional and literary strength as all good novels out there- highly recommended).

Recently, a friend of mine exchanged his Batman: Hush (Jeph Loeb, Jim Lee) for a few of our Vertigo titles. Aside from a few comments on characterization and storyline editing, all in all, it was a pretty enjoyable read. Enjoyable enough that I am now into the Bat. More so when I realized that more than just another masked vigilante, he actually is quite the detective (and we do love our mysteries)! The same friend has loaned me two other titles for this week’s reading (one with Bane and the other, Dave McKean’s Arkham Asylum… I know I should also mention that A.A. Is written by Grant Morrison, but frankly, I am not quite a fan of how his words just go on and on so pfft), and I cannot wait to tell you all about them. I am dead set on reading the most essential works about this caped- crusader and compiling a review for people who are as interested in throwing a good Batarang, as I am. These are what I have in mind, for next time:

1) The Dark Knight Returns (Frank Miller, Klaus Janson)
2) Batman: Year One (Frank Miller, David Mazzucchelli)
3) Batman: The Long Halloween (Jeph Loeb, Tim Sale)

If you know of more “essential” Batty reads, do tell!

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Love,
Karlita

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books, actually

Dearest ______,

Any excuse to feign intellect and you know I’m there!

For tarts, drinks, and of course, books (actually!), why not pop by?

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I haven’t been to the shop since they moved to a new location last year, but what better time to re-visit them than their 6th big one? Happy birthday, Books Actually!

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For proof of all the time that’s elapsed, please refer to the extremely long hair above.

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http://www.booksactually.com/

Love,
Karlita

PHOTOGRAPHY & TEXT BY AUTHOR UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.