Once again we find ourselves with a large gap in between posts, and once again I offer the same excuse. I’m just so tired. Due to this posts often get put so way behind on my priorities, but fret not you’ll get random posts.
Last month was a bit of a blur for me but there were some stand outs amongst the noise.
Sia – This is Acting
I have always been aware of Sia, especially her early work within Australia, however her last album and this new one have grabbed my attention. Where 1,000 Forms of Fear was a evolution of her personal style, This is Acting is Sia hitting her mark. The album is solid from start to end, I can say that I am a fan of every song on the album and often find myself sneaking a headphone in and listening to it at work.
One thing you can always count Sia to be is lyrically impressive; This is Acting is once again testament to her emotive skills as a songwriter. I would definitely recommend people press play and give this a listen.
Stand outs on the album for me are: Move Your Body, Unstoppable, Broken Glass and the heart wrenching Alive.
I have only recently become aware of this Jamberry Nails, which operates with a similar structure to Avon, Tupperware, and Partylite. The product for this company is nail wraps, which is essentially nail stickers. If you are anything like me, having and maintaining pretty nails is very far outside of my skill set. With Jamberry wraps though, you can have pretty nails will minimal fuss.
Once you have your wraps it is a small manner of preparing your nails, and then using a blow dryer to soften the wraps. Once you have done this, they will simply stick to your nails and you have only to spread them across and them file the remaining wrap away.
Due to my teeny tiny nails, I had to purchase the junior or children edition of the wraps. Do not get me wrong though, they are beautiful. Jamberry says that the nails last up to three weeks but with the two manicures I have done they tend to start giving out at the week mark. Mine had started to shift and lift, getting caught in my hair, however more than half remain in tact for longer. To combat this I have simply been reapplying new nails to the ones that have had to be removed.
If you find the idea of applying multicoloured patterns to your nails, then fear not, just wack some Jamberry wraps on them.
Penguins of Madagascar (TV Series)
I have a weakness for cheesy animated TV shows, if you don’t believe me please refer to my Top 5 list. You will find no cheesier than the Penguins of Madagascar TV series, the show exists outside of the film timelines as the penguins find themselves back at the New York zoo alongside King Julian.
Each episode is full of the hi-jinks of the four main penguins as they navigate the zoo and larger world around them. The show is particularly enjoyable as each bit size, ten minute episode is just enough to whet your appetite. The show presents a nice opportunity for viewers to explore the personalities and relationships between characters, which has been lacking in any other Madagascar installments to date.
If you feel like having something fluffy and cute to watch while you do something else, the Penguins of Madagascar TV series comes highly recommended.
Also I just want to wish myself a Happy 101 Posts!
A sweet, kick-started, gender fluid, cat themed, dating sim that will melt your heart.
About: Hustle Cat is a dating sim created by the team at Date Nighto. Originally on Kickstarter, the game is one that pushes past gender binaries and provides male, female, and trans pronouns for the main character. In addition to this there are two custom characters that you can select from which, once again, allow you to select from neutral representations and racial characteristics.
The story is one that sees the main character start work at a cat cafe and fall under a witches curse. I can’t go into too much detail as it will give away a few spoilers, but the art and style of the game is adorable. I loved every character and could not wait to romance each character. Available on Steam, Itch IO, and on the Date Nighto website, the game is a cute, fun, and very welcoming dating sim.
Why: I love to support LGBTQ projects on Kickstarter and this one had my attention from the moment I saw it. As a fan of dating sims, one that let me romance everyone no matter my gender was one that I couldn’t wait to play.
Best bits: I do love the cute cats and the character reaction images. The game is tame in that it does not have any H or adult material but the kiss pictures are just so sweet.
Thoughts so far: I have romanced two of the characters, Finely and Hayes, and cannot wait to explore the other characters stories. The fast forward function is also a great feature as it allows you to skip over the story that you have already played through.
I really enjoyed being able to play one game as a guy and pairing up with Hayes, and then playing as a woman and pairing with Mason, only to play again as trans and whoo Reese. If Date Nighto decide to create any more games that have this feature I will be the first to support them!
Hey everybody, Bingo!!
I still have six more boxes to do but I figured since I started this Bingo Card on January 31, I still have a month to go 🙂 No pressure, I’ve got plenty of time.
Family of Lies: Sebastian by Sam Argent.
When I decided to read this, I had been devouring a lot of fantasy novels, however this novel proved to be above and beyond all that I had been reading. Family of Lies: Sebastian is a high fantasy book that follows the journey of Sebastian, a snarky wizard who unbeknownst to him, saves a Prince’s life.
For me, the best part of this novel is Sebastian himself. The character is just so snarky and wonderful, you will find it difficult not to sit there with a big silly grin on your face. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a funny, high fantasy novel that makes you laugh almost as much as it makes your sigh.
The Secret of Mermaid Cove by Megan Derr.
I am a big fan of Megan Derr, so any title of hers is going to be a huge draw card for me. The Secret of Mermaid Cove, however was even more so for it is not only a fairy tale retelling but a lesbian re-imagining of the Little Mermaid, almost. The blurb had me intrigued and even though the original tale has been a bit done to death, I found the novella refreshing.
Its been a month or so after reading it, but the most striking for me was the perspective from which the story was written. The characterisation of Sophia was so clear cut and it made a strong impression. The Secrets of Mermaid Cove comes highly recommended, if you’re new to the LGTBQ romance fiction, Derr’s novella is a lovely and quick way to start.
A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix
This book has been on my to read list for a while, I purchased it at the Newcastle Writers Festival in March and since then I have glanced at it continually, thinking ‘one day.’ If not for the Space Opera box I do not think I would have gotten around to reading this as soon as I did.
I really enjoyed this book, it’s a departure from Nix’s normal fantasy work and I must say the different direction is a welcome one. The novel creates such a rich and vibrant world in which the protagonist, Khemri, comes to terms with being not only a Prince but the wider political implications of the extended systems. I would highly recommend any of Nix’s work but if you are normally drawn to Sci-Fi, I would suggest starting with this book before plunging into Nix’s rich backlog.
Ars Amatoria or The Art of Love by Ovid
B.C.E. Book means Before Common Era, so with this in mind I trolled through my ancient history books to find the book. Now before you say anything, yes, yes, I know Ovid’s The Art of Love is from the first century. I ummed and arghed about this one but since Ovid is a favourite of mine, I decided to bend the rule by a century and allow it.
If you haven’t read it, The Art of Love is part instructional guide for women on the art of seduction and as well as for men. In amongst all of this is moments where Ovid offers glimpses into Roman society as well as professing his love and sometimes disdain for his mistress.
If you ever had the inkling or need to read an ancient text, I would definitely recommend anything by Ovid. The Art of Love in particular is a very accessible text that is not only enlightening about the culture but Ovid himself.
A Sci-Fi, choose-your-own-adventure game.
About: Sequel to Mass Effect, Mss Effect 2 continues the story of Commander Shepard. At the beginning of the first game, you get to create a custom character; I decided to be a lady and one unintentional facial feature was very prominent cheek-bones. It has been many a time while playing the game that my partner ask, ‘How’s Cheek-bones going?’
Throughout the game you are given decisions, these decisions fall under the categories of ‘Renegade’ and ‘Paragon.’ Which is pretty much, ‘Bad’ or ‘Good.’ The decisions you make, which can be as simple as how nice you are to a character, all the way to choosing who lives or dies, impacts on those around you. That is, your attitude changes how characters develop over the three games.
For me, the main draw card of the game is the highly individual nature of the story. That is, every game is different, with players being able to make decisions that affect and alter the story of the game.
Why: One of my video game bingo squares, is ‘Complete Mass Effect 3,‘ so I have been slowly making my way through the series. It took me a while to get through Mass Effect 1 but at the moment I am flying through Mass Effect 2.
Best Bits: I am officially in love with the characters Jack, Thane, and of course Joker. The voice acting of Jennifer Hale as FemShep is simply spectacular! FemShep is definitely the best Shep!
Thoughts so far: I am really loving this game! The whole series is such a wonderful experience. I would highly recommend this game to anyone (of any level of experience as the game has an easy mode) because the story of Shepard is too good to miss.
I can’t believe it, my year is almost up! I started this in February and now have four months left to read ten books. With this in mind, this post is a super rushed catch up.
Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger.
I read this book for my book club and was surprised. I had always envisioned what the book was about from the descriptions other people have given me. It was nothing like any of them. I can say that I did not enjoy this book, however it was interested to finish the book and research the history and context surrounding the book being banned.
Charmed Life by Diana Wynne Jones.
My monthly book club allows members to select the book for the month, on my month I decided to dedicate the month to Dianna Wynne Jones. Any of her books could be read, and straight away I had to trouble of picking between Charmed Life and Howl’s Moving Castle. However, I have re-read Howl a number of times but have not read the first of the Chrestomaci since the very first time. The book was everything I remembered, Jone’s style is one that not only takes me back to my early teenage years but she creates such wonderful worlds. I do plan to continue reading the series at one point.
Bravest Warriors Volume 1 by Joey Comeau (Author), Mike Holmes (Illustrator), Pendleton Ward (Creator) and Ryan Pequin.
This one is cheating a little bit because Bravest Warriors is technically a web based show not a TV show. However, I am willing to cut myself a little slack and allow this choice. Bravest Warriors is an amazing show that I have previously mentioned and this awesomeness is one that translated over into the graphic novel. The graphic novel (a collection of the individual comics) is funny, pretty, and made me want to re-watch the two seasons of the show. Now more than ever I am anticipating the third season.
No matter the Wreckage by Sarah Kay.
I bought this book with no prior knowledge of the poets style or poems. I must say that I enjoyed the book. The poetry was different and lovely, with Sarah Kay’s style creating a distinctive but gentle tone. The stand out poems for me were often the smaller ones that dealt with smaller moments in life, such as the incoming Winter and staying in your PJs all day. I will definitely keep my eye on Sarah Kay and look forward to her next publication!
I have officially hit the over a year mark. As such to avoid confusion I shall have to add the year to the title. Whenever I sit down to do these posts, I always feel like I haven’t done much or enough to warrant such a post, however I do find that as soon as I actually think about it I have interacted with so many things that I can write about. Sow without further ado, I present a small snippet of my September.
Christmas Organisational Lists
I have a thing for lists; I love making them. For a while now I have been on the lookout for the perfect Christmas brainstorming/purchase list in order to track my ideas and purchases. It took a while but I finally found one I liked.
The Holiday Gift Tracker and To Buy List from I Heart Planners are amazing. I have these little gems hanging up on my wall and they have really helped me get my head wrapped around my budget and potential presents for people. Everyone is different, so some people might not like this design, so if you are looking for your own printable, I suggest looking around. There are so many free options out there.
Despite having this game for almost a year, I have finally finished it. I have been a long time fan of Pokemon games but for the first time, I have managed to actually finish the game. Since my humble beginnings with Pokemon Blue, I have never been able to defeat the Elite Four. Time and time again, I would find myself stuck on the almost obligatory dragon trainer. I believe that I was able to defeat the Elite Four this time because of the XP sharer that the game has, otherwise it would have been the same old story of me having one super powerful Pokemon and five other less powerful, one hit kill, Pokemon.
I really enjoyed Pokemon Y as the addition of roller skates really sped up the game for me. Additionally the ability to customise your character was such a welcome change. I loved being able to change the hair and clothes of my character, not to mention being able to create a video! I finally got the motivation to finish the game because of the Video Game Bingo Card my partner made me, I have now completed 6 of the 25 squares.
During this month, I got to see the Australian adaption of the Matilda Musical. Based on the Roald Dahl book of the same name, the musical follows the story of Matilda, who grows up in a not so loving family and is exceptionally smart. Over the course of the book, movie and musical, Matilda comes to realise she possesses fantastic mental powers and begins to set things right in a world of wrong adults. With music and lyrics by Tim Minchin, the musical adaption of the book is a pleasure to watch.
While some elements of the musical differ drastically from the book, it is nevertheless an interesting and entertaining watch. As soon as I had left I had lyrics stuck in my head. Stand out songs for me are ‘Miracle,’ ‘Revolting Children,’ and ‘When I Grow Up.’ I would highly recommended the musical for anyone who was interested.
They’re so bad, it’s good.
About: It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is an American television show that follows the lives and misadventures of terrible five people as they run a bar and, put simply, are horrible to each other. The draw card of this show is the truly awkward and cringe worthy moments that litter the show. With episode titles such as ‘Frank Sets Sweet Dee on Fire,’ ‘Who pooped the bed?’ and ‘The Gang Finds a Dumpster Baby,’ the show seems to tackle every taboo, off colour, uncomfortable topic and just run with it.
Why: I have been an avid watcher from the airing of the third season, however have fallen behind. Recently I found out that my partner has not seen any of the show, so of course we had to marathon it.
Best Bits: DAY MAN! A-AR-AHHH! FIGHTER OF THE NIGHT MAN! A-AR-AHHH!
Thoughts so far: I have hit Season six and am getting up to the episodes that I have missed. I must admit, I still love the gang so much, in a sad, terrible, terrible way.
This post is a mixed bag as I read The Big Over Easy a few months ago but only just recently finished Love for the cold-blooded and Very Good Lives. Additionally I am in the middle of choosing a few books to fit in the categories as well as finally getting around to reading my previously chosen ones (New Poet I’m looking at you).
The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde
I have previously read this book many years ago and liked it so much that I picked it for my book club choice. The book is my second hang read as I picked up my copy at a local book shop, the copy is a particularly large one which is itself large print. I usually dislike reading large print books but for the $2 that I paid for the book, I gladly put up with it.
If you have never read Fforde before, you will be surprised by the intertwining and extremely nuanced plots at play. I found with this book, that there were lots of little nods and jokes made about nursery rhymes and other such tales, some I got some I didn’t pick up until later when the reference was unmissable.
I absolutely loved this book. Adored even. The story focuses on Pat West, the son of a famous supervillain who as the title suggests, accidentally finds himself dating a superhero. The story is a classic good vs evil one but it is all so fluid, no one side is portrayed as the better. Both are given equal time and justification. Which leads perfectly into how the book fits in with the chosen category.
The books fits in with the bisexual character as the main character, Pat, is you guessed it, bisexual. I really enjoyed this book as sexuality is all so fluid and no big issues are ever made about it, it just is what it is and the story treats it as the most normal thing in the world. I found this so very refreshing! To make things even better, the story and humour had me hooked!
Very Good Lives by J.K. Rowling
Very Good lives is a print version of J.K. Rowling’s commencement address at Harvard university. The book offers readers visual representations of the ideas that she discusses alongside the text of her speech. One of my favourite quotes from the book is in relation to the different ways in which people can live and value their life.
“As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters. I wish you all very good lives.”
I was given this book as a gift from friend and enjoyed it a lot. The speech itself is very inspiring and the book is very visually pleasing.
It has been a whole year since my very first Small Snippet post! A whole year! Looking back on that post, I still enjoy Paloma Faith, still use and love the Glasshouse candles, and … need to watch the third season of Veep. In fact I would say I am in need of a complete re-watch. I honestly cannot believe it has been a year since I started this reoccurring post, it has made things so much easier and (I think) it is an interesting and quick read.
Additionally it has been six months since my last Small Snippet post.
Honestly that blows my mind, this year has flown by so fast! I feel like I should do a post to make up for all that time, but I will instead try and do an overview at the end of the year.
Looking back at my last Small Snippet, I was posting pictures of my Lego creator pack. I don’t have the time to take a picture of the last version of that set (which still has pride of place on my book case) but I will try and get a picture up next time.
BYOB is little gem that has just recently had a successful Kickstarter campaign, but you can also pick it up for free and print it out yourself. The concept of the game is that everyone brings their own book (ala the title) and with gameplay similar to Cards Against Humanity, everyone gets to pick phases and excerpts from their text that match card prompts.
I have played this game about five times and each has been so very different. It really comes down to the books that you play with, so unlike CAH which has the potential to get stale, Bring Your Own Book is one that places a lot more choice with the players. I would highly recommended this game for any fan of reading, card games, and anyone who just likes taking things out of context.
Netflix just added Space Jam to the Australian library and as soon as I saw it I was just flooded with so many memories of all the hype and merchandising that was the film when it came out. After a very terrible day at work, I felt like it could only be redeemed by some Space Jam. I was not wrong.
There were so many more jokes I got, especially in relation to all the fourth wall jokes that mention other companies and knowing the producer. While the story did seem not as grand as I remember it still nevertheless lived up to the hyped up memories of my primary school self.
True Survivor (from Kung Fury) by David Hasselhoff
If you haven’t heard of Kung Fury, you really need to stop reading and click this link. It is an amazing film that is an amazing mix of 80s nostalgia and intense amazing graphics. ‘True Survivor’ is the accompanying song of the film, with pretty much everything in it screaming the 80s. I haven’t really given The Hoff much of a listen but I just cannot stop listening to the song.
Once you have finished watching the original movie, you should do yourself a favour and watch the clip underneath.
So depressingly enthralling I can’t look away. Must. Binge. Watch.
About: A Netflix original, BoJack Horseman is an animated show about the life of anthropomorphic horse BoJack as he struggles to live his life after the success of his 1980s television sitcom. Voiced by Will Arnett, Bojack is a cynical, narcissistic, sarcastic, self-obsessed, wreck of a horse whose life always seems to be on the verge of falling apart. The story of the show is one that revolves around the writing, release, and aftermath of a ghost written BoJack biography.
The supporting cast of the show features the voice acting talent of Alison Brie, Amy Sedaris, Patton Oswald, Kristen Schaal, and a slew of almost random guest appearances. The show is definitely a dark comedy that will often start with a joke only to end on a moment of profound sadness. The show may at first be off-putting but you should persevere, the show has a very strong emotional core
Why: I was sick at home with an ear infection and thought, why not. Now I can’t think of a reason to stop.
Best Bits: I enjoy almost every scene with Tod, HOLLYWOO, and Princess Caroline’s boyfriend never fails to get me laughing. Also Herb, for me Herb was the turning point for the show.
Thoughts so far: I am really enjoying the show and am about half way through Season Two. In my self-professed vegging that I do after work, BoJack Horseman is a happy companion.