06 February 2011

Today was that Sports Ball match!

There's some kind of game on today, right?

People are always confused by the fact that I don't care at all about football or any other team sports. My explanation for my apathy doesn't help, either. In my formative years, I played baseball (as a southpaw, I served as a mean first base) and dabbled in soccer when I was 10 (perfecting the art of the flop in my sole season) and flag football during middle school (a savant in the one play of one game where the coach put me in at safety). The descriptions above shouldn't be read with bitterness, but with the knowledge that the feelings towards the sports were mutual; I spent the most time playing baseball and performed the best there, but even the novelty of it ran its course while the other two were one and done occasions.

Jon Jones may be able to add
Spider-Man to his list of defeated
opponents if he keeps this up.
Here's how it breaks down as a friend reminded me earlier today: all sports are a metaphor for fighting, so I don't waste my time with the metaphor and stick to straight depictions of fighting, whether they be real or imagined. Back when I played baseball, soccer, or football, I always wanted to be back on that Saturday afternoon in time to watch WWF Wrestling Challenge or WWF Superstars. And while the now WWE has become more of a source of embarrassment in terms too numerous to explain at this point in time, getting into UFC and MMA in general back in 2002 has provided the appeal of two dudes fighting without the constant accusations of the "How can you like it if it's not real?" crowd.

Speaking of fighting, for those of you at Kings Ball last night who were unlucky enough to miss the action at UFC 126, there were some huge news items coming out of that show. First and foremost, with the exception of the Forrest Griffin/Rich Franklin fight, I called all of the winners and even most of the methods. Besides proving myself to be the greatest man among all men, the other big news was Jon Jones getting a title shot in just six weeks. This has taken a card that I wasn't feeling too strongly about to  a must-see event come March 19. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua is a dangerous dude, but he'll be coming off a nearly year-long layoff due to a knee injury to face a guy that has the potential to be an all-time great while making it look easy.

In the meantime, I've been out of the blog-writing business for too long, so here's the last week's rundown.

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and and our rally-shortened Friday were all spent reading through act one of Romeo & Juliet. We witnessed Romeo being emo as all get out, Juliet appearing more practical than most her age, the Nurse embarrassing everyone in sight, and Mercutio providing lots of moments for actors to ACT in the Jon Lovitz style. You should be keeping up with all of the ins and outs of the act with your study guide. It and the act one review are both due on Wednesday, February 9.

Tuesday, we focused on media analysis. Having watched two different versions of the same scene, you compared them both to our own reading of the play, noting the differences in the characters, setting and action. You then focused on one or two details that stood out to you and wrote a paragraph on how and why those details mattered most. This is something I think is really important to do when we study Shakespeare since they were plays meant to be seen. Reading them alone doesn't do them justice.

Monday through Wednesday were spent reading through act three of Macbeth. We see Macbeth slowly declining into madness due to committing regicide and doing everything he can to cover it up. The dichotomies are ripe and ready for the picking on your part, so remember that your act three paragraph is due on Monday, February 7. The plan is to finish act four before the end of the week and that paragraph will be due on Monday, February 14.

Thursday was an utter failure. The plan was to watch act three from the perspective of Orson Welles, but right off the bat in fifth period we witnessed how thoroughly he decided to leave his mark on the production by the sheer number of changes present. We discussed this in sixth period as well, accounting for the mismatched lines, the lack of a feast and Banquo seeming to think that Macbeth was king literally minutes after Duncan was discovered murdered and Malcolm taking off. I did manage to right things a bit, and we took the act three quiz a bit later.

Friday, I managed to free my VHS copy of the Royal Shakespeare Company's version of Macbeth, which is thankfully a lot more accurate, so we watched act three as it is meant to be shown. Notice that their choice for the third murderer, Lennox, will be different than the choice for other versions, most notably Polanksi's version.

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