Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Wednesday Factoid: To Understand You

Today's Wednesday Factoid is: If someone wanted to really understand you, what would they read, watch, and listen to?


This is a hard question because it's quite different from recommending stuff I enjoy. Let me think about that.

What should someone read to understand me:

The Missing Piece Meets the Big O by Shel Silverstein. This is a seemingly simplistic story about a "missing piece" that's looking for another shape with a piece missing out of it that it can fit into and become complete. Eventually, the piece meets "the Big O." And it's not missing any pieces and is complete all by itself. The piece has to learn to become a complete thing--something that can roll on its own--by slowly trying to roll so its corners round out. The last page shows the smaller "piece"--having become a little O--catching up to the Big O and rolling beside it. They're not stuck to each other or completing each other; they're just enjoying life as two separate but complete entities.

The Actor and the Housewife by Shannon Hale. Despite that I'm not a Mormon housewife with a gaggle of kids and I've never had a friendship with a famous actor, I really related to the protagonist of this book and I love that she was able to be FRIENDS with a man, and that they explored what that means. It just says so much about human relationships not falling into categories we expect just because society thinks they should (and how that traps both other people's perceptions of our relationships and OUR perceptions of them as well).

Love, Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. I think this book does a decent job capturing a lot of complicated stuff about people like me. The first book, Stargirl, was written from the point of view of the boy who loved Stargirl, and even though it was great, you still saw her as the admired and the inspirational rather than as the person sometimes. Being other people's manic pixie dreamgirl is not all it's cracked up to be, though, and I think the sequel does a better job showing that the quirkiness thing isn't a show.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. Because I'm silly as hell sometimes and I think this book does a good job with the particular kind of humor I'm about. You may also get a good idea of the kinds of things I think are funny and amusing if you read the illustrated blog/comic Hyperbole and a Half. (Read ONE entry and see if you don't see what I mean.)

The Invisible Orientation by me, for kind of obvious reasons. And it couldn't hurt to read my other books to understand me too, but you cannot buy those yet, so.

What should someone watch to understand me:

Stranger Than Fiction. Much of this story features a very interesting relationship between character and author. Mostly I just like it because it's a really good movie, but it also says some really cool stuff about the creative process, the "reality" of fictional people, and the importance of stories to humanity. LIKE ANYTHING WORTH WRITING, IT CAME INEXPLICABLY AND WITHOUT METHOD!!

Amélie. If you want to understand me, you might get some idea by watching how this girl acts. She really responds to the magic of life created by interaction with humanity (though she seems a little more afraid of it than I am), and has a really active imagination. The ways that I am not like Amélie are still things I appreciate and relate to, and we're sort of silly in a lot of the same ways as well as serious about the same values.

My epic 5000 Subscribers Video involves me answering 88 questions from my subscribers in celebration of hitting 5000 subscribers. I end up saying a lot of stuff that's helpful in understanding me, I think. 

And though I don't think watching my favorite cartoons would actually give you any insights into me in and of itself, conversations with me as of late will probably feature mentions of Steven Universe, so there's that. (Plus it does a good job with the humor that's really genuine and not cruel, which is something I particularly appreciate.)

What should someone listen to to understand me:
  • They Might Be Giants for the musical quirkiness and creativity.
  • Dar Williams and Indigo Girls for the folksy girl stuff.
  • Ani DiFranco for the angry politics that still contain some joy.
  • Tori Amos for the weird magic.
  • The Wicked soundtrack for fiery inspiration.
  • Alanis Morissette for the angsty artist.
  • Tenacious D for the crude humor.    

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