"Color is to the eye what music is to the ear."
- Louis Comfort Tiffany
What does "stained glass" make you think of? Church windows? Fancy light fixtures?
How about gorgeous cakes?
Ooh la la! So soft and pretty; I love the watercolor feel to those colors.
(By Paige Fong)
This cake practically glows, it's so vivid. And I like how the flowers are mirrored in the artwork.
(By Maggie Austin Cake)
I can't imagine the time it took to pipe and paint even one of these layers, much less four.
(By Corrie Cakes)
These cookies look like sun catchers! Doesn't the blue background look like a cloudy sky showing through?
(By Melissa Alt Cakes)
One of my personal favorites today! There's a great little Tiffany museum here in Florida, and this one reminds me the most of some of his windows there. Something about all those glowing greens and rich orangey-browns... Just lovely.
(also by Queen of Hearts Couture Cakes)
Both are amazing, but that blue! WOW.
(By Bittersweet Pastry)
Perhaps more of a mosaic than stained glass, but I'm blown away by the 3D flowers! Such a great design.
And another tile mosaic:
(By Passionate Cakes)
So much detail! Can you imagine how long it would take to place all those tiny pieces?!
These flowers look like they're bursting out of the glass design:
(Also by Maggie Austin Cake)
(By Vinism Sugar Art)
I take it back; I think this is my favorite. The balance of dark and light, the perfectly blended colors, that butterfly...! It belongs in the Tiffany Museum! Or my belly. One of the two, anyway. ;)
Hope you guys enjoyed! Happy Sunday!
Flynn has hired seven attorneys, and his family has established a legal defense fund for him, stipulating that donations from foreign governments or the Trump campaign or business won't be accepted. Isn’t it adorable that Flynn, who worked for a United Nations klatch of clients now insists on a legal defense entirely made in America?
In current public discourse, adorable is mostly what young children and small fluffy animals are, with the range of reference occasionally expanded to include young women, courting couples, or old people being childish. A small sample of today's adorable headlines: "Feel the full range of emotions with this adorable baby Orioles fan"; "ADORABLE: Baby calf and baby human make friends during photo shoot"; "Kelly Clarkson's Adorable Kids Come Visit Her on Set of 'Love So Soft' Music Video"; "Phoenix Zoo welcomes adorable baby giraffe"; "Marcel The Adorable Therapy Dog Brings Joy To People With Dementia"; "Inside Mandy Moore's Adorable Engagement Party With Her Besties"; "You Will Never Guess Prince Philip’s Adorable Pet Name for Queen Elizabeth"; …
But adorable entered socio-political discourse about a month ago, as a sarcastic insult meant to suggest that ordinary people are small, childish, and unworthy of attention other than as a source of amusement.
Louise Linton, the wife of the U.S. treasury secretary, had instagrammed a picture of herself returning by government jet from a quick trip to Fort Knox to look at piles of gold (yes, really), hashtagging elements of her expensive wardrobe — "#roulandmouret pants #tomford sunnies, #hermesscarf #valentionrockstudheels #valentino".
In response, Jenni Miller, described by the NYT as "a mother of three from Portland, Ore", commented "Glad we could pay for your little getaway #deplorable", where deplorable is an echo of Hillary Clinton's "basket of deplorables" comment.
Linton seems to have been stung, because she responded at considerable length:
She uses forms of adorable twice:
Aw!! Did you think this was a personal trip?! Adorable! […]
You're adorably out of touch. […]
The meaning in context is clearly sarcastic — Ms. Miller is framed as one of those little people who are so far beneath Linton that she can view their criticism as amusingly cute, like a mischievous puppy chewing on one of her designer sandals.
Presumably Linton's adorable was primed, consciously or not, by Miller's deplorable. But I wondered at the time whether the word, as well as the attitudes it so effectively expresses, might be common in Linton's social circles. Unfortunately for my curiosity, this word choice clearly communicated more about Linton than it did about Miller, and so given the wave of negative reactions, we're unlikely to see more examples from others like her.
Still, this way of expressing disdain is too effective to be abandoned, and so I've been expecting to see it picked up by others in contexts that are safely distant from Linton's "let them eat cake" effusion.
Michael Flynn is a perfect target, from that point of view — he's not poor, ordinary, small, fuzzy, young, female, elderly, or visually cute. But by suggesting that Flynn's defense-fund appeal is "adorable", Shafer manages to suggest that Flynn is now a powerless and even pitiable player trying in kittenish ways to escape the much larger and stronger forces threatening him.
One of the highlights of my life, let alone Conference, was Neil Fawcett accompanying Kelly-Marie Blundell’s rock set at the Disco on inflatable air guitars from Primark. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a human being look quite so happy and fulfilled. He’s in the bottom right of this video by The Mirror’s Mikey Smith:
— Mikey Smith (@mikeysmith) September 16, 2017
I should add that Neil was not alone. Louise Harris and our Joe Otten also had these fine instruments and were very good, but Neil, who has won awards for his air guitar in the past, was way ahead of the field.
* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings
From Zeyao Wu:
I am intrigued by how the pronunciation of my nickname changed when I moved to Guangzhou [VHM: in the far south, formerly Canton] from Dongbei [VHM: the Northeast, formerly Manchuria].
In Dongbei, all my relatives and my friends called me Yáoyao 瑶瑶, with the second tone of the second syllable becoming neutral. [VHM: the base tone of yáo 瑶 ("precious jade") is second tone]
When I moved to Guangzhou, my friends call me Yǎoyáo 瑶瑶. It seems that this sort of pronunciation is not standard. I think Cantonese speak in this way because they pronounce Mandarin with the tones of Cantonese.
Here are some other examples (the first column is Pekingese [note the pattern of base tone on the first syllable and neutral tone on the second syllable] and the second column is Guangzhou-style Mandarin [note the pattern of base tone on the first syllable and full base tone on the second syllable, not neutral tone as in Beijing]).
dōngxi | dōngxī 东西 ("thing")
máfan | máfán 麻烦 ("trouble; bother")
shítou | shítóu 石头 ("stone")
yīfu | yīfú 衣服 ("clothing")
Judging from Zeyao's evidence, Cantonese-style Mandarin doesn't favor neutral tone for the second syllable of words. Conversely, northerners, especially Pekingese, seem to favor a very reduced neutral tone on the second syllable of words. When Zeyao said "déxing 德行" ("virtue; virtuous behavior; moral honesty / integrity / conduct; shameful; disgusting" — yes, in Pekingese colloquial, in its most mordant form as a condemnation, déxing 德行 means the exact opposite of its overt signification ["virtuous conduct", etc.]), there was hardly any vocalic quality left to the second syllable at all. So it came out sounding like "désh". I walked up right next to Zeyao and had her say it about five times in front of the whole class, and each time it came out sounding like "désh", with even nary a trace of nasalization. Already over 35 years ago, when I first heard it spoken by Beijing shopgirls, I was intrigued by this Pekingese colloquialism, both for the fact that they used it to convey an antonymous meaning, but also for the very unusual pronunciation. Dripping with vitriol, they would begin quite low in the register for a second tone, and then gradually glide upward — in a haughty, drawn-out way — on the first syllable to a rather high, attenuated pitch, then clip it off with a dismissive sibilant: deeéééé↗sh↓.
Comments by Neil Kubler:
Much of Southern China, also Taiwan, uses the pronunciations cited for Guangzhou. There are at least two reasons for this, I think: (1) Cantonese and Southern Chinese topolects in general don't have nearly so many neutral tones as Mandarin; (2) since Mandarin was learned as a second (foreign, non-native) language by these folks, and typically through character texts — which were often recited by the (typically herself not native) teacher with exaggerated tones, they picked up "reading pronunciations."
However, while I think the preceding is true, I think it's also true that (sadly, from my non-Chinese linguistic perspective), the number of neutral tones in Beijing speech is decreasing. More and more younger Beijing residents are speaking Putonghua rather than Beijinghua, and the emphasis of character texts ("reading pronunciations") is strong there also.
Your student said:
"my friends (in Guangzhou) call me Yǎoyáo 瑶瑶".
In Taiwan also there is a curious phenomenon where some personal names and also kinship terms — like baba, mama, gege, jiejie, didi, meimei — all change from their normal tone patterns (with the 1st syllable one of various tones and the 2nd syllable a neutral tone) to this pattern:
TONE 3 + TONE 2 (just like what your student described for her name in Guangzhou. So "daddy" becomes ba3ba2, and so forth.
I haven't been able to find a satisfactory explanation for why this happens.
Judging from Zeyao's evidence, Cantonese-style Mandarin doesn't favor neutral tone for the second syllable of words. Conversely, northerners, especially Pekingese, seem to favor a very reduced neutral tone on the second / final syllable of words. As I pointed out in my analysis of déxing 德行 ("virtuous / shameful conduct") above, when Zeyao pronounced this word à la Pekingese, there was hardly any vocalic quality left to the second syllable.
So, another group of Lib Dem Conference highlights with a shamelessly self-indulgent look back at the fringe meetings I spoke at.
The Child Poverty Action Group fringe
— Shona Cleland (@ShonaCleland) September 18, 2017
On Monday I spoke at a fringe meeting run by the excellent Child Poverty Action Group. The work of groups like CPAG is so important in highlighting the impact of poverty and it’s great that they speak up, even when what they have to say is uncomfortable for us as Liberal Democrats to hear.
The theme of the meeting was around achieving social justice. What would that look like?
The botched implementation of Universal Credit was a major aspect. Along with the appalling family cap, it was cutting the incomes of the poorest families by £3000-£5000.
We had passed policy that very morning that tackled several of the concerns that CPAG had – like restoring a second work allowance and restoring the cuts announced by George Osborne the minute we left the Coalition.
Starring in a video with Malala and Jo Swinson
— ONE Campaign UK (@ONEcampaignUK) 18 September 2017
When I stay starring, we will be in there with 129,999,997 others. The One Campaign’s Count Girls In video aims to highlight the 130 million girls denied an education globally. That’s twice the population of this country – a sobering thought.
As Jo Swinson told the meeting, educating girls is like a silver bullet in terms of economic development, sustainable population and individual freedom. There is no bad aspect to it.
I also spoke at that fringe. I get a bit nervous about public speaking because my gob doesn’t have a backspace key. Often I’ll have my notes with me to refer to but it didn’t work in this situation because it was a stand-up reception and I had to hold a microphone. I just had to pretend I was good at this stuff and speak from memory which I think worked. The only thing is, Jo is a zillion times better and more natural and more polished than I am.
I talked about how it had recently been the 45th anniversary of my first day at school and how there had never been any doubt about the fact that I would go to school. That’s not the case for so many girls. I talked about the wider benefits of education – not just about reading and writing but about learning about your place in the world and how you don’t have to put up with being abused by parents or married off without your consent at a ridiculously young age. To that end, the aid projects that the Tories and the tabloids hate so much do a huge amount of good.
* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings
So, Uber, a company whose business practices have been, thus far, somewhat suspect, have been told by Transport for London that, unless they sharpen up their act, they’ll lose their licence. Cue the more libertarian tendency, who have claimed that millions of people use them and that 40,000 people will lose their jobs.
Time for some perspective.
According to Uber, and let’s assume that their figure is accurate here, 52 million journeys were made in London using their service last year, and that they had 3.4 million users in that time.
That works out as being just over six journeys per Londoner during that period, assuming of course that only London residents used it – a pretty unlikely scenario given its popularity with young people who travel abroad. You wouldn’t describe it as a core part of London’s transport infrastructure at that sort of level, compared to say the 1.35 billion journeys made on the Tube, or the 2.3 billion journeys made by bus or even the 117 million journeys on the DLR, and that’s before you consider the surface rail network, cyclists, car users, those who walk or use other private hire vehicles.
So, Uber isn’t vital, really. It’s convenient, true, but not essential.
As for the job losses, 52 million journeys, divided by 40,000 Uber drivers, works out at five per day per driver, based on a five day week. If the average Uber driver is living off of that, I’d be amazed. There will be, obviously, some full-time drivers, but exaggerating the numbers in support of Uber does nobody any favours. And besides, if Uber passengers are displaced to other travel options, potential jobs are created there.
The hyperbole aside, this is an issue about regulation – the balance between freedom and protection, if you like. You can even argue that it’s a question of choice. Few would argue that the emergence of Uber in particular has not driven improvements in its competition, with new online options for booking taxis popping up, and that makes for more accessible options for potential travellers.
But there has to be a level playing field to ensure that choice continues to exist, and that means a degree of regulation to ensure minimum standards of safety in transportation. It also means that the regulatory body must reasonable access to compliance data, something that Uber have a poor attitude towards, their use of Greyball being just the most prominent example.
Uber are being offered a straightforward choice, comply with those regulations deemed to be appropriate, or not have a licence. For, if their service is financially competitive, it will survive having to obey the same rules as its equivalent competitors. If not, perhaps it isn’t worth the $65 billion it is currently valued at.
A final note. I live in a small village in rural Suffolk. It has no scheduled public transport and, funnily enough, having tried Uber this afternoon, there were no cars available. For those of us without the amazing diversity of choice that London offers, and who have seen swingeing cuts in rural bus services over the past decade, the irony of such uproar over a minute fraction of the overall transportation choice available to Londoners is not lost.
Londoners get a vastly larger share of transport spending than any other part of the country. Perhaps some support towards better transport options in the rest of the United Kingdom is a higher priority?
* Mark Valladares is a regular user of public transport and supports his local minicab firm.
The Devolution agenda looks almost dead in the water to the eagle-eyed journalist looking for the first hint of a Government U-turn on the once flagship Conservative Party policy. 6 months on from the metro-mayor elections the big tests of devolution look to be too hard for its students.
The Northern Powerhouse, once the standard bearer for a new, devolved relationship which will finally bring the capital investment and foreign investment the region so desperately needs, is just a name. Like a flash in the pan celebrity it is now resigned to the history books or to the occasional nostalgic op-ed. Infrastructure investment withdrawal was the last in a list of governmental disappointments.
In the dark, cold corners of the Northern Cities however, things may not seem all lost. Sure, political leadership may be dead in these bastions of ex-industry and trade, but then there was not much of it in the first place. 6 months of political leadership in the hands of a Mayor with devolved budgets and more responsibilities than ever before has left me feeling… nothing.
No mayor policy leads, no new initiatives and certainly nothing to score a single political point in either the town hall or Westminster. Not even my own Manchester, home of science and industry, symbol of human endeavour, birthplace of the alternative can champion devolution under its leader Andy Burnham. That maybe unfair – he did announce the “oyster card for Manchester”, which though promised during the election has failed to live up to billing.
Manchester is the poster-boy of devolution. Its combined authority doesn’t just accept the economic geography of the region, it champions it. The increasing service industry and investment has weathered the financial storm and come out the other side. Cranes and girders litter the skyline. In South Manchester house prices have recovered and booming.
The problem is – that was happening anyway. The poster-boy of the Northern Powerhouse continues regardless of hapless leadership from the Labour Party and inane interest from the Conservative Government. It is being led capably by business leaders and consortiums dedicated to drawing investment to the City.
The devolution agenda is vital in the next political decade. Only combined authorities will have the ability to address the growing housing crisis, shorten the gap between the living standards of the rich and poor, delivering community policing and address the gaping holes in our local NHS and mental health services.
The biggest issues facing you and your family in the regions will have its budget set in London but its decisions made locally. As devolution evolves with it will come the ability to work almost autonomously from London as powers to levy increase.
Leadership and scrutiny are the key to success. Liberal Democrats must lead the way in addressing the major issues facing the Northern Powerhouse. Firstly, we must champion the term, regional government needs the leadership and representation it deserves as budgets navigate Brexit and further cuts. Secondly the Liberal Democrats must pursue a policy agenda that meets the needs and aspirations of the people in our most deprived areas. Finally, we must ensure that our local government base is capable of scrutinising the lacklustre leadership.
In Manchester, only the Liberal Democrats offer an alternative to a hapless Labour Party. But to lead you must first oppose and to oppose you must win. We face 95 Labour Councillors to 1 Liberal Democrat in Manchester. We are busy putting that right.
* Richard Kilpatrick is the Chair of Campaigns for Manchester Withington Liberal Democrats and the Liberal Democrat Council Candidate for Didsbury West, Manchester City Council in May 2018.
Lightning Reviews are back with another trio of quick thoughts on a few selected books. We have a must-have cookbook, a Clueless graphic novel, and a YA book that blends fantasy, Chinese folklore, and high school!
- Lemony chicken with spinach and potatoes: This one is made in a skillet, and comes together very quickly (a number of the recipes are labeled as “weeknight friendly,” which I appreciate!). The flavors are simple but interesting, and I liked the wilted baby spinach. Usually spinach that’s not raw in a salad makes me gag.
- Lime ginger chicken with rice: This made a lot of rice, but it was delicious. There are a bunch of different flavors and the combination didn’t get boring. I wanted to keep eating.
- Italian sausage with peppers, onions, tomatoes, and polenta: I loved this recipe. It’s all cooked on a sheet pan, and the combination of textures and the balance of the sausage, the polenta, and the pepper/tomato mixture was perfect. We’re making this one again very soon.
- Mexican-style spaghetti squash casserole: I’ve made this three times already. I usually hate squash – I think it has a weird aftertaste. But by heating the spices in olive oil, then tossing the spaghetti squash and the chopped vegetables with that oil means that the spices permeates the squash and yay, no weird aftertaste! I have eaten a portion of this casserole every day for lunch for a week and have been very, very happy about it. (Seriously, yum.)
Clueless: Senior Year
author: Amber Benson
While nothing can match the divine quality of the movie Clueless, the graphic novel Clueless: Senior Year is a fun reunion with Cher, Dionne, and Tai, the main characters from the movie. If you haven’t seen the movie, you should watch it before reading the comic, because the comic will make more sense and because everyone should watch Clueless.
The story picks up on Cher’s last day of junior year. One of her teachers tells the students that they are being assigned a project. By the end of their senior year, they have to turn in a report on what kind of adult they want to be. Cher, Dionne, and Tai each get a chance to answer that question in their own chapters while Cher’s romance with Josh, her boyfriend who is now in college, suffers due to her experimentation with being an “activist-environmental-entrepreneurial grown-up.”
Cher’s storyline is, like Cher, adorable. She jumps into her project in the graphic novel with the same overboard enthusiasm with which she jumped into the Tai makeover in the film Clueless. It’s even more fun to see Dionne and Tai come out of Cher’s shadow and develop their own confidence. All three stories are relatable and celebrate both independence and female friendship, with some romance as well.
My favorite thing about this is the art. It matches the aesthetic of the movie but throws in some grunge drab for a visit to Seattle, and soft earth tones for a trip to Tai’s family farm. Movie fans will be pleased to see that Cher’s poufy pen (what did we call those?) makes many appearances, as does some Lisa Frank-inspired art and a lot of cassette tapes. It’s a fun love letter to the movie and to the 1990’s.
– Carrie S
The Epic Crush of Genie Lo
author: F.C. Yee
Y’all, I gotta tell you, I’m getting some great pitches from Twitter these days.
This was billed as a treatment of Journey to the West, and I totally admit that most of what I knew of Journey to the West is from The Forbidden Kingdom, which is not a good movie, and has significant problems, but also has Jackie Chan and Jet Li. As an introduction to “Hey you can read more about this!” for JttW, the film doesn’t suck and the fight scenes are glorious.
Anyway, The Epic Crush of Genie Lo is about our heroine, Genie, a Chinese-American high school student who is in the midst of college prep when a new student shows up and turns everyone’s life upside down, especially Genie’s. Quentin is annoying, and always around, and Things Happen around him….and he’s also the embodiment of the Monkey King. And he’s drawn to Genie because she’s a reincarnation of another member of the Journey’s party. Together, they have to save the world from escaped demons. And also get into college.
This was a FUN READ. Genie is hilarious, and fights so hard against destiny because goddammit, this isn’t in the schedule, and also this Quentin dude is annoying and clingy! I find that romances based on literal destiny can be dicey – I like agency in my romances. But they spend enough time together that Genie gets to know Quentin on his own terms and like him for himself, not just because they are supposed to.
There’s also some great tension between Genie and her mother which explores the children of immigrants dynamic. Add a little magic in there, and things get really fun. Yee also does a really good job of instructing the reader in the salient points of Journey to the West, so if you didn’t grow up with this tale as one of your childhood stories, you can still follow what’s up. I recommend this for anyone looking for fun adventure stories that invert a lot of destiny-romance expectations.
author: Cook's Country
I don’t usually review cookbooks here, but this book has been making me so happy, I had to share. I first borrowed this cookbook from the library, because the Cook’s Country/America’s Test Kitchen cookbooks can be costly, especially if I end up liking one or two recipes. I ended up liking this cookbook so much, I bought my own copy and have been adding recipes to our rotation since it arrived in July.
Y’all. Y’ALL. I love this cookbook. I love recipes where I can put a bunch of stuff on a sheet pan or in a dutch oven and let heat and time do their thing while I do all the other things I have to do. Some of the recipes are more hands-on than others, but the ones I’ve made I’ve enjoyed so much. Each section focuses on one container or method of cooking: skillets, sheet pans, dutch ovens, casserole dishes, roasting pans, and slow cookers. There are a set of recipes designed for each method, and I’ve tried several so far.
If you’re a vegetarian, alas, there aren’t too many recipes in here for you. Most involve meat or fish. And if you eat zero carbs, like no potatoes, rice, or pasta, the pickings get a little sparse.
But for my weeknight cooking rotation, this cookbook has made me so happy. I am trying new recipes in the next few weeks, and I’ll report back how they go. I love the ease and convenience of using one method or container for the food preparations, and so far the flavors and combinations have been terrific.
– SB Sarah
by Ian McLellan Hunter, John Dighton, and Dalton Trumbo (screenplay)
Sarah: I had my hair cut this week, and as I got in the car, I thought that having very short hair is very appropriate for watching this film.
“And Introducing Audrey Hepburn…” Oh, we have met, I assure you.
I love the long opening credits. And Edith Head did the costumes! Of course she did.
This is a trope that works for me – individual bound by a massive weight of duty and expectation finds a temporary escape to be themselves or the opposite of their lives. It’s a lovely mix of behind-the-scenes and public self vs. private self, both of which I love.
CarrieS: If I were going to present her with stuff it would be cookies, tennis shoes, and a puppy.
“I’m just being veeery happyyyy” yes dear, I know that’s exactly what happens to me when I eat creme brulee. No lie.
Sarah: I also love the tension in the boring “please meet everyone” scene where she nearly loses a shoe, and then the Cinderella reference when she can’t get it back on in time. Adorable. Also the relief that they helped her avoid a breach of protocol.
Though I question the protocol that requires all these people from different countries bowing to her
CarrieS: What is it about Italy and romance? How many romance movies have we looked at so far with an Italian theme?
Sarah: That said: here is some fun, though not sourced trivia:
The Embassy Ball sequence featured real Italian nobility, who all donated their salaries to charity. The reporters at the end of the film were real, too.
CarrieS: If there’s anything we should have learned from romantic comedy it’s, “Never make a bet.”
“What would you do for $5000” is a line with strange overtones when it’s spoken by one guy to another while grappling in a bar.
Sarah: “It’s nerves. Control yourself, Ann.”
Bugger off, lady! Girl is dramatically upset and it’s totally earned. And she gets a royal sedative.
Sarah: Nighttime gallivanting with a sedative in your bloodstream seems like a bad idea. But if you’re going to pass out on a low fence, Gregory Peck is the best thing that could happen, I think.
CarrieS: Peck improvised the Mouth of Truth so her reaction is genuine.
Sarah: I love the “dance” on the staircase going to his room.
“I’m terribly sorry to mention it, but the dizziness is getting worse.” I love the absurd politeness. I’m going to say this all the time now.
I love that he thinks he holds all the cards (ha ha) and he does not.
CarrieS: Gregory Peck should always be wet and disheveled.
Sarah: The haircut scene is one of my favorites. When I last donated my hair, and my stylist put my hair in a ponytail to cut it all off, even though we both knew what we were doing, I was so nervous, and so was she. Also why the hell is he back-combing her hair before he cuts it off?
And short bangs! She looks so good with short bangs. Interesting pacing note: she gets her hair cut at nearly exactly half way through the film. She buys ice cream and flowers at about 1:02 and the film is about 2 hours long. Epic change midway through!
CarrieS: Um they totally just smashed up a lot of other people’s stuff, people who probably didn’t have a lot of stuff to spare, and lied their way out of paying for it and that is a jerk move, also, how old are these characters supposed to be? Peck you are a little stalkery.
CarrieS: “You should always wear my clothes.”
“It seems I do.”
Sarah: I love how Joe is early on a varying level of jerk, and slowly does something unselfish. I also like the way the film parallels itself. Her princess agenda includes going to all these sites to improve trade relations and connections on one level, and her tour of Rome in semi-disguise is more personal, and focuses more on how real people in Rome live day to day. She’s supposed to be given a car which she will refuse, but then she steals a scooter and drives it all over Rome (and makes a big mess – geez, woman). And the movie begins with her dancing at a ball, distant, silent, and impersonal from each person, and midway through she’s on a barge dancing (scandalously!) close with Joe and actually talking to him. There’s the distance of her role contrasted with the intimacy and experience of her day as a (sort of) anonymous individual.
Her realization that her job and her role mean a lot to the people of her country: “Were I not aware of my duty to my country and my family, I would not have come back tonight, or indeed ever again.” Also: she’s wearing a dark almost-black dressing gown instead of white silk — o RLY?
CarrieS: The grab and hug just kills me. Every. Damn. time.
Sarah: They do a lot of subtle face reactions and they get my right in the hearty feels.
Also, I LOVE that the first question is like, “So, princess, what do you think about a European Union?” Well, let me tell you some things from the future! You’d better sit down.
Expressions of personal affection through bland press statements – I am terribly sorry to mention it, but I am a puddle of feels right now.
“I will cherish my memories here as long as I live.” I’ve seen this movie a mess of times, and I am all sniffly.
CarrieS: It’s an A movie, obviously. Am helpless before its powers.
Sarah: Meeting the press contrasting the opening meeting of the dignitaries — this movie’s parallels are so well done. My catnip, so much catnip.
And then he stays there, waiting longer than anyone before he leaves. Oh, gosh, this movie works so well on me.
I just did the dumbest thing: I wondered if there were fanfic for this movie. Can you imagine such a ludicrous question? Of course there is!
This is so timelessly effective and charming, and gets me every time I watch. It’s easily an A for me.
Complete aside for trivia via IMDB: The original writer, Dalton Trumbo, was blacklisted as one of the legendary Hollywood Ten, and therefore could not receive credit for the screenplay, even when it won the Academy Award for Best Motion Picture Story. Instead, his friend, Ian McLellan Hunter, one of the writers of the final screenplay, took credit for the original story and accepted the Oscar. Hunter did, however, pass on the $50,000 payment he received for the job on to Trumbo. Trumbo’s wife, Cleo, was finally presented with the award in 1993, long after his death in 1976. The Oscar she received was actually a second one, because Hunter’s son wouldn’t give up his father’s Oscar. Thus, two awards for Best Motion Picture Story of 1953 exist. The story credit was corrected to credit Trumbo when the restored edition was released in 2002, nearly fifty years after the original release.
The drunken Ann recites a poem, “If I were dead and buried when I heard your voice, beneath the sod my heart of dust would still rejoice.” which prompts Joe to declare her “well read.” The poem is actually an original work by Dalton Trumbo, the blacklisted writer.
Sarah: The history of the blacklist in Hollywood is both fascinating and very eerie given current political media climate. I really enjoyed this series from You Must Remember This devoted to the history of the blacklist. If you’d like to know more about it, I hope you enjoy it.
Is Roman Holiday a romantic classic for you? Or does it not hold up to modern scrutiny? Let us know what you think!