Thelma and Louise


Every time Thelma and Louise is on, we can't resist watching it again. This is one of our favourite scenes in the movie.  We especially love Louise's line to the trucker, "You know good and damn well what I'm talking about." Love these kick-ass women. … [Read more...]

The Ivy League Hustle (I Went to Princeton, Bitch)


The Ivy League Hustle (I Went to Princeton, Bitch) video starring Nikki Muller, actress/comedian, addresses some interesting points about college education: the student debt accumulated with earning a college degree, the lack of job opportunities for a college graduate, and she points out that college educated women are often a threat to men, as witnessed in the opening sequence. The other interesting point of this video is that Muller points out that there are few avenues for people who are … [Read more...]

Charlie Chaplin’s House for Rent in Venice Beach


Charlie Chaplin was a comedic genius, and an astute businessman.  He founded United Artists with Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and D.W. Griffiths. Wouldn't it be a treat to stay in the house that he once lived in?  It would be great inspiration, and who knows, maybe it's a good place to work.  We were surprised by how small it looks to be, but Venice Beach is filled with these smaller, charming homes. If the weather's nice year round, and you can be at the beach morning, noon, and … [Read more...]

Angry Music: Makes Us Feel Better?


There are certain films and TV shows whose characters so closely resemble me at times, that sometimes friends and family ask me, "Do the writers of these shows know you?" The names of those films and TV shows shall remain nameless for now, there's no need to incriminate myself anymore than I already have, but I will admit that at times, I do say and do things that are a bit out there.  It's not always bad (maybe not always good either), but out there. I will admit that when watching the … [Read more...]

Ernest Hemingway’s Toronto Connection

Hemingway Apartment Building in Toronto

We are both fascinated with where the writers whom we both admire once lived and worked.  The combination of talent and environment demonstrated right on the page of a writer's work resounds like an invitation to further explore them in that environment, so sometimes we do. Of course, a serious student of the nurture vs. nature theory would point out the flaws that looking at one of the possibly many places a writer has lived as having left any sort of mark on them as writers, and on the … [Read more...]

Traits That Make the Byronic Hero So Appealing


In teaching Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, it's impossible not to discuss the Byronic Hero, and how this type of hero permeates not only Gothic romances like this one, but romantic literature in general.  The general characteristics of Lord Byron himself, the real life figure behind the type have prevailed over time.  Handsome, intelligent, connected, troubled, and artistic, he was in much demand in society.  Even then, he was considered to be a rogue (a word that should most definitely be … [Read more...]

Fun Facts About Female Chick Lit Writers


Many critics criticized the Chick Lit genre when it first became popular (don't they feel silly now?).  As we know, Chick Lit has continued to grow in popularity, and continues to entertain readers all over the world. While many new writers continue to emerge, some of the first female writers to break onto the Chick Lit scene are listed below (we know there are others but these are some of our favourites), and we've included some fun facts about each of them. 1. Helen Fielding, author … [Read more...]

Mr. Darcy and You?


A friend of ours forwarded this to us.  It's a take on the lake scene from a film adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice (1813) and instead of Darcy falling for Elizabeth Bennet, he falls for a modern-day girl named Amanda (everywoman). While it is most definitely cheesy, it's also kind of cute.  And we do love a hero with a British accent. [youtube] … [Read more...]

Why the hate for Catherine Earnshaw?

Wuthering Heights

"I hate her.  I just wish she'd hurry up and die," said the sweet-faced girl in my class as she shuddered with disgust. "Why do you hate Catherine Earnshaw so much?" I wanted to know. And she gave me reasons, with others chimming in their shared or contrasting opinions.   What was it about this heroine from Bronte's Wuthering Heights that was causing my ordinarily calm and reasonable students to have such a reaction? It's hard to pinpoint because I realize that I have a love/hate … [Read more...]

What will happen to bookstores?


One of Toronto’s bookstores is closing soon, the Toronto Star reported today.  I mentioned it in my Grade 12 English class this afternoon, which led some of the students to ask me if books would soon be obsolete.  They seemed concerned. People often talk about the future and as more and more bookstores close, it is a question that book-lovers do wonder about. My answer: “Maybe the book form we know today will change, and eventually be sold only at Specialty shops, but books themselves will … [Read more...]