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Music for a Sunny, Neekly Day

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Today is the first cloudless day I’ve seen for far too long, and in a vitamin D-induced fit of euphoria have decided to give you a list of music I’ve been playing throughout the day that reflects my mood. Ready?

517ftTJumaL._SL500_AA300_Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra (lyrics)

There is no better song to describe my current situation.

Sun is shinin’ in the sky / There ain’t a cloud in sight / It’s stopped rainin’ / Ev’rybody’s in a play / And don’t you know / It’s a beautiful new day (hey, hey)

 

A Beatlesque rock anthem with excessively upbeat backing and chordal structure. Plus, it was featured in Doctor Who Series 2 Episode 10, “Love and Monsters” as main character (and avid ELO fan) Elton Pope’s favorite song. There’s a scene at the beginning of the episode in which he is vlogging and starts to dance to it in his bedroom, which was quite funny. And stop hating on Love and Monsters! Yes, the Abzorbaloff was atrocious. But that’s not what the story was about. Plus, Moaning Myrtle!

cd-coverI’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers (lyrics)

Listening to this song, I feel…enlivened. It’s got a simple chord pattern and repetitive lyrics, a bouncy tempo and Scottish accents. All in all, it’s a cheery song that adds a smile to the day.

Plus, it was featured in this awesome Doctor Who Cast and Crew video, which was part of the David Tennant and Russell T. Davies wrap party.

tumblr_mgxqdoS7Gh1r2st53o1_coverGood Morning Sunshine by Alex Day (lyrics)

My favorite part of this song has to be the backing chorus. There’s a touch of sadness in it, but that only amplifies the overall warmth of the song.

     http://youtu.be/W7q1bHK8te0

Good Day Sunshine by The Beatles (lyrics)

All right, while not technically a neeky band or song, the Fab Four still deserve a spot on this playlist with “Good Day Sunshine,” a poppy tribute to love in the sunlight.

  

This Isn’t Hogwarts! by Hank Green (lyrics)

Though the first words of the song are “I hate this place,” the song is quite fun and it’s just awesome to see Hank rocking out about Hogwarts. A bit less playful and somewhat more angsty than the previous four songs I mentioned, “This Isn’t Hogwarts” really represents America’s public school system very well. It’s also just a great song for neeks, Nerdfighters, Harry Potter fans, and people who enjoy an amusing, well-written song.

Primeday by Teddiefilms

This parody of Rebecca Black’s “Friday” has got to be the best remake I have ever seen of an absolutely terrible song. Take “Friday;” remove all tween romance, high school, and drama; add Star Wars and small chubby dude playing Leia, and what do you get? The masterpiece of modern YouTube that is “Primeday.”

That’s all! I hope you enjoyed my list of several songs that embodied today in all its sunshine-filled glory.

 

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Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Spoilers)

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Rating:

Before I begin, I would like to make several comments regarding the nature of this novel. First of all, The Fault in Our Stars, despite the fact that the narrator disdains upon such titles, is in truth a ‘cancer book.’ To be fair, it’s not an up-ending, inspiring tale of dreams achieved and goals met, wishes come true and everlasting exuberance found – but nonetheless it is a standard-bearer for the fast-emerging genre of teen fiction the Daily Mail has dubbed “sick lit.” The title character, Hazel Grace Lancaster, is introduced as a suffering victim yet pities herself not; she endures the trials that define her existence as a cancer patient – namely the deaths and sacrifices of her friends, as well as her own unstable condition – and emerges from the ordeal sadder but wiser, and potentially more hopeful about her wretched existence. Thus some reviewers might afford it more praise than it is due purely because it details the suffering of the terminally ill and does not attempt to gloss over the gory details for the sake of a glittering, felicitous end. I shall attempt not to allow such precepts to cloud my objectivity, though neither shall I endeavor to present this book in an unduly negative light.

I would also like to point out that The Fault in Our Stars is a deeply moving, poignant novel. So much so, in fact, that immediately after reading it I was compelled to flip the TV on to watch dazedly as the heroes of Torchwood shot at some aliens for forty-five senseless minutes. It’s that kind of book – one that presents ideas in such a way that we readers must take cover in mindlessness to shield ourselves.

The Fault in Our Stars fills me with a sense of uncertainty. Upon finishing it, I wondered if I should try to capture my thoughts about it right away, or wait and let them percolate. Would it be less meaningful on a re-read? Is it a book to re-read? Or one to preserve forevermore as a series of first impressions?

The last letter from Augustus Waters to Van Houten, though intended to place a small glow of optimism where the eloquent young man once lived within the heart, only amplified the hopelessness of the entire situation. ‘You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices. I hope she likes hers.’ To which the femme mourant, as it were, responds with a resounding and overtly wedding-referential ‘I do, Augustus. I do.’ I leave wondering how long it will be till Hazel kicks the bucket. Will she go out with dignity?

I’d rather not end this review on a negative, snarky note, because it is possible that I have been stubbornly cynical to deflect the wave of insight that this book has set upon me. Let me say this: The Fault in Our Stars is a well-written, earnest novel that never felt slow. Even the lengthier scenes had energy, and that is a difficult endeavor to skillfully accomplish as a writer. Upon completion, I felt honestly moved. That is not a statement I make often with regards to teen fiction. So, all in all, I applaud John Green for writing an accessible novel not only concerning cancer, but people. Thank you.

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