Monday, March 25, 2013

Join the realm!

If you are a fan of Game of Thrones, like I am, you most definitely are looking forward to the third season, which starts on Sunday, March 31. I've grown more and more excited each week and am currently in the middle of re-watching Season 1 and Season 2 to get ready. While seasons 1 and 2 covered the story lines from the first books in author George R.R. Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice series, A Game of Thrones and A Clash of Kings, season 3 will cover roughly the first half of the 973-page third book, A Storm of Swords.

No spoilers here: A Storm of Swords. Is. Awesome. And heartbreaking. And captivating. And full of surprises. I can't wait to see how the actors, writers, and directors bring this book to life. 

It is known that Game of Thrones includes a long list of characters and settings to keep straight. Do you know the sigil of each house?

House Baratheon: Ours in the Fury
House Bolton: Our Blades are Sharp
House Lannister: Hear Me Roar (unofficial: A Lannister Always Pays His Debts)
House Martell: Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken
House Mormont: Here we Stand
House Stark: Winter is Coming
House Tully: Family, Duty, Honor
House Targaryen: Fire and Blood

At you can create your own house sigil by customizing the banner background, text, and icons. Here is the sigil I created. There was no squirrel icon available, so I settled on a food theme:

Have fun designing your house sigils!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Jason Molina: 1973-2013

News outlets report that singer-songwriter Jason Molina passed away March 16, 2013, at the age of 39. He had been in poor health in recent years and a campaign was underway to help raise funds for his mounting medical bills. Molina is best known for the music he recorded under the names Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co. His music was noticeably influenced by American folk and country, and his unique voice was instantly recognizable. Molina's highly poetic lyrics often centered on the lives and concerns of working people, particularly in his home state of Ohio and the city of Chicago, which had become something of an adopted home for the musician. His protagonists were tired, anxious, uncertain about what their lives meant and where they might end up. But Molina expressed these pervasive anxieties with such tenderness that many of his songs have the comforting qualities of lullabies. I am reminded of a lyric from his song "Blue Factory Flame":

when i die put my bones in an empty street
to remind me of how it used to be
don’t write my name on a stone
bring a Coleman lantern and a radio
a Cleveland game and two fishing poles
and watch with me from the shore
ghostly steel and iron ore ships coming home
where i am paralyzed by the emptiness

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Return of the Mars

Calling all Veronica Mars fans! By the time you read this the goal may have been reached, but creator Rob Thomas (with support from star Kristen Bell) has started a Kickstarter campaign to raise money in order to make a VM movie. Yes, you read right: A Veronica Mars Movie! And, it's looking good because the $2 million goal has almost been reached in one day.

Shooting is set to begin in the summer, with a release sometime in early 2014. Now, we just have to see if LoVe becomes a reality again ...

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Tallest Man On Earth: Love Is All

The Tallest Man On Earth is the enigmatic stage name of Swedish singer-songwriter Kristian Matsson. He has been recording original music and performing live for several years, but recently received a significant profile boost when he toured with critically-acclaimed artist Bon Iver. All of Matsson's work is guitar-based and heavily folk influenced, and his distinctively raspy voice is a wonderful instrument for his evocative song lyrics. While I would recommend the entirety of his 2010 album The Wild Hunt, it's the song "Love Is All" that has really stolen my heart. The video director Johan Stolpe has collected and edited vintage home movies - seemingly shot on Super 8 - into an unexpectedly moving complement to the song itself.