Hangover Movies: Review & Reflections (No Regrets?)

One of the funniest movies I have ever watched are from the Hangover Movie Series. Every movie (all three of them) contains funny scenes and events that keep you laughing.

Yet, each movie conveys 4 life lessons as well so here’s what I observed (spoiler alert!):

  1. True friendship stands above all

Being good friends, they go through the struggle together and find ways out of the messy situation they get into. Though Alan is not really a responsible friend to them, he cares about them and especially about Phil. I think Alan just looks up to Phil as the smart guy. Alan calls them the “wolf pack.”

Mr. Chow saves the lives of each of them saying, “Since one of you was a friend,” meaning that Alan’s friendship to him meant him enough that he cared to save the lives of all of them from Marshall, the gangster whose gold Mr. Chow had stolen.

A close reflection upon the movie’s story and events reveals the friendship theme. Viewers can surely appreciate and identify with the idea of true friendship among old friends.

2. Deeper Self-Reflection and Character Shift

In Hangover 2, by having the Thailand setting and by their visit to the Buddhist monastery they all end up meditating. The main monk there even tells them how when they were drunk they climbed the walls of the monastery and asked questions about the purpose of life.

By having the crazy, accidental adventure and by spending a night with the transgender Thai prostitute that there “is a demon in me” (though Alan adding the hilarious twist adds, “It’s true, he’s got Semen in him.”) Stu also gains confidence to finally stand up to his mean, arrogant father-in-law.

3. Time to mature

In Hangover 3, the fact that Alan finds the girl he ends up marrying and thereby significantly maturing shows that people need a reason to grow up in life. He becomes mature enough to even tell Mr. Leslie Chow, “Bad things happen when we meet,” and thereby puts an end to their friendship.

For many people it can be getting older itself and for others it can be a job or the person they fall in love with. Though a real life Alan would not mature simply by marrying another person, in the movie the interaction between Alan and that girl was definitely interesting and funny.

4. No Regrets or Do Regret?

The wolf pack keeps getting in trouble and the guys refuse to learn the lesson that being together (and drunk!) means a lot of trouble. The trouble started in Hangover 1 and went all the way to Hangover 3. Though those guys are no longer in their teens or even twenties they end up doing getting drunk and doing crazy, stupid things. They follow the motto of No Regrets.

Despite getting in trouble, Stu refuses to find better friends. He is shown to be the stable guy among the three of them (the fourth guy is not significant in movie – I forgot his name for a good reason). However he gets into trouble every time he is with his friends. Of course in the movie the whole point is to let the guys end up in crazy, messed up situations so that the audience enjoys watching a funny movie but in real life if this happens to someone again and again then it’s a different story.

I think many people in real life also refuse to give up their older contacts and thus are unable to change themselves or become mature adult. Stu is just not confident enough to leave those friends and find better ones. Seriously pondering the story of the movie would leave one wondering why would anyone not give up their old friends. The motto of No Regrets can be pretty regrettable as it can be the excuse why some people don’t grow up and don’t change themselves. No regrets means no reflection and no self-review. Thus no change, no betterment.

The Hangover movie 1-3 are surely the funniest movies to watch. There is adventure, action, funny, witty dialogues packed with an interesting story line. It is said that the movie’s prodcer had a Hanogver 1 like groom-goes-missing story and that is what inspired the movie’s idea.

How I Met Your Mother: Robin vs. Tracy (Ted’s First Wife) – The Ending!

It has been a long time since I re-watched How I Met Your Mother. Its characters have stayed with me and will stay with me forever.

Like many of its fans, what bothered me was that Ted’s wife was not Robin but someone we did not even know until the end of the series basically. It was a disappointment and while I do feel that the writers or the makers of the show could have given it the expected ending of where Robin ends up being Ted’s first wife (and not simply the second) and all fans would have been happy with that, here’s why I feel How I Met Your Mother would have to be Tracy and not Robin and what we learn about life and relationships from this specific ending:

  1. Robin is not mother-material. She lives with four (or five?) dogs and she does not seem to have what it takes to be a good mother. She is driven, ambition, always on the go, wants to explore the world and gets bored easily. While of course there are probably real life mothers who do that and can still be good moms, creating a family is about stability and sacrifice and Robin would not have added to either if she had been married to Ted.
  2. She is the fantasy wife Ted would have wanted. She is charming, egoistic and has the characteristics of cool. Ted is nerdy. Robbin is the cheerleader and Ted is the nerd (so to speak). Robin is Ted’s fantasy but Tracy would be the reality.
  3. Real life lessons:
    1. We learn that life has conflicting motivations in it: the desire to marry someone is one thing but that person’s suitability for parenthood is another.
    2. Even in other cases we see this example: a certain field of profession would excite us but it does not give us the work-life balance we need. Ted Mosby’s job at the architect’s firm (a so-called cool job) is a good example versus his professorial job at the university afterwards (where he meets the woman that fits his character).
    3. The people or jobs or things that we want maybe should not be the ones we are able to get in our life. Maybe, we would end up being worse. In the series Ted and Robbin come together several times as a couple and break up and there is an on-again-off-again relationship and this shows that sometimes universe gives us signs of what is not meant to be and we could be better off by accepting it (Ted got married to someone else because he knew Robin was not worth trying for).

HIMYM was a fantastic series and I absolutely loved it. But whenever I think back to it, I often think of its ending and Tracy and Ted vs. Robin and Ted and then I come to the same conclusion: Ted was better off being married to Tracy who ended up being The Mother rather than Robin (who became Ted’s second wife). There’s always a lot to learn if one ponders over the events and happenings of any series. . .

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert – 7 Takeaways

Eat Pray Love introduced me to Gilbert’s writing. If Eat Pray Love was a fantastic travel memoir, Big Magic is a fantastic self-helpish book on the topic of creative living.

If you are a creative of some kind (be a painter, a writer, musician, jewelry-maker) you have to read this book!

Here’s 7 things you learn from the book:

  1. Everyone can be a creative. You are “entitled” to be a creative and you are allowed to give the world your creative gifts!
  2. Don’t burden your creativity with the pressure of generating financial gains from it.
    1. This was the best idea that I learned. As a creative (poet and short-story writer), I have for long believed in this same idea and it was a great validation to hear the amazing Liz Gilbert reiterate that!
    2. She says she kept a day job and never expected that she would use her writing to generate money though if you do so, she says it’s the best case scenario (though not only scenario)!
  3. Be a creative for yourself – not for others.
    1. Another fantastic idea. She quotes the example of a middle-aged friend of hers who took up figure-skating for the second time just to get to feel alive again in her forties.
  4. Don’t be a tortured artist!
    1. Elizabeth refutes the idea that creatives have to suffer to make their art. She gives several examples of how this idea is outdated and irrational and does not really help you as a creative. She encourages you to go and create and like the process.
  5. Big Magic Touch
    1. Now what is big magic? The book has the touch to give you your big magic if you lost it or to strengthen your faith in your very own creative endeavor. She gives a beautiful example from her own life of how she saw “big magic” in full-spirit as she refers to autor Ann Patchett’s novel State of Wonder
  6. Creativity is spiritual
    1. The idea is reinforced and maybe not all creatives believe in spirituality but I really liked how she refers to the source of creativity as being other worldly in a way.
    2. Thus she says creatives of all sorts need not beat themselves up because it’s better to think that “you had a genius” and not that you are a creative “genius”. This subtle difference, according to her, is the key to not let yourself become an arrogant creative.
  7. Elizabeth Gilbert is a fantastic author
    1. And you should read her other books if you have not done so!
    2. Start with Eat Pray Love if you have not done so!

To sum up, the book carries a lovely kind tone (the audiobook is in Liz Gilbert’s own voice!) and is full of kind and inspiring advice on the topic of creative living: how to be a creative, how not to mess up your creativity, how to make your creative living easier for you to practice.

I’m not quite done with the book but it is one of those books that propel you to review them because they inspire you and make you hopeful. I was working on a short-story also before and by listening to this book, I realized I need to work faster on my big magic (my poetry collection and my short story writing).

Good luck with your big magic and have fun reading Liz’s Big Magic!

Bertrand Russell: Biography by Caroline Moorehead – a review

I recently finished reading a biography of Bertrand Russell. What a book!

To say the least it is a brilliant book, full of stories of Russell’s life and not your typical dry-as-a-bone-narration-of-life-events-biography.

Photo by Gabby K on Pexels.com

Here’s my summary points about the book:

  1. The reader is fascinated at the genius of Russell.

His absolute talent in mathematics and politics is impressive. Throughout the book you hear tales of that e.g. how he spent several years writing Principia Mathematica books. I was inspired to read tales of such intellectual genius

2. The reader pities his personal life

But his major flaws in personal dealings especially with women are heart wrenching. He would initiate affairs and end them in a terrible, hasty manner caring very little for the women involved. He got bored with one and moved onto the next one. He married four times and had countless affairs. The impression is thus: a brilliant genius scientist and political thinker who is shallow at heart and fails in his personal life.

The reader feels pity and awe in turn at the events of his life, from the slow deterioration of his marriage with Alys to the countless rapid breakups he goes through. This biography is a documentary of a genius’s life who did not have time for relationships. He admits that himself.

3. Russell’s obsessions – a mixed life

He had one obsession after the other for his profession (from mathematics to politics to world peace). Those obsessions gave him the drive to run his life at full speed.

The women on the other hand often fell to the side for Russell remained in each of their lives a central figure while they themselves were a periphery presence in his though every time he fell in love he wrote to each one that he had never felt quite so in love before.

4. Conclusion:

The book is worth reading if you love reading about historical figures who shaped the world and whose legacy is still vibrant. Russell stood for free speech, free thinking, democracy and fought really hard for a peaceful world (he did A LOT of work against nuclear wars and country wars). His biography reads like a novel really: full of interesting anecdotes, interesting commentary from Caroline Moorhead (the author) and even some real-life photos from Russell’s life.

Go get that book free of cost from this library and read on your smart phone on tablet!

Note: This blog is copy-righted. Thanks for reading.

The Maths Behind Arts

Photo by 3Motional Studio on Pexels.com

The science behind drawings

In art 101 we got taught

All pictures and images

Are merely a composition of basic geometry

With some really fine coloring.

Shapes, circles, ovals, squares and trapezoid

The mystery behind art got untied

The knots untangled thanks to the teacher

Who talked no nonsense and a lot of science

Of doing art with techniques of mathematics,

Square heads, rectangle torsos, long triangle arms,

Basic drawings, the foundations of master pieces.

Desperate Housewives’ Psychoanalysis: Helen Fisher Personality Test

If you remember Bree van de Kamp, Susan Mayer, Lynette Scavo and Gaby Solis and their personalities, it’s time to psychoanalyse them according to Helen Fisher Personality Test.

Photo by One Shot on Pexels.com

What are 4 personality types according to the Test?

Helen Fisher’s personality test roughly divides primary personalities into 4 categories:

  1. Directors: the straight-thinkers who tend to be goal-oriented and believe in having their will and have high IQ.
  2. Negotiators: the opposite of directors and basically the touchy-feely kind of people with high emotional intelligence.
  3. Builders: the conventional souls who follow the norms, love the rituals and happily live in conservative 9-5 jobs or even as housemaking spouses.
  4. Explorers: Who want thrill, excitement, new projects and adventures.

How do these personality types fit onto our Desperate housewives?

This is a rough division but now we can fix these personalities onto our four main house-wives.

Director: Who was the tough one in Desperate Housewives? Who talked no nonsense and was very driven?

Answer: Lynette Scavo – Director. She was a career woman and was proud to admit that.

Builder: Do you remember the most conventional one on Wiksteria lane? The one who organized the dinners and believed in old-fashioned values?

Answer: Bree van de Kamp – Builder

Explorer: Who sought adventure and all things new and expensive? Who got bored easily?

Answer: Gaby (Gabrielle) Solis was the explorer. The housewife life was not her thing, was it?

Negotiator: Who was the most loving and kind one? The one who had to please everyone? Beat around the bush.

Answer: Susan Mayer – Negotiator.

  1. Bonus: Can you guess Eddie’s Britt’s personality? Was she a builder? Was she an explorer? A negotiator? A director? Any guesses? Post in comments!

Amish people’s Washing Machines & Dalai Lama’s Treadmill

Where the pleasures of such are most pleasing

And the pains of such are the most painful

And thus we cherish everything in our imagination

And begin to first ignore and then curse it in reality.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

And in reality everything just fades out a little bit

In reality things slow down a little bit,

In our imagination though they remain perfect,

Pristine like Eden, green like trees, blue like the sky

In reality though it’s a different story,

A story of disappointments and convincing ourselves

At the sight of the real thing that this is not what we

Imagined, this is not what we wished for, this is not

What we wanted and yet we end up with this,

This that we thought would be perfect,

And yet the kindness within us must wake

Before we can realize and admit that

We must not hold the products of our imagination

To the standards of our reality, that our sight must not weigh

What our vision measured, that our hands must not touch

What our mind had crafted and yet not every fantasy

Becomes a reality and maybe for a good reason:

Those life-long regrets are there as a mirror of what could be

And thus we regret even more and yet if we had done it,

We’d have been over with it.

To have it is to degrade it, to imagine it is to appreciate it.

We often complain about the lack of gratitude in our society

And yet to think that we can somehow desire that which we have

In our hand and experience joy by thinking about it with our mind’s eye

It seems like a folly. Gratitude is the opposite of what expectation is,

What desiring is, what wanting is, what fantasizing is.

Gratitude is the reverse of what we won to be able to win it again –

Only metaphorically. Yes, we lose that we do not value but to think

Humans, ordinary humans like us, can be genuinely grateful,

It seems like a fool’s paradise, a delusion of spiritually enthusiastic

And a utopian idea that only maybe nuns and monks implement

On a daily basis.

I once read that the Dalai Lama goes on long walks if the weather if good

And uses a treadmill instead if the weather is bad. A treadmill is a luxury

That the average person does not possess and yet to me it looks like we

Are all, including the spiritual ones leading the spiritualism movement,

Somehow enslaved to our material possessions.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Even the Amish own washing machines. Not all Amish but some.

It’s a fact: modern life has luxuries that all humans – including the

Spiritual leaders and the absolutely technology-hating – take for granted,

Use and basically enjoy using, until there is a new gadget out.

7 Rules I Use for My Blog Motivation

Here’s seven rules I’m using to stay motivated for my blogging project:

  1. Focus on what you can (write, design, do) and forget what is too complicated right now (writing, desiting, etc.)
  2. Show up every day – goal is to do 30 mins of blog work every day though it can mean working on my social media as well.
  3. Think long, long term (I’m thinking 5-10 years) because I know I want to have a full-time writing career at some point so if this blog keeps making progress gradually, that is perfect.
  4. Think outside the box: I write about what I think is interesting to me and not what I think would be popular. Sometimes they coincide. Sometimes they don’t.
  5. Be grateful for what you create: I appreicate my time and effort and that right now my blog has a good look (thanks to a wordpress magazine theme).
  6. Something is better than nothing: even if I can only work 5 minutes on my blog, I do that. I wrote this post in under 10 minutes though at first I did not know if I would get anything done before my next appointment of tutoring someone for English.
  7. Have fun: I enjoy working on my blog. I love the progress I’m making.

That’s all from me. How do you stay motivated for your projects? Share your tricks or techniques in comments!

Bertrand Russell and Alys: First Wife

When Alys was more powerful and older

She didn’t make him feel unsafe

In fact in her company the teenage Russell

Felt safe and overjoyed

But when she was vulnerable and he had the

Upper hand he let her down harshly and chided her for

Her lack of philosophical intellect.

Alys had emotional intelligence but Russell was bored

With this specific woman with a kind heart

And moved onto the next one.

The arrogance of intellect blinds a man easily

And maybe a women a bit less easily?

There is a lot a young mind

Can imagine, plan, try and achieve

That is unimaginable and impossible to the old mind.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Human beings are capable of having an aged body

And a young mind and the vice versa.

My thoughts went to her, where she was sent,

To Italy at the age of twenty-four, married to a man of forty

And I thought, this is good, at least her fate got saved

From house-wifery in the town of a small city in a developing world,

This was her only chance of being spared from the drudgery of

Twenty-four-by-seven housework having to work for an annoying

Mother-in-law and a controlling husband.

She stands a chance.

The youth can achieve a lot if it wishes to.

It can push the boundaries and achieve the impossible.

True the physically aged surely do miracles here and there and leave

The younger ones around them appalled by setting world records

It’s really the best and bright chance for the young.

Age maybe less of a number it is today than yesterday but the clock is surely ticking

And maybe slowly and not rusting as quickly or as easily as in the days of yore,

There surely is an average time span be it eighty or hundred.

That one can expect to live. Then the question remains for us ask: more years do not mean

More life to live. It could turn out to be burdensome without health and fitness being given

And mental wellbeing with ageing goes down.

Again she stands a good chance at creating

a life for herself if so she desires.