i told dan to follow me since the traffic around harvard square was a bit hectic. looking in my rearview mirror, when i saw dan's car pull out, i started driving. repeated looks in the mirror kept me confuse, as i was never quite sure he was behind me, and he was always several cars back. i drove as slow as possible, hoping he'd catch up. occasionally i'd lose sight of him altogether, only to have him reappear minutes later. approaching harvard square, i decided to go right through ground zero when i realized traffic could still get through the walk for hunger path. unfortunately, traffic could not get through the may day celebration happening on the same day, and there was a massive detour around harvard square. traffic was horrible, a few carlength worth of advancement for every traffic light change, and at one point the taxicab in front of me turned off his engine and the driver got out of his car. i honked at him then asked if he was leaving. he said something to me that i didn't quite understand and pointed to the traffic lights. i thought maybe he needed to stretch his legs or something, but the lights turned green, and he showed no signs of getting back into his car, so i had to drive around him.
when i finally got to somerville, i had lost dan. i was hoping we'd be able to meet up at his new apartment, but the problem was i only knew the street and not the house number. so i parked and walked up and down the street, looking for either dan or his car, neither of which i saw. because he has no cellphone, i couldn't call him to ask where he was. after 10 minutes of suspiciously roaming the street looking at cars, i got back in my car and drove home. i remember dan told me the address via instant messaging a few months ago, so i searched through my transcripts, and finally found the house number. i went back to his street, to the right house. i saw his car, so i knew he was finally here. problem was now that i was there, i didn't have his apartment number, so i couldn't ring the buzzer to get his attention (standing in the foyer, i did see "yang look" on one of the mailboxes and i was tempted to ring that buzzer). instead, i stood outside his building and shouted his name a few times, to no avail. so i stood in the parking lot, hoping dan would come out eventually, or maybe give me a call even though he has no phone service. then i saw him coming out of the building. "what happened?" he asked. turns out he never did follow me from allston. that car that i thought was his actually wasn't. neither where any of the other cars i thought were his when i looked in my rearview mirror.
mystery solved, we started moving his stuff into his new apartment. i was the 5th person to ever have seen the place. it was really cool, spacious, high ceilings, wall to wall carpeting, built-in air-conditioning in the living room and one of two bedrooms, nice southern exposure with lots of sun, a small backyard (good enough for barbecuing and growing things in pots) overlooking a hill and a view of cambridge through trees, circulating hood over the stove as well as a dishwasher and a brand new fridge, and enough room to entertain, i'm guessing 900 square feet. oh, and three exit points, good for when you're trying to dodge the police. and somebody was cooking curry because it smelled really good. plus, friendly cute neighbors (one named gaby) who greeted dan and helped us hold the door when we were moving in some of the furnitures. i think i'm going to like dan and cymara living here!
we left to return my parents' car and get free bubble ice tea from the cafe. from there, it was the fresh pond mall, where after lunch at the macdonald's (dan treated me to some chicken mcnuggets, a trio of real life foreshadowing mean girls strutted in front of us and cut the line), we went to the theatre to catch the 4:10 matinee of mean girls. dan paid for my ticket to help him move, which saved me the embarrassing task of actually having people seeing me buy a mean girls ticket, even though it was my idea to go see this movie in the first place. we were the first two people in the upstairs screening room, but soon the place filled up with teenage girls and their whispered chatter prior to the movie starting. the audience was 95% girls, with the other percentage being their adult chaperones (for those not yet old enough to see a pg-13 movie), their boyfriends (i counted one), the handful of teenage boys who went to see the movie (i counted 4, one of whom sat in our row, the boy's row), and then us.
the two big attractions for me (not those attractions) to see this movie was the fact that it was written by tina fey (who also play a great sarcastic math teacher/pusher (inside joke)), the übermodel for smart, successful, funny women, and stars lindsay lohan, whom i've been a big fan of since the remake of the parent trap. cady (lohan) is a home schooled girl who enters the public school system for the first time when her scientist parents return to the states after spending most of her life growing up in africa. right away she comes face to face with the stark social reality of modern schools. not belonging to any cliques, cady is immediately branded as an outcast, and there's any early scene of her eating her lunch in one of the girl bathroom stalls because nobody else will let her sit at their table. of course cady is befriended by artsy losers, who at first make fun of her but end up becoming her friends - that is until cady catches the attention of "the plastics," a small all girls clique made up of the most popular girls in the school. regina (rachel mcadams) extends an invitation for cady to come sit at their table for a week, not before mentioning what an honor this is (for cady). pushed by her artsy loser friends who see this as their opportunity to infiltrate the popular crowd and perhaps get back at them, cady ends up joining the plastics. when cady falls in love with aaron (jonathan bennett), regina's ex-boyfriend, only to have regina sabotage any possible relationship, that's when the sounds of girl on girl vengeance can be heard (is it just me or is girl vengeance the latest hot thing? kill bill anyone?). mean girls bears the most resemble to heathers (1989), that other movie about popular girls clique and the one girl who ends up toppling the power structure. while heathers is a dark comedy at its most nonapologetic (and perhaps its best), mean girls is somewhat sugarcoated and at one point gets a little afterschool special preachy (bear in mind that heathers was rated R while mean girls is PG-13 - nobody drinks drain-o in mean girls). what mean girls does best is conveying the secret world of teenage girls, where power can be derived from the secrets you know, who you tell it to, and the exchange of gossip as commodity, whether it be true or otherwise. on that point it hits the mark, and you can tell there's some brains behind the writing, not just your usual teenage comedy. tina fey starts the movie off right with a flash of boobage. tim meadows is hilarious as principal duvall, suffering from a mysterious right hand carpal tunnel syndrome suffered during the summer that leaves his hand in a cast, who has the hots for recently divorced ms.norbury (fey). meadows is not the only SNL alum to have a role in the film: amy poehler plays regina's "vicariously living my youth through my daughter" mom, and ana gasteyer plays cady's uptight mom (if only we could get a dash of molly shannon! then it'd be perfect). how does lindsay lohan hold up in a role immortalized by winona ryder? back when heathers came out, winona (and likewise her co-star christian slater) was so indie hot so could power small cities with her brilliance, so she's beyond compare. lohan does a great job with the role though, and the fact that she's actually the age that she's playing adds authenticity to her scenes of teenage awkwardness and angst. she's equally adept at playing the normal girl (at the start of the story) and the glamour girl (when she's fully indoctrinated into the plastics). here's to hoping she finds challenging roles and has a steady career and not burn out like many other child stars! one gripe about the movie: where's the cheerleaders? this is high school, isn't it? perhaps the filmmakers didn't want to go down that road, for fear of confusing this movie with a cheerleader movie. mean girls also has a noticeable feminist streak, the story focusing on cady and how she interacts with her girlfriends. guys play secondary roles, and although there's a male love interest, he's more of a foil, causing the initial rift between cady and regina, and becomes almost a pawn in a secet power struggle he doesn't know about until the very end (of course he gets angry, but like all good movie boyfriends, he comes back and professes his real interest for the female lead from the beginning, a la sixteen candles). other than aaron, the rest of the guys are almost stereotyped, seemingly preoccupied with sex (the math team captain, gretchen's "butter your muffin" ex-boyfriend, the "i like them young and asian" coach, and even the principal). the only character full accepted into the girl's world is damien (daniel franzese), and only because he's gay and acts effeminate. the bottom line is this is a smart, funny teenage comedy, with plenty of memorable laughs. although seemingly targeted at girls or perhaps women who enjoy high school nostalgia, it's a film anyone can love, especially one scene in particular, the christmas talent show, when the plastics dangerously blur the line between "oh my god that's so hot!" to "oh my god they're underaged girls!" enjoy!
my parents came over briefly when they dropped me off in cambridge (they also delivered some senjianbao to my godmother along the way). my mother has a habit of cleaning my kitchen whenever she comes over, and usually i don't notice until she's gone, when i go into the kitchen and see all the dishes are done and there's no clutter on the counter. i brought in all the plants, showing my father the mysterious plight of the jasmine plant. he suggested we take it back home and raise it, where it's a lot sunnier and warmer (even though all throughout winter the jasmine did just fine, it's either over-fertilized, underwatered, or cold weather damage). my mother also took her mother's day present, the helichrysum, before they left.
a lot of television watching this sunday night! first, there's 10.5, the NBC miniseries about a ginormous earthquake rocking the west coast. after about 20 minutes it got boring. i didn't really care about the characters or the premise, and it was edited in a 24esque style, shaking cameras and split screens. i changed the channel to the sopranos, paula garces sighting! she is one of my favorite actresses, i hope she has a bigger role on the show. next came the red sox game, after the twin failures of last night, i was sure the red sox would rally tonight and keep themselves from being swept. that didn't happen, and the texas rangers (with some help from pedro "is he really that good? nah!" martinez) made it a terrible weekend for red sox nation. my taped episode of alias i will have to save for tomorrow night.