13 Songs to Help you Power Through Hard Times

If you’re in a dark place or up against some challenges that are proving tougher than you expected, maybe some of these songs can help you power through. (Because of their lyrics or just the way they feel.)

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1) Everybody Hurts (R.E.M.)

When your day is night alone (Hold on, hold on)
If you feel like letting go (Hold on)

2) Bridge Over Troubled Water (Simon & Garfunkel)

When darkness comes
And pain is all around,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.

3) Love Reign Supreme (Alison Moyet)

We are more in the sum
Of the numbers we’ve been done
And it’s right to be kind
Even as your chest is bleeding

4) You Gotta Be (Des’ree)

Listen as your day unfolds
Challenge what the future holds
Try and keep your head up to the sky

5) Shake It Out (Florence + The Machine)

And I’m ready to suffer and I’m ready to hope
It’s a shot in the dark aimed right at my throat

6) Level Up (Vienna Teng)

If you are afraid, come forth.
If you are alone, come forth now.

7) Afterlife (Ingrid Michaelson)

Living like you’re dying isn’t living at all
Give me your cold hands put them on my heart

8) 8 Good Reasons (Sinéad O’ Connor)

But I got 8 good reasons to stick around
8 good reasons, well maybe nine now

9) I See a Darkness (Johnny Cash)

But can you see this opposition comes rising up sometimes?
That it’s dreadful imposition, comes blacking in my mind.

10) By Myself (Judy Garland)

I’ll face the unknown, I’ll build a world of my own
No one knows better than I myself, I’m by myself alone

11) Innuendo (Queen)

Through the sorrow all through our splendor
Don’t take offence at my innuendo

12) Non, je ne regrette rien (Edith Piaf)

Avec mes souvenirs
J’ai allumé le feu

13) I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free (Nina Simone)

I wish I could do
All the things that I can do
Though I’m way overdue
I’d be starting anew.

Wimsey Vane TV adaptations: Notes on Viewing

Mrs. Selby hosted three viewing parties recently, one for each TV adaptation of the following Dorothy Sayers’ novels: Strong Poison, Have His Carcase, and Gaudy Night.

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Set in the late 1920s through mid 30s, each stars Edward Petherbridge as Lord Peter Wimsey, the aristocratic sleuth, and Harriet Walter as Harriet Vane, the mystery writer.

Although, like other screen adaptations, they tend to leave out substance from the books and can’t fully capture the author’s energy, humor, and literary wit, there’s much to recommend them. Mainly the way the actors interpret their characters, the humanity they bring out, and the chemistry they enjoy between them. I really liked Petherbridge’s Wimsey and Walter’s Vane. And I was very fond of Richard Morant’s interpretation of Bunter (Peter Wimsey’s valet and assistant in criminal investigations).

Along with Mrs. Selby and me, there were three other regulars: Dora, Michiko, and Gilbert Frisch. However, Lewis came by for Strong Poison; Hank & Ivy watched Have His Carcase, because they’d heard about the code-cracking scene; and Howard popped in for Gaudy Night, mostly because of his interest in the Oxford scenes, his interest in Mrs. Selby’s red wine, and his need to procrastinate on an assignment due two days later.

So, that said – what were our impressions of each adaptation?

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Romance Writing Workshop at the Creative Outlet Mall

I’ve been poking around the Creative Outlet Mall lately, wondering if I should sign up for a class and if so, what class and for how much, when I saw this flyer for the 16th Annual One-Day Romance Writing Workshop. Too bad I missed it (it took place a month ago, but the organizer plans to run a romance writing class sometime in the coming year)

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Signs you’re a character in a Classic Hollywood film noir

I’ve been binge-watching 1940s and 1950s Hollywood film noir with Howard, who just handed in a big end-of-term assignment that he doesn’t want to talk about. He was happy to have me join his celebratory binge-watch; he apologized in advance for the fact that he would be saying little and staring lots at the TV. He’s watched all of these before, and one of the few things he told me was that he’s dreamt sometimes of being a film noir detective. So then I thought, if you did wake up in a film noir, how would you know? Here are a bunch of signs you’re a character in a Classic Hollywood film noir:

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