Operation Empire

This is obviously my personal site but my online content arsenal is vast. It includes Greater Gotham: Going Global, a blog about being out and about in New York City and what happens when you turn Gotham Girl lose on the UK; Fabulous Foodie, where food and food culture are served up a la carte. Last but not least, there is Modern Parlance -- home to my hard-working writer alter ego and headquarters in my nefarious plan to take over the world. It is also home to my work blog - Personal Parlance, where I hold forth on publishing, books, social media, communication, indexing, writing, education – and anything else content-wise that catches my eye. 

I had wanted to call the whole thing Operation Empire but several of my friends suggested that might put people off. Upon consideration I decided that a) they were right (so went with Modern Parlance) and b) to effectively take over the world, I would need fewer friends and more minions. Applications being accepted now.

Scribbles & Notes

Of course, the word-smithing started long before the plan for world domination. At one time or another, my personal writing projects have included:

Take 2 Movie Reviews which proved indirectly that I once had a social life where as TV Rants & Raves suggested perhaps that I didn't. (I take comfort in the fact that I haven't updated it lately - which suggests that things are looking up.)

The only thing my ongoing Bibliomania ever suggested was that I needed more shelves and the patience to wait for  paperbacks. Publishing Grunt's Bible came about because working with books isn't the thrill ride that reading or buying them is. 

There were pure flights of fancy like Staving off Ennui, the Server Sees the Sights; there were answers to hypothetical questions like "what should go in a toy hall of fame and then there were the snarkathons - first site website I ever did - Alias Smith & Jones Site and the Dark Shadows Snarkathon.

Much older material is kept in the Ephemera Archives - moved to the backburner but not completely forgotten. Who knows what'll end up catching my attention next...


Saw Possession last night. It wasn't bad. It wasn't the book but obviously that would be near impossible - if only because of the way the novel was structured - but there were some pretty big chunks not there. Roland of the film (American and unattached) was not really anything like Roland of the book. I'm OK with that 'cause I didn't like Roland in the book (British and living with a girlfriend). Actually, this was more a "based on" than a "movie of" but I expected it to be. Honestly I was expecting it to ABSOLUTELY suck and it didn't. I was thoroughly entertained and didn't look at my watch once! If I hadn't read the book, I would have found little beyond Gwyn and her turtlenecks to complain about. And mostly, I complain about her because I find her dull. At some point in her life, someone decided that Gwyneth is all about turtlenecks. She seems to wear tem all the time - on screen and off. Why? She does in this film too and it works but still...it's just something I've noticed about her. Her accent didn't really bother me and she didn't get in the way of anyone else. 

Lots and LOTS of eye candy in both the past and present storylines. If the camera had just sat there and lingered on Jeremy Northam all night, I would have been OK. Lucky me, it lingered plenty AND gave me lots of other worthy visuals. Jennifer Ehle (she was Pride and Prejudice) is stunning. I might have preferred Aaron Eckhart a bit tidier but I certainly wouldn't kicked him outta bed for eating crackers...well, not till later anyhow. I would have brought Northam the crackers.

Speaking of clothes - I adored the period stuff. Extra points to the costume designer who not only gave us the GREAT clothes but managed to create the most perfect, worn in, clichéd grad student wardrobe I have ever seen for Aaron. here was a strange "French Lt. Woman moment - or two - or three -- but I blame that on Cristabel's cape. The lawyer/friend (just in the film, I don't recall him in the book) is hilarious

And it has what may be one of the funniest single throw away lines I have heard in modern cinema.


It's been a while since I saw a movie worth blathering about. I'd blather more about Titanic except that I was laughing at it so hard that I could barely put a coherent thought together. But for your amusement, I'll try.

  • I mean, did it come as a shock to anyone that David Warner's character was a lousy human being? No. He is David Warner and he almost always plays those guys.
  • Did someone tell Billy Zane that this was a silent film? He was acting (if you can call it that) with his eyebrows.
  • Leo...OK, I admit I don't understand the appeal of the boy but I don't think he's the worst thing on screen either. That would be the dialogue.
  • I liked Victor Garber. I wish they'd had more for him to do.
  • I was amazed and entertained by Kate Winslet and her amazing long lasting make up that doesn't come off in a sinking, water-soaked, life threatening situation. That's all day coverage!

Anyway, the whole thing was so utterly ridiculous and historically wacky that I had a tremendously good time for all the wrong reasons.

Men in Black

Two words - Tommy Lee! No, really I have more words than that. It's just that I adore Tommy Lee Jones and look forward to the Marshals with great eagerness.

Will Smith has just been impressing the hell out of me right and left these days. The kid has comic everything -- timing, physicality and the ability to step back and be a tad more subtle. This last quality is one when missing can keep someone from being truly funny. Without it - you're...a buffoon. Sure, buffoons are funny but not over a sustained period of time. Will sustains it.

Linda Fiorentino. I want to be her when I grow up. Ok, I am grown up but a girl can dream can't she?

All three worked so well together it would have been enough to make me happy but no...there was more. The little touches -- the trio of little aliens trying to make off with the cigarettes...that kind of thing. What a delight the film was. To go on with the review would be silly because I didn't dislike anything about it and I'd run out of adjectives for what I did like.

What do I do when not working on this site, read a bit about the guilty party responsible for this site or the answers I gave to the 'about me' survey
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