Saturday, 1 May 2010

It's a Fringe world









You all know by now that I have fallen in love with a tv show called Fringe. What you may not have figured out is exactly how deep this love affair has become for me. I bought the soundtrack to the first season last week and have listened to it every day since. That's how much this show has become part of my life! I have to laugh a little. I've been obsessed with books, I've read books that I've ended up dreaming of, I've carried books with me through all the stages of my life, and there are characters who are almost as real to me as people are. I do not recall any tv show affecting me like this, no matter how much I enjoyed it. Something about Fringe, about the story it is telling about Olivia, Peter, and Walter, has captured me completely. I think I am beginning to understand those Star Wars and Star Trek fans who used to have every single thing ever brought out. I'm not saying I would buy every single thing, but I'd like a Peter doll, and an Olivia one. Gee, a tiny Walter's Lab would be fun!

What I mean to say is, I keep meaning to write more often on here, but I'm usually thinking about previous episodes, upcoming ones, searching for reviews, talking to my new Fringe fan friends I've met. I don't know if there is an official word for us yet, but I've fallen into that rabbit hole that is an obsession with a cultural event. It's kind of fun, and kind of scary. It's not like I'm a teenager!

The good news is, I have not left behind my passion for books - there is nothing on this planet that could do that. I have been reading, though not to any level that will have me finishing 100 books this year. I have ordered The Cipher Garden again, and then I threw in The Arsenic Labyrinth so I could keep reading the series as soon as it arrives. Also, I found a copy of Nemesis finally - Harry! Harry Hole! I'm coming! I even found myself telling one of my co-workers yesterday all about Harry and falling in love with him. Now she wants to read The Redbreast too. So books are my constant, still, and always. Fringe has just moved up very high on my list of passions.

One thing I do like about Fringe is that books turn up every once in a while. Markham's books is a used bookstore Peter frequents, that the owner can usually come up with anything in books they are looking for. I'd like to work in Markham's book store. It is the way the best bookstores are, crowded with books, shelves, and Markham is funny. I'm sure he'd let me work there for a while. Land of Laughs by Jonathan Carroll (one of his earliest works) even gets a mention in the episode "Ability' in the first season. I've read Land of Laughs! It was over 20 years ago, so I don't remember everything, but I remember crying at the end of it. Which is pretty much what Fringe has had me doing ever since Olivia discovered that Peter is from the alternate universe. For anyone looking for a good fantasy author and book to read for Carl's OUaT3, Land of Laughs or most books by Jonathan Carroll are a good bet. So how can I not love this show? Never mind that Land of Laughs is about a reality that changes according to what the townspeople think should happen, so it's about - alternate realities. Fringe is layered with symbolism like that, so I end up looking for more clues.....speaking of layering symbolism, Peter is the one who knows the real worth of Land of Laughs. How can I not like a hero who likes books? And a show that pays attention to details like this?

I think after my very difficult year last year, Fringe has come along to awaken me to all that is still possible to dream about and wonder about, for me, in life. Along with Mary Oliver, and Dido (thanks to Susan and Lee, who introduced me, I'm playing the music of Dido every day), there are new things in my life as I view this new terrain I'm on, living with a chronic disease. I'm still coming to terms with what that means for me, and how it's changed my life. Mary Oliver is reminding me of my love of poetry and nature, and why I wrote it in the first place and what I love about the world. Dido is reminding me how much I love music and need to hear it much more regularly than I had been for some time. Fringe is reminding me of how much I love layered writing, mythic arcs and story telling over several seasons with characters that I adore. Horror, mystery, science and science fiction, family drama, life-changing events that reverbrate up and down the years, and strong characters who are completely believable - Fringe has this in spades, and I can't get enough.

I've only recently come to the realization that I am picking up the pieces after the explosions and drama of last year. I know I'm fortunate, and that I could be in a much worse place if some of the tests had come back positive. The best news (other than that I just have diabetes and nothing else is wrong) is that I had my first writing idea in over a year, earlier this week. So I know I'm heading back to where I want to be, and I'm grateful that the leaves are coming out on the trees, and the spring birds have come back and fill the world with their songs, and that there is room and time for new passions in my life.

I am keeping this blog. I do love it and am proud of what I have written about books and life over the past two and a half years. I am especially thrilled to have met of all of you who share my love of books and reading. Some of you have become special to me, becoming my friends as well. I think I've been taking a break without being aware of it, for the past few months. So if you don't mind, I think more posts about Fringe will be creeping in, because after 6 months with this show, it's become part of my life, and I have to talk about it. This isn't just a blog about books any more, though they will still make up the huge bulk of it. I hope you'll still enjoy coming here. I will still keep the same blog title, because that really is my philosophy in life. Now, if only Markham's bookstore really did exist......

16 comments:

Ms Bubblefish said...

Well done for choosing to be real about the impact of chronic disease on your life and documenting the ways in which you cope with it. My 41 year migraine status has impacted so much on my life, that talking about it always feels like such a taboo. I cherish stories such as yours where living with the pain is a success, although not easy. Thank you!

Kay said...

Susan, kudos to you for spending the time to get to know what you need and want. It's such a journey for all of us, isn't it?

My husband and I have been watching the first season of Fringe through Netflix. We are about halfway through it. It's pretty fascinating. I've always liked Joshua Jackson, so that's a big plus too. LOL

Molly said...

Susan -

Your passion and enthusiasm for life is contagious, whether you talk about the change of seasons, books, or Fringe. I look forward to reading all your posts whenever it suits you to write them.

Shelley said...

I'm going to have to try watching Fringe. I suspect that if you like it, I will too!

茂恒 said...

You're gorgeous~.................................................................

Andrea said...

I love your Fringe posts! And oh how I wish I was watching it so I could discuss it more with you! I have Season 1 on our Netflix queue, but unfortunately I have to wait to receive them after my husband and I finish a series we're watching together.

GeraniumCat said...

Coming to terms with health changes needs such a lot of time and energy! Finding something new that helps you through hard times can be really positive - I developed an obession with Handel opera during a particularly difficult time - and television has such immediacy that it can really catch you up. I'm really glad that you are enjoying Fringe so much.

brideofthebookgod said...

Hi Susan, we really need to talk about this offline more than we have; I'm still mildly addicted, and have just seen White Tulip which I thought was wonderful in helping to explain Walter
Fringe is on satellite TV over here and because he doesn't have that and I thought he would love this I have bought my friend Silvery Dude the first series box set. So the proselytising goes on!!

俊冠樺宇 said...

新手上路哦~請大家多支持(・ˍ・*) ........................................

Louise said...

That was a highly interesting post and I wish you much luck and happiness in your life, with your writing and your health. Being a Dane living in Denmark I am not always completely caught up with all the different US and UK shows, so I am wondering what exactly Fringe is :-)

Amy said...

Always good to have another FRINGE fan around!!! Isn't this season GREAT?!!!

-Amy
Life by Candlelight

0308MathewP_Thurlow said...

教育無他,愛與榜樣而已...............................................................

teabird said...

I just saw the season finale of Fringe, and I'm very sad that I'll have to wait...

*** spoiler ***

I wonder who will see the tattoo?

I love the show for all the reasons you mentioned - plus the pleasure of watching John Noble. (Even his Walternate is already a very real character.)

B120ryantScipio1 said...

上來打聲招呼,祝你一切平安!.............................................

Susan said...

Ms Bubblefish: thank you so much! I wish you were closer, because I know so many people who have migraines here in Canada also. You could all start a support group - it's such a debilitating disease for its sufferers.

Kay: thank you. It is such a journey, especially when things suddenly change, isn't it? Have you finished Season one of Fringe yet? Because Season two finishes on such a high note, it's so good.....you have so much ahead of you! and yes, Joshua is a definite plus for me too! lol

Molly: thank you. You are always so supportive, and have become a good part of the book community. I always think of you when I am writing about science fiction ,because you were so honest about not knowing anything about it. :-) we do change each other's lives, even through this space, don't we?

Shelley: oh, if I can convince you to try it!!! I got my mother watching it - I gave her season 1 for Mother's Day, and she's watched it through and is rewatching it. It's that good!

Andrea: let me know when you are starting to watch it - I can discuss them as you watch them, through email, if you like. Bride of the Book God and I have been doing this also. I love discussing Fringe!!! lol :-)

Geraniumcat: Handel opera! That is quite an unusual obsession, and very interesting. Of course, if anyone had told me a year ago about a tv show that I would like this much.....as you say, it's whatever gets us through these challenging times (so long as it's a good 'whatever'!) I think I'm surprised it has affected my writing this much.

Bride: yes, I will email later!! if you haven't seen the season finale yet, you are in for such a treat. I'm glad Silvery Dude got it, my mother did too and has watched it through once (in one weekend!) and is starting again. she just told me to buy her season 2 when it is out on dvd for Christmas :-) another convert! lol if only all our ratings counted in the US, I'm sure Fringe would be in the top 10 shows.....you have to let me know when you see the finale, ok?

Susan said...

Louise: thank you so much for your kind words. I really wish you did get Fringe. It's a tv show that started in Sept 2008 on the US Fox network. It stars John Noble (he was Denethor in Lord of the Rings), Anna Torv (an Australian actress, last seen in Mistresses from the UK), and Joshua Jackson (Dawson's Creek, an American night-time soap opera for many years on tv). I don't know if it's been translated yet, it is available in the UK if you have the same kind of dvd settings as they do. Fringe is a science fiction show that is about so much more than science fiction - it's about family, love and forgiveness as the characters uncover a Pattern of unusual events that stem from an act that Walter, one of the main characters, did long ago. Very very well written and acted. I hope you get a chance to see it - Itunes carries episodes as well.

Amy: I know you love it too, what did you think of the season finale? I expected some of what happened, but not all of it, and I'm so anxious about what next season holds! This summer seems so long ahead of us. An amazing finale!

Teabird: It was an amazing finale, don't you think? Yes, who will spot the tattoo - and will anything happen before it's spotted, between you know who!! I have nightmares about that.....and the other one, how will she find a way? Can she? Yes, a very long summer....I'll be rewatching Season 2 to see what I missed the first time, and then both seasons through :-) that should get me to July!! lol how are you getting through the summer?

and yes, the others are really well acted, aren't they? just amazing.