Saturday, August 1, 2015

Mel's ultimate Buffy / Angel Viewing Guide!

I have been honing and refining this list for several years.  Now revised as of Summer 2015, I bring you Mel Bastian's Ultimate Buffy / Angel Viewing Guide!  Huzzah.

General warnings before you begin: while Buffy and Angel silly and funny and often downright goofy, they can also be quite violent and difficult, particularly in the later seasons of Buffy.  If you are struggling with being triggered or have suffered a recent trauma, you may want to take some time before embarking on these shows.

Obvs, start by watching Buffy seasons one through three.

Buffy episode 10, Hush, is some of
the best television ever made.
  • Angel, ep 1
  • Buffy, eps 1 and 2
  • Angel, ep 2
  • Continue by alternating Buffy then Angel for episodes 3 through 9 (Buffy 3, Angel 3; Buffy 4, Angel 4; and so on)
  • Buffy, eps 10 and 11
  • Angel, eps 10 and 11
  • Buffy, ep 12
  • Angel, ep 12
  • Buffy, eps 13 and 14
  • Angel, eps 13 and 14
  • Buffy, eps 15 and 16
  • Angel, eps 15 through 17
  • Buffy, eps 17 through 19
  • Angel, eps 18 and 19
  • Buffy, eps 20 through 22
  • Angel, eps 20 through 22

  • Angel, eps 1 and 2
  • Buffy, eps 1 through 3
  • Continue by alternating Buffy then Angel for episodes 3 through 8 (Angel 3, Buffy 4, Angel 4, Buffy 5... and so on)
  • Buffy, ep 9
  • Angel, eps 9 through 11
  • Buffy, eps 10 through 12
  • Angel, ep 12
  • Buffy, ep 13
  • Angel, eps 13 and 14
  • Buffy, eps 14 through 16*
    • *TRIGGER WARNING / SPOILER ALERT: in the end of ep. 15, Buffy discovers that her mother has died.  Ep. 16 deals almost exclusively with the whole gang coping with the death.
  • Angel, eps 15 and 16
  • Buffy, ep 17
  • Angel, ep 17
  • Buffy, ep 18
  • Angel, ep 18
  • Buffy, eps 19 through 22
  • Angel, eps 19 through 22

  • Angel, eps 1 and 2
  • Buffy, eps 1 thorugh 3
  • Angel, ep 3 and 4
  • Buffy, ep 4
  • Angel, ep 5
  • Buffy, eps 5 and 6
  • Angel, ep 6
  • Buffy, ep 7 (Do not fear the musical episode - embrace it.  IT MUST BE BUNNIES.)
  • Angel, ep 7
  • Buffy, ep 8
  • Angel, ep 8 and 9
  • Buffy, ep 9 and 10
  • Angel, ep 10
  • Buffy, ep 11
  • Angel, ep 11
  • Buffy, ep 12
  • Angel, ep 12
  • Buffy, ep 13
  • Angel, eps 13 and 14
  • Buffy, eps 14 and 15
  • Angel, eps 15 through 22
  • Buffy, eps 16 through 22**
    • **TRIGGER WARNING / SPOILER ALERT: Ep 19, and really the rest of the season, is SUPER HEAVY.  There is a violent attempted rape scene, and in the end a main character is shot and killed.  The attempted rape is revisited in the "previously on" clips in the next several episodes.  Additionally, the murder is replayed in the beginning of ep 20.  At the end of ep 20, a man is flayed alive.

  • Alternate Buffy then Angel for episodes 1 through 6 of each show (Buffy ep 1, Angel ep 1, Buffy ep 2, Angel ep 2... and so on).
  • Buffy, eps 7 and 8
  • Angel, eps 7 and 8
  • Buffy, eps 9 and 10
  • Angel, eps 9 through 12
  • Buffy, eps 11 through 16
  • Angel, ep 13
  • Buffy, ep 17
  • Angel, eps 14 through 22
  • Buffy, eps 18 through 22

That's it!  Enjoy!  I strongly suggest treating your post-Whedon-fest malaise with a showing of Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.

Questions?  Comments?  Holler at me in the comments!

hearts, me.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

TRIGGER WARNING: SUICIDE (This is how I will go.)

EDIT: If you really truly feel like you may hurt yourself, please please PLEASE take any of the following steps: go to the emergency room, call a trusted friend, or call the national suicide hotline at  1-800-273-TALK (8255).  No matter what your brain (or anyone else) is telling you right now, you are loved and the world is better with you in it.  Take care.

* * * * * *

I wrote this post back in August.  I was at that time, as in so many times throughout my life, in a low period.  I thought of these things and nothing else for a day or two.  I wrote this blog post and then thought, well, it might upset someone if I post it.  And then I knew that I was actually alright, and that this too would pass.

I share it now because maybe it will help someone.  Someone who has these thoughts and thinks that they are crazy or maladjusted or anything other than just really depressed.  So I'm going to share my darkest depressed thoughts and tell you that you can have these thoughts and still be OK.  I promise.  Be well, take care, and ask for help if you need it.

* * * * * *

In my suicide fantasy, I'm much thinner.  In it, I lie back in a warm tub, the big old clawfoot in the hall bath, full of crystal clear water.  My hair is pulled back, tight.  I'm smiling a little.  I lie back, and with a safety razor I cut one wrist.  Just one, just the left one.  And then I watch as red ribbons of blood curl from the cut, pulsing in heart-pushed crimson waves.  And everything is quiet.

Slowly, the pink-red water drains from the tub, because the stopper doesn't quite fit.  And I lie there, naked, wet, and dead, hair matted.  But as I said, I'm much thinner.  I'd have to be, really, to get into that tub.

Others are simpler, even more passive, less visual.  I swallow 100 milligrams of flexaril and a dozen benadryl with my evening pills.  Simple.  Maybe I wake up in the hospital... maybe not.  Either way, not dealing with this fucking life for a while.

And I wonder, if I go, will I get to try again?  Is this how I ended up in this life - paying for the mistakes of a life former?

In some, I wander barefoot into the neighborhoods that still have drive-bys.  Or just lie down in a dark roadway and wait.

And then there are the ones where I drive.  Into a light post, into the lake, off of a bridge.  But if I survived, how would I pay for my car?

I don't want to die.  But on nights like this, I don't want to live.  Not this life.  Not with these feelings.  Not in these circumstances.  Maybe by tomorrow it will have passed.  Maybe not.  I really don't know.

Right now, I'm still worried about hurting people's feelings.  so we're probably OK, for now.


Wandering around my house, in the dark, in the cold, looking for "something to eat" - something to fill dark spaces that food was not meant to occupy.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The things I am not.

I am not a writer.  Or I am one, but I am a writer who does not write.  It's the kind of lazy, self-indulgent, self-torturous condition that seems to be my specialty.

* * *

I am not well disciplined.  I never have been.  I like to blame my parents for this. But by one's mid-thirties, one is no longer permitted to blame others for one's shortcomings.

Still though, it is all their fault.

* * *

I am not a daughter.  I am, of course, in technical senses.  I have parents; a mother who became impregnated with and gave birth to me, a father who did his best to roof and clothe and feed.  But there are connotations to the word, "daughter," that have never felt as if they fully applied to me - either in that they were not bestowed upon me or I have not earned them properly.  Not fully understanding what it might mean, it's difficult to put much of a fine point on it.

* * *

I am not a mother.  I am, to my fur babies: four rabbits and a half-grown cat.  I love them and care for them, despite and sometimes because of their bad behavior.  I feed them, treat their illnesses, worry about their feelings, and wonder if they are warm enough at night.  But they are fur babies, not people, and no amount of my talking to them as if they are in fact people will make them so.

In my mind I am a great mother, a wonderful mother; not perfect, but perfectly imperfect.  Caring and involved, doling out just the right amounts of "tough love" and discipline tempered by an understanding ear and unfaltering love and support.  All day, every day, I imagine scenarios: This is how I will teach my children to cook and do laundry and build things and drive a car.  Here is where we will come, early in the morning, to take photographs on real film, plus silly ones on a cheap digital "for posterity."  Here is where I will mark their heights on the door jamb, on the first day of each month, and write their initials next to the date next to the score mark and measure it with a free yardstick from the hardware store.  Here is where we will sit after school, eating pieces of fruit and doing homework, where I will read the books that they are reading in school so we can talk about them together.  These are the fluffy pancakes and real maple syrup that I will serve up on lazy Sunday mornings as we all watch cartoons and read the paper together, sipping coffee and steeling ourselves for the chores that lay ahead.

Ghosts of the children that I do not have - birthed, adopted, fostered; toddler and teenager; black, white, Hispanic, and Asian - wander through the halls of my too-big house, whispering to me: someday.

* * *

I am not disabled, nor am I completely abled either.  I get by, and make do, always feeling that I am straining - but not straining enough to warrant real, permanent rest.  I long for a time when I no longer have to work, but know that without the structure of work I fall apart.  The body I've been given to live in may be why I so despise the in-between places.  I try to see it as a learning experience, a test of character.  But often, it just feels like a big "fuck you" from the universe.

* * *

I am not beautiful.  For a time, when I was young, I thought I might be.  Or I could be.  Or maybe I was, or would have been, had I not been so wretchedly against myself.

* * *

I am not a smoker, but I desperately want to be.  At 35, it may be too late.

Lately I find myself wishing for rain

Lately I find myself wishing for rain most days.  Perhaps it is just for want of relief from the July sun of Louisiana.  Or perhaps it is to remove the affront that lovely skies seem to issue: It is beautiful outside!  You must enjoy it!  Squander it and perish!!!

And when the rain finally comes, as it does so often on summer afternoons, I feel relief in the sadness that comes with it.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

I have decided that Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is the right movie to watch on New Year's Day.

Because it is about magic, and wonder, and continuing to believe that good things can happen even though there's no logical reason to do so.  This is alternately called faith, or hope.  For me, it's just survival.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Apparently I'm crazy. Is this news to anyone else?

...crazy, I just cant sleep.
I'm so excited, I'm in too deep.

Or, maybe,

Crazy, I'm crazy for feeling so lonely.
I'm crazy, crazy for feeling so blue.
Worry, why do I let myself worry?
Wondering what in the world did I do?
I'm crazy for crying, and crazy for trying.

But definitely not that other one.

Crazy.  Crazy.  Crazy.  The word has lost all meaning.

questions in my mind

Why does my coconut water sometimes have the aftertaste of Tomato?

Why does my previously well-behaved rabbit keep peeing on things?

Why won't the weather admit that it's November?

Where is my mind?