Spaced Out

Spaced Out

Please play these accompanying supersonic vibrations for ultimate blog-eating enjoyment

So the theme has officially been announced!

We’re taking the show further than we ever have before… into S P A C E. House of Verse is blasting off on May 12th, report to the loading bay in 2Funky Music Cafe at 7:00pm and prepare for lift off!

To assist you in your journey to infinity and beyond here’s a handy hitchhikers guide to alienating yourself and the people you love.

Come correct! COSTUMES!


The obvious first choice is to strap into an authentic astronaut suit. Look at her! Look at how much fun she is having! For added effect talk only in sign language and re-enact every Sandra Bullock scene from Gravity.


Why not go one step further and don a rocket inspired look? Have fun speeding your mates to the bar and back piggy-back style; but beware of getting Lost in Space on the galactic dancefloor!


If you want to go even further for your costume why not look a few galaxies over and transform into your favourite alien stereotype? Or if you’re actually an alien, simply strip off your human exosuit.

OH WAIT WE CAN’T FORGET BOWIE

Everyone’s favourite outer space rockstar Ziggy Stardust sadly left Earth to return to the stars, help bring his spirit back down to ground control for another night by following the helpful ‘How to be Bowie’ video below.

 

Next up, who actually are you:

Here you can find various quizzes to discover things about yourself you never even knew! Such as:

What planet are you?! I personally identify as Venus. Not sure? Find out by clicking the link below!
http://www.playbuzz.com/thelaststraw10/which-planet-are-you

What alien are you?? Do you come in peace? Or is it game over man?
http://www.playbuzz.com/rosecall10/what-kind-of-alien-are-you

Do you even have what it takes to be in space? Reckon you’d suit zero gravity? Take this rigorous and authentic astronaut training quiz and find out!
http://www.playbuzz.com/answers10/could-you-be-an-astronaut

 

Now, welcome to Astro-University!

Find out all about the space we live, work and play in. Be the envy of your friends at every cosmic happening with the help of these fascinating talks on all things astrophysical!

 

 

GAME TIME!!

We love games here at House of Verse (maybe a bit too much). Playing them, watching them, making them… It’s all so much fun. We think you’d enjoy making some too. Here’s some weird and wonderful ideas to get you started.

Lost in Space

Steal various objects from friends (ones with a sense of humour preferably) and proceed to hide them around the universe. Inform your friends that they are now Lost in Space and watch as they almost punch you in delight.

No one can hear you scream

The premise of this game is to convince someone they have entered into the total vacuum of space. Persuade a group of people to lip sync talking en masse and watch as your accidental victim goes insane in the blinding nothingness of space.

Ping pong balls

That’s all. Throw them to make shooting stars, decorate them as mini planets, pretend they’re aliens, probably more.

 

Factoids and curios

1) One million Earths could fit inside the sun – and the sun is considered an average-size star.

2) For years it was believed that Earth was the only planet in our solar system with liquid water. More recently, NASA revealed its strongest evidence yet that there is intermittent running water on Mars, too!

3) Comets are leftovers from the creation of our solar system about 4.5 billion years ago – they consist of sand, ice and carbon dioxide.

4) You wouldn’t be able to walk on Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus or Neptune because they have no solid surface!

5) If you could fly a plane to Pluto, the trip would take more than 800 years!

6) An asteroid about the size of a car enters Earth’s atmosphere roughly once a year – but it burns up before it reaches us. Phew!Ar

7) The highest mountain known to man is on an asteroid called Vesta. Measuring a whopping 22km in height, it is three times as tall as Mount Everest!

8) There are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth. That’s at least a billion trillion!

9) The sunset on Mars appears blue.

10) House of Verse is going to be OUTTA THIS WORLD!

 

Feelin’ inspired yet? GOOD!

 

We can’t wait to see what you all come up with on May 12th.

 

Watch out for a whole galaxy of truly interstellar performers being announced soon!

A guide to 19th century Venetian blinds and curtains at the Vatican

A guide to 19th century Venetian blinds and curtains at the Vatican

By Aaron Dudfield

I was reading a book recently called The Sociology of the Paranormal, which is a peer reviewed Sage Research Paper in the Social Sciences. It is an academic study, which asks the question about how many people in the world have had ‘paranormal’ experiences in their lives. It includes a study of Deja Vu (some of the accounts of which are not a simple case of ‘thinking you’ve been here before’), Extrasensory Perception, Clairvoyance, contact with the dead and Mysticism. The data is very conclusive stating “that mystical and psychic phenomena occur seems beyond debate”.

 

It would seem to me that many analytical thinkers would dismiss studies like this in a blink, or try to superimpose some ‘reason’ which is really just guesswork in order to try and shake their validity.

 

I prefer to remain open minded to the idea of not knowing very much and closed minded to the idea that everything can somehow be empirically tested, when very little is actually empirically testable (and even that which is testable and is closest to the mystical, e.g. in the realm of quantum physics, normal understanding of laws must be bent in order to make ‘sense’ of anything and new bafflements constantly occur).

 

Here is a list of a few of the videos which have helped me to move away from analytical thinking and towards a much less denialist approach. They have, in turn, also opened the door to the possibility of true selflessness, a non-animalistic humanity and deep security, without the need to constantly argue about trivialities or try to assert some sort of feigned identity to the people around me.

 

Below I’ve listed a few different ways in which I connect with whatever it is that people connect with which transcends a present state of mind and counters the impotent balderdash of much of analytical science and what I like to call the shouty world (those people who don’t think things are alright and are always perpetuating fear). I’ve tried to add a variety of expressions so that those who have different outlets in terms of creativity and interpretations can connect.

This is a talk by Coleman Barkswith David Darling playing the cello and singing. It talks about how Coleman Barks came to translate Rumi’s poetry, which involves a very interesting and ‘mystical’ experience.

 

A poem by Seamus Heaney: When all the others were away at Mass. This poem brings me to a very present reality. It’s about his mother and him in a moment and in a few short lines he beautifully paints a picture which encapsulates the simplicity and depth of a single moment, where life is lived.

 

Green River Killer Forgiven: For whatever reason, forgiveness is one of those things that seems to be nearly impossible. When somebody does it, and truly does it, it’s very shaking. This particular video inspires me very deeply. A man who showed total disregard for human life shown mercy.

 

Another story of forgiveness beyond all seeming possibility. The whole documentary is amazingly eye opening. There are hundreds of these stories. Including the ones described in this article.

 

This one is for anybody who is interested in dance and the symbolism therein. I believe that this dance addresses all sorts of issues, including those of angry feminism. It paints a beautiful picture of submission and graciousness and I would not consider it to be a performance but rather a sharing of life. The message in it is something I embrace.

 

Quantum Theory, Consciousness & the Implicate Order

by Dr. David Bohm. A Mathematical interpretation of reality. If you’re more of a thinker, here’s something that might start a bit of a thought path for you.

Alfa Mist – Antiphon – This is just incredible.

Wait for me

Destiny

I said I’ll try

Just give me one more chance to prove

Mountains I will move

 

I hear you calling

I’ll wait for you”

 

In short, anything that helps us to worry or feel fear or division is not something I want to take part in. I want to actively avoid those things and immerse myself in anything that takes me beyond not only that, but into a world where things don’t always make perfect sense. I don’t need sense. I need life.

 

If I think back on my best times, they were my most insane, not my most sensible. Following the ‘rules’ does not give rise to anything good and especially not creativity. The shouty people have rules in their heads. I don’t want to do that. I was a shouty person for a very long time and it’s so boring! Just love yourself and immerse yourself in good stuff. Don’t fuel your hatred or your anger by watching things that promote division or add labels to anything (I’m not just talking to the supposed ‘victims’, just for the record, I don’t use that language). Hope this helps somebody.

 

Lots and lots of goodness your way and lots more freedom than that!

 

Can you find another market like this?

Where, with your one rose

you can buy hundreds of rose gardens?

 

Where,

for one seed

get a whole wilderness?

 

For one weak breath,

a divine wind?

 

You’ve been fearful

of being absorbed in the ground,

or drawn up by the air.

 

Now, your waterbead lets go

and drops into the ocean,

where it came from.

 

It no longer has the form it had,

but it’s still water.

The essence is the same.

 

This giving up is not a repenting.

It’s a deep honoring of yourself.

 

When the ocean comes to you

as a lover,

marry at once,

quickly,

for God’s sake!

 

Don’t postpone it!

Existence has no better gift.

 

No amount of searching will find this.

 

A perfect falcon,

for no reason

has landed on your shoulder,

and become yours.

Housemate Tuesdays: Aaron Dudfield

Housemate Tuesdays: Aaron Dudfield

WHO ARE YOU?

Aaron, which is pronounced ‘Air-on’, but without the gap. Like keep your hair on, without the h or exactly like I pronounce it when I introduce myself before you respond ‘nice to meet you Arron’.

WHAT IS YOUR ART?

Defender of anything that isn’t what other people think. Playing guitar to a level that makes it seem like I can play guitar. Finding God in small moments. Growing a beard. Making epic electronic music in secret and not releasing it to the world until it’s so perfect that death doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen when you listen to it.

WHAT’S COMING UP FOR YOU?

I’m just on the way to buy some roasted peanuts, after I’ve done that I’ll probably carry on writing music. It’s actually a really long process. Previously I was just making crappy tunes which were pretty easy because I couldn’t be bothered to sit for hours and work at it. Now that I’ve actually got stuck in, I realise that it’s really hard. Arrangement and production require a lot of patience and care. Both of which are things I don’t have at all. If anybody has any I can get very quickly, I will walk all over you for them. Cheers. I will be putting some new material out over the next few weeks which will be very different to my usual melodramatic, soppy-flop bullshit.

So if you’re interested to listen, feel free to keep up with my Instagram at airs024 . Details will be given on there of pretty much everything I’m doing from now on.

If you don’t have instagram you can get me on twitter at @AaronDudfield

and if you don’t have either of those, I respect you a lot.

The Accidental Feminist Guide of Cinema

The Accidental Feminist Guide of Cinema

by Cynthia Rodríguez

It is no secret that the film industry tends to be quite unfriendly to women both in front of the camera and behind the scenes. TV Tropes, that wonderful encyclopedia of media cliches, includes several stereotypes that have been repeated for decades on the silver screen: disposable women, hysterical women, screaming women, “single women seeking good men”, and — my personal (least) favourite — women in the refrigerator. Outside the realm of fiction, the disparities can still be noticed: in the Oscars, only four women have been nominated for Best Director, and only Kathryn Bigelow has won. A bitter “victory” considering Bigelow’s film The Hurt Locker was your average fake patriotic American Army drama where the “baddies” looked like the son of Mr Patel from the newsstands. Almost like celebrating that we have a female Prime Minister now, ne?

But I digress. As a feminist pop culture fiend, I am always on the lookout for films that are deep and empowering in their own ways, starring multidimensional women and girls, and perhaps critiquing the circumstances in which these people are placed. They don’t have to be films directed by women (I mean, look at Bigelow’s impeccable record: Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty…) or written by women. Heck, they don’t necessarily have to have an explicit feminist agenda. In fact, the most concealed, the better. Like it happened with Mad Max: Fury Road, a bunch of dudes can walk into the cinema expecting super-masculine action but get trolled hard by feminist liberation and, by the time they realise Imperator Furiosa is the main character and Mad Max is just a cog in the dystopian vehicle plot, it’s too late.

Here’s a list of films I’ve found surprisingly feminist and empowering. A lot of them might surprise you:

Yep, Showgirls

One of the worst films of the 90s. Rated NC-17 for excessive nudity, even if half of the time this nudity is not of a sexual nature — literally, people getting changed in their dressing rooms. It depicts the strong friendship between smalltown Nomi and costume designer Molly. Nomi is strong and defends her line of work, and once she becomes famous, she prefers to stick to her values and avenge her friend than to turn a blind eye and stand up as others (quite literally) fall down. Also, that dance move thing with your hands across your face is legendary.

Sucker Punch 

Zach Snyder’s dream movie about a group of girls locked in a cabaret/mental institution/realm of death and destruction who plot a way to leave their captors through the power of erotic dance, sorority and subconscious fantasy fighting. The soundtrack is packed with girl power: Björk, Skunk Anansie, Emiliana Torrini, Alison Mosshart, the film’s own Emily Browning, most of them covering iconic rock anthems originally written and performed by men. To those who see Sucker Punch as Zach’s wet dream come true, it might be weird to know that his wife Deborah was a producer. Once you see it as the accidental feminist masterpiece it actually is, it all makes sense.

Mean Girls

Yes, there is a lot of girl-on-girl hate and gossip, but there’s also love and camaraderie as Cady Heron finds herself. She may have started as a Trojan Horse aiming to destroy “The Plastics”, but the more she gets to know them, the more she knows their circumstances and the more she knows they are as flawed and insecure as everyone else. The film, co-written by Tina Fey, also shows that every single High School clique has its own inner conflicts and that, after quite a cheesy session at the school’s gym, a lot of rivalries can be mended once we stop tearing each other down.

Josie and the Pussycats

OK, on to the hardcore shit. The ill-fated live action film adaptation of the cartoon series not only was extremely femme-centric and Bechdel-approved, but it was a sharp critique on capitalism and the fusion of marketing and media. Brand logos as aggressive wallpapers, potentially racist agenda prioritising Rachael Leigh Cook’s Josie over Rosario Dawson’s Valerie, TV hosts as pawns of The Powers that Be, and tons of MK-ULTRA imagery and concepts. A surgical deconstruction of pre-9/11’s American teenage entertainment.

 

These are just a few examples of films that may look shallow or objectifying, but once you get to explore them through a critical eye, you’re blown away by their feminist magic. Also, you can see them with your more “basic” friends, relatives and darlings. Gee, I haven’t even gone further and talked about accidentally positive queer and trans/non-binary led films. Maybe in another post.

 

Any other examples you can think of, beloved readers?