quinta-feira, 30 de dezembro de 2010

LOVE !


I STILL BELIEVE IT CAN BE DONE !
DARE TO DREAM !

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE,FELIZ ANO NOVO A TODOS,Abraços de Portugal para o mundo_BB

quinta-feira, 23 de dezembro de 2010

The new blue dress / O vestidinho azul

Recently I rediscovered a short story that I fell in love with a long time ago. I was just browsing through a large and dusty pile of old books and papers, and "this" old book I used to read when I was just a young kid, sort of jumped out of "nowhere" and caught my attention.
_There you are !"I said".And browsing trough the pages of this dusty old book I found once again a short story that I believe is quite special and unique. You won´t find the meaning of life upon it,or some incredible "stuff" that will boost your mind into another dimension or the fairy realm. It comes with no special powers,and you don´t have to be a brain surgeon to understand it,even a 5 year old will, but sometimes,"sometimes" simplicity will travel a great distance and achieve the most magnificent acts,much more than any other sophisticated "gizmo"or a multimillion dollar spaceship.
It´s just a very simple story based on real events that happened a long time ago, like 100 years or so, and this is what really made me want to share it with you,due to the fact that this short story being so old, and all protagonists on it are most probably dead ; but the narrative is so alive,so real even for today´s standards,there´s such honesty upon it that I felt it wouldn´t make much sense if I kept it to myself, because in my heart I truly hope and believe that the single act of purchasing a blue little dress for a poor little girl,(or any other act of kindness) the single,unique and magnificent act of giving something of "value" to one who owns "nothing" develops a wonderful chain of events that will live on forever and echoe in eternity.
I hope you enjoy this short story as much as I did,may it echoe in your heart and may we "all",all over the world, find happiness and love.
I want to believe_,Merry Christmas Everyone_BB

The New Blue Dress
When spring came to the city of Cleveland, Ohio, in 1909, it did not change Gates avenue. The people who lived on the pretty streets near Gates Avenue were making gardens, painting their houses and getting their lawn mowers ready for the summer. But Gates avenue continued to look dirty and ugly.
Gates Avenue was a short street. But it seemed long because it was so ugly. Most of the the families who lived there had very little money. They never expected to have much more.
Sometimes the men had jobs and sometimes they didn´t. Their houses had not been painted in many years and did not even have running water. The Gates Avenue families carried their water from the hydrants on the street corners.
The street itself was ugly, too. It had no pavement and no street light. The railway at one end of Gates Avenue added noise and dirt.
Most of the little girls in the school near Gates Avenue wore pretty new clothes that spring. But the little girl from Gates Avenue wore the same dirty dress that she had worn all winter. It was probably the only dress she owned.
Her teacher sighed. The little girl was so nice! She always worked hard in school; she was always polite and friendly. But her face was dirty and her hair was untidy.
One day the teacher said, "Will you wash your face before you come to school tomorrow morning? Please do that for me." The teacher could see that the girl was pretty under the dirt.
A clean face
The next morning the child´s pretty face had been washed. Her hair was clean and tidy, too. Before the little girl went home that afternoon, the teacher said, "Now, dear, please ask your mother to wash your dress."
But the little girl continued to wear the dirty dress. "Her Mother is probably not interested in her," the teacher thought. So she bought a bright blue dress and gave it to the little girl. The child took the present eagerly and hurried home as fast as she could.
The next morning she came to school in the new blue dress, and she was clean and tidy. She told the teacher, "My mother was surprised when she saw me this morning in my new dress. My father wasn´t at home; he had gone to work. But he will see me at supper this evening."
When he father saw her in the new blue dress, he was surprised to find that he had a pretty little girl. When the family sat down to eat supper, he was even more surprised to find a cloth on the table. The family had never used a tablecloth before. "What is the cloth for?" he asked.
"We´re going to be more tidy here," his wife said. "It isn´t nice to have a house that is dirty and untidy when our daughter is so clean."
After supper the mother started to wash the floors. Her husband watched for a little while without saying anything. Then he went outside into the back yard and began to repair the fence. The next evening, with the family´s help, he started digging for a garden.
During the next week, the man who lived in the next house watched what the little girl´s family was doing. Then he started to paint his house for the first time in ten years.
A few days later the young minister of a church near Gates Avenue passed the two houses and and saw the men working. He noticed that there was no pavement o Gates Avenue and no street light. He knew the houses had no running water. "People who are trying so hard to have clean homes and tidy yards on a street like this should be helped," the minister said to himself.
He went to see the men who were at the head of the city government. And he went to see the important businessmen and the leaders f churches and schools. He asked them to help the families living on Gates Avenue.
A few months later Gates Avenue looked like a different street. There was pavement now on the avenue. There was a light on the street corner. The houses had running water. Six months after the little girl got her new blue dress, Gates Avenue was a tidy street of friendly homes where respectable families lived.
People who knew about the changes called it the "Gates Avenue Cleanup." Everywhere the young minister went, he told the story of this miracle.
Other cities heard of the "cleanup" and began to organize their own "cleanup" campaigns. Since 1913, thousands of U.S. towns and cities have organized campaigns for painting and repairing homes. For the people who live in the homes, life has been made better.
Who knows what miracles may happen when a teacher gives a little girl a new blue dress?
PT/Portuguese Translation
Recentemente reencontrei uma pequena história pela qual me apaixonei há muito tempo atrás. Eu vasculhava uma pilha grande de livros empoeirados e antigos e papeladas, e um livro antigo que costumava ler quando ainda era puto saltou do "nada" e chamou-me a atenção.
_Aqui estás tu! "disse para comigo". E ao reler as páginas deste livro velho e empoeirado encontrei uma vez mais um pequeno conto que acredito ser muito especial e único. Tu não vais encontrar o sentido da vida nele, ou alguma "coisa" incrível que vai transportar a tua mente para outra dimensão, ou para o reino das fadas, ele não vem com poderes especiais, e não é necessário ser um cirurgião do cérebro para entendê-lo, mesmo uma criança 5 anos de idade consegue entender este conto, mas às vezes, "às vezes" a simplicidade consegue percorrer uma grande distância e consegue realizar os actos mais magníficos, muito mais do que qualquer outra "engenhoca" sofisticada ou uma nave espacial que custa milhões de dólares.
É apenas uma história muito simples, baseado em factos reais que aconteceu faz muito tempo, talvez há 100 anos ou mais, e foi isso que me fez querer realmente compartilhar esta pequena história convosco, devido ao facto desta pequena história ser tão velha, e todos os protagonistas que nela participaram provavelmente já estarem mortos, mas a narrativa continua tão viva, tão real, mesmo para os padrões actuais, existe tal honestidade nesta que senti não haver muito sentido em conservá-la apenas para mim. Porque no meu coração, eu espero e acredito que o simples acto de comprar um vestidinho azul para uma menina pobre, (ou qualquer outro acto de bondade) Daquele Acto Único, único e magnífico, que consiste em dar algo de "valor " a quem não possui "nada", desenvolve uma cadeia de eventos maravilhosos que vão viver para sempre e ecoam pela eternidade fora.
Espero que gostem deste conto tanto como eu,faço votos que ecoe no vosso coração e que "todos" nós, em todo o mundo,possamos encontrar a tão desejada felicidade e o amor.
Eu quero acreditar_, Feliz Natal a todos_BB

O Vestidinho Azul
Quando a primavera chegou à cidade de Cleveland, Ohio, em 1909, não alterou o aspecto de Gates Avenue. As pessoas que viviam nas ruas asseadas bem perto de Gates Avenue estavam a fazer jardins, pintavam as casas e preparavam os seus cortadores relva para o verão. Mas Gates Avenue continuava com um aspecto sujo e feio.
Gates Avenue era uma pequena rua. Mas parecia muito maior, por causa do seu mau aspecto. A maioria das famílias que lá viviam tinha muito pouco dinheiro. E estes nunca esperavam ter muito mais.
Às vezes, os homens tinham empregos e outras vezes não. As suas casas não eram pintadas à muitos anos e nem sequer tinham água canalizada. As famílias iam buscar água ás bocas de incêndio nas esquinas.
A rua em si era feia também. Não era asfaltada e não havia luz na rua. O caminho de ferro na extremidade da Avenida adicionava barulho e sujidade.
A maioria das meninas da escola perto de Gates Avenue usavam roupas novas naquela primavera. Mas havia uma menina em Gates Avenue que ainda usava o mesmo vestido sujo que tinha usado durante todo o inverno. Era provavelmente o único vestido que possuía.
A sua professora suspirou. Era tão boa menina! Ela sempre se aplicava arduamente na escola, ela era sempre educada e amável. Mas o rosto dela e o cabelo estavam sempre sujos.
Um dia a professora disse: "Vais vai lavar a cara antes de vir para a escola amanhã de manhã? Por favor, faz isso por mim." A professora podia ver que a menina era bonita por debaixo da sujidade.
Uma cara limpa
Na manhã seguinte, o rosto bonito da criança surgiu lavado. O seu cabelo estava limpo e penteado, também. Antes da menina voltar para casa naquela tarde, a professora disse: "Agora, querida, por favor, pede à tua mãe para lavar o teu vestido."
Mas a menina continuava a usar o mesmo vestido sujo. "A mãe provavelmente não se interessa por ela,"pensou a professora. Então, ela comprou um vestido azul brilhante e deu de presente para a menina. A criança pegou no presente com avidez e cheia de pressa correu para casa o mais rápido que pôde.
Na manhã seguinte, ela veio para a escola com o vestido azul novo, e ela estava limpa e aprumada. A menina disse à professorA: "A minha mãe ficou espantada quando me viu esta manhã com o meu vestido novo o meu pai não estava em casa;. ele tinha ido trabalhar, mas ele vai me ver na hora do jantar esta noite.."
Quando o pai a viu com o vestido azul novo, ficou surpreso ao descobrir que tinha uma linda menina. Quando a família se sentou para comer a ceia, ele estava ainda mais surpreso ao encontrar uma toalha de mesa sobre esta. A família nunca tinha usado uma toalha de mesa antes. "Para que é a toalha de mesa?" perguntou.
"Vamos ser mais arrumados por aqui", disse a esposa. "Não é bom ter uma casa suja e desarrumada quando a nossa filha está tão limpinha."
Depois do jantar, a mãe começou a lavar o chão. O marido observou durante um bocado sem dizer nada. Então ele saiu para o quintal e começou a reparar o muro. Na noite seguinte, com a ajuda de toda a família, eles começaram a tratar do jardim.
Durante a próxima semana, o homem que morava na casa ao lado assistiu ao que a família da menina fazia. Então ele começou a pintar a sua casa pela primeira vez em dez anos.
Poucos dias depois, o jovem pastor de uma igreja perto de Gates Avenue passou pelas duas casas, e viu os homens a trabalhar. Ele notou que não havia o pavimento naquela avenida nem luz de rua. Ele sabia que as casas não tinham água canalizada. "Pessoas que lutavam tão arduamente para ter casas limpas e jardins bonitos numa rua como esta devem ser ajudadas", disse o clérigo a si mesmo.
Ele foi ver os homens que estavam à frente do governo da cidade. Entrou para ver os empresários importantes e os líderes das igrejas e escolas. Pediu-lhes para ajudar as famílias que viviam em Gates Avenue.
Poucos meses depois, Gates Avenue parecia uma rua diferente. Existia agora pavimento na avenida. Havia uma luz na esquina da rua. As casas tinham água canalizada. Seis meses depois daquela menina começar a usar o seu vestido azul novo, Gates Avenue era uma rua de casas arrumadas, amigável e onde viviam famílias respeitáveis.
As pessoas que sabiam sobre as alterações a chamou de "A limpeza de Gates Avenue". Por todo o lado o jovem clérigo contou a história deste milagre.
Outras cidades ouviu falar da "limpeza" e começaram a organizar as suas próprias campanhas de "limpeza". Desde 1913, milhares de vilas e cidades dos EUA organizaram campanhas para a pintura e reparação de casas. Para as pessoas que vivem nas casas, a vida tem sido bem melhor.
Quem sabe que milagres podem acontecer quando uma professora oferece a uma menina um vestido azul novo?

sexta-feira, 17 de dezembro de 2010

The End of the "Pink Era"


I wasn´t sure if I should post this being so close to Christmas and all and bring to the table such a... (I cannot find the proper word) but the news about Blake Edwards death kind off caught me off guard,I mean I was a fan of the Man´s Artwork (If you believe cinema is Art, I do) and whenever I think about the Pink Panther movies I´ve watched trough my teens I always crack up laughing. I mean, Blake Edwards was the man with the plan,the Great puppeteer,the genius director behind the movie stage that made the magic happen and brought to us some of the most hilarious movies that one can ever see,I still remember laughing my AS* off until tears would run down my face and I would grab my rib cage from the hurt that I felt and the fear that something inside me would explode from laughing so hard. I mean, there are comedies,there are silly movies and then there´s genius and THAT was the sort of movies Blake Edwards would direct,movies you would laugh so hard you would fall off a chair (I DID).


I don´t mean to sound disrespectful "BUT" associated with such great comedies Blake Edwards name will also go down with another great name long departed and that was "Peter Sellers", because truth be told the Pink Panther series would have never been such a hit if it weren´t for the sheer genius of this great actor that impersonated the "Inspector Clouseau" Character so well, no one could replace him,there´s a time and an era for everything in life and I do not mean the sequels from The Pink Panther after Peter Sellers death were bad or not so funny,I´m just saying that at that specific time true magic happened between the alliance of these two (even, as the story goes if they weren´t in the best of terms with each other and lived a rather conflictuos and strange work relationship way far from the "healthy" work relationship "displayed" for public appearances, but it´s not my place to judge, I´m just a movie fan. I am also wondering if The Pink Panther character and cartoons (unbelievable great stuff also) will not be forsaken over the years since the "man with the plan" is now dead.

You shall be missed Mr.Edwards ...( The Pink panther theme tune would sound great here wouldn´t it ?)_BB

segunda-feira, 13 de dezembro de 2010

Sowing the Seeds of Love


A great song filled with some great metaphors which are so alive today as they were back in 89 when I first heard this._BB
Tears for Fears / Sowing the Seeds of Love

High time we made a stand & shook up the views of the common man

And the love train rides from coast to coast

DJ's the man we love the most

Could you be, could you be squeaky clean

And smash any hope of democracy

As the headline says you're free to choose

There's egg on your face and mud on your shoes

One of these days they're gonna call in the ruse, yeah



(Sowing the seeds of love) anything is possible

(Seeds of love) when you're sowing the seeds of love

(Sowing the seeds of love)

(Sowing the seeds of love) anything is possible

(Seeds of love) sowing the seeds of love (Sowing the seeds)



I spy tears in their eyes

They look to the skies for some kind of divine intervention

Food goes to waste, so nice to eat, so nice to taste

Politician Granny with your high ideals

Have you no idea how the majority feels

So without love and a promised land

We're fools to the rules of a government plan

Kick out the style, bring back the jam



(Sowing the seeds of love) anything (seeds of love)

(Sowing the seeds of love) (Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love)

Sowing the seeds, the birds and the bees, my girlfriend and me in love



Feel the pain, talk about it, if you're a worried man then shout about it

Open hearts, feel about it, open minds, think about it

Everyone read about it, everyone scream about it

Everyone (everyone, yeah yeah)

Everyone (everyone) read about it, read about it

Read it in the books in the crannies

And the nooks there are books to read...Chorus!!!



(Sowing the seeds of love) Oh, the seeds of love

We're sowing the seeds, sowing the seeds



We're sowing the seeds of love. we're sowing the seeds

Sowing the seeds of love, we're sowing the seeds of love

(Mr. England sowing the seeds of love)



(Time to eat all your words, swallow your pride, open your eyes)

Time to eat all your words, swallow your pride, open your eyes

High time we made a stand (time to eat all your words)

And shook up the views of the common man (swallow your pride)

And the love train rides from coast to coast (open your eyes)

Every minute of every hour "I Love a Sunflower" (open your eyes)

And I believe in love power (open your eyes)

Love power, love (open your eyes) power



(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love…Sowing the seeds of love)

(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love)

We're sowing the seeds (sowing the seeds of love)

Sowing the seeds of love, we're sowing the seeds (seeds of love)

Sowing the seeds, an end to need, and the politics of greed with love

(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love, sowing the seeds of love)

(Sowing the seeds of love) anything (seeds of love) anything

(Sowing the seeds of love, Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love)

(Sowing the seeds, an end to need, and the politics of greed with love)

(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love, sowing the seeds of love)

quinta-feira, 9 de dezembro de 2010

The Piano / O Piano

As winter approaches and along with it the rainy season It comes to mind a movie that I really like, and that movie is the Piano (1993) . The piano isn´t the sort of movie that you would watch comfortably on a Sunday afternoon eating popcorn and drinking cola, for I don´t believe this is the proper mindset that a person engages when watching a movie drama ( at least I cannot watch a movie drama with such lightness of heart,but maybe that´s just me). I mean, let's not be too fanatical to the point of bringing a box of Kleenex before you put the DVD on antecipating an abundant tear flow LOL, what I mean is simply that this is a movie (according to my point of view) filled with wonder, Intoxicating, magical, perfect, or to be perfectly clear it has all of those essential features that give the word "cinema" a true significance has major art work and not as mere entertainment for the masses.


For me, this was without a doubt one of the movies that most captivated my sensitivity to the drama movie genre I mean, the script is phenomenal and filled with genius, originality and innovation compiled in a story that fills and satisfies all the corners of the most eager minds, but also with an array of excellent actors whose performance is great, excellent photography, decor, wardrobe and countless more number of details until you reach the climax with an electrifying soundtrack performed by Michael Nyman that still remains vivid in the minds and hearts of many thousands of music lovers around the world.

I remember perfectly the first time I saw The Piano, and feeling that unusual sense of being carried from the movie theater chair straight inside the screen,and this long before any mention of 3D movies. Even today whenever I see the first minutes of this movie I can almost sense the smell from the beach, taste the sea salt,hear the creaking wood of the piano swollen from Winter´s humidity and become mesmerized with the piano music pieces. And that magnificent story, so human, so brutally real, unlike any other multimillion, money making, fairy tale love story covered with a dozen layers of sweet love and topped with hugs, kisses and making out scenes that would turn it into such a boring and empty love story that It would leave a bitter taste in the mouth of anyone who believes Himself as an intelligent viewer. I do not want to spoil the ending of the movie to those who never saw it but The Piano also has its dosage of passionate love scenes and it also has an happy ending,but there´s such beauty in such scenes,such sobriety that it will fall far from any sort of cheap love plot and that´s part of its magnificence since it is a love story but it is also a great drama_However _It isn´t such a drama that would fail into giving a happy ending to the leading characters, what is truly captivating are the turns that the story gives in such an intelligent fashion that makes one attentive and curious until the very end. And there is also the originality of the action that unfolds in New Zealand. Instead of showing some sort of vision from Paradise painted in a flowery and colorful brochure that pimps sex,sea and sand to wealthy tourists it brings down all myths and presents a movie covered with a bleak and greyish winter color in a barren land where humidity will cut you down to the bone and the air is filled with the smell of rotting wood and the filth most common to those that struggle,live,love,survive,have children and grow inside a mud field. The great brilliance of such scenario is that within it you will also witness acts of sheer beauty,sensuality and enchantment.

A movie worth watching once more at winter time, for sure._BB

PT/Portuguese Translation :
Com a aproximação do Inverno e a chegada das chuvas vem-me sempre à memória um filme que me diz muito e esse filme é o Piano. O Piano não é sem dúvida aquele género de filme que tu possas assistir confortavelmente numa tarde de Domingo a comer pipocas e a beber cola,pelo menos não creio que seja esse o estado de espírito que um pessoa tenha presente quando vê um filme do género drama (pelo menos eu não consigo assistir a um drama com essa ligeireza de espírito).Também não vamos ser fanáticos ao ponto de trazer uma caixa de Kleenex antes de colocar o filme no DVD na antecipação do fluxo abundante de lágrimas LOL ,o que eu quero dizer é tão somente que este é um filme que segundo o meu ponto de vista é maravilhosamente inebriante,mágico,perfeito ou para ser perfeitamente claro possui todas aquelas características essenciais que podem denominar o "cinema" como uma forma de arte maior e não como mero entretenimento das massas.


Para mim este foi sem dúvida alguma um dos filmes que mais cativou a minha sensibilidade ao género dramático ao invés sem dúvida por causa do guião cuja genialidade é fenomenal,cuja originalidade e inovação da história preenche e sacia todos os recantos das mentes mais ávidas,mas também pela panóplia de excelentes actores cujo desempenho é formidável,a excelente fotografia,decor,guarda roupa e mais um sem número de pormenores infímos até chegar ao climax com uma banda sonora electrizante interpretada por Michael Nyman que ainda hoje permanece viva na memória de muitos milhares de amantes de música pelo mundo fora.

Recordo-me perfeitamente da primeira vez que vi O Piano e daquela sensação pouco fora do comum de ser transportado para dentro da Tela de cinema muito antes de qualquer prenúncio ou menção ao género de filmes 3D. Ainda hoje ao ver os primeiros minutos do filme consigo sentir o odor da praia,o gosto a sal do mar,o ranger da madeira do Piano com a humidade do Inverno e a intoxicação inebriante dos trechos musicais. E aquela história magnífica, tão humana, tão brutalmente real,tão diferente de qualquer historieta de amor cujo finalzinho doce e repleto de beijos,abraços e amassos é tão monótono e vazio de sentido que deixa um sabor amargo na boca de qualquer um que se assume como um espectador inteligente. Não pretendo estragar o final do filme áqueles que nunca o viram mas O Piano acaba bem,é um drama_Sim !_porém não é um dramalhão ao ponto de não dar um final feliz aos personagens,o que é cativante são as voltas inteligentes que a história dá até chegar ao derradeiro ponto final. E a originalidade da acção que se desenrola numa atmosfera tão exótica como é a Nova Zelandia, mas que ao invés de se apresentar com aquela brochura colorida e florida digna de uma antevisão do paraíso e que vende sexo,praia e sol a turistas endinheirados deita todos os mitos por terra e apresenta um filme Invernal,com uma atmosfera inóspita,húmida com o cheiro da madeira podre das árvores e a sujidade inerente a todos aqueles que convivem diariamente com a lama. O mais brilhante é o facto de apesar de todo este cenário existirem momentos de rara beleza e sensualidade bem equilibrados durante a narração da história.

Este é sem dúvida um filme apaixonante que vale a pena rever._BB

segunda-feira, 6 de dezembro de 2010

sábado, 4 de dezembro de 2010

Alfama´s Lovebirds

I won´t lie to you,but The Lovebirds (2007) isn´t exactly "the sharpest tool in the shed"_ cinematographically speaking that is. I won´t be so bold to tell you that this is a great movie,to be frank in my opinion this is just average cinema;However_for me a Portuguese citizen born and practically raised in Lisbon city The Lovebirds is much more than a mere curiosity,for there are certain nuances upon it that made me smile out of pure joy. It is a great link between Portugal and the U.S. but it´s much more than that,it is indeed a great link between two very different cities (Lisbon and New York) but each with a similar "soul" that makes these two seem almost like siblings that were separated from each other when they were born for some mysterious reason.


The Lovebirds is almost like a reunion of these two after many years where they share similar stories among each other in some Bar filled with cigarette smoke after hours on a rotten part of town (wherever that is), even though these "stories" took place in very different atmospheres, there is that sense of Deja Vu that only siblings seem to be aware. Maybe I´m "pushing the envelope" I´m no film critic, I´m just an ordinary guy that likes "the movies" but It was great to watch on the same screen and sharing the same background a couple of great actors that I really respect such as Michael Imperioli and John Ventimiglia ( you probably know these two from the Sopranos) with a few faces known to me from the Portuguese movie screens.

There was much more to say but i´m not that good with words (even in my native tongue) I´ll leave with with a short clip from The Lovebirds I found on YouTube and ask of you to watch it to the very end where you can see a very short dialogue between Michael Imperioli and Ana Padrão a Portuguese Actress,and maybe just maybe you will find out why I love this movie._BB

Michael Imperioli _Those buildings down there are so, old...look how they lean against each other crumbling ! It´s like they´re holding each other up for stability but if you´d just touch one, they´d all fall apart and break.


Ana Padrão_ You know?...earthquake?!

Michael Imperioli_Yeah,1755 right ?All of Lisbon got destroyed.

Ana Padrão_Not Alfama...not us.

Michael Imperioli_You survived !

Ana Padrão_Yes !
 
*All underlined words are linked to Web pages.