Sunday, IKEA, and Oz

IKEA, Frisco, TexasToday is Sunday, July 7, 2013.

Speaking of Sunday … here is my weekly weight loss update. I have dropped from 200 pounds to 196 pounds in the last week. Walking 10,000 steps in a day several day during the week helped. 10,000 steps is about 4 miles. I also stopped all M&M, Kit Kat and Snickers consumption at work and home. I dramatically reduced the number of soft drinks I consume. I replaced the majority with coffee or decaf drinks. The problem with this is the aspartame has caused me joint pain.

Speaking of pain … today my wife and I attended a new Bible fellowship class at church. Almost all from our old class are attending this class. Change is still painful. The Bible teacher was excellent. The class was a little noisy and rowdy before the lesson.

Speaking of rowdy … No one was rowdy when I visited IKEA in Frisco, Texas this afternoon. The familiar blue and yellow colors of the giant IKEA store greet me from a half-mile away. Drawing nearer to the store the traffic equivalent of a rock concert at the American Airlines Center requires negotiation. A trip to IKEA is worth the effort. Whether it is the hike in from the remote parking spot you are happy to find or just snaking your way through two levels of merchandise, it is an adventure for your senses that also includes fulfilling your daily exercise needs. A full palette of colorful merchandise is waiting to be mixed and matched. Today I heard over a dozen languages being spoken by the patrons. English was not the most common tongue spoken. Your senses are popping from the experience. IKEA is a place of ideas. Demonstration rooms display designs demanding application in your home. People use tape measures to see if the dream transforms from store to their available space. I’m not sure I will ever grow tired of visiting the IKEA store. The store and their helpful associates facilitate ideas into reality. I wrote this to tell Karen Garrison what it was like. This picture is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. The IKEA store in Frisco, TX, USA. Author: Rainchill. It seems everyone had IKEA as part of their weekend plans.

Speaking of weekend plans … I saw the movie “Oz: The Great and Powerful”. Oz the Great and Powerful is set in the year 1905, 20 years before the events of the original Wizard of Oz novel. The film features several artistic allusions and technical parallels to the books and the 1939 film.

The film’s opening sequence is presented in black-and-white, fading into color when the protagonist arrives in Oz; additionally, the aspect ratio gradually widens from 4:3 Academy ratio to 2.35:1 widescreen, and the audio transitions from monaural to surround sound. As in the 1939 film, Glinda travels in giant bubbles, and the Emerald City is actually emerald; in the novel, characters wear tinted glasses to make it appear so. The iconic green look of the Wicked Witch of the West is closer to her look in the classic film, as the Witch is a short, one-eyed crone in the novel. The Wicked Witches are portrayed as sisters, an idea which originated in the 1939 film. Several actors who play Oz characters make cameos in the Kansas segments, such as Frank, Oscar’s assistant whom he refers to as his ‘trained monkey’ (Frank’s “Oz” counterpart is the winged monkey Finley) and a young girl in a wheelchair who serves as the Kansas counterpart to China Girl (in Kansas Oscar was unable to make the wheelchair-bound young girl walk and he gets a chance to do so when he repairs China Girl’s broken legs). Another character, Annie (Michelle Williams), informs Oscar that she has been proposed to by a John Gale, presumably hinting at Dorothy Gale’s parental lineage.

Other referenced characters include the Scarecrow, who is built by the townspeople as a scare tactic; the Tin Woodman, whose creator is introduced as the Master Tinker; and the Cowardly Lion, who is frightened away by Oscar after attacking Finley. Similarly, various other races of Oz are depicted besides the Munchkins; the Quadlings, the china doll inhabitants of Dainty China Country, and and the Winkies (who went unnamed in the classic film). Similarly, Glinda – at least during her temporary banishment – is referred to by her title in the novel (the Good Witch of the South), unlike the 1939 film, where her character’s title is “The Good Witch of the North” (due to her character being merged with The Good Witch of the North). Theodora’s tears leave scars on her face, reflecting her weakness to water (which would cause her eventual downfall against Dorothy the savior of Oz). Also, Oz is presented as a real place as it is in the novel, and not a dream as the 1939 film presents, though this could be seen as a reinterpretation of what the previous film implied, rather than faithfulness to the novel. Source on “OZ”:

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