Well, not really… but I am seeing a neuro-surgeon this morning, and they do study heads and brains as well as necks and spines… anyway, wish me luck! I’m looking forward to getting a definitive treatment set up!
HBO’s Game of Thrones is returning for its fifth season, and fans are standing for more sword fights, steam, and drama. Traditionally, this kind of mythical-based action genre claims only a small following. However, this eye-catching fantasy drama has successfully drawn in a much larger audience thanks to a fast-paced plot, intriguing characters, and of course a substantial amount of nudity. The show is so huge it has even spawned a range of merchandise and toys with retailers like Toy Zoo and Amazon capitalizing on its huge popularity. Fans are raving about HBO’s biggest hit yet, but why is the show so successful?
Game of Thrones is an adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s fantasy novel series A Song of Ice and Fire. Filmed throughout Europe, Africa and North America, the show follows three different storylines within the kingdoms of Westeros and Essos. It chronicles the lives and struggles among noble families and their attempts to control the Iron Throne.
What’s All the Fuss About?
Much of the program’s appeal is attributed to its fusion of history and fiction. Certain aspects of the plot, settings, and even characters are drawn from events of actual European history. The writers have seamlessly paired these events with darkness, dragons, magic, and sexual drama to appeal to a wider audience.
A New Genre?
The series takes on the existing Hellenic-style genre made popular by films like Ben-Hur and Gladiator. However, ratings suggest that Game of Thrones is the first of its kind. Not only do viewers enjoy traditional sword-and-sandal action, but they’re also treated to just the right amount dark magic as well as camp-style theatricality. Writers also throw in elements of 1990s myth-based classics like Xena: Warrior Princess and Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. The series also taps into the spirited wit of classic literary characters like Robin Hood. It’s the fusion of multiple themes and interconnected plots that has made the show a television phenomenon.
An Escape to Something Real
Game of Thrones undoubtedly gives viewers an escape into a world that’s borderline supernatural. However, realists remain interested due to the writers’ undeniable reliance on history. For the most part, costumes are historically modeled. Furthermore, the plot spits out just the right amount of factual knowledge, avoiding a boring lecture while managing to create somewhat of an alternate history.
A super-star cast certainly doesn’t hurt either. The show has benefited from talented actors and actresses from well known to rookie. Better still, each character is complex, relatable, and easy to identify with.
Game of Thrones has a primal appeal that seems to perfectly balance reality and fiction. There’s also an undeniable real-world simplicity about the plot itself – revenge and triumph. Pair that with a little fantasy and sex, and you can see why the show is so popular!
Life lately has been a blur of emails, phone calls, paper work, and appointments related to Dan’s ongoing medical issues (Fibromyalgia, possible brain tumor that recent tests revealed isn’t Cushing’s but nevertheless could still be and very likely is a tumor on the pituitary gland) and mine (getting a diagnosis of one prominently bulging disc + two minor bulging discs + two vertebrae sliding over each other “like roof shingles” (spondylolisthesis) isn’t exactly uplifting, but it’s so good to have a definitive diagnosis).
Then there’s Dan’s mother, S. Out of respect for her privacy I won’t go into details, but I will say that she had pretty much fallen off the radar about six years ago. Nobody — not Dan, not his four siblings, nor his aunts or uncles (including S’s own sisters) — had a clue as to where she was, or if she was okay. Well, in late February a woman found S and took her in, took her to a hospital for physical and mental health assessments, and then hit the internet in the search for S’s family. This woman, D, contacted Dan and I during the last weekend of February, and we drove out to see S the following Friday. Since then D, Dan, and I have been up to our eyeballs in emails, phone calls, paper work, and appointments to get all possible resources and help set up for S: Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security benefits (S is disabled so she qualifies for Disability Benefits, but she is receiving Death Benefits because the payment is a bit higher), EBT, and so on and so forth. Obviously housing is the priority, but is going to be the most difficult. We’ve also been trying to take care of the practical things, too, such as getting clothing and toiletries for S. Luckily she and I are about the same size, so I was able to give her several complete outfits, along with a pack of brand-new underwear I had received for review (and planned on donating because the cut of the underwear wasn’t my style). Some family, friends, and most notably complete strangers have pitched in to help: offering clothing, monetary donations, suggestions for housing, etc.
Right now S is here for a visit, and us three adults are watching The Naked Gun while I process photos and take care of some emails. Lately the back pain has been spreading to and affecting my left shoulder the most, so I haven’t been doing as much writing as I normally do, simply because the pain is miserable to try to work through. The prescribed pain medication and muscle relaxants and the Lidocaine patches especially help, but more than anything seeing the neuro-surgeon on March 23rd to determine actual treatment is what will hopefully fix all of this!
- My lower back, left shoulder, and right hip hurt; also, my feet and hands have been tingling since this morning
- From the first ER visit on December 29th to a diagnosis on February 27th to an upcoming appointment with a neuro-surgeon on March 23rd, it’s amazing and sucktacular how freaking LONG it can take to diagnose an ongoing painful condition
- Dan is currently playing with tools and wiring in an attempt to get a non-working but totally-kick-ass-if-it-did-work fryer working again – fingers are crossed!
- Aslan is the most stereotypical rescue we’ve ever had (read: nervous, scared, not very used to humans), but he is receptive to touch and is especially comforted and reassured by being held close, so while he’s going to take a lot of “work” we’re in it for the long haul
- Debating going back on SSRIs, because I don’t think I can do it on my own :(