Saturday, May 19, 2012

There's Homework to Do (part II)

First order of business:  Please help us spread the word! If you blog or tweet or post on Facebook, will you give the upcoming event just a sentence or two? Maybe a link? Muchas gracias. What other ways can you think of to publicize? I plan to put a note on the bulletin board at our library. Thanks for the reminder to share the fun, bccmee.

Prepare your mind:  More than one of you suggested reading the book North & South by Elizabeth Gaskell. Not a bad idea at all, and will give you a lot of food for thought when it comes to watching the character development in the film. The book is in the public domain, so if you don't own a copy or can't borrow it, and you don't want to purchase it, you can find it free at Project Gutenberg. There are also free audio versions on Librivox.

If you do decide to purchase a copy, and/or you still need the DVD, please consider using the Amazon associate links on RichardArmitageNet (found under the picture of the day on the home page) and they will send their proceeds to one of Richard's preferred charities. Any time you shop Amazon for anything, you could use their link to do good.

Food:  Hmmm, what do they actually eat on screen in North & South? There's the workers' stew John enjoys, and there's Margaret's noisy, revolutionary toast. I always supposed she was buttering it, but perhaps she's spreading marmalade. And what does Hannah serve at her dinner besides soup? Help me out here. Is there more food mentioned in the book than the film? I can't remember.

For more modern fare, how about Thornton's chocolates? That could represent Richard Armitage's smooth, chocolatey voice. And I saw some tweets about other "theme" food. Who said cupcakes with top hats? There's the old standby, popcorn, which could denote Fanny's popping attitude. Maybe have black licorice for the angry crow. Or try my favorite, Hot Tamales candy, which could represent the fire from the old dragon, or all that other smoldering that's going on. Though none of us need any added heat after waiting for the lovers' passion to finally steam up those train windows.

Drinks:  Tea is of course appropriate. But if you can do it responsibly, I'd recommend a glass (or three) of wine.

Naturally you could go for soft drinks. Grape Crush in honor of Boucher? (Ooh. Can't believe I went there.) What about having a pint with Higgins, or some cognac and a cigar with the masters, Irish whiskey for the strike breakers? I'm thinking I might play a drinking game - every time someone says "tittle" or "tattle"-- drink.  Ha!

Costume:  If putting on a bonnet is your thing, go for it. Be prepared to share pictures. And do tell how long it took to iron your petticoats. Or go for comfort and find your sweatpants and a cozy top. I'm thinking I need a t-shirt that says, "My other shirt is a corset."

Don't forget a cuddly blanket, or a cuddly significant other to keep you warm.

Environment:  I have some small children. I also have a wonderful husband and some older children. I am enlisting their help in planning so that I can have "just for mommy" time and they can also have some fun. We will be preparing their own entertainment with activities, movies, games and snacks. Do I really need to say in another part of the house?

Now how about some added realism? Dig that train set out of your Christmas box and have the little choo-choo make a lap around the living room every once in awhile. Buy yourself some yellow roses, and don't forget to look back. Look back at me.

Links are in the sidebar to Twitter and Facebook, and the tabs above are to pages for Tweetchat and the timetables.

Thanks to everyone who made suggestions. More ideas? Did I leave out something important? Please share in the comments!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

There's Homework to Do (part I)

First thing:  You need a way to watch North & South with us. If you're able, I suggest watching on DVD. My first viewings had been of the Netflix version but after watching the DVD I finally saw how many lovely little scenes had been cut out for the American market. Not enough to ruin the story, but enough that seeing those scenes helped me fall in love with the production all over again. The DVD also has extras including a deleted scenes track of scenes that didn't make it into either version (I finally understand why all the fruit baskets) and an interview with Richard Armitage.

Screencap courtesy of

Second thing:  Prepare for your tweeting. I made a handy page of links HERE if you need help getting started. (It's also one of the tabs near the top of this page.) Make sure your Twitter account is in good standing. Take a gander at our Tweetchat room to make sure you know how it works, maybe trying it out by tweeting a short message like "I can't wait for the first weekend in June!" When I was figuring out Tweetchat, I would sometimes go back and forth to my home Twitter page just to make sure my tweets looked like I wanted them to. Don't forget that if you type from Tweetchat, it will automatically add the # tag you're following.
If you have a protected (locked) Twitter account, I think you'll need to unlock it for the tweet-a-long if you want participants other than your followers to see your contributions.

Thirdly:  And, do I really need to say it? Make sure you have an internet connection from your viewing area. If you'll be at a coffee shop or library (maybe with a group?) figure out how their wifi works. Or make sure you have phone reception. If you're watching your DVD from your laptop, you'll probably want another way to tweet.

What else can you think of? Let me know in the comments. I'll do another Homework post next week.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Tweeting Our admiRAtion (redux)

This post has been whooshed here from ArmitageTweetup. Fanny and I decided the name ArmitageWatch better reflected what we're all trying to represent. Thanks for following us through this slight hiccup.

Hello to all Richard Armitage admirers!
If, like me, you can't believe how far away December seems, this blog may help.

Considering the dearth of news about RA lately, a few of us on Twitter decided that having a tweetup/tweetfest/tweetchat for North & South would be a fun activity. At the moment I'm not very organized on this brand new blog, but I can point you in the direction of this informative post at Fanny's blog. Fanny took the ball and ran with it, as you can see. If you can help us spread the news, we'd be grateful. Blogging about it is much appreciated. Don't forget the tag #RichardArmitage or #RichardArmitageNS if you're tweeting.

In the next few days I'll post more about the North & South tweetchat, including links to Facebook and pages just for us. If I can help you spread the word about a real tweetup in your area to watch with a group, please let me know. It would be awesome to hear how you're spreading the love, though a bunch of friends on your couch counts, too. Tweet the details to @ArmitageTweetup and I will RT at your request.

If the North & South Tweetfest goes well, we hope to do tweet-a-longs for other Richard Armitage works, and then hopefully meet up with new friends at midnight showings all around the world in December.

Let's have some fun together while we wait for The Hobbit!

Special thanks to @lovemrthornton and @Sinjoor for keeping the spark of this alive. Mwah.