Being back in school is definitely an interesting experience. It's interesting to go from the soft science of Anthropology to art classes. It's definitely a change in mindset and is a bit of a sap on the free time meter. Between that, work (busy, but still good!) and trying to actually have a social life, I'm pretty well exhausted.
One of my favorite new experiences recently is the Cleveland International Film Festival. To celebrate their centennial, the Cleveland Foundation sponsored a whole day of free tickets at this fantastic local event. My friend, Cheryl, and I had originally planned on spending the whole day at the festival and had picked out eight movies that we wanted to see. Unfortunately, scheduling (yeah, making truffles until 1am puts a cramp on those early mornings) and illness (super-flu is apparently making the rounds) had other plans, so Cheryl was down for the count and I needed a couple extra hours of sleep this morning. So I ended up going to a couple films downtown and snapped some pictures of the city between viewings.
I saw both "Monk with a Camera" and "The Sax Man". And while "Monk with a Camera" was a great film, "The Sax Man" really took the cake for me. Perhaps it's because it was a more compelling subject for me personally, or because it was about a Cleveland icon, or both. Whatever it was, it was phenomenal. The Sax Man, whose real name is Maurice Reedus, Jr., is a Cleveland fixture, legend what-have-you. I have seen this man around Cleveland since I was a munchkin going to Indians games at Jacobs Field. He's just always there. Playing outside of different venues, walking down the street, seen on public transit. He's The Sax Man. Everyone in Cleveland knows of him and recognizes him, but no one really knew (or remembered?) who he was. Director Joe Siebert did a great job of telling his story, but also just letting him and his story shine.
If you get the chance to see The Sax Man, either at CIFF or elsewhere, do it. Seriously, please go see this film. (Point of interest: I am not a crier. Really, I'm not. And this film definitely saw a few tears shed. Some of sadness, some of joy. Just an incredibly poignant documentary.)
And not to gloss over it (as it was an excellent film on its own!), if you are interested in any of the following: Buddhism, photography, biographies, or stories about unexpected life path, check out this film!
Please pardon the typos, bad grammar and lack of editing in this post as I'm trying to get it finished before I nod off after my exciting day. See below for some pictures from my jaunt around town this afternoon.