Friday, March 23rd, 2012: The cherry blossoms are in early bloom. Spring is officially here though, so we can pretend like this weather isn’t freakish. Cocaine confirmed in Whitney’s death, surprise surprise. The Kony guy lost his mind, and it’s our fault. This story,

Also, The Hunger Games came out.

Now I steered clear of Twilight. I didn’t give Harry Potter a chance (Libby, I promise I will read them!). I was always hesitant toward The Girl With The Stuff Who Did All The Things, but I loved the American movie. Simply not a Lord of the Rings kind of gal. I think the last book series I got into was The Berenstain Bears.

I don’t know though, I just had a good feeling about this one. I guess once I heard the story line?  But more so, I think there just comes a time in everyone’s life where you have to fall prey to the seductive and rabid nature of the beast that is pop culture.

Of course it is important to resist as well, perhaps whenever possible (three vague words). But we’re only human. We have needs. I couldn’t, for example, resist N*SYNC. Or The American Girl Dolls (yes…). Nor The O.C.

And now this. The Hunger Games.

No, the writing isn’t spectacular. (“The saltiness reminds me of my tears,” pg. 105) But sometimes you’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised. (“My tongue probes the ragged flesh and I taste blood,” pg. 86 – I admire any use of the word probe in a terrestrial, non-sexual way). And as it usually is the case in cult lit, it’s not about the writing. It’s about the story, the plot, the characters…and the hype.

And now a movie! It’s so thrilling to have a movie come out with a very current cult following as a follower yourself. While it may seem sillier as an adult (am I an adult?) to get swept up in epitomical hype, I think that’s why it’s valuable. Since it is something mindful, creative, with substance, it feels safe. Harmless even. Certainly in comparison to jumping aboard a more superficial trend train, like non-prescription glasses. Or lip-liner. Besides, it’s less stressful to be in the loop; no FOMO.

I’m real serious too. Still haven’t finished the book, putting me at the most exciting point of the whole frenzy. I’m denying myself the viewing of trailers. Avoiding commercials. Turning the channel/page/my eyes everytime I see any movie promo. I don’t want to let it get in my head and pollute the authentic images conjured by the text, but I fear it’s too late. Regardless, I’m very excited to see how they translate the good not great descriptions Collins provides of the alternate universe she has created. Additionally, Jessica Lawrence has been on my radar ever since Winter’s Bone. That guy from The Kids Are All Right has been on my radar since The Kids Are All Right (what can I say, I’m a sucker for family dramas). And Woody Harrelson can do no wrong as far as I’m concerned.

Maybe it’s the strong young female lead in a coming of age role that got me. It’s a formula that usually works on us. Maybe it’s the darkness, the weirdness of the concept. Whatever it is that pulls you into the wild fandom, as long as you’re able to maintain control, and never let them beat you, there’s no reason you shouldn’t come out unscathed. Sometimes, it’s fun to conform.

-Cassiel Archdeacon