Heath Ledger, R.I.P.


 "I guess that’s how death works. It doesn’t matter if we’re ready or not. It just happens."

Randy K. Milholland, Something Positive, 11-29-2006
Webcomic pioneer

 

Heath Ledger found dead in New York apartment

Updated Tue. Jan. 22 2008 10:59 PM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

The film industry is mourning the death of one of its brightest young talents. Heath Ledger, the Oscar-nominated star of the vanguard film "Brokeback Mountain," was found dead in his Manhattan apartment on Tuesday.

Police say sleeping pills were found next to him.

The 28-year-old actor was found by his housekeeper who had gone to Ledger’s bedroom to let him know his masseuse had arrived for an appointment, NYPD spokesman Paul Browne told The Associated Press. Reports indicate that Ledger was unconscious and the housekeeper and masseuse shook him and called for help when he did not respond. An autopsy is planned for Wednesday.

"We are all deeply saddened and shocked by this accident," Ledger’s publicist, Mara Buxbaum, said in a statement.

"This is an extremely difficult time for his loved ones and we are asking the media to please respect the family’s privacy and avoid speculation until the facts are known."

Ledger, who was born in Australia, began his movie career as a teenager working on independent films before moving to Los Angeles. He soon starred in the teen film "10 Things I Hate About You" and was offered other teen movie roles. But he turned them down, deciding instead to wait for more challenging projects.

He starred in a "Knight’s Tale" and in 2000 he starred alongside fellow Australian Mel Gibson in "The Patriot." He also had a prominent role in "Monster’s Ball" — starring Billy Bob Thornton and Halle Berry — in which his character commits suicide.

Ledger’s most memorable role was, perhaps, alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in "Brokeback Mountain," where he played a cowboy conflicted by his homosexuality. The role earned him critical acclaim and the admiration of gay rights activists.

On Tuesday, just hours after his death, The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, released a statement mourning his death.

"His powerful portrayal changed hearts and minds in immeasurable ways," it said.

Ledger had been romantically linked to actresses Heather Graham and Naomi Watts. On the set of "Brokeback," he met Michelle Williams — who played his wife in the film and became engaged to him in real life. The two have a daughter and lived together in Brooklyn, but they separated last year.

Ledger had just finished filming "The Dark Knight," the second part of "Batman Begins." In an interview earlier this month, director Christopher Nolan told reporters, "Heath has given an amazing performance in the role. It’s really extraordinary."

Home, Emotional whirlwind and putzing

"She runs the gamut of emotions from A to B."

 

Dorothy Parker, speaking of Katharine Hepburn
US author, humorist, poet, & wit (1893 – 1967)
09h53
Well, I’m back in the Dot now, cycling through a whirl of emotions. Happy one minute, anxious the next. Corky’s picking up on it too, and echoing it in his own fashion.
 
I start After-care tonight at the Brentcliffe. That’s going to be happening every Monday evening for the next while.
 
This morning, I’m still at a loss s to what to do with myself. There are so many things that need my attention. It’s overwhelming to say the least, and I’ve overloaded at this moment. This is exactly the sort of mentality that pushed me to the edge previously, so instead I’ve opted to cut myself some slack,and just putz around the apartment this morning, now that Drew’s gone off to work.
 
I’ll continue this later on. Just felt like mentioning how I was feeling is all.
 
16h08 
 
I’m now very tired.
 
I’ve managed to get myself a new entry card, so I can stop buzzing my neighbours to let myself in to the building. I’ve gone and got my prescriptions. I’ve had the drawer front fixed in my kitchen. I’ve sorted through all the clothing in the apartment, folding and discarding. There’s still laundry to do, but I’ve had it.
 
After-care ius going to have to wait. There’s only so much I’m capable of doing in one day, and I would have had more time if things had worked out I had walked in the apartment on Friday. But, oh well. These things happen.
 
I’m going for a nap now.Sleepy

Kidney stones, balance issues, delays

12h51, January 14 2008
 
"It’s no longer a question of staying healthy. It’s a question of finding a sickness you like."
        Jackie Mason
        US comedian (1934 – )
Mom and Coleen left early this morning, to drive into the City, to the Royal Victorian Hospital, so that Coleen could have some kidney stones blasted into smaller detritus, able to pass through, with far less damage they would cause if left untouched.

Still, it’s not a pleasant experience, from what I’ve been told, being bombarded with a concentrated blast of sound, and although there is no mark left after, one comes away feeling battered and bruised nonetheless.
17h57, January 15th 2008
 
Quincy went back to the vets today, for a follow-up on his balance problems. He’s been on pills for the last week, I think. So far, the prognosis is looking good, although the vet chastised my parents on Quincy being allowed to still jump on and off the sofa when he’s downstairs with us. It could slow down the healing of whatever’s been ailing his back. We just have to be more be more vigilant when it comes to watching him now. Over the years everyone’s fallen into a pattetrn
16h30, January 17th 2008
 
I am SOOOO tired.
 
Didn’t really sleep well last night, if at all. Not certain if it was because everything felt differently sleeping in my underwear or not, if I was hot, or what. All I know is that when I finally gave up on the idea rest, homicidal rage was quick to follow.
 
On top that, I was having lunch today with Nana, while Mom and Dad went on to Montreal General for an optomologist appointment. I’m just glad I was able to beat my mood back so that I could enjoy myself while I was there with her and her friends.
 
Oh yeah. I’m not leaving now until Sunday.

Mom’s concerned about Quincy, and despite her desire to see Doug now that he’s home and bored, it’s been decided that it would be easier just to meet up with Laura, Sunday at the half-way mark in Joyceville. There’s a Husky gas bar and restaurant, just off the exit there, the last on the eastern front that we enjoy eating at. After lunch Laura will take me back the rest of the way.

Weather or not to be me

Flooding damaged powerlines along a road near HuntingdonHighway 138 was closed on Tuesday because of flooding.Flooding of the Chateauguay River
January 8th, 2008
   
"Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change once in a while, nine out of ten people couldn’t start a conversation."
        Kin Hubbard
        (1868 – 1930)
 
Nature can be a fickle and tempermental bitch.
 
We’ve gone from one extreme here in QC, setting a new record for monthly snowfal in December, and now we’re sitting at almost 50 degrees fahrenheit, with fog as thick as pea soup blanketing the entire St. Lawrence Valley from all the moisture gathering in the air from the rapid melt.
 
One of the areas that is of interest to me is the Town of Huntingdon, where I spent a number of good years with a friend I had made during my time in Scouting, Jeremy Roy, and his family, along with Scott Thompson and Charles Murdoch. I wake up often wondering how they are. It’s been so long.
 
Local and provincial agencies have been called in, to break the ice as it rises, and hopefully prevent it from taking it out several bridges that are currently in danger of being swept away.
 
 
One school bus, on it’s way to school with full load of elementary level students, was unable to to follow the road under the water, and drifted into a ditch. All the students were rescued, after city workers arrived and using the buckets on their utility vehicles, were able to get all the children, and the driver, to safety. Chances were it offered them one of the more interesting excuses to be used for being late to class.
 
Sunday, January 13th 2008
 
So now begins the final week here. We should be heading back down the 401 on the upcoming Friday for the Dot.
 
I’ve bought myself new clothes, a new 20 inch LG wide screen LCD monitor for my computer, games for my Nintendo Wii, a gift from my parents at Christmas.
 
I’ll be resuming my After-care at the Brentcliffe, starting Monday the 21st. All in all, I’ve done well for myself. Now I have to make certain that I show that I’ve earned it. 
 

Meatballs

January 6th, 2008
 
REMEMBRUARY , n.: "the thirteenth month of the year that begins on New Year’s Day and ends when a person stops absentmindedly writing the old year on their cheques." See also: Checkuary. (unwords.com)
 
11h33
 
Mom and Dad have decided that Quincy is defintely going to the local veteranarian tomorrow, to find the source of his rear leg problems. I’ve noted some tremors when I pick him up as well.

Quincy’s been banned from wandering the house, unless he’s got someone with him jic.

 

Made meatballs this morning with Coleen, just to pass some idle time away.
 
Meatballs:
 
3 lbs.  hamburger
1/2 c. oatmeal
3  eggs
1 tps. garlic powder
2 tbs Italian seasoning
3  small onions, finely chopped
1/2 c. BBQ sauce
1 tsp. pepper
2 tbs. Worcestshire sauce
+ anything else you find interesting (choose your own adventure)
 
Drop meatballs into pot of boiling water. Wait until they float to surface. Freeze until needed

Back home, Body work, Ignorance, Falling down

15h05, January 5th, 2008
 
Noreen was able to go home to le Vivalis yesterday afternoon. Mom called us, very much relieved, to let us know. She’s still concerned a bit though. Apparently Noreen was slurring her words slightly while Mom was preparing to leave to drive home last night. Personally, I just think Noreen was exhausted. Staying at a hospital, even for a night, can take a lot out of a senior.
 
Dad returned the borrowed car he had loaned while the van was in the garage being repaired, courtesy of a hit and run while it was parked in front of Familiprix on Boxing Day. I think it’s a real shame when people pull such a treacherous stunt. Now, it wasn’t much. Just a broken tail light and some body work, but from the height of impact, it had to be one of those gas guzzling over-sized SUVS people seem to enjoy driving around, with so little regard for those around them. I wish the government would take a stand and ban those monstrousities from the road.
Uncle Doug is home now too. Mom called Markham for an update and surprise, Doug himself answered. He’d had an angiogram performed on him. I’ll look that up on Google to see what exactly it is.
 
Let me see… what else? I reformatted and installed a newer version of Windows XP on Mom’s computer, this time with Service Pack 2, which makes the OS much more secure, according to Microsoft. My only regret is that it wasn’t the same version of XP that Drew installed on the refurbished computer I brought down to replace Coleen’s. Now Mom (and myself) has to deal with with the inticacies of Internet Explorer 7. It’s going to be the tab feature more than anything else that’s going to confuse her.
 
19h51
 
My mother’s refusal to even try to understand that there is a second language, a predominant language in QC, other than English, is infuriating at times.

How can someone live in Quebec all her life, and not understand that learning both languages is a necessity if you want to truly feel like you belong?

 

22h02
 
Quincy has been falling a lot lately. Mom thinks he might have had a small stroke, since it can’t be all related to his going blind now in his second eye.
 
Socrates has been blind almost all his life, and he doesn’t have this much difficulty
 

Snow, blowers, new record, Lakeshore General, New O/S

16h55, January 2nd, 2008
 
Still not feeling a lot of love Broken heart for snow right now.
 
Sore arms from all the shoveling: 1, Love: 0. BAH! Tongue out
 
This is not the most convenient time for the old snowblower, which incidentally is the same age as I am (28) to break down. Still, these things happen. I’m more impressed with the longevity that stuff we like to refer to as from being "way back when" lasts, in comparison to the crap put out today.

Thank you America, for introducing the short term commodity. QuANTITY B4 QUALITY.

 

23h22
 
Oh yeah. Guess it should be noted that today the world had another record set when a barrel of oil reached the $100 mark, even if it was only for a short while before dropping to $99. Still, ecomonists are figuring it’s going to go as high as $120 before things get better.
 
Now personally, I don’t find anything wrong with this. Sure, it was $15 a barrel prior to the United States invaded Iraq, and has only grown higher thanks to a global demand that remains unquenched, with China set to take over as the chief demander by 2010, and OPEC predicting that it might not be able to keep up, whgich of course plays into the market.

Maybe now folks will realize that it’s time to give up on this nasty business and turn to more clean energy methods. We’ve only been given a taste really of all the green machines out there. Now is the time those industries pick it up a notch and really show the world a better way.

20h23, January 3rd
 
Deep cold all day today, but now those rascally weather-type people are saying that it could do a complete reversal this weekend, with temperatures climbing to perhaps the double digits on the plus side.
 
Mom’s been at the Lakeshore General all afternoon, and just walked in now. Noreen again. Blood pressure dropped and something about oxygen saturation.
09h50, January 4th, 2008
 
So at some last night while Mom and I were watching TV, I got my update on Noreen. Still not certain as to why she needed two (2) pints of fresh blood if she wasn’t bleeding, but I’m sure it’s necessary. She stayed overnight, and Mom’s going back in today. She’s hoping that she can get Noreen checked out and back to Le Vivalis.
 
In the meanwhile, I’ll finish with the reinstallation of all the software on Mom’s computer.  She finally decided to take me up on the offer to put in a new XP operating system after she couldn’t install the latest Adobe Reader update, for lack of a missing  .msi (don’t ask. I’ll just look it up on Wikipedia and leave it up to you readers to decide).