One Feisty Blog

Background pictures courtesy of Laila

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The Reason I Started This Blog (Part 2)

In the first installment of The Reason I Started This Blog, back on March 20, I alluded to the fact that the embarrassing IPEX bra commercial story wasn't the only one I could tell about my darling little brother, Ty. Here is another story, which I assure you is presented free of hyperbole and malice. Well, at least it's free of hyperbole.

Alternate Title: I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar (A True Story)

When I was going to college at Cascade, I lived in my parents' house just across the street from the soccer field. This made me more popular than I might have been otherwise, because my friends could come to visit our full-sized fridge, cushy carpet, and free washer & dryer. Or maybe it was just my charming personality.

Another draw was our TV & VCR (this was back in the olden days when only really rich people had DVD players)--no one in the dorms had the space and autonomy to have big groups of people over for movie nights, so I hosted more than my fair share. Most of these movie nights were girls only, and the only requirement for film selection was Must Contain Hot Guys. We didn't exactly have a smorgasbord of hot guys to drool over on campus, so we turned to Blockbuster. We called these movie nights Lust Fests because a) it was catchy, and catchy is fun, and b) it sounded naughty, and naughty is fun. We weren't actually lusting, because lust is a sin. It was all very innocent, I promise. Just a bunch of silly girls eating caramel corn and squealing and giggling over Brad Pitt, George Clooney, and Keanu Reeves. (For obvious reasons, we all pretend that we never liked Tom Cruise.)

Needless to say, my family was not invited to said Lust Fests. No one wants to attend a Lust Fest with their mother. That's just wrong. But Mom is the friendly type, and it sort of hurt her feelings to get kicked out of her own house so her daughter and her friends could have fun without her. I started feeling badly about this, so I decided that Mom and I should have our own Girls' Movie Night.

We rented Only You, a chick flick if there ever was one, and were just settling down to watch when Ty burst into the room. He must have gotten home early from gallivanting with the youth group and he thought he could join us in our Girls' Movie Night. We told him he'd probably hate the movie. He promised he wouldn't make fun of it. We told him it was Girls' Movie Night, so it was girls only. He said that wasn't fair, and he'd pretend to be one of the girls if we'd let him join us. So we did.

Everything was going fine till the end of the movie drew nigh. I don't recall the details, but the hero was thwarted, the heroine had lost hope, and Billy Zane figured into it somehow. I think there might have been a convertible and some miscommunication involved. Being a veteran of chick movies, I was confident that Marissa and Robert would end up living happily ever after. But Ty was not a veteran of chick movies. And Ty had taken his promise to be "one of the girls" a little too seriously. He got rather upset that the couple would never be together and burst out with some frustrated and vehement exclamation along the lines of, "No! They HAVE to end up together! He really loves her!"

Mom and I looked at Ty, then at each other, then at Ty again.

One of us said, "Calm down, it's just a movie."

Ty said, "I'm a woman and I can get emotional if I want to."

That, my friends, is a direct quote.

Popcorn, Anyone?: Top 8 Culturally Relevant Movies I Haven't Seen

I've seen a lot of movies. I'll wager that I've seen more black and white movies than all of my Dear Readers put together. (Ty doesn't get to play, since we were raised by the same movie-lovin' mother.) I bet I'm the only one in our blogmunity who has seen Treasure of the Sierra Madre and The Maltese Falcon. (Unless we have a closet Bogey fanatic in our midst.) I can practically recite Gone with the Wind and It's a Wonderful Life. I can count the big studio-era musicals I haven't seen on one hand: Carousel, On the Town, and 42nd Street. And yes, I've seen several movies made after my parents were born, too.

I pay attention to pop culture. Or rather, I have the freakish ability to absorb massive amounts of information re: pop culture whether I'm trying or not. Probably because I like to play Trivial Pursuit and my brain files possibly-useful information automatically. This means that I know the stars and basic plots of about a jillion movies that I've never seen. Which means I feel no driving need to see say, Deliverance, even though it's constantly referenced in pop culture. (I hear it's not a good choice for a youth group event, right Ty? Or perhaps Ryan should ask his brother-in-law, who chose it.) I didn't see The Godfather (I & II) till a few years ago, but the plot wasn't much of a surprise to me, since it has been referenced and parodied on practically every show I've ever watched.

Thanks to movie trailers and good ol' Bugs Bunny, The Simpsons, Anamaniacs, Family Guy, SNL, Seinfeld, and numerous other shows--especially those Top 100 clip shows I'm so fond of, I can quote plenty of lines from movies I've never watched. But even though I have a certain level of knowledge re: movies that I've never seen that are constantly referenced in popular culture, I still feel a little silly to admit that I've never seen these flicks:

1.) Jaws

2.) Rocky (and its sequels)

3.) The Breakfast Club

4.) Scarface

5.) Halloween/Nightmare on Elm Street/The Exorcist/The Shining/etc.

6.) Rambo (and its sequels)

7.) Pretty in Pink

8.) Terms of Endearment

I realize, Dear Readers, that many of these movies are before your time. But I'm an old lady (I was born while Nixon was still in office, most of you were probably Reagan-era babies). Most of my movie-loving peers have memorized these films. Not having seen Jaws in my peer group is akin to not having seen Titanic or The Matrix. At least I think that's a good analogy--I'm not completely sure what you whippersnappers are watching these days.

Er, This is a Teensy Bit Embarrassing

The other day I realized that I have 12 plain red t-shirts. That's not counting all the red polos, button-downs, long-sleeved t-shirts, sweaters, and message tees.

That's kind of ridiculous, right?

I really need to get rid of at least half of them. It shouldn't be so hard--I already have a giant bag full of give-away clothes (as I do every year at Seasonal Clothing Rotation Time). But...these are red. I love red. Red has been my favorite color for lo, these 20 years. I have no problem culling the starting-to-get-ratty shirts from other color families--I do it with startling regularity. But the red ones are my friends! Some of them are getting pretty darn disreputable, I think one of them is from my college days (and I graduated in 1997). But I don't want to part with them. What if I don't do laundry for a month and I run out of red t-shirt options?¡ I need to at least ditch the one with the scratchy tag and the one with the little holes in the hem. And the one with the grease stain. Then I would only have 9--that's more reasonable, right?

We won't even talk about how many pairs of shoes I have. Here's a hint though, at least 10 pairs are red.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Well, That's a Bummer

I just found out that an innovative new show that I really, really enjoyed wasn't picked up for ABC's fall schedule.

Steve, Ty, and I may have been the only ones watching Sons and Daughters on Tuesday nights, but we really enjoyed it. I think it was too different from all the other shows out there, and that's why it didn't get a fair chance. God forbid someone in Hollywood do something that's actually creative¡ (Sorry, I'm a teensy bit bitter at the moment.)

It was partially improvised by a ridiculously talented cast, and remarkably well-acted to boot. The extended family the show centered around was hilariously flawed and dysfunctional, but also remarkably realistic. It was kind of painful to watch because they all had so many insecurities and issues, and a few of the characters were downright horrible, manipulative, passive-agressive, spiteful people--it sometimes made me squirm, but it always made me laugh. It was a veritable goldmine of funny, touching stories. And ABC ditched it.

Stupid ABC. I hope you're cursing yourself in September when the dreck that you chose to replace Sons and Daughters bombs. (Karma will make sure it bombs. Just ask Earl).