Monday, July 6, 2015

Celebrating freedom/ my blog's 5th birthday!

Despite the flood waters that literally tried to rain on Nashville's parade, July 4th is always exciting to me.  I'd like to pretend that all the fireworks and grilling and stars and stripes string bikinis are all for me because- July 4th is not only America's birthday- it's my BLOGAVERSARY!  I have had this blog for exactly 5 sometimes glorious and sometimes terrible years.

The popularity and time I put into this blog ebbs and flows, but it is one of the things I am most proud of in my life. Writing pretty much saved me during a very uncreative rut in my life. These five years have been some of the best and worst in my life and this blog has seen me through 2 deaths in my immediate family (my father and my brother), the addition of a niece and a nephew, the loss of a job I didn't love and the start of one that is a perfect fit, a year of being a sad hopeless unemployed gypsy, a brush with death and month long hospital stay, the removal of an organ, the meeting of the love of my life, and many many concerts, movies and dips into the weird rabbit hole of my thought processes. The subject matter was sometimes light and trivial and other times I apologize for the heaviness, which came out of nowhere like a rogue mack truck. There are many times I didn't wanna write, but I did and that connection was my therapy.

Thanks to those that have read this corner of the net or supported me or proofread it and  pointed out to me my typos and lack of commas. [Tangent: SERIOUSLY! I love you guys! I'm not even being facetious.]

Thanks to that random acquaintance I ran into a few months before I started this blog who looked disappointed when I told them I worked in insurance and said very boldly "Why? I thought you would be writing by now." [Tangent: Yes, it was kind of a dickish comment, but clearly I needed that.]

Thanks to that weird summer cold in 2010 and that bottle of Wal-tussin I chugged to fend it off, which gave me the blind courage to think I could start a website that people would want to read.

Trust that I don't live under grand illusions that this blog is a super huge deal to anyone else, but it has meant a lot to me. I am most thankful for the friendships that have sprouted with perfect strangers, locally and all over the country,  because of it and the opportunities I have gotten in the last 5 years! Without That Girl in the Wheelchair, there's no way I would have gained the trial and error style social media savvy to hold that as my paid job title today. It also have me the balls to be a published contributor on Hello Giggles ! I guess the lovely people who make generic Robitussin deserve a thank you note.

Oh yeah, and this isn't some sort of goodbye post, you all are stuck with me for at least another year!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Magic Mike XXL: the perfect date movie?

Sorry for the jarring penis gummy header; it just seemed too perfect not to create.

OK. So, the answer to this question is probably not...because well, thrusting oiled men don't scream unisex, but when the opportunity to see Magic Mike XXL on opening night with two of my lady friends and their respective beaus presented itself, I couldn't resist the social experiment. [Tangent: OK, hey pot- the name is kettle, I'm black. I realize that I have often written here how insane it is that women drag their hubbys or boyfriends or baby daddies to go see movies they have zero interest in. In fact, I have rolled my eyes at those women and thought, "dang! Get some friends or wait till it comes to Redbox." I mean if Jamie wants to see The Expendables, he'll have to do that on his own time. Couples don't have to do  EVERYTHING together, am I right?  Now I am that woman, although it didn't exactly play out so simply. It was going to be all girls but then slowly the men got interested in what sounded to them like a ridiculous evening.] I went and saw the first one with my friend Courtney, my partner in embarrassing movie choices, the week it opened and was overcome with how completely over the top ridiculous it was, but I wished they had just run with that aspect and given the ladies more opulent crotch-thrusting and less tortured story line. [Tangent: No. I don't find it sexy. I find male stripping, as I do lady stripping,  real weird and uncomfortable, but I LOVE to see anyone acting a fool in a public space...and we all know these screenings are hot beds of estrogen fueled ballyhoo.]  After seeing it, I remember recommending it to my friend Rae on a purely ridiculous level. We later discussed it and loved/were baffled by the same parts, so we decided as soon as we heard about the second one that we would see it together opening night. This time I was prepared to get in the "woo" spirit with the rest of the girls-night-outters. Then my friend Bethany joined in and slowly the boys got on board. It soon turned into a triple date night. 

Nathan, Jamie and Travis pose!
Travis waiting with anticipation and saving seats.
 I'm not sure the boys knew quite what to expect, and I'm sure they felt mildly uncomfortable at times. As we filed into the theater, it was clear that it was all women (and a smattering of same sex inclined fellas), who were ready for some Channing Tatum. They were like starved wolves. There were cheers when the screen went black and the studio logo flashed by. [Tangent: Who knew Warner Brothers pictures was so exciting!??!] The first image on the screen was Mr. Magic Mike fully clothed- shot just from the shoulders up doing absolutely nothing and the amount of Woo was deafening. [Tangent: I then felt bad for the schlumpy Hispanic gent who came on screen next, so I wooped for him. I was alone, but he deserved a woo.] I won't give too many spoilers as I am sure it is the dynamic plotlines that everyone is interested in, but it was  if this movie took my advice. There was more dancing, more pandering to women [Tangent: i.e. references to Twilight, Backstreet Boys and the assertion that women are queens to be worshipped and God is female.], less drama, no real plot, dialogue that seemed improvised and throw in a road trip for good measure. So I would say it hit the nail on the head [Tangent: Pun intended? No not really. But it stays.]. This movie knew what it was...I only wish McCaughnahey had returned. [Tangent: I was okay with it because Donald Glover was inexplicably thrown in the mix!]

After the movie, I asked Jamie if he liked it, and he said, "I wouldn't say I loved the movie, but I liked the experience." [Tangent: I mean pre-game margaritas, audience participation and smuggled in penis gummies make evertyhing better.]  To him, it was like seeing The Room or Rocky Horror Picture Show, only at those movies, a lone theater goer usually doesn't yell out "Take your shirt off already!!!"  midway through. Oh, and when asked they all picked Joe Mangianello as their favorite. In case you were wondering.

Oh, and my ginger wasn't the only red-head crashing a showing- watch this video from Team Coco of my other love, Conan O'Brien going on a GNO [Tangent: That's a "Girl's Night Out" so I learned on the news the other day.]

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

I took some steps (at least according to apple)

So I have been gone for a while, with good reason- I have been off at camp for the week getting happily sunbaked and exhausted [Tangent: That will get get a whole picture-laden post when I get all my proverbial ducks in a row (and far from looking what those unrowed suckers look like now...a "clusterduck" if you will.)] and while I was away, guess what - I took my first steps in years!

 Oh, haha. Psych. I didn't really walk, silly geese of the internet. Don't you think "that girl in the wheelchair" suddenly taking steps for the first time in 20 years would warrant a tweet, a Facebook post or some kind of vermin raining from the skies [Tangent: Is that a thing in the Bible? I am the most cursory of I couldn't tell ya.]. One night, while trying to fall asleep out in the boonies with spotty to zero internet access [Tangent: Seriously, this scenario will make anyone realize how reliant they are on late night Facebook scanning.] I searched the every GB of information and software on my iPhone.  After clicking on the never investigated little red and white heart icon added with a recent update, I found something completely crazy. Somehow, I had fooled my iPhone's little pedometer into thinking I was taking steps.'s not an impressive amount. I'm no Vanessa Carlton. [Tangent: Sorry that was the lamest reference ever. Please excuse it.] I am a hell of a long way from posting my daily fitbit readings on Instagram to hoards of people that don't give a damn, but checking my "steps" is my new obsession.  I'm no tech expert so I am not completely clear on how these dohickies work [Tangent: I can only deduce that my crap tires on my wheelchair make me jolt and bounce around a lot, which simulates a step.], but I love that I have outsmarted the ghost of Steve Jobs and answered "Yes" to the eternal question "Can someone in a wheelchair use a pedometer without actually walking?" Lazy people of the world who wish to seem athletic, take this new information and run with it as you wish [Tangent: Pun not intended.]

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


* I bet you think this is gonna be yammering on about something you don't care pedicures...which it kind of is...but it is mostly about me being an ass. Fret not.

Not unlike most girls, I don’t love to go around with my piggies looking like troll feet, but sometimes due to circumstances beyond my control-  it just seems to happen that way.  I love to the process of picking out a color and I take great pride and find it intensely therapeutic to paint my nails.  I get a gold star for staying within the confines of a nail, but damned if fate and bodily inflexibility has made it hard for me to reach my toes.  Cruel joke, nature- girls in wheelchairs deserve pretty feet, too! [Tangent: Oh no, with that sentence, I have really opened up the floodgates for mass blog interest from the niche wheelchair/foot fetish community. Oh well. Frankly, it wouldn’t be the first time.]

With this limitation, I’m left with two alternatives: 1. Awkwardly ask someone I know to address the situation or 2. Go to a professional. As I’ve gotten older, and the chore’s magic has worn off a bit with my nearest and dearest, I have just started to get pedicures, which would be all find and dandy if they weren’t a horrifying experience for me.

Yes, you read that correctly. I don’t love going to do something that is inherently pampering. In fact, it’s sometimes as anxiety-inducing as a pap smear. I’m roughly 4’10 and lack the stability of an oak tree and those giant massage chairs seem to swallow me alive. It always takes several towels propped around me to keep me grounded and I usually have to forgo the massage capabilities altogether. [Tangent: Due to my stature, the shiatsu neck feature just seems to sucker punch me in the back of my head repeatedly. Whereas the back massage is much too forceful for my frame and moves my entire body. If you even dare to activate the butt massager,  it looks like I am riding on a bull in some bar where mechanical bull riding is an acceptable entertainment form. It makes it difficult for me to even keep my feet stationary for them to be de-trollified!]  This is all while the horrified, yet well meaning nail tech, stares at me as if I am a robot that is short-circuiting. In their broken English, I generally hear the phrase, “You okay?” once every two minutes.  It’s a hot mess.

For this reason, I have to take someone who I trust will get me safely into the chair and be on Kimmie-watch during their own session. You know…in case I crumple over to one side or slide down in the chair or to placate the pedicurist and reassure them that they are not hurting me and not breaking me, even though I am doing that on my own. Seriously, guys, I am the worst. Why do you hang out with me? The last couple times, I have gone with my friend and get-me-out-of-bed-five-days-a-week attendant, Kate. She thought maybe we should try a children’s chair, because let’s face it- I am built more like an outhouse than a brickhouse. Although I knew this was a winning solution, I was fully prepared to look insane.

When I asked to sit in it, I could tell the sweet workers were confused, but I told them it would just work better, and it did!! Sitting in a chair that was bubblegum pink and in the shape of a non-trademarked Hello Kitty, [Tangent: Bobo Kitty.] I felt secure. [Tangent: It basically looks just like the fake Hello Kitty from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.] 

Perhaps it didn’t help the situation of not feeling like a complete freak when I asked the sweet staff there to take a photo of me sitting in it. I seriously would not have faulted them if they offered me a juice box and a pat on the head at this point.  It’s like I was asking for it.

At least now, I have a back up plan for getting a peaceful pedicure. Perhaps your idea of a winning pedicure looks luxe and tranquil,  but mine is pink and smiling and in itty bitty kitty sized. To each his own. I mean despite my lack of makeup, look how stoked I look!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

A day at Myrtle Beach (aka Shag 2)

 When I was growing up in the 80s, I had premium cable and my family had a Blockbuster membership, so needless to say- I saw the movie Shag so many times that it is forever imprinted on my memory [Tangent: If you have never seen this movie, you can probably go buy my worn out VHS copy of it at McKays. It's a purged item that I still regret letting go of. If you aren't up for that needle in a haystack adventure, you can watch the movie on Youtube in 3 part installments and with Spanish subtitles by clicking here. It's a Phoebe Cates/Bridget Fonda teen road trip movie that is all about 4 friends and their rad time in Myrtle Beach, SC in the early 60s. It's all shag dancing and Elvis lookalikes and beehives and rebel flag bikinis. It's fantastic.] Although, my family always spent our summers growing up just an hour north of there, I never really spent any quality time in Mytrle Beach, but since Jamie knew it well from his childhood vacations, we knew a day trip was in order.

Because 99% of what I know of Myrtle Beach is based on Shag, I highly expected there to be boardwalk dance contests and impromtu beachside beauty pageants [...and a sidekick they refer to as Pudge for some inexplicable reason even though she is a size 6.] Well, unfortunately there was none of that, but there was a heaping helping of people in casual wear emblazoned with pot leaves and loads of souvenir stores where you could get a koozie or a keychain with your name on it [Tangent: Unless your name is Kimmie...then you have to pick a "Kim"]. It was very touristy and there was a lot to cram into one day. I only wish we had more time to spend there because Myrtle Beach is the ultimate Mecca of over-the-top mini golf! [Tangent: It also had some weird animal safari that I was super interested in because they advertised a chimp and a baby tiger who were friends! Who doesn't love unlikely animal friendships?! However they had crazy stipulations like: No skirts. No cameras. No white. No children under 8. No necklaces. etc. Oh, and it was $300. No thank you.] Maybe next year.

Here is some of what we did end up doing and seeing in our afternoon visit to Broadway at the Beach and the Boardwalk. Broadway at the Beach was like one big outdoor mall with Planet Hollywoods and attractions and carnival style rides and elaborate mini-golf [Tangent: With a dragon that shot fire out of it's mouth! They don't mess around in MB!] It was really hot, so we stayed there for a while, but didn't have money to shop or time to take a duck boat ride, so we just people watched and fed fish....oh, and posed with random things. That middle picture is Jamie posing with Bill Cosby's hand prints in the weird walk of fame in front of the Hard Rock Cafe.

Since Jamie was the Myrtle Beach expert, having spent many a summer there, he made all the plans. The only things on his nostalgic must-see list were a tacky 3 story gift shop called the Gay Dolphin and an Italian ice stand [Tangent:...that also had 120 flavors of soft serve ice cream, which is my idea of heaven!]. Both of these things were on the Boardwalk.

When we go back, I definitely want to ride the skywheel, the giant ferris wheel that overlooks the beach, and maybe get an airbrushed T-shirt emblazoned with a Looney Toons character of some sort (When in Rome!). Oh, and by that time Magic Mike XXL will have given me a new terrible movie localized in Myrtle Beach to obsess over.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

have a summah at Holden Beach

It's really not a big secret that I listen to a lot of podcasts and one that I never miss is Who Charted?, a weekly top 5 podcast hosted by Kulap Vilaysock and Howard Kremer. Co-host Howard has a very important mission that he believes strongly in, he fights for the taking back of summer. He calls this movement "Have a Summah." Basically, it is his belief that as we age, we lose the specialness of "summah" and it is very important to hold it sacred and remember the enthusiasm for summer break that you had when you were younger. In order to properly "Have a summah, " he has a lot of edicts inluding:
Don't spend this summah in last year's summah suit!
Lose your swimginity.
Don't wear government pants.

Well, a couple weeks ago I took all these to heart and hit the Carolina beaches with my family and Jamie. It has been probably 15 years since I have been to the beach during the actual summah [Tangent: the last few trips have been in the fall and that time I got 2nd degree sun poisoning in Caifornia- it was in the spring so this is my first actual summer beach vacation in many moons.], so I thought this should really start the trend of having a summah. 

I have written about my adventures at Holden Beach here , here, and  here but couldn't love it more. It's small and not touristy and there aren't really any attractions, but I am 100% on board for that. It was an awesome way to start summah off right, and lose my swimginity without governnment pants. Oh and i got to spend it with my niece and nephew (who were also living by these mantras). [Tangent: I bought my 3 year old niece and I several matching outfits, because it is my dream to have an Island of Dr. Moreau style relationship where I dress a tiny person up as myself. However, coordinating dressing schedules is increasingly difficult to execute with a small child. Lesson learned. Hopefully,  I will indefinitely be able to wear a child's XL and unashamed to shop in a children's department.] Here are some pics of some of our adventures. [Tangent:  If you don't care, that's completely understandable. I have some major insecurity with destination posts. Although I love reading them, I feel like its the equivalent of your aunt showing you a slideshow of her trip to Branson. You don't know these people or places so why should you care? ]

I bought these mermaids for roughly $4 and the way my niece obsessed over them, one would think they held diamonds.

future album cover.

I took this picture while Jamie was on the final stretch of our beach stroll. Even in a "beach wheelchair", its like pushing through oatmeal.
I call this picture weekend at Jamie's because he looks deceased.

my favorite picture.

the only glimpse of my new summah suit

obviously she is made for instagram. My niece has it more together at 3 that I do now.

I love these tacky shirts, but this one especially because what is this outfit about. Belly button up- Katy Perry circa 2010, belly button down- Britney Spears circa 1999.
baby Ollie's first swim
losing his annual a DONUT no less.

Ellie beach flair.

Ollie beach flair.

I'm so stoked for the rest of the summah! I just hope it didn't peak too early! 
What are ya'll doing this summer (Government pants optional)?

Monday, June 8, 2015

dopplegangers 2015

Maybe it is the fact that I spent 100% of my downtime at my prior job being completely unproductive surfing, but I have always been hugely invested in finding famous dopplegangers for other people and being unsatisfied when I couldn't find a quality doppelganger for myself. [Tangent: I guess it's kind of like a successful coach who is terribly overweight and unathletic. "Those who can't do- teach." right? that a good analogy?] In the last couple years, the only people I get told I look like are the work of animators. [Tangent: This is not a completely new phenomenae. I wrote about my likenesses to Daria and a FB sidebar ad once before in this post, ]

The one on the left is from the trailor for Inside Out...the one on the right is from Despicable Me. Neither of them have I seen...but both are toons people have excitedly told me they were modeled after my likeness. I guess brown hair + glasses + childlike enthusiasm = Kimmie. I guess some girls would be pissed to be told they look like a computer-generated pre-teen instead of a SI swimsuit model, but I am just happy they are both female! This isn't always the case.

 I also like to chop all my hair off at random intervals into styles that I love, but that I later find also fancied by Top 40 frontmen from my high school years. [Tangent: Many years ago, my sister informed me that my former hairstyle, which I thought was giving off Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail vibes was actually more Johnny Rzenik Goo Goo Dolls vibes...oopsie. You can read about other times I was trying to look super chic, but didn't look like a chick at all here.] Then last week, I had an epiphany while listening to 90's on 9 on my vacation. While ardently car-singing along to "Push," I realized that if I do absolutely nothing stylewise with my current do, I kind of look like Rob Thomas in the heydey of Matchbox 20. Dang. Foiled again. That's what hair wax is made to prevent. This isn't something I am terribly proud of, but tell me if I am wrong.

 Although I am in love with my hair, I was starting to conclude that it the style I think is so easy and cute maybe isn't a cutting edge female style....that is until I was watching The Chew or The View or one of those shows and spied a little adorable nymph of a human who had adorable hair (and lady parts) in a Yoplait yogurt commercial. 

OK, I realize aside from hair, this girl and I have nada in common. She is possibly Asian and definitely French...and furthermore, she LOVES Yogurt...which I do not [Tangent: You all know it's turned milk, right?]. Evenso, it was kind of like that moment in Free Willy when Willy has been in captivity, but is finally able to swim with other orcas that are like him for the first time. [Tangent: Clearly the theme of the day is far-fetched analogies.]

Anyway, I guess the point that I  am taking the scenic way around is : Who do you look like? 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

One Man's Junk 3: We Finally Meet Dale

he had me at bobo Crypt Keeper!
 In the last 3 years, my family has 3 trips to coastal North Carolina with our respective mates, and each time my ginger and I break away to investigate a roadside attraction in Varnamtown. [Tangent: You may remember it from this post (which is in my top 10 most popular) or maybe this follow-up  filled with insane photo ops like me propped up on a Kotex car or Jamie looking tough sitting on a commode.]  After passing the seemingly endless string of gas stations, beach shops and trailers, we always happen upon a colorful nirvana of old toilets and cars festooned into colorful arrangements only to find out that it is closed. The whole junk yard is emblazoned with anti drug sentiments and is being heavily policed by the most terrifying guards imaginable - a live rooster and chicken. Because we are like moths to the flame of the weird and tacky,  we have always trespassed onto the open (aka not locked up) part of the property (a junk shop called  Fort Apache) to take pictures and bask in the wonder of gussied up trash.

We knew the third time was the charmed one to break into that bastion of junk and see what was so damned exciting behind that back gate that farm animals were trusted to monitor it. We were pretty stoked when a kindly man with little pigtails in his beard introduced himself as Dale and wanted to know all about how these city mice had found themselves in his backyard. I gained his love once I told him that we had been long time fans of his [Tangent: I left out the part that I recently re-recorded his episode of American Pickers because I didn't want to come off stalkery.] my Daddy was a North Carolinian and I been spending summers at Holden Beach since I was knee-high to junebug. [Tangent: Okay. We all know that I am not Blanche Devereaux and  that I didn't phrase it as such, but that country-fried vernacular just seemed apropo.]

Although he had swapped out the front yard accessories since our last visit and added a to scale RV homage to Breaking Bad [Tangent: Be still my heart! I was so excited that I couldn't take any pictures], I was most interested in what was locked inside. And let me tell you guys, it was batshit and amazing! We meandered through an endless literal tunnel of random things (a table of humidifiers here, a wall of cassette tapes there.) with weird and semi-terrifying mannequins and dummies smattered throughout just to keep it spicy. [Tangent: Jamie stopped to take a picture of that nude cement lady corpse (roll that sentence over in your head a time or two) when he heard a creepy exhalation from about a foot behind him. He turned around to see a huge live turkey lurking behind a fake grave. Ya know....just your average Tuesday at Dale's!]

After signing the guestbook, Dale told us to go see the "Town", which is the gated area behind his property.  [Tangent: Because aside from a couple family members of Dale's and because I watch almost exclusively crime dramas, there was a split second where I thought "yep! We are getting murderred today." Despite Dale being the sweetest Teddy Bear of man, I couldn't help but cycle through the normal "Did I tell my family where we were going when we left the beach house?" or " would be so easy for him to padlock us back here and make us into mannequins." Luckily I missed the day stranger danger was taught in elementary school because we just waltzed through the gate to check out his folk art oddity showcase.]  Seriously, to show you everything I would have to post a million pictures but here are some of the highlights: 

You'll notice I chose the worst possible day to leave my shoes in the car.
a mural he did on the side of building after the guys from American Pickers came to visit
this out building was kind of like a shrine filled with creepy old Cracker Barrel-esque portraits, old nativity scenes and religious icons and silk flowers. This was the room that may give me nightmares.
When we were about to head out and snapping the last photo of the Pickers mural, Dale game out to wish us off bearing gifts!!! After telling us that we were now family [Tangent: Yes. This was our Fast and the Furious moment.] he left us with parting gifts- a burned copy of a movie shot partially at his junk shop and an autographed copy of his story from a local magazine. Long story short, we finally reached our goal of breaking into Fort Apache...and I got a new brother out of the deal. He is seriously the nicest human on the planet (not a murderer)!
Sorry I look rough, vacation means no makeup and its roughly 700 degrees outside.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Netflix Documentary Hits and Misses: Vol 10 (May 2015 Edition)

If you are reading this, I am currently enjoying some much needed vacation time at the beach in North Carolina...livin that Dawson's Creek dream. However, I didn't forsake you on the Netflix front this month. Due to important priority viewing like binging on Scandal [Tangent: I swore after the ghost sex debacle a couple seasons in on Grey's Anatomy, that I wouldn't go down that road to ShondaLand productions again...but here we are starting Scandal, and I'm lovin' it.] and rewatching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt [Tangent: I know it's only been a couple months since I fell in love with Tituss and company the first time, but I felt the need to watch again.] I haven't had much time to be a functioning human and stay up on my Netflix documentaries. Don't worry though, I have a few hits and misses to report. 

 Oh, and before I forget, I really went out on a limb and wrote about my Netflix obsession for Hello Giggles. Because they are a positive domain, I decided to just reiterate my favorite feel good documentaries [Tangent: Although I could have very well pitched my favorite effed up docs! Hello, Tabloid...I'm looking at you!]. If you haven't checked the article yet and that sounds like your kind of thing, you can read it here.  OK, enough shameless self cross-promotion, on to the May docs...

Fed Up- A
 Ugh. Don't get me wrong- this movie is really well made and informative, but it may make it harder for you to enjoy junk food. Usually I am leery of docs like this for the mere fact that they suck the fun out of things. However, even still weeks after the viewing,  I have become the kind of person I loathe most- one that spews statistics from a documentary all the time as a fear tactic. [Tangent: God bless Jamie who had to listen to me blather on about the way the body digests coke for 10 minutes at dinner the other night. I could just see it in his eyes that he was kind of zoning out during my talk of government sugar conspiracies; I don't blame him. Gotta keep that in check....but I know he loves me so has to put up with it somewhat. ] That being said, it's absolutely a game changer, and unfortunately has made me start thinking before I shove Little Debbie's in my mouth [Tangent: More or Less.]. The other day I called my sister to vent about how much sugar a Starbucks frappecino has and I seriously didn't recognize the words coming out of my mouth, and I'm positive my sister thought I was punking her. I guess that means I am evolving and growing up...blergh.

Supermensch: The Legend of Schep Gordon- A
Watching this movie is like eating a meal with a wacky relative who is well- connected and has endless fantastic stories. I started it with my doubts based on the synopsis, but I was roped in within minutes.  Gordon is probably the most loveable and successful talent manager ever, and he happened upon it almost by accident... just because Jimmy Hendrix told him that's what Jewish people in LA do. [Tangent: I was so riveted by his stategies and tactics along the way. He would call cops on his acts to get press, and went way out on a weird-ass limb a number of times.] He is a mastermind.  If you are at all interested in the behind the scenes goings on in the music industry, then add this to your queue now. Do not pass go. 

Mansome- B+
This documentary has a lot of key things going for it- 1. Produced by Morgan Spurlock. 2. Topics in the film are bookended by conversations between Jason Bateman and Will Arnett as they get spa treatments. 3. It's about manscaping, facial hair and the rise of the metrosexual. This was my second time viewing it, and it is definitely a good time, but I felt there needed to be more diversity of topics and less Jack Passion. [Tangent: I know I know...this seems like a bizarre deep-cut reason to fault a movie, but I used to watch Passion on the IFC series Whisker Wars, and he always rubbed me the wrong way. He proves that cocky people can exist in all sports, even bearding.]

Magical Universe- A+
Immediately upon reading the description, I couldn't hit the play button fast enough. "A documentarian strikes up a friendship with reclusive artist Al Carbee, whose Barbie-doll photography gains acclaim and interest over the course of this project's 10-year history." SOLD. As you all know, old kooks is a favorite sub-genre of mine. I hesitate to say too much, because I want you to be as flabbergasted as I was upon watching it. You will basically go from thinking the filmmaker is for sure gonna be chopped up into tiny pieces by Carbee to feeling that Carbee is an unappreciated kind-hearted genius. You may cry by the end, but throughout you will laugh in moments of "WTF is happening!?!?" One of my favorite moments is when Carbee is detailing the inner motivation of all the Barbies in one of his Barbie party vignettes. Go watch this NOW! 

Jedi Junkies- B
It's it ironic or poetic that fandoms are an obsession of mine?  Although I have probably only seen the original Star Wars trilogy maybe once,  but I happen to know a lot of die-hard fans,  so this was not shocking or suprising film, but it was fun. The filmmakers got a lot of their footage from interviews at conventions, but they also profiled people who dedicated their lives to the franchise in some capacity. Some folks devoted their time to tattooing [Tatoin?] their body with the imagery from the movies or devoting their lives to collecting merch or fashioning working light sabers.

Beyond Clueless- D
Have you ever been so so excited about watching something because it 100% fits your specifications, but then you watch it and find it doesn't even come near your expectations? In fact, the whole time you are bored thinking of ways it could be better. Beyond Clueless is that movie. The doc is about teen movies and the common tropes that bind them: fitting in, pack mentality, budding sexuality, transformation etc. It's also narrated by Fairuza Balk of The Craft, which should make it a homerun, but it doesn't. Although it featured some deep cut movie clips and made me surprised "dark teen comedies" isn't my top trending categroy on Netflix, it definitely left a lot to be desired. I would have loved to hear different people interviewed or maybe just some formatting change. Balk's voice, whose monotone quality made me nod off. overlayed on top of clip packages can only be enjoyable for so long. No one is more dissapointed than I am about this than me. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


Earlier today I was talking to my mom as I was scrolling through Twitter and reading her some of the #ThanksDave posts on Twitter in honor of the last episode tonight of The Late Show with David Letterman.

 I read her my tweet about being 10 and the fact that my parents told me that I could stay up past my bedtime because it was Letterman's last show before jumping networks and landing in his current CBS time slot. Probably to appease their own insecurities about their bold parenting decision, they reiterated that this show had historical value many times. [Tangent: Although she didn't remember it, my mom now finds it funny and a bit skewed the things my folks found historical...lest we forget her decision to allow me to stay home from Pre-K when Maria got married on Sesame Street. My addiction to pop culture has clearly been enabled by those closest to me for quite some time.]

At this point in my life, I don't know if I had ever focused on an episode of a late night show before. The jokes were always over my head, [Tangent: WHY IS THIS CLARENCE THOMAS COKE CAN GAG FUNNY!!??!] so I guess I found them useless and just continued to wish I was watching TGIF instead. That night was different. Not only did I watch my parents laugh hysterically, but I laughed, too. I remember them showing a clip of him wearing a velcro suit and stuck to the wall. It was so ridiculous that I can still picture it and how it was so stupidly funny that it bridged the generation gap between me and my parents. My mind raced with two thoughts: Who is this man? and OHMYGOD! This is the coolest job ever.

I'll admit, I haven't been 100% loyal to Dave. In fact, when Conan took over for Leno [for that year that existed] that was my clear choice from 10:30- 11:30. And once Jimmy Kimmel moved his show up a half hour, that has been my default. However, Letterman was my first love and I'm slowly realizing it as I have teared up at almost every episode counting down to his retirement. [Tangent: Most blatheringly during Ray Romano's heartfelt Thank You and then again during Norm McDonald's stand up set. It was so touching that snot might have presented itself. I even teared up during a montage of Rupert moments on last nights show.] As stated in Steel Magnolia's- "No one cries alone in my presence", so it's highly likely that I will be crying with many tonight and thanking my mom and dad for instilling in me the important things in life. [Tangent:...and remembering how hard my dad used to laugh every time they played Will it Float?]  Thanks, Dave!

Monday, May 11, 2015

My Mom's guide to Facebook

Last month was a momentous one because my mother joined Facebook, and as expected- she has heaps of commentary on the matter. [Tangent: My mother is the funniest no-filter person on the planet, and I often have said that if she had a Twitter account, she would be Internet Famous by her fourth entry.] Although practically every human in on the grid, my mom has always remained steadfast that she wasn't interested in joining. My father and her were always under the assumption that just because you joined the site meant that everyone HAD to know your business. [Tangent : I can't tell you how many times I heard "I don't want someone to know where I am at all times or what I'm having for dinner."] Over and over,  I tried to explain that FB only posts what you type in on the site, but they weren't  having it.

Being that everyday, and for a paycheck, I sit on Facebook, this abhorance of social networking didn't sit right with me [Tangent: OK. Maybe it wasn't  that bad before. Back before she was on social media, my mom never had to send me text messages to alert me that someone I know has posted an unflattering yet trying to be sexy picture or  god forbid to question why my boyfriend has posted a drawing of a penis in a post.]. She needed some frame of reference when I tried to tell her about my day at work. [Tangent: For example, if I wanted to brag on a day when I got a lot of "likes" for my work account. Her response before was, "What does that mean to 'like' it. I don't need Facebook to like you."]

When she broke her hip in February, my sister and I saw FB as a way to give her a project that would keep her occupied. Against her will, we set up her profile and started adding friends for her. Slowly she is picking up on ins and outs. [Tangent: I forget what it is like to be new to Facebook. I joined 10 years ago when it was still "the Facebook" and limited to people with university email addresses. I have adapted to the  evolution and the lingo and the various quirks, but explaining it to someone for the first time is surprisingly difficult. Sometimes it's like teaching English to someone from another makes sense to me, but I know it sometimes is illogical.] Within a week, she was already forming a lot of strong opinions about people on Facebook and had expressed several times to me a real concern that she would be Catfished. [Tangent: Yeah, although she wasn't on the social media grid, my mom watches Catfish and lots of Criminally-mindsy type shows, so she is super aware that the net can be a crazy place.]
Here are some of mom's feelings as a newcomer to the social matrix:

  1. Profile Pictures- My mom feels super strongly that it should be make it be of YOU...not your pet or you and 9 other people. This is mostly due from the fact that a lot of the people requesting her friendship are total blasts from the past and sometimes a name isn't ringing a bell, she relies on the photo. If the photo is of a kitten in a hoodie, it makes her powers of deductive reasoning null and void.
  2. Being invited to games- Because she is a newcomer to Facebook, she thinks being invited to play Farmville or being asked to get upped a level in Candy Crush is like being invited to a party. I heard her say the other day, "I got invited to play a game today, which is so nice of them because it's someone I don't know very well. Too bad I don't play." I'm sure after her 30 millionth invite, I'm sure it will lose it sweetness, but for now- mom finds the whole exchange very charming.
  3. Liking Your Own Picture - One day I came home from work and called my mom out on this faux pas. She, of course, had no idea that she had done it (and didn't know how to delete it), but was glad she had because it pushed it back into people's newsfeed, and hence got lots of new people to see it and comment and like it. So mom's lesson here, if you want more likes on your photos, give it a few days and like your own. I'm not sure this will catch on, but she has a valid point.  
This is just scratching the surface! Don't you think she's halfway to a technology blog by now?
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