Monday, August 31, 2009

Awesome Basterds

I am a great lover of Quentin Tarrentino, as most of you know, and this latest film is no exception. As we were getting our tickets the girl warned us that it was very violent. I asked her if many people had complained. She said that some people had actually left and demanded their money back. So, I was ready for some good 'ol Tarrentino violence and gore!

I do not know what might have been wrong with those folks, but as his movies go this one was really low on both levels. I even described it to several people as somewhat lame by Tarrentino standards. Nowhere near the levels of Kill Bill or Death Proof. This film was more about his excellent skills at writing and weaving the dialog and the story.

I will be seeing this one again. There is such great dialog and the characters have some wonderful exchanges. I know that I missed many things and need to see it again to pick up on all the small details. As I have said before he has so much in every scene that I was busy looking at his visuals and sometimes missed what was going on with the actors.

As always he had small surprises and treats for those who follow his work. The addition of Samuel Jackson, who is in several of his films, as well as Harvey Kietel. Also it is interesting to see where and how he adds feet. he always has someone barefoot. In this film it was the German actress. Uma Thurman in two previous films.

I could go on forever, but will just stop here and say that it was such an enjoyable film I will go again and if you have not seen it you might think about giving it a try! Also I might add that it took what is a very boring subject, for me, and made it quite an interesting story.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


It is often interesting to me how Mixter and I are often moving in similar directions. She will mention, or blog, about something that I am either doing or thinking or have been preparing to do. Recently she mentioned that she has been in "goof off" mode..... and I am just getting back in to a very similar mode.

For weeks I was in a very high stress mode, which does not serve one well, and not very functional or happy. One of those things that we do to ourselves, self-sabotage if you will, and I was in to it full steam ahead!! I was doing the full menu of self criticism, bad-talking and just letting myself get very down on myself. As if life is not hard enough without beating yourself up!

Then, my very good friend from high school, said some things to me that made me stop and think. I also got up and started to work out again. I have also been very lax about this since my 8 week bout of bronchitis and my few weeks of bursitis in my knee. The knee issue has made it almost impossible for me to run and so I am left to walk and use the elliptical at the gym. It really does make a difference in my mental state when I am outside doing things. Walking the dog or just putzing in my gardens. I have just come to understand that the knee will never change so I had better get in to a different mind set.

I have also gotten back to journaling and writing. Several months ago I started a little project that I like to refer to as my book. Yes, you hear correctly....I am writing a book. My class reunion was really the first time that I began to actually say it outloud and tell people. Now it's real. John told me one night that the reason he gave me this laptop was not so I could just sit and do e-mail and blog, but he thought that I would one day write a book. Well, you could have knocked me over with a feather! I had never given it any thought....EVER!

He thinks that I have stories to tell and that I am pretty funny. I began to think about this.......hmmmmmm, what stories do I have to tell? Then he began to mention parts of my life and/or things that I have told him and that was when I realized....I do have some stories and they can be pretty funny. So one night I was feeling full of thoughts and I pulled an all nighter. I had to be up at 5:00 the next morning for work, but I was on fire! Jotting down chapter ideas and just typing like I was out of control. I got in to my third chapter.

I let it go for a few weeks, while I was in my slump, all the while worrying that I was wasting a good thing. This week I got them out and read them again, they are pretty funny, and got to typing again.

My job is just a means to an end. I was beginning to hate my job, but have decided that it is what allows me the freedom to write! If I had an every day 9-5 again I would not have such freedom. If I was still teaching I might have my summers off, but I would have so many daily/weekly demands that I would still be too tired during the week. No, this job is so easy and undemanding, most times or as much or as little as I make it, that it is the right place for me to be right now.

I can be pretty hard headed, but I know that it is only when I open up and listen to the good folks around me, as well as myself and my own body, am I really able to see and hear what are the right choices and decisions for me. It is truly interesting how much less we want to be concerned with the trappings of life, as we get older, but rather more with how happy our own little corner of the world might be.

Listening is a good skill. Responding to yourself......even better!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Unbelieveable & Unacceptable

I could barely contain my anger as I read this Time Magazine article about an Atheist couple that are being denied adoption.

I can not even believe that, in the year 2009, there has to be any debate about this issue. Or non-issue as I see it.

A person, or a couples, belief system should not come into play at anytime during an adoption proceeding. Raising good kids does not mean that you have to inject their little heads with all kinds of fictional Bible stories to make them good people. Force them to wear dresses and ties and go to church on Sundays and sit still for hours on end as they listen to pompous religious leaders telling them how they are going to burn in hell.

The idea of adopting is to make sure that the people are safe and not kooks. Their belief in a Big Guy in the Sky should make no difference in whether they can afford to raise and care for children or if they have a clean home that is safe from all childhood dangers. The lack of a God belief is not nor should it be a qualifier.

The idea of judges making "God belief" a necessary element for adoption is appalling. Good people are good people and I, for one, am tired as hell of the demonizing of Atheists and non-believers.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Death Proof

Yes, I am a bit behind the times. I just watched Death Proof last night for the first time. It most certainly will not be the last!!!

I have been a Quentin Tarrentino fan for many years, but just never took the time to go see the Grind House movies when they were in the theatre. Last night a good friend invited me, and a nice bottle of wine, over to watch Death Proof. I LOVED it!!

I have always found Kurt Russell hot, especially the older version, but in this film he looks especially good, BUT is a character like he has never played. A character like only Tarrentino could create. Never forgettable.

To be sure there is MUCH dialog!! Far more than I believe in any past films. You really have to watch and listen. As usual the characters are SOOOO multidimensional. Just some awesome lines. Many I wish that I could memorize and use in real life. So many references to his past work and homages to film noire that are Tarrentino trademarks.

As always it was also a visual treat! He puts so much into a scene that you have so many choices of what to look is hard to stay in one place. I saw a Brad Pitt interview for the new film, Inglorious Basterds, and he stated that Quentin knows very certainly how he wants his films to look etc. down to the most minute details. That is obvious to those of us who are fans.

By the end I was howling with laughter, dark as it may have been, and screaming with surprise. Not at all for the faint of heart. Those turned off by and violence, especially the dark and gratuitous sort, should not even bother to watch. If you are a fan of any sort of dark humor, and I mean really dark, and you might enjoy some crazy surprises and car crashes...then you should rent Death Proof. It is a solid, fun romp!!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

One for Our Team!

Looks like the Iowa Atheists and Freethinkers were able to score one for the team!!

The ads that had been on the sides of the city buses about a lack of God had been taken off and then the group was able to get them put back on!! Good for them. If every church in the state and town is able to advertise I don't see any reason why another group can not put their signage up as well. Besides I think the sign is funny! "Don't believe in God? You are not alone." Funny stuff.

I have actually contacted the United Coalition of Reason
to see what it would take to get a group started up in the college town where I live. I think that it would be very well received. I'll let ya know how that works out!! Maybe we can get some good signs on our local buses!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

They Got Me!

See this picture? Yes Virginia, this is what happens to people who take Benadryll and then drink a glass of wine as a chaser!

Sunday was about the hottest it has been all summer. I think that they said that the heat index was about 113. Factor in the humidity and it is easy to say that it was a miserable day. I got off work right in the midst of it.

My plan was to come home, get some wine and water my gardens. Little did I know that there was a clan of yellow jackets taking up a living space in the bricks of my basement! So when I was moving the hose around and beginning to water I was pissing them off. In that heat I think that they were quite angry!

So I got stung several times in my right shoulder and as I was dealing with that a few more of them got up the sleeve of my tee shirt, on the right armpit, and started to sting. I went running down the driveway screaming. Now here comes the part that really pisses me off! I was running with my glass of wine and I had to throw it and it broke all over my backyard! A seriously annoying waste of good wine.

My neighbors have seen me water with wine many times. I am sure that I have now solidified their thoughts of me as a raging,crazy drunk!!

I came in the house as soon as I was sure that there were no more on me and found some Benedryll to take. I sat down with my new glass of wine to watch one of my fave movies, "Underworld". John took this pic as the drugs and wine were beginning to work. Good thing I have seen that movie a zillion times!

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Coffee Brewing Can Be Dangerous

Thursday I sprained my left pinkie finger at work. I was making some drinks in a blender and my little finger went under the counter while the rest of my hand went above AND in another direction. It hurt and swelled IMMEDIATELY! OUCH!!!!!

Naturally it was during the morning rush and we were quite busy. Everyone saw my reaction and knew that I was in pain. One customer told me to get it on ice right away. It was one of those incidents that makes you get goose bumps and a cold sweat as soon as it happens.

I iced for a few minutes and then got the medical tape from the first aid kit and taped the last two fingers together and that was how I worked the rest of my shift. Took a few ibuprofen and drank a few more shots of espresso.

Not much you can do with a sprained little finger, so after a few days of taping it, icing and resting it I am using the compression sleeve that John got for his injury in India. This keeps it in place and I don't have to worry about moving it or bumping it when I go back to work tomorrow.

Maybe this is God's way of paying me back for even thinking about going with Mixter & Guy!!

Monday, August 03, 2009


I took some much needed and well deserved time off this past weekend. Four days to be exact. Today is the last day. Why do we acrue vacation time if we don't use it once in awhile for mental health time? Also, my best friend from high school was here for our class reunion. He comes in from New York and we always go on a standing date.

Max turns 19 today. He spent the weekend working on his car. New muffler, various filters etc.

We hung out, I putzed in the garden, watched misc. movies, drank wine, slept late, never set the alarm. Ate too much. John & I went to Quaker Steak & Lube on a gift card. They have deep fried pickles as an appetizer! I was in heaven. So few people have them and I really love them!! Long, breaded spears with an awesome dipping sauce.

John left today for Norwalk, Ohio. Still eeking out work! A machine that was sold some time ago and just getting built, but work none the less. Aftre this there is nothing else, but he still has expenses to do from India, so that may take him to September at least.

My pals Mixter & Guy are off to the Creation Museum! They even offered to come and pick me up, but my work schedule was already set. Have a good time kids!! an't wait to see and hear all about this adventure!

So, I leave you now with a few snap shots of my excellent mental health weekend!!

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Out to Lunch?

Where was God when this father was letting his daughter die? Out to lunch maybe? Sarcastic? You bet! Another of these religious whack jobs lets his kid die while waiting for the Lord to step in and heal her.

I am so tired of these stories on so many levels. I am tired of these nut job parents, whether they really believe it or not, waiting for God to heal their ill children. Are there no people in the lives of these kids that could turn them in to human services? Are there no teachers , neighbors or outside people that ever come into contact with these sick or mistreated kids?

I was thrilled this morning when I read that the parents of the deceased girl were both found guilty in her death.

"A central Wisconsin man accused of killing his 11-year-old daughter by praying instead of seeking medical care was found guilty Saturday of second-degree reckless homicide."

She could not walk, talk or eat! " The father testified that he thought Madeline had the flu or a fever, and several relatives and family friends said they also did not realize how sick she was."
I don't know about your experiences, but when my kid had the flu his symptoms were never this severe.

Yet another good example of how the crazy, Christian whack jobs can't think for themselves. They have bought into "group think" and are yet more sheeple who think that there is a big sky daddy that rules their lives. They simply are too afraid of real life to live it on their own terms and to think on their own!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

I've Fallen and I Can't Get Up

I have not posted for awhile......been dealing with some personal stuff. When you are generally a strong individual you too can sometimes bend, but being strong also means that you can pull yourself up as well. It just takes some time and some reflection.

So, yesterday afternoon we were all doing this out in the yard. It was a beautiful Sat. and there were things to be done! Max was messing with the brakes and a new muffler on his car, John was instructing and I had been pulling various weeds and the like from my gardens all the while sipping a nice red wine.

When all was said and done Max and his girlfriend were walking down the driveway to head to the mall and John and I were going inside when they came back to get me and said that there was an old lady laying on the sidewalk out front!

I told John to call 911 and I ran out front. There she was laying on the sidewalk, her walking chair tipped over and some smallish, freaked out woman was consoling her. I went in to EMT mode and began to assess her situation. They were trying to get her out for a walk, but she hit a crack in the sidewalk and fell. The other lady could not get her up and was freaked out.

The victim really wanted to get up, but I was wary, due to her age to let her just get up. John came out with his cell phone and they just wanted to call family. She lives on the lower end of our street. Just her and her elderly husband. One of her kids was going to come over. They really did not want EMS called although her did hit her head and I was concerned about that.

She did get helped home, by John and her son, and as we walked home I noticed something. There were other neighbors out on their porch and they had just watched the whole thing unfold and never once said anything, or offered any assistance. Even if it wasn't needed. How could they see us, on the sidewalk, with this very elderly woman and not get up and ask if help was needed?

As we were still on the sidewalk I noticed that an SUV pulled up near us and the kid whose dad lives in the house we were in front of, got out of the car and ran inside for a few seconds and then back out. His mom had pulled up a few feet away and let him out of the car. She saw us all huddled around this old lady, she had previously lived on this street when married to the kids dad, and she did not even roll down the window to ask if we needed anything! I was shocked or maybe I am just naive?

Are people so indifferent? How could/can you ignore someone laying on a sidewalk or in a street? Especially in such a residential neighborhood. It's not like we were in a ghetto or inner city setting. It is very unusual to see something like that here. I was happy that Max came back to get me. It is nice to know that he knew that it was the right thing to do. I hate to think that these other neighbors saw this happen/happening and were so indifferent that they did nothing.

I know that in this day and age people rarely know their neighbors anymore, but I still can not imagine how you can see someone in need of assistance and not do anything.

She said that she did have a bump on her head. You can't make anyone transport or receive assistance if they do not want it, so I just hope that she is okay today.