Saturday, July 31, 2010

Movie Preview Wishlist

Since having babies, I hardly ever have free time to go to the movies, but there are a few coming out in the next few months that I am determined to see. 

Vampires Suck

I loved the Twilight novels, hated the first Twilight movie, thought New Moon was okay and enjoyed Eclipse.  I still can't stand Kristen Stewart, though, so anything mocking her is welcomed entertainment.  Besides all of that, I just love spoof movies.

Eat Pray Love

Although generally I'm iffy about films based on books because half of the time they're just huge disappointments, I love love LOVE Julia Roberts and will watch anything she's in.  The soundtrack sounds like a good one too. 

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Ah, Michael Cera, how I adore thee.   This movie just looks awesomely funny.  Plus, I love weird.  (NOTE:  The tagline for this film is "An epic of epic epicness."  I love it.)


Bruce Willis.  Morgan Freeman.  Helen Mirren.  John Malkovich.  Mary-Louise Parker.  Need I say more?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Fantabulous Friday

Well, it appears we've survived another week.


In celebration of another week gone by, it's time to make note of the fantabulous, and today I'm going with videos. *All videos will be from Youtube.*

First up is one I'm "borrowing" from a gal's blog I follow called It's All Random (it's a really great blog, so you should go check her out and click the "Follow" button!). On Tuesday her post was entitled "Youtube Tuesday" (catchy, isn't it?) and featured two videos - one from television show "The Office" and another that it was based on. Although the video from "The Office" was funny, the original made me laugh - and cry, strangely - and I watched it at least three times. Then when the hubby got home I made him watch it too. It's simply FANTABULOUS.

Next up is the chick who thought she'd surprise her husband with a self-installed stripper pole:

Here is the 100 Best Movie Quotes in 200 seconds. Not that I love all 100 of them, but they got the majority right!

Lastly, a collection of some of Jim Carrey's best moments. He's one of my favorite comedians. (My mother hates him, though she won't give me a straight answer as to why.)

Hope you enjoyed the FANTABULOUS videos!

Peace out.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Backpack Breakdown

Since school starts in twenty days (!!!), I decided it might be a good idea to start thinking about a bookbag.   I thought it would be easy.


Do you know how many options there are now?  It's backpack-a-palooza on L.L. Bean's website, and apparently Amazon also got the memo.  I'm not the most decisive person by any means, and when given too many alternatives, I tend to get overwhelmed. So now thanks to Mr. Bean and company, I have all of these options floating around in my head:

I can get the old-school backpack

which now comes in a variety of designs (original, original plus, original deluxe). 

There's the booksack for the student who might occasionally get a whim to go hiking
There's Critter packs (are people bringing their pets to school now?)

Quad packs

Turbo transit packs (makes me think Autobots! Transform and roll out!)

Apex packs

and Messenger Bags
These are all just by L.L. Bean.  I was afraid to look anywhere else.

Since I'd like to think of myself as up-to-speed on style, I'm favoring the messenger bag.  The bag doesn't look that roomy, though, and I worry that it won't hold everything I need.   The kid in me would like the original LL Bean (in a larger size) in that bright red, with my initials in a cute little diamond shape. 

You think I'm kidding, but I'm not. 

Then on Amazon I saw a messenger bag that was super-cute

for $319.  The hubby didn't even say anything when I showed it to him.  He just started laughing.  I didn't think it was funny. 

Decisions, decisions.

I guess I could always just use my daughter's Elmo backpack if need be.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Abnormal News Day

Looks like there's a new type of terrorist in town: ants.

Yes, the little bugs that live in mounds and eat your food at picnics.

According to ecologist Mark Moffett, he has proof that some ants are "suicide bomber" ants. 

I know, I was shocked too.  

Supposedly these ants are fed up with the insect government and have begun strolling into bug banks and schools with sticks of dynamite strapped to their chests. 

I kid. 

What this genius did was find a tree that was home to these angry ants.  He set a trap for other ants by spreading honey along the trunk.  Then he waited.

And waited.

Finally another species of ant and his buddies caught wind of the honey and decided to wander up the tree to find the source.  The first ant made it out alive, but only barely.  To quote the scientist: "That one would live another day."  How dramatic.  The second ant - an idiotic fellow - wandered up the tree next and got a wee bit too close to crazy ant. 

Crazy ant went all ninja and made herself "detonate,"  effectively killing her and the unfortunate dummy as well.  Our scientist was quick-draw McGraw and got a picture of the massacre. 
The yellow stuff is toxic

Dr. Brilliant described the scene: "Just as I clicked the shutter there was a splash of yellow, and both ants were immobilized in a sticky, grotesque tableau." 


Moffett goes on to describe other species of ant that have the ability to flatten their heads, kill off entire groups of themselves at a time, and make their limbs detach at will.

So, next time you come across an ant, BEWARE.  They just might blow snot on you. 

You can read the entire article here .

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Literary Lovin'

I woke up this morning, fixed a cup of coffee and logged into my various internet accounts:  Hotmail, Blogger, Facebook, 20sb.  A new photo album published on Facebook by a young girl from my church caught my attention, so I browsed through the pics, then took a look at her profile.  As I read the lists of favorite movies, books, music, etc., I was appalled.  When did Twilight become the absolute favorite book (series), and all other literary classics (ie: gold) become necessary evils of school reading lists?

(Editor's Note:  I do, in fact, own the Twilight Saga, and have read it numerous times.  That doesn't make it my favorite.)

It's disappointing that kids have no desire to read wonderful pieces of literary art anymore.  When I was a teen, I read classics over and over again, astounded at how an author described the characters in such a way that I developed an image of them in my head.  The stories unfolded like a movie in my mind, and I cherished them all.  Now you can only get a kid to read F. Scott Fitzgerald if their English grade is dependent upon it.


So, in my own form of protest, I've decided to list my ten favorite novels of all time in the hopes that young people will be inspired to go to the library or bookstore and read something other than Harry Potter or Twilight.

NOTE:  I'm not including The Bible in this list, because - in my opinion - everyone should own a Bible and read it often.  

Also, you won't find The Hobbit, 1984, Animal Farm or Of Mice and Men on this list, because although they're considered classics, I hated them.  Every stinkin' page. 

So, here we go....

10. Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

The book that inspired the movie that started the original vampire craze. No lovey-dovey vampire/human relationships in this book.   

9. The Hot Zone by Richard Preston
A true story about the incurable Ebola virus.   Stephen King himself described it as "one of the most horrifying things I've ever read." The film "Outbreak" was loosely based on this book.

8. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Battles of wit between independent Elizabeth Bennet and the charmingly cocky Mr. Darcy.  A lovely literary classic, entertaining from start to finish.

7. Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk
Multiple personality disorders, a secret society and extremist organization run amuck in this awesome book later turned into a film starring Brad Pitt and Ed Norton.

6. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
A story about sisters, feminism, individuality, hardships, love and family.

5. The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
A collection of short stories - all entertaining.  The movie "A Knight's Tale" is based on one of the stories and two other characters.

4. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis 

Investment banker by day.  Raping, murdering obssessive-compulsive 80s music buff by night.
Also inspired a movie starring Christian Bale.

3. A Density of Souls by Christopher Rice
The first novel by Anne Rice's son, a gripping and dark look into the lives of four childhood friends torn apart - and eventually brought back together - by alcohol, sex, homosexuality and tragedy. 

2. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
Excellently written story of Mary Boleyn, lover of King Henry VII, and the competition with her sister Anne.  Not completely historically accurate, but still a wonderful read. (Also much better than the movie, as usual.) 

1. The Great Gatsbyby F. Scott Fitzgerald
Bachelor Nick rents a home between two mansions, and after observing the aristocrats inside, becomes wrapped up in a world of unrequited love, mysteries and murder.  The Great Gatsby is considered by many to be a fictional examination of the "American Dream" (the 1920s version, that is).

One of the best books ever written, and my personal favorite. 

For need of sharing, I've also included a few "honorable mentions" for you guys:

That's all, folks.  Now go to your library, check a few of these out and enjoy!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Movie Delight Monday

Yes sirree, it's that time again.  Monday.  Ugh.

Starting a new week, lugging along, just waiting for Wednesday - because we all know once you reach Hump Day the rest is easy peasy. 

In accordance to the previous declaration of a heretofore mentioned appointment of assigned days of blogging (you can be impressed, it's okay), today has been deemed


Just makes you feel all tingly inside, doesn't it?

So, today I present to you one of my favorite 90s movies:

Goldie Hawn, Meryl Streep and Bruce Willis star in this delightfully dark comedy about frenemies and the man they both loved. 

Helen Sharp is a smart, plain-Jane woman, who brings dorky fiance' Dr. Ernest Menville to meet her best friend Madeline Ashton, a blonde singer/actress.  Madeline woos Ernest away from Helen, and Helen turns into a fat,  icing-eating slob with dozens of cats.  Obsessed with revenge, Helen makes some changes...

Years later Madeline and Ernest, stuck in a loveless relationship, are reunited with the new-and-improved Helen. An affair, murder plots and hilarity ensue.

Bruce Willis is wonderfully dense as Dr. Menville, and Streep and Hawn are entertaining to say the least.  This film had great special effects for early 90s production, and director Robert Zemeckis did an excellent job.   

NOTE TO PARENTS:  There are boobies shown in this film, and adult humor throughout.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Wedding Singer....and all that jazz

Last night myself and three girlfriends went to see the musical "The Wedding Singer" (based on the Adam Sandler movie) at Le Petit Theatre in New Orleans.  It was my first time seeing a musical that wasn't a high school or university production. 

Le Petit Theatre
The evening started out with the four of us beyond excited - not only to be seeing the musical, but to be having a girls' night out.  Three of us have children, and the fourth runs a daycare, so it was like a vacation to be away from the kids (and the men) for the night. 

We drove to Metairie - which, if you're like me, is the same as New Orleans (I consider everything south of Lake Pontchartrain New Orleans) - and had dinner at Mexican restaurant Chevy's. Yum.   After that we made our way to the French Quarter, where Le Petit Theatre is located.   We spent about thirty minutes trying to find parking, and ended up almost missing the beginning of the show.  Luckily we made it just in time.

Le Petit Theatre is a charming little place that sits near the famed St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square. 
St. Louis Cathedral

The Cathedral is one of my most favorite buildings to look at, so I had to include a picture of it for you.  I could stand out in the square and just admire it all day.  It's especially beautiful right as the sun is setting, and the sky above is varied colors of red, orange and purple.  Amazing.

But anyhoo, back to the theatre.

The full name of the theatre is Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre, and it was founded in 1917.  It is currently in its 94th season of productions, making it the oldest continuously operating community theatre in the nation.  Pretty impressive, huh?

When you first walk into the building, a massive - and beautiful - chandelier grabs your attention.  The lobby is decorated in a way that is somehow both current and reflective of its history. Then you head up the creaking staircase, and onto the balcony to be seated....

The theatre was much smaller than I anticipated, but it's not bothersome because you just feel a sense of intimacy about the room.  Someone commented that no matter where you sit - floor or balcony - you have a great view of the stage, and I believe it.  Our seats were excellent.  Second row, center. 

A glance around the theater showed signs of how very old it is.  The vents in the ceiling are stained with black, and pieces of the ceiling are crumbling or missing.  Everything about the place screams old, but it's so absolutely charming that the age just makes it that much better. 

The actors were fabulous, especially characters Robbie (lead), George (cross-dressing friend) and an unnamed black man who at one point wore a strapless silver dress and stilettos - and DANCED in them!  I was impressed. 

It was wonderful. Every song, dance, costume change, set change. All of it was utterly fabulous. I know I must have grinned throughout the entire two and a half hour show, because my face still hurts this morning.

I wasn't expecting to laugh nearly as much, and I certainly didn't expect so much of my amusement to be a result of nearby audience members.  There was a yuppy group, of which "mom" didn't realize that George was a man until about halfway through the show, then wanted to know "why is that man wearing girl clothes, and why is he dancing with the black man?"  To which her son replied, "Mom, they're gay."  "Oh," was her reply.  (Note:  George was obviously a man, and very obviously gay.)

All in all, the entire night was wonderful, and us girls decided to make a tradition out of it.  Every other month or so we will go to dinner and a theatre production.  We've already planned the next outing:  "Hairspray" will be playing at Le Petit in September.  I can't wait!