Monday, December 31, 2012

A movie review on a humor blog?

[Spoiler Alert: People die in this movie. If you don’t already know who and don’t want to know, you should read something else. Or just go right now and see the movie. I’ll wait.]

I know, a movie review on a humor blog? It doesn't make sense, but it’s my blog so spltttt (that’s how you spell a raspberry sound; look it up if don’t believe me).

The first time I went to see Les Miserables was on a high school date. I had no interest whatsoever in some musical about French poor people. But I walked out of the theater mesmerized. I soon had a pirated copy of the soundtrack ON CASSETTE TAPE (shut up) and then later went legit and bought it on CD. While other teenagers’ parents were banging on their bedroom door telling them to “Turn that awful music down,” my parents were doing the same… it’s just that I was listening to Les Miz, not Ozzy Osbourne.

I saw the musical two more times before I was out of college. I've sang “On My Own” so many times, I could probably sing it backward (I even sang it in a college musical audition – forward – although it didn't land me a part). My dream was to someday play Eponine somewhere, somehow.

In the middle of this Les Miz love, I met Terrence Mann, who played Javert when Les Miz opened on Broadway. He was kind to a bunch of starstruck theater students, endured giggling girls, and made us all feel important. So my Les Miz love was further strengthened.

I can’t say I can sing every note of every song. There were songs I didn’t love, and I tended to skip around to play the ones I could have played a part in (factory worker, prostitute, dying mother, lovestruck girl, dying lovestruck girl…). I don’t own any of the anniversary DVDs, but I have seen the performances in part on TV.
So now you know what kind of fan sat in the audience of the movie tonight.

First off, let me tell you all with great pride that I DID NOT HAVE TO LEAVE THE MOVIE TO PEE. NOT ONCE! Three hours from previews until I applauded at the end and I didn’t miss a note. I’d like to take a moment to thank my doctor and my physical therapist for this accomplishment.

Moving on.

The movie. Looks. Amazing.

So much of my memory of the story was confined to the revolving stage of the late 80s and early 90s. I felt like, with the film, my view was broadened, like someone opened the curtains and let the light in. THIS was what was going on on the other side of the barricade? WOW!

From the first song, I was a bit bothered to realize that the critics were right about one thing: Russell Crowe’s singing voice was not up to par. His acting was good, but his voice, for me, was a distraction. Russell Crowe does not equal Terrence Mann. Not even close. And that’s too bad.

But, otherwise, the actors did not disappoint. Amanda Seyfried, her light, quivering voice was perfect for Cosette. If I had to listen to an album of her singing like that, I might have to poke myself in the eyeball with a fork, but for this film, it worked just fine. There were spots in which I didn't love the timber of Hugh Jackman's voice but really, he did very well. Ann Hathaway… you know, I was ready to dislike her casting because I thought of Fantine as being a bit older, but damn. That woman CAN SING. Holy crap, y’all! Two notes into “I Dreamed a Dream” and I was crying into the napkin I brought from Red Robin for just such an emergency. Her performance was far more riveting than any other of Fantine I have witnessed on CD, TV, or stage.

In the movie medium, everything is so close up. I never saw Fantine’s face before as she drifted through her memories of what she thought her life would be like before everything crashed and burned. But the close ups, they would either make it or break it, and with Ann, she made it up one side and down the other. Beautiful.

The close-up perspective helped me understand the characters in ways I didn’t before. They also made parts of the movie more upsetting. The dramatic deaths of the Revolution soldiers, man. While watching the musical, anyone who sang their way through their death got some tears out of me, but the other deaths, while sad, weren’t as moving (for me). Not so in the film. Seeing the faces of the fallen and their comrades was really upsetting. Gavroche, oh my gosh! Horrible.

I felt like some of the death scenes could have done with a little less drama (do I really NEED to hear a sickening crunch when someone falls to their death?) When an important character dies, I shouldn’t wince and say, “Gross!” But mostly, the close-up views gave me another interesting way to experience the story.

The Thénardiers, well, they were never my favorite part of the musical, but I feel like they were a bit over done in the movie. The characters were believable in the fantasy of theater, but less so under the microscope of film. Plus, what was with Madame Thénardier’s sunglasses in her last scene? Did they even HAVE sunglasses back then? And, if so, were they little John Lennon glasses? DID NOT LIKE.

I read before going in to the movie that Colm Wilkinson, the original Jean Valjean, and Frances Ruffelle, the original Eponine, had parts in the film. I loved spotting Wilkinson, and I was excited to hear that he can still sing. It was weird seeing him acting with Hugh Jackman in Wilkinson’s former role. I was not able to recognize Ruffelle, whom I think sings like an angel, although the credits listed her as “Whore #1.” I hope that was her choice of role, because otherwise I think that may have been a diss.

My husband, who hates musicals and didn’t know much about Les Miz, found the movie to be fairly OK. But since he doesn’t like “that kind of singing,” he likened the movie to going to a concert when you don’t like the genre of music being performed. “But the story was good,” he says. He just would have preferred it to be all story. Which is kind of hard for, you know, a musical.

If you saw the musical and you didn’t like it, you’re not going to love this film. If you loved the musical, however, I think you won’t be disappointed. I think you’ll see aspects of the story you may have missed in the past. And if you never saw it before, you should go, watch, and make up your own mind. Oh, and bring some tissues.

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Friday, December 7, 2012

This is exactly the kind of thing that happens to me

Yesterday I went to my GP for my annual check up. After the exam, he recommended getting a Tetanus shot. He thought my current Tetanus vaccination plan ("get a Tetanus shot whenever I do the kind of bodily harm that exposes me to Tetanus") was not ideal, and he said the new Tetanus shot also protects people against Whooping Cough. I'm not too interested in whooping so I agreed to it. I declined the flu shot, though, because I got it in Walgreen's back in September. 

The doctor left and the nurse came in and gave me the shot first. Then she needed blood for some annual tests. She started on my left arm (the shot went in the right arm, so I guess she was balancing me out). She got about half a vial and that was it. She tried a bit more and then said she needed to swap arms. Super.

So I offered my already vaccinated arm for the cause, and she eventually got enough blood out, although not without having several equipment malfunctions that drew out the process. My arms both sport some magnificent bruising today. The shot below, taken yesterday, does not show the full glory of the colors.

I checked out and went to the bathroom (of course). I started to look over my receipt. And then I saw it. "Flu vaccine."


I think I did some swearing in the bathroom, and then I went back to the check-out desk.

"Excuse me. I think I was just given the wrong shot."

The receptionist's eyes got big as she listened to my explanation. She took my paperwork and was gone for a really long time.

Fortunately, the doctor had the nerve to admit his mistake. He apologized and took full responsibility for writing down the wrong thing, which I have to give him credit for. Then he said, "So, the Tetanus shot's still on the table...."

So I sat down, offered the other arm, and sucked it up.

Now I'm extra awesomely protected against the flu and I have sore rainbow arms too. Lucky me!

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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Puppy Love!

We have a new puppy at our house. It's upped the insanity quotient by at least 50%. (Don't argue with my math.) Yesterday, Husband and I had this conversation:

Me (cuddling with the puppy): Ahh, puppy breath.

Husband: Ugh, it's awful!

Me: WHAT?! Everyone loves puppy breath!

Husband: No way, it smells like burnt... something. Something burnt.

Me: It smells like puppy breath! Every puppy's breath smells like that. 

Husband: No way. It smells burnt.

Me: THIS IS HOW PUPPY BREATH SMELLS AND PEOPLE LOVE IT. I don't know why it smells this way but it always does!

Husband: Whatever. I know burnt when I smell it.

Me: @#$%!

Ahhh, puppy love!

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Monday, November 26, 2012

A creative mess

Doesn't it look like a little boy just melted into the floor right here? School today must have been hard. It left The Boy in a puddle!

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

She's been gone forever and her first post back is this one?

Chick-fil-a has their yearly cow-themed calendar out and I can't believe that no marketing genius has decided to call it a "cowlendar." I mean, seriously, how could they miss out on that?

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Friday, September 21, 2012


Sometimes the question is not "Am I going to step in poop?" but instead "How much poop am I going to step in?" 

This is both a life philosophy AND an accurate statement about walking in my backyard.

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Maybe this will save my TV

The Girl is currently doing rhythmic gymnastics with the "ribbon" I made for her from a pencil, a long piece of yarn, and some tape. This sounds really creative on my part but really, I came up with the ribbon idea during the Olympics when her attempts at doing rhythmic gymnastics with a hula hoop nearly wrecked everything I own. Necessity is the mother of invention, right?

Her first routine was to Call Me Maybe.  I gave it an 8 out of 10.

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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Young, Armstrong, what's the difference

I discovered this in my facebook news feed and found it so amusing that I was inspired to learn to take a screenshot (thank you, Google). Can you spot the error in this article preview?

I suppose it would have been nice if my comment started with "I'm so sorry to hear this," and DIDN'T end with "LOL," because LOL and death are probably best served separately. My apologies. corrected the problem apparently within a few minutes, after this fellow posted in the comments:

Astronaut Neil Young, first man to walk on moon, dies at age 82
Neil Young? Really? Holy crap, get the mans name right you idiots.

I'm not even going to be picky about the missing apostrophe, because I'm sure the sheer ridiculousness of that mistake shocked the proper punctuation right out of him.

The site then added this "non-apology" note to the beginning of the article:

 (Editor's note: An earlier version of this story included the wrong name in the headline.)

Well done. Or not. Something like that. At any rate, rest in peace, Mr. Armstrong. 

Play on, Mr. Young.

If you want to read the full article, you can find it here.

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Friday, August 17, 2012

I spent about 20 minutes tonight doing this*

Since we live in a one-story house, we had to get creative with our stairs. This was our most impressive creation. Sometime I'll show all the outtakes it took to get this one. One near-perfect go-round was marred by an unpleasant word (thank you, Tourette's Syndrome), and another perfect run was foiled by an overly excited child who walked in front of the camera, blocking the view.

The slinky is courtesy of a trip to Chuck E. Cheese, where The Boy managed to spend his bazillion tickets on something that was actually fun and didn't break after the first use. For a change.

*Actually that "I" should be "we," since I certainly wouldn't have pursued this entertaining project without the two small people who inhabit my home. Thank goodness their presence reminded me how fun a slinky can be, even when they were fighting over it!

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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Maybe it's time to go to bed

In the last 30 minutes I have put ear drops in my eye (OW!), worn two different flip flops to the pet store, and referred to a cool skull-shaped bottle as "a skeleton head." It's totally time to call it a day, but instead I'm going to go dye my hair. Anyone want to place bets on how this is going to go?

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Monday, July 23, 2012

I wouldn't drink that if I were you....

Once again, it was time for me to leave a urine sample in my urologist's office as part of the instillation process. Instillations are a fun part of having interstitial cystitis, since this treatment is a medicine that is instilled in the bladder through a catheter. Catheters are super fun and exciting instruments of torture. Wohoo!

This time I was lacking some creativity on what to write on the outside of my urine specimen cup. If you are a long-time reader of this blog, you'll remember that I like to write a bit of whimsy on the outside of each cup, just because. This was fun at first but then the nurse admitted that sometimes when she has a crummy day, she actually looks forward to handling my pee just because of the little statement on the cup. Pressure!

So, I resorted to asking for ideas on facebook. I got several, but the winning idea came from Scott Lovelis. He suggested getting a Mott's apple juice sticker for the cup. Now, I didn't have one of those hanging around but I did have a bunch of Mott's juice boxes and the cardboard thingo that goes inside the shrink-wrapped container of boxes. So I got out my scissors and packed the cut-out and some tape in my purse. And I giggled a little.

This idea only worked because I’m in pretty good shape, pain-wise, nowadays and I don’t have to use bladder pain meds very often. The pain meds make urine either fire red or an odd toilet-bowl-cleaner blue. Neither would be likened to apple juice.
I went into the bathroom to execute my plan. I decorated the cup, took the picture, and then realized I could never pee in it and not bump/knock off/mess up the Mott’s sign. So I had to employ a second cup and then poured the pee in the creative cup VERY CAREFULLY. I am very committed to this gag, clearly.

The nurse loved it, of course! She complimented me on my creativity. I had to admit I’d gotten the idea from someone on facebook. I’m pretty sure she still thinks I’m awesome.

To add to today’s fun, my regular nurse was training a new nurse. This nurse had never done a catherization before (and she still hasn’t; today she was just watching, thankfully) and so my regular nurse had to give a step-by-step lecture on the whole thing. “You see this? This is the urethra.” Wonderful.

Life. It just doesn’t get much better than this!

The "or not" part was all me. 

For more posts about Interstitial Cystitis, including all my crazy urine cups, click here. 

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Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Banana Song

My daughter has suggested that this (very excellent) Marina and the Diamonds' song be renamed "The Banana Song." Can you guess why?

Also, Marina is hella cute, and her lyrics are smart, funny, and ironic too. That is all.
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Friday, July 13, 2012

Yay! I'm! So! Excited!

OK! I would LOVE to put my items in this basket! What an great idea!

Librarians must be easily excited. Or, at least, easily excited by the idea that library patrons might put their returned stuff in its place rather than leaving it all the hell over the library. 

Remind me to never be a librarian. That ish is hard work.

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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Good one!

Yesterday, like every day this summer, I was arguing with The Boy about wearing sunscreen. He's got some sensory issues and hates the application of sunscreen, particularly to his face, neck, and ears. Recently I got sunburned myself because I was busy applying the kids' lotion and then I sent them off to the pool and haphazardly sprayed my own back. I had stripes of non-burned skin where the spray had saturated surrounded by red areas. As a twitter friend of mine, @revfridge, said, sunscreen is SO literal.

Anyway, since my children have never really been sunburned, I used my artistically striped back as a lesson, showing them what it looks like to be burned and describing that it hurt. So, when the latest go-round of "Why do I have to wear sunscreen" started, I told my little 8-year-old darling, "You should see my back; it’s still in pain." And he replied:

"You should see my butt, because you’re a pain in it."

Husband and I were stunned silent for a moment, and then I said:

"I gotta say, that was one of your better ones."

And then Husband went back to applying The Boy's sunscreen.

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Never smirk, even internally.

Karma's a b!tch.

Today at Vacation Bible School, some of the kids made door hangers. You know, those things you hang on the knob that say something like "Keep out!" on one side and "Come on in," on the other. I'm not sure what, if anything, the door hangers had to do with the lessons of the day, but no worries, it's a fun, innocent project, right?

Well, maybe.

The first door hanger thingo I saw belonged to the six-year-old daughter of a friend. On one side of the hanger, it said, "Cum in," and on the other side it said, "Do not cum in."

I laughed, but only on the inside. Her mom quite calmly complimented the child on her work and gently said, "By the way, come is spelled C-O-M-E." The daughter said, "OK. But I did it myself you know?" and her mom praised her efforts again. I was still smirking a bit, until my son came out with his door hanger.


The Boy flung his work of art at me and then went to wait for his friend. On one side, there was a bizarre drawing, which he later explained to be a scene from a Mario game involving a flag and various characters. It was the other side that got me. It said... get ready...

"Do not do it. I am on the toylit."


I said, "Boy! I can't imagine that your teacher liked this! What did she say?"

All smiles, clearly proud of his naughtiness, he said, "She said if it was bad she was going to throw it out and we would have to make a new one. She didn't throw it out, so I guess she thought it was OK!" He dashed off to resume waiting for his friend.

I'm so proud of his work.

Oh good, another chance to use this photo.

UPDATE: I asked his teacher and she said she did not, in fact, see his door hanger and approve it. Figures.

Clearly, I'm going to need to send this kid to college. I may need to take advantage of upromise online rewards to help make that happen. Plus I should also find Walmart coupons because I'm totally going to need a lot of help. Better start saving now. He really needs to learn how to spell "toilet," at the very least. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

I didn't really know what it was about when I put it on hold.

The copy of Fifty Shades of Grey I requested is now available at my local library. I sure hope the pages aren't sticky.

Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy

You can't really click to look inside. My apologies for the lie. 

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Maid you look!

Damn right I'm unhappy with my maid service! Those people do a piss poor job of cleaning this house. The woodwork is atrociously dirty, the floors seem to always need mopping, and have you seen the master bedroom? It's dust-city. Honestly, those people ought to be fired because...

Oh wait.

I don't HAVE a maid service. Guess I had better enter their free housecleaning drawing, eh?

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A talent nobody really wants

Girl: Mom! Mom! I am SOOOOO talented!

Me: Oh yeah? Why is that?

Girl: I just peed like a boy!

Me: What?

Girl: I just peed like a boy! I put the toilet seat up and walked up to it and leaned like this [she demonstrates] and I peed standing up!

Me: Wow. You probably shouldn't try that again.

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

I really need to put a hamper in the bathroom

Recently, The Girl went streaking through the house, naked, to put her clothes in the laundry room before her bath. As she ran by, The Boy said, "Heh heh heh. I see your balls."

Me: What?

Boy: I see her balls.

Me: What do you think "balls" are?

Boy: Uh... Her butt cheeks?

Me: No. Balls are testicles. They are part of a boy's privates. She doesn't have any balls.

Boy: Oh.

Girl: HA! Balls, balls, balls! He has BALLS!

Me: Please don't repeat that at preschool.

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Honey, I shrunk my notepad!

I had hoped to steal borrow a hotel notepad to use while interviewing people at a dog event I'm covering. No, the pen in that photo is not super-sized. I included it for scale so that you can see what I'm working with here.  It's a post-it note sans the sticky. 

Expect really, really short interviews from this show.

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Ever the optimist

I found out today that I had already paid for two things I thought I still needed to pay for. I choose to look at this as really good news rather than as evidence of poor record keeping and memory loss. I'm a glass-half-full kind of gal.

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Sunday, April 29, 2012

That's OK, you don't know what I'm making about you....

Not long ago, I posted a fantastic spam message that came to a business account for a company. Yesterday, I got a great direct message to the same business's twitter account. This came from a hacked user, and it went like this:

Hi this user is making terrible things about you... [link removed]
Direct message sent by XXXXXX to you 

This message brings up a lot of questions. I can't imagine what kind of terrible things someone might be making that have something to do with me. A statue of my likeness that breathes fire? A computer virus named after me? An unauthorized biography full of scandalous stories (obviously made up because, as you know, I am awesome)? What else could it be?

Also, I'm really torn up about the lack of reasonable grammar in this DM. Honestly, if you are going to go to all the trouble to hack and spam, have a good editor look over your message first. 

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The one where I eat some crow

So in my last post, I may have cast aspersions on my local Walgreen's based Red Box. (Quick, define "cast aspersions" without looking it up. Yeah, I thought so. Me too.) I may have accidentally suggested that the odd-looking DVD we rented of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo might possibly have been a copy rather than the original. You might have even gotten the impression that I was implying that something funky was going on. I assure you that was not my intention. Ahem.

For whatever reason, I decided to tweet Red Box, showing them my photo of the DVD and asking them what the heck was up with it. I considered linking to the original blog entry to show them what I was talking about, but then I (wisely, it turns out) decided to just attach the photo.

This is the tweet I got back:

 That's how the disc was designed by the movie studio because Lissbeth (the main character) plays a computer hacker.


Never in the history of ever would I have thought that that's how the disc came from the manufacturer. Honestly, I blame you people for my glaring error. Didn't at least one of you guys rent or buy that movie? Surely one of you read this and knew I was completely off-base and could have told me before I went and got all tweety over it. Sheesh.

OK, maybe it's a tiny bit my fault for jumping to conclusions. MAYBE. 

So, anyway. Yay, Redbox! You rock at providing awesome, not-bootlegged DVDs at low, low prices.

Please don't sue me.

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