Monthly Archives: January 2011

Trapped in the Movies

You heard me. It’s a rainy day and what says “rainy day activity” better than the movies. The movies have changed a great deal in the past decade. What use to be an affordable date is now an undertaking worthy of a small theme park. Not Disneyland or even Knotts Berry Farm but perhaps Pharoah’s Kingdom or Raging Waters. The prices are through the roof, even for matinees, and the food is out of control.

Five dollars for a small popcorn? Really? I think popcorn is $10 a silo and you want to change me $5 for a small one, $5 for a regular (read Large) drink and $6 for a box of candy. That’s $16 on a snack plus the $12 admission makes $28 just to see a film that might not even be that good. $28 for two hours of entertainment or painful boredom. Sometimes you even have to pay for parking. Now double this if you are on a date. $56! Let’s just call it $60 once you add in parking or gas.

I don’t have $28 to blow on the movies so I went to a matinee, spent $7, didn’t buy any drinks or popcorn or candy. I did smuggle a few bags of Southwest peanuts, a bag of Terra Blue chips from JetBlue and a small bottle of crystal geyser in my purse. There are hardly any people because they are home watching movies in streaming HD video on their big, flat screen TV’s.

So I settle down and what comes on the screen? Previews of coming attractions? Nope. Commercials. I am trapped in the movie theatre by commercials. I thought that was one of the reasons we went to the movies was to get away from commercials. I guess they figured while you are waiting for the movie to start, watching commercials will help alleviate the boredom but all it does is melt your brain.

So I watch stupid quizzes and what’s going to be on some kids channel when a car commercial comes on. It’s for a GMC hybrid car. Everyone is on the beach, splashing around. I have no idea what this has to do with cars but at least it’s not a bunch of hamsters. The I notice something, no one is bigger than a size 6. I know, I know, welcome to the world but what is GMC saying? Are they trying to make us feel like pigs or are they telling us our asses are too huge to fit in a hybrid so don’t buy one? Hmmm, that’s a good message when you are trying to SELL CARS!

I have no idea why I need to be trapped in a theatre, paid for the privilege, and then have commercials shown to me. I think staying home and watching Netflix is getting better and better all the time.

People Watching In San Francisco

So I was in The City the other day for a job interview. I have decided that while jobs in The City are preferable since they pay more, it also costs more to get there to interview for a job you may or may not get. Let’s see:

Bridge Toll – $5
Ferry Toll (round trip) – $11.20

So that is a bare minimum of $16.20 just to get there. What about BART? What about it? Let’s see, $7.80 round trip plus $1 for parking for a grand total of $8.80. A savings of $7.40. $37 cheaper per week and $148 cheaper per month. Though if you are making decent money, it’s worth it to have a nice 35 minute ferry ride in comfort, walk 20 minutes to work and drink a beer on the way home as opposed to being shoved into a smelly car, standing the whole way next to people with questionable hygiene.

But that wasn’t it. It was the parking. There wasn’t any. You see, when you need to go into The City mid-day, the BART lots are full and street parking is restricted to two hours. So it’s the ferry. But the ferry lot was full so I park across the street in the “overflow lot” which may or may not have been parking for Togo’s but I took my chances.

Once there, I was dazzled by the wonder that is the Ferry Building and tried to keep myself from buying everything in sight with my near non-existent money. As I started walking down Market towards Montgomery I played “Who Is This?” with the passers-by. I try to imagine based on clothes and look who these people are. What do they do? Are they tourists? Are they bankers? Are they Jason Bourne and his latest exotic but kick-ass female companion on the run from international terrorists?

There were a great many beautiful, willowy Asian women, looking ageless and chic in their designer clothes and perfect matching bags. I felt old and dumpy and mortal by comparison. I found myself trying to look for flaws just to convince myself these lovely creatures were real. Finally found one. On the bottom of one perfect aubergine shoe was a price sticker. Ah HA! I feel better about myself and my old, but Italian, shoes.

There were harried businessmen, some sans jackets, talking on cell phones, yelling into cell phones, playing with cell phones. Hell, you’d think the cell phone was the same as a remote control in front of the television. There were moms herding children, groups of tourists chatting excitedly in languages I did not recognize. I pretended they were from Outer Moldavia, a small country in Europe which sits against the Carpathian Mountains next to Transylvania. Then again, they might have been from Sweden.

I saw a tiny cubbyhole of a sushi roll place that had a line out the door and down the block. The receptionist at the place I was interviewing told me the sushi place just opened a few weeks ago. She said it’s okay but not amazing. I think because it is wee and new and wee all the hipsters are flocking there for the sheer smugness of it.

On my walk back to the Ferry Building I saw a woman, eating a burrito and talking to herself. Nowadays you have to look to make sure she isn’t talking into a Bluetooth but her conversation was a bit into the “crazy, homeless lady or soon to be homeless lady” category. She was saying “Now you hush up because I’z da one that talks to the voices in my heads and not you and you shuts up you voices!” Wow, she told them!

Back at the Ferry Building, I found myself drawn to some of the best chocolate in the world, Recchiuti. To quote Yelper Irene C “This place makes Godiva look like it’s peddling poo… as in, obscenely expensive strawberries covered in poo.” Crude but true. This place is better than Vosges and they are my favs for gourmet chocolate. Tiny, wee bites of heaven these chocolate bits are. Expensive Heaven. It’s the Heaven where near perfect people who take care of lepers go, that Heaven. Heaven also comes with a price. A large price. Yeah, plan on paying about .80 – $1.00 for a piece of chocolate that can range from the size of a nickel to the size of a silver dollar. Everything is by weight. They have such lovely flavors like Lavender Vanilla or Rose Ginger or Lemon Verbena or Bergamot Tea. I am drooling just thinking of them and the $2.85 I spent on 3 wee pieces.

So that makes my grand total of money spent on this job trip $19.05. Oh, I forgot the Starbucks Grande Non-fat, no water, chai that I HAD to have because I did a good job in my interview. Do I count it if it was on a card? I guess I will since the card I used I paid for and wasn’t a gift. Oh, and I bought 2 rolls from Acme Bakery for dinner and breakfast tomorrow as well as an almond croissant. Don’t judge me.

Grand total for my job interview in The City – $30.65. ouch. Hell, just the $16.20 was pricey. I should learn. Every time I think I did a great job, I buy something to celebrate the soon to be happening job with its rain of cash and prizes and I always get the zonk. Every time. Next time I swear, no extras. Just my $16.20 of travel expenses and I can put a power bar in my purse.

Now to make things even better, I got a follow-up email for a job I applied for two weeks ago that I really want! Hopefully the Gods will smile and soon I will be back on the ferry and able to afford the trip. Who knows? I might be riding with the “Young Geeks In Love” again. (check my back blogs) I love people watching in San Francisco.

Proof That God Hates The New Tiki Room

January 12th, 2011, hot off the presses from Lake Buena Vista (aka Walt Disney World), a fire broke out in the attic area of the Enchanted Tiki Room attraction at 5:30pm. The sprinklers sprayed, the guests were evacuated, no one was injured, the firefighters doused the flames, big win all the way around.

So why is this a “Whack-A-Doodle Wednesday” story and why does God hate the Tiki Room? Because God loves me and understands, like I do, that the Tiki Room is an abomination that must be cleansed from the Earth.

Why the Tiki Room hate so early in the morning? I should clarify, this is the NEW Tiki Room. The original Enchanted Tiki Room in Disneyland is fine. No problems there. However in Florida, some whanker thought, “Hey! We can stuff Iago the obnoxious parrot from Aladdin into this attraction along with the more sedate (but unpopular) Zazu from The Lion King and rework it! It’s SYNERGY! They’re birds, right? This show is birds, right? BAM! We have synergy and product placement and it’s right by the new Aladdin’s Flying Carpet ride. See? We can sell a butt load of bird toys we wouldn’t be able to move other wise. See? It’s brilliant! Give me a raise!”

So they re-did the ride. The obnoxious Iago has taken over the Enchanted Tiki Room “Under New Management” with his wise cracking, Hollywood Agent manner with the staid Zazu to act as a foil. He also has the good sense, in an audio animatronic way, to look embarrassed.

I dislike this attraction and it’s not just because they raped a classic for potential stuffed animal profit. It’s because it was done so badly. Don’t take my word for it. Cory Doctorow from the blog BoingBoing agrees with me. In fact he says “I took my two-year-old daughter to the Tiki Room last week and within seconds, she was whimpering and saying, “These are the bad tikis. Don’t like them. Where are the real birds?”

That pretty much says it all. The show itself is not well done, the jokes aren’t funny and Iago is annoying and a bit scary. I know I’m not alone in wishing the place would dissolve on the spot. Well, God evidently heard our prayers. New rumors are surfacing that Iago was damaged beyond repair by the fire in addition to water damage on the perch that the birds are attached to. It seems Zazu sustained bad water damage as well. That seems to me, if the rumors are true, that the new birds were the target of this fire, Iago in particular.

No official determination on the fires origins have been made. However, I say “make lemonade out of nasty, feathery lemons” and make this attraction into something special. If you don’t want to go back to the original show, you can add new, original characters with a clever script. I call shenanigans on this whole “synergy” concept of plugging in minor characters just so you can sell plush toys and pencils that haven’t moved before. If you look at the Muppet 3D show at Disney Studios, you will see they invented a character named Bean the Bunny who is the catalyst of the whole show. He is cute, engaging, sells stuffed toys (Hell, I bought one!) and doesn’t take away from the whole classic Muppet experience. Do that people! Please let the idiot parrot remain fried and bring us a new character. I would like to suggest a stunning, peacock-blue parrot named Apollo.

Are You A Douche For “Writing In Public”?

One of my friends sent me this and I thought it was funny! I don’t watch “Family Guy” regularly but appreciate its scattered, satirical humor.

I suppose there are many reasons some of us write in public. For me it started at Whole Foods. This was because I had a stand-alone PC with a dial-up connection. My computer was slow and I never watched YouTube because it would take 45 minutes to load anything. Then my friend Rex gave me his old laptop and off I went. I could walk the three blocks to the cafe at Whole Foods and use their internet for two whole hours (before they cut you off). I wasn’t writing then, I was looking for jobs. I envied those people who looked so bohemian “working on their novels” or “writing their manifesto for the next great communist vegan revolution” but I had work to do. My job was finding a job. It still is.

I never did much writing in Starbucks because they didn’t have wi-fi (unless you paid for it) and I wasn’t “writing” yet. Now I write at Starbucks. Why? It’s local, it’s easy to get to, there is a fire station across the way and I can watch hunky firemen and policemen during the day. The police station isn’t too far and this Starbucks is in a “Nantucket-by-the-Bay” area and not a gang zone. I don’t even know if there ARE any Starbucks in Da Hood. It’s hard for me to picture “Lil Weaser” ordering a venti, double-shot, vanilla latte” with an extra pump.

So I write at Starbucks because of the scenery and because if I don’t get out of the house once in awhile my friends accuse me of being like Howard Hughes. No, I’m not afraid of people and germs, just poor. Now I write and I still look for jobs. How about the douches that DO “write in public?” I think they have a case of smug. It isn’t unique to Starbucks and laptops like the Family Guy clip shows. It always happens to people when there is something new. It happened with pagers. Remember pagers? People would even come up with cute codes to page each other. It was the forerunner of texting. People would haul them out all the time as if to say “Look at me! I am sooo important that my work gave me a pager! I am doing important things. I’m not talking to my blow dealer so leave me alone.”

It happened with car phones. Remember them? They were installed in the car. You couldn’t carry them around but you could TALK IN THE CAR! How did people know you were one of these smug people who could talk in their car? The car phone had what was called a pig’s tail antennae that was affixed to your trunk or the roof of your car. There were people who would buy fake antennae’s just so people would think they had a car phone. I’m sure that also contributed to their cars being broken into more frequently.

It happened with cell phones when they became portable and I’m sure it will happen with robot cyborgs as well. If a new gadget comes out that initially few people have, those few are attacked by a case of smug and have to show off to friends and strangers. They need to say “Look how important and well-off I am that I can have this new toy and you don’t.”

Honestly this goes back to childhood. I mean if you had the Barbie Dreamhouse with the elevator and the Corvette in the driveway, you needed to show it off to your other friends who were making do with empty shoe boxes as Barbie tenement housing. I’m sure little boys have their version of this but I didn’t have brothers so I wouldn’t know. The boys I knew seemed very attached to their immense collection of Match Box cars.

I should say if you want to visit a coffee place with a dearth of laptop writers, go to Peets. There is no writing at Peets. Why? From what I’ve observed, Peets is their own brand of smug. Don’t even think of walking into the patchouli, hippie mothership with their vegan pastries and their smug Prius driving crowd and order a Grande anything. Those hippies will kick you in the balls and toss you out on the street. They don’t take kindly to smug that is not their brand of smug. I suppose if you have a solar laptop you want to write on to craft your latest communist manifesto in the great vegan rebellion, they would be good with that. Otherwise, they will boot you in the junk.

I’m sure there are professional people who write at Starbucks but I think the smug level varies. I’m not sure if many screen writers write in Starbucks. Maybe unemployed ones. I know a few and they write in a writers room at the studio. When they aren’t on the lot, they are writing at home. Perhaps some of them go to a Starbucks but I never asked. It seemed rude. Playwrites always seem more tragic and poor and desperate than Hollywood screen writers. Visions of Tennessee Williams, and many others, wallowing in a sea of whisky while they bang out literary gold on an old Selectric comes to mind. I can picture them trying to quell the mad voices with the liquor. I know none of them saw a Starbucks. I have no idea what modern playwrites do. This might be a project for later. Much later.

So what am I doing today besides kick boxing in my living room and applying for jobs? I think I’ll go to Starbucks or what I call “The Fireman Store” due to the influx of hotties. Maybe I will get a call for a job, maybe not. Either way, I’m sure the view will be nice.

Can You Be My Pleasure Poodle If I Call You My Assistant?

It’s hard to find a job these days. I found this ad in Craig’s List. I found it creepy and very sad. Any comments in parenthases ( ) or brackets are mine.

Life manager/personal assistant needed for tech CEO (so far, so good you think)

Without going into too many details, I am recently divorced and I have a very complicated lifestyle that my wife used to help manage. Now that we are separated I am looking for someone to help me manage my two homes, airplanes, shopping, etc

I’m looking for someone that is 18+, preferably female, non-smoker, non-drug user, happy, well adjusted, that has a sense of adventure.

Responsibilities include:
Grocery Shopping (Just so it’s not confused with you shopping for shoes on my credit card)
Cooking periodically (the fact that you are advertising for an assistant and wanting her to cook for you is… creepy.)
Maintaining the two homes: Keeping them clean, functional (there again with the two homes)
Collecting mail from various properties
Helping me manage my cars, parking tickets, etc (Yeah, I had a spoiled boss who wanted me to pay his past due bills and tickets because he was too lazy to do it himself.)
Organizing my schedule
Help manage my airplanes and hanger (Again.. “See? I’m rich!”)
Occasionally driving me to meetings (You don’t know how to drive?)
Party planning (Really?)

Must be 18+ (That legal thing again)
Preferably female (That non-discrimination appearance thing)
No drugs, no smoking
Interest in business and technology (So you can tell me how brilliant I am)
Moderate cooking skills or the ability to locate a chef (and WHY am I cooking for you again?)
Comfortable keeping homes clean and maintained (You are this rich and you can’t afford a maid?)
Comfortable doing laundry (WHAT?! REALLY? Ummm, there is the Housekeeper/Maid thing again.)
Happy and well-adjusted person (I am always happy and well-adjusted cooking for my boss and washing his underwear. I’m passionate about that. Really, I am.)
Trustworthy (So you won’t rat me out to your friends)
Car and drivers license (Because I don’t drive)
Flexible schedule (So you can be at my beck and call day or night – mostly night)

Job perks include: Apple computer, cell phone, free travel when required, the ability to sit in an extra seat on my plane (if there is one) if you want to go on trips. The house in Tahoe is empty most of the time, so when you’re cleaning or arranging things there, you’ll have the home to yourself.

If you’re interested in applying for this job, please email a photo of yourself, your resume (if you have one), your location, information about your availability, and general background on yourself.

(So if I want this very professional job I need first and foremost to send a picture? A PICTURE? Because obviously if I am fat or old or ugly or all three, there is no way I can do this job. Resume I see is listed second and actually incidental since he doesn’t even assume I have one. I mean, he is just looking for a dumb bimbo to clean up after him, wash his clothes, cook his food and lick his willie. Why should I have a resume? I’m sure this will draw all manner of desperate females out of the woodwork. I can see where location, availability and background might be helpful in checking out your life and previous partners.)

Compensation: $30,000 year salary plus bonuses

(ARE YOU FRACKIN’ KIDDING ME?! All that and you only want to pay $30k a year! You either are going to get someone really naive and dim, desperate or too high on crack cocaine to care. But then, whoever you are – you are a douche so I guess you will deserve each other. Good luck on that ad!)

Spandex and Hedgehogs and Twilight Tattoos – O MY!

Well today for Whack-A-Doodle Wednesday, I plumb forgot. I’ve been so busy with writing Disney Guide books and trying to find work and keeping the kittah from driving me crazy, I lost track of the days. Then BAM! It’s Wednesday.

It appears that “Spandex”, “Twilight Tattoos” and for some unknown reason “hedgehogs” are really high in driving traffic to my site so I’m going to incorporate them all together. It will be an experiment, like that nasty (and now defunct) Fantasia Ice Cream from Disneyland.

I did a search on all three of these terms together and got… my blogs. So I searched on images of all three of these items and got…

Yeah – Mork and Mindy! I guess because Mork from Ork wears Spandex, they are standing next to a twilight background, Mindy has a secret tattoo and Robin Williams has so much body hair, he’s been mistaken for a hedgehog on occasion.

For you young’ins out there, this was a very popular prime time show before personal computers, cell phones, hand held gaming systems, the internet or anything cool. People thought it was funny. You can feel free to mock us now.

Now hedgehogs have nothing to do with spandex or Twilight. They are just cute. Very cute.

That is if you like a little prickly ball tottering around the house. Personally I find them TONS better looking than Edward or Jacob but that’s me. Some people even like hedgehogs on their cakes though this one kinda looks like road kill to me:

Spandex…. Let’s face it, unless you are a super hero, you shouldn’t be wearing this. In fact, even if you are a super hero, you shouldn’t be wearing this. It just makes you look like a douche.
Lesson One:

If you are going out in public to fight crime as “Toilet Paper Boy” or whatever stupid name you’ve invented for yourself, at least CHANGE YOUR SHOES!

Lesson Two:

Don’t EVER put this costume on outside of the Castro on a saturday night. Umm, yeah. Just don’t do it.

Lesson Three:

If you’re going for the soooo not correct Stripper Wonder Woman outfit, at LEAST have a place to put your Golden Lasso! I mean how else are you going to tie up guys and make them tell the truth?

Twilight Tattoos – The Worst of the Worse – (At least for this week)

OK, so someone thought it was a good idea to carve into their skin the image of two arms ripping through their flesh, holing an apple over a chess board… Oh, I see! The arms are each coming out of a logo from each of the books! The Apple is the first, the blood splashed tulip is the second, the red ribbon is the third over the Queen chess piece as the last! Ah, that makes it sooo much better! No it doesn’t. The art sucks. The idea sucks and the person who drew this sucks. The idea is moronic and the art is juvenile but then again you might have gotten this done during eighth grade detention (which is kind of like prison) so fine.

Here is my favorite:

You take up your WHOLE BACK to draw a diorama of some B list actors, who aren’t even very good, acting in a lame story about abusive relationships that you wish was real. Damn! Well, all I have to say is “Thank You!” Really! Thank you so much for showing me how great my life is by comparison. Hey, if you like the tat – fine though a little advice… Lay off the extra gallons of Coldstone Creamery. If you put on much more weight, you are going to stretch Edward, Jacob and Bella out and distort them. You really don’t want to wake up years later wondering why you got Delta Burke, John Candy and Divine tattooed on your back.

OK, that’s all I’ve got. Have a Happy Hump Day! I’m back to writing about The Mouse!

Expanding The Dream

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

I agree and wish people would actually do this in the year of our paranoia 2011. To me a perfect world would be one where we didn’t have “Black History Month” or “White History Month” or “Purple History Month” because you wouldn’t need them. How about you teach kids in school about people, all people? Great people and their achievements no matter what color their skin is, what sex they are, where they live, what language they speak or who they love? How about that?

It’s very simple. As long as you keep putting yourself or others into boxes, you set them apart as different. As “not the same as you” instead of putting everyone together and judging people on their actions alone. Wow, what a concept! So simple and one that continues to elude us.

Last night I was thinking about someone to use as an example especially in light of the hate rhetoric that’s been coming from the Westboro “Church”. Perhaps it’s also because I am deep into writing about Disneyland at the moment. Today I wanted to talk about Howard Ashman.

For those of us who are creatively inclined, who enjoy Disney movies from “The Little Mermaid” forward, who appreciate creative talent in general, we owe Howard Ashman a debt of gratitude. He and his musical partner Alan Menken changed the way the world sees Disney films. They helped raise the animation department from the dead. There are parents the world over who praise Disney films, especially ones such as “The Little Mermaid” and “Beauty and the Beast” as decent children’s fare and the Disney company as a bastion of “family values”. Some of these people, I’m sure, have very strong feelings about homosexuals. Many of those feelings are negative.

Guess what people? If it wasn’t for a gay man, namely Howard Ashman, you wouldn’t have those movies. He and Menken were hired by Disney to fix their upcoming projects. Hot off Broadway from their campy success of “Little Shop of Horrors”, it was Menken’s music and Ashman’s words that introduced the “Musical style” into Disney films. Honestly, have you READ The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Anderson? It’s DEPRESSING as are most of his stories. They were morality plays. In the story, the little mermaid, who is unable to kill the Prince in his sleep so she can become a mermaid again, allows him to live with his human Princess while she dies and becomes sea foam. She is taken pity on and allowed to be an angelic presence in the world due to her selfless act but still… yeah.

Beauty and the Beast? Have you read that story as well? Walt Disney had been wanting to animate this story for years and years but always hit the same wall. It’s boring. The main section of the book is “a story of two people eating dinner”. Yeah. Ashman and Menken transformed these stories. Howard’s drive and determination made these movies into gold. Beauty and the Beast is the only animated film ever to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Yes, a gay man. A homosexual gifted your children with beauty and grace and joy.

Howard Ashman died of AIDS in 1991. He never lived to see the finished film of Beauty and the Beast. He was shown a rough cut before he went blind. I was working at AIDS Project Los Angeles during that time. I can tell you, AIDS was very different then. You watched people you knew die around you all the time. You watched them grow splotchy lesions on their bodies, waste away to skeletons and die. The fine Disney studio contributed money. Under the table. In private. Like it was a dirty secret. A large percentage of Disney’s creative employees are gay. It wasn’t “fashionable” to support AIDS so much yet. Some people did. The brave ones. The ones who knew people, all people, need compassion. AIDS never cared what color your skin was. AIDS was an equal opportunity killer.

After Howard died and Beauty was nominated for Best Score and Best Song along with Best Picture. The studio didn’t want William Lauch, Howard’s longtime companion, to go to the podium with Menken to accept Howard’s Oscar if they won. God forbid the entire planet saw (a) the gay lover of a beloved creative genius there to accept an award on behalf of his partner, (b) see a gay man whose partner died of AIDS, and (c) put a public face on the contributions of gay people at Disney (the family studio) and a human face on the AIDS epidemic. Thank the Gods for Alan Menken who ignored this idiotic suggestion and made sure Lauch was on the podium as was his place. If he had been a woman accepting the award for her husband, no one would have cared. Thank the Gods there are still people in the World who are brave instead of hateful.

Some things have changed since then. People aren’t terrified of people with AIDS anymore. Not in the way it use to be when people wouldn’t even touch you or touch something you touched because they were terrified they would catch AIDS. Do you know they use to treat people with cancer that was as well? Well, as primitive, scared monkeys I suppose at least we are consistent.

Today we have a President in the White House who is part African American. Homosexuality is more accepted and main stream on television, in movies, in people’s lives. However there are still people who wouldn’t think twice of killing the President just because his skin is dark. There are still people who torture, murder and deny rights to people just because they love members of their own sex. There are still people who want to kill others because their religion is different from their own. There are still people who are the focus of violence and discrimination because they don’t have a penis. We have made many strides in fifty years. Will it take another fifty before we fail to see skin color, religious differences, gender or sexual orientation? Will it take that long before everyone has basic human rights and only your actions curtail your freedoms?

How long will it be before we are all judged not by the color of our skin, sex, nationality and religion but by the content of our character?

I Was Hit On By A Priest

and he was straight…. I think. This was a little disturbing in a weird Thorn Birds way and if you have never read that book or even watched the mini-series – SHAME ON YOU! I know all the gays have. Everyone wants a priest like Father Ralph…..

So here I am at Whole Foods, catching up on blogs, Facebook, and trying to forget the strange insurance cult interview I wasted my time at. This is what I get for having a dial up connection and not putting down money I don’t have to get Wi-Fi. I normally don’t have ten minutes to kill sitting around at home waiting to download a video of tap dancing dogs dressed as Elvis when I need to send resumes into the black hole of Hell. So here I am, looking for a respectable job, when a nice gentleman asks me if I want his extra coffee. I look up and … It’s a priest with a collar and everything! He tells me he was planning on meeting his fellow priest but unfortunately he had to bail at the last minute. (Important Priest things I’m sure. I fight the impulse to think of alter boys on summer vacation. I am soooooo going to Hell.)

I take the coffee, share my big table with the hot priest who also has a Mac only mine is bigger. I try not to stare. I wonder if he’s a serial killer just dressing like a priest to lure unsuspecting women to their deaths and keep their fingers in the freezer. I start going through all of the sins I’ve committed in the past 48 hours. Hell, the last few hours since I woke up. Gee, I’ve at least two things to confess since 6am. I wonder if it will help my chances if I make my confession really hot. I can supply video of my sins. On second thought that would look too desperate.

I go back to the serial killer theory. In the mean time the priest is just writing his sermon (or sicko stalker fantasies) on the other side of his laptop. I am so conflicted. I make small talk; “thanks for the coffee”, “how do you like your Mac?”, “A priest? Wow, that is an interesting career choice. Talk to God much?” I’m such a dork. I realize my Tinkerbelle shirt doesn’t help. Am I going to Hell? Hell, there is no Hell except the one you create but I was too muzzy from sleep to have a deep philosophical discussion.

Then the Priest thanks me for sharing my table, I thank him again for the coffee and he leaves. As he walks toward to rectory of the Catholic Church I realize I never even asked his name. I wonder, if he has impure thoughts whom does he confess to? Another Priest? Is there a chain of confession? Does the Pope hear confessions? Why can’t all the confession porn that is heard be enough to keep the celibate priests occupied and off of alter boys? Was Martin Luther correct when he said we don’t need intercession of priests between God and us because just by the very hearing our sins they are adding to the corruption of the Priesthood? I suppose the world will never know.

You Go Jerry!

Governor Brown has taken away State workers cell phones and I say about frackin time. Brown ordered Department heads to return half of the 96,000 State issued cell phones. Brown has turned his in as well. This will save the State $20 million a year. A drop in the bucket to our 25 BILLION dollar shortfall but it’s a pretty good drop and it’s a start.

In light of this, I thought I would remind people of one obvious thing that some seem to forget. Just remember people, money isn’t free. It doesn’t grow on trees and thinking otherwise is just deluding yourself. Sure, we all remember the boom. I was working at AOL and it was great! I loved working there! I mourn the loss of my lifestyle ever since everything went bust. I want my life back but guess what? If wishes were horses beggars would ride and I sure as hell don’t see a horse in my driveway. We all thought puppies and kittens were raining from the skies, the streets were paved with gold and all the toilets smelled like Christmas. I guess not so much anymore.

How does this relate to Jerry and the cell phones? As citizens we need to understand there is no free lunch. This situation has been coming on like a run away train for a LONG, LONG time. There are two ways we (the citizens) are directly responsible for this mess. First, for re-electing people who spend recklessly and waste our money. This isn’t all politicians. There are some good ones in there. I know, hard to believe but it’s true. The asshats? WE kept sending them back.

Secondly, WE voted on and passed so many Propositions that amended the way our money was spent so it gave lawmakers very little wiggle room. Sure, it looks good on paper. Yeah, I’ll vote for a tax that required that money to be spent for schools or parks or roads or whatever. Here is the problem. Those add up. The budget is a pie and right now the majority of that pie is already spoken for. Now everyone has to haggle over what’s left to try and balance a billion dollar plus budget shortfall. So where do you get the money? You can’t raise property taxes to current market levels because that’s locked down so I guess it’s increase school tuition or eliminate programs to help battered women or the blind. It sucks.

Here is the bottom line – MONEY ISN’T FREE! Remember that the next time you vote for something. Be proactive. There is a lot of fat that can be trimmed from government, SUPPORT the people that agree with this. The cell phones are a good start. Make an effort to be informed, to be involved and to let your representatives know what YOU want. They are working for you. Since we are all going to be taking big bites of the shit sandwich that is the California financial situation, make them earn their money.

Twilight: A Movie Observation

Due to popular demand and the fact that I am writing this week, I am posting some classic blogs. First up is my observation of the first Twilight movie and what I think of this piece of literary dreck.

Okay, let me just say that I’ve read three of the four angst filled vampire books that have been sweeping the nation. While I’ven’t read Breaking Dawn, of the first three books in the series, Twilight was the best. The others are even more confusing and angst filled if that is possible. Why am I going on about the book? Because I am going to compare the book and the movie. If you haven’t read the book – tough. Deal with it.

So the premise is that Bella Swan comes to a tiny Washington town called Forks. I pictured more tress but then I was also thinking that Forks was in Oregon for some reason so there ya go. Vampires should pick Oregon to hang out in because there are only 500 people living in the entire State. Anyway…

Her Dad is the head cop. I pictured their house a little more… rustic. Smaller, more cave like. I mean, we all know that men on their own, live like bears with furniture unless they are gay. Then they live like a spread from Architectural Digest.

So Bella goes to school and meets…. The Cullens. They are white. I don’t mean Caucasian, I mean WHITE like marble. They are beautiful, stuck up and odd in a … well, out of time way. You have Rosalie who is perfect. The blond ice bitch from hell that no one would ever have a chance with even if she wasn’t undead. There is her hulking jock boyfriend who has that striking jarhead look and has no neck. The best Cullen kid is Alice. Perky, quirky and totally cool. She’s dragging around a newly turned vampire who has this glazed look on his face. It’s the look most people get when they are in a room full of bloody steak and lamb chops and fois gras and have been forced to eat lettuce and tofu for the past year or 5. You think he’s going to take down the next student like a hunting lion. Oooooo, if you have ever seen Mike Judge’s new show The Goode Family about that whacky PC, vegan family – he looks like the perpetually starved “vegan dog”.

Now Bella and Edward, because let’s face it, these are the two everyone is gaga about. Ummmm, not pretty enough. I know, no one ever writes angsty books about romantic ugly people. It doesn’t happen. They are beautiful people that have a “fatal flaw”. Hers is that she’s clumsy (which I really didn’t see except her falling down once) and his is that he’s an undead bloodsucker. Not really anything to completely offset the fact that they are good looking. I just didn’t think the actors were as good looking as they are suppose to be.

I don’t know about you but Cedric Diggery just doesn’t get my heart going. He’s a good looking kid, don’t get me wrong. But he’sn’t heart stopping, head turning gorgeous. He doesn’t personify the kind of beauty that is only seen in the Angels and nasty dreams in your mind.

Bella, not so much. The dye job on her hair is a mess. My opinion is she needs a type of ethereal beauty to offset what a whiny, angsty, nutty, head case she’s. I would have just let the car hit her and be done with it. I would think a movie about Alice would be much more entertaining anyway.

I’ve heard that people think Edward is a stalker because he’s obsessed with Bellas scent and hangs outside her window for months watching her sleep. Let me explain something to you that only teen girls understand. This is romantic and cool and awesome. It’s warm and happy and safe until sex comes along and ruins everything. One of my friends once said the definition between a stalker and a romantic is whether you like him or not. If you dig him, it’s cool. If he’s a slimy troll, It’s creepy and gross. The problem is most guys don’t understand they are the slimy trolls. No really, you are. Only otherworldly beautiful guys full of mystery and intensity get to watch you sleep from your roof for 3 months. You? Nope, you are a creepy, slimy troll.

Let me also state for the record – Vampires… Don’t… Sparkle!!!! They don’t have skin like diamonds that scintillates in the sun. They are fabulous and gay like Lestat or are brooding & scary like Dracula or are punk & hot & scary like Keifer Sutherland. They Do Not SPARKLE!!!

Here is the basic plot line in a nutshell: Girl moves to small town, vampire likes girl, girl hates boy, girl is intrigued with boy and his mysterious eyes, boy saves girls life, girl obsesses about boy, girls father doesn’t approve of boy (but would rather she bone werewolf boy from the other side of the tracks), girl is happy, boy is happy, girl is in mortal peril as bad guys want to kill/eat her, chase ensues, much self blame is cast, much angst occurs, boy & girl end up together, bad guy plots revenge.

Not very original. It makes me want to hurl when some people who are either idiots or paid off say that the author is the most brilliant storyteller of our time! WTF??! No, not even close. I’ve hundreds of authors I can name that are better than her. She’sn’t fit to wipe the dirt from their shoes. Her writing it pedantic, the plotting is plodding and the angst of the characters only increases as the books continue.

The one good thing about the movie. It’s better than the book and as I said, Twilight has been the best book of the first three that I read. The movie is only a bit shy of 2 hours so you miss out on 6 additional hours of angst and plodding plot line. The movie does speed elements up though the alone time between Edward and Bella is boring as all hell unless you are 14 years old and a girl. If you are a boy and don’t think this is boring, I fear for you because no self respecting gay boy would find this interesting either.

Is this a great movie? No.. Is it a good movie? I’ll give it that on the condition you don’t pay more than $3 which leaves Netflix or a similar rental because movie prices will never be $3 again. If you have a spare hour and 53 minutes that you don’t mind tossing, go for it. I personally think It’s fine to watch while you are doing something else like beading or sewing or double clicking your mouse. Personally I think the best ending for this series would be “And then Buffy staked the whole Cullen family and we all lived happily ever after.”