Monday, August 27, 2012

Magic Button

My generation wasn't the first to play video games, but it was the first to have the opportunity to grow up with them. To have them in the home from toddlerhood or even infancy. To defeat the mighty Bowser before going up against Kindergarten bullies.

And sometimes I wonder if this all might have screwed us up... just a little. And by us, I mean me. Because sometimes I'll make a stupid mistake in life, and then sit there going, Why can't I just undo what I just did? Why isn't there a... a... a BUTTON?

I leave a plate of food on the table to go grab a napkin and the dog snarfs it up. I try getting a stain out of a shirt and I wind up rubbing a hole in it. I accidentally put an important paper in the shredder. I leave my coffee mug on the top of the car and drive off. It's things like that -- things that, if I had slowed down, thought my way through, and not been so impulsive or impatient, I might not have made the error.

And some errors are pretty permanent. Like shredding a really important paper by mistake. What if replacing it is going to be a huge hassle of time and money? Or the hole in the shirt. That's it, now you're doomed to always wear it underneath hoodies or cardigans. 

And all because life doesn't have an undo button. Or, rather, a redo button.

Hey, life, can I do that over? If I had a second chance, I wouldn't put the paper in the shredder without looking at it really closely. I wouldn't take my eyes off the road before I got near that intersection. I wouldn't daydream and walk into that pillar.

Or... maybe I still would anyway.

When mistakes are made, we have the chance to learn from them, but sometimes I think we don't even do it. You work on a mustard stain and think, Rub, rub, rub, gotta get this stain out! Brain says, "hey, remember last time when you rubbed a hole in that other shirt?" Well, that's not likely to happen AGAIN is it? That was just really cheap material or something! Rub, rub, rub... oh. Crap.

And you stare at the hole you've just made, mentally kicking yourself for making the same dumb mistake again. Wondering why life can't be like a video game, where you can reset the level or use one of your extra lives and make it all better. Where you can get into an epic battle and die... and pop back up a few seconds later. 

Alas, that's not reality. And it would do me well to remember that before I make another moronic move.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Movies That Exist

Hey everyone, please help me decide which of these films I should move to the top of my Netflix queue. I can't decide.

I loved watching Charlotte's Web as a kid! All that singing! Tralalalalalalala Zuckerman's famous pig, dee dum. I don't remember Wilbur's eyes being quite so blue, nor do I recall the baby spiders wearing drag queen wigs, but that's okay because this newest movie is sure to be full of fun, friendship, and adventure! Like, maybe that there lamb will get lost in the wilderness and Wilbur will rally everyone together to go out and rescue her! Or maybe the spiders will start a girl band! There are so many possibilities! I don't care what they do as long as there's singing and lots of it!

* * *

This is going to be great because what better way to snuff out Hannah Montana than by taking her aboard a boat on the high seas with some wizards? It's so perfect. They will be able to use their magical spells to dispose of Hannah FOREVER, and when anyone asks, they can say she fell overboard, and no one will ever know because the ocean is very large, you see! Yes. This will be most excellent.

* * *

Oh my gosh, you guys, I am dying to see this. Not only is it a sequel to the classic comedy of yesteryear ("You'll shoot your eye out, kid!" haha) but it features Daniel Stern, who, as we all know, was the voice of Older Kevin Arnold in The Wonder Years (nostalgia power!) AND one of the lovable, hapless burglars in Home Alone (Christmas power!)!! I know this will capture the spirit of the original... and holidays everywhere!

* * * 

It's always so sad when you think a character has learned her lesson in the first film only to find out that no, she hasn't, and, in fact, she's about to take her foolishness to a global level. Dear old Harriet, now a teenager, is going to get herself in hot water on the internet! Hilarious modern-days hi-jinks, get ready to ensue!

* * *

No! Tell me the Plastics are not back! I was sure Lindsay Lohan ran them over with her car! Oh well. I just hope that blonde girl in the front is capable of vanquishing the Plastics for good this time because ughhhh I hate those Plastics SO MUCH.

* * *

Wait, wait, wait... that's all I ever do anymore, it seems. First I had to wait four years for the Batman sequel, and now I have to wait until SEPTEMBER 18TH to experience this sequel, and I can't stand it. Why can't Disney just beam the movie straight into my brain? I wouldn't be able to pirate it. I would just be able to love it. Now excuse me while I go design a 28-day pop-up advent-type calendar to make the anticipation less excruciating.

* * *

I still remember where I was the first time I learned about this film. It was a Tuesday. The weather had grown cold. I was wearing my puffy purple jacket, jeans, and my orange sneakers. The DVD caught my eye in one of the store aisles and I immediately took a step back because dang was the man on that cover ugly! Which is not to say ugly men can not be actors (they, in fact, can) but typically they don't get to be on the cover of the DVD box. I mean, that's pretty rare. So instead of shelling out the dough for this at the time (as I should have) I went home and looked the movie up on the internet. And GET THIS: that ugly guy? NOT A GUY. IT'S A LADY! IT'S THAT BLONDE LADY FROM THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BOX IN DISGUISE!!! I could not believe it. I went back to the store to buy the DVD, because I just had to see this hilarity, but the DVD was GONE! Now every time I go to the store I look for it, but alas, it is never there. My one true chance at happiness, and I blew it.

* * * 

So now it is time to choose one of these films to earn the coveted #1 spot on my Netflix queue! There can be only one. So... I leave it to you, my noble and worthy friends, to decide! Help me rent happiness!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Crazy California Road Trip: Day 9

Quick Links: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5, Day 6, Day 7, Day 8, Day 9

Day 9
Crescent City, California to Cave Junction, Oregon
53 miles
Cave Junction to Portland
277 miles

And so, like all things, it must come to an end.

But first -- antiquing! 

I hit up two shops while Jenny takes the kids to the park (same one as last night.)

While they have their fun, I have my own, snatching up 16 old photographs, a Scrooge McDuck glass, 4 books, and a Webbigail toy.

Then it's off to Cave Junction, where we're meeting Chris (Jenny's husband) and their older children for lunch, before the six of them depart for another adventure. My mom has come along for the ride (and to accompany me on the journey back north.)

The two halves of the S. family haven't seen each other in over a week, and it is a happy reunion indeed.

 Lunch at a cafe, where everyone talks a mile a minute, filling the various relations in on all the things that have happened in the past eight days (if that's even possible).

And then, we depart, parting ways.

It's been quite an adventure.

And now...

I rest.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Crazy California Road Trip: Day 8

Day 8
Ukiah to Crescent City, California
241+ miles

A continental breakfast...

...and then we're on the road.

Today is a day of many trees...

Founders Tree... Chimney Tree... Grandfather Tree... Grandmother Willow....

Okay, maybe not her. But about 752,000 of her distant cousins.

And then there was the time we drove through a tree....

And explored a hollow fallen tree....

And climbed inside a living, standing hollow tree....

So, basically, TREES.


Grant: "I can't believe that tree was as old as Jesus!"

 Besides tree-seeing, we do lots of singing in the car. There's This Land Is Your Land on the trek through the forest.... Queen songs during a traffic jam.... and a Beauty and the Beast medley, provided by myself, in which a stuffed dog takes the role of Belle and a water bottle stands in for Gaston. 

(I think I  may have frightened the children.)

We make it to our hotel in Crescent City, California.

Subway for dinner.

Playtime in a park...

Cuckoo birds!

Then, a walk to -- and on -- the beach.



As the sun slinks lower in the sky, we head for our hotel for some Sporcle, Antiques Roadshow, Scrabble, and sleep.

Oregon calls. Tomorrow we'll make our approach.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Crazy California Road Trip: Day 7

Day 7
San Jose to Ukiah, Ca, via Half Moon Bay
179 miles

10am: Back on the road again....

We drive to Half Moon Bay, a small, cute town. First stop, the beach.

It's a bit of a walk, but a nice one.

The kids frolic in the waves.

(Okay, I do, too.)

I find some cool rocks. Later, I will study them.

We drive to a park for a picnic lunch.

Mmm, California strawberries!

Next we go to a farmer's market. Nearby they've set up a bouncy house and the kids go for a boing.

After a day of beaches, playgrounds, and bouncing, the kids' energy is slightly diminished.

There's an antique shop up the road. 

We check it out.



It's like that lady's garden in Harriet The Spy. 

Kitteh! She let me pet her:)

Later, some more excitement as we cross the Golden Gate bridge and I hum the Full House theme.

 We stop at Denny's (again!) for dinner.

 Another hour's drive and we're at our new motel. We swim, watch part of the Olympics closing ceremonies, and hit the sack. Tomorrow, we plan to drive through a tree! Wish us luck!