September 30, 2008


For the next couple of days, pippa.

Talk to you soon.

September 28, 2008

-image-is this really the person you want to be?

From a recent email:

“So I saw your post. But then you have to have a password to get into it. Do you have the picture or not?”

Oh, I have “the picture,” Peaches. Just not for you. Boo-bye.

Sighhhh ……

September 27, 2008

-image-r.i.p. paul newman




Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

September 26, 2008

-image-we interrupt this rampant cheeriness …..

…. to bring you “A Few Things Tracey Loves From Trader Joe’s.”

Proving, once again, that Trader Joe’s is the best grocery store ever. This in no way covers everything I love from Trader Joe’s. Just a few little things.

~ Trader Joe’s Just Grilled Chicken Strips. In the frozen section. Easy-peasy and yummy. For when you’re in a hurry. Or lazy. Which, to clarify, I never am.

~ Trader Joe’s Greek Style Yogurt, especially this Honey flavor. I’m eating it right now. I’m so glad you can’t see me because, in mere seconds, I plan on shoving my face into this-here container and licking out every little bit that’s left, thankyouverymuch. And if I were a skunk, this would kill me. (Well, no. I guess that’s only true with those narrow yogurt cups. So you’re safe shoving your snout into a Trader’s Joe’s Honey Yogurt, Pepe Le Pew! Woo hoo!)

~ Trader Joe’s Half ‘n’ Half. Good and cheap. We don’t need a picture, do we? It’s half ‘n’ half, for Petesake. It just makes me happy. The container is purple and white and looks kinda purty in my fridge. It’s the little things.

~ Trader Joe’s Peppermint Jo-Jos. These are a seasonal item only, but coming soon, pippa! They’re like Oreos — with crushed candy canes in the filling. (This is not what they look like out of the box — they don’t have the crushed candy cane on the top. Just a picture I found of what one mom did to her Jo-Jos when she had to bring cookies to school and wanted them to look more homemade. Good for you, mom.) These are so so good and Trader Joe’s sells out of them fast. It seems to me that whenever I shop there around the holidays, every basket or cart in line has a box of Jo-Jo’s in it. It makes me happy — it’s like a box of Jo-Jo’s is a box of joy. Sometimes a cookie isn’t just a cookie, you know. Luckily, I know the manager of my TJ’s — because she used to come to The Beanhouse every day and TJ’s was right across the street — and if I ask, she puts a box on hold for me. She makes sure I get my joy. Isn’t that nice?

~ Trader Joe’s Dried Mango Slices. I think we’ve discussed these before. I don’t want to even post a picture — it’s too much temptation. And I don’t buy them often because I become too easily obsessed with them. They are sirens singing to me from the deadly rocks. You’ve been warned.

~ Arabian Joe’s Middle Eastern Flatbread. I don’t know if the name is racist or not. But when you schmear some hummus or cream cheese on a slice and bite into its soft, chewy, almost nondescript perfection, you just won’t care.

~ By the way — and if you shop at TJ’s, you already know this — they frequently name their products like that. Middle Eastern Flatbread? Oh, that’s Arabian Joe’s Middle Eastern Flatbread, duh. Or whatever “duh” is in Arabic or Farsi or Urdu. Why, even now, in my cupboard, I have a jar of Trader Giotto’s Tuscan Marinara Sauce. So products have these regionally appropriate or possibly racist names: Trader Guiseppe’s. Trader Jose’s. Trader Yosef’s Technicolor Dreamcoat, etc. That’s just how they roll at Trader Joe’s.

~ Trader Joe’s Pinachios. This name vexes me. I don’t get it. I couldn’t find a picture of these. They are cookies — yes, again, with the cookies. I bought these for the first time yesterday because the taste-test dude passing them out forced them on me. Yes, forced. That’s what I said. I don’t really want to describe the whole ugly fracas, really. Just suffice to say that I lived to eat cookies again. Specifically, these …. these … Pinachios. They’re a butter creme cookie with white chocolate chips and pieces of pistachio, a delicious, coffee-dunkin’ combo of crunchy and chewy and mmmmm. I have no idea why they’re called Pinachios or the reason for the “n” in the name. Someone explain it to me. I mean, I get the whole reference to pistachios, but, Trader Joe’s, what’s with the “n”? You’re usually so clever with names, but this one? No. No. I think you’ve been smoking a little too much Trader Spicoli’s Cannabis. A cookie so delicious needs a much better name. Pinachios. Pinocchio. Pinochle. Come on, ya doobie smokers.

~ Hm. Well. Okay. This post slipped away from me a wee bit. Which is completely unprecedented.

Uhm. So. Shop at Trader Joe’s.


September 25, 2008

-image-30 years ago today: psa 182

I still remember being able to see the billowing black smoke all the way from our house — 20 miles east of the crash. Now I live only a few miles away from where the crash happened and always feel uncomfortable if I’m near that area. I know people who saw the flash of the collision as it happened mid-air. I know people who say that area is haunted — who’ve seen weird things at night there. For anyone living in SD at the time, this is a story that seeped into your consciousness. It’s just there and you can’t make it go away — that weird power of shared but clouded memory, the myth and lore that build up around it.

You know, based on where they crashed, I’d say both planes were less than two minutes from landing safely at Lindbergh Field. They crashed in less than 20 seconds. They were that close to the ground.

So sad. So unnecessary.

(Disturbing photo in the link. Be forewarned.)

September 24, 2008

-image-i adore marisa

Every once in a while, someone says exactly what you’re thinking on the exact day you’re thinking it.

-image-had to do it

The post I wrote recently about a certain little relative of mine meeting a certain nominee for the Vice President of United States whose child just happens to possess the same disability as my little relative — how’s that for deliberately convoluted?? — is now password protected.

It was bound to happen. When I first posted it, oh, two weeks ago, I had not the slightest inkling that anyone beyond my regular readers would find it interesting. Really. I asked permission to post it from the only relatives who know about this blog (and who no longer read, btw, through mutual agreement, for those of you who know what I’m talking about here). I thought it was worth posting, but I did not in any way imagine it would get, like, a jillion hits in just a couple days. It literally FREAKED me out because privacy is an issue for me here. I have what I would call a modest following here at Thee Olde Pale and I’m okay with that for a variety of reasons. So I debated taking the post down — basically instantly — but my relatives were happy to have the story out. Thanked me, even, because they thought it was important. I don’t think I deserve that kind of credit or thanks, really. I was torn, but left it up for a while. After a couple of days, though, I shut the comments down. Stuff like that can really bring out the abusive cynical jerks and it began to feel like managing and/or deleting their offensive comments was becoming a full-time job. In the last few days, I’ve noticed that people have accessed the post through email — meaning the link is now being emailed all over the place, I guess. Gulp. Scary for me. Who knows whose email inbox it could end up in? I’ve done all the blocks I can think of on people who personally know me, so hopefully, I’m safe there. But there are always variables to fret about.

I shouldn’t have posted it, probably, but it was a spontaneous emotional decision. I’m happy people are moved by it; on the other hand, it’s risky for me. And not in some grand heroic way — please, not that at all — but in an impulsive, careless way.

So, if you want to read that post, email me for the password. And please be polite in doing so. I’ve had some wankers email me whining about having to ask for a password. That doesn’t exactly bewitch me, people. I refuse to give passwords to Rudy Rudesters. There’s been open access o’plenty for the past two weeks — and other, much larger blogs have posted the story, too — but now I need to clamp down a bit. If you’re new to the blog, just trust me when I say I have good reasons. I wasn’t wise with this whole thing. I admit it. Lesson learned.

I hope.

September 23, 2008

-image-i steal because i love

From Sheila — although without all the cool pictures and clips she put in hers because I am a sloth and a slug.

All righty. A movie questionnaire. I’m sure you’re all positively twitterpated to hear my answers, so keep your smelling salts handy, Pittypat.

1) Your favorite musical moment in a movie: Now, see, when I first read this, I instantly went to the kabillion movie musical scenes stored in my head, but that’s not what the question’s asking, is it? “Favorite Musical Moment in a Movie.” Okay. I’m not going with “favorite”; I’m going with “Moments I Like Off The Top O’ My Li’l Head.” Judy Garland singing “The Man That Got Away” in A Star is Born. (Although I guess that’s sort of considered a musical. Drat.) How ’bout Michelle Pfeiffer, “Makin’ Whoopie,” in The Fabulous Baker Boys? Drop-dead sexy. How ’bout Rocky on the steps of the museum? I mean, we’ve got yer heartbreak, yer sexy, yer soaring. What else ya want??

Moving on.

2) Ray Milland or Dana Andrews: Ray Milland.

3) Favorite Sidney Lumet movie: The Verdict.

4) Biggest surprise of the just-past summer movie season: I don’t know if it’s a surprise, per se, but Iron Man was pretty darn great. And Tropic Thunder was raunchy, and God help me, I could NOT stop laughing. MB went into the wild ugly cackle more than once. It was awesome. The movie, the wild ugly cackle. Besides, I am forever and always on the sidelines, rooting for Robert Downey, Jr.

5) Gene Tierney or Rita Hayworth: Rita Hayworth!

6) What’s the last movie you saw on DVD? In theaters?: Moliere and Burn After Reading.

7) Irwin Allen’s finest hour?: Poseidon Adventure, I guess.

8) What were the films where you would rather see the movie promised by the poster than the one that was actually made?

Hm. Well, this could be one:
I actually like this poster, the asymmetry, the color, the isolation. And yet there aren’t enough words to express my loathing of the actual movie.

9) Chow Yun-Fat or Tony Leung: Chow Yun-Fat

10) Most pretentious movie ever: Uhm, MB has told me that I can’t give my real answer without losing all credibility as a human being. Really, as if I had any. But now I’m skerred, soooo …. my pinch-hit answer is ….. Koyaanisqatsi. And by extension, any and all other members of the qatsi family. Chant it with me now: Koy-aaaaaan-is-qatseeee, Koy-aaaaaaan-is-qatseeee. Shut up, Philip Glass.

11) Favorite Russ Meyer movie: I’ve managed to miss them all.

12) Name the movie that you feel best reflects yourself, a movie you would recommend to an acquaintance that most accurately says, “This is me.”: I have to say I haven’t found one yet. It kind of makes me sad.

13) Marlene Dietrich or Greta Garbo: Greta Garbo, actually.

14) Best movie snack? Most vile movie snack?: Best: Red Vines or popcorn with Hot Tamales. Most vile? Nachos or popcorn with too much greasy movie butter. Ugh. I won’t eat it.

15) Current movie star who would be most comfortable in the classic Hollywood studio system: Oh, I don’t know. Aren’t we supposed to say George Clooney?

16) Fitzcarraldo—yes or no? Yes. I love Werner Herzog.

17) Your assignment is to book the ultimate triple bill to inaugurate your own revival theater. What three movies will we see on opening night?: “Ultimate triple bill”? Pressure. How ’bout just “a triple bill I would enjoy and others could watch it too and if they didn’t like it, they could lump it and, hey, no refunds, you SAW what the bill was, Peaches”? Sounds good to me. So, uhm, Singin in the Rain, Centerstage — deal with it — and, ohh, The Fabulous Baker Boys. Somethin’ for everyone in that one. YUM.

18) What’s the name of your theater? (The all-time greatest answer to this question was once provided by Larry Aydlette, whose repertory cinema, the Demarest, is, I hope, still packing them in…): Well, sheesh, now I have performance anxiety about my answer. Thanks. I only hope The Demarest is kicking as much bottom as my theater, The Peachy, would be. Complete with cappuccinos, etc., made by moi. Hey, I was gonna say “The Slappy,” but doesn’t that sound a tad naughty? Thought so.

19) Favorite Leo McCarey movie: An Affair to Remember

20) Most impressive debut performance by an actor/actress: Most impressive? Gah. There’s so many. So I’m gonna go with the first one that comes to mind right now. I will never ever forget Reese Witherspoon as Dani in The Man in the Moon. Heartbreaking.

21) Biggest disappointment of the just-past summer movie season: It pains me to say it but The Dark Knight

22) Michelle Yeoh or Maggie Cheung: Michelle Yeoh. Because I don’t think I’m familiar with Maggie Cheung, quite frankly.

23) 2008 inductee into the Academy of the Overrated: Al Pacino. Lately. Okay. Like the last 20 years. Please be good again, Al Pacino. Also Don Cheadle is beginning to wear on me. Starting to seem smug or sanctimonious in his movies. I know he’s getting lauded for Traitor, but what a snooooooze. Ugh. Enough Don Cheadle. Lighten up. Chill. Take an enema. Gah.

24) 2008 inductee into the Academy of the Underrated: Don’t laugh. Okay. Go ahead and laugh. I mean, it’s not like I can see you. Or so you think, anyway. But Bruce Willis. Yes, Bruce Willis is my answer. Because I think he’s great at the macho kick-ass characters he frequently plays. Because I pined for him as sexy, wise-cracking David Addison in Moonlightling. Because I loved the quiet cerebral pain of his character in The Sixth Sense. And because I think there’s more to him. Not that all that isn’t enough. But there’s diversity there. Layers. Depth. I guess I just want him to be cast in that one role, that one role that will prove I’m right, basically. (See how I can make anything be about me?) I want him to have that perfect part that elevates him, once and for all, above all the knee-jerk associations people have with him.

25) Fritz the Cat—yes or no?: No. I prefer Felix, thank you.

26) Trevor Howard or Richard Todd: I have no preference.

27) Antonioni once said, “I began taking liberties a long time ago; now it is standard practice for most directors to ignore the rules.” What filmmaker working today most fruitfully ignores the rules? What does ignoring the rules of cinema mean in 2008?: Oh, dear. Paul Thomas Anderson seems like a good answer. (I loved his lesser-known Hard Eight about 10 years ago. Philip Baker Hall!)

28) Favorite William Castle movie: Since I think the only one I’ve seen is The House on Haunted Hill, so let’s go with that, shall we?

29) Favorite ethnographically oriented movie: Uh, speaking of pretentious ….. Couldn’t you say virtually every movie is “ethnographically oriented”? Dealing with “human social phenomena”? Whatevs. Okay. The Gods Must Be Crazy. Okay. Schindler’s List. Okay. Clerks. Sheesh.

30) What’s the movie coming up in 2008 you’re most looking forward to? Why?: Well, it’s slated for 2009, but it’s currently on hold. Still, the possibility of a movie version of Life of Pi fills me with both butterflies and dread. I wouldn’t be able not to go, but I’d be biting my nails about how it could actually be pulled off. Then again, I would have to know. Satisfy my curiosity in perhaps ruinous fashion. I love Life of Pi. Love it. One of my favorite books of recent memory, actually. But … but …. how do you handle Richard Parker?? Without giving anything away here for those who haven’t read it, what about Richard Parker?? And the ending?? How how howie-how-how??

30b) Added by moi. Most pretentious answer you’ve given in this questionnaire: “How how howie-how-how??”

31) What deceased director would you want to resurrect in order that she/he might make one more film? : Oh, I’m in a Frank Capra mood. I need a Frank Capra movie right now.

32) What director would you like to see, if not literally entombed, then at least go silent creatively?: Oliver Stone hasn’t done anything I’ve liked in a long long time.

33) Your first movie star crush: Harrison Ford, Star Wars. Every girl in the world had a crush on him. That poor Mark Hamill. I don’t know any girl who crushed on him. Ever.

-image-butt shame

“Butt Shame,” as referenced far too often between MB and me, refers to the tendency for so many women to tie sweatshirts and hoodies and various other lengths of cloth around their hips to cover their butts. You know, just to get you up to speed on the nature of our in-depth marital conversations. I myself have a couple of Butt Shame Hoodies in rotation at all times. And it doesn’t matter how acceptable-to-even-saucy your butt may actually look; it’s your personal unwavering butt perception that requires you to maintain a Butt Shame Hoodie wardrobe.

And again, this weekend, the topic of Butt Shame reared its ugly … well, not head, I guess. Bottom? Patootie? Reeear? Whatevs. But as we sat in the car at a stoplight and watched a very large man in too-short shorts cross the street in front of us, I said, “You know, it’s finally dawning on me that way too many women have butt shame and waaay too few men do.”

September 22, 2008

-image-i stole this

From Cara: The Sarah Palin Name Generator.

I am Tarp Laser Palin. And, you know, I’m very pleased with the Laser part; less so with Tarp. Ah well.

Still, I do believe the overall effect is rather kick-bottom. And nothing is more kick-bottom than saying “kick-bottom” as we all know.

I am Tarp Laser Palin. Fear me. I will cover you with a tarp and shoot you with lasers.

Okay. So I’m a serial killer. Seriously, fear me.

What’s your Sarah Palin Name?

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