Saturday, November 29, 2008
My thanksgiving encompassed seeing the movie Australia with the lovely Hope Tarr. This epic movie stars Hugh Jackman (sigh!), the sexiest man alive 2008, and Nicole Kidman. The description of the movie from Yahoo!:
"In Australia, on the brink of World War II, an English aristocrat travels to the faraway continent, where she meets a rough-hewn local and reluctantly agrees to join forces with him to save the land she inherited. Together, they embark upon a transforming journey across hundreds of miles of the world's most beautiful yet unforgiving terrain, only to still face the bombing of the city of Darwin by the Japanese forces that attacked Pearl Harbor. "
Sounds exciting doesn't it? And it was, up to a point. I'm not a huge Nicole Kidman fan, and she was working my last nerve in the beginning of the movie. I felt that she was overplaying just a little bit the whole "grand lady of the manor." But Hugh Jackman? Mamma Mia, is he hot in this movie or what? Just thinking about the scene where he's soaping up and washing himself off in the outback is enough to make me sweat. I have to admit that there was a good chemistry between the two of them, and I found the love story believable. Of course, Nicole Kidman's character, Lady Ashley has to spoil it by giving Hugh Jackman's character The Drover, a stupid ultimatum.
The movie is a strange hybrid of epic love story, war picture, and drama about what happened to the aborigines during this time period. At times, it didn't quite jibe. The young boy who plays Nullah, the half-caste child, is absolutely adorable and the movie is narrated by him. You really feel for what he's going through, and how hard it must have been to feel like you have no place in your own country. Watching the movie and seeing how all the aboriginal children who were what they derisively called "creamy" being removed from their families to as one gentleman put "to breed the black out of them" was heartbreaking. And the end note about how the Australian government only just apologized this year for a policy they pursued up until 1973, well it just doesn't cut it. By the way, as the American government ever apologized to the American Indians for stealing their land or for slavery? Just a thought.
Hugh Jackman is so wonderful in this film that I feel that producers should be whipping up romantic comedies for him. In fact I have a plot for one. It would star Hugh Jackman and basically any actress who is not Renee Zwellweger, Nicole Kidman, or Hilary Swank. Ideally it would star Julia Roberts or Sandra Bullock. Better yet, make her Tina Fey! Hugh would play an Australian newspaper tycoon like Rupert Murdoch but younger and sexier. Tina Fey would play the owner of a newspaper like the Wall Street Journal that has been in her family for generations. Her crazy relatives who also co-own the newspaper are a motley crew of hippies, greedy yuppies, and other assorted eccentrics. They are eager to sell the paper to Hugh, but Tina still has a significant number of shares that he needs to truly own the paper. So he decides to woo her into selling to him.
Meanwhile she has a fiancee, the Bellamy of the picture (The Bellamy is named after actor Ralph Bellamy who played this character in an assortment of 1930's rom-com's like His Girl Friday and the Awful Truth. He's the good guy, but just a little dull. He's the editor of the paper. Hugh has a secret weapon to neutralize him though, Lucy Liu as his sexy but vicious forensic accountant, who is also his girlfriend. I see the Bellamy as played by Peter Hermann or Patrick Dempsey. Tina, of course, doesn't automatically succumb to Hugh's charms, particularly since he owns tabloids like the Sun where there's a topless girl on Page 3. She's worried that he's going to do that to her respectable paper.
There has to be moment where Hugh shows his vulnerable side to make Tina soften towards him. Perhaps she accompanies him to his remote outback ranch in Australia and sees another side of him. Perhaps he has a mother who treats him like less than his older brother who died in an unfortunate kangaroo accident.
See where I'm going with this? More romantic comedies with Hugh Jackman where he takes shirt off in every other scene, and perhaps gets to sing a tune or two.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
As I write this, reenactors are busily commerating that glorious day downtown in the rain and the cold. Well, better them than me! Apparently back in the day, men used to climb a greased flagpole to hoist the Stars and Stripes to celebrate.
However, it did get me thinking that we need some good American Revolution historical novels on the shelves. Picture it, star-crossed lovers, she's a loyalist, he's a revolutionary, trying to find their way to each other. Or a young woman, who doesn't want to be apart from her beau, so she disguises herself as a boy, to try and find him by joining up with one of the regiments (hey there were plenty of women who did just that). Or a Scarlet Pimpernelesque story set in New York while the British were occupying the city. Or the aftermath of the war, where the scarred and embittered battle veteran comes home to his woman, suffering post traumatic stress disorder while she's been holding down the family estates.
There are so many options. I say we need more historical romances set in this country, celebrating our own history.
Excuse me, while I go hoist a glass to our liberation.
Monday, November 24, 2008
And John Tuturro! Star of Barton Fink and The Big Lebowski. I almost went over to him and told him how my ex-sweetie pie looks like him and they both played Herb Stempel, Tuturro in Quiz Show, and ex-sweetie pie on stage in LA in Night and Her Stars! But I refrained. Plus ex-sweetie pie would have killed me if he knew that I'd done that.
There was some talk about doings at Philoctetes Paris, and someone who wants to open Philoctetes Berlin, but I'm thinking Philoctetes London! Seriously, I know tons of theater folk and one actual psychotherapist. If I won the lottery, I would totally want to be the one to run that.
That night, I met up with Liz Maverick, Marianne Mancusi, Leanna Renee Heiber, Hope Tarr and Megan Frampton for a Dances of Vice party at the beautiful Montauk Club in Park Slope, my dream neighborhood in Brooklyn. You can see some of the lovely photos on Megan and Liz's site. I met up with Hope on the no. 4 subway platform to Brooklyn, and we made our way to the club. However, we got a bit discombobulated coming out of the train and we dashed into a liquor store to get our bearings where we had samples of Thai rum laced with apple juice. Just the thing on a cold winter's night!
We finally made our way to the Montauk Club where we met up with everybody. I had sent out an email weeks ago about the event, and no one jumped on the idea, until this past week and then all of a sudden we all decided to go. I wore an evening gown I've had for a long time which is beautiful but has no sleeves. The Montauk Club is beautiful, it reminded me very much of the Players Club, which is a private club in Manhattan, founded by Edwin Booth. I'm dying to join, if only for the all you can drink champagne brunch buffet for $20.
The others went off to go dancing and Hope and I stayed until the bitter end before taking the train back to the city. I confess I ran into Mickey D's for some fries when I got home to go along with my mini veggie burger that I had left over from my dinner. After taking off my make-up, I finally put my head down on the pillow and went to sleep.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Seriously people, why do celebrities do this? Why name your child after a borough? And since Pete Wentz is from Chicago, couldn't they have named him Lincoln or Wrigley or something else? Heck, they could have named him Barack Obama Wentz and it would have made more sense to me.
I know, I know that Posh and Becks named their oldest son Brooklyn, but at least you can shorten the name to Brook or Brooks for a nickname. What are they going to call little Bronx? Bro? And Mowgli? Isn't that the name of the kid in the Jungle Book stories?
Rudyard Kipling and Disney have a lot to answer for.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Is this week over yet? Seriously it feels like it's been going on forever. I have so much stuff to watch on my DVR, it's not even funny. Top Model, Top Chef, Monarchy, Real Housewives of Atlanta are all waiting for me as we speak. I'm also pretty broke until my next pay day, so I'm hoping that I can convince some guys on Saturday night to buy me some drinks at the Dances of Vice party I'm going to.
I went to see Frank Langella in A Man for all Seasons last night at the Roundabout and now I'm bummed out this morning because I found out I could have saved $30 on my subscrption since JPMorgan has a deal. I'm wondering if I could get that retroactive. Oh, and how was the play? Well it was a lot of talking, and talking, and talking. And the theater was freezing. It's not good when you have to keep your coat on during the performance. I shouldn't have had that Henry VIII drink during the intermission because it made me sleepy. I will however say that Mr. Langella didn't disappoint on the acting front.
But there was something that bothered me. I ran into an someone who I had invited to my birthday party a week ago. She's not really a close friend, she's more like an acquaintance. We worked together at my night job, and we've seen each other at parties over the years (she's a good friend of a friend of mine). So last night, during the intermission I went to get my drink, and she and her friend stood right next to me at the bar and proceeded to chat away and ignore me. Now fine, I get that she wanted to chat with her friend, but don't stand right next to me, and not include me in the conversation. Go stand somewhere else. I thought that was totally rude and uncalled for, since I had made a point of going over and chatting with them while they were waiting on line.
Am I crazy that I thought that was rude?
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
To keep them occupied, I took out the first season of 30 Rock from the library and sat them down in front of the TV set the past two days. I thought if Tina Fey can't make them laugh, I'm out of luck. They're already eating everything in sight, including a huge bag of soft baked Pepperidge Farm cookies. Fortunately, they've been riveted by the show. I sat down with them, just to get them to stop fighting amongst themselves, and I have to say that I'm really enjoying it. How have I missed this delightful show?
For anyone who has been under a rock, 30 Rock is the fictitious goings on behind a TV show sort of like Saturday Night Live called The Girlie Show that Tina Fey as Liz Lemon serves as the headwriter. The writers are a motley crew of guys with one lone woman who seems not to have a name. Tracy Matthews plays Tracy Jordan the Martin Lawrence/Eddie Murphyesque star of the show and Jane Krawkowski plays the female star who gets pushed aside when Tracy joins the show. But what I'm intrigued by is Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy head of primetime and microwave programming. He's hilarious, the episode where he was dating Condoleeza Rice (although they never said her name) was too funny.
The show is not bust a gut funny, but it is so enjoyable because the laughs come from the situations and the characters. As the show continues and the characters become more familiar, the funnier the show gets from Liz dating Dennis, the only guy still selling beepers in New York, to the hot guy at MSNBC who turns out to be her cousin. Even Jenna has become more than just a blonde bimbo.
So, the PMS Dwarves and I will be spending the rest of the week, ensconced in front of the boob tube, finishing out the rest of the 24 episodes of Season 1. I'm afraid that they've promised to come back in a few weeks to watch Season 2. I may have to change the locks.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
This is Heidi Klum at the recent Victoria's Secret fashion show wearing one of their $5MM bra extravaganza's. Now tell me, how is going to buy this thing or the one in the catalog. Have you seen that thing? What would you wear it under? It would snag on a blouse or a sweater. And I can't imagine that it's comfortable.
If I had $5MM, I can think of tons of other things that I would want to buy, you know, like real estate. I could buy a whole house with $5MM, not to mention all the Jimmy Choos and Manola Blahniks my little heart could desire. I could retire if I had $5MM (well okay work part time, given this economy).
The last thing I would do would be to buy an ugly bra!
Monday, November 17, 2008
If you want a good review of the film, head over to Hope Tarr's blog here. My five minute review is that while I loved it, I'm looking forward to seeing him lighten up just a little in the next film. Not a return to the crazy gadgets and silly quips, but just Bond having a little fun while chasing after criminables.
But still he does make for a great, tortured hero as Hope so rightly points out and he looks awesome in a tux. And man can this dude kick some serious ass!
I never expected to be chapter President. It was just something that happened along the way. One minute I was sitting in the back of a meeting, the next I was a Vice Presient of the chapter and before you know it, bingo, President! I hope I rose to occasion, and I hope that I was a good president, that I left the chapter in better shape then it was when I took office. Four years is a long time to be President. So I can imagine just how hard it has to be to govern a country for four years, let alone eight.
As much as I can't stand George Bush, he's had a rough 8 years in office man. I can't help but think that Al Gore must think he dodged a bullet when the election was stolen from him. He can sit on his front porch in Tennessee with his Nobel Peace Prize, and his Academy Award (I don't know if he actually got to have one for An Inconvenient Truth) and look back on these eight years laughing his ass off.
Anyway, I'm still hopeful for our new President Elect Obama (I just entered into a lottery for inauguration tickets on Chuck Schumer's web-site) and our new President Elect for RWA NYC Karen Cino. I wish them all the luck in the world and a great four years/1 year as President.
Friday, November 14, 2008
From Hello! Magazine:
In a regal yet relaxed pose and wearing the ceremonial uniform of the Welsh Guards, Prince Charles appears to be a man finally at peace with himself in the official image marking his 60th birthday on November 14. The portrait is by society photographer Hugo Burnand who favours an "approachable feel" to portraits so "you are almost talking to the person".
It's not the first time Hugo has worked with the royals – he took a portrait of the Duchess of Cornwall five years ago and photographed their wedding. Charles' marriage to Camilla, friends say, is central to his state of mind. Also key is the acceptance of many of the Prince's convictions into mainstream thinking: the environment, organic farming and opportunities for young people are all top of UK society's current concerns.
"He is a happy man, far happier than anyone has seen him for many, many years," an insider told the Daily Mail. "For most people reaching 60 is a time for reflection and is, more often than not, a time for regret over things not yet achieved."
"For the Prince it is the complete opposite. He feels that at long last people are finally starting to get him."
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Some fun facts about Gerard courtesy of People Magazine:
1. When he first read the script for Phantom of the Opera, Gerard Butler cried. "I was wiping the tears off," he told reporters in 2003. "It really touched me in an incredible way."
2. For 300, Gerard Butler was completely clean-shaven for his tiny loincloth. "I only did that because I was told to! Manscaping and all of that is not my thing. I'm more of the Clint Eastwood kind of guy," he told PEOPLE.
3. Gerard Butler's best move on women is the pickup line, "Have you seen 300?"
4. When Gerard Butler was featured in PEOPLE's 2004 Sexiest Man Alive issue, he said of the honor: "When I'm 80 and sagging all over, I can tell my grandkids, 'Look, when I was a lad, PEOPLE magazine thought I was sexy!'"
5. Gerard Butler regrets wearing "really wide-flared pants" and "trousers that zip up the side" in his youth. "I've made some gross misjudgments," he told In Style of his fashion don'ts.
Sigh, now I'm going to have to listen to the soundtrack of Phantom when I get home tonight.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
You can read more about her over at Scandalous Women.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
The Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex (wife of Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex)
Prince William, Prince Edward, and the Duke of Edinburgh (hard to believe he's 87 years old.)
The Queen laying a wreath at the Cenotaph
It is a custom to wear poppies on Remembrance Sunday. Paper poppies are sold in the weeks before the day by the Royal British Legion, in order to raise money to support ex-servicemen. According to Wikipedia: "The popp's significance to Remembrance Day is a result of Canadian military physician John McCrae's poem In Flanders Fields. The poppy emblem was chosen because of the poppies that bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, their red colour an appropriate symbol for the bloodshed of trench warfare. A Frenchwoman, Anna E. Guérin, introduced the widely used artificial poppies given out today. Some people choose to wear white poppies, which emphasises a desire for peaceful alternatives to military action.
Monday, November 10, 2008
My day started off with my getting my hair blown out (I tucked it up in a bun and sprayed the heck out of it to keep it from getting frizzy in the rain) and then I had my make-up done at Face Stockholm. I was going to try and be fiscally responsible, but I figured my birthday party was the one day of the year that my make-up should be flawless. For $60 they do an amazing job. Since I blew big bucks on the make-up job, I wore a dress from my closet that I hadn't worn in years (You can see all the photos over at Liz and Marianne's blog here.
Thank god it stopped raining before I arrived at the bar. I thought I was going to be early. However, I discovered that Thompson Street was a much longer walk from the Christopher Street train station than I had thought. As I kept walking down Bleeker Street, I thought is this street never going to end?
The Dove Parlour lived up to expectations. It is gorgeous, and decorated like a Victorian bordello. We had the corner in the back with two large leather sofas. Much champagne was drunk. It was great that so many people came out, except for my current crush, who wasn't feeling well. Note to self, do not text message when you have had too much champagne. Not a good idea. Instead of texting him how sorry I was, I was totally obnoxious. Basically I told him that I looked amazingly hot and he was blowing it. Sigh! This is why I'm still single.
After the bar, Liz Maverick, Hope Tarr and I walked all the way to Avenue A and 7th Street to join Leanna, her guy, Marianne and Jacob to go dancing. In high heels no less. Pyramid was great fun apart from the guy who felt the need to spit water on the crowd hitting Leanna and Marcos, who left. Of course, you know that Hope, Liz and I were the last ones to leave the club. We minced along on our aching feet until we somehow managed to hail a cab to take us to Union Square, where we dropped Hope off. Oh, and a limo driver tried to pick us up but he wanted $15 to take us to Union Square and when we said no, he called us ignorant!
After getting on the train in the wrong direction, Liz and I opted to splure on a cab ride home. I had planned to get out when the cab dropped her off, but that was before she handed me all the presents she stuffed in her bag for me. There were so many, there was no way I could schlep them home on the subway, so I took the cab the rest of the way home.
As I was getting ready for bed, I had an ephiphany about a book proposal I'm working on. Why is it that the light bulb goes on when you least expect it? When I woke up yesterday, nauseous from the hangover, it still seemed like a good idea, so I'm hopeful that I'm on the right track.
Friday, November 07, 2008
After the euphoric high of Election night (you can read about it on Liz Maverick, Hope Tarr, Leanna Renee Hieber, and Megan Frampton's blogs), and a wonderful Wednesday basking in the afterglow of having elected the first African-American President, yesterday was a effing sh**t show.
It wall started out when I could not get into blogger, no matter what I did. This was after someone hijacked the email that I was using for my other blog, Scandalous Women. Then I discovered that nothing had been done to tweak the new design, even though I paid the final installment. Then, I discovered that my reservation for my birthday cocktails was lost, and I had to practically cry over the phone to the reservationist to get something done. I also found out that the workshop that Leanna and I put together was not accepted for the Historical Novel Society conference, and I got short-changed when I bought one of my favorite meals of spicy tofu and vegetable lo mein last night. There was some other stuff that went down that I can't blog about but it was a particularly crappy day all around.
It wasn't until I got home and saw the beautiful flowers that a man type person gave me on Wednesday for my birthday, that I started to gain some perspective on life and the whole day. They had just started to open and the smell had permeated my bedroom.
I realized that I need to start letting go of stuff that I can't change which is pretty much everything. The only thing that is in my control is my writing. That I can fix, the rest I pretty much can't.
A very wise friend pointed out to me that if you do something nice for someone, you have to have no expectations that your kindness will be returned. You just have to do it because you want too. Well, I've always had expectations, and I always end up getting burned. I've always labored under the 'do unto others, as you would have them do unto you,' type of thing. So I need to also start lowering my expectations or just getting rid of them completely. Just because you do something nice for someone you consider a friend, doesn't mean it will ever be reciprocated. Most of the time, it won't. And if it is, well then you know that that person is a true friend, and you should cherish that person.
So, I'm trying to send out good vibrations into the Universe, to try and extend the feeling of good will that I had on Tuesday, and not to let petty grievances about how people suck spoil my days.
We'll see how that goes.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
I got to work at 9:00 am and went immediately to EW to read the Dancing with the Stars recap when I see the headline that Grey's Anatomy is letting Brooke Smith go as Dr. Erica Hahn.
WTF? After getting the viewers invested in a Callie/Erica story-line, now they get rid of the character? The one mature, sensible doctor on the entire staff, the only one who could put Cristina in her place. I admit it took me a while to warm of to Dr. Hahn. From the one she arrived at Seattle Grace and butted heads with Preston Burke, she rubbed me the wrong way. Perhaps because she was arrogant, and sure of herself as a surgeon. But then she joined the staff full-time after Burke left and bonded with Callie. She became more of a person, you got to see behind the hard shell. She was still a beyotch when it came to surgery, and had the worst bedside manner in history, but she was different from the other doctors on the show.
And I was totally invested in her relationship with Callie. Two women, who had never had a sexual feeling for another woman in their lives, suddenly found themselves attracted to and falling in love with another woman. I thought this was a great chance for the show to demonstrate just show fluid a woman's sexuality can be. And again it was a nice contrast to the Mer/Der drama, and Meredith's mommy issues.
Yes, Callie's dithering about the relationship could have been annoying, and the fact that she had to have Mark Sloan teach her how to "go to Brazil" as it were, was a bit strange. Wouldn't she just have consulted a book? I know that there are books written by gay men teaching women about men. I'm pretty sure there must be a book for straight women who are dabbling in Lesbiana. But it kind of made sense that Callie would freak out a bit about being attracted to a woman, and wondering if it was some kind of rebound thing after her break-up with George.
Now Erica is leaving, without even a wrap-up to the story-line. Apparently, ABC received 1,000,000 emails from viewers who declared that they would never darken the doors of a Disney theme park again because Grey's Anatomy dared to show a relationship between two women that was relatively explicit (although tame compared to some of the heterosexual relationships on the show).
Of course creator Shonda Rimes says that the character wasn't written off because she was gay, they just feel that the relationship doesn't have legs. Really? After forcing us to sit through George and Izzy all last season, they feel that Callie and Erica's relationship doesn't have legs? The season is only like 5 episodes in, Cristina and Burke had a relationship for 3 seasons, Meredith and Derek have been going through their on/off thing for 5 seasons now.
Rimes also said some bull in the statement about how they still have a lesbian character, Callie Torres on the show. Really? Is this the same character who slept with Mark Sloan twice in the last episode, and realized that she still enjoyed sex with a man? That lesbian? Oh, and she also said that Callie wouldn't jump into another relationship for the rest of the season, because she would be mourning the relationship.
Hahn was a ball-buster as a surgeon, she took no prisoners, she didn't turn warm and fuzzy when it came to patients. Yes, she discovered that she had feelings for Callie but she never let it interfere with her job the way the other surgeons on the show do. I'm going to miss the character. If it weren't for the new hottie doctor played by Kevin McKidd, I swear I would have to stop watching this show.
I think that not just ABC but Shonda got cold feet with this storyline. Here we are in 2009, and apparently only gay men are allowed to have relationships on network TV and then only rarely. You hardly see Cliff, Marc's boyfriend, on Ugly Betty.
Sigh, I'm really bummed.