joy magnetism: April 2011

@Joymagnetism, now on Instagram!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Last call - Escape Home to NYC Day #4

Magnet #1163 - HERE ZOMBIE

This magnet my friend brought back from the Romantic Times convention best represents how I feel right now.

After three days of running around town like a girl with a hall pass, it would seem that NYC has kicked my ass.

As I write, I'm running a low-grade fever, all aches and sniffles...putting off packing for Houston because I don't really want to get up off the bed. OIY. There went my Explore Brooklyn Day plans, along with my back-ups of the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Festival, and even the antique show I wanted to check out.

I did pretty good though, despite myself, brunching on the UWS and watching Fast Five. Yep, only #prettyboys and #fastcars could have made me break my self-imposed NYC movie theatres ban. (But, well worth the effort, because it was one of the better of the franchise - the twist at the end more than made up for its silly Ocean's 11 slant.)

Anyway, so this is how my escape home to NYC trip ends, with a sneeze and a sniffle, rather than a Tom Collins w/ a splash of cran to celebrate tomorrow's birthday. No matter, at least I won't be hungover for the Houston flight in the morning. So there's that.

Thanks, NYC, for the fun four days here at home - I squeezed in enough good times and food to last me through the next couple of months.

And then hopefully, I'll be coming home to stay.
Pin It!

Friday, April 29, 2011

To marry a prince - Escape Home to NYC Day #3

Magnet #1162 - Keep Calm

Could not resist this perfect magnet my sister sent.

As I type this, it's 4:50am, and I've just settled into the aforementioned couch in Queens...wondering how long we have to wait before breaking out the stereotypical scones and clotted cream.

Congratulations, cutecouple I've never met before!

So funny how the world has invested so much in the happy couple - it's like we're all reading from the same romance book! And truly, they're everywhere - I've been away for a while, so it was just yesterday that I saw the Congratulations William & Catherine! taxi-top ads from MSNBC with complete with flag and engagement picture.

Uh, ya'll know they're not our royal family, right? That we fought a whole war of Independence a few years ago to get away from 'em?

Eh, no matter.

Today, we are all royal.

Wait. We're not?
Pin It!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Forbidden fruit - Escape Home to NYC Day #2

Magnet #1160 - Forbidden Planet

Day #2:

- breakfast strawberry crepes at Alice's Tea Cup
- NYPL to get some work done
- lunch with friends at Bill's Bar & Burgers
- Vosges for a Rooster
- Met & MoMA in three hours.

Ya'll. I am lovin' speed-dating my town! How much of this stuff do we just take for granted living here?

Anyway, by way of explanation, ya'll know all that shopping I did yesterday?

If you know me at all, you know I don't go crazy and spend a boatload on couture or hell, even clothes. Totes not me. (Don't get me wrong, drop me in an Outlet and I'll do a fair amount of damage, but NYC is not an Outlet.)

Instead, with a little money in my pocket, I end up buying silly stuff. And usually from silly places. It's all that forbidden gifty stuff that people keep telling me not to buy within a month of my birthday, so they can buy it for me.

Like my trip yesterday to Forbidden Planet.

This is not my demo, folks. I don't really know what my demo is at this point, but FP is not it. I mean, whenever I walk in, I still feel about a million years old, and way too corporate to be darkening their doorstep. (Especially as I'm wedged in between nerdy cuteboys grabbing their week's worth of comics.)

I don't even read comics or manga - ya'll know that! I've said it a million times! Nor do I play with action figures (mind, I own them, but they never get played with or whatever). And, I don't even wear all those graphic Ts they sell. (Today's Doctor Who Gallifrey Road T-shirt doesn't count, as I didn't buy it there. And yeah, I was totes gonna Tweet a pic of it on me, but then realized I had just taken, and was about to Tweet, a picture of my boobs. Uh, NO.)

Anyway, so yeah. Ya'll have no idea how much crap I ended up buying there. AND OMG, I found my stuffed Adipose (I was devastated when I lost mine on my last trip to the BBC and was SO happy to pay for it - again.) Shut. It.

I also ended up buying a boatload of stuff at Reminiscence, a fave novelty store a friend introduced me to several years ago, down on 23rd off of 6th. Slightly kitschy stuff, slightly dirrty stuff, and I must confess I've never actually made it to the back of the store. No kidding.

But I love spending time wandering through the store. SO much fun. I mean, I'm totally the biggest kitschy gift person ever - I mean, what's the point of presents if you get someone something they'd give themselves?

And of course, if you know me, you know it's almost impossible for me to leave a bookstore without a book in hand. (I may not actually read it, but owning it is half the battle, dammit!) So of course, I had to buy the books of all three authors at last night's book launch.

Sure, I could have scored free copies of them, easy. But I love, love, love giving those few cents to the author's sales numbers. Plus, how can you not help Independent booksellers like Word Brooklyn out?

So yeah - not a pile of new clothes, just a new pile of dustcatchers...for me, but mostly for others. Hah. Just like half the things in my life, my version of shopping is nowhere near anyone else's version of shopping.

Think 12-year-old.

Or hell, it's quite possible that maybe I'm really turning 5 on Sunday.
Pin It!

Crazy as Joy - Escape Home to NYC Day #1

Magnet #1160 - Crazy as a Loon

Hahaha - one day in the City, and I totally forgot to do yesterday's magnet. Oh, how quickly they forget.

Mind you, I didn't get home until midnight this morning, and I woke up at 5 yesterday, so I totally get a pass.

Yeah, you can definitely tell I'm back in New York, because I'm running around town, nonstop since then, crazy as a loon. (See what I did there?)

I can't help it! I didn't want to miss a single second of my first day back in town - so of course, I didn't.

Diner breakfast with my diner coffee - Check.

Lunch and fab dessert (what idiot turns down dessert, I ask you?) at Union Square Cafe with a good friend - Check.

Checking out the digs for a possible place of employment - Check.

Shopping - Check.

Wait. More shopping - Check.

A little more shopping - Check.

Ice cream from the Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream Truck - Check.

Still more shopping - Check.

Acquired nine magnets - Check. (Including this Rangeley Lakes, Maine, magnet my lunch friend brought back for me from Maine! Supercool! And quite fitting, thanks!)

Drinks with good friends to bitch about old place of work - Check.

A quintessentially NYC, evening book launch event in Brooklyn - Check.

Discover really great restaurant for dinner in Brooklyn - Check. (Haven't a clue what the name of the place was...and not entirely sure I could find it again, but whatever.)

Traveling on as many as five different train lines in an hour - Check.

Ready to start the next day?

Oh, hells yes.

On the docket?

Alice's Tea Cup for scones. The Met. The MoMA. Lunch/Dinner/Drinks with friends and coworkers. Heading out to Queens for the Royal Wedding.

And, oh yeah, possibly some shopping.
Pin It!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Texas, for...five years

Magnet #1159 - Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can't Lose!

Been holding on to this magnet for a while now, waiting for the inevitable bitter end. And, much as I was loathe to, I ended up finishing up the last four episodes of Friday Night Lights today on the train.

I'm so very, very sad that it's over. Let's face it though - when the show first started five years ago, no one thought it was gonna last.

Sure, critics loved it, fans loved it, but no one thought it was gonna come back. So technically, each season has been such a wonderful gift, we can't really be greedy, methinks. Still. I will miss this show ever so much.

Anyway, since the woman beside me here on this train didn't realize I was watching the very. last. episode. ever. and was subsequently spoiled (like crazy), I'm feeling especially sensitive to not loading this post up with any spoilers. So I won't.

But, here's what I will say that IS spoilery.

Stop reading now if you DO NOT WANT to be spoiled.

This is your last warning.

I mean it. I'm warning you.

Really. Stop now.

Did you stop?

Be sure now.

Ok. Here goes.

I didn't think it was possible for Kyle Chandler to look hotter than when he wore his Dillon Panthers Blue golf shirt and hat out on the field. He was so darned pretty in that color.

Then he donned the East Dillon Lions Red and Black. And he was even hotter in black that golf shirt out on the field.

And by goodness, ya'll, I honestly didn't think he could get hotter.

Until he put on that Pioneer Green.

Holy freakin' cow does that green bring out the color in his eyes.

Pin It!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Erotica, that's what SHE said

Magnet #1158 - Wasteland

Hee. My friends went to the Romantic Times convention in LA last week - for work and for fun. And I got lotsa magnets! Yay!

Of course, most of them have nekkid boys and girls on them, so now I'm left with figuring out how to use them without inviting every bot and spammer known to man.

I do love this pretty magnet...even as the website on it is particularly giggle-worthy for me. I shan't link to it, for fear of NSFW content, even though I don't really know if it is, or not.

And that's pretty indicative of today's marketplace.

It wasn't all that long ago that that the Erotica sections at book stores were stand-alone, and off to the side. Indeed, my friend who had to read/buy Erotica (for work) would go off down the aisle to browse, leaving me in the regular romance section.

Nowadays, for better or worse, the Erotica lives right next to and in some cases, within the shelves of regular romance - steamy hot covers of hard-bodied warriors and strong fonts mixed in with pretty lacy dresses and curlicue fonts.

For better, because it legitimizes a genre that's long been unrecognized, even as their numbers bear out a dedicated and buying audience.

For worse, because for those who aren't looking for all that ahem, adventure, it's getting harder and harder to tell the difference between the two genres.

I'll admit, I'm in the latter category - I've never read an Erotica title, nor am I likely to. I don't judge or begrudge their existence, but it's just not my cup of tea.

The magnets are pretty hot, though. Nope, I don't mind that.

At all.
Pin It!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Poor little Catholic girl

Magnet #1157 - Unleash your joy

I wanted something non-denominational for this Easter Sunday, and figured this Kelly Rae Roberts inspirational magnet fits the bill.

Unleash your joy
Embrace your truth
Pick more wild flowers
Leap fearlessly
Collect moments of kindness


So, today, I learned something about Easter.

Last night, I saw so many Tweets about parents getting drunk and hiding Easter eggs for their kids, and was totally confused.

Ya'll, I kid you not that until this morning, when several friends posted FB pictures of their kids finding the eggs, I didn't realize that parents actually hid Easter eggs around their own house for their kids to find on Easter morning.

I've never done an Easter egg hunt at my house. Ever. In fact, I don't think my parents have ever bought those plastic eggs. Besides that, a friend pointed that that it might be we do public hunts down here, that maybe it's just a Southern thing - that our hunts are generally held in parks or churches.

I wouldn't know, really - I mean, I can seriously count on one hand how many egg hunts I've been on. And that's counting taking my baby cousins to Central Park for their egg pick-up hunt just a few years ago.

It's crazy, I know. I mean, I always knew about the Easter baskets and I've had pictures taken with the Easter bunny, but I've never known about the morning egg hunts around the house.

For as long as I can remember, though, I've always been superjealous of kids with their Easter baskets and eggs and chocolate bunnies. Once when I was little, I made the mistake of asking why I didn't get a basket or candy.

Totally got the religious lecture about Easter, and that they would never understand the tradition of bunnies and candy, and that therefore, no, we would not have baskets or candy in our house. Ever. I was crushed.

One visit to the Philippines during Easter week proved how serious they take this holiday, with procession after procession, men carrying actual crosses in the streets and being whipped, men getting tied to crosses, a giant Judas being burned in effigy to the jeers of large crowds, kissing of someone's feet (note: I did not go to this, so I dunno if it was real feet, or a statue), novena after novena, stations after stations of the cross, mass after mass. After mass after mass.

It was non-stop.

So yeah, no basket or candy for me. Ever.

Poor little Catholic girl, I know.

Oiy. Thank goodness they never had a problem with Santa.

Update. Would you look at that. Still absolutely no remorse from my mommy for not giving me baskets and candy over the years.

Clarification. I should mention that it really was just my parents - there are plenty of lucky Filipino kids whose parents embraced the bunny and all his accouterments. Sigh. But this post notwithstanding, no, I'm not bitter at all.
Pin It!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The sound of [The] Silence

Magnet #1156 - Doctor Who Series 6

Happy Whoday, ya'll!

What? Need I say more?

9pm tonight. BBC-America.

Go. Watch. It.
Pin It!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Shut UP! It's Oreo Fudge Cremes!

Magnet #1155 - Franklin Delano Roosevelt

The beauty of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1933-1945) being one of my fave presidents is that I've done a boatload of magnetposts on him - which means I can use this magnet for absolutely nothing but...Oreos.

That's right.


I've been streaming the heck out of FOX, Hulu and yes, CW lately, in a desperate attempt to keep up with my shows, and it looks like Nabisco's done a pretty extensive buy with FOX because I keep seeing the same commercial all over again.

Not even joking, every break for the last several eps I've watched of Fringe and now Bones, it's the same. tv. ad.

Luckily, the Oreo Fudge Creme spot is actually watchable and re-watchable. And watchable again. At least for me.

The spot's way below, but it basically features a family expounding on the indescribably delicious fudgey goodness of the cookies, each member using today's catchphrases. Like, for reals. Seriously.

It's a great spot mainly because as each phrase comes up, you totes think of the last time that you yourself used it...and if you're me, it was probably like five minutes ago. Get out, I know you're surprised. No way! I know, right?

The funny thing is that I can totally see the copywriters in some conference room arguing with the clients over which phrases to keep and use. Especially because there are totally a couple of phrases I haven't heard anyone use like Hello Sir and Mahjong. Whoa, really?

My favorite is Mom busting out with Shut the front door, because I keep getting dinged for telling everyone and everything to Shut up. (It's not bad manners, dammit, I swear, for me, it's a term of endearment! Work with me, yo!)

So. The question is, will I buy it next time I'm roaming Food Lion aisles? I dunno. The packaging's pretty, I'm sure the price point's fine, and I've seen the ad more than the supposed seven times to make me buy it. And did I say the packaging's pretty?

One thing's for sure, if or when I do try Oreo Fudge Cremes? I will totally yell out Franklin Delano!

I mean, what?

Pin It!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Rufus. Really?

Magnet #1154 - William II (r. 1087-1100)

Oh, I sooooo need to get home to the rest of my magnet collection, I'm down to 25 in the photobucket collection and not an ounce of inspiration to use any of them. So this William II magnet will have to suffice.

This time next week, I will likely be ensconced on a sofa in Queens (natch), awaiting the wedding of another royal William - hopefully eating some scones and clotted cream (though, I'm betting Zabar's will be sold out by the time I get home).

So what's this I hear that if/when Prince William takes over, he gets to pick his official name? That it can be any combination of his full name - Prince William Arthur Philip Louis?

I mean, it's probably easiest to go with King William V, right? But, how much fun would that be, picking out your name? (I'd totally be Queen Joy. C'mon, that's nice!) But, it'd be fun to have a King Artie? King Phil? King Bill? King Lou? Oh, the possibilities abound.

Anyway, this William reigned for only 13 years before being killed in a hunting accident in the New Forest. But, apparently, he was known as William Rufus, a nickname given to him because of his ruddy complexion and blond hair. According to reports, he had an outspoken personality, didn't get along with the Church, and had to fight conspiracies left and right to keep his throne.

Hmmm...that sounds like a dozen other monarchs we've run across, no?
Pin It!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Ang kang Tatay

Magnet #1153 - Van Gogh's First Steps After Millet

So apparently, Van Gogh used to recreate Jean-Francois Millet's artwork in his own voice - something like 21 paintings, during his asylum time at Saint-Rémy. This painting, First Steps, After Millet is hanging in the Met - and here's Millet's original crayon on paper for comparison.

I do love this painting, because it's a supercute image of a child's first steps - especially if you see that the child is headed straight for the father's arms across the way.

Ya'll have heard it before - despite the fact that I don't want one, I'm a baby whisperer. For the most part, babies love me. I maintain it's because they see themselves in my chubby face.

It's been a fun year and a half, because two of my good friends had little girls, born 10 months apart. It's actually one of the advantages to being down here in NC this year, because I get to see both girls more often, and get to see them grow up, close up. Or, almost, anyway.

Last week, my BFF asked me to come sit for a bit with her daughter, who was supposedly just gonna sleep the whole time. It's possible that my BFF needs to read my blog more often, because I could swear I've done a blogpost about not allowing me near babies trying to sleep.

Here's why:

I learned that night that my threshold for leaving crying babies in their cribs is just about 10 minutes. What's worse? That baby totally knew I was putty in her hands, which is why she spent the next hour in my arms.

Couldn't help it. And she didn't sleep, either. She didn't cry at all, even as I spent most of that hour humming and singing the same Filipino lullaby over and over again.

It was like a magic lullaby, which totally kept her quiet the whole time! It's below, the lullaby that Tatay, quite possibly the original baby whisperer, always used to sing to us when we were little:

Ang kang Tatay
nga mga saging
nan gatumba kay gihangin

Ug wala pa unta hagagina
ang kang Tatay nga mga saging
dili matumba.*

Who knew? Filipino lullabies work on white babies!

My dad's bananas
have fallen because of the wind.

If it weren't for the wind,
my dad's bananas wouldn't have fallen.

(Yeah, I laughed at that, too.)
Pin It!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The shot heard round the world

Magnet #1152 - Minute Man National Historical Park

Massachusetts is one of those places with history lurking around every corner - our U.S. history. And I love it.

Seriously, I could probably spend months in this state and never run out of things to do, places to see, history to learn. One roadtrip, we managed to find Louisa May Alcott's house, drive near Walden pond, and drop by the Minute Man National Historical Park.

Ya'll know how I feel about walking where history took place, and North Bridge and the surrounding parkland is one of those places.

It was here, on April 19th, 1775, that the conflict between the British government and the colonists came to a head and according to Emerson's account, the first shots were fired and heard around the world.

Wow. I was totally gonna do the whole history lesson, but have I got something better. Someone's actually recorded the National Park Service ranger talk! Annnnd ya'll know I love my park rangers...

Part 1:

Minute Man National Park Battle Road Trail Walk Part 1 from Frank Breen on Vimeo.

Part 2:

Minute Man National Park Battle Road Trail Walk Part 2 from Frank Breen on Vimeo.

Pin It!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Escape home to New York

Magnet #1151 - Wall St

My last MTA magnet. I loved these little guys - so pretty, and such a good use for old subway maps. I wonder if they have more...I shall find out soon!

Yay, I'm comin' home to NYC next week! Mind you, it's just a short visit, and I'll have to come right back home to NC afterward (because they've finally decided on which course of action to take with my heart patient dad) but that's ok - I'm comin' home!

If you read this blog at all, or you know me at least a little bit, you know how much I love NYC. I don't even have to be outside of my apartment to love being in town, but it's truly one of my favorite places in the whole wide world. (Both my apartment, and my town.)

The first thing I'm doing when I get there is stopping at Perfecto's around the corner for a slice. I didn't think I'd miss NYC pizza all that much, but after stops at Pizza Hut, Sbarro's, and Cici' frozen pizzas by DiGiorno's and CPK, I just want a slice. A nice, giant, greasy plain slice that drips over the edge of my paper plate, that will burn my mouth the second I bite into it. That's it. Oh. And maybe some garlic knots.

Then breakfast is totally gonna be City Diner down the block for my scrambled eggs, sausage and home fries, toast and strawberry jam - and coffee. Real and proper diner coffee. A real and proper breakfast. How I've missed it so. Not that it's all that bad here, but diner coffee can't be replicated by Dunkin or Krispy Kreme or Starbucks.

After that, I'm headed across the street to get my haircut by Autumn at Dramatics NYC. No, that's not her real name - they all use fake stage names (Rolex, anyone?), but she has to fix my hair. This dude mangled the heck out of it here in NC, and I can't stand looking at it anymore. I will be SO happy after she's done!

That will all hopefully be done in time for my jam-packed schedule of lunches, drinks, dinners, museums, and random events, etc. My Google calendar's already doing that annoying +2, +3 events thing in the month-view.

It's so funny, you can definitely tell I'm headed back to NYC specifically, because I'm already trying to overschedule everything and everyone - going from place to place, seeing as many people as I can see, and doing as many NYC things as I can squeeze in. (I can't help it, you try being stranded on 22 acres in the middle of nowhere!)

I've already mentally written down grabbing a 7-day MetroCard the second I get in, even though I'm really only home for four days. I'm gonna need it with all the running around I'm gonna be doing.

Someone in New York already told me to slow down, that NY would still be there when I got back home, but honestly, if there's anything I've learned in the last year, it's to do as much as you can, when you can do it.

And nowhere better to do it in the world, than New York City.
Pin It!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Always removed

Magnet #1150 - Duran Duran

Duran Duran is playing Coachella tonight.

This weekend, Twitter's been full of folks Tweeting about how jealous they were of the folks that went out there. Not me - only because I've never been a big concert-goer. Well, at least, I wasn't jealous...

...until I just found out a friend, of a friend, of a friend is there with them.

No, I mean with them. As in, in the group shot of Duran Duran before boarding the plane to head out there.

Sigh. I need to get an infinitely cooler life.
Pin It!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Power falls

Magnet #1149 - Niagara Falls State Park

Huh. Well if you have to go to the restroom, don't visit the Niagara Falls State Park site. I'm just sayin'.

This magnet's from my sister and BIL's trip up there - I swear when I end up there, I'm there for like a couple of hours - if that - then I'm out. But, I haven't seen the falls lit up at night, so maybe that's one point for trying to go back to Niagara for more than a quick pitstop?

The first Niagara power plant went online in 1894, and was built with the help of tycoon investors such as Morgan, Astor and Vanderbilt. Nowadays, Niagara Falls is one of the largest sources of hydroelectricity in the world - serving five power plants between the United States and Canada. It's hard to imagine today because we take our electricity for granted, but going from one lightbulb to lighting millions upon millions of homes truly must have been the marvel of the day.

Picked this magnet today, because we've only just now gotten our power back this evening, after heavy storms knocked down a couple of trees down the road. Of course, there are whole countries out there whose power supplies aren't enough for their population, so they're constantly browning out, or rationing their power. So, really, I dunno why I get so cagey when we lose it for more than a few minutes. But I do!

It's actually kind of funny, you'd think it was the end of the world, the way I was sucking down every ounce of power on my cell phone, Tweeting and FBing and texting - just trying to suck every ounce of entertainment from that poor thing before I was exiled to reading by candlelight a la Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Although, if it were a real emergency, man, I would totally fail at survival, because I didn't ration the power on the laptop or the cell at all.

Pin It!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Age of denial, or young at heart?

Magnet #1148 - How old would you be

I've been thinking a lot about age lately.

Three mistakes in the last year have made me giggle:

1) When I got my hair done on the Upper West Side, the guy washing my hair asked me if I was at Columbia undergrad.
2) When I had my hair in pigtail braids, the guy manning the desk at a DC museum asked me if I was there for the tutoring sessions.
3) The golf tournament intern this year thought I was his age, or least the sage old age of 25.

I said yes to all three. Shoot, better take it while you can get it, I say.

Earlier this week, when I tried to gracefully (ok, not really) avoid telling my age to a guy (a whole teenager younger than me), I was hoisted by my own Facebook petard - he totally stalked my FB profile, and deduced my age from my graduating years for college and high school. When I told him I was totally editing said profile asap, he plaintively asked, "What does it matter?!"

And you know what? Good question.

Honestly, I've never been afraid to tell people how old I am. Like ever.

Because right now, I don't feel it. You know how when you talk to (really) old people, they say they don't feel their age? That they're always surprised when they see their old faces in the mirror looking back at them, because in their heads they'll always be some young number (usually attached to their most formative years)?

Yeah. That.

I don't feel anywhere close to the age I am, and to be fair, I sure as hell don't act like it. Call me Peter Pan, or young at heart, or whatever. But I honestly don't see the point in being burdened down by age. Yet.

Obviously, as I get older, I reserve the right to change my mind...this will probably happen the day someone guesses my real age on first try.

Ya'll steer clear. And look at me only in dim lighting. Thanks.

Hah. So much for damn the age torpedoes.
Pin It!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What about love?

Magnet #1147 - Mills & Boon, Huntley proposes

Today's Mills & Boon magnet was from a good friend who also loves a good love story. I figured it should be used for today, because there are just some things you take for granted will always be around.

Paperback romance books are one. Soap operas are another.

Today, ABC Daytime sounded yet another death knell of soap operas by canceling two of their long-running shows, All My Children and One Life to Live in the coming months, planning on replacing them with ridiculous reality and lifestyle programming.

It's not a surprise to anyone who watches soaps, really. We've known they were dying for years, but we were still surprised when it finally happened.

After all, ABC has been throwing Hail Mary passes for years, trying to keep the shows afloat - moving productions across country, skimping on production values, overworking their talent and crew, reducing show orders, and myriad other tactics.

Ironically, instead of saving the shows, quality suffered immensely, viewers left in droves, leaving ABC to finally manage to drive the shows into the ground.

To be sure, the economic impact is going to be scary - hundreds of people will now be out of work, not to mention the trickle-down effect to other ancillary outlets (industry magazines, a steady stable of pretty talent to pull for other shows, marketing, production, etc.).

But more dramatically (and fittingly so), there's an emotional impact that canceling these two shows will have. It's been playing out all over Twitter and FB all day - stories of how folks watched it with their mothers and grandmothers, of how the families of Pine Valley and Llanview are like real families, of how these shows have helped shape generations of women and men since they started airing more than 40 years ago.

And, if you think about it, these TV families have been coming into people's homes for 40 years, it's no wonder that there's a real sense of loss and betrayal from the audience.

It's fairly sad-making, no matter how much we were prepared for it.

Anyway, too many other folks will write scathing and/or objective autopsies of what ABC did wrong over the last decade, and still other folks will write heartfelt good-byes to the shows, so I won't go on about it anymore.

But, I have to believe this: Romance is still the best-selling genre for a reason.

There will always be men. And there will always be women. And there will always be men and women falling in love with each other.

Which means that it doesn't matter what format it's in, there will always be great love stories to tell.

Now we just have to look harder find them.
Pin It!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A joy by any other character...

Magnet #1146 - Joy

I used to have this friend who was always wary of being around people who were not speaking English. She was always convinced they were talking about her.

I mean, clearly that was just her being paranoid (except when those folks really were talking about her), but I gotta say, I kinda have the same wariness when it comes to buying anything that's supposed to be my name in another language. You just never know if it really says Joy.

For example, I once compared the character on this JOY magnet to the other stuff that my friends and I brought back from Hong Kong. Between this magnet and the JOY ink stamp they brought, plus the JOY I had etched into an ivory pendant, I could swear, it's never the same character. And I'm afraid to check the special art frames at Target or Bed Bath or anywhere else, because who knows if they really match JOY, either.

You could argue that it could be several different languages and/or dialects that are being used, I suppose. Mind you, I don't really care.

Honestly, if it has my name on it, I totally buy it anyway.

I'm just sayin' if you see my name in another language, and you know for a fact that it doesn't say what I think it says...don't tell me.

Ignorance is joy, apparently.
Pin It!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

"Good fortune come to thee."

Magnet #1145 - Good Fortune

I picked up this magnet in DC at the Folger Shakespeare Library, during their really interesting Henry VIII exhibit last year.

It's such a cool place to go, if you're at all interested in the Bard - I admit, I rushed through it, having packed it in with a visit to the Capitol and the Supreme Court. Yes. All three in one day.

Still, even rushed, I totally loved seeing all the Henry VIII artifacts - my favorite was young Henry’s copy of Cicero, inscribed: “Thys Boke Is Myne Prynce Henry.”

Anyway, I was going save this magnet for when we see David Tennant and Catherine Tate in Much Ado About Nothing in London in June. It's kinda funny, but when I bought the magnet just before New Year's, I figured I would eventually do an amusing (and probably slightly whiny) post about how the last year's been hard, but maybe soon fortune would smile.

But, I'm using it for today, because we're going into 2.5 months into The New Normal and we're still in this ridiculous healthcare holding pattern of let's solicit yet another opinion from yet another doctor, so they can take two weeks to decide what to do, and possibly send him for more tests so that we can figure out more levels and whatnot before they decide what to do. This morning, we're going for yet another follow-up with yet another specialist, so we need all the good fortune karma we can get at this point.

Hopefully, we find out what our next steps are in about six hours.

Wish us luck!
Pin It!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Cuteboy update

Magnet #1144 - Thorsten Kaye at ABC's SuperSoapWeekend

Earlier this week my sister told me she can't tell anymore when the cuteboys I talk about are real, or not real - people I know in real life, or just on television.

Enter this magnet.

I can't believe I haven't used this one before. It's Thorsten Kaye at SuperSoapWeekend in Florida several years ago. The picture's fairly old - I mean, the man's not even on All My Children anymore, but shoot, a cuteboy is a cuteboy is a hot Thorsten - and I had this magnet made because it's one of my all-time favorite shots of him.

It's been a while since I've done a fluff magnetpost on cuteboys - I found this old 2008 cuteboy post that outlined all my favorite cuteboys of the time.

Looking back, half the shows aren't even on television anymore, but it cracks me up that my old cuteboy crushes have just been handily replaced by new ones...

Oh, well, I guess crushes by their very nature are fleeting. By network...shall we?

  • Castle - Hello, @nathanfillion, and the rest of the boys of the cast.
  • Brothers & Sisters - Hell, all of the Walker brothers.
  • Private Practice - Taye Diggs, because he can do no wrong.
  • Hawaii Five-0 - Alex O'Loughlin, Scotty Caan, and @danieldaekim? Yes.
  • Blue Bloods - Tom Selleck, Donnie Wahlberg, Will Estes, I'll take 'em.
  • The Good Wife - Josh Charles and yes, Alan Cumming.
  • NCISes - Though I'm totes innocent, wouldn't mind if any of them came to question me.
  • Flashpoint - The. Whole. Team.

  • Chuck - @ZacharyLevi. And Jayne - I mean, Adam Baldwin.
  • Friday Night Lights - Coach Kyle. Always, Coach Kyle.
  • Parenthood - Peter Krause and can't believe I have a crush on him, @daxsheppard1.

  • Fringe - Joshua Jackson.
  • The Chicago Code - Jason Clarke and Matt Lauria. And shoot, add Delroy Lindo to that.
  • Bones - @David_Boreanaz, and that @TJThyne guy.
  • Lie to Me - Oddly enough, @TimRothLietoMe. But also the lovely @brendan_hines

The CW
  • One Tree Hill - Nathan. And his new BFF, the dude from Lipstick Jungle.
  • Supernatural - Both Winchester boys, and I'll raise you a Castiel.

  • Psych - c'mon. Shawn and Gus? Yes.
  • Burn Notice - Michael. And of course, Sam Axe. Hello.
  • White Collar - Matt Bomer. And oddly, the dude who plays Peter.
  • In Plain Sight - Marshal Marshall - oddball, but then who doesn't love that.
  • Royal Pains - Both brothers.

  • Mad Men - Jon Hamm and John Slattery, even though we won't see them back until 2012. Oiy.

  • Sons of Anarchy - Jax Teller, cuz with each passing season, even with his hair and beard choices, he's still just awesome.

  • The Glades - Matt Passmore is the only one in the world who can get me to watch any eps of McLeod's Daughters.

  • Army Wives - Seriously just love all the husbands.

Yes, I just did a whole magnetpost on the cuteboys I watch on TV. Did I leave anyone out?

And yeah. It might be true that the show has to have a resident cuteboy for me to be invested. I dunno what that says about me.

Clearly, given my back and forth between RL names and character names, the line between RL cuteboys and TV cuteboys a little blurry...but, really, you'd know it if I were referencing any of these cuteboys in relation to my real life, thanks.
Pin It!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Church signs

Magnet #1143 - When your heart speaks, take good notes

I was totally gonna try and wax poetic about this handmade sign that I made into a magnet, but it's a magnetblog and honestly, I haven't figured out what my heart's saying yet, so I haven't taken any good notes. But, rest assured, I'm ready.

Anyway, this might make me sound like I grew up in the Bible Belt (which I did), but one of the things that I've always liked about the South are the omnipresent church signs and their attention-getting quotes.

We've read them all our lives, and my sister wondered aloud the other day, where must these church sign sayings come from. I've figured out, that other than the Bible or hymnals, some of them must come from this simple, but well-done Church Sayings site.

I must pass at least a dozen signs every day, on the way to taking my mother to and from work, running errands around town, etc. Signs that say stuff like,

"Do not buy silk, when you owe money for milk."

Or, "Keep looking up, Jesus is coming!"

Or, "7 days without prayer makes 1 weak."

Or, "God adds and multiplies. Satan subtracts and divides."

Or, my new favorite, "If you can't make a choice - you just did."

The thing is that I never really notice the name or denomination of the church, but as time goes on, I've found the quotes they use start to reflect their personalities. Sometimes they're deadly serious, like you will totally go to hell if you don't stop by this church right this holy second, and sometimes, they're funny as all get out, and you just can't stop chuckling miles later, and sometimes, just sometimes, they're spot on the inspiration money.

It's not like I'm really devoutly religious - but sometimes, when you're driving down the road, you need a pick-me-up message, and these sayings sometimes hit home.

A sign from God. Literally.
Pin It!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

"And get a white wicker basket for Joy..."

Magnet #1142 - Starbucks Coffee

Little did we know that that text would spark the funniest team story to come out of our golf tournament last month.

We sent our youngest teammate out to the store to run some errands. We texted him to pick up some sharpies, some paper towels, do the daily Starbucks run, and get a white wicker basket for Joy.

An hour later, when the dude showed up in front of me with a tray of a lone venti cup marked JOY, I could only look in askance at him. Particularly since I hadn't ordered a coffee. He hands me the tray and I kinda back away, saying, but I didn't get that. He looks at me and says, "Yeah, the people at Starbucks didn't know what a White Wicker Basket was, so they made me this."

Here's the thing. Ya'll should all want to play poker with me, because I am incapable of keeping a straight face. So I can only imagine the look of utter confusion at his utter confusion, and then my barely muffled laughter as I slowly realized that I was being handed what he thought was a white wicker basket. Even the dude who sent him on the errand had his head cocked slightly, wondering what was going on. And as we dissolved into laughter, I said, "But I wanted a White. Wicker. Basket."

"Yeah, this is it. I showed them the text and everything, but they were still confused, and this is what they gave me."

Tears were welling up in my eyes from the laughter, so I had no choice but to say thanks and take the coffee. I then proceeded to walk around with it for the next couple hours, giggling periodically, in between bouts of hysterical laughter.

I stopped him again a bit later, and I was like, "Ummm, so we're clear...I wanted a White. Wicker. Basket."

He looks at me, and goes, "Yeah, I know. But the Starbucks people didn't know what it was. I'm sorry if it wasn't what you wanted." I giggled again and walked away.

It wasn't until later that night in the office, that we actually went through the White. Wicker. Basket. story again, with the same result. Finally we took pity on the poor boy and Googled images of a which he replied,


And the light went on.

In the end, you have to excuse him - he's a boy. How many boys in their early 20s know right off the bat what a white wicker basket is? And, within the context of the texting, yeah, maybe we should have been more specific between the Starbucks run and the WWB for Joy.

Still, it provided hours of entertainment and joyous laughter. Literally. It's why I could NOT pass up this magnet. I just couldn't.

Tell you what though. I'm very sad I'll never be able to recreate that drink, because that White Wicker Basket?

Was the best damn Starbucks coffee I've ever had in my life.
Pin It!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Impulse buy

Magnet #1141 - Chatter box

You know those colorful containers at the cashier counters? The ones with all the supercute whatevers with the handwritten price stickers? The stuff you don't need, but you absolutely want. The impulse buys?

Yeah. They make that stuff for me. I'm the one who holds up the line as I dig through a little bucket of cute pins or rocks (looking for my name) or mood rings. They're the things that inevitably add a good $5 to my purchase.

I can't help it. I see it. I want it. I buy it.

I love this design series of pins magnets - every time I see them, I end up getting one or two. They're just adorable.

This one I just loved because I often get accused of being a chatterbox. But I say it depends on who I'm with...or what I'm talking about...or what I've had to drink.

Honestly, though, isn't that the same for everyone?
Pin It!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Joy. Lighthouse keeper?

Magnet #1140 - Cape May Lighthouse

The sisters, BIL and I did a fun sidetrip out to Cape May, NJ, a couple of years ago. Saw the town, saw the houses, saw the lighthouse out at Cape May Point State Park.

It's a cool lighthouse, built just before the Civil War, but has been automated since the 1940s. Like most lighthouses struggling to survive, they charge a small fee to head up to the top of the lighthouse to see all the views of the Jersey coast. We didn't get to go up to the lookout, but apparently, I missed climbing 217 steps. Darn.

The fact that it's automated kind of makes me sad, because the hermit part of me bets I'd be an awesome lighthouse keeper. C'mon, a remote rocky point along the shore, with a tiny little house, with a great big light that I'd have to monitor at night. (I'm assuming. At least that's what the folks in Pete's Dragon had to do.)

And I'd never really have to go to the actual beach. Just stash me in the little house with a little tv, and maybe an elevator to get to the top, and I'd be good to go. Joy. Lighthouse keeper. It could work!

Though, no offense to Cape May, but I couldn't be there, because apparently, it's one of the best places to go birding during the fall migration. Birding. Um. NO.

Of course, there aren't any birds in my Cape May for those three weirdos below.

Pin It!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

"The Man Who Stole a Leopard"

Magnet #1139 - Leopard

Another one of my Borders Going Out of Business magnets. It's a leopard.

Or, I'm gonna say it's one, because according to this African Wildlife blogpost, it's a leopard because his head's bigger than his body and his spots are rosetta-y. Or, it could be a cheetah because it doesn't really have any spots on his face and has a large nostril.

But we'll go with leopard for the purposes of this blogpost. And yes. I now know way too much about the difference between leopards and cheetahs. Fascinating stuff!

One of my favorite songs off the new Duran Duran album is "The Man Who Stole a Leopard," featuring Kelis. SUCH a good song - all about obsession...with a leopard.

It has the hallmarks of DD style - great melody combined with crazy, gorgeous lyrics. My favorite part is listening to the newscast at the end of the track, with a Brit reader saying, "...the incident has already created much conTROverSY and is now likely to lead to a major investigation. Into the life. Of the man. Who Stole. A Leopard."

The David Lynch-directed video from their Unstaged performance is below. It has the hallmarks of David Lynch style - great direction combined with crazy, gorgeous imagery and graphics.

But, I love the wikistory, because it has the hallmarks of joy style - misunderstood lyrics. Apparently, while writing the song, they were talking about Apple's new OS, and someone asked if they'd installed Leopard yet...and someone misheard and asked if somebody stole a leopard.

And thus the song title was born. C'mon. That's awesome.

Pin It!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Wake me up!

Magnet #1138 - Wham!

Oh, yes. The bottom of my tin of 80s pins magnets has no bounds.

Of course, I was a total Wham! girl. To the point where I was actually surprised when George Michael came out. No. Really.

I loved those guys - and they only put out three albums. I know, even if I own all three cassettes, I totally was surprised it was only three, too. Not surprising, I'm fairly sure I could sing along lyric for lyric, track for track lo, these almost 30 years later.

Using this magnet for today, for a couple of reasons. First, because a huge storm knocked the alarm clocks off, so we really could have used this song this morning.

And second, this whole working freelance gigs remote from home has presented an odd daily challenge for me - finding the best place to get some actual work done. I've used the sofa in front of the tv, the wrought iron patio furniture outside, my bed, the old rolltop desk, my parents' bed, the top of the stairs, and the dining room.

Today, I'm working at the kitchen table with Regis & Kelly in the background, and they're totally using Wake Me Up (Before you Go-Go) as the theme song for one of their segments. It's weird how that song automatically takes me back to the 80s, and yet still does its job as a great pick-me-up song.


Pin It!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Couch potato

Magnet #1137 - Couch potato

This. I miss being this.

Being at my parents' house has severely limited the amount of television I watch any given day. The only tv that gets any play in this household is either Food/Cooking, either PBS station, the news, or that freakin' Dancing with the Stars show.

Oh, and for the love of all that's holy, why are shows like Inside Edition allowed to exist? I could give a crap about John Daly's ex-wife, or the dog on two wheels, or the lady who fell into a sinkhole, or LiLo's latest escapade. And what is the mandate of that show to begin with? Is it news? Is it entertainment? What?

Sigh. Ya'll know I was watching upwards of 30-40 hours of scripted television any time of year. Knew all the latest shows, had an always-packed DVR.

One could argue that it's good that I'm not watching as much television as I usually do.

I would not agree. I miss my shows! There's a certain select few that I've managed to keep up with online, but only a few episodes at a time, and usually only at night. I've gotten so used to watching the small screen on an even smaller screen, it's weird whenever I see any of my shows on a regular tv. Which is like, never, these days.

I miss my channels! I'll admit it. I miss Disney - it's the only channel that I could pop on and never have to think too hard. I miss TCM - it's the only channel that I know will have several movies during the week that I have to watch or DVR. I miss AMC - well, ok, fine, I only miss Mad Men, but that's a different blogpost. But my point is that you get used to your own channels, and now suddenly, you learn that your parents have their own channels, saying, "Oh, we don't go to that channel, joy." Blerg.

I miss holding my remotes! Shut up. Ya'll know what I'm talking about. There's something about holding your own remote, not someone else's.

I miss my baby tv. One of the things people always make fun of me for is my small box TV. With a much TV as I watch, they say, I should have the biggest, most HD TV in the world. They would be wrong. I love my little box.

I miss my DVR! Never running out of things that I want to watch? Hell yes. I miss that. Now it's like, oh, we only go to 8 channels and all of them are reruns of the same cooking show? *stabs eyes*

I miss my couch! Seriously. I do. Enough said.

Anyway, at some point, I'll go back to happily wasting my life in front of my own baby tv. As it is, I'm already gonna have to Netflix whole seasons of my shows in the next several months just to catch up with the last couple.

Oooh, can't wait...I'll bet it'll take a least a month of couch potatoing to catch up!

Pin It!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Keeping score with The Kennedys

Magnet #1136 - Damn straight I keep score

Wait. Doesn't everyone?

I just liked this Anne Taintor magnet when I picked it up a few weeks ago. This chick looks hella ticked off.

It's actually the feeling I've had the whole night watching The Kennedys on Reelz Channel. For whatever reason, it's becoming pretty clear early on that this production about the Kennedy dynasty has decided it wants to keep highlighting all the indiscretions of the Kennedy boys, father and sons.

I love historical miniseries, so I was actually looking forward to the miniseries when I first heard about it. Admittedly, it was mostly because I could see Katie Holmes as Jackie Kennedy pretty easily. And it was her first TV role in a very long time. (What? Ya'll know I'm a sucker for Dawson's Creek.)

I was disappointed once the Real!Kennedys managed to get the show pulled from the History Channel, but it was pretty obvious that the controversy was going to generate even more public interest in seeing it. You knew some channel would pick it up, despite all the bad reviews from the tv critics who had already received their screeners.

I was glad when Reelz Channel picked it up - at least then we'd get to gauge for ourselves what the hubbub was all about. Of course, like many other people I hadn't a clue what Reelz was, much less watched a single show on it. And from what I could gather from Twitter following the #TheKennedys stream, a lot of folks were having trouble even finding the network.

Still, they made a pretty smart decision to buy such a controversial miniseries, introducing themselves to totally new set of audiences.

As far as The Kennedys itself? The Twitter stream proves once again how baffling it is for people to all be watching the same exact show on television, and have completely opposing viewpoints on what they've seen. One Tweet would be positive and the next would say the exact opposite, and so on. @Kennedysmovie, producer/director @joncassar, and even @reelzchannel have been fantastic all night, monitoring and responding to the hashtags, so that's a big win for their social media campaign.

For me, other than the seeming salaciousness of the Kennedy boys, which I don't really doubt, but that I don't really need to see in something that some people will take as fact, The Kennedys is ok entertainment. I can definitely see why it shouldn't have been on History - too bad they didn't figure that out before it was too late.

Tom Wilkinson and Barry Pepper are amazing to watch as Big Joe and Bobby Kennedy. Greg Kinnear and Katie Holmes are simply doppelgangers for JFK and Jackie. I think it's unfair to judge the actors so early on, but I will say that except for Barry Pepper, the Kennedy accents are all over the place.

Production-wise, the overall production design is great. And Jackie Kennedy's costumes are simply gorgeous.

The story itself is a little slow, but I find myself learning little nuggets of history here and there, which is cool. If you're only half paying attention, though the timejumps can be a little disorienting.

Overall, hopefully it picks up soon. We're at Hour #2, and I'm a little worried at how I'll feel having sat through Hours #3-8 by next Sunday night at this time.

Wait. Did I mention Jackie Kennedy's costumes are gorgeous? I'll just concentrate on that for now. That, and figuring out what other shows Reelz Channel has on its dockets.
Pin It!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Enemy mine

Magnet #1135 - Raccoon

I bought this magnet a couple of weeks ago, his eyes are all bedazzly which actually makes him creepy as hell.

All in all, I hate this little guy.

Sure, he's cute when he comes to visit the back door. But really, he's just doing recon for the next time we're dumb enough to put our garbage within reach of his tiny little paws, and he can take it and scatter our refuse all over the backyard.

*shakes fist*

You won't get me, enemy mine!
Pin It!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Gas is expensive!

Magnet #1134 - Gas & Shop Gasoline

Man, when I first came down to NC two months ago, my weekly debate was hmmm, should I go to the gas station with $3.17 unleaded or the gas station $3.18.

Now, it's the $3.55 or the $3.54. It went from $45 to fill up the tank to $50. I shouldn't even complain, because we have a smaller gas tank than other folks in their giant trucks and whatnot.

It's kinda crazy, because it's not even Memorial Day and you just know the prices are gonna head closer to $4. Crazy.

It's why I had to buy this magnet when I saw it the other day. I also found this really great article today from the Washington Post on Getting the Most out of that Tank of Gas. It's for folks planning a roadtrip, but here's a couple of things I learned from the article:

- "Every 5 mph above 60 is like paying an additional 24 cents per gallon, according to the Energy Department." Whoa. I hate this factoid. Hate. Even if I stay within the suggested speed limits (which I won't), the stretch of I-85 between here and Charlotte and here and Greensboro is mostly 65-70!

- “Switch off [the engine] if you can,” he said. “Your engine will generally use more fuel doing this than in normal driving situations.” Ouch. No more idling the car while the parents wait for me to run in and get mail, go to Food Lion, or whatever.

Now. If I can just figure out how to run the car without gas itself, that'd be great.

Pin It!