Category Archives: Movies

A Blupdate for Melissa–AKA Summer is the Cruelest Season


I need a mint.  I just got back from lunch with the parentals where I stole an onion ring off the monster’s plate.  It was tasty, but onioney and breaded and fried.  Yes, I know.  “Duh.”  But my mouth has that icky taste you get from eating onion rings and washing them down not with the superior Dr. Pepper (because yet again, you are trying to wean yourself off) but with water.  Water is always good, but it does not sufficiently eliminate onion ring mouth unless preceded by toothpaste and floss.  I used to secretly make fun of people I worked with who brushed their teeth right after lunch, but right now I think they’re pretty darn smart. 

It was freaking miserable work walking out to my car this afternoon to meet Dad and the Monster.  Texas isn’t the only state where summer just blows-I think that’s just generally how it is in America.  Sure, there are some places where it’s not so bad and where the concept of a “summer sweater” is not a sick joke.  But most people I know, no matter where in the US they live are not having fun this summer.  From out west (hey, Lei-lei) to east (what up, Mel?) everyone is kind of suffering from an excess of heat.  Here in Texas it’s hot and ridiculously humid.  I don’t think it would feel so unbearable today if we hadn’t just enjoyed a rare 5-day gift from God in the form of unseasonably cool temps and lots and lots of rain.  It was so nice I didn’t even need to use the sunshade in my car.  But the rain, rain has gone away and it’s back to normal, loosely translated as oppressively hot and humid and rather difficult to breathe.  Plus my fair skin turns bright red in the heat and I look like a walking, sweating tomato.  Not in the least bit attractive.  April may be the cruelest month, but summer is the cruelest season.

So what else (besides bitching about the weather which could quite possibly turn into some type of thesis topic by the time I’m done)? 

Let’s see…books.  Have read them.  I’ve been randomly picking authors in the fiction section of the library and seeing what I come up with.  There’s an interesting mix of topics that way, though I will admit that I cheat by reading jacket blurbs and pitching what sounds idiotic.  And trust me-I have a beautiful gift for suspension of disbelief, so if I chuck something for being “idiotic” that should say something.  I’ve read some classic and critical darlings, but I also read a generous amount of brain candy-or if you are a little bit of a book snob, and I won’t hold that against you-trash. 

Movies.  Have seen a few.  I will cop immediately to having seen Eclipse in the theatre on opening night with foi and clover.  It was way less sucky than the first movie and a little less sucky than the second.  The movies continue to improve is what I’m trying to say here, but they aren’t exactly supergood.  Although vampire decapitation?  Pretty cool.  More importantly they showed trailers for two movies I really would like very much to see.  The first is called Red, which I gather is based on a graphic novel of the same name.  I’ve never heard of it and haven’t really researched it, so I have no idea.  The point here is not the comicky nature of it.  The point is Helen Mirren as an action hero.  That’s like a gift straight from the cinema gods.  I love Helen Mirren.  I think she’s classy and a terrific actor and she’s sexier than 9 out of 10 much younger women.  The second is called Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, part the first.  🙂  I know my readership here, so when I say I squeed like a teenage girl who just saw Taylor Lautner in person, then you’ll completely understand.  It looks awesome.  So awesome I have to continually bold and italicize the word awesome.  Honestly.  Is it November yet?  No, really.  Because if it were November it would be not hot and that much closer to Harry Potter awesomeness

What else?  Work?  Still busy though it has slowed down somewhat.  This will definitely go in cycles, but it’s nice to not be asking someone for work.  There’s plenty for me to do here now.

So I guess that’s my life all blupdated.  Your turn.


How I Spent My Memorial Day Holiday


So, I know the only updates I’ve done lately have been Glee Reviews (and I’ll try to keep those going for the two of you who read them-not like it’s painful seeing as how much I really love that show/and we’re talking a Buffy the Vampire Slayer type of devotion here), so I thought I’d blupdate up.  I had a good Memorial Day weekend.  I had dinner with two of the parental units and some family friends over at Nick’s.  Nick’s is not actually called Nick’s-I don’t think I even know what the actual name of the restaurant is, but Nick owns it and Nick’s it will always be.  Terrific food.  Terrific conversation.  Saturday, I did a whole bunch of yardwork with the monster and Dad-weeding mostly, but since we haven’t really done much in the way of weeding since last October, it was really bad.  We also mulched, plus there was some type of ick behind the nandinas on the west wall.  Not mushrooms exactly, but something fungusy and nasty, so I dug it out and Dad treated it.  After that I was just tired.  It was in the upper 90s all weekend and really humid and I kind of just wilted.  You know, like a southern flower in the Texas heat.  Heh.  Anyway, we went out to “Lupper,” otherwise known as the meal you eat when it’s too late for lunch, but too early for supper.  The monster wanted to grill but I balked because it was too hot outside and I needed to cool down, at which she pointed out that Dad was the one who would be grilling, not me.  Only one look at Dad’s face convinced her going out was the better option.  Went to bed kind of early that night and slept like the proverbial rock.  Sunday, aside from the usual routine, I went and saw a movie-The Prince of Persia-with mah bestie.  It was not nearly as sucky as I expected it to be (the movie, I mean, not the bestie).  It was the same kind of cheesy, yet hugely entertaining that the Mummy movies are.  I really liked it.  Monday, I spent most of the day with Foi and we had a really great day.  Went to the Half Price Books of Life in Dallas and saw another movie, Letters to Juliet, which I really, really liked.  This guy is really just kinda dreamy.  He has a great smile.  Don’t usually go for blonds, but…  Just saying.  Anyway, good weekend.  Hard to come back to work.  Which segues us to work.  Yeah, this is a really busy job.  Keeps me very busy, which is good because it makes the day go by faster.  But bad because it’s hard to fit in enough break-time for a blupdate.  🙂

Glee tonight, so I’ll post my letter to the show tomorrow…

The Blupdate Where I Catch Ya’ll Up With Stuff


I’m settling into my new job now.  There are actual daily duties and instead of a bunch of nothing to do all day long, I have a bunch of too much to do all day long.  They did warn me–they assured me that come late April/early May, I’d be missing the slow days.  That’s not entirely true, though.  I’d rather have an insanely busy day than one in which I’ve nothing to do all day long except for surf the internet and read bad Buffy or Glee fan-fiction.  I know it’s shocking, but after a while, internet surfage gets dull.  Plus the fan-fiction?  Only 1/10 of the stories I read are actually good, and those just get me frustrated because the writers are good enough to branch out and write their own stuff.  I don’t know why I punish myself so.  But now that I’m busy I rarely surf the internet and I don’t have time for fan-fiction at all.  So all is well.

So, without further ado, here’s my random blupdatey goodness:

  • I’ll start with the one I want to talk about the least.  M and I are over, at least for now.  I won’t get into the whys and blahdy-blahs, mostly because it has to do with his issues more than mine, and this isn’t really the forum to discuss it all.  I will say that he’s a good person, so even if you are tempted to call him names (only because you love me, I know that, Foi-that’s why I enjoy insulting the people I feel have wronged you), please don’t.  It’s not easy or fun for either one of us.  Movin’ on…
  • I’ve been reading a lot of books lately.  I’m always wanting to a big list of what I’ve read going like Chauceriangirl does or terrific reviews like Jehara, but I forget to write my thoughts down as I’m reading and I wind up not thinking of anything to say about them.  Or I return them to the library and forget to write down that I read it.  That doesn’t make a book bad, by the way–forgetting that I’ve read it–it just means I’m a flake and there’s only so much room in my head for stuff before it gets squeezed out by some other random thing.  I once asked a librarian at my library if I could get a list of all the books I checked out and she looked horrified.  “We don’t do that, ma’am.  Once the book has been returned, we are not able to retrieve those types of records.”  In retrospect I get that-it’s a privacy issue and I’m sure Big Brother would be all over that like bees on honey.  I was sort of embarrassed I even asked, especially after the look of shock on her face.  My mind just doesn’t think that way.  Anyway, back to the books.  I just returned a bunch, amongst them some books by Jim Butcher (Dresden Files, which are compusively readable, but have such an extremely involved mythology that if you don’t read them in quick succession, you wind up losing information and doing the ‘huh?’ face), some books by Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dark-Hunter novels and complete brain-candy, but even more compulsively readable than Jim Butcher), a delightful and extraordinarily whimsical fairy-tale by Charles DeLint, and…some other stuff.  I have a new batch at home and I now pledge to write them down when I get home so I can talk about each one.  One I will NOT be talking about is “Shakespeare’s Landlord” by Charlaine Harris.  I picked it up because I like Charlaine Harris’ Southern Vampire series.  But the lead character in this series, Lily Bard, is more along the lines of Kay Scarpetta than Sookie Stackhouse.  I don’t dislike those types of intense character-driven mysteries, but I really have to be in the mood for them and I’m just not, these days.  I got about a third of the way through before I decided I didn’t want to finish it.  I didn’t even cheat by looking at the end.  I just don’t care who did it and I already know Lily was cleared of suspicion, because this is a series, which means our battle-scarred heroine got the bad guy and justice prevailed just in time for book 2.  I have higher hopes for the Aurora Teagarden character by Harris, which I just started last night.
  • The movie “How to Train Your Dragon” is easily the best thing out in theatres right now, and possibly one of the best animated movies I’ve ever seen.  That’s just my opinion, of course.  And as the crude expression goes, opinions are like…well, you fill in the blanks.  I’m sure you’ve heard it before.

This is really all, I think for now.  I’m just not feeling very talkative right now.  But hope all is well with all of you!  I’ll be droppin’ in on my blog buddies, so even if I didn’t comment, trust me–I read.  🙂

The Izzybella Pot-Kettle Update


The blupdate title refers to Chauceriangirl accusing me of being pot-kettley when I complained about how she hasn’t blupdated in like forever.  So, some randomness…

  • King Authur (the cavalier spaniel) was so freaking cute on Saturday afternoon.  The afternoon sun was streaming into the living room windows, and he’d settled in to sleep with the warmth of the sun on his back, when suddenly he spied the refracted light the sun made off his dog tags.  He stood up, growled and then pounced, only the refracted light went away.  He backed up and looked around, and lo and behold, there it was again!  Happiness!  So he pounced again, only to be thwarted.  Wash, rinse, repeat.  He did that for about an hour while the monster and I laughed ourselves silly.  I wish I had video because it was truly adorable.
  • One of my acquaintances emailed me and asked me to house-sit.  Usually I do this for families with pets who would rather not board them.  It works out all around most of the time.  The pets don’t get boarded.  I get however many days peace and quiet, plus get to play with their animals, which lets face it, I’m a sucker and love to do.  And on top of all that, I get money for it.  So it works.  Only after I tentatively agreed, I found out her two children (one teenager and one tween) are part of the house-sitting deal.  Now, first off, I think it’s misleading to call it house-sitting when it’s actually baby-sitting.  House-sitting implies taking in the mail and newspaper daily, watering plants, feeding fish, walking the dog.  It does not generally imply “take care of my two exceedingly talkative and active children.”  Because there’s the rub.  This acquaintance is very charming and I like her very much, but her children are…um…great in small doses.  See, there’s no nice way to put this.  I feel like Cruella DeVille or something.  I like children, but a full week’s worth of baby-sitting sort of freaks me out.  I don’t have children.  I don’t have much experience with children.  The last time I babysat on my own, I was still in high school and 21 Jump Street was my favorite show.  My sister is the one who is a natural with children–I’m…not.  Usually one of two things happen when I meet a child (and I’m not sure which I find more disconcerting)-either the child looks at me and promptly bursts into tears OR it is abnormally affectionate with me and thinks I’m the greatest thing since sliced bread.  It would make sense why the former bugs me.  I mean who wants their face to prompt a massive crying explosion from anyone?  But the latter is freaky-deaky.  And it doesn’t matter how uncomfortable I am or even if I physically pick the child up and return it to it’s owner.  It still comes back all snotty and huggy and clingy.  And I just worry I’m going to drop it or break it or generally damage the merchandise.  This makes me sound terrible.  It really does.  And I’m sure if I had of my own, I would see things completely differently.  I don’t know.  I mean they are above 12, which means they aren’t quite as needy.  But isn’t 12 and older when they start getting sneaky???  So to back out or not back out.  That is the question.
  • I want to see “How to Train a Dragon.”  In 3D. 
  • I’m wearing my red ballet flats today-the ones that are kind of shiny and remind me of Dorothy’s ruby slippers.  I like those shoes.  I bought them because CG made me.  I was annoyed slightly then, but I admit she was right.  CG has good taste in shoes.  CG bought a pair of shoes a couple of weeks ago and left them in the trunk of my car.  They’re super-cute.  And in my size.  And they match a lot of my stuff.  FYI, this is Latin for “if CG doesn’t pick up her shoes soon, izzybella will be wearing them to work.”
  • I found a new author.  Well, new to me anyway.  She’s actually been writing a while.  Her name is Mary Janice Davidson.  She writes a couple of series that I know of–one is about a mermaid working as a marine biologist at the New England Aquarium, and the other is about a mildly vaccuous, shoe-obsessed young woman, who dies, then rises as a vampire, and then turns out to be their prophesied queen.  The first book in the mermaid series was very funny-like laugh-out-loud funny.  The actual literal LOL funny where you are, in all truthfulness, laughing out loud, instead of chuckling softly on the inside.  It’s a quick read and it’s total candy, but I really enjoyed.  I also cracked up at the first book in the queen of the vampires series.  Think Buffy with shades of Sunnydale Cordelia (not saintly LA Cordelia) and a light sprinkling of Sookie Stackhouse.  It’s hilarious how grossed-out she is at drinking blood and how casually she takes her extra-special queen-like vamp powers (holy water?  no effect.  crosses?  no effect.  constant need to drink blood?  not so much.  sunlight?  no effect, well, except that it makes her really sleepy).  I liked it so much, that as soon as I finished it, I drove to the library and checked out all the books in the series.  Again, they’re fast reads, but hugely entertaining.  I’m on the fourth book now and still very amused.  I also read a collection of four short novellas by her…pure fantasy, which you know right away because the short chubby girl in the first story inspires insta-love and lifetime commitment in the tall, hunky, broody Scottish werewolf.  They have the best sex ever, then he whisks her away to his castle in Scotland and marries her.  You know.  ‘Cause that happens all the time.   The only thing that bugged me was the second (third?) story in the novella, which tried to bring a humorous spin to what was essentially rape.  I really don’t have a sense of humor about that, so for me it was an unsuccessful attempt.  I get that both the characters were super-powered (vamp and a werewolf) and that the essentially cranky nature of the woman and sunny nature of the man was all part of the joke, but it was massively annoying to me.  That kind of storyline never goes down well in my book.  But the rest of it was amusing enough and I REALLY like the mermaid and queen vamp series.  So, it’s always good to have more fun stuff to read.

Okay, was this blupdatey enough for you, CG?  I hope so.  I also hope you forget about your shoes, because I think they’d look really good on me.

Randomness July 16, 2009 Issue


I saw Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince Tuesday night with chauceriangirl.  It was a blast.  Before the movie started, we played our traditional game of “Who Would You Do?”  We came up with some really odd choices (for example, Bilbo Baggins or Professor Flitwick) and some truly inspired choicecs (David Tennant’s Dr. Who or Spike).  For many, many years CG’s ultimate who-would-you-do was Spike, but this time, she chose Dr. Who.  You should have seen the look of surprise on her face when she realized Spike had been demoted to the #2 spot.  I think her crush snuck up on her.  It was pretty funny.

The movie started a few minutes late, but it was worth the wait.  I think this is my favorite of all the Potter movies so far.  It was really well done–the actors are all growed up and they let the characters grow up as well.  It was funnier than most of the movies, but also very dark.  It would switch it up fast too, for instance, I was laughing so hard, I was practically crying during Ron’s love potion scene, and then one split second later I was holding CG’s hand anxiously over Ron’s poisoning scene.  Even though I have read the books more times than I can count and knew Ron was going to be fine, I was still anxious.  It was just really well-done.  The only thing lacking was Sunshine’s presence.  It would have been perfect if she’d been there, but at least she was there in spirit.  And she saw the movie that night too, just in her new home town.

I got home very late and had a bit of a difficult time falling asleep.  I think I drifted off sometime around 4:30…  I was due into work by noon the next day, but didn’t even wake up until  11:26.  I called my coworker to tell her I’d be later than noon, but she told me that there was really nothing in the box to check and it was a really quiet day, so I wound up taking the whole day off.  I slept all day-it was AWESOME.  That’ s not something I get to do very often.  I thought I wouldn’t sleep last night for all the sleep I got yesterday, but instead I slept like a rock and woke up naturally (without the alarm clock) about 6:30 this a.m.

Randomness February 7, 2009

  • Mytheatre box office boss is tall.  He is a very tall man.  I am sitting in his tall man chair and it’s very uncomfortable.  I have a new-found appreciation for my office chair at my full-time job.  They bought it for me special.  It’s a very comfortable chair.
  • It’s quiet today here at the box office (hence the blupdating).  We’re almost sold out for tonight’s show and we have only the last 2 rows for tomorrow’s matinee.  That’s a good thing for theatre, bad thing for me.  ‘Cause I’m bored.  See, the chair was uncomfortable last weekend too, but I was too busy to notice.  Today it’s all shhhhyyy and my butt hurts.
  • School started only two weeks ago and I have already bitten off all my fingernails.  Grannie would be so disappointed in me.  She would roll her eyes, fold my fingers under, sigh deeply, and pat my hand.  Sorry, Gran.  But I still love you.
  • They’re rehearsing something upstairs-the youth performers.  It’s very interesting-I can tell when they’re performing and when they’re just chatting and it’s not just volume.  The cadence of their voices loses something when they’re just chatting.  Don’t get me wrong-they’re natural performers.  It’s just that there’s something soothing about stage voice.  You probably have to be a stage dork to get this one…
  • I’m worried about my mom.  Mommy if you’re reading this, you need to call me and tell me how you’re doing. 
  • I saw Push last night.  It was pretty good.  Not great, but good.  Dakota Fanning is gettin’ all growed up.  Her skirt was too short.  Way.  But great hair. 
  • The kids are out of rehearsal now and they’re just goofing off.  This one boy has a terrific singing voice.  He’s in there singing and playing piano.  He has a bright future ahead of him.  Hope he remembers me when he rules the universe.
  • Damn, now one of the girls is dueting with him and she’s even better.  I suddenly feel very untalented.  These kids rock.
  • I’ve been 45 minutes and the phone has only rung twice.  One sale for tomorrow’s matinee-one guy who thought we were a movie theatre. 

Okay, here endeth the randomness.  I’ll find some other way to blow time…

Random Thoughts January 17, 2009 Edition

  • My new motto is “kill them with kindness.”  After the disappointment last week, I felt inspired to email a thank you note to the individual I originally chatted with-the one who resolved my transcript issues.  I sent a very courteous email thanking her for saving me both time and money.  She replied with a you’re welcome and she included the name and phone number of the person who headed up the committee for the particular scholarship I had applied for.  I contacted her, explained the situation, and asked-very nicely-whether she would reconsider my application.  Clearly, she’d heard my story before.  She was a little short with me, but I oh-so-kindly persevered and asked again if she would reconsider.  She hesitantly agreed, but warned me that funds were low and she couldn’t promise anything.  The next day I received both a “declined” letter and an “accepted” one.  I emailed her to ensure I did indeed receive the scholarship and she confirmed that, yes, it was mine.  I am certain had I not emailed the first person I would never have received the scholarship at all.  So inspiration and kindness saved the day.  It doesn’t cover the full amount of my tuition by any means, but it’s nothing to scoff at either.  So there’s some happiness and joy.  Lots of it.
  • I am working at the theatre today.  My new boss, T, just came in and is reorganizing all over the place.  T is nifty.  He’s the cat’s meow.  I don’t mean that sarcastically, by the way-he is truly an awesome guy.  Gonna be good working for him.  I had to type that.  ‘Cause now he knows I have a blog and he knows how to find it.
  • Last week I took a diversity training for my full-time job.  It was supposed to be an all-day affair, but midway through the day, one of the trainers collapsed.  I don’t know whether he had a heart attack or what.  He was only out about 10 seconds, but he was really out of it when he woke up.  Called 911 and they took him to the hospital.  As of yesterday he was still there getting tests run, but he’s doing better; he’s annoying the hospital staff and being perpetually cheerful, so hopefully he’ll be out of there soon.  He’s a great guy and I was really getting a lot out of the workshop.   I’ll have to take it again next time it’s offered and pray for a little less excitement.
  • Speaking of diversity training, I want to see Grand Torino.  L2 saw it the other day and she said it was really good.  It has Clint Eastwood, so how could it be anything other than good?  I’m just saying.
  • My dad solved the digital conversion issue by swapping out the 32″ tube for a 46″ panel HDTV.  My step-monster was all for the conversion box, but this time my dad got his own way.  He doesn’t often-mostly he gives in to whatever the monster wants, but he held his ground this time.  Go dad!  Plus he got a DVD recorder/player, so he’s extra thrilled.  I know most of the world has had DVD players for a while now, but the monster is anti-technology.  She barely discovered the VCR.  So this is big.  Big, I tell you.
  • Starbucks is coffee is yummy.  Here’s a tip.  If you have to doctor it up a lot with cream and sugar, it is not good coffee.  If, however, you need like six packets of sugar and a vat of cream, you might want to invest in better coffee. 

I think this is all the randomness for now.  I’ve been not-so-sneakily doing my blog RIGHT IN FRONT of my new theatre boss.  I have no respect, do I?