Category Archives: entertainment

The Hunger Games

Let me state for the record: science fiction isn’t my thing. At all.

But when person after person declared it didn’t matter, I would LOVE The Hunger Games trilogy, I decided to give it a try. Worst case scenario is I hate them and stop reading, right?

Well that didn’t happen. I’ve spent late night after late night reading through these books, including a three-hour-reading marathon last night, biting my nails (which I only do when I read), and literally gasping out loud at plot changes I didn’t see coming.

If you haven’t read it yet and are thinking you want to, know this: the first half of book 1 was just interesting to me. I was intrigued and wanted to keep going, but I wasn’t totally hooked yet. Don’t give up…because after you get into the second half at all, you’ll be physically unable to put the book down.

I immediately started reading book 2, and felt that its start was a bit on the slow side, too, though that scarcely mattered now that I was so hooked on the characters and knowing what would happen to them. Book 3 is my least favorite, but I still loved it and couldn’t wait to see how the story unfolded.

The first movie comes out March 23, and from what I’ve seen in the trailer, they’ve stayed pretty true to the book.

Have you read them? What did you think? I’m not going to give away the plot, but I was pretty happy with how everything was resolved, given the situation.

PS Also, can I beg of America to not turn this into Twilight by calling groups of people “Team Katniss” vs. “Team Peeta” or “Team Peeta” vs. “Team Gale?” I’m sorry, but that’s so dumb. And I know it’s already happened, but let’s just stop the madness.

Bald = Beautiful

It’s a fact: some men lose their hair earlier than others. And rather than pretend it’s not happening, I think it’s really hot when a young guy decides to just shave off what’s left of his hair and sport a bald head with confidence. I realize it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but it is mine.

Lucky for this guy:

Actually, it’s the bald head + the few-days’-growth-beard that looks so good together (note: giant beards not ok).

And here are some other examples, in case you’re doubting me.

In the athlete, er, rather, Cardinals category we have:

1. Skip Schumaker


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2. Matt Holliday


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3. Albert Pujols


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And then in the musician category, there are many, I’m sure, but being as how I’m a mom and I have other things to do today besides look up pictures of hot balding guys, I’ll have to stop at one, and he’s my fave:

Chris Daughtry, aka the best singer to ever come out of American Idol. Who just happens to look a little like a rocker version of my husband.

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And for you superfans like me, here’s a little behind-the-scenes video of Daughtry making a new video, for the new album being released in a couple of weeks…

Now. I need to go do something respectable and resembling work for the rest of the day to make up for this little indulgence.

Miscellany

1. I’ve lived here twelve years and never been to The Pageant. Until last night, that is. My sister and I went to see Matt Nathanson and it was so, so good. He is incredibly entertaining and sang everything I wanted to hear except one song. In addition to his own stuff, he played parts of so many fun songs from other artists that the audience could sing along to. Plus, The Pageant is incredible. And free parking? Sometimes I forget how awesome this city is.

Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the opening act, Scars on 45, making their first appearance on Matt’s tour. I fully expected to be feeling like “let’s get this over with so we can see Matt,” and that was not at all how I felt. They were amazing, and very much reminded me of Oasis or other bands from my college days. Give them a listen here and here, for a song from Grey’s Anatomy.

2. Moving on to something less interesting than a concert in an awesome venue, but given that I am a SAHM, this is more like my real life: these biscuits have changed my life.

3. If you get fever blisters, as I have since I was about 12, you know how painful and gross and ugly they are. I’ve been taking L-Lysine (an essential amino acid) since college when I get one, and I seriously think it does a better job at cutting them short than any other remedy I’ve tried (and believe me, I’ve tried everything). But after reading this article, I think I’m going to just take one Lysine a day all the time, which I’ve never done, to see if it cuts down on the number of fever blisters I get. Just thought I’d throw that out there for any of you who also suffer from these.

4. If you haven’t signed up for Ebates yet, now would be a great time, with holiday shopping coming up! When you sign up using this link, you and I both get $5 credited to our accounts when you make your first $25 purchase. This is no joke – I’ve described how it works here, and since last fall, I’ve earned $219. Cash. Sent to my Paypal account or via a check.

5. There’s a big flap over this photo of Christina Aguilera…


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…and for good reason.

No, I’m not criticizing her, as Kelly Osborne has, for her weight gain. It should come as no surprise that she’s not a size 0 anymore…she’s had a baby, been through a divorce, and hey, she’s in her thirties now. Not excuses; just reality…if she wants to be tiny, the work is different and harder now than it was 10 years ago. Good for her for having the confidence to wear whatever she wants. But I have to think that it hurts her feelings when people talk about her being fat.

So Christina, a bit of unsolicited advice: fire your horrific stylist. Get someone in your camp who knows how to dress your body for what it is now. You can still look hot when you’re not wearing hot pants. In fact, you’d look hotter if you were wearing pretty much anything else. I only watched “The Voice” a couple of times last spring, but every time I did, I thought, “Why is no one telling Christina that she shouldn’t dress like that anymore?”

6. I don’t watch many shows, but I am loving “New Girl.” Zooey Deschanel is weird and funny.

7. Go Cardinals!!

An Investment in Our Family’s Future Entertainment.

I’ll just come right out and say it: I hate school pictures. They’re stiff and staged and generally, don’t show a kid’s true personality. And the backgrounds are just hideous.

BUT.

You wanna know what’s hilarious? Getting together with your siblings, as adults, and looking through everyone’s school pictures year by year. And we want to give our kids that opportunity, to make fun of each other and themselves in years to come.

Because I would feel like a horrible parent if I didn’t buy some school pictures, Matt and I discussed it and we’re getting the cheapest package there is, which is literally 6 pictures of each kid (so far, our kids have never swapped pictures with classmates, and we’re 4 years and 2 elementary schools into this, so I’m feeling pretty secure about not buying 87 wallets) + a class picture (also very fun in the future). So we’ll have record of each year in an album, but none for the wall, which I wouldn’t put up anyway.

To make it even more fun, I let the boys choose the background they wanted. In the past, I’ve picked it, going for something as tame as possible, but not this year. This year, each of them has chosen the red laser background, which goes with a half-body pose instead of a head shot. I didn’t even try to talk them out of it…I just let them pick.

I figure it’s going to make 15 years from now even funnier and more awkward.

And for a really funny read on school pictures, go over to Are We There Yet? Hilarious.

PS…a little “Picture Morning 2011″ update. I forgot to set my alarm. I woke up in time, as Bennett was already awake and he is NOT quiet in the morning. Or any other time of day for that matter. But I digress. The morning was crazy. B decided he did, in fact, want to take his lunch instead of giving me my one-day-a-week reprieve from lunch making (something about the sides being offered with the pizza not being acceptable? Grr.). A new policy was established this morning, stating that Tuesdays are eat-at-school days UNLESS the head chef has been notified the day before.

It’s 7:30am. Things can only go up from here.

Dear Mister President,

Last week, during my amazing alone time, I was in the car when some news came on. The first thing I heard was a soundbite from your speech that day from somewhere in Iowa or Michigan.

You said, in effect, that there is nothing wrong with our country. Balancing that with a statement about how what’s wrong is our politics.

I agree that our politics are a hot mess, but I flat-out disagree that there is nothing wrong with our country. There is SO much wrong with our country, but you and I would NEVER see eye-to-eye on that, so I’m not even going there.

That evening, over a leisurely dinner with my husband, I mentioned your speech. He agreed wholeheartedly with my sentiments.

Fast-forward to later that night. Husband was lying on the couch flipping through the channels, and I was painting the laundry room, right next to the living room. And yes, when I get time alone, I paint rooms. I’m crazy like that.

He stopped on a channel, and it only took a moment for me to realize what he was watching, though we’ve never even seen an episode. He watched it for a few more minutes, and I hollered, “Remember earlier today, when Obama said that there’s nothing wrong with America? This is exhibit A.”

Mr. President, exhibit A:


(photo credit, though who would want credit for this I don’t know)

The show “Jersey Shore.” It’s everything that’s wrong with America, all wrapped up into an hour-long (or is it half-hour? I don’t even know) package of filth and raunch. That show is so dirty you’ll feel like you’ve contracted a disease just by sitting on your couch and watching it.

So, Mr. President, I implore of you: please stop telling people there’s nothing wrong with our country. It couldn’t be further from the truth, and if you insist on talking about it more, I’ll have to forward you an episode of “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” as further evidence.

Sincerely,
A Taxpayer

PS…This is HILARIOUS! A&F offering to pay The Situation NOT to wear their clothing!

Oh, to Have the Memory of a Child

Granted, he’s seen this movie more than a few times since its release last summer. But still…it’s not like he watches this daily or even weekly. And it’s been a while since he’s seen it at all!

So last week, when Jack Henry started rattling off this scene from Toy Story 3, I about died laughing. And then did what any good mother would do: grabbed my camera. Or in this case, my phone, which takes pretty decent video.

Jack Henry’s transcript (he’s doing the lines of a couple of different characters):
“We all knew Operation Playtime was an longshot (like this one). But we all said this job wasn’t about getting played with, it’s about being there for Andy. We know. But we can try again right? I’m callin’ it guys, we’re closin’ up shop. Wha?? That was our last shot!”

It’s actually pretty close to the real thing!

Commercials

If your kids watch any TV, you’ve probably, at one time or another, heard them repeat commercials. It happens here all the time, particularly after watching sporting events. For instance, last summer the kids all had a couple of favorites that they repeated from Cardinal baseball broadcasts, since the same ones play over and over again.

Last weekend’s basketball viewing was no different. They watched a LOT of games with us, and there were definitely a couple that stood out: the new iPhone series of commercials. Have you seen them? They probably would have been much less attention-getting if I hadn’t just gotten one (the cheaper 3G version), but I have to admit that they’re catchy. Here’s one of them:

Here’s Jack Henry’s version:

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And these are currently Bennett’s favorite series of commercials. So much so that when we pulled into a small strip mall parking lot, and he saw a State Farm office in the mall, he excitedly (and confusedly) asked me, “Are we going to State Farm?”

The rest of them are on YouTube if you need some quick entertainment. Honestly, I think they’re all pretty funny, especially the one of the couple on a date where she tells him he’s making her head numb! (Disclaimer: we aren’t even SF customers.)