Monthly Archives: February 2014

Disney Project 2014: Make Mine Music

Movie: Make Mine Music

Release year: 1946

My reaction: We’re getting into this tradition of pointing out the familiar names in the credits (which, of course, play before the movie). It’s fun. It’s also fun that it’s been like 7 weeks and we’re still doing this. I don’t know if either of us thought it would last very long.

I actually really liked Make Mine Music, which I’ve never seen before, especially after the last two weeks. This is like Fantasia-light. Like a few little musical stories: “Peter and the Wolf,” “Johnnie Fedora and Alice Bluebonnet,” “Casey at the Bat.” It was really fun, and not too long.

I liked that the music that wasn’t chosen wasn’t all classical. It was a good mix of musics and animations. I would watch it again.

B’s reaction: Same same. I’d say he enjoyed it.


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Disney Project 2014: The Three Caballeros

Movie: The Three Caballeros

Release year: 1944

My reaction: is best summed up by this side-by-side comparison:

Halfway through the movie:
Drew: Do you like this?
Me: It’s okay.
Drew: I like this.

Half an hour later, the movie is still going:
Drew: We can stop, if you want.
Me: I’m kind of over it.
Drew: We don’t need over an hour of this.

Sorry, Three Caballeros. There are, as Drew put it, bound to be “some lame weeks” during this project.

B’s reaction: He was having An Evening. So he spent a lot of time walking around crying, or throwing himself on the floor. Alternating between that, and cracking up at some of our antics.

Next weekend, we should go back to watching these in the mornings.

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(A room that is important to you)

In the notes section of my phone, there is a list of writing prompts. The third prompt is “A room that is important to you.”


My parents have a hot tub. The hot tub is just the latest item in a long list of reminders that I don’t live at home anymore.

How could they go from normal parents one day, to hot-tub-owning parents the next?

“But where is it?” I ask my mom over the phone.

“On the deck,” she says.

“What deck?”

“Oh yeah. We added a deck, too,” she says. Her tone is so casual, like she doesn’t realize she’s telling me about major home renovations. “You guys should come visit. You can sit in the hot tub.”

While it sounds amazing, especially now that California is having some actual winter weather, I can’t quite get used to that whole hot tub thing. I mean, I still feel homesick for the way our house was when I was a child – eight and ten and fourteen years old. It hasn’t been like that for almost half my lifetime.

I knew everything was different when I went to college. Not my freshman year, so much, when I still came home all the time and most of my stuff was still up on my bedroom walls. But once I started living in apartments, and my room at home started becoming storage, it was a slippery slope to “I don’t live here at all anymore.”

Probably moving to New York right after college had something to do with that. I didn’t go home that summer, except for a week or so before we got on a plane from SFO to JFK, in mid-August. And then I was gone for three years and the transition became even more complete.

I’ve been back in California for four and a half years. I have never in that time moved back home, and where would I have lived if I had? On the futon couch in the living room, probably. Despite multiple passings-off of my childhood stuff from my parents to me, there is still, inexplicably, more of my stuff in my bedroom, although it becomes more and more hidden among things that aren’t mine. My stuffed animals stick it out, though, sitting on a shelf above the bay window, covered in dust and, I’m positive, spiders. Every time someone suggests I go through them, I shiver and say I will as soon as they’ve all been run through the dryer or something.

The same thing happened to Drew. His room became an office, although his parents had to wait until we came back from New York and essentially stole all his bedroom furniture. But he and I are both in the same position of peeking into our childhood bedrooms and remembering them in a totally different way than they are now.

A few years ago, (after the my-bedroom transition but before the deck and hot tub,) my parents added a bathroom and walk-in closet onto their bedroom. Growing up it was always a point of contention/argument/self-righteousness (depending on one’s mood at the time) that our house only had one bathroom. But after the kids were out and it didn’t matter anymore, they fixed that. It’s good for resale, I guess, but I don’t even want to start thinking about that house being sold to strangers. It’s cool to see the addition, and cool that it happened, and surreal that there’s a whole add-on to the back of the house that wasn’t there when I was growing up.

I guess in a twisted way, that’s the room that is important to me. Because the addition, followed soon after by the deck and the hot tub, is something that I had no part in, I didn’t help at all with the planning, in fact I didn’t even have an idea something was up until it was already going down. And that just means that I definitely, unquestionably, 100% don’t live there anymore. The addition changed my childhood home in a way that putting in hardwood floors, moving the furniture around, and storing all the craft stuff on shelves in my old room does not.

Most of the time this doesn’t bother me too much. If my childhood home isn’t the same, well…neither am I, certainly. And it’s not like I want to stay in one place and never grow or change or move away.

But I’ve gotten so good at writing things down and journaling and documenting and taking photos – I wish I had been better at that at ages eight, ten, fourteen, eighteen. I wish I could remember more about all those summers spent at camp, or my 8th grade graduation dance, or some random trip my friends and I took to Cupertino my freshman year of college. (What the heck were we doing in Cupertino??) My memories of childhood are fuzzy. When I try to remember, I just end up picturing myself now, but like, wearing t-shirts with cat pictures and drawing with chalk pastels and making mix tapes.

On second thought, maybe the 90s are just not an inspiring time to keep constantly at the forefront of your mind. Maybe it’s good enough to know we made it through them unscathed.

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Filed under Being a girl, Children, Dreams, Endings, Family, Fashion, Home improvements, Humor, Love, Memoir, Nonfiction, Sentiment, Writing

Disney Project 2014: Saludos Amigos

Movie: Saludos Amigos

Release year: 1942

My reaction: This is the first in a line of more obscure Disney movies which I have never seen. The next month or so is going to be interesting. Saludos Amigos is only about 45 minutes long. It’s a mix of live action and animation, but no matter the medium, the vague racism is sprinkled throughout. I’m not sure that I was captivated by this one the way I have been by the other, more conventional, Disney films.

B’s reaction: He did watch a little bit, or at least, he sat where he could see the TV and practiced stacking blocks. Good enough for me!

photo (12)You know what this means, right? We’re caught up!

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Disney Project 2014: Bambi

Movie: Bambi

Release year: 1942

My reaction: First of all, when was the last time you watched Bambi? I had forgotten how much I like it. It’s such a pretty movie. The animation is really beautiful. All the animals are just so freaking cute. And it’s fully orchestrated – all the rain drops and steps and falls and leaves blowing – all set to music.

Possibly when Bambi’s mother named him, and then called him “My little Bambi,” and licked his head as he fell asleep…possibly I teared up a little bit.

There were a lot of parenting jokes to be made. Like when all the animals come to see Bambi, and then the owl says “Looks like someone’s getting sleepy,” I was imagining that perhaps Bambi’s mom finds that annoying. Or when they’re out for a walk, and the quail mother says, “And where’s the young prince this morning?” Maybe Bambi’s mom wishes she could say, “He’s right behind me, and you know what? If I did need some time alone, that’s fine too. Why don’t you just parent your own brood of quailings?” Just…you know, haha.

Also, I think our DVD was restored or something, because the disappearing raccoon that I remember from the island (after the fire) was no longer disappearing…

B’s reaction: Oh, I think he really enjoyed it.

photo (11)
It’s getting harder and harder to get a nice calm picture where the DVD, the child, and the parent are all in focus.

Inversely, I have more and more belly pics on my phone.

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Throwback Thursday: Poetry

I wrote this in May of 2003 for a friend who worked in a mall, and used to complain about it occasionally. (It was an Abercrombie, I think.) (The poem is written in blank verse.)

To Work In A Mall

How tepid a life, to work in a mall
To see the same overfed, overbred
crowd, lurching around vendors & candy
machines.  To stand in a doorway & spout
the same rubbish—  “Hey, how ya doin’?  If
I can help you with anything, just let
me know.  Stenciled Ts and flip-flops half off.”
How worthless to fold that same pair of shorts
eighteen times in one day (& you know they
are the same pair because of the crease in
the waistband) because people try them on,
Take them off, drop them on the thin carpet
for posterity—or you—to pick up.
How tiring to be manhandled and
questioned for eight hours a day about
the same things—FAQs—when all you want
is to go down the way to the Starbucks,
& ask them for the strongest drink they have.

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Disney Project 2014: Dumbo


Release year: 1941

My reaction: The longest Disney movie (Fantasia) is followed by the shortest Disney movie. Dumbo weighs in at 64 minutes. Love it. I haven’t seen this movie in ages, but Drew and I both remember it like it was yesterday. I love the beginning, where the baby animals are all being “delivered.” (Ha! see what I did there?) Dumbo is from early enough in the Disney years that there’s still un-PC stuff (like the faceless roustabouts putting up the big top; or the crows, led by Jim Crow). “Baby Mine” is still a tear-jerker, although honestly at that point in the movie my baby mine was freaking out about something so I missed most of the song.

B’s reaction: Eventually I’m sure I’ll have some comment besides “He didn’t really watch this one.” But for now…he still didn’t really watch this one.

photo 2 (1)

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