Monthly Archives: March 2014

Disney Project 2014: Cinderella

Movie: Cinderella

Release year: 1950

My reaction: This is one of those good, solid movies that we have both seen a million times, so we can spend the whole time showing each other our childhood favorite parts and laughing over the inadvertently funny parts.

Fave moment: Do you remember the end where Lucifer (the cat) is keeping the mice from giving Cinderella the key to her door? And Bruno runs up the stairs and chases Lucifer out the window of the tower? And Lucifer falls like 10 stories to his almost certain death? Just saying. That’s pretty gruesome. (If you don’t remember, watch it here.)

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Filed under Children, Drew, Movies, Sentiment

Disney Project 2014: Ichabod and Mr. Toad

Movie: The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad

Release year: 1949

My reaction: Drew was surprised that I have never seen this before – either of these. I liked them a lot, but then, I like the source material. I now understand the Mr. Toad ride at Disneyland a little bit more (although I definitely thought there was a part of the ride where he went to hell – I guess it was just prison). I was very surprised at the ending of Ichabod. I like that they didn’t hold back, even though this is for kids.

B’s reaction: I think he actually watched some of it this week!

For those of you keeping track, we are still a week behind in movies. But I’m not worried!

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Disney Project 2014: Melody Time

Movie: Melody Time

Release year: 1948

My reaction: I think I’m ready to be done with these movies composed of short pieces. Although, I realized I must have had the first short, “Once Upon a Wintertime,” in some other kind of collection, because I’ve seen it before. I just did some wiki research, and discovered that this movie, and the four before it, were deliberately supposed to be light, simple films to bring in profits, so that Disney could return to full-length animations. And thank God for that.

B’s reaction: I think he is also ready to move out of the 40s. (Almost there!)

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The Road Not Taken: A Lesson in English and Life

The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day! 
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 

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This is one of my favorite poems, for three reasons.

1. I love the rhyme and the meter of the poem. I love reciting it. There’s something so musical about the ABAAB and the iambic tetrameter. I loved studying poetry in school, and sometimes I really miss it.

2. I love the message of the poem. But stay tuned. Because:

3. This poem doesn’t actually mean what everyone thinks it means. And here’s your English lesson for today:

In the early 1910s, Robert Frost became friends with another writer, Edward Thomas. They would go for walks through the woods, and Thomas was constantly moaning about the fact that they had taken the “wrong” path – and missed something amazing on another path. Frost wrote this poem in 1915, a sarcastic answer to Thomas’ worry that he was always making the wrong decision.

If you dissect the poem, there are three instances where Frost admits that there is no “better” path:

“as just as fair”
“the passing there / had worn them really about the same”
“both that morning equally lay”

The closing stanza is a sigh from someone looking back on opportunities lost. Frost is gently mocking the narrator (and Thomas) for fretting over missed opportunities, and for not seizing the opportunities that one is presented with.

I freaking love this poem and the story behind it.

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Today was my last full time day at my theatre job. On Monday I start a new job as an Executive Assistant, in an office full of brand new people. This was my choice, my decision, and it was a hard decision, but I still think it was the right decision.

Every new path brings change, something new to learn, and new opportunities for joy.

Two roads diverged in a wood. And I.

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Filed under Beauty, Dreams, Friends, Love, Nature, Nonfiction, Self improvement, Sentiment, Theatre, Travel, Work, Writing

The special beans

I gave up chocolate for Lent this year. It hasn’t been too bad so far. It’s only been 9 days. Only 35 more days to go. (Or something like that.)

There’s plenty of other sweet stuff that I can find to try to fill the void. Including (but not limited to) dried pineapple, popsicles, and vanilla lattes. It’s both a blessing and a curse. (PS. It doesn’t completely fill the void. I cannot wait for post-Easter half-priced Robin Eggs.)

Every year I ponder Lent – what exactly is the reason that I’m giving something up? I have to re-justify what I’m doing, and figure out how to frame it. I have read different theories for how the tradition came about, and I think that the one that suits me best, and makes the most sense, is that I’m making a sacrifice, albeit small, to honor God’s sacrifice for me.

So even if giving up chocolate feels like a superficial thing to do, I suppose there’s a point to it. I don’t know if I’ll necessarily come out the other side of this a better person, but all introspection is good introspection, and I’ve never heard of someone regretting going 6 weeks without eating chocolate.

Now if only my coworkers would stop leaving bowls of it out on their desks all day…

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Filed under Food, Holidays, Memoir, Nonfiction, Religion, Self improvement, Writing

Your picture frames have changed, and so has your name

I’m suffering from this new dilemma. It has to do with Facebook. (Doesn’t everything?)

This isn’t about how the Facebook newsfeed is now all shared articles, video ads, or people sharing photos attached to recipes. (Where are the pithy status updates of yore? I never thought I’d miss them, but I do.)

This is a relatively new dilemma. Here it is: I’ve started seeing photos where, even when I study each face, I have no idea who anyone in the photo is.

Sometimes, while scrolling, I’ll pass the header telling me “So and so is tagged in a photo.” Then I stare at the photo and try to figure out which one of these people is my friend. When I can’t figure it out, I scroll up, go, “Oh yeah, wow, she’s really changed since middle school” (or whatever), and then go on my way.

But it makes me wonder what is the point of being friends with people if:

a) I never talk to them;
b) they never talk to me;
c) I can’t recognize them in a picture; or
d) there are more than 2 degrees of separation between us.

Not to sound exclusive or anything, but if I’m going to waste time on Facebook, I’d prefer to waste it on people I actually know in real life and care about. (Along those lines, I guess I should also excise those people I’ve hidden and thus forgotten about.)

Oh Facebook…what will I worry superficially about when you’re no longer a thing?

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Filed under "Other people", Friends, Memoir, Nonfiction, Not awesome, Technology

Lost and Found

Inspired by a conversation at work today, I thought I would tell you 3 stories of things lost and found.

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1. A Great Time at Great America

I was at Great America with some friends – I think this was in high school or maybe right afterwards. We were walking through the park when we saw a cell phone behind a chain link fence, under a roller coaster. We somehow fished it out, and I really wanted to be a hero, so I called “Mom” in the phone and explained the situation. The mom asked me to take the phone to the information booth at the front of the park, and she would call her son’s friend and tell him where to pick it up.

That wasn’t really enough to call myself a hero, so I didn’t take it to the info booth right away. And before we’d gotten around to it, the phone was ringing and I answered it. It was the kid calling from his friend’s phone, and he was happy that I’d found it, and we all agreed to meet up at the Drop Zone. We gave him the phone back and everyone was happy. What a great day! (In retrospect, yeah, the safe and appropriate thing to do would have been to take the phone to the information booth. But whatever, it all worked out.)

2. Milka: Does a Body Good

While in college at Davis, I was walking across campus when I spotted a wallet on the ground. It had very little info inside, but there was a student ID. When I got back to my room, I used the ID to look up the student’s Davis email address, and I sent her a message. She called me, very happy, and asked if I could possibly drop off her wallet the next day. It was a Friday, and I had no classes, but I said yes. Then she asked if I could drop it off before 10am, because she was leaving for a weekend in Tahoe with her friends. Ten sounded very early (I’m rolling my eyes at myself right now) but I said yes again, and she told me where her office was located.

She was a grad student in the German and Russian department, and I found her pretty easily. She was ecstatic, and offered me twenty bucks. I turned it down. Then she said, “Well, how about some chocolate? I bring this back from Germany, you can’t get it here,” and she gave me a Milka bar. It was plum and cinnamon, except it wasn’t even in English. It was delicious, and Drew and I have looked all over, and never found that flavor again. We still talk about “the best Milka bar.”

3. The Ungrateful Salad Eater

In New York, I worked as a cashier at a little lunch place that served primarily salads and sandwiches. One day, one of the guys who worked there found a purse that someone had left upstairs. I looked through the bag and found a paystub, and called the company and asked for the woman whose name was on it. When I told her that I had her purse, she responded very calmly. “Oh, okay.” Then I told her just to come pick it up whenever.

I noticed, when looking for her ID, that there were bunches of bills stuffed all over the place – it was super messy but there seemed to be a lot of money just haphazardly shoved in there. But I didn’t take any of it. Because morals. And then finally – FINALLY – this woman showed up, looking really bored, and just took the purse and kind of wandered away. No thank you. No gratitude. No relief. No offer of “reward.” And I sort of regretted not taking at least ten bucks for my trouble.

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So there you have it.  Two stories have happy endings; the third is a lesson in doing the right thing even when no one cares what you do.

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Filed under Awesome, Drew, Humor, Memoir, Nonfiction, Writing