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December 2015
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February 2016

Kung Fu Panda 3D is Worth the Price...

Kung Fu Panda 3 is visually stunning.  I honestly thought that the price of Star Wars 3D was not worth it.  Yesterday, I paid like $16 a ticket to see Kung Fu Panda 3 in 3D.  Sometimes, living around rich people sucks.  They clearly have money to spend that the rest of us have to think about.  Nowhere was that more apparent than while waiting, we shopped the nerd store, and there's a $299.00 Batman Utility Belt.  If you have $300 to spend on a Batman utility belt?  You should probably question your priorities.

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Anyway, the movie is visually stunning. The opening scene is just beautiful to watch.  So if you have a few extra bucks, go to the 3D version.  I told my son, who is afraid of sloths, that the pandas look a little slothlike, so he should be warned.  I mean, it's not "The Revenant" but if you find sloths scary, this might be troublesome.

Cute movie, and I passed up my two favorites playing  at the Stanford Theater:  Notorious and Casablanca.  Together!!  I'm running out of friends who want to live in another era with me, but my son will do anything for Popcorn, so Pandas it was! I did have a great dinner with a friend who wanted me to believe in myself as an author again and forced me to Wal Mart at 10 p.m. to show me that I'm a real writer.  You gotta love friends like that, and I'm telling you, Wal Mart at ten p.m. is an experience to behold!

 

 

 


My favorite Princess Di outfit:

This picture was in an article this a.m.  I didn't read the article, but I just LOVE this outfit.  I always have.  

 

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They had just announced their engagement (at Balmoral) and all that hope for her getting her prince was there.  It was a different era.  The world was full of hope and good music in 1981.  I don't really mind getting older, but I do mind that the world isn't as happy as it was in 1981.  We didn't know everything like we do now.  Everyone has a camera and there are no secrets.  I, for one, miss the mystery.


Stop giving sociopaths your pity: They thrive on it and use it to their advantage!

I was reading an article this morning (can't find it now) but here's another version of it.  Richard Dreyfuss, who is playing Bernie Madoff in an upcoming show, says that he doesn't think Bernie cared when his sons (BOTH OF HIS SONS!) died.  He says this, most likely because he's playing a sociopath.  Bernie Madoff is a sociopath.  He doesn't have feelings.  He doesn't care that he destroyed many, many lives.  (Including his own family's life!)  He is a textbook sociopath.

http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/confidential/dreyfuss-bernie-madoff-didn-care-sons-died-article-1.2513091

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When reading the comments, I was shocked how many people tore town Dreyfuss for saying this.  Do you know what sociopaths, like Madoff, do with your pity?  They earn your trust to get more of you.  More of your money.  More of your trust.  More of your loyalty.

Then, you offer them your pity (like you're the only one who gets them and they're really not all that bad) and they use you to escape justice.  Case in point?  This idiot in California who was teaching at the jail and allowed some violent convict to sweet-talk her and escape. Now HE is on the loose and she is sitting in a California jail.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3422079/Woman-taught-Southern-California-jail-aided-violent-inmates-escape-kind-relationship-one-men.html

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Do you see how it works?  You pay the consequences instead of them.  Welcome to the world of  the sociopath.  And they are not as rare as you might think.  Nor are they all in jail.  In fact, many CEOs are probably successful sociopaths.

Here's her dreamboat who is now on the loose:

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Don't feel sorry for sociopaths.  They will use it to their advantage.  Dreyfuss is right.  Look at the wake behind Bernie Madoff.  All destruction.  Look at his lack of remorse.  Why would you feel sorry for someone like that?  Take one look at the grandparents who saved their entire life for money that Bernie spent.  People's naivate allows monsters like this to flourish. 

I think it's important to note that Bernie's sons never forgave him. There's a reason for that.


#TheBachelor Chris Soules Says He's Looking for Love Again...

http://www.buddytv.com/articles/the-bachelor/former-bachelor-star-chris-sou-58651.aspx

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Chris Harrison suggests he be flexible on the whole "move to Iowa" thing, but that's where the guy lives.  I suggest "FarmersOnly.com" -- he needs a nice corn-fed girl.  I really thought he blew it with who he picked last year, and when they blow it, I don't think they deserve another shot.  Not to mention, he was a BORING bachelor, so I hope they're not considering bringing him back.

He should be required to find someone in the midwest.  He needs his people, not someone who wants to escape.  Admittedly, I'd want to escape.  That is not the life for me. It was clearly not the life for the gal he picked.  That was sad. I thought all along that she was playing him.  

Would you want to see Chris again?  


Tiger Mom Claims she was a Success!

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3419677/Tiger-Mom-s-tough-love-worked-Five-years-Amy-Chua-published-Battle-Hymn-Ivy-League-educated-kids-proof-strict-upbringing-pays-say-plan-raise-children-way.html


First off, I know lots of Tiger Moms.  I think they are fabulous people.  Their children are lovely and respectful.  Their kids are better-educated than mine and spend a lot more time on homework. None of this will make me a Tiger Mom. It's not in my nature. I want my kids to be happy and while Tiger Mom's kids look happy, I will say one thing:  Harvard Professor Tal Ben-Shahar says that we should not confuse happiness for relief.

From his book and the "rat-racer" personality, "The reason why we see so many rat racers around is that our culture reinforces this belief.  If we get an A at the end of the semester, we get a gift from our parents...We learn to focus on the next goal rather than our present experience and chase the ever-elusive future our entire lives...

Once we arrive at our destination, once we attain our goal, we mistake the relief that we feel for happiness." 

I married one of these Superstars.  A straight-A student, in the marching band,  a collegiate all-star gymnast, a Stanford Masters in Engineering Management, etc.  Here's the thing about super achievers (and I'm not saying this is true of Tiger Mom and her kids) but you have a hard time being present.  Turning OFF the goals and just enjoying a vacation day at the beach. It's okay to consider it a vacation without climbing something.  Just saying.  Now, I'll be the first one to tell you that I'm an otter.  And I'll play and have fun BEFORE I do the work.  So I'm the antithesis of a Tiger Mom.  

Still, my kids are all doing their own thing.  They're happy.  They're contributing members of society.  Granted, they're not Harvard Lawyers, but do we really need more of those?  

We probably do.  I'm glad she did her job as a mom, but so did lots of people whose goal wasn't Harvard.  The problem is, it makes people less valuable in this estimation.  Like her kids are worth MORE than mine because they went to an Ivy League school.  I just don't believe that way of thinking.  We are all here for a reason, and this woman's was to raise brilliant kids.

But Steve Jobs and Bill Gates created success without college degrees.  All I'm saying is let's appreciate people's individuality and not worship at the land of, "My kid is better than yours!"

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Besides, I got a picture of my kid under an Osprey helicopter this week, and I think that's cooler anyway.  I'm a success too, Tiger Mom.  I guess it depends on your definition. 


Andrew Davies: My Spirit Animal

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I saw that he had written the screenplay for the current War & Peace, and I thought, that man has written literally EVERYTHING I love that is produced for the screen.  I cannot believe the complex stories that he can bring to the screen and so well.  I was reading through his list of credits, and I think I've seen most of it. 

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0203577/#writer

Here's two for starters:

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That's enough of a resume, but it doesn't even touch on his work.  Is anyone watching "War and Peace?"  So far, so good!  Paul Dano is great in the role and it's sumptuously filmed.

If I was going to build an idol and worship at its feet?  I think it would look a lot like Andrew Davies.


Robin Williams' Napa Estate Sells

I love Napa -- wine country because it's the consummate California landscape.  It's my favorite type of landscape -- the rolling foothills dotted with oaks.  There's just nothing that soothes me more.  I'm not big into wine (I don't drink it at all) so I wouldn't ever pay for that view when I'd be just as happy back in Saratoga or even Hollister.  I'm also not into big houses.  They're too much work.  Even with a staff.  You still have to manage them.

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It sold for $18 million, significantly below the $35 million original asking price.  I think the house is meh.  But I'd probably like the servant's quarters that I'm assuming is in the back. https://www.yahoo.com/celebrity/robin-williamss-napa-estate-sells-for-181-164635629.html

I took this picture on my hike the other day near my old house.  Sigh. 

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What's your favorite place to be?  


Toxic people & emotional abuse: Jenner Style

Kylie Jenner posted this today about her brother as a "joke."  I've been around toxic people. This is what they do.  They try and destroy someone's emotional well-being, so that they feel good about themselves.  Narcissism is on the rise.  In the Jenner/Kardashian family, it seems very prevalent.  If you don't live up to someone ELSE'S vision for you, it does not make you worthless.  If you think your brother is a nightmare, what good does it do to convince others of your 'truth?'  None.  It's toxic behavior.  

 

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She got 48,550 likes for this?  For calling her brother a demon?  Seriously?  That's abusive behavior.  Rob has gotten overweight and taken on a lot from that family.  I hope through trauma therapy, he learns that his family has issues and he's better off away from them. In any dysfunctional family, there is a scapegoat that everyone picks on.  Sadly, I think Rob is that person and this family seems extra toxic. 

If you don't think so, imagine posting that about someone you love and get back to me.  


#TheBachelor -- Week 4 My Recap

"Vegas is a place where you do find love."  No, it's not.  It's a place where you find viral infections, but let's get started.  The Bachelor is in Vegas -- let the drama begin!

The twins -- who share one brain -- were raised in Vegas.  That was not nice.  I'm snarky tonight.  Sorry, girls.  You're going home, that's a good thing, right?  The-Bachelor-Ben-Higgins

The girls go nuts seeing their names on a light-up sign.  It's so reminiscent of the puppet show edition of "Burning Love" -- A Bachelorette parody.  Everyone goes nuts for a puppet show.  We open in the gym with the twins on the same treadmill.  They should really be on the Utah version of the Bachelor -- someone looking for two wives might be better for them.

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Jojo gets the one-on-one and they get taken out by a wind gust from the helicopter.  This is entertainment. They have great chemistry and keep kissing.  This sends Olivia -- who is planning her wedding into full "Single White Female" mode.  Especially when she finds out she's on the next group date. 

Jojo uses her date to whine about all her insecurities because of her last boyfriend.  What about going on a date?  Don't people have fun anymore?  Or do they just vomit up all their issues? I guess you are on a fast track to love. Ben shuts her up by kissing her.  And she gets a rose.  Score one for chemistry. Now they're on the top of a building watching Fireworks.  Man, the producers have run out of creativity.

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With each explosion, a little piece of Olivia's heart breaks off.  

GROUP DATE: Talent Show

The twins are grateful for their mom enrolling them in Irish dance.  Olivia grabs up the sparkle striptease outfit, and she's going to do "whatever it takes." The puppeteer lets them know that Vegas audiences are the new "Night at the Apollo."  

 The twins' Riverdance is actually really impressed.  I'm swayed.  Jubilee plays the cello.  Is there anything that girl can't do?  I have such a girl crush.  I want to be her!

The grand finale is Olivia popping out of a cake in a cape, sparkly bikini and a complete lack of talent. To all this awkward would be a compliment. Then, she has a panic attack -- which she does well. Poor thing. She actually looks gorgeous while she has it.  That's something!

Caila gets some alone time and turns into a "tigress." Lauren H kisses a puppet -- and it's sweet.  She and Ben are cute together.  Olivia needs to talk.  She's mortified.  Her explanation is actually worse than the "dance." He tells her she shouldn't be embarrassed and then, one of the twins "steals" him. 

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Then, Lauren B comes along and it feels all over again.  They are so cute together and he just instantly goes toward her.  She lets us know she's terrified.  They actually have a real conversation and it feels the most normal.  The, we go back to Olivia's neuroses. 

The rose goes to...Lauren B.

ONE-ON-ONE with BECCA:

Becca receives a wedding gown and they head to the Little White Chapel -- no doubt to be married by Elvis or the like.  -- oh no, he's ordained and they're going to marry other people.  They marry a very sweet couple and my daughter tells me if this is her wedding, please just do her in then and there.  LOL Apparently, she does not want to get married in Vegas.  

Wow, they married a ton of couples.  Then, they go to the NEON museum, which I'm pretty sure is haunted.  I think I saw it on one of my ghost shows.  LOL  Oh, on a sidenote, I have a friend who moved into a haunted complex and the stories have been way fun. 

Becca bores me.  Can you tell?  I'm wishing for a Supernatural event. 

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Becca gets the rose.  Snore.

 The twins get a "two-on-one" -- probably so Ben can put an end to this madness. They, of course, think he's going to send one of them home.  I'm going out on a limb and saying, I think he sees an easy way to drop them off without airfare.  Nope, he's sending Haley home -- or leaving her there, since they're at her mom's.  Emily goes off in the limo and leaves her sister behind.  That sucks. Finally though, we see the real them and not just the vapid act they put on.

 At the cocktail party, Olivia steals him yet again for her latest version of "Canklegate."  Ben has had it with her neuroses.  As we all have.  Go. Away!

Going home:  Amber (good, she was a mean girl this season who picked on Jubilee -- girl, she's a Vet, she could take you out!) She curls up in a fetal position and comes to the conclusion that television is probably not the place for her to find romance.  

Rachel -- who hasn't gotten enough screen time for us to miss.

Next week they're showing Jubilee becoming a little undone.  This is not what I want to see.  : ( 


Grease Live!

Who is excited for "Grease" live?  My daughter watches "Grease" once a month at least.  "Dirty Dancing" probably once a week.  (That's her favorite) So it's something we can share together.

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I'm not big on the live shows on TV and haven't made it through one, but this is one I will watch because "Grease" was the first movie I fell in love with and went back to the theaters over and over again. I love the cast.  Julianne Hough as "Sandy"; Aaron Tveit as "Danny"; Vanessa Hudgens as "Rizzo"; Carly Rae Jepsen is "Frenchy" and the original Frenchy (Didi Conn) will now be playing "Vi" the waitress she has a scene with in the original.  Before "Beauty School Dropout."  Anyway, I'm happy the complete cast is fantastic -- including Jan Brady as Mrs. Murdock and "Boyz II Men" as the Teen Angel.  Should be a rocking good time!

Here's the complete cast: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4366830/fullcredits/

 

 

It airs January 31st.