Rerun: Childhood Cinema
A brief psychological analysis of some of my favorite childhood movies.
A sweet but sassy red headed orphan gets her ‘big break’ by spending a week in billionaire Daddy Warbuck’s home. Only doing this for his image, and preferring a boy orphan, Daddy Warbuck’s eventually (with Grace’s help) gets to realizing that money isn’t everything. He manages to get Annie away from the girl orphanage run by Miss Hannigan, an alcoholic that eludes to abusive tendencies…but hey..she’s played by Carol Burnett so it’s all in good fun. Miss Hannigan throws herself at every service man… but what chance does she have at love being the sole adult in a ridiculous child-to-adult ratio? Her jailbird brother and his lady friend pull Miss Hannigan into a locket scheme to get $50,000 as Annie’s fake bio parents…which eventually blows up in their face. All is forgiven for Miss Hannigan…
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It’s that time of year again where people are making resolutions on the 2013 New Year. Many will make diet promises….but what of the skinny folk? I know what you’re thinking….”Shut up with your little skinny girl blog post…I don’t want to hear it!”…but hear me out on this one. Just like being on the ‘thick’ side, the ‘scrawny’ side has its own unique experiences. It takes a lot of backbone to bring this up….and I have plenty of protruding backbone. So, let’s start with the comical and blend in the psychology.
Take a recent exchange:
Former Boss: “Look at you….you’re still a skinny bitch aren’t you?”
Could you ever replace the word ‘skinny’ for ‘fat’ in this sentence and still continue a friendly conversation? Just sayin’
Here’s another example:
“You’re so skinny…you make me sick.”
Again…replacing the word ‘skinny’ with ‘fat’ would earn you a well-deserved slap…but…
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My Daughter……..The Bag Lady
Written By: Andrea Angileri
Kids come with stuff….we know this….we deal with this. Car seats, diaper bags, strollers…. lifeline security items. Whether or not they are hopelessly attached to a pacifier, a blanket, a doll, a stuffed animal or any other attachment item, we’ve seen it or have been held hostage to it. If you are not around the child species often, you can imagine the neurotic state you’d be in if someone took away your smartphone or pack of cigarettes and the restoration of peace when they tossed them back to you. I have now made a terrible stereotype that childless people have smart phones and smoke and have great passion about this.
I never really promoted security items, aside from pulling a few ‘plugs’ and yanking at a couple blankies, I just never introduced them to my kids. Pacifiers are great for ‘non-nutritive’ sucking for the first several months and help reduce the risk of SIDS in infants. Dolls or stuffed animals coincide with ‘animistic thinking’ where tots and preschoolers think that their inanimate objects have feelings…that ‘s why they like Thomas the Trains with their smiley faces and dolls that blink….ya like that fancy talk?…that’s about $8,000 in student loans talkin’. My kids did have the occasional hit of a pacifier, my daughter even used to steal them from younger infants. It might be bullying, but let’s call her ‘self-aware of her own powers’. Since I never had official attachment items, my children had no choice but to resort to me as their sole source of comfort. Why clutch onto a blanket at night when mom’s leg conforms to my body?
I have pictures of my son clutching onto a piece of bread at a wedding reception. During dinner, on the dance floor, clutching onto grains all night. How astute was he to learn that carbs would be there for us in the most desperate of times. My second son tended to have a couple Thomas the Train cars in his hands often. My third son really likes snacks and doesn’t discriminate. My daughter? Well, we’ll get to her in a sec.
Once I researched the ‘down’ sides of security items. I thought for sure I would find something about how they were a bunch of bologna and should be banned in America. It was the most frustrating 10 minutes of my time. All I could find was stuff that said it was ‘developmentally appropriate’. It was hard to admit that I was completely overreacting and possibly wrong.
So….the daughter? She was starting out strong with only occasional paci swiping, but now at the age of 3, she is a full blown hoarder. I know her type….the little girls who are the ‘gatherers’ and the boys who are the ‘hunters’….it’s all historically ingrained. The little girls who take the Fisher Price Little People and will not admit defeat….not until every plastic figure fits into their arms. Blankets, pillow pets, dolls, lunch bags full of My Little Ponies, sure, but sometimes she carries around things that don’t even make sense. The other day with her usual cuddly crap she insisted carrying a rock, a rosary (far stranger if we were not Catholic), a popsicle craft stick. Her items are starting to be random. She freaks out if she drops something and usually won’t let you help her. What a good analogy of what we super women look like. We grapple at jobs, opportunities, family, sanity….we hold it all tight and don’t want help. Then we later look like little bag lady 3 year old girls crying in a batch of snow because it is all so heavy and we are tripping over it.
My husband says that she is like me…holding onto stuff. I don’t consider myself too attached to stuff because I usually leave the house without a purse…but then there is the ‘crap room’ (see ‘I’m a Tree Killer….and the Lorax is Pissed). I’m pretty sure my daughter’s stash carrying has something to do with the fact that I didn’t even attempt to breast feed her because…to rephrase my earlier thought….’If I’m having a fourth one…something has GOT to give!’ Who knows. Hopefully it is all a phase. I mean whoever heard of a girl liking ‘stuff’ turning into a woman….materialistic’? ‘shop-a-holic’? hoarder?….oh dear….It really can go either way….either she names each of her 100 or so handbags or she names each of her 100 or so potholders that have sentimental meaning and cat urine on them. You can’t take it all with you Maria….though she’s so headstrong…she’ll find a way to.
Written by: Andrea Angileri
This could really be one of a series and include titles like ‘Parenting…FAIL!’, ‘Timeshare…FAIL!’, or ‘Compassionate Wife….FAIL!’, ‘Crock Pot…FAIL!’, etc. etc. , but for now we are looking at the art of karaoke combined with the art of unsuccessfully surprising someone with news of a firstborn baby. The story of how I told my husband I was pregnant for our first born.
Karaoke was popular in the late 1990’s, since American Idol would not come out until 2002, this was way before people who sang karaoke cared about what Simon Cowell audience members at the local pub would think. Karaoke was something for pure entertainment enjoyed by the tone deaf and future Kelly Clarkson’s in all of us. If you’ve sang karaoke before you understand how someone can go from ‘Hell no, I’m not going up there to sing’ to ‘Let’s go back and do another one!’
Another thing that was popular in the late 1990’s were very ‘poppy’ Country songs….think Shania Twain, Dixie Chicks, maybe even Garth….you got it. I blame the commute to college with a country music fan, but no complaints…I had even succumbed to ‘gon’ country’. Country songs go as nicely with karaoke as my coffee goes with my Zen.
I decided to take Shania Twain’s lyrics to ‘No One Needs To Know’ and switch them up. I know…it’s not ‘Man, I Feel Like a Woman’…so you probably have never heard of it. Anyways, instead of saying, “I’m not dreamin’ or stupid’…but boy I’ve been hit by cupid”…I’d say “I’m not dreamin’ or stupid’…but Joe guess what I’m pregnant!”. It could be BRILLIANT! It would satisfy my occasional obsession with doing things creatively and ‘p-e-r-f-e-c-t-l-y’.
My turn was up and I put on my best extremely mediocre karaoke performance and got to the line and NAILED it! I came off the stage and saw Joe blankly smiling at me….The problem?…. Joe didn’t hear me…in fact, he misunderstood what I said. He thought I said, “Joe..I’m going to give you a backhand!”. A backhand? What? Why would I take this moment to announce I wanted to slap my husband? We were only newlyweds.
The table next to ours did hear me and were excited for me, these unknown ladies that I would later see ironically in different places and reshare the event in later months. I reiterated the happy ‘baby’ news and we were all happy, I would go on to have a wonderful pregnancy, give a long but happy birth to a son and have three more babies down the road. I would do the ‘I’m going to be a big brother’ unpeeling sticker details on a shirt, the ‘Oh look an ultrasound’ surprise approach, even a cake that said ‘We Found Out’ with baby décor. What a weirdo. But I know that I am not alone, we women want the ‘perfect’ proposal, the ‘perfect’ way to announce something. We women are constantly setting ourselves up for bitter disappointment and watch too many damn romantic comedies.
Have any perfectly planned FAILS that you want to share?
3. Christmas Morning
4. Kids hanging on the shopping cart….just kidding…but I will miss looking at faces in the cart like this….
5. Making cakes with the kids.
6. Finding things like this in the refrigerator…
7. Being pushed outside my comfort zone by being out in the cold and bruising my tailbone doing things like this….
8. Going to the Park
9. Thinking feet are cute.
10. Reading things like this…
February 5 is ‘World Nutella Day’ and my family will not be celebrating due to our complete abuse of the product. Also, PDA does not stand for Public Display of Affection. Some of you might be disappointed…but really shouldn’t be.
“Just a Folded Up Leaf….She’s Like the Wind”: Confessions of a Lyric Slaughterer
Written by: Andrea Angileri
We’ve all done it….taken a perfectly good song and completely screwed up the lyrics. When we were kids it was cute. We didn’t know better. As we got older some of us are old enough to remember the lyric insert inside the cassette tape or compact disc (young’uns that’s what ‘CD’ stands for). With the lyric insert we were invincible, correcting our friends as needed. These days we can Google search any song and find the correct lyrics. I don’t usually care too much about lyrics these days, except when the radio station bleeps out a bunch of words that I can figure out very quickly, realizing that I shouldn’t be hearing this in the van with the kids. Lil’ Wayne’s ‘I Ain’t Got No Worries’…we all know what you stuck in your face…and you have no worries about this…but now I do. In a different, somewhat more appropriate hip hop song my husband guessed a lyric as ‘There goes the business’, I thought it might be ‘There goes the beat drop’ and our preteen corrected us with ‘There goes the beast’. We are in our 30’s…we really shouldn’t think we know hip hop lyrics. We are much better quoting Rob Base’s ‘It Takes Two’.
The other day I was singing Train’s ‘Drive By’ in the car and found myself singing “Just a shy guy…lookin’ for a 2 ply” and then I stopped myself. ‘Lookin’ for a 2 ply? Really Andrea…he’s looking for a 2 ply?’ He’s a shy guy…looking for a 2 ply. A 2 ply of what? Toilet paper? I now envision the lead singer of Train sitting on the toilet waiting for somebody to pass him a square of toilet paper,….but he’s too shy to ask. ‘Seriously Andrea? You are wrong! You are screwing the song up!’ That’s how I talk to myself…I’m kind of a bully. He must be saying ‘Supply’ pronounced ‘Sue-ply’….. No, he’s not… he is really saying ‘2 ply’. This stupid Seinfeld conversation goes on way too long in my head, but it was a long highway drive which almost makes it seem… o.k. A later Google search will reveal that it says, ‘Just a shy guy looking for a 2 ply’ …then the next line ‘Hefty bag to hold my love’. Oh, it all makes much more sense now! It was never toilet paper…it was a garbage bag. I can now move on to the next insignificant drama.
Confession time: What lyrics will you admit to slaughtering?
“I Think You Like Cleaning the Bathroom” and Other Stupid Things Couples Say to Each Other
Written by: Andrea Angileri
It was one late afternoon in the ‘crap’ room that he said it. The ‘crap’ room is the extra room in our house that I am fumbling to make into an office/play area. It lacks what they call ‘a vision’ and what others might consider ‘adequate floor space’ (See ‘I’m a Tree Killer..and the Lorax is Pissed’ for more info). This room has paralyzed my husband for years. When we first got married it was a quaint little room for my Raggedy Ann doll collection. Later, it became Dom’s nursery. Eventually it would hold all three boys and their belongings until we refinished the basement. Then it would be an abandoned, cluttered play storage area, with a bed in case ‘Oscar the Grouch’ needed to get out of his garbage can to stretch his legs a bit. Side note: This sarcastic trash lover was my childhood favorite. Alas, the office/ play room hybrid.
“You have never been able to help me with this room”, I point out to my husband who is standing with his arms crossed and hovering around pointlessly.
“I don’t know where to start”, he replies. “I think you like cleaning the bathroom”.
“Step away slowly so I don’t divorce you”, I retort. “Why do you think I would actually enjoy cleaning the bathroom?”
“Because they are the smallest rooms in the house.”
Clearly, my husband doesn’t know me at all. When I clean the bathroom, I resemble a Crawford. Though I would love to say Cindy with her signature wavy hair, mole, red-lipstick, and super model appearance…it leans more towards a cold-creamed, white head band, infuriated Joan, or whimpering Christina spreading with a scrub brush a combination of Comet and tears. I hate cleaning the bathroom.
One of the reasons I dislike cleaning the bathroom, besides the fact that I’ve gone through 10 years of ‘badly aimed’ pee and toothpaste, is because they ARE the smallest rooms in the house. I literally am bumping into walls trying to clean this small poor excuse for a half bath crevice and the upstairs full is more like a 3/4. The vanities are small enough to hold nothing but lots of reoccurring germs. Just the thought almost grosses me out enough to make me log off and go clean them. Boy, am I funny. Another irk is that the moment I decide to clean the toilet, the whole families bowels twitch.
My husband then makes a jab about the kitchen. I admit, he’s really good at detailing the kitchen and also that he’s not entirely wrong when he says he thinks I don’t like cleaning that much either. Basically, the reason I don’t like cleaning the kitchen is because it never ends. There have been times when I have thought, “If I have to load this dishwasher up one more time today I am going to go ape sh#t!” “Oh….you loaded all the extra pots and pans in the oven?…Well guess what sucker? It’s already time for dinner and the kids want a pizza…so pull that crap back out and preheat!” And the floors? They are this torturous ‘off white’, everything shows up ceramic type. Mopping at anytime of the day besides the middle of the night is just encouraging multiple slips by each member of the family. I have a nice little mental picture that goes with that. Well, no joke…I really need to clean the kitchen before the hubby comes home with $300 worth of groceries with no counter space to put it. Much more time to talk about stupid things couples say next time.
Time to share: What is your LEAST favorite household to-do and why?