The Fabulousness of Forty-something

I just turned two score and six years a few weeks back and lemme tell you, I’m not as upset as most Hollywood-types would have had me believe. In fact, I’m not bothered by it at all. Maybe it’s because I was already braced for it, but I think that bein’ closer to the Big Five-Oh is actually pretty freeing. Maybe it’s because turning thirty was surprisingly satisfying and making it to forty was so fabulous, that any new decade is something to look forward to.

But since I am the protagonist of my own Romantic Comedy called Life, I mostly think it’s because of the wonderful “In Praise of the Older Woman” trend brought to the forefront by the dynamic duo of Ryan Murphy and Jessica Lange. What? You got that right. Ryan Murphy adores Jessica Lange as much as I do. I know, hard to believe. And, fortunately he’s in a prime position, as the current King of the Screen, to do something about it. And, Hollywood is taking notice. Women like Ms. Lange (67), Kathy Bates (68), Angela Bassett (58), and Susan Sarandon (70) — all of whom are being celebrated and showcased in all of their incredible acumen and beauty by Mr. Murphy (who’s on the cusp of 51) — have cured any doubts about becoming a woman … of a certain age. These women are beautiful, powerful, and full of fabulous!

Hollywood’s Most Glamorous Power Couple




Feud is due out in 2017

Further Reading on Feud



Mr. Murphy, Ms. Bates, and Ms. Bassett at Paleyfest 2013


Ms. Bates, Mr. Murphy, and Ms. Lange

Further Reading on AHS (may contain spoilers)

Whatever Happened to the Sweet & Happy Heroine?

I just spent the afternoon watching episodes of the 1970s television series Wonder Woman, starring the radiant Lynda Carter. What an adorable heroine she was. She was a sweet, but sober, visitor to America, whose naiveté made her all the more charming. I noticed that she smiled and laughed. A lot. She was cheerful and happy. It was a joy to watch.

There’s no doubt that 70s camp played its part in the filming of Wonder Woman, but the fact that the actresses didn’t take themselves too seriously made it magical. They were in on the joke. They were having fun, and it was fun to watch.


Cloris Leachman (Queen Hippolyta) and Fannie Flagg (Amazon Doctor)


Lyle Waggoner looking serious and rugged from a hospital bed.


“They steal money and I have to fill out forms? What a country this is!”


Where did she park her plane?

In today’s stories our female heroes are so much darker and more serious. They may be edgier, if not stronger, but certainly not more likable. Are they? I get the feeling that watching today’s crime fighters saps the watcher’s emotional energy more than it once did. And, no we haven’t come a long way, Baby. Our heroines are still practically naked. What’s up with that?

***Fierce Female Link: Fatness, Femininity and the Media We Deserve


“As I saw more beauty in others’ uniqueness, I began to appreciate my own.”

   ~Sarah Winifred Searle


I’m so pleased to have been recommended to this wonderful woman by my talented friend Kat. Check out Sarah Winifred Searle’s pithy comic titled Fatness, Femininity, and the Media We Deserve.



“It did weird things to my subconscious to grow up fat…”




Autumn is Coming

Yay! It’s the Oneth of September and I’m happier than the average bear. September is the month that brings us the beautiful Autumnal Equinox which falls officially on September 22nd, my birthday.  Is it any wonder that I love Autumn? I was born for it.


Autumn signifies order and routine as the kidlens head off to school. Autumn leaves blow in the cool breeze, bringing sighs of relief from the summer’s icky heat. Rain tap-tap-tapping on the window panes always encourages me to slow down and take the time to cuddle up with a favorite book. Autumn brings thunderstorms that wash away the Old. And best of all, Halloween is almost here.

What are your favorite things about Autumn?


Today kicks off the Taboo Word Challenge created by Eric, author of the All In A Dad’s Work blog. Click the link for details and to participate!

taboo challenge

Don’t Breathe Will Leave You Gasping for Air



Took two of my teens to see the new thriller Don’t Breathe today and lemme just tell y’all, it was not what I expected. Even though I tried to go into the movie with zero expectations (all I knew was what I’d seen in the original trailer; I read no reviews and none of my immediate circle had seen it yet), I knew that Sam Raimi was a producer and I didn’t expect him to sign off on a piece of crap. So, while I knew the initial premise — three young adults decide to rob a blind guy in his own home — I went in expecting an average suspense. And then, I got the wind knocked outta me.

from gamesradar

Close quarters make for some very powerful dread.

Formula First

Roughly five minutes of set-up was all it took to make Rocky (very deftly portrayed by the cherub-faced girl-next-door, Jane Levy) the criminal you’re rootin’ for, due to the stock set-up. We’re not lookin’ at deep character development here, Friends, but that’s okay because Levy was aptly supported by her co-star Dylan Minnette who played her platonic, moon-eyed friend Alex. Daniel Zovatto, who played Money, gave us enough spot-on machismo to quickly decipher the fact that “ah, here’s the asshole boyfriend everyone wants to see get it.”


Minnette and Levy give their most thrilling performances when they don’t have to rely on dialogue.

Going in, I couldn’t quite imagine a hunk like Stephen Lang being too thoroughly icky as The Blind Man. Menacing? Yes. Scary as hell? Yes. But gross? I was surprised what blinding Lang’s baby blues and slathering him with grime and sweat, and costuming him in a blood-stained wife-beater could do. In such close quarters, the viewers could almost smell his grime and rage. Nods to the costuming and lighting departments for the former, but all of the menace and rage should be squarely placed on the shoulders of Lang’s years of theater performances.


It gets truly intense when Lang’s Blind Man levels the playing field.

Brace Yourself

After 10 Cloverfield Lane, I was a bit skeptical that writer/director Fede Alvarez was going to be able to keep us glued to our seats, but he did it. This gripping twist on the current Home Invasion trend delivers all the nerve-wracking anxiety, claustrophobia, and suspense a thrill seeker could hope for.

As I said, this isn’t a deep character study. This is an action-packed thriller with lots of long silent (and terrifying) silences. The momentum depends almost exclusively on the character’s action — or inaction, if you will. With so few principle characters and the limited space of a single family dwelling, it’s easy to wonder how the action and angst can be sustained. Don’t worry. This home-owner may be blind, but he knows his own home like the back of his hand. It’s believable when he appears everywhere and nowhere at any given moment. And, when he cuts the lights, those poor kids don’t stand a chance. There’s nothin’ as gratifying as a fair fight. Is there?

Before the crew of hopeful home invaders decide to execute their plan, Alex wonders whether or not robbing a blind man might be a skeevy move. Well, in hindsight I would advise, “Hey, you prolly shouldn’t disturb this guy. He’s disturbed enough.”


Lunchtime Olympics

Ever been whacked upside your head with a metal lunchbox? Are you old enough to remember when things used to be made out of metal? Well, back in my day, manufacturers really enjoyed making everything for kidlens outta metal. We started out with metal highchairs and metal toys, eventually graduating to metal playground equipment and, the best of all, metal lunch boxes. If you’ve never slid down a metal slide in the height of summer heat in Texas, you don’t know what you’re missing. Actually, if you did have the opportunity to, you were missing about three layers of skin. Good times! But, back to the boxes…

Metal lunchboxes came in a wonderful variety of differing themes, which also served as handy indicators of their owner’s ranking in the general student population. The fashionable kids had boxes adorned with Star Wars, Evel Knievel, Charlie’s Angels, or “The Fonz.” You could also be cool with one of the bionic boxes, like Steve Austin’s Six Million Dollar Man or Jaimie Sommer’s Bionic Woman. You may not be ostracized with an Adam-12 box, but you were definitely in the lower echelon of influence. But Heaven help you if you were seen with a Curious George or Holly Hobby box. That was just social suicide.


Oh yeah, I was one of the cool kids.


What’s better than gettin’ a few hundred kids together, all hyped up on sugar  with a ratio of about 30 rambunctious kids to 1 beleaguered teacher, and sticking ’em all in a hot, sticky, stinky lunchroom? Then arming them with awesome metal lunch boxes. Oh, and metal utensils and sometimes even metal lunch trays, too.

At one of the elementary schools I attended, “Box Bashing” was a regular sport. Usually the boys started the game, but right around the time the Equal Rights Amendment was gaining traction, girls decided it would be a good idea to get in on the action, too. The only problem with the game was that you never knew you were a participant until you were slammed by someone’s decorated hardware. Of course, if you had a whelp with the outline of one of Charlie’s Angels on the side of your face, it meant you’d at least garnered the attention of one of the popular kids. So, there was that consolation.

Let the games begin!


Violence in Living Color

I’m not ashamed to admit that I love a good horror show, but only the ones that take place on the Silver Screen. Y’know, the kind that involves actors and Hollywood-types getting paid a lot of money to be drenched in heavy FX. The kind that goes well with popcorn and peanut M&Ms. The kind that you can fast-forward, turn off, or walk out of if it gets too intense. The horror show that is far removed from daily life.

Every day we are waking up to new violence and bloodshed in the news, both at home and abroad. When has fighting fire with fire ever worked outside the cinema? Violent retaliation does not open the doors to civil dialogue and positive change; instead, violence and murder only alienate those who are sympathetic to your cause and force them to recoil in horror. Please, stop the violence.


When the Spooky Isn’t

Eric’s post about paranormal encounters over’t MakeItUltra™ has inspired me to share my own thoughts about “strange happenings.” When I was very young I would sometimes see and hear things that the grown-ups around me didn’t seem to catch, and when I questioned them, I was routinely patted on the head and told that I had an [overly] active imagination.  Those dismissive attitudes encouraged me to seek answers on my own. Thus began my interest in the paranormal and the strange and inexplicable in general.

I was taught by sincere Pentecostal types that anything “otherworldly” was to absolutely be feared and avoided as being “of the Devil” but was confused when my own experiences didn’t fit that bill. What about the times when something inexplicable showed up that didn’t make my skin crawl at all? When “a presence” was comforting or empowering?

In the fourth grade I finally, sheepishly admitted to a beloved teacher that I’d seen “a white spirit” when I was alone at home. The look of horror on her face and her stern warning to ignore it and let it pass (make it go away, I think were her exact words) convinced me that even trusted adults thought me a liar … or worse yet, crazy.

In college, I stumbled across a book by Billy Graham entitled Angels: God’s Secret Agents and it opened a whole new world of wonderful, biblical, possible explanations for the experiences I’d had. Surely good God-fearin’ folk wouldn’t argue with Billy Graham! I knew and trusted that I had at least one guardian in the cosmos.

When my spice and I began our conversion to the Catholic Church, I began studying her take on the angels and saints, and more importantly to me, their intercession and guidance in our daily lives … and my mind was blown.

Angel of the Waters (Bethesda Fountain) in Central Park by Israel Guevara C.

Angel of the Waters in Central Park by Israel Guevara C.


 Have you had strange encounters? Please share iffin’ you’re of a mind to.

Light a Light

My intended blog for today is now on the back burner, in light of the events of what happened overnight in our neighboring town of Dallas. Still too numb to know what to say, I’m sharing my sweetest Kat’s post here in this week’s ***Fierce Female Reblog***


I sat down to write this morning, and like I do I decided to check social media first. (Because nothing says “getting into the right frame of mind for making up stories” like “fiddling around on Facebook for half an hour.”) And my body grew numb with horror and sorrow, and my tea got cold at my elbow, and when I closed my browser I stared at the document open on my laptop and thought, What even is the point?

Check the news, a friend messaged me, and try not to cry.

I didn’t try. I read about police officers being shot in Dallas, about a man being killed in St Paul, another in Baton Rouge, and I wept. These are human beings, each unique and valuable and beloved, and they are dead. Who would not weep, at the shattering of these worlds?

And what good does it do…

View original post 175 more words