Viewing Notes: The Bachelorette (Clare) – Ep. 2

Pack a snack and then pack another one because we’re venturing back into the wardrobe for episode two of: The Chronicles of The Bachelorette: The Clare, the Dale, and the Massive Waste of Time. Now available on VHS!

~ The guys all congregate under one roof at the resort. It’s like they’re at summer camp and each cabin has a different activity.

~ I hope we see them in the dining hall. Who will need to be encouraged to eat “just three more bites” before they can go on a date? Find out…TONIGHT. Maybe.

~ Chris Harrison enters with his sleeves rolled up and says, “Fellas”. Ah, some things never change.

GROUP DATE (Riley, Jordan, Yosef, Ivan, Ben, Bennett, Zac C., Zach J., and Dale)

~ The guys form a singe-file line and follow hearts on the ground to get to their date destination.

~ Clare tells us that she specifically picked Dale to be on this date.

~ Camp Director Chris is also on the date, to walk them through the different love languages.

~ Clare will be positioned in the window of a castle (?) as the men speak words of affirmation to her.

~ One guy should just be like, “Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair” but I doubt they even know who Rapunzel is.

~ They all say their piece, but she seems most impressed by Dale, even though his speech wasn’t that different from the others.

~ The guys not on the date are having a belly flop competition…because it’s camp, when all of a sudden the guys on the date come running by and into their respective houses cabins.

~ Dale splits his pants and Bennett looks like Stu from Mrs. Doubtfire.

~ The second part of the love language date is: gifts. Ah, so that’s what the guys went to get from their luggage.

~ Ivan gives Clare a chess piece (Queen), in hopes that he’ll be her King one day.

~ The next guy gives her a baseball from the last game he ever played in 2012. He wrote on it, “Don’t complain, just figure it out.”

~ I hope he gets the ball back.

~ Next guy gives her his favourite t-shirt. I don’t care if he gets it back.

~ Dale gives her perfume for her dogs. Do they smell? What’s he implying?

~ The next love language they’ll be exploring is: physical touch.

~ They will be hugging each other, while blindfolded.

~ Zach J. says he has tried to smell good ever since he was 12-years-old because his step-mom told him boys should smell good.

~ The guys are uncomfortable watching Clare with Dale. This is going to be a theme.

~ Day has turned to night and it is time for them to spend some quality time with Clare because quantity time is impossible on this show.

~ They are all sitting together and Clare is waiting for someone to steal her away for a chat, but no one is! This is a first for this show.

~ Finally, Bennett pulls her away. She asks him to tell her about himself.

~ “New York, Harvard guy.” – Bennett, thinking she asked for his social media bio

~ Somewhere, a money bag just got its wings.

~ Clare can’t stop thinking about what just happened with the guys, probably because Bennett hasn’t given her anything new to think about.

~ Oh, here we go.

~ She leaves their chat to go back to the guys and tell them how embarrassed she was that no one took the initiative to talk to her.

~ Yosef says he’ll speak for the group, but Clare says, “You can speak for yourself!”

~ What is happening??

~ Now all the guys are standing up, trying to make amends.

~ I feel like this was all a misunderstanding because the guys are new to the show and don’t know when they’re allowed to pull her away from the group. The producers have them stand/sit in certain spots all the time, perhaps they didn’t know they had the freedom to go elsewhere?

~ Yosef wanted to say they’re all here for her, but Riley says he doesn’t want anyone speaking for him.

~ “There is no me and you.” – Riley, directed at Yosef

~ Clare has disappeared with Dale. Bennett is still waiting, alone in the room Clare left him in. We may never see him again.

~ We are half an hour in and I’m ready to declare this a disaster. Ten points to whoever finds the pun in that sentence.

~ Clare to Dale: “Thanks for pulling me away, it makes me feel like you care.”

~ Dale scares her because of how she already feels about him.

~ Back at Camp Bro, Jason finds out he’s getting a one-on-one date.

~ Meanwhile, Clare is enjoying a chat with Zac C.

~ Alert the production truck, Clare likes someone other than Dale. The season is saved! For now.

~ Riley is slow dancing with Clare to bring back memories of high school prom. Ugh why?

~ My high school prom was on the night of the NHL Draft and that was the first time I ever sent a text message.

~ Riley gets the group date rose. Bennett has re-joined the group. And Yosef tells us that he thought the response from Clare tonight was hotheaded and immature.

~ We are way too early in the season for this much animosity.

ONE-ON-ONE DATE (Jason)

~ Before the date, she wants Jason to write a letter to his younger self. This is like if a professor assigned a reading before Syllabus Day.

~ This date is taking place by a campfire because the producers knew I would turn this episode into a giant camp analogy.

~ Clare says they’re going to practice letting go. Are they going to tie their letters to a helium balloon and release them?

~ Nope. They’re screaming as loud as they can. Oh. Well, that also works.

~ Now they’re writing down things they’ve been told about themselves that hurt them.

~ At least we’re getting some real, emotional, meaningful chats out of this. In previous seasons, they’d be on a boat in the middle of nowhere by now, getting a sunburn.

~ They are now throwing their clipboard (?) against the rocks to shatter their past.

FOOD (Yes, this heading is necessary)

~ They both read their letters, and right before we go to commercial, the camera zooms in on a spread of food that neither of them have touched!

~ I spy green grapes, prosciutto, and…is that bread? The sandwiches that never were. Sad.

~ This show needs an “In Memoriam” for all the food that went uneaten on dates.

~ Jason gets a rose. Okay, now eat the food.

~ Wait, Clare just pulled out the dress she wore at the finale of Juan Pablo’s season.

~ She’s throwing the dress in the fire!

~ I feel like she’s one ritual away from fully defeating Voldemort, or something.

~ Eat a grape! Voldemort hates fruit!

GROUP DATE (Eazy, Kenny, Garin, Joe, Blake Moynes, Brandon, Jay, Brendan, Chasen, and Jason)

~ They are playing dodgeball! The camp activities continue!

~ The guys are so relieved they get to play sports.

~ Camp Director Chris stops the game with a whistle! He divides them into two teams; the winning team spends the evening with Clare.

~ Oh, Clare wants them to play strip dodgeball.

~ This is going to be uncomfortable.

~ The blue team lost, as Clare consoles their naked (and afraid) bodies with hugs.

~ I was right. That was uncomfortable.

~ The blue team walks home in their underwear. What a team bonding moment…?

~ They walk in the house and sit on the couch with the guys who weren’t on the date.

~ That couch will be burned in the morning, if someone doesn’t toss it in the pool in the middle of the night.

~ Back on the date, Eazy pulls Clare away and gives her a foot massage…while her shoe is still on.

~ Clare is with Chasen now, and reveals she never went to prom because she was “invisible in high school”.

~ Blake Moynes, from Canada, has put on some clothes and is headed back to the date. He’s breaking the rules!

~ He immediately steals Clare away from Jay, who is wondering why no one is stepping in to say he can’t do that.

~ “Didn’t you lose?” – Jay

~ Haha oh Jay, ya silly moose. It’s The Bachelorette. There are no rules.

~ All five guys – sans burgers and fries – are now going to confront Blake. They call him a sore loser.

They are so mad that their reward for winning strip dodgeball on a dating show, is being compromised.

~ Clare sends Blake away, as to not disrespect the guys who won.

~ She’s now sitting down with Brandon, who looks like Carey Price.

~ Brandon says he saw that she was the bachelorette and knew he wanted to sign up, however, he knows nothing about her.

~ This irks her because he can’t say why he wanted to come on the show, other than that she’s beautiful.

~ She’s really bothered that he didn’t Google her before coming on the show.

~ Alright, Clare. This is unfair. Maybe he didn’t want to have a preconceived notion of who you were before he met you?

~ Maybe he would rather hear you tell him about yourself, instead of reading it on the internet??

Maybe he wanted you both to get to know each other at the same pace?

~ Maybe he saw you and had the same reaction you had when Dale got out of the limo?

~ Hey, there was a time when the “contestants” didn’t know who the bachelor/bachelorette was until they rolled up in the limo. Give this guy a break.

~ Brandon is sitting there sweating, feeling terrible, and she’s ending things right here and now with him. This is unfair.

~ Clare says she’s having conversations with the other guys about things they appreciate about her, but Brandon can’t tell her one thing he likes about her.

~ BECAUSE HE DOESN’T KNOW YOU YET. THAT’S THE POINT OF THIS DATE.

~ I’m perplexed.

~ Brandon just got hit by a bus and he didn’t even know he was outside.

~ The group date rose goes to Chasen.

BACK AT THE HOUSE

~ Yosef felt humiliated on his group date, and hearing about how Clare made guys strip while playing dodgeball, isn’t sitting well with him.

~ Yosef will confront Clare later. Spoiler: It will not go well.

COCKTAIL PARTY

~ Clare steals Blake Moynes away first.

~ The guys stand around very awkwardly when Clare is around. It’s like they don’t know how to act on this show.

~ Clare tells Blake she thought it was amazing that he came back to the date, even though his team lost the dodgeball game.

~ She gives him a rose, so he doesn’t have to worry.

~ And the second he walks back in that house, he will be Public Enemy #1. Did the producers put her up to this?

~ In the house he goes and they all stare daggers right through his Canadian heart.

~ Eazy declares, going forward, there will be no rules of engagement. Finally, someone gets it.

~ Meanwhile, Dale has snuck off with Clare. She puts the blindfold from their date back on him and they kiss.

~ Yeah, the rest of the guys are just wasting their time now.

The episode ends there, as we’ll have to wait until next week to find out who will be sent home, and who will be forced to stick around and watch Dale get all the attention.

What did you think of this episode? What do you think happens to the uneaten food on dates?

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Jumbo Joe in Toronto

I remember when the Toronto Maple Leafs acquired Owen Nolan from the San Jose Sharks at the trade deadline in 2003. Man, I was so excited. The next day at school, I went right to my best friend, Chris, and we were both like, “Oh my God, we got Owen Nolan!”

Those were the days.

At that age (11), I wasn’t looking at stats, or trying to figure out where a player fit into the lineup. You don’t realize it at the time, but childhood innocence is the best thing a sports fan can have. It’s a shame we outgrow it.

The early 2000s are my favourite era of Maple Leafs Hockey. It felt like the team could sign anyone they wanted. It felt like they could trade for anyone, too, all they had to do was give up draft picks.

Fine, do it! Draft shmaft, right?

It was like a video game. Any trade and/or signing was possible.

Curtis Joseph. Alexander Mogilny. Gary Roberts. Joe Nieuwendyk. Owen Nolan. Brian Leetch. Ron Francis. Phil Housley.

If they were a future Hall of Famer, the Leafs were interested. And they could do it because they had the money. There was no salary cap. Throw the money bags at them.

It was so much fun. Sure, they never won the Stanley Cup, but I promise you, that never mitigated my excitement.

Again, the bliss of childhood innocence.

I think the mindset of, “We can get anyone. We’re Toronto. Who wouldn’t want to play here?” is, for better or for worse, built into the fabric of most Leaf fans. I don’t even think we notice it, at this point.

We are the Dallas Cowboys. We are the New York Yankees. 

In the world of professional wrestling, we would be a heel. The kind of heel that cannot fathom why their actions are not accepted by the fans. Don’t you love me? Eventually, we’d cut an, “All you people made me this way” promo on the audience and embrace our inner bully.

After the NHL implemented a salary cap in 2006, the Leafs couldn’t bring in everyone anymore. It took them a while to realize that. It took them a while to figure out that mortgaging the future, just to finish 9th, wasn’t going to work.

Fast-forward a bunch of painful years and we finally have young, talented players to call our own. Literally, we called them out of the stands at the Draft, gave them a jersey, and claimed them as ours.

Auston Matthews. Mitch Marner. William Nylander.

But we’re Toronto. The good feelings could never last. No one hates us more than we can hate us.

It’s the old Kate Bush lyric…”so much hate for the ones we love.”

These three players aren’t even 25-years-old. They’re too young to have a quarter-life crisis, yet here we are – the fanbase – criticizing them for being unable to win a playoff series. For taking too much money. For being too small. For not being physical enough. Anything and everything.

What a terrible, toxic environment we create. Imagine being 22-years-old, doing the thing you love, and having thousands of people criticize you for not being who they want you to be.

As a fanbase, we don’t know what it’s like to win a playoff series in the salary cap era. We last won a playoff series 16 years ago.

Those teams were big. They were tough. They had grit. Tie Domi fought a fan in the penalty box in Philadelphia. Darcy Tucker charged the Ottawa Senators’ bench and started fighting. Curtis Joseph tackled a referee…okay, it was an accident, but I’m trying to make a point here.

Those are the Leaf teams a lot of (modern) fans correlate with playoff success. We don’t know any other blueprint. They haven’t worked.

Last season, the team was built around the idea of puck possession and skill. It became obvious that that wasn’t going to be enough. They needed to acquire players who could provide toughness.

So, here we are. The NHL off-season, smack dab in the middle of October. What a world.

Wayne Simmonds, come on down.

T.J. Brodie, come on down.

Zach Bogosian, come on down.

Jimmy Vesey, come on down.

You are the first four contestants on, The Leafs get Tougher.

And then there was a bit of a lull because the team is over the salary cap, with a couple of restricted free agents still to sign.

Alright, we’re going to have to move someone out. We need to free up cap space.

NOPE.

Let’s go get future Hall of Famer, Joe Thornton, because we are the Toronto Maple Leafs.

I love it. I love it. I love it. I love it.

And when that news came out just before 5PM, Friday night, I was transported back to the early 2000s and my childhood innocence kicked in.

I do not care how old he is. I do not care that his best years are behind him. I do not care if we’re even more over the cap than yesterday. I do not care if we have too many forwards. I do not care if he’s taking someone’s spot. I do not care if he’s not what we needed. I do not care that we already had veterans in the room.

Read my lips, via these four words and ten letters:

I DO NOT CARE.

Joe Thornton is a Toronto Maple Leaf.

This is glorious. If you can’t enjoy this moment…if you can’t put a smile on your face and have fun with this, then someone needs to get a fishing rod and pull you back in by the nostril because you are too far gone as a fan.

It is not my job to figure out how the Leafs can make this work. It is not my job to come up with line combinations. It is not my job to think of trade scenarios.

Will I still do all of those things? Yeah, probably. But I don’t have to go to bed every night with the pressure of actually coming to a resolution.

It is not my job. If they want to make it my job, I will gladly accept, but I think they’re fine without me.

*whispers* call me.

In this moment, I am merely a fan, who is beyond thrilled by this acquisition.

What does Joe Thornton bring to the team? Everything. Final answer.

People will say, “We already had veteran leadership on the team.” Okay, but if the question is, “Do you want Joe Thornton on your team?” You say yes, every day of the week and twice on Fridays.

Thornton’s addition to this team is akin to when you’d play soccer at recess and three minutes in, your friend comes running outside (they were held up; homework problems) and before they even get to the field, you’re already screaming, “He’s on our team!!”

And then all the players on your team are like, “Yeah! We got ___!” And you immediately say to each other, “Go up, I’ll get it to you.”

It’s just a big boost to everyone.

That is the human element of sport we don’t talk about enough. It isn’t all about goals or assists, it’s about confidence and how you feel when surrounded by certain people.

Joe Thornton is a legend in this game, and there are a lot of young players on this team who have had to carry the hopes and dreams of every fan on their shoulders, probably before they were mature enough to do so.

Perhaps Thornton’s presence will allow some players to stand up a little taller, and grow into who they were always meant to be.

So, if some fans want to give up on certain players because their production doesn’t match their salary, they can have that opinion.

At the same time, I don’t know how wise it would be to ship out a core player, right before you actually make a push as a franchise. Not a “we’re just happy to be here” push. A real push.

It feels like this off-season is the impetus of that real push. You always want to see a team build from within, and then bring in outside pieces to supplement the talent you’ve developed.

Through all the pain of the early playoff exits, that is what the Leafs have done. That is what the Leafs are doing.

And, now, Jumbo Joe is a part of it.

No need to overthink it, just let your blue heart show.

Go Leafs Go.

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Viewing Notes: The Bachelorette (Clare) – Ep. 1

In a year where we’ve all been encouraged to keep our distance from other human beings, it feels a bit weird to be watching a new season of The Bachelorette. And yet here I sit, as they prepare to swap sp…nope, not going to say it.

This season was filmed in a bubble. Everyone was quarantined, tested, and cleared to participate. So, good for them for finding a safe way to do this and for giving us something to watch.

The bachelorette this season is Clare Crawley from Sacramento, California. She first appeared on Juan Pablo’s season in 2014. She also appeared on two seasons of Bachelor in Paradise, and one season of Bachelor Winter Games.

Personally, I’m excited it’s her. She’s always been one of the most confident, honest, and straightforward people to be associated with this franchise, so I’m glad she’s finally in charge of handing out the roses.

Best of luck to Clare.

THE BEGINNING

~ Chris Harrison and his bevy of hand gestures welcome us to a new season of The Bachelorette.

~ He said, “during times like these” and “these most troubling times” in his monologue, which means I must start a “These Times” Counter.

~ “These Times” Counter: 2

~ We go back to the Before Times and see Chris telling Clare that she is the next Bachelorette.

~ Now we get the obligatory Clare/Juan Pablo breakup footage from 2014, followed by a montage of her appearances on Bachelor in Paradise.

~ Clare is looking out her window as if someone just dropped a pizza in a puddle, while they tell the story of the pandemic altering their filming schedule.

~ The show will be filmed in a Bachelorette Bubble in La Quinta, California at La Quinta Resort & Club. Book your stay today…or in 2025.

~ Oh nice, a time lapse of Clare quarantining in her room. This feels like an episode of Big Comfy Couch.

~ Dr. Chris Harrison knocks on her door and informs her she has tested negative for COVID-19. I feel like this is a HIPAA violation.

~ I want to know who knocked on Chris’ door to tell him he had tested negative.

The men are moving into the resort – it looks like they each have their own house – and film their reactions to getting swabbed up the nose.

~ I feel like we could’ve skipped the whole, “these are the mundane things we did while in quarantine” video package. WE KNOW. WE LIVED IT.

~ Clare pulls up to the makeshift mansion to have a chat with Chris Harrison.

~ Chris talks about how no one else in the world can find love the way Clare will be doing so here. And how is that different from any other season, Christopher?

~ We can’t all just walk into a room where we’re the only option for 30 potential spouses.

~ It’s just about time to get this show on the road television. So far, Clare has been giving off confident, decisive, Trista-from-Season-1, vibes.

~ These men better not be stupid. This is Clare Crawley. Don’t mess this up.

LIMO ENTRANCES

~ Out of the limo first is Ben, who is an Army Ranger Veteran. He looks like Dan Gheesling from Big Brother. They hug for 2.05 seconds. Yes, I have a stopwatch.

~ Next up is Riley. He is an attorney. He says Clare is guilty, as charged, for looking beautiful in her dress. He practiced that line for 14 days, I guarantee it.

~ Zac C. is up next, which means we must have another Zac on the way? He believes everything happens for a reason.

~ Here comes Jordan M., who seems to be expecting a flood. He left his socks at home and his pants end before his ankles. Either this is an 8D chess move, or he had a laundry mishap.

~ The next guy out is Jason, who also isn’t wearing socks! His pants also end above his ankles! What is happening inside Limo #1? I haven’t even mentioned that he showed up “pregnant”.

~ Clare exited the limo on her season with a “baby bump”, so Jason thought it was a great idea to do the same…and have her remember the time she met Juan Pablo??

~ YOU HAD 14 DAYS WITH NOTHING BUT YOUR OWN THOUGHTS AND THIS IS WHAT YOU CAME UP WITH? GET BACK IN THE LIMO. GO. SKEDADDLE.

~ Ivan is an Aeronautical Engineer. So, rocket scientist? He speaks a bit of Tagalog to tell Clare she’s very beautiful. They held a hug for 1.58 seconds.

~ Here comes Kenny, who is a Boy Band Manager. He’s wearing a t-shirt – with Clare’s dogs printed on it – and a sports jacket. I don’t know how Boy Band Managers are supposed to dress, but this feels spot on.

~ Brendan, with a bow tie, is up next. Clare wiggles his bowtie like he’s a 4-year-old at a wedding. This sparked my first genuine laugh of the night.

~ Mike, from Calgary, brought Clare a pair of sandals so she’ll be more comfortable. What a Canadian.

I’d love to hear the backstory. Was he sending photos of sandals to his mom or sister (if he has one), asking what looks nice? Or did he just pick up the ones that sparkled? How many photos of women’s sandals are on this man’s phone?

~ Let me host a show called, Inside The Rose, and we’ll get to the bottom of this.

~ Jeremy promises to make Clare laugh as much as possible. They hug for 1.41 seconds.

~ Blake Monar is a Male Grooming Specialist and only buttoned up 60% of his shirt.

~ Tyler C. pulls up in a station wagon and says he packed up his entire life to be here. He wants kids and dogs.

~ Tyler C. looks like someone, but I can’t put my finger on it.

~ A Rolls Royce rolls up and out comes Bennett, a Wealth Management Consultant. He is wearing a bow tie and a white scarf. His persona is a cross between JBL and MJF. That was a spot-on wrestling reference if there ever was one.

~ Blake Moynes also left his socks at home. They hug for a whopping 5.62 seconds, which might be a new show record!

~ Next out of the limo is Chris, who is as nervous as a popcorn kernel, which means he’s there for the right reasons.

~ AJ also forgot to finish doing up the buttons on his shirt. All his friends tell him he gives terrible first impressions. As he’s holding Clare’s hands, he squeezes too hard and she’s in pain.

~ OFF WITH YOU. BACK TO THE LIMO YOU GO. THOU SHALT NOT HURT CLARE.

~ Joe shows up and says he’s here to save her love life. He has a stethoscope.

~ A few years ago, we had Joey Grocery. Does this guy want to be Joey Stethoscopey?

~ Garin says he’s “kiiiinda fun”. He says it twice. Oh no.

~ Robby says he is super excited to meet her.

~ Eazy busts through a sign that says, “Your Future Husband”. I’m assuming he got the idea because he’s a Sports Marketing Agent. He calls her his first round draft pick.

~ Something tells me this guy has a full playbook of sports analogies.

~ Jay comes out in a straitjacket because it’s been 128 days since he was supposed to meet her and he’s gone a bit crazy since then. His words, not mine. They don’t hug BECAUSE HE’S IN A STRAITJACKET.

~ Jay, this is not a winning formula. Who put you up to this?

~ How many men have ever met their future wife, while wearing a straitjacket? It has to be less than zero, right? This is not the way.

~ Here comes a knight in shining armour. His name is Chasen. He leaves all the armour on the driveway and walks away. Yes, women love men who leave a mess everywhere they go. It’s called the Pigpen Effect.

~ Demar shows up attached to a parachute and says he’s fallen for her already.

~ Here comes Ed, who is in a bubble. No socks on Ed, either.

~ Call me old-fashioned, but I couldn’t fathom wearing dress shoes without socks.

~ Yosef has brought her MoonPies. I looked it up, there is no space between Moon and Pie.

~ “Who brought the cookies?” “They’re MoonPies.”

~ From what I can tell, the Canadian equivalent to MoonPies is, Jos Louis. The half-moon Jos Louis were my favourite because the straight edge would have a thicker layer of chocolate, than if you had a full-moon Jos Louis.

Thank you for coming to my Fed Talk.

~ Jordan C. brings her some popcorn.

~ This is turning into a potluck. I swear, if I see a veggie platter, I’m going to type aggressively in all caps.

~ Zach J. gets on one knee and opens a ring box that makes a farting noise.

~ BACK IN THE LIMO FOR YOU.

~ Brandon meets Clare without any hokey gimmick and kisses her on the cheek – the only one to do so. He’s there for the right reasons.

~ Out comes Dale, who is a self-proclaimed hugger. It was a pick-up hug and lasted for 3.15 seconds. Blake Moynes’ hug was longer and he wasn’t even wearing socks.

~ Clare is smiling more than she’s ever smiled in her life.

~ Dale goes inside and Clare is left breathless. Someone should call Joe back out to save her. He has a stethoscope!

She says, “it feels like I just met my husband.”

~ Alright, everyone else can form an orderly line out front. Your limos will be back to pick you up, shortly. Please split the last of the cookies, as you wait.

~ “THEY’RE MOONPIES.”

~ Chris checks in to make sure Clare knows what she just said because, you know, more guys are coming and they need to make enough episodes to fill the next three months.

~ Here comes Page. No socks.

~ IT’S AN EPIDEMIC WRAPPED IN A PANDEMIC.

~ Tyler S. is a Music Manager. His best friend in the house will be the Boy Band Manager. I have made this decision for them.

~ That’s all of ’em. Let the games begin.

CLARE ENTERS THE HOUSE

~ Clare gives a great, genuine speech and then is immediately stolen away by someone. I don’t know their name.

~ Eazy and Clare bond over the fact that their mothers always ask them if they’ve met someone yet. Ah, nothing like a little familial pressure to bring two people together.

~ Clare sits down with Dale – the guy who she thinks could be her future husband.

~ “During this time…”

~ “These Times” Counter: 3

~ Their interaction is very natural and he didn’t even have to show up with any props!

~ Clare’s dogs have joined the cocktail party. They will sniff out the guys who are only there for Instagram followers and cross-reference that list with the guys who aren’t wearing any socks.

~ One guy presents Clare with a picture that his niece drew of her.

Joe has some kind of origami display, where each piece is a member of the show. It’s fun. He makes her laugh. Joe is a good guy.

~ A guy asks Clare if she’s seen the movie, My Cousin Vinnie. She hasn’t because she likes to be outdoors. He says he also likes to be outdoors.

“Don’t even put me indoors at all…I want a cabin in the woods.” – Guy, whose name I don’t know right now (Edit: It’s Jason)

~ Clare asks if he’ll be murdering people out there. That is a fantastic follow-up question.

~ Ah, his name is Jason. He’s the one that showed up “pregnant”. I think I told him to get back in the limo. Clare seems to like him. I’ll let him stay.

~ Into the living room walks Christopher B. Harrison, to drop off the First Impression Rose. He says, “fellas”, as always.

~ Tyler C. has some dirt on Yosef. Something about being reckless on Instagram. This will blow up soon.

~ Soon seems to be right now. Tyler calls Yosef over to talk about what he knows about him talking to girls on Instagram.

~ Yosef brushes the whole thing off and goes straight to Clare to say that Tyler is dragging his name through the mud.

~ Clare gets both of them together and will interrogate them like a mature adult.

~ Clare asks Yosef if he has a girl friend who thinks she’s his girlfriend. Solid question. This show loves that exact storyline.

~ That whole spat is over with, for now.

~ Clare sits down with Blake Moynes and tells him she’s glad he reached out to her during quarantine, even though it’s against the rules of the show to do that. She really appreciated him checking on her.

~ I missed it before, but Blake is from Hamilton, Ontario. No wonder he had the longest hug of the night.

~ Clare pulls Dale aside and presents him with the First Impression Rose.

THE ROSE CEREMONY

~ Not to be confused with, The Rosée Ceremony.

~ Night has turned to Morning, which means everyone is exhausted. One guy appears to have pink eye. I wonder if he knows.

~ Blake Moynes, from Canada, gets the first rose.

~ Eazy, Ben, Riley, Zach J., Tyler S., Joe, Jason, Demar, Chasen, and Jordan C. get roses 2-11.

~ Blake Monar, not from Canada, gets the 12th rose.

~ Kenny, Brendon, Garin, Ed, Bennett – who is STILL wearing his scarf -, Zac C., Jay – who is STILL in his straitjacket, and Brandon receive roses 13-20.

~ As long as Brendon and Brandon are both on the show, I’m going to need everyone else to really enunciate.

~ Ivan gets the penultimate rose.

~ The final rose is going to Yosef or Tyler C., isn’t it?

~ Yosef gets the final rose, which means the drama surrounding him will probably continue.

~ It took me the whole episode, but I finally figured it out. Tyler C. looks like LA Rams Head Coach, Sean McVay. For a while, I was going to say Ryan Atwood, but the hair wasn’t lining up.

Well, that’s it. We’ve reached the end of the first episode.

If you made it this far, you are a superstar. Thank you! I really appreciate it.

See you next Wednesday!

What did you think of the first episode? Do you have any favourites? Why did so many guys show up without socks?

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First Time Watching: The Goonies

I watched The Goonies at the end of August and it has taken me this long to muster up the motivation to write about it. Needless to say, I will be leaning on Wikipedia to fill in the gaps in my memory.

Let’s get this out of the way early: I did not like the movie. I found it boring and had a hard time getting into the characters and plot.

The movie begins with a man breaking out of jail and hopping in a getaway car – commissioned by his brother and mother – at the designated rendezvous, directly outside the police station.

Meet the Fratelli family! I say that as if they are contestants on Family Feud, but no. They are a crime family.

Mama Fratelli reminded me of the bird lady from Home Alone 2. One of her sons looks like he was born to be a movie villain. Can’t quite put my finger on why I came to that conclusion, but I think it’s his skin care routine. The other son reminded me of Wayne Szalinski from Honey, I Shrunk The Kids, otherwise known as Rick Moranis.

I was so excited to reference Rick Moranis in this post because I hadn’t heard his name a lately. And then a couple of weeks after I watched this movie, but failed to write this post, he reappeared in a commercial with Ryan Reynolds and it was a big deal. And now Rick is in the news again for being randomly attacked! 

I seem to have a knack for thinking of something and then seeing it appear somewhere else. I was thinking about writing this post tonight and then I went on Twitter and someone I follow was tweeting about The Goonies. How dare they know my inner thoughts?

Alright, enough italics.

Anyway, we’re introduced to a cast of kids who are the focal point of the film.

At this point, I was feeling a very 80s/90s childhood vibe and thinking I was really going to like the movie. Surely, this band of misfits would, inevitably, roam around town without telling their parents and get into some sort of mischief. You could just tell.

At the same time, I was a bit confused because whenever I had heard about The Goonies, I did not envision humans. Is that weird to say? I pictured deformed creatures that had slime coming out of their ears and nostrils.

Surely, they didn’t have Kleenex or Q-Tips at the ready, during allergy season. It’s fine. I’d be able to look past it. Maybe.

But that’s not what this movie is. At all.

I think I was lead astray many years ago when I saw a GIF of the character, Sloth, and didn’t fully understand what I was seeing. So I just pictured a bunch of odd-shaped pumpkin-people comprising the cast.

I imagined a lot of prosthetics.

The premise of the movie is that some property development company, with no soul, wants to build a country club right on top of these kids’ houses.

“Buh-bye, go live somewhere else. We need this land so we can suck at playing tennis and then sit by the pool and complain when an unsupervised kid does a cannon ball and splashes us with water.”

Basically.

The children don’t like that, so they conveniently stumble upon a treasure map in Mikey’s attic, and he obsesses over the loot left behind by One-Eyed Willy.

Mikey would grow up to star in the movie, Rudy, which would be shown in high schools all across Toronto. True story.

I didn’t really like the Mikey character. His gusto style of leadership wasn’t convincing me to follow him. Whenever he tried to rally the troops, it was in a very forceful, “Aw shucks, c’mon guys, we gotta do it for this 300-year-old pirate!”

In retrospect, I can see exactly why he was cast as Rudy.

I might as well talk about his other friends now.

Data was my favourite. He was the Inspector Gadget of the group and always had something up his sleeve, shirt, and coat. Literally. It was a touching moment at the end of the movie when we found out his father is the exact same way.

I didn’t really care for the Mouth character. He was definitely the type of kid who stayed up until 1AM and watched things on TV he was too young for. I feel like we all went to school with a kid like that.

Now on to Chunk. I’m disappointed in myself that I didn’t like this character. I can hear people already shouting, “How could you not like Chunk!?”

I know! I was shocked too.

But I found him to be really annoying. He was a loudmouth and reminded me of some other actors, who I won’t name because that’s mean.

His antics didn’t pull me in. Maybe I’m too old for this because Goldberg in the Mighty Duck movies shares many similar traits and I love that character. But I watched those movies as a kid, so now I see it through the lens of nostalgia, whereas I see Chunk through the lens of an a-ah-ahh-adult.

Sorry, must’ve been a fur ball. 

The whole pursuit for buried treasure, that took the kids underground and into caves for most of the movie, didn’t interest me the way it should have.

Why was there so much lighting down there? I’m not even mad that the booby traps were still fully functional. Just, why was everything so well-lit? It was the antithesis to Ozark if there ever was one.

They finally reach One-Eyed Willy’s pirate ship, which is enclosed in a cave. It was a cool image, but because this isn’t my first rodeo, all that was repeating in my head was, “Wow, look at this massive soundstage.”

The magic of some movies is dependant upon how old the viewer is when they see it for the first time. If I were 10-years-old watching this, I wouldn’t think twice about it. I’d see a ship, I’d see water, and that’s it.

Instead…”Wow, look at this massive soundstage.”

After everyone (I think) walks the plank because The Fratelli family shows up just in the nick of time, Chunk and Sloth show up to save the day after bonding over their love of food while held captive.

The Fratelli clan also end up jumping in the water. At this point, it felt like a synchronized diving competition.

Guys, it’s a massive ship. Hunker down, don’t go near the edge. You don’t have a change of clothes.

Somehow, the cave…wait for it…caves in and no one gets hurt. Instead, they all end up on a beach where the kids’ families are waiting for them. How perfect!

It was a very kids-getting-off-a-roller-coaster-and-looking-for-their-parents-who-are-all-huddled-together vibe.

The kids come out with no treasure, as papers are about to be signed for the country club. But wait! The housekeeper finds some valuables in Mikey’s bag and his dad rips up the contract!

SPA SATURDAYS ARE CANCELLED.

I don’t know how they so quickly determined those items would be worth enough to prevent the foreclosure, but hey, it was 1985. You just had to sound like you knew what you were talking about. No one was going to fact-check you with Google.

The kids don’t have to move and Chunk tells his parents that Sloth is going to move in with them.

Pfft, and they say the relationships on The Bachelor are formed too quickly…

And those are my thoughts on The Goonies.

Let me know what you think. Are you a fan of The Goonies? What makes this a classic film, that I’m clearly missing? What should I watch next?

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29 for 29

My birthday was earlier this month, which means I am contractually obligated to put together a list of things I’ve learned in my life – one for each year – and present them in a, let’s be honest, borderline preachy manner that you can’t judge me for because a) we’ve all done it, and b) I am was the birthday boy.

I will not be doing that today. I am drawing the line.

Twenty-nine is just too many things to think of. I’m old; I don’t have all day to come up with stuff anymore. Heck, it takes me half the day just to figure out what day it is.

So, consider the line drawn.

That’s the first rule of getting older, by the way. You get to change the rules, so they’re always to your liking.

Don’t get mad at me. I don’t make the rules. I just change them.

Bam! Aging.

Before I trail off into who knows what, I’d like to make a PSA (Paul Service Announcement).

Can someone shout out a number? I hear 22 in the back.

Okay, if it is your 22nd birthday, please do not write in your Instagram caption: “I can’t wait to see what my 22nd year has in store for me!”

No, genius, you just completed your 22nd year. You are about to experience your 23rd year. It’s very simple math. Use an abacus.

That’s just a minor pet peeve of mine that I’ve seen too many times.

This Paul Service Announcement has been brought to you by Helium. Helium – We’ll blow you up, up, and away!

Anyway, I’ve had this idea for many years, that we should treat everyone as if every day is their birthday.

You get a cake, and you get a cake, and you get a nice message, and you get a nice message.

We don’t do that, though. It’s too much work.

Maybe it’s just me, but my birthday has lost a little pizazz over the last few years. It’s not that I’m not excited for it, or that people don’t do nice things for me. I just feel like, “Oh, it’s my birthday again. Alright!”

When you’re a kid, birthdays are like if the Super Bowl was on Christmas.

You have a party at the local mini golf place and have pizza and orange pop in plastic cups. And then the plastic cup moves away from you as you’re filling it up because you don’t have a free hand to hold it down, since the large bottle of pop requires both of your small hands to hold it.

That’s how spills happen. Find me a birthday party that didn’t have a spill. You can’t.

Those were the days, though.

Sometimes, my birthday fell on the first day of school. That was always weird because it felt like I was walking around with a secret.

If no one remembers your birthday, you don’t really feel like reminding anyone.

In Grade 12, my third period teacher was the first to realize it was my birthday. He called my name for attendance and then did the double take at the paper in front of him before looking up and saying, “Happy Birthday.”

And of course I was near the back of the class, so everyone turned around and said, “It’s your birthday?”

Proof that there is such thing as a stupid question.

In elementary school, they would announce birthdays over the PA during morning announcements, but because mine normally fell before the first day of school, I never got to hear it.

Oh yeah, before school ended in June, they would announce all the “summer birthdays”. Apparently, I didn’t qualify for that either.

I was in birthday purgatory. Not the summer, but not the school year, either.

I think this might be why I try to remember the birthdays of those closest to me, rather than relying on a social media post to tell me.

It’s a small thing that makes someone feel important. Otherwise, it’s just a lonely experience to live through.

In my adult years, I’m perfectly happy doing nothing on my birthday, except eating at a restaurant and having cake.

I don’t need a party, I need a couch.

Put that on a t-shirt.

As I get older, I find it harder to believe that all these years have passed since I was born.

Sometimes I’ll look at a shirt and think, “I’m a growing boy, I’ll grow into it.”

No, Paul, you’re done.

Time is the strangest thing. Are we sure we’ve calculated the correct number of days in a year? 2010 feels like it was just here. I can re-live memories, and retrace steps, as if they just happened.

Yesterday, I was reunited with mint chocolate swirl ice cream that I last had in 2004 during the MLB playoffs. It was my favourite and I thought it had been discontinued because I hadn’t seen it since.

Last night, I had it while watching an MLB playoff game.

Sixteen years. It doesn’t feel real.

You know that song that asks, “How do you measure a year?” Well, I measure sixteen years by mint chocolate swirl ice cream.

I’m rambling now, but as I look back on my life, I’m happy with the person I am. The world could probably use more people like me, but I’m probably biased, if not correct.

I’m happy with the friends I’ve had and the people I’ve met along the way.

You don’t realize it when you’re playing at recess, or talking in the hallway before school, or sitting next to your friends in a class, but those moments are all temporary.

A lot of the friendships are temporary, too.

We are constantly weaving in and out of people’s lives. Timing is everything.

Think of your closest friends right now. How many things had to go right for you both to meet at the exact moment you did?

Were you placed on the same floor in residence at university? Were you both hired at the same place? Did you sit next to each other in class because your teacher had a seating plan? Did you both start a blog?

I am incredibly lucky to have had some great friends along the way.

And to the friends I’ll make in the future, I will find you. That came across more threatening than I intended, but I’ll leave it in there.

I saw a tweet the other day that said something along the lines of: if you’re not where you want to be, it’s because this isn’t the version of you that makes it.

I feel like I’ve needed to hear that for the last decade.

It’s easy to say, “Don’t compare yourself to others” and “Everyone moves at a different pace”, but those phrases still require you to look outward and scroll through feeds of photos that you’re unable to take.

If I look at my life in reverse, I can see the moments where the version of me changed and a new door was opened.

That gives me comfort and reassurance for the future. Everything happens the way it is meant to happen.

Anyway, I’ve been the same way since I was a baby, except I don’t burp in church anymore. That’s a story for a talk show appearance.

I was a few months old, relax.

Now I have to think of a new conclusion.

Okay, got one.

Since my birthday, I’ve found myself smiling at the TV while watching shows, and just the other night, I fell asleep on my back.

If those aren’t signs of aging, I don’t know what are.

Age is just a number.

It’s the new habits that immediately become second-nature, that should slightly terrify you.

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50 Thoughts XXXIV

1. Sometimes all you need is someone to believe in you.

2. BBM group chats were electric back in 2012. Someone would leave the chat and everyone else would be like, “Wowww, why’d they leave? Invite them back.”

3. “Construction Never Ends” to the tune of “High School Never Ends”.

4. The word “harbinger” is only ever used in one context.

5. Cavan Biggio is turning into my favourite Blue Jay. He plays such an intellectual style of baseball. I appreciate it.

6. You should watch the Sam Roberts – Annoying Eater series on YouTube. His entire diet, his whole life, is centred around the same 5-7 items. In this series, he tries pasta and hamburgers, among other common foods, for the first time.

7. Ever notice how the last person to join a long line always takes a panoramic video/picture of the line? They try and be subtle, but I see them.

7.5 So, if you ever find yourself in a long line, keep your eye on the last person to join. You’ll be entertained.

8. Remember when songs used to fade out at the end, instead of coming to a distinct stop? Made me think the song continued on elsewhere.

9. The sweat stains on the shirts of characters in TV shows are unrealistic.

10. The first time I ever saw Chris Paul play was in the 2004 NCAA Tournament, for Wake Forest. He took over the game and would not let his team lose. He did the same thing last night for Oklahoma City.

11. Friendly reminder that Toy Story 3 was gruesome.

12. The After The Final Rose episode, from Jason Mesnick’s season of The Bachelor, does not feel like it was eleven years ago. One of the craziest episodes in television history.

13. It feels like no one has the same stove, or fridge, as anyone else. As if we all own a unique model.

14. I had a country western standoff with a stray cat a few weeks ago. We circled each other, before going our separate ways.

15. Whenever I see Helio Castroneves in an IndyCar race, I think of the time he was on Live! with Regis and Kelly in 2001 and they set him up on a blind date. I do not know why I remember this.

16. When the person comes out for the second round of Fast Money on Family Feud, they never peak at the board to see what score their family member just put up. They always wait for the host to tell them.

16.5 The first thing I’d do is look at the score.

17. I always pronounce the word, “scarce”, wrong.

18. If it’s not Puro-now, it must be Purolator.

19. I’m not excited about the direction in which technology is headed.

20. The McDonald’s restaurants that were two floors were the best.

21. “Everyone loves Marineland” is a bit presumptive, isn’t it? If you’re not Canadian, you might not understand this one.

22. I miss the days when Formula 1 teams had a spare car, in case one of their drivers crashed. It was always like, “Ooohh he’s in the spare car now, he might struggle a bit.”

23. Took one step down to the basement, saw a bird fly across at the bottom, and turned right back around, as if I was the Abe Simpson GIF.

24. It’s weird watching basketball games from 20 years ago and everyone is taking shots from just in front of the three-point line. It was as if moving back eight inches would put them out of their range.

25. The episode, Snoopy’s Reunion, where Snoopy and his family are adopted one by one from Daisy Hill Puppy Farm, was always sad to watch as a kid, but now I realize how many life lessons were embedded in the story.

25.5 Shoutout to Olaf playing the jug.

26. “It’s time to play some tag!” – J.J. Watt

27. I was bothered by the lack of urgency exhibited by most of the contestants on Floor is Lava. 

28. In a few years, athletes will probably wear contact lenses with cameras in them, to give the viewer at home a brand-new perspective.

29. I need to go to the Olympics one day. Preferably for free.

30. How many people complaining about wearing a mask, also cover their face with a scarf in the winter?

31. It’s adorable that they thought we would have flying cars by now, when we still don’t even have equality.

32. I am so tired of reading PR statements.

33. Is that a raccoon, or a really big cat?

34. What if “Hotdogs” were supposed to be called “Hotlogs”, but someone misread someone’s messy handwriting?

35. A few months ago, I stepped outside and as soon as my first foot touched the ground, I was met with the loudest crack of thunder I’ve ever heard, and a bright light. I thought I stepped on a land mine.

36. Losing weight is not something I anticipated when this pandemic began.

37. Imagine how much money has been made off of whoopee cushion sales.

38. Good Morning Football is a fantastic show, hosted by: Kay Adams, Nate Burleson, Kyle Brandt, and Peter Schrager.

39. It pains me to see how watered down, and stale, Big Brother has become.

40. Did I not make enough pasta, or is the pot just really big?

41. You should listen to this song: Come On Out – The Airborne Toxic Event.

42. I’ve been saying for at least 10 years that sports video games should be like GTA, where you live the life of the player outside the arena. It finally looks like they’re going down that route with NHL 21.

42.5 I haven’t bought a video game in six years.

43. I feel bad for the first-year university students who won’t get to experience it in person this year. And then they’ll show up for second-year, still not knowing anyone, or the campus. That’s rough.

44. Once you view trees as giant pieces of broccoli, you’ll never see them as “just trees” ever again.

45. I am way too excited for Fantasy Football this year.

46. Sports need to be about something more than just money. I think we’re finally seeing that, across the board.

47. I’d like to lead a focus group with the people who would type “c u l8r” instead of typing out the full words.

48. Buffets are going to be obsolete, aren’t they?

49. In Halloween, Michael Myers looks like a plumber who got electrocuted.

50. Life is short, but it takes forever.

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The Horse Episode

I like to think we have been in the Golden Age of television for the last twenty years, or so. There are shows about everything, that appeal to everyone. What hasn’t been done yet? Very little.

We now live in a world where we ask our friends for show recommendations. I never did that when I was a kid. I didn’t know what other kids were watching, unless I went to their house.

One time, I went to a friend’s house after school and he had us stop playing road hockey outside, so we could go inside and watch Pokemon. I had never seen Pokemon before, but this half-hour episode confirmed what I already knew – I didn’t like it at all.

Speaking of shows I didn’t care about: I once won a draw during a Scholastic Book Fair at school and my prize was a Spongebob poster. To this day, I have never watched a single episode of Spongebob.

Nowadays, we each have our small group of friends who we trust to recommend shows to us. And then that person automatically becomes a sounding board when we need to discuss elements of the show.

It is sorta like the adult version of sharing your snack at school.

Let me just say, you can learn a lot about someone based on the shows they suggest. A few years ago, I was told to watch Black Mirror and the first episode completely turned me off from it.

This is what you insisted I watch? What is wrong with you?

Recently, I was introduced to the show, Hannibal, by my internet friend, Becky. I wasn’t really interested in it, and then Becky told me about Episode 8 from Season 2 and it was one of those, “Wow, you think you know someone…” moments because the show sounded morbidly disturbing and just so unBecky-like. More on this later.

Here is what Becky has to say about all this:

I was in between shows on Netflix earlier this month and was just browsing around when I stumbled upon Hannibal. I hadn’t watched it when it was on TV but knew about it. The show involved Hannibal Lecter, the cannibalistic serial killer from The Silence of the Lambs (a movie I also haven’t seen). So I decided to give it a shot, and surprisingly it didn’t freak me out too much.

So, naturally, that meant I told Paul about it, because why not? I think he thought I was crazy for even watching it in the first place. Then things got interesting when I sent him a message that said “In case you were wondering how Hannibal is going…” with a screencap from S2E8 that said “…is your social worker in that horse?” That got Paul’s attention, and I may have peer pressured him into watching the episode. And it’s a wild ride for sure.

That’s how this post came about. I have since abandoned Hannibal after the first episode of season 3. There were just less social workers in horses.

You read that correctly. In this episode, there was a human body INSIDE A HORSE.

WHAT?

The same person who recommended The Good Place to me, is now persuading me to watch THIS?

And watch it I did.

I’ll admit, I was a bit too eager to watch it. I did it right away. I don’t know what this says about me, but let’s not dwell on it. This is a “dwell free” zone.

NO DWELLING, JUST YELLING.

I don’t mind horror, but there’s horror, and then there’s, “Somebody check on the writers and make sure they are okay.”

This episode fell in the latter.

So, someone found a dead horse and quickly realized that something was inside it. Ta-da! It’s a dead woman.

You know the joke: “How do you fit an elephant in a refrigerator? Open the door and take the giraffe out.”

The same thing was going through my head, as I tried to figure how a person could end up inside a horse. The only possible way would be to open up the horse, put the body inside, and then sew it shut. That is what they did. Thus, ruining the elephant in a refrigerator joke forever.

Okay, not forever. Maybe momentarily.

Yes, I did try to picture a person trying to go in a horse, via the mouth. Simply not plausible. Myth busted. Wrong show. You get the point. If it were a big bad alligator, then yes, the person could go in the main entrance.

Look at how this show made my mind spiral. JUST LOOK.

The episode goes on and what happens?

WE GET A SECOND BODY INSIDE A HORSE.

This time, the person is alive! It is a man.

The man basically unzips the horse from the inside – I’m shocked the prop department didn’t take a zipper off a 4XL winter jacket and put it on the horse – and crawls out, covered in blood.

They stood up right away and weren’t that disoriented, nor did they seem to be too traumatized. I feel like they would’ve been more bothered, had they been in a Porta Potty that got tipped over by the wind.

Then again, I’ve never crawled out of a horse before, nor been to acting school, so I don’t know what the proper reaction is. Do you seek out the nearest washroom to wash off? Or do you bathe in your own tears and wait for someone to wrap a blanket around you?

In this case, the guy was arrested, so they probably hosed him down outside the police station.

I later realized this episode aired in 2014 on network TV, in all its gory goodness. That surprised me.

What if a kid was flipping channels and tuned in just as a human-being was getting out of the dead horse? They’d think the show was “Extreme Hide-N-Seek” or “How It’s Made“.

“Why was that man in the horsey?” the kid would ask their parents. And then the parents would be paranoid that their child is going to be forever traumatized by such a thing.

The next day, they’d plan a family outing to the carnival, so the kid can ride the merry-go-round, because if they don’t immediately face their fear and “get back in the saddle”, it’ll become a psychological block that stays with them forever.

Oh yes, I have thought this through.

What an episode.

Again, if you’re interested: Hannibal – Season 2, Episode 8.

I have no plans to watch any other episodes in the series. Once you start off with “body inside a horse”, there’s no going back.

Now, I have to think of a title for this post and talk myself out of going with “Two Horse Meal” because that’s too clever terrible.

“Won’t You Be My Neigh-bour” is also bad, right?

Thanks for putting me in this situation, Becky.

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First Time Watching: Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Let’s get weird. In this edition of “First Time Watching”, I sat down and watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s. It was a long movie and I had to view it in two sittings because I got tired halfway through. Next time I’ll use toothpicks to keep my eyelids open.

Here are my thoughts on the movie, in no specific order, and without making the plot entirely clear.

I had heard about this movie before, but never knew what it was about. My best guess was that someone went to a restaurant called, Tiffany’s, for breakfast. Almost like if Gilmore Girls was called, Breakfast at Luke’s.

Failing that theory, I thought maybe there was a girl named Tiffany, who hosted breakfast for her friends. I’m picturing platters of croissants, and small coffee cups that force your fingers to cramp up after holding them.

Neither of those things ended up being true.

The title of the movie refers to a woman who goes to Tiffany & Co. in the morning. A jewelry store.

THEY DON’T EVEN SERVE FOOD THERE.

What a misleading title, though you could probably write a whole paper on the underlying meaning behind it. I won’t, but you could.

The main character is Holly Golightly. Google says she is a call girl and criminal. I’ve heard people say that name before, but I just thought it was a figure of speech, like the name “Karen”.

I never knew it was stolen from a movie.

You don’t hear people saying, “Wow, that guy is such a Buzz Lightyear.” Why? Why don’t people say that?

Anyway, Holly’s real name is Lula Mae and she married a rich old man – I have his name written down as “Doc” – when she was 14. Their marriage was annulled “years ago” but the old man comes back and tries to take her away. She refuses and he accepts it without putting up much of a fuss.

If this movie were set in 2020, he would’ve kidnapped her in a suitcase and boarded a train. So, it was nice to see that situation not escalate into something dark.

Also, that old man was a loser and deserved some sort of comeuppance. He body-shamed Holly, multiple times, and suggested she eat something.

Hey pal, go tie up your tongue with a shoelace and shut your mouth with velcro, we don’t need to hear your suggestions.

Anyway, let’s talk about Paul.

It was a pleasant surprise to find that I shared a name with a character in a movie. That doesn’t happen too much.

Paul and Holly (Polly?) formed a connection fairly quickly, after he moved into her apartment building in New York. They seemed to be in a final two alliance, even though she was non-committal.

She called him “Fred” a lot, which confused me. Fred is her brother and doesn’t appear in the movie. Modern day movies should steal this idea. Introduce characters, but never give them a face.

That way, when you make 18 sequels, you have new characters to develop and don’t have to rely on far-fetched storylines. You’re welcome.

There were multiple occasions where Paul was reading something, whether it was a post-it note, a check, or a newspaper, and the camera zoomed in on it and stayed there long enough so the viewer could read it.

I loved that.

Paul took Holly to Tiffany’s with a $10 budget. They ordered two grilled cheeses, without the cheese because that’s all they could affo…oh wait, they didn’t do that because Tiffany’s isn’t a restaurant. Sorry, we covered this earlier. I’m just using repetition for rhetorical effect.

The salesman offered them a Sterling Silver Telephone Dialer.

I was going to make a joke that nowadays we just use our fingers, but after reading some definitions and looking at photos, I have no clue what a Telephone Dialer actually does, so I don’t know if my joke works or not.

I feel so young.

Anyway, they don’t buy that. Instead, Paul says they could have something engraved, but the salesman says he must buy something first.

El Cheapo Grande finally pulls out a ring he got in a Cracker Jack box and asks to have it engraved.

I think that gesture meant a lot to Holly because before this, she just wanted to marry a rich man. Paul was winning her over with small gestures that didn’t cost any money because he had none.

Oh, did I mention that Paul is a writer? Well, at least when he feels like it. He’s very good at not being a writer, while claiming to be a writer.

I felt attacked.

Paul brought Holly to a library and showed her the book he wrote, Nine Lives. What a smooth cat. Holly was very loud in the library and not in a “the audio guy needs to pick up my voice with the boom mic” way but, rather, in a “no one has ever told me that libraries are supposed to be a quiet place” way.

Hey, no wonder he was cheap at the jewellery store – people read his book for free.

After autographing his own book – also known as defacing public property – the two kind-of lovebirds run into a “5 & 10” store with the intention of stealing something.

What a couple of goons!

By the way, is a “5 & 10” store the equivalent to a dollar store, or did the NFL have a 5th down back then?

I’ll pause, so that joke can sink in.

They ended up stealing a couple of masks because they knew I’d watch this movie for the first time during a global pandemic and masks are a thing.

Again, I felt attacked.

Anyway, Holly gets arrested. Not for stealing the masks, but for her role in a drug ring. Don’t worry, she gets out of jail – almost immediately.

She hops in a taxi with Paul and her plan is to escape to Mexico. He doesn’t want her to go because he loves her. She is resisting because “she doesn’t want to be put in a cage”.

If only this movie had acknowledged the fact that their couple name is “Polly”, that line would’ve had an extra layer of meaning.

Paul says he doesn’t want to put her in a cage, he wants to love her.

“SAME THING.”

Wow, that cut deep.

She has the taxi driver pull over, so she can open the door and send her cat on its way. Oh yeah, she has a cat. It doesn’t have a name. She calls it, “Cat”. Not even, “Cool Cat”. For shame.

With the nameless kitten out of the picture, the taxi keeps going to the airport, so she can flee to Mexico.

But wait! Not even four minutes later – of course I checked – Paul has convinced her to stay and be with him. She gets out of the taxi and wouldn’t you know it – it’s raining. Pathetic fallacy acting pathetic, once again.

Holly runs down the sidewalk, calling out for Cat. She finds the cat very quickly because the movie is already running a bit long.

Holly and Paul kiss in the rain, while standing next to trash cans in an ally, as the cat is squished between their bodies and nuzzling their chins with its head.

It’s a very 1961 Hollywood ending.

My final verdict is that I liked the movie. I didn’t always know why some things were happening, but I enjoyed the ride.

Most movies make the viewer feel like they are witnessing the most important days of the characters’ lives. Almost as if nothing was going on in their life until the cameras started rolling.

I did not get that sense with Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Watching this movie was like we were window shopping and then something caught our eye, so we went in. Does that make sense?

It didn’t feel like they were trying to advance a plot or create scenarios for the sake of entertainment. Everything felt natural, almost dull, but not in a bad way.

A couple of notes pertaining to music:

1. They played Moon River at least three times throughout the movie. I notice these things.

2. The song, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, had been popping up in my recommended Spotify playlists and I never really cared for it until after watching the movie. I looked up the lyrics and all they are is one person rehashing an old conversation with a girl about how they have nothing in common, except they both liked this movie.

More musicians should just rehash conversations and turn them into songs. It could go something like this:

You went out to the store
and I asked you to buy me some chips
but you said the flavour I wanted was not there
(was not there-ere-ere)
so I asked for a picture of the shelf
and you sent me one a little bit blurry
(little bit blurry-urry-urry)
but I could tell I didn’t like the flavours
so I said don’t worry about it
(worry about it-it-it) 

Bam, song.

When they give me my Grammy for that, I’m going to say it took me 56 seconds to write and that everyone else in the room isn’t on my level. Set your PVR, DVR, and VHS tape. There will be a commotion.

Anyway, I think I’ve run out of things to say about Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Good movie; don’t think I’d watch it again unless I was forced.

I’ve decided to start ranking the movies I’m watching for the first time. I reserve the right to abandon the rankings at any time, without warning, so don’t get too attached to them.

Thank you for reading!

First Time Watching Rankings
1. Back to the Future
2. Groundhog Day
3. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
4. Jurassic Park
5. The Matrix

Have you seen Breakfast at Tiffany’s? What did you think of it? What should I watch next?

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First Time Watching: Groundhog Day

I am taking a break from science fiction films. I would say it was an amicable split, but they’ve been haunting my dreams. There was one where a crocodile was chasing me, so I jumped a fence, but then it turned into a dinosaur and knocked over the fence like a domino.

It was a Gatorsaurus. I woke up and didn’t even know if it was a real thing, so I Googled it.

Well lo and behold, it was a monster in the 1960 film, The Lost World. The fact that I subconsciously created a Gatorsaurus, somehow combines two of the movies I’ve already seen for this series – Jurassic Park and Back to the Future.

I’m sure if I tried hard enough, I could make a connection to The Matrix, but the less I think about that movie, the better off I’ll be.

A few days ago, I watched Groundhog Day for the first time in my life. I now present to you my scattered thoughts, as they pertain to the film.

For some reason, I always thought Tom Hanks was the main character. Even when I saved the movie to my list on Netflix, I thought it was his face on the graphic.

Nope!

It was Bill Murray. You may remember him from such places as Chicago Cubs baseball games, or Space Jam. He was the guy who subbed himself into the game for the Tune Squad, even though he wasn’t on the official roster.

Yes, only I would associate Bill Murray with those two things and fail to mention his roles in other movies. You could probably guess why.

The opening credits reminded me of The Simpsons, as clouds filled the screen and names appeared on top of them.

I know Springfield is supposed to be a fictional town on The Simpsons, but in real life, it’s in Pennsylvania, which is also the setting for this movie.

Coincidence? I think so, but I also think not!

Bill Murray is a weatherman named, Phil (Coincidence? I think not!) who doesn’t seem to care about others. I guess that’s why he’s a weatherman – he doesn’t have to talk to people.

He just yells at the clouds, like Abe Simpson.

COINCIDENCE? I THINK…I’ll stop doing this now…NOT!

Phil, cameraman Larry, and new producer Rita, are all off to Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania to report on the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.

Nope, check that – they are going there to cover Groundhog Day. Silly me.

It is clear – to me, at least – that Phil likes Rita, but in an, “I don’t want her to know I like her, so I’ll do nothing to tip her off” sorta way. And since that is the starting point of their “relationship”, you just knew they’d get together by the end of the movie.

So there they are, in Punxsutawney. The most impossible 12-letter word to spell correctly on the first try.

Before we go any further, I must tell you that the concept of groundhog day has always confused me.

If the groundhog sees its shadow, that means it’s a sunny day, so shouldn’t that be a sign that spring is coming soon? That makes logical sense. But no, it’s a sign that we’re getting six more weeks of winter and grey skies. Huh?

I think we have this backwards, y’all. No wonder the prognostications are always wrong.

Also, can we define “sees its shadow”? Does that mean the groundhog actually looks down and makes some sort of affirmative signal to the official Groundhoggers holding clipboards (I don’t know what they’re called, or that they’re even holding clipboards, but it sounds right) that it, indeed, saw its shadow with its own two eyes?

Or, are we – humans – the ones who observe that there is a shadow and proclaim the groundhog saw it?

What if there was a shadow, but the groundhog was too distracted by something else and didn’t look down at the shadow? Then what? A false positive? A positive false?

Groundhog Day was the original “Fake News” but no one wants to accept it because it gets a bunch of people out of the office, and allows reporters to smile on camera and actually mean it.

I said what I said.

So, I was looking forward to how this movie portrayed the moment where the groundhog was rudely awoken from its slumber, to act as a prop for a yearly lighting experiment.

One of the official Groundhoggers held Punxsutawney Phil up to their ear and acted as if the groundhog whispered to them.

“Six more weeks of winter!”

Are you kidding me?

Did the production crew forget a background light and improvised on the fly, or are we just supposed to accept the fact that a groundhog shares bad news, via a whisper? You would think they’d send an email.

Anyway, the whole point of the film is that Weatherman Phil keeps reliving the same day, over and over again, starting at 6AM.

I’ve always heard the phrase, “It’s like groundhog day” and I knew that it meant something kept happening, but I didn’t know what it had to do with Groundhog Day – the tradition.

Turns out, it has nothing to do with it. It has to do with the movie called, Groundhog Day.

Oh.

STOP ASSUMING EVERYONE HAS SEEN EVERY MOVIE.

I feel like I shout that in each of these posts.

The concept was cool and was explored exactly how I’d hoped it would be. Phil slowly tries to get away with more and more stuff, knowing he won’t be held responsible, and no one will remember.

One of my new favourite movie quotes emerged, when he was talking to Mrs. Lancaster at the hotel.

“Do you ever have déjà vu, Mrs. Lancaster?”

“I don’t think so, but I could check with the kitchen.”

That is so good! I am still laughing about it.

As Phil keeps reliving the same day, he turns into a terrible human being who treats Rita like crumbs at the bottom of a chip bag.

After his many attempts to win her over end with a slap to the face, he turns suicidal, and we watch him kill himself multiple times. I know the movie is a comedy and it’s from 1993, but I could’ve done without the whole suicide montage.

Once Phil realizes he has no chance with Rita, and that he can’t kill himself, he turns into a good person and uses his knowledge of how the day will unfold to save others from their misfortunes.

Through this, he is able to win Rita over and she agrees to stay with him all night.

Phil’s radio goes off at 6AM and Rita is still in bed with him. It is no longer Groundhog Day. Phil is not stuck in an endless loop. Life is back to normal.

Yay!

So, what caused him to keep reliving the same day? I don’t know. They didn’t tell us.

You would think they’d tell us! Surely, there must have been a hint in the early scenes of the movie? Don’t think so.

That was disappointing.

I looked it up and apparently they were going to reveal that Phil’s scorned ex-girlfriend put a curse on him, but they cut it out. Thank goodness.

I also read that one idea was to reveal that Rita was living inside her own loop. I would’ve loved that. I even wondered if that’s what was going on, when Rita kept rejecting Phil. There was a look she gave in one scene that I thought hinted at her being in her own loop.

Alas, no.

I’m sitting here trying to figure out why Groundhog Day was the annual tradition they decided to associate with the plot of repeating the same day. You’d think they’d go for Daylight Saving Time, or February 29th.

Maybe I’m missing something in terms of symbolism.

All things considered, I liked the movie! It was fun, it was 90s based, and I knew what was going on the whole time.

I do wish there was some explanation for the main plot point, but anything they presented would’ve been hokey, so I’m fine that they didn’t.

On a random note, Bill Murray had very good posture in this movie. Just thought I’d throw that in.

Anyway, those are my thoughts on Groundhog Day. I hope you enjoyed it.

See you next week, as this series continues!

Have you seen Groundhog Day? What did you think of it?

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Spread Your Smart

The last four months have really highlighted the fact that people do not listen. Why should they? They know everything. Read their social media accounts. Listen to them at the store. Watch them sneak on the nightly news, when they are interviewed in a parking lot.

The level of arrogance and incompetence that has risen amid this pandemic is embarrassing.

Frankly, I am tired of it.

There is a severe lack of respect for anyone tasked with ensuring our safety right now. You want to second guess medical professionals because, somehow, you and your non-existent medical degree know what’s best?

Fine, go ahead. I am done fighting it. Let the ignorance reign supreme. We are here now.

No one likes to be told what to do – I get it – but life is a team sport, and we cannot all be the Captain of the team. Sometimes, you have to be a good teammate. You have to be someone who cheers for the success of others and helps them along the way.

And if you do not know how to be a good teammate after being involved in dozens and dozens of group projects in school, then you were probably the one who relied on someone else to do your part.

Humanity is constantly in a tug of war contest with itself. The funny thing is, we all want the same thing. I am not talking about the extravagant things. I am talking about the core of our very essence.

We want to be happy. Right? That is at the root of everything.

You can create a flow chart from here to Timbuktu, branching off of the word, “Happy”. I think this is why people do not listen. When they hear something that takes away from their comfort, or detracts from their temporary state of happiness, they push back.

“How dare you be happy, at the expense of me?”

Grow up, man. People talk about how millennials were coddled with participation trophies, well what excuse does every other generation have for behaving the same way?

I remember in high school, we learned about “globalization” and how the world felt like it was getting closer together because of the internet, and our ability to reach people far away, in seconds.

On paper, it sounded magnificent.

But in a lot of ways, I feel like we have squandered the opportunity. It just feels like there is constant yelling going on. People forgetting to think before they speak, or choosing not to change their words, before pressing, “Send”.

As I said before, there is a lot of arrogance and incompetence out there, and most of it is a result of an unwillingness to listen and understand.

No one ever changes their mind on an issue because someone replies to them on social media with the opposing view. I do not know why people waste their time trying to convince others of something they will never believe.

To that end, it feels like negativity will win the day and those of us seeking an alternative must do so by either looking away, or scrolling faster.

With all of that in mind, an idea came to me. It may not be original, but it is conveniently packaged in a three-word phrase that you can tuck away in your wallet.

Spread Your Smart.

What do I mean by “Smart”?

1. The things about which we are knowledgeable. They could be books, video games, the thing we went to school for, cooking, art, sports, history, the bus schedule, animals, or even something as simple as tying your shoe. You get the point.

2. Our passions and interests, most of which will be things we are knowledgable about.

3. How we treat others. Do we say “thank you”? Do we hold doors open for people? Do we help the elderly down a snow bank? Are we nice? Are we welcoming?

Your “Smart” is, essentially, the things that make you, you. Except, we’re leaving the negativity at home.

Spread your smart, like butter on toast. Make sure it reaches every corner.

Think of this as a version of, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Share your knowledge, share your passions, and share your kindness.

This is not about all of us staying in our own lane, although it kind of is. We are all experts in our own way. Where we get in trouble is when we try and be experts on things we know nothing about, and then disguise it as an opinion under “freedom of speech.”

Those long answer questions on exams in school, worth 15 marks, only turned us into terrific bull-poopers, who could make stuff up on the spot and try and pass them off as factual, or relevant. In actuality, we were just trying to fill up the empty lines because we felt like we had to.

I read in a book once, something along the lines of, “The world is full of opportunities just begging you to be quiet. Seize every single one of those opportunities.”

In other words, we won’t learn anything, if we’re always the one talking.

So, give yourself a friendly reminder to zip it, every now and then.

They say that we are who we surround ourselves with. Social media has given us the opportunity to surround ourselves with people we will never physically stand next to.

By spreading your smart, you could be adding puzzle pieces to those around you. Because aren’t we all just a giant puzzle, taking pieces from others?

I should note that “Spread Your Smart” does not just entail sharing pieces of yourself. It means you are growing your knowledge base, by listening, or doing your own research. I hear the internet has everything.

Or maybe you are spreading your smart by finally opening your eyes to hobbies you stubbornly ignored in the past, just because they were easier to scoff at, or joke about.

I may not be a perfect representative for this “Spread Your Smart” idea. Until recently, I felt uncomfortable sharing all of my blog posts on Twitter.

Sounds silly, right?

I felt like I was bothering people by filling their news feed with a link to a post about stuff they probably wouldn’t read. The whole, “no one cares, though” phrase echoed in my head and still does with some things.

Somehow, I got over it because – I care, though.

Still, I feel stifled when it comes to other interests. I wish I could just tweet about wrestling – of all things – but, “no one cares, though.” It is tough when you have an interest and there is no one with whom to talk about it.

Maybe you can relate.

The thing I have learned from WordPress is that if someone writes about something they are passionate about, then maybe one of their readers will develop an interest in it, too.

This community can be a bit peer-pressurey in a very subtle, but good way.

Heck, I did not think about running, until a few bloggers wrote about it. All of a sudden, there I was running down the sidewalk, breathing in freshly cut grass, and thinking about how dumb I was to keep running further and further away from the place I would ultimately be returning to.

Why?

Because someone else “spread their smart” and it had an impact on me.

That is the point I am trying to make with this post, which is coming off as a bit preachy, but ignore that. I SAID IGNORE IT.

In a world of influencers and marketers, who never try to hide their desire to sell us something, I think we are most influenced by those who are not trying to sell us anything.

We are influenced by personal stories, or at least, I am.

This whole, “yelling at people until they change their mind and see things your way” is a waste of time.

Sure, that technique may work on large corporations, or anyone who has a Public Relations department. But on an individual person, whose customer service representative is themselves – with a louder voice – it is not worth it.

All these online profiles, and instead of sharing the things that make them happy, a lot of people go out of their way to upset others.

Will that ever stop, or have we given up hope?

The idea that one person can change the world is a daunting one. Do any of us actually believe we are that “one”. Probably not. There are millions of dominos to knock over.

But what if we were all one domino, on the outer edges, and fell at the same time?

And maybe we do it by focusing on what makes us happy and sharing the things we know, the things we like, and the way in which we treat others.

Imagine how that could spread.

Spread Your Smart.

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments