Tuesday, November 30, 2010

FUNNY FEET

Gentle Readers,

One evening when I was about 12 years old, my dad and I were sitting next to each other on the couch watching TV and my mom was in a chair next to us. My dad and I each had one foot up on the coffee table. At the same moment, we noticed the hilarious juxtaposition of his huge foot next to my rather tiny one. We started to laugh. Mother told us to be quiet and we laughed harder. Daddy said, But Mummy look . . .

And she said, Shut the hell up. I'm trying to watch television.

She missed out on a funny moment, but I'm glad my dad and I didn't.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Monday, November 29, 2010

UF OH OH NO

Gentle Readers,

Please explain to me why so many people believe in UFOs and visits from creatures from other planets and some crazy-ass folks even think the creatures from other planets have taken them to their spaceships and probed them. From what I've heard, these are quite common beliefs, and I don't get it. Are all these people idiots and/or crazy?

I can think of all sorts of explanations for believing you've been a visitor to a spaceship.You're sound asleep and you have a dream so strong that when you wake up you believe the dream has actually occurred and you can't shake it off. I've never dreamed that I was on a spaceship, but I've certainly had dreams and nightmares that seemed very, very real to me at the time. I can't remember what I was dreaming about this morning; I just remember that it seemed to be happening in my waking life -- and then the phone rang and the events that seemed to be happening went poof. If the phone hadn't awakened me so suddenly, I probably would have spent more time thinking the dream was reality. I've even heard noises in my dreams, like alarms going off, but the noise only occurred in my dream.

As for the probing, maybe your spouse did a little fooling around while you were asleep and you were the fool aroundee. Or maybe you have hemorrhoids. The possibilities are endless.

Another possibility is that some people have watched too many movies and TV shows about the paranormal and it's confused them. And maybe they're a bit delusional. Hey, I've been married and I've worked in the healthcare field: I know delusions.

As for the many people who think they see UFOs, do I have a story for you. In the place where I used to live, an air base was close by. We were driving along the highway near the base one evening and there above the trees was some sort of hovercraft. Fascinating. We had never seen such a thing before, and we knew it was an experimental aircraft.

I remember hearing on some TV show that all these people reported seeing a UFO, I think it took off from the airport in Chicago or whatever, and lots of people called the police and reporters called government officials and they denied having experimental aircraft taking off. Well, of course they deny it. It's an experiment. They aren't going to give away the details until they can unveil this wonderful new aircraft - or maybe they will never unveil their wonderful new aircraft because they actually want to keep it a secret so they can pick up every man I ever dated or married and probe him before flying him straight to the moon Alice.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Sunday, November 28, 2010

CARTS AWAAAAAAY!

Gentle Ladies and Gents,

I come to you today with a pet peeve: I do not like, I detest, I absolutely abhor the leaving of shopping carts in the parking lot.

Now that doesn't mean I'll be irritated if you leave your cart in the cart return center that most parking lots have. That's fine.

But gol' darn it, and I am warning you but good, DO NOT LEAVE YOUR CART IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LOT. It's rude. It's obnoxious. Carts sometimes take off on their own and hit cars or attempt to run down little old ladies or small children. Furthermore, they're usually in a spot that prohibits someone from pulling into a parking space, and at this time of year,
that
parking
space
may
be
the
very
last
one
in
the
entire
parking
lot.

So beware, beware. If you're going to take a cart out out, then be prepared to put it back back. It will not hurt you to walk a few extra steps to the cart return or to take the cart back into the store, where it's all ready for another shopper to use. Even better, when you arrive at the store, help out someone who is unloading a cart and offer to take the cart for that person and give first consideration to the elderly and people with small children.

But do not take the cart until they are finished unloading. A word to the wise.

By the way, just want to mention that the search terms gentle readers use to find my message center appear on my Stats page. A recent search that led to lovely Lola was How To Prevent Foot Fetishism. Hmmmmm - must have come up because of Franklin's great and enduring love for my feet. I found one of my socks in the back yard recently - filthy and soaking wet and very much loved.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Saturday, November 27, 2010

THE COMB BACK

Gentle Readers,

Have you noticed that more and more men are partaking of the comb back, or am I so oblivious to what goes on around me that I didn't see it until algore did it?

Men have done the comb over for years - you know, comb the wisps of hair left on the side over the bald spot on top. Kind of sad and the butt of many jokes.

But now men also do the comb back. I realized this was occurring because algore and Tipper once visited Favorite Young Woman's prep school for a football game. Al III was quarterback for the other team; they lost.

I was in reportorial mode at the time and al was running for president. I wanted an interview so desperately that I would have eaten dirt to get it. But, no. al and Tipper were there for the game and nothing but the game and they wouldn't even give a 5-minute interview to the school paper and if they had I probably would have killed the student reporter and absconded with his pitiful little notes.

So after F.Y.W.'s sporting event, we hung around the football field, waiting for the automaton to arrive. Some black cars with tinted windows approached and the guys who never take off their sun glasses got out and then al and Tipper came out. Some people applauded and called out greetings and when algore turned around to wave I noticed that he had quite the circular bald spot at the back of the top of his head. I thought, Oh my - algore is going bald.

Then when algore started doing all of his save the Earth stuff even though he lives in a gigantic mansion that uses all sorts of energy and leaves a carbon footprint bigger than the old bald spot, I noticed that al had started doing a comb back. Yes, he was taking the hair left in the front and letting it grow kind of long and then I suppose putting a bunch of gel on it to keep it in place over the bald spot, which no doubt has grown over the years at the same rate al's waistline has expanded.

But then I started noticing some other men doing the comb back.

Is this a trend? Explanation, please.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Friday, November 26, 2010

COME OUT, COME OUT, WHEREVER YOU ARE, AND MEET THE YOUNG LADY WHO FELL FROM A STAR

Gentle Readers,

Here we be at 200+ posts. When I reached #100, I did not know about the blogging tradition of revealing 100 things about yourself. Had I known, you probably would have fallen asleep by #9.

So, I most certainly will not reveal 200 things about myself. How about two instead?

1. "She fell from the sky, she fell very far, and Kansas she says is the name of the star. (Munchkins) - Kansas she says is the name of the star." Yes, it is true: I fell from a star called Kansas and from the time I was 21 I fell from star after star after star to various places.

2. I have allergies and sometimes when I laugh, snot shoots out my nose.

New Gentle Readers are always welcome here, and if you write, I will gladly create links to your blog (unless it's really trashy and dirty and then I might keep it all to myself).

Infinities of love on Black Friday,

Lola

Thursday, November 25, 2010

ARE YOU CARRIE, SAMANTHA, CHARLOTTE, OR MIRANDA?

Gentle Readers,

If you don't understand the meaning of my title, then you never watched Sex and the City.

And if you never watched Sex and the City, then you haven't had as much fun and laughter in your life as you could have.

I think those of us who watched faithfully tend to relate more strongly to one of our four friends. As a writer, I suppose I should be Carrie, but I'm not. I long to be Samantha, but in my heart of hearts, I know I'm Charlotte. A coworker once said to me, Lola, what are you doing here? You seem like the prissy type who wouldn't have to work.

Yup, that's me -- Charlotte. I could go on and on about the similarities between our sex lives, but let's not go there.

Anyway, Sex and The City 2 is now out on DVD and I watched it last night. It's not brilliant, but it's certainly better than Sex and The City: The Movie. The first movie didn't make sense half the time. It was a fashion show featuring fur and we are not talking faux. I have no idea how many little animals died to make that movie.

Sex and The City 2 still has all the gorgeous clothes, minus the fur, but it has more of a plot. It was even amusing on occasion.

Samantha Jones: [to Charlotte] Everyone knows you don't hire a hot nanny, it's the law! 
Carrie Bradshaw: Yeah, Jude Law. 


I was pleasantly surprised when Liza Minelli turned out to be the officiant and entertainment at Stanford and Anthony's wedding and it wasn't stupid and annoying. But why is Charlotte wearing a vintage Valentino skirt while making cupcakes in the kitchen with her little girls? And why is she so exhausted and miserable when she has a full-time nanny? Why does Samantha behave so badly in the United Arab Emirates? I know it's Samantha, but Samantha is intelligent enough to know better than to flaunt her body in that part of the world. And why does Carrie . . . Oh, that's enough. I'll let you watch it for yourself.

I must say, however, that they never should have let Jason Lewis (Smith Jared) go. He's barely in the second movie, and he's such marvelous eye candy. I really enjoyed his relationship with Samantha during the last season or so of the TV show, but the TV show was a different, funnier Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda world. I miss those women.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I HEARD A FLY CRY WHEN I DIED

Gentle Readers,

I don't know how anyone can have as many mosquito bites during November as I have. It's not as if I live in the jungle. Where are these biting bastards coming from?

I see them floating lazily around my house, waiting to feed on my deliciousness when the mood strikes, they whine in my ear when I go to bed, and ZAP, I wake up every morning with more bites -- deliver me Jesus!

I suppose these mosquitoes are the children and grandchildren (I don't know much about the life cycle of the mosquito and I'm in no mood to google it) of the mosquitoes that got in the house and lived off me over the summer. They laid their eggs or do whatever it is that mosquitoes do and remained in the comfort of my cozy house and so it doesn't matter to them that it's turned cold outside. And they certainly don't care that I don't leave uncovered food sitting around because I am the uncovered food that's sitting around. They love me. They simply love me. And I can't use repellent. It's repellent to my delicate skin.

Perhaps a coating of plastic wrap at bedtime would protect me. Must remember to leave nose and mouth free.

Infinities of love to everyone except mosquitoes,

Lola

Friday, November 19, 2010

MAGGIE GYLLENHAAL X 3

Gentle Readers,

I love Maggie Gyllenhaal. Although she's good in everything in which I've seen her, I'd like to tell you my three favorite Maggie Gyllenhaal movies because maybe you'll want to see one this weekend or over your Thanksgiving break if you're too intelligent to go shopping.

1. Secretary - Who knew sadomasochism could be so damn funny? Gyllenhaal, as Lee, is slyly hilarious in her relationship with her lawyer boss, played by James Spader. These two are perfect together. And what a happy ending. I can't tell you about the last shot -- it wouldn't be fair -- but I love it. I just love it.

Dr. Twardon: Who's to say that love needs to be soft and gentle? 

2. SherryBaby - Wow! Gyllenhaal is so natural in her role as Sherry, the addict and thief recently released from prison who longs to get her daughter back. She is so freaking talented and she plays the role with such freedom.

Sherry Swanson: I want my baby back, Dean. I WANT Alexis! 
Dean Walker: You know, if you stop talking so much about what you want... stop being so selfish... maybe what you want will come to you on its own. 
Sherry Swanson: I'm just mad, cause I suck. 

3. Away We Go - Gyllenhaal is not the star of this movie (John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph star), but she's in the most hilarious part as the professor, LN, who believes that strollers are bad.

LN: [to Roderick] They bought us a stroller. 
Burt Farlander: What's wrong with a stroller? 
LN: I LOVE my babies. Why would I want to PUSH them away from me? 


But what's my favorite Maggie Gyllenhaal movie?

I honestly don't know. How can I decide between the three that I featured? Every single one is an amazing Gyllenhaal feat. And I didn't even get into Stranger Than Fiction. Ach! I love that one too.

Of course, Gyllenhaal has also been in some little films like The Dark Knight and she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Crazy Heart. Those are some pretty good puppies.

So go on. I dare you. Get into some Maggie Gyllenhaal and do it soon.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

QUIRKY CHARMING MOVIES

Gentle Readers,

I present two quirky, charming movies for your viewing pleasure.

First -- In Paper Heart, part scripted and part documentary, Charlyne Yi explores the nature of love while acting out a relationship with her then-sweetheart Michael Cera, so we have courtship within a relationship and a movie within a documentary, or perhaps a documentary within a movie. Yi co-wrote and co-produced. Along the way, Yi interviews the likes of Seth Rogen on the subject of love, and when she says she doesn't think she's capable of loving someone, he assures her that her love glass is half full.

Charlyne Yi is one of those people who just can't help being amusing and interesting. I first noticed her when she played the stoned girlfriend in Knocked Up, which I think is absolutely hilarious. Michael Cera, of course, was great as George Michael Bluth in the under-watched TV series Arrested Development and was then equally great in Juno.

So Charlyne Yi + Michael Cera =  2(Quirky + Charming)

Second -- In The Answer Man, Jeff Daniels plays Arlen Faber who wrote a book called Me and God 20 years ago and became a spiritual iconic figure. So, naturally he goes into hiding to avoid the people who want to worship him and question him because they believe he can talk to God, and he turns into a really crotchety reclusive turd. But then he meets beautiful single mother Elizabeth, played by Lauren Graham, and change is set in motion.

I enjoy when this movie makes fun of New Agieness. For example, Arlen Faber has a back spasm, which he in a really New Age fashion chooses not to accept. Ha! He ends up on the floor unable to move and has to crawl to the chiropractor. I've made the point before that I'm sick of people blaming people who get sick for being sick, and apparently somebody agrees with me.

Jeff Daniels is good at playing the pompous ass, which he proved in The Squid and The Whale, and Lauren Graham is so wonderful that in my heart I still believe I am Lorelai Gilmore. The thing about Arlen Faber, though, is that you can see why Elizabeth would fall for him. He can be quite endearing and he's really nice to her little boy, Alex.

Alex: My mom says that meat is poisonous and can kill you. 
Arlen Faber: And I say, if that's not the best hamburger you've ever had, I'll change my name to Denise and run into the sea. 

Thus, Jeff Daniels + Lauren Graham = 2(Quirky + Charming + I Love Everything Lauren Graham Does)

Lauren Graham is now on the TV series Parenthood, but I still think of her as Lorelai. What's her character's name on Parenthood? I don't know. As far as I'm concerned it's Lorelai. And the daughter she has on Parenthood? Favorite Young Woman and I call her Bizarro Rory.

And so, Gentle Readers, two more movies that have the Lola Seal of Approval.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

MY TOOTH FAIRY

Gentle Readers,

Our dear friend LegalMist is suffering. Tooth problems. No tooth fairy.

Her lack of a tooth fairy reminded me of a very happy time during my marriage.

I had to have two of my wisdom teeth extracted. My husband took time off from work and drove me to the oral surgeon's office and waited there until the teeth were gone and I was awake. He didn't drop me off at the door and go to do something else until a nurse called and said he had to collect me. No, he stayed there. I came to sobbing, for no reason. It just happens sometimes. My husband was so kind and gentle. The nurse told him to take me home and give me a milk shake and then 7-Up, and he did. He was so kind and gentle. This was a very long time ago, when Favorite Young Man was a cute little redhead in preschool and not a good-looking dude, 6'4", lots of tats. So my husband went to pick up our little boy, whom we loved so much, from preschool. Then he came home and he stayed home and took care of me and our little boy all day. The entire day. He rented Gone With The Wind for me and I watched it on the VCR, a relatively new contraption. He fixed more milk shakes and gave me my pain meds when I needed them. When the pain started to get to me after Gone With The Wind he helped me to bed. He didn't leave me the entire day.

But the sweetest part of the whole day was when I got into bed and the tooth fairy had left money under my pillow. I think it was 10 or 20 dollars - enough to actually buy something. It was such a kind and thoughtful thing to do, and I remember giggling with delight.

The future actually seemed bright then. Once upon a time.

Happy Thanksgiving to the only husband I will ever have. Thank you for taking care of me when I had my wisdom teeth out.

Infinities of love to you,

Lola

Monday, November 15, 2010

24/7

Gentle Readers,

Are we all in agreement that no one should have to work 24 hours per day, 7 days per week?

Yes. Good, good.

How about 20 hours per day? Still too much? Yes.

We have labor laws for a reason. Human beings cannot and should not work nonstop. Child labor is against the law, and we should have a 40 hour work week, although some people take on more.

But the people who take on the most are parents. If no one should work 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, then how come we expect the parent who takes on the childcare, usually the mom, to work those hours? Yes, at times the children are asleep, but it's not as if Mom can stroll out of the house to take a break and have her hair done. No, no, no. She's on call. The parent has to be there when the kids are asleep or taking a bath or playing in the front yard with their friends because otherwise you have shit happening like Mom takes a walk around the block to get a little fresh air but the house catches on fire during the ten minutes she's gone and the children all die in the fire.

No, the parent has to be there all the time. So when does the primary caregiver get a break? Usually, never, unless she is in the lovely situation of having nice grandparents who long to babysit or she can afford good babysitters on a regular basis. I barely went any place for about ten years and if I expressed a longing to get out of the house was severely criticized. I didn't get a complete night's sleep for years and I always felt lousy, and I think I might have been a better mom if I had had some time off and didn't have a heap of guilt piled on me all the time.

The two women who put the most pressure on me to stay at home at all times were my mother and my mother-in-law. Both talked about how they handled all childcare duties themselves. They never asked their husbands to do anything. And both talked about how miserable they were. I guess they enjoyed passing on the unhappiness.

I know a young couple who appear to be doing things in a better way. Mom is the primary caregiver, but she works from home while the little one is in preschool or napping, so she hasn't completely lost her career. Dad comes home from work and doesn't expect to sit in front of the TV and drink beer until he passes out. He jumps back into his role as secondary caregiver as soon as he arrives and he takes responsibility for the little one's bath. Thus, he has a bond with his child that many dads don't have.

Way to go, you two. Keep it up. I am really impressed by your parenting skills, and I think you know who you are.

As for those of you who think Mom duty should be never ending: Wake up.

Infinities of love with Post # 197,

Lola

Sunday, November 14, 2010

SQUIRRELLY

Gentle Readers,

My friend Kathy sent me this and it actually made me laugh, which has not been easy of late:

Walking can add minutes to your life. THis enables you at 85 years of age to live an additional 5 months in a nursing home at $7000 a month.

My Dad started walking at the age of 60.  He is 97 years old now and we don't know where he is.


Kathy and I have had unwanted creatures in our houses within the last few days, and no, I'm not talking about the women's retreat Kathy just hosted. I'm not telling what my creature was because it's too horrifying for me to write about it, but Kathy had a squirrel.


She has three cats and they like to bring things inside with them, usually mice. Kathy's cats play with the mice until they die of little mousy heart attacks. Then she uses pliers to pick the mouse up by the tail and tosses it on her neighbor's property. The neighbor did not know until this very moment who was giving him the gift of dead mice. No doubt he will be pleased to know that he can thank Kathy.


But a few days ago Kathy's cats brought a squirrel in the house and got fur all over the place. Kathy is an excellent seamstress and next time I see her undoubtedly she will have a squirrel trimmed outfit.  Unfortunately though, Kathy could not find the squirrel in order to toss it out. Dead squirrel in the house and nobody can find it to fix a tasty meal.


She informed me by email last night, however, that she found the squirrel "sleeping" wherever the cats had left it. She put it in a box, and overnight the cats got into the box and played with the squirrel, who was no longer as interesting since he didn't move. Kathy has assured me that the squirrel is back in his box and now buried, probably in her neighbor's yard. 


My sister has a doggie door and she awoke one night to discover that one of her dogs had put a dead squirrel in bed with her.


I'll bet that was a scream.


Infinities of love,


Lola, who will soon reach her 200th post

Thursday, November 11, 2010

AGING GRACEFULLY


Gentle Readers,

My friend Carol sent me this video. It's hilarious, and I hope no one got hurt when antics ensued. I kept thinking that Carol, Kathy, and I will be in videos like this before we know it because we're getting older and we're all nuts.

Infinities of love,

Lola

video

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I FEEL LIKE BITCHING

Why do I feel like bitching Gentle Readers? Because. That's why. Same explanation I used to give my kids when they wanted to do something stupid, except the answer was "because I said so." Sometimes parents don't have to give explanations, so damn it, I'm going to bitch.

1. My property taxes are going way up. I was supposed to apply for something so my property taxes would stay the same or go down, but I didn't know about it. Somebody was supposed to tell me at closing, but I closed by mail and nobody told me. I missed the deadline to apply so now I'm being punished for my ignorance. My fricking house payment will go way up.

2. I accidentally broke my printer today. It hasn't been working, apparently because of a defective cartridge. It appears to be printing but then no words are on the page the printer spits out. I went to take the cartridge out and the little piece that holds it in place fricking snapped off. And it doesn't snap back in. Son of a bitch. I'm a writer. I cannot be without a printer and I can't afford a new one.

3. Why do people who smoke have enough money for cigarettes but then they can't make their house payments, buy food, get braces for their kids, do all the important stuff? What in the hell is the matter with you people? Do you ever stop to add up how much your nicotine addiction costs you every year and what you could afford if you gave up the cancer sticks? People go to AA and other programs to stop drinking and drugging. Nicotine is a DRUG. There are free programs to help you stop smoking. Go get the fricking help you need and cut it out.

4. Why do people who smoke get extra breaks at work? Every single place I have ever worked, those of us who didn't smoke picked up the slack because of the people who did. At one newspaper where I worked the editors and one of the reporters went out to smoke EVERY 20 minutes. When I worked in healthcare some of the nurses and assistants were always out smoking. Once per hour. At one nursing home everybody in the place (not residents; they were tucked safely in bed) except one other person and me went out to smoke and they were gone for TWO FRICKING HOURS. Put that in your cigarette and smoke it.

5. How come some people break the rules over and over and get away with it? Why? Why? Why? And those of us who work hard and try hard end up shit upon. I'm tired of it. I'm tired of a particular business that can't keep track of my insurance paperwork and checks, and I don't have the option of going elsewhere. Quit feeling sorry for the person who lied and cheated on me and do what you're supposed to do with my checks, you sorry, lazy bitch. No one is minding the store, so people get away with murder. I once took care of a woman who was virtually incapable of speaking and she sat in her own diarrhea all day. When I cleaned her up I found a red spot on each butt cheek. Over the months as I treated her bottom I watched it go from bad to worse until she had really nasty bed sores because I was the only one who changed her and cleaned her and took care of her and at last she died and left the misery of the place she was in.

6. More than once now I've had potential employers call and leave a message saying they want to interview me, and when I call back the position miraculously has been filled or it's about to be filled so in the course of just a few hours they go from wanting to interview me to having someone else. I called a potential employer yesterday and left a message asking what email address I should use to send my resume. No call back, so I planned on calling again this morning. But before I could do so the secretary left a message on my phone saying two interview times were open -- 10:30 and 11:30. At 10:00 I got the message and called her back. No fricking answer. At 10:30 she called me back and asked, Do we have your resume? NO YOU DON'T HAVE MY RESUME BITCH BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE THE EMAIL ADDRESS TO SEND IT TO YOU. But of course I didn't say that. Anyway, after that she said, Well, she's interviewed several people and she's ready to make a decision and even if you came out here now we're having a big meeting and I'd have to get her out of that to interview you so I don't think there's really any point. Then why in the hell did you call me you moron?

7. People who steal my ideas need to cut it out. I'm sick of hearing my ideas attributed to someone else.

This day has sucked. There's nothing new under the sun, thank you very much Ecclesiastes.

Fuck you. Fuck all of you.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

BUT WHAT'S A PRINCESS TO DO?

Gentle Readers,

After I told you yesterday not to bother with the movie The Queen's Sister, I got to thinking about Princess Margaret. By the time she died, she wasn't exactly popular in Great Britain. In fact, quite a few people complained about supporting her lavish lifestyle when she didn't do much of anything, other than sell tabloids by creating scandals.

But, really, what's a princess to do? She was raised as Her Royal Highness Princess Margaret Rose, but I imagine that when her father assumed the throne, she began to learn that she was always going to be in second place behind her older sister, Elizabeth. And then Elizabeth had children and Princess Margaret wasn't even in second place any more. She really didn't have a place of importance in the royal hierarchy.

Yes, she was on the Civil List, meaning she got paid by her country to be a princess and attend the openings of hospital wings and such, probably when they couldn't get somebody more interesting. And she had a lovely island getaway and people did things for her because she was royalty, but she had to endure increasing scrutiny and criticism over the years.

I feel a bit sorry for Princess Margaret. When she was a young woman -- and quite the captivating beauty -- she fell in love with a married man, Peter Townsend. And he fell in love with her and decided or had already decided to get a divorce. But her family told Margaret that if she married this divorced man, she couldn't get married in The Church of England, of which her sister is the head, she would lose her place in the line of succession, and she would be cut off and lose everything. She may have even feared she would no longer be received by her own family -- the fate of her Uncle David, who gave up the crown to marry Wallis Simpson.

So she gave in. She made a radio address to the nation stating that she would do her duty and not marry Townsend. Margaret gave up the man she loved for her country and then became increasingly reviled when her life didn't work out so great.

She married and divorced after having two children. Her husband fooled around on her a lot, and she fooled around too, and it was just all downhill from there. Her husband, a commoner named Antony Armstrong-Jones, who became Lord Snowdon when he married Margaret, remarried right after the divorce.

Margaret was alone. She took lovers and was a patroness of the fine arts in Great Britain, something that didn't really interest her sister. Reportedly, she sang well and played the piano and could have been a marvelous actress -- but royalty doesn't go on the stage or play parts in movies.

It's probably very difficult for someone who has been raised royally to achieve true intimacy.

So, Great Britain, after Princess Margaret did as she was supposed to do and gave up her true love, why did you turn on her? I know some of you read me. It's in my stats. So please feel free to speak up about the lost princess.

Explanation wanted, please.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Monday, November 8, 2010

THE MAN WHO GOT STUCK BEING KING AND HIS SECOND DAUGHTER

Gentle Readers,

I'm in quite the British mood today because I watched two British films over the weekend. You really needn't bother with either of them unless, in the first case, you're in the mood for a romantic trifle.

It's a Masterpiece Theater show called Bertie and Elizabeth . Just in case you're not up on your British history, Bertie's older brother David, who was Edward VIII, abdicated the throne so he could marry the kind of creepy-looking American Wallis Simpson. This dumping of royal duty left the Duke of York, Albert, to become King George VI, with his beloved Elizabeth by his side as Queen Consort.  

Bertie was not as outgoing as his older brother and had a terrible stutter. But he managed quite nicely as King and he and Elizabeth became especially popular because of their kind and compassionate leadership during World War II. Buckingham Palace was even bombed, but the Royals stayed in London, although they sent their two little girls to Windsor.

This movie was not historically accurate, at least in regards to Bertie and Elizabeth's romance. It does not accurately portray how they met or how long it took Bertie to convince Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon to marry him. I know this because my current bedtime reading material is The Official Biography of The Queen Mother, which I find to be quite interesting. I'm finally getting my Royals straight. I can tell you the correct order starting with Queen Victoria, which isn't a lot to brag about, but at least I'm getting some things figured out that long puzzled me.

When I was young and there wasn't an Internet I wanted to know why The Queen Mother was called The Queen Mother and what was her real name? It took me years to find out that she was Elizabeth, but she wasn't Elizabeth II because she was not queen in her own right, as her daughter was upon the death of her father, George VI. By the way, George (Bertie) died from lung cancer. His wife blamed his relatively early demise on the extra stress placed on him when he had to jump in and become king -- never mind that the man smoked like a chimney. She outlived him by 50 some years.

Anyway, if you read the book, which I highly recommend, you might want to watch this Masterpiece Theater to see how Bertie and Elizabeth are portrayed.

Being in a royal mood, I then watched a BBC production called The Queen's Sister. It was pretty trashy. Don't waste your time on it unless you want a bit of boobs and sex and drinking and drugs.

The British people always like it when their rulers produce an heir and a spare. Now, King William is the heir and Prince Harry is the spare. But once upon a time, Queen Elizabeth (the current queen) was the heir and her younger sister, Princess Margaret Rose, was the spare. But Elizabeth married and started having children and Margaret kept moving farther down in the line of succession. Margaret seems to have been restless and uncomfortable with her station in life, sometimes demanding she be treated as royalty and then behaving in a very relaxed and carefree manner.

Margaret died in 2002, not long before the death of her mother, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, who lived to be 101. Margaret, like her father, smoked incessantly, and apparently unlike her father, was big time into alcohol and drugs. She had lung problems and a series of strokes before she died.

One thing I'd like to point out, though, for those of you who think the paparazzi suddenly became a problem when Lady Diana entered the public realm, Princess Margaret was stalked by photographers and photos of her at her private island retreat made the papers, leading to public scandal. Even Lady Elizabeth, before she wed Bertie, had photographers hanging around outside her door. She made the mistake of granting an interview to a reporter. She didn't make the same mistake twice. Royals didn't chat with reporters.

So like I said, don't bother with this movie unless you want to see a pretty funny piece that's included on the disc about a long-ago lousy husband king who was extremely nasty to his wife, and I admit I can't think of their names because they are pre-Victoria. Hmmmm Can I figure it out?

Ha ha! It was George and Caroline of Brunswick (thank you amazon). I actually laughed out loud at this bonus feature.

I'm sorry I couldn't say such and such is marvelous; you absolutely must see it. But if I see something I don't like, I figure it's best to warn you, Gentle Readers.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Saturday, November 6, 2010

MOVIE NIGHT!

Gentle Readers,

It has turned chilly here in the hinterlands. A Nordic frost has descended on us Norwegian Lutherans. The grumpy-assed German Lutherans are frosty all year round.

Well, what better way to spend a Saturday evening without spending much money or needing a babysitter than to pop a DVD in? I know I certainly can't afford to go to a movie theater. Besides, it's too far away and Netflix and Amazon bring movies to me right here at home. I open the door and there they are in the mail box. I love the modern world and all its amenities. I mean, really, if you're anywhere near my age, which is fhrmhrmone, it never occurred to us when we were children that someday people would have VCRs. We didn't even have color TV. Getting a color TV seemed like a miracle.

Enough nostalgia: On to the movies.

Today I present hilarity or tragedy -- whatever you're in the mood for.

This movie comes with the highest Lola Comedy Seal of Approval: Get Him To The Greek. Thought I'd die laughing. This movie isn't just funny. It's Christopher Guest funny. Yes, I laughed that hard. Jonah Hill is always funny; I'd never heard of Russell Brand before and he was wonderful as rocker Aldous Snow;and Sean Puff Daddy P Diddy Combs was a revelation in funny as Sergio Roma, the head of a record label.

Sergio Roma: I've got six fuckin' kids! Do you know how many Air Jordans six black kids wear? 


Now we move to something a bit more weepy: Things We Lost In The Fire. Yes, it's sad, but it's so beautifully sad. How can a movie not be beautiful when it stars Halle Berry and Benicio Del Toro? Even when Del Toro is smack-ravaged, he's gorgeous. 


I may have mentioned this once or twice or a dozen times before, but the Beautiful Benicio went to the same high school as Favorite Young Woman - not at the same time. He's much older than she is. But when I was a reporter I called the school and asked them to arrange a telephone interview with Benicio because Traffic, an all-time great movie , had just come out so I interviewed Benicio and soon after he won an Academy Award. 


Coincidence? I think not. 


I gave him The Lola Bump over the telephone. Tee hee.


If you can get Greek I'd watch it tonight. 


Aaron Green: [as Sergio is chasing after them in a hotel lobby] This is the longest hallway of all time!
Aldous Snow: It's Kubrickian! 



But watch Fire soon. It's worth it.


Set your clocks back one hour! Extra hour of sleep tonight! Whoo hoo!


Infinities of Love,


Lola

Thursday, November 4, 2010

A THREE DOG LIFE

Gentle Readers,

I present for your gentle perusal A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas.

Perhaps I found this memoir particularly memorable because Thomas has her three dog life without a husband as I have mine.

Thomas's husband suffered severe brain damage when he was hit by a car while out walking one of their dogs. As a matter of fact, the dog had gotten off its lead and her husband, Rich, was chasing the dog, who had run into the street. The dog was not injured. Rich was.

Rich eventually had to go to a nursing home to live, leaving Thomas to live and write with her three dogs for company. These vignettes -- appropriate that a memoir would be vignettes because isn't that how our memories come to us? -- are funny and sad and sweet and sad, but ultimately help the reader go on with the tumult of life.

Rich, at the time this book was written, was able to come home once a week for the afternoon.

My husband will never come home again.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

FRANKLIN'S FOOT FETISH

Gentle Readers,

When Franklin first approached me without fear but with love, it was to lick my toes.

He has continued to lick my toes from time to time, but also gives kisses where they really belong, and no, I do not mean my butt.

Franklin's love of my feet now extends to my slippers. After he had been with me a couple of nights, I slid out of my comfy bed in the morning ready to slide my feet into my slippers and found only one. A quick search uncovered the missing slipper on a doggie bed, hidden behind the curtains.

The slipper was not chewed. It was merely wet and had obviously received a good licking.

I resolved to put my slippers away at night from then on. Franklin had taught me a lesson about picking up after myself.

Good dog, Franklin.

But then last night I got out my nightie and slippers and put the nightie on the bed and the slippers on the floor and went in the bathroom for a little flossing, brushing, and washing.

I came out and both slippers were gone. Again, both slippers were on a doggie bed and had received their licking and kept on ticking.

Apparently, Franklin likes the way my feet taste and smell. Perhaps he also likes the way they look but has not yet found the words to tell me how he feels.

What a lovely compliment. Not many men go for my feet, especially in such a gentle manner.

Thank you, Franklin.

Infinities of love,

Lola

Monday, November 1, 2010

DON'T BAIT AND SWITCH ME

Gentle Readers,

I first became acquainted with Barbara Ehrenreich a few years ago when I read Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America. Ehrenreich spent an entire year as a member of the working poor. She cleaned houses and took on every other lousy job that doesn't pay decently and doesn't have benefits. She even worked at Oh My God I hate to say it Wal-Mart. And she lived on what she earned -- just barely.

It was an excellent way to demonstrate how horribly our hardest workers are treated and how certain people like The Walton Family of Arkansas makes a living off these people's backs.

I thought, This lady espouses my so-called bleeding-heart liberal causes, meaning she feels compassion for people and is passionate about it. She doesn't just talk the talk; she walks the walk.

Now I present to you the opportunity for an excellent reading experience: Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream. In this book Ehrenreich poses as a job seeker and tries hiring the people who charge a small fortune to help the desperate obtain a job; for example, there are "job coaches" and people who write resumes and people who tell you what you should wear if you want to get a job.

One of the most important and seemingly worthless things is networking. You must network to get a job. I can tell you from experience that I have networked the hell out of networking and it hasn't done a thing for my business. The only time people wanted contact with me was back when I was a reporter and could provide them with publicity. They lost interest in me right after I left the newspaper.

It's also very baaaad to be old and as with people who lose the cancer battle, it's really your own fault if you don't get a job. It's your bad attitude. You don't believe in yourself. Shame, shame, shame on you.

Something I also found very interesting is that those personality tests, the ones that tell you you're an INTJ and crap like that, Ehrenreich says lots of employers and job coaches use them and lots of studies show they're worthless. Some people test as different personality types depending on what time of day it is.

This book is a great piece of investigative journalism and it comes with the Lola Seal of Approval.

Barbara Ehrenreich, you are way cool. You go girl, and keep going. We need you.

Pssssst! Barbara, next, how about a nice expose on the Walton family of Wal-Mart fame and fortune? I don't think they can ever receive too much attention.

Infinities of love,

Lola