Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I've been watching the Showtime series Weeds on Netflix. At one point in the show, the bad guys managed to dig a tunnel between Mexico and the U.S. to bring over drugs, but when they started bringing over young girls, it got to be too much for Nancy, who ratted them out, though she has increasingly become a bad guy, too.

The tunnel on the show reminded me of the tunnels under my elementary school, which I presume were not used for drug trafficking. When we had a tornado drill, or an actual tornado warning, large panels were removed from the floor and we had to jump down into the tunnels. No steps led down to them.

The tunnels were concrete all around. There was no place to sit down. So we'd all be packed in down there, and before long a teacher would scream, BE QUIET! IF WE REALLY HAD A TORNADO WE WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO HEAR THE RADIO.

Silence would reign for about five seconds and then the murmuring would begin again and the murmuring would quickly become a roar.

After a while the drill would be over or the all clear siren would blow, and it would be time to get out of the tunnel. I really hated that part. Two adults would be standing on each side of the opening and they would each grab one of our hands and they'd haul us out. It was creepy and uncomfortable. I always felt scared when we went in the tunnel. I wasn't afraid of a tornado. I was scared of getting back out. Would those people be able to grab my hands? What if they dropped me? What if it was my turn and they just ignored me? What if somebody pushed me out of the way and I fell and everybody stepped on me on their way out of the tunnel and I got left behind?

I'm surprised I'm not living in a tunnel under an old elementary school in Kansas today.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Tuesday, February 26, 2013


What's it like to live in a nursing home? What might the future hold for you?

If you earn plenty of money and have a great retirement plan, in spite of the bad economy, if you end up unable to live on your own, you might live in one of those fancy assisted living places that has constant activities and great food and a real restaurant. We have at least one of those places here in Jacksonville. I visited there with a friend. The public can go to the restaurant, and they do. It's that good.

My friend Carol is a retired RN. She was at some sort of nurses get together and she won a free lunch at that facility's restaurant. Our first course was cold strawberry soup. It was delicious. The whole place was beautiful.

It also costs thousands of dollars a month to live there, and they don't accept MediCare.

So, let's get real. Let's say you are a person of modest means. You've done your best, but when all is said and done, you aren't a gazillionaire. After you sell your house and turn over all the money to the nursing home, you end up in a place like the facility where I worked. It wasn't the worst place in the world, but it sure as hell wasn't anything fancy.

I'll try to give you some idea of what you can expect.

First, you are going to give up all your independence. You're there for a reason. You aren't well enough or strong enough to live alone, and for one reason or another, you can't live with family. If you can walk when you get there, you probably won't be walking for long because there isn't any place to go. You are going to sit from dawn to dusk and lie in bed from dusk to dawn. If you can see and hear the TV and you have one, you can watch it -- if it doesn't piss off your roommate. One of the big reasons people go into nursing homes is that they've fallen at home and were on the floor for God only knows how long.

One lady told me she fell at home and was wearing one of those buttons to push for emergency help. She couldn't remember how to push the button so she was on the floor till somebody came to check on her. You may think that pushing a button is the easiest thing in the world to do and how could someone forget something like that, but well -- you'll be amazed at all the things you'll forget, you crazy old coot.

As your muscles atrophy and the staff tells you not to get up on your own because it's too dangerous, you'll wish you could just get up and go to the bathroom. But you've been warned against walking without assistance, so you turn on your call light and you wait and wait and wait. If someone takes you to the bathroom before you pee your pants, you'll either sit on the toilet for a long time while you wait for someone to come back to get you, or the person will stay in the bathroom with you. There is no privacy in a nursing home. And if you aren't taken to the bathroom before you pee, you'll be in diapers before you know it.

Second, the quality of care from the staff will vary. Your nurse could be Stacy, who has a master's degree. She works quietly and quickly. She never loses her temper with anyone. Stacy is a perfectionist who suffers along with her patients. After working from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., she goes home and cries all day because she's so afraid she might have done something wrong. After five years, she gets out of nursing and trains for a different career while she's still young enough to make a change.

Your nurse could be Eve, who wouldn't get up off her butt to save her own life.

Your nurse could be Trish, who isn't all there. Some people think she has mental problems and is on some sort of medication. She wanders around, stuttering, and she smokes in the shower room or the day room and she actually thinks no one knows she is endangering everyone's lives (piped-in oxygen).

But you will have more contact with the nursing assistants, who will probably wipe your butt for you because you can't see well enough to get yourself clean. You might get Janie, who is slow and inexperienced and not very strong, but does a thorough job and has a lot of compassion and can recite poetry while she cleans your ass.

If you're really fortunate, you'll get Robin. She is quick and strong and has years of experience and she's filled with good humor.

Or your nursing assistant might be CeeCee. You turn on your call light and ask for the bed pan. She shouts at you that she's busy so just pee in the diaper because that's what it's there for.

Third, expect the food to suck. Monday's supper is soup, Tuesday's supper is soup, Wednesday's supper is soup . . . blah blah blah. Occasionally, you might get a Sunday dinner of roast beef. If you have difficulty swallowing, you'll eat the same food as everyone else, but anything that's solid will be pureed. Anything that's liquid will have a cornstarch mixture added to it to thicken it. No more sodas out of the vending machine for you. Drinks are brought around -- for those who are allowed to have them -- at 3 p.m. The drinks are watered down Kool-Aid. Snacks are passed out almost immediately after supper. There's cheap ice cream, juice, pudding, and half sandwiches.

Fourth, you are going to live with someone you've never seen before in your life. You didn't think you would have a private room, did you? No, no, no. You have a roommate. Your roommate could be a lump of humanity who is in a vegetative state. That's not such a bad deal. You can do pretty much whatever you want and she can't complain. The odor from the poop of someone who is fed through a tube is pretty bad, but the whole nursing home stinks, so what's the big deal? You could have a roommate whose TV blares 24/7. Then you can endure in silent misery, or say something and the two of you will fight like cats and dogs. Some roommates had serious battles, with one who was mobile actually getting up and slapping one who couldn't walk and calling her "that old bitch" -- like the slapper was such a joy to have around.

However, we had a resident who was afraid of everything. She cried buckets of tears. One morning the fire alarm went off. It was a false alarm, but while it was going off, all the doors had to be closed. The crying lady sobbed the entire time, and I couldn't go in her room to comfort her. Her roommate held her and rubbed her back until, at last, the fire alarm stopped, and the world started to turn again.

* * *

Have I frightened you today? Although there are bright spots, it's a pretty depressing picture, isn't it?

If you don't have oodles of money and you have to go to a nursing home, I recommend that you look for one that has a cadre of volunteers. Volunteers can make a world of difference in a facility. They'll decorate for holidays and visit with residents and sometimes organize activities. They'll also see what goes on and complain about abuse.

It's also helpful if the nursing home has a garden with walkways, or at least a place to get outside for a bit. Then a family member or a volunteer can take you out for a walk. Vivian asked if I would take her outside. I ate my lunch as quickly as I could and used the rest of my break to take her out in her wheelchair. As the doors opened and the breeze blew against her face, she said, That feels so good. I've been here for five years and this is only the second time I've been outside.

All I could do was push her chair up and down on the sidewalk in front of the nursing home, but it made her happy.  

As for me, I will never enter a nursing home -- as a patient. If I can't live on my own, my children have strict instructions to kill me or to help me kill myself.

P.S. Elvis Aaron Schwarz once worked in maintenance in a nursing home. He told me he couldn't bear it. He said they dragged the poor people out of bed every morning and sat them in rows in their wheel chairs and there they sat all day long. He would say to the nurse, This guy over here has wet his pants. He needs help.

After a while he got a warning to mind his own business and not bother the nursing staff.

He quit because he couldn't take it.

Now, let's try to end on a happier note with a photo of Elvis Aaron Schwarz.

Hi! Remember me?
I'm Elvis Aaron Schwarz.
I try to stand up for the weary and the downtrodden.

Monday, February 25, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

A mere glance at the cover of  How To Avoid Having Sex will tell you it's adorable.

And then you see it's by EC Stilson, and you know it's hilarious.

I was able to read this slim volume in a single sitting. When I finished and wiped away my tears of laughter, all I could think was, If Elisa (EC Stilson) and Cade (her husband) ever get divorced, it will be a great loss for the world.

That's because Elisa mines their relationship for such great laughs. The two of them can have more fun figuring out ways to avoid sex than most people have . . . I don't know -- having sex?

Since this book is small, you can keep it handy by the bed in case someone gets handsy when you're not in the mood. How To Avoid Having Sex is inexpensive and available at Amazon.

Buy it and chortle, chuckle, and yes, go ahead and guffaw.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Sunday, February 24, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I have no fear of death. I know where I'm going.

A doctor once told me, One more minute and you would have been dead!

All I could think was, Fuck! I didn't even see the tunnel and the light!

How come everybody else who comes so close to death gets to see the fricking tunnel and the light, but not me? Oh, no. Never me. I'm always left out.

But I can think of a couple of things about dying that piss me off.

First, I know I will have books on my shelves that I haven't read yet. That's because I have a horrible fear of facing an empty house at midnight without a new book to read. So I always have more books around than I can possibly read during, let's say a month or two months. Plenty of books. It pisses me off that when I go, those books will be sitting there unread.

Second, I have about two bazillion movies in my Netflix queue. And I'm always adding more. There's no way I will watch all the movies I want to see before I die. Just absolutely no way. That pisses me off, too.

I probably won't get to go to England before I die. I definitely won't get laid by Johnny Depp.


The part of entering the gates of Heaven that makes me the happiest is that my collie Faulkner will be there waiting for me, tail wagging. He won't be deaf and lame anymore. We'll play slobberball just like we used to.

It will be so cool.

When we're tired of playing, we'll have tea with Emily Dickinson and Sylvia Plath and talk about poetry and then we'll play more slobberball and we'll invite them to play, too.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Yesterday I reviewed the movie The Perks Of Being A Wallflower. Then, some of you commented that you might watch the movie with teens.

I felt I hadn't described the movie sufficiently, so I added a comment. I didn't know if you would see it, so I'm repeating it here:

ALERT! I don't want to give you the wrong impression about this
 movie. I may have understated these kids' problems when I used the term "teen angst." Charlie and a number of other characters have some extremely serious stuff going on in their lives. Be prepared to discuss what the characters face and have gone through in the past. You might want to watch the movie alone before watching it with teens.

There! Now I feel better. If I'm going to review a movie, I think it's my duty to warn parents that it's okay for kids, or, more likely, not okay, or if you're going to watch it with kids, be prepared to talk about it.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Friday, February 22, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Today I present for your consideration The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012 and recently released on DVD).

Charlie (Logan Lerman) starts his freshman year in high school completely friendless. His best friend shot himself the previous spring. He goes to the cafeteria for lunch and wonders if he'll be able to sit with his sister, who's a senior. She shoots him down. He spots a boy who played football with his older brother, who has graduated. Will the football player say hi? Nope.

Then, magically, Charlie is befriended by Patrick (Ezra Miller) and Sam (Emma Watson, and no, she's not Hermione anymore). Suddenly, Charlie has a group of friends, but life is still hard -- for all of them.

I'm impressed by this film. It's intelligent and well made. At first I was surprised that it seemed a little jumpy, but then I realized it reflected Charlie's mental state and memory lapses. The acting is excellent.

I looked at some reviews of The Perks of Being A Wallflower and a number of people commented that it was one of the ten best films of the year and that it should have received an Academy Award nomination for best picture. I can't speak to that because I've seen only two of the nominated films.

The Perks of Being A Wallflower certainly has the corner on the teen angst market, which might mean more to me if I weren't so very, very far away from those years. Yet, I enthusiastically give this film The Janie Junebug Seal of Approval.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I just finished watching the last episode of this season of Downton Abbey. Gosh, it went by quickly. It seems as if the season just started last month.

Maybe that's because the season did start last month.

The Grim Reaper certainly made his presence known during season three.

I was Lady Sybil Crawley, the youngest and most liberal of the Crawley sisters.
I married the chauffeur and died after having his baby
so I could have a career in films.

I cried many tears over Sybil's death. 

And then in the last episode SPOILER ALERT

Matthew saw his new baby son and got smacked into by a truck while he was driving merrily home. The episode ended with Matthew bleeding on the side of the road and Mary sitting in her hospital bed, holding the heir to Downton Abbey.

I was Lady Mary Crawley.
Then I married my distant cousin Matthew and became Lady Mary Crawley.
I shall never allow my beaky-nosed sister Edith to forget that
I have given birth to a male heir.

In spite of these deaths, season three had its joys. I was happy when Mr. Bates got out of prison. He and Anna are such a happy couple. 

The Dowager Countess continued to stick her nose in everyone's business, but she proved herself quite wise. She helped arrange for Ethel, the former housemaid at Downton turned prostitute for the townsmen turned cook for Mrs. Crawley, to go to work for some people who live near her son's grandparents, who have little illegitimate Charlie. Ethel will be able to see her son without anyone knowing who she was or that she'd been a hooker.

Violet also asked Dr. Clarkson to research the cause of Sybil's death. He was able to report that even if they had taken Sybil to a hospital, her chance of survival was very small indeed. This news reunited Robert and Cora.

One aspect of this season that I found quite astonishing was that when Thomas put the moves on the footman, they didn't dismiss Thomas immediately. Instead, Robert said something like, It isn't as if we haven't known all along what he is.

Lord Granthan, keeper of the flame, let a gay man get him dressed? And then when Thomas got in trouble, not only was he not dismissed -- he was promoted to under-butler!

What is the world coming to?

I think Thomas is just too interesting a character to lose.

But now, sigh with me, Downton Abbey fans, for the season is over. We must wait another year for Mary to learn she is a widow. Or perhaps the show will jump forward in time so Mary won't have to dress in black for every episode.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Monday, February 18, 2013


Miss Winnie was a tiny, white-haired lady who sat hunched over in her wheelchair. She weighed so little that it was easy to lift her from her chair to her bed.

She was quite elderly, probably 90, and in very poor health. She sipped on a can of ginger ale throughout the day because of a stomach problem, and some sort of condition with her throat forced her to clear her throat frequently and made speaking difficult.

But Miss Winnie's mind was as sharp as a tack. Monday through Saturday, she croaked, "I want to go bed at 7:30 when Jeopardy! is over."

As she watched her favorite show, she stared at the television intently. I felt certain she knew many of the questions to Alex Trebek's answers.

Everyone loved Miss Winnie. She was sweet. She was loving. She never complained.

My concern that Miss Winnie's roommate, Virgie (short for Virginia), might feel overlooked, was for naught. I've never met a person more selfless than Virgie.

After I obtained my certification and started lifting people from wheelchair to toilet or to bed, many of the patients voiced their concerns. "You're not big enough to lift me," they'd say. "You're too skinny."

I already had my doubts about my strength. Their worries made me even more nervous.

But if Virgie felt any misgivings about my abilities, she never uttered a word. Instead, she praised me. "When Janie puts you to bed, you just fly right in," she said.

Virgie couldn't have known how much she increased my confidence.

Virgie seemed my little center of tranquility in the constantly chaotic world of the nursing home.

One especially bad evening, poop flew, patients complained, and nurses shouted. Virgie couldn't have known what was going on outside her room, but she told me as I washed her in bed, "If I was to get real sick, it's you I'd want nursing me, Janie."

I wanted to purr with delight. I thanked her and kissed her soft, withered cheek.

The thing was, though, Virgie, was "real sick." She had been sick as a child when she had polio, which left her without the use of her left leg. Making do with a cane, she had raised five children and worked in a grocery store for 30 years. Now she used a wheelchair, with her left leg propped up on a pillow. She had diabetes. Her watery blue eyes saw very little. Although she couldn't read the words, she still went to the hymn sings held in the dining room, humming along when she didn't know the songs.

Virgie loved the Lord with all her heart and soul. She also loved Miss Winnie.

"Miss Winnie, do you need a fresh can of ginger ale?" Virgie would ask. "Do you want to go to bingo? Do you need help with your call light? Do you want me to rub lotion into your hands?"

Whatever Miss Winnie might require, Virgie was determined Miss Winnie would have it. And Virgie never worried about herself, which she demonstrated powerfully one day when Richard wheeled his way into their room.

Richard was the bane of everyone's existence, but he couldn't help it. He had suffered a brain injury and didn't know what he was doing. He spent his days roaming the hallways, slamming his wheelchair into walls and doors, and sometimes entering other patients' rooms.

One night he went into grouchy Mabel's room. She screamed for help. After I removed Richard she yelled at me for "letting that man run loose."

"We can't lock him up or tie him down, Mabel," I explained. "It's against the law."

But sometimes I wished we could shut Richard in a padded room and let him smack into one wall after another. The man was dangerous. He ran into other patients during his treks through the halls. One night he took a cup of pudding from the snack cart and threw it at me -- hard.

Richard was probably about 50 years old, large, and still very, very strong.

All the patients knew who he was and feared him, so as soon as he careened through the door to Miss Winnie and Virgie's room, they turned on their call lights and started shouting.

But Richard moved fast, and he headed straight toward Miss Winnie. She stared at him in terror. With no thought for her own safety, Virgie moved her wheelchair into place. She blocked Richard's way with her paralyzed leg that was extended straight out on a support. Richard ran into Virgie, but their room was the closest one to the nurses' station and help arrived quickly.

Fortunately, Virgie wasn't injured.

When I arrived for work that night, Miss Winnie told me the story of Richard's attack.

"I just knew I had to protect Miss Winnie," was all Virgie had to say.

Miss Winnie also told her daughter-in-law about Richard. Within days, the door to Miss Winnie's and Virgie's room had been cut in half so the bottom could be closed while they were in the room. The staff could still see Miss Winnie and Virgie, but Richard, who didn't know how to turn a doorknob, couldn't get in.

* * *

I've always wondered how Virgie developed such a generous spirit. True, she behaved as a Christian should, but I've never met any other Christian as giving and unconcerned about herself as Virgie was.

When Miss Winnie died, Virgie took it hard. It was the only time I saw her cry. She consoled herself with the knowledge that Miss Winnie had gone to Heaven. 

Virgie's new roommate had terminal cancer. Every evening the unfamiliar woman's side of the room filled with family members and friends eager to cheer up the dying patient and keep her company. She seemed to be a pleasant lady, but she and her visitors never noticed Virgie.

Perhaps it was because when they arrived, Virgie wheeled herself into the hallway outside the room, where she sat until the last visitor had vanished. "Virgie, what are you doing out here?" I asked.

"I don't want to be in the way with all those people visiting," she answered.

Night after night, Virgie sat in the hallway, her head drooping with exhaustion. I could have told Virgie that it was her room, too, and she had a right to be there. I could have told her I would close the curtain around her bed and tuck her in for the night.

But I knew it was pointless.

I admit I was grateful when the new lady, who I never really got to know, passed away, and Virgie no longer spent her evenings sitting in the hall.

Friday, February 15, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I present for your consideration a docudrama entitled Oranges and Sunshine, starring Emily Watson (2010, available on DVD).

During the 1980s, a British social worker named Margaret Humphreys (Watson) was approached by a woman from Australia who said she had been born in England but deported to Australia as a child, along with many other children. The woman wanted to know what had happened to her mother.

Humphreys told the woman that her story couldn't possibly be true -- that such a thing would be illegal.

And yes, it was illegal, but it was true. And it didn't happen to a handful of children. During the 1940s and '50s, perhaps as many as 150,000 children were shipped from England to other countries of the Commonwealth where they were used as slave labor.

Thus, the movie follows Humphreys as she uncovers the nefarious scheme and works to reunite the now grown-up children with the parents who surrendered them for adoption or placed them in children's homes temporarily and lost them permanently (some children had been orphaned). The movie focuses on children who were sent to Australia -- thus, the title. One of the men states that when he was a child he was told he could go to Australia and pick oranges off the trees for his breakfast and the sun would shine every day, he would live in a white house, and ride a horse to school. Then he was told he was going no matter what because his mother was dead.

But, his mother wasn't dead. And he didn't get oranges and sunshine.

Obviously, this story is a very sad one, and it's dramatic enough in its own right. It doesn't need over-the-top acting. Fortunately, the performances are just right. Watson is the constantly calm presence that steers the movie.

I'm sorry to say that Oranges and Sunshine doesn't have a wildly happy ending, but how could it? The   movie certainly made me want to learn more about the deportation and about Margaret Humphreys. I found a wealth of information about her with a simple click on Google.

We do have the world at our fingertips these days, don't we?

Dee, I'm not sure how you would feel about this movie. It would probably speak to the abandonment you experienced, but I don't know if it would be cathartic or if it would add to your pain.

I wish that the reason for making this movie didn't exist, but because the film is well made, I give Oranges and Sunshine The Janie Junebug Seal of Approval. But unless you're really curious about people who were cruel to children and got away with it for many years until one woman stood up for the truth, maybe you should find a comedy to watch.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Thursday, February 14, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Happy Valentine's Day! You all are my Valentines, but that's not my secret.

Of course, I must admit that Elvis Aaron Schwarz is my extra special Valentine.

Hi! Remember me?
I'm Elvis Aaron Schwarz.
Happy Valentine's Day, Baby Doll.

Oh, that man is a sweetheart.

But I told you on Monday that this year I also have a secret Valentine and that I would announce my Valentine's identity today. So, here we go:

My Valentine is Juli from Surviving Boys

I am super proud of Juli because she has made the commitment to participate in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, which means that she will walk twenty miles each day for three days to raise funds for breast cancer research and detection. 

The Susan G. Komen Web site states:

Seventy-five percent of the net proceeds raised by the 3-Day help fund national research and large public health outreach programs. The remaining 25 percent helps fund local community and Affiliate support and outreach programs. Virtually every major advance in the fight against breast cancer in the last 30 years has been impacted by a Komen grant. For more information about Komen, breast health or breast cancer, visit or call 1-877 GO KOMEN.

After Juli walks her twenty miles each day, she won't check in to the Hilton to relax. She'll sleep in a tent. It's during the summer, so the weather will probably be hot; and the days will definitely be long. She's doing the walk with a friend, and they'll be with a large group of walkers. 

A big, big part of Juli's commitment is that she has to raise a minimum of $2,300 to be able to participate. My Valentine's Day gift to Juli is a $60 donation toward her goal. I gave $60 because she's going to walk 60 miles. 

I hope you'll help Juli, too. Just go to her blog at On the right side of the blog, you'll see a large pink button. At the top, it says "Click Here So I Can Walk."

Let's all wish Juli a Happy Valentine's Day with a donation. This cause is definitely a worthy one. I don't know many people whose lives haven't been touched in some way by breast cancer. 

I remember beautiful young Page, a member of our church when we lived in Maryland. Breast cancer took her life before she was even 30 years old. She left behind a husband, a two-year-old son, and a heartbroken church family.

So Juli, I made my donation because of Page, because this is a good cause, and because I love you. Happy Valentine's Day, Juli!

Infinities of love,


Monday, February 11, 2013


Hi Everybuddy! It's me me me me, Franklin the Bordernese, and I have a mom with a sneeze! heheheheheh

Seriously, it's been busy around here. First, something flew into Mom and she was sick, and now she has allersneeze. We dogs have had to work hard. When she stayed in bed, I stayed right next to the bed, in case she needed me.

Scout and Franklin did their jobs, too.

Scout slept on Mom's head to keep her warm.

When Sister Hurricane was here for Christmas, she saw Scout sleeping on Mom's head and said she thought her mommy's head had been swallowed by a black dog.

Harper's job was to sleep right up against Mom's back so it wouldn't hurt too much.

Mom says that Harper is better than any heating pad or pain medicine.

Mom is getting better, and we can't wait for her to get all better cuz we haven't seen elvisenronshorts in a while. We want to visit him because he adopted an eight-month-old puppy. 

Hi. Remember me?
I'm elvisenron -- what?
Franklin! That's not my name!

Whatever. I dunno what his problem is. Anyway, we want to meet the puppy and be his friend. Mom says the puppy is scared cuz he was in prison at the human society. We're so glad elvisenronshorts gave the puppy a real home and a family, which is what all us dogs deserve.

The puppy is a boy puppy, so he's not a bitch like Mom. heheheheheheheh

Also, Mom says that Valentine's Day is this week and she has a secret Valentine besides us and elvisenronshorts. On Thursday, she's gonna tell us all who her secret Valentine is. 

We can't wait to find out.

I love you all! I love you a whole bunch!

Franklin the Bordernese

Friday, February 8, 2013


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Today I present for your consideration a pretty intense film called Flight, starring Denzel Washington and released recently on DVD.

Flight (2012, Rated R) takes off on a wild ride when Captain Whip Whitaker (Washington, who received a Best Actor Academy Award nomination for this film) flies a passenger plane departing from Orlando that's supposed to land in Atlanta. He starts by frightening his co-pilot half to death with tricky maneuvers as he makes his way through heavy turbulence. When they reach sunny skies, Whitaker turns over the controls to the co-pilot and takes a nap.

But as they approach Atlanta and Whitaker awakes, the plane starts to fall apart. Using his amazing skill, Whitaker manages to get the plane on the ground, saving the lives of most of the passengers. But here's the problem: Whitaker is drunk and coked out.

Flight is no longer an action movie after the landing. It becomes, instead, a study of an alcoholic who announces repeatedly that he CHOOSES to drink, in spite of the consequences. So, what will happen when Whitaker is under oath before The National Transportation and Safety Board inquiry into the crash?

Washington definitely deserved his Oscar nomination. I still think Daniel Day-Lewis will take home the award for Lincoln, but Denzel Washington is excellent in this movie. He makes us care about a character who is, by turns, kind and brave, and a real jerk.

The supporting cast is good, but they're pretty much in the background. This is definitely Denzel Washington's movie. Don Cheadle plays Whitaker's lawyer. Cheadle is a very good actor, but he takes a back seat to Washington here. John Goodman did stand out to me, though, in his fairly brief role as Captain Whitaker's creepy "friend" and dealer.

This movie most definitely is not for children, and if you're sensitive, the landing of the plane might be more than you can take. The film also has brief nude scenes, the portrayal of drug use, and quite a bit of profanity.

Dee, I don't think you would like this movie. Rita, I'm not sure about you.

I liked Flight although the flight had me gasping in horror and I was appalled by Captain Whitaker's behavior. It's just that when Denzel Washington is good (and I'm not sure he's ever not good), he's so good that I don't want to take my eyes off him.

I was also pleased with the conclusion of the movie; therefore, I give Flight The Janie Junebug Highest Seal of Approval.

Thank you again for wishing me well. As I continue to recover from the flu, I've been hit by "spring" allergies. It's so warm here in northern Florida that everything is blooming. We need more cold weather before winter is gone, but I don't know if we'll get it. Oh, how I dread the heat of summer and the whine of mosquitoes.

My poor collie mix Harper doesn't know what his fur should do. He grew a winter coat during December and started losing it in January. His fur is still coming out in tufts.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Friday, February 1, 2013


Hi - Still down with the flu so I've been watching lots of TV and movies. Two quick movie reviews (both movies available on DVD) and a link:

First movie is a documentary called Chasing Madoff.

Harry Markopolos was a Wall Street numbers-cruncher guy who was the first to figure out -- or at least the first to tell the truth -- that Bernard Madoff was running a ponzi scheme. He doggedly pursued the story in spite of threats to him and his family. It took almost ten years before anyone dared to listen and stop Madoff.

It's a fascinating story of heroics and cowardice. The documentary also includes interviews with some of the people wiped out by Madoff. Seal of approval.

Second movie is Trouble With The The Curve.

This isn't just a baseball movie. It's about relationships. I thought it was interesting -- sometimes sad and sometimes amusing. I'm not a Clint Eastwood fan, but he's okay in this. Amy Adams plays his daughter. I love her. Seal of approval.

For you Downton Abbey fans, here's a link The Hurricane sent me:,91226/. The link will take you to a review of the show that focuses on the most recent episode and how gender roles come into play on the show. I thought it was interesting that after Lady Cora gave Lord Grantham and the pompous ass doctor a dressing down for allowing Sybil to die that she banned Robert from their bed. It's the only recourse she has to keep him away from her. If she divorced him, then she'd be penniless and without status.

If you read the review, beware of the comments that follow it. Some numb nuts put in repeated comments stating what will happen in the last episode of the season. I already knew, but I don't want it to be spoiled for you.

Thank you for all your kind wishes. I promise I'm resting and drinking lots of water. I feel great when I'm asleep. The problem is being awake and thinking, Oh, my I think I'm gonna die. The CDC has declared an epidemic.



P.S. I'm reading blogs part of the time when I'm awake so I'm keeping up with you. It makes me feel better to know you're out there.