The 6 Stages of Watching Movies With My Husband

My husband works in film. Well, sort of.

He works for a multimedia marketing firm that makes trailers, sizzles, and other promotional materials for upcoming movies (including those dumb, digital billboards you see at the mall). He’s in the Disney division, so basically Disney movies have been forever ruined for us – not that he’s telling us anything (they are pretty crazy about their security); but Disney movies are now usually marred by how many hours of overtime the ad campaigns kept Dad away from home.

So anywho, you all can imagine that watching movies with him is therefore…trying…

There’s all the idiosyncrasies, the technical talk before and after, the “love of the game.” All of this for someone (that being me) who doesn’t give a single fuck about any of it, and moreover thinks the majority of movies made these days are piles of crap.

People tell me that this makes me super unsupportive of my husband’s chosen career. That because I don’t feign an utter love of the industry and films, in general, that this means our marriage is doomed and I’m the worst wife ever. Well beyond the simple fact that I was raised to believe that a job is just a job, and that your real life is actually defined by what you do with your family and for yourself…isn’t it just a little shitty to say that because my husband works in film, that I therefore must change my longstanding feelings and beliefs and just general preferences? That would be like a woman who hates baseball suddenly pretending to love it because her significant other likes the Dodgers.

Sorry, but that’s not how I play the game.

My husband is more than welcome to have his own enjoyments, and I of course support him, and make hearty sacrifices, for him to work in the career he chooses to work in. And in return, I expect the same for me. And whenever I intersect in this whole film thing…well, I try. I really, really try.

I always thought it would get better, or maybe easier; but alas all these years in, it hasn’t. In fact, every time we watch a movie, I go through a process. Sort of like a process of grief, I always make my way through these stages when watching movies with my husband.

Stage One: “Sure, this movie looks OK”

Even when it doesn’t look OK, I think to myself that it does because I need to go in being positive so that I’m not disappointed or angered too soon into the movie-going experience.

I should add that my husband and I watch a lot of movies, so I really try to keep upbeat about it because if I weren’t I’d be annoyed with the movie choice most days of the week.

The problem is that my husband has a very odd taste in film. Usually it’s some fucked up Lars Von Trier shit – and I absolutely cannot stand that guy. Or it’s something like a musical (in fact, we are watching Les Miserables right now, which I’ve seen before and just can’t deal with because I despise Anne Hathaway).

So I go in thinking “sure, this movie looks OK.” Even when it doesn’t. This is basically the denial stage.

Stage Two: “When can I start talking?”

I’m a movie talker. Not at the theater, no way. But at home, I like chatting it up about the movie while it’s going on. It’s just the way I am.

My husband, by contrast, is a silence-during-the-film authoritarian. If I breath too loud he gets upset. When we first started dating, we went to see The Reader in theaters and I sipped my Diet Coke (not even loudly), only to receive the dirtiest look from him I have ever received from another person.

It’s in my nature to banter through the movie, so usually pretty early on I begin to crave it. Like an itch I absolutely have to scratch, I start chomping at the bit to be able to say something – anything – about the movie that happens to be on.

Stage Three: “How did someone come up with this crap?”

To be absolutely fair…not every movie we watch is crap. And, I think I have a really high and strange standard for movies. My friend Jeremy used to make fun of me for how much I disliked basically every movie I watched.

I guess I just have really high standards. Or no patience. Or maybe I’m just not a movie person. I don’t know, but I’d say that 9 times out of 10 – unless we are talking about 80s movies – I get to a point where I wonder how someone even came up with some of these plot lines/stories/characters/whatever.

Stage Four: “Why couldn’t we just watch Uncle Buck again?”

I would be perfectly contented watching the same, ten or so 80s movies over and over again. I could just spend a whole day watching The Money Pit on repeat.

Why my husband is not willing to just do this continues to be beyond me.

Stage Five: “Fuck it, I’m going to talk.”

I’ve given up all hope, we’re usually about halfway through the movie at that point. And this is when I start to get the dirty looks, the sighs, and the attitude.  I typically start off by asking how much longer the movie will last. Then my husband will pause the movie over and over and over and over and over again as I ask questions, which just escalates into me rambling or talking or making the comments I wanted to make much sooner in the film.

Finally, we get to a point where I realize that the length of the movie is only being greatly prolonged by his constant, incessant pausing of the film. So I stop, and I move on to the final stage.

Stage Six: Sleep

I just turn over, lay down on the couch, and go the fuck to sleep. Go. The. Fuck. To. Sleep.

Rarely does my husband even notice that I sleep through the remainder of the movie. In fact, the other day he started asking me if I noticed something in the movie we had watched the night before. “Uh yeah, I was asleep for the entire second half of that one, did you not notice?”

He never notices. Which is perfectly fine by me.

The next day I always wake up, refreshed from my extra sleep yet guilty that I didn’t spend that time reading, and we start the process all over again. Either that night or later in the week. Another lull in our daily lives occurs, and we decide to put on a movie. And my process begins again.

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I watched Ricki Lake poop out a baby tonight…

…didn’t see that one coming, did you guys? To be fair, neither did I.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me first tell you all about how I got into the position to see Ricki Lake poop out the baby to begin with.

Today began like any other Saturday. Of course my husband was off work, so we milled around – bullshitting each other and pretending to enjoy each other’s company; until that got old, and I decided to get in the shower. I was also pretty suspicious because he kept complimenting me. It was like three times in under an hour, which is highly dubious; in fact, I’m still wondering what he did.

After my shower, my husband’s shower, and all the arguing about everyone needing to stop playing Barbies for five minutes and put their fucking toothbrushes into their fucking mouths, we were ready for the day. Which we weren’t entirely sure what to do with, still.

So we headed over to my father’s house to do the housecleaning for his open house tomorrow. I’m not talking about a fancy party kind of open house, where he serves those little cucumber sandwiches to high class kind of friends. I’m talking about the kind of open house you have for the sale of a home. You know: where tons of strangers traipse through your home, fuck everything up, break shit, leave doors open, and then try to low ball you with offers more insulting than “I’ll give you three crayons and this carton of milk.”

Anyway, so we did the housecleaning, then we were at a total loss of what to do with the day. So we went home – stopping at the grocery store (of course) to pick up stuff for me to make dinner with. Once home, we did what we always do when we don’t know what to do: watched movies.

We watched Dallas Buyer’s Club. That was phenomenal. Then we watched The Hunger Games – finally, after all this time postponing for me to read the book, only for me to never get around to reading the book because I don’t like reading that Young Adult shit anyway.

Then The Hunger Games came to a finish and it was still early. Too early to go to bed; too late to go anywhere or do anything. So we scrolled through our Netflix Que for something relatively quick. Which is when we happened upon it: Ricki Lake’s documentary The Business of Birth.

Let me start by saying that I did enjoy the film. I thought it was very informative, and while a little too graphic and outdated for my tastes, it was – by and large – something that, at the very least, made me think. I like to think, so that’s good.

But I took issue with two things in particular.

Towards the end…

…the conclusion was made by an OB/Gyn, as well as the filmmakers and Ricki Lake, that if a woman does not experience the raw pain, intense emotion, natural induction of hormones, and vaginal-vaginal-out-the-vagina birth that she does not experience the bonding of motherhood, nor the love of being a mom.

To be clear: women who had to induce? Haven’t experienced the bonding and love of motherhood. Women who had caesarians? Haven’t experienced the bonding and love of motherhood.

If you are angry, you are with me.

And you should then be asking yourself: are you fucking kidding me? What kind of a horse’s ass opinion is that? The belief that a woman unable to birth naturally, or who chooses medical intervention (for whatever her reasons may be) DOES NOT EXPERIENCE THE LOVE OF MOTHERHOOD AND BONDING WITH HER BABY is the most horrendous, destructive, narrow-minded, and ignorant view of motherhood and, well, reality I may have ever heard.

Truly. Truly this infuriated me, which was unfortunate because (at least to me) it greatly discredited a lot of the other things said and discussed in the film. If they are that wrong about something so great as this, couldn’t they be wrong about a lot of the other things?

Documentaries always do this to me. They always fucking let me down like this.

…and documentaries always let me down in another way, which had to do with Ricki Lake’s vagina…

They show me more of something in particular than I really want to see. In this case, that thing in particular was Ricki Lake’s vagina.

Now I know what you are all thinking. If I watch a documentary about childbirth, I should expect to see at least something of women squeezing babies out of their v-holes. I get that, OK? It didn’t make me scream any less, or be any more horrified by all the nuances of childbirth I would like to keep in the deepest, darkest caverns of my brain – never to surface for fear of fainting. I just can’t take some of it, the majority of the time. (I can’t be the only mother that feels this way, right?)

Sorry if that bothers you. Maybe I too cannot experience the love and bonding of motherhood.

But what I really wasn’t expecting was to see Ricki Lake poop out her second baby in a bathtub with a bottle of Suave sitting on the shelf behind her. Nope, I really was not expecting that. Not one bit.

I feel so cold now. So very, very cold.

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The premise of the movie was essentially that home birth is better. I tend to disagree with this, mostly because of the fact that I’m a big, ol’ scaredy cat. I suppose if everything were in the woman’s favor, home birth is a perfectly safe and healthy option – with, of course, the help of an experienced midwife. Though at the very end of the film, the filmmaker went into labor (not Ricki Lake, thank God I’d had enough of that bullshit) and she had to rush to the hospital after all because her baby was breech. Long story short: the baby would have died had she naturally delivered at home. This raises some serious concerns that women face when deciding their birth plan, which I really don’t feel the film did even the slightest bit to address.

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I don’t know what all of your thoughts are on the topic, but I’ll just say when you’ve seen Ricki Lake squat a baby out of her vagina, with her bare boobs flopping all over the place, you just really start to see things a lot more skewed. Really, I don’t even know what to believe about anything after that.

We’ve Been Watching A Lot Of Documentaries Lately…

… and I’m not sure why.

Maybe Netflix is starting to get more lame than usual. I mean they just took Planes, Trains, and Automobiles off the Instant Streaming – just how in the shit am I supposed to watch it at least once a week now?

Really I think it’s that we go in cycles as to what kinds of movies we watch. Sometimes we go for marathon cartoon shows, like the Simpsons. Twenty episodes in one day and all that. Other times we go for scary movies or funny movies. Or new ones.

I should mention that we don’t watch regular television at all, with the exception of sports, so it’s either movies, On Demand, or Netflix…

Or nothing. Often it’s nothing.

ANYWHO, so we’ve been watching a lot of documentaries lately. And I’m not sure why. And all of them have a little bit of weirdness to them.

Here are the three we’ve watched this weekend:

Mansome

My husband and I watched Mansome Saturday night. Of course anything Morgan Spurlock and/or Jason Bateman is going to be a necessary win, though it was a little horrifying in and of itself in content.

I mean it was all about men and their grooming practices. And their balls.

It also prompted me to look up Jason Bateman on Wikipedia. You know, while I was sitting there next to my husband. I wanted to know if Bateman was in fact “happily” married. You know, while I was sitting there next to my husband…

So he is. And I didn’t realize that his older sister was the one that played Malory on Family Ties. No shit, right? Well I clicked on her Wikipedia page and BOY… does she look awful now. The 80s and Family Ties and show business really did a number on her…

Back to Mansome. So the best parts of this film were when they interviewed this total weirdo with a really long, red beard. Which was totally different in color than the hair on his head, I might add. He won some European beard contest – a little weird to travel across the world to participate in, but whatever gets you going.

And I should mention that – sure – he was all up on taking care of his beard, but in the scene that showed him getting in his car we learned that he wasn’t quite as enthusiastic about taking care of his car.

I’m saying his car was a total piece of shit. Maybe not relevant, but maybe it is. I mean if a guy is worried so much about his beard but not his mode of transportation…

The other completely off-the-hook part was when they showed the product creator and the focus group for this product called Fresh Balls. Basically it’s a gel that men rub on their junk to stop chafing and “batwings” (which I had no idea existed until watching this highly educational film).

And I suppose close seconds in terms of “greatest parts” of the film were when this totally closeted gay guy has his eyebrows threaded to remove five rogue hairs (he called himself metrosexual … I mean, who does that?); and, when the professional wrestler has his friend shave his ass with an electric razor.

Talking Heads: Stop Making Sense

This afternoon, my husband decided he was going to force all of us to sit down in front of the television and watch this.

He said it would be an experience. That it would be a musical experience we all should appreciate.

Now I can appreciate the nostalgia of remembering a few of the songs. And I can appreciate the aesthetics of the post-punk, avant garde era that made up the Talking Heads of the 80s.

But after a while it just got old. Very, very old. And could that bass player be any more doped out, in her 80s pantsuit that had its own wings? Obviously not batwings, because she didn’t (I don’t think) have testicles; but wings flapping out the side of her pants that just made me think of the whole batwings thing. Then I laughed out loud and my husband got mad.

Thanks a lot. Bitch.

At a certain point in the whole charade going on in this concert film, the tall, skinny, lanky, wiggly guy that is the lead singer just randomly started running around the stage like a complete moron. I’ve never seen anything like that before in my life – he just started jogging. Then sprinting. Then jogging a little bit more. Then at a point he got on the ground and sang while dry-humping the air. Then he went back on another jog around the stage.

It was just too bizarre for words.

Microcosmos

Finally, this evening, I was bored and we had nothing else to do but vegetate like broccoli. So I decided we would turn on another documentary.

Because you know. The others weren’t enough for the weekend, or anything.

I decided on Microcosmos for no reason other than I was seriously fucking tired of scrolling through the Netflix que. For those of you that do not know of it, this is a French documentary that utilized miniature cameras and specialized microphones to film bugs.

Insects. You get it? Fucking tiny little bugs. Spiders and flies and shit.

Here were my responses:

“Those caterpillars are complete morons.”

“Bees can seriously kiss my ass.”

“Jesus, could those snails suck face any harder? Need to get some Barry White up in there.”

“I think I have eaten one of those beetles on accident.”

“Hey look it’s like the 405 [freeway] only with bugs.”

“What’s so scary about those things is they’re fucking ugly.”

“That’s not a salamander, that’s an underwater dinosaur.”

“Wow look at that bird eat those ants… it’s like a trip to Hometown Buffet!”

“Is it weird this movie is making me hungry?”

So I highly recommend that you guys check out these movies. I’m not sure why. Probably because after all this poking fun and making random commentary I’m afraid of the legal ramifications by the filmmakers. Just kidding, I actually think you should watch them. If anything, for a good laugh.

Now here’s Snail Beauty, or as I like to call it Two Snails Get Busy.

My Husband’s Movie Lover Mannerisms

So living and being married to someone that works in the film industry is …an interesting place to be. There are all these subtle nuances I am supposed to adhere to. To respect.

In other words: to tolerate.

I can appreciate that my husband is proud of the work he does. And I can appreciate being a lover of an aesthetic art such as film. I myself swoon often over the philosophical writings of the greats I adored in graduate school. And I do love the acquisition of a new book. I get it – he takes pride in his interests.

I think my husband goes way over the line sometimes to a point that is just absurd, though.

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#1 Film Narration

The first movie I went to see with my husband was The Reader. Great film, and based on one of my all-time favorite works of fiction. While we were there, I bought myself a Diet Coke. A typical purchase for a movie outing, yes; what wasn’t typical was that Nick whisper-yelled at me during the movie because my straw squeaked when I took a sip of my soda.

Are you all with me on this? My straw made the slightest squeak – of all the noises in the movie theater outside of the film, itself – and I got whisper-yelled at.

Watching movies at home is an entirely different ballgame, though. That’s my husband’s time to shine, and by that I mean talk through the entire goddamned thing. I get narration: “deep in the forest lived a town of little blue men.” I get commentary: “you know what’s missing here is the backstory to that photograph…” I get voiceover: “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” And I constantly get the story about the guy that knew the guy that worked with the girl that was friends with the friend of my husband’s boss, who knew a guy that worked on that film. It never ends. Ever.

As with all things, love is a two-way engagement. If I’m going to listen to my husband’s incessant talking about all this film stuff, he should be willing to listen to me talk about a book I read, or engage in – gasp – an actual conversation with me about it. That’s sadly not the case, though. I think we’re too busy watching crap movies, which leads me to #2.

#2 A Lot of Crap Movies

We have a lot of movies and of those movies, I think close to half are total crap. I cannot tell you all how many times my husband has said a movie is “good” just because it grossed a lot of money or was popular with a lot of people. Even having not seen it. Even not really liking it himself.

So we own a lot of crap movies. Some of them my husband has never even watched – that’s how much they are crap. When I ask why he bought it he says “it did really well in theaters, seemed like it was a good movie to own.” Huh? And I cannot even count at this point how many movies are such garbage that he bought them, watched them once, then never watched them again knowing they are crap, but still argued they are good because of the fanfare they received. He calls those ones “an acquired taste.”

Acquired taste, my ass.

Sure, I have a very picky taste in movies. I don’t enjoy a lot that truly are good. I’m not talking about those here, though – I’m talking about movies that objectively speaking belong in the trash can.

We have seen a lot of bad movies in the theaters and on Netflix too, simply because someone at my husband’s work said we just had to see it. One I can think of off the top of my head was The Trip. It was about two and a half hours of listening to these two guys’ supposedly-witty back-patting, while they shoved food down their throats, that was no more funny than it was insightful. You just have to watch it, it’s brilliant. Similarly, there have been countless times that we have planned on going to see a movie and never gone because my husband heard or read that it wasn’t good. But it isn’t just taking people’s advice, it’s that he actually takes the position that the movie wasn’t good. “That’s a bad movie” he’ll say, and then something I’ve been waiting to see for months is off the list for date night. How the fuck do you know it’s a good or bad movie if you don’t watch it yourself?

#3 A Completely Illogical Rating System

I get really upset when I see that my husband has rated something on Netflix way lower than he should have. The only thing that is worse than that (which he does as well) is after I rate a movie, he’ll go in later and re-rate it to what he thinks it should be rated at.

So the way I see it: a five star rating system is across the board for movies, music, hotels, restaurants, and so on. That’s why one-stop-shop sites like Yelp exist to begin with – so you can rate everything in one place, and know what the ratings mean. How can a person be expected to know that a a certain star is acceptable for movies, but not hotels? And definitely not restaurants, but it’s OK with music. That doesn’t make any sense at all – a star is a star and it means the same thing across the board. Not for my husband, though. He will really enjoy a movie and still give it only three stars. He does it all the time – he gave Sleepless in Seattle (an all-time classic film) only three stars and then argued that this was a great movie, deserved of only three stars. Huh? Would you eat at a restaurant that gets only three stars on Yelp? Would you stay at a hotel that has only three stars on Hotels.com? Would you buy a motherfucking book that you were unsure of that only gets three stars on Amazon? No. No you wouldn’t.

#4 Movie Organization

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As with any avid movie collectors, we have a lot of movies. I’d say we’re getting close to about 600, but if you take out all the crap movies maybe it’s closer to 300 or 400 quality films. We have them in a DVD organizer – it’s a spinning thing that sits in our living room as the biggest and most ugly eyesore you could imagine.

My husband was tasked with organizing the movies and rather than ask me what would be easy for me – I being a novice to all-things-film – he just assumed that his psychotic organization from his single days would be best. You’re probably thinking to yourselves alphabetic or by genre for sure, as if organizing 600 DVDs by genre isn’t abnormal of its own right. (If it were just me, we’d just throw them all in there in no particular order.) This is coming from the guy who saw I added a lot of films to the Instant Que on Netflix over the weekend, though; so promptly spent his day yesterday reorganizing the list by genre on our Netflix account. Anyone who organized their Netflix account by genre is not going to merely put their own DVD collection by something logically simple, such as that.

Nope. They are organized by production studio. As in, the company that made the film. The number of hours I have spent looking for a particular movie because I couldn’t simply go to the section for movies that start with an A is staggering.

So what started as a hobby has turned into a profession, sure. Do what you love, and all that crap. But some of this extra-curricular shit has got to be a little out there. When I was in high school I worked at Wendy’s, and when I got home the Burger Bitch didn’t hang up her apron. I told stories from work. I gave anecdotes from the burger station. I made complaints about the customers. It’s all I ever talked about, until eventually no one wanted to talk to me anymore. You’ve got to have a separation between your job and your home life. If movies are your passion, fine; but at least take a break from the ins-and-outs of the industry long enough to just enjoy life once in a while too. Even if enjoying life is just watching a movie without all the back story and the strict organization and the attention to reviews. Just watching.

Take Me, Ryan Gosling! Take Me Here and Now!!

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I am going to be honest with you faithful blog followers. I really and truly had no idea what the whole hub-bub was about with Ryan Gosling. Sure he’s hot. He has that patch on his abs that makes a woman salivate. But I never got the whole “hey girl…” meme. I never understood what anyone was talking about.

Until last night.

I will be honest. After seeing The Notebook, I abandoned Gosling. As a writer, quite frankly I get offended by tripe and just about any book-made-movie by Nicholas Sparks is just that. The Notebook is crap. Cliche, overblown, under-realistic crap.

Last night, my husband and I were sitting around looking for something to do. We’re pretty boring people when there isn’t kid puke to clean up, or an ass to wipe (other than each others’ that is), so as usual Poor Nick suggested we watch a movie. Of course, I said “OK” and before even asking, he turned on Blue Valentine.

He said that it would be a sexy movie. A sexy movie that would put me in the mood. In spite of that, he had already started it, so I agreed. In the end, the movie depressed the shit out of me and sent me off to bed in sweatpants and with Kleenex in hand. Oh what a fucked up tale of romance beginning in a bad situation and ending in the worst situation possible that was; but let’s not talk about that.

Let’s talk about Ryan Gosling.

#1: Ryan Gosling Makes “Uneducated, Alcoholic Hillbilly” Sexy

In Blue Valentine, Gosling plays the older and younger version of his character; by older we’re talking four or five years difference. The difference in appearance is drastic, though; as I understand for dramatic effect. We’re talking a little bit of a gut. Widow’s peak. Raging alcoholism.

In other words, sexy.

Usually I rail on this blog about hating hillbillies. Alcoholic weirdos that smoke cigarettes, drink beer before noon, and have a constant stream of dirt under their nails are the very antithesis of the class and decorum this foul-mouthed lady considers attractive. Well now there is one exception and it’s name is Ryan Gosling.

It may sound messed up, but when Michelle Williams’ character was giving him a hard time about the fact that he drank beer at 8 o’clock in the morning, I perked up. The dirtier he looked, the hotter he was. Every time he had a cigarette dangling from his mouth, I wondered how amazing it would be to smell his breath. Creepy, huh?

#2 Ryan Gosling Turns Apathy Into a Term of Endearment

For me, the most heartbreaking part of Blue Valentine is that Gosling’s character doesn’t even know if Williams’ baby is his. She says she doesn’t know, and yet he marries her and commits to care for her and the baby as his own. Years later, we see that he has developed this unbelievable relationship with his daughter – one of affection and closeness that every father should aspire to – and he is perfectly content being a husband and father and nothing more.

Many would find that to be a sign of laziness. Apathy. An alcohol-induced lack of motivation, I believe that it really was a beautiful thing. I think Gosling’s character had it right – that work was a means to spend time with his family. That life was defined by those he loved and what made him happy was being with them. It was beautiful.

And it made me officially cross the threshold from hesitant viewer to “if this man was near me, Poor Nick would have to worry.”

#3 Take Me, Ryan Gosling! Take Me Here and Now!!

I’ll never forget when my cousin and I went with my mom to see First Knight in the movie theatre. He and I laughed through the majority of the movie simply because every time some sort of passion-infused moment was on the screen, my mother’s lip began to quiver. She’d grab her Kleenex, breath heavily, and try to get herself under control before the tears came a-streamin’. And then, there was a moment when Richard Geer was sitting in front of a fire with no shirt on. He was just sitting there – no romance or death or anything. Just sitting, warming up.

My mother wailed so loudly, the entire theatre turned to look at us. She cried for the remainder of the movie.

RYAN_GOSLING_1572640aI never understood that. I mean, my Trailer Trash Mom is pretty trashy and pretty nut-so 99.9% of the time, but what in Jesus Tap-dancing Christ’s name could make her wail like that? I never understood.

Then Ryan Gosling came on the screen half-naked in that hillbilly wife beater. The tears began to well almost immediately. The sex in the movie is actually at a minimal, although there is a pretty racy oral sex scene that made me feel a little faint. But just like with my mom, it’s the topless shot – not of Geer, of course. Of Gosling. Topless Gosling. Abs. That spot. I don’t know what it was, but I cried for about an hour and a half after the credits began to roll.

I think in the end we were lucky that we watched Blue Valentine at home. Had it been at the movie theatre, I would have been in front of others when I stood up and shouted “take me, Ryan Gosling…take me here and now!!”

This must seem weird to you faithful blog followers, though. I mean previously I’ve only reported crushes on weird old men and Hulk Hogan for the possibility of being pile driven nude. You know what would be hot? If Ryan Gosling played a wrestler in a movie. He could choke hold. Pile drive. Fist slam. Imagine the possibilities.

This Week’s STFU: People That Give Bad Advice

For this week’s Shut the Fuck Up Fridays, I’d like to address people that give bad advice.

Have you ever been given bad advice? I’ve been given plenty of it. Sometimes I’m smart enough to know that it’s bad advice, and so I ignore it. Other times I’m either tricked or my brain is so far up the asses I’m wiping and bathing and shuttling to and from activities that I take it and suffer the consequences.

Here are my most recents that I should have just told to shut the fuck up:

That blogger that told me the best and only necessary way to network my blog was on Facebook

What a load of bull shit that was. If you currently or have ever had a blog, you know that relying solely on Facebook or even social media in general to market your blog is probably a recipe for disaster of blognanamous proportions.

The biggest problem with doing this is you are relying on a terribly inconsistent and a too broadly used resource to market something that is niche. Blogs are niche – whether they are general blogs, mom blogs, cooking blogs, whatever. Not everyone goes to Facebook to talk about blogs, though; so not everyone you try and market your blog with on Facebook will want it to clog up their newsfeed.

Also, people are dicks. I can’t tell you how many people I have supported in their stupid causes through social media, only for them to tell me they don’t “do that” in return. Really? You don’t say?

Blog advice giver(s): shut the fuck up.

That person at my husband’s work that advised us to watch “The Trip”

Jesus Christ slathered on a piece of toast (and I’m Catholic, so I can say that), what a terrible, terrible, horribly awful movie “The Trip” was.

For those of you unfamiliar, these two British actors that are not funny, not attractive, and quite idiotic go on a little foodie trip through Wales to engorge themselves on scallops, tons of shit covered in butter, lots of wine, marijuana, and one of the guys sleeping with every two-bit whore he could find in their various hotels. It was two hours in which I felt like repeatedly banging my head against the wall, because if I did it enough I would black out and not have to endure the stupidity and boringness that was this film.

Next time this guy tries to recommend a movie, my husband has been advised to tell him to do one thing, and one thing only: shut the fuck up.

The person that suggested I give California Italian food one more shot

Eating California’s version of Italian food is typically like eating a bowl of puke. It’s actually worse than puke.

I don’t know what it is about it that turns me off so much. Maybe it’s California’s emphasis on fusion – fusing multiple genres of food into one. The result is a bad combination of spices and sauces that these local yupsters think is so posh and unique, when really it’s like a plate of bile and vomit.

I thought I’d take the advice of the person in one of my book clubs that suggested I give California Italian food one more shot, and have tried it a few more times over the course of the last few months. I tried different dishes. I tried to see the beauty in adding carne asada to lasagna. I tried to see the sheer awe-inspiring genius of fusing edamame with alfredo linguini. But I just can’t help but feel like an idiot myself for taking this horrible advice. Crap is crap, no matter what way you look at it.

To the California Italian cuisiners: shut the fuck up.

Those are just a few of the incidences of bad advice I have been given recently. At least bad advice that I’ve taken. Then we have bad advice I haven’t taken (like the suggestion that I put my kid into underwater ballet, whatever the hell that is); as well as unsolicited advice (don’t even get me started on that one).

What bad advice have you received lately faithful blog followers? I’m sure you will join me in telling those bad advice-givers a resounding SHUT THE FUCK UP!

Christmas (sort of) in July

So last night I was still not giving much of a shit about parenting or cleaning up like a slave or anything, so I decided my husband and I should watch a movie on Netflix to bide the time until we went to bed and began another night of trying to abuse each other with punches, kicks, and obscene noises in our sleep.

It ended up being the most amazing experience of my life. No hot actors. No steamy love scenes. Even still, words cannot adequately describe how wonderful it was. I will try.

10:15 pm

Poor Nick begins cruising through the Netflix Instant Que and – as usual – is suggesting we watch some weird shit like reruns of Twin Peaks. I don’t know what it is about that show that is so fucking weird – maybe the guy and his fucked up gum-chewing-slow-dancing-psychosis – but I am not interested. Ever.

I suggest we move out of our Instant Que and look for something that Netflix recommends.

10:30 pm

Fifteen minutes into looking through movies, we are still looking through movies. There are two things we do that are both laborious and exaggerated in how long it takes us to agree on something: decide where to go out to eat and pick a movie to watch on Netflix. It’s like it never fucking ends, but thankfully tonight we’ve moved onto what Netflix recommends for us rather than our Instant Que full of that weird Twin Peaks crap.

Pookies watched a lot of Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide (kill me, now) and Wonderpets on Netflix recently, so the top recommendations are children’s movies. I stop paying attention because I am growing overwhelming bored and check my Facebook on my Air Jordan. I hear Poor Nick mumbling under his breath and ignore it – as I usually do; although, I do catch when he says “why are they still recommending Christmas movies?”

I look up at the TV and begin to scream.

10:35 pm

On the screen is an image of my childhood: The Christmas Toy. I don’t have many memories from my childhood with my mom, since I only saw her a few times a year after she divorced my dad and moved across the country, but The Christmas Toy was one of them. Every year we would watch that movie and eat Chex Mix and actually have good times together (versus the rest of the time when she was a Trailer Trash Mom, hanging out in the local lounge trying to pick up men whilst I sat in a nearby booth).

Perhaps my all-time favorite kid’s Made for TV special, this is the Jim Henson version of toys that come to life at night. One of them (a stuffed tiger named Rugby) is unaccepting of the fact that he will not be the Christmas toy every year after his first and tries to go put himself under the Christmas tree.

After screaming, and then screaming a little more, I spend the next 10 minutes trying to convince Poor Nick to watch it.

10:45 pm

Poor Nick gives in. He begins the movie and within 30 seconds I am crying.

11:00 pm

Fifteen minutes in and I am holding Poor Nick’s hand so tightly he looks like he is in pain. He may possibly be in pain because watching children’s movies is pure torture to him; but it seems that he is writhing under my utter excitement. Regardless of this, I can’t stop – this is just so exciting to me.

When Mew – the stuffed mouse filled with catnip – comes onto the screen, I begin to coo. Poor Nick stands up and walks away. I continue to coo.

11:15 pm

Poor Nick returns after doing I do not know what (I also don’t care – The Christmas Toy is on the TV). “Are you still watching this junk?” he says and I grow offended that he would utter such atrocities about my Christmas Toy.

Rugby has made it to the Christmas tree at this point and is opening the Christmas present box so that he can get in it. He opens the box and Meteora comes out. Meteora is some sort of space queen Barbie doll, and she doesn’t know she is a toy yet. I squeeze Poor Nick’s hand again and start singing loudly the Meteora song. “Are you fucking insane?” he says and I continue to sing, even louder.

11:25 pm

After everyone has returned to the toy room, Mew is caught in the hallway by one of the parents. In the law of the toy room, if a toy is caught out of place by a human it is frozen forever. As I always do at this point, I gasp and hold my hands over my mouth – repeating “oh Mew!” over and over again (you can see how seriously I take this). Mew becomes frozen and Rugby goes to say his peace to his best friend, who has been thrown in the cat’s bed downstairs.

I begin to cry and Pookie walks out, still being awake because she thought she saw a ghost earlier. I catch her up on the story and she begins to cry also at Mew’s having been frozen.

Poor Nick looks at us like we’re complete idiots, but stays seated and I now believe he is as enraptured in The Christmas Toy as I am. In retrospect, I’m pretty sure he was enraptured by what to do about his wife-gone-bonkers.

Rugby’s love for Mew is so moving that Mew comes back from being frozen. The two return to the toy room, a big song is sang, then Christmas morning Meteora and a second Mew join the room. Pookie and I are now sobbing uncontrollably.

11:35 pm

Pookie is back in bed and I grab the remote to give The Christmas Toy five stars (Poor Nick has given it two) as I dab my tears from my face and blow my nose. He takes the remote to get everything turned off for the night and I have forgotten to add The Christmas Toy to the Instant Que so that I can easily access it regularly to watch, so ask Poor Nick if he will add it.

“You want to continue to put yourself through this?” he asks, but doesn’t need an answer and puts it in the que, where it shows up right next to Twin Peaks on Recently Watched.

Like I said, clearly the most wondrous night of movie-going I’ve had in a long time. And people don’t think I have good taste in movies. Well you know what I say to them? You are lovely, Meteora. Yes, so lovely and smart and brave and strong. So exciting, Meteora. Even lightning bolts seem dull when you’re along. How can you say “bad taste” to a movie with song lyrics like that? Tears are forming in my eyes again now even, as I write this.

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