Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Twitter Is for the Birds

These guys tweet. You shouldn't.
As of yesterday, Twitter stocks are soaring. This is good news for people who own Twitter stock but bad news for the species. On the bright side, despite yesterday's surge in the market, Twitter use has fallen over the past few years as more and more people flock--no pun intended but it's a good one don't you think--to Facebook.

The very existence of Twitter has always given me the willies. I never go there, but I know for a fact that Obama and all the other nitwit political leaders we have elected do, and lord knows why. What can one say of any value in 140 characters? Tolstoy's "War and Peace" has 587,287 words, so one can only imagine the number of characters. Not that I am suggesting that everyone has a novel within, but really, if you've got something meaningful to say, why limit yourself?

Do your part and avoid tweeting. It is literally for the birds.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

FILM REVIEW: As Sappy As It Gets

Some movies defy description. This is not one of them. Directed by the usually astute Rob Reiner, "And So It Goes" is about as sappy as it gets, which might have made a better title. It stars Michael Douglas and Diane Keaton, two pedigreed professionals who we might expect could be choosy about their vehicles. Not so, I guess, based on this treacly debacle.

Too bad Douglas didn't shoot the director before this scene.
Keaton plays Annie Hall (not her real name), only now she's in her 60s, childless and widowed, still singing those warbly lounge tunes at every opportunity; sadly this film gives her too many opportunities. Douglas is Oren Little, a rakish, rich real estate agent who lives in the next apartment and hurls insults at all the tenants, which they tolerate since he owns the building.

Oren's been a mean old bastard since his wife died two years earlier, turning his heart to ice. But we understand all too soon that it will be melted and that he and Keaton will live happily ever after. The melting is accomplished by an adorable 9-year-old, Oren's surprise granddaughter by his estranged, heroin-addicted son who drops her off with Gramps on the way to serving a 9-month prison sentence.

She--her name escapes me-- wins the hearts of all the neighbors, including the requisite fabulous black couple whose baby is born with the help of Oren, and bonds with Keaton, who she dubs "Grandma" on sight. They all end up having a wonderful time in Little Shangri-La, which is the name of the apartment complex where they live. (Get it? Oren Little, Little Shangri-La?)

Yes, it is as nauseating as it sounds. The worst moment is when Rob Reiner directs himself to fall into a kiddie Slip and Slide, making him look even more foolish than his bad toupee or this whole stupid movie. To be fair, I laughed out loud four times, mostly at Douglas' wry delivery of his predictable dialogue.

Who Knows What to Think

Moments ago I learned that one of my friends needs back surgery to end his "excruciating pain,' while another got an "iffy biopsy" and must have something removed ASAP. A third is in the hospital awaiting his appendix removal, while a fourth is deeply depressed because his lover dumped him. There are also junked automobiles, bad bosses, and no jobs being bandied about as reasons for moods ranging from disgruntlement to severe depression.

On the other hand, today one of my dear friends who has spent the last few months in chemotherapy hell, plummeting to the depths of despair and clawing her way back, much thinner, wiser and balder now, feels well enough to go see a movie with me this afternoon, and for that I am supremely grateful.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Dragged Kicking and Screaming Into the Modern Age

This is a dark day for me. I probably should be celebrating, like any normal nitwit, but instead I am filled with trepidation. Yesterday I got an iPhone, and I can already tell I'm dumber.

For example, I am not sure I got the right color. Or maybe it's the protective case that's wrong. See, I got the blue phone, but when I put the pink case over it you can hardly see the blue, except for on the back where it's pink with blue dots. It's even got a name: The Peek-A-Boo. This bugs me. See, I wasn't thinking clearly already!

In my own defense, I didn't actually buy it, my husband got it for me, saying I MUST have one now that I have an art gallery and need to be able to run credit cards on something called a Square, on my new phone. It's all very technical, but it seemed to make sense at the time. Although now less so, and I have only had it for one day.

Anyway, I saw Invasion of the Body Snatchers years ago--both versions-- and I think this is how they are invading our brains circa 2014.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Damn Cake

Today is my husband's birthday and for some reason I ended up eating a ridiculous amount of chocolate cake because he was born 57 years ago. FYI, it was from Whole Foods and one of the best cakes I have ever had--certainly among the top five--but still, I don't really like chocolate cake, it wasn't my birthday, and even if it were, what's cake got to do with it?

Even worse, this particular cake wasn't even for Mitch, it was given to his twin who brought it over for dinner with several slices missing from an earlier celebration of the same occasion. So I did my wifely duty and ate all those sugary empty calories from a cake that said "Happy Birthday Neil." And for what reason? Are we not all fat enough already that we have to run around eating cake just because someone was born? People are born every day--in fact 360,000 of them were born just today worldwide. Do they all need a cake every damn year? What's wrong with a little fruit cup or maybe a slice of cheese and an apple?

I looked up the origin of the tradition of eating cake to celebrate birthdays and it turned out to be the Germans who started it all. Ha! Figures.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Turning Off the Noise

                               Gordon Studer
I am so sick of the Internet I cannot even find the words. This will be my attempt to find the words, as I am hereby taking leave of the Internet for a detoxification process that I hope clears my brain. If I have any brains left after bombarding them with crap day in and day out, like Cameron Diaz was insulted by an interviewer, Kim Kardashian is pregnant, and there's a fabulous blog called Garden Rant that knows a lot about gardening, duh, what's so damn hard--you dig a hole, dump in some seeds and water.

I don't want to read any more tips on how to lose weight, how to stay young, how to firm my skin, how to keep my man interested, how to change my gender, and what's wrong with Israel. I am sick of Hamas and Boko Whoever who took all those girls in whatever country that was.

There's too much information coming into my head and it's bursting with stuff I don't need to know. I don't want to watch any more cute videos of babies or kitties or dogs getting all excited when their owner returns from Afghanistan or Iraq, besides my dogs always got that happy, even happier, whenever I came back from the supermarket so shut up.

Call Me Madcap! is going bye-bye. It will return when there is something interesting to say, when I see a movie that begs to be reviewed or when Hell freezes over. This is all because I don't know how to post my blog without turning on my computer, and when I turn on my computer all that stuff about ending varicose veins and 10 foods to avoid diabetic nerve pain and Hillary in 2016 shows up, and I simply cannot take another minute of it.

Who Needs Therapy?

I just received an email that divulges "12 easy ways to get younger." I am pretty excited about it. One of the ways is to "think happy thoughts." Who knew? I am quitting my shrink today. Anyway, following are the lyrics to "Whistle a Happy Tune" from the Broadway musical, "The King and I." I print them here as a public service:

Whenever I feel afraid
I hold my head erect
And whistle a happy tune
So no one will suspect
I'm afraid.

While shivering in my shoes
I strike a careless pose
And whistle a happy tune
And no one ever knows
I'm afraid.

The result of this deception
Is very strange to tell
For when I fool the people
I fear I fool myself as well!

I whistle a happy tune
And every single time
The happiness in the tune
Convinces me that I'm not afraid.

Make believe you're brave
And the trick will take you far.
You may be as brave
As you make believe you are.