Monday, August 27, 2012

Dark Knight Rises: A Film Review...Not Really

BH and I had date night last week (Thank You Mom!), so we decided to cash in our free tickets and go see the latest Batman movie.  What follows is the internal dialog of Yours Truly as I sat through this movie.

  • Wow, the masked guy's voice-over is pretty bad.
  • He sounds like Jean-Luc Picard doing Shakespeare.
  • I still can't understand a thing that guy in the mask is saying.  Is this what age-related hearing loss is like?
  • His name is Bane?  As in Cad Bane?
Wrong Bane.

  • I the only one who noticed that a solitary man just walked into the movie and sat down in front of us?  He's alone, the movie started a while ago, and I'm a little uncomfortable now.
  • If that guy pulls out a gun and starts shooting, what's my survival strategy? 
  • 3rd Rock from the Sun?  Yes, that's it.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt

  • Batman is a mouth-breather; must be because of that mask covering his nose.
  • Has Christian Bale always had that mole by his eye?  It has GOT to be in his line of sight.
Just look past it.

  • What's that guy doing now?  Was he wearing anything that might conceal a weapon?  I don't think so.
  • Hey, the mayor is that guy with the eyebrows!  Wasn't he on Suddenly Susan?
Yes he was.

  • This movie is too loud.
  • So.  Much.  Violence.
  • Batman purses his lips a lot; the mask DOES limit his facial expression repertoire...
  • Is that her girlfriend?
  • Bruce Wayne is surprisingly fit for an invalid.
  • Anne Hathaway is a bombshell?  I don't see it.
  • She does have an amazing figure, though, I'll give her that.
  • Alfred has big teeth, just like me.
Afred's teeth.
My teeth.

  • Is that a cockney accent?
  • I'm getting a little bored.
  • I think the guy is clean.  Just came to the movie alone.
  • 3000 cops trapped underground with no bathroom.
  • What should we have for dinner?
Smash Burger

  • I'm ready for this movie to be done.
  • Well THAT was a cliche plot twist.
  • We should've watched Total Recall instead.

About the last comment.  Not that I was expecting Total Recall to be a better film than Dark Knight.  My expectations just would've been lower.  Much, much lower.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Last Weekend of Summer

And here marks the end of another summer.  School starts Wednesday.

Summer of 2012, you were gone too soon.

Monday, August 20, 2012

A 12 Year Old Boy At The Beach

We've been taking a mini-vacation in our favorite place, Orange County, of course.  This time Disneyland, and a few of the local beaches.  Lots of pictures, lots of family time, and lots of fun.

But not lots of free time, so I'm behind on my blogging.

I'll get some posts put together soon, but for now, here's a little snippet of life from this past weekend.

Saturday morning, we woke up to another scorcher day.  93 degrees by 10am, and lots of sun, so we spent the first few hours at the hotel pool before heading out to the beach.

Turns out everyone else in the county had the same plan, and by the time we got to the water, all the lots were full.  3 beaches and two hours later, we found an open parking lot right off the pier in Huntington Beach.  We were all pretty miserable by then, since we had been holding off on lunch until we could park, and by the time we settled down to eat, it was 3pm.

Ruby's on the Pier

But lunch was dee-lish, and everyone was back in good spirits by the time we left.

As we were walking down the pier, P and I strolled arm in arm, enjoying the happy feeling in our tummies.  I turned to him and said, "Hey, it may have taken forever to get here, but at least you get to see all the girls in their swim suits."

P's response?

"This is America, Mom, not Brazil or Sweden."

Monday, August 13, 2012

Piedras Blancas Light Station

While camping up north at San Simeon, we took a tour of the Piedras Blancas Lighthouse and wildlife sanctuary.

I had low expectations for this 2-hour tour.  We were a group of 12, comprised mostly of kids, so I was prepared for lots of long sighs and pained faces.  Mostly coming from me.

Turns out this tour was not only painless, it was quite entertaining.  I daresay it was fun.

It helped that the views were breath-taking.

Along the way, we learned about the wildlife sanctuary, bought souvenirs, and  even spied some elephant seals playing in shallow water.

'Piedras Blancas' translates into 'white stones'.  Looking out at the beautiful white rocks that face this lighthouse, it makes sense why they named it so.  But what makes those stones white?  Is it calcification?  Can it be lime?

It's bird poop.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Summer We Went to Colombia

The summer I turned six, we took a family vacation to my father’s homeland, Colombia.  We were there for what seemed to be months, but it couldn’t have been more than a few weeks.  In the time we were there, we discovered  the joys of obleas and edible ants, saw our first panhandlers, and were warned to keep our earrings protected from thieves who would snatch them right off your ears. 

In Bogota, we marveled at the chips of emerald that were tossed into the streets by jewelers who saw no value in these tiny treasures.  In Cartagena, we saw our first (and only) sloth. 

We were introduced to family, so much family, who looked just like me.  I’ve been told I “look” Colombian.  All I know is that I look like my father.  Now that I’m older, I can see that I do, in fact, look Colombian.  A glance at the old photos confirms that, in Colombia, I wouldn’t stand out.  After a lifetime of wishing I looked different, I think I’m ambivalent about this revelation. 

Our vacation was a whirl of sights, tastes, and sounds.  Over 35 years later, I wish my parents had waited until I was older, so that the memories would be more solidly etched in my mind.  Now, a stray scent or flavor may trigger a memory of Colombia.  Funny, I remember drinking lots of Coca Cola on that trip.  We weren’t soda drinkers growing up, so for years after this trip, the taste of Coke would remind me of Colombia.

For the most part, this vacation was a little on the dull side.  Being a six year old, dragged from family gathering to family gathering, not speaking a word of Spanish, and eating food that tasted like rose buds was not my idea of a summer vacation. 

Except for the beach trips. 

My dad made sure to take us to the beach a few times.  I can recall my brother getting fried to the point of blisters and my sister getting stung by jelly fish.  It was all very exciting for me (and slightly inconvenient, truth be told).  But so much fun.  At six years old, these beaches seemed exotic and tropical, full of jellyfish and sloths.  Not like the beaches in boring old California.  And the people were so friendly too.  Coming back to our hotel room one day, two youngish women asked me where I was from.  In my best fake Spanish, I said, “Soy de los Estados Unidos.”  They said something else, but my fake Spanish could only carry me so far, and the conversation quickly faded to gestures and smiles.  My parents were nowhere to be found, because in those days, people thought nothing of letting a kindergartener wander around a resort in a foreign country, unattended. 

My brother and I are close in age, so we spent most of the time playing together on these beaches.  Here we are, playing together in Cartagena.  It’s one of my favorite pictures, because a) I remember loving that silly green terry cloth bathing suit, and b) it captured our relationship perfectly.

Occasionally, I think it would be nice to take BH and the kids for a trip to visit my dad.  But then he says stuff like, “You and the boys would be safe, but we’d have to be careful with BH, because he looks American and someone might try to kidnap him.” 

I still haven’t decided if he’s joking.

Monday, August 6, 2012

A Ballerina and Her Socks

When I was a little girl, I dreamed of becoming a ballerina.  Long arms, long legs, pointed toes, beautiful costumes...I wanted it bad.  But this poor little Latina didn't have much opportunity for stardom, so I tucked away that dream and fulfilled a different destiny.

But then I discovered the Los Angeles Sock Market.

Am I the only one who could spend a solid hour looking at socks?  This place has EVERY kind of sock you can imagine, from leg warmers to Japanese toe socks for women, kids, and men.  By the time I walked out, I had purchased a pair of Virgin Mary socks for my mom (bc she likes to be close to God), Frida Kahlo socks for one sister (bc she dressed up as her for Halloween one year), and Japanese toe socks for the other (bc she is always mistaken for Asian).

See what I mean?
Alright, back to the ballerina dream.  Turns out the Sock Market has a fairly healthy assortment of ballerina shoe in "socks that look like ballerina shoes."  The 6 year old in me COULD NOT RESIST, and I added a pair to my purchase.

Now, to make the dream a reality.  I enlisted L's help to play photographer to my ridiculous antics and it only took a few tries before we nailed it with this little gem:

And, now whenever anyone asks if I ever did ballet (which no one ever has), I can pull out this photo and say, "Why yes, I have, and I was quite good at it."