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Posts tagged ‘Entertainment’

How my sister can navigate the modern world without having seen Anchorman I literally have no idea

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s 2013 and my sister still hasn’t seen Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. Help me understand. Why? Why? I’m in a glass case of emotion! See, she wouldn’t even get that hilarious reference. She’d just stare into the distance, quizzically, as the modern world carries on without her.

She must be the only person in the 18-34…er…25-39 year-old demographic group that hasn’t seen this movie. Advertisers are carrying on with their profiling without her. TV shows are crafted based on data that does not apply to her. She’s just in the corner, pooping hammers all by herself while the rest of us cool people drink three fingers of Glenlivet with a little bit of pepper and some cheese, and play jazz flute. Cannonball!

Seriously, when she watches Progressive Insurance commercials they must just go straight over her head. Poor thing. Does she even know that’s Chris Parnell’s voice playing second banana to that weird Flo? And this is a person who works in Business. How are you supposed to work in Business without knowing this kind of thing? “You’re a poop. You’re a poop mouth.” No, I’m not being vulgar. I’m trying to illustrate, via this film reference you don’t get, how you’ve let me down, sis.

Look, I get it, lady. You work hard. You are tired after a long day of swimming with the sharks down in the big city, crunching numbers or running figures or whatever it is you do. I don’t know what you do. That’s not my problem. Get a can of Red Bull and stay awake long enough to watch this movie before the sequel comes out later this year and you’ll be twice as far behind the rest of the world. What if you go to one of your Business meals and someone asks you how San Diego got its name?  And you don’t know? There’s a deal gone straight down the drain. Because, when in Rome.

Maybe you’ll say to me, “Sure, I haven’t seen Anchorman, but there are many more seminal films I also haven’t seen. Why don’t I watch a few minutes of those? Say, Apocalypse Now, or A Clockwork Orange, or Citizen Kane, even? Or forget that: why don’t I read a book or whatnot?” True. But let’s face it: how’s it going with that copy of Homer’s Odyssey I saw you buy, in some fit of nostalgia over our sunny college required reading days of yore? Thought so.

Look, I know it seems like I am teasing you. But I know how you feel. Oft I have considered reading Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace but instead watched Arrested Development in its entirety for the fourth time (MAY 26!!!!!). You don’t have to be Dr Chim Richels to understand that everyone needs to relax sometimes. But I kid you not, I am getting around to that book. Soon. Soon-ish.

Think of all the pitfalls you face which the rest of us can avoid. Hey, it’s a Friday night, let’s pretend we are not at home wrangling young children into pajamas and cleaning rice off the ceiling, and we’ve actually left the house. “Let’s go get some margaritas!” you say. “OK!” How about this place, you suggest: Escupimos en su Alimento? Uh, sure, you go for it, the rest of us are going suit shopping.

Even Justin Bieber, that numbnuts, knows that milk was a bad choice. Even he would know that if you are confronted by a bear, you should just mention that you know Katow-jo, the bear’s cousin. Oh Baxter, you are a little gentleman. I’ll take you to foggy…where? Poor Baxter. That wise little Buddha covered in hair. You let him down.

While you’re at it, sure, go meet up with that public television news team without a trident. Or throw a burrito out of a moving car window. You were lucky you got away with it that one time, but if you just put down that US Weekly with Kim Kardashian’s butt on the cover that you are falling asleep on and see the movie, you’ll never do it again.

And, perhaps most importantly of all, without this Anchor-knowledge, how are you going to fill those lapses in conversation that inevitably come, when you’ve exhausted every topic, every angle, every aspect of love, and war, only to let the thread of your talk quietly drop? You shrug, and quietly say, “San Di-AH-go. German for a whale’s vagina.”  And you’re back on air.  As it were. This can go on for hours – through stalled subway cars, the lag between the last drink and the time to go, miles of highway. You’re only going to get so far with the dang Odyssey once everyone nods wildly at the only quote they can remember, that business with the “rosy-fingered dawn.” Which happens right at the beginning of the thing, if I recall correctly.

I don’t really know what I am trying to say here, sis. I don’t know if there is any larger meaning to all of this.  Probably not. All I know is that when you are a big sister, you must guide the younger ones. And my good advice?  Sixty percent of the time, it works…every time. My sweet Brick.

So please, see the movie. It’s on cable a hundred times a day. In fact, I have it perma-saved on my DVR just in case you come by and I can Clockwork Orange you and make you watch it. By the hammer of Thor! Again, that went straight over your head…

(Warner Bros. Entertainment)

(Warner Bros. Entertainment)

My Year in Blogging: Wiggles and Wiggins!

Who are we? How did we get here? These are the ancient, universal questions that all bloggers must seek to answer. If they want more hits on their blogs. Why does my blog exist? I know my parents read it, but who are those so wholly unconnected with me that visit? WordPress was kind enough help me develop a creation myth for Five Uninterrupted Minutes. 

I love the statistics WordPress provides on the people who read this blog (aka my new best friends). And the most fun thing to do when I want to feel like I am blogging, but don’t want to write anything, is to look at the country map on the Stats page, and see where in the world people are clicking on these pages. I like to imagine glowing screens in places like Uruguay, Estonia, Mongolia, and the Maldives, where web-savvy readers gather round to chuckle heartily at my musings on parenthood and things I watch on TV.

Or, more likely: “I searched for X and have no idea how I got here.” Here are some of the actual search terms that have brought people here:

Colorful rugs for preschool in india Can’t help you there, good luck though

Jonathan Crombie is creepy NO HE’S NOT YOU’VE OBVIOUSLY GOT THE WRONG BLOG

What happened to Bob Costas’ face? Too much Botox, I reckon

I have a crush on Gil from Bubble Guppies AGAIN, MOVE ALONG

Is Norman Fireman Sam’s son YES

Aside from a surprising number of queries as to “why do divers use such tiny towels?” – a question I posed during the Olympics (here’s the answer, in case you are one of those people who seeks this information), the number-one topic that people came to Five Uninterrupted Minutes to read about is, according to WordPress Stats: What is up with Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins’ sideburns? Yeah, that. Hilarious/poignant observations on family life? No. Facial hair on some bloke. Who won a bike race.

Bradley Wiggins

Guess those sideburns don’t slow him down: it’s Bradley Wiggins (Photo: Brendan A Ryan)

Bradley Wiggins has quit Twitter, probably because of twits like me that ask these inane questions [But is it really so dumb?]. So I am afraid this one will remain unanswered. Far be it from me to question a knight of the realm. The best answer I can give is to direct you to this interesting documentary about the UK Sports Personality of the Year - Bradley Wiggins: A Year in Yellow from Sky Atlantic.

So to sum up: the top country for blog readership: the USA [where I know the most people], followed by the UK [Wiggo], and right up there at number three is Australia, because apparently there are a lot of people down under who are mystified, hurt, and confused about the Wiggles breaking up. And then they end up here, to read Oh no, I accidentally broke up the Wiggles, my most-viewed blog post of the year. I never set out to write about Australian preschool music, but there you go. Come for the Wiggles information, stay for the essay I wrote about “show-shaming.” Why not?

Most people from Oz got here because of some variation on the search terms “Sam Moran fired” and “Wiggles break up.” So many that, when you Google “Wiggles break up” my essay is the fourth item that comes up. Which is good, I guess? One even came here by typing “Captain Feathersword does not look happy.” Too right.

But sorry to disappoint you, I am not the Yoko Ono of the Wiggles. I did not break them up, by accident or otherwise. But in the spirit of giving the people what they want, I will endeavor to answer some of the burning questions posed to the Google gods.

English: The Wiggles performing at the MCI Cen...

Toot toot, chugga chugga. Later, Sam.(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Why do the Wiggles sing in Greek sometimes? I have wondered that myself. Anthony Field, the last man standing of the original Wiggles line-up, has a wife of Greek descent. Opa.

Does Murray Cook have children? Many people seem to be curious about this. Yes.

Lately, I have had many people seeking news of “anthony field affair.” So maybe there is a Yoko Ono of The Wiggles after all. I can’t speak to the matter, even as a Wiggles Expert (at least according to Google search algorithms). But I can link to stuff, so you need not seek further. Click here for an article. Also, for those who can’t get enough Anthony Field: The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Wiggle (via The Australian).

That last article gets extra points for having a good title. And that brings me to an important lesson I’ve learned about blogging from obsessing over WordPress stats: A good title will get you far. Oh no, I accidentally broke up the Wiggles? Lots of hits. An Ode to the Dreamcrusher, my next biggest blog post, which was also Freshly Pressed? Solid title, sweet hits. But Missing Teeth? I like to think it’s a good essay (who wouldn’t want to read about my family’s strange teeth? I mean really!), but the hits there are not quite as sweet. If anyone can think of a better title, I’d be obliged.

The other thing I’ve learned is that writing about topical, newsworthy stuff is obviously better in terms of generating an audience. I wrote a few posts about the Olympics, to good effect. August was my best month of the year for viewers. But the Olympics won’t be back for another year (Sochi 2014!). Dash it all to hell!

So I’ve got a Google news alert going on to let me know when the Wiggles drop some major news bombs. And when they do, oh, I will be there.

I’m still waiting. In the meantime, maybe I can just pepper my essays about children’s books and my strange Italian relatives with words like Super Bowl! and Justin Bieber! and see how that works.

Justin Bieber

Belieb it! (Photo credit: cukuskumir)

This blog is only nine months old. I haven’t been at it even a full year, but blogging has made writing central to my life again. And I am grateful for that. In this time, every connection I’ve made with a reader has been gratifying (My favorite comment of the year? From someone called Johnnyboy: “I’m stoned and I have no idea how I ended up here, but I like your review of Moonrise Kingdom.” Success!). Every time I hit the “Publish” button I feel good. It’s one more thing I wrote that I couldn’t write a year ago, or two years ago, when I felt so blocked. Being here has helped me start writing again after having kids, and I am proud of what I’ve accomplished so far, and excited to keep going.

Thank you WordPress! And thank you for reading! I am looking forward to Super Bowl! another year of writing Oscar Buzz! and connecting with other writers Kate Middleton! and readers Gangnam Style!

Are you being “show-shamed”?

Actress Tyra Banks at the 2000 Cannes Film Fes...

Fiercely real. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s mid-week, mid-winter. My friend Michelle has brought her boys over to play. We often spend these afternoons hiding in the kitchen, minimally intervening as the boys run around the house with capes, and maybe shirts, on. We don’t even sit; we just lean against the counter, eating leftover Cheddar Bunnies.

What’s on for you this evening? An often-asked question as the playdate winds down. We steel ourselves for the long goodbye, the tortured putting on of shoes. So what cultural feast will you and your gentleman husband attend? my friend asks. The ballet? Infinite Jest book club on Skype with friends in Paris, or Singapore? Late show at the Middle East? Candlepin bowling? What, pray tell, what? Don’t keep me in suspense!

“It’s America’s Next Top Model night!” I raise the roof. Sincerely, but not with 100% effort, floppy hands.

“I’m so jealous,” she says. “I have it on my DVR but I have to wait till my husband’s not around to watch it. He show-shames me.”

Finally, show-shaming, as Michelle terms it, must come to the light. Those who suffer, in their marriages, or friendships, reach out your hands, with whatever effort level you can muster, and take mine own! And hear tell of this secret suffering!

How do you know if you’re being show-shamed?

Do you watch a TV show that your husband, wife, or anyone you might live with, thinks is stupid? Well, how do you know they think it’s stupid? Do they say, “this is stupid,” and then leave you in peace to watch your program while they go practice yoga or dissect scripture or something, and then return when you’ve finished your stupid show and turned on The Wire? Show-shamed!

Do they, when you summon said stupid program from deep within your DVR (they should have password-protected folders for this kind of thing!), come into the room, roll their eyes, sit down with their iPads, and silently judge you as you watch, while all the while you know they’re listening even though they are pretending to read some BS on Instapaper? Show-shamed!

Do they, as you try to watch, interrogate you as to what exactly it is you like about said horrible show, openly lecture you about the program’s lack of value, remind you that they would never deign to watch it, and then imply that you are foolish for watching it, causing you to, over time, abandon watching the program in this person’s company, or even entirely? Show-shamed!

Do these people think they are so great, and that every program they watch is practically Shakespeare, and approved of by Entertainment Weekly, Salon, The A.V. Club, and other respected outlets of media criticism? But that your shows are for dummies? Like you? Show-shamers!

Do you, when watching a program deemed stupid whilst alone, rush to shut the television off when your show-shamer comes in the room, to avoid any of the above? Oh, the show-shame! 

I must thank Michelle for giving a name to this sad, but I’m willing to bet common, phenomenon. She thought of the term, she tells me, after watching a Sex and the City episode, “A Woman’s Right to Shoes,” in which Carrie feels “shoe shamed” after a friend judges her for how much she spends on her Manolos. And now, Sex and the City itself is a show that probably causes a great deal of show-shaming in households all over America. How funny. How sad.

Look. One of the things I like best about my husband is that he will cop to liking America’s Next Top Model. We both know it’s stupid, and we both watch it to revel in disbelief at the ridiculously large amount of self-esteem Tyra Banks has. Skip this next part if you are a show-shamer and you don’t want to hear any more nonsense about Top Model: [I mean, right? Who's with us? We just can't abide the way she has to stand above, literally above, her poor little minions, and call them up one at a time to hand out photos and rejection. She's like the bossy neighborhood girl who always had to be the teacher when you played school, calling all the shots, handing out scraps with big "F"s on them. But she's the millionaire, so f*ck us, what do we know? We actually don't even watch the show anymore since she fired everyone who was ever any actual good from the show. "But what about Ms J!" my husband said, with genuine concern. "I'm worried he won't find another job!"]

This attitude has won my dear husband big points amongst my friends. It’s all very endearing. And we have a lot of fun when we can watch TV together and yak about it. That is, if he approves of the show. But, when he doesn’t: show-shamer! Par excellence! Get ready for some more French: j’accuse!

When I am watching a show he doesn’t like, he exhibits all of the show-shaming behaviors above. Plus, he loudly professes his fondness for all the shows that typical major-league show-shamers like: Mad Men, Breaking Bad, The Wire (of course!), The Walking Dead. Louie. Game of Thrones (double of course!). And that pinnacle of all television shows, for those who really know quality: Buffy the Vampire Slayer The programs that advertise your membership in the club of fine, even hip, taste in television, that you are proud to shout your fancy for from the rooftops. That show you are smart, have good, nay, edgy, taste, and are participating in the New Golden Age of Television.

I like some of those shows too. Very much. But can’t I also watch Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team without the judgments? Or the 2o millionth season of Survivor? Or very minor (to you! To me they are huge!) European road cycling events on a small cable network without feeling like a weirdo? Or waiting till he’s not around? There, I’ve said it.

And then there’s one more kind of show-shaming, the kind that I feel particularly embarrassed about I am called out on it. Example: we watch Parks and Recreation. It’s a good show, no shame there. Then, as soon as it’s over, and I mean milliseconds after, he grabs the remote to delete it from the DVR, forcing me to beg, “Wait! Don’t delete it!” But it’s too late. It’s gone. Because it’s an affront to him to waste precious precious DVR space on something we’ve already seen. Oh, the humanity!

I like to watch things over and over; to me, a lot of what I enjoy about TV is spending time, in a sense, with characters I like, or being transported to a little world I like to visit. So EXCUUUUUSE MEEEE  that I’ve put my Gavin and Stacey DVD in AGAIN YES I KNOW I KNOW HOW IT ENDS. I see the smirk. I see he pities my strange, weak, (yet charming? maybe?) foible.

Gavin & Stacey main characters, left to right:...

I’m not being funny, I could watch this show a million times. It’s lush! 

So we’ve outlined the terms of show-shaming. The judging. The eye-rolling. The third degree. The difficulty abiding shows that are not approved by television critics and your very coolest Facebook friends/ComicCon attendees. And then there’s the related condition. It’s easy for them to dislike your programs. But you don’t want to watch Game of Thrones? Philistine!

I could go on but I feel like this post will snowball into a general discussion of the everyday conundrums of marriage, or living in close quarters, and a paragraph that starts, “And by the way, why can’t you find things in the refrigerator?” No. This is not an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond (which I personally enjoy show-shaming my mother about). I just put this to you:

What, ye show-shamed bretheren, is the solution? What do we do about it? Do we stand firm in the face of show-shaming, and ask for equal time for our shameful shows, whatever they are? Do we force the show-shamers to watch our banned programming with us, and try to get them to see whatever good we see in it? No! Because that is exactly what the show-shamer would do. Try to get you, nay – force you! to see their side.

The answer? Acceptance. That is all we can ask. For those of us with small children to contend with during the day – pipsqueaks who hold all the power in the household and the remote as well – an evening by the television, after the power-brokers are in bed, is hearth-time, where we come together, sometimes, and express ourselves in this modern and depressing way. My husband and I share our home, we share our lives and hopes and dreams, but we are still entitled to our own opinions and tastes. Though we committed to share a television when we stood at that altar all those years ago, it’s OK that we don’t like all the same things. What would that be like? Yikes. We still agree on the things that are the most important: we love our kids, our families, our community. We neither of us care for seafood. Beyond that, our separate interests should make us interesting to each other, not alien. So let’s remove judgement from at least this small, but dear, portion of our lives. One that’s totally within our control.

So if, show-shamer, you enter the room when a shamed show is on the screen, simply do not judge. Say, “Oh, you are watching that delightful episode of Gavin and Stacey again. The one where they have the surprise barn dance for Gwen’s birthday. That’s nice. I’ll just be here, folding this laundry, supporting you.” Or the beshamed can say, “Oh I can finish this up later, that’s no problem. Why don’t we watch a Louie? I hear Parker Posey’s in this episode. That will be great!” See? Oh, the domestic bliss.

Sleeper (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

If we have to watch Buffy, can we at least watch one with Spike in it? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Back to mid-week, mid-winter. The boys are asleep. We’ve heard the last of them, and Max and Ruby, for the day. But there’s a friend on our doorstep! It’s Michelle, bearing red wine. A Malbec, from Argentina. There is a plate of the finest cheeses and charcuterie, perhaps some cornichon, balanced on a child’s chair in front of the TV. The CW is on. Tyra’s going to teach the young models how to booty-tooch. Then, a photo shoot in which they have to pretend to be Greek salad. And we will freely enjoy. But if Michelle even thinks about suggesting we watch the Real Housewives of New Jersey or some such crap, back out into the cold, dark night she goes!

Are there any of you out there feeling show-shamed? For any type of TV show, cheesy, classy, or otherwise? There’s room for all points of view in show-shaming! Any type of show can bring on the shamer’s chilling gaze!

And if there are any show-shamers among us: show your faces! You will not be judged here! Maybe you will a little bit. But still! Tell us, why oh why?

Moonrise Kingdom: A review from someone who’s been to the movies four times in five years

Since having children, I don’t go to the movies much anymore (see post title). Part of it is that when we get a sitter, I’d rather go out to dinner with friends. Part of it is that I prefer TV. You know, classy, movie-ish TV like Downton Abbey, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, and America’s Next Top Model. And don’t you wish you knew what the other three movies I’ve actually bothered to see in the theatre have been? Maybe I’ll tell you, maybe not.

It was our wedding anniversary on Saturday, so we thought dinner and the new Wes Anderson movie would be a novel way to celebrate. We went to the theatre in Cambridge, took our seats, and checked out the latest trends in eyeglasses: professorial, European, and hipster. Oh, and here’s another reason I’m not so keen on the movies: I’m short. The woman in front of me had this gigantic bun piled cockeyed on top of her head, and I spent the whole time bobbing and weaving around this big beehive.

When Rushmore came out, I placed it firmly in my top five favorite movies ever. I was not sick of Jason Schwartzman’s schtick yet, and I found the whole thing quirky, charming, and unlike anything I’d ever seen. I was anxious to see The Royal Tenenbaums and was slightly less enchanted. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou? The Darjeeling Limited? And now Moonrise Kingdom? I’ve been trying to figure out why I’ve fallen out of love with Wes Anderson for a while. I was particularly drawn to his newest movie by the premise: two children who fall in love and run away together on an island off the coast of Maine. I was equally drawn to it by the font Anderson chose for the movie poster…and that’s the problem.

I love fonts, I admire good design, and I really look forward to these elements of Wes Anderson movies; it’s a large part of why I’ve enjoyed them. But (and I know I’m not the first person to say this) Anderson places so much emphasis on these elements that he himself becomes a character, almost the star of his own movies, while the emotional lives of the onscreen characters become secondary. If he could do both design and storytelling equally well, I wouldn’t have a problem with it. But as I watch, I can sense him in each scene, just out of shot, consulting earnestly about where to place each carefully-chosen prop, or finding the perfect, quaintest location to occupy three seconds of film. Meanwhile, the characters are hastily drawn, and the plot is uneven. And that, to me, is missing the point of the the film watching experience. At the end, I feel that Anderson probably had a lot of fun, but me? I felt a bit left out.

This was made particularly clear at the last moment of Moonrise Kingdom. We’ve just said good-bye to the characters. There is a shot of the beach where the children, Suzy and Sam, have set up their campsite/hideway; then the fabulous font proclaims “For Juman” in the corner of the screen, and cut to the credits. And with that dedication, I snapped out of whatever trance had taken hold of me while watching the film, and I was reminded that the movie was about Wes Anderson, not Suzy and Sam. He ended with the focus squarely on himself with that dedication to his partner (I googled “Juman” to confirm this). At that, we got up and ran for the exit so we could hurry home and pay the babysitter.

Maybe I missed some stuff behind the hairdo of the lady in front of me, but the same thing goes for the beginning of the film. Anderson goes to great pains to draw viewers in with these elaborate, diorama-like settings he creates; in Moonrise Kingdom, the camera moves from room to room in this house on the island of New Penzance where the Bishop family lives. We notice each chair, record player, toy, placed just so. We focus on them as we hunt for the characters as they move about the house. The people are hard to find, could it be a metaphor? Perhaps??? Meanwhile, two great actors, Bill Murray and Frances McDormand, are not given very much to do; working within the confines of the mannerisms and costumes Anderson has given them, they don’t have much room to confront their conflicts, like infidelity, bitterness, and a daughter who is “troubled,” yet it’s not clear why.

It’s like looking in a dollhouse. And, like playing with dolls, I felt that I had to fill in a lot of the story for myself. I thought the two actors who played Suzy and Sam were the best part of the movie; though they were mounted like butterflies, they were so natural and sympathetic. They were the source of warmth in a pretty cold movie. But to get at that warmth, I needed to impose myself in the movie, just like Anderson imposed himself in the sets, to imagine those children as my own: how would I feel about them, how would I react if I were put into the just-so shoes of the adults in the movies? So I imagined my own C growing up, having his own inner life, like these children at age 12: having his own first big love story, his first flush of teenaged angst. And because I empathized for my own child, I could better empathize for them. I’m not saying I want to be a lazy viewer, that I want it all laid out for me; I want to think while I watch movies, but isn’t this a little too much work? Can’t we get the same level of detail in the character, and as we get in the campsite?

It’s not that I don’t love attention to detail. It is really fun to see a lushly-imagined world in film. I loved what Wes Anderson did with Camp Ivanhoe in the movie, though it’s probably nothing like the prepubescent Thunderdome that a Boy Scout camp is in real life. One of the other four movies I’ve seen these past five years is The Secret World of Arietty, Hayao Miyazaki’s animated version of The Borrowers. I took C to see it – he loves Miyazaki movies because he is fancy and international: Ponyo, Spirited Away, and My Neighbor Totoro are all favorites. I love them too; and I think they succeed in the way I find Wes Anderson’s movies lacking. In Arietty, for instance, Miyazaki has thought of every detail in bringing to life this tiny world that the Borrowers inhabit; he thought of a million ways these tiny creatures can use everyday minutia like pushpins, postage stamps, and blades of grass to create a fully-realized wee household. It’s magical, but there is also a compelling, heartfelt story there.

Maybe Miyazaki’s movies work better than Anderson’s because they are meant for children. In a children’s movie, stories and characters are simpler (yet no less moving), but the worlds the characters inhabit are outsized for a child’s imagination. I think that Anderson’s best movie lately was for children, The Fantastic Mr Fox; there, he looked to a master (Roald Dahl) for the story, and left himself free to color it in with all of the creative detail that he liked. Perhaps he should stick to that. And, on the flip side, maybe I enjoyed Anderson’s movies more post-college than I do now, post-children, because they appeal more to a younger person’s view of the world: full of color, just a few whiffs of emotion, lots of style, and a soundtrack that does much of the work of conveying meaning to life. I’m thinking of all those mix tapes I listened to pounding up and down Prospect Park West in the snow.

Maybe maybe maybe. I don’t know. I’m not Lisa Schwartzbaum. The other two movies I’ve seen post-children are The Dark Knight and Horrible Bosses (I know, right?), so clearly I am no expert. I’m just proud of myself getting out of the house on a Saturday night. I will tell you that going to the movie and thinking of all their future travails made me miss my little ones so much, that I couldn’t wait to get home and kiss them and carefully rearrange their teddy bears as they slept. So that’s a little sign of success, I think.

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