Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Thumbs Down: Generic sliced cheese food

In a panic about the state of the economy I bought a package of generic sliced cheese food while grocery shopping a couple of weeks ago. And not the store brand, but even more generic than the store brand. "Guaranteed Value American Sandwich Slices."

Tonight I had the opportunity to taste the individually wrapped American sandwich slice when I made a grilled cheese food sandwich to accompany my chicken noodle soup for dinner. BMG, a cheese connoisseur who has eaten many a sliced cheese food sandwich, generously remarked that the generic generic cheese tastes like plastic. He is being far too kind to the people at the Guaranteed Value Sliced Cheese Food Factory. Because it actually tasted like hot spit filled with sand in what was masquerading as a melty delicious exterior. And I ate the whole sandwich trying to love the hot spit and sand in the melty deliciousness. But I never loved it. I hated it. And now I'm sad I spend $2 on 16 pieces of cheese. $0.12 per slice is WAY too much to have spent on this garbage.

My advice to you, dear readers, is that it is not worth it to save $0.025 per slice to have to eat hot spit mixed with sand. Thanks for listening.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Facebook movie game: Do you have a life? I do.

I've seen 69 of 239 films! Well, at least 69 of 239 films in their entirety and in my recollection.

This game is going around on Facebook. SUPPOSEDLY if you've seen over 85 films, you have no life. Mark the ones you've seen. There are 239 films on this list. Copy this list, go to your own facebook account, paste this as a note. Then, put x's next to the films you've seen, add them up as you go (you'll understand as you move it), change the header adding your number, and click post at the bottom. Have fun, and if you go over 85, I won't think you don't have a life, but WILL think that you love movies!

(x) Rocky Horror Picture Show
(x) Grease
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean
( ) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest
( ) Boondock Saints
(X) Fight Club
( ) Starsky and Hutch
() Neverending Story
(x) Blazing Saddles
(x) Airplane
Total: 6

(x) The Princess Bride
() Anchorman
(x) Napoleon Dynamite
(x) Labyrinth
() Saw
( ) Saw II
( ) White Noise
( ) White Oleander
( ) Anger Management
( ) 50 First Dates
( ) The Princess Diaries
( ) The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Total so far: 9

( ) Scream
( ) Scream 2
( ) Scream 3
( ) Scary Movie
( ) Scary Movie 2
( ) Scary Movie 3
( ) Scary Movie 4
(x) American Pie
( ) American Pie 2
( ) American Wedding
( ) American Pie Band Camp
Total so far: 10

(x) Harry Potter 1
(x) Harry Potter 2
(x) Harry Potter 3
(x) Harry Potter 4
( ) Resident Evil 1
( ) Resident Evil 2
( ) The Wedding Singer
( ) Little Black Book
( ) The Village
( ) Lilo & Stitch
Total so far: 14

(x) Finding Nemo
( ) Finding Neverland
( ) Signs
( ) The Grinch
(x) Texas Chainsaw Massacre
( ) Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning
( ) White Chicks
(x) Butterfly Effect
( ) 13 Going on 30
( ) I, Robot
( ) Robots
Total so far: 17

( ) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
( ) Universal Soldier
( ) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
( ) Along Came Polly
( ) Deep Impact
( ) King Pin
( ) Never Been Kissed
(x) Meet The Parents
( ) Meet the Fockers
( ) Eight Crazy Nights
( ) Joe Dirt
Total so far: 18

( ) A Cinderella Story
( ) The Terminal
( ) The Lizzie McGuire Movie
( ) Passport to Paris
( ) Dumb & Dumber
( ) Dumber & Dumberer
( ) Final Destination
( ) Final Destination 2
( ) Final Destination 3
(x) Halloween
(x) The Ring
( ) The Ring 2
( ) Surviving X-MAS
( ) Flubber
Total so far: 20

( ) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
( ) Practical Magic
( ) Chicago
( ) Ghost Ship
( ) From Hell
( ) Hellboy
( ) Secret Window
( ) I Am Sam
( ) The Whole Nine Yards
( ) The Whole Ten Yards
Total so far: 20

(x) The Day After Tomorrow
( ) Child's Play
( ) Seed of Chucky
( ) Bride of Chucky
( ) Ten Things I Hate About You
( ) Just Married
( ) Gothika
(x) Nightmare on Elm Street
(x) Sixteen Candles
( ) Remember the Titans
( ) Coach Carter
( ) The Grudge
( ) The Grudge 2
( ) The Mask
( ) Son Of The Mask
Total so far: 23

( ) Bad Boys
( ) Bad Boys 2
( ) Joy Ride
( ) Lucky Number Slevin
(x) Ocean's Eleven
(x) Ocean's Twelve
(x) Bourne Identity
(x) Bourne Supremecy
(x) Lone Star
( ) Bedazzled (The Peter Cook/Dudley Moore version is what I saw)
( ) Predator I
( ) Predator II
( ) The Fog
( ) Ice Age
(x) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
( ) Curious George
Total so far: 29

(x) Independence Day
(x) Cujo
( ) A Bronx Tale
( ) Darkness Falls
(x) Christine
(x) ET
(x) Children of the Corn
( ) My Bosses Daughter
( ) Maid in Manhattan
( ) War of the Worlds
( ) Rush Hour
( ) Rush Hour 2
Total so far: 34

( ) Best Bet
( ) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
( ) She's All That
( ) Calendar Girls
(x) Sideways
( ) Mars Attacks
(x) Event Horizon
( ) Ever After
(x) Wizard of Oz
(x) Forrest Gump
( ) Big Trouble in Little China
(x) The Terminator
(x) The Terminator 2
() The Terminator 3
Total so far: 40

(x) X-Men
(x) X-2
( ) X-3
(x) Spider-Man
(x) Spider-Man 2
( ) Sky High
( ) Jeepers Creepers
( ) Jeepers Creepers 2
(x) Catch Me If You Can
(x) The Little Mermaid
(x) Freaky Friday
( ) Reign of Fire
( ) The Skulls
( ) Cruel Intentions
( ) Cruel Intentions 2
( ) The Hot Chick
(x) Shrek
( ) Shrek 2
Total so far: 49

( ) Swimfan
( ) Miracle on 34th street
( ) Old School
( ) The Notebook
( ) K-Pax
( ) Krippendorf's Tribe
( ) A Walk to Remember
(x) Ice Castles
( ) Boogeyman
(x) The 40-year-old Virgin
Total so far: 51

(x) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
(x) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
(x) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(x) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(x) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(x) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Total so far: 57

( ) Basketball
( ) Hostel
(x) Waiting for Guffman
( ) House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
( ) Elf
( ) Highlander
(x) Mothman Prophecies
( ) American History X
( ) Three
Total so Far: 59

( ) The Jacket
( ) Kung Fu Hustle
( ) Shaolin Soccer
( ) Night Watch
(x) Monsters Inc.
(x) Titanic
(x) Monty Python and the Holy Grail
( ) Shaun Of the Dead
( ) Willard
Total so far: 62

( ) High Tension
( ) Club Dread
( ) Hulk
( ) Dawn Of the Dead
( ) Hook
( ) Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
(x) 28 days later
( ) Orgazmo
( ) Phantasm
(x) Waterworld
Total so far:64

( ) Kill Bill vol 1
( ) Kill Bill vol 2
( ) Mortal Kombat
( ) Wolf Creek
( ) Kingdom of Heaven
( ) the Hills Have Eyes
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
( ) The Last House on the Left
( ) Re-Animator
( ) Army of Darkness
Total so far: 64

( ) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
( )Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
( ) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith
(x) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope
( ) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
( ) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
( ) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage
( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor
(x) The Matrix
(x) The Matrix Reloaded
( ) The Matrix Revolutions
( )Animatrix
( ) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
(x) Team America: World Police
( ) Red Dragon
(x) Silence of the Lambs
( ) Hannibal

Total so far: 69

Sunday, December 14, 2008

A perfect Christmas

For the first time in more than 10 years I've been excited about a little decorating for Christmas. I love the lights and the smell of a Christmas tree. Growing up my mom would enlist the entire family in decorating the weekend following Thanksgiving. We would string garland and lights on the banisters, bedeck the windows with lights, and tie red ribbons on nearly every object in the house that could accommodate a red ribbon. It was an exciting family project that, for me, heralded the start of the Christmas season. I had been in a relationship with a Jew for several years who objected to Christmas decorations. So, in the spirit of relationship harmony I swallowed my enthusiasm for decorating.

This year, BMG affirmed my interest in decorating, which has opened the floodgates for my inner Martha Stewart. But, the house isn't quite Turkey Hill Farm, so I knew I needed to start small. BMG and I decided no tree this year (the house still needs some work to make room for a tree). Sigh. I still wanted to decorate, so I decided I would string lights onto the wreath I bought to hang on the front post. But, no power source. Hmmm. What to do? Aha! I remembered using battery operated lights once for a work event, so I started to scour the ad circulars for similar Christmas lights that would just require a simple flick of a switch and, through the miracle of mercury or acid or whatever it is that makes batteries work, I'd have a tastefully lit wreath.

I found a deal on lights at Stop & Shop - buy two boxes of 15 lights each for $4. So, I bought two, wound the lights around the wreath, and wired the battery boxes to the back of the circle of greens. And then I ran out to buy size C batteries - ten of them because I remembered from my work experience that these lights took a lot of juice, and I didn't want to be unlit for even one more night. I excitedly put the batteries into the compartment, stowed the spares, and then tried to flick the switch for my "voila" moment.

One string of lights never lit. Apparently there wasn't enough tension on the battery buttons to make it work, no matter how many times I flipped the batteries over, switched them with new batteries, or tried to wiggle every possible moving part (and even some unmoving ones.) And the second string of 15 tiny white sparklers? The battery door was SOOOO tight that I had to turn the lights on and off with...my teeth.

While I LOVE Christmas lights, I love my teeth more. So, I've taken the battery operated lights off the wreath and thrown them away. And I've replaced the wreath with a beautiful (and free) swag given to me by Coop. The wreath is now indoors, hanging on the front window, looking festive and sharing its evergreen fragrance with us - a perfect substitute for a tree. (I may even hang ornaments on it.) My only string of regular Christmas lights is about 15 years old. And it is now at the bottom of a trash bag. Because it wouldn't work when I plugged it in after winding it around the indoor wreath.

No lights, no tree. The house is fragrant. And I don't feel stifled by my relationship. Feels like a perfect Christmas to me.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Stepford Gifts

My home has been barraged with ad circulars and catalogues over the last month. I was kind of hoping the catalogue people wouldn't find me when I moved, but apparently they have, or a whole new crop of catalogue people has discovered where I live.

I thumbed through a glossy, four-page ad for a big box housewares store this evening while waiting for my sister, who was at Target, to return a call. I found the circular to be depressing because of the Stepford Wives-like quality of the goods being hawked. Things like,
Talking picture frames ($19.99-$139.96)
"Mr. Beer" Deluxe Home Edition Brew Kit ($29.99)
"Retro Series Hot Air Popcorn Maker ($39.99)
Pet nail trimmers ($19.99)
Personal, hand-held breathalyzer ($14.99)
Hot chocolate maker ($19.99).

As I absent-mindedly turned the pages all I could imagine was hundreds of Christmas trees with the exact same collection of plastic crap assembled underneath them. And when these presents are all unwrapped, every person in every home will be listening to their identical talking photo frame as they enjoy the identical scents wafting from their identical mini reed diffusers, chugging their 8th glass of identical home brew chilled in their identical under-the-counter wine coolers. And they will know they are drunk because they have measured their blood alcohol levels with their identical breathalyzer/key rings.