Month: November 2011

Arthur Christmas!!

I must say that I really enjoyed the trailers for Arthur Christmas but I have developed a completely rational fear of movie trailers lately.  My reason for this fear, is that trailers are most often an illusion.  They can make a good movie look great and an awful movie look fantastic.  More often than not these trailers fool me into believing that I am emptying my wallet for a masterpiece rather than the crap Hollywood prefers to mass-produce.  Today, after a marathon of “Lifetime” Christmas movies, I decided to take a risk; I bought a ticket to see ‘Arthur Christmas.’  Gladly, I can assure you that it was well-worth it and a brilliant end to my Christmas-movie marathon!

I sat in the theater and with the opening credits alone, was immediately transformed into a child again.  With my feet up on my seat, my arms wrapped around my knees pulling them close to my chest and a smile from ear to ear, I could not take my eyes off the screen.  “Arthur Christmas” is truly a unique holiday movie.

The film is a fantastic commentary on both the family and political dynamics disguised by Christmas cheer.  It was relatable and heartwarming all at once.  I don’t claim to be a great movie critic, mostly because I feel guilty giving away too many key points of a movie, so I won’t give away a thing.  I believe in offering you my opinion only.  The movie was very well done; a great story, great actors, great direction, and great animation.   You will develop a new appreciation for the work that they put in over at the North Pole.  Afterall, magic can only do so much.   If you need a bit of Christmas spirit, a couple of hours with Arthur Christmas should do the trick.

**In layman’s terms-  ARTHUR CHRISTMAS WAS FREAKIN’ AWESOME!  I LOVED IT!  I AM GOING TO BUY IT AS SOON AS IT’S ON DVD!

Okay, I’m calm now.

 I LOVE CHRISTMAS! 

Okay, all better now.  Happy Holidays. 🙂

The Strongest Love

As I walk into what was once my grandparent’s dining room, I am struck by a rush of emotions.  In the center of the room remain the indentations in the plush creme carpet left by a long-gone, beautiful wooden dinette set.  Now in its place lies an empty wheelchair.  Up against the far left wall is a twin-sized bed; its mate upon the opposite wall.  A stack of adult diapers and an I.V. pole sit ominously between the twins with a small baby monitor perched upon the nearby table.

This is not the Thanksgiving of my youth.  Years have passed and life has taken its toll.  A few years ago my grandmother suffered a massive stroke, leaving her unable to communicate or move on her own.  She now resides in what was once her prized dining room, unable to climb the stairs to the bedroom she once shared with her husband.  While I feel for her tremendously and constantly wonder what she might be thinking and feeling in the days of late, that is not what moves me most in this room.  What moves me most is that second twin bed against the far left wall.

With fifty-eight years of marriage behind them, my grandfather left the comfort of his bedroom to lay with his wife.  She isn’t the same woman he married, they can’t talk the way they once could, and her condition leaves her quite temperamental but that means nothing to him.  He loves her just the same.  After fifty-eight years, he’s not about to leave her side now.

Perhaps this doesn’t mean much to those of you who don’t know my grandparents, but to me it means a great deal.  I am a child of divorce and for those of you who have been there, it leaves a scar.  But to see these two people who have been together through thick and thin is enough to bring back a glimmer of hope.  Even during her hardest moments, moments that wear just as heavily on my grandfather, he stands strong.  You can see the love in his eyes when he looks at her.  There now resides a sadness behind those eyes, but never to be overshadowed by his love.  I am grateful that a love so strong truly does exist.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Vodka Vagina?!?!?!

Do me a favor and watch this video, ok?

Ok, now you’ve seen it.  Has your head exploded yet?  To recap, teenagers (also known as morons) are sticking tampons, yes I said tampons, in a bucket of vodka.  But that’s not weird enough yet, once they let the tampons soak up the vodka, they shove them into their vaginas and the boys, those little scamps, shove them up their asses.  What clever kids we’re raising today.

“It’s a new way to get high, guys!  It’s so cool!  No one will judge you, man, it’s totally cooler than being a crack-head.”-  That’s how I imagine these kids trying to sell the idea to their even dumber friends.  I mean, why WOULDN’T you just shove vodka up your vagina?  Why not just squirt it right up there with a douche?  (For any moron reading this, that wasn’t a suggestion.  It was sarcasm, and if you seriously considered it you need a fucking therapist.)

I honestly can’t even wrap my head around this idea.  Is this what the world has come to?  Are things so bad that our kids are not only turning to medicine cabinets, and cleaning products to get high, but now they’re dumping the liquor cabinet into the bathroom drawer and seeing what happens?  Who came up with this idea?  You know what, I don’t give a damn who came up with it but someone needs to beat whoever it was over the head with a plunger until all that vodka squirts out his ass.

Children, do you have any idea how dangerous this is?  Not to mention stupid.  Don’t you kids care about being thought of as stupid anymore?  What ever happened to good old-fashioned insecurity?  Now no one cares how dumb they look as long as they’re too numb to feel it?  Allow me to call you out on it.  ANY ONE WHO TRIES THIS IS A COMPLETE AND TOTAL JACKASS.  There, I said it.  Ah, I feel so much better now.

I don’t know about you ladies but I personally don’t enjoy vaginal discomfort so I’m not about to purposefully shove some alcohol up there that will most likely burn like hell and cause more problems than it’s worth.  I don’t like problems.  I especially don’t like problems down there.  When the hell did this world get so full of sadistic crazies?

Children, and adults because let’s not pretend a few of those morons haven’t tried it either, drugs and alcohol are bad for you.  Did you skip school the day they taught us that?  Have you never seen the commercials about staying above the influence?  Some of them are cool commercials.  LISTEN TO THEM!  Do you think that shoving alcohol directly into your bloodstream is somehow safer than orally ingesting it?  What is wrong with you?  It is the exact opposite of safer!  It will kill you faster.  At least when you drink too much (and I mean actually drink it…you know, like us old-fashioned folks do) your body knows to make you sick.  It makes you sick to save your life and expel all the garbage you just put into it.  Shoving alcohol up your vagina and directly into your blood stream will give you none of the warning signs, making you completely open to alcohol poisoning (that’s the less cool term for OD-ing but it’s basically the same damn thing).  Good luck with that, kiddies.  Enjoy your alcohol soaked tampons because you know what?  You deserve it.

This is so Darwinian.  “Survival of the fittest”.  Only the strong(not the dumb as hell) survive.

Open Letter to All Restaurant-Goers

Dear Restaurant Patrons,

This is a kind, well-meaning letter to all of you who enjoy a nice meal out on occasion; a letter from your former waitress.  Here are some fun facts about your servers:

  • Your servers are hard-working HUMAN BEINGS.  They are not your slaves nor are they robots to be denied your respect.  Perhaps your server does not live up to your expectations but that does not give you the right to scream at them or belittle them.  They have feelings too and no one likes to be scolded (especially for reasons beyond their control-which is most common in large restaurants).

  • Your servers do not receive a paycheck.  Legally, the establishment employing them must provide them with minimum payment and therefore they receive a wage of about $2.50/hr or so.  After taxes, their checks are most often in the negative.

  • What does this mean for servers?  THEIR SOLE SOURCE OF INCOME COMES FROM TIPS.

  •  What does this mean for you?  IT IS INAPPROPRIATE TO DINE OUT AND NEGLECT TO TIP YOUR SERVER!!  Anything less than a 15% tip is unacceptable.  I understand that not everyone in the world has experience as a server and may not understand the amount of work that goes into it.  Let me try to give you some insight.  Serving is a very physically demanding job requiring a lot of patience and organization.  We all have trouble with our jobs.  They can be frustrating and difficult but not all of us tolerate the daily abuse of strangers screaming at or insulting us on a daily basis.  As a server, I ask you to take this into account and be kind to your servers and tip them for heaven’s sake!

  • Let me put it another way, not tipping your server is the equivalent of stealing from them.  Slavery is illegal in this country and you are required to pay for the service given to you.  By paying for your meal you have paid for the service the cooks have provided for you, your food.  This means you are still responsible for the service given to you by your server; the one running around getting you napkins, refilling your salt or ketchup, checking on your to make sure that your night out is enjoyable.  Not tipping your server will NEVER be acceptable in America.  Like I said before, your servers are not your personal slaves.

  • Plumbers, mechanics and construction workers all make decent wages.  All of these positions are physically demanding and the hours are rough, not too dissimilar to serving. Yet can you imagine only having to tip your plumber?

  • Perhaps America could take a cue from Europe and pay its servers a decent wage.  This way no one would need to worry about leaving a tip.

No one can be expected to rely on the kindness of strangers to make a living and yet that is what we ask our servers to do every day.  In conclusion, this is your server kindly asking you to remember that nothing  in this world is free.  Stop stealing from your servers, folks.

P.S- No disrespect intended to those of you who already know proper restaurant etiquette.  As a matter of fact, I commend those of you who treat your servers well and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Most Sincerely,

Your very broke server

Don’t Judge Me

” I could be a scientist.  Bill Nye is so cool!”

“I could be a doctor.  Dougie Howser did it, so can I.  Plus, I would look AWESOME in a lab coat!”

“I could be a lawyer.  Jim Carey was a hilarious but evil, manipulative lawyer.  I can be a lawyer and be a good person too, right?  Eh…ok, maybe I don’t want to be a lawyer.”

Ah, the thoughts of a pre-teen.  Clearly, my rationale for choice of career was not as sound as it could have been but is it any more so now?  As a child, I always wondered what I would grow up to be.  I’ve grown up some now and I am still wondering the same question.  I can’t lie though, I still think I would look bangin’ in a lab coat.

Aside from lab coats and really cool science guys, there is so much more to choosing a career.  Years ago, I was bitten by a bug.  No, not the love bug.  Love’s a bitch but it was the show business bug, a very close second, that got me.  Once you’ve been bitten, you never heal.  Either you give into the bite or the scar stays with you forever.  Cocoa butter, mederma, microdermabrasion, I don’t care what you do; that thing won’t fade.  That scar will bother you more and more with every step you take to hide it.

Denying your creative instincts leaves you with an emptiness like no other.  There are many different types of artists out there.  There are your struggling artists, those who spend their time working to pursue their craft, taking menial jobs just to make the rent.  Then you have your hobby artists, those who seek out a full-time position while pursuing their craft occasionally as a personal hobby.  Lastly, you have the most pitiful of artist, the artist-in-denial.  The artist-in-denial chooses to ignore their craft entirely to focus on other pursuits, whether it be making money, finding love, changing the world, who knows.  They deny themselves their innate need to create, leaving them to feel incomplete and confused.  I write to you as the latter.  I am an artist-in-denial.

Hello, my name is Gina and I am an artist-in-denial.  I’ve been in denial for at least two years now.  That was a lie, I’ve been in denial for about 9 years.  Ever since I learned that I was in love with the arts, I have been trying to talk myself out of it.  Afterall, we can’t all be Lea Michele, right?  (No matter how many times people insist that I am INDEED, Lea Michele).  “There is no money to be made in the arts, there is no respect to be earned in the arts, there are no real jobs in the arts.”  So many stigmas, so little time.  I just wanted to be “normal”.  I wanted to settle into a pleasantly boring job that would afford me a good salary and feel satisfied in my decision.  I don’t want to feel the need to entertain.  I don’t want to need attention.  I don’t want to want people to know my name.  Why can’t I just be an accountant and be happy with that?  I want the emptiness to disappear.  I want enough money to live comfortably.  How can I have both?

Recently, in an attempt to fill the void, I asked a few of my friends to help me produce a short film.  Like the silly, overeager, crazy girl that I am- I decided to write, direct and star in this movie.  Wearing multiple hats proved to be quite difficult and even resulted in a minor breakdown (tears included) but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.  I love the feeling of creating something.  I love putting a smile on someone’s face or making them think of something that they hadn’t before or just making them feel at all.  Would anybody like to pay me for that?  Please?  I’ll buy you a pony!  (The invisible kind…the kind pretend money can buy).

The world would be a better place if we all loved our jobs but we don’t live in a utopia and unfortunately, that is just not the case.  A combination of hard work and a lot of luck will get you to where you need to be but what work should I focus on?  Do I take the time to focus on finding a decent job?  The job that will give me security?  Or do I struggle with a minimum wage job and spend my efforts creating art?  “Creating art”, it just sounds so pretentious.  That’s what we artists do.  We sound pretentious.  Sound pretentious.  Some of us are, but not all.  We may use different words than others, but what profession doesn’t have its own jargon?  Don’t judge us for wanting to make you smile.  Don’t judge us for working menial jobs while we bust our asses to give you something to look forward to after your “steady job”.  Take a second and consider the other side.  Go watch a movie, see a show, listen to music and consider that it took effort to create that for you.  Don’t judge me because only one thing can complete me.  At least I know what’s missing in my life.  All I need now is the courage to give into the bite.

A scene from 'Happy Hour', my latest creation. 🙂
One of my favorite artists, Monet

**I can be a writer/director/actor and still wear the labcoat right?  That’s not pretentious at all….

It’s Christmas!! Wait…what do you mean “not yet”?

Two days before Halloween we had our first snow fall of the season.  The wrong season, but ya know what?  I like it.  I have taken it as my very own personal sign that for this year, if only this one year, it is ok to begin celebrating Christmas two months in advance.  I guess that sounds like a long time once you put a number to it but again I say, I like it.  As I sit here listening to my Christmas music and drinking my Vanilla Chai Tea with snow on the ground outside my window, I can’t help but feel that this is right.  This year, the holiday season began in October.

As a child, we all know that Christmas elicits a feeling like no other.  The holiday season brings joy unmatched by the preceding year.  Smiles abound; eggnog and apple cider stock the fridge and cookies and cakes litter the cabinets while tinsel, garland, and sparkling lights make the world a little brighter this time of year.  Christmas is the only holiday that can bring a tear to my eye; tears filled with happiness that maybe, just maybe, this year…I can feel like a kid again.

Over the years, that feeling, that special feeling all its own has slowly vanished.  I’ve tried so hard to hold onto and yet it slipped through my fingers.  Perhaps that is to be expected as years go by.  With age comes a never-ending sense of emptiness?  That can’t be right.  So why is it that my Christmas spirit has disappeared?  The past few years have not been the hardest of times but neither have they been the easiest.  Stress and lack of time won out over Christmas joy.  What with final exams, part-time jobs, and full-time jobs, Christmas slips by in just one day filled with food and presents.  No fair!  I don’t want one day of Christmas, I want 25!  (Or in this case, 59!)  As a child, it is the anticipation of Santa’s arrival and a tree surrounded by presents that leaves us feeling so excited.  As an adult, it is the anticipation of credit card bills after yet another round of Christmas shopping that leaves us much more stressed and much less excited.  With adulthood comes stress, yada yada yada.  This year, I will do my best not to stress  OR if I do stress near the days leading up to Christmas, at least I will have celebrated the season for one month in advance.  Clever thinking, I know.  This girl is ahead of the game!

No matter what, I won’t let all those nay-sayers get me down.  To those people who say it’s “pathetic”, “disgusting”, or “annoying” to listen to Christmas tunes before Thanksgiving, I say get over yourselves.  Then I will blast “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” in the hopes that they can take a hint.  No one is taking Christmas from me this year!  I’m even going to write a Christmas List, for old times’ sake.  Take that, November!

Dear Santa,

Hi Santa!!  I know think I’ve been a pretty good girl this year (but I’ll let you be the judge).  I wanted to send you a nice little letter with a few things that I would like for Christmas.  Don’t feel obligated or anything.  I mean, I know you’ve got a lot going on, delivering presents all over the world in one night and all.  And I hear the reindeer have been a little snippy lately so…I hope the stress hasn’t got you down!  If you have the time, I would like:

*A sense of security.  (Whether it be a full-time salaried position, or just some ultimate calm that gives me peace-of-mind. It would be greatly appreciated).

*I would like to stop feeling exhausted all day long and rise out of this slump sooner than later.

*I would like for people in this world to be a little more accepting.  Convince them to take the time to walk in someone else’s shoes before they judge them?  (Use your smooth-talking skills, Santa.  You got this!)

*Aaaaand I also want…tickets to a Michael Buble Concert, Bunny Slippers, New Earrings, tickets to a Broadway show, a newly painted bedroom, a new TV, money, and oh I don’t know..why don’t we throw in a teacup pig too.  ( I really want the teacup pig).

I know it’s a lot to ask for, Santa but I’ve been such a good little girl (kinda, sorta, maybe)!!!  These things are in order of importance so it’s cool if you just stick to the first one. 🙂

Merry Christmas, Santa!

P.S-  Tell Rudolph I said “whaddup.” 🙂