Posts filed under ‘Fond Memories’
My other blog, Spanish Phrase of the Day, was inspired by my Cuban heritage. My grandparents emigrated from Cuba in the early 1960s and created a wonderful life here in the United States.
My grandmother passed away today at age 94. Her husband died in 1999, so it is nice to know that they are together again. I don’t usually get too personal on SPOTD, but I did write about her and wanted to link to it here.
One of my son’s favorite movies is The Incredibles. He fancies himself a speedster like Dash and loves to demonstrate how his little legs can move.
One of the themes in the film is how everyone loses when people are not allowed to be their best selves. It is a philosophical sibling in some ways to Atlas Shrugged.
The trend towards a toothless and bland populace may be traced back to the early 1980′s, with toys and films that affected an entire generation. From commentator Eric Snider-
In the 1980s, the Care Bears were a major contributor to the wussification of America. Children who once roamed the streets barefoot, playing with broken glass and poking dogs with sticks, were now taught to share their feelings and to care about people. Fun cartoons like G.I. Joe reminded kids how satisfying it is to kill others; lame cartoons like The Care Bears said, “Let’s all sit around and talk about our hopes and dreams!” And what were the consequences? Everyone born since about 1975 thinks they’re “special” and “important” and “unique,” when in fact most of them are “ordinary” and “useless.” Thanks a heap, Care Bears.
The Care Bears Movie is a disturbing glimpse into an Orwellian future where caring reigns supreme and good old-fashioned misanthropy is forbidden. The Care Bears — emotionless, ambisexual drones who frolic nakedly in the clouds and giggle in a most unsettling fashion — rule Earth with an iron, furry fist, spying on citizens in a search for the slightest hint of uncaring. Each Care Bear is named according to its personality: Friend Bear, Cheer Bear, Tenderheart Bear, Pansy Bear, Wuss Bear, Big Fat Crybaby Bear, etc. There’s also the gloomy Grumpy Bear, who is clearly a genetic defect and must be looked upon with pity and loathing by the others of his species.
Much deep reflection is prompted by this pop culture cancer. It does make one wonder- What kind of bear would one be?
I hope none at all. Maybe the hunter who shoots the bear and makes a rug.
I liked this retrospective on the now-30 year-old Sony Walkman. Check out this page to see more of that first, brave model. It was very expensive, at over $500 inflation-adjusted dollars!
I remember borrowing my dad’s enormous SPORTS Walkman. Not only did it play cassette tapes, but it also had an FM Tuner.
Still, for a long time, the Walkman was the most practical and attainable personal musical device. I think I owned this model, near the APEX of Walkman technology, enjoying Kris Kross and other great music.
Happy Birthday Walkman!
JL and I were guests at a wonderful wedding this weekend. As a male, I dreaded the thought of attending said wedding. However, much good came of the event. Friday evening we were special guests at the rehearsal dinner hosted at Maggiano’s Little Italy. We mixed and mingled for about an hour before dinner and one guest, a man, caught my eye.
He was seated at the table diagonal ours so I could stare at him throughout the meal. Then, around the entree, it hit me. I didn’t know if I should say anything, at the risk of embarrassing myself. At first I thought of mentioning something to the guest next to me, as a sort of trial balloon. Instead, I swallowed my pride, leaned over to my wife and said, “That guy looks like he could be my brother.” Since she can’t/doesn’t want to hear anything I say, she responded, “He doesn’t look like Jon.” So I spelled it out, “He looks just like me. I haven’t been able to take my eyes off him all night.”
“You’re right,” she shouted. I was fascinated and totally freaked out.
JL raced over to his table and shared my thoughts with his entire table, he sort of agreed but was definitely uncomfortable.
Then, I turned to the side and it hit him too, just like Haley Mills, or Lindsay Lohan for you kids.
After dinner, we started to talk and things got weirder. We really hit it off. My twin is like 7 years younger than me, but he’s majoring in Economics and we talked about Financial Econ till the sun came up. Well, not quite, but we could have. Needless to say, a little more “me” was all the weekend needed. I had a great time, I swept myself off my feet. As we parted ways in the hotel Saturday night I said, “There goes one handsome guy.”
*Parent Trap photo from Amazon.com.
Pardon me for pimping my own blog, but I don’t think you’ll mind.
Share your expectations on the other side (or here).
I had the pleasure of spending some time with my cousin the last couple of days, whom we will hitherto refer to as C-dub. C-dub is a friend of JL’s from school, and a LIFELONG friend of Joe Miller. This story never fails to amaze me. It also makes me want to invest in pharmaceutical companies.
C-dub was dating this young chippy (whom I never met as I was already in Big Oil) but JL and Joe Miller both had the pleasure. The relationship lasted about 7 months, but C-dub wasn’t that into it, so Chippy broke up with him. It happens. Nothing crazy yet.
Until one week later, in the periodicals section of the library, C-dub sees Chippy, and approaches her to say hello (and basically confirm that they are going to still be friends). He never got to that question. Chippy YELLS in the library, “STOP TRASHING MY NAME TO EVERYONE!” and storms out. Eyes are all on C-dub, as they try to figure out what he possibly did to this quite vocal girl. C-dub gets out to follow her, and she walks back in, and pulls C-dub between the book shelves and starts, what may be, the most classic breakup rant of all time: “I HATE YOU! I HATE YOUR FACE! I HATE YOUR VOICE! I NEVER LOVED YOU! I’VE BEEN HANGING OUT WITH ALL THESE OTHER GUYS THIS PAST WEEK AND AM HAVING WAY MORE FUN WITH THEM THAN I EVER HAD WITH YOU!” And this went on for 3-5 minutes, when C-Dub finally said, “Yeah, I’ve been hanging out with other girls this week and feel the same way.” So she goes to SLAP him. The one and only time a girl has tried to slap C-Dub, and he PROUDLY blocked it (genetically our family is quite gifted. We have catlike reflexes). The block made her furious and she stormed off.
One week later, he sees her on campus, Chippy approaches him and says, “You know why I’m looking at your crotch?” C-dub can’t believe what he’s hearing… she continues, “BECAUSE I WANT TO KICK IT!” Oh man, who else can I use this most CLASSIC line on? My old landlord? Lots of people from Big Oil, naturally.
And then, a few days later, he sees her outside of the biology building and at this point, she has heard that when C-dub was contemplating the demise of their relationship, he made a list of reasons to break up. She wanted this list and was CONVINCED that it was in a binder in C-Dub’s back-pack. So all 5’2″ of her JUMPS on C-dub’s back, trying to BODY TACKLE HIM to get the backpack, hence the piece of paper, but C-dub does NOT fall to the ground, and her whole psychotic campus body-tackle attempt was all for naught.
I reminded C-dub that the college years are when most mental illness sets in. Regardless, this girl has something the rest of us will NEVER have: kahones enough to tell a man she’s looking at his crotch because she wants to kick it.
Posted by LeMare
Some snippets from the Hollywood mission field:
Trying to stay up on pop culture: I am sure that we have all seen posters for Beowulf! Guilder’s favorite book, and possibly mine after scripture. Is it indeed R? It may be R, just likeshould have been with some pretty objectionalbe lyrics, such as “It must have been my wicked childhood” and scenes of great intensity and dancing.
A touch of celebrity: I should mention that‘s personal assistant is in my Relief society.
Remembrances of home: The other day I was wielding my pink ruler around my head like a battle axe to frighten my companions, and I recalled a time when [little sister] told [Dad] that her “Female” friends were coming to pick her up. She tried to skulk out the door to get in to a car with two MALE friends, and [Dad] called her on it: “Uh, Nick, how did your two girl friends become boys? how does that happen?” He then proceeded to stand in the doorway resting his masculine frame on a sword, plastic covered, but a sword nonetheless, until the scallywags reversed theirand left. Ha!
Picturing her departure: i should like to take this opportunity to discuss my voyage home. i have now decided that I shall walk home, in bonnet, just as the pioneers. Just kidding. If Dill is up for it, it would be nice to be met with a pressed plush jumpsuit, a Winnebago (or Airstream) and‘s greatest hits. i shall provide the snacks and sandwiches. The Mormon Trek Backwards Revisited shall begin at the Trump Gold Course (I know one of the less-active workers). Anyway, frivolous details, just know that I shall be greatly disappointed if I end off on an airplane. Just know that when a mohawked sister appears on your doorstep in a mustard -toned plush suit on, you’ll know it’s me.
Requests to the outside world: Would you be so kind as to send more manny pictures to me, of the process? My companions keep me up at night with their questions. The latest phase of the healing process is “Sister Hollywood’s Story Time” during which period I tell stories, one was about Manny, and the sisters need more of a visual than your website print out.
An email exerpt from JL to LeMare and Joe Miller, subject “Wondrous Sighting”:
Well what to my wondrous eyes should occur but a Joe Miller sighting in Sister Hollywood’s weekly email:
“so….before the meeting began, I saw a Caucasian walking towards me with a smeed look upon his brow, and it took me about 1.5 seconds to realize that Joe Miller was walking straight towards me. Joe Miller! The dear friend of [LeMare], roommate to Beverly at uni. I got to meet his wife, Amy, and their SON Joshua, who had apparently hit his Father in a no-no spot to get out of the Chapel during Sacrament Meeting; a wild and rambunctious thing indeed, and Joshua is no different! Joe informed me that he enjoyed reading over snippets on a web site? what the devil?”
Joe, did you think, “There goes a girl who looks like Manny?”
The jig is up. Joe Miller let the cat out of the bag that JL has been divulging her sister’s private letters over cyberspace. IRF truly is a small world, after all!
The second part in a series of correspondence received from a (sister)/sister missionary in L.A., who is bound to become a stalwart contributor to IRF upon her return home in February 2008.
From an e-mail entitled, “Answer: What is the Best Preparation Day of my Rumpled Life?”
Today I asked Alex Trebec, of Jeopardy, a question that stumped him, then he gave me an answer, warmed up to me and shot me a smile.
Today my zone went to Jeopardy (a connection from a Hollywood Ward member). i had the time of my life. We watched three thrity-minute segments get made that will air December 17th. The contestants were fascinating, one must pass a lengthy test to even be able to get onto the show. We were VIP guests, so we got front and center seats. I will most definitely be on television. During down-time, we were encouraged to ask Alec questions. he enjoys some light mingling with his guests. We were warned not to answer questions out loud, by Jonny (picture an elderly, tucked, man in a red button down underneath a beige satin jacket which read Johhnny on the front, and Jeopardy on the back, no doubt a clever Christmas cast gift for him from the 80s). If any of us spoke, they would have to pick another question. Apparently Alex Trebec does not like to be asked how old he is (he’s been tucked…), or how much money he makes. Soooo… OTHER than that, we could ask him any question.
Alex waltzed over to us, looked at us with confusion (we had removed our name tags) and said, “You’re from an organization. Let me see if I can guess…Hmm. Mormon missionaries!” Alex, mind you, has a very dry sense of humor. The kind of creativity that flows from the rock of manic depression. One woman asked him, “How do you stay so fit!?” Response? I drink. Another guest asked, “Why did you shave your mustache?” “I felt like it. Just like my Mother.” Alec’s tongue is sharper than the guillotine! I thought I better not get my rumpled fingers near his blade!
A few segments later, i mustered up some courage to ask a question. I proceeded to ask, “Which modern invention do you feel we would be better off without?” Alex looked like he had just been doused with a super soaker water gun. He went speechless. The audience fell dead silent. He started to pace, back turned to the crowd. “Hhhhmmm,” he pondered. “I have never even considered such a thing…” He paused over the crew table and said “Well, having two teenagers I would say the cell phone, but I see its necessity. Hmmm.” After a few more awkward seconds (which in TV time is about an hour), he said “I’ll have to think about it and I’ll let you know before the end of the day.” Another segment later, Alex went to his private quarters for a wardrobe change, and I knew, serious contemplation. My missionary friend turned around and said, “You stumped Alex Trebec!”
Segments more passed, he walked back tot the crowd to answer more questions, shoot some more people down, then before turning to the stage he looked me dead in the eye. I slightly ascended heavensward in my seat. He then flipped around, like a young sassy super model taking her first turn on the catwalk, looked at me and said, “The electric can opener.” He coyly smiled like a fourteen year old girl in her first pair of high heels walking past construction workers.
i raised my soft arm and pointed straight to him. He said, “My house has had an electric can opener built in to the kitchen for seventeen years, and it has never worked. I have to use the old hand job, the manual.”
Later on in the show Alex asked us some useless questions about “the gold man on top of the Temple” and the price of BYU tuition. Then I shot him another question. i asked him which career he would pick for his teenagers. More contemplation. he then told me that Emily, 17 has a knack for design, she’s organized, she would make a good architect, and Matthew, 16, has none of those things, but he is build like a rock. He had encouraged him to be a telemarketer, so that he could experience what it feels like to have someone hang up on you over dinner. (“Serve a mission!” I thought quietly.)
*The following is an unsolicited guest post from a certain sister missionary in the California Los Angeles Mission. These excerpts come from selected emails over the last year she’s been serving.
Dill Tweedy is going to be jealous, but yes I saw Goldie Hawn over lunch last Wednesday after a trip to the Temple which I shall never forget. Her arms are taut, but softer in a way that a 60-something’s arms must be. I heard her say “Exactly.” Her voice still rings with chutzpah and force. She’s still got it everybody.
Anywho, for the 4th, the Mexicans went wild! Another reason to drink, play loud mariachi and fire to boot! Fireworks are actually illegal. We just had a stirring lesson this past Sunday in Relief Society about Integrity (ie honesty). The teacher acted like we were about to delve in to something to give us shame, like gossip. She said “This is a hard subject, so we are going to read straight out of the manual.” Note: This task is difficult seeing as literally four people in the rama are legal. Everyone else uses false papers, different names at work, and they all drive illegally, and allow their children the same privilege. The class was great. The trouble was the teacher was illegal too, lessening the power of her stirring remarks, “How many of us bought illegal fireworks and used them on the fourth of July?” Oooh.
Doting Younger Elders
i am afraid there is a strange elder who has a bit of a thing for me, as pointed out by my companion. He is always trying to get me to teach him French (hello, we are all learning Spanish right now…). he sat next to me at the Home Town Buffet on Saturday between sessions and I made the mistake of responding to my companion’s prods that I should marry her 19 year-old brother with “Age ain’t nothing but a number.” Which I believe I stole from a rapper. Anywway, the eager young elder quickly wrote this quote down in his planner. Great.
i must dash, but first, i have to tell you the funniest invention that my former district leader taught me: Ghetto cake. You take any boxed cake mix, or bread mix for that matter, mix it with just enough water so that it makes a thick paste that does not slide off of a spoon when tipped downwards. you then microwave the mixture (about 45 seconds for 1/4 c. of ghetto cake). The result is significantly lower calorie (no oil, no egg) cake that is cooked instantly and very easy to make. I thought this would be fabulous at a party. Individual cakes in cups for people, topped with fruit, frosting, whatever. It’s ghetto cake. you do what you want.
A few favorite less-active moments from this past week…A sweet, obese less-active boy toddled in to the front room at the end of our lesson with his Mother to say, “Mom? I was thinkin’, could we get some tater tots? And some SPAM?” This sweet boy is a good 100 over.
Another moment, with our favorite narcissist, Miguel. After another rambunctious lesson with hi and his wife, (We asked him to name something that he likes about her, he couldn’t respond…), I shook his hand and said “Muchas gracias Miguel.” The little gnome said “Muchas gracias Senor.” He then paused and looked away. His wife and my companion were dying laughing, and I said in a raspy tone, “Gracias.” I hope that this is the last time that my gender shall be confused…
i wasn’t goin to share this story, perhaps this is against my better judgment, but it has never happened before and it SHALL NEVER happen again, so I here goes… I often follow my companion in and out of traffic, much like a goose following the head pin goose. Last Friday, my compaion whirred through an interesection, and I got caught behind some cars turning right, wiating for a gang of misled youth to cross.
By the time the light turned green, I sped off, supposing that Hermana had waited at the next intersection. hermana had not. Thrree minutes later I had a funny feeling. We had been on our way to visit Ana Silvia, an investigator. Resting at the side of our local major road, I realized that Hermana was no where to be found, i knew not Ana Silvia’s address. I felt vulnmerable and dark.
I took off down the next street, and pulled over to a phone book. i then realized that I did not know Ana Silvia’s last name. Ten minutes had passed. Where on earth was Hermana? By this time, i was inwardly vomiting, feeling susceptible and disgusting. I panicked, then thought of an appropriate course of action. I decided that the safest thing to do would be to go home, and wait to be contacted. I sped home, entered the apartment, locked the door and called Ana Silvia’s house. Little Angie, Ana Silvia’s daighter informed me that no, Hermana had not arrived.
Twenty minutes later I got a phone call from a ward member who did not speak English. After an exasperating few sentences, he said “Don’t move apartment!” Fifteen minutes later a frzzled Hermana called me. She had stopped, bawling, at a ward member’s house. she had called that President’s Assistants to inform them of my missing state. They told her that they were on their way (to do what I am not sure). hermana told me that she would come home immediately. When she got home we embraced, both terrified and panicked. She called the Assistant to the President and told him what had happened. Elder Allen openly laughed at us, and threatened to put our tale in the Clam Chatter news letter for the whole mission to guffaw over. We were not amused. We both decided that we never ever wanted that to happen again. Hermana now frequently turns around to make sure I am behind her.
The people here call me GRANDE. I am at least six inches taller than everyone in this town. In the mornings we jog. P.S. I have found a companion who will go for 45 minutes with me! Heaven! I jog in a fuschia outfit and when I randomly and aerobically punch the air in front of me, the Hispanics do not know what to do. People openly stare at me.
From Palos Verdes to Maywood, CA
Dad: Expect my bills to now read “McDonalds, A&W, and El Ceviche Loco.” No more Trader Joes. We go to the Logorio.