Posted in Books, Cats, Fibromyalgia, Movies, Televison, Uncategorized

Next Time, You Bring The Cookies

1fibro5My brain is often at war with my body.
I want to do more. More! More! Yes, on days like this my brain sounds like a strange combination of yearning romance novel heroine and petulant child.
Such is the hidden world of Fibromyalgia.

My body dragged itself out of bed to start another day. Not really sure why I have a bed sometimes, but at least it’s there for rest and decoration. I also once again failed to get the license number of the Mack Truck that hit me while I was sleeping.
With FMS another day means more pain, fatigue, frustration, disappointment, doubters and just more of less.

I don’t expect anyone who doesn’t live with Fibromyalgia to understand it. I don’t have cancer, that doesn’t mean I can’t have empathy and understanding for those that do. Or ALS, MS, CP, Diabetes, Autism, depression, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, etc.
Doesn’t mean I can’t understand a man because I’m not a man.
Or the rich because I’m not rich.
As human beings we have a wealth of empathy, understanding, and compassion available to us at any time.

I get some people think Fibromyalgia is made up by lazy or unmotivated people. Ok, why do doctors and other professionals go along with it, what’s in it for them? They have more than enough patients, unfortunately cancer alone keeps them pretty busy.

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1sm27So it hasn’t been my day, my week, my month, or even my year, but I do know that laughter is truly the best medicine so I thought today was a good day to review Conversations with Steve Martin edited by Robert E. Kapsis (University Press of Mississippi). Thank you Netgalley.com for letting me borrow this ARC copy, available in stores early September 2014.

I’ve already had many conversations with Mr. Martin in the last 35 years – usually he’s wearing an arrow through his head or bunny ears, or a balloon hat, playing his banjo, getting Happy Feet, dressed in a King Tut outfit, and/or eating tiny chocolate cookies while juggling small cats. No cats were harmed in my fantasy conversations with Steve Martin.

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Conversations with Steve Martin highlights Martin‘s contributions not only as a comedian, but as a writer, musician, artist, and free-thinker through a series of interviews and profiles. It’s sort of a living eulogy of Martin’s rollercoaster career over the past 4 decades.

Steve Martin has thrilled and disappointed audiences for decades with his ever-changing style, from eccentric, incongruous, and wacky to mature to sinister to bizarre to mellow.

As much as I’ve 1sm20enjoyed some of his later work, I sometimes miss the wild and crazy guy, the Cruel Shoes, King Tut, Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid, The Jerk, The Man With Two Brains https://yadadarcyyada.com/2013/11/27/the-man-with-two-brains/ and more.
That being said, I’m so glad he moved on and didn’t get stuck.

If you’re a Steve Martin fan this latest book is ubercool, if you’re not, well, excuuuuuuuse me!

You can read, watch or have pretend conversations with Steve Martin or maybe really pretend 140 characters or less magical moments on Twitter @SteveMartinToGo

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Carl Reiner may have said it best, “His strength, as an actor, I’ve found, is his beautiful body,” Carl Reiner said jokingly. “His weakness is too much hair on his body.”

Laughter may not fix all the world’s problems, but it sure does know how to make them seem less dire.

I think tonight will be a Steve Martin movie night.

Thank you Mr. Martin for another lovely conversation, next time, you bring the cookies.

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Posted in Autism, Books, Uncategorized

Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock

1asp16I think it’s tragic that people have so many prejudices, especially about things they don’t understand. They don’t know what they’re missing.

Have you even known someone with: ALS, MS, Parkinson’s Disease, CP, Alzheimer’s, Tetanus, Pinched nerve, meningitis, Huntington’s Disease, Migraines, Epilepsy, Polio, stroke, or any of the other neurological disorder?

Would you tell someone who’d suffered a stroke to just talk properly? Unlikely.

Would you tell someone with ALS to stop being so lazy? No way.

Tell someone with Alzheimer’s they could remember if they just tried harder? Doubtful.

Someone with Parkinson’s to stop shaking, that they were just trying to get attention? Improbable.

Yet people with Autism are constantly told to grow up, smarten up, man up, stop being so lazy. People scoff, blame, bully, abuse, mock, make jokes, call names, etc.
Autism is a neurological condition just like any other. They have as much control over how their brain works as any other neurological disorder.

Hopefully someday Asperger’s won’t even be a diagnosis, people will start to respect Neurodiversity.
Until then, they need help and one of the best places to start is OASIS (Online Asperger Syndrome Information and Support), http://www.aspergersyndrome.org/ where I admit I’m somewhat of a lurker, as I am on most Asperger’s and Autism sites. There to find information and resources for my son, I don’t always feel like plunging into the fray myself. At least OASIS is a respectful site, not prone to the relentless bickering, squabbling, arguing, and bullying to which some Autism sites fall prey.1asp15

I wish more of the Autism community could pull together, avoid the infighting, and work toward a common goal of helping those with Autism live better lives.

I was lucky enough to borrow an ARC copy from Netgalley.com of Asperger Syndrome: The OASIS Guide by Patricia Romanowski Bashe, 3rd Edition, published by Harmony Books/Crown Publishing available October 14, 2014.
When my son was diagnosed with Asperger’s years ago there was little information, now there’s a lot of misinformation, but thankfully there are sites and books like OASIS. Full of incredible, insightful inspiration, advice, and more, this comprehensive guide can help put things into perspective when your head is swirling.
A refuge on those days when you just feel like crying.

It seems lately stated or unstated Asperger’s characters are all over TV, in movies, and in books, with varying degrees of success and respect:

1asp6Community, House, Star Trek, Doctor Who, The Big Bang Theory, Sherlock, Elementary,

Boston Legal, Bones, The Bridge, Skins, ReGenesis, Grey’s Anatomy, Silicon Valley,

 curious incident of the dog in the night-time,  Edward Scissorhands,

Adam, Monk, Hannibal, Temple Grandin, 24, Triggers, Mercury Rising, Parenthood, 

Fringe, Alphas, Doc Martin, Dear John, 1asp9 House Rules, Criminal Minds, P.S. I Love You,

Rain Man, Salmon Fishing in Yemen, CSI, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,

Mozart and the Whale, My Name is Khan, Snow Cake, Touch, Somersault,

and more.

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Most often showcased as charming, eccentric, funny, cute, and usually brilliant Nerds or Geeks who have great jobs, loyal and caring family and friends, etc.
Unfortunately the prognosis is not often that optimistic.
I can’t emphasize enough that this is a debilitating disorder, not entertainment.
Not  functioning is not charming.
Not being able to keep a job or friends isn’t cute.
Getting into difficulties or danger because you can’t comprehend situations is not brilliant.
Being left out, mocked, teased, bullied, or hurt is not funny.
Being medicated or hospitalized or jailed is not eccentric.
Struggling all day, every day to even grasp some of the world around them isn’t amazing.
It may make for good entertainment, but in real life, people have to live with the consequences.

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Posted in Books, Movies, Televison, Uncategorized

Lauren Bacall: Classy and Sassy To The End

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Some people may not have even notice Lauren Bacall’s passing.

There’s certainly a lot going on in the world, various humanitarian crisis, in Syria, Iraq, Gaza; Ebola virus in Africa; the Trojan trucks drama; economic and environmental issues; war; Ferguson; climate change wrecking havoc with our weather; the loss of Robin Williams, and so much more. There are probably some that already thought Lauren Bacall had already died.

Old Hollywood had a glamor that has been difficult to replicate. Those days, those movies were anything but perfect yet they still stand out as fascinating and timeless.

Lauren Bacall (Betty Joan Perske) was iconic for many reasons. Was it “The Look”? The Look apparently came from nerves, she always said the only way she could stop from shaking was to put her head down and look up at Bogie, who knows if that’s true, but it’s a cool story. Her beauty? Her sultry voice? Her intrigue? Being married to Humphrey Bogart? Maybe a combination?

1bacall12I’m a Humphrey Bogart fan. I’ve watched Casablanca too many times to be healthy.
Bogart and I had so much in common.
Our love of chess.
We were honest, to a fault.
Then I found out he was married.
Then I found out he’d been dead for years before I was even born.
These facts tend to put a bit of a damper on even an imaginary red-hot romance.

I’m not sure of Bogart was my first movie boyfriend, but he’s still in my top 10.

The much-lauded relationship between Bogie and Bacall (Maybe their celebrity couple name could be: Bocall or Bagie) always left me thinking, yes, I’m sure it was the romance of the century, a love that would endure through time and space, but he was married when he started their relationship. That’s a tad smarmy.

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Lauren Bacall w1bacall14as not only a unique beauty, she had brains, style, talent, and integrity (aside from being the other woman).

Her career, from model to leading lady to character actress spanned decades and though times had changed, she stayed classy and sassy.

I would be hard-pressed to name my favourite Lauren Bacall work, although Key Largo springs to mind.
Also liked: How To Marry A Millionaire (with Marilyn Monroe; although clearly I didn’t take the advice), Dark Passage, Sex and the Single Girl, Written on the Wind, The Walker, The Shootist, Misery, The Sopranos, Dogville, To Have and To Have Not, and she’s brilliant in The Mirror Has Two Faces.

This icon managed to stay relevant – my teenage son knows her from Howl’s Moving Castle and Family Guy (12th episode of 12th season; 222nd episode); not my favourite episode, not her fault, the story was choppy; the subplot with Stewie and Brian was amusing.

So from thrilling Hollywood goddess in the 40s all the way to Family Guy in 2014 and so much in between.

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I love classic movies. What they lack in political correctness they make up for in style, witty dialogue, cinematography, direction, and of course, the actors.

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“I think your whole life shows in your face
and you should be proud of that.”
~Lauren Bacall
1924-2014

 

 

 

Posted in Movies, Televison, Uncategorized

Robin Williams: His Last Laugh

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/Suicide isn’t a laughing matter. Neither is depression.

Have we lost the ability to see that line between genuinely mourning the loss of someone and using it to gain attention for ourselves?

Where to begin? The media are too obvious, they’re a well-oiled exploitation machine.

Social media is too often the Land of Shallow, where pictures, platitudes, Slacktivism, jokes, and memes are welcome, but anything of substance is frequently ignored or seen as annoying.

Yet it’s the memorials that confuse me the most.
What does wasting money on flowers, balloons, teddy bears and candles do?
Does it bring those lost back?
Does it stop the next accident, murder, or suicide?
No. It just mildews.
What a terrible waste.

Maybe it’s a form of pain behaviour. People need to show how much they care, show that they’re in pain.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

  • Take the money you would spend on items for a memorial and donate it to those in need.
  • Help someone who suffers from mental illness get help or support.
  • Help someone undergoing cancer or other treatments with extra expenses.
  • Help society’s most vulnerable get enough food, shelter, dental care, eye glasses, medicine.
  • Do something useful. Wouldn’t that show you care? Ease your pain?

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

Robin Williams chose to leave this world. I expect this loss is felt deeply by his family and friends, and to a lesser degree, by his fans.
If you’re actually upset about this, help someone who is struggling with depression, anxiety, PTSD, addiction, and other forms of mental illness.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

Be kind.

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Maybe we wouldn’t need Suicide Hotlines or Kids Helplines or so many other band-aids if people would stop making so many hurts.

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Be there to listen to someone (hint, turn off your cellphone while listening; seeing your head bent over your phone as you absently say uh-huh at maybe the right spots will probably just remind them of how messed up the world is).
Take the time to be in the moment.

I’ve been a fan of Robin Williams since I saw him as Mork (first on Happy Days then on Mork and Mindy).
I liked most of his work, funny or serious or seriously funny.

I was even one of the 10 (that number is an estimate, it might have been an even dozen) people watching The Crazy Ones, before it was cancelled.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

It’s a distressinhttps://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/g incongruity that many comedians use humour as a mask, a shield, a façade…That while they are making us laugh, making us forget our worries, making us remember that life is worth living they are haunted by inner demons.

Robin Williams was a frenzied mastermind of comedy, or sometimes a serene, gentle man, or an alien, a genie, batty bat, toymaker, spinach-eating strongman, hologram, penguin, robot, a scientist, DJ, doctor, wax figure, dreamer, camper, dad, soldier, psychologist, or whatever he needed to be; he was an actor, an entertainer.

We watch people on screens and think we know them. We don’t.
We don’t know what is in their heart, in their minds.
We don’t know what haunts them, or drives them, sometimes they don’t even know themselves.

It is sad when talent is lost, but instead of fake monuments that will die, or mold, or rot, why not do something that will help people, not just give you a chance to be on TV, something to talk about or post on social media.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

I know it’s not popular, but do something real (not reality TV real but real real) and meaningful.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/08/12/robin-williams-his-last-laugh/

Posted in Books, Christmas, Family, Parenting, Televison

I Miss Saturday Morning Cartoons

1bull18I loved Saturday morning cartoons and other programs as a child…yeah, that’s it, only as a child.

I even willingly (more or less) went to bed Friday nights so I could get up early to watch cartoons like:
Bugs Bunny/Roadrunner Hour,

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Scooby-Doo, Yogi Bear (hey Boo-Boo!), Space Ghost,
Jabberjaw, The Banana Splits, The Pink Panther Show, The Jetsons, The Flintstones,

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1bull8Josie and the Pussycats (ok, they went to outer space;
smart, getting a bigger audience share), Shazam!,
Superfriends, Batman, Superman, Grape Ape,
Fantastic Four,
various Captain Caveman,
Harlem Globetrotters, Schoolhouse Rock,  
The Addams Family (the ill-fated cartoon version),
Return of the Planet of the Apes, Land of the Lost,
The New Shmoo, The New Adventures of Gilligan,

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Godzilla (with Godzooky), Spiderman, Smurfs, Ewoks,
Star Trek (sigh, yes, boldly going into cartoons),
Cucumber Club (I was a member), Blackstar,
Inch High Private Eye, Fat Albert, Speed Racer,
Hilarious House of Frightenstein, Tom and Jerry,
The Banana Splits, Underdog, H.R. Puff’n’Stuff,
Rocky and Bullwinkle, Dudley Do-Right, Droopy Dog,

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Mighty Mouse, Hong Kong Phooey (before political correctness),
and probably more that I can’t think of off the top of my head.

Just so you understand how sad this is, I can still sing all the words to all these theme songs.

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A graphic novel like Rocky and Bullwinkle takes me back to a simpler time. I know how old that makes me sound, but there it is.

Even as I read Rocky and Bullwinkle #1: The Psychic Sidekick by Roger Langridge (IDW Publishing/Diamond Book Distributors), I marvelled at the blatant anti-Soviet/Russian sentiment and thought, hmmm, I see why it’s making a comeback. Amuse children and adults, but wait, there’s more, also a propaganda tool! While not quite as funny as I remembered, but both R&B and Dudley Do-Right are still amusing in a cheesy way. Sometimes when they recycle these oldies but goodies they ruin them by modernizing or making them too politically correct, but no squirrel and moose are just as old school silly, yahoo!

1bull1So when did Saturday morning cartoons die and why?
VCRs then other recording devices, cable, internet, video games, etc. were the beginning.

Animation changed, more as a business, with little art involved.

Needing children to be ‘busy’ every minute of their day was a big factor. Pushing for more ‘quality’ family time that involved paid activities, traveling, etc. another.

1bull29When I was young, quality time with my parents came later in the day, after they had slept in – their reward for a long work week.
My brother and I foraged for food, cereal or toast, leftover soup or spaghetti, if you were lucky, cold pizza from the night before. There were simple rules to Saturday morning: try to be quiet (I’m sure my brother and I were awesome at this rule) and don’t make a mess (if you do, clean it up). I think it taught my brother and I independence, and we enjoyed the time together.

There have been other changes in society. The divorce rate has increased significantly since then and now many children live between homes.
More recreational sports now. Anything else?

There are still many cartoons, but available anytime…

I kind of miss the days when you saw The Grinch and Charlie Brown’s Christmas once a year at Christmas, and cartoons only on Saturday morning.

Life should have seemed limited, but instead we just felt lucky to see them, not entitled.

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Posted in Autism, Cats, Family, Parenting, Uncategorized

It’s A Cat’s World…Adjust

It’s World Cat Day and I think that’s a tad unfair, isn’t everyday Cat Day, well, at least they think so.1cat20

I don’t currently share my home with any feline characters unless I count my son who has Asperger’s (see earlier post, https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/07/27/all-cats-have-asperger-syndrome/ ), but I’ve had a lot of experience in their world.

My friend George (loved Curious George) was pure black except for a white bib and apron. George liked to sit on the front porch, even more on Halloween where he got maximum effect. He lost one half of an ear being out in the cold; we lived in Coniston, near Sudbury, it was very cold at times. In those days most cats were outdoor cats, this also led to us calling his name or saying, bad George which got a hearty laugh from my Grandfather because his brother, George lived right across the street.

Other cat friends?

Candace, regrettably insane; eventually needed little kitty pills to keep her calm (those were sooooo much fun to give her). My Mom let my Dad take me to the SPCA to find a kitten. We were two big saps who came home with a tiny runt kitten who needed to be fed with an eye dropper for days and the SPCA said they would replace her when she passed away. I didn’t want her replaced, I loved her. Candace lived 17 years. I don’t think she had many other fans.

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Note how we picked a cat to match the groovy 70s carpet and furniture.

We had Tanis (yes, my Raiders of the Lost Ark phase, which I’m sort of still in) who my Mom (the only one of the family who professes not to be a cat person), saved when someone threw it out of a car. We couldn’t keep her because of Candace, er, aforementioned krazy kitty. We found her a good home.

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There was also Xena and Luna who were lovely. Luna had to find a new home because she decided she wanted to play with my son as a baby, just his head. And Xena, her sister had to find another home when I found out my son had Asthma.

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No cats since.

If you do get a kitten or cat, please, adopt from an animal shelter or rescue; or family or friend.

Our extended family has had so many beautiful cats over the years, we don’t think of them as pets so much as companions.
They think of us as staff.

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Posted in Autism, Books, Christmas, Cooking, Environment, Family, Fibromyalgia, Food, Holidays, Internet, Jane Austen, Movies, Music, Parenting, Political, Televison, Uncategorized, Weight, Zombies

My 1 Year Blogaversary!

1birthday10August 8, 2013 wow, that seems like a lifetime ago.

That blog post was, Fibromyalgia is a  Four Letter Word (it still is).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2013/08/08/fibromyalgia-is-a-four-letter-word/

Since then I’ve made a lot of mistakes, did I say a lot I meant a ton, or perhaps a tad more; probably said a lot of things people don’t agree with; and had some wanting-to-pull-my-hair-out moments, no worries, it’s still there, more or less.

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I’ve learned a lot. Had some revelations about people I thought would be supportive, turns they weren’t, and still aren’t.

I’ll take it as a life lesson.

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Plenty more people have been extremely supportive.
Thank you to family and friends, those who have pressed like, or shared, or reblogged, or followed, or subscribed, tweeted and retweeted, given me awards, or a combination. It means more than you’ll ever know, really.

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I have 1birthday6‘virtually’ met some awesome people who are kind, supportive, funny, helpful, generous, hopeful, caring, and have mind-blowing things to say and they share it. Thank you.

This year has opened up new portals for me.

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I’m reading books I might never have read, learned things I didn’t know my brain could learn, but most of all it’s given me hope that maybe I can be more, it’s given me a glimpse of me, a me that I sometimes fear is gone forever.

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So please join me for this virtual celebration of my 1st Blogaversary or Blogversary or maybe it’s a blogbirthday!

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Drop by and say hi, read some of my older posts, apparently there are like 450 of them, hey, I did warn you with the tagline, Vague Meanderings of the Broke and Obscure.

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Have a slice of virtual cake, wear a silly hat and join me for another year of who knows what!!!

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