Tag Archives: film

we watched “poltergeist” the other day. that was a mistake.

The little old lady from Poltergeist.

IT’S NOT CLEAN! IT’S NOT. CLEAN!!!!

you can add this to my list of recent bad decisions, including but not limited to after-lunch hula hooping (i hiccupped every five minutes for about, oh, five hours) and other things of which i am purposely forgetting at the moment which may or may not include getting into a fight with the sushi guy at whole foods.

if you’ve read this blog even one time before, you’d probably guess that i’m not emotionally or physically hearty enough to watch horror movies. i watched jennifer’s body like three years ago for one damn kiss scene but i nearly collapsed from fright in the process. was it worth it? maybe. no.

seven years living in this city has given me some sort of post-traumatic stress disorder–except for the trauma isn’t actually over, it’s ongoing–in that blocks and blocks of boarded-up houses and you know, zombie heroin addicts don’t freak me out, but if i see a shadow in my own house i freak the f*ck out. or  a friggin firework goes off a few blocks over, i think it’s actually a gun and shout HIT THE DECK to holly, who’s sitting calmly on the couch looking at me, smiling as if to say oh baby, i love you. but could you please calm down a little bit maybe sometime? 

i was feeling particularly curious (never a good thing with me) a couple weekends ago. holly was flipping through our endless comcast cable guide and i saw poltergeist was listed.

oh poltergeist! i said, half-kidding. let’s watch that!  and you know what? she turned it on.

watching it was a mistake. i knew it would be a mistake the moment we turned it on and yet…we watched it anyway. even though the “special effects” were 80s and therefore sub-par, it still shook me to the core.

DON’T LAUGH I HAVE A VERY SENSITIVE SYSTEM. PLUS THIS WAS A VERY SCARY MOVIE BACK IN 1982.

shortly afterwards i heard a kid yelling outside (there are a ton of kids where we live) and i was like sh*t! is she stuck inside the tv? WHAT IF THAT IS ACTUALLY NOT A KID OUTSIDE BUT A KID STUCK IN OUR TELEVISION.

i managed to calm down but then i kept thinking about that weird little old lady. the ghost-fighting lady? the one they call in for help when they’re desperate to get the little girl back and rid the house of ghosts? i kept thinking of how she looked and her voice and her huge glasses and the things she said and i was like shit! that was really freaky! she was really freaky! also: why did she say the house was “clean” when it clearly wasn’t?!! if she knows everything there is to know about ghosts wouldn’t she, like, know? that the house wasn’t clean like she said it was? that freaked me out for some reason.

then when it was quiet in the house (our house) i started thinking about all those decayed old bodies, you know, the skeletons? with the hair still on their skulls? popping up in the rain…when the mom’s stuck in that huge hole with all the water in it? while her kids are upstairs, like, being attacked by that big ghost and it’s trying to suck them into the other side? and coffins keep popping up from the ground? and they swing open and bodies fall out?

and the DAMN CLOWN. that damn clown toy in the kids’ room! that is burned into my brain now. i need brain bleach! do they make that??

i also thought about the weird red jello-type stuff that was stuck to the mom and the little girl when they fell through the ceiling. what was that anyway? ew!

and THEN, then i kept hearing the dad shout at the evil boss:

YA MOVED THE HEADSTONES BUT YA DIDN’T MOVE THE BODIES! WHY? WHHHHHYYYYYY?

after it was over, i had to sun myself outside for 15 minutes, which, as you may know, is the minimum amount of sun needed for your body to produce mood-enhancing vitamin D.

i have no memory of the rest of the day because i blacked out. but i’ll tell you what helped me a couple weeks later:

watching st. elmo’s fire. which i had never seen before. it’s a pretty good movie! here are some reasons why:

1. a young rob lowe.

A headshot of actor Rob Lowe in the 80s.

look at that bone structure! gorgeous!

2. a young rob lowe playing the sax!

Rob Lowe playing the saxophone in the hit 80s movie, St. Elmo's Fire.

hey now!

some good 80s sax really calms the soul. and when i say calms the soul, i  actually mean makes you stop thinking about that weird red poltergeist jello sh*t.

3. a young demi moore. again: the bone structure.
4. a young demi moore smoking at her desk. i know, right?! the 80s were crazy!

Demi Moore smoking at her desk in the hit 80s movie, St. Elmo's Fire.

what’cha workin on there demi?! looks important!

5. the nerdy girl GETS THE GUY!

Wendy from the hit 80s movie,  St. Elmo's Fire.

YOU GO GIRL.

6. i googled where it was filmed while i was watching and some of it was filmed at my alma mater, university of maryland, college park. HOLLA CLASS OF 2000! SCHOOL OF JOURNALISM WHAT WHAT. look at me now! i blog in lowercase! WHAT!

7. the theme song. hello. that’s some good instrumental sh*t! if that can’t make you forget about the damn red poltergeist jello, the clown, and the little girl in the tv, i don’t know what can.

The cast of the hit 1980s movie, St. Elmo's Fire.

thanks for the memories, guys! i’ll never forget you. if i had your yearbooks, i’d write, “never change!” in each one of them. except you, demi: you need to stop smoking. and the cocaine. thanks for that sweet sax, billy. rock on, nerdy girl. if you wanna be a social worker, you go ahead and be a social worker. your dad will get used to it.
always ‘n foreva, jessica

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more bad decisions: i watched “the mummy” last night and now i’m totally freaked out.

"you look just like my ex-girlfriend who's been dead for 3,000 years and whom i miss terribly! kiss me!" "no! i don't! eww! get the hell away from me!"

you have your good decisions (vegetables) and your bad decisions (doughnuts/fried vegetables/french fries). i pride myself on good decision making (many vegetables, very few doughnuts, moderate-to-low fries) but last night i really tanked when i decided to watch “the mummy.”

we all know my ability to tolerate horror movies, even when they’re really faux-horror-pseudo-lesbo horror movies. (i.e. i have absolutely no tolerance and scream like a little girl). i’m sure holly would have stepped in and told me to change the channel, you’re going to scare yourself, especially at night, etc. etc. but she was on the phone. game on, i thought. i live to be unsupervised.

i kind of always wanted to see it. besides being a closet sinatra fan and “today” show Superfan (i’ll get to that later this week), i am also a lifelong ancient egypt nerd. as in: my very first book report (4th grade) was on mummification. (i wonder what my teacher thought when i explained what canopy jars are for? hint: storage for mummy guts for use in the afterlife. she never liked me. had her for 5th grade, too. i’m sure she was thrilled.)

so when it was on while i was doing dishes last night, i was like, what the hell, let’s see what this mummy movie is all about.

i missed the beginning but i think what happened was that these egyptologists found an ancient book of spells or something, read one out loud and awakened the beast, who was basically an angry-ass mummy that really missed his old girlfriend who was used as a human sacrifice at some point. i have no idea. but that’s what it seemed like.

he goes around killing everyone, awakening the ancient dead and sucking the life force out of the other egyptologists so he can get stronger. he also opens his mouth reaaaalllly wide, screams and creates sandstorms. oh and he brings these ancient cockroaches back to life that eat and kill people. nice!

i mean, it was pretty cheesy, but also pretty freaky and of course i couldn’t stop watching it. during the last 10 minutes holly got control of the remote and kept switching to “army wives” during the commercials and i was like BABE! WHAT THE HELL! I WANT TO FINISH WATCHING THE MOVIE!

she kept insisting that “she knew when the commercials would end and she would turn it back.” but i was like, “YOU HAVEN’T EVEN BEEN WATCHING THIS EPISODE OF ‘ARMY WIVES.’ WHY IN THE HELL WOULD YOU WANT TO WATCH THE LAST FIVE MINUTES OF IT?!”

to which she responded: “I DON’T KNOW! I JUST DO!”

(and yes, we have turned into the costanzas and now shout all of our conversations.)

she eventually relented and we watched, in awed silence, perhaps the worst commercial known to man (thanks, next day floors! note: this is low-budget baltimore at its finest, folks. welcome to our world), at which point holly turned to me and started complaining that you see? we didn’t have to change it yet. at which point i elbowed her in the mouth (in my mind) and told her to hush up, i needed to get ready for the final minutes of the movie.

so yeah, the end is how you’d expect: they kill the zombie mummies, save the girl, say another spell and grumpypants gets sucked into the ancient egyptian underworld. then the antiquity-filled tomb collapses, they get out in the nick of time, etc.

then i went to bed scared of my own shadow, holly said “you see? i told you you shouldn’t have watched it” and i had to sit thru a special encore of “army wives” anyway, during which i sighed heavily and kept bugging holly to turn it down. her response was, of course, that she watched my dumbbutt mummy movie and now i was going to have to deal with “army wives.”

there is no moral to this story. just that a) the lady in the mummy is really pretty b) mummies probably have really bad breath and c) i’m totally going to have to see “the mummy returns.”

“it’s your lucky day to be baptized in the greek orthodox church”

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introducing...evan!!!

yes it was evan’s (see above) lucky day yesterday, as rochester ny’s most fabulous new resident was baptized (much to our local delight!) in baltimore’s own greektown. he’s got quite’a set’a lungs, that kid, as he let out some serious howls after he was dipped in holy water a few times. (umm, if you were cold and naked and wet (and most likely hungry) in front of a crowd in a church, you’d probably be crying, too.) then he peed on his godmother, poor kid. ha. it was adorable, tho. we love him.

what i am esp. loving these days is my friends having kids. we have plenty of friends with children, but it’s only recently that some of my very oldest friends are having babies. what i am loving even more is that my very oldest guy friends (greg and simon/simos, that’s you;) are having babies before my girlfriends. and what i am loving even more, if that’s possible, is watching them as new dads.

ok, so i am not just watching, i am, as the jews say (in yiddish), is kveling [say: K (as in: c‘mon!) K-vel (like “bell”)-ing], which basically means (b/c there’s no dictionary translation for yiddish words b/c us jews take so darn long to explain everything) bubbling over with emotion–like…bursting at the seams. they are already the best dads to these little boys (grant & evan). and what’s even cuter is that they’re both really big guys and seeing them hold these little babies and coo all over them is like…….well, i kvel. and then i get a little verklempt. then i plotz. and then i need a nosh. (when don’t i need a nosh?)

ok, WAIT. stop. i have referenced too many funny ethnic things in this post to go on any further b/c 1) i’m laughing too hard and 2) you need to know what i’m talking about if you don’t know already b/c it’s too funny for you not to know.

the title of this post is one of my favorite lines from “my big fat greek wedding” (one of my all-time favorite movies), which is said more along the lines of:

 “it’za your’a LUCKY DAY to be a-bapTIZED in the GREEK [tongue roll] ORTHODOX CHURCH.”

the dad (Gus) said this to the fiancee (Ian) in the movie–b/c he had to be baptized as greek orthodox before he married his daughter (Toula). holly had to whisper “don’t say that to anyone today, ok???”  to me at least three times yesterday at the church and then again at lunch afterwards (you can’t take me anywhere. really, you can’t), esp. since a grown man was being baptized (JUST LIKE IN THE MOVIE!) at the same time (simon’s soon-to-be brother-in-law; it was a two’fer yesterday. total baptism two’fer) as evan.

i wound up breaking down and telling evan it was his a-lucky day to be a-bapitzed in the greek orthodox church at the restaurant after lunch. i was high on greek pastries. luckily he’s three months old and didn’t get it. ha.

in honor of evan and yesterday’s festivities and this blog post and new babies and ethnic ppl in general, i am posting one of my favorite scenes from the movie. (YES. IT WAS MY TWIN. you know the one! ha.)

i am also posting a classic clip of coffee talk with linda richman, she of verklempt. (this is the one with *madonna* and roseanne!!! and BARBARA. like BUTTAH! like two sticks’a buttah!)

simos/lena! love you guys! LOVE EVAN. greg/susan: love YOU guys! LOVE GRANT! love that you guys are dads!!!

love the greeks! love the jews! (WHY ARE WE SO SIMILAR? WHY DO WE TALK SO LOUD?!!)

 turn up your volume & prepare to laugh. these will make your day.

(ok, i just watched both of those again and i have tears, i’m laughing so hard. tears. omg i love it.)

here’s why you don’t set off firecrackers in baltimore

’cause, friggin a,  they sound like gunshots.

late june/early july in “charm city” (haha; that’s almost as good as “baltimore: the city that reads”) always stresses me the hell out. it’s like HIT THE DECK every five minutes in our neighborhood. at least after the sun goes down. i swear, even the rumblings of our fridge ice machine set me off these days. is it wrong to say i miss suburban new jersey right now?? 

tell me: where’s the pleasure in setting off firecrackers? (holly, don’t answer this. she would gladly set them off every single night if she had her way.) ok, lighting a bunch and throwing them at the damn ice cream truck with the little girl voice that, after a brief silence, pops up in the middle of whatever it’s playing (damn truck started w/christmas music once spring set in: wtf?) at who-knows-what-decibel and says: HELLO?! would be fun. i’ll admit that. that would be fun. (shorty: you lived in our hood. you know the truck. total shoutout to you right now, btw. hearts.)

i’m already jumpy, what, with the helicopters and searchlights all the time (this is a baltimore thing, and isn’t confined to just our neighborhood, so if you’re a friend that hasn’t visited us yet but wants to, pls don’t be scared). but now it sounds like there’s machine guns around, too.

oh, and don’t think it ends july 4th either. oh no. you see, you have to finish off ALL your explosives. so the fun continues for at least a week after the holiday. yeah if you knock on my door and i don’t answer? i’m hiding under the couch. come back in august.

in other news: we went to latinofest last night. “ahh. it’s so nice to finally be with my ppl,” i said to holly.  not that i’m latina, but apparently i pass for it. i pretty much “pass” for what ethnicity is being celebrated at most ethnic festival around the city (save for african-american/native-american). so, yeah: greekfest? sure, i’m greek! (gimme feta!) polish–yeah, that, too. (gimme perogies!) russian? you betcha. (gimme borscht!) (of course my ancestry does help just a little bit on that one, wink wink)

holly really wanted a “latinofest 09” shirt, which i, of course, found completely adorable (seeing how she’s even less latina than i am). we weren’t finding them anywhere, and we started thinking that maybe they were for workers and volunteers only. she asked this cute guy working the beer stand about it, and he was like, no, sorry. then she joked and was like, can i have yours? and you know what he did? he totally gave her the shirt off his back. (hey germaphobes: he was wearing another t-shirt under it) ppl do that for holly. but the thing is, she’d totally do that for someone, too. (this is one of the many reasons i married her.) he was exceptionally cute, and this created quite a stir. fun.

we got home and watched “vicki cristina barcelona,” which came highly recommended from my favorite food blogger. i must say: i liked it. and don’t ask me how in the hell it happened, but holly fell asleep. and before the very best part! i’m gonna youtube it right here for ya, baby. i’ll slap it on in here for you, too, whoever you are. b/c honestly? sometimes the only way to make a monday better is to watch penelope cruz and scarlett johansson make out in a darkroom. ttys 😉