“If I’m Ever Stranded I Hope It’s In A Bookstore”

I Love BooksMy whole life, I have been very interested in the potential held in things. I love beginnings, when all is possible and everything could be fantastic and nothing has stepped up to the plate to disappoint me. There is nothing I like more than feeling  the weight of a book in my hands and wondering what the story inside might be and if I’m ever stranded I hope it’s in a bookstore.  I feel an overwhelming excitement at the beginning of reading a book, and I  am sure that this love of pure possibility must be (along with how they smell) one of the reasons I adore newborn babies. I can‘t wait to see who they might turn out to be.

I can’t  wait to experience the emotions that will come to the surface. Will I laugh till I cry or will I cry till I laugh? Will I think about experiences I’ve shared with friends from my early school years? Will I be taken back to a time in my childhood when I was a happy and carefree sixth grader riding my bike down to school or to the beach. Will I feel like I just stepped into a Norman Rockwell painting ? Will I think about my first love, my wedding day or the birth of my children? Will I agree or disagree with the author? Will I be moved to make a change in my life, community or even globally because of what some one wrote in a book? Will I give up one or two hours of sleep for this book because it speaks to my heart and soul? Will I feel energized and motivated the next day? Will it seem as though the author knew me and I just know the book was just for me?

Every time I walk into a lovely used  book store  or browse through my local library I am full of excitement and anticipation and I can’t help but wonder what adventure will I be taken on while browsing through all those wonderful books?  Every now and then a movie comes along that resonates with us it maybe a romantic comedy, drama, religious, political or your favorite childhood movie but one thing that is guaranteed you’ll be thinking about possibilities.  One of my favorite movies is a 1940s movie called “The Shop Around The Corner “The Shop Around The Corner Kralik , puts a red carnation in his lapel and finally reveals to Miss Novak that he is in fact her mystery correspondent . . . her “dear friend” and the two kiss and embrace. While watching the movie you just think  they are perfect for each other but will they or wouldn’t they fall in love?  That’s the question!

In the 1981 film “Steel MagnoliasSteele Magnolias at her daughters funeral and  after the other mourner have left. M’Lynn  ( Sally Field) breaks down in hysterics in front of four of her best friends crying out in anger “WHY” and her friends are able to give support to her through love and humor. Later M’Lynn begins to accept her daughter’s death and focuses her energy on helping raise her grandson and life goes on.  Toward the end of  Steel Magnolias you might feel like you are on an emotional roller coaster ride full of sadness when M’Lynn is asking “WHY” and is expressing her anger that her daughter died. I always cry, cry, cry,  then I start feeling better as M’Lynn goes from asking “WHY” to loving and enjoying her grandson and I find myself returning to joy  and laughter as I watch her with her with family, friends and grandson enjoying an Easter Egg hunt.

In the 1998 movieYou’ve Got MailYou've Got Mail Joe, known as “Ny152”  mysteriously postponed meeting shop girl in the beginning of the movie and at the end of the movie they finally meet for the first time. Brinkley, Joe’s golden retriever, who is the topic of many e-mails is with him and Kathleen admits that she had wanted “NY152” to be Joe so badly, and the two kiss.  “Brinkley” Joes golden retriever steals the show and once again we are reminded anything is possible. Shop Girl forgives Ny152 for being part of the big business world that contributed to closing  her family  book store that she had inherited   from her mother . . .  there we have it a Hollywood ending . . .  they happily ever after.

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Veggie Tales

God is Bigger Than the Boogie Man” is one of my grandson’s favorite songs to sing. It’s a catchy little tune isn’t it?  When we sing it over and over and over we laugh a hardy laugh. You try it, say it over and over and see how you feel afterwards. Wasn’t that fun?  Doesn’t God have a great sense of humor?  Talking Veggies! Veggie Tales is an American series of children’s animated films featuring anthropomorphic vegetables in stories conveying moral themes based  on Christianity. They frequently retell Biblical stories, sometimes anachronistically reframe, and include humours references to pop culture in many different ears by putting Veggies spins on them. Big Idea has also published Veggie Tales books and music CDs and branded items such as toys, clothing, and garden seeds for vegetables and flowers. I for one love the name “Big Idea Productions.”  for the name of the publishing company. That’s a God thing. Isn’t it?

Their aim was to produce children’s videos which conveyed Christian moral themes and taught Biblical values and lessons. The animated featured involved stories told by a group of recurring vegetable characters wh lived on a kitchen countertop. The first 30-mintue program called   “Where’s God When I’m S-Scared?”  They also released two feature-length movies in 1993 “Jonah” A Veggie Tales Movie and “The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything.” 

VeggieTales has a continuous back story that all the cartoons are actually teleplays, performed by various vegetables and fruit that live together on the same kitchen countertop. Some of these characters have “real names,” and take on various roles in the teleplays, although they will also often appear as themselves. Most of these “regulars” were established in the very earliest videos, while some have been added more recently. 

Don’t forget!  God Is Bigger Than The Boogie Man,  God Is Bigger Than The Boogie Man. Did I tell you that God Is Bigger Than The Boogie Man? I don’t think that Veggie Tales is just for kids. It’s for parents and grandparents too. Remember God Is For You!

 

Input

Several years ago a pair of movies hit the big screen featuring a loveable, wise cracking robot as the central star and hero figure.

One word seems to define this robot in the mind of many who remember the movie and that is input.

This mechanical marvel with a human personality was starved for “input” to feed its vast memory banks and satisfy its craving for knowledge. Our minds surpasses the complexity of the finest computer systems man can make.

It is the greatest multitasker and creative interpreter of data, working around the clock from its earliest moments of existence until its final function at death. The continuous service life of the human computer may span as much as one hundred years or more. At least two things are significantly different about your brain. You decide what input goes in and when and where to focus your virtually unlimited thinking power. Some people focus the potential of their incredible brains on advanced theories of astrophysics, while others prefer to memorize endless columns of sports statistics.

 A few study the intricacies of human languages while entire generations prefer to focus on the latest fashions, street slang, and social trends. Our society seems to be addicted to the “blame game.”  People seem to want to blame instead of accepting responsibility for their own choices. There are times in life when we can become negative, discouraged and then we make it worse when we chose to water it, nurture it, coddle it, and help the negative grow.

My mother use to tell me that nobody can make you depressed. She also said, if you’re not happy, nobody is forcing you to be unhappy. If you’re negative and you have a bad attitude, nobody is forcing you to be unhappy. if you’re negative and you have an attitude, nobody’s coercing you to be bored, uncooperative, sarcastic or sullen. She taught me that it wasn’t the circumstances that had me down, it was my thoughts about the circumstances that had me down. She would also remind me to take time, and think about what I was thinking about.

Obviously we can’t ignore problems and live in denial, pretending that nothing bad ever happens to us. That’s unrealistic. Is it?  My mother was a list maker and she encouraged me to make lists too. We called them our “Ben Franklin” lists.  

Every now and then we would make a thought list and list the thoughts that were dominated in our thinking, those that only crossed our minds occasionally, and those that never seem to find their way into our minds. She said, that negativity, cynicism, scorn and pessimism are viruses and diseases to the human soul.

 They can eat away at our personality and faith like runaway cancerous growths. If your attitude is dominated by negativity it’s possible to change your attitude but it doesn’t happen instantly.

People can do it thought by thought, word by word, and decision by decision. This transformation process involves changing all those negative thoughts for positive ones. Like the lovable robot  said, it’s all about “Input.” 

 

The Movie Roman Holiday

Roman Holiday is a 1953 romantic comedy directed  and produced by William Wyler and starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn. Hepburn won an Academy Award for best actress for her performance; the screenplay and costume design also won.

The plot is about Ann (Hepburn) as the crown princess of an unspecified country. Who one night secretly leaves her country’s embassy to experience Rome by herself. She had taken a sedative before she left. Eventually it took effect and she fell asleep on a bench, where she met Joe ( Gregory Peck), an American reporter working in Rome finds her.

Not recognizing her, he offers her money so that she can take a taxi home, but a very woozy “Anya Smith” (as she calls herself) refuses to coöperate. Joe finally decides, for safety’s sake, to let her spend the night in his apartment. He is amused by he regal way. When Joe is informed that the press conference for the princess had been canceled because the princess had suddenly “fallen ill”. Joe sees a picture of her and the opportunity before him and proposes an exclusive interview with his editor. Joe also surreptitiously calls his photographer friend, Irving ( Eddie Albert). 

As Joe and Anna’s  relationship developes Anya shares with Joe her dream of living a normal life without her crushing responsibilities. Throughout all this, they gradually fall in love, but Anya realizes that their relationship cannot continue.

She finally bids farewell to Joe and returns to the embassy. The next day. Princess Ann appears at a news conference, and is alarmed to find Joe among the press.

 Joe lets her know by allusion, that her secret is safe with him. Irving discreetly presents her with an envelope with the photos in it. She in turn works into her bland statements a coded message of love and gratitude to Joe. She then departs, leaving Joe to linger for a while, contemplating what might have been.

Romance is the pleasurable feeling of excitement and mystery associated with love. In the context of romantic love relationships, romance usually implies an expression of one’s love, or one’s deep emotional desires t connect with another person. Historically, the term “romance” originates with  the medieval ideal of chivalry as set out in its Romance literature.

The debate over an exact definition of love may be found in literature a well as in the works of psychologists, biochemists and other professional and specialists. Romantic love is a relative term, but generally accepted as a definition that distinguishes moments and situations within interpersonal relationships to an individual as contributing to a significant relationship connection.

Time Is Marching On

One of my favorite cinematic scenes is in the movie Steele Magnolias.  

Truvy Jones (played by Dolly Parton) is standing on the porch of beauty salon talking with young  Annette ( played by Daryl Hannah “Honey”  Truvy says, ” Time is marching on-and it is marching all over my face.”  

No words were truer than this time is marching on and not only is it marching all over my face but it has taken over my whole body. As I recognize this phenomenon of aging I’m reminded that I’ve earned every wrinkle. Every year their numbers increase. We’ve been together so long, that we are becoming good friends. But not such good friends, that I wouldn’t agree to have them  removed. Like un-friending a friend on Facebook.

I’ve  always wondered if wrinkles could talk what they might say? Perhaps the lines on my forehead would say?  I waited up for my children when they missed their curfew, started driving or went out on their first dates.

 However, there is another way to look at these characteristic indention. Maybe the lines on my forehead show how much time I’ve spent thinking about those I love or studying the world around me and finding it good. The lines around my mouth might come from the many times I ‘ve stood in awe and smiled at a beautiful sunset over the ocean.  Or smiled at a flower as it began to bloom as I walked through the rose garden in Balboa Park in San Diego and smiled at how wonderful creation is. I’m sure that some of the lines around my mouth and eyes are from the gift of laughter. Anyone who knows me knows I laugh a lot.

Perhaps the lines around my eyes are laugh lines memory boards that hold the experiences of my life that I have enjoyed and participated in the most.  Occasionally my girlfriends and I would get together. We use to laugh and joke with each other about ageing.

 Now many decades later we wish that the beauty secrets in ” Grandma’s Little Beauty” remedy books would do the trick. But the reality is it takes money, money, money, to remove all our lines. What is a girl to do these days with all the choices we have?