Friday, May 19, 2017

Movie Soundtrack Earworms

Friday: Comic Relief

We watched Moana (2016) last Sunday, and I've had at least one song from the soundtrack caught in my head every day since. Moana earworms.

It started Monday morning with You're Welcome, a catchy tune sung by the demigod Maui (Dwayne Johnson). I mentioned the frustration to my husband, so he sang lyrics of Shiny, another song from the movie, in hopes that changing the tune would get the first song out of my head.

Nope. It only turned my earworm into a medley of both songs.

I looked up ways to get rid of earworms:
  • Chew gum.
  • Sing another song. 
  • Listen to another song.
  • Chat with someone.
  • Meditate.
  • Visualize changing the channel inside your head to another song.
  • Look up the lyrics.
  • Listen to the song all the way through.
  • Read a book.
  • Do a puzzle.
  • Relax. The earworm will pass.
That last one annoys me the most... the earworm will pass? Maybe someday, but it's now day six. I've tried every one of those suggestions and somehow only succeeded in adding yet another Moana tune to the medley, How Far I'll Go.

Maybe writing this blog post will help. Maybe it will pass those Shiny earworms on to you. You better believe it... yes, that's How Far I'll Go. And if you find those songs stuck in your head... well... what can I say except you're welcome! ...

... And thank you!

Dwayne Johnson - You're Welcome (from Moana)

Monday, May 8, 2017

Creativity Inside the Box

Monday: Dialogue, Lines, or Quotes

M. Night Shyamalan, writer and director of The Sixth Sense (1999), said,
"I believe in the process of limitations forcing creativity. It's important to have walls to work against."
I enjoy blog challenges because creativity flows from limiting posts to topics based on specific writing prompts and guidelines. Limitations spawn creativity.

We like to believe anything is possible and want to dream big, so it's easy to assume having no boundaries is a good thing. We hear the slogan "think outside the box" and forget how the very factors that seemingly box us in--boundaries, limitations, guidelines, deadlines--actually generate creativity. Thinking inside the box sparks ideas.

For instance, the April Blogging from A to Z Challenge gives guidelines to post with a specific letter on certain days throughout the month of April. Since this is a film blog, I added another boundary... each post needed to include at least one movie reference. And another limitation came by following a theme, Food in Film.

The letter K proved difficult, but thinking of my boundaries...
  • food 
  • starting with the letter K
  • appearing in a movie
...gave birth to one of my favorite posts during the challenge: Food in Film: Kibble.

This was my third year of participating in and completing the A to Z Challenge. Each year thinking inside the box stimulated additional ideas for future A to Z posts. Based on that growing list of ideas, I have film-related themes for 12 more of the yearly challenge!

Shyamalan's words ring true, "It's important to have walls to work against." Limitations generate creativity.

(Click here for links to all my A to Z posts, or click on the tab above.)

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Food in Film: Zagnut

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

A food addict and connoisseur of tasteful films reviews Food in Film, starring...

… Zagnut

The crunchy peanut butter and coconut candy bar was a delicious treat when I was a kid. I haven't eaten one in years, but I can still imagine the taste.

In The Great Outdoors (1988), Chet (John Candy) wants a bonding father/son moment with his youngest son. He drives to a garbage dump where the bears are known to forage, but the boy seems unimpressed. So... Chet tosses Zagnut bars to the bears, then places one on the hood of their vehicle. The bears get closer alright.

I would never entice a bear closer. I read the "Bear Etiquette" pamphlet given to us while camping in The Grand Teton National Park. The instructions included:
  • Never approach a bear. Okay. I have no problem with that rule. 
  • Never allow a bear to get human food. If approached while eating, put food away and retreat to a safe distance. Sorry, but if I'm approached while eating, I am not taking time to put the food away!!
  • Never abandon food because of an approaching bear. Always take it with you. Yeah, right. This is too much like the previous one. Let's see... a bear approaches me because I have yummy food, how does taking said yummy food with me solve anything? 
  • Never throw your pack or food at a bear in an attempt to distract it.  Sorry again, but I'm all for throwing anything (except a family member) at a bear if it will take its attention off me!
So go ahead, Chet, throw the Zagnuts to attract the bears... I will be running the opposite direction while you distract them.

From Apples to Zagnut, that's a wrap on my Food in Film theme, and the 2017 A to Z Challenge.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Food in Film: Yolk

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

A food addict and connoisseur of tasteful films reviews Food in Film, starring...

… Yolk

A rotten egg breaks all over Templeton the Rat (Steve Buscemi, voice). The barn animals react to the horrid smell and he puns, "The yolks on me!" (Charlotte's Web, 2006)

Mind if I shell out some egg "yolks"?

The wording might not be eggs-act, but two men place a breakfast order in a diner. One orders cow's tongue and the other responds, "Eewww! How can you eat something that came from a cow's mouth?" Then he places his order, "I'll have the eggs."

Why can't you tease egg whites? They can't take a yolk.

As I've mentioned before, life is what comedy is made of... One day I dropped a trayful of eggs while removing them from the refrigerator. My husband reacted, "What's going on?"

Looking at the broken yolks around my feet, I responded, "Apparently I'm ovulating."

Scene: The yolks on Templeton.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Food in Film: Xiaolongbao

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

A food addict and connoisseur of tasteful films reviews Food in Film, starring...

… Xiaolongbao

I need to stretch this one a little. Xiaolongbao, a Chinese steamed bun, is usually a soup dumpling filled with meat. The Chinese steamed buns I refer to in the post are more of a bread bun and called mantou.

A dramatic scene in one of my favorite foreign films, To Live (1994), comes to mind. It's an epic film directed by Yimou Zhang (he also directed the 2008 Olympic Opening Ceremony in Beijing), and follows the lives of a couple, Xu Fugui (You Ge) and Xu Jiazhen (Li Gong), over three decades.

Tragedy strikes as their daughter goes into labor and gives birth in a county hospital. Nurses attend to her because all the doctors, accused of being "reactionary academic authorities," have been sent to a concentration camp.

Fugui manages to get a doctor to the hospital, but the man hasn't eaten in several days. Fugui buys steamed buns for him. Shortly after, the young mother begins hemorrhaging and the frantic nurses admit they are under-qualified and don't know what to do.

They hurry to the doctor and discover he is nearly unconscious. He gorged on seven buns while drinking a large amount of water. The water caused the buns to swell inside his stomach, making him too ill to be of any help.

The doctor's situation is understandable since we might expect a starving person to overfill on food. I have never known that type of hunger. I have food available and the knowledge that I can and will eat again, and yet I experience occasional times of gorging... eating until I am ill, in pain, and cannot function.

And I find it ironic that part of my compulsive overeating stems from learned behavior... being told as a child to eat what I was served... eat foods I didn't like... eat even if I wasn't hungry... clean my plate... because there were starving children in China.

Trailer: To Live

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Food in Film: Watermelon

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

A food addict and connoisseur of tasteful films reviews Food in Film, starring...

… Watermelon

When I eat watermelon, I put a slice on my plate, take my fruit spoon and start on the outer edge and keep working my way around the melon until I finally get to the best bite... the heart. The laaaast bite.

The Dodos in Ice Age (2002) fight for the laaaaast melon:

Scene: The laaaaast melon.

I am selfish with my food, and I save the best for last. As my husband can attest, don't ask for my last bite. When we were newly married, he asked for my last bite of cottage cheese and pineapple. I feigned serving it to him on my spoon but quickly swooped it back to my mouth and ate in delight.

It started our first fight.

Unbeknownst to me, he was testing my love based on that bite."If you truly loved me, you would have given me your last bite!" My argument, "If you truly loved me you wouldn't ask for my last bite!"

It was also our first lesson in marriage. "Tests" of love almost always fail. If we look for signs that our spouse doesn't love us, we will find them. If we look for signs that our spouse does love us, we can find those, too.

We've been married 37 years. He accepts my food possessiveness. He doesn't snitch food off my plate, and doesn't ask for--but sometimes I willingly offer--my laaaaaaast bite.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Food in Film: Vegetables

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

A food addict and connoisseur of tasteful films reviews Food in Film, starring...


Do you recall the scene in Father of the Bride (1991) when the daughter is about to leave the house with her newly announced fiancé and the father, George Banks (Steve Martin), tells her it's nippy out and suggests she wear a sweater? She ignores his advice, but when the fiancé agrees and tells her it's cold out, she sweetly complies and takes her jacket.

That was our daughter with vegetables. We had to coax, beg, and bribe to get her to eat vegetables... then she got engaged. Suddenly the war on vegetables was over because her fiancé said they were good for her.

If children won't listen to their parents about vegetables being good for them, maybe they will listen to Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire). In Spider-Man 2 (2004), two boys witness Peter using his spider reflexes to avoid a terrible collision and ask:

How'd you do that?

Uh... Work out. Plenty of rest.
You know, eat your green vegetables.

That's what my mom is always saying.
I just never actually believed her!

Scene: Eat your green vegetables.

I like a wide variety of vegetables and will eat many of them raw. I have no problem with their taste, and usually don't "doctor" them up. So, in my daughter's defense, the vegetables I served were fairly plain. The important thing is that she loves vegetables now and her children--my grandbabies--love them, too!