Addiction

B threw herself down on the floor, not bothering to find a mat.  I groaned and sat down beside her.

“I hate the gym,” I said, panting.

“I know.  I hate exercising.  I hate breathing.  I hate life.”  B pulled herself into a sitting position and put her head between her knees.  The gym was getting crowded, now, with eager girls in tiny spandex shorts who could run for hours without their makeup smudging and beefed up football players in tight, ripped t-shirts that showed off rippling biceps.  The girls pissed me off.  The guys I didn’t mind so much.

“An hour on the elliptical is good,” B said wearily.  “I definitely exceeded my calorie burning goal for the day.”

“Yeah, me too,” I said, wiping sweat from my forehead with my shirt.  “Well, I don’t know if I can handle anything else, today.  I think I’ll head home and study.  Same time tomorrow?  Maybe we can work some free weights in?”  I got to my feet and reached down to help up B.  B didn’t grab my hand.  I watched as a strange look come over her face.  She grinned slowly and a devilish gleam came to her eye.  She looked up sharply.

“Do you want to get cupcakes?” she whispered.

“What?” I asked loudly.

“Do. You. Wanttogetcupcakes?!” she hissed.

“Seriously?  Now?  Shouldn’t we go get a salad?”

“No!” she exclaimed, pulling my hand down so that my face was close to hers.  “No.  We should get cupcakes.  I went to the store the other day…and there they were.  Sitting there, so simple.  So fluffy.  The icing the perfect blend of butter cream and whipped cream.  The sprinkles multi-colored and sugary.  Everything about them is magical.  It’s like…”  Her voiced went down to a whisper again.  “They’re orgasmic!”

I looked at her pityingly, like I was looking at a strung out junkie.

“You don’t understand!  They have to be experienced to be believed.  Come on, let’s go!  Please?  You’ll love them as much as I do, I know it!”  She was getting giddy.  She had jumped to her feet and was hopping from one foot to the other, her energy miraculously restored by the promise of pastry.

“Well…OK, I guess,” I said, relenting.  She clapped excitedly and dragged me to the locker room.  I changed quickly and came out to find her still in her gym clothes.

“Don’t you want to change?” I asked.  “It’s pretty cold out there.”  The weather was Chicago-esque that day, and by that I mean it was pretending in the morning that it was going to be sunny and lovely, but then suddenly changing to windy and cold.

She shook her head.  “No, let’s just go.  I’ll be fine.”

She changed her tune when we stepped outside.  The wind battered us all the way to her car, and she whimpered as she rubbed continuously at her goose pimpled arms.  Getting in the car was a relief to us both, and she turned the heat on full blast.  As it wasn’t warming up fast enough for her, B reached into the back seat and pulled the blanket she made her dog sit on when it was in the car around her.  It was covered in small muddy paw prints and long white fur.  She jammed the car into gear and gunned it out of the parking lot.

The entire way to the store, she regaled me with stories of how she first saw the cupcakes, how she ate them after she bought them, and how she had eaten one for breakfast that morning.

“I even made my boyfriend eat one with me this morning so I didn’t feel like too much of a cow,” she said, slightly sheepish.  “He watched with what I can only describe as sheer terror when I shoved it into my face and made sounds that should only be made in intimate settings.  It was a mess….but man, was it ever worth it.”

She made a wide turn into the grocery store parking lot and quickly found a spot.  I got out of the car, shivering as a blast of cold air hit me in the face.  I walked around to the other side of the car to meet B.  There she was, a very wealthy, stylish, and stunningly beautiful girl, standing in the middle of a grocery store parking lot in sweaty gym clothes, messy hair, makeup running, swaddled in a dirty old dog blanket.  She came up to me, her face lit up with childish delight.

“Cupcakes!” she whispered in excitement.  I stifled a snicker.

We went into that store and came out with five–count em–five boxes of these cupcakes.  I could feel the stares of other shoppers and the store clerks as B skipped down the aisle, weighed down with cupcakes, looking like some sort of homeless woman about to get a crack fix, and I, an embarrassed family member dragged into a situation against her will.

After we paid for the cupcakes, we went back to sit in her car.

“OK,” she said.  “We should go to a more secluded location, but I can’t wait.  Here, try them.”  She shoved a cupcake in my face.  I gave her one last bewildered look and took a bite.

Oh, sweet Lord above.  Best cupcake ever.  Sweet, but not too sweet.  Spongy cake.  Light.  Fluffy.  Perfect.  I heard a moan escaped my lips.  B, who might have been on her second one at that point, shouted, “See!” through a mouthful of cupcake.  I could feel the frosting caking my lips and I knew a smudge had gotten on my nose, but I didn’t care.  I grabbed another tiny bundle of joy and shoved it into my face, licking my fingers desperately when I was done.

At that moment, we heard a tap on the window.  Turning in surprise, I beheld a large, mustachioed African-American cop standing outside.  He stared at us for a moment, his aviators reflecting the shock in my face.  Then he dramatically imitated me licking my fingers, complete with lip smacking.  I turned beet red and looked frantically around for something to hide behind, but there was nothing.  The cop laughed uproariously, slapping his knees and walking off, periodically turning around and shaking a naughty-naughty finger at me.  An older woman, who was sitting in her car in the space across from us joined the cop in his mirth, pointing and laughing at us.

I was overcome with shame, my face a deep shade of crimson.  This was so unseemly.  Nice girls don’t gobble a half dozen cupcakes in grocery store parking lots.  How did I get here?  What had I become?  I looked down at my frosting-stained hands in disgust.  Then I looked over at B.  Her mouth was covered in sugary mush, her mouth full.  Her hair was disheveled and she still had the dog blanket around her.  With one finger in her mouth, she looked at me innocently, completely guiltless.

“What?” she mumbled.  Then she picked up another one.  And so did I.

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Seduction 101

I shrugged on my jacket and grabbed my purse from under the table, waving to some of my colleagues seated at the other end of the bar.  I figured it was OK to leave; I’d put in the obligatory hour at the department-wide social event and felt I now deserved a quiet walk to a quiet house where I would spend a quiet evening.  I turned to E, who had just ended a conversation with one of our colleagues.

“Well, I’m off,” I said.  “This was fun.  Thanks for the invite.”

“Of course,” she said, smiling brilliantly.  E is tall and graceful with a mass of dark curls always piled on top of her head.  She comes off as a bit of an airhead, but she’s nice enough and quite intelligent really, though she doesn’t often show it.  She’s usually full of idle chatter that is welcome after a long day of studying. “Thanks for coming.  You’ll be there on Friday, right?”  I grimaced internally at the reminder of yet another party I had to attend.

“Sure,” I said, smiling back.  “Wouldn’t miss it.”  I made to leave, but, wanting to satisfy a suspicion, I stopped and bent down conspiratorially.  “By the way,” I said in a low voice, “I think A really has a thing for you.”  She fluttered her eyelashes innocently.

“What makes you say that?” she asked.

“He was talking to you when I got here, he followed you around most of the night, and spent a really long time time saying goodbye to you.  I think you’ve got a not-so-secret admirer.”  She waved a hand dismissively.

“Oh, that.  No, he’s just helping me with my Arabic.”

“Uh…right,” I returned.  “Be careful.  You might make the poor kid fall in love with you.”

“Good!” she said, surprising me.  “That would make my life easier.”

“Huh?  Wait, do you like him?” I asked in a strained whisper, hurriedly taking a seat, my thirst for juicy gossip overriding my desire to leave.

“He’s a nice guy.  He’s fine.”  She flashed another beautiful smile and waved to some of our colleagues who were leaving.  “He’s tutoring me, and it’s helping.  I’m just taking advantage of a good situation.”

I stared at her.  “You’re playing around with him for tutoring?  That’s a little mercenary, don’t you think?”

“No, it’s not!” she gasped in shock.  “I’m improving my situation by using my…my feminine wiles!  What’s wrong with that?”

“Did you tell him you have a boyfriend?”

“I…may have implied that I have someone I’m talking to.”

“And that didn’t put him off?!”

“No.  Maybe he didn’t get it.  Before you got here, he was talking a lot about his OKCupid profile and how to know if a girl is easy by how much she drinks on the first date.  It was a little weird, but whatever.  But come on, you do the same thing!”

“No, I most certainly do not!”

“All girls do!  You use your body and charm to get what you want.  It’s easy, it’s cheap, and it works.  Well…it doesn’t always work.”  E had told me a few weeks ago how she had played on the affections of the two TAs for our history class last semester, and how, after their hopes were disappointed, neither of them will have anything to do with her.  “But a lot of times it does.  I mean how do you think I got into this school?  I had straight C’s in undergrad, but I had the most stellar recommendations from my employer and professors, and they were all men.  Me and my friends used to compete over who could seduce a TA the fastest, who could lead a guy along the farthest, and what was the best thing we could get out of him.  It was fun.  It is fun.  A little flirting here and there, a little whiff of possibility, and you can wrap any guy around your little finger.  Show some skin, smile sweet, stare in wonder at their wide knowledge of the big scary world, and you get a Tiffany’s bracelet.  Like mine!” she said brightly, jingling her wrist and its trinket in front of me.

“But I mean…some of them must sometimes expect some sort of pay off?” I asked, completely shocked at what I was hearing.  I suppose my relatively sheltered upbringing in a scholarly family had taught me to get ahead in my education through my merits and had definitely not taught me how to use sex as a weapon.

“Yeah, I guess.”  I thought of A, who I knew was a smart, kind, sweet guy who I instinctively felt like protecting, now that I had heard E‘s confessions.

“What about the current dilemma, then?” I asked.

“Oh, I don’t know.  I’ll probably get as much as I can out of him, then make out with him a bit before he leaves for the summer.”  And she said this all with a straight face, with no attempt at irony.  I had seen these kinds of girls in movies, those sly women who knew men so well that they knew exactly how to get what they wanted.  The whole display always made me feel a little ill.

I was angry at E, and I didn’t know why.  I felt the entire idea was sexist…but how?  She was using her body and her personality for her advantage by playing on the carnal lusts of men.  If you really thought about it, it was a grand triumph for feminism and more proof that men are drooling idiots.  So I wasn’t mad about that.  I guess I was mad because I could probably never get away with it.

Confused, perplexed, I stood up and slung my purse over my shoulder.

“See you Friday!” E said as she stood to hug me.  I hugged back, half-heartedly, and headed for the door.  I glanced back at her and I saw her sidle up to one of our colleagues, a married man with two kids, and smile, hitting him lightly on the shoulder.  I shook my head and walked out into the street.

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A Warm Night

“Oh my God, is that an eight-year-old playing pool in that bar?”

I crane my neck to look through the rear window to where J is pointing.  I don’t see anything, and say as much.

“S, did you see that?” J asks.  S, who is driving shrugs and quips,

“I’d hold off on calling the cops till you see them forcefully injecting him with heroin.”

“I wonder what it’s like to be addicted to heroin?” I ask no one in particular.  S’s crucifix swings wildly from the rearview mirror as he makes a sharp turn on Roosevelt.

“I bet there are several dozen folks in our neighborhood who could tell you that,” says J, rolling down the window and lighting a cigarette.

“J, didn’t you give those up for Lent?  And if you didn’t, could you give them up for the portion of Lent that you’re in my car for?” S says from the front.  J grins and pitches the cigarette out the window.

“I don’t know anything about any heroin addicts, but I know this one lady who’s almost certainly on meth,” J says.  “She stands outside my building and panhandles.  She tells people she’s five months pregnant and that she needs bus money to get to the battered women’s shelter in…it’s either in Woodlawn or South Shore.  Anyway, if you don’t give her money, or if you have the audacity to give her food, she throws a gigantic fit.  Every time I see her, she’s yelling at people.  Or yelling at cars.  Or at bikes.  Anything that’s mobile, really.”

“How do you know she’s on meth?” S asks.

“You can just tell.  Her teeth are falling out of her head, and she has scabs on her face.  I know where all that ‘bus money’ is going.  And she’s been five months pregnant since last year.  Honestly.  Just tell me what you really want the money for, and maybe I’ll oblige.  Heads up, there’s the on-ramp.”  S turns sharply once more, sending the Son of God into another frenzied dance.

“I saw this guy on a street corner back home, once,” I said, “who was panhandling with a cardboard sign.  I was expecting it to say something like, ‘Homeless veteran, anything helps, God bless,’ but instead it said, ‘I’m not gonna lie, I need a beer.’  It was so funny that I gave him a quarter.”

“Yeah, I bet they make more in an hour than I do,” S grumbles.

“Maybe, but I still feel bad for them and want to help.  Last week, I was picking up some food and this lady comes out of the shadows asking me to buy her something to eat.  I offer her half of what I had just purchased, and she said she couldn’t handle Asian food.  I had a few minutes, so I offered to get her something from somewhere else.  The somewhere else she wanted food from ended up being closed, so we kept walking down the street, looking into restaurants, hoping they’d be open.  Eventually she settled on this Thai place.”

“I thought she couldn’t handle Asian?”

“I know, I know, but at that point, I was a block and half away from my car and in my pajamas, so I was like, whatever.  So she settles on this Thai place, we go in, and she tries to order some soup.  They guy’s all, ‘We’re out of that.’  So she asks for something else.  ‘We’re out of that, too.’  When she’s distracted by something, he turns to me and pantomimes for me to basically GTFO.  She sees him and starts a big fuss about how he won’t serve her, and he’s telling me that she’s going to try to steal my credit card, and I’m sitting there wondering why I decided to leave the house.”

“Well, that was really generous of you to try to help her out like that,” J says.  I blush, thankful for the darkness of the car.  “So what happened?”

“Eh, eventually he says he’ll serve her, and she orders some fried rice, but to make sure I suffer, the guy makes me stay while they make it.  Meanwhile, I don’t have my phone, and my friend’s in the car freaking out.  But she and I had a nice conversation.  She just seemed like she was down on her luck.  I don’t think she’d been on the street for more than a year.  I’ve had a little experience in homeless relief, and I like to think I can tell.”

“So she wasn’t nuts?” asks S.  He is going at least 15 over, but I’m too tired to care about traffic laws.  Other cars are still zipping by us.

“No,” I say.  “Probably a little bit of an alcoholic who found herself out of work.  Not nuts, though.”

“Have you guys met Snake?” J asks suddenly.

“Who?” asks S.

“Snake!  Come on, Snake!  You probably couldn’t have a nice conversation with Snake.”

“What do you mean?” I ask.  

“Snake’s a millenarian psychopath, so he’s always sitting around muttering about the end of the world.  He also takes it upon himself to cast the demons out of those who pass him, and then goes on diatribes about how Christ will return and punish all the gays, or something.”

“Naturally,” I say.

“I call him Snake because one day, when I was walking by his favorite haunt, there was this lady with her little chihuahua waiting at a crosswalk and Snake starts staring really intensely at this dog, as if he can see something no one else can about this dog.  The dog stares right back, probably wondering if he was going to get eaten that day.  Then Snake goes like this.”  J holds up his hand, his thumb touching his ring and middle fingers, then he shoots his hand quickly towards my face.  I gasp in fright.

“SNAKE!” shouts J, yanking his back just as suddenly as he had put it out.  “That’s what he did to this dog.  He did it just once, and he did it really fast, and I swear to God, the dog pees and then runs behind its owner.”  J is doubled over in his seat laughing.  S is chuckling and shaking his head in the front. 

“Wow,” I say, smiling.  “I kind of want to meet this guy, now.”

“Don’t worry,” says J in a creepy voice.  “Snake will find you.”  

We laugh as we pull up to a stoplight under the Metra.  I glance to my left and see a man rolling out a sleeping bag below an overhang, several bulging plastic bags scattered around his feet.  His shoes are dirty and falling apart and he is moving with the assistance of a battered metal cane.  I look at S’s crucifix and pray that it stays warm tonight.

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The 21 Faces of Eve

Last week was spring break at my university, and as most of my colleagues and friends decided to fly the coop for the week, I was left mostly up to my own devices.  I went to the opera, saw a movie or two, got a little too tipsy for my own good at the local pub, and learned a handful of Balkan folk dances.  Aside from this, however, I found myself either engrossed in a good, for-fun book or browsing through Netflix.

Netflix is glorious, because it takes stuff you like and then makes recommendations based on stuff it knows you like.  It’s pretty great.  They’re not even paying me to say this; I genuinely believe it is awesome.  Netflix told me, for example, that, due to my interest in “Shameless” and “Mad Men”, I would probably also like this:

Image

I tried watching the first episode and had to shut it off after about ten minutes because I couldn’t keep from sobbing.  It hit just a little too close to home.  It affected me to the point where I felt I needed to put into words something about my life that I have never written about before, and have actually told almost no one.

My mother was crazy.  No, I don’t mean, “Haha, dudes, my mom is so nutty, sometimes.”  I mean, my mother was literally crazy.  Diagnosed with bipolar disorder, mild schizophrenia, and multiple personality disorder, my mother was a walking, talking, psychologist’s wet dream of a crazy mess.  A victim sexual and emotional abuse, my mother developed a number of mental disorders that lay dormant for many years, glazed over by alcoholism, which was followed by an attempt to face her demons by entering the social work field.  When she met my dad, she was perfectly normal; but after my brother was born, things started to go rapidly downhill.  There would be small things, like my docile, sweet-tempered mother would suddenly lash out at my equally mild-mannered father, or she would forget where she had been the whole day, or, more often than anything else, she would go through crippling bouts of depression that would leave her bedridden for days.

She started going to therapy and began a regimen of drugs that often turned her near comatose.  She had a giant metal box that she and my dad kept under lock and key.  The magic box held uppers, downers, sedatives, anti-psychotics…almost anything you can think of, she owned a bottle of it.  Most of the time the pills worked.  By that I mean I would come home after school and find her still asleep, blissfully disconnected from the depression and hallucinations that plagued her.   Other times the pills either didn’t work, or she would not take them.  Those were the days I would come home to her crying in the bathroom or staring blankly at the kitchen wall.  Those were the days I would come home to find the car gone, with dad out searching for her.  Those were the days I would come home to hear that dad had needed to take her to the hospital because she had tried to kill herself again.

There were good days, certainly.  The meds didn’t always take her completely out of commission.  I remember cooking with her mostly.  She was a great cook with lots of fun ideas.  She used to sit me on the counter and let me help.  I loved talking to her; she was so funny and so kind.

On the good days, she was herself.  A lot of times, though, she was somebody else, which is why the “United States of Tara” show elicited such a violent reaction in me.  My mother had 21 documented personalities.  God, I wish I were making that up.  I took a psychology class once and someone said they thought it was a fake disorder.  Would that that were true.  I knowingly met a handful of her personalities, and though the concept of it was absolutely terrifying to me, I appreciated them.  I knew that they took over when mom was having a hard time dealing with something; I knew that they were like teams of wrestlers, tagging out mom when she needed a break from life.  Amanda was probably my favorite.  Amanda was bubbly and loving.  Adam was the disciplinarian, and when mom yelled or punished us, I knew it was Adam, so I didn’t get too upset.  Paula was the logical one that you could have a conversation with; she was the academic.  The other ones didn’t give me their names, as they wouldn’t always admit who they were or when they were there…but I knew.  If you’re around a person with MPD long enough, you can tell.  “United States of Tara” over exaggerates it.  My mother never really dressed differently or adopted a different accent.  It was never that obvious, and so, to people outside the family, she seemed like herself…but I knew.  I knew she wasn’t “herself.”

Is it sad that my most vivid memories of my mother involve a psych ward?  I remember her best in a hospital gown or a night shirt that she had taken with her, a small smile on her face that barely distracted one from her haunted eyes.  The conversations were whispered, brief, and often through or just in front of the psych ward door.  I felt like a bad daughter for being secretly thankful that she was locked behind those doors, because I knew that while she was in there, she could hurt neither herself nor my doggedly loyal and patient father.

 I never felt truly safe with my mother because I was always subconsciously aware of the fact that I would need to take over in the inevitable emergency.  I learned quickly how to deal with sticky situations and how to get my siblings out of the room when she started falling apart.  I came to take over the situation on a permanent basis when I was thirteen and she died from a medical complication.  I saw her the night before she was to have a simple operation to let her know I was trying out for cheerleading, and then later that night she was in a coma.  From the depths of my soul, I hate myself for saying this, but it was a small relief to know that she was out of pain, out of torment…and that I was out of danger or that I no longer needed to take care of her.

This is a seldom visited part of my psyche, and I’m too afraid to really examine the memories I have of her or how those memories have and do affect me.  A part of me says that I need to think and talk about it, or I will become as crazy as she was.  A louder part of me says that if I think about it or talk about it then I will realize that I am just as crazy as she was.

Writing this out helps a little, I guess.

Anyway.  The moral of the story is: Don’t watch shows from Showtime.  By watching them, you’re basically paying to be depressed.  Stick to NBC.  It’s free, AND it has “The Office”.

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I Hate This Holiday

But whatever.  Wishing all of you out there in the blogosphere a Merry Christmas.  May “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Also, may you receive everything you asked Santa for, and may you eat a lot of fattening foods and not gain a pound.

I’ll leave you with a little snippet of what my holidays will consist of here in Small Town, USA.

 

Oh, whoops, I meant

 

Except slightly more dead with more dressing.

 

Traditional sister-to-sister gift. But I've never gotten Sponge Bob. It's my greatest Christmas wish.

 

No Christmas would be complete without getting pissed at the US Postal Service.

 

Because the morons at the post office just HAD to do their jobs, presents my sister and I had bought online for the family have been shipped to our respective non-Small Town addresses. Idiots. Forwarding addresses should not be respected on Christmas.

 

Essentially what any family dinner involving my brother results in:

 

 

Going home involves 6 hours of flying and 2 hours of commuting. Yay, Chi-Town

 

On the up side, my New Year's will involve copious amounts of alcohol, so I'll quit complaining.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, folks.

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Wide Open Spaces

I've always thought cities were weird places

The forced juxtaposing of natural and man-made strikes me as creepy

 

I read a book once about 19th century Viennese city planning and how architects thought that adding "natural spaces" to the city would make people feel saner by making them feel free

Add all the trees you want; I still feel like I'm in a prison

Something's just not right. It's too rigid, too...perfect. Like spray-on tans or porcelain veneers

Sometimes, if I squint, I can block out the cars and the buildings and I can feel the wind on my face and hear leaves rustling and I almost feel like I'm back out west under an open sky

Sooner or later, though, you have to snap out of it

You have to content yourself with stone flowers and glass waterfalls

...and Marilyn.

 

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Stop. Movie Time.

As I spent the first month and a half of my new life in Chi-Town completely and utterly alone, I felt in necessary to engage in a lot of soul searching coupled with tantric meditation and facilitated by lots of tiny aromatherapy candles.

And by that I mean I went to the movie theater alone.  A lot.

I don’t know about you guys, but before I moved here, I had never gone to the movie theater alone before.  When I went with a group of friends or on a date back home, I’d look at those sad lonely losers, sitting quietly in seats far from other people, glancing forlornly at the happy groups of people around them.  Poor schmucks.

But then, when I got here, and the days were blistering hot and I had nothing to do all day except lie in bed, I decided to head to the well air conditioned movie theater and kill a few hours before I could go to sleep.  So I made the long bus ride to the city center, bought an expensive ticket and saw a movie.

Then I went back next week.

And then a few days after that.

Holy crap.  Seeing movies alone is the best thing in the world.  No one makes you talk to them during the commercials before the previews start.  The previews are twice as amazing as usual.  And during the movie, no one laughs if you get startled and jump a little bit, which is always a problem for me, even during kid movies.

Anyway, all that to say, lonely movie going is awesome and you should try it.  Here are a few I’ve seen lately:

You might be thinking Seth Rogen can’t hack it in a drama.  You might be right.  But he can hack it in a dramedy.  This was a surprisingly touching film, and I admit, I even cried a little bit.  And that’s saying something, because I’m not a crier.  On a creepier note, this made me want to kidnap Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  I’d probably ask him to wear a wig or something, though.

OK, you look at reviews, and you read, “Too complicated!”  “Convoluted plot!”  Obviously, those critics are morons, because I am completely dense and I knew what was going on.  This was probably one of the better movies I’ve seen all year.  The younger actors were especially good; I mean you know you’re going to get great performances out of Ciaran Hinds and Helen Mirren, but the younger folks proved they could match them like…act for act…or whatever.  Good story.

When I was little, I became obsessed with the Planet of the Apes series.  I wanted to own a gorilla and maybe marry Charlton Heston.  I don’t know why.  As you could probably tell from this entry, I get obsessed with weird things.  When I heard they were making a revised Planet of the Apes, I was all over it.  This movie was weird…in a good way.  But I must say, the best actors were the monkeys.  James Franco has always struck me as a bit of a douche, so seeing him lose screen time to a CGI chimp really made this movie worth it.

Funniest movie I have seen in a long, long time.  Bar none.  That is all.

Who doesn’t love a good epidemic movie that gets you scared enough to consider getting a flu shot?  THIS girl.  I have a sneaking suspicion that this whole movie was made to make people buy more over the counter drugs.  Shove it up your ass, mega-pharm.  I’m probably a person who would have gotten herself infected early on so I could build up immunity.  And then I would be the last person alive and I could see movies alone all the time.  Anyway.  Matt Damon and Kate Winslet were in it, and I would marry both of them in a small civil ceremony in Amsterdam, so it makes no difference as to how little I liked the actual film.

Seen any good ones lately?

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