I’m not on social media anymore, but I hear things. Right now on Twitter there’s a hashtag game – #fav7films, one that everyone seems to be participating in – where you list your favorite movies. You’re supposed to name just 7 but, to quote Ralph Wiggum on The Simpsons, that’s unpossible! Since this is my site and I can do more than 140 characters, here’s my 20.
It’s A Wonderful Life (1946) Miracle on 34th Street (1947) L.A. Confidential (1997) Three Days of the Condor (1975) Back to the Future (1985)
North By Northwest (1959) Rio Bravo (1959)
Out of Sight (1998)
The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) You’ve Got Mail (1998) Singin’ in the Rain (1952) Saboteur (1942) The Big Heat (1953) Ocean’s 11 (2001) Tequila Sunrise (1988) Swingers (1996) Goldfinger (1964) Quiz Show (1994) Hard Eight (1996)
That’s right, You’ve Got Mail. You wanna make something of it?
BREAKING NEWS: Pumpkin spice has shown up at the supermarket.
This isn’t right. You shouldn’t eat or drink pumpkin spiced things when it’s 90 degrees and humid and the kids haven’t even started school yet. Pumpkin spice is for cold fall days and nights, for Halloween and pies you make for your family on Thanksgiving and as a treat while you’re out Christmas shopping. If you’re still wearing shorts pumpkin spice shouldn’t be allowed to be sold (I don’t know what to tell the people who live somewhere where it’s always shorts weather. Move?). But there it is on the shelves, in the coffee drinks, in the muffins and in the cereals, candy, and almonds. I’ve even seen pumpkin spice gum, and while I’m not 100% sure I think I saw pumpkin spice-flavored deodorant the other day.
There’s no one in the galaxy who wants it to be fall more than I do, but we’re not quite there yet. Having all these pumpkin spice products in the stores in August is just a big tease.
2. Classified ad for a writer I came across today:
Are you glued to Kylie Jenner’s Snapchat? Can list all of Taylor Swift’s boyfriends?
3. One other thing I hate about summer (not to bore you with it again, but it’s a hatred I go into detail about here, here, and here) is that there aren’t many food choices. What do I want to eat in July and August? Nothing, really. I’ll go through the motions with a salad or a sandwich, followed by a couple of Popsicles. Yay? There’s no joy. In the fall and winter you can eat big plates of pasta and hearty soups and chilis and big chicken dishes and breads and you can actually turn on your stove.
Hot weather is for “eating something light.” Cold weather is for meals.
4. Things I actually have enjoyed this summer: Marshall Crenshaw released a collection of his latest singles that were originally only available on vinyl (with the great song “I Don’t See You Laughing Now”); The Typewriter Revolution, a book by Richard Polt; and American PIckers, the History Channel show where Mike and Frank search the country for cool collectibles. I also finally saw Devil in a Blue Dress the other night (hey, it only came out 21 years ago) and really liked it. Too bad they didn’t make more Easy Rawlins movies.
5. I was trapped in my bathroom for a minute today. The rug outside the door got bunched up and I couldn’t open the door. Not even enough to squeeze through. I had visions of being trapped in there for days, living on only tap water and toothpaste, until I was eventually rescued and became a web meme and an inspirational TV movie was made about me.
At this point I’d probably be played by Jason Alexander.
Everything is “BREAKING NEWS” on the cable news channels now. And if it’s not labeled that way, they’ll label it “DEVELOPING NEWS” or “UPDATE” or “WE’RE CONTINUING TO FOLLOW….” One of the channels even uses “BREAKING TONIGHT,” which works as both a con to make you think the news you’re about to see is new without actually lying to you. “Hey, we didn’t say it was ‘breaking,’ we said it was breaking tonight!” The networks keep the “BREAKING NEWS” and “LIVE” on the screen all the time, even if what you’re watching isn’t breaking or even live (even during taped segments the channels will often keep “live” in the corner). I wonder if viewers know they’re being manipulated in subtle ways?
When everything is “BREAKING NEWS,” nothing is.
2. It’s the same on social media, in a way. Every single tweet you get is like a little breaking news update, whether it’s news about a mass shooting or a recipe for brownies. I was scanning Twitter the other night (I know, I know) during the horrible events in Dallas and realized I had to get off because all of the news, all of the rumors, the links, the videos, the opinions, the hot takes, the replies, the retweets…it’s all just too much. It’s exhausting mentally and even exhausting physically. Somehow, the more information we take in the less clear things are.
As I’ve said before, I’m not sure humans were made to experience things at the speed of social media.
3. I was watching All The President’s Men on TCM the other night. I wonder if today a reporter would take a selfie with Deep Throat in the garage and post it on social media? The hashtag would be #followthemoney.
4. “We don’t want to speculate…” – people who speculate.
5. Sometimes I’ll be channel surfing, and without warning I’ll find myself caught up in a House Hunters marathon for three hours and I don’t know how it happened.