Friday, July 10, 2020

Rainy Day at Home

Awoke to pouring rain and raging winds. Listened to the rain on the roof as I settled down for breakfast and Split Second. Three new contestants today, two women and a gentleman from Scotland. The man was ahead the whole time and decisively won the countdown round. He opted to take a trip to London instead of a car so he could go home and visit relatives.

Started to clean up while Blockbusters was on.  The brother team and the young woman were still playing today, and it was a tight game. I don't know how the British Blockbusters works, but the main problem with the original version of the American one is the rounds move suuuper slooow. They can spend a whole episode on a round and a half without ever getting to the Gold Rush round.

Listened to Donna Summer's On the Radio for an hour while doing chores. I made my bed, then moved the hardback children's books that were in a crate into one of the bins. Finally decided I would keep my journals and loaded them into two tote bags. I'll buy real boxes for them after I move, or use one of the bins.

Charlie appeared with a young woman in a baseball cap at 10 minutes to noon. I mostly hid in the kitchen again while he showed her around and gave her his spiel about how he's going to gut the place and widen this and redo that. To her credit, the woman asked very intelligent questions about the rent and what his plans were for the space, even mentioning she has a kayak and dogs of her own.

I also finally showed Charlie the hole in the wall in my bedroom. He said no problem. He'd tell his mother he would fix it after I move. He intends to take out most of the walls in the apartment and add insulation anyway.

Made a berry-coconut smoothie for lunch while watching the early afternoon Match Game episodes. Charles Nelson Reilly was late for taping these episodes from 1976, so Jimmie Walker of Good Times filled in for him. As usual, he whipped the crowd into a frenzy for his answers, whether they were good or bad. Richard was busy worrying that he matched Brett towards the end of the second episode, which started with Fannie making a Kojak lollipop gag.

Spent the next hour or so in the back room, now that I could actually go back there. The back room I use for storage has no electricity, heat, or air conditioning. It's stuffy and musty and gets very hot in the summer! It cooled off enough today for me to finally do some packing there. I loaded more things to go to Goodwill into one bin, odds and ends into another. Brought some of the bins in the back room out to the living room to label them. Taped and labeled a box that held my scrapbooks and a few other back room items.

Watched Dragonwyck as I worked, and later after I'd settled down with a snack and my crocheting. This Gothic thriller from 1946 starts with Connecticut farm girl Miranda Welles (Gene Tierney) going to work as a governess for the daughter of her cousin Nicholas Van Dyne (Vincent Price) at his huge old house in the Catskills Mountains in New York. Miranda is dazzled by the massive house and all its splendor at first, but things are far from glamorous in the Van Dyne family. Nicholas is estranged from his shallow older wife Johanna (Vivienne Osborne) who couldn't produce a son, and his daughter doesn't really love either of his parents. He owns all the land worked by the farmers in the area, but they're tired of giving him tributes for land they don't own and are in the midst of rebelling.

Dr. Jeff Turner (Glenn Langan) is on the farmers' side, especially after he sees Nicholas evict a tenant at his 4th of July party for not paying the rent-tribute and then accuses him of murder. Nicholas agrees to be lenient in exchange for Jeff checking on Joanna, who has a cold. Joanna dies suddenly that night after eating cake, leaving Nicholas free to marry Miranda. Miranda assumes she should be happy, but Nicholas is still determined to have a son...and there's talk of a curse on the family that revolves around an ancestor and her harpsichord that only the family can hear play on its own...

Typical Gothic romance enlivened by an excellent performance by Price as the "patroon," head of his household, who wants so badly to have an heir and continue his family's line and their way of life, he descends into madness when he's threatened with the loss of both his son and his traditional home. Tierney does the best she can with a thankless character, especially later when Miranda begins to realize there's something not quite right about her new husband. There's some great sets and costumes too that ably recreate the Catskills, New York, and rural Connecticut of the early Victorian era.

If you have a soft spot for Gothic thrillers like me or are a fan of Tierney or Price, you'll want to give this moody supernatural tale a look.

Switched to Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood as I dragged more bins from the back room into the living room. As I recall well from being the oldest in a family with four kids, "Playtime Is Different" when you have baby siblings. Daniel wants to play restaurant with O and Katerina, but Margaret upsets their table. They have to find a way to include her in their game. Likewise, "The Playground is Different With Baby." Daniel, Prince Wednesday, and Miss Elaina find a way for Margaret to take part in their playground circus.

Went back to Buzzr as I packed the cast-iron pizza pan and the crock pot in one crate and plastic containers of flour in another. I think I've seen today's Tattletales episode. Singer Nancy Sinatra and her husband Hugh Lambert, and actor Robert Blake and his shy wife Sondra were today's big winners. A woman beat both the guys on Press Your Luck, getting only one whammy and big wads of cash. Her adorable little son and his buddy came out to congratulate her after she won! They were too precious.

Worked on writing for a while after dinner, or actually re-writing. I took out their encounter with Ira after leaving the basement and let them all split up in the basement instead. I also made it clearer that Gene sent Brett's sons to his wife Helen to be taken care of by sympathetic people in Televisa City. Meanwhile, Ira is about to run Gene through in the ballroom when familiar voices are heard by the chandelier...

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Since it was cool enough to really cook, I sauteed boneless chicken thighs in a sauce made from salsa, apple cider vinegar, and chicken stock. Had it with steamed snap peas and deliciously sweet corn on the cob.

Match Game went to 1977 this evening, as Richard teased Brett about her wig being inside-out. Sale of the Century also crowned a new champ. Everyone bought something today, but the younger man blasted through the speed round and got the bonus round with one second left.

Finished the night after a shower with original Nutty Professor at Crackle. Professor Julius Kelp (Jerry Lewis) is a nerdy chemistry teacher at a college who isn't popular with anyone but his sympathetic student Stella Purdy (Stella Stevens). Hoping to finally find the courage to deal with football-playing bullies and the school's intimidating dean (Del Moore), he first attempts to beef up his muscles at the local gym. When that doesn't work, he concocts a formula that turns him into super-suave Buddy Love (Lewis), a handsome, chain-smoking, girl-chasing crooner. The crowd at the students' hang out The Purple Pit thinks Buddy's piano performances are to die for, but Stella finds him more obnoxious than charming. Kelp keeps taking the formula, hoping to charm her and everyone around him, but it continually wears off at the most embarrassing moments. Kelp doesn't know what to do when he and Buddy are invited to the prom at the same time...but he finally takes the opportunity to teach everyone at the school that human chemistry has less to do with formulas and potions and more with being yourself.

A lot of this version hasn't dated well at all, from Buddy Love's chain-smoking hyper-masculinity to the way all of the women are treated (even by men other than Buddy). There are some things to recommend it, starting with Lewis' adorable performance as Kelp and the rainbow sets and outfits on the students. Younger folks might want to go to the updated Eddie Murphy movie first, but those who grew up seeing this one on cable and video and major fans of Lewis' will want to check it out.

Thursday, July 09, 2020

Hot Times In the Summer

Woke up a bit earlier than I have been lately. Put on Molly of Denali while eating breakfast. Molly and Tooey's new amphibian friend is "Froggy of Denali" when they find a wood frog sitting alone on a road during the spring thaw. They dub it "Bandifer" due to the bandit-like rings on its eyes and take it home to keep it warm until spring kicks in. They need to do a lot of research in a book on frogs to find out what Bandifer eats and what kind of home she likes. "Molly Mabray and the Mystery Stones" takes the duo to Sitka to visit Molly's Grandpa Nat. The kids want to see petroglyphs - markings left in rocks by their ancestors - on the beach, but all they get are wet shoes. Grandpa not only teaches them about harvesting sea cucumbers, but how many things can be revealed at low tide.

Returned to Buzzr as I cleaned up the breakfast dishes. Three new contestants battled it out on Split Second today. The one guy, a hip music video producer, and one of the women were back-and-forth the whole time, but he finally got ahead in the Countdown Round. He became only the second person I've seen hit the car on his first try in the bonus round, too.

He wasn't the only one who went home a champ. The mother-daughter team that's dominated Blockbusters for the past few weeks ended their run with another win on the Gold Rush round and 120,000 dollars all together. They'd just started another game with a new solo lady and brother pair as the show ended.

Headed out to run errands shortly after Match Game started. First stop of the day was the laundromat. I picked the right day to do it. There was one other person inside when I arrived. I got my change, dropped my laundry in the washer, and moved on. Family Dollar wasn't busy, either. My laundry detergent is almost empty; grabbed a smaller yellow Tide. They're also out of their store-brand sugar. I just grabbed Domino's. Also got a Bubbly lime sparkling water.

Though the laundromat remained quiet when I got back in, I still sat outside in the shade. For all the heat and humidity, it was still nicer than inside. Worked on my story notes and only went in to switch my load to the dryer and throw it back into the laundry bag. Even with towels to wash, I still didn't have that big of a load anyway.

I finally got home around 1. Let Classic Concentration run while I folded the clothes and put them away and loaded the kitchen linens into a bag. The winning streak continued with a young man who got the puzzle in less than 10 minutes, then got all the matches for a car in 35 seconds! Alas, the young woman who won after him was able to get more prizes, but didn't have as much luck with the car.

Had lunch, then worked on crocheting while watching Follow Thru on YouTube. I go more into this rare 1930 two-strip Technicolor golfing comedy at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Follow Thru

Grabbed the trash and recycling canisters as soon as the movie ended, then went down to the backyard to use the hose. The trash can and recycling canisters desperately needed to be scrubbed. I'd put it off for way too long. I normally do them in mid-late May, but that's when I broke my elbow. My elbow now moved well enough to scrub into the plastic vessels and get all the gunk off. It took me about 20 minutes.

Left the canisters to dry on the porch, then went inside for more crocheting and Buzzr. Mitzi McCall and Charlie Brill came from behind today to be the big winners on Tattletales, even after getting into their second big shouting match of the week. We also had a new winner on Press Your Luck. The woman and previous champ got three whammies each. The new champ got none, and a sailboat and one of those "Selectavision" disc-video machines in the bargain.

Worked on writing for a while after the show ended, or really re-writing. Wanted to make the end duel between Richard and Ira more dramatic, so I went back and eliminated Richard getting hurt before he's drained of his energy in the Beauty and the Beast segment. Charles arrives in time to see Ira's men corral the others, throw a net on Orson (Bean) the troll, and take Gene's wand. Ira is about to run the older wizard through when they hear a call from the ceiling...

Broke for leftovers at 6:30. Soap star Rosemary Forsyth joined Gene, the regulars, poet and comedian Nipsey Russell, and sweet Joyce Bulifant for a Match Game episode from 1977 that included jokes about toupee soup and Gene utterly insisting on kissing the "new kid on the block." Sale of the Century crowned a new champ when the kid from yesterday and the other man tied on the speed round. It came down to the other man knowing who wrote Uncle Tom's Cabin. He, too, had less luck winning the bonus round.

Finished the night on Tubi with the stop-motion early 60's fantasy Jack the Giant Killer. Young farmer Jack (Kerwin Matthews) bravely rescues the Princess Elaine (Judi Meredith) from the fearsome one-eyed, horned giant Cormoran. King Mark (Dayton Lummis) is delighted to have his daughter home, but he's also concerned for her welfare. Pendragon (Torin Thatcher), the wicked wizard who tried to capture her, will do anything to get the throne. He sends Jack to take her to a convent, only for the two to fall in love.

Pendragon's evil witches capture Elaine and turn her into a witch. Jack wants to follow them, but the crew refuses and throws him and the little boy Peter (Roger Mobley) overboard. They're rescued by the hearty Viking Sigurd (Barry Kelly) and the rhyming leprechaun (Don Beddoe) he keeps in a bottle. Jack uses his wishes from the little fellow to get him to Elaine...but he isn't aware of Pendragon's treachery. Jack will have to rely on his own wiles and the unusual magic of the rhyming imp to free him and his friends from Pendragon's hideous giants and terrifying sorcery.

Rose used to love stuff like this in the 80's. She was a big fan of the Sinbad Ray Harryhausen movies when we were kids. So was Dad. I think I appreciate these more as an adult. The dialogue may be cheese, but the actors are obviously having fun, and the stop-motion is actually pretty well-done for the time, especially the giants and the sea monster who fights one off. A lot of fun if you love fairy tales or other Ray Harryhausen films of the 1960's and 70's.

(Wikipedia mentions that some copies of this turn it into a musical. Tubi's print had no music besides the background scoring; I'm guessing it's the original version.)

Wednesday, July 08, 2020

Shattered Heat

I slept so late today, by the time I was having breakfast, the first round of Match Game was running on Buzzr. In these episodes from 1976, the young woman contestant wore a whistle around her neck to call for help, but Gene kept grabbing at it and blowing on it. The first show also demonstrated just how fed up Richard was getting by this point after he and producer and judge Ira Skutch got into an argument over the differences between a life vest and a life preserver.

Headed out around quarter after 1 to run errands. Wanted to take some smaller boxes and bags to the new place on my own. Grabbed the boxes in my bedroom with the Star Wars action figures and the desk supplies, the Muppet bag with the Star Wars 12-inch figures and stuffed dolls, the clear vinyl bag with the accordion folders, the key-shaped wooden key holder I used to hold my headbands, and the metallic red vase Keefe gave me for Christmas almost 15 years ago.

I didn't have too many problems getting everything to Hillcrest. The vinyl bag kept slipping and I had to hold onto the vase, but I stayed on the road to reduce bumping. I was even careful when I pushed the cart over the segment of the road they still haven't finished yet.

I'd just pulled it onto the sidewalk and was starting down to the apartment when the vase slid off the top of the Muppet bag and crashed onto the ground! I couldn't believe it. First of all, I thought that vase was made of metal, not breakable stone, or I would have wrapped it. Second, I loved that vase. I was so upset! And I don't think I could get the pieces together again, either. Couldn't even clean all of them off the sidewalk. I didn't have a broom on me.

(Jodie called later and said a neighbor saw me crying on the sidewalk. I told her to warn the lady about the mess still left there.)

After all that (and a lot of shoving on the front door), I did manage to get everything else into the apartment. The living room floor was lined with the boxes and suitcase Craig and Khai left on Monday. I moved the box with the mugs to the kitchen before anything else got broken, and set the broken shards of the vase there too. Left all of my boxes and bags in the front bedroom.

Next stop was Dollar General. I wanted more bins. They had plenty, in all shapes and sizes. I bought three of the smaller gray ones. Also wanted sugar and another spray bottle of cleaning vinegar, but they were out of them.. Ended up with Pine-Sol instead; I'll get sugar at Family Dollar tomorrow. (And they're still low on toilet paper and paper towels, unlike the Acme, which is almost restocked.) Grabbed a Powerade for the long walk home and a pecan roll for a treat.

It got crazy hot again today, up to 95 according to the digital sign at Oaklyn's City Hall. While it was sunny, it remained hazy, humid, and still, with little breeze. Surprisingly, there were quite a few people out and about, mainly people walking dogs or kids on bikes or out strolling with their buddies. I held on tight to the bins this time as I headed home.

As soon as I got in, I wiped the bins down with the vinegar. Had a quick fruit, peanut butter, and yogurt lunch while watching Super Password. Nathan Cook and Elaine Joyce continued their run with one helping their contestant with the Super Password bonus round...but no one had much luck with that CaShword mini-game!

By the time Tattletales was on, I'd finished eating and was making the bed. Rona Barrett and her husband started out well with the questions, but the big winners today were long-time married couple (and then-stars of the medical drama Emergency!) Julie London and Bobby Troupe. At one point, Charlie Brill got so mad over something Mitzi McCall said, he came around to the front and yelled right at her monitor!

Charlie arrived as I was washing the dishes and watching Press Your Luck. (I can see the TV from the kitchen.) This time, he lead a big, broad-shouldered man through, probably one of his friends from downstairs. He gave him the same spiel he gave the two young women about how he's going to tear out walls, widen the kitchen and bathroom, add more closets, and put in insulation. The gentleman seemed interested, though not with the enthusiasm of the ladies.

(Charlie called me later in the evening. He wants to bring around one more person to look at the apartment on Friday at noon. That's fine by me. I didn't really have a lot of plans for Friday, especially since it looks like we're finally going to get some rain. He also said he'd talk to his mother and explain about fixing any holes or damage after I left.)

Worked on writing after they left. Re-wrote the previous scene to have Betty and her frog friend leave after they bring Charles and Brett to the ballroom. Betty's hoping to get more help from elsewhere in the castle. Meanwhile, Richard is holding is own in his duel with Ira, who has finally realized that "Prince Peter of Newkirk," "Robin Hood," and "Sir Richard Dawson" are the same person. He reminds Richard that he's the law; Richard angrily counters with his having taken his lands and home and trying to force him to work for him.

Richard, however, still has the wound from their duel in the Summer-Winter Castle that slows him down. Ira finally manages to get him on the ground. He's about to run him through when someone cries out in horror...

Broke for a quick hummus and cucumber-tomato salad dinner at 6:30. One of today's contestants on an episode of Match Game from 1977 bore a striking resemblance to a somewhat older Cindy Williams. She said she'd lost 71 pounds with a weight-loss group and now did speaking for them. She didn't do quite as well at the game, though. Brett didn't do so hot either, writing down an answer when she'd already been matched. Charles scolded her for that!

Moved onto packing up my remaining DVD boxes, the DVD player, the porcelain Lifesavers candy holder (which went into a sock without a match), the wooden E Linda Young sent me a while ago, and most of the crossword, coloring, and crocheting books after dinner. There was a tight race on Sale of the Century tonight. One woman bought both Instant Bargains and got close, but the only guy beat her in the speed round. He just barely missed the bonus round, though.

Finished the night online after a shower with Snow White at the Kanopy library site. This 1955 German version is about as traditional as they come. The queen attacks Snow White three times, not once, and Snow White awakens because one of the dwarfs drops her glass coffin, not because the prince kisses her. Interesting how they dealt with the queen in the end, too. The copy that Kanopy currently has isn't dubbed, but it does have captioning, and I was able to get the gist of what was going on.

The Muppet Babies did a version of Snow White in their original show, too. "Snow White and the Seven Muppets" from the second season has the kids wanting to put on their own version of the fairy tale after seeing a play with Nanny. Piggy is livid that Skeeter ends up playing Snow White and she gets the Wicked Queen role and does everything she can to sabotage her performance.

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Happy Feet and Sweet Treats

Began the day with sleeping in again, this time without interruption. Watched an episode of the 2003 Strawberry Shortcake during breakfast. "Angel Cake In the Outfield" brings the fussy mini-baker out to join her friends playing ball. Angel Cake insists on perfection in all things...including her baked goods and her games. When she keeps making mistakes and falling over, she quits, taking her ball with her. Toddler Apple Dumplin' and her pet Apple Ducklin' finally show her that the best part about games is having fun and doing our best, not doing everything right the first time.

Spent the next hour or so paying bills. Finally joined Cooper Hospital's website after several doctors and secretaries suggesting it to me for the past month and a half. To my surprise, the bill wasn't the 15 they had listed, but 92! The figures for my second X-rays must have just come in. Good thing I also got my disability money today, and more than I thought (though not as much as last time).

After I got off, I made my grocery list, then called Uber. Not only was my bee-stung foot not up to a long walk, but while not as hot as it has been, it's still hot for walking. Next week, regardless of how hot it is, I think I'll just walk. I should have gone earlier. I had to wait for longer than I should have for the rides both ways, though it didn't take very long for them to get me there and back.

One of the main reasons I wanted to go to the Acme today was to cash in my coin jar. It was only half-full, but we're in the middle of a national coin shortage and I really don't want to haul even a half-full jar of change to the new apartment. I only got $5.43 out of it, but that'll pay for my laundry this week.

I'm still trying not to buy a lot of food, but there were some perishables that I'd need for the next week. Spied a container of hummus and remembered there was a can of chick peas among the ones I moved to the crate the other day. Bought blue corn chips to have with hummus for lunch. Grabbed coconut to make no-bake cookies later. Found mini mint-cream sandwich cookies in the clearance racks. Had online coupons for the Acme generic pint "natural" frozen desserts; went with a blueberry crumble ice cream made with oat milk and peach sorbet. Discovered individual packs of fish in the seafood cooler. The small ahi tuna steak had the least sodium. Restocked butter, yogurt, oatmeal, milk, and bananas.

After I got home, I made the hummus and sliced celery sticks while watching Super Password. Nathan Lane and Elaine Joyce continued their run today, doing better with the Super Password bonus round than the Cas$hword game. My hummus came out better, perfectly nutty and great with the celery and chips.

Moved on to making Coconut No-Bake Cookies as Tattletales came on. Gossip columnist Rona Barrett and her then-husband Bill Trowbridge were the big winners today, getting almost all the questions right (except for one all the couples missed). The one woman contestant on Press Your Luck won big today, hitting no whammies and picking up a stereo and a pool table, while the two guys hit three whammies each and barely got anything.

Worked on writing for a while after sliding the cookies in the fridge. Richard and Ira go back and forth with their duel. Richard reminds Ira that he hasn't always been the best lawman in the world, looking the other way as his queenly boss wrecks havoc. Ira points out that Richard should do what he's told and should have stayed in his employ. Richard does manage to push him back, but he's still feeling the effects of Malade attacking him and may not hold out much longer...

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Had a wonderful meal of ahi tuna and sliced zucchini cooked in a lemon-wine sauce with cucumber-tomato salad while watching Match Game. Della Reece joined Avery Schriber, Betty White, and the regulars for today's episode. The lady champion didn't need help from the Fame Board this time on Sale of the Century. She easily won on her own, buying an Instant Bargain and still getting to the bonus round with little trouble (which she won again).

Finished the night online with the Match Game syndicated premiere and King of Jazz on YouTube. I go further into this lavish early 30's revue that featured the film debut of Bing Crosby at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Cult Flops - King of Jazz

Monday, July 06, 2020

One Stormy Afternoon

Awoke to a ringing phone. Rose said Craig and Khai were able to come over in an hour and take boxes to the new apartment. Could I load all of those small boxes in my living room on the porch before they arrived?

As it turned out, they took almost two hours. I was able to read a chapter of The Four Story Mistake, write in my online journal, have breakfast, and put on Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. Crafting is the theme of "Daniel Makes a Noise Maker." He and Katerina are playing superheroes, but Margaret takes back the rattle they were using to alert people that they're going to rescue them. Mrs. Tiger encourages the kids to put together their own noise makers. "Daniel Makes the Neighborhood" with Miss Elania and Prince Wednesday when they want to add their own houses to a set Lady Elaine made that represents their world.

There was more than enough time to move three big stacks of boxes to the porch. Most of them were too heavy to haul with my bad arm, so. I loaded the boxes on the top of my cart and wheeled them to the porch. Cleared out all the boxes in the music area, the suitcase with my oversized coffee table books, the artwork my grandfather did that was on my wall, and one crate of paperbacks. The only boxes left in the living room are the big ones with records and pots and pans. There's also the two bins and crates with records, cookbooks, and canned food.

By the time they were on their second trip, dark clouds gathered ominously on the horizon. The thunder moved in as I finally got to having breakfast and watching Match Game. Today's episodes brought in Scoey Mitchll and Bonnie Franklin as the contestant struck out in the Audience Match in the first one, and the second had Gene laying down on the job.

It started raining and thundering hard as I finished eating. Good, we needed it. I wasn't going to go anywhere else today, anyway. The kitchen badly needed to be scrubbed. Besides my moving, I've been here a LOT more often than usual in the past month. In addition to the usual Soft Scrub on the counters, I used lemon juice on the chrome sides and faucet to make them extra shiny.

After I ate, I ran the vacuum as well as I could with all the boxes and bags and crates still laying around, then made the bed and finally got around to doing the dusting. I meant to do it last month and never got to it. I wanted to wait until I did more packing and more things were out of the house to make it easier to dust under everything.

Listened to records and the rain as I worked. The first was another rock collection produced for radio station, this time WOR FM Solid Gold in New York. Among the great music on the first disc were "Smile a Little Smile for Me" by The Flying Machine, "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" by James Brown, the original version of "Hooked On a Feeling" by B.J Thomas, "Happy Together" by The Turtles, "Dedicated to the One I Love" by The Shirrells, and "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Barry.

The ongoing rainy weather called for One Stormy Night. I've had this dreamy melange of moody instrumental jazz pieces and rain and train sounds for so long, I couldn't tell you where or when I got it anymore. It makes for a great mellow listen on a rainy summer afternoon.

Switched back to Buzzr as I continued dusting. Nathan Cook and Elaine Joyce were the celebrities on Super Password today. Nathan got that difficult CasShword for his contestant on the first clue, but Elaine and her partner had a less easy time in the Super Password bonus round. Comedian couple Mitzi McCall and Charlie Brill and soft-spoken singer Julie London and her songwriter husband Bobby Troupe split the win on Tattletales today. Both pairs made a comeback after missing questions in the first half.

Charlie arrived during the first half of Press Your Luck, squiring a dark-haired young woman in masks. About 20 minutes later, as it was ending, he brought around another young woman, this one thinner and bubbly with pale blonde hair. I hid in the kitchen while they were there, since I wasn't wearing a mask. Charlie kept touting all the things he intended to do once I moved out - tear out the rest of the walls and add insulation, tear up the carpets, widen the kitchen, add vinyl tiles to the kitchen, widen the closets. Frankly, I wondered why he was showing the women around if he intended to basically gut the place, but they both seemed to really like it.

Worked on writing for a few hours after they left. Betty leads Charles and the frog back into a chaotic ballroom that's filled with nobles and trolls fighting and slipping on cream pies. Betty joins the fray as crowds-phobic Charles hides in an alcove. He has a great view of the mess...including Richard's big duel with Ira...

Broke to make scrambled eggs with farm-fresh cheddar, baby bok choy, and mushrooms for dinner. Country star Mel Tills continued on Match Game, and even got to sing a bit of his big hit, "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town." Meanwhile, Gene's door slammed in his face, and he and Richard Dawson shared a hug later after the Audience Match.

The woman champion from Friday on Sale of the Century had her work cut out for her keeping up with a cherubic younger man, especially in the beginning. In the end, she got two cash cards on the Fame Game that pushed her ahead in the speed round. This time, she was able to win the bonus round with seconds to spare.

Finished the night after the shower with a couple of nostalgic TV shows. Charlie's Angels jump into the world of Playboy-style men's clubs and magazines in "Lady Killer" when two waitresses at the club who were about to become centerfolds are found murdered and with their hair cut off. Jill dons the furry ears and tail as one of the "Feline" waitresses, Kelly poses as a singer, and Sabrina romances the Hugh Hefner-esque owner of the Feline Magazine empire to find out who's after his clubs and who wants these women dead.

The original Ducktales and its remake can be found at Disney Plus. I went with the original tonight, which I haven't watched in ages. Uncle Scrooge hopes to turn a crumbling castle into "Hotel Strangeduck," the most glamorous resort in Europe. He gets a lot more atmosphere than he bargained for when the first guest list includes a countess who seems very interested in looking for secret passages...and a ghost who is more than a little interested in the castle's original owner, an eccentric scientist.

Sunday, July 05, 2020

Independence From Perfection

Started off a hazy and hot morning with blueberry pancakes for breakfast and Buzzr. Today was Buzzr's "Red, White, and Bloopers" marathon. Every episode they ran today had some kind of glitch or gaffe. As I mentioned back in May, Match Game had more than its fair share, from a jammed turntable in 1977 that went the wrong way to the "magic toaster" that held Gene's questions forever sliding out of his reach. The nighttime syndicated shows could get even wilder. An episode in 1980 had cue card writer Roger Dobkowitz spell "parachute" wrong, then ended with Dick Martin chasing after Elaine Joyce in her slinky red dress.

Spent most of the day packing. I found plastic utensils I bought at Dollar Tree years ago; put them out and dropped the metal ones in the largest box Rose gave me yesterday, along with other kitchen supplies I won't need. The metal coffee can I kept my colored sugar and gel tints in was rusty and dirty. I cleared out any sugars that were almost empty and moved all my cake decorating supplies to a large plastic container. Loaded canned goods into a crate after I managed to yank the crate out from under the bed. (It was holding up the broken part of my bed frame. I arranged the one holding the other part of my bed frame so it could hold both.)

Made a blackberry smoothie during Match Game PM, then relaxed and worked on crocheting while watching Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour. This episode had one of the craziest glitches I ever saw on a game show. The Match Game segment was pretty normal. As soon as Hollywood Squares started, things went haywire. People teased Brian Stokes Mitchell about his giant flower and plant boutonniere, even giving him a giant plant in a pot. About half-way through the game, the X and O board stopped working. They made the panelists cross their arms or raise them over their heads in an "O" shape. Jay Leno in particular vociferously protested this, whining that he'd call his lawyer.

Worked on writing for a little while after the show ended. I was really tired from all the excitement yesterday and didn't do a whole lot. The frog is able to slide under the door out of the passageway and make sure there's no guards around. They find themselves back in the hall just outside the ballroom. Betty wants to confront Malade. The frog wants a kiss, but she brushes him off again. Charles is more concerned about finding a way to restore Brett's energy and magic.

Broke for leftovers at 6. Bert Convy was a genial host on Super Password, but he also had the habit of blurting out answers. He did it at least twice in 1985, including one episode where he got them so mixed up with his "party" answer, they didn't know where they were.

After dinner, I grabbed another box and loaded up the DVD holders and two of the boxes that fit, along with the film canister tin that stands on display with them. Moved sweaters out of a clear vinyl bag originally used for pillowcases and added most of the remaining folders and accordion holders I won't need in for the next few weeks. The sweaters went into my turquoise soft-sided suitcase, along with three smaller hangers.

Watched Family Feud as I packed the DVDs. I loved the late 80's-early 90's Ray Combs show as a kid, but I had no idea Richard Dawson hosted an earlier version until I got into Match Game. And I thought some of the contestants on Match Game had weird answers. One of the women in the Fast Money bonus round answered "Name the month of pregnancy when you first start to show." The lady said "September," rather than "first or second or third" or whatever. (Fourth was the most popular answer, by the way.) Richard literally fell over laughing. Her sister came out a few minutes later as Richard recovered...and set him off again when she answered "cuckoo" for a loud bird. It took him so long to recover, he insisted that the lady answer all the questions even though she ran out of time.

The second episode was almost as bad. It must have taken the families ten minutes to give the first answer for "Name a woman in history who was liberated long before Women's Lib." Richard, who for all his lady killer tendencies was a big advocate of women's rights, was especially annoyed. He was visibly relieved when someone finally blurted "Joan of Arc." They still only got two answers, though.

Finished the night with a couple more shows before the Match Game syndicated premieres on YouTube. Patty Duke showed off her Oscar-winning acting skills with her uncommon ability to get puzzles right on the first clue on Password Plus. Poor Debralee Scott didn't get nearly that lucky. She blurted out the final password on the end of an Alphabetics bonus round the lady was otherwise winning. Debralee was so upset, she got up and briefly hid behind the set before Allen Ludden coxed her back.

The Christmas episode of the 1978 Card Sharks had a Hispanic contestant who did very well, blasting through two women challenges despite problems with the board. The problem in Let's Make a Deal was less glitches and more the dealers weren't that great. Almost no one won anything, including at least two turning down cars.

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Unicorns and Farm Market Matches

Kicked off my 4th of July with material from my Colliers Harvest of Holidays children's anthology book. Along with shorter poems and "The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere," there was a chapter from Little House on the Prairie that depicted Laura and Mary going into town with their pa for lemonade and a big horse and buggy race. Switched to the Disney America anthology for a short story retelling of Revere's big ride, a story version of the Disney movie Toby Tyler; or Ten Days With the Circus, and "Ben and Me," about how Amos the church mouse supposedly helped Ben Franklin create some of his greatest inventions. The last chapter of the coffee table book Summer In America talks about how the 4th of July is America's big summer birthday party and how it was celebrated in years past.

Put on Yankee Doodle Cricket as I ate breakfast. Amos isn't the only mouse who claims to have shaped significant events in American history. Tucker the mouse tells Harry the Cat that their ancestors influenced the creation of the first flag and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, among other bits of history, and that Chester the Cricket's ancestor wrote "Yankee Doodle."

Switched to shorts as I prepared to run errands. "Patriotic Popeye" insists that his nephews have a safe Fourth doing other activities besides setting off fireworks, but they manage to find his stash every time. It takes Popeye having to rescue them from a rocket blasting in the air to convince them that there's other ways to enjoy the holiday. Donald Duck wants to set up the perfect picnic in front of the fireworks for Daisy in "Donald's Failed Fourth," but first the blanket, then the chairs refuse to behave. Tom & Jerry spend their holiday setting off fireworks on each other in "The Yankee Doodle Mouse."

Headed out shortly after Tom & Jerry ended. Despite the heat and humidity, everyone was out and about to do something for the holiday. I stopped at the WaWa in Collingswood first. Needed money and something cold to drink. Treated myself to a Mocha Mint Frozen Cappuccino to keep me awake for the party later in the day.

The parades may not have been on, but the Farm Market was. It was busy, but not as much as I expected, possibly because it was quarter after 11 by the time I got there. Strawberries are gone, but I saw the first eggplants, peaches, blackberries, and Asian green beans of the season. Picked up the last three, blueberries, baby bok choy from the organic booth, and two ears of corn.

Newton Lake Park was busy this morning, too. There were lots of people out riding their bikes, walking their dogs, or just strolling with their friends or kids. Despite the heat, it was at least sunny, with a nice breeze. The light sparkled on the green lake; the tall reeds waved in the light breeze.

Stopped at CVS on the way home. Needed another drink, as the mocha mint was long gone. Grabbed a bottle of Powerade fruit punch, got in a short line, and got out. Ran into a kindly older neighbor on the way home; she shops at the Acme, and I see her there from time to time. I explained to her about my moving soon and my accident, and that I wasn't having problems with being at home.

Put everything away while running a few more shorts. Bugs is a "Bunker Hill Bunny" when he goes up against Hessian captain Sam in a battle of cannon fire and many, many doors. He tells his nephew Clyde his own version of American history in "Yankee Doodle Bugs," but it may not be accurate enough for the little bunny to pass a school test. "Pinky Doodle" wants to hand out pamphlets encouraging the citizens of Boston to fight, if the Red Coat horse he's riding will let him!

Watched Take Me Out to the Ball Game while working on that crocheted pillow case. I go into more detail on this mix of baseball heroics and soft-shoe dance routines at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Happy 4th of July! - Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Went on the computer and did some writing for an hour and a half after the movie ended. Betty leads them into a secret passage while Malade is still sputtering. They end up just outside of the ballroom. Not only do they have to warn the others that the wicked queen is returning, but Charles wants to figure out how to restore Brett's magic as well, and the frog still wants a kiss from Betty...

Finally headed out for Rose's house around 4 PM. Everyone else already arrived by the time I got there. Jodie came from the hospital, where Dad is recovering well from his surgery. Rose chatted with Craig's parents while Finley splashed in their big inflatable pool. Rose brought out fruit, vegetable sticks, and tomato-fresh mozzarella salad in cups, with individual ranch dip for the veggies and cans of sparkling water and local beer from the cooler. Craig grilled burgers and hot dogs.

I have no idea where my bathing suit is right now - it's in a bag somewhere - so I couldn't sit down in the pool. I did wade around in it, though, picking up rings to toss with my feet. The water felt great, warm and relaxing. No wonder the kids mostly had a great time (once Rose could drag Khai outside).

I'd gone to look at Craig's massive tomato plants when I felt a stabbing pain in one of my left toes. Ouuuch! I'd stepped on a bee! I was able to get the stinger out, but it hurt like heck. Rose took me inside and slathered baking soda and vinegar on my swollen toe while I ate my burger and individual cup of macaroni salad on the bench in her kitchen.

Truth be told, I felt kind of awkward outside, anyway. I don't know Craig's parents well and I didn't know what to say to them or Jodie. I felt better when Rose and Craig brought out Finley's unicorn-themed cake. We all ate the delicious yellow sponge cake slathered with pastel whipped topping, then watched Finley open her gifts.

Craig's parents bought Finley an entire Belle ensemble, from the sparkly gold gown to shoes with small heels to even the long gold opera gloves and red gem tiara. She of course had to wear everything right away. Jodie gave her a Moana costume and a straw hat to make up for Moana not having a traditional tiara. Rose and Craig gave her the coolest gift - a soft plush ride-on unicorn! Finley loved hiding in the pink plastic "stable" her new unicorn Dusty came in just as much.

After the grandparents left, I kept an eye on Finley in the living room as the rest of her family cleaned up the party mess and tent. She showed me her other birthday gifts, including a Little People nursery with babies she could put to sleep that made cooing noises. Music videos of short songs that taught toddlers manners played in the background as we played with the nursery and her new cupcake-bride doll.

Craig took me and three boxes that Finley's birthday gifts arrived in home. I took a quick shower, then joined the rest of the live chat for the first Match Game marathon in almost two months. Match Game was revived briefly from the fall of 1990 through the summer of 1991. Brett Somers showed up for three weeks of that revival, always sitting in her old center spot next to Charles. Her voice may have been raspier, but her wit was as rapier-sharp as ever. I arrived in time for the final week's worth of episodes, including the hilarious Halloween show that had Charles dressed as Superman and Brett as a little girl.

Here's the marathon, so you can match wits with Brett one final time.

Match Game '90 With Guest Panelist Brett Somers

Finished the night on YouTube after tonight's Match Game syndicated premieres with something more related to the holiday. I wanted to see some parade today, so I went back to my childhood with this vintage recording of the 1988 Walt Disney World 4th of July Parade. This jam-packed special features quick glimpses at the then-new Maelstrom ride in Norway at Epcot Center (now the Frozen ride) and the Disney-MGM (now Disney's Hollywood) Studios, along with everyone from Broadway star Tommy Tune dancing in front of Cinderella's Castle with Rita Moreno to the Beach Boys singing their then-major hit "Kokomo."

1988 Walt Disney 4th of July Parade

And I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July, no matter whom you celebrated it with or how!

Friday, July 03, 2020

The Room Where It Happens

Began the morning with breakfast and Blockbusters. The mother/daughter pair are unstoppable. I came in just as they went into another Gold Rush bonus round. The daughter only missed two questions, getting the rest in plenty of time. They were on the first round with another solo lady as the show finished.

Switched to PBS Kids for Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood while cleaning up from breakfast. "Daniel and Margaret Visit the Farm" with their parents. Daniel is nervous about riding a horse until his father agrees to hold his hand. He has to hold Margaret's hand when she feeds the ducks for the first time. They celebrate the 4th of July with a picnic and "Fireflies and Fireworks." Margaret is scared of the fireflies. Dan holds her hand until she's used to them. Their parents have to hold both their hands until the noisy fireworks pass.

Did Schoolhouse Rock while taping up some boxes. America Rock was created for the Bicentennial in 1975 and 1976 to teach the kids about US history. "The Shot Heard 'Round the World," "Fireworks," and "No More Kings" cover the arrival of the first colonists to the US, the writing of the Declaration of Independence, and the American Revolution. "Elbow Room" discusses the Louisiana Purchase and westward expansion. "Mother Necessity" and "The Great American Melting Pot" reveals how the Industrial Revolution of the late 19th and early 20th centuries brought immigrants who created new inventions that changed everyone's lives for better or for worse. "Sufferin' 'Til Suffrage" discusses one hundred years of women fighting for the vote. "The Preamble," "Three Ring Government," and "I'm Just a Bill" detail aspects of the US Government, how it was created, how it works now, and how a bill becomes law. "Tyrannosaurus Debt" from Money Rock is a pointed commentary on the US national debt and how it keeps growing.

Put on Tiny Toon Adventures: How I Spent My Summer Vacation after the shorts ended. Buster, Babs, and Myron the dog celebrate the start of summer with an epic water fight that ends with them downriver, dodging several swamp critters who think they're on the menu. Plucky begs to join his best friend Hamton as they take a summer-long trip to major theme park Happy World Land, only to discover they're a smiley-happy type of family who would give the Osmonds cavities. Shirley the Loon tries to avoid Fowlmouth's attempts to take her to a movie, while Fifi LaFume tries to get an autograph from her favorite star and Elmyra terrorizes the animals in a safari park.

Worked on packing as the movie ran. I went through the medicine cabinet after I got a bad sore throat last September and got rid of most of the expired medicines then. The only thing I had to ditch was a dicey-looking bottle of Pepto Bismol. Everything else went into three of the remaining small boxes, including the first aid items in the back room. From now on, bathroom toiletries and linens go in the bathroom, and kitchen things go in the kitchen. I also packed jeans and capris I won't need into my soft-sided turquoise suitcase.

Did Recess: School's Out while scrubbing the bathroom. T.J Detwiler is badly disappointed when all his friends at the Third Street School go to camp for the summer, leaving him with nothing to do. He ends up with more excitement than he bargained for when he sees a laser beam shoot out of the school's roof. He tries to show a skeptical Principal Prickley, only for him to vaporize before his eyes! Now he has to round up the rest of the kids at Third Street and bring them back to stop a rogue teacher from ending summer vacation and prove just how important time off and making memories are.

Relaxed with crocheting while watching Tattletales and Press Your Luck. Adorable comic couple Mitzi McCall and Charlie Brill were the big winners on Tattletales today, getting every question right. The sweet older woman from yesterday on Press Your Luck was defeated by a young man who only got hit with one Whammy and got the Hawaiian vacation he'd hoped for.

Rose called as I was finishing with the crocheting. She wanted to invite me to 4th of July at her house tomorrow at 4. She's just having me, Jodie, and Craig's parents. That's fine by me. Regardless of what's going on, I'm not a big fan of huge parties anyway.

Worked on writing for a while. Malade's about to burn Charles and the unconscious Brett to a crisp when someone throws water on her, and a frog's tongue yanks her to the ground. Betty and her frog friend came back to retrieve Charles and Brett, hoping to head off Malade. Malade tells them that only an act of caring and compassion can free Brett...and her true love is still a statue.

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Had leftovers while watching Match Game. Country star Mel Tillis joins the regulars, Bonnie Franklin, and Fannie Flagg as they make jokes about a notorious Southern California car salesman and try to help the contestant with a "Link" question in the Audience Match, only to see her strike out on her own. The young woman champ also struck out on Sale of the Century. She seemed nervous and kept jumping in on questions way too fast. Another woman got past her in the speed round and won, though she didn't do nearly as well in the bonus round.

Went for a walk around 7:30 in the hope that the heat would be gone by then. Nope. It remained hot and humid, even as the sun went down. Dodged a big group of boys eating ice cream and pizza on West Clinton Avenue and treated myself to a butter pecan cone at Phillies Yummies. That may not have been the best thing to buy today. It tasted great, but it melted fast and kept dripping and making a mess.

Finished the night with Hamilton on Disney Plus. Most of you were probably expecting this review to turn up at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. I considered it, but as popular as it is, this is really a stage show. The theater is a different medium from movies.

That said, it was nice to finally catch this one after having bought the cast album about four years ago. Alexander Hamilton (Lin-Manuel Miranda) comes from Jamaica to New York and becomes embroiled in the American Revolution. He eventually marries sweet Eliza (Phillipa Soo), one of the wealthy Schuylar sisters. Her older sister Angelica (Renee Elise Goldberry) favored him, but eventually decided to marry a rich man and turned Alexander over to her sister, who also loved him. Alexander becomes the right-hand man to George Washington (Christopher Jackson) during the war, but has a more difficult time afterwards. Despite his becoming the Secretary of the Treasury and writing volumes of papers, he has a hard time getting richer Thomas Jefferson (Daveed Digs) to listen...and then his son Phillip (Anthony Ramos) dies in a duel. Hamilton too finds himself in a duel with rival Aaron Burr (Leslie Odam Jr.), too Eliza's horror. It's one that Hamilton may not make it out of live...but Eliza knows how to make his legacy live on...

Yes, this is a stage show, but it's dynamic and well-sung, with some fine performances. It was originally filmed in 2016, at the height of the show's popularity, and it captures all the vigor and energy of one of the biggest stage hits of the last 10 years. If you love Miranda's music or early American history and can handle the language and some mild sexuality, you'll want to give this one your best shot.

Thursday, July 02, 2020

The Heat Is On

Started off the morning with breakfast and Split Second. Though the female champ was behind before the Countdown Round, she came from behind at the last minute and got her answers first. She ended up taking a Paris vacation instead of the car. The mother/daughter pair just keeps rolling on Blockbusters. The first woman they played fared better than the second, winning her first round, but they still pulled through; the girl only missed one question on the Gold Rush bonus round.

Watched some of The Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour before heading out around 11:30.  I didn't really have much laundry, but I wanted to get it done today before people start thinking about the holiday. I picked the right time to come. There was one other person when I got in. The humidity and heat may have scared some folks off, too. I still went down to Family Dollar to buy new dry erase markers and a journal, then sat outside in the shade and worked on story notes.

Folded laundry when I got home, then had lunch and did a few things around the apartment. Packed up all of the remaining pots and pans but the frying pans and cookie sheets I'll likely use in the next few weeks. Put some more soft items in bags, including the lumberjack-check flannel blanket from the chair in the music area.

Watched Stage Door Canteen while I worked. I go further into this World War II salute to the popular hang-out for sailors at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Stage Door Canteen

By the time Tattletales was on, I'd switched to working on my crocheted pillowcase.  Happily married dancers Bobby Van and Elaine Joyce came from behind to be the big winners today, much to the delight of the banana (yellow) section! Press Your Luck got a new champ when a sweet old lady just kept hitting big money amounts during the second half, along with a Hong Kong vacation, and only encountered one Whammy.

Worked on writing for the next few hours. Brett is about to kiss her husband Jack (Klugman) who has been turned into a statue when an old lady appears, carrying sweet red apples on her arm. Brett and Charles realize that there's something wrong with (and familiar about) this woman the moment they see her. She throws fire at Charles, chasing him up a tree, and finally forces Brett to eat the apple. The second she swallows a piece, she falls to the ground, drained of her magic and even older than she already is. Charles watches in horror as Malade gloats over the fallen woman...but the wicked queen has even worse plans for her...

Broke dinner at 6:30. Had leftovers while watching Match Game. With George having been defeated by a sweet young woman in the previous episode, the panelists now have to deal with her challenger, a rather humorless older man who didn't really seem to understand most of the questions. The woman champ on Sale of the Century had a harder time today with a man and another lady, but still blasted through the speed round, won a pearl necklace, and won money on the bonus round.

Finished the night with Charlie's Angels. The Roku Channel now features seasons 1, 4, and 5. I went with another episode from season 1 before that vanishes, "Bulls-Eye." After a WAC is killed during basic training, Jill and Kelly join the Army and Sabrina becomes a nurse to root out the culprit. While Jill and Kelly are stuck being ordered around by a nasty drill sergeant, Sabrina has her own questions about the doctor on duty (Robert Pine).

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

The Verdict Is Again...

Started off a late morning with breakfast and The Cat In the Hat Knows a Lot About That. The Cat and the kids are "Chasing Rainbows" when the kids want to find out how you make a rainbow. A king obsessed with color asks them to catch one for him, but it's a lot harder than they think to pin down a rainbow! Cluey Louie, a detective, teaches the kids how to "Follow the Prints" and find their strawberry and his hat.

Switched to two Match Game episodes from 1974 after I ate. Gene showed off his spiffy new pair of shoes in the first episode, which Bobby Van said looked "just like his dancing shoes." Charles had a gift of a (hand drawn) candelabra for the contestant in the second episode after Richard won her enough money to buy a piano.

Spent the next hour taking down the remaining posters and pictures. I'll eventually buy frames for the two Monkees posters, the Solo: A Star Wars Story half-poster Jessa gave me a while back, and the sepia screenshot from The African Queen. The ripped and faded Star Wars posters and First Wives Club poster from college went in the recycling. I wanted to keep the beautiful watercolor Romancing the Stone poster, but it fell apart when I took it down. That one wasn't new when I found it at a yard sale more than twenty years ago. I was still in high school when I bought that one!

(The only things left on the walls are the calendars and the framed print of a Jaq and Gus sequence from the Disney Cinderella. I'll need the calendars, and the frame on the print is heavy! They'll be among the last things to go.)

Charlie came up as Classic Concentration began and I was looking up how to fix a hole in the wall. I wasn't originally going to ask him to put in the air conditioner, since I'm moving in a month...but it gets too hot up here to go without it. I rushed out the door as he was working on installing it, quickly dropping my last rent check for Willa in their mailbox on the way to the curb.

The Uber driver took longer to arrive than I'd hoped, but at least the drive wasn't a problem. I was only about four minutes late for my appointment. This time, I went straight to the x-ray table. After they took the x-rays, I went back to the doctor's room. Dr. Ramrerez came in ten minutes later and told me the elbow is healing the way it should...but that means I'll need to be off work for another month. I got a letter explaining things for the Acme, checked out, made an appointment for three weeks from today, and was on my way in less than an hour.

Took Uber down the Black Horse Pike to the Acme. Figured I might as well give them the note now while I have it. Good thing the manager who does the schedule was the one on duty this afternoon. I don't need to do a lot of grocery shopping - I'm trying not to buy a lot of stuff I have to carry to the new house - but I did need a few things. Restocked bananas (some of the last regular bananas they had), milk, yogurt, cereal, peanut butter, and conditioner. Had one of the bananas, a multi-grain croissant, and a sparkling water for a very quick lunch before I went home.

Went into writing as soon as I got home (and basked in the full-blast air conditioner). Brett and Charles dash downstairs to the rock garden together. Charles is worried that Malade may still be after her, but Brett is too concerned about saving her husband to worry. She's about to kiss the craggy-faced statue in the garden when a bent, aged figure toddles into the Charles fears a great deal...

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Had leftover chicken and snap peas while watching more Match Game. Gene shows off a beautiful pocket watch Richard gave him, while that young man just keeps rolling on through contestants, winning another 5,000 from Rich. The female champ on Sale of the Century also kept rolling, buying two Instant Bargains, flattening everyone in the speed round, and getting the bonus money with time to spare.

Finished the night with a couple of sitcom episodes. The first two seasons of Benson are now on The Roku Channel. My sisters and I were big fans of Benson and the show it spun off from, Soap, when we were really little. Benson (Robert Gulliaume) is the sensible head of the household for a forgetful, goofy governor  (James Noble) and his little daughter Katie (Missy Gold). In "Power Play" from the first season, a mysterious Zorro-like environmentalist leaves dead fish in the mansion's lobby and sludge at the capitol building. While Governor Gatiling's chief of staff John Taylor (Lewis J. Stadlen) tries to figure out who's giving the man inside info, Benson and Gatilling's secretary Marcy (Caroline McWilliams) talk to the man and try to get him to see the governor.

Felix Unger (Tony Randall) and Oscar Madison (Jack Klugman) have their own dreams of previous times and places in "Our Fathers" from season 4 of The Odd Couple. Felix claims that his father, an optometrist, knew Jack's father, who ran a speakeasy in Chicago in the Roaring 20's. Jack's father got both of them into trouble when his mobster boss sent a hitman after them!

Finished the night at Hulu with The Dick Van Dyke Show in honor of Carl Reiner, who died yesterday. "Racy Tracy Rattigan" (Richard Dawson) is a handsome British rogue who is hosting the show while Alan Brady is on vacation. Unlike Alan, he flirts with every woman in firing range, including Laura. He flirts a little too much with Laura when visiting Rob's house to work on the show, leading Rob to dump champagne on him!

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Pack Up Your Troubles

Began a hazy, sunny morning with breakfast, then worked on packing the rest of the books in the bedroom. I finally emptied the crates I had the journals in for the children's hardbacks and the Christmas books. (If I end up keeping them, I'll take a note from Linda Young and buy Xerox boxes for them.) It'll likely be a long time before I need my fluffy robe or the green knitted blanket on the loveseat; they both went in a bag.

Watched Star Spangled Rhythm while I worked. I go further into Paramount's big all-star World War II hit at my Musical Dreams Movie Revues blog.

Star Spangled Rhythm

Switched to Match Game after the movie ended. The episode I caught kicked off with a young fellow who spent five minutes relating his family history, making Gene sit down and take a rest! Later on, everyone gets some hugs after an "Annie" question on the Audience Match.

Moved on to TV Time Action for The Charge of the Light Brigade while I packed cookbooks and the children's paperbacks. Major Geoffrey Vickers (Errol Flynn) is in India as part of the 27th Lancers division of the British Army. His brother, Captain Perry Vickers (Patrick Knowles), is after his fiancee, the lovely Elsa Campbell (Olivia DeHaviland).

There's a lot more going on in India than the Vickers' love lives, though. Geoffrey had befriended the Rajah Surat Khan (C. Henry Gordon), who promised eternal gratitude. Turns out the guy has a weird way of being gracious. After the British troops prematurely withdraw from their garrison to one further away. Elsa's father, Colonel Campbell (Donald Crisp), surrenders the garrison to Surat Khan. Khan then proceeds to murder everyone in the garrison, including British and Indian families, though he spares Elsa and Geoffrey. Geoffrey intends to get his revenge on Khan at the Battle of Baclava in the Crimean War...even if he has to sacrifice himself and most of his regiment to do it.

Hoo boy. Even the movie admits in the beginning that this has nothing whatsoever to do with historical fact. All of the Indians, even the little boy Prima (Scotty Beckett), are played by obvious white people in Indian makeup, and if they're not subservient or adoring of the British, they're bad guys. It's pure Hollywood romance, though Flynn and Knowles do well enough as the battling brothers, with Olivia DeHaviland mostly enjoying herself as the one between them. There's some exciting devastatingly filmed battle scenes, too, including the actual Charge in the finale.

If you love Flynn and/or DeHaviland or old-fashioned action and can deal with the fudged history and Indian stereotypes, you may enjoy this bit of Hollywood hokum.

Went out for a walk around 3. It was a lovely, sunny day, with a cool breeze that kept it from feeling as hot as it has the past few days...but it remained terribly humid. The blue sky showed over Peter Creek, looking as green as Depression glass, but dark clouds built up over the horizon. It was much quieter than it has been, too, with only a few people out in their yards. Everyone must be at work.

There was a letter waiting for me in the mailbox. Willa wanted to show someone around the apartment at 4 PM next Monday. That was fast. More than likely, Charlie's going to be showing one or more of his many buddies living downstairs around. Charlie came up later to confirm it, and we agreed that he could bring up his friends to check it out on Mondays and Wednesdays at 4.

Tattletales had started by the time I got home. This time, Elaine Joyce and Bobby Van came from behind to win, getting the last question to themselves after missing the first two. The champ came on big in Press Your Luck and was the only one to do so. One woman got two whammies and small amounts; the other man Whammied out.

Worked on writing for a while after the show ended. Bill explains the curse on him further. He kept trying to tell the others what happened, but the curse choked him and left him howling, then invaded his entering their dreams at the Summer-Winter Castle. Jo Ann transforms their clothes into a golden town and a fine blue suit, so they can join the other party goers in the ballroom. Brett's determined to rescue her own cursed husband in the garden and separates from the others. Charles, who saw the statue of Prince Jack (Klugman) earlier, agrees to lead her to him.

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Cooked chicken breasts, mushrooms, and scallions in lemon wine sauce and had them with steamed snap peas for dinner. Enjoyed a wonderful summer meal while watching more Match Game. For the first and only time on the 70's-early 80's run of the show, two men competed against each other. George just kept right on winning, and Richard kept on helping him earn money to send his parents on an overdue honeymoon.

The young woman champ did even better on Sale of the Century. She bought an Instant Bargain and blasted through the speed round. The other two contestants got nowhere near her. This time, she beat the Bonus Round and won the money with time to spare.

Finished the night after a shower with Hart to Hart on The Roku Channel. Jennifer's much-married aunt (Eva Gabor) is the target in "With This Hart, I Thee Wed." She and her most recent husband, a spiritual guru, were married for all of ten minutes before he dies from eating poisoned cake. The Harts investigate his retreat, only to discover that his accountant (William Windom) may have been doing a lot more than cooking the books.