Saturday, January 21, 2017

All Kinds of Girl Power

I got a fast start this morning. Barely had time for breakfast and an episode of The Backyardigans. Uniqua is a librarian in Vejos, California, who really loves her work...but when a book is overdue, she becomes the Zorro-like "Masked Retriever" to get it back. The Masked Retriever has her greatest challenge yet in Don Austin, who will take his book over the border in order to keep it!

Work was a lot busier than it has been. The weather may have contributed. It was dark, gloomy, and slightly foggy all day. Thankfully, I only had to round up carts once, for a half-hour. There was plenty of help. I mostly bagged, gathered baskets, and brought out plastic bags.

My schedule next week is...odd. I work the same amount of hours, but I have three days off (Monday and next Friday and Saturday) and long hours when I do work. And even stranger, I'm off for the big open house on Friday! Which isn't entirely a bad thing. I won't need to buy the black pants they were requiring all employees to wear that day (it's more "professional," supposedly), and I'll get to see what the samples are like without having to rush.

I had a ton of grocery shopping to do today. And of course, one of the things I needed to restock was meat...which was not on a good sale. I ended up with the cheapest hot dogs they had. Also restocked white and brown sugar, canned pineapple and apricots, skim milk, yogurt, cereal (went with shredded wheat this time - the Acme generic cereal is still really cheap), cheese, peanut butter, mouthwash (buy one-get one on the Acme generic), bananas, and cranberries. Took advantage of a lot of dollar sales to grab soap, a bag of cut up vegetables, a bag of oranges, celery, and a bag of spinach.

Worked on a new story idea when I got home. I really wanted to do a straight "Beauty and the Beast" Star Wars story, but there's a bunch of ones out there, mainly for Anakin/Padme or Rey/Ben Solo. (Though I've seen at least one that was Han/Luke.) I considered doing it with Han and Leia...but I'd like to do more stories that have the Original Trilogy and Sequel Trilogy casts working together. I'm sick and tired of all the whining that one is inferior to the other, just because Luke, Leia, and Han's lives didn't work out perfectly.

The year is 1903. Social worker Leia Organya is seeking her brother Luke, along with her trio of wards, Rey, Jessica, and Kaydel. The four take shelter from a terrible blizzard in a run-down manor house in the Connecticut countryside outside of New York. To Leia's surprise, the snow doesn't extend into the lush, flower-filled grounds. Luke reveals that he was forced to stay by a hideous beast and three younger animals, merely because he took a rose for sweet little Rey. Leia insists that she should be the one to take Luke's place, but the girls won't leave their adoptive mother. In the end, the Beast insists that all the women remain.

As Leia and her wards further explore the manor house and discover its secrets, they learn that not everything in the manor is what it seems to be. The four creatures are under the evil spell of a nasty mayor who may or may not have evil powers of his own...and the oldest is familiar to Leia. Leia and her wards discover that they must look beyond the surface, of the manor and its occupants, to truly break the spell and reveal their hearts' desires.

Oh, and I've been working on a new project these last few nights. I joined Pinterest. Right now, it's mainly for story inspiration, ideas for fun with my dolls, recipes, and much-needed positive quotes. Here's my very full Star Wars Story Inspiration page, filled with photos that are either intended to give me ideas (or "feels" as fans say) for stories, or just ones that I like (humor and fan jokes included).

My Star Wars Story Inspiration Pinterest page

I continued the inspiration with some Girl Power during dinner and afterwards tonight, in honor of today's Women's March. (Which I support. I love seeing women come together, and I don't like politics and/or politicians, period.) Wonder Woman teaches the next generation, aka her teen sister Wonder Girl, to kick ass in the first season finale, "Wonder Woman In Hollywood." Diana is in Hollywood with Steve Trevor to film a morale-lifting move about the exploits of four military heroes, including Steve. Dru shows up to ask Diana to come home, but she sticks around when her older sister decides the youngest of the four heroes (Robert Hayes) bears watching. Someone has been kidnapping these heroes right off the set...and if the Wonder ladies don't act soon, their boys will be next.

Did last year's version of Ghostbusters after my shower. This time, it's four smart women (Melissa McCarthy, Kristin Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones) who get to kick ghost rear. Instead of all of them working at the same place, Erin Gilbert (Wiig) is the one working at Columbia. Instead of getting the tenure she wants, she's fired when she and her friend Abby (McCarthy) and Abby's partner Jillian (McKinnon) discover a genuine ghost in an old mansion. Trouble is, in this time of Internet hoaxes and easily doctored everything, no one believes them...except for subway worker Patty (Jones), who actually witnessed a haunting, and their hot receptionist Kevin (Chris Hemsworth). It takes a plot by a nut who wants to destroy humanity to bring these five together...and show them that your friends always have your back, even when the rest of the world doesn't.

Oooh, this was fun. While McCarthy and Wiig were the headliners, my favorites were brazen gizmo queen McKinnon and down-to-Earth Jones. Helmsworth is having a blast playing against type as a dim-witted hunk, too. The special effects are just as good as the original, allowing the Ghostbusters to interest more with the actual ghosts and to widen the scope of the action sequences. (And Slimer even returns briefly.) Look for a couple of actors from the previous movies in cameos as well (including Bill Murray and Ernie Hudson).

Biggest complaint? Some of the scatological humor doesn't always land, and the commentary on Internet hoaxes and what is real and what isn't seems a bit preachy and annoying after a while. Otherwise, I absolutely loved this. I may have to pick this one up after it's been out for a while and the price has come down. If you're looking for a fresh take on one of the 80's biggest franchises and can accept some changes, this is hilarious and fun and well worth your time.

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