Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Blowing In the Wind

Got such a quick start, I barely had time for breakfast, the tail end of the 1986 Card Sharks, and the beginning of To Tell the Truth. Gene Rayburn joined Bill, Peggy, and Kitty to figure out which of three men was stranded in a dinghy and a rubber raft for 37 days in the Pacific. Didn't have the chance to see which one did it before Uber arrived. 

Work was tiring today! This was my first of two bagging days in a row. I was all alone today, too. The next bagger wasn't due until I left at 5 PM. We were on-and-off busy later in the afternoon, which meant I had a hard time keeping up with the carts and the sweeping and checking the bathrooms and cleaning up broken jars of pasta sauce. We're having a hard time finding baggers who want to work on weekday mornings and afternoons. All but two baggers work evenings or weekends. Even Uber showed up later than they were originally supposed to after showing up right on time this morning.

At least the weather could have been worse. Windy and cool, but also cloudy for most of the day. No rain this time, only those dark clouds. 

Applied for a fairly inexpensive apartment building in Mt. Ephram, about ten or so minutes down the Black Horse Pike from the Acme, then went into writing. Brett eats both mushrooms Nipsey the Caterpillar gave her at at the same time...and they make her grow so tall, her head hits the ceiling! She's now literally bigger than the Red King and can tell him what she thinks of him. But it won't last for long...

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Had leftovers while watching Match Game '77. Gene jokingly threatens the male contestant before everyone makes jokes about what would be in a Gene Rayburn sandwich. Meanwhile, Brett misses her best friend Charles, who is away visiting family in New York, rather badly.

Started a Honey Oatmeal Cake while watching The Halloween Tree. Four kids dressed as a witch, a skeleton, a monster, and a mummy are shocked when they realize their good friend Pip who always comes up with great costumes is in the hospital. They think they see him running along and follow him to a spooky old house owned by a shrunken man named Moundshroud (Leonard Nimoy). When Pip steals the pumpkin from the Halloween Tree that represents his life, the kids and Moundshroud follow him through 4,000 years of Halloween history, learning about the multi-cultural origins of their costumes and Halloween traditions on the way.

It's rare that animated specials dive in Halloween's origins the way many do for Christmas, making this adaptation of the Ray Bradbury children's novel fairly unique. 

Finished the night online with Mystery at the Wax Museum on TCM. This horror mystery was one of the last films to use the original two-strip Technicolor process before the studios switched to the improved three-strip. Reporter Florence Dempsey (Glenda Farrell) thinks the Joan of Arc statue at the local wax museum too closely resembles a model who recently committed suicide for comfort. Turns out the model's body is among the many that have gone missing from the morgue recently. The musuem's creepy owner (Lionel Atwill) was disfigured by a fire in his previous museum that left him unable to sculpt. His assistant Ralph Burton (Allen Vincent) has a fiancee named Charlotte Duncan (Fay Wray) who is a dead (pardon the pun) ringer for the perfectly crafted Marie Antoinette he lost in the fire. He's determined to make the lovely Charlotte into his next victim, even as Florence learns just what happened to those bodies.

Creepy horror thriller proves that the pinks and greens of two-strip Technicolor could be just as useful in creating spooky atmosphere as it was in dressing up flashy musicals. Farrell and Atwill do the best here as the determined and fast-talking woman journalist who needs that story and the scary sculptor who finds a fairly nasty method of continuing to sculpt, even when he no longer can. This and the Vincent Price remake House of Wax are both recommended if you like your scares more tense than bloody. 

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