Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Warm Up the Winter

Began my morning with breakfast and more new Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. Daniel's having so much fun with his fish, he doesn't hear Dan Sr. say it's time to hit the Music Shop. "Daniel Listens to Dad" so they can get Dan Sr's trumpet fixed and have a jam session with Music Man Stan. "Daniel and Katerina Listen to Each Other" when Daniel wants to put on a show and Katerina doesn't hear, then he makes a snowy mountain on her purple castle. They learn to listen to their ideas and decide what is right for both of them.

Went online after that. I e-mailed an apartment on the border of Oaklyn and Collingswood near Newton Lake Park originally back at the beginning of the month, but I wasn't feeling well enough at that point to pursue it further. Plus, the apartment is a bit more expensive than the previous two I've looked at. Tried again on HotPads yesterday. Got the owner this time. E-mailed him to say I could see it in the morning tomorrow or Saturday.

Put on Match Game '74 while having leftovers for lunch. Alas, the last two episodes of the previous week are lost, which means we skip ahead to the week with Broadway star Michelle Lee and Laugh-In favorite Artie Johnson. Everyone asks Charles why he's wearing a floral fisherman's hat all week. He hands Gene a card that says he's "heirless," aka he doesn't have his infamous toupee. He gets everyone back for the jokes when he's the one who helps the contestant with "Get __." Richard has less luck in the next episode with "__ Canyon"...and gets soundly booed for missing the obvious answer on that one.

Headed out shortly after Richard gave his wrong answer. Work was off-and-on busy all afternoon. We're supposed to get yet more snow tomorrow. On one hand, it sounds like a bit more than we have been getting. They're saying at least 1 to 3 inches as of this second. On the other hand, that's still not a lot...and it was far warmer and sunnier today and yesterday than it has been, in the mid-upper 40's. Hopefully, it'll do what it's done the last two times we had snow and not stick to the streets.

Found a big package waiting for me on the porch when I got home. I ordered a new desk chair with Mom's 100 dollar gift card from Amazon. Unfortunately, it's not put together. I lugged the box into my apartment. I'll mess with it when I have time.

Since I ate dinner at work, I had dessert while watching an episode of Match Game PM on YouTube. Went with one from 1976, since for some reason Buzzr only runs the ones from 1977 onwards. Gene has trouble with the pop-up question holder in this one. It keeps falling and won't let him get the questions! Meanwhile, Brett's whispering answers into his ear, while Richard tries to figure out the tough Head-to-Head "Fine __."

Finished off the night online after a shower with a second season episode of Hart to Hart on Tubi. It's a "Murder Wrap" when the mummy of an Egyptian prince seemingly comes to life and kills an Egyptologist on the opening of an elaborate interactive museum exhibit. The antique dealer who helped with the show claims the legend surrounding the prince has him eternally searching for his beloved princess...who looks eerily like Jennifer. 

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

How Can I Change My Luck?

Started off a gloomy, windy morning with breakfast and Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. The finally have three new episodes at PBS Kids. I began with the rather appropriate "The Neighborhood Snowstorm." The kids are called out of school early on account of the massive snowstorm dumping buckets of flakes on the Land of Make Believe. Dan's excited when his father helps their neighbors dig Trolley out when he's stuck, but the storm's less fun after a pipe bursts and soaks his room, including his beloved Tigey the Adventure Tiger books. He and his baby sister Margaret end up at the Platypus' house, eating warm soup and playing games, while his parents repair the damage. 

Switched to Match Game '74 as I cleaned up from breakfast and packed my niece Lilah's birthday present. Jimmie Walker made his first appearances on the show this week, as Kaye Stevens runs off and Brett and Charles tease Jimmie about his funky blue denim cap. Charles gives an especially strange answer to a question about what a cheap fortune teller looks into in the second show. 

Moved to online after the show ended. Did some research and looked around for more apartments, but there's just not much there. This is considered a hot market. Two and three bedroom apartments in Haddonfield alone are going for upwards to 3 and 4 thousand dollars! They're cheaper elsewhere in the area, but not that much cheaper. One house in Oaklyn is renting for 2,000 for two bedrooms! The trouble is, I need to find a decent job and make more money to get a decent home... and I can't start looking for a job until I find a decent home to do it in.

Had counseling on Zoom at 2 PM. Told Mrs. Stahl that I'm really, really hoping to get the apartments in Collingswood or Audubon. I don't have a choice. I need something. I'd prefer the one in Collingswood, but I'll take one of the ones in Audubon, too. I wish I was less awkward and better at explaining all this to people, not to mention that there were fewer people out there looking for a place to live. How can I convince these people that I'm a good tenant and mean what I say when I tell them I'm willing to pay in advance? How can I distinguish myself from the pack? 

My family is driving me crazy, too. I appreciate everything Rose did for me and enjoyed cat-sitting after the scare with Toothless...but I want to be far away from the drama between mothers and daughters. I love my sisters. I enjoy visiting Rose's house and liked going apple picking with them last September, and I had fun with Jessa and Joe and the kids on Christmas Day. I just wish we could all do things together, as a real family, and that the mothers and daughters would just get along. They all have families to turn to, and I'm the one who most often gets left out. And I feel bad for making Dad and Rose do things I should be doing and for relying so heavily on them to make decisions and pay for things. 

Mrs. Stahl suggested sending a thank-you e-mail to Kim at the Collingswood house. I did that quickly after we got off, then headed off to run errands. First stop was the post office to send that package. There was a small line because a guy couldn't get his credit card to work. It went fast after he was able to pay. The lady was really sweet, and I was in and out.

The laundromat was a lot busier by 4:30. They were so mobbed, I ended up with a larger washer that takes longer again and was barely able to get a dryer. Went to Family Dollar and picked up laundry detergent after I used up the last of my previous bottle. At least the families and college students were all bunched up front. I largely had the back where the vending machines are to myself.

Put away the laundry when I got home, then had leftovers for dinner while watching a new episode of Muppet Babies. Gonzo loves Valentine's Day and is excited about the party he, Nanny, and the others are having, until he finds no Valentines in his cubby! He then becomes the villain Dr. Meanzo and says "Happy Villain-tine's Day" when he destroys all the decorations. The others turn superheroes in an attempt to remind him that he should have talked over his anger, instead of being destructive. Summer and Gonzo are excited about her squeaky narwhal and his potato buddy getting married in "My Best Toy's Wedding." She's less delighted when Gonzo won't let Narwhal take part in choosing any of the activities. They almost call off the wedding before Gonzo remembers what Miss Nanny said about marriage involving compromise.

Worked on writing after I ate. Identically dressed Patti (Deustch) Dee and Donald (Ross) Dum are not amused when the kids start poking at them because they're standing still. They'd rather recite their own odd poetry and remind them to watch their manners.

Checked the e-mail while I wrote, and to my disappointment, I lost the Collingswood apartment. Kim was very polite, but she said she and her husband went with someone else. On one hand, I also heard from Mary Johnson later, and she said the Audubon apartments are still available. I'll take one of them if I can, but...I'm really disappointed about the Collingswood apartment. I thought it was so perfect for me! Kim seemed to understand, and it was such a nice place. I wish I knew how to compete with the hundreds of other people looking for a place around here.  

Switched to Kiss Me Again after I gave up on writing. I go further into this bubbly early talkie operetta at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.  

I desperately needed a laugh after I got that e-mail, so I finished up the night on YouTube with another marathon. This one honored another TV favorite who passed away over the New Year's holiday, Bob Saget, with his best episodes of America's Funniest Home Videos. The premise of this hit that began in 1990 is pretty simple. People send in their most hilarious home movies and compete for a big 10,000 prize. The winner can come back at the end of the season for a chance at $100,000. Saget provides goofy commentary or voices over many of the videos. (It still runs on ABC to this day, incidentally, with another TV comedian Alfonso Ribiera doing the hosting.)

I watched it regularly from 1990 to early '92, usually as background noise on Sundays when I was doing homework or reading. By the time I went to college and had cable again during the fall of 1997, Saget was gone, and the show was now a mid-season replacement for a failed action program. I'd never seen the episodes made from 1993 to 1997. While a lot of them were corny or too silly, others, from a baby who watches a dog constantly running by him to a little boy who breaks an oversized lollipop over his head to ABC's sports commentators at the time giving the play-by-play on football mishaps, remain hysterical to this day. Saget's fellow Full House alumni made several appearances in later episodes, including a full-blown reunion in his second-to-last one. Even the Olsen twins showed up to promote their series of kiddie video mysteries. 

Honor this beloved TV dad with some of the wildest mishaps to happen to ordinary people! 

Monday, January 17, 2022

Matches for Two Birthdays

Awoke to howling winds and gloomy gray skies this morning. Even with no snow on the ground, it was still no day for running around outside. Read material from the Colliers Harvest of Holidays anthology instead. Dr. Martin Luther King was still alive when it was published, but the material from the now-seldom celebrated United Nations Day worked just as well. King and the United Nations both worked for peace and equality. Did part of Dorothy Canfield Fisher's "A Fair World for All," "Prayer for a Better World" by Stephan Vincent Benet, and several poems.

After I finished with my journal, I rolled right into making Pineapple-Coconut Pancakes while watching the first of two Betty White-themed game show marathons on YouTube today; switched to them fully after I ate. Betty White's 100th birthday would have been today, and Match Game Productions celebrated with two separate runs. 

Betty appeared occasionally on the short-lived but enjoyable 1990-91 version of Match Game on ABC. Many people complain about this one because host Ross Schafer is in charge rather than Gene Rayburn. I think he's just fine, especially dealing with his wacky celebrities. Betty certainly had enough fun, playing along with Charles Nelson Reilly, then-popular comedians Joe Alasky, Brad Garrett, Vicki Lawrence, and Fred Travelena, and soap stars Stuart Damon, Lauren Marie Taylor, and Perry Stevens. 

Betty's final appearance on Match Game had her in the original sixth "comedienne" seat during the Gameshow Marathon special in 2006. Ricki Lake hosted this series of vintage CBS game shows with celebrities playing for charities. Most game show fans complained about Ricki's hosting. I thought the panel had more fun. George Foreman in particular did surprisingly well, helping Kathy Najimy move on to the last show.  

Check out Betty in the 90's and new millennium in her final appearances in the franchise! 

Threw together a quick Orange-Banana Smoothie for lunch and made Cranberry-Chocolate Chip Cookies while watching Buzzr. They had their own marathon for Betty White this weekend. They were doing White's appearances on Whew! when I made lunch. The wild and wacky Whew! proved to be a little too unique for most audiences. In an attempt to boost ratings, they switched to a format with celebrities helping regular contestants. Betty helped get her contestants to victory at least once, and unlike the last few contestants I've seen on the show, beat the Gauntlet with time to spare. Even she was no match for a feisty little old lady who helped Richard Kline get up the board in record time!

Betty did better on Trivia Trap. This generational trivia battle also had trouble attracting an audience in 1984. By '85, they also switched to an all-celebrity format. Here, the elders-vs-youngsters format was dropped in favor of men vs women. Betty joined Jayne Meadows and her close friend Vicki Lawrence to play against Jamie Farr, Bill Cullen, and Tom Poston. The ladies wiped the floor with the guys, winning both of the games I saw (though they missed the bonus round). 

As I prepared to watch the Betty White Birthday Match Game Marathon, I saw flashing lights outside my bedroom window. Paramedics and police officers rolled one of my next-door neighbors onto a stretcher and into an ambulance. I have no idea what that was about. Heard Jodie yammering about our neighbor having a stomach virus and possibly getting Covid, but I don't think that would require a stretcher and a trip in an ambulance.

Threw chicken legs coated with Italian seasoned bread crumbs and a sweet potato in the oven around 5:30. Added steamed Brussels sprouts when they came out an hour later. Watched Super Password while I ate. Betty was on the final week of the series in March 1989. She was joined by Christopher "Mr. Belvedere" Hewett, who did quite well against her. They both lead their contestants to the Super Password round; Betty's won with several seconds left. She also got to have her revenge on the Ca$hword mini-game no one liked when she threw the question holder on the ground after losing the final game!

Finished the night online for Betty's 100th Anniversary birthday celebration. Admittedly, most of the episodes I caught tonight - Betty's first appearance on the show proper with Brett and Charles, the week with her and Allen when Gene said "I've had Betty," the PM episode where Betty imitates Charles and Richard does Brett, the syndicated episode with the blind contestant and his service dog Princess, the two appearances of Gene's daughter Lynne's dog Trotter on the show, the one where Betty makes her entrance in a short dress in flaming red and shows off her legs - were seen in previous marathons. 

Episodes we hadn't previously encountered include Betty and Richard getting wound up in Gene's microphone wire, Gene telling the panel about his trip to China and showing up in a real Chinese outfit (it looked more like he was going to drive everyone to the airport), Richard giving Gene "direction" for a question, Betty, Gene, and Richard "frisking" poor producer Roger Dobowitz, and Gene flubbing a question and putting a word in the blank.

Celebrate what would have been Betty White's 100th birthday with a collection of her absolute best appearances on the show! And while I'm probably not going to watch it, if you're a fan of the original America's Funniest Home Videos, the owner of the Match Game Productions channel will be doing a marathon of that for Bob Saget, who died shortly after White over the New Year's holiday, at 5 PM tomorrow!

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Wintertime Matches

Began a sunny morning with breakfast and the original cast album of Bloomer Girl. Evelina Applegate (Celeste Holm) is the daughter of a hoop-skirt manufacturer in upstate New York just before the Civil War, but she knows her own mind. She won't marry southerner Jeff Calhoun (David Brooks) until he frees his slave Pompey (Dooley Wilson), and she advocates the loose trousers her aunt Dolly Bloomer (Margaret Douglass) created. I'm not sure why this musical barely appears today. If anything, its themes of equality and feminism are even more relevant today. There's also some great music by Harold Arlen and E.Y Harburg, including "The Eagle and Me" for Pompey, the hit ballad "Right as the Rain" for Evelina and Jeff, and two funny numbers for the ladies of town who take to wearing bloomers, "It Was Good Enough for Grandma" and "T'morra, T'morra." 

Dashed off to work before the record even ended. Work started off fairly quiet, but it picked up by noon. Most people were either shopping for the big Eagles-Buccaneers playoff game at 1 PM, or to beat the "snow" we were supposed to get later in the day. To tell the truth, the snow was less than an inch - most reports said we'd mainly be getting rain - but it was enough to scare people. Once again, a lot of people were in bad moods, too. I was so glad when it slowed down fast enough for me to shut down and rush out without a relief.

(Oh, and the Eagles' season is over. They lost to the Bucs 31-15, and I heard they played rather badly.)

Went straight home and online, where I puttered around until it was time for the next Betty White/Match Game YouTube marathon to start. The final 1981-1982 season of the syndicated run featured some of my favorite episodes of the entire series. Betty faced tragedy in this years as she lost her beloved Allen Ludden to cancer, but it didn't effect her performance on the show. If anything, she seemed to have more fun than ever arguing with Brett and Charles and teasing new permanent third regular McLean Stevenson. 

In fact, two of the best episodes of the series period came out of its final years. Betty showed up in a brief red dress to flash her still-great gams during the start of one show. Later on, Sharon Farrell accidentally grabbed Richard Paul and demonstrated mud wrestling after they ended up on the floor, and a contestant showed off a piercing, Joker-like laugh. It was supposed to get his kids out of bed, but I suspect it's more likely to have given them nightmares. The series finale had a lady kissing a beet-red McLean despite his cold (and Skip Stevenson kissing the other contestant!), Betty quipping that she give that back to Richard Dawson, and Charles doing jokes in the opening with the mannequin used to test color levels.

Other great episodes from the final years included another Betty attempt at a strip tease after Gene and the other panelists constantly comment about her see-through blouse, McLean inviting a little girl to join them onstage and play the game with them, Elaine Joyce's own six-year-old daughter Taylor Van hiding under her mother's desk, and several episodes featuring a very proper English butler whose presence inspired Charles to help Dolly Martin improve her own Liverpool accent, My Fair Lady-style.

Join Betty for the end of the original show...and come back tomorrow at 10 AM to celebrate Betty's 100th birthday by seeing how she did eight years later in the short-lived ABC version from 1990.

Betty White: A Life Well-Lived - Syndication 1981-1982

Oh, and we did get snow around 6:30...for all of an hour or two. It changed to pouring rain around 10, and has been raining steadily ever since. 

Saturday, January 15, 2022

Soul Matches

Began a quick morning with breakfast and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. "Donald's Hiccups" quickly spread to all of his friends and may prevent them from singing "The Mickey Mouse Club March" on Clarabelle Cow's TV show! They all try to find ways to cure their hiccups...but it may take longer to cure Donald of his. 

Called Uber again. Though it was sunny and bright outside when I awoke, it was also brisk, gale-force windy, and bitterly cold, barely in the 20's. Once again, this was no day for a ride. Thankfully, both morning and evening drivers arrived in less than 10 minutes. Other than the evening driver almost ended up going up the ramp to Camden, rather than Oaklyn, both rides were quick and pleasant. (In the lady's defense, it was dark, and she said she was tired.)

Work wasn't busy when I got in. We were so quiet in the morning, I swept the store for the bagger a few times. Things picked up considerably later in the day. There's another winter storm coming. We're not supposed to get much, if anything, besides rain and a tiny bit of snow from the next round, but people were worried anyway. Maybe that's why a few of them were so grouchy, including one man who fussed over his state food cards that pay for nutritious edibles. Thank goodness my relief was right on time.

After I got home, I went straight to Hulu for Summer of Soul. Watched it while eating delicious stuffed clams with sweet potato fries and sauteed escarole with mushrooms for dinner, then while making my own recipe for Pineapple-Coconut Muffins. I go further into the story of the Harlem Cultural Festival in 1969 and how important it was to black culture of the time at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Heard Jodie ranting to someone or other on the phone while I made dinner. She's apparently not blaming me for still being here anymore - she's probably heard me talking about looking for a place - but she does blame Rose and insist that she's done nothing wrong. I wish she'd learn to take responsibility for her actions. She's as much at fault here as anyone. She's the one who couldn't be bothered to make me a lease or define me as "tenant" or "roommate" last year. She's the one who put off selling the house to remodel it. I've continued to give her rent. I'm sorry if the house is expensive, but I don't want to be here, either. I turned up Summer of Soul and finally ignored her. 

Worked on the application for the Collingswood apartment while watching the next Betty White/Match Game marathon. Most of Betty's PM episodes from 1979 through the end of the nighttime series in 1981 are familiar to anyone who, like me, is a regular Buzzr viewer. They're the ones they tend to run the most. Favorites from this round include the last time she and Allen appeared together on TV in 1980, the return of Trotter the dog (to the annoyance of Charles), a strange answer to a question about why Betty's able to attract cats from miles around, Brett's disgust at a perky 19-year-old contestant, and Betty's appearance on the final episode of the series in Brett's seat (she was doing a play).

Here's even more fun with Betty in the nighttime! And come back tomorrow for the last of the syndicated episodes!

Friday, January 14, 2022

Matches In the Night

Slept in and read in bed this morning. Buzzr was on the end of Supermarket Sweep by the time I got to the rest of the veggie pizza for breakfast. Arrived just in time for the winners to look for the 5,000. Alas, they got so close, but they missed the final question at the last second.

Let it go into Match Game '74 while I  ate and did the dishes. Gunilla Hutton of Petticoat Junction showed off her jeans that said "skoal" on the rear, predating the fad of women wearing messages on their rears in the early 2000's by nearly 40 years. She was joined by Richard Deacon on his first week, Nipsey Russell (sitting in for Charles), and goofy Mitzi McCall. 

Spent the next few hours online, checking for apartments and printing paperwork for the three I was seeing today. I didn't see a whole lot, but I'll keep an eye out. The owner of the apartment in Collingswood e-mailed me last night. I can't see the place tomorrow, but I could see it tonight at 5:30.

Broke to make a quick orange-banana smoothie and watch an episode of Doc McStuffins. Sir Kirby hopes that "Sir Kirby's Derby" will be an easy win on his stuffed "steed" Bonnie Blue. Bonnie cracks a wheel after a bad jump, but Kirby's so determined to win, he keeps on going. He gets his wish, but feels guilty when Bonnie's crack gets worse. Doc explains that everyone makes mistakes, but he does need to keep a better eye on his horse and make sure she gets treatment at the first signs of trouble. Lenny the Fire Truck becomes a "Ticklish Truck" after a pillow fight. There's something stuck in him that makes him laugh and squirt water uncontrollably. Doc and the others try to figure out what, then get it out.

Dashed off to my first apartment viewing of the day right after the episode ended. I was two minutes late, but apparently Mary Johnson the realtor only arrived a minute or so ahead of me. The owner wasn't able to clear out one of the two apartments, so I could only see A today. 

It's in a small brick duplex on the White Horse Pike in Audubon, across from the wicker store and a block or so from the WaWa and Cooper Medical office. I loved all the closet space, including a small walk-in closet in my bedroom, and there's a nice new carpet and a remodeled bathroom. The rest of the house didn't look as new. The white cabinets with the light wood trim in the narrow kitchen reminded me of the ones at our late 60's split-level house in North Cape May in the 90's, though at least the sink was new and the appliances were updated. The bathroom was even tinier than my old one on Manor. There was also no place to put my bike around back and no laundry room, though there is a laundromat in the block of storefronts behind the WaWa. 

Since I was in Audubon anyway, I rode to the Acme after I finished looking at the apartment. Ran into a lot of great sales. There's still some ice cream left on clearance. Found pints of Acme's generic natural brand and the coconut milk ice cream for 90 cents each! Dug up packs of chicken legs and thighs for less than $1.50 in a few cases. Found yogurt cups with 50 cent coupons that rendered them free. Picked up a card for my niece Lilah's seventh birthday next week. Grabbed clementines, celery, and tomatoes on sale. Found stuffed clams in the seafood section. Restocked bananas, milk, butter, lettuce (actually, escarole), pears, canned tomato sauce, mandarin oranges, and a can of tropical fruit salad. 

Mixed feelings on my schedule next week. Fewer hours, though not enough to wreck havoc on my paycheck. I'm also cashiering all week, and my only long days are Sunday and Thursday. Trouble is, three days in a row are until 7. I'll be riding home in the dark. I do have Monday and Tuesday off, Tuesday for counseling...but then I work the rest of the week, and lord knows when I'll get another day off. When will I be able to do my grocery shopping?

Mom called as I put everything away at home. She mainly wanted to see how my apartment hunting was coming. Happily told her I saw one apartment and would be seeing another. And yes, I've explained to Mary Johnson and everyone else about my situation with my finances and Jodie. I'm not the only person in that situation. People say they want nice, quiet tenants, but they go with the ones that'll pay them...and I just don't make enough money. 

Watched Whew! while I talked.  Another young man barely got a tiebreaker round as I pushed the backpack in the hall closet. He, too, had trouble with the Gauntlet, although I think he made it to the sixth villain before time ran out.

The apartment in Collingswood is on a street I'm not familiar with, and dark was rapidly advancing. I took an Uber driver. She showed up in good time, but took forever to get where she was going. I wish more drivers came from South Jersey! She took the long way around, down the White Horse Pike and past the Collingswood Diner. I barely got there on time.

Knocked on the door of the small 1910's house on the quiet, dark residential street, but no one answered. Went up the high, narrow wooden stairs, but no one answered there, either. I finally found the owner in the back with what I presumed to be two neighbors or other tenants. I hadn't realized she got home at 5:15. No harm done, she said, and proceeded to show me the big garage where I could keep my bike. The laundry room holds washers and dryers for each tenant and cabinets to hold their detergent. She was a sprightly little woman who reminded me a lot of Lauren, up to and including her hoodie sweater and the fact that she didn't have to duck down when we went to see the laundry room.

The apartment was really lovely. It too is small, but unlike the one in Audubon, the entire space was remodeled. The huge kitchen showed signs of still being worked on, with tools laying on the breakfast bar. It had been the home of a mother and 8-year-old daughter, but when the two-bedroom apartment next to it opened, they took that. The bedroom was tiny, but it too had new carpet, and the living room was a good size and had new laminate floors and a brand-new air conditioner. In fact, my only complaints are it being somewhat off the main road and there being less closet space than in the Audubon duplex. The lady was even nice enough to drive me home after I explained my financial situation and all the trouble with Jodie and Rose.

I'm still having trouble getting into the apartment. Got my neighbor to try to help. For some reason, the key opened a lock above the one on the knob. Whatever. It got me in. 

Went straight into Match Game '78 on Buzzr while heating up burgers and Brussels sprouts for dinner. Richard Dawson had a bad eye infection that caused him to wear dark glasses on his last two weeks of Match Game (and Family Feud as well). They made him even harder to decipher than usual. Not a good thing, as he was in a foul mood by this point and barely playin. The others, including Richard Paul, Jo Ann Harris, and a lady who let out a weird random laugh, had a lot more fun.

Rose called as I slid the pan into the oven. I was just about to text her anyway and keep her up to date about my apartment hunt. She's debating whether or not to text Jodie's cousin lawyer. At this point, I don't care what she does, as long as it gets me a place and calms Jodie down. I'm fed up with her ranting. It's not like I haven't been looking for a place! I've spent the last four and a half months trying to find an apartment. We're in the middle of a pandemic and living in an area that's expensive under normal circumstances.

Finished the night with more Betty White on Match Game PM. Unlike the daytime version, the syndicated nighttime show continued to be popular through late 1979. In fact, it was still such a hit, it encouraged the producers to bring it back in daytime syndication. Classic episodes from this round included the time that Gene and Richard nearly yanked a poor lady's arms out of her sockets when Gene tried to drag her way after Rich kissed her, the one with the male contestant from Brooklyn and the female contestant with the beautiful braids I mentioned a few weeks ago, the last episode on the original set with Bernie Koppel that had contestants who were so bad Charles was the only one who matched them, Jon "Bowzer" Bauman donning a giant red polka dot clown tie in an attempt to "dress up" for the nighttime show, the PM episode from the Jack/Brett week in 1978 that continued their feuding, Gene donning Guich Koch's huge cowboy hat, and him and Betty doing a mock strip tease when a contestant admitted she was a student of the human anatomy.

Do more matching in the nighttime with Betty! And come back tomorrow at 7 for Betty finishing out the PM show's run in 1980 and 1981.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Rock and Roll Matches

Began a sunny morning with breakfast and Doc McStuffins. Space toys Commander Crush and Star Blazer Zero are "Space Buddies Forever!" They even work together to rescue the Wicked King after he's carried off by a crow. Doc's crew learn about organ donations when Commander Crush has an accident and loses the screws from one of his wings and Zero offers him two of his. Astronaut Luna is hoping her new robot dog Liv will "Live Long and Pawsper." Doc insists that Liv wear a cone after one of her antenna breaks off. Luna hates to see how hard the cone makes it for Liv to explore, but it makes it even harder for her to not break her antenna again.

Headed off to work shortly after the episode ended. Pretty much the same deal here, only this time, it was quiet enough in the morning and later in the afternoon for me to get most of the outside trash done. I did get stuck briefly in a register around 12:30, but was otherwise able to focus on bagging. Helped a lady going through chemotherapy who was really tired with her bags. She was so happy, she gave me a big hug and tried to tip me. You're not allowed to tip baggers in New Jersey - it's a state law - but helping her out and making her happy was better payment than any money would have been. 

Oh, and I heard from Mary Johnson, the realtor who showed me the apartment in Collingswood after a mix-up, at work. The apartment on Bettlewood was already snapped up after just a few days on the market, but the ones on the White Horse Pike in Audubon were still available. I'll see them at 3 PM tomorrow. E-mailed another apartment in Collingswood as well later in the evening after I got in.

When I got home, I changed, ordered vegetable pizza, and went straight into the next Betty White/Match Game marathon. Match Game was so popular, by 1975, Goodson-Todman began a second show for the nighttime syndicated market. It was just as much of a hit as the afternoon version. Betty joined the others for some of the most memorable moments ever on any version of Match Game.

I've discussed Richard and the Admiral TV answer on the Audience Match and Betty and Richard playing Charles and Brett elsewhere. Other classic shows from Betty's early years on the nighttime run include an awkward and scary answer to "The Third ___" on an Audience Match that renders that episode banned from TV, an adorable twinkly-eyed older man contestant who had a crush on Brett, a previously lost episode with Eva Gabor Buzzr aired last year for the first time since 1977, a Fillipino contestant in beautiful native dress looking better than she plays, and a bubbly British contestant in a low-cut Match Game PM shirt that definitely got Richard's attention. 

Let's go into the night with Betty and the other Match Gamers as they reveal how much fun you can have after hours! And come back tomorrow at 6 PM for more of the best of Betty on Match Game PM

Finished the night with Rock n' Roll High School Forever. I go further into the direct-to-video sequel to Rock n' Roll High School from 1991 featuring Corey Feldman as an anarchic musician at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Windy Matches

Began the morning with breakfast and To Tell the Truth. Came in just as we met a man who created a football helmet that could estimate the effect of the impact on the skull. Allen Ludden was the only one who said #3, and he was right. I applauded the next one, a woman who used her winnings from The $10,000 Pyramid to start her own all-female chauffeur service. This time, almost everyone including me said #3, who was the most enthusiastic, and we were absolutely right. 

Changed and packed lunch, then headed off to work. Though it was gale-force windy this morning, it warmed up enough for me to take my bike. Bagging didn't start off too badly. We didn't really get busy until the evening rush hour. After about 2-2:30, I couldn't keep up with the sweeping and the carts and putting away perishable items people didn't want and rounding up the trash and recycling and checking the bathrooms to make sure no one's been plugging up the toilets again. The carts got so backed up by 3:30, they finally sent two of the kids who were doing orders for online shoppers out to help. At least it was also sunny, and the winds diminished throughout the day. 

Dashed home the moment I could. Changed, made a quick mushroom omelet, and went straight into Match Game Productions' next belated Betty White marathon. Betty continued as one of the most popular semi-regulars on Match Game as the show moved into its second syndicated season. She was so huge, when Brett Somers took time off to direct a play at the end of the season, she replaced her next to Charles. This was the season when she briefly hosted a question. In fact, it happened when she was replacing Brett. Other memorable episodes from this season include Gene bringing along his daughter Lynne's dog Trotter, to Betty's delight, the week she appeared with then-current game show hosts Bill Cullen, Dick Martin, and Peter Marshall and future host Elaine Joyce, and Gene and Betty doing mock stripteases in response to a question with jokes about skinny bodies. 

Head into the 80's with Betty and the rest of the Match Game crew! And come back tomorrow at 5 PM when we jump back in time for Betty's run on the nighttime show!

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Baby, It's Really Cold Outside!

Started off a sunny, brisk morning with breakfast and the original Scooby Doo, Where are You? The gang says "That's Snow Ghost" when a Abominable Monster-like "ghost" tries to scare them away from the ski lodge where they're on vacation. They first meet a Tibetan man who claims the ghost is after him in the mountains. Velma and Fred think there's another explanation, especially when they make an interesting discovery at an abandoned log mill.

Worked on apartment hunting for the next half-hour or so. Mary Johnson, who showed me that apartment in Collingswood the week before Christmas, finally got back to me. She doesn't know what happened to that apartment, but she did send me listings for three others. One is in an apartment building in Oaklyn on Bettlewood; two are in a duplex on the White Horse Pike in Audubon. The one in Oaklyn looks slightly nicer than the ones in Audubon, but they're all worth checking out. 

Even as I changed into work clothes, gusty gales rattled my bedroom windows. It was much too cold and windy to take my bike to work today! I ended up calling Uber. Surprisingly, considering the frigid weather, I got rides to and from work in less than five minutes both ways. The drivers were quite pleasant, too, especially the cheery lady who picked me up in the morning.

Work was on-and-off steady for most of the evening. In addition to some people having to feed kids who may be taking classes at home for a while, today is the Acme's Senior Discount Day...and there's a senior apartment building two blocks from the store. We get a lot of people from that building who want to take advantage of the sale, freezing cold or no freezing cold. 

Was pulled two hours before finishing time to push carts. The night bagger got sick and called out for the week. Had no problems pushing carts. It was actually nice to get out in the cold air and move around. I had a lot more trouble with the trash and recycling. They were overflowing, to the point where it took me ten minutes just to get the trash out and keep it from ending up on the sidewalk. The day bagger must not have had the time to empty them. It took me so long, I was almost late getting out.

Got home just in time for the Audience Match on Match Game PM. Bernie "Siegfried" Koppel, by that time on The Love Boat, and Lee Merriweather join Betty White and the regulars for the last nighttime episode before they changed the set and started using the Star Wheel. Richard has one more chance to help the contestant win money on "__ Sitter" in the Head-to-Head.

Finished the night on the Watch TCM website with Rock n' Roll High School. I go further into this wacky 1979 Roger Corman teen comedy featuring the music of punk rock group The Ramones at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Monday, January 10, 2022

Finding a Place of My Very Own

Since my Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins worked out so well the other day, I began the morning with equally tasty Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Pancakes. Put on Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood while I ate. "Daniel Wants to Be Alone" when his friends play a noisy game and bump him too much. He finds it works to just do something on his own and recharge his batteries. "Daniel's Alone Space" is a little section between furniture where he can be by himself at home. He goes there to avoid Margaret trying to get his new Tigey book and his mother noisily working on fixing furniture in his room.

Switched to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse as I did the dishes. "Doctor Daisy, MD" treats her friends to get her pretend doctor sticker. Most of them have fictional aliments that are fairly easy to treat...but who's the big "mystery patient" under that green sheet?

Went online for the next couple of hours after breakfast and looked up apartments. I just am not having much luck. There isn't much out there in winter and with everything going on, and I'm desperately running out of time. Though I no longer saw the apartment in Collingswood I viewed last month listed as available, I called back the realtor anyway to find out what was going on there. Posted at my own feed on Facebook and on a Facebook group for people looking for apartments in South Jersey.

Called Anthony Pezzelle, who owns the apartment buildings a block down the street and said last month that one may be available. It He also had a hard time evicting a tenant. Like Charlie before I moved out of Manor, he couldn't do much updating to the apartment because they were still there, and he's apparently in the midst of other projects, too. He says to call him back in mid-February and he'll have a more definite answer. At any rate, it won't even be ready until March 31st. 

Broke for lunch at 2 PM. Watched Doc McStuffins while I made a non-alcoholic pina colada smoothie for lunch. Gablooey the goo-filled starfish returns in "Snowy Gablooey." Doc's brother Donnie accidentally leaves him outside in the snow, and his goo freezes. Doc gives him a warm bath and shows how to warm up when you're frostbitten. Sir Kirby's excited to keep Doc's team from scoring a "Gooooal!" in their ice hockey match. He initially doesn't want to tell Doc when he gets hurt for fear of letting the team down, but finally coaches solar hula bobble doll Lelaini as his replacement.

Headed out to the laundromat next. They must have been much busier earlier. Every washer was full, despite there being no one there. I ended up using one of the top-loading washers that take longer. Treated myself to a hot chocolate and toasted coconut donut across the street at Dunkin' Donuts, then came back and managed to get the last dryer. Worked on story notes while my clothes dried. 

Got in around quarter after 4. Made oatmeal-dried cranberry cookies while watching Buzzr. Saw a young woman stay champ and avoid the Whammies long enough to pick up over $10,000 in cash on Press Your Luck. The champ didn't have nearly that much luck on Whew! The eager pre-med student kept decimating all comers on the main board, only to falter when dealing with the cardboard bad guys and the bloopers on the Gauntlet run. The furthest he got on the episode I saw was to the third villain.

Unfortunately, by the time I pulled the cookies out of the oven, Jodie's voice in the den picked up to shrill and unavoidable levels. She's really upset about not being able to sell the house right away and having to pay for heating it. It doesn't help that neither heat nor air flow well in the main house, often leaving it freezing cold when the mother-in-law suite is boiling hot and vice-versa. She's also still ranting about how nothing is her fault, it's never her fault, it's all her terrible, horrible daughters' faults, she did nothing wrong, and she wishes I'd just move in with Rose and let Rose do everything and oh why am I being so mean by not automatically leaving right away?

I had enough. I've had enough of her. I've had enough of Rose. I've had enough of everything. I grabbed my new winter coat and stormed out for a walk to clear my head. I didn't care that it was literally freezing cold. To paraphrase Elsa, the cold never bothered me anyway. I just needed to get away from her drunken rambling. At least it was a nice night for it. It was brisk and frigid, but also clear, with a perfect inky-black sky.

Ended up at the Oaklyn Library. Thank heavens they're open in the late afternoon and early evenings on Mondays! I took out three books from a hat-shop based mystery series I never heard of and talked to the librarian. I'm going crazy. I've had it up to here with Rose and Jodie. I appreciate everything they've done for me...everything except actually helping me find a home. They automatically assumed the other would take the responsibility of helping me, then complained when no one helped me and I couldn't find a place to live. At least Rose and Craig turned me in Anthony Pezzelle's direction. Jodie just said "don't care, not my problem" and did nothing. 

I understand Rose is busy with raising children and finding a job. I understand Jodie has to pay for heating a large house for longer than she planned and wants to get away from the memories and a house that was never truly hers. I wish they understood my point of view. Jodie has a large family, two sons and a daughter-in-law, and tons of friends. Rose has a family of her own and is the only person in the entire family who actually owns her home. I have no one I can turn to. I don't know my co-workers well enough to live with them, and most of them aren't in much better shape than I am. My three best friends don't live in the area and reside with their parents in small houses or apartments.

The librarian finally looked up apartments online herself...and even she admitted there wasn't much out there. Everything is overpriced or in a dicey apartment building. Some of it has to do with living near two major cities and within driving and train distance of at least four others. Some of it has to do with the pandemic and the current housing shortage. And some of it is New Jersey is an expensive state even when everyone is 95 percent well. At least she listened to my complaints. I don't have too many other places I can let everything out.

When I got home, I ate roasted broccoli and cauliflower, sweet potato fries, and a leftover chicken burger while watching Match Game PM. No idea who young comic Tom Dreesen was, but he seemed to play well enough. Brett and Charles had a great time here, especially with a question asking what Q hid in James Bond's shorts. Richard had more trouble with "__ of Fools" on the Head to Head.

Since I missed the 6:30 Match Game episode and there were no marathons on tonight, I switched to a 1974 episode on YouTube while I had ice cream and cleaned up from dinner. Richard and Gene tease Fannie Flagg about her t-shirt with an American flag made of matches and her name over it. Meanwhile, Charles is more interested in teasing Brett about flirting with a young and sweet Anson Williams, and Gene is hoping we don't see how much a tall contestant towers over him. 

Finished the night with the fifth season of Charlie's Angels at The Roku Channel. "Angels Go Truckin'" when an expensive shipment of pharmaceuticals is stolen under the nose of an all-women trucking company. Kelly takes a job as a waitress in a truck stop and Tiffany and Kris take over driving the shipment to find out who the thieves are and how they did it. 

Sunday, January 09, 2022

Unsinkable Matches

Started off the morning with breakfast and the original cast album for The Unsinkable Molly Brown. The title lady is Molly Tobin Brown (Tammy Grimes), a poor miner's wife who is determined to better herself after her husband J.J Brown (Harve Presenell) strikes silver. She's "unsinkable" because not only did she survive the sinking of the Titanic, she was one of the major leaders who helped people onto the boat and kept their spirts going. While Meredith Wilson's score isn't quite at the level of The Music Man, it does have some good songs, including Molly's defiant "I Ain't Down Yet" and her boisterous "Belly Up to the Bar, Boys" with the miners and J.J's ballad "I'll Never Say No."

Hurried off to work even before the record ended. Thankfully, it was wet when I went out this morning, but otherwise not a problem. Most of the snow was even gone. I got to work on time. 

Work wasn't busy when I arrived. I spent most of the morning shelving candy and working on story ideas. It didn't pick up until 11:30...and then, we were swamped for the rest of the day. Even after more help came in later, we were still swamped. The Eagles played (and lost) yesterday, but there were other games today, and many people can only do their shopping on Sundays at any time of the year. Thankfully, it slowed down enough by 4 for me to shut down without a relief. Grabbed parchment paper and more clearance ice cream in order to get money for laundry.

Went straight home this time. It was showering a little when I went home, nothing horrible. Didn't see any of the ice we're supposed to get tonight, either. Got in with no problems other than being slightly damp.

Called Mom when I got home and changed. She called me while I was at work. She wanted to check up on me after I was sick last week. She basically confirmed that my going down there isn't as easy as Rose wants to think. Rose hasn't done anything but vacationed in Cape May County for 20 years. There's even less housing there than there is here, and it's more expensive. Mom's on long waiting lists for three senior apartment buildings and one regular one. 

Rose also forgets that she is the only person in the entire family who owns her own home right now. Everyone else is renting or in the midst of selling theirs, even Jodie. Mom says her little house in the Villas is also really beyond her means, but she doesn't have a choice. She has to live somewhere. Anny's family has outgrown their split-level house in North Cape May, too, and it's also very expensive. 

It's also hard to plan anything when you don't know what you're doing next. I tried to explain that to Rose yesterday, but I don't think I got through to her. She rags on me about not being organized, but it's hard to organize things when you don't know your next move. I do need to get a hold of that neuropsychologist, though. I have no intention of getting medication, but I do need help with communicating better and how to relate better to people. 

Hunted for apartments for an hour, then spent the rest of the night eating leftover burgers, whole wheat bow tie pasta, and delicious roasted Brussels sprouts for dinner while watching the next Betty White/Match Game marathon. Betty was there to see the New Year in at Match Game, but there wasn't much time left for the show on CBS. They were canceled that summer and promptly picked up for syndication in the fall. 

Classic episodes from this round included Betty doing a Charleston in response to a question, her being frisked by comic drunk Foster Brooks, several episodes featuring happily remarried husband and wife team Dick and Dolly Martin, Betty helping out with a blind contestant and his beautiful service dog Princess, and a cheerleader showing off her moves for the crowd after Betty helps her win. 

Keep on cheering for Betty in '79! And come back tomorrow at 5 for the remaining syndicated episodes!