Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Making a Better Beginning

Went right into taking down the Christmas decorations after breakfast this morning. I wasn't really feeling in the holiday spirit anymore after my difficult New Year's weekend, and I'd like to get to the cleaning sometime. Did all the little bits and bobs and display items this morning, like Holly the porcelain doll in the living room and the mini-trees and resin Santa in the bedroom. I need to either clear out a few things next year, or maybe move a few things to other boxes. The plastic container I put them all in was bulging when I was done, to the point where I barely got it closed.

Cheered myself up with Hey There, It's Yogi Bear while I worked. Yogi's sent to the San Diego Zoo after his bargaining backfires and Ranger Smith thinks he wants to go. He manages to trick another bear into going in his place. His girl Cindy gets herself into trouble so she can be with him, but she's sent to the St. Louis Zoo. Yogi and Boo Boo go after her...which leads to a wild chase all over the US, from a sleazy circus where Cindy is the star attraction to a romantic raft ride to a skyscraper high above the city.

Hanna-Barbara's first venture into feature-length films is cute if you're a fan of Yogi or their more minimalist style. While the songs are dull, the animation is a cut above their regular TV fare, and Yogi and Boo Boo are just as funny on the big screen. If you're a fan of Yogi like me or the Hanna Barbara funny animals, this is a fun chase film that gets a nod from me.

Went straight to work shortly after I finished putting everything away. (I rode my bike today. Everyone was busy, and while it remains frigid, it's slightly warmer than it has been.) We were very busy all day, with long lines snaking across the store. Not only are we expecting to get anything from 1 to 5 inches of snow tomorrow, but it's the beginning of the month, and people are just getting their money. Others are starting to restock their larders after the holiday break. I spent the first half of my shift bagging and the second half doing the carts and helping old ladies out to their cars with no problems whatsoever.

As soon as I got home, I went on the computer to do some writing. BB and Chewbacca follow a secret path through Crooked Castle that lands them in Barnaby Snoke's office. They hide when Snoke turns up with DJ, a rogue gypsy who was the one who really stole the sheep, and Hux and Phasma, who lured the others into a trap. To BB's horror, Poe, the other young people, and the gypsies are now being held prisoner in the cellar. Snoke also mentions there's one more important prisoner there, one who may still be more useful than Kylo Ren claims...

Broke at 5:30 to start putting the bears and stuffed animals under the tree away. That went so well, I did the rest of the tree after dinner. Was able to put everything away but the tree itself. It was nearly 8 PM by the time I got the lights down and the star in the plastic container. I'll take down the tree and the remaining Christmas decorations tomorrow morning.

Watched On Moonlight Bay as I wrapped and packed bears and ornaments. Doris Day headlines this sweet musical as Marjorie, a baseball-loving tomboy in the 1910's whose family has just moved into a larger house in a fancier neighborhood. The boy next door here is no boy, but a collegiate name Bill (Gordon MacRae) with some very strong views about marriage and the working man. She falls hard for him and tries to learn dancing and more "proper" manners...but his liberal opinions upsets her stuffy banker father (Leon Ames). Mr. Winfield would rather see Majorie with the steady but dull Hubert (Jack Wakley). Meanwhile, mischievous little brother Wesley (Billy Gray) causes all kinds of trouble, some helpful (driving the boring Hubert off), some not so much (accidentally spreading a rumor around town that his father is an abusive drunk).

The first of two nostalgic musicals about the Winfield family featuring Day as the eldest daughter. If you love other tales of families in the early 1900's like Meet Me In St. Louis and Summer Magic, you may enjoy this one as well.

Finished the night with one of several winter-themed animated specials I own, Frosty Returns. Despite being frequently paired with the Rankin-Bass Frosty the Snowman, it's not a true sequel. Here, a slightly hipper Frosty (John Goodman) has to dodge a greedy old businessman (Brian Doyle Murphy) with the help of a magic-loving little girl and her nerdy best guy friend. A tiny Johnathan Winters narrates. Not a great special, but it does have it's virtues, including a fun cast and a slightly more up-to-date tone than most animated specials usually have.

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