Thursday, March 31, 2022

The Clouds Will Soon Roll By

Got incredibly lucky this morning. It was cloudy and windy all day, but it rained early and was only damp when I left (on time) for work. By the time I got was just damp again. It went from being way too cold for this time of year to being way too warm, in the 70's, and still really windy. 

Maybe it's just as well that there was a called-out and I ended up checking all day. We were dead for most of the day besides the noon and 3 PM rush hours anyway. It's the day before the beginning of the month, the weather is terrible, and frankly, there just isn't much going on right now. We're still between holidays. 

Hurried straight home after work to avoid the weather. Went right upstairs when I got in and changed. Watched Match Game '77 while waiting for dinner. Buzzr skipped ahead a bit to the week with Eva Gabor making her second appearance on the show and Gary Burghoff turning up for the first time in a while. A funny older lady was a sweetheart, but didn't have the best answers. The panel had more fun making use of the reverb machine with their answers for "Death __" on the Audience Match. 

The next one skipped ahead again, this time to see Gary imitate his former teacher Charles Nelson Reilly several times. Gene's happier to admire Eva Gabor's decalage in an off-the-shoulder ruffled blouse. The others did better with the Audience Match "The Way __." 

Match Game PM started off with a guy who could turn his feet inside out. He claimed it didn't hurt, but it sure looked painful to me and the panel! Brett probably wished she could twist into pretzels while trying to figure out "Smoked __" in the Head-to-Head.

Did a few Bluey shorts as dinner finished. Bingo's "Featherwand" can make things heavy. She's hoping to use it to make her family let her go to a birthday party with her sister. She can put her family into "Dance Mode" by flicking their tails. This leads to busting moves in some very awkward places, like while crossing the street. Bandit and his younger brother Stripe play "Squash" while the girls pretend that they're playing a video game and controlling their movements. Bingo is upset when Uncle Stripe doesn't win and Bluey says big siblings always come out on top. To Bingo's delight, that inspires Uncle Stripe to practice harder. 

Finished off the night after dinner and clean-up on HBO Max with Going Hollywood. I go further into this vehicle for Marion Davies and Bing Crosby at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

When the Sun Came Out

Woke up at 7. Closed my eyes for what I thought would be five minutes. When I opened them, it was 8:30! I had to be at work by 9! I rapidly dressed, hurried downstairs, shoveled shredded wheat in my face, and dashed out the door. Just barely got in on time.

After all that, work could have been worse. I did end up in a register twice, once briefly to cut down on the line, once to go in for someone's break, but I mainly did carts. We had more help bagging for once, and it just wasn't that busy. I even had time to round up the outside trash and recycling. It was a nice day to gather carts, too. While still windy and a bit chilly, it wasn't nearly as bad as it had been the past few days. In fact, by the time I finished, it had turned into a beautiful, sunny spring day.

Went straight home after work. Changed and put on Match Game '77 while I had a snack. The first one had Richard drooling over a pretty contestant while giving "Age of Consent" as his answer for "Age __" in the Audience Match. He and Gene do another bet as to whether or not it would be on the board...and for once, Gene won. 

For some reason, Buzzr skipped the next episode and went straight into the one after that. We kick off with a joke about the name of a disease that makes you bounce up and down. There were many answers...but the contestant and Brett got the best by far, to Brett's delight! Brett came up aces again when the Audience Match was right up her alley, "__ Gin." 

Had leftover chicken soup while watching Match Game PM. The show opened with a couple of gags about Charles having friends in the audience and his cowboy hat and some audience members being very disappointed that a handsome Navy man was taken. Charles had even more luck in the Audience Match with "Vacuum __."

Finished the night online after a shower and retrieving my laundry. Found The Snoop Sisters on YouTube. This short-lived NBC Mystery Movie series had two elderly mystery-writing sisters, Gwendolyn (Mildred Natwick) and Ernesta Snoop (Helen Hayes), who solve crimes with the help of their cop nephew Steve (Bert Convy). 

In honor of March Madness, I went with "Fear Is a Free Throw." Gwendolyn is the prime suspect when a basketball star is poisoned by the antacid tablet she gave him. Ernesta is determined to get to the bottom of this mystery, but the suspects are myriad. His secretary liked him, but wished he would settle down. His teammates just wanted the kind of money he made, and the team's owner knows he's the star and wouldn't hurt him. Ernesta finally realizes what's going on after realizing one of his teammates is a former magician, and that's before the basketball star takes off from the hospital.

Oh boy, this one was fun. Really enjoyed the interplay between the sisters, Convy, and their jack-of-all-trades Barney (Lou Antonio) who drove their antique roadster. It's too bad this one only lasted four movies, plus the pilot. I would loved to have seen more of the ladies' adventures. 

Switched to The Ghost and Mrs. Muir after the Password Plus premiere on Match Game Productions. "Captain Gregg's Whiz-Bang" is a nautical romance Carolyn wrote from Gregg's notes. She tried to dial down the hotter aspects, but he puts them back in. That does sell the story, but it also makes every man in town - including Claymore! - think that Carolyn is an easy catch.

All the Captain wants is to share "Madeira, My Dear?" with Carolyn, but her chores make that impossible. She's raising two children alone, and Gull Cottage is not in the best shape. While Gregg laments the fast pace of modern life and Carolyn wonders why women have to rush and have no time for being dainty, Martha wonders how she can keep the plumbing working and the roof from leaking.

Went to the Roku Channel for more magical antics from the 60's with I Dream of Jeannie.  Major Bellows is thrilled when Jeannie gives Tony an operatic voice that makes him "My Master, the Great Caruso." Tony thinks it's cute as a one-time-only trick and makes her promise not to do it again. Trouble is, Bellows put him in the Armed Forces Talent Show, which will be shown live on TV. While Jeannie agonizes over whether to break her word and give Tony the operatic singing voice back, Roger has something important to tell Jeannie...

Ended the night back at YouTube. Sid and Marty Kroft's kid show productions  in the 70's were strange at best, completely and utterly over-the-top bizarre at the worst. Lidsville is absolutely the latter. A boy named Mark (Butch Patrick) falls into a huge magician's hat and lands in a looney world where hats move and talk. The evil head of this world is the green-faced Great HooDoo (Charles Nelson Reilly) who commanded the army of Bad Hats. Mark steals the ring that has control of Weenie the Genie (Billie Hayes) and fled to Lidsville, where the Good Hats promised to help him find a way home. 

Dang, this was weird. There must have been some powerful stuff going around Kroft Productions in the mid-70's to produce this free-form nuttiness. Reilly often complained about the complicated makeup he had to wear later in life, but he did look like he had fun when he got in at as the vain and arrogant ruler. Patrick did all right as the kid caught up in the lunacy, but Hays was just annoying as the child-voiced genie. If you have fond memories of this show from your childhood, great. Otherwise, don't come here unless you're in the mood for wondering if you really hallucinated talking hats or not. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Lose That Long Face

Slept in so late today, Match Game '78 was on its second episode before I finally got going. Tab Hunter of Damn Yankees and Grease 2 and Marilu Henner of Taxi joined in here. Brett may have been nervous to answer "Shore __" in the Head-to-Head, but Tab was really nervous over a big match near the end!

Switched to Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood as I cleaned up from brunch and got organized. Dan and the other kids in his class "Play Pretend" when they encourage literal-minded O the Owl to see a box as anything he wants it to be. Daniel plays "Super Daniel" as he and Grandpere walk to the Clock Factory to deliver Dan Sr's lunch.

Headed out to run a few errands around 1:30. Briefly stopped at the bank, then threaded through Collingswood back up to Oaklyn to hit Dollar General. My hands are really dry and badly cracking. I bought better lotion than the fancy-smelling stuff Amanda gave me. At least it was a nice day for a ride, too. While it continued to be windy and cold, it was also sunny, and the sun felt warm when you could get out of the wind.

Went straight online after I got home to make a few appointments. I did finally get through to Krisloff's Eye Associates for my first appointment with them since late February 2020. I doubt my eyes have changed much in two years. I really just need to order new glasses. I haven't gotten them in over a decade. My lenses are so thick and expensive, I couldn't afford them until the last year and a half or so. I couldn't figure out the online appointment system for South Jersey Radiology and got cut off by another call when I tried to call them. I'll get them at work tomorrow. 

The call that came through while I tried calling South Jersey Radiology was Dr. Sarah Gulick, the neuropsychiatrist assigned to me. I spent the next hour explaining my long and convoluted history of mental difficulties, going back to when my mother and teachers finally realized by 1987 how badly I was being bullied and how hard it was for me to socialize with the other kids. Hitting puberty at age 9 and the constant in and output of Coast Guard students who would befriend me, only to have to leave when their parents did, didn't help my feelings of isolation, self-loathing, and mistrust. My parents had problems with their own marriage at that point as well. 

I have a hard time concentrating, especially when I'm online. It's why I can barely write more than a few paragraphs, or even sentences, of my fanfics at a time and even my blogs take me forever to do. I'm too easily distracted. I'm also very sensitive to loud noises. I jump at cars backfiring and crashes below me. I can remember details of a movie from ages ago, but often not what I did at work earlier or names or faces. And I've always had problems with most forms of math. It just doesn't make sense to me. That's why I admire Lauren (and admired Dad-Bill) for being so good at it. Dad-Bill used to help me with my math homework when I was a kid.

After I got off with Dr. Gulick, I attempted some writing. The Red King lands on the giant raven, scattering the group. He finds Patti Dee and Donald Dum's quarreling even more annoying than Brett did and turns them into dolls. The others make their way back into the Brett finds a white shawl fluttering in the wind...

Listened to Match Game '77 while I worked. I'm a bit surprised that the Audience Match question "__ On It" in the first episode didn't inspire the contestant to call on Roz Kelly, who played Fonzie's girlfriend in a few episodes of Happy Days. A contestant from Bavaria inspired several German jokes in the second.

Went downstairs for a really yummy dinner, then came back up with chocolate to watch the Judy Garland version of A Star Is Born. I go further into the second version of the oft-told story of the woman whose career rises as her husband's falls at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Monday, March 28, 2022

Harts In the Spring Snow

Got a quick start on a cold morning with the warmest breakfast I could think of. Cooked the last of the cornmeal in milk to make cornmeal mush; had it with strawberries. Checked the weather while I ate. I could hear the wind rattling outside, but at that point, it was still sunny. No snow, rain, or any other precipitation. I rode to work normally, other than fighting the wind.

Today is one of my three long bagging shifts this week. It would have gone much better if I had more help, but we're still short, especially of baggers. I had to do everything myself. This was especially a problem between 11:30 and 3, during the lunch rush hour. They kept pulling me to do other things, which means it took me two hours to get back to gathering carts. I even had to go in a register briefly so one of the cashiers could go on break. Never did have the time to gather the full outside trash and recycling.

Dark clouds started building up over the horizon around quarter of 4. As I ducked in around 4 to sweep the store, the wind started to pick up even more. By the time I was sweeping the aisles, it was a full-blown squall. Tiny snowflakes fell furiously...but they were blown away before they could hit the ground, or much of anything else. Hit another squall as I rode home from work over an hour later. Thankfully, by the time the snow got heavy, I was in Oaklyn, where the houses blocked the wind. 

(Incidentally, the squall ended shortly after I got home. To my knowledge, it hasn't done anything but blow since.)

Went straight upstairs and changed. Watched Match Game '77 as I got organized. The first episode had Roz Kelly getting a passionate kiss from an audience member and declaring him to be much better than Henry Winkler! The second had the contestant taking Richard's answer to "Julie __" in the Audience Match, even though Brett gave the most-likely answer. Yes, for once, Brett turned out to be very right.

E-mailed Dr. Sarah from Clinical Neuropsychology Associates in Voorhees. She wanted to do a preliminary chat with me to find out why I needed testing. We'll be doing it at or around 4:30 tomorrow, depending on how a meeting of hers goes. 

Had dinner during Match Game PM. Bart Braverman happily flirted with a sweet and pretty contestant through much of the episode, even if he did say her sweatsuit looked more like pajamas. Don Galloway was more nervous about matching "Report __" in the Head-to-Head. 

Had dinner while Sale of the Century was on. I couldn't resist an episode from early in the run of the woman card-sharp champ who went on to win a bundle. She was behind for most of the game, but did manage to pick up a gorgeous pine wardrobe Instant Bargain and came back in the Speed Round. Didn't have much luck with the bonus round, though...

Finished the night online, first at YouTube with The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. Captain Gregg disapproves when Carolyn says she's going to star in Claymore's big drama "Way Off Broadway." She convinces him that theater nowadays is a lot more respectable...then regrets it when it turns out Claymore's play is a stinker and no one in the cast can act. Gregg figures out a way to make the show work.

Gregg's even more annoyed when he's not the one the town is honoring in "Hero Today, Gone Tomorrow." Turns out the great-grand niece of Captain Figg intends to honor her late grandfather's memory with a statue instead. Carolyn doesn't believe Gregg when he insists that Figg was a liar and a coward...until he digs up some literal concrete evidence at the Figg's old homestead. 

With the windy evening, I thought ending with "Sixth Sense" on Hart to Hart was appropriate. Sarah Morgan is a pretty young woman with psychic powers. She can feel herself being murdered...but it's actually the twin sister she never knew. Johnathan and Jennifer throw themselves whole-heartedly into their own brand of play-acting here, with Johnathan getting his Bogart on taking the place of a hard-boiled private detective and Jennifer wildly over-the-top as a medium conducting a seance. 

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Chilled Spring

Got a late start this morning. Barely shoveled down breakfast and headed out the door before I was slammed by heavy gusts of wind. They didn't help with my already-running way behind. I was fifteen minutes late arriving at work. 

Although it wasn't bad when I got in, it picked up less than an hour after my arrival and stayed busy for the rest of the day. Once again, we had no help, with lines of Sunday shoppers down the aisles. Most people were really good about it. There was at least one couple who forgot their WIC books and walked off...and couldn't have been happy when they took so long to get back, the managers put their cart away. Another WIC Check order had the wrong bread, although that went better once we got that and a mix-up with the Canada Dry sale figured out. Thank goodness my relief was on time, and I was able to dash off with no trouble.

Oh, and I finally remembered to get my schedule this week. Not happy about three 8 1/2 hour bagging days, including two in a row. I did get two days off, though, plus I have more hours than I did this week. 

Grabbed more snacks, including blackberries on sale for 99 cents, then headed home. Took the long way home down Nicholson Road despite the blustery gales and frigid clouds. Surprisingly for Sunday, it wasn't that busy. Everyone must have already gone to their March Madness, Oscar, and birthday parties by 5 PM. The trees here are starting to bloom; the magnolias are a glorious pink and magentas, and I've seen the first hyacinths in local yards, too. It made for a lovely ride down Atlantic and past WaWa and the Ritz Theater. 

Relaxed a bit when I got home and wrote down what I need to do this week. Listened to Classic Disney III while I worked. This is part of a series of five collections of Disney music that debuted in the late 90's. I had IV on cassette since I lived in Wildwood; picked up the others as part of a box set over a decade ago. What I like about the Classic Disney CDs is their rare and unusual material. You expect to hear "Colors of the Wind," "Jack's Lament," and "You've Got a Friend In Me"...but we also get rarer material from TV ("I'm Professor Ludwig Von Drake" and "The Ballad of Davy Crockett"), live-action musicals ("Are We Dancing?" from The Happiest Millionaire), and lesser-known Disney features (two numbers from James and the Giant Peach, "Family" and "My Name Is James"). 

Worked on writing for a while after I got off. The Red King pursues the group to the edge of the forest. Patti and Don are more scared of the giant raven and jub-jub birds, with their razor-sharp feathers, he's riding. Richard tries to take him on there, but the others finally drag him along with them.

Finally broke to have a fried egg wrap and broccoli at 7:30. Spent the rest of the night with episodes honoring several former Match Game panelists who passed away in the last few weeks. Scoey Mitchill was a comedian and character actor whose dead-pan, race-fueled wit brought a lot to game show panels in the 70's. Scoey admitted in Match Game 101 that he actually preferred playing Tattletales with his long-time wife Claire...and I don't blame him. They're one of my favorite couples on the show. They usually played well...although in these two episodes, they can't match another couple who was great at this, John Astin and Patty Duke.

Scoey wasn't the best at matching on Match Game - in fact, he seldom matched - but his deadpan delivery and tough-guy attitude that nicely contrasted with suave Richard Dawson and fussy Charles Nelson Reilly more than made up for it. He could get away with doing gags that none of the others would even contemplate, like getting up to take a nap after he'd already matched a question or kissing a guy after giving him a good answer on the Audience Match. 

Jolly and round Johnny Brown of Good Times seemed to really have a good time on his one and only Match Game week. He was such a doll and so good-natured, I really wish he'd turned up again. (Especially given how often his Good Times castmate Jimmie Walker appeared!) His week was funny in general. We saw one yesterday with Richard's Hogan's Heroes impression. The episode before that gave us Charles' hilarious reaction to "Charles __" on the Audience Match.

He proved to be equally good at stunts on the 1979 Beat the Clock. Patti Deustch also showed she was far better at stunts than matching as she and Johnny became the big winners for Christmas week on the show. Monty Hall celebrated by cheering them on. 

Conrad Janis is best known today for playing Mindy's conservative father in Mork & Mindy. He was one of several supporting actors from that show to appear on the syndicated Match Game in 1982. Charles Nelson Reilly was directing a play during his week. Paul Williams adequately substituted.

Honor these three comedy and sitcom favorites with some of their best game show appearances! (Look for intros from Betty White and the original Game Show Network commercials on Beat the Clock!) 

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Dolls On a Windy Day

Got a quick start with breakfast before hurrying out. I got caught up reading Firebird, by Mercedes Lackey, and took longer to get downstairs than I planned. At least it was a nice day when I left, sunny if chilly and very windy. 

Work was busy almost the entire afternoon. People wanted to get out before it gets windier and cold later this weekend. Some folks weren't in the best of moods, and someone spilled blueberries and didn't tell me. The lady who came in after them told me, and a bagger and I had to clean up the mess. At least my relief was on time. I was able to pick up a Clearly Canadian and a big container of trail mix for a snack at home.

Took the long way home down Nicholson Road, crossing at WaWa and Ritz Theater this time. By this point, the wind was even stronger, it was much colder, and clouds were in and out. Surprisingly, while Nicholson was fairly busy, especially around the mall entrance, the White Horse Pike was quiet. Had no trouble crossing whatsoever. 

Once I finally got in, I went straight upstairs, changed, and put my purchases away. I wanted to dress the dolls, but while I knew where they and their clothes and shoes were, I couldn't for the life of me find the box with their accessories, socks, stockings, and underwear. Something else that shouldn't have gone into storage. I really, really should have been more organized about moving and taken better charge of the whole thing.

At least I did get the dolls into their Easter and spring outfits. Molly's in her aqua Polka Dot Outfit with tights (since I can't find her socks). Sam gets her very pretty and grown-up limited edition Flower-Picking Dress and two-tone boots. Jessa wears her purple fruit-print Birthday Outfit and jelly sandals. Josefina is in her Feast Day Outfit with the ruffled camisa. (I'm afraid I can't find the gold embroidered shawl that goes with it.) Felicity also gets her Birthday Gown and floral "pinner" (pinafore). Ariel is in the Flower Girl Outfit from 2008 with Springfield Collection espadrilles and a white lace shrug from an Our Generation dress. Whitney's in a pastel polka-dotted dress I found on eBay that was listed as being for Molly, but its wide skirt makes it more appropriate for the 50's. 

Dressed the Cabbies for spring, too. They both get real little girl outfits repurposed for them. Dulcie's wearing a white dress with purple smocking and a ruffled collar. Carrie has a long-sleeved dotted red and white dress with a sewn on pinafore that has a strawberry print. I was even able to find a place for their little table and chairs. 

Watched the 2018 Disney Channel Freaky Friday as I worked. I go further into the most recent remake of the 1972 children's book at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Switched to Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood as I finished with the dolls. "Daniel Gets a Shot" from Doctor Anna, but he's really nervous about it. His mother encourages him to distract himself by thinking of something happy. "A Stormy Day" makes puddles for Dan and O the Owl to splash in, but it also brings noisy and scary thunder. Mrs. Tiger once again encourages them to think of something happy to distract then from the noise.

Ran two Match Game '75 episodes as I gathered the dolls' things I could find and put them away, then set the dolls back up on their bench. Honored the late Johnny Brown from Good Times with the first one that had Richard doing his "Newkirk" Cockney accent from Hogan's Heroes to read a question about what Hogan and his boys would be shown on TV to torture them. There's also Charles' "Kissing Bandit" gags (including giving Trish Stewart a kiss), Marcia Wallace getting all her answers right for once, and not one, but two close and genuinely exciting games. 

Comedy writer Ann Elder and dancer Bobby Van joined in for an episode from a few weeks later. Bobby wondered how well he knew his feet when he was the only one who missed a question about what he did to his toes when they wouldn't behave during a performance. Brett gets to show off her lovely twenty-something daughter Leslie in the audience, the spitting image of her mother other than her reddish hair, and get into an argument with the woman behind the buzzer.

Returned to Disney Plus for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse as I got organized and had dinner. Super Goof puts in his second appearance in "Super Goof's Super Puzzle." Puzzler Pete wants Goof, Pluto, and the mice to figure out his puzzles. If they do, they'll get a super special surprise. Goofy tries to use his super powers to save the day, but he ends up needing a little help from his friends and the Mystery Mouseke-tools.

Finished online after dinner and a shower with a second-season episode of Knight Rider, which can now be found for free on The Roku Channel, while I worked on my review. "Diamonds Aren't a Girl's Best Friend" when a model is found dead after a party. The police thinks it's a suicide, but her best friend Lauren considers it to be otherwise and hires the Foundation. Michael Knight poses as her former boyfriend to divert suspicion. 

There's a lot more going on behind the scenes at these shoots than it looks, and it all goes back to Lauren's crooked boss Bernie Mitchell (Cameron Mitchell) and the diamond jewelry the models wear for their shoots. It's not as fake as it looks. The models are used to smuggle them into the country. Michael brings in Devon to pose as a buyer to get the proof of the Mitchells' scheme. 

Friday, March 25, 2022

Spring Into Good Health

Started off the morning with reading and writing upstairs. Just started Mercedes Lackey's Firebird, which is fairly long. I love explorations of fairy tales, and it's rare that I find one based on Russian stories. The tale of a young prince who is banished after he manages to see the Firebird who steals his father's cherries. He gains magic, but his squabbling brothers aren't too happy and try to get rid of him. I've read the original version of this story many times, and I'm looking forward to this retelling as well. 

Had a quick breakfast, then dashed out around 10:55. Got to Collingswood right on time for my doctor's appointment. After they weighed me, a nurse took my heart rate, and the doctor did it again when she came in. She asked me a lot of questions about my health and my family, then checked my eyes, ears, nose, and throat. I turned on my back and front so she could listen to my heart. 

Basically, she said I need a multitude of testing done. I know I need to see the gynecologist again, and another eye exam wouldn't hurt, especially since I can now afford glasses. Evidently, my thyroid is swollen, and she wants me to call the local radiology office. Having lab work done for a multitude of deficiencies is crucial, too. She suggested the Walgreens in Westmont to check it all out. 

Cut through Collingswood after I left, making my way down to Newton Lake Park. It was too nice of a day for rushing. At that point, it remained sunny and fairly warm. It was probably in the lower-mid 60's, which may be why even Cuthbert wasn't that busy. I got across the street with no trouble, for once.

Next stop was the Haddon Township Library. Looked up several books on managing money and job-hunting, but I ultimately just grabbed the next two books in the Tea Shop Mysteries series. My worn out card wouldn't work with the self-checkout, but there was no line at the regular check-out, either. 

Rode across the street to Target after I left the library. Dr. Jessica was totally adamant that I need a bike helmet. She really sort of went on about it. I finally bought the most decent one I could get for a half-way decent price, along with one of their 50-cent composition books. Had a tomato-basil panini, vanilla bean scones, and rather tasty unsweetened black tea lemonade at the small Starbucks in the Target. By that point, it was nearly rush-hour, and there were busy. I was lucky one of the self-checkout terminals opened quickly. 

I was hoping to get my schedule today and make the calls, but as of this second, they still haven't posted them. I don't know what's taking so long. The schedules are supposed to debut Friday. I ended up writing instead. Yes, that is the Red King riding the enormous raven and bringing monstrous birds known as the jub-jub to attack them. Patti and Donald start to flee - the others follow in a hurry. Richard,  however is too busy fighting them to follow quickly...

Broke at 6:30 for Match Game '77. This was the second of two times tough gal Roz "Pinky Tuscadero" Kelly appeared on the show. Gene gives her a kiss anyway...and she's just as happy with it the second time around. The others get more creative with the Audience Match "Loaded __" with a broad-shouldered contestant whom, as Gene pointed out, could probably take on the entire audience and the panel in a pinch. 

Went downstairs to make dinner after the show. Quickly threw together salmon with leftover zucchini and tomatoes, along with my home-made chicken stock. It might have been a little bland, but I left half for others anyway. 

Finished the night on YouTube reliving some wonderful childhood memories. One of the forgotten aspects of spring from the early 80's through the early 90's was the debut of many syndicated animated specials. Most of them were advertising for either new toys that were just on the market, a new playset or doll for an already-existing line, or more rarely, a comic strip or popular children's book . 

Kid video lines like Family Home Entertainment (F.H.E) and Children's Video Library put out many of them for rental (and even a few made-for-video specials later), often packaging them with random vintage shorts and/or advertisements for other specials and they released. Sometimes, as in the second and last Rose Petal Place special "Real Friends," they'd even include characters based after toys that were planned, but never made it to market. 

We used to spend whole afternoons in the mid and late 80's watching those children's video collections. You never knew what would pop up after the main program. Sometimes, you might get vintage Looney Tunes or Terrytoons or Hanna Barbara or Gumby. There might be ads for other specials they released in the same genre - Strawberry Shortcake commercials included with the Care Bears, for instance, or Transformers ads on the end of a Thundercats video. Or you might get a short picture book retelling featuring the characters, with voices, sound effects, and slight camera tricks to simulate movement. 

Fairies from 1981 is a bit more unique. It began life as a hit picture book and didn't expand into merchandise until much later. And if the Care Bears episode included here looks a lot different from the later Care Bears Family, the first two specials and the first series were animated by a different company. Nelvana didn't start doing them until they put out The Care Bears Movie

If you also remember those specials or the toys that inspired them, you'll want to take a trip down a song-filled memory lane of happy childhood memories!

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Where's the Stormy Weather?

Began the morning with a quick shredded wheat and strawberry breakfast. I debated taking my bike to work, but while it wasn't raining at 8:30, it was also wet and cold. Not to mention, I heard rumbles about storms later in the day. Thankfully, the Uber driver arrived in less than five minutes and got me to work equally fast.

After all that, work was mostly really boring. I think the bad weather scared everyone away. I spent almost the entire afternoon standing around. It didn't start picking up until around 3:30...and when it did get busy, we had lines down the aisles. I was the only cashier there besides the one in the express lane. I also had to clean up two spills, one with help from the young woman in charge of online shopping orders. She also came in for me when my actual relief was late.

At least I had no trouble getting home this time. It was wet when I got out, but not raining. I got an Uber driver in under ten minutes, and he was actually on time. No traffic going home, despite it still being rush hour. 

Changed and had a snack while watching Match Game '77. The poor kid who's innocent answer set off the "School Riot" was brought back, and this time, he actually won the game. A still-annoyed Richard is more than happy to help him out with "Enough __" in the Audience Match, while Patty Duke talks about her five children with Gene. He lost in the next episode to a very amusing southern lady whose enthusiastic response after a series of bad answers brought a lot of jokes from the panel.

Came up for Match Game PM and dinner. Lots of jokes about Gene taking a short nap when he's literally caught lying down in his entrance during the opening. Marcia Wallace wondered if she was taking her own short naps when some of her answers came out more than a little strange. Phyllis Davis of Vega$ belied the dumb blonde stereotype by coming up with some of the best answers of the show.

Switched to HBO Max after a shower for Sweet Dreams. I go further into this soap opera biography of Patsy Cline at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Finished the night with McMillan and Wife at YouTube. This series of TV movies was part of a rotating wheel of mystery movie series NBC ran from 1970 to 1977. This is one of three hits to come from the original series, the others being McCloud and Columbo. Rock Hudson is McMillan, the police commissioner in San Francisco, Susan St. James is his wife Sally, and Nancy Walker is their supremely sarcastic maid Mildred. They're shocked to discover a skeleton in their wall after it's uncovered during an earthquake. The "Aftershock" turns out to be worse than the initial quake when several shady characters beg to buy their home and a Lloyds of London insurer (Richard Dawson) shows up, claiming that there's a fortune in emeralds hidden in their wall. Turns out the emeralds lead to a trail of smuggling and deception...and a mysterious mercenary whom everyone talks about, but no one seems to recognize. 

(And I enjoyed that so much, I may have to look up some of NBC's other mystery movie series. Even some of the short-lived ones, like The Snoop Sisters and Banacek, look like fun.)

(Oh, and once again, it did rain...around 10 PM, by which time I was chatting with other game show fans on the Super Password premiere. And while the shower was pretty heavy, I never heard any thunder.)

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Waiting for the Rain

Kicked off the morning with a very quick breakfast of cereal and applesauce. While it was cloudy and cold again, it was also dry, without even a breeze. I was able to ride to work normally. 

My only bagging shift this week started out fairly well. I had no problems keeping up with the sweeping and carts until noon, when the rush hour came in. There were problems at the registers all day. Someone called out, and once again, they simply did not have enough help to handle everyone. Several people are on vacation, too, including two cashiers. We were less busy than lacking front end personnel. I ended up in a register for my last two hours, even though I still had sweeping to do and carts to gather, and the outside trash was overflowing. Someone did take over sweeping, but they never got the carts or the trash.

Rushed straight home the moment I could get out. Put on Match Game '77 while changing. Needless to say after the infamous "School Riot," judge and producer Ira Skutch really had to keep on his toes. Gene continued to be nervous...and Richard continued to be annoyed with Gene and Ira. Dick Martin is happier to talk about Sammy Davis Jr in the opening, while the others dig up some really interesting answers to "The Virgin __" in the Audience Match

Put on Match Game PM after dinner as I rearranged the shelves. Allen Ludden and Betty White made their last appearance on Match Game - and TV - together in 1980. Alas, the syndicated week is currently lost, but the PM episode exists. Gene and Brett discuss the gestation of the saying "up a river without a paddle" when Brett complains about her answer to a question of what Weird Willie brings when he goes to prison being rejected, while the others try to figure out "Can't Stop the ___" on the Audience Match. 

Finished the night online with Mystery Science Theater 3000. "Quest of the Delta Knights" is one of the few movies of the 90's that appeared on the show. It's your basic "medieval Star Wars with a touch of Willow," and frankly about a decade out of date. A young boy is sent on a quest to discover the treasures of Archimedes by a wizard (David Warner) who wants to protect them from an evil nobleman (Warner). After the wizard is killed by knights, the kid turns to no less than a young Leonardo DiVinci (David Kriegel) to help him find the treasure.

Fairly typical and mixed-up sword-and-sorcery movie is obviously cheap and filled with anachronisms (DiVinci was a figure of Renaissance Italy used in medieval England), but has some enjoyable action sequences. Nasty Pearl, who was in charge of the Gizmondo Institute, liked it enough to join Crow and Servo for the first 20 minutes or so of the film.

Moved to YouTube for The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. Mrs. Muir wants her stingy landlord Claymore to do repair work around her seaside cottage. Captain Gregg buries maps around the property where she wants Claymore to work, sending him and her young son Johnathan on a "Treasure Hunt."  

(And while it showered lightly earlier in the day, the real rain didn't come until I was long settled down in front of my computer.) 

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

A Walk On the Sunny Side

Had a very quick pumpkin pie breakfast this morning before dashing to work. Pushed carts for an hour and swept the store, then spent the remaining three hours taking customers. We were pretty busy for a Tuesday, thanks to it being our Senior Discount Day and the senior apartment building just two blocks away. We still don't have a lot of help, either. I'm surprised they were able to find someone who could come in for me so I could go home.

Took the long way home down Nicholson Road. It was certainly a gorgeous day for it. Clouds hung on as I went to work, but they were gone by noon. Dodged road work as I headed over to Newton, then went back to East Clinton. I did have to dodge a lot of traffic on Nicholson and Atlantic as everyone came home or went out to lunch.

Turns out I had counseling today, not last week. Talked to Mrs. Stahl after lunch. I'm incredibly lucky I only worked in the morning and didn't have to cancel, because I had a lot to discuss with her. On one hand, I did find somewhere to live, made friends with my neighbors, and finally made the doctor's and neuropsychologist appointments. 

Trouble is...Rose is still angry at me. I want her in my life, but she doesn't want me here anymore. She wants me to live with Mom so she won't have to be my caretaker, and refuses to accept that it can't happen. And there was the unorganized move that ended with things I wanted here that are in storage, and things that should be in storage here. 

And yeah, I still want out of South Jersey. Mrs. Stahl is really big on my moving to New England to live near Lauren, maybe in central Massachusetts. Well...maybe. They're still really expensive, and I don't know what the public transportation is like. I was thinking closer, maybe the Pennsylvania suburbs of Philadelphia. We'll just have to see what happens. I can't move until I get a decent job...and I can't get a decent job until I figure out what's wrong with me.

Cindy and her friend were painting and putting up the board when I finished. I worked on writing for a half-hour, then decided it was too nice to be inside. Headed out into the perfect 64-degree sunshine for a walk and to run a few errands. Bought a more professional strawberry banana smoothie at WaWa. Strolled to the other side of Oaklyn and bought conditioner and low-sat almonds at CVS. By that point, the traffic had dwindled to nothing, and there were lots of families and joggers out for a stroll or a run. It really was wonderful to be out and about and enjoying the day.

Worked on writing when I got in. Patti (Deustch) Dee and Donald (Ross) Dum are going to have a battle...if they can move in their heavy home-made armor. It turns out to be a moot point when the "storm" that's been brewing overhead is actually an enormous that's being ridden by the Red King (Mark Goodson).

Broke for leftovers and to get organized around 6:30. Got done just in time to watch the infamous "School Riot" on Match Game '77. Yes, this was episode where Richard Dawson and Debralee Scott angrily protested their "Finishing School" answers not matching the contestant's "School" and Brett Somers and Ed Asner's "College." For Richard, who already protested several answers over the past few weeks and would protest several more in the coming months, this was likely the last straw. From late 77 through his departure in June 1978, his lack of control over the outcome of the game would make him far less interested in Match Game

Match Game PM was a lot less dire. Fred Grandy took over for Charles while he directed opera and enjoyed flirting with a bubbly blonde contestant. He had more trouble helping her with "__ of Cards" in the Head to Head. 

Finished the night with Coal Miner's Daughter at Amazon Prime after a shower. I go further into this biopic featuring Sissy Spacek as country music pioneer Loretta Lynn at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Monday, March 21, 2022

Darkness In the Sunshine

Started off the morning with breakfast and Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. Teacher Harriet reminds O that "You are Special" when they hold a talent show, and he worries that he's can't do the things they do. O, however, does have one talent they definitely don't - he can fly. Dan Sr. tells his son that "Daniel Is Special" while they're on a walk outside together.

Finally called the Voorhees neuropsychologists after I ate. To my surprise, they had a cancelation and was able to get me in on April 4th. The testing will literally take all day, from 8:30 to 3:30, and even with my health insurance, it'll still cost a few hundred dollars. At this point, I don't care. I just want to figure out what's wrong with me.

I also heard from Rose...who is not happy I contacted Craig about the dolls. I contacted him because he's actually speaking to me. She'll put the bin outside after 1 PM, but she's still not talking to me or Mom. She doesn't want to see us again, at birthdays or holidays or anytime, or make any contact with us. I don't get it. Why do I have to live with Mom? It's not Mom's fault that her home doesn't allow roommates. Why is she afraid she'll have to take care of me? I'm an adult. I can take care of myself. And if she's having a hard time, wouldn't it help to talk to someone about it, instead of ignoring people who could listen? And what about her children? It'll just hurt them to cut them off from family. 

Finally walked over to Kendall Boulevard around quarter of 1. Stopped over at Hillcrest to see if any neighbors were around. Talked to Ron, my former next-door neighbor. He basically said to give Rose time. This was a rough time for everyone, and she needs time to recover. I'm not so sure. I'm worried about her depression. I know she doesn't want me to, but...I'm her older sister, and I love her, no matter what. Even if she doesn't love me anymore. 

It took me another ten minutes to drum up the courage to walk to her front door. Yes, the bin was there, and that little live tree I bought for Christmas and forgot at her house, too. I picked them up and hauled them a block down Kendall to the Oaklyn School. Figured it would be better if I didn't call Uber from her house. It took me nearly a half-hour to get a driver. The first one canceled, and the second one took longer to come. At least he was really nice and helpful when he did come. He even carried the bin to Cindy's porch.

Moved the shelves into the middle of the room and attempted to get the bottoms back on the folding shelf while watching Match Game '74 episodes. No less than head producer Mark Goodson himself gave Gene Rayburn a bag for the needlepoint he did on long cross-country flights in honor of the show being a huge hit. In the second episode, Fannie Flagg appeared in a Girl Scout uniform and claimed to be leaving to lead her troop after the show, and we got a very funny (and maybe slightly mean) question about who gave the dumbest answers on the show. The panel spent the third episode searching for Brett's lost earring and teasing Allen Ludden for giving "President Arthur" as an answer to "__ Arthur" in the Audience Match.

Switched to a classic episode of I Love Lucy on Hulu, "Lucy Does a TV Commercial," while I had lunch. Lucy begs Ricky to let her be the spokeswoman on the commercial for his new TV show. He says no...but as usual, Lucy jumps into it anyway. She shows up at the studio and ends up advertising a health tonic that's so full of alcohol, she's drunk by the time Ricky's singing for a national audience.

Went online for an hour to look up a few things, then tried to head out to Emily's. I wanted to get the flattened cardboard boxes out of the way, but there were so many, and they were so big, it took me three tries to get them all into the recycling bin and out to the curb. Rushed out the second I finished. At least it was a nice day for a quick walk. The wind died down to a gentle breeze by 5:30, and it was sunny and in the mid-60's. 

Thanks to help from Ron's son Ryan and another little boy who was throwing baseballs with him, I found Emily's house around quarter of 6. She was in her lovely little kitchen, putting the finishing touch on roasted chicken and vegetables and salad. We talked about all my problems with Rose and about my making that appointment this morning. She's glad I made the appointment and echoes Mom's sentiment that it'll allow me to get more help and support than my family can provide. 

Truth be told, I still don't know what to do next. I don't want to stay in South Jersey, especially since most of my family plans on leaving the area, but then...where? Where should I go? There's no one I can move in with, and I really want a place of my own anyway. I want to take classes and learn to be an archivist or librarian, but that'll take a while. I need a better job, and not in retail. I've had enough of retail. Trouble is, every job I look at either requires more skills or experience than I have. 

At least dinner was delicious, with nice, tender chicken and flavorful vegetables. We chatted all through the meal. She and her son just moved here in August 2020, a few weeks after Dad's death. She's a teacher at an elementary school in Lindenwald who likes how tight-knit Oaklyn is and is glad to have a quiet place to raise her son. 

Mathieson joined us later. In fact, he was the little boy I saw earlier with Ryan. They're on the same little league team and were practicing their pitches together. He didn't really want to eat anything but the vegetables and the sweet and creamy pumpkin pie we had for dessert, but Emily convinced him to at least get some protein in.

They even walked me home. Well, walked and rode, as Mathieson rode his scooter. We listened to him talk about his classes and friends, while we discussed the local libraries and how they ran all of the Marvel movies when the pandemic hit two years ago. (I need to catch up on my superhero flicks. There's two Marvel and I think two or three DC movies I haven't gotten to yet.)

Finally moved the shelves into the back room or bed room, then went online to finish the night with Return to Oz on Disney Plus. Dorothy Gale (Faruza Balk) has had nightmares, ever since she went to Oz. Her aunt takes her to a mental hospital for treatment, but Dorothy doesn't like the sound of this electroshock therapy at all. She eventually flees with another little girl and dreams herself back into Oz. This Oz is very different from the one she knew, though. The Nome King (Nicol Williamson) stole all the emeralds from the Emerald City and turned everyone to stone. Dorothy and her pet chicken Billina travel from the city to the Nome King's domain to find the emeralds and free the citizens of the land from his tyranny.

Given how dark this is, you'd think I would avoid it. It's actually one of my favorite movies. I can handle a touch of macabre if it's not too gruesome. Too many people unfavorably compare this to the 1939 version, but I see Return as its own thing. If you want to see an Oz that's a bit closer to the books, or love other dark fantasy films of the 80's, you'll want to take the journey over that ruined Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy and her friends, too. 

Sunday, March 20, 2022

The Music of Spring

Began my morning with breakfast, then finally doing a few things I'd been putting off. Contacted Craig on Instant Messenger to ask him when would be a good time for me to pick up the dolls. I appreciate Rose wanting to help, but not only are we enabling my overreliance on her and her doing everything for everyone, but I'm kind of tired of waiting for her to have the time. I could walk over there and take an Uber home with the bin. 

Spent the next hour or so flattening cardboard boxes to go out in the recycling tomorrow. One of the tools that came in the tool case Rose gave me for Christmas was a sharp knife with a retractable blade. It easily sliced through the tape on the empty boxes...and the empty boxes when the sides were too close to slice through. Listened to my Tina Turner: Simply the Best CD while I worked, enjoying hits like "River Deep, Mountain High," "Tiny Dancer," and "We Don't Need Another Hero." 

Had a very quick lunch, then headed off to work. It was almost exactly the same as yesterday - busy during rush hours, otherwise off-and-on steady. Cold, heavy wind and gloomy clouds didn't really improve anyone's mood. Neither did a lot of cashiers leaving at the same time. We had to call for help during my last hour. 

Watched Whew! while I rounded up things that needed to be dropped into crates and put in the closet. John Ritter made a surprise guest appearance at the end of the episode when his Three's Company buddy Richard Kline's contestant had a big win on the board. He gave them hugs, threw a scarf and bear hat on Kline, and took off. No idea what was going on there, but it was pretty funny. 

Finished the night on YouTube after a shower. Musical game shows go back to radio, where they were among the most popular programming of the 1940's. Beat the Band and Stop the Music were major hits at a time when radio was beginning to lose its luster. Stop the Music was such a hit, it dented the ratings of long-time champ The Fred Allen Show, prompting Fred's dislike of game shows. 

Stop the Music also crossed over to television. I found an episode from its second 1954 to 1956 run. Jaye P. Morgan, later of The Gong Show, is the singer. Host Bert Parks proved to have an attractive voice alongside her. Loved their adorable comic duet "To Prove My Love for You." Sailors and couples alike had a great time trying win $10,000 by guessing the title of the song. 

Some early musical game shows got so into the musical side of things, they dispensed with the games. Musical Chairs from 1955 was a summer-replacement panel show that had celebrities answering questions about music, no trivia or game-play involved. Mel Blanc shows off his Speedy Gonzales voice, and Bobby Troupe was just as charming and soft-spoken as he would be twenty years later with his wife Julie London on Tattletales

The stakes were considerably higher two decades later on Name That Tune. Tom Kennedy lead two contestants through guessing the names and melodies of popular songs, then having one contestant say the other could "name that tune" in a certain amount of notes. I used to love watching the Jim Lange syndicated version from 1984 on USA Network as a kid. It was fun to play along and see if I could guess the songs before the contestants did!

Face the Music is another oddity that used to play on USA in its formative years. Three contestants hear music that relates to a person, place, or thing shown on a screen. They have to guess which the songs fit. The winner goes on to face the champ in a one-on-one battle to see who can guess which song relates to which subject first. The show is better-known today for its off-the-wall contestants than its game play. Here, the one guy outstrips two ladies, one of whom sings baritone with a male quartet, the other who is a former belly dancer. The latter in particular seemed pretty clueless, but neither did especially well. The baritone only made it because the the other lady barely got any points. Former Tarzan Ron Ely just seemed amused by the weirdness.

MTV got their karaoke on several times, notably with Lip Service in 1992. Jason Mohr was the original host for this battle between three lip-syncing groups. The best group would return for a chance at serious cash and to sing in their own music video. Nipsey Russell is among the celebrity judges deciding who has the chops to appear on TV.

Sing along with these musical blasts from the past! (Look for the original commercials on both Name That Tune episodes.)

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Laughing Matches

Got a later start this morning, but I did give myself enough time to call Clinical Neuropsychology Associates again. Once again got their phone and left a message. Grabbed a quick breakfast and dashed out shortly afterwards.

Work was pretty much the same as yesterday - only busy during rush hours. It was supposed to rain all day here, but the rain didn't come. While it did cloud over a few times, it mostly remained sunny and warm for the entire afternoon. Not only is it too nice for a lot of shopping, but as I said yesterday, the only thing going on right now is March Madness. Managed to get in and out with few problems other than some grumpy customers.

Went straight home after that, changed, and had the plate of leftovers I set up for myself yesterday while watching Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. "Daniel Explores Nature" when he spends the day outside with his family. He watches a cardinal and his mate build a nest, then tries to help with Katerina when the next falls out of the tree. O and X the Owl take him on "Daniel's Nature Walk" in the rain. They see shiny worms squirming on the dirt and catch sight a beautiful rainbow after the rain passes.

Started working on my review of The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking after I got online. I go further into this family musical from 1988 at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Finished the night online with Buzzr's Let's Laugh Marathon. This year, they kept the marathon to the night hours, instead of going all day. We started off with TV's Funniest Game Show Moments 2, which apparently hasn't been seen since its original broadcast in 1985. William Shatner hosted this one. 

Garry Moore and Steve Allen turned up to discuss some of the crazier Mystery Guests to appear on early panel shows What's My Line? and I've Got a Secret, like Ronald Regan and Johnny Carson. Bob Barker talks about how wild the contestants could get when they "come on down!" on The Price Is Right, and about all the trouble his models (mainly poor Holly Halstrom) often have demonstrating the prizes. Bert Convy explains just how salacious some of the answers on Tattletales could get, including two absolutely hilarious responses from Gene Rayburn's wife Helen. Bill Cullen talks about the wacky responses he got from kids on the short-lived Child's Play, and some of the word descriptions kids gave in the longer-running English version, too. Shatner also shows us some of the crazier responses to surveys in Family Feud

Despite Match Game not being mentioned in the special, it was still the show Buzzr kicked off with. This is only the second episode I've seen them show from 1973. Gene sports a hideous red and green plaid suit that's so awful, even the panelists make fun of it. (Jack Carter says it looks like "a station break in Poland.") There was an episode from '75 too.

Password Plus was the infamous "French episode." Dick Martin answered an episode "French," only to end up getting a lesson from host Tom Kennedy and the judges on the differences between "France" and "French." Bert Convy actually managed to break his question machine on a Super Password from 1986. Good thing Pat Harrington, who played a handyman on One Day at a Time, was there to "fix" it!

Oh, and it did finally rain...around 8 PM, long after I'd already gotten home and was upstairs. It's rained off, sometimes heavily, since tnen. 

Friday, March 18, 2022

The Warmth of the Sun

Started off the morning with breakfast and...wishing I could see more of it. It was so foggy when I finished eating, I could barely see a foot in front of my face. Figured I'd be better off riding my bike to work. Yes, cars have high beams, but bikes can ride on the sidewalk and the side of the road. With all that and traffic on the White Horse Pike, I barely got to work on time.

That may have been the worst thing that happened all day. We were steady at rush hours, but otherwise pretty quiet. Once the mists lifted, it revealed a sunny day that was too pleasant for shopping. I spent a lot of the time this afternoon standing around. 

That's probably why my hours were cut next week. In good news, two days off, Monday and next Friday, and two days (Tuesday and next Saturday) with only four hours. However, there's also three eight hour and eight in a half hour days. Considering everything else I want to get done, a week or two of fewer hours might not be a bad thing...

It was so nice, I took the long way home down the Nicholson Road after buying snacks for the week. That might not have been the smartest idea. It was quarter after 3 by then, and rush hour just started. I dodged a lot of traffic, including on Nicholson and the White Horse Pike.

Changed and watched Tattletales while enjoying my snacks. This time, Orson Bean and his laid-back wife Carolyn and Milton Berle and his equally funny with Ruth were the big winners, over Amanda Blake and her animal-tamer husband Frank. Press Your Luck let that male champ retire after winning 30,000 in trips and other prizes. 

Talked to Mom during Press Your Luck. We're both worried about Rose. She's been avoiding everyone in the family. Even Keefe can't get through to her. She's not having an easy time lately, either. Her beloved dog Kelsey died a painful death from kidney disease, and she's having trouble with her family, too. 

I really need to stop relying on her so much, and not just because of everything going on. Rose says she'll do things (like give the family free legal counsel), but she has a hard time setting boundaries, and it ends up causing more trouble than it solves. I'll contact Craig tomorrow and see if I can set up a time to take Uber over and pick up the dolls. I don't think either of them should deliver them here. From now on, I hire my own lawyer when I need legal counsel, Uber when I need a ride or to pick up Lauren, and a moving van when I need to haul things. Yes, it'll cost money, but it'll also prove to Rose that I can be independent and make my own decisions.

It was too beautiful to sit inside all afternoon. I headed out after Press Your Luck to run errands. I realized when I got home I forgot to buy a few things at work, including a gift card for Mom's birthday this weekend. Got the money and the card at WaWa. Couldn't find the conditioner I needed at Family Dollar, but I did buy a better planner than the dull pink one I picked up in November and a sympathy card for Rose and her family. (I'll give it to Craig instead of putting it in the mail. If I do that, Rose will just ignore it or throw it away.)

Got home and went straight into writing. Brett helps Patti "dress" in home-made armor for her battle with Donald, while Richard and Jimmie help Don. Marcia points out that it's getting darker and windier...and the weather may have more of an impact on that "battle" than either of the combatants expected...

Broke at 7 for Match Game PM. Debralee Scott got to show off a shapely leg for a question. Modest Bill Daily, who sat next to her, covered it with his jacket! Later on, Brett has a harder time with the Head-to-Head "Dozen __."

Watched Sale of the Century next. It was all about the ladies on this episode from the summer of 1988. They kept going back-and-forth, but the female challenger pulled ahead in the second half after not buying anything. She finally picked up a water ski for her trouble.

Finished out the night on Amazon Prime with The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking after dinner. I'll go further into this one tomorrow; I watched it tonight so I can catch Buzzr's Let's Laugh Marathon tomorrow night. 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

No Luck of the Irish

Top o' the evenin' to ye! Started off my St. Patrick's Day with breakfast and a nice, steady shower. It was still coming down too hard at that point to ride my bike to work. Called for Uber; to my surprise, given the weather, they were there in under ten minutes. I got to work in more than enough time.

Work was on-and-off busy with people buying big cabbage and corned beef dinners...and other things, from some of the surprisingly big orders we had. Considering how grouchy and weird some people were (including my last customers of the day), I suspect quite a few folks went straight from Rexy's Bar across the street to shopping. After the last trio of men seemed to have a hard time figuring out their orders, I just barely got off in time.

Despite it being quarter of 3 and the rain having long since vanished, I had a hard time finding a ride home. It took me almost 10 minutes to get one...and over 20 minutes for them to arrive. At least the traffic wasn't that bad when he did finally appear. 

Went straight upstairs and changed while Tattletales ran. Amanda Blake and her animal-tamer husband Frank just barely won today over Milton Berle and his equally witty wife Ruth and Orson Bean and his wife Carolyn. Whammies abounded on Press Your Luck today, making the final winner come down to a well-thought-out pass by one of the guys. The lady he passed to lost piles of money to a Whammy, leaving him the winner with money and a set of luggage. 

Did some writing after the show ended. Patti (Deustch) Dee and Donald (Ross) Dum hide under an umbrella while the others figure it's time to move on. They're about to ask Patti and Donald about White King Gene when Patti complains to her husband that she just found her nice new rattle broken. She wants to go to battle with him over it. He agrees, but the others don't think it's such a terrific idea...

Didn't break until past 7 PM. The woman who originally invited me to dinner ended up canceling, thanks to a bad cold. I ate out of the fridge instead while watching Match Game PM. Towering Richard Kiel and diminutive Paul Williams provided quite a contrast in this episode. Gene took one look at Richard standing at his full 8 foot height and told him he could write anything he wanted! The contestants were equally odd, with one odd contestant who actually had the last name "Strange" and a lovely lady with beautiful and elaborate braids.

Finished the night online with Little Nellie Kelly, an Irish-themed vehicle for Judy Garland at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Switched to Disney Plus for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. The gang hopes "Minnie's Rainbow" will lead to a pot of gold. Pete the Leprechaun doesn't want to share his gold and does his best to trip them up at every turn. 

There's a ton of vintage Looney Tunes on HBO Max, including "The Wearing of the Grin." Mickey's not the only one who has an encounter with a mischievous leprechaun. Porky Pig has his own trouble with the wee folk when they think he's after that pot of gold and sentence him to wear green shoes that dance on their own. He spends a surreal Irish nightmare trying to outrun those shoes, before they force  him to dance jigs forever! 

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Man and Teens of Steel

Started off a sunny day with oversleeping and a very quick breakfast. At least it was a nice day for a fast ride to work. It was sunny, breezy, and in the upper 50's-lower 60's by quarter of 10. Dodged some late morning traffic on the White Horse Pike and got to work just in time.

Work was a pain in the rear for the entire eight hours. You'd think people would be in a better mood on a day with such gorgeous weather. There were a lot of people who were demanding or rude, and several who wouldn't or couldn't bag. We had long lines all afternoon, too. I was often the only line open besides express. No one called out. They just didn't have enough people to assign to work in the morning and afternoon on a Wednesday. I was so happy when I got off with just enough time to shut down without a relief.

Went straight home and upstairs for a snack and Match Game '77. Richard wishes his older son Gary happy birthday in the opening, but he doesn't do as well helping a contestant with "__ Convention" in the Head-to-Head. A woman wearing unique butterfly-shaped glasses does better with "Bet On __" later.

Opted for Match Game PM and pizza for dinner. Bart Braverman happily flirted with the female contestant, but even she realized she didn't give the best answers. Brett was more nervous to help the winner with "__ Saucer" on the Head-to-Head and figure out what the dullest movie ever made was adapted from.

Finished the night after a shower with the pilot episode of Superman & Lois on HBO Max. This recent show is kind of a cross between Smallville and a less-goofy Adventures of Lois & Clark. Clark Kent (Tyler Hoechilin) takes his wife Lois Lane Kent (Elizabeth Tulloch) and their twin sons Jonathan (Jordan Elsass) and Jordan (Alex Garfin) home to Smallville after his mother dies. While the boys befriend sweet Sarah Cushing (Inde Navarette), Clark, in his Superman guise, tries to figure out who the man in the lead suit who is gathering Kryptonite is, and discovers that one of his sons may have his powers after they survive an accident that should have killed them.

I've always preferred Superman and Supergirl and their universe over the darker world of Batman, and this is no exception. Considering how long it took Lois & Clark to get those two hitched, it's interesting this version starts off with them that way. I may have to check out more of this and see where it goes. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Preview of Spring

I actually got up around 10:30, but I spent so much time reading Coconut Layer Cake Murder and writing in my journal, it was nearly 12:30 before I had breakfast. Watched Match Game '74 while I ate. Buzzr is currently at the start of the wild week featuring Patti Deustch and her comedy writer husband Donald Ross. The two were utterly perfect for each other...because they both had the strangest minds I ever saw. Sweet contestant Janet Finn was happier that she kept winning as the others helped her figure out "Be My __" in the Audience Match.

Spent the next hour going through the clothes my neighbor gave me yesterday. The blue gingham button-down LL Bean shirt, the long pale blue print sweater, the snowflake-print turtleneck, and the heavy red polo shirt all fit. A few things didn't, including the shorts and the two Hawaiian t-shirts. Dropped those back in the bag to donate later. 

Jessa texted me as I went online. She's been wondering how I'm doing. I've wondered the same thing about her. We don't have many relatives left. We arranged to go out to lunch later in the afternoon at 3:30, after counseling.

Or what I thought was counseling. Boy, do I feel ridiculous. I waited and waited, and never heard from Mrs. Stahl. I must have gotten the days wrong. I might have to call her tomorrow or later this week and re-schedule. I can't take days off so quickly. 

Spent so much time waiting for her, it was quarter after 3 when I finally rushed out the door. Hurried down the street to drop the bag of clothes I didn't want in Dollar General's donation bin. Tried to take the short way cutting through the Baptist Church's parking lot, but there was a fence I couldn't climb. At least it was a nice day for running around, even warmer and sunnier than yesterday, in the mid-60's. 

Jessa waited for me in her car when I got back. We ended up having lunch at the Legacy Diner in Audubon. It's literally a straight line from Oaklyn. They were dead as can be in the mid-afternoon. Jessa had a tuna melt and I had coconut-pineapple pancakes while I asked her if she's heard from Rose. No, she hasn't. Didn't hear from Jodie before she left, either. She and her husband Joe are doing just fine, with Joe happy he's able to attend his favorite horror conventions again. 

I told her about signing up for HBO Max, and we had a long discussion about which streaming services we like best and why. Disney Plus is our favorite, followed by Hulu and its line-up of vintage sitcoms and new dramas and documentaries. I'm not as enamored with Netflix as a lot of people. I'm more interested in older shows and don't really care about their original dramas. My only interest with them is their cartoons. 

Briefly showed her my rooms after we finished lunch. It took her a while to find a place to park. Turns out the cops are very strict about no one parking on Johnson Avenue. She had to drive around and park on East Clinton.

Worked on Wonderland Blank after Jessa left. Patti Deustch Dee and Donald Ross Dum recite "The Walrus and the Carpenter" for the group, but Brett thinks the poem is more depressing than interesting. Richard wishes they'd just let them pass, so they can make their next jump to the White Castle. But Patti suddenly sees a broken rattle in the grass that sets her and Donald off on each other...

Match Game PM ran when I got back upstairs after talking. Brett was really interested in a laid-back gentleman who said he taught exercise classes on the beach at Waikiki. Rita Moreno and Gary Crosby were more interested in helping the other contestant figure out what doctor a lady married, while Charles had to figure out "Turn the Other __" on the Head to Head.

Finished out the night with pork chops, roasted sweet potatoes, and asparagus for dinner while watching The King and I. I go further into the original live-action film with Deborah Kerr and Yul Brunner as the title characters at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.

Monday, March 14, 2022

Spring Has Sprung

Awoke to a trilling phone. Mom finally got back to me after I called her last night. I'm still upset about Rose ignoring me and saying she's done with me. Why? If she's having problems, why can't she talk to me? She also keeps taking on the legal work for the entire clan, without considering the toll that takes on her and her relationships with us. I also later found out from Craig on Facebook that her 15-year-old miniature pincher Kelsey just died after a long battle with kidney disease, too. Kelsey was Rose's first dog she had as an adult, and she was as much her baby as her human babies. 

Still...we're sisters, barely a year apart. We've shared a lot over the years. I know we're as different as can be, but that doesn't mean I don't love her. Is she afraid she'll end up taking care of me? Why? I'm an adult. I can take care of myself. Why can't she trust me? Because she doesn't think I can change? Because she's angry I didn't move in with Mom? Why did she think that was a great idea in the first place?

I want to prove I can change. In addition to the doctor's appointments, there's other medical examinations I've put off. Next on the list after the physical along with the neuropsychologist is an updated eye exam and finally buying new glasses. I had my previous exam in February 2020, less than a month before the pandemic began. By the time I had money for glasses, the pandemic was in full swing, and I wasn't sure they were even open. Haven't been to the gynecologist since 2018, either. I had extensive dental work done last year, so my next check-up will be put off until the late spring-early summer, but it will get done. 

After I finally got off with Mom, I spent the next hour and a half finishing The Life (and Wife) of Allen Ludden, then had breakfast. Ate it fast, then took my tea upstairs to watch the end of Supermarket Sweep. Came in just as a trio of daughters were running the Big Sweep for their moms. 

Spent the next hour and a half doing research and checking around my blog. I did finally call the Clinical Neuropsychology Associates office in Voorhees. They need to check my insurance and see what I can pay before they give me an appointment; said it'll be a few days. 

Had a quick muffin-and-fruit lunch before heading out. It was way too nice to sit inside. I've spent too much time inside lately anyway. Spring has certainly sprung in Camden County. Daffodils blossom like frilly yellow suns in the front yard; new dark green grass pushes through old, brittle yellow patches. Buds push their way through the branches on the trees bobbing over the bottle-green lake. 

Headed down the dirt path, intending to come out at Bettlewood...but maybe that wasn't the best idea. The path was still muddy and slippery from the heavy rains and snow we had earlier in the week. I mostly walked on either side of the path until I got closer to the entrance and was on firmer footing. 

Made my way down Bettlewood after I left the park, then across the White Horse Pike. I was hoping to have a chat with some of my neighbors about Rose, Jodie, and the house. Ran into Maria and her darling granddaughter Piper as I came up to Manor. While Piper played in one of the new patches of grass and counted the planes flying overhead, she told me Jodie left for good earlier in the morning. The new owners won't be moving in until May, though. Jodie only refinished the floors and painted the house. It requires far more extensive remodeling than that. 

Another neighbor drove up as we talked. She had a pile of clothes she got off a friend whose sister died and thought I might want. Most of the pants were too small, and while I appreciate her fondness for L.L Bean's shirts, they tend to run small too. I did find a pair of shorts that might work and several shirts, including two Hawaiian shirts. 

We ended up at her mother's condo on the other side of Bettlewood on the way home. Her mother is a tiny, frail older lady in her 90's who moves around with a walker. She kept insisting my neighbor buy her ballpoint pens, even though she apparently bought her pens earlier. She left her mother looking for care options online when we left and she took me home. 

Watched Whew! as I made a to-do list of everything I need to get done in the next few weeks. Rita Moreno and Richard Kline were the celebrities helping their contestants charge through pun-filled statements in this episode. Rita and her lady had no trouble getting to the top, and even less difficulty holding off the guys. 

Let Match Game '76 run as I finished up my list. Towards the end of the episode, Gene mentions Richard's starring in a new show called Family Feud in the fall. Everyone congratulates his good fortune...but Richard's involvement with Feud will cause many headaches for all concerned in the coming months as the demand of starring in two game shows takes a toll on him.

Worked on writing for an hour after I finished. Everyone's out of breath but a lot happier after doing "Here We Go 'Round the Mulberry Bush" with Patti and Donald. They somehow have the energy to recite "The Walrus and the Carpenter," too. Their good humor won't last much longer, though...

Switched to Match Game PM while getting leftovers for dinner. A good-looking Naval officer played a pretty Israeli woman who didn't speak English that well and didn't seem to really understand the game. Charles has more luck with "__ Electric" in the Head-to-Head.

Finished the night after a shower exploring online. I re-signed with HBO Max. Yes, on one hand, they're a bit pricier than the competition...but they also have TCM movies, plus a decent selection of Looney Tunes, Tom & Jerry, and Scooby Doo shows and shorts and most everything DC put out, and frankly a far better selection of old and new movies than Paramount Plus. I mainly wanted them for the TCM movies I can no longer get without cable. 

Settled for an episode of old favorite Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman after I finally got on. Clark and Lois are about to consummate their marriage in the fourth season when H.G Wells (Terry Kieser) shows up and tells them they're under a curse. Bad things will happen if they make love. They have to go back in time, first to a medieval era where Clark is a Robin Hood-esque outlaw and Lois is the lady he loves, and then to the Wild West, where Clark is pretty much the Lone Ranger and Lois is a local reporter whose parents were kidnapped by bandits, to end the curse and prove why they're "Soul Mates." 

Sunday, March 13, 2022

When You Need a Laugh

Began a quick morning with cereal and grapes for breakfast. While bitterly cold for this time of year, in the mid-30's, at least it was sunny and not as windy as yesterday. I was able to take the bike normally this time.

Had a very long day at work. Sundays are busy regardless of when they're happening. It's the only day a lot of people who work during the week can shop. I ended up in the Express lane after the cashier who was there went home, and I had a lot of customers giving me trouble. Two in carts drove off before they finished paying for their orders, to my horror! I got caught up bagging their orders and forgot to look 

Earlier in the day, I swore I saw Rose doing her grocery shopping. I already shut down to go in for my co-worker, but I still called out to her. She didn't seem to see me. She must have been too busy focusing on her shopping to talk to me, or she didn't hear me. I texted her during break, then called her. She never responded when I gave her a thank-you card last week, either. 

Went straight home and upstairs after work. I'm actually glad it was quiet when I came in. As soon as I got upstairs, I checked my text. Rose did text me say she didn't want my thank you card and didn't want anything to do with me anymore, ever. I don't understand why, or what I did. Is she still upset because I didn't move in with Mom and wasn't more organized about getting out? I found a place and moved out at the appropriate date. Isn't that all that matters? What about her kids? She's taking more and more family away from them. She's apparently not speaking to Mom or Anny and her family, either. 

I screamed and cried and sobbed. I can't figure out what went wrong or how to get through to her. Why is she still angry that I didn't go and live with Mom? Because she doesn't want to deal with me anymore and doesn't think I'm capable of changing or surviving on my own? Because she thinks Mom didn't try hard enough to change her landlord's mind and get him to take me in? Because I agreed to live with a stranger instead of her? Because Mom does tend to be really hard on her? I don't understand it at all. 

The truth is...I'm not angry at her. I'm frustrated and disappointed with her. I still love her. She's my sister, and that means something to me, even if it means nothing to her. She's family. I thought family was important, but I guess it isn't. I tried calling Mom, too, but didn't get her. I'll try again with her tomorrow.

It was past 7 when I finally changed and went downstairs for dinner. Mixed up the taco meat from last night with lettuce, tomato, avocado, and sauce and vegetables from the sausage dinner earlier in the week. It actually tasted pretty good and was fairly filling.

Finished the night cheering myself up with comedy game shows in honor of Buzzr's Let's Laugh Marathon this coming Saturday. Chuck Barris' shows could get downright savage, with their occasionally dark mockery of people from all walks of life and levels of talent (including no talent). The savage Barris wit was applied to beauty pageants in The $1.98 Beauty Show from 1978. Confetti-throwing Rip Taylor introduced six semi-lovely ladies of dubious talents to be the "beauty of the week" who are judged by legitimate celebrities (most of whom also hosted The Gong Show). If nothing else, I do appreciate that the spoof included plus-sized ladies and acknowledged that women of any size can be beautiful and semi-talented. 

Comedy and game shows go a long way back. Groucho Marx made the original You Bet Your Life into a comedy variety show with a little bit of trivia thrown in somewhere. Here, he happily ogles a gorgeous (and less-than-brilliant) blonde and a lady who has a few unusual talents. 

The original Funny You Should Ask from 1968 has a five-celebrity panel giving their opinions on a topic. The contestants have to guess which star said which line. Since this is a Heatter-Quigley show, it has a few things in common with Hollywood Squares, including all the lines being scripted in advance. Otherwise, it's actually a pretty fun show. Too bad it didn't last a year, and this is one of the few episodes known to exist.

Speaking of Hollywood Squares, I threw in an episode from the late 90's-early 2000's version with Tom Bergenon hosting and Whoopi Goldberg in the center square. I have so many fond memories of watching that one in college. I'd switch between that and Jeopardy during commercials, then would settle on Wheel of Fortune after Squares ended. 

Every Second Counts from 1984 is sort of a cross between a trivia show and The Newlywed Game. Three married couples answer comic true-or-false or this-or-that questions. Right answers awarded seconds for the bonus round. The couple who got the most seconds alternated answering quick trivia for escalating prizes in order to win a car. The answers could be pretty cute, and host Bill Rafferty sure seemed to be having fun. This only lasted a year here, but it's another one that managed a longer run in England, going from 1986 to 1993. 

Of course, I had to do Match Game. My favorite episode of the daytime series is from early in 1977. Since the panelists on the upper tier already matched the contestant, they're not playing. The panelists on the lower desks take advantage of this to imitate those above them. As funny as Richard Dawson is as Brett Somers, the real winners are Jo Ann Pflug doing a hilarious Dick Gautier (complete with huge smile) and Fannie Flagg's utterly spot-on Charles Nelson Reilly! 

I would love to find more of Liar's Club, another comic celebrity panel show. The celebrities are giving a strange, often antique object, and three contestants bet on which celebrity is telling the truth about the antique. Allen Ludden presides over a panel of goofs that includes Larry Hovis, Dody Goodman, and Bob Eubanks.

Fox and MTV jumped headlong into trivia show satire in the late 90's and early 2000's. Fox's You Don't Know Jack is based after a popular computer and video game. Paul Reubens is basically Pee Wee's idea of a hip early 2000's host as he leads three contestants through answering challenging and strange questions. Idiot Savants from 1996 is sort of MTV's version of the same idea, only here, four people choose one topic they're especially good at and play against each other all week, answering rapid-fire questions from comedian Greg Fitzsimmons. 

Truthfully, both shows can be annoying and the "hip" quotient they try to achieve hasn't dated especially well, but the gameplay really is challenging, and they can both be seen as a breath of fresh air compared to Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and its many imitations. 

If you need to laugh as much as I do right now, check out these wild and wacky blasts from the past! (Funny You Should Ask comes in two parts. Thanks to Wink Martindale and his channel for the Liar's Club episode!)

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Taco Saturday Night

Got a quick start this morning with muffins and grapes. It was once again raining cats, dogs, and chickens when I came downstairs. I ended up calling Uber. Despite getting soaked waiting for it, it actually didn't take long or cost a lot for such a bad weather day. I got to work with just enough time to put my jacket and lunch bag in my locker.

Work was insanely busy through about 2 PM, after which it died down to on-and-off steady. The weather did its part. We did get heavy snow...for all of 20 minutes. The real trouble were frigid gale-force winds that blew everyone around all day long. Good thing I was cashiering today; they have plenty of bagging help on weekends. 

Had a harder time finding an Uber to take me home. By this point, any precipitation had long since vanished and the sun had emerged, but the chilly and nasty winds persisted. Not to mention, I was off during the height of rush hour. I was lucky it only took me 10 minutes to find a driver and another 13 for them to arrive. 

Went straight upstairs when I got home for a snack and to watch a couple of shows on streaming. Since this is Women's History Month, I did an episode of You Can't Do That On Television on Paramount Plus revolving around "Sexual Equality." The boys on the show demand equality and tell Christine she should give them a chance to host. Great, says Christine, but that means they also get the pies, slime, and (whispers) water intended for her, too. Meanwhile, we get a round of girls vs boys jokes, with Lisa wondering why more girls aren't executed in front of the firing squad and the boys asking the Senator why Christine gets to drive the car and they don't. 

Webby's equally happy to join in to "Escape To/From Atlantis!" on the 2017 Ducktails...if she can ever figure out how to explain to her grandmother she's along for the ride. Scrooge takes the kids and Launchpad to find the legendary lost city. Donald, however, is working for Flintheart Glomgold, the second-richest duck in the world, who will stop at nothing to make sure Scrooge never finds that treasure!

Finished the night online after tacos for dinner and a shower with the 1997 animated Pippi Longstocking at Pluto TV. I go further into this version of the beloved children's books from Sweden at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog. 

Lawrence Welk and his crew did their charming "Irish Show" in 1979. There were lots of Irish reels from Bobby Burgess and his partner Elaine Niverson, and Jack Imel and Mary Lou Metzger contributed an adorable tap routine to "If You're Irish, Come Into the Parlor." Arthur Duncan did a waltz clog to "Little Annie Rooney Waltz," and even Mexican beauty Anacani contributed "Shamrocks, Shillelaghs, and Shenanigans." 

And don't forget to set your clocks ahead for Daylight Savings tonight!