Girls Need Female Action Figures!


Famous female action figures for our daughters!!! That is what they  need!!!
I woke up today with an idea that I wish I could afford to put into motion. I mentioned it briefly in an earlier post but in my slumber last night it became much clearer to me.

As a mom and grandmother, I have spent a small fortune buying action figures that were theme related for my children and my grandchildren. My oldest son in the 1970’s had every action figure and creature related to Star Wars and every flying machine from each of the Star Wars movies. He also had Superman and Daredevil figures and Wrestlemania guys equipped with an actual ring. Many a battle was held in his bedroom where Andre the Giant fought Roddy Roddy Piper and a plethora of other wrestling stars, all of whom he could name and quote their current wrestling statistics. He loved all those heroes. They were part of his childhood and long after he grew up, he saved portions of his array of collections, some of which became valuable items. Many are now boxed up in his attic or on display in his home office.

Fifteen and a half years after Seth was born, I had my second child, Johnny, (a wonderful 40th birthday surprise,) and he had me searching for Power Rangers and transformers that he enjoyed like his older brother before him. He created universes where his action figures saved the world from destruction and he used to make mini films with them, moving each figure frame by frame to appear like they were doing amazing things. (I believe a few of his childhood films are still on you tube somewhere, including a zombie movie where the three stooges were turned into zombies if memory serves me correctly.)

And both my boys would often surprise me with my own version of super heroes after visiting those comic stores where they bought Daredevil or Superman comics (or other  figures that were trending at the time). They came home once with a Sherlock Holmes action figure and magazine for me, and a Shakespeare figure equipped with a quarto and quill for good old mom! Former students bought me a Xena action figure because they thought I was a true warrior princess!  (I used to be able to do a great imitation of that Xena warrior yell on the playground to round them up – ahyayayayaiiiii-)  And a few years after my second husband passed away, a man I once dated bought me a Joan Jett doll since he was former fan of when I was a rocker chick and played in an all girl’s band in the 1960’s… a long long time ago in a galaxy far far away…

But, my question is this… WHY HASN’T ANYONE DONE FAMOUS WOMEN IN HISTORY ACTION FIGURES?  Where are Susan B Anthony? Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Gloria Steinem or Harriet Tubman? Sure, we can have every princess on the planet at Toys R Us, but why can’t we have REAL women in history as action heroes for girls to play with? Every March when I taught women’s history I would take out my famous females playing cards. (I had 4 boxes of them, two different sets.) There were women who were famous firsts in science/ medicine, civil rights, politics, inventors, women’s health, education, sports, entertainment etc. And each card had the picture of the famous woman on the front and their bio on the back. We would play various games with the cards but mostly they were used for research because in February and March I always had my American Celebration. A way to encompass Black History, Presidents, and Women and actually TEACH children about American history. With state testing looming overhead I found by combining Black History Month and Women’s History Month I could stuff in all the important historical figures they needed to know and testing didn’t push history to the wayside.  It allowed me to make sure students understood the importance of those who paved the way in our country. Perhaps some of those millennials at the DNC who did not understand the political process would have better understood how things worked if they had been a student of mine in 4th or 5th grade and taken a journey into the past in women’s history in my classroom.

I wish I had the capital to make a little Susan B Anthony and a Harriet Tubman doll. Or Sybil Ludington with her horse (She rode further than Paul Revere on that famous night to let people know the British were coming.) Why is it that Legos and Matel and all the toy manufacturers can make thousands of Disney Princess figures and Star Wars figures (But very few Prince Leah’s by the way, I can never find her for my grand daughter) but they totally over look the women who paved the way for this momentous accomplishment that Hillary Clinton just made. If there are any investors out there…. let me know. I have a list of women who deserve to be the heroes (heroines) for all the little girls out there growing up. They don’t need dolls with lots of crazy make-up, or even Barbie with unrealistic measurements when there were and are real honest to goodness women who lived and died so that females today could have the rights that they do now  in our country and in many places around the world.

The next time my grand daughter, Toli has a tea party she can have it with Grandma and the Hillary Clinton action figure  I just ordered. (Part of the cost goes to fund her election.) That should be fun. Included in our party will be my River Song figure (From Doctor Who), My Xena and Joan Jette action figures as well as Rosie the Riveter too. And if she wants to include Ariel and Cinderella they can join us as well. All the girls are welcome. And we can drink our tea and discuss literature, politics, being strong and powerful and how to change the world…. Pass the sugar substitute please…Girl Power!!!!!!


(1966 photo of friend Marla on the left and Moi on the right. Today we are still trying to change the world in our own separate ways.)

Update:  I did find on eBay a few female action figures that were made in the 1980’s. Annie Oakley is one, Rosie the Riveter is another.  And in the 1950’s tiny glass figures of a several American women were made that went into a lovely curio cabinet.  (Now they are priced at about 500 dollars a set.) It appears that we need to go back and give our little girls real honest to goodness heroines to be proud of.  And there are also actual paper doll sets on eBay and amazon of famous women that were created in the 90’s.  I’m not sure how we got so off track, but we need to re-establish our priorities again and instead of Kardashians give our little girls real heroes to look up to. They are out there, we just need to look…..



Is Hillary Too Intelligent For Republicans???

I read an article the other day stating that the problem with the GOP is that President Obama is much too intelligent for them to understand. It stated that his ability to see the bigger picture and understand far reaching problems confuses them. It also mentioned that he focuses not just on the here and now, but on the direction in which the country needs to head and all that evidently, is just too taxing on many of our Republican leaders and their constituency.

I tend to agree with that to some extent. I feel there is a large amount of one-issue conservatives in Congress who are a lot like cattle, following and meandering slowly along with the crowd and failing to think for themselves. (That is not to say there aren’t a few deep thinking intelligent people on the GOP side.) Sadly, the majority of them seem to lack the ability to respond to stimuli, the weather around them, and can only continue to live like their grandfathers did in the past. They see themselves as elite and above the common man. And yet, if anyone is common, it is those individuals who are not open minded enough to see into the hearts and minds of our citizens in need or in despair.

BUT, if you think Obama is a smart man, here’s the clincher… IF you use IQ points, HILLARY BLOWS EVERY SINGLE PRESIDENT WE HAVE EVER HAD OUT THE WATER WITH HER HIGHLY GIFTED IQ. She is in the top 1 percent of people on the planet and would be our most brilliant President to date.

As a recently retired teacher,I studied gifted education and I taught it for over 36 years. I understand the nature and needs of the gifted population of students (top 2 percent of the nation) and the highly gifted student, (top 1 percent). So while I am not in the top 1 percent like Mrs. Clinton, (the top 2 percent works fine for me), I still comprehend how her brain works. I have raised gifted and highly gifted children and so far I have one grandson who is in that category. While vastly different, all these individuals have one thing in common. They ALL have vision, and their vision is not often seen or understood by the rest of us.

Mozart could hear a symphony in raindrops; Beethoven could feel the vibrations in the air and write something as magnificent as “Ode to Joy” when he was on the verge of becoming totally deaf. Few of us could accomplish those tasks.

These uniquely brilliant individuals were thought to be odd and were often shunned as outcasts in society. Van Gogh painted “Stary Night” from the window of an insane asylum. Scientists recently discovered that he drew the accurate motion of the earth as it rotated around the sun in that painting by using the precise swirls in his rendering that can be seen through telescopes. Incrediby, HE could see the swirls with the naked eye. He could see movement all around him when nobody else could. But, instead of calling him brilliant, they thought he was crazy. Yet all the while the molecular motion still existed. However, society locked him away for being different. Why? Because he was a genius and saw things  that the average Joe could not see nor comprehend. And Obama, because of the color of his skin was not supposed to be able to see the “whole picture” in politics. He wasn’t supposed to be that much smarter than everyone in Congress and so they hated him for it. How dare a man of color be so brilliant? And worse yet, now a woman is going to threaten the sanctity of the good old boys club!

And that, I feel, is how Trump slid by and became the nominee. Yes, half of the population would rather vote for a bigoted idiot than vote for a brilliant, experienced woman because her brains scare the hell out of them. She’s too darn smart and that makes them uncomfortable.  THIS is just ONE reason why Republicans hate her so much. They can blame a million other trivial things on her, but really they are thinking, “HOW DARE A WOMAN BE SMARTER THAN EVERYONE! HOW DARE SHE BE ABLE TO FIGURE OUT SOLUTIONS MORE QUICKLY AND SOLVE PROBLEMS IN A MORE LOGICAL MANNER THAN EVERYONE IN THE ROOM!”

And all I can think is, how did this woman even survive her entire life in the political arena near these buffoons? The patience she learned in dealing with them is a feat in itself. She has always been wise beyond her years and ahead of her time and she is smarter than anyone in politics today. Her experience, her temperament, and her intellect will make her one of the best Presidents this country has ever had. And just like history will write something similar about Obama being brilliant and suave, history will give him credit for being in the top five of our very best leaders. And, if given the chance, Hillary will be in that group as well.

It is astounding to me that she even has to fight for the win. Especially when we have Donald Trump, who clearly has not read a book in the last 25 years. (If he ever did read and finish a book during his entire life without cliff’s notes.)

So on one hand we have a man who can’t control his temper and spouts off bigoted comments like gunshots, without even understanding that he is being racist or politically incorrect.  And then we have Hillary. Who is female and Republicans and many citizens can not stand her. And because of GOP lies people say they don’t trust her.  Why the hell not? Because she gives folks an intelligent answer that isn’t simplistic?

Have we dumbed down America so much that people cannot think beyond the amount of characters on twitter? It is obvious that most folks don’t know or understand what Hillary or Obama are talking about. And yes, it would be easier to shout out…”Tricky Trump” or “Dumb Donald” over and over again to compete with Trump’s crooked Hillary rhetoric. But, as an intellectual with actual decisive plans on how to help America, Hillary just can’t do that. It isn’t who she is.

May I suggest that people READ Abigail Adam’s letters to her husband John. (Or watch the film 1776.) And if you can’t muster up the stamina to read a book, then there are many Children’s books written about her. I have one at home called “Remember The Ladies”. The eloquence of her written words is simply breathtaking. In fact, if you really want to feel somewhat lacking in articulating your emotions, check out the expressiveness of common foot soldiers during the Civil War. Their beautiful, lyrical letters are astounding compared to the men and women in Congress today. People had a mastery for language and communication back then.

In 2016 we may have SMART phones, but we have DUMB people!!! We have become an inarticulate society and thus people like the simplicity of Trump’s slogan, “Make America Great.”  To someone with a higher IQ like Hillary, that comment is unnecessary, because we know America is already great. But to the Trump crowd, it is all they can process. A few phrases here or there is all their minds can handle. Much like Trump himself.

I, for one, want a President who I think is smarter than I am. One of the reasons I disliked George W so much was because I knew I was much smarter than he was. And I couldn’t respect a President who wouldn’t be able to answer any of my questions. (Another reason Obama was such a breath of fresh air. What a pleasure it was and is to listen to him speak!)

I NEED Hillary to be our next President because she is the most intelligent candidate with the most experience. Yes, I won’t lie, it totally rocks that she is a woman. (It is long over due.) But, she is just so damn smart, and a solution sort of person. She’s a real problem solver and I would give my eyeteeth to watch her work. America NEEDS her! I need her. My children and grandchildren need her. We all need an intelligent role model if we want a society of smart people!!! We don’t want to be known as the nation of Dumb and Dumber!!!

You know, The thing I miss the most about being retired from teaching is standing up in front of a class of gifted and highly gifted students, and posing a question to them. I’d watch the look on their faces as their eyes lit up one at a time when they thought of an answer. And I’d go around the room and ask the students with their hands up what they thought the answer could be. I’d write on the board a condensed version of what each student said, until every child had shared a thought.

And then I would stand back and together the class and I would look at the amazingly creative answers before us and give a collective sigh or a “Whoa!”

And from that brainstorming session they would usually break into groups and either write an essay, a short story, present their ideas using technology; a power point, flip chart presentation, a poem, a play, an illustration, a song, a mini movie… any creative way they could conjure up to show me the answer to my question, they did it! Filled with excitement as they busily got to work to create their answers.

And ALWAYS, always, always, their answers were far beyond the scope of what I had imagined they would be. They were wonderful answers!!!  If ONLY America gave Hillary a chance so she too could surprise us and do her thing. Then and only then can this country get back on track.

I beg of you dear readers, not to let this nation turn into a book called, “America for Dummies.” PLEASE! Let this highly gifted woman win in the fall and lead us into greatness, knowledge, and peace!!

All Are Punished!

160612060626-orlando-shooting-exlarge-169All Are Punished! (A Poem about Dallas.)

Falling with the elegant grace of a dancer,

Splatters of crimson red spread in slow motion,

The deafening noise of gunshots continue in succession.

Confusion and panic erupt through mass hysteria,

As people race for cover.

Bodies plummet to the ground while dark liquid consumes their form and covers the pavement.

Fear on the faces of the innocents,

Disbelief and shock on a cluster of shapes running.

Black or white it doesn’t matter.

Nobody sees color in the crowd of figures trying to get to safety.

They are all afraid,

They are all in peril.

Citizens protesting in peace,

While officers rush to save the masses.

Yet, still the shots shriek out from unknown locations.

Dead! Dead! Dead! Dead! Dead!! The shots blast!

Violence erupting from despair?

A conspiracy group trying to shift the blame?

Police risking uncertain death to protect citizens,

Who hesitate to trust men and women in uniform,

Until they see the compassion in their eyes.

A peaceful protest turned to devastation by weapons that NO civilian should ever possess.

Do we blame the government that allowed these killing machines to be purchased?

Do we blame our leaders or the actual weapons themselves?

What about the insane being who pulled the trigger?

Who do we blame?


It is a collective tragedy, we all  bear some responsibility.

As The Bard wrote so long ago,


We blame them ALL!




Crying for Dallas!

crying 2848f1f48d676fe617a464b003aeee2e0crying

I woke up this morning to see all the chaos that happened last night in Dallas. In a world where guns are so easy to access, people who can’t deal with their frustrations any more lose control. And they seem to lose it by killing other human beings.

Black or white, people who can buy dangerous military style weapons hurt and kill other individuals when life gets too difficult to endure. America’s biggest problem is not the top one percent or the cost of college. (Although those are issues of concern, they are not our top priority.) Our biggest problem is that every single day we are killing one another. Every time you turn on the news you see people trying to annihilate anyone who looks or acts differently than they do. Each night as I press the on button to my television, or click on my iPad, I can’t help but feel stunned and powerless. How do we stop this needless violence? What can we do to save America?

After all the senseless shootings against the African American community in this country, this horrific incident could not have been totally unexpected. But, a few sick individuals do NOT represent every person!  And had those disturbed individuals not had access to assault rifles in the first place, those brave officers would still be alive. Had the GOP allowed another vote when Democrats formed a sit in, maybe things would have been different. Maybe not. But once again, assault rifles murdered individuals who should not have died.

I blame the Republicans in Congress for not compromising with Democrats and voting for common sense gun laws that reflect the wishes of the American People. The blood of those five officers in Dallas is on the hands of every Republican who voted against banning assault rifles. They had another chance to get this right after the Orlando massacre but they decided that voting against the Democrats rather than FOR the safety of the American people was more important than representing the citizens who elected them to serve and keep them safe.

How many more of our dear citizens must die before Congress wakes up and makes our country safer? How many people have to bleed before Senators and Representatives do the right thing and vote on laws to prevent at least some of the violence that is plaguing our nation?

We all are sick of the violence. People are feeling helpless, hurt, and stunned. A peaceful protest turned into a horrible massacre of law enforcement officers and that is unconscionable. More precious lives lost. I am just sick inside.

Change the gun laws, respect one another, look beyond the color of a person’s skin, beyond their gender, beyond their uniform, and find kindness in your heart. We need to make America SAFE again. And Congress, work together and DO YOUR JOB!!! PLEASE!!!

Black Man Crying

How Does Brexit affect my favorite shows Game of Thrones and Outlander?

The world is an uproar!  And after the shock of all the voting in the UK and trying to understand the consequences and just how it affects the United States, today I suddenly wondered, what does Brexit mean for two of my favorite shows, “Game of Thrones” and “Outlander”? Will we fans be forced to stop seeing Jon Snow or never again look upon Jaime and Claire after waiting decades to get their characters on screen?? Please tell me it isn’t so! How can Politics change my television choices??? Obviously, a lot.

As a political junkie it gets me really annoyed that the masses, evidently across the pond as well as in America, don’t think, research, or do their homework before they decide to vote. I don’t understand it.  The last article I read said that the folks in the UK wanted to revote now because they didn’t understand the consequences of what might happen!  REALLY????  And all I could think about was what if that happened in America if a certain reality TV star wins the election. The consequences would be horrifying! And then people would say, “Gee, I didn’t think it would be so bad.” or  “I didn’t realize he didn’t know anything about world issues.”  I don’t want that to happen in my country!!!

Is it so difficult for people to THINK before they decide to vote for “unorthodox” candidates who either don’t understand politics or who want to start a revolution without thinking ahead about the possible consequences their vote might cause? (Yeah, that IS what happened in the UK!! And we need to learn from their hastiness.)  Because like America, many of those voters didn’t really understand what they were voting for. Political decisions affect every aspect of our lives!! And people had better understand the fall out before they cast their votes. Just listening to a dynamic speaker, or someone who sounds great isn’t enough. (May I remind you that Hitler was a master orator?)

Ya know…Revolutions sound amazing, but guess what? In reality, not only can they affect our food supplies and possibly cause our economy to plummet or stagnate, (If we follow history). They also can affect our art, music, theatre, literature, and now our technology, as well as our film industry. Yes, our movies may get cut back, changed completely, or disappear entirely from lack of funding. So yeah, our  votes can affect not only our economy, but our internet, our schools, and our spoiled daily lives which include what we watch on television and go to see at the movies.

And yes, we have become a spoiled society who protests for one thing thinking how radical we are and how it will change our country if we start over and rebuild, so we vote for a revolution and a drastic change. But, you see, we also are a society who likes to stream movies on our phones while we sit in the car, use the restroom, or take pictures of our food in restaurants and post it to everyone in the world. Surprise gang.  RARELY, can you do that in a revolution!

And, what if those films we love so much can no longer be made??? What if, our favorite television shows are cancelled because they cannot be filmed in certain countries or are just too costly to make? And what if,like Cuba, for decades, we can no longer have access to world news or  internet? Yeah, revolutions sound great but they are usually messy and dirty, and not the stuff that movies make them out to be. They are not glamorous!!!

The same millennials who are protesting to keep fighting for a certain senator long after he gave it his all and lost fair and square, would not be so happy if they are too stubborn to cast their votes for the Democratic Nominee and thus handed over the election to the bigoted option running for the GOP. (Who they don’t seem to care for either.)  Those young protestors could quite easily be left standing in bread lines without their cell phones. How would they survive then??? Because the GOP’s candidate would certainly put us in a worse situation than the UK is in. But, hey, don’t worry.  The rich will still have their golf courses.

I personally live with a daily reminder of just how terrible it can be when a majority of people vote for a bad candidate.  In Florida alone, we lost millions of dollars and thousands of jobs because Governor Rick Scott refused to renew the Florida Film incentives. So now all the movies and TV shows that were made down here in our lovely climate all year long, were forced to set up in Georgia. I know because my son, who was working steadily down here and bought a home locally, now rents it out and works in the Atlanta area. I get to see him a few weeks out of the year and that is heartbreaking for me as his mother.  I miss him.  It has had disadvantageous affects for Florida economically, but thankfully, no global complications. However, it was an unnecessary outcome stemming from poor decision making prompted by uninformed voters. So while Florida lost millions of dollars and put thousands of employed people out of work, the film industry regrouped and bought hundreds of acres of land and built studies in Georgia and they are giving  thousands of jobs to Georgia locals.  All jobs and money that would have all gone to Florida’s folks. So voting for the wrong candidate affects more than you think. It affects every aspect of society!! And in this case it affected our public schools, our government jobs, and our local film industry totally disappeared when it was thriving and producing jobs. All because a GOP candidate had plenty of money to make great commercials and got people to vote for him, even though he wasn’t the best person for the job..

I don’t know about any of you, but  I personally love my little inconsequential life just like it is. I am a retired teacher who volunteers for a non profit organization that helps children. I write curriculum for the bluapple poetry network, I take art classes, I write a blog, and I enjoy my three grandchildren. I earn a small teacher’s pension and get a little social security after teaching for 36 years. My life is not extravagant, but it pretty much how I planned it to be and I like it. It’s safe, it’s filled with joy, and I can pay my bills and pretty much afford everything I need. I can get HBO, Starz, and Netflix to watch my favorite shows, I can download kindle books on my iPad and my iPhone, I can use an app to order my groceries on days I am ill, and because of my access to everything on the internet, I am able to order anything on line, even Disney DVD’s that are no longer available commercially,  from eBay, for my grandchildren. Life couldn’t be better and I think I am really a very lucky woman.  And, guess what? I don’t want any of that to change because some people didn’t take the time to THINK before they cast their votes.  I don’t want an incompetent  Presidential candidate to win, nor do I want a revolution.  I just got back on my feet after the Bush years where I lost everything. So my life under the current administration has gotten back on track and my senior years ahead will be wonderful if all goes as planned.  But now watching what is happening in the UK is an eye opener to what might happen here if the wrong person gets into the White House.

I urge voters to do their research as I would tell my former students.  Use 3 to 5 sources on any topic you look up on the internet, because crazy people as well as competent ones write things on line. Seek out the truth and be careful what you wish for.  Don’t think a revolution will solve all your problems or that a candidate who had a reality show actually understands world affairs.  Learn from history that we need to look to the past just as much as we need to look to the future to seek our answers.  And vote wisely. Sometimes we have to vote for the candidate who is the best but may not have been our first choice. Sometimes we have to vote against rather than for, and sometimes we can actually make a progressive change in history with our votes by voting in the first female President of the United States.  Sometimes we CAN make things even better!!!  And perhaps, THEN we all can hope that “Game of Thrones” will still be on HBO!  And that we can go to the movies and enjoy a new “Star Wars” Film.  May the Force Be With You when you VOTE!!!


A Funny Thing Happened To Me At The Food Market!

Photo on 3-12-15 at 3.25 PM #5 (1)

A funny thing happened to me at Doris’ food market today… I was standing in the check out line and I took a glance at the man in front of me loading up his groceries. It occurred to me that he was extremely handsome. I mean, VERY good looking. He wasn’t a kid, or an elderly gentleman, but a ruggedly, attractive  guy over 40 who had captured my attention.

Now this is NOT something that ordinarily happens to me at the check out line when I buy food. I run my errands and don’t gawk at men. Especially since I shop for groceries near a senior community, so the majority of males who I see shopping for dinner are either in one of those go cart apparatuses or are using a walker. (Not that there is anything wrong with that. After my accident two years ago, I too was restricted to those devices for a few months. ) But, because I either see young kids or really old people where I shop, I don’t think about hunky men. And I rarely ever see a handsome man that turns my head at the food store. I just don’t. In fact, I don’t go clubbing or out looking for that sort of thing. I might go to a Sherlock Holmes lecture, a poetry slam, or a Shakespeare festival now and then, or check out a science fiction convention, but Klingons and old Jedi Knights are not especially sexy to me. So, I admit it, today I couldn’t help but stare while I loaded up my food on the check out counter. And this unusually handsome fellow looked as yummy as the Italian pastry he was putting on the conveyer belt. Delicious!

And just as my mind began to wander…. I was brought back to earth by him speaking out, “Hi Pop, I got all your groceries loaded for you.” And there walks up an older gentleman with similar features who was the reflection of what this man would probably look like 25 or 30 years down the road. I glanced from father to son and realized that while the son was giving me heart palpitations, the father just looked like a nice older gentleman. And then something dawned on me that was horrifying!!!

I suddenly realized that most likely I was closer in age to the father, then to the son. Yep. I looked closely at the father and he was probably in his late 60’s or early 70’s, putting his son right around the age of my oldest child. And instantly I felt like a dirty old lady… and rather silly. And I began to laugh and could not stop.  The cashier and the two men turned and looked at me rather puzzled and I just stated through waves of laughter, “Don’t mind me, I was just thinking about something funny.” And the men proceeded to check out while I continued to giggle and cover my mouth because I couldn’t contain my chuckles.

When it was finally my turn, I greeted the gal behind the register and she was now  laughing because I was. (We all know that laughter is engaging and catches on.)  “You seem to be having a lovely day,” she smiled.  And I responded still stifling my laughter, “Yes, I certainly am.”

And so, today I had a real slap in the face of life. We really don’t perceive ourselves as we are and we don’t ever feel old on the inside. And I think I understood what most men and women who are in their 60’s probably find to be true. That we are likely more physically attracted to younger people than to those our own age. Unless of course you are fortunate enough to still be in love with the same person for decades. Then you don’t seem to notice the aging. You see the person behind and beyond the exterior. And that is a wonderful gift.

I remember not noticing how gravely ill my younger son’s father looked at the end of his life because I didn’t really see the dying man. Instead I thought about the young man I fell in love with because it was his eyes and smile that stared back at me. That was much easier to bear than the person who had dwindled down to skin and bones. We see what we want to see. And love truly does blind us to age, illness, and even sometimes to flaws.

But as a single woman in her 60’s, who doesn’t go out looking for anything in life except enriching my heart and mind, I don’t really think about attraction very often. The love that engulfs me is that of my children and my grandchildren. I am still working on changing the world, getting Hillary elected President, making sure gun laws are safer .. so who has time for that dating nonsense?

But, today I realized that the handsome 40 something man at the food market looked mighty good. REALLY good actually. And when he glanced at me, most likely the truth is,  he probably didn’t think anything at all, or if he did, he may have thought I looked a little like his mother. And that’s pretty funny.  Oh here come the giggles again…

**Clarification: I am not in any way putting down men my age. They are all adorable in the same way women my age are beautiful. We are, what we are! And the years of wisdom we have gained are a thing of beauty in itself!!! Peace out. xo 🙂

Zombies Love Jane Austen


Zombies Love Jane Austen

I have been a Jane Austen purest since I was 16 years old. Ever since I opened the novel “Pride and Prejudice”and became acquainted with the self assured, gutsy heroine, Elizabeth Bennett and the dashing Mr. Darcy. I fell in love with those two characters and the novel, which has been my dearest friend for over five decades. So, when my youngest son informed me that I would genuinely enjoy the film, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” I scoffed at him and thought he was crazy. I mean how on earth could I lower myself to watching such balderdash, and yet… I was intrigued. Plus, I simply couldn’t resist the challenge. And guess what? My son was right!! I just finished watching the movie and I LOVED it!! I never thought it would be a film that I’d even like, let alone love, but I did. It was terrific! (For a Regency Zombie/Jane Austen film.) Yes, I admit it, I really, really loved it!!!!

I am still trying to figure out how the director managed to pull off such perfect Regency costumes, impeccable period etiquette, with such flawless finesse, while using adept British actors who could in one moment switch from civility, to fiercely taking down zombies with a sword! Honestly, it was stunningly brilliant! And I’m not even a horror film fan. And no, I don’t watch “The Walking Dead.” It’s gross. In fact, the only Zombie movie I ever liked was the one called “Warm Bodies” and that was because it was a clever comedic take on “Romeo and Juliet.” I avoid gory, icky horror movies at all cost. But this one was different.

There was something really wonderful about this movie. Or should I say, something delightful about how they infused Jane Austen’s magical dialogue into the middle of fighting disgusting Zombies. And they did it while using direct lines from the book!!! That’s what had me hooked. So even though the sub plot was a Zombie battle/take over, the protagonists looked, sounded, acted, like the beloved characters I have come to know so well over the years. And the lines the characters spoke, were the same exquisite phrases that I know by heart. That was the best!!! It really was well done. Imagine seeing Darcy and Elizabeth go back and forth using Jane’s dialogue, while watching out for the Undead or beheading a zombie wearing a bonnet in perfectly coordinated Edwardian pantaloons!!! It seriously worked!!! Really!!!

And unbelievably, the romance between Darcy and Lizzy was beautifully captured as well as the relationship between Jane and Bingly. Yet, they were killing zombies right and left. But somehow, it all blended together like a waltz. Picture the ball scene, gracefully dancing and reciting those perfect Austen words one moment and then slicing the head off a zombie the next. Hard to imagine? I thought so too until I saw the film.
Not only did I love it, I’m going to buy it and watch it again! The DVD will happily join my Jane Austen collection of books and films. And on one rainy day when I don’t want to venture out doors, or I am tired of all the channels on television, all the movies on Netflix, or shows on HULU, I will reach up on my shelf and slip in the movie again and watch Lizzy and Darcy go after Zombies while they have their intense repartee with one another.

I think what I loved the most about this movie, was that this strong, kick ass version of Elizabeth Bennett really represented the character I imagined when I first read the book when I was about 15 years old (In the mid 1960′s). It was Lizzy’s strength, independence, unbridled honesty, and how she spoke her mind (during a time when women were usually quiet and submissive) that I admired. She was unbelievably brave and thus became my favorite literary heroine. Somehow, the strength of this particular Ms. Bennett, through her masterful fighting skills typified what I had seen in her character from the very beginning. And possibly why I have always adored Austen. She created women who were intelligent and she made her female protagonists strong and uncompromising, even while they politely curtsied. It’s why I like to read about powerful female heroines in novels, or enjoy seeing leading ladies with courage, and why I want a strong female President. Jane Austen created women like that on paper. And here we are a few hundred years later and Lizzy Bennett is still kicking ass. (Except this time she’s killing zombies.)

If you love “Pride and Prejudice”, you will enjoy this film. If you like Zombies and Jane Austen you will really love it. And that dear readers, is “a truth universally acknowledged”……