Saturday, May 21, 2016

The One With The Stolen Opening Credits

Way back when the NBC TV show "Friends" was new, its opening credits bothered me.
I thought it was a straight up rip-off of the opening credits for another TV show that had starred Ellen Degeneres.

Not the theme song.
The thing that was ripped off was the part that has all the friends sitting together on a couch with a lamp outside in the park.

Plus, I was annoyed by the name of the show.
I was pretty sure the sit-com that Ellen had been in had also had a title that was similar to "Friends".  Specifically, I thought her show had been called "These Friends of Mine" or "These So-Called Friends of Mine".  But by the time NBC's "Friends" premiered, Ellen's ABC show was called "Ellen" and the opening credits sequence had been changed, so I couldn't very well compare the two.

Plus, back in 1994 when "Friends" was new, the internet was also new, and YouTube didn't exist. While there were some, there weren't a lot of resources one could use to look up original opening credit sequences of TV shows.  And wasn't familiar with how to find such things.   So, I kept my annoyances to myself and moved on.

Well, I recently started binge-watching "Friends" on Netflix, and the whole couch in the park with the lamp thing started rubbing on my nerves again.   This time, I went to the www, and I WAS RIGHT ALL ALONG!

My query "wasn't ellen degeneres in a tv show called these friends of mine?" brought me this answer:  Yeah.  There was a show called "These Friends of Mine", and Ellen Degeneres was one member of an ensemble cast.  However, her character was so strong, the show was reworked putting her character in the forefront, and it was renamed "Ellen".

Further digging found that "These Friends of Mine" aired on ABC beginning in March of 1994.
The sit-com "Friends" premiered on NBC September 1994.

And I continued to search for the main reason for this post:
The opening title sequences. 

At the very end of the opening credits, characters from both shows are on a couch.  Outdoors.  With a lamp.
Maybe this bothers me way more than it should, but watch the two show opens yourself, and tell me if you were ABC, wouldn't you think NBC had kinda sorta ripped you off both in show name... and couch scene? 

Here's the one from "These Friends of Mine/Ellen":

And here's the one from "Friends" six months later:

For most of two decades, I've known this.
And now you can never *not* know it.

You're welcome.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Paperback vs. Hardcover

I had been waiting weeks for a book to become available at my library, and when I received the email notice that it was finally in, I giddily scurried to the library to fetch it.

The Husband got an earful when I got home. "I waited all this time," I grumbled, "and they gave me a paperback instead of a hardcover.  Paperback isn't really a book.  It's like drinking beer from a can instead of a glass. It's the difference between Pringles and real potatoes. I don't even want to read this now."
"Yeah, beer from a can isn't my first choice either," The Husband tried to agree.


The Husband asks what I'm reading. I show him the paperback I brought home from the library.
"What?  I thought you said you weren't going to read that."
"I said I didn't *want* to."

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Degrees vs. Experience

The very loud student in the back row declared that this was going to be the last exam of his college career before he graduated on Sunday.
The very loud student in the back row declared that he just didn't care anymore.
The very loud student in the back row proudly declared that he had failed his Media Buying exam, but he had earned enough class participation points to get a D- for a final grade.
"After graduation, my grade point doesn't matter anymore!" said the very loud student in the back row.

The irony is, after graduation, he will have a four-year degree.  And since I am still working on earning mine, *his* resume gets put on the stack above mine.
...if mine makes it onto the stack at all.

Congratulations, business owners who pass over a resume with experience for the one with a degree.
This is the guy who's going to decide if your advertising dollars would be best spent on radio, TV, print, or web.
And he just doesn't care.

Alma Grand-Mater

I had just finished taking my last exam of the semester, and as I walked across campus playing a game on my phone...
(Pausing to point out that I am a college student and I am playing games on a smartphone)
...when the wolf whistle hits me.
"Looking good, GRANDMA!"

"Hey asshole!  Speak up and quit slouching!" totally what I wish I'd said.
::self five::

Saturday, April 30, 2016

A Thank You Letter to Past Roses

Dear Past Roses,

Thank you for getting enrolled in college and starting us on the path to get that Bachelor's degree.
I know you wish you had done it sooner, but the important point is that you *did* it.  Thank you for doing that and not leaving it for me to take care of.

I appreciate how hard it was for you to get it done, too.
The online application process sucked eggs.
The vague communications that the school sent were frustrating and confusing.
I watched you weep on the phone while you tried to decide whether to sign up late for orientation or just wait one more semester to start.  Either choice would have been okay, honey, but you sucked it up and made the bold decision to just go for it.  (I admire you for that, by the way.  I am now more willing to step outside my comfort zone in order to move ahead.  Because *you've* done it, I know I can do it, too.)
It was also very good of you to refrain from smacking the snarky chick in orientation who made remarks about how your new campus email address was "right there" in that one confusing and frustrating letter.

The learning curve was steep.  You dug in and overcame it.

These were all small steps, but they added up to a big move forward.

I can't tell you just how grateful I am to you for getting me where I am today.
I have such a long way to go, yet, but if you hadn't done the hard work when you did, I'd have even farther to go from here.

Thank you, Past Roses.
You inspire me to do good things for Future Roses.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

"I don't know" is not a dirty word.

Dear board president,

It's okay to say, "I don't know."
In fact, many of us would rather you simply say, "I don't know" rather than take 12 minutes to explain all the reasons why you don't have an answer.


Wednesday, April 20, 2016

It's Okay to Use Me

It bothers me a great deal to see so many people SO confused about when to use the word "me" that they choose to use "I" incorrectly instead.

"We're selling our truck.  Contact Mike or I."
No, contact ME.

"This is Jimmy and I at the beach."
No, this is ME at the beach.

Remove the other people you are grouped with, and the correct pronoun is more obvious.

Does this bother you, too?
Or, is it just... ME?

Monday, April 18, 2016

Midnight Snack

I do not want to be awake.
I do not like it, for goodness sake.
I've already been to bed.
Too many thoughts running through my head.

I've been to bed two times tonight.
Things left unfinished, things just not right.
I finished some homework, talked with my son.
Made things settled, a little more done.

Shall I try bed again?  Third time's the charm?
What's there to lose?  Really, no harm.

Wish me luck. I'm gonna need it.
When the brain stirs at night, can't help but feed it.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Two Word Movie Review - Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

Here are your two words:

War Movie

This is a good movie.
But it's not your typical Tina Fey comedy.  It's not really a comedy at all.  It's a war movie. 
Based on the book  The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan by Kim Barker, "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot" stars Tina Fey as a 40+ aged broadcast journalist sent to Afghanistan in 2003.  It's based on real people and actual events.

The comedy in this movie isn't set up/punchline humor.  It's naturally occurring humor, and if you go into the movie expecting that, you will like this movie.  If you expect slapstick, laugh-track-worthy jokes, you will be disappointed.

My first words to The Husband as the closing credits started to roll were, "I think this movie was too smart for me."  It could be that it was a little too true for me.
You see, I felt a special bond with Tina Fey's character.  Throughout the movie, I asked myself, "If The Husband didn't exist, and I was this 40+ year old broadcast journalist, what would I do?  In a parallel universe, this could have been me."
This may be why I liked this movie as much as I did.
But The Husband liked it, too.  In fact, he laughed much more often than I did.

I am pretty sure this movie spoke to Ms. Fey in a very special way because the dedication at the end was to someone whose last name was Fey.

To me, the true mark of a good movie is that it makes me want to read the book that it's based on.
First thing I did when we got home from the theater was put myself on my library's waiting list for this book.

Read disclosures here.
Read all the Two Word Reviews.

Monday, April 04, 2016

Garbage Brain

Me:  I should take the garbage out tonight, but I don't want to.  But I also don't want to have to get up early to beat the truck tomorrow either.

He:  I wouldn't worry about it, because One, there's not a lot of garbage in the can this week...

Me:  True.

He:  ...and Two, tomorrow's not garbage day.