Saturday, January 27, 2018

One Day at a Time, Season 2 Review

Growing up in North Trenton, I didn’t have too many friends. Well, actually, I did have one friend: my television. I spent many hours taking in all kinds of entertainment with that TV. I was glued to everything on MTV, grew to love Tales From the Crypt, and memorized many episodes of Full House while watching that thing, but some of the best times of day were the early afternoons, when sitcoms from years past would play during summer vacation. One of them was One Day at a Time, which ran for nine seasons, from 1975 to 1984. It was created bit sitcom svengali Norman Lear about a divorcee raising two daughters (one of which was Valerie Bertinelli, who was kind of a crush).

At the time, I recognized it for its worth, from the memorable theme song (“This Is It” by Polly Cutter) to its legacy of bringing feminism and real-life parenting to television. It was one of the beauties of a Lear program, and was something I was intrigued about when I’d heard that Netflix was remaking the series to air in January of 2017. The new series was about a Cuban family and featured a divorced mother of two children (this time a boy and a girl), her exiled Cuban mother...and a dude named Schneider (hey, if it ain’t broke). My wife had peeped the first few episodes on Netflix and was enamored, and suggested we watch. While my TV viewing has always gone back to sitcoms, my day job has me watching more series than I can keep up with, meaning that it’s hard to just watch TV to enjoy TV. That said, once we started running through this new iteration of One Day at a Time, which brought in everything from PTSD (the mother, Penelope, is a veteran who’s on anti-depressants) to LGBTQ issues (her eldest child, Elena, comes out as a lesbian during the first season) to the plight of immigrants living in America was heaven.

You see, while some of my favorite shows are about superheroes or fantastical situations, you need television that makes you laugh (and more importantly, think) about the world around you. This new school edition of One Day at a Time did that, and well. And when word hit that season two would be premiering on Netflix on January 26, 2018, I was excited. My regular TV viewing needed this.

All of that said, this second season hits all of the notes of the first, and then some. Justina Machado’s Penelope had a lot to deal with in season one, from her ex-husband coming back and completely shunning their lesbian daughter to trying to find a way to focus on having her own love life. Season two touches on both, with the family having one truly-emotional episode drawing parallels between Elena’s birth and their current-day.

One of the series’ shining stars is Rita Moreno, who at 86 is still a pistol, playing Penelope’s mother Lydia with grace and fire. She’s always around to remind the family of the old ways, but will surprise you with how current some of her feelings about life are. The children, Elena and Victor, are growing as well, with Elena growing up as a woke Latinx in today’s society, while Victor is caring, but also trying to work his charm into a cushy life.

I’d love to sit here and spoil this series for you; there are some awesome standalone episodes, with others that will hit you all in your feels. It’s a quality binge, with hope for a season three (we’re waiting on you, Netflix). From the Gloria Estefan-remake of “This Is It” to this glorious cast reimagining a quality sitcom series, One Day at a Time’s second season is one you shouldn’t miss. And now, I have a friend (my wife) and my son to watch the show with as an adult, allowing us to have discussions about what’s really real in today’s world, from LGBTQ issues to what it means to be a good person. We’re walking through it, together, one day at a time.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Solar Eclipse of the Heart 2017

At the last minute, I decided to take a half day off from work to spend the afternoon of the solar eclipse with my children.  My son, Jayden, especially has never seen any eclipse (he's just 10 yrs old) at all and he's really into science.  So I wanted to make sure he sees this and does it safely.  We're having a picnic in our own yard with our home made viewing boxes and some themed music.  

The food is always the fun part for me and this was just something so I could toss it together before the big event starts.  The goal was quick and cheap.  (Although isn't that always the goal?)  We're having sandwiches I'll be cutting with a star shaped cookie cutter, Sunkist sodas, cupcakes with moons and suns on them and rocket pop ice pops.  Easy peasy and cheap.  There weren't many options even on Pinterest and they were just repeats of what I thought of.......which means none of us really gave this any thought.  😏

The viewing boxes were very simple.  I just did a quick search on YouTube and found this one that was short, sweet and to the point.  It took about 30 minutes to make all four boxes and drink two glasses of terrible red wine.  Sadly, I drank all the wine but here's the video to make your own boxes as opposed to being permanently blinded during the eclipse. 

Last but not least is the playlist.  I went onto my Facebook page and asked friends to recommend songs for this playlist.  These are their choices, so don't kill the messenger.  Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler had to be first!!!  And because I'm corny, there are 17 songs since this is 2017.  (Fucking genius or what?)

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Looking For a Spoon

I was spending the weekend at a friend’s house.  I guess I was about 12 or so?  We had went to bed a little late watching TV and being silly.  I woke up and realized the house was quiet.  You know how it’s awkward to go through someone’s house even after her parents have said to feel free to get whatever you need…...still feels like an intrusion.  

So I was laying in bed and waiting for my friend to wake up.  She was still snoring. After about 30 minutes or so, I needed to pee really bad and I was hungry.  So headed for the bathroom……….and then immediately for the kitchen.  There was cereal!  Yay!  And it was one of the brands my mom thought was too expensive!  Double Yay!  I found a bowl, got the milk and added it to the cereal.  Then I went to get a spoon.  


Right there in the drawer was something that caught me completely off guard.  There were spoons, knives, forks all in the drawer.  There were no short straws.  I immediately turned around and looked at the kitchen table.  No mirrors.  It took some time.  I stood there looking around and felt like my mind was blank.  And then it all started crashing in on my brain and heart. It was my first and only “ah ha” moment.  My house wasn’t normal. My house was fucked up. Not my family.


Later that day, I went home and looked around.  I went right to the kitchen and there was the mirror on the table.  Next to them were those old film bottles that look like pill bottles? My parents used those for weed, weed seeds, weed stems, hash, cocaine, etc. I walked over to the silverware drawer…...opened it…..yup…..short cut up straws.  I never said anything to my parents that day.  But my view of them became more focused.  I can see now that it was also the first time I’d judged my parents on the kind of parents they were toward us.  

It wasn’t until years later when I had children of my own that I brought it up to my mother.  In my heart, I knew I was hoping for an apology but I knew that’s not the type of people they are.  Like a lot of people with a troubled past, it’s easier to act like it didn’t happen or wasn’t a big deal than to apologize.  It’s got to be difficult to sit in front of your children and acknowledge - hey I fucked up your childhood and I’m sorry.  

My mom.  Mmm Mmm Mmm.  She’s not an easy person and her heart is closed (I believe out of guilt she won’t face).  So I asked her about it.  I didn’t tell her about my moment because I didn’t want her to feel compared to other parents.  I just wanted to see if she looked at that time as a mistake.  Guess what?  She didn’t say anything other than an offhanded “so what?” remark.  My mom.  

People wonder how I could have distanced myself from my family.  If they knew my family, they’d wonder why I didn’t do it much sooner.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Make-Up - For The Getting Old Face

Before I go off into a tangent of complaints regarding my body, my skin, my weight, my my my my my..............

Let's talk make-up.  I'm cheap.  I hate to spend money on make-up if at all possible.  I've been buy make-up for the last few years from e.l.f.; I think I'm finally accepting that my skin is just changing too much and I need to adjust my thinking and buying.  It's not just the old lady acne, it's also the texture just seems different.

I'll be researching some products and trying them out.  God (if there is one) help me! But I'm going for the goal of not really looking younger........I just want to look awake, fresh and maybe pretty.  Cross your fingers kiddos.  Money will be spent.  Tears will be shed over each product that doesn't work.  LOL.

For now, I'm going to try some more ELF products and see how it goes!

Mineral Infused Face Primer
Flawless Finish Foundation
Perfect Finish HD Powder

And from Amazon with my Prime account.....

Maybelline New York Superstay 14 hour Lipstick, Please Stay Plum
Maybelline New York Superstay 24, 2-step Lipcolor, Very Cranberry 100

I tend to go for reds and dark reds on my lips.  I have very thin white people pail lip syndrome.  No!  Don't pity me.....I found a therapy group!  Ok, I'll update when everything gets here and I get a chance to try it all on.

#makeup #oldladyacne #45yearsold #FountainOfYouth

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Bill Cosby - Rapist? Maybe. Cheater? For Sure!

Comedian Bill Cosby has always been a dynamic force in the entertainment business.  He’s given a voice to the black community and bridged many gaps that have brought people together through laughter and intellectual thought.  He’s a genius.  I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have watched Bill Cosby’s Himself.  That part about the trip to the dentist…..LOL.  And his wife pulling his lip over his head?  OMG I nearly cried from laughing so hard.  

He’s launched the careers of so many with his dedication.  He’s done the some for education; being a strong advocate for learning just for the sake of learning.  In his career, he’s reached that level that few stars will ever obtain.  

In his personal life, he’s been dogged by rumors.  Rumors that he has harmed, embarrassed, hurt, destroyed and suffocated.  No, I’m not talking about those women.  I’m talking about his wife….and to an extension…..his daughters.  

Whether or not you agree that these allegations of rape are true or lies is not up for debate at this moment.  As a wife and mother, I wonder about the awful hurt all these infidelities and how they have impacted his family.  His wife has noted in the past that she’s aware of his cheating.  That means the daughters are at least now aware of it also.  So here’s the questions I wonder.  How long have they known?  All of them?  How has it affected their relationship with Bill?  How has it affected the daughters’ relationships with their mother?  

Camille always strikes me as an intelligent, strong, resilient woman who can handle anything.  A true matriarch in her family.  Can you imagine living with and loving someone who has undermined your entire 50 year relationship without any true sense of guilt?  Where is the education of Mr. Cosby?  Has he ever learned that if you hurt someone, you don’t continue to do it?  Has he ever learned that your children will repeat your behavior?  Has he ever learned that to hurt those you claim to love the most and to do it repeatedly, makes you the worst father and husband?  

For the record, I do still watch The Cosby Show via Amazon Prime.  It was a brilliant show.  However, I would never want to have the alleged victims to be flipping through their TV and see their rapist.  I don’t think it needs to be back on TV at all.  

I wonder what Cliff Huxtable would have thought of Bill Cosby.  

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Donald Trump - Any Ideas Behind The Titles?

So I was reading this article on Donald Trump (no worries....I was reading it while in the bathroom......aka the only room worthy of Trump articles) and found this really interesting.  I've not really heard any actual plans with details from him as a candidate.  I've heard name calling.  I've heard titles to ideas.  I've heard more name calling.  I've heard rhetoric.  I actually did go searching a bit for how he intends to do these things.  But I found myself always finding his speeches full of ego and empty bullshit.

I don't agree with Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders or Ted Cruz or anyone else on everything but at least I know where they are coming from (sort of).  Why would you want someone to lead you into hatred?  Quite honestly, I'm still stuck on how he intends to make Mexico pay for a wall they didn't ask for........does he mean they will fund it or that he would put some sort of sanctions against them?  Like just how do you get your neighbor to pay for the new fence you want in your backyard?

Trump is seriously scary.  He is an example of all the things I try to teach my son NOT to do in this life.  Don't call people names.  Don't talk bad about people unless you understand where they are coming from.  Don't say "all" people because you've never met them all.  Be nice, always.  Even when you don't like someone, be respectful of them as a human being.  Different ideas are different, not wrong or stupid.  If you make a statement, have facts to back it up so it makes sense to everyone.  Don't scare people unnecessarily.  

Friday, July 31, 2015

Inside My Head

Why?  Why can't I tell people no?  And why can't I tell people no without the guilt?  Am I not allowed to say no?  Am I not allowed to just do what I want and maybe I just don't want to do what you're asking?  Who said I'm not allowed to say no?  Is it just part of me?  Is it pressure from peers?  Why am I filling this whole paragraph with questions?  Am I feeling pressured to keep the questions going?  Why?

I've given 5 years of constant "yes" but I know there's no one available right now that would be able to give the hours I give.  Do I stay until that person comes along?  Do I say hey that's not my problem?  Do I turn my back on my community?  Do I turn my back on my own words to others about giving back?  Why do I keep asking myself these questions?  Why does the question mark look like this?  Does it have that hook because a question keeps you hanging by a hook until you get the answer?

This is just little sample on how my brain talks to me all day.  Sorry for the headache.


I've had a fat problem (problem with being fat?) for years now.  I research.  I plan.  I organize.  I plot. But I never just do it.  Nike really had the whole thing figured out didn't they?  I realized that in my researching and planning and organizing and plotting.........I would find excuses in why I personally wouldn't be able to do this journey.  I wasn't really looking for a way to do it....I was looking for ways to get out of it.

I'm still fat and still not doing anything to lose weight.  I only had this discovery last night. But I need to go grocery shopping.  So I decided to try to do it different.  I have all the recipes I need.  So now instead of going to the grocery store and grabbing stuff I don't need and shouldn't have, I'm going to use those healthy recipes today to do my shopping online.  Everything will be getting delivered tonight or tomorrow morning so I won't be able to have time to organize my way out of it.  LOL.

I'm going for a walk today, already got my clothes out and SNEAKERS.  I'm talking to my boss today.  I'm gonna go for a lunch time stroll.  I don't know if the 'steps' will make any dent on my pedometer but at least it will get me away from my desk and break up the day.  My mind is all over the place right now in how to break my own cycle of not doing shit.  And on how to get my husband to help me do it.

Stay tuned.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

210 Pounds

Today I ate, I munched, I snacked.  And that was only this morning.  Well, I just five minutes ago decided to get myself on my scale.  I knew I would still be right about 195 lbs.  Really?  It's crazy that I'm in denial 24/7 about my weight and I not struggle to carry my fat ass around all day?

I mean, this is just ridiculous.  I know I have a tendency to avoid things that I know have to get done until the last moment.  But what's the last moment when it comes to my health?  Death?

I'm so involved with my community and my job.  But it's my family that gives me the most joy.  And I want to be here with them always.  So before I started to type this, I took all the snacks from my bedroom and I'm taking them downstairs.  No more night time or bedroom eating or drinking.....unless it's water.  And I'm putting alarms reminders on my phone......hopefully this will help.

Tomorrow I'm going to not.  Not over eat.  Not eat according to my mood.  I'm going to eat according to my plan.  My Fitness Pal - here I come baby!!!!  No more Facebook groups where none of us are really helping each other.

Tomorrow I will do my Zumba, eat breakfast and at least start my day right.  I'll be concentrating on these couple of goals first.  I can't wait to see where I end up.

1st Goal - 200 lbs by the end of April.  That's 10 lbs.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

My Favorite Things About Being Human

I just saw a post on Facebook by someone who doesn't like to do much more than complain.  The only thing that makes her happier than complaining is to have people agree with her complaints.  She complains about people being different from her.  She complains about people that act just like her.  It got me to thinking about the things I have learned to appreciate about people.

There are so many types of people around me that I know I'm very lucky to have so much diversity in my life.  My neighborhood when I was a kid had a mix of Hungarian, Polish, Scottish, Irish, Italian and just plain white.  My elementary school was the same.....just a handful of non-white kids. Junior high was waaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy different.  Lots Puerto Ricans and African Americans.  It was a mini melting pot.  High school was wonderful, Asians, Jamaicans, folks from South American countries, Haitians, Chinese.  And I was never the type of person to only be friends with any one type of person.

All of that was much different than my home life.  My father is Puerto Rican, my mom is Irish and Polish.  But they were divorced and I was really growing up in a white household.  My parents (mom and step-dad) didn't want me to really be friends with non-whites.....they didn't mind me associating but I always felt the criticism from them with being actual friends with these kids.  I know the fact that I dated those boys was a HUGELY insulting thing for my parents.

Not saying I didn't like who I was or other white people, but they were the norm for me my entire childhood.  I wanted to meet and experience things, places, food and people that weren't like me.  I still do this now.  I love to watch how even with vastly different cultures and backgrounds, we all usually wind up in the same place doing the same stuff.

Example for me is opera music.  I hated it as a kid.  It was not in English, I couldn't get with the instruments being played.  And those crazy costumes....LOL.  Nope, not for me.  Then someone told me not to worry about the music itself.  To close my eyes and concentrate on feelings opera would let me experience.  And sure enough they were right.  I closed my eyes, I didn't understand a word I heard.  But I cried.  I felt sorrow.  I felt anguish.  I felt elated.  I felt like flying.  I still don't know much about opera, but when I do listen to eyes are always closed.

I had a friend that I knew was African American.  Nope....LOL.  I went to her house when I was about 14 years old.  And she spoke Jamaican (Patwa?) with her family and I'm glad my eyes didn't fall out.  She's Jamaican, but without the thick accent I'd assumed a person from Jamaica would have, I didn't catch on.  I had another friend that was Vietnamese.  The first time I was invited for dinner I was so excited.  I practiced using chopsticks so I would not look like an idiot.  I got there and found out we were having spaghetti and meatballs.  Turns out they didn't even own any chopsticks.  See?  Never assume.

I guess the big lessons I've learned are as follows.........

Don't assume
Be prepared for differences
Be prepared for no differences
Enjoy everything when the opportunity arises
And most of all..........share it back and forth

Things That Irk My Nerves ~ Part 1

I'm having that sort of day when I just need to vent about stupid people.  If ignorance is bliss, that would explain so much.

  • people that are mean to animals for fun.  
  • lateness - not as in tardy, but people that catch on to shit after it's over
  • postings - why do you think I'd believe your relationship with someone started over a year ago when you've had me meeting and speaking to various new boyfriends between then and now?  making it a significant event on Facebook doesn't zap the past out of the mind.  
  • unanswered emails - it's rude.  it's like electronically ignoring my request to help you do your job.
  • ego - I have one, too.  But the different between you and I is that I'm aware of mine.  I do think I'm the shit when I make achievements.  You make no achievements so that just makes you shit instead of The Shit.  
  • you don't have to do what I'm asking you to do, but you should do what you said you would do.  
  • don't stop in the middle if you're not going to get to the end ever. finish what you started or just don't start it. 
AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH yes!!!!  Ok, I feel a bit better.  

One Day at a Time, Season 2 Review

Growing up in North Trenton, I didn’t have too many friends. Well, actually, I did have one friend: my television. I spent many hours tak...