Posted by missjunebug on April 29, 2009
Okay, so it's not Christmas. It's the only Rat Pack item mjb owns! Photo by mjb2009
Five for five great performances last night on American Idol 8. And a few surprises like Master Cowell’s “Brilliant” comment for Matt’s My Funny Valentine, a tough song, a big song, but missjunebug must admit, he pulled it off. Her favs of the night, Adam and Danny, will no doubt top the top two. Look for these two gifted and very, very different singers in the final smackdown to rule as the new American Idol. That said, she thought Kris and Allison were awesome. Without doubt, this is the most talented final five American Idol has ever seen.
Posted by missjunebug on April 27, 2009
Yes, missjunebug knows her title is not perfectly grammatical; however, she enjoys the lovely effect of rhyme and assonance enough to cast adverbial “ly” worries to the proverbial winds. Now to the subject matter at hand: missjunebug’s favorite television show, Friday Night Lights. There are so many great things about this show that still struggles to find enough audience share despite mass critical acclaim. Here are just a few:
1. It takes place in Texas and is actually filmed there. mjb has made the rounds as a background actor, and she knows how many ways Hollywood makes a location look like the real place when, of course, it ain’t (TexasSpeak). The mythical town of Dillon is situated in the mythic Texas landscape of flat open fields and grazing cattle and tumble-down fences and two-lane blacktop roads that stretch into the forever. For real.
2. It has a convincing ensemble of really talented actors who are not phoning it in every week. They are really acting! What a concept! And the semi-shaky camera work (very technical television term) and amazing close ups and partial shot close ups convince mjb that she’s right in the room with them, a little bug on the wall.
3. Fans of Friday Night Lights knew mjb would get to this one sooner or later. She judiciously decided to place it in the middle of the list so as not to call too much attention to it. Two words: TIM RIGGINS!
4. Tim Riggins!
5. Tim Riggins!
6. Tim Riggins!
Okay, okay you get the idea. mjb likes Tim Riggins and the actor who plays him, Taylor Kitsch. Still, she hasn’t gone as far as some fans. Take, for instance, the fan club on Facebook: I Watch Friday Night lights Just to look at Taylor Kitsch (Tim Riggins)
missjunebug watches the show for many, many reasons, not just to look at Tim/Taylor. Refer back to #1 and #2.
mjbTip: Watch Friday Night Lights when you get a chance. It’s so not just about football. It’s about life, love, loss, winning and losing and livin’ large in the great state of Texas. Sweet as a big ole glass of Texas iced tea and just as refreshing!
Posted by missjunebug on April 26, 2009
missjunebug dwarfed by Preposterous Palomar! Photo by mjb2009
missjunebug doesn’t know much about all things astronomical but Mr.JB certainly does. That said, if it hadn’t been for missjunebug’s thorough investigation of all the helpful Temecula, CA hotel materials, neither she nor Mr.JB would have known that a little more than 30 minutes from their hotel front door (down the I-15 and over on the 76 and up, up, up). stood the most preposterous 200-inch telescope either of them had ever seen.Â Â Seriously, it was an awesome white ginormous round thing that dwarfed anyone near it. If you don’t believe missjunebug, just take a close look at the picture. Those are people, people! Albeit very tiny ones when stacked up next to the prodigious housing protecting the Hale telescope.
missjunebug must forego doing any techno-speak about all the great things this telescope does because, frankly, she doesn’t understand much of it, but she’s smart enough to be in total awe of the many profound discoveries made there. The cool little interactive museum shows a bunch of them. If you can’t make a trip yourself, missjunebug urges you to check it out for yourself at the very informative website hosted by the super-smart people at Cal Tech: www.astro.caltech.edu/palomar.
Here are just a few tidbits: The first viewing from the 200-inch Hale telescope began way back in 1949 and the man, she means THE MAN Mr. George Hale, a solar astronomer who secured funding from the Rockefeller Foundation never got to see it in operation. Sad, but true. At least they named it after him! Another interesting factoid, the temperature inside the housing for the telescope must remain at nighttime temperatures all the time so the telescope is ever ready for use, no expansion or contraction due to temperature changes. Smart times ten, but cold times twenty. When missjunebug and Mr.JB visited, the temperature was about 44Â° in Southern California in May!!Â Oh yeah, one more thing: It is HUGE.
mjbTip: See this astronomical wonder machine yourself when you’re in SoCal! And bring a warm jacket!
Too Big To Capture All Of! Photo by mjb2009
Nifty Old-School Graphic to Show How the Hale Works Photo by mjb2009
All Hail Hale! Photo by mjb2009
Posted by missjunebug on April 23, 2009
missjunebug's Nice Vice Photo by mjb2009
missjunebug has one remaining vice and you’re looking at it. Yes, that’s right. Coca-Cola. She’s pretty much given up all the other bad stuff: the white flour, the white rice, the white sugar, the white whatever but she cannot part with her 12-ounce glass of caramel-color, phosphoric acid, high-fructose corn syrup with natural flavorings.
It’s not just the sweet; it’s the sere at the back of the throat that she cannot live without. She knows all the evils of the corn industry and their not-so-subtle infiltration into millions of products with their ubiquitous liquid-evil syrup. She also realizes there should probably be an addiction warning label on the side of the can, but even if the FDA or the EPA required one, she’d ignore it and guzzle like her life depended on it because it does.
Coke in the bottle, Coke in the can, all well and good. But for missjunebug there is nothing, she means nothing better than a fountain Coke from the neighborhood 7-11 or the local Circle K or the old-school diner. The ratio of sweet syrup to carbonated soda freshly configured in the soda dispensing machine is a flavor blast unsurpassed by any other beverage. Yes, she also drinks and enjoys her tap water filtered and chilled through her fab fridge and her Horizon Organic 0% Fat-Free milk. Is this contradictory? Maybe.
Is Coca-Cola still the pause that refreshes missjunebug? Absolutely! And don’t you even dare mention the P word.
mjb?: What’s your nice vice?
Posted by missjunebug on April 22, 2009
missjunebug usually only does one post on American Idol 8 per week to evaluate the song performances of the remaining contestants. But she simply could not let pass without comment tonight’s results show. Showcasing the old school disco performers was way,way,way wrong.
missjunebug simply cannot emphasize this enough. What must the young contestantsÂ have been thinking while sitting there watching these past-their-prime singers? missjunebug is pretty sure they were making promises to themselves that if they ever got a recording career to never, never, never come on American Idol after their star (and talent) had faded.
missjunebug experienced an extreme visceral reaction to these never-should-have-been-done performances. Such things disturb the smooth continuity of a time-ordered universe, the natural order of the all-good-things-must-come-to-an-end axiom. An industry driven by the imperative of youth requires that finished talent fade away quietly along with their closed eras. American Idol does itself no favors with a spooky pseudo-resurrection of the living dead. That’s not healthy for anybody.
And yes, missjunebug is sorry to see Anoop Dog and Lil Rounds go but agrees wholeheartedly that go they should. She thinks that they knew it, too. But she could hardly pay attention to that because she was so traumatized watching those sad disco stars who had flamed out long ago.
Posted by missjunebug on April 21, 2009
If mjb Can't Have You For American Idol, She Don't Want Nobody, Baby
missjunebug thoroughly enjoyed the blast to the disco past on American Idol 8 tonight! Lil Rounds fired up the crowds with I’m Every Woman by Chaka Kahn but the judges ho-hummed her. Kara DioGuardi got it right (again) when she said that Lil Rounds has been just about every woman in the course of the competition. Just not her own woman. Surprisingly, Kris Allen sang Donna Summer‘s She Works Hard for the Money in a guitar-enhanced Santanaesque interpretation. Definitely not your dad’s disco, but cool nonetheless. He even embraced Simon Cowell’s wardrobe style–minimalist minus.
Danny Gokey‘s Earth, Wind, and Fire’s September, took missjunebug back, way back. Nothing new or unique here but he still has fine, listenable pipes. Things picked up as he went along, and he did himself a solid by the end of it but it might not be enough.Â Allison Iraheta, her shiny, sequined self, owned Donna Summer’s Hot Stuff. She is one musical old soul in funked-out wardrobe who is still a contender.
Now for the performance all America must by now be waiting for each week: Adam Lambert. First, he looked gorgeous times ten. Second, If I Can’t Have You from Saturday Night Fever has never been sung with such raw emotion. Ever.Â All four judges were appropriately blown away and so was missjunebug. See you in the finals, Adam. No doubt.
Matt Girard and Anoop Desai provided the denouement. missjunebug feels bad that these two pretty decent singers had to follow Adam but oh well. Matt Girard did one of mjb’s fav BeeGees songs Staying Alive with some serious disco energy but it felt a bit forced at times for missjunebug.Â Anoop looked preppie pretty in disco pink and silver and did a pretty convincing interpretation of Dim All the Lights. missjunebug liked it pretty well. That said, she predicts trouble for Anoop in the results show.
missjunebug had a ball watching these Magnificent 7 Idol 8 singers doing their version of disco classics. But she’s sure the spinning disco ball is shining all its silvery light on Adam Lambert, the next American Idol.
Posted by missjunebug on April 20, 2009
missjunebug has a confession to make. Up until two years ago, she would have considered herself only a cat person. She loved cats and their quirky little personalities, melodic meows, soft pet-able furry parts, and little cat antics. She was the contented owner of two cuties, one a calico and the other a gray and white domestic shorthair, both pound rescue kitties happy to be adopted into a loving family. missjunebug loves her cats still, but she finds herself growing very, very disenchanted with the litter box. Which brings her to her fab dog Spoon, an Australian Labradoodle who has no use for a litter box because (duh) she’s a dog and the whole outside world is her litter box.
The key word in that last sentence being outside. A quick once-a-week poop patrol takes care of Spoon’s tootsie roll leavings in the yard, no muss, no fuss. Where as with the litter box, there is that ugly chore of scooping and scraping and sacking and sweeping that faces missjunebug every evening before she goes to bed.
Words cannot begin to describe how much missjunebug has grown to hate (yes, she’s aware this is a very strong word) the litter box with all her little bug heart. Some nights she feels like she needs a sandblaster to clean the box instead of the ineffectual blue plastic scooper she currently uses. To say it is inadequate to the task of cleaning a two-cat litter box is an understatement of epic proportions.
missjunebug is very sad about all this harshing of her mellow because she used to think that cats were so easy to take care of.
Until she got a dog, that is.
Posted by missjunebug on April 19, 2009
Make no mistake, missjunebug loves being a parent. She is the proud mother of ElderJB and TinyJB, two wonderful sons. She put in her time as chief bottlewasher, laundress, chef, personal shopper, holiday planner, school volunteer, Sunday School helper, homework supervisor, chauffeur, party planner, scout mom, soccer mom, well you get the idea. missjunebug is sure her readers are familiar with such a list. Some days she no doubt looked as harried and haggard as the poor woman (bless her heart) in the photograph entitled Migrant Mother, except missjunebug mostly stayed in the one place .
But here’s the thing: Just when these two young men have come fully into their own, to stand alone in the world on their own, poor missjunebug seems to see less and less of them. I mean, how fair is that? These two boys are at the peak of their interesting-ness to her and yet she is relegated to a few puny visits a year because they are living their lives as independent agents in the wider world, especially in the case of ElderJB who resides abroad. And who knows what exotic locale TinyJB will end up in.
If missjunebug sounds bitter, believe her when she says she is not. She has just hit the wall of the Paradox of Parenting. She has no regrets for her children’s independence. She celebrates it. She loves her children with her whole heart and is delighted that they are making their way in the world. She just misses them like no other.
mjbTip1: Enjoy it all, for it is fleeting!
mjbTip2: No parent is truly prepared for the Paradox of Parenting.
Posted by missjunebug on April 18, 2009
missjunebug has learned a few things about living. Like sometimes it feels like it’s mostly maintenance that takes up an inordinate amount of her time. Take laundry for instance. It chases missjunebug around the house. By that she means that as soon as she thinks she’s done, there’s already the clothes she and Mr.JB are wearing that are conspiring to make another load to wash and dry and fold and put away.
She tries with all her little bug heart to make friends with this particular chore. She has very good intentions every time she starts the laundry process, usually on Mondays. It’s pretty easy for her to get the laundry to the machine, put it in, add the detergent, and press the right buttons. She’s semi-successful with transferring the laundry to the dryer. Sadly, she’s never successful pulling the clothes out of the dryer before they wrinkle or finishing fully by getting the laundry into the actual drawers it belongs in.
The corollary to this is that missjunebug occasionally must dress herself in the laundry room which frankly she finds somewhat pathetic but not all that inconvenient. She also owes a deep debt of gratitude to the makers of Wrinkle Release which she buys by the case at Target. mjb is not exaggerating here.
It is ever the “finishing fully” mantra she read about in one of her kagillion Get-Organized! books that eludes her. She can make friends with the chore, enjoy the zen of folding the 105 pieces from the whites load, and happily breathe in the fresh scent of clothes washed in Gain. But getting them to their end destination…impossible.
She is comforted by the fact that she will always have another chance to achieve laundry nirvana with the next load or the next or the next.
Posted by missjunebug on April 17, 2009
What a palette! Photo by mjb2009
A few days ago missjunebug had the pleasure of a quick trip out of town where she made good use of her camera while she was doing a lot of window shopping and a little real shopping. The storefront displays and a few of the store interiors really captured her imagination.
Sometimes mjb finds art all around her if she just takes the time to look. In yesterday’s post missjunebug admitted her gratitude for costume as well as real jewelry (sounds kind of like an addiction when she puts it that way!), but she was probably just remembering the fab displays of jewelry she saw in the funky desert town she visited. Take a look at her photographs and see if you see art in the everyday. Then take a look around you. missjunebug will bet her jewelry collection that you, too, will see art everywhere!
Rainbowesque! Photo by mjb2009
Old School Gems Make Maximum Art! Photo by mjb2009
Look closely! One of these art objects is not like the others! Photo by mjb2009