Peaches Prattlings

Did you know it’s Groundhog Day? Hopefully when you wake up tomorrow, it will be Wednesday, February 3rd! Fingers crossed for all of us!

Let me back up! Today is Tuesday, February 2, 2021 and it’s Groundhog Day. This is the day that Punxsutawney Phil, the official groundhog in Punxsutawney, PA, comes out of his hole, the temporary home he has in Gobbler’s Knob, to tell us if Winter is here to stay, well, for at least 6 more weeks, and today…Groundhog Day 2021, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow and we will have 6 more weeks of winter folks. Oh joy…

“We have passed the darkness of night but now see hope and morning’s bright light. But now when I turn to see there’s a perfect shadow cast of me. Six more weeks of winter there will be!” club vice president Tom Dunkel read from the chosen scroll.

This event, which is more of a festival and celebration now, has been going on annually since 1887! Can you believe it! Well, more to the point, can you believe that this is the same groundhog that has been making a prediction since the tradition started? Yup, that’s right folks, well, that’s what the “Inner Circle” or Phil’s “Inner Circle”, identifiable by their top hats and tuxedos, want us to believe, isn’t that fabulous!

Whether or not Punxsutawney Phil’s predictions are true or not, it’s still a fun tradition to keep up and behold. This year, in keeping with Covid-19 rules, the ceremony was held virtually, well, not by everyone! Phil was there, along with his inner circle, hey, someone had to verify if Phil saw his shadow and read the proclamation. And…except for the three intimately involved…the guy holding Phil, the guy reading the proclamation, and the guy with the microphone, everyone else had a mask on, no, not Phil, duh!

I’ll be honest, as a kid, I knew about the groundhog and Groundhog Day, the tradition of the groundhog coming out and predicting the 6 more weeks of winter, or not, but I didn’t know it was such a BIG deal until I saw the 1993 movie Groundhog Day, starring Bill Murray, who plays a self-absorbed weatherman who ends up living the same day over and over and over again, well, until he gets it right.

The movie had a great cast, including Andie MacDowell, as his producer and eventual love interest, Chris Elliot is his goofball cameraman, Stephen Tobolowsky an old classmate of Billy Murray’s character and an insurance salesman with two of my favorite lines in the movie “BING!”, I know you have to watch it, and “Watch that first step…it’s a douzy”. Then, there’s Billy Murray’s brother, not movie brother, but actual brother, Brian Doyle Murray, a great character actor, Angela Paton, she’s one of those actors I don’t always remember her name, but I like seeing her. Rick Overton, who plays one of the guys in the car when Phil Connors, Billy Murray’s character drives off a cliff, Michael Shannon, who has a small role and I always forget that it’s him because had such a baby face in the movie, he was playing a teenager or just barely out of his teens and then, Harold Ramis who co-wrote, directed, and had a small role in the film.

The fun part is to watch Bill Murray’s character grow into an actual human being with all the experiences he has. He starts off, when he realizes that he’s stuck, is to do all the things we might think about doing, since he can’t get in trouble, or trouble that lasts past midnight, when the clock or day resets itself. Then he starts to take life a little more seriously, while still enjoying it. The day resets, but he doesn’t, so he has no choice but to grow. On the last day, well, the day that doesn’t reset itself is the day we get to see the new, maybe who he really was all along, just buried, Phil Connors. Who knows.

The hard part is to watch him try over and over to get out of this day and then you sit there wondering ‘just how long was Phil Connors stuck?‘ Harold Ramis said “It takes at least 10 years to get good at anything,” said Ramis, “and allotting for the down time and misguided years he spent, it had to be more like 30 or 40 years.” Just ouch!

Before I leave you…a bit of Groundhog Day movie trivia before I say farewell. The movie takes place in Punxsutawney, PA, but actually, it was filmed in Woodstock, Illinois! But JJ, how do you know that!? Well, first, if you look up the movie, you can find that out, but…I happened to be in Woodstock, Illinois for a project and the people at the office told me that the town square, about two blocks away, was where they filmed the movie! OMG! Of course, I had to take a stroll. How cool is that!

Well, here’s to 6 more weeks of winter and I’m hoping the radio doesn’t wake me up to I Got You Babe by Sonny and Cher. If it does, I’m going back to bed. What would you do?

I am, of course, talking about movie trailers, vs. the trailers you live in, or the trailers you haul stuff on or in. Movie Trailers.

They really can say so much or so little and they can make or break if you are going to see a movie. There are a lot of times I can watch a trailer and know instantly if I am going to like a movie or not. And…I am usually spot on.

There are great trailers that just give you a tease, or a taste, leaves you wanting more, which is great, then there are the trailers that give you practically the entire movie, where’s the fun in that? How about the trailers that give you the best one liners? Or the trailers that give you the best one liners that never actually make it into the movie.

When I was in college, I majored in broadcasting, and one of my dreams was to one day make movie trailers. I thought, what a job that would be, watching movies and determining what would be a great hook, to bring you in and make you want to watch it vs watching a trailer and realizing you just watched a mini movie and what would be the point to go to the theater to see it.

One of the best new trailers I have seen in a long time is for Barb and Star go to Vista Del Mar written by, and starring Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo. They also wrote Bridesmaids and I have to say, if the movie is half as good and funny as Bridesmaids, it will be amazing! I watched the trailer and I didn’t stop laughing, you never actually see their faces, only the tops of their heads, hands, and feet, it’s classic! They are talking about movie trailers, and what if they were in a movie trailer, they wouldn’t give away anything, especially their faces. It really is classic and clever!

There is a second trailer, Barb and Star go to Vista Del Mar: Fashion Trailer, which only has them at the very end, and they are buried in sand, you only see the tops of their heads! It’s hysterical, especially what it represents and pokes fun at.

I cannot wait for February 12th, that’s when the movie comes out and they make a point of it in each trailer to mention the air date, clever. As I said, if this is half as good as Bridesmaids, Kristen Wiig will have made up for the WW84 Cheetah mess. Here’s hoping!

{January 12, 2021}   Do I look like my Bitmoji now?

Ha Ha! I finally got on the Bitmoji bandwagon with everyone else about two or so years ago, I’m not even sure, I know I was still living in Hawai’i. The reason I know that is my Bitmoji has a Hawai’ian flair.

Bitmoji me’s got red hair, just like me. Short red hair, definitely just like me as of last week! Bitmoji me’s got blue lips. I have blue lipstick, and, you might not believe this, but anyone who knows me from middle school knows, I wore blue lipstick. Well, not just blue lipstick, there was purple lipstick, green lipstick, and black lipstick. And sometimes…at the same time. I would divide my lips and put one color per quarter, it was quite colorful. But, back to Bitmoji, blue lipstick.

White bikini-like tank top. I wore tank tops all the time, but I got brave and wore a bikini quite a bit, work with what you’ve got! The skirt, could be a skort, not sure. And for those of you not sure of what a skort is, it’s combination skirt with shorts in it, nice for those of us who might not want to start a fire when our thighs rub together! It’s red with tropical flowers, could be a hibiscus, looks like a Hawai’ian shirt!

Bitmoji me has slippahs like the first pair of Tevas I bought in Hawai’i, one of which Mother Nature STOLE from me! [Just so you know, I haven’t gotten over it yet, I LaLaLaLOVED those slippahs!!!] First, let me ‘splain! A slippah is what is referred to as a flip-flop on the mainland. Sometimes you can include sandals. One of my favorite signs, which we have hanging outside our front door Please remove your slippahs, but don’t take mo bettah ones on da way out! Classic!

Hawaii Style – Signs PLUMERIA-SLIPPAH | Indonesia Export

Even bettah…check out this scene from Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw, when Momma stands up and threatens all her sons wit her slippah! The whole clip is 3:11, but momma gets up at 2:30, SO worth it! I watch that scene over and over again!

So…now you know what my Bitmoji looks like… ME! Do you agree?!

{January 8, 2021}   Yearly Departed

I just watched Yearly Departed. Non-stop laughter. That’s really all I have to say. Come on, you know me, do you think that’s all I have to say? Ha to the Ha!

This was a fabulous watch on Amazon Prime, it’s included with Prime, not sure how much it is if you don’t have an account, but if you do, oh please watch this! The description ‘Comedy special features eulogies for the year 2020 with a line-up of all-women comedians discussing everything from casual sex to beige Band-Aids and everything in between that we’ve “lost” in 2020.’

I’ve seen it advertised and watched the trailer and couldn’t stop laughing through the trailer and I can tell you that the funny parts were not only in the trailer, which is how it happens many times. How can you not laugh when it starts with ‘2020 was a triflin’ ho’! It takes place in a funeral home, opening as if it’s a true funeral, the set up, the costumes, the mourners, the funerary urn with 2020 on it.

The cast was amazing, all female, except for the funeral director, Rick Overton, he’s not credited in the cast and Sterling K. Brown, his job was to lie on the floor and look good. There are a few other cast members not credited, Cathy Chang is one, who works at the funeral parlor and has some great reactions, but I’m still trying to figure out who the rest are!!

The funeral is hosted by Phoebe Robinson, giving a great eulogy and talking to us about what we’ve lost, she also has some great lines between each speaker. She introduces Tiffany Haddish, who eulogizes about Casual Sex, moving and hysterical. Next is Natasha Rothwell, who bid farewell to TV Cops, apologizing to recent theater school workers, who missed their opportunity to be an extra on tv! Then Rachel Brosnahan, who bid farewell to Pants, with a great ending, possibly uncomfortable, to her eulogy! As the ‘dark spirit’ was lifting, Patti Harrison cried over the loss Rich Girl Instagram Influencers, harsh, but awesomely funny and on point.

Natasha Leggero lamented about Having Any More Children, ‘she didn’t have children to teach it, she had a baby to get likes on Instagram, just like everybody else!’ Ziwe Fumudoh, bid farewell to Beige Band Aids. And we finished with Sarah Silverman to Making America Great Again with a bang, ouch!

The dialog was funny and poignant and biting. The reactions were great, there were random people in the funeral parlor at different times, the main cast was static, but everyone else was here and there. There is also a surprise at the end, someone else not credit, but you’ll know who she is. The very end, during this special performance, singing Sarah McLaughlin’s I will Remember You, there is a screen rolling with all the things we have said goodbye to and will remember

Watch the credits to see how they shot the special while definitely keeping socially distant. A lot of greenscreen happening, which leads to interesting reactions, since the actors don’t always know what’s going on, someone has to tell them how to react or what they are seeing so they can figure out what they should do. For this editing, I thought they did a great job, you couldn’t tell, and I definitely look for that.

Overall, I thought this was a great treat and testament to what we went through, are going through and that what we really need, is to laugh.

[Parental Advisory [No this is not parental advisory warning week!]…if you are offended by bad language, you have been advised.]

{December 31, 2020}   The Prom

Another triumph from Ryan Murphy on Netflix. The man has the golden touch if I have ever seen it.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t watched everything he’s done, but from what I’ve seen, he has a knack, an eye for what works and how to make a movie or tv series. The reason I haven’t see everything is that half the topics are too skooky for me, yes I said skooky! Shows like American Horror Story, Ratched, and Nip/Tuck, not my scene, a little too graphic and gory, although I did start watching Scream Queens, not sure if I’ll finish… I loved Glee and I’m loving Pose, which I’m still watching, turned on after watching Paris is Burning, it’s been quite a ride, and still the list that I am looking forward to watching is Feud. I started watching Hollywood, but I was turned off after two episodes. You can call me a prude, but to me, it was like watching a bad porno, everyone was doing everyone and I didn’t feel like there was a definite story line. I know there was, I read the plot and I was excited about the potential, but I was just depressed.

What did like about Hollywood, like most of his movies, tv shows, and the mini-series he creates or produces, are the colors, the vibrancy, the dialog, the possibilities. Along those lines, I have to tell you…I just watched The Prom, and I la la la loved it! The IMDB description says it perfectly to a T! “A troupe of hilariously self-obsessed theater stars swarm into a small conservative Indiana town in support of a high school girl who wants to take her girlfriend to the prom.”

The cast is fabulous. There are two stories that converge into one. The movie opens with a PTA meeting, the president being played by Kerry Washington, at a school in Indiana, where the root of the story begins. A girl, Emma, who is an out lesbian, wants to take her girlfriend, not out, to the prom and the PTA doesn’t think that’s right, so…cancels the prom. Plot one.

Switch to Meryl Streep and James Cordon, two Broadway actors being interviewed right outside the theater of the show they are about to open, Elenore, which is a musical about Elenore Roosevelt. It’s a musical number, apologies, it’s a musical, a movie adaptation of the Broadway Musical The Prom, based on a true story.

Let me back up. Meryl Streep and James Cordon open on Broadway and during the cast party at Sardis the reviews come in and, let’s just say, the critics said nay. Devastated, drowning their sorrows with the bartender, in glides Nicole Kidman, who just quit the show, Chicago, where she’s been in the chorus for about 20 years and had enough. Streep and Cordon realize they need to do something to up their images, so they aren’t seen as the shallow, narcists that they are. Kidman reads something on her twitter feed about Emma and her plight and they realize they need to do something. Basically, not to help someone else for some altruistic reason, but for the good press they can get. You know it will turn around, right? Que music number.

Now we’re at high school, musical number about ‘just breath’ while trying to combat and ignore the bigots around her who blame her for the prom being canceled, while in her corner is the principle, played by Keegan-Michael Key, who happens to have a crush on Meryl Streep’s character, pretty much the only person, besides her grandmother. The plan was to introduce her girlfriend to the world at the prom, dance together and kiss in front of everyone, sounds simple enough. Sure.

When the Broadway stars get to the school, they make a giant entrance and quite an impression, not great for everyone, but they are enthusiastic. They soon find out that the prom is back on, the publicity put a few people on edge. Yeah, the prom is back on. Now what? That was only in the first 30 minutes, you think we’re done? Not a chance!

It’s prom proposal day, shopping with Emma’s new fairy godfather and now, we’re at the gym, she looks fabulous. But what is not fabulous, there is no one in the gym except the principal. It was a cruel joke on Emma and her new friends. Two girls she used to be friends with, until she came out, of course, found out who her girlfriend was and along with the parents, put on a ‘secret’ prom, basically the entire school, except Emma.

Standing in the gym, a song. Come on people, it’s a musical. Emma calls her girlfriend, who isn’t quite ready to stand up to her mother, who happens to be the president of the PTA. And the truth comes out why they came to this town, for publicity, not for Emma. The truth hurts.

Then there are some touching scenes where different characters have to admit things to themselves they don’t want to admit, what they’ve been covering up for years, through acting, what makes them most vulnerable. This includes Alyssa Greene, played by Ariana DeBose, Emma’s girlfriend, who just isn’t ready to come out and Emma takes a stand and says she can’t hide anymore and it’s over. During the sad moments, there is ice cream, friends, and then throw in a great ‘Fosse’ number with Nicole Kidman and Emma, played by Jo Ellen Pellman. Then there is apologizing and groveling for some characters, and some eye opening truths for others, reforming of some bigoted ideas.

Next, Emma decides she is going to do things her way and sings on a live stream on the inter-web and touches so many lives and hearts of people who are just like her. Her new friends band together to give her the prom if her dreams, in the high school gym and the people that show up to help? Her former friends, apologizing, her former girlfriend, apologizing, and the president of the PTA, protesting.

Now it’s time for prom, the lights, the sounds, the flowers, the decoration, it’s pure perfection. The participants? Kids from all across the state who saw Emma’s live stream, people just like her, just different, her girlfriend, and then…her girlfriend’s mom who realizes and tell her daughter that she is more important to her than anything and nothing she does or says will ever change the love she has for her child. Just what we wanted to hear.

What started off as a protest and an anthem, turned into a heartwarming story of courage, friendship, tolerance, acceptance, a belief in yourself, and above all else, love. Isn’t that what it always comes down to, love? The most powerful emotion of all and with it, we can get through almost anything. Oh, and a good dance number thrown in.

Ok, so you might be getting that I enjoyed the movie. I really did. I liked the music, the lyrics, the songs, the dance numbers and when you know it’s going to be a musical, you can handle the cheesy bits, which there were, but they fit in right where they were supposed to.

I laughed, I cried, I give it two thumbs up. And as the old theater joke goes, it was better than Cats.

et cetera