Monday, August 17, 2009

Geriatric Chick Flick

Since returning to the US for a temporary assignment in 2005 (we're headed back overseas in about 3 weeks), my wife and I (and our daughter, when she's at our house) have enjoyed having digital cable TV. It gives us lots of choices and more flexibility than standard TV, though I'm not sure we actually took enough advantage of those benefits enough to justify the cost. Frankly, we ended up watching a rather narrow range of programming. Probably the most watched channel, though, is the Food Network. They have the best reality TV (The Next Food Network Star, Bobby Flay's Throwdown, Chopped -- is Chopped a FN show?) and there's usually nothing offensive. I like the dry humour and the great information of Alton Brown. So, food has become a prime interest in our house -- well, eating food has always been a prime interest.

So, when the movie Julie & Julia began to be promoted, my wife and daughter were certainly interested. OK, I must confess, so was I -- intrigued by the idea of the movie. Saturday, we went to see the movie. I've blogged about that being my first senior citizen discount.

Well, we walk into the theater and I immediately realize that I've paid to see a geriatric chick flick. First of all, I think there were 2 other men in the whole theater and they were slouched down in their seats like they were trying to avoid the possibility that another man would actually see them. (I think all 3 of us temporarily lost our mancards on Saturday. How long until we get them back? Maybe we have to do something ultra-manly like ... well, I'll let your imagination -- PG-rated, of course -- finish that thought.) So, obviously, this is a chick flick of major proportions.

Now remember, I got a Senior Citizen discount to get into the afternoon movie, so I'm not young anymore. But, I tell you, my wife, our daughter, and I were the youngest in the whole place. Hmmm. I'm now wondering if I'm going to like this movie -- I'm thinking I made a bad mistake.

It was weird. The audience actually laughed at the funny, quirky parts of the movie. And, there were parts of the movie that were really funny, but the laughter was unusual -- I think the humour really connected with the female audience. The profanity was totally unnecessary -- why do we (that's a collective we) think that it's so cool to use obscene, profane, vulgar language? It's so totally unnecessary -- and that bothered me. The smoking by Julia and her contemporaries was pretty shocking -- very realistic for the '50's and '60's but after finally being able to enjoy eating in a restaurant without having to inhale cigarette smoke (well, except in Virginia), it was surprising to see.

If you can't stand to watch the Food Network, then you probably won't like the movie, Julie & Julia. But if you like cooking and can ignore or tolerate the profanity, it is a pretty good movie and has some funny segments. Meryl Streep did a remarkable job portraying Julia Childs. She is good!

I've encouraged my wife to adapt the idea -- cook through all the recipes that have accumulated in her recipe card boxes and blog about them. We'll see. She's a great cook so it would be fun for me.

Oh, running -- I intensely dislike running in temperatures above 69°, especially when the humidity is above about 75%. My running has been hard for the past 2 months. I ran 6+ miles this morning and, if the scales at my mother-in-law's were correct, I lost 5.4 pounds during my run.

Run well, y'all,
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