Last Chance Double Feature

August 29, 2008


THIS weekend is actually the last chance, but since I’m not planning to pay to sit through Clone Wars, LAST weekend was my last chance. Then it’s closed for the season.

What? Yeah, I don’t know why. They could at least wait until the end of summer. But then they would have to compete (only on Friday nights) with the only other thing to do around here starting this weekend – High School Football. I attended a lifetime of football games while I was in our High School Marching Band. Me=band geek.

This week’s picture isn’t much better than last time, but I did at least get a car for reference. Not a great size reference since the car is halfway between me and the screen. Actually it’s probably closer to me than halfway, but I don’t carry my measuring tape with me.

(click photo to view largeness)

It was really dark so I lightened it out more than normal. This perspective doesn’t really make it seem so impressive.

This (last) weekend’s double feature was Mamma Mia/Swing Vote.

This is not a review but let me just say that Mamma Mia was probably the most fun movie I’ve seen in a long time. I mean, it’s not going to win any of the big Oscars, or, you know, any of the Oscars, but it’s a nice, fun, cute, chick flicky, summer movie. And it helps if you like ABBA. I went out and bought the 2 CD + 1 DVD ABBA “Gold” Greatest Hits (59 tracks!). Where “went out and bought” actually means “sitting at my computer and ordering”. Because, seriously, Tiny Town has no place to buy music. And I know I could have downloaded it, but I’d rather have an actual CD. I’m old-fashioned like that.

I’ve been trying to find a pair of the silver thigh-high platform boots that Christine Baranski’s character wears. I can’t even find a picture of them. So then I started looking for just a pair of thigh-high boots that I like. Why? I don’t know. I have nowhere to wear them. I suppose I could wear them around the house. But that seems a little creepy. Right? I did however find a pair of knee-high platform boots that I’m pretty sure I’m going to make mine. Why? I don’t know. But I’m sure I will have a better chance of finding a place to wear them. Maybe. I don’t usually spend this much time deciding on a pair of shoes. I’ve only ever returned 1 pair of shoes, out of hundreds several that I’ve bought. I even have a deal where I only have to pay the $11 shipping charge. Only $11 total. Unfortunately, I didn’t have to sleep with anyone to get the deal.

My biggest problem (ha! how nice would it be if this was really a biggest problem) is deciding which color – white matte (too high school flag/rifle corps), white patent (too go go), pink patent (really, um, no & the laces are a different shade of pink so yuck), red patent (red is completely not my color, but with shoes it wouldn’t matter as much), black matte (I have 2 other pair of black matte boots), which leaves black patent. That’s probably the ideal choice. And now after a week I’ve finally talked myself into it. Thanks! You’ve really helped.

Now for Swing Vote. It was an OK to good movie. I think. I did an online focus group for this movie several months ago, so I’ve been waiting for it. (This is probably a spoiler, so be warned) I have issue with Kevin Costner’s character. Or his character’s lack of character. Yeah, I know it’s a movie. Yeah, it works out fine in the end (and I really did like the way it ended). And I NEVER do this, I’m sure there’s some kind of psychological reason for this. His character not only pissed me off, but completely disgusted me as well. And I’m pretty difficult to disgust! When your (12 year-old, though I thought she was younger) kid has to fix your (her parent’s) meals, get you (the parent) dressed, get you (the parent) up in time for your work and her school, drive you (the parent) home because you are passed out drunk, and on and on. Well, that’s just fucking pathetic. The tagline is “One ordinary guy is giving the candidates a reason to run.” If he is what’s considered an ordinary guy, we all ought to run. I guess this means that I had better taste in men than I thought! And that really is pathetic.

It’s just a movie, a summer movie, not a deep-philosophical-conversation-worthy movie.


Now for more shallow-ness

Drive-in Birkenstocks!

 (you don’t want this larger)

3 trips to the drive-in this summer, 3 time wearing these Birkenstocks.

Please ignore my scars, I try to. Oh, and the flash glare. Just block that out of your mind.


(17 + 23) x 3 = 70 + Bonus

August 22, 2008


70 years (and a few days) ago, there was a young woman celebrating her 17th birthday. And how did she celebrate her birthday? She got married! This young woman had been courted by a slightly older man for about 5 months in a somewhat long distance relationship (they lived 30 miles apart, which was pretty close to long distance back then). And on August 17, 1938, this young woman and her 23 year-old beau were married for the 1st time. They weren’t married in a church. Why? I don’t know. What I do know is that they were married in the minister’s home, and he was pretty darn nervous because it was the first wedding he had ever performed. (The minister was nervous, but I’m sure the young man was, too, though he’d probably not admit it.)

50 years later, she and her slightly older man were married again. In a church this time, with 3 of their 4 children present, as well as several of their grandchildren, and assorted friends and others.

70 years after their 1st wedding, though somewhat older, they were married for the 3rd time. And again in a church (though not in the same church as 20 years prior because they had recently left the church in which they had been members for almost 70 years to follow their dear minister after he was rudely ousted in a very un-Christian-like manner from said church. But I digress). They were surrounded by 2 of their children, 5 grandchildren, 5 great-grandchildren, assorted spouses/boyfriends/SOs, and members and guests of the (new) church. Their wedding was performed by the dear minister (who I can honestly say is one of the most decent people, and ministers, I’ve ever known – if I went to church I would go to his, even though it’s an hour away over some typically crappy WV roads) of whom they had grown so fond. He is so equally fond of them that he had some trouble getting through the ceremony.


The young woman and her man

When the, formerly young, man was asked why he decided to marry his bride he claimed, “Well I’d been walking to her house every day for about 5 months, and it was a pretty long walk. I thought ‘That’s enough of that, it’s time to bring her home.'” How’s that for romance?


the mistress of elusion


This is the clearest, and closest, photo of me from the day. As far as I know. Although my propensity for avoiding pictures (begin taken of me) is legendary, so I wouldn’t be surprised if there is another one that has been hidden from me. They can bite me.


**I didn’t take these photos, but I tried to my best editing them.

***Not that my photog skills are immeasurably better.

The Big Picture

August 15, 2008

For your viewing pleasure.

 drive-in 08/08/08

Actually it was for mine.

I had hoped that I could have a car in there as a size reference. Lucky me, it was very dead last Friday night. With an X-Files/The Happening double feature, there wasn’t a whole lot of interest in this area. Their loss.

You can see a slide and swing set at the bottom of the photo to help a little with the size (click to go to Flickr for a larger view). Yes, it’s very dark. Next weekend I’m hoping to take more pictures, and not wait until it’s dark, and not take it through my car windshield. I was going to lighten it but I liked the little bit of sunset you can see in the upper right corner (click to see it uncropped and larger at Flickr).

You can also see the speaker poles scattered throughout the bottom. Some of which actually have a speaker attached, though I don’t think any still have 2 attached. They do work, or at least the one in my spot works, but I still use the car radio, and I don’t put the speaker in my car window. The external speakers and the other car radios kind of add to the overall sound experience of the movie.

Next weekend is (I think) Swing Vote and Mamma Mia so there will probably a larger attendance. And hopefully more interesting (and lighter) pics.

Olympics Medal Tracker

August 10, 2008

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Olympic Medal winners at NBC!

We love the drive-in

August 3, 2008

That’s from a Beach Boys song. There’s no actual “we” here that loves the drive-in, though I do really like it a lot.

We have a local drive-in that’s been around for a really long time, at least since I was a little kid, and that’s quite awhile. Growing up our family used to go to the drive-in pretty often in the summer, and then later I used to go there on dates. I moved away 14 years ago, moved back 10 years later, and had only been back to the local place once since then.

I love movies. I have a somewhat large DVD collection (yes, I’m sure there are several people who have a much bigger inventory than I do) and have all the premium channels that my cable company provides (which is less than any other cable company I’ve had provides). But our nearest regular movie theatre is about 40 miles away. They show 1 movie, 6 nights a week, with no matinees. The nearest multiplex is about 1-1/2 hours away which means going to see 1 movie can kill a whole day, and I don’t have that kind of time.

Have I mentioned I love movies? Before moving back to Tiny Town I lived less than a mile from the above-mentioned multiplex and usually saw a movie 2 or 3 times a week. Before that I lived about 5 miles from a multiplex and saw about 2-3 movies a week on the big screen. Before that I lived within walking distance of 3 theatres and saw an average of 4-5 movies a week (not counting the times when I sometimes watched the same movie twice). It’s very hard to go cold turkey from that much entertainment. And that much popcorn.

OK, I didn’t go cold turkey on popcorn but Orville Redenbacher’s finest isn’t as good as movie theatre popcorn. With extra butter-flavored topping.

Since I am always working, and since it is so damn inconvenient to go to the movies when you live in Tiny Town, I rarely have time to go to the theatre. I try to make it to about 2-3 movies a year, including taking the nephews to the latest Harry Potter movie (which aren’t yearly). When I didn’t think I would be able to see the X-Files anytime soon (I did see it at the multiplex on opening day, more about that later), I looked up the local drive-in’s website to see what was coming up, and it was The Dark Knight and Get Smart this weekend, with The X-Files and The Happening next weekend. I’m so there! Or I was this past Friday night at least.

I’m not going to give a review of the movies but I will say that yes, I did think TDK was awesome (even though I still don’t like Christian Bale, I do think he does this version of Batman well) and Get Smart was funnier than I expected – I actually thought this was a good role for Steve Carell (he’s not my favorite), and I like Anne Hathaway in everything I’ve seen her in.

Instead of a movie review, because who cares what I think?, I wanted to bring a drive-in review. Though not so much of a review, as an overview and a kind of comparison of drive-ins v. regular theatres. I’m sure there are a lot of people that have never been to a drive-in, or have never thought about going to one, or who have never cared if they ever went to one. Just like regular theatres have differences between them, I’m sure drive-ins are different from each other as well, but I think there are a lot of similarities. Of course I’ve only been to 3 different drive-ins.

To hopefully make this shorter, and probably more coherent, I’m doing this in bullet form. These may not be true of all drive-ins, but it probably is in general.


The good of the drive-in experience:

  • Double feature for the price of one (some may have 1 or 3 movies though)
  • Cheaper for adults (ours is $6.00 – yes, 6 bucks for 2 movies – that’s cheaper than a matinee)
  • Cheaper for kids (sometimes kids get in free, here 10 and under is free with paying adult)
  • Closer (for me anyway, it’s only 8 miles away v. 40 miles or more)
  • Comfortable seating, with leg room, and no one stepping on you because they sat in the middle of the row and feel the need to leave the theatre 4 times during the movie. If your car’s seats aren’t comfortable you can bring a lawn chair, or a blanket, or even an air mattress if that’s what you feel you need, or you can get all white trash and put a La-Z-Boy in the bed of your pickup (yes, I’ve seen that done many times).
  • Volume and temperature is controlled by you – no more worries about being too cold or not being able to hear the dialogue. Some drive-ins still have the speakers available that you put in your window, but most use a radio frequency now.
  • No annoying teenagers talking too loud or throwing food and drinks
  • No annoying cell phones ringing (at least here because there is no cell signal, although I was parked by the projection booth and a group of teenage boys, for some unknown reason, thought they could get a signal by standing next to the booth)
  • The Concession Stand – Ours has a wide selection on their fast food-type menu like burgers, hot dogs, french fries, onion rings, pizza, breaded chicken or fish, ice cream, shakes, and on and on, in addition to the usual popcorn-candy-nachos (which is cheaper than a regular theatre). They discourage it, but you could also bring your own food and drinks (like the half bottle of Mountain Dew I had in addition to 1 of their large fountain Dews. Oh and I also had a tub of popcorn with extra butter [flavor] and a peanut butter sundae. Hey, 6 hours is a long time).
  • Kid’s play area – Ours has a small play area with swings and 2 other things (I didn’t pay that much attention). It was better, and in better shape, when I was a kid, but I was more interested in the movie than playing then anyway.
  • Large screen + no worries about not being able to see over the person in front of you. I had an SUV parked in front of me and had no problems seeing the screen.
  • Intermission – You usually get a break between movies to get something (more) to eat, go the bathroom, or just stretch your legs. Or whatever.
  • Smoking? Here you can. Might come in handy (see below). Same for drinking, just make sure you have a designated driver. Some places probably prohibit alcohol.
  • Like sex in (semi) public? Sure, if that’s what you’re into. Or if you just can’t help yourself. Not that I would know anything about that. Just park in the back. Or in a dark corner. Not into voyeurism? Don’t park in the back. Or in a dark corner.


The bad:

  • There’s no exact start time – Usually around the time it gets dark, but that can be a broad period of time. I got there about 8 and it didn’t start until 9, but I read a book and talked to a friend and her family.
  • Double feature – you can see both movies or one (same price either way) but there’s no exact start time if you only want to see the 2nd movie.
  • Rain – We had thunder and lightning all night but thankfully only about 10 or 15 minutes of rain. You can roll your car windows up but if it gets too bad they’ll probably shut down and then that just sucks.
  • Seasonal – In warmer climates they may stay open most of the year but since we have 4 seasons ours is only open from about June to mid or early September.
  • Limited showings – Most are only open on the weekends, which is when they get most of their business, so if weekends aren’t an option for you then you’re out of luck.
  • It’ll be a late night – It was 2 a.m. when the movies were over. That’s not late for me, but for some people it is.
  • External noise – Like the assholes who decide to make their vehicles as noisy as possible when driving on the highway past the drive-in. And people who think that car horns are way fun! They are usually quick to be shut up or beaten to near death here though.

Next week I’ll try to take pictures. If I don’t forget my camera again.