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Showing posts from March, 2019

Yes, You Can: Take a Vacation by Yourself

This is part of my Solo Living: Yes You Can series. Click here to find the intro and all the topics. Solo vacationing can be one of the most freeing and relaxing ways to travel. I'm sure you can think of at least one time when you took a trip only to have your getaway ruined by your companion.

I love a good vacation. There's nothing better than taking a few days off to decompress and get away from the stress of life. In my family, even when we didn't have a lot of money, it was considered important to have these little weekends. Sometimes we stayed with a family member. Sometimes, we would drive an hour away to the closest big city and spend a night in the Holiday Inn Holidome (remember those?). We thought that was big stuff. There was an indoor pool and a video game arcade. Sometimes Mom and Dad would go out for dinner, and we three girls would get to order pizza and watch TV ALONE.

It wasn't always easy sharing a hotel room with 5 people, 4 of them being female. We …

Solo Living, Yes You Can

I was once interviewed on a podcast and given a list of question I should think about to prepare. One of those questions was: What is something you think you do better than most? At the time, I struggled to think of an answer. I could think of a bunch of skills I have, but something I do better than most means I can offer expertise to others that is sound. I finally came up with my answer: I can do life alone better than most.

I am 42 years old, have never been married, and have no kids. This isn't entirely by choice, although I've made choices along the way that contributed to my single status. I truly wish I had a marriage partner, but for me, it hasn't happened yet. One of the things that makes it bearable is my ability to do things alone and not allow my solo state to hold me back from living the life I desire. I have decided to start a series of posts about solo living.

The reason this seems worthwhile is that I purposefully didn't do things for many years becaus…

Movie Review: Jordan Peele's Us (2019)

Although Jordan Peele's Us makes use of tried-and-true horror tropes, he repackages them with some very powerful imagery, an intriguing scenario, and a mostly black cast to paint a creepy tale with an interesting blend of gore and suspense.

I am very fond of Stephen King's novel It, and the cold open gave me that feel with the 1985 carnival, where we meet young Adelaide and her parents. As she walks off alone and towards the beach, I half expected to see Pennywise with a balloon. The whole first scenario with her foray into the "Find Yourself" fun house and the cut to the wall of rabbit cages with the opening track from the soundtrack, Anthem, playing was pure gold. 
The well-know Us trailer showed everyone that a family of four gathering for a cozy coastal vacation is surprised to be invaded by a group in red jumpsuits, who just happen to look exactly like the family. But it doesn't show much more than that. I went into the film unsure of what to expect. I enjo…

Movie Review: Robin Bissell's The Best of Enemies (2019)

Politically, America is more divided than ever, with seemingly no room for compromise. The Best of Enemies is a true story that shows what can happen when very different people from different worlds come together and work for a common cause. The story is set in Durham, NC, 1971. Durham happens to be my current home, and residents of Durham are proud as can to call Ann Atwater a "favorite son" of Bull City.

Ann Atwater is an African American female who knows how to get things done. She appears to be the appointed mouth of her people. She is shown advocating for families who are being treated unfairly in the housing market. She attends town council meetings where a landlord might be called to task for treating families of color unfairly. When Ann is treated dismissively, she's not opposed to slapping someone on the head with a telephone receiver.

C.P. Ellis is also a natural leader and admired by many. He just happens to be the local leader of the Durham Klu Klux Klan. Na…

Justin Baldoni's Five Feet Apart (2019): A Sick Lit Love Story With Heart and Some Schmaltz

In 2014, The Fault in our Stars, a teen novel by John Green, was released on screen, receiving mostly positive reviews. Yes, it was a love story about two teens with cancer, but it was told with such an honest and quirky voice that it rose above the average "sick lit" tale. Here was a teen to which readers/viewers could relate. In 2017, Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon, received the same treatment. This time, however, the story received less than stellar praise. Folks from the disabled community who were eager for representation in this movie were dismayed that the main character ended up not truly being sick (instead she's a victim of Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy), adding to the many narratives featuring characters with disabilities or illnesses who are far from empowering.

Now in 2019, the newest "sick lit" story has come to the screen. In this case, however, the movie screenplay was written before the book. Five Feet Apart features Cole Sprouse as Will …