Saturday, June 8, 2013

It’s time to grab a bathing cap and enjoy some Esther Williams movies.

With Sam out of town until next Sunday I’m primed for a great week of guilty pleasure television viewing here at Howdygram headquarters, featuring all the fantastic crap he’d never watch in a million years, such as: 1) That Touch of Mink (1962) starring Doris Day and Cary Grant; 2) The Rains Came (1939) starring Tyrone Power, Myrna Loy and George Brent; 3) In Old Chicago (1937) — the bullshit Hollywood version of Mrs. O’Leary’s cow and the Great Chicago Fire — starring Alice Faye, Tyrone Power and Don Ameche; 4) The Reluctant Debutante (1958) starring Sandra Dee, Angela Lansbury and Rex Harrison; and 5) the latest episodes of “Mad Men,” “Real Housewives of New Jersey” and “Tabatha’s Salon Takeover.” Glorioski!
The Rains Came is an outstanding film with terrific performances by some A-list supporting actors, including Nigel Bruce as a Myrna Loy’s evil jerk of a husband and Maria Ouspenskaya as the chain-smoking Maharani. Incidentally, if anybody knows why Myrna Loy has arms like a fat Negro woman (see above) please send me an email as soon as possible. Thank you.
In addition to all of the above, TCM will show its entire Esther Williams film library on June 13 and 14 and I recommend that you make plans to record a few of her movies! My personal favorites are Thrill of a Romance (1945) with Van Johnson and Million Dollar Mermaid (1952) with Victor Mature. Grab a bathing cap and enjoy the show, okay? A portrait of Esther and Van from Thrill of a Romance appears below. (In case you haven’t heard the news, Esther Williams died a few days ago. I’ll be sitting shiva in the bathtub.)
Know what I bought today on Another two-pound sack of chia seeds and a Kohler Flipside showerhead ... advertised as FOUR SHOWERS IN ONE! Four!
According to Kohler’s promotional crapola, the Flipside showerhead “allows you to enjoy the spray that best fits your needs. Koverage is a full spray that is perfect for everyday use, while Kotton releases a dense, soft downpour that resembles a spa spray. Komotion and Kurrent are ideal for massaging the body, with Kurrent offering a targeted massage spray and Komotion delivering a full-face spray in an exhilarating, circular pattern that relaxes and refreshes.” I don’t know about you, but this thing sounds freakin’ INCREDIBLE.

Just in case you didn’t know, this month it’s been SIX YEARS since I quit smoking. There’s a secret to quitting: You’ll never do it unless you absolutely, positively WANT TO. I smoked a pack a day for 42 years (starting when I was 14 years old) and couldn’t answer the phone or sit down in a restaurant without lighting up. I finally quit cold turkey in 2007 when Sam and I bought Howdygram headquarters and I swore I would never turn our dream house into a nicotine pit. The day we wrote the check for our down payment I threw my More menthols into the dumpster and never looked back. I didn’t get the shakes, I didn’t try to rip anybody’s head off, I didn’t crave a cigarette, I didn’t need nicotine patches or nicotine gum or hypnosis or support groups or Sara Lee cheesecake. Six years later I’m still smoke-free and our house smells like those little lilac Yankee Candle electric air freshener thingies. For decades I was the only smoker in my family and the last smoker in my circle of friends. If I can do it, people, ANYBODY can do it. Hooray for me and thank you for reading this.

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