Tag Archives: Skype

Men of action

Since I had a late night celebrating New Year’s Eve — thank you, Skype — I decided to ease into 2015 reading on the couch.

Today’s tome?

Cary Elwes Photo and Book 09262014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No, Cary Elwes wasn’t here with me, darn the luck — but his memoir of the casting, preparation and filming of The Princess Bride reads like a candid conversation.

Elwes reminisces about every step and misstep (literally) in his journey as the sword-wielding Westley, true love of Buttercup and (SPOILER ALERT) secret identity of the Dread Pirate Roberts.  Every word telegraphs his enduring love for the role and for the cast and crew, as do sidebars from co-stars Mandy Patinkin, Robin Wright, Wallace Shawn, Billy Crystal and director Rob Reiner.

But it is Elwes’ gratitude and humility some 25 years later that are most endearing.  He has enjoyed a successful career in film, but acknowledges that he owes an enormous debt to…

The Man in Black.

 

 

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Mind your words

While attempting to chat with my sister on Skype today — she was either away from her computer or ignoring me — I noticed a feature for the first time.

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Skype allows you to review chats with your individual contacts for up to a year previous.

Yowsers.

So while I was waiting for Lou to respond — she didn’t — I re-read a chat conversation we had last October.

“Memories…light the corners of my mind.”

If Lou were around,  she’d appreciate that.

It takes a village

Spock was famous for his Vulcan mind meld.

My family had one today via Twitter.

chocolate_oatmeal_cookiesIt began when my nephew tweeted his slightly unorthodox breakfast choice — chocolate oatmeal cookies.

I replied that his aunt would be proud — not me, my sister Lou.  She has made and eaten many batches of the slightly ugly cookie…even when they didn’t really turn out.

I mean, look at them — does it really matter?

My nephew ‘favorited’ my tweet, and I shared the conversation with my sister via Skype chat (knowing she doesn’t check Twitter as often as I do).  Now she is inspired to make some of the chocolate morsels for the first time in years!

Don’t you just love social media??

Dynamic duos

Ricky and Lucy.  Ross and Rachel.  Sam and Diane.   Every generation has had its seminal TV couple.  But not today.

We gots all kinds of ’em!

Thanks to a really strong lineup of sitcoms — and dramas, too — the current television landscape boasts multiple couples with great chemistry, fun banter, and unconventional relationships.

Do I have favorites?  You betcha!  (Thanks for asking.)

Here are my 2011 Top Five TV Couples:

No. 5Sheldon and Amy, The Big Bang Theory — Call them the ‘uncouple’.  They don’t like to spend too much time together, preferring to Skype.  The terms ‘girlfriend’ and ‘boyfriend’ offend their sensibilities.  And the only kiss they have ever exchanged was more scientific experiment than sexual act.  But their pairing has added a spark to the already smoking nerd fest that is TBBT. Long live Shamy!

No. 4:  Jack and Liz, 30 Rock — We’ve all had that work colleague who is more than a friend.  But in the fantastical world that is 30 Rock, Liz and Jack’s more-than-a-friendship mentor-ship blurs the lines in bizarre, often disturbing, always hilarious ways.  Heck, they even got married by accident.  If I had a nickel…

No. 3:  Castle and Beckett, Castle — This may be a TV drama, but anyone who watches Castle knows this police procedural is sprinkled with a heavy helping of funny, thanks to Nathan Fillion’s take on its namesake.  And his chemistry with Detective Beckett is as Sam and Diane as it gets on TV today.  Will they?  Won’t they?  When?  Hurry up already!

No.2:  Ben and Leslie, Parks & Recreation — My favorite ‘newbie couple’ on TV today, Ben and Leslie are as positive and life affirming as those shiba inu puppies on the web cam.  I love their characters separately; I love the idea of them together even more.  Since the series is relatively young, I thought they’d keep us dangling like a worm on a hook in a lake in a park in Indiana. But did you see last night?  “Uh oh.”

And, last but definitely not least, my choice for the absolute bestest TV couple of 2011:

No. 1:  Claire and Phil, Modern Family — No couple on TV is funnier because no two actors are braver.  The Dunphys’ sexual exploits alone are worth a spin-off.  (Could they be more unsuccessful?  How did they have three children?)   This week’s episode “Bad Dog, Good Dog”  — featuring a brilliant parenting role switcheroo — was yet another tour de force for Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen.  They are, simply put, the very best on television today.

Emmy voters, mark your ballots.



Going dark

How long would you last off the grid?  Your Internet connection wiped.  No texting, no Facebook, no tweeting, no, no…

Sorry.  Things started to go a bit dark there for a minute.

Last night’s episode of “Modern Family” posed the question as an intra-family competition, which ended up lasting two short, very difficult days for the Dunphy family.  (Phil won.  Then it turned out his oldest daughter tricked him, and that she actually won.  If you didn’t see it, well my goodness, why not??)

Two days off line?  I wouldn’t last that long.

Heck, to write this blog entry alone, I had six browser windows open — WordPress, Facebook,  AOL, Twitter, NYTimes.com and Google.  Plus, I had my Palm Pre at my side.  And I was watching television and Skyping with my sister.

Off the grid?  More like off the charts.

I can’t remember the last time I sat down and simply watched TV.  Tweeting and checking Facebook have become a natural part of the experience.  See an actor that you don’t recognize?  Look them up on imdb.com.  Hear a funny line?  Post it on Facebook…or share it via an open chat window on AIM.

Sitting back and passively enjoying entertainment is a thing of the past.  Interacting with that TV show or movie or Youtube video — that’s the norm today.  And the thought of even 48 hours without that option gives me the willies.

So, cheer up, Phil.  Your daughter might have pulled a fast one on you, but you would have kicked my butt at this bet (if I had the guts to enter in the first place).

Did you know…Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who met while at Stanford University and collaborated on the Google web search engine, originally called it “BackRub” ?  Snazzy.

New traditions

And so it is Christmas.

When I was a little girl, every Christmas morning you would find me in the kitchen , making fruit salad for the big Christmas lunch that my Mom held for family friends. The people in attendance might change, but the menu — baked hen and ham — and the holiday event at our house were a reassuring tradition.

Christmas Eve was also the same evening year after year. Mass in the early evening. Home for appetizers and homemade candy before opening gifts. A strictly family affair, I can remember being rather peeved the first time one of my brothers introduced a girlfriend into the proceedings.

Tradition was so important back then.

Now that my mother is gone, and my brothers and sisters are scattered across the country, our holiday ‘tradition’ changes every year. We exchange gifts via Skype now — how cool is that? The day and time changes every year now, but that’s part of the adventure.

Just being together in whatever way works — that’s the tradition that is most important.

Merry Christmas everyone!