Mr. Wow Blog
Mr. wOw’s Midsummer This N’ That
12:03 am | July 20, 2011

Author: Mr. Wow | Category: Point of View | Comments: 72


Our beloved columnist reflects on the news of the day — followed by a suitably summery dessert

First off, I’m pissed off. If the president and the Congress fail to come up with some kind of deal regarding the debt ceiling, I’m calling on every member of Congress, and President Obama, to stop receiving their paychecks. Everybody should be ashamed and nobody in Washington deserves to be paid. At the moment, I am thoroughly ashamed to be an American. But I deserve my paycheck!

Here in late July, I almost felt sorry for poor old Rupert Murdoch, grilled by Britain’s Parliament. Almost. Then I got over it. Even when he was hit with a pie, I think he’ll survive to continue to influence America’s politics. But it was nice to see him humbled in Britain.

Also: enough with the crap about “hunting down” Casey Anthony. Excuse me — because it’s easy to intimidate a woman? I don’t recall O.J. or Robert Blake needing to go into hiding. I think she killed her child. The jury (rightfully, given the evidence) found her not guilty, which is not innocent. Leave her to heaven or hell. Go about your own business.

There — relax. My three serious thoughts. Now, the silly:

Now, some of you might recall last year’s Mr. wOw post about the terrible sunburn back when he was 16. It’s an amusing story now, but almost required hospitalization at the time. And I never quite learned my lesson. For years I tanned during the summer months, convinced it would finally clear up my acne prone skin (not really) and that I looked so much cuter with a tan (that was true.) But about ten years ago, my adorable freckles were turning into “age spots.”  Who the hell’s hands and arms were these, I gasped. So, I became a vampire, slathered in sunscreen even on cloudy days, walking on the shady side of the street, certainly never ever deliberately baking myself. The result? Nada. The spots kept on popping up, especially on my left hand. My dermatologist told me it wasn’t so bad, these were the results of my youthful sunbathing and “Anyway, you’re well into your fifties, how do you expect to look?” This guy doesn’t know too many gay men, clearly.

So this year, I looked at my pale self and I said, “Mr. W, you have only one life to live — so live it this summer with a bit of color.” I still slather myself with sunscreen, but on sunny days I take 10 minutes to bathe in the vitamin D. That’s all I need. I look fabulous.

Summer reading? Alas, when it’s this hot I find it difficult to wrap my head around something new and challenging. Or even light and fluffy. I have re-read Antonia Fraser’s “Mary Queen of Scots.” Good grief! What a story! I’m sorry, you are missing out on so much if you don’t love history.

TV viewing? I must admit, lately I have fallen into true-crime programs — “ID” and “Snapped” and other grisly fare. I also enjoy my share of mindless horror and action films. I did try, over the weekend, to give “House of Sand and Fog” another try. I’d loathed it on release some years back, but there it was on one of my 500 cable channels and I thought, “Oh, don’t be so inflexible. Maybe you missed the point.” I did not. It is as vile and depressing, misogynist and pointless as ever. And Jennifer Connelly’s character is as miserable and pathetic as I’d remembered.

And there are always the “Law & Order” marathons. And a few Disney shows with cute boys. I like “The Closer” and “Breaking Bad” and “Royal Pains” — I have a weakness for smart, hot Jewish guys like Mark Feuerstein.

On the upscale side, I caught “All About Eve” again for at least the hundredth time since I first saw it, at the age 10. I didn’t quite “get” it then, though I knew I was seeing something pretty fabulous. By the time I was fifteen, and on my own, I watched it one night and literally pissed my pants it was so great, funny, trenchant. I called friends to say, “Oh, my God — ‘All About Eve,’ it’s incredible.’” ”Yes, honey — we know,” came the replies.

I especially like the scene in the theater lobby with George Sanders, when Bette Davis, as Margo Channing, ends up standing next to a caricature of herself, in whatever play she is supposed to be appearing in. “How nice for you. How nice for Eve. How nice for everybody!” she bites out those lines with the famous eyes popping grandly.

Summer appreciation: to The New Yorker‘s Richard Brody, who wrote a wonderful review of Marilyn Monroe’s 1960 musical comedy “Let’s Make Love.” (Included in a New York City retrospective of her films.) This is one of Mr. wOw’s fave MM flicks. It’s minor, it’s poorly directed, and Monroe doesn’t have much of a role. But she is utterly charming in all she does — an attractive, affectionate, normal young woman. Her musical numbers are over the top, which gives the movie a kind of schizophrenic vibe. I much prefer “Let’s Make Love” to the pretentious and condescending “The Misfits.” Anyway, thank you, Mr. Brody.

Love to all,

Mr. wOw

  • rick gould

    Mr. wOw–
    Good for you for getting a bit of a tan… all things in moderation, etc.
    I’m in Portland, OR and summer has been less than scintillating, so when the sun comes out, I say the hell with it, put on sunscreen and get a glow ;)

    I’ve never seen “Let’s Make Love.” I did watch, online, the making of MM’s last uncompleted film, “Something’s Gotta Give.” Fascinating for many reasons. It was interesting seeing her getting away from the “breathy” MM persona. And it’s the thinnest I’ve ever seen Marilyn in a movie. The “what ifs?” are heartbreaking…

    But relating to what you were saying, it was fascinating watching MM interact with children, the dog and bantering lightheartedly with Dean Martin. Nothing over the top, but just someone who inhabited the screen so naturally.
    It’s the same reason I watch “The Sandpiper” every so often. Not for the firebreathing declarations of love between ET and Burton, but the quieter scenes in between… the gift for stillness onscreen is what Burton called it (though he didn’t always practice it ;) And I happen to think she looked especially lovely in that film, windblown and tan and serene.
    Happy rest of the summer ;)

    12:41 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Rick…

      Yeah, 10 minutes every other day and I’m fine.  I use a 50 sunblock.  My age spots?  Well, as my dermo said, “How the hell do you expect to look at this point?”  Sometimes clarity arrives when you least expect it.

      MM was almost perilously slender in “Something’s Got To Give”  but she had been terribly hurt by criticism of her plumpness, beginning with “Some Like It Hot.”  But she was ravishing-looking at the end.  And seemed to be attempting a more normal character in that film, tho the script was a real loser.  If only she’d been able to sleep.  That was the great demon.  And unlike Judy, MM never resorted to uppers. 

      As for “The Sandpiper” I too, think ET is terrific-looking, tho the conceit of her as a poor bohemian artist is a bit much.  And while her performance was quieter than usual, she had her moments–as when an old beau attempts to rape her, tearing open her blouse to reveal her bosoms about to escape a teeny bikini top.  ET grabbed and ax (an ax!) and shrieked, “You do it, and I’ll kill you!!!”    I recall the audience, which had barely recovered from the near-naked sight of Miss T., applauded wildly.

      10:32 am | July 20, 2011
      • rick gould

        Mr. W
        Liz, a purple bra and an ax!
        I remember when she turned 60 and was on Larry King, he asked his usual off-the-wall, idiotic questions. He actually asked, “What about ‘The Sandpiper?’”
        REALLY, Larry, REALLY…you want to know in-depth about The fricking Sandpiper?

        Liz just crinkled her nose and smiled, saying,”It was kind of schlocky, but fun.”

        Glad Larry cleared that up ;)

        12:56 pm | July 20, 2011
        • Mr. Wow

          Dear Rick…

          “The Sandpiper” didn’t know where it was going.  I liked–after ET had expressed herself as a free, open woman–she then freaks out when Burton (a married minister) comes to her and says he has confessed his infidelity to his wife.  “You told her.  About us?  That we made love.  How could you.  It’s too private.  It’s too private to tell!!” (This at her highest shriek-level) 

          That movie made  a gaziilion bucks. 

          3:12 pm | July 20, 2011
  • ElizabethP

    Speaking of Bette, I happened to watch Jezebel again this weekend. I love how you can just see the wheels turning in her head.
    And I like your take on sunscreen and tanning. I know. I slather myself with the stuff year round and have, thankfully, never really enjoyed lying out in the sun. So boring. So hot. In the case of the beach, all that sand clinging to you. However, I live on the Mediterranean so I can’t completely avoid the sun unless I want to become a hermit so I’ve just decided to stop fretting about it. I wear the sunscreen, I gravitate towards the shade (naturally), I even wear a hat in summer, but no more fretting if a ray of sun lands on me.

    5:12 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Elizabeth…

      “Jezebel” is an exquisite performance.  Fine-grained, subtle.

      10:33 am | July 20, 2011
  • Mary

    Mr Wow,  I am white as paper and I have been white as paper for a few years.  I used to sit in the sun and get a beautiful golden color, now I don’t have the patience for it and my skin is so fair that I get those Age spots very quickly.  If you watched the Jayce Dugard story Dianne Sawyer commented on her beautiful skin and Jayce says, it is the result of being sunless for many years.   I love this time of the year but this week is a good week to stay in and stay cool wherever you can find it.  It is miserably hot with humidity of 90%.  I plan to stay inside and watch movies today.   I have a few I love and a few I bought on sale that I haven’t even looked at yet.  Today is a good day to do it. 

    Speaking of movies, I think it was a couple of years ago that I read and loved the book, “The Help”.  The movie is coming out Aug. 10th and I am looking so forward to seeing it.

    6:37 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Mary…

      While I truly believe over-exposure to the sun is a potential killer—or at least it doesn’t bode well for graceful aging–I figured I’d go for a glow this summer, with proper caution. 

      As for this time of year–I hate it.  As a young man I loved the summer, but my metabolism or something has changed and I perspire heavily and embarassingly.  Nothing really helps and it most likely a side-effect of certain medications i must take.  I’m miserable in hot weather.  I like winter!  (And one can dress much more creatively when it is cooler.)

      12:37 pm | July 20, 2011
      • Richard Bassett

        Mr WoW

        It is called:  H  *  U  *   M   *  I    *   D   *    I     *   T    *    Y

        3:45 pm | July 20, 2011
        • KarenR

          Southeast Michigan’s a Finnish sauna today – 101 degrees, 65% humidity at three o’clock this afternoon.

          3:33 pm | July 21, 2011
    • Maggie W

      Mary, I am also looking forward to the movie.  When I heard Bryce Dallas Howard is ” Miss Hilly”, I groaned.  I just couldn’t see it. But her reviews have been excellent!   Stockett is writing a prequel to The Help, with emphasis on Aibileen in her younger years.   I will be in line for that book!

      6:37 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Tanning. On our first European assignment we lived in Frankfurt near Grunberg Park. Completely unsuspecting, I went jogging in the park one day and came across whole families of naked people picnicking and sunbathing. Everyone from the babies right up to Grandma and Grandpa. We soon learned this was common and saw it elsewhere – at lakes and beaches. Avid sunbathers over there. And no tan lines!

    8:49 am | July 20, 2011
  • On Casey Anthony – I agree, I also believe she is guilty but the jury did not get the ammo they needed for a guilty verdict. The rest of us can shun her, refuse her service, boycott anyone who pays her for her story, make clear that we hold her in contempt… make her into something worse than Hester Prynne… but it is not smart or helpful for all these angry folks to post violent remarks all over the Internet.

    If something does happen to her, anyone who made a credible threat will be in an enormous and unmanageable pool of suspects. Not to mention, an actual vigilante might not post anything at all. It’s a lot of noise for law enforcement to potentially have to sift through.

    8:56 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Lila—

      I feel fairly certain that Ms. Anthony will end up jailed again.  Drugs or hooking or theft or a bad boyfriend who is dealing.  I doubt her three years behind bars brought her a new outlook. 

      And while I have no sympathy for her, I detest vigilante “justice” and the hateful outpourings of total strangers.  Casey Anthony’s terrible deed affected nobody except her dead baby and her shattered family.   I’m far more inclined to be outraged over debt and unemployment and the waste of our money in this country. 

      12:23 pm | July 20, 2011
      • KarenR

        If not for Nancy Grace’s attention the case wouldn’t have gotten so much attention. Now that Anthony’s been found not guilty but has been thoroughly demonized to the point she’s threatened I think it would be karmic justice if Casey Anthony sued the crap out of Nancy Grace et al.

        3:28 pm | July 21, 2011
        • Mr. Wow

          Dear Karen..

          Tho I can’t support an alleged baby-killer, I do enjoy the idea of Ms. Dis-Grace being sued.

          8:06 pm | July 21, 2011
  • I love the idea of not paying our politicians. Warren Buffet (who advocates higher taxes for the rich) quipped that he could fix the budget deficit in 5 minutes: simply pass a law saying that any time the budget is not balanced, no one currently in office is eligible for re-election.

    8:59 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Lila…

      I’m with Mr. Buffet!

      10:35 am | July 20, 2011
      • Tee Zee

        I would add “or be able to collect any paycheck or retirement benefit!

        11:57 am | July 20, 2011
  • Jamie
    J G

    Dear Mr. Wow,
    Here is to being silly! I’m sure you look fab, and more importantly feel fab. Re: one side of your face and hands having more spots then the other side, I believe it’s called telangiectasia.

    I just attended a luncheon at our hospital where a dermatologist spoke, and mentioned this happens to us in our 50s on our neck, face and hands, usually from driving and having more sun on one side, etc. (who knows, my word might be all wrong, but I think the definition is correct), even if you don’t drive. Just walking on one side of the street in Hoboken more then the other over time can cause it.

    Thank you for the reading tip. I’m going to order Mary Queen of Scots.

    Have a silly day.


    10:44 am | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear JG…

      Well, I don’t drive.  It’s not my face, just my hand.  I think it’s because it’s the hand I always use to fish cash and my keys out of my pocket, rubbing off the sunscreen.   Anyway, I’m trying to be adult about it.   Even at this point I’ll start comparing myself to somebody on the bus or the street and then I’ll think–”idiot!  That guy is maybe 30 years younger than you. Get over it!”

      You’ll love “Mary Queen of Scots.”

      11:27 am | July 20, 2011
      • Richard Bassett

        1971, Mary Queen of Scotts,

        I was on my first date that was not a high school ‘group’ deal in 1971. Of course, my father still had to drive us to the cinema and pick us up at the ice cream soda shop, nearby, at a specific time. There was a reference of homosexuality in the film, which made me and my date squirm in our seats with embarrassment. But later, I got up the nerve to hold hands (I didn’t feel comfortable for reasons I would discover much later on) Vanessa Redgrave was great in the role. But in three different scenes, talking about three different men, she claims” ” But I can’t exists with you (him) “…..a bit commical. I went steady, as much as you could go steady, with her”Claire”all year long. I waited unfor Heather the next to go steady with a year later as who I eventually married .But I REALLY had a crush on John Aclin, who felt for Annapolis Naval Academy. We became very close, the double dating and heart to heart talks…only to discover that he was going to ask Heather out but I beat him to it. To be around her, he had to be around me…waiting for a break-up that never took place. That Christmas, I bought Heather a pearl ring (which wasn’t cheap). John got the message and attempted to ask many girls out..but, they all said no because they knew he had a ‘thing’ for Heather and didn’t want to be second best. High School drama. Heather knew all along, never encouraged it, but it was I (as she sat next to each other in Biology) who wanted. She cringed everytime I talked about Claire but in all of Healther’s purity and overwhelming looks that drove Chair away. She didn’t have to do or be a thing.

        1:56 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Richard Bassett

                          Of course, I was medically induced into getting a tan from a baby. Thanks to my parents who were both born with the psoriases gene and the chance of me acquiring it is 100%. I had it as a small child and only my arms were affected, which healed after playing them after some blue light at the docted. At 21, just when I needed to be prettiest the most. I suffered spending an hour in U/ Mass Medical Center a stand up tanning bed. This was 1976 and this UV light was experimental and very new. After 16weeks three sessions a wook, it worked…I was psoriasis free, tan and burned, A bad burn it. 1979 I had it again’ *when I get a break out, it literally can cover my body in a few days* In UCLA (Los Angeles). Back to the lights but things had progressed. I took a photosensitive drug an hour before the session *increasing the sun’s affect* and then sat in a UVB unit five times a week, 30 minutes each day. Here I was… an actor/model and having the worst skin condition I could get. The truth was, back in Boston, I had seen patients who had them covered from head to toe, and they couldn’t scratch or move, splitting, bleeding skin and needed to be sedated. That terrified me.
                  That could be me! The trip from Boston to LA for a dozen years helped. Constant sunshine but I never experienced the ‘total body’ psoriasis outbreak in the 1970”s again. The strong sun (no sunscreen) was indicated, I was very tan but psoriasis free. But as time went by, the tanning lights improved and I found myself (little out of vanity) using them both. UVA, light which started activation of the melatonin (to wake up) and the UVB, the burning rays which would provide the amount (darkness) of melanom. Melanoma is producing your inner organs from the sun’s rays…so they won’t allow them to burn. Sometimes I was too tan, for certain auditions. The sun is much stronger the closer to the equator you are but you don’t always feel it, especially in the desert. In terms of being a drug addict, crystal meth quickly ignites the psoriasis’s to return (as does too much alcohol).
                                    It was back to Boston (eventually) where the sun is weaker and not dependable. I had graduated into different range of UVA &UVB lights they were advancing while I was away. Treatment lasting five to ten minutes and no burning. Just light. One or two small episodes cleared them up, and I was still left with a tan. Lying in the sun, here, in the east is much more uncomfortable than western sun (especially in near Palm Springs…which is a smog free desert). Here, there is such humidity (torturing you) and the clouds make the sun come in and out for hours…there were no clouds in LA, just straight sunlight. I am too uncomfortable to spend the day at the beach for very long.  There haven’t been any outbreaks for a dozen years, mostly using the advanced UVA & UVB models. I would use it minimally and 15 minutes for a few weeks which, in the winter months, isn’t a great sacrifice. A sunburn out here is biting, stinging, itching…and you can NEVER get the color that you want without a lot (too much) work. Lying near a sun trenched pool gives you the best color. I still use the UVA & B machines. I have color (nothing like LA) and I’m at the dermatologist for checkups every few months. Where they look at you with a magnifying glass and there are never any spots, moles or discolorations. As long as I am in this climate, it is the best I can do. I saw “All About Eve” last week-end and it just hit me: They weren’t really acting but playing who they ‘really’ were in their personal life. Just my opinion…

    10:54 am | July 20, 2011
  • Mr. Wow

    Well, Gary Merrill certainly thought Bette Davis was just like Margo Channing—that’s why he fell for her.  In reality, she was not nearly as glamorous or interestingly dramatic.  Although, she did require anger in her life and in her work—she was not content until she drove somebody crazy.   She had to battle, even when no battle was required. 

    11:30 am | July 20, 2011
  • Andy
    Andy C

    I do agree that the Congress, the Senate and the president should not get their checks.  Do you know that they received a cost of living increase this year, yet for the last couple of years, it was said that there was no increase in the cost of living and those that are on social security did not receive one. 

    I was out to lunch with a friend on Monday and for the first time ever, she was worried about money.  She’s not a wealthy person, but she’s always managed well.  Her husband died recently, and she’s now worried that if social security is cut, her money will not last — she’s 73, what is she to do?

    Our government should be ashamed; deeply ashamed — living high on the backs of those that desperately need it – I believe that the last time I got screwed over like this I at least got dinner and wine.

    3:04 pm | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Andy…

      I say we start a movement, here, on WoW–don’t pay those bastards! 

      3:52 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Baby Snooks

    I’ve waxed and waned eloquently, well, sort of eloquently, elsewhere on the “news of the day” and the socio-political ramifications, particularly about Rupert Murdoch and his “Mini-Me” and their “Command Performance” at Parliament so it’s on to vapidness for the rest of the day. I may come back later and become eloquent. Or I may not.

    Having rediscovered the joys of TCM I found myself entranced finally by the Cleopatra I’d never seen last night. Vivien Leigh was by far the most beautiful and certainly the campiest. I was so entranced I couldn’t tell you the name of the film, I think it was Caesar and Cleopatra, or who the co-stars were. I did wonder if perhaps in between the reading of the classics Elizabeth Taylor watched this a couple of times in preparation. She fell short of the campiness achieved by Vivien Leigh. And of the spectacular beauty. I don’t think any flm captured the beauty of Vivien Leigh more than this one.  How I missed it all these years is a mystery. As is how I managed to turn on the television at the right time last night. 
    As for The Sandpiper I think Elizabeth Taylor was always a bohemian at heart – she was always Earth Mother.  She was just more comfortable in silk and diamonds than in cotton and clay beads. 

    3:06 pm | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Baby…

      I have to agree.  Vivien was the most compelling screen Cleo.  I adored Claudette.  Elizabeth was something else entirely–it was all wrapped up with her image and “Le Scandale” etc.    And Viv was a more delicate and perhaps an even greater beauty than La Liz.  On screen, anyway.  (In the flesh, at her best, ET was staggering.)

      XXXMR W

      3:47 pm | July 20, 2011

      I also caught   Ceaser and Cleopatra  and Vivien Leigh was so funny in the begining and actually looked like a teenager even though I think she was in her thirties, Unfortunately I have been getting up at5
      am for work and never made it through the whole movie,   hopefully TCM will paly it again 

      I shgould have hit the DVR button  oh well

      3:19 pm | July 21, 2011
      • Mr. Wow

        Dear Small Town Girl…

        Catch that movie the next time it is on.  Viv is divine.  Yes, she was too old for the role, but who wasn’t?  Cleo was just a teenager when she met Julius.   Viv was slender and minx-ish.

        Miss Claudette Colbert was slender and minx-ish too, if way too modern in her manner. (tho she is very amusing!)

        Miss Taylor was voluptuous and not at all minx-ish.  But…she was Miss Taylor.   And when she ordered Burton, as Marc Antony, to “get on your knees”—well,  she pretty much sealed the deal as the ultimate Cleo. 

        8:16 pm | July 21, 2011
  • Rho

    Talking about summer??  All I will say is I am a winter person.  Hate this hot weather, I don’t want to venture out. 

    3:45 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Mr. Wow

    Dear Rho…

    I am pretty much a winter person myself, now.  I just want some summery glow this year.  I hate the heat and I hate to sweat and as I think as I mentioned above, autumn/winter dressing is much more fun. 

    3:49 pm | July 20, 2011
    • rick gould

      Mr. wOw-
      Maybe your column should have been called “Suddenly THIS Summer.” ;)

      I can only stand humidity if I am on a beach in a swim suit with a tropical drink in my hand… and friendly beach boys… not cannibals!

      6:17 pm | July 20, 2011
      • Mr. Wow

        Dear Rick…

        “It looked  as if…they had devoured him!!!!”

        Ah told him I didn’t want to wear it.  Why, it’s a scandal to the jaybirds!”

        Please…she was brilliant but so miscast in that one. 

        Yes, friendly beach boys, thank you.   And drinks with little umbrellas.

        9:21 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Rho

    Mr. Wow, when I was young, it was the thing to bake in the sun at the beach and mountains.  I did it because everyone did.  Actually, I went more to the mountains — The Borscht Belt — more in the winter than the summer.  My thing was ice skating and skiing.

    Now getting to Bette Davis, she is my favorite of all the old time actors.

    6:37 pm | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Rho…

      I love it–ice skating and sunbaking. 

      Bette was a champion to the very end.  “Dark Victory?”  One of my faves.     “Yes, I’ll have  a big plate of  prognosis negative!”

      9:27 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Deeliteful

    I will be 60 in September and in my teens and twenties I baked myself every summer (even using the combo of baby oil and iodine) to a beautiful golden tan. I do not have “age” spots, but I have had several skin cancers removed – so far no melanomas. Like many other things, wish I knew then what I know now. I use a self-tanning bronzer when I want that glow. Of course I can’t stand the heat anymore and wouldn’t lay out in the sun even if I could.

    7:42 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Bonnie O

    I can recall only a few movies filmed in the Monterey area of California.  Each of them has a sort-of cult following, including The Sandpiper.  Another was Play Misty For Me …. a thriller with Clint Eastwood.  And Alfred Hitchcock filmed some of Virtigo in the area.  Carmel-by-the-Sea, the actual name of the town, is truly a breathtaking spot in a State filled with beautiful oceanic and scenic views.  No 4 or 5 lane freeways blast through the area … it is still a coastal town with a two lane road leading in and out.  Weeskend traffic jams are notorious.

    Bette Davis -  I cannot think of an actress who is better … then or now…. was, indeed, magnificent in Jezebel;  yet, my favorites are The Letter (hello Sommerset Maughn) and Now, Voyager.

    As for the politicans in Washington and their wrangling over the deficit, debt, debt ceiling, entitlement overhaul, cuts in spending …… yeah, I go along with no legislation, no pay.

    8:03 pm | July 20, 2011
    • Paul Smith

      Bonnie, two good ones, but one spectacular in “The Letter”. Fine cast, fine writing, haunting locales, mysterious locals, and Betty handling a fire arm as a force as she backed out of the front door pumping her victim, eyes ablaze under the great Willie Wyler’s direction.

      1:08 am | July 21, 2011
      • Mr. Wow

        Dear Paul…

        I knew it!  I knew if I was patient we’d find something in common.  Ah, “The Letter!”  What a movie, what a woman.  The convention of the time–and the Movie Code–demanded that Bette pay the ultimate price at the end.  But I don’t believe that’s how the Somerset Maugham story ended. 

        “With all my heart, I still love the man I killed!” 
        You’ve got good taste Paul.  I’m sure you  were already sure of it, in your distaste for me, but now you have my blessing. 

        Have a good summer.

        11:05 am | July 21, 2011
      • Bonnie O

        And Paul that shooting incident in The Letter was the opening scene!  Absolutely riveting, I agree.

        3:11 pm | July 21, 2011
  • Deeliteful

    Oh, RE: TV (as I scroll thru the Cable Guide), I am becoming addicted to many of the “reality” shows on TLC and A&E. I mindlessly (and often times in horror) watch these programs. They are like coming upon a train wreck – I want to know what happened, but I’m ashamed to admit it. Fortunately I can channel surf and play on my computer :) )

    8:07 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Mr. Wow

    Dear Deelieful…

    It’s the true crime shows that have suddenly captured me.  I’d pitch myself over a cliff if it ever came to the Kardashians or Jersey Show or Bridezillas. 

    BUT…I never say never. 

    I am a weak-minded guy.

    9:16 pm | July 20, 2011
  • Daniel Sugar

    “Bill’s thirty-two. He looks thirty-two. He looked it five years ago, he’ll look it twenty years from now. I hate men.”

    Mr. Wow,
    May I recommend “The Crimson Petal and The White” by Michel Faber. (It’s about a prostitute named Sugar in Victorian England. I couldn’t put it down.)

    9:28 pm | July 20, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Daniel…

      “Obviously, you’re not a woman.” 

      “I’ve known that for some time.” 

      “Well, I am.”

      I’ll say.”

      “Don’t be condescending.” 

      “Let’s get a drink.”

      “Well, I admit I’ve seen better days, but I’m still not to be had for the price of  a cocktail, like  a salted peanut!” 

      Thanks, Daniel,  for the book recommendations. 


      9:41 pm | July 20, 2011
      • Daniel Sugar

        “The little witch must have sent out Indian runners, snatching critics out of bars and steam rooms and museums, or wherever they holed up. Well, she won’t get away with it, nor will Addison De Witt and his poison pen. If Equity or my lawyer can’t or won’t do anything about it, I shall personally stuff that pathetic little lost lamb down Mr. De Witt’s ugly throat.”

        Yes, the heroine’s name happens to be Sugar. The BBC just filmed it and it’s just…too good! (Gillian Anderson plays Mrs. Castaway, the owner of the brothel – you won’t even recognize her.)

        9:57 pm | July 20, 2011
        • Mr. Wow

          Dear Daniel…

          I loved Gillian in “House of Mirth.”  And I hardly recognized her there!

          9:55 pm | July 21, 2011
  • Miss Lee

    The first year I lived in Vegas, I did pool time.  I was 32, divorced, natural blond, blue eyes and built like a Barbie doll so I had a fun time by the pool.  I got a rather bad sunburn on my arms and was peeling when I went to see my doctor for the first time.  She looked at my arms and asked where my people were from.  I said that I was of 100% Norwegian heritage with only one of my grandparents having been born in this country.  Her parents and the rest of my grandparents had just gotten off the boat.  Most of them had lived along or north of the arctic circle.  Dr. Carolyn told me that my skin was designed so efficiently that I could manufacture all the vitamin D I needed by exposing an area the size of a quarter on my cheek for 15 minutes in the midnight sun of the arctic circle.  Any more than that would damage my skin.  So I have not done sun since and seeing some of the folks I knew in Vegas that did, I am glad. 

    10:40 am | July 21, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Miss Lee…

      What charming and rather romantic medical advice–”15 minutes in the midnight sun of the arctic circle.”

      Although I am not Norwegian, nor built like a Barbie (or Ken) doll, I am being careful, in this my first summer in a decade to allow a bit of color to enliven these old cheeks.

      11:11 am | July 21, 2011
  • sandra b

    Mr. WoW,

    What happened to the dessert recipe? Bummer!

    2:10 pm | July 21, 2011
  • Mr. Wow

    Dear Sandra…

    Oh, no…that was just part of headline, indicating that all of this post wasn’t going to be serious.

    I’m sorry for having misled you. 

    I can’t cook, darling.  (Well, maybe a nice pasta sauce–but who can’t do that?)  I do a lot of egg-type things.  Throw everything into a pan with a few eggs and some cheese.  What’s not to like?

    2:43 pm | July 21, 2011
    • sandra b

      Mr. WoW,
      Not the end of the world! I am such a literal person, I never thought it was a cute metaphor. I’ll just make Andy C’s frozen lemonade pie recipe below. Sounds easy, light & cool for summer.


      1:00 pm | July 25, 2011
  • Count Snarkula

    When the Count realized he was into the Thousands of dollars repairing all the sun damage he did in his teens and twenties, it was goodbye to the sun for me. However, through a enterprising friend, I have found a spray-tan company that unlike the awful, orange “Mistic” tans, looks wonderful and natural. The system is called Versa. Once a week I get a “medium” with bronzer added. It quite like being in a car wash. Including the air dry. Nowadays, when queried where did he get his marvelous tan, the Count replies, quite accurately, Palm Beach. Palm Beach being the name of the tanning center. And Mr. Wow, there are laser procedures that take all those spots off ones body parts, including hands. They are expensive, and they are painful. Please do not ask the Count how he knows this.

    3:49 pm | July 21, 2011
    • Richard Bassett

                     “Please, my dear Count. The bronzer is merely make up and it is supposed to be used in conjunction with a real light tan (either from the sun or other UVB lights). Usually, someone tanned through UVB (or the sun) gets a spray on tan to look ‘better’ throughout the evening. They don’t look so red.  Here, it a called a Mystic Tan .Without any color that you may have to begin with (pale), you will turn orange and it is almost impossible to scrub off. You can buy similar producst in the Cosmetic Section in any drug store. It is meant to mix with the natural red (of a sunburn) or just facial make up, like a base that won’t easily rub off. Women tend to use this opposed to men because women typical have less clothes on their body (even all made up) and sweat less than a man. And, as a man, forget dancing with a ligh coloredt shirt on because the tan loves fabric (It rubs off) And wearing white, while dancing…is social suicide. It, also, cummulates on your body so it must be done rather often. But your playing with fabric, make-up, and heat. Wearing it to the beach would defeat the purpose. 
                                                                       It would just melt off, because between your skin and the organ protection is a hormone called melatoni which is the only substance that will change the color of your skin on a permanent basis. Melatonin protects the body’s internal organs from the damage of the sun. With body cancer becoming more detectable earlier with our technology, less people are roasting in the sun and those that do, need to get themselves checked by a physican very frequently. In the old days people used baby oil and iodine, which is actually a sun enhancer (as would any clear oil) and medical make up.”

      4:56 pm | July 21, 2011
  • Richard Bassett

    Count, I will ask my team of dermatologists about this “Versa”.

    5:06 pm | July 21, 2011
    • Count Snarkula

      Dear Richard: I know what bronzer is. The Count had somewhat of a theatrical career in Las Vegas from age 17 – 18 until his Father found out about it and showed up with a detective. It was come home and back to college or blow the news on my fake ID and get me fired. But that is another story. The “bronzer” is an element they add to the spray stuff that adds a little sheen. The “tan” does not stain clothes, and lasts a full 7 days. And unlike the “Mistic” or “Mystic” tans that I tried and hated in the past, this one comes out golden rather than orange or red. Of course, it offers no protection, so you must always put on your sun block daily. I would appreciate hearing any feedback your team might have on the Versa system. So kind of you to care.

      6:55 pm | July 21, 2011
      • Richard Bassett

        Dear Count,

                                        The way (and hours) of the dancing that I did certainly put it to the test but it came of from the 1990′s (the suburb years) So I had to settle. The best (and most expensive) you can get is a High Pressured UVA Bed. But you need to have a tan already to profit from it. ) The hights are so ultra brigh,t high pressured unit and the lights were amazing. It was so hot that you needed a small air conditioned tornado to keep you cool. They had lights on both front and bottom now and snaps for the sides. You couldn’t spend no more than thirty minute spend at a time in one )and that was torture. The color that you achieve (using melonin production alone was overwhelming. No sprays or lotions…and you have the same very deep golden color for the next four weeks. More if you got the chance to be at the beach. The unit comes with thousands of warnings and I can see why. Most beds are ”low pressured” beds; aiming for you to come everyday. High pressure beds were just getting popular in LA (and they were very regulated) when I left home to Boston. But a had such a deep tan, it was hard to recognize me (I cheated though). My face never showed up in a photo. Just a dark image where a face should be. No matter what I did, even buying my own High Pressure Facial (much smaller) Unit, I couldn’t keep the dark color. There were too many UVB (burning) rays on the few clear days that we did have and not enough the intensity of UVA (further north than the equator) rays….so now, I am the color of everyone else. I could start from scrach again, but the thought that I going through it at this age is too exhausting. (We’ll investigate Versa)

        8:08 pm | July 21, 2011


      Looks like from your picture that you are constantly tan.  Are you?

      9:33 am | July 22, 2011

        Sorry should have been commeny for Richard

        9:34 am | July 22, 2011
        • Richard Bassett

          Just my face. I just bought a state of the line high pressured facial unit (It also tans the chest), the rest of my body I’ll use the regular sun. It keeps the psoriasis away and cheaper than a tanning salon. I get the regular magnifying medical exams quite frequently.

          6:18 pm | July 22, 2011
  • sandra b

    Hey Mr. wOw – what happened to the summery dessert? Were we supposed to get a recipe?

    11:10 am | July 22, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Sandra…

      Pls see my answer to you above…the headline was misleading.  It simply meant that my entire post was not going to be Obama or Casey Anthony or the evil Mr. Murdoch.  That there would some fun stuff—movies and tanning and books, oh my!

      So sorry.  I love dessert. But other than scooping out and consuming an entire pint of Haagen-Dazs, I am bereft of dessert-making  abilities.

      2:15 pm | July 22, 2011
  • Andy
    Andy C

    Since so many were asking for a summery dessert — here’s a great one:

    one graham pie crust
    1 can frozen pink lemonade (just for the color)
    1 tub of regular (original) size Cool Whip – frozen
    1 can of sweetened condensed milk

    Mix the lemondade, Cool Whip and condensed milk all together in a bowl, pour/mound in pie crust, sprinkle with sliced almonds if you have them (just for aesthetics), freeze……………serve — get ready for raves.

    Sprinkle some flour and stuff on yourself since people really think you worked on this one :)

    11:32 am | July 22, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Thank you, Andy…
      Though it still sounds way too complicated for Mr. Wow.   But I think Sandra will appreciate your suggestion.

      2:18 pm | July 22, 2011
  • Karen Ferguson

    Wow, Mr. Wow, you not only write well –you WATCH well. My favorite movie lines ever — Do you know who I am? I am Addison DeWitt. I am nobody’s fool. And especially not yours.” As for television, I’m afraid I can’t take one more corpse or laugh track after the word wiener. Alas, shortly after Ray Romano’s Men of a Certain Age won its Peabody and Andre Braugher got his Emmy nom, TNT cancelled this compelling, perceptive, thoughtful drama to replace it with a Dallas remake. I hadn’t really thought the lives of three men who are hitting 50 would transect with mine, but how I felt the empathy. So please allow me to say that a growing grassroots effort of people wanting quality programming is fighting to find another network — I’ve “liked” (as have Robert Loggia, Barbara Walters, Patricia Heaton and even AARP– and I hope some readers here will do the same.

    3:43 pm | July 22, 2011
  • Haunted Lady

    Here in SW Mich the worst of the heat is over but the humidity is still high – 94% at the moment (9:00 a.m.). Tanning has been replaced with sweating. Growing up in Southern California, tanning was nearly a religion but I always found it mind-numbingly dull to sit in the sun and bake like a potato. The summer before I left SoCal, I made an effort to get a tan. Never again. I also don’t have the skin damage so many of my contemporaries have so I guess it all worked out for the best.

    I keep missing all the good movies lately. Maybe the schedule will work out a little better in a couple of weeks.

    Here’s another recipe for you:

    Raspberry Blueberry Salad
    1 large raspberry Jello
    1 can blueberry pie filling
    1 can crushed pineapple with juice
    1 1/2 c boiling water
    Stir boiling water into Jello until dissolved.
    Add pie filling and pineapple with juice.
    Pour into 9×12 pan. Refrigerate until set. Top with Cool Whip.

    9:18 am | July 23, 2011
  • Scarlett Ohara
    Scarlett Ohara

    I recently youred the House and the Senate floors…guess how many of our dedicated elected officials were present….. 3….. in the senate…the house was not even in session! this was LAST week. I am was extremely upset by the situation.
    Mr. Wow I have become hooked on Criminal Minds this summer. And I am becoming quite hooked on the new legal show Suits (comes on right after Burn Notice!). Hope all is well and you have ‘survived” the summer.

    12:09 am | July 25, 2011
    • Mr. Wow

      Dear Miss O’Hara…

      I like “Suits,” “Burn Notice” and “Franklin and Bash.”  And I love “Rizzoli & Isles”  (I know Angie Harmon is a hardass conservative but she is one hell of an actress!)   Oh, and “The Closer.” 

      Alas, as I said above, I have also fallen into “true crime’ progams–”ID” and “Cold Case,” etc.  I don’t know why I have, and I don’t know why I feel so bad that I become so wrapped up in the damn things–especially the ones with that lurid over-done narration.  I guess I feel I should always be watching PBS or The History Channel for anything that’s factual.

      All is pretty good with me and I can’t wait for sweater weather.

      12:06 pm | July 25, 2011
      • Mr. Wow, I have never been able to enjoy “Burn Notice,” nor other shows like “Covert Affairs,” “Alias,” and the like. Even James Bond or the “Bourne” movies… sorta fun, BUT… ugh. “The Recruit” seemed to take itself seriously but was way off base. But the absolute worst was “24.” That was entertainment because it was SO far off the mark. Until certain policy wonks became fans, anyway… truly frightening.

        Dad’s career was spent in “that” world, and my own career touched on it from time to time. Enough that I have a pretty good idea of things. And that, unfortunately, sort of wrecks the fun of the fictions for me. I guess I’m one of those unimaginative people who does best by keeping my mindless entertainment completely separate from anything else in my life.

        Oddly, Dad LOVED “Get Smart” with Don Adams. Apparently the goofy stuff that went on was actually a pretty good parody of some of the things he dealt with in real life. He did not have much of a sense of humor, but when he laughed at “Get Smart,” you could bet he was thinking of something real (he never got tired of the Cone of Silence… years later, I learned why).

        3:32 pm | July 25, 2011
      • Richard Bassett

             The only two crime shows I’ll watch:

        1. Law and Order” SVU: (I know it is because of Christpher Meloni….for just being him and Mariska Haegitary   (because she is a good actress.). I’ve been watching the show for 15 years.

        2. Cold Case: I have to watch that one pretty closely but the song (and ghosts) that they show at the end gets me all the time…I cry like a baby.

        7:04 pm | July 25, 2011
        • Oh, I love any of the “Law and Order” shows. I know they often play out the different viewpoints on real-life issues and cases, but I find that interesting and… well, more intelligent than a lot of other TV shows.

          8:06 am | July 26, 2011
  • Scarlett Ohara
    Scarlett Ohara

    I soooo understand the guilt thingy!

    1:54 pm | July 25, 2011
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