Just a reminder that you can read Between Friends (and catch up on the last month of strips)
by clicking right here on this link to the Toronto Star.
Remember my friend's son who has a band calledThe Bends? They have their first CD available for sale...and they've put up a video on Youtube for their original song, "Kenny Got a Real Job". It's pretty funny. This is a great way to start off your TGIF day...
So...a couple of my friends and I went to see Eat Pray Love last night...
I was to meet them at the movie theatre because I live on one side of the region and they live on the other. As I got closer to the theatre in the mall parking lot, I could see I was going to have a bit of a walk as the parking lot was quite crowded. After all, it was Tuesday and in our neck of the woods, Tuesday is the day of the week that the theatres reduce the cost of a ticket. We didn't choose to go to the movies on Cheap Tuesday Night for that reason, it was just the only night we could all make it.
I try to avoid Cheap Tuesday Night because it's always packed with students. And a movie theatre full of students (bless their fun-lovin', free-wheelin' little hearts) means lots of noise and distractions during the movie. But, we all figured no students would want to see Eat Pray Love because...well, I guess you call it a "Chick Flick".
Back to the parking lot...
I get out of my car and I'm pretty pleased with myself because we were to meet at 6:30 for the 7:00 feature and I'm actually five minutes earlier than 6:30. Plenty of time.
As I'm walking toward the theatre, I notice a woman about my age, dressed in yellow get out of her car and start walking toward the theatre. She's by herself. As I cross to get on the sidewalk, I notice two more women about my age, walking towards the theatre. I glance ahead and notice another woman about my age in the midst of parked cars walking towards the theatre.
Hmmm, I think.
As I get to the theatre steps, I notice a group of three more women...yes - about my age...milling around the doors. I walk through the doors and glance around to see if my two friends have arrived yet. I don't see them...I do see WOMEN ABOUT MY AGE AND THEY ARE FREAKIN' EVERYWHERE.
The line for tickets was unusally short and I hurry over and wonder if I should buy tickets for Marge and Lesley or if they may have already purchased their tickets online. I stand in line behind a woman-about-my-age and keep glancing back towards the entrance, hoping to see my friends before it's my turn to purchase a ticket. There is another woman-about-my-age standing in line behind me. I turn my attention back to the front of the ticket line.
For some reason, I glance at the electronic board above the ticket counter where all the movies that are playing are listed. Something is flashing beside the title, Eat Pray Love.
The seven o'clock is SOLD OUT.
I turn to get out of line. The woman-about-my-age who is standing behind me (who is squinting at the board) says to me:
"Does that say-?"
I answer dejectedly:
We both turn and leave the line.
My friends show up about thirty seconds after this. I tell them the news. The next movie is at ten. We all concur that this is past our bedtime. (If we plan on being able to function the next day, that is)
We decide to go for a drink to a nearby pub. As we sit down to our table, Marge spots another woman she knows who is just finishing dinner with a friend. They are about to leave to go and see the 7 o'clock showing of Eat Pray Love. They bought their tickets online earlier in the day. AND they met for dinner.
Why didn't we think of that? Obviously, we are out of practice and do not get out often enough. Note to self: YOU NEED TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THAT, SANDRA.
So, the downside is that we didn't see the movie. But we will.
The upside is that we got to spend a little one-on-one time together. (Well...there were three of us...does that make it one-on-two time?) And that was fun. So often nowadays, when we get together we are either with families or at our bi-monthly dinner (just the gals) and while it's always great to socialize at these things, the large numbers prevent any kind of intimate conversation.
Having a drink, sharing a spinach dip and shooting the breeze was a great way to spend Cheap Tuesday Night. It's not what we planned but who cares? We laughed all the way out to the parking lot.
I think I'm going to do Twitter. I've been avoiding it like the plague...like the time-sucking plague. But people keep telling me I should be tweeting.
But I'm wondering...do I tweet as Between Friends comic strip or as Sandra Bell-Lundy?
I really like (my comic character) Helen. If she were a real person, she's someone I would want to have as a friend. I like her confidence...in her opinions, in her actions, in the way she deals with her kids. She's not the type of person to let other people walk over her. She has life experience on her side...the kind that makes you grounded. She's strong. She's been around the block, so to speak. I use her character as a person who can talk to Maeve with a sense of authority and directness. She's the voice of reason and common sense.
In Between Friends this week and next, Helen has the starring role. These strips show Helen in a different light...a little vulnerable...a little envious...a little "what's my life all about anyway?" I don't think this is out of character for her though, because her angst is all internal. She doesn't share it with anyone but her husband.
This series originally began as a story line about Maeve. One of my readers e-mailed me and asked if I was going to continue the story line about the man Maeve met through the online dating service. I thought that sounded like a good idea...it seemed like there should be more to the online dating story and Maeve's love life is always fun to write about. Somehow though...my writing just seemed to drift over to Helen.
The story line started on Monday. I'll provide a few links below where you can catch up if you like.
"It's an amazing thing to push yourself and to accomplish a goal... I feel if in your mind you can do it, you can do it. You cannot doubt yourself. Doubt is a killer. You just have to know who you are and what you stand for."
(from Glamour Magazine)
"Doubt is a killer"...truer words were never spoken...
In the pursuit of time off and a hair cut...I managed to get a hair cut. Hair cut and colour. Actually, THREE COLOURS.
Yes...three. My regular base colour with two different colours of highlights. A little soft blonde and a little soft red. It was my daughter's idea. "Do something different", she said. My hairstylist, who is much closer to my daughter's age than mine said, "YES! Let's put some RED in!"
And - shrewd decision-maker that I am, I said, "um...okay".
AND IT LOOKS WUNDERBAR!
I like having a teenaged daughter...it's not as bad as they all say. :)
I am SO going to see "Eat, Pray, Love". I'd love to read the book too. Sometime I will. If you have five minutes, listen to this interview with author, Elizabeth Gilbert.
My favourite comment (by Elizabeth) in this clip: "What do I want do with my one wild and wonderful life?" Boy, did that make me stop and think.
I was hoping to take the first two weeks of August off. That wish turned into the middle two weeks of August...now it's the last week of August and first week of September...or maybe when I retire.
I'm not planning on going anywhere. I'd just like to work on some extra Between Friends stuff without having to work around my regular Between Friends deadline. Yes, you read that correctly. I want to take time off to work.
...and maybe get my hair cut...
Anyway, I'm getting close. Back to work.
(Sent to me from a friend...thanks, Mary Ann, gave me a good laugh!)
Five tips for a woman....
1. It is important that a man helps you around the house and has a job.
2. It is important that a man makes you laugh.
3. It is important to find a man you can count on! And doesn't lie to you.
4. It is important that a man loves you and spoils you.
5. It is important that these four men don't know each other.
John Read, curator of "One Fine Sunday in the Funny Pages" has sent some photos of the first stop for his traveling exhibit of Comic Strip Art. First stop: Northpark Mall, Ridgeland, Mississippi.
(The exhibit of 130 pieces of original comic strip art that appeared in newspapers on April 11, 2010 will next appear in Marceline, Missouri for the Disney Toonfest Festival Sept. 16-18. It will move to the Bemis Center in Omaha, Nebraska in October.)
You (meaning comic strip cartoonists) never know how your cartoons are going to strike people. I've mentioned before how I've written cartoons that I've been . . . ahem . . . not all that happy with and they've generated all kinds of positive response.
I've written cartoons that I thought were very funny and then I've received mail from very angry, hurt readers who identified with the content in a negative way.
The response to the "Real Women" series was positive (except for one e-mail) but not in the "I really liked that strip" kind of way. I'm going to post some snips of mail to show you what I mean.
One thing before I do ... I do appreciate the mail whether it's critical or full of praise. I realize people's perspectives are based on their own personal situations and experiences and most of the readers who take the time to write to me are quite thoughtful and eloquent. Some aren't...but that's okay too.
...please do not take this as an insult because I love love Between Friends. But, women who have had breast cancer and/or panic attacks can not drink caffeine. Just thought you might want to know and maybe do a strip on them.
The decaf strip...the whole series actually... was written with a sense of camaraderie and fun in mind...but I get where this woman is coming from. Breast cancer and panic attacks are serious stuff and the "Real" Woman part is a bit of an unintentional slap in the face. What I loved about this letter was the way she made her point and suggested the alternate cartoon idea.
Thanks for your cartoon on Mammograms. Would you consider doing something for colon screening?
I also coordinate a breast and cervical cancer screening program . . . and I was wondering if it would be possible use your 7/30/2010 strip in our next newsletter
I think it was a good movie. I mean . . . I think it was.
Leonardo DiCaprio as the main character, Dom Cobb, was wonderful as always. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, pictured above with DiCaprio played Arther, Cobb's right-hand man. I'm not familiar with Gordon-Levitt but I found him/his character to be very charismatic and really enjoyed his performance. His character is very composed and dry and there's something about him that's very magnetic. My favourite part of the whole movie was Arthur fighting his adversary and trying to manipulate his friends into the elevator in the level two dream world. (don't ask me to explain what that is...like I said, I couldn't even begin to try) He's trying to function without gravity...the special effects for that scene were incredible.
Tom Berenger was a real treat to see. In fact, I thought the movie was very well cast.
Neither Tim or I could figure out what was going on for the first 20 minutes or so of the movie. I was so clueless, the thought of walking out crossed my mind. I think I might have if I didn't like Leonardo so much. Things begin to make sense...sort of, kinda...after that, but then you wish you could rewind to the beginning again just to make sure.
Frankly, even though we got the basic premise...the whole thing was just too darn complicated to follow. Watching Inception isn't mindless entertainment, it's work.
My son asked us how the movie was when we got home. When we told him it was difficult to follow and understand, he told us he'd go and see it and explain it to us. Oh, the arrogance of a sixteen-year-old.
I'm hoping he'll go tonight.
I've read that Inception is a movie that you have to see twice...not because it's good but because you need to see it twice in order to understand it. Now there's a marketing concept for you.
Actually, I'm the kind of person who will gladly pay to see a movie twice if I enjoyed it...but I rankle at the thought of paying twice to see it just to figure out what was going on. Except...I just might go again anyway...because it was a really good movie...I think.
So my son did see Inception last night and he's taking great delight in pointing out all the aspects of the movie I missed or did not "get". I misinterpreted the ending...that's one big one. I was going to go back and see it again but I'm going to wait for the dvd so I can stop it and have Devin explain it to me as we go. Then I'll watch it again by myself. Because I have nothing else to do...
One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman.
-Simone De Beauvoir
(A reader sent me this quote in response to last week's "Real Women" series. I'd never heard of Simone De Beauvoir and I googled her. I'm very interested in her book "The Second Sex" and I'm going to track it down. I'll be looking for the newest translation by Constance Borde and Sheila Malovany-Chevallier. Apparently, De Beauvoir felt the first translated book distorted her intended message.)
By the way . . . about last week's "Real Women" series . . .
- this series was a departure from what I usually do in Between Friends but I thought it was fun. I mentioned in an earlier blog post that I wondered how it would be received because it was so different from my regular format. Would people like it? ..would they hate it? ...would readers be completely indifferent to it?
Well...as usual, I was suprised by the response I received. It wasn't what I expected, but then - it never is. I'll post some snippets of some of the mail regarding this series in the next day or two.