I’ve been a rebel my whole life. It’s just that many people don’t know it. I do a lot of rebelling in my head, or when your head is turned. Some people call this passive-agressive. I call it “style”.
I don’t necessarily rebel against anything that matters, but I have an inherent sense of when things are fair and when they’re not. And since life is mostly not fair, I am annoyed a great deal of the time. I want to make it fair. I’m also secretly certain that if most people would just listen to me, we’d have peace on earth AMEN. But they don’t, which is why we still have all those wars and stuphs.
When I was in junior high, I had this choir instructor that would punish the entire class for a couple of idiots being stupid. We had to stand on the risers ramrod straight for over an hour. This hurts. She also said that since it was such a large class, if we felt sick, we should just go to the bathroom. So when we all got punished, I went to the bathroom. I was a good girl, so no one thought to go check on me. I hung out in the bathroom for the rest of class. Fairness achieved.
I don’t believe the way anyone else around me believes. In the highly conservative state of Texas, part of the illustrious Bible Belt, I am a liberal Democrat agnostic. And probably a commie or a socialist, no one seems to understand which is which but both are bad words to Republicans, so I really don’t care if I’m called those things or not. And though I’ve tried to go to church at various times in my life, I finally stopped because I sensed -wait for it – unfairness. So I quit and now I’m going to hell or something. Most people thought that anyway, so I figured if that was they case, why be miserable in church?
I don’t follow parenting rules. La Leche League, who are not frightening militant wackos at all, believe Breast is Best and Everyone, probably even men, should breastfeed if at all possible. I’m only slightly exaggerating here as transgendered people and women with mastectomies are also made to feel guilty for not attempting breastfeeding. It’s unreal. I was told by many I was essentially a child abuser for giving my children formula. They would have allergies. They would be fat. They would get sick all the time. Their IQs would be low. Because studies say! You know – studies! My kids are brilliant, healthy, have few allergies, and are the skinniest kids I’ve ever seen. I’m gonna call bullshit on that one. If you want to feed your baby that way, I think it’s wonderful and wholeheartedly support you. But lay off of me. Formula feeding moms get a bad rap. That’s not fair. So I don’t like it. I rebel.
Someone once asked me if I just like rebelling for the sake of it. But it’s not true. I can’t help believing the way that I believe. My mother believes I came into this world a liberal feminist, and swears she had little to do with it. When I was in kindergarten, one of my first memories is being cheesed off because the boys got to go out and play while the girls had to sit and cut paper skirts. We were supposed to like that better cause girls. Wrong! My parents have similar religious and political views, but that has little to do with me. There are plenty of things about them I have no desire to imitate.
I see it much the way people who have deep faith see it. I could not feel any other way. I could never, ever vote Republican. I just can’t. And it’s not simple prejudice either. Deep down, I feel like we are supposed to help people less fortunate. I think we need welfare, and food stamps, and affordable health care. Everyone should be able to eat, have shelter, get basic medical care. Everyone.
I know, it’s far out and I’m completely bonkers. Much better to fight about stuff like whether we should say “Happy Holidays” or not. Because you know, if you say that, you’re saying “Screw you, Christmas and your little Santa and baby Jesus too!” Yeah, no. If you say happy holidays – you mean happy holidays – all holidays, including that Christmas one. You know where holiday freaking comes from? Holy – days. ZOMG!
Some might ask, well how to pay for this stuff you want? Easy. We pay with our money. All that money that goes to invisible bridges, congressional salary hikes, excessive military spending, and the one percent who sit in their houses and fill up their barns. Guess what? If Jesus comes tonight, you ain’t takin’ it with you. Guess where this heathen got that? A Bible! Sometimes there’s some pretty cool stuff in there, once you get past the rape and murder and all that.
But can’t we all just get along, Alice? Sure. Once everyone does just what I say, it’s all gonna come up roses. Then I won’t have to rebel anymore. Till then, I’ll continue, even if there’s no point to any of it. Cause I’m Alice. Rebel without a point.
First off, I want you to know I’m not playing Farmville. I am not that big of a loser. It’s called Hay Day, and really, I can quit anytime I want to – I just haven’t wanted to yet. Sadly, this has meant bad things for my little virtual family on a different game I told you about earlier. I haven’t even given them a good slap in ages. I’m pretty sure they’ve run out of food by now. (Click to enlarge pics I took from Google Images, mostly.)
But I can’t worry about that because I have a freaked out farm here. It’s on my Nook, so it’s even worse than only being on Facebook or a game relegated to home. On the plus side, it seems my workplace, built in 1974, is unable to get a decent signal with the Nook. It can get a signal for laptops and my phone, but not this one simple game on my portable device. Not that this is a problem. I’m perfectly okay with it.
But what about my crops? I mean, I’ve got wheat and corn and carrots (all cut with a scythe interestingly enough) and they’re just sitting there waiting. Also, the cows are full of milk (they sit there like overfilled Macy’s Day Parade floats, ready to burst) and the chickens are sitting on giant eggs which is bound to be uncomfortable. Worst of all – the pigs! You harvest bacon from the pigs, but you don’t kill them. Nope. Once they’re ready (they will be lying on their bloated stomachs in misery) you slide them through this tube that gives them liposuction resulting in bacon. Then you feed them and it starts all over again. I don’t think I’d want to eat this bacon.
Stuff occurs in real time in this game, but the time it takes varies and makes no logical sense. You can get an egg from a chicken every few minutes, and milk from the cow every couple hours, but it takes like five hours to make corn bread and an entire day to make bacon and eggs. I’m not the best cook, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t take that long to make these things in real life. WTF.
You get money for selling stuff in this game. You can sell to pretend people, or apparently real people some of whom have names spelled in Chinese characters. One person I accidentally friended is named Hand. I’m not sure how to unfriend this person now. I just don’t think you can have a friendship based on a love of pretend produce. What’s interesting is visiting the pretend farms of these people. Maybe I should say pretend metropolises. Holy crap! These guys have acres and acres of crops, machines, animals, goat statues (really), and more. I’m not sure whether to be impressed or really, really scared.
It takes a long time to get anywhere on this game, but Facebook and Google Play in their all-knowing wisdom have an answer! You can pay real money for pretend diamonds to buy pretend products for your pretend farm in this free game. It’s genius! Now I’m way too cheap to ever, ever pay a dime for something that is supposed to be free, so I’m not too far gone yet. But it’s still sneaky as heck, isn’t it? And people pay for it or they wouldn’t keep advertising. Far out. Maybe I should just beg one of those other players.
So my virtual family is dying and wondering where I’ve gone, but at least I can say I haven’t ignored my real family. The kids are playing right along with me and I’m sure my husband is back there somewhere watching people dig stuff out of various garages or whatever on TV. And the kids, unlike my pretend animals, can feed themselves! So all is well. Unless you’re a tiny virtual person. Then I’m sorry.
So Black Friday is over. Oh yeah, and that other day too, the one with all the food. We had our Thanksgiving dinner, just my family and my parents. Oh, and our dining coordinator, Thing Two. Every event is a massive event with my nine-year-old daughter, no matter the holiday or the number of people involved. Sometimes it’s not even people, but a stuffed dog, a Barbie modeling Kleenex, or Darth Vadar.
She set the table for us with paper cups and plates festooned with cute turkeys. I’ve never figured out why they make the turkeys cute. I mean, they are seriously ugly birds, which makes eating them easier. So why cuten them up? That’s just cruel. Anyway, she set the table with paper (we are seriously classy here) and marked our names on all the tiny cups. Because with six people, it’s possible we could get mixed up. Actually, considering my family, that’s not such a bad idea. She added “Papa the Awesome” to my father’s cup. He tends to spoil her with lots of stuff. She’s no dummy. To finish it off, she placed Sonic mints at each of our plates. Sadly, she still did not receive a tip, but she made up for that in rolls. I’m not sure how many she had when my back was turned. It might have been ten.
Thing Two also made menus for us – with a line drawn across to indicate whether each food on the menu was awesome or not. And she fixed up the Happy Thanksgiving message on the banner. She marked out “happy” and replaced it with “merry” on the theory that if people think it’s Christmas at first, they might be tricked into recognizing Thanksgiving. We’re pretty sure she’s either going to be a teacher or a politician.
None of the stores thought of this trick, so most people went with the theory that Thanksgiving was just that quick meal you shove down before shopping. As George W. Bush would say, “Ask not what your country can do for you, go shopping.” I actually did brave Wal-Mart a couple of hours after the Thanksgiving specials started, mostly because my husband and kids were watching “Pumpkin Chunkin’” which is a show where grown people create trebuchets just like in medieval times, only they’re hurling pumpkins instead of fire bombs or rotting corpses. But sometimes they just use good old American guns. As enlightening as that sounds, I decided shopping was actually better.
By the time I got there, most of the hordes had already dispersed, though there were still plenty of people milling about mooing at the merchandise. It was like if they blocked my way and stared at a box of toys long enough, whatever they were looking for would suddenly jump out and land in their arms. If they were looking for anything at all. It was hard to tell. With the depressing, hypnotizing Christmas tunes in the background (“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” – I hate that song) I started to forget what I was looking for pretty soon, and after a while found myself mooing along with the others, picking up cheap pajamas, only to randomly drop them off somewhere else because I didn’t have the money and knew nobody that size. I’m sure the Wal-Mart employees were grateful for that little Easter egg hunt I left them. Just trying to keep you guys sharp. You’re welcome, retail employees. Please don’t egg my house. Moo.
I paid for my items, which somehow totaled up to a large number, even though they were, hello, on sale. I tried to figure this out with what was left of my brain, gave up, and went home. My husband thinks I spend too much on my children. That’s not true. I spend too much on myself. It just so happens I let them play with the toys.
The next day, there were leftovers at my parents’ house. One could say I invited myself over, just in case they were left with too much food. I’d hate for them to resort to the “flaming turkey wings” recipe in the days to come. No, I didn’t cook myself. If I had, our Thanksgiving dinner would have consisted of chicken nuggets and mac n’ cheese. This would have been fine with Thing One who eats roughly nine different food items, but not most people. If the time comes for me to host a dinner, we’re getting a pre-cooked turkey. I think that is safest.
So now it’s all over – except wait, it’s Cyber Monday. What am I doing writing a blog post? I must stare at merchandise on the computer screen now! Hope your Thanksgiving was all that. Tell me about it in the comments, if you’re not busy staring at amazon.com.
Note: I was gonna put this up on actual Thanksgiving, like I do with most holidays, then I remembered you would all be drugged out on tryptophan or dodging death at the stores. So here it is one day early!
I wasn’t sure if I could top last year’s festive Thanksgiving post in which I managed to mention tin foil turkeys, capitalism, and smallpox infected blankets all in one post. I told the story of the first Thanksgiving, which I’m sure is totally true and stuff, so now I’ve got to think of something different to talk about but it’s Thanksgiving and let’s face it, no one really cares about that holiday. Except that we get time off and good food but then we pay for it with having to see our families.
Well most people get time off, but not those in retail! Nopes, that’s because there is a much, much more important holiday than Thanksgiving known as Black Friday. It used to be on Friday, but people went insane, camping in front of stores for days on end, getting into fights, and just generally running amok all over the stores like they’d suddenly morphed into chimps high on crack. So they moved it up to Thursday. And now people camp outside, get into fights, and run amok (I like that word) like chimps on actual Thanksgiving instead of the Friday right after at two A.M.
Notice you never see decorations for Thanksgiving but you DO see Christmas stuff just as soon as Halloween is over? That’s because Black Friday is actually the first day of Christmas. Kind of like how Good Friday comes right before Easter, only it’s something evil rising this time. I know you thought there were only twelve days, but you’re wrong. There’s like up to six weeks of Christmas. Joy, joy, joy! I’m so THANKFUL.
Back when they had Black Friday on an actual Friday, I went with my friend L and her father in order to have the true Black Friday experience. We stood in line in the cold early Friday morning, waiting for Target to open because there was something we wanted that was cheap and because we were out of our minds. They opened the doors and kapow, people shot through the gates like racehorses. One guy actually leaped over a couple of carts, and some jerk cut in front of us which was pretty brave considering L’s father is like 8 feet tall. Fortunately, no one was trampled this time because then we would have had to cut our shopping trip short, like those poor people in Wal-Mart after that employee was killed. (Click to enlarge)
Only on Black Friday can you hear “Ronald, there’s a fight in electronics, please come.” on the loud speaker. I missed the fight, but apparently it was over a camera. We got our crap and then got into another line, this one wrapping around the inside of the store. L’s dad isn’t the patient type, so he wandered around and found the jewelry counter with no waiting. He called L’s cell phone and we hurried over to the jewelry counter and checked out lickety-split! Then L’s dad announced loudly “Hey, no waiting at jewelry!” The employees gave us the death stare, and we made the good decision to run.
You might be wondering what kind of stuff would be worth putting up with Black Friday or Thursday or whatever you want to call it. Well look no further, because I have a list of some of the hottest items for Christmas this year.
In case you didn’t recognize this freakish electronic thing, it’s a Furby. They were big years ago but then died out but guess what? They’re back! The description reads “A whole new generation of Furby critters is about to hatch! Collect virtual eggs, hatch furblings. Get yours in time for Christmas 2013!” Eggs? Hatching? Furblings? Be afraid.
Maybe try Legos. Those seem innocent enough.
This Lego set is called Lego City Police Museum Break-in. Because it’s never to early to teach your children a life of crime! Granted you’re supposed to have the cops capture the robbers, but I know I’d totally have the robbers getting away, because that’s just the kind of gal I am.
But Legos require some imagination, and let’s face it, that crap is highly overrated. Try this instead.
For all the children who are into electronic gaming, we have the latest whatever it is! This system allows you to play all the best games like Call of Heavy Duty Theft Killzone. In order to satisfy demand, stores will issue exactly six of these each.
For the professional in your life – even if we’re talking professional couch potato – look no further than Apple.
At last we’re getting into what adults will like (because we know adults never play video games). At least, I hope that only adults have a phone that costs over 600 dollars. But it’s totally worth it, cause this phone can do everything from file your taxes to raise the dead. There is nothing Apple can’t do – and charge ten prices for!
But maybe you’re stumped about a gift for a lady in your life. Look no further than amazon for this treasure!
What I love about this is that not only is it an apron – cause what woman wouldn’t want a reminder of the need for cooking in a Christmas gift? – but also gives her the body her husband has always coveted in this busty, scantily clad super heroine. I searched “gifts for women” on amazon, and honest to goodness this was one of the first things to come up. Awesome.
So enjoy your turkey and stuffing, then lace up your shoes and prepare for battle! Or you could suggest to your family that everyone just give each other the gift of LOVE this Christmas. Either way, be prepared to run.
Ah Peter Pan. I’ve a lot more fairy tale characters to go, but thus far I can safely say that I find him the most irritating little freak of them all. For once, we do have a male lead, well, sort of. He wears green tights and a feathered hat and flies around and is traditionally played by young women on stage, so you be the judge. They even coined a pop psychology syndrome after him – Peter Pan Syndrome. For men who won’t grow up. Frankly, the only way I like Peter Pan is on my sandwich.
Most people know the story of Peter Pan. He decided not to grow up and so flew off to Never-Never Land. He finds a bunch of other “lost boys” – all dressed up as various animals for some reason (I really don’t want to know) and decides that they need a mother. Next thing ya know, he’s breaking and entering the nursery of the Darling children (that’s their actual name) where he finds Wendy and her two little brothers. For some reason, Wendy is still in the nursery even though she’s like, 12 or so, though it’s hard to tell with British children. They act and sound much more grown up than your average adult in America, which is why we are so fascinated with you Brits.
He encourages them all to fly away with him to Never-Never Land, and being children, they’re like okay! But how to fly? Well, Peter doesn’t do it all on his own. That’s why he has Tinkerbell and her pixie dust. This is your mama’s Tinkerbell, guys, not your kid’s. She is not the same sweet fairy that’s in all those stupid Disney fairy movies they make now. Nope, Tink is a jealous, vicious, vindictive little harpy, and quite proud of it. She never says a word, but it’s usually easy to tell what she’s thinking.
Without consulting her, Peter shakes the crap out of her so Wendy and the others can fly. Yeah, this treatment’s gonna backfire on him pretty soon. They fly off to Neverland, meet the Lost boys, and Wendy decides to be their mom because this girl is really a 40 year old trapped in a kid’s body.
Not everything is rosy, here, though. There’s Pan’s arch enemy, Captain Hook, and his band of pirates. Oooh, Captain Hook – seriously, he is just so messed up. He’s this adult man who fights an eternal child and loses every single time. Sad. It’s hard to blame him for trying to kill Peter, though, I mean, who wouldn’t? He’s an obnoxious little twerp that flies around taunting everybody. If I were Hook, I’d be making use of that cannon.
Moving on, Tinkerbell is jealous of Wendy, and so gets the lost boys to shoot her out of the sky with a slingshot. Shoot the Wendy bird! Wendy is hit, and falls, and Tink is laughing her tiny butt off over it, until Peter finds her. He banishes her, which I think was a bit harsh. I mean, she only attempted to murder the girl, right? Pfft.
Wendy’s brothers decide to find the island’s “Indians” (I’m sorry Native Americans. We’re morons.) and get captured by their leader “Big Chief” (sigh) who thinks they have kidnapped his daughter, Tiger Lily. Oh, and according to Thing One, they apparently sing a song called “What makes the red man red”. I had blissfully forgotten that part. Oy. Anyway, they plan to burn the boys at the stake. Movie’s starting to look interesting.
Peter takes Wendy to see the mermaids. They’re so sweet too, attempting to drown Wendy and all (this makes two times she’s nearly been killed since getting to this “magical” place). The mermaids are scared off by Hook, who is the one who really kidnapped Tiger Lily. Peter frees her and gets honored by the tribe. The “best white boy” award or something.
Meanwhile, Hook captures Tinkerbell (he caught the tiny fairy, but can’t catch Peter) and tricks her into revealing Pan’s hideout. I doubt he had to do much persuading – that pixie has traitor written all over her. Hook sets a bomb for Peter and then captures the Darling children who are trying to return home with the lost boys, who Mom and Dad will just love adopting. But Peter doesn’t want to grow up, he’s a Toys R Us kid, so he stays. Tick, tick, tick – that’s the sound the alligator who swallowed Hook’s watch and hand makes but also the sound of the ticking time bomb. Come onnnn, come onnnn . . .
Tinkerbell goes and ruins it, grabbing the bomb from Peter just in time so that it explodes on her. Way to save the day after betraying everybody! The fairy somehow survives the boom at point blank range, and Peter flies off to save Wendy and the boys. Wendy is walking the plank when he arrives. This makes THREE times she’s nearly been killed, and she’s only been there like a day. No wonder no one ever grows up in Neverland.
Peter once again humiliates Hook (sad, saaaaad excuse for a pirate) and captures the ship, which he then flies back to the Darling home. Seriously, Darling is the most annoying name. They are darling children living in a darling house, and look it’s the darling cat and arghhh. Peter drops them off and flies away. Let’s hope he stays away. Lock the windows, Wendy, lock ‘em tight.
The original story was written by J.M. Barrie. I haven’t read it, so I can’t say just how similar the cartoon is to the original book, though wikipedia, source of all knowledge, points out that Disney cut out some of the darker parts. WTF? Darker than kidnapping and burning at the stake? Yikes. You’ve gotta love those lighthearted Edwardian tales, eh?
Next up, The Little Bratty Mermaid.
I never thought I’d say this, but I’m almost jealous of all those peeps doing Nanoblowmore. I mean, sure, they are about to lose their minds and have been doing every wacky thing possible for a post, but there’s this definite sense of camaraderie that comes with desperation and/or possible insanity. Plus I’ve gotten to read lots more posts from you guys than usual. At last you are fulfilling your duties to ENTERTAIN ME. Well done.
Which is why, sense November is almost over, I wanted to join in on some of the posts. For one, I’ve seen award posts for the first time in a while. And I got an award! I’m sure this has nothing to do with needing another post either! Well, not in all cases. I actually got this award twice, which is kind of funny, but since it was merbear and twindaddy who gave it to me, I’ll write about it.
I am really proud of this one. Of all the eleventy-billion blogs out there, I am the blog of the year. Woooot! I have beaten everybody else! I am Queen of the Internetz! I am . . . wait . . . how come other people have this thingy? It says Blog of the year, not blogs. I’m beginning to think this might be another chainmail award or something crazy like that! Fortunately, I don’t care.
I’m supposed to nominate more peeps? I can’t take this kind of pressure, you guyz. Besides, I’m still going with the whole I am THE blog of the year, because I am happy in my delusions. Also lazy. But hey, there was another bandwagon people were on lately. Peeps did tarot card readings on this totally legit site and I said this looks ridiculous, ME TOO.
First up, how I feel about myself right now.
The site says “You feel discontent or uneasy and feel a need for a change in your life, a new direction, perhaps even an adventure.” And it’s represented by The Fool. I’m thinkin’ a new direction probably wouldn’t be a good idea if I’ve got this moron fueling my destiny. I’ll pass.
Next card – What I want most at this moment.
No offense, Mr. Death, but I’m not wanting you right now. No death wishes. I would think drawing this card to be a slighly bad omen, sort of like having Cancer as your birth sign (I’m so lucky). But the site says “The cards suggest that what you most want at this time is absolute change, to end what you no longer want and start anew . . . However catastrophic such changes could be, embracing them will only make you grow in wisdom and experience.” Or, you know, die.
Next up, my fears. For some reason, Mr. Happy Death doesn’t appear here. instead we get the Herc.
I like how the dude is riding a lion in this one. That shows strength. Also stupidity. This card says “Whether you are recovering from ill health, a broken marriage or relationship, or challenges at work, you will find the will power to come out on top.” Well, that about covers everything, doesn’t it? I’ve had ill health, problem relationships, and challenges at work, but now I know if I ride a lion, I can be on top. Thanks Tarot!
And now what I have going for me! Yay!
The site says “It’s a time to celebrate with friends and loved ones, perhaps enjoy a well-earned holiday, a time of pleasure and good news around children or the conception or birth of a longed-for baby.” What? Baby. Nooooo. No no no no. Go away angel dude. No babies here. Don’t even think about it.
So what’s going against me when I’ve got sun boy going for me?
According to this, that freaked out card represents “the world.” So “the world” is against me. Awesome. But it adds “As always, fear holds us back and so often leads to missed opportunities. Do not give up or change direction this late in the game just because you have experienced delays – stick with it, have faith and trust the universe, and you will reach the successful conclusion you are wanting.” Whatever that might be. See, we’re always right here at Tarot international!
This guy is called “The Emperor” but he doesn’t look anything like the guy in Star Wars. Which I guess is a good thing. According to this card “Expect success and achievement of your goals, this is a time for fulfillment of your ambitions. If you have placed your trust in your father, husband/partner or a man of significance in your life, they will come up trumps for you.” Thank goodness I have me a man! I have to wonder, though, what this means for straight guys with no dads. Huh.
Well, there you go. I’m thinking maybe the dove candy wrappers might be about as useful, but who knows? I’ll let ya know. In fact, if you’d like me to do a tarot reading for you, complete with necessary sarcastic remarks, I’d be happy to do so. Just ask. I know. That’s why I’m Blog of the Year.
Sleeping Beauty is one of my favorite Disney movies for one main reason: Maleficent. This is one evil fairy you don’t wanna mess around with. She will CUT YOU. Forget to invite her to your baby shower? Expect one death curse on your baby. Also she can turn into a dragon and all sorts of crap when she’s angry. Try not to piss her off.
Sadly, Sleeping Beauty’s parents didn’t get the memo. The good fairies give the baby princess the gifts of Song and Beauty which begs the question – would the girl would have been tone deaf and ugly as a post without the gifts? Who knows? It’s just a good thing they didn’t come up with something silly to give her like, say, intelligence. That’s what beauty is for! Anyway, Maleficent shows up in a ball of fire to liven things up. Check it! And here’s another great power this lady has –the power of extreme sarcasm.
“To show I bear no ill will, I too will bestow a gift on the baby . . .” she coos. Hahaha, SNAP, she slaps a curse on the kid, dooming her to death by spinning wheel on her sixteenth birthday. Oh, the third chubby fairy tries to make it better, by simply dooming her to eternal sleep until true love wakes her up, but the king is having none of this. Like all politicians, he promptly overreacts and burns every spinning wheel in the country. I mean, come on, the fairy said 16th birthday. You could have waited, I’d say, at least 15 years before burning all the spinning wheels and dooming your people to sew every darn thing by hand. Not that it would do any good against a fairy who, considering she has the ability to appear and disappear in fire, probably can make a spinning wheel too.
The three fairies figure this out and come up with a plan to raise the kid alone without use of magic. Again, the kid is an infant at this point. 16th birthday, people. Still, the king and queen are freaked and so let these dimwitted fairies take their only child to be raised in the woods. I can’t forsee any problems with this.
It works for a while, mostly because Maleficent relies on her stupid henchmen to search for the child, and they search every cradle – for the entire 16 years. So hard to find good help these days. I love how she says, “Sixteen years you’ve been looking for a baby . . . .” before completely losing it and zapping the heck out of her minions. I’m not sure what Mal was doing all these years – being freaking awesome I guess. Anyway, she finally gets wise and sends out her crow to look for a pretty girl who can sing.
And said pretty girl – the fairies name her Briar Rose – grows up trapped in a cottage with three irritating old women. She has no one else to talk to but forest animals, so it is kind of hard to blame her when the first man shows up and she falls for him right away. I think I would too at that point. Like the prince in Snow White, he’s first attracted by her singing. This movie does have some of the best songs – partly because they are words put to the original music from the ballet. Anyway, she’s singing about meeting this hottie in her dreams and boom, real hottie shows up. He has a name too – Phillip – and shock of all shocks, a bit of a personality too! Big steps here, Disney.
Anyway, she doesn’t realize he’s the prince she was originally promised to as an infant (I love the scene where five year old Phillip looks down at his future bride and makes a disgusted face). And he, like her, thinks she’s a peasant. Mistaken identity for the win! It’s pretty much the only thing taking the girl away from her parents all this time has accomplished, since the fairies, eager to make a halfway decent cake and dress for her birthday, start using magic. Not sure how they’ve been sewing and cooking all this time, but whatever. It quickly devolves into two of them shooting the crap out of each other with wands, which the crow notices while flying overhead. Brilliant.
In between, while waiting for the princess, there’s a great scene where the two kings get falling down drunk. I’d love to see that happen in one of their movies today. But drinking is wrong! Except when it’s funny!
Anyway, Phillip informs his father that he’s marrying hot peasant babe (great quote: “Come on, father, it’s the 14th century – times are changing!), and Rose gets the great surprise that hey, we’ve been lying to you all this time, and now that you’ve finally met someone, you get to go be a princess and marry some prince you don’t know! Happy birthday! After this a series of mishaps happen resulting in Phillip getting captured by Maleficent and Rose (or Princess Aurora, whatevs) getting possessed and touching a – wait for it – magic spinning wheel created by evil fairy magic. Dun dun dummmm!
Well, now that the good fairies have managed to royally screw up EVERYTHING, they try to fix it. Since the princess is asleep, why not put all the rest of the castle asleep, you know, to spare the king and queen any suffering (and spare their own behinds, I wager.) This is just one example of hero has misfortune, the entire staff has misfortune. They finally figure out the mixup and go rescue Phillip from prison and give him a shiny sword and shield. So he rides off to the castle but wait, Maleficent ain’t goin’ down easy. She puts up thorns, then turns into a freaking dragon “Prepare to face ME and all the powers of HELL!” Whoa. I don’t know about Phillip, but I’d be wettin’ ‘em.
I like the Disney version better than the original fairy tale. At least in this one, she’s only asleep a short time, and she’s woken up by someone who knows she’s under a spell and who she’s actually met before. In the original, the princess and the castle are all asleep for 100 years, which means when the prince finally gets there, she’s woken up by a stranger (again kissing what for all he knows is a dead girl) in a completely different universe. Think falling asleep in 1913 and waking up today. Yeah, slight culture shock there. That would have to totally suck.
So Phillip kills the dragon, and goes upstairs to wake the princess. Of course she looks perfect in sleep, holding a rose, her beautiful, perfectly styled blond locks (very peasant like!) laying across the pillow just so. Yeah, that’s a natural sleep position. I think it would have added a nice touch if the princess were snoring and drooling into her pillow. Oh well. Phillip kisses her and she wakes up. Next thing you know, they’re downstairs dancing around the ballroom. The stupid fairies continue to change her dress from pink to blue because some people NEVER LEARN. I find it amazing how the peasant girl instantly knows how to dance in court (did the birds and racoons teach her?), but whatever. The only disappointing thing is that Maleficent has to die (by the sword and Disney plummet death). She was totally the most interesting character.
I’m not sure what the thing is with fairy tales and incapacitating women. It’s looking like a bit of a trend here. Maybe they figure if women are asleep, they’re more likely not to notice all the crap the men are doing. I know that’s why I like napping today. What do you think?
Stay tuned next time for the original “failure to launch” Peter freakin’ Pan.
Cinderella, Cinderella, do the laundry, do the dishes, yadda yadda. I’m sure quite a few children pictured themselves Cinderella at some point. Of course, then these little girls grow up and they really DO have to do all the work, while children cry “Mommy, Mommy” instead of Cinderella and Prince Charming hides under his car.
But I digress. The story of Cinderella begins much the same way as Snow White. Mom promptly drops dead of “Disney and/or fairy tales in general hate mom syndrome.” Cinderella is left with dumb Dad, who once again gets her an evil stepmother and then drops dead. Thanks, Dad. This time, it’s worse, though, because Cinderella also gets two mean stepsisters to go with the mean stepmother. Instant dysfunctional family!
And like Snow White, Cinderella is made a servant in her own home. Only difference is she’s some sort of nobility instead of a princess. And she likes to sit by the cinders in the fireplace, so they call her “Cinder-ella.” Good thing she didn’t like sitting by the cow chips.
Cinderella puts up with the abuse with a happy smile, just like all women should. She sings while she cleans (Wtf with the singing while you clean? I never once was tempted to sing while I cleaned.) Also, she has help with her work. From the vermin. Yes, that’s right, even the disease infested rats love Cinderella. She feeds them and protects them from Lucifer (uh huh) the cat and knits them tiny clothes in all her spare time, and in return they keep her company. Reminds me a little of that show “Infested”.
So her miserable life goes on, with stepmom and stepsisters (who the story points out are ugly, which automatically equals evil in fairy tale logic) loading chores on her while they lay around being ugly and whatnot. Until one day they get this invitation to the prince’s ball. He’s bride shopping, and any girl who shows up gets a chance at the bidding block. Woot! Stepmother decides that her daughters are going to attract the prince, because she’s somewhat delusional. We’re talking an episode of “The Bachelor” here, not “Beauty and the Beast.”
Cinderella wants to go too, and so stepmom says that sure she can go, as long as she finds herself suitable clothes and finishes the impossible list of chores she gives her. What a saint. So Cinderella cleans and cleans. The vermin realize she’s never gonna get her chores done, so after wasting time singing a song about how mean everyone is to her “Cinderelly, Cinderelly” (oh how I hate that song) they get down to business and together they fix up this old dress for her with cast offs the stepsisters toss down.
Now I hate mice, but if I found some that could sing and sew, I would say “Heck with you stepmom, I’m goin’ on the road.” She could have made a bloomin’ fortune! Oh, well. Cinderella is sooo happy when she gets back and realizes the dress is all ready. She puts it on and rushes to join her stepfamily. They promptly rip her dress to shreds when they realize part of her dress once belonged to them. At this point, you’re beginning to think these guys might not be very nice people.
Heck, even Cinderella has finally figured this out, and breaks down and cries in the garden. But never fear, her fairy godmother appears out of nowhere and gives her a heart attack. She’s there to help the girl go to the ball! So now we’re in an episode of “What not to Wear” combined with “Pimp my Car” and “Say Yes to the Dress.” This is one big freaking reality show.
If I were Cinderella, I might be asking why this lady didn’t show up like ten years ago when all this mess started. But better late than never, I guess. She creates a coach out of a pumpkin, and makes the mice and dog into horses and coachmen (talk about identity crisis) and then makes Cinderella a brand new dress complete with glass slippers. Wow, talk about – freaking uncomfortable. In case you didn’t know, many believe that the glass slippers come from a mistranslation of the original and Cinderella was supposed to be wearing fur slippers. But what woman would wear fur when she could destroy her feet with breakable high heels, huh?
She gets to the ball, with the warning that the magic will end at midnight STAT. The prince sees her, and BAM instant love connection. He’s found his bachelorette. They dance and forget the time and then Cinderella realizes and runs away so he won’t know that she really wears rags and drives a pumpkin. Good choice, there. On the way, she loses a slipper (plot point!). The other slipper stays in her pocket. So she got to keep the most uncomfortable part of the magic. Thanks, FG!
The prince finds the slipper, but no girl. Word gets out that the prince will marry the girl whose foot fits the slipper. So he’s betting on there being only one size 0 in the entire kingdom. What if some other girl wore the same size? Then what? Would they put them in a line up and see if Prince Genius can remember which one he danced with?
Honestly, I’m pretty sure Cinderella’s prince gets the prize for most useless. He’s not even given a name, unless he really is named “Charming” which is the lamest name ever. It’s his father who, unlike the prince, is short and dumpy and freaky looking, who gets all the screen time. He wants grandchildren, so he’s ready to force his son into picking a wife right away. No word from what the son thinks about all this. Eh, who cares. In this story, the prince is not the rescuer but the prize! He’s so pretty, and look at all the ways you can pose him, Cindy!
A lackey is sent around with the enviable task of trying shoes on millions of stinky women’s feet. Joy. The stepmother figures out it is Cinderella the prince is looking for, and locks her up in her room when the shoe guys show up. The stepsisters try on the shoes, but they don’t fit. True fact: In the original fairy tale, the stepsisters are so eager to fit into the shoes, they actually chop their toes off. No lie. I’m guessing the shoe guys noticed all the blood building up in the shoes, because it didn’t work. Later, birds come and peck out the eyes of the sisters. Cinderella’s like “see ya suckers” and takes off with the prince. I like that version, personally.
In the Disney version, we can’t have blood or any of that fun violence, so the mice get the key and free Cinderella. The stepmother destroys the glass slipper, but Cinderella has the other one. That right there pretty much proves who she is, but they try the shoe on anyway, it fits, and Cinderella has won her man. It pays to have size 0 feet, ladies.
So Cinderella marries the prince, and lives happily ever after with trophy man and creepy grandpa who I can only assume sits outside their bedroom until word of an impending grandchild arrives. Oh, and the mice apparently come along and infest the castle, probably infecting the entire populace with the plague, but it was good while it lasted.
Next up, everyone’s favorite narcoleptic, Sleeping Beauty.
Our first princess is Snow White. This was Disney’s first feature-length fairy tale movie. Like most Disney films, characters would break out into song at random times. Who doesn’t remember “Some day my prince will come.”, “Whistle while you work.” (this one sort of breaks the princess code), or “Hi-ho.” The dwarfs definitely got more of a role in Disney’s movie, with each dwarf being given a respectful name regarding some personality quirk. Sleepy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Bashful, Dopey, Doc. I’m not sure what the Doc one meant. And I forget the seventh one at the moment – Stinky? I’m just glad most of us aren’t given names in that matter. Pretty sure I’d be “Lazy”.
Now Snow suffers from some of the themes I mentioned last time. Her mom dies right after giving her that pretentious name, and stupid dad decides to marry again. Keeping in mind that he has a kingdom to run and a young daughter to raise, he seeks a queen using the best prerequisites ever. Is she a hottie? Yes. Hurray, welcome to the family! Oops, time to die. And as soon as he’s toast (it was natural causes right?) stepmother reveals her true colors, which are black, black, and black.
So right off the bat, we’ve got the princess affected by parents who were kind of stupid and now dead, and a stepmother who is alive and evil. But Snow White is beautiful and sweet and innocent (cough, dumb). The evil queen has her priorities straight. She must be the most beautiful woman in the land. I wouldn’t think that too hard, since as far as I can tell, she’s one of the only women in the land. You never see any other subjects, with the exception of the dwarfs and the huntsman. It would also have to make ruling much easier.
So she talks to this mirror all the time, and the mirror talks back. Schizophrenia? No, silly, it’s magic. She could probably ask it anything, but only asks it if she is still top model. This has to be boring as heck for the mirror, which is why he finally says “Nope, it ain’t you, sweetheart, it’s the kid.” I can’t think of any other reason why Snow White was not the fairest one day and then the next day suddenly was the fairest.
So this is bad news for Snow. The queen decides to destroy her beauty by – gasp – making her do chores. But this doesn’t work, because Snow just goes out and happily mops the concrete while singing. Not only that, her singing attracts some prince who was out wandering around and of course immediately falls in love with her. I find this a little creepy, since in the Disney version she looks about twelve while the prince looks more like 22 or so. But anyway, they sing and Snow acts all scared and he leaves and the queen gets really cheesed off and decides Snow White must die.
She doesn’t do it herself, though, which is the downfall of every villain. Instead she sends her wimpy huntsman with the simple task of cutting out the heart of a child and bringing it back to her. Easy peasy. He fails cause she’s just so gosh darn cute, and tells her to run away into the scary forest where she can die slowly. She does, has a major panic attack thinking the trees are out to get her, and then passes out. When she wakes, all these animals show up and decide to eat her for dinner. Just kidding. They think she’s cute too, and so lead her to a nice little cottage.
This cottage isn’t abandoned – it’s owned by little children, she thinks. Awww. She takes the liberty of cleaning it for them. I wish Snow would show up at my house. Anyway, the dwarfs, who happen to be actual men though she continues to treat them like children (way to empower little people, Disney) also fall in love with her and let her stay. But the queen realizes Snow’s still alive cause she is still not top model, so she decides, finally, to do the job herself.
She disguises herself as a kindly old lady selling door to door apples. Though she doesn’t quite get the “kindly” part right, because she is seriously disturbing. Snow is stupid, though, and lets her in anyway, and eats some of the apple, and bam, drops dead. Well, not totally dead, just asleep until some true love wakes her up but like that’s gonna happen when she’s buried, right? Well, no, cause the dwarfs can’t bear to shove her in the ground! Instead they make her a glass coffin so they can watch her body decompose in real time. Cool. They chase the queen off a mountain and she falls to a typical Disney plummet death so no one has to see blood.
In the original fairy tale, Snow is even stupider. The queen comes by THREE times to kill her. Once she laces her up too tight and nearly suffocates her, but the dwarfs come by and unlace her. Another time she gives her a poison comb, but the dwarfs remove it. Then she gives her the apple. And she doesn’t wake with a kiss either. Nope, the prince shows up, falls in love with the DEAD BODY and decides to drag it along behind him.
The coffin bumps, and she upchucks the apple and comes back to life. WTF? I mean, first off what was he going to do with the body if she hadn’t woken up? And second, I’m pretty sure if the oxygen is blocked off to your brain that long, you’re gonna be dead even if someone gives you the Heimlich. But still, Snow decides to marry this guy anyway. So maybe she DID lose a lot more oxygen to her brain, which is bad since she didn’t have much to begin with. Oh, well, happily ever after!
But back to the Disney version, which isn’t nearly as disturbing now, is it? The prince shows up, decides to kiss the body (ew) and she wakes up. Yay! He picks her up in his arms and they ride away to his castle, the end. No word on what happens when they get there. Or what happens to the castle where the queen lived. I wonder if the prince has anybody to rule over or if they just sit and twiddle their thumbs as well. And what about the dwarfs? Do they just go back to digging in the mines for gold and rubies which they then – what – eat? What the heck do they do with all that stuff? You’d think the queen would forget Snow White and just steal all the jewels they have buried in the back yard. Priorities, people, priorities.
So one fairy tale down, dozens to go. Stay tuned for Cinderella and The Bachelor.
I’ve always loved fairy tales and princesses. So does Disney. It might surprise you, but the “Disney Princess” line really hasn’t been around that long. It just seems that way. My Thing One, who a few years ago was content enough to let her mother dress her up in pretty, pretty princess costumes, now thinks princesses and pink are yuck. She also thinks all the princesses in the “Disney Princess” line are like replicas of each other. Well, okay, she has a point there. Which is interesting, considering that the actual princesses (some of them aren’t even princesses in their stories) do have personalities in the movies. As Thing One said, “What the heck happened to Jasmine? She was kinda tough before.”
The answer is “marketing”. Little girls like being princesses. People are critical of this and often try to steer their kids away from such sexist notions. But I think it makes just as much sense as little boys wanting to be dinosaurs. Think about it – a princess gets to wear some awesome bling and have other people do all her chores for her. What kid wouldn’t like that gig? Also, just like dinosaurs, princesses probably get to go to bed whenever they darn well please because, well, they’re freaking princesses. I know I would still like to be a princess but my dinosaur husband is too busy stomping around to listen to me.
This is not to say that little girls can’t be dinosaurs (hello Rara!) or little boys princesses. At Thing Two’s fifth birthday party, we tried to give her boy buddy a more manly crown instead of the tiara all the girls got. He cried. So I gave him a tiara. He promptly slapped that thing on and chased the girls around with his magic wand he had transformed into a ray gun. Some things are just kind of ingrained, sorry.
Anyway, what I wanted to address was Disney’s fairy tales. (I got distracted by the princessy shiny things, so sue me!) How bad are they for little kids? Are they any better, or worse, than the original fairy tales themselves? I think a lot of people miss this part. Most fairy tales were originally told as warnings. For instance, in the original Little Red Riding Hood, she’s eaten by the wolf. The end. No kindly woodsman who just happened to be hanging around grandma’s house (which is sorta creeper). Nope, she’s dead. Because if you talk to strange wolves, you get dead. Lesson: Don’t talk to strangers. Sweet dreams, honey.
I loved the Disney fairy tale movies. They had incredible animation, great songs, and beautiful characters and scenery. No one looked like Spongebob and friends. I liked that. Now note I’m talking about the cartoon feature length movies, not the sequels or most of their live action stuff, which almost always sucks. But is this a good thing for kids to watch? Guess what? I’m here to give you my reviews. Keep in mind I also read the entire 50 Shades series, so what I find appropriate might not match what you find appropriate. You never can tell. But I think we’ll have fun.
Now most of these tales have certain themes in common.
Dead Parents: at least one of the parents is six feet under for some reason. Usually the mother. Disney hates mothers.
Bad Parenting: If the parents are alive, they aren’t that great. Either they marry stupidly (see Evil Stepmother Syndrome) or they are abusive, neglectful, or just plain stupid (see the Miller in Rumplestiltskin).
Good vs. Evil: Good is the innocent (ie dumb) princess. Bad is the parent, dragon, etc.
Cute Animal Friends: she’s almost always scarily good with animals who repay her kindness by making her clothes, cleaning her house, and not eating her.
The “Prince”: Either this guy comes in and rescues the princess, or in other cases, is the prize the girl gets for a lifetime of crap.
Happily Ever After: This usually comes in the form of a marriage. Cause everyone knows that marriage solves everything!
I’m sure there are more themes we’ll explore as I get into the stories. If you can think of others, let me know! Stay tuned for our first tale next time: Snow White and all those short guys.