Tuesday, November 12, 2013

My Name is Tiffin Girl...and I Watch General Hospital

I know what you're thinking, typical stay at home mom hooked to soap operas eating bon bons while the kids are are fluttering around me, but that is so far from the truth...kind of. 

My covert affair with General Hospital began back in high school. I would come home from school around 2:45 and would always watch the last ten minutes of the show as I waited for reruns of Beverly Hills 90210 to start. It wasn't that I was enthralled by the show, but I did not have cable in my room and so it was that or Inside Edition, and I had yet to adopt E! News as my daily reading, so Hollywood gossip was of no interest to me, thus General Hospital it was. I was never consumed by the show, just kept up with story lines, which wasn't hard by only watching ten minutes a day. And I'm just remembering that on Sundays I would also read the weekly recaps of what was going on, along with other soaps, and I didn't even watch other soaps! I guess my love of reading was that strong that I would read anything?

And then when I went to college I would occasionally catch the show between classes depending on my schedule that semester. I never went out of my way to watch it and by then I definitely wasn't reading any recaps in the newspaper at the advent of the Internet. Since I was intermittently watching it was always exciting to see how relationships changed, who had children, who died and was resurrected and what not. While it was the antithesis of reality shows today, it was filled with much drama and of course I was drawn to it.

Between graduate school and having my first child, I never watched soaps. When the traumatic event of soaps coming to an end occurred it did not phase me. I had no connection to Lucky, Elizabeth and Nicholas anymore, I hardly could recall their names. It wasn't until recently since I've been bored with Bravo and the Housewives franchise that I've found myself flipping over to Soapnet after the kids go to bed that I've appreciated the fact that General Hospital was not cancelled.

At first I was intrigued with how the characters had evolved. Some of these characters were teenagers when I was a teenager and now they've had three children with three different men! Robin, whose boyfriend was dying of AIDS when I first started watching the show, is now a doctor who is married with a child, but was killed but wasn't actually killed and is alive but is not allowed to see her child and her husband is engaged to another woman! And then I got irritated that the actors had changed, how could the original Carly not stick around 15 years later?! She was my favorite on the show! Thankfully, then newest actress can spit out that Carly attitude quite similar to the original.

I know, so typical of soaps, crazy story lines with revolving door actors, and how could I watch? Yet look at reality television! Can you seriously tell me that middle aged individuals arguing over leaked stories to gossip magazines is more sophisticated television? These people are arguing over this garbage in real life, but the Corinthos/Jerome feud is fiction, purely fabricated for viewing pleasure. No lives are demising before us for our own entertainment and hate bashing on the internet for their children to inevitably see, or have already seen!

But don't think the bashing doesn't happen with Soaps either. I was curious about the reference Morgan has repeatedly made about the lie he was keeping from Kiki which was outed by Sonny at their wedding, so I went to Google it and came across the General Hospital Facebook fan page. Wow. Just wow. I cannot believe how immersed people are in this show. The hate spewed across this page regarding story lines, relationships and even the looks of actual actors! (Apparently the new Lulu has not been well accepted.) After going through the comments I've come to the conclusion that people out there really believe they are watching a reality show and think these characters are real! It reminds me of how I was watching the E! True Hollywood Story of Friends and someone came up to Gunther and smacked him with her purse for outing Ross's fling while they "were on a break."  I didn't believe there were people like that out there, but apparently there are!

So while I have found myself interested in the story lines of General Hospital, no I have not become one of those people who watches every episode everyday of the week and goes on message boards to discuss the happenings (I reserve that for RHOBH and Vanderpump Rules). I usually catch about the last ten minutes of two to three episode a week on Soapnet after the kids go to bed. Or if I haven't had time to watch it all week, I'll catch some of the shows on Sunday night when they have the weekly marathon.

And so there you have it folks, I do watch a soap. I have yet to know of another friend that watches a soap, but perhaps they too are in the proverbial soap closet for fear of the stereotype they will be labeled if it becomes known. Already I get the comments of how lucky I am to be a stay at home mom and what do I do with all the time, so I couldn't possibly allow those stereotypes be perpetuated with the fact that I watch a soap opera! But personally, I feel nothing wrong with immersing  myself in a bit of betrayal, scandal and embryo mix up at the end of a day consumed with projectile vomit, Henry Hugglemonster and flying cheerios. A mama's got get her entertainment somewhere beyond Disney Jr.! And so I hang my head up high and represent for the women...and men... out there who love them some soaps!

General Hospital Logo
Inside Edition
Robin and Stone
Lucky and Elizabeth
Morgan and Kiki

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Vanderpump Rules is Back!

And so my Bravo sabbatical has come to an end with the return of my two favorite Bravo shows, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and everyone's favorite professional aspiring somethings (and Jax), Vanderpump Rules! Ok, so I have been watching Top Chef on Bravo with Hubby the last few weeks, but other than that I've had no reason to watch the channel, even Andy and his quaint little nightly talk show has been put to bed because I've just lost interest. But fear not, my love for Beverly Hills and West Hollywood is still going strong! I am a little embarrassed to admit that I enjoy watching a show of 20 somethings trying to make it in Hollywood, but after Kristen's multiple proclamations that she is 30, it made me feel better considering I am just three years older than her! 

While it's a little late, here are my thoughts on Vanderpump Rules's season 2 premiere episode last week...

Katie has turned her hair orange. I had seen instagram photos of her blonde hair, but when her boyfriend, Tom, explains he got in trouble for referring to her hair as orange, I saw it. I hate to say it but it's bad, really bad. And in the interview shots where they do full on close ups the thick, dark eyebrows juxtaposed to the carrot top does not look good. I'm convinced that she did it to separate from Kristen. I often got the two confused last season and I think Scheana even threw that out to them during some concocted fight at the reunion. 

Jen and Justin  had a baby!  A Sur baby! Who are they, you may ask? (Then you aren't a true Pumper, if you have to ask. That doesn't sound good, does it?) If you look at the group shot above, Justin is the one standing above and behind Lisa. And Jen was in quite a few scenes last season, long dark hair, bronze skin, kind of ditzy. Remember? Both Jen and Justin were in the Vegas episode as the back up crew who went skinny dipping.  In last week's episode the Sur baby was premiered at the twinsies's birthday lunch. 
Update (11/11/2013): Correction, thank you Kristen Doute for the tweet, but his name is not Justin, it's Jeremy! 

Jen is the one to the left of Tina

Tom cheated on Kristen? Did Tom just tear a page out of Jax's book or are the writers just that unable to concoct a better cheating story line. Vegas? Bottle service girl? All too familiar. Judging from the previews looks like maybe this girl comes to work at Sur? Contrived by Lisa or producers at Bravo? You decide.

When did Scheana become Queen Bee?  The show quite possibly could be called the Scheana show this season, a far cry from last year's Stassi and Jax show. I'm not a big fan of Scheana and her alleged  pop music career. The entire conflict between her and the others is that no one called her after her six hour oral surgery that everyone thought was a basic root canal. At Kyle's party she confronts Stassi about wanting to get coffee to discuss the lack of sympathy post dental cleaning. Really? Trying hard to keep your spot on the show, huh Scheana?

Did Scheana's fiance start crying? This was by far the funniest part of the episode. (Sorry, dude.) But Scheana's fiance goes to stick up for her (And garner face time) and says something to Katie's boyfriend Schwartz and afterwards he's crying on Scheana's shoulder who is also anxious for more face time so she takes the tearful toddler to the balcony so she can console him but also ask Stassi to come back upstairs to ensure the cameras stay at her party rather than go on with the more important characters of the show. Apparently, Jax's comment about Shay and Schwartz crying over the Notebook really wasn't an attempt at a witty comment in his interview as we see so so many, many reality stars attempt and fail at (It even sent Jill Zarin  packing from RHONYC),  he was spot on. But seriously, homeboy can shed a tear like Ted Mosby at a wedding.

What happened to Kristen's hair? Katie's not the only one who made a bad hair turn.  Usually when you have a break up with a boyfriend or some significant problem in a relationship you start fresh and look cute. Or maybe that's the problem, she needs to drop the cheater so she can look cuter. What is with those bangs? It's darker and it's at an odd length where it doesn't all pull back, but needs to. Maybe a part on the side would be better? Sorry, homegirl. You're a cute, Hollywood looking girl, but this just isn't working. Go back to last year's look. 

Is Lisa the most inept boss imaginable? The number one rule as a boss is to not fraternize with the staff, it's just going to cause problems among the employees and lead to your loss of authority. I understand she's had 26 restaurants but obviously they haven't succeeded considering she only has two left. But why is she so chummy chummy with Scheanna Marie and even speaking bad of Kristen in front of her? And then she throws a joint birthday party with Scheanna and her daughter? Way to stroke one employees ego only to leave her and you hated by the rest of the staff. Looks like Lisa's RHOBH bitch edit is getting transferred over to Vanderpump Rules. Hey, whatever keeps you in front of the cameras!

Do the servers not know how to do their job? I think these "characters" are hired to play the part of a reality show star, because when Kyle came up to the staff at the end of the party and asked about clean up, their facial expressions had a mixture of dumbfounded, appalling and hell no all bound into one jaw dropping look.  And then the dig of the one girl said about how she was going to make her bed just irritated me. Why are you surprised that you have to clean up when providing a catering service? Someone made a comment on whether Kyle had servants to do the clean up. Yeah, that would be you, now clean up. If you aren't really a staff member at Sur, then do your job of acting the part and clean up. 

Overall, I'm a bit worried the show may have hit the sophomore slump. I'm not sure if I was oblivious to it last season, but the faux-acting is just embarrassing to watch. And not in a rubbernecking, I have to see what happens even though it could be bad, but in a it's just bad way. Kind of like last year's Shahs of Sunset, one season was enough, subsequent seasons have just failed to hit the mark and thus I don't watch anymore.

Perhaps I'm getting older and too mature for Bravo shows (Ha!) or maybe reality shows are just getting old since they have turned into reality stars attempting to act? Whatever it is, I think it may be time to bring back talented actors with fictional tales, but in the meantime I'll still watch Vanderpump Rules just in case it doesn't hit that sophomore slump! 


Monday, November 4, 2013

Enough with Halloween Already!

Once your child is aware of a holiday they are like a dog with a bone and will continually gnaw on the holiday that is the bone. So here is how the month of October played out for us:

Last Week of September: Decision that playgroup is having a Halloween party, we're hosting. Announcement that school is having a Harvest Party where kids can wear their costumes, we're bringing the fruit. Yay, party talk with the kids. Yay, party party party.

First Week of October: My parents, brother, Hubby and the kids go to a costume store to search for Halloween costumes. Sweet Pea immediately decides upon her role model, her icon, the Beyonce of all toddlers, Minnie Mouse. And after trying to put on every hat, wig, smock, cape on Bambino, only for them all to be chucked to the side in a fit of rage, a simple Superman t-shirt and shoes are purchased from Target with the plan that I will take the cape off of his 12 month old superman t-shirt and somehow hook it to new shirt. Yay, continued party talk with the kids. Yay, party party party. 

2nd Half of First Week of October: Minnie Mouse costume is worn for 48 hours straight, and after 48 hours three rips appear across the waist, down the side and down the back making the costume look like Cinderella's mice were pulling a fabric Tonya Harding. 

2nd Week of October: After the inability to sew together said costume to be presentable, we are on the hunt for another costume. We search through Target only to see the same flimsy material costumes for $25. And when perusing through the toy section, as we often do for a "fun outing" (fun for who exactly?), we came across a purple dress up dress that is much better quality and only $19.99. Score! Dress is purchased under the guise that it is the Sophia the First costume. Yay, continued party talk with the kids. Yay, party party party.

3rd Week of October: Irritation of Halloween talk and party party talk begins to get to me. Yay slowly evolves into exasperated sigh with a hint of annoyance.

2nd Half of 3rd Week of October: Hint of annoyance changes to full on annoyance and any bad behavior is responded with a threat to cancel Halloween. At one low point "Sophia" dressed is pulled out of the closet which resulted in tears and quick change of behavior. 

4th Week of October: Halloween candy is purchased as well as items for both parties. A friend of mine loans a superman shirt with a cape for Bambino (Note to self: cape from 12 month old shirt will not fit on a 2t), but I then find one at Old Navy that I purchase. Then later in the day at HEB I find a superman shirt with cape for less than half the price so then back to Old Navy to return the original shirt. After showing HEB shirt to Hubby he informs me that it's not the right color. Tough, it was only 7 bucks. Realization has set in that threat of cancellation of Halloween will be short lived and fear sets in.

Halloween Day: Despite the torrential downpours and floods, despite attempting to keep Sweet Pea dry and escorting her with an umbrella to the door of school only to go back and get Bambino with Sweet Pea running behind me in the rain to not be left alone, Halloween was still on. Sweet Pea's party at school was a success. After choking on a pretzel and throwing up all over his HEB superman shirt, Bambino goes to Gymboree in the original no-cape superman shirt. Apparently the cape wasn't the giveaway of what his costume was, his superman attempt was acknowledged by the Gymboree teacher (phew!). At home party was a success as well as the trick or treating with friends. After the friends leave I stay home to clean the house and Hubby takes the kids out for more trick or treating. I optimistically wipe the house clean of Halloween. 

Day After Halloween: 1/2 price merchandise everywhere. Discussion of Halloween on going at home. Minnie Mouse costume worn. I turn on Soapnet to catch my usual ten minutes of General Hospital (No judgement. I'll explain later.) and they are still in Halloween costumes. I am racking my brain for a new threat. 

Monday after Halloween: Minnie Mouse costume worn through the weekend and after school today. My  neighbors still have pumpkins in their yard, I contemplated chucking them through their windows. (I jest, I jest. Or maybe not?) I briefly turn on GH and they are still in Halloween Costumes! (I said, don't judge!)

Ok, I am really done with this holiday. Have I mentioned that Sweet Pea has an ongoing birthday present/party list. Her birthday is at the end of January and the mental list started in September. More leverage for behavioral conditioning?