Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Today I'm going to join 80 percent of my fellow Americans (and a few nice Canadians) and weigh in on American Idol's finale. Thanks to the miracle of DVR - the best $10 a month we spend - I watched the finale this morning and was able to fast forward through the boring parts.

Here's the deal. For the last four or five weeks, I've been wondering what's going on behind the scenes to propel Katharine to the forefront. I mean, she's like the little girl with the little curl right in the middle of her forehead -- when she's good she's very good, but when she's bad she's horrid.

They gave us the answer last night. Thanks to the miracle of DVR, I can confirm it and share it with you. After Kat's second or third song, they scanned the audience and had the words "Katharine's Family and Friends." And who did they show? Tori Spelling WhateverHerNewLastNameIs. That's it! If anyone in Hollywood knows how to pull the strings and pass by people who have gobs and gobs more talent, it's Tori Spelling. Forget the Scientology rumor. Katharine has a Spelling connection, and that's why Simon apologized and Chris was sacrificed and Elliot was edged out. BLAME TORI!

That said, I can only guess that TPTB want this to be a truly forgettable season, and therefore have assigned truly awful songs as the initial releases. What sort of drivel was that?

And finally, I'm going to say something I thought I'd never say. Was that Kellie Pickler in the audience sporting a smart new hairdo? Goodness gracious folks, she looked downright respectable.

My vote goes to Taylor, who makes me smile. I get the feeling he'd be perfectly happy to spend his career singing in bars. I respect people who can do what they love and make a living out of it, and I hope he enjoys a long, fun life of music.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

My husband thinks we shouldn't have ice cream in the house. He's come to this conclusion after talking to his brother-in-law, who is very biased against anything he considers to be junk food.

Here are brother-in-law's arguments:

Ice cream has little redeeming value nutritionally. Sure, you can make the dairy argument, but the kids would be better off drinking milk or eating cheese.

If ice cream is in the house, the kids will eat it. Consequently, mothers will eat it, too. Everyone knows that too much ice cream is not good for mothers, as it tends to force its way directly into the fat cells of our rear ends.

If you really want ice cream, you can always go out and enjoy a scoop at your nearest ice cream parlor. This way, the kids will know that ice cream is not one of the four food groups (good heavens, I just dated myself) and will consider it a treat, something you do sporadically.

I have to say, his argument makes sense. Then I considered other items in our house that fit the above description - items that, when taken in excess, can cause health woes and even (gasp) extra fat around the midsection. I considered those items that are readily available at the corner restaurant or grocery store for an occasional treat. I considered how much better we might all be if those items were limited to special occasions and not an everyday indulgence. After all, wouldn't we be better off if we stuck to healthier alternatives?

So I'm throwing away the beer.

OK, I'm not throwing away the beer. But I'm not throwing away the ice cream until brother-in-law throws away his beer.

Anyone want some ice cream?

Monday, May 01, 2006

Yesterday, we sat in the rain watching 7- and 8-year-olds play soccer. They were having fun, even if moms and dads were huddled under umbrellas dreaming of hot tubs.

But then there was the little girl on the opposing team who never smiled. She was good -- better than almost every other child out there. She ran like a gazelle and figured out the fancy footwork. It wasn't good enough, though. For some reason, Sunday wasn't her game day. It happens to everyone, and you have to shrug it off, right?

Not according to this child's dad. He was on the sidelines, shouting instructions, criticizing her technique, telling her how she needed to try harder and work harder to score those goals. All this for an 8-year-old. He must have given up, as he went to his car during the fourth quarter and waited while his daughter trudged off the field, getting out only to shout at the child some more.

What's going to happen to this sweet kid? Does the dad really think she'll put up with 10 more years of shouting so she can live her dad's dream? What ever happened to letting kids play?