What the #FF?!?: A Site, A Clip, and A Burger

Breathe easy, my friends…it’s Friday!  Because you’ve bravely survived the workweek, fed the kids, paid the bills, shoveled the snow, and listened to Britney Spears’ latest contribution, I’ve got a great What the #FF?!? feature for you today.

A Site

Yesterday, I dove further down the writing rabbit hole and took part in my very first writers’ workshop.  Mama Kat, over at Mama Kat’s Losin’ It, hosts a weekly forum for writers, which offers 4-5 writing prompts for her participants.  Not only is Mama Kat’s workshop an unbelievable contribution to the Blog-O-Sphere, but she runs an awesome website as well.  She’s funny, irreverent, and poignant in her posts…as she is in her photography, cartoons, videos, and letters to Ellen DeGeneres.  Plus, I’m just enthralled with her website design!  It reminds me of a luscious red velvet cupcake, with extra frosting and sprinkles on top.  She’s a blogger I really admire, and I aspire to become just like her someday…if I ever grow up.  She’s got writing chops, hysterical cartoons, elegant poetry, and a welcoming spirit which inspires and provokes great writing.

For her writing challenge, I took the prompt of “10 reasons I could never be friends with______” and waxed about my distaste for my fair-weather acquaintances, snowmen.  You can read the post here!

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A Clip

Ever stumble upon something that simultaneously makes you go “What the?!” and “This is the funniest thing I’ve seen all month”? Jenny Slate, of SNL fame, created a short video clip with her director-boyfriend Dean Fleischer-Camp called “Marcel the Shell with Shoes On.” I really don’t need to say any more.  Just watch the clip, and get your Depends ready.

My favorite part is the lint.

I hang glide on a Dorito.  Go ahead.  You’re already picturing that little peanut sky surfing on a potato chip.  I can only hope and pray that they make more video clips of Marcel.  To learn more about his creation and his creators, click here.

A Burger

Have you ever been so moved by something that it makes you weep with tears of pure joy?  Have you ever known true bliss?  If you have, then I’m sure you’ve tasted a burger from Five Guys Burgers and Fries.

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On Wednesday, I was preparing for yet another rehearsal across town, having eaten no dinner and expecting no meal until at least 10 PM.  My stomach was angry with me, I was cranky, and combustion seemed imminent…until Uncle Lewis brought me an offering from Five Guys.

 

Uncle Lewis:  I brought you a burger and fries

Aunt Bethany:  Great, I’ll eat it after yoga…wh-why are you staring at me like that?

Uncle Lewis:  You’re going to want to eat it now…*drool drool drool*

Aunt Bethany:  Why?  It’s just a burger, right?

 

WRONG!  It is not just a burger, dear friends:  it’s heaven in a wrapper.  When I finally sunk my teeth into my bacon cheeseburger, my mouth exploded with applause, and my stomach bowed down to Uncle Lewis.  Not only that, but they give you massive amounts of french fries (a staple in my diet).  When you open your bag, fries are scattered all over the place, as they’ve placed an extra scoop on top of your entire order.

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CAUTION:  These meals are not for the faint of heart.  They feature a lot of grease, a lot of calories, and a lot of ecstasy.  You have been warned.  They also offer hot dogs and milkshakes.  Find your nearest Five Guys and run, I say, RUN to it.

So, go!  Eat!  Drink!  And be merry!  But whatever you do, have a great weekend!

Me with Burger and Fries

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10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With A Snowman: Plinky Prompts Thursday

This week’s prompt comes straight from Mama Kat, who runs an awesome website over at www.mamakatslosinit.com.  Every Thursday, she hosts a Writer’s Workshop and offers weekly prompts to inspire creativity.  She then asks her readers to stop back at her site, post a link to your prompt-inspired article, and show some “comment love,” as she would call it.  It’s a wonderful contribution to the Blog-O-Sphere, and it has certainly caught on like wildfire.  You’ll be hearing more about Mama Kat later in the week in my What the #FF?!? Friday feature.

So, without further delay, I present to you the original prompt from Mama’s website…

10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With…(fill in the blank)

…AND, my answer….


10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends with A Snowman

10.) I’m all for originality and non-conformity, but I could never be a nudist. Snowmen brazenly stand in public, with nothing but a corn cob pipe and some coal buttons to cover their naughty parts.  At least Frosty sported a hat, but his “igloo” at the “South Pole” was still in plain sight, for all to see.

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Photo from Terry Hart

9.) I refuse to go through any type of plastic surgery, while snowmen deem vegetables to be superior upgrades to their own noses.  Really, if you can’t love who you are, who can you love?

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Photo from Ian Baker

8.) And speaking of loving who you are, snowmen are always losing/gaining weight!  They’re never satisfied of their appearance, and are always struggling to change it.  Sure, I’m all for staying healthy through exercise and proper nutrition, but you don’t need to change your appearance to appease someone!  Come February, they all start to look a little thinner…I say they’re just trying to shape up for bikini season.

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Photo from Cartoon Stock

Keep reading my reasons!

Stick Figure Movie Review: “The King’s Speech”

Welcome to the second installment of the Stick Figure Movie Review.  If you’re just tuning into our regularly scheduled programming, I will occasionally review a movie with the help of a faithful cast of stick figure actors, who are paid in cabbages and smelling salts (don’t worry, they have a great deal with their actor’s union).  Click here for the first installment of this series, which featured the big Oscar contender “Black Swan.”

Without further ado, I present to you the Stick Figure Movie Review of…

THE KING’S SPEECH

Our film tells the story of three fine and upstanding British actors, all who, at one point or another, have appeared in one of the 47 Harry Potter films to date.  Those refusing to appear in these movies will never win Oscars (I’m looking at YOU, Colin Firth…you’re lucky you appeared in Love, Actually).

King's Speech 1

Prince Albert, son of King George V, is cursed with a terrible stammering problem, which subsequently results in tremendous angst, whiny tantrums, and overly furrowed brows.  Tim Burton’s wife finds Prince Albert a speech therapist, Lionel Logue, who happens to be an actor, a pirate, AND Geoffrey Rush, all in one.

King's Speech 2

Prince Albert does not believe Logue can cure him of his speech disorder, but Logue perseveres, claiming he can fix his stammer through the use of expletives, Shakespeare, and Lady Gaga.

King's Speech 3

Click to keep on reading…

Sometimes I Don’t Say I Love You

sometimes

I don’t tell you about

the fear, the hurt, the pain

I lean on silence, which falls in between the

smiling, laughing, hiding


sometimes I don’t say I miss you

you are not mine to miss

too many goodbyes and not enough hellos

are reminders of the uncertainty


sometimes I don’t say I need you

when the storm rages at night

needing is weak, and weakness is vulnerable

and vulnerability is terrifying


sometimes I don’t say anything

letting seconds, minutes, moments slip by

and I fall mute

even though inside, im shouting

and holding on with my heart


sometimes I don’t say I love you

because I fear if I say

it

ill lose you

and never be able to say it again


but, im always saying I love you

in thought, word, and deed

in the moments following

a kiss

a smile

a laugh

a tear

and every moment in between


and the missing, the needing, the wanting, the loving

are there

and everywhere

waiting

and although sometimes I don’t say I love you,

I do.


Welcome to my first foray in poetry, dear readers!  I’ve never been one to wax poetic, as it were, but I’ve been more and more inspired lately to try my hand at writing poems.  I know basically nothing about this fine art, so any advice or ideas would be greatly appreciated! Special thanks to Chase for some last minute edits!

Happy Tuesday, all!  Tune in tomorrow for another round of Stick Figure Movie Review with “The King’s Speech,” starring Geoffrey Rush and Colin Firth!

What the #FF?!?: I’ve got a bad case of the ninjas…

What the Fudgsicle? A “What the #FF?!?” feature on a Monday, you ask?  What gives, Aunt Bethany?  Are you off your rocker?

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Well, honestly…yes!  I am a bit off my rocker…or, at least, have been for the past few days.  A string of unforeseen events forced me off the Internet the past few days, which did not allow me to publish my Friday post, nor read up on all my blog subscriptions.  I won’t bore you with all of the dull, mundane details…but I will try, in one sentence, to summarize the world-turning events which led to my Internet Isolation for the past few days:

Wednesday night, I was alerted to an opening as a long-term sub, so Thursday morning, I filled out a lengthy application, finally watched Family Guy’s “It’s a Trap!”, played for a ballet class, then spent 4 hours at a rehearsal, which left no time for writing but plenty of time to plan my Friday post, which never got written because Friday I was called in to an unplanned job interview, which required me to gather odd and random documents Friday morning, and then I hastily readied myself to look presentable, played for another ballet class, and rushed across town to an informal interview at 2:00, which was followed by me giving a private piano lesson, racing across town (the other way) to a rehearsal, and then to a choral concert that night, which really exhausted me, so I crashed Friday night, got up way too early Saturday morning to complete a physical for my job interview, and gave a voice lesson later that morning, which was THEN followed by a 4 hour rehearsal and  a planned party with former cast mates, which ALSO tired me out, so I crashed until the wee hours of Sunday morning until I had to scurry off for church choir, which kept me out until mid-morning until I had to run home to give another voice lesson, prepare for my afternoon, and run across town (yep, again) for ANOTHER day of rehearsals, which kept me on the go and away from my laptop from 12-9 today, and THAT is why I was late for school…and couldn’t post my Friday article.

So, you see?  I wish I could say that I was kidnapped by a one-armed man with a spatula for a limb, or that I was abducted by crazed Yetis with blow-torches and CDs of Miley Cyrus, but I can’t.  I personally think a Yeti abduction would be thrilling.

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But even Yetis understand the importance of “What the #FF?!?” Friday posts, so they have urged me to continue with mine.  Bless their poor, wild hearts.

Continue reading

How to Be an Outstanding Teacher: Plinky Prompts Thursday

Welcome back to another round of Plinky Prompts Thursday! If you’re just tuning in for the first time, each week I will select a writing prompt from www.plinky.com and post it every Thursday for your viewing pleasure.

This week’s prompt, however, is surprisingly not from Plinky.

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THAT'S not a Plinky Prompt!

Yes, Denny…that’s right.  This week’s prompt is from another source, outside of Plinky.  It’s short, it’s brief, and it’s to the point.  Please don’t keep me from watching reruns of Boston Legal, okay?

I’m currently in the process of applying for substitute teaching jobs in the area.   With any application process, there will inevitably be a few questions which require writing samples from the applicants.  My teaching application is no different.  The paperwork requires three different “essays” to be answered, and I completed one yesterday, just in time for Plinky Prompts Thursday.  So, with no further delay, I present to you…the prompt:


Describe the skills or attributes you believe are necessary to be an outstanding teacher.

In life, when you are passionate about an endeavor, you pursue a course of action which directly leads you closer to that interest. To become a professional in any type of venture, constant practice is required to hone your skills and become a master at your craft. To excel, you must be willing to accept advice and constantly yearn to learn more. One cannot be a source of inspiration to others without experience and true passion.

Teachers, like any other skilled artists, must combine their experiences with passion to foster an outstanding classroom environment. They must serve as eager encyclopedias to their students, willing to share knowledge on a specific content area with enthusiasm and spirit. They must act as optimistic fortune tellers, constantly encouraging students onward to success through realization their own potential.

Educators must also be active practitioners in their field of study. Students are extremely accurate esteem barometers; they offer respect when respect is due. Young mind are more inspired to learn when their instructors exude a professional work ethic, constantly sharpen their skills, and continue to cultivate their talents.

To teach, you must inspire…but to inspire, you must teach with enthusiasm, which is an attribute all outstanding educators must possess. Students thrive off of ardent mentors who embody excitement and zest. Of all the hats a teacher must wear, the role of “inspiration advocate” is one of the most important. You must be willing to proudly share your love of learning with your students, who will undoubtedly recognize a teacher with true passion and devotion for what they do.


Well, what do you think?  I’m very open to suggestions on how to improve my response, since this will be my official “Hi-there-and-hello” to my perspective employers.  What could I add?  What could I subtract?  And should I insert a portfolio of my Stick Figure Movie Reviews along with it?!?  What say you, William Shatner?

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DENNY CRANE!

That’s what I thought you’d say…

Stick Figure Movie Review: “Black Swan”

It’s a new year, and a new blog.  2011 has so far ushered in Plinky Prompts Thursday, What the #FF?!? Friday, and now, a new feature to Miracle on 32nd Street…the Stick Figure Movie Review!

Although these posts will not be day-specific, I hope to incorporate them into my blog as regular features.  I’ll be scoping out the latest and greatest movies to hit the silver screen, and fastidiously analyzing them through the use of an ensemble cast of faithful stick figures (they can be paid embarrassingly low salaries…like banana chips and YooHoo).

As a warning, I will strongly caution all readers about a big Spoiler Alert before each comic strip, as I may hit on key plot points and spoil the ending (unless we’re talking about Titanic, here…the ship will still sink regardless of how far you read).

So, without further Ado-be Acrobat Reader, I present to you…the Stick Figure Movie Review of…

BLACK SWAN

Nina Padme Sayers, an aspiring ballerina, yearns to make it big in the dance world by performing the role of the Swan Queen in Swan Lake.  Her over-protective mother, a former dancer, is just plain nuts..think like Mrs. Bates in Psycho.

Black Swan 1

Nina trains hard, day in and day out, to become the next prima ballerina.  She admires and respects the reigning ballet queen, Beth, who happens to be aging past her prime…and who also happens to be played by Ms. Winona “I Steal Things” Ryder.

Black Swan 2

To dance the role, Nina must embody both the innocent Swan Queen, AND her doppleganger evil twin, the Black Swan.  Nina believes she deserve the part of the Swan Queen, but her snooty French director doesn’t believe she can dance seductively enough.

Black Swan 3

Keep on reading…