Me, Myself, and the Voices in My Head

A place to ramble and maybe make some sense about a thing or two.

Archive for the tag “sleepover”

“Dallas” is still dull as dishwater….

Oh, the 1980s.  When not everyone could have cable television and even if you did, you didn’t have 800+ channels of crap from which to choose your evening’s entertainment.  Back then, people actually made plans around their favorite television shows.  Well, unless they were wealthy enough to own a VHS or BETA video recording machine to record a show for them, commercials and all.  No DVRs.  No commercial skips.  Watch it when it airs or wait until rerun season and hope the episode you missed is there.

I had to explain all of that to Youngest Son tonight as Husband sat on the couch (and for over an hour did NOT fall asleep!) and watched the new series of Dallas on TNT.  He was a big fan of the show back in the 1980s and wanted to see how stupid….I mean….good the modernized show would be.  Of course, when you get the old actors on there playing their old roles, you can’t help but remember what the show used to be and wonder if they can actually get it to be that good (or bad) again.

Now, I didn’t watch Dallas when it was on in the 1980s.  The only episodes I ever watched were when J.R. was shot (because, who didn’t watch that one?) and the one when Southfork burned.  That episode I was somewhat sort-of forced to watch because I was at a sleepover at a friend’s house and all of the other girls loved Dallas but I had no idea who anyone was other than J.R. and Bobby.  Oh, and I did see the episode when Bobby comes back in the shower — but that was a rerun many, many years after it originally aired.

So, I’m watching the show with Husband and it’s as goofy as ever.  Youngest Son asked, “Is this a male soap opera?”

Yes, Son.  Yes it is.

Nighttime soap operas like Dallas, Dynasty, and Falcon Crest were heavily watched by women but they were designed to get the men-folk into the sittin’ room to watch as well.  They weren’t as silly as the daytime soaps, but you still knew that every scene had to have someone looking off into the distance as if they’re thinking, “Did that cat pee in the litterbox?” (it’s an acting trick) while the camera either gets closer or pulls back before the scene changes.  Or before a commercial came on.  Or before another ad for the same show you were watching came on to preview the next week’s episode.  As if you’d miss it….

So, yeah, I’m not particularly thrilled with the new version of the old show.  I liked how they tried to keep the intro credits the same with the music and scenes of Dallas (Texas).  But, a neat intro does not a great show make.  I might give it a few more episodes before I totally write it off as a bad job.  Seeing Larry Hagman and Patrick Duffy talking about what Miss Ellie did or didn’t want with her will is still interesting.  Goofy, but interesting.


7 Ps Rule needs to include “Patience”

You know the 7 Ps Rule, right?  If you were in the military, I’m fairly certain that you’ve heard it multiple times.  If you teach school, you most likely had to memorize it during your Master’s degree classes (except they usually did the 6 Ps to omit the one “questionable” word).  And if you ever need to remember how to prepare for something, it’s one of the best rules to keep in mind.

Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss-Poor Performance.

Yes, I know there are many different variants on this mnemonic device.  But, this is the one I learned first both from sitting through graduate-level courses when my parents were getting their Master’s/Specialist’s in Education degrees and by having military members in my family.  Over the years, it’s served me well.

However, today Youngest Son needs to add the word “Patience.”  More grammatically correct, it should be “Patient” as in “Patient Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance” (deleted the objectionable word since he’s still not allowed to swear).  In a few weeks he’ll be celebrating his birthday and we’ve agreed to allow him to invite over his closest friends for a pizza party and then for them to go to the movies that evening.  The female guests will have to be picked up by their parents after the movie while the male guests can come to our house for a sleepover.  He’s been texting all of his friends today and bugging me for specific details, such as start time, menu, etc.

He’s forgotten that his father and I have not finalized any plans.  He’s also forgotten that he’s still grounded at the moment and if he doesn’t earn his privileges back in time there won’t be a birthday party.  His friends are all trying to arrange their schedules and make suggestions for things to do and ingredients for the pizzas but we don’t have anything confirmed at the moment.  Big shock for him and his buddies if it’s all for nothing!

I admire his desire to be sure to plan early enough in advance so that all of his friends have the opportunity to check with their parents/families to ensure if they’d be able to attend.  I’m just not happy that he’s getting their expectations up for something that may or may not happen.  Plus, the parents also won’t be very happy if they change their schedules around to accommodate something that isn’t happening.

Oh well.  Not much I can do about it at the moment.  I told him to be sure to let everyone know that nothing has been confirmed yet and that he’s just checking to see if they would be able to attend.  That way, we can also plan for how much food and how many tickets we’ll need to buy.

We’ll see what happens.

Survived another sleepover!

Why is it when Youngest Son has a friend or friends over to spend the night I’m the one completely exhausted the next day?  It’s not like I’m up watching movies at 2:30 a.m. or trying to finish the last slices of the jalapeno pizza they ordered on a whim!

Fortunately, Youngest Son’s friend (to whom he was going to introduce the game Warhammer 40K) enjoyed it very much.  I loaned him some of my army since he wants to play the same one I have and he picked up the rules very quickly.  They played for over 3 hours and then started another game this morning.  We all then went out-of-town to the closest gaming store and Youngest Son’s friend had left-over birthday money that he used to purchase some figures so he can start his own army.  We even bought him a really cool figure that was already put together and painted that he saw and liked (and it wasn’t too expensive) and gave it to him as a belated birthday gift.  After having lunch and a running a few more errands, we came back to the house and Youngest Son began teaching his friend how to assemble the figures.  They got two done in the short time they had left and they’re both looking forward to the time after school gets out for the summer when they can spend more time together assembling, painting, and playing with the figures and ships for their respective armies.  I’m very, very thankful Youngest Son has friends here.  We were worried that it would be hard for him to make friends since we’re “not from ’round here” but he’s fitting in with a pretty good group.

Well, this is going to be short ’cause in an hour Syfy is going to be showing the new “Treasure Island” with Eddie Izzard, Elijah Wood and Donald Sutherland.  DEFINITELY want to see it!!

Sleepover time again!

Just a quick post ’cause I’m trying to get things ready for tonight/tomorrow.  Youngest Son is having a friend over for the evening and to spend the day with tomorrow.  He attended his friend’s birthday party last weekend and bought him a present that has had the friend fascinated all week.

Husband, Youngest Son, and I enjoy playing the miniatures game Warhammer 4000 (also known as Warhammer 40K).  It’s a fun strategy/tactics game played with miniature figures and vehicles on a tabletop that you “decorate” with obstacles and terrain to make it look like you’re “invading” another world.  Husband plays the Space Marines — humans, and has his battle suits painted with the 35th Infantry Division patch on them.  Youngest Son plays the Eldar — an alien race that is very powerful and has a special character called an Avatar that can basically walk-through the playing area “killing” anything in its path.  I play the Tau — an alien race somewhat based on the Samurai/Bushido code where they believe everything is “for the greater good” and use highly specialized weapons that don’t require the soldiers to be close enough for hand-to-hand combat (VERY long-range weapons).  Youngest Son’s friend was looking at different types of characters and picked the Tau as well.  The gift Youngest Son gave him was the Codex for the Tau — a book published by Games Workshop (the publishers of the game system and who make ginormous sums of money on the expensive figures, paints, books, and accessories to play the game) which explains who the Tau are, what they do, how they fight, what they believe in, and then specifics on each type of character and the weapons, vehicles, and other accessories they can use during the game.

In the game, teams or individual armies face-off on large tabletops and roll dice to determine if they can move and/or attack and must remain in-range of other persons/items/equipment, if required, and everything is based on whatever you roll on the dice required for the type of movement or attack you’re attempting and a chart in the book that tells you if you’re successful or not.  Simple, huh?

Yeah, I’m still trying to learn it all and this game has been out since the 1990s and Husband used to play it a LOT back then.  I never got involved with it and probably wouldn’t be now except that Husband lucked-out on an entire Tau army with additional personnel, vehicles, and lots of extras that had the whole set been sold at a gaming store or online would have cost over $400, easily.  He found it at a thrift shop for $18.  For that low of a price, how could I resist?  Plus, if I ever get tired of it, I can sell-off the items for the going rate and definitely more than double my money!  That is, if Youngest Son doesn’t try to get them — he keeps asking me if I want to trade armies with him.  He just doesn’t like it because my basic strategic move is to set-up my armies at the far corner of the table and shoot at everyone from there because I have weapons that have a range of 36-inches and most tables aren’t that big.  That means, almost no matter what I roll, I’ll hit them.

So Youngest Son and his friend are going to attempt to play the game tonight since his friend is really, really desperate to see how it all works.  I told him I’d loan him a few figures to play with so he can get the idea.  Then tomorrow when we go out-of-town to get the huge bags of dog food I need for Celeste and Harley and to take Husband for an early birthday lunch, we’re going to swing by the gaming store so that his friend can spend some of his birthday money if he wants to on an army (or parts of one).  Then the two boys will be able to play each other at their houses once school is over and might be able to enter some of the tournaments at the gaming store during summer vacation.

I’ve tied the voices in my head to the back of my skull for the day.  I’m not in a manic mode today and I’m holding well on keeping myself out of falling into the depressive side.  I’m sure they’ll get free and the story will continue again sooner-or-later, but for now I have to decide which figures I’ll let the kiddo borrow for the evening.  Fortunately, my metal figures (which they no longer make) are really too powerful (and expensive) for a beginner and he can use my plastic figures (which are easy to repair if one should accidentally fall off the table and break).

And, yes, May the 4th be with you!

Another speedy post!

Yup, still watching television.  Oh, I’ve slept since my last post and now, but the weather outside is crummy and I’m not in the mood to go anywhere.  Youngest Son had a blast at his friend’s birthday party/sleepover last night.  Watching the St. Louis Cardinals’ game at the moment, and will probably watch Iron Man 2 tonight.  Yes, I’ve already seen it and have it on DVD, but Robert Downey Jr. is just perfect for the role!  He’s had problems with alcohol; he looks like Tony Stark; and he’s got a quick wit and good timing which makes him perfect, in my opinion, as a fan of the Iron Man comics.

So, back to the loveseat!! (The cursed couch has already claimed Husband today.)

Quickie post tonight

Youngest Son is away at a birthday party/sleepover.  Tonight Husband and I went out to dinner and watched the Stan Lee special and Thor on EPIX.  It’s the free weekend to try that channel on satellite and they have neat shows.  Now I’m watching/listening to The Secret Policeman’s’ Ball ’cause Eddie Izzard is hosting it along with a bunch of other comedians and musicians.  I usually never get to watch it live and since it’s on, I figured I might as well.

So, don’t be surprised if all of my posts are short this weekend.  With EPIX channels 1, 2, 3, and Drive-In free, I plan to watch a lot of good (and bad) movies!

Parents’ night….

Youngest Son is away at a sleepover.  One of his friends is having a birthday party & they’ve gone to play Laser Tag and eat their weight in pizza.  Husband and I spent the evening buying items for props for our theatrical production and will probably be shopping more tomorrow.  I just can’t stand not having what I want for the show and as I’ve said before it’s going to look right if there’s any way I can make it happen.  Plus, I can always resell the antique items on eBay or something.  So, that’s all I’m posting today.  Almost said to heck with it but figured I’d stick it out another day at least.

Sleepover Survivor’s Summary

Last night was hysterical!  Youngest Son had two friends over for his first “group” sleepover.  One of his friends wasn’t able to attend but the other two were more than happy to make up for the missing energy in the room.

Oddly, they wanted to start the evening by watching the DVD we have of this year’s school musical.  Youngest Son and his friend Leonard were both in the show.  Leonard was the lead actor and had not seen the DVD yet (the show was produced in November 2011).  Youngest Son, Leonard, and Sheldon were having a blast watching the show, telling backstage stories, and re-winding the action to see the goof-ups and other silly things going on during the performance.  Sadly, the student they “hired” to make the DVD only filmed one night out of the three productions and had a field day with the zoom button.  Let’s just say that if you get motion-sick easily, you do not want to watch the DVD.

After that we ordered pizza.  I made sure each of the guys brought their own bottle of soda or other suitable beverage because I didn’t want to go out and buy a lot and have a bunch of caffeine-laden sodas (which I don’t drink at all) lying around the house.  Three large deep-dish pizzas lasted a lot longer than I thought they would.  Teenage boys are notorious for scarfing-down anything that’s covered in pepperoni and cheese but there was still some left this morning.  After the pizza-snarf began, they decided that they wanted to watch a real movie.  Leonard had never seen Star Wars: Episode IV, A New Hope which just completely baffled me since all of the guys are pretty well-versed in nerdy/geeky genre information.

Quick  note here — you may recognize the names of Youngest Son’s friends from a television show.  They call themselves “The Big Bang Club” at school and each kid has a character and they even call themselves by those names.  They even added a female friend of theirs (as Penny) so they’d have the whole core cast.

Back to the story.  Since I’m also a huge Star Wars geek (seen the original trilogy movies over 1000+ times each), I asked if they wanted to see the awful 1990’s “remakes” with “added special effects,” the original theatrical version (my favorite), or the latest Blu-Ray release for the 30th Anniversary.  I was impressed that they picked the theatrical release.  So, I popped-in the DVD for them and waited for them to be amazed with the movie.

That didn’t take long.  Not the being amazed part.  The being interested part.  I forgot that teenage boys also have a short attention span and when it came to watching the entire movie, that wasn’t going to happen.  Youngest Son and Sheldon wanted to prank-call Penny because Leonard is upset he broke-up with her and they wanted to leave a message on her voicemail about it.  (No, I’m not kidding.  “Leonard” and “Penny” really were “dating” and have broken-up now.)  Then they each wanted to play with their Nintendo DS units.  Then they saw Youngest Son’s Chess 4 set and wanted to play that.  All of this while the movie is still playing in the background.  Husband agreed to be the fourth so they could play Chess 4 — a game designed, you guessed it, so four people could play chess against each other at the same time.  Sheldon said he knew he was going to be slaughtered because he and Youngest Son play chess at school all the time and Youngest Son beats him easily.  And he did again on this version — he wiped-out the other three players in almost no time.

After that they talked and laughed and watched the last minutes of the movie before the credits started to roll.  Once the movie was officially over, they decided to play games on our PlayStation 3.  We have some that are for up-to four players, so they each grabbed a controller and started playing.  After they tired of one they’d put in another.  Soon they wanted to play Lego Star Wars and took turns trying to play in co-op mode when only Youngest Son knew how the game worked.

Finally, around 11:30 p.m., I told them they needed to get off the PS3 and get their sleeping bags out.  They didn’t necessarily have to go to sleep, but I was going to bed and wanted to be sure that they got some rest since Leonard’s parents would be by early to pick him up for church.  Husband had already fallen asleep, so I went to bed to read while listening to make sure the guys were okay.  A pillow fight broke out between them.  Actually, to hear them tell it, it was a “pillows versus ‘bag of wet cement’ fight” since Leonard’s pillow was a lot firmer than the other two’s.  Soon they teamed-up and it became a pillow ambush.  They finally decided to watch Star Wars: Episode VI, Return of the Jedi because Leonard had never seen that one either and wanted to know why everyone thinks the “It’s a trap!” jokes are funny.  He stayed awake long enough to hear “It’s a trap!” in the movie and then drifted-off.  Sheldon fell asleep and then woke up and went back to sleep after the movie was over.  Youngest Son stayed-up for the whole thing and turned off the TV and DVD player when it was over.  I had already passed-out in bed after the beginning scenes had played.

I got up at 5 a.m. like I do every morning to take my medication and let the dogs out for “walkies.”  I could tell the boys had tired themselves out because there wasn’t a peep coming from the living room floor.  Either that or Cat had slept on their faces and killed them, but I was pretty sure that hadn’t happened.  Usually there’s a little snoring out of Youngest Son, but he was too tired to do so.  After going back to bed and getting up a couple of hours later, Leonard was awake and playing on his DS; Youngest Son was just starting to awaken; and Sheldon was still crashed-out on the floor.  I ordered them up and to get ready so that we could go out for breakfast at the worldwide-franchised evil clown fast food restaurant just a couple of blocks away.  While the kids ate, Husband, Celeste and I sat and had some breakfast as well while waiting to return the boys to their parents (who were to meet us there).  Husband said his coffee was McCrappy and realized why he never goes there for breakfast anymore.  Ever.  Once the parents had retrieved their offspring, we returned home.

Fortunately the guys didn’t mess-up the house and things were easily put back in order.  We thought about taking Celeste to the self-service dog wash a few towns over but they’re closed on Sundays.  So, I went and took a nap.

I remember the days of sleepovers at my house and going to parties at friends’ houses.  Everyone believed they could stay up all night and not have to sleep and sometimes punished those who did by dunking their bra in water and putting it in the freezer.  At least the guys didn’t do silly things like that at our house — although one admitted they wanted to try the “hand in the bowl of warm water” trick.  The only reason they didn’t was because Mythbusters had already proven it didn’t work.  Lucky for them.  If they’d tried it or if it had worked on my hardwood floors, there would be three “geeks” learning to sand, stain, and seal 79-year-old wood with their toothbrushes.  And I don’t believe there’s an app for that.

Dull, dull, dull: Part Deux

Another uneventful day.  I should be grateful, I guess.  Usually when my days are incredibly busy they’re not busy in a “good” way.  My job requires a natural/national disaster for me to be employed and it’s kind of embarrassing being the only person in a room cheering for a hurricane to make landfall so I can earn a paycheck and pay some bills.

I did supervise Youngest Son preparing for his friends to visit tomorrow.  There will be three teenage boys (including Youngest Son) “camped-out” on my living room floor tomorrow night watching movies and playing video games.  All of them are highly intelligent and easily bored if they’re not intellectually challenged.  Fortunately, being a parent and already having raised a child who’s now in college, I know that large amounts of soda and pizza will keep their appetites satisfied and the large library of DVDs, board games, video games, books, etc. will keep their minds entertained.  At least until the caffeine wears-off and they collapse on their sleeping bags.  I get to enjoy the “I’m not tired” protests during the evening as I remind them that they’ll have to get up the next morning and then watching them amble around the house like zombies because they believed they could stay awake all night.

There was some good news today from my Internet friends.  A “friend” of mine became a U.S. citizen today.  I only type “friend” with quotation marks because my friend, his wife, their family and I have never actually met.  We’re all fans of RiffTrax (from the creators of Mystery Science Theater 3000 — that’ll be another post someday) and we along with a LOT of other people have become friends over the Internet.  But I’m very proud of his achievement.  I have another “friend” in that group who became a citizen as well.  I’m not collecting non-citizens and converting them, but I’m glad of their choice to join our great experiment and now they’ll be able to become disgruntled with their government representation just like the rest of us.

Well, at least I posted today.  Some days it’s harder to think of a topic or something worth reading.  I’m pretty sure by the time this weekend is over I’ll have good subjects.  Oh, and Presidents’ Day has already been writing itself, so be sure to come back that day!

Dull, dull, dull….

Pretty boring day.  Took medicine and then took a nap. Got up to watch TV and worked around the house.  Broke a tooth and went to the dentist.  Scheduled another dental appointment for next week to have tooth taken care of.  Made dinner.  Got a text that Step-Father fell and broke his lower leg.  Watched TV.  Tried to play videogame and got stuck within the first 15 minutes.  Ate dinner.  Watched Big Bang Theory.  Realized I’d not written a blog yet.  Got laptop out and started typing.

Pretty sad when you can sum-up your day in less than 100 words.  Oh well, not every day is going to be thrilling.  Maybe tomorrow will be more exciting.  Youngest Son has the day off, and he’ll be busy preparing for his sleepover Saturday night.  At least I remembered to post something tonight.

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