Sunday, February 27, 2011

Jive talking

My sweet friend who just turned 30 wants to know if she should have a baby. How will she able to tell if it's the right decision for her and her husband? Now? Later? Will she regret the decision, whatever it is she does decide, in the end?

I met an old school-friend of mine (O) for brunch this morning. We've known each other since we were 13 years old, we each have two children, we are completely different from each other. I told her about my sweet 30-year-old friend and she smiled the same smile I smiled when I first heard the question. "You don't decide. In this case, you just act," she said, with a sigh. We wondered how this same, beautiful, serious, ambitious, talented, loving young woman had decided to get married. We were quite certain it didn't involve a pros and cons table typed neatly on a sheet of pristine white paper.

I keep thinking about the question. It's a woman's question, ultimately a woman's decision - when is a good time to try and create a brand-new person, from nothing? A person who will grow up to be different to you. The 30-year-old says she knows that she'll hate being pregnant, I can't argue with that - how she might feel is just that, how she might feel. Babies bring mess and stress and a lot of disorganisation; that's hard if you enjoy your neat, quiet house and your romantic couple time. So maybe it's not such a good idea to make a human being, you know, a person, one moment there's no person and then, suddenly, voila, a new person living and breathing and always, always, someone you never expected to make.

It is better to remain silent.

Our little blogging sphere is packed to the brim with "mommy bloggers," and I love them. I wish that I had the Internet when my children were younger; I was stuck with Dr. Penelope Leach and Dr. Berry Brazelton on pay TV, and my much-thumbed copy of "What To expect the First Year." When I was pregnant with Ms CB I knew NOTHING about babies, I hadn't even babysat any little kids. I was naive and silly and really, looking back, it's kind of crazy how little I knew and how happy I was.

In this case, the men (our loving, caring, adored partners through those crazy years) may actually know better than us - sometimes not talking about stuff can be much much better.

Or maybe not.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

We told so many lies it's hard to know what's the truth

As you can see, I'm on a rom-com film binge. It's for work, really it is. What? It is! In the name of research I'm reading every rom-com script I can find, and then watching the films.

I had the terrible misfortune of watching this film yesterday. It is so repulsive that I felt like disinfecting myself after viewing it. Its premise is that no matter how selfish, mean and stupid a man is, as long as he looks like Patrick Dempsey then he's the man of every woman's dreams. Can you hear that sound? It's me. Retching. The final straw for me, the final so unfunny gag which made me yell obscenities at my TV screen was the addition of an overweight bridesmaid who was repeatedly humiliated for no other reason than to make the stupid Patrick Dempsey-like morons in the audience laugh. Oh look, a fat girl trying to fit into a bridesmaid's dress that's a size too small for her, oh look how funny - a fat girl sitting down and ripping her dress at her friend's wedding, because you know she's so fat and that's like so incredibly funny.

In an attempt to erase all memory of this shocking film I returned to an old favourite, my darling Peter Weir's "Green Card."

Dear Mr. Weir,

You make my heart sing with your delicate understanding of what makes love so beautiful and so funny and sweet and charming.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart,

and please write and direct another romantic comedy,

I'm begging you,


Eleanor x

The climactic ending (which in a rom-com is never ever a sexual climax, but you probably knew that already) of "Green Card" has this music by Hans Zimmer. It's called "Instinct," which is what Gerard tries to teach Andie to follow.

Here it is:

And, finally, here's a link to a blog which celebrates the beauty of Andie/Bronte's garden in the film. Mary would have loved to photograph that garden, but that's another story.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Hey Duyvken,

If Rock doesn't quite fit the baby there's always Cary... or Grant..

E x

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

"The most sparkling sexcapade that ever winked at convention"

I'm a Valentine Day's scrooge, hate it, can't stand it. You could probably tell that from my previous post. The only thing I hate more than Valentine's Day is public marriage proposals. I think that proposing to your loved one in public is akin to having sex on national TV, because intimacy is always better when it's shared with a million strangers. Ugh.

In any case, here's the most divine trailer for "Pillow Talk," a movie from an era which understood something about romance and love.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

This is not Hollywood, this is my life.

This is not Hollywood,

There is no camera in my room.

This is not Hollywood,

Flowers grow before they bloom.

Kasey Chambers (another Aussie) whose song "Hollywood" reminds me of my grandpa's phrase - "The most bitter truth is better than the sweetest lie."

Love is not a Hallmark card. Thank goodness.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

It doesn't really matter if you're rich or you're poor if you're dancing in a circle that's been danced in before.

I just discovered Clare Bowditch and I love her so much. And she's Aussie, yay!

She has another song which I can't find on the net, but I bought it (it's in the same album as the song below) and I'm telling you - it cracks me up. It's called "I Think I Lost My Product" and it instantly makes me giggle.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Childhood sweethearts

Oh, first... the movie I quoted in the last post was "The Apartment." It's a fun film with a young Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine; it's often described as a classic so I finally watched it with Miss CB last night. So lovely!

But today Miss CB and I saw "Tamara Drewe" at the local cinema. I'm telling you, never before has a film had such a powerfully depressive effect on the two of us. First of all, that music you hear at the beginning of the trailer - those xylophone-like tones - are repeated throughout the entire film ad nauseum. And the trailer lies, as does the title, because Tamara Drewe is NOT the protagonist. No she's not. She's the sexiest looking woman in the film, and she sleeps with the most men in the film, but that's about it. That sums up her character. She's this fabulous journalist who comes back to the little village where she grew up, and where she lost her virginity, and then she sleeps with a famous drummer and a famous writer (who's married to the only fully rounded character in the film, and who should really be the protagonist, but isn't quite, probably because her boobs are a bit saggy and she's a fully rounded character). And then, suddenly, out of the blue, Tamara turns around and chooses the guy who helped her lose her virginity all those years ago. How lovely.

Tonight, we watched "Sweet Home Alabama" because it just happened to start at the same time as we collapsed on the sofa after dinner. Here's another young woman who returns to her childhood home after having found fame and fortune in the big city. She also has a guy there who she grew up with, and yes they were lovers from way back, and there's fun and love and lots of character development. I know, I know, I know, it's a silly Hollywood romantic comedy, but shoot me if I don't prefer that every single time to a pretentious, fake, non-rom-com, protagonist-less British film about a bunch of wanky writers who can't control their sexual urges.


I like to look up films at rottentomatoes to see what the critics thought, and to my utter disbelief it looks like I'm in the minority here. Look at Tamara Drewe vs. Alabama. I wonder if it's because there are usually many more male film critics? Or maybe I'm just shallow. Either way, it took me three hours to shake myself out of my bad mood after watching TD, and that's just not a good cinematic experience, whatever the critics say.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

A classic romantic comedy

"When you're in love with a married man, you shouldn't wear mascara."

Anybody know what film that comes from?

Here's a hint:

The protagonist of this film strains his spaghetti with a tennis racket.

Friday, February 4, 2011

It oughtta be illegal

I have a confession to make.

I adore, no, I ADORE, the Bee Gees. When I was around eleven years old my family would go on a different "country walk" every Sunday (we lived in England at the time), otherwise it would have been a bushwalk. But I digress. There was always a long drive to the start of the country walk and so my parents would play music (cassettes) and it was invariably either the Carpenters or the Bee Gees. I would look out the window and dream about love.

So now I'm in the middle of working on an idea for a romantic comedy, and like a homing pigeon I find myself coming back to the Bee Gees. I've been listening to this Barry Gibb / Barbra Streisand duet so many times that I think my family is beginning to worry. Barry is my favourite, isn't he lovely? Can't wait for Eurolush's comments on the white outfits!!

This is another, more recent, song which I'm listening to a lot. Shhh... don't tell anyone OK?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Happy Groundhog Day!!

"This is a man we're talking about, right?"