Friday, January 27, 2006

Mindless Topic #1

I never used to watch all that much TV, but lately, I've been in front of the tube a lot more than usual--something I've found tends to happen when I have a nursing infant around. Long story short, I have carpal tunnel, it's sometimes hard for me to hold a book with one hand, and I need the other hand to keep poor Marin from rolling off my lap and onto the floor. Ergo, I watch TV while Marin nurses.

I was supposed to take an online readers' group class on Great Expectations this month to keep my mind from completely rotting away, but between the online class I'm giving, hanging out with the kids and Jose, work, and trying to at least make an attempt to pay attention to friends, I haven't gotten past the first chapter. (I've been meaning to read Great Expectations for-freaking-EVER. And given how much I love David Copperfield--the book, not the magician--this should not be a problem, other than that it's an oversized trade paperback I can't hold with one hand. This year, I am still resolved to read this book, despite the fact that I'm flunking the free online class at the moment.)

Anyway, since I'm busy allowing my brain to degenerate, here are my current guilty television pleasures:

* BONES: OK, I confess, I started watching this Fox forensic drama because I'm carrying over a mad-hot crush on David Boreanaz from Angel, which was tragically canceled. And, at first, his acting (and OK, his looks--color me superficial) was all that made me watch. With dull performances from the lead actress; an irritating, recurring line ("Don't call me 'Bones'"); and bizarre subplots including one revolving around a supporting cast member's indigestion; I wasn't sure how much longer my crush would allow me to waste away an hour of my life each week. If it weren't for Marin, I'd have given up after two episodes. However, I've kept watching, and it's grown on me.

Basically, the plot revolves around a group of forensic anthropologists who help Boreanaz's FBI agent solve homicides where the victim's body has become too decomposed or destroyed for standard methods to work. Yes, it's another CSI-like series, but it's slowly developed a heart and humor that most of its contemporaries seem to lack.

FAVORITE RANDOM MOMENT: The Christmas episode, where the cast was quarantined in their lab over Christmas eve after accidentally releases a potentially fatal virus into the air. They all were allowed a visitation (through plexiglass) with family members, and forensic artist Angela warned her colleagues that they would recognize her dad, but she didn't want to talk about it. So when one of the singers from ZZ Top walked in as her dad in what had to be the most random television moment I've ever seen, I nearly died laughing.

AMERICAN IDOL: Who's not watching this show? (OK, people with lives, probably, or more intellectually stimulating pastimes.) Anyway, I'm obsessed, and I pick Paris Bennett to walk away with the title or, at least, the most lucrative recording contract.

MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENT: This is for me, not the contestants. Because when blonde, pixie-voiced Kellie Pickler walked in and they did that shameless, manipulative montage about how her mother left her when she was two and her father is a drug addict and currently in jail, and then they showed her cute little smiling two-year-old face from a picture presumably from around the time her mother left her, I nearly lost it. OK, I did lose it. Seriously. American Idol made me cry, and during a sappy montage, no less. But you know, every little girl should be loved as much as mine are, and it hurts to think that there are some who aren't. I would love to see Kellie end up with a recording contract, even if she's destined to lose to Paris. She not only has a lovely voice, but she has nice manners--which is amazing since she had very little parental guidance. Good for her. (God, I'm SO turning into my mother.)

SKATING WITH THE STARS: Another mindless, guilty pleasure. But I'll watch anything that has to do with figure skating. However, I am so glad I have Tivo, because who wants to sit through Summer Sanders' incessant blathering and Scott Hamilton's shouting? (Is it because he's short that he feels he has to shout every word that comes out of his mouth? I'm short, and I don't shout. What's up with that?) Not to mention Debbie Gibson's whiny excuses whenever the judges comment on her less-than-stellar skating. Now I remember why Debbie Gibson used to irritate me.

You know what? I'm not a star, but they should have asked me to skate with Kurt Browning. Because really, I would have been the Best. Figure skater. EVAH. If I'd only had lessons.

That said, I'm enjoying Skating with the Stars, but not as much as I'll enjoy the real thing when the Winter Olympics start. Despite the new judging system that has unfairly handicapped Michelle Kwan by de-emphasizing the artistic element and relying too much on jumps. Stupid Marie Reine-LeGougne. (And if you know what I'm talking about, welcome to Nerd-dom.)

FAVORITE MOMENT: Don't have one yet, though it will be fun to watch Debbie Gibson get kicked off sometime in the near future. Or fall on her head--whichever comes first.

THE OC: The further I get down this list, the more I realize I need to watch something a little more edifying if I'm going to insist on spending this many hours in front of a TV. Anyway, I love the OC. It's completely mindless, but the dialogue is funny, and I've always loved the quirkiness Peter Gallagher brings to any character he plays. And it always provides good material for making fun of Mischa Barton with my brother Troy.

FAVORITE MOMENT: Watching Johnny get run over. Could the dude BE any more annoying? Unfortunately, this didn't result in the "Tragedy comes to the OC" storyline I was hoping for, but a Johnny-centric story arc where the actor shows his egregious lack of comedic timing and any acting talent whatsoever. Mr. One-trick-pony needs to go brood somewhere else, preferably on a show I don't watch, like Freddie.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Fat Woman Sad

Here's why today is probably going to suck:

Whenever I'm procrastinating, I have this ridiculous habit of either Googling myself (to see if there are any odd reviews of my books out there), or playing with the SiteMeter on my blog to see if anyone bothers to read this mess. (FYI, I'm not narcissistic, I swear! I'll do anything to avoid writing, and Googling yourself is fun when you have a weird last name, because all sorts of weird things come up.)

So I was checking out the Referral section of SiteMeter, and to my horror, I discovered that SOMEONE happened upon my blog while searching Blogspot for "fat woman sad."

FAT WOMAN SAD?!?!?!?! What the crunk is that? First of all, I'm not sad. Snarky by nature, yes, but I have a lot to be grateful for and I'm grateful for it every day. Given that, I couldn't be sad if I tried. Second, sure, I'm a woman, and sure, seven weeks after having baby number two, I could use an extreme stomach makeover. But does Blogspot have to slap me in the face with that fact by putting me high up on a list of sad fat women? For the record, Blogspot, I had a c-section and COULDN'T exercise for six of the past seven weeks. And I had to take that extra week to catalog my exercise video collection--because everyone knows you can't start exercising with an unalphabetized exercise video collection. It just wouldn't be right.

Not to mention, Blogspot, that playing upon the insecurities of a woman who's recently given birth and is dealing with enough post-partum crap is mean and not good business. And furthermore, Blogspot, segregating blogs by weight smacks of discrimination. You should be more preoccupied with my mind, Blogspot, my mind. Not the junk in my trunk.

Fat woman sad. Feh.

It's enough to make a girl switch to LiveJournal.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Seven and the Ragged Tiger

Mari LaCroix tagged me with this Seven Things thing, and as is the case with most surveys of this type, I feel compelled to fill it in. (BTW, there is no ragged tiger. The oddball title up there is the title of an old Duran Duran album--in which I don't believe there was a ragged tiger, either--in case you're not a huge groupie like I was. OK, still am. Because puffy hair and eye makeup or not, how hot was Simon in the "Hungry Like A Wolf" video?)

Seven things to do before I die:
1. Go to Africa
2. Scuba dive the Galapagos
3. Write and sell the big suspense and the big women's fiction books I have in my head.
4. See my girls settled and happy.
5. Go back to New Zealand and spend a few weeks there, if not build my summer house there once I find a pile of money.
6. Read all the books in my TBR pile (unless they suck, in which case I'm not reading past page 100).
7. Learn to do a lutz or a salchow, so I can continue to delude myself that I could have been the Best. Figure skater. EVAH. had I only had lessons.

Seven things I cannot do:
1. Ballet dance
2. Jump in the spider tank on Fear Factor without completely losing my mind.
3. The back of my hair. It simply will not cooperate.
4. Quantum physics. Physics frightens me.
5. Understand really complex mathematics. A Beautiful Mind frightened me. My brain is so little and simple.
6. Cook without a recipe. Well I CAN, but you wouldn't want to eat the results.
7. Stop being stubborn.

Seven things that attract me to my spouse:
1. His innate sweetness.
2. Watching him play with Maggie and Marin.
3. Those big brown eyes.
4. Listening to him speak Spanish, even if he gets things wrong from time to time.
5. His sense of humor. Because even when I don't get his jokes, watching him crack himself up is hilarious.
6. His intelligence. Even if we can't really discuss books because he'll only read sci-fi--and only a SPECIFIC type of sci-fi. No space opera, no fantasy elements, no weird aliens that look like animals, no cyberpunk, no humorous sci-fi, ad nauseum, ad infinitum. Must be Very Serious Sci-Fi with believable and intricate scientific explanations for the world that was built, and a storyline that is both edifying, suspenseful, and intriguing. Sigh.
7. Oh, and he's hot.

Seven Things I Say (or Write) Most Often:
1. Dude.
2. You're kidding me.
3. Whatever.
4. Jose, go get the baby.
5. Maggie, don't squash your sister.
6. Maggie! Rose! Fernandez!
7. I'm telling you....

Seven Books (or Series) I love:
1. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
2. Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
3. O Pioneers by Willa Cather
4. The Sevenwaters Trilogy by Juliet Marillier
5. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card (Yeah, Jose made me read it. It rocked.)
6. Garden of Beasts by Jeffrey Deaver
7. The Eight by Katherine Neville

Seven Movies I Would Watch Over and Over Again:
1. The five-hour BBC version of Pride & Prejudice. (And don't tell me to get a life unless you've seen it. I dare you to start watching and not stay up until 3 am to finish it. Keira Knightley, I'm talking to you, you miserable excuse for an Elizabeth Bennett.)
2. Strictly Ballroom. In my next life, I want to be in a Baz Luhrmann film. (Just not Romeo + Juliet.)
3. Casablanca (I know, everyone loves Casablanca. But there's a reason for it.)
4. Rear Window
5. The Lord of the Rings trilogy. All hail the marvelous Peter Jackson.
6. The Saint. Sure it has plot holes and a million endings, but Val Kilmer is hot.
7. The old-school Star Wars trilogy, even if you won't release the final three parts, George, you wanker.

Seven People I Want to Join In (Be Tagged):
1. Oh, heck if I know. If you read this and feel moved to do your own version, consider yourself tagged!

One that I Finished

In my last books post, I forgot to mention that I also recently finished Patricia McLinn's THE GAMES, which centers around four women participating in the Winter Olympics. Given that Patricia writes a powerfully emotional book with spot-on research, and given that I am a Winter Olympics junkie, this book was like my own special brand of crack. Loved it, couldn't put it down until I finished it, highly recommend it. Though she's a long-time veteran of Silhouette Special Edition, Patricia published THE GAMES with independent Delphi Press, because the larger publisher she submitted to "didn't think anyone would care about the Olympics." Losers.

So if you've ever wanted to know what it would be like to be an Olympic-caliber biathlete, figure skater, or alpine skiier (while meeting the hockey-playing love of your life for the first time, reconciling with the former Soviet skating powerhouse who broke your heart after you won the gold medal in your own event, or avoiding verbal sparring with your prickly skiing coach with whom you might just be falling in love), then go here for information on ordering this fab book: .

Speaking of books, WHY am I reading A YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING? An attempt to appear literary? An experiment in mental masochism? Post-partum hormonal psychosis? Again, it's so well-written, but I have long been firmly in denial about my family's mortality, and I don't want to have to confront it like I'm finding myself doing while reading Didion's painfully sad memoir. We're immortal, my girls are going to have long and happy lives, and Jose and I are going to be together and healthy well past our hundredth birthdays (because, after all, medical science is making such huge advances, people of our generation should start routinely living past 100. I read that in Popular Science, so it must be true).

Maybe it's time to put AYOMT down and turn to some fluff. Mindless, shiny, happy, unadulterated fluff to read. Like Vanity Fair's interview with Lindsay Lohan, or the latest trivia-filled issue of Mental Floss magazine, or Curious George Lives Forever. Color me a coward, but I like denial.

About Me

My photo
Tracy Montoya writes romantic suspense for Harlequin Intrigue.

Twitter Updates

    follow me on Twitter