Thursday, May 30, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks:TV Edition-Secret Agents/Spies

It has been a wonky week which is why I haven’t been around apologies. My hubby’s birthday was Saturday which was fun with family and friends. Monday I was at our Satellite office and had no ability to look at my blog and yesterday was Lidocaine day with a nutty ride to Toronto...the 401 is, I believe, the busiest freeway in North America and the nuttiest...yes, apparently worse than the LA freeways, and I can see that. I was Stoned most of the day but, it helps with the pain even though it never takes it away but it helps. Anyhoo, this week, over at Wandering Through The Shelves, it is the TV edition and it’s all about spies. Let’s get to it with my 3.

1. THE AVENGERS-1961-1969

Ahh, Steed with his handy umbrella and his beautiful fellow spy in Mrs. Peel, played fetchingly by Diana Rigg, investigate and capture some very weird criminals, always looking top notch in his English suit and Mrs. Peel in her cat suit with cut outs at her hips and a watch attached with a chain. It made every man drool and, I have to admit, I dreamed of wearing something like that, but I knew better as I wouldn't want to scare anyone. Actually Honor Blackman was the first sexy gal to work with Steed, played with effervescent charm by Patrick Macnee and Linda Thorson was the last in this first edition of the TV Show(It came back later with "The New Avengers" starring Macnee, Joanna Lumley and Gareth Hunt as the poor third wheel). This tv Show was stylish, sexy and fun to watch.

2. SECRET AGENT MAN-1964-1967

Patrick McGoohan is one of my favourite actors who starred in 2 shows, this one and the great, “The Prisoner” which many people speculate was the character from Secret Agent Man or known in the U.S. as Danger Man. He was a frequent guest star on Colombo and even directed a few of the Columbo episodes and was an excellent character actor in films such as “Braveheart” playing the ruthless King Edward 1. Ok, back to the series, McGoohan played a top secret spy who often had to infiltrate and capture the evil guys using his intelligence and his hands, rather than the gun, to outwit his opponent. It is an intelligent, tense show that you have to keep your eyes on to understand the full show. I love the fact that McGoohan wrote in his clause that he was never to kiss any woman because the only woman he kissed was his wife. By the way, He was asked to play James Bond twice but declined and mentioned his friend Sean Connery instead.

3.  LA FEMME NIKITA-1997-2001

This is an American Cable/Canadian version of this oft done series, filmed, mostly, in Toronto. I think this is the best version although I didn’t care for the later episodes because it just went too dark and sad. The premise is about a two bit criminal, wrongly convicted of murder, taken by a top secret spy ring and trained to become a top notch spy. I have to admit I really like the lead, Peta Wilson, an Australian model, who portrayed the naive, warm-hearted deadly spy. She worked well with next to the hubba hubba Roy Dupuis as her trainer. The rest of the cast is well acted from the hippy, sarcastic Walter to the nerdish computer geek. The head of spy ring is the ruthless Operations but the true killer is the second in command, Madeline who talks so quietly but she is deadly. It’s worth a look.

I picked Get Smart before and MI-5( or Spooks) and the newer shows I haven’t seen. Anyway, what would be your 3?

For the men...

Your Welcome...and for people who did not know Diana Rigg was in Game of Thrones...

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks-Movies Adapted from Movies of a Different Language

Hollywood loves to remake movies from original foreign films and most people think they are brand new. The, arguably, most famous is The Magnificent Seven which is a remake of the Japanese film The Seven Samurai. It will be fun to see which film will be chosen so head on over to the brain child of this series, Wandering Through The Shelves, to find out. Here are my 3....

1. ALGIERS-1938

This film was a remake of Pepe Le Moko, a 1937 French film starring hubba hubba Jean Gavin, about a Jewel thief who can’t leave the Casbah or he will be arrested. This film introduced Hedy (not Hedley) Lamarr as the Parisian beauty who wears major jewelry while traipsing through The Casbah Lost as a little lamb. Who should find her but Charles Boyer, with the bedroom eyes, who falls for her rocks and her. It's quite the romance flick that makes me giggle but I can watch the old movies that are about romance. I am flickering my eyelashes quickly as I wrote this. Oh and Boyer's version of Pepe Le Moko was the inspiration for one of my all time favourite characters, Pepe Le Pew


I love the spaghetti westerns starring Clint Eastwood with this film being the first to star him as the man with no name. He comes to a small town where 2 families are warring between each other. Clint baby devises an ingenious plan to double-cross both and get rich in the process. This is a remake of another Kuwasawa film called Yojimbo also starring Toshiro Mifune-Kuwasawa was the director and Mifune the star of The Seven Samuraii that was remade into The Magnificent Seven. I love westerns and this is a great western which I know many would enjoy.


I love this movie which stars Robin Williams as a gay business owner of a Cabaret transvestite club in South Beach, Miami and his partner, of many years, is the star of the show played to the hilt by Nathan Lane. Williams’ character slept with a woman, once, resulting in a child which he and Lane raised. The kid falls in love when at school and wants to marry her. The problem is that her parents are prudish to say the least and her dad is a senator who is very...very right wing and opposes all that Williams and Lane's characters stand for. To say this is funny, is an understatement as I laughed like hell especially the scene stealing Hank Azaria as their houseboy who has a problem with shoes. I never thought I would see a more uglier woman than Gene Hackman. This film was inspired by the hit French film, La Cage Aux Folles which I want to see in Toronto starring Peter Marshall (Hollywood Squares fame) in the Williams role.

What films would you choose?

a special extra...

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

How to Deal with Difficult Clients-Smells and All-Part 1

As some of you may know, I am a Credit Counsellor and have been with this same non-profit agency for 28 years come May 27th. I know, a long time as the moss on my feet can tell you. Over the years, I have seen many different people with a wide array of debt, not only whom they owe but the amounts. With each client, I have found that I can group them into certain categories that most people do not want to be part of but, in all cases, I must put my best face forward. Of course, I deal with many people who are very sweet, good-natured and smell nice but, for various reasons, have found themselves in a bad way financially. I will not talk about the people who fall into this category...that would be too easy. I have composed a top 10 list of people who fall into the category of ick, blechhh, and general, "OMG, they really do exist!" model. Here are my top 10... er.. 3 the rest will come in the next  few weeks:)

1. Smelly Clients/Smelly and Miserable Clients- Smells you say? Yes and they can vary from, too much polish sausage or curry, need to take a bath because the flies are dying, to the dreaded poo poo or pee pee smell. I wish I could open up a window but, alas, that gift is not in the cards. Most people are polite, if eye tearing, nose dropping off face, smelly, but you can get the person who is as rude as their smell. I had one client who smelled so bad, another counsellor dry heaved and had to run to the washroom. This smelly gal didn't think of wearing a bra even though her boobs were very, very uneven in a strange, hypnotic kind of way. Her 300 lb plus size still did not reveal anything jolly and her hair was so greasy, you could use it to grease a skillet. Yes, she was married (to a sweet, very thin, non smelly man) and she took care of all the finances. What does one do when one has a smelly client?
A.-Get the hose and soap
B.-Suggest they need to up their toiletries to include deodorant and shampoo
C.-Break the glass and gasp for oxygen
D.-Grin and bare it.

Guess what folks? Yes, it's, no, no It's D because, regardless how they smell, it is not your position to suggest anything and, unless you believe they could harm themselves or others, you must put on a brave face, smile and dream of Vick's Vapour rub or a clothes pin. If they are just moody, like, not having their first cup of coffee and are the Incredible Hulk, don't engage in the negativity, just carry on in the best professional manner you can muster. Once they leave, then you can run outside and breathe the fresh air before you go back in, grab the air freshener and de-smell your office.

2. Pee Boys and Girls-You think I am just talking about small babies who decide to dump their load while you are discussing the Visa and Mastercard debt the parents owe but, think again. I had a lovely man in my office, who looked like a worn out skinny Santa who forgot to get the ash out of his ZZ Top beard, who just owed too much and needed to look at bankruptcy. As our session was nearing the end, I thought I could smell the odor of ..pee and, I was right. When he got out of the chair, the wet, dark spot confirmed that he, indeed, peed in my chair. Looking at his jeans was only further confirmation. He did not exhibit any dementia but, the following day, when he came back to see the Bankruptcy Administrator, she forgot to pull the pee chair and, yes, he peed again in her chair. 2 weeks later,  he came by, sat in her chair and did not pee! Unfortunately, he must have peed while walking here because he left his mark on her chair. In case you're counting, dry chairs-0 pee chairs-3. Oh, and yes, he was wearing the same clothes but, this time, the jeans were ripped so one could see his tighty whities..probably yellowy-grey. So, what does one do...

A.- Give him a bag of Depends?
B.- Place plastic down when he comes in?
C.- Spend the money on easy wipe chairs?
D.- Grin and Bare it  but contact an agency that helps at risk individuals?

For people who have peed, like this man I saw, they obviously have health issues so one needs to have compassion (plus some handy wipes and Febreeze). You might still need a clothespin for your nose, but you need to know the other services out in your community that might aid in a client's welfare. In this case, I called "Gatekeepers" which helps at risk individuals (mainly seniors) find the right support services.  By the way, we know someone who is coming in to clean the chairs.

3. Showing their Scars/Colostomy Bags- You think I'm kidding, don't you? Over the years I have found out that people come into our office very nervous and leave much relieved (see above) because we put their mind at ease and don't judge. Many elderly people are in debt when their spouse dies and the income decreases by half (unless the debt is in both names or there is an estate, the person left is not responsible for their partner's debt in Ontario, Canada). Many Elderly are ill with various health issues which often leads to surgery. Now, maybe I have a special gift but many love showing me their surgery scars and some come close to that nether region of YIKES! Once they calm down and we discuss their debt and I learn more about the reasons for the debt issues, they feel so close and warm to me that they must think it's an honour to show me their scar(s) like I am Richard Dryfuss on the Boat with Robert Shaw comparing shark bites. They feel so happy and dooey-eyed as they talk about the length of intestines that had to be cut away or the gall stones that were taken out that they fail to notice the various shades of green on my face. As for the colostomy bags..yup, I have had clients show me this as well and, in one instance, it filled up while he showed me...I am truly blessed. so what does one do?

A.- Shriek in Terror as if one just saw Godzilla?
B.-Throw up on their shoes?
C.-Tickle the scar?
D.-Politely try and stop them before they show their scar/colostomy bag
E.-Grin, make nice and bare it.

Of course I tickle them! I love being up close and personal....ok did you throw up? No, It's D and E sillies. I have now learned when they are ready to show me I try to, very politely, dissuade them from showing me. I have learned not to outright say "No" because I actually hurt the feelings of one lady so I quickly use the art of deflection and they stop grabbing their shirt ready to throw it up (or unzip their pants) to listen to another wonderful tidbit I will give to them about their debt. If I can't stop them in time, Yup, show compassion and ask how they are feeling since the operation and say they are ready to go. Once they leave, go on Pinterest to look up cute animals to get the image out of your head.

So this is part one of my 3 part series on how to deal with difficult people. I thought I would get the smelly people out of the way first:)

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks-Letters

There are, actually, many films involving letters and I was even thinking some very new films but my heart belongs to the older movies. I have a feeling the wonderful film, “Can You Ever Forgive Me”, starring Melissa McCarthy, will be popular today and it is a worthy film to see. Let’s see which films will be chosen over at Wandering Through The Shelves, here are my 3...

1. THE LETTER-1940

This film, starring the great Betty Davis, is about a young woman living in Malaya on a plantation with her husband. We see, at the beginning of the film, Leslie( Bette Davis) shooting a man multiple times and is, then, arrested. We find out, during her trial, that there is an incriminating letter she wrote and she wants it back. Bette Davis was in top form as one of the best actors during this time and it shows in this film. I have to say that I loved Gale Sondergaard in this film as the Eurasian widow who plays her role to the hilt.


I know I have chosen this film before but I don’t care because it is simply brilliant. I love this film and it deserves all the accolades. You have some great stars from Humphrey Bogart to Ingrid Bergman and the huge cast of character actors that make this film great not to mention the brilliant writing. It all takes place at Rick’s ...his posh nightclub where so many under-handed dealings are going on it’s hard to keep up. One of them concerns Letters of Transit stolen by a petty criminal, Ugarte, played, memorably, by Peter Lorre(his character name is Ugarte not Umgara which is what Tarzan often says to the animals), who asks Rick to hide them. Now, just about everyone is after those letters. We even get a backstory with Rick in Paris who receives a letter from the love of his life saying she can’t go with him and, as the letter disappears amidst the rain, he crumples it as he boards the train. We actually have 2 letters in this fabulous film.


This is a gem of a film starring one of my favourite gals, Jeanne Crain, who is not really known any more but she was quite famous in her heyday and I wish she was better known now. 3 women, all friends, have received letters from the unseen nasty bitch, named Addie Ross, who has told them she has gone away with one of their husbands but has not told them which one. As we watch the 3 women we see their lives with their husbands and how each husband can’t tell what a bitch this ....bitch is. Kirk Douglas is one of the spouses who seems to love his special record, from said bitch, he receives for his birthday than anything else. I will add that Linda Darnell plays another wife, (Ann Sothern is the third), and she is great in her role as a jaded woman from the wrong side of the tracks. It is a great study on characters and marriage and the heartache one person can create.

Which 3 would you choose?

Monday, May 13, 2019

Birthdays Galore in May

I have several birthdays in this month...their parents were very busy 9 months before... there must have been a blackout. Gosh I love using ...:). There are 6 birthdays and, if you count mine which is June 2, it would be a total of 7. My parents were busy little beavers too. Obviously, card making is on  the agenda.

Colour Bursts, Water, Velvet, Stickers, Crystals, Iridescent paint, pop up dots, glue, stickles, scissors.

Addicted to Stamps- Photo image-all in the blues
Stamplorations-Bloghop, "Things With Wings"
The Fairy & The Unicorn-Anything Goes

This card is for my hubby whose birthday is on May 25th and, like me, his favourite colour is blue. I wanted to show richness so I took some blue velvet paper cloth for the backing. I took basic white paper and I tapped 3 colours, from these small plastic bottles(called Colour Bursts), onto the white cardstock. When you spritz water onto the white cardstock the colours "burst" into something glorious and no two are ever the same. I had done the same to some extra paper a while back so I took dragonfly stickers and  placed them onto that cardstock paper and fussy cut them out. I used pop up dots for the panels and the dragonflies. I added the flower stickers and the crystals. To finish off, I also added some blue stickles in the background for some glitter effect.

Stamp-countryside, Cuddlebug, embossing folder, gamsol pencils, stickers

The Library Challenge- "Creatures Great and Small"
Stamping Sensations-In an English Garden

This card is for my cousin, whose birthday was actually on May 7. I love colouring and this is the perfect stamp to do it. I took my colouring pencils and coloured in everything and then used this Gamsol clear liquid that I dip a "cardboard pen" into to smooth the pencil strokes and to shade and contour the colours. I decided to create a more spring like look with the light greens and the sky blue. I joined a new card making blog that uses books as the inspiration. This time it is about All creatures Great and Small and, yes there are no creatures but it takes place on the English countryside and the book cover had various shades of green on it so this was my inspiration. I hope this works for an English garden since I think all of England like one big garden.

Glitter cardstock, gelatos, water, stickers gems, rubber stamp saying, black dye ink.

Happy Little Stampers-CAS-Sentiment Only
Crafty Creations-Anything Goes

This was a fast card I made for my friend who has a birthday tomorrow! She loves the sun and always seems to be laughing and enjoying her hectic life. She is married and has 2 kids-12 and and 11 year old (soon to be 11-May 29th). I have these gelatos and, no, it is not Italian ice cream, but crayon style "paints" that you can smoosh right on a card or  smoosh on a craft paper, add water and paint with it. I just  created a rainbow by smooshing the colours right on the card and spritzed with some water  and, using a sponge, quickly shaded the colours one into the other. I stamped the saying in black dye ink, added the flower sticker, gems and the border. Quick and easy

I thought of my mom yesterday and, Saturday, I visited their grave site and planted some flowers. She was my rock and I miss her but I am glad I have my beautiful memories.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks-Movies You Have A Different Opinion After Rewatch

There are some tough weeks and this is one of them since I usually don’t change my mind once I see a movie. I might like it even more than the first time or it confirms that I really did dislike the movie but rarely do I change my mind. To choose 3 movies that fit the theme is frustrating me so it will be interesting to see what the others have chosen over at Wandering Through The Shelves.

Let’s see....


I saw this film when I was a kid and I didn’t really care for it that much. I found it boring and confusing and didn’t revisit the film until 2 months ago. I have changed my mind because I saw the film when I was 12 which is not the best age to see this film. The film stars Gene Hackman as an unlikeable cop who, along with his partner, played by Roy Scheider, investigate a crime organization bringing heroin into the U.S.  from Europe. When I saw it this time, I found it gritty, well acted and quite the thrill especially that high speed chase through New York City. It's based on a true story.

2. HOME ALONE-1990

 I had no desire to see this flick when it came out since I couldn’t stand Macaulay Culkin so when I saw  parts of this film, I rolled my eyes and gave it 0 chance. Years rolled by and from reading other people’s blogs about this movie, I decided to give it a try...this past December, and was pleasantly surprised that I actually enjoyed it especially the bumbling thieves played by the wonderful Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern. We know the story...a family decides to go South for Christmas and, in all the confusion, the little brat, I mean Culkin, is left behind. The thieves think they have it made but don’t realize they are up against this kid. It is funny and  sweet and obviously, the people who made the film loved the Warner Bros. cartoons. I'm still not a huge fan of this kid who is a grown up weirdo now.


I saw this film when it came out and raised my eyes up to the ceiling thinking it was overdone in praise by the critics and people..I still do. How it won the Oscar for Best Picture and Best Actor over The great, "Shawshank Redemption", I’ll never know but it did. Tom Hanks plays a simple minded dolt who follows his mom’s stupid, “life is like a box of chocolates”, quote for his own life and we follow as he go to Vietnam, starts up a shrimp boat business and becomes a millionaire only to run around the country and other such feats. Since that initial mind numbing watch, I didn’t watch it for a long time until I was sick and decided to watch it when it was on TV. I actually found it sweet and well acted with quite a good screenplay that brought depth to this numbnut. I still don’t think it should have won as much as it did but it is a feel good movie.

Any movie you saw again that changed your mind about it?

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks-True Crime

We are inundated with true crime on a constant basis with tv shows centering on actual crimes and we lap it up. I have to admit, I do like watching "Forensic Files" and other shows because it involves the human psyche and what makes evil jerks tick. Sometimes, I must turn it off and enjoy something fun or beautiful because it becomes too much. Now, that being said, I do watch movies about true crime and I have chosen 3 that fit the bill. Check out Wandering Through The Shelves to find out  what everyone else have chosen. Here are my 3...


This is a true story based on the actual serial killer that terrorized Boston in the late 60’s. He preyed on elderly women and this film was about trying to capture the killer. The lawman wa played by Henry Fonda and the killer was portrayed by Tony Curtis who gave a stellar performance as a married plumber who killed. It’s done almost like a docudrama and to great effectiveness without showing gore.


This is a more lighthearted film which is based on fact...for the most part. It stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a young Frank Abignale who has a penchant for fraud at quite the young age. Tom Hanks plays the FBI agent, sans humour, who is hot on his trail for years. You get to see the young Frank deal with the break up of his parents’ marriage and slowly edge into fraud by becoming an airline pilot, a doctor and lawyer. The real Frank even showed up on To Tell The Truth, an old Game Show I loved to watch. This is one film that is a fun watch even though it is about a criminal.


I know, I went with all new movies except the first one which is still a modern one in film land. Anyway, this film is about how the Boston Globe investigated and blew the lid off the child sex abuse and cover-up the priests were doing behind closed church doors. I was taken with the subject since I went to a Catholic school which was hell and, in fact, one priest was having an affair with the mayor of the city, both were tied up, naked, by street hustlers they picked up and both charged with taking money from the bingo my high school had on a regular basis. Oh and my principal, a priest, is now in jail for keeping child porn. Just last night 2 teens were stabbed at my old High School! Oops...I digress, where was I?  Oh yes, This film, although a tough subject, truly sheds light on what was kept hidden for decades and it is powerfully acted. The ending credits left me speechless. It won the Oscar for Best Picture.

I almost went with a couple of classic films but I thought I would go new this time.

Which 3 would you choose.