Chaos Attraction

Christmas Carousels and Princes

2020-12-22, 8:26 p.m.

Vacation Day 4:
Hours of sleep: Over 8!
Exercise: Did it, albeit later in the day and I admit I am losing interest in such. Ruh-roh.
Patchwork sweater: Did four more squares, blocked more squares, but I will probably have to put this project on hold for the next few days. I want to use whatever leftover yarn remains from the butterfly sweater in this one for the remaining squares, but I'm not sure how much leftover yarn I'm going to have left until the sweater is done. So, grrr.
Unfinished object 1: butterfly sweater: Spent four hours making two more butterflies, or figuring out that crocheting larger ones did not look particularly good. I think I need to make one more medium-sized one per arm space at least, and then figure out what I am doing on the back. Now I really remember why I had issues with this project, just trying to find suitable patterns for butterflies to sew on to it.
Dragon: Still not done, though I have most of the pieces done except the body (sigh, the hardest/longest bit). I fear dropping off the gift is postponed again until the 24th. Which, fine, another day to freak out and stall anyway.
Writing: Fuck it, not until some of these crafts are done.

News From Yesterday Night:
So yesterday Mom sent me a package and wanted me to open it right away. (I waited until she called on FaceTime.) It was this. I am deeply amused and was even more amused when I discovered the lights within it. “You just never know what I’m going to send you,” she said. “Isn’t it nice to have a crazy mother?” She also sent cookie mix and a Michelle Obama prompts journal.

She also wants to “drop by” again on Wednesday around 2 p.m. God help me. She said if I wasn’t inside she’d just let herself in...sigh. I said I’ll be in. Sounds like she shall bring booze, at least? Yay, I'll need it. Probably start day drinking in the afternoon.

Other Activities:

Had my therapy appointment for the first time in a few weeks--therapist is doing better, thank goodness. I apparently am the craziest of her clients re: Covid safety, "substantially," sigh. Everyone else is just happily going shopping like it's NBD. Okay, she didn't say craziest, but "you are taking it harder than anyone else." Sigh.

I told her about the upcoming mama drama and we are both stumped as to how to not have things be crazy again tomorrow when she drops by. My therapist was a bit like "why is it so bad if she just drops gifts off in the house" and I said uh, she won't just do that, she'll use the toilet (toilet plumes!), go through the house, start critiquing my cleaning skills, what have you. Also, I do not get any kind of fresh air in here--there's no windows, just large screen doors at the back and that's not going to clear out the polluted air if she comes in at the front of the apartment, fans aren't gonna cut it. I really don't want other people's air in here given those circumstances. Again: if Mom respected boundaries, which she does not....and I really wish I didn't have to escalate to super crazy, obnoxious, flat out mean and rude behavior to get her to stop. I don't want to be a screaming psychopath yelling NO NO NO NO NO over and over again, nobody wants to hear it, it's mean and rude, and especially at this shitty Christmas. Can't we end on a not-awful note?

The rest of it was boy angsting AGAIN, though to be fair, that is my therapist's favorite topic out of me at this point compared to work and mama drama :P I just don't want to be too much, putting pressure on him, asking for well, anything if he can't give it, etc. etc. (I may just run in, drop off the bag with his mom and leave without really trying to talk to him if he's not out, even.) He said no, and as far as I can tell he hasn't changed his mind on that, and plus pandemic so nobody can anyway. "So he said no a bazillion years ago at this point," she said. He probably doesn't have anything to say these days. You can say whatever the hell you want, but be willing to deal with the consequences--well, I'm not :P I'm so sick of being ghosted and pissing people off somehow and not knowing why and all that crap and I don't want to bring it on again because I was being me. You don't really know what's going on, she keeps saying, but good god, I don't think I can ask. Or even spit words out. If you don't do anything, you're not going to know, how are you going to get to know him better if you don't try, etc.

My goal was to at least maintain, or develop more, of whatever we had going during the pandemic. I don't think that's really working too well. It may just not be doable under the circumstances. (This is why I generally can't be friends with non-talkers. He wasn't one before this, but I can't work with this.) I am not happy about my plan to not try with him much any more until in person is an option. I desperately want to be talked out of it. But also, I am out of ideas as to how to connect with someone who isn't up for talking when that's the only option on the table. It seems better to just leave him alone, respect his space, what the hell ever, than be all invasive and then get ghosted for it. We don't seem to be able to connect without in person as an option, so...hell, maybe just wait until it is. Bleah. I am beyond tired of this polite standoff or whatever the fuck this is, but I don't want to be me and ruin it all, either.

I spent the afternoon on Zoom with Meg, doing more crafting, for like four hours. Yay. I did wear my new Christmas dress to show it off and she liked it, and said so to Mom when she called. Talked about crafts, weird spiritual stuff, staying inside during a pandemic, holidays, relationships, etc. etc. etc. She basically says a lot of the bad stuff going through my brain is garbage and I should throw it out. and I shouldn't worry about burdening anyone with my feelings. Which, yeah, but I totally can't. I know what it's like to have people who I don't like like me more than I like them and it was terrifying and awful, and I don't want to do that to someone else, even if this isn't uh, exactly the same kind of situation. I don't know what the bleep this is, though.

God, I miss the days when I liked a guy and he liked me back and we got together within like a month and a half. None of this scared shit makes any sense to me.

Today's Viewing: I am not done writing that up (I got behind today after all the Zooming), so here's some other movies I wrote up, we'll get to today's later since there's a theme.

A Glenbrooke Christmas:
So Jessica is an orphaned heiress who's close with the real estate tycoon grandfather who raised her.

I like this female firefighter: I wished for a job in this department and got it! What did you wish for? "A new pump for the truck." Her coworker is clearly no fun.

"I've been online stalking my mom's childhood home for years." "She really has!" Jessica decides to stay there under a middle/fake name to see if people like her for her and not what she can do for them. Also there's some kind of "wishing bells" there.

Here's a meet-cute for you: she hits him with a car. He's only gently hit, but his packages went flying. He kinda rips her a new one. She also accidentally sets a fire in the cottage. Didn't I just watch this in another movie like two days ago? "Can't talk. Fire." "It's not a fire fire!" Ruthie the female firefighter is already trying to fix him up with "he volunteers at the library and loves kids!" Meanwhile he's all, "was that your first time lighting a fireplace?" "Is he always this serious?" Ruthie: "Yes. It's kind of a bummer." His name is Kyle. She claims to be Jessica Emerson (not Morgan). "I hope your reign of terror is done for the night." "Wait, she caused the gingerpocalypse?" I now want someone to make a drink called the Gingerpocalypse, per "Christmas She Wrote."

"People seem to be very invested in your love life," Jessica says to Kyle. The joys of living in a small town.
"If I told you I had millions of dollars, would you believe me?" He is basically all, of course not, you're too normal. Uh.....
Oh noes! It will cost $10 to fix the bells! Nobody has that kind of money! Jessica could totally just write a check per her granddad, but she wants to fundraise. In the meantime, she's teaching an art class.
"Is this an ugly sweater thing?" "What do you mean? This is my nicest sweater." *winces* "Just kidding, it's hideous." He brings her a "carefully curated" selection from all the ladies in the show to pick from. +You look....awful!" "Right back atcha!" I will say that his ugly sweater is so tame I can't even see it under his jacket. Like I think it's dark red and black? Come on, dude. She at least has some snowmen on.

I appreciate that the show brought up that you can't just raise 10K among members of a small town. Jessica suggests hitting up the moneybags of Brantley, nearby. Jessica outs that her mom used to live here and is about to out her career, and then they are interrupted. Kyle has 'tude about the richies of Brantley. Awkward!

"What greater good is there than taco money?" says a kid.

"I was using my middle name as my last name!" Jessica is totally busted via Google by the lady who runs the art center. You think she would have just let a random stranger teach kids? But what about telling Kyle? He's gonna be mad either way, basically.

"Christmas tree lot is my favorite restaurant." How very 2020.

Somehow they raised $10k, though some girl Jessica knows showed up. And yet that ends up being a total red herring because he had a cop look her up. She points out all the times he dissed people with money and "I knew once I told you, this is what would happen." They break up, and Jessica decides to flee town BEFORE the bells ring.

Jessica keeps doing sketches and then leaving them behind. She left a sketchbook behind, her landlord shows them to all her lady friends, and they are all "We must show Kyle!"
Ruthie brings it to the fire station. "Inside is a little collection of art I like to call "Kyle's An Idiot." I LOVE RUTHIE SO MUCH SOMEONE GIVE HER A MOVIE PLEASE. Seriously this guy is an idiot. "I'm an idiot." "Yeah, you are."

Meanwhile, Jessica can't leave town because there's been an avalanche. "You left something behind." "My sketchbook?" "Me." They come back to find that her grandpa has come to see her instead! Grandpa is also fine with her running the company anywhere with Wi-Fi. He lets her push the bell button. "Make a wish." "I'm good."
This is a cute movie. I always like Autumn Reeser. I'm not so into the guy being a doofus, but ... whatever.

Christmas Comes Twice:
NOT A PORN MOVIE. (Link not safe for humanity, but if you want to read hilarious snark on Christmas porn, feel free.)

"You're an astronomer?" "I....used to be." Cheryl instead reviews grants and is going to take a BUS RIDE home so she can work. A comet she was trying to prove exists got proved by someone else instead. She's gifted a....Santa clock "for someone who's always short on time." HINT HINT. "It's more like a black hole, nothing escapes its gravitational pull," she says about her job. Meanwhile, her sister has bought 500 fondue forks to run a restaurant. Cheryl does not approve.

5 years ago, Cheryl's life derailed, basically. There was a storm, Miss Nelson died, she met her future boss Dr. Phillips, she went on a date with Terrence and kept injuring him...There's also George, her school rival, who is still wandering around wearing his letter sweater and he' old? Oh, he teaches at the junior high. They continue to give each other shit.
"Somebody already found my comet." I only took this job because I was waiting for an astronomy job to open up. "I wish I could live that week over again." Then she finds a random carousel, hops on it, it starts going and....YES, SHE'S GONE BACK IN TIME TO THEIR DATE. She faints upon seeing the no-longer-dead Miss Nelson...into George's arms. She says, don't laugh, but I think I went back in time. He laughs, she storms off, and there is, of course, an ad for "The Christmas Carousel" after this.

Why is George following her? Out of curiosity and concern.... "And when the guys in white coats show up, they might need a hand." I will note that she is literally wearing a white coat, LOL. After visiting her parents (at their old house), she goes to Miss Nelson's and bear hugs her and acts weird. Do you think time travel is possible? Theoretically, yes, I just don't know how. Miss Nelson would love to hear about it...later.

"Santa pancakes" is very cute, actually. I sort of now get a "Peggy Sue Got Married" vibe at this moment. Cheryl tells her parents not to leave Mr. Tibbles alone with the Christmas tree because he breaks the angel. Um, ok. Cheryl wants to duck out on meeting Dr. Phillips (her future boss). She tells the neighbor to fix his rain gutters, runs into Terrence the politician for a do-over. She checks him for other allergies, smart girl. Cheryl vows to "wait as long as possible" for a big observatory job and offers to lighten the load of her teacher. Oh, George Just Happens To Be somehow still teaching science club during break and they walk in and weirdly spy on him. WTF. Cheryl hops in and starts lecturing the kids on choosing wisely. Miss Nelson talks her into helping him with science club. "So how are you enjoying the past?" "I was hoping you'd forget that."

"And here I was thinking I was the crazy sister." Cheryl freaks when she spots Dr. Phillips at the grocery store. She also tries to derail her sister's restaurant plans. Cheryl is also not a born instructor of teenagers, as she uses scientific terms and then says it's easy. "You gonna go back in time and not deliver that lecture?" George says later, and demands proof. She tells him about the freak snowfall. "I love my life. Do you?" he says. "This week, I have a second chance. And I'm gonna take it." She takes the kids to the carnival to talk about Newton's Laws. AW FUCK DR. PHILLIPS FOUND HER ANYWAY. "I was starting to think you and I were destined to not meet each other." Aw MAN!. George won't let her out of it.
"This time, when destiny calls, I am not leaving it to voice mail." Cheryl goes on her date. She has picked a risk-free restaurant with no slippery floors. They talk about how they never quite connected in high school but liked each other. Unfortunately, he likes to talk about networking. And every child is a future constituent, amirite? Well, I guess there's plenty of ways for a date to go wrong in which she doesn't injure the him being a bore/obsessed with politician-ing. "Such a waste of a good chin." George planned to go to med school, took a job in the meantime and turns out he liked his better than she liked hers. That job took me away from everything I loved. "Well, in that case, I wish you the worst of luck." Good line.

This DOES NOT WORK. Dr. Phillips CANNOT BE DISSUADED. "What if I like to take long naps at work?" Even that doesn't work. I just want her to say, "Look, I want an astronomer job and I'm gonna regret it for the next five years if I take yours" already. Likewise, her sister has NO INTEREST IN REAL ESTATE. "I thought I could change things. It seems like I'm fighting fate." George suggests not fighting fate. "There's no one in the world I like arguing with more than you." "That makes two of us."

"You and George make a great cou--TEAM." Bwahahahah, Miss Nelson. Miss Nelson wouldn't change her life if she could. Miss Nelson gives her an ornament and says "I'll be right there with you."

Just as she's about to have A Moment with George, Dr. Phillips demands an immediate meeting. "It isn't the money!" But I won't have time for my own research! He gets it, but thinks "you could make a real difference." "I'm sure they can evaluate the merit of projects," she says, and he says he's afraid important projects will fall through the cracks and other candidates will just be about the money. GUILT TRIP. This is SOOOOOOO Peggy Sue but with science.

She took the job and George is all "and that's it, then." Maybe I can't change the future at all, she says. She apologizes to her sister. She brings cookies to Miss Nelson, saying if she doesn't go to DC, all the projects she helped launch won't happen. Miss Nelson is all, "there is a secret ingredient to this formula that you are not sharing." (Girl, you can date him in five years, you know for a fact he's still single then.) Miss Nelson says to tell him, and Cheryl thanks her for everything.

George: "I just ordered some ice cream, can you hold that thought?" Okay, seriously, George is a bit annoying. That was funny, mind you, but still. Anyway, she finds the magic carousel again, hops on while he watches and...DUH, SHOULDN'T HAVE HOPPED ON. She yells, "George, I think I'm falling in love with you!"

She's back in "2020." George finds her, has been holding on to her scarf for five years. "I heard enough," and ditto, he just had to wait for her to catch up. Then she calls Dr. Phillips and quits her job...or well, goes part time, actually, and he's going to recommend her for an astrology job in the area. I'm not sure how that works, but okay? They go back to the carnival and cuddle on the Ferris wheel. DEAR GOD I WISH I COULD CUDDLE AGAIN. I MAY NEVER GET TO IN MY WHOLE LIFE, Y'ALL.

Anyway, cute movie. VERY, very Peggy Sue, but it works out. I still find George a bit annoying, but oh well. To each her own, I guess.

A Christmas Carousel:

(Look, there's a theme!)

I love Lindy Booth. She’s one of those “walking cartoon” sorts of people, I enjoy them.
Anyway, she is playing Lila, whose dad does restoration. They get hired to restore a carousel in two weeks for the kingdom of ANCADIA (not Arcadia--I’m guessing that didn’t clear legal?), as a Christmas present for a kid. Since her great-grandfather built it, they know it.

“Well, I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed nearly crashing to my death quite so much.” Boy, is this guy good at flirting.
“You must know the prince.”
“Quite well, actually.”
”I hear he’s a lady’s man.”
“Well, that one does get around. I would say he’s more friendly than roguish.”
“Well, that’s what every lady’s man says.”
LOL. Of course this is amusing later when he shows up.

Margaret, the presumed “fiancee” of the prince, calls the carousel a “silly old thing” and “the arts” a “diversion” and their business is a “toy” business. So far she is not coming off well here.

“Well, it would have been preferable if you had mentioned you were my boss. And that you rule the country.” He says his title is a “conversation stopper.” She asks if he’s an international spy and he won’t rule out the possibility. Well, he certainly is the most fun prince this Hallmark season. Most of the time these princes aren't fun (see below).

20 minutes in he says Margaret isn’t his girlfriend and she is all “well, that explains the pickup line.” “It wasn’t a pickup line! I was just being friendly!” These two are a hoot.

“I think I may have jumped to conclusions about you.”
“Dated a lot of princes, have you?”

I should mention that Lila works part-time for her dad in restoration, but during a slow period she got a teaching job, loves it, and is really far more into teaching than the business any more. To that end, she derails and hangs out with the prince, planning stuff involving teaching, getting Margaret’s dad into art, etc. She feels guilty about wanting to get another job as a program director.

“Public speaking and I have never been friends.”
As this review points out: could a prince really hang out in a coffeehouse?

“Of course not, it sounds entirely foolproof.”

Whit’s dad thinks he’s too lighthearted and likes to “dabble” in art and doesn’t have any gravitas or decorum. WELL, YOU’RE NO FUN. Dad also thinks he should marry Margaret.
Heidi, the redhead who works at the palace, suspects his dad is being a buzzkill, as “I did see the aftermath.” “There is nothing of value except love,” she says. “If you get a chance at it, don’t let it pass.”

The prince lets her know that his father wants him to marry Margaret/announce it at the gala...well, he’s trying anyway, she may not be finding this entirely clear. If I get married, I’m going to be expected to ascend the throne, he says. He doesn’t want to be forced to be someone he’s not. “There is a certain mold that one must fit into,” and he’d have to give up art and his sense of humor. THIS IS HORRIFYING. She points out uh, can’t you do what you want as king, and he’s all, it’s not that simple. He befriends women rather than getting involved, “which is why I wanted to talk to you.” It’s only fair to tell her how he feels. This gets....awkward, and she is all “we’re just friends,” more or less.... Prince Whitaker sadly, a bit awkwardly, asks Margaret out.

Wow, public speaking really isn’t his friend. He’s literally reading off cards. TIME TO WING IT. “I’m not actually a very formal person. I spend most of my days covered in paint,” he says in front of Disapproving Dad. Then he has fun winging it. “That’s the first time I’ve ever heard my father approve of one of my endeavours. Even if he said it to you rather than to me,” the prince says. POOR GUY.

Ooooh, the intensity in his eyes when he’s giving her a necklace (tells her to wear it when she wants to ask for something). They think the other is wonderful. AWWWWWWW. Later, Dad says “Clearly you and Lila had an affinitiy for each other from the start.” The art show made him realize he needs someone who makes him shine. AWWWWWWWWWWWW. Dad gives his blessing! Whitaker tackle-hugs his dad. “That was awkward, wasn’t it?” “Not at all.” AWWWWWWWWW. I like this movie! This is like, the most fun Hallmark dude ever!

I hate The Big Mis--in this case Lila gets all upset because Margaret said Whitaker asked her to the ball. Girl, he gave you a heads up about that. Lila decides to run for it after the gala. HEY, DID THE CAROUSEL GET FIXED? I FORGOT TO ASK.

Margaret also isn’t in love with Whit, for the record. He finds it hilarious.

I forgot to mention there’s a plot about trying to figure out what Margaret’s dad’s favorite carol is--apparently it’s a rare one--but they deduce it and make Whit’s niece sing it with like, only 24 hours of preparation, which bugs her. That said, I dunno, it sounds well enough until she stutters and chokes...and then the duke joins in. That does tickle people. “I’ll have you know it takes a lot to crack this crusty old shell of mine,” the duke says, “the manor is yours.” Let’s go tell Lila! She’s gone. Time to Race For Your Love.

Oh, she came back! I guess it worked! She wants to tell him how she feels. AWWWWWWW. “You’re not going to believe this, but it worked.” “What worked?” “The wishing horse. I wished for you to come back.” AWWWWWWWWWW HE KISSES HER IN FRONT OF EVERYBODY AWWWWWWWWW. “I have loved you since the moment you nearly knocked me off that ladder.” “I KNEW IT!” says the niece. Uh....what if I get you a job at that new school I’m setting up? Hey Dad, also want a job? Now that that’s all sorted... we still haven’t gifted the kid yet. Everyone hops on for a go, except for those who are making out in front of it ;)
I really like this one! The prince is a total hoot and they are having fun.

The Princess Switch: Switched Again:

Just to recap: Stacy's a princess, overseeing a baking contest, whereas her "twin" has lost her boyfriend and gained a throne.
Stacy is running royal charities AND a bake shop! Uh.....they let her? Stacy is obsessed with poor Margaret and Kevin and wants to get them back together. Prince Edward just wants to get LAID.

"You look....comfortable" line is LITERALLY STOLEN FROM A COMMERCIAL. "You're wearing sweatpants, you won't date, and you're collecting cats." Stacy drags Kevin and his kid along for Margaret's coronation anyway. They still vibe, but there's also a hot castle employee named Antonio, an old schoolmate, around.

Not that I am an expert on titles, but is a future queen still "Lady?"

"MAGGIE MOO!" "Here we go." Meet the triplet, Fiona. "Must we do this?" "Pics or it didn't happen. Say fromage." "I'm could make it."

Look, I know we gotta extend the brand and they really can't plausibly do Christmas Prince 4 this year so we're doing this one, but where was Fiona to miss the action? "OMG, you're the one who switched places with my cuzzy! You two seriously look like twins." How does Fiona pay her minions? Well, they shoplift. Like a lot. Including fake teeth? There is also a toilet paper joke, which....hey, I thought we were trying to forget 2020 here.

Tony interrupts Margaret's "friend date" with Kevin to propose marriage. I AM PRETTY SURE QUEENS HAVE TO BE THE ONES WHO PROPOSE. "Don't you think he's trying just a little too hard?" says Stacy. Later Antonia shames Kevin for not being a suitable consort to a queen, which Olivia (his kid) hears and squeals on to Stacy. Her idea is to switch places again so Stacy can do the boring business crap and Margaret and Kevin can really talk. "We can't just stop everything and swap lives." Yeah, right. Kevin (for obvious reasons) is let in on this, but Edward isn't, so when he approaches "Stacy" wanting to talk/get laid....uh.... Edward is very dull, but I am feeing bad for him.

Fiona wants to be queen....just long enough to transfer herself a lot of money to a country without an extradition process. HMMMMM, well, I guess.

Fiona says "Loll" for "LOL."

Seriously, there is no reason not to tell poor Edward what is going on, and leading him around by the nose, and telling him stupid lies. I feel sorry for him now. Margaret and Kevin make a snowman. And...."Surprise, it's MY turn to switch" says Fiona as she chloroforms the wrong fake twin. "Your Highnasty?"

Fiona finds out about the switch when Margaret comes in, all happy about Kevin. Actually no, she doesn't figure it out at all, she thinks Margaret is cheating with Edward. Margaret is all....just walking out? "We grabbed the wrong Maggie," Fiona calls to complain.
Margaret goes to Edward for help and reveals herself. Mrs. Donatelli comes in, all mad that "Margaret" has given her the boot and moved up the coronation "to spend time with the orphans."

Fiona breaks up with Kevin again--actually rather nicely for her, go figure.
I LOL'd at Antonio noticing that "Margaret" got the orphanage wrong. He figured it out right off. Also he notices "that tattoo on your pinky." He wants in.
After a bunch of slapstick, Stacy is out and making out with Edward.
FIONA CAN'T EVEN GET MARGARET'S FULL NAME RIGHT AT THE "CORONATION." "Oh dear lord, there are three of them." Antonio is all "Seize her!" at Margaret, and Margaret is all "ARREST HIM!"
Fiona gives a heartfelt appeal, which would almost sell it for me except she's been a brat the rest of the time. Then there's a race to the airport for Margaret to propose to Kevin. D'awwwww. And then they literally get some random preacher to marry them AT THE AIRPORT.

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