Friday, March 20, 2015


I'm just going to let dear Miss Durbin (looking uncharacteristically sultry - she is rocking that Vera West gown) sing us into the new season.  Which started, this morning, with snow.  Bother.

One thing about having a little more time on my hands than usual is that I'm feeling terribly au courant.  I'm all caught up on the news, from the downfall of dear Princess Sparkle Pony's beloved Gay Aaron Schock to whatever it is exactly that involves the appalling Robert Durst.  Heck, I'm even keeping half an eye on Bruce Jenner and his currently rather inscrutable personal journey.  And that's on top of actual World Events, of the kind that once upon a time would have been narrated to us by Walter Cronkite, whose calm assurance I do miss even in the presence of BBC World (having utterly given up on all American news sources, not least because of their fascination with, um... the likes of Bruce Jenner and Robert Durst.  Oh, well).

I'm in the midst of a pleasant entertainment blitz, too, luxuriating in the good fortune that this is Ann Sothern month on TCM and basking in amusing Netflix discoveries.  For example, the idea that I can now watch all of Pee-Wee's Playhouse anytime I want to feels like the height of luxury, not least because each episode is exactly the length of the exercise routine prescribed for me by Physical Therapist Rick (who may not be quite as beguiling as Tito the Lifeguard or Cowboy Curtis, but is nonetheless not without a sturdy kind of charm), which I'm required to do twice daily.

I've also been working my way through The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which is highly amusing if not perhaps quite as clever as it thinks it is, but which benefits enormously from the presence of Tituss Burgess (I've you've never seen his astonishing hommage to Jennifer Holliday, in which he takes on the theatrical Everest that is "And I am Telling You," stop right now and go.  You'll thank me.  But do come back...).  On top of that, Mr. Muscato and I are enjoying evenings with Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries and, at last, we've put our toes into the vast lake of Downton Abbey - good fun so far, even it does feel a tad like a slightly angstier Upstairs, Downstairs (forever for me the gold standard of BritSoaps, having been raised at Grandmother Muscato's with a steady diet of Mrs. Bridges, Rose, Georgina and James, and my very favorite, Lady Prudence Fairfax, whom in a sort of way I still aspire to be when I grow up).

So what with one thing and another, I'm keeping busy.  Another month or so and I'll be, if not quite right as rain, at least ready to wean myself from the television.  I'll just have to presume that the weather cooperates more than it has today.

Not, mind you, that I'm itching to return to the more-than-intermittently vexing world of Gold Handcuffs Consulting International Amalgamated, but too much longer and I'll have turned into one of those people who can actually distinguish among the Kardashians, and that seems very far from being a good idea, don't you think?


  1. Kardashians?!?!? Caro, you absolutely mustn't.

    I gave Kimmy Schmidt a shot and oy. I understand her fish-out-of-water chipperness is the joke, but it's an irritating one.

    Finally, for Downton, I'd go easy if I were you. It's all a down hill slog once they kill off the Turkish ambassador, and that's in the first episode.

  2. I've said it before and I'll say it again: Downton Abbey is Upstairs Downstairs on steroids. Which is fine with me, more bang for your buck! A few years ago I binge-watched all five seasons of Upstairs Downstairs in one week. Such are the joys of being unemployed and possibly insane. At any rate, it was even better than I remembered it, and Downton ups the ante. Sure it's a soap opera, but a fabulous one!

    When Pee-Wee's Playhouse originally aired, my boyfriend and I would often watch it while coming down from the acid we took the night before. To this day I'm convinced that's what the show was made for. Being able to catch an episode whenever one desires is indeed a perk of the digital age.

    Glad you've been spending your time wisely, my friend. I'd expect nothing less!

  3. If I were watching that much television, I'm certain I would have a relapse... Anyway, as Peenee the Wise said - NO KARDASHIANS! Jx

  4. I have a DVD of Ann Sothern's Lady in the Dark television broadcast from the early 50's -- a grainy kinescope that's still very watchable -- as well as a complilation of her Maisie films. Let me know if you're interested and I'll send them off to you. She makes an excellent Liza Elliott even if she's overweight. Bambi Linn (of Oklahoma! dream ballet fame) is her dance double!

    At risk of overstepping boundaries, wasn't the consulting job what contributed to your health condition in the first place?

  5. Oh, Doll, glad that you continue to improve. The TV binges are a favorite of mine. Netflix is a blessing and a curse.

    Our recent faves have been the Brit version of Broadchurch, the Brit Sherlock with Mr. Cumberbatch, and House of Cards. Orange is the New Black and Call the Midwife are also delights.

    If you're taken with Downton Abbey, might I suggest reading along after each episode with my bloggy pals Tom & Lorenzo. They do solid criticism and wonderful (often hilarious) commentary. Check them out over here".

    Do keep us posted on developments. News of any TV discoveries is always appreciated. Sharing of your personal adventures in your erudite and inimitable style so often a delight.

    1. Ah, but did you ever see the original Brit House of Cards trilogy? Now that's television at its best! Jx

      PS Love Tom and Lorenzo's commentaries on Downton, by the way...

  6. Treat all things Kardashian as a modern day Hydra (in these, our modern times, what doesn't get attention gets implants, or it's own reality show).

  7. So glad to hear you're able to sit up and pay attention. Don't let the screen suck you in too deep, though. Even Ann Sothern, and I adore her, can be pushed too far. Please Binge Responsibly!

  8. I'm glad to hear that you're doing well.
    Just as an aside, my first date at the age of eleven was with Tish Sterling, Ann Sothern's daughtrer. We were the youngest guests at a party for the children of movie people. Must have been 1955.

  9. You've picked some winners. We love Miss Fisher at our house and think her police inspector is just yummy. Will they ever consummate their flirtation??

  10. Glad you are coming along and what a happy coincidence an Ann Sothern festival is. Love Miss Fisher and Downton Abbey but have stay joyfully ignorant of the differences between those pathetic Kardashians.

    Also thanks for the lovely performance from the beloved Miss Durbin. Have you ever seen the film the clip is from, Christmas Holiday? It's quite a bleak little number with Deanna as a euphemistically called "roadhouse hostess" and Gene Kelly as her mad dog killer husband with Mommy issues, Mommy being Gale Sondergaard! It's on Youtube in its entirety if you haven't.