Quote of the Day: Mick LaSalle

In the movie section of the Sunday SF Chronicle Datebook (of May 31), a reader asks movie critic Mick LaSalle:

Dear Mick:  To what extent do you think our expectations going in to see a film color our experience of it?

Mick L:  Positive expectations can buy a bad movie about 20 minutes of audience indulgence, tops.  After that, it’s on its own.

Self brings up this exchange because earlier today, she had lunch with Dearest Mum (In-n-Out Burger, on the basis of Tom Hanks’ enthusiastic endorsement last night on Conan O’Brien), and hit on a plan!  She would take Dearest Mum to see “Star Trek”!  Thereby killing two birds with one stone!

So, to “prep” Dearest Mum, self called about mid-morning and told her that self would be showing up for lunch, with burgers, and afterwards “we’re going to see a movie.”

Dearest Mum:  What?

Self:  We’ll see a movie?

DM:  No.

Self:  Uh.  OK.

Darn!  OK, so the burger part went OK.  Self had to make a Costco run, which is why she thought of In-n-Out.  And besides, she hadn’t had an In-n-Out burger since son was still living at home, and that was years ago.  And besides, last night Tom Hanks was just going on and on and on about the correct way to order an In-n-Out Burger —  really, it was a whole routine, which reminded self that back in the early early days, Hanks was once-upon-a-time known as a comedian.

But, after self had rushed over to Burlingame, where Dearest Mum was staying with a friend, and after she had distributed the burgers, fries, and lemonade, self found herself keenly disappointed in the burger experience.  First of all, the burger was thin.  Also, it had no discernible taste (not when compared with burgers at The Counter, anyway).  And self wondered what Tom Hanks could be thinking —  he, who can afford any burger in the whole wide world, even burgers made from rib eye steak, probably —  he had extolled In-n-Out Burger.  And son loves this burger chain so much that when he visits us, he still has to stop by the one in Mountain View, to get a burger.

Now, having had many many many McDonald’s burgers in the course of raising a kid in America, self is intimately familiar with a McDonald’s burger.  And she found no discernible difference between the In-n-Out Burger and a McDonald’s.  Her disappointment was keen.

But, anyhoo, there is still time to recover, for Dearest Mum says her friend is going out tonight, and Dearest Mum would like self to return to Burlingame to have dinner somewhere downtown.  Hubby cannot join us, for he returns home at 9 p.m., this being a hell of a time for start-ups like his.  But, at least he gets to hang on to his figure.  Self can’t believe she’s going to have dinner out tonight, after burger lunch, it’s almost too much.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

Book Recommendations From (Gulp) Costco?!

Self aimlessly pawing through her pile of stuff this morning.  She got five hours sleep, which is great.  Somewhere near the top of her pile is the June 2009 issue of the Costco magazine, which lately self has found to make for some pretty interesting reading.

Here, for instance, are some of the “Book Buyer’s Picks”:

Shogun, by James Clavell (!!@):  in new release, with an updated cover.  Self was crazy about this book in high school.  So was Dear Departed Dad.  For some reason, he identified with Buntaro, the ugly samurai who is married to the beautiful and cultured Mariko.

The Strain, by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan:  Self wonders if the co-author listed as “Guillermo del Toro” is the same guy who directed the “Hellboy” movies?  Well, she loved those.  Let’s give this book a gander.  The plot is described thus:  ” …  an airplane lands at JFK, goes black and later all of the passengers are found dead with no physical evidence of the cause.”  Self thinks there are some vague and ambiguous passages in the above, as she isn’t sure what “goes black” :  the plane?  JFK?  Whatever.  Self loves to go for “dark” in fiction.  Sold!

America’s Best Lost Recipes:  121 Heirloom Recipes Too Good to Forget, from the editors at Cook’s Country Magazine:  “I took one look at the picture of the grand prize-winning Peach Puzzle and knew this was a cookbook unlike any other.”  Contains recipes for such exotica as Corn Dodgers, Summer Squash Soufflé, and Poor Boy Stroganoff.  Sold!

There is also a section in the magazine for “DVD Buyer’s Picks.”  And here they are:

  • Gran Torino:  supposedly Clint’s last movie
  • Inkheart:  starring Brendan Fraser.  ‘Nuff said.
  • Defiance:  David Denby of The New Yorker absolutely loved this one.  And Netflix doesn’t say when self will be able to get her hands on it.
  • The Pink Panther 2:  “Classic antics abound.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

Famous Dearest Mum Quote of the Day

When a woman’s feeling depressed, all she needs to do to feel better is buy herself a new lipstick.


(Pictured:  The famous bronze-y metallic tote, and various splashy additions to self’s wardrobe, courtesy of Dearest Mum!)

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