Monthly Archives: May 2018

The Life of the Party: A Movie Review

Mother and Daughter

The Life of the Party starring Melissa McCarthy was a little wild and even a tad risqué but enjoyable.  In the movie, Deanna (Melissa McCarthy) returns to college to finish out her last year some twenty years after leaving to get married.  Her husband abruptly asks for a divorce and she is blindsided.  But after brooding, she decides to join her daughter on the campus of her alma mater.

Her daughter Maddie (Molly Gordon) isn’t thrilled with the idea but after she gives her mom a makeover, Deanna begins to blend in and even becomes a valued part of the younger set.  Through a host of adventures such as partying, drinking, joining a sorority and even making out with a fraternity brother, she soon forgets her woes as she moves ahead to complete her Archaeology degree.

There were quite a few laughs and there were even some great scenes of revenge when Deanna encounters her ex-husband and his intended.  It was a good way to escape into another world and as I was driving home and reflecting on the movie, it dawned on me that there were quite a few similarities to my own life.

At the end of the film, I recalled that my mother and I had also attended college together.  She was a senior and I was a freshman.  I used to say, “Hi, Ma,” in the hallway.  And later, we taught on two of the same college campuses and marched as faculty together.

So, when Deanna and daughter were clothed in their graduation regalia, I was reminded of how fortunate I was to have had such an amazing experience.   During this month of honoring our mothers, I pause and recall the lines from a famous gospel song that say, “Precious memories.  Oh how they linger!”

Lynn M.                                                                                May 19, 2018

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In A Gilded Cage: A Book Review

Gilded Cage

Rhy Bowen’s In A Gilded Cage caught my eye on the library shelf because of the  woman’s fashionable dress on the cover.  I checked it out and after reading the first few lines, I knew that I was in for a treat.  It was written in first person and that immediately drew me in as I listened to what Molly Murphy had to share with me.

It takes place in New York in 1918 during the women’s suffrage movement and Molly’s tone was light and amusing.  I packed my bags and traveled back into this historical era when women were standing up for the right to vote.

Molly Murphy has her own small detective agency and she is asked to join her neighbors Sid and Gus on a walk in the Easter Parade.  But the Vassar graduates have a secret mission and they plan to wear banners for Women’s Right to Vote across their dresses.

Needless to say, this does not go over well with the police and all of the women are arrested.  Molly, though from Ireland, has the chance to meet many of the prominent women who all attended Vassar College.  Thus, she meets Fanny and Emily who both become the main focus of the story.

The women are surprised to know that Molly Murphy is indeed a detective and her affiliation with the police captain helps them get out of jail without spending a night.  Daniel is Molly’s intended and helps her on several occasions.

Both Fanny and Emily hire Molly Murphy for private reasons.  Fanny suspects her husband of cheating in a long-standing affair and Emily is not sure of her parentage and possible inheritance.  Her uncle is less than honest yet quite wealthy while she struggles to make ends meet while working for a pharmacist.

Then, the tide changes when three of the Vassar women die a similar and mysterious death.  It seems like  influenza but there are other odd symptoms like hair loss and vomiting.

Who wants these society women dead?  What are the ties that bind?  Why are they a threat?  As Molly tirelessly works to get to the heart of the matters, Emily is spared though Fanny is not as fortunate. They Molly and Daniel put their heads together and act as a dynamic duel. The shocking murderer is revealed.

As in life, there are many twists and turns along with false leads but as the saying goes, “There are no secrets in the Book of Life.”  Read In a Gilded Cage and be reminded that all that glitters is truly not gold!

Lynn M.                                                         May 12, 2018

Fresh May!

May-basin

Oh, the beauty of fresh May,
Smells of newness, we all say.

Ah! At last we surely know,
Warm spring breezes make us glow.

Endured winter’s frosty crust,
Now propelled forth with a thrust.

Into this calming, green May,
Planting smiles throughout the day!

Lynn M.                                                                            May 12, 2018

Soft Landings

cushionsHave you ever felt as if you were a juggler as you tried to manage all of the pins being shoved your way? If so, you understand why the jugglers don’t take their eyes off of the pins because one wrong move can cause the whole game to come crashing down!

Life is like that as you try to keep it together or keep on keeping on.  It is comparable to watching a dog jump through hoops or a skilled track and field sprinter clear those hurdles in a timely manner.

But if there is huge slip-up, it’s just like an opponent in a chess game calling out “Checkmate.” You then know that the game is over. There is no other recourse other than to simply start  over, if given the chance.

There is a children’s story called Anansi the Spider and Anansi was prone to trouble; yet, his six sons often saved him.  Each son used his unique gift to successfully rescue their father as the brothers worked as a team.

On one occasion, they had to save Anansi from a huge falcon. After Anansi was freed from the mouth of the bird, he fell towards the ground.  His youngest son, Cushion, then positioned himself so that his father landed on his back.  Cushion offered a buffer and and helped his father have a proverbial soft landing.

So, the next time that you find yourself in the middle of running a challenging race, remember that in the end, the most you can hope for is a smooth landing. Later, when you have time to reflect and let out a big sigh of relief, you can lean on the words of Shakespeare.  He wrote, “All’s well that ends well!”

Lynn M.                                                            May 5, 2018