The X-Files Re-Opened

Tonight the X-Files, the science fiction, supernatural series created by Chris Carter, returns to television on the Fox channel. That’s right. The X-Files will be re-opened. The show aired from September 10, 1993, to May 19, 2002, spanning nine seasons and 202 episodes.

In case you hadn’t noticed, my blog name has always been a kind of spin on this beloved show. The return of the show inspired me to create a new header in celebration. My mermaid is now underwater. I hope you can tell.  

Back in the day, I was a huge fan. I even went to an X-File convention. Yes, I did that! It was in San Diego and there I saw Alex Krycek (Nicolas Lea), FBI Assistant Director Walter Sergei Skinner (Mitch Pileggi) and last, but certainly not least, the genetic mutant serial killer aka Eugene Victor Tooms(Doug Hutchison), you know the guy who could squeeze his bones into sewer pipes. Remember him? He was sitting casually in a breakroom or something. I couldn’t believe the monster was before me. And Krycek? He was smoking hot! I had an extreme crush on him after that convention, eagerly awaiting each episode, hoping to see him once again.

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Alex Krycek, infected with the black oil. Image source: x-files.wikia.com.

The X-Files so inspired me, I even purchased a script at the convention, the first in my possession. Yeah, I was a little geeky about this. This was my Star Wars without the light saber. My Friday nights were built around catching the latest episode of the X-Files and nothing could ever interfere with that, an era when you waited for new episodes and nothing was leaked about them; social media didn’t even exist. Can you imagine?

Fox Mulder (David Duchovnyand Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) were so green. I felt like I was a part of something fresh. I had never seen either of them before and you felt like you, too, were a part of these moments they were experiencing for the first time. They had an edgy, natural chemistry. I mean were they ever going to have sex or what? They kept you guessing. The writing was inventive and intriguing, the stories spooky fun and strange, leaving you with the feeling something could be lurking around you or crawling under your skin.

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Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. Are you guys even attracted to each other? Image source: observationdeck.kinja.com.

Admittedly, by the end of the series, I felt pretty twisted and turned around with each episode, and had more questions than answers. The movie which later came out, ignored all these questions with no answers in sight, but rather spawned more and more questions. Now, it’s more of a blur than ever. These questions still cling to my subconscious:

  • Whatever was that black oil coming out of their eyes and why did it have to come out of Krycek’s eyes?
  • More importantly, will Mulder ever learn what happened to his sister? Will he reunite with her? On a different planet perhaps?
  • What happened to Mulder and Scully’s son? What a minute, was it their baby?
  • Did the Cigarette Smoking Man light a cigar for Scully and her baby?
  • Are the super soldiers alien hybrids?
  • Are The Lone Gunmen still alive? Do they still believe?
  • Will Mulder and Scully still whip out those cool flashlights?
  • Did Skinner retire from the FBI and flee to a deserted island? Will Skinner be in a good mood?
  • Are the Anasazi Indians the missing link?  Maybe they can commune in the tent again and sweat out all the answers.

I’ve read there are 16 answers we must have from the 6 episodes scheduled to air. In all the pre-hype, I learned that the original theme was based on the How Soon Is Now song from The Smiths. Who knew? Chris Carter requested that  Mark Snow, the show’s music man, come up with something with jangling guitar and the iconic theme song was born! And now, a new theme song will emerge with these new episodes. Reviews have called these new episodes a little overstuffed and devoid of all their previous charm, leaving new watchers wondering what all the fuss was about. I’m just thrilled they’re back. 

As for me, my decision to discontinue cable prevents me from watching tonight’s episode. What?! Perhaps I will wander into a Best Buy searching for a new TV and just accidentally turn to the Fox channel. Or just maybe I’ll binge-watch previous seasons. That could be a whole new experience. Just maybe I could put the pieces together better, not having to wait so long in between. The silver lining is I can watch all these shows with my kids. We watched one episode and they wanted to see the next! Now that is something I could never have predicted. Watching the X-Files with my kids, while new episodes are waiting in the wings. It’s golden.

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Not the Flash!

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So, I forgot it takes 25 minutes to get 2.9 miles in rush hour. And it was dark. And RAINING! It never rains. Maybe it was because of the lightning, but Siri malfunctioned. These are her instructions:

Make a left. Then left again. Now make a U-Turn.

She took me into a parking lot. Oh, my god, she’s a lunatic! What kind of directions are these?

I don’t do lost well, especially when it’s dark. And raining. I wasn’t necessarily in brand new area, but one what that always confuses me and I haven’t been there in a long time. Now, I remember why. It’s a maddening place to be lost in. You know those intersections that branch off into six different directions but there are no turns. If you miss the veer right and quick to the right again, you’re screwed. That’s the first thing that happened.

By the time, I got myself turned around after several lefts and U-turns, I have the right street but I turn the wrong direction.

I nearly got myself killed in the process on this dark, stormy night. I was the deer in headlights. Lots of headlights. The road splits and I felt like I was facing ongoing traffic, so turned around and disoriented. In the middle of the intersection, I see a whole mess of cars with headlights pointed at me and above me, the red light! I have no choice but to go through. What else can I do? I see the Flash. No, not the DC character. The camera. It flashed!

The aftermath. I’m 30 minutes late to my first day at a job. My boss, “Why are you late again?”

My first $456 will go the ticket. Oh, please, please, not a ticket! Maybe they’ll notice the look of desperate horror on my face, and tear it up. Not likely.

It’s funny. What’s a few minutes late? Ten minutes, okay maybe 30 minutes. When you’re late, it truly seems like the worst thing in the world even though as it’s happening you coach yourself, talk yourself up, tell yourself you’ll get there and no matter what, it’s still better than dying.

What’s your late story? I want to hear all about it.

photo credit: Electrostatic Discharge via photopin (license)

It Costs How Much?

Remember that scene from I, Robot where Will Smith’s character orders a beer in a diner and it’s like $27? No? I couldn’t find the video or a meme to share…you’ll just have to take my word for it.  When I saw it I remember thinking, Wow, that’s one expensive beer. I hope it never gets that bad. 

Friends, has that time come? Are things that bad? Well, no…but maybe it’s close.

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I did find Fox Mulder in a diner. Image source: doppelvancouver.com

Here’s what I’m wondering. Where do you draw the line? And at what point do you throw in the towel and say “It costs this much” and I’ll pay it.

Paying for The Big Screen

I already accept the fact that watching a movie in a theater with my family with popcorn and one drink to share will cost approximately $40. Rounded up. Don’t you always round-up now? This is for the matinee price.

2 x $7.25 = $14.50 (kids)
2 x 7.75 = $15.50 (adults)

Refreshments = $9.75

Total = $39.75

If we miss the matinee and go to a later show, add another $10 for a grand total of $50. We can never seem to make it on Bargain Tuesday, which would be the smart thing to do.

The cheap alternative is to stay at home and watch Netflix. Simple, right? This requires choosing a family friendly movie everyone can agree upon that is not a complete waste of time. Inevitably, we end up watching a movie we’ve never heard of before and a half hour later decide it’s so awful we end up switching to another episode of Bob’s Burgers. Sometimes The Big Screen is simply easier.

Concert Tix

Speaking of big screens, my sister asked a few friends if they had wanted to see The Rolling Stones in their last concert tour. Ever. Many of them had already seen them, but still. It was to be their last. $300 for nosebleed seats. Hmm…

Well, they do have those big screens? Would you pay it? They didn’t. No takers. Big screens or not.

Simple Things

But I’m not necessarily taking about concert tickets. Let’s face it. Those have gotten pricey. What about the simple things in life that maybe don’t cost as much, things we think we can afford?

The other day, I took my son to a yogurt bar. You know the self-serve kind, where you decide how much, with a dizzying amount of tasty toppings available to add to your creation.

While I am being very mindful about how much and what, my son had lost all sense of time and place, and piled spoonfuls of crumbled brownies, chocolate chips, gummy worms, and pirouette cookies, and last but not least, marshmallow sauce onto his towering, yogurt mountain. Yes, it was an extreme yogurt creation.

Extreme Yogurt Creation + Mindful Half Cup = $16.59!!

It’s not like I live in New York City or anything. Instead of paying for it, I wanted to throw it back in the face of the guy at the register. I know he’s not to blame.

My son urged me, “C’mon. Let’s just get out of here.”

Nowhere in the store was the price of the yogurt listed. It was like their little secret. I asked and found out it cost .59 per ounce. Okay, my son got too much. It’s noted.

We left after my son ate half of his and had a tummy ache. That place – Oopa! Yogurt Bar really should be called Oops! – It Costs Too Much. We’re not going back.

We could have gone to Costco

For those of you who are unfamiliar, Costco is a huge warehouse full of bulk food, as well as household and recreational items to drool over and gawk at while you buy necessary bulk items only available at Costco and can’t possibly fit in your refrigerator, and you furthermore stuff more food items you just sampled into your cart you never planned on buying in the first place.

Here’s a tip: If you’re uncertain how much you’re spending at Costco, just count up the items and multiply by 10:

10 items x $10 = $100

It’s approximate, but it works like a charm. Unless, of course, you want to throw a Sheepskin rug into your cart. I’ll take Sheepskin for $100. Lovely. You can do that math.

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It’s softer than any bulk item and will last longer, too.

But where was I? Oh, yes. You can also get a frozen non-fat swirl, that’s chocolate and vanilla, for $1.35. What a bargain!

Who needs toppings?

With the membership, Costco will also get you the cheapest meal in town. You can get a Hotdog with a Drink for $1.50.

For cost savings, you could always go to Costco on your way to a ballgame. As a kid, I often went with my family to Los Angeles Dodger games. It wasn’t really a big deal. We showed up, bought tickets the day of, had ourselves a Dodger Dog, did the 7th Inning Stretch, had a wee bit of traffic and drove home.  Simple.

These days…not so simple. The nearest pro team is the San Francisco Giants. Let’s just say, we have yet to go to a Giants game. It looks something like this. Cheapest seat is $17/ticket. That doesn’t seem too bad, although that’s assuming those seats are available, and you can spend a lot more. Let’s just say you get these. So for a family of four it will cost:

$17 x 4 = $68 (to sit)

Well, you’re gonna have to eat. Unless you can get the Costco meal deal before the game, and let’s face it, that’s not the same thing as eating a hot dog in the park. So, what will that cost you…

But, hot dogs? Who wants hot dogs when you can eat “Dungeness crab between two slices of garlic butter-brushed grilled sourdough,” Caribbean BBQ, and pizza from the best pizzeria in America. How can you not eat that? Do we even ask what that costs? You can’t miss out on this. Did I mention this is only the “Center Field” concessions?

There’s parking and since you traveled maybe you get a hotel, because the traffic most definitely will be bad. I’ve lost track of how much this costs…and beer, probably $27/beer.

Who cares at this point because you’re at the AT&T park watching the Giants play baseball. Aren’t you just happy to be alive?

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$27 a beer? Possibly. Image source: sf.eater.com

Or you could stay at home and lay on your sheepskin rug. That’s sounding like a cheap option.

Has your nose ever bled in a nosebleed seat? Do you pay for the big screen? What does a beer cost in the ballpark? What will you pay for no matter what?

Walking Alone with Nature

This past weekend, I desperately needed to breakaway from the walls of my house. I can be a slave to my computer if I allow myself. My back aches from all the sitting I do. It was high time I stretched my legs. I pleaded with my family to join me on a walk to see a waterfall. They declined. I know, right? Apparently, they are all addicted to their devices.

I threw a fit. I was exasperated that they still didn’t want to join me, hardly in the mood for a nature walk, but I decided to go anyway.

So my journey begins. Alone. I ventured forth to the Hidden Falls Regional Park just outside Auburn, California. I took the Poppy Trail along with many other park visitors. Hidden Falls proved to be popular destination.

Shortly after arriving at the Hidden Falls Regional park, after calming myself, I sent my family this picture:

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Late afternoon and the weather was perfect. California is green for a very short period of time.

I was going to attach a spiteful message like, “Wish you were here.” It was “not delivered,” as cell phone access is limited. I suppose that was the whole point of being here, was it not?

Although these photos appear to be quiet and calm, I’m only fooling you. I was hardly alone. These trails were bursting with activity. Families, couples, all had the same idea I did: to spend time with nature. Just you and the trees. Ahem. I had to pause for people to pass to snap photos of isolated stillness.

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Oh, which path to take? The many visitors steered me on the right course.

Many walked dogs; big dogs, little dogs, dogs in little, pink jackets, moving their little legs up the hills quite speedily. I thought, if a dog can do it, surely my kids can. Sorry, I have no video to show you.

I considered getting a dog. I considered renaming my blog name to “The Lonesome Traveler.”

I only counted two other people who walked alone among the various groups; one was a runner, the other, walking with sticks. So, both were utilitarian, walking with purpose. Not like me, aimless and taking photos.

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There’s me now (my shadow) snapping a photo of the water that I will eventually see fall.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind spending time alone. I rather enjoy it. I had wanted a family outing. As it turns out, spending time alone was exactly what I needed.

Could the light be more perfect?
Could the light be more perfect?

I can go at my own pace and stop to read signs if I want. One sign mentioned that California is home to more than 5,000 species of plants. But did you also know that 2,000 of them are invasive?

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Non-native Periwinkle (Vinca minor). A foreigner. Who knew?

I felt my head clear, less constrained. Thoughts float through me. The subject of a post reveals itself: writing and editing in the digital age. It is sure to be riveting. It takes so much to get away.

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Up a hill to what looks like a secret meeting place of the druids, most probably after hours when the place empties out.

At last, the waterfall. I watch the water pound the rocks, as people snap photos. We all snap photos together to capture the moment.

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People and nature together for an afternoon. Note the shadows.

But some things you have to see up close. You have to be there.

Note to my East coast/Canandian friends: I’m sorry. I can’t control the weather. Just remember that California is in a terrible drought.

Those Dishes Were Clean

Good day! It’s Bumble Tuesday. Of course, a Bumble can happen any day of the week. Today just happens to be Tuesday…

For today’s Bumble I will begin with some background. Walking Dead fans out there may recall this scene from season 4 (and if I’m spoiling anything for anyone, please just plug your ears?).

Remember this scene from The Walking Dead when Beth and Daryl go to the country clubhouse together, and Beth desperately wants to try her first alcoholic beverage ever before she dies? If you watch the show you know that anyone can die at anytime. Don’t get too attached to those characters. Beth finds peach schnapps and looks for a glass, among the carnage, the zombies, the blood and the guts. You know, the usual. While I watched her, all I was thinking was that Beth was not going to find a clean cup! And those cups she handled were disgusting.

Just so you know, cleanliness is important to me.

And now on to my Bumble…

I’m sure you all know this scenario. The dishwasher is open, filled with dishes that look practically clean. Practically, right? An instinct kicks in that has me second-guessing their status of clean or dirty. So, I turn over a few cups and dishes, and decide that yes, indeed, they’re perfectly clean.

I begin to unload the dishwasher and return dishes, cups, and silverware to their rightful place in the kitchen, but I am interrupted.

Stage Left: Enter child requesting and demanding milk.

Child: Mommy, I need milk.

A glass of milk is provided.

Child:  Mommy, this glass looks dirty. There’s spots…or water…Look!

Mom: It looks fine. It just came of the dishwasher. It’s clean.

Child exits, disgruntled, but gulping the milk.

Downstage Right: Husband saunters into kitchen.

Husband: Those dishes are dirty.

Me: Those dishes were clean. Twenty seconds ago. No, really. I checked—

But I have to double-check now. I turn over a few dishes in the cupboard, and the second dish I observe is stained with a food substance resembling chili.

Friends, this is what my dishwasher looked like when this happened:

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Right?

Okay, okay, I can’t fool you. These are clean. I’m not going to show you guys dirty dishes. Yucky! Would I subject you to that? Just know they practically looked like this.

I turned over the wrong dish in my dish analysis is all.

So, now I realize I gave my poor son a dirty glass. He was right all along. Additionally, I’m experiencing that limbo of not knowing what is clean and what is dirty in my kitchen, and that I must wash everything. Everything! I try not to panic.

Me (to Husband): Should I get a new glass of milk for our child?

Husband: He’s okay. (reading paper)

Me: No, we don’t want to waste his precious milk.

Stage left: Son enters with empty glass.

Child: More milk, please.

I refill his milk…in a new, clean glass. Of course, I did!

Do you drink out of dirty glasses? Have you ever eaten off dirty dishes and not known beforehand? What did you do? Have you ever been to a dinner party where they served food on dirty dishes? I sure hope not!

photo credit: bowls via photopin (license)

Goldilocks broke into my blog…

Guys, look what happened? Would you just look at what’s happened to my blog?!

I can only assume Goldilocks is behind this. Just last night, she was over for a bowl of soup and she fell asleep in my bed. AGAIN! But, I fell asleep, too, and I think she must have slipped something in my drink, because the next thing I knew, it was morning and she was gone. I logged into my blog and this is what I found. Goldilocks is a HACKER!

Am I in a time warp or something? The Bumble Files? Didn’t I change the name of my blog once or did that even happen? Now, I don’t even know. I lose track of time when I hang around Goldilocks. She has that effect on my me. What year is it again? 2013? Did I miss a year?

Who does she think she is changing my blog without consulting me first? First let me catch my breath, as I’m just seeing all of this for the first time.

Let’s take a look around.

What in the world is this header? A pink snake? Interesting…

Hmm…I see a new picture on the sidebar there. I’m a Work In Progress, huh? That’s all she can come up with? After everything I’ve done for her?…The late nights, the soup, ALL THE SOUP. You’ve heard she’s a picky eater, right? All true. And letting her sit anywhere she wants, usually in my favorite chair, which you know, you do so at your own risk. I mean, look at her latest disaster. LOOK at this! I know she sat in this chair. I just know it.

Goldilocks is an expert at breaking things. This is how she left it.
Goldilocks is an expert at breaking things. This is how she left it.

She’s whacked! Here’s evidence. She’s a breaker…she’s a hacker. Out of control. Only she leaves things shattered in bits and pieces.

But I daresay, this blog is kind of growing on me. It’s colorful and bright. It looks like the address will work fine if you search or type in either amyreesewrites or bumble files. Secretly, underneath AmyReeseWrites, I am still The Bumble Files; I’m just multi-layered now is all. The domain name can stay. Why hassle that?

Goldi has redone my “About” page for the Bumble Files. She’s put in Categories. I’ve never had those. I was nearly approaching the 100 mark in number of categories. She’s been busy! I must give her some credit. I think she just wants me to have a little fun is all. She means no harm…I think I’m just going to keep it!

So, there you have it. I am now THE BUMBLE FILES! Peace.

Oh, and there she is now. I must catch her! Tootles for now.

With love,

Amy
Bumble-in-Charge