Saturday, July 18, 2015

No Purchase Necessary

I have a habit of signing up for freebies, sweepstakes, frequent customer cards, etc.  The result is mainly an awful lot of junk mail and junk email that I send directly to my spam folder.  However, this month, July, has made all of that junk mail/email worth it.  Why?  Well, let me tell you.

As my long-time fans are well aware, July is the month of my birth – which is entirely appropriate …

Ex. A – July’s birthstone is the Ruby and according to Proverbs 8:11 – “wisdom is far more valuable than rubies..” (NLT) … And I am nothing if not a smart cookie (although my cookie probably contains its fair share of nuts).

Ex. B – my Zodiac sign is Cancer the Crab.  I don’t follow horoscopes and such and, while I am usually a pretty happy person, I’ve been known to have crabby moments. 

Ex. C – also regarding Crabs – I adore them… especially the cartoon variety! (I know that isn’t a very strong reason and should be party of Ex. B, but I needed a third one and couldn't think of one and I wanted to be able to use both the Lucy pic and the crab cartoon.)

Now, I’ve long said that the ONLY good thing about summer in general, and July in particular, is my origin.  Otherwise, since I’m not longer a student who has a summer break to look forward to, the calendar might as well go straight from May to October.  I would say June to September, but we can have some pretty hot weather even in those months and Rose doesn’t like the heat.

Any who, it started about two weeks ago, when I received a postcard in the mail from Shoe Carnival wishing me a Happy Birthday and containing a coupon good for $5 off on any purchase in the month of July. 

Then I received another postcard – we aren’t sure how or why I received it, but I must’ve signed up for something somewhere, they had my correct birth month – from three local restaurants (Wolf’s Bar-B-Q, Acropolis, and Highland Pizza something I’d never heard of) wishing me Happy Birthday and containing coupons for each restaurant good for a free meal at each.

Last weekend, Mom and I knocked out the Wolf’s coupon after going to see the Terminator movie (more on that in another blog, possibly).  Then on Sunday, after church, we invited Aunt Marilee and our “adopted family member for the summer or until her mother returns from Iowa and she’s no longer an orphan” Amy to join us at the Apocalypse.  It just so happened that the coupons said that if I (the birthday girl) brought three or more of my friends with me, we’d get a free appetizer!  

Meanwhile, an email from Kohl's - $10 off my next purchase!   And that was on top of my $30 in Kohl's bucks and $10 Kohl's Rewards!  Which was nice, since I was on the lookout for some new work clothes.  

Just today, I printed out coupons from Dairy Queen (buy one get one Blizzards - will come in handy for my traditional birthday Blizzard); O'Charley's (free piece of pie); and Schnucks (free cookie from the bakery).

I also received an email from the Ahh Spa, the place where Jennifer and I go for our birthday massages - her birthday is the day before mine, so instead of exchanging gifts, we celebrate by going out to eat and then going and getting massages.  From them, I get a free aromatherapy foot scrub with the purchase of my massage.  Oddly enough, poor Jennifer doesn't receive these emails, even though she has signed up.  Fortunately, when we make the appointments, she points out that it's her birthday too and why didn't she receive the same email? and she gets the freebie too. 

Anyway, the lesson of this story is that I'm having a great birthday so far! 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

If I Could Save Time in a Bottle

In the past couple of weeks, I have been blissfully living in the past.  Figuratively. 
Flipping around through my cable channels one evening, I happened to notice a channel called “Retro TV” that was airing old episodes of Dr. Who.  Now for those of you who aren’t in the know, Dr. Who is a British TV show that’s been airing (more or less) since 1963.  It’s a show where if the actor who plays the “Doctor” quits, the Doctor regenerates into a new version who looks like the new actor playing the Doctor.  I remember watching Dr. Who with my sisters on PBS – it was on Saturday evenings, as I recall – and they were on the Fourth Doctor by that time (mid/late 70’s.)  He’s the one with fro-like hair and the long multi-colored (or coloured, for my British fans) scarf. 
The sibs went off to college in ’79 (I’ll pause as you do the math of how OLD they are).  So I’m going to say that’s probably why I don’t remember seeing any of the episodes with the Fifth Doctor (1981) through the movie with the Eighth Doctor (mid-90's).  Plus I was in college during part of that, and although I did have a TV in my dorm (sophomore year at least), there was no cable and I could only get whatever stations whose signals made it from Indy to Greencastle.  So, between, say 1979-ish, and about 10 years ago, I was Who-less.  But then, “they” revived the series, life has been Who-filled. 
See the picture of the British fake “Lego” versions of each of the 11 Doctors!
What was my point?  Well, this Retro TV channel is airing episodes from the Third Doctor (circa 1970-74) on the weekends and the Sixth Doctor (circa 1984-86) on week nights.  Why not just air one Doctor and go with it?  I don’t know.   But I have truly been enjoying the campy goodness that was these old episodes, the “special” effects, the cave that it seems that every other episode was filmed.  You get my point. 
After a week of watching Who each evening before going to bed, I was again flipping through my cable channels and I happened upon another odd channel – the Heroes and Icons channel.  This channel airs 2 episodes of Roger Moore’s the Saint each evening.  See, I grew up reading Leslie Charteris’ books about Simon Templar a/k/a the “Saint” - the "modern day Robin Hood of crime" and then on Friday nights at 11:30 pm (after the Avengers) on CBS, I watched the “Return of the Saint” with Ian Ogilvy. 
To me, Roger Moore was James Bond.  But I’ve been watching for the past couple of weeks. My immediate thought while watching is how young Roger Moore looked.  These shows were on 1962-69 (before he became James Bond).  Also, the fight sequences are so obviously faked – I can only assume I’ve been jaded by all the sax and violins on TV.  Of course, the whole it being in black and white transports me back in time too! 
At this point, what with an hour of Dr. Who each evening (2 on the weekends!) and 2 hours of the Saint, my DVR is beginning to fill up.   Aren’t I happy that it’s summer and there’s not too much else to grab my attention. 
So, the next thing I know... last week, I heard that Comedy Central was going to stream the entire series of the Daily Show with Jon Stewart on its website and app starting last Friday (and it's going to take over a month - it boggles the mind, but it is 4 nights a week, about 40 weeks a year for 17 years...) 
Anyway, starting Friday night, when I got home from work, I put my ear buds in and enjoyed old episodes from 1999.  Again, it’s a shock to see how young these people looked!  Over the weekend, we got to relive the build up to the 2000 election.  It struck me particularly funny, when announcing Donald Trump’s announcing his run for the presidency,
Stewart’s jokes were oddly similar to the jokes he used just a couple of weeks ago when Trump announced his run for the presidency.   This week, we’ve been reliving the zaniness that was the year 2000.  One painfully ironic moment being when Bush, in a campaign speech, claimed that if Gore were to win "we'd be in a war within a year."
Anyway, as I’m typing this, the episode for Election Day is coming on.  I can’t wait to see who wins!