Since landing in California last week, I have managed to see three movies in the theaters. Those of you who know me know that seeing movies is one of the great joys of my life. I have seen Cyrus, Knight and Day, and Despicable Me. All of these movies were worth seeing in totally different ways. “Cyrus” was the quirky, touching, darkly humorous Indi movie. “Knight and Day” was the summer blockbuster, and “Despicable Me” was sweet, funny and totally enjoyable. I left that film wanting a fluffy unicorn and a freeze ray.
There is not much difference between seeing movies here versus Prague. Both have succumb to having an endless barrage of T.V. commercials prior to the previews.Yuck. Both countries sell goodies for you to munch on and both have big multiplexes. The differences are in the details. For example, in Prague you can get a large popcorn in either “Butter” or “Ham and Cheese” flavor. Here, you get to douse your own popcorn in as much “Butter Flavoring” as you like. The sizes are different as well. A large in Prague is HUGE – and it amounts to a medium here. The Czechs also don’t offer a full fast food menu in the theater. I was shocked to see that at the AMC I could get a pizza, nachos, and I am pretty sure wings were an option as well. And in Prague almost every theater has “reserved seating” which most Czechs adhere to strictly. Honestly, I have been in an almost empty theater and have been asked to move.
Then there is the ever entertaining land of T.V. Since I had three days laid up because of my foot, I was granted the opportunity to watch more television than I have in years. I watched 90210 reruns, Wife Swap, Regis and Kelly, The View, about six Lifetime Movies and countless other crappy shows. I learned that I still like 90210, I want to kill Elisabeth Hasselbeck and I hate commercials. Nothing ventured, nothing gained indeed.
I also took a trip to The Getty Center in L.A. with my mom, Jenn and three of her girls. It was an amazing space and the gardens were beautiful. Unlike Prague, L.A. actually has some good museums with actual art in them that is worth seeing. Prague’s pitiful National Museum must be the laughing stock of all other museums everywhere. This is a museum that holds an entire floor of taxidermy and genuine REPLICAS of ancient artifacts. I get more joy looking at the artwork my preschoolers make. At least that is authentic.
By far, the most entertaining thing I have done here was have an impromptu dinner with my friend Rebecca, her husband and her mom and mom’s hubby. We chatted about books, politics, wine, food, Europe, travel and female circumcision. Don’t even ask about that last one. Seriously, it resulted in my very pregnant friend (pregnant with twins, by the way – third trimester – a boy and a girl. I secretly hope she names them Brenda and Brandon.) Jumping up from the table and screaming that she was leaving. She might have yelled more, but I was laughing too much to notice. I honestly haven’t had that much fun since I have gotten here.