Colored.

Whose idea was it to colorize classic movies and television shows anyway? Today marks the DVD release of the first season of “Bewitched”. It’s being released in two sets – one in the original black and white, the other with colorized episodes.

I watched the colorized episodes when they ran on the Hallmark channel a couple of years ago. They don’t look bad. They look much better than most colorized media. Back in the early days of colorization when Ted Turner colorized the first season of “Gilligan’s Island”, it was downright painful to watch the end result. With these colorized “Bewitched” episodes, they look almost natural, but there’s some inconsistencies that you can’t help but notice. For example, if you watch a couple of episodes in a row, you’ll notice that Samantha wears the same dress, except it changes color from episode to episode. Also, even though Endora’s robes were shades of green in the later color episodes, in the early episodes they were shades of purple and lavender. However, the colorized episodes show them in various hues of green.

Another thing that I’ve always noticed with the colorization projects is that when a character opens their mouth, their teeth and tongue are always in black and white. Was their breath so bad it knocked the color right out of the rainbow? I don’t think so.

Part of the charm of the classics is the beauty of black and white. Just because we have the ability to colorize these old films doesn’t mean we have to do it. What’s even more appauling is that while I wanted the black and white DVD set of Bewitched, it couldn’t be found at any of our local retailers. In fact, the kid at Circuit City asked, “Why would you want black and white anyway?” Thank the universe for yesterday’s dream/spiritual awakening, or else I would have gone off on him.

Badge Of Status.

I’ve noticed that over the past couple of years or so it has become a status symbol in these parts to have a handicapped emblem hanging from your rear-view mirror. I somewhat understand the concept of the handicapped sticker. You have difficulty navigating from a normal parking space somewhere in the back 40 behind Wal*mart to their front door, so you get a sticker to get a parking space reserved for those with special needs. These spaces are strategically placed near said Wal*mart, usually parallel parked between the two greeters. So you go to the local city, village or town clerk, usually named Lola or Marilyn. She has glasses with lenses the size of the window over your kitchen sink. She snaps her gum, you show her your “ailment”, and voila, instant handicapped sticker.

The problem I have with these stickers is that it seems like they are appearing on everything and anything that resembles a vehicle. For example, today I saw a woman bound out of an SUV in seemingly workout attire (orange sweat top, pink sweat pants). Her Hummer II was huge, her hair was huge, her attitude was huge and she sprinted to the front door of the Wal*mart like some knock-off suburban superhero. The only ailment I could detect was the possible asphyxiation from really cheap perfume.

I hate to pry but I can’t help but wonder why in the world this woman has a handicapped sticker. Is she going to go postal and whip out a recently purchased pistol? Is she like Sybil and could change personalities at any given moment, causing her to abandon Wal*mart and head to Target? Did she sprain her ankle trying to jump out of her ridiculously sized vehicle?

I understand that there are folks out there that don’t move like they used to and really do need a handicapped sticker or license plate. They need to utilize a cane to walk. Their passenger uses a wheelchair. And they deserve the respect of a handicapped sticker because they’re out there living life to their fullest.

But to be stuck behind a Volkswagen, that is being towed by a boat, which has a jet ski mounted to the roof, which is being towed by a 30-foot Winnebago all punctuated with a set of handicapped plates is just plain wrong.

Service People Abuse.

I just know that what I’m experiencing is karma. “What goes around comes around”, isn’t that what they say? Its because that time I almost made the DirecTV help desk person cry out loud during one of my rants about their service.

Today I had to endure the customer from hell. She was absolutely convinced that I had connected her to a party-line and that I was doing everything short of pissing on her telephone cable to make her telephoning experience less than pleasant. She knew what was wrong. She told me what I needed to do to fix it. She told me how to fix it. She just knew that because Verizon is in the process of getting sold (???) they had no interest in investing in the cabling (??) and no interest in repairing her phone service. (By the way, I do not work for Verizon, though I have dreamed of working for one of the Baby Bells one day). I resisted the urge to tell her the best way to fix her line problem was to stick a knitting needle in the electric wall socket closest to her phone jack and make an adjustment that way. And with all the hard earned money her company paid the company I worked for, being our biggest customer and all (she has one residential line, and by the way, her husband pulled the rest of the business months ago to the relief of everyone I work with), I should get my ass out there and get that line fixed. Pronto.

I stayed nice. I did my best to help. I used our motto, “Thanks For Calling.” I even got a tech out there by the end of the day.

After I hung up the phone, I yelled out loud what I thought about her. “That whore is a Bitch Bag!”, I declared to anyone that would listen. My co-workers understood. They’d dealt with the Bitch Bag before.

I’ve learned my lesson. I shall never be rude to anyone on the other end of the phone again, no matter how stupid, rude, ignorant or unfamiliar with the English language they may be. I shall treat each and every contemporary, regardless of the industry they’re in, with the respect they deserve. And when you’re feeling your blood pressure rise because the outsourced fool on the other end of your computer support call is acting like they have no idea what a computer is, just remember…

You could be the Bitch Bag in a blog entry some day.

Talk Your English Goodly.

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the 21st century. You are witness to the complete and utter destruction of the American English language. The internet, with all its methods of high-tech communication, is slowly destroying our language. The slang “Have Fun” has become “1/2Fun”. “Are you having a good day?” has morphed into “How R U?”. There’s the cryptic “C U l8r.” Then we have one of the most notorious mispellings known to man, “loose”, as in “I want to loose a few pounds.”

Criminy!

It’s LOSE. L-O-S-E. “I want to lose a few pounds so I have loose pants.”

Good God!

I try to sound like the educated person I believe myself to be when I speak. I like to use big words. I somewhat mimic the cultured accent of Elizabeth Montgomery or Maurice Evans on Bewitched. Not quite British, definitely not Australian, perhaps more like Barbara Budd (from the CBC’s As It Happens) from Ontario, Canada. I throw in a few “eh’s” on the end of sentences. I try to neutralize my nasal, native Central New York accent. In this area, “merry”, “Mary” and “marry” all sound the same, like “Mary”. It helps to scrunch your nose a little when you say it. Even though I live on the eastern side of the state (decidely “soda” territory), I’m not afraid to employ the more whimsical “pop”.

I find speaking interesting and I find writing stimulating. I try to do both to the best of my abilities. I make an effort to convey my unique flair for language when I write online. While remaining conversational, I like to utilize complete sentences and spell out words in their entirety. I’m blessed with the ability to type very quickly and I use that gift to my advantage by making proper use of capital letters and employing a full set of punctuation. After all, CAPS LOCK is a privilege, not a right.

I don’t expect people to communicate via sonnet. I’m not having visions of bloggers writing in haiku or limerick while composing their entries. I even overlook spelling and occasional grammar errors. Lord knows I’ve had my share of them. Just make an effort. Utilize all the letters of our glorious alphabet and write out complete words.

And please remember this: “You want two desserts while dining in the desert.”