April 2009 Archives



By Bob on April 18, 2009 6:00 AM | Read More

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I wasn't raised Catholic, but there's a part of me that identifies with the structure and solemnity of the religion.  To us outsiders, it's one part theology, one part theater with a lot of repressed feelings and guilt sandwiched in between.  It's fertile ground for filmmakers whether you like period pieces such as "Becket," or Monty Python's irreverent "Life of Brian". 


The only similarity between "Doubt" and other religious films is that it makes you think.  The minute you believe you have the plot figured out, your own doubt surfaces and you change direction.


"Doubt" isn't a "whodunit."  It's a "did-he-do-it".  As in did the young, hip (at least for the early 1960s) priest have his way with the African American altar boy.  That's what Sister Aloysius Beauvier (Meryl Streep) wants to know. 


She's aided in her quest for the truth by the kind-of-hip but very unsteady Sister James (Amy Adams).  Of course the only thing standing in their way is the irrepressible Father Flynn (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) and the altar boy's mother Mrs. Miller (Viola Davis who goes womano-a-womano with Streep in an Oscar-nominated performance).


This is an adaptation of the brilliant Broadway play by John Patrick Shanley, so be prepared for some great dialog.  Cars don't crash and tanker trucks don't explode, but Streep and Hoffman clash in a Catholic battle of the titans that will have you hanging on every syllable.


Streep uses her words like a prize fighter and lands every punch with Ali-like precision. Hoffman's Father Flynn is a worthy adversary in the squared circle.  He may be bloodied, but always unbowed.


I'm no theologian, but I believe the biblical message of "doubting Thomas" is that it's OK question.  In "Doubt," questioning isn't just OK, it makes for some terrific entertainment.


The Boomer Brief recommends NetFlix (www.netflix.com) for your movie rentals.  The monthly rental packages start at only $4.99 - and you can cancel at any time.

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Daily Distraction

Top Ten Country Songs

By Bob on April 14, 2009 6:00 AM | Read More

Boomer buddy Jay Elder gave us this list of the Top 10 Country songs.  In addition to being a lover of fine country music, Jay's an insurance expert with a knack for helping Boomers with their insurance needs.  


Top 10 Country Songs


10.  I Hate Every Bone In Her Body But Mine
9.    I Ain't Never Gone To Bed With an Ugly Woman But I Woke Up With a Few
8.    If The Phone Don't Ring, You'll Know It's Me
7.    I've Missed You, But My Aim's Improvin'
6.    Wouldn't Take Her To A Dogfight 'Cause I'm Scared She'd Win
5.    I'm So Miserable Without You It's Like You're Still Here
4.    My Wife Ran Off With My Best Friend And I Miss Him
3.    She Took My Ring and Gave Me the Finger
2.    She's Lookin' Better with Every Beer


And the Number One Country Song.... 


1.   It's Hard To Kiss The Lips At Night That Chewed My Ass All Day Long


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Kathleen Edwards - Asking for Flowers

By Bob on April 13, 2009 3:17 PM | Read More

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If you haven't discovered Kathleen Edwards by now, you're in for a treat.  This Canadian songstress is possibly the best singer-songwriter to come out of Canada since Leonard Cohen walked out of Quebec. 



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Don't Try This At Home

An IPod Fit for a Queen

By Bob on April 13, 2009 8:30 AM | Read More

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By now, you've probably heard that President Obama gave the Queen of England a sterling silver IPod while attending the recent G20 Summit in
London. Music taste aside, why on earth would anyone think an IPod is the perfect gift for an octogenarian?

Would you give one of your parents a complicated electronic device as a present?

Not me!

That's what happened to the Queen. Here's a taste of what she got on her pre-loaded IPod:

  • "Some Enchanted Evening"
  • "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend"
  • "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes"
  • "Getting to Know You"
  • "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face"
  • "Maria"

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Here's the Dish

Hot Ham Sandwiches

By Charlotte on April 13, 2009 6:00 AM | Read More

Bored with your leftover Easter ham? Give it new life in these easy, sure-to-please subs. 


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Don't Try This At Home

Larry the Cable Guy: Visionary or Genius?

By Bob on April 1, 2009 10:48 AM | Read More

As Boomers, we've seen the hip fade to hilarious so many times we've lost count.  We were the first to use the hula-hoop for God's sake.  Now it's back in our living rooms thanks to Wii Fit.  Everything old is new again, which means there's hope for me yet.  There's also hope for Larry the Cable Guy and quite possibly the world as we know it.

Larry the Cable Guy.jpg 

Larry's shtick is that he's a redneck who ends just about every sentence with "Git-R-Done!"  DELIVERANCE stereotype aside, Larry penetrates (sorry, Ned Beatty) much deeper.  By holding up a mirror so we can see ourselves and the world around us.


Here's what I'd like to see.  Larry the Cable Guy tackling the current world situation.  It might go something like this:

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Red Thong Strong: Girlfriends Little Secrets to Smoothing Lifes Panty Lines
Guest Room

Diabetes-Friendly Chicken Burrito Bowl

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By Laura Cipullo and Lisa Mikus, authors of Everyday Diabetes Meals
Image credit: Colin Erricson

Prepare your own Mexican quick fix with this Chipotle-inspired bowl. Carbs are moderated by filling the bowl with beans, extra veggies and chicken. No need for rice, since the beans count as carbs.


If you love tomatoes, increase the quantity to 1/2 cup, but note that the carbohydrates will also increase.

If preparing this recipe for one person, cut all of the ingredients in half. Or simply prepare the full recipe up to the end of step 2 and store leftover chicken and vegetable-bean mixture in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat in the microwave on High for 1 to 2 minutes, or until heated through, and continue with step 3.

Health Bite: The iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper and zinc in black beans help to keep bones strong and healthy.

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Playing Favorites

Windy City

It's been almost 18 years since Alison Krauss gave us a solo album, but the wait is over with Windy City. The release (her fifth solo studio album) features ten covers of classic songs (and some bonus tracks) she picked with producer Buddy Cannon.

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