Showing posts with label Outofshapeworthlessloser. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Outofshapeworthlessloser. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

What I Learned On My Spring Vacation

Okay, it's not exactly spring and, it wasn't exactly a vacation because, since I am now retired, every day is a kind of vacation, but Hubby and I left town and traveled back East to Richmond, Virginia to visit family, and it was a total of 12 hours in the air round trip.  I am not a fan of flying, especially for that long, so what does one do with that much time on one's hands? 

I binged and I read!

***The Binge***

One Day (2024)

A 14-episode British series that follows Emma and Dexter on the same day for 20 years - from graduation from the University of Edinburgh to...well, you will just have to watch and find out.

Emma (Ambika Mod) is a serious, hard-working, top-of-the-class, but sarcastic young Indian woman who meets Dexter (Leo Woodall, who you might recognize from "The White Lotus"), a privileged, handsome, kind, but rather shallow playboy, who is drop dead gorgeous (that last bit is me talking).  The two "meet cute" on July 15, 1988, right before graduation from the University of Edinburgh and spend the day and night together.  They know that after graduation they will both go their separate ways, which they do, but, despite the fact that they are polar opposites in many ways, they can't forget about each other and their lives entwine as the series checks in on them on that same day - July 15 - for the next 20 years.

Emma dabbles in the theatre, becomes a teacher and struggles to find her way as a writer while Dexter becomes a controversial TV presenter (that's a TV host to us Americans) on a not-very-important TV show (it's a video game review show) and struggles with family issues, unemployment, drinking and other self destructive tendencies. But both find other loves and remain friends and confidants, always coming close to getting together, but the time never seems right. Will the time ever be right? 

Created by Nicole Taylor and based on the novel by David Nichols, this is one of those opposites attract tales where two young people meet and are attracted to each other, but it's never the right time to be in love.  You watch because you want to know if they will ever get together. It reminded me of "Normal People," another series I loved.

The series takes place in various spots around England with some other exotic locales thrown in, the throwback to the 80's and 90's well done, the music is emotionally and pop culturally fitting and the two actors are attractive and engaging, especially Woodall, who is, ahem, did I already say?...rather delightfully handsome.

And if you think you don't need to see this because you saw the 2011 movie version, and especially if you didn't like the movie, give this a chance. This adaptation, the actors and the episodic format works much better to bring this love story to life and let you get to know these characters, and you will enjoy spending time with these characters on every one of those days.

"Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.” - Charles Dickens

Rosy the Reviewer says...a little bit of a Gen X mashup between "Same Time Next Year" and "The Way We Were" that all ages will find charming and a reminder that no matter what happens, value each day.  Have tissues handy. (Netflix)

Love is Blind, Season 6 (2024)

This is a "social experiment" reality show hosted by Nick Lachey and his wife, Vanessa, where men and women "date" each other in "pods," talk to each other through a speaker but not see each other, and fall in love? 

Okay, I know, I know.  You know me as a serious, intellectual who doesn't suffer fools, right? (lol) So what am I doing watching this show? Well, like all of you, I have my weaknesses and dating shows is one of them.  I know you are judging me, and I totally understand because when I was in college, I was totally enamored of a philosophy major who I thought was just the smartest and deepest man I had ever met.  But then he told me that his favorite movie was "The Love Bug," and that was it. I lost all respect for him.  So go ahead and judge me.  I totally understand. BUT, here is what I have learned.  "Judge and ye shall be judged," right?  Because here I am watching this show, my own little "love bug."  And you know what?  I would bet you have one too! 

Anyway, as for "Love is Blind," men and women come and go out of "pods," rooms where they can stretch out, have a cocktail, eat, exercise, and talk to their "dates" on the other side of a wall.  And they talk and talk and talk and eventually they may or may not declare their love for each other, based on the fact that they are so simpatico from all of that talking. "Here is someone who gets me."  If that happens, they become engaged, and they finally get to see each other in person. And that's when the trouble sometimes begins.  Those who hook up go off on a retreat and eventually move in together.  Some stay together and some relationships go to hell because, yes, we were soul mates when talking but now that I see you?  Don't really want to have sex with you. Uh-oh.  Not fun.  But fun for us, right?

I am not the only person who enjoys this show.

This is a popular series around the world.  The American version is now in its sixth series, and there are also Swedish, Japanese and Brazilian versions, all available on Netflix, and all of which I have watched or will watch because, hey, people, it's fun. And I know those of you who stick your noses up at reality TV because you don't believe it's real, you are right to a certain extent.  There is usually a plan about how it should go, but people just can't help themselves or hide who they really are and no matter what is scripted, something interesting, and real, usually transpires.  

And why do I watch?

I know I was making fun earlier, but the human condition, especially when it comes to love and, er, sex, is very interesting to me. I am just fascinated by how people react to each other, how they say one thing about what they want and then, when the reality sets in, not so much.  Also, I find it interesting what people are willing to expose on camera. To me, these kinds of shows say a lot about the human condition, that whether you are in Sweden or Japan or Brazil, the same issues crop up.  We are all more the same than we are different when it comes to human interaction, and I find that fascinating...and like I said, fun!  

And truth be told, I have to admit, sometimes I just want to watch TV shows that don't require a lot of thinking from me! Don't you?

Rosy the Reviewer says...if you enjoy reality dating shows, this is a fun and interesting one. It's kind of like "Married at First Sight (which I also enjoy)" but less sight.  (Netflix).

So now that you are over the shock that I watch reality dating shows, we can get back to my more serious, intellectual side.  I also read books!

***The Read***

Outofshapeworthlessloser: A Memoir of Figure Skating, F*cking Up and Figuring it Out by Gracie Gold (2024)

The subtitle tells it all as Gracie Gold2014 Olympic Team bronze medalist, the 2014 NHK champion, the 2015 Trophee Eric Bompard champion, and a two-time U.S. National champion (2014, 2016), shares her experiences as a world class figure skater. And it's not pretty.

Gold, with her cute little blonde hair bun, was likened to Grace Kelly and was the face of women's figure skating in the mid-2000's.  She had it all - the looks, the body, the skill. She had great success as a figure skater, but there was darkness behind the scenes. Gold reveals in this candid memoir that she was three people.  She was Grace Elizabeth, the young tomboy who had great athleticism and as a young girl wanted to play hockey; she was Gracie Gold, "America's Sweetheart" of figure skating; and she was also Outofshapeworthlessloser, the perfectionist, who had an eating disorder and suffered from anxiety and suicidal thoughts. 

Yes, there were highs like winning medals, being written up in magazines and baking cookies with Taylor Swift.  But the lows were very low as she faced pressure from her coaches and the powers-that-be within the figure skating community to excel and, as injuries and an eating disorder threatened to derail her, her family was falling apart and her self-destructive inner voice kept calling her an "outofshapeworthless loser."  

Gold goes deep in sharing her story but she also reveals the dark side of figure skating, where young girls are expected to wear skimpy costumes and a smile no matter what. She exposes some stereotypes e.g. all male figure skaters are gay (not true) and the female are straight (also not true - she shares that she is bisexual).  She was also not so happy with commentators Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir whose comments were often less than helpful when she was struggling.

As many of you probably know I am a huge figure skating fan and Gold was always a favorite of mine.  I feel bad for giving up on her when her career took a turn but I am glad she has taken control of her life, come to grips with her demons and pulled back the curtain to reveal a disturbing world behind the scenes of figure skating.

Rosy the Reviewer says...if you are a figure skating fan, you will definitely want to read this, but those of you who also like raw, revealing memoirs, this is one of those. (Check your local library)

***So, what did I learn?***

I learned that when confronted with a long plane ride or even hanging out in a motel room, it is essential to plan ahead and stock up on preferred TV and movie content and reading material before I leave home. I was able to watch those shows and read that book on the plane, because I had downloaded them all onto my trusty IPad, so I had content that needed no wi-fi. You can do that with your phone as well. Highly recommended. Movies and shows are easily downloaded from all of the main streaming services, and you can purchase and download reading material from Apple Books or other sources and/or download books for free through services provided by most libraries.

Oh, and here is something else I learned. I learned that budget airlines have lots and lots of kids on board! 

Thanks for reading!

See you next time!

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And next time you are wondering whether or not to watch a particular film, check out my reviews on IMDB (The International Movie Database). Go to, find the movie you are interested in.  Scroll over to the right of the synopsis to where it says "Critic Reviews" - Click on that and if I have reviewed that film, you will find Rosy the Reviewer alphabetically on the list (NOTE:  IMDB keeps moving stuff around so if you don't find "Critics Reviews" where I am sending you, look around.  It's worth it)!