Thursday, September 21, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

The Big Sick is a quietly funny movie with an interesting history (2017, Rated R, Recently Released on DVD).

The movie stars Kumail Nanjiani, a stand-comedian who plays himself, and was written by Nanjiani and his wife, Emily Gordon. It's loosely based on their real-life relationship.

Pakistani-born Kumail and his family have lived in the U.S. for years, but Kumail's parents still expect him to follow Pakistani traditions, such as having an arranged marriage. They also want him to become a lawyer.

Instead, Kumail has become a stand-up comedian, and he falls in love with an American girl named Emily (Zoe Kazan). Their relationship falters, though, when Kumail refuses to introduce Emily to his parents. He can't even bring himself to inform his parents that he has a girlfriend, and that he's not interested in any of the Pakistani women to whom they introduce him.

Then the big sick occurs. Emily is sick––so dangerously ill that it's life threatening. Will Kumail choose his relationship with Emily or his relationship with his family, or will he find a way to have both?

I like this movie a lot. It has some poignant moments, but ultimately, everything works out (I say this for those of you who need to know that the movie won't depress you and there's a  happy ending, but I don't think it's really a spoiler because I already told you that Kumail and Emily are married and they wrote the movie together; you should also take a look at the closing credits because they include some photos of Kumail and the real Emily, and Kumail's parents).

Kumail's difficulties with his parents are funny because Kumail can find the hilarity in them. Emily's parents are played by Holly Hunter and Ray Romano. I love Holly Hunter. I always think that Ray Romano is playing Ray Romano, but he's okay, too.

The Big Sick earns The Janie Junebug Seal of Highest Approval. This is a movie I'll want to see again when it turns up on HBO or Netflix streaming. For my first viewing, I watched a DVD mailed to me by my friends at Netflix and delivered by my friendly neighborhood mail carrier.

Happy viewing! Beck, will you sing us out, please? Devils Haircut is part of The Big Sick's soundtrack.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Tuesday, September 19, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Here's an error I see all the time, and it bugs the heck out of me:

Let's try and go to the grocery store tomorrow.


Tomorrow you're going to try (at something, I don't know what), and after you try, apparently you want to go to the grocery store.

What you want to say is the following:

Let's try to go to the grocery store tomorrow.

Please don't think I'm singling out anyone because of this error or that I don't want to read your blogs because of it. It's a mistake that's all over the place.

I have good news for you. Next week's TIP TUESDAY will feature a guest post by the man who doesn't write guest posts.  He's The Silver Fox, who blogs at The Lair of the Silver Fox, and he's going to try to help us learn how to write better dialog. His dialog is mighty smooth.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Thanks, fishducky!

Monday, September 18, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Here we are, a week after Hurricane Irma, and all is well.

I have some Irma-related photos for your viewing pleasure.

Favorite Young Man read after the storm was over and we were without electricity:

We grilled delicious steaks:

This branch fell on the deck with quite a thud:

The backyard after Irma: 

The water wasn't as bad as it looks. It's almost dried up now.

The steps to the deck:

A neighbor's tree blows in the wind:

You can't see it in the photo, but the tree split in half at the top.

The pile of debris I created in the front yard:

That's not my car, but you can see that my leaves-and-branches sculpture is longer than the car. I still have plenty of leaves to rake in the yard.

Thanks to all of you who tried to stay in touch with us during the storm and expressed concern for our well-being. I'm sure you can see why I keep saying that it could have been a lot worse:

This is not my house, but it's nearby:

I'm very sorry for the people who have to deal with such damage, but no one died here.

The suffering caused by Irma in some areas is beyond anything I have ever experienced.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Friday, September 15, 2017


Hello. It is I, Her Royal Highness The Princess Penlapee, I mean Penelope (that damn Franklin makes me forget my own name).

We had a big storm. Mom Mom forced me to take potty breaks in the rain. I was angry.

I got back at Mom Mom yesterday. I sneaked out to the living room to take a potty break there. Ha ha, Mom Mom.

When Mom Mom criticized me for making a puddle, I went outside and buried my paws in the mud. Then I came inside, went in the bedroom, and wiped the mud off on the quilt on our bed. I don't mind a little mud on the bed, but Mom Mom hates it. Ha ha again, Mom Mom.

I hated Irma. She was ugly and mean and she hurt many people, but not us. That is because I made her go away. I huffed, and I puffed, and I blew Irma away.

Now I have ordered Human Brother to pet me.

That is all. Goodbye.

I am soft and cuddly.
Human Brother adores me.
Everyone adores me.

Thursday, September 14, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

At last, I'm back online.

I've heard on the news that my city of Jacksonville, Florida, is experiencing historic flooding, but I haven't seen it. I'm not one to go out sight seeing after a disaster.

Irma was different from last year's Hurricane Matthew. The wind was worse (hence the branches strewn all over the yard), but the rain wasn't as heavy––at least not in my neighborhood. Lake Junebug has some water, but not enough for a swim. If you've made reservations at The Lake Junebug Resort, please don't cancel. You can watch Netflix (through the window--you didn't think I was letting you in the house, did you?) now that the internet has been restored, and you'll still receive your gourmet meals. The exercise program has been improved with the addition of yard cleanup.

Franklin is distressed. Since the storm ended, he has wanted to spend all his time in the backyard. He seems to feel that he has to guard the piles of debris. I wish he'd stop and allow someone to steal it.

We were without electricity for 24 hours. Not the end of the world. We read while it was light. Then Favorite Young Man read by flashlight, and I read on my tablet.

Others have suffered far more than we have. It's still difficult to find items such as bread and milk in the grocery stores, but we're fine. Favorite Young Man went back to work on Tuesday. He says some businesses are open. Some remain closed.

I'll provide photos of the crime scene after I finish the book I'm editing and send it back to its author.

And to the man who sent me such interesting text messages during the storm, thanks for the entertainment. We'll keep our little tryst a secret from Willy Dunne Wooters.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Saturday, September 9, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

My policy continues to be the following: do not worry.

We are prepared. We have tons of water and food. We are NOT in an evacuation zone. The only people in Jacksonville (northeastern Florida) who have been told to evacuate are those living in mobile homes and manufactured houses (I suspect people who live at the beaches will receive a mandatory evacuation order at some point). My house has been here since 1940, and it's not likely to go anyplace now.

Jacksonville has six shelters open; two are "pet friendly," but the pets have to be in crates or cages, and owners must have the animals' vaccination records.

Although the national news programs are screaming about Irma––and yes, she has behaved abominably––she's supposed to tire out some before she gets to us. She's been one busy lady. She will need a rest.

A lot of businesses are closed or closing early––only fair to their employees. Some gas stations are running low on fuel, or are closed. Liquor stores appear to be doing a brisk business. I suspect the neighborhood bars will remain open.

I'll try to keep you updated throughout the storm. My main concern is the possibility of losing power, but the propane tank for my grill is full so if we must, we'll cook on the grill when the storm is over. We might cook on the grill anyway. We have steaks.

My lovely friend who lives in Atlanta tried to convince me to pay her a visit, but Favorite Young Man and I don't want to spend hours in the traffic when it doesn't seem to be necessary. If we do have problems, we can always decamp to the apartment of one Mr. Willy Dunne Wooters. I told my friend that he never loses power. She asked why.

My response: he lives in a gated community and the storm gods don't know the code.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Yeah, that's my Willy.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Tourists are being evacuated from the Keys. Later today, residents of the Keys will probably be evacuated. There's talk of evacuating Miami.

If Irma makes her way to Jacksonville, it won't be until late in the day on Sunday. Even if she dies down, she should bring enough rain to fill Lake Junebug again.

Oh, goody. 

The Sunshine State is not fooling around. This is our governor, who has promised to respect Irma in the morning:

His name is Skeletor. I know I said I wouldn't make up nicknames for people without their permission, but I did not come up with this name for him. Besides, I think he knows that people call him Skeletor.

Okay. His name is really Rick Scott:

He just barely got elected.

Anyway, don't worry about us. If we're in an evacuation zone, which is not likely, Favorite Young Man will carry us all to safety.

Or at least he'll carry Penelope. She's his favorite

It's time for a Hurricane Preparation Nap now.

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug