Archive for the ‘attention’ Category

How to be important…

June 22, 2016

Oh, you are so busy, you tell everyone just how busy you are and insert the complaint of how exhausted you are.  There are so many demands on your time. Your presence is always required. You must not miss a meeting, a lunch date, a happening.  What if you are not present to make the right connection with an unknown but desirable someone who might push your interests farther forward? People admire just how much you accomplish, what efficient ways in which you use the time allotted you. Your list of engagements burgeons, so many obligations must be fulfilled.

But then it must be admitted that you are a force  of will over time, situations, and other people.  Do you even realize that once this life of yours ends so does all your importance?

Flash fiction. 2016

On listening to Rimsky-Korsakov…

September 14, 2012

Yesterday, Martha, who is disassembling her life here and moving to London, brought me a plasti-bag full of music CDs she is de-accessioning. “Keep what you want,” she said.  “Most of these are from a time when I was trying to develop a taste for classical music, but no longer play regularly.” In spite my promise to myself to acquire no more possessions, on studying the labels of each CD, and what composer and piece of music was exampled on the different discs, these gifts from Martha seemed appropriate to where my head and heart are these days, reveling in memory, revisiting long-assumed to be dormant pleasures of sensory nature. Perhaps because it is September, a treasured time of the year for me, when memory causes me to anticipate the joys of this season, that aides memoires such as the sound of winds in the late afternoons, and specific passages of sound make me revel in being alive.

So, I popped onto my player the Scheherezade of Rimsky-Korsakov as I prepared hot water and vinegar with which to wash the tile floors in my apartment. I should know myself better by now, because, all of my life I have been unable to multi-task, especially when music is a component of what must compete for attention. After hearing about the fourth bar of the overture, I collapsed into a heap on the couch, dripping scrubbing cloth clutched in my hand – and all ears.

Memories arose, unbidden.  Of kneeling on the floor in my childhood home, right next to the radio, of a late September dusk, Anyu and Apu sitting close-by in the scuffed leather chairs, Idiko perched on the piano bench, all of us silent as Scheherazade piped through the cloth covering the radio speaker.  A few years later, coming home alone  in the afternoon from Catholic school in Kingston, after parting from Ildiko at the church where she had her daily piano practice session, letting myself into the empty brownstone parlour and for company putting on the Rimsky-Korsakov record which had arrived as donation in a box of household goods from our church. On hearing the second movement, my eyes filled with tears of gratitude in the memory of how that music had helped me then assuage feelings of nostalgia for my lost homeland, and how it had kept me wonderful company when I was feeling particularly alone.

After an unexpected lassitude overcame me, my thoughts strayed to doing guided meditation sessions while recovering from Leukemia treatment, which involved the therapist verbalizing a scenario in a soothing voice – so sound and meaning implied by word content and context was able to transport one beyond quotidian concerns into a place of respite. That fleeting moment of puzzlement was replaced by a sense memory of holding my new-born son and a reminder of the special place of safety and oneness a mother and infant shared moment can be.

At some points in the music the sound made me experience temperature change, taste sensations, colour variations and the texture of varied fabrics.  Sinewy arabesque threads wound along the lines of melody Instrument sounds implied tapestries woven of different weight and colours of fibres. A taste of fresh figs, honey, acrid sweetness of plums vied with pungently spiced  taste tidbits, the texture of roasted almonds. I was awash in sensations.

Sudden silence when the music stopped brought me back to the clammy touch of the cool washrag in my hand, the sunlight streaming through the windows, the sound of wind teasing through the aspens outside. The noises of nearby construction re-asserted itself. My tile floors remained uncleaned, but after relaxing in my newfound sense of comfort and pleasure, I tackled that chore with a vigour which surprised me.

I do wonder though, do creators of works of art ever comprehend the effect of their creations, because they are ever varied, and largely unpredictable. But the riches bestowed on the individual appreciator are thousand-fold.  Was Scheherezade an artist? She of the Thousand and One tales, the one Rimsky-Korsakov references as muse, to aid us in reviewing tales of our own, read about, told to us, or directly experienced. Hmmm…

First solo ‘white cane’ outing…

January 19, 2009

The morning started out foggy; the suburban streetscape softened and made mysterious seeming by the enveloping haze. The huge cedars across the street loomed a half-tone grey in the pearly atmosphere. The bus stop sign, directly across from my house, was a marginally visible standard. It was to be my destination upon making my first foray, alone and without companions, into the streets. The objective was to travel the few miles by bus, downtown, and run some errands with a hopeful and uneventful return home within a couple of hours.

At breakfast, Rumpole gave me my marching instructions. These were to move slowly, cross streets with great care paying especial attention to my blind left side and to deploy my brand new cane while doing so. “Give drivers exta time to spot you, before crossing a street,” he cautioned, “and, brandish that cane to make yourself noticed.” Then, he added, “for Heaven’s sake, don’t get yourself run over!”

“Yassuh, boss-man,” I growled at him while unsnapping my cane and taking an “en Garde” position to skewer him, if my depth perception might allow. I made a feint to my left and promptly knocked my sunglasses off the table. “You know very well I am not completely blind.”

“Yeah, right.” He shrugged into his winter coat and braved his way over to plant a kiss on my lips. ” Take care, but enjoy yourself,” he said, smiling, as he let himself out the back door.

I began making preparations for my outing. Dug out the bus tickets from my purse; detached a chit, and put it into my coat pocket. Retrieved my sunglasses from the kitchen floor; double checked the bus schedule; downed half a cup of coldish coffee; readied my carry-all; shrugged into my coat; grabbed my purse and keys and took a final look at the kitchen clock. Only ten minutes to go before the bus would stop across the street. But wait! That allowed just enough time to nip into the bedroom and blast myself over thoroughly with my Elizabeth Arden perfume. Even if I am one of the invisible group of ageing women, people might as well smell me from a mile away! (Lookingforbeauty, whenever she drives me downtown makes hideous gagging noises and covers her nose if I have been the slightest bit spritzer happy with the perfume bottle, or, rather if I had forgotten she cannot breathe in the presence of perfume) I figured by the time the bus arrived, the miasma of Elizabeth Arden within which I moved might be somewhat dissipated by the foggy air outside, so the bus driver would not be overcome by my olfactory splendour.

I left the house and locked up. made my way gingerly across the road at the corner and took up position by the bus sign. To busy myself while waiting for the bus to arrive, I carved little animal footprints into the nearby snowbank with the tip of my cane, and then to leave permanent mark of my passage carved in my initials. This activity occupied me until the bus arrived. It slid to a stop on the icy road; the door sighed open and I clambered aboard. Had a bit of difficulty remembering which end of the bus ticket to feed into the reader. The driver, tiring of my attempts to turn the blasted card this way and that in a confusing and idecisive manner, smartly plucked the ticket from my fingers and fed it in. He grabbed it from the machine and read off for me for how long the ticket might be effective. I had 90 minutes to do my stuff downtown. I sat down behind the driver, figuring that he might appreciate the wafting of delicious smell from behind him; after all, he did not pass out while I was fooling around at the ticket reader. He did not gag, but then maybe he was holding his breath, because he was kind of surly and quiet when I attempted to engage him in small talk. Maybe he was deaf?

Since my last trip by bus downtown, the vehicles have been equipped with a system whereby a woman, who sounds suspiciously like the woman they have on recorded messages for all local utility companies, read out the names of all stops. Very irritating, this. She sounds a bit like a breathless radio announcer. Maybe all the bus drivers in the Bus Drivers Union demanded that a recording spare them from using their voices; or at least maybe this installed system allows the bus company to interchange drivers at will – they won’t have to know where they are if unfamiliar with the routes. Sally tells them where they are.

This driver was in somewhat of a hurry because he took turns as if in the LeMans car race – with great verve and insouciance. It was a fun, but brief, trip to town centre and I felt as if I had survived a wee bit of adventure. I clambered down from the bus at the end of the line and took my bearings. Still the fog; not too many cars going by; not many persons on the street. I pitter pattered my way south in the direction of the mall where I had to do some business. Played with my cane, tapping and testing all and any surfaces along my passage to learn their characteristic sounds – ping, for metal; thunk, for wood; swish, for shrubbery; crisp scrunch, for frozen snow-banks; and finger-nail-file scraping for concrete. The place where crossing became necessary I misguaged the depth of the sidewalk and came down hard and short. Stood there craning my neck in all directions to spot moving cars and waited for them to roll to stop and let me make passage across. The left side vision is problematic for me, so I held out the cane and waited before proceeding. What a bother. No more nipping and skipping across the streets for me. Aargh! I hated feeling so vulnerable.

The walk was not the usual brisk one; it was more of a cautious creeping. The terrain was not familiar, and like all unfamiliar terrain must be learned to negotiate from scratch. No more automatic pilot for this old Gal! The walk, slow as it was, did feel good though, especially since I was independent and alone. The air felt moist and cool on my face; my hands were warm inside gloves; and I was snugly buttoned up in my wool coat.

I did my errands in the mall. Dropped in on a shop-keeping acquaintance, checked out her new shipment of beautiful spring clothes and gossiped a bit with her. Her shop dog, a spoiled Bichon Frise, bared her fangs at me and snarled. Nothing has changed there! Checked out a big sale of discontinued foot-wear, which did not tempt. Went into the childrens’ shop and browsed for books for Mousey. Nothing caught my interest there. I decided to retrace my steps back to the bus loop, if indeed I would be able to return home on my ticket before it expired.

I tap-tapped my way back and noted the metal grating around the trunks of decorative trees planted in the middle of the side-walk. Explored the pattern of the grating with my cane and the music that could be made by riffling the cane tip across the patterns. Very charming sounds! The tree trunks were smoothish, and I dragged the cane around the girths to hear the texture. This way of moving about intentionally gives rise to new and different sense experiences. One’s passage is accompanied by novel (to me) soundscape. The walk took me back to where the bus had ejected me. The time it took to take the walk was immeasurable. For one, I do not wear a watch. For another, I was happily occupied with new sensations.

The bus ride home was more leisurely; the driver more amenable to chatting. We exchanged sightings of Julia Major, a local woman who parades around topless as soon as the weather turns springish, and who is the bane of all public utilities which have to provide service for people with all kinds of ability and disability. She is litiginous in the extreme, and I told the driver of a Julia sighting where she threatened to sue Translink, when the bus’s ramp for wheelchairs broke at the stop she was insisting on getting off via the ramp, rather than walking off as she had walked on. The driver joked, that had Julia been on the bus with me this day, she would have given him an earful of diatribe for him allowing me to climb solo on to the bus without him helping me. We had a good chuckle.

The driver stopped the bus next to my driveway, so I wouldn’t have to stroll across any snow or ice. I thanked him and waved my cane in good-by, let myself in through the back door, hung up my coat and made myself a cup of coffee. It had been a satisfactory first outing with my white cane, and I had enjoyed myself.

Fried eggs and rain…

November 2, 2008

Cast iron pan sizzles with fat.
Hard wet pavement fizzes with
passing traffic, fading in and out
in the background.
The yellow suns gather heat.
Their clear film gradates to opaque
whiteness, with a ruffling skirt that
puffs and subsides
in counterpoint crackling.
The toaster’s pop signals
an abrupt end to this small
observed miracle.
While traffic hisses by
we sit, contemplating our offered
feast of needed warmth which waits
to be pricked and pooled,
sopped up and savoured
this cold November morning.

GM, November 2008

Thinking bloggers? There are many…

July 25, 2007

thinkingbloggerStephen Danko of Steve’s Geneology Blog has tagged me with a Thinking Blogger Award, for which I am pleasantly surprised.

The rules for me to follow now are to nominate 5 blogs which cause me to pause at length and make me think.  Then to post the logo for Thinking Blogger Award, which is at left, due to Stephen’s kind efforts to take me through the method for doing so.  Please check out Steve’s blog, he has set himself a tremendous task in tracking family members.  He also has helped me post the Thinking Blogger Award Logo which you can append to your blog when you nominate five other bloggers.

There are many blogs which are thought provoking and demonstrate the writers do ruminate over things and share their thought processes with readers. My five picks are (order is unimportant!)

1. (Worst)writer – at  .  Tommi has a wonderful writing voice, loves manual and electric typewriters and obviously loves the process of writing.  An expatriate, he writes from Germany. He makes me think!

2. Galvanized – at This Texan matron, writer and observer thinks keenly about the culture she and her family inhabits. She is wise, socially and politically aware, insatiably curious about many things, spiritual and has a tremendous sense of humour. I look forward to all her posts, as she makes me take closer stock of situations surrounding me, here in Canada.

3.  Joe Felso (ruminations) at .  This writer is a poet, teacher and artist with a marvellously complex view of the world he inhabits.  He writes thoughfully, with passion, self-deprecation and a marvellous creativity. If many teachers were like him, our children could be considered in wise hands! His poetry has both depth and breadth.

4. My writings : A wide angle view of India at . Nita, a writer and middle aged woman from India provides a comprehensive view of life, manners, economy, education, politics and culture of India – always her writing makes me take stock of my life where I find myself and brings the realization of commonalities with people living geographically far away.  Nita does a tremendous job of situating her India as a globally important country.  i truly value what her writings bring to me.

5. Kay at  writes amazing, perceptive and sensitive portrayals of the character and needs of the elderly in their relationship with younger persons.  She has, through her writings, processed her feelings and responses toward her aged mother’s care and decline toward death, and sharing these with us here in blog-land is a benediction.

I hope you enjoy and find useful what you find in the abovementioned blogs.  Please propel the meme forward by nominating your own Thinking Blogger Awards.

Dawn Chorus…

May 17, 2007

A gentle lambent pale grey light filters through my uncovered right eye as I awaken to an awareness of this other reality. Stirring in the cocoon of my duvet I lie, silent, listen to Rumpole breathing, waiting for the robins’ morning announcements, for the chicka-dee-dee-dee counter melodies.  Minutes pass, this morning chorus is very weak this dawn, not the familiar vigorous callings and singings back and forth among these suburban companions.  I am instinctively worried, crawl out of bed and make for the back door.  Maybe the membranes of the house prevent these familiar locutions from  being heard from  inside the house in their full vigour. Willing the sounds to be their remembered strength, I throw open the back door stand quiet, listen and note little appreciable difference in what can be heard – it seems a weak, half-hearted chorus!

 At dawn, The General, our Maine Coon cat, generally lies in the studio window listening to the birds, and eagerly waits for their first movements in and about the apple tree, their foraging in the grass at the foot of it. This morning, he is absent from his habitual perch.

Entering the kitchen, I make up a pot of coffee.  As the machine percolates, giving out its gurglings, its noises blank out any other sound. The General pads his way through, his nails clicking on the linoleum.  He pauses to rub against my shins, makes a comment and proceeds on his way to his cattish occupations.  Coffee poured, I sit musing on my observations about this morning.

When we were courting in the mid-70s, Rumpole was working as an ecologist for the Provincial Government.  One day, he presented me with Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” and requested that I read it, think about the ramifications of its contents. We had many discussions about the cautions Carson raised.

During our life together, without undue discussion, almost by silent assent, we never used pesticides on the bits of land on which we found our perch.  When one summer, up north, carpenter ants decided that our log house made an ideal haven for nests, we researched ways to get rid of them and found that pouring ground cinnamon on their paths to and from the house, along the perimeter of the foundations and into their entry points in the logs worked quite well to offend them into leaving our house.

Here in suburbia, there is a movement afoot to prevail on the municipality to ban the use of pesticides. I know people who travel to the States to purchase pesticides banned here in Canada, in order to maintain their emerald, manicured plots of lawn. Experts of varying opinion weigh in, pro and con, about pesticide use.  Much argument prevails, decisions are deferred. The local lawns retain their manufactured sameness. The decorator gardens are ubiquitous.

But the dawn chorus, that one must now strain to hear, diminishing, lessening year by year, if it finally disappears to leave a soundscape of mostly mechanical music, should be treasured above any cosmetically perfect ersatz natural surrounding we fabricate around ourselves.

Mr. J. S. Sargent deliberates…

February 17, 2007

M. Gautreau welcomes me into his gilded salon

where his pallid prize of a wife reclines

on a recamier

amid bombazine drifts of insipid mauve.

He is eager to memorialize his passion

for this limpid creature

with her sharp-nosed profile

and pronounced overbite.

“Capture her glamorous essence,

her entrancing simplicity”

requires this amorous husband.

He wishes for tout le monde

to celebrate his good fortune, indeed

to smite them in the face with this fact

by entering the portrait in the Salon d’Automne.

The title is to be “Madame Gautreau”.

How best to present this white-skinned beauty?

She has spent her life indoors, it seems.

No sunshine has sullied her cheeks

with lively freckles or vital blush.

No exertions have strengthened

her slight supple body, for

she moves like a languid wraith

through a sluggish atmosphere.

How to express the value of this creature

to a man whose every act is

of acquisition, amassing treasure?

She cannot be presented as a bon bon 

set amid frills and laces,

to be selected at whim from among

many other such sweets.

She needs a more beguiling setting!

Ah, a glowing, lamp-lit, pale lunar moth,

whose vellum wings are dusted

with a powdered light.

She needs to touch upon the ground,

as if pausing, silent, soft, in mid-flight,

yielding a glimpse, a glance

of fleeting elegance

that will quickly disappear into night.

25/11/04   GM

A certain energy….

February 16, 2007

In looking at many paintings over a fairly long lifetime, what has struck me as most important to my understanding of what a painting can be is the element of energy sustained by the painter during the creation of a work which then is palpable to me as a viewer during a lengthy period of consideration. During such a long time of looking, the painting reveals its magic, the play and struggle of its maker and the willingness of a viewer to be suspended from quotidian pre-occupations and taken up into the work seen.

I gon’t get around much any more, in terms of long-distance travel, so the opportunity to see, first-hand, some wonderful paintings about which I am curious, is not a possibility for me. So, in a case such as this, the availability of books with good reproductions is invaluable if not an ideal way to get a view of an artist’s oeuvre. Recently, “PGT” shared with me his book of the photographic works of Joel-Peter Witkin.  We discussed the illustrations at length, but also the fact that J-P Wikin had a twin brother who painted, Jerome Witkin. On arriving back home, I Googled Jerome Witkin and found some intriguing information which firmed in my mind that I had to find and acquire a book about this remarkable painter.  This took a little bit of doing, of ordering a book which took some time to arrive, but it is here now, in my lucky hands.

“Life Lessons – The Art of Jerome Witkin”, Sherry Chayat (Second Edition) Syracuse University Press

     Looking at the reproductions, some of which are  5 inches by 7 inches, and then reading the actual size of a painting, say, 71 by 88 inches, required me to go out into my studio with the measuring tape to mark out on a wall this larger proportion, then sitting in front of that to look at the reproduction and imagine the shapes in the painting enlarged to that imagined size. Then, standing at my full height of 63 inches, extending my arm to full height and width (adding a brush) I tried to re-enact the making of a diagonal edge in the painting – and then realized how much psychic and bodily concentration may have been required of the painter in order to make the sure mark that delineated the long edge of a diagonal shape. Just what was the dance of Jerome Witkin like in establishing the underdrawing and composition of his rather complex designs, of moving forward and backward to check the marks for their desired direction, proportion and descriptiveness?  Then of course, there is his determination of how to disport the warms and cools, lights and darks, complex versus simple paint manipulations – he had to keep all these balls juggling for a long period of time in order to have arrived at such consistency of freshness, and just-rightness in so many paintings.

There is something acute and remarkable in how Witkin draws the human form, and so much pleasure in how he “sees” the specificity of the turn of a foot, or a pant-covered leg, that looking even at these small reproductions feels like seeing these things for the very first time.  That the theme of the paintings  varies from the harrowing to the poetic, symbolic is in itself a daunting reminder of the drama of life, of the witnessing of life and its circumstances by a most remarkable painter.  These are not paintings one can just walk by, unscathed.

Jerome Witkin’s work is my newly discovered treasure. How I wish to be in a room full of his work, and just sit, walk about and be inundated!

The innocence of vision…

February 13, 2007

My grand-daughter is 6 months old.  She is making forays into moving around her yet limited world, trying to co-ordinate the movement of her  arms and legs, and discovering just what her legs and arms are capable of in articulating in space.  She moves her body into strange tripod configurations, looks between her arms to see what has happened, flops down and rolls over and pulls her legs up to her head and really closely inspects her toes and instep.  Losing interest in this after a while, she cranes her neck about to determine what she will attempt to take closer looks at. Once she has decided this, she flips over onto her stomach and begins the concentrated effort to try and move her legs in tandem with her arms.  From time to time she turns her head and eyes to guage her progress, and then resumes her gargantuan effort.

She took 15 minutes to reach me from the space of about 4 feet away.  She was very determined and looked at me frequently for the come hither signals.  Her little mouth set in a grim pout and taking frequent sit-ups for a breather, she crept along and made progress sometimes with three consecutive alternating crawls before losing rhythm and flopping to her stomach.  By the time she reached my toes, which she announced by a smart tweak of my stockinged big toe, she uttered the complaining tones by which she indicates wanting to be picked up.

Once up in my arms she was most intent on exploring my face.  The first thing she is most attracted by are my glasses – an immediate grab is in order, and into her mouth goes the shiny bit with the glass in it. Doesn’t taste so good, she drops it.  But then immediately she fixes upon what I suspect is the shine of my eyes, and tries to extricate the orb from its housing, carefully working her fingers with delicate movements.  She leans in to peer closely, very intent and very serious her chocolate brown button eyes mere inches from my faded khaki ones.  I wonder, does she see herself reflected in my eye? She looks carefully from one eye to the other and presses my eyelid closed one moment, and pulling down on the undereye the next. She chortles, and progresses to my bangs which she pulls away from my face quite smartly and looks at very closely. She has a huge smile of pleasure on her face as she proceeds to ruffle the hair around my face.

We sit face to face, and I sing her a quiet song, slowly and with emphasis. We gaze at each other and she mimics my mouth movements, and occasionally she will repeat sounds with a wondering expression on her face.  She is a quick study! Her concentration is so complete, so quiet. She pats my face with unintended hard whacks, and after awhile leaves her hand on my cheek, poking and prodding.  When I lean in to touch my forehead to hers she smiles in pleasure, her lovely chubby face looking almost buddha-like.

There is almost nothing that compares to this marvellous communion with a young infant.  It is sheer joy to witness such innocent vision, such non-judgmental gaze, such over-arching curiosity. I think it is so important to go about, at any time of life, with this innocence of vision, to be prepared to be constantly surprised, delighted  or wary with the world and what it holds.  For certain, having children in our lives is one way to reconnect with this sense of wonder, for children at all stages and ages provide many gifts for our re-experiencing.

Need I say that I am thrilled to be a grandmother right now?

Women’s concerns….in the movies…

February 11, 2007

As I have aged over the past 10 years, much of what is pictured in Hollywood movies regarding women’s lives and concerns has not resonated so much with me.  I suspect I may not be alone in this.

As a late-middle-aged woman I had my battles with weight gain and inevitable changing physical appearance – greying hair, more saggy musculature,, the appearance of lines on face and throat, mottling skin. No, the mirror never lies unlike intimates who wish to minimize these changes that are taking place. And the actresses in the movies of the same vintage as I are either the perennially unchanging Goldie Hawn, or the elegant, long-boned Diane Keaton. who seems somewhat fixed in amber.

So imagine my surprised delight when my friend “The Lady of Perpetual Crisis” brought over a video one evening for us to watch while “Rumpole” was at his bass guitar lesson. In it, a group of neighbourhood women of varying ages embark on a trip downtown to see the doctor overseeing their diet and exercise regime.  This is a wonderfully humorous look at the  quirky things that can happen en route to a simple experience of weighing in and sitting in a waiting room.

“C’t’a ton tour Laura Cadieux”  1998,  Canadian, starring Ginette Reno, Pierrette Robitaille. Directed by Etienne Chatiliez and Denise Filiatrault.

“C’t’a ton tour…” is a marvellous example of casting an ensemble of very fine actors, Quebecois patois and humour and realistic, un-glossed settings. Ginette Reno, a beloved Quebec Chanteuse, does a fine turn as actress in this movie.

Many women of my generation have been labelled as the “sandwich generation”.  We have grown children, some of whom have left the nest while others linger longer and as well we have aging parents toward whom we have to extend increasing filial care.  There is much support and information available to us, however the presence of the aged and their difficulties are rarely addressed in the movies.  Only in discussing details of care of aging parents with friends engaged in the same kind of relationship does the potential of humour in such inter-relationships crop up. Of course, there are many heart-rending situations that occur, full of pathos, but there are also some amazingly funny happenings that crop up between aged persons and their caregivers.

 The video, “Tatie Danielle” 1990, French, Starring Tsilla Chelton, Isabelle Nanty and Catherine Jacob,

 follows the travails of “Tatie Danielle” as she loses her caregiver companion and moves into her nephew’s family home and there wreaks havoc. This is a humorous look at the cliche idea of “the nice little old lady”, who really is an old devil in disguise.  The acting is fabulous!

Both these movies are “chick-flicks” for older women