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mouse and weens

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Episode 26 Hollywood, Fortnite, Breastfeeding

It’s Friday and it’s Happy Hour! Enjoy some laughing jags, a Baby Plas impression and tangents, but first let’s do some catching up. Wildfires are burning 20 miles away from Mouse in San Diego. The smoky hazy air gives her PTSD since her house was built on a burn-down lot. She talks about her emergency box if she ever has to evacuate the house. Global warming and climate change are linked to the upswing in wildfires.
 
Weens talks about the Paradox of Choice, a TED talk. We are given so many choices nowadays, in an effort for freedom of choice, that having to make a choice is turning into paralysis, and might be leading to anxiety and depression. We reference the wonderful movie, Sliding Doors starring Gwyneth Paltrow. If we choose the right Levi’s, will we be as vegan and skinny as Gwynnie?
 
Which leads us into talking about Hollywood. We received a question from the ladies at Bad At Love Podcast wondering about whether Hollywood is still as Jackie Collins describes in Hollywood Wives.  The sisters both have icky nostalgia about the heart of Hollywood from their memories of visiting in the 90’s with the hair bands and Whisky A Go Go. Is it really still like that? Our dad struggled with this too, wanting to be a moral actor and stuntman in an immoral city in his eyes. Weens argues that LA is so big that it depends on which part of the city you are talking about. On sets, she has seen lots of pot-smoking and heard rumors of more sordid goings-ons, but hasn’t witnessed any craziness first hand.
 
Mouse’s wine kicks in and she goes on a laughing jag. We start to analyze our laughs and decide that they are an amalgam of Merle Haggard, Large Marge, and Dolly Parton. Weens realizes that not only is her laugh morphing into Dolly Parton, but that her mannerisms are too.  Mouse sites an old Texan saying about hair, which leads Weens to talk about a CNN anchorman – a silver fox - that she met on the sidelines of the Silver Lake Trader Joe’s incident.
 
We talk about Weens running into Craig Robinson of The Office and Ghosted on the set of the new Eddie Murphy movie currently filming called Dolemite Is My Name. He makes a joke about Weens working on The Rookie and she explains their connection through music. He is in a band and she connected him with her Australian friend Coop DeVille, who has an album Bat Funk Crazy and has played with George Clinton, Parliament, Bootsy Collins, Fishbone and Angelo Moore.
 
Hollywood brings us back to the memory of the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ sax player, Keith “Tree” Barry, who Mouse had to befriend during a night as a wingman/wingwoman. We talk about women getting stuck in awkward overnight situations, playing possum, and wishing guys would rub their nether regions, silver and otherwise, somewhere else, on a desk or in a melon. Did their dad really teach the birds and bees using fruit? This may have been a fabricated memory. But it’s a funny one.
 
Mouse talks about her latest project with the kids, beginning with a description of the summer. She started off with the best of intentions to keep her kids occupied this vacation with outings, chores, and minimal video gaming. But reality set in and the kids got more and more into Fortnite, a fascinating blend of a first-person shooter video game and social teamwork that worries many parents. There are conflicting articles about it and The Wall Street Journal wrote about Fortnite and how parents are even hiring coaches for their kids because there is such social status involved! Weens mentions there is a Black Mirror episode like this. But to break up the gaming and to find the balance during the long summer days, Mouse decided to have the kids make a movie much like she and Weens used to during their long summers. So the boys wrote a buddy-cop movie, they filmed it on an iPhone, and they worked together to edit it on Adobe Premiere Pro. It’s very homemade and will be staying on iTunes as a friends and family movie for now. Meanwhile, Mouse’s daughter went to theater camp and performed some numbers from The Greatest Showman. A clip is spliced into the podcast for your listening pleasure!
 
In the singing video, Mouse’s daughter was wearing Weens’ favorite nightgown saved from when she was a little girl. Weens laments never being able to wear cute dresses anymore with her big boobs, and Mouse brings up a great scene from Rachel Bloom’s comedy musical TV show Crazy Ex Girlfriend “Heavy Boobs”. We delve into our mom’s cleavage and her pillow chest, which takes a turn and becomes a White Grandpa Rap.
 
We get into Mouse’s relationship with her maternal grandparents and why that connection was stronger than Weens’ relationship with them. Mouse concludes that Grandma was her role model because the creating, growing, and nurturing qualities were strong for her.  Growing Things and Alan Thicke’s Growing Pains pop up, which induces a Sideshow Bob laugh from Weens.
 
How we get into gross body things, who knows. The nose knows! We talk about picking, where to wipe, and Weens’ love of her Neti Pot. The fact that it’s sticking out of her back pocket might explain her lack of career advancement and single life. We list off other off-limits body issues and land on nipples, as one often does.
 
We get into breastfeeding and dry nipples. Weens wonders if it was a turn-on to breastfeed, and Mouse explains what it feels like. She talks about her experience nursing and the sleep issues with new babies. We talk breast milk versus formula and who, between Mouse and her husband, would get up in the middle of the night to feed the babies. Hear the hit song Hot Milk by Weens as Mouse rationalizes feeding choices and light sleeping habits. We close it out with some sick laughter that may or may not have created a small tinkle in Mouse’s undies.
 
Please join our social media, especially our Facebook group where we posted all of the photos from the Trader Joe’s incident and you can play Where’s Waldo while looking for the Silver Fox. Support? http://ko-fi.com/mouseandweens to buy us a $3 coffee. Thanks friends!
 
Also, you may have to RESUBSCRIBE to our show because we have switched hosting companies. Yes, we are now available on Blubrry at mouseandweens.blubrry.net directly, as well as just about every other podcast player. We are working to merge everything over, so you may have to manually search Mouse And Weens in your player and then SUBSCRIBE again as the apps update the new automated feed. Thanks for your patience!

Episode 25 - Trader Joes Tragedy, Body Image, Caveman Theories, Lean In

We catch up and hear about Weens’ scary news from the night before: a 3-hour hostage situation at the Trader Joe’s in Silver Lake, a neighborhood in Los Angeles about 1/4 mile from Weens’ house. There is a lot of news about it now (abc7.com), but in summary, a suspected murderer stole a car, kidnapped his girlfriend, embarked on a high-speed chase which ended in a car crash, injuring his girlfriend. The teen exchanged gunfire with police, resulting in the death of a woman in Trader Joe’s, and he was finally taken into custody. Weens stood at the line with the reporters and took some photos and videos. She describes the multitude of emergency vehicles and watching the SWAT team roll closer to the store with their car doors open as shields. Police and negotiators used a mirror on a pole to see into windows where he was barricaded. Some people escaped out ladders from the second story, and other hostages were released out of the front door.
 
At her house, she heard the chaos go past – ambulances, helicopters, police – so rode her bike down to the scene to see firsthand what was happening. Weens was bothered by the fact that at first, she was watching this unfold on-screen from home during a live feed on Facebook and that those commenting were being flippant and making jokes about it. So, something inside her told her she needed to go there and witness it in person. She was also secretly hoping to get a toe shot off so that she could be on disability and not have to go to work because she is so tired! It did start to feel like she was at work, or like watching a movie, because this type of thing happens so often and we are so used to living our lives on screens. The scene of the mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, walking down the street with the chief of police and others, reminds Weens of The Right Stuff  (look it up, millennials!), which sends us on a tangent about another slo-mo walking scene in Gleaming the Cube with Christian Slater, the van skateboard scene in the same movie, and the van and skateboards scenes with Michael J. Fox in Teen Wolf and Back To The Future. Weens debunks her crush on Michael J. Fox and reminds us all that Bruce Willis was the one and only.
 
Weens recalls her friend being held at gunpoint in San Francisco at an Adidas store and having PTSD afterwards, so we think of the poor people in the Trader Joe’s who might forever be afflicted with this tragic memory. This gets us talking about trauma, what qualifies, and how do you rate your trauma. Weens is reading The Body Keeps the Score and it explains that unless you receive treatment for your traumatic experience in your past, the event can manifest in a variety of ways. You might become dissociated from normal emotional behavior and react in rage, and there is even evidence that trauma can change brain chemistry. Weens asks Mouse what her biggest trauma has been, and we discuss our dad’s death and the fact that we weren’t able to grieve properly because we were immediately sued by his ex-wife for his estate. She was Mormon so there might be LDS components to it. We are going to do some research, like listening to the Mormon Happy Hour Podcast!
 
We start discussing therapy and Mouse explains why she doesn’t go, that she feels it’s a waste of money, and she wouldn’t have anything to talk about with her black and white personality and the fact that she feels that life is good. But maybe one reason would be to seek therapy for body image issues. Growing up, Mouse was skinny and was always being fattened up. So that same mentality has stayed in place: finish everything on your plate. Now that she is working out a lot and did the Cool Sculpting, she felt confident and wore a bikini to the beach during the past weekend for the first time in 12 years. And the takeaway was that everyone should be happy in their body and strut their stuff no matter what. When you examine all the body types at the beach, you realize that anything goes. Weens remembers the robust women in Italy walking in Italy in all sorts of revealing clothing and being amazed at their confidence. Men don’t seem to have the same body image hang-ups and strut their bellies at the beach, so why is this? We should all learn from this and just own it! Weens recalls a story about being in Mouse’s Real Housewives closet and beginning to complain about her looks, but Mouse shushing her from saying anything construed as body shaming. Mouse messes this up all the time, but tries to shield her daughter from this self-doubt because it’s such a shame that kids go from being confident about their bodies when they are little, to losing the confidence as they get older.
 
Mouse has thoughts on why women worry so much about their bodies: the caveman theory. This is her favorite go-to theory that applies to many things in life, including diet.  She claims to have “invented” the Paleo Diet before it was ever published! A nutritionist friend and she were going to write a book about mimicking how humans, as animals, were meant to eat whole foods and seasonal offerings such as meat and fruit. Weens questions this, asking how evolution, vegetarianism, geolocation, and weather play into the theory, and Mouse explains that evolution of course is a part of it, and there are always exceptions to the rule. Her theory is just a general sense that this is similar to how we should eat.
 
This theory also applies to females trying to attract males of the species to procreate and that it can all be boiled down to reproduction. If women see men attracted to thinner body types in media, then women are going to try to emulate that, which breeds competition. This breeds “mean girls” and may be why women can’t really support each other, because there is some instinctual need to be the best in the room. Weens plays devil’s advocate and asks how homosexuality plays into this theory. Mouse surmises the evolution plays into this too, in that as the population grows, humans don’t need to reproduce as much, therefore evolve to not be attracted to the opposite sex. Weens explains that there were many other gender permutations in ancient civilizations to maintain the balance of tribes, and goes into a current description of fa’afafine, a third gender in Samoa. Mouse continues to theorize about later-in-life homosexuality and the sliding Kinsey scale.
 
We get into the caveman theory and matriarchal versus patriarchal societies. Are we seeing a shift in power these days with women’s marches? Is it solely a coastal phenomenon in the United States? Is history repeating itself regarding turn of the century voting rights, 60’s civil rights times, and now our fight for gender equality in the workplace. Weens relates a scene from a documentary on feminism describing a job opening for a secretary required to have certain looks and a quiet demeanor. Mouse talks about Sheryl Sandburg’s Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead, a book about how women can use their power and voice in the workplace and in raising strong girls. We talk about the idea that the word “bossy” can be a good thing and Weens says she is embracing that quality in herself more. As time goes on, her tolerance is less and less and she is speaking up more and more. Mouse’s daughter has two big brothers, so we talk about how important this quality is for her to stand up to them and raise her voice.
 
We talk about roles in the home since Mouse’s daughter models herself after her. Mouse did this as a little girl and sees the same in her daughter, mimicking the stay-at-home-mom chores with dishes, laundry, etc. We talk about how Weens was not like this as a kid and was always outside playing outside with the boys on bikes, skateboards, catching lizards and building forts. Mouse doesn’t like chores per se, but does see something satisfying about a nice pile of folded clothes, as happy as Snow White! In child development, Weens explains that when one sibling fills a traditional role, the other siblings fill the remaining roles. We do a fact check and find that Austrian psychiatrist Alfred Adler discovered that sibling hierarchy has a profound effect on influencing everything from career choices to people we fall in love with. Oldest children are often more confident leaders, but can be bossy, perfectionists, and worriers (Mouse), middle children are often more adaptable, diplomatic and patient but might struggle to establish a clear role for themselves and can go through a period of rebellion and can be competitive (Weens-ish). Youngest children are compulsive and good at getting their way, and often rebel as a way of distinguishing themselves from older siblings and are more likely to take risks and choose a career that is different than other family members (Weens-ish). We talk about whether this was true but boil It down to people-pleaser and maybe an ADD tomboy! What role did you play in your family? Write in!
 
Closing out, (1) we are now on Spotify, (2) please share, follow, and tell your friends. Word of mouth is powerful and we would love to spread around the friendship! Weens would also like to get plugged! Guys, reach out. She needs a well-aerated plug in her hot cottage, a la lizards doing push ups! Please contact us on social media @MouseAndWeens We would love to connect! And enjoy Weens’ outro song “Cavegirl” that she wrote while working on the Aquabats Super Show.

This episode took us a while to publish due to some audio issues. But Weens figured it out, all while working 16-hour days on set for the upcoming TV show The Rookie, starring Nathan Fillon of Castle. Poor thing needs her sleep and some better hours. Sheesh! Meanwhile, Mouse has 3 kids at home for the summer and didn’t make a lot of plans for camp. So sitting at the computer a lot is not in the cards. They have been out and about doing day trips, going on appointments, and making a homemade movie to keep the boys off Fortnite!
 
Also, you may have to RESUBSCRIBE to our show because we have switched hosting companies. Yes, we are now available on Blubrry at mouseandweens.blubrry.net directly, as well as just about every other podcast player. We are working to merge everything over, so you may have to manually search Mouse And Weens in your player and then SUBSCRIBE again as the apps update the new automated feed. Thanks for your patience!

Episode 24 Platonic Friends, Good Cop Bad Cop, Ball Questions, and Bachata

There is a heat wave everywhere, Southern Cal included, and it hit 116 degrees in Burbank. Nope, it’s not global warming because that’s just all a hoax. San Diego had some thunderstorms, which lead Weens to ask: Can you have a thunderstorm without rain? We did a fact check and YES, there is such a thing as a dry thunderstorm with small droplets that evaporate before they hit the ground.

Weens tells a story of Joshua Tree, being in the heat, fixing up her and Blake’s AirBnB rental house in 120-degrees, and how it was scary that you would just have to stop and stare and you would forget what you were doing! One day they thought the cat got out of the house, so they walked around the desert looking for the her, called radio stations and even called animal shelters. Weens cracks up describing our Mom walking through the desert with a long hat flapping in the hairdryer wind like Lawrence of Arabia. They finally found the cat sleeping under the comforter.

Blake is Weens friend, a past ex, and they were frustrated filmmakers together in the Bay Area. They made a student film called Mouse Cam before there were Go Pros, where they put a camera on a skateboard and followed a mouse tail down hallways. We get into the subject of inside jokes and hear about Mouse’s high school friends, two favorite inside jokes being “All red, these are the ones for me” and “Popcorn Balls” while trick or treating on Halloween. Inside jokes never translate but maybe that’s where skits and sketches come from.

Blake is married, Weens and he have the JT house together, and they have a brother sister relationship. He tells her she is controlling about driving, and Mouse agrees. Weens is too quick to tell people to go at the green light, and she defends her fast mouth by comparing cars to ants. If one ant stalls, then 200 ants behind it do too. Mouse asks whether men and women can truly be platonic friends? Weens says Yes, if they learn to turn off the intrigue and flirting. Mouse surmises that at some point the scales will be tipped and someone will be attracted to the other. Maybe this is because guys have a penis so will always have that factored in. Can that be turned off? They always have to drag them around and sit on them!

Where do penises go when a man runs or sits? You can see it on the new Sarah Silverman show “I Love You, America”. In the front row of her audience in her first show, she showed two nudists full frontal to try to break down the barriers of our hangup with bodies. It was a closeup shot of their genitals and Mouse was surprised to see that the balls just sit there on the seat too. What about sweaty balls? What is Gold Balm for? If guys are extra anxious, do balls sweat more? When guys adjust, are they moving their penis or unsticking their balls? When Weens worked with Morgan Spurlock and Brian Henson, Jim Henson’s son, on a documentary “Guano” that never got released, Morgan described “bat wings” to Weens – when the scrotum gets stuck to both sides of a guy’s thighs! Weens would marry Morgan. We need ball answers!

We segue into talking about relationships being busy, but Weens gets distracted by an album cover that is peeking over her laptop Home Improvement or Ziggy style. Please see our social media* to see what ‘Waiter, There’s a Fly In My Soup’ musician she’s talking about! 

Mouse is trying to keep the kids off screens while all three are home during the summer, and we talk about being the rule-enforcing parent. Mouse and her husband end up doing good cop, bad cop parenting, whether they want to or not, and their 12 year old has made it apparent that mom is the parent that always says ‘no’. But Mouse wants to be the good cop!

Weens says the kids will always think of her as the sweet cuddly mom, and this reminds her to talk about her love of the new Mr. Rogers documentary “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” You will always remember some person who has helped you along in life and how little we really think about that in daily life. It brings you back to the fundamental core of humanity: listen, don’t judge. And they have a scene of the puppet king building a wall to keep everyone out and maintain power. The movie audience all stayed until the very last credit and everyone was crying. We talk about being raised on Mr. Rogers and we remember it being boring, but maybe because we were older and distracted by the Thundercats! We didn’t watch a lot of TV and we thought we were a bohemian hippie family. But we were actually just a regular suburban family we think, that ate healthy. Mouse reads a tweet from the Dalai Lama about affection.

We close out, but add on an interview with Weens’ houseguest and childhood friend Jennifer. She grew up in the Bay Area, but now lives in New York. They talk about traveling to Tijuana and debate whether it’s safe or not given the drug cartels. Jen tells a story about her Arizona uncle asking about Mexican flavor at a Dominican restaurant and embarrassed her. She talks about her boyfriend who is Dominican and dancing the Bachata. It is her favorite Latin couples dance, it is a lot like the Bolero, and the music and lyrics are really about love – longing, lust, desire – in the past, present and future. “Hear” her dance as Weens tries to describe what she’s seeing.

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