I’m taking a class at our church called The History of the Catholic Church: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Just kidding. That’s not what it’s called, though perhaps that should be the course name. Actually, it’s just called The History of the Catholic Church. I’ve only gone to one class so far, and it was pretty dry. I can’t wait until we get to the Renaissance Period. That should spice things up a bit. Pope Leo X had more kids than Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. He paid for those kids by charging cash money for forgiveness of sins and time off in Purgatory.

Anyhoo, about a half hour into the class, someone’s cell phone rang. I’m very careful about silencing my cell phone and my Apple watch when it’s appropriate. In fact, I’m so scared that my phone will ring during Mass that I leave it in the car — TURNED OFF. You can’t be too careful. However, I recognize that mistakes can be made, and people can inadvertently leave their cell phones turned on and not silenced. I assumed that after it rang, the person — probably terribly embarrassed — shut off the phone. Au contraire. About a half hour later, that same phone rang again. Sigh.

I have written many words bashing millennials. But I will tell you that while I don’t know whose phone was ringing, I do know there was not a single 20- or 30-something person in the room. I expect the median age of the class participants was 75, and that’s only because I brought the median age down. It’s possible a few of the class attendees might have been grandchildren of Pope Leo X.

I believe Baby Boomers have many good attributes. For the most part, we are honest, patriotic, hard-workers, and love God and our grandkids (perhaps not in that order). I will admit, however, that there have been a couple of occasions as of late that have exasperated me, and they have included Baby Boomers.

Yesterday afternoon, I went to see Late Night, a movie starring Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling. I like both actors very much. I loved Mindy Kaling in The Office and I was probably the only Baby Boomer who watched her (and laughed out loud) in The Mindy Project. Bill and I had tried to see the movie on Sunday, but all the seats except for those in the very front of the theater were sold out. I don’t love Mindy Kaling and Emma Thompson enough to watch them for an hour-and-a-half with my neck bent backwards at a 90 degree angle.

Yesterday, however, I was literally the only person in the entire theater at the 1:10 showing. The only person, that is, until two woman in the 70ish age range came into the theater talking to one another at the same decibel they would use if they were having coffee at Starbucks. They will stop when the movie begins, I thought to myself. Once again, au contraire. (I have never said au contraire twice in a blog post in my entire life.) Nope. They chatted to one another throughout much of the movie. At first I thought perhaps they didn’t know that there was another person in the theater. So I coughed a few times to let them know I was sitting right there. They didn’t seem to care. Finally, about halfway through the film, they apparently became engrossed enough in the story to keep silent.

So, Millennials, perhaps I owe you an apology. Maybe you all need to teach your grandparents some manners.

Friday Book Whimsy: Why Not Me?

searchI will tell you the truth right up front. I love Mindy Kaling. I am not her demographic. I am way older than what I would believe is her typical fan. But The Office, for which she wrote many episodes and appeared as Kelly Kapoor, made me laugh (until Steve Carrell left at which time it didn’t make me laugh any more). And I found her own show, The Mindy Project, to be quite quirky and funny in a just-short-of-offensive way. Admittedly, I don’t find it funny enough to pay money to watch it now on Hulu, which picked it up after it was cancelled by Fox.

Her first memoir, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, was humorous and provided the reader with a good sense of what it’s like to break into television, especially for a minority. Why Not Me? continues her personal story via short and very amusing essays.

The book – and Ms. Kaling – wouldn’t be for everyone. She doesn’t hold back from saying what she thinks. In fact, if you watched The Mindy Project, it appears you will have a pretty good idea of who Kaling is (though one of the essays in the book is about ways in which she is different from the character she plays on The Mindy Project – i.e. TV Mindy would sue a Boston Market for giving too-small helpings of sides, and TV Mindy would own a gun and keep misplacing it). Still, the irreverence seems to be the same.

While not particularly a fan of nonfiction, I am – oddly, perhaps – a fan of biographies and memoirs. Caveat, I simply loathe the self-indulgent oh-poor-me-I-grew-up-in-a-dysfunctional-family memoirs seemingly written by anyone who knows how to use a keyboard. I enjoy memoirs in which the writer doesn’t take himself or herself too seriously and can make me laugh, or has a truly interesting story to tell. Why Not Me? meets both criteria.

The book reads very quickly and I finished it in one day. It was a nice break from the serious books I had been reading as of late.

If memoirs are your cup of tea, give Why Not Me? a try.

Here is a link to the book.