Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: Down Mexico Way, Plus Mysteries of LYT's Eyebrows

Thursday, March 27, 2014 at 8:00 am

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Luke's mother-in-law is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.

Hello all,

I was treated to a Mexico vacation last week. My mom, who is turning 89 in May, decided that we needed a vacation in Puerto Vallarta. This was to be my 58th birthday present - gifts should arrive for April and her May birthday. For 30 years, my mom has been a very independent widow. She has traveled all over the US and Europe. This year, however she started to use a cane and did not want to try the trip alone. She needed a suitcase helper and I was it. This lady still volunteers 2 times a week at her police department (yep, it runs in the family).

So here is my take on the good and bad of our week in Puerto Vallarta. P.S. There's not much on night life - we were watching CNN by 10-11 p.m. every night.



How to clear customs, and TSA in a flash: you have to have a white-haired lady or man in a wheel chair with a cane. This is an incentive to take your parents, old friends, or whoever on vacation. First you get to the airport and get a wheel chair and driver. The wheel chair attendants take you to the front of every line. Yeah, okay you get some dirty looks from the long line at TSA as you and your charge are wheeled to the closed lane at the front of the line. The wheelchair and attendant go to the "needs help" lane, and you get into the non-help lane but right up front so you can keep an eye on the wheel chair. Zoom right through screening. The TSA did not cut any corners and it was a good go over, opened suitcases and all, but at least we did not have to wait.

Next came immigration to Mexico. The same thing happened - right to the front of the line. Not so hood - but at least we stopped - everything you have heard about Mexican taxi cabs is TRUE. The traffic is crazy. Every time our cab drivers hit the breaks I heard very loud rubbing of metal. Seriously, brake pads are needed. Also needed is transmission service. Mexican cabs all seem to be manual transmissions which tend to grind. Anyway, the ride was interesting and we got to and from the hotel in one piece, however my mom was making comments all the way on the driving to me; I just smiled.

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Our hotel had a policy that if you want new towels, sheets etc you leave them in the tub (towels) and card on the bed. Day 2 the face cloths were removed, they were not put in the tub and guess what - they were not replaced. Hunting for a maid again. In all my years of travel this was a first. If you take it from the room, you replace it. Also found small holes in the sheets; this is a no no. Housekeeping needs retraining.

In the 15 yrs my mom has been going to this hotel there has always been a clock/radio in the room. This year no clock and or clock/radio. The desk was asked about this and we were told one would be delivered. Never got one. There seems to be no follow through. Hotel staff should know if this can be provided or not. Don't tell me it will be delivered and then it does not show. Don't say the towels will be right up and they don't show - don't lie to the guest.

Anyway, I'll have more to say about it next week but we have to get to your questions first.

dnjscott: MYT,

Why did you move to Joshua Tree? Seems a big change from LA.

My husband retired. I grew up mostly in Anaheim, CA (Disneyland) and then later went to work in Los Angeles. I love cities with all of the shopping, arts, activities etc. Well, my husband grew up in the Joshua Tree area. He loved the open spaces, mines and the desert in general. We had a lovely antique house in Glendora, CA that was built in 1888, which I had totally redecorated after we were married. But after our daughter was born and he retired, we moved.

Joshua Tree is a great place to raise kids. We have acreage, so we had horses, a donkey, a pet pig (2), many cats and 2 wolves. The wolves used to tuck our daughter into bed every night and slept by her door. Wolvies get a bad rap in the world - they are very sweet animals and very loyal. Living in Joshua Tree gave us the advantage of letting me be a stay at home mom and to do lots of traveling.

Patch999:
Who's better at their jobs, the Supernatural boys, or Buffy and the gang?

This is a hard one as they are both very good. Buffy is a much older show from the 1990's whereas Supernatural is a 2000 product. The feel for both shows is very different as is the age demographic.

Buffy is set in a high school and brings in (besides demons, vampires etc.) the high school world and the issues that go with that age of kids. This is for the first few seasons. Interesting how the High School was built over the portal to hell. Then they move to college. Still kids in school fighting demons. Sort of like the demons we all faced in high school and still in college. Buffy dying and coming back - well that is an old story plot: she did this twice, but how can you keep a series going when you kill off the title character. And what was with Dawn? The little sister who was never seen through the first 1/2 of the series, but everyone treats her like she has been around forever. Sort of like in Happy Days when the big brother goes upstairs never to return. I liked Buffy for what it was. It was a good show for the time and you could invest in the characters like you do with a soap opera.

Supernatural is a much more adult show. And the brothers are not bad eye candy. It is not locked in high school and college setting; it moves around the United States. It is a darker show and gets more in-depth with the exploration of Christian and Pagan myths and beliefs.

Both shows are/were WB programs. Supernatural is currently on the CW in the United States. The CW seems to run a lot of programs in the supernatural vein. Currently I am watching The 100, which is pretty good so far. The CW also has Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Beauty and the Beast, The Tomorrow People etc. All roughly in the same genre.

Both shows are/were good for their times. Can't really say I like one better than the other.

troi: If alien life is discovered, how long do you think it is before we start eating them?

The better question might be before they start eating us. No, not sure that would happen either. I can remember back to the 1950's alien movies, which in generally were pretty much Saturday afternoon horror movies. But then Star Trek came along. Lets face it, Mr. Spock never looked so good as he did back then. We got much more diverse aliens, both good and evil.

I have always believed in life on other planets. Why should we be so high and mighty and the only ones around? I mean, look at cave paintings with humanlike figures with bubbles on their heads. It is now in the realm of reality to set up a colony on Mars; applications are even being taken and space flight with regular people who have lots of money LOL. Space stations etc. Forward thinking people like Jules Verne - look at what has come to pass from his writings.

If we can go into space, why can't others have done or are doing the same? Space is a pretty big place and we are a mere speck in the plan. There are probably good and bad aliens here now; we have gone from the Stone Age to a Colony on Mars.

I live, as you all know, in the desert. We have a couple of vortexes out here and people have reported strange things at these sites. Also there is Giant Rock, which reportedly has been a siting location for UFO's. MUFON has even held conventions in the area. Some of it may be the 29 Palms Marine Base and some of it may be aliens. But I know that sitting in my yard and watching the night sky with no ground lights in the area you do see some pretty interesting things in the sky, things that don't act like stars, planets or airplanes.

I know my inside cats are aliens, they know way too much to be humans and they have a weird thing for the wine cooler and the entry fountain.

Back to the eating thing: I understand we taste like chicken.

OneMinuteGalactica: Lewis and Clarke were the first foodies?

Really? I did not know that. I thought they were explorers. Wild game and berries were pretty common in their time and certainly not fast food or gourmet offerings.

Gallen_Dugall: Do you think it is responsible to post a wine and Oreo review along with a recommendation for growing a mustache?

I have no responsibility for how things got posted; that was all LYT's doing. When I visited for the LA meet and greet on my way to Mexico, it was suggested that we review Oreos and wine. Interesting combo for sure. Figured the review would be posted under the food review section rather than my section. We also talked about a cooking video; this may happen later as we ran out of time on this trip. I taught Julia how to make soup that is like her favorite Olive Garden soup. If you would like that to happen let LYT know; he responds to what he can that you would like to see (within reason and FCC rules). I do easy, home style cooking. Doing this review was fun and I would like to do more if allowed.

Gallen_Dugall: QUESTION! Does LYT just photograph poorly or does he really always have that "I'm going to light you on fire with my MIND!" look on his face all the time?

LYT is LYT. Have lots of pics with him smiling and he still looks like he could turn in a minute and kill you. Most of his acting gigs are playing heavies and insane killers. Julia met him on the set of Ding Dong Dead (you can buy it on Amazon). He is the crazy guy who talks to himself and kills girls. He really should have asked them out, but then it would not have been a B horror movie. He stabbed Julia in his backyard. Of course then it took him about 3 months after the movie wrapped to ask her out. His eyebrows are really sinister, in my opinion.

OneMinuteGalactica: Was the wind blowing back his hair like Drew Barrymore in Firestarter? Cause that's never a good sign

Not sure how this one got in my questions as it appears to be a reply question to another topic.

Gallen_Dugall: Baised on his eyebrows do you thing LYT could be Jack Nicholson's illegitimate child?

Yes, there is quite a resemblance especially when Mr. Nicholson was running around with that very large ax in The Shining. Seems to me that was how LYT killed Julia in their first movie together. Perhaps the next time LYT gets to interview Mr. Nicholson they could compare notes on this topic.

mag_linear: Dear Luke's Mother in Law,
Do you view the "I Read Your Fanfic" feature on this site? If so, do you think these authors are simply misunderstood or could some of them be dangerous to other people?

Yes, I have viewed the feature. I generally can only get past a few minutes of these things. My bet on some of them is that they could be dangerous to themselves and others. Also I worry about educational systems as some of the grammar is very, very bad. I can see LYT cringe as he tries to read some of the stories. Most of the ones I have seen are very over the top and on the vulgar side, but I also think it is a good section of TR as fan input is a large part of this site.

We have to use a broad spectrum of interests and this is a part of things. Writing both good and bad takes a lot of time and effort; to be creative is good. You all probably have sections of TR that you love and some that you don't like so much. We all have our favorites and I like the format of the story being read to us, especially with the peanut gallery comments in the background.

Kyle A: Are the Ninja Turtles as cool as I think they are?

Totally. Big fan of the Saturday cartoon version. I wish my back yard turtle was so cool. Well he is cool in his own way; I love Shelly, yes it is a boy turtle. Love the Heroes in a Half Shell.

Sean B: Best advice/resources for starting an in-person tabletop gaming group when you've been out of the hobby for a few years and your former group mates are scatted to the winds?

I would try going to my local park/rec department and suggesting it as an activity or limited course so you could train players to start and then they could move into the games and leagues as an activity. Also I can remember when Toys R US used to have Pokemon games in store, don't know if they still do this, but maybe you could go to a local toy or hobby shop and suggest this to the owner to bring in business.

Well friends, this brings to an end another week of my good and sometimes lame advice. I also hope you enjoyed the beginning about my Mexico adventure. I submitted it to TR as one of the infamous lists, but it was rejected as a list. However LYT said he could edit and break it up for use here. My cats, even though I provided a cat sitter for the week, were bent out of shape when I returned home. Felix and Boo decided to forgive my leaving first. My baby Frizzy took about 4 hours after hiding behind the spa tub. He got the door to the motor open and crawled in, only an offering of tuna got him back to my lovey. I found out from the cat sitter that one day he decided to TP the interior of the house. What is with teenage boys and TP? I am now off to work on my veg garden and filling the pool for the summer. Huggs.

If you'd like to add your questions to the pile for Luke's mother-in-law, leave them in comments below.

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