Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Grace and Frankie Sneak Peek, Season 3, Episode 3 an Unofficial Recap

Grace and Frankie Season 3 Sneak Peek
I'm back with the latest installment in the story arc of Grace and Frankie as they develop their new business, vibrators for arthritic women. In Episode 1 the dynamic duo started their business plan and in Episode 2, they developed concepts for the brand's visual identity. (click the links to read, yo.)

Episode 3 opens with Grace again seated at her computer near the kitchen, hand sanitizer by her side. This time she's searching vibrator patents

It's midday, but Frankie only recently returned from an overnight visit at Farmer Jacob's. She's humming as she joyfully mixes up a kale smoothie (or possibly a batch of yam lube) oblivious to how her noise and that of the grinding blender are affecting Grace's concentration. 

Frankie further ignores Grace's social cues and sits down across from her to talk. 

Frankie: So where are we at with our plans?

Grace (resigned to human interaction): Well, I've uncovered a lot. No pun, intended. There's actually some very interesting technology out there and I've got a few solid ideas. I think it's time for a model.

Frankie (eyes wide, enthused): Ooh, I'll ask my art teacher where he finds male models for the nudes class.

Grace (sighs): No, not that kind of model. More like a product sample. 

Frankie (still eager): I can sculpt something. Some things...

Grace (with a hint of exasperation): It sounds like everyone makes models with 3D printers these days, but I don't know the first thing about that.

Frankie (even more excited): Jacob has a friend...

Grace (interrupts, annoyed): I told you not that kind of model.

Frankie (crabby): Oh, let me finish. Jacob's an engineer, remember? Even though he's a farmer now, he knows a lot about technology. He has a friend  who helps runs some kind of "maker space" with 3D printers and all sorts of technology stuff. I'll text him and get us an appointment.

Frankie picks ups her phone to text, but a smile comes across her face.

Frankie continues: I think we need to do a little more research first. C'mon Grace you've been sitting on your ass too long. I'm taking you on a field trip.

Frankie literally pulls Grace up and they nearly tumble across the kitchen. Frankie is laughing as they head out to the car.

Cut to scenes of their family members (whose stories I'm not documenting here).

Back to Grace and Frankie.

Frankie takes them to a woman’s boutique, which is to say, an upscale woman-orientated sex toy shop. They enter together holding hands because Grace has been anxious ever since Frankie told her where they were headed. She’s never been in a place like this. 

Frankie (hugs Grace, says warmly): Honey, you're at the start of an incredible journey. Isn't this fun?!

Frankie heads off to her favorite part of the store.

Grace wanders anxiously. A salesgirl (Ms. Lena Dunham!) who had been in the background approaches her. Having seen the pair enter the store, but also noting the couple's hug and Grace's jittery state, she assumes Grace is lesbian who has come out late in life. Salesgirl reveals this as they exchange pleasantries.

Grace is horrified. She awkwardly tries to concede that she has nothing against lesbians. She stammers that BTW, her husband is a full-blown homosexual who recently married his secret lover of 20 years! Well, ex-husband...

It's an ungraceful conversation for Grace.

Grace escapes to find Frankie, who is captivating a small group of young women with her knowledge about the history of vibrators. Not wanting to call any more attention to herself, Grace avoids the group. Instead, she turns and quietly peruses the inventory, She's about to exit and wait in the car, but on the way a sign catches her eye. "Self-pleasure? There's an app for that."



Grace (hesitantly, apologetically) re-engages the salesgirl: Uh, excuse, but do you have a brochure on, uh, this? (Points to the sign.)

Salesgirl (stifling a giggle because only old people ask for brochures): No, but you can find information and videos online.

Grace: Ugh, no thank you. I just cleaned up my unseemly browser history, so I no longer get porn ads.

Salesgirl: 0_0 blinks.

Grace (realizing this is her best chance and that she can't get more embarrassed than she is now): I've read patents about this kind of thing though.

Salesgirl: (confused look)

Grace (finishing her thought): Can you show me how it works?

Camera pulls away as Salesgirl pulls out her phone and she and Grace have an animated discussion, Frankie ambles over and joins in. There is oohing, aahing and laughter.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

From Frankie Bergstein @SuckItAynRand on Twitter.
I've yet to receive a cease and desist letter from the Grace and Frankie crew, so here's my imaginary recap of the Grace and Frankie product development, okay vibrator development, story arc. You can read Episode 1 here.

When we last saw Grace and Frankie, Grace was working diligently on their business plan to develop a vibrator for old, arthritic women while Frankie was, well, being Frankie.

As Episode 2 opens we see Grace working on a shiny new computer, one she purchased in an effort to erase the "naughty" browsing history she created doing vibrator research. She still has a bottle on hand sanitizer nearby.

Not surprisingly, Grace continues to do the bulk of the work on the business plan, but she's okay with that. Grace is feeling invigorated and more positive than she's been in a while now that she's facing a business challenge, as opposed to a personal one, In fact, she's a big cheerleader when it comes to Frankie's art show.

The show is a success, or at least successful enough that Frankie commits to developing artwork for the vibrator line.

Grace channels Frankie's newfound enthusiasm by asking her to come up with at least three ideas to define and support their developing brand's visual identity.

Frankie develops three concepts:

1) By vaginas for vaginas

Frankie once again tries her hand (um, vagina) at painting and comes up with something very similar (see above) to what was ultimately rejected for the yam lube after her contract with Say Grace ended. The brand message is one of female empowerment as indicated by bold, abstract prints (and, of course, vaginal painting).

2) Not dead yet. 


These visuals represent the perfect marriage of Georgia O'Keefe's larger than life vaginal flowers and the mysterious, starkly phallic corpse flower. The notoriously slow-to-bloom corpse flower's Latin name, Amorphophallus titanum, translates into "misshapen phallic giant."  However, Frankie proudly, if mistakenly, explains the Latin name to Grace as the "giant phallus of sexual desire," a perfect fit for their brand!

This visual identity pushes societal conventions aside.

Frankie explains: Who says women peak sexually at 40? Okay, maybe we did peak a few years back, but we're still here and we still want to have orgasms. They're fun! They feel good! Like the corpse flower, it may take us a while to get going, but we need to let women know they have at least one more glorious burst waiting to be released.


3) Dainty old lady


Hoping to force a choice between concepts 1 and 2, Frankie's third concept is a treacly pastel-laden take-off of the incontinence product, Poise Pads. 


Frankie's plan succeeds to some degree. We see Grace wiping her hands with sanitizer as she give Frankie feedback on the concepts. A savvy businesswoman, Grace, is aware that Frankie is trying to force her hand. Grace coyly asks a lot of questions, feigning interest in the Dainty old lady concept.

Concerned, Frankie gets anxious and more animated as Grace asks more questions about the wrong concept. She eventually reveals her hand and tells Grace to move on to the other ideas.

Although Grace is disgusted by the concept of vagina art, she's somewhat drawn to the brazen look of Frankie's first concept, By vaginas, for vaginas. She likes story of female empowerment. But mostly she can't can past the idea of a paint brush in Frankie's hoo-ha.

This leave both women focusing on the Not dead yet concept.

Grace: I think this really nails it. Remember we told the kids that we were going into business making products for women like us? Not dead yet leaves room for us to create all sorts of things, not just...sex toys.

Frankie: Yes! We can do so much to help women our age blossom..bloom...burst!

Grace (enthused): I think you just found the name for our company!

Frankie: Blossom, Bloom, Burst? It sounds like a law firm/florist.

Grace: We'll pick one of those words. They're all Bs.

Frankie: A tribute to Babe! Where is she, by the way? I think we need to include her in important business meeting like this.



.......

Stay tuned for Season 3, Episode 3 of Grace and Frankie, "The field trip."

Grace and Frankie Season 3, Episode 2, an Unofficial Recap

From Frankie Bergstein @SuckItAynRand on Twitter.
I've yet to receive a cease and desist letter from the Grace and Frankie crew, so here's my imaginary recap of the Grace and Frankie product development, okay vibrator development, story arc. You can read Episode 1 here.

When we last saw Grace and Frankie, Grace was working diligently on their business plan to develop a vibrator for old, arthritic women while Frankie was, well, being Frankie.

As Episode 2 opens we see Grace working on a shiny new computer, one she purchased in an effort to erase the "naughty" browsing history she created doing vibrator research. She still has a bottle on hand sanitizer nearby.

Not surprisingly, Grace continues to do the bulk of the work on the business plan, but she's okay with that. Grace is feeling invigorated and more positive than she's been in a while now that she's facing a business challenge, as opposed to a personal one, In fact, she's a big cheerleader when it comes to Frankie's art show.

The show is a success, or at least successful enough that Frankie commits to developing artwork for the vibrator line.

Grace channels Frankie's newfound enthusiasm by asking her to come up with at least three ideas to define and support their developing brand's visual identity.

Frankie develops three concepts:

1) By vaginas for vaginas

Frankie once again tries her hand (um, vagina) at painting and comes up with something very similar (see above) to what was ultimately rejected for the yam lube after her contract with Say Grace ended. The brand message is one of female empowerment as indicated by bold, abstract prints (and, of course, vaginal painting).

2) Not dead yet. 


These visuals represent the perfect marriage of Georgia O'Keefe's larger than life vaginal flowers and the mysterious, starkly phallic corpse flower. The notoriously slow-to-bloom corpse flower's Latin name, Amorphophallus titanum, translates into "misshapen phallic giant."  However, Frankie proudly, if mistakenly, explains the Latin name to Grace as the "giant phallus of sexual desire," a perfect fit for their brand!

This visual identity pushes societal conventions aside.

Frankie explains: Who says women peak sexually at 40? Okay, maybe we did peak a few years back, but we're still here and we still want to have orgasms. They're fun! They feel good! Like the corpse flower, it may take us a while to get going, but we need to let women know they have at least one more glorious burst waiting to be released.


3) Dainty old lady


Hoping to force a choice between concepts 1 and 2, Frankie's third concept is a treacly pastel-laden take-off of the incontinence product, Poise Pads. 


Frankie's plan succeeds to some degree. We see Grace wiping her hands with sanitizer as she give Frankie feedback on the concepts. A savvy businesswoman, Grace, is aware that Frankie is trying to force her hand. Grace coyly asks a lot of questions, feigning interest in the Dainty old lady concept.

Concerned, Frankie gets anxious and more animated as Grace asks more questions about the wrong concept. She eventually reveals her hand and tells Grace to move on to the other ideas.

Although Grace is disgusted by the concept of vagina art, she's somewhat drawn to the brazen look of Frankie's first concept, By vaginas, for vaginas. She likes story of female empowerment. But mostly she can't can past the idea of a paint brush in Frankie's hoo-ha.

This leave both women focusing on the Not dead yet concept.

Grace: I think this really nails it. Remember we told the kids that we were going into business making products for women like us? Not dead yet leaves room for us to create all sorts of things, not just...sex toys.

Frankie: Yes! We can do so much to help women our age blossom..bloom...burst!

Grace (enthused): I think you just found the name for our company!

Frankie: Blossom, Bloom, Burst? It sounds like a law firm/florist.

Grace: We'll pick one of those words. They're all Bs.

Frankie: A tribute to Babe! Where is she, by the way? I think we need to include her in important business meeting like this.



.......

Stay tuned for Season 3, Episode 3 of Grace and Frankie, "The field trip."

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Grace and Frankie Season 3 speculative sneak peak
All right, so I mentioned my plans to post a speculative look at Season 3 of Netflix's Grace and Frankie. Well, here it is. Read on for my take
of Season 3 Episode 1 with special attention paid to the pair's business development plans.

Season 3 starts where Season 2 left off. Former businesswoman Grace (Jane Fonda) dives into research related to their virabtor-for-arthritic-women company. Meanwhile, Frankie (Lily Tomlin) anxiously tries to reclaim her standing as an artist with her exhibit just weeks away. Her tried and try combo of vlogging and weed help her calm down, even if they don't do much to improve her focus.

The pair have yet to commit to a name for their company because "Why Bother?" doesn't send the right message. Indeed, they want older arthritic women to bother! They continue to toss around potential names, including a favorite that is an homage to their friend Babe: Sexy Older Babe, or SOB. It's a current front-runner.

In a small effort to make amends to their ex-wives, Robert and Sol promise to file the legal paperwork for free once the women pin down the details of their company.

Grace throws herself into online research. At various points in the episode, she is found washing her hands or using hand sanitizer that she placed next to her laptop.

Frankie is in her studio trying to paint, but mostly smoking pot. Frankie leaves her studio and heads to the kitchen in search of munchies. Grace then showers her with facts.

Grace: Can you believe there's a $3,000 golden dildo?

It's unclear whether Frankie mishears or simply takes joy in making Grace repeat herself.

Frankie (dismissively): Grace, you are not a dog person. Why would you spend $3,000 on a goldendoodle?

Grace (annoyed): A golden vibrator that sells for $3,000! (lighthearted) Have you ever heard of such a thing?

Frankie, being familiar with the topic of vibrators, responds with a barrage of interesting factoids

Grace (smug): Well, aren't you the ghost of vibrators past? But do you know where they are headed?

Frankie (shrieks with laughter): Of course, I know where they are headed: into the vaginas of arthritic older women!

Frankie heads back to the studio.

Grace (shouts): I mean do you know anything about teledildonics?!

Frankie does an about face.

Frankie (sobers up): What now?

Grace: It means you use an app on your phone to control the (stammers, motions with hands). Here, let me show you.

The women huddle over the laptop screen uttering hmms, oohs, aahs and looks of astonishment.

End scene.

Later in the episode Grace's daughter Mallory (Brooklyn Decker) goes into labor. The grandpas were supposed to watch the older grandkids, but the men are stuck in negotiations for their new home, so the kids get dropped off at the beach house.

Unwilling to do something as frivolous as play in the sand, Grace sits the kids down at her computer, sets them up on a favorite website, and fixes herself a drink. She settles down across from them. They click and smile until their eyes glaze over. Grace's eyes begin to glaze a bit as well.

Frankie enters the kitchen in search of another nosh.

Grandkids (giggling) to Frankie: Do you have horns?

Grace (aghast): Kids!

Frankie's artistic confidence ignites as she describes Michaelangelo's Moses sculpture. She starts to explain how it led to the rumor that Jews have horns.

Meanwhile, Grace walks over to the kids and sees a "horny grandmas" pop-up ad on their screen, a result of her earlier research.

Grace (demanding with forced cheer): Kids, go find the sunscreen; we're heading out to the beach!

They excitedly scramble out of the kitchen. Frankie returns to her studio refreshed still talking to herself about art.

Grace unconsciously squirts hand sanitizer onto her palm, rubs hers hands, downs her drink, and follows the kids outside.

End scene.

Click for Episode 2 in which they develop the brand's visual identity.

Grace and Frankie Sneak Peek, Season 3, Episode 1

Grace and Frankie Season 3 speculative sneak peak
All right, so I mentioned my plans to post a speculative look at Season 3 of Netflix's Grace and Frankie. Well, here it is. Read on for my take
of Season 3 Episode 1 with special attention paid to the pair's business development plans.

Season 3 starts where Season 2 left off. Former businesswoman Grace (Jane Fonda) dives into research related to their virabtor-for-arthritic-women company. Meanwhile, Frankie (Lily Tomlin) anxiously tries to reclaim her standing as an artist with her exhibit just weeks away. Her tried and try combo of vlogging and weed help her calm down, even if they don't do much to improve her focus.

The pair have yet to commit to a name for their company because "Why Bother?" doesn't send the right message. Indeed, they want older arthritic women to bother! They continue to toss around potential names, including a favorite that is an homage to their friend Babe: Sexy Older Babe, or SOB. It's a current front-runner.

In a small effort to make amends to their ex-wives, Robert and Sol promise to file the legal paperwork for free once the women pin down the details of their company.

Grace throws herself into online research. At various points in the episode, she is found washing her hands or using hand sanitizer that she placed next to her laptop.

Frankie is in her studio trying to paint, but mostly smoking pot. Frankie leaves her studio and heads to the kitchen in search of munchies. Grace then showers her with facts.

Grace: Can you believe there's a $3,000 golden dildo?

It's unclear whether Frankie mishears or simply takes joy in making Grace repeat herself.

Frankie (dismissively): Grace, you are not a dog person. Why would you spend $3,000 on a goldendoodle?

Grace (annoyed): A golden vibrator that sells for $3,000! (lighthearted) Have you ever heard of such a thing?

Frankie, being familiar with the topic of vibrators, responds with a barrage of interesting factoids

Grace (smug): Well, aren't you the ghost of vibrators past? But do you know where they are headed?

Frankie (shrieks with laughter): Of course, I know where they are headed: into the vaginas of arthritic older women!

Frankie heads back to the studio.

Grace (shouts): I mean do you know anything about teledildonics?!

Frankie does an about face.

Frankie (sobers up): What now?

Grace: It means you use an app on your phone to control the (stammers, motions with hands). Here, let me show you.

The women huddle over the laptop screen uttering hmms, oohs, aahs and looks of astonishment.

End scene.

Later in the episode Grace's daughter Mallory (Brooklyn Decker) goes into labor. The grandpas were supposed to watch the older grandkids, but the men are stuck in negotiations for their new home, so the kids get dropped off at the beach house.

Unwilling to do something as frivolous as play in the sand, Grace sits the kids down at her computer, sets them up on a favorite website, and fixes herself a drink. She settles down across from them. They click and smile until their eyes glaze over. Grace's eyes begin to glaze a bit as well.

Frankie enters the kitchen in search of another nosh.

Grandkids (giggling) to Frankie: Do you have horns?

Grace (aghast): Kids!

Frankie's artistic confidence ignites as she describes Michaelangelo's Moses sculpture. She starts to explain how it led to the rumor that Jews have horns.

Meanwhile, Grace walks over to the kids and sees a "horny grandmas" pop-up ad on their screen, a result of her earlier research.

Grace (demanding with forced cheer): Kids, go find the sunscreen; we're heading out to the beach!

They excitedly scramble out of the kitchen. Frankie returns to her studio refreshed still talking to herself about art.

Grace unconsciously squirts hand sanitizer onto her palm, rubs hers hands, downs her drink, and follows the kids outside.

End scene.

Click for Episode 2 in which they develop the brand's visual identity.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

An Unofficial Sneak Peek at Season 3 of Netflix's Grace and Frankie

Season 3 sneak peak of Grace and Frankie
This is your warning, when I say I'm going to publish an unofficial sneak peek at next year's season of Grace and Frankie, what I mean is I'm making sh*t up about what's ahead on the show. No behind-the-scenes tours or special blogger privileges here.

You see, I nearly lost it during the final moments of the season finale when Grace (Jane Fonda) put her arm around Frankie (Lily Tomlin) and boldly declared they were going into business together:

We're making vibrators for women with arthritis!

The whole scene is destined to be a classic.

Grace and Frankie aspire to make a vibrator with an ergonomic grip that does its job with out too much pressure or stress on delicate body parts. And the device will be accompanied by instructions large type print.

The bottom line is that the two of them are starting a company that will make a physical product. And I work in a business incubator for people who aspire to make physical products (as opposed to software).

A few weeks ago I read Disrupted (affiliate link) by Dan Lyons. Dan was a lifelong journalist who'd worked his way up to be the technology editor at Newsweek. Then, like so many of his peers, he received the boot. At age 50, he had to start over. After all, it's not easy to find well-paying jobs in journalism these days. 

Dan landed at a software start-up, where he was nearly twice the age of his co-workers. Hijinks ensued and he wrote a book about. And now he writes for my favorite show, HBO's Silicon Valley.

Though I lack a traditional career path, I have a Master's degree and I'm good at pivoting, as they say in the start-up world. I've been a dolphin trainer, social worker, team development leader, marketing consultant, freelancer writer, and social media darling. And let's not forget I'm also mom to two teenage boys.

Aside from parenting and marriage, this blog, which I started in 2005, represents one of my life's most sustained commitments. But even when it comes to blogging, I've reinvented myself over the years leaving a sprinkling of websites in my wake. I'm currently most active on The Maker Mom and STEM Kids Chicago, but even those have slowed down since I started my gig at the incubator. However much I slowed down on this site, I could just never bring myself to cut the chord and hit delete.

Past careers aside, I felt a certain kinship as I read Dan's book. I began to think of myself as his female counterpart: a career-changing mom who's worked out of her home (and pajamas) for most of the last 20 years takes a part-time job in a scrappy start-up incubator in the Chicago. Hijinks ensue.

They have, believe me.

Unlike Dan, however, I'm loving the job and have no plans to write a tell-all book. That said, when Grace announced that she and Frankie had an idea for a product that they want to bring to market...BINGO! 

I know that story. I live that story every day. Or at least twice a week when I'm at the incubator. 

I am the female version of Dan Lyons! I can write the story of Grace and Frankie as they develop their product.

Bonus: I'm also a bit like Grace. I have arthritis, wear a brace on my right wrist (due to typing, not masturbation), and have trouble deciphering tiny print.

In short, I felt called to write a storyline for Season 3.

To be clear, actual, paid Hollywood types are already writing the Season 3 scripts. Or perhaps they've already done so. "TV producers love it when you send them scripts on spec. Why don't you do that?" my husband advised me the other day (but only because he was annoyed with me).

I don't plan to write actual scripts and send them to Marta Kaufman, Jane, or Lily. This blog space will do fine. I'm just going to outline Grace and Frankie's story arc as they develop their product. I was compelled to jot out my thoughts the other day. Compelled! 

Admittedly, writing fan fiction for a show about two elderly women whose ex-husbands ran off and got married to each other sounds, well, lame. But, hey, someone has forged this path already. And anyway, the show's main theme is something that has been key in my life: reinvention.

So stay tuned for a completely fictional sneak peak at Season 3 of Grace and Frankie!


Tuesday, June 07, 2016

A New Milestone

I remember walking into my New Mom's Group a bit frazzled, but triumphant, that my tiny infant and I had arrived on time! My celebration was short-lived. No one makes it to New Mom's Group on time. I'd misdirected my energy into meeting a false deadline. That might have been the last time I arrived anywhere on time.

Because we were, by default, early, I watched as the facilitator wrote out name tags for the group members.

Maddie's mom
Jason's mom
Max's mom

Ummm. "Don't we go by our first names?" I naively queried.

"No, you're Isaac's mom now," she replied.

"No, I'm still Kim," I thought, "but I do have an beautiful baby named Isaac. Do not strip me of my identity."

Ultimately I only remembered who was who in relation to their babies, so the name tags did make sense. And now that I'm a dog owner, it's the same thing at the dog park or in training classes. Yes, hi, I'm Tesla's mommy.

And let's me honest, kids do mess with your identity. How can living beings who reside in your house, eat your food, and make you drive them everywhere without paying a cent toward of rent or expenses not mess with your sense of self? Thank goodness they are cute and love you, and think you are the best person ever, at least for a few years.

During the preschool and early elementary years, I was tickled when kids who didn't know my last name would approach me as I volunteered in their classrooms, "Isaac's mom? Can you help me with this?" My heart would swell.

I thought those years were behind me. But just last week at work, I met a college-age intern that my son had worked on a project with. As the young man introduced himself to me, I realized who he was and then said, no doubt in an embarrassingly loud voice, "Oh my gosh! Hi! I'm Isaac's mom!"

He's developed a good reputation* for himself. If I stick around the Chicago tech scene, I feel like this is bound to happen again.

And again.

I'll try to keep my voice down in the future.

*He once so impressed his colleagues, that they mistakenly thought he must have amazing parents. There was some joking that maybe they should have me in to talk about parenting as part of their otherwise tech-focused speaker series. Maybe I had some tips to share? I nearly cried tears of joy, touched by the wonderful impression he was clearly making on his coworkers and that it was my doing, but mostly my husband and I had a good laugh over it.