Monday, July 10, 2017

Things That Make Me Happy

Two years ago I came to Huntington Woods from a neighborhood where I rarely saw people on the streets. Now if I look out my window, there is always someone walking, riding their bike, pushing a stroller, skate-boarding. In couples or threesomes. In families, In bike brigades. Many lawns bear signs saying NO HATE HERE or similar sentiments. I am grateful to live in a place where people care about each other. I am grateful to be where people are embracing.

Enjoyed the Fourth of July parade in Huntington Woods. It mostly seems to be about throwing candy and politicians making themselves known but I guess that's normal

Kevin is working on a comic book series called Nuggetman. He has about a dozen issues of it. Nuggetman throws a lot of people in jail. (Kevin seems to like drawing jailhouse pictures). At the end of each issue, he includes a crossword puzzle (just for show) and a page showing how he created Nuggetman. He also enacts his adventures on video with his friends.

He is also getting good on the guitar, especially for a ten-year old. The big difference has been twice a week lessons and Mondays is with the studio's rock band. Learning with other kids instead of just one- to- one has spurred him on. I am amazed at how much music is already tucked into that head.

And I am thrilled at how Kevin's parents make sure he gets to sample everything. This summer he is going to see Treasure Island at Stratford, doing a  hockey camp, doing a tech camp, doing the guitar lessons, doing an all-purpose camp. He has polished off most of Judy Blume in the last few months. I am so sorry for the kids whose parents cannot afford this sort of enrichment. It used to be the schools stepped in with music and art, but no longer. Speaking of which...

I met an artist at an art fair on Saturday who told me he learned his craft of jewelry making while at Cass Tech High School in Detroit. I wonder how many high schools are still able to offer such an specific class. Cass Tech was the jewel of what was once a fantastic school system.

Really enjoyed the movie THE BIG SICK although the combination of Ray Romano and Holly Hunter's quirky voices can wear thin. Note to film-makers: one odd voice is probably enough.

I also found BABY DRIVER rather thrilling. The plot does not hold up to scrutiny but boy, it's a good time. The music is a knockout. The car chases are amazing.

Have enjoyed the series SHETLAND on Netflix. It is so well cast and Scotland looks terrific if a little forbidding.

I really enjoyed Karen Dionne's THE MARSH KING'S DAUGHTER . We were amazed at Karen's knowledge of living in the wilderness but the mystery was solved by an article in a UK paper that explains she did just that for three years. You can read it here.

So what are you up to?


Rick Robinson said...

The garden is lovely, in spite of the heat and some wilting as a result. I'm really happy we have central air conditioning! I'm also enjoying my reading on the Civil War, though I want to get back to genre reading as well.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I am getting a sprinkler system put in. Being on a corner there is way too much lawn for moving individual ones around. Hate to spend the money but....

Jerry House said...

Not happy, but grateful for the Netflix series THE KEEPERS, a documentary about the unsolved murder of a nun in Baltimore in the late 60s and two of her students who would not let the case die. The case lead to sexual abuse in a parochial school and cover-ups by Church, government, and police officials. A fascinating series about ordinary people striving for justice.

Happy, grateful, and chuffed for a good bowl of chili or some hot Italian sausage.

Ditto for good books.

Ditto for some really bad books. (I have been known to revel in my lack of good taste.)

Happy for Kevin's musical ability. I am so tone deaf that my tone deafness is tone deaf, but I dearly love music of (almost) all sorts. Anyone who can play music or can sing adds something positive to the world and its beauty. While visiting a cathedral in France two weeks ago, Christina and her two oldest heard a vocal quartet practicing. She caught a bit of it on her phone and the sounds they made in that inspiring place were absolutely glorious. I hope Kevin's love of music will follow him for life

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

It sounds like you had a great week. I am so impressed with Kevin. I wish I could play the guitar.

We had a good week too. We spent three days in Connecticut with my cousin Nancy and her husband Jerry. Got to see my father's older sister, my Aunt Ruth, who is 96. We spent a day and a half at Mohegan Sun, where Nancy was very lucky gambling (as usual, apparently), winning several thousand dollars and paying for lunch and dinner. We even got an upgrade to a nice suite after Jackie complained.

We finished Season 3 of Orphan Black and are enjoying Bosch, Broadchurch, and The Wire. We did watch Shetland. Let's not forget it is way to the north of most of Scotland.

Saw a couple of movies we'd missed, 20th Century Women - the first time I've ever liked Greta Gerwig - and Florence Foster Jenkins.

And I finished a few books.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I am debating whether to go back and watch the rest of Orphan Black and the rest of Luther. We quit both after Season 2. Also Game of THrones, which we quit in season 4.
I liked THE KEEPERS too, Jerry.
Do you believe in luck? Are there people who win in casinos because they are lucky. I have never been lucky at games.

Todd Mason said...

My parents would take an annual trip to Mohegan Sun in their better years, so that my mother could play bingo and some slot machines and my father blackjack. At those, they usually didn't lose much and would occasionally come out ahead.

Todd Mason said...

Blackjack and bingo being lower-risk, less house-favoring games than most.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

Mohegan Sun is a huge place.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

We liked Season 3 of Orphan Black better than Season 2, despite the addition of the male clones. Helena is a great character.

Steve Oerkfitz said...
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Gerard Saylor said...

I've wondered before if I like music more than the average person. I regularly get CDs from the library. I listen to music at work most of every day, but I have my own office that that contains the sound and won't bother others. I'm glad both my sons have the chance to take music at school. They both play the upright bass though, and our van is busticated at the moment which makes moving the basses difficult.

I'm once again glad for health insurance and sick days at work. I found out I broke a bone in hand three weeks ago when I had a bicycle wreck. I was able to get a 2nd appointment with my primary provider and have an x-ray, saw an orthopedist doctor today, and have a occupational therapy appointment next week.

I've been re-watching Chris Elliott's show EAGLEHEART on Hulu TV. The show is a bizarre mix of absurd and silly and violent.

Aside from trying to fix my van I had a nice weekend with family and got to go in the lake twice. and

Karen Dionne said...

Thanks for the shoutout, Patti, and I'm THRILLED that you enjoyed the book!

pattinase (abbott) said...

We both loved it. You go, girl.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Gerard-I am always thrilled to read about the life you are providing for your family. It seems you have the balance right.I think I listen to music less than most people. I have NPR on most of the day. Have always preferred talk. Not necessarily news but podcasts about books and movies.

Anonymous said...

I'm busy reading Library books. The Spider-Man movie was fun. I'm looking forward to ATOMIC BLONDE.