Monday, October 15, 2018


Planted  a hundred tulip bulbs all by myself, which entailed pulling the annuals out, raking the dirt, adding new dirt, planting the bulb, adding more dirt. And chasing squirrels away. We have more squirrels than people here. I have learned to do a lot of things in the last year-some I should have known how to do like how to pay bills with various codes, dates, etc. How to get things fixed, sometimes by finding a video on you tube and sometimes by figuring out who to call.
 I still am not driving and I doubt I will lick that one, but I have public transportation, uber and friends so it doesn't worry me as much as it did. And Phil can drive most of the time.

Enjoyed the movie, COLETTE.

Enjoyed my first DR. WHO although Phil not so much. He has even less interest in science fiction than me. Our loss, I know.

Started the new Lou Berney book THE NOVEMBER ROAD.

Had periodontal surgery this week and that was not fun, but it's over. 

What about you? 


Anonymous said...

I love the sense of competence you get when you conquer things and get through things. Glad you're getting some of that, even if it is hard.

pattinase (abbott) said...

And it is hard, Margot, to do all the things two people did once as well as nursing care.

Jeff Meyerson said...

That's great about the newly acquired skills. Jackie keeps saying she needs to learn about paying the bills, but she never seems to do it. Frankly, it couldn't be easier.

This week one highlight was the Eagles concert at Madison Square Garden, even though we were in the (relatively) cheap seats upstairs. Glenn Frey's son Deacon is singing with them now, as is country star Vince Gill. Good show. This week: Steely Dan, starting there 9 show "residence" at the Beacon.

We're enjoying the end of the 80 degree weather (in October!) but did it have to go so far, so fast? The last three days haven't been out of the 50s (normal high: 66), and after today it looks like the rest of this week will be the same.

THE NEGOTIATOR by Brendan DuBois was a terrific thriller, one well worth seeking out. And I'm enjoying a newly discovered late collection of stories by Catherine Aird, LAST WRITES.

We had a good time at the annual Ragamuffin Parade on Saturday (sort of an early Halloween, as the little kids dress up and walk down the Avenue with their parents - many dinosaurs this year, though my favorite might have been the dog dressed as a UPS truck), followed by the Third Avenue Festival on Sunday. It was a little brisk for both, but at least it stayed dry.

Also enjoyed the return of MADAM SECRETARY. If only our current administration was that sensible.

George said...

We enjoyed the STEELY DAN concert last week despite people walking up and down the aisles from start to finish. Annoying!

I attended a Library Book Sale in Lockport, NY on Saturday and came away with a box of great books and music CDs...for $3!

Diane returns home tomorrow from helping her sister in Ohio after her total knee replacement surgery.

Self-driving cars are supposed to be on the market in 2020 and I'll be one of the first to buy one. I can drive, but I dislike it.

The leaves are finally starting to change as the weather gets cooler. FALL is finally showing up!

Steve Oerkfitz said...

Patti-my back hurts just reading about your planting. We have a million squirrels around here also. Found walnut leavings on my car hood yesterday. Have both black and gray ones. The black ones are smaller but more aggressive.
Read Wayne Kramer's The Hard Stuff. Brought back a lot of memories including the Belle Isle police riot of 1967. Also read Dale Bailey's In the Night Wood which I liked a lot and reread Lolita and True Grit. Two of my favorite books.
Saw and liked both Bad Day at the El Royale and First Man. Did not like A Star is Born. Found Cooper's songs pretty forgettable and samey.
Been binge watching The Haunting of Hill House.
I hate to think how much a self driving car will cost.

Jeff Meyerson said...

We have the squirrels here too. There's an oak on the corner and the acorns are everywhere.

I picked up a copy of the Lou Berney book at Bouchercon, where it was one of the few giveaways that interested me. Of course, I haven't started it.

pattinase (abbott) said...

We watched the first two episodes of HHH but it seemed to lack a narrative drive. So many characters times two to keep straight. Did it improve. On the east side of Detroit, the black squirrels have entirely won out.
I saw a picture of that, Jeff, and wondered if they were celebrating Halloween early.
I will be right behind you, George.

Gerard Saylor said...

Boy #2's soccer seasons have involved a Parents V. Children game every year. 2-3 years ago I was scoring 6-7 goals with no soccer skills and little effort. Boy #2 is in seventh grade now and on Friday I went to the local St. Vincent De Paul store and got a pair of $8 soccer cleats just so I would not fall over every time some kid zipped by me. I had a good time but I very rarely run hard or sprint and was worn out by the end of the game.

Boy #1 ran in his conference championship for cross country and finished #1 on his team. We have a couple places off being second team all conference. He has really improved over this season.

I've been reading one of F. Paul Wilson's Repairman Jack novels and enjoying it quite a bit. The novel is 1984's THE TOMB and I lucked out in this being the first book in the series.

Gerard Saylor said...

Also, I just finished listening to the first Tarzan novel. Thankfully the racism was surprisingly light. I mentioned this to my wife and she said how the quickly bailed on a Agatha Christie novel because of the overt racism.

Rick Robinson said...

Patti, I hope the squirrels don't dig up those bulbs. Good for you putting them in.

It's been absolutely perfect, beautiful Fall weather here, the trees are either turned or turning and it's glorious. Highs have been in the low 70s with lows in high 40s. Barbara mowed the lawn yesterday (she has a slick little electric mower for our very small lawn) and we figure it may be the last time until Spring. We'll see.

I finally finished with the stack of library books I had check out, the last of them an ebook I didn't like much, and now can choose from the books I have on the short stack of my TBR. Oh good!

@ Jeff: have Jackie pay the bills!
@ George: I wouldn't have a self-driving car if it was free. I enjoy driving. If I can't drive myself, I won't drive at all.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Rick-they have dug them up multiple times. They seem to be in a frenzy this year.
The tricky thing about the bills is there are passwords to get into all of the sites and Phil changed the passwords multiple times and it's hard to get the right one. And some of them have security questions. The only bill we get by snail mail is lawn service. And Phil has never balanced his checkbook in 50 years but luckily now that it's all online I can go into the checking account and see what is there.
Yes, I noticed that with the last time I read Christie, Gerard. And she is also very class conscious. Hard to take for me.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I'm with Rick. No self-driving car here. Besides, I don't trust them. Maybe someday they will be safe, but that day isn't here.

As far as the bills go, I pay the rent by check and occasionally something else pops up, but otherwise I go on the bank site, sign in, select which bill to pay and the amount, click "pay" and that's it. Less than five minutes once a month, maybe three minutes. Of course, when I first did it I had to set up the account, etc. but it's done now, so anyone can do it.

YA Sleuth said...

Motivating to read your accomplishments, thanks for sharing. I should plant some bulbs, maybe...

Jeff Meyerson said...

Jackie said she would walk or buy a bicycle rather than get on a self-drive car, and she doesn't drive.

pattinase (abbott) said...

MY accomplishments should have come many years ago. Our division of labor was too rigid and followed norms of the 1950s.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Living in the city, I bet you don't even drive all that often, Jeff. In suburbia, we drive the car every day. There were years when we put 15,000 miles on the car.

George said...

One of the reasons I dislike driving is the terrible drivers I have to share the road with. Every day I see drivers who don't signal, drive too fast, and are too reckless. Then there's the Road Rage factor. And the people who drive Under the Influence.

I know self-driving cars won't solve all of those problems, but I'm hoping Artificial Intelligence will improve the situation.

Jeff Meyerson said...

True. If it wasn't for the annual drive to Florida we wouldn't be driving more than a few thousand miles a year. I drive most days, but only locally. I would NEVER drive to the city again. Occasionally we go to Long Island and usually drive to D.C. and Connecticut one time each during the year.

In Florida, of course, we have to drive everywhere.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Oh, one more good thing. Our long-lived All Region DVD player has been getting worse and it finally gave up the ghost. We got a new one from Amazon and that smaller and lighter and cost only $38 and plays discs from all regions, so win win.

Gerard Saylor said...

If self driving cars become popular will that mean a spike in alcohol consumption? Drink all you like, you don't have to drive home or arrange a ride.

Steve Oerkfitz said...

Patti-I like HHH but it is developing slowly with a lot of back story. The older sister is played by the daughter of Bill Davidson who owned the Detroit Pistons.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Signaling has become rare. Also if you don't go over the speed limit, people beep at you. I may have to try another episode because there is not much on and we are home more than we used to be. I wish I still had a DVD player. Not sure i can hook one up because the Roku is using the only outlet.

Todd Mason said...

A good surge protector, Patti. To free up some more access for your DVDs and their player.

The skills we have to learn. Or at least it seems like it might be a good idea. I might be reinforcing the back porch, if it's salvageable. I should learn how to fix up the back fence.

I would wait a year or so after the market introduction of the fully self-driving cars, for the shakedown. Around here, people still signal, they just tend to merge, as they have for two decades at least, with three feet of space between your car and theirs. This really isn't sufficient.

GET SHORTY if you haven't looked at it, is worth a look (the Epix tv series, which I believe is on Amazon or Netflix, but should double check).

What's made me happiest of late is the kindness of friends and acquaintances, including several boxes of vintage magazines including Ed Gorman's issues of MYSTERY SCENE, and no lack of other fiction titles and related matter. That I was able to dry out at least some of the books that got wet that I wanted to keep enough to make the effort. Hey, only my cousin decided it would be a good time to try to lecture me on Facebook...and I'll cut him some slack as his life has had even more bumps in it for some time now.

Thanks again for the kind offer.

Todd Mason said...

Oh, hey, this is cute, through you'll run through it relatively quickly:

pattinase (abbott) said...

But I need your address.

pattinase (abbott) said...

GET SHORTY appears only to be on EPIX,which I believe is a pay outlet. We have amazon prime and netflix and not any others. On Amazon you can pay $2 an episode.

Todd Mason said...

That's a bit stiff. Kind of how I'm not yet buying into Hulu, CBS All Access nor paying the newly Extra-Cost Cinemax on Verizon (Oh, you bought the full package? Why don't we make it the not quite full package.)

pattinase (abbott) said...

I have got to find a way to begin again with this cable thing. We are paying too much for too little,