Monday, February 22, 2021

Still Here

And two shots to boot. I am sick at heart at the long times some people are having to wait for them though. It was bound to roll out unevenly but it seems too unevenly. And other countries have an even harder time getting the vaccines.

Cannot say enough good things about NOMADLAND. It is really a character study although the reviews don't really say that. There are people who need to wander and suffer the vicissitudes that come with it. And this is Fern. It is a terribly hard life, but she just is meant for the road no matter the cost--as are many of the people she meets in the western states this takes place in. It is not a beautiful landscape to me-I like water, green, flowers. She likes the dusty, rocky desert. I so hope McDormand and the director win Oscars for this film. It is not a crowd-pleaser though.

It's A Sin (HBO-MAX) is even more depressing. It is the story of how AIDS came to the UK. But the acting and the story are terrific. These are good people who were shot down in their prime. Very sad but worth watching.
So sad to be finished Ted Lasso, which was pure pleasure on Apple-TV. The Morning Show was pretty dreadful despite great actors. 
Reading ANXIOUS PEOPLE by Frederick Backman, which is humorous and gentle and also THE LAST BUS TO WISDOM by Ivan Doig. This is Doig's last novel.

We are supposed to hit 40 this week. Hurrah!
What are you up to?


Steve A Oerkfitz said...

Also got my second shot of vaccine. No side effects.
Watched Nomadland yesterday. Great movie. Not a life that would appeal to me. Tried watching First Cow but found it very slow and gave up. Will probably try watching it again because of all the great reviews. Enjoyed Behind Her Eyes on Netflix and 30 Coins and The Investigation on HBO.
Read Tricky by Josh Stallings which was okay but not great. Now reading Good Neighbors by Sarah Langan. Trying to read at least one short story every day. I have a lot of story collections on my tbr pile. I have a tendency to favor novels and need to remedy that. Right now I am reading stories by Patricia Highsmith. They remind me a lot of Roald Dahl.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Most of those things we don't have - no Hulu, no Apple TV, no HBO Max (our TV is too old to get it), etc. Looking forward to NOMADLAND very much. Have always liked McDormand.

Finished first series of MODUS. Jackie noticed again something we used to notice with British actors in the '70s, before they got so much better at it (back then, the only ones who seemed to get it right were Laurence Olivier and Peter Sellers) - a lot of Scandinavian actors who try to do "American" find it easiest to do a Southern accent. Star Melinda Kinnaman was born in Sweden to American parents and speaks flawless American English, but some in smaller roles (like a supposed FBI agent) lay on the thick Southern drawl. Pretty well done series, though the last episode dragged a bit to the obvious conclusion. Will be interesting to see the second series, with Kim Cattrall as the American President (!).

Jackie did convince me at last to subscribe to MHz Choice, which has a ton (2500 hours!) of the European dramas we like best. So many series now seem to give you the first series on Netflix oe Prime, then you need to get another service to see later ones. She wanted series two of INSPECTOR MANARA (one was on Prime), which is on MHz. But we are also able to see INSPECTOR (COMMISSARIO) MONTALBANO, which is pretty faithful to the Sicilian series by Andrea Camilleri. We have many others lined up, including BECK.

The last two episodes of ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL were better than the earlier ones, so the next series should be watchable. 30 COINS reached its bloody conclusion, leaving a clear path to another series. We'll be watching when they do it. THE INVESTIGATION is probably realistic as to a police investigation (based on the true story of the journalist who went to interview the inventor on his homemade submarine, only to be murdered by him, but it makes less than compelling viewing. The two main characters were actors from BORGEN. And speaking of that great show, the sleazy right wing political leader is the hotel owner (and really awful) in the mostly fun Danish show SEASIDE HOTEL, set in 1928.

What else are we watching? Second series of MOSSAD 101. Third series of THE GOOD PLACE, Second series of SCHITT'S CREEK. Various other things.

We haven't heard anything to the contrary, so are looking forward to our second shots of the Pfizer vaccine on Thursday morning (fingers crossed). NYU Langone is much more efficient and on the ball than Mayor de Blasio, believe me. The weather (after another four inches of snow) is changing for the better, as this week is supposed to be in the 40s all but one day (Friday).

We're doing OK for the most part. Unlike some of you, I am not having a problem sitting home for the most part. That is pretty much what I did those years when Jackie was at school and I was working at home. We do go out shopping and to restaurants (take out only, though when it gets warmer we might consider eating inside, if the place is mostly empty), so it isn't like we are totally housebound, only mostly. February is almost over and Spring will soon be here. Don't let this crap get you down.

pattinase (abbott) said...

On Modus on my prime, you have to buy each episode. Maybe I can watch them on PBS Passport to the Arts. I will check.
I would be doing a hell of a lot better if I didn't have to have a cerebral angiogram.

George said...

After 16 days of temperatures below 32 degrees, we're finally in the mid-30s today! But, snow is in the forecast for tomorrow.

NOMADLAND is on our Watch List for this week. We finished the Season One finale of MISS SCARLET AND THE DUKE last night. Ho-hum.

Other than sore arms, our second Moderna Covid-19 shots didn't cause any side-effects. However, we know a dozen people who have had their shots postponed because of the weather and lack of vaccine. We lucked out, but others are suffering.

Biden better get the Stimulus Package passed soon. So many restaurants around here are closing every day!

Rick Robinson said...

It's raining and VERY windy (35-45 mph) here, but the temp may get to 45. We haven't watched anything but the usual news shows Barbara watches weekdays nights (NBC local, national, CBS local, national;, PBS Newshour, 11th Hour with Brian Williams). I have been reading essays and letters by E. B. White, and a long short story by H. Beam Piper, and some of Mary Oliver's lovely poetry. We have a Hornblower movie on DVD sitting here, maybe watch it this week. I had to install a new receiver, and we're now having sound problems. I can't diagnose the problem.

We're now hoping for vaccine shots in May, but it may be June. We're both now eligible, but the program here is a mess, including getting appointments, plus shortages.

Jeff Meyerson said...

OK, we tried to check the Prime and ended up subscribing to PBS Masterpiece for $5.99 a month! Now we got Modus (Sweden), Professor T (Belgium), Seaside Hotel (Denmark), Before We Die (Sweden), and the one Jackie really wanted, Thou Shalt Not Kill (Italy). The first series of these were all on various PBS stations (we got two series of Professor T), but we missed the last two episodes of the first series of Thou Shalt Not Kill (it's like many European series in that each story is comprised of two parts, 45 minutes each). This one is set in Turin, with the lead Inspector a young woman whose personal issues have to do with her mother getting out of prison where she served time for killing her husband (though there is some doubt that she really did it). Actually, the second series is showing now on one of our channels, but there are four series (so far).

Jerry House said...

I'm very glad you managed to get both doses of the vaccine, Patti, and I'm hoping the angiogram will not point to other problems.

It's beginning to warm up here, although there is still a strong breeze. We did go the beach yesterday (still bundled up) and watched the waves, Relaxing. Jessie brought donuts from Krispy Creme and, with the breeze, it turned out they were sand-flavored.

Jack has been really getting into his basketball team. He scored a basket last week and Saturday put in two foul shots. I like his coach, who is stressing keeping your positionss and teamwork. The opposing coach Saturday was the loud, bullying type who urged his team to gang up on whatever opponent had the ball. His coaching style did not work well -- their team lost by over a dozen points (remember, these are eight- and nine-year olds, so the score more resembles a basball game than a baskettball game). It was good to see Jack and his friends work together and have fun.

Jack also finally got his own pet: a young bearded dragon named Spike. He (she?) is small at present and has a yellowish body with some red markings on his face. Very sweet. He has his own glass cage with heat lamp and a hammock, which he loves. The cats love to sleep on the wire mesh roof of the cage because of the warmth of the lamp; luckily they can't remove the wire mesh or Spike would become dinner. Jack is over the top happy and extremely responsible. He seems to have matured so much over the past few months. He's thinking of changing Spike's name and is going over a list of 1500 beared dragon names. Christina and Erin like "Noodle." I suggested "Tastes Like Chicken" but no one listens to me.

The bridge to Pensacola is almost rebuilt. They hope to open it on March 22, with two lanes on one end, expanding to four lanes on the other, and with the bridge fully completed by the 31st. Can't wait. Most of the shopping is over the bridge and it has been a hassle to go 20 miles out of our way for the detour.

Enjoying WANDAVISION and John Oliver's return. Watched a couple of forgetful movies on Netflix, including APOLLO 18, about the secret, never-revealed last mission to the moon with space monsters. Re-watched season 3 of HINTERLAND and season 2 of DEAD WIND. Why do Scandanavian actresses plying cops never brush their hair?

Read a few short stories this week, but spent most of my time finishing up edward Wagenknecht's SIX NOVELS OF THE SUPERNATURAL. I read the first volume in the book -- Mrs. Oliphant's A BELEAGUERED CITY -- last, and just as well. Interesting concept but tedious writing, the same as two ofnthe other six novels. If I had read that one first, I may not have gone on to the others. Continuing to read WIELAND on the computer but haven't had much time to devote to it. Enjoying it, though.

Today is National Margarita Day. Please celebrate responsibly and enjoy your week!

Gerard Saylor said...

A lot of snowfall last night but a high of 37 degrees today.

I've been reading DARKLING HALLS OF IVY that Lawrence Block put together. I finished listening to GANGSTERLAND by Tod Goldberg and it was excellent. A Chicago mob hitman screws up, his death is faked, he has sis months of plastic surgery, and becomes a rabbi in Las Vegas. I expected this to be a comedy but it's pretty dark with sociopath characters and plenty of murders.

Boy #1 has heard back from two colleges WI and Il and accepted to both. We're hoping to do some college visits during Spring Break. His mother and I both received emails from IL announcing his acceptance. As she wrote. "Apparently they know that teenagers don't always share important news with parents."

pattinase (abbott) said...

Megan went to Il at Champagne Urbana for a semester as a grad student and discovered she didn't want to be a journalist and took off for NYU, more for the location than the program. Madison always seems like a great place. We have a friend with a kid in law school there.
Exotic pets must be a FL thing.
It is absolutely miserable here today, George. Cold slush.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Jerry, Karppi may not comb her hair on Deadwind, but we just watched Modus, where Inger Johanne Vik took THREE showers (and washed her hair) in the last episode of series one.

Gerard Saylor said...

Good thing for Megan she figured out the career change within the first semester. She and I are about the same age and may have overlapped - different programs of course. Boy #1 has been driven by the programs at two exclusive schools. I don't know how much location is a factor but nearby mountain bike riding locations would be an influence.

I gotta say that with Hulu, HBO, Netflix, Prime, Disney, and Showtime I have trouble keeping track of which service has which series. Prime has a fun selection of B&W crime dramas from the 50s and I've watched a few of those.

I've been watching LITTLE THINGS on HBO and it's OK, but I've watched it and thought, "Oh, another movie with Denzel Washington chasing a killer."

Rick Robinson said...

Half a million people are dead from Covid 19, and vaccine should be flooding America. Instead a disorganized, confused morass of systems to get appointments prevents us from getting the protection we need.


I’ve given up, deciding I’ll be staying home isolated for the rest of my life. At least I can read. For now. Very depressing.

Margot Kinberg said...

Glad you got your shots, Patti! I can't wait until they're available where I am.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I would feel just like you, Rick, and can't imagine why your governor is making the decision to hold it back from those over 65. Things in Michigan are going pretty well for those allowed to get them (over 65, teachers, cops, etc). Four places I signed up with have contacted me in the last week to offer me an appt. And the numbers of sick people have plummeted. Fingers crossed.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The state has distributed a total of 2,315,665 COVID-19 vaccine doses as of Thursday, Feb. 18, when the data was last updated — with 1,140,165 vaccines from Pfizer vaccines and 1,175,500 from Moderna. Michigan has administered 1,787,509 of the vaccine doses

Jeff Meyerson said...

Some states have it together much better than others. In Florida, they seem to be giving it out willy nilly to anyone who shows up, almost no questions asked. In Connecticut, they already announced when they will be giving vaccines to 20 and 30 year olds! (May, I think.) New York says they've given out 93% of the first doses they have - 2,228,283 out of 2,406,535.
1,155,870 second doses out of 1,337,275 have also been given out.

Rick Robinson said...

I think the Governor put teachers first here because there are more parents who want their kids back in school (out of the house) who vote than seniors who vote. Politics, not public health.

There should have been a National Vaccination Program with all states and all vaccine supplies coordinated in a single database easily accessed and vaccines received. Not the jumbled mess we have. I know Biden is trying, but many of the States seem to have their x@#$% up their #%%&#.

I'm disgusted and depressed. I'm reading a little, sleeping a lot, and staring out the window at the rain. Bah.

TracyK said...

Completely spaced out about your Monday post yesterday. Don't know where my mind was. Partly on my gardening (weeding, pruning).

Anyway, I am in the same boat as Rick and Margot re vaccines. Even though I am 72 and my husband is 70, the closest we have come is registering so that someday we can get an appointment for the vaccine. It bothers me more that California's vaccine response is so haphazard, than when I get mine. We are just staying home except for grocery shopping anyway, and would continue that after getting vaccines.

Watching: Queen's Gambit and our other ongoing series, Mission Impossible, L&O: Criminal Intent, and Babylon 5.

Reading: One very big book ... CARRY ME HOME, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA: The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution, about 650 pages of text. And also, a reread: MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS, because we just watched the Albert Finney adaptation on the weekend.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

The vaccine rollout in Texas is a mess as well. No sign of the shots yet for me.

We were lucky power and water wise and kept both on the entire storm event. Stress city.

I am exhausted and the grief has been very bad the last few days--again--so I leave you all to it. Hope and pray the testing goes well.