Monday, September 27, 2021

Monday, Monday


I rewatched ENCHANTED APRIL this week and was somewhat disappointed. I remembered it as less fluff than it turned out to be. I was amazed to see Joan Plowright is still alive. She seemed quite elderly in this thirty-year old movie. The love interests were played by Alfred Molina, Jim Broadbent and the man who plays Foyle. Only the British would find those actors credible as romantic figures but it was okay by me because they are great character actors. Also rewatched LATE QUARTET, which I had forgotten Dustin Hoffman directed. That was actually better than I remembered it and I wonder why Hoffman did not direct more. I would love to retire to a facility with people playing music all day long. Maggie Smith as always stole the show. 

SEX EDUCATION on Netflix is very open in its portrayal of sexuality--even among teenagers. I can't imagine any US show doing this.

Got out with a few friends this week and felt lucky to do so because there was a lot of very heavy rain. 

I took a passel of books out of the library on Monday and returned them unread on Saturday. Still having focus issues. I am listening to a book by Pat Conroy on his reading life, which is okay for my walks. His defense of GONE WITH THE WIND is a little suspect though. I am almost tempted to read it again and see if I find the strengths that he did in it. Josh and Julie (Son and daughter-in-law) got tkts to two plays in the next few weeks. I am somewhat worried about maskless people. Michigan is completely immobilized on a mask mandate. Most people favor it but the ones that don't are ready to go to war. Hope your state is more rational. 

What's up with you?


Steve A Oerkfitz said...

Mentioning Dustin Hoffman I just finished watching Straight Time. I had seen it several times before. One of Hoffman's best but it seems relatively unknown. Watched Clint Eastwood's Cry Macho on HBO Max. Pretty bad. Painful to watch the 91 year old actor romancing a 40 year old actress.
Watched Midnight Mass on Netflix. Done by the same guy who did their Haunting of Hill House. Disappointing. It was interesting enough to keep me watching but ultimately too full of plot holes to work.
Read Montana 1948. Loved it. Will eventually be reading more of Larry Watson's books. Also read Denise Mina's historical short novel Rizzio and reread The Far Side of the Dollar by Ross MacDonald.
Spent Saturday with my oldest daughter, her daughter and her daughter. Makes me feel ancient.
Weather cooling off just a bit too fast for me. Fall means I can't sit outside. Now I have to stay cooped up inside for 8 months with far less contact with others.
I know you got your third covid shot but the drugstores here wouldn't give me my third when I inquired. Said I had to wait 8 months. Which would be another two weeks.

Jerry House said...

Cooler this week; sunny without the oppressive heat. No pounding rainstorms that we had been getting the past few weeks. Fewer people on the beach this weekend, which was fine for me also.

Still fighting the dealership over the car which broke down two days after we bought it. It's a toss-up over who will win. They are blaming a little computerized thingbob which takes a week to get -- that explains part of the problem and they are conveniently forgetting the other parts. In the meantime we're driving a 2019 Jeep Cherokee which is sucking up all the gas on the Florida Panhandle. Hoping to get the whole mess resolved later today. (Jessie, in the meantime, managed to get a new car without any problem.)

The saga of Jerry's mouth continues. My gums are healing well and have shrunk to the point that the dentures don't fit. Will also try to get thaat fixed this week. In the meantime I still can't chew nor speak very coherently. I'm beginning to have dreams about real food.

Jack's first soccer game of the season ended with a tie, 3-3. Jack scored all three points for his team in the first half (a hat trick! Woot!). Given, they were pretty ugly goals and he doesn't bent it like Beckham but he displayed a lot of grit and enthusiasm, but a goal is a goal and he (and we) are proud of his first hat trick. Jack especially has a flare for the sliding kick because it's just cool to his nine-year-old brain.

Watched many forgetful things on television. I know there's many good things out there but a) we're not finding them and b) we're were just not in the mood for a lot of shows. Maybe next week. Still reading a lot of short stories, many from Donald A. Wollheim's Year's Best Science Fiction collections, which ran for 26 years (1965-1990). I found the stories to be especially good in the first seven years when Terry Carr was his co-editor.

Despite a few setbacks and concerns, it's been a rewarding week for me. Everyone is happy and relatively healthy. I still often pause and take in the wonder and beauty that is all around me. I'm married to the most wondeful womanninthe world and I continuemto get lost in her smile and her eyes.

On the buzz-kill side, Florida appears to be continuing the De Santis program of killing off its citizens. Now if a child comes down with Covid, it's up to each individual parent whether to keep the child at home or have him/her remain in school to allow the infection to spread. Evidently the schools are no longer allowed to quarantine students. The false and dangerous De Santis logic plays well with the MAGA crowd and our governor hopes it will propel him to the White House, even as the bodies pile up.

What's also piling up, Patti, are my wishes that you have a great week ahead!

Margot Kinberg said...

I'm glad you got the chance to go out with friends, Patti. In these times, I think we especially need those bonds. You've reminded me, too, that I should watch Last Quartet. I've meant to, but haven't...

Jeff Meyerson said...

Yes, Joan Plowright was only 61 in ENCHANTED APRIL! She certainly seemed a lot older. We watched one of the last KAVANAGH Q.C.s on Saturday, and a guest start was Virginia McKenna, who is also (like Plowright) still alive at 91). Here she played the "elderly" (though in her late 60s at the time) mother of one of the main characters. My mother was a huge fan of ENCHANTED APRIL. The glamorous Polly Walker is playing not so nice (or glamorous) roles in things like LINE OF DUTY these days. I liked QUARTET a lot too. Hoffman did a fine job of directing his first film. NO, you can't go wrong with Maggie Smith. ENCHANTED APRIL is certainly the first time I really remember Alfred Molina, though he had been in other things we saw (RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, LETTER TO BREZHNEV, PRICK UP YOUR EARS). We have often discussed British vs. American casting practices, as in "she would never be cast in that role on American television." We are so accustomed to skinny, gorgeous people being cast here, no matter if they can act the role or not, that it is sometimes jarring to see more "real" looks on British shows.

I liked a few of Pat Conroy's books very much and might look for this one, which I missed.

Weather has been pretty good and we got out to eat (outdoors) a couple of times. I got five books read this week, so I'm happy about that. We have a show and a concert in four weeks for our Anniversary, but everyone has to be vaccinated and masked here, so less worried, especially as we are getting our booster shots this week.

We watched (finally) CONCRETE COWBOY on Netflix. Thought the premise and background was fascinating but wasn't overly impressed with the result, to be honest. And it was yet another movie where one of the major character (here Idris Elba) smokes constantly, which I've been noticing more and more, and which I really don't like seeing.

George said...

After a week of rain, Western NY now faces a week cool, dry weather: ideal FALL weather!

We've invited two friends to eat lunch here with us on Wednesday. We'll do Take-Out from JUST SAY CHEESECAKE, one of our favorite local restaurants. I'll call the order in, go pick it up, and we should have a nice lunch in our socially distanced Dining Room. Both friends are fully vaccinated.

The Buffalo Bills won 43-21 yesterday. Our nephews were at the game and reported a picture-perfect setting for the big win...although it was a bit breezy.

I'm starting to weed my book collection by taking boxes of Science Fiction novels to the OLD EDITIONS BOOKSHOP. Time to downsize. Stay safe!

Jeff Meyerson said...

Steve, agree on STRAIGHT TIME. My late mother in law touted it, and for once I agreed with her taste. Here they are saying 6 months before the booster shot. We had our last shot 7 months ago.

Jerry, the sliding kick is cool to my 72 year old brain too! Bravo for the hat trick.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I saw Straight Time not too long ago and Hoffman was impressive. It was a pretty realistic look at post-prison life if I remember it. Disappointed MIDNIGHT MASS isn't better. I heard good things about Linklater's acting in it. I have read most of Watson although the most recent one didn't do much for me.
Nobody seems to want books here. Most of the libraries are no longer taking them. So paperbacks are going into my recycling bin now. Luckily a charity event took 12 bags.
Jerry's dental stories are terrifying. And so is Florida politics.
Had a wonderful meal at a restaurant in Plymouth, MI last night. We sat outside and it was a lovely night and the food was amazing.
Polly Walker was gorgeous but all of them were to me.

Gerard Saylor said...

Decent week for me and have a new bathroom light/fan combo to try and install. Hopefully the old fan shares the same electrical connectors as the new one. If not I'll have to hire someone to fix our old wiring.

I still ponder taking an asbestos removal class for about $600 and renting the needed equipment rather than pay a couple grand for a company to do it.

I have been listening to SEASON OF FEAR by Brian Freeman and don't like it much. One section had him comparing a slurping sound to a "messy blowjob". Other sections about women are kinda creepy, as where one female character is staring at a waitress's large bust. The novel is set in FL and everyone is beautiful - he keeps reminding us about this - and there are lots of rich people.

I'm still not focusing on regular books and have 3-4 I just need to return to the library.

Todd Mason said...

Mostly happy political news out of Europe this morning...small favors! Likewise, Ninja the cat had one of her canines removed when she had her claws clipped on Friday, and seems rather less uncomfortable on all counts. We are middle-aged people with our middle-aged cat.

Rather enjoyed what few I've seen so far of WELLINGTON PARANORMAL, a spinoff sitcom from WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS, and playing in the US on the CW broadcast network, and on their online forum (presumably with ads) as well as on Hulu and HBO Max, et al.

Oddly enough, there's been no lack of remarkably comely UK actors, even with their willingness to cast favoring talent...I'm not too sure we get to see the pretty talentless that much anymore even in the domestic productions that aren't leaning on being exploitation...but, as we know, the relatively small industry there v. here does tend to make utility players out of everyone in British acting, even yet.

Is there anything memorable in his defense of GWTW? I assume the novel? I wish I understood the hostility to masks...comfortable reusable ones are often free, and Gosh Darn My Safety IS Part of My Liberty, as is the safety of others.

May everyone's health matters resolve to the better...I won't go into my own organ recital.

pattinase (abbott) said...

He raised a point I had not considered. Southern women endured such hardship during the Civil War that they have carried a hatred of northerners ever since. The men at war did not starve or suffer rape and indignities like the women. No other group of Americans since has endured what they did. Not sure it's persuasive.

Steve A Oerkfitz said...

Patti-Hamish Linklater was very good in Midnight Mass. Probably the best thing about it.

Todd Mason said...

That is a point that would've stuck in living memory in Mitchell's day (and one I hadn't applied to the novel, where as I recall it Butler's rape of O'Hara is treated as No Big Deal/just a passionate man doing what he will)...less so now. But, then, the notable divides aren't North/South much anymore, as your fellow Michigan citizens can be keen to remind you.

Todd Mason said...

Brian Freeman sounds like the kind of writer Matt Gaetz would like to kick back with, Gerard!

Much sympathy with the big decisions at your house (and yours, Patti...and with the cars, Jerry...)

Rick Robinson said...

Pretty normal week here, the weather was in the upper 80s but today is cooler with Chance of rain. I hope it comes, we really, really need it. I was thinking, with all of the TV you all watch, you must have nice, comfortable chairs or sofas. I could use such a one. I have 6 library books here, and yesterday took 2 back, unfinished. Must get reading.

We have appointments for our Pfizer booster shots Wednesday, six months and a day after our second shot. I’ll be glad to have it, though I rarely go anywhere around other people.

@ Jerry: why is three called a “hat trick”?

TracyK said...

I just read a piece about who can get the booster in California right now. And realized that we got the Moderna vaccine so we cannot get the booster until they have one. Which is fine, I had just forgotten that. Everyone that I encounter is wearing masks, except when eating outdoors, which is OK. All indoor spaces in California (or at least Santa Barbara?) require masks indoors, and no one is complaining in places I visit. We went to the book sale five times over the ten days it was open and everyone was masked. And except for Glen's doctor visits and the book sale, we just don't go out much.

I finished reading THE STRANGER DIARIES by Elly Griffiths. It took me a long time to finish reading it but I loved it, so that did not matter. The next book I read was HOME TO ROOST by Andrew Garve (pseudonym of Paul Winterton) and I enjoyed that one as well. That was my first book by Garve. Much faster read also.

Last night I started reading CATCH A FALLING SPY by Len Deighton (also titled TWINKLE, TWINKLE LITTLE SPY). Deighton is one of my favorite authors so I am enjoying it. It has been five years since I read one of his novels.

We finished watching the last season of BOSCH, and we have started watching LEVERAGE: REDEMPTION. Also rewatching BROOKLYN 99. Plus all the sci fi stuff we have been rewatching forever.

My husband is off to one of his pre-op visits for his second cataract surgery this morning. The surgery will happen on October 5th. Work is continuing on replacement of the asphalt driveway with pavers in front of our row of 16 condominiums. It was stalled for two days but a lot of progress was made at the end of last week. It is messy, loud, and inconvenient, so I hope the results are nice.

Todd Mason said...

Good luck to your husband (my second cataract surgery, performed while I was conscious, was a Weird experience but not Too trying) and to you both with the driveway, Tracy!

Jeff Meyerson said...

Rick, according to Wikipedia the term "hat trick" comes from cricket in 1858. H. H. Stephenson took three wickets with three consecutive balls and fans took up a collection for him and presented him with the hat bought with the proceeds, or so the story goes. I am most familiar with the term in ice hockey, for scoring three goals in one game.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Just back from an upscale grocery store where at most 20% were masked. Michigan is the new Mississippi. (Or Atlanta). No clerks were masked.

TracyK said...

Thanks for the good thoughts, Todd. We would probably not be so anxious about this surgery if we had not had bad experiences after his first cataract surgery. He had had previous problems for years with retinal tears, but that meant that the improvement in that eye was marginal and he had further surgery on his retina. So he worries about potential loss of vision, which of course could happen to anyone. And actually he is being very optimistic.

Todd Mason said...

Yeah. One wonders if the clerks were ordered Not to be...or just hate having one on for four hours straight. If I was working a register, I sure would, but I'm real glad to not be running a register at the moment. (At least it drowns out the repetitive Muzak.)(Mostly.)

Or the New Fairbanks, AK...only with fewer native-nations folks. Or, at least, Fairbanks's climate is reaching toward Detroit's...gotta go make my Wegmans/Trader Joe's/B&N/PetCo/Target run soon ("Who's Pampered?"), for me and the XX fellow mammals. Hope the transportation back and forth wasn't too taxing.

Todd Mason said...

Well, better luck even more, Tracy...I was probably lucky(?) to get my cataracts in my 40s. The new replacement lenses are better than even when I got mine, I gather...small favors!

Rick Robinson said...

Thanks, Jeff. Fingers crossed, Tracy.