Monday, March 04, 2024

Monday, Monday


Todd Mason said...

Slow yet busy week for me. New diabetes meds taking some getting used to. Lots of naps. Catching up on HBO with (UK) Channel 4 series I AM, mostly relationship drama anthology. Kate Winslet the star of the most recent one. HBO is in the Winslet business at the moment.

Hope everyone else is having a better, and certainly not a worse, week, not that mine has been too trying...

My heavily data-mined blog went over 2.5 million hits yesterday.

Hope things are going better for you in Southerly Cali than it has been for the Sierra Nevada folks! for a decent example of THE THOM HARTMANN SHOW. for a good discussion of Brooks/Einstein and Reiner's careers, as interviewed by the trio at CONAN O'BRIEN NEEDS A FRIEND.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Hope you're having a great time in San Diego, Patti. We had some thunderstorms with torrential downpours here yesterday, but overall the weather has been pretty good.

Same old, same old for us - books, television, restaurants, walks, internet. VERA is back on Britbox with series 13, and DEATH IN PARADISE with their series 13 too. We're about to start series 2 of THE TOURIST (on Netflix), enjoying LOUDERMILK and NORTHERN EXPOSURE. We wrapped up the third series of ASTRID (fourth has been on in France already), and we're watching the second of three series of the British cop show NO OFFENCE (Acorn, I think).

I enjoyed Shannon Reed's WHY WE READ more than I expected to. Jackie really liked Ashley Poston's THE DEAD ROMANTICS and is starting the new J. D. Robb book. I'm reading short stories by Nathan Ballingrud, Jeffrey Marks, and Elizabeth Strout (OLIVE KITTERIDGE).

New York hit a record 68 degrees yesterday!

Jerry House said...

It's been a contemplative week here.

Eighteen years ago last week, Jessie's husband Michael died suddenly of a heart attack. He was 31, getting ready to play golf with a friend when he collapsed in the living room in from of Jessie and the girls, who were 7 and 9. It was one of the worst days of my life, and certainly the worst day Jessie and the girls ever experienced. He was a great guy and truly loved his family. The universe, uncaring, still went on.

About thirty years ago, Christina's first job after college was with am ambulance company. Her partner, Chris, was a super great guy. Chris married Jamie, another person they worked with, and they went on and had some kids and a great life together. Chris ended up on the Loudon County Fire Department. a few weeks ago, they were called to a house fire in Sterling, Virginia. The house had an underground gas tank that no one knew about. When the tank exploded Chris and a number of other firefighters were in the house. One firefighter died, Chris and one other were seriously injured, more than half a dozen others also sustained injuries. A number of nearby homes also suffered; evidently half a dozen of them are no longer safe for habitation. The house the exploded was a mere shambles and re4cue workers had to dig through the ruin to find the victims. Chris ended up in a burn unit ICU with second degree burns on his face and hands. Jamie told Christina that after several weeks of intense treatment, Chris was allowed to come home. We know nothing about his current condition nor what type of permanent damage might have been done. The universe, uncaring goes on as some great people we knew three decades ago have to face a new and different life.

As I said, a contemplative week.

Life, however, goes on in the Panhandle. Friday evening Mark brought home a one-week-old red-handed tamarin whose mother had thrown home on the ground. The baby monkey had a stuffed owl that he clung to and had imprinted one. Mark had to feed him -- his name is Spruce -- every two hours with an eye dropper. (Mark did not get much sleep that night.) Spruce was as cute and as sweet as you would expect a week-old tamarin to be. Today Mark is driving to Fort Lauderdale for a job interview with the Gator Boys at Everglades Holiday Park. (The Gator Boys had a reality show on animal Planet that ran for six seasons.) Mark has been at his current zoo for a year now and feels it's time to take another step closer to his ultimate goal of working with reptiles, both venomous and otherwise. If it pans out, this could be a good ground floor opportunity for him. Mark has a fantastic work ethic and all I can say is, the Gator Boys would be foolish if they don't hire him.

While Mark is in Fort Lauderdale, Walt will be heading out on Wednesday for Thailand, where he is scheduled to photograph a mixed martial arts championship. He'll be there for a couple of weeks and is voer the roof with excitement.

The following day, Thursday, would have been Kitty's 75th birthday. We'll be celebrating with either a full English tea or with Greek food, her favorite meals (excepting chocolate, of course). Last year's attempt at an English tea was a bust. We had booked a place in Alabama that sounded great in the advertisements, but it turned out to be better known for its old-fashioned, downhome Southern cooking whose idea of an English tea was teabags. At least it was next door to a great used book store, so all was not not lost.

Speaking of bookstores, we are gearing up for an end-of-April trip to South Carolina to celebrate Amy's birthday. She found a large used bookstore there that occupies over 8000 square feet of books (!!!); for some reason that seems like a logical destination for both celebration and our family. Amy has also renamed her dog from Macaroni to Macaroni Bad Girl. The dog appears to accept her new name as her due.

-- more to come --

Diane Kelley said...

I went to see DUNE, PART TWO and enjoyed it. It made $81.5 million in the U.S. and $178 million worldwide. CNBC had a headline that made me chuckle: DUNE SPICES UP THE BOX OFFICE.

Western NY is projected to break March 4 records with a 70 degree temperature today. The Normal temperature is 37 degrees. Global warming is a thing.

Diane is hosting her Book Club meeting today. I'm in charge of making coffee, pouring wine, and staying out of the chatty discussions with the Book Club members. I'm to be seen...but not heard.

Patrick is in Dublin, Ireland for a GOOGLE conference. Katie is planing on driving here for the Eclipse in April since the airlines are boosting prices for the event. Stay safe!

Jerry House said...

-- nattering on --

Speaking of bad dogs, Jolly the Golden retriever ate a goodly portion of the jigsaw puzzle I had been working on. **sigh** And speaking of trips, we have again scheduled a pavilion at Blackwater State Park for Easter. Mark may be in Fort Lauderdale so we probably won't get a repeat of last year when he went into the swamp barefooted to capture a copperhead by hand.

Jessie finally managed to schedule a fence installation for next Monday for her back yard. It's a good-sized yard and will give Chicken Nugget and Macaroni Bad Girl plenty of room to run.

Erin has decided to take up crocheting. Her first project is a turtle and she's doing a fantastic job of it. Erin has mad skills with anything she does.

Once again, we've scheduled a pavilion at Blackwater State Park for Easter. It's always a good, relaxing day. Mark may be in Fort Lauderdale so we may not get a repeat of last year when he went into the swamp barefooted to capture a copperhead by hand. Just as well.

It was a misty morning at the beach yesterday. It was warm and breezy and the waves (what we could see of them) were lovely. The sound of the Gulf was relaxing. There was a surfboarder who kept popping in and out of the mist. Near us was a toddler with a large blue ball. He would jump up and down jiggedy-jig a few times before he would kick the ball, which then travelled up a just a few feet. when he finally got near the water, his mother picked him up and began kicking the back back to their blanket -- she would jump up and down jiggedy-jig a few time before she would kick the back a few more feet. The little boy thought that was great, and so did I. Sometimes it's the most simple moments that help make a day.

Watched the latest episodes of VERA and DEATH IN PARADISE. Also rewatched IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE, a 1953 Science Fiction flick with Richard Carlson and Barbara Rush, based on a story idea by Ray Bradbury. I hadn't realized it before, but it had an early appearance by Russell Johnson, the Professor from GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. For some reason that made me happy.

Not many books read this week. After reading his collection of articles THE CRIME OF YOUR LIFE last week, I went on to three more collections of articles by Lawrence Block: the updated edition of GENERALLY SPEAKING, which contains al 33 columns he wrote for a stamp collecting magazine (I have zero interest in either stamps or stamp collecting, but Block made both fascinating); AFTERTHOUGHTS 2.0, the updated collection of afterwards and introductions to various editions of his books (a biography in books, if you will; also fascinating); and HUNTING BUFFALO WITH LOST NICKELS, a collection of miscellaneous articles including ones about his quest to visit every town named Buffalo in North America, along with an explanation of why he is known to be a collector of subway cars; again fascinating). I also read the first Roger West mystery by John Creasey, INSPECTOR WEST TAKES CHARGE. And I read the revised edition large 1930's British anthology THE GREAT BOOK OF THRILLERS, edited by H. Douglas Thomson; this one eliminated six of the original 50 stories and inserted four others. On deck I have the latest novel from Christopher Golden and (gawd help up!) the second adventure of Lamont Cranston by James Patterson and Brian Sitts, as misguided as it might be; I also have a 200-page graphic novel of Stoker's DRACULA on hand.

Enjoy your California week, Patti! Stay safe.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Wow, Jerry, that was a really awful couple of stories. So sorry you all had to go through that.

I did read and enjoy all those Lawrence Block non-fiction books you mentioned.

Anonymous said...

The women I am with are deep
Into The Paris Murders. I discovered PBS began with Season 4 which is why some things don’t make sense. Saw The Perfect Days ( Japanese film) and several music events. Cool
but mostly dry. Walking about 4 miles a day.

Anonymous said...

Still expecting a book from Jerry about his life with animal. Do any of you start conversations with strangers on the street. My friends think me most unfriendly not to. I think east coasters do not do this.

Gerard Saylor said...

Spent the weekend being ticked off that one of Boy #2's college applications was declined. He has very high academic and musical qualifications and I was a bit flabbergasted. Keeping in mind that the place in question has a 7.5% acceptance rate in a popular major. Most of the places he applied to are 10% or less acceptance rate. We'll see how it goes.

Continue listening to THE CROW GIRL by Erik Axl Sund. 20 hours and 47 minutes down, 8 hours and 7 minutes to go. Reading ebook of THE RAGE by Gene Kerrigan; an Irish crime novel. Still reading A THIN RED LINE. I don't like holding the old library hardcover that is kinda dingy, has a loose binding, and a mylar cover that feels about to fall off.

Took the dog on a 5-mile walk yesterday. She slept well.

Jerry House said...

Jeff, Michael's death still has a great saddening on us. Luckily, memories of the man he was continues to influence our lives to this day.

Patti, I'm pretty shy and introverted but I often start conversations with strangers. It's a risky business in this day of MAGA fanaticism, but I've always found it worthwhile. People can be pretty darned interesting and it's rewarding to learn something about them.

Gerard, when I start my university, I'll accept Boy #2 in a heartbeat. No fool me.

Todd Mason said...

That is a heavy freight of bad fortune for extended circles of family and friends, Jerry. Hope those things that can have better endings do so...

I failed to provide a link to JOURNEYMAN, which I mentioned last week, a 13-episode time-travel fantasy series...which I still like about as much as I did upon broadcast in 2007.

And Moon Bloodgood's immediately previous time-paradox series DAY BREAK:

And the contemporary charming series THE MIDDLEMAN:

Gerard Saylor said...

I bought the complete series DVD of THE MIDDLEMAN a few years ago for my library. 42 checkouts since 2009. Should pull from collection because it has been gathering dust for several years.

A fellow City employee's husband had a sudden and fatal heart attack a few years ago during family vacation. Collapsed and died in front of his family. Horrible experience for everyone.

Jerry, I appreciate your offer on behalf of Boy #2. My wife wants him closer to home just to make home visits simpler and cheaper.

TracyK said...

Nothing much going on here. We had some light rain Friday and Saturday.

We watched THE THIRD MAN last week. It had been over 20 years since we watched that and it seemed all new to me. Very good viewing. We have watched episodes 7 and 8 of DEATH AND OTHER DETAILS and are slowly working our way through the last few episodes of MURDER AT THE END OF THE WORLD. Otherwise, just our normal shows. We are closing in on the last episodes of STAR TREK: VOYAGER and I will be sad to see it go. Two shows we will be trying soon are SHERWOOD and RED QUEEN.

I did finish a book last night ... THE SILVER SWAN by Benjamin Black (pseud. of John Banville). Not a lot of sleuthing going on or it is not shared with the reader. Flashbacks about the victims life. Unusual but I liked it.

Before that I was reading THE QUIET AMERICAN by Graham Greene. The first part had me confused but when I got used to it I liked it a lot and it is very well written. I need to read more by Greene. I would like to see the movie with Michael Caine again, it has been since 2004 that we watched it. But I don't think we can get it for free.

Glen finished CAFE EUROPA REVISITED by Slavenka Drakulić and liked it. Now he is reading THE HONJIN MURDERS, first published in 1946 by Seishi Yokomizo. He is having trouble with keeping the characters straight. I will be reading this sometime soon also, although I am sure I will have the same problem.

TracyK said...

Jerry, I wish I could go with you to that large used bookstore with 8000 square feet of books in South Carolina... except that I am not buying any books until September. I am eager to hear about your results from that trip.

I also want to take up crocheting. Actually I would be returning to crocheting. I learned back in my early 20's but have not crocheted for at least ten years. I have lots of yarn here and there and I just want to do simple things like scarves.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

Sandi used to crochet like crazy. Among other things, it kept her sane while doing chemo.

Pretty much the same old thing around here. We had an unexpected and unpredicted thunderstorm yesterday afternoon. Went out on my porch and realized that the deal was doing the warm rain thing. Not the full on summer bathtub experience, but it was a warm rain and cranked up the humidity. Guess we really are done with winter here.

Going to be a guest on Lesa Holstine's blog Sunday where I answer some of her questions about my blog, Bouchercon Dallas, Noir at the Bar Dallas, etc. Having blown past the 3.2 million page views deal awhile back, I guess keeping it going, like Sandi wanted, is working out though it is way harder these days.

Take care of yourselves.

KRT in Big D