Saturday, September 23, 2017

Okay, I'll Level--

     I have not been well this past week.  Had a flu shot last Friday (and they usually zap me for a couple of days), had some nasty dental work Monday, I've been fretted over my Mom and related issues since getting crosswise with my big sister a couple of weeks ago* and maybe it's just the combination of all that.  Maybe I'm feeling old.  Next Spring, I'll turn 60 and I'm not ready for it.  (Maybe I'll start over at 50 instead.)

     But I haven't been 100% and neither has the blog.  Sleeping most of the time, not eating much, getting noting done.  I'm not happy with this.

     Time for more vitamins and coffee.  Might not be a long-term fix but sometimes you need to use a cane for awhile before you start walking without one again.
* Something the two of us are very good at.  It's easy for each of us to blame the other but I suspect it's the combination.  We react like vinegar and baking soda, two harmlessly inert household substances that foam and fume when combined.  Alas, we don't neutralize one another in the process but remain as base and acid as before.

Friday, September 22, 2017


     Sausage and eggs and this and that....
     It was good!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

And Then My Phone Rang

     It's work.  They broke something kind of important, by doing something that shouldn't break it.  And now I'm troubleshooting over the phone.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Multicultural Square Eggs

     Because if pastrami and Swiss cheese on rye is good for lunch, why not sneak it into breakfast?  I was making a "gashouse" or "square" egg for breakfast, which is an egg fried in a hole punched in a lightly toasted slice of bread.

     Rye bread, as it happened, which reminded me that I still had sandwich makings in the fridge.  So when I flipped the egg-and-bread over and laid a slice of Swiss cheese on it, I already had a thin slice of pastrami cooking next to it (the pre-packaged stuff is too moist anyway!),  As soon as it was warm, the pastrami went on top, I set another slice of it warming, and flipped the whole stack over for a bit to make sure the cheese was melted.  Add the second slice of pastrami to serve and there you go -- adjust times and quantities as desired; I break the egg yolk and cook 'em firm but other people like runny yolks with this.

     It was delicious.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Oh, Darn It

     The eggs have (as the carton says) expired -- as of 25 August.  I'm certain we bought them after that, which is a mistake on the part of the store.

     Refrigerated eggs are essentially "fresh" two to three weeks after the "sell-by" or "expiration" date marked on them and should be edible for another couple of weeks after that, though you might not be able to make nice fluffy meringue with them.  But we're on the edge where occasional surprises happen and I'm just not up to rolling those dice this morning, especially atop corned beef hash.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Early, Early

     It's 6:30 a.m. and I'm the only mammal awake in the house.  Tam is asleep in front of a droning television; her cat Rannie is at the foot of the futon, unable to stay awake.  Huck, my cat, is napping, half hidden on the next-from-the top platform of carpet-covered "tree" that is all his, sprawled out like an apex predator who doesn't have a care in the world.  (Accurate enough; he's the biggest tiger in this jungle by a wide margin, hunter of the wild long-legged centipede, assorted tiny spiders and any flying creature that blunders into his domain.)  Even the television seems to have foregone its normal shout in favor of a calm retelling of recent events.*

     Breakfast is done and I'm here at the computer with no demands on my attention other than the keyboard and screen, a precious moment of quiet before the hubbub of the day.
* I suppose the demise of the yelling, hard-sell automotive huckster in the wake of the bankruptcies and dealership implosion nearly a decade ago is not a positive economic sign, but I am still having a hard time missing them.  On the other hand, my paycheck is dependent on those TV ads and they are a lot different to what they were a dozen years ago.  Entertaining people over the air free for nothing except hearing a few ads used to seem recession-proof -- it was even, almost, Great Depression-proof! -- but the entertainment's got a lot of competition these days and the ads, at their peak, were more and more of an assault on ear and eyes that could, eventually, turn their attention elsewhere.  Your radio and television were a nice big home for a lot of us; your cellphone is suddenly more crowded and the accommodations aren't all that deluxe, either.  Yes, Miss Desmond, "'s the pictures that got small!"  Literally.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

So, There May Be A New Orson Welles Film In The Pipeline

     On the other hand, The Other Side Of The Wind has been in the pipeline so long, it may have curdled.  Highly experimental, it may be an artifact of its time (early to mid 1970s).  Or it could be timeless.  Either way, Indiegogo and Netflix are finishing what Showtime could not -- and there's a lesson in the changing  nature of mass media right there.  Even the editing technology is nothing Welles would have known, though I'd like to think the man who lined up multiple Movieolas* so he could move from cut to cut while skilled minions stuck the cut film together in his wake might have enjoyed an all-electronic 4K editor that sticks "footage" together as rapidly as you can mark the in and out points (and unsticks them just as fast if you change your mind).

     They're starting the sticking-together process now, an amazing development to anyone who has followed even a little of the occasionally bitter feud between Oja Kodar and Beatrice Welles over which of them owns the rights to what parts of the late actor-director's work.
* Or so I read.  The editing-room footage in F For Fake shows flatbed editors instead, which spool faster and are gentler to the film. All I ever ran for film editors were tiny Super 8 versions, though I have stuck 16mm film back together in splicers, themselves streamlined artifacts unchanged since before WW II and now undoubtedly rusting away in scrap heaps.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Thursday, September 14, 2017


     I had raw vegetables (with hummus and alleged pita bread.  Alleged hummus, too) from the vending machine at work for lunch the other day.  They were a bit long in the tooth and it has put me way off my feed.  Dinner last night was Not Much and breakfast this morning is not sitting as well as I would like.  It's too darned distracting.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Orville

     Fox, inept as ever when it comes to SF, has been pushing The Orville as some kind of boffo-laughs sci-fi comedy.  It isn't.

     It is, however, pretty good for what it is: a kind of cousin to the original Star Trek with a thin "fourth wall:" The Orville is self-aware SF adventure with some humor.  The writers, director and actors know when they're wading through familiar tropes, and they know you know -- and they're not averse to throwing the audience a quick wink over it.

     Despite that, the world-building holds up far better than you might expect, helped along by slightly rumpled uniforms and a future universe that isn't quite as slick as it aspires to be.  If the writers can continue to walk the tightrope -- especially in dialog -- between stereotype and satire, between too real and too cute, it's going to be great fun.  And if they fall short, it will still be fun.

     Rolling-on-the-floor, bigtime laugh riot?  Nope.  This show is too fond of its source material to go for the easy laugh, at least in the pilot.  Instead, it delivered a fun drama -- verging on melodrama -- with a couple of narrative threads and clever solutions to familiar problems. 

     Watch it while you can.  There are 13 episodes ready to roll and from there....  I have no faith in Fox not meddling with or cancelling the series and that's too bad; it deserves a good run.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017