5-9-2018 Foodies Day

Spring has sprung for sure! The forsythia and quince are blooming; there are narcissus, and carpets violets and the first of the bleeding hearts. The hyacinth and daffodils seem to have passed, but I can see the buds coming on the lilac, and the trees are leafing out. The knotweed has started growing again. Oh well.  Spring took it’s sweet time, but it is here! Now I have to get back on my feet so I can plant my mini-garden. Sadly, the back garden is being taken over by sumac, and I won’t be able to have a vegetable garden again until I can put in a good functional fence, but considering that I haven’t got the energy for it anyway, I suppose I’ll stick to the mini garden. There is just something so hopeful about looking at seeds and thinking about what they could become!

I’ve got John working on cleaning them up from the winter mess (I’m afraid that some of the delivered firewood went right on the raised beds, so I’ll have to fluff them up again!) While at it I hope to get some compost dug into them.

This week I hung my first wash of the year on the line. (I meant to get a picture, but really, do you want to see my laundry?) That felt great though. Kat took down her insulated curtains and I can leave the doors to the west wing open so the morning light comes down the hallway which is something I really love!

This week has mostly been spent celebrating Kat’s birthday. On Saturday the girls met Joannie and Raye and went to a tea room for tea. They dressed up, Kat wore her tiara. It looks like they had traditional finger sandwiches, scones, tea cakes, and tea. At the end Willow read their tea leaves. Kat’s had a cat face. I wasn’t there so I don’t know too much more about it. I do know they went to a nearby playground to play afterwards, then hung out and ate more until evening, making a full day of it.
Steve came up on Sunday, hanging with me, because the girls were mostly taking as a day of rest. Before he got here, I did run Kat down to Michael’s where they were having a frame sale and we got her frames for the pictures they’d gotten of her and Peter Davison and Matthew Waterhouse at the con. Steve has been organizing and discovered he had two sets of the DVDs of the Outer Limits and brought us one. The first show had David McCallum and the second had Martin Landau, the third had Edward Mulhair. I’m enjoying seeing the old familiar faces from my youth. I am rather appalled at how people automatically assumed that anyone who looked different was a “monster”. That seems so wrong after all these decades of watching actors in prosthetics playing aliens we like.
Kat was having a hard time picking what we should eat for her birthday dinner, so instead we went to see the new Avengers Infinity movie, meeting Willow at Friendlies after her work. Kat’s Sunday had rainbow sprinkles- no detectable flavor, and cubes of cake on top. I asked her “how does cake go with ice cream?” Then thought about it. Willow had raspberry with Jimmies. We still had popcorn at the theatre, although I Had less than usual- for some reason a few kernels tasted like burnt plastic to me, so I stopped. I still wonder where that came from.
Without giving spoilers I can say that they included characters from about 8 other movies: Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Black Panther, Spiderman, Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange, Nick Fury, and of course other Avengers like The Black Widow, Vision, and others. I was amused when Peter Dinklage turned up as a Dwarf- two or three times as big as Thor, that must have been fun for him, even if it was done by CGI. Willow explained to me why we don’t see cross overs from the X-men or hear the word mutants, apparently that franchise lies with a different studio, so Wanda and Pietro aren’t allowed to be called mutants in the MCU. Bizarre! The movie took three hours, probably because it was a compilation of dozens of inter-related sub-plots, what each of these people was doing in different spots all over the galaxy. And even at three hours, it was one of those ‘half-of-the-story’ movies, where they leave you in the middle and you have to wait until next year to find out what happens next! Willow hates those even worse than I do, and may have heard rumors about it (although many people are being very careful about spoilers these days.) and was hesitant to go. I certainly am not happy about having to wait a year to find out. They should have a better climax and conclusion, and then go on with what happened after in the next movie. I looked it up on line when we got home, and they haven’t even decided on the NAME of the sequel yet! It’s “untitled Avengers movie” (in post production). Given that they’ve listed 15 stars on the Internet movie Database for that movie I expect that it’s pretty much going to be the “second-half”, but as Willow put it, she was so cross at the non-conclusion she didn’t have any leftover emotion to be sad about the people they killed off. Personally, I expect a great big reset, the way they had after Marvel’s Secret Wars or DC’s Crisis on Infinite Earths (in the comics) Like it’s supposed to be OK to kill a character off if another version exists in another dimension. I suppose that works for Dr. Who. By and large I enjoyed it, but I enjoyed all the marvel cinematic universe movies. I read the comics (heck, I subscribed to them back when Marvel offered that!). I’ve always liked the characters and they mostly stay true to them, while I think that because of the 3-D option there may have been more space scenes and probably more action stuff than I could keep track of- the battle scenes were like a three ring circus, or maybe five! On the other hand, I agree that if you’re going to kill off a beloved character, it is supposed to be gut wrenching, knowing that there’s going to be a “reset” (after all, there are movies with those characters in them in post-production) cheapens the plot device. I also had a problem with Thanos’ theory that if you wipe out half the people in a population, it’ll be better off. It doesn’t work like that. This has happened with plagues and wars throughout history, and while it does change things, and some people are better off, others, and not just the ones who died, but the ones who had to clean up the mess of having half the workers, have the knowledge, etc. gone are also worse off, it’s not a panacea. Just because he’s a super villain shouldn’t make him stupid, and I doubt our history is different than it would be in other systems. It reminds me of my pet peeve about people giving mortality figures after a disaster. Not only do they leave out the wounded, they also leave out the people whose lives are ruined by having lost the people in their families and towns who died. Everything is connected, and life isn’t simple! But enough of the movie.
I liked it. Go see it, …or wait until next year if you want to see it all at once. It really does stop in the middle.
Since her big gift this year was the trip to Regencon, we only got her little gifts this year- the frames for her pictures, and I found a seal of Rassilon ring, and a Victorian lace necklace. Willow found a Capaldi action figure to complete her Dr. Who set (if they’re going to keep adding new ones!), and a decal so we can tell the difference between our insulated cups. This is especially important as the weather is getting warm. There was also a sparkly necklace they found while out Saturday at the mall, and some Tardis cufflinks we found at Birka, and a dressmakers flexible curve.  It’s enough.
Having not gotten around to it on Monday, Tuesday I made Kat a lovely lemon cake, which had some lemon syrup poured over it while warm, but no frosting. Its quite lovely. Willow  got her the traditional birthday balloon (two actually). I like a floating balloon- especially now that they last so long. I feel that as long as the balloon is up, you’ve still got a bit of your birthday celebrating going on. Mine (from February 8), is still floating, and so is John’s (from February 21). Kat lost track of one of her shoes and spent much of Sunday doing an unscheduled room cleaning, during which she found her still-partially-inflated (if no longer floating) balloon from last year!
Since she was sick, and then we had all these birthday breaks, she’s falling a bit behind on her current commission. It’s a really lacy black blouse with detachable sleeves, so it can be either cap sleeves or long sleeves. I think her customer is going to be very happy with it.
We’re all a bit nervous as Peripigelium has not been seen for three days now. It could be that she got in trouble with the local fauna, or traffic, or she might just be chasing the wildlife herself. Zoloft caught and was playing with a mouse the other night- little drops of blood all over the floor. When she headed for the living room we threw it outside. (“Not on the rug!”)
The air conditioning in the car is shot. We first noticed it when I was driving Mark down to the clinic, Thursday (one of the first warm days). Bless the man, he told me to find out how much it was- I think he’s offering to pay for it! He also had me order the filet mignon when we stopped to eat on the way home. Last week we’d been talking about steaks and I’d told him that I’d had one once and found them creepily soft, and somewhat flavorless. He suggested that since that wasn’t his experience, I should try it again. I am willing to admit that my mind is changed, it was a lovely piece of meat. They still are softer and the flavor isn’t as strong as the sirloin and chuck I’m used to, but it was still lovely. Although I’m still not liable to buy it for myself. He’s been reading some Nero Wolf Mysteries, and is picking some to loan me.
I finished Monsters of Men, it was as good as suspected. and the read three short stories from that world- Snowscape, the Wide,Wide Sea, and The New World that I found on kindle. Sadly when I triedlooking for Buried too Deep, again, I have misplaced it. I think it is probably under the featherbeds I pushed off the bed and haven’t yet put away. I have gotten out my summer skirts, and am searching for short sleeved blouses that are still decent. I am very hard on my clothes. SO I re-read the Germanicus Mosaic, the first in the Libertas series. I need something light between bouts of non-fiction. I’ve finished Summers, The Vampire in Lore and Legend (as it was called when Dover Occult reissued it. Originally it was Vampires in Europe). I hate it when they do that! I now have both. One of the kindle editions is great, because they provide links to the many footnotes, which makes it easier to check. On the other hand, whatever translation program they use has a huge problem with Greek characters: β η θ π ψ… etc. I thin I Mentioned that as an old style scholar, Summers figures no one needs anything in Latin, Greek, German or French translated, and while I get by with the French and German, and can figure out SOME Of the Latin after all these years, I am still such a beginner with Greek- still struggling with the alphabet.  I’m mostly done with The Vampire His Kith and Kin and want to review some of the books in my library, then try to get the handout done before the end of the month. (I really need to send the painting off to Lynn too. And get on with the next one.) I finished Tracking the man-beasts, and Medusa’s Gaze and Vampires bite, took some notes and sent them back to the library. A lot of the modern ones are simply trying to dress up the assumption that our ancestors were stupid and find psychological excuses for why they’d believe in this stuff. I don’t know that thats any less palatable than Summers and some of the earlier writers assumptions that this is clearly the work of the devil. The more I read, the more I am convinced that people reframe everything they see through the lens of what they believe, and that’s why it’s so hard to change anyone’s mind about anything. (ie. the poor people Trump is screwing and who still love him and support him.)
Frankly, the volcanoes in Hawaii are less depressing.
I’ve been flipping (semi-) randomly through A History of Food and Food History with great enjoyment, but I didn’t get through the book on biographies of Scientists or the Big Idea Science Book. There’s always something new to learn.
I read somewhere this week that polymaths- people who do more than one thing, are more successful than specialists. I have always felt that I make the best connections when I am exploring many different areas at “the same time”. At the same time I have a new thought. Perhaps it’s the way we think about what we do. I find it difficult to give up many of the things I do because I identify with them strongly. I am an artist. I am a healer. I am a soothsayer. I am a mother. I could no more give up being an artist than I could give up being a mother- its how I work. It’s what I am. It’s not just something I do. If you think of what you do as simply an option, some skill you’ve learned because it puts a roof over your head and food on the table, then sure, you could learn something else and do that instead. But if its who you are, then you can’t really stop being that because it would be more convenient. I don’t know why I have been blessed with so many talents, but I don’t feel able to give any of them up. I can learn new techniques (boy, I’d really like to learn more art techniques!), but I can’t stop being what I am, so I assume other people can’t stop being what they are- although I think too many people have never figured out what they are, and simply accept what they do without thinking about it. This may be what they used to call vocation.
I did see some really fun movies this week- aside from the Avengers Infinity. I got an old Burt Lancaster medieval flick from the 40s- The Flame and the Arrow. Did you know that he started as an acrobat and did his own stunts? Go back and watch the Crimson Pirate or one of those. What fun! Those two also include his partner from their act, who had such a strong Brooklyn accent that they made his characters mute in films where it would throw off the story. Amazing moves! The little guy balances a ten foot pole on his forehead and Lancaster climbs it and does the same kind of moves the Chinese acrobats do. Wow.
Last week someone mentioned on facebook that they’d come out with a sixth Tremors movie: Tremors 6 A Cold Day in Hell. It’s streaming on Netflix, so I watched it, then the fifth one where they went to Africa (“This is bigger than the North American variety.” “This is Africa, mate, everything’s bigger.”) Tremors movies are not great literature in any sense of the word, but they are marvelously fun, and have more than the usual density of great lines:
“Broke into the wrong goddamn rec room, didn’t ya you bastard!”
“A few household chemicals in the proper proportions.”
“I feel I was denied critical need-to-know information.”
Ælfwine always identified with Burt, and I can still see it. Gosh I miss him.
I need to go to bed- Kat and I (finally well!) are going to try to give blood tomorrow!
Tchipakkan
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it. W. C. FIELDS
Upcoming holidays:
þ 10 Shrimp Day, Trust your Intuition Day, Clean up Your Room Day
F 11 Eat What You Want Day, Twilight Zone Day , Fintastic Friday
S 12 Nutty Fudge Day, Limerick Day, Fair Trade Day, Belly Dance Day , CFS/FM Day
⨀ 13 Apple Pie Day, Hummus Day, Cocktail Day, Fruit Cocktail Day, Mothers Day
M 14 Buttermilk Biscuit Day, Dance Like a Chicken Day
T 15 Chocolate Chip Day, Dinosaur Day, Day of Families , Straw Hat Day
W 16 Coquilles St. Jacques Day, Mimosa Day, Sea Monkey Day, Juice Slush Day