Thursday, December 23, 2004

Please, bear with me....

A few years ago, I joined eDiets.

The combination of a sedentary job, stress, several back injuries and menopause had edged my weight up into a zone where I was no longer comfortable. So, while I was seeing a chiropractor about my back, I decided that it was time to get myself back down to a healthy weight.

I'm not going to go into details, because there is absolutely nothing as boring as reading about someone's diet. And that's the reason that I have never blogged about the subject. I never even discuss it with anyone, except for TonyP (my "training buddy", whose support has been a key factor in my success).

I'm writing about it now because I am 2.5 lbs away from my goal weight.

When I started with eDiets, I really didn't think that the goal that they had set for me was realistic.( It was a weight that I hadn't been at since I was in my twenties, for cryin' out loud!) Still, I gave the program my best shot. I was surprised at how quickly my body began to change. Then.... I grew frustrated at the way that things sort of leveled off for a while.

Recently, my weight has begun to go down again and I am starting to realise that my goal is just around the corner.

Only a few years ago, I thought it was impossible.

Thanks for listening.




Monday, December 20, 2004

One of Life's Unanswered Questions.....

....How does plumbing know when it's a holiday week?

It's uncanny.

Do yourself a favour and just go ahead and put Roto-Rooter on your speed-dial.

You'll thank yourself!


Thursday, December 02, 2004

JennySlash's Fave Holiday Viewing

Naturally, I love Charlie Brown, the Grinch and the entire Rankin/Bass holiday catalogue.

But here are my top ten picks for holiday viewing:

1. A Christmas Story - no explanation needed. ("Mother's little piggie!")

2. A Christmas Carol (1951),(B/W) - the one with Alastair Sim

3. Toys - with Robin Williams. No one liked the movie when it came out in 1992, but I love the daylights out of this movie. Plus, it is the source of one of the most beautiful songs of the season. Called "At The Closing Of The Year", it never fails to make me cry.

4. Scrooged - again, no explanation is needed.

5. Die Hard - probably the only Christmas movie you'll see with the line: "Yippee-kay-yay, M*****-F*****". (Although, maybe not.)

6. The Thin Man - Nick and Nora Charles drink their way through a murder mystery. (This is my absolute favourite holiday movie!)

7. The Nightmare Before Christmas - Yes, I know that they show this on tv around Hallowe'en, but it is definitely a Christmas movie.

8. Edward Scissorhands - Well, it's got Depp....got a problem with that?

9. National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation - for all of us who have labored hard to create the perfect family holiday.

10. Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas - a Jim Henson from the mid-70's, without a Kermit or Miss Piggy in sight. This is a great one for families with children but suitable for all ages.


So, now you know what to rent on Friday night!

(Aren't you glad you dropped by?)

Thursday, November 25, 2004

A Veggie-ful Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving brings out the cook in me.

For weeks, I have been going through every cookbook I have in the library, as well as back-issues of Vegetarian Times. Rich soups and sauces simmer on every page. Casseroles call to me. I can even imagine myself making savory loaves of seitan....from scratch. Maybe quinoa............

Funnily enough, lots of people think that that's how vegetarians eat all of the time. Er....we seldom eat like that even on holidays. But, every now and again, I do feel like doing something wonderfully extravagant for the holiday table. The thing is that few occasions showcase vegetarian cuisine quite like Thanksgiving.

My first Thanksgiving as a new bride was on our honeymoon. (No pressure there, right?) We were in the mountains, it was freezing and I made baked potatoes, broccoli and a pumpkin pie.

Since then, we have experimented with more complex menus. TonyP has whipped up wonderful and exotic casseroles with mushrooms and chestnuts. I've perfected my version of vegan pumpkin pie. We even have Tofurkey some years, although it's far from a necessity - it's just really so cool that there is such a thing!!!!

The menu this year? After all that looking at cookbooks, I chose baked potatoes and broccoli with a vegan pumpkin pie.

And Tofurkey, just for fun.






Monday, November 22, 2004

So, anyway....

I've been seeing previews of today's Oprah and, evidently, it's time for the annual Oprah's Favourite Things show.

Whoopie.

The previews show an audience full of hysterical women, squeeling with delight as Oprah unveils her fave picks of the season. (Remember pashmina?)

Which kind of got me to wondering just how enthusiastic such an audience would be if I unveiled some of my fave things:

Swiffers! (Yea!)

Static Guard! (Squee!)

Prewashed Salad Greens! (Aiee! Omigod! Omigod!)

Obviously, Oprah and I have different criteria.


Friday, November 05, 2004

Guess I Need A Plan C

I'd emigrate to Canada tomorrow.

But I just had to marry a man who hates cold weather!

Damn.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Oh, well

I've had better days.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Keeping Busy

I am trying very hard to avoid watching television today.

If I start, I know that I will be sucked into the vortex of speculation and punditry. So, before I fell asleep last night, I made a list of things that I could do today to burn up some of that excess energy and keep my mind occupied.

Here are some of the things I came up with:

Transcribe last year's NaNo novel
Empty and reorganise my half of the bathroom vanity
Make a pretty necklace out of sparkly beads
Pull weeds
Do hand laundry
Empty the dishwasher
Update my address book
Update the calendar on my PDA
Check for loose buttons on my Fall clothes and resew
Make a pretty bracelet out of sparkly beads
Do some jewelry repair
Lengthen too-short trousers
Shine my shoes
Play around with software I seldom use
Play Solitaire
Walk around the block
Water plants
Shine brassware
Do some ironing
Well, that's a sampling of the items on my list!
Feel free to borrow some of my ideas or share some of your own.
Now, go turn off your television.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Why I Won't Be Voting Tuesday

OK, perhaps that title is a little misleading.

You see, Saturday afternoon, TonyP and I decided to go downtown and vote early.

And, accustomed as I am to voting in church basements and school hallways, it was a real treat for me to find myself standing in line in such a lovely space as this!

That is a picture of the portrait gallery at Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, on the UNC campus.

And that statue is of President James K. Polk, a Carolina grad.

In case you didn't know.



Monday, October 25, 2004

A Short Tribute

If you've ever followed my links to the website the Episcopal Church and the Visual Arts, you might have run across an article or two by one of my former professors: John W. Dixon.

During my long Undergraduate career at UNC-Chapel Hill, I was fortunate to have several truly brilliant professors. I was fortunate too that ( during those years) it was possible to drop their courses just before finals.

Doctor Dixon was one of those.

Granted, he wasn't the easiest lecturer to comprehend. If you read some of his early papers, you'll see that a lot of his writing was mired in that antique academic style that we all know and loathe. But, if you slog through it, there's some wonderful stuff.

Fortunately, his style of writing loosened up, over the years. And, in some of his more recent articles, there is a vitality to his writing that gives the reader a much better impression of the agile mind behind it.

He retired from UNC in 1987. He and his wife established the Vivian and John Dixon Award for Graduate Study in Art and Religion at UNC.

John W. Dixon died on October 17th at the age of 85.





Friday, October 22, 2004

Just wondering...

Like a lot of couples,TonyP and I work at home. So, whenever there's a DIY segment or a magazine article on home office solutions, I have a look-see.

Invariably, these two terms come up: "spare room" and "spare closet".

Pray, what do these terms mean?



Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Like You Didn't Already Know....

Just a reminder that November is National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo).

I will be trying to get my 2003 NaNo novel transcribed and (at least, partially!) edited this year.

So, you won't be seeing daily word counts from me on this blog.

But, to all of you who are revving up for November, why are you reading this instead of working on your outline? Hmmm?

The King of Monsters

If you have plans to be in Lawrence, Kansas at the end of this month, chances are that you will be attending the International Godzilla Conference.

If you are there, then you will be one of the fortunate few who will be able to catch a screening of the original Gojira, which has been shown in a limited number of cities throughout the Summer, in celebration of the 50th birthday of The King of Monsters.

If you don't know what the fuss is about, it's probably because you didn't realize that the 1956 "Raymond Burr" Godzilla was an americanized and much edited version . The original Japanese movie has seldom been seen in the U.S. and the DVD is rather tough to find, as well.

If you are inclined to attend the conference, note that all events are free. Because, as the organizers state, that's how Godzilla would want it.


Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Story Thus Far....

If you are one of the fans of Farscape that felt cheated by it's premature demise, you have probably been anxiously awaiting the mini-series on Sci-Fi that will finally bring closure to the series.

For those of you that only caught the show every now-and-again and couldn't make heads or tails out of it, or for the vast numbers of you that never saw the show in the first place, there are a variety of resources to bring you up to speed, before the mini-series/finale begins on Sunday at nine.

On Farscape World and Escape to Farscape, you will find very fine episode guides that will fill in the gaps: Why is Scorpius wearing a Hawaiian shirt? Who's the annoying grey chick? Why hasn't someone chucked Sparky out an airlock? What the frell is going on, anyway????

For just the main points, go to the Primer on the Farscape World site. It's really VERY helpful!

Sunday at nine.

Monday, October 11, 2004

The Laura Barnes

I was doing a little sketching at the Outer Banks on Sunday.
We were down at Coquina Beach and I was sketching some of the shattered remains of the wreck of the Laura Barnes. She was a 120' schooner that ran aground during a nor'easter in 1921.
For a long time, she was exhibited behind ropes but the hurricanes of recent years have dashed the wreck to pieces and what remains might be easily mistaken for shattered railroad ties or pieces of an old pier resting in the dunes.
So, when I was sketching the wreck, I was not surprised to see a trio of boys (about ages 10-13) climbing around the wood beams without a great deal of care or interest. They seemed much more interested in what I was doing. So, they trotted over for a peek at my sketchbook.
"Are you an artist?"
"No." I lied. "Not really. I'm just sketching the shipwreck."
Their eyes got big as dinner plates. "That's a shipwreck !?" "Wow!" "Really?"
I nodded. "Yes, her name was the Laura Barnes and she ran aground in the 1920s. The wreck used to be in a lot better shape but, in recent years, the hurricanes have scattered the wreckage all over the dunes."
"What was it's name?" one boy asked, not taking his eyes off the blackened timbers.
"Her name was the Laura Barnes, " I answered.
"Wow!" "Thanks!!"
The trio turned and ran back down the beach. As they did so, I heard one of them call out:
"Mom! Hey, Mom! We just learned some history!!!!"
A moment or two later, TonyP came from around the dune, where he had been photographing the wreck. "What did you tell them when they asked if you were an artist?"
"I told them no. That I was just sketching the wreck."
"Why ?"
I looked over my shoulder at the three boys. "Because I figured that they looked like the kind of kids that would get more out of learning about the shipwreck."
***
The below entry is from The Insiders' Guide to the Outer Banks:
The Laura A. BarnesCoquina Beach, NC 12, Bodie Island
One of the last coastal schooners built in America, the Laura A. Barnes was completed in Camden, Maine, in 1918. This 120-foot ship was under sail on the Atlantic during a trip from New York to South Carolina when a nor'easter drove it onto the Outer Banks in 1921. The Laura A. Barnes ran aground just north of where it now rests at Coquina Beach. The entire crew survived. In 1973 the National Park Service moved the shipwreck to its present location, where visitors view the remains of the ship behind a roped-off area that includes placards with information about the Laura A. Barnes and the history of lifesaving.

Friday, October 08, 2004

"Night of the Cheese-Eating Zombies"

The question on my mind tonight is this:

Would anyone attend gallery or museum show openings if food were not served?

Tonight, the guests headed straight for the buffet, then headed for the chairs lining the ballroom and SAT DOWN for the rest of the reception!!!!

The only way to mingle with that lot would be to carry a tray of canapes!

Thursday, October 07, 2004

A Birthday Shout Out To....

TonyPlutonium!!!!!

(who is mumbledy-mumble years old today and doesn't look a day over mumbledy.)

Love and Kisses

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Upcoming Art Show

OK, guys...

THIS is what I've been up to!

These acrylic florals are from a series that I've been working on over the Summer.

The three paintings will be on view at the Carolina Club, as part of the Annual Paint by Members Show. The exhibit opens on 7 October and runs through the end of the month. This show is open to the public and artwork is available for purchase.

While you're there, be sure to check out TonyP's photos! (Just click on his "shows" button, to see the photos he will have in the show.)


Thursday, September 23, 2004

It's Quite An Unusual Thing

A few years ago, one of the TV stations in our area decided to become a shop-at-home channel. You know the kind of thing I mean....They have the really-ugly-jewelry show, the electonics-you-don't-really-need show, the fitness-equipment-you'll-never-use show and the why-the-hell-did-I-buy-all-of-these-old-coins show.

And, from 9 til 12 every morning, they run New Zoo Revue.

I assume that everybody reading this post is familiar with New Zoo Revue. Maybe you weren't young enough to be their target audience. Maybe you were stoned and sitting in front of the TV with your friends. Maybe, like myself, you were a teenager who grew to appreciate the kitschy-ness of the show while stuck at home over vacation.

If you click on the link above, you will find out more than you ever really ever wanted to know about NZR. You will also learn interesting tidbits about the creator of the show (a woman who claims, among other things, to have invented culottes....).

So, if dancing hippos are your thing, if you always liked go-go boots and wondered how Emmy Jo got her hair to look like that, or if Doug's mustache still freaks you out, check out the website and join me in a little sing-along:

It's quite an unusual thing!
The animals talk and sing!
With Doug and Emmy Jo
Every day's a different show!
It's the New Zoo Revue
Coming
Right at You!


Saturday, September 18, 2004

I'm In!

Got the letter today!!

UNCG has accepted me....

I'm a grad student.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

End of Season Summary

I haven't been writing much lately because I have actually been getting some work done!

Much to my surprise, I have several paintings that look like they will be ready for the Paint by Members Show at the Carolina Club. I have a little tweaking to do, but I am quite satisfied with the work that I've gotten done this Summer.

Considering the humidity and the way that has affected the acrylics that I use, that is nothing short of amazing. Ditto, the general lack of sunlight. Painting by the glare of full-spectrum bulbs is better than painting in the dark, of course. But it is hard to judge colour when you can't freakin' see it.

I have also been doing a few watercolours, some photography, a teeny bit of sewing, a little altered book stuff, playing with my ongoing scrapbook project and an outrageous amount of crocheting.

What I haven't done is write. I got almost nothing done on my novel, I'm way behind on my blogging and haven't written either a poem or a fanfic piece all Summer.

For those of you who have been following the ongoing saga of my Grad School App, there is still no word. Trust me, I will post it here when I hear anything. Yea or Nay. At this point, I don't care which. I just want an decision.

I've been checking the status of my app online with the same frequency that some of my writer buddies check their rankings on Amazon.com.



Friday, September 03, 2004

I Kid You Not

LG is running adds for the world's first fridge/television hybrid.

Yes, folks. You can now combine two of your fave activities into one space.

Ya gotta wonder.

It's Almost Upon Us!

Of course, I'm talking about Talk Like A Pirate Day!!

So, brush up on your best Captain Barbosa imitation. (Or Captain Jack Sparrow, if you prefer.)

It's just around the corner!!




Thursday, September 02, 2004

My Mother Wore Combat Boots

My Mom called me from her cell phone at about 11:15, this morning.

"I'm over at the Democratic Headquarters. They don't have any of the 'Veteran for Kerry' buttons or signs. Could you order me some off the internet?"

Mom is a veteran.

She was in the Marines during the Korean War. She gave me a cute stuffed bear a few years ago that has a tee-shirt proclaiming "My Mother Wore Combat Boots".

I don't know if she ever wore combat boots but I do recall a group photo taken during Basic at Parris Island. Each woman was perfectly permed and wearing red lipstick. They wore stockings and smart-looking wool uniforms with peplums. Beneath it all, of course, they wore the requisite foundation garments, including girdles. And sensible heels.

On Parris Island.

Now, those were some tough women!









Thursday, August 26, 2004

More About Crochet

If the cost of fabulously neo-retro 60s/70s-ish crochet duds at the boutiques and malls put funky fringe-y fashions beyond your reach, here's a site,that I stumbled across, that has archived oodles and oodles of those projects from yesteryear - including that shawl that my mother made for me to take to college!

If nothing else, it's worth a look just to laugh at the hairstyles!

But I think you would be much better off pulling that bag of unused Red Heart yarn out of the back of your closet and giving one of these retro-beauties a go.

Groovy

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Monday, August 23, 2004

Starlite, Star Bright

The Starlite Drive-in caught fire on Sunday.


There are only a handful of drive-ins left in the state and the Starlite was the only one in the Triangle.


I saw Dragon:The Bruce Lee Story there. And the Flintstones. That's also where I saw Buffy, the Vampire Slayer (the movie).


By the time I had discovered the Starlite. the clip-on speakers had all gone, of course. The audio was broadcast via radio signal to your car radio.


The playground beneath the screen had remained, however. The equipment was rusty and the grass thigh-high. But it took little imagination to see the children that had played there over the decades.


Most of the people that I saw at the drive-in came in pick-ups. They'd back into their parking space and watch from the truck bed, with their kids. The way their parents had watched movies with them, years ago.


When I was little, I would watch drive-in movies from the backseat of the family wagon. Disney nature movies were a favourite, as were anything that had to do with horses. We saw Westerns, of course. And, since my father was a stockcar buff, we saw Thunder Road, Thunder in Carolina and any of a number of moonshine/racing movies.


Over the years, I have mourned the loss of each drive-in that I knew in Guilford County and each decrepit one that I have passed that had been turned into a flea market or self-storage.


Of course, the Starlite had turned into a flea market, as well. It also sold guns, for that matter. But it still showed movies. First-run movies, at that. On weekend nights, the neon sign would glow and I could sit outside on a muggy Summer night and remember why it was that I first fell in love with the movies.


The fire is still under investigation but, already, the owner is saying that the screen will be rebuilt.


I certainly hope so. Surrounded, as we all are, by multiplexes and art houses, I can't help but think that there is still room for a place where you can watch movies by star light.


I Pray ,When Risen From The Dead....

Some years ago, I ran across a photo of a Shaker sampler with the following verse:

I pray, when risen from the dead
I may in Glory stand
A crown perhaps upon my head
But a needle in my hand
I understand the sentiment. I am seldom as content as when I am doing some kind of needlework.
Right now, it's crocheting.
I recently scored a treasure trove of crochet patterns. These patterns, like the crochet hooks themselves, have been passed from woman to woman in my family for ages. (Some have come to me after a cousin who left this world while stenciling her walls. We are hardcore craftswomen in my family.)
Friday night , I went over to JoAnn's Fabric and Crap and dug through their meager yarn selection til I found a few skeins that looked as though they might be fun to experiment with. I decided that I would make a revised version of a shawl that my mother made for me when I started college.
The project has gone quickly. Maybe too quickly, as I am now adding the fringe to the shawl and have already begun scouting around for the next project.
A fringe-y poncho, perhaps.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Another Reason That It Sucks To Be An Artist

It is emotionally exhausting to keep putting my work out there in the hopes that something will pan out.

Professionally speaking, I've been feeling kind of discouraged, lately. The goals that I set for this year have not yielded much fruit, so I am trying to set some new goals.

Each attempt takes total commitment. Like romance. Like dating. You invest all of your heart, soul, body and energy. You put your future on the line.

You put your self on the line.

Afterwards, when the phone doesn't ring, it's very, very bad.

Just like dating.

You spend a lot of time in self-doubt: Did I try too hard? Not hard enough?

Why don't they want me?

I'm supposed to be in a group show this Fall. With any luck, I'll have the paintings ready on time.

Then, on the night of the opening, I'll show up in my best cocktail wear and stand around for an hour and a half with a glass of white wine warming in my hand.

I'll hover around my paintings, seeking approval. For them. For myself.

Like I said...it's a lot like dating.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Fall Fashion Forecast: Ugh!

Well, Autumn 2004 looks like the season of the truly hideous handbag!

If you feel like dropping the equivalent of a house payment - or two - on a hot new accessory to update your look this Fall, designers have created some of the ugliest monstrosities ever stitched up out of animal hide.

There seems to be no end to the revolting options available this season. Bottega Veneta's are really ugly. Dior's have the same nasty brown and tan logo design as always but with these odd green, yellow and reddish stripes for trim.

By far, the biggest accessory trend splashed all over the pages of Bazaar is the hanging of doo-dads from the bag. Designers are selling stuff like huge golden dice and little robots to personalise your look.

These doo-dads were featured as handbag decoration, hung like pendants and worn dangling like charms from furs in a manner very reminiscent of the toys kids hang from their parkas and backpacks but much more expensive. Some of them look like those woven bead lizards that kids make, except made from much more expensive beads.

What I got from this issue of Bazaar is that, while designers have not yet run out of fresh ideas, they are putting them together in the ugliest ways possible. And, the more expensive the bag, the uglier the damn thing is!

I suppose that the status-y part of the status accessory biz is that a woman will shell out a fortune for the most fashionably ugly bag as an outward sign of how much money she has to waste. Because the bags will look dated so quickly that there is no way on earth that she'd be caught dead with the same bag a year from now!

Next year, these scary-bad bags will probably show up in the upscale resale shops....alongside the fur-trimmed, high-heeled booties that look like the ones that Phyllis Diller used to wear. And the strappy sandals with fur trim or horsehair ponytails that are also fresh this season.

You gotta wonder.


Friday, July 30, 2004

Don't Kill My Buzz

Thanks to CSPAN, I have been able to enjoy the speechifying up in Boston without having to listen to network commentary.
 
It's been an inspirational week. I clapped. I laughed. I cheered. And I'm not ashamed to say that there were a few times when I got a little misty.
 
Heck,I've even dug out my red/white/blue rhinestone donkey pin, so you've been warned!
 
I'm not only ready to take my country back. I'm takin' my flag back, dammit!
 
 
 
 

Thursday, July 29, 2004

It's a Girl Thing

I'm a shoe freak.
 
Funny, considering the fact that I am almost always barefoot.
 
I suppose that my love of cool footwear was born of a childhood spent wearing "corrective shoes" and orthodics. I even had to wear shoes at the beach! Except for dance class and bed, I was laced into saddle shoes. Sometimes they were brown and white, sometimes they were black and white.
 
At length, my doctor decided that my feet were...well, "correct". No more saddle shoes! I could wear whatever I wanted!!
 
Now, you might think that the first thing I would do under those circumstances would be that I would run out and buy shoes. Actually, I pretty much gave up wearing shoes at all.
 
I decided that I would only wear shoes when I had to and that, if I had to wear shoes, they would damn well be terrific. Of course, my definition of terrific has altered a bit, from time to time.
 
For about twelve years, it meant a pair of custom Italian boots I bought in Florence when I was fifteen. Damn, those were great boots! Tortoise-shell dyed, covered heel, fit perfectly and both the most extravagant and sensible purchase that I have ever made in my life.
 
For quite a few years, terrific meant delightfully inexpensive, embroidered slippers from China. They were almost as nice as being barefoot.
 
I have also bought my share of truly wicked shoes. There was a pair of skyscraper high peau de soie dancing slippers . And the anklestraps that lost a heel at a disco on a Hallowe'en night in Greenwich Village when I was flung against a riser on the dance floor. Then there were the electric blue sling-backs that I took out to the Sangre de Christo Mtns. of New Mexico. Truly great shoes, each and every one of them!
 
Sensible shoes are my concession to necessity. But, whenever I buy them, I nearly always buy a second pair of shoes that are not sensible at all. They are shoes for my spirit, for my inner self.
 
Which brings me to the month of July, wherein I purchased five pairs of shoes. Five. Only one pair was even remotely sensible. The other four are anything but.

 
As I sit here and look at them, and try them on, I am trying to listen to what my inner self is saying through selecting these shoes. What part of my personality is trying to be heard? What part of my life is being neglected? Is there a reason for my buying five pairs, apart from the obvious fact that they were sale and very, very reasonable?
 
Last night, I went to Stein Mart and was trying to decide between an oh-so-cute pair of black and white patent slides covered with 3D daisies and a pair of ballet-pink slides. I asked TonyP which pair he thought would look better with jeans. He answered that the pink ones were good dangling shoes because there was a pattern on the sole. Hmm....so, I tried it. They did dangle awfully well.
 
Today, my inner self is anxious to take those pink sandals out for a spin and contemplating a pedicure.



Monday, July 19, 2004

Well, I'm Back

I don't know what it is about Sundays, lately.
 
A month ago, I was en route to church and managed to fall over a portion of The Wall on Franklin Street. Not only did it embarass the hell out of me but it left me with the bloodied and bruised shins of a parochial school field hockey player.
 
So, a week ago Sunday (and oddly coincidently en route to church...hmmm...) I got my fingers closed in the door of our X-Terra.
 
Needless to say, typing has been a bitch and I have been rather lazy about updating this blog. But the wounded digits are returning to normal and I've disguised their appearance with three layers of bronzey lacquer so they don't look TOO alarming as my fingers flash across the keyboard.
 
 
 
 

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Doctor Where

Watching BBC America, I was thrilled to find The Saint, The Prisoner and The Avengers are now part of the Friday lineup.

What a relief for those of us who simply cannot tolerate one more evening of DIY or crappy britcoms such as My Hero and Are You Being Served (which we can also catch on North Carolina's Public TV...thanks to all of those donations they squeeze out of retirees that hang out at the Cafe at the Village of Fearrington, reading the NY Times and pretending they're not in North Carolina.....but I digress.)

Anyway, Jon Pertwee was on the episode of The Avengers that was on this evening: "From Venus With Love". Seeing him reminded me of a comment someone made the other day about the early episodes of Dr Who having gone missing some years back. Here's a piece about those missing eps and about some of the other bits of TV history that ended up in the recycle bin.

So, I suppose I've no right to complain that The Invaders is not available on DVD. Even though I know that the videos are out of print and that there are no DVDs out there, I am at least reaonably certain that copies of the series are out there.

Perhaps Chris Carter has a copy that he'd loan me?

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

DON'T PANIC

I have a second-hand PDA that TonyPlutonium gave me a few months ago. Originally, I had planned to use it to help organise my life.

Well, quite obviously that's not worked out.

The incessant beeping forced me to turn the volume off. So, now the only time it reminds me of anything is if I turn it on.

Of course, I play Solitaire on it. I also use it to record phone numbers and the like.

But the function I treasure most is that it holds the text of several of my favourite books. When I tire of losing at Solitaire, I can pull up Wind in the Willows where I left off, or lose myself in the pages of Dracula.

But the book I want on the PDA, naturally, is The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

I never start up the PDA without looking for the words: "Don't Panic".

For all of you H2G2 fans out there, I offer this link.

Check it out and have fun. Me? "I'll root around for the water bison. Trillian, you see if you can find the jar the admiral keeps his anacondas in."

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Friday morning I get a call from my mother.

"It's your mother. I'm in the emergency room."

Not a phone call you're ever really ready for.

I was sound asleep when she phoned, so it took a moment or two before I realised what she was saying. And there was rather a lot of beeping going on in the background. Seems her doctor discovered that she has a slight electrical problem with her heart.

My mother hasn't been a hospital patient since giving birth to me nearly half a century ago. So, lying around, waiting, and getting stuck with needles doesn't come naturally to her.

She's home now. I stayed with her last night but tonight she seemed really anxious to get me out of there so she could resume her routine.

When we called her this evening, she asked when I was going to come over to get my carton of yoghurt OUT of her refrigerator. "Are you coming to get it tonight, after the fireworks", she asked, "or is it staying there forever?"

Sounds like she's feeling a whole lot better.

Friday, July 02, 2004

So, Anyway....

July is the month that I set aside to begin editing my novel.

To be more specific, I have to transcribe the first draft into a digital format because my husband adamantly refuses to be my beta reader if it means trying to read my manuscript in long hand.

I also have one painting only half finished and three empty canvases staring at me from the corner of my studio.

Then there's the Personal Essay that I have to write for my grad school app..

So, naturally I am doing absolutely everything else BUT.

My favourite time-waster these days is making altered books. I get to cut up, destroy and remake books and do massive amounts of collage. I get to play with gilding, practise calligraphy and generally engage in small-scale artistic mayhem.

So, in a way, I suppose it's work.

But don't remind me of that fact, because I still think I'm just playing.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Quote For The Day

"I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by."

-Douglas Adams

Friday, June 25, 2004

Thoughts While Walking at the Gym

I REALLY don't feel like going to the gym!

O.K.. Hitting myself in the head with the emergency defib box is probably not the best way to start a workout.

Why don't I ever come on "clockwise" day ?

Gawd! That music sux!!

Oops....it IS clockwise day.

Lanes, People! Lanes! That's what the different coloured lines are for.

Whoa! She's drifting over.

Hmmmm, heart rate's in range. Cool.

Damn, this feels great! Wow! Great workout!

Why don't I come here EVERY day?

Gawd! That music sux!

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Musings at Midsummer

It is nearly 9:00 pm and pink still lingers in the sky.

I can hear the sound of the loudspeaker at the ballfield over the hill. Some league or another has been playing at the high school. And, although I cannot see (or even really hear) the game, it's nice to know that it's there. A small plane takes off fom the airstrip on the other side of the trees and the air is filled with lightening bugs.

Sometimes, I forget where I live. What with the new subdivisions and the proliferation of retail chains, there are days when I feel as if I could be anywhere...Pineville, Gaitherburg, or what have you.

Those are the days when I'm feeling jaded, obviously. Because I can't think of too many college towns that can't keep a Gap in business. Say what one might (and I've said a lot) there is still something about this town that lets it remain a small town.

Maybe that is why people move here in droves. Maybe it isn't just because of the high ratings the schools get. Maybe people are drawn to this place in just the same fashion as I have been lured into staying.

It is still difficult to go anyplace in this town and not see someone you know....especially Lowe's or the movies. And, as one who has spent many years here, there is a comfort in that which is hard to describe.

Of course, there's the downside, as well. People that you wish you would never see again tend to resurface at funny times. But there's an odd comfort in that as well. If nothing else, I know where I am.

Of course, there are lots of new faces. But that has always been the case. And, if more of them remain here rather than move on, I suppose that it is because they, too, have found a home.




Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Art In The Open

If you've read the Washington Post recently, you may have seen mention of PandaMania. That's one of those popular fundraising activities where local artists decorate large Fiberglas animals that are set up around town and then auctioned off.

Vandalism of such statues is not uncommon, as was the case with the wolves set up around Raleigh during the Red Wolf Ramble. And now, the D.C. pandas are being vandalized.

I've seen contracts between organizers and artists which often spell out construction and decoration guidelines for the artists which are aimed at minimizing the damage to the sculptures by vandals.

But those measures don't salve the hurt feelings of artists who have put their time and heart into the adornment of these figures, only to see them defaced.

It's impossible for me to fathom the mindset of anyone who would vandalize artwork. But the problem is a real one and it's forced me to reconsider my desire to participate in our local Public Arts program.

This program seeks to exhibit original art (not brightly decorated pandas and bovines) in public spaces about town. Some month's it might be an ambiguous outdoor installation in a public park or a giant flower made from recycled metal. Some, it is wall art, hung in the clerk of court's office or over the water fountain at the public library.

And that's what I've been after. No kidding.

For several years, I have been submitting slides for consideration by the Public Arts committee. Sure, that has partly been because I wanted the exposure. But there's more to it. I have really wanted to give something back to my community and maybe make that cold, beige wall in a municipal building a little less cold and beige.

My enthusiasm for the program is somewhat dampened by my fear that someone will have a waterfight by one of my watercolours or decide to alter one of my paintings with a Sharpie.

A few days ago, I went by the library and saw this month's exhibition. They're pastels and one of them, in particular, caught my eye. It's a portrait, so delicately rendered that the sheerness of her shawl reveals the dress beneath and the curls of her white hair seem to stir in the breeze.

Funny thing about pastels- they're fragile as hell! Like butterfly wings. Sure, they are sprayed with fixative. But too much will ruin the colour and finer touches will simply blow away. It takes layers of delicate pastel with light sprays of fixative to build up a portrait like the one at the library. Those fine wisps of hair were probably not fixed at all.

You don't hang pastels any place where they are likely to be jarred. And never, NEVER, turn them over and give them a shake--remember Etch-A-Sketch?

I probably won't go back to the library while those pastels are there. They are far too vulnerable where they have been hung and I couldn't bear to see them damaged.

That's not to say that I don't support public arts programs or that I think that all art should stay behind velvet ropes. Far from it! I wish that cities would start commissioning public art again.

But, as an artist, I just don't feel like I can risk my work. Not financially, emotionally.....or spiritually.

Right In Your Own Back Yard

I have lived in the same state for all but 3 1/4 years of my life.

I was not born here.

My parents moved around a lot when I was little. We finally settled down in North Carolina when I was three, on land surrounded by my father's people. It was rural then, with fields and cows and horses but, like so many parts of our state, the area was annexed by the city down the road.

I've traveled a lot, both in the U.S. and abroad. But, when I went to University, it was in-state. In fact, apart from a six month period around my marriage, I've never lived more than about 75 miles from where I grew up.

I know the route from my childhood home to where I now live so well that I can tell where I am by smell- particularly on a Summer evening.

The same cannot be said of my familiarity with the rest of the state.

I am working to correct this. When planning family vacations and celebrations, I try to find new places to go and new things to within the state. As a result, I am learning so much about our History, Geography and the surprising variety of rich cultural traditions.

I think it's remarkable that a person can live in this state their whole life and there is still so much to learn and discover.

So, it doesn't matter where you live or how long you have lived there, my advice to you is to look around and see your home with new eyes. Read books, visit historic sites and learn about the place where you live.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

I Kid You Not...

CSPAN is showing the Reagan lying-in-state!

It's like a dead-pres cam.

People may joke about CSPAN but you don't get THAT kind of riveting TV anywhere else....

except CSPAN2.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Conversation With A Muse

Last Fall,, I attended a conference where one of the exercises was to write a conversation with our muse. What follows is a portion of my conversation.

Muse: "How are you doing?"

Me: "OK, I guess."

Muse: "And the Art....How's IT coming?"

Me: " It's been better."

Muse: "You're trying too hard. Let go. You have to let it come THROUGH you. Don't force it. You'll kill it, if you do that."

Me: "I know. I guess I'm stressed. Feeling the pressure, you know?"

Muse: "You care too much what people will think. Let them think what they like. It has nothing to do with you. That's not your job. Your job is to be prepared, to show up and to do the work. The best you can. You can't help what other people think."

Me: "Well, there's the money."

Muse: "Well there is ALWAYS the money, isn't there?"

Me: "I could use the work. I could use the money."

Muse: "Certainly. But do try not to let the money rule everything. Besides, you've got enough of a job there, just doing the Art. Haven't you?"

Me: "I suppose you're right. OK, I know you're right. But, sometimes, it's hard. It's frustrating. I keep looking for the right answer."

Muse: "There is no RIGHT answer. There is YOUR answer. You must search for THAT."

Me: "Thank you."

Muse: "You are, as always, welcome."



[Please remember that I retain all rights to what I write on this page. So, no plagiarism....got me??]

Monday, June 07, 2004

But It's June, For Cripe's Sake!!

WUNC-TV is at it again!

Yessiree! It's Pledge Time, yet again.

You can tell this because of such staggering BRILLIANT TV as:

The Legacy of Jim Croce

Dr. Wayne Dyer: The Power of Intention

a Fawlty Towers marathon

And they wonder why people don't send them money.

Sheesh!

'bucks Bucks

I kid you not....

Starbucks has a new rewards card that permits you to buy anything you want,anywhere you want, and have a percentage of the purchase (called Duetto Dollars) automatically credited toward purchasing anything at your local Starbucks. Or the one across the street from that one.... Or the one next door to that....

So, folks, why not put next term's tuition on your Starbucks card and make that next espresso a double!


Yeah...right.


How Dumb Can Ya Get?

Dull as dishwater, forgettable, and often impossible to hear from the cheap seats....these are things one expects from high school commencement addresses.

What you don't expect is plagiarism.

Orange County is now having to cope with the fact that a recent address was lifted in large chunks from a speech found on the internet.

During his speech at the Orange County High School Graduation in May, Orange County School Board Chairman, Keith Cook, delivered a speech that was largely made up of excerpts from a 1998 speech given by then Sec of H&HS, Donna Shalala.

At first, Mr. Cook said that he had written the speech. Then, when confronted with the Shalala comparison, he admitted that he had found the speech on the internet and thought it was a generic speech.

Generic speech? Would a student be able to get away with that excuse???

Mr. Cook said that he would have cited Shalala, if he'd known that the speech was hers.

The way I remember it, that excuse doesn't wash for students. Use of material without proper citation ought to get this guy a big, fat "F"!

From all I've heard on the local news, Mr. Cook has said that he has no plans to step down from his post.

Great message to send the high school grads off with, isn't it?

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Countdown to Azkaban

Of course, we all know that Prisoner of Azkaban opens this weekend!

Ms J.K. Rowling has revamped her website with a lot fun things to read and explore and plenty of easter eggs to hunt for!

So, that ought to give you something to do until Friday night, eh?

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

On Love and Coffee

Twenty years ago, this month, I decided (for the umpteenth time!) that I was going to leave this town for good.

I asked this REALLY cute guy, who was a regular at the bar where I worked, if he could help me move some stuff. I didn't know the guy very well.I recalled that he had said that he had a pickup truck. Other than that, I knew he had an earring, a job and liked Ska.

How could I have possibly guessed that this same man would bring me coffee the next morning? Or that he would bring me my coffee virtually every morning for the next twenty years?

Of course, the really funny thing about our whole getting together thing is the fact that a mutual friend had been trying to fix us up for several years. But we ended up taking the long way around and had to meet up on our own. I had no clue that he was "the cute guy from work" she had told me about. He had no idea that I was the "roommate" she'd told him about. I'll never forget the look on her face when she saw us together for the first time!

Some years later, when we renewed our wedding vows, the priest said that our union had been part of the divine plan from the beginning of Creation. Obviously, my old roommate was the only one to get the memo. Would have been nice to have been in the loop on that one!

But then, there would have been no surprises.

So, here's to TonyP: lover, partner, husband, best friend....and he makes the BEST coffee!

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Pet Peeve of the Day

I live on a corner lot, so I get to see the stupid way that people drive from most of my windows.

Of particular concern to me is the fact that our STOP signs seem to be invisible to most of the motorists that cut through our neighbourhood. Well, I suppose the signs become just a sort of pinkish blur as the drivers race past them.

I'm waiting for someone to explain to me what the deal is with running stop signs and red lights. It gets worse every year. In fact, where I live, it's pretty normal to see four or five cars breeze through every red light.

I was very pleased when the town put in red-light cameras last year. Not that I believe in outsourcing law enforcement. But the situation has gotten so bad that I figure any deterrent is better than nothing. Plus I'd like the bastards nailed.

Of course, there was the "invasion of privacy" debate. But the town installed the cameras at some of the most dangerous insections and waited for the fines to roll in.

I can't say that I noticed that they were much of a deterrent. People still ignored the red lights, just as always. By all rights, the town should have made a decent amount on the fines. But here's the thing: the freakin' cameras weren't functioning properly and most of the red-light runners were never recorded.

So, the town took the cameras down.

I don't have a solution to this problem. I just keep hoping that someone will come up with one because it's freakin' dangerous out there.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

Pet Peeve of the Day

There's a particular spot in Hell reserved for movie reviewers who wreck the reveal.

The case that stands out most prominently in my mind was a jerk who was reviewing Ghostbusters and had to go and mention the StayPuft Marshmallow Man.

Almost as unforgivable is the review I accidentally caught this morning on network TV which pretty much retold the entire plot of Shrek 2.

Netiquette requires spoiler alerts. Can't we expect the same courtesy from movie reviewers?



Inspirational Art

People who know me know that I was raised in a denomination that has a strong tradition of visual art.

I recently joined a denomination that seems to have a much higher regard for web designers than for artists: the ECUSA. And, when the subject of Art does come up, it's almost always either Literature or Music that's being discussed.

As an artist, I am sometimes a bit awash as to what role, if any, Contemporary Visual Art has in the Episcopal Church.

When I feel like this, I click here .The website is called the Episcopal Church and the Visual Arts.

Bookmark the site and check back from time to time. I have found the most amazing things there.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

All Is Forgiven

I've been SO disappointed that there hasn't been a new Daily Show the last couple of weeks!

But I can't stay ticked when I read what Jon S. said when he recently spoke at the William & Mary commencement .

The laughs I got from that almost made up for two weeks of reruns.


(Thanks to TonyP for the link!)

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Couldn't Have Said It Better

Ran across this item in Yahoo Entertainment:

ABC late night host Jimmy Kimmel told the upfront crowd, "If this were high school, NBC would be the rich kid whose dad bought them a BMW. CBS would be the straight-A student who's going to Stanford. Fox would be the jock who's not too smart, but still gets the chicks.

"And we're [ABC] the fat kids who eat paste."



I guess that the WB would be the pastor's kid making out in a car in the parking lot. UPN would be, what, the AV Geek?






travel

I made my first trip abroad when I was 15. I sailed the Mediterranean and traveled through Europe for six weeks with only a medium-sized suitcase and a small totebag.

Over the years, I perfected the art of flying off to New York or London with only a carry-on bag. I could go anywhere with just long, blonde hair, a black pantsuit, tight jeans, a couple of black tee shirts, black heels and a pair of boots I bought in Florence during that first trip to Europe.

These days, I can't seem to ever manage without enough luggage for six months!

A recent expedition to Western North Carolina required three suitcases, a totebag, field bag and an armload of things on hangers.

That was just for me.




Thursday, May 13, 2004

Interesting Crowther Article

This article appears in the current issue of the Independent Weekly.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

It's the end of the Whedon 'verse as we know it

There is only one more episode of Angel and I am not happy.

I suppose that I am one of the few Whedon fans who will admit to having rather liked Buffy: the Movie. It was quirky, featured a strong female lead and I even got to see it at the Star Light Drive-In. So, when I heard that there was going to be a BVS series, I was a bit skeptical.I assumed that a series would be watered down and lack the humor juxtaposed with classic horror.

So, OK. I was wrong. Needn't have worried. But then I had no idea, at the time, just how diluted the BVS movie was from the original concept. I wasn't prepared for just how fresh and smart and clever BVS the Series turned out to be.

Its spin-off, Angel, has always had a much different feel. It was always just as smart, of course, but it always lacked the optimism of BVS.

Perhaps that's why Angel was never able to capture the imagination or the following that BVS did. But that lack of optimism was true to the characters. They were all damaged souls, in some way. Especially Angel.

Unlike Spike, who won back his soul, Angel got his back as a curse and has always worn it like a curse. The demon inside of him was always fighting to get out. And, while Spike has already proven he is a hero, Angel has yet to prove just what he really is.

He has less than 60 minutes left.

So, next week we'll find out if it's Ragnorok all around. And whether, or not, Angel becomes a real boy.

I'll manage...somehow. I've gotten through the loss of X-files and Buffy. I'll make it through losing Angel.

Just don't get me started on Firefly.

Tiger's Baseball Webcast on Tuesday

As some of you know, our buddy PC has been doing commentary during the Woodberry Forest varsity baseball webcasts.

It was hard to get a good feed during the webcast on Tuesday and I lost the feed altogether at the top of the fifth inning.

Checking the Woodberry Forest website today, it appears that the weather in Virginia was to blame.

I am pleased to report that, according to Woodberry's website, the Tigers finished 5-1 over Fork Union!

Go, Tigers!!

Movie Review: Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

Jack Burton wants his truck back.

To get it, he has to descend into several different hells, defeat slavers, rescue captive women from the clutches of the evil 2000 year-old magician Lo Pan and endure the company of lawyer Gracie Law.

In 1979, John Carpenter directed Kurt Russell in the TV movie Elvis, which is often regarded as Russell's break-out into adult roles after having grown up in the Disney stable.

Carpenter also directed Russell in what has probably become the most famous of the actor's roles: Snake in the movie Escape from N.Y.. Big Trouble is another Carpenter/Russell endeavor.

The best way I can think of to describe Jack Burton is to suggest that he's probably watched Escape from N.Y. a few too many times and he thinks that he's Snake. But he's way out of his depth when he finds himself confronted with a world shaped by magic and dark sorcery.

There's a fine cast of supporting characters: Kim Cattrall as "Gracie Law", Dennis Dun as Burton's friend "Wang Chi" and veteran actor James Hong as the evil "David Lo Pan". Victor Wong plays the magician/tour bus driver "Egg Shen" and Wang's kidnapped girlfriend "Miao Yin" is Suzee Pai.

It is also interesting to note that the truly ridiculous theme song over the closing credits was the work of John Carpenter, as well.

The whole thing is played for laughs and is very, very over-the-top.

This flick is one of my "guilty pleasures", so I heartily recommend it to anyone who has a fondness for memorable taglines and who likes their popcorn microwaved.

It really shakes the Pillars of Heaven. No horse shit.

Monday, May 10, 2004

It's good to laugh

Granted, it's tough to find anything to laugh at, these days.

If it weren't for the Daily Show, I don't know how I'd have made it through the last couple of years.

Sunday, May 09, 2004

The Day After

Well, I discovered that it actually IS possible for me to be pleasant for eight straight hours.

It was getting kind of hard at about the six and a half hour point, when my back started to go. Fortunately, TonyP was booth-sitting with me and I was able to get up and walk around whenever I felt the need to.

The show might have been unbearable without his company and his encouragement. Really. I mean, after eight hours of smiling warmly and sincerely at everyone who wandered within three feet of my booth, I was in need of as much moral support as I could get my hands on.

Painting is hard work. Sitting there next to your paintings, in a high school gym, trying to sell them to passers-by is just the teeniest bit horiffic.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Post-Birthday/Pre-Show Malaise

Remember a few days ago, when the skies opened and we got five inches of rain in twenty-four hours? Yeah...that was my birthday!

Sucky weather aside, it was a fine weekend. Antique-ing, dining with friends and family and so on. Only problem was that the upcoming Spring Art Show was always there, in the not-so-far-back of my mind. I was constantly reminding myself to dwell in the present (and very soggy!) moment and wait until the day AFTER my birthday to start obsessing over the Show.

So, quite naturally, the day after my birthday, I went to the gym.

Day after that? Why, I had a class to go to. And so forth.

I perfected two skills, as an Art Major: Smoking and Procrastination. Actually, I had enough hours in Procrastination that I should have Minored in the subject.

Which brings me to the question that has troubled humanity for countless generations: Does studying Art at the university level prepare a student for anything at all?

Well, it does prepare one for exposing one's self to judgement and critics. And it can prepare the student for coping with "insuffucient funds". These are lifeskills that Art Majors can call on long after they have left the university.

Let's not forget perfecting the fine Art of Staring at Absolutely Nothing for extended periods of time. This skill can not only give the Art Major an aura of mysterious intensity but, also, suggests a complex interior life which may, in reality, be utterly lacking.

If it sounds like I am suggesting that university Art departments are responsible for cultivating annual crops of poseurs......well, let's just say that I don't think that the departments do anything to discourage their flourishing. I certainly feel that my old department awarded artistic temperment over artistic merit.

Please note that I am NOT talking about the quality or type of the artwork produced. I am talking about whether or not any work is produced at all. In my old department, an artistic temperment with no work produced often trumped the student who produced work but lacked the artsey affectations.

Where did I fit in? Someplace in the middle, I suppose. Sullen and volitile enough to count as temperment. Just enough work to meet my instructors requirements but nothing really ever stellar....or finished, for that matter. In fact, I have often felt like something of a fraud.

The only time that I don't feel that way is when I am painting.

When I paint, I know EXACTLY who I am.



Monday, April 19, 2004

Aaarg!

I suck at Art.

Which is sort of inconvenient, what with me being an artist and all.

There are some days when I can not only paint...I can FLY! I am facile and brilliant! Colours sing! The Universe flows through my brush and onto the paper or canvas set before me. On those days, painting is like dancing: strong, instinctive, joyous.

Obviously, today is NOT one of those days.

I have a show in two weeks. Frankly, I'm not sure that I have enough artwork to show (we'll forget for now that there is the whole getting it ready part of the process....all of the matting and framing and pricing, etc.). So, I have been trying to churn out some fresh watercolours to toss into a flip-rack, because I don't have any watercolours available for sale.

The reason that I feel so driven to produce some bright, sparkly watercolours is because I would really like to generate some income from this show and (face it) people don't have a whole lot of cash on hand to spend on paintings. So, I figure, a basket of watercolours might generate some sales.

But, today, my muses are not co-operating with me. Maybe they resent being market driven. Maybe they're tired. They aren't talking to me today, so I have no idea what's up with them. So, I'm left with that awful, empty feeling. Down is up and up is down and there is no colour in the world and everything is bleak and joyless. I am a sham. A hack. A middle-aged dilettante

A little while ago, I went upstairs to my husband's office and plopped down in a desk chair.

"I suck at Art!"

"No, you don't", he said. "You do not suck at Art. You're just having a bad day."










Friday, April 16, 2004

Movie Review: Jaws of Satan (1979 or 1981?)

Think Exorcist meets Jaws the Revenge (that's the one where the shark growls). Now, think snakes, instead of sharks but keep Satan and a priest. Did I mention there's a dog track?

Now, I've got a pretty high threshold of B-movie tolerance (as anyone who knows me can attest), but it was a bit of a chore getting through this one.

The story begins with a trainload of greyhounds and a king cobra. Not too bad for openers. But the plot doesn't so much unravel as it never knits together in the first place. Gretchen Corbett plays the doctor who starts to notice something unusual about the snake bites she's been treating and calls in an expert. The attacks threaten the opening of the new dog track which doesn't make the mayor at all happy. But the snakes are not there because of the dog track or even the lovely Ms. Corbett. They are there because of Fritz Weaver, who plays a priest who is under some extremely complicated curse put on his family many generations ago by some pissed off druids. Near as I was able to make out, the priest is left with no choice but to face his foe by going into a cave and lying down in a large stone bathtub.

OK, so it wasn't a brilliant movie. But they did have the decency to use real snakes (for the most part). And one interesting thing to note is the appearance of a VERY young Christina Applegate in what seems to have been her film debut.

Monday, April 12, 2004

A Clean Page

In an alternate universe, my closet is in order and I know where everything is.

That thought comforts me when I am trying to find something in the chaos which surrounds me in THIS universe.

Of course, it might be easier for me to find things in my closet if everything that I owned weren't black.



As part of my attempt to tidy things up, I am moving my blog to this site.

Thank you for your patience, while I try to sort through new templates and such.