Friday, September 26, 2014

Estate Sales, Errands And Dinner

The wife had a meeting to attend this morning, so I woke close to 10:00 to find her about to head out the door for that. Since he was already up and about, I suggested to Morris that he and I perhaps kill some time while she was otherwise engaged by checking out an estate sale being held by a prominent local family, which he was agreeable to, so I took some time to get the house opened for the day and then got dressed so we could go about our business.

The sale was actually fairly close to the house, so we toured the rambling home, which was largely empty since the sale had begun on Wednesday, reportedly with lines of people out the door, according to a friend of the wife's, but it was interesting to wander through and listen to the locals talking about the items they saw and what significance they assigned to them in the lives of the deceased former owners, which was both ghoulish and entertaining at the same time. "Oh, this must've been so and so's, he always liked to do (fill in the blank)" as if they had some oddball insight into the lives of the people who used to live in this house just because they'd had some passing encounter ages ago. For the house's part, it looked as if it hadn't had a doorknob changed on it since the late '70s, and even if you wanted to buy the place you'd have to all but tear it down to get a decent living space out of it, gut it at the very least.

Since we still had some time to kill, I asked Morris if he'd mind a few other stops, and we ended up visiting a couple other sales scattered across town to pass the time, none of which turned up anything all that interesting, then we noted the time and made our way back to the house to meet the wife after her meeting so that we could all go grab a bite to eat.

We headed out for lunch once the wife finally got home, running slightly late after her meeting, and had a nice meal at a Mexican place across town, where the food was okay but the service odd, especially after Morris and the wife both got weirdly obsessed with the fact that the staff were wearing different names for the restaurant on their shirts/uniforms, so the wife started drilling the waitress about why this could be, when the poor broad obviously just wanted to take our stupid order and get on with her life. The upshot is that the place is under a new owner (within the same family) and is returning to a business name that it had back in the '80s for whatever reason.

Yay, now I'll be able to sleep with this mystery out of the way.

We left there for the nearby Target, where I wanted to just take a pass through their Halloween stuff and see if anything caught my eye, which netted me nothing of interest, though I did happen across a few shirts in their t-shirt area, so that's gave me a few more things to sleep in, nerdy stuff that I wouldn't likely wear out, but something comfy for the house.

We grabbed a beverage at the nearby Starbucks, then headed home to chill for the afternoon.

Morris and the wife both wanted to nap, so I left them in the bedroom to relax and settled into the den to watch the little set of King Of The Witches video mixtapes that I'd had around for awhile now, making my way through the first installment (Woodhouse) and about halfway through the second (Baumgart) before the rest of the house stirred and it was time to head over to the Mother In Law's place to visit for a bit in advance of dinner out with friends.

I drove us to the MIL's place and we spent an hour and change catching up with the MIL and her Beau, then we had to split to meet Anastasia Beaverhouszen and Kno1 downtown at one of the favorite local haunts. We had a fun meal with them, visiting and enjoying a few cocktails before we had to say our goodbyes and go our separate ways. Our friends were both tired after having to work a trade show for Kno1's business that day and had to tap out early, so we said our goodnights and then headed home, where I decided to pop in something off the To-Watch Pile to pass the time as we had another drink and chilled for the evening in the den.

Mmmnn, Smutty!
Midnight Blue: Porn Stars Of The '90s was interesting enough, comprised of Al Goldstein interviewing and haranguing various and sundry folks in the business for a couple hours, the last little bit of which I watched alone, as both Morris and the wife tapped out to crash, so the last 15 minutes of things were just me and the Yorkie chilling in the den before I finally called it a night and headed into the Office briefly to charge the iPhone for a bit and look at e-mail and Facebook, ignoring the writing yet again in favor of trying to grab some sleep.

I'm out kids.

Be seeing you.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Magic Thursday

This morning I woke late after setting an alarm for 10:00, annoyed to hear the wife getting home and realizing that I'd slept until 11:00 instead. I dunno what's up with that, because I heard no alarm whatsoever, but the phone's done this to me a couple times in the past when I was sure I set an alarm but still woke late without ever hearing a single peep.

I dressed in a rush and we made our way across town to have an early-ish lunch at a deli, then we headed into the grocery store to stock up on stuff for the house and later in the week. The shopping wasn't bad and we didn't even run into anyone who wanted to chat and bullshit, which is what usually takes the longest time about shopping with the wife, social butterfly that she is. We did have a weird moment when a customer noticed that someone had left one of their bags behind and the checker, rather than take it and chase down the woman herself, well, she kept giving the customer who'd found it detailed descriptions of the person and which way she'd gone, as if it were now this lady's responsibility to run her down in the parking lot and return her salmon and assorted vegetables instead of someone who works at the fucking store. The wife finally asked why the checker didn't go after her herself if she was so worried about it, and she mumbled something about not being able to leave her register, but I would also say that the customer who saw this stuff was also part of the issue as well, since she wanted to look after the person and try to play hero instead of just pointing out the stuff and moving on with her life, leaving it firmly in the checker's court to deal with it. And that leads us back to the checker completely not giving a fuck if the person got their missing groceries, so it's all just a vicious sucky circle in the end.

We headed home and unloaded stuff and put away all the groceries, then the wife and pup were going to chill for a bit in the late afternoon in advance of Morris' expected arrival that evening. I wasted time with the Interwebs a bit, looked in on the iPad games, then decided to step back out for a beverage and try to clear my head, because after the grocery store I'd found myself in a weird mood, not down exactly but just feeling...off, for some reason or another.

I grabbed a tea at the Starbucks on the South side, then stepped into the liquor store to re-supply for the weekend, as I knew we were low on Maker's Mark.

No Stepping Up For Me. *Sad Face*
Since I was in the neighborhood I popped into the books, music and video outlet to poke around and found a magazine I wanted, then priced the Step Up movies, which they naturally didn't have, because fuck me for thinking about an impulse purchase, right? I have a couple of Interweb pals who love those movies and I was thinking it might be fun to watch them if they were cheap, just grab a pile of them and give them a spin with the wife, but naturally that was not meant to be.

I headed home and unloaded my stuff, visited with the wife a bit and then actually found myself fished into some Interweb nonsense in the Office, but still not the usual blogging stuff, wasting time instead with the redemption of several Marvel digital codes so that I wouldn't let them lapse, just to make sure they were successfully added into the collection.

The wife piddled with stuff on the Craft Room and I worked on a collage thing in the kitchen before making a cocktail and settling in the den with a YouTube diversion, watching a handful of stuff to pass the time as we waited for Morris. I even caught a portion of one of the main Everything Is Terrible! videos before the wife put in an order for pizza for dinner, just because it seemed to feel like the easiest thing to provide for the guest, then we ate while looking at more music videos until Morris got here.

YouTube stuff ate up the rest of the evening as we chilled in the den and visited around Die Antwoord clips that the wife seems to really dig, which amuses me to no end, then she finally had to call it a night and crash so that she can be up early for a meeting tomorrow morning.

Oh, Spider-Lady.
Morris and I stayed up late with cocktails and a re-watch of Magic Mike, just because I hadn't seen it in awhile, then I headed straight to bed to crash and read a bit of the first collection of Spider-Girl stuff that'd finally arrived in today's mail. I have to say that I'm already digging Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz' take on the material, just because it reminds me of their heyday from my youth when they worked on The Amazing Spider-Man together in the mid-eighties, making for some of my fondest memories of the character and period of collecting.

I'm out kids.

Be seeing you.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Person Of Wednesday And Other Television

With no morning agenda, I thankfully slept in a little later than usual today, as I wasn't fretting about being up and about to deal with the ice machine anymore, and was pleased to find it filling with ice after I'd thrown in the contents of the ice bucket in the hallway fridge last night to help cool it off when I went to bed, expediting the process of it filling properly.

The pup and I got the house opened for the day and after I found the wife returning from her outings we caught up on her day thus far and debated plans for the afternoon.

She was keen to catch a nap after an early morning, so I decided to step out and poke around for a late lunch, with the idea being that I'd grab some extra stuff for later that would hang around as leftovers for dinner. Easy-peasy.

I picked up Chinese food from a place across town just because it sounded good and I was still keen for some sort of Asian cuisine after yesterday's abortive Thai lunch fiasco, so I dressed and headed out with her order and only had to wait a short time for the food, standing in the little holding area with a few other bored looking folks who'd apparently brought everyone in their homes with them to keep them company, because it was a little crowded in the little take-out area.

I headed back to the house and ate in the den, with the Yorkie surfacing from a nap to see if she did indeed deserve a few nibbles of rice, which I eventually let her nag me into sharing with her, just because she even did that cute little thing where she puts her chin on my knee and tries to look non-chalant about her intentions. If it were an animated moment, she'd be whistling casually, it's quite silly and funny at the same time.

The afternoon was eaten up with the fourth disc of Person Of Interest season one, which I wanted to plow through because I knew we have house guests on tap for the weekend and I didn't want us having folks underfoot to cock up my progress on this re-watch, especially at the 11th hour of the season. The show ended well and really set us up for great stuff in season two, and I'm pleased to say that all of it holds up so well that I want to write something more in-depth about the show at some point, maybe in one of the TV nerd groups on Facebook that I frequent.

Eventually the wife and I got into the Chinese leftovers and the two part season finale of Dallas, which was as soapy and silly as I'd hoped, so that was a fun way to end the current run of things and left a big cliff-hanger for next year or whenever this stuff comes back.

I May Fight You For The Dog
When This Is Over.
The wife stepped out to grab a dessert item for us and I watched a 'new to me' episode of Regular Show, then popped in the first disc of the second season of Person Of Interest, which the wife watched a bit of with me, then called it an early night because she had an early morning meeting, and then we'd made lunch plans and a grocery shopping agenda for the afternoon tomorrow.

I finished the first disc of the new season, marveling at how well they build the 'team' in the series, especially with the rather charming introduction of Bear, the German Shepard that Reese...um, acquires from some neo-Nazi clowns close to the beginning of the season. It's especially funny when Reese can immediately get the dog to respond to him because he speaks Dutch commands to him, which the Aryan dumbasses can't do. Great stuff.

Again, I called it a somewhat late night, ignoring the Interwebs and blogging entirely for a third night, which I think may be a symptom of some sort of depression creeping around the edges of things, though I'm not sure what it's relevant to at this stage of things.

I'm sure it'll pass soon enough.

Be seeing you.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Shopping, Samsara, And More Terrorist Threats

I woke with the alarm this morning, stretched and yawned and tried to get the sleep from my eyes, then finally shook off the pillows and got up to open the house for the day. As it happened, the wife already out with the Yorkie, dropping her off at the Groomer's so I weighed options and decided against dicking with the blog this morning, instead looking in on iPad games for a few while I traded texts with EL about a possible lunch meeting if he had the time.

I met him at 11:45 at the usual Thai place to find it packed to the gills, people waiting ahead of us and no one who'd actually been seated with any food on their tables, leading us to believe that the ten minutes we'd stood there might be the beginning of something bad. We weighed options and decided to try the Greek place across town, wasted another 10 minutes or so in transit, then were quickly seated and ordered, only to have the food take 20 minutes or more to hit the table, by which time EL was coming out of his skin worrying about being back at school in time to teach his next class, so when the food arrived we told the guy to pack it up to go, and I shoved EL's food at him, staying behind to pay while he raced off to his job.

What a fucking disaster.

I was annoyed because I still had a few errands to run that I'd expected to do after a meal, but now I'm driving around with food getting cold, so I hit the bank and did the recycling, then made a point of stopping to grab a hotdog and a shake at a drive-thru, because if my meal turned out to be dogshit, I wanted at least a small portion of it to be quasi-fresh and reliably tasty.

Heading home, I found the wife and pup returned from their morning outing, so I related the lunch misery to her and caught up on her day so far, then I settled at the kitchen counter to eat and look at the paper, while the Yorkie begged for scraps, then I decided to step out and poke around at first Walmart for a few things in hopes that it'd change my mood with a bit of retail therapy, because that morning had been a real pain in the ass overall.

Naturally, I found nothing at Walmart, defying rumors of this or that title turning up there for the October Halloween season, then I hit up Best Buy and decided to pull the trigger on a few things to keep my big fat Halloween boxset company since I'd received the expected cancellation note on the order yesterday and had decided to splurge. The canceled order wasn't that big of a deal because $19.95 just had to be a typo, y'know? I wasn't put off by this since it was an obvious mistake, though I did already see grumbling of people on the Interwebs whining about the 'bait and switch' tactics, which seems a bit much. There was a fuck-up, they fixed the fuck-up, I'm sorry they didn't give you the product at a massive loss to themselves, but you HAD to know it's a mistake, right? Right?

But no, you have people whining about how they 'advertised it at a certain price', wah, wah, poor me, how dare they not bankrupt themselves over a mistake! The nerve of some companies!

My little prizes in hand, I headed home to find the wife out to another meeting and then a visit with the Mother In Law at her place, so I settled in the Office and wasted time poking around the web instead of working on the blog as I should have been doing.

Imagine my surprise as I'm pouring a cocktail around 5:00 PM and the phone rings to tell me that the Repair Guys are on their way at long last to deal with the ice machine, something that I had basically given up on happening today, so I told them to come on and get it over with.

Soothing. Gorgeous And

They arrived around 5:30 and set to work, cleaning the entire machine and getting things up and running, a process that took almost an hour by the time it was all said and done, so I warned the wife away just so she wouldn't have to deal with it and popped in Samsara in the den off the To-Watch Pile just because it felt like the kind of thing that was fairly quiet and unobtrusive that I could check out while they did their bit and still let me enjoy something instead of feeling as if I was just waiting around for them to leave. The movie was gorgeous, and was well worth the blind-buy, so that's another little flick that will make for nice background viewing when entertaining.

The Repair Guys eventually left the machine on another cleaning cycle, instructing to me let it finish and then run it again, just to be safe, then the wife finally got home and we caught up while finishing out the last of the film.

You Have To Stop Dating Civilians.
We put together the stuff for shrimp tacos and ate while watching Garfunkel And Oates, then moved on to the season premiere of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., which started off strong, then I caught the season four premiere of Person Of Interest while the wife caught up on Facebook and Pinterest on her phone, since this show has never seemed to catch her interest for whatever reason, a point of constant consternation to me, since it's so damned fun. Oh well, her loss, I suppose.

The wife eventually headed to bed and I popped in the third disc of Person Of Interest season one for a re-watch, which was honestly a little odd in the face of the fourth season opener, just because of how much has changed over the years, but it all holds up well, especially in the larger chunks of viewing.

I crashed late again, ignoring the blogging yet again and not even bothering to publish anything today - I dunno what's wrong with me this week.

Be seeing you.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Movie Sidewalk Shame

Kicking off my Monday in an effort to be productive, I was up at 9:00 AM with the alarm and getting the house opened for the day. The pup and I fetched the newspaper and then I put in a call to the Repair Guys about our ice machine, which was in dire need of servicing. Since I wasn't expecting to hear anything from the Repair Guys any time soon, I threw on some clothes and got ready to step out and run a few errands, especially in light of a certain deal that had obviously fallen through.

Y'see, over the weekend it became widely known that the Turner Classic Movies Shop had a handful of very desirable boxsets for $19.99 apiece, which was a fucking steal compared to the $40, or even $100+ retail that they'd normally go for. So, naturally, this news made the rounds on all the various movie nerd sites and I'm sure they were deluged with a rush of orders on Sunday afternoon and Monday morning, until things were shut down and set back to normal pricing. I'd placed a $26 order for the 15 disc (!) Halloween boxset that collects all the various cuts of the films, just to see if it actually went through, but I wasn't holding my breath, just because it was a fairly obvious pricing error and if you got the price, great, if not, oh well, you tried, right?

Naturally, I woke up to an apologetic e-mail from the TCM site and a 30% off coupon for my troubles, which I figured was close to useless on their site considering their normal pricing on most items, so I just figured I'd keep an eye on my credit card to make sure the pending charge went away and leave it at that, but I was still kinda keen to be able to check out that Halloween set, so I had decided to step into Best Buy and hold it in my hands, just to see if it made me wanna spring for it at the normal price or wait until later.

As it turned out, I ended up purchasing the set as well as a few other items, then finally hit a drive-thru for some lunch and headed home with my new prizes to eat and see what was on the television. While I dug into my lunch I watched the American Dad recorded from last night and a couple episodes of The Strain, which has felt very much like an adapted novel (which it is, obviously) in the way it tends to jump from one character's storyline to another, all seemingly unrelated at this stage of things. I'm liking but not loving it, so I have to wonder if I'd feel more interested if I had read the source material and had more of an investment to see how well they adapted it?

Coming to a stopping point with my television time-wasting, I headed into the Office and got a blog post published, then worked on getting a second one ready to go for later in the day.

Innocent People Can Get Into
Terrible Jams Too.
Feeling slightly accomplished, I decided to finally make a call on the Movie Shame Monday selection and moved back into the den to pop in Where The Sidewalk Ends off the To-Watch Pile and another classic Film Noir that I have yet to see. It's a great flick, starring Dana Andrews as a tough cop up who finds himself up against it when he accidentally kills a suspect and tries to pin it on a known criminal, with Gene Tierney as his budding love interest whose father becomes implicated in the murder while Andrews investigates his own crime (!), desperate to find a way out. I really enjoyed it a lot and would re-visit, as the Andrews/Tierney combo is always a winner.

The wife joined me in the den after the film and we watched the season finale of Married, which I enjoyed quite a bit and will look forward to coming back for a second season, then we put the television on hold for a few and went to the kitchen to make spaghetti and meatballs, which is always a fun process and feels rather 'couple-y' to me, working in tandem over the stove to make a meal together. It just makes for fun memories.

Hey, That Guy Is Gonna Be The
Riddler! Okay, Jesus, We GET IT.
We moved on to a more nerd-centric evening of television viewing once the meal was ready, kicking off things with the series premiere of Gotham, then the return of Sleepy Hollow for a second season and after all that was said and done I put the wife to bed and spent a little time picking up the den. And as far as it goes, I was okay with the Gotham show even though it's pretty heavy-handed on every level about who the various characters are meant to be within the Batman mythos, and Sleepy Hollow remains good corny fun for what it is, and always makes me laugh at some point, so that's okay by me.

Once I had the wife and pup tucked in for the night, I picked up the kitchen a little bit, went into the Office and published a second post on the blog and then settled into the den with a final cocktail and the second disc worth of Person Of Interest season one, which is just a ton of fun on the marathon re-watch because you get to see all the little character moments building as the season progresses.

I finally set my alarm for 9:00 in the AM, then crashed out late without any consideration for the blog because I'm not exactly feeling it this week, though I'm not sure why.

Be seeing you.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Extraterrestrial Ticking

Sleeping last night with no alarm, I woke late again, roused shortly after noon to the same sound of falling rain, the washing machine doing its bit in the Laundry Room and the wife puttering around in the kitchen. The Yorkie was roaming the extent of the house, on high alert lest the rain take a turn for the worse, as is her custom during any inclement weather. I shook off the bed and got the house opened for the day, braving the moist wilds of the front lawn to retrieve the newspaper, which was thoroughly covered in mud, so I did my best to brush it off on the shrubs out front and get it removed from its protective plastic, so I wouldn't be trailing muddy and water all across the living room.

Since they'd been up for some time, the wife and pup were actually getting ready to chill in the bedroom, so I visited with them for a few, then dressed to step out and grab myself a bite to eat, since I was feeling a bit peckish. I left them watching some bad television (another one of those Investigation Discovery programs about people killed by vicious exes or some such shit) and headed out to hit Starbucks for a tea, just because it sounded good, and then maybe try to grab some take-out chicken. The tea wasn't hard to acquire, but I was greeted by a long wait in the drive-thru of the chicken place, only to finally get to the order box and find it taped over with a 'cash only' sign because their credit card machine was tits up. Naturally, I'd spent most of my cash at the weird little burger joint yesterday, so I headed across town to a different restaurant and grabbed my damned chicken strips so that I could finally go home and eat sometime before the dinner hour rolled around.

"What's Going On Back
"Police Brutality."
The weather continued to be weird, as my entire drive around town had been with merely threatening gray skies, and a few sprinkles, but no actual rain. When I got a few blocks from the house the rain got harder, though I never encountered an actual downpour, but I did have to hot-foot it from the garage to the house to keep from getting soaked, which just seemed typical of my luck this afternoon. As the rain got heavier outside, I settled in the den to eat and continue my TiVo scrubbing, selecting a film from 1970 called ...tick...tick...tick, which stars Jim Brown as the first black sheriff coming on the job behind George Kennedy in a small Southern town, and the ensuing powder keg that the town becomes over the next few days. Racial tensions run high as a white man is arrested for killing a young girl in a drunk driving incident, then a rape on the black side of town escalates things even more - I was very engrossed and really loved the way the film is put together, as people try to find their footing amid the race relations that were still relatively new to everyone at the time. It's definitely something that was worth the wait and I'm glad I recorded it way back in October of last year, if memory serves.

After the movie I spent some time on the PC in the Office, getting a blog post ready for the evening and placing an order for some stuff from Arrow Video, who were having a flash sale over the weekend, then I spent some more time in the den, catching up on a randomly recorded Tim And Eric's Bedtime Stories, which was less than thrilling, if I'm being honest. Their absurdist stuff just didn't grab me, which is odd, as I like other equally silly stuff, I've just never particularly seen the appeal of the Tim And Eric show in general, none of the commercials do a lot to sell it to me and I was hoping that Zach Galifianakis being in this would help, but it really didn't. Oh well, I don't need any new shows to follow anyway.

Helluva Morning After, Eh?
The late afternoon found me popping in a Netfux rental of Extraterrestrial, a film by Nacho Cerda, which kind of surprised me by being nothing like what I was expecting. The man's work I'm familiar with is a series of brutal and gory short films, then a rather well-constructed ghost story called The Abandoned from several years ago, so I was thinking this would be something in the creepy or disturbing vein of alien encounters, and instead it's almost like a rom-com that happens to take place in the midst of an alien invasion. A man wakes up in a woman's apartment, where they have awkward morning after conversations and can't exactly recall if they slept together or not, but this soon falls by the wayside when they realize the areas been deserted in the face of the arrival of a massive spaceship hovering over the city. A neighbor and the girl's ex round out the meager cast, as they try to make sense of what's happening and our lead couple fight their urges for one another, for the most part. It's got some amusing bits and surprised me by being a slow rom-com vibe set against an apocalyptic kind of background, very different from what I was expecting. Worth a peep, especially if you actually know what you're getting into.

The wife and pup surfaced towards the end of the film and we discussed dinner options, eventually ordering in some deli stuff, which we tucked into over the Fox animation re-run stuff, then we finally rounded out the night with a new Boardwalk Empire, which is still impressing me even as we blow through this short final season.

I put the wife and pup to bed, then headed to the Office to get a post published and write both Saturday and Sunday's posts, so I can go into Monday feeling somewhat caught up.

Be seeing you,