Monday, July 31, 2006

Sure, the Sopranos and Sex and the City are great shows, but my favorite HBO series are Deadwood and the Wire. Forget the sanitized wild west of Gunsmoke - with Deadwood you can almost smell the dirt through the tv. The writing and acting are superb, and Ian McShane has the best lines on tv today. The series combines real historical figures such as Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane, George Hearst, Wyatt Earp, Al Swearingen, Seth Bullock and Sol Star with great drama about the development of the west, and the birth of a mining town.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

The Kids are still alright! Tickets for the Who's November 4 show at the Hollywood Bowl go on sale this Monday - color me stoked to be able to hear Roger wail "Love Reign O'er Me" one more time . . .

Monday's addendum - got my tickets today!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Twenty five years ago, my friends and I threw a party and stayed up all night to watch the wedding of Charles and Diana live from London, and toasted the nuptials with Bailey's Irish Cream.

On the silver anniversary of that day, Pam Anderson married Kid Rock. Here she is partying before the first of four ceremonies.

God Save the Queen.

Finished my Soleil tank top, and I'm wearing it tonight to a wine tasting charity fundraiser!

This report from the AP today - -

Seven horses euthanized in Del Mar's opening week
July 29, 2006
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) -- Seven horses were euthanized after being injured in competition or training during the first week of Del Mar's summer meeting, prompting track officials to seek answers.

SEVEN HORSES WERE PUT DOWN IN ONE WEEK????? While I am concerned about animal welfare in general, I'm not anti-horse racing, by any means - when I was younger, my grandfather had a box at Hollywood Park, and I enjoyed my first day at the races when I was 15; nevertheless, this is outrageous, and yet it barely rates a mention in the news. I guess what is more shocking than the deaths of the seven, is that some effort is being made to save at least one horse - Barbaro. Needless to say, there will be no interruption of the daily race schedule to determine what is leading to all these injuries.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

I had such good intentions today. I picked out a number of new recipes from this month's CookingLight Magazine. I went to the market - two actually - and bought the ingredients for Orange Chicken with Green Onions, Spicy Chicken Cakes with Horseradish Aioli, and a few dishes described as good for pre and post workout meals. While I did make the filling for Peanut Butter Plus sandwiches (to die for I might add), it was just too hot to contemplate cooking the rest, so to beat the heat, Hanna, Samantha and I went to Pelican Isle in Huntington Harbor. A lovely patio, a dish of cold water for the dogs, Chardonnay for me, and some pretty good appetizers left us all happy. Oh, and the Caribbean Steel Band was perfect for a Sunday afternoon.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

I've finally made some decent progress on my Soleil tank from The bottom edge lace will need some serious blocking, but I'm pleased with the results so far, and hope to finish it today.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

I finally watched "The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill" which is summarized by Yahoo Movies as:
"The true story of a Bohemian "St. Francis" and his remarkable relationship with a flock of wild green-and-red parrots: Mark Bittner, a dharma bum, a homeless street musician in San Francisco, falls in with the flock as he searches for meaning in his life--unaware that the wild parrots will bring him everything he needs. Mark was born and raised in southwestern Washington State. His ambition as a teenager was to be a Great Novelist, but Mark was alarmed by the uniformly miserable fates of all the writers whom he loved. So he decided to pursue a career in music instead. After hitch-hiking through Europe in search of experience, he moved to San Francisco determined to sink or swim as a poet-singer-songwriter. He sank. Completely bereft, he turned to spiritual seeking and ended up on the street where he spent the next fourteen years. Ultimately his search led him to the wild parrot flock, which, in turn, led him back to writing, and his first book: "The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill." The hardcover edition, published by Random House, was a best seller; the paperback edition comes out in late January 2005."

I put this movie in my Netflix Queue quite a while ago, after I read the review by Roger Ebert (he and Peter Travers of Rolling Stone are my favorite film reviewers), and finally watched it. It is wonderfully sentimental, unapologetically anthromorphic, and a nice reminder to open our eyes to what is around us - both in nature and in human beings.

Addendum - I also watched Brokeback Mountain this weekend . . . how was this movie, with a universal theme of loneliness and unfulfilled passions, that controversial?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Hanna spotted a kitty this morning on our walk. As usual, the cat got away. It never ceases to amaze me that after dozens of cat encounters, Hanna still hasn't learned her lesson. In every single case, the dog comes out the loser, and she has the scars on her nose to prove it. When I first adopted Hanna from a rescue group, she was 15 months old and WILD. Bailey, the siamese mix was 14 years old, and the undisputed queen of the house. It never occurred to me that there would be any problem - I'd dog sat for other dogs, and in each case it took exactly one encounter with Bailey for the dog to learn that she was in charge. Hanna never learned that lesson. We lost Bailey to old age a couple of years ago, but I think she was kept alive for the last year or so by her pure hatred for the dog.

Friday, July 07, 2006

About a month ago, I received a phone call from a polling firm seeking to inquire as to my movie-going habits. The woman asked me how many times I'd gone to the movies over the previous two months, and she literally gasped when I told her zero. After asking whether there was anyone else she could speak to who was a more active movie goer, she hung up. This though is the one movie that may get me out to the theater this summer. Johnny Depp is probably my favorite actor, and I love the character he has created with Captain Jack Sparrow.

Monday, July 03, 2006

The Who are one of my favorite bands, and Quadrophenia is my favorite Who album. I've seen the Who in concert a few times, including 2 years ago at the Hollywood Bowl, and they still rock. Daltrey can still wail - albeit a tad more carefully - and Zak Starkey fills in nicely on drums. Even their two newer songs - Real Good Looking Boy and Old Red Wine were quality, and well received. But the greatest Who concert I have been to was the Quadrophenia tour in 1997 - hearing the album played live from beginning to end was one of the finest concert experiences I have had.