Friday, July 25, 2014

Other Blogs ~ Ellen Welty ~ Becoming a Real Rhode Islander: Learning to Clam

Rhode Island Monthly's blog has just added a new feature:

Ellen Welty will try some Rhode Island-specific skills and write about them.

Her first effort is clamming:

Becoming a Real Rhode Islander: Learning to Clam - ridaily blog - July 2014 - Rhode Island

photo via RIDaily blog
I've never been clamming, in Rhode Island or anywhere else, so it's on my list. This post just made me more excited.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

2014 Emmy noms (with commentary)

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Bryan Cranston - Breaking Bad (haven't watched it)
Kevin Spacey - House of Cards  (haven't watched it)
Jon Hamm – Mad Men  (haven't watched it)
Jeff Daniels – The Newsroom
Woody Harrelson - True Detective
Matthew McConaughey – True Detective
I'm rooting for Jeff Daniels, because I like The Newsroom and it's the only nomination for the show. I also like Daniels (but not enough to watch Dumb and Dumberer).

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Michelle Dockery - Downton Abbey
Julianna Margulies - The Good Wife  (haven't watched it)
Claire Danes – Homeland  (haven't watched it)
Robin Wright - House of Cards  (haven't watched it)
Lizzy Caplan – Masters of Sex  (haven't watched it)
Kerry Washington - Scandal
I'm rooting for Kerry Washington. Downton took a downturn last season.
I could give it to Claire Danes, Robin Wright or Lizzy Caplan based on their other bodies of work, too.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie
Chiwetel Ejiofor - Dancing on the Edge  (haven't watched it)
Martin Freeman - Fargo
Billy Bob Thornton – Fargo
Idris Elba - Luther  (haven't watched it)
Mark Ruffalo - The Normal Heart (haven't watched it)
Benedict Cumberbatch – Sherlock: His Last Vow
I'm rooting for Martin Freeman on this one.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie
Jessica Lange – American Horror Story: Coven
Sarah Paulson – American Horror Story: Coven
Helena Bonham Carter – Burton and Taylor (haven't watched it)
Minnie Driver – Return to Zero (haven't watched it)
Kristen Wiig – The Spoils of Babylon (haven't watched it)
Cicely Tyson – The Trip to Bountiful (haven't watched it)
Sarah Paulson was great on Coven this year.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Jim Parsons – The Big Bang Theory
Ricky Gervais – Derek (haven't watched it)
Matt LeBlanc – Episodes (haven't watched it)
Don Cheadle – House of Lies (haven't watched it)
Louis C.K. – Louie (haven't watched it)
William H. Macy – Shameless (haven't watched it)
Oh Sheldon, you beautiful praying mantis. I hope you win.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Lena Dunham – Girls (haven't watched it)
Melissa McCarthy – Mike & Molly (haven't watched it)
Edie Falco – Nurse Jackie (haven't watched it)
Taylor Schilling – Orange is the New Black (haven't watched it)
Amy Poehler – Parks and Recreation
Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Veep (haven't watched it, but I've been meaning to
I'm rooting for Amy Pohler on this one

Outstanding Reality-Competition Program
The Amazing Race  (haven't watched it)
Dancing with the Stars (haven't watched it)
Project Runway (haven't watched it)
So You Think You Can Dance (haven't watched it)
Top Chef (haven't watched it)
The Voice (haven't watched it)
write-in: Food Network Star

Outstanding Variety Series
The Colbert Report
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Jimmy Kimmel Live (haven't watched it)
Real Time with Bill Maher (haven't watched it)
Saturday Night Live
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (haven't watched it)
Daily Show. All day, every day.

Outstanding Miniseries
American Horror Story: Coven
Bonnie & Clyde (haven't watched it)
Luther (haven't watched it)
Treme (haven't watched it)
The White Queen (haven't watched it)

Outstanding Television Movie
Killing Kennedy (haven't watched it)
Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight (haven't watched it)
The Normal Heart (haven't watched it)
Sherlock: His Last Vow
The Trip to Bountiful (haven't watched it)
No strong opinion here.

Outstanding Comedy Series
The Big Bang Theory
Louie (haven't watched it)
Modern Family
Orange is the New Black (haven't watched it)
Silicon Valley (haven't watched it)
Veep (haven't watched it, but meant to)
I do love Modern Family, but The Big Bang heory has my heart.

Outstanding Drama Series
Breaking Bad (haven't watched it)
Downton Abbey
Game of Thrones
House of Cards (haven't watched it)
Mad Men (haven't watched it)
True Detective
Why isn't Game of Thrones on this list 5 times?

Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series
Moira Walley-Beckett – Breaking Bad (haven't watched it)
Vince Gilligan – Breaking Bad (haven't watched it)
David Benioff, D.B. Weiss – Game of Thrones
Beau Willimon – House of Cards (haven't watched it)
Nic Pizzolatto – True Detective
Game of Thrones, naturally.

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series
David Crane, Jeffrey Klarik – Episodes (haven't watched it)
Louis C.K. – Louie (haven't watched it)
Liz Friedman, Jenji Kohan – Orange is the New Black (haven't watched it)
Alec Berg – Silicon Valley (haven't watched it)
Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche, Armando Iannucci – Veep (haven't watched it, but meant to)
Can't make an assessment on this one

Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special
Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk – American Horror Story: Coven
Noah Hawley – Fargo
 Neil Cross – Luther  (haven't watched it)
 Larry Kramer – The Normal Heart  (haven't watched it)
Steven Moffat – Sherlock: His Last Vow
 David Simon, Eric Overmyer – Treme  (haven't watched it)
I'm going to give this one to Fargo too.

Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series
The Colbert Report
The Daily Show with John Stewart
Inside Amy Schumer  (haven't watched it)
Key & Pele  (haven't watched it)
Portlandia  (haven't watched it)
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon  (haven't watched it)
The Daily Show. The writing is sharp, witty and smart.

Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special
The Beatles: The Night That Changed America  (haven't watched it)
Billy Crystal: 700 Sundays  (haven't watched it)
The 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards  (haven't watched it)
Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles  (haven't watched it)
67th Annual Tony Awards  (haven't watched it)
Can't make an assessment

Outstanding Writing for Nonfiction Programming
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown  (haven't watched it)
COSMOS: A SpaceTime Odyssey
JFK (American Experience)  (haven't watched it)
The World Wars  (haven't watched it)
Years of Living Dangerously  (haven't watched it)
COSMOS, by default, but also because it's quite good.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

July 17, 2014

After listening to hour after hour of Pharrell's "Happy" (courtesy of my 18-month-old granddaughter, who is obsessed in the way that only toddlers can be), this parody makes me happy.

Today is apparently the anniversary of the opening of Disney Land. I investigated further and learned:

1. It's the only park created under the direct supervision of Walt Disney
2. The "backstage" areas (where guests are not invited), are painted a dull green to blend with the foliage. Disney Imagineers call it "go away green."

July 11, 2014

There is no conceivable reason this song is stuck in my head this morning.

Sometimes life is just random.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Frozen as Game of Thrones Mashup Trailer

July 9, 2014

Today's Tarot: The 3 of Pentacles/Coins:
A young man explains his work to two older, more experienced builders, who hold plans in their hands.

3s stand for the completion of a first phase of a plan. It's a card of encouragement and satisfaction. Of a job well begun. Also of the potential for wisdom in younger persons. It may indicate that you need help or someone with more experience to help you finish your project.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

July 8, 2014

Remembered to draw a Tarot card today: The Hanged Man
A man hangs upside down by one foot from a T-shaped bar.

The Hanged Man is about patience, contemplation and sacrificed. Don't try to control the present situation. Just go with the flow, observe your environment and try to take a different perspective. A sacrifice may be required, or a change is at hand.

Interestingly, my horoscope today mentioned a big change, and going with the flow rather than trying to control events or stick to a schedule.

Monday, July 07, 2014

July 7, 2014

Yesterday was tough. After days of telling my daughter how welcoming and inclusive our church is, we arrived barely in time for the service, to discover that there was no one staffing the nursery.  She could bring the little ones into the service, or she could stay with them in the nursery and listen to the service via a speaker that was there. She chose instead to be offended that there was no staff in the nursery, and was rudely insistent that we leave immediately.She wanted to be able to attend the service without distraction.

I understand her frustration. She'd been really looking forward to going to church all week. I know she's tired and stressed, and this would have been an hour respite for her to commune with God, hear a sermon and be part of a community beyond her two small children. Had she not been so quick on the trigger, I would have taken the children into the nursery for her.

To add to my own embarrassment, the person she dealt with was not only a member of a church, but works in Bear's school. I see this woman a lot.

I could barely speak to my daughter on the ride home from church.

To her credit, my daughter did write a letter to the pastor, outlining her position and apologizing for overreacting. She apologized to me, too.

The rest of the day went pretty smoothly. It was beautiful and we spent some time outdoors. The Bee and I blew bubbles. We had a nice dinner. I gamed for the first time in weeks. It was sporadic and interrupted, but I did get to converse and touch base with friends.

Today is the festival of San Fermin in Spain. It's marked by the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona. Today I'm realizing the growth of my awareness of this tradition. When I first heard of it in middle school, I thought it was kind of stupid. What kind of idiot lets a herd of rampaging bulls chase them through narrow, winding streets?

As I got a little older, I thought of it as badass. Yeah, I wanted to run with the bulls. I wasn't going to get gored or trampled. I might not have been faster, but I was smarter than some stupid bulls.

I went through a traditional phase. I briefly thought that, since it's a tradition, it was kind of romantic.

Now I struggle with the tradition. It's cruel to the bulls and dangerous to the people. Surely there's a better way to celebrate.

Art of the day: 
This is the head of a man, done in ivory and Egyptian blue. It's in the Phoenician style, from the Neo-Assyrian period, and from Mesopotamia. Which really doesn't tell us much. But it's elegant work.

Day 7: What I did today
I usually write about this stuff the morning after. That's just when I have time, and I've had a chance to put the day in perspective.

I spent the day in the office, as usual. The three-day weekend made going back to work feel unnatural, but it was a welcome change to get back into a routine.

Forgot to bring fresh milk for my Cheerios, but I did remember to bring the breakfast blend trail mix that I like, so breakfast wasn't a loss. Having M at home means she does the lion's share of the cooking, which means we have leftovers for lunch, which means I'm saving money on buying lunches. Bonus.

After work it's to the bank and grocery store. I think that'll be plenty.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

July 5, 2014

Day 5 -- Favorite Quote
I get asked this a lot, and it hasn't changed:
"What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty! In form and moving how express and admirable! In action how like an Angel! in apprehension how like a god! The beauty of the world! The paragon of animals!" ~ Hamlet, Act II Scene 2


Hurricane Arthur made a cool and soggy 4th of July. A couple of smaller dead branches fell in the back yard, but nothing of significance. Just lots of rain, and some postponed fireworks. The Bee (18 month old) went out onto the porch with me to splash in some puddles, and promptly slipped on the kitchen floor when she went back inside. Four times. She's a quick little Bee. This morning we went to the Farmer's Market and got some fresh snap peas (yum!) and cranberry/pecan chevre (extra yum!). Learn something new:

I've been seeing a dragonfly that looks like this the last few days in our yard. I wasn't even sure it was a dragonfly until I checked online. This photo was taken in the Blackstone Valley area of Rhode Island. It's described as a double winged blue dragonfly, though I don't know it's technical name. I do know that when it flies, the wings move so fast that the black squares look like cubes. Very curious.

Thursday, July 03, 2014

July 2, 2014

I'll join in the July journaling challenge. Not sure how I missed this, but I just found it on One Gal's Musings. It seems that, for the moment, this blog has tourned into a kind of journal.

Day 2 -- Dreams and Goals

For the most part, I'm living my dream. I'm in a house I love, with good neighbors and friends. I'm self-supporting. I'm in good health. My family are all safe and healthy.

My goals are to quit smoking (again), help my daughter, son in law and their children to get settled in a new place and to have the house to myself again. It had been my goal to go to Block Island this summer, but I may have to forgo that one in favor of more family-oriented ones.


Learn something new:
My son in law's new job is literally making the donuts for Dunkin' Donuts. Which are made in a kind of factory and then sent for final baking at the stores.