Monthly Archives: July 2010

right field

19 July 2010
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I better post about T-ball before the season ends. Henry plays. Rob coaches. Miranda, Arabella and I cheer.


14 July 2010
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I will try to keep this rant small and light. One of the best Agatha Christie novels is Murder on the Orient Express. Okay, you can make your case for And Then There Were None. Or the sparkle of the Miss Marple stories. Are you done? Good. Murder on the Orient Express is genius. And David Suchet playing Poirot is genius. And that is why the Masterpiece Mystery Poirot Series X: Murder on the Orient Express is so upsetting. Disappointing. Infuriating.

When I saw that Poirot was on Sunday, I was delighted. My heart skipped a beat. Orient  Express. Woohoo! Long awaited. By me. If you haven’t read the book, you should. But look away from the rest of this as it will have spoilers.  I watched the movie via DVR with Miranda. And I wanted to explain the story to her. The jumble of characters. The  hidden patterns. And this movie hewed to the book plot far more closely than some of the movies. But the introduction of an adulterous honor killing in the Middle East seemed forced. And was a pain to have to explain. On the upside, she can’t imagine anyone killing someone over their marriage or family honor orreally for any reason. I find that innocence lovely.

And then Poirot defends honor killings as cultural, he has zero compassion for liars and he has not wit or joie de vivre. His “I do not like murder” stance is clear, but Papa Poirot has a twinkle in his eye and mercy in his heart.  In this movie, Poirot seems old. There are so many of the later novels that stress that Poirot is aging and feels old, but Orient Express has never fit that category for me. Orient Express is Poirot as a genius. Agile, able, and in the end, compassionate. In this movie, Poirot is old, rigid, slow. I couldn’t help but think this portrayal will fit Poirot in Curtain, the final novel. And even in that tale, he is more thoughtful.

I know Orient Express will be remade. I am dismayed that David Suchet did not create the definitive work. And Miranda didn’t even really watch the end, turned off buy the darkness. Explaining liking murder mysteries is difficult enough. What a waste.


11 July 2010

I can’t wait for English to catch up with teh Interwebs. In another era I could say I read a magazine or a book or even an article. I started to type I read words. Well, yes, that is what we usually do. Rather than reading numbers. It is so much better when I can patronize myself.

I digress, which would be an awesome name for a blog, I bet. I have read posts and articles and words expressing such love for people’s loved ones. And it made me feel awww in my heart. The secret language of marriage, which I found by way of Sarah Brown‘s guest post at Dooce, which is only worth mentioning because the guests posts have made me very happy. The shorthand of inside jokes and memories is a glue of not just marriage but friendship. And despite knowing that Rob and I have enough shorthand to develop our own sign language, I can’t think of a single example. I was reading words somewhere else , about the sweet things husbands have done for their wives. And I aww’d. And I don’t feel bereft for my lack of examples, I’m more embarrassed  for not writing down / noticing / treasuring the sweet things Rob does do.

Especially if you read Tara Parker Pope in the NYTimes and her divorce book and stats. Scary stuff. The eye roll as the sign  of contempt.*** The idea of creating annual checkups for your marriage. And as much as I get the analogy that we (should) have annual checkups for our bodies. And tune-ups our car. I pause. And my belief in the analogy fails, because who hasn’t felt like they felt fine until the doctor poked and prodded something. Or diagnosed you with PCOS and you go off birth control to see if you’re suffering from infertility. (Let’s say not really) Or that your car was fine as you drove into the 90,000 mile checkup and now they want you to replace the struts. On Rob’s car, the dealer actually told me I shouldn’t drive his car because the struts were so bad. And the independent mechanic couldn’t decide who was nuttier – them or me. Because the muffler was practically dragging on the ground. But the struts? they were fine.

Did I drop the connector thought? Just that if I don’t notice the sweet things, perhaps I am missing the big picture. Or the bad things.

In any case, I have been feeling fuzzy and warm with love. But my memory is weak. I have wondered f that is the key to a long marriage. Poor recall. Ba-dum-dum. No really. Cold Play’s Viva La Vida was on a CD in the minivan, a leftover CD that I’m sure I burned months (years?) ago.  And I like that song. But I can’t sing along to it at all – not as a crititque of my admittedly poor singing voice but because I can’t remember the lyrics. It took me forever to find what song it even was. I could hum it, but that does not enter into Google very well. Viva La Vida is like my love right now.

There are worse things. Right? I hope.

***OK the words are not cooperating. If you’d click that link, you’ll find an WSJ archive story from when TPP worked at the WSJ. And I loved her there and was delighted when she switched to the NYT because the NYT is more freely accessible. Besides the point, Sarah. This contempt in an eye roll story is from 2002. But I have read those words somewhere recently.

hot hot hot

7 July 2010
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Miranda and Henry were in the local fourth of July parade. It was so hot. After  a charming weekend weather-wise, Sunday was hot and humid. I’m glad the kids did not melt. They both rode on floats, Henry for t-ball and Miranda for swimming. I waited at the end of the parade, to allow us to make a good getaway when they were done. My mom saw them much earlier and she thought they were a bit perkier.

Click on any photo to begin the slideshow.

Happy July 5th

5 July 2010
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In the mid afternoon lull, when making dinner sounds like a ludicrous idea, I suggested we go out to dinner. To celebrate July 5th. My mom and Rob heard my suggestion. Liked my suggestion.

A real dive bar, I suggested. Somewhere to congratulate them.

By now, Rob and my mom are no longer on the same page as me. Rob had some good news at work and congratulations for him are in order, but why a bar? How would that make Rob feel loved?

July 5th? I repeat. You know, the smoking ban begins today! Yay!

And not cooking was alluring, but t-ball had to be played tonight at 5:30. It rained, but not enough to cancel the game, not that there was anyone at town hall to cancel it officially in any case.

I guess we’ll have to celebrate another night. I am quite delighted that I can take the kids bowling. Pick whatever wacky hole in the wall my dad thinks we should try for dinner. And yes, if those businesses wanted my business they should have banned smoking voluntarily years ago. Isn’t that the flip side to the let the business owner decide? The customers (me) won’t give you money ($) if you let people smoke by me. And now, I am delighted to have so many more choices. I can start worrying about whether the food is any good. And maybe whether I remember how to bowl.