November 2010

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Happy Saturday!

How are you?  Enjoying fall?  It’s been a pretty terrific one here,so far, lots of dry days and beautiful evenings, with enough rain to keep it interesting and moist.  “The night was moist.”  Do you remember that from Throw Momma from the Train?  I love that movie.  Danny DeVito, you are wack-a-doodle and make me laugh.

So, to happenings as of late. Thank you, thank you, thank you for your lovely comments and support during my campaign to be a guest on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.  You guys are beyond terrific.  Truly.  As for Mr. Fallon, he isn’t banging down my door, but it’s out there, as they say, and I just feel in my bones that something marvelous will come of it all.  Indeed I do.  If anything, I certainly have a great appreciation for anyone who writes and directs.  Those one minute films take a lot of effort!

The first four photos, as you are likely to have surmised, are from Halloween (if not, maybe you should put down that cocktail!).  The hubster is, you guessed it, a crow!  Aren’t his wings lovely?  I am water and definitely drawn to the abstract.  We had a grand time at our friends Satan (Stan the Insurance Man) and the Bar Wench’s party.  There were many fine costumes, yummy drinks, and good food, like sausages wrapped in Pillsbury croissant dough.  I kid you not, those are the height of splendor in party fare!  I ate more than my fair share.

We also spent a lovely rooftop evening at a fund raiser for one of our new favorite places, Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center.  There was an awesome band called Stumbleweed (traditional bluegrass for all your high lonesome needs), cocktails served up from the stellar and local House Spirits (the Bees Knees!), and lots of delicious food prepared by Opal Creek’s uber-chef Rebekah.  Not surprisingly, we met some very fine folks just as interested in keeping this gem of a place intact for the ages, including the architect for the rather deluxe and tallest building in the the blurry photo below.  How cool to be engaged in conversation and ask, “Would I know any of your work?” and have her grin and say, “Well, yes, that building right there.”  Huzzah!

Finally, a little update on the Subaru.  After some reflection, we’ve decided to donate it to charity.  The hubster is a happy bicycle commuter three days a week, rain or shine, and we just don’t need it.  Besides, the Portland Rescue Mission has what looks like a pretty terrific program that trains people to work on cars like ours before selling them to benefit their charity.  It’s a pretty sweet deal all around.  I am even slightly grateful to the thug who stole our car for bringing this about.  Life is pretty sweet.

Be well!

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Oh, John Le Carre, you are good, very, very good.  I am terribly sorry that this program doesn’t let me make accent marks, for it is not a lack of caring that your name is unadorned.  You are a stellar writer, and I wish I could give you your due by spelling your name properly.  I should also add that I love making accent marks.  Besides, after twelve years of French, I know when they are necessary.  When to use the plus-que-parfait, well don’t ask.  I was always better at accents, by voice or a pen.

Anyhoo, to dear George Smiley, the ne-plus-ultra (more Francais!) spy of spies, you are the cat’s pajamas.  Another aside here, did you know that this has nothing to do with felines sporting flannel?  Rather, it was in reference to a tailor in the 1700s, named Katz who made the finest clothes in the land.  Fancy that!  As for George in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, after being forced into early retirement, he is called back into service on an uber top secret mission to discover the identity of a very high ranking mole in the British service, one planted by his Russian counterpart Karla decades earlier.  In Smiley’s People, George is called reluctantly into service, yet again, with the murder of an old friend and a mystery that may lead him straight to his arch nemesis, Karla.  Beat of drums!

Rather unlike the films I associate with spies, even ones I like (Jason Bourne, anyone?), and the reason I hadn’t thought to read the books before, the story is utterly lacking in flash.  There are no violent car chases, spies with super powers, or romantic liaisons among the rock hard ab crowd.  Quite the contrary, they cough from too many cigarettes, have grey hair, paunches, and failing marriages.  Where they do not fail is in their utter brilliance, patience, and attention to detail.  These are the men and women I want on my side in a crisis.  They are extremely dedicated to the service (save one) and work long hours in hardly glamorous conditions to meet that end.

Not to say that the lack of glamor makes the writing any less engaging.  John Le Carre is a fine storyteller, and his characters feel as real as the cat sitting on my lap.  I could not put these books down, using any excuse to sit and read a page or two or thirty.  Highly recommended!

Should you decide to forgo reading the stories, the BBC versions are terrific and available on Netflix, though Smiley’s People is easier to follow than Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (like the book, there are many details, characters, and time shifts – be patient and pay attention).  The hubster and I saw Smiley’s People a couple of years before I decided to read the novels, so even without the benefit of knowing the story, I found it no less exciting or interesting.  As well, it gave me the picture of Alec Guinness as George, for which I am ever so grateful.  Those glasses, that voice!


Holding On

Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.

George S. Patton

My sincerest thanks and admiration to Veterans and their families.


Dreaming is a world where wishes do not exist ; because dreaming is a world where our wishes are fulfilled just by the fact of imagining them so.

Yannick Heywang

Hello Everyone!  Hello Jimmy!

Welcome to the the final week of my campaign to be a guest on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.  I hope you enjoy the video.

Also, if you are so inclined, and I certainly hope that you are – lend me your support!  Leave a comment here on the blog, send Jimmy a Tweet (@jimmyfallon), or leave him a message on the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Facebook page stating my guest worthiness.  I’d sure appreciate it!

Oh, and please, please, please vote in your local elections.  Our voices, in no small part, are what make this democracy great!


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