Archive for the ‘television’ Category

Mom’s Day

May 14, 2017

A less stressful (less expensive) brunch this year at Einstein Bagels, followed by a cold swim (kids and polar bears only), then a turkey-burger BBQ dinner.  Note: my 11-year-old granddaughter is taller than I am.

This card is especially funny ’cause my son-in-law bought it for my daughter to give me!

 

 

Seen This Week

A woman checking out books at the library with a triple baby stroller, and three moon-faced, innocent, almost identical babies staring at me.

A male pyrrhuloxia perched on the shelf next to my outdoor table, but I couldn’t take a photo (but you can see one in this blog post: https://notesfromthewest.wordpress.com/2012/10/26/the-vegetarian-coyote/) because…  Tuesday afternoon it drizzled.  Not enough rain to wash off the windows, just enough to convert the covering of desert dust into spots that my camera wants to focus on.

I moved my finch feeder to just outside my bedroom window, and it’s been populated by a rotation of maybe a dozen goldfinches and one rosy finch, which is about twice their size, since I refilled it with Nyjer thistle seed.  I tried a few shots and just got a blur behind the spots on the window. I was sure there’s a setting to remedy that.  Yup – with Manual I got this shot of a goldfinch.

I have (at least) two cute geckos living here, one in my garage (I had to scoot it out of my way to back the car out), another in the storage shed.  Add that to all of the outdoor lizards, and I have quite a few reptiles eating my bugs.  But I am keeping the paper wasp nest in the ceiling corner of my patio.  Am fascinated with those insects.

Someone (mouse?) keeps trying to make a nest in my aforementioned storage shed.  One was composed of dried grasses, another of fallen blossoms from the desert willow.  I keep sweeping them out, but the shed smells of animal.  I even googled do geckos make nests to make sure I wasn’t jeopardizing its reproduction.  (They don’t.)

Took a photo of the clutch of baby quail, all just a bit bigger than acorns, but the camera focused on the welded wire, and they scampered down the slope too fast for me to count.  Somewhere around eight.  Have considered removing the wire from the fence to let in more critters, and just encircling my vegetable garden (harvested some spinach leaves today – leaving the plants to produce more), but it would be a bit of trouble.

Streaming

I have not had a working television since the cable line in the back of my TV was ripped out during my move to South Carolina, which was somewhere around a dozen years ago.  When my daughter moved back to town two years ago she loaned me one of her spare flat-screen TVs as their house came with two televisions bolted to the walls.  (Gave the old behemoth to my handyman, just to get someone to carry it out.)  It’s not smart, however, so I had to get a fire stick just to have it tune into my wifi.

So I do not get actual TV, but my son put me on his Netflix Streaming plan, and now I’m watching way too many series and a few movies, thus melting my mind every evening.

  • Sherlock (with Smaug and Bilbo, which is kind of mind-bending)
  • Untold History of the United States (co-written, directed, and produced by Oliver Stone, starting with WWI)
  • The West Wing (the presidency – way too cheery)
  • House of Cards (the presidency – way too dark)
  • Veep (politics – which is supposed to be funny, but I’m put off with every third word starting with an “f”; had a friend visiting from Australia who kept needling me about Trump, so I thought that this would give me a laugh)
  • The Crown ( a costume drama – the life of Queen Elizabeth II from 1940 to today)
  • Longmire (reminiscent of Tony Hillerman’s Navajo Tribal Police mystery novels, which I got tired of after book two; my son was put off by the cowboy sheriff being played by an Australian actor)
  • Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (magic in 19th century England – mostly silly)
  • Black Mirror (a BBC contemporary reworking of “The Twilight Zone” – each episode is stand-alone, and some are dreadful.  Season 3, Episode 6: “Hated in the Nation” reminded me of Michael Crichton’s book Prey;  but my favorite episode is Season Three Episode 3, “Playtest” – I love the punchline at the end)
  • Cleverman (an American drama that takes place in Australia, with Iain Glen from Game of Thrones, and hints of District 9, where the internment camps were in South Africa – somewhat silly but with roots in Aboriginal mythology)
  • Stranger Things (see my ref in
    https://notesfromthewest.wordpress.com/2016/09/23/humor/ – silly)
  • Zootopia (I loved this Disney animated feature)
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.(silly – a Marvel’s series)
  • Daredevil (also silly – a Marvel character)
  • Captain America: Civil War (“)
  • Luke Cage (“)
  • Jessica Jones (“)
  • Game of Thrones (love this !!!  See this ref:
    https://notesfromthewest.wordpress.com/2016/09/23/humor/)
  • Outlander (“)
  • Father Brown (a BBC series of a crime-solving Catholic Priest – silly)
  • Arrow (as in the Green Arrow – a DC character – silly)
  • Helen Mirrin’s old Prime Suspect (the British series – woman as hard-ass)

Frankly, by this time I’m sick of half a dozen killings a night…

  • Boardwalk Empire (but after five seasons I got tired of Nucky Thompson – how could women fall for Steve Buscemi?)
  • Juana Ines (liked this period drama in Spanish with subtitles but real story of a self-taught scholar, philosopher and poet of the Baroque school, and Hieronymite nun in Mexico City)
  • Grace & Frankie (with Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, whose husbands, Martin Sheen – really?  he’s the West Wing President! – and Sam Waterston, divorce them to marry each other – pretty vacuous, with old-people jokes)
  • The Big Short (movie okay, but liked the book better)
  • The Last Kingdom (how England arose as a nation, with Anglo-Saxons and Danes – with great hairdos and tats – based on the historical fiction novels The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell, which I haven’t read)

Humor

September 23, 2016

barakOn NPR the other day President Barack Obama was doing standup comedy at the White House ceremony for National Medals of the Arts and Humanities recipients.  http://www.politico.com/story/2016/09/obama-arts-humanities-medals-morgan-freeman-terry-gross-228536

hillary
I thought how humorless our two presidential candidates are, but then I remembered Hillary on SNL and Donald on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon:
http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/hillary-clinton-bar-talk/2916002


donaldhttp://www.nbc.com/the-tonight-show/video/donald-trump-interviews-himself-in-the-mirror/2905019

Netflix

I still do not have a working television (since 2006, when I moved to North Carolina and the cable connection was ripped from the back of my old TV), and have subsisted on NPR for the news and DVDs from the library, Netflix, and for those oldies but goodies, Casa Video for entertainment.  Have I missed TV?  Nope.  But when I moved to my present abode I gave the old behemoth (which may have been my mother’s) to my handyman as it was so old that all of the places I called to donate it said nope.  My daughter lent me one of her spare flat screen TVs, which she had thought was smart (and therefore could connect to my WiFi).  But it wasn’t.  So I continue without TV, but with the addition of an Amazon Fire TV Stick, so I can share my son’s Netflix streaming.

I watch the Gray’s Anatomy soap opera with blood, have tried Orange Is the New Black, but didn’t like it, and recently have tried a few of the newer programs that I read about in the NY Times,  Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell and Stranger Things.  Love this Stephen Colbert spoof of Stranger Things: http://www.ew.com/article/2016/09/14/stranger-things-stephen-colbert and another with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show: http://www.ew.com/article/2016/09/01/stranger-things-barb-kids-tonight-show.  Tried American Crime too, but didn’t like that.  Guess I’m too picky.game-2

Would prefer Outlander, but that’s on Starz, and Game of Thrones, but that’s HBO (but can get it from Netflix DVD well after the season is over – releases November 2016).  Those have totally awesome settings: Northern Ireland, Malta, Dubrovnik in Croatia, Morocco and more for Game of Thrones (three shown above), and, for Outlander, 15game-3 game-1locations outlander-1outlander-3in Scotland, and more in Prague and England, doubling for Paris and Versailles (two shown here)

 

 

game-8game-6

game-5Plus those outfits!  A few here from Game of Thrones.


game-9

I think Daenerys Targaryen – Mother of Dragons, with platinum hair – has the best outfits (above left), but her (first) husband, Khal Drogo, had the best makeup.  Some fans really get into it:

‘I turned myself into a Game of Thrones star – now women keep proposing marriage’: Ordinary Joe put on 10lbs of pure muscle to become real-life Khal Drago – and even speaks his LANGUAGE!
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2555818/I-turned-Game-Thrones-star-women-proposing-marriage-Ordinary-Joe-10lbs-pure-muscle-real-life-Khal-Drago-speaks-LANGUAGE.html

outlander-6

 

And a few from Outlander.  Yes, those are supposed to be pierced nipples, on Louis XV’s mistress, Madame Nesle de la Tourelle (bottom left).  Read the text:
http://themuse.jezebel.com/outlander-well-lets-talk-about-those-nipple-piercings-1771565028

outlander-5Outlander Season 2 2016