Sunday, September 27, 2020

Make him an offer he can't refuse...

Pic of the Week

Rooftop chill with a friend.  What a view.

What's going on?

I watched The Social Dilemma (highly recommend) and decided to take a break from Facebook for a minute.  I logged out on all my devices and honestly didn't really miss it.  I logged back in to check something one day and could feel my blood pressure rising within about 2 minutes, so I think I won't be checking in there much moving forward, and definitely not before the election is over.  It's too contentious with no reason.  Ya know? 

I have quite a load of tutoring students these days.  About half of them are in-person, but the company I work for has put safety guidelines in place, so if families decide to do in-person tutoring, it has to be in a shaded outdoor space and both the students and tutors are required to wear masks.  It's actually quite nice and the families I tutor for have some amazing views in their backyards.

I went to the hardware store this week to pick up some pliers so I could switch out my very old shower head, and while I was there decided to pick up a pot for a plant, but the garden center didn't have any terra cotta pots.  None.  What?  That's right.  NONE.  So weird.  Also, an animal of some kind had pooped in a tray of ground cover.  What a trip to the store.

This week in jobs I'd never imagine having - I went to an observation for what amounts to an extension of my standardized patient job, it's just that these exams are more invasive - teaching students how to give a proper testicular and prostate exam.  Such fun!  Pay's good though.

What I'm reading

Lots of moving tribues to RGB (while also fuming at the blatant hypocrisy of the Republican party in fast-tracking a replacement.  And I just keep thinking, "Hey Christians, ya know who Jesus didn't have any words for?  Gay people.  You know who he had a lot of words for?  Rich people and hypocrites." *sigh*)

What I'm watching

My roomies made a plan to watch this one as they'd never seen it, so I joined them.  I saw this one a few years ago, but didn't actually remember a lot about it.  Interesting film.  We also looked up lots of fun trivia about it.  For example, Marlon Brando wanted Don Corleone to look like a bulldog, so he stuffed his cheeks with cotton wool for his audition and then during filming he wore a mouthpiece that is now on display at a museum in Queens.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Smoky eyes

Pic of the Week

Battle wounds from a fairly epic meltdown of a 7-yr-old this week.  Comes with the territory, I suppose.

What's going on?

We can breathe! Air quality seems to be back to normal.  I was in Utah over the weekend missed the worst of it, but there were still a couple of smoky days when I got back.  Glad things are clearing up.

Been a pretty normal week. Work, food, new cat in the apartment (not mine, but he's pretty cute).  Not doing much other than that these days what with the Pandemic and all.

Terribly saddened by the news of RGB's passing.  Her life and legacy are truly inspiring. 

This week's post is pretty light.  Not a lot going on around here.  

What I'm reading

This is a troubling look at history from the viewpoint of the people who were marginalized, enslaved, massacred, etc.  Important stuff to know, though.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Audiobooks on road trips

Pic of the Week

Stopped for lunch in Barstow and the Arby's was only open for drive-through orders, so I had to go to the gas station next door to use the bathroom.  This was on the bathroom door and made me laugh.

What's going on?

Happy Labor Day!!!  I was going to go hiking, but when I arrived at the trail head a somewhat surly park ranger informed me that all of the trails in the area were closed due to the heat (it was, like, 80 degrees that day, but had been in the triple digits over the weekend).  Any other hike would have been at least an hour drive away and not guaranteed to be open, so I went home and washed my car instead. 

Not much else going on this week.  Work, farmer's market, getting back into an exercise routine, etc. I drove to Utah this weekend for a niece's baptism and had a grand old time.  It was really nice to get out of LA since the entire west coast is currently under a dark cloud of ash and smoke.  Not looking forward to driving back into that.  Looks like it should clear up a bit by Wednesday, though.

I got my hair cut while in Utah. (Thanks Brianna!).  My hair's been growing out for about a year and a half and it just felt like time to go short again.  Changes all around.

What I'm watching

Apparently there's some controversy around this one. The lead actress, Liu Yifei, apparently supports police brutality and oppression in Hong Kong.  Part of the film was also filmed in the region of China where the government is detaining and oppressing ethnic Muslims.  So, not great PR for this film.  But I watched it before I knew all of that.  I've heard some mixed things about the movie, but overall I really enjoyed it.  

What I'm reading

A look at mass incarceration in America.  It seems like if you read this and aren't completely infuriated, you need to check yourself and read it again.

Also saw this gem on Facebook and thought it was quite thought-provoking:

My kids are watching "Les Miserables" tonight and I can't help but think there are a lot of people who love this story and would absolutely hate everything about it if it were set in modern day.
A convict imprisoned for minor theft highlights the plight of the poor and the inequities of the justice system. A single-minded police officer whose insistence on the letter of the law creates injustice.
An impoverished woman whose #metoo moment ends with her disbelieved, cast away from society, further impoverished and forced into prostitution, where she is taken advantage of and ultimately wrung out until dead by upper class johns and the justice system.
These injustices lead to an ultimately failed riot by young people, that is nevertheless held up as an exemplar of the Kingdom of God that is coming.
Even the minor villains are small business owners who are working hard to achieve riches at the expense of the people around them.
And in all of this, the heroes, the only people who provide any help to one another:
* An ex-convict on the run from the law
* a lying churchman who extends grace
* a young rioter
* a prostitute and her child
* a homeless child (also murdered by state violence)
All of this in an unapologetically spiritual, inherently Christian story in which every prayer is answered save one: Javert's prayer that the convict be placed behind bars again.
And the thief is not transformed by prison, which makes him only more desperate, more dangerous. He is not transformed by justice. He becomes a better man, a functioning part of society because of mercy, and because he is invited into the community of faith. Love, faith, kindness, mercy. Justice and rule of law bring only injustice and death in this story.
I wonder in that world if each of us would be cast in the role of villain or hero. Food for thought.

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Am I nesting?

Pic of the Week

Teaching the kid I nanny how to do boondoggle.  The tradition continues.

What's going on?

I am officially moved in to a new apartment!  And I'm thrilled about it.  My room is cozy, my roommates are chill, and my kitchen is huge.  Also I have a bathtub now.  Albeit a tiny one.
Honestly, this week has been all about settling in.  Unpacking, organizing, hanging stuff on the walls, finding places for all my crap, cleaning, cooking, and enjoying the new digs. It's been nice to have a project to occupy my hours and keep me busy.  I'm basically done, so now it's just time to sit back and enjoy.

What I'm watching

Some language in this one, but the writing and the acting are incredible.  I'm not a huge Reese Witherspoon fan in general, but I think she's great in this.  

What I'm cooking

Peaches and Cream Puff Pastries.  My good friend Tara sent me these on Instagram and I decided to go for it.  I was NOT disappointed.  They turned out so tasty, and they were very easy to make.  Highly recommend.