Saturday, February 20, 2010

2010 Book 6 - The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

I've wrapped up another book. This one, The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley, was a whim purchase as I wandered around Borders Bookstore last weekend. It was on the buy one get another 50% off, which I just couldn't pass up. It was a pretty fluff read, but interesting and cute in a weird sort of way. I can see a little of myself as a child in the narrator, Flavia de Luce, although not nearly as bright, annoying, precocious, or British....

Here is the back of the book write up:
In the summer of 1950 - and at the once-grand mansion of Buckshaw, young Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison, is intrigued by a series of inexplicable events: A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak. Then, hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches his as he takes his dying breath.
For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw. "I wish I could say I was afraid, but I wasn't. Quite the contrary. This was by far the most interesting thing that had ever happened to me in my entire life."
An enthralling mystery, a piercing depiction of class and society, The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie is a wonderfully told tale of deception - and a rich literary delight.

For light reading, I would recommend it. Maybe for those of you headed to the beach this summer grab it and throw it in your bag, if it gets swept out to sea, not a huge loss, but something to chew on while soaking up some sun.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Flashback Friday

This time last year my folks came out to visit me in San Francisco. This is a table in a little Mexican restaurant that we went to for dinner one evening. My dad's hands are on the right, mine are on the left...we hold our hands in a very similar manner...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Parade Plans

This is a conversation I had last night with my sister:

ABBA: You knew that I'm not in DC, right?
Sis: Huh?
ABBA: My trip to DC was canceled.
Sis: Oh yeah, Mom told me that. So you aren't going until the Fall?
ABBA: Nope, going over Easter. I'm going to be there during the Cherry Blossom Festival. I'm going to get tickets and sit in the Grand Stand during the parade. I know, I'm a big dork, but hey, how many people do we know can say they saw the National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade?
Sis: I have on my bucket list that I want to go see the Rose Bowl Parade.
ABBA: I HAVE CONNECTIONS!! I might be able to just make that work for us!!

FYI...connection out there...

Ash Wednesday

Well, I tried my best to have my own little version of Mardi Gras last night, but it really only consisted of me feeding the puppies a second supper and killing 1/2 a half-gallon container of peppermint ice cream. The Queen and I had planned on spending the evening indulging in a gluttonous evening of American Idol and Creme Brulee, but due to the King's injury, she was a unavailable (which is also why the puppies got fed twice as we weren't certain if the King had fed them before he left).

This morning I woke up all ready to do the Lent thing and declare what I'm going to abstain from for the coming weeks until Easter:
  • Ice cream (hence the need to kill the peppermint)
  • Carbonated drinks (therefore, no Dr Pepper and no Sprite....oh and no beer or champagne...)
  • Chocolate (which kicks my morning Chocolate Milk out the window)
Let's hope I can do this...I feel pretty strongly that I can....

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mardi Gras

Today is Mardi Gras, also known as Fat Tuesday. Tomorrow starts the season of Lent in preparation for Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer (through prayer, self-denial, penitence, and alms-giving) for the commemoration of Holy Week and the celebration of Easter. It lasts 4 weeks (44 days), although some religions celebrate only 40 with Sunday being considered a day of non-Lent. This was, I always thought, to represent the 40 days that Christ spent in the desert.

Growing up Catholic we would participate in Lent and I remember as a little kid in our small church in Mississippi that we would get these little cardboard boxes that we would put our coins in to donate to buy rice for the starving children in Africa. I always liked that little church in Mississippi and felt a close connection there. That is where we were living when I thought about becoming Pope.

I've since lost my connection with The Church, but I still try and participate in Lent. I'm not certain what I'm going to give up this year, but I guess I need to make that decision in the next 16 hours or so since I can't have it again for 4 weeks. Who knows, maybe this will be the year that I resurrect my relationship with God...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Mavericks vs. Mavericks

So, at dinner last night I turned to the Queen and said, "I was looking at pictures of Mavericks on line this morning and they were amazing."
The Queen responds, "Oh? What was so amazing?"
Me, "They just were."
The Queen, "Why were you looking at The Mavericks?"
Me, "Because it happened this weekend."
The Queen, "What happened?"
Me, "Mavericks Surf.... Oh, did you mean the Dallas Mavericks?"
The Queen, "Yeah, I was wondering why you would be looking at them. We went out there to the site of the competition when my Dad came to visit us...."

Ah the joy of mis-communication.

Valentine's Dinner = Wild, Wacky Dreams

As you all know, I have very vivid dreams depending on what I have for dinner. Last night was no surprise that I had some interesting dreams occurring because I had an amazingly wonderful meal. If you'd like to see a play by play, you can check out The Queen's blog V-Day Dinner. She has pictures there...and yes, your mouth will water.

On to my dreams, though. As usual, I can't remember the whole dream but only snippets. (I wonder if I am actually remembering the whole dream because do we know if dreams run their course like a movie on a screen from start to finish or are they only brief vignettes?) So, here are the snippets that I remember:
  • It takes place in Casa ABBA as if we are going through the final walk through before signing my life away.
  • There is another couple walking through the house with me, as if they are looking to purchase it.
  • It is complete furnished, as if it is being staged to sell.
  • The man in the couple is Thomas Gibson, who played Greg Montgomery on Dharma and Greg and is now one of the main characters on Criminal Minds. (And just as a side note, I wanted to BE Dharma on that show and that was part of the draw for me to move to San Francisco. Of course once I lived there I realized that I didn't have the personality or the mentality to be Dharma-esque, but that is a whole other issue.)
  • The room that is going to be the guest room was decorated like a baby's room with the strangest decor in that the wall had 100s of bunny rabbit light switches attached to it...very strange.
  • "Scott" who is the builder that I've been talking with at the office was there showing me around, but he was being played by Billy Dee Williams (I have NO idea where that one came from.)
  • And, lastly, the carpet was really, really cushy, which I guess was caused by the fact that when I woke up I realized that I had completely reoriented myself in my bed and my feet were on my pillow...
Since I'd been watching The Godfather prior to dinner, you would have thought that I would have at least had somebody like Al Pacino or Marlon Brando or at the least Robert Duvall in my dream....but nope, I had Billy Dee Williams and bunny rabbit light switches....

But, the meal was great!