Archive for the ‘entertainment’ Category


December 25, 2016 Leave a comment

maria-wernWe have been binge watching any number of Swedish and Danish mysteries. It is unlike watching Japanese or Chinese shows. The linguistic tonality of these languages don’t resemble the intonations or cadence of English in the slightest bit. Watching French, German or Spanish films allow me some degree of word recognition and give me a sense of comfort in the language. Swedish and Danish, however, are a whole different story. The cadence and tonality of these languages are close enough to English, yet, are totally incomprehensible to me on any level. I would definitely recognize “smörgåsbord” in Swedish or “goddag” (Good Day) in Danish don’t turn up often enough for me to feel any sense of identification for the dialogue being spoken. For some reason, this unsettles me greatly. I suppose I shall search the world-wide-web and start learning these totally foreign languages, at least enough so that I can watch these amazing shows without trying to find a word I recognize and failing completely.

I do live in Northern Minnesota, after all!


October 8, 2013 Leave a comment

The Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and MurderThe Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder by Charles Graeber

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Spending as many hours in the hospital as I did this past year, this was a strange choice to read. The book is well written and documents the killings of a psychopath nurse who never really understands how his actions wreak havoc. Or, did he?

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September 30, 2013 Leave a comment

The Kitchen DaughterThe Kitchen Daughter by Jael McHenry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a quick read and it could have been because the author has an amazing way of describing everyday things. Like a voice that “sounded exactly like spearmint bubble gum…her voice was…clean and cool, but the laugh was a gum bubble popping.”

The main character is characterized as being on the autism spectrum. She is able to deal with most daily habits and seems to show it when she feels threatened or in dealing with other people. There are some wonderful insights into the behavior of persons who are functional in daily life but still have some of the behaviors that reflect her condition.

A couple of recipes lead her into experiencing the presence of those who have died. They exist when she cooks their dishes and throw information at her that only fits into her reality a little later. It is done in such a fashion that my cynicism simply said “Accept it and move on.”

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September 12, 2013 Leave a comment

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-TimeThe Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Enjoyable, but a little simplistic at times. All of the characters were predictable in their actions and the saving grace was the development of the autistic child’s thought processes.

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September 1, 2013 Leave a comment



Categories: entertainment


July 11, 2011 Leave a comment

Who would ever have expected that a simple change in the pronunciation of a word could bring about such confusion. After moving to Minnesota over 35+ years ago, my first trip through the Upper Peninsula of Michigan would surprise the hell out of me. There were signs saying “PASTIES IN FIVE MILES,” ‘GET YOUR PASTIES IN THREE MILES,’ and ‘YOU CAN’T BEAT OUR PASTIES.”

I moved here from Los Angeles, I knew what pasties were since I had, upon occasion, used them myself. Little did I know that the UP was the producer of such dancing accoutrements.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered they were simply a pocket pie filled with meat and vegetables. I should have known. It turns out that Michigan has more statues of Mary in a Bathtub than any other state in the union.

(By the way, the state motto of Michigan is: “If you want to see a nice peninsula, just look around.” It sounds classier in French.)


July 8, 2011 Leave a comment

There are only a limited number of things one can do when one’s foot is broken. With me being the “one” it precludes doing anything outside requiring more than a trip to the mailbox. So, for some reason, I thought going grocery shopping was a good idea. Called my friend Terri, bribed her with a promise of lunch and we were on our way.

I had never been to Valentini’s before and so that was where we headed. On London Road with a nice view of the lake and air conditioned for the one day it hits 80º in our naturally air conditioned city. I had been craving Peppers and Sausage for a while and had, in fact, pulled up a recipe for it online. And there it was, lunch menu, half order, take me away! It was absolutely wonderful. I tried not to sound like Sally in When Harry Met Sally as I fed myself bite after bite of pure heaven. Simply made with sweet Italian sausage, red, green, and yellow peppers, olive oil, garlic, pesto and fresh basil it was the best Italian food I have had since I last ate in the North End of  Boston.

I managed to save some for dinner tonight since Terri had tipped me off to the deserts. A beautiful lemon cake topped the meal off perfectly. I had planned on saving some of that, also. While waiting for the check, however, I ended up finishing it off. As I raved to the server how good it all was, she recognized me for what I am, a complete food junkie, and pointed out that Cold Stone Creamery had Lemon Poppy Seed Ice Cream available now.

That was the end of grocery shopping. Recognizing that I was too stuffed to go anywhere that had aisles and that there was sufficient food in the house to make it through until Monday, we hit Cold Stone and headed home. After all I had to clean the refrigerator and figure out food to make it to Monday and plop down and moan about how I ate too much.  Really, I can’t recommend this place enough!

Categories: entertainment, food, friend


June 9, 2011 Leave a comment
I will admit it. I have become totally attached to Anna Nicole Smith. It is as if she personifies the ultimate in women’s abuse, misuse and dismissal. I don’t know why I feel so protective of her. And, I don’t know if I want anyone to analyze the situation, either!

This brought her back to the forefront of my mind.

Paw Paw & Lady Love.

It’s an article in the New York Magazine that points out most of the tragedies in her life and yet we seem to be very unforgiving of her. At some point along the line I also saw part of a documentary about her and considering where she came from, she was successful in breaking from a dirt, hard beginning.

Drugs have been the seductive part of Hollywood for a long time. And those that use drugs (parasites) to control or manipulate people have existed just as long. She was a victim of both with more tragedy than many of us could have handled. While she has been described as illiterate, I believe she was just under-educated. And that goes along with under-loved, under-protected, under-appreciated and under-helped which ultimately led to her death and the tragedy that surrounded it.

Categories: entertainment, family, tragedy

I Shall Live and Die by the Love of Books

December 17, 2009 3 comments

The end of the year brings lists of books from every print publication around. “The Best Books of 2009, Books You Should Have Read in 2009, You Are an Idiot if You Didn’t Read These Books in 2009”Ok, I made the last one up. My problem is that the list of books I want to read is far exceeding the number of waking hours I believe I have left in my life. Do I feel a resolution for 2010 coming on? I hereby swear that I will commit 2 to 3 (or more) hours a day reading. This will cut into my Stumble Upon, Bejeweled Blitz and Reality TV addictions, but it is something that I believe will make my life a bit more relative and will help me eliminate books from my collection faster than I collect them. (Yeah, sure.)

Anyway, this started out because of my addiction to Stumble Upon. One of the interests that I listed was, of course, books. So I came across this article from the Guardian . What luck, book lists of what to read and now, a list of books that I have never heard of that I should have read over the past decade.

I suppose I should start searching for them. And them add them to the tilting tower next to the bed. And hopefully complete them before the end of the next decade.

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