Mar 18

No wendigos allowed

Here is today’s podcast. And if you’re hungry before you listen, we’ll either solve that problem or give you some ideas. It seems there’s a new kind of meat that may be making its way into your grocery shopping list. I doubt, very seriously, that it will happen, but it is fun to contemplate, as you will soon see.

I went for a run after work, sneaking in a quick four miles around the neighborhood before our dinner with friends. And I told them about this episode. Everyone agrees it is an unusual one, even the guy sitting at the table next to us.

We were at an upscale fancy kind of place, our friend who suggested it promised the best burgers in town. And that’s always one of those things you should follow up on. Because it would be a shame to not know where the best burger in town is, first of all. Plus, the previously nominated best burger in town was merely pretty decent. There was nothing wrong with it, but we went the one time and haven’t been back in 15 months, for whatever reason.

But this place, maybe we’d go back. The burgers were certainly good, if a bit overpriced. But you’re paying, you see, for the pleasure of sitting quite close to the next table over. And those people are paying for that same privilege. So it only seemed right that I should talk about recording a podcast where we discussed what is called clean human meat.

The guy at the next table was a little put off by this. Probably because I was talking about it. Definitely because I was talking about it with a little volume. Hey, these podcasts don’t publicize themselves, you know.

Anyway, we probably stayed at that places for about three hours, on the strength of burgers and fish. And everyone had a lovely meal and time. Our dinner dates work in the library and the art museum, so they have plenty of interesting things to tell us about. And we decided in the course of all of that that there are movies we all haven’t seen, but should.

How do you know which movies those are? It seems like we’d all need the input of someone else on this. But who knows all of the movies you’ve seen? No one, really. So it is down to self reporting. And so we decided on a methodology — because this is what you do on a Friday night in a college town. After much debate and thought, we figured we would self-nominate five films each from the Oscar nominated Best Screenplay and Best Film categories dating back to 1980. So you have to go over those and find five movies per. Mine were:

Grand Budapest Hotel
Lady Bird
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
The Savages

In The Bedroom
The Theory of Everything
Get Out
The Post

Next, someone is going to gather all of those in a spreadsheet and we’re going to start watching the common overlaps. There will be popcorn and merriment and, I’m sure, endless critiques.

There will be no human meat.

Happy weekend!

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Dec 17

And now a few Twitter notes about different mediums

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Apr 17

An engagement, and a movie

So this happened in the studio the other night:

Tonight: In honor the Little 500 races, which take place tomorrow and Saturday, we are tonight watching Breaking Away.

The Yankee has never seen it. I grew up with this movie. It holds up pretty well, even if the race now seems like the weakest act of the movie.

This part is true. The part where Dave picks up the young woman’s book and chases her down has that nice little chase sequence through the campus (which isn’t shown in a logical linear order, of course). When he turns right, by the greenhouse, he’s going on to 3rd Ave. We drive that road regularly and it also seems a miracle no one gets hurt there on a regular basis.

Hey, look! That’s our building!

Here’s a slightly different perspective of Franklin Hall:

That tree is also not there.

That scene plays a lot different to me now. The whole sequence there is perfectly touching.

We’ll be at the real thing this weekend. The women’s Little 500 is tomorrow and the men’s race is Saturday.

Jan 17

Notions of time

I was going to write more, but the day got away from me. The days all get away from us from time to time, even as we know the days are always going some way or another. That’s the thing about us, we can seize the day, occasionally, if we are so inclined. But we can never grab the day and hold onto it. Not for very long anyway. I assume this has something to do with how our brains perceive time. We’re flowing through it, or it is flowing around us or some thing or another and the net you are holding isn’t woven with small enough mesh. Or some such.

But, hey! I did entirely rework a page on the site you’ll never see! And I found two or three things there that I need to fix. It is an administrative thing and you don’t care at all. I might not, either, but I started it long ago for reasons that probably didn’t make much sense then and probably mean less now. But I have it under control. For a time.

Also, I have added new images to the top and bottoms of the blog, here. As you might have noticed those are rotating images, built with a bit of code that offers the viewer a random image based on numerical sequence. Presently there are 81 headers and 81 footers. They all have varying heights and they are all 900 pixels wide. So I’m staying with this format for a long time, I suppose. I’ve been with this format for a good long while, as well.

I’ve been watching HBO-produced biopics. There was an Lyndon Johnson movie based on a play and then a two-parter on Winston Churchill that I’ve started. They are both interesting and probably have some accurate anecdotes, and they compress years of civics lessons into two-hour capsules. But try as I might, I see Anthony Mackie and Frank Langella rather than Rev. Martin Luther King and Sen. Richard Russell. Bryan Cranston fills out LBJ pretty well.

But I don’t know that you can really portray LBJ’s in a PG environment. The trailer was really good, I felt, so I watched it. The movie was worth seeing if you like political pieces or period pieces. There were a few really quite powerful moments. I think it captured the best parts of the worst parts of a hard, challenging time.

Stephen Root was J. Edgar Hoover. He is great in everything and there’s one little moment he has that nods at all of the things the cinematic audience we’ve learned about Hoover in recent years. Which makes me think of this in much the same way as we do comic book universes. Except, of course, this was real life. The most fake thing was the makeup they put on poor Josh Lyman to try to turn him into Hubert Humphrey. Should have spent more time on that.

I was half-listening to the Churchill story (turns out this is a BBC-HBO co-produced project) when I heard Lena Headey. Nothing takes you out of the 1940s like an accidental Game of Thrones reference. The problem is that these sorts of films always come off as cartoonish, either in a harsh way or in a soft focus, after school special sort of way:

I’ve been running indoors. Someone left the door open and Canada is cooling all of outdoors so we’ve been at the track. The track is a fine three-lane affair. Eight laps to a mile, only slightly better paces. It is made from special grade painful cement designed to hurt old joints, I think. But it looks like this outside:


So it is a trade off. Eighteen miles in the last couple of days. And now it’ll be a few more days before I set off again. Hopefully outside, where my stride is sometimes better.

The nicest part about being inside, after avoiding hypothermia, I mean, is that my running app can’t cope. For the first three miles or so it things I’m running at a world class pace. I am not running at a world class pace. Also, it thinks this is my course:


That is not my course. My app is just going through a modern art phase. It takes no time at all to imagine that is an aggressive effort.

Dec 15

“You ever fought a dinosaur, kid?”

So we’re back at it again. Another late, late night in the newsroom. This was the view when it was still daylight outside. I did make it outside at some point. Some days it is difficult to know for sure, but here is documented evidence:

Sometime I think I should walk around to trees and just start yelling “Quitter!” at them. That wouldn’t be strange. Would that’d be strange? That’d be strange. Right?

A few more photos from the weekend. We ride bikes through here. It looks different at dusk and at different speeds. And it is dark enough and we’re fast enough here and I was maybe just hasty enough that it makes everything look soft and blurry and distant. But look at those colors:

We went to the movies this weekend. We saw Creed, which was emotionally impactful in ways that I wasn’t expecting. And no one saw that happen, either, since The Yankee didn’t glance over at entirely the wrong time or anything. It had nothing to do with an aging Rocky or mortality, but probably had something to do with thinking of Mickey Goldmill. (Did you know there’s a story about Mickey being written? You want this one to make it.)

Walking out of the theater this little girl saw this poster and walked up to it.

“What’s this movie about, Mommy?”

Mom walks over, reaches down for her hand and says “You wouldn’t like it.”

Don’t worry, kid, no one is going to like this one.

This weekend we also learned that Allie likes cupcakes, or at least the paper.