Cloister Commentary, Day 344: Saturday Checklist

Got lost in the shadowy world of John Carré’s The Spy Who Came in from the Cold.

Dropped by the Columbia Farmers Market for our Pasta La Fata order of Sicilian “green balls,” fresh spaghetti, and lasagna.

Took a three-mile neighborhood walk-n-talk with Nicole, returning to find our outdoor cat-sentry Beebs up on the roof.

Drank two WellBeing Brewing Victory Wheats and slapped together a rough draft of a two-CD “History of Daniel Dumile” comp I’ll be sending to my long-time pal Josh Slates.

After dinner, surfed Turner Classic Movies On Demand and settled on a revisiting of Hitchcock’s classic Shadow of a Doubt. Interesting who the most interesting characters are, as always with Hitch!

Streaming for Strivers:

For Jimbo on Tybee Island!

Cloister Commentary, Day 316: Shawn, Out of the Blue

I was sitting at the table having coffee when, out of the blue, my friend from childhood, Shawn Baugh, lit up my phone. His first question? “What do you think of this political situation?” These days, such a query via telecom might cause one to have a sudden outage, but we’ve known each other for almost 50 years, so we pitched right in. We would seem to be on opposite ends of the political spectrum, but as our highly enjoyable discussion revealed, we have much in common regarding what we’d like to see fixed. We also laughed a lot about the absurdities of life, found ourselves remembering the world of our youth, and pondered our future road as oldsters. Neither of us are entirely sure we are excited to see what happens during the next 25 years, but this quote from Shawn sums up both our attitudes: “I love life.” He always has! And so have I, and I’m going to pursue measures to sustain that philosophy. That call was a great boost for my day.

Elsewhere, Nicole and I drove to the Columbia Farmers Market and picked up our usual weekend haul from Pasta La Fata, Uprise Bakery, and Happy Hollow Farm. I as usual picked the wrong basketball games to half-watch (Tide v. Sooners, Auburn v. Baylor) and mopped up a basement leak; Nicole made red beans and rice and some stir-fry to go with the smoked sockeye salmon we ordered from Sea Bear–I could almost have eaten the whole filet!

Movie Night: we finally watched Netflix’s adaptation of Aravind Adiga’s Horatio Alger-goes-to-India / Bildungsroman from Hell novel The White Tiger. The director is Rahmin Bahraini, one of our top five faves. Nicole’s side-eye review: “This is intense.”

Streaming for Strivers:

Mmmm…Goldie’s Bagels!

Cloister Commentary, Day 31: The Good, The Bad, and The Good

The good?

Laughing our butts off at Randy Newman and his wife on CBS Sunday Morning (sheltering in place is bringing them spatial and motivational challenges).

Mixing a couple of tequila sunrises, cranking up the 2-CD Dead Moon compilation ECHOES OF THE PAST, and realizing we were fortunate enough to see the Coles play seven times, and get to know them. They have always been an inspiration to us.

A Zoom session with my parents Ron and Jane and my brother Brian and his gal Myra. We got caught up and enjoyed some great views of Dad’s belly (low-angle camera work). My mom is busy making masks for friends and my dad is out in the shop a lot. (See pic in comments.)

Mom and Dad

Nicole’s lasagna, made with fresh spinach from the Columbia Farmer’s Market–their operation is a model for these times. And doesn’t lasagna taste even better the second day?

Relaxing with a book, some music, and the windows open, and enjoying a beer on the front landing with our cat Tuxalini.


The not-so-good?

Neighbors. A neighbor of ours already had three dogs they insufficiently controlled, and they recently added a NEW dog and a cat that had not been spayed and now appears pregnant. Yesterday, they gathered in their driveway with (at least) four friends for almost two hours, definitely not practicing social distancing, sharing smokes–and allowing the new dog to run freely in the street (stopping traffic twice) and over into our yard multiple times, though IT HAD A LEASH ON THAT WAS APPARENTLY DECORATIVE. Upon the dog’s last foray, Nicole stepped out and asked them politely to keep their dog in their yard. Response: “I’ll do whatever I want.” Animal Control does not operate on Sunday; a heads-up to the authorities went unaddressed. That unnerved us for the rest of the evening. It is really difficult, sometimes, to sit with things you can’t control. We will get better at it, but Animal Control is now on speed dial.

The good–on the rebound?

Tyler Keith of Oxford, Mississippi, is one of the States’ last dyed-in-the-wool rock and rollers. In the Nineties, he led The Neckbones, which were what the first version of The Heartbreakers (with Johnny Thunders and Richard Hell in tow) would have sounded like if they had been from The Deep South. But Tyler, solo and with his various bands (The Preacher’s Kids, The Apostles), has continued to make barbed-wire, hard-hitting music that’s continued the Southern tradition, most vividly exemplified by Jerry Lee Lewis, of watching the sunrise with God and closing down the bar with Satan. He performed a Facebook live concert last night to celebrate the release of his new album (see below), and that rescued the day for us, in a way. By the way, the album is great.

Streaming for Shut-Ins:

This album has always done us good. Perhaps it will do the same for you!