Sunday, July 24, 2016

Too Hot to Handle

Started a very hot, hazy morning with Blackberry Spice Pancakes and the Malt Shop Memories Time-Life CD set I picked up last month. I bought this specific one because it had a couple of songs I hadn't heard of before, which doesn't often happen with oldies collections. My favorite of the numbers I didn't recognize was "Just One Look" by Doris Troy. Also liked "Don't Say Nothin' Bad About My Baby" by the Cookies and the original version of "Hey Girl" by Freddie Scott.

Spent the rest of the morning writing. Jabba has turned Han into a hideous sea monster and is keeping him at the center of the maze. The slug insists he's a stupid beast who is supposed to obey his commands and kill the girl who wants his treasure. Han knows there's something wrong, but he's too confused to figure out what.

Meanwhile, Maz the beachcomber witch has been watching all from her shack by the waters. She mixes up a powder to mix with the water that will give Han and Leia much-needed good dreams.

Had a quick Peanut Butter and Jelly for lunch before heading to work. Work was very tiring. I was outside doing carts for almost the entire 4 hours I was there. I did gather baskets a few times, and I changed the trash bags outside towards the end of my shift, but it was mostly carts. We were still busy with Sunday shoppers when I came in. By the time I left, it had slowed down considerably.

There was a kind of scary incident in the early part of my shift. I think what happened was one guy was driving fast and cut the other guy off. Shortly after, two men were standing on the patio, yelling at each other about bad driving and waving their arms. It got to the point where they started shoving each other. A lady told them to knock it off. I reminded them as I gathered carts that, first of all, they were acting like silly little boys in a public parking lot, on a Sunday. Second, there's a police station next-door to Applebee's, and people do have smart phones. The cops arrived seconds after the altercation started. Needless to say, I got out of the Acme as soon as I grabbed my favorite Honey Chex Mix on sale for a dollar.

I went right in the shower when I got home. I needed it badly. I was a sweaty mess after gathering carts for hours. A long cool shower never felt so good.

When I came out, I had leftovers for dinner while listening to one of my oldies records. I forgot I had 1950's Treasures of Love, a collection of rock ballads. "Sea of Love" is my personal favorite here. That was one of the songs Mom used to use in her oldies exercise classes when I was a kid in the late 80's - early 90's, and I still think it's just as romantic today.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Loved By the Sun

I got up earlier than usual on a day off, around 7, to get to the Collingswood Farm Market before it became too hot to do so. I did two travel and summer-themed first season episodes of Sailor Moon as I had breakfast and got organized. A trip to a local amusement park turns into a "Nightmare In Dreamland" when Rei, Usagi, and Ami discover that many people have vanished from the park grounds. Usagi just wants to have fun, but Rei suspects the Negaverse may be involved.

Usagi is feeling those "Cruise Blues" when Rei wins tickets for a romantic cruise and invites Ami instead of her. She stows away, hoping to encounter cute guys in nautical uniforms...but she and Luna make a far more serious find when they discover it's a Negaverse plot.

Headed out to the Farm Market around 9. After looking for a yard sale on Reading in Oaklyn (and failing to find it), I rode down to Collingswood. Considering the temperature was supposed to get into the upper 90's, I didn't expect it to be as busy as it was. I guess I wasn't the only one trying to get their produce as early as possible. The summer harvest is in full swing now. I saw eggplant, beans (including Chinese and cranberry), apples, melons, and peppers for the first time this season. Since I'm not going to be able to get to either Farm Market next week, I stocked up as much as I could. I ended up with a tomato, blueberries, blackberries, Chinese beans, little yellow apples, a lavender-striped eggplant, three cucumbers, a small onion, two zucchini, a small melon, and two ears of corn.

Went straight home after I left Collingswood and went nowhere else today. This was no day to be running around, even if I'd had any major plans. Despite a lovely, cool breeze, the heat was heavy and steamy. It felt like it was wrapping around me like a wet blanket. This was supposed to be the hottest day of the year so far, and while the breeze kept it from feeling as bad as it could have, it sure wasn't overly pleasant.

After I got everything put away, I played Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures for a few hours. I had no problems in "City of Danger." That was mostly running around in (and over) the Cairo marketplace, getting shovels from silly monkeys by tossing them bananas and avoiding the Nazis and local thugs. No sweat.

I had more problems with "The Well of Souls." It's a long level to begin with. I got to the second-to-last room...and realized I didn't have something I needed for it. I got so frustrated, I finally decided I'd figure it out later and turned it off.

Switched to The Backyardigans while having the last leftover turkey burger and making Persian Cucumber Salad for lunch. Tyrone, Tasha, and Pablo "Follow the Feather" to the Polka-Dot Pony in the Tibetian mountains. Uniqua gains "Flower Power" when she touches an unusual bloom and becomes Flower Girl, defender of Garden City. She uses her newfound abilities to fight of the Gloom Meister's (Austin) Gloomsday Machine.

Spent the next couple of hours working on my story. Leia swims through the maze, holding onto Chewbacca's fin, when they're trapped in a low-lying cold-water coral reef. Even after they escape that, they fall into the tentacles of a giant squid. Leia cuts through that, rescuing not only herself and Chewie, but the slave who keeps following her. The slime has been slowly coming off of him...revealing a silent Luke. Leia's delighted to have her brother back with her, even if he can barely talk or remember who she is.

The next part of the maze takes the trio into a deep, dark cave. It's so deep and dark, Leia becomes separated from the other two and gets lost. Not knowing where she is, she decides to settle in and get some sleep. But even as she falls into an uneasy slumber, the second shell on the necklace Maz gave her blinks out, a reminder that she doesn't have much time to fulfill her mission...

Broke around quarter of 5 for dinner and a movie. I wanted to have a decent dinner, for once, after eating out of the fridge all week. Made Skillet Chicken and Tomatoes, one of my favorite quick dishes. It's just chicken breasts marinated in balsamic vinegar and olive oil and spices (it's supposed to be Italian dressing, but I make my own dressings), pan-fried in olive oil, and then cooked with canned diced tomatoes. It's quick, simple, and very tasty. I tossed in brown rice and steamed Chinese beans while the chicken was cooking.

As dinner cooked, I decided to do something I'd been putting off for a while. I organized as many of the random recipes I've gathered (from work, from the tops of whipped topping canisters and the backs of bottled flavoring boxes) into my cooking recipe book. My recipe book is actually a photo album I found at a yard sale a few years ago that came with clippings of retro recipes going back to the 70's. Some of the recipes were too folded or heavy to fit, but I got most of them in.

Ran Legend as I worked and ate. This 1986 fantasy takes us to a mystical land far away. The innocent princess (Mia Sara) is in love with a free-spirited wood's boy named Jack (Tom Cruise). He takes her to see a unicorn, a magical creature. When she wants to touch it, all literal hell breaks loose. Unicorns are sacred - no mortal is supposed to lay a finger on them. Her playful request turns into a nightmare when evil creatures kill one unicorn and capture another for the Devil himself (Tim Curry). While the Devil pursues the Princess, Jack joins a group of elves, fairies, and dwarfs in an attempt to save their land from eternal darkness.

I had a soft spot for this one in the 80's, maybe because I love fairy tales. I thought it was pretty weird then, and it's still strange today. While some of the effects have dated, one thing that hasn't is the amazing makeup work, especially on Curry. The script is silly and the performances range from wooden (Cruise) to over-the-top (Curry), but somehow, it mostly works. I don't think people knew what to make of this in the mid-80's. It's since become something of a cult favorite, especially among fans of fantasy and fairy tales. If you love fantasy, you may want to give this one a look as well.

(Oh, and while I watched the "Director's Cut" with the original Jerry Goldsmith score, I have to admit, the next time I watch this, I may do the theatrical version. I always liked the Tangerine Dream score, especially the appropriately mystical "Loved By the Sun.")

Ironically, just as the world onscreen plunged into darkness and snow, so did the world outside my apartment. It had been on-and-off cloudy as early as noon, and the wind had picked up considerably since this morning. They finally broke around 6-ish...and when it rained, it monsoon-ed. The first one was especially bad, with hail the size of golf balls. The sun finally came out shortly before 7. To my knowledge, it hasn't rained since.

Returned to Lego Indiana Jones after dinner and vanilla ice cream for dessert. To my embarrassment, I looked "The Well of the Souls" round up online and discovered the room I was having problems with wasn't necessary to finish the round. (I did get an "artifact" piece from it.) Escaping the Well was a little simpler, more build-and-jump. "Finding the Ark" was even less difficult. The only real problem I had was with trying to jump from platform to platform. I had to get Indy onto the platform to send Marion over on a rope. First, one kept following the other, and I couldn't always get them where they needed to be. Second, I'm still having a hard time with the jumps. It took me forever to get Marion to a certain spot.

On the other hand, the three levels I did today represent the most beads I've ever gotten in any Lego game. I picked up at least 65,000 from "City of Danger," 90,000 from "Well of Souls," and more than 115,000 from "Finding the Ark." I never did collect much in the way of beads in Lego Star Wars because I kept falling or dying in jumping or flying rounds.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Hot Fun In the Summertime

Started off a sunny morning with breakfast and Kingsmen: The Secret Service. The Kingsmen are a private spy organization with code names based around Arthurian legends. Harry, aka "Galahad" recruits a young street punk named Eggsy (Taron Egerton), to take part in a rigorous spy youth training program. While Eggsy trains with the cream of the upper-crust crop (and deals with their taunts over his lower-class status), Harry tries to convince his superior Arthur (Michael Caine) that the Kingsmen have to keep up with the times. Meanwhile, billionaire software creator Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) has come up with a new microchip that can instantly cause anyone who accesses their smart phones to become a killer. He's implanted microchips into hundreds of world leaders as well...including ones at Kingsman. When their leaders are killed, Eggsy, his fellow trainee Roxy, and their teacher have to infiltrate Valentine's secret lair and stop the genocide from taking place.

2015 was a great year for fun spy movies. This is the fourth spy-themed film I've seen in the past month that I really enjoyed. Kingsman is sort of a blend of Spy and Spectre - a dark comedy that spoofs the more over-the-top aspects of the James Bond movies and other spy-based media. As such, it's occasionally too dark and a bit too violent for everyone. It's not overly bloody, but there's a lot of comic shooting, fist-fights, a full-on brawl, etc. And I had no idea this was originally a comic book, The Secret Service. I love all the obscure comic books that producers have been adapting lately. I didn't know there were so many I'd never heard of. (See also Big Hero 6 and Guardians of the Galaxy.)

For teens on up, if you love the campier tone of the Roger Moore Bond films or some of the stranger action movies of the 80's and 90's, this darkly humorous bit of camp is recommended.

Headed out around quarter of noon for a major errand run at the Audubon Crossings Shopping Center. Stopped at Applebee's for lunch first. Considering it was the lunch hour, they were surprisingly quiet. I only saw a few families and groups of office workers, along with the patrons at the bar. I enjoyed the lunch combo. Had the house salad with bacon, honey crusted chicken fingers, and fries. The honey crusted chicken fingers were a little more crusted than I thought they'd be, but they weren't bad. The fries were divine, hot and salty, with the skins on the ends. (And they tasted good laying in pools of the honey glaze from the chicken, too.) Treated myself to a strawberry lemonade and a brownie bite with vanilla ice cream.

Went to the main mall area next. I needed a few clothes items I couldn't put off anymore. My errand-running sneakers are literally falling apart. That's what I get for buying cheap Champion sneakers from Payless. Found a pair of Easy Spirit running shoes on sale for $29.95 that were exactly what I was looking for. Avenue was also having huge summer sales. The thighs of the work pants I bought at Macy's a little over a month ago have already blown out. I don't like the satin finish or the straight-up-and-down design of the ones I bought today, but at least they're heavier and may last a bit longer.

Didn't have a ton of grocery shopping I needed to do. It was more expensive stuff than lots of it. Restocked tuna, cooking spray, peanut butter, jam (Smuckers was on a good sale - grabbed their Natural Orange Marmalade), honey, milk, eggs, chicken, and cereal (used another Grainberry coupon - got their version of Honey Nut Cheerios this time). They had a rare good sale on Fig Newtons - went with Triple Berry. Raided the clearance spices and flavorings again to stock up on ginger, cloves, and parsley flakes.

My schedule next week is more-or-less the same as this week, only with Wednesday off instead of Saturday and two 9 to 3 days. While this does mean I'll have to miss the Collingswood Farm Market next week, I'll also be able to attend both family functions. My sister Anny is having a double birthday party for her son Skylar (he's 12) and get-well-soon party for Dad-Bill after he goes into chemotherapy (while he can still eat anything) on Wednesday. It's pure luck that I happened to get that day off this week. (In fact, I called Anny while I was at the Acme and told her I was free to go.) Jodie's birthday party for Dad-Bruce is Saturday evening.

I brought everything home, put it all away, then went right back out. Despite the mid-90's heat and heavy humidity, I really needed to get to the Haddon Township Library. I had movies to return. Even Newton River Park seemed to wilt in the heat. The grass is looking brown and brittle, and algae is spreading across the lake like a noxious green cloud. I saw a few devoted fishermen and one walker, and that was it. Didn't even see any Canadian geese.

The Haddon Township Library was fairly busy when I arrived, probably with people looking for things to do while weathering the heat wave this weekend. I mostly stuck to organizing the kids' DVDs. I had no idea if they wanted someone to do the adult titles.

Took out a few movies this week. I didn't get to the 1995 Sabrina last week, so I thought I'd try again. Ant-Man is the only movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe on DVD I haven't seen yet. I'm not generally fond of Elvis movies, but I do have a soft spot for Viva Los Vegas, mainly because Ann-Margaret is a perfect partner for him.

Made one last stop at Dollar Tree on the way home. I picked up birthday cards for Skylar and Dad-Bruce and a get-well-soon card for Dad-Bill. Grabbed water to help with the heat on the ride home as well.

When I got in, I worked on writing for a few hours. Leia has ridden Chewie into a maze of close-together deep-see reefs. Too close. Leia is nearly trapped in them...until Chewie gets scared and crashes a hole through the brush.

Finished out the night with leftovers for dinner and a quick episode of Tiny Toon Adventures. "Toon TV" from the fourth season was their second spoof of MTV and music videos. My favorite shorts this time around were Elmyra's hilarious version of "The Name Game" and Plucky's "Yackety Yak."

Thursday, July 21, 2016

A Little Bit of Faith and A Whole Lot of Hope

Began a clear, sunny day with work. I wish I didn't. We were on and off busy for most of the morning. I did manage to get the carts done when I arrived, but then I got stuck in the register because the manager saw two people on the ends of lines and panicked. And today was inventory day, so I couldn't do returns. I ended up bagging, dusting, and shelving boxes with bags in them. Naturally, when I wanted to go on break, the manager announced "Oh, go get carts, there's no carts out there." She ended up sending out a cashier to help me, or my break would have been a lot more than 40 minutes late. Thankfully, it slowed down considerably after lunch. I did end up in the register one more time, but I was mostly outside with the carts. I treated myself to half-price Acme bakery cookies after I finished and headed home.

When I got home, I changed, turned on the air conditioning, and worked on stories. Leia does finally get Chewie out of the flowers, only to run into the lizard-like bounty hunter Bossk. She, Bossk, and Chewie fight. Leia manages to unleash a pile of rocks on his head and knock him out, enough for she and the dogfish to escape. Meanwhile, Jabba is still watching. Boba Fett wants to take Leia on, but Jabba is sure the next round of traps will do her in.

Broke for dinner around 6:30. I made scrambled eggs with escarole, cheese, and mushrooms for dinner while watching Jack and the Beanstalk. This lively 1967 TV musical features Gene Kelly as the crafty peddler who sells Jack the magic beans. Jack throws the beans out the window...and discovers the next day that they've grown into a huge beanstalk. Jeremy joins him for a trip up the beanstalk and into a castle inhabited by a greedy ogre. Jack tries to get his gold-bearing goose and encourage the mice in the castle to help. Jeremy falls for the beautiful princess who has been bewitched into a harp and tries to rescue her. Very cute live-action animation hybrid from Hanna-Barbara.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Cool Down

Started a late morning with breakfast and more Rick Steves. We move inland from Scandinavia to the Swiss Alps for an episode on Switzerland's picturesque Jungfrau region. It looks like something from out of a fairy tale, with majestic snow-capped mountains, green rolling hills, and lovely little towns filled with cheese makers and one room-schoolhouses.

Headed to work after Rick ended and I got organized. Work was on and off busy. It would quiet down, then we'd get lines for two minutes. I think finally figured out why we've been so busy, far more so than usual for this time of the year. Some folks may be preparing for the Democratic Convention in Philly next month. I have no fondness for politics and completely forgot about that. At any rate, though I did end up in the register three times, I mostly rounded up carts and did returns. It was a nice day for carts. It's still hot, but not nearly as hot or humid as it has been (or as it's supposed to be later this weekend) and nice and sunny, with a cool breeze.

Picked up blue corn chips (the Acme's organic brand is on sale again) and a drink and headed home as soon as I was done. Spent an hour or so writing when I got in. Leia manages to free herself from the flowers. As she fights through the vines and snapping plants, she hears the call of a larger fish. Turns out it's Chewie, who has gotten caught in the tentacles as well. Leia frees him. He manages to mime to her with his fins that he's looking for his friend. They agree to help each other out.

Broke for dinner around 6:30. After I ate, I began Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures. This time, the game started right with the opening to Raiders of the Lost Ark. Yes, including dodging (well, sort of) the famous boulder. After you return to Barrett College, where Indy teaches, you head off to Marion's Tibetan bar. Attacking the Nazi in the bar is a lot more complicated this time. He keeps jumping away! You have to throw bottles and chairs at him to get him. The constant arrival of local thugs makes this a little difficult.

After Marion's burns down, you diverge from the movie canon to explore the Tibetan mountains, including a temple. This was a pain. I couldn't figure out how to build the bridge. It took me forever to realize you need to use the bazooka to blast open the metal crate by the cliff. And then, I didn't realize you had to completely blow up the car on the other side to get any further.

At any rate, next time, Marion and Indy will be meeting Sallah in the Arabian market square and dealing with some very mischievous monkeys.

Oh, and Jodie invited me to their house on the 30th to celebrate Dad's birthday with a barbecue. It's too late to ask for the time off, but their barbecues usually don't start until late afternoon anyway. Hopefully, I'll be able to get over there after work. I need to tell them when I'm going on vacation, anyway.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

She Blinded Me With Science

I awoke late to a beautiful, sunny day. Started out this morning with some Good Eats while I ate breakfast. Blueberries are currently in season, and they're one of my favorite fruits. Alton shows how they make excellent baked goods and syrups for drinks in "Kinda Blue."

Headed out around quarter of noon for today's errand run. First stop was the Oaklyn Library. They were surprisingly busy for a nice day, with several people on the computers, chatting about the Republican Convention talk on CNN. I got fed up with listening to it (and the gossip about it) and left after twenty minutes.

I had other things to do today, anyway. Good thing it was a gorgeous day for a ride up to Haddonfield. It was hot and humid, but not nearly as much as it has been, and the cool wind felt wonderful. I took the long way past the junior high school and down Crystal Lake Road, into Haddonfield's back roads. There was a little bit of traffic on the main highways, but it wasn't really that bad.

I came out next to the Bistro at Haddonfield, which is where I ended up having lunch. Since it was almost 1 by that point, they were very busy. I was too hot for anything but a salad. I tried the Bistro Waldorf. This turned out to be apple chunks in a thick sour cream dressing with Romaine lettuce in raspberry vinaigrette, Craisins, mandarin oranges, and candied walnuts, and a big scoop of chicken salad on top. Not bad. I wish the apples had been mixed in, instead of covered in sour cream, but otherwise, it was pretty tasty.

Explored Inkwood Books, a small bookstore a few blocks away, after I ate. They were surprisingly busy. I guess a lot of people were still on their lunch hour. I looked, but I didn't see anything I wanted.

Got into counseling right on time...which was a moot point. Mrs. Stahl was 10 minutes late. When we got in, we talked about my writing, the trouble at work, my vacation with Lauren next month, and how I so badly want to get out, but don't know how or where I'd go if I did. I've done the same boring, thankless job for 20 years. It's only part time, but it's all I can get. The health insurance is the only reason I'm still there.

I wish I knew how to be myself. I spent a lot of my childhood being driven to this child psychologist and that doctor, in the hope that someone, anyone could figure out why I wasn't getting along with my peers and doing what they did and why I needed to eat so much and gained weight so rapidly. Neither my parents nor the teachers nor the psychologists meant any harm, but it was confusing and frustrating as an 8-year-old. I internalized that nothing I did was ever good enough for anyone, that what I was wasn't good enough, and that being quiet, shy, and weird were the worst possible things anyone could be. It's not that easy to let go of that internalization.

I thought about it as I headed down Haddon Avenue after I left. Though it wasn't as hot, it was still pretty warm, probably in the mid-80's. I needed a treat at Primo's Water Ice. The line was long when I arrived, but it went fast. I got a medium cup of Peach Cheesecake. It was a bit disappointing. It tasted a lot more like cheesecake than it did like peach, and there were no real peach pieces. At least it was nice and cooling.

Went straight home after that via Newton Lake Park. It was a glorious day for a ride in the park. I saw lots of kids out fishing and sunbathing as I went by. Dodged lots of walkers and other bikers, too. The park is at the height of its summer greenery now. The grass is still a little brown, but the trees are vibrant. The water sparkled on the bottle-green lake.

When I got home, I wrote for a little while. I didn't get much further than having Leia hack her way out of the carnivorous sea flowers. I get so easy distracted when I'm writing. I'll look up photos or something for inspiration...and then I'm done for hours.

After I got off, I ate leftovers for dinner while watching Ex Machina. This British sci-fi-thriller takes us to the very modern home of the eccentric owner of a popular internet search engine (Oscar Issac). He's invited Caleb, one of his computer workers (Denhall Gleeson) for a week to test out his newest creation - Ava, a robot that looks, walks, talks, and thinks like a real woman (Alicia Vikander). Ava insists that her creator isn't telling the whole truth about his creations or the blackouts the place is constantly having. Caleb finds himself falling for the beguiling female droid, but looks can be deceiving, and his boss isn't the only one telling lies...

Wow, was this one weird. In some ways, it reminded me a bit of a less showy Blade Runner - a normal guy falls for a robot while dealing with a creep. And, like Blade Runner, it was really far too dark for my taste, including a rather frightening downer ending. Nice performances, though, especially from Vikander as the electronic human who may not be as innocent as she seems.

If you're more into the darker side of sci-fi than I am, this is a tense little tale of robotics run amok that is well worth seeing.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Sudden Summer Storms

It was sunny, hot, and humid outside when I got up this morning. I ran more of the Scandinavian Rick Steves episodes during breakfast. As lovely as modern Oslo is, I enjoyed Rick's trip into the Norwegian countryside and the fjords even more. That's some truly amazing scenery right there.

Did the laundry around 11. I got there at the right time, too. Shortly after I put my load in, people came in and used every other available washer. It was probably just as well that I had a really small load, the smallest I've had in weeks. I was out of there in less than an hour.

When I got in, I put the laundry away, then worked on writing. (I also did some writing later this evening. Lauren takes a self-defense course on Mondays and Wednesdays that runs late.) I doubled back to Leia leaving the cave with the unstable rocks. She emerges in another shipwreck...but she recognizes this one. It was once the Twin Sunset, her brother Luke's vessel. Most of it has been stripped, but thanks to a trick with books and a moving bookshelf, she finds a beautiful sword, knife, and several instruments. She keeps the sword, knife, and a flute, hoping they'll be helpful to her later on.

I had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich really quick for lunch, then rode off to work. Work was very busy, especially during rush hour. I got stuck in the register more than I would have liked. In fact, the manager sent me in for someone when I was about to go on my break, then forgot I was there until I finally saw the lines weren't as bad and finally just shut the register down. The manager also just had to send me out to do carts 20 minutes before my break, when it was obvious to anyone with eyes that there was a storm brewing. I got a rolling cart inside and pulled some up front before I hurried in for my break (that I wasn't going to be able to take anyway). I got in just in time. It started crazy-storming not two or three minutes after I rushed in the door. Thankfully, it was done by the time I was sent out to do carts again.

The clouds were starting to build up, even as I finished work. I hurried home as fast as my legs could take me. Had leftover tuna salad for dinner while watching the last of the Rick Steves Scandinavia episodes. Rick finishes out his tour around Northern Europe with a ride around lovely Stockholm and a cruise to Russia-influenced Helsinki.

Finished out the night by finally finishing off Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga. "Jedi Destiny" was the Luke/Vader duel in the second Death Star. Well, sort of. Actually, you use both Skywalkers to fight Palapatine. This is cool, because for the first time, you get to use the red Sith magic. I did have a few problems figuring out where I was going. Otherwise, this was a fairly simple build-and-solve round.

The finale of Jedi was also the last flying round. The Millennium Falcon first takes down four Imperial Star Destroyers, then has to blast its way into the Death Star's main reactor. Getting to the main reactor was a lot harder than actually destroying it. Getting to it involved retrieving those lavender plasma bombs and trying to blow walls to smithereens while a billion TIE fighters are buzzing around.

At any rate, that's it for the story rounds of Lego Star Wars. I'll more than likely return to see if I can get 100% later in the summer or in the early fall. For now, I'm going to move on to Lego Indiana Jones 1 the next time I do video games.

Oh, and to my knowledge, it hasn't stormed again since 4. It's just looking cloudy, and even that was breaking up when I was on the computer.