Friday, May 06, 2016

Things To Do In the Rain

I had just barely opened my eyes when the phone rang. It was Charlie. He would be up by 10 to take a look at my old air conditioner and haul the new one inside. I nodded, shrugged, and went back to sleep for another hour.

Charlie didn't show up by 10. He and his men were still making noise downstairs when I was eating breakfast and watching Speedy Gonzales shorts. Though many people still regard him as a stereotype, really, the most offensive thing about his starring vehicles is how formulaic some of them got in later years. I stuck to the earlier ones like "Tortilla Flaps" and "Tabasco Road" that had him going against local cats and crows and two good ones that pit him against Sylvester, "The Pied Piper of Guadalupe" and "Mexican Borders."

Charlie finally put in an appearance around 11:30. I'd just finished vacuuming and was making the bed when I heard the knock on the door. The new air conditioner is as big as the old one, but a lot newer, and hopefully will use far less energy. I have an air conditioner I brought from Wildwood that I only used for one summer before I moved up here. That one will go in my bedroom. Charlie claims he'll put them both in on Monday. We'll see if he actually sticks to that this time.

It had been raining all morning, sometimes hard. It slowed down enough by 12:30 for me to run some quick errands. My first stop was the Oaklyn Library. The weather and the late hour had likely scared everyone off. It was just me, the librarian, one other person, and CNN when I arrived. I only had time to organize DVDs and take a quick look at the kids' area before they got close to closing time and I moved on.

After a fast stop at WaWa to use the ATM machine, I headed down to West Clinton Avenue for lunch and to see if Studio LuLoo was open. Between the weather and it being almost 2 PM, Phillies Phatties was quiet when I was eating my slice of cheese and slice of mushroom pizza and drinking my can of Mountain Dew Pitch Black soda. (And yes, Matt from Dinosaur Dracula, Pitch Black is on the shelves now. I know he loved that stuff when it was originally out a few years ago.) It was so quiet in Phillies Phatties, the TV wasn't even on. Studio LuLoo wasn't any busier. The woman there couldn't stay - she had to bring food for a school party for her daughter.

I was originally going to go to the Acme to do this week's grocery shopping, but the rain was just coming down too hard. I just spent the rest of the evening working on my story. Vader swoops down on Luke, Leia, and the cart, blocking their way to the Dagobah Swamps. An angry Leia and hopeful Luke go up against him, but he easily defeats both, turning the Enchanted Woods itself against them.

Yoda appears in search of his apprentice. He goes up against Vader in a lightsaber duel, but he's weak from the darkness in the Woods. Vader manages to defeat him, too. The evil demon war lord is about to carry off Luke and Leia when he sees Arthur the Blacksmith...and old memories come flooding back. Arthur had once been his good friend, during the days when he was the blacksmith for the Force Knights during the Seven Kingdoms' War. Arthur even taught him his sign language. Torn between old friendships and his master's wishes, Vader finally flies away. Luke and Leia help Yoda into their carriage to get him to the Dagobah Swamps to heal.

I broke for dinner and baking around 5. Made an absolutely delicious dinner of Shrimp In Tomato Sauce with Pasta (replaced the fresh parsley with spinach, since I didn't have any, and the scallions with chopped onion; added mushrooms for more flavor). Tried Chewy Chocolate Cookies from my British cookie baking book for dessert. It's a very simple recipe, just egg whites, cocoa, confectioner's sugar, a little flour, and a little water. Oh yuuuummm. These were the most chocolate-y cookies I ever tasted. They're so rich, you'd never know they're three-fourths egg froth, sugar, and cocoa.

Ran The Three Amigos while I cooked. Martin Short, Chevy Chase, and Steve Martin are the title characters, three silent movie actors in 1913 Hollywood who play Spanish landowners-turned Mexican Robin Hoods on the big screen. After they're fired from their studio, they get a chance to be heroes for real when a small town in Mexico begs for their help with a bandit and his gang who is plaguing their families.

This is an old favorite of mine, another 80's comedy my family fell in love with thanks to constant cable showings. Short, Martin, and Chase are just having so much fun with this love letter to old Western melodramas, it's hard not to enjoy it along with them. Randy Newman's two songs are really cute, too. Highly recommended for fans of the stars, comic Robin Hood tales, or western comedies.

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