Monday, August 10, 2020

Clean Sweep at the Riverside

Slept in today and didn't get rolling until past 10:30. Blockbusters was half-way done when I started breakfast. The look-a-like brothers keep winning the regular round, but they choke up on the Gold Rush. I think they only got two answers. They weren't doing much better with a young woman when the episode ended.

Since I had no plans for today, I figured I'd do my first monthly apartment cleaning, starting with the windows. In fact, one of the big reasons I wanted to clean today was I discovered while closing the curtains in the bedroom last night that the small square panels that make up the front window felt sandpapery to the touch. I thought Jodie said she cleaned before I moved in! Maybe she never got to the windows. Scrubbed them down with Pine-Sol, then wiped them with cleaning vinegar to get them sparkling. The windows in the living room were a little dirty, especially on the top halves, but not quite that bad. They came clean easily with ordinary Windex.

Watched Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood while I worked. It's "Clean Up Time" when Daniel and O the Owl make a mess in the living room, and then in the bedroom and he has to find his watch. King Friday holds a "Neighborhood Clean Up" after a storm leaves debris all over the playground. Katrina refuses to help, until she realizes just how messy the playground is.

Heard a hedge trimmer going outside that was awful close to the apartment. Stuck my head out the door and saw Craig trimming the edges of the cobblestone path. He'd agreed to do yard work for Jodie while she was visiting friends out of town. Asked him if I could borrow his and Rose's vacuum cleaner. I was going to borrow Jodie's, but she's so odd about sharing, I'm not sure she'd loan it to me. He said it was fine and went home to get it.

While he went to get the vacuum cleaner, I started cleaning in the bathroom. Scrubbed the bathtub first. As I mentioned yesterday, it's long and high, but not wide. Nor was it terribly grungy. I was only here for half of last month.

Craig returned as I was in the bathroom. The vacuum he brought was one of those new slender models, but it was very top-heavy and hard to move. I did manage to get it under the futon on the rug in the living room and around the bed on the striped one in the bedroom, and even took it over the wooden floorboards. (He picked it up a half-hour later.)

(He also brought me a metal box filled with mint plants. I'll have to find a place for them and figure out what to do with it all.)

Switched to Muppet Babies next. Fozzie's excited about the idea of the Babies holding their first slumber party...until he actually realizes he'll have to spend the night away from his mother and his cozy bed. "Rock-a-Bye Fozzie" tries to join the others, but he's too scared by Piggy's haunted cookie jar story to have fun. Nanny assures him that he'll be ready for a slumber party someday. The kids have to clean up their own messes in "Gonzo's Clean Sweep." Gonzo wants to set up a complicated stunt and convinces the others to do his work for him...then finally pitches in when he realizes they won't be ready in time to have snacks.

Moved into the kitchen next. The kitchen itself was easy peasy. Everything just needed to be wiped down with Pine Sol, including the sink and counter tops. Dusted the top of the refrigerator and around the cabinets.

Watched Portrait of Jennie while I worked. Eben Adams (Joseph Cotten) is a painter in New York who isn't as successful selling landscapes as he'd like to be. On a winter's afternoon, he meets an odd little girl (Jennifer Jones) wearing clothing from the turn of the century. She calls herself Jennie Appleton and insists her parents are vaudevillians at Hammerstein's Victoria Theatre, even though it was long closed and torn down by 1948. Eben is fascinated by the girl and does a sketch from memory later. Miss Spinney (Ethel Barrymore), a wealthy art dealer, sees a great deal of promise in him and the sketch and says he should paint her portrait, rather than the landscapes he'd previously focused on.

He sees Jennie several more times. Every time, she's a little bit older and mentions events that are slightly more recent. Obsessed with her after he finally gets to painting her portrait, he follows a trail through several elderly people in New York who remembered her, including her favorite teacher, kindly Sister Mary Mercy (Lillian Gish). She turns up one more time as a grown woman, claiming she'll see him again after she goes away for the summer. It's Sister Mary who reveals that Jennie was never seen again after she left for that trip to Cape Cod. Eben finally leaves for New England, determined to find out what happened to Jennie and how he's able to see and hold her.

This was such a sweet movie. I need to find the book it's based on, too. Producer David O. Selznick went all-out on this one, filming in the real New York and Cape Cod to add authenticity. He even added green and red tints to the climatic storm and filmed the unveiling of Jennie's full portrait in Technicolor. Jones and Cotten were haunting as the lovers separated by time and space; Albert Sharpe and David Wayne were a lot of fun as Eben's Irish buddies at his local pub. If you love unique fantasy or a good bittersweet romance, you'll want to take time out for this one.

Finally finished the bathroom as I ran Good Eats: Reloaded on The Cooking Channel app. The walls in the bathtub were vinyl rather than ceramic tiles. It and the sink and counter also only required wiping with Pine-Sol. I'll scrub the tiled floor another time. I don't think my elbow is quite up to that yet.

"The Dough Also Rises" discusses a quick bread that's near and dear to my heart - biscuits. My mother is a native southerner, and we could count on fresh biscuits on the table at least once a week in the winter months. Alton recalls how he and his late great-grandmother Ma Mee each had their own method of assembling the dough and their own temperature they liked for baking it. I'd make biscuits more often myself if they kept better. As my mother reminded us when we were children, they don't taste as good the next day.

Moved on to Tattletales as I had a chocolate-strawberry-banana smoothie for lunch. Don Galloway and his wife Janet were just barely the big winners today over Jimmie and Samantha. They got all the questions right but one and were really funny with each other, with their matching dry, sarcastic sense of humor. It was a battle between the ladies on Press Your Luck. It took hitting the car on her last turn for one of those ladies to beat the other and become the new champ.

Started dusting after lunch. I'm not going to do really heavy dusting right now. I had a hard enough time getting the books on the shelves with my bad arm when I moved, let alone just to dust under them. It didn't take long to dust around things. Besides the apartment being smaller, I don't own as many things or as much furniture as I used to. Swept the remaining debris that the vacuum cleaner didn't catch after that.

Worked on writing for a couple of hours after I finished. The frog leaps onto the seemingly sweet old peasant woman and licks her face...pulling up the skin and revealing horrifying burns. Brett burned Malade's face when she shoved her into the oven to save the others back at the gingerbread cottage. Malade angrily grabs the frog, which gives Charles enough time to get Brett away from her and bring her to the others. Trouble is, Gene, Richard, and Lee have no idea of how to revive her. Brett's husband is still stone, and they're sure he's the only one who could kiss her awake...

Broke for dinner at 6:30. Watched Match Game while eating leftovers for dinner. They're still in 1977 at the moment. While Brett and Gene make jokes about having fun at that little hotel in Encino, Richard tries to figure out an answer for the Head-to-Head question "Wife ___."

Made Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies while Sale of the Century was on. The woman champion dominated full-stop today. Neither of the other contestants got anywhere near her. She still wouldn't take any Instant Bargains...but she did manage to pick herself up another bonus round briefcase full of money.

Scooped the cookies onto pans while watching It's a Living at Tubi. They've added the third season since the last time I watched. By this point, they'd switched to syndication and added more of the characters I was familiar with from watching this frequently as a kid, with Crystal Bernard as token newcomer Amy and Richard Stahl as grouchy cook Howard.

The third season begins on a rather nasty note...actually, several nasty "Harassed." Amy keeps getting threatening letters from a stalker who has stolen her comb and locket. The other waitresses insist she go to the police; when they claim there isn't enough evidence to be worried, the women decide to ferret out the stalker at the restaurant themselves. Meanwhile, Nancy squares off with Howard when he refuses to make halibut that comes from a supplier he doesn't like.

Returned to Good Eats: Reloaded, this time live on The Cooking Channel, after I slid the cookies into the refrigerator. "The Icing Man Cometh: The Reload" revises his recipe for cooked and American buttercream frostings and his tutorials on how to frost a cake. The cooked frosting looks like it's a little too fussy for me, but I may try the American sometime. He apparently got a lot of complaints on his recipe for pot roast in "A Chuck For Chuck." He redoes this "chuck" to bring it back to the actually cooking it in a pot.

Finished the night with MASH on Hulu. "Bulletin Board" from the second season covers the many activities that occur on-base, from Henry Blake (McLean Stevenson) giving a lecture on sex (or trying to) to Klinger (Jamie Farr) getting into a fight with a doctor during the Shirley Temple film The Little Rebel. Blake is depressed after losing a patient and almost cancels a picnic to fund a local orphanage, but Hawkeye and Trapper convince him to join in the fun.

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