Friday, February 24, 2017

Hot Fun In the Wintertime

I couldn't believe how warm it was when I opened the front door this morning. I ended up opening the three windows in the house that are unlocked, too. It was sunny and a bit windier than yesterday, but otherwise more like late May than late February.

Finished off the grits and had a half of a grapefruit while doing more Rick Steves. Most Americans have probably never heard of the countries he visited today, five of the smallest in the world, never mind Europe. Vatican City and San Marino are both in the middle of Italy. Vatican City is the home of the Pope. San Marino is proud of its heritage as one of the oldest known democracies. Monaco is best known for its casino, car races, and expensive living. Lichtenstein and Andorra are nestled in mountains that keep invaders out and shoppers in.

Headed out around 11:30 to the Oaklyn Library for this week's volunteering session there. The kids' DVDs were ok, but the adult ones were a mess. The kids' section wasn't much better. There was a huge pile of books dumped in the "return" bucket that hadn't been shelved. I did see a family with a tiny baby in a stroller come in and take out a stack of DVDs and one regular guy who is always there. Otherwise, it's really too nice for most people to be hanging out in libraries.

Since it's about three blocks from the library, I browsed around at the House of Fun next. Needless to say, they weren't any busier. I was the only person in there besides the guy behind the counter. I looked over DVDs and Funko Pops, but ended up with a Lando Calarissian doll to go with my Han and Leia.

(Also, as I was passing the digital sign outside of the Oaklyn City Hall, I happened to notice the time and temperature. It was 80 degrees at almost 1 PM. I didn't believe it at first. That's just crazy.)

Next stop was back to West Clinton Avenue for lunch. Phillies Phatties was just as quiet at 1. I ordered my usual slice of cheese and slice of mushroom and took them outside. I watched people and cars stroll by as I ate my wedges and downed a can of Wild Cherry Pepsi.

Did a quick Three Stooges short while I got organized when I arrived at home. The trio are "Saved By the Belle" when they almost end up in front of a firing squad in a banana republic for treason. They have to help her find a map that'll save their military, and fast, before they find themselves filled with lead.

Spent the next few hours working on my story, and a few more hours after I got home. I keep getting so distracted doing research, I don't get far writing. Mon Mothma's party is mostly for politicians, neighbors, and a few members of the nobility. This includes Lady Ashoka Tano, who now works for Mothma as an advisor, Tarkin, and the formidable Baron Vader. Vader wears full body armor, including a breathing apparatus, and a helmet after an accident left him more machine than man.

Broke to head to Studio LuLoo around 4. I'd been meaning to bring a bag of donations, mainly toys and paper I didn't need, over there for a while. I picked the right day to do it. A couple of the kids were already there, playing store. The AG pieces and dresses I'd dropped in the bag were perfect for the little girls to turn one of the tables into their own mini fashion salon. They reminded me a lot of Ruby and Louise when they played, pretending they were taking orders for big Victorian wedding gowns and fine red velvet dresses.

When I finally ended writing for the day around 7, I broke for a small dinner. They had a bowl of fries at Studio LuLoo. I'd probably noshed on a few too many and now wasn't up to a huge dinner. I settled for finishing the leftover chili.

Tried something from The Vermont Country Store Cookbook after I ate. The only recipe they had that even remotely resembled a muffin was the first one, Buttermilk Doughnut  Puffs. I wanted them for lunch for work next week, so I didn't roll them in cinnamon and sugar. Otherwise, they were similar to Nutmeg Breakfast Puffs from the Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook, a moist, chewy cross between a cupcake and a spice muffin.

Watched The Devil's Brother as I worked. This was the third of four operetta adaptations where Laurel and Hardy lent comic support. Here, they're two poor peasants to first take to stealing, then try to imitate the famous Devil's Brother (Dennis King), a Robin Hood-type bandit. The thief catches them easily. He eventually takes them on as his assistants in robbing a rich, bored noblewoman (Thelma Todd) of her jewels. The boys would rather catch their boss and turn him in for the reward the king has on his head.

Dennis King was a Broadway star who specialized in overstuffed operettas like The Vagabond King. He was a bit too florid for Hollywood, and proves why with all his posturing here. Though King has the lion's share of the music, Todd and the boys do better handling some decent comedy bits, including Ollie and Stan trying to be bandits in the opening.

Not their best vehicle; really only recommended for their fans or fans of Todd, operetta, or Broadway.

No comments: