Monday, March 27, 2017

The Game's Afoot!

The rain was coming down in buckets when I awoke this morning. I wish I could have stayed in bed, but I had work later. I settled for reading Princess of the Midnight Ball and writing in my journal for as long as I could get away with it. When I finally got up, I had breakfast, then refilled my cookie tin with Stir-n-Drop Oatmeal Cookies from The Betty Crocker Cooky Book. They're simple to make and relatively low-fat, using oil instead of shortening or butter. (I also replaced the white flour with whole wheat.)

To my dismay, when I went to watch the first episode of Sherlock, I couldn't. Disc One was missing, and of course, it held every episode but the final one and the extras. At least I could watch the last episode. "His Last Vow" was inspired by the original Holmes story The Adventure of Charles Augustus Milverton. A very modern Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Dr. John Watson (Martin Freeman) make their way from a crack house to the office of renown newspaper owner Charles Milverton Magnussen, who is blackmailing several high-ranked government officials. To Sherlock's shock, John's wife Mary turns up at his office with a gun, which she then turns on Sherlock. Even after he manages to survive, they still need to catch Magnussen in the act...and figure out who Mary really is and what she's up to.

I can see why these have been a hit on both sides of the Atlantic, winning piles of awards. They sort of remind me of the McBride series, using a similar tactic of allowing us to see what's going on in the hero's head. Unlike laid-back McBride, this "hero" is more of an anti-hero - even Sherlock calls himself a sociopath - but Cumberbatch gives him the right amount of wit and even a bit of charm under all that deducting. My favorite character by far was Freeman's witty Watson, forever at the end of his rope, even as he follows his best friend into ever-more insane adventures.

Finished just in time to head out for work. I had a rough time bagging early this afternoon. We had the opposite problem from yesterday - we'd gone from having not enough help to there being too much. They had two other baggers rounding up carts and bagging for most of the afternoon, plus one of the cashiers didn't want anyone bagging for her. I was happy to return to the gift card "mall" peg board and get all that organized for the last couple of hours.

It did get busier in the afternoon, and that may have had to do with the improved weather. The rain stopped even before I had breakfast. By the time I was heading home, the sun was out, and the temperature had jumped into the upper 60's. I opened as many windows as I could and changed into lighter clothes.

Had leftovers for dinner and worked on a crocheting project while watching the other Sherlock episode I'd managed to find, The Abominable Bride. This technically picks up where "His Last Vow" left off...sort of. Sherlock dreams himself into the 19th century setting of the original Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stories, replacing the planes and cars with hansom cabs and carriages. Holmes and Watson find themselves trying to solve the puzzling case of a bride who shot at people in the street before killing herself. Later that night, she seems to reappear to murder her husband. Holmes is intrigued by her seeming ability to come back to life. There's no such thing as ghosts, he insists. He takes another, seemingly unrelated case, about a man who whose life is threatened after receiving five orange pips. How are the two cases related...and how do they relate to the present-day Sherlock and the return from the dead of one of his most notorious archenemies?

A bit strange, but otherwise just as much fun as what I saw of the show...and if you're a fan of historical mysteries or the original Holmes stories, this semi-adaptation of The Five Orange Pips may be even better. The switching back and forth between the present and the past can get confusing, and the ending is a bit strange. Also, major warning that, like the original books, these can be fairly dark and do feature some blood, violence, and more than a few references to Holmes' drug habits. They're not for young detectives, but teen mystery, police procedural, and Holmes fans will find much to enjoy.

Finished out the night with more Kirby's Epic Yarn. Took on Water World this time. More than half the rounds were set partially or entirely underwater...which was actually a lot of fun, when you figured out how to get your fish to move with the currents. I loved being a dolphin - it's a lot more fun than trying to draw tracks for that darn train. You can leap into the air and through hoops, gathering beads and other items. The squid-like main boss wasn't much of a problem, either. I had no trouble getting the two extra levels, including more fun with the dolphin.

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