Saturday, July 14, 2018

Summertime Harvest

Started off an absolutely gorgeous morning with breakfast and more Scooby Doo. You can't get much more late 70's than "The Diabolical Disc Demon." Mystery Inc has come to a recording studio to make an album. The writer they were going to work with has vanished, however, leaving behind a half-finished song that a KISS-like ghost seems to be especially interested in.

Charlie appeared around 9, banging and hammering. Turns out, yes, he decided to start taking down the old porch/roof and putting up the new one today. I wish he'd given me some heads-up besides his mother mentioning in the letter I gave to Rose that he'd be starting it "when the weather was right." I'm to come and go via the steep stairs that lead through Charlie's side of the house.

Headed out around 10 to run errands. There was a big green sign for a yard sale on Woodland Terrace at the end of Goff Avenue. Yard sales are rare here in the summer. Alas, I saw nothing of interest and moved on.

Next stop was the Collingswood Farm Market. The summer harvest is in full swing now...and so are the crowds looking for produce for their barbecues and pool parties. I saw cantaloupe and spaghetti squash for the first time today, and the orchard booth finally had the little peaches I like. I also grabbed blueberries, a tomato, and two ears of corn.

I had no other major plans for today, so I decided to stroll around Collingswood for a few hours. I needed new heads for my electric toothbrush; picked them up at Rite Aid. Used the bathroom at the library, then went across the street to InnerGroove Records and checked them out. It took me 40 minutes, but I came up with:

The Story of Star Wars - Five dollars for this book-and-record kids' is cheap compared to what it usually costs elsewhere. The book's missing, but it's not like I don't already have a vintage picture book version of New Hope anyway.

High Energy - Another awesome K-Tel rock collection, this one from 1979

Linda Rondstat - For Sentimental Reasons (replacing a cassette copy I've had for years)

WIBG 30 Big Goldens - Classic rock collection, this one from what was then known as WIBG AM in Philadelphia (they're now WNTP, a conservative talk radio station)

After briefly peeking at Frugli Consignment, I decided some lunch was in order. I forgot how popular Collingswood is on Saturdays. Sabrina's Cafe had a long line; The Pop Shop was full to capacity. Ended up at Tortilla Press for their brunch. While they weren't as busy, there were enough groups there to keep the staff hopping. I watched them and the cars passing by the intersection of Collings and Haddon Avenues outside while having an egg sandwich with peppers and onions for lunch.

Took the long way home via Newton Lake Park across from the CVS, where I watched the fireworks on the 4th. I wish the park wasn't looking so dry. We so badly need rain. Most people must have been in town. I saw one woman coming back from the bus stop on the White Horse Pike and a couple of kids on bikes.

Went right into dusting when I got home. Put on the WIBG collection and turned it up to drown out Charlie's cursing. I shouldn't have put off cleaning for so long. The dust was really bad, especially in my bedroom where the window was open.

Worked on writing for a while after I finished as Charlie pulled ancient siding off the side of the house. Angry over losing his quarry, Vader strangles the officer who'd been in charge of capturing them, then gives the nearest officer, Admiral Piett, his job. He defers only to Palpatine, the dictator of Coruscant, who is also with him. He tells Palpatine that he knows who Luke and Leia are and that he wants to train them and Harry as apprentices. Palpatine thinks this is an excellent idea, especially if they want to get the Sword of Light back and find the other two.

(And I heard Charlie complain after he got the siding off that he found ants burrowing into the side of the house. While I do still on rare occasions see ants in the house, I haven't had a major infestation since that one year there were a couple of branches of old trees leaning on the roof. Charlie, of course, was more worried about them getting into his side than mine.)

Broke at quarter of 6 for a quick leftovers dinner and Lego Clone Wars. Completed "Rookies" and got the character for that round, Darth Maul. Found one more piece on "Shadow of Malevolence" and two on "Lair of Grievous." No luck with "Destroy the Malevolence," though.

Switched to the remaining episodes on the Scooby Doo disc to finish the night. "Scooby's Chinese Fortune Kooky Caper" is slightly less stereotypical than their first Chinese case, "Mystery Mask Mix-Up." A friend of the gang's who lives in China is being haunted by The Moon Monster, a creature so terrifying, it turns anyone who stands in its shadow to stone. The creature wants him to toss family's fortune into the Rampoo River or deal with a terrible curse...but Velma thinks there's more to it than that.

"A Menace In Venice" is a similar story, only this time, they're in Italy, and it's a necklace, rather than an entire treasure, the gang has to defend. A ghost haunts him, insisting that he give up the valuable jewelry.

A ghostly military commander in Puerto Rico warns them "Don't Go Near the Fortress of Fear." Shaggy and Scooby are more than happy to concede his request. The others would rather make a few inquiries as to what he really wants there.

"The Warlock of Wimbleton" frankly looks more like a super-villain from a bad 70's comic book than a warlock who tries to terrorize a young British tennis player into quitting the game. The gang hits Stonehenge to see if the warlock is the real deal.

The disc - and the series - ended in Canada with "The Beast Is Awake at Bottomless Lake." This time, they're on a fishing trip to the title destination when they discover it's going dry. A fishy Beast is driving tourists away from the town and drying up the water. The gang try to figure out what it is that the Beast really wants.

If you're a Scooby fan, these later-day Where are You episodes are just as much fun as the originals from earlier in the 70's. However, taken as a whole, they can get repetitive and a bit dull despite the changes in settings. I can almost understand why they brought in Scrappy shortly after - something different was needed.

The Scooby TV series, especially the earlier ones, are really best taken as they were originally intended to be - in small, bite-sized doses. Binge-watching reveals how formulaic they are; watching episode by episode lets you enjoy the settings and Scooby and Shaggy's antics without the feeling of sameness.

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