Friday, March 16, 2018

"Personal Shopper"

Tonight, I watched "Personal Shopper" on DVD, a scary ghost story. The 2016 film is directed by Olivier Assayas and stars Kristen Stewart. It's a wonderful time to be alive and not be a ghost - the Assayas/Stewart partnership is making the world's best films, this decade:

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Zumba, Tonight

I recall my cardiologist responding much like the rabbi in “Fiddler on the Roof”: “Dancing? Well, it’s not exactly forbidden.” So, off to try some Zumba!

I moderated the pace for myself. I was starting from a long period of no exercise. No need to push it.

I tolerated the exercise pretty well. Better than expected, and better tonight than a month ago. I recall on February 16th, even with oxygen, I got winded just walking to the end of the hall, and back.

With my instructors Barreto Brothers Zumba. Andres the DJ was kind enough to play my favorite Zumba tune!:

"Black Panther"

There is nothing I find as annoying as a (name any one of them) Marvel Comics movie: opaque, incoherent, and lacking human interest. "Black Panther" is nevertheless mildly-interesting and probably the most-coherent of the Marvel Comics movies. It's a low bar, and so far, none of the others have approached even that modest achievement.

I met Joe the Plumber at the IMAX Theater. I hushed him when he started talking and laughing loudly. I think he's pissed, because he stalked out just before the movie's end, and simply vanished.

Finished Watching "The Wire"

It's funny, I was having a sense of deja vu watching some of Season 5. I think I may heard buzz about "The Wire" back in the 2005 time frame, and may have seen some of the episodes back then. Of course, I didn't know the people, so I didn't retain the story, but at least I was dabbling in it.

I liked the series a lot. A real sense of place - Baltimore. "Breaking Bad" lifted some stuff straight from "The Wire," such as testimony at the addiction group meetings with Bubs. I liked some of the characterizations too: Omar, of course, but other folks too, like Daniels, Freamon, Levy, and especially the cold, cold Snoop.

Fortunately, No One Believes Anything House Republicans Say About Anything

The whitewash commission folds:
Democrats will probably release their own report on the investigation, a reflection of the rancor that has defined the House investigation for months.

At one point, Republicans even discussed putting up a physical wall in one of the committee's secured rooms to divide Democratic and Republican staff members. The plan was abandoned, according to sources with knowledge of the idea, a decision that had more to do with logistical concerns than any cooling of partisan animosity.

Lawmakers repeatedly accused one another of breaching confidentiality rules by leaking bits of closed-door testimony to skew public views of the evidence.

And the committee spent more than a month consumed by controversial allegations, advanced by Republicans and rebutted by Democrats, that federal law enforcement had improperly eavesdropped on a former Trump campaign foreign policy advisor, Carter Page, shortly before the election.

Gina Haspel, Trump's Choice to Lead the CIA, is Bush's Chief Torturer

Of course:
The 31-year-old Zubaydah begged for mercy, saying that he knew nothing about the terror group’s future plans. The CIA official in charge, known in agency lingo as the “chief of base,” mocked his complaints, accusing Zubaydah of faking symptoms of psychological breakdown. The torture continued.

That “chief of base” was Haspel.

ICE’s Spokesman Refuses to Endorse Trump Administration Lies, and Resigns

Good for him:
The now-former spokesman, James Schwab, told news outlets late Monday that his resignation stemmed from statements by Homan and Sessions that potentially hundreds of “criminal aliens” evaded ICE during a Northern California raid in February because Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf warned the immigrant community in advance.

Schwab said he pushed back on that characterization — but said ICE instructed him to “deflect” questions from the news media.

“I quit because I didn’t want to perpetuate misleading facts,” he told the San Francisco Chronicle, which broke the story. “I asked them to change the information. I told them that the information was wrong, they asked me to deflect, and I didn’t agree with that. Then I took some time and I quit.”

Times Are Tough Under The W-X Freeway

I'm Kind-Of Like This Guy These Days

Why should I pay attention to the antics of worthless scum in Washington, D.C.? Live your own life, your way:
Donald Trump’s victory shook him. Badly. And so Mr. Hagerman developed his own eccentric experiment, one that was part silent protest, part coping mechanism, part extreme self-care plan.

He swore that he would avoid learning about anything that happened to America after Nov. 8, 2016.

“It was draconian and complete,” he said. “It’s not like I wanted to just steer away from Trump or shift the conversation. It was like I was a vampire and any photon of Trump would turn me to dust.”

It was just going to be for a few days. But he is now more than a year into knowing almost nothing about American politics. He has managed to become shockingly uninformed during one of the most eventful chapters in modern American history. He is as ignorant as a contemporary citizen could ever hope to be.

Them Rocks Is Heavy

Another busy night at all the British henge sites as staff work all night to move the stones forward by an hour.

Sunday, March 11, 2018


Billed as a black comedy, but really almost too bleak to be a comedy. Life among the Ice Princesses of Connecticut.

The Hippo In Southern Mexico

Not where it should be:
Authorities say they're worried about a hippopotamus that is roaming loose in a swampy area of southern Mexico.

Nobody knows where the animal came from, but hippos are not native to the country. The hippo appears to have been living in a pair of ponds near Las Chopas, in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz.

...The hippo was first spotted by local media near a garbage dump in January. Residents of the town have come to love the animal so much they have nicknamed it "Tyson".