Saturday, February 21, 2009

Quick late-night update

Sorry to have been a blog slacker the last few days. There was so much vacationing going on that I never had a good chance to sit down and catch folks up. Pictures still coming, soon. Maybe tomorrow if I get a chance.

So, what have I been doing that was so vital that I couldn't blog for the last 72 hours? Here's a list:

  • Drove up to Sonoma to see the HGTV Dream Home with Monique, her friend Kelly, my aunt Carol, and my cousin Laura.
  • Ate an entirely delcisious lunch at a really nice restaurant in Sonoma called The Girl and the Fig, or something like that. Believe it or not, I wasn't the one who suggested we eat at the joint that had all the nudie pictures on the wall and was named after a girl playing with a "fig".
  • Wandered with the wimmin-folk through a lot of stores on the downtown Sonoma Square. In all fairness to the wimmin-folk, that was a known hazard before the expedition set out.
  • Ate Mexican food for dinner. Yummy!
  • Watched "Slumdog Millionaire." Quick review: I liked it very much, but be forewarned that the first half-hour or 45 minutes has a lot of brutal scenes of what happens to children who grow up parentless in a brutal slum.
  • Slept in and lazed about Friday morning.
  • Ran some errands.
  • Went over to Tim and Jennifer Kardos's place in San Mateo where they hosted an entirely excellent dinner party. Played croquet, drank too much Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, had a delicious dinner, and caught up with a lot of folks I hadn't seen in too long. An excellent time.
  • Slept in and lazed about Saturday morning.
  • Went for a longish walk with Monique, my aunt Carol, and her dog Rosie up on one of the fire trails in the Berkeley hills.
  • Ran some more errands.
  • Ate a late lunch. (Two bologna and cheddar sandwiches on rye.)
  • Watched "Frost/Nixon." Quick Review: I liked it much more than I expected to. I feared that it would be a two-hour wallow in Watergate, but it was really an excellent character study with great storytelling. I'll probably be the only one, but tomorrow I'll be rooting for Frank Langella to win the Best Supporting Actor Oscar, not Heath Ledger. (Sorry, Bat-fans.) I'm not sure, but of the two Best-Movie nominees that I've seen this year, I think I might give the nod to "Frost/Nixon" over "Slumdog Millionaire". (Sorry, plucky-indie-flick fans.)
  • Delicious dinner and fun chit-chat with Monique, Carol, and Joe.

Wow, when I write it up like that it sounds quite busy. In reality, it's been a completely relaxing three days. But I hope this list at least provides a good excuse for my non-blogginess.

Oh, and I forgot to add it in to my list of "accomplishments," but I did write another haiku in response to my sister's comment regarding the photo with me and the elephant seals. You can see it by clicking on this link. I mention this haiku not because it is the best poem I have ever written in any form. (Although it is.) I mention it because it should be a good reminder to all that much of the value-add of this content-centric customer-enabling information solution can be found in the comments.

So, um, write some comments, folks.

Last item: preview of coming attractions for tomorrow. We are going to an Oscar party that is being hosted by a friend of my cousin Laura. The Oscars were a bit of a California tradition for me when I lived out here because just about every year I would pick up a pizza and watch the Oscars with my grandmother. We would also sometimes try to see at least one of the contenders in the week or two beforehand; but whether we made it to any of the contenders or not, she never lacked for opinions on the Oscar winners and losers. We had a lot of fun just watching the show and chit-chatting.

So, I still like to watch the Oscars with a pizza, usually with Monique these days. When I mentioned to Laura that maybe all three of us should grab a pizza and watch the show, she told us that her friend Jen hosts this little Oscar shindig every year and that it's "totally low-key and laid back." I thought this sounded like potential fun along the lines of my usual pizza and Oscar-viewing kind of evening, and Laura wrangled us an invite.

So then I ask what I should bring: pizza? bag o' chips? bottle o' wine? And Laura says, "Oh, we won't need any food, Jen always has it catered. Oh, and she usually gets this great chocolate fountain...."

I now remind you, gentle reader, of that moment just two paragraphs ago in which Laura used the words "totally low-key and laid back" to describe the shindig. Methinks this might not be my traditional take-out pizza Oscar affair. It could be that I'm moving up in the world of Oscar parties. I think I might wear the slacks instead of the beat-up shorts I've worn the last week, just to be safe.


  1. It sort of reminds me of the story of Laura trying to talk you into going someplace for spring break, because it wouldn't take very much money at all.

    It sounds like a wonderful vacation!!

    I very much enjoyed the elephant's seal haiku. Downright lyrical, it was.

  2. Monique here, high jacking John's laptop for a minute. Just had to add that there was something quite interesting about visiting this year's HGTV Dream Home when you are staying at a far dreamier home in the Berkeley hills... HGTV's offering just couldn't hold a candle, but the trip to Sonoma was lovely.

  3. Katie sends her greetings. She's been reading this blog along with me, her nose touching the desk top. She's been wondering if she should change her name to Katherine, now that she's in a more serious household, and wondered what you think...

  4. Is Katie the Beagle perhaps considering changing her name because it sounds a bit like Cady the Terrible? I wouldn't blame her for wanting to avoid any possible confusion.

  5. Actually, Gettysburg Mom, Cady is viewed here in our dog circles as the distant and semi-divine celebrity, someone eternally to emulate without a hope of success...

  6. About the only Cady-like tendency that Katie has ever emulated is a desire to roll in stinky stuff. And in that one aspect she may very well surpass her namesake.