Thursday, October 31, 2002

Irma Vep was quite bad in lots of ways, although as always Maggie Cheung was charming. That was Jean-Pierre Léaud. In appearance, he sure hasn't changed much. His English was all but impenetrable. >>> Maybe Warding Off, a/k/a Being Constructive beyond bounds, did help to influence events in Bexar County. I did my part!

Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Chronos/Cronos is from 1993. We've regretted missing it all these years, but Club Desvelado finally screened it and was glad to see it.>>>The pig boys are gone and so are all their friends, male and female. The guys all drove Suburbans or the equivalent; the girls all seemed to favor Jetta sedans, but for one, who had a Land Rover that she couldn't manage at all. No more empty cups, bottles, cigarette packs, and assorted trash of various sorts; no more drunken shouting under our windows at any hour from 10 pm to 4:30 am; no more using people's driveways to help them turn their mammoth vehicles; no more visiting fleets of 8 and more vehicles; no more blocking driveways altogether; no more running up over our curbs!>>>The pumpkins have been carved, and the traditional Breton chocolate pound cake has been baked.>>>I still don't understand why Alabama isn't hooked into the AFIS system; I don't even think there are any matching-funds requirements, maybe just a requirement to capture DNA samples on sex offenders?>>>I wonder whether the Beer Frame zine is still out there. I never could resist it at Congress Avenue Books. The Ice-O-Mat deserves it. K. says he's seen one from the old days. My favorite piece from Beer Frame was the one on the sanitary toothpick dispenser seen everywhere in Texas.>>>Ramah Navajo School Board finally has 'net access and a website being built. A commerce-type template appears to be in use and it's obviously all in the formative stage.

Tuesday, October 29, 2002

La Gran Vida showed in the screening rooms of Club Desvelado. Salma Hayek really gets around! Escapism makes a good escape while waiting for various resolutions beyond our control.

Monday, October 28, 2002

Club Desvelado screened Jackie Chan in The Accidental Spy and a Danish item called Italian Lessons. The Jackie movie has had big and obvious cuts. Sure enough, the IMDB shows that what was released here is a much shorter version--my guess is that a lot of "humor" and filial piety stuff went out the window. We'll never know, since all that was in stock was a dubbed, and not a subtitled, version. The Danish movie, also released as "Italian for Beginners," was very funny and not at all sentimental.>>> The Hart eSlate was a surprisingly appealing voting device. Unlike a touch-screen, it provides satisfying mechanical feedback from the toothed wheel and the punch-down buttons. The screen is exceptionally clear. There was a line, with, from appearances, people of every large Austin ethnicity represented. Turnout thus far has been about double the customary numbers for the H-E-B at Congress and Oltorf.>>> TV Azteca and Pappas are now at war in court.

Sunday, October 27, 2002

SR will be interested in knowing that Ann Cole's version of Got My Mo-Jo Working, courtesy of Paul Ray. There's a lot out there on the Mo-Jo copyright. KVET played a tribute to the Statler Brothers yesterday, in honor of the end of their touring career. The only times I've ever eaten "boughten" fried chicken was when we used to take it, as everybody did, to those great touring multi-act shows that included Loretta Lynn solo, Conway Twitty solo, Loretta and Conway together, the Statler Brothers, and then acts that varied each time the headliners came through--always a sold-out house and always lots of chicken. The shows were so long that they started early and that's why people took food in. Conway and Loretta karaoke items appear to be popular, even after all this time. This is the weekend when I climb up and close the transoms for the season. Transom hardware would be great sometime; the come-ons always tout that it ends the need to climb up on something to open and close the transoms. When a search is done on "transom hardware" there are obviously marine results as well. I'm not going to take time to look, but I bet that some of it has to do with mounting outboard motors.

Saturday, October 26, 2002

An article about TV campaign ads in Spanish mentions a variant phrase employing chicharrones and truenan in the same breath. I've found a partial translation of Tarzan in Spanish that puts some of this phrase into the mouth of a monkey.

Friday, October 25, 2002

It's a good thing that we had excellent training for listening to oratory and speechifying in Dinetah. That and Texas must be two of the last remaining strongholds of modern-day declamation!. I haven't been subjected to a stem-winder lately, but K. sure has! Moving slightly sideways, to the land o' politics, paid political ads are now ubiquitous on the Tejano/norteno radio stations: lots of free food and free music at the county (Travis and Hays, in particular) and district level and many different commercials for Tony Sanchez, in some of which he speaks himself. In one of those he says something that sounds like: "Aquí nomás mis chicharrones truenan" but I keep forgetting to ask what that means.

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Club Desvelado has completed Puro Conjunto. The best parts were the interviews of musicians conducted in Spanish and an account of an adult trying to learn the accordion. There's a piano accordion with Ruben Ramos, but every else uses one of two accordion brands. I haven't seen anything about the designs painted on the bellows: norteno usually red, white, and green; conjunto tejano, usuall "azteca" designs, often red, white, and black.

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

TV Azteca was found at channel 20. At last what seemed to be the right movie poster was found in my book Carteles de la epoca de oro del cine mexicano/Poster Art From the Golden Age of Mexican Cinema to be able to tell from the caricature that the movie engrossing us is "Tal para cual" (we were pretty sure that we were seeing Jorge Negrete, but weren't so sure about whether that was Luis Aguilar). No end-credits were shown. I love this shrine to Mexican movies.

Monday, October 21, 2002

We're still enjoying a table arrangement made from large branches of pepper-laden tabasco plants, highly ornamental, and courtesy of the South Austin Farmers' Market. K. is still enjoying his Pyrenees cheese, which has been confirmed to be, as he suspected, from sheep's milk. It was a little more than a year ago that we finally invested in a VCR, one of those cheapies that arrives with a 13-inch color TV. At one go, we enjoyed our first color TV, used our first remote control, and were for the first time able to record and play videotapes. The warranty year is over and now the recorder part doesn't work. So we bought a 40-dollar separate video recorder. It took two of us to figure out how to attach it, but we managed, with only a few ruffled feathers. So now, when we're really riveted by our telenovela we can record it to watch later and not sit there glued to the screen for fear we'll miss out on something.>>>>>During a novela commercial break we went to TBN. Jesse DuPlantis seemed to be preaching on the theme, "If the suit don't fit, it ain't yours!" This is an idea with possibilities, though I'm not exactly sure what they are.

Sunday, October 20, 2002

Bielinski's has turned to producing chicken sausage. "We pass everyr test, and we know we're the best!" This is reportage from Central Market South. Sunday seems to be better than Saturday for avoiding the annoyance factor, which keeps us from shopping there more than three or four times a year. Only when we're driven there do we go: somebody's craving for sulze/souse or the inability to find Pederson's sausage anywhere else or need some Pederson's Canadian bacon for eggs benedict. We hit it lucky and actually found link sausage. It's Pederson's and has a high fennel factor, which is great, though we don't know whether it's intentional or just left over from an Italian-sausage production run. In celebration of the cooler weather at last, we invested in a good-sized joint for the oven. There was one butcher on duty behind the counter, obviously a veteran, and he did us up right. Although there was nothing to complain about in any way; Kash-Karry's is still better for flavor.

Saturday, October 19, 2002

What a racket it is to require continuing education credits. At last all for every household occupation are now tidied up for the year. Just something else to check off the List of Dread.

Friday, October 18, 2002

Club Desvelado roared through "The Last Tortilla." I've linked to an Austin Chronicle review of this short-story collection. Published by the University of Arizona press, this collection, although it has narrative propulsion in nearly every piece, annoys because of the poor editing of the Spanish-language interjections, which are frequent and often obviously incorrect, both grammatically and vernacularly. I do like it that Sergio Troncoso has his own domain.

Thursday, October 17, 2002

Gotta love Airborne Express, especially after our very bad experience with UPS this summer. Airborne doesn't seem to have as many drop-off/pick-up locations as its competitors, but it has certainly worked for us in this case. I'm still in ¡Ojala! mode. I want to store those papers and forget about them!

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

Club Desvelado roared through a Reginald Hill/Patrick Ruell item, courtesy of the library. If we had known, we had not remembered that RH and PR are one and the same. "Beyond the Bone" by Reginald Hill is the "Urn Burial" by Patrick Ruell, originally published in 1975. It's been a long time since I first read "Hydriotaphia." "Who knows whether the best of men be known, or whether there be not more remarkable persons forgot, than any that stand remembered in the known account of time?" There are several on-line shrines devoted to Thomas Browne, each quite individual. A Google search on "urn burial" finds links to cremation urns, garden urns, celtic urns, wrought-iron urns, urns for pet ashes, and many other marvels of the kind. Bartlett's quotations (1919 edition) has many short bits, mostly from "Religio medici," many of which are cited in the works of others up to that time.

Tuesday, October 15, 2002

The "summer tenants" don't seem to realize that summer's over. The maximum number of vehicles thus far has been eight or nine, all but two of which are always of Suburban size. Now they not only come extremely close to encroaching on the actual narrow driveway itself; they block all the places where the various kinds of trash are to be set out. Without visible means of support, they must be depending on Daddy for it all>>>>The KO-OP site seems to rely a lot on Moveable Type.

Monday, October 14, 2002

We're still laughing about KO-OP radio on Saturday. All the regular program people had been told that they should play "indigenous music" and so the lounge show was broadcasting such items as "Besame mucho" and "Maria Elena," along with various Xavier Cugat, Perez Prado, Esquivel, and Desi Arnaz. There's a new KO-OP website design and there's nothing at all wrong with it; I just miss the funky, homemade look of the old one. How long with the public forum last before it's suppressed?

Sunday, October 13, 2002

CapMetro responded to my e-mail. I wrote to two different people, and received responses from a third and fourth person, both responses based on the same form-letter foundation and not entirely responsive, although one was more adeptly reworked. Leaving passengers on the curb must be a very frequent occurrence.

Saturday, October 12, 2002

One of my favorite sites is the diccionario de mexicanismos. I was wondering why I've never seen campechana anywhere in a book.

Friday, October 11, 2002

The likelihood that CapMetro will respond to my e-mail is probably nil. If doesn't already do so, though, CapMetro should record every instance of failure to pick up passengers because the bus is already full to the gills with standees. Fred Gilliam and Barbara Chavis, what do you say?

Thursday, October 10, 2002

Major League Baseball is so stingy with free on-line information these days that the best source seems to be baseball in Spanish, courtesy of Univision. I was hoping to find out who plays Barbara Rivera in that over-the-top way, competing with Marga Lopez for most chewed-up scenery. The site doesn't even have a complete cast listing, but I found an entire site dedicated to novela forums, which has quite a humorous and active one devoted to postings in English on El privilegio. Last night was the first time that I noticed a credit for Barbara, but it went by too fast. She turns out to be Maty Huitron and we've never seen her in a soap. Her stage experience is considerable. Love that custume in Privilegio. She is invariably attired in an ankle-length skirt, but one slit up to there, and she sports matinee-length or 12-button sateen gloves, gaudy rings worn over, and brandishes a long cigarette holder. Usually there's a "jewel"-studded sparkly wide polo-type belt, also. A web digression took me to a major glove site, with links to many others. When it comes to glove, La Crasia has a lock on the fashion mags.

Wednesday, October 09, 2002

We're still keeping up with "El privilegio de amar" but when there's a commercial we flip the dial. The nearest neighbor is the Trinity Broadcasting Network, which even has a domain in Spanish. Very often the preacher is John Hagee of the Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, of whom we had never before heard. Lately we saw him sing with three of his children, which upped him on the scale. This week we saw him fronting a combo and playing a vaguely jazzy saxophone version of "I'll Fly Away," which upped him even more! I thought his name was James, a mistake taken into account by his meta-tags, evidently, because a Google search turned up the proper site, at which there's an immediate pop-over window touting "Avenger of Blood," described as the second volume of The Apocolypse Diaries and having the following descriptive blurb: "This powerful sequel to Devil's Island follows the apostle John and the family of Christians he has befriended as they confront danger and the many challenges that face first-century believers."

Tuesday, October 08, 2002

Part of the membership of Club Desvelado is rereading various bits of Trollope. We had both forgotten about Lord Boanerges. K. asked where that name came from and I was surprised to find that I knew. Meeting with disbelief, I consulted Brewer's and found that I was correct. Both of us thought the pronunciation to be "bo-ANN-er-jeez" but it's really "bo-ann-URGE-ease" as it turns out. An on-line concordance describes Boanerges as a last name, but I'd call it an epithet. I had remembered that Lord Boanerges had something to do with the Jupiter or Thunderer newspaper, but it turns out that he's a great lover of meetings and statistics and said to be an analogue of the real-life Lord Brougham.

Monday, October 07, 2002

At last we captured our indoor anole. He was the first one we've seen in quite a long time anywhere on the premises and we didn't want him to expire indoors. This past year or so the tree lizards seem to have dominated, keeping the anoles shy, so we were glad to see this guy.

Sunday, October 06, 2002

Time out from drudgery is time well spent! Indulgence today was in Men in Black II and Spider-Man. A good time was had by all, including the many children, from toddlers to teens, and the captive sugar glider (we'd never seen one of those before).

Saturday, October 05, 2002

Why is Time magazine still pretending to be a newsmag? It might as well call itself "Disease Weekly" these days. The preceding, of course, was a rhetorical question, prompted by the standard cover-story articles of the past year. All the editors must be going through a hypochondriac phase. A Google search on "disease weekly" found "Skin Disease Weekly" up near the top, evidently a webzine only; motto: "better hygeine through horror." On the more "legitimate" portion of the disease weekly spectrum are to be found Heart Disease Weekly, Digestive Disease Weekly, Infectious Disease Weekly, etc., etc., etc.

Friday, October 04, 2002

I only lately realized that reissue of the Nonesuch Explorer series in CD form has begun. There were 92 vinyl albums. The ones that I still have are some of my favorite music.

Thursday, October 03, 2002

Software conflicts are driving me nuts; why should products from one source constantly conflict with one another? Everything's conspiring to hinder the great annual design project. For some reason the free stuff is firing up again. Direct marketing may be recovering after the great drop in use of the postal service following the day of calamity. In the mailbox today were a free calling card from Televisa and a Mojo Bar from the Cliff's people, plus an offer of a free software download that's very useful. I'm not tempted to try the Mojo, which arrived in "mixed nuts" flavor.

Wednesday, October 02, 2002

It's every so much fun to reach every little word in your entire homeowner policy. At least we haven't been discontinued and at least the increase in the premium is not so severe as that suffered by most others.

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

Austin's own Bookwoman is among the endangered. I still miss everything about Congress Avenue Books.