Just to be festive, and just because one item had stubbornly eluded all my shop-local efforts, and just because it was on the way to the movie theater where we were seeing “True Grit” Friday afternoon, we stopped at Best Buy on Christmas Eve. The computer said they had nine copies of Crystal Bowersox’s “Farmer’s Daughter,” but the best efforts of the three of us and the nice salesgirl couldn’t turn up one.
“I could check in the back,” she offered, not very enthusiastically. Yes, The Back, the famous Back, always your last-ditch hope in stalking the elusive whatever-it-is. I took a look at the line, which stretched from the registers through a side aisle, almost to the back of this very big big box. It was a line worthy of a new Apple product, a Springsteen concert where tickets were only available at the door, or the Soviet Union. My resolve cracked. Screw it, Amazon’s handling this one. We’ll have it shipped directly to my sister-in-law’s house. Let’s go to the movies.
And with that, the holiday really began. It was a nice one. Kate got a guitar and a USB mic. She was upstairs within a couple of hours, laying down tracks in Garage Band. I got new kitchen stuff and a Madhur Jaffrey cookbook. Alan got a framed photo he’d admired in a small show last summer. It’s a street scene in contemporary Havana, because we are of course communists. I still recall 1993, when Alan and I were planning our wedding, and the evil empire was collapsing and surely Fidel would fall in a matter of weeks. “Let’s go to Cuba for our honeymoon,” I said. “I want to see it before Hilton and Marriott and all the rest of them get their mitts on it.” Ha ha ha. (We ended up honeymooning in San Francisco — same politics, colder climate. Ha ha.)
I’d still like to go. Although the photographers had some cautions: “Bring food,” they said. “We went to bed hungry a few nights. You can have all the money in the world, but there’s still nothing to buy.” Vacation paradise.
I also got a Keurig, and if you don’t know what one is yet, you will soon — it’s the single-cup coffeemaker that’s sweepin’ the nation. Now that I have reached the age of galloping decrepitude and near-constant exhaustion, I find myself wanting a single cup of coffee from time to time. But I’m too bourgeois to make a pot, because I know I would throw most of it out, etc. Enter the Keurig, which follows the disposable razor/inkjet printer model of economic extortion — cheap machine, dear supplies. I don’t care if the little K-cups are pricey. I don’t spend much money on alcohol anymore, so I’ll just shift the funds over to caffeine. And it makes a sublime cup of coffee, in about 60 seconds. I’m an American, and trash production is my birthright.
How was “True Grit,” you ask? Pretty good. Not perfect, but very entertaining. Where do the Coen brothers find these fantastic character actors to play the little parts? The voice of the lawyer who cross-examines Rooster Cogburn in the opening scenes will ring in my ears for days; it belongs to Joe Stevens. And Roger Deakins’ camera work was glorious, as usual. I don’t think Kate liked it very much, however; she said she couldn’t understand Jeff Bridges. And there was a big continuity error, after Maddie swims the river with her horse and faces Rooster and LaBoeuf on the other side, completely dry. I guess they had a reason for it, but it bugged me, too.
How was your holiday? Are you off this week? I wish I was, but alas, I am not. And so I’m outta here.
A little bloggage:
When the roll is called up yonder, Jimmy Carter will be there. A true Christian (despised by many other alleged Christians).
Jon Stewart, an heir to Edward R. Murrow? Maybe.
Roy does the dirty work of reading the right-wing blogs so you don’t have to, and has compiled his year-end top 10. You have to read some of these to believe them.
And now I’m off. Good Monday, all.