Monday Miscellany

An Unexpected House Guest

When I got home from work Friday, I was greeted by a Praying Mantis; not in the yard, or on the patio, but inside the house, just sitting on the table like he belonged there. After having a short conversation (“what do you think you’re doing in here?”) & nudging him onto my hand, I was able to safely move him outside and snap this picture:

Man, I need a new camera with a better macro setting!

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Barbeque on the River

On Saturday, we spent some time in Paducah, Kentucky at their annual BBQ competition. My wife and I are self-proclaimed BBQ snobs, and frankly none of the pork we tried quite lived up to our expectations. Not that it was all that bad. We were just expecting better, being a fairly respected regional BBQ competition. Maybe we expect too much.

The real fun happened spontaneously though. As we sat on the steps of the levy eating our que, a small group of people pulled up in a van, quickly set up speakers and a small sound system, and suddenly started to DANCE. They just looked like regular home-town people with taps on their shoes and they danced a sort of 2-step, electric slide, riverdance hybrid; clicking and clacking on the concrete banks of the Ohio River. I searched the entertainment itinerary and saw absolutely nothing that sounded like what we were watching. Which only leads us to one possible conclusion; we witnessed another incarnation of Spike Jonze’s guerilla dance troupe, the Torrance Community Dance Group. That’s right – we got PUNK’D! I laughed out loud and promptly took an elbow to the side, “hush, you might offend someone!” To which, “they’re offending me right now” was not an acceptable answer, just in case you were wondering.

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Paul Newman 1925-2008

Most of us try to be charitable people. And usually that manifests itself in fairly small ways according to our means. Paul Newman’s philanthropic contribution to our world should be an inspiration to us all. It is probably one of the aspects of his career that I admire and respect the most. He will be missed by more than just fans of his movies, but by all of those who have benefitted from his charities. His legacy will live on.

As far as his movies go though, here lies a fundamental difference between me and my wife. Her favorite is The Long Hot Summer because according to her, he was sexy before people said “sexy”. Mine on the other hand is his portrayal of the deadpan businessman Mr. Mussburger in the Coen Brothers holiday classic the Hudsucker Proxy;

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