“Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus” + Himalayan “Stress Tea” = Fabulous

This evening, in loving tribute to the husband’s forebearance in allowing self to gallivant all over the Eastern hemisphere the past year, self cooked dinner:  baked chicken (50 minutes in oven at 350 degrees) + microwaved broccoli spears (3 minutes in microwave on high).

Showing on SyFy this evening:  “Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus,” execrable show.  Ah, how low SyFy has fallen, from the stellar highs of “Battlestar Galactica.”

To relax self’s overworked (Read:  tired) muscles, self decides to try a box of tea she purchased from Dharamsala.  The tea is called Himalayan Stress Tea.  Self has fond memories of wandering the streets of Dharamsala, inn-keeper/ guide Max at her side to run interference from aggressive vendors (Actually, not necessary:  all vendors in Dharamsala were extremely courteous, at least when self was in front of them)

The box of tea was surprisingly intact, not even one bent corner, after being in self’s suitcase and being banged around by baggage handlers in four different airports:  Amritsar, Delhi, Mumbai, and Newark.  Not to mention the ones at San Francisco.  Truly, self reflects, her voyage home (earlier in the week) was one of epic proportions.

Inside the box of tea is a helpful insert that proclaims:

Stress is exhausting.  It can also cause headaches, irritability, and nervousness.  Unwind over a cup of Himalayan Stress Tea.  It relieves physical and mental fatigue, rejuvenates body and mind, fortifies the immune system and improves your resistance to stress.  After all, life has its easy moments too.

Hoooly mind-blowing wisdom!

(Self also bought, from the same store, “Eye Refreshening Natural Kohl,” so impressed was she by the cat’s eyes most of the women she saw around her in India were sporting)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Things Self Did This Weekend That She Hasn’t Done in a Very Very Long Time

(Caveat: Self is not going to discuss yesterday’s excruciating US loss to Ghana in the World Cup knock-out round! Noooo!)

She saw a chees-y movie. This one was on the Syfy Channel and was called “Suprecroc vs. Dinogator.” Or was it “Dinogator vs. Supercroc”? Never mind. All dear blog readers need to know is that it was produced by Roger “King of the B Movies” Corman and that it featured a special guest appearance by the late David Carradine. Oh, and of course: there were gazillions of babes in neon-colored bikinis who were getting chomped up one by one. And a Crocodile Dundee-type of guy dressed in black leather and a black Cowboy hat.

Self also stood in the lobby of the Century 20 and looked at the advertisements for upcoming movies. “Predators” (with Adrian Brody and Laurence Fishburne) is coming July 4th weekend. “Resident Evil” with Milla Jovovich is likewise opening in July. And “Twilight: Eclipse” is showing next weekend. (Did anyone catch Taylor Lautner last night on SNL? He was hi-LA-rious!)

Made Kare-Kare (cheated: used Mama Sita’s Kare-Kare mix). The broth was rather watery, but the meat was falling off the bone, and hubby rated the dish A+. Self thinks the last time she made kari-kari was over 10 years ago.

Bought “Bavarian Emmentaler” cheese from German Haus on Broadway. The owner, an elderly but still quite hale-looking gent, was climbing over the upstairs balcony to fix a sign. His wife, at the cashier’s table, yelled but he paid no mind. She then turned to me and said, “Men!”

Self continued to read Paul Fussell’s The Great War and Modern Memory, assigned reading almost 30 years ago in a class on the Literature of World War I. She has no memory of this book, at all. But she sees her own twenty-something notes scribbled on the margins. This, as self is sure she doesn’t need to inform dear blog readers, is a very eerie experience. Here is what she reads, on p. 131:

Ernest Parker, miraculously spared while his battalion was all but wiped out on September 16, 1916, says in 1964: “One day … I shall revisit that little undulation in the fields between Gueudecourt and Delville Wood on an early morning in mid-September. There I will give thanks for being spared another fifty years of happy and fruitful life … ” Such leanings towards ritual, such needs for significant journeys and divisions and returns and sacramental moments, must make us skeptical of Bernard Bergonzi’s conclusion: “The dominant movement in the literature of the Great War was … from a myth-dominated to a demythologized world.” No: almost the opposite. In one sense the movement was towards myth, towards a revival of the cultic, the mystical, the sacrificial, the prophetic, the sacramental, and the universally significant. In short, towards fiction.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Discoveries of the Day

  1. Self discovered that she wasn’t dreaming when she thought she once watched a double bill in the balcony of an old moviehouse in Bacolod. Apparently, there really was a movie (or several) called “Maciste.”
  2. Self found a site called “classymommy.” And the mamas there are really hot. Cool, she bookmarked it.
  3. “Prince of Persia” got a 39% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Mebbe now hubby will stop wanting to see this movie?  (One reviewer, Tim Brayton of Antagony and Ecstasy, says:  “It’s like watching Pirates of the Caribbean with all the Jack Sparrow bits taken out.  Are you salivating yet?”)
  4. Virgil’s The Aeneid is a really wonderful book. Which makes self sound stupid. But, honestly, how many blog readers have actually read it? Book 1- Book 12, self means? At least now, self is making the effort.

The translation she’s reading is the one by Robert Fagles. And for the last three nights, she’s stayed up reading until 2 in the morning. And since the li’l crits always wake her up with their whining about 6 a.m., self yawns and yawns the whole day through. It just so happened that while self was a very good student and got mostly A’s in English and History, she wound up thinking that The Aeneid was another version of The Iliad. And only now does she discover that while The Iliad was about the Greeks, The Aeneid is about the Trojans. Duh.

Book Two, “The Final Hours of Troy,” has the Trojans dragging in the big wooden horse, then having to watch as the Greeks destroy their city and drag the vestal virgin Cassandra, Priam’s daughter, out of a temple by her hair. And then the Trojan hero Aeneas decides he’s had enough of the fighting and must go home to defend his family, and luckily he finds them all still alive and decides to walk with them to safety, only his father can’t walk and so Aeneas has to carry him on his back. And in all the confusion of carrying his father on his back and holding his young son by the hand, Aeneas gets separated from his wife. And he runs back to the burning Troy to find her. And he finds the city burned to ashes, and meets the ghost of his wife, who tells him she forgives him, but now he’s got to get out of there.

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness — this is probably the most exciting story self has ever read!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Early (June) Wednesday Morning Musings

Self thinks it was 11 when she fell asleep last night.

Son had just returned from visiting a friend in Portola Valley and was sitting with hubby on the couch, watching a horror/comedy flick called “Eight-Legged Freaks,” starting David Arquette. Giant spiders were attacking a group of motorcycle-riding teen-agers across a desert.

Dearest Mum had come and gone, leaving wreckage. Thankfully, self was able to cover up most of the signs of the tornado by the time hubby got home (past 9 p.m.): That is, dishes had been cleared and put away, and even the atrocious (overcooked) shrimp & pasta dinner was mercifully concealed in a pot with a lid. And self had already finished small cup of tiramisu & chocolate caramel non-fat yogurt from Yumi Yogurt.

Speaking of which, what is with that place? Last night, line was out the door (a sure sign of summer) even though the weather was cool. And the people in line were: members of the Stanford swimming team (My, those girls are huge! Self came up to just about their chests); a middle-aged grey-haired lady who refused to respond to self’s small talk, who refused to in fact even look in self’s direction; and a slim female giant in a suit with a cast on one leg who Dearest Mum was giving quite the eye-ful, as she maneuvered adroitly and un-aided to her car (in spite of cast), large serving of non-fat yogurt (two flavors: one brown, the other white with blue swirls) held aloft in one hand. Tita squawking as usual (All self’s relatives incapable of being in a public place without calling attention to themselves).

Then, self returned home (while Tita ferried Dearest Mum to her next appointment: a sleep-over with friend in Hillsborough), fell asleep, and now it is 6:20 a.m.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

“Abominable” Movie & 2nd NYTBR Post of the Evening!

Self watching an abominable Bigfoot movie called — self kids you not — “Abominable.” And the Bigfoot has just reached a big hairy paw (that looks something like Chewbacca’s) through a bathroom window where nubile teenage woman is taking a shower. Much screaming, much breaking of glass ensues. The only witness is a paraplegic neighbor who’s being severely over-medicated by his psychotic male nurse. In the meanwhile, Lance Henriksen (Yes, Lance Henrikson — the actor who played a cop in the first “Terminator” and Bishop in “Aliens”), wanders the woods with a rifle, gets eaten up in a jiffy.

But, self digresses too much. The real reason for this post is — tra-la! — self has just pulled another issue of the New York Times Book Review from her humongous pile of stuff! And this one is the issue of 4 May!

Without further ado, the list of books self is interested in reading after perusing abovementioned issue:

(1) After reading Jonathan Spence’s review of Mo Yan’s new novel, Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out:

Mo Yan’s new novel, Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out

(2) After reading Helen Schulman’s review of Isabel Fonseca’s novel, Attachment:

Isabel Fonseca’s Attachment

(3) After reading Francine Prose’s review of Wang Anyi’s “extraordinary” The Song of Everlasting Sorrow: A Novel of Shanghai:

Wang Anyi’s The Song of Everlasting Sorrow: A Novel of Shanghai

(4) After reading Liesl Schillinger’s review of Yian Lanke’s new novel, Serve the People!:

Yian Lanke’s new novel, Serve the People!

(5) After reading Andrew Ferguson’s review of Tony Horwitz’s new book, A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World:

Tony Horwitz’s A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World

(6) After reading Amy Finnerty’s review of Nikolai Grozni’s memoir, Turtle Feet: The Making and Unmaking of a Buddhist Monk:

Nikolai Grozni’s memoir, Turtle Feet: The Making and Unmaking of a Buddhist Monk

(On flat screen HDTV, two girls down — only three more to go!!)

(7) After reading Alison McCulloch’s review of Michelle de Kretser’s latest novel, The Lost Dog:

Michelle de Kretser’s latest novel, The Lost Dog

( 8 ) After reading David Margolick’s review of Benny Morris’ 1948: A History of the First Arab-Israeli War:

Benny Morris’ 1948: A History of the First Arab-Israeli War

(9) After reading Jennifer Gilmore’s review of Alyse Myers’ Who Do You Think You Are? A Memoir:

    Mommie Dearest, a memoir about what it’s like to have Joan Crawford as a Mum
    Alyse Myers’ Who Do You Think You Are? A Memoir

(10) After reading Marilyn Stasio’s Crime column:

    Tom Rob Smith’s first novel, “about a serial killer in Stalinist Russia,” Child 44
    Kjell Eriksson’s The Demon of Dakar, and two of his earlier crime novels, The Princess of Burundi and The Cruel Stars of the Night

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