Tuesday, September 26

And they've cut their hair

One really can't believe that these are the same three kids who played Harry, Ron and Hermione in the first two Harry Potter films, but here they are, growing like weeds, on the set of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. The film won't be released until July 13, 2007, and they are still filming, as far as I know, but these are the first pics I've seen of the cast of this chapter in the movies. I'm glad to see that the costume designers have continued to allow them to move about outside of their Hogwarts robes, and dressing like normal kids!
The site I got this image from also has pictures of Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge, one of the worst nasties that Harry comes across in the books. She looks creepy, and since I still hate her for making Harry write lines, it's all working for me already.

Monday, September 25

If it's baked, it should be okay, right?

I've never been a big fan of spinach. I don't like it on it's own, and tend to shy away from the spinach salads that are out there. Really, I'll only eat it if I don't know it's in something yummy I'm already eating, or if it's baked in a wonderful dish with artichoke and cheese. Yes, I speak of the amazingly fabulous spinach/artichoke dip that has become quite popular over the last several years. When home in Cali last week, I was able to get this dip at the California Pizza Kitchen, which offers a tasty example, right at the very beginning of this spinach-and-e.coli hysteria. Obviously, none of us got the disease, so that particular dip was fine.
Last night, having forgotten all about this wretched disease and vegetable ban, Brian and I stopped at Mimi's Cafe, which offers an even better dip than CPK. Imagine my disappointment when I ordered it, and the waitress told me that they're not serving the dip because of the spinach issues.
Damn it. Now this whole thing is beginning to affect the satisfaction of my cravings, and I will NOT have that! Someone, somewhere, figure this out and get the good spinach back into restaurants! Queso dip will keep me quiet for only so long!

U2 is going to play the half-time show on Monday Night Football tonight. The game will be a good one, simply because of the emotions involved in the Saints returning to New Orleans for their first home game since Hurricane Katrina, and I think any and all tributes will be very touching. I actually feel bad for Atlanta, should they win. Of course, every team wants to win, but who wants to be the team that sucks the breath out of New Orleans by beating their team in their newly restored stadium? Forget the fact that everyone in the nation who isn't a Falcons fan will be cheering for the Saints. (I know that I will be.) Best of luck to both teams!

Saturday, September 23

Gotta get the DVR again

It is, if you can believe it, finally cooling down here. We're able to open up the windows at night and in the morning (until about 10), and there was a decent cooling breeze when I took Oliver out for his walk last night.
I read in this week's Entertainment Weekly about Martin Scorsese's new movie coming out, The Departed. I won't lie to you, one of the main reasons why B and I are interested in checking out this film is because it was shot entirely on location in Boston. We're looking forward to seeing the sights we know, and getting all melancholy about the crazy streets, lack of parking and thick accents. (All things that, when we were there, drove us nuts ... except the accents. Loved them.) Anyway, the movie stars Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio, as a mob boss and two double-crossing informants, respectively. I really just kinda dig the ad on TV, too, where we see the Prudential Center on the gun. I used to live really close to that building. That's just neat.
Also, if you can believe it, the Sandra Bullock/Keanu Reeves movie, The Lake House, comes out on DVD next Tuesday. It's going to the top of my Netflix list, that's for sure, since I never saw it in the theater.
Also out on DVD soon, Oct. 3, actually, is one of my most favorite Disney movies, The Little Mermaid. I find myself wishing the weeks away so I can buy it and make Brian sit through it while I recite dialogue and sing along with Ariel and Sebastian. Every time I see the commercial for it, I get a little bit happier inside!
What else? Oh, yes, television. The Office was hysterical, and Jericho was about what I expected: fair acting, decent premise, but probably won't last the season before CBS yanks it. Next week though, Brian and I look forward to Heroes and one of my faves, Gilmore Girls, which returns on Tuesday night. With all this other TV, I'm kinda glad that Lost doesn't start for another 10 days. I don't think I could handle another hour of good stuff spilling forth from my Samsung so soon... (which is why, yes, I'm ordering the DVR box this week.)

Wednesday, September 20

TV premiere week

Yeah, yeah, yeah. So it's been a few days. I've been here; where have you all been?
I remember kicking off this blog, somewhat, with my take on the new fall shows coming to television, and I'm happy to say that I'm continuing that tradition today. My first order of business tomorrow is to order DVR from Cox, because this is ridiculous. I'm afraid to say it, but there just may be too many good shows on TV right now.
It all started with Studio 60 on Monday night. It was exactly what I had hoped it would be, in that it was full of fast and snappy dialog, and the cast seemed to crackle through their lines and all that. We'll be sticking with that one; definitely.
Then, last night, Smith debuted. I'm always a big fan of the anti-hero. Like in Heat: I thought that Robert DeNiro's character was too smart for that ending, and that the whole movie was wasted on that character decision. But with Smith, we've got a group of thieves, murderers and cheaters that are intelligent, clever and unsympathetic, and that I will happily watch every week. Even the possibly bamboozled wife has a past and seems to know a whole lot more than anyone would give her credit. Yum.
Tonight, Brian wants to watch Jericho, the show about the town that seems to survive a nuclear explosion that's taken out the rest of the country, though that's just my guess on the plot. Skeet Ulrich is in it, which is usually a bit sketchy for me, but we'll see.
At any rate, the television, after a summer of silence, has again taken over our lives. And once Gilmore Girls (next Wednesday), Lost (Oct. 4), and Scrubs (tbd) return, I'll gladly become a slave to my remote again.

Thursday, September 14

And a dog named Clyde

I'm out in California this weekend for my baby shower. Lisa and Andrea are hosting it at Lisa's house, and I'm so excited about hanging out with everyone and getting some loot for the kid. Mom flew out to Arizona yesterday and we drove back to Camarillo today so we'd be able to take everything back to Ariz. in the car. I gotta tell you, even though I really like this car, I'm so done being in the vehicle for hours on end. Thank goddess that this is my last road trip until after the baby's born.
So what's the what lately? Been doing some work, doing some hanging out with the husband, been surfing the Internet. Not a whole lot is going on, which is, frankly, why the blog's been updated so rarely lately. I'll try to be better, since I know that for a bunch of you, this is how you keep up with my activities. (As I said, sadly lacking...)
So, I'm here, and this is a picture of Mom and Howie's new puppy, Clyde. A six-month-old Lhasa Apso, Clyde is proving to be difficult to potty-train -- though it's only been a week he's been here -- and seems to be quite docile and passive -- compared to Oliver, who's a freak of energy. Howie, as you can imagine, is over the moon in love already, and Mom is happy, but frustrated with pee on her floors again, and me, well, I just think he needs a haircut.

Friday, September 8

Yay picnic!

I'm a few days late, but here it is, the September avatar. I think we all know that my stomach looks far different than this image indicates right now. But it's all good my friends, let me live vicariously through the avatar, and imagine that this is still somewhat of a resemblance to me. Notice that she is still wearing a tank top (it's still hot here), and that the park looks nice and green (I'm already missing the look and feel of a New England autumn). This living in Arizona thing is going to take some getting used to!
I took the iBook in to the Mac specialists today, and should have the monster back on Monday. I'm having the hard drive replaced and upgraded, and the guy is less than optimistic about getting any data off the old one. Whatever. I guess we just call this a "life lesson," and hope that, from now on, we'll back up monthly. (I have GOT to find out how to do that.) At any rate, everyone thank Mom for being the ATM behind this fun disaster, okay? Two thumbs up for the lady who's made, and making, the last few weeks, and the upcoming few weeks, bearable for the poor, unemployed leeches that we are right now.
Did you know that the state of Massachusetts requires that you send them your old license plates when you move to a new state? It's a fact, and something that we took care of today. It was all in a series of car-related, moving-to-a-new-state requirements we fulfilled yesterday. Those tasks included a smog inspection on the car and time spent in the Motor Vehicle Department registering the car for Arizona. So now, officially, we've cut all ties with Massachusetts: all our random tax money and fees go to Arizona now. (FYI: vehicle registration in Mass., $41. Vehicle registration in Ariz., $226. Gotta love those red states.)

Thursday, September 7

Insert cheesy V.F. headline here

ITEM!: I dig Steve Irwin. I thought Crocodile Hunter was a cool-ass show, and enjoyed the fervor he brought to animal conservation. I thought he was one of those road-side warriors who didn't fear anything, especially the crocs, and that he was bulletproof. Sadly, we've all had to say goodbye to Irwin this week, courtesy of a stingray and one of the rarest undersea deaths reported. Here's hoping that his compassion, ambition to help animals, and desire to educate people will be carried on.
ITEM!: Paris Hilton was rung up on drunk driving charges. A rich girl like that should really be able to afford a taxi on the way home. No one ever claimed that she was a smart celebutante, but in this day and age, especially with her wallet and support staff, no one should ever be getting behind the wheel after a couple drinks. She chose poorly.
ITEM!: Leave it to one of my favorite magazines to shine the first spotlight on Suri Cruise. I admit to being excited for when this particular issue of Vanity Fair drops into my mailbox, if for any reason, so I can read more about Katie, who apparently spoke more than seven words in the article.
ITEM!: British Prime Minister Tony Blair has agreed to step down within the next year, due to pressure from his political party and the cluster that has become Iraq. It's a shame that resignation is so frowned upon here. Of course, should Bush step down, we're stuck with Cheney. Out of the frying pan, into the fire.
ITEM!: Is it weird that I'm so looking forward to the football season officially starting? There's nothing that signifies the arrival of fall more than teams meeting on the gridiron. You know, it's nice and cool in Boston already.

Friday, September 1

Art that stinks

Now, you know that I would be, by virtue of his ridiculous fanaticism, the last person to defend Tom Cruise or most anything he does. (You know that I love Katie Holmes, though she signed a deal with the devil, and the baby can't help who its parents are.) But today, I feel bad for Tom and Katie. So they haven't seen fit to allow their kid to be seen in public. That's their decision, and the world really should get a grip and leave them be.
At any rate, I think that the "sculptor" who did this piece of "artwork" on Suri Cruise's first bowel movement (the same guy who did the Britney-giving-birth-on-a-bearskin-rug statue), just needs to get a new gimmick and leave these people alone. His muse is disturbing to me. Who, really, thinks of these things? There's something wrong in this guy's head.
Also, a shout out to Arizona State's football team for kicking the s*it out of Northern Arizona University the other night. So our schedule, as of now, is rocking at 1-0. Sweet! We are Rose Bowl bound, my friends!!
Oh! We went to the ASU bookstore the other day. I've got to tell you, when did college freshmen get so young? I swear, 18 never looked so youthful to me as it did that afternoon. And here I am, an old woman who's been out of college for 10 years, looking around and marveling at what babies all these kids are. I bought a new hat.