Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Celebrating Independence Day

It was a nice day, actually. The weather was perfect, partly cloudy and about 80 degrees. We went for a bike ride, to the Capitol Building in St. Paul and then down to the river to go home. Everything is so lush and green here now, I love it. It's so thick I can't imagine winter. I'm still amazed by the changing seasons here, even after living here for 10 years. I grew up in California and Arizona, and the weather is pretty consistently the same all year long in both places, with only slight variations. What I like about living here is that you don't take your surroundings for granted, because they completely transform in each season. It's why the first warm day in spring here is so crazy with people streaming outside. They just burst out of their homes and drink in the sun like they haven't seen or felt it for months...which they haven't, really.

So the Capitol Building in St. Paul is 100 years old this year, woohoo. They had a special celebration on the lawns out front, so we had a picnic lunch there before riding down to the river. We missed the all-volunteer choir singing patriotic songs but were there for some of the "talent" on stage, which seemed like amateur night. There was one duo in particular that was really awful--The Larpenteurs. The name is a play on a main street in St. Paul of the same name, and they sang songs by The Carpenters. Badly. Oi. They started with a few bars of "We've Only Just Begun" and I wished immediately they hadn't. This was followed by segues into several other songs, equally horrific. Medleys, ew. J. commented he heard A Mighty Wind blowing.

In the evening the doofus who lives next door set off bunches of stupid fireworks in the street, and it's a wonder he didn't set something on fire, like himself. He had those screaming kind, which I hate and Cocoa did not appreciate either. She hid under my desk while I was sitting at it. J. went to see the professional (legal) fireworks down by the river, and I stayed home and soothed Cocoa and watched The Closer, a new cop show on TNT with Kyra Sedgwick as a Deputy Police Chief in L.A who's just transferred from Atlanta to handle high-profile murder cases and she's none too welcome. So far it's pretty good, although a bit disheartening that most of her male colleagues are such shitheads. I tried watching the other new cop show, The Inside, but that was just too freakin' gory and dark and depressing and creepy. Serial killer stuff. And the premise is that Peter Coyote is the head of this elite FBI unit and he exploits the weaknesses of his staff to catch the killers. A bit over the top. And gory crime scenes! Jeez. We watch the series House, about a curmedgeonly brilliant doctor, and they always have these warnings at the beginning about content may not suitable, blah blah blah, and we're always left wondering at the end what the unsuitable content was...whereas The Inside is ALL unsuitable as far as I'm concerned. I think The Inside has warnings as well, but when you start watching it, you wonder if the warning shouldn't have been a lot stronger...it's the stuff of nightmares.

Another new cop show I like that's coming back for a second season on July 11 is Murder in Suburbia. Not one but TWO female leads!! And they're funny, instead of crabby like Cagney and Lacey.

Okay, enough with the TV. Time to go read some more of this weirdly fascinating book I got for the camping trip, The Egyptologist. It's all in letters so far and that's a hard thing to pull off, to not get boring. But it's mystery as yet how all the characters fit together in this strange adventure, and I do like a mystery...

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