July 19th, 2012


Accomplished? Or Not...

I would love this little suit for my own "Timmy the Monkey":

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The colon/semi-colon key on my keyboard here is sticky, and it takes two hands to get a colon typed. Grrr.

I have managed to do a little writing this week, although not as much as I should have done. (I'm not counting the writing I volunteered to do at work, re-writing articles for our "how-to" bible -- but I suppose it counts in some ways.)

I was given command of a... well, not exactly a trainee, although he's new to my area, so I'm having to train him -- but he is the absolute template for the Gen-X kids who are talented, intelligent, and thoroughly, terribly, annoyingly self-absorbed. Everyone "hates" him, are "picking on" him, are "mean" to him, he has a sense of entitlement that way outweighs his worth, he picks up things instantly but then gets bored and doesn't really give a crap so keeps asking idiotic questions, he tends to get up and wander around instead of just working, and he is positively INFURIATING. I was, apparently, chosen to be his keeper because I am, and I quote my supervisor here, "like the drill sergeant" who comes in and takes care of business and gets things accomplished. A compliment, surely, but since I just can't see myself like that, I was enormously surprised to find out I'm viewed that way.

A while back we were watching the Tony Awards and after seeing Mandy Patinkin appear to introduce the new "Evita" cast, and seeing same, Barb commented that there should be a whole category for "roles that Mandy Patinkin was better in." It is true that Ricky Martin is a great dancer and good singer, but he's just not Mandy Patinkin; same with Antonio Banderas (both in Evita)-- and we remembered a few years back, the revival of Sunday in the Park with George; the guy playing George in that one was good, but he was no Mandy Patinkin. Funny, too, as we thought about him as an actor, as well -- he was playing a damaged, rude, irascible, brilliant doctor (with a long-suffering best buddy) YEARS before House went on the air. Sure, I know he's reportedly VERY hard to work with and a bit of a "diva," but damn, the man can act (and sing).

About the only replacement for him I've ever seen that I liked better is Joe Mantegna in Criminal Minds -- and he's playing such a different character anyway, it's a totally different approach.

When we walk Bo around the park in the early evenings, we see all manner of birds getting settled for the night, and one evening I saw what looked like a small hawk. I thought perhaps it was one of the the kestrels we know live there, but Barb said Kestrels were more active in the morning and during the day. She commented it looked rather more swallow-like, and the other night there were several of them swooping about in the dusky post-sunset light, so I made a mental note of their markings and looked them up. Not a swallow, but often mistaken for same-- they are common nighthawks, more closely related to the nightjars. Almost driven to extinction in the east because they're ground-nesters, but very common out west. Distinguished by the white patches on the wings, which was what I noticed about them.

I love birds. I'm sometimes astonished at the number of birds supposedly common around here that I've never seen... (and then sometimes gloriously cheered by finding ones I didn't know lived here and yet, there they are!) The real shame is that cardinals don't come into the Phoenix Valley anymore -- I'd love to see one in my yard.