Aaron asked me to post since he’s driving, but he predicts that, in light of Senator Larry Craig’s “disorderly conduct” arrest, the Senator will soon announce that it was really his drug and/or alcohol problem that forced him to attempt to solicit gay sex from an undercover officer in a public men’s room. I would add that the rehab announcement is sure to be followed by the revelation that he was also molested by a priest. The formula must be followed, after all.
As this was brokenbryan‘s last weekend before shipping off to Canuckistan for school, the three of us spent all weekend hanging out and going places. Friday night after the wall of storms swept through the area, we got our sushi on at Little Tree in Royal Oak. Aaron and I, with much self-restraint, limited ourselves to one Mad Chef roll each. A Mad Chef roll is basically a California roll that has been tempura-battered and fried. We’ve never found it at any other sushi place, and we’ve tried. Usually when you get a tempura roll the shrimp, or whatever, inside the roll is battered, but not the outside. We dropped by the Starbuck’s at 15 Mile & Coolidge to get a food coma antidote and to let Bryan say goodbye to the staff there, since he occasionally took shifts at that store. We were too full and lame to go anywhere else, so we vegged at home and watched The Fellowship of the Ring on TNT, which was showing the trilogy over three nights in HD. It was nice, but way too many commercials, and from the way they were hawking them every two minutes, you’d think they only had two shows: The Closer and Saving Grace. Enough already!
Saturday after his last workday at Starbuck’s, we went to the Gibraltar Trade Center in Mt. Clemens, which is a giant indoor weekend flea market. There’s also a location in Taylor. Every form of kitsch, schlock, tchotchke, and NASCAR merchandise can be found there, in addition to the largest public display of chromosome damage in Michigan. I had spent plenty of time in the Taylor location when I was friends with/dating Matt, as he had a booth there to sell his candles, so I was no stranger to its “unique atmosphere”. The grub from the food court was surprisingly good, though. Bryan made an impulse purchase of roller shoes, but he never did find a 5 year old to teach him how to skate on them. Maybe he’ll find a tutor in Canada.
Afterward we drove aimlessly around the Mt. Clemens area, down to Metro Beach, then down Gratiot Ave. to Jefferson Ave. in search of a waterside restaurant. We had to go all the way down to Detroit to find one, but we were seriously under-dressed for it, so we landed in Greektown instead. We tried Fishbone’s, but they had seriously raised their prices since the last time we were there, so we asked the waiter for a couple minutes before we decided on drinks, and slithered out the door when he left. New Hellas Cafe was much more reasonable, and tasty as always, followed by a stop at Astoria Pastry Shop for baklava and biscotti. The evening was concluded with The Two Towers.
Yesterday we decided to trek out to IKEA in Canton and left around 10:30am to try and beat some of the crowd. We just made it, and the crowd started streaming in about five minutes after we made it upstairs. Luckily it never got too crazy, but we didn’t manage to escape before spending $150. We got some glass globe accent lights to put under the side tables on both ends of the sectional, but I’m not sure if I like them yet. We also replaced the red rug under the coffee table with a new, heavier, red rug. The old one from Target was so light and stiff that it wouldn’t stay put and constantly buckled up. Finally got sick of straightening it several times a day. I got myself a small Money Tree plant for my desk at work, but forgot to grab it on my way to the doc’s this morning.
After IKEA, we spent about an hour walking around the Art on the Lake festival. As usual it was a mix of interesting yet expensive art that we weren’t going to drop hundreds of bucks on, and craft-type things that we wouldn’t be caught dead displaying in our home. We walked back, then Aaron wrote some work articles while Bry napped and I talked to Mom until her phone battery died. Dinner was carry-out from Red Robin and The Return of the King. Called it a night around 1:30am after Bry was done packing and we’d taken out all the trash.
I said my goodbyes this morning before leaving for the doc at 8:30, and Bry left at 10am to meet his parents in Windsor. He’s got to get his student visa before heading to Toronto and his new apartment. It’s good that his parents can drive with him, since there’s no other way he’d get the futon that my mom/we gave him there. So now the house is going to be much emptier and quieter (and cleaner! ;o)), but it’s going to be lonelier for awhile. He needed to leave to move forward with his life, and we were all getting on each others’ nerves more and more often as the summer progressed, but I’m still gonna miss him terribly. It hasn’t really hit me yet, since I left before he did, but I’m sure it will when I get home this evening.
After reading this interview with Madeleine Albright on the subject of religion and foreign policy, I thought about the subject of Jerusalem, possession of which has been a major issue dividing the Middle East for centuries.
So here’s a brutally simplistic scenario: What would happen to the region’s religio-political balance if Jerusalem were suddenly vaporized, and that its destruction was clearly and indisputably an impersonal act, such as a small asteroid impact? Furthermore, suppose that the entire area is rendered uninhabitable by radiation that does not extend beyond the original boundaries of the city?
Now, there’s nothing left to fight over but an unapproachable smoking hole. After the shock and mourning pass, what do you think the fallout would be?
I’d like to think that it would eventually have a positive effect; that, on that subject at least, the parties involved would have the fight taken out of them and some kind of real peace would begin to emerge.
Realistically, I think somebody would just find another excuse to keep the hostilities alive, such as arguing about who still controls the site where Jerusalem once stood, despite the fact that no one could enter it for many years.
I’m certainly no expert on the area and its history, although I like to think I’m somewhat more well-informed than the general American public. Like I said, the idea is very simplistic (and a bit juvenile), but it’s a satisfyingly direct resolution to the problem: If a place or thing is the cause of such unresolvable conflict between multiple parties, remove it entirely so no one can have it.
This weekend was pretty eventful. I had Friday off due to the Summer Hours program at work, where every other week I work 10 hour shifts Mon-Thur, then have Friday off. The long days are a killer, but the three-day weekend makes it worth it.
My original plan to slump in my office chair and play City of Heroes all day Friday was foiled by a long list of errands I wrote myself. It felt good to be productive instead of wasting all day saving the world, though.
Saturday was roadster_guy‘s birthday and after sleeping late and having breakfast we caught the 1:20 showing of The Bourne Ultimatum, which rocked. We had just rented The Bourne Supremacy using WideOpenWest’s video-on-demand on Thursday(?), so it was fresh in our minds when we saw the third one. Afterwards we worked on my chainmail coat until brokenbryan came home from work, and headed down to mrimp and odysseyseven‘s place in Detroit for dinner at Xochimilco’s in Mexican Town. I hadn’t been there in years, and it’s still some of the best Mexican food I’ve had.
For dessert we had cake and ice cream, and Aaron opened his presents: a 3-stage electric knife sharpener from me; a Starbucks gift card from Bryan; a bottle of wine and an as-yet unnamed gift from the h’otters. The Wusthof knives Aaron has were already, in the words of the saleswoman at Crate & Barrel, “Bedy, bedy charp!” but I think this sharpener has them approaching monomolecular width.
The biggest event was after Bryan had left for home, as he had to be up at 6 for work. I was flopped on the bed on the phone with Mom, and Eric came in to prepare his surprise for Jamie. He took the ring we had shopped for on Thursday, put it in the mouth of Archie, the otter puppet we had bought them as a souvenir at the St. Louis arch, and took it back to the living room. He showed Jamie and said, “Archie has something he wants to show you.” He dropped the ring into his hand and Jamie just stared at it for a few seconds in confusion until Eric dropped to one knee and said, “Will you make me the happiest man in the world?” Then the shock set in, and Jamie was literally speechless for a good five seconds. Fortunately, he recovered enough to say “yes”. 🙂
Yesterday was low key and spent mostly on chainmail, the gym, laundry, and some shopping. Bryan and I went to Somerset to spend the Express gift card he’d given me. I tried on six pairs of jeans in various sizes and styles but, as their pants are all made for skinny twinks, none of them looked good on me. I did end up with a nice grey zip-up ribbed sweater, so it wasn’t a total loss. I’ll get a pair of jeans from Gap, since I know those look good. Of course I had to duck into the Apple store, which was packed, to look at the new iMacs. They’re pretty damn spiffy, even though I only got about 5 minutes on them before Bryan’s boredom drove me out. I couldn’t decide if I liked the glossy display or not, but in our office it wouldn’t be an issue. The only direct light that would hit the screen would come from the window in the bedroom directly behind me, and closing the blind takes care of that.
This week is a regular work week, but after a quitting time of 5:45pm all last week, 3:45 seems like a half day. I gave $5 to the United Way fundraiser at work to have our CIO “slimed”, Nickolodeon-style, at some upcoming event. In exchange I got a certificate allowing me to wear jeans the rest of the week, so after the gym I’ll hit the Gap to get a new pair. As of now, I have one. (I’ll also get to play with the iMacs a bit more without a time crunch. I wanted to try out the new iWork apps a little.)
I usually go to Rotten Tomatoes for my movie reviews, and the Tomatometer is rarely wrong (Starsky & Hutch being a notable exception. 72%? Seriously?).
What’s really fun is reading the reviews of the truly awful films that get shoveled out the Hollywood door. Sometimes what the critics say about a bad flick is more entertaining than anything in the movie itself, so when I saw that Daddy Day Camp got an abysmal 02%, I had to read the verdicts. This is the one that nearly made me spew water at the screen:
“Some would argue that kids aren’t as jaded as adults, and will enjoy an agonizingly unfunny experience like Daddy Day Camp just fine. Using the same rationale, you could feed them Alpo.” — Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
Some other gems:
Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever (0%)
“You’ll have more fun setting fire to yourself in the parking lot. You’ll be more entertained getting hit by a bus.” — Rob Vaux, Flipside Movie Emporium
Alone in the Dark (1%)
“The three stars have seen better days, but I’d like to think they could still do something classier and more dignified than this. Like gay porn.” — Rob Vaux, again
Battlefield Earth (3%)
“Watching Battlefield Earth is to a movie-watching experience what having a yeast infection is to having sex.” — Mark Bourne, DVDJournal.com
“Apple has made it possible for purchasers of iLife ‘08 to download iMovie 6 HD.
The move has been made as the new version of iMovie in iLife ‘08 lacks some backwards compatibility and many users seem to prefer the older version.
iMovie 6 HD is a 154.6MB download available to purchasers of iLife ‘08.”