Good morning. Hello. How are you? #488

Weekend chores, Assorted neighborhood dramas, gardening, Brother Arnold is doing well, Pfizer vaccine trial results for children 5-12, Joe Manchin sucks, Amazon Pharmacy Question, I miss winter.

Well good morning, fine friend. How are you this lovely Monday morning? Ready to face the week? Have a good weekend? Well I sure do hope so. I hope you had a productive and relaxing weekend. Got a lot of stuff done and got nothing done. Fitter. Happier. More productive, &c &c.

I got some stuff done this weekend. Made a successful trip to the Asian grocery, that was fun. No new Kit Kat flavors but I stocked up on the Whole Wheat Biscuit flavor and two of the Green Tea flavors. Also got a bunch more bamboo, a big ole bag of fresh bean sprouts, some shaoxing wine, dark soy sauce, chili paste, hot sesame oil, rice flour and glutinous rice flour, and some more noodles. Nice haul. Very exciting. Then I came home and moved a giant rug from my studio in the basement to the third floor storage closet that… hurt. That was a lot of effort. It was a really big rug.

But I figured I was on a roll so after that I moved the giant box for my new treadmill from the garage down to my studio using the hand truck, except for the part where I had to get it inside, I had to actually lift the whole box that was maybe a mistake, but I used my knees and it does not seem to have worsened my poor leg injury, which is still healing nicely, bruise almost gone. I got the treadmill assembled this weekend, too, took a bunch of help from my wife and two tries because, you know, cliches. And then I had to look up on the internet how to bypass the bullshit “required” paid membership to some online fitness club that I don’t want and it said nothing about when purchasing the thing or in the glowing Wirecutter review. I was preparing to be right and proper pissed when I found a bunch of Youtube videos instructing on the very simple bypass, so that’s done and now I have a sweet treadmill in my office because last winter I got absolutely no exercise and I vowed to never do that again. It’s in the middle of the room, so it was a bitch to get plugged in, but I managed, except now I have one of those ugly cable runner cover things on my floor, but at least it matches and it’s in a place where no one can see. Also getting rid of the box and all of the packaging material was a bitch.

Someone hit a deer with a car in our neighborhood, it is very sad. Our neighbor found it, having dragged itself into the woods and onto its property. There are so many deer around here and I love them because I am a sap but yeah you gotta drive slow they can jump out at you at any time. And of course now our neighborhood email list is going gangbusters with talk about speed bumps and the like, but I doubt we’ll actually do it. I’m sure it was a delivery driver, we got a couple speed demons in the hood but the worst and vast majority of the fast cars are the delivery people. Oh and our neighbor showed up, this nice old lady who lives next door who we never see. She showed up yesterday morning in her nightgown, somehow locked herself out of her house and needed to borrow our giant ladder. I offered to help her bring it back to her house but she refused, so off she went. My friend Doug said “Rick the old lady is gonna climb up the ladder in her nightgown? You sentenced her to death.” But luckily she returned the ladder later in the day so I guess all is well.

Oh and some car — maybe the same car! — smashed some of the giant protective boulders that some of our neighbors use to keep cars off of their grass. Just shoved the boulder a good three feet must have been a huge impact. No debris, though, thus thwarting Encyclopedia Rick and Emma Drew from solving the mystery.

Lotta exciting neighborhood drama going on this week, let me tell you.

OH and Emma found a terrifying snake that looked almost like a copperhead but in the end nope. Just a ribbon snake. But boy, that sucker was huge.

I did some gardening, and harvested a ton of peppers, just so many. And I could have harvested more, I just stopped. A lot of my gardening this year failed, but the peppers, man. They have produced gangbusters. Compost is lovely. Still too hot to plant the snow peas seeds. Anyway, here’s this week’s gardening video, it is very short:

Also harvested enough green beans for a lovely dish of sauteed green beans and they were so good. Big, long, yard beans. Yummy. And got enough tomatoes this week for two lovely salads. Mmmm yay yummy veggies.

I feel like I got more than that done this weekend didn’t I? Oh I shredded six buckets of cardboard – virtually every box in the recycling pile. Out of like 30 boxes, only two were so covered in tape or other gunk that they were un-shreddable. All of that cardboard is going into the compost or into the bottom of the new Birdies beds, if and when they ever get off of their container ship sitting offshore of the Port of Los Angeles. But when they do get here, I am ready.

I’ve been teaching Jane the words “chagrinned” and “catharsis” and it’s going just great. When I drop something or make a dumb little mistake, she always asks how I’m feeling, and she would ask if I was sad and I needed some word to explain to her that I wasn’t super sad but it was but a wee momentary bummer, so we’re going with “chagrinned.” And, of late, when she’s done with a tantrum, and she’s ready to be happy again, she’s lost that baby ability to just immediately switch her emotions on a dime. Now it takes a few minutes to go from sad to happy and she doesn’t like it, and she says “what is Jane feeling?” over and over. So we’re going with “catharsis.” Why not. It seems like it’s just as easy to teach a kid a big word than a small one, may as well go with something a bit more accurate. Human emotions are so varied, feels like we need names for like sixty of them instead of the four or five she knew already.

There’s this Massachusettsan composer guy who’s been re-arranging old shaker hymns, and he was working with Brother Arnold from Sabbathday Lake, one of the last three Shakers in the world, on these hymns, as well as a hipster choir from Seattle. Anyway, in August the Library of Congress published a video on YouTube of their collective efforts, and the video shows a fair amount of footage from Sabbathday Lake as well as footage of Brother John, who is looking hale and hearty. I think Brother Arnold may well be sticking around for a while. Anyway, it’s a pretty good video. And I added “Brother Arnold Shaker” to my Google Alerts. Gotta keep an eye on those wacky Shakers.

Pfizer announced this morning the data from their clinical trial of the COVID vaccine for children 5-12 and it is all very promising. Now we need them to prep the application for emergency use and get it into the hands of the FDA, and then we need the FDA to approve it. If all that goes as quickly for Children as it did for adults, we could see a new tranche of kids getting the vaccine by late October. This is, however, not a guarantee, there has been a little bit of rumbling about being “extra careful” about kids (“for the children”) but I suspect the pressure from parents will be intense. At any rate, Pfizer’s still on time from their predictions earlier this year. Supposedly the trial for children 6 months to 5 years will be ready in the next month or two, then the same wait while they prep the application and the FDA gives emergency use authorization but please please please can we get this wrapped up by December? I’m ready. I’m ready.

Here is some Joe Manchin news if you wanna get your blood boiling: Joe Manchin made over a million dollars off of coal last year and he’s heading the senate committee drafting our climate plan. And ultra responsible, trustworthy, earnest, and not-at-all-corrupt Joe Manchin thinks we should wait until 2022 to pass any infrastructure bill because he is super smart and a good person and not at all a dick captured by corporate interests. Also his daughter is behind the epi-pen scandal.

Emma has begun her halloween decorating in earnest. Our dining room looks like a dungeon now. I maintain this is a bit too early, but also, halloween decorations are kind of fun, big American suburban houses are dumb, and the decor is all the same and why not do something ridiculous with it. I’ll take some pictures for you guys tomorrow, maybe. Maybe Emma’s halloween decorating deserves to be chronicled on the internet in the annals of GMHHAY. It really is quite impressive.

Does anyone use Amazon pharmacy? I need to get this Wegovy drug and it’s a giant pain and there are backlogs and CVS is ridiculously unhelpful and it’s a giant problem and a friend in a similar predicament alerted me to the fact that Amazon has it in stock, and of course, even if they don’t have it in stock, Amazon is much better than CVS at, like, you know, managing a queue and letting you order it and just get it when it ships to you, instead of CVS, who is making me call them sporadically at random intervals and offering no help other than “try again.” It is maddening. But, like, you gotta sign up for Amazon pharmacy. So, has anyone done this? I am scared of things on the internet. Advice is appreciated.

I miss winter. I got a fleeting sniff of spruce somewhere, somehow, and all these winter emotions and feelings came flooding back. We don’t really get winter here. I mean, don’t get me wrong, that is nice, and, you know, I don’t really miss winter, but also I do. I want to live somewhere that has a winter like North Carolina for most of the year but then has one, maybe two, good solid snow storms that shut everything down – like a foot or more. They have “snowstorms” that shut things down here, but it’s only like an inch or two of snow, it’s the ice that gets them it’s not the same thing. I suppose with global warming and me not going out every single night anymore, Massachusetts and New England would be just the thing. Mulled wine hot cider chestnuts roasting on an open fire and exploding and killing you god that song specifically calls out the exact most lethal way to roast chestnuts it really is crazy we sing it.

All right let’s do a mix I’ve been working on this one for a while, it’s a mix of New Wave Obscurities. Of course some people might consider one or two of these not obscure, or maybe even all of them who knows, but, you know. Given that my wife makes me listen to XM First Wave every day, I was ready for a batch of new wave songs that you’d never hear on First Wave. I had plans to make our own first wave station using an old mac and whatnot, but it’s proving very hard to program Apple Music’s smart playlists in the correct manner, with heavy, medium and light rotation and station IDs and the like. Anyway, this mix is a good time. I would say maybe half of these I knew before I set out on this quest, which has taken most of the year. Kissing the Pink, Big in Japan, BoxCar, Macca, C Cat Trance, Gary Numan, Colourox, Camouflage. I knew of Chris and Cosey and Sparks but didn’t know those songs. The rest are from this year.

Okay have a lovely Monday.