Letters to Holly

Monday, April 30


We enjoyed the suddenly great weather with an outdoor Mexican dinner Friday night. I got up early Saturday to work on the garden. I chopped up a good quarter of it while listening to the NPR lineup (Morning Edition, Car Talk, Wait Wait). I hit dirt after days of chopping through clay. I found wood planks, no doubt used as a border for an herb patch or maybe composting. I also found chunks of concrete which looked like parts of an old driveway. I bet this was from the first homeowners before the drive was paved. But why bury it here?

We grabbed pub lunch and started talking through various marital matters, and unfortunately this led to an hourlong Serious Talk about things that were percolating between us. I'll take the heat for this one. There were comments I should have made earlier, and I didn't deal with them well. But we cleared the air and realized we had interpreted things distinctly, and then gave mutual apologies and that was that. Then we worked on school papers for the majority of the day. Your Sis had the hungers for pizza, and we grabbed two movies as well.

The Devil Wears Prada is a film I wanted to see when it first came out. It looked snarky and quick, and I worship at the feet of Meryl Streep. I was worried that it would be a teen girl's film, but while it wisely holds off on the language and sex, it isn't hollow. It is light. It's almost confectionery, but it's not stupid. I enjoyed it. I didn't buy Anna Hathaway as the former editor-in-chief of a major university daily newspaper, but she doesn't have much heavy lifting here. She doesn't have to act, just react. Streep gets exactly the right amount of screen time for her role. I wouldn't own the film, but I'm glad to have seen it.

A Scanner Darkly is the second animated Richard Linkletter film after Waking Life. It's a nifty small scifi film built mostly on scenes of people who sound like they're improvising their dialogue, and that degree of affecting performance goes a long, long way. I like Robert Downey Jr. as an actor, but if he were onscreen any longer in the film, I'd want to strangle him. Keanu Reeves does well as does Winona Ryder, but Woody Harrelson almost steals the film with some sharp comedy work. The animation is done on top of filmed performances, and it does add to the feel of the film. It also looks a lot like my cover work during the Greenville days (except I didn't outline in black). This is good, heady stuff.

I unfortunately woke up early Sunday morning (at 4:44, oddly) with what felt like a wisdom tooth in my eye. It took half an hour to get it out from my upper eyelid, despite using water, contact lenses, contact solution, a Q-tip, and my fingers. I don't know what it was. I couldn't get back to sleep, and I killed time until 7, when I went to finish my tilling.

We decided to only dig up half the garden. I finished my half a little before 9. Almost two hours of digging left a 29 x 6 foot mound that stretched at least 8 inches down. I raked all that back down to level the dirt. Once again, gardening builds muscles. Seeing development on an anatomy model is one thing, finding it on yourself is another. Also, I am sore as hell. We lunched on leftover, and I bought groceries while Your Sis tackled more school stuff. Later in the day, I mowed and weeded the yard. I am beat as beat can be, even this morning. We bought seed potatoes to plant maybe this week. We also got chicken wire to lay down around the garden. Supposedly cats won't walk on it. I also want to plant catnip away from the garden to distract them.

I killed time playing more "Guitar Hero," including a Rage Against the Machine song that I forgot about. I love this game. I'm convinced I can move almost laterally to playing real guitar when I finish this.

I filled up the gas tank today for only the second time. I got 440 miles on less than 13 gallons. Also got my crackuccino.

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