Lipton Cup of Zinnia

Thought it was beyond time I shared a collection of flower pictures I took back in early October. That is near the end of flower picture season or Flowertography Season as we call it around Photography 139 Worldwide Headquarters. Usually you can get a couple of flowers to make it until early November, depending on when the first hard frost comes, but by early October, most flowers have called it a year.

Here are some flower pictures:


A Garden of Love

Soul Expansion - 2020

Girl in the Blue Skirt - 2020

Girl in the Blue Skirt - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

Digging for God - 2020

The thermometer has barely seen the plus side of zero in a week. I bet even those of you that hate my flower pictures are missing Flowertography Season about now.

32 thoughts on “Lipton Cup of Zinnia”

  1. So sorry to co-opt this beautiful collection’s comments, but the entry on which we discussed “Emily In Paris” is closed for comments. I just watched the first two episodes last night (as Clarice wasn’t available yet), so I wanted to give you my quick commentary.

    It’s really cute, and it’s an excellent recommendation for actually seeing Paris. Unlike Moulin Rouge!, which I presume was entirely on a sound stage. However – I do have to say, it’s funny how you can sort of take a well-educated stab at what’s going to happen in a Darren Star production:

    – There is going to be a saucy lead female who is sort of unlikeable in a lot of ways. She’s going to learn and grow while staying true to herself.
    – He’s going to make sure they use really specific female in-jokes that seem to push the edge while not actually having anything relatable to do with being a female in them, usually >= one per episode. In the first episode, there was the phone call with her boyfriend – I can’t imagine a lot of women talking about their insecurities (or men wanting to hear it) in a fever pitch mid-phone sex. And the sex toy blowing out the electricity – I mean, that’s not really relatable on an actual level to women, it’s more just a “ha ha, that makes me cringe” thing but not actually about anything anyone’s likely experienced. Same with the Vaga-Jeune stuff in the second episode – what exactly is so specifically empowering about “the vagina is not masculine,” and specifically so that Mrs. Macron would retweet it? It’s sort of faux-feminism, but without actually taking any stand that really matters.
    – Saucy female talk followed by overly loud public laughing.

    That doesn’t at all kill the show for me, it just is predictable, if that makes sense. But here are my predictions for the show:

    – All of her coworkers besides her boss are going to come to like her. There will be some ultimate friction (probably around the perfume dude), and either her boss will end up loving her or getting fired

    – Emily will end up hooking up with someone (either the downstairs neighbor or the perfume dude, smart money is on the neighbor), but then her boyfriend will end up coming to surprise her and there will be a big decision to be made

    – I feel like the mom from 13 Reasons Why (and a million other things) is going to become an issue at some point. I don’t feel like she would have been in the show for two minutes and then gone away.

  2. Yeah, someday I might turn off that 30 day Comment limitation, but I think my Spam filters need to get better first.

    I’d almost forgot about EMILY IN PARIS already. But since you’ve watched 2 episodes, the second one is the public urinal episode.

    I won’t tell you if you are right or wrong on any of these, but it is a romantic comedy, so there isn’t anything that is particularly groundbreaking here. You can probably see most things coming from a mile away.

    I did watch CLARICE last night. I would say it was solid but not spectacular. Like most shows, I’m sure it will take a few episodes to find its footings. I think the pure West Virginia accent on the actress kinda comes and goes. But I set the DVR to record the series, so I’ll follow along for awhile.

    It does look like a CBS show, though. That is for sure.

  3. The third episode sure was the public urinal episode. It looks like a UPS drop box; where does the pee go? Down to the bottom and sits? Does it connect to drainpipes? I’m not going to get close enough to see, but I don’t understand why you’d just have a metal box filled with urine. That seems how the plague started. Or similar enough, anyway.

    I got through the end of the first season. Didn’t take long, at a couple a day. You’re correct – my guesses changed as the show went on, but were pretty well correct as I pivoted.

    I just caught up yesterday with Clarice. You’re correct – it certainly wasn’t “Silence” or anything. I think it’s interesting that they are giving her an ally so early on the VICAP force, based off of one interaction – but they have to do that for dynamics, I know, especially as a foil for Krendler. You’re correct, sometimes that Appalachia goes out the window.

    There’s something about CBS crime shows (of which I have only admittedly seen a few CSIs, and just a scene here or there in the background at my parents’ of other shows). The air sounds more empty or something, and there is a weird photography style? And they really like to show those dead girls, and how women react to them. They’re certainly consistent.

  4. I assume the public urinal just empties straight into the river. I doubt there is a tank below it collecting urine, like a port-a-potty. If it doesn’t drain straight into the river, then I bet it drains straight into a sewer below.

    What do you mean you aren’t going to get close enough to find out? You’re a welcher!

    And that isn’t how the plague started. Not even close.

    I’ve never seen a full episode of any CBS crime show, but I definitely know the look. I was surprised that they solved the first crime so fast. I thought that each killer would elude them for awhile. And in that way, it did feel like a typical show. I thought it was almost laughable that the senator had become Attorney General and that she was going to stamp out “serial killer”.

    If that was possible, and it isn’t, you need to start with more social safety net programs. You aren’t going to be able to that from the law enforcement side. But our policing model is a joke anyways. But what would you expect from a system that grew out of escaped slave catchers.

    That being said, I really hope that it isn’t one of those deals where they catch the guy every single episode. If so, I’ll just watch re-runs of COLUMBO.

    I was glad that they brought back her friend from the FBI academy. It is going to be odd without have Hannibal involved. It is too bad that the rights to that is so messed up. I gather that they might try to use the character, without ever using the name. Hence, the Bride of Frankenstein stuff.

    I think the 4th episode is when we’ll really know something. About if it is going to be something worth watching. But at this point, it definitely is no HANNIBAL.

  5. Aw, man, I hope it’s not the river. Let’s hope for the sewer system. That has to sound really weird, I would assume. We’ll be going down into the Catacombs (that’s really my main thing I want to do while I’m there), which are sewer-adjacent, so I’ll scout and listen for tinkle. (It looks like they’re trying out planters? https://www.treehugger.com/crack-down-al-fresco-peeing-paris-gives-compost-generating-public-urinals-try-4866970 )

    I mean – I can get close enough to photograph, but I don’t know that I’m brave enough to empty a water bottle down it or anything to listen. And if there’s a dude there, I’m definitely backing away. I assume he’ll actually be doing business, not just pretending to pee like the man likely was on the show. This all, however, goes strongly against all of my instincts for gender equality – where is the outdoor squatty potty for women? Although, that’s definitely going to get an upskirt cam or something in it. (I know the plague was rats and poop – but it’s more fun this way.)

    I also thought they would draw it out a bit? I don’t want it to be like Law & Order, or Columbo as you said. Serial killer should mean a story with serial killings spread out to build suspense. There really wasn’t even any question on what the killer was – her and her buddy almost immediately noticed children all had birth defects, and then acted surprised and put it together again (?) when they realized the link of the children with the birth defects.

    I do like Ardelia Mapp – I always liked the way they bonded in Silence, and she was one of the more solid parts of Hannibal. I’m curious how they will sustain interest – obviously Clarice Starling is a purposely complex character, but there is a reason that the series of books is based around Hannibal. He’s the part that appeals to our darker sides and makes us voyeurs into the story. It’s why “Hannibal” could be a wickedly delightful show without once mentioning Starling.

    Ooh – I just remembered that there were characters resembling Klaus and Benjamin Raspail from Silence in the Hannibal show, so I looked it up, as that would seem to be messing w/the rights issues. They had characters based on them, but with different names. I wonder if they can stomp on the line like that with Hannibal? Maybe find her a new daddy-issues cannibal to mentor her?

    If they don’t, I’m curious if there’s enough to keep people unfamiliar with the story watching. I’d be curious if the series makes it past a season if they can’t find a Hannibal-style attention grabber.

  6. What is wrong with it going into the river? You know how much fish urine and poop is already in there already? Plus it is a moving body of water, so it isn’t stagnant, so the urine just keeps flowing on.

    That being said, using urine to help make compost is absolutely brilliant and better than letting that liquid gold go to waste. All those puns completely intentional.

    If San Francisco has some, maybe there is a chance I could experience this is America! Although, I really think every town needs these. I’m going to write to Jamie Pollard about getting some of these setup in the tailgate lots. Sorry John’s John, but maybe you are just for the ladies from now on.

    I mean, if they devise an outdoor potty for women that they are willing to use, I’m all for it. But I feel like very few women are going to be enthusiastic about the opportunity. And I also think there would be lots of creepers hanging around. Which is sad, because think of all the fertilizer and compost that isn’t going to get made.

    I wonder if I can just start the revolution and by one of these and put it in my front yard. At the very least, rent one if I’m ever able to have a birthday party again. I suppose it really wouldn’t be that hard to make one yourself. Just need to get the sawdust and hay.

    Close enough to photograph? Which raises the question, how much photography equipment are you going to take on this trip. A good telephoto lens would do the trick without having to get too close.

    As for Clarice, they solved that crime almost immediately. Immediately. They found ONE commonality amongst the victims and it was case over.

    I remember reading that the creators of Hannibal had plans for either a 5 or 7 year arc. I swear, but it has been a long time since I watched it, that they teased the Clarice Starling character in the season finale. But that could be a complete false memory.

    And while I agree with you that the main draw might be the Hannibal character, I think you underestimate the draw of the Clarice character. At the time, it was kinda rare to have a strong female lead in that kind of role. I think that resonated with people.

    Daddy-issues cannibal to mentor her? My uncle used to work in a federal prison. One of the inmates was a cannibal. His nickname was Cold Cuts. Maybe they could use that for Hannibal-but-legally-not-Hannibal’s moniker.

    From what I’ve seen so far, I doubt it makes it past a year. But hope I’m wrong. Looks like it had a decent, but not great rating of .54 for its debut. Important to see where that number goes in episode 2.

    The critics consensus on Rotten Tomatoes kind of nails it:

    Critics Consensus: Effectively grim, but narratively bland, Clarice is a disturbingly safe procedural that lets down both its talented cast and source material.

    Hopefully that “disturbingly safe” improves over time.

  7. I guess my concern is that somehow enough human pee washing over the river plant life might change the ecosystem even a tiny bit (which doesn’t usually affect running bodies of water, so it’s not a huge concern – but I guess I don’t know how stagnant the Seine is?). They run cruises and stuff down it, so it can’t be that stagnant. But it all would dump out into the English Channel; maybe it could disrupt things there? That would take a lot of pee. I don’t know.

    I really like the idea of using it for compost, and cleaning up the city in the process. (I’ve heard that Paris is absolutely filthy.) I’ve never really thought about all the good chemicals in it – I’ve just seen lawns get affected by dogs peeing in one spot. But this isn’t grass, so pee on, men!

    We went to an AAO in San Francisco (the only time I’ve been to the town) – it’s a fun town! Also really dirty, so I can see why they’d put them there. You would think that this would be a really cheap, efficient way to keep the city clean – it’d be awesome in the tailgate lots. Think how much shorter the line would be for women for the porta-potties (and sorry, but they’d largely be cleaner – not all men pee everywhere, but enough men pee everywhere), and men wouldn’t have to stand in those lines to do something that takes them 14 seconds. I guess my only concern is – will there be an outdoor hand-washing station? ‘Cause yuck, if not – I gather men in Paris are walking around w/tinkle on their hands.

    I will absolutely get close enough to photograph – although probably not a man using it. I don’t want to go to Parisian jail. That’s a great question – I’m not taking my full-frame. It’s too heavy to lug around all day, and way too expensive. My mom bought a little Canon Rebel a little after I got my first camera (which I’ve now sold) and had been through two classes, telling me to “just sit with me for an hour and show me everything you know to take pictures.” Which was more than a little insulting. Anyway, I made her take an intro class – and she’s back to putting it on Auto. So I’ll probably take that and NOT put it on auto. I have a fixed 50mm f/1.8 that fits it that I can take to swap out for her kit lens, but I’m probably not going to put in any additional money on her camera she never uses getting better lenses, if that makes sense. Her kit lens IS 18-55mm, though, so I could probably get in a little bit and then crop it in Photoshop!

    I read a bunch of stuff while looking for that Benjamin Raspail reference from the showrunner saying that he had several more seasons’ worth of ideas, and wants to at least do a movie still (Hannibal, I mean). I would think that more and more of the public has discovered it on Netflix, so you would think there’d be a wider base now?

    I do think a strong female character resonated in the 80s, you are correct – especially since she was white, young, Christian, and pretty. Heaven forbid she might have been Muslim, Asian, or not conventionally attractive. However, in the time since, there has been a lot more content featuring just Hannibal than just Clarice, as well as a lot more cinema (although not enough) featuring strong women – they’re going to have to either really step up her advocacy for women in a time of an even lower glass ceiling, or they’re going to have to find a tawdry/voyeuristic draw to get ratings. Or really, just pick a lane. It sort of feels like they’re touching some on the strong female angle, also on the PTSD angle, also on the fascination with serial killers… they need to do at least ONE in a way that really has a good reach and novelty. Although, it’s not like CBS’s crime dramas are novel and thought-provoking, so maybe just her being white and pretty with some dead bodies thrown in will be enough to keep it on, and people who know the universe will just stay in order to hear the story continue. Have you seen if Thomas Harris is involved in this at all? I haven’t looked that up.

    Okay, “Cold Cuts” is darkly hilarious. Better than just rhyming “Hannibal” and “Cannibal.” I’d be all in on her being mentored by a dude named Cold Cuts. You could even use him to trigger her PTSD or something to flesh that out, but show how she’s still drawn to him, I don’t know. It would work! Call up CBS right away! Things like that could push it out of that too-safe zone.

    Thanks for the info on the ratings! I don’t know anything about that stuff. You’d think that a premier episode that has been pretty heavily advertised, playing on well-known characters, would have a strong showing. Although, I honestly am amazed at how they can possibly look at ratings anymore. There are countless streaming services, as well as cable, satellite, over-the-air, and then so many people record things (like I did). Do they still have Nielsen families? I don’t understand how that looks in 2021.

  8. How much human pee do you think a bladder can hold? You could dump a tanker full of pee into that river every day, It is okay to pee on a wound to flush it. All those boats that are going up and down the river is doing tons of damage. A little bit of pee. The river probably thinks it is refreshing.

    But all this pee talk has started to get to me. I straight up had a dream about urinals last night.

    I do think an outdoor sanitizing station is enough. Just like how some of the port-a-potties have sanitizer in there. That being said, not many men would be walking around with tinkle on their hand. You can confirm this with Jon, but if a man is getting urine on his hands while he is peeing, he has some really big problems. Like urine must be leaking out the side of wiener.

    I’m not sure what I would take on that trip. I would take my first string camera for fear of theft. So I’d probably take the second string camera and 3 lenses. A decent zoom lens. A wide angle lens and probably a 50mm prime macro. That being said. The day would probably come and I’d end up taking my first string camera and 7 lenses. Plus the RX0II.

    I’d always hoped that a streaming service would start making more seasons of HANNIBAL, but a movie would work. They would have to retcon the hell out of that series finale though.

    Something like, “You see it was actually a paramedic that went over the cliff…”

    Then Busta Rhymes comes in, doing kung fu…

    I think people want to see Clarice and Hannibal back together. Even though she isn’t his first FBI agent, I think there relationship is the most interesting. Although, the flaming turd that is the HANNIBAL movie perhaps suggest that maybe it was just a perfect combination of a great screenplay and great actors in Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins. Not that Julianne Moore is a bad actress. She’s actually pretty great. But Katharine Hepburn couldn’t have made that movie watchable.

    Tonight is another episode, so we’ll see where it goes. It is hard to draw to many conclusions at this point. But tonight will double up the information that we have on it. But as long as CLARICE doesn’t break into a dumb one-liner while putting on her sunglasses, I will still have hope.

    Cold Cuts apparently tracked down my Uncle’s address and sent him a Christmas card. He was still in prison. I’m sure he is dead by now. I heard that story like 15 years ago. But people who work in prisons, especially prisons like Leavenworth, have some incredible stories.

    I don’t really know how ratings work either. But I know they are still important. Not as important as they used to be. But still important.

  9. About four cups o’ tinkle! (Which is now my new band name.) I agree – the boats are far more harmful. Much like – yes, global warming and such is causing Venice to sink, but cruise ships have an insane amount to do with it. (That’s not a defense of global warming, but just a simultaneous indictment of pleasure ships on the environment.)

    At Hinterland and other outdoor festivals, I’ve seen little round hand-washing stations by the porta-potties. Those would be super-easy, as would hand sanitizer – I just didn’t see them in the Paris photos, and I just assume there are tinkle-croissants everywhere now. Jon just confirmed your tinkle hands thing, so fine, whatever – but weiners still have germs, right? They have to, they’re stuck in pants all day! Just like I wouldn’t want someone touching their armpits and then shaking my hand. (Armpits are so freaking gross.) I may have digressed here.

    The theft is really, really my big concern – pickpockets are known for getting backpacks there a ton, as people wearing them can’t really feel what’s going on. I wouldn’t want to use a camera case that looks like a camera case, as that would announce that there’s money to be made inside. I mostly just want something light enough that I can wear it, or put it inside a big purse and be okay. I do wish I could take about four lenses, but since I don’t currently have a backup camera and will use Mom’s, it makes it hard to use any of them. I do want to get a backup camera at some point, but since I’ve packed it up on doing the official photography business and now just do it for friends for pleasure, it’s all not able to be written off!

    I would 100% be in for a Netflix or Amazon version of Hannibal. I think they’d do a good job. I just started watching Queen’s Gambit last night, as I really enjoy Anya Taylor-Joy, and it’s amazing so far how good the universe-building is for a streaming service.

    Ah, the Hannibal movie (and book). It’s been helped by time only in that it’s so much better than Hannibal Rising. But you’re right – there’s no way to remake the magic of Silence. And the storyline was just nowhere near what it should be, it was too reaching and tried to do too much. I will say that I enjoy the book Red Dragon as much as I do Silence, as I think Will Graham is a fascinating character. I think the male/female dynamic in Silence is fascinating, however.

    I need to watch the episode tonight after the kids go to sleep, as I recorded it. If she makes a crappy pun while putting on those shades, I’ll extra lose it. Hopefully it wasn’t another entirely gift-wrapped murder in that episode.

    So, you know what I wouldn’t want? A cannibal to ever find my address. Man, your poor uncle – I would assume that would just always be haunting and a bit intimidating, that so many inmates focus on you over the years.

  10. Is that 4 cups something you looked up for how much the human bladder can hold? Or is that your best guess. I had my 4 cups in my bladder on Saturday while I was out town sign harvesting and I forgot to bring my mask with me. I normally have a bag with a couple of masks in my car and the maks I usually using in my coat pocket.

    On Friday, it was pizza Friday, I realized I don’t know where my wallet is. You can tell we’re in a pandemic because the last time I could remember having it was 10 days earlier when I had my taxes done. I cleaned out my car and my coat pockets looking for my wallet. (It ended up being on the dining room floor underneath a white fedora.) Then when I left for Hardin County, I forgot. So I travelled without a mask.

    Well, I wasn’t going to go into some gas station without a mask and most park restrooms are closed for winter. So when I hit Defcon 1 on the bladder I pulled off onto a gravel road. I didn’t pull too far off on the road because it hadn’t been cleared all that best.

    I’m trying to hide myself the best I can get my business done, but before I can even think about starting, some old lady pulls up next to me and asks if I’m okay. Then proceeds to want to have a lengthy conversation with me about how I reminder her of her nephew.

    LADY! I just need to take a leak! I should have just went on the side of her car. If I could have gotten away with her not noticing.

    I could have used one of those Paris urinals about then.

    Yeah, I’ve seen those round hand washing stations at several places. The water is always freezing cold! But better than nothing I guess.

    Is it often that people stick their hands in their armpits and then try to shake your hand? Is this an epidemic?

    I’m sure pickpockets are terrible in Paris. I don’t think anybody would be able to steal anything out of my camera backpack though. It opens towards the back, so you have to take it off to even open it.

    You closed the photography business? Why is that? My theory is that it is close to the reason why I don’t really want to start a photography business. At least a portrait photography business.

    QUEEN’S GAMBIT is really good! I really enjoyed it.

    I have to admit, I had completely forgot that HANNIBAL RISING even existed. That is how bad HANNIBAL RISING is. Will Graham is a fascinating character. I think he was probably done better in MANHUNTER than he was in RED DRAGON. But RED DRAGON is still the second best Thomas Harris universe movie. If you don’t count MANHUNTER.

    I think the second episode of CLARICE was substantially worse than the first episode and once again, everything was resolved in one nice episode. She hasn’t said anything witty at a crime scene yet, but she probably won’t. It will be one of the other agents.

    I worry this is going to be one of those shows I hate watch. Like I did for a couple season of THE WALKING DEAD. The third season of 13 REASONS WHY.

    Good thing for my uncle is that he wasn’t a guard or a prison administrator, so he was pretty popular with the prisoners. He taught welding classes and was ahead of the maintenance department.

    I’ve never found Cold Cuts real identity, but he did tell me the story of the time he build a prison cell in the basement for one prisoner who was held in there and never let out. He had been transferred there for killing guards in other prisons. I’ll have to see if I can figure that guys name out again. I think he died recently. Or in the last few years.

    My uncle has been retired for quite some time now, but my nephew still works at the federal prison. He started as a guard, but now he helps with the transition between prison life and being out of prison again. He also has some great stories.

    I have a feeling that the Paris outdoor urinal doesn’t care about hand cleanliness. I mean, it is an outdoor urinal! It doesn’t have time to worry about such things.

  11. I looked up the 4 cups to verify, but I originally heard that when I was in the hospital due to hyperemesis (barfing in dangerous amounts) while pregnant with Charlie. At the risk of sharing too much, you get so dehydrated that you don’t pee for days, so they hospitalize you and pump you full of crazy amounts of drugs and fluids all at once, and then you test the whole 4 cup theory. They have to measure output, so you know EXACTLY how much you just let fly.

    I really, really enjoy the mental image of you just slowly urinating on the side of this old lady’s car while she discussed your need for pulling over, and your nephew-ness. That could be sort of a fun contest – to see how many times you could do that without getting caught. But that’s placing a whole lot of bets on the idea that an old lady would stop and offer help to a young man – I can’t assume that’s a common situation. Charlie and I are the ones who sometimes make Jon pull off onto gravel roads, but there’s no way for a woman to make that look nonchalant. I guess a guy could pretend to be bending over to look at his tires or something while taking a leak? I don’t know if bending and peeing works, so that may be off base. I don’t really need to know the answer.

    That would be the ideal travel backpack – anything that you can only get to from the inside is good. Or else you see people wearing a lot of backpacks on their front, which looks sort of really dumb. If you could lock it, it would be even better.

    We’re only through… episode 4 of Queen’s Gambit? It’s very well done so far!

    Second episode of Clarice was pretty well exactly what we predicted. And has even less to do with serial killers than the first episode, so why include it? I legitimately don’t understand – why would VICAP go to it, it seems that they only deal with sexual or serial killers from what I can google? It’s sort of like in Law & Order: SVU when they need to do a crossover, and so everyone goes wildly out of their lane. But this isn’t a crossover, it’s literally the second episode. Also, I feel confident in the Hannibal book that there was some “Clarice had killed X numbers of times including Buffalo Bill” number that keeps getting hammered, and I feel like this show is going to overshoot that by episode five. (Granted, her buddy shot the dude in episode 2, but still.) I’m also going to grudgingly keep watching, but it’s sort of making me mad that they’re doing this. They also had Clarice sort of play on her sexuality to catch the guy, which is specifically not a Clarice Starling move. It was not well done.

    Has your nephew hopefully stayed away from being hated? I would think that your uncle’s jobs would actually be quite rewarding, other than being near people who eat people. You get to see redemption, and teach skills to people who have maybe not always had a lot of opportunities. That’s awesome!

    So many reasons I quit the photography business. I’ll sort of itemize:

    – I never wanted to do that as my main job, so I specifically never set up a studio. I listed on my website that I did “lifestyle photography” with an explanation – for this reason. I’m not going to put a baby in a bucket, I’m not going to strictly pose you. I’ll give you some vague, “Yeah, maybe get a little closer” direction if you want, but I’m not a director.
    – People get demanding if you are a photographer, even if you have made it clear that you are charging MUCH less because you’re not there to provide a director.
    – I don’t really want to meet a lot of new people, because people largely suck. This forces me to meet people who are often under stress to get their dream photo, so you see a lot of ugliness towards kids, etc.
    – Wedding photography is, without a doubt, the worst job in the world. I did a few, and I will say – the three lesbian weddings I shot were the chillest ones by far. Straight people who selected me because of my “natural” style wanted me to enforce a schedule on their day, but then got mad if I tried to suggest the schedule, they had hella-long hours, it took forever to shoot. It’s not worth the small amount I was charging.
    – People abuse you for it. They lie to get a smaller rate, take advantage of you.
    – It’s SO MUCH TIME in the fall – I don’t get to see the kids for whole weekends due to family photography.

    That’s honestly just a few of the reasons. Mostly, it’s making something I enjoy into something I dread – which is a lot of the reason why I’m less on the weekly photo challenges, which I love. I just spent so much forced time behind the camera that it made me not use it for fun. I’ll keep doing it for friends and family, lots of the kids – but I don’t need to make it more than that at all.

  12. That sounds like an absolutely horrible experience. And not the type of horrible experience I enjoy. The type I definitely don’t enjoy.

    I will tell you this. Being tall, the only way to try to pull off peeing on somebody’s car while they don’t notice… they have to have a SUV or truck. She had a SUV. It is one of the reasons that in about 2 years, I plan on trading in the Camry for a RAV4. A RAV4 provides a lot more protection from the world when you need to do some backroad irrigating. Plus, I want more storage, it is higher up which is nice for some of my older passengers, and I would like a little bit more off road capability. Not that I’m going mudding, but there are definitely some roads I won’t attempt in a Camry.

    But this discussion about emergency bathroom stops with you and Charlie makes me wonder… Have you watched NOMADLAND yet?

    If you haven’t, there is a very small segment on what type of bucket to get for bathroom duties if you decide to become a nomad and live out of your van.

    As for camera backpacks, I’m pretty sure I could lock mine, but have never tried to do such a thing. When I bought my current back, I might have over purchased. It is really big. so I don’t use it as a backpack as much as my old camera back pack. The old one could fit a camera and two spare lenses. You could toss more stuff in there, but that is what it was designed to hold.

    My current back back can hold two cameras and probably 6 extra lenses. Which is really heavy. But when I take it, I should just pack what I need, but I end up just leaving everything in there and it is heavy.

    I think I’m talking myself into buying another smaller camera backpack for when I want a couple extra lenses, but don’ t need the weight of the entire arsenal.

    The zippers finally gave up on my old backpack.

    I think QUEEN’S GAMBIT has a solid ending and the story has been told. I hope they don’t suddenly decide to make another season of it and try to make a story where there isn’t one.

    Ahhh… CLARICE. Yeah, I just… can’t. Why were they there? It wasn’t much of a standoff as people seemed to be able just roam the grounds freely.

    Some thing I noticed in episode 2 because you described Starling as pretty. I mean, Jodie Foster is pretty and so is Julianne Moore to a lesser degree, but I never really thought of the character as “pretty” in a conventional sense. Even though Dr. Chilton and the bug guys clearly hit on her.

    The thing I noticed is that Clarice was wearing lipstick in this episode. Not something I would necessarily normally notice, but it really seemed off putting to me.

    She definitely was flirting with the head Ruby Ridge character to trick him into taking a bullet to the head. There was nothing about that sequence that I liked. I’m pretty sure that would’ve insured that the militia would have killed Starling and definitely turned the situation into a Waco.

    Let’s see who she kills off tomorrow night.

    My nephew? Oh my cousin. He is pretty popular because he is getting people ready to leave prison. However he says the recidivism rate is depressing. My Uncle was still teaching classes in the state prison in Leavenworth (there are 7 prisons in Leavenworth) after retirement. But he got cancer a couple years back and had to give it up.

    That list pretty much nails it. I don’t mind doing like single portrait work. Like senior pictures. I actually enjoy that. Family portraits are okay, but the smaller the family the better. But weddings are the worst. I don’t mind doing ceremony itself so much and receptions, cause candid portraits are kind of my jam. But the group portraits are the worst and most stressful. And there is always at least one person there that has to be a jackass. It usually isn’t the bride. It is usually a groomsman. Sometimes a bridesmaid.

    I could do like a wedding candid business, but with the caveat, I don’t do fall weddings. Or really Saturday weddings. Think I could make bank doing wedding candids for weddings that are on Tuesdays? I’ll consider Fridays and get back to you.

    I do think there is a lot of burnout for people who try to do photography as a side business.

  13. That’s a good point. It’d be a lot easier for a short person to casually pee on the side of a sedan. We have some friends who have a RAV4, and they love it. I think it definitely has a lot more leg room. Todd Sieve is a great resource on that, if you’re ever researching – it’s why he picked his Scion and got really into that community, his long legs. We just take whatever they have on the lot, coming from short stock. (I can also fit on an airplane, which is pretty nice for me.) I assume the RAV4 also has more leg room in the backseat? Which is also nice with the older passengers.

    I *just* last night saw Nomadland listed in Hulu (?), and saw that it had Frances McDormand, so I’m adding it to my list! Is it good? She’s almost always excellent.

    Is the newer backpack that’s so heavy arranged so that you could put, like, a change of shirt or meds or a magazine in there in the event that you ever DID want to take out the lenses and cameras? Compartments aren’t a bad thing at all when you’re traveling! I remember Frank used to only bring a backpack, and Jon had to stay in a hotel with him a few times – he would wear the shirt he was going to wear to the office the next day on the plane, and maybe have a change of underpants. That was it, and I guess he just prayed he didn’t drop spaghetti on his shirt. (Jon has a pretty good story relating to that, actually.)

    I read that Queen’s Gambit is based off of a book, I think? Hopefully they don’t go off the rails with it and drag it out. We didn’t get past the fourth episode last night, but will try tonight.

    You worded my frustrations with Clarice much better than I did. It just seemed like some situation where the crooked sheriff was forced to call ATF after the little boy forced the issue, and then the AG called in VICAP for literally no reason at all. And I guess I don’t know what year this is supposed to be – Waco happened in 1993, and they kept referencing it, Ruby Ridge was in 1992, but the events of Silence happened in the 80s? I thought this was supposed to be shortly after. So there wouldn’t be this whole precedence of tons of recent standoffs, so the whole logic for escalating a leisurely standoff with low stakes was…? (Have I ever told you Randy Weaver used to hit on me when I worked at Casey’s in Grand Junction in HS, before he moved back out west? That guy was a skeeve.)

    I 100% agree with the pretty and sexuality thing. So, the whole deal with Clarice in the movies and books – she was pretty, but that was never one of her main defining characteristics. Her strength, her resourcefulness, her ability to draw upon her past. Her being pretty was just an extra draw. So having her chucking on the lipstick and batting her eyes at ol’ Randy Weaver there defeats the entirety of her character. And it really takes a lot of the wind out of the sails of the whole “glass ceiling” angle that they were sort of flirting with in Episode 1.

    That WOULD be pretty depressing, to see people back who you thought really had a chance. I mean, a lot of that is because of social safety nets just sucking, and the trappings of poverty. But it’s still got to be depressing to witness firsthand.

    Yes, senior photos are great – that’s a good age range, so long as they are dead-set against photos. You have people who are not too young that you have to rein them in, not too old that you are working against self-consciousness. I also adore candids, which is why I really like event photography – but it’s central Iowa, so it’s not like there is a large amount of that going around. Group portraits are AWFUL. And I’ve tried to make it clear that I’m not going to do any head-swapping in Photoshop, but then I end up doing head-swapping in Photoshop just to get SOMETHING where everyone’s eyes are all open and nobody is making an overtly stupid face.

    100% yes – someone always thinks they are hilarious in the wedding party, and makes it a giant chore. They’re not ever funny. You are onsite for, like, 10 hours and have dozens of posed photos (which empirically just suck) in questionable lighting. And it’s not like you have the ability to go back and redo it, so the stress is huge.

    I love the idea of a wedding candid business only on off-time. Because they have to have it during non-work hours, too, to make it so you don’t have to take vacation. It is super-draining to basically work 90 hour weeks (when you factor in the time of editing photos, my day job, and sessions), and I never charged much so I usually operated at a loss. Which I discovered after running at a profit for a couple of years when doing weddings and had to pay taxes, it’s much better to operate at a loss, so I purposely bought a new camera or work laptop and then didn’t take as many jobs.

  14. The session I did for Shannon’s family a year or so ago was a shining example of what I DO enjoy in a group session. It is almost standalone in that I had FUN, we joked around, everyone wanted to be there and participated, etc. But how do I achieve that with anyone else, as a lot of that had to do with the fact that I practically lived in their house for 6+ years?

  15. Yeah. probably easier to not end up on any unfortunate list.

    I am pretty well versed in the RAV4. It is what my Mom drives. Plus, as long as my brother-in-law works at Wilson Toyota and they keep giving me the “family discount” that is where I’ll get my automobiles. I honestly don’t know about the legroom in the RAV4 in the back. But I’m sure it is an improvement. But I do love my Mom’s RAV4. But being able to have all the extra storage in the back and the higher ground clearance will be nice. Plus if need be, it could be used for a camper.

    The mileage isn’t as great as the Camry, but mileage on new vehicles does keep getting better and better.

    I’ll be interested to see what you think of NOMADLAND. It is cleaning up on the awards circuit. It is by a director that makes movies that are fictional, but are filmed almost like documentaries with just a few real actors and the rest of the cast is filled with normal people.

    It is about people that living out of their vans or other vehicles when they get old. But it definitely doesn’t romanticize it. But it also doesn’t criticize the employers that take advantage of these people either. The book it is based on, is more critical of these places.

    I wouldn’t describe it as uplifting…. any ways just watch it when you get a chance and let me know.

    The new backpack could definitely hold a short or meds or a magazine. There is not a spot for a laptop, which is fine, since I don’t own one. But you could probably put a tablet in there.

    After this conversation, I came across an interesting camera backpack:

    http://kck.st/3rfq6jD

    One of those things where clearly Big Brother Google was listening in.

    I understand that chess people are really impressed with how accurate the chess is in the show, so that is cool. It also sounds like it is about the only book that the guy who wrote it ever wrote. He was a chess player, but nowhere near as good as most of the players featured in the show.

    I haven’t even thought about when CLARICE is supposed to be set. I just assumed it was set in present day and everything just happened a year ago. I’ll have to pay attention to that in tonight’s episode. It did bother me that they kept referencing Waco, when the situation was much more akin to Ruby Ridge. Or similar to when Y’all Qaeda* took over that park station in Oregon. It wasn’t much like Waco at all.

    I have heard the Randy Weaver story. Bet that guy is a big time Trumper now.

    Is Clarice supposed to be really short? I don’t know how tall Jodie Foster is or Julianne Moore, but the new actress feels really, really short. Maybe it is just the people they put around her are really tall.

    Just looked it up. All of them are listed as 5’3″. Anthony Hopkins is 5’9″. So maybe SILENCE OF THE LAMBS is just filled with short actors.

    Jodie Foster does feel smaller in PANIC ROOM than she doe in SILENCE OF THE LAMBS. Has to be the size of the actors she is paired with. Forest Whitaker is 6’2″.

    It is usually a groomsman that thinks that they are hilarious or a bridesmaid that is mad that the day isn’t all about them, but they are sure going to try to make it all about them.

    But I think you really actually nailed the reason I hate wedding photography. It is the lighting is always terrible.

    Yeah, when I briefly looked at making me a “legal business”, I did have a tax id and everything, I was told you could really only lose money for 3 straight years before the IRS starts to expect you to make money. Then there was the whole depreciation of equipment thing. It was a real pain in the buttocks!

    *Also known as Vanilla Isis.

  16. It’s so much better to have first-hand experience with a car when buying, I’m so glad you’ve gotten to ride in/use your mom’s so much. It’s so hard to go completely into an unknown with a vehicle, as it’s a major purchase that has the ability to completely suck up a bunch of your money if you do it wrong. We thought we wanted an SUV when Charlie was born, so we got a Honda CRV. It was a nice little SUV, but completely wrong for our family – Alice couldn’t climb up into it herself (which had been the entire idea behind getting a bigger vehicle), and it was difficult getting newborn Charlie’s baby carrier in and out. We switched it out in less than a year for a minivan, which we’ve had ever since – but, man, that was an expensive lesson. You know exactly what you want it to do, why, and that it will be reliable and meet your needs.

    I’ll mark down Nomadland! I started watching “At Home With Amy Sedaris” and am about halfway through – I absolutely love it, but it’s a show that I cannot suggest to literally anyone in my life, as I don’t know who else would like it. It is simultaneously incredibly sarcastic and incredibly silly. I’ll do that one right after as a change of pace. That’s an incredibly interesting premise there.

    That’s a fascinating backpack, for sure – I like the top table-like open (although I’m not sure it would be awesome for pickpocketing?). Although it sounds like, pared down, your current backpack would be pretty awesome for those purposes. With the compartments that a camera backpack usually has, it would be harder for a pickpocket to grab something down at the bottom, anyway – it might be a perfect solution, just keep dirty underwear in the top compartments.

    I don’t know a lot about chess, I played it some (poorly) in high school and have subsequently forgotten almost all of it from disuse, although Jon and Alice play it. I find it interesting that the show is apparently so great w/the chess, but also that you don’t need to know even a little bit about chess to enjoy it.

    I just googled – apparently Silence was supposed to be set in 1992, and this was supposed to be set in 1993. (Does that seem right? I thought Silence was earlier than that.) I agree, this is much more like Ruby Ridge – this wasn’t a whole religious thing like Waco. It was just a crazy dude with an arsenal and some really awful ideas toward women, MUCH more akin to Weaver. (I’m POSITIVE that guy is a Trumper. Wouldn’t be surprised if he participated in Vanilla Isis in Oregon, honestly.) But yeah, that’s nothing at all like something VICAP would do. It is a complete non sequiter.

    I don’t remember her being incredibly short in the books? Maybe petite? You’re right, Anthony Hopkins is a little dude, so maybe it was perspective. 5’3″ is still taller than me, but she is getting towered over by the other actors in this – which, I wonder if they maybe purposely chose tall actors to emphasize the gender inequity? I need to watch last night’s over lunch today before the kids come home from school. My hopes are not high, although I guess it would have to be better than last week’s.

    You 100% hit the nail on the head with the wedding party jackasses. “I’m the party groomsman!” or for sure a bridesmaid who can’t quite handle not being the star of the show. They’re often the bridesmaids who vomit on themselves at the reception, or the groomsmen who have a crazy dance or outfit for the reception.

    It’s honestly shocking how bad the lighting is in indoor wedding venues, including churches. And I’ve specifically said I’m not bringing an entire lighting setup, so you can either deal with the results of a 3200 ISO, or we can take them in whatever light happens to be available that day outdoors/by a window. And it’s not like you can usually go and scope out a lot of the venues ahead of time, especially if they’re in a remote area.

    I think I forgot to respond to your comment about how awesome Decorah is. I AGREE! It was so neat, and unique. First off, I think it’s the only town I can think of where I could see, like, three different homemade yarn stores from the corner where I was standing. Not that I have a big need for homemade yarn, it just sort of encapsulates the quaintness and attitude up there! And the countryside was breathtaking. I took the bride/groom to this park overlooking the valley for some of their photos, and they were just amazing.

  17. A really short response, since I hope you get it before lunch.

    Last night’s episode of CLARICE gave me some hope. I’m not going to say it was great, but it was a marked improvement. I’m not sure I care for the story they are pursuing. Reminds me a bit of one of my all-time guilty pleasures, THE FOLLOWING, but I left this episode the most hopeful I have.

  18. This is great news! I have it queued up here to start before too long. I’m so glad to hear that, even if I’m guessing it’s sort of keeping with the standalone episode format. I hope that they get good response from this one and pursue it.

  19. Okay, caught up. Yep, that was by far the best of the episodes, with the exception of the whole super-obvious “he’s poisoned right as he’s ready to give them up” thing. And they really telephoned in that whole thing with the “cop” in the first place, I remember being pretty sure he was going to do something to Starling. I am glad they’re giving some depth to Krendler as a character, who was never anything except a “boy’s club” guy before. That’s a positive of this.

  20. Yeah, it still wasn’t great, but at least trending in the right direction maybe.

    You definitely knew that something was wrong with the Baltimore cop. More than just the creepy – vaguely asked her on a date thing – if I remember correctly.

    I don’t know if you ever saw THE FOLLOWING. But that is what this vaguely reminds me of. Everybody is in on it and they are all smarter than the cops. THE FOLLOWING is not a good place to be. It was a guilty pleasure of mine, but more guilty than pleasure. I watched it religiously because I couldn’t wait to see what incredibly stupid thing would happen in the next episode.

    Come to think of it THE FOLLOWING is probably ripped off of the Thomas Harris universe. A “charismatic” serial killer that torments the cop who caught him. Only, so much dumber.

    But it does remind me of a random memory that I had forgotten. When I worked for an Ames Outpost of the Evil Clown Empire, I learned that prisoners in the Ames jail got their meals from us. The cops would come through the drive-thru and say they needed X prisoner meals.

    In the morning it was the egg muffin meal. In the afternoon it was the All-American Meal. Which was a cheeseburger or hamburger, small fry, and small drink. I always stuck it to the tax payers and went with the cheeseburger. I figure after a rough night in jail, they deserved the slice of cheese. We got to choose their drink as well.

    On the positive side, looks like spring is starting to show up this week. My lilacs are starting to bud, so warmer weather is on the way. At least above freezing, hopefully.

  21. I’d been trying to remember what “The Following” was when you mentioned it before, so I just looked it up – I REMEMBER THAT! I want to say a little bit of it was filmed in the Georgia town where a friend of mine lives – like, just one episode or something like that. I miss Kevin Bacon. I like that he exists out there, it is comforting. Even if it’s doing trashy TV that sucks you in.

    That is fascinating – I had no idea that they did fast food for prisoners. I guess I always just assumed they packed a bunch of sandwiches if they needed to go somewhere. An All-American meal is more than enough for me (especially if I want heartburn), and an egg muffin meal is too much – but I would think that would not be quite enough food for a lot of the prisoners? This is an assumption that I am making based off of the fact that every prison show always has one giant guy, at the very least. I think those dudes could eat a STACK of cheese slices. I appreciate that you were helping them out – it makes me smile. I hope you also gave them a good soda. That’s a shameful thing I hate to admit – I am addicted to McDonald’s Diet Coke. I don’t need anything else from there, but their mix on fountain Diet Coke is the best. There have been entire studies proving this correct (along with their other drinks, I guess).

    I’m so grateful that it isn’t 40 below. Our power went out for a couple of hours around 3 am that overnight when the wind chill got to 40 below, and I was so glad that we hadn’t dipped our temps down overnight that night. I haven’t seen any flowers, but I’ve heard geese returning, and it makes me happy.

  22. THE FOLLOWING was just a complete trainwreck. Each episode found a way to be dumber than the previous. It combined two things that interest most people. Serial killers and cults. (I don’t know if you saw the crime docuseries sketch on SNL, but if you haven’t it pretty much nails what I watch when I’m cleaning the living room and kitchen, it is about women, but I still felt seen). But THE FOLLOWING asks the very serious question, what if there was cult made up entirely of serial killers?

    The link to the SNL skit if you haven’t seen it:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4RdcE6H4Gs

    I am Nick Jonas at the end.

    While I don’t think CLARICE is heading down the Serial Killer Cult route, I think it is heading down the “everybody could be in on it” route.

    The thing about Ames “prisoners” is that they aren’t real prisoners. They are people they picked up for the drunk tank that they aren’t transferring to Nevada and are just going to let out in the morning probably. I think, we had to give them something caffeine free. Not 10% sure about that, but I vaguely remember that. So they got Sprite.

    Yeah, I attended many a Evil Clown Convention and in between the time where they weren’t pushing Ray Kroc* was the next Messiah, they were talking about how we served the most popular Coke. This was often brought up when the Coke distributor was speaking. The Coke guy said that the reason Evil Clown coke is so popular is because it is the freshest. Also because the Evil Clown has high cleanliness standards, so the things that are supposed to get cleaned get cleaned, but mostly because of the high volume of Coke they sell, it is the freshest Coke you can get.

    Your power going out sounds like an adventure. Sign me up! Until the pipes burst. I’m always up for a good adventure, until the popes burst.

  23. I sent that exact skit to Jon and said, “Does this seem familiar?” Because I am EVERY WOMAN on that skit. I watch murder while sewing, or doing laundry. I also felt entirely seen. I’ve branched out a little to cults, but haven’t gotten as far into them. (Cults are one of the reason I think I enjoyed the murder fantasy ending of “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood” so much more than Tarantino’s other recent works.) Jon is not as into murder and cults as I am, so he would sort of be NOT Nick Jonas, he’d be the husband who asks his wife to watch it when he goes to the store or whatever.

    This is not a ringing endorsement of The Following. I don’t think I’ll be looking it up. It makes me sad that Kevin Bacon was attached to that atrocity. I haven’t watched last night’s Clarice yet, I need to in order to see how much further they pushed the conspiracy stuff. I have been watching Stanley Tucci’s Italy show on CNN, and got Jon to watch the latest episode with me last night.

    OH, the drunk tank folks. Yeah, probably the thing they want most at that point is a greasy burger. That’s odd that you weren’t allowed to give them caffeine – seen as a sort of drug, I assume? I guess that makes sense.

    I’m not surprised that they patted themselves on the back for the Coke. It really is fantastic, as terrible as they are as an overall organization toward their employees. A couple of weeks ago when Texas’ power infrastructure failed, I went to the West Ames one to get a Diet Coke, and the carbonation tank things are apparently from Texas, so they couldn’t serve any soda products at all. I thought that was sort of diabolical.

    That was Jon’s big concern – the pipes. I was thinking about how to huddle the children for warmth and maybe get us in the car to drive around and stay warm, but he was far more worried about the pipes. It is definitely a good story, though!

  24. I love cult shows so much. Give me any show on Scientology or Jonestown or Branch Davidians or… my most recent was the Nxivm cult. That was the cult that played volleyball, in case you were confused by the volleyball thing at the end.

    The most recent crime shows I just went through are MURDER AMONG MORMONS (or something like that) and MAN WITH A VAN. Which isn’t great. I just loved the name of the show and the idea, the thing that connected each murderer was they had a van. Parts of it were good, but lots of these shows have terrible “re-enactments”. These re-enactments were particularly bad. But MAN WITH A VAN! On Hulu. The Mormons one is on Netflix. That is legit well done.

    ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD is the best Tarantino has done in some time. I’m still not crazy about the ending, but it is satisfying in a way. I do love all the old Hollywood stuff in it.

    Don’t watch THE FOLLOWING. It is absolutely terrible. Made it more than one season somehow though.

  25. I don’t know why, but I think that I somehow end up watching murder shows because they creep me out less than cult shows? I realize that sounds insane, at surface level. But with murder shows – it’s one crazy person, maybe two tops. But with cult shows, you’ve got an entire population of people who are just out of their minds. That’s INSANE, and I think it bothers me at a deep level. I don’t know if that translates. I am fascinated by cult shows, however. I just gravitate more naturally toward the murder ones, I think, due to the craziness of mass insanity.

    I haven’t even caught up on last week’s Clarice, so I’m not doing great at murder shows right now. I want to watch that Ted Bundy show on Netflix, I’ve been meaning to for a while. I had heard that the acting was decent, but I don’t know if that’s likely. I love the idea of a Mormon with a van. That would really be the perfect combination.

    It really was one of his best – he does some good world building, but that one is fantastic. And Leo with the little girl on the set is one of my favorite scenes. Brad Pitt really was wonderful. It was all well done – although I agree again, I don’t love the retelling of the ending. I really would assume that Tarantino would be a pretty big mess to be married to or dating. He’s got some really deep-seated issues.

  26. I’m just lay it out there. I think episode 4 of CLARICE was a regression. I can barely remember what happened it, other than the fact that I was bored. It was a bunch of office politics BS that I don’t care about at all. Seemed like a complete waste of time.

    If I was making a true crime series, I would call mine MAN WITH A STACHE. Cause I guarantee you I can find plenty of criminals with a terrible stache. Probably something like 85% of the show. And every episode would begin with a closeup of the perpetrator grooming his stache. At least 15% of the episode would be experts analyzing the stache and how it lead this person down the road of crime.

    MAN WITH A STACHE.

    And you know what, plenty of cult leaders rocked a stache too, so I get the best of both worlds.

    Don’t know why, but I’ve always been fascinated by cults. I can’t relate to the groupthink that goes on in them and while it is terrifying, I think that is why I find it so fascinating.

    Yeah, I’m sure Tarantino is probably a horrible person in real life. I recently watch the movie that made him or at least gave him a chance to make RESERVOIR DOGS. TRUE ROMANCE. It is big time overrated, but that is probably because noted hack and less talented brother Tony Scott (Rest In Peace) directed it. I wonder what it would have been like if Tarantino had directed it.

  27. I still haven’t caught up on that episode. The only time that office politics could be interesting would be if it’s about the glass ceiling. Which, even if it is, I doubt will be much of it. I really need to watch it and catch up, with a new one tomorrow.

    I love my dad, and he’s had his stache for decades. But the gross, gross majority of people with non-ironic mustaches at this point have to be criminals. It’s just statistics. If you get the thin, reedy mustache, I’d assume you’re into predatory crime. Thicker caterpillar ones, probably a gruff bank robber. That’s an Excel spreadsheet waiting to be made.

    Jon and I were just talking about True Romance a couple of days ago. I’ve only seen it once, because I just really didn’t care about it. I remember there being an intense scene with Dennis Hopper, and I just don’t really remember any of the rest of it. Full disclosure – I also really don’t get Patricia Arquette as a thing. I enjoyed Boyhood, but other than that, I really don’t get it. So that may contribute to the forgetability of True Romance.

  28. Now you are probably 2 episodes down on CLARICE.

    Something I had forgot is that episode 4 is that it did have a decent cliffhanger. I guess not that great, since I forgot about it.

    But you have plenty of time to catch up as there isn’t another new episode again for a few weeks.

    I think episode 5 was somewhat of a rebound. I liked it better. However, the ending of the episode, or at least the resolution, hardcore reminded me of THE FOLLOWING.

    If you dad has had a stache for decades, he must have piled the dead hooker bodies all over Boone County. Now he is probably working on filling up Story County. Does he has a weird shed or workspace in the basement that is always locked and he seems a little paranoid about?

    I was onboard with your stache spectrum until you said spreadsheet. Maybe a stache Venn Diagram. I could get behind that.

    Patricia Arquette was big time overrated and I don’t know if there would be a reason to remember TRUE ROMANCE at all if it wasn’t written by Tarantino. Christian Slater is particularly bad in this movie I feel. Gary Oldman’s character… sigh. But he really went for it.

    I think the best part of that movie is actually Brad Pitt.

  29. I caught up on Episode… 4 is the second-to-most-recent, right? The administrative one? You were right, it was a lot of office politics. I’m sure that’s building up to something, but I expected SOME of that to have to do with the glass ceiling stuff, and it didn’t. It dealt with race relations within the Bureau, but only sort of. I’m glad I’ll have a little bit of time to catch up on the most recent one. I started Nomadland, and need to finish it. It is really captivating so far.

    I hope that he was smart enough not to hide the dead bodies in Boone County, but maybe to go to Webster or Hamilton or something. Don’t pee where you eat, so to speak. There are plenty of crawl spaces around – I refused to buy a house with a crawl space that was old enough to have been owned by John Wayne Gacy. Jon found this stipulation irrational.

    I vaguely remember this being sort of really near the end of Christian Slater’s reign over popular movies. And I just – Patricia Arquette is generally a bad actress, not believable, she just really has that one whiny voice when she’s trying to emote. I don’t get the love. I remember cringing at Gary Oldman – but man, is that a guy who loves to chew the scenery.

    I have a love of Brad Pitt. But mostly more recently because he is not at all afraid to play weird characters, rather than the big budget leading man stuff that he was doing circa “The Mexican.” It’s part of why I enjoyed Johnny Depp for a while, before it became clear that he was apparently an awful person.

  30. Have you finished NOMADLAND yet? Do you know what type of bucket person you are? Don’t tell me, that is a personal question.

    I wouldn’t want a house with a crawl space period. When I was looking for a house, I was surprised by how many houses didn’t have a basement or only had a basement big enough for a furnace and water heater. I also saw so many crazy ways to get into the basement.

    Let me know when you watch CLARICE episode 5.

    I also like Brad Pitt. His movies are usually genuinely interesting.

  31. I forgot to message you – I finished it on Monday! It was exceptional. Man, Frances McDormand is a one-of-a-kind talent.

    You know what I could never be? A bucket person. Or a nomad. I’m too much of a creature of habit; I like to take my adventures in small, controlled doses. I kept thinking, “STAY WITH YOUR SISTER! STAY WITH DAVE!” You’d think that the time she blew her tire and was only saved because Swankie was there would sober her to the realities of being entirely on your own.

    I fear that our house sort of has a crawl space now, but not a “real” crawl space. It’s just got a little closet-ish area under the stairs. It has, like, sheetrock hung and painted cement floor, so it’s only a little “unfinished.” I don’t ever go all the way in, though. Even though Gacy was dead way before this place was built. Basements are crazy in Iowa – I remember my grandma and grandpa Lind had a crazy storm cellar on the outside of their farmhouse that I’d never, EVER have gone down in. Now THAT could have had bodies in it.

    Finished Clarice episode 5, too! Man, was I just squeamish and frustrated the whole show – hey, dummy, you JUST promised Esquivel to not go rogue, and then you went ahead and went rogue. And the doctor was a little TOO evil for reality, but it was tense and genuinely like a horror movie – not a great one, but a horror movie. I’m also not sure how the Krendler storyline works – obviously he’s more pitiable in this show, but how then does that reconcile with him calling Starling “corn pone country pu**y” in Hannibal? Or is that universe not to exist…?

    I think Brad Pitt is a man who genuinely enjoys his work, and most of life.

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