It’s America’s 243rd birthday.
I plan to ignore the TV coverage of the military parade in Washington DC, and the ‘Salute to America’ speech by Trump! .. but here’s a little impromptu artwork, done with the help of a 1967 Spirograph set that I had recently bought on EBay.
We have warm weather on the way for the city: we will touch 90 (32 °C) on Wednesday.
Time to let cool air in at night and in the morning, and keep the shades on the windows down in the day! (I don’t have central air-conditioning in the house).
We were at a pub called Stout on 11th Avenue, for our beers tonight. I like the artwork behind the main counter. (It seems to me to have some communist propaganda poster undertones. Maybe if it had a slogan or a message, it would have said ‘Work hard, drink beer!’).
Alright .. I’m done for now with my iTunes tune-up. It was a lot of fun. In some cases I broke the ‘rules’: uploaded a singles album cover from online, if I had only imported the hit song from a full CD, and I did not like the CD cover much. In other cases where I had multiple CDs for one artist or group (ABBA), I could upload several cool old vinyl covers or CD covers.
Check out the hippopotamus that I had bought at the craft market in the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.
It is only one animal in a whole catalogue of beautiful ceramic artwork, offered by Porcupine based in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa.
It was a scorcher here today in the northern suburbs of Cape Town.
My little rental car’s dashboard gauge hit 39.5°C/ 103°F at one point!
There is no water supply crisis in Cape Town the way there was just a year ago (dam levels at 57% vs 25% a year ago). Even so: I try to use water sparingly. As someone said: the best time to save money, electricity, water, is when you still have plenty.
P.S. Check out the cool safari animals that I found today on Eversdal Road in Durbanville. They advertise artificial turf. I think the rhinoceros will make quite a statement, if I were to install one in my front yard in Seattle!
Howard Schultz, billionaire ex-CEO of Starbucks Coffee Co. has been making the rounds on morning shows and talk shows, announcing that he is thinking of entering the 2020 presidential race as a ‘centrist independent candidate’.
He is not off to a good start. Democrats fear he will draw away critical support needed to defeat Trump, from the Democratic candidate in a three-way race. Schultz also criticized liberal Democratic policy positions right out of the gate (healthcare for all, free college, more taxes on the rich).
Others say that a being a billionaire in the 2020 race is a non-starter – given how spectacularly out of touch the billionaire-in-chief in the White House and his billionaire Wall Street cronies are, with the plight of most Americans trying to make a living*.
*Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross ‘just did not understand’ last week why federal employees missing two paychecks would visit food banks, when they could ‘simply take out loans to pay their bills during this time of a liquidity crisis’.
(That’s a classic Meatloaf song title). I attempted three errands this morning, and was successful with two. 1. To the dentist for my 6-monthly ‘chomper check-up’ & cleaning: success. 2. To the bank to deposit a big check (yes, I know I can take a picture with my smartphone & deposit it, but I had a question about the check). The bank people are always very nice to me (because they have a lot of my money): success. 3. To Seattle Central Library to download my international newspapers onto my iPad: fail. It was only 9.25 am, they only open at 10.00 am, and I wanted to go home to have my oatmeal, blueberry & yogurt breakfast.
We ran out to the movie theater today to go see the just-released Freddie Mercury/ Queen biopic called ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. It had gotten mixed reviews from the critics – but as it turned out: what do they know? I thought it was very, very well done.
American actor Rami Malek worked hard to undergo a stunning transformation to portray Freddie Mercury’s flamboyance and human side. The filmmakers collaborated with Queen’s drummer Roger Taylor (71) and lead guitarist Brian May (69). (Bass guitarist John Deacon (67) retired from the band’s activities a few years after Freddie Mercury passed away in 1991).
The movie ends with an amazing recreation of Bob Geldof’s Live Aid concert that was held in 1985 at Wembley Stadium in London (worldwide rock concert organized to raise money for the relief of famine-stricken Africans).
I lucked out and caught the last day when these LEGO ‘Americana Roadshow’ models were on display at Bellevue Square mall, last Sunday.
I don’t think I aspire to build giant LEGO models like these .. but maybe that is just because I don’t have hundreds of thousands of bricks to work with!
My ‘Townhouse Triple’ used up the last of my windows and white brick stock.
This illustrates the LEGO builder’s dilemma: which creations should one keep on permanent display, and which should one break down (to free the bricks for something else)?
Update 7/22: Here’s an updated model with an improved rooftop.
What would my actual house look like in Lego* bricks? I wondered. Well, only one way to find out, I thought: build it – and so I did. I’m pleased with the result. I had to scavenge bricks and roof tiles from my 2004 Lego Designer House kit, destroying it in the process – but that’s OK. The roof was a lot of fun to build.
*Lego is short for leg godt, Danish words that translate to ‘play well’.
We went to see Disney’s animated movie Coco (2017)* in a local arts theater here. The movie revolves around a Mexican boy Miguel, and the annual Day of the Dead/ Día de Muertos celebration. Before the movie started, Mazatlán resident Laura Medina explained the Day of the Dead to us. ‘Life and death is a duality, and cannot be completely separated’. Day of the Dead is about gatherings of family and friends, to pray for, and remember, friends and family who have died – and help support their spiritual journey.
*To quote IMDb: a touching, massively heartwarming story of the strongest familial variety.
I read a description today of an ‘Eero Saarinen tulip base dining table with white marble top’ in an article about decorating. Well. Let’s find out what this table looks like, I thought. (Redeem myself a little from the cheap Ikea furniture I still have, by improving my designer furniture knowledge).
Saarinen (1910-1961) was a Finnish American architect and industrial designer, noted for his neo-futuristic style. I also learned that Saarinen was the architect of the Gateway Arch in St Louis.