2023: I’m Not Ready!

So. Here we are in 2023. Weird. Very weird. As I’ve said many times, I remember wondering whether the year 1984 would turn out to be anything like its infamous eponymous book. And the year 2001, also famous but more from the movie than the book, once seemed like the very distant future to me.

And now I find myself two decades beyond the very distant future. (And still no flying cars or Moon vacation resorts.) Down here on Earth, in Minnesota, our mild winter finally got its act together and gave us a proper winter snowstorm. (Oh, boy, did it ever.)

I’m still recovering from all the shoveling plus a full week with my pal, Bentley!

She was with me from a week ago Friday (Dec. 30) until yesterday (Jan. 6), and we had a fun week. It was more fun until the snowstorm — which made going for a walk really tough — but she was already starting to tire after several days with me, so I think she appreciated the break.

Even if we don’t do a lot of walking (she’s getting older and is only good for about a mile), staying with me wears her out just because she’s more alert and active here than she is at home (where she’s got her regular patterns). And little love sponge that she is, she knows she can work me for a lot more attention than she normally gets (she’s got me really well-trained in that regard).

Temperatures were close to freezing, so the snow was wet and heavy and stuck to everything! Looks pretty, but hell to shovel.

I spent yesterday evening doing the chores I’d ignored all week. And, in the evening, watching more Lilyhammer on Netflix. It’s really good. (Lilyhammer, I mean, not Netflix, which is sometimes really good but all too often really bad.) Lots of people have recommended the show (including BentleyMom who was the first to tell me about it), so I finally got around to checking it out. (I think the snowstorm put me in the mood for a TV series set in Norway.)

If you’ve never heard of it, it stars Steven Van Zandt. Yeah, that Steven Van Zandt. I never watched The Sopranos (and probably never will), but Van Zandt seems perfect for the role of a Mafia guy. He’s got both the look and the presence. He’s totally believable in the role and a lot of fun.

No way I’m shoveling all that wet snow from my driveway, but I had to cut a path so Bentley and I could reach the street!

He plays Frankie “The Fixer” Tagliano, a former underboss in the New York Mafia. A regime change results in an assassination attempt on his life, and this induces him to testify against the new boss (someone he didn’t think fit for the job anyway and hence the assassination attempt). In consequence, he’s moved into the Federal Witness Protection Program and insists he be placed in Lillehammer, Norway (because he thought the place looked so nice during the 1994 Winter Olympics).

The show’s title reflects both Frankie’s dog, Lily (who does get killed in the assassination attempt — little John Wick reference there maybe?), and the way non-Norwegians often pronounce the town’s name. Thematically, this is essentially a “fish out of water” story about a New York gangster adapting to life in a small-ish town in Norway. Or perhaps more correctly, about a small-ish town in Norway adapting to a New York City gangster. He is certainly a force to be reckoned with.

I’m just getting into season two (of three; eight episodes each) and quite enjoying it. I can add my voice to those recommending it.

This shot into the tree in my front yard might become my new desktop wallpaper. Impressive how the wet snow stuck to the branches!

Tonight “the gang” is going to go see Avatar 2. In 3D. I’m kinda over going to the movie theater at all anymore, and even less happy about it being Saturday night for a still-packing-them-in movie. And while I am a little curious about the current state of the art for 3D movies, I generally consider 3D a dumb gimmick and wish it would go away again. Further, I wasn’t a fan of Avatar and don’t particularly want to see the sequel. CGI stopped impressing me at least a decade ago.

But sometimes ya gotta go along with what most of the others want. (As far as I know, I’m the only curmudgeon about this, so the occasion calls for graciousness.)

Bentley hates the cold! She’s a wannabe lapdog who’d far rather be on the couch with her human and under a warm blanket!

Anyway, between having plans tonight and wanting to chill today — being with Bentley wears us both out! — it may be a few more days until I get around to writing my Janus posts, one looking back at 2022, one looking forward at 2023 (number I’m still having a hard time wrapping my head around).

I’m sure that’s important news you, my faithful half dozen readers. (Honestly, I feel a little silly even bother to announce something like this, but I wanted to post the storm pictures. Also wanted to at least post something in the new year. My posting rate was way down last year. Not sure yet if that’ll be a trend or just a dip.)

Sunny (but cold) today! Love the blue skies! And the plows have done their thing and the streets are basically flat (but icy) again.

So, this post is mostly just an excuse to post some pictures and “get on the board” (i.e., putting up at least one run). The storm left a cold snap in its wake, today being the worst of it (low of -2 and a high of only +17).

But if we can trust the weather predictions (which lately have been iffy), our annual January thaw should start early next week. By “thaw” I mean high temps (just) above freezing. And best of all, no snow predicted in the ten-day forecast.

The city plows the streets (usually leaving a mound of snow blocking our driveways), and the condo association plows our driveways. Eventually. They get to wait until the storm is over which kind of sucks if you wanted to drive someplace.

Not much else to report right now. I want to get to the chilling part of my day. As of January 5th, it’s no longer Chillaxmas, but I’m taking another chill-day anyway! I get to enjoy the couch all to myself and don’t have to take any (short!) walks in this cold. (I’m sure BentleyMom and Bentley took very short walks today!)

Stay warm and cozy, my friends! Go forth and spread beauty and light.

About Wyrd Smythe

The canonical fool on the hill watching the sunset and the rotation of the planet and thinking what he imagines are large thoughts. View all posts by Wyrd Smythe

12 responses to “2023: I’m Not Ready!

  • Wyrd Smythe

    It’s Sci-Fi Saturday, but other than planning to see Avatar 2 tonight, I haven’t been reading or watching that much science fiction lately.

    I have been working my way through Neal Stephenson’s massive The Baroque Cycle trilogy (nearly 1000 pages in my eReader), but I’m not done with it yet. I will say that, while it isn’t my favorite of his works (because I’m just not that into historical fiction), it is still true that Stephenson has never disappointed me.

    (As an aside, neither has Robert J. Sawyer, and I’ve read a lot of his books by now.)

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Avatar 2 was about what I expected. Visually appealing but a stupid boring story where the villains are all bad and the good guys are all wonderful. Subtle as a decapitation. Totally skippable.

  • Wyrd Smythe

    Because Bentley is such a charmer and sweetie, it’s distracting hosting her, so for couch time reading material I’ve been working through Chelsea Handler‘s comedy books. I think the best way to describe my (long time) view of her is “horrified fascination.” She’s rather a piece of work. Or at least her stage persona is — she’s a self-described constant and consistent liar, a teller of extremely tall tales, so it’s hard to separate truth from fiction. To the extent any of it is true, she seems like an “interesting” (but challenging to one’s piece of mind) person.

  • Anonymole

    “Love sponge” – like that. And aren’t they? Do we begrudge them? Never.

    Piles of snow that vanish in the heat. At least their not made of dead kittens or volcanic ash.

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Sometimes I’m, “Hey, I just petted you a whole bunch, and now you’re begging for more?” But that’s just a minor protest before I put down my book and rub her tummy all over again. I wish my actual sponges soaked it up that well.

      Wait. Dead kittens?

  • Lady from Manila

    I’ve always loved looking at winter photos around your house and neighborhood. Snow stucked on the branches is a splendid sight.🤩

    Neither am I a fan of Avatar — I watched the first one. Some call it Blue Pocahontas and CGI version of Dances with Wolves (didn’t watch both). Many have been wondering what’s James Cameron’s beef with the military 🙂.

    Very cute photos of Bentley as well (Was that a toy he’s chewing?😊). Please give as an idea of your “gang.” And just for once, how about a selfie or two? 🙂

    Wishing you a Merrier 2023!🎉🎇🤗

    • Wyrd Smythe

      Happy New Year, Marg! Hope it will be happier for you!

      I think maybe James Cameron has gotten old and simple-minded. A2 is utterly without nuance (and I didn’t appreciate having to watch intelligent “whales” slaughtered). And he sure is fixated on underwater cinema. That said, the film is very pretty, and I wasn’t tempted to sleep through any of it. All-in-all, though, Meh!

      Bentley. She! Chewing a “chewy” — fake rawhide (easier to digest). Her favorite treat!

  • Friday Notes (Jan 27, 2023) | Logos con carne

    […] I recently mentioned I was watching Lilyhammer (2012-2014; three seasons; eight episodes each). It stars Bruce Springsteen’s drummer Steven Van Zandt (who also produced). Overall, I give it an Ah! rating and recommend it. […]

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