Tuesday, July 23, 2002


You know it's summer.

The weather channel is running a constant streamed message about the thunderstorm warning. The dragonflies are all over the place. The hydrangeas are wilting and begging for a daily dose of the good stuff. The creek is smelly. The flowers in the windowbox are agreeing with the hydrangeas and if you don't pay attention on a daily basis they look completely dead in the next 24 hours. But they're easily revived with a kettle full of cool water. The black raspberries are done and are now a memory. The blueberries are almost with them.

Summer is here too when the garden finally shows forth her fruits. Or veggies as the case may be.

Here, it is the zucchini and the summer squash that is coming out first. We actually lost a couple on the vine due to not paying close enough attention. Take your eyes off it for two days and it is either full of over ripe bodies or new bodies that you don't remember seeing. I had to pick two zucchinis and throw them off into the woods because they had gone south.

But every day we're pulling two or three beautiful veggies off their homes. And the cucumbers are almost ready now too. The green peppers look like they'll be next.

And then there are the tomatoes.

We have three different kinds growing this year, and all the plants are covered with gorgeous fat little green bodies waiting to burst into gorgeous ripe redness.

I love our garden. I love watering it, checking on it. I love seeing the changes, the progress. I'm a city girl at heart. I grew up in the projects. My mom always worked hard on flower gardens with the neighbors, and sometimes my sister and I would be out there helping. But I never felt like I belonged at that. It was a hobby for my mom, not something that I should really encroach upon.

And pretty soon it won't be summer anymore. Summer will be over and we'll pull the tomato frames down. We'll pull up the black sheeting which prevented weeds from choking off our plants this year. Pretty soon this will all be a precious memory. All the wonderfully grilled veggies with kabobs. All the bitching my daughter does when we make her eat healthy greens and yellows. I need to get a good zucchini bread recipe from someplace so I can make this all last a little while longer. Keep summer under my roof for an extra month or so, in order to keep that memory through the long New England Winter and bring me to the late spring of next year.

So I can do it all over again.

We rented "Zoolander" last night. A very funny but very stupid movie.

I enjoy Ben Stiller a lot, and have adored him since his ridiculous TV shows on MTV and FOX back in the day. True to his nature, he's great at creating bizarre characters, and his Derek Zoolander character was simply riotous. Story goes that he invented the character as a spoof for VH1 for one of their fashion programs. And he and Drake Sather developed it into a full movie.

I loved how they spoofed everything about male models. I adored the little biography movies they did for the Fashion Awards, and again, how Steve Kmetko can make fun of himself by being in all these movies. He's so handsome... and yes, I know he's gay. Don't worry. I can still think he's good on the eyes, I doubt he'd be offended.

Stiller plays Derek Zoolander, a really really really really good looking model. Owen Wilson plays Hansel... a young upshot model in the fashion world, and he unseats Zoolander as the male model of the year.

Zoolander is impacted by this loss and begins to wonder what the point is. He tries to go home to Coal Mining Country in Southern New Jersey (I laughed out loud and hard) and reconcile himself to his family. But that doesn't work out... and he goes back to New York to face the fashion music.

Meanwhile, an insidiously wicked plot to kill the prime minister of Malaysia is in the works, the result of his promise to raise minimum wage and end child labor in his country. Which will ruin the fashion industry for good. Mugatu -- wonderfully played by the amazing Will Ferrell -- needs the perfect patsy to do the dirty deed. Zoolander is stupid enough, and easily brainwashed and ready... A Time Magazine reporter figures it all out, and rushes to save the day, enlisting the help of Derek's arch enemy, Hansel.

There are some incredibly funny scenes in this movie -- the gasoline fight and the fun scenes of Zoolander and his buddies frolicking as if in a fashion commercial are a riot. David Duchovny as the "Deep Throat" leading the Time Magazine reporter to the clues was both funny and ironic... The computer scene in Balls' office where Hansel and Zoolander become primal. All told, I laughed at it. Mindless pure entertainment, not at its finest, but certainly ridiculous.

"Zoolander" isn't one of the best movies I've ever seen, nor the worst. I think the plot in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back was more developed and thought out, and that's saying a lot.

I like Owen Wilson a lot. He has the craziest nose I've ever seen... and having him be a male model with that totally unique look and his new age fakeness was just hysterical. Owen Wilson was in a really weird movie that we rented this time last year called "The Minus Man," where he plays a very demented serial killer. I highly recommend that one. It is kind of weird and trippy, and worth the watch. Part of you wants to like him and hopes for his well being to be established and fine, and another part of you wants him dead.

Best part of that movie is he killed Sheryl Crow in the first 10 minutes, thank God. I can't stand her. She wasn't Sheryl Crow of course, she was a character that he kills... but if she was going to be in the whole movie I would have thrown up. I haven't seen many of his movies. Hell, I haven't even seen "Bottle Rocket" yet and Scott keeps urging me to. I've seen Minus Man, and Shanghai Noon, which I think was his first big ticket film... didn't see the Tennenbaums yet but I'm going to. What else... Didn't see "Behind Enemy Lines" because it looks too damn predictable.

And I guess that's it. If you've got any Owen Wilson recommendations, send 'em my way. That link up there goes to the Wilson Brothers Fan Site but directly to his specific page. If you're at all interested in design, fan sites... go to the root directory and look at the site. I think it's pretty advanced for a fan site. Most of them are tripod sites and lame at that.

Right now we're getting pounded by some storms. The weather channel made it sound as if we were going to be killed... but there has been little or no storm activity. Although half our cable channels are blanked out. A clear indication of something more horrible someplace else. We spent a good deal of time hanging drywall before the storms hit. We took down our kitchen and dining area lighting so we could do the drywall and now it is pitch dark in there, so we can't see for shit. We have maybe five more panels to hang. Then we can start the mudding and taping. Damn. This is a hell of a project. I'm so used to simple assed things like painting. Once in a while slapping spackle on a hole. Nothing this serious.

I'd like to gut our bathroom and tile it over. HA! What a crack induced fantasy that is, right?

Anyway. I hope Carrie gets to read this before her conference call. I'm rushing to get it online before the lightning fries my modem. Only for you, Carrie. Only for you...

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