Saturday, May 31, 2008

In hopes of sunshine showers


When the butter hit the hot pan the smell of clover and grass and something indefinable sprang up from the pan and woke my senses. I use unsalted organic butter and not margarine and the smell is heaven. Bacon crisped in the skillet on one burner while I poured beaten eggs into the other skillet sizzling with fresh butter. The room smelled of hickory and maple and clover and grass and so much more I was overwhelmed, a sense offense of the loveliest kind.

I must remember to get sea salt or find wherever I tucked the salt grinder because the eggs would have been nicer with a touch of salt and pepper and probably some nions, garlic, peppers, celery, and a bit of cheese would not have been out of place. My taste buds are on alert since I have to go to the grocery story this morning and stock up. The cupboard is bare and the refrigerator beginning to look quite bleak. I've been focused on work and unpacking and laundry and not doing much cooking until this morning reminded me of what I've missed. The farmer's market opens in a little while and I intend to cruise the stalls and pick up the first fruits of the season, and a few vegetables, too, while my senses are still alive and hungry for more.

And there are more books to read and review, a whole box full of them, one of which I finished the other night, a frothy Xian romance in Amish country. The tale has high flown ideals that don't quite make it where the ink hits the page with its clich├ęd romantic stereotypes and villain. The author needs to get out and about more and read more about the subjects she uses for her book. It's all right in its way and has a few decent moments but the story gets lost in garbled language and it seems the author isn't quite sure whether she is writing a literary or a genre novel.

On that note, I have a couple of stories of my own to finish this weekend that I've piddled about with for far too long, long enough that the characters are disturbing my sleep when I want to travel elsewhere during the dark hours while my body energizes for another day of work. It's annoying, but I shouldn't have put them off so long. Sometimes my job sucks the last bit of juice from my fingers and my brain and leaves me nearly phobic when in proximity to the keyboard. But I did relax a bit last night and watched Stardust a second time. I had no idea Neil Gaiman had such range and such a light touch with fantasy. I've always thought of him as primarily a dark urban fantasy writer whose work borders on horror and encompasses much broader concepts. Time to check out more of his work -- if I can find a little time.

The movie is a delightful mix of allegory and fantasy and the cast is wonderful. Clare Danes does a creditable and believable British accent but Michelle Pfeiffer edges a bit into American, although on the whole she is on the mark. There are the usual elements of witches and princesses and princes and pirates and enchanted supernumeraries but each is remarkably well fitted to the story as a whole and doesn't over shadow the main characters. They are more of a generous pinch of spice and herbs at just the right moment. The whole is imaginative and momentarily heavy on the saccharine without being over powering, such as during Yvaine's discourse on love. The whoopsie Captain Shakespeare is both frightening and endearing with his mincing, lisping playacting in front of his mirror during a battle on deck in his pink dress while fluttering a pink ostrich feather fan with muscular and tattooed hands, proving once again that DeNiro is versatile and has an excellent sense of comic timing. Even as a time ravaged witch whose beauty crumbles the more magic she uses, Pfeiffer is enchanting and Danes is ethereal and irritating and marvelous as the fallen star. Danes provides the perfect foil for Charlie Cox's Tristan who grows from wide-eyed youth to determined hero during the course of the adventure.

So, as the cool late spring air drifts through the house and clears out the fug of weekday working frustration, I am going to luxuriate in a warm shower, wash my hair with lavender and rosemary, begin a load of laundry after I dress and venture out into the sunshine with bright hopes for a sprinkle of rain to wash away the cobwebs and provide a cooling draught for my marketing trip.

That is all. Disperse.

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