Sunday, December 31, 2017

Important Question About Chewbacca In The Last Jedi

A sad-eyed "Porg."
Over the holiday my family viewed “The Last Jedi,” a fine movie in that all the usual Star Wars stuff was delivered with a few twists.

Afterwards, as the sharp wits gathered to dissect the finer points, a debate ensued on what was being shown.

When Chewbacca arrived at the dreary island where Luke Skywalker had retired, he roasted a creature and was about to enjoy a big bite of the feast when he noted furry Porgs giving him the big, sad eyes.

My interpretation is that the Porgs were hungry and wanted some of the food, looking cute and cuddly to gain treats.

The daughter insists that Chewbacca had roasted a Porg and the Porg’s comrades were giving Chewbacca the stink eye for being cruel.

I think were Chewbacca eating a Porg then all the other Porgs would be hiding in fear of their lives, not wagering their well-being on the empathetic response of a walking carpet.

Both the daughter and myself are convinced we see the truth.

I await the opinion of the academics and serious amateurs.


Saturday, December 30, 2017

Milestones In Brooklyn

Over the winter break, our family went to New York City to visit relatives. Before going, the daughter voiced her interest in visiting Brooklyn to see the bench and tree in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden dedicated to her great-grandparents. She thought it would be a nice outing to go to someplace of historical import.

My grandparents individually came close to living 100 years in Brooklyn, so an outing to the “Old Country” was most appropriate.

In Manhattan, as we organized to go to Brooklyn, it became apparent that there was more going on than a team composed of three generations could accommodate. The youngest insisted on eating lunch at a restaurant called “Kimchi Grill,” while the daughter now prioritized seeing an art exhibit called “The Dinner Party” at the Brooklyn Museum.

Another interest of the daughter was to be more independent in New York, so the Brooklyn outing turned into a kids-doing-it-for-themselves thing. I gave each kid $40 and explained how the subway worked and wished them good luck.

My mother was worried I was too permissive. The daughter is almost 16 and the son 13, old enough to move around NYC without armed escorts.

As the kids navigated subway lines, the upper ages took a Lyft to Brooklyn. We saw the exhibits at the Brooklyn Museum and made it to the Botanic Garden, even finding the bench and tree with the commemorative plaques.

The kids made it to the museum but balked at paying the entry fee to enter the garden, as it is winter and there wasn’t much to see. I didn’t fault them for their thinking, feeling their great-grandparents would have been satisfied that their memory motivated the kids into exploring Brooklyn on their own.

The kids later reflected on the day, realizing the complexity of metro cards and the challenge of grumpy MTA workers.

Fusion Korean food, feminist art, independent offspring, grandparents memorialized – all in all, a good day.


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Box Of Snack Food Perfect Gift For 13-year-old

Opening this box was an unmitigated joy for the 13-year-old. Not only was the box full of candy and snacks, but they were from Israel and represented a new group of tastes and flavors.

Adding to the awesomeness of the experience, a uniform for the Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball club was also included.

We now have a well-fed superfan in Portland! Thanks to everyone.


Monday, December 18, 2017

I Love The Pacific Northwest

Early season conditions didn't dimish the joy of being outside and practicing a few turns.


Saturday, December 16, 2017

These Latkes Are Fried Extra Crispy

Always a debate how to do these things. I like to fill the largest cast-iron pan with peanut or canola oil and let `er rip.


Monday, December 11, 2017

Technological Health

Water-damaged snapshot of New Zealand. I use this picture as an illustration of evolving technology and it's a nice memory.
Every five years I replace my PC, even if it is meeting my needs and doesn't show any outward signs of impending catastrophic failure.

I do this because, like it or not, I now run my life, professional, social, recreational, through this computer and I require a robust system.

Each time I do this I worry all my data will be lost, I'll screw up my contacts, calendar, task lists. And these fears are well-founded. This time around I only mildly screwed up my task lists.

No matter how many times I take a new Windows PC out of the box and install Microsoft Office, I will still be baffled, confused, irritated by the difficulty of the process. The only wisdom I have gained is that now I know this frustration is a certainty and budget extra time and mental calories for it.

The main complaint this time around is that default settings for every conceivable thing are skewed toward Microsoft products and solutions, and it takes research to get things set up the way I want.

After a few days, I can start to relax with the notion I don't have to do this again for another five years. When I cool down from the trauma, I expect I will have a new perspective on how I use the computer as having to change so many settings makes me rethink my choices.

Like everything else, every so often it's good to update the system.


Saturday, December 9, 2017

Kid Poses Currency Question To Get Me To Say 420

Everything is so funny! The kid kept pestering me to look up the US dollar value of 439 Iceland Krona. When I said 420 he couldn't stop laughing -- 420 is code for smoke pot.

For the record, we have a drug-free household but are often amused at stoner culture.


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Blazer Star Ed Davis Taking Outsize Role In House


This October the son and I had the chance to sit courtside at a Blazers game against the Pacers in Indianapolis. We were thrilled to see Ed Davis use his 6'10'' and 250 lbs to play a very physical game in the key, with slam dunks, dramatic rebounds, pushing and knock-downs.

In the past, I considered my height advantage over the kid to be Yao Ming-like. The kid turns 13 tomorrow and has grown considerably. So, my height and weight advantage are similar to Ed Davis when compared to Damian Lillard (6'3", 195lbs).

All this is theoretical, as I haven't been able to beat the kid in one-on-one for years. 

But what I can do is yell Ed Davis! and then back into him as if I was moving him out of the way before taking a shot. I tell him this is good practice for playing against people much bigger than himself. 

Now he is the one yelling Ed Davis! and moving me out of the way. 

I guess I knew this, too, was coming.


Saturday, December 2, 2017

The Kid Is Known To Classmates

The son received the above refrigerator magnet from a classmate as a gift. I like to believe this reflects the kid expressing an articulate political philosophy in his 7th-grade class.


Friday, December 1, 2017

Kitchen Education

I was thinking about Venn diagrams when I came upon arranged the above. The cashew is both part of the provolone-cheese data set as well as the pomegranate-stain-on-the-cutting-board data set.

Conclusions of this exercise could be 1) It's lunchtime; 2) No children are in the house to make me feel self-conscious about doing this; 3) It's Friday and I'm getting loopy.