Thursday, August 06, 2020

Jack

After spending just over two months in Georgetown working on some plans for the future, Jack traveled back to California. He caught a 6:15 am Southwest flight from Washington DC's National Airport to Chicago's Midway. He then boarded a 8:55 am flight from Midway to Sacramento. Landing in Sacramento just after 11 am, Sharon scooped him up.

Tuesday, August 04, 2020

Bryce Point Puzzle

When we first began to shelter-in-place in March, we started an Amsterdam puzzle on the kitchen counter. When Sharon and Jack finished it, I set out a Bryce Canyon Puzzle. It turned out to be extremely difficult. As Drew pointed out in late May, the colors on the box and the picture in the box of the puzzle were not true to the puzzle pieces. Additionally, there are some amazing changes in color from piece to piece. We finally got it finished!

Monday, August 03, 2020

Exercise Room

Over the last three weekends, we have completely remodeled the exercise room.  This included emptying the closet, the old bookcases and the old entertainment center, multiple loads to Goodwill, a quarter load of trash picked up by 1-800-GOT-JUNK, a fresh paint scheme and a new entertainment center.  The new entertainment center took me more than six hours to build and hoist into place.  


Sunday, August 02, 2020

2020 Kings versus Magic {virtual}

I am not sure when we will be able to attend the Kings games in person again...  Sunday afternoon, I watched the Sacramento Kings versus Orlando Magic NBA game while running on the treadmill.  Behind by 24 points at half-time and 35 points at the end of the third quarter, the Kings lost the game by the score of 132 to 116.

Harry Giles was the Kings leading scorer.  In twenty minutes, he had 23 points on 9 for 11 from the field, 0 for 1 from three and 5 for 6 from the free throw line.  He also had eight rebounds.

The Magic had three players with more than 20 points: Aaron Gordon had 22 points; Nikola Vucevic scored 23, and; Terrance Ross added 25.

I was frankly never a fan of Grant Napear.  I enjoyed listening to Gary Gerould do the play by play for the game.  

After the game finished, Gerould noted that the game was disheartening and/or disappointing; this summed up my feelings perfectly.  The Kings looked like a team that had never practiced together.  It didn't look like they were running any offense.

A log of 2019-2020 Kings games that I saw in person or watched virtually is here.  With Marvin Bagley hurt again, it has been a very disappointing season.

Saturday, August 01, 2020

Dos Coyotes Border Cafe

After spending the loin's share of the day finishing up the exercise room, we continued our Saturday night pandemic traditional of getting curbside take-out.  We got food from Dos Coyotes Border Cafe.  I had a Shrimp Taco & Chicken Enchilada Plate, while Sharon had a Mahi Mahi Seafood Burrito.

We finished the day watching an episode of season one of Downton Abbey.  Afterwards, we watched the first episode of season one of The Mandalorian on Disney+.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Greyhound

Greyhound poster.jpegSaturday night, Sharon and I watched Greyhound.  The film has been advertised heavily on the AppleTV; a trailer for the movie has been running at the top of the home page.

Greyhound is a 2020 American war film directed by Aaron Schneider.  It stars and was written by Tom Hanks.  The film is based on the 1955 novel The Good Shepherd by C. S. Forester.  It also stars Stephen Graham, Rob Morgan, and Elisabeth Shue. 

The plot follows a US Navy Commander on his first war-time assignment in command of a multi-national escort group defending a merchant ship convoy under attack by submarines in early-1942 during the Battle of the Atlantic.  The plot focuses on the multiple day transit of the "Black Pit."  This is the Mid-Atlantic gap where they are out of range of protective air cover.

Greyhound was initially scheduled to be theatrically released in the United States on June 12, 2020 by Sony Pictures, but was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The distribution rights were then sold to Apple TV+, which released the film digitally on July 10, 2020.

I enjoyed the movie a lot.  I recommend it.  Like 1917, It would have been a nice movie to have seen in the theater with a large screen and a dolby sound system.  With a running of length of only 91 minutes, it is short.

Footnote: The only remaining Fletcher-class destroyer still in her World War II configuration is now a museum ship berthed on the Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  The USS Kidd is a National Historic Landmark.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Brittany Runs A Marathon

Last Friday night, Sharon and I watched Brittany Runs A Marathon.  We discovered the movie while we were surfing through Amazon Prime on the AppleTV.

The film is a 2019 American comedy film written and directed by Paul Downs Colaizzo in his directorial debut. It stars Jillian Bell, Michaela Watkins, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Lil Rel Howery, and Micah Stock.

Brittany Runs A Marathon follows an overweight woman in New York City who sets out to lose weight and train for the city's annual marathon. The story of Brittany was inspired by Colaizzo's roommate, Brittany O'Neill, who appears in photos before the end credits.

It had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival on January 28, 2019 and was released on August 23, 2019, by Amazon Studios. Principal photography began in October 2017 in New York City. The climactic scene was filmed during the 2017 New York City Marathon with three filming crews working simultaneously to cover race.

Last week, Sharon and I started watching Ozark again; we watched the first three episodes of season one last year, but got sidetracked. After watching Ozark, I needed something light and life affirming.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Facetime with Drew and Shannon

Sharon and I finished the day connecting with Drew and Shannon via Facetime.  We spent some time planning the upcoming vacation at Sea Ranch.  I am really looking forward to the trip.

More than twenty years ago in the summer of 1999, Sharon and I took Drew, Morgan and Jack to Sea Ranch.  Jack was less than a year old.  [Note to self], I need to find some pictures from that trip.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Survivor: Redemption Island (Season 22)

Last week, Sharon and I finished watching Survivor: Redemption Island. It is the twenty-second season of Survivor.

It premiered on February 16, 2011. Filming took place from August to September 2010. The season was filmed near San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua. The show featured returning players Russell Hantz and Rob Mariano and 16 new players to Survivor.

Mariano was named the winner in the final episode on May 15, 2011, defeating Phillip Sheppard and Natalie Tenerelli in an 8–1–0 vote. In addition, Mariano won $100,000 as the "Sprint Player of the Season."

After seeing Boston Rob and Amber on the current season of Survivor (Winners at War), we watched them in season seven of the Amazing Race and season eight of Survivor [Amber won]. After watching these other seasons, I wanted to see Boston Rob win. I am pretty sure that I watched this season when it first aired; I remember Phillip...

Boston Rob also appeared in season four (Marquesas) and season twenty (Heroes vs. Villains) of survivor. Amber first appeared in season two (The Australian Outback) of survivor. They also appeared together on season eleven (All-Stars) of the Amazing Race. At some point, we will probably get around to watching these seasons.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

More than 10,000 steps a day for a year

Over the last year, I have taken more than 10,000 steps a day every day. Based on the Withings app, I have more than 7 million steps in the last year and have averaged about 19,300 steps a day.

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Refreshing the Exercise Room

After a trip to home depot on Friday night, we spent a long day prepping and painting the exercise room.  We are completely refreshing the room.  In a addition to a new paint scheme, we are taking out the old bookcases and entertainment center, rotating the orientation of the room and installing a new entertainment center.

Friday, July 24, 2020

Majka Pizzeria and Bakery

After spending the afternoon visiting with her brother, Sharon picked up a curbside takeout pizza from Majka Pizzeria and Bakery.  It was sweet corn, zucchini, mozz, feta, evoo and cilantro+lime. The pizza was very good.  We found out about the restaurant from one of our neighbors.

After a trip to home depot to pick up painting supplies, we finished the day watching Brittany Runs a Marathon.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

The Last Dance

After finishing the first season of Saturday Night Live, I started watching The Last Dance while running on the treadmill.  The ten part series highlights the career of Michael Jordan with particular focus on his last season with the Chicago Bulls.  The documentary uses never-before aired footage from the 1997/98 Bulls season.

The episodes include: 
  • Episode I - Flashbacks chronicle Michael Jordan's college and early NBA days [drafted in 1984]. The Bulls make a preseason trip to Paris amid tension with GM Jerry Krause.
  • Episode II - Scottie Pippen [drafted in 1987] rises to become one of the NBA's best players. An injury early in Jordan's career shows distrust with Bulls management. Jordan broke his foot at the beginning of the 1985/86 season.
  • Episode III - Dennis Rodman's attitude and energy help the team win, but bring the drama off the court.  Rodman played for the Bulls 1995/96, 1996/97 and 1997/98 championship teams.  The Bulls struggle to overcome the Pistons in the late '80s.  The Bulls lost to the "Bad Boys" Pistons in the 1988/89 and 1989/90 Eastern Conference Finals.
  • Episode IV - Phil Jackson's unique philosophy and demeanor take the Bulls to the next level.  Jackson starting coaching the Bulls in the 1989/90 season.  The team finally gets past Detroit and earns a shot at an NBA title, which is a dream matchup against Magic Johnson, Rookie Vlade Divac and the Lakers.
  • Episode V - From Air Jordan and Be Like Mike to the 1992 NBA Finals and the Olympic dream team, Michael becomes a global cultural icon unlike any other.  Toni Kukoč plays for Croatia against the Dream Team.  Bulls beat the Trailbazers in the finals [Clyde Drexler, Ainge].
  • Episode VI - A revealing book--Jordan Rules--and scrutiny of his gambling put a dent in Michael's reputation, but he remains focused on winning a third straight title in 1993. Bulls beat Phoenix Suns [Barkley, Ainge, Kevin Johnson].
  • Episode VII - Crushed by the death of his father, a mentally exhausted Michael retires in 1993 – to play baseball. The Bulls move on with Scottie in the lead role.
  • Episode VIII - Michael's return energizes the Bulls, the city and the NBA, but a playoff loss in the second round to the Orlando Magic [Shaq, Hardaway, Horace Grant] in 1995 fuels him to work harder than ever to get back on top; this is rewarded with their fourth NBA championship over Seattle [Gary Payton, Shawn Kemp] in 1996, after a record-breaking 72-win season.
  • Episode IX - The Bulls face stiff challenges to their reign in 1997 against Utah and in 1998 versus Indiana. The Bulls beat Utah [Karl Malone, John Stockton] to five their fifth championship.  Role player Steve Kerr makes his mark on the dynasty.
  • Episode X - Battered and exhausted, the Bulls conclude their "Last Dance" with a sixth championship over the Jazz [Marlone, Stockton]. Michael, Phil, and others reflect on the end of their dynasty.
This documentary is very good.  I recommend it.  Recent interviews with the key people, including Jordan, make the film particularly powerful.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Wildwood Kitchen & Bar

Sharon and I had dinner on the patio at Wildwood Kitchen & Bar.  We split an order of hummus.  For entrees, Sharon had the happy hour fish tacos, while I had a seared ahi tuna sandwich [roasted poblano pepper, pickled jalapeño and onion, napa cabbage, toasted garlic bun, fries].

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Ancil Hoffman

Sharon played golf at Ancil Hoffman with Marlene late in the day.  We haven't seen Marlene and Phil since my birthday.

They finished playing 18, but it was getting very dark at the end.  While Sharon had four pars when we played last Friday, she said that she didn't play very well.

Monday, July 20, 2020

The Spy Who Dumped Me

Saturday night, Sharon and I watched The Spy Who Dumped Me on Amazon Prime on the AppleTV. Surfing through Amazon Prime the previous weekend, it was one of a couple of movie trailers we watched.

The Spy Who Dumped Me is a 2018 black comedy/spy thriller film directed by Susanna Fogel and co-written by Fogel and David Iserson. The film stars Mila Kunis, Kate McKinnon from Saturday Night Live, Justin Theroux, Sam Heughan, Hasan Minhaj and Gillian Anderson.

It follows two best friends who are chased by assassins through Europe after one of their ex-boyfriends turns out to be a CIA agent. I enjoyed the scenery; the movie includes several cities that I hope that we will be able to visit someday, including Vienna, Budapest and Berlin...

The film was released in the United States on August 3, 2018, by Lionsgate and grossed more than $75 million. It received mixed reviews from critics who questioned the film's intended genre and tone, but praised the performances.

The movie was mildly entertaining. I enjoyed it, but with so much streaming content available today, I don't recommend going out of your way to watch it.

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Catan

Drew, Jack and I played two games of Catan late Sunday afternoon. We played one game of Seafarers. While I was able to get logged into my account this time, I came in last in both games...

Saturday, July 18, 2020

44 Plus Years of Cassette Tapes

We are cleaning out and reorganizing the exercise room.  Amongst the stuff was a box of cassette tapes that I have been dragging around for decades. The oldest of these were recorded in the fall of 1976 during the first quarter of my sophomore year in college. 

Through the 1980s and 1990s, I ran with a Sony Walkman and this collection of music.  I am going to add a few of these albums and songs back into to my running playlist. 
 

Friday, July 17, 2020

Ancil Hoffman plus Matteo's

Sharon and I played golf with our neighbors Jim and Debi at Ancil Hoffman Golf Course.  We were originally going to play with Holly and Van, but Holly's back was acting up.

With a 8:44 am tee time, it took us about four hours and twenty minutes to play 18.  I struggled on two fronts.  My chipping digressed; I repeatedly skulled the ball across the green.  As I was starting to get into a groove, my left elbow starting acting up.  I had an MRI on my left elbow about two years ago.  I struggled on the back nine.

I ended up with a 118.  I feel like I should be able to do ten or fifteen strokes better...

After golf the four of us had lunch on the patio at Matteo's.  Sharon had a burger, while I had a shrimp and mango salad.