Sunday, December 28, 2008

A Lazy Sunday Afternoon

I slept in this morning until about nine AM, which is late for me. I woke up once at about three AM, for no particular reason, stirred a bit and then fell back asleep. I must have needed the extra sleep because I was out like a light.

I had an interesting dream. I dreamt that I was going to a revival film festival and I was going to see a movie starring Humphrey Bogart called "The Magnificent Hush". The poster was classic film noir, black and white, with Bogart in suit and hat walking down a cobblestone alley, all shadows and light. It was a very vivid dream so I remember being excited about seeing a little known Bogart classic. I woke from the dream and I was disappointed that it was only a dream. There is no such movie. It did make me want to watch a Humphrey Bogart movie though.

Having slept late, I called a friend of mine to see if he wanted to get something for breakfast, but he declined. He has a relationship that has crumbled apart over the last couple of months and the stress has him very anti-social. He tends toward the anti-social side anyway, so his desire to pull in from the world is actually pretty common. His relationship problems are that usual mix of pride and miscommunication. I wish him luck and am wise enough in the ways of this world to stay the heck out of it.

Breakfast was cream cheese coffee cake (the last of it), coffee and orange juice. Then I came online for a while, chatted in AOL's Spiritual Insights room for about an hour. A good friend of mine there gave me a serious case of vacation envy as they are going fly fishing with friends over the New Year's stretch. I can fly fish, but I do not consider it among my major hobbies, but just thinking about it made me realize it has been a while since I have gone fishing - I went a couple of times last year, but that was about it. I think I am going to have to put "more fishing" on my new years resolution list for the coming year.

The sky was bright and blue and beckoning me outside, so I head out about ten AM. I went down to San Tomas Aquino River Park and took a nice long walk in the sun (it was still a little cool, but the sun on my face felt great). From there, I went over the AMC Saratoga theatre and took a chance on the movie "The Spirit". I admire the ground-breaking iconic work that was Will Eisner's "The Spirit". I admire the vivid visualization of Frank Miller. And I wanted to like the movie...

I like about forty minutes of it and what I liked were the minutes that were pure Frank Miller. However, as far as the whole movie goes - some of it just didn't work. So, I would recommend seeing it on DVD or free cable when the time comes, simply for the crossing of talent (Eisner and Miller) that it represents. Alas however, it is not a good movie.

After the movie, I walked over to REI Sporting Goods to see what they had on sale (mostly ski related stuff and winter clothing), then Staples (I was looking for one of the little accordian folders for keeping track of my bills). Ultimately, I did not get anything at either store. From there, I went over to the grocery store and stocked up on cupboard staples.

I need to make another trip sometime a little later this afternoon to get perishables, but my cupboard is stocked. Then, I stopped at strip mall that has a series of boutique stores and walked through it, partly to be in the sun and walking, and partly to see what was on post christmas sale. Each of the stores looked like it had been hit by a hurricane! All of the clerks and owners had that dazed "what happened to us" look. Retail is down overall, but they seemed to have done a brisk business.

Out of curiosity I asked at each store how they had done and the answer seemed to be pretty universal that they had done "better than they expected" in the pre and post Christmas phases. I took that as a good sign. (California, being the behemoth of a state that we are, tends to lead trends - I suspect we were the first into economic difficulties and will be the first out - assuming we don't go bankrupt because of our state legislatures inability to agree on a budget. Though, FYI, "budget chicken" is a familiar game here in CA.)

From there, I stopped at Goodwill, just to peek around and see if they had any hidden treasures, but I didn't really see anything. Again, my main motivation was to be out and wandering in the sun. From there, I wandered home, stopping at the liquor store to pick up some ice cream for a snack and the Sunday paper. The Sunday paper was long a ritual for me, but it was a ritual that I had gotten out of the habit of during last year and now I am trying to get back into the habit.

I am looking forward to the coming week. I only work three days and then I have a four day weekend. I haven't decided if I am going to do anything for New Years Eve. I dislike being out with the drunks, so my inclination is to stay home. Additionally, and in what is one of the big drawbacks of living in a major urban area at New Year's is all of the clubs double, triple, and quadruple their cover charges - just because they can. Even bars that normally do not run a cover charge run one on New Years. So, you end up paying twenty or thirty bucks just to get in the door of someplace you might enjoy. I pass.

All of that said though, sometimes I do like just...going out and watching the crowds on New Years Eve. So, I will probably make that decision when the time comes - but right now, the inclination is a quiet night at home, perhaps with friends, perhaps not. Now, I am going to eat my ice cream and read my paper.

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