Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Jack O' Lantern


The Addams Family and Bela Lugosi's Dracula

We watched several episodes of the old Addams Family TV series, including Halloween with the Addams Family, which had the kids dressing up for trick-or-treat in frightening costumes of everyday people and bank robbers playing Bob for Crab at their Halloween party.

Bela Lugosi's Dracula is still the one all others are measured by. We watched it tonight and once again thrilled to the vampire legend. Lugosi's "official" web site is here.


1001Flicks has a review of Dracula.

Reflecting the Sky, by S. J. Rozan

I finished Reflecting the Sky, by S. J. Rozen, as part of my plan to become more familiar with mystery novels. This book is one in the Bill Smith/Lydia Chin series and takes place in Hong Kong. There are ashes to be delivered, a kidnapping and a smuggling ring that's been in operation for decades. The book was interesting, but I didn't enjoy it enough to seek out others in the series while I still have so many in my tbr stack.

The Mummy

#2 Son and I watched Karloff's The Mummy during lunch today. This is a wonderful film.

Scary Mary

You'll never see Mary Poppins in quite the same way again.

Happy Hallowe'en!

Photo from 3drt.com

Halloween was always great fun for me as a child. My favorite costume was a witch, and I dressed as a witch most years for Trick-or-Treating.

Now, not only am I grown, my kids are too old for Trick-or-Treating. We watch DVD's that seem suitable for the season. Here's a list of some we try to watch during October:

The Halloween Tree. This is a video version of Ray Bradbury's book which uses a group of trick-or-treating kids and a trip back in time to explore some common Halloween traditions. We _love_ this one and have since it first came out. It's only available on VHS right now, but we're on constant look-out for a DVD version.

It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. A classic. I remember when this one came out, too , and it's a long-time family favorite.

Winnie the Pooh Boo to You Too. We still get a kick out of this one even though my youngest is 16.

The Nightmare Before Christmas. I remember the controversy over this one, and there are still some well-meaning people who condemn this video, but I honestly think none of them can have actually seen it. It's a touching story and filled with glee -in a spooky kind of way.

Beetlejuice. Not about Halloween at all, but a ghost story where the ghosts aren't the scary ones.

The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. This is another ghost story, but not a scary one. This one is from 1947, set in 1900 and stars Gene Tierney, Rex Harrison and George Sanders. This is one of my all-time favorite movies.

The Ghost and Mr. Chicken. What a romp! I'm not a big Don Knotts fan, but I've liked this one since I saw it in the theater when it was released.

The Hound of the Baskervilles. We like the Jeremy Brett version of this Sherlock Holmes story best.

King Kong. The old 1933 one with Fay Wray.

Godzilla. The old one meant for American audiences with the Raymond Burr inserts.

Phantom of the Opera. There are 2 of these we like -the older silent with Lon Chaney and the less old (g) one with Claude Rains.

Creature From the Black Lagoon.

The Wolf Man. This is my favorite of the monster movies. A classic tragedy.

Frankenstein. The Boris Karloff original.

Dracula. There are several of these. Our favorites are the Bela Lugosi one and the Louis Jourdan one. The Bela Lugosi one is the classic, of course. This entry has been edited to remove the Frank Langella joke and suggest our real preference for Louis Jourdan. This Dracula was a made-for-tv production and is nigh onto impossible to find. It is fairly faithful to the book and has some interesting 70's special effects. The Murnau classic silent Nosferatu is also well worth seeing.

The Mummy. The real one with Karloff.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. We have the John Barrymore silent version.

Cat People. The 1942 version.

And there's Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein. But only if you've already seen the originals.

We always carve a Jack O' Lantern. The pumpkin is on the patio awaiting the moment of transformation. Here's a photo of last year's:

Monday, October 30, 2006

Greek Mythology Personality Test


66% Extroversion, 86% Intuition, 55% Emotiveness, 52% Perceptiveness

Funloving, talkative, flamboyant, social... you are most like Aphrodite. You love parties, people, fashion, and sex. You're impulsive, inconcise, and you find crowds and parties to be energizing. You're optimistic, upbeat, and frequently irrational. You hate structure and routine, and you don't like know-it-alls. You're not really a "big picture" person, however, and might not always assess the consequences of your actions before taking them. You do have a very strong hedonistic streak, though, and this gives you a magnetic personality. You dislike people who think too much.

Like Dionysus, you classify your life as a search for meaning and, when things go wrong, you can become manipulative. To others, you can often seem directionless and impulsive, but you make sure that everything that you do is in line with your strong, internally motivated set of moral guidelines. Your funloving streak, although your greatest asset, can sometimes prevent you from realizing goals or staying on task. As accepting as you are of other people, you have a great need to be accepted yourself, and this can sometimes lead to an overdemonstration of affection and insincerity on your part.

Famous People like you: Elvis, Eva Gabor, Paris Hilton, Elizabeth Taylor

Stay away from: Atlas, Prometheus, The Oracle, Daedalus, and Hermes.

Seek out: Pan, Dionysus, Apollo

My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Extroversion
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Intuition
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Emotiveness
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Perceptiveness

Link: The Greek Mythology Personality Test written by Aleph_Nine on OkCupid

I found the meme here at livejournal.

Weight Training

I did Kathy Smith's Lift Weights to Lose Weight 1 this afternoon but without the abs section. I hope to maintain a MTh plan for using the weight training DVD's.

More on Eric Newby

I saw this new article from WorldHum today. It has a few links for more information. Eric Newby was a treasure and his writing will provide continued enjoyment.

photo of Tirich Mir, highest point in the Hindu Kush, by John Jackson found at Wikipedia.

Light, by M. John Harrison

I found myself quite confused reading this book. I am glad I read it, but I doubt I'll read it again. It took a while for me to get into it and get any real sense of what the characters were. InfinityPlus has a review here. Bookslut's review is here. Harrison's web site is here, and a wiki entry on him is here.

Walking Again

We did our 3 1/4 mile walk in 50 minutes and 9 seconds this morning. It's light early in the morning now and easier for me to get on up and do the walk.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Ghost and Mr. Chicken

Tonight we all watched The Ghost and Mr. Chicken. I've never been a Don Knotts fan, but for some reason I like this one. #2 Son did not remember it since we last watched it so many years ago. This is a new DVD for us; it also includes 3 other Don Knotts movies.


The Firm Cardio

I did The Firm's Super Cardio Mix DVD this afternoon, and I'm not going to keep this one. I have to do too much adjustment to the routines, as there's entirely too much jumping and hopping for my fitness level. I'll pass this one along to someone who will benefit from the challenge.

Cat People

This afternoon #2 Son and I watched Cat People. This was his first time to see this eerie movie, which is a much more subtle and nuanced effort than the graphic violence-filled special-effects-happy 1982 remake. It could be called psychological thriller rather than horror, since horror these days seems to mean shock and slasher films. Simone Simon was perfect as Irena Dubrovna, a young Serbian immigrant who falls in love with an all-American architect but fears that she is doomed by her evil ancestry. Simon died in 2005 at the age of 93. The film was directed by Jacques Tourneur and produced by Val Lewton.

You can watch it online at this link. Here's a trailer:

Roger Ebert considered it a Great Movie. Filmsite has an article.

Only the Cinema has a review which concludes,
Cat People is an incredibly effective piece of psychological horror, rising far above its low-budget genre origins and creating an enduring work of psycho-sexual exploration.

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 34 (King James Version)

1 I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul shall make her boast in the LORD: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.
3 O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together.
4 I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
5 They looked unto him, and were lightened: and their faces were not ashamed.
6 This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.
8 O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.
9 O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.
10 The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing.
11 Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
12 What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good?
13 Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.
14 Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.
15 The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.
16 The face of the LORD is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
18 The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.
20 He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken.
21 Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.
22 The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

The Beatles in 1963


Tonight we watched Frankenstein, released in 1931, and Bride of Frankenstein, released in 1935. They both starred Boris Karloff as The Monster and Colin Clive as Dr. Frankenstein; but Fritz, the assistant played in the earlier movie by Dwight Frye, died in that film, so the assistant in the later movie was re-named Karl but still played by Dwight Frye. Interestingly, Frye's character got killed by the Monster in the second movie, too. I liked Frye as Renfield in the Bela Lugosi Dracula. Mae Clarke played Elizabeth, Dr. Frankenstein's fiancee, in the 1st movie, but the character was played by Valerie Hobson in Bride of Frankenstein.

9/20/2007: 1001Flicks has a review of Frankenstein.

Walking with Leslie Sansone

Today I did her 3-mile walk, but I did the arm movements without the stretchie.

Weight: 90 pounds

Waist/Hip ratio: 8.2

Friday, October 27, 2006

Rain, rain, go away

It was pouring at our wake-up time, so we didn't walk. I did 1st Richard Simmons Sweatin' to the Oldies videotape. It's about 45 minutes long. I'm a bit sore from yesterday's weight training, so a light work-out didn't feel so bad.

We took Mother supper, presents, cake and ice cream for her birthday tonight.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Gaudi Afternoon

Tonight I watched Gaudi Afternoon. You can watch a trailer here. It's based on a Cassandra Reilly mystery by Barbara Wilson. I haven't read any of the books, but I am reading mysteries this year, so I guess I'll be adding her to my tbr pile. I would never have picked this movie out of a stack, but it was great fun. It's all about mothers. Kinda.

I did get a kick out of what seemed to me to be a play on the name "Gaudy Night". This Lord Peter Wimsey novel by Dorothy Sayers is a different kind of mystery.

I will never hear this song in quite the same way again.


Today I did Kathy Smith's Lift Weights to Lose Weight 2, which was a challenge for me. A 60-second clip can be viewed here. I could do most of it and like it well enough to use regularly. I hope to do some kind of weight training 2x a week.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Monday, October 23, 2006


We overslept our walking time this morning, so I did Kathy Smith's Step Workout. I haven't used the step enough to really have the moves down good, so I leave out a lot of the arm movements trying to get my feet right. That makes the DVD a lot easier.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Eric Newby Has Died

Eric Newby, author of _A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush_ a delightful travel narrative considered a classic in the field, has died at 86 of natural causes.

I saw the news at World Hum. Google has links to articles on the sad news here.

Richard Simmons Again

We don't walk on Sundays, but I did the Richard Simmons Sweat and Shout DVD tonight. It's got a good beat, and it's easy to dance to. grin

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Long and Slow

We walked 1 1/2 hours this morning -no idea what our distance was, but we walked an easy pace.

weight: 90 pounds

Friday, October 20, 2006

Almost under 50

Today was chilly. We made our 3 1/4 mile walk in 50 minutes and 7 seconds.

I tried the Richard Simmons Sweatin' to the Oldies 3 DVD tonight.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Dehydration is a Bad Thing

I didn't drink enough water before I left the house this morning and could really tell it by the 4th lap. We walked the 3 1/4 miles in 50 minutes 33 seconds, which I felt wasn't bad, considering. I had a glass of water, a bowl of raisin bran and a cup of suisse mocha when I got home and felt much better. I didn't do a great job of stretching after the walk, but nothing's perfect.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Slow Day

Today's 3 1/4 mile walk took 51 minutes and 30 seconds. It was in the low 60's when we started and is expected to get into the 80's before the day is out. Pretty, sunny day, but not really Fall weather.

Later in the day I did a Kathy Smith video: Weight-Loss Work-out It's still too much for me to work through this video without modifications. There are times I just don't use my arms at all, because it gets my heart rate too high. It's not difficult to do, given the changes I make, and it's an hour of aerobics and light strength training. The morning walks don't make me sweat at all, and I just feel like I'm accomplishing more if I add a little extra exercise later in the day when I can.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Habeas Corpus R.I.P.

An explanation of why Habeas Corpus is so important is here at LewRockwell.com. A history of Habeas Corpus can be found here at HabeasCorpus.net.

Photo from Flickr.

In-Home Walking

We overslept this morning and didn't have time to walk at the park before our first appointments elsewhere, so I did Leslie Sansone's 4-mile walk. This took an hour and includes warm-up, cool-down and some stretching. This will be perfect for those days when it's pouring down rain or there's ice on the ground. It's easy to do, but I worked up a sweat.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Drizzling/Breezy Walk

It was 57 when we started out this morning, and we while we walked (3 1/4 miles in 48 minutes and 30 seconds) it was drizzling when it wasn't breezy. I think as it gets colder warming up at the park before we start the track walking will be counter-productive. I may decide to just use the walk to the park as my warm-up.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Tibetan Refugees Shot

BoingBoing has the story. Like the people of Tibet don't have enough problems....

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 22 (King James Version)

1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
2 O my God, I cry in the day time, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
4 Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.
5 They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded.
6 But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.
7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,
8 He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.
9 But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts.
10 I was cast upon thee from the womb: thou art my God from my mother's belly.
11 Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help.
12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.
13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
19 But be not thou far from me, O LORD: O my strength, haste thee to help me.
20 Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.
21 Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.
22 I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.
23 Ye that fear the LORD, praise him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him, all ye the seed of Israel.
24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.
25 My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him.
26 The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the LORD that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.
27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.
28 For the kingdom is the LORD's: and he is the governor among the nations.
29 All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul.
30 A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.
31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Long, Slow Walk

We based our walk on taking a nice easy pace and walking for 90 minutes. It's a beautiful clear day with an expected high of 72.

weight: 90 pounds

Friday, October 13, 2006

Southern Festival of Books

Mother and I went to the Southern Festival of Books today. This is the second time it's been held in Memphis, and we've enjoyed it both times. We got downtown and parked by 10 and stayed until 4:30. We saw all the displays, ate chicken kabobs and listened to several speakers. We heard J. A. Jance, 3 women involved in writing a book on various spiritualities of Southern women, and Ace Atkins.

The one disappointment was that the antiquarian booksellers that were there last time were not there this time, and I had so looked forward to browsing their offerings.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Short Walk

We were running late again this morning so walked 2 miles in 30 minutes and 44 seconds. We plan on walking again tonight since #2 Son's fencing has been cancelled for Fall Break.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

It's time to start watching Hallowe'en videos, and tonight we watched It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. We enjoy this every year even as the kids get older.

Another Under-50 Day

Our 3 1/4 mile walk took 49 minutes 45 seconds. We're in week 10 of this chart.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Met Target Again

For the second day in a row we met our target time of under 50 minutes for 3 1/4 miles. Today we made it in 49 minutes and 37 seconds. It was in the low 60's when we set out. High today is predicted to be in the low 80's.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Met the Target

Our current target is 3 1/4 miles in under 50 minutes, and today we did it in 49 minutes and 44 seconds. This was our fastest 1st lap ever at 7 minutes 47 seconds. The westher was clear and cool (mid 50's), and I wore my sweat pants.

weight: 91 pounds

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Rejoice in God's Saints

Listen to the tune here.

1st verse (text by Fred Pratt Green):

Rejoice in God's saints, today and all days!
A world without saints forgets how to praise.
Their faith in acquiring the habit of prayer,
their depth of adoring, Lord, help us to share.

What is Spiritual Formation?

Definition of Spiritual Formation:

Spiritual formation is the process of being conformed to the image of Christ by the gracious working of God's spirit, for the transformation of the world.

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 25 (NRSV)

1 To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
2 O my God, in you I trust; do not let me be put to shame; do not let my enemies exult over me.
3 Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame; let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
4 Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths.
5 Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long.
6 Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.
7 Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness’ sake, O Lord!
8 Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
9 He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.
10 All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.
11 For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.
12 Who are they that fear the Lord? He will teach them the way that they should choose.
13 They will abide in prosperity, and their children shall possess the land.
14 The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him, and he makes his covenant known to them.
15 My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.
16 Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.
18 Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.
19 Consider how many are my foes, and with what violent hatred they hate me.
20 O guard my life, and deliver me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
21 May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you.
22 Redeem Israel, O God, out of all its troubles.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Downtown fires

1st United Methodist Church, the oldest congregation in the city, burned down early this morning. It's a sad day.

We got a late start because we were watching the news and noly walked 1 1/2 miles this morning.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Craft Fair

We went to the Pink Palace Craft Fair today. It was a great day and a much better fair than last year. I bought a beautiful turquoise bead necklace with a pendant with a picture of Mary. We bought a copper ornament for the patio.

We walked our 3 1/4 miles in 51 minutes.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Warm, Unseasonably Warm

Temps are averaging 10 degrees warmer than is usual for this time of year, but it was pleasant enough for our morning walk. We walked 3 1/4 miles in 50 minutes and 47 seconds.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

More on DRM

BoingBoing has some suggestions on how to observe the day.

When you buy music with DRM someone else decides where you can play it.

Take Back Your Rights: Fight DRM

What would a world with DRM look like?

Once that camel gets its nose in the tent the abuse will increase over time until freedom as we know it will be only a memory.

Day Against DRM

10 Things You Can Do from DefectiveByDesign.org:

Work your way through these actions (some or all) and spread the word that DRM is Defective By Design. Your target is to get the word out to at least 100 people today. and that is easier than you think. Just look at the ideas below and see that you can have some fun and have an impact on the future story of DRM.

* Email your friends and family, use our prepared text. This is the big one - attack that address book!!
* Add this text to your email signature for the day.
* Post on a forum or message board that you subscribe to.
* Download and print this sign and hang one at your desk, the office water cooler, or in an elevator.
* Download and print this leaflet and give it to coworkers or others you see today, maybe even distribute them on your lunch hour or during your commute.
* Sign the Bono petition. We are getting ready to get his answer.
* Google bomb DRM by adding this link to your website or any web page you can edit.
* Digg the day of action
* Watch these videos on YouTube send them to friends and rate them.
* Photograph your actions and post them to Flickr tagged with "dayagainst drm defectivebydesign".

There's much more at the Defective By Design site.

Monday, October 02, 2006

3 1/4 miles

We increased our distance to 3 1/4 miles today. Our time was 51 minutes and 14 seconds. We're aiming at decreasing our time to 50 minutes or less. We're adapting the schedule here. We're starting in week 10 of the intermediate schedule.

And I had a chocolate iced donut for breakfast.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 124 (KJV)

1 If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say;
2 If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, when men rose up against us:
3 Then they had swallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled against us:
4 Then the waters had overwhelmed us, the stream had gone over our soul:
5 Then the proud waters had gone over our soul.
6 Blessed be the LORD, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth.
7 Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped.
8 Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.