June 2014 NaBloPoMo: I Posted, I Commented, I Made A List & Now I’m Finished

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The final writing prompt for June 2014 NaBloPoMo is:

“Leave your readers this month with commentary about their comments.”

My commentary is: 

You, my gentle readers, are the best.  I’m grateful for your kind interest, thought-filled comments and support.  I realize that you arrived here from all over the place:

I appreciate you making your way here, and as a way of saying thank you I’ve compiled the following list of everyone with a blog who commented on The Spectacled Bean during this month.

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My List Of Blogs Written By People Who Know How To Comment

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Doesn’t Everyone Have A Sofa In The Middle Of Their Kitchen?

I’ve gotten away from talking about our home redecoration projects here on The Spectacled Bean. I don’t know why, because they continue on behind the scenes and influence my life every day.

Often because the project is in the middle of everything.

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That being said, now that I’m in the final days of NaBloPoMo June 2014 and I need something to write about, I’ll revert to my blogging roots and tell you what we’re up to around Chez Bean.

In July or August when furniture goes on sale, we are going to buy a new sofa and chair for the TV room.  This is why the current sofa got itself moved into the kitchen.  I needed to get an idea of what the TV room would look like without a large blue object influencing me.

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Now having seen the TV room, sans blue, with my makeshift ottoman-esque example of what a khaki-gold sofa might look like against the wall, I think that a neutral-colored, nubby-textured sofa and chair will look great in this room.  With lots of colorful pillows, of course.

So that, my gentle readers, is what’s going on here… right now… in the middle of our kitchen.

Even Though The Hallmark Movie Channel Has Betrayed Me, I Have Learned A Lesson

WHILE I HESITATE TO ADMIT that I’m aware of anything as sappy as The Hallmark Movie Channel, I feel that I must share with you, my gentle readers, how they have betrayed my forgiving nature.

This is a straightforward story in which I was willing to overlook their sentimental twaddle basic programming because every afternoon they were showing The Good Wife, an award-winning TV show that I’ve always wanted to see. 

In fact, I had even begun to arrange my day in such a way as to make certain that I caught at least one episode of The Good Wife, a modern-day TV show that features a strong female lead in difficult situations that she handles without Prince Charming rescuing her.

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Above is the Hallmark Movie Channel schedule for The Good Wife in which we see that the Hallmark Movie Channel just stopped showing The Good Wife.  * bippity boppity boo*  It’s gone.  Wave bye-bye.

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FURTHER, I’LL EVEN ADMIT THAT last Friday afternoon when I viewed what has now become my last episode of The Good Wife, a well-paced finely nuanced TV show, I was so thrilled by the cliff hanger plot line that I spent moments of my weekend looking forward to seeing the next episode on Monday afternoon.

But it was not to be.  No, when I sat down on Monday afternoon to watch The Good Wife, a smart TV show filled with legal issues and moral quandaries, it was not there.  Instead, The Hallmark Movie Channel was airing…  [ready for this?]… Diagnosis Murder, an old-time TV show, starring Dick Van Dyke, that I vaguely remember as something my mother used to watch way back when.

I’m hurt by this betrayal;  I won’t lie.  But mostly it confirms my suspicions that cable TV’s death is closer than we think it is.  Thanks to The Hallmark Movie Channel I’ve now learned for certain that web-based programming, like Netflix or Hulu, is the way to watch TV shows when your life is busy– and you can’t dork around with cable channels.

More Links For Eggheads: Know Thyself Better Edition

… because information is FUN dammit.

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“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet;” ~ William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

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√  to grasp the implications of what it means to be your age, go here.  MILDLY UNSETTLING.

√  to find out what your birth month color says about you, go here.  FUN.

√  to determine which goddess you are and how to dress yourself like she would dress today, go here.  INFORMATIVE.

√  to understand how your emotional intelligence influences your personality, go hereFASCINATING.

√  to learn which Shakespeare character you are, go here.  JUST BECAUSE.

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Pretentious Much?


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HAVE YOU EVER HEARD yourself say something and think to yourself:

Did I really say that?  Honestly, who am I?

Zen-Den and I, with some friends, were at an art show in a park that is along a river.  We’ve been to this particular show many times together, and we each have our favorite artists who we want to checkout.  It makes for a predictable, leisurely afternoon.

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Z-D AND I WENT into one particular artist’s tent to see what he had going on.  For Z-D this guy is the highlight of the show, so he stopped to talk with the man.  I looked around but didn’t see anything that I wanted so I went outside to stand with our friends who were waiting.

When Z-D caught up with us he hadn’t bought a thing.  He turned to me and said: “what did you think of his stuff this year?”  And then I said the most out-of-character statement that I may have ever said.  I replied:

“Oh, his work is so derivative now that it’s passé.”

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THERE WAS A PAUSE while all of us looked at each other– and then we started laughing so hard that we had to stop looking at each other because of my absurd statement.

Accurate as it may be, I have no idea where that sentence came from.  I’m not exactly an art critic [or a critic of anything, for that matter].  All I can think is that I’ve read too many scholarly articles on Arts & Letters Daily.  Might be time for me to focus more on People magazine.

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I’M GOING TO FILE this charming little story, ridiculous as it is, under:

Do Not Take Yourself Too Seriously.  

Derivative? Passé?  Who says things like that?  Not me, usually. That’s for sure.  

Desperately Seeking Gladys Kravitz

Late Tuesday afternoon we received an email from the HOA.  The message in the email told us that there had been 4 burglaries in the past 10 days in one part of our large subdivision.

Even though the break-ins are miles from where we live, the HOA asked that all residents turn on their outdoor lights at night.  This is because the burglaries happened in the middle of night while families were at home, asleep upstairs.

[I’ll wait here while what I just wrote sinks into your brain.  At home. Asleep. While having your house burgled. YIKES!]

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First of all let me tell you that we are a cooperative bunch of suburbanites when under attack.  To wit, the last few nights our part of the subdivision has been so well-lit that pilots would feel comfortable landing their planes on our streets.

[So that’s a good thing.  For us.  And for Duke Energy, as well.  *sigh*]

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And secondly, while I’m not thrilled with these latest developments, they do underscore the need for everyone who lives around here to be more aware of everyone & everything that goes on around here.  That is to say, it’s time for you, my lovely neighbors, to look up from your smart phones and actually interact with your environment.

You know, like we did in the dark ages when phones with cords plugged into walls.  And neighbors said “hello” to each other when they met on the street.  And burglars knew that somewhere in every neighborhood was a nosy, noisy Gladys Kravitz who saw everything.

[Oddly enough, that’s who we need around here.  Her prying eyes would be most helpful right about now, don’t you think?] 

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It’s 10:00 a.m. Friday morning and we just received this email update from our HOA:

“… we learned that there was another burglary attempt around 3am this morning at XXXX Drive. The police spotted the intruders before they were able to enter the home. The accomplice was caught, but the other burglar was able to get away.”

Now how long until the accomplice turns on the other burglar?

As Unlikely As This Sounds, We Visited A Midwestern Castle

ONCE UPON A TIME… a few weekends ago… Zen-Den and I finally visited a southern Ohio castle that I’ve heard about for decades.

The Castle and the surrounding gardens are officially named Chateau Laroche.  They were built by an eccentric genius named Harry Andrews, who after serving in WWI decided to promote peace and build his own castle based on the ones he saw in Europe during the war.

First, he used his smarts to become a knight by creating his own order, The Knights of the Golden Trail.  Then he built his castle using, among other things, the stones he found along the river.  After he built most of the castle, he moved into it and lived out his days in the slightly modernized parts of Chateau Laroche.

The castle, which is open to the public on a limited basis, is one of the most unusual, almost dilapidated historical properties I’ve ever wandered through, over and around.  Here are some photos.

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