Sunday, April 26, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 16

Checking in for the week of April 19 through April 25.

Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (Joanne Fluke) - Another fun installment with Hannah, Norman, Mike, and the gang. I really enjoy this series. It's lighthearted (for a murder mystery) and the plot always pulls me along. It's definitely brain candy, but the characters are so familiar at this point that I can easily overlook the lack of "challenge" and simply enjoy the book for what it is. I had the motive figured out pretty quickly. I just needed the "who." I started to suspect a couple of chapters before it was revealed. Overall, a satisfying read.
Moving the Chains: Tom Brady and the Pursuit of Everything (Charles P. Pierce) - Plugging away at this one, but I can tell you right now: I don't appreciate the author's baseball snark.

I had a hankering for rigatoni with sausage and roasted peppers. This worked out well, since T had a hankering for Ring of Meat, which used up the remainder of the roasted peppers. We had meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans. And we were long overdue for a flank steak, which we served with broccoli and Thai Sweet Chili noodles. T did some barbecue chicken on the grill, which we had with corn (from the freezer) and we roasted up the rest of the potatoes with some seasonings. Friday night was a casual date night at Steak N Shake. Yum!

Got my hairs trimmed and that's about it.

Vanilla Cupcake (YC)
Lavender (YC) - I'm picky about my floral scents, but this one I like.
Blue Hydrangea (YC) - This is another I enjoy. It's an old one that I am finally burning. It manages to be both floral and clean-smelling.
Strawberry Buttercream (YC) - Berries and cream...dreamy.

It was a pretty crazy cloud week.

Wee pineapples. Squee! My husband is the pineapple whisperer.

Soft and dreamy.


Saturday, April 25, 2015

This Week on My TV: April 25, 2105

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Person of Interest, S4E20 Terra Incognita) LOL! Mr Finch looking up to see Root standing in front of him in a bridal gown and veil. -- I can never hold back a giggle when Fusco refers to "Glasses" and "Coco Puffs." -- The hallucinations/flashbacks between Mr Reese and Carter while Reese was trying not to die were a bit confusing. -- Are we *ever* going to see Shaw again??

**(Scandal, S4E19 I’m Just a Bill) Interesting case of the week, having Marcus be romantically involved with the mayor's wife, witness her murder, call Pope and Associates for Olivia's help, discover that it was the mayor who called the hit, reveal that the police are in the mayor's back pocket, and then ultimately have Marcus make the "right decision" to come clean and step away from the mayor's office that would have been his. Very "white hat" of him. I wonder if he'll end up working for Olivia at some point, since they've lost both Harrison and Abby on the team now? -- I like Susan Ross. I like that she won't vote for something, no matter how helpful it might appear on its outer shell, without reading it first. I like that she asks the difficult questions. I like that she says she'll vote against it without getting answers to those questions. I like that she won't be rushed but would rather work longer to do it right. -- When we first met Olivia's new boy toy, I wondered. And then when Rowan showed up at her door with boy toy in tow, I thought it confirmed. But then I second guessed myself, when Rowan apologized for knocking boy toy out and taping him up. It turns out, I knew before I knew I knew: boy toy is on Rowan's payroll. And he tricked Jake into showing up at an otherwise closed-for-the-night Pope and Associates only to ambush him and stab him repeatedly. Which, for me, begs three questions: Why don't they always suspect someone is going to do that and have some sort of "this is really me" secret code in place? Is no one safe on this show? And who on Shonda's team has an obsession with violent murder? -- I have to be honest. This has been my least favorite season of Scandal, *by* *far*. At this point, I'm just holding out hope that this will be like the airplane season of Grey's Anatomy, and a couple of seasons from now, this show will have regained all the awesomeness it once had, allowing us to look back at chuckle at that strange aberration of a season.

**(Mad Men, S7E9 New Business) I really liked Betty's hair in this episode. But the fact that she's taking psychology classes? That's rich. ::snort:: -- I am entirely unable to take Roger seriously with that thing on his face. -- Don's a little creepy with this waitress obsession. -- How did we get from the clean cut 60s to the lazy schlumpy 70s? -- Don [answering the door in the middle of the night, fully dressed in a suit]. Diana: Do you sleep like that? Don: I'm vain. -- Don: What's wrong? Diana: I lied to you. Don: Already? -- I wonder if Don is attracted to broken people because it's what he knows best? -- That elevator scene was fifty shades of uncomfortably awkward. -- There was a bunch of glass grapes on Don's table as decor. My Gram had those exact grapes. -- More comical: Roger's mustache or Pete's hair? -- More creepy: Harry coming on to Megan. Gross. -- I cannot believe Marie cleaned out Don's entire apartment. I cannot believe Megan's revisionist history about all the ways Don ruined her life. I cannot believe he wrote her a legit check for a million dollars. I cannot believe she couldn't even accept it graciously, much less warn him what her mother did to his apartment.

**(Grey's Anatomy, S11W20 One Flight Down) Meredith [opening monologue]: When true disaster strikes it comes out of nowhere. ... Oh, I've got a bad feeling about this... -- Of all the outrageous things that take place on this show, having it be extremely stressful for Mer to deal with wondering why she can't reach Derek while handling the casualties of a plane crash may be one of the most realistic. -- Those scenes with the MerDer pillow talk were so unbearably sweet. True love. Even him watching her sleep and her reaction to it. -- I feel like someone needs to slap Owen and Amelia. Mostly Amelia. -- The residents' conversations on the cots in the hallway! I love this. I love how familiar it feels. -- The Kate and Sam story was sweet. And Edwards' need for it to work. I especially liked when she put Owen and Amelia in their places. -- I would like to think that all the yelling in the ORs doesn't happen in real life. It stresses me out. -- Richard [after April calls him out on all the times he's told an embellished version of the plane crash story]: Because the minute you see all the things you have, you see all the things you have to lose. ... Yes. Yes yes yes. -- Mer is sitting on her couch, waiting for the clock to hit 5pm, so she can officially panic over not hearing from Derek. And somehow it's already pitch dark outside and there are crickets chirping. At 5pm?? -- Oh crap. Police lights flashing. This isn't going to be good...

**(Grey's Anatomy, S11E21 How to Save a Life) Derek: No one's gonna die, Winnie. Winnie: You aren't God so you don't know. ... Oh, foreshadowing. (Full disclosure: the outcome was spoiled for me. I think it may have actually been harder to watch this spoiled, because you wait in cringe-mode.) -- I am Alana. I am so her. The good girl who freaks out because she never does anything she shouldn't and can't process how to handle being at a scene go so horribly wrong. -- Derek: Every kiss before the right kiss doesn't count anyway. I've kissed a lot of women. But the first time I kissed my wife... I mean, she wasn't my wife then. She was just this...girl in a bar. But when we kissed, it was like...I gotta tell you. It was like I'd never kissed any other woman before. It was like the first kiss. The right kiss. ... ::swoon:: -- Who stops in the middle of the road to look for their phone??? Do people *do* this??? And I thought there was no reception up there? How is there suddenly reception?? -- Der doing his own narrating as he's failing in the hospital was devastating. -- Heartbreaking irony: when the man who says "it's a beautiful day to save lives" has no one to save his. -- That daydream of Der being ok in a hospital bed when Mer got to him was cruel, even having had the outcome spoiled for me. I wanted so badly for it to be true. -- Mer [looking at Derek's charts and addressing the doctors]: The call to not get a head CT was a bad call. -- That inept, arrogant doctor, explaining "the way it works to Mer" and her giving him the whole spiel because she already knows was sad. So sad. And such a perfect scene. She was absolutely profoundly brilliant through this whole thing. It was like I was living it alongside her. And that is why it was so awful. Not because one of my favorite couples is over, not because I'll miss his presence on this show, but because putting myself in her spot was too hard to imagine, knowing how it is to love someone with every fiber of your being. -- People are freaking out all over the internet, talking about how the show is over and ruined now. Here's the thing: It was horribly horribly sad,  especially knowing what its like to love someone so deeply. I hate that it happened, but that doesn't make it any less a spectacularly done episode. The great episodes make you feel something. The best ones make you feel everything.

**(The Big Bang Thoery, S8E22 The Graduation Transmission) Sheldon: It's all pomp and circumstance, until someone loses an eye. -- Penny: Do you think we'll have time to visit your mom while we're there? Leonard: Yes. We'll also have time to put my junk in a garlic press, but we won't be doing that either. -- Awww! I liked Penny in this episode. Instead of being needy or snarky with Leonard, she was sweet to him, setting up for him to still give his graduation speech via Skype. -- I about died laughing, when Howard finally called tech support for the drone and Raj's phone started phone ringing. -- Leonard [during his graduation speech]: While all the popular kids were off doing...I don't know what they were doing because I was never there.

**(The Middle, S6E21 Two of a Kind) Sue: The worst thing that could ever happen happened to me. I got detention. Axl: What'd you do? overdecorate your locker. -- Frankie's dad and uncle are named Tag and Dutch?! -- Sue: You sing a jingle? I love jingles!! -- Sue: They said 'cause school's ending soon they're just throwing everyone in there on a Saturday. That means I'm going to be in with the skateboarders, the girl with the black lipstick, people who wear t-shirts with offensive slogans. -- LOL: Sue took notes on Axl's detention survival tips. -- Mike: Didn't his wife die? Tag: Yeah, that's how bad she wanted to leave him. -- LOL: Sue in detention, referring to herself as "a bad a-s-s."

**(The Blacklist, S2E19 Leonard Caul) OMG, Red has his own personal emergency medical team on standby. (Of course he does.) -- Sheesh. How many guys have been hopelessly in love with Liz? -- Liz: What are you doing here? Tom: I *live* here. -- I don't get why Liz's surgeon friend had blood all over his surgical facemask. Was he pressing his face to Red's bullet wound?! -- Mr Kaplan [pulling out a suitcase of cash when Dr Liz's Friend wants to get paid for his services]: Mr Reddington insists on being prepared for all contingencies. Shall we continue? -- Leonard Caul [about the code to access the Fulcrum]: I didn't get it. I wrote it. -- There is so much loyalty, so much devotion to Red from Dembe and Mr Kaplan. -- What is this important mission for Mr Kaplan that would convince her to actually leave Red's side when he is in imminent danger? -- Liz wants to rail against all these people in her life, imploring, demanding, to the point of ultimatum, that they just all start telling her the truth...and then on a whim, derides Red with total righteous indignation that couldn't he just lie to her for once to spare her feelings. Like they are just supposed to know the one time she would have been ok with a lie? -- I forget that when Red gives a name from the Blacklist, he always has a reason, something to gain from it. The one crazy cult on the compound procured the case from the car. The other crazy end-the-world cult gave him the key from the bottle. And now we see how it all fits. It's always just a matter of time. -- About that flat Dembe sent Liz to. All those Russian items om display, that photo of Liz presumably on her mother's lap, but the woman's face is obscured by sun rays. Why is her identity being kept so secret? Is it someone Liz knows even now, someone we might recognize? Who was Red before he was Red? Could he have been a US spy in Russia? Could Liz's mother be Russian? Could Red have been the Tom to Liz's mother? Did he think Liz was maybe his? Did her mother lead him to believe that? Why was Dembe so adamant that Red can't know Liz was there? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS.

**(Modern Family, S6E20 Knock 'em Down) Jay: Not this one. Joe tucks her in. Gloria: How would you know? You go to bed right after you yell at the news. -- Jay (about pretending to be gay to help Cam's all-gay bowling league win a tournament]: Fine. I'll do it. I don't like that guy. But what happens if someone I know comes in here and thinks I'm living a secret life? Cam: Jay, trust me, if someone you know comes in here tonight. *they're* living a secret life. -- Jay: So you tricked me into coming here. You made me gay. Now I have a boyfriend? All these lies, just to win a trophy? Cam: Yes. Jay: I respect that. -- Claire and Phil's dinner with the neighbors being all proper was hilarious. -- Claire: Ronnie, we live in civilized society. We're not those kind of people, ya know? Ronnie: Says the lady who, uh, paired my Cabernet with fish. -- Phil: Hey, Buddy. Amber: Oh don't call a cop "buddy." They hate that. Phil: No, that's his name. I sold him a condo. ... And I thought the scene in the restaurant was funny with the waiter named Guy. -- Alex: It's unbelievable. Mom and Dad are sitting outside with the neighbors they used to hate, yukking it up like they're all best friends. And why? Luke: Because there's wine?


Sunday, April 19, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 15

Checking in for the week of April 12 through April 18.

Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (Joanne Fluke) - I would have had this one finished, if I hadn't accidentally forgotten it on my desk at work one night.

I had some chili leftover in the freezer, which made for a hearty and simple dinner. We made some sausage burgers which I love with roasted peppers and a slice of provolone. T did up some kabobs (marinated chicken, some baby potatoes, mini sweet peppers, some onion, and some grape tomatoes) and we served that over some wild rice. And we had pork chops (grilled -- T takes his bone-in, I prefer boneless) with some carrots and some coleslaw.

Finally got a good stack of magazines out in the recycling. Baseball season on top of keeping nearly current with tv shows is cramping my progress. Summer awaits though.

Vanilla Cupcake (YC) - I love me a good vanilla scent.
Fresh Mint (YC) - This one is very light, more green than minty, sort of like smelling a mint plant.
Vanilla Lavender (YC) - Soft and soothing, heavier on the vanilla, but definitely still some lavender.
Coastal Waters (YC) - Fresh and clean.
Clean Cotton (YC) - Dryer sheets!

Soup-salad-and-breadsticks lunch date. The pasta fagioli is my favorite.

Salted caramel mountain in my ice cream.

They look like snow leopard spots.

This series of books I read has the best covers.

You know you've been playing too much Two Dots when you notice this glass near the copy machine at work and start mentally rearranging them while you wait for the copier to warm up.

It had been way too long since my last milkshake. Mmmmocha.

Looks like a giant pineapple!

This lil guy hangs out on the window ledge outside the bathroom in the evenings.


Saturday, April 18, 2015

This Week on My TV: April 18, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Chicago Fire, S3E19 I Am the Apocalypse) Blah, another Chicago Med promo. Between the crossovers and the promotion of spinoffs, this show has really started to lose its appeal for me.

**(Elementary, S3E19 One Watson, One Holmes) The screen name of the Every One guy who sought out Sherlock was seriously Sucking Chest Wound?? I was sure I was hearing it incorrectly but... -- Wait. At the opening of the episode, Sherlock was practicing how to fake death?! Of course he was. ::shakes head and laughs:: -- I love that Joan found Watson downstairs "figuring out which music Clyde likes." -- Sherlock [to Joan}: Your friendships continue to present a nuisance. -- Sucking Chest Wound: We know. Detective Bell: You can say 'having sex'. We're both adults. -- I loved, *loved*, Sherlock's speech to Joan about how their relationship relied upon there being "one Holmes, one Watson." It showed that not only did he see what their relationship is and how it works, but he is protecting it! -- Joan [waking up to find Sherlock nest to her]: What are you doing? Sherlock: Tapping "wake up Watson" in Morse code.

**(Grey's Anatomy, S11E19 Crazy Love) That MerDer opening, with the flashbacks and all the love was perfection. I love seeing them happy. -- Catherine vs Richard: The passive-aggressive third person argument they had via the patient whose wife cut off his [ahem] (sorry, I don't want certain searches, ya know?) was *hilarious*. -- I love that Alex is still very Alex but has also grown enough that he's able to be a good friend to Maggie about her dating situation. -- Oh, Amelia and Owen. Why must everything be so complicated? -- Catherine: Sometimes it takes crazy to love crazy. -- April has become one of my favorite characters. I love that she isn't afraid to back down when Richard tells he not to call Catherine because she knows it's what is best for her patient. And I love that when he confronts her about it, she not only stands her ground with regard to how she chose to treat her patient, but added in a defiant "and she's my mother in law, I'll call her any time I want to!" Richard declaring her the victor slayed me. -- What the heck was that outburst Amelia had on Mer, that Mer doesn't know her at all and should mind her own business. Sheesh. -- Meredith [monologue]: The thing about love is when it's good, it's so very good. And when it's bad, it hurts so much. And if you can't find a way to balance all of those ups and downs, it will make you crazy. -- So...where *is* Derek?? Also, can't we just let them be happy?

**(2 Broke Girls, S4E17 And the High Hookup) That was...not a good Irish accent on whoever this new annoying character is. -- Best part of this whole episode...actually the only good part of this whole episode. ... Sophie [walking into the diner]: I just got hit by a cab and boy am I in the mood for crab legs. ... WHAT?! -- How is this show still on the air. And not just on the air but renewed, when shows like Marry Me and About a Boy and A to Z are all but confirmed cancelled? I. Don't. Get it.

**(Mad Men, S7E8 Severance) Don was enjoying those fur coat auditions *way* too much. I didn't even realize there were more people in the room until the end of the opening scene, when the camera zoomed out! -- What is with Roger's mustache?! OMG LOL. -- Fashion in the 70s was *awful*. There is just no way around it. The colors and the strange cuts. -- L'eggs pantyhose!! -- ::snort:: The customer called Harry 'Mr Potatohead'. -- Peggy: You'll be second which is very far from first. ... Gosh, if that doesn't hang as heavily over Peggy, herself, as over Topaz pantyhose. -- Why does Ken keep wearing that eye patch? Weren't glass eyes an option back then?! -- I was really confused by the scene with Rachel. I went back and forth quite a bit about whether or not that was a dream. (Until we learned that Rachel had died, obviously.) -- Peggy: Should we go to lunch? Joan: I want to burn this place down. ... Ok then! Also, the conversation that ensued really showed the differences between Joan and Peggy. Joan was offended that the Topaz douches weren't such slimy jerks to them, and Peggy would just like someone, *anyone*, to notice her. -- What is the deal with Don and Diane the waitress? He is such a man whore. But I don't understand her response to the whole thing. Her whole demeanor just -- Ohhhh...Peggy's date. She needs a good guy. Why is she second guessing this now? -- Peggy: You don't seem like a lawyer. Stevie: I just left a job in  Boston because they felt the same way. -- Oh ho ho. Ken Cosgrove with the perfect vengeance on Sterling for firing him because Ferg refuses to work with him: now Ken's the client representing Dow and he has the upper hand. I hope he makes them *dance*.

**(Madam Secretary, S1E20 The Necessary Art) This was my least favorite episode of the entire season, which was bound to happen at some point, but it took twenty episodes to get there. And it wasn't even that bad an episode. This show just set the bar so high for itself that I expected better than what this episode gave. I wasn't invested enough in Stevie to really care about her relationship with her boss and her ties to the junkie First Son lack...something. And the whole standoff with Russia and the way the story of the submarine was told felt as though parts of the story had been edited out. But I love that she really seems to have patched up her relationship with Elizabeth. Ezra was an absolute gem; I'm sorry we're just meeting him on his way out the door to retirement, because I would have enjoyed some additional time with his character (Philip Baker Hall was *perfect* in his role). And Henry in his furry hat, OMG, comic relief. -- Where was Mike B? I missed Mike B. I would have thoroughly relished some snark from him in regard to Matt's doomsday laments.

**(The Good Wife, S6E19 Winning Ugly) Marissa is not dumb. She makes some astute observations and never misses a subtle remark. I like her. -- I feel bad for Alicia. She wanted this State's Attorney position for all the right reasons and this has all just gotten so ugly. If this is how it really is to be in politics, it's no wonder we get so few decent people in office and that they don't seem to stay long when we do. -- I cannot believe that waitress had the audacity to say "you don't get to decide when it's my business" right to Alicia's face about Alicia's own personal life! And what's worse, that's how we are. As soon as someone is in the spotlight, we expect we have a right to their personal lives. It's such a gross violation of privacy. -- When Diane was stalking to Finn's office (Finn!), after finding out she used Kalinda's faked meta data, I felt like they should have had Wicked Witch of the West music as her soundtrack. I want to feel bad for Diane but...she went onto Kalinda's computer without telling Kalinda. If she'd said so, Kalinda would have been able to stop her and Diane wouldn't be in the position of potentially being disbarred and sent to prison. -- So now Cary is going to give the State Bishop, after he fought so hard against it, purely to protect Diane and Kalinda? This has to be the means by which Kalinda is written off the show, right? Something to do with this arc? -- Have mercy, there was just so much corruption behind getting Alicia to withdraw from her elected post. So many layers, so many people she thought were on her side who worked against her. I feel awful for her. But the humdinger question is: did Peter know they were going to force her out?? And I almost feel badly about being hopeful and excited, buy will we get more Frank Prady as a result?

**(Mike and Molly, S5E17 Mudlick or Bust) Peggy: Read your contract. I got that months ago. Molly: Seriously? I gotta stop using Vince as a lawyer. ... You think??? -- Meh, the betting parts were mediocre at best.-- The best part of Peggy's story: the tree people vs the crick people.

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E18 Heart of Gold) Emma: I am only the savior because you altered the entire state of my being at the expense of someone else's *soul*. ... Well, when you put it *that* way, Emma. -- The author really is the perfect sneaky shifty character. -- Question: You lose your magic if your hands are tied? Because I don't remember that being the case in the past.-- I knew we weren't guaranteed to be finished with Zelena, based on the way we last saw her not really die, but I didn't expect her to be disguised as Marian! -- Gold: If it's within your grasp, what it is and who it's with, then you should run for it, grasp it, and never let it go.

**(Person of Interest, S4E19 Search and Destroy) Mr Reese: Only the paranoid survive, right, Finch? Mr Finch: It's not paranoia if they're really watching you. -- Does Root just always carry a gas mask around with her? -- Does Zoe not look crazy to anyone else in that boardroom, having a conversation with Mr Reese that looks like she's talking to herself?? -- I have to admit, this really got me thinking how terrifying it would be to be set up so thoroughly, knowing you were innocent and being unable to prove it. -- Root: Sorry, John. Places to be, people to kill. -- What was up with the egg in the case? Was there some reason for all that? Root stealing it, but not being able to open the case, the Machine finally giving her the code, then instructing Root to smash it? -- Are we ever going to see or hear about Shaw again?

**(The Middle, S6E20 Food Courting) Who knew the food court was such a bloodsport? All that luring and sneaking to get employees to move their employment. But did Sue just get excited about a nickel-an-hour raise? LOL -- Also LOL: Mike pulling out his "dad voice." -- When being told to write an essay about why it's important to respect his mother, after being a mouthy teen with an attitude, only Brick would respond with "what font?" -- Did Axl seriously say his birthday plans included a pool party in the back of a truck? -- That last scene where Mike and Axl were having a beer together at the bar to celebrate Axl's 21st birthday was exactly perfect. Slightly cheesy and awkward when they attempt conversation, but just right when they slip back into companionable silence.

**(The Big Bang Theory, S8E21 The Communication Deterioration) Raj: Well, they're looking to include a message from earth in case one of them is encountered by alien life. Leonard: Hmmm. When I encountered alien life, I discovered the key thing was not to sit in its spot. Sheldon: All right. You can't breathe our air without an inhaler, he's allergic to earth nuts, but I'm the alien. -- Raj: Exactly what I expected: two people forcing their ideas on me and only one gentleman who could be bothered to ask me what my thoughts were. You two are out. Congratulations, Leonard, you're on the team. Leonard [gloating at Sheldon and Howard]: My mommy raised a gentleman. -- Leonard: Just this morning, Sheldon wouldn't let me put almond milk on my GrapeNuts because he said it was a theoretical nut conflict. -- LOL: Raj and Leonard trying to figure out how to be in charge of a project. after dismissing Sheldon and Howard. My indecisive Libra nature identifies. And then the idea they came up with was the idea the other two had originally given. -- Hilarity: Penny goes to Sheldon for career advice and does a Leonard impression. Sheldon's cackle and "aww, it's just like he's here" was perfect. -- Bernadette [to Howard]: Don't take this the wrong way, but how many of those little booze balls have you had? -- Yay for Penny finally giving up on acting! They found a good way to give closure to that part of her character.

**(Mom, S2E20 Sick Popes and a Red Ferrari) I'm kind of over Bonnie's relapse. They're trying too hard to make heavy be funny and it's not working for me.

**(Last Man Standing, S4E22 Daddy Dearest) They picked just the right annoying actor to play Ryan's father. -- Mike [about Ryan]: He hurt his foot. I hope it's not the one he puts in his mouth. -- What a strange way to end the season. Maybe Ryan's dad is terminally ill? We're a week away from the wedding, which would typically be a season finale sort of thing, but we don't get an actual wedding? (Not that I'm complaining. This means there's still a chance it might not happen.) (A girl can hope.) Also, Kristin says "if they wait any longer to be married, she will be so old." She was 17 when she had Boyd, who is, what? Six or seven now? Which makes her 24 at most. I didn't get married until I was nearly, what's your point Kristin? Hmmm?


Sunday, April 12, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 14

Checking in for the week of April 5 through April 11.

Goodnight Nobody (Jennifer Weiner) - This book had more twists and surprises than I gave it credit for being able to pull off when I first cracked the cover. I liked the main character, Kate. There were parts of her with which I really identified (other qualities, not so much). The story lagged a bit from time to time, and there were some scenes that were probably meant to flesh out the characters so more, but they felt unnecessary to me. It was an easy read, though, and the story was satisfying...except for one. nagging. unanswered. question. That lack of resolution made the book a 3-star rating instead of a 4-star. I don't handle dangling threads well.
Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (Joanne Fluke) - Moving right along to the next book on my list, since I am two books behind schedule on my Goodreads 2015 Reading Challenge goal. This is the fourth book in this series and they are usually an easy read.

Easter dinner was delicious. T roasted a turkey breast, and we had deviled eggs, rolls, buttery garlic green beans, and mashed sweet potatoes with citrus -- bright colors, tons of flavor. There was keilbasa, sauerkraut, and pierogies one night. And to use up the rest of the Easter turkey, I did my turkey pot pie soup. Our easy meal was grilled chicken wraps; I put shredded lettuce, diced tomato, and honey mustard on mine and it's just so good.

It's been getting increasingly warm here, to which my productivity has a directly associated decline. I just want to be inside where it's cool and to generate as little additional heat as possible. I did manage to de-clutter one drawer this week. I didn't even manage to cross anything off my "fun list." I really ought to tackle the good ol' stack of magazines, if I'm going to be hibernating again, and I should probably get back to my morning "living room workouts" now that it's far too warm for our after-work walks. Otherwise, I will become a giant slug.

Red Velvet Cupcake (BBW) - Almost...done...
Beach Wood (YC) - This is such a strange scent to try to describe. It's a little fresh and a little floral. I only like it in small doses.
Meadow Showers (YC) - Oh how I love this scent. It's like a spring morning with your windows wide open to the fresh new day. Which, of course, I cannot have in reality, because it is now summer by Florida's standards. This helps.

Easter...moonlight service, anyone?

A technical mess of a photo, but the dawn's early light was breathtaking and the light had turned green and I had to snap and go.

The sun came up just as our Easter Sunrise Service concluded. "Bursting forth in glorious day!"

Happiest flowers ever.

Easter dinner.

These clouds just look, to my eye, like they're flying by.

Sweet music to my ears. Red Sox Opening Day!

Dewy dill.

Eety beety starfish (and a lurking shrimp).

Cloud touchdown! (Do you see it?)


"Sweet days of summer, the jasmine's in bloom."

I'm not particularly drawn to roses, as a rule, but these were so interesting and bright. I had to pause on my way into the library to admire.

Building stuff. Always building stuff.

Real life: every once in a while, we're lovin' it.


Saturday, April 11, 2015

This Week on My TV: April 11, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Scandal, S4E18 Honor Thy Father) This was a *much* better episode. -- I'm trying to figure out the purpose for giving Mellie a deep South half-sister. Was it to give Mellie backstory? To flesh out Mellie's character? (Because I thought we already learned that Mellie's cold shrewishness is a result of Big Jerry.) Or just because they couldn't figure out another way to keep Mellie's looming Presidential campaign on our minds? -- I'm glad they gave Olivia another case. This show needs a "case of the week" to be the show I liked at the beginning. -- Wouldn't waiting to turn over cell phones until you're in the safe house be a total security risk? Like B613 couldn't have been using the signals to track them there? -- I'm pleased that Abby and Olivia are back to having "girlfriend chats" on the phone again. -- Huck: Do you want to know what I would have done if that was my kid? Everyone: NO! -- I loved Fitz's obvious amusement during his conversation with Mellie about their role reversal. -- One thing I suspected correctly: I knew Jake hadn't gone "B613 mad dog" and killed all those B613 witnesses. Two twists I never saw coming: That Holly was B613 and gunning for David as a result of his attempt to take down Command. And Olivia's new lover, Russell (or whatever his real name is), was planted by Rowan.

**(Grey's Anatomy, S11E18 When I Grow Up) Mer: I have everything I've ever wanted. ... This reminded me of one of my favorite Charlotte scenes from the first Sex and the City movie.-- Another thumbs-up throwback: residents chattering about dating between cases. -- Jackson: The Plastics Posse (snort) and reminiscing about Sloan (sniffle) and that beard (meh). -- More awkward question from the school field trip group: "what's a womb" or "is that officer going to die"? -- Amelia needs to let go of this whole "Amelia vs Derek" thing she insists is more of a thing that it really is. -- The words of the mother who lost both of her police officer sons "I woke up a happy mother of two this morning, so proud..." was somehow both a mirror and contrast of Mer's earlier conversation with Maggie about her own family. -- Mer: If i'm that happy does that have to mean someone else is that unhappy? ... Oof, my heart. Mer still says things that I identify with so much. -- Bailey and the kid and the donated liver felt very similar to a much earlier episode of Grey's but I don't know which. -- Amelia: I think I'm falling in love with Owen Hunt and I'm really afraid that it's going to destroy me. Derek: Wouldn't be love if it didn't.

**(Elementary, S3E18 The View From Olympus) Sherlock: Agatha is not in love with me. Joan: Oh. Then what's the problem? Sherlock: She's asked for a donation. Joan: To an environmental group? Sherlock: To her uterus. -- Things you hear only from Sherlock Holmes: "The bearskin run is gone. It's now safe to move about the brownstone." -- Once again, I found the case, itself, rather uninspired and unmemorable, but the development of Sherlock and Joan continues to intrigue me. Also, I wonder why Sherlock's father insists on attemots at tricking and manipulating Sherlock into procreating, but not his brother?

**(The Good Wife, S6E18 Loser Edit) I'm a bit bewildered why someone would be doing the Alicia piece now that the election is over.-- The Diane/RD case was very thought provoking. The lines are shifting and easily arguable for *both* sides. -- I like that Finn (Finn!) is giving Kalinda legal advice on the faked meta data from Cary's trial. -- The scene with Peter and Alicia in her kitchen, being civil, friendly even, was so real and believable. -- Waaaaait a second. There is concern over ballot tampering being responsible for Alicia's win over Frank Prady. Didn't we already do this with Peter election?

**(Madam Secretary, S1E19 Spartan Figures) Elizabeth: If men knew how sexy they look fixing stuff, they'd never stop. -- LOL: Henry's grin after teasing Blake about being a "city mouse" was positively impish. -- Matt: Oh there we go. Nadine: I beg your pardon. Matt: Oh...I didn't realize I said that out loud. -- I have no idea how Elizabeth didn't punch Russell for stealing her fries right off her desk. Joey Tribbiani never woud have stood for that. -- I'm not sure how I feel about this job offer Henry's been given. -- The story line with Stevie and the junkie First Son was pretty meh. It seemed to served very little purpose. -- Poor Blake, getting arrested because he didn't have enough quarters for the pay bathroom (???). -- Conrad sounds *way* too much like 'comrade'. -- Elizabeth: Blake was on a fact finding mission for me last night. although the public urination was his idea. Blake: Nature calls the same in any language. Matt: Wait, so you were talking to her the whole time? Blake: Except for the part where I was in lockup with a skinhead and a mime.

**(Better Call Saul, S1E10 Marco) Jimmy's bingo meltdown was both bizarre and hilarious. -- Apparently Chuck's betrayal kicked off a weeklong spiral for Jimmy, which sent him back to his scamming roots. -- Like everything else in this show, Marco's death was both abrupt and yet, somehow, not surprising. T even called it before it happened. But did he really suffer a heart attack? Or did something else cause his demise? I kept getting the impression he was ill. -- So, we're to assume that, by leaving the meeting, Jimmy is officially done trying to do the right thing? -- They were certainly consistent by making the ending of the season finale as abrupt as every other episode's close.

**(Parenthood, S6E3 The Waiting Room) I really love the relationship between Amber and Zeek. Over the course of this show, it's evolved into one of my favorites. And Amber has grown so much since we first met her, not freaking out at Zeek's slip in front of everyone about the baby, but laughing instead. -- I find it difficult to get interested, at all, in Ruby's story. -- Tears: Zeek telling Camille he was scared before his surgery, then Camille holding it together until she was alone. It was all so very raw and realistic and just...oof. -- Despite his thoughtful hospital waiting room care package, I am not a fan of Julia's new man. Maybe because he kept talking about how tough Zeek is when he doesn't even know him. It's a totally different line coming out of Joel's mouth. -- Ugh. This whole Amber-Ryan-baby thing is hard and awkward and just meh. I don't want to see Amber go back to that but it was soul crushing to have to tell Ryan that wasn't why she told him when he was so excited about it.

**(The Middle, S6E19 Siblings and Sombreros) I cannot decide which part was more hilarious: Brad kicking away the ladder while he and Sue are perched on that giant cow or their rendition of "If I Only Had a Brain" in an effort to shoo away the crow that was blocking the camera set up to take their picture on said giant cow. -- I wholly approve of the way they are maturing Axl's character in a completely believable way. He may not show the world that he can be nice to Sue, but when it's just the two of them, there have been more and more moments when he's really being a nice guy.

**(The Big Bang Theory, S8E20 The Fortification Implementation) Raj [about Howard's dad]: What if he's in prison? What if he's a spy? What if he's in a Beatles cover band? -- I don't know if it was just Wheaton's beard or what, but he looks like he's put on a ton of weight in his face. -- ::snort:: Amy: According to the codicil of the relationship agreement which *you* insisted upon, we're not allowed to pout or be moody on date night. Sheldon: You know I just put that in because of uterus stuff. -- Oh, c'mon, Amy. The Sheldon face thing was really funny. -- I'm not sure how I feel about this thing with Howard's (half) brother. Let's see where it goes.

**(Law and Order:SVU, S16E19 Granting Immunity) Well, after I saw the previews, I have to admit I was curious how they were going to manipulate the measles/immunization angle into being related to SVU. That way. -- What is with all of Amaro's kids relocating to California?? -- You would think there wouldn't have been so much resistance from these parents about investigating and the collection of all devices when it meant protecting their kids from being put onto...distasteful websites. Sheesh. They were more concerned about privacy and finding ways to lie about immunizations on school records in the name of "protecting their kids," but I would think this would be pretty high on the list of things from which I'd want to protect any child!

**(Mom, S2E19 Mashed Potatoes and a Little Nitrous) I found it amusing that Bonnie and Christy sent Roscoe to "the other room" so he wouldn't hear their conversation, when the other room is connected to the kitchen by an open doorway and a window pass-through. -- Why are they worried about finding cute guys for Bonnie? Did they not see what Alvin looked like?? -- For a sitcom, this show doesn't shy away from the hard topics. Like Bonnie's relapse into substance abuse and Christy's tough love reaction.

**(Last Man Standing, S4E21 Vanessa Fixes Up Eve) I've said it before and I'll say it again: the episodes with the Larabees are always my favorites. -- Mike: I'm not racist. I hate everybody equally. -- Mike [about the Eve-Logan-Brandon "love triangle"]: You know what this situation reminds me of? Romeo and Juliet...boring and I don't care. -- Eve: I'm heading out to the range. Mike: Yeah, well, say hello to the deer and the antelope. -- Mike [to Eve]: I have just as much love for Mandy and the other one. ... HAAAAA. Mike clearly feels the same way about Kristin as I do.

**(Blue Bloods, S5E20 Payback) I got a wee bit concerned with that politician whipped out his "special card" from Frank. I shouldn't have doubted that Frank's morals were not compromised and there would be no favors. -- Did Jamie actually call for a bus without asking for it forthwith? I don't understand. -- I found it almost as amusing when Danny threw the tire iron to stop the guy from running as I do when he Danny Reagan's someone upside the head (which I haven't seen nearly enough of lately). -- I'm pretty sure saying "some cop" to the Commissioner is not the way to win over or convince Frank Reagan of *anything*. Also, saying a favor is in the best interest of "the needs of the mayor" is not a threat that will elicit results. In fact, quite the opposite, as far as Frank and Mayor Poole go.


Sunday, April 5, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 13

Checking in for the week of March 29 through April 4.

A Cookbook Conspiracy (Kate Carlisle) - This was a fun, easy read. As always, from this series, a page-turner. I managed to guess whodunnit correctly, but I like that they never reveal the motive til the very end. Looking forward to the next installment!
Goodnight Nobody (Jennifer Weiner) - I'm not quite halfway through this one. I wasn't sure what I expected, but it isn't half bad. Sort of cozy-mystery-meets-chick-lit. Total brain candy, but engaging nonetheless.

Holy Week is a bit of a logistical challenge for dinnertime, since I have church on both Thursday and Friday evenings at 7pm. Add in rush hour traffic and the fact that these services tend to have a higher turnout, and I need to be out the door around 6:25. And there are only so many sandwiches we can eat, know what I mean? This week's menu brought: Roasted marinated chicken breasts, boiled potatoes (with a little butter, salt, and fresh parsley), and cucumber salad. T's delicious clam chowder. Spaghetti and meatballs (from the freezer!). And some tilapia (done on the grill in a foil packet) with grilled yellow squash, and some wild rice.

Holy Week is busy. I accomplished things like getting to the special services, picking up some last minute goodies for T's Easter basket, and switching up my usual Sunday grocery shopping to Saturday, since none of the stores I shop at are open on Easter.

Red Velvet Cupcake (BBW) - This is the candle that never ends...
Blueberry Scone (YC) - One of my favorite scents of all time, never mind spring. It's blueberry and vanilla and a hint of lemon. It makes me want to eat scones or muffins.
Midnight Jasmine (YC) - Maybe the closest candle scent to orange blossoms.
Clean Cotton (YC) - Smells like fresh laundry. Gosh, I love my airy scents for this season!

Coming to you know by the truckload. Consider yourselves warned.

New month, new calendar art. I've only ever seen Denver from the airport.

Maundy Thursday. The altar has been stripped. Christ has been arrested. We leave in utter silence to resume Holy Week worship tomorrow.

Maybe seems strange to hear, but this is my favorite service of the church year. (I got there pretty early to feel comfortable taking this photo though. It wasn't during the actual service.)

Good morning, good morning to you.

Wee pineapples!

Saturday virtual Dunkin date with a friend back in Connecticut. We do this every so often, since we can't actually go together. We speak the same language: pass the donuts.

Friends who care send See's.

No, *you* decide how many M&Ms you're going to eat by removing all of one color.


Saturday, April 4, 2015

This Week on My TV: April 4, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Madam Secretary, S1E17 Face the Nation) Elizabeth is obviously and understandably shaken up by what happened during the attempted coup in Iran. I appreciate that they don't make her "super human." -- I liked the body guard that Henry interviewed for Jason. I loved that they made him very tall. I have no idea *why* I love it though. -- Ooo! I wonder if Mike B is going to be a regular character! I hope so. I like Kevin Rahm. -- Mike B: Pompous tools rule the world. Might as well get on their good side. -- Henry [about Elizabeth's panic attack]: Navy SEALS gets these you know. You tougher than a Navy SEAL? Elizabeth: Well, maybe a little runty one... -- I really enjoy the humanity they give Elizabeth. I like that she shows fear and weakness. I like that she struggles with separating the job from her family life. I like that she feels the weight of her choices, even when there are consequences for doing the right thing. But I never would have expected it from Russell, when he showed up and compassionately bared his personal vulnerabilities and handed her the card of a discreet psychiatrist. -- I love when Henry gets all badass in protection of Elizabeth. -- Mike B: "Exhausted" is Washington code for "complete mental freakout," you twelve year olds. -- Blake: To that rarest of Washington feats: actually doing something.

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E15 Enter the Dragon) While I am really liking Regina's nicer side, it's fun to see her villainous side again, even if it's just an act. Also, I wish I could pull of a black leather skirt like that. -- I always find it a little weird when Emma calls Mary Margaret and David "Mom and Dad." -- I am not quite sure I see how that "test" Maleficent, Cruella, and Ursula gave Regina was proof Regina has "gone hero," so much as it was self preservation. I mean, the car was parked on train tracks with a train bearing down on them. -- Young Regina was so hesitant and, despite her anger toward Snow, almost sweet. But was Maleficent a strung out junkie on some kind of magic-based drug? -- Oh, Disney. Continuity fail. Briar Rose was not Aurora's mother. Aurora was renamed Briar Rose by her three fairy godmothers in an attempt to protect her. -- That was a weird scene when Maleficent was swallowing the fire in Fairy Tale Land Past. -- I could have sworn that wasn't the same Aurora as before, but IMDB says it was. Either way, I really liked her dress in this episode. -- Ack! Rumplestiltskin impersonating Hook to trick Belle into handing over the dagger! -- August! August is back! (Probably not good news for him, but I always liked him.)

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E16 Poor Unfortunate Soul) Poseidon: Pout all you want, but I expect you home by high tide. -- Hook: Careful, mate. It's unwise to insult the size of a pirate's ship. -- Wonderland reference! -- I like that August is back. I was bummed when he was changed back into a boy. I wonder how long we have him as August? -- Emma is so thick headed when it comes to Hook/romance. -- Nice twist at the end with the book page of door *being* the actual door and the author being trapped inside.

**(Reign, S2E17 Tempting Fate) Kenna, you fool. How can you just throw Bash away because you want someone who can provide you with more prestige? He may be one of the few decent and loyal men in court. -- Mary's sneaking around with Conde and being sloppy so now Catherine has suspicions. C'mon, Mary. You know Catherine's conniving is going to make her more keen to the signs. Why aren't they using the network of secret passage ways?! -- It is really difficult to keep track of who the various spies and lords are. They all look very similar and their roles are just small enough that I keep forgetting. -- Holy crap! Bash! (I'm a little concerned where they are taking Bash's being run through by a sword. He was bleeding out of his mouth and now it looks like  "Sister" Delphine is hinting at a supernatural angle, which, meh.) -- Narcisse was the one who intercepted Mary's treasonous letter, because of course he is, but whoa with the big play, going for Catherine!!

**(Grey's Anatomy, S11E17 With or Without You) Owen's mother and John...hmmm. I think, weird as it would feel, as long as my mother was happy and John was treating her well, who cares about the age difference? I'm relieved Owen chilled out at the end, when he realized John wasn't just some kind of gold digger, playing on his mother's emotions for personal gain. -- I was totally prepared to be royally ticked off at Derek. -- Well played with the Mer-Der flashbacks. I loved seeing "flip books" of all those classic scenes. -- Totally gross, but I loved that they did the "critter up the nose" case. Vintage Grey's to have some comic relief. -- I *loved* the ending. All of it. -- Meredith [closing monologue]: When we go without certain things for long enough, it's easy to forget just how much we need them. We forget what we had once. We forget what it's like to live with a thing, not that we need, but that we want. That's why it's so important for us to remind ourselves, for us to remember. Just because we *can* live without something, it doesn't mean we have to. -- I wanted to cheer! ... Derek [after Renee kissed him]: I love my wife. I'm married. I don't want anything other than what I have with her. I have to go. Right now, I have to go. -- Derek: I am calling Post-It. Zola and Bailey and tumors on the walls and ferry boat scrub caps. I thought DC was everything and I was wrong. You.'re everything. I love you and I'm not going to stop loving you. Meredith, I can't live without you. I don't want to live without you and I'm gonna do everything in my power to prove it. Meredith: I *can* live without you...but I don't want to. I don't ever want to. ... Heart-splosion!

**(Scandal, S4E17 Put a Ring on It) I liked the backstory-via-flashbacks on Cy's previous weddings/marriages. I thought the Olivia-Fitz flashback scene was sweet; I've missed Fitz when he didn't act like a petulant child. I found it a refreshing change of pace to see Cyrus treating Michael with tenderness, honesty, and compassion, because these are qualities we almost never see from him. And I finding Sally's lunacy to be entertaining. Anyway, this episode didn't make me angry, which is a plus. It wasn't a *great* episode, by any stretch, but it was tolerable. It felt sort of like being in that awkward transition phase after you've fought with someone, before you've made up and you're not angry anymore, but things are still a bit tense and coolly polite. -- Olivia: It's impossible to find time to do something you don't want to do. Funny how that works.

**(The Good Wife, S6E17 Undisclosed Recipients) I wonder if Alicia will keep Marissa in her employ, now that the election is over. Because, if so, then each of the Florricks has a Gold, and I find that humorous. -- (Obligatory) Finn! -- I wonder which will happen first: One of the Florricks giving Eli a stroke or Alicia full-body shuddering after having to be in the room as Guy Redmayne. -- OMG, the emails being revealed and the chaotic aftermath. That certainly gives one...pause.

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E17 Best Laid Plans) Hook calling August "wooden boy man" because he's feeling jealous of Emma. Haaa! -- Mary Margaret: Heroes do what's right, not what's easy. ... That is so true. And now we see that the very thing Snow and Charming tried to prevent, a dark heart for their daughter, led to lies that caused Emma's heart to darken. -- Mr Gold: Pain fades...unless you feed it. -- Quite possibly one of the best speeches in the history of this show. ... August: There have been many authors throughout time. It's a job, not a person, and the one trapped in here is just the last tasked with the great responsibility to witness the greatest stories of all time and record them for posterity. The job has gone back eons: From the man who watched shadows dance across cave walls and developed an entire philosophy, to playwrights who tell tales of poetry, to a man named Walt. Many have had this sacred job. Great women and men who took on the responsibility with the gravity it deserved. -- So, now we know what Snow and Charming did to Maleficent's baby, but HOLY COW, what a twist!! Her baby was young Emma's best friend!! And just when I was reeling from that, the meddling author, who was banished to entrapment in the book for getting too involved and manipulating the stories, is released and pops out and is the peddler that directed Snow and Charming to the Apprentice's cabin! What the what?? ::applauds::

**(Better Call Saul, S1E9 Pimento) Two things: I cannot *believe* Chuck sold Jimmy out to the law firm with the Sandpiper class action suit, after everything Jimmy has done to support Chuck. That was beyond low. And Mike and the pimento sandwich and not packing a gun. OMG, I laughed *so* hard!

**(2 Broke Girls, S4E16 And the Zero Tolerance) That crazy pastry bar woman named "Joedth. The D-T-H is silent." OMG. -- I wonder how long this new gig will last for Max and Caroline? Seems all their other forays and ventures last a few weeks and then collapse.

**(Mike and Molly, S5E16 Cocktails and Calamine) I hear you on the "real crab, fake people, like it better the other way around" thing, Peggy, but I like real crab. -- Molly was awful to Mike. I cannot imagine treating my husband that way. -- I'm going to have to keep an eye on T to make sure he isn't playing the booger trick on me to get me to stop talking. -- Mike: I am big. I am oafy. I like mini hamburgers. And I like talking about them even more.

**(The Middle, S6E18 Operation Infiltration) I cannot even articulate how much I loved Sue getting the best revenge *ever* on everything Axl has ever done to torment her. Dancing at the party and getting the "infinity snuggle blanket" photo. And the fact that it was a total April Fools' prank on Axl by Devin was pure gold. -- Sue [to Axl]: I'm not a bro, I'm a so. I'm a *sis*. I'm your worst nightmare. 

**(Modern Family, S6E19 Grill, Interrupted) Phil [to Claire, after she demeans his cheerleading past]: You know what a human pyramid is without hours of training? Ten obituaries. -- That was pure evil genius by Gloria to teach Luke and Manny a lesson when they stole the tequila. -- They are *killing* me with the Haley/Andy relationship! I am dying for them to get together.

**(Madam Secretary, S1E18 The Time Is at Hand) This was a heavy episode. I felt horrible for the father that came to Elizabeth for help because his daughter was involved with the doomsday cult, when he was waiting for her and she didn't return. And there were some intense moments, when Henry was in the compound, trying to negotiate with the cult leader. Mike B and Stevie's new (much older) boyfriend at least balanced the episode out with humor.

**(The Big Bang Theory, S8E19 The Skywalker Incursion) ::snort:: When Sheldon realized that "play that funky music, white boy" were actual song lyrics and then proceeded to pick apart the lyrics. -- We didn't even have to see what was the funniest moment of the episode: listening to Sheldon get tazed. The rest, George Lucas and all the stuff with the TARDIS was kind of lost on me, since I'm neither a Star Wars nor Dr Who fanatic. -- LOL: Bernadette manipulating the outcome of the ping pong game.

**(Law and Order: SVU, S16E18 Devastating Story) Blah, ripped from the headline. Clearly spun together from the Duke lacrosse rape accusations from about ten years ago and this latest campus rape article controversy from Rolling Stone magazine. Complete with barely veiled nods to America's Most Wanted and Dateline NBC (don't watch alone) (sorry, couldn't resist). -- Sometimes I can't help but feel, based on his abruptness, that Carisi is misplaced, being in SVU. -- That professor advocate woman should have been prosecuted. I wanted to scream when she said "look what it took to get anyone to care." ... Yeah, an elevated fabricated story. That's not true caring. It's manipulation and taking advantage and as a result, the legitimate case blew up from lies.

**(The Blacklist, S2E18 Vanessa Cruz) Roger Hobbs: I've been quietly lobbying on your behalf. Red: I appreciate that. Hobbs: No, you don't. You expect it. -- Hobbs: These are powerful men. They don't respond to threats. Red: No, with powerful men one must appeal to their vanity. -- Liz: I need you to put me in touch with someone who brokers shelf corporations. Red: Good. I need the Fulcrum. --Two things that consistently aggravate me: Why do they use the gloves as a grabbing device rather than putting them on when they're at a crime scene? And do characters drive without looking at the road??  -- Red: You need to run, Jasper. Run like the prairie wind, because I'm coming for you, and when I find you, I'm going to cut out that forked tongue of yours and deliver it to The Director myself. ... Moral of the story: Do *not* double cross Red. -- Vanessa Cruz was both seriously messed up, and obviously very smart, thorough, and organized, judging by her office space. And, considering Mr Kaplan's visit to her, I'm guessing we haven't seen the last of her. The question is: what does Red want with her? -- I cannot believe Tom told Liz the truth that Red hired him. I'm even more shocked that Red finally admitted it to Liz. I'm a little peeved that Liz didn't want any further explanation from Red, because *I* want one!! So, now Red has the Fulcrum in his possession and he is almost immediately the victim of a shooting. My guess is it's someone in the Group who has the most to lose by the Fulcrum's appearance. Unfortunately, when an entire show revolves around a character like Red, some of the "gasp effect" is lost, because, unless they want this show to end, neither he nor Liz are expendable.

**(Last Man Standing, S4E20 Restaurant Opening) Mike [to Kristin]: If you want Ed to take you seriously, you don't want your dad handling this for you. you wanna take charge, *take charge*. -- Ed: Baskets...a little middle of the road, but it's always safer to drive there. Mike: Actually, Ed, it's *not*. Let's get going. We've got to get on the road before Ed does. -- For once, Kristin had a legit point with Ed undermining her restaurant management, but I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Kyle put her in her place, with his "you only got this job because of your dad" remark. -- Mike: You know why I hate French doors? You can't pretend like you're not home. -- Gee, for a packed restaurant, Kriston sure spends a lot of time with her parents at their table, rather than tending to other guests.

**(Mom, S2E18 Dropped Soap and a Big Guy on a Throne) The scenes with Bonnie's injured back, along with Bonnie and Christy flirting with the hot doctor, and that pass-the-phone conversation with Marjorie, were all hilarious. I cannot believe that Bonnie is officially off the wagon, though, and indulging in pain pills. No amount of humor can counterbalance that kind of heavy.

**(Blue Bloods, S5E19 Through the Looking Glass) That opening scene, lighting that man on fire, was horrifying. -- Called it! I said Alex McBride stopped seeking answers, because he found something he didn't want to know about his mother's murder. -- When they were sitting around the family dinner table, talking about the question Nikki wanted to ask for her senior project. "What advice would you give your younger self?" After they had all discussed their answers, they turned the question back on her. She said "never forget where you come from." I found that to be a strange answer from a high school senior. How far away has she traveled from "where she came from" that she needs to remind her younger self not to forget? -- That manipulative reporter was awful. She would rather sit in prison than divulge the identity of a murderer, especially when it would prevent other deaths. For a while, I thought Frank might end up with a love interest, but now I really hope he doesn't, because she disgusts me.


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