“Why Not Smile” by R.E.M.
I’ve always loved this song from R.E.M.’s much-maligned album Up; the first sans drummer Bill Berry, there’s a much quieter, almost etherial nature to the album in general. There’s such a sense of hope about this song that it gets me every time—for a song that starts with the quiet lyric “the concrete broke your fall” it’s surprising how upbeat this song ultimately is. (There’s a not-very-good fan video of the song on YouTube that at least lets you hear the song itself.)
The Cactus Fairy
Laura came into my office today with both hands full of tiny little pots, each with their own little cactus. She’d been replanting some of the cacti from a large number that she’d raised from little dots, and by the time she left, three cacti were sitting on my bookshelf next to the window. They’re wee little things and adorable. Hopefully I won’t over-water them (as some other co-workers have accidentally done).
Han Ah Reum’s Wasabi Green Peas
I used to think that all wasabi green peas were the same. You know, crunchy, tasting of slight spice and heat. That sort of thing. When I work at Big Planet Comics on a Sunday (about once every six weeks or so), I’ll stop at Han Ah Reum (also known as H Mart) and do a little shopping. It’s a Korean chain of grocery stores that has a location near the store, and it’s always a journey into excitement. I wouldn’t have expected my best purchase from the last trip, though, to have been some wasabi green peas that I threw into the basket as an afterthought. They’ve got an amazing level of spice to them; not just in terms of heat, but rather in flavor. I ate the last handful this evening and it took all the control in the world to not have devoured them all sooner.
The Wire Series Finale
This actually made me both happy and sad. I started watching The Wire on June 2nd, 2002. The show began that night, and a combination of a love for HBO’s shows at the time as well as recognizing cast members from Oz and, well, I decided I should give it a try. To be honest, I wasn’t terribly sure at first if I was going to stick around. The first season began very slowly, but I decided to hang in there and I was definitely rewarded for doing so. Sunday’s episode closed out its fifth and final season, and it makes me so happy that I’ve been able to enjoy 60 fantastic episodes. I’d stood up to get something across the room about ten minutes from the end, and ended up standing in place, staring at the screen through its finale. That felt right, somehow. Standing at attention, some sort of show of respect, to what I came to feel was one of the best shows on television. It never got high viewership numbers, but the amount of critical praise continually heaped on the show probably kept it alive. I’ll miss this a great deal, but I’m so glad I got to enjoy as much of it as I did.
Driving Home In Daylight
Now don’t get me wrong, I hate the fact that when I wake up for work it’s still dark out. But being able to leave work while it’s still light is a huge thing for me. It gives me more incentive to exercise, to do things, to have the chance to do more than just go home and eat dinner and prepare for bed. I went out and ran after work yesterday, and it was lovely. I can’t wait for it to be a month from now, by which time it will be a little warmer and lighter even later. Hurrah!