W.B. at the movies: Shin Godzilla

Shin Godzilla

A giant sea creature is burrowing up a crowded urban river, tossing boats aside like confetti and generally killing and maiming everyone in its path.

The government calls a meeting. And there, everyone considers forming a committee, which will build a coalition, which will discuss creating a task force that will develop a report. All along, interchangeable faces earnestly debate the options regarding what should be done. And when the time comes to act or die, no one can make a decision.

Meanwhile, the big monster just keeps on a-coming. Continue reading W.B. at the movies: Shin Godzilla

scene 8

scene 8

(scene 1, part 1)  (scene 1, part 2) (scene 2)(scene 3)(scene 4)(scene 5)(scene 6)(scene 7)

It’s bad enough that Buzz always made comments about the aliens wanting to fatten us up for meals. It was worse that the morgue reminded me of a commercial kitchen with the stainless steel door on the cooler and all the stainless shelving and equipment.

“Won’t take long,” the sheriff said as he walked me down the corridor and through the swinging door to the place where they housed the recently departed for processing. “This is the tough part.”

“Yeah,” I said. “Poor Buzz. He didn’t deserve to die early.”

I didn’t mean for that to come out as an accusation, and I hoped it didn’t sound that way because it might signal that I knew more about what happened a few hours earlier than I was letting on. No such luck, as usual. Continue reading scene 8

O, give me a beer

Leinenkugel's Anniversary Lager

A couple of months ago or so, Leinenkugel Brewing Co. introduced something called Anniversary Lager. Just the concept is interesting: This is the 150th anniversary of Leinenkugel’s. It’s also the 400th anniversary of Hofbräu München.

“This special beer combines the best of both breweries,” the box says. “Brewed in the spirit of Reinheitsgebot (purity law), this German-style amber lager is brewed with some imported German malts and all-American hops to create a beer that is flavorful, balanced and refreshing.”

Rarely does a product live up to the copy hype, but Leinenkugel’s Anniversary Lager is indeed flavorful, balanced and refreshing. It’s been my go-to adult beverage all summer. Of course, all bets come off every Aug. 1.

Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest is an annual tradition for me. Two or three years ago I realized that it appears on the shelves on Aug. 1 every year. I posted this photo on Facebook with the caption, “Yep, it’s really August again! Here’s the proof.”

Leinenkugel's Oktoberfest

I got a handful of comments about “Oh, no, October, noooo!!!!” from people who didn’t get the point. I wasn’t making fun of the release date two months before October; I was celebrating Aug. 1 the way I always do now – by seeking out the new release at the beer store.

This Märzen style beer is a smooth, malty treat that goes down easy and comfortable. From now until somewhere around mid-November, this will be the taste that soothes me after a day’s work (or at least once I finish my stash of Anniversary Lager). I love my Yuengling when I have the opportunity to quaff it, but Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest is my best old late summer/early fall friend. Yum!

Between these two, it’s been a Leinenkugel’s year for me. They get a lot of mileage out of their Honey Weiss and summer shandies, but you can have those. I’ll take these great German-style beers every time.

What are the odds

After inhaling All Around the Town, a novel by Mary Higgins Clark, in one weekend, I decided to try another of her mystery-suspense stories and pulled the only available audiobook out of the local library: No Place Like Home.

I was immediately put off by the book’s outlandish premise: A woman who killed her mother accidentally at age 10 while protecting her from her brutal stepfather has pledged to her dying first husband not to reveal her past to anyone again – and her second husband just happens to buy her a new house for her birthday that just happens to be the childhood home where her mother died.

The monstrous coincidence – which I presumed would turn out not to be a coincidence – and the character’s reticence to tell her husband the truth (her husband!!!), almost put me off to continuing the story.

But then the narrator explained where the story is set: It all comes down in Mendham, New Jersey, less than five miles from where I spent the second half of my childhood. What are the odds, of all the books in the world, I would randomly pick up one that was set in my hometown?

If that kind of coincidence is possible in the real world, why not the crazy coincidence Clark asks me to accept in hers? So off we went …

Fragment from a dream

He turned the corner and the snake-like things were there, slowly slithering toward him. His heart was beating hard.

“Now,” he said, charging the makeshift device, “let’s see if this works.”

He was awakened by his wife stirring from sleep beside him. It took a few moments for his quick breaths to become even.

“Ow, wow,” she purred. “I just had the weirdest dream. There were these things, sort of like snakes or caterpillars but with each segment made of everyday things. When we were able to dissect them, one link in the chain would be, I don’t know, a Lego brick, and the next would be like a food item, and it was only every few links that there was something – alien – and it was those alien segments that gave the snakes life. But it seemed like I was the only person who cared that these things were taking over, and – why do you look so upset? It was just a freaky dream.”

“I was having the same dream,” he said. “We had just figured out what it would take to defeat them, and I was just powering up the machine to go after them when I woke up, and you woke up at the same time.”

She looked at him with alarm, and then smiled, touching his face.

“Wow, now we’re having the same dreams together,” she said. “Aren’t we the cutest couple?”

The morning calm was broken by a snakey sound outside the door.

Before that happened, this happened

peninsula playersweb

The best time to attend a Peninsula Players outdoor production is the last performance. But that makes offering a review a challenge, because who wants to read that they missed a chance to see a real gem?

For readers who live beyond the reach of Door County, Wisconsin, the Players are a professional theater troupe who produce four shows every summer in their renowned Theater in the Garden just south of Fish Creek, plus a fall production in the friendly confines of Door Community Auditorium.

The outdoor shows – which are actually staged inside a wonderful pavilion so rainouts are no longer an issue – usually take place at 8 p.m. (7:30 p.m. Sundays), but the last performance is a 4 p.m. matinee, which allows budding geezers like me to get home by sunset even though we live an hour away (my home county is a looong peninsula).

And so we attended the July 2 final performance of “The Actuary,” arriving an hour early so we could stroll through the garden, enjoy the view of the water, and watch other theater goers nurse their glass of wine or two before the show. Continue reading Before that happened, this happened