This is the month of cherubs, albeit randy ones who encourage the randy sort of love. Thought we'd start with some traditional Renaissance putti and such.

Believe me, it beats another shot of an empty tree or downtown building. This year we live in an imaginary place.

So how was it? You ask. This indistinguishable iteration of the weekend with all its minor pleasures, all in a row, rolled out in sequence. How was it? Let us examine the quotidian rituals with excruciating details.

We begin with the nap on Friday. It was like most recent naps: under 30 minutes. It was sufficient. If I wake before the alarm, it was sufficient.

The pizza. It was a Bellatoria, thin crust, in the oven long enough to caramelize the inch of cheese around the crust. It was completely and absolutely acceptable, although it reminded me of how I haven’t had a Gino’s deep dish in a very long time, just as having a Connie’s reminds me that it’s been a while since I’ve had a Davanni’s. Pizzas, they are like-a the woman, each is different, but makes-a man recollect the others, si?

Friday night I watched an old movie, because it was Friday night, and that 2025 B&W World isn’t going to spring out of the ether fully formed. It made me think of that film guy who was woodshedded last week for excoriating all old movies as stagey and dull and naive. He was, as many pointed out, an idiot, but I think I now know the exact movie to which he was referring.

I did some updating on the website. I scanned a lot, including a series of TV Guides. I’m always surprised at how good the writing was, for a 40 mil circ mag about television. There was a piece about a studio tour, about a big backlot, and it began with a paragraph about the works of Kafka. More about that on Wednesday.

I don’t know what I will do with these, but I like that I have them.

The Friday Whiskey began with Maker’s, followed by a Grant’s. You cannot lose with either. I watched some television, and enjoyed the last treat of the Friday: Ice Cream. It’s Prairie Farms, Sea Salt Caramel. The one I returned because it had crystalized. This one is slightly crystalized as well, so it has to be softened a bit before eating. It was good!

Friday night verdict: 10 for 10, considering.

SATURDAY: Woke too early. Why was I up? Six hours and twenty minutes. I’ll pay for this. But the good thing about Saturday is the permission for something as decadent as a two o’clock nap. Now, this would throw off the day’s coffee procession, since I always have a cup of Cuban coffee after the nap, the first of four, the next one being an hour later. If I have the first cup at three, that means cup #2 is at four? Cocked hat, I tell you! It’s all hurled violently into a cocked hat!

Well, get up and get to it. We begin with the first of the weekend’s indulgent breakfasts. It’s two eggs, three peppers: jalapeño, Red Fresco, habanero. One sausage patty, one divot of small hash browns cooked crispy, half an English Muffin with butter and sugar-free raspberry jam.

Everything was delicious. Let’s get to work.

Scanning and editing and writing and such. Collated all the month’s work, assembled the month’s daily video, everything up to the cloud. Listened to a podcast about the Apple Vision device; watched some Rick Beato videos; napped at 2:30, because I wanted to. Had a dream that began abruptly - I was in a chair, like a big barber’s chair, typing on my laptop, and it suddenly rose fast and nearly slammed me into the ceiling. Once I realized it wasn’t going to smush me, I returned to typing. In the dream I wrote a Bleat, and I thought it was all true - but upon awakening I realized it was delusional. Wondered how the person I dreamed about was doing. Wondered if she was totally gray now but still had the same glasses.

Googling . . . Nope. Found her dad’s obit, though.

Helped wife take all the ornaments off the big trees in the front yard. Overdue. It’s time.

6 PM: Made the burgers. I have it down to a process that takes exactly 30 minutes, including two air-frier sessions of bacon cooking. During the second, the ground beef is prepared with some bacon fat, Wooster-shire sauce, jarlic. Patties in for 380 / 12 min, with a big chunk for Birch.

Chop the onions and the pickles. If you cut the slices of cheese and place them on top of the air frier for the last two minutes, they soften nicely, so they’ll melt when you put them on for the last minute - which, of course, you also spend nuking the bacon for extra crispiness and warming the buns. It was, as always, the best burger. My recipe is perfection. I have surpassed restaurant burgers.

The evening was spent on more scanning and rewriting and collating and updating and watching an old movie. The Whiskey: A Bulleit, followed by the Traders Joe Blended Scotch. You’d think I’d finish with something from the top shelf, but they’re reserved for special times. The TJBS really opens up in ice. It is strenuously downvoted in many online reviews. It has a late burn, I will admit. But it’s front-flavor friendly. I like it!

Same experience with the ice cream. Total Saturday success rate: 10 for 10, considering.

Sunday: I made fresh pancakes, and finished the bacon from the previous night. Both were perfect. The afternoon was the usual nullity, with household chores - vacuuming, cleaning the fridge, scouring things. After dinner - hot dish in peppers, a Costco speciality - we cleaned out some drawers and did away with superfluous items. Probably don’t need seven sets of chopsticks. And now here we are, about an hour away from a nice glass of red wine. Total weekend success rate: 10 for 10, considering.

I mean, every day is like that. 10 out of 10, considering. There’s always the considering. The 10 part is waking and making it all along through the hours to the end of the day, when sleep comes, and sleep’s another 10. Good work, good food, a few observations, an insight gleaned, a surprise, a reaffirmation. A wife hug, a dog skritch, night off from the ab roller (Friday) but both nights on the angled push-ups (age plus five) and then sleep with the promise of . . .

Pancakes. Or whatever version of that the day offers.

This year we'll begin our weeks with a look at the logos of 1934. The Gazette of the Patent Office printed hundreds of trademarks to nail down the style and look and text for the owners, and thus provided a fascinating record of commercial design. The question for the year: how many of these still exist?

One line for aroma:

Jean-Babtiste Rigaud got into the business in 1852, and left the business to his son and widow in 1898. Still around! So our score of dead-to-live trademarks is now 3 live, 2 dead.

Oh: Right! The answer to last week's Lance.




We've seen a few of this series, but I don't think we've done this one.

I ought to know, I know. Anyway

The horror huckster. But his earlier programmers had some nice touches, so all is not lost, not yet.

  The opening theme is correct, and much heavier.

I'm not going to lavish attention on the ordinary shots or sequences. I bring this up to show you where they toss the entire franchise out the window, just to pad out the story. It’s really a standard Whistler plot, easy to wrap up in 24 brisk minutes. By padding it out with irrelevant scenes and the enervating, sleepwalking presence of Richard Dix, they get a programmer-length movie out of it. But then . . . there’s this.


The Whistler never appears in any of the stories. He never influences them. He merely observes. He’s affecting the action here. He’s inserting himself into the story. This is like the Watcher rolling up his sleeves and kicking Galactus in the yarbles.

I’ll give Castle credit for doing what he can, though. This fellow is just great. Weird. Always wears this thin rictus for all six lines of dialogue.



Oh . . . one more thing!




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