Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Cinéma Vérité -OR- Pathways on Life's All-Too-Short Green

Pathway on the side of Damon's house along 16th St. NW in the 16th Street Heights section of Washington, D.C., 6:07PM July 21, 2013.

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I did not think I would be posting a new entry tonight -- although, as you can tell, my stated and actual blogging schedule rarely match up with the latter significantly more frequent than the former -- but I brought the computer home tonight.

For starters, please see my previous entry for an update including two additional pictures. The first is of my great Uncle Richard "Bubby" Acerra who died last Friday that is from the Asbury Park Press obituary (also linked there) that appeared on Monday. I'm reposting the obit picture at left.

The other is of all the original Acerra children in that 1937 Newark Airport photo (it turns out that Quill (!) had a copy of the "unmarked" JPEG from the scanned version I made). I'm reposting it below. I've also relabeled the original image as being circa 1937 rather than 1939.


It's so strange (even surreal) to think that some of my grandmother's siblings are still alive in 2013. As I wrote back in January, she died now over 25 years ago. Yet in that picture of Uncle Bubby, I can see my grandma's eyes.

The rest of this entry is just a personal update and possibly a brief political update (though I'm reluctant to do so now that I've mentioned family members).

My workday today was quite busy with all the editing and formatting of the Hawaii report chapters, although my co-worker (L.) is working on it as well (and more quickly than I am). I also had my annual evaluation, and (related to my previous point) while it was mostly just fine, I kinda suck at time management and need to fix it. This is important when you are a Federal contractor.


This evening, I opted NOT to go to the first of this summer season's "Screen on the Green" nights (pictured from another night in an unspecified recent year above) on the National Mall with Nick, Sarah, and possibly some others (part of Andrea's group).

The movie tonight was E.T. (which I remember seeing with my mom and Ray in 1982 when it came out.) The line up for 2013 is listed here. I guess I wouldn't mind seeing Tootsie.

The Screen on the Green movie line up in recent years has been mediocre at best.

But owing to my uncertain work week schedule with so much left to do in this project (which has a drop-dead deadline of July 31st), I opted to go to the gym instead.

I had a decent gym workout, except the pool was so damn crowded that I didn't even try to go in, which kind of ruined the whole nightly workout. I weighed myself and it was at 147.5 pounds (same as last Wednesday), which at this point is fine with me (although I wouldn't mind being a BIT more muscular). As I noted before, depending on how you reckon muscle mass gain, I've lost at least 36 and maybe up to 40 pounds of fat since late June 2012.

On Sunday, I skipped the gym and instead biked up to Damon's place in the 16th Street Heights area (near where Gary lives). His wife was away and he was home with his not-quite-1-year-old little boy, who is so tiny (not even two feet tall yet when he stands, or at least tries to) and he is so adorable. A family friend (Rachel) was over and we drank some beers and had nice conversation in a cool and pleasant house -- WITHOUT watching ANY television. Damon's son (S.) provided the entertainment, not to mention all those interesting toys that talk, sing, and play music at you, all while flashing.

Dinner (pictured above) was quite good.

Thereafter, as planned, I headed over to Andrea and Imara's place near Fort Totten. I was invited to dinner at their house, and I biked east over to Fort Totten Park / past the Metro and into North Michigan Park where they live. We had a nice dinner and I got to see the two dogs and two cats they have. In addition, Andrea's 55 gallon fish tank is oddly hypnotic with its fish and gurgling water and humming filters.

No this isn't Andrea's aquarium ... It's a picture of one I found online. I'm posting it because this is sort of how any aquarium of mine would end up looking, a sort of aquatic swamp.

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I left around 9PM and biked to the Fort Totten Metro (admittedly, this isn't the best part of the city, ESPECIALLY Fort Totten Park at night, but it was a quick ride) and caught a Green Line to Columbia Heights station. Although U Street / Cardozo station is somewhat closer, the nighttime ride over to and then down the hill of 16th Street (along the side of Meridian Hill Park) is much more pleasant. I was home by 930PM and within two hours totally crashed and went to sleep for a solid 8 hours, which is just what I needed.

Yours truly on the Metro Green Line heading the short distance from Fort Totten to Columbia Heights station, Washington, D.C., 9:15PM July 21, 2013.

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All in all, it was a good Sunday. Also, I only spent $5 the whole day. In addition, I found more money -- $30 on Saturday in the form of a $10 and a $20 bill -- and today I found $20 at the Farragut West Metro. This is $50 in addition to the $50 bill I found several weeks ago. The odd thing is I had gone for about 2 years without finding so much as a quarter.

I was actually going to give the $20 to this gaunt homeless lady who sleeps on the steps of St. Matthew's Cathedral after the place closes and the big doors are locked. She has been there for years, having aged considerably from when I first became aware of her back in the mid-1990s, at which time I didn't even realize she was homeless, as she used to dress quite elegantly and had on makeup. (She still "dresses up" but the clothes are badly worn, as is the scarf she wears on her head.) However, although I've said hello to her, I'm a bit reluctant to go up to her and hand her money.

I finished doing my laundry and I need to make a late dinner.

There were some drenching thunderstorms to the west and north of D.C. and Baltimore tonight. It downpoured briefly around Dupont Circle a short while ago. It isn't as hot and humid and disgusting as last week (today "only" reached 89F for a high at KDCA and KIAD and 88F at KBWI). Of note, there was an interesting climate record at KDCA set last week, as noted in the Sterling LWX discussion on Sunday. I'll just quote it verbatim (where "YDA" means Saturday, July 20, 2013):

YDA DCA BROKE THE RECORD FOR MOST CONSECUTIVE DAYS / NGTS WHERE THE TEMP DIDN'T DROP BLO 80. RECORD IS NOW 5 ECLIPSING THE PRVS RECORD SENT [sic] IN JUL 2011. THIS MRNG DCA SPENT 4 HRS W/ TEMPS IN THE U70S.

PRIOR TO 2011 THERE HAD NEVER BEEN A PD OF LONGER THAN 2 NGTS WHEN THE LOW DIDN'T GET BLO 80.

ONE LAST "DC 80" FACT - THE EARLIEST RECORDED DATE WHEN THE TEMP DIDN'T DROP BLO 80 IN DC WAS 7/20/1876.

Obviously, the 1876 record was a pre-KDCA Washington, D.C., one from the earliest days of official weather record-keeping.

OK, that's all for now. I'm going to refrain from any political themed discussions, though I'll link to a Jonathan Chait piece "Anarchists of the House" and two Paul Krugman thematically related ones -- a blog entry "The Great Pension Scare" and his Monday New York Times op-ed, "Detroit, the New Greece".

My next planned update will be either Wednesday or Thursday night.

--Regulus

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