Sunday, March 29, 2015


Just watched the trailer for “Spectre.”  I’ll be buying a ticket for this one.  

I really liked “Skyfall” so I likely would make the effort to see the latest Bond flick in a theater even without watching a preview.  

I think it’s time to share my overall Bond experience with the world.  


It began in 1982.  Summer.  

I didn’t see my first Bond flick at this time.  That happened the summer before.  “For Your Eyes Only.”  I remember seeing it but it didn’t have a huge impact on me save for a couple of parts.  One was about 2/3 through the film when Jimmy and the female lead were tied up on a boat, then dragged through water with the villains expecting them to wind up as shark food.  (At the time I didn’t know that the coral was supposed to make them good and bloody.)  The other memorable moment took place at the end, with the bad guys dispatched and the world again a safe place to be.  James and Melina Havelock (the same gal from the scenario just mentioned) are smooching, then go for a skinny dip while the end credits roll.  What adolescent guy wouldn’t recall that for a while??

Yet after leaving the theater I didn’t pay much attention to this character until July of ’82.  My family was in the process of relocating from Houston to Albuquerque.  Dad and I, along with Fred the Good Dog drove across much of Texas, staying the night in Lubbock.  The Holiday Inn had HBO, which just happened to be showing “FYEO.”  Dad hadn’t seen it (I think it was Mom, me, my younger sister, and maybe a cousin or two who went to the movies the year before).  I recall Dad laughing at the part during the ski chase in which the guy at the rear of the bobsled does a double-take when he sees ol’ Jimmy on skis right behind them.  And then Dad laughing again at the ending, featuring a Margaret Thatcher look-alike on a congratulatory phone call with who she thinks is Bond, but is in reality just the Havelock’s parrot since the two protagonists have already departed for the nude nighttime swim.  

I wound up seeing this movie a few more times, all courtesy of HBO and the Holiday Inn chain of hotels since my family stayed there until closing on the house.  Then in ’83 I saw “Octopussy” but again it didn’t begin any major drift toward 007 fandom.  

I’m thinking it was for the Christmas of 1982 or perhaps ’83 that the next chapter begins.  From a distant relative I received a gift card for either of the big-chain bookstores at the time, B. Dalton & Waldenbooks.  Part of my haul upon leaving whichever one it was included two Ian Fleming J.B. novels:  Live and Let Die and The Spy Who Loved Me.  I brought the first one to school with the intent to read it during SSR (Sustained Silent Reading), a 15-minute timeframe in the mid-morning in which everyone in the building, principal included, was to sit and read.  

Fleming’s prose was enough to keep this 18-year-old’s attention.  Before long I was reading the other book, then slowly added to my collection.  Along the way I was lucky enough to get to a double-feature at one of the theaters near UNM, the flicks were “Thunderball” and “Goldfinger.”  Together with ABC’s Sunday Night Movie (or Saturday depending upon what the other networks scheduled) I began accumulating a fondness for both the books and the movies.  Then when summer hit I worked with a guy who was reading an older-print version of Goldfinger.  He told me about the used bookstores in town which led me to obtain all of the Fleming books not in print at the time.  

And more in the next installment…

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Here's hoping...

The Big 12 conference had a bad day today.  

Real bad.  

Here's hoping the back luck continues into tomorrow.  My school, New Mexico State Cow College takes on Big 12 basketball mainstay Kansas.  

Right now that's about all I have regarding that matchup.  Maybe I should type "15 seed defeats 2 seed" into a search engine. 

Thursday, March 12, 2015


For this blog some posts are quick, natural.  Just let the words flow.

If a topic strikes me I usually don't have to labor long to get the prose out to the reading public.

It's been a while since I've done a longer flow post.  You might be seeing a couple in the coming days as I have topics itching to become words here.

And a few posts are more difficult.  Either I'm writing about something emotionally painful or it may be otherwise labor-intensive than most of my entries here.

Today is one of those posts.

Last Thursday I traveled to Manhattan (Kansas) with the plan to return on Saturday evening.  A professional venture in the loose sense of the term.  Actually that's my verbiage to describe a Rotary Club training event.  But anyhow, it wasn't like I just decided to go east on a lark.

Friday all-day stuff comes and goes.  So does the Friday evening tough pork chop meal but hey, it beats rubber chicken.

I'm back in the hotel room and enjoying a good read when the iPhone rings.  It's the wife.

And the tone of her voice, before she even gives me any details, tells me something's not right.

She and our child are on the floor of the master bedroom.  Staying away from the windows.

There was a shooting in the park just yards from our house.  The gunman is still on the loose and the reverse 911 system made a call out to alert the whole town.

Wife has her handgun within reach.  Clip is loaded.  Daughter has her Bible open, looking up the verses that deal with being afraid.

They're terrified.  And what good am I, some 200 miles away?

I did pray right then and there, over the phone.  I still felt very helpless.  

Understandably it took me a long time to get to sleep.  And the sleep I did have was fitful.

By the next morning I knew no news was good news.  I didn't call home or text them too early, figuring they had less sleep than I.  Later, during one of my breakout workshops, I got a text from wife indicating perp was caught around 1 a.m. near the town of Oberlin.

Things wrapped up and I was home just after dark on Saturday.  Thankful for safety and that my gals had the right tools in a crisis situation.

I write this to not only let family know what happened but also perhaps as some therapy for myself.  And I am very very grateful.

How difficult was this to write?  So challenging it took me more than one sitting to complete.

Monday, March 09, 2015

Post-Event Perceptions

As indicated in a previous entry Geoana and I watched the Apple special event this evening.  Fashion gal was favorable to  Watch but admitted she'd be really hard on the device if she owned one.  I understand, who wants to spend that much $$$ only to have the thing be scratched and dinged.  

Geogal, on the other hand, seemed distracted and didn't pay much attention to the TV.  She also shot down my suggestion that for her April birthday I give her an Edition since they only start at 10 grand.  (Yes, I was joking.)  

The new MacBook seems OK but I still am enamored with my Air.  

HBO Now?  Might be worth considering. 

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Time To Stop The Whining

Last post seemed to have quite a bit of that.

However checking the weather websites it seems I will get my wish.  Temps next week will be in the 60's and 70's with overnight lows not much below freezing.  Will feel much better than the 4 degrees outside temp this a.m.

And for other things...

Watched "Clueless" two Saturday nights ago.  We sometimes have difficulty with finding movies all three of us will enjoy.  Plus I haven't seen this flick since about 1995 or 96 so I didn't remember much of it.

I will, now, remember this line (spoken by the main character's father):  "If anything happens to my daughter, I got a .45 and a shovel.  I doubt anyone would miss you."

Highly likely some teenage boys in town will hear the same from my mouth.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Will It Ever Get Here?

Warmer weather?

Yes, I know we were spoiled a few weekends ago but that now seems like ancient history.  

Even the crocuses in the front flowerbed are starting to poke their sprouts up.  As if it's their own way of saying the seasons must now change.  

Snow is predicted for overnight tonight but less than an inch is expected in our burg.  Hopefully that will be it for the season (but I don't know if I will take that bet).  

And if it ain't the white stuff it's the wind.  I know the wind around here is the stuff of legend but several months of wind chill take their toll.  

Remember when I lived in Arizona and thought a place with real winter would be fun?  

I take it back.  

Monday, March 02, 2015


A week from today Apple has an event.

We all know what it's about:   Watch.

Even though I'm not a potential buyer (not now, anyway, since I said the same thing about the iPad and MacBook Air when they debuted) I am still curious about the models and pricing.  And about 50 other details.

I might need to take our household fashionista (Geoana) and watch the keynote together.  Given Apple is doing print advertising in Vogue that says a lot for their target market.  My child should have a great take on how the device actually looks.

I'm also wondering how a product that might cost several thousand $$$ for its high-end version will still be usable many years from now.  Timepieces are meant to last quite a while.  I still have a watch from my college days (that was a long time ago, folks).  And Apple is known for not supporting its first version of products for very long.  Reference:  iPod Touch first generation and iPad first generation.

But like so many others I enjoy watching (pun intended) these products be introduced and the overall reaction, first from the pundits then from the buying public.

Sunday, March 01, 2015

In Honor Of Leonard Nimoy

Given the news of his passing on Friday I began thinking of what to watch that evening.  We have the movies and Star Trek TOS is easily available through Netflix streaming.  

However I decided to take a less-obvious episode.  Star Trek TNG also is offered via Netflix streaming and I remembered a two-parter.  Took a quick look through the season list and found it in Season 5 (some might call this season the zenith of the series).  

Unification, parts 1 and 2.  

I recalled only bits and pieces of this story since so much time has passed since I viewed it.  No matter, good storytelling doesn't age and these episodes were a pleasant way to spend a Friday evening with the family.  

To no one's surprise, Me-TV network chose to air "Amok Time" as their Saturday evening Star Trek: TOS episode.  However I want to take my blog space and recommend a few other eps where Nimoy really shined:  

Season 1:  This Side of Paradise

Season 2:  Return to Tomorrow

Season 3:  All Our Yesterdays

First choice?  Spock is freed of his Vulcan stoicism, has an affair of the heart and almost pummels Kirk to death.  Second one?  Nimoy gets to play a character other than "ol' pointy-ears."  Third one?  Spock almost gives McCoy an a__-kicking.  

And while I was going through the episode list for the hyperlinks I noticed "This Side of Paradise" follows "A Taste of Armageddon," which was the Me-TV Saturday evening Star Trek show from two weeks ago.  If proceeding logically (sorry, couldn't resist), then my choice from Season One will be the episode for this coming Saturday evening.  Keep an eye on the TV listings.  

And rest in peace, Leonard Nimoy.