Susan’s Salon: 1/2 January 2022

Susan’s Salon: 1/2 January 2022

You can use the comment section to chat about whatever you want. Susan’s Salon is posted early on Monday (Australian Eastern Standard Time, which is still Sunday in most places). It’s fine to be sad, worried, vaccinated, unvaccinated-yet, angry or maybe even happy (or all of those things at once).

Susan was still wearing her Santa Claus costume on New Year’s Eve 1921

Please feel free to post what you like (either troubling news or pleasant distractions) in the comments for this open thread. [However, no cranky conflicts between each other in the comments.] Links, videos, cat pictures 🐈 etc are fine! Whatever you like! 😇


31 responses to “Susan’s Salon: 1/2 January 2022”

  1. My kid’s boyfriend has tested positive for Covid, and my kid lives with him in a very small apartment. So I’m fretting just a little. They’re both fully vaccinated and my kid has had the booster (the boyfriend didn’t qualify yet). So far the boyfriend’s case is very mild.

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    • I had a Covid scare last week when my personal care giver was feeling under the weather so she tested herself for Covid with an at home test and it was positive. She called her Primary Care Provider who told her to come in and get checked out which she did that afternoon. The Nurse Practitioner she saw assessed her and said she had the flu but gave her the more reliable overnight Covid test which was not surprisingly negative. She sent me an image of the test result.

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      • A member of my small bubble got positive test results last night, after we spent several hours together Saturday watching the Doctor Who special. I need to test soon. I’ve had no symptoms, but incubation can take longer than this.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Ontario has hit new heights in covidicity so of course DoFo is cutting back on testing.

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  3. Covid numbers are rising here again as well. The Netherlands closed all non-essential shops just before Christmas, so the Dutch flocked to North Germany to go shopping, spreading the omicron variant.

    Otherwise, it’s been a quiet, mild, wet and windy New Year’s weekend here. My neighbours decided to celebrate the second fireworks sales ban in a row (supposedly because of covid, but in truth because the Green Party hates fireworks and has always hated them) by burning fireworks of dubious legality.

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  4. New Year’s Eve fireworks freaked out Plush Dog so I didn’t get much sleep. Slept like a log last night though.
    Watched No Time to Die on DVD today. I much preferred the Brosnan era to the Craig films but this was a good one to go out on.
    Read Middlegame by McGuire. 300 really good pages but at 500 pages it was a lot less interesting. And I have some problems with the underlying pseudoscience. Still, I enjoyed it.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Had a low-key New Year’s Eve, after having celebrated a little more the previous night by going to see the new West Side Story movie and then drinking enough with a friend of ours that we felt a bit vague the next day. Whether it’s wise to go out to a movie these days I don’t know, but at least it was a small theater on an off night. And for my tastes at least, that movie is seriously excellent— one of the best things Spielberg has ever done, and one that benefits a lot from being on a big screen.

    On a grimmer note, I’m continuing to love the Station Eleven HBO adaptation, and I think my decision not to read the book first was the right one since it’s been able to surprise me more than a few times. My original glib impression of “this is like The Stand done in the style of The Leftovers and with no magic” has turned out to be kind of accurate, in ways that I really like: in particular, I think the depictions in episode 5 of a too-smart-for-his-own-good adolescent going down a dark path, and of a basically good person using manipulative techniques to get a group of survivors to work together, have a lot of overlap with aspects of The Stand that I always liked, but that the writers of this were able to get into in more depth. And the four actors playing the adult and the child versions of the main protagonist and antagonist are all doing great work; so is Lori Petty, who has been classing up everything she appears in ever since Point Break.

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    • I probably have an extra personal appreciation for Station Eleven just because it’s the only piece of fiction I can think of where both theater and comic books are so significant, both of those being things that are important to me and that I’ve personally tried to do(*). The treatment of comics in the TV show is a bit superficial, I think you can tell that it’s not coming from familiarity with them from a creator’s point of view, but I think the show works around that fairly well by only showing us tiny bits of the book in question, and implying that it’s a weird personal project by someone who didn’t really know what they were doing, and that its massive significance to the characters is largely due to their own personal circumstances rather than it being necessarily the greatest story ever. Also, something I have absolutely no trouble believing is that after decades of privately working on this thing, the artist produced a comic that looks like it’s only about 80 pages long; unfortunately that’s how these things often go.

      (* One of these days, I may try to write something about the connections between comics and theater in terms of form that I think are in some ways more interesting than the connections between comics and film. I made a slight effort to do something with that idea in grad school, but soon realized it’d involve more research than I was ready for.)

      Liked by 3 people

      • as someone who loves comics and used to do community theater, I’m curious about your thoughts on the connections.
        Bob Newhart’s third TV series, “Bob,” had him as a 1950s comics creator called out of retirement to work on a rebooted grim-and-gritty version of his character. It was sharper about comics than I’d have expected, but got a soft reboot after a season.

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        • I would have to go looking for my notes at this point, but some of it was about the use of space. A stage, like a page, lets you juxtapose scenes/characters that the viewer understands aren’t necessarily in the same space and time, as long as you’re not worried about the classical unities; that works regardless of whether you use visual delimiters (e.g. lighting or set elements) to create “panels”, or just deploy people across a bare space and trust in the viewer’s understanding of storytelling conventions to keep track of the intended flow. That’s not entirely impossible in film, but it never became a major part of the vocabulary of film for reasons both technical (split-screen effects produced via editing were prohibitively hard to do for many years) and traditional (there was a strong bias toward “the frame is a single point of view” because that’s the easiest way to get across the novel concept of “this is a photo but it’s moving”). Once film really took off, comics quickly picked up on film vocabulary, but the stage-like use of a page as a flexible unit had already been embedded in its early development in both East Asia and Europe.

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        • It was swell in the first season and sucked in the second.

          They actually made comics for the first year, printed dos-a-dos with the wholesome 50s version and the grim n gritty 90’s version. They were good.

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          • Yeah, the second season when they went generic workplace comedy was totally forgettable. The comics were okay, but as they parodied the Silver Age Mad Dog I wish they’d been more tongue in cheek on the grim-and-gritty one.

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  6. Happy New Year!

    I’m having a quiet few days, got addicted to Wordle ( https://powerlanguage.co.uk/wordle/) and trying to enjoy the hot fine summer weather.

    Went to Matrix:Resurrections on Boxing Day. I went to the 10am session at the local multiplex, the first of the day, and there were fewer than ten of us in the audience. Under our current system, cinemas are allowed to open so long as patrons are double vaccinated. They also allocate an empty seat between groups. I enjoyed the Matrix movie: it was very meta, with lots of sly knowing references to itself & the outside world and addressed many of the questions : why a sequel, how come Neo & Trinity are alive etc. It was not a necessary sequel but if you like this sort of thing (and I do), you’ll enjoy it. I also enjoyed spending time with Neo & Trinity after such a long time away (Reeves & Moss are so very comfortable inhabiting those characters). My only disappointment were the fight sequences which I thought had too many close-ups & jump-cuts, unlike the original which used a lot of wide shots so you could see the protagonists actually fighting..

    New Zealand’s COVID cases are reasonable stable at ~50 to 60 new cases a day for a population of ~5 million. So far the only 2 Omicron cases in the community do not appear to have spread. All other Omicron cases have so far been contained at the “border” quarantine hotels. Despite cries from opposition & critics, New Zealand has not dismantled its quarantine hotel system, and that has meant NZ has been able to keep Omicron out for now.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I had planned to see West Side Story (last year and this year both) but alas I waited too long and now it’s all Omicron-y out there.

    Had nibbles and bubbly, then finished the bubbly the next day.

    Only a couple of big booms on NYE, which is much improved from the month before and after 4th of July. Why they just have the loud noisemakers instead of the pretty sparkles is beyond me. If you’re going to break the law, at least make it entertaining. Watched proper fireworks on TV.

    EGG doesn’t mind the noise, but he too liked it better when there were sparkles to look at.

    I am not keeping track of his treat percentage since right now he’s eating small irregularly shaped ones that he can’t catch and I can’t drop. I’m wearing a glove to do it because even after washing my hands 3 times, they still smell like low tide. Naturally he thinks they are the best ever.

    It is now illegal to be anti-vax protesting within 100 feet of people at a vax site. Same with pro-forced-birth protesters. About time, I say.

    Jorts the cat continues to delight.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. My brother’s girlfriend has COVID-19, and is quite unwell with it (not unwell enough to be hospitalised fortunately). She was at the cricket with my two brothers, one of whom came up to see us the next day. This was about five days ago, and none of us have symptoms yet, so fingers crossed. But under the new exposure rules unless we’re symptomatic we can’t get a PCR test and RA tests are like hens’ teeth here at the moment. Fun, fun, fun.

    In less anxiety-inducing news, I watched the Witcher season 2 and enjoyed it as much as the first one. Now watching Hawkeye, and not as hugely excited by it as I thought I might be.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I saw Matrix: Resurrections on the SuperMegaSoundScreen, and it was enjoyable, but I’ve obviously forgotten a lot about the first 3 movies so some of the references were lost on me. I just kind of rolled with it, and it was fine, but there was more hand-to-hand combat and gunplay and less actual story than I prefer. But it was 2.5 hours of audio-visual candy, so hey, entertaining. And I adored Jessica Henwick, and am looking forward to seeing more of her in other films.

    I treated myself to a new cell phone for Christmas since my previous was a 2016 model and is now insufficient for new apps I need (I don’t use my cell phone much, except for phone calls, Ubers, bus schedules, and driving directions). I then spent quite a few hours on New Year’s Day trying to root my old phone so I could install a newer version of Android on it. I’m an IT geek and pretty good with tech and manuals, but it was rather frustrating; obviously the people creating the online guides and videos are experienced at rooting phones, so they often leave out critical details and I have to compare different how-tos to find the missing details. I finally just had to save a bunch of links and set it aside, and will maybe have another go at it at some point in the future.

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    • That reminds me that I have an old tablet at home that I had planned to root for a new Android version – but when I tried last time I had the same experience of being confused by the online guides I could find. They seem to leave out steps, and in particular they use terminology they never explain.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thanks for saying that, it makes me feel better. I’m pretty good with tech stuff, so it was frustrating.

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  10. Finished watching a ludicrous Harlen Coben adaptation on Netflix – but it starred Cush Jumbo, so there was that …

    Watched the Dr Who New Year special which I actually thought hit the mark for a seasonal show & I appreciated both the overall theme and the Dr’s homily about being caught in a cycle of repetition but hopefully learning something with each iteration which seemed topical *and* Sarah’s mum calling her on her mobile at 11.50 because ‘the phone lines will be jammed at midnight’ as that was exactly what my mum did! And it did havd Aisling Bea, so there was also that …

    And started watching The Tourist, yet another mad goings on in the outback show which must have the Australian Tourist Board grinding their teeth in frustration but there were lacings of humour and the lead is Jamie Dornan, so there is that …!

    Liked by 3 people

  11. I stood in a veerrrry long line outdoors to get a free Covid test, and am thus pretty sore today. My eyes stopped watering eventually but one of my sinuses would still like to register a complaint.

    The woman in front of me was a 20-something Karen who did everything but stomp her foot whining she HAD to get her test TODAY and she was just going to stand there till she did, and no she had not made an appointment on the web site and wasn’t about to. Line monitor lady just calmly repeated “nope”. Never mind half the people in line had been there the day before, with appointments, and it got cut off so they’d come back a second day. The woman in front of her had a few words in their native language. Karen pouted a while longer and finally huffed off. To be driven away by her daddy in one of those brand new giant lifted and vroomy pickup trucks. F her and the Uggs she rode in on. Probably got exposed at some bar on NYE. Have Daddy buy you a test, bitch.

    Apropos of Cam’s current tagline, an entire family had been standing in line for a while before finding out it was appointment only, and they huffed off back into their Tesla.

    None of these people were white. Entitlement is spreading as fast as Covid.

    Anyway, I’ll find out in 2-3 days and I got some fresh air.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Current COVID status: I started feeling sick on NYE, have done one self-test and one “official get to a test station”-test, both negative. GF’s son have been sick in the same timeframe and have also tested negative. Now GF is sick too and is waiting for her test result. Based on results I’ve heard from other families I wouldn’t be surprised if she tests positive for COVID even though all three most likely have the same virus.

    I’ve been staying with GF since before NYE – before I got sick. Lousy houseguest. Now I feel like going home but I’m still coughing and sniffling a little, and even with the negative tests I don’t want to do the long train journey with other passengers glaring at me. So I’m using her living room for a home office for now.

    I kind of miss when being sick was only about being sick, and didn’t include worrying about The Plague.

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  13. Results of long line and nose poking came back negative! Huzzah! I think it’s just been so damn long since I had a cold I freaked out, like Johan did.

    Either that or the test was so long after the symptoms (over a week) with such a low viral load that random parking lot swabs didn’t pick it up. However, Mr. LT and EGG have both felt fine the whole time.

    One side of my nose still occasionally wishes to register a complaint. I am reteaching EGG to catch treats instead of just waiting for them to drop.

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