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Poem for Tuesday, Tulip Fever, Green Spring Gardens [Mar. 13th, 2018|12:18 am]
2 A.M. )

Not an eventful Monday, just editing and laundry and uploading the photos I never got to last night while working on the Shutterfly book -- of course Shutterfly extended the coupon a day, but if I'd counted on them to do that, I'm sure they wouldn't have and I'd have had to wait till I had another free coupon to print the book I worked on for so long! It was chilly but nice out compared to south of us, where a bunch of snow fell; we had a tiny bit of precipitation but not even sleet, so after hanging out with Maddy at lunch and driving her to work, I went to the park, enjoyed the fresh air, and raided Rayquaza with friends.

After learning that Maryland had only received a fifth seed in the NCAA women's tournament, which is awfully low (at least they get to beat Princeton), we watched Tulip Fever, which has a great cast -- Alicia Vikander, Judi Dench, Christoph Waltz, Holliday Grainger -- but couldn't decide whether it wanted to be historical, contemporary, witty, or dramatic so felt rather uneven, though it was gorgeous to look at. Then we caught up on Blindspot, which was completely brilliant -- Groundhog Day meets The Breakfast Club by way of the sadly now canceled Limitless! From Green Spring Gardens yesterday, an overview:

Green Spring Gardens )
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Greetings from Green Spring Gardens [Mar. 12th, 2018|12:37 am]
Extreme quickie as I had a Shutterfly coupon expiring at midnight and spent all evening working on a photo book; I half-watched Timeless, which I'm delighted to have back, but don't quiz me on details. We watched Penn secure a spot in the NCAA tournament early in the day, then went to Green Spring Gardens, where the turtles were in hiding on this cooler afternoon but the geese and many flowers were in evidence, then we came home and watched the NCAA selection show during which both our aforementioned alma mater and UMBC got pretty much impossible first round games. Here is one photo from the gardens:

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Poem for Sunday, Brookside Spring, Justice League [Mar. 11th, 2018|12:44 am]
Batman )

It was a really gorgeous day on Saturday, which I hate to gloat about considering how many people are still digging out from snow and there may even be snow south of us tomorrow night. But it wasn't very cold and there was very little wind, so after a bunch of morning chores, we went to Brookside Gardens, where the geese and ducks are pairing off and the turtles come out to enjoy the sun. We saw daffodils, asters, crocuses, snowdrops, lenten roses, and the first apricot blossoms outside, plus a bunch of more exotic flowers inside the conservatory, and we drove around the athletic fields to the indoor sports facility we'd never seen before.

After dinner, we watched Justice League, which is now streaming and we somehow missed it in the theaters. I liked it better than Batman v. Superman, though not by much -- it had a couple of better actors but it also had at least four more fight scenes, and not even loving the Amazons made me want to see one more battle involving them. My favorite moments were throwaways like the Metropolis Daily News headline, "Did they return to their planet?" over photos of Superman, David Bowie, and Prince. The Flash was too snarky yet not funny enough. Diana and Arthur are both great, but there's too much Batmansplaining and too little believable human emotion.

Spring on the Way )
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Poem for Saturday and Art Cats [Mar. 10th, 2018|12:14 am]
Sorcery )

I had lots of dumb chores to do on Friday, so most of my day was unexciting, though I stopped at the mall to get my mother a birthday card and wound up doing a Rayquaza raid with a mother and adult daughter from Wheaton, new to the game, who were looking forlornly for someone to join them (I caught Rayquaza with no help, so it was all good, and I caught a very high level wild Blastoise right near the mall so that was fun!). Also, I got a free Blu-Ray copy of Thor: Ragnarok because the special edition Target shipped me had the exclusive little book glued into its pocket so that the pocket had to be damaged to remove it, and since they're sold out and couldn't ship a new one with the book, they gave me a refund instead.

It was my mother's birthday, so we picked up my parents at their house, then picked up Adam from his apartment and went to Kapnos in College Park. The food is exceptional -- we shared tyrokaftari, melitzanosalata, dolmades, maroulosalata, saganaki, kolokithokeftedes, plus the meat eaters had lamb and chicken, then we also shared baklava, chocolate mousse, and some kind of crumbly apple cobbler with ice cream -- and it's nice to have new restaurants in College Park! After we dropped off Adam and then my parents, we came home and watched Agents of SHIELD (so much better this season). Here are some photos from Richmond of the VMFA's recent exhibit of Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen cats through Nouveau, Deco, and Modernist phases:

Steinlen Cats )
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Poem for Friday, Richmond Orchids, Bones [Mar. 9th, 2018|12:16 am]
Preface of the Orchid Pavilion )

While my friends in the north were waiting for their power to come back on and their lawns to be cleared, I got to see some spring on Thursday! There are now plum blossoms in the park along with the crocuses and snowdrops, and there are a couple of lawns on my street with blooming daffodils, though ours are still tightly curled yellow-tipped buds. Maddy returned from California, though I barely saw her -- she dropped off her things, showered, and went out with friends. As a reminder that spring is coming, here are orchids at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond from last March:

Some Spring )

We spent the evening watching the final three episodes of Bones, which I am quite sad to have finished, as it remained enjoyable through its entire 12-season run, and very glad I watched the era of binge-watching, since I have no idea whether I'd have felt it jumped the shark at various points if I didn't know it ended well. Favorite lines from the last episodes included the discussion of writing a dissertation on the effects of gamma transformation on the Hulk's bones and Booth's declaring, "We're way better than Mulder and Scully" which Brennan responded, "I don't know what that means."
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Poem for Thursday and Colorful Art [Mar. 8th, 2018|12:08 am]
Spiral )

Though we were warned to expect bad weather, the storm currently making people north of us miserable only barely skirted the region here, meaning that it was chilly and overcast but we got little rain and only a few flurries here and there. I got to enjoy the park and get some shopping done, though it was a fairly quiet day mostly about chores and getting work done. We watched this week's not-good X-Files with its bad cliches about witchcraft and too many dead children, and Designated Survivor which had a much more interesting story than the preview suggested.

I never got the bed made because there were two cats on it when I got up, soon joined by a third who refused to move until the afternoon. Here are some more special exhibits from the Baltimore Museum of Art: Spiral Play: Loving in the '80s, a display of late African-American artist Al Loving's three-dimensional rag-paper collages using spirals to signify the continuity of life, and The Succession of Nature, a full-room exhibit by Baltimore's own Phaan Howng in collaboration with Blue Water Baltimore using the colors of toxic waste to show how pollution damages local waterways.

Spirals and Swirls )
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Poem for Wednesday and Baltimore Museum Modernism [Mar. 7th, 2018|12:43 am]
How Can You Be Modest )

My Tuesday was mostly boring -- writing and laundry -- though I took a walk in the crocus-covered park and made jewelry out of beads I got from someone's destashing. Our evening involved this week's The Flash and Black Lightning plus catching up on email and Facebook comments.

I am running late on everything today, so here is art from the Baltimore Museum of Art's modern and contemporary wing, including Warhol's The Last Supper, Magritte's Delusions of Grandeur, Whitten's 9/11, Picabia's Reverence, and Franz West's nutty Violetta and Swimmer:

Abstract and Surreal )
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Poem for Tuesday and Saraceno Sculpture [Mar. 6th, 2018|12:08 am]
Never )

Cheryl stayed after the Oscars so we could see The Shape of Water together, which we did, and it is a glorious film, beautifully imagined and allegorical without being heavy-handed about magic and monsters (I had read several debates about what it says about differently-abled people, and felt that it was more concerned with pointing out that we can't choose our abilities and can't always control our positions in life but we can choose who we love, how we treat people, and what we dream is possible). She had not seen Get Out, so we watched that too; it's a movie that only gets better on repeated viewings, which is a test of greatness that it passes with flying colors.

We had Elevation Burgers for lunch and took a walk to see bunnies (two spotted) before Cheryl had to go home. Paul and I watched two final season Bones episodes (awww Max). From the Baltimore Museum of Art on Sunday, here are the exhibits from Entangled Orbits by Tomás Saraceno, including "Flying Garden/Air Port City" using transparent film, iridescent foil, webbing, and rope to make a sphere that covers an entire gallery; "Zonal Harmonic" using rope, thread, and fishing line to create astronomical images; "Hybrid solitary semi social" preserving three different types of spider web structures; and the titular exhibit covering the East Lobby with iridescent clouds.

Strung Spiderwebs )
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Greetings from Baltimore [Mar. 5th, 2018|12:01 am]
I spent Sunday afternoon with Paul and Cheryl at the Baltimore Museum of Art, having brunch at Gertrude's and seeing pretty much every exhibit in the museum, including the special exhibits Moon Dust by Spencer Finch, a light display representing the chemical representation of moon dust; Counterparts by Njideka Akunyili Crosby, a Genius fellow portraying her experience moving to the United States from Nigeria; and the glorious Entangled Orbits by Tomás Saraceno, who uses string spider webs and iridescent pieces to create indoor clouds.

Baltimore Art )

The evening of course has been about the Oscars. We all wanted Helen Mirren, not the jet ski. We agreed that supporting actor and actress were predictable but Janney was utterly brilliant in I, Tonya so I'll let it slide that Rockwell went home with an Oscar for playing a darker, more racist riff on what he often plays. I love the Sufjan Stevens song from Call Me By Your Name and I REALLY like his jacket, but I thought he'd be losing to "This Is Me" and I'd be happy rather than to Frozen I mean Coco so meh. I am SO happy Jordan Peele won the screenplay award (and James Ivory for the other one)! I thought The Shape of Water was beautifully directed and I love del Toro, so that was fine, though it would have been all right with me if Peele won that one and Best Picture too.
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Poem for Sunday and Post-Storm Woods [Mar. 4th, 2018|12:30 am]
After the Storm )

We woke to emails about more road closures and texts from friends who had no power overnight, including Alice and her family, so we tried to make lunch plans but ended up concluding that with all the detours, it would eat more of the day than her family had available. So we ate at home and went to Locust Grove to hike, but the main trail had two huge trees down across it.

Then Adam texted to tell us that he had gone kayaking on the Potomac River, but had left his water shoes at our house, and when he discovered how difficult it was to paddle upriver, he got out to walk and concluded that he might have a four-mile shoeless hike carrying a kayak. So we left Cabin John Park and went to meet him at Lock 10 to take him back to his car at Old Angler's Inn.

After the Storm )

Adam was hungry after his kayaking and had mail waiting at our house, so we persuaded him to come for pizza and a viewing of Get Out, which he had not seen, before he headed back to College Park, which is also full of downed trees that made biking difficult. After he left, we put on women's basketball and I tried to catch up on computer stuff before SNL with Charles Barkley.
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