Holidays on Ice- mstrust's #8
This is a continuation of the topic The Rocky Horror Pumpkin Show- mstrust's #7-Autumn & Halloween.
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That's right, I've jumped right from Halloween to Christmas. And picking up my theme again, this thread is inspired by the book Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris, which means I'll be referencing both Christmas and holiday cocktails. We may need a wall to slide down.
Hi, I'm Jennifer and I'm originally from Orange County, Ca., but I've lived in Phoenix for twenty years. I like books, sweets, cold weather and my husband Mike. And we have a darling boxer named Coral. As always, my threads are politics-free, but with enough snark to keep you warm like a scratchy sweater.
Books Read in 2019
1. Around the World in 80 Days- 4.5
2. Hemingway & Bailey's Bartending Guide- 4.2
3. My Family and Other Animals - 4 stars
4. The Death and Resurrection of Elvis Presley-3.5
5. My Friend Dahmer- 4 stars
6. The 7 Secrets of Awakening the Highly Effective Four-Hour Giant, Today- 3 stars
7. Blood on the Boards- 3.5
8. Lumberjanes: Sink or Swim- 2 stars
9. Book Towns- 4.2
10. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea- 4
11. Nothing More Than Murder- 3
12. John Dies at the End- 5- ScaredyKit Group
13. Soulless- 3.5- February ScaredyKit Group
14. The Walking Dead Cookbook- 4 stars
15. The Twisted Ones- 4 stars
16. Hollywood Said No!- 3 stars
17. The Widow Clicquot- 3 stars
18. Handwritten Recipes- 3 stars
19. A Year in the Merde- 4 stars
20. The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs- 4 stars
21. The Murder of Helen Jewett- 3 stars- ScaredyKit Group
22. The Twits- 5 stars
23. Diamonds Are Forever- 4.2 stars
24. The Red House Mystery- 2 stars
25. The Friends of Eddie Coyle- 4 stars
26. Hotbox- 4 stars
27. Home from the Vinyl Cafe- 3.5 stars
28. Intoxica!- 4.5 stars
29. Robert Kirkman's Descent- 3 stars
30. Al Capone Does My Shirts- 4 stars
31. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian- 4 stars
32. Mental Floss presents...Be Amazing-3.5 stars
33. Under the Glacier- 3 stars
34. The Art of Tiki- 5 stars
35. More Skipper Stories- 3 stars
36. My Life in Heavy Metal- 3.5 stars
37. The Book Of Lists London- 3.5 stars
38. Say Cheese and Die- 3.5 stars
39. Thirsty- 4.5 stars
40. A Head Full of Ghosts- 4.2 stars
41. Hail to the Chin- 4 stars
42. pReturn to Fear Street: Drop Dead Gorgeous- 4 stars
43. pGoosebumps Most Wanted: Planet of the Lawn Gnomes- 4 stars
44. Dear Boris: The Life of William Henry Pratt- 4 stars
45. Marco Polo: Canada West- 4 stars
46. Go, Mutants!- 4.2 stars
47. Harry's Bar- 3 stars
48. Guide to the National Parks of Canada- 3 stars
49. Blues of a Lifteime- 4 stars
50. The Hawaiian Lei: A Tradition of Aloha- 5 stars
51. Mucho Mojo- 4 stars
52. The Jaws Log- 4 stars
53. Fever: A Nameless Detective Novel- 3.5 stars
54. American on Purpose- 3.5 stars
55. Book Lust To Go- 4 stars
56. Tales From Beyond the Brain- 4 stars- July ScaredyKit
57. The Sharper Your Knife, The Less You Cry- 4 stars
58. AA Gill is Away- 4stars
59. Supernatural: Witch's Canyon- 4.2 stars- July ScaredyKit
60. Born on the Fourth of July- 4 stars
61. The Wounded and the Slain- 3 stars
62. Al Capone Shines My Shoes- 4 stars
63. The History of Rock in Fifty Guitars- 5 stars
64. Fireside Gothic- 4.5 stars- August ScaredyKit
65. Lemmy: The Definitive Biography- 5 stars
66. Junky- 4 stars
67. A Stab in the Dark- 4 stars
68. Elvis in Hawaii- 4.5 stars
69. Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison:The Making of a Masterpiece- 4 stars
70. Elevation- 3 stars
71. Contagious- 4 stars
72. Tales from The Haunted Mansion- 4 stars
73. Fear Street Nights: Midnight Games- 3 stars
74. From Here to Eternity- 4 stars
75. How I Got My Shrunken Head- 3.5 stars
76. Death and Douglas- 4.2 stars
77. DK Top 10 Vancouver & Vancouver Island- 4.5 stars
78. Goosebumps: Ghost Camp- 3 stars
79. A Night in the Lonesome October- 4 stars
80. Seasons of Connecticut- 4 stars
81. The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two- 4 stars
82. How to Survive a Horror Movie
83. Northwest Mountain Flowers- 4 stars
84. Annihilation- 4 stars
85. The Stand- 5 stars
86. Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant- 3 stars- ScaredyKit
87. Supernatural: Nevermore- 4.5 stars
88. Poe-Land- 5 stars
89. Attack of the Graveyard Ghouls- 4 stars- ScaredyKit
90. The Hollywood Book Club- 4 stars
91. The Squared Circle- 3.5 stars
What happened to thanksgiving? It's too soon for Christmas! Have you noticed that the space that once held Halloween candy is now full of Christmas candy? ARGHHH!
90. The Hollywood Book Club by Steven Rea. This is a LT ER win, published by Chronicle Books.
A book of old Hollywood stars interacting with books, all black and white photos with a paragraph about the actor or the circumstances in which the photo was taken. There's Joan Collins on set and in Western costume of 1958's The Bravados reading You Can't Go Home Again, Orson Welles lying on his couch in 1939 and reading A History of Technology, Vol. III: From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution, Sammy Davis Jr. reading The Robe on a patio lounger, and Alfred Hitchcock yawning as he flips through The World of Birds in a bookstore. The cover photo, included inside, is a 1951 shot of Marilyn Monroe reading The Poetry and Prose of Heinrich Heine. It's a nice collection of glamorous people and books. 4 stars
>3 RidgewayGirl: A complaint already?! I fully admit to jumping over Thanksgiving on my thread, but as I expect this to be my last of the year, and I've started my shopping, I'm talking Christmas.
Happy new thread, Jennifer!
The only reason I let you get away with such an early Chrismas thread is that I feel sad you don't have Sinterklaas in between Halloween and Christmas like we do ;-)
>8 harrygbutler: Hi, Harry, thanks!
>9 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita! We make do with three big holidays in a row, and they make the end of the year go super fast. Throw in our anniversary yesterday, vacation and a couple of birthdays and the last three months of the year are a non-stop sugar rush.
>10 quondame: Thanks Susan!
Happy new thread, Jennifer! It's ok by me that you skip Thanksgiving which is over already anyway (where I live). And Christmas is so much more fun.
Happy new thread, Jennifer!
Thank you for the Christmas reminder, now is the time to think about gifts, to prepare the texts for the Christmas greetings....
For the right mood a small handicraft work of a friend:
I'm in! I woke up this morning to find 1) it was 5am and not the 6am I'd planned on and 2) I'd slid down a wall sometime shortly after getting in last night. Imagine my surprise!
>13 VivienneR: Thanks, Vivienne! Though Thanksgiving is just about the best meal of the year, I've yet to hear a Thanksgiving song or receive a Thanksgiving present. Even when I'm doing all the cooking.
>14 SirThomas: Thank you, Thomas! What amazing craftsmanship!
And you're welcome for the reminder, as the end of the year tends to sneak up on us. Three days ago I bought my mom the new Longmire and a book of Texas history she wanted. Yesterday I bought my sister Elegy for Eddie from the series she likes. I also bought myself They Shoot Horses, Don't They? and ordered Twelve Nights At Rotter House, which came out a few days ago. Because I get presents too.
>15 SomeGuyInVirginia: Larry's in! Time change, huh? What's the point? Btw, that was me who left you the mug of warm peppermint schnapps by your head. I filled it from the "water bottle" you keep in your desk. You're welcome!
Ok, all you pro-Christmas types, I've gotten us all matching leather jackets. We're going to hang around the street corner by Santa's Village and throw cherry cordials when RidgewayGirl walks by. She'll smell delicious, and then she'll be sorry, ha!
>5 mstrust: It is your thread, but if I can find a reason to complain, I will probably do so. At length and in detail.
Oh my God, there were two mugs! I liked yours best because the other was full of NyQuil and Molly. But yeah, I drank both.
>17 RidgewayGirl:. Well if course you will, and that's why we love you!
I've just ordered lunch in. It's going to take FOREVER but in reality 45 mins, tops. Really, microwaves ruined my generation. Well, microwaves and Disney.
>17 RidgewayGirl: About my thread or life in general? I honestly can't tell if you're being cheeky or pissy. Please confirm.
>18 SomeGuyInVirginia: But did you find your car keys that I put in the bottom of the mug? I thought, "I'll bet he'll lose them if I don't put them somewhere safe." Do you like how they make your whole car smell like Christmas vomit?
>19 SomeGuyInVirginia: Did you enjoy your delivered lunch, Fancy Pants? 45 minutes is kinda a long time to wait, so I'm guessing you didn't get McDonald's. We went to Ruth's Chris the other night and our steaks had big chunks of mushy fat, and the fire roasted corn had big pieces of the cob in it.
I started The Gunslinger for the Stephen King & Family ScaredyKIT, but after 15 pages, I'm dropping it. I think the only fantasy I've gotten through is the Harry Potter books and Jasper Fford's, and I've never read a Western, though I intend to try Louis L'Amour someday. This may be the first King that hasn't sucked me in.
>20 mstrust: Probably whiney. But in no way pissy. Didn't you have a picture of an aqua tinsel tree and matching living room up last year? That was aspirational.
Ah, Whiney! The final member of mstrust's seven dwarves is in place.
I believe I did have a very cool aqua Christmas tree last year. If Mike ever became allergic to the real thing, I'd insist on a tinsel one. The lavender ones are beautiful and glow like they're radioactive.
It used to upset me when Thanksgiving got skipped, but now I know it's actually a clue that I need to start getting ready for Christmas now!
Happy Final Thread of 2019!
Ok. If you have an Alexa, tell it to play 'Radio station Amy Winehouse.'
No one as paranoid as I am owns an Alexa. It heard everything! Now you have to kill it!
I swear I am going to finish another book soon. I'm juggling just two, but got greedy and loaded a few more on my Kindle yesterday. I'm catching up on my murder podcasts, and back to hiking the preserve. We've almost finished the Christmas shopping for my side of the family (are you cussing at me?) and I'm making a list of the cookies I'll be making for the fourteen tins we'll give out this year. But I've put too little thought into Thanksgiving dinner so far.
Apparently, today is National Donut Day. We must comply.
Yes we must, those who come up against Big Doughnut find themselves buried in the Jersey pine barrens.
>29 mstrust: 🍩h! And my best local place was sold out by this time last year! They didn't know about
National Doughnut Day.
>30 SomeGuyInVirginia: There are credible rumors that they track whether you like raised or cake, iced or crumb...they're in your head, man.
>31 quondame: Did you hear about that college student who was driving to another state, buying 100 boxes of Krispy Kremes, then selling them at school for a profit? It got on the news and the next day Krispy Kreme corporate told him to stop.
>30 SomeGuyInVirginia: National Donut Day! My favorite are white cream doughnuts, but sadly there's no place particularly close that really delivers what I want, and I've pretty much stopped eating mediocre doughnuts, so I'll have to postpone the celebration. Perhaps this weekend.
Late last week I picked up a new glass for my whiskey sours. Here it is (not my photo; snagged from ebay):
Happy new thread! Nothing puts me in the holiday mood more than an aluminum Christmas tree and reflector lights. Thanks for setting the mood right :0)
>33 quondame: I don't see how they could. I think this was a matter of the student getting the story out, as it does make the corporation look bad to go after him.
>34 harrygbutler: Mike loves those cream filled ones too. It's like the thick frosting they put on birthday cakes. My favorites are the yeast chocolate or maple iced, or I like LeMar's cinnamon crumb a lot too.
A Don Ho shot glass! Fabulous!
>35 Carmenere: You are welcome! I especially like the Santa with the tomato red face, like he sucked down a bottle of bourbon.
Other books I've bought in the last few days: the autobiography of Debbie Harry,Face It and Mrs. Sherlock Holmes, the bio of Grace Humiston.
Gather around, children. Mother is going to read you a Christmas story from the Book of Leviticus.
There's got to be an interesting story behind it. Seems difficult to stand next to a Christmas tree and not smile. Unless maybe that dress was her present?
91. The Squared Circle: Life, Death, and Professional Wrestling by David Shoemaker. With the beginnings of what would be modern professional wrestling, as apposed to Greco-Roman Olympic-style, the author gives the history of sideshow wrestling and it's first headliners, then goes into the top acts, mostly from the 1940's to present day. But this isn't about wrestlers who were just famous, this is a book of dead wrestlers. The focus is on their lives and often too early deaths, often with a connection to their profession. Bruiser Brody was stabbed to death in the locker room, Owen Hart fell to his death while making an entrance to the ring, several wrestlers were found dead from a combination of painkillers and other drugs meant to mask the pain from years of ring work. The author also delves into the topics of misogyny and race in professional wrestling, and the constant fight between the various territories, which Vince McMahon pretty much wiped away.
Fond memories of the Wrestlemania era? You might like this, but it certainly delivers the surprising and often harsh reality of the business backstage. 3.5 stars
Happy new thread, Jennifer. I was happy to see that you finally got a copy of They Shoot Horses, Don't They as I often think of the copy I tried to send to you lying in a corner of some cold, dark post office somewhere.
>36 mstrust: I am old enough to remember wearing pant suits and teasing my hair into strange shapes - I now look back and it makes me think of Gary Oldman as Dracula:
Happy new thread, Jennifer. No complaints about skipping Thanksgiving here. It is over and done anyway and Christmas will be here before we know it!
>43 DeltaQueen50: I still think about that too. I hope that eventually it went to somebody and that they didn't just turn it into mulch. I'm still sorry I didn't receive your kind gift though.
Oh no, hopefully you didn't turn your head into a giant heart, ha! Although I've always admired the elderly ladies with really long hair who wrap it around like a danish pastry.
>44 Familyhistorian: Thanks! I'm about ready to break out the peppermint striped paper and start wrapping presents. And we've already received our Christmas tamales from a friend.
Just returned from Sprout's apple-fest. This is when they bring in so many varieties that they normally don't carry. I got Lucy-glo and Lucy Rose, Autumn Glory, Sugarbee, Smitten, McIntosh, and a couple other varieties. I tend to go nuts when this finally happens.
Go get you own.
My first apple dish was the roast chicken I made last night, which is my favorite cold weather meal. I happened to have fresh rosemary and sage, so a couple of chopped apples, Delicata squash, zucchini, red potatoes, raisins and onions. I forgot to add the garlic but it still turned out edible. I usually use diced sweet potatoes but I wanted to see how the squash would do.
But seeing how I ate three apples plain and used two more in the roast, I don't know how long my greedy haul will last. I'm most likely to make an apple cake or baked cinnamon apples. And we also have a two jugs of apple cider in the fridge, so I might have to make cocktails. Oh, twist my arm...
Apples are like nature's perfect food. Or maybe, they're like charcoal - that go with everything. Having spent a lot of time in Virginia's Shenandoah valley I can tell you unequivocally that I absolutely adore apples.
Apples seem like they would go so well with chicken and pork. Has anyone else thought of this or should I trademark it? Asking for a friend.
I'm waiting on Vietnamese food delivery. Not because I'm Mr. Fancy pants, but because I'm way too f****** hung over to cook for myself and that includes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Or enjoy anything that I even see in my refrigerator. I love being hungover on Sunday mornings. Maybe that's why I love brunch, as an ideal to be striven after.
Somebody say something interesting while I wait for the doorbell to ring. Yes I do like the way Judy Garland sings, why do you ask? (Actual brunch question I was faced with.)
>49 SomeGuyInVirginia: From the apple in the suckling pigs mouth, to the apple sauce with pork chops, the affinity is well known and celebrated. Cooking pork on a bed of apples or putting apples in the pan under the rotisserie was a done thing in my birth household, depending on the available technology at the time.
I hope the Vietnamese food pampers your hangover.
>49 SomeGuyInVirginia: Apples do go with everything. Even when I think something like "apples don't go with chocolate," I am reminded that chocolate covered apples are prett great. But they go so well with chicken and sage, mm-mmm!
Apples and pork- crazy talk! But Mike has never eaten pork chops or pork loin without applesauce on top. Perhaps you could put a new and disgusting spin on it, like pork and caramel apples?
Sorry I wasn't around to sympathize with your hangover, but we've been out all day. Did some pho make you feel better? Today was spent taking Coral for her run in the park, then Christmas shopping, lunch, and Mike happened to call his aunt in Vermont yesterday and it was "thanks for calling on my birthday!" So we went and bought her some Native American earrings and local foods because she loves the Southwest. She'll have a birthday box. Oh, and I went next door a while ago and had a confrontation with the neighbors about them turning on not one, but two Harleys in their driveway and just letting them rev and shake our windows. Fun day, and I got a ginger cookie!
Oh, and just try and find someone who doesn't like Judy Garland. You can't.
>51 mstrust: Congratulations for taking on the biker gang! That's so badass.
Ha! They sort of are, as there seems to be an endless supply of hillbilly giants with Harleys who show up to visit or move in for a month, or a year. Somehow these people have $250,000 in vehicles, motorcycles and everything else with an engine crammed on their property, and they use it all. I have a reason to hate ;-)
>50 quondame: My Vietnamese food just 'Tiger Mom'ed me. "You're just lazy! You think you've got a hangover? You're brother has a real hangover and he's put in 12 hours already driving Uber. I swear I should just start hiding money around the house because tearing the place apart looking for a $20 after I'm dead is the only thing you're qualified to do." And much more in a similar vein.
Which is why I took the ok Vietnamese food on the balcony with a Bloody Mary and a phone list of People With Whom I Have a Grievance. (OK, not really. About the phone thing. I did sit on the balcony and make calls while I propped a foot against the door because it doesn't latch from the balcony and it would be a really Bad Day if Parker forced it open we we learned that he can't fly. I love that cat. He has a very small brain. Right now while I shave every morning he sits on the bathroom sink eyeing the top of the shower stall with a 'Hold my beer' speculative look.)
>51 mstrust: Oh god, so sorry about the noisy neighbors. Did it work? Is that the first time you've been over? Do you think you could empty a box of scorpions in an open kitchen window? I've had noisy neighbors in the past and, personally, the only thing that I've found that works is calling the police and filing a complaint.
They moved in almost five years ago...pretty much anything you can think of that you wouldn't want next door, they've done it. But their behavior has improved vastly over this past year since Mike went over and spoke to the man, and if you can believe it, they don't seem to be doing anything with the intention of being annoying, they're just really loud buffoons who are oblivious to the amount of noise they make.
I know the problem is also with the property itself, as it's a huge corner lot with a second house, which is zoned as a workshop but he's got people living in it, and a pool. It's one of those places that realtors advertise with "enough space for all your toys!!!" so that's who buys it.
This morning I made espresso chocolate wafers and sandwiched them with chocolate mint buttercream. I'm deciding what I'll make for the Christmas tins.
After hell becomes full and the dead rise to feast on the living, I'm really looking forward to moving into one of those large, QUIET, colonial mansions along the waterfront in old Town Alexandria. I call dibs!
>55 SomeGuyInVirginia: Losing pets from the patio would be unfortunate. The first day a new house keeper came she trapped herself in our patio until we came home because the door defaulted to locked. Fortunately, she came back and took care of our house weekly for almost 20 years, with a few interruptions. You've really got to be cautious with sliding doors. Though you didn't say you were dealing with a slider, did you?
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