by the time I got to my office on Friday -- delayed by interviewing people and exploring the library for a good window to take pictures of the H.U.B. lawn littered with gravestones -- I was ready to leave. The plan for the later part of the day involved a period of sitting on a lawn to watch a movie and I didn't come prepared with appropriate seating accessories. This was remedied with a quick trip to R.E.I., where a wide selection of camping chairs awaited purchase. As usual, no trip to the co-op is complete without a minor upgrade above the expected product. My new camping chair turns into a backpack and includes a tiny pillow. America, Fuck Yeah!
Drinks at Tango were followed by a trip to the South Lake Union "Block Party". As predicted, it was something of a sales experience, with the neighborhood "restaurants" handing out free samples of tacos or meat products to convince people that the neighborhood is [going to be ] a keen place to buy a condominium. On the upside -- free stuff! It was kind of like Halloween, with little bags to fill with candy, squirt guns, branded frisbees, bubbles [excellent water pistol targets], and even more candy. All the better for movie-watching. Aqueduct played for about an hour to a relatively small crowd, mostly because much of their demographic was hanging out behind a fence in the beer garden. Per usual, a few local celebrities were spotted in the crowd. Later, we engaged in a few rounds of "gay bingo", which didn't seem particularly part of the homosexual agenda. I suppose you don't get those parts unless you're paying the big money on a certain ordinal day of the month. The oddest part was how none of the winning combinations required any of the numbers in the "N" column.
The movie was Napolean Dynamite, which I'd obviously seen before. But only once [not enough to win any of the pre-show trivia contests]. For many attendees, a key activity of watching it seemed to be taking flash photography of the screen. Evidently, screen shots aren't as plentiful as I might have guessed. Anyway, funny. Even though there are maybe three scenes that sincerely work on any sort of emotional level. Aside from the benefit of being kind of freezing while watching, the other upfall of the outdoor movie was that we were around long enough to catch the extra-secret [?] bonus scene after the credits.
A barbecue at Alki for Pam's graduation with a fair number of biostatisticians and plenty of nice weather. Also cake. Even though there's not really much in the way of sand, the neighborhood still has a beach towny feel, which made it a nice little summer afternoon escape.
Later, Carole and I took off to see Little Miss Sunshine. It turned out to be my favorite kind of movie -- a near ideal maximization of funny, melancholy, and pretty [probably in that order. with a slightly different order, you get the Royal Tenenbaums]. By pretty, I don't (necessarily) mean the actors, but just generally nice to look at: the scenes of the little yellow VW bus riding across the big open desert highway never get old. Nor do the [yes] quirky characters or the sight and sound gags surrounding the decrepit van.
Reading a couple reviews, I learned that the director also made a commercial for the Volkswagen Cabrio in the late 90s. I'm sure that fans of Nick Drake probably couldn't bring themselves to like it, but I remember thinking that it was completely lovely. Driving out in the country and skipping a party never looked so good. [youtube]
all the usual watching, reading, working, shopping you've come to know and love. I didn't really get as much into Icelander [$] as I'd hoped. I bought it last Thursday after the metroblogging thing at the Owl 'n Thistle. The packaging, while not at all showy, is just as great as you'd expect from McSweeney's. Aside from the really nice drawing on the metal-embedded [?] front cover, there's no annoying dust jacket, and the size is just about perfect for holding in your hands while reading.