April 23, 2022

Milwaukie Cafe and Bottle Shop, fitover eyeglasses - Hal Brown

 April 23, 2022

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Previous editions archive in right column

I was at the eye doctor in nearby Milwaukie buying Jonathan Paul fitover sun glasses. I saw similar glasses made by Cocoon advertised online and decided to replace my cheap clip-on sun blockers. These are best bought in-person since you can try them on, see how they look, and get advice from expert opticians like those at my local EyeHealth Northwest Optical Shop. (By the way, I am letting my beard grow out.)
These fit over prescription glasses. They come with a lanyard so you can hang them from your neck when not using them.

Since it was noon I thought I'd ask for a recommendation of a nearby restaurant and the opticians sad that the best place for lunch was the Milwaukie Cafe and Bottle Shop. 

It is located in an easy to miss small building while you are driving about a mile past Providence Milwaukie Hospital and my doctors office on SE 32nd Avenue. 

If you decide to go there watch for this store as it is right across the street and the restaurant (next to a dog grooming place) easy to miss:

Here's the menu, click below to enlarge, (which is also on their website here). The restaurant is open only for breakfast and lunch (hours 7:30AM to 2:30 PM).

Assuming you are coming from the direction of the hospital you won't see the mural until you park in the lot (which is in serious need of paving since there's a gaping pothole in it) across the street.

Here are some photos of the interior. Note the signs which show that the owners are progressive.
Click images to enlarge

The food was tasty and the staff was friendly. You order at the counter and a server brings the food to your table, which you bus for yourself. 

The opticians recommended the brisket which I planned to have but they were out of it so I ordered slow cooked pork shoulder with a fried egg on polenta. It was very good as was my companion's veggie bowl.

Below is the art on the wall which is for sale:

Quiz for the day

You don't have to be exact in identifying this to win. Can you tell basically what it is. Click photo to find out.

While on the subject of Jewish delis.....

April 22, 2022

Streaming video, Hal Brown

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April 22, 2022

In the previous blog edition I posted about politics (here)

I posted a version of this on Daily Kos here.

Some friends think that my life revolves around following the bad news (and often writing about it on Daily Kos, here) that seems to come fast and furious throughout the day. This blog (for those new to it check the archives on the sidebar) documents the ways I escape from being mired in depressing and anxiety provoking news. I take many trips into the countryside and eat at lots of different restaurants including old favorites and new places. Another way I spend my time is watching streaming video.

Currently I am watching two popular and long-running TV series which I viewed when the originally aired. I am watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer  (on Amazon Prime, Rotten Tomato reviews) and Nashville (read reviews) which unfortunately is on Hulu.

I say this is unfortunate because while I have had no problems at all with Amazon Prime or Netflix, Hulu goes offline every few days. It did this last night and even though I unplugged my devices and rebooted them several times a message kept appearing that the service was unavailable.

This morning I did a simple web search for "Hulu problems" and discovered that I was wasting my time trying to get the service to function. The graph below shows exactly when Hulu stopped working on my TV.  Here's DownDetector, the website that tracks in real time which services are having outages, and this shows the reason I couldn't continue to watch Nashville.

After repeatedly trying to get Hulu to function I gave up and watched a few episodes of Seinfeld on Netflix. This is my back-up escape into what I consider pure comedy genius and the best written and acted sitcom ever made. I remember very well the plots of many of them having watched when they aired, but it is a treat when I see one that I don't really recall all that well. I just watched Season Three, episode 15, The Fix-Up, and episode 16, The Suicide. Episode 17 which I am looking forward to seeing, is an hour long special, The Boyfriend which Jerry Seinfeld has said is his favorite. TV Guide ranked the episode fourth in their 1997 list of the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All Time. Fans will remember it as the one about former New York Mets baseball player Keith Hernandez who appeared as himself.

On a related subject, I watched or rather tried to watch Steven Spielberg's Westside Story. I managed to get through about 40 minutes before giving up. I found it uninspired and boring. Despite it getting 91% positive critics reviews and an audience score of 94% on Rotten Tomatoes I agree with the critics who didn't like it pretty much for the same reasons they gave, for example The new ‘West Side Story’ has all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. Here a critic asks whether Spielberg actually ruined Westside Story.

I also watched The Batman the other day and managed to get through the entire movie though I didn't think it was particularly good even though it got 86% and 87% positive Rotten Tomato ratings.

On another related matter, last week I didn't get my issue of Entertainment Weekly which I count on to alert me to shows I might want to watch. For example they publish articles about what is coming to Netflix in the coming months. Instead I received a copy of People with a card that said the printed edition of Entertainment Weekly had been suspended. The card said the rest of my subscription would shift to People. I looked it up here to find out why.

I find People to be a useless magazine usually printing frivolous and fawning articles often about celebrities I never heard of. Fortunately, Entertainment weekly is still publishing online here.

April 21, 2022

Just a few political observations, By Hal Brown

April 21, 2022

I posted a story to go with this on Daily Kos.

I missed seeing this photo of the Jan. 6th attempted coup. It is in the middle of this NY Times article. Click image to enlarge.

This goes with a Kos story 

April 20, 2022

Is this woman on something? Look at her eyes. Click below to play video.

April 19, 2022

No doubt you have seen the news that a Florida federal district judge, a Trump appointed judge who was rated as unqualified by the American Bar Association, undid the federal mask mandate for airline travel. Other businesses are following suit. I wrote about this on Daily Kos here. 

On a personal note:

Yesterday I received my second booster. I live in a senior community so everyone here is considered above average risk of complications from Covid. All 400 plus residents where I live have received their initial Covid vaccinations and their first booster. The majority got their second booster yesterday.

Waiting while the pharmacists set up t give the booster shots.

I had a 10 AM appointment and was the first to arrive getting there at 9:30. By the time I got my shot there were 50 or more people in the auditorium where the clinic was held. 

I wore my N-95 mask. The majority of people waiting weren’t wearing masks and were sitting right next to each other.  I see this as a kind of wishful thinking. These aren’t right-wing folks. Our senior community is not only well educated but the vast majority of residents are Democrats. This is, after all, a suburb of Portland, Oregon.

Even  though there was room for everyone to sit with an empty seat next to them, none of them with the except of myself, did so as far as I could tell. Of the four people sitting in front of me three were maskless. The man sitting next to me wore his mask.

Yesterday I documented my receiving my second Covid booster.

Check the archives on the right for photo essays about numerous car trips exploring areas from nearby to as far as 90 minutes from home.

April 19, 2022

Covid booster day by Hal Brown

 The Easter edition of my blog is chock-a-block with multifarious mishegas and much more (click here).

I will be getting my second Covid booster this morning. I don't know what, if anything, I will post here later. If you missed the Easter edition and want to see it click here. I was first on line to get my Covid booster since I arrived 40 minutes early. Fortunately the senior facility where I hang my hats had arranged to have a vaccination clinic here.

It was arranged for the Safeway pharmacy to give the boosters onsite. 350 residents signed up. All I had to do was walk through several buildings to get to the injectadtorium where I snagged the number one seat. Below are the photos of my walk. I hadn't been on the building for months.

A rainy day

Last minute preparation

Ten minutes to go and the pharmacy staff is getting ready to start at 10:00 AM sharp.

I had a chance to chat with friends some of whom I hadn't seen in nearly two years.

Then I got my shot which I barely felt. One the way back I admired the offerings in our marketplace but resisted buying any of the goodies baked in our kitchen. No wonder lots of new residents gain 20 pounds of more when they move here.
Then I went home....

April 17, 2022

Hal Brown's Easter blog

 Previous blog edition

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These greeting are from me and my Westies and a friendly snail. Easter Sunday was a perfect time for a picnic at Willamette Park in West Linn. The prime table from the last picnic on March 25th was available...

Unfortunately some vandals had defaced it by spray painting profane graffiti.

Then a ride into the hills of West Linn not only provided beautiful vistas but showed why the city can afford a park with three baseball fields with artificial turf diamonds.

Mt. Hood

If you have a spare $40 million or so you might be interested in a house like this:

If you can't swing $40 million or just don't "need" 50,000 square feet, for a mere $15 million you can get a home like this:


Yet another example of Trrump's psychological projection. He's the certifiable maniac, revenge obsessed malignant narcissist becoming ever more delusional. He's unhinged and has the judgement of a cliff leaping lemming.

Click to enlarge

Here's some trivia for TV viewers who, like me, are fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I am binge-watching it now.

Who is the character whose personalty (not powers) most resembles Donald Trump?

The answer diehard fans know is Glory, the near invulnerable god from Hell, who is trying to locate the mysterious powerful "key" which if she has her will enable her to destroy mankind. To protect it an order of ancient Byzantine monks transformed into human form as Buffy's sister Dawn who didn't even exist prior to Season Five. When she came on the scene she had memories of being there for as long as she could remember as did all the other characters.

This is Glory who has a cadre of troll-like sycophants to do her evil bidding who incessantly praise her. She is known as "Glorificus" or sometimes "Glorifius." She was also known as "the Glorious One" (among many other amusing, groveling titles such as "Her Splendiferousness," "Her Sparkling Luminescence" and "Oh Sweaty-Naughty-Feelings-Causing One").

Here are more from a fan website:

JINX I am in thunderous agreement, oh glittering, glistening Glorificus. 

MURK: Uh, begging your pardon, and begging in general, but ... were you talking to me? 
GLORY: Eww. Yeah, right. Like any of you have ever bathed, anyway. 
MURK: Oh, but we do, Your Scrumptiousness. We bathe in Your Splendiforous Radiance, Your Aromatic-

GLORY: (annoyed) He's getting stronger. I'm losing him, I'm losing control of him. 
JINX: You're speaking of Ben, Most Glamorous yet Tasteful One? 

MURK: We can do that, O ... thou. 

DREG:Forgive me, Shiny Special One. I beg of you to rip out my inadequate tongue.

DREG: No! No, no, Your Terrifically Smooth One, it is the epitome of ankles. 
To touch such an ankle would be - but I'm not touching. I'm backing away.

DREG: Yes. Dreg. Your Creamy Coolness has honored me by speaking my name. Your voice is like a thousand sweet songbirds that-
and I could go on and on but I will stop there..

I find the ways the minions bend over backwards to find new and more outlandishly over-the-top ways to praise her amusing and am reminded about reading reports like this of how people seeking Trump's endorsement and approval are told to make sure they go out of their way to stroke his massive ego.

Okay, enough politics...

At 6:15 AM I went outside and walked down the path across from my house and took these photos of the full Pink Moon.

"April's full moon will illuminate the sky this entire weekend, and while it's called the pink moon, it's not actually that color. The pink moon will appear full from early Friday to Monday morning, according to NASA. It will be at its peak fullness on Saturday, April 16, at 2:55 p.m. ET."  Read about it here.

On the bottom of this photo you can see the freight train which has stopped.

 On Language: Something to think about 

Whether to put the f-word spelled out in a headline is an editorial decision. After all, everyone will know what the word is no matter how many asterisks are between the first and the last letter. There's more how editors and writers deal with obscene and profane words as well as insults in articles.  Here's an article from Agente Presse France about how profanities and insults are translated so people who speak other languages can fully grasp the intended meaning.



“Son of a bitch”, “emmerder”, “grab 'em by the pussy”...  How exactly do you translate a swear word uttered by the French president or any other political figure, so that an American, Spanish or Argentinian reader really gets the gist? Similarly, how to translate a profanity said by an American president for the benefit of francophone readers? Every time a head of state uses an expletive, the result is instant head-scratching and intense debate in the newsroom, explains Sebastien Blanc, head of AFP's French editing desk in Washington, with the input from his English-, Spanish-, and Arabic-speaking colleagues.

The article concluded:

Has anyone forgotten the infamous video unearthed in 2016 where Donald Trump boasted he could grope women with impunity, including “grab 'em by the pussy”?

So misogynistic and crude was the sentence that AFP in French initially decided not to use it and merely described Trump as uttering “un mot très cru pour le sexe féminin” (a very crude word used to describe female genitalia).

But in an update on the story, the expression was translated literally into French. And it didn't end there, far from it. “Crooked Hillary”, “Crazy Bernie”, “Sleazebag”, “Slimeball”, “Horseface”... There was much head-scratching over the years.

Website recommendations for news and information

I rely on several websites to stay informed about news, information and opinion. I subscribe to The New York Times and The Washington Post. I also check out RawStory several times a day because they are the best website to follow breaking news reported elsewhere including on subscription websites, with summaries and links.

(RawStory is an American progressive news website and online tabloid. It was founded in 2004 by John K. Byrne and is owned by Byrne and Michael Rogers. Wikipedia)

They also have some excellent original articles, particularly by Tom Boggoini, Travis Getty, and David Caye Johnson.

Another website which I've been aware of since RawStory often republishes their articles in Agence France-Presse. For example the story

Endangered North Atlantic right whales make a stand in Cape Cod piqued my interest because I used to live near The Cape and spent a lot of time there and am concerned about the plight of whales.

Wikipedia tells us: Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French private international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

AFP has regional headquarters in NicosiaMontevideoHong Kong and Washington, D.C., and news bureaus in 151 countries in 201 locations. AFP transmits stories, videos, photos and graphics in FrenchEnglishArabicPortugueseSpanish, and German.

You can read stories from the website here:

Nixon and Kennedy were evenly matched intellectually in their first debate. Nixon lost because of how he looked on TV. Trump may lose because he "loses it" on TV. By Hal Brown, MSW

  Read: Team Biden bets an unfiltered Trump at the debate can shake up the race GOP pollster Frank Luntz said the June 27 faceoff will be &q...