A Heady Mix

by chuckofish

of Spring and socializing we have experienced this week, starting with boy #2’s graduation from his north country university

proud papa bestows the diploma as the president looks on

proud papa bestows the diploma as the president claps appreciatively


And afterwards

brothers and a favorite prof

brothers and a favorite prof




enter 3rd robber

enter 3rd robber








Woohoo! The day was perfectly beautiful and even our yard looked nice.

Note the visible line in the foreground where our neighbors perfect grass starts

Note the visible line in the right foreground where our neighbor’s perfect grass starts

Yes, we have forget-me-nots growing randomly in our yard and the grass weeds need cutting, but the cherry tree looks pretty and everything is so, so green!

After the graduate moved home,  his big brother flew back to the big city to work, and the little brother finally did his laundry, we  started to settle into our summer routine but not before I went to see Godzilla with my recently retired friend and fellow flyover state native, Lou Ann.  The movie was intense, but it lacked the charm and humor of the classic films. It was a lot more like this

a natural disaster -- so menacing

a natural disaster — so menacing

than this

The real Godzilla

The real Godzilla — a guy in a monster suit

Overall, however, I enjoyed it. As one of my boys said, it had most of the flaws of the classic movies: a weak script; poor character development (in the humans); and  predictability. On the plus side, the monster fights were great — Godzilla killed one enemy with his thermonuclear death breath — and they played up the “Godzilla saves the planet from bad creatures” angle, although because Godzilla is himself a dumb monster, he just doesn’t have any spatial awareness and so mindlessly crushes cities and people. C’est la vie.

On Wednesday we attended the faculty/staff picnic at SLU, where we imbibed free booze, ate bad food,  enjoyed the company of colleagues (parents of one of our son’s best friends and some of the only people on campus we could mention attending church to), and ogled the myriad tiny, adorable children running about. Alas, I took no pictures, but I did acquire multiple mosquito bites  to remember the event.

When I was not being a social butterfly I (re)read John Buchan’s Huntingtower, first published in 1922.


What a delight! I was only slightly chagrined to discover that the main character, the retired Glasgow grocer, Dickson McCunn, and I are the same age. He’s supposed to be almost too old for adventure! Sigh. Anyway, if you haven’t read this book, you should. In addition to Dickson, it has some of my other favorite characters ever, including the Gorbals Die-Hards, Dougal, Wee Jaikie, and Thomas Yownie (“ye’ll no’ fickle Thomas Yownie”). I was also struck by the fact that some things never change.  Take, for instance, what Dickson says in answer to the callow, oh-so-certain and liberal youth, Heritage, who has just been lecturing him on the merits of the proletariat:

See here, then. Your’e daft about the working-class and have no use for any other. But what in the name of goodness do you know about working-men? …I come out of them myself, and have lived next door to them all my days. Take them one way and another, they’re a decent sort, good and bad like the rest of us. But there’s a wheen daft folk that would set them up as models — close to truth and reality, says you. It’s sheer ignorance, for you’re about as well acquainted with the working-man as with King Solomon. You say I make up fine stories about tinklers and sailor-men because I know nothing about them. That’s maybe true. But you’re at the same job yourself. You idealize the working-man, you and your kind because you’re ignorant. You say that he’s seeking for truth, when he’s only looking for a drink and a rise in wages. You tell me he’s near reality, but I tell you that his notion of reality is often just a short working day and looking on at a footba’ match on Saturday…And when you run down what you call the middle-classes that do three quarters of the world’s work and keep the machine going and the working-man in a job, then I tell you you’re talking havers. Havers!

Too bad our politicians don’t share Dickson’s appreciation of the bourgeoisie. Ah, well, it did me good to read the book and I am looking forward to revisiting the sequel, Castle Gay, which begins with the best descriptions of a rugby game ever — as Wee Jaikie makes an epic run on the wing.

Have a great weekend, whether you’re watching monster fights, reading, or enjoying the beautiful weather!