Tuesday, January 29, 2013



What am I passionate about today?  Nothing, really.  Nor was I passionate yesterday, so I didn't write anything original on my blog.  I posted a joke from my good friend Paul (A.), and I reached for the bottom to celebrate the 200th birthday of Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen's chef-d'oeuvre, by quoting myself, surely the nadir in blogging creativity.   Nor was I passionate on the day before.  I wanted to be entertained and amused, rather than offer entertainment and amusement.  So what did I do with all the free time on Sunday?  I attended the annual church meeting and the service that followed and did a little shopping for a few necessities on the way home.

When I returned home, I put my up my feet and finished the book I was reading, The Soldier's Wife by Joanna Trollope, light fiction which I need from time to time to clear my brain.  Next up were three episodes of the TV series Treme on DVD, which I'm receiving in sequence from Netflix and watching for the first time, because we do not subscribe to HBO.  I'm loving the series.  The creators and actors in the show get New Orleans as right as any show or movie I've seen, and I've seen my share of attempts that were excruciatingly awful.  I find myself jotting down some of the best dialogue from the show and whatever else looks good and funny.  Caution: Strong language.

LaDonna Batiste-Williams, on the refusal by her musician brother, Delmond Lambreaux, who has moved to NYC, to stay in New Orleans for a while to help their father, Albert, a Mardi Gras Indian chief, whose home has been destroyed:

Delmond: "I got a gig."

LaDonna: "We all got a gig.  That's goddam life."

Creighton Bernette, a professor of English at Tulane University speaking with a reporter in th days following the disaster:

Reporter: For the sake of argument, let's say New Orleans was, once, a great city...

Creighton: Are you saying that New Orleans is not a great city, a city that lives in the imagination of the world?

Reporter: I suppose if you're a fan of the music, which has rather seen it's day, let's be honest. Or the food, a provincial cuisine which many would say is typically American: too fat; too rich. And, yes of course, New Orleans has its advocates, but what about the rest of the country?

Creighton: Provincial, passé, hate the food, hate the music, hate the city. What the fuck are you doin' down here you fuckin' limey vulture motherfucker?

Creighton: "This ain't Lake Wobegone, goddamit!"

Themes for some of the floats in the Krewe de Vieux parade as shown in the show during the first Mardi Gras following Katrina and the federal flood:

"C'est Levee!"

"Buy us back, Chirac!"

"Mandatory Ejaculation"

"France, please buy us back!" was an oft-heard expression of disgust and frustration at the efforts of all levels of government in the aftermath of Katrina and the federal flood. 

Close on the heels of Treme came Downton Abbey, which I remembered to watch, unlike the previous Sunday, when I had to wait for the replay on Monday and watch on the computer.  If you've watched both TV shows, you know what a mind-bending adjustment is required for the transition.  If you haven't, then you'll have to take my word for it.

Spoiler alert!  Do not read further if you haven't watched the episode and want to watch later. The death of Sybil, the sweetest of the three Grantham daughters, was very sad and perhaps unnecessary.  When the time drew near for Sibyl to deliver, Lord Grantham insisted on calling the "town" doctor, Sir Philip Tapsell, rather than have the kindly local Dr Clarkson attend the birth, because he wanted the best for his daughter, I knew there would be trouble.  And Lady Grantham wished to heed the advice of good Dr Clarkson, which, if followed, might have saved Sybil's life.  Alas.

Bates' story is being drawn out to the point of tedium.  If suspense over Bates' fate is intended to keep us interested in watching Downton Abbey, then the effect on me is the opposite.  Please get on with the story. 

Passion comes, and passion goes.  Before too very long, I assume some bit of news of the stupidity of people in high places will come along and rouse my passion once again.

Cartoon from someecards.


Ciss B said...

I haven't had much time online either since I've taken a few part time jobs so I understand the lack of interest in blogging because I am too tired TO be creative. In fact if I am honest, I'm more than a bit tired for almost anything these days! :-)

I enjoyed your entry even if it wasn't from you!! Blessings!

Grandmère Mimi said...

Ciss, the cartoon is not quite true to life, as my efforts at housekeeping were not so great as to result in a surprise reaction from Tom.

My goodness! I note that you haven't written a post in nearly a month.

it's margaret said...

Sybil's death was almost rote, and therefor disappointing... it will be interesting to see who grabs her baby --Joel and I have bets going on the father kidnapping the baby and making a run with her back to Ireland or the lonesome newly weds claiming her because they are trying, unsuccessfully to have an 'heir'....

The corruption in the prison will kill Bates just as he is cleared and prepared to leave... what say?

And I look forward to searching for Treme!

May blessings abound in every bit of your duldrum, Grandmere... !!!

Grandmère Mimi said...

The death was totally foreseeable once Sir Doctor was called in. Conflict should come as a bit of a surprise.

I think you and Joel have both have a chance to win the bet. The possibilities for the development of the story of the baby could go either way or perhaps both ways...the newlyweds claiming the baby and Branson subsequently kidnapping the little girl.

Do watch at least one DVD of Treme and let me know what you think.

These duldrums, too, shall pass, and thanks for the blessing. Actually, I enjoyed Sunday, lazily lolling around being entertained.

Ann said...

I'm thinking Edith gets dibs on the baby.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Now that would be an interesting twist to the story. Does Edith want a baby at this point in her life?

Grandmère Mimi said...

I hope Bates doesn't die, because I like him as a character, but the writers have got to get him out of prison and move his story along some other way.

JCF said...

I was crushed by the death of Lady Sybil: not only the nicest, bravest and *best* sister . . . but also My Main Squeeze (Jessica Brown Findlay: Drool, *THUD*!)

I kept thinking they wouldn't go there (I mean, Lady Cora pulled through the Spanish Flu, right?), but the casting of Tim Piggott-Smith as the snooty doctor was ominous [I'm sure you remember TP-S, Mimi: his star-making turn as the racist, sadistic pedophile (yet complicated) colonial sargeant in The Jewel in the Crown?]

I'll keep watching DA . . . but the Light has gone out for me. RIP, Lady Sybil. :-(..

[Here follows . . . or fellowes my anti-Popoid rant (disclaimer---tune out if you want).

Julian Fellowes, the auteur of DA, is a Catholic convert. His wife is a prominent *conservative* Tory (as not all Conservatives count as conservatives, of course!)

Apropos of absolutely NOTHING, in the previous episode, they had Lord Grantham pop off some slimey 1920s anti-Popery (to the ABY, no less!).

Was MY LADY SYBIL <3<3<3 killed off *simply* to set up this "What shall we baptize the baby as?" fracas between Tom (Lady Cora, etc) and His Lordship? (To make "the Anglican" look all horrid, and the Irish Catholic all noble and victimized?)

I am suspicious AND pissed off! >:-( ]

Tim Chesterton said...

No, JCF, your Lady Sybil was killed off because the actor wanted to leave the show.

Laurel Massé said...

I am happy to know that you approve of Treme's portrayal of New Orleans. Its depiction of musicians and their lives is also spot-on accurate. I am a professional singer, as you know, Mimi, and over the years I have been saddened by, and grown used to, filmmakers getting it - us! - wrong. But Treme not only gets it entirely right, but more right than I've ever seen on television or in a movie.
It's brilliant.

Blessings, Laurel

it's margaret said...


Grandmère Mimi said...

JCF, I'm sorry for your loss. I must agree with you about Tim Pigott-Smith. I've never forgotten the smarmy character he played in The Jewel in the Crown. I'm afraid he was type-cast forever for me by that role, and I knew he would not be the good guy against the kindly local doctor.

susan s. said...

The minute I saw Tim Pigott-Smith in the Sir Doctor roll, I knew it was curtains for Sybil. Well, that and possible "Pre-eclampsia." That was no respector of class back then.

Grandmère Mimi said...

I did not know that Sybil died because the actor wanted to leave the show. With long-running shows, I suppose the writers must make adjustments when actors want to move on, and what else but death if they won't be back on the show?

Grandmère Mimi said...

Laurel, I'm so pleased to have a musician weigh in, because so much of the show is about music and musicians. Yes, the show is brilliant.

Grandmère Mimi said...

As I said below to JCF, I knew something bad would happen when Pigott-Smith came on the scene.

Paul said...

Loved, loved, loved the response to the reporter.

If passion is low think of it as a fallow period as you regroup for future adventures.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Paul, that was my favorite. I couldn't believe I was actually sending myself text messages on my phone quoting the dialogue.

My Sunday was most enjoyable...an afternoon and evening of complete self-indulgence.

Cathy said...

I have seen Tim Piggott-Smith play Henry Higgins to Michelle Dockery's Eliza Doolittle in Pygmalion. She was extremely good. He was too old, really, and not fanciable enough. HH needs to be crusty but attractive (I think).

I haven't seen the episodes you describe but Julian Fellowes has always made me uncomfortable as a scriptwriter by plugging his own values in precisely the way JCF describes so I wouldn't be surprised if JCF was right.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Cathy, to me, the series is high-class soap opera. I watch to relax and zone out, and I don't take the story too much to heart, so I'm not looking for an agenda.

I most certainly would not wish to see Pigott-Smith play Henry Higgens.

Anonymous said...

Just saying, perhaps if you found something you were passionate about, you wouldn't have to spend so much of your time mocking and ridiculing Cardinal Burke and the vestments he chooses to wear for various liturgical celebrations. You declare you are not obsessed with this topic, but my dear, the time and space you have devoted speak otherwise! Not kind or Christian behaviour. Sad, really. Perhaps you could spend more time praying or doing good deeds. You might even become passionate about those activities.Think of the positive possibilities for your blog, rather than encouraging people to think disparagingly about another.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Sandra, did you mean to comment on another post?