The good things in life

Let me start with the bad things in life. Specifically Boris Johnson as new prime minister of the UK and a Burqa-ban which has come into effect today in The Netherlands are upsetting me and so, for my own sanity, I keep my news intake to a minimum right now. Instead, I try to focus on the good things in life. For instance: my summer holiday started on Wednesday, the technique of using baking powder to clean my two pairs of  Birkenstock slippers sorta worked (I walk on them all day every day in the summer, I kid you not), today Mr Esther, my daughter and I will go on a day trip to a city near the German border, and tomorrow I am going to meet my ex-coworker’s two week old baby girl! When we exchanged chat messages earlier this week, she said she was very low on bibs for the baby, so I got her these (that 5th item is a shirt and not a bib)…

baby gifts

It’s always good to focus on babies over politics. 🙂

What also makes me happy is the new Picard trailer. I think I have watched it 10 times already. I love Jean-Luc Picard (and Patrick Stewart as well) and I so very much wish for leaders like him in the real world!

I can hardly wait for this in 2020!

Next up: as I love Roman Holiday so very much, I had to watch last weekend’s Hallmark movie Rome in Love, which was about an unknown actress getting ready to film a Roman Holiday remake and she herself falls in love with an American journalist in Rome. Kinda meta, I know. I watched the movie, it was OK, but had nowhere near the charm of Roman Holiday, which I just needed to watch again for the zillionth time. That movie is always the best pick-me-up movie! It got me back to zipping through some Audrey Hepburn movies again and boy was she good and gorgeous! The last movie she did was a small role as an angel in the Steven Spielberg movie Always. I re-watched her scenes in that and was struck by this image of her in the movie at one point…

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The humanity and kindness in her face in that sunset light is just breathtaking.

And there are more goodies to be focused on! On Guylty’s blog the other day she was asking about ‘other gods’ we like besides Richard. In the comments section I mentioned the other (male) gods present in folders on my computer…

I have several side attractions: Colin Firth, Gregory Peck, Hugh Jackman, but I also have some David Bowie, Keanu Reeves, Pierce Brosnan, Simon Baker, James Stewart, Lucas Bryant (yeah, not known), Richard Chamberlain and Viggo Mortensen folders. However those folders are tiny compared to my Richard Armitage folder. Just did a check, I think the largest folder after Richard is Colin Firth with some 400 items. Richard’s folder has 3000 items… 🙂

This triggered me to check out what my more recent actor-crush, Lucas Bryant, has been up to. He’s been pretty quiet of late, not many new roles to speak of, but I did find out that he’s been doing a few M.A.R.V.E.L. Agents of Shield episodes recently. I don’t watch that show but have watched (parts of) the 3 episodes he’s in last night and boy, did he look fine! The camera sure does like him in close-up.

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Last but not least, I watched the newest Suits episode this morning (season 9, episode 3) and in it there was a Louis Litt dream sequence which was so funny! Louis is a judge and a lawyer in that dream and the jury turns out to be made up out of 12 Harveys!

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Gabriel Macht, who plays Harvey on Suits, directed this episode and I wonder if this court scene was the funniest thing he has ever directed and how much fun did he have embodying those 12 Harveys? The eye-scratching middle finger and the one where he holds a cat like that (cats are Louis’s obsession, not Harvey’s!) are the highlights for me. All of Louis’s insecurities, especially with regards to Harvey, are on display here and that just cracks me up. Rick Hoffman as Louis remains a highlight of this show. Oh heck, here’s the whole scene…

I’m so glad there are also so many joys in this world. 🙂

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Mon coeur brisé

Watching the news unfold of Notre Dame cathedral burning in Paris…

CNN Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt-AFP-Getty ImagesCNN Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt-AFP-Getty Images2AP Michel EulerFRANCE-FIRE-NOTRE DAMEFRANCE-FIRE-NOTRE DAME

Been glued to the screen for the past three hours… what an awful, awful sight! I wish I knew what else to say… my heart goes out to Paris.

Supermassive black hole

After doing some chores around the house today and before going out for groceries (I always have Wednesdays off work), I sat down for a little breather and switched on the TV news. Just starting was a press conference that was being held about the first ever black hole picture. Now, I am not scientifically minded at all and I know next to nothing about astronomy, but the excitement at this news conference was so palpable, I was sucked in. The world was presented with this image:

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This is apparently a supermassive black hole surrounded by a ring of gas in a distant galaxy far far away.  From what I understand, this proves that Einstein’s black hole theory was correct. This BBC news item describes it all way better than I ever could. Science theory (and fiction in a way) has become science fact! How very cool is that? I wish we had a Captain Picard who could go and explore for us.

Apparently the black hole in our own galaxy is harder to discover but the existence of black holes now seems to be proven. This really is pretty exciting stuff! And what is extra beautiful to me is how this has been achieved with people and organizations all over the world working together. An organisation called Event Horizon Telescope was formed with this aim in mind, to work together internationally and study black holes together. With all the focus in the news nowadays on egomaniac policies and politicians, this news is such a breath of fresh air.

And now for the past few hours, I’ve had this Muse song ghosting around in my head…

I think my older scientist sister, who now works as a computer programmer, but who has also studied chemistry at uni, has always been fascinated by astronomy and actually understands all of what Einstein’s theory of relativity is about, will be over the moon excited by this news. Heck, even I am excited now. 🙂

Brexit protest – will it help?

Been catching up a little with the news again today after I took a small time-out for a few days because it all got a bit much. So, it seems yesterday there was a huge march in London protesting Brexit. Hundreds of thousands, maybe even a million, marched! March 29th as Brexit date is looming (only 5 more days!) and I doubt this protest will change much, but I can only hope. Protest signs last year during the Trump visit were good, signs protesting Brexit yesterday were just as good! As I’ve been reading, I’ve been collecting images. In support of protesting Brexit, here’s a collection of the signs I enjoyed most (click on images to enlarge).

The Revoke Article 50 petition is up to 5 and a quarter million signatures when I checked just now:

… but I doubt that even that will stop Brexit. I don’t think anything will stop it now, unfortunately, but I will keep on hoping.

We’re going to hell

We had elections today in the Netherlands, provincial elections and waterboard elections. While waterboards are very important for our little country that has partially been claimed from water, the provincial election is the bigger fish. The people who get voted in decide who will make up our ‘First Chamber’ (our senate or upper house). So, to the polling station I went this afternoon.

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First exit polls show that the far right party, Forum voor Democratie (FVD) will become the biggest party in my province of South-Holland. Two years ago I breathed a sigh of relief when another far right party (PVV) narrowly missed becoming the largest party in our parliamentary elections. In these elections we’re not that lucky, it seems. This other far right party, FVD, participated in provincial elections for the first time and it looks like they’ll be the largest party here in our province. What the F*** is happening to this world? I’m so angry now!

I need to go to bed and just hope that tomorrow morning the news will be more favourable and this will only have been a scare. I’m emotionally drained right now.

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Luckily I’m exhausted and I expect to drop off to a hopefully oblivious sleep quickly.