Chucklebutt

I’ve been watching Suits bloopers and behind the scenes Gabriel Macht is apparently the one who cracks up most often. In one little behind the scene Sarah Rafferty calls him “chucklebutt” and while he’s chuckling you hear him say, “Sarah, stop it!” Here’s a gif of that moment (and a video starting at 5:37 mins here, it’s even better with sound)…

I made a few more Gabriel chuckling behind the scenes gifs (in the third gif he is trying to not laugh before he cracks up in the fourth gif, click on the images to see them a bit larger if you like)…

… and some dancing behind the scenes gifs, he’s got quite the moves.

And a couple more behind the scenes giggles gifs…

I just love the word chucklebutt, it seems very fitting for Gabriel, and I think I may use it as an alias somewhere, sometime should I ever need one online. Thank you, Sarah, for your quips! 🙂

A castle & brown eyes

First off, my vertigo is subsiding, woohoo!! Not all gone yet, but definitely improving. This means that on Sunday, after visiting my mother, I was well enough to take a day trip with my daughter and we visited my old boarding school which used to be situated in a castle near Utrecht. In my day (35-33 years ago… that sounds so old and long ago!) it all looked a bit different – in the second picture with the red arrow is the ‘Blokhut’ where I used to board with the school nurse and 4 other girls.

Mini me was curious about my boarding school years and as the grounds were open, we were able to walk around and look around. I always loved the driveway up to the castle and it still looks lovely…

The old coach house was still looking good from the outside, it used to be the girls dorm, where most of the girls lived…

There used to be a little wooden building to the left of the coach house that we used to call “The Chambre”. There we could buy evening snacks, play some pool (although I rarely did that) and socialize; it is completely in ruins now…

To the right of the coach house, the “Blokhut” was situated where I used to live. I first thought it was not there anymore as it is now almost obscured from view by shrubbery overgrowing it. I remember it like this (red arrow is pointing to my room)…

On Sunday the Blokhut looked like this… Only when we came up close could we see the entrance, the side of the building where I’d lived was only partially accessible around the back. Through the door I could look into the hall but my old bedroom window was boarded up.

The castle itself was still very pretty (although I don’t like the white plaster as much, it used to be all red brick)…

It was a lovely trip down memory lane and now my daughter wants to go to boarding school as well (even though I told her that boarding school also had its downsides).

The kids have spring break this week and I am off for the most part as well. Today Mr Esther and I decided to go for a walk somewhere further east and Junior was the one to join us for a change. He’s pretty busy normally with school or his girlfriend, but today, while mini me decided to spend the day with a friend, he had no plans. He decided to join us for our walk and it was lovely to have him alone with us for a whole afternoon for a change.

Besides vertigo, work and socially distanced outings here and there, I’ve been keeping busy with the Sue Thomas obsession, making two fan videos (now also up on the Sue Thomas video page that I set up).

I’ve also been re-watching bits and pieces of Suits again as Yannick Bisson’s brown eyes made me long for Gabriel Macht’s brown eyes again. I still love how the character of Harvey Specter developed and changed in the nine seasons that the show had.

Bisson’s Murdoch Mysteries season 14 is now airing, so I’m also watching the new episodes of that show as they come out. Nothing too challenging but a lot of fun, especially last night’s episode with the return of the whacko Newsome family.

I swear, I’d watch a spinoff sitcom with just Ruth Newsome-Higgins (Siobhan Murphy, a character that was introduced in season 10 and appears occasionally), she’s brilliant.

Another thing that has me fascinated is the Mars landing and the images coming from there…

Following NASA Perseverance on Twitter is cool.

Speaking of space, I know, I know that I should watch Richard Armitage’s new movie Space Sweepers over on Netflix, but I can’t quite make myself do so yet. While I enjoy some scifi, it’s not my go to genre and Richard’s role isn’t that huge, is it?

I’ll watch in time, maybe someone in the comments can let me know if it’s worth it? Maybe if his eyes were brown (my current obsession is kind, brown eyes) like in My Zoe I would be more tempted? Although, I admit that seeing brown eyes on Richard instead of his blue eyes is a little weird to me.

When I’m in obsession mode, normal online activities fall by the wayside, which means I have a huge backlog of blog reading to do. I don’t think I can or will promise to catch up on all, so my sincere apologies to those readers who are used to me commenting on their blogs! I’ll probably start coming around again more but not this evening, I have some more brown eyes that I need to get lost in after I post this…

Crazy, but OK

Sourced this one myself for a change as I feel I should’ve had/seen a gif of this little scene years ago, I could have used it so often. Yannick Bisson and Deanne Bray in Sue Thomas F.B.Eye, when signing says more than words can convey…

In addition, I sourced this one that could have been used often in response to the above (admittedly a long gif but I love this little exchange)…

… or this one. Everyone can use an “It’s OK” hug…

Yup, love this show, another one that got canceled far too soon.

In a rabbit hole with Yannick

I’m still here but have not been blogging much due to going down another rabbit hole during my current bout with vertigo. This rabbit hole has been keeping me busy while I recline on the couch with my head propped up against a pillow as it’s easier to watch things on my laptop than to type. The rabbit hole has transported me to Yannick-Bisson-land these past few weeks. For those of you who don’t know who he is, he’s the lead actor in the Murdoch Mysteries which is a mostly light-hearted detective series set in the late 1890s/early 1900s in Toronto.

Murdoch has just started it’s 14th (!!) season of 13-18 episodes each. I’ve been aware of this show for quite a long time but only recently, just before I got the vertigo, I decided to delve into it and start watching it. It took up a lot of my time and so, apart from my family and some work I’ve still been able to do, I’ve been negelecting everything else in favour of Detective William Murdoch. It’s been fun and I found that, for me, the attraction doesn’t so much lie in the mysteries solved on the show but more in the characters and the portrayal of the time period.

I really like the meticulous, inventive and Catholic (an important part of his identity) Detective William Murdoch who lives in his head and sometimes needs to loosen up a bit…

… and his relationship with free spirited Dr. Julia Ogden (played by Hélène Joy). She goes through several careers (coroner, psychiatrist and practicing doctor) which, yes, is a bit unlikely but a lot of this series is and in this case that really only adds on to instead of takes away from the fun. She is a smart and resourceful woman with a sense of humor that amuses mostly herself…

Besides William and Julia, there are also some very nicely drawn secondary characters, of whom quite funny creative thinker Constable George Crabtree (Jonny Harris) and in later seasons detective Llewellyn Watts (Daniel Maslany, a kind of Detective Columbo in 1900) are my favourites.

My favourite occasional guest stars are the genius but unlucky inventor and entrepreneur James Pendrick (Peter Stebbings)…

… or the good hearted spoiled rich girl Ruth Newsome (Siobhan Murphy – she’s seriously great!) and her quite hilarious story with Constable Henry Higgins (Lachlan Murdoch).

I also love the time in which Murdoch is set, the famous guests that become involved in cases (like Arthur Conan Doyle, Theodore Roosevelt, Harry Houdini, Nikola Tesla, Alexander Graham Bell, young Winston Churchill, etc.) and all its comical references to new inventions or even future inventions.

It’s not just inventions, it’s also concepts and logos. The early 20th century version of swiping photos left or right from a stack of pictures in Tinder style fashion cracked me up, for instance, or how I now know where the rooster on Kelloggs Cornflakes orginated from. So, the characters, time period and humor are more fun to me to watch than the criminal storylines themselves and I do admit to often fast forwarding through some of the case procedural parts of the episodes in favour of the scenes more focussed on characters and gadgets. All in all, though, this has turned out to be a fun show to watch to forget my vertigo.

As handsome and almost too good-looking as Yannick Bisson aka Detective William Murdoch may be, I am especially taken with his large, expressive, brown eyes. Yes, I really enjoy how he gave life to the character of Murdoch, imbuing him with not only smarts but also depth of feeling. And man, again, those eyes…

Naturally, this made me want to study Bisson some more and so I looked into his backlog of work as well. In researching that, I didn’t find that many other projects that really interest me, although in time I will try those few Hallmark mysteries he did a few years ago. However, there was one other project he’d done that did stick out for me and that was another TV series he’d done in the early 2000s called Sue Thomas, F.B. Eye. Sue Thomas is an FBI cop show about a deaf woman (Deanne Bray) who is very good at reading lips and has a ‘hearing dog’ who helps her navigate daily life. FBI agent Jack Hudson (yep, Yannick Bisson) sees her potential and she starts working in surveillance with him and very much becomes integral to catching all those criminals.

The story is based on true events. Here’s an old trailer…

I’ve been able to get my hands on this old series and I’ve gotta say I loved it. It’s not just the will they/won’t they aspect between Sue and Jack that I loved…

What I really loved was the insight into this deaf woman’s life and how astonishing she is in navigating a world she can not hear, trying to assert herself in it. She isn’t perfect, she makes mistakes and has a very large learning curve but she also gives back a lot to the team in her smart, observant, warm and uncynical approach. We see her triumphs but also her difficulties and on occasion the sound even goes off completely to see the world from Sue’s point of view. She always needs to remind people that she needs to see their lips and never disappears into the background just because she’s deaf. The difficulties of what it means to not hear anything are shown in very practical ways, for example when she can’t hear a shot being fired or when people try to surprise her with a little party but she doesn’t notice them and their “surprise” yell until she turns around and actually sees them. The advantages of knowing sign language also become clear, when sometimes things can be better communicated with signs rather than words. The alienation she sometimes feels when she can’t follow what’s going on is nicely mirrored on occasion when she signs with other deaf people and the hearing people then can’t follow what’s going on. As viewers we are lucky to have those scenes subtitled. I was also struck again by how beautiful sign language actually is. I wonder if Yannick still remembers some of the sign language he learned on that show 16-19 years ago.

It’s all really fascinating stuff, wrapped into quite exciting FBI stories with a nice team of original characters, with flaws and all, surrounding Sue.

And even the FBI office itself seems more realistic than on many other shows I’ve seen, right down to the office looking relatively normal and the office politics feeling real, with people who are sticklers for admin protocols or how a team leader can make or break your pleasure in work.

The show only lasted 3 seasons and got cancelled prematurely when the PAX channel it was broadcast on decided not to do anymore original programming. Such a shame – there was still a lot of story left to tell… Guess I need to delve into the fan fiction side of things now to get some resolution.

Having Yannick Bisson in his thirties as the object of affection is really quite a lovely thing too. I love his portrayal of Jack, a very capable, sexy and quick thinking agent whose world and heart opens up in a way he never expected with Sue. I also love that he tries to become more a part of her world and as the series progresses learns some sign language himself. And I can’t deny it, those puppy dog chocolate eyes really do it for me…

I don’t know if it’s these past weeks spent with the warm brown chocolate eyes or whether meds and rest are working, but maybe I’m starting to feel a little better… I’ll remain relatively quiet for a while yet, I suspect, as I finish watching Sue Thomas.

Swaying vs merriment

About a week and a half ago, I was clearing out old, never used sweaters and put them in a large plastic bag for clothes donations. Of course I should have remembered that I have a light dust mite allergy and handling sweaters that haven’t been used or washed in ages can trigger that. Sure enough, soon after the task was done my nose started clogging, my palate started itching and my eyes got red. I rinsed my nose out and washed my face and hands and figured that would be that but alas, no. My sinuses started clogging, I had bad headaches the next day and soon enough my dizziness returned! I’ve been battling it all with nose spray and anti-vertigo pills for the past week, to little avail. The last time I had this a little over a year ago, it took months to go away. I so hope that won’t be the case again now! Trying to keep spirits up despite it all and as I was just looking at some pictures on my phone I came across some nice ones from last weekend.

Last Sunday, Mr Esther, mini me and I went for a lovely drive (it’s as if, when I lie my head back against the headrest, the gentle motion of the car evens out the vertigo a bit). We stopped somewhere to get a takeaway meal for in the car (restaurants are only open for takeaway) and, as I waited for what I had ordered, it occurred to me that it looked like I was going to rob that place! The scenery during the drive was beautiful and very Dutch with windmills and boats along the way…

While there are lots of bridges over the very many streams and rivers we have here in The Netherlands, there are also still ferries in use and we took one (the ride lasted about a minute and a half) about 20 minutes away from where we live…

It’s good to appreciate the nice things in life and try to not get overwhelmed by such a stupid little thing like the swaying going on in my head right now. It’s a bit like being very tipsy but without the merriment, so I try to derive my merriment from other things such as last weekend’s little drive and also catching up on the many many seasons of Murdoch Mysteries as I lay back against pillows.

Just worked a half day and I’m off for a little lie-down now. I really hope this vertigo goes away again soon…