Saturday Morning Brain Drain [1/5/21]

A place to let it all out.

What I watched: Death in Paradise, Midsomer Murders, and Brokenwood, each has launched new seasons. Seeing them is like catching up with old friends. And of course, the never-ending oeuvre of Monty Don and Gardeners’ World.

What I read: I read the three books in Ward Larsen’s Jammer Davis series. This series is about an ex-military air crash investigator. Because Larsen was a fighter pilot in the US Air Force, a federal law enforcement officer, and an aircraft accident investigator, the content plays as real. While the hero is a bit macho, the female characters are also strong.

 I also read Rebecca Zanetti’s latest in her Dark Protector’s Vampire Demon series, but don’t you bother, it was quite formulaic. What I can recommend is her Scorpius Syndrome series. Set in post-apocalyptic United States, the pandemic (which makes zombies) started in a research lab. One woman whose blood is now blue may be immune, and one ex-gang leader in LA is protecting the few hundred survivors.  

What I listened to this week: Dekker, Tethered Wrapped Around. Seriously, this is a beautiful song, and I am all-in with his newish album (2020), Slow Reveal: Chapter One.

And if I’m drown out or in free fall
You are my favourite one of all
And when I’m not fully settled down
To you I’m tethered, wrapped around

Dekker, This Here Island

Daniel Norgren, The Flow (reminds me of Neil Young)

And one more Dekker, A Better Way

So, darling DeadSplinterites, is everyone okay? Are you feeling all right? What have you watched, read, or listened to? Do you have any plans, fun or otherwise, for the weekend? Please stop in, dear friends, and let us know what is up with you! And like the song says, you are my favourite one of all.

About Elliecoo 475 Articles
Four dogs, one partner. The dogs win.


  1. Watched:  A Hologram for the King.  A Tom Hanks film that I’d never heard of before even though it was already five years old.  Turns out there’s a reason why I’d never heard of it–it sucked.

    Read:  The Story of a Weird World I Was Never Allowed to Tell.  A supremely fucked-up story about a man who was so deluded that he even dragged this poor woman’s mother down with him.  I once knew a guy like this, but he was obviously nuts.  The guy in this story was a real paradox because–other than his delusion–he was pretty well functional and put together.


    • Dammit, I forgot to include what I’d listened to.  I hadn’t heard much of Tom Petty’s later work so this song Running Man’s Bible from the album Mojo really stuck out to me this week.


    • I read Hologram and was underwhelmed. The book seems to feel like the biggest problem with modern capitalism and restrictive societies is people spinning their wheels, and it feels like it’s barely more than a TED talk.

  2. I remember the first time I heard Tom Petty from the album with American Girl on it. I was blown away , especially as it was during the disco era, and it was so refreshing. 


  3. Watched Shadow and Bone (Netflix). It’s a YA fantasy series based on a book series. I liked the diverse cast. It did a poor job of making the politics feel real or important enough to bother remembering which people live in the N/E/S/W and why they are at war with each other. It was also very chaste. I don’t want or expect rape scenes but adults hesitating to hold hands is not gonna do it for me. The costumes, settings, and CGI are pretty. The plot is predictable. The pacing is slow until the halfway marker. If you like fantasy shows and adjust your expectations halfway down from GoT to Made for and by Canadians TV, then you will be mildly entertained by Shadow and Bone…maybe only Canadians will understand what I mean by that.

    • I watched the preview for that but I can’t commit. The acting seems very theater kids, which I find offputting. 

  4. Somebody’s husband that hangs out around here recently sent me down a rabbit hole and I have been listening to way too much of these guys…


    • @Loveshaq

      And your Queen compilation
      Still persists to play
      Cos I’ve got nothing against Freddy Mercury
      But do you have to play
      His whole discography?

      • They definitely have some great lyrics!  I sent some of this stuff to my pro drummer friend and he was like, “how do I get in this band?”

  5. @Loveshaq, ahem…I may know of whom you speak.

  6. I know I watched something…oh yeah…baseball. Will they ever get to 500 again? My friend Mike told me ‘if your team is not at 500 by the all-star break the season is done’, so I’m thinking I will have more time on my hands. Picked up some scrubby yarn so I can knit scrubbies while watching baseball so it won’t be a total loss.
    Read: The Sleepwalkers, finished the Romanticist, now I’m on the Anarchist. The main characters have fucked up ideas about women, still entertaining though. I also read through my recipe collection. Why do I have 4 recipes for blini when I made blini exactly one time? Should I make blini? I think I like blini. Do I have anything to put on the blini? Where is my mind?

    • We at FYCE heartily support your making (and recording for posting) blink! @Sedevilc

  7. I watched the first three episodes of Rutherford Falls on Peacock. It’s …fine. I love that it has such a diverse cast, half are Native American, as the show runner and most of the writers. But Ed Helms is the lead and I don’t find him funny or interesting. Maybe it will get better. And Paul F Tompkins in episode 2 was fantastic of course.



    It’s Derby Day and whether you like horse racing or not that’s a big deal in these parts. So I’m listening to John Prine’s version of My Old Kentucky Home.



    My dog isn’t feeling well and I’m a little worried. She was fine last night but this morning she didn’t want to go out. She hasn’t pestered for her morning walk, has mostly slept. I hope she perks up this afternoon. 

    • Welcome home @Hannibal. Here is hoping that your dear Fanny feels better soon. Violet is also under the weather. 

      • Thanks @Elliecoo I hope Violet feels better soon too. Enjoy your family day.

    • @Hannibal – I was wondering about Rutherford Falls – I keep thinking I’m going to watch it and then pick something else.
      Have you tried giving your pup some Pepcid(famotidine)? It’s what my vet recommends for upset tummies.

      • @Lymond I’m not sure it’s her tummy. I just gave her some canned chicken and she ate it. She’s very listless, walking slowly, and mostly sleeping. She isn’t limping. I’ve never seen her like this so it is concerning. If she doesn’t seem better by this evening I’ll probably call the emergency vet. I do have Pepcid, we used to give it to our corgi. I’ll have to check the expiration date on it. 

        • Hmm – My littlest guy got stung by something last week. He wasn’t his usual peppy self and everytime I touched him or he tried to jump in my lap – he would whimper. I was afraid he’d hurt is leg or something – even though he wasn’t limping. He was eating okay. When I took him to the vet – the only thing they could figure out was that he got stung or bitten by something. He was better the next day. Not trying to be an armchair vet – I just know it’s hard to figure out what’s wrong with them. 

          • I’m glad your little guy got over it quickly. I’ve been playing armchair vet all morning, checking her for cuts, bites, lumps, whatever. Trying to remember how she was before bed last night, what she could have gotten into. I wish they could just tell us what’s wrong so we can fix it for them!  She did just ask to go out on the deck and is laying in the sun. That’s the first normal thing she’s done all day so I’m hoping she’s starting to feel better. 

            • @Hannibal How old is Fanny? I’ve been dealing with old sick pets for a long time. It can be so frustrating when something isn’t right but you don’t know what’s wrong either.

              • @CestLaVie She’s only four. She seems to be a little better, maybe. She’s laying in the yard and observing what’s going on around the yard instead of sleeping. I hope the worst is over How is old kitty today?

                • @Hannibal Aw Fanny’s still a baby! Still it’s always best to monitor any change in normal behavior patterns. I’m glad to hear she’s perked up a bit. Hopefully it was just a mood and she’ll be herself soon. 
                  Old Kitteh is quiet and snuggly, which is a good thing.  It’s super rainy here, so that’s probably keeping her feeling sleepy too. 

  8. @Sedevilc 

    We binged One Lane Bridge. We like to play “We know that actor”. That series alone had people that were in Brokenwood Mysteries, The Almighty Johnsons, and The Doctor Blake Mysteries. I would recommend them all by the way.

  9. I am watching Allen v. Farrow on HBO. It’s watchathon week on Xfinity which is the only reason i have access to it. I never got into Woody Allen’s work, so I’ve never held him up as a paragon of filmmaking. I’m perfectly capable if believing the accusations against him. But holy hell, if you watch this and still think he’s a-ok, you have a hole in your head.

    • @pumpkinspies watching that documentary last month made me physically uncomfortable multiple times

      And I’m in a similar boat with caring about his movies. My parents never liked him at all so we never cared when I was a kid, and when I was old enough to be looking for entertainment I was always like “why are the male leads so much older? GROSS.” so it wasn’t my thing either. 

      • Yep, there are warnings in the beginning for descriptions of abuse (for anyone who hasn’t seen it). 
        And as a person who has never seen his movies, I thought it was interesting when that one journalist looked thru the Allen archives at (college I forgot the name of). And he came to the same conclusion, “why is this gross old leading man always with a teen or very young adult woman???” Art imitates life after all. 

  10. The kids have arrived, cocktails have been mixed, I will check in later. Carry on, DeadSplinterites!

  11. I’ve read a number of books over the last couple weeks:

    Born to Walk: The Transformative Power of a Pedestrian Act, by Dan Rubinstein. Basically a treatise about how critical walking can be to our lives. Was a good kick in the butt for me. Highly recommended.
    Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances, by Neil Gaiman. Short stories from the guy who wrote American Gods. One story is even a follow to AG. There’s also a Dr. Who story that Gaiman wrote several years ago. I really enjoyed this one, even if not everything clicked with me. Recommended.
    Northland: A 4,000-Mile Journey Along America’s Forgotten Border, by Porter Fox. The author travels the length of the US-Canada border, which is not the border that gets a lot of attention in the US. I found this book more interesting than I had imagined. I would put this in the “historical travelogue” category that I always seem to enjoy. Highly recommended, with a caveat to the Canadians here — many remarks about this book seem to center around the fact that while Fox hits on a lot of history, it’s from an American perspective, not Canadian. The author even admits as much in his acknowledgements at the end of the book.


    • I will put Born to Walk on my list. I’ve been making a point of walking a lot more since the start of the year after letting it slide for too long, and I’ve remembered how big a difference it makes.

      • I hope you will enjoy it! It really struck a chord with me, and to be honest, I wasn’t expecting it to. It was just readily available as an e-book from my library, and I needed something right-now at that point.

  12. Watched: Pillow Talk- 1960s silly romcom with Doris Day & Rock Hudson. One of my comfort movies I can watch over & over
    Read: Let It Go by Peter Walsh, a book on downsizing your amount of possessions, something I really want/need to do. So far I’m really liking it. 
    Listened: The Getaway by RHCP. A perfect rainy day listening to vinyl records album. 

    • Dammit! 

  13. Continuing to consume things I don’t normally have access to, I’m now watching “Q: Into The Storm” on HBO. And holy shitballs folks, there’s no hope for humanity. It looks like we’re going to collectively survive this pandemic so I’m back to rooting for Giant Asteroid.

  14. Watching Santa Clarita Diet, which seems weirdly nihilistic and dripping with contempt for white suburban liberal types (also gore). 

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