hildy89: (play suspended for rain)
And Saturday it rained. Lord did it rain. All morning and nearly all afternoon. Fortunately dear Hanna wasn't quite as hard-hearted as her Savannah namesake and spared us some of her fury. The DC types worked pretty fast to catch bad draining streets/alleys. I stayed inside, having done my groceries on Friday, and watched the US Open's men's semi-finals. Federer managed to get in his match, but Nadal had his match switched to the smaller Armstrong stadium. They didn't finished until today. Murray just wouldn't let him get comfortable out there. Part of me is thrilled for Andy, but part of me wishes it had been Tim.

Then last night I went over to [livejournal.com profile] pinkpolarity's place for a belated birthday celebration. She introduced me to the magic of the Xbox. The last time I played video games was in the arcades or with the good old days of Coleco Vision. *wistful about cracking Zaxxon* And as I tried to explain to her, most arcade games have one controller and maybe two buttons, so the Xbox controller was really hard for me to master. The whole idea of "seeing and moving" (i.e. look around first and then move) was alien to me. She tried me out on the first KOTOR game which I enjoyed. It's a very forgiving game for beginners with nice reminders throughout. Then I hit a stumbling block called Battlefront. I just couldn't master it. We tried putting me through the first Halo's tutorial to see if it would help. The world was interesting, but it's not really my type of game.

I'm gearing up for another Avengers kick. Netflix brought me the extras disk off the Emma Peel Megaset. The "Case of the Missing Corpse" promo was delightful. The real revelation were the last remaining season one episodes with Ian Hendry as Dr. David Keel. Like Doctor Who, the Avengers is sadly missing some of its history because of the masters were taped over/lost/otherwise misplaced. Only the first act of "Hot Snow" remains and "Girl on a Trapeze" and "Frighteners" were complete. I actually quite liked "Girl on a Trapeze" more than "Frighteners", even though the former lacked Patrick Macnee as Steed. (I also liked Nurse Carol better than Keel's actual fiancee. She came off as smarter. Oh well.)

Somehow I've managed to get some reading done. I finished the latest Elizabeth Peters' mystery, Laughter of Dead Kings, the last Vicki Bliss mystery. I'll need to write up my thoughts on that one later, because some things bothered me about that book, especially compared to the earlier books in the series. I also finished the first Rogue Angel book Destiny, which is like Witchblade meets Relic Hunter, complete with Joan of Arc references. It's fluffy mindless entertainment with a fairly decent heroine. That she's nearly the only female character in the book is a little worrying. My mother must have sensed I needed a book to read. Either that or she magically senses my struggles with writing these days. She sent me Margaret Atwood's Negotiating with the Dead: A Writer on Writing.
hildy89: (wimbledon court)
It must be time for tennis. Wimbledon starts today. With Henman gone, I have no idea who I'll wind up rooting for. At least I'll have something else besides baseball. I picked the only good game to attend. The Rangers won the other two games against the Nationals. The starting pitchers did fine; it was the offense that let them down as usual.

And is nothing sacred? First I said goodbye to skating's beloved 6.0 and now they won't even let me have a perfect 10. The gymnastics code of points has undergone an overhaul so that the new 10 is 17. I watched part of last night's US Olympic gymnastics trials. Chellsie Memmel impressed me as much as the more popular Johnson and Liukin. They select two girls that night and then the rest have to go through a selection camp. That's asking for injuries or worse. I remember when they selected everyone at Trials. I also watched the last five minutes of the diving trials, where a 30-year-old diver made her third Olympics and everyone was amazed.
hildy89: (cuff)
The US Open is nearly over. I've made most of my goodbyes to Henman, and said hello to some new faces. New American face John Isner towered (he's 6'9"!) over everyone, even swiped a set from Federer. He's also disproving the idea that no good pros come from college tennis. The majority of the PGA golfers all played for some university, but the tennis programs are hurting. Bet they'll get a boost from this story. The other story was the Serbian triad. All of them brought style and flair and fun to their games. Novak Djokovic is moving through the men's draw. He does some hysterically funny (and devastatingly accurate) impressions of tennis player's service antics. Last night after he won his semifinal he imitated Nadal and Sharapova.

Cross stitch wise, I think my first annual US Openalong was quite successful. I posted a scan of my progress on "Garden Verses". Despite a bad frogging incident that threatened my stitcher's morale, I gamely carried on. The gallery with my updates are here to give some context of how it's going, but this section was mostly what I've worked on for the last two weeks with the arm and papers. Needless to say I'm quite pleased. I still have the men's semis and the finals to watch and maybe I'll add yet another scan if there's sufficient progress.
hildy89: (come on tim)
Color me one dumbfounded Henman fan. I'll just let my icon speak for me.
hildy89: (wimbledon court)
My old Cafe Tirolo changed management awhile back. I had dinner tonight and while the pizza was mostly the same, the ambiance sadly was not. Gone was the homey family atmosphere of the place. The previous owner used to know me by sight, since I came in so often. The classical and Alpine/Swiss/Italian folk music had been replaced by smaltzy 70s pop music. Very disheartening to see.

US Open has opened in Flushing Meadow, so my nights will be filled with tennis again. They had a tribute to Althea Gibson tonight before the evening matches. It was a little eerie hearing the band playing on television, while the local high school band was practicing across the street.

Over on the [livejournal.com profile] cross_stitch community, [livejournal.com profile] fuzzyboo03 has suggested a US Open Stitchalong, similar to the one they did for the World Cup. I could use the extra incentive. I'm planning on getting some work done on "Garden Verses", although I'm frogging left and right tonight.
hildy89: (come on tim)
So it's official. Tim Henman has announced his retirement from competitive tennis after the Davis Cup matches. Not at all surprising given his age or his injuries, but still sad to see. As usual he has a tough draw at the US Open. But if he gets past his first match and further into the draw, he'll only get Nadal, instead of Federer. Ah well. It's been a wild ride. Henman's nickname might be Tiger, but it could easily be Heartbreaker, because of the number of five set matches he's gone through. Oh, for what might have been... I always seem to like those type of athletes, don't I? Now I'll need to find someone new to root for.
hildy89: (play suspended for rain)
This icon is getting a lot of use already. Appropriate given the downpour we had earlier this afternoon. Given that the weather is unhealthy hazy hot and humid, it's not surprising thunderstorms are also in the equation. We're supposed to get more tomorrow when my apartment building has scheduled the window cleaning. Why do they always schedule it for the crazy hot summer?

Henman surprised everyone and outlasted Moya in five sets, only to play another charming Spaniard today. Or he was supposed to, but it's Wimbledon, therefore the weather is subject to change at any moment. He only got in two games of the first set before the rain came in. At least he'll have more time to recover from the five set match, but he has to regear himself up for this match.

I saw an ENT yesterday. Pretty anticlimatic there. He examined my sinuses and after some time gave me a stronger medication to see if it'll clear up the infection. At this point, I'm just hoping it works, because June has been utterly miserable thus far.
hildy89: (play suspended for rain)
It wouldn't quite be Wimbledon unless they had some sort of screwy weather delay. This year they've taken off the roof off the grand old Centre Court (they're installing a new sliding one) and like clockwork, the skies opened on the first day.

The BBC online commentator for Henman's match commented on the lack of roof: "Still feels strange to look up and see Centre Court without a roof - it's like meeting an old pal for a drink, only to find he's gone completely bald since you last saw him."

Hopefully Tim won't tense up in the delay. Yes, yes, I'm a turncoat. I could care less about most of the Americans, except maybe James Blake and Serena Williams.
hildy89: (dangerous weapons)
I wish I could claim I was feeling better. I get brief bursts of relief, eclipsed by sheer torture. I bit the bullet and switched back to the brand name Flonase. Generics shouldn't be this different. Even if it isn't the difference, at least I know how I react to the brand name version.

I watched a lot of golf this weekend. Next week the green grasses of Wimbledon will beckon and take up vast amounts of time. I swear I think I spend as much time on the BBC website during that last week in June as when Who is airing, probably less because of the potential for spoilers. I don't hold out a lot of hope for any of my favorites. Henman has been bounced out his last umpteen tournaments in the first round. Federer is turning into the Sampras of this generation -- beautiful to watch and damn near unbeatable on grass, but looks actually human on clay. Maybe someone will surprise us.

Despite being very behind in my Who viewing this season, I did break down and watch "Utopia". I knew the squeeing would be hard to ignore. I'm glad I did. Like most people have said in other reviews, the BBC can't keep some bits secrets if they tried. On the other hand, the best part, they had me completely fooled until the moment it happened. Very good use of distraction. Make a lot of noise over here, but pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...

Utopia spoilers )
hildy89: (henman)
The mind turns to tennis? Or something like that. The US Open is playing in the background and Henman is through to the next round where he will unfortunately play Federer yet again for the second straight Grand Slam. Ah well, at least he didn't have too hard a time getting rid of his opponent this time, so he'll have some energy left. However the fashion police should fine Bethanie Mattek for what I hope is merely a very strange practice outfit.
hildy89: (henman)
Cleaning continues. I still wish I had a better idea when all this was going to happen. The dates on their notice was screwed up to begin with, but I don't want them to come back with "Well, we warned you." Yeah, a whole weekend in advance. Twits!

Wimbledon is over for the singles. As usual, I cannot seem to predict the women's final to save my life. As the tour shifts over to the U.S., I'm seriously considering a tennis trip or two for my birthday. Two days after my dreaded birthday, the U.S. Open starts in New York, a decent train ride away, maybe with a manga shopping trip in Manhattan, if I can swing it. Before that, US Open Series comes to DC for the Legg Mason classic with Henman supposed to be playing, along with a few other favorites. Of course, they won't post schedules or whatever until it gets closer, so it's hard to pick my tickets/sessions right now. All this hinges on how money is running come end of this month and August. Obviously the DC one will mostly be ticket and transportation costs.
hildy89: (bring it on)
*sighs* Well, one less reason to watch Wimbledon... but I guessed that when the draw came out. When your second round opponent is the three time champion, it won't be a fun day at the office. Poor Tim, first he had to play most of his semis against Pete Sampras and then once Sampras was retired, in came Federer. But it's really hard to dislike Federer. He just makes tennis look so damn easy.

The rains have stopped momentarily here. But we haven't stopped plans for building that ark. Flooding is still a possibility in places. These are the fond days I remember my old cul-de-sac that used to flood during every rainstorm... and thank god I live elsewhere.
hildy89: (eighth doctor)
So the rains abated long enough for everyone to go into work today. From what I heard, my section of the Orange line had some of the longest waits for trains. The usual places are flooding like demons.

It's Wimbledon season, so I yet again turn into a turncoat (or redcoat even) and root for the home team. I don't know why. I like American tennis players well enough. Part of me is quite sad to see Agassi finally retiring. The BBC's play-by-plays online have been quite snarky beyond the usual forehands and backhands and service games. "Play is briefly disrupted when a ball bouces into proceedings from another court. Safe to say that it was out then." Things like that, including the usual barbs at the supporters in the stands. Pithy (or "earthy" I heard yesterday) bunch those Brits.

Certain fiends might want to check out [livejournal.com profile] deepgenrewr. Constance Ash is doing a multi-part essay on vampires and their relationship to genre. She just posted the second part.

Er, and I might have committed a drabble for [livejournal.com profile] dw100. I blame my other fandoms. If I can't bring Atlantis to the Doctor, then I might as well go the other way around, right? Right.
hildy89: (glasses)
Thank god Compuserve has put its forums online. Throughout the waiting on Katrina, I was reminded of a couple I knew from my old days in Anne McCaffrey fandom who lived in New Orleans. I haven't been in contact with them for awhile. Fortunately I was able to learn they'd evacuated to Baton Rogue. They appear to be fine. Their house appears to have some roof damage. I hope the damage won't be too extensive. Their library was something to behold, making my collection look tiny by comparison. (I know, it's a dumb thing to worry about in the grand scheme of things...)

The summer is nearly over, which means it's time for a hearty cry of "Tennis, anyone?" The US Open has started in Flushing Meadow, dumping seeds left and right. American Express is going to look really silly with their "Andy's Mojo" campaign now that Roddick is out.
hildy89: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] sventhelost is evil. She mentioned the Firefox extension Stumble Upon wherein you can channel surf different websites. You can program it with some of your general preferences. Some websites are nifty keen like the Hubble Heritage Project and then there's playing 20 Questions with Lord Vader. It's Flash animation and he basically tries to read your mind. Obviously I am not a Jedi, because he saw through my ruse. Clearly I'm a simple rebel. Or maybe a mercenary. Ah me.

I watched the highlights of Live 8 concert. Just looking at the concert locations and realizing how much has changed just in 20 years. I really wish someone could have politely knocked Mariah off the London stage. No one would have missed her. Pink Floyd was back together and sounded pretty damn good.

And I proved that I really can't pick Wimbledon winners. I honestly thought Davenport would pull it off this year, but Venus surprised everyone.
hildy89: (Default)
I heard from my parents. They returned after their evacuation for Frances. The house held up fine with no apparent damage, just some tree and shingle debris out in the yards from other houses. No cable connection or phone line for the computer, but all things considered, they came out great. Hopefully Ivan will not be either crazy or terrible.

Frances moved up the coast, dumping lots of rain everywhere. It probably did rain here but I wasn't really aware of it, not like Isabel. The rain did interrupt my days of tennis with the US Open. Okay, we get that the Williams-Capriati match on Tuesday night was a big deal, but could you please stop reshowing it at every opportunity? Leave it to the judges yet again to take the sport out of the athletes' hands with a blown call... or several. (Sad thing about the new "Wimbledon" movie, I'm probably going to be so sick of tennis by the time it comes out. And if the movie makers are true to form from "Four Weddings and a Funeral" and "Notting Hill" group, I'll love all the characters, except the leading lady. Why can't they write/cast likable American women?)
hildy89: (sidonia)
Tennis has taken over my nights again for the US Open. Whatever people will say about Wimbledon's "all white" dress code, at least players look appropriate. Some of the outfits lately are veering widely towards the "What the heck are they wearing?" category like Serena's denim skirt two piece last night. And the odd thing is I'm fine with plainer costumes for skating. Back to boys in shorts... ahem, yes.

The temp agency ticked me off today. I called to contact my regular person, only to discover she was no longer with the company. Gee, I guess I shouldn't wonder why I haven't heard anything in over a week. And the group I had interviewed with is still going through resumes. I'm not sure if that's a good sign or a bad one right one.
hildy89: (Default)
Ok, I admit it, come every July, I'm likely to be watching the Wimbledon tennis championships on television. Part of it is the "background noise" theory -- tennis matches are almost as good as golf for having playing in the background. And probably because the U.S. men seem to be disappearing left and right, I've found myself rooting for the Brit. And for the last couple of years, I've been sorely disappointed. And today I was again.

It must be rough, though, holding the hopes of a nation on your back to win *their* tournament. Wimbledon is so quintessentially British, everything nice and proper, from the sudden rains to all white outfits. And the knock on Tim Henman was he was too British, too nice and quiet and "okay" tennis player. Some of it seems justified. He serves for accuracy these days, not speed or velocity. So when other men are cranking it up to 110-120 mph, he's shutting it down. Makes no sense to me, especially if you're playing against someone who can rifle it back at you.

Oh well, maybe Serena will surprise her sister Venus again. I guess I'm a sucker for the underdog story.

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