Yet Another Journal

Nostalgia, DVDs, old movies, television, OTR, fandom, good news and bad, picks, pans,
cute budgie stories, cute terrier stories, and anything else I can think of.

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» Friday, April 03, 2015
A Quiet Friday

Since 2011, I have been taking Good Friday off to observe some spiritual time. (I tried just taking the afternoon off in 2010, but I barely made it home in time after working for four hours.) As a Catholic we're supposed to observe silence between noon and three, which is the time Jesus spent on the Cross. Sadly, these days, if I'm silent, I'm asleep. {wry grin} So I observe in other ways.

Meanwhile, the morning is made for mundanity: getting eight hours sleep, having breakfast, taking Tucker on his walk, and doing chores: sweeping the kitchen floor, vacuuming the upper story, cleaning the hall bath. Right before noon, I had something to eat, and then sat down to do some reading and listening. I began with yesterday's and today's Mass readings on Laudate, and then eagerly turned on the BBC Lent Talks I have been hoarding since Ash Wednesday. Each year they do a series of six talks with a theme, this year's which was "Performance." I especially enjoyed the first two, the first by James Runcie, who wrote the Grantchester mysteries, in which he equated the Mysteries of the Passion with a real mystery story, and the second by Kate Saunders, who talked about being an Anglo-Catholic.

The very last Talk was by musical conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner, discussing Bach's St. John and St. Matthew Passions, so I put that on after the talks were completed, from a performance on YouTube, and read The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything. I'm enjoying this book, especially talking about how you can feel the love of God when close to nature, or with your family; you don't need to be in church.

It's like this afternoon. It was a blessing of quiet and serenity.

James stayed quite late at work last night, so he was home about 3:30. I had already walked Tucker again—he was really good between noon and three, except for a couple of barks—and was dressed to go out. Since he was early, we decided to have dinner at Golden Corral. Going to have to keep away from this place until I turn 60; dinner here is much too expensive anymore. Did get a nice variety of meat: steak, pork pot roast, dark meat turkey, chicken, popcorn shrimp, and seafood salad.

James wasn't feeling well, so after a short stop at Publix, we just came home, and he ended up lying down for a while. I watched Doctor Who (the second two part of "The Keeper of Traken") and read a little while until Doctor Simon Locke came on. RetroTV announced way back at the end of last year that they were going to start showing Police Surgeon in the second quarter of 2015, and I was absolutely gobsmacked to discover on Monday that they were showing the series predecessor, Doctor Simon Locke, as well. Locke's gone down in TV annals as one of the first original programming results of the Prime Time Access Rule as well as a mediocre show in which what was going on behind the scenes was more interesting than the series itself. It was originally conceived as a series about a young doctor (Sam Groom) joining the country practice of an older doctor (Jack Albertson) and their clashing medical methods. Instead Groom's antagonist became the town sheriff (Len Birman) and Albertson was reduced to playing the crusty old doctor figure. The show was also shot on the cheap, not just on videotape, but providing no dressing facilities for the actors. We're not talking about plush dressing rooms here; they didn't even provide trailers for them, so that the actors were changing costumes out behind trees and bushes, sometimes in frigid weather. Scenes that were not quite correct were not being re-shot. Albertson, an Oscar and Tony winner, was very conscious of the show not being up to snuff and finally walked out on his contract.

At that point, since the show had low ratings, the producers just moved Locke back to the city to become...go figure...a police surgeon. Television in 1971 had just swept away all its Westerns and cornball comedies and pretty much was doctors/lawyers/police all the time. I watched Police Surgeon for about a year, until Len Birman left, and dismissed it as a bore and quit watching.

So after all this time...I'm still enjoying Doctor Simon Locke. The filming is mainly abysmal, there are many clunky lines and/or clunky performances, Jack Albertson is definitely not happy and it shows. But...put Locke up against any sort of reality television or totalitarian dystopia or endless zombies from a asshat cable channel who will remain nameless, and I will take Locke, warts and all, any day.

Just wish it was on a channel I could record!

At least I can update my Locke web page!

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