a moralizing Hollywood ending
Wednesday, April 17 2013
Using the garden fork, I spaded the part of the inter-tomato-patch garden not occupied by perennial asparagus and then sewed a combination of lettuce and arugula seeds. As with Brassicas, both lettuce and arugula are hardy enough to withstand the kind of frosts we're still likely to get. To keep the seeds from possibly being eaten by birds (a number of sparrows and perhaps House Finches are given to hopping around in the gardens at this time of year), I dusted the freshly-seeded soil with sandy soil from that load I'd ordered back in the autumn to fill in the garlic patch. The garlic, by the way, seems to be surging forth like all the other lilies in the yard. Some of the garlic leaves (or are they called blades?) are now as much as 10 inches tall.
Eleanor has been experiencing unusually-labored breathing of late, particularly when out in the forest. So today we took her to the Hurley vet to have her examined. We also brought Ramona along just so she wouldn't be left alone. While we were waiting for the appointment to begin, Eleanor started trembling, remembering all the times in the past when she'd been to the vet to have porcupine quills removed, lacerations stitched closed, or knee tendons repaired. As for Ramona, all she wanted to do was go across the room and meet a tiny purebred terrier who had just had $400 worth of veterinary work performed, and she was so eager to do so that she was making unusual vocalizations that sounded almost like human speech.
The vet examined Eleanor and declared that her heart and lungs sounded normal. We could do bloodwork if we wanted to be thorough, but chances were good that she was perfectly fine. Perhaps Ramona yanking on Eleanor's collar had bruised her trachea, which could account for the recent hoarseness of her barks and some part of the labored breathing. The rest just might be old age. So: Yay! Eleanor wasn't about to die!
At around dinner time there was some problem with our satellite signal (and, in any case, Jeopardy keeps getting preempted by developments in the Boston Marathon bombing story), so Gretchen and I watched a DVD instead. It was Flight, a movie about the travails of an exceptionally gifted airline pilot (played by Denzel Washington) who also happens to be an incorrigible alcoholic and drug addict. Gretchen and I really enjoyed it, up until, that is, the final ten minutes or so. The characters, even the ones who were only on screen briefly, were complicated and quirky, and it was hard to predict what was going to happen next. But then that final ten minutes came and it was as if someone stepped in to slap a moralizing Hollywood ending on it and land the plane (I'm using that as a metaphor for the movie) in a way that injured and killed the fewest possible number of sacred cows. Any movie that relies on its chief protagonist to (and here I have to issue a mild spoiler alert) do something shocking in a courtroom isn't just going down the path of cliché, it's also committing and offense against quality cinema. Still, other than that, it was a great movie.
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