Entry for July 02, 2008: Catching up

I'm still catching up on work, gaming, e-mail, and blogs after my recent vacation in Vermont. Congratulations to my niece Jessica on the birth of her second son Elijah! I also hope that my mother's side of the family in the Philippines is able to recover after Typhoon Frank, and my thoughts are with sick relatives in both Janice's and my families.

After a long workweek, we were expecting to host some of her family, but they were delayed by illness. So, on Saturday, 21 June 2008, Janice and I ended up going into Boston by ourselves. We went to the Phantom Gourmet Barbecue Beach Party in City Hall Plaza. As I've mentioned before, the local television show is a favorite of ours, and the food at the festival didn't disappoint.

From there, we waddled to the Boston Common, where we browsed among the Cultural Survival Bazaar, which featured fair-trade goods (a progressive political and socioeconomic movement that I support), more food, and performers from around the world.

After that, Janice and I enjoyed the summer weather and walked down Newbury Street, stopping at favorite haunts such as The Fairy Shop, Newbury Comics, Borders Books, and The Compleat Strategist. I'd be lying if I said we left empty-handed. From there, we caught the Green Line of the "T" to the Woodland Station and drove back to Needham Heights, Massachusetts.

I must note the passing of author Robert Lynn Asprin, who is perhaps best known for his "Myth Adventures" comedic fantasy books. I enjoyed his work as editor of the gritty "Thieves' World" anthologies. In addition, Janice and I will have to rewatch our DVDs of late comedian George Carlin, whose profane observations amused many for decades. Joining the roster of those who have died too soon, including comic book artists Mike Wieringo and Michael Turner, is Stargate SG1 actor Don S. Davis.

As I've noted previously, even after the regular television season (truncated by the writers' strike) has ended, I've been enjoying a number of shows, including Doctor Who, Spectacular Spider-Man, Robin Hood, and Masterpiece: Mystery. Upon reflection, most of what I've been watch lately is either British or based on comic books!

Janice and I have been pleasantly surprised by Middleman, which is based on a comic book. The live-action genre comedy reminds me of Men In Black, with the paranormal investigations of The X-Files, the witty banter and parodies of Kim Possible, and the slacker geek cred of recent shows such as Chuck and Reaper. The female protagonist is both believable and intelligent, the situations are both familiar and absurd, and some of the jokes are rather adult for ABC Family.

Even as I'm looking forward to the half-season premieres of Psych, Avatar: the Last Airbender, and Star Wars: Clone Wars, not to mention assorted summer movies, I've made room for the fun Middleman in my viewing schedule (it's on Monday nights). See also my avatar above.

Speaking of scheduling, Damon F.P., Steve M.R., and I have been organizing a celebration for all of our cohort who are turning 40 this year. It will be in New York in early August. This coming weekend, Janice and I will be hosting some of her family from Upstate New York for Independence Day celebrations in Needham.

Coming soon: Vermont vacation report, gaming resumes, and comic book catch-up!