Monday, July 16, 2007

Happy Mid-July Monday
My apologies for the lack of posting lately but I have been lacking in enthusiasm. There is always much to post about but so much of what goes on is posted about eleswhere that, as I surf the blogosphere, I often see no reason for me to repeat what others have said quite well.
So I'm left with that which happens directly to me. Which I don't always gin up the verbiage to make interesting enough for posting. And I feel bad about that. Blogging requires a certain level of commitment that I haven't been putting in of late. I'll try to change that this week. That means I start the week with a collection of miscellaneous stuff. Such as...
I got honorable mention at the Wizbang caption contest. Not my best work but I flung up about three different tries in my attempt at this one. They did select the one I thought was funniest. Ah well, I'll keep trying.
I saw the new Harry Potter movie this weekend and was reasonably well diverted for two and a quarter hours. The usual good special effects (save for the CGI giant which was weak at best) and the hate they created in me for the Dolores Umbridge character (what a perfect name!) was overwhelming. I don't hate Voldemort like I hate the odious Umbridge. But I'm not the best one to give a review of any Potter as I've never read the books (and never will) and the movies leave me indifferent. Plus, it really doesn't matter what I say - the movie will make ungodly money and the fans will be happy. Good for them.
After the movie I had dinner at a restaurant called Coastal Flats which is in the mall near the theater. Very nice. I had calamari for openers. Nicely done. Not over battered, not over cooked and daubed with pepper jelly. Not the best calamari I've had lately (that would be at Clyde's restaurant) but very good. Then grilled grouper on mashed sweet potato. Delicious - again cooked perfectly with the cross-hatch of grill marks and that sweet smoke of mesquite on the fish. But the afters was the star - bread pudding a la mode. Killer hot bread pudding. I'm glad I split that with my dinner companion.
Coastal Flats is part of a series of restaurants run by an outfit called Great American Restaurants. They run my favorite local place as well, the Sweetwater Tavern. These people know the way to run a restaurant. The food is uniformly well prepared, the quality is high, the menus are to the point but with sufficient variety to cover any taste. And their basket of breads is just insanely good. Hard to go wrong at any one of their restaurants.
Below is a post about my neighbors. The good ones. So what do I find out almost immediately after posting about them. They'll be moving. He works for a construction company and the project he's been working on is coming to an end. And he's been offered another project in Atlanta. It won't be until something like January but still: nuts. Can't the lousy neighbors move?
Tonight Fox serves up another steaming helping of "Hell's Kitchen" about which I threatened to post below. I'll hold off anything specific until tomorrow. But this season of the show is bugging me. We still have plenty of Gordon going all William Wallace over the sorry contestant's asses. And we see all the screw-ups that the cooks make. But at least this year we aren't being shown the competencies of the cooks. These people have to have some talent or they wouldn't have been chosen to appear. Bravo's "Top Chef" which is low-key compared to "Hell's" show us the contestants making dishes which are quite complex and demonstrative of their talent. Gordon and company need to give us a little insight into the positive for a change.
All for now. More sweepings from the cobwebbed corners of my mind later.

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