Hey, Baldie!

  • I just realized that I can’t remember the last time I saw a film in a theater that wasn’t a superhero film, a Star Wars/Trek film, a James Bond film, or a Harry Potter film.  Maybe it was “Ready Player One”.  I decry all the superhero films and sequalism, and the audiences who won’t risk watching anything new, but it looks like I’m contributing to the problem.  Then again, I hardly ever encounter any marketing for other films.
  • Looking for a reason to keep my CBS All Access membership now that season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery has finished, I watched the first two episodes of Instinct.  They never used the words “consulting detective”, but it is clearly intended to be a knock-off of Elementary.  I wasn’t impressed, and the writing is the problem.  They try to fit too much into a single episode.  The character arc of one episode would take Elementary a half or even a whole season to savor.  Also, Alan Cumming’s character is very lighthearted, nearly a clown (to a large extent, that is Alan Cumming).  He plays across from Bojana Novakovic, whose character barely has any personality by comparison.  It all comes together to make Instinct feel like it has no depth.  A cheap cardboard cut-out of Elementary.
  • Speaking of Elementary, CBS claims they are about to air season 7, yet it appears that season 6 was never made available on CBS All Access.  Perhaps “CBS Some Access” would be a better name for their streaming service.  Season 6 is available on Hulu, so I watched it there.  I have cancelled CBS All Access, until another season of Discovery comes out.
  • I read Gingerbread.  Substantial portions of it are written in the present tense, which generally irritates me.  Relating a story as if it has happened should be done in the past tense.  The only form of fiction that present tense is good for is netsex.  This is the third book written this way that my SFF book club has sprung on me.  Carefully looking ahead, two of the next three books are that way, also.  I have decided to boycott them.  I pushed through Gingerbread, but now I’m done putting up with this.  Is this a new trend in publishing?  Or are the people running the book club following some bias that leads them to these?  (They’ve also been picking many books that are speculative fiction, but aren’t SFF — like this one.)  I almost didn’t go to the book club meeting for this book, because I didn’t think I wanted to talk about it, but it turned out to be a pretty good discussion, so I’m glad I went.
  • I shaved my head.  I had been planning to for decades.  My father’s bald spot finally caught up with me.  Of all the places to lose your hair, that spot at the back of your head is the only one that seems ugly and degrading to me (probably because that’s where my father lost his hair).  I told myself I wasn’t going to do vain things like a toupee or even surgical hair replacement.  Instead, I’ve always planned to shave my head when it came time.  Well, it came time.  I was a little worried that I would have an oddly shaped head, in which case I would be disappointed by the result, but that did not turn out to be.  My scalp is quite pale now where I used to have hair — but not where my bald spot was.  I’m still trying to get the hang of shaving my head.
  • The monitor I have connected to my work laptop died.  (At a highly inconvenient moment, but when is that sort of thing ever convenient?)  It was an el cheapo Acer monitor that was at least six years old, so not terribly tragic.  I looked on Micro Center’s web site for the cheapest thing, which turned out to be another Acer monitor for $75, and then I went to go get it.  Luckily, they had a demo unit hooked up, because wow was it awful, mainly because it was super washed out, with the blacks nothing like black at all.  I’m not using this monitor for photos or anything, just the usual office plus system administration type tasks, but it was so bad that I knew it would grate on my nerves every time I looked at it.  I started looking at the other inexpensive monitors in the story, and I ended buying a $100 LG monitor that is actually quite good.  Evidently, IPS has become completely affordable.  It looks much nicer than the one I had before, and I don’t mind paying a little extra, because I’ll be looking at this display for several hours each day.