Friday, April 30, 2010

stage fright

Yesterday was the kindergarten school play. I was more worried about it than excited, as the kid has exhibited extreme stage fright in the past. I wouldn't say I had low expectations—honestly if she decided to sit it out it would have been O.K. by me, but I didn't want to entertain any expectations. I just wanted her to know that I was there, and I love her, and she needn't be afraid.

It turns out any fears that I may have been harboring evaporated, as the kid said all her lines on cue, had a great time on stage, and a great time offstage watching her friends do their plays. She'll never know how proud (and relieved) she made me when her jitters earlier in the week turned out to be for naught.

Complete non-sequiter: Hitchcock's walk-on in Stage Fright. I love Hitch.


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Thursday, April 29, 2010

get your motor runnin' . . .

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

six year-old infomercial outrage

My daughter was making some angry-sounding noise last night while I was making dinner. I peeked around the corner from the kitchen and heard her loudly objecting to a commercial on television. She seemed genuinely upset, exclaiming that, "It couldn't protect you from a flood—it's not an umbrella!" I finally figured out that she was yelling at an insurance commercial.

I had flipped on PBS Sprout, a channel we hadn't watched in a while, while I made dinner, figuring that it would be something quiet and fun for her to watch, as we both wound down from our day of kindergarten and work. Sprout usually features more gentle cartoons like Make Way for Noddy, Caillou and Kipper. What I had forgotten was that it wasn't all cartoons any more, Sprout plays (lots of) commercials. And not just commercials, but the As Seen on TV commercials.

How had I forgotten that this channel was responsible for our owning a Pancake Puffs griddle? The kid had become obsessed with the Pancake Puffs ad two Xmases ago, so Santa succumbed. I am of two minds about all of this. On the one hand, I think it's pretty shady of any kids-oriented network to run the hard-pitch ads. On the other hand, they aren't running ads for all of the brightly colored multi-part toys.

Advertising and marketing is everywhere. Kids know who Ronald McDonald is before ever eating a McNugget. It takes real research and effort to avoid Disney and other franchise branding on everything from pajamas to underwear. I try to keep the product placement merchandise to a minimum, but I'm not going to "protect" her from the world she is growing up in by trashing a brand, like my mother did with me and Disney. Still not sure why my mom hate(d)(s) Disney so much. She said she saw Snow White when she was a kid and the witch scared her, but that can't be it, can it? All I know is the only way I ever got to see a Disney flick was if I was going with a friend. Mom wouldn't take us.

I guess the most interesting thing about this, is that although we have cable television and primarily watch a lot of commercial-free programs or our own dvds, my daughter still responds to commercials, as strongly, or more than, the show she is actually watching. The Space Bag and Pillow Pets commercials mesmerize her. When I was her age there was still only one channel, the public television station, that was commercial-free. And cartoons were on Saturday mornings. of course i can probably still recite the speecy spicy meatball commercial . . .





So I guess I shouldn't be surprised that in a world with many more channels, more choices, her responses may be amped up a little too. But it makes me think maybe tomorrow for her little bit of T.V. we'll switch to ad-free (still I think) NickJr or Boomerang . . .

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

the devil is in the details

When we were reminsicing about Italy this weekend I thought about one of my favorite places in Florence (a city I could happily live in tomorrow), Santa Maria Novella. Of course the Ghirlandaio frescoes are amazing, but what has always captured my fancy are frescoes in the Spanish Chapel, a site easily missed, as you have to walk outside and through the cloister to get to it.

Descent of Christ to Limbo by Andrea di Bonaiuto

I love the everyday feeling of this detail from one of the frescoes. It may be the apocalypse, with rocks burning around them, but these three devils are taking a moment to chat, water cooler style.
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Monday, April 26, 2010

school lunches . . . really?

A threat to national security?

While I am completely in support of the nation serving up healthier fare to kids in schools, a group of retired military personnel calling themselves "Mission: Readiness" is trying to blame the increasing number of overweight and out-of-shape teenagers on school lunches—not so sure about that.

We are what we eat to a certain extent and I am currently testing that theory with my sugar-reduction challenge. I do believe kids and the entire country drink too much soda, diet or otherwise. It's all crap and it causes weight gain and contributes to who knows how many other adverse health side effects down the line (obesity, diabetes, etc., etc.) But to rest it all at the door of the albeit crummy offerings at school cafeterias—nuh uh.


If you want to target schools for their lackluster non-nutritional lunches, how about also getting them for slacking off on promoting the other side of good health—physical exercise? This country is very much about sports and achievement, but the focus is squarely on the winners, the ones who make the team. Is good exercise stressed for the rest who might not be a star basketball, football or baseball player? Is it stressed evenly between boys and girls? We rely more and more on computers to do our work at home and at school. Are students being encouraged to get up and away from the computer screens, to take a walk, a jog, get some fresh air?

And what about the parents of the kids who are just "too fat" for the military? How many jumbo liters of soda are in their fridges? How many times a week do they all hit a fast food joint for a meal? Do they dine together or separately?
Silhouettes and waist circumferences represent...Image via Wikipedia

I'm not trying to cast blame on anyone, really, but I think it's foolish to focus solely on the one meal a day that is served away from home. The vegetables on the menu may consist solely of french fries and ketchup—hey kids, two servings! If that is the case, I agree, that is sad. With cutbacks happening everywhere, the traditional lunch lady many of us grew up with who parceled out sloppy joes and baked beans may now be just a figure of myth. Most food served at school cafeterias these days seems to be either hot dogs and hamburgers or of the frozen dinner variety. Most kids are unlikely to get access to the other extreme, a chef-inspired lunch.

Focus on the quality of life in this country is unfortunately skewed. There is so much emphasis on money, money, money and all that it can buy a person—status, travel, beautiful clothes and surroundings, the latest gadgets. Not everyone can afford luxuries, but we all can eat. Food is the one thing that anyone can indulge and overindulge in. And what tastes "richer' than something sweet, or bubbly, or cheesy, or fried?

What seems almost comical to me is that this study is being presented with an attitude—"Mission: Readiness" is trying to scare the schools into serving better fare so that the kids can all be enlist- and draft-worthy. Shouldn't we try to inspire better eating habits and better health because it's better for all of us? Talk about inspiring kids to want to pack on the pounds. Who knew that might be a "quality" that makes you ineligible for service?
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Sunday, April 25, 2010

salvia fritta


from hynesghpstudio on flickr


Yesterday we had a great family visit, and one of the topics (of course, we're Italian) was reminiscing over fabulous food eaten on Italian journeys, specifically Piedmontese cuisine. I'll tell a truffle story later, but today I want to re-savor one of the most delicious appetizers I have ever had, salvia fritta, fried sage leaves.

Cruising the internets I have found several recipes. They seem so incredibly easy to prepare I wonder why it never occurred to me to try before. I guess that the occasion where I had them was a special one, in a very beautiful restaurant in Torino, and they marked the beginning of a series of wonderful courses, so I had always associated them with this sort of eating, which is far from my daily eating experience.

But there is truly no reason not to make any meal special, so if I can fit them somehow onto the menu in future I most certainly will.

Salvia Fritta
Wash several large sage leaves in cold water, drain, blot on paper towels.
Beat one or two large eggs with a pinch of salt.
Mix dried bread crumbs in a large dish for the coating (some recipes I found use flour and water rather than eggs and bread crumbs, some no batter at all)
Heat some olive oil in a pan.
Dip each leaf, first in the egg, then in the breadcrumbs, coating both sides. Place in hot oil and fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towel.
Serve and enjoy!
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Saturday, April 24, 2010

sugar dream

The other night I had a dream that the father of one of my daughter's friends was walking around with a plate full of cupcakes and he wasn't even offering me one! And later I was in a store, looking everywhere for a hostess lemon pie . . . I didn't realize how quickly my no suger-added-policy would affect my unconscious brain. Day four. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps . . .
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Friday, April 23, 2010

the end of project runway


Emilio wuz robbed. I love Seth Aaron, and am happy for him and for his family, but the "good guy" winning, was still . . . unfair. The judges telling Emilio that he made a clothing "line" as opposed to a collection. Oh really? And what were Seth Aaron's storm troopers and color-blind Mila's 60's chicks? Those were collections?

Emilio may not have been the most loved by Tim Gunn or the audience. He was cocky. He was a diva. He's a fashion designer, big woop. He also consistently made the best clothes, bar none, except my other fave, Jay, who was completely overlooked and inexplicably dissed.

All of the drama is way too reminiscent of my actual days at Parsons. I started watching Project Runway because of that connection, and because it was a show about creativity, the designers' challenges structured much like the weekly assignments I used to have to muddle through at art school. But the show, post-Siriano, has gone downhill. I swore off it last year, only to be sucked in this year mid-season by one of Jay's spiffy pleated skirt ensembles. But I think this is really it. I quit you, Project Runway. Your "competition" is a farce, as so many of the designers actually make it (off camera) to fashion week (and BTW - Anthony's designs were fun and fabulous - just like him), and your pandering to whatever you think will make "good television," rather than great design is too much. The half-hour after-show was especially hateful, as Tim Gunn showed clips of the exhausted designers and models bitchily tearing each other apart in their "confessionals" and then asked them, "What do you think about ___ calling you a ___?" Give me a break. I quit you, Project Runway.

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

into each generation . . .

. . . a Slayer is born. One girl in all the world, a Chosen One. One born with the strength and skill to fight the vampires, to stop the spread of their evil and the swell of their numbers.

The kid has seen parts of Something Blue, The Witch, Teacher's Pet and Welcome to the Hellmouth. She doesn't like the "scary parts" but loves the Scoobies, especially Xander, her "favorite of the boys."

I wasn't sure at first if she should see any of it, even if BtVS was one of my all-time favorite shows. But then I thought back to watching scary black and white vampire flicks on Chiller Theater with my movie-buff dad. I would cover my eyes at the scary parts and my dad would tell me when I was safe to look at the screen again - of course at the scariest moment when the vampire was about to put the bite on his victim.

Ahhh . . . tradition . . .



Buffy & Spike


Buffy the Vampire Slayer "The blond boy is Spike"



Xander & a mouse


Xander and a mouse
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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

should i stay or should i go?

This is the first episode of LOST this season where we see everyone, all of Jacob's candidates, on the Island and Sideways since the pilot, LA X.





Jack's ping-ponging—it kinda sucks when you're a follower, doesn't it Jack? He's listening to Smokey, talking to Hurley, Kate and Claire, but ultimately decides to go with Sawyer's plan to join Widmore & Co. by boat.
"Nice job, Doc."
And then there's Claire.
"Claire's nuts" I LOVE YOU SAWYER!!! "You, me, Jack, Hurley, Sun, and that pilot who looks like he stepped off the set of a Burt Reynolds movie."
At first I thought this might be a set-up for when they were in the canoe and were shot at in an earlier season, but it's the Elizabeth, Libby's boat, which she gave to Desmond to sail around the world. Desmond is still helping . . .

Kate gets Claire on the boat with the power of love, telling her what she needs to hear, that she, Kate, never should have raised Aaron—it should have been Claire. Sawyer and Kate are sticking together, it seems, on the Island and Sideways.
Claire: "He finds out we're gone, he's gonna be mad."
I hate to admit that I'm loving Jack these days, but I really am. I don't think I've liked him this much since 815 went down. He is open, willing to listen to others, but more importantly, willing to listen to himself. Sawyer tells him to take a (flying) leap of faith (in the ocean.) And he does, but not before apologizing to Sawyer for Juliet's death. Jack hasn't reached Desmond's level of calm, purpose and acceptance, but he's on his way.  Hurley's going to be pissed at Sawyer making Jack take a dive, but sums up the Widmore crew quite nicely, "People trying to kill us again."
Jack: "Doesn't feel right. The Island isn't done with us yet." 
Jack and Sawyer are always at loggerheads. Jack wants to stay, Sawyer wants to leave—sound like any(two)body(s) we know who favor monochromatic wardrobes? At the moment Jack and Sawyer are both painted in shades of gray.





As far as Smokey is concerned, Jack is The Last Recruit of the episode title. Is he also the only recruit in Smokey's eyes?
Claire to Jack: "You joined him the minute you let him talk to you."
Not sure I buy that, but I can see why she does. Smokey "admits" to Jack that he was impersonating his dead father, White Rabbit Cristian. Smokey's such a lying liar from liarville it's hard to listen to anything he says. Actions, like temple massacres for instance, still speak louder than words.





And super hero strength carrying Jack to safety aside, Smokey seems to be losing his touch. He's  unable to communicate with the silent, scribbling Sun. He also seems unable to tell what really happened between Desmond and Zombie Sayid.

Smokey can't read a zombie's mind . . .
"So what did he offer ya?" 
Desmond hit Sayid where it counts, even for a zombie. He asked him if he can tell his true love what he did (blow away Desmond, or didn't he?) to bring her back. Is Sayid still savable? is Claire? They both seemed to take some positive leaps of faith tonight, leaps away from Smokey's tendrils. Sideways, Miles has a recording of Jabroni Sayid on the security cam, a killer no matter what world he is in. Saying a quick farewell to Nadia before he tried to escape the police, Sayid falls (trips) literally for one of the oldest tricks in the book—a string (hose) pulled across a space. Sawyer: "You're under arrest."

Sideways Locke is with Ben, on the way to the hospital and Dr. Jack Shephard. Where coincidentally, Sun and Jin are as well. Sun is terrified (in subtitles) at the sight of Locke, "It's him!" But the couple gets good news Sideways (Sun and the baby are O.K.) and on the Island they get their long overdue reunion, although Jin's promise to never leave Sun again sounded ominous to me, even before Widmore's goons appeared.
"My name is John"
I have been wondering lately when exactly Smokey took over Locke. He told Jack that it happened when Jack brought Locke's dead body to the Island. He also said some very unkind, even if they were somewhat true, things about our favorite fan of all things Island, John Locke. But was Locke just a Smokey chump? Was he so easily duped and led? Or did he actually see Jacob that night in the cabin? Was he the ultimate candidate for a time? is he The Candidate that will be featured in the next episode?

It's tempting to surmise that when Locke was able to get up and walk after the plane crash it was because of Smokey, not Jacob, or the healing powers of the Island. But that idea doesn't jibe with his travels off Island courtesy of the donkey wheel. I guess I think that Locke was always Locke, but was being influenced by Smokey, much like Ben was. The bigger question is: Is Smokey now being influenced by Locke? With all of the candidates having flashes of their parallel lives, maybe Locke can flash into Smokey. Maybe that's what Desmond is enabling. Smokey hasn't gone all smokey in quite a while. Maybe he can't anymore. Maybe that's why he had to pick up Jack and carry him, chase Sun on foot, push Desmond down a well, rather than go on a smokey rampage . . .





Sideways, Jacob stand-in Desmond is with Claire; he's guiding her towards floor 15 where lawyer Ilana (!) has arranged a meeting with half-brother Jack and half-sister Claire. And of course Jack gets interrupted, mid emotional family reunion, getting the call to operate on Locke. Which brings us back to . . . the beginning? The end? Almost? We get a week off, so that's plenty more time to debate and come up with some more crackpot theories . . .


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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

unsweet



This weekend my icegrandesoychai from the ubiquitous Starbucks didn't taste right. It was too sweet. It used to be my regular order, but I hadn't had it in a while, opting instead for the greentealemonade—unsweet. I guess my taste-buds knew better than I—it's time to cut out the sweet stuff.

I completely cut out sugar for a few months a few years back and the pounds just fell off. I wasn't exactly trying to lose weight at the time—it was more of a "health deal" I had made with my acupuncturist to try and ease my allergies and tummy issues, but it was a perq. Between that regimen and regular acupuncture sessions I seemed to discover my ideal weight. Over the past year or so, daily desserts have been creeping back into our routine, most recently evidenced by my eating a few cookies after the kid went to bed last night. So I have been gaining, bit by bit, and my allergies, etc. haven't been getting any better. Reading all over the internets about the evidence piling on top of already-known evidence about the evils of high fructose corn syrup and things just got too sticky-sweet. The truth is, for us all, that if you have it in the house, you'll eat it. So no more cookies at home. Dessert, if we have it at all, will be distinctly in the form of a special treat, rather than a dietary staple. Sorry, kid. You may hate this now, but you'll thank me in the long run.

Not sure how long I can keep this up, or when I will slip off the wagon, but I am going to attempt a thirty-day no-extra-sugar-added self-challenge. I'm not a maniac. I know there are sugars in bread and sauces if we happen to eat out. And I am not going to become a label lunatic and exorcise the Wheat Thins or the pretzel sticks. But no dessert, no cookies, no soda, no candy, no icegrandesoychai is completely doable for thirty days for me if I stay strong, stay disciplined.





I'd also like to note that I will not "cheat" with that abomination known as diet soda. I have never consumed it (really, never), and I sure as hell won't be starting now. I have always been leery of the so-called sugar alternatives—saccharine, nutrasweet (the devil), etc. I know they are a boon for some who can't consume real sugar, but not for me. I'm doubtful of television commercials that claim that their soda has zero calories, citing its pseudoscience with bold, bright and skinny colors. The possibility of zero calories may, although remote, be true. But your (read my) body is going to react to the soda just as if it was made the good old fashioned way, with cocaine and cane sugar—and it won't taste anywhere near as good as that, so why bother? The only way to wean oneself from needing the sugary jolt is to stop partaking of the sugary jolt. At least that's how it works for me. I'm not saying I'll not miss it, or won't go through withdrawal, or wish I chose a different thirty days, but c'est la vie. I'll look better, feel better—at least I hope so. I'll keep you posted. But for now, make mine unsweet.
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Monday, April 19, 2010

i figured it out . . . well, not exactly . . .

LOST is such a wacky show that it gets into your brain and you get "flashes" that make you think may have solved it all. Or maybe that's just me. Anyway, this week, alchemy suddenly seemed key to me. Jacob said that the Island is a "cork," after all . . .


Could Jacob and Smokey be two parts of the same entity? Is that who those two boys are running around the Island? Lostpedia confirms "they" are played by one actor, but one is blonde, one brunet . . .


In alchemy, The Androgyne is a symbol of alchemical balance, Male & Female; Black & White. Remind you of a certain set of scales, anyone?





Additional random thoughts:

Island:
Michael told Hurley that he was one of the "whisperers," and was bound to the Island because of what he had done (murder.) The whisperers may truly be the Others, for real this time. There are so many of the Losties who have done bad things—does this mean that we will soon be seeing once again Ana Lucia, Rousseau, and dare I hope, Mr. Eko? Sawyer and Kate, etc. better not bite it on the Island, or a job opening as whisperer looms large in their future . . .

Desmond and Smokey at the well:
Desmond: "You read my mind." That is Smokey's forte, and I think he knew as soon as Desmond said he was John Locke that Desmond was lying and on Team Widmore. But Desmond had Smokey sussed, too. And Smokey wasn't reading Desmond as easily later: "Why aren't you afraid?" Even though Desmond was wearing a red shirt in that scene, I am confident he will make it through until the last episode. He might still be the ultimate sacrifice, however. Misleading promo editing aside, I actually fear that Zombie Sayid may bite the big one Tuesday. We'll see.

Sideways:
Desmond knows he has a son named Charlie. I don't think there are "two" Desmonds, just like there aren't "two" Eloises. Desmond knows what's what, and can trip through time, Sideways and Island-ways.

"Whoosh" transitions:
In every episode this season we have heard the sound of a plane when making a transition from the Island to the Sideways world. That is, every episode except the Locke-centered one. In that episode the scene transitions were the sounds of the smoke monster. I have been convinced for a while that Sideways is Smokey's dream come true, and it is what will happen if he escapes the Island, if "evil is on the loose." And more than just that, but I believe that his form of "escape" is to live as John Locke, happily ever after, with Helen. I think the makers of LOST leave us breadcrumbs from time to time and the Smokey "whoosh"sound effects, since they have never been repeated, seem like a huge clue to me . . .



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Sunday, April 18, 2010

a trip to the arboretum

I have lots of organizing and sorting to do at home, but it didn't seem right to dive right into that without a little bit of a break on a sunny (and a little chilly) day . . .

The lilacs were starting and smelled amazing . . .

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The Capitol columns are always a favorite . . .

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And inspire the use of fun iPhone photo filters . . .

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The azalea maze was so inviting . . .

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SO many beautiful azaleas . . .

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

duck ramp

Stuff is just pouring off the trees, being blown by the wind. I now know the taste of pollen—bitter, metallic. No ducks climb up the ramp. The fountain is off, the water still.





Friday, April 16, 2010

the redbuds are coming, the redbuds are coming . . .

Actually these fabulous trees are starting to wane.

They replaced the cherry blossoms and the dogwoods and lilacs are now replacing them.

But they are still gorgeous, purple/pink flowering trees. Spring, spring, spring.


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Thursday, April 15, 2010

girl power?



I don't want to squash a young artist, but every time I hear this song by Orianthi on the radio I am befuddled. It at first sounds like it's supposed to be rock 'n' roll girl power, but the message, the message . . .

She may sound  strong and angry, but she is trading one guy's (admittedly negative) opinion about her:
According to you
I'm stupid
I'm useless
I can't do anything right
For another guy's (more positive) one:
But according to him
I'm beautiful, incredible
He can't get me out of his head
According to him
I'm funny, irresistible
Everything he ever wanted
How is that girl power? Or rebellious? It sure ain't feminist. Why is she defining herself by what some guy thinks about her?
Everything is opposite
I don't feel like stopping it
So baby tell me what I got to lose
He's into me for everything I'm not
According to you
Please continue to strap on the guitar and cry out to the wilderness. It's a good impulse.

I need to feel appreciated
like I'm not hated
Oh, no
Why can't you see me through his eyes?
It's too bad you're making me dizz-ay


But throw away the need to define yourself through other's eyes. Kick ass. Be yourself.

Now that's rock 'n' roll.
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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

whole lotta love

Everybody Loves Hugo. What's not to love where Hugo's concerned? The real Pierre Chang (not the puppet) introduces Man of the Year Hurley. His mom is still harping, complaining that he can't get a girlfriend. What's a multi-bajillionaire supposed to do? She sets him up on a date where he is stood up (is the luckiest man on earth's luck about to run out?)

Hell no, here comes . . . Libby. It's love at first sight, even with her weirder than usual déjà vu story. The fact that she is physically pulled away from his table and loaded into a van destined for a mental hospital depresses our usually happy-go-very-lucky Hurley and drives him straight towards the waiting arms of a bucket of chicken, where he meets . . . Desmond, who chats him up and talks about the power of love while waiting for his order in Mr. Clucks. He shakes Hurley's hand, a la Jacob. Is the touch of Jacob love? Desmond now seems to know exactly what's going on—Sideways and on the Island. Take that, Eloise (and Smokey)! But the handshake is just that—a handshake, although it does send Hurley to the mental hospital, checkbook in hand, to bribe his way in to talk to Libby again.

Libby and Hurley have crazy sweet chemistry.  They finally get to have their picnic ("Like a date we never had"). This time, this life, Hurley remembered the blanket (and six different kinds of cheeses.) So far Hurley is the only one Sideways who appears to be blocked from glimpses of his alternate Island life. He doesn't get a Through the Looking-glass reflective moment. It doesn't seem as if he can speak to the dead Sideways, either. That is . . . until their mind-altering, flashing-before-their-eyes kiss. Desmond looks on—guardian angel, spirit guide, constant?




On the Island, Team Good Guys is still all about blowing up the plane. The moment Ilana said she was going to the Black Rock I knew she was going to go the way of Arzt, but still, it was a shock when it happened. Ben: "The Island was 'done' with Ilana." I always felt she was a red shirt, but still, RIP Ilana. We might still see her again. It's LOST, you know.

Michael appears to Hurley, not too differently from the way Smokey travels, but still . . . different. Hurley figures out that Michael is one of the "whisperers." They can't move on because of bad things that they have done. Can a cork be purgatory? I still think it's all a bit more than that . . . Michael is no longer looking for "WALLTT!!!" He wants to help his friends not die, and insists that blowing up the plane will do just that. Does that mean that Lapidus will be saved from red shirt status by virtue of his piloting ability? Hope so. Hurley believes Michael and blows up the Black Rock to protect everyone. "Dead people are more reliable than live people."




Poor Richard. He just got his mojo back and now this. The Losties split up again. Jack believes in Hurley. Jack what are you doing to me? I'm starting to love ya, dude, and it's freakin' me out. Richard, Ben and Miles set off to blow up the plane. I watched them go and was thinking, "dead, dead, dead," but upon reflection I hope that I'm wrong. Maybe they will become the left flank that comes in at the end of the battle when all looks lost and help our castaways when they need it most. That's my theory  at the moment. Hurley, Jack, Lapidus, and a still notepad-scrawling Sun are off to talk to "Locke."

At Camp Smokey Sawyer and Kate are getting sick of waiting . . . for what? Smokey says the candidates are on their way. Kate is sure that will never happen. Zombie Sayid shows up, and like a cat, wants to show Smokey the mouse he has caught for him—Desmond—tied up to a tree. Smokey pats his zombie pet on the head and sends him away, untying Desmond, who says "he has nowhere to run to." Desmond on Island seems clear with what's happening, has happened and is going to happen. Is he beyond time itself? Smokey takes Desmond to a well, one of the pockets of magnetic Island energy, apparently. On the way he and Desmond see another young boy. This time Smokey is less freaked out than he was by the blond boy he saw with Sawyer. I suspect that this kid is Smokey, as a boy. Maybe when you are so close to the power source time gets all wonky? Smokey probes and banters and then shoves Desmond into the well, a true GASP moment. But it looks like this isn't the end of my beloved Des yet. I'm still not sure he won't have to make the ultimate sacrifice before this all plays out, however.




Sideways, Desmond has some moves of his own. He waits outside the school where the substitute John Locke is teaching. Desmond believes (as I have wondered) that Smokey has substituted himself for John Locke to live out a Sideways existence off-Island. Desmond hits the gas and plows down Sideways Locke. Was Desmond trying to kill him and destroy Smokey, or is this his way to give Sideways Locke his moment of clarity? Will he now see the Island world? Not quite as nice a way to wake up from the dream as Hurley had . . .

On the Island, everybody follows Hugo, even when he has no idea where he's headed. I believe in you, dude. The good guys arrive at Locke's camp. Sun is visibly upset to see that all the Losties seem to be there, except for of course, Jin. But the big reveal moment is Jack finally setting eyes on Smokey. Is he gobsmacked to see  the body of John Locke apparently alive again? Or does he look at him and see the smoke monster? We shall see . . .




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