Friday, January 30, 2015

Of our own Murder mystery~~~

Well Darklings,

The news on the body part's that were found on 11th and Mission is sparse.

So far the suitcase was left in front or near the Goodwill Store in that area, and it contained a torso and leg of a light skin male, other parts were found in a 3 block radius but no head.

They have a image but not a very good one of a suspect. 

The possibility of identifying the body is unknown as the easier identifiable parts (head, hands) have at this time not been found.

And at this time they do not know how the person died.

The question of DNA is questionable unless this person is in a data base, but if not, it will only make it harder.

Doyle told me SFPD is being very tight-lipped about it and he has to respect that.

Having been on a couple of juries, one of them a murder, I know how hard and difficult getting answers can be, its not like how they show on CSI or NCIS or Blue Bloods or Bones, the answers are not there within the 43 to 45 minutes of show time.  It can take months trying to pull it all together, and still have the case go cold.

But because it is so unusual, it has peaked my interest, if I were a hard-boiled news reporter of the 1940's I'd call it "The Torso Murder" but now, who knows.

And speaking of Murder plus Film Noir, I have a guilty pleasure in watching Viola Davis in "How to Get Away With Murder"  when I first heard that title of that program I thought what are they going to come up with.

And they have come up with things that would make even my head pivot around, even Doyle is trying to leap ahead of the story line, because there is that campus cop that saw the group of law students take the rug out of the house, he is that one string that's left dangling to entangle them.

This is one program that keeps me glued to my TV what is going to happen, I keep asking.

The only draw back is you have to watch it in sequential order, it is not episodic, but still it is worth viewing.

And now my ride is here and I'm going out to dinner with my Doyle.

Later Darklings

Of "Advertisements"~~~

Dear Darklings,

A couple of times "advertisements" have been posted in my comments section of my blog posts, I do try to remove them as quickly as possible but sometimes I'm a few days (or more) late on checking my blog.

All I can say is this---do NOT click any links that these comment posts have....I do not sponsor those sites.  And I will remove them as quickly as possible.

Thank you for understanding.

Later Darklings

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Of "Film Noir" and Body Parts~~~~

Hello My Darklings,

I know what a combination but all will be clear as you read on.

First the Film Noir Festival,  oh to put it simply it was so much FUN!!!

Everyone there many dressed (including Moi and her sister) in period or near period clothing, we ran into old friends as well.

Staying at the hotel and resting between shows as well as doing some shopping was Perfect!!

If you are a film noir buff and you find out that they are holding one of these, then make a vacation of it, even if you can only do two or three nights of it, do make a vacation of it.

Although both Sis and I are of an age (you can guess how old I am, Sis is a few years younger) we have maintained our looks, although you cannot fight off old age completely, you can keep some of it at bay so to speak.

So on those days when there were no matinees we either rested, did a bit of spa work  (Heavenly to be pampered) or we went shopping and dinning out.  Loved It!

Doyle had let a few of our "friends" know where we were staying, they are trans-gender and love to dress up in period clothing, and I have to admit they look good in it too. So they would call at the Hotel to pick us up and we'd share a cab, I have to admit we did turn heads, but Doyle is also a very practical fellow, he knew Sis and I would be safe with them and see us safely back to our hotel and they love Film Noir as well.

We had a great time comparing the merits of the different films and discussing the mental motivations behind the plot lines as well as the clothing designs. 

The first film "Woman on the Run" (1950) with Ann Sheridan was filmed partly on location here and at the old amusement park in Santa Monica, and the ending with a "Laughing Sal", so San Francisco.

I really do love films that were done on location in the Bay Area, it gives a chance to see how much the Bay Area and San Francisco has changed. 

The time period was from 1934 and 1936 with our two favorites "The thin Man and After the Thin Man" right up to 1969 with the Honeymoon Killers although that was not so much my favorite,  the minute it creeps out of 1964 it begins to cease to be true Film Noir in my personal opinion.  Even our friends agreed.

But the French films were not neglected we had
OSSESSIONE  (1943)  a film that everyone thought was lost, because all known copies had been destroyed  and one of my favorites  LES DIABOLIQUES   (1955) Some times known as Diabolique, oh what a twist ending that one has, double twists. 
I could go on and on about it but it would only be my opinion, it's best to view the films yourself and draw your own opinion. 
I've made a list of the previous films shown at this and other Film Noir Festivals, so if they do appear on DVD I can add them to my collection. 
Doyle recorded Svengoolies presentation of "House of Horror" with Rondo Hatton, although not a good actor to see these movies is still part of the Horror tradition. 
To me Film Noir is just as important and just as Gothic as Horror movies such as "Woman in Black" and such, because the Gothicness comes from the filming and showing the distortions of the motivations of the people involved, being done in Black and White also give emphasis to the mood and feel of it.  Light and Dark, Good and Evil, Caring and Selfishness, Love and Hate.
I feel to be an Elder Goth one needs to watch Noir films as well, to see motivation all the better to understand the importance of the Light.   To me Film Noir is Goth and Gothic in a modern sense.
Ahhh but the day after the presentations when the festival was completely over, on Monday, we got an early call from Doyle and he says to us "I'm going to pick you up but wear your best Vintage dresses"  O.K. we think and he said he'll call for us at the desk...O.K. we think.
So we are completely packed and I ask management to send up what would be called a "bell boy" to help take our bags down, after we get word that our "ride" has arrived. 
And we in our vintage clothing are greeted by Doyle in a old-fashion 1940's chauffer uniform, and waiting for us at the curb is a vintage 1940's Roles Royce with a friend of Doyle's at the wheel also in a chauffer livery,  I don't mind telling you that a few well dressed business men and women were looking at us in puzzlement, and I think envy as Doyle so straight face escorted us to the Roles and helped us in as his friend put our bags in the trunk and we drove down the Streets of San Francisco and over the Bay Bridge, to a lot of appreciative honks and thumbs up and mouth open expressions.
The faster cars took their time passing us checking us out, even a few motorcyclists as well, and Sis and I waved as if we were the Queen and laughing about it.
When we got home I asked Doyle how come this and he said "it's the only way to end a weeklong adventure as you transition back to reality"  and his friend said that he wanted to take his restored Roles out anyway to clear the pipe's.  It seems that the chauffer livery was special made for his friend and he had a spare that fit Doyle, I'm so glad he didn't gain weight.
It was lovely!  And unfortunately back to the reality of bill paying, and laundry, and in Sis's case calling her colleague who covered for her for any updates. 
Dinner was easy, our old standby Chinese.  Yes back to reality.
But it seems that mystery and Noir does not easily leave us we heard on the news last night that Body part's were found in a 3 block radius from around 11th and Mission. 
This is the news story as it stands right now......
SAN FRANCISCO — Police responding to reports of a suspicious package in an up-and-coming area here Wednesday afternoon instead found something horrific — a suitcase containing human body parts.
The body was so mutilated that officers had to call the medical examiner in to determine if it was from a human being or an animal, police spokeswoman Grace Gatpandan said.   The race and gender of the person were unknown, she said.  
The roller-type suitcase had been left next to a pile of garbage and debris at 11th and Market streets, Gatpandan said.   Police initially responded to a report of a suspicious package at 4:14 p.m. Wednesday.  The block was shut down as part of the investigation and remained shut down late Wednesday night, she said.
More remains were found in the surrounding blocks. "It is unclear at this time if all the remains belong to one victim," Gatpandan said.   Police had a "preliminary, distinct suspect description," but it wasn't being released as officers are "actively attempting to locate this particular person of interest.”
Exactly when the suitcase was left in the area is under investigation.   Police had a rough description of a suspect, the Chronicle reported, and detectives were working to obtain surveillance video in the area.   Authorities later found more body parts within a three block radius of where the suitcase was found.
“There was one crime scene — it was just very large,” Police Officer Grace Gatpandan said.  Information about whether the body parts came from one victim or more was not immediately known.   The street is in a long-troubled area with large numbers of homeless people. It is also just a block from Twitter headquarters and part of an emerging tech corridor.
San Francisco, New York, Los Angles, all are cities of Noir, but none so much as San Francisco, is this the body of a woman?  Do we have a "Black Dahlia" type crime here, or was it something more mundane.
Our San Francisco police department is going to have it's hands full, but as more and more surveillance camera's are installed hopefully it will make it easier to solve crimes or will it just confuse it more, or drive miscreants into darker and darker area's of the cities.
Later Darklings

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Of more protests and a possible BART shut down and clothing~~~~

Dear Darklings,

Well the commute into the City is going to be horrible tomorrow.  We heard on the news that protestors are going to muck up the commute on BART tomorrow by shutting down the Montgomery Street Station at 7 a.m. using "metal spoons"? 

What the spoons are for I don't know, but Doyle said that if they throw them from the platforms onto the third rail it could cause an explosion or seriously short circuit the electrical connection and possibly cause a fire. 

I'm hoping they will do something different, but people can be fools.

They are protesting because 14 protestors who shut down BART a few weeks ago in a "I Can't Breathe" protest are going to have to pay $70,000 dollars in fines and reparation.  Their complaint is that the protestors that blocked the freeway their charges were dismissed, so these protestors charges should also be dismissed.

Doyle thinks it's because it was handled by two different judges who had two different views on protesting.  He thinks and I certainly feel this way, that all protests including those on the freeway need to pay at least a fine and do community service like cleaning up graffiti and the rubbish on the freeways, that no one is exempt.  But we feel that the judge working with the freeway protestors felt overwhelmed. 

Doyle needs to go into the city but he'll take the Ferry instead,  My sister and I will be going to the city for the start of the Film Noir Festival but Brian said he'd drive us over in the early afternoon to allow us time to get to our hotel and settle in. 

It's all in the planning.  I'm feeling better and resting as much as possible as well, mostly its sniffling and this stubborn cough caused by dripping sinuses.  Doyle suggested that we plan on staying at the hotel for the entire time of the Film Festival, have a sort of vacation, he said he'd reimburse us half the costs of the hotel stay. 

Sis thinks that would be wonderful, she doesn't have any clients at all booked for the week, she planned on being free during that time.   So once we get to the Hotel we'll talk to the agent to see about extending our stay, even if we have to move to a different room.

I'll have all my meds with me and if we need anything Doyle can bring it to us, since he'll be commuting in.

So more packing for a longer stay,  Weiner Dog and Belladonna will be staying with our neighbor while Doyle is in the city during the day and come home with him in the evening.  I'm going to miss those precious dynamic duo, but they are use to it and our neighbor enjoys their antics.  

Sometimes because my family has said I'm to not do any heavy work that could aggravate my cold, I get bored, so besides writing to friends and family, reading, I do research, and I came across a lovely website that offers modern clothing done in the style of the 1920's and 1950's.

I will post a few examples here-----

The company is called ModCloth  their url is
Again I recommend reading the reviews on their clothing and such, and compare their size chart,  also they seem to run their length of skirts a bit shorter than I like but I have fallen for the third image down and plan to order it.
They do not appear to have a brick and mortar store it appears to be all on line, which is sad in a way as I do love to hold the garment up to me and try it on, but I understand their return policy is very good, so it should not be a problem. 
I will keep looking for other on line shops if you are interested in vintage styles and want to take it to a slightly Gothic turn. 
And now I must go, the repair man is here to see what is wrong with the refrigerator.
Later Darklings

Monday, January 12, 2015

Of the Film Noir Festival, Shoes and shopping ~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well bit by bit I am getting better, but I am going to have to keep a large bag of cough drops to control my coughing,  but I am going to rest as much as possible this week, BECAUSE......

The San Francisco Film Noir Festival starts this Friday!!!!!!!!!!

You can tell I'm excited!!! 

And Doyle, sweet man that he is knew I was in no condition to get a full pass for two to the festival and so he purchased it for me and had made reservations for the weekend so that Sis and I could stay at a hotel in the City and not have to travel back and forth over the bridge.

Even now I'm packing my vintage Samsonite bags for that weekend with my selection of vintage clothing, yet Darklings, even with the residual effects of a cold I am going to be my elder aging Femme Fatal Gothic Best. 

But in between I'm resting,  I saw my Doctor earlier today and she said that I had avoided the problems of pneumonia and my lungs are clear, so it's just the cough and the sinuses.

Yes when one gets up there in age the cold and the flu are nothing to fool around with.

But it will be good for me, I was getting cabin fever just resting, reading, sleeping (a lot of sleeping), and taking my medicine and vitamins. 

And I've come across something for all you elder Goths and vintage Diva's,  at our age it is so hard to find comfortable, yet stylish shoes, especially for everyday wear and when you do get a pair you will wear them to death, get them re-heeled and re-soled (especially if you've got a good shoe repair man) and wear them to death again until it reaches a point where they cannot be resuscitated.

And I have had that happen more than once, really good vintage shoes I save for special occasions, but for everyday I have to hunt and hunt and be disappointed until I find a treasure and when I do I'll see if they have other's in my size in different colors.

Well my Elder Darklings no more.  

Finally Aerosol shoes are coming out with designs and styles that fit the bill as best as it can.

These are just two of the many styles they have and I purchased one of each style that you see above and they worked perfectly for me, so much so that I'm going to get them in other colors and this is because I've worn our my regular pairs of shoes that I use for every day wear.  And I do mean worn out.
I mean Darklings when your shoe repair man says "Sorry Ma'm there is nothing more we can do, the vamp is broken, the leather is worn through you're going to break your neck if you continue with this pair".   So what is a woman to do???  GO SHOPPING!!!
Now this may not the right style for most of you Darklings, but this company is on line and you can order direct, but do carefully read the reviews as well because not every woman's foot is the same, what works for me might not work for you but at least you can check it out.
To see what they have their web site is
I hope the link works.
But check them out Darklings and check their store locator as there might be a store near you.   I just found out that there is one just 25 minutes from me (when traffic is good) Poor Doyle is going to get bored when I'm well enough to take him shopping.  Or is it him taking me shopping?
Either way I am going to have fun once I'm pass this cough, so starting this Weekend Film Noir, "Agent Carter", Aerosol shoes, what is next?---A book sale, a Vintage fashion show?  I can hardly wait!!!
Later Darklings

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Of the puzzlement of the Human Skulls~~~~

Hello Darklings,

I'm feeling slightly better, but I still fall asleep at the oddest times.  Well Sis did say to me, and it was echoed by Doyle, if you feel sleepy lie down, now, don't fight it.  And they are right.  And with Belladonna and Weiner Dog snuggled next to me for extra body warmth it's a good thing.

Although in one of my waking moments Doyle asked out loud "What is up with all these Human Head skulls being found here and there?"

And he's right----in the last 18 months a total of 3 human skulls have turned up.

The first was in a recycling station in or near  Oakland,  nearly 6 months later another one was discovered on the side of Skyline Road in Oakland, on a paper plate with plastic mardi gra beads and now a day or two ago a 3rd found in a Homeless encampment also in Oakland.

I've reprinted the article here from the Contra Costa Times----

Natalie Neysa Alund

OAKLAND -- A homeless man at a camp cleared by officials Thursday afternoon near downtown was found with what appeared to be a human skull among his possessions of arts and crafts, two shopping carts and tarps.
The man emerged from his large brown and gray tent with the skull in hand at about 1 p.m., surprising police and Caltrans workers evicting people from the camp at Seventh and Castro streets, underneath Interstate 980, authorities said.

"I couldn't believe it. It was crazy," said Rickie Terry, a Caltrans worker, who said he didn't spot the skull when he and others visited the site two weeks ago. He also said he didn't remember seeing a freshly-dug hole in the dirt about 50 feet away from the tent.

Later, the homeless man said he found the skull while digging in the area but refused to give his name or answer any more questions. Police did not arrest the man, but an officer said he did take down his personal information in the event they need to contact him.  

Another man at the camp, Chris Craner, 43, said they often dig holes to bury their garbage in the camp, but he had never seen the skull until Thursday.

"I would know about it if there was a skull here," Craner said, standing by three women -- one who held a white-and-brown spotted puppy. "We would all know about it because we're a close-knit group."

Police interviewed the camp's residents and sent a picture of the skull to the Alameda County Coroner's Office to confirm whether it was human. About 2:45 p.m., police and a coroner's assistance bagged the partially intact cranium and took it to the coroner's office, where it will be examined.
Police earlier had issued notices for the half-dozen people who live there to leave the site, which is owned by the state.


It was later announced that this skull was indeed human but of a Native American, the question is was it found there at the homeless camp or some place else, to be determined.

However with the two previous skulls no word has emerged about their situation or any follow up.

It seems that Oakland is becoming more macabre and Gothic than we imagined, Just think Darklings, just a short distance from all those protest marches was buried a human body, how little do we know what is under our very feet.

And now I'm feeling tired again and will take a nap, thank goodness Sis will cook dinner for herself,  Doyle and Brian while I'll have Wor Won Ton Soup that Doyle is going to pick up in 30 minutes.  It is nice to be pampered when one is ill.


Friday, January 9, 2015

Of feeling sad over the state of affairs~~~~

Hello Darklings,

I'm still under the weather with my cold and perhaps that is contributing to my feeling so "down".

Usually I very rarely comment on what is happening in the world or locally but with what has happened in France I feel is an attack on "free Thought" on the freedom to explore things to find truth and even the freedom to even laugh at religion.

Now personally I take my religious beliefs seriously, but as a means to be at peace within myself and with others.

I do not expect people to think or believe the way I do, and I am always interested in how archeologists peel away the layers of centuries to discover things of how things developed.

When I was very little I believed in my childish mind that every word in the bible was absolutely true, but my Father said to me "Not exactly, things change over the course of telling and re-telling over the course of time.  Even the bible has changed because of what was added, taken out, re-translated etc."  he went on to say "It's like the game of 'Telephone'"  

I couldn't quiet understand or grasp what he was talking about but he said it could be demonstrated very easily how things change,  the next day a number of my friends were over and Dad said "Let play "Telephone".    So we all lined up in a straight line but there be about 24 inches between us so we could not overhear what was being whispered into each child's ear.

Dad started it and whispered something into my oldest brother's ear, my brother processed it and then whispered it into the next child's ear and so on and so one and even I heard it whispered into my ear and then I whispered it into my friends ear, now after we had whispered it into the other person's ear we were to write down what we thought we heard.

And then at the very end the last child wrote on our playroom blackboard what he heard,  then my Dad said for us one at a time read out what each of us heard...and each time it was always a bit different, then Dad wrote out above what the last child wrote what is was he said at the Beginning.

When we compared the two sentences they were complete different but with only a few things here and there that was correct but the meaning had been completely changed.  But already it was a revelation to me.

Well of course we all laughed about that and it was a fun game, but my Dad made sure that those two sentences were left up on the black board and he carefully collected in sequence order each paper that each child hand written on.

Later after my friends had left Dad carefully posted each note in the right sequence order, he called me, my sister and brothers (my oldest brother was still alive at that time) over.

And he said "Imagine that each one of these notes is one generation of people or 20 years---and with each generation depending on what is in that person's mind, how they interprete what they learned and passed onto the next generation.   Do you see how that changes?"

And we did----dramatically so.   Dad continued "It's like gossip, it changes and gets different with each re-telling, only gossip is very bad and can damage a person reputation.  In reading the Bible, the Torah or any religious work, we have to remember that it changes depending upon what is in that person's mind, or how it is translated from a different language depending on what is in the translator's mind.   Only in looking at what is basic and try to peel away layers can you discover what is or might be true, but never believe anything absolutely without question, because that can close off your mind to truth and to wonder."

Dad said that in the bible Pontius Pilate asked an extremely important question----something that everyone should ask every day with every event that one hears or reads----


And Dad warned us to beware of anyone promoting their idea of the Truth and to keep our minds flexible and open, especially to change and discoveries.

It took me a while to learn this, something's I do hold sacred but that is personal and I've found that when I'm around people who do not at least have some respect for certain things then I do not want them in my sphere, I have found them to be internally angry and closed minded, even toxic, manipulative, poisonous and dangerous, so I would disengage any contact with them.   Some of my friends didn't much to their sorrow.

Some programs poke fun at religion such as "South Park", "Family Guy", and even "The Simpsons",  I found it at its best hilarious on "Big Bang Theory" when Sheldon's Mother would come to visit him.  But I found that within that character she really gave Sheldon a certain foundation in his regimented, scientific, denial of religion mind, and even though the character referred to Catholic's as "Rosary Rattlers"   I as one, still found it funny, not disrespectful but funny.

Why?  Because it takes all kinds of people and we are human and if we can't laugh at God or with God then we are pretty poor people and if so then maybe then God should wipe everything from the face of the earth and start it all over again.

Mom use to say "People make plans and God laughs" and there have been times when he's had a very strange sense of humor.

I remember many years ago when my parents were up there in age they were planning and pre-paying for their funeral and Mother told Dad "I'll make sure I'll have you buried in your good Blue Suit" and Dad said "why not in my fishing gear?"  and Mother replied "It will be in your good blue suit and don't think you're going to sit up in your coffin and complain because I won't have that!"   and we all laughed at Mom's declaration.

Laughing at Death----not bad for a Rosary Rattler.

But because of what has happened in France I want to re-print here an article that appeared on the internet version of the NEW YORKER MAGAZINE

And it makes sense-----


January 7, 2015

The Blame for the Charlie Hebdo Murders

By George Packer

 The murders today in Paris are not a result of France’s failure to assimilate two generations of Muslim immigrants from its former colonies. They’re not about French military action against the Islamic State in the Middle East, or the American invasion of Iraq before that.
They’re not part of some general wave of nihilistic violence in the economically depressed, socially atomized, morally hollow West—the Paris version of Newtown or Oslo. Least of all should they be “understood” as reactions to disrespect for religion on the part of irresponsible cartoonists.

They are only the latest blows delivered by an ideology that has sought to achieve power through terror for decades. It’s the same ideology that sent Salman Rushdie into hiding for a decade under a death sentence for writing a novel, then killed his Japanese translator and tried to kill his Italian translator and Norwegian publisher.
The ideology that murdered three thousand people in the U.S. on September 11, 2001.
The one that butchered Theo van Gogh in the streets of Amsterdam, in 2004, for making a film.
 The one that has brought mass rape and slaughter to the cities and deserts of Syria and Iraq.
That massacred a hundred and thirty-two children and thirteen adults in a school in Peshawar last month.
 That regularly kills so many Nigerians, especially young ones, that hardly anyone pays attention.

Because the ideology is the product of a major world religion, a lot of painstaking pretzel logic goes into trying to explain what the violence does, or doesn’t, have to do with Islam.
Some well-meaning people tiptoe around the Islamic connection, claiming that the carnage has nothing to do with faith, or that Islam is a religion of peace, or that, at most, the violence represents a “distortion” of a great religion. (After suicide bombings in Baghdad, I grew used to hearing Iraqis say, “No Muslim would do this.”)
Others want to lay the blame entirely on the theological content of Islam, as if other religions are more inherently peaceful—a notion belied by history as well as scripture.

A religion is not just a set of texts but the living beliefs and practices of its adherents.
Islam today includes a substantial minority of believers who countenance, if they don’t actually carry out, a degree of violence in the application of their convictions that is currently unique.
Charlie Hebdo had been nondenominational in its satire, sticking its finger into the sensitivities of Jews and Christians, too—but only Muslims responded with threats and acts of terrorism.
For some believers, the violence serves a will to absolute power in the name of God, which is a form of totalitarianism called Islamism—politics as religion, religion as politics. “Allahu Akbar!” the killers shouted in the street outside Charlie Hebdo. They, at any rate, know what they’re about.

These thoughts don’t offer a guide to mitigating the astonishing surge in Islamist killing around the world.
Rage and condemnation don’t do the job, nor is it helpful to alienate the millions of Muslims who dislike what’s being done in the name of their religion. Many of them immediately condemned the attack on Charlie Hebdo, in tones of anguish particular to those whose deepest beliefs have been tainted.
The answer always has to be careful, thoughtful, and tailored to particular circumstances. In France, it will need to include a renewed debate about how the republic can prevent more of its young Muslim citizens from giving up their minds to a murderous ideology—how more of them might come to consider Mustapha Ourrad, a Charlie Hebdo copy editor of Algerian descent who was among the victims, a hero. In other places, the responses have to be different, with higher levels of counter-violence.

But the murders in Paris were so specific and so brazen as to make their meaning quite clear. The cartoonists died for an idea. The killers are soldiers in a war against freedom of thought and speech, against tolerance, pluralism, and the right to offend—against everything decent in a democratic society. So we must all try to be Charlie, not just today but every day.

If this article offends some of my readers, well I get offended as well, at the senseless killings in the name of religion.

This has got to stop, or God or someone or something  will wipe everyone off the face of this planet and only cockroaches will rule.

And now I'm going to have some chicken soup, take some more cold medicine lie down and rest.

Later Darklings

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Of Starting 2015 with......a cold....~~~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well 2015 has started with a whimper for me, I was fine until Sunday.

New Year's Day Dinner was lovely, and really easy to do.  Ham with heated crush pineapple sauce for the gravy for the Ham, and sweet potatoes that first have been boiled then their skins peeled then bakes  with melted dabs of real butter on top, string beans, also jelly cranberry sauce who prefer it over the pineapple, asparagus,  and any other vegetable that's in season.  I have also used heated sweetened applesauce as well as a type of sauce for the ham as well.

Some people like to get that Honey Bake ham and personally I see no sense in buying that when a Dubuque Ham works just as well.

Once you get the ham free of it's container rinse it with warm water thoroughly, that removes the salty gelatin off of it.   Many people make the mistake of heating or baking the ham with that gelatin and that makes it very salty, a warm water rinse takes care of that.

Then do deep cut's across the top of the ham then pin with toothpicks canned pineapple rings on top (save the juice), then put as much brown sugar as you can on the top, followed by pouring the pineapple juice, then bake for a long as it takes for the size ham you have.   And serve with Sweet Hawaiian roles, years ago Mom knew a lady who would make this Portuguese Sweet bread, into rolls and she would buy a lot of them from her for our New Years Holiday dinner, now King's Hawaiian makes the same type of rolls.

The first time I tried it I said "Ha!! Portuguese Sweet Bread!"  The dear lady gave me a copy of her recipe before she passed away, and I have made it from time to time.

Monica and Coralline helped with the clean up and while the pies were baking and coffee perking we relaxed and chatted, my brother having recorded the Rose Bowl game for the boys to watch the next day.  But he didn't want the game to intrude in this family holiday.  Their New Year's eve was quiet, but someone had set off some firecrackers just down their block.

They were excited about moving into their new "old" house, starting on Monday but Coralline said that she was bit disappointed about having to instead go to school and not being able to stay in the house the first week.  I told her she would have plenty of time to get settled into her new home.

On Sunday Monica called me and asked if I care to go and see the house as the elderly lady was going to be leaving that very day.

We both met the lady and her son as she gave the keys to the house to Monica, her bedroom suite was already packed into the moving van, and all of her personal things and those items the son wanted to keep including family portraits.

She told Monica for her and my brother to take good care of the house, it served her family for many years, lots of joy as well as sadness but she admitted after her husband died the house became empty for her, it needed children and grandchildren again to come alive and she had no regrets leaving it, it was time.  Monica promised to help preserve the historical integrity of the house as long as she and my brother lived in it.

Then the elderly lady was whisked away by her son, but I thought I saw tears on her cheeks as she sat in her sons car taking one last look at this house that she had lived in for over 60 years that had been in her husbands family for nearly 130 years.  I felt sad for her, I could understand her feelings.

But as I looked at Monica I could see pride and joy at the prospect of this house.  So I was given a tour and it had much the same features as mine but not as large, nor a full 3 floor, only two floors, but oh yes a room for Coralline, and one for Chris, a Master Bedroom that was empty of furniture and a good size room towards the back for the twins,  I noticed that in the other rooms there was wall paper but not in the room for the twins.  Monica told me that the lady said it was originally the nursery and the wall were always painted white and no wall paper because children draw on the walls. 

Ohhhh I thought, that made sense, and the nursery was a bit large because the baby nurse or nanny would sleep in an alcove in the nursery to be close to the baby(s). 

One thing I noticed on the 2nd floor was a door at the end of the hall that lead to a metal balcony and metal stairs.  Monica told me that the great grandfather had that installed and it has been refurbished several times because many years ago the great grandfather received a letter from a friend who lost his two children because they and the nanny could not get out of the house because the main stairs was on fire and they were trapped and died.  So he decided to have that escape staircase installed.  It never had to be used.  Monica said in a way she felt safer knowing it was there.

But most of the furniture was left in the house as well as some nick-knacks that seemed just right.  

I saw the basement, the washer and dryer were very old, and there was space to line dry things as well.   But I saw the section that was going to be the man cave and it already looked somewhat finished even with a fireplace---I was told that the ladies of the house insisted that the men smoked their cigars and pipes down her and you could smell the scent of the smoke, Monica said she was going to see if there was a way to remove most of the smell, the carpet and curtains seemed to have trapped a lot of it as well, so as Monica said "Bye, Bye"  and would find a carpet that came close to looks to the old one.

I began to feel tired and Monica said I looked flushed, so I came home fell asleep only to wake up to a Lovely cold.  A honking, hacking, nasal dripping, mucus rendering cold.   I'm in my 3rd day of it Brian had to meet Doyle at the Airport for me so Doyle is going to help nursemaid me.

And now he's here saying I need to lie down on the couch or go back to bed, I think I'll just lie down on the couch, I managed to record "Agent Carter" and "Forever" last night and I want to see it.

I love shows that have a retro theme to it and "Agent Carter" is right up there.

Besides I have to get well for the "Film Noir Festival" in the City.

Later Darklings.