Saturday, December 4, 2004

Today was baking day. I made M&M cookies, mint chocolate chip cookies, reverse chocolate chip cookies, peanut blossoms, and spritz. In addition to the gingersnaps I made yesterday and the buckeye balls I made on Thursday, I’ve made seven different kinds of cookies for Christmas. And I still have three more varieties I plan to make.

Baking consumed most of my day. I did manage to watch a Russian animation of the Swan Princess story, which I enjoyed for the detailed animation and not much else (and the unintentional humor of the good witch).

Okay, let me explain that last comment. In the Russian animations I’ve seen, if the story is a fairy tale, there’s usually a narrator. They do essentially what Jiminy Cricket did in Disney’s Pinocchio. In the Swan Princess animation, the story is told by a crow who happens to be the alter-ego of a good witch in the story.

For some reason, the voice for this crow character sounds exactly like that for Doris in the animated series The Critic—an aged, Devil-may-care New Yorker with a bad case of smoker’s breath, complete with hacking cough. It was amusing to see the kindly old witch talk as though she’d just taken the subway up from Queens.

Anyvay, after watching the Swan Princess, I realized how much I wanted to see some really excellent animation, so I re-re-re-re-re-watched Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away (which, incidentally, is not the original Japanese name, which translates roughly as Sen and Chihiro in the Land of the Gods). After luxuriating in that movie, I luxuriated in a nice hot bath. Appropriate, since Spirited Away is set in a bathhouse.

One other nice thing occurred yesterday: I received a check from the county for $800 (“Bank Error In Your Favor! Collect $800”). A phone call to them explained why; apparently, I didn’t need to pay my personal property taxes. My mortgage company does that for me. So, that’s $800 I can use somewhere. I think I’m going to invest it directly in Otherspace Productions, so that I can get that back up and running.

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