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Barb's Books & Chat

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In reply to an earlier post on May 20, 2012 7:53:48 PM PDT
First, there's no such thing as too much of a taste for your own pleasure. When it comes to that, too much of a good thing is just a better thing. As far as the adventurous, you're still here, right?.
We bought this old farmhouse over twenty five years ago and it'll be ours until the end. The house is over 130 years old and is surrounded by huge pecan trees. Behind it, ancient oaks are interspersed with native pines, a few hardwoods and wild blueberries. It's been a very forgiving place, and we love throwing parties. Drop in anytime,

Posted on May 20, 2012 8:12:24 PM PDT
Barb et al,
I had dinner with a couple of very nice gentlemen from Australia this evening. During the conversation, on the the men mentioned Alice Station several times! I could see it in my mind's eye as he spoke!

Posted on May 20, 2012 8:24:10 PM PDT
Kathy and Barb,

I have the live feed from the new white-bellied sea eagle nest in Sydney Olympic Park on computer now. Mum and Da are working on a new nest and doing some serious canoodling, preparatory to the new breeding season. Think eggs may be along about mid-June. The camera set up is not complete because BirdsAustralia is waiting to be sure they're committed to that nest before they go up the trees to mount the cameras. We have sound this year too. It works out nicely that the new seaglets should be along about the time that the young bald eagles in North America are fledging.

THE ONLY WITNESS is still going well. More anon.

Linda S.

In reply to an earlier post on May 20, 2012 9:08:11 PM PDT
Barbara Lane says:
Kathy Del

Re alice springs
boy there are some stories about that town (ignoring A town like Alice the book)

the 5 hr drive (i think) to Ayers rock and the red dust everywhere. (red soil)
alice is a unique town!!!
Hope they used some Aussie slang!!!

Barb down Under

Posted on May 20, 2012 9:45:07 PM PDT
Hey, everybody,

After being bummed out by two in a row poor downloads, I hit a winner.

Pamela Beason's THE ONLY WITNESS was a free or inexpensive Kindle download. Brittany Morgan is a seventeen-year-old unmarried mother who leaves her two-month-old daughter Ivy in the car outside a convenience store for ten minutes, maximum. Before she comes back, Ivy is stolen. The only witness is a twelve-year-old gorilla Neema, who uses American Sign Language to communicate with her researcher Dr. Grace McKenna. Detective Matthew Finn, transplant to Evansburg, Washington, from the Chicago PD, is working blind; the FBI can't get involved until there is substantial reason to suspect kidnapping. Finn connects Ivy's disappearance with that of two other babies in the Northwest, babies whose teenaged mothers all belong to the Sisters-Mothers Trust programs in their schools and who communicate via the YoMammas web site. With the publicity over Ivy's disappearance, Grace finally makes the connection to what Neema has been trying to tell her, Neema's descriptions produce the first authentic leads in the case, and her positive identification of the thief nails the case.

To add to the tension, Grace's grant funding is being cut, and her university has advertised Neema and the other research gorilla Gumu for auction. When a nosy reporter leaks the presence of the gorillas, a media circus ensues; the gorillas escape. Grace must worry not just about the survival of her research project but also the literal survival of the gorillas themselves.

THE ONLY WITNESS is a good read, a cross between a cosy and a police procedural. The plot is fairly set out with appropriate foreshadowing and a satisfying conclusion for both story lines. Characterization is strong. Point of view shifts between Brittany, Finn, and Grace, giving insight into their personalities, likes, dislikes, and thought processes. Neema emerges as a distinct individual in her own right. The book addresses the knee-jerk reactions over evolution vs creationism, the animal rights movement, and the impact of the failing economy in education, police work, and research funding. Highly recommended. 4.5/5 stars (A)

We're having a thunderstorm, so I'm keeping fingers crossed that my cable doesn't go out. I want to watch SHERLOCK when it's repeated starting in about 45 minutes.

Linda S.

Posted on May 20, 2012 9:48:23 PM PDT
L. M. Keefer says:
Hi all!

Anyone watch SHERLOCK tonight? Love to hear what you thought.

My son and I watched it and enjoyed it.

In reply to an earlier post on May 20, 2012 11:09:32 PM PDT
M. Bernstein says:
Keefer, and more
Anyone watch Jesse Stone? Tom Selick. This is his summer job. I think better than Blue bloods.

Posted on May 20, 2012 11:55:25 PM PDT

I liked SHERLOCK, though I don't see Moriarty as a suicide, even if he no longer has worthy opponents. It shows Sherlock in a slightly better light than previous episodes. Mycroft is the one I'm having trouble figuring out, his motivations. Certainly an interesting ending. Are we now going to have Sherlock the zombie??? I do like Martin Freeman's Watson.

Linda S.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 7:05:21 AM PDT
re: Aussie slang
A little, but not much. At one point I exclaimed I was stuffed. (couldn't finish my dinner as we had had appetizers first) One of the gentlemen said had he said something like that his father would have smacked him. So I guess I committed a faux pas, but still don't know what. I was embarrassed, so I did not pursue it.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 7:19:55 AM PDT
Keefer and all:
I watched SHERLOCK last night and loved it.

The ending was first class. Can't wait until next season to see how Sherlock survived that jump. He's obviously not dead. What about Moriarity. Did he really commit suicide? Let's see how the writers explain all this.

Mr. B:

Unfortunately Jesse Stone was on opposite SHERLOCK so I PVR'd it for later viewing. Can skip through the commercials. No ads on PBS.

Another bright sunny day up here. Have had to turn on the air conditioning for the first time this year.


In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 7:24:58 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 21, 2012 7:56:22 AM PDT
L. M. Keefer says:

It was ruder of the man to correct you by implying that his father would have smacked him for what you said, than you saying it.

HE was the rude one! And he embarrassed you. need rejoinders for that kind of condescending imbecile. A snappy comeback....

There's several approaches to this kind of rudeness:

1) If he thought that was rude, you show him what rude really is
2) You make him feel badly about saying anything negative about you or your father
3) You leave him nonplussed
4) You outdo him


1) "If my father had ever smacked me, I would have kicked him under the the . . .."

2) "My father couldn't have smacked me--he lost both arms at the D-Day invasion, poor dear....and then there was the leg injury at Iwo Jima..."

3) "We didn't do child abuse in my family. I'm curious...did you ever report your father to Child Protective Services?"

4) "Smacking a child at the table is really poor etiquette, don't you think? Do you have Emily Post Etiquette Guides and Miss Manners classes in this country? If not, there's an entrepreneurial opportunity. Hmm....anyone want to invest in a new business?"

Posted on May 21, 2012 7:44:10 AM PDT
L. M. Keefer says:

Regarding Sherlock surviving the jump.....

Yeah, my son and I talked how it could have been done.

Do you remember Sherlock asking the chemist for a favor?

Also that truck was blocking Watson seeing Sherlock hit the ground. And people prevented him from taking Sherlock's pulse very well.

And the bike rider knocked him down purposely.

What if those weren't real doctors/nurses but lab people from the chemist's lab? Maybe the truck had a trampoline next to it which Watson couldn't see? So Sherlock falls on the trampoline, then gets down on the ground, they squirt fake blood on him.
Watson gets knocked over and is disoriented. Etc.

Or maybe Sherlock had a mini-parachute for the last few feet....when is the next season starting?

Posted on May 21, 2012 7:47:37 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 21, 2012 7:48:48 AM PDT
L. M. Keefer says:
Linda S:

Yeah, am disappointed about the Moriarty thing.

What about Mycroft? What do you think his motivations could possibly be?

This rendition of Watson really grows on you, doesn't it? He humanizes Sherlock--shows Sherlock
has to be likable if this guy likes him that much.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 7:57:13 AM PDT

You should be a writer. Interesting points. Some I didn't notice. Hmmmm! Can't wait until Season 3, but I fear we may have wait until next spring.


Posted on May 21, 2012 9:14:55 AM PDT
Barb - I am in agreement with Keefer, your date was in the wrong. I read once that the point of good manners and ettiquette is not to adhere to an arbitrary set of rules and actions but to make other people feel comfortable. In other words, you know what is proper, but you tailor it for the company. Miss Manners once said that it is the height of bad manners to comment on the manners of others. Unless they are your children, she was right.

Mike - Spoken like a true fellow hedonist. I mourn my adventurousness due to health issues, not spirit issues, but all things considered I still do pretty well.

I liked the episode of Sherlock last night, but perhaps that is due to the fact that I don't remember the Reichenbach falls plot as well as I remembered the Hounds plot. I did enjoy the episode and was on the edge of my seat trying to figure out just how and when Sherlock would return. I loved the last scene with Watson at the grave. I got the dvds for my son's birthday. He missed last night's episode due to illness so there will be something new on there for him.

Posted on May 21, 2012 9:58:13 AM PDT
R. Larkin says:
Keefer, I also noticed that when Moriarty said to Sherlock "You're collecting a crowd" that a number of those gathering below were wearing what looked like lab coats.

Moriarty isn't the only one who can plan ahead. I find it very hard to believe that he is really dead.

Posted on May 21, 2012 10:04:40 AM PDT
L. M. Keefer says:

I wondered that, too, if Moriarty is really dead.

He IS an actor so good at faking stuff. And Sherlock didn't check his pulse, I don't think.

If I were a betting woman, I'd guess maybe he'll make an appearance next season....he's too good a foil to not have around making mischief.

I think the only thing I was disappointed in this show was not much crime-solving. I like it better when Sherlock has a big crime to solve that is really ingenious. The kid kidnapping things wasn't that suspenseful. And the thing with Moriarty kind of lacked cohesiveness.

Like it better when a case or two is the center of the show and the Moriarty/Sherlock competition just adds to the complexity of it. Adds color and excitement but solving a case or series of cases that are perhaps interconnected is the substance of the show.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:10:20 AM PDT
M. Bernstein says:

I lack the modern accoutrements of TV because I know eventually I'll fall behind. As it is now with streaming from Netflix and a 10x6 of tv channels, I'm at a loss as to how I'll watch them all. My guess is that SH will be repeated on PBS later.

Saw the temp in Tor was 80 yesterday. Temp here is in the cool 70's with big winds expected this week.

My wife tells me they're cutting wheat in Kansas this week, about 3 weeks early.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:13:57 AM PDT
M. Bernstein says:
Keefer, Kathy

Well, you can't have a better friend than Keefer. Probably set all your friends arunnin'.

If I were there, I would have burst out laughing, because I have an idea of what was meant.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:15:15 AM PDT
M. Bernstein says:

Mini-? for the last few feet. The guy is falling at 120 mph.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:32:07 AM PDT
I'll have to admit it, the thought of the consequences of adventurousness occurred to me this morning as I walked on the treadmill at my cardio therapy class...hooked up to monitors, thinking I'm living now on man-made parts and mass-produced I can't get too cocky. Still, I can say, honestly, that if I die today it will be with no regret other than a wish I had even more days to live this way. Maggie and I just returned home last night from the Celtic festival as the Tinkers ( and leave Wednesday to play at the three day Florida Folk Festival over Memorial Weekend as Lucky Mud (
amazon - neither of these are book sites. Just saying.....
Health is a major issue now, though, as age plays its hand. I'm not stupid, just careless (which may be seen as premeditated stupid, I guess), and I do my best to eat and live well. That doesn't help me run fast enough to leave the first 60 years in the dust, though.
I'm missing all the Sherlocks. Oh, well....I'll probably buy them at Best Buy in a boxed set next year. It's fun to read along with the stories, though, and to see all the different opinions.

Posted on May 21, 2012 10:37:10 AM PDT
Good day, all,

James, i'm glad that I'm not the only one who doubts Moriarty's dead. For a guy who supposedly swallowed his gun, there was surprisingly little mess. Plus, while he is obviously nuttier than a fruitcake, I don't see that kind of egotism as suicidal. I'm also eager to see the explanation for how Holmes "escaped" death. As far as I am concerned, Watson is the best part of the series.

Linda S.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:56:15 AM PDT

RE: And Sherlock didn't check his pulse, I don't think.

Correct. But Moriarity shot himself in the mouth and there was a huge pool of blood behind his head. I too hope he is not dead --a good foil for Holmes. But the writers are going to face a huge challenge to explain how he could reasonably survive a gunshot to the head.

We`ll have to wait and see.....


In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 10:58:46 AM PDT
Mr. B:

Yes it is blazing hot up here. Higher than Florida I think. I have the air on in the house. I think SH will be repeated on PBS and it will be out on DVD shortly, possibly also available through Netflix.


Posted on May 21, 2012 11:30:15 AM PDT
Does anybody remember if the original Reichenbach falls story by Doyle was the one where Doyle killed Sherlock, hoping to do away with the character that had taken over his life (Doyle wanted to write historic adventure novels) and then had to bring him back due to popular demand?

I will be sad if Moriarty is dead as he is such a nasty little ponce that he is a delight to watch. I'm pretty sure he will be back. I'm thinking of looking for a complete collection of Holmes for Charlie for his birthday as he has read my B & N cheapies to tatters and a good edition would be nice.

Mike - I too have mixed feelings about the adventurousness - but mostly positive. No matter what happens I have really lived my life. Perhaps if I was a more careful woman I wouldn't have the physical and emotional scars I carry but I might not have learned some of the things I know either - it is a hard balance to strike. There is this weird Puritanical thing in American society - the idea that if we eat the right things and weigh the proper amount and exercise with Spartan determination and without enjoyment and avoid pleasures that require a sin tax that we might just avoid death. I know this won't be a popular stance, but long term good health in my observation seems to be largely a matter of good genes and good luck. There are probably some people in your vicinity who chalk up your recent heart troubles to the fact that you lived the life of a musician but I am honestly not certain it makes the difference we would all like to believe. Me, I miss the energy to be madcap and adventurous - I worry that I have become an old lady before my time.
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Discussion in:  Mystery forum
Participants:  96
Total posts:  10000
Initial post:  Aug 17, 2011
Latest post:  Dec 9, 2012

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