Popcorn Night

Digital lapse was endured.

Familiar with it? That’s when you click or press and nada takes place. But, being experienced, you know that something has taken place. It’s just not revealed. Novices will think nothing has happened and press buttons or click more. The clicks and taps accumulate, causing a crash or a sudden surge of activities that take you to somewhere that you don’t want to be, digitally speaking, like the wrong screen.

I’m not a novice. I’ve been clicking remotes on digital devices for a decade. Digital lapse is an old adversary. I experience it most with our streaming devices for viewing television shows and movies. Disney Plus is the worst offender in my current stable of providers. But finally I was on the screen where “The Mandalorian” was being offered. One blessing from the Disney Plus site is that it doesn’t immediately start playing trailers. It’s just quiet. Waiting.

I jumped up and set down the remote. Head down, a cat eyed me, ears moving toward my racket. “Popcorn?” I moved around my desk.

We were in the office. We are spoiled people. Although we have a sixty-five inch curved-screen 4K ultra-high definition smart TV in the living room, with surround sound, we do ninety percent of our television viewing in the home office. My wife calls it the snug. A twenty-seven inch flat screen television is mounted on one wall. My desk faces it. So does a recliner in the corner. My wife reclined there. Busy with a game on her AirMac or whatever her Apple machine is called, she nodded.

Making popcorn has become simple. Back when I was a child, popping corn required oil, popcorn, and a big black cast iron Dutch oven. Oil was spread across the bottom. The Dutch oven’s bottom, not mine. You know, inside it. Heat applied. Three kernels were dropped in. A lid applied. The kernels were monitored. Once they popped, kernels were poured in and spread across the hot oil, covering the bottom. Lid applied, a pot holder was acquired. I’d stand there, shaking the Dutch over as the kernels popped.

Jiffy Pop changed it. No need to pour everything. Just peel off the cardboard lid, hold the tin pan over the flame, and shake as the kernels cooked and the foil cover rose.

Microwaves changed it up again. We experimented with several methods before Pop Secret came along. It was just a folded bag. Put it in the microwave, one side up, and press the button. Then monitor as the popping proceeded.

Monitoring has remained the constant. The popcorn was always being monitored. Was that the last pop? Time to stop.

Deciding that we didn’t like that kind of microwave popcorn, our household had regressed back to where I’d started, oil in pan, kernels, lid, popping, add corn, lid, shake. No longer, though. We’d acquired a silicon microwave popcorn maker last year. No oil. Pour the popcorn in to the line. Apply silicon lid. Turn microwave on for four minutes. Monitor. Is that the last pop? Count to five.

It’s amazingly simple, quiet, and easy. So is clean up. I fear that it won’t last. News will break. Scientists will announce that radicalized burrblelons released from the silicon attacks your nervous system when you ingest popcorn made in such a manner. That’s how everything seems to be: something good is found and announced. We like it. Then we discover it’s bad for you or the world.

I poured the popcorn into bowls, flavored it with nutritional yeast, cleaned out the silicon popper and put it away, and headed back to the snug.

The cat had taken my seat. Curled up tightly, he didn’t bother looking up. Ears and tail were still. His eyes were closed. Probably pretending to be asleep.

Dropping to my knees on the carpet beside him, I picked up the remote and pressed play. Digital lapse was endured. Then the show began.

Socflooftes

Socflooftes (floofinition) – 1. Wise animal said to have lived before animals came to Earth, said to be one of the original architects of the Floof Exchange which allowed animals to come to Earth.

In use: “Flooftologists argue what species of animal Socflooftes was, and what sex. For convenience, Socflooftes is often referred to as a male but no evidence exists to support that he was identified as either sex. As for what manner of creature, a dragon, unicorn, or griffin is often mentioned. As there is anecdotal history to support each of those, one theory holds that Socflooftes was a shapefloofer, able to assume the shape of any creature. Some say that Socflooftes remains alive and sometimes visits Earth.”

2. Any smart or clever animal.

In use: “The bird demonstrated that she was a soclooftes as a video caught her opening her cage, feeding the cat and dog treats, then returning to her cage and locking herself back in.”

Two Short Dreams

‘Nudder busy dream night. Two stayed strongest with me. One which I found funny involved my wife.

Before that happened, though, I needed to get my phlegm tested to see if I had the flu. The local lab couldn’t test me for circular, bureaucratic reasons. I knew of a lab, though. Just needed to take my phlegm to another lab. So, I spit into a small piece of plastic, folded that in half, and put it into a plastic bag. Then off I went!

The lab wasn’t amused. They were downright pissed. “We can’t test this! What’s wrong with you?”

Chagrinned, I returned to report my failure to get my flu results because my sample had dried up and become contaminated. The man in charge was angry. He’d just received the report from the lab and was chastising everyone there, demanding to know who was responsible. I immediately went to him and told him, “It was me and only me. I’m the one who did it, all on my own. Put all the blame on me.”

He started righteously chewing me out but as he did, I could tell that he was trying not to laugh. That made me start laughing. He finally gave up and we both started laughing. He told me that what I’d done was silly and not to do it again, and then we went on our ways.

My way took me and my wife into a car on the road. We were young, in our early twenties. Ahead of us, a pickup truck was stopped in our lane. Weirdly, thinking back on it, we were driving on the left side of the road. The steering wheel was in the right place, though. Anyway, a pale metallic green, second-gen Prius — you probably know the type, it’s the ubiquitous spaceship-looking version that I seem to encounter all over the place — crossed the double-yellow line, pulled out into the other lane and passed the pickup — on a hill, going into a curve. Not safe, was what my wife and I said. Much finger gesturing and shouting ensued by both parties involved ahead of us. The pickup immediately started after the Prius with my wife and I right behind them.

We all pulled into a busy, dusty parking lot. My wife and I hurried into a little cafeteria-like place. She rushed to the counter. Two younger blonde twin women were approaching the counter, gabbing as they went. My wife deftly managed to reach the counter first. Holding up a quarter, which the male cashier accepted, she said, “Lemonade, please.”

The cashier answered, “I need to serve these two women first. They were here before you.”

“Then I went my quarter back,” my wife snapped.

“One gently used quarter returned to its previous owner,” the cashier said with a smile. My wife stomped off.

She was angry. Going to a table, she spread out newspaper sections to read. But, too angry to read, she then marched off, leaving the paper there. The cashier came up as she was departing the table. Pointing at the sections, he began, “Could you please,” but she rushed off without looking at him. He then appeared very dejected and walked away.

Seeing this, I quietly went up, folded up the newspaper sections, and put the paper back into the basket.

Saturday’s Theme Music

Supposedly, there’s a star heating the world out there beyond the misty rain veils, and we know that we’ve rotated around and we’re pointing at it because daylight has arrived. This all happened at about 7:14 AM in Ashland. However, I’d like a stronger sol presence. It’s expected to exert some influence. The temperature is now 41 degrees F but we expect it to reach ten degrees more before sol sneaks back out of sight at 7:23 PM. Call me Ishmael; no, call me dubious. Ishmael sounds better, though. As Dubious, I would undoubtedly process life being known as Doob. “Hey, where’s Doob today? Has anyone seen Doob?” It’d be a dubious honor.

Dreams again influenced my theme music selection. I was in a dream where I’m off stage, in the wings, watching a ceremony. I was envious of the recipient. I was like, “How does he do it? What do I need to do? Why can’t I succeed?” As I’m standing there, watching this guy receive accolades and adoration, music plays for him. It’s Roy Orbison with the 1989 song, “You Got It”. They were specifically playing this line for this guy:

Anything you want, you got it
Anything you need, you got it
Anything at all, you got it
Baby

h/t to Genius.com

In my dream, I was reacting, yes, anything he wants, he got it. Grrr.

Past the dream, I like the song. Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne wrote the song with Roy. The Jeff Lynne influence is heavy, especially in the bridging, but that works out. I don’t hear as much of Tom’s input. Fun to consider these three talented friends working together to write, develop, and record this song.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. You know who you are.

Cheers

Update: clouds have broken up. Sunshine has crashed through. Come on, sunshine!

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