!Ten Little Ups (Main:) Ten Little Ups

Ten Little Ups

Always on the 10th of a month, this list-keeping log of always 10 little "life motivators" of what happened in the preceding 4-5 weeks; i.e. stuff that went well or was well-received.

Here we go with...

April 2017 (somewhat hard to get together 10 items this time!)

  • reading the sequel to the 2001 novel by s.f. master A.C. Clarke, i.e. 2010 - ODYSSEY TWO, for the 2st time
  • some more, if as yet few, warmer days of real Spring!
  • the 4th season of ELEMENTARY finally having arrived at the video rental - woohoo!
  • not having to travel to Nuremberg every few weeks after all, so far
  • comparing the new GHOST IN THE SHELL movie to the old ones, and to the best t.v. extrapolation of the material, GitS STAND-ALONE COMPLEX Sn. 1
  • finally listening to the JOY sound track!
  • discovering a restaurant specialising in fondues - they even offer a chocolate-foundue dessert!
  • half a day riding a bike again with a great colleague - will do it more often now, I feel
  • rescuing a big "rubber" plant at work, after being moved to another office once again, knowing the old office's plants will simply be left to die!!
  • discovering a great Danish-made strawberry jam brand at my main supermarket - a hidden treasure all these years

March 2017

  • seeing the great documentary film MOTHERLAND, on a big maternity ward in the Phillipines' capital, with a friend
  • finishing up the old job, coming into view near month's end - me, smiling, open for improvement!
  • reading Clarke's 2001 again for the umpteenth time, still very impressed
  • happy to have warmer times start again - Berlin is having a bit of a normal spring, currently (mostly)
  • chuffed to get almost everything - media playing, VPN, secure login directory space - going for basic use on my Linux company laptop (99% of colleagues use Windows, so am feeling like a pioneer)
  • finally beginning to get my teeth done by a new efficient (my first ever:) female dentist
  • rediscovering the dazzling Mary Tyler Moore, i.a. by a first viewing of 2 seasons of the show that brought her to the world's attention, the above-average well-written (black & white!) DICK VAN DYKE SHOW
  • serendipitous viewing of the secret jewel of last year's s.f. movies, MIDNIGHT SPECIAL, especially Dunst in it! <3
  • a first pain-free day near this writing of an index finger, swollen for 4+ weeks!! (No doc. knows why... May hope never die!)
  • buying drawing/inking pens for continued efforts on my new "strip" series for an RSA s.f. mag

February 2017

  • discovering the book Oona & Salinger on a 2nd-hand bookstore's "books on outside tables" table
  • bingeing the SUPERGIRL series - 1st season - and, to my surprise, generally liking it, probably due to main role actress Benoist, as well as "Ally McBeal" being her hard-nosed boss
  • the quiet but nice birthday do at my fave Thai restaurant - we even got to slightly play "regifting" game; and quite a few people came from far away!
  • some beautiful flowers I was given then, that are still standing on my bedroom window sill, now a little sunken-in in self-reflection
  • the quiet "I know your name!" I heard at the end of a fantasy book reading club meeting
  • an interesting afternoon in Munich, i.a. in the new (sun-lit) Donisl
  • finally getting 2 picture postcards on the way, that I brought back from Africa, having forgotten to mail them there
  • acquiring a new anniversary edition collecting Marsupilami shorts, most by its creator, le grand Franquin!
  • staying warm inside, when it's mostly quite cold outside - a luxury not all Berliners seem to have in these months, yes, even in relatively rich Berlin
  • a copy of a new German translation of Dune, signed by its translator

January 2017

  • (wouldyabelieveit?) senator, and once Republican presidential hopeful, John McCain, for standing up to & mitigating the U.S. far right's Trump card, even once loudly performed Doublethink landed it in the White House, once Obama vacated the latter!
  • being with family at Christmas, the 3rd time in 4 years, after a very long pause before that
  • a nice New Year's do, with great food, and darted hand-arrows (I got the bull's eye with my 2nd throw) and looks
  • the new series THE YOUNG POPE i.a. produced by & starring Jude Law as Pius XIII, a subversively youthful (! = fortysomething!) burning "bad star" come crashing down on an alternate-historical Catholic Church
  • the great "feminist geek" fantasy, or magic realism, novel Uprooted by newcomer Novik - I was so stunned by it, apparently, that I read it twice in succession
  • experiencing lasting Southern African rain, and seeing, for the first time in my life a large area near the Kruger Park in all shades of green, no yellow to be seen!
  • seeing 4 (in words: four!) Rhinos no more than about 20 feet away, on a car safari one day!
  • a small Christmas tree "bell" sculpture made of red, green & white beads, and wire
  • learning stacks about termites, esp. the "wooden" kind and how they attack tree bark without killing the tree, and the tiny tears they cry when much of their works are destroyed by torrential rain
  • the s.f. movie ARRIVAL, and its even more impressive source short story, by Ted Chiang - who I'll be reading a lot more of from now on!

Nov./Dec. 2016 (more zip, zip 'n' hooray!)

October 2016

  • following the crazy US elections from afar like a spectator at a Wimbledon match
  • finally learning how to configure a v.m. under (Ubuntu) Linux
  • watching the October 2016th season of GOOD WIFE a 2nd time - and only now noticing, how in every recent season, the series makes fun of at least one important aspect of every day i.t.... cool!
  • beginning to get into Seveneves by Stephenson!
  • autumn colours returning in branches and underfoot - my favourite season
  • the newest WONDER WOMAN trailer (in German, for the moment)
  • trying Frigeo Brause for the first time again in many years, an unhealthy but fun old sorbet of long tradition (e.g. it appears in a scene in the classic TIN DRUM movie) - fun!
  • many chestnuts on the ground, on walks to and from work again (I picked up another one for my desk there)
  • news that I may seriously have a new mentally challenging job in 2017 at year's begin - yay!
  • a mail from a small-footed person I hold dear blowing away cobwebs of doubt with a post card, making me happy for at least a day! ;-D

August/Sept. 2016 (zip, zip, hooray!)

July 2016

  • proof that current changed permanent diet is working - losing a kilo a month on average! :-O
  • cake at the farewell lunch, by one of my favourite colleagues, who is moving to a new "old" firm - where she will finally have something useful to do again
  • windy days reminding me of Cape Town
  • getting frightened enough by cine-autistic views presented by the LOBSTER film, to make me leave cinema 1 minute before the end! :-D
  • guilty pleasure: binge-watching H2O & loving its partly dopey developments, esp. in the 3rd & final season
  • the way home from work - ever more!
  • discovering an old Spider-Man & Thor team-up comic at home, in which the world is briefly inverted (all that's dark becomes light & vice versa)!
  • the night before BREXIT!
  • one hard-boiled egg with salt at 1 p.m. (almost) every work day - for weeks now!
  • my hard-working small USB ventilator at work, making the (luckily relatively cool on average) Berlin summer bearable

June 2016

  • a postcard from Lisbon
  • finally handing all outstanding income revenue stuff in - what a relief!
  • starting to re-read one of my most highly favoured s.f. novels of all time - Le Guin's Left Hand of Darkness
  • getting to know the Curious Fox Bookshop in Berlin, run by at least one old friend from "olde bookshoppe" days more than a decade ago
  • many small but so beautiful blooms in our courtyard potted garden at home
  • Mrs. Clinton's winning "prime" California (one day before already) having clinched the Democrat presidential candidacy - she may not be the perfect candidate, but she is by far the best of all up till now remaining, of both big US parties
  • the best (i.e. lowest) "long glucose" result I remember ever having had in a quarterly blood test
  • blue cloudless Berlin skies, repeatedly
  • seeing the ultra-slow, tongue-in-cheek Japanese s.f. movie Whispering Star with a friend
  • getting the small carpet for my work place at home, that I bought several months ago, finally laid out & feeling it under my bare feet

May 2016

  • the slow but noticeable start of summer
  • the fantastic movie JOY, the 3rd with "JLaw" & Bradley Cooper - what a clever, straight-yet-subtle feminist parable!
  • splashing out on a big Lego X-Wing model on Star Wars Day
  • a slightly more cleaned-up bedroom, years later!!
  • a pleasant film evening watching Hepburn & Tracy in the autumn of their public filmic partnership in GUESS WHO'S COMING TO DINNER
  • starting Moriarty by Horowitz with some trepidation!
  • quiet moments at one or other work lunch with that great colleague
  • managing to port the Gutenberg plain-text Huck Finn onto a good ebook reader app on my almost-always-obtuse Winphone
  • apparently losing 3 kilos in as many months (will wonders never cease?!)
  • hearing that my brother is okay after what seems like a bad panic attack episode - we all have those damn howlers at least once in a lifetime, right?

April 2016

  • discovering Darth Vader's true form, and acquiring it, as everyone is still (!) in Awakened Fervour...
  • rediscovering that BSG series with the 12 "copies" and the "plan" - some plot laughabilities but more fun!
  • wonderful sunny days in Berlin until it got cold again (and warm - and cold - and ...)
  • the wonder of having a shell-accessible web space again
  • beginning phase 2 of my special stone-age diet, now also reducing carbohydrates by half, and handling it
  • re-enjoying reading Allegiant again, after a so-so new cinematic transmutation of its first half
  • feeling of solidarity among neighbours when facing a common problem in our house
  • decision to reboot a cartoon venture for far-away fans of this brief work, decades ago!
  • finally getting an Amy Winehouse CD my brother gave me for Xmas to work - and loving the contents!
  • watching the dark-blonde lady walking by my office every now-sunnier afternoon, walking 7 leashed dogs and 1 huge unleashed one, trailing (:-O)

March 2016 (zipped by too fast, 2)

Feb. 2016

  • half-blue winter skies as seen several days from my new office's big window (next to which I am lucky enough to sit)
  • the new STAR WARS movie, disappointing at first, okay after the 2nd viewing
  • delivery of a new small beautiful carpet for under my desk at home
  • a letter from the German i.r.s. to say I have nothing to repay for 2015
  • this German newspaper article on the std. question put to Merkel and "the left" ("how much longer?" - the article's answer: "forever!")
  • starting on Blish's CASE OF CONSCIENCE - hooray for the super Jesuit in space!
  • starting to walk home from work slightly longer distances again to up my daily step total
  • uploading photos from my Austrian "ski trip" end of Dec. (no skis!) to a photo gallery I set up anew
  • finally getting an SSH login going on, & generally getting to know, a new web space I am renting with a friend
  • a good/releasing cry about a smattering of love gone awry, mainly for her plight that I only really saw at the end

Jan. 2016 (zipped by too fast)

Dec. 2015

  • a 1st evening with other s.f. buffs talking i.a. about Olaf Stapledon
  • getting Xmas gifts package ready for remote family members
  • rediscovering creamed hering on potatoes as an easy-to-bring-about meal
  • wearing my long dark-blue "good" coat for an evening eat-out - I wore it no more than 3 times this year!
  • windy mornings, while I'm still in bed
  • 2nd watching of new Bond - now catching al the ref's to earlier ones
  • Merkel "person of the year"
  • last sunny days of autumn (winter is late this year)
  • reading the 1st 11 issues of SHATTER
  • realising a long-time colleague is my BMF

Nov. 2015

  • having begun reading Hesse's best advice for quinquagenarians in novel form again
  • the best little video shop in Berlin now stocking THE GOOD WIFE, sn. 6
  • more frequent contact with a pleasant Canadian native who turns out to be a bookworm like me
  • discovery of DeConnick's run at "Marvel Now" detailing the new & crazy funny exploits of CAPT. MARVEL, now mantled by potent blonde Carol Danvers!
  • rediscovery of the Thunderous countdown restarting again, at last!
  • getting my step counter to run again (somewhat) even if I do still keep walking - now to get back to 8000 on average
  • continuing with MARCO POLO - both the Netflix series and the Bergreen travel journal paperback
  • finding a few last chestnuts underfoot, to keep on various desks
  • wonderfully warm start of autumn in Berlin
  • Merkel sticking to her refugee civility guns for now