Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday Wrap-Up

Our hot streak broke yesterday. We were two days away from breaking the record for consecutive days over 100 degrees when a front came through, so we only got up to 97. However, there was a brief time in the afternoon when it was in the 80s. I went outside and just reveled in it. We'd had 40 days of 100+ degree temperatures, which is rather Biblical. And now we're back to the heat, as today is supposed to go over 100. There may be another break tomorrow, and then the streak apparently will start over, but they doubt it will be as long a streak, since 40 days from Sunday would be late September.

And it turns out that all the exercise I've been doing has been GREAT for my performance in ballet. I have a little jogging trampoline (a mini, low-to-the-ground trampoline you use for jogging in place) that I got when I was rehabbing after knee surgery, but it's been living in my office, where unsightly things go to die (probably bad feng shui for a space where I'm supposed to be creative or efficient). I got the bright idea of dragging it downstairs and putting it in front of the TV. I try to do about 45 minutes a day, mixing jogging, marching and some ballet-type leg raises. At first I was doing it in intervals, with the various leg exercises and marching during the show itself and then jogging during commercials, but in the last couple of weeks I've started warming up with the marching and leg raises, then jogging for about 25 minutes straight. I found last night that I could raise my legs higher and hold them steadier, and then I wasn't at all winded after doing jumps or doing leaps across the floor. I even stayed for jazz class, since I'll miss a class next week and need to make up, and wasn't too tired after two classes in a row. I did something to my hip in jazz, though. It's almost like a punchline to a "you know you're old" joke, since we were using a Ray Charles song and doing steps that are mostly from swing dancing, so I may have been a trifle overenthusiastic. You know you're getting old when you throw out your hip while dancing to oldies. In my defense, Ray Charles is my mom's music, and I grew up listening to him because of her, not because I'm in that generation. Still, usually jazz class is more semi-hip hop to current music I've never heard of. Doing something closer to what I consider "jazz" and with steps used to dance to real jazz was much closer to my speed. If the class were like that all the time, I might actually register for it and do it full-time, but I pretty much loathe most of the music in that class. I did get my hip back in line, but it's a bit stiff today. I think I'm up for gentle exercise to keep it moving, but I'm definitely motivated to keep this up, since it made such a big difference.

I should finish the current draft of the current book today. I just have to rewrite the ending, which has been a trouble spot. And I came up with a title yesterday (see, the temperature drops and my brain starts working). I've been totally blank on a title for this book for two years, and a very obvious one struck me yesterday. In fact, it was so obvious I was sure it's been used to death, but I didn't come up with a single match in an Amazon search.

And now it's Friday. I'm pretty much going to be crazy busy from now until the time I get on the bus for the airport on Tuesday. On nights like this, I really miss having a real "Sci Fi Friday" because I'll need the break to just veg out in front of the TV (and maybe do my nails or some mending). There's Haven (yay), but that's late and there's just wrestling before it. I may marathon the previous Haven episodes OnDemand.

But I think I've figured out one of the reasons I love that show: It may be as close as I can get to seeing Katie and Owen on TV unless someone makes Enchanted, Inc., the TV series. The main character, Audrey, has a unique ability: she seems to be immune to the weird abilities of others. In this town, a lot of people have what they call "afflictions" or "Troubles," that affect other people, but they don't affect her. They may or may not be something the people can control. For instance, there was a young woman who couldn't look at someone without them seeing their worst fears come to life, so instead of seeing her, they saw what they feared the most. But Audrey saw her normally. That's fairly similar to Katie's magical immunity, and it's Audrey's big strength that helps her deal with the crazy stuff in the town. Plus, she's extremely practical, has a lot of common sense and has the ability to see what's really there, though in her case that's more metaphorical than it is with Katie. It just means that when she notices that the weather in the immediate vicinity gets weird whenever a particular woman is really upset, she's willing to consider that the woman is affecting the weather instead of trying to rationalize some far-fetched scientific explanation. And she's got a dry, snarky sense of humor, to the point that I now seem to hear her voice in my head when I read Katie (the actress might actually make a decent Katie -- wrong hair color and no Texas accent, but that can be dealt with and I think she could nail the personality). She's not exactly like Katie, though. Instead of being the small-town girl in the big city, there's more of a Northern Exposure thing going on, with the big-city FBI agent in the small, remote town. And instead of coming from a big, loving (and kind of infuriating) family, she has a background more like Owen's, not knowing who her parents were or where she came from after growing up in foster homes.

Nathan is a little less like Owen than Audrey is like Katie, but he has a pretty similar personality. He's rather shy in social settings but is perfectly fine -- and even kind of good at -- dealing with people professionally. He also has the dry, understated sense of humor, though less snarky than his partner. He's the really nice guy who doesn't seem to realize how good-looking he is. He's also good with babies (though with Owen, it's more that the babies like him, while Nathan loves babies and can go from tough cop to puddle of goo in about two seconds in the presence of an infant). He's not supernaturally powerful the way Owen is, but he is now the town's police chief, so he has that kind of power, and he's more or less in charge of dealing with the weird things happening in town in the way that Owen is on the front lines for all the magical mayhem. Plus, dark hair and blue eyes, though Nathan is tall and Owen is not.

Incidentally, although I've described Owen as fairly short, my mental picture of him is around five-nine to five-ten, which isn't that short. I guess I tend to go for tall, so when I was trying to give him some physical flaw to make him not entirely my perfect man, I made him shorter than my usual "type," which skews the perception of "short" since my type is over six feet. Nathan on Haven is pretty much my ideal physical type.

So, I guess if you want to watch Enchanted, Inc., the TV series, watch Haven and kind of blur your vision to make Audrey's hair darker, Nathan shorter, and the surroundings Manhattan instead of a small coastal town in Maine. Add a few gargoyles, and then you're there! It's like an alternate universe fanfic in which Owen is a police chief, Katie is an FBI agent, and they're in Maine. Ooh, idea for future book, where they're all under a spell …

And now to continue the epic loads of laundry while moving around enough that my hip won't stiffen.

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