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January 23rd, 2014

So. It’s 2014.

And as always, I have been writing. Just finished, or mostly finished, a book. It’s sitting on my editor’s desk, anyway. And I’ve gone on to other things.
But as always, after a deadline, I am looking around at the house, and wondering what the hell happened. Nothing it clean and there are a lot of started and unfinished jobs. The biggest of those is the upstairs bathroom, which I started ripping apart (very slowly) last June. We are now up to the point where it kind of really needs to get done. It is a long walk downstairs to the only working toilet in the house.

I got as much work out of #2 son as I could, during the Christmas holiday. But he is back in school now. This means, I am the one left holding the trowel. And mastic. And many, many boxes of ceramic tile. Also, a tile saw. I am overcoming my perfectly sensible terror of power tools, and learning to make angled cuts. As of this moment, I still have all ten fingers. Wish me luck.

But I am busy, not dead. This means, I am trying to get caught up on some of the movies I missed, while chained to the desk. Saving Mr. Banks: thumbs up. Philomena: thumbs way up. But even I am not able to do three chick clicks in a row. For the sake of my husband, last night’s choice needed to be something where things blow up.

I considered and discarded Lone Survivor. As I mentioned earlier, this is the BLEAK midwinter. I do not want to go to a movie where I get all invested in the characters, only to have them die on me. There is something about the title of Lone Survivor that tells me this is not a story about a plucky team that makes it through alive. It gives me the same vibe that the theme music from Titanic did. When the song is all about how my heart will go on without you, I already know that Leo is not going to make it up onto that piece of flotsam.

So, Jack Ryan it is. The fact that this is supposed to be his first adventure of many tells me not to be too worried about whether he’s going to make it. The same goes for his wife. And things will definitely blow up. There is also the added advantage of staring at Chris Pine for two hours. I can do that.
So, I am at the movie, and Chris Pine is killing a guy in a bathroom. It’s a really great bathroom. And I’m thinking, ‘nice tile.’ There is also a really great, rainfall shower in the middle of the room. I could die happy in a bathroom like that, even if Chris Pine’s foot was on my neck. But he’d have to let me use the shower first. The scene ends, and Chris Pine is shaken and stirred. There is broken glass and ceramic, and marble. And a great big dead body. He calls in a handler who tells him to leave the room for a couple of hours.

When he comes back, the body is gone, and the room is pristine, except for a little bit of wet calk.

And now, I am wondering who I have to kill to get the CIA to fix my bathroom. Clearly, they have skills that I can’t get around here. The first two plumbers I tried to hire took one look at what was already there, laughed and walked away. But somewhere in Jack Ryan’s Moscow, there was a CIA agent that had to smuggle a replacement bidet into a 5 star hotel, and plumb it in. And it didn’t take them 6 months and countless trips to Home Depot.

The mind boggles.