My weekend was pretty uneventful until Sunday -- yesterday -- and that was largely because Shobhit has been sick. He has expressed interest in seeing Black Panther, and I had thought perhaps we could go see that on Friday evening, which he was feeling too ill to do -- he stayed home from work on Thursday, but went back to work on Friday, and perhaps should not have. He told me Friday that he had been feeling "up and down" when I asked him about it after getting home from work. I can't even remember how we spent that evening now. I'm sure we watched some Roseanne on Amazon Prime. It's been interesting seeing that show again, for the first time since it first aired in the early nineties, because I keep remembering watching certain episodes with Mom, and probably at least at times with Christopher, at the time. At times the show goes into meta territory that was very much ahead of its time and certainly flew over my head as a teenager.
Shobhit does still get a Social Review point for Saturday, since he went with me to walk to the Capitol Hill branch library to pick up a library book on the last day I had to pick it up -- I still have about fifty pages (out of 412) left to read of The Master and Margarita, which shouldn't take me too long, and hopefully I can actually finish this new one within the space of the three weeks I can have it checked out before incurring overdue fees. Unlike The Master and Margarita, which is now a pretty unknown Russian novel from the thirties (written) and sixties (published), I won't be able to renew Thanks, Obama: My Hopey Changey White House Years after three weeks because that one has 19 holds on it and you can't renew books with holds by other people on them. Although, I see now that the library has 24 copies of the book so I suppose turnaround time would be minimal if I returned it.
Anyway, I digress! We also picked up a few groceries for dinner last night, and on the way back, Shobhit suggested I use my Chinook Book coupon for Caffe Ladro to get a free food item worth $4 or less with the purchase of a beverage. I told him the only way he'd get a point is if we sat to eat it there. This is totally gaming the system, but it still counts. If we just walk to do some shopping and come back home, that's not socializing. If we sit to eat somewhere, however briefly, that is. Shobhit didn't want to buy a coffee and so he suggested I get a drink; I got the smallest size of a chai latte, and then we split a slice of apple galette, which was quite tasty in spite of their toaster heater clearly not working properly and it came in our plate at room temperature.
This was me "skipping lunch," which I tried to do Saturday to help get my weight gain under control: I wound up having 3/4 of a parmesan bagel with butter, in lieu of lunch; then had half a slice of apple galette, and a chai latte. We had gotten five 3-cheese Red Baron Pizzas from QFC thanks to both a regular sales price combined with a weekend digital sale taking them down to $1.99 each -- five was the maximum to purchase for the sale -- and so we split one of those for dinner, after adding chopped vegetables and veggie pepperoni. I also had two cocktails. So, I went up from 150 lbs Saturday morning to 151 lbs yesterday morning after, you know, "skipping lunch."
I skipped lunch for real yesterday though, unless you count the two celery sticks with peanut butter I brought as a snack to eat at the movie Shobhit and I went to see -- Love, Simon, which I liked a bit more than Shobhit did. He later said "the script was weak," which I would kind of agree with. But, as I also countered later, that hardly matters, especially considering the impact on kids the movie is happening, which I started to see on Twitter just this morning. I basically addressed this in my review: there are legitimate criticisms of this movie, pretty much all of which will be lost on its target audience of teens and young adults, which kind of renders them moot considering what the movie represents and what it means to people. Sometimes these things don't have to be perfect to make a difference.
I messaged Ivan after I got home to tell him it took me a month but I finally finished off his peanut butter. He had left a bulk container of it (among several other food items) from Central Co-op and I only recently thought to use it on celery. If Shobhit were still not living at home, I surely would have finished it off weeks ago, but with Shobhit home I almost never have the opportunity to make peanut butter and banana sandwiches anymore. He hates peanut butter and I thus have the opportunity to eat it so seldom that by the time I do, he's eaten up all the bread.
That said, I'm thinking of buying more peanut butter just for the celery. It's a tasty snack, and far healthier than eating popcorn or candy at movies. Taking that as a homemade snack actually worked quite well for me yesterday, and I may take a page out of Laney's book and start doing that from now on.
The movie was at 11:30 am, thus being a before-noon showing at an AMC theatre that costs $6.92 with tax. When we went to a movie last weekend, they told me I could use my MoviePass to cover "up to $15" and thus they could cover two tickets with it, which delighted us both. But when I mentioned that to Elden in a Facebook comment thread, he mentioned that he would have declined because this is actually against MoviePass's Tems of Service. Shobhit saw this and got paranoid -- he's right that it's too good a value as it is to risk getting my account terminated, which I did also read on Saturday has happened to some people. So, at Shobhit's suggestion, I called the number on the back of the card to ask for clarification. Their online customer service to date has been nearly nonexistent, but on the phone I was able to take the option of getting a callback once agents reached me in line; the call came within minutes; and when I asked if the theatre was not supposed to do that the woman confirmed, "Certainly not." So there you have it. Yesterday I used my card to cover my own ticket and paid the $6.92 for Shobhit's. I was even able to do this at one of the kiosks, which deprived a cashier the opportunity even to offer, as had happened the previous weekend.
So we walked back home and I wrote a longer than usual (more than 1000 words) review, which I thought might happen, as the adult response to a movie like Love, Simon can be a little complicated. I think I did a pretty good job. It took longer than usual too, probably closer to ninety minutes than the more typical hour it can take me to write a movie review.
Then it was time to finish preparing for Claudia and Dylan's arrival for dinner. I had already done some unusually deep cleaning before leaving for the movie -- I Pine-Sol cleaned the floors in both bathrooms and the area in front of the front door and the kitchen; Shobhit actually did some housework himself and cleaned the windows. I saved the vacuuming until after the movie review was written because I wanted there to be the least amount of time for cat hair to build up again. Once that was done, we killed time watching some more Roseanne and then around 5:00 we set about deep frying the "batura" flatbreads Shobhit makes from scratch.
We finished after making fifteen of them, and then got back to Roseanne as we waited for them to arrive. I had told Claudia 5:30, and she messaged me with an apology around 5:45 that they had been looking for parking -- totally understandable on Capitol Hill. So, it was roughly 5:50 by the time they actually made it to our door. The food was set out and ready to eat as soon as they arrived, so we all sat at the table pretty much immediately. In fact they never even sat anywhere else.
They brought Claudia's 12-year-old son, Jasper, who I've told her multiple times is always welcome but she always double checks anyway, so we pulled the table out, as it’s usually set up against the wall under the glass counter / bar that is raised and sticks out a couple feet opposite the kitchen counter, into the space of the dining area. The edge of that glass is thus at about head height of someone sitting on that side of the table, and I figured someone sitting there might hit their head on it -- which Jasper did several times, he said, although never too hard.
Shobhit usually makes way too much food, but this worked out well because he forgot I told him Jasper was coming and so he thought he was preparing for four rather than five -- and I suppose you could say six functionally speaking, since a 12-year-old boy could be said to eat for two. And Shobhit made three main dishes, not even counting the rice or the baturas: eggplant squash, which I would regard as his second-best dish (my favorite, eternally, is shahi paneer), or third of you want to count samosas which technically are more of an appetizer but those are better than anything else he makes -- but he only makes them on super-special occasions as they are so involved and time-consuming; garbanzo beans; and baked bell peppers stuffed with a potato-based dish that was also very tasty. He's got a thing for stuffed peppers over the past year or so. Then he also made an Indian dessert called halwa made from Cream of Wheat (which I detest) but without any nuts, which I did not care for. I took one bite and was like, okay I'm good. I'm not sure how much Claudia and Dylan liked it; either they genuinely liked it all right or they were just polite about it, saying they don't like their desserts to be too sweet -- which this certainly was not. Jasper was the one who, somewhat bizarrely, loved it -- he had two helpings and then even took mine as a third, not caring that I had taken a bite of it already.
I still got some dessert, as Claudia brought a small, homemade hot milk cake, hers round with two layers of whipped cream. She told us she tries to make something every week, and has tried in vain to perfect this recipe, and so she brought it since she already had a little cake handy. Works for me! It was way better than that Indian dessert, anyway. I had a small slice of it, in addition to the glass of rosé they brought ("It was pink and bubbly, like you!" Claudia told me). I thought back to when they had me over to their place for brunch in the fall -- and I brought precisely nothing. Next time perhaps I should.
Claudia liked the eggplant dish enough to accept the offer of leftovers to take home, along with the last two baturas -- which means 13 of them got eaten: Shobhit and I each had three; Claudia and Dylan each had two; Jasper must have had three as well. Jasper delighted in giving us riddles to solve, which I can never get even when they're blindingly obvious; Shobhit immediately knew the first but was stumped by the second. Jasper was very lively and animated about this. I only wish I could have been as self-assured as that kid seems to be at the age of twelve. Shobhit even said of him soon after they left, "He's a nice kid." In fact, literally the second we closed the door after saying goodbye, Shobhit said, "That was a nice visit," which made me happy. I even had to text Claudia both those things, and she was especially glad to hear that Jasper had made a good impression. I figured she would be.
[posted 12:27 pm]