All posts filed under: Films In Review

Saturday Topics

One of the things I do appreciate at my day job is, at the start of any zoom meeting, the host would say: Good morning, good afternoon and good evening to all of you and thank you for joining. Not sure about the rest of the attendees, but I sort of take a step back and reflect on all those getting ready to start the day, the ones planning their lunch and even the poor souls who have to be on way past their working hours to attend a global meeting…I wonder about the scene behind the image of them sitting still in front of the camera. For me it is always at 5a.m., having rolled out of bed, with a cup of tea in hand, hoping no one would need me to talk about anything so intense. What do you do during a zoom call? I woke up very early this morning to get to the local grocer to pick up eggs and some breakfast goods. On the drive back, I actually pulled over …

Travel: Destinations in Film

I’ve seen different folks going in and out of the neighbor’s house across the street for the past month or so. And right away I realized they are Airbnb-ing (hosting) their property. It’s not that I am stalking, but while parking my car, or doing landscape maintenance, I see different folks in and out, taxis and Ubers pulling up. A call is made in the driveway and definitely a code is shared and next thing you know, the garage door opens and these different individuals, men mostly, go inside. Days later a maid service comes in to clean up and then the family of 6 return home. Which gets me thinking, where do they go for those days while a stranger is in their home? I mean the children are of school age, all under ten going to a physical school instead of online? How does this family juggle such a lifestyle? So I decided to do a search on Airbnb and discovered there are countless homes around my block alone that host vacationers or …

If My Weeks were Summed Up In A Slide Deck…

This has become a thing it seems for me…where on Fridays, I feel the need to recap…kind of sort of what I do at work with a slide deck of where things are. It almost feel like a series. Season 1, Episode 3 and so on. So with that said, here’s this weeks episode. After a not-so-unplugged time-off last week, I jumped right into my days, doing what we all need to do at our workplace. I pulled 12-18 hours days catching up and preparing for a Thursday morning presentation. I know I was running on fumes and adrenaline all mixed up into one. Because just as I felt myself crashing, I turned to some form of caffeine to get me going again. At one point at nearly 2:30 in the morning, I got into bed and turned off the lights, thinking I would get a few hours sleep. But ended up on my phone sending emails and instant messages to our teams spread across the world before their day ended and mine -on-the-clock- began. …

Happy Weekend and all…

I love waking up to a message from our global team in the UK – wishing me a happy weekend. Funny how that works. 6a.m. in California while it is 2p.m. in the UK, where everyone-well at least for our company-is getting ready to unplug from all things work. Anyway, what are you up to this weekend? As I mentioned in my last post, I was going to chase Fall. But, due to the dry weather we are experiencing in California, the leaves are not turning color as beautifully as I had imagined in my head. At least in California. Not sure in other parts of the world. Although someone I work with in the east coast mentioned how green and plush all things were in his state and he wondered if winter was really around the corner… Lots happened this past week. Mostly binge-watched a Netflix mini-series and I have to say I am actually traumatized from being able to decode the underlying message in the series. Have you seen Midnight Mass? I can’t …

Weekend Thoughts

What are you doing this weekend – is a question most of us ask in text form, or on a call with someone and even through a slack channel at work. So I thought I might ask here – what are you doing this weekend? The sun has finally decided to burst through the heavy fog along the coast of San Francisco and I am excited to report that I am actually going to spend some time walking through Golden Gate Park – without a coat and hat on and even gloves during our so called ‘summer months’ I am also going to try a new twist on chicken from a recipe here. And this cake – oh my how delicious it all sounds. Also on the list of weekend to-dos is read this novel I’ve picked up in Sonoma at my favorite tiny bookstore. I’ll be dreaming about a trip to Ireland – someday, when all is safe and sound and masks are hopefully a thing of the past. Do you ever see a …

Friday Wrap and Chasing Sun

Still feeling a bit queasy but the ‘show must go on’ in my case ‘life must go on. While perched against a dozen pillows in bed, I stared at the television set in a lowest volume setting possible and watched the silliest of films the last couple of days, in between much napping to recover or try to anyway. This weekend, I am going to chase the sun since the city will now remain gray for the next two months. Another drive somewhere warm, a picnic in a central park, a nap under the trees sounds wonderful and one I am aiming to achieve this coming weekend. No chores, no worries, simply do my best to soak it up. How about you? What are your plans? Just in case you are wondering – the featured image of Golden Gate Park taken by your’s truly

Food: Dinner Tonight – Beef Bourguignon

Although this recipe calls for beef short ribs, I am going to go with grass-fed organic beef stew chunks I’ve purchased from the grocers and was wondering which direction to take our dinner tonight. For the stew: 1/2 pound boneless beef short ribs, cut into 1-inch cubes 1 pinch each kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 1 large shallot, thinly sliced 4 garlic cloves, crushed 1 tablespoon tomato paste 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence 1 dried or fresh bay leaf 1 cup red wine (I used a Côtes de Bordeaux) 1 cup water 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce 4 ounces cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced 2 small carrots, thickly cut on the bias (about 4 ounces) Mashed potatoes, pasta, or rice, for serving For the gremolata: 2 tablespoons panko bread crumbs 1/2 garlic clove, grated 1/2 lemon, zested 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 1 teaspoon olive oil 1 pinch each kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste  {more} Featured image and full recipe credit here On another note – what films have you seen lately? If you’ve run out ideas, may I suggest…

Food: My Choice of Comfort Food – Pasta

Even on the warmest of these days, I crave Pasta paired with a glass of wine.  So, when I am asked ‘what’s for dinner’ I simply smile and everyone around me gets it. In fact, while on zoom with family yesterday, we compared pasta recipes, which naturally got me craving again – you guest it –  pasta for dinner tonight and the wine of course. Now, I normally don’t mix ground beef and Italian sausage, but I think for the sake of tonight’s efforts for positive thinking – this is the recipe I’ll be following: RECIPE 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced 1 pound Italian sausage, hot or mild or a mixture, cut into coins or crumbled 1 pound ground beef 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste 1 stick cinnamon, if you have one 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes (optional) 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, if you have them 2 teaspoons dried basil, if you have them 1 (28-ounce) can peeled whole or crushed tomatoes 1 big glug of red wine, if there is some to hand Kosher salt and freshly ground black …

Culture: I Watched A French Film and It Helped

In my efforts to remain calm and positive as the captain of my ship here in San Francisco, I decided to open a bottle of red and watch a film that would,for a few hours, take me far away –  like Europe,  and in particular the French wine region. Now, if you are not familiar with French films, they tend to run long – sometimes over two hours, to include every detail and then some. Which I love about – film makers outside of the U.S. – They do away with too much editing, to keep true to the story. The other aspect of French films, is the English translation – which is the only thing I can relate to – of their beautiful language, metaphors  and to some extend wisdom. If you listen to the narrative throughout a film carefully, you might just pick up on it. This aspect keeps me nostalgic because I’d like to think I was a Frenchwoman in some former life, and therefore able to relate. Er…perhaps it could be …