Friday Unwind #12: Scotland Yard; Cry Macho; Korhaan; Empty Mansions; No Eggs; That Stinks
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🔍 SCOTLAND YARD
I’m so confused (Not uncommon). The famous Scotland Yard isn’t in Scotland. And it isn’t in a yard. Um…what and where the heck is it? And why are those people called ‘Bobbies’? Do they wear bobby socks?
In 1829 Sir Robert (Bobby…yes, the Bobbie connection) Peel introduced an act in Parliament to form the London Police Force. This new force replaced the Bow Street Patrols and the River Police (who fought crime along the Thames).
Two men were charged with organizing this new police force. Colonel Charles Rowan and Richard Mayne.
These two roomies lived at 4 Whitehall Place, a private residence opening on to a beautiful courtyard. That yard was originally a medieval palace that housed Scottish royalty when they visited London. Scotland Yard. Aha.
One of the first members of Scotland Yard was Inspector Charles Frederick Field, a charismatic policeman who was often accompanied on his nightly rounds by Charles Dickens. Field served as a model for Inspector Bucket in Dicken’s novel, Bleak House.
I feel more informed… and less confused, at least for the moment.
🎬 GROOVIE MOVIE: CRY MACHO
When I lived in Carmel by-the-sea I met Clint Eastwood… and I didn’t even glam on him. It was Christmas Eve. He was walking along San Carlos Street after delivering Christmas cheer to staff at his (then) restaurant Hog’s Breath Inn. I was coming toward him on my way to the famous Carmel post office. Eye contact. Smiles. “Merry Christmas”, we said nearly simultaneously. That’s it. What, you expected more? Let’s get real!
Oh, ok, haha, I’m reviewing his movie, Cry Macho. He directly, produced, starred. A 91 year old broken down rodeo cowboy might have been a bit of a stretch, but being Clint, he pulled it off.
After a rodeo accident left Mike (Clint) with a broken back, ending his career, his friend Howard (Dwight Yoakam) helped pull him our of a booze induced life. Years later, Howard convinces Mike to drive to Mexico to retrieve his 13 year old son, Rafa, a rebellious teen who has been living with Howard’s wild ex.
Although the movie focuses on the danger filled return of Rafa, the discovery of lies, hidden agendas, and a cock fighting rooster named Macho…there is an underlying sweet story of redemption, doing the right thing, and making good choices.
I liked it. But then, it was Clint.
It’s not Spring time, but who doesn’t love a cute courtship, especially when it’s a South African Korhaan (you know that bird, right?) that apparently learned how to moon walk from Michael Jackson. He’s got game, but will he get the girl?
📚 BOOK NOOK: EMPTY MANSIONS
In 2009 Pulitzer Prize journalist Bill Dedman noticed a mansion for sale that had been vacant for sixty years. His curiosity led him to a story that spanned three centuries, culminating in a battle over a $300 million estate.
At the heart of the estate battle was the reclusive heiress, Huguette Clark. At her death, at age 104, she had been living in a hospital for twenty years even though there was nothing wrong with her. She grew up in the largest home in New York City… 121 rooms. She owned palatial homes in California, New York, and Connecticut but she didn’t live in them. She owned paintings by Degas and Renoir and a Stradivarius violin, but she devoted her life to painting, giving gifts to others, and guarding her privacy.
Her father was William Andrews Clark, a self-made copper industrialist, who bribed legislators to become a senator, founded Las Vegas, and was nearly as wealthy as a name you know, the Rockefellers.
The same Huguette held first class stateroom tickets for the Titanic’s second voyage and nine decades later, her life was touched by 9/11.
‘Empty Mansions’ explores the complex life of Huguette, her family, her French boyfriend, her maid who received more than $30 million in gifts, and the family fighting to inherit her fortune.
Can money buy happiness? Find out in this fascinating, true story.
PS - The book is full of rich photos and portraits, a sensuous addition to the story.
🍜 NO EGGS
What do you do when you’re desperate for something sweet, you live a half hour from the nearest grocery, and you have no eggs? (short of just spooning sugar from the 5lb. bag)
Cinnamon Sugar Pinwheels to the rescue
1 pie crust (store bought or homemade)
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cinnamon
Roll out the crust
place dots of butter on the dough
mix the cinnamon and sugar, then sprinkle over the dough
Roll up the dough, then slice it into 1” ‘wheels’
Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes
If you want a bigger sugar high, mix some confectioner’s sugar with a little milk and drizzle it over each pinwheel
Enjoy! Or maybe you live closer to the store…
🦨 THAT STINKS
We have skunks. “How many?” you ask. I don’t really know, but every night, while I am snuggled under the covers counting sheep, these sweet little things are out partying and gouging grub holes all over my yard. 🦨
In less lucid moments, I’ve considered sneaking out at night to scare them away, but when sanity returns I realize that there’s a possible error in that plan.
So each morning I rake the mulch back into place, preparing it for their next feast.
Having nothing better to do than rake mulch, my curiosity dove down the skunk hole (formerly known as the rabbit hole) to find out… what else should I know about skunks? Frankly, it all kind of stinks.
I thought skunks were nocturnal. Nope. They are crepuscular. Did you know that word? I didn’t. Skunks are most active at dusk and at dawn.
I’ve heard they make good pets. Let’s see… wild skunks are a definite no-no because of that whole stink factor. Domestic skunks, however, have their scent glands removed at around 2-5 weeks old.
Be prepared to cook. They can’t digest processed foods, so you need to prepare their meals fresh. Every time.
You can train them to flip that whole sleep schedule, which is good unless you are also crepuscular.
But don’t think of leaving them alone in the house. Unless you like your drawers, cupboards, and even refrigerators yanked open. And you love having your towels, blankets, and other soft things grabbed and piled into a makeshift den.
If that’s you, go for it. Me? I’m sticking with my indoor plants.
Want more Pepe’ Le Pew in your life? The video below is for you.
Is it just me? Did you already know about Scotland Yard? (please say you didn’t so I don’t feel like a complete idiot…)
What can you say about Clint?
Can you moon walk?
Who knows the meaning of the French word Huguette?
What’s for dessert tonight?
Fess up…you own a pet skunk…
Hi…..haha, you thought I’d forget this one, didn’t you…
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Wherever you are, I hope life is sunny. 🌞❤Heather
PS: My other publication, Kindness Magnet, is out getting a makeover. But you can still subscribe (Oh, please do. She may have a different name when you click this link). She’s a little wonky right now, but she’ll be back in a few weeks. You’ll want to be there for the before and after pics of her makeover. I promise not to show the surgery… 💚🤕