philosophymom (philosophymom) wrote,

Eyes on the prize

This week's Friday Five ask about things I've been eyeballing.

1. What gadget did you most recently obtain, and which gadget do you have your eyes on?
My most recently purchased gadget is a Waterpik Water Flosser, and, though it arrived a couple weeks ago, it is still in the box. I'm not good about flossing, and this is supposed to be an easier but just-as-effective alternative. We shall see.

Not sure I am the best person for part two of the question: I'm just not a gadget-head. There's always a learning curve involved in figuring out how to work them, and if the thing the gadget does is something I'm already getting done any other way, then I'd rather spend that learning time on something more fun (or something that isn't getting done at all). This is the reason the Instant Pot I bought myself before Christmas is still in the box.

So I don't have my eye on any new gadgets, but my son sure wishes I would buy a battery-powered lawn mower. Sadly for him, our electric one still works just fine.

2. What business establishment did you most recently visit for the first time, and which do you have your eyes on?
The answers are a pair of local-to-me restaurants that you won't know. Coincidentally, they are both non-chain Italian joints that had been well-established local favorites for years, then had to close during 2020, and have now re-opened under new management and with new names (but still presenting as Italian). Oh, and they're located less than a mile apart, both along an over-developed stretch of interstate in what you might call an under-esteemed part of the county.

The one I've visited, Bruno's Land and Sea Restaurant, had been the more white-table-cloth-y of the two back when it was Giovanni's. I'd say the new version reads a little more down-market -- or, better, "family restaurant"-y -- but, to be fair, the ambiance of any restaurant is bound to take a hit on trivia night. Yes, my weekly pub trivia game has just (this month) started back up, and Bruno's is its new, post-COVID home. Based on my three meals there, I'd call the food decent but unremarkable ... or maybe I just haven't found my dish yet).

However, it's made me curious about the other transformed Italian place less than a mile from it, the clunkily-christened "Venetian Italian Eatery" (formerly "Venetian Palace"). The old "Venetian" was definitely a "family restaurant" (with all that that implies, good and bad), and I ate there a lot over the decades on account of its being a BIG favorite of my parents (they liked the pizza and subs; my go-to was the Greek salad, with rice pudding for dessert). The new edition is obviously trying to capitalize on the old place's popularity in the community, but it's now part of a restaurant group (not quite a chain) with a somewhat standardized menu, and its website suggests something more up-market than before. I do intend to visit at some point , and I'm curious as to whether I'll recognize any old flavors on the new menu (as well as whether I'll care).

3. What movie did you most recently see, and which do you you have your eyes on?
I'm only counting things seen in a movie theater, which for me is, though not the only way to see a movie, nevertheless the absolute best way to see one. And that means my most recent one was In the Heights, which I have already said here that I enjoyed very much.

The one I still have my eye on to watch in a theater is Black Widow. Normally I go to Marvel flicks with my sons, but Number Two now has two sons of his own, so I played babysitter and let Two & my daughter-in-law take Three. I'm fine seeing it on my own; just need to get around to it.

4. What reading material did you most recently consume, and which do you have your eyes on?
Most recent is Ben H. Winters' 2012 novel The Last Policeman, a pre-apocalyptic police procedural mystery. It's pretty thoughtful for a genre book (does that sound snooty? "Genre books" are about all I read!), and I was invested in the narrator from the start.

Since I liked that one so well, my eye is now on the sequel, Countdown City (and its sequel, World of Trouble -- because, of course, it's a trilogy). Thank goodness for inter-library loan!

5. Which current event has been of greatest interest to you this week, and which do you think will grab your attention next week?
Not sure I can pick just one. I mean, Jeff Bezos' space boondoggle* bothered me for a couple days, but so did the Western wildfires that have them choking in the streets of New York.

* a word that's worth a look-up

Next week, I'm sure it'll be the Olympics.
Tags: friday five, memes

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