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    Arbutus @replies

    I’ve been listening a lot to Fred Hersch’s absolutely gorgeous pandemic recording. Here’s one track, but the whole thing is beautiful.

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    @nerys   Congratulations on your Dad’s recovery! That’s really great news, although I’m sorry to hear about his continued hospitalization. Your parents share their anniversary with my mom and stepfather, who had their 44th this year. They sent me a photo of their steak dinner, complete with candles and flowers, for which they would normally have gone out. Being Albertans, a steakhouse has become traditional for their anniversary (I guess also as a break from turkey!).

    When I last looked at CraveTV, you couldn’t get it without already having a cable subscription. Has this changed? If so, I should have a look at it. Canada’s slowness in regard to streaming has been painful. We cut the cable a number of years ago, and it was amazing to discover how far behind we were at that time. My son used to have to go through all kinds of illicit contortions to watch Premier League soccer, although he has recently found a streaming sports service where he can watch legally. I guess we reach the 21st century eventually! 🙂

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    @blenkinsopthebrave   I don’t know that there is one. I don’t have cable either. I’ve always purchased my Dr. Who on iTunes. $4 will get you the episode plus any special features. The new episodes usually become available for download around midnight, after they air in North America. The bonus is no ads, which I gather are a nuisance on the broadcast!  🙂

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    Goodness. It’s so nice to see you in my inbox. I’ve been meaning to come on and reply and I apologize for not doing so sooner, things have been a bit random around here recently! Where is Arbutus? Holed up in central Vancouver, trying very hard to stay kind, calm, and safe. 🙂 (I’m strong on safe and reasonably good with calm. It’s the kind part that I have to work at, sometimes!) It’s been a long year. Some health issues in the house but not Covid-related, and largely dealt with now. We’re all being pretty cautious, but thankfully, conditions here allow us a lot of movement, although we’re sadly missing the ability to go to concerts and sit in restaurants and so on. Since we can’t go out for cocktails anymore I have taken my bartending to a whole new level. And this month I made a cocktail advent calendar with a seasonal drink recipe in each window. Each day, Mr. Arbutus and Arbutus Jr. take out the latest and I make it. Pomegranate gin fizz last night! 🙂

    I have an impressive collection of masks now, in various colours and themes. I try to stay bright. A lot of them came from my sister, who says she has sent me a Ruth Bader Ginsberg one.

    @thane16 Puro, I’m very, very sorry to hear about your mom. Love and hugs to you all. @nerys, I trust your dad is continuing his recovery. It’s awful the toll this thing is taking among our elderly, especially in the long-term care. In Canada, where we like to think highly of our health care, it’s been a rude awakening to see the gaping holes in some areas.

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    A belated Happy Canada Day to @winston, @nerys, @blenkinsopthebrave, and everyone in Canada! I hope everyone in the UK and around the world is keeping safe and sane through all the upheaval of 2020. Strange and exhausting times. And for tomorrow, wishing a happy and, most importantly, safe Fourth of July to all our American friends. Virtual hugs to all.

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    @psymon     While it’s entirely possible that Yaz will leave the team, I’m not convinced by the argument that her disobeying the Doctor means anything. Isn’t that what all companions do?

    I didn’t get the feeling that she dismissed Jack’s warning without care, but given what was at stake, when would the Doctor ever have done differently than what she did? She tried taking the Cyberium on herself, which I thought was pretty great, actually, since it was killing Shelley. But presented with the imminent destruction of earth and all that future history, what else could she have done?

    @blenkinsopthebrave     I wondered as Graham wandered around in search of the loo, hadn’t he ever watched any BBC costume drama? Don’t we all know about chamber pots?

    @mudlark     As to the Doctor’s nice, tidy rebuff of Byron’s advances, well, she did make the rules: No snogging Byron!

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    Well, this was fun, and surprising, too. (As I have determinedly been avoiding spoilers, even little ones, I was good and surprised when the “traveller” turned out to be the Lone Cyberman.) I enjoyed the setting and the guest actors, and felt that the creepy/scary component was just right. I agree with @bluesqueakpip that, for whatever reason, the historicals have definitely been some of the strongest episodes, which works for me since they’re always my favourites!  🙂

    I really liked the tone of the Doctor’s response to the appearance of the Lone Cyberman—the statement about team structure, and the reminder (or perhaps, for this team, new information) about the kind of choices that fall to the Doctor, and that she essentially stands alone. Also, I thought her fear and loathing of the Cybermen was put across really well, in a contained sort of fury that I felt was really effective.

    @miapatrick     I felt that the differences between the Lone Cyberman and Frankenstein actually worked very well. Either the Lone Cyberman provided the seed, and Mary Shelley grew the plant. Or the seed was provided as it was in RL, but the encounter with the Cyberman could have inspired the emotional aspects that might be packed into such a scenario. In any case, we wouldn’t want to see MS’s genius diluted with the idea that she only wrote what she saw!

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    @nerys   Very sorry to hear about your cat. Hugs!

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    Thinking a bit more about this. This Doctor has occasionally referred to her previous self, saying things like “back when I was a bloke” and so on. I’m trying to remember, but I don’t think that this is something the Doctor has commonly done. He doesn’t say things like, “I met that alien before, when I was into bowties”, and so on. Once the immediate regeneration period is over, I don’t think the Doctor really considers his older selves any more. When he has encountered one of them in a multi-Doc episode, he always seems a bit taken aback by the previous reality. Has he forgotten? Or is it that thing of when you really look at yourself in a mirror, you don’t match the image in your mind? (Personally, I remember myself as better-looking and definitely younger!)

    Not sure where I’m going with this. I’m just wondering, if my memory is correct and this is new behaviour for the Doctor, what does it mean? Is the Doctor herself trying to remember that she is still the same person? And is she happier now with more companions, because it’s easier to keep things on the surface? We saw this week that she definitely still does not like to travel alone. But she’s having more trouble accepting the loyalty of her friends than she did in the past.

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    I really like @bluesqueakpip‘s take on memory and “everything you think you know is a lie”. It also occurs to me that tying in references to the Doctor’s past selves can help bridge the emotional disconnect between regenerations, both the Doctor’s disconnect from his own past selves, and ours. It’s easy to say it’s the same character, but it’s not what we feel when faced with a Doctor completely different in looks, age, accent, attitude, and now even gender.

    On the issue of the Doctor and her many Companions, the Chibnall era thus far has been strongly harkening back to some of the older, pre Gap eras of the show. How well that works for each of us is an individual thing. I never minded the periods when the Doctor travelled in a group, and I don’t mind it now. I first came upon the show in the very late Tom Baker era, so companion clusters were something I got used to right away. The Fourth Doctor also set the gold standard for me, and I’ll admit that I never felt quite as simpatico with an incarnation again until Capaldi. But I have always found things to enjoy in every Doctor, even the ones that aren’t “mine”, meaning I’m fairly easy to please! 🙂

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    @blenkinsopthebrave      I watch on iTunes, so I don’t see it until Monday morning. Having just done so, I can now say that I really enjoyed this! I found it properly creepy, and interesting watching all the threads come together. I enjoyed the looks at the “real life” stories of the companions.

    @jimthefish    For what it’s worth, I think that society generally doesn’t always take seriously the mental health issues of teenagers. I can imagine it being glossed over by Yaz’s superiors if she now seems solid (especially if there were a need to be filled).

    @rob    It’s a good point, though. I like the idea of taking the first female Doctor in the opposite of an emotional direction. And I actually felt that it would have been clear to Graham, who is very intuitive, that the Doctor wasn’t unsympathetic to what he was telling her. But as she is a Doctor who is very much about rolling up her sleeves, getting to work, and fixing things, she might have been at a loss as his problem isn’t one that can actually be fixed as such. It’s actually a pretty common communication challenge.

    I loved Tibo’s story about going out to the store for human contact, and finding nothing but self-serve checkouts! This is a pet peeve of mine, and fortunately they are still not common in grocery stores here. I can relate to the value of a five-minute chat with the person ringing up my groceries! Human beings, and so on.

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    Well, I enjoyed this quite a lot. It was fun seeing the different members of Team Tardis showing up into the different ongoing situations, and working out how they all connected up. So glad that Adam and Jake were given a happy ending, didn’t think that was coming and I was so pissed off!

    I liked the lack of an overt villain in this one. While it seemed to me that the Doctor was clearly appalled at the notion of the aliens deliberately infecting earth for their own reasons, I think she also wanted to help Suki redeem herself. Sadly, it was too late for that.

    @psymon       I didn’t find the inclusion of Adam and Jake as a couple awkward at all. Personally, I feel that the awkwardness comes from the fact that we still need to be told when two people of the same sex are a couple. My own mind still defaults “brothers” or “school mates”, whereas if either of them had been a woman, I would probably have gone straight to “former partner”, based on Jake’s reaction to the news story. This is my own bias, but I don’t think it’s uncommon. I face the same challenge in my own writing, when I try to make things like race or sexual orientation implicit without awkward exposition. I thought the writing here did a reasonably good job of it. And I enjoyed the exploration of the struggle with self-worth that can arise in any kind of unequal relationship.

    I too found myself wondering about Jaz’s behaviour. @spider has it bang on, I was also thinking that she is becoming a bit “Clara-like”.

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    @peacefrog    I didn’t know that was Pearl Jam. Cool! And Tom Petty, so beloved and so missed.

    @whisht    Whenever I hear the “one tonne” joke, I think of this old SNL bit. For some reason, it has stayed with me when better (probably) bits have vanished in the mists of time. Guantanamera!

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    Well, I started off mildly underwhelmed, mainly because I never much cared for the Judoon. I didn’t expect this. 🙂

    Oddly enough, after being critical of the “kitchen sink” aspect of Orphan 55, I didn’t feel that way this time. While that one was basically a stand-alone episode, this feels like we are being given the ends of a lot of threads that will eventually come together.

    Loved Jo Martin’s Doctor. She had a bit of a War Doctor vibe. Not just the violence, but also that sense of being a secret. Something very strange is going on. We have the Master’s clue about Gallifrey, Captain Jack’s clue about the Cybermen, and a mysterious Doctor that doesn’t seem to come from either her past or her future. She feels more like a splinter. And interesting that she didn’t seem to recognize the sonic screwdriver.

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    In the spirit of Robbie Burns Day and Lunar New Year. Wanted something a little more Asian but couldn’t find the right thing, so here’s some Scottish big band instead. Gung haggis fat choy! (That is a real thing, btw.)

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    @peacefrog   I hadn’t heard about David Olney. Heartbreaking.

    I love The Band, have posted them on here before. In amongst all the perfect bits, I’m a big fan of Garth Hudson’s organ playing.

    Also, nice little Talking Orange Heads mashup.  🙂

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    @thane16   I think Mum would say “the sound was found as early as the 3rd century BC in…Crete.”

    This made me smile. I once heard June Tabor introduce a song that she dated back to the 19th century. When she began, I recognized as originating in the Renaissance. Nothing’s as new as you think it is. Maybe some 16th-century listener knew it from his grandfather! I don’t remember what the song was, but it would have been something along these lines:

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    Wow, I can’t keep up with all the excitement around here! So much fabulous stuff. My American-born husband introduced me to Tom Lehrer many years ago. My father-in-law is tone-deaf and has little interest in music, but as a Harvard-educated liberal, he greatly approved of Lehrer, and those songs were basically my husband’s nursery rhymes. I, of course, was singing a weird mix of Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, the Fifth Dimension, and Englebert Humperdinck (the crooner, not the Hansel and Gretel guy) at a similar age. Oh, and I can recall dancing around my grandmother’s living room singing along to “Delilah” by Tom Jones. I can’t imagine I understood it!

    @mudlark   Love the Animals. Here, for @peacefrog as well:

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    @nerys   Yes, I forgot to mention that I also liked the connection Ryan made with Miss Skeritt, their mutual experience of how meeting someone extraordinary can change your outlook forever.

    I don’t disagree with most of the criticisms that people have made. But while I watched the episode, they were nowhere in my view. They didn’t take me out of the experience in the same way as last week. And I found the performances in this one very enjoyable.

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    I agree @missrori that the ending was lovely. It reminds me that even now, with all the challenges facing the world, there are forward-thinking, inspired people with ideas that might just take us into a better future!

    Oh, and nice research @whisht on the Kraftwerk connection!

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    Goran Visnjic’s performance was inspired. Of course, it’s impossible not to take the side of the brilliant underdog, when he’s presented with such warmth and energy, and easy to see Edison as a stereotypical capitalist villain. But there was a nice moment when Edison made the absolutely valid point that for every idea, there needs to be someone who can make that idea a reality. We need both the Teslas and the Edisons, really. I was very moved by the idea that Tesla might have understood that his lack of success in the present might have been superseded by his importance to the future.

    While it’s possible to come up with an explanation for the different approaches to the mind wipe, I think that it’s problematic in a lot of ways and it would definitely have been better to find a way to avoid using it in the earlier episode. I also agree with @jimthefish that the villain was distractingly similar to the Racnoss. Although I suppose, as there are so many humanoid type aliens in the universe, there’s no reason there shouldn’t be a lot of arachnid ones as well!

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    Oh. My. God. So good. That was the best thing, I enjoyed every minute of it. It’s going to take me a while to come down off my high to think rationally about it. So good. I watched the whole thing with a big smile on my face and wept at the end. Loved it, loved it, loved it.

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    @peacefrog    I haven’t been able to keep up with your awesome posts. And now Cowboy Junkies! And the Doors. 🙂 Brilliant.

    I’ll leave something completely different, as I make ready to go out into the snow, with requisite grumbles about living in Vancouver where we’re not supposed to get this stuff. And yet, there’s about a foot of it outside my door, and more what they like to call “mixed precip” coming down as I write. *Huff!*

    But really, as I am about the age Ella was in this recording, and feel like I’m  watching my skill sets vanish before my eyes, how amazing is this performance? Cheers!

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    @missrori     I understand that your special circumstances present particular challenges. But I do relate to the statement “to keep the peace, I just don’t talk to her about much anymore“!

    I love my parents dearly, but they live in a part of Canada where the politics are so different from those of mine that I end up avoiding a lot of topics. It’s frustrating sometimes, particularly in regard to the climate, which is such a critical issue. Not that they are deniers, but they definitely don’t share my belief that we can and must wean ourselves from fossil fuels. My step dad, now retired, worked in the oil patch, and they have thoroughly partaken of the Alberta Kool-Aid in this regard. When my mom bemoans the increasingly challenging weather, floods, and forest fires that impact them, and refuses to connect the dots to pipelines and bitumen and so on, it’s maddening. I bite my tongue most of the time, because getting into this with an 80-year-old won’t serve any purpose. The 80-year-olds aren’t the ones we need to convince, anyway!

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    @missrori     Responding to you in the pub so as to avoid getting modded!

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    @juniperfish     I think we’ve gotten used to After Gap DW, in which the Doctor’s connection to his companions has been much deeper than in the past. So far, at least, Thirteen has a warm but less intense relationship with her “fam”. I was never altogether comfortable with the angsty aspect of the Doctor/Companion dynamic that took over the After Gap series, so this current version doesn’t bother me. Anyway, we’ve yet to see how it will all play out!

    @jimthefish     Fifth Doctor was gifted Companions that were always squabbling amongst themselves. It always felt like he had to parent them, and he often came across looking very weak as a result. The current group doesn’t have quite that problem. However, it’s true that we lose time with the Doctor due to the group. Much as I love all these companions, I’ve always felt that the Doctor benefits from cycling through a few. New relationships bring out new aspects of character.

    We’ll see how the new Gallifrey arc goes. Hopefully it’s not as much of a retread as it sounds at the moment.


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    Just leaving this here for @thane16  (aka Syzygy the Elder). I love this.

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    Welcome, @peacefrog! I too lurked a long time before joining in the fun.

    @thane16   Not sure if Midnight was a tranquility base, but it was certainly the same kind of place. Definitely a recall there, and that was one of my favourite Tennant episodes!

    @vervain   whether you stop being a fan of whichever team you follow if they lose a few games? Have a bad season? Temporarily have a crap coach?  This made me laugh. None of us would ever follow a team again if that were the case.

    @craig   That video is freakin’ awesome.

    @jimthefish   the Doctor returns to a planet where she’s previously instigated a revolt and deal with the messy aftermath that she usually conveniently disappears before having to deal with     Didn’t something like this happen to Nine?

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    Sigh. I hate that the minute any kind of social message is presented I catch myself anticipating the flood of negativity that is about to ensue. As others have said, ad nauseam, there has always been a place for these in DW. There has never been any “golden age” where this wasn’t true. And I so wish that people would remember that nothing — episode, series, regen, show as a whole — is “just patently bad”. It’s bad to you. This language is a real slap in the face to those with a different opinion.

    My problem with the episode was that it felt awfully kitchen-sinky. It didn’t feel very cohesive. Too many ideas thrown in and not enough attention paid to any of them. I felt that more could have been done with the parent/child theme, which I assume was the main theme of the episode. I would have better enjoyed the “planet of the apes” concept if it had been the main thrust of an episode of its own.

    There was a lot that could have been better enjoyed had there been more time. Ryan’s tentative approach to Bella could have had more space to breathe, as could Graham’s brief moment of fear for Ryan’s safety. Benni and Vilma’s fate was a straight recall of Ten’s Titanic Christmas episode (sorry, can’t recall the title), but could have elicited more emotion even so, had it not been one thing among so many others. (I did love Vilma’s delivery of her final line, “Which one of you hurt my Benni?”)

    It says a lot about the episode that my favourite moment was quite possibly the Doctor’s line about crayons and half a can of Spam. 🙂 Graham’s “Are you having a laugh, mate? I’m a bus driver!” was also pretty good.

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    RIP Neil Peart.   🙁

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    So nice to see all the speculation again! I don’t have any particular views about the Timeless Child, but I’m enjoying the return of the Master more than I would have expected. One of the things the post gap show has done nicely is the shift of the Master from a stereotypical evil nemesis to a villain of more nuance. We’ve been given believable background for how he became what he is, and enough hints about his past with the Doctor to create more of a love-hate relationship.

    It’s now possible to have the same debate about the Master’s fundamental nature as we have had had in the past about the Doctor. There’s a depth of anger that keeps him forever on a precipice. It’s easy to imagine him shifting toward the Doctor and away as external events push and pull at him. @winston, I don’t think that he would need the same degree of “reason” to destroy Gallifrey, due to his tremendously unstable personality. But I agree that you can never exclude the possibility that the Master is lying! I can’t help noting that, in their final appearances, both Simm and Gomez Masters actually ended up, in a sense, on the Doctor’s side.

    @vervain   That cabinet assembly line was a favourite of mine! 🙂

    @blenkinsopthebrave   I buy the iTunes series as well. Like you we don’t have cable, so it’s essential, but listening to comments of others about ad breaks, I feel I get the better bargain!

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    Well, this was fun. 🙂  I think Dhawan is doing a great job with the Master so far. I guessed nothing (although I did wonder why O seemed to smile so much!). I’d prefer the Master to be post-Missy, because I like forward motion and anything else would be a little too much like overwriting a lot of great character development. But we shall see. I also agree with @miapatrick that I don’t like the idea of a female Master being the only one capable of redemption.

    @badwolfalice  The pre-Gap Master often tried to kill the Doctor very blatantly indeed. But I like the suggestion that there is more behind the Master’s actions than what is obvious.

    @pedant  The Master stole a body in order to become the Anthony Ainley Master, but as I recall, that was because he had used up his regenerations. This would appear to be a different case, as he did it in order to infiltrate MI6.

    Now, we’re all excited about the master but we mustn’t forget Barton! Is he an alien disguised as human, or a converted human, or something different? And we still don’t know what the Master has to do with all that. (Or do we? There was a lot unfolding in the last few minutes!) Personally, I don’t think think the aliens are Cybermen, partly because of the comment about mocking humans, and partly because it seems a bit much bringing back the Master and the Cybermen in one episode! But I’ve been wrong before and will be again.

    @cathannabel  Regarding trolls, I check out the minute I see any reference to “SJW”. It’s a signpost to the kind of bias that I can’t be bothered engaging with.

    @twelveismydoctor  Interesting ideas about the Matrix!

    @winston  I also liked the Doctor’s bowtie. I’d love to see her in a dress at some point, but I suspect that isn’t this Doctor’s style!

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    Echoing @cathannabel‘s New Year wishes for everyone. I hope that more people can find common ground somewhere this year, and that 2020 will be the year that the world finally begins addressing climate change in a way that matters. Meanwhile, there is still beauty in the world, goodness, and the many small things that make life worthwhile. Let’s hang onto them with all the strength we have.

    So much love to you all,


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    @pedant   I love these, especially Gaudete, which is an Arbutus family favourite. Here’s another that comes up at our annual carol sing, carefully timed so that we haven’t had too much wine and cheese to get through it, but just enough to not feel self-conscious when we mess up the verses (we take turns soloing, and we never fail to mess them up, sometimes quite extensively!).

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    I love just about any version of A Christmas Carol. I used to read the original aloud to the rest of the Arbutuses every Christmas. This year, we watched The Bishop’s Wife with Cary Grant and David Niven, one of our family faves. But our absolute must-not-miss is actually audio. The much-lamented Canadian icon Stuart McLean’s Vinyl Cafe Christmas stories are essential every year. We never fail to listen to Dave Cooks The Turkey on Christmas Eve.

    @nerys, I’ll look for Cash on Demand, it sounds great.

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    I hope everyone has had/is having a great Christmas filled with what matters to each of you—family, friends, food, music, stories. @winston, I’m sorry for your difficult time. I hope the grandchildren filled your day with light!

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    Wow. Logging on to say it’s Christmas and I’ve been thinking about you all, and look, tubas! So great. And scrolling upward, Dixie Chicks. I’ll check in at the Kebab later, but wanted to leave this here. I hope I haven’t shared this before, but I may have. One of the great drops in Christmas music. 🙂


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    @janetteb    I’m not the most discerning of viewers. If something resonates with me emotionally, or makes me smile, then I’m usually happy. Although some series or episodes I have gone back to over and over, and others I haven’t. I’ll have to do a rewatch of the last series and see how it sits with me on a second go-around.

    @mudlark   I also remember the bat! 🙂

    @roger429  I saw the first three or four episodes of the AG series, but I had a small child at the time and TV was difficult on any kind of regular basis. I came in midway through the Matt Smith era, when  my son was older, and iTunes had become a thing so I could watch on my own time. I binged-watched through Eccleston and Tennant, as well as the Amy/Rory years of Matt Smith. But I had seen pretty much all of the BG shows in late-night TV reruns in the 80s.

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    @thane16   Well, I’m trying to be up and about! I seem to have some time-management problems nowadays. Love the librarians! I have a fondness for Les Miz, and thought the film was solid, although for me it can never compare to a stage version. Arbutus Jr. did “Stars” for a singing test in choir a few years ago—they had to sing along with a recording and try and match the performance. I think he chose the original London cast recording.

    I also have a fondness for librarians. Most years at Christmas, we watch It’s a Wonderful Life, and I laugh like a loon at the scene where Clarence is forced to divulge to a wild-eyed George that his alternate-universe wife is (the horror!) a spinster librarian! I’m pretty sure they never meant that to be as funny as it is. On the other hand, have you seen the Hepburn-Tracy movie Desk Set? She’s a librarian and he’s a guy with a computer. I adore that film.

    Siggers the Younger, nice pick. Despite having, as I said, bailed on the 90s, I did like REM.

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    @whisht  @thane16   Awesome Woodstock content! And the B52’s. I have weirdly fond memories of dancing to Rock Lobster in high school. For some reason, we all had to fall to the floor at one point, and then bounce back up again. I lived in Calgary, Alberta, for my last two years of high school and Calgary was pretty much a disco, rock-n-roll, or nothing town at that time. I think the B-52’s were the trendiest thing I heard until I moved back to Vancouver in 1980 (because they did get played in the discos). Then all of a sudden there was all this punk/new wave/Brit pop/R&B stuff happening that I had barely even heard of. This was great until about the mid-80’s when all the music on the radio started sounding the same to me, and then rap was a thing and the tunes all went away, and I just stopped listening to the radio at that point, and went back to school and studied classical for about eight years. I pretty much missed nineties. 🙂

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    @thane16   All and any errors are attributed to Syzygy the Younger always and forever. This is why we have children.   I wish I could get away with assigning all my mistakes to Arbutus Jr. This would never fly. I can’t even assign them to the cat and get away with it.  🙂


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    @roger429     Welcome to the DWF. Like you, I was never much for social media or participating on forums, until this one. (I was drawn to join shortly after the 50th anniversary special, so that I could comment on a fabulous essay by the erudite @bluesqueakpip. I have found that the level of discussion around here hugely exceeds the usual attitudes around the internet (which Mr. Arbutus and I refer to as the “Well, you’re an extra, extra a**hole” approach to debate—long story).

    DW fans often lean toward one side or the other of the history-vs.-scifi debate. Personally, I enjoy both approaches. I’m a historian by education, so I always enjoy a historical setting (even the ones that stray pretty far from legit history don’t bother me), but there’s a lot to be said for a good, alien-filled outer space setting as well! As you can say, I’m usually pretty easy to please (possibly due to being Canadian! 😀 ) But you’ll find here a nice spread of opinion as to superiority of Doctors, companions, show runners, themes, settings, and so on. There’s lots of (mostly courteous) disagreement!

    My first (and in many ways, still fave) Doctor was Doctor No. 4, Tom Baker. Like you, I have a fondness for the Douglas Adams era. But I have great memories of watching old Pertwee episodes with a room mate of mine and enjoying them hugely (I discovered Red Dwarf at that time, too). Of the new era Doctors, Capaldi is my favourite, but I’ve always found something to love in each regeneration.

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    Earlier this month, in honour of Stranger Things, the NYT put up a playlist of music from the 1985 American charts. I just happened on this list today. They wrapped it up with this. So good.

    (For the interested, you can find the whole playlist here.)

    Arbutus @replies

    @blenkinsopthebrave    That is absolutely surreal. Cab is what, a ghost walrus??? I love it. Interestingly, in the very cool opening, the band is actually playing St. James Infirmary, another one I love.

    @thane16     Wonderful Ellington, he was amazing. He was never behind the times, was he? Young Syzygy, I should be astonished at what you say about belief in a “fake moon landing”, but honestly, these days I don’t even shake my head anymore at the idiocy around us. I was just reading a local news story about a bike lane that has become the busiest in North America, and several people on comment boards simply dismissed it. “Those numbers can’t be right because they don’t seem right to me, clearly the city just made them up.” People will believe what they want to, but I’m not always sure why they want to!

    Hi ho, off to bed, but tomorrow will try to find musical illustration of stupid. 🙂

    Arbutus @replies

    @pedant    Gorgeous.

    Arbutus @replies

    @thane16     I don’t think I *do* know this, although it sounds very retro, like something 20-year-old me would have liked to if I’d heard it. (20-year-old me, now there’s something to try and wrap my head around!)

    Arbutus @replies

    Hola, @whisht!

    I saw this news as well, while I was off exploring the heartlands of Quebec. I love Desafinado, and that is such a lovely, silky performance. There’s a recording from quite a bit later, mid seventies, that includes this svelte number:

    Arbutus @replies

    @thane16    Oh it’s you! 🙂 I read the notification and wondered who the heck is this Syzygy person?

    I’ve been thinking of this lovely eclectic bunch of humans recently and been meaning to jump back into the pool, but I’m so easily distracted these days. I even made the Duolingo Owl cry. (I’ll be getting back at that Spanish shortly, I promise!) Lots of great posts on here as always, although too many inspired by sad events. I saw a wonderful video clip of the parade for Dr. John in N.O. Mr. Arbutus was absolutely delighted to see so many in-tune trombones in one place.  🙂

    I can see I have a lot of reading to do on other threads, and I will do it. Meanwhile, hope everyone and everything is flowing along as usual.   *heart*

    Arbutus @replies

    Brief appearance to wish everyone a very happy New Year! Hoping for better things in 2019 (not for me personally, I’m good, more for the world generally). I’ll be back tomorrow after I’ve seen the New Year special. Meanwhile, love to you all!

    Arbutus @replies

    I’ve just spent a chunk of time catching up on a couple of weeks of sofa chat that I’m really sorry to have missed. Especially the garden talk. Nothing like a good convo about things like lavender, frogs, and climate. As @winston knows, there’s nothing a Canadian likes more than a nice bitch about how hard it is to garden in zone whatever. Too hot, too cold, too wet, too dry, too windy. These are the things over which we bond.  🙂

    However, comment of the month (to date) has to go to @pedant‘s succinct description of Elon Musk: He does some very cool stuff, but fuck me he’s a dickhead.

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