Charlie update: Charlie has settled in and now owns us completely—lock, stock, and barrel, and anything else he cares to take over. We’ve never known anyone more personable than Charlie, completely self-assured at such a young age, completely trusting and loving of and by his new parents, charming enough to win over anyone’s heart. Our sister-in-law Doris and her granddaughter Claire visited us a few days ago. Doris admittedly is not a cat person. Anyone who knows cats knows that cats can spot people who are uncomfortable around them, spot it in their eyes, and will then invariably choose that lap to leap upon. And Charlie did just that to Doris, on the lap, then stretching out in contented sleep. About an hour later, Doris was still stroking the back and legs, completely charmed out of her socks by this little charmer.
I've noticed an irritating tv commerical lately (not that "irritating" doesn't describe nearly every tv ad). Presto Auto Loans comes on smilingly to tell us that a $2000 loan from Presto after 14 months of $200 payments would be paid off. But anyone who took out a competitor's loan, same length of time but $300 a month, would still owe $2000 after fourteen months. Just how stupid do the Presto people think we are? Their loan would be for about 25% interest, a little more than even the highest credit card rate. In any state that rate would be considered usurious. Then there's the loanshark competitor. Their interest rate apparently would be about 210%, reminiscent of the mob and its money lenders, with a vig practically no one could come up with, making for a bunch of broken legs and arms and heads. How, then, can Presto continue their ad campaign? Isn't anyone in law enforcement watching the cookie jar?
I saw Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy yesterday and came away completely confused. I guess I'd consider it a good movie. But I'm not sure. Like a lot of other viewers who might not want to admit their confusion, I feel that I should call it good and then shut up. It seemed to be a series of unrelated images, interesting images, but without any apparent connection. And then there were the typical English offices and apartments, barely half-lit, as though no one in England can afford an electric bill. And the flashbacks and scene repeats, never explained or connected. The plot was fairly simple: There was a mole in the British secret service, someone high up, someone who needed to be uncovered. That's what happened . . . I guess. If anyone out there goes to see Tinker and understands it better than I, please explain it to me.