Friday Four

Friday, June 05, 2015

1. Last Sunday, I enjoyed seeing Arsenal dismantle Aston Villa 4-0 to win the English FA Cup for the second year running. The result means that Arsenal is the most successful club in the world's oldest soccer tournament, with twelve wins. In addition, Manager Arsene Wenger is himself now tied for first among managers with six wins.

2. Given that I first quaffed Ayinger Celebrator in my Houston days, and perhaps even before I started blogging, this beer recommendation might seem ... belated. Beer Advocate rates it world-class, but I like the commercial description supplied at RateBeer:
Celebrator has a creamy head of tight bubbles contrasting beautifully with its profound dark robe. It is full-bodied and velvety from half a year's aging. Although it is strong, it is not overpowering. There is a wonderful and complex balance between the various malts, the alcohol and the subtle hops. A complex fruitiness of roasted malt and whole hop flowers make Celebrator great as a party drink with friends and family at celebrations. Despite its richness, it has a faintly smoky dryness in the finish.
Chalk up the delay in part to my not having had it in so long: When I spotted it at my local beer emporium, I purchased a bottle out of nostalgia. I was floored by how good it really is, and glad that pleasant memories from an earlier time prodded me to become reacquainted with something my then-less-educated palate didn't fully appreciate at the time.

3. A cute commercial by Nationwide, featuring a huge baby made an appearance at the end of a cartoon show my daughter likes. Being a parent of a two- and a four-year-old is a recipe for distraction, so I wasn't clear at the time that the baby was supposed to be a car, but I thought I did okay explaining why there was a baby when Pumpkin asked.
It's a joke, sweetie. Babies don't really know what they're doing, so a parent has to work hard to make sure they don't hurt themselves or other people, or break anything. It's an ad for insurance. If an accident happens, it can cost lots of money to fix, but of you pay for insurance, they can pay for you if that happens.
I was less impressed with my off-the-cuff explanation of insurance than the fact I was having such a conversation with someone who didn't even exist four years ago.

4. I enjoyed seeing San Andreas with Mrs. Van Horn on a date night last week. The movie was good for what it was, and I found that Scott Holleran's review left me with a realistic level of expectation:
The uncomplicated San Andreas from Warner Bros.' New Line Cinema is not really about the big one, the fault line, the seismology or the typical disaster movie themes of enlightenment through trauma, trial and error. It's about rescuing one's values at the end of the world.
As a couple, we are the opposite of stereotype in that she likes the action movies and, if either of us could be described as "artsy-fartsy", I would be the one. For movies, if I don't have a clear first choice, I do what I did when we picked out wedding gifts: I ask her to winnow the field down to a few acceptable candidates, then I pick from among those. With movies, I usually draw on the opinions of a small group of reviewers and friends whose opinions I respect to make my final selection.

-- CAV

No comments: