Hi, there, Dear Reader. It is late morning on Thursday, May 5, 2022. It is a warm spring day in the Tampa Bay area, but it is going to be hotter. Currently, the temperature is 87°F (30°C) under sunny skies. With humidity at 63% and the wind blowing from the southwest at 2 MPH (6 KM/H), the heat index is 93°F (33°C) Today’s forecast calls for mostly sunny skies and a high of 96°F (35°C). Tonight, skies will be partly cloudy, and the low will be 70°F (21°C).
The stormy weather we anticipated yesterday never arrived. The skies overhead were cloudy at times, but the thunderstorms in yesterday’s forecast did not materialize. Maybe the wind shifted direction and the conditions necessary for cumulonimbus clouds to form just weren’t there. I thus stayed online till around 8 PM or so, even though I did not do anything important – just puttered around on social media and participated in a few Reddit threads.
I also didn’t watch any of my Star Wars movies on May the 4th Be with You Day. Partly because I was still worried about errant thunderstorms popping up in the afternoon – though a cursory look at my Weather app could have easily dispelled that concern. Mostly, though, my heart wasn’t in it. I enjoy watching movies – from any genre – with other people, and while I can (and often must) watch them in solitude, I don’t have as good a time as when I watch stuff – whether it’s The Maltese Falcon, Casablanca, The Best Years of Our Lives, The Pink Panther, or Star Wars – all by myself.
Instead, Dear Reader, I ended up watching “Roots of a War (1945–1953)” – the first part of the re-edited version of 1983’s Vietnam: A Television History, the first of three documentaries about that sad episode in American history that I have in my home media library. It was a most unsatisfactory viewing experience; I watched it out in the Common Room because “my” spot on the couch is comfortable, but because the Caregiver and her boyfriend had retired for the night, I had to watch the TV with the volume turned down.
Normally, this is not an issue since most of the content I own either on DVD or Blu-ray has subtitles in the Language options on their opening menus. Alas, Vietnam: A Television History only supports closed captions, which are unavailable when you use Blu-ray players with HDMI or 4K UHD HDMI cables.
I’m hard of hearing, so even though I could see the images and hear some of the spoken words in the audio track, I couldn’t grasp much of what the narrator, interviewees, or folks in the archival footage were saying. I could hear the sound effects in the clips of combat footage, but that was about it.
The only benefit I got from attempting to watch Vietnam: A Television History was that it made me drowsy and that I slept till just past 7 in the morning with only one brief interruption to go use the facilities at 5 AM.
If we don’t get any surprise thunderstorms – it’s hot and humid outside, so even if the forecast rules out the formation of storms, experience tells me that forecasts can be wildly wrong at times – I might try rewatching “Roots of a War (1945–1953)” in my room. My futon is not as comfy as the reclining couch out in the Common Room, but at least I can turn my TV’s volume up enough so I can hear what I’m watching!
Well, Dear Reader, that’s all the scuttlebutt I have for you today. Until next time, stay safe, stay healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.