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Thursday, September 02, 2010

Thanks, Internet

D. had to go to the ATL for a book event tonight, so it's just us girls tonight (and our guard dog, Cooper). We had a nice meal inspired by this post and recipe for aloo simla mirch (potato and sweet pepper curry) on one of my new favorite blogs, The Perfect Pastry. "Supper was better than I thought it would be," proclaimed the four-year-old, but I knew it would be good even with my (minor) changes: I just put one slit serrano in and kept it aside for my own plate, I grated in half a tomato I had sitting around, and instead of making fresh all-out curry powder I used a little of the stuff from Taj Mahal and then coarsely ground some cumin and coriander seeds. Served with some leftover spiced brown basmati with some peas. Oh, it was wonderful. Thank you, Margie.

After supper, I turned on a movie, thinking maybe T. would kind of fall asleep on her own, saving me the whole drawn-out bedtime routine—we were both so tired this afternoon—and I could get some work done. Not a chance. We sat on the couch, huddled together, gripping our girlie nightgowns, totally engrossed in the extremely manipulative and simplistic but highly effective Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron, which I'd seen on a list of a few recent non-snarky movies for youngsters blogged on Sweet Juniper!. (Thank you—really—Sweet Juniper! writer.)

For my part, once I managed to separate the Spirit Matt Damon voice-over from the ADM Informant! Matt Damon voice-over recently experienced, I was fine. T.'s reaction was a little more complex: She was sobbing through most of it—with sadness as well as happiness—but she would not let me turn it off no matter what happened. Or even turn down the volume so the sappy (but again, highly effective) Bryan Adams–Hans Zimmer score wouldn't get to her so much. This movie was intense for a kid, veering from euphoric relief to wrenching heartbreak every ten or fifteen seconds. Seeing T. parsing all that was almost too much for me. She enjoys the long form—Ponyo, which I find incredibly slow for an animated feature, has been a favorite of hers for a couple months—but I've never seen her so thrilled about a movie. She couldn't stop talking about it afterward. We watched all the DVD extras, and I learned how to sort of draw Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron, and she colored him red and green, and then she ran and got lots more paper and announced that she was going to make a movie about the horse. "But it's going to be different. It will be shorter. And no people will try to ride him, because wild horses aren't supposed to be rided. And the good guy will use a rope to get apples from a tree for all the horses." (And there was something about a strip'ed pebble.) She added, "I think you're going to like this movie. Half of it will be scary, and half of it will be good." Which sounds perfect to me.

Note the tissue handy. (And that's my wine, not hers.)