Spies Like Us

So we’re watching “Chuck” and this week’s episode (yes, I know it airs Monday and today is Wednesday–there’s just too much TV on Monday, so thank goodness for complete episodes on the web) features a character named Sasha Banacheck. And what character did Linda Fiorentino play in the 1985 movie Gotcha!?

That’s right. Sasha Banicek.

But does anyone really provide Gotcha! shout-outs? I mean, who other than me would get them?

Ping Pong

There has been a lot of back-and-forth. A lot of back-and-forth.

First there were the multiple offers we had to submit, first in increasing amounts and then, weirdly, in decreasing amounts. (Then they increased again.)

Next, we identified a closing date. Then the seller’s lender specified a different closing date. Then we moved the date up. Then we moved it back. Then it turned out that the seller’s other lender had specified an earlier date. Then the two lenders agreed on a different date. Then we chose a date, and then the current occupant couldn’t move out in time. Then he could.

So you can imagine our surprise when, after signing loan papers and FedExing a very large cashier’s check to our escrow agent, the seller’s lender(s?) announced that there would be no close of escrow until the tenant had moved out.

Why do they care whether the tenant moves out, you ask? Good question. And it turns out that they don’t. They cared that the cashier’s check hadn’t arrived. Except that it had. So we have no idea why they chose to express concern about the check as concern about the tenant’s move-out date.

But in the end, we’re closing on Friday. I hope it sticks.

24-hour Typo Network

What is going on at CNN Headline News? And when did they fire all of their copyeditors?

A couple of months ago, Mr. Sandwich and I noticed that one of the on-screen labels misspelled “Kazakhstan.” Then, a day or two later, they misspelled “Christiane Amanpour.”

No big deal. She’s only one of their star journalists. She’s only worked there for years.

And this isn’t in the crawl, which at least (ostensibly) might be something that gets thrown together on the fly. (Although clearly it isn’t limited to breaking news, so I’m cutting them quite a bit of slack here.)

No, this is in labels. The captions that just sit there at the beginning of a story. The ones that, say, identify the star journalist reporting the story.

At this point, I thought about starting a blog dedicated to pointing out typos on CNN Headline News. Then I realized that I would have to watch a lot more CNN, and I’m just not willing to do that.

But I figured I’d at least write a post about this shoddy presentation. Because what did I see this morning? The word “follwoing.”

Short Sale Revisited, Plus Alligator

That was then, this is now. Tonight we went to meet with our real estate agent and sign still more papers. In the process, we clarified our closing date. Escrow will close on October 6. Huzzah!

To celebrate (and to let the traffic die down a bit), we went out to dinner. On our trip to the office, eastward along Ventura Boulevard, we had identified a number of possibilities. However, we agreed that there was one leading contender: Brats Brothers.

The restaurant–a railroad-car of a place, only 10 feet wide–offers a wealth of brat options. They have everything from Bavarian (smoked pork and beer) and Swiss (mild veal and parsley) to Peking Brat (duck and fig) and Wild West (buffalo and burgundy).

I had a German (veal, pork, onions, parsley) with sides of Grandma’s Sauerkraut and grilled onions. Mr. Sandwich had a Black Forest (mild smoked pork) with roasted herb potatoes and chili. Both were excellent, and all of the sides were delicious.

Then we went really crazy and ordered the Swamp Thing. It’s sausage made from smoked alligator.

That’s right. Alligator.

I know what I’m supposed to say here. “Tastes like chicken!” But it doesn’t. It tastes like pork.

Also it was a little too spicy for me. So next time–and there will be a next time–I’ll stick to something more like the Swiss. Or the Peking Brat.

Eat hearty!

The Plumbing Circle of Life

I don’t know what part of the continuum we’re on at this moment, but it isn’t a good one. Right now, as I type, the plumber is snaking the drain because the water is backing up into the tub and the toilet. Yes, again. At 10 p.m.

Here’s a video of the tub:

And here’s where the water pours out of the drain pipe, when in fact it should be draining out the other direction. You know. DOWNHILL.

We are so moving.