Tuesday, October 18, 2005

My fingertips are burning. A few hours ago I was cooking with Morita peppers, which are simply roasted red jalapenos that you buy in a little celophane bag. They add a powerful, smoky aroma to stews. Lately I've been on a guisada kick but this might be my cue to try something else. Pain! I did the dishes, thinking it would wash off the hot but it simply aggravated it.

Watched a very strange movie tonight on TCM, The Devil-Doll starring Lionel Barrymore. His character, Paul Lavond, is a fugitive who teams up with the widow of a mad scientist in order to make miniature dolls out of his enemies. For most of the movie he hobbles around in a dress, in disguise as an old woman, talking in an absurd falsetto. When his last standing enemy confesses to the police and exonerates him, the lab and the widow conveniently explode, freeing him to make amends with his long lost daughter. In the most powerful scene in the movie he sees his daughter out of costume but chooses to lie to her that her father is actually dead. The practical reason he does this is unclear to me, but from an emotional level, you sense that he has done SO much weird shit that he can't possibly explain himself to the people he loves. message: We can become such weird creatures that it becomes impossible to explain ourselves, or to love. Yet the movie ends with him saying "this is the best day of my life." Such a movie would never be made today. Yet it expresses something real.