Frank Denton - The Rogue Raven

Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

What you have here is an old guy. In education for 30 years, started teaching elementary, ended as library and media director of community college. I've enjoyed mountain climbing, sports car rallying, was pipe major of a bagpipe band, played guitar and sang during the folk revival, walking and hiking later in life. Now fairly sedentary. Enjoy reading, esp. mysteries and fantasy, but my reading is pretty eclectic. Enjoy movies, giving Netflix a workout.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Murderous Liqueurs

I was watching a Food Network program the other day while making a list of things to do. The program was Everyday Italian with my favorite Italian beauty, Giada De Laurentiis. She was making a trifle which used Creme de Cassis as an ingredient. Since I did not know what that was, beyond being a liqueur, I thought I’d look it up. It turns out to be a liqueur made from black currants. The website that I used to learn about this followed with a list of popular drinks in which Creme de Cassis was an ingredient. As a longtime mystery fan I was immediately struck by a drink called Baltic Murder Mystery. Creme de Cassis, vodka and 7 Up.

I followed up by searching for other drinks with Murder in the title. A Crow Left of the Murder and A Murder of Crows, both made with Old Crow bourbon. Others were Black Murder, Bloody Murder, Caribbean Murder, Island Murder and Murder in the Forest. This last was made with something called Pisang Ambon, a liqueur I’ve never heard of, pina colada mix, vodka, orange juice and grenadine. Sounds far too sweet for me.

I tried searching other criminal terms but the only thing I turned up was a drink called Killing Light. As opposed to Killing Dark? Or light as in not heavy handed? Anyway, ‘twas a fun detour into the worlds of liqueurs and the drinks made with them.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Weather

I'm just ducking in for a moment to apologize for not blogging much of late. It's been too darn hot here in the northwest. I know, I know. There are a lot of places hotter but we are spoiled. Low 70s are comfortable here in Puget Sound country. 75 degrees and we start to whine. We've had five days in the mid-90s and we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it any more. Well, it was a good line in the movie anyway. I really feel for those people in other parts of the country who suffer from higher temps all summer every summer. And 115 degrees really has hit people in the southwest and California. But I'm just too hot and sweaty to even think straight. It's supposed to cool down by the weekend, maybe even rain. Surprise! In Seattle? So check back, please do.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Weekend at the Cabin

Just checking in to let you know I'm still alive. It's been very busy around here lately. Immediately after the Fourth of July, a group of fellows convened at our cabin near Mt. Rainier. We call it Tankon and it's been happening since 1970. At first it was only after Christmas but now we also meet in the summer. It started among a group of science fiction friends but has gone on beyond that. So I was gone for six days. No sooner got home than my wife and I went back up to the cabin. She's on the board of the owner's association in the small development where our cabin is. Life repeats itself. I was on the board for several years when the association first began, forty-four years ago. I was secretary for three or four years.

Anna and I watched a few movies in the three days we were there. I took great delight in watching And Then There Were None, the 1945 movie from Agatha Christie's novel, Ten Little Indians. An all-star cast led by Barry Fitzgerald. I first saw this when I was in high school but didn't get to see the ending. I went to a boarding school. We were allowed to go to town on Saturday afternoons, providing our behavior during the week had been good. We had to be back in time for dinner. A train ran near the school and we had to catch that train. I think we were down to the last three people in the film still living when we had to leave the theater and run for the train. It was many years before I actually saw the ending of the movie. Now my good friend, Dale, has given me a copy. Should I forget whodunit and how it ends, I can slip it in the player and see it again.