Tag Archives: Richard Armitage

Armitage and the Beach

During last night’s insomnia session, I was looking over the posts of others  – such good reading to be had among this group! – and my own most recent ones. My, my, Cat, I said to myself, you are getting much too serious here.  Come on and loosen up, kiddo.  So by daybreak, I had fleshed out some notes, and here it is.

One of the first commenters on my blog, DaisyGirl, made a brilliant suggestion in discussing our affection for both the coast and RA: “Hmm, perhaps Richard Armitage on a beach? Yes, please!” I responded that it appeared to me that RA was more of a mountain guy since he was such a snow skiing aficionado, but we could always hope.  I figured we would be a force of two promoting the whole idea of Armitage photographed as a beach guy.

But, lo and behold, in a recent “ooof!” post, Guylty commented, “Well, maybe we need to petition someone to get Armitage to pose on the beach.” I realize this is taken out of context since, as I understand it, it was referring to a beach photo shoot for an unrelated purpose, the making of “costume change” photo shoots to accompany the “primary” shoot. However, we’ll take what we can get, since Guylty is the resident photographic expert, in my opinion, of Armitageworld. I thought it might add credibility to our cause.

Based on my limited research, this is the extent of Armitage on the  beach:

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Ricky Deeming, in George Gently. We assume RA is the tall one in the middle? Great beach sunset shot; not exactly what we had in mind though . Source: RichardArmitageNet.com

Ricky Deeming, George Gently. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com

Ricky Deeming, in George Gently. This documents that RA really was at the beach, but again, just misses the mark. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com

Another less satisfactory solution was to find pics that could, with some imagination, at least be representative of a coastal photo location or the coastal way of life. I absolutely was NOT going to use Speedo pics! Photoshop was out of the question. However, I have on a couple of occasions, used this as a symbolic Armitage-at-the-beach shot,  the white t-shirt being more appropriate beach gear, and the bright blue weathered wall definitely putting out a coastal vibe. (Where I come from a more complete beach look would replace the jeans with faded cut-offs and add a pair of flipflops. And maybe muss the hair a little.)  But still, not a legitimate coastal pic, is it?

The Pretend-We’re-on-the-Coast shot. Robert Ascroft, photographer. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com

Does this seem such an unreasonable request? Given the positive response from RA fans to other coastal posts, it seems like this could garner more widespread support. Maybe a photo shoot on a New Zealand beach as a break from filming? I would think Mr. Armitage would appreciate a breather, literally, from the prosthetics and costume, although it might be hard to stay in character as Thorin wearing boardshorts and a tank. I know it’s not summer there now – a detail.

I thought DaisyGirl had a great idea. Just sayin’….

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

I supposedly have no time to do this, but I had to make time. I need to say it.

Last night was (another) difficult night, with pain not in the excruciating category, but enough to keep me awake. I  got up this morning, late, with a heavy sense of sadness and loss. I felt that I had dreamed it, but, as usual, didn’t remember the dream. What was this about? Ostensibly, it could have been due to the fact that I (finally) started reading Alyssa’s incredible piece on Lucas North last night. (Alyssa, a more thorough comment is forthcoming.) She led me into revisiting the Lucas to John Bateman revelation.  When I  watched Season 9, I went into a real downer mode and haven’t watched any of that season since.

(Major detour:   I had something of a personal epiphany during/after reading “I Believe in Lucas North,” relating to this blog, being a part of Armitageworld, and the role Mr. A himself plays in it. Another post will have to get into all that – tentative working title: “I’m Going on an Adventure” or What Has This Man Done to Us?)

Another, scarier, explanation of my melancholy would be an intuitive feeling of some impending event, which I have had occasionally in the past. The other possibility is some deep place where my mind has led me in which I subconsciously feel a strong  sense of disappointment with something/someone. Who? Someone in my family? The whole RA experience? Myself?

An aching body, weary mind, and many, many things to do before leaving for our daughter’s graduation….. But I decide to look quickly at l’Esprit while eating. And there, written I’m sure as light-hearted responses to a reblog of coastal cottage decorating, were several cheery messages from Armitagers. (I will, hopefully, respond to each of your comments before the day is out.)  Nothing deep and probing, not written with an eye toward consolation, just short expressions of acknowledgement, appreciation of the content. Several other quick, friendly responses were there as well.

Then there was a post, this from another cancer patient whose blog I follow.  Please see my reblog of “A Poem Again?” How had she known? This was me. Right now, just the pain part applies, but what a wonderful turn at the end. How could she have known?

I vacillate between acceptance of hard, coincidence-ridden reality and the notion that there is no such thing as coincidence. But this today…… How could it be that such simple actions by those in my circle of acquaintance can, unintentionally, but most certainly to powerful effect, become random acts of kindness?

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

And now, I should put in a sweet, smiling pic of RA, but I’m way too tired. So just imagine it. I’m sure you can. I’m picturing Harry.  🙂

Bad News, Good News, But It’s OK, I think – And Other Miscellaneous Thoughts

Can I go here?  Right Now?

                                                South Padre Island – Can I go here? Right Now?

Bad News: My chemotherapy was postponed this week. That means that this round I only got 4 instead of 6 treatments. Is that enough to find out if this concoction will work? Oncologist (onc) says yes. I hope he’s right. It also means that I’ll be going a full month with no treatment at all. Possibly have one round the first week of June, but it’s iffy. Again, the onc says it’s not a make it or break it deal. He said my CEA (tumor marker test) has been all over the place, bouncing up and down for the past 5 months, so it’s not telling us anything.  Hope he’s right there too. And that the M.D. Anderson doc that I see in early June, agrees. The proof will be in the scans that MDA does, of course.

Good News: My chemotherapy was postponed this week. There was no question. Onc says he simply will not subject me to more drugs when I haven’t fully recovered from the last round. This after looking in my mouth and apparently seeing an very unpleasant sight. Even made my husband look too. Onc is very big on quality of life and not compromising my health any further. You probably have heard of people having serious, even life-threatening, side effects from the chemo. My doc is trying to control the disease as much as possible, but still allow me to enjoy life.  This is different than the “curative” approach, when they figure you won’t mind being totally miserable for a while if it means you can get rid of the monster for good.

So this means that I get a break. Good for two reasons: Next weekend our daughter graduates from Savannah College of Art and Design. The whole family plans to be there, and I’ll be able to enjoy the event, with the main chemo holdover probably being fatigue. Second, it is nice to be able to eat, maybe sleep, and generally (kind of) forget about cancer for a while. Except for the bone pain, which is more or less controllable with opioids.

Miscellaneous thoughts for today:

  • I had to send a “sign off” email to the final client of our consulting business, telling them we would no longer be in business. After 20+ years of this, it’s hard for me to give up such a large part of my identity. In the last 5 years or so I did much of the work myself – conducting meetings (most requiring 4-5 hours of nighttime driving), talking with small town elected officials, grant applications and administration, planning, and writing, writing, writing. But it is definitely time to move on – just give me a minute to grieve………………
  • Kind of chuckling at myself: I’ve taken on the task of designing the graduation card for our daughter. Me, artistically and graphically challenged, coming up with something for our oldest who is getting her second art degree, this one in illustration. Of course, she won’t care because it will be Mom who made it specially for her.
  • Actually managed to eat something with vinegar (tuna nicoise) last night without cringing. Pain is minimal. Progress! Although lunch today demonstrated that I’m not ready for Mexican food, yet.
  • Dark and “raining like a big dog” here, as my older brother would say.  Hence, my wish to be teleported to the location above.  And while we’re at it, can this guy just happen to be on the same beach? Thanks! 🙂
ep8-4

I know this leather is too hot for the beach, but after all, it is Guyday! And I didn’t want to seem like I was inserting gratuitous shirtlessness by using you-know-which photos! Source: RichardArmitageNet.com; my edit.

  • One update not in the original post. Duh, how could I forget this?! Our youngest recently won a drawing at his college campus and made quite a haul: 47″ TV, blu-ray/3D player-sound system, XBox, games. He got to pick 4 movies, and so, sweet boy that he is, he got LOTR extended editions and The Hobbit, which I think is 3-D. I was holding out for the Hobbit EE, but, hey, I’ll settle for this. Happy Day!
  • Finally, in the “This is What I’m Talking About” department: while looking for inspiration for the grad card, I meandered through the daughter’s online portfolio/notes and found the following. Not only is it food for thought as we buzz about this Friday afternoon, but it makes me incredibly proud to be able to claim this amazing young woman.  I hope some day to tell you her name and show you how beautiful she is on the outside as well as the inside. Definitely a “purr” moment! 🙂 🙂

Runner

 

I will move over for you runner

Coming up behind me

And I would like to congratulate

You, for you’ll make better time

Than I.

 

But I bet you didn’t notice how

Clear the river is today

The way the triangular

Shapes between the branches

Of the trees morph into

New shapes as you move,

Or the great blue heron

Perfectly framed between two

Drooping branches marked

On either side by dried grasses

Caught in the limbs from the flood.

 

And I bet the heron didn’t turn

To look at you. But did you at least notice

The lady in the red top and

Black pants with big

Sunglasses and her hair pulled

Back, staring at the scenery until

She turned to give you a nod and

A faint smile?

 

Ah well, then that’s something.

Sometimes You Just Get So Low

WARNING: Downer cancer discussion to follow.  Will totally understand if you’re looking for more positive way to spend your leisure time. If you are unable to make a quick trip to a beach (I can’t either), here are some suggestions:  1. Listen to reggae – I use Spotify a lot for impromptu music listening. 2. Go get a frozen yogurt – you know – CherryBerry, Yogo Bowl, whatever your local place is called. 3. Check out the latest RA discovery from Mr. Ascroft:

RobertAscroft-21

Photograph by Robert Ascroft. From richardarmitagenet.com, 2012 Promo Gallery.

Whew, that helps.

For me, cancer is such a roller coaster. The goal is to rise above what’s happening to you physically, see yourself as a spectator in the everyday events of your life. Cancer may kill you, so do all these things to make the most out of your life now. But sometime I get so tired of hearing how I should think, what I should eat, do these exercises everyday, just have this kind of attitude. Be happy, you have an incurable disease.

Reasons for the downer attitude: I’m near the end of the two-week chemo cycle. Usually I feel really good by now, the side effects having subsided during the middle of the cycle. But this time was unusually rough, with mouth sore issues to the point where I was unable to eat solid food for a week. I guess it was nice to lose a little weight, but I don’t recommend that particular diet plan. The hip/back pain I deal with, due to a combination of the cancer and a chronic condition I’ve had for years, had been substantially better for the past two weeks. It returned two days ago, at the same intensity as before. That plus fatigue and “digestive issues” due to weird diet and/or chemo, has left me feeling very frustrated.

Here’s why: Because of the extreme side effects this time, I’m afraid my oncologist will want me to hold off on another chemo treatment until my next trip in early June to M.D. Anderson for scans and “re-staging.” That is, they see if/how much the cancer has “progressed” (That’s a misnomer if I’ve ever heard one.) and decide on what treatment to do next. First, that means going about 5 or 6 weeks with no treatment.  Second, I’m reaching the end of the officially accepted treatments for colon cancer. There may be one other chemo drug to try, but then the next step  is to get into a clinical trial, which seems like the last ditch effort to control the disease before they give up on you entirely. At least that’s what it feels like. And it’s scary. For all the talk about reaching the spiritual plane where you find peace and acceptance, when it starts to become real, it’s just damn scary.

Slowly this disease and its treatment seem to be sapping my strength, my resolve to keep fighting, and the “wow, you’ve got a great attitude, you should blog about this” attitude. My body doesn’t seem to bounce back as fast from chemo, the cancer has continued to gradually grow. I just get tired of it all.

You see there are problems we (meaning husband and I) try not to over-stress about because they’re “fixable.” Relationship issues, financial woes, career choices, children’s’ issues, and so on – these will have a end to them. Somehow they will resolve themselves. Cancer – at the stage where I am – is probably not fixable, unless some new medical discovery or a miracle comes to the rescue. Everyone, please understand I’m not trying to downgrade anyone else’s major life issues. Your life causes pain, frustration, and anxiety that you must deal with.  It is not small stuff. Things seem insurmountable and unresolvable. I’ve been there, too. But I need to rant; please indulge me.

Sorry for all the rambling. I just needed to do this – to “grouse” a bit. Do you think going into the back yard and screaming will help? What’s that? More Armitage, you say? Maybe something beachy, summery? And remember the mantra – live in the moment? Ok, I’ll try.

RobertAscroft-20

Photograph by Robert Ascroft. From richardarmitagenet.com, 2012 Promo Gallery.

Handling Armitage Withdrawal, Y’all

About all these coastal posts: I love the coast and must be thinking of it more because “endless summer” is almost upon us.  But I have been sadly lacking in Richard Armitage postings, so here’s my favorite of the latest RA promo photographs from Sydney:

AprilSydney2

2013 Promo Pic, mXnewspaper.  Source: richardarmitagenet.com

I realize this particular shot wasn’t the favorite of some – our tastes vary – but when that set of photos was posted, this one immediately attracted my eye.  Maybe just because the brown leather was a change from the usual black, maybe because of the contrast it provided – at least more than black does – with Mr. Armitage’s hair (Forgive the interruption, but let me make it clear that Richard Armitage and black go together like, well, boots and leather. I certainly don’t mean to disparage The Black. May that never change.), maybe it was something about the casual pose against a stone wall. Of course, a LOT of the attraction was his facial expression, as it often is.

In another discussion about this photo, I believe someone mentioned cowboys of South Texas wearing similar brown leather jackets. A comparison I hadn’t considered, but the more I thought about it…. hmmm, interesting.

I know this is asking RA fans to leap across a huge cultural chasm here, but this is just food for wistful thinking (and purring). I grew up surrounded by the cowboy culture. I was not a part of it and was more likely to be found in either the hippie or the nerd crowd.  But this has always appealed to me:  a tall, lean, handsome, long-legged cowboy, in the aforementioned brown leather jacket, good-fitting jeans (!), and cowboy boots.  Hat is optional, because I couldn’t decide between black felt and natural straw, although I lean toward the black. Got the sweet horseback riding skills already. And I think stubble works better than clean-shaven or beard here. On second thought, the beard will work too.  Just something to ponder.

Low and Slow This Week

So, with all sorts of grandiose plans to finish out the page for spirituality, learn how to use photos without violating copyright or being placed in cyberspace stocks, and otherwise spread comments around some of the incredible blogs I’m following, I’ve done none of that.  Blame it on the “C” word, or rather the treatment for it. Not going into it here, but suffice it to say chemo sucks.

Only consolation (other than a caring family) is some beautiful RA pics/edits that have come out recently. Unfortunately it hurts to smile, but that doesn’t stop me from looking!