The Daily Bongo

June 2015

Sunday, June 28, 2015 -- Evening

Liz and Austin talking
Big Brother Nominations Show
The house is going crazy, with Audrey the cause behind all the craziness. She is really playing the game hard, and she's always confronting one of the house guests about something they might have said about her. Personally, I think instead of going for Jace as the replacement nomination, James would be better off getting Audrey out of the house. However, if Audrey doesn't take a chill pill, I'm sure she will be out soon. In the POV ceremony today, Steve use the POV, and Jace went up in his place.

So on to tonight's episode of Big Brother. The show started with the new twist, and Vanessa and Da'vonne thinking something good was coming from opting out of the competitions. Then we saw the bonding between Jace and Austin. Jace just went on and on with Bro Codes. Time for the HOH room reveal, which was very stylish. James wanted to establish a foundation with Jason, his fellow HOH. Jace wants to take over the bathtub to make the honeys his. Jason and James talk about who they will nominate. Jason instantly picked on Steve and John. James said that Jace is a beast in competitions. Jason said that he wants to target the big guys.

Jackie and Jeff talk, and Jackie doesn't know anyone's names. Jeff says that his relationship with Jackie is shaky because he thinks Jackie wanted more after the Amazing Race. Jeff was distance between them so the others see them as individuals and not a pair. John talks abut bad pickup lines with Liz, Steve, and Jeff. Steve came up with the best line: "Are those space pants? Because your butt looks out of this world." Time for the twist. Da'vonne and Liz cannot be nominated or evicted. They each get to take one person with them. They have 3 minutes to make a decision. Vanessa's plan is to pick someone who can win HOH next week. Vanessa starts having one on ones with everyone to look for someone who brings something to the game physically. Da'vonne said that she doesn't want to choose Audrey or Shelli because Da'vonne doesn't want to blow up the alliance. Da'vonne tells Steve that he gives off the Ian vibe. Da'vonne asks John who he would go for if he was HOH and if he is really a dentist. Da'vonne chose to save Liz. Vanessa saved Austin. Austin said that he would stay with Vanessa unless something else came up. Shelli was unhappy that Da'vonne did not pick either her or Audrey.

Jace and Austin then make lots of shell jokes with seashells, and then decide to call their alliance Shelltown. As Austin says, it's a great alliance because Jace has a loud mouth, and he's a bigger target. Clay talks with Shelli. It seems he's into older women, and he doesn't care if she was married, as long as she doesn't have kids. Shelli and Clay start an alliance based on flirtation. Da'vonne doesn't like Shelli's relationship with Clay, and she tells Audrey that they have to keep Shelli at arms reach. Audrey says that she is bonded with Jason by culture. Da'vonne and Audrey talk about Austin and Jace having an alliance. They want to get rid of Jace because he's a good competitor. Jason and Audrey talk about Jace will win HOHs because he is so physical. I don't know how that will work in the mental games.

Steve is trying to make an alliance with Da'vonne because she is quiet and very observant. Da'vonne, Audrey, James, and Jason talk about forming an alliance. They say the only way to get rid of Jace is through a backdoor plan. James has to recruit pawns, and he starts with Jackie. James tells Jackie that they have to have a pawn up because they can't have the target up. Jason talks to John, and says that he might go up because that he isn't the target. Then James and Jason talk to Meg about being a pawn. Then they talk to Becky and Steve. Steve says that he is against going up as a pawn because it's tricky. James and Jason really put the pressure on him. Steve says that so many people who went up as pawns went home. Steve tries to tell them that the pawns go home to frequently.

Jason goes first with his nominations. James says that he's from the country, and he's not afraid to make waves. Jason goes first in revealing his nominations: John and Becky. He says that he hasn't had a strong connection, but thinks they are strong competitors. James reveals Steve and Jackie. Jace said that he wasn't worried about going on the block. Audrey is happy that the plan was executed. Steve and Jackie talk since they are nominations. Jackie says that they are trying to backdoor someone. Steve starts analyzing things, and Jackie loses interest. Becky was really surprised and a little hurt, and Jason called her over and said that he was very sorry. Jason said the does not like to make no girl cry, and he wants to keep himself safe. Becky is sure that she and John will win the Battle of the Block, which they do.

Time for the Battle of the Block. Each team is supposed to construct a building out of blocks. They have a map, and they have to take the 26 blocks on a twisting maze. Becky and John exchange blocks on the beam, while Jackie and Steve each go the whole maze. if they fall off the beams, they have to go back to the beginning. Steve is doing really bad on the beam, and he starts crawling so he doesn't fall. It looks like it is close. However, Becky and John win. James is the sole HOH. Jason is back with the peasants as he says. Steve says he has to do whatever he can to win the POV and save himself.

Saturday, June 27, 2015 -- Evening

cover of Irrationally Yours by Dan Ariely I subscribe to Dan Ariely's weekly email of answers to questions people send him via the Wall Street Journal. People ask Ariely a variety of questions on topics that involve life, work, and behavior. Ariely, knowing a good opportunity when he sees one, collected the questions and answers into his newest book, Irrationally Yours: On Missing Socks, Pickup Lines, and Other Existential Puzzles. The book is a short, fast, highly entertaining read, and it will definitely getting you thinking about your decisions and behavior.

As an example of a question, someone mentioned that he and his wife were wondering if they should start a family. Ariel's advice was to stay with a family for a week and observe the interactions. Then the couple should offer to watch the kids for a whole week. As Ariely said, if you thought his suggestions were asking too much, maybe you shouldn't have kids of your own. Ariely provides logical, rational insight into the dilemmas and questions that people have. One that particularly caught my attention was the letter from someone who hated his job of eight years and wondered if he should get a new job. Ariely suggested that the person take a long vacation (three weeks) and volunteer at the place that he thought he might like to work. He could then decide if the grass was greener elsewhere. If the guy wasn't interested in trying out the volunteer job, Ariely suggested that maybe the guy's dissatisfaction with the job wasn't that great, and the guy should just stay where he was and stop complaining.

I love to read Ariely's insights into behavior. Since I subscribe to the newsletter, I read (and remembered) the majority of letters. What made the book new and interesting for me were the cartoons by William Haefeli. They did a great job of illustrating, in a comic way, Ariely's feedback. If you haven't read anything by Ariely, you should definitely read this book. It will give you a taste of rational thinking, and it will make you want to read more of Ariely's writing.

Thursday, June 25, 2015 -- Evening

Night Two
The show started with Julie Chen saying something about a surprise house guest kicking things off. We meet the house guests with Liz coming up first. Rumor has it that she is the one with the twin. Next up is Jason, who is a stock boy. He lives in his mom's basement. Vanessa is next. She's a poker player, and is supposed to be one of the best poker players in the world. She also supposedly studied game theory. John, the dentist, is a crazy person. He's in dentistry for the money, and he would like a showmance. Becky is from Denver, and she looks like an outdoorsy girl. Steve is a music and audio engineer. Steve says he's a socially awkward engineer/nerd. John hates super fans, while Jason sys he is a super fan, of course.

Julie tells the six that some house guests are already in the house. Julie them about the Battle of the Block, and that there is already a HOH. Then she tells them about the BB Takeover. Becky, LIz, and Steve are the first three to go in. Meg comments on Steve not being Mr. Sauve with the ladies. Liz thinks Clay is fine. Jace makes an ass out of himself by asking Becky what part of Rado (as in Colorado( is she from. Steve really puts on a show looking around. Vanessa said that she is at an information deficit. Liz says that things and people aren't always what they seem. They do introductions to each other. Da'vonne doesn't believe that John is a dentist. She says he gives off a not a dentist vibe. Jace is annoying because he thinks it's good that Liz is single. Clay thinks Steve is an Ian Terry twin. Vanessa says that she's a DJ. LIke Da'vonne she is hiding the poker skills. Da'vonne says that Jason is a Pee Wee Herman character. Jace comments that there are two empty seats. John's voice is really annoying.

The BB Takeover is going to happen now, and there is Phil from Amazing Race. He says that big Brother house guests have gone onto Amazing Race. So they are bringing Jeff and Jackie from Amazing Race (they didn't know each other before the show) to enter the game. I already hate them. Jeff says they are close friends, but not passionate. They play that lame Takeover song. The house guests are not that thrilled with Jeff and Jackie, because they may be a couple, and they already played a game.

Julie calls everyone to the living room. Time for the second HOH competition. One of eight in the second group have to sit out. Jackie wants to sit out. No one wants to volunteer, then Vanessa takes the gamble and volunteers. They all go out to the backyard. John sounds like a crazy guy. The competition is to hold on to a pole while the UFO that hovers above them tries to pull them up with rope that is attached to them. Steve decides that he doesn't want to win to put a target on him. Jackie wants to show that she is a competitor. Jason is trying to win. Then they get shot with some green slime. Steve is the first one pulled off. Jeff decides to make the target on him smaller, but getting pulled up. Next to go is John. Becky has a funky looking mouth, and she's off next. Liz, Steve, and Jackie are left. Then Liz's legs came off the pole, but she still hung on.

Liz is trying to talk herself into hanging on. Then she gets pulled off. Jeff hopes that Jackie wins it. Jason is tired of stocking groceries, and he not coming off the pole. Jason tells Jackie that he won't put her up. So Jason wins the second HOH.

We then got the schedule: Battle of the Block on Sunday, POV on Wednesday, eviction on Thursday. Then Phil from Amazing Race said that with risk comes reward, and Da'vonne and Vanessa will get some sort of reward that we will learn of later.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015 -- Evening

Big Brother Premiere Night
Finally! The start of my summer! Big Brother! Julie Chen looked quite nice in an elegant black pant suit. Julie said there would be three twists this year: one of which is the fan favorite, the BB Takeover, and something else that I missed. On to the house guests. First up was James. Next was Meg, who was annoying. Jace seems like a stupid, hippy type. Then we met Audrey, who says that she is a girly girl to the extreme. She says that she's a girl's girl. Austin, goes by Judas, and he seems unusual with his Master's in Romance Literature and wrestling background. Da'vonne is a poker dealer, who doesn't mind getting blood on her hands. Clay threw a football without his shirt on. He has a nice chest and abs. Shelli does building work on her interview. Shelli goes on about being a puma, and Clay talks about getting a showmance. Da'vonne has studied the game she said since season 1. Clay takes a little bible in his back pocket, and Da'vonne cries over her baby.

Da'vonne, Shelli, Clay, and Austin are the first four into the house. Austin seems to be really tall, and Clay says Austin looks like a giant magician. Shelli has the hots for Clay. Audrey, Meg, Jace, and James then go into the house. Not sure where the other four are, or the two extra that rumor has it will be there. Audrey is talk, and says it's hard to process all that is going on around her. They walked upstairs to see the glass floored bridge.

Jace is a personal trainer. Meg giggles. Clay says he's a grad student at Texas A&M. Shelli is drooling over Clay, even though she is 10 years old. Shelli says that the interesting thing about her is that she has a boy twin. Clay and Shelli seem to be ready to have sex. Da'vonne says that she's a second grade school teacher, because she is going to keep the poker player bit hidden. Austin says that he's a wrestler. Meg is boring. James syas he's Asian and country. He does sound like he came off of Duck Dynasty. Audrey is next and admits that she is transgender. Audrey said that she completely transitioned three years ago.

Everyone seems to love everyone else. Audrey says that there are some buff guys, and she's worried about them taking over as she talks with Shelli and Da'vonne. So they form an alliance on day one. Clay comes in to talk to the girls, and he asks Audrey how her family handled the transition. Audrey told the story about how her parents at first sent her to a camp with troubled boys to "straighten" her out. Da'vonne thinks that Audrey is playing the group. The eight of the house guests go into the living room to talk to Julie. Julie said that she will reveal two twists. First up is the fan favorite, and Da'vonne guesses that the Battle of the Block is back. That means two HOH contestants, and four total nominations. The victory of one pair of nominees knocks the HOH who nominated them out.

Now it's time for the HOH competition. They have to make a decision because one of them must sit the HOH competition out. Before Austin can volunteer, Da'vonne jumps in and volunteers. The third twist is a secret for our ears only.

The HOH competition is setup like a movie premiere with Kevin Frazier. Shelli said that she would love to date Ryan Reynolds, and she thinks Clay looks just like him. The competition has the house guests on platform. The first to catch 10 tomatoes without falling, wins. James has the early lead with two. Clay is the first one to fall off, quickly followed by Austin and Meg. James has three balls. Jace, meanwhile, almost fell. Then they got sprayed with tomato flavored water. Jace almost falls again. He comes off the board, which I think should throw him off. Audrey managed to tie with James and Jace with five tomatoes each. James gets the lead with seven balls. Then quickly gets eight. Audrey looks like she fell first, but then all went down. Julie says they have to review the tapes to see who won.

James was the last to touch the red carpet, so he won HOH. Audrey hopes James doesn't nominate her. Julie calls everyone into the living room. It's time for the new twist. The twist is a new twist every week: The BB Takeover. Big Brother will play a lame song that will signal the takeover. They have to expect the unexpected.

The first twist is the Twin Twist, which we happened in BB5. It's the same deal. The twins will switch up, and if they make it past five evictions, they get to both go into the house.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 -- Evening

cover of The Fairy-Tale Detectdives by Michael Buckley
The Fairy-Tale Detectives by Michael Buckley
I enjoy reading a good children's book, and when I heard about The Sisters Grimm series, I knew I would have to check it out. I got the first book in the series from the library, The Fairy-Tale Detectives. Sabrina Grimm, an eleven-year-old, and her sister, Daphne, seven-years-old, are abandoned by their parents. Well, at least, the parents leave the house one day to never return. The girls are bounced around from a variety of crappy foster homes, until they learn that their grandmother has come forward to claim them. The problem is that their father had always told them that their grandmother was dead. The grandmother turns out to be a thoroughly weird character, who makes really weird looking and tasting food. Daphne, of course, loves her new grandmother, but Sabrina distrusts the woman. When weird things start to happen, like a giant footprint that seems to encircle a crushed farm house, Granny Relda explains that they are the family Grimm. The stories told by the Brothers Grimm were true, and the Grimms have gone through life dealing with the problems that the fairy tale characters, called Everafters, cause. Sabrina doesn't believe Granny Relda, and tries to run away. However, Granny Relda is captured by a huge giant right in front of Sabrina's and Daphne's eyes, Sabrina finally believes Granny Relda. Sabrina and Daphne think that Prince Charming, who is Mayor of Ferryport Landing, New York, where Granny Relda and the Everafters live. Granny Relda's friend, Mr. Canis, turns out to be the Big Bad Wolf. Puck and Jack, of Jack and the Beanstalk, also make appearances with one being the villain while the other is the hero, and I'm going to leave it to you to read the book to figure out which is which.

The Fairy-Tale Detectives is a entertaining take on the modern fairy tale, and I really enjoyed reading it. There seven other books in the series, and I know that I want to find out what happens to Sabrina and Daphne, and to see if they find their parents, who may have been kidnapped by some Everafters who want the Grimm family dead. If the last Grimm dies, the spell that binds the Everafters to Ferryport Landing will be broken, and the Everafters can be free to roam the world again. Not only will the youngster in your life enjoy the story, but you will too.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 -- Evening

Cast Reveal
Big Brother announced the cast today. One of the interesting choices is Audrey, who is the first transgender participant in Big Brother. I didn't watch all of the videos, but you can check out all the new contestants.

Monday, June 15, 2015 -- Afternoon

Reveal of Big Brother House
Big Brother 17 starts next week, and the cast should be revealed tomorrow. There was some news today with the first pictures from the Big Brother house. The house looks very colorful and modern. The part that I think is the most interesting is the clear glass bridge. I'm getting excited for my summer entertainment to start. In the meantime, if you want to watch the live feeds, you have to sign up for CBS all-access. For $5.99 a month, you get access to all the CBS shows in addition to the live feeds. What's really cool is that you can watch all the episodes from the previous 16 seasons. I signed up, and I've been watching season 3 of Big Brother (with Marcellas). Great fun!

Saturday, June 13, 2015 -- Evening

cover of Murder at the Smithsonian by Margaret Truean
Murder at the Smithsonian by Margaret Truman
Who would think that a former president's daughter could write an interesting mystery? Well, I've read that Margaret Truman did just that, although I believe there were rumors that her books had ghost writers. There are so many authors out that that I haven't read, and Truman was one of them. Amazon had some of her books on sale for the Kindle, and I took the opportunity to read Murder at the Smithsonian. It's not the first book that she wrote, but the books aren't series books, so i figured it would be okay to read them out of order. Plus I had a hankering for a mystery set in a museum.

Dr. Lewis Tunney is a friend of the vice president, and it seems he also has some secret information about goings on at the Smithsonian. At a gala at the museum, Tunney winds up getting killed with Jefferson's sword, and at the same time, the Legion of Harsa medal goes missing. The murderer has to be one of the guests at the gala, but who could it be. When Mac Hanrahan investigates, he finds his way blocked by everyone. The Vice President is not being very helpful, and the employees at the museum seem to act pretty suspiciously. When Tunney's fiancee, Heather McBea shows up, the investigation becomes even more cloudy. Heather's uncle was the one who donated the Harsa to the museum. The uncle also supposedly committed suicide, which Heather doesn't believe he would do. Then Heather starts to be the victim of some mysterious doings, such as a mugging, room ransack, and bombing. Can Mac Hanrahan figure out what's going on before Heather turns up dead.

The mystery in the book was a good one. However, I did have a problem with Heather. Every time she has information, that she should have shared with Mac if she really wanted Tunney's murder to be solved, she would keep it to herself. Then she would find herself in a threatening situation, and she would STILL keep her mouth shut. I found myself yelling at the book in frustration because Heather was so stupid and has such a lack of self preservation. I seem to be running into that a lot with mysteries lately, and I had the same complaint about Miss Seeton. I guess it's supposed to add to the suspense, but it doesn't work for me. I will continue to read Truman because I have a few more on my Kindle.