Thursday, July 26, 2018

Fun to say T-13

1. mr. green jeans

2. mellow yellow

3. jacques chirac

4. White Knight

5. black leather jacket

6. willy nilly

7. betty boop

8. fluffer nutter

9.  howdy doody

10. butter brickle

11. rubber baby buggy bumper

12. piggly wiggly

13.  jimmy dean's pure pork sausage

Thursday 13

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

On the dubious joy of the Northern Cardinal

Our very first Cardinal arrived yesterday for what appeared to be an extended visit.  Most times we get a fly-over and never see another.
He landed in the trees  outside, and proceeded to sing its little heart out.  After seven solid hours (with what appeared to be much-needed rest breaks) it finally stopped, although now and then until total dark fell, he would fire it up again, in case we missed something.   It's like living next door to an Italian tenor who needs to practice those scales daily, hourly.

I know we'll get used to it soon enough,  it will become part of the background noise.

cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy

cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy

whoit whoit whoit whoit wicket wicket wicket wicket 

cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy
cheeeer cheeer cheeeer  birdybirdybirdybirdybirdy

and before you jump all over me, yes it's a beautiful bird, and a true novelty. But I am reminded of the two days we had some years ago when I woke to the sound of a peacock shrieking outside our window.  Turned out he had escaped from a farm down the road that had exotic birds.  The cats were terrified, and hid inside for two days until he finally left, never to return.  I suspect a coyote dined well for a few days on that one, sadly. 

Sunday, July 15, 2018


(comments not mine.  I found this list years ago, time to share it again)

 Cooking instructions on a package of Bacon:
 "Broil slices for 6-7 minutes on each side. No turning necessary"
 (Do they turn themselves over?)

 On packaging for a Rowenta iron:
 "Do not iron clothes on body."
 (But wouldn't this save even more time?)

 On Boot's Children's Cough Medicine:
 "Do not drive a car or operate machinery after taking this
 (We could do a lot to reduce the rate of construction accidents if we
 could just get those 5-year-olds with head-colds off those

 On Nytol Sleep Aid:
 "Warning: May cause drowsiness."
 (One would hope.)

 On most brands of Christmas lights:
"For indoor or outdoor use only."
(As opposed to what?)

 On a Japanese food processor:
 "Not to be used for the other use."
 (I gotta admit, I'm curious.)

On Sainsbury's peanuts:
 "Warning: contains nuts."
 (Talk about a news flash.)

 On a child's Superman costume:
 "Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly."
 (I don't blame the company. I blame parents for this one.)

On a Swedish chain saw:
 "Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands or genitals."
 (Was this happening somewhere? My God!)

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Binge reading

Since last fall I've been trying to cut down on the sheer number of books in this house;  many of them were the 'why not' of yard sales, or library sales, many were experimental in nature or just a poor fit.  And some were old friends, read a few times and remembered fondly.

The only way to find out was to just sit down and read 'em.

It appears I have outgrown some of my oldest books, and while the memory is good, the reading--now--isn't.  Out. Some I've returned to (Calvin Trillin is one ) and realize what a charmer he was.

Binge reading authors, book by book,  can be a valuable exercise,  as it shows progress from first book to last both in the characters and the authors.   Some authors--like Pratchett and Sue Grafton--show an interesting development, stronger story lines, more interesting back stories.  Some just dwindle.  Ray Bradbury and Robert Parker are dwindlers, for very different reasons. Patricia Cornwell burgeons, becoming gorier and angrier with each book.

I try to save a bit of money when filling in a series writer by haunting places that sell used books;  a good way to tell the enduring popularity of an author is by how many of their books are on the shelves.  Sue Grafton is hard to find,  as is Terry Pratchett and Robert Parker, The DaVinci Code and Patricia Cornwell are apparently one-time reads and then given away.  I'm leery of any author who practically owns an entire shelf with his or her work, usually huge, 700 page monstrosities.

In the throes (I just finished "X") of the Sue Grafton  series, I've been reading them in order, steadily.  In doing this, I've seen how her writing has changed, how her style has morphed into something more complex and richer, and noticed that her character's progress is only about a five or six year stretch, with tags to previous books that really don't get in the way of the story line.  But what did disturb me is how little I actually recall about any of them. To be fair, some of these books go back to the late 80s and haven't been read since. But even the most recent leave me with blank spots. Did I even READ this?

I've also discovered along the way, that authors who resort to cute names for their characters, or cute antagonists (i.e. Tommy Tippler or Aggie Eggers) or even cuter animals who write the stories, are not really my thing at all.   It seems as if too much time is expended on an attempt at humor in the middle of what wants to be a solid serious-but-fun read.

On to P.D. James.  =)

Friday, July 6, 2018

how we spent our anniversary (for the curmudgeons out there)

I mowed the grass this morning
later on he went outside and cut some lumber for a kitchen project
while I slopped some paint remover stuff on a painted timber
and removed about half of it

Later in the day we took  the trailer and went to Home
Depot to pick up some wallboard and plywood. 

For our anniversary supper he had the last of the tunafish salad
with chips (we threw caution to the wind) and olives.  I had
an orange. 

No one appeared to scare the bejebus out of us with HAPPY ANNIVERSARY,
and no one invited us to a cookout,  a surprise party, or a seekrit celebration. 

It was a lovely day,  and we may just do it again next  year.