Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Flowers for You

Instead of a real post, how about some flowers on a rainy day?


Tulips at Work


It turns out, if you add pennies to the water, tulips won't fall apart. These have been on my desk for a week.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


Gwen died last night. She didn't really bounce back from her last steroid shot a couple of weeks ago and on Tuesday night it became painfully obvious that her time had come. We took her to the vet last night; she is being cremated and we will bury her in the Spring.

Gwennie had a way of always making her presence known, for better or worse. She could be neurotic, crabby and extremely shy. She was also pretty, cuddly, and could put up with Judy's insanity far better than anyone else. She peed on Len's dirty clothes (and sometimes our clean clothes) and had taken to smacking the dog. We'll miss her terribly.

Friday, February 13, 2009

25 Things of Nothin'

I've got nothing. Nothing interesting. I'm halfway through legwarmer #2. No pictures. I made a black skirt with white polka dots. No pictures. The snow is gone and the potholes are out. And my sinuses hurt. I'm a barrel of laughs.

So to kill some time I will try this 25 Things thing that is going around. My brother did it. Sharon did it. What the heck.

1. I'm terrible with money. I'm not in that much debt, but only because no one is stupid enough to give me very much credit.

2. While I'm easily annoyed, I don't have much of a temper.

3. I hate playing games. Not only do I hate losing (which I usually do), but I hate winning too. It seems to make whoever I played against angry. I don't see how that is fun.

4. I am the only coffee drinker in my immediate family. None of my siblings, or parents, or Len drink the stuff.

5. I tried to give up coffee once. It lasted 6 weeks, but I missed making it.

6. I don't drink much pop (or soda, whatever).

7. I drink a lot of water.

8. Easily my favorite part of my job is looking for Vital Statistics. Did you know that the largest average number of births occurred on a Friday in 1984? The fewest was on Sunday. 10,681 and 8,517 respectively.

9. Which leads to a question: why would anyone care how many babies were born on an average Sunday?

10. I am a feminist.

11. Of the radical variety. Which does not mean I hate men. Feminism has nothing to do with men. Which is a radical thought in and of itself.

12. Do you ever notice in ads trying to sell cleaning products or almost anything having to do with domestic scut work, it is always women doing (and enjoying) the work? Feh. I use vinegar and baking soda.

13. I hate Valentines Day.

14. I am terrible at remembering birthdays and anniversaries. My mother usually reminds me about my father's birthday and they have been divorced for over 30 years. Sad.

15. I never get sick.

16. But I've had a sinus headache since Friday and it was bad enough to keep me home yesterday.

17. I have a tattoo, which isn't a huge surprise. It is a drawing by Hannes Bok, who illustrated Science Fiction and Fantasy books in the '40s, '50s and '60s (including some by L. Ron Hubbard).

18. I'm not a fall-apart kind of gal, but I cry really easily.

19. I don't have a library card.

20. I'm on Facebook, but I didn't use my last name.

21. I have a cell phone which I usually forget to turn on, or if I turn it on, it runs out of battery power and I forget to charge it.

22. I don't like to talk on the phone (Len does, which annoys the piss out of me).

23. 25 random pointless things is hard to come up with.

24. I just ordered all of the Paul Simon albums I didn't already have on CD. Hearts and Bones, One Trick Pony, Still Crazy After All These Years, and There Goes Rhymin' Simon. I have the LPs, but I don't quite know how to operate Len's stereo equipment (I have to turn two things on to operate the radio, which is my limit for complexity).

25. I like beer and I have expensive taste. I don't drink much, so why waste the one beer I will drink tonight on something cheap?

That is all.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Music, Movies, Books and TV

I think that covers all of my media bases!

Music: I've gotten a couple of CDs recently which I am enjoying very much:

Uncle Tupelo, No Depression: This is Uncle Tupelo's first album and they sound like a really, really good bar band, a good solid fusion of country and punk (and which I think founded the genre "Alt Country"), coming down somewhat more in favor of the country. It is great fun and makes driving very enjoyable. Jeff Tweedy went on to found Wilco and Jeff Ferrar founded Sun Volt. Apparently it was quite the messy breakup -- you gotta love musician egos!

Bon Iver, For Emma, Forever Ago: This album wound up on several Best Of 2008 lists, but I resisted it for awhile. The premise sounds awfully bleak: singer songwriter retreats to a cabin in North Wisconsin during the winter to recuperate from a year of heartbreak and major illness and winds up recording an album. The result is not nearly as sorrowful as you might think, it is lovely and it sounds like winter. Not the grinding winter of now, the curl up on the couch, in front of a fire with a cat (or a calm dog), wrapped in a quilt, drinking something warm and reading your favorite book kind of winter. Warm, healing, and comforting.

Movies: Also two recent movies. We finally saw Juno. Twice. I'd heard good things, and was not disappointed. I appreciated, in particular, Juno's relationship with her stepmother (played by the great Allison Janney). It is a small thing, but I'm pretty sensitive to how stepmothers are portrayed -- I have one, who I like a lot -- and this movie got the relationship (at least as I experienced it) really well.

Darjeeling Limited has been on HBO recently. It's directed by Wes Anderson who did The Royal Tannenbaums, which I did not much care for. It is odd, sweet, funny and heartbreaking. Tannenbaums seemed quirky for its own sake, but it works here.

Books: It turns out, going to a bookstore while bored is a lot like going to a grocery store while hungry. I came away with The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid by Bill Bryson, which I have not started yet, and I Was Told There'd Be Cake by Sloane Crosley, which I am in the middle of (very funny). If you were paying attention (not that you would be), I am now in the middle of three books, which is not a good idea. The other two are Consider the Lobster and Traffic. It seems I am in a non-fiction phase.

TV: I don't really have much to say about this, except that DirecTV (our satellite provider) will be showing all seven seasons of Trailer Park Boys on Thursdays at 10:00. This show is wrong is so many ways (in one episode a father and his 10 year old daughter try to give up smoking. Hilarity ensues), but really damn funny. It stupid, wrong, foul mouthed comedy is your thing, I highly recommend you check it out. If not, stay far far away from this.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Miss Crabby Crab Head

I don't know if it is hormones, the never ending winter, the fun combination of sick cat* and sick mother**, or what, but I am not in a good place today. It doesn't help that everything I've tried to do at work has been full of complications: my computer decided to stop speaking to one of my printers, when our tech guy tried to fix it, my computer quit speaking to any printer. I was working on a list of new publications on our work blog, which is not nearly as user friendly as Blogger, formatting is a bit of a pain, and it does not autosave, occasionally, because the software wants to test my will, the post goes blank and all remnants of what I spent the hour on are gone. Good times. It goes on. I will not bore you.

*The steroids kicked in and Gwen is doing fine (aside from failing the drug test for the Tour de France). She is eating and looks quite well, it is easy to forget that anything is wrong with her at all. She goes in for her next round this weekend.

**My has had a very large kidney stone for a few months, surgery was postponed for a variety of reasons, but last Tuesday the thing shifted and it became very necessary to get it out. She had surgery on Wednesday. Basically, they do a small incision, insert a tube, blast the stone apart and suck out the bits. They don't usually get all the bits in one go, so she got to keep the tube and she is going in for round 2 on Friday, so I will be spending this weekend in South Haven.

I had planned on going out there this past weekend, and in fact, turned down a sewing date with Stef, but my brother was there and my mom suspected she would be needing me soon (trust me, it was for the best, I was not good company), so I finally made a pillow for Lizzy's new(ish) kennel. Fred loves it.

Fred Takes Over Lizzy's Bed

Lizzy likes it, too, when she gets to use it. I also screwed up cutting out a skirt, 'cos that is the way it is going these days.

Oh well. At least I don't have a tube sticking out of my back.