Yet Another Journal

Nostalgia, DVDs, old movies, television, OTR, fandom, good news and bad, picks, pans,
cute budgie stories, cute terrier stories, and anything else I can think of.


 Contact me at yetanotherjournal (at) mindspring (dot) com

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» Monday, June 30, 2003
Found some old "This or That Tuesday" items:

1. "The Munsters" or "The Addams Family"?

The Addams Family. Who could resist John Astin as Gomez? "Tish, you spoke French!"

2. "The Sopranos" or the "Godfather" movies?

Neither. Ugh. Mafia movies. Ugh.

3. "The Jetsons" or "Lost in Space"?

Hmmm. The Jetsons because it was funnier. But I had a crush on Mark Goddard once...

4. "Superman" or "Batman" (either the TV shows or the movies)?

Superman. I always had a "thing" for Clark Kent. (I liked the George Reeves series best, even if the later eps did get silly. Loved the original black and white Robert Maxwell shows!)

5. "Sex & The City" or "Friends"?

Barf. Neither. Remember WENN.

6. "The Wizard of Oz" or the "Harry Potter" movies?

Harry Potter movies.

7. "The Simpsons" or "King of the Hill"?

The Simpsons, if I have to pick one. Everyone in King of the Hill is so adenoidally dopey. What I really prefer is Futurama.

8. "Grease" or "Saturday Night Fever"?

Fifties or disco? This is a choice? Neither -- how about a nice Rogers and Hammerstein musical instead?

9. Old prime-time soaps: "Dallas" or "Dynasty"?

Neither. The Waltons.

10. Not very thought-provoking this week...do you prefer TV shows or movies?

That is a hard one, given the state of TV at the moment and given the state of movies at the moment. Okay, TV...but only if I can watch the History Channel and HGTV and PBS and Discovery and The Travel Channel.




1. Cats or dogs?

Dogs.

2. Butterflies or birds?

Birds!

3. Horses or cows?

Horses. (I hope the cows will forgive me considering all the milk I drink!)

4. Turtles or snakes?

Turtles. But I don't really like reptiles at all.

5. Frogs or grasshoppers?

That is a WEIRD choice. Amphibians versus insects? Um. Grasshoppers, I guess.

6. Lions or tigers?

Lions. I lost my heart to Kimba the white lion at an early age. <g>

7. Elephants or mice?

Mice. In cages, thank you.

8. Porcupines or aardvarks?

Whichever eats the most ants.

9. Unicorns or dragons?

Unicorns.

10. Thought-provoking question of the week: You live in a rather dumpy apartment. A friend offers you a chance to be a roommate at a new place s/he is moving into, but they don't allow pets. You have a pet. Do you find your pet a new home and take the new place, or do you keep your pet and stay put?

Give up Bandit for some fancy apartment? Would you give away your only child to live in the White House?


Flourish

BTW, a note to the gentleman--and I use the term loosely--who was driving through the Dunleith neighborhood of Marietta at about 4:20 p.m. on Friday, June 27, in a dark blue old Chevy Impala sized car with Habersham County tags: Hey! Why don't you toss your stupid trash out the window in your neighborhood instead of dirtying up ours????


Flourish

» Friday, June 27, 2003
A Useful Spam?

I don't know what Earthlink did, if they changed search terms in the Spaminator or simply weakened it somehow or if all the gobbledegook and spaces and symbols in the lettering is just allowing the spam to pass freely, but the junk mail in my e-box has just exploded the last few weeks. We get 40-50 of these puppies a day, and if I go into my spam filter there are hundreds more.

One did make me laugh today. The subject line said "Last As Long as You Want in Bed." Such is my state of mind...or tiredness...these days that I responded, "Oh, good, you've got something that will help me sleep late?" <g>


Flourish

Friday Five

1. How are you planning to spend the summer [winter]?

Sweltering, fighting off bugs, and working. Summer's no fun unless you're a kid out of school.

2. What was your first summer job?

I worked in a jewelry factory as a charger. That's the person who puts the pellet of solder on a piece of jewelry like an earring so that the earring post can be soldered to the piece of jewelry by someone with a soldering iron.

3. If you could go anywhere this summer [winter], where would you go?

Somewhere cool!

4. What was your worst vacation ever?

Probably the summer I got the measles in July.

5. What was your best vacation ever?

Driving cross-country from Rhode Island to California and back with my folks (we actually did this twice). Went to Disneyland and Universal Studios and Las Vegas for the first time, went to my first Jewish wedding, rode horseback for the first time, saw lots of great scenery and neat stuff like Hearst Castle, Lombard Street in San Francisco, Meremac Caverns, etc., and rode a cable car.


Flourish

» Thursday, June 26, 2003
Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Rings- Hmmm.. How are you about jewelry? Do you wear any? ...none? What is your day to day complement. ...and what one particular piece do you save for special occasions?

I wear my wedding ring and my St. Jude medal all the time. (Does my watch count as jewelry?) My fingers have gotten too fat for my engagement ring and the little silver ring I used to wear on my right hand. I have some Christmas pins I wear at Christmas time, and a couple of pins that are suitable for going on a suit for a job interview.

Twosome: Things- Ah, and how about those 'things' about the place? You know, the ones that you cannot throw out, but don't seem to really have a place of their own... Where do they end up? ...in The Drawer? ...or do you have a better place for those bits of randomness that just seem to show up now and again?

Where do they go? Everywhere. Drives me nuts. Computer table, coffee table, sofa, night table, headboard of the bed. Sometimes I wish I could chuck 'em all...

Threesome: and fine array- Okay, so Summer's here (except in the Land Down Under)... What is your "fine array" to clothe yourself in for the next few months? Do you still maintain? ...or do you 'go native' with vengence? Hmmmm???

I'm too fat to go native. Sorry, I'm not going to disgust people by displaying my blubber in all its glory. Maybe someday if I lose weight, but not now.

(And I wish I was "Down Under" right now. Summer! Pffft!)


Flourish

» Wednesday, June 25, 2003
DVD Reviews


I did a bad, bad thing. I discovered Deep Discount DVD.

I’ve had good luck with them so far, although my copy of The Court Jester, which is backordered, still hasn't come yet. The prices are great, great, great and they are reasonably prompt and don't charge your credit card until your order ships. It’s not like I need The Court Jester tomorrow.

Just some notes on recent things:

My Favorite Year--one of my favorite movies. (For the uninitiated, the premise: a young writer on a TV variety show in 1954--a thinly disguised version of Sid Caesar's Your Show of Shows--agrees to take care of his hero, a tipsy fading actor famous for his swashbuckling films, until he can appear onstage live Saturday night; the incident was based loosely on the experiences of Mel Brooks "babysitting" Errol Flynn before his appearance on Caesar's series.) The DVD comes with an extra bonus, Richard Benjamin's commentary, with all sorts of nice goodies about the making of the movie. My favorite was the story of the scene in Central Park between Alan Swann and Benjie. As written, the story contained a series of jokes for this scene. Peter O'Toole read the script, then suggested that instead of the scene as written, he would like to do a story about what really happened to an actual actor. Hence the charming "Clarence Duffy" scene.

M*A*S*H, Season 3--which was less expensive at DDD than at Sam's Club, a real shocker. It is lucky I'm buying M*A*S*H simply because it's one of my favorite series and I want all the episodes uncut--so many funny bits have been butchered by excise for extra commercials. Certainly if I were doing it for the quality I'd have to be disappointed in this third set. When I got the Season 1 set, I remember thinking M*A*S*H had never looked so good. The masters (??) they used for Season 3 aren't anywhere near as good--a bit grainy and dust speckled. Still, the missing scenes make up for everything. I didn't even remember there had been a tag to "The General Flipped at Dawn," let alone what was in it.

Anne of Green Gables--which I actually got at Sam's because DDD didn't have it. I'm wondering why...it certainly may be the quality. I'm astonished that Kevin Sullivan, with all the care and detail he put into this production, allowed it to go to DVD so miserably. I have only watched bits of it, but the picture is definitely grainy and any time Anne or any of the other characters is wearing a small-checked fabric, there is a definite moire effect that is distracting and hard on the eyes. Mollifying this bad transfer slightly: a short TV spot about the series, Megan Follows' audition tape, and some excised scenes, a couple of them bloopers (listen to the plane flying overhead as Gilbert talks to Anne!), the majority featuring Christiane Kruger, who played Mrs. Allen. These latter scenes were restored to the series when it played in Germany, since Kruger is a noted actress there.



Flourish

» Tuesday, June 24, 2003
This or That Tuesday: June 24: Everybody's Gone Surfin'!

1. Surf sites at random, or have a set list of regular reads?

I start out with regular reads, then may do a search on something I'm interested in.

2. Do you visit mostly blogs, or news or other sites?

Other sites, although I do check friends' blogs every day, as well as James Lileks.

3. Do you go online every day, or just a couple of days a week?

Several times a day. It's cheap entertainment.

4. Do you allow comments on your blog, or not?

Never figured out how you do it.

5. Do you shop online at all, or at regular stores?

Both, but a lot online because it's cheaper. Amazon and Deep Discount DVD are two of my favorite places.

6. Have you ever done online bill-paying/banking, or not?

YES. Love it. If the payments are late, it's the bank's fault, not mine. Don't ever want to go back to writing checks.

7. Which news site do you prefer... MSNBC.com or CNN.com? Or do you prefer some other one?

CNN. Microslop...ugh. I also visit Fox News.

8. Live chat rooms, or message boards?

Live chat. Meet friends there on Fridays and Saturdays (and Wednesdays, if folks would show up...).

9. Instant messaging or e-mail?

E-mail, though I do chat to one person regularly through IM.

10. Yes or no: have you ever met, or at least talked on the phone with, another blogger? If not, would you want to? Why or why not?

Well, yeah, considering two of the blogs I read are by friends who live nearby, one's an hour away, and one I met two years ago.


Flourish

» Friday, June 20, 2003
Friday Five

What? No Harry Potter questions? LOL. (Never mind--I get it...it's "Hairy" Potter...)

1. Is your hair naturally curly, wavy, or straight? Long or short?

I keep it long. It's a bit wavy; when it gets dirty it curls.

2. How has your hair changed over your lifetime?

My mom kept it in "banana curls" when I was small, but I made so much fuss when she washed my hair (even Johnson's "No More Tears" baby shampoo irritated my eyes) that it was short until I went to junior high. Then I began growing it long.

3. How do your normally wear your hair?

Tied back with a barette.

4. If you could change your hair this minute, what would it look like?

I wouldn't. I like it long.

5. Ever had a hair disaster? What happened?

No. I avoided having a perm because of too many hair disasters.


Flourish

» Thursday, June 19, 2003
Warning: Potterspeak Ahead

Okay, I was bad. I went searching Usenet for the Harry Potter "spoilers" the New York Daily News published. Oh, heavens, big deal. One would have thought they gave away the "big one," namely which character Rowling killed off, or some other stupendous thing, like "the truth" Dumbledore says he is going to tell Harry or who Betty chooses, Scott or Victor (oops, wait! wrong cliffhanger!!! <g>). We get a few bits of plot, just enough to tantalize us. The names of a few new characters, including the female Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Some short news about Ron. Something that almost happens to Dudley. One short line about something perfectly predictable about Harry's maturing feelings toward a certain girl.

If you feel that any of the above info spoils the book, just wait: less than 36 hours to go. If it piques your interest, just go to Google Groups and search on +potter +"daily news".

All it did was whet my appetite all the more. 35 hours, 26 minutes; 20 seconds...and counting...


Flourish

Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Potter- Which Harry Potter character is your favourite? Why do you like him or her?

Pigwidgeon! Rowling created an owl with the personality of a budgie! I love it! Oh, human character. Hermoine. Because she's smart.

Twosome: Publication- Is there one publication that you just have to read? A paper you read daily, a magazine you read weekly or monthly? Newsletters? And do you buy it for the articles, or just to look at the pictures? ;) Whatever it is, tell us about it!

Reminisce magazine. I subscribe to it; love the old stories. Also Best of British, a nostalgic magazine akin to Reminisce and Period Living and Traditional Homes, which I mostly do buy for the pictures. Love to read about these folks fixing up 200+ year old houses (wouldn't fancy doing it myself).

Threesome: Party!- The festivities begin tomorrow night in bookstores across the US and England, (and elsewhere too, probably!) with fun and games for the kid in all of us. Do you plan to be there standing in the queue when the clock strikes midnight to pick up your copy of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix?

But of course. We have friends doing readings from the books that evening at a nearby Barnes & Noble. (Shameless plug to any audience this blog possibly has: Friday, beginning at 10 p.m., the Atlanta Radio Theatre Company will be appearing at the Perimeter Mall Barnes & Noble, just north of Atlanta, Georgia, doing readings from the first four Potter novels. These folks are great!)


Flourish

» Wednesday, June 18, 2003
No, no, you misunderstood. Turn the spigot off. Off! OFF! ::glub::

please?

I mean, really. I have a sinus headache on my right side that is so far immune to three Advil, my teeth ache, my elbows and finger joints hurt, the back yard has standing water in it, and the dog is getting crosseyed from holding it rather than daring to go outside in something that's so like a bath. Enough already. Basta!

Isn't it simply bad enough that it's summer? God, was there ever more miserable a season? The rain just makes it worse. In the fall you have so many things to look forward to: autumn leaves, Thanksgiving, cool air, anticipation of whatever midwinter holiday you celebrate, pretty lights, good food, warm blankets, the New Year, maybe snow, fireplaces and cocoa (just cocoa for those without fireplaces), evenings round the TV or playing games, Valentine’s Day--the only depressing thing is taking down the Christmas tree. What do you have to look forward to in summer?--heat, humidity, weeds, sweat, bugs, sunburn, bites, allergies, lawns needing cutting, pollen. Even the cookouts are marinated in perspiration and garnished with mosquitoes. Gawd. Talk about unrelieved depression for three to four months. Urgh.



Flourish

» Tuesday, June 17, 2003
BTW, we're about to drown here. Will the person who left the rain on puh-leeze shut off the dratted faucet?????


Flourish

Well, here's a new one:

This or That Tuesday

1. Newspapers or magazines?

Magazines.

2. Books-on-tape or regular books?

Regular books.

3. Paperback or hardcover?

Paperbacks. Hardcovers are too expensive. I only buy Madeleine L'Engle in hardback, although occasionally I will make an exception. I bought the fourth and fifth "Adept" books in hardcover because I simply couldn't wait for the paperback version. I got a good deal on He Shall Thunder in the Sky by Elizabeth Peters when it came out; had to grab it because I simply had to find out what happened with Nefret and Ramses. And of course I will be buying Where The Truth Lies when it's released on June 24.

4. Fiction or non-fiction?

Hard to choose. Whatever suits my fancy. I love history books.

5. Sci-Fi/Fantasy or romance novels?

Sci-fi fantasy. Went on a romance binge a couple of years ago, then got rid of what small collection I had, except for Laura Hayden's books.

6. Borrow from library or buy books (either new or used)?

Mostly buy. I have been going to the library for some of the regular mysteries I read. I realized several months back that I was not going to go back to read any of my Anne Perry or Sue Henry books, for example, and gave them to the library, which now gets them. I put the new ones on reserve when they come out.

7. Subscribe to magazines or buy on newsstand?

I get the decorating magazines on the newstand because I only buy one or two and not always the same ones. (I usually buy more in fall and winter because I'm not interested in "that airy summer look." Heck, I'm not interested in summer, period.) I subscribe to Reminisce because it's so damn hard to find on the newstand.

8. Current best-sellers or classic literature?

Hmn. Probably neither. I hate most current best-sellers. They seem to be either about sex or someone getting physically or mentally abused. I like mysteries (Anne Perry, Laurien Berenson, Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody books, Susan Conant) and also well-written childrens/young adult books, like the "History Mysteries."

9. Read books once, or re-read favorites every so often?

Definitely re-read favorites every so often. I just reread Addie Pray and Red Sky at Morning last week.

10. Here in the U.S., we have two hot best-sellers...former First Lady Hillary Clinton's memoirs, and the new Harry Potter book (coming out June 21). If you had to read one, which one...Hillary or Harry? Why?

Harry. Politicians are all pond scum. Who wants to read one of their books?


Flourish

» Saturday, June 14, 2003
Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory

I daresay I'm obsessed...but it's too much. If crying or screaming could help, I'd be halfway successful.

Summary of the ant problem so far:

1) Late April: ants on kitchen counter. Sprayed outside from possible invasion location. Ants dwindled and disappeared.

2) Early May: ants breach sliding glass doors, get in storage cupboard. Cupboard cleaned, all sweet attractants gone. Sprayed in and out. Ants gone fairly quickly.

3) Ants in upstairs bathrooms since mid-May. We thought we'd solved the problem Memorial Day weekend when we cleaned the roof of leaves and found a big ants' nest. Roof and sidings were sprayed. Little crawlies kept appearing through cracks in tile in one bathroom, ?? in other. Foundation of house was sprayed, ant granules distributed on the lawn. Should get better. Ants upstairs dwindled, never disappeared, probably due to rain that seems to never stop. Finally sprayed in both bathrooms.

4) Noticed in cleaning roof that tree branches touching roof. May be ant passage, also not good for shingles.

Today we went out and bought a 15 foot tree branch trimmer. Despite a rainshower before we started and water gushing all over us, we got many branches cut, including the one laying on the roof over the bathrooms. Could this be a help? All branches must be cut; another sojourn on roof needed.

After cleaning up from this muddy and wet occupation, went down to kitchen, which has been "clear" since mid-May to discover ants wandering all over door to refrigerator. Much anger, much cleaning, much more spraying, this time around the refrigerator, and again around the foundation of the house around the kitchen.

Dark now. Depressed. So very depressed. It seems like the plague will never end. Don't know what to do anymore, except cry.


Flourish

» Friday, June 13, 2003
Friday Five

1. What's one thing you've always wanted to do, but never have?

Visit Great Britain.

2. When someone asks your opinion about a new haircut/outfit/etc, are you always honest?

I've always tried never to lie to friends; once this got me in a lot of trouble when they misunderstood my compliment. So now I just smile and follow Thumper's dad's advice. Sigh.

3. Have you ever found out something about a friend and then wished you hadn't? What happened?

Nothing major, thankfully, but I always feel a little sad when friends who have had bad childhoods talk about it. God knows my folks and I didn't always agree, but most of the time we had great fun together and I'm sorry everyone didn't have that same experience.

4. If you could live in any fictional world (from a book/movie/game/etc.) which would it be and why?

That's an easy one. I want to work at radio station WENN (even if it does get a bit crazy sometimes).

5. What's one talent/skill you don't have but always wanted?

I've always wanted to draw as well as Norman Rockwell.


Flourish

» Thursday, June 12, 2003
A Syrupy Personality?

Might I carry you back briefly 40 years, when two of my most favorite things in the world were drinks? One was an all-year-'round favorite, coffee milk (the RI state drink), made by generously glopping a spoonful or two of Eclipse coffee syrup--think Hershey's syrup, only coffee-flavored--in a glass of milk). More summery was a liberal application of Eclipse lemon-lime syrup to a glass of cold water to make a sweet-sour citrus concoction.

Coffee syrup still exists back in the "Ocean State," although the big brick Eclipse plant on Route 2 has long since gone to dust like the Cranston Drive-in it was next to and Autocrat Coffee makes both Autocrat and Eclipse brands. But the fruit-flavored syrups disappeared before I was even out of junior high school.

Luckily there was a replacement: a brand called Zarex (with a zebra mascot) came out of nowhere and filled the field for a time. Then it too was gone.

Now, granted, if you wanted a fruit-flavored drink there were always the powdered alternatives--Kool-Aid, Wyler's, and the immensely watered-down Crystal Light. A nice strong lemon-lime can be made with the Kool-Aid packet if the sugar is cut down a quarter and if that two quarts of water is shorted about a quarter of a cup. However, the rub is that you must make that almost two quarts and have the container sitting in the fridge, vying for space. If you don't drink much of anything else, no problem. However, when it contends with three gallons of milk, some orange juice, and an ice-water bottle, there tends to be a bit of a bottleneck [pun intended]. And face it, sometimes you just lose taste for it for a while, so the container sits in the fridge gathering black gunk around the container mouth and looking sorrier and sorrier. The syrup bottle may cost more, but you can have the drink whenever you wish and not overcrowd the fridge with a jug you may or may not use.

So imagine my surprise when, after a fruitless [pun also intended] search for syrups for years, we came upon last Sunday, in of all places Big Lots the closeout store, bottles of flavored syrup from a DaVinci Gourmet company. Which has a website.

Which has both lemon and lime syrups among a horde of others including kiwi, amaretto, watermelon, coffee, gingerbread, and 40 other flavors. So now I'm cogitating on ordering a bottle of the lime.

Incidentally, davincigourmet.com has a cute little "Flavorscope" gadget that "analyzes" your personality if you plug in your favorite drink mixed with your favorite syrup. Unfortuately they do not have "milk" in the drink category so my personality analysis has gone off a bit sideways. I tried it first with cappucino flavored with coffee:

You are a well-balanced person, and move easily between groups of friends, work, and family. Your advice and guidance are valued, and your ability to keep a level head is an inspiration to many, including a few secret admirers.

You are thoughtful and thorough, and can be counted on to always come through in a pinch. You take great satisfaction in a job well done.


Hm. Maybe the second paragraph...providing the job is interesting enough. But "well-balanced" and "a level head." Hmn. We're talking about my mother here, not me.

Since it has a milk base, I tried hot chocolate flavored with coffee syrup instead:

You like to sail on calm waters, and have the good sense to stay out of the way of approaching storms, whether in the workplace or family life. You have great inner strength, and value the simple joys in life.

You are thoughtful and thorough, and can be counted on to always come through in a pinch. You take great satisfaction in a job well done.


Okay, much closer. But I wish they had a nice straight glass of milk to judge from. The chocolate does muddy the waters... :-)



Flourish

Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Quoth- Do you use quotations much? ..at all? What is your favorite quote? ...and why, pray tell?

If a quote fits the situation, sure, I'd use one. On the other hand, I'm not like Lord Peter Wimsey, who seemed to have a quote memorized for every occasion. :-) My favorite quote: "Live, live, live! Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death!" (Mame Dennis in Auntie Mame) Perhaps because I wish I could live it.

Twosome: the Raven- The symbol of the raven has a lot of mythology and superstition attached. How are you in this area? Do you avoid ladders with black cats perched on them on Friday the thirteenth? ...or do you just toss a pinch of salt over your shoulder and move along about your business? Hmmm?

Oh, I've been known to knock wood or toss a few grains of salt. However, if I must believe in all those things, I will be very unlucky, because I happen to love black cats! (One of my favorite cats of all time was a longhair black cat named Zipper who belonged to my best friend. When she came into heat she fell in love with my Hush Puppies. :-) It was quite a spectacle.)

Threesome: Nevermore- ...and the softball of the week: What is it that you've tried that is on the "Nevermore" list? ...and do people even dare to bring it up around you?

Nobody's asked...but--roller skating! After falling and hairline fracturing an elbow, I would say so. "Barf rides" like roller coasters are out, too.


Flourish

It's Truly a Mystery

In these old children's books I've been reading, the mystery angle is often very thin: The Outdoor Girls, in particular, have such transparent plots one can almost see through the pages. However, I'm in the midst of a real corker right now: The Campfire Girls Go Motoring : or, Along The Road That Leads The Way (a secondary title was almost de rigeur in those days) by Hildegarde Frey. The girls of the title are not pre-pubescent, but in their very late teens, of driving age, and accompanied by a "den mother" (or whatever the elder member of a Campfire Girl troop is called) who doesn't seem much older than they are. Not only does the book lack the obligatory introductory scene so common in these books where each of the girls is introduced and described according to looks and interests (i.e. the plump blond one, the bookish redhead, etc.), but, save for Gladys, none of the girls is known by her real name, only by her "Indian" moniker (although we find out later "Nyoda" is their leader, Miss Elizabeth Kent). Not only that, but the mystery itself, involving the two motoring groups (four girls in each car) getting separated right from the beginning, car breakdowns, fires, mysterious pursuers, not one but two runaway young women, torrential rainstorms, lodging problems and heaven knows what else, is actually complicated and keeping me guessing even halfway into the narrative. Plus, having been written circa 1920, it's a great portrait of car travel in those days: bad roads, unusual lodging, tentative communication, weather difficulties. Altogether a good read.


Flourish

» Tuesday, June 10, 2003
Sigh. It's that time of the year again.

Used to be it was something you looked forward to: smells of fresh grass and trees and flowers, butterflies and honeybees whisking about, slapping the occasional fly off the wall, watermelon and cherries, grapes and cantaloupe.

Now all it is is bad air and noxious smells, the one that comes off the freeway too early on an already hot morning, the roasting smell of the sidewalk leading into buildings throwing off yet more heat, brown air that makes your throat tickle, the ceaseless odor of diesel trucks and busses and cars that somehow passed inspection, the errant mosquito zeroing in on you the moment you open the door to outside, wasps and more wasps buzzing the front porch...

God, I hate summer.


Flourish

» Friday, June 06, 2003
Friday Five

Hmmm. More thoughtful questions.

1. How many times have you truly been in love?

Twice.

2. What was/is so great about the person you love(d) the most?

His incredible ability to put up with me. {grin}

3. What qualities should a significant other have?

Patience. Not perfection but a basically good heart. Truthfulness, kindness, gentleness.

Oh, and it helps if he cooks, too. LOL.

4. Have you ever broken someone's heart?

I don't know.

5. If there was one thing you could teach people about love, what would it be?

Just one? Don't let the media snowball you; looks don't matter. If you look for absolute perfection, you're gonna be waiting a long time. And moonlight and roses are nice, but it's when they take care of you when you're sick and put up with your idiosyncracies that it really counts...


Flourish

» Thursday, June 05, 2003
Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Rice- Okay, what's the preference at your place at dinner time, rice or potatoes? ...or something else? Hmmm?

I have to choose? I love rice, especially in chicken soup, but Yukon Gold potatoes are fine, too. At restaurants I usually stick with the baked potato. Restaurants most often offer a rice pilaf which I find too greasy.

Twosome: Krispies- ...and how about breakfast? If you're a cereal person, what is your favorite? ...or is there something else you'd prefer to start your day with?

The thing I prefer to start my day with is a later rising time. Barring that, the breakfast buffet at Golden Corral. I usually have AlphaBits at work. But my favorite cereal is Special K...

Threesome: Treats- Has anyone not seen "Finding Nemo"? What treat did you have to buy (or slip in) for it to be a "Theatre Experience"?

I haven't seen Nemo. I've never been much interested in fish. Maybe it was going to the stinky fish market every Friday as a kid and having to eat the horrible stuff later in the day. For it to be a "Theatre Experience" there must be popcorn--even if it does make me sick if I don't take it with a Pepto Bismol chaser. SnowCaps are cool, too.

Another interesting question on the site (relating to my answer for #2):

Sleep: How many hours a night do you get? Aim for? Is it undisturbed, and if not, what disturbs your slumber? Have you ever suffered from insomnia, and what helps you when it arrives? What about the other parts of "sleep"...room temperature, blankets, jammies (or lack of), and bedtimes versus wake up times...

Ah, sleep, the question of the day. Mom asks, "Why don't you go to bed earlier?" Sigh. Because I'm simply not sleepy before eleven o'clock. She ought to know; I was the baby that would have napped all day and played all night. I've been a night owl forever; I'd be totally comfortable with a bedtime of one a.m. and a wake-up hour of nine a.m. My big problem is that I get my best, soundest sleep between six and eight a.m. Guess when I have to get up during the week. Getting up later, which I did for one horrible summer, is not an option: after seven the traffic gets even more horrendous than it is at 6:30. So during the week I'm a grumpy goof with an average of about five hours sleep. I'm attempting to keep myself better hydrated these days, so the night usually has one bathroom break. Then there are the thunderstorms, the summer's inevitable tornado siren, and, a perennial "favorite," the dog barking frantically at the feral cats mating and fighting in the back yard. (And the occasional power failure where the quiet actually awakens me: I'm used to sleeping to the lullaby of the ceiling fan, air purifier, and James' breathy C-PAP machine.)

I like to sleep "covered up" both summer and winter, so a cool bedroom is a must. This explains why A/C is so desirable (add to the fact we're on the second floor of a house under an attic without insulation). The house is at 80 degrees all day in the summer, but a cool 70 at night. In the winter we keep the vents closed upstairs except in the bathrooms; it's usually just right from the heat that seeps up from downstairs. I wear flannel in the winter, and skin in the summer.


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» Tuesday, June 03, 2003
From the news this morning: McDonald's has sued one of Italy's top food critics for raking its restaurants over the coals, but the critic says he has no intention of going back on saying its burgers taste of rubber and its fries of cardboard.

How can you sue someone for telling the truth? [grin]


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» Monday, June 02, 2003
And in our newest installment of "book illustrators who don't read the story"...

Check out this photo.

Way back at the turn of the last century, Margaret Sidney (the pen name of Harriet Lothrop), wrote a series of 12 novels about the Pepper family, the initially fatherless brood struggling to survive with "Mamsie" doing sewing for various merchants in town and the eldest, Ben, as a chore boy for one of the locals. They all live a Spartan but ultimately joyous life in Badgertown: Mother Pepper, Ben, Polly, Joel, David, and the adorably cute Phronsie. Then one day life changes for them when they befriend Jasper King, a rich boy--but they always remain the uncomplicated, loveable Peppers.

Except in this edition, count the kids on the cover.

Who's that other little blond girl in the lower lefthand corner? The picture is quite obviously from the Peppers' pre-King years, the children on the doorstep of their beloved Little Brown House. The Pepper children have no playmates their age in Badgertown, which seems to be solely populated with older people of their social set. So who's the blonde? Did somehow in this edition Phronsie developed an evil twin? (And Lord knows Phronsie could use one... [grin]) Also, all three of the boys look younger than the responsible Polly at center. Yet Ben is two years older than she is and has several inches on her.






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