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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» Saturday, July 31, 2010
Saturday in the Living Room With Fids
At this moment, it's quite gloomy out, thunder rumbling and booming overhead (which means the dog is figuratively glued to my side). I'm not surprised it's brewed up a storm out there, because when I first heard the thunder, I went outside to refill the bird feeders, and there is not a breath of air; it's like stepping into a pizza oven fired all the way up to 100°F (that's with the heat index). The birds are used enough to me that the tiny brown-headed nuthatches and the chickadees will come back to the feeder if I stand very still near the back door (a distance of about ten feet), but I couldn't stay out there more than five minutes trying to breathe that awful air.

Since James not only had to work today, but got the rotten shift (noon to nine), we decided we would go to the Farmer's Market and have breakfast at one of the small places that open on Saturday mornings for the market. It was almost 80 already when we left the house at 8:40, but the sun wasn't too strong. I just clapped on my trusty "straw" hat and James his boonie cap before we left.

They were having a "Christmas in July" celebration on the Square today, so the parking spaces were at a premium, but we did pull in to one relatively close. There was an elderly man standing at the rear of the vehicle next to us, in overalls, a work shirt, and wearing one of those John Deere-type square caps, looking the very image of a country farmer. He grinned as we got out and said "I saved this one just for you," and we laughed. He then added that back in the old days, the area would have been filled with mules from the farmers coming into town on Saturday. They used to park them on the square, he told us, and they were such a nuisance that "old man Glover" (the gentleman that the park in the center of the square is named for) finally came out and told the farmers if they didn't park elsewhere he'd pull up every tree in the square so they wouldn't tie up to them. Around here that wasn't so long ago; farmers came into small Southern towns on Saturday via mule and wagon well into the 1940s and 1950s.

We wandered down the length of the market, buying two huge cucumbers, James some boiled peanuts, and a huge tomato, and then turned into the next aisle and decided to eat at the North Park Bistro. We chose a table next to the building for its shadyness, and it pretty much remained that way except for a small portion of sun, and watched the world go by. Much fun watching the dogs: saw many poodle and poodle crosses, a Scottie, a Westie, a huge St. Bernard puppy, several corgis, a bold Australian shepherd, a striking harlequin Great Dane, a dog that looked like a cross between some type of hunting hound and a Dalmatian, and of course the usual rescue greyhounds.

Breakfast was good (I had a whole-wheat waffle with strawberries on it and James had some type of Southwestern crepe with fruit on the side) but it took ages for James to get his because the order was wrong. There was a couple not closely watching their pair of active boys, and the smaller one (maybe age four?) ran in to the restaurant and then we heard a crash. We had our backs to the doorway, so I'm not sure if the little boy caused it or it just happened at the same time, but an older lady who had been sitting at the counter inside on a tall wrought-iron chair was on the ground as one of the welds of the chair supports had broken. The little boy could have bumped into it, I suppose. The woman appeared to be okay.

While we were waiting for our meal, James bought more garlic dog biscuits for Wil, and I got a baguette, and then when we had finished we picked up some more goat cheese. As we were walking to the car, the inevitable: a train was approaching. We stood in the shade of the buildings and watched the different cars go by—closed and open boxcars, hopper cars, tanker cars. It had that hot, metallic scent that brought me back to the bowels of the old Union Station in Providence, or Penn Station in New York, or even the underground tunnels of the T in Boston.

There was just enough time to put up things before James had to pack his lunch, grab his things, and go off to work. Usually I wander off to Michaels or JoAnn when he spends a weekend day at work, but I'd already spent too much from this paycheck (the mortgage payment, and some perfect birthday/Christmas gifts found in various catalogs; the last of them came today in the mail) and didn't want to go out in the Fry Daddy atmosphere. So I put on cool things, and did various activities, like vacuum just a little (something is caught in the vacuum and after a few minutes there is a burning smell; but the stupid thing is so difficult to dismantle I just quit vacuuming), wash the kitchen floor, and logged on briefly to work to forward a dozen 653s to the Small Business office and write a stern letter to a company that submitted three more invoices than they should have. Also watched most of a show on the RFD channel called R5Sons, about the family that runs the Rainy Pass Lodge in Alaska along the Iditirod Trail. The episode took place during the race, in fact. Afterward I started watching Change Your Brain, Change Your Life on one of the PBS channels, but turned it off when the thunder began.

Speaking of watching television, the TV was fixed with little fanfare. A slight man appeared on our doorstep yesterday morning, noted the clicks, then opened the back of the television—you should have seen Schuyler crane her neck at him, trying to figure out what was going on—to reveal something that looked like the motherboard on a computer. It actually took the guy longer to put the back of the television back on than to fix the problem, which was a broken diode. In thirty minutes he was gone and Schuyler quit looking grumpy.

To be frank, I didn't miss the thing much. We watched the news on the computer, and didn't even care to drag the little television from the spare room to watch Jeopardy, although I did miss another go at Pie in the Sky. I've been too busy reading Christopher Plummer's book In Spite of Myself.

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» Wednesday, July 28, 2010
The Deadly "Click"
Usually when we are watching the local stations, we won't turn on the satellite box on, using the antenna instead. Our set of rabbit ears has incurred at least one hard fall, so doesn't work as well as it used to, and I've never seen another set like it at Radio Shack. So on Sunday the news report was fading in and out, replaced often with "weak signal strength" messages.

What was odd about this was that several times, when the message came up, the television turned itself off and then on again. Odd.

Last night when the 10 p.m. news was over, I turned off the satellite box and then the television, which had worked flawlessly since Sunday. The screen went black, followed by a barrage of quick "clicks" that after about 30 seconds, degenerated into a "click"-"click"-"click"...just like a television set trying to turn itself off and on.

We finally had to pull out the plug to get it to quit, waited a few minutes, then plugged it in again. "Click"-"click"-"click"...well, you get the picture. Unplugged again, went to bed.

This morning I plugged it in again, only to be greeted with a chorus of clicks. I knew we had bought an extended warranty for the beast, despite Clark Howard's insistence that they are not worth it, but wasn't sure how long it lasted, so I went digging into the secretary next to Schuyler's cage for the paperwork.

Gloriosky, it was for three years, ending next March.

I pressed a complicated series of buttons to reach an Spanish-accented gentleman who took down all my info, then told me he couldn't put in the call for service right away because his computer was being updated. In the middle of the work day? Brilliant. He said he would put the order in manually and someone would call me back; I still called back early in the afternoon to talk to a young woman who made an appointment for Friday.

So a very disappointed Schuyler had to do without her "teevee" and settled for listening to my "This Week in Tech" and "Tech Guy" podcasts as I dug my way through a pile of thirty-eight purchase orders that needed new quotes, or new justifications, or special forms, or advertisement, a task I still hadn't finished when five o'clock rolled around.

Plus I've got something else going on; having a tussle with myself...but I have to resolve it before I can talk about it.

Anyway, looks like our new neighbors have moved in; they have three dogs, so we've heard. We watched the news on the computer—I love live streaming video—and then I put on Episode 2 of the newest season of History Detectives (since neither of the Georgia PBS stations seem to be showing it). Fascinating ep which included an authentic Civil War relic, and a Theremin made by its creator, who turned out to be a spy for Soviet Russia!

Following that I put on the Masterpiece special with David Suchet traveling on the Orient Express. How lovely! What glamour and luxury; puts today's "luxe" to shame. Plus some stunning scenery, especially in Austria and then again in Venice.

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» Sunday, July 25, 2010
Easy Bake Oven
Too hot, too hot, too hot. Seven people collapsed at a tennis championship game.

We went to BJs early for a few things, then to Kroger. It was quite hot, but we didn't want to stay inside all day.

What we did was go up to the BJs in Woodstock, listening to "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me" up and back. We had a coupon for $10 off one of four Disney films, several of which BJs already had on sale, so we ended up getting Finding Nemo for $4 (the BJs on the East-West Connector was out of Nemo, so we had to go find him <g>). Then James stopped for gas at the BJs station. I swear, it was like an Easy Bake oven, even in the shade. Not a breeze, no breath of air at all.

This convinced both of us to get the hell home. Watched Monday's Tonight Show ("Headlines" and Don Rickles), the last Futurama, Stossel, and finally the next four episodes of Doctor Who after "Amy's Choice." I see they brought the Silurians back without calling 'em Silurians. LOL. Now we have only the two-part season finale to watch.

Some species are managing in the heat: I glanced out the window at one point to see two mourning doves engrossed in courtship on the deck rail. He had his throat puffed, showing off the iridescent feathers of his neck, and the hen dove must have been impressed, since the affair preceded apace. Maybe we'll see some squabs in the future?

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» Saturday, July 24, 2010
Trapped By Summer
A frustrating time of year. I know in places where they have a lot of snow people get a shut-in feeling. I feel like that in the summer, trapped in buildings with canned air because it's the only way not to feel like I can't breath and that my heart is about to hammer its way out of my chest.

Neither of us could tolerate the idea of wandering around the Farmer's Market in 80+ degrees. We slept late instead, and refilled the birdseed container, and James cleaned the kitchen while I swept the deck and replaced the string of C-9 lights that supplies illumination to the back yard. Had to patch the extension cord with electrical tape because of That Damn Squirrel.

It was about 92° out, but there was a fairly good breeze. I was hot, but I didn't feel all that bad as I worked, and it didn't take that long (less than a half hour). Whew...when I came inside though...lightheaded time. Swilled some water and turned the ceiling fan up to "afterburner," and eventually felt better.

James went to his club meeting. I hitched up the laptop to the television, planning to watch one of the Petherbridge Lord Peter Wimsey stories on Netflix's "Watch Instantly" feature, only to find they aren't available instantly anymore. Botheration. So I watched North Station over to see how it looked on a big screen, a cool subject on a blazing hot day. Jean-Claude Lord certainly created an appealing, colorful confection of Christmas in the decoration of North Station and of the North Pole complex, but the story certainly is a strange one, with Santa suffering from depression and trying to write a rock song about believing in miracles, while elves are good people whose last breaths have been saved by a sponsor, and the reindeer are prisoners who still believe in Santa Claus, so they have been rescued from their prisons.

We had dinner at Shane's barbecue and went to the Borders at Town Center, where I got the new Charles Finch mystery. Ironically, got home to find a Borders survey in my e-mail box. I know Borders is not doing well fiscally (certainly I'm trying to do my best to keep them in business!), but it looks like they are thinking about diversifying, like selling aprons with cookbooks and globes with travel books and rubbish like that. Man, this wasn't a survey, it was an ordeal. They were asking weird things like if you went to bookstores to feel smarter than other people, or more sophisticated. Say what?

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» Friday, July 23, 2010
Sizzle Factor
Not much to write this week, unless you want to hear endless purchase order stories (and I do mean endless—there are eighty of them now; a prodigious family!). When I finish work I collapse on the sofa with a book. Don't even want to watch television; we've had the second disk of Pie in the Sky for a week and just watched it tonight. (Really tense final episode of the disk!)

No use to go outside for fresh air; there is none. Right now it's still 83°F out, no breeze, high humidity. It's hard to breathe because the air is just smothering.

The heat was the reason I went out early this morning (besides the fact that I needed to be back by 2 p.m. to let the exterminator in the back yard). JoAnn was having a "Coupon Commotion," so I went there after first stopping at Hobby Lobby. Wandered happily through the latter's aisles of autumn garlands, plates, picks, and other decorations, and aisles of Christmas wreaths, ornaments, garlands, picks...sigh. A wonderful, welcome sign that there is something better after the sheer misery of summer and end-of-fiscal-year spending. I did find a ceramic bowl with an apple/olive pattern on clearance, only $1.67 with a couple of chips out of the finish. When I got home I touched it up with my gloss paint. It will be nice for wrapped goodies or cookies at a game night.

Didn't buy anything expensive at JoAnn, mostly fall and Christmas bits for making cards/papercraft. Did find an edge punch that does leaves and acorns! (Oddly, neither of the two leaves is an oak leaf.) Also found another little ceramic sheep for the front porch.

Final stop was at Borders, with a yummy 40 percent off coupon. Got The Little Ice Age.

Came home through Kennesaw National Battlefield Park; it's been a long time since we could do that: they've been fixing one bridge in the park and another on Kennesaw Avenue leading from the park into downtown Marietta. There was no one in the park. Usually there are stay-at-home moms and dads walking or picnicking with their kids, or people jogging...today, nothing. All kept in by the heat.

This was about quarter to one. Came home intending to have a bite to eat and wash the kitchen floor. Instead I remembered that my cousin Donna had asked if I had any photos of her dad. I sat down on the floor with the boxes of photos salvaged from my mom's house and the next thing I knew I'd been traveling in time literally as well as figuratively and it was 2:30!

Got up just in time for the exterminator to show up. Went outside to open the gate for him, and also asked him to spray in the garage because this morning I'd found a spider industriously spinning a web between Twilight's rear bumper and the concrete floor. I backed the car out and while he was still spraying around the house, I swept out the garage. I was out there probably around 20 minutes and came in feeling wretchedly nauseated from the heat, with a headache coming on. By five the headache was so bad I finally took three ibuprofin and retreated to the bedroom until James got home.

At least I was the guy's last call of the day, and he was looking forward to vacation next week. Of course he's going to Orlando; not sure how much of it he will enjoy!

We had supper at Folks, dessert at Bruster's, then came home to watch Pie in the Sky. I am reading Christopher Plummer's autobiography, which is hilarious.

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» Sunday, July 18, 2010
Chillin' on the Inside, Humid Otherwise
After a week of frantic work, I was ready to chill out this weekend, and we did. Didn't even go to the farmer's market on Saturday morning, since we had purchased so many veggies last week we still had leftovers. Instead we slept in, then went out to Lithonia. We had an e-mail that the Borders at Stonecrest Mall was having a tent sale, so we went to see if they had any goodies. I was actually hoping for games or other things, and on that we struck out, but we did find four gifts, and I discovered a book called The Parrot Who Thought She Was a Dog, and also picked up Christopher Plummer's autobiography. How can you resist a book that begins "I was brought up by a dog"?

We came home via downtown, which was almost a mistake, as there were three accidents in a row on the connector, but they were minimally intrusive (save for the gawpers) in the right breakdown lane, and thankfully no one was hurt. We arrived back in Cobb County in time for a steamy rain as we stopped to pick up something, and then went to the hobby shop. I was mostly reading Lillian Gilbreth's biography, but I perked when three of the regulars started discussing their type of insulin and the doses, and what was the best thing to drink if you needed sugar quickly. Remember how we laughed at our parents, standing around talking with their friends about their ailments and their prescriptions?

When we were finished there, we treated ourselves to dessert first (Bruster's) and then asked each other if there was anything else we wanted to do. It was already getting late (after four), so we just went by Dragon and picked up Chinese for supper and made Willow's night by staying in with her. Watched "the crazy lady" (my mom's description of Keeping Up Appearances) and then it was time for chat. Especially waiting for Jen to come on to tell us all about her sister Meg's wedding!

Tried not to sleep in too late this morning, because it makes sleeping at night difficult. Shopping was much better this morning: we went to BJs for Kleenex and granola bars, then by Publix for the twofers (more Ranier cherries!), and then Kroger. Came home for a bit, had a small lunch, then went to the International Farmer's Market for more sesame oil. I was flabbergasted to walk in and find "white cherries" (Raniers) for $2—much less than we'd found them at a buy-one, get-one price. Plus they had green grapes for 69¢/pound. Zowee! We need to start doing our fruit shopping here.

Stopped at Borders to walk around and pick up the July British Country Living; the new Shop Smart was out as well. Then came home and listened to "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me," tidied up some things, read the paper.

James made something different tonight. We picked up a small package of ground pork at Kroger. He browned it, then poured the fat off and rinsed it, then cooked it with a package of Knorr's Italian Sides, a tomato parmesan with small ziti, and some mushrooms. It was quite yummy and there was enough for a lunch each left over.

Still chillin'. Back to those 60+ POs tomorrow.

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» Friday, July 16, 2010
Jes' Keep Rollin' Along
Trying to pile up completed purchase orders. I finished at least a dozen in three days; it might be more (and can complete the one sitting on my desk now that I have the waiver that goes with it). Could have done two others except I realized I didn't have a quotation for one and the other wasn't in ICE. I've had it put in today, so it should be there Monday.

This sounds like a great deal, but there are still 60+ awaiting, half of which I haven't even looked at aside from a cursory glance at the name and thinking "this is sole source, this can be competed," and the dreaded "what the hell is this one all about?"

Transferred a wad of music onto my Droid yesterday and now have George Winston, David Huntsinger, and the scores to Lassie (the '90s one) and Little Women (ditto) keeping company with Rupert Holmes and Gaelic Storm. Need to transfer a little John Denver, too. Listening to Rupert most of the day. Perked me up a bit, except in mid-afternoon, when I went outside in the swelter a total of ten minutes to open and then close the gate for Alex and very soon had to hurry for the bathroom. Wretched heat. I was still feeling nauseated when James got out, so I told him to pick something up for himself and I had the rest of the rice with chicken broth.

We didn't care to go anywhere later on, so I gave Wil a bath, trimmed the fur around her feet, and James gave her a good brushing. She is majorly fluffed now.

Nice bunch of twofers at Publix this week, especially compared to last. They have Ranier cherries on twofer again, and I intend to buy more, even if they are expensive. I have been highly disappointed in the Bing cherries for the past few years; in fact since Harry's took away the opportunity to pick your own out. The ones pre-packed in the plastic bags at the supermarket and at Harry's now are horrible; half are sour and even the nice firm dark ones have a bad taste sometimes. Cherries are my favorite fruit and I want to enjoy them while they are out.

::sigh:: Harry's was so much better when it was scruffy like the DeKalb Farmer's Market and not all upscale like it is now, having been taken over by Whole Foods. You can still get some reasonable stuff, but there in corners are overpriced cosmetics, soaps, and other fripperies. It's been Yuppified into disappointment.

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» Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Primordial Swamp
My God—just went out to refill the bird feeders before full dark and commando groups of mosquitoes begin circling the deck. It's 80°F out there, at 9:15 p.m. and the air is warm and heavy with moisture (and it didn't even rain today). The nice breeze that was there earlier is gone. The cicadas and some other creatures are vying for the honor of making the most noise, loud even against the voices from the trailer park behind us. Reminds me of the summer my mom died; it rained every day, sometimes for not more than fifteen minutes, but long enough to make you easily able to imagine the stories you learned in science class of dinosaurs and giant insects lumbering around amongst the huge ferns of the swamps, with that fetid hot mud/composting vegetation scent in the air.

Overwhelmed, inundated, smothering in work. Lord knows it's as hard as slogging through the primordial ooze. I could use a machete against the purchase orders just as well as against the rapidly growing plants at the very rear of the property. Rescued by Leo LaPorte, Doctor Who podcasts, and (in desperation) Christmas music.

New Rick Sebak special just finished: Breakfast Special. I do think I like it better when he visits more places, and I don't usually like the "quick cut" style of narration these days. I'd love to eat at the New York place at the sugarbush that's only open two months a year (during sugaring off season, of course). Real maple syrup and buckwheat pancakes. Yum.

(Must get James to make buckwheat pancakes for Jen...)

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» Tuesday, July 13, 2010
"We Like Windows XP"
...or can't afford to upgrade everyone in the business to 7, presumably. 74 percent of businesses stil use WinXP.

Microsoft Extends Windows XP Downgrade Rights

I hope this means they'll keep issuing security updates for XP as well. Win7 has a great rep, but I'm perfectly happy with XP.

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» Sunday, July 11, 2010
Peace and Almost Quiet
A quiet weekend here at Chez Young (well, except for the visit to Kroger this morning, which I don't want to talk about...not Kroger's fault, ours). We went to the Hallmark Ornament premiere yesterday, out at Betsy's Hallmark at Merchant's Walk. Got their lovely Father Christmas and a few others, and a Great Pumpkin ornament: "I got a rock." My favorite scene; I couldn't resist! Also found some pretty gifts. James bought three different ornaments for his airplane tree, and also the new Enterprise.

Today we did the usual grocery shopping, then grabbed a bite at Wendy's and went to Cumberland Mall to walk around. It's pretty much a dead loss as a real mall anymore; it doesn't even have one bookstore, or anything like an FYE, and places like Kirklands or Yankee Candle or Brookstone, or any kind of housewares place. Game Stop is still there, the Radio Shack, a Bath and Body Works, a GNC, a Hallmark and an American Greetings, a couple of eyeglass places, and a Spencer Gifts, but everything else is clothing, shoes or jewelry. Bore.

Found a nice bargain at American Greetings: they had many things on sale, including Christmas cards and gift tags. These were 90 percent off. I got a lovely set of Christmas cards, and also about 260 tags for only $1.10.

Any money I saved had to be invested in hideously overpriced soy isoflavones at GNC, since I can't find them anywhere else anymore.

Had some good video watching the past two nights. Last night we watched a new (to us) British mystery series that we got from Netflix, Pie in the Sky from the 1990s. This stars Richard Griffiths, now notorious for being Uncle Vernon in the Harry Potter films, as Henry Crabbe, a 25-year police veteran who is seven weeks away from retirement, a gourmet who is looking forward to opening his own restaurant (the "Pie in the Sky" of the title). However, on a case involving a highly-sought criminal, someone tips the man off and he gets away. Later Crabbe's officious boss, Fisher (a right arsehole), whose only goal in life seems to be to do things that are "politically" right to keep him in the correct circles (this appears to be a motif of the series), blackmails Crabbe into working "occasionally" as a consultant or he will be prosecuted for taking a bribe. So the stories are about Crabbe's juggling of the running of the restaurant along with criminal investigations he is dragged into.

Griffiths is charming as the curmudgeonly Crabbe, whose traditional cooking—he makes a mean steak-and-kidney pie—charms more than one "savage beast." As a humorous counterpoint, Crabbe's wife Margaret, an accountant, not only has no interest in food, but she loves crisps and junk food. His assistant and ally in the police department is detective sergeant Cambridge, who both admires and is bemused by him.

We really enjoyed this and are looking forward to more episodes.

Tonight we didn't see anything of interest on and I just put on the I Love Lucy marathon which Hallmark Channel was broadcasting; at this point they were showing the European episodes. They still make me laugh.

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» Friday, July 09, 2010
I Love It When an Errand Comes Together
I wanted out of the house and back in before noon and the sun turned up its fryer setting to "incinerate." Oatmeal and yogurt delayed me a bit, and by the time I got outside at 9:30, the air already felt like those hot towels they throw on your face at old-fashioned barber shops.

I was on a mission: I needed new scuffs. (I guess that's what you call them—slip-ons, terry cloth things, open toes...) Needed them: I looked the soles of my scuffs yesterday and my toes were breaking through the soles. I've been looking for new ones for quite awhile, but Dollar General doesn't seem to carry them anymore—they only have those awful flip-flops (gah...I hate flip-flops; how can you put that rubber junk between your toes...gives me blisters, too)—and I hadn't seen any in WalMart at my size. Having small feet is a PITA sometimes.

I did stop at the new Dollar General, but they still didn't have any.

So I went to WallyWorld, and not only did they have some, but they were in blue instead of pink (thankfully). I bought two.

Walked through the Dollar Tree next door, and found one or two things that would be useful, including clips to hold power cords, then went to CVS looking for more barrettes. I love the ones at CVS, but the plastic on them breaks easily. I struck out there, but had more luck at Walgreen's. I was looking for more pop-up hampers. You can get pop-up hampers almost everywhere, but the ones they sell at Walgreens are sturdier and have reinforced handles. We're pretty hard on our laundry hampers, and the ones we have now are four years old and the wires are starting to burst from the covering material. I've looked for them before, but always come up empty.

Today I found three!

Made it home before noon and tried out the scuffs. These are Dearfoams and I read some really bad reviews of them. Seem fine to me, except for the Dearfoam logo stitched in the heel. Odd they would put something there that rubs your feet so uncomfortably.

Spending the afternoon dubbing off the last of this season's Castle episodes, and changing and washing the bedclothes.

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» Thursday, July 08, 2010
New Rick Sebak Special on PBS!
Airing next week (here, anyway). It's called A Breakfast Special. Love these things!

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Music of My Childhood`
Other kids grew up with "The Wheels on the Bus," "Old McDonald's Farm," etc.

We Italian kids listened to this:

Pepino the Italian Mouse

Pepino's Friend Pasquale

What Did Washington Say When He Crossed the Delaware?

Please, Mr. Columbus

"Washington" is one of my all-time favorite songs. By the way, what George is saying in Italian is "I'm cold, I'm hungry, I'm cold, I have no clean underwear." LOL.

I read a website once that said Lou Monte's songs were insulting to Italians. My Italian family didn't think so! (Huh! The Sopranos is still so acclaimed—and that's not insulting to Italians? Gimme a break...)

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I So Want My FroYo
Android 2.2 Review: A Deep, Delicious Dive Into Froyo

And no calories! :-)

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» Tuesday, July 06, 2010
DroidNeep
A little birdie carrying a rumor says FroYo starting 7/13...we'll see. :-)

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» Monday, July 05, 2010
The Day After
Spent the morning grocery shopping; spent the afternoon and up until now working on updating some web pages. May have an hour or two to read.

James starts his new shift tomorrow: it's not really bad, and he can probably use the 45 minutes of extra sleep, but getting out when he does will put him smack on Spring Road when it's a parking lot. There's no alternate route; all the other ways home are just as bad.

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» Sunday, July 04, 2010
Sparkle, Crackle and POP!
So we did watch 1776. I was trying to watch the background characters this time, as they reacted to the main players. Do notice Jack DeMave (Bob Erickson on Lassie) quite a bit as one of the members of the South Carolina (or maybe it's North Carolina) contingent. Had sausage for supper along with mushroom rice, ice cream cups for dessert, and then it was time for A Capitol Fourth. Loved that as they showed the fireworks over the Washington Monument that you could see all sorts of other fireworks shows going on in the distance; the horizon was lined with colorful explosions.

When that was over James went into the garage and got out the fireworks, opening the garage door and staging them on the gate of the truck. I turned the hose on and wet down the grass, then left it out. James brought out the bucket with the sand and the tubes in it for shooting off the Roman candles. This was fun; we had some duds, and a couple we didn't do more than one of: one that launched itself in the air and spun, and one that let out a prolonged, LOUD squeal. (If you heard that one, apologies!) Some kids came by to watch, and the folks in both cul de sacs also had fireworks. Someone behind the trees at the back of the complex had ones that shot almost over the trees.

We sparkled and popped and whooshed and whistled and scattered stardust for about 90 minutes, then rinsed the remains down with cold water and tossed it out, coming inside to play back the Boston Pops concert—or all of it we see on CBS, which is the end of the "1812 Overture," a couple of performances by Toby Keith (including "American Soldier"), the singalong (with pans of the crowd—Jen's gonna look super in uniform!), and finally a wonderful whopper of a fireworks display. CBS gets a tad better every year, with some nice aerial shots. They only got sloppy at the end, showing faces. They had some fireworks this year that looked like layered flowers; James thought they looked like anemones. Some unusual colors this year, including a dusty green and a fluorescent one as well, and a bright, bright crimson.

Good show!!!

Checked out the front to make sure everything was okay, then shut off a bunch of lights and went out on the deck with my phone and called up Google Sky maps. The Big Dipper was right over the right roofline of the house, and I identified Arcturus, Scorpio, and very high over my head, Vega.

Now we are about to watch the replay of the Lenox Square celebration and fireworks.

Oh, and I finished my shelves for the spare room.

[Later: Very poor coverage on Channel 2 of the Lenox Square fireworks. The ground coverage was often blurry or too close up, the far shots were too distant. Disappointing.]

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On, D*amn*d Shelves...
...in Autumn Hollow.

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Hazy Lazy Day
Up much too late last night, first bantering back and forth on chat, discussing the Entertainment Weekly article that talks about "23 TV Shows We Want on DVD"—and mentions Remember WENN! (My gosh, they have taste!) I had no idea neither LA Law or China Beach weren't yet on DVD. They were both such big shows in their time.

I actually signed off chat earlier, but I had my Best of Dave Allen DVD on and couldn't resist watching it until the end. Miss Dave Allen. Talk about something I'd like on DVD: all of Dave Allen at Large. Not to mention my usual requests: He and She, My World and Welcome to It, Ellery Queen (ah...Amazon.com finally has a cover, and a release date...ouch on the price...supposedly is remastered with a special booklet—but widescreen? I don't think so unless they've done a hack job on the 4:3 original shooting ratio)...and where's the rest of St. Elsewhere and Night Court?

And season sets of Lassie, of course.

So we slept in until eleven. When I went to get breakfast I realized the only milk we had (sell-by date being today) was sour. I guess I'll have to suck it up; wasn't planning on going out today. Too nice and cool in here.

Saw a sparrow pecking disconsolately at the empty bird feeders and went out on the deck to rectify the problem. One of the bold little brown-headed nuthatches was sitting on one of the squirrel-proof feeders, looking down at the seed cup, then up at me, down at the seed cup, etc. I can just hear them talk: "This restaurant is terrible—the service is never consistent." "I'm sure not leaving that waitress a tip!" LOL.

Of course now that the feeders are full, nary a bird is in sight.

There is an odd insect outside: it looks like a big fly, about an inch long, at least, with moth-like wings that look as if they are upholstered black, and it buzzes like a bee. Have no idea what it is, but it was doing maneuvers over my head as I filled the feeders.

James has descended to the "Man Cave." Maybe I'll read American Connections. Or watch Johnny Tremain. Whatever.

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» Saturday, July 03, 2010
A Day With Friends
The alarm routed us out of bed at 8:30, but no Farmer's Market for us today. It was Hair Day and we had offered to go by Cobb General and pick up our friend Juanita, who has pretty much been at the hospital for two weeks since her mother had three strokes in a row. It looked very bad for a few days, but she has steadily improved, and it did Juanita good to get away from the hospital for a little while. She got to talk, get some fresh air, get her hair done, and relax for a few hours.

We brought the main dish, as I chronicled last night, and there were also new potatoes, two kinds of salad, a spinach dip in a bread bowl, and other goodies. We had a great time, although the noise level did get a bit high for a while. Elayna brought baby Chance, who has an enchanting smile, and Mel and I "Droid neeped," and even Charles showed up, exhausted from night shift. Good to see him.

We left about two, brought the remainder of the sausage home (there's dinner cooked tomorrow or Monday), and went to the hobby shop (where I kept dozing off) and then to Borders for a while, just to look around.

Had a pizza delivered for supper and watched one more Banacek, and now I am watching America in honor of Independence Day. In a little while I will put the flag out.

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» Friday, July 02, 2010
See You in the Classifieds
I spent pretty much all day doing advertisements. Since all my originals were PDF files, I had to retype a lot. Otherwise, not much e-mail traffic to answer. A lot of folks must have taken today off. Did finish one order. Big deal. That's four I've finished in the past two days, and been assigned ten or twelve. It's like trying to fight the tide.

We're doing lunch for Hair Day tomorrow, and I was getting worried. What if we got to BJs and they were out of sausage? People do grill sausage. And Costco closes early and we might not get there in time. So I figured I would run to BJs the moment the lawn was cut. But that didn't happen until the middle of the afternoon because it poured this morning—goodness, it was dark; it just made me long for my piwwow and my blankie and a good nap!—and I suspect Alex was waiting for it to dry a bit. By the time he finished, it was time for me to knock off anyway because we were given 59 minutes of admin leave for the holiday. It was about 3:15 when I got in the car and went to BJs. I got two big packs of Italian sausage (about 40 links) and also multicolor bell peppers, some mushrooms, and Jamaican meat patties for James.

When I got home, there was James. There was so little work they let some of the folks who came in earliest go home. So we put the sausage up and went to supper at the IHOP, then came home. I cut up the peppers for James, but otherwise was pretty much useless. The kitchen's really too small for two people to work in anyway, but I'm so slow and inept with food prep that I hold things up. Heck, James could have had the peppers sliced in half the time I did.

So he cooked up most of the sausage with peppers, onions and mushrooms, after having cooked some chicken sausage separately for friends who are Jewish. The house now smells like an Italian restaurant! Later we watched a couple of episodes of Banacek. Wish there were more of these.

I took a very short lunch today because of wanting to skip to BJs; I ate at my desk and took the actual lunch time to paint the tops of the corner shelves with gloss acrylic in a nice chocolate brown color (the underside is painted with a flat brown the color of mushrooms—called "Mushroom," go figure). While James was cooking the sausage I polished them down with Pledge. Now I just need three nails with fairly substantial heads (my beloved finishing nails can't help me here!) and they can be hung up.

I had $45 in Amazon credit, so I'd pre-ordered The Mothers-in-Law DVD set and ordered two books. They shipped the books early and they arrived today: Chicks Dig Time Lords and the revised edition of The Writer's Tale about Russell T. Davies and Doctor Who. The latter is 700 pages! Lots of "wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey" goodness! :-)

Really should order the second season of Banacek for ourselves. Oh, and I really want this, too...

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