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 theyoungfamily (at) earthlink (dot) net

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» Friday, May 30, 2003
Friday Five

1. What do you most want to be remembered for?

What I write.

2. What quotation best fits your outlook on life?

These days? Murphy's Rule.

3. What single achievement are you most proud of in the past year?

Surviving end-of-fiscal-year again.

4. What about the past ten years?

My website.

5. If you were asked to give a child a single piece of advice to guide them through life, what would you say?

Find something to do for a living that you really like to do (that is, as long as you can make a living from it). At least something very close. Waking up unhappy every weekday morning isn't pleasant.


» Thursday, May 29, 2003
Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Ain't- There's a lot of slang floating around out there. Some of it has even found its way into the dictionary. Is there any one word that you find more annoying than others? That you just wish would fall off the face of the planet, never to be heard again?

"Whazzup?" said in that Bronx cheer spitting voice.

Twosome: It- It's/Its, they're/their/there. Just a few of the most commonly misspelled words in the English language. So the question is, when you blog, do you worry about grammar, punctuation and spelling? If you notice a typo do you go back and edit? Or do you shrug it off because everyone makes typos?

Get real. I was an English major. I obsess over this type of thing. :-)

Threesome: Purty?- Purty/pretty, crick/creek, warsh/wash. All common pronunciations, whether they sound pretty or not. And one is mispronounced. What's one commonly mispronounced word that just drives you nuts?

The name of the place where I work, mispronounced constantly on the news. It's Centers for Disease Control, guys. Centers, not Center. There's an "s" at the end. (Oh, honorable mention: the name of that popular HBO show about the Mafia. "The Soprannnnnos." It's "ah," folks, not "ann." It's Italian. "Soprahnos.")

They forgot to ask which spelling error drives you bats the most. For me it's "lose" spelled "loose." "I was afraid we were going to loose the house." (You mean if you let it go it attacks someone?) C'mon, this is fourth grade stuff.

(My own personal pet--pun intended--peeve? "Dalmations." It's Dalmatians. Those spotted dogs made popular by Disney are Dalmatians. They're originally from Dalmatia. DVD and video stores spell it this way on the alphabetical dividers and on sale flyers even when they have the correct spelling in front of them. Arrgh!)


» Wednesday, May 28, 2003
In the News

Noticed this article about self-checkout lines this morning; particularly interested because they focused on the new ones at Home Depot, which we tried for the first time on Saturday. I love the self-checkouts at Kroger, except when they complain to you about your removing something from a bag or not putting it in properly. Much quicker than the cashier line if you've only got a few things.

And then an article about how much is spent on proms. Sheesh. All this for a stupid dance? The whole thing with tuxes and limos is so weird. I remember boys wearing their best suit to the prom and just driving the family car; the girl usually did spring for a new dress, but not one that cost the equivalent of $250! It was a Sunday dress you could wear to church afterwards. And an older sister or a friend or your mom put your hair up. Suddenly "the prom" has become the equivalent of a dress-rehearsal wedding. (But of course they don't care how much they spend--because they aren't spending it--Mom and Dad are.)


» Monday, May 26, 2003
Okay. Ants live in the ground. I've heard of ants living in trees, under porches, around patios, forming nests in homes.

I have never heard of ants living on a roof.

Yep, you guessed it. They weren't only hiding in the leaves on the roof, they had formed a thriving community up there. James knocked the leaves apart with a rake and they came scurrying out by the dozens. He saw ant eggs and grubs. He raked the leaf pile to the edge of the roof and over, and I raked them away from the house. He also sprayed up on the roof and that part of the house that abuts the roof.

We ended up doing a lot more chores than we intended: since we had the big ladder out anyway, he cleaned out all the uncovered gutters and I raked away the gunk and washed things down. I also pruned tree and bush branches where I could reach and James got a couple himself.

I suppose I should have "drug" out the hedge clippers and given the holly, box, and azalea its early summer trim to complete the yard work, but by then we were both filthy and I would have had to go inside to plug in the extension cord, since the dimwits who built this house didn't see fit to put an exterior plug in the front of the house, only in the rear.

That was Sunday's jolly activity; today we put ant granules on the lawn. I hate this part of the operation simply because they are toxic. We took precautions like putting plastic bags over our shoes and putting on plastic gloves, then removing both before coming inside and also undressing in the laundry room so to put clothes straight into the washer, but I was so paranoid about the granule dust that got on James that I did stuff like wash the doorknobs, vacuum the carpet again, wash down the doorjambs he had gone near, and wash the curtain divider to the den that he had touched. Inadvertently my own tiredness cost me more work: I'd left the finished laundry in the laundry room, and then realized some of the dust from James' clothes might have got on the clean laundry. So I spent this evening rinsing and re-drying two loads of laundry.

God, I hate bugs...


» Sunday, May 25, 2003
Today one of the newspaper front page stories was a profile of two families who had lost a family member in the war with Iraq. One of the family members commented that, to her, Memorial Day was always "a barbecue," but now it will be a day to remember their loved one and all the other soldiers who have died in wars.

It's very sad that someone close to them had to die to remind them of the people who have died for this country over the years. Yes, a cookout and a gathering is a nice thing to do on Memorial Day; it's always good to spend time with family and friends. But Memorial Day has always been about honoring those who fell; if today's young people don't realize it, then I indeed wonder what they do know.


» Friday, May 23, 2003
The ant situation has now become ridiculous. They have been seen in both upstairs bathrooms now, evidently coming up the intake pipe for the toilet initially. When we sprayed and blocked those up, they continued to come in. In the hall bathroom they are actually coming out from under the top of the tile around the bathtub.

I checked outside this morning and see there is a large pile of dead leaves on that part of the roof that abuts with the side of the house that is the bathroom wall. Noting the number of flies up there, there is a good chance there are also ants up there, getting at the rotting leaves or, worse, something that died on the roof. I wouldn't put it past the feral cats in the neighborhood to have killed a squirrel up on our roof. Possibly the ants are getting in under the siding. There is also a tree branch touching the roof; they could be very well running up the branch, onto the roof and thus under the siding.

I got really fed up yesterday when I found them in the mailbox...I can see we have our work cut out for us tomorrow.


I see it's a branding-type day at Friday Five

1. What brand of toothpaste do you use?

Colgate gel. I was brought up on the white paste, but James doesn't like what he terms "mud."

2. What brand of toilet paper do you prefer?

ScotTissue. I think we use less because it's single-ply.

3. What brand(s) of shoes do you wear?

Whatever fits my annoyingly-hard-to-fit feet. I have a small, wide foot. I understand there are women out there who just love to buy shoes, which I can't ever enjoy because for me it's an ordeal of several hours finding something that doesn't rub my toes raw. For sneakers I buy boys' (adolescent?) Reeboks. They are wider than the so-called women's wide shoe and cheaper for a shoe that looks exactly the same. For dressier shoes I get Hush Puppies.

4. What brand of soda do you drink?

UGH. Hate soda. Nasty stuff. Carbonation upsets my stomach and makes me burp. The only soda I was ever able to tolerate was Warwick Club lemon/lime soda. They didn't sell milk at the beach concession back when I was a kidlet because it spoiled too fast, so if we went for doughboys at Oakland Beach or were at Rocky Point Park, I got the lemon/lime.

5. What brand of gum do you chew?

Wrigley's spearmint or Doublemint. Sometimes I feel like something different and get Juicy Fruit.


» Thursday, May 22, 2003
Spam Flooding

(With the weather we've been having, I guess it's appropriate!)

Spam comes and goes. I was surprised Sunday morning to check e-mail and find no spam at all. Now since 11 p.m. last night (12 hours), we've received 22 e-mails, 20 of them spam.

Also amused to note that the bulk of these are for enlarging men's sexual organs. (The spammers think they're canny by separating the words so they make it past the spam blockers; I've already set up filters for all these permutations.) I really have to laugh at the thought of something giving ME larger men's sexual organs in the first place, but what I find really hilarious is that they talk about enlarging your "nuts." Now, I can see a guy wanting to enlarge "Big Al," as local radio personality Kim Petersen calls that particular member--it's this weird fantasy guys have that if suddenly they're three inches longer they're suddenly going to be tremendously sexy despite whatever faults they had before the "transformation" and have women hanging all over them. (Get a clue, fellas.) But why would you want larger testicles? I would think it would be horrendously uncomfortable and instead of being Mr. Big Stud women would just point at you and laugh.

Maybe I'm just "strange" compared to other women, who I find commenting about men's rear ends or the way they fill out their trousers. Certainly a nicely-built (and I mean nicely-built, not these bodybuilder types with "six packs"--ugh) man is attractive to look at. But what I have always noticed first about men are their eyes, their hands, and their voices, and what I see in them is more attractive than any male rear end on earth.


Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Rain, rain- Some people love rainy days every once in a while. Are you one of them? Do they make you want to curl up in bed with a good book or going walking through the mist? Or would you rather it just go away?

Walk in it my foot! There are already too many walkers in the rain; they have six legs and antennae and are now coming up the toilet feed pipes into the upstairs bathrooms, which now reek of Raid. I know we've had a drought for the past few years, but enough already! I'm tired of patrolling the perimeter of my house like it's the DMZ.

Twosome: Go away- If you could go away to just one place, where would you go and why?

Newport, Rhode Island if it's not raining. I'd kick back, take a picnic lunch, and bring a kite and breathe in that nice salty air. Boston if it is. [wry grin] Just go from bookstore to bookstore, then go feed the sparrows in Harvard Square.

Threesome: Come back another day- What's the one place you've been to that you would like to go back to another time?

New York City. I want to stay a few days and actually see some museums, especially the uncommon ones like the tenement museum and Theodore Roosevelt's birthplace. (I'd also like to take another trip cross-country via car...the entire US constitutes as "one place," after all.)


» Tuesday, May 20, 2003
I've been known to buy history books. :-) (The three shelves of them in the living room are only the smallest part...there are paperback ones as well, biography and space program tomes, and the nonfiction articles--heck, the stories themselves!--in St. Nicholas must comprise some type of living history.)

On my last trip to Kudzu, the remaindered bookstore, I picked up two of Edward Robb Ellis' volumes, Echoes of Distant Thunder: Life in the United States, 1914-1918 and A Nation in Torment: The Great American Depression, 1929-1939. The latter was of sufficient interest simply because of the era: my parents were both young adults during the Depression and I'd heard many tales of the hardships and the happiness of the times. The former was more intriguing because you very rarely see a homefront view of World War I; the history books seem to live on the battlefield. The gung-ho representation of WWI support is amply supported in the pages of St. Nicholas with its "For Country and For Liberty" columns and other articles. Ellis fills in a better knowledge of the times, including the bitter labor disputes, a "backstage" look at Woodrow Wilson and his family, and the influenza pandemic. Interestingly written and recommended.

I may have to go back to see if Kudzu still has copies of his other two books, A Diary of the Century: Tales from America's Greatest Diarist and The Epic of New York City.


» Friday, May 16, 2003

1. What drinking water do you prefer -- tap, bottle, purifier, etc.?

Unless the tap water in an area is really bad--sulphury like up in Plattsburgh, New York, or sandy and tasteless like in parts of south Florida--I don't see anything wrong with tap water. We do have a purifier on our kitchen faucet, though. I don't understand this mania about bottled water. Most of it is tasteless, and there are bottled water companies who have been investigated and it's been found out that their "pure mountain spring water" is just someone's tap water anyway.

2. What are your favourite flavor of chips?

Sour cream and onion.

3. Of all the things you can cook, what dish do you like the most?

Well, I don't really cook most of it, just the rice--I like rice in Campbell's chicken broth. Sprinkle on some celery salt and some Romano cheese and it's delicious. If I have to contribute to the cooking process more than that, then the answer is chicken cacciatore.

4. How do you have your eggs?

Eggs belong in cakes. I hate eggs. I like them in homemade eggnogs, but now you have to worry about that salmonella nonsense, so I haven't had one of those in years. Miss 'em, especially at Christmas.

5. Who was the last person who cooked you a meal? How did it turn out?

My husband. He's the cook in the family. Boneless skinless turkey thighs marinated in hickory flavor Lawry's sauce then grilled on the George Foreman grill. Mmmmmmm.


» Thursday, May 15, 2003
Much excitement about the new Matrix film coming out. Pray 'splain what the interest in this movie is? When the original hit HBO I switched it on simply to see what the furor was all about--all I'd heard about were the clever special effects. The first fifteen minutes bored the living daylights out of me and I turned it off. I hear the second movie is more of the same. I've seen some of the FX and though they do look amazing I can't see myself watching a movie for them. I suppose it would help if I were the least interested in Keanu Reeves...


Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Quick as- Quickly now, June is almost here: are you attending any graduation ceremonies in the next few weeks? Hmmm... Maybe that should be "Have you been invited to any?"

Don't know anyone graduating except for one of James' nieces; her ceremony is four hours away on a weeknight. No can do.

Twosome: Can- Still moving right along: Can it really be the Merry Month of May? How many birthdays do you have to remember this month? Family? Friends? Associates?

Um, according to my calendar, the only critical day was Mother's Day. My parents' anniversary used to be May 10. Now it's just a very wistful day for Mom...

Threesome: Be(e)- Be ready, the bug population is starting to be a bother (at least from blog reports). Is there any particular crawly or flying beastie that just makes you jump out of your skin?

Evidently you've been reading my blog...LOL. Yes, the ants have already attacked. I dislike ants that come en masse; one lone ant (if it's indeed lone) I can handle. I guess palmetto bugs would answer the question, although they are much less of a hassle with a terrier in the house. Willow loves them as toys. She plays with them until they're "broken," then rolls in them. Sometimes she eats them, too; otherwise I point to the dead body and ask, "James, can you pick up that...thing?" Wasps scare me, too. James is allergic. I just merely hate mosquitoes--they apparently love my sweet Italian blood--and regular-size roaches are bad news, too.


» Wednesday, May 14, 2003
Apparently now two of the students who were involved in the shameful hazing in Glenview, Illinois are filing suits to have their suspension and possible expulsion from school revolked.

What kind of parents do these kids have that they would do such a thing? I suspect their attitude was "Oh, this was just a harmless little prank! It's not like they brought guns to school!" Snort. Terrorism is terrorism, no matter what the weapon, and this was terrorism. The students involved should be shipped off to reform school, if such an institution exists any longer. If not, how about to a minimum security prison where hoodlums like that belong.

I hope the parents of the students victimized sue the pants off the parents of the perpetrators. Maybe attacking their precious pocketbooks will convince these nauseating excuses for parents that they are responsible for bringing up decent children, not a bunch of snot-nosed abusive brats that think this sort of thing is acceptable and even amusing.


» Friday, May 09, 2003
They're Creepy and They're Oooky, They're Crawly and Not Spooky, They're Altogether Gooky, The Ant Families...

Sigh...ever feel like you've gone a step forward and then got kicked two steps back?

About 17 days ago, we found ants running around on the kitchen counter. I had to clear the entire counter, inspect everything I stored on the table for ants. James went to the store and bought ant baits and some white vinegar, which I read destroys ant trails. He also went outside and sprayed around the outside of the kitchen window (they looked like they might be coming out under the window frame). We packed boric acid powder all around the windowsill and around the edge of the backsplash. Three days later, before we went to the North Georgia Mountains for the weekend, I sprayed under the sink with Raid, especially the drainpipe.

This week I hadn't seen but the occasional ant on the kitchen counter, most of them dead, so as a surprise to James, I was finally going to put all the things still on the table back on the kitchen counter, after one more good scrub with the vinegar.

We've had three days of hard rain with creeks overflowing and people flooded south of the city. I guess the ants got displaced, too. When I went to get some dry milk out of one of the freestanding pantries (opposite side of the room from the counter and next to the sliding glass doors), what should I find among the bottles and boxes but at least two dozen ants milling about! I checked outside the cupboard and there were more in a nice little line, having evidently squeezed through what minute crack there was on those nasty doors!

So I spent last night cleaning out the whole stupid cupboard and throwing out any open packages. This I suppose was fortutious since there were a bunch of things in there James can't eat anymore and that I'm trying not to eat, but it felt so wasteful tossing it all. I wiped everything else down with vinegar, sprayed with Raid at the bottom of the cabinet and behind it, around the door where they were coming in, then wiped the floor itself with vinegar to destroy any scent trails. I also had to clean off the kitchen table because James was helping out by pulling things out of the cupboard but not noticing they had ants on them and they got on the table, too.

Now I'm worried about the other cupboard. I'm sure everything in there is containerized, and there are no obvious sign of a stream of ants. I did find one ant on one shelf, but he was dead.

I bought some new Raid ant baits today just for the cupboard. They smell like peanut butter. Hope the poison is as good as the smell.

Oh, James went outside and sprayed outside the door as well, also on the kitchen window again (this is no problem because it's so bloody hot we had to light off the A/C anyway). He said he did see ants climbing up the side of the house so it is possible they got in through the window frame last time.

Nasty little creatures.

This morning I went back into the kitchen to tidy a little more. Not sure if this was from the outside or one of the ants from last night, but I saw one at the other end of the sliding glass doors, near Willow's food and water. Just in case this was the "scout ant" I pulled the dog's bowls, wiped the food bowl down with vinegar, washed and wiped down the water bowl and refilled it, and moved them to under the kitchen table. Then I swept the floor in front of the glass doors and where the dog eats, washed it, and wiped that down with vinegar.

Now the quandary. Six years ago, when we had our other dog, Leia, this happened. They came in the other way since there was no cupboard there then and ants were just strolling in her food dish. We cleaned up the area, moved her food dishes for a week, and sprayed with Raid several times around the door. The ants didn't come back. I am wondering if I should do this again. But Willow spends more time near the door than Leia did and I worry about her. I even called the vet and asked what they use; they have an exterminator. Sigh. The vet tech did tell me she had this problem at home and she ran out of bug spray. She got rid of the ants with...get this...WD40!

I think the reason we are getting the ants again is that for the past five years we used the Ortho ant granules outside on the foundation of the house. I would put it out there as soon as I saw ants on the driveway, applying it once a month around the entire house. You put it down, you soak it, and the ants stay away. It came in a shaker bottle so you could get it really close to the concrete. (We used the huge bag in the spreader for the lawn.)

Last year every store quit carrying the shaker bottles. They have only the ant dust. I don't like the dust because it flies around when you apply it and gets on you and where you don't want it to be. If I had "Ortho'd" this year like I usually do we probably wouldn't be having this problem.


Friday Five

1. Would you consider yourself an organized person? Why or why not?

It depends on what needs to be organized. My books are, my clothes aren't. Books are important. However I'm trying to be more organized. I'm not yet--or I would know where the darn booklet with the rebate coupons for the tax software is. Sigh.

2. Do you keep some type of planner, organizer, calendar, etc. with you, and do you use it regularly?

Yes, there's a calendar on my PDA. I write everything I need to do on it.

3. Would you say that your desk is organized right now?

I wouldn't say it was organized, but I can find everything.

4. Do you alphabetize CDs, books, and DVDs, or does it not matter?

CDs yes, and categorized. DVDs yes. The videos are numbered and indexed in a book (but the index isn't up to date). Books...some of them. I never alphabetized the paperback books after we moved. The Christmas books are organized by size.

5. What's the hardest thing you've ever had to organize?

A spreadsheet I had to do at work. It was for 60 plus task orders (mini contracts) within a larger contract. Each time there was a new modification or new task order I had to update the spreadsheet. Several of the task orders had multiple budget numbers and monies had to be added to each separately. I got to the point where I would wait until everyone went to lunch and then have a good cry.


» Thursday, May 08, 2003
All right. I confess. I've watched Wildest Police Chases and Caught on Camera and others of that ilk. But Fox has finally hit bottom:

Tonight at 8 p.m. Eastern: The First Annual Miss Dog Beauty Pageant . Canine representatives from all 50 states and the District of Columbia vie for a beauty title.

You have GOT to be kidding.


Thursday Threesome

Onesome- Coffee: Do you drink coffee? If so, do you ask for brewed or do you prefer the fancy espresso drinks? What's your flavor?

I love just regular coffee. Having said so, I'll add that I don't drink it. Regular coffee gives me heart palpitations from the caffiene. Decaf gives me heartburn. My favorite ice cream flavor is coffee and I like coffee syrup in my milk. I used to have the espresso with whipped cream when we went to the 57th Fighter Group restaurant, but we haven't gone in years.

Twosome- Tea: Do you drink tea? Hot or iced? Regular, herbal or flavored?

Frankly, tea tastes terrible to me, even with loads of sugar in it. When I've got a headcold, I have peppermint tea, and even that needs lots of sugar to be palatable.

Threesome- Or Me?: Ok, not really me! Seriously, what's your favorite beverage? Alcoholic or non, healthy or not?

Milk! Cold, white skim milk! (I can't drink whole milk anymore; it tastes thick, like cream.) I'm also partial to lemon-lime Kool Aid, but I preferred it years ago when both Eclipse Syrup and Zarex made a concentrated lemon-lime syrup that you could just mix with water. Then you didn't have the 2-quart container taking up room in the fridge, plus you could have some whenever you wanted, not have to make up a big batch all at once.


» Wednesday, May 07, 2003
I saw the prettiest thing at lunch. I was just getting into the car when I saw a movement of bright blue and fluttering into the ground cover not two feet from the nose of my car was a bluebird. I froze and watched him as he turned, flirting his tail and exposing his bright orange chest. The blue of his head and wings was almost neon-blue in its intensity. He seemed to be hunting something and in a minute had jumped to another location, further away, and yet another and another, always further on. I followed him until I could no longer see his color, just his silhouette, and then he was gone.


"Let's do the time warp again" -- this time sing it "Here come the rain clouds again."

If I see animals walking around in pairs, I'm outta here.


» Tuesday, May 06, 2003
I know, I haven't written spontaneously in a while. Lots to do, occasional bouts of depression, and the stupid ants we found on the kitchen counter had a lot to do with it.

In the meantime, to paraphrase whomever on the AJC's "Vent" column: "Will the person who did the rain dance please knock it off?"

Last year we were in the throes of a drought. When we went out to Claudia and Doug's property in Douglasville to fly rockets, we brought water in case of fire.

This year it seems that every other day it rains. The lawn looks like a forest but there is no dry time for someone to cut it. Worse, severe thunderstorms have been plowing through with unnerving frequency. Not quite two weeks ago, while we were safely ensconced in the North Georgia mountains, a lollapalooza of a storm came through with hail and the classic green sky that heralds a tornado (I'd always heard about this sky but never wanted to see it; I did--as green as Oz!).

Today the sky turned that color black and smoky grey that looks as if all the Hounds of Hell are on the hunt. They even asked us to go down to the first floor of our building. The rain looked as if it were lashed by a hurricane (the type of weather I call "Georgia Monsoon Season"). It rolled away only to be followed by another not an hour later. Last night's 90 minute commute looks like it may repeat itself.


» Friday, May 02, 2003
Friday Five

1. Name one song you hate to admit you like.

Due to persistent ribbing, you mean? Darn. There are probably a lot I'd get ribbed about. I remember one that was my dad's favorite, "The Men in My Little Girl's Life." (Another response, in fact, for question 2.) Judging by posts in the music newsgroups, the answer might be "Him"--since from my POV this "lightweight little song" brings back the best of memories: a job that was, while not challenging, fairly well-liked with friendly co-workers; a time when I was working full time and still living at home, going to New York twice a year, jaunting occasionally to Boston and reveling in bookstores and camera-copies of Dr. Who and Blake's 7, one that brings back memories of spring Sundays in Newport and driving with the windows open.

2. Name two songs that always make you cry.

"The Way We Were" and Rupert Holmes' "The Old School."

3. Name three songs that turn you on.

Um, turn me on how? This could be embarrassing... If we're talking "Bolero"-type turn-on, "Morning Man" will certainly do it.

4. Name four songs that always make you feel good.

Hm. Now we're back to flashback music, I "Him." And the theme song to Mannix. Any of the background music to the Timmy episodes of Lassie. And, unashamedly, "God Bless America" (Kate Smith version, of course).

5. Name five songs you couldn't ever do without.

Name any five Christmas songs...LOL. (Well, there I'd get picky, too: no hard rock, rap, hip-hop or whatever this modern idiocy is called.) Lots of choices left: Bruce Mitchell's version of "Joy To the World," Richard Carpenter's "Holly and the Ivy," Nancy Wilson singing "The Christmas Waltz," anyone singing "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," and of course "Der Bingle" performing "White Christmas" (the last two qualifying for Question 2 as well...).


» Thursday, May 01, 2003
HBO was running the recent Scooby-Doo movie tonight, so I put it on.

People actually paid to see this?


American Lung Association Smog Report

How surprising...not! The Atlanta metro air quality is nearly as bad as Los Angeles.

Of course all the cities got bad marks, but Fulton County appears to have outrun some classic pollution centers like New York City and Boston. Hard to tell if the climate was a contributing factor. Birmingham, with a similar climate, did not have as high a score--but their traffic load is much less than Atlanta's.


Thursday Threesome

Onesome: See-- What do you see when you look out your kitchen window? Just curious...

Our kitchen window is at the side of the house, so what we see is an overgrown privet bush and our neighbor's screened-in porch. Sometimes her grey-and-white tabby cat is at the screen door.

Twosome: Spot-- Okay, pet names... Come on; not everyone has a "Sparky" or a "Fluffy". If you have a pet or two, what did you name them? Hmmm... No pets? How about a 'pet name' for someone close to you?

Our terrier is Willow after Alyson Hannigan's character on Buffy. She was small, shy and had big brown eyes. It seemed appropriate at the time. Depending on what mood she's in at the time, she can also be "Daddy's Puppy," "Miss Dog," or "The Demanding Little Bitch." Bandit the budgie is named after Jonny Quest's dog because he has stripes forming a mask over both eyes. He's also either "Squeaker," "Squirt," or "Sweetie Bunny."

Threesome: Run-- Hey, what's your favorite 'run over to' place? You know, the "Honey, I'll be back in a bit, I need to run over to..." That place!

Food Depot, I guess, unless it's after 9 p.m., in which case it's Kroger (open 24 hours)...which reminds me I need to run over to the post office on Saturday and mail my mom's Mother's Day present...

The place we need to "run over to" on the way home is all too often Kaiser Permanente for more damn prescriptions. Between the two of us we're a walking pharmacoepia.