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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» Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I Hate [Despise, Loathe, Dislike Extremely] Microsoft Word
I am working with a document in outline form with subheadings and have been trying without success for the past fifteen minutes to get a first-level heading to go back to the margin where it belongs. I keep pressing "decrease indent" but it only goes as far as a third-level subheading and stops there.

I could have fixed this in five seconds in Word Perfect.

Damn Bill Gates and his damn piece of crap word processor and damn the Feds for insisting that we use the piece of crap instead of WP which we had and they decided to abandon because "everyone has Word." ("Everyone has Word" because we've allowed Microslop to perpetuate their monopoly on every computer sold. As my mother always said "If 'everyone' jumped off a bridge, would you jump, too?")


» Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Sour Notes... Holiday Harbour.


Okay, It's Official...
...I'm older than dirt. (Since I'm gonna be fifty in less than two weeks, I guess so!)

"The Older Than Dirt" Quiz

How old are you? You may be older than dirt! Take this quiz to find out.
Count all the ones that you remember—not the ones you were told about! Ratings are at the bottom.

• Blackjack chewing gum...I can't say I remember this; I do remember Adams chewing gum...and when they had peppermint chewing gum, not just spearmint and "Doublemint"...the Beech-Nut spearmint gum wrapper was a rich dark green and to this day I think of that color as a "spearmint green"...

• Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water...Yep, they sold them at Joe's Spa and Tom's Superette at the top of the hill on Gansett Avenue (near the railroad bridge) and the candy store on the corner whose name I no longer remember, with the rest of the penny candy: Squirrel Nuts, mint juleps, Mary Janes, Bit O Honeys, little Tootsie Rolls, banana chews, candy buttons...

• Candy cigarettes...With the penny candy, too...didn't get them much...I liked Squirrel Nuts and mint juleps the best...and Hershey bars, which were a dime back then...

• Soda pop machines that dispensed bottles...Yep...mostly they were red machines, even if they didn't sell Coca Cola...I loved Warwick Club lemon-lime was the only soda I liked...we'd get it in bottles at Gus's at Oakland Beach when we went for doughboys...(Gus's is now Iggy's)...

• Coffee shops with tableside jukeboxes...Yep...all the time...Dad would never give me money to play a song :-)...I think even the old Garden City bowling alley had these at one time...

• Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers...We never had to worry about the alarm clock not going off at 6 a.m. for my dad, because the rattle of the milk bottles on the porch and the sound of the wooden screen door closing woke us up...mmmm, Hood's milk...

• Party lines...Gosh, yes...when I was very small we had a four-party line...everyone had a different "ring" (a long and a short, two shorts and long, etc.) but I can't remember ours...then we went to two...I remember we were lucky because our other party almost never was on the phone...I knew people who weren't so lucky...

• Newsreels before the, not this, although my parents told me about them...I remember cartoons before the movie, and double features, too, though...the last movies I saw at the old RKO Albee in downtown Providence was a double bill of Smoky and Way, Way Out, a Jerry Lewis flick...

• P. F. Flyers...Oh, man, the sneakers to have, especially for boys...they advertised on Jonny Quest...we had a Keds factory down near Harris Avenue when I was a kid; we'd go to the factory outlet there...

• Butch wax...Nope, I didn't hear of it until later, but I know know that the boys I knew then used it (or Brylcreem..."a little dab'll do ya" dad used Alberto VO5 hair cream)...

• Telephone numbers with a word prefix (Olive -6933)...Sure! Ours was WIlliams 2...

• Peashooters..."Bad boys" had these...or worse, BB guns and broke windows...(Donna, remember the story about your dad and the BB gun?)...

• Howdy Doody...Yes, but my Dad wouldn't let me watch it...he was against me watching "stupid" shows...he wanted me to grow up to be smart and graduate high school and go to college like he didn't get to do...

• 45 RPM records (and record players!)...Sure, had at least two record Grandpa used to play Italian records in his greenhouse and every so often would burn out the phonograph...they had tubes then, remember? my Dad would buy me a new one and give him mine...the last time it happened we already had a new stereo so I asked Dad if I couldn't have one of those new cassette tape recorders instead...I still have my old 45s...and my old 78s, too, just don't have anything to play the 78s on...they were kids' records, unbreakable...they're bright yellow (some were red) of them is Roy Rogers and Dale Evans singing "Happy Trails"...I used to watch Roy's show every Saturday morning...

• S&H Green Stamps...Yep, we shopped at Almacs to get them...Stop&Shop gave another kind of stamps; they were pink...I know we cashed in stamps from time to time...I think we got our old Skotch cooler from S&H...

• Hi-fi's...Oh, yes! My Uncle Ralph and Auntie Lisa had one of those big units: the hi-fi in with the television...we didn't get a "hi-fi" (really a stereo phonograph with an eight-track player) until my folks got one free from the bank for starting a long-term CD...

• Metal ice trays with lever...Which came in the fridge with the latch on the door which you had to be careful to take off if you discarded the refrigerator because kids used to get trapped in them and suffocate...we would hear stuff like this on the news all the time back then, especially in the summer...sad and scary...

• Mimeograph paper...Ah, the wonderful scent of fresh ditto paper!...I didn't smell it to get high, I just liked the smell!...

• Blue flashbulbs...On the Brownie folks had a was a square brown box and you looked in the viewfinder on the top to take the photo of what was in front of you...the film had to be put in very carefully...turn the uptake crank just far enough that the film stayed on the reel, but not too far that you got too much into the film...the flashgun clipped on...looked like those big silver trumpet ones on the old movies about newspaper reporters...the flashbulbs were blue so you could take natural color pictures inside (the lightbulbs otherwise gave everything a yellow cast)...there were blue flashcubes, too...remember flashcubes?...they went on the first fooling with the film, just pop in the cartridge...

• Packards...No.

• Roller skate keys...Yes...I couldn't have roller skates...Dad was afraid I'd hurt myself (it was a pain being an only child!)...but the other kids had them...I think Maria Angelone did, and some of my cousins...

• Cork popguns...No...only saw pics of them in the "Little Rascals" shorts...

• Drive-ins...Cranston Drive-In, on Route 5...where the Marshalls is now...across from Warwick Shoppers World (which became Zayres which became Ames which is now a Building  19)...gosh, they had swings...and the popcorn from the stand tasted sooooo good...we saw Cheyenne Autumn there, and Lonely Are the Brave (I cried over the horse being shot for at least a week) and Billie...

• Studebakers...No, heard a lot about 'em, though...

• Wash tub wringers...I swear one of the relatives still had a wringer washer...Donna, was it Grandma?...maybe they didn't use it, but they still had it in the cellar or something...I used to turn the crank...

• Bazooka chewing gum...And those terrible puns in the "Bazooka Joe" hard it was on cold nearly broke a tooth trying to start it...

• Television broadcasts ending at night and not coming on until late morning...Yes! Sometimes I was up that early, too, waiting for a rerun of Lassie or something good like that...

• Television test patterns...You always wanted to catch the one with the Indian chief's head on it...he was sooooo cool...the color test patterns were boring...just vertical colored lines...

• The Amos and Andy show (radio or TV!)...I must confess I liked the Amos and Andy television show...I didn't know anyone who was black...heck, I hardly knew anyone who wasn't Italian...I would have liked to know all of them...I thought they were nice folks even if the Kingfish was crooked...he wasn't any different from the local white politicians!...

• The television day beginning and ending with "The Star Spangled Banner"...Yep, before Captain Kangaroo or the early local shows that the new announcers got stuck with, like Hank Bouchard...

If you remembered 0-8 you're still young (ish)
If you remembered 9-15, you're getting older
If you remembered 16-22, don't tell your age
If you remembered 22-30, you're older than dirt!


» Monday, November 28, 2005
Wanted: A Family for Christmas
Found my mom's house listed on a real estate site today.

I feel...empty.

But then I guess the house is feeling that way, too. I hope someone wants to love it.


Are Gifts What Christmas is Made Of?
Some thoughts in Holiday Harbour.


Monday Madness

1. I've always been afraid of snakes and worms; I would even skip the "snake" or "worm" articles when I read the encyclopedia .

2. People should not talk on cell phones while in public places where other people are trying to concentrate (like the movies) .

3. The one thing I look forward to every day is getting home from work! .

4. My first meal of the day usually consists of milk and a bowl of low sugar maple and brown sugar Quaker oatmeal .

5. It seems like cleaning house and washing clothes is a never-ending job.

That's because it is! :-)

6. The last time I painted a room in my house/apartment was after the dryer caught fire; we painted the laundry room .

7. The next time I paint, I'd like to paint my bed (room) a winter blue (color).

And stencil it with white snowflakes.


Whoa! Apparently everyone who was off over the weekend went into work this morning; traffic was horrendous for a Monday. Plus it was overcast and "misting." Not only was everyone squirrelly because of the rain, but just on my 28-mile commute there were at least five accidents, including a whopper on the southbound side of I-85 as I was coming northbound, involving three ambulances! Very scary. I've always been very glad I didn't have to come southbound on I-85 in the mornings; traffic is always backed up down near the "connector" (where I-85 and I-75 meet to go through downtown Atlanta) even when there is no accident.


» Sunday, November 27, 2005
Puppies, Dangling Lights, Too Many Cars, Books, and Other Subjects...
...all found after motoring in Holiday Harbour.


» Saturday, November 26, 2005
The Great Christmas Tree Hunt...
...and other events in Holiday Harbour.


» Friday, November 25, 2005
Black Friday Shopping... Holiday Harbour.


» Thursday, November 24, 2005
Thanksgiving at Home
We had a quiet day today. I ran out for a paper before the Macy's parade began and spent most of the time perusing the sales. There aren't any "I gotta haves" (but there usually aren't), although I wish I could afford one of those highly rebated computers right now. Lots of cute little useful gadgets, though: BrandsMart has a hair dryer that's only $4. I can tell you how old my hair dryer is: I bought it the day Alice and Ken got married, so it's 15 1/2 years now. :-) I'll probably go out early and go to JoAnn; the sales are better, and the Michael's 50 percent off coupon is actually for Saturday.

After the parade came the dog show, where we saw the cute little dog that was nearly Willow's twin. I entered Willow's picture in their dog contest.

We had dinner at Golden Corral: they had fried turkey "drummettes" which were larger than chicken legs. One and a couple of spoonsfuls of potatoes and stuffing (and some popcorn shrimp) satisfied for me. Of course had some pumpkin pie!

Then we took Wil to the house and also went by Ellis Farm so James could see the neat looking "hunting lodges." Then James retreated to his hobby room for a while while I watched The Thanksgiving Treasure. It was good to be alone because I had a nice little cry when Mr. Rhenquist died.

It's hard for me to see those houses with the radiators and the old-fashioned patterned wallpaper and the old stoves...even if the radiators and the "paramecium" patterned wallpaper was gone from our house by the time I was of school age, I still remember them (oh, how I remember Mom bleeding the radiators!), the homes I visited during the holidays were still "dressed" that way, and seeing it all makes me melancholy. I could walk into Addie's house and visit her school and feel perfectly at home because it looks like it used to and is comfortable and warm and safe.

Have the "lighting of the Great Tree" on now with mixed emotions (most of them bad). "The Great Tree" used to be at the old Richs department store in downtown Atlanta, but you'd never know it the way the commercial talk about the history of the event. They carefully skirt the name and the only "mention" of it I've seen is a photo of the Pink Pig children's ride that still had the Richs' name painted on it (and they panned quickly away from it). Looks like the people at Federated Department Stores want to make sure you forget that Richs (and not Macy's) used to be the Atlanta institution. I'm not a native Atlantan, but I think it sucks. Okay, so Macy's has absorbed places like Filene's and Marshall Field's and Richs (which swallowed up Davisons before it) and other places are out of business after many years of serving happy customers. It's the way of business.

But they don't have to work it as if it never happened. We were there. We went to Richs, and Marshall Field, and Filene's, and Jordan Marsh, and the Outlet Company and Shepards and Brodsky's and McCrory and Woolworths, and we loved them and we will not forget. And Federated can just stick it.

It's a boring show anyway. They used to have local singing groups and choirs, and now it's pop stars and the Rockettes and the newscasters blatting. (I wanted to bonk Matt Lauer and Katie Couric and Al Roker during the Macy's parade this morning; I don't give a fig what you think of the parade—I want to watch it. Tell me who's on the float and then shut up.)

The tree's still pretty.


More House Pics
With Willow and I in them.


Anyone watch the dog show? About halfway through John O'Hurley was holding a little brown and white dog. It was a little smaller, but it could have been Willow's sibling. It looked almost exactly like her.


Happy Thanksgiving!
This is a screen grab of Ray Billingsly's "Curtis" strip for today, since the link won't last through tomorrow. I copy it only because it's important to remember in days to come, not just today.

Curtis comic strip by Ray Billingsly 11-24-2005

I give thanks for my friends
I give thanks for my relatives
I give thanks for my godmother
I give thanks for my husband, who's a saint sometimes
I give thanks for our budgie, who makes me laugh
I give thanks for our dog, who is a lesson in love and devotion
I give thanks for our home
I give thanks for my books, which set my mind free
I give thanks to God for my friends and relatives, husband and pets, who helped me through the challenges of 2005.

And I thank God for having a wonderful father for 30 years and a wonderful mother for nearly fifty. There is not one day when I don't miss you both.

Love you all.


» Wednesday, November 23, 2005
House Call
Short post in Autumn Hollow.


"Over the River and Through the Wood"
The classic Thanksgiving poem, written by Lydia Maria Child and originally called "A Boy's Thanksgiving Day."
Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather's house we go;
the horse knows the way to carry the sleigh
through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather's house away!
We would not stop for doll or top,
for 'tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood-
oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes and bites the nose,
as over the ground we go.

Over the river, and through the wood.
with a clear blue winter sky,
The dogs do bark and the children hark,
as we go jingling by.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring, "Ting a ling ding!"
Hurray for Thanskgiving Day!

Over the river, and through the wood-
no matter for winds that blow;
Or if we get the sleigh upset
into a bank of snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to see little John and Ann;
We will kiss them all, and play snowball
and stay as long as we can.

Over the river, and through the wood,
trot fast my dapple gray!
Spring over the ground like a hunting-hound!
For 'tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood
and straight through the barnyard gate.
We seem to go extremely slow-
it is so hard to wait!

Over the river, and through the wood-
Old Jowler hears our bells;
He shakes his paw with a loud bow-wow,
and thus the news he tells.

Over the river, and through the wood-
when Grandmother sees us come,
She will say, "O, dear, the children are here,
bring pie for everyone."

Over the river, and through the wood-
now Grandmothers cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!
More about Lydia Maria Child


Thanksgiving Food
The chatter's in Holiday Harbour.


» Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Not Just the Size
Tiny Toys Remain Major Cause of Child Deaths
The U.S. PIRG group also recommended that shoppers avoid buying toys that seem too loud, since children can be even more sensitive to noise than adults. Researchers said they found some noisemaking toys, including toy electric guitars, that appeared to exceed voluntary standards.

"A child's hearing is so critical for development. Even partial hearing loss can result in an impaired ability to speak and acquire language," said Alison Cassady, U.S. PIRG's research director. The group recommends taping over the speakers of excessively loud toys or simply removing their batteries to protect a child's hearing.
Of course this won't help a bit if the parents are listening to the stereo as loud as in some of the cars that go by our house every day...


I Don't Get It
I have several computer games at home and occasionally do play one for an hour or two, but very rarely. I don't understand the fascination; for something participatory I'd rather read. Oh, well, diff'rent strokes and all that.

Xbox Frenzy in Full Effect


Tuesday Twosome

1. What's the best class you ever took? What's the best job you've ever had?

Ninth grade English. Charles Abosamra. I had lots of good teachers, but he was the best.
Gosh, I don't know if I've had any best jobs. I've just always worked because I had to. But I guess when I was typing at Robins AFB. At least I wasn't working with {gag} numbers or filing.

2. Have you ever thrown up on someone? Has anyone ever thrown up on you?

LOL. Didn't we all throw up on our mothers as children? Otherwise, no. I don't do things in public that would make me barf on people.
Um, no.

3. Do you love your mom and dad? Do you love our siblings?

I always loved my mom and dad, even in my teens and I was never ashamed to be seen with them, like some kids. We had fights, but it didn't mean anything. James used to be bothered when we argued. ??? I told him, "We're Italian. We love each other at the tops of our lungs." A few minutes later we'd be going out for ice cream. It's just what we did.
I didn't have any siblings. I probably would have fought with them and still loved them, too.

4. Whats the bravest thing you have done for someone else? What is the bravest thing someone else has done for you?

I stayed in Georgia.
He stayed with me. <wry g>

5. If you could touch the stars or touch the moon, which would you choose? Would you fly or have magical powers?

Oh, I want to touch the stars! I want to see what's out there. I'd love to be able to fly. I think Pidgie is so lucky; he can stretch out his wings and go. Magical powers would be nice if they would let me go back in time. I want to see things: what George Washington and Queen Elizabeth I and Marcus Aurelius and all those other historical figures looked like, and streets and schools and countryside years ago. There was a musical on Sunday, from 1938; even though they would do Gone With the Wind and Wizard of Oz the next year in color, most of these musicals were in black and white, but this one was in color, and they had the most fascinating street shots of New York City in 1938. I wanted to be able to do a Mary Poppins and jump in so badly!


Good for Him
We didn't go out to eat a lot when I was a kid for economic reasons, but when we did, I was expected to behave. I had to sit still and be quiet. Oh, I didn't have to sit there with my hands folded and my mouth pinned shut like some Victorian kid; I could bring a stuffed animal or a small toy to play with, and conversation was just fine. But going out was a special occasion, and I was expected to be considerate of the other people in the restaurant or coffee shop.

These days, though, you'd think a restaurant was a playground for some kids. I remember we didn't go back to Italian Oven for over a year after that little boy was allowed to run loose around the long table where the rest of his family was having dinner, bumping into the waiters and screaming, and the only reason any of the rest of them finally said anything was when the kid crawled under a booth where a family was having dinner, hitting them in the legs. And then that person was clueless enough to ask, "Oh, is he bothering you?"

Not to mention the mother I mentioned several months ago who sat through dinner at Home Town Buffet for over a half hour watching and doing nothing while her kid sucked on a salt shaker!

I'm sorry these parents are so "kid-centric" that they are blind to the fact that their kids are being rude. "Oh, he's just little" doesn't wash. Poor children many years ago managed adult tasks on a daily basis because children are not stupid, so it is not unrealistic to expect them to learn a few basic manners (and one does not have to resort to beating or emotionally abusing them as was done back then).

Besides abusing the rights of the others, have these parents even though of the dangers of letting their kids run loose like this? Bumping into waiters at restaurants or patrons of coffee shops make them vulnerable to hot foods, sharp utensils, or heavy trays and plates falling on them. They could slip on the floors or whack their heads on corners of tables. Wandering around on hands and knees picks up germs and dirt. Some decorative plants are poisonous.

But when any of this happens, the parents will sue the establishment, instead of admitting they made a mistake letting their child run loose. Restaurant owners and patrons are not babysitters and were never meant to be.

War on Brats


» Monday, November 21, 2005
Damn, I'm cold. It started to pour and the wind to gust just before I had to get out of the car. I was parked fairly close but even then my pants are sopped from the bottom of my coat down to my feet. Brrrr...


Aches and Pains
It's one of those rainy November days when the dampness gets into your bones anyway, and I think I slept wrong; the arthritis in my right shoulder is hurting pretty badly no matter what. I've taken some Aleve, but sure wish I had one of those Therapatches with me. Plus I only slept about four hours last night, so I feel like a ambulatory fuzz machine. I can't wait until lunchtime when I can nap.

While I was fighting the usual clutter battle on my computer desk yesterday, I found The Griever's Bill of Rights For The Holidays that the hospice people sent me. I'm already feeling a bit down about the holidays, but I knew that was going to happen. Compared to last year at this time, my emotions are running pretty low, but it was natural to happen. It's the listlessness that bothers me more than the grief. My attitude right now is "I just don't care." And yet this is my favorite time of year and I would like to have a little fun after the annual misery of summer and the added grief on top of it.

I wonder, too, why things like "The Griever's Bill of Rights For The Holidays" has to exist at all. It's a person's right to celebrate—or not celebrate—the holidays, just as they want. I love Christmas, but there's such a hysteria about it that it drives me nuts: perfect decorations, perfect (and expensive) presents, perfect food. What happened to just getting together, giving a token of affection, having a good time and eating plain old cookies or a family dinner? That's why I loathed Grisham's Skipping Christmas so much; the Kranks were expected to conform to some nonsensical Christmas hysteria and instead of doing what they wanted to do, ended up doing what they were expected to do. It's enough to make you sick.

Maybe I'm feeling sober because I dubbed off the majority of The Century yesterday: from World War II through Jimmy Carter's presidency: the Holocaust, blacklisting, assassination, Vietnam, race riots, and Watergate paraded in all their "glory." We lived in much too "interesting times" and it was depressing watching it all over again.

On a semi-hopeful note, I started a larger cross-stitch project last night, my first for a long time. It's a Thanksgiving sampler: a big garland of autumn leaves and fruits on the top and right, lettering left and bottom, with "We gather together to ask the Lord's blessing" in the middle of it.


Monday Madness

1. I have little or no patience when it comes to waiting in traffic .

2. I wish I could spend more time writing .

3. The most productive thing I accomplished this past weekend was cleaning about a half garbage bag full of junk out of the house, like craft projects I'm not going to do, etc. .

4. The most enjoyable thing I did this weekend was go see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire with friends .

5. I've always wanted to learn how to not worry so much .

6. If money wasn't an issue, I'd buy a wide-screen LCD television .

7. I blog because writing is as natural as breathing .


» Sunday, November 20, 2005
New Photos...
...inside all that framing.

If I'd known it was going to go up that fast I would have taken an extra granola bar and gone over after work during the week.


Day of the "Christmas Pud"... Holiday Harbour.


» Saturday, November 19, 2005
Get Togethers, Goblets, and Gobsmacked
Today was our monthly "Hair Day." We have some friends who know a woman who is a hairdresser. Once a month she comes over to our friends' home and we get together, someone brings lunch fixings, the rest of us bring sides or snacks or breakfast things, and we have a good time and all—or whomever wants to, anyway—get our hair cut. Today we had a bit of concern because one of our hosts is not well and the doctors have not yet figured out why.

This afternoon we went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Of course, it's the "Reader's Digest condensed version" of the story and one big subplot is left out, but they have hit all the important parts of the story and it's excellent, albeit very dark. James did comment on the "industrial look" of things like the Quidditch Cup stadium and the scaffolding during the Triwizard events; he and I had both imagined it as being more wood-y and old fashioned. I guess the director wanted to put his personal "look" to the story. I did wonder about the scene where Harry found Barty Crouch lying unconscious in the forest—they just sort of dropped the rest of that story.

The big event of the day was going by the house, but you can read all about that here. Wow.


» Friday, November 18, 2005
The Trouble With Yahoo
We started out with webspace on Mindspring (before it became Earthlink), but like Topsy, the pages "just growed." My Remember WENN page was getting a tremendous number of hits at that time and, while I was still good on webspace, I was growing short on bandwidth (transfer limits) because Mindspring then limited you to 450MG.

James asked me what I wanted for my birthday that year and I said, "A Simplenet membership." For a small setup fee, I got unlimited webspace and unlimited bandwidth for $10/month. Now WENN and my ever-expanding Lassie site could grow.

Then Simplenet got absorbed by Yahoo. Some of my other friends on Simplenet went off to other providers, but I took advantage of a Yahoo deal. They told me that if I stayed with them I would have to get a domain name. But, if I remained with them, they would pay my yearly domain fee. They were offering enough webspace and bandwidth, so I took it.

In the last few months, I've been looking at other hosting providers, but being desultory about it.

As usual this year, I got notices from Network Solutions about it being time to renew my domain. The first time this happened I got nervous and contacted Yahoo. They assured me that as long as I kept my account with them, they would pay my domain registration. Since then I've gotten used to it. Yahoo evidently waits until the last minute to pay (like Kaiser Permanente after a hospital stay).

Then I got a notice from Network Solutions saying that this was my final notice and that they had contacted my Billing Contact (Yahoo) and not received a response, so I would be responsible for paying the registration or lose the domain. I contacted Yahoo posthaste and got a polite note back saying that he [the tech] had done a "Whois" on the account and said I was responsible for paying the domain registration.

Say what? I went to Network Solutions site and looked up my account information; sure enough, the Whois still says Yahoo is the billing contact. So I sent them a note with that information in it, as well as a copy of the letter—I still have it—saying that Yahoo would pay my domain registration while I remained a customer.

So far the response has been crickets chirping.

So I'm probably going to have to pony up for the domain fee, since right now I don't have time to transfer the domain to a new hosting company (it takes 7-10 days to transfer, according to my research, and the domain registration will be up by then). We've got the holidays and the house "in the fire," so to speak, so this really isn't the time anyway.

But I said once they quit paying for my domain registration, I was outta there. And I will be.


DVD Transfer Diary
I did Harvey and Heavenly Days (one of the Fibber McGee and Molly movies) this afternoon, and am now working on The Century, the Peter Jennings-hosted 12-part series about the 20th century. Right now I'm on part 3, about the Jazz Age.


Friday Five

1. What do you do for fun?

Read. Play with Pidgie. Make a web page. Play miniature golf. Go on road trips.

2. Is there a person from your past you would like to talk to again, even if it would be a potentially painful conversation?

My dad.

3. What is your favorite comfort food?

Rice in chicken soup. Or just plain old Italian bread.

4. What is your preferred form of self-expression? (Do you dance; or express yourself through music, conversation, etc.)


5. You just received $5000; what do you spend it on?

Furniture from Ikea. :-)


» Thursday, November 17, 2005
J.K. Rowling Interview
This is from 2001, but I had not read it before; she talks about several misconceptions about her life before Potter and also about who several of the characters and situations are based on:

"Harry Potter and Me" (BBC Christmas Special, British version), BBC, 28 December 2001, Transcript


DVD Transfer Diary
I did two last night, "my" version of Shirley Temple's The Little Princess (I say "my" because I cut out the ballet sequence. I love the music from most ballets, and I respect ballet dancers—they are not "creampuffs," as some jock might call them, by any means—but ballet bores me silly.) and The Trouble With Angels.

Like Eleanor and Franklin: the White House Years, I put Angels on a disk all by itself. I know I have seen a letterbox version of it (on TCM?) and hope they will show that again. I would have bought the DVD, but it was pan and scan. What's the use unless you only have a commercial-butchered copy?

I am hoping that since the nice souls who released the original Eleanor and Franklin released it as Eleanor and Franklin: the Early Years, that they might be planning to do White House Years as well. My copy is from WSBK-TV38 before we had a booster on the antenna and is exceedingly snowy.


Thursday Threesome

::Where's the Server?::

Onesome: Where's-- the main event for you and yours next Thursday? Are you staying in? ...or are you doing the "Over the river and through the woods" thing?

Dunno. We haven't received any invitations, so we'll probably go out. We always did that when I was a kid. Unfortunately you can't find anywhere anymore that actually serves a whole turkey; they just do...ugh...breast meat. (I miss the Roast House...) We won't go to Piccadilly, though; the one time we went there the meal was blah. I'd love to go to the Colonnade but there's probably a line out the door!

Twosome: the-- main course? If you had your way, what would be on your plate as you sat down for a Thanksgiving meal?

Turkey! All dark meat! Lots of giblet gravy! Just potatoes like we have them during the week, Yukon Golds, cut into bits, cooked until soft, with a little bit of margarine. Maple-flavored carrots and butternut "squish." Pumpkin bread from Bob Evans (ah, I wish) or pumpkin pie for dessert.

(You know last year when we were up in RI for Thanksgiving, we could not find a squash pie anywhere? I was so disappointed.

Come to think of it, we ought to go to Starbuck's. I remember they had pumpkin bread last year that was almost as good as the Bob Evans stuff. I remember getting some at Harvard Square last year with the gift card that one of my vendors gave me [it's okay; it was under $20]. Of course James and I ended up feeding about a quarter of it to the sparrows!

James is going to try making the Krusteaz pumpkin bread mix again tomorrow to take to Hair Day, but this time with pumpkin puree. The mix tastes very pumpkin-y before you bake it, but the pumpkin taste seems to dissipate once it's baked. It still tastes great, but like a spice cake, not pumpkin bread.)

Threesome: Server?-- Who is the main server at your get together? Does one person run the show? ...or do several people work together? Students: do you even get to go somewhere?

When we have parties we usually just do buffet style. James is the cook. I hate cooking. I will bake at Christmas.


» Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Down, Down, Down...
It's now 47°F! I hope Pidgie is warm enough by the time I get home. (Knew I should have turned the heat on.)

The high tomorrow will only be 50°F; I can wear my new coat.


Box Score 2
Make that a dozen boxes, plus a scruffy recycled paper box that can be used to take things to Goodwill.


DVD Transfer Diary
I'm starting to run out of gas for this effort, but I still have some things I really want to keep, like Harvey, Balto, "a Merry Garry Christmas," and the like. I think I'm down to about 40 tapes (and some of them have only little bits of things on them, like Rupert Holmes' appearance on CBS Sunday Morning), which is wonderful considering how many I started with! I also still have The Century to do, and am considering just keeping the Blake's 7 tapes (even if one of them is slightly damaged) until I figure out if I can afford to buy the Region 2 versions (or if I hold my breath for an American release).

Anyway, I have copied off:
  • Journey into the Unknown, a Museum of Television and Radio special about science fiction on television
  • Trekkies
  • the other three Lassie movies that aren't on DVD, Hills of Home, The Sun Comes Up, Challenge to Lassie


Ah, Blessed Cool
We had a front go through in the wee hours this morning—Willow started to bark and then a cannonade went off in the heavens—but the cold behind the front only started to see its way through after I had arrived at work: it was 64°F when I left the house and 53°F now. I can hope the cooler weather will help me feel better. It was so smothery last night it was nearly impossible to sleep and the lights are still hurting my eyes terribly today. I feel as if I am staring into the sun.

On a positive note they have delivered more photocopier paper and I have already snagged nine boxes by concentrated emptying efforts. "Xerox" boxes are the best for packing books; they are just of the right size to carry. When we went to the Miller Box Company when we were packing up my mom's house, they didn't have anything that was the approximate size, although the square "dish" boxes came close.


Something to look forward to in the spring: The Rumors Are True; Wild, Wild West is coming in 2006.

Majorly cool. Once it's out I can have a "Friday night in 1965" showing: an episode each of Littlest Hobo, Wild Wild West, and Hogan's Heroes. Although it will look just a "tad" different on a 36 inch color Panasonic as compared to an 18" black and white Magnavox.

I hope on this one, or at least somewhere on one of the sets is a tribute to Ross Martin. For me, Artemus Gordon was The Wild Wild West.

(Thanks to Ivan for the tip!)


» Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Tuesday Twosome

1. What's the prettiest part of your body? What's the least attractive part of your body?

My hair.
Can't decide whether it's my lumpy old nose or lumpy old boobs.

2. Have you met any celebrities? What celebrity would you like to meet?

By met, do you mean introduced to/know? Sure. Rupert Holmes, about half the cast of Remember WENN including Carolee Carmello (who took us backstage when Scarlet Pimpernel came to Atlanta), and Frank Gorshin when he was doing Say Goodnight, Gracie, I've also gotten autographs and talked to (back when they were free) from Isaac Asimov, several members of the Star Trek cast, and I had my picture taken with Tom Baker (but my camera jammed) and Christopher Reeve before his accident.
Either Hugh Laurie or Tony Shalhoub.

3. If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go? Where in the world would you never travel to?

Great Britain.
Anywhere I'd have to get shots for malaria and dysentery and/or have to sleep on the ground with bugs and snakes.

4. If you were stranded on a desert island, what 2 things would you take with you? If you were stranded on a desert island, who are 2 people you would want with you?

Water and food!
James and...darn, I'd say Rupert, but he'd be bored silly on a desert island.

5. Name the 2 most beautiful people that you know. Name the 2 most brilliant people that you know.

My mom was the most beautiful person I knew.
Rupert Holmes, of course. :-)


Got an e-mail from Jeff (lawyer of the estate). Things are proceeding. I've sent him a note back.

He mentions in the note that my cousin Anna is very ill. Not that I wasn't expecting it: Anna's cancer has spread to her liver and she was having a go at more chemo when I last spoke to her. But you have to know Anna. She was always strong...a bulwark. She had so many problems—severe psoriasis, other health problems, having to sell Avon to supplement the family income, at one point a sick mother and later a sick father—but she was always out there fighting. She raised her kids to be good people, helped keep food on the table, took care of innumerable grandchildren, and still found time for all the little things that make the house a home: good food, good conversation, a stable lighthouse in a world of storms.

And now the light is failing and it's hard to see...

I wish it were last year. All I'd be doing now is waiting for my car back and in eight days I would get to see my mother again.

I'm sitting at my desk and crying too often these days.


» Monday, November 14, 2005
I'm In a ::Sigh:: Mood Today
Maybe because I'm tired. Too warm last night and didn't sleep. It's already 74°F out; positively tropical. The cold was supposed to start tomorrow and now it's Wednesday, and may be proceeded by very stormy weather (which, of course, she adds cynically, will probably start during rush hour). The fluorescents are really, really hurting my eyes today. I feel like I'm staring directly into the sun and my eyes feel swollen and the letters on the computer screen occasionally wobble back and forth. Have a sore throat, too, and my tongue hurts. Mostly I'm just...sad. Can't go into the spare room without thinking of my mom. I'm unaccountably homesick for Woolworth's this year: I long for a time machine so I can step through their doors and smell the fresh popcorn and the coffee from the lunch counter and peppermint sticks and even wet wool coats. Maybe it's because Mom and I spent a lot of time at Woolworth's. We used to eat at the lunch counter quite a bit—way back my Aunty Terry used to work at the lunch counter and Mom was always partial to it after that. I used to have the open-faced turkey sandwich and a coffee milk, if they had any. The waitresses wore uniforms and were brisk and pleasant. Then we'd walk in the back to see the budgies. I always remember Mom picking up little things there: a spool of thread or a packet of needles or hair nets or bobby pins. We'd go out the back door if we needed to go to Garr's (the fabric store). At Christmastime I would buy all my stuffed animals new ribbons at Garr's.

We also patronized the Garden City Woolworth's a lot. Dad used to bowl in a league midweek during the summer and we'd go with him and then walk over to the stores when we first got there, sometimes all the way down to the Outlet (where the Linens'n'Things is now) and back. We'd stop in Woolworth's to visit the budgies at the back of the store, maybe pick up a pair of socks or a packet of underwear. I got all my new diaries at Woolworth's, and I'd buy a blank wall calendar there every year and draw my own pictures for each one of the months. Got my typewriter ribbons there, too. And they made the best popcorn: they had an "Air Popt" machine and made it fresh; the corn was always hot, just salty enough, and tender.

I'm glad there's a Borders there now, instead of something tedious like a clothing or a shoe store.

Maybe if I just had a good cry...


Monday Madness

Since I'm so sleepy, I'll pick "S."


1. Name one color.

Scarlet, as in "Mr. Cardinal" chipping on our shed roof and hollyberries

2. Name one song.

"Sleigh Ride" (I've just opened the Leroy Anderson CD I bought)

3. Name one movie.


4. Name one vehicle.

Surrey (with or without the fringe on top)

5. Name one food.


6. Name one household item.


7. Name one book.

Swing by Rupert Holmes


» Sunday, November 13, 2005
Alone on a November Sunday..., moods, and magic in Holiday Harbour.


» Saturday, November 12, 2005
Is That a Floor I See Before Me?
Check it out at Autumn Hollow


Upscale Soup
One of the things we haven't had lately is chicken cacciatore.

There are many ways to make chicken cacciatore, but we had found a quick, delicious way to do it several years ago, with a new soup Campbell's had come up with, Italian Tomato soup. It had basil and garlic in it, and cooked with the chicken, made a very tasty cacciatore indeed.

Then the Italian Tomato soup disappeared and we were disappointed. But a few months later Campbell's came out with something called Roasted Garlic and Tomato soup. It was pretty much the same thing and was, as with the previous edition, with the regular soups.

Almost a year ago, the Roasted Garlic and Tomato soup disappeared.

Grumble, growl, grump...

Lo and behold, we were in WallyWorld today and James came to a dead stop in the soup aisle and called me. Campbell's now has a line of Select soups that come in little cartons, not condensed. And there—for twice the price of the old cans—is a new version: Italian Tomato Soup With Basil and Garlic.

Yeah, we bought some. It's not like we have cacciatore every week, and we've missed it.

But ain't it funny how you can double the price of a product simply by sticking a "special" or "select" sticker on it?


A New Friend
Several months ago our friend Mike's dog Ollie passed away suddenly. Mike left himself time to grieve, but lately has been looking for a new friend.

Well, he found one this week:

I think my name is Rupert

Mike thinks his name is "Rupert."

Hi, Emma, what do you think? :-)

[N.B. Mike eventually named the dog "Charlie."]


» Friday, November 11, 2005
Ah, the Wonderful Scent...
...of a new never-even-been-read book!

I had put the new biography of C.S. Lewis, The Narnian, on reserve at the library earlier in the week although the website said they didn't even have a copy yet. What a surprise to get a phone call Wednesday saying it was in!

There was a string of small children filing in the library for story time when I got there, looked like first or second graders. Too cute!

Of course I couldn't go to the library without getting other books. I got Disney War, Christmas in Plains, and a Jakob Nielsen book about website usability. Just a well-rounded bout of reading.

Also continued with the DVD dubbing while cleaning out all three bathrooms and scrubbing their floors good and washing a load of clothes: "Once More With Feeling," from Buffy (I did "Dark Age" last night), the X-Files ep "War of the Coprophages," various short bits on X-Files and David Duchovny. Next up: A Christmas Carol with Patrick Stewart. I have apparently misplaced or recorded over A Wrinkle in Time and, sadly, I don't care. I can always get it on DVD.

I'm facing what may be a dilemma: I recorded all three of the later Waltons reunion movies. I loved the series, except perhaps for a few—or really one particular—episode in the last season, and the three NBC movies which followed on. These are the three CBS movies, which restored the original theme song, but they "updated" the family into the 1960s to show the Waltons' reactions to things like the Kennedy assassination and the moon landing, but the cast was only aged that the stories should have taken place in the 1950s. It was stupid to throw the timeline out just to have the family interacting with those particular milestones; since John-Boy was a writer, I would have much preferred to have seen him tackle something like blacklisting, which would have kept with the timeline and been appropriate, too! I really didn't like them.

And it looks like I'm talking myself out of keeping them, too.


Veteran's Day
Put out the flag this morning before I went anywhere. I've been thinking about my dad a lot today. Lots of traffic, so more people were off than state and government workers. I think the kids still went to school today (not sure; didn't go by the school), though, and the library was open.

Veteran's Day in Holiday Harbour.


Martinmas Day... Holiday Harbour.


» Thursday, November 10, 2005
Back on Time
The clock radio is okay. Why didn't it go off when James tested it? Well, because I reset the time wrong. I set it for 6 a.m. the night before when it was 6 p.m., so when it was 6 a.m. the clock thought it was 6 p.m. And the radio is okay. For some reason every once in a while when we have a storm or a weather change the station just gets out of tune. No one touches the tuner; it just goes out of tune. I don't know why.

As much as I like the retro one, I don't really want to spend the money now, so I'm not disappointed.


Blogging Keeps You Young, Perhaps?
Senior Citizen Bloggers Defy Stereotypes

My dad had always urged me to "get into computers" for future employment; he thought they were the "coming thing" even back in the 1960s when they still filled a room and used punch cards and you had to be good in math to be considered to use them. Mom wasn't a technophobe, but she never understood why I suddenly got into this new technology. (LOL. Maybe because by then it had to do with words and not with numbers and punch cards.) Anyway, for the last year or so she had been thawing and saying she wished she knew how to use a computer. We offered to buy her one and show her what to do (heck, I would have paid for her internet access if she wanted to do it), but she kept turning us down and I wasn't going to force it on her. Mom didn't like to have things forced on her.

So I wonder reading this article if she might have enjoyed blogging about something: her favorite movies, maybe, or flowers, or just memories...


30 Years Ago Today
Remember "'The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald"?


Yeah, I'm Pushing Christmas at Lithia Again... Holiday Harbour, but I really like this crafts show.

Thanks to Phyllis and Claudia for telling us about it!

(I wonder if they still do the Christmas craft show at Smoke Tree. A co-worker told me about it one year and I went; it was at a school, too, except instead of parking at the school you parked at the Sears Outlet Store on Mountain Industrial and took a shuttle bus there—it was that popular.)


Fifteen years today.

Supposedly the traditional gift for a fifteenth is "crystal," and the modern is "watches." Actually, I do need a new watch...but I believe I'm getting books for my anniversary. James bought 'em at Dragoncon: a two volume set about animated television programs. It looked yummy!

He's getting a book, too, and knows what it is because I had to stop him from buying it a few weeks ago with a coupon. It's Alton Brown's I'm Only Here for More Food, which is about baking. James loves Good Eats, and I have to admit I enjoy it myself: it's fun.


Out of Time
The hot spell has finally broken. When we went to bed last night, it was breathless and still 68°F. James turned the ceiling fan up. It was still warm when I used the bathroom at 3:30 a.m. Sometime after that, the dog began to bark for no reason. It's very possible there was thunder we didn't hear, because suddenly it turned cold. I had resettled myself under a folded blanket to keep warm and was pleasantly dozing and waiting for the alarm when James said "Aren't you going to work today?"

Eeeeek—it was 6:55! We had a power failure yesterday and, while I reset all the clocks including the clock radio, I forgot I needed to reset the alarms, too. So I did so, but when it got to 7:00 (when James gets up), the alarm didn't go off. I figured it just didn't "tick off" or something and scrambled instead to get dressed and dash to work.

When I got to a particularly long red light, I called James to make sure he'd gotten up. He said, "I think we need a new clock. I reset the alarm to 7:15 and it still didn't go off, and when I turned the radio on it sounded like an electric motor was grinding away inside it." He tried tuning the radio to no avail.

A few weeks ago I made a trip to Linens'n'Things and wrote this in our house blog:
"They had several things there I fell in love with, but it's frou-frou and will have to wait. One is a reproduction phonograph that looks like it's from the 40s on the outside, and does play 78 records (also has a radio, tape player, and CD player). I do want to play Mom's 78s some day. (On the inside the turntable is modern plastic, so it doesn't really look completely retro.) They also have a reproduction 30s radio (the one that looks like the Waltons had), a reproduction old phone (one that looks like the farm telephone on Lassie), and, oddly enough my favorite, a reproduction 50s radio with the streamlined styling that's also a dual alarm clock and a CD player."
Hmmn. Sounds like we'll be needing the latter sooner than we thought. Well, we have a number of 20 percent off coupons and a good dual alarm clock radio will costs us about $40 (with the coupon) no matter where we go.

So we'll check into it and see if it's what we need. Here's the unit. Cool, huh?


Thursday Threesome

Tempus Fugit: Of the Hours in the Week...::

Onesome: Of the Hours-in the week, which ones are your favorites?

During the week? The ones after 4:30 p.m. Actually, my favorite hours are at night. I like the dark. I'm awake and usually lively then, and there's no sun to give me a headache.

Twosome: In the-week there are 168 hours (it seems longer!); what bit of trivia do you hold that you'd like to share with the group?

Ah, it seems longer only when one is at work (or in the doctor's office). The weekends fly by like Mercury on his winged feet. How "trivial" do you need it to be? How about that November 3 was Ken Berry's birthday?

Threesome: Week-after week we roll along, pausing each Thursday to share some common time here; where else do you go on a weekly basis for a little diversion? (On line or off line; either is fine.)

Well, we used to go to trivia on Saturday nights, but they moved it to Sunday. It's an hour earlier, but we'd still get home between 10 and 10:30, which is too late for a work night. So...we go to Borders most of the time. But Christmas is upcoming and we hope to go to more fun places: the flea market and Tanger Outlet, or the Christmas exhibit at the Marietta History Museum or maybe the Christmas parade in Helen.


» Wednesday, November 09, 2005
North Georgia Craft Lovers: Christmas at Lithia This Weekend
This is a wonderful crafts show: the vendors assemble in booths or setups in the school foyer, hallways, and cafeteria. Everything from dolls to special sauces and foods to wooden crafts to clothing can be found. You can purchase food in the snack area.

Lithia Springs High School is at 2520 E. County Line Road, Lithia Springs, Georgia 30122. You take exit 41, Lee Road, off Interstate 20. If you are coming on I-20 West, you turn left, I-20 East, right. Drive a little over a mile and turn right on E. County Line Road.

There are usually signs that say "craft show" or "Christmas at Lithia" on the exits that point the way.

If the folks from Pampered Chef are there, be sure to buy a sliced Granny Smith apple with caramel sauce on top. Ordinarily I'm not fond of caramel sauce, but it tastes super on the apples!

(By the way, it isn't just "Christmas shit" pardon my language. Yes, there are lots of "too cute for words" children's clothing and stuff like that, but there are also useful things for kitchens, baths, etc. If you're looking for a nice Christmas gift, this may be the place.)


DVD Transfer Diary
Finished up the first two seasons of Red Dwarf last night. Again, this is another show that's on professional DVD, but I don't feel the need to get the "bells and whistles" pro version. As for the later series—I dunno. GPTV showed several of them, but I recall I didn't tape them after a while because they became increasingly bizarre and I didn't enjoy the "Starbug" episodes all that much.

I need to finish up my Christmas stuff; I think all I have left are the two Christmas Carols, George C. Scott's and Patrick Stewart's. But I never know; I keep finding things I didn't label on the later tapes, like Christmas; Behind the Traditions. Oh, and there's still "A Merry Garry Christmas," a nostalgic note back from when GSN actually showed old game shows rather than boring poker tournaments (sorry, Brent). It's four Christmas-oriented segments of the old I've Got A Secret, with Garry Moore, Bill Cullen, Betsy Palmer, and the rest of the gang, from the much-missed "Sunday Night in Black and White" programming they used to do.

(Betsy Palmer was at Dragoncon this year due to her appearance in some horror movies I've never heard of, but I just peered, delighted, at her and whispered to James, "Look, it's Betsy Palmer from I've Got a Secret." It's how I'll always remember her.)


» Tuesday, November 08, 2005
They're Back!
A Christmas display returns in Holiday Harbour.


Mary White
One of the things I dubbed off last night was the television movie Mary White. I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed this film based on the touching editiorial written by her father, William Allen White of the Emporia Gazette in Emporia, Kansas.

Every journalism student knows the story of William Allen White, the small-town newspaper editor who consulted with the national leaders of the day, a man who wasn't afraid to take a stand on controversial issues like strikers and the Ku Klux Klan. Another famous essay of his was "What's the Matter With Kansas?", but to many students, who read "Mary White" in their school readers, their memory of White is of a loving dad with an unconventional daughter bursting with life.

The University of Kansas' William Allen White School of Journalism has a detailed site on White, including some of his other editorials and photos, where you'll find a picture of the real Mary White. The television movie, starring Ed Flanders as White and Kathleen Beller as Mary, is out on DVD.


» Monday, November 07, 2005
Monday Madness

1. Sometimes I wish I could just sleep late and not have to fight traffic afterwards.

2. If I could take a long weekend to New York City, I'd be very happy.

3. The world would be a better place if more people would just be polite.

4. One of my greatest qualities is I'm stubborn; trust me, working with government purchase orders, one has to be.

5. The one thing about me that I need to work on is getting all this lard off; it's so hard to do anything.

6. Happiness is not having to worry.


I saw Lynn Truss' (the woman who wrote Eats, Shoots and Leaves) new book in Borders yesterday, the one about the death of manners. The concept was in action ten minutes ago, when some inconsiderate lout in the apartment complex behind us blared his horn. This was bad enough, but he was the third different inconsiderate lout of the morning, starting when the first one woke me up at 5:30.


» Sunday, November 06, 2005
Guess What We Did Today...
...yes, we've been Christmas shopping over in Holiday Harbour.


Title from the Past
Strange Report is out on DVD in Region 2!

NBC showed this as a summer series sometime in the early 1970s; I remember enjoying it very much, especially Anthony Quayle.

If it didn't get swiped while we were in the apartment, I still have the novelization upstairs.


» Saturday, November 05, 2005
Dreamin'... Ikea.


Cute and Fun Things
Between the errands we went on today, we went to the hobby shop. One of the guys there, Elton, used to have a Boston terrier named Blackie ("Boston Blackie," get it?). Blackie died of old age a few months back. Two weeks ago James came home with the news that Elton had a new Boston, named Rocky.

Got to see him today: utterly adorable. He's about ten weeks old, I think. At first he was sitting shyly in Elton's arms, then he started exploring the platform he was on. Just "awwww" altogether.

We had to run over to Trellis Oaks (check out Autumn Hollow—they've started putting in the forms), then we took a swing by the Buckhead Borders store because a book James wanted was there and we had the 30 percent off coupon. I was happy; I found a copy of the October issue of Best of British. Haven't seen one since July in RI.

Then we went to Ikea for supper. :-) Well, yeah, we looked at the furniture and stuff, too. They are decorated for Christmas and you can purchase some traditional Swedish Christmas decorations, including reproduction straw ornaments and red-painted wooden hearts, and also the Julbok, the Christmas goat.

When we got home we finally got to see Revenge of the Sith; we missed it when Mom was sick. Not bad. George Lucas still can't write romantic dialog for beans; when Anakin and Padmè are telling each other how much they love each other, all I could think about was the Remember WENN episode "I Now Pronounce You Man and Wife" where Hilary and Jeff get treacly with each other after his brush with death and are cooing to each other "I bet I love you more than you love me."


» Friday, November 04, 2005
I had a bunch of 30 percent off coupons for Borders, and they took one for the Entertainment coupon book.

We are stocked up on chicken again...I finally found the fall issue of Country (I can find an issue of Country anywhere, it seems, all year long, except when I want the October and December issues!)...found "a pressie" for issue of Quick & Easy was out...the lobster spread is back at Costco...I am dubbing off Christmas: Behind th Traditions and The City Mouse and the Country Mouse.


Well, Nuts...
Someone wrote to me about The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh and I was going to redirect them to Tom Hering's great site, with photos, theme song, etc., and it's gone. There are other Scarecrow sites, but none so good...and now of course I wonder: did one of the Disney lawyers get to him and he had to take it down?


» Thursday, November 03, 2005
DVD Transfer Diary
Catchup issue:

Sam Neill stuff: Fever (really bad HBO movie that's one of my guilty pleasures; co-stars are Armand Assante and Marcia Gay Hardin; very sleazy movie—features Joe Spano, formerly sweet Henry Goldblume on Hill Street Blues as a sadistic convict called the Junkman) and Enigma (with Martin Sheen), an interview Neill did for PBS after doing Reilly: Ace of Spies, a couple of interviews he did for The Piano. I'm copying some Jurassic Park specials now, and also have Making of Memoirs of an Invisible Man, one of my favorite Neill co-star roles.

International Velvet (unfortunately cut a few minutes for commercials); I'll probably put Mary White along with it (sort of a "strong female character who rides horses" disk).

Disney stuff: Dateline: Disneyland (the coverage of the opening of Disneyland in 1955), The Mickey Mouse Club Story, and Disneyland Goes to the World's Fair, which covers how they built my favorite Disney ride, the Carousel of Progress (at that time called "Progressland," sponsored by General Electric), plus It's a Small World, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, and the General Motors' dinosaurs.

[Later that night, 2005 :-) : Did do the Memoirs special, plus two Danny Kaye specials, one from AMC many years ago and an American Masters PBS presentation hosted by Hugh Downs.]


That's All We Need...
...more traffic: Atlanta Poised for Major Tourism Push ("The ATL?" Is this like "The WB"? Ew.)

I wish I could get more excited about this aquarium thing, but I've never been all that fond of fish. I saw the aquarium up in Boston while I was in school and the Living Seas exhibit at Disney World and that was enough. Maybe it was all that halibut and haddock I was forced to eat every Friday as a kid. I'd rather be on the ocean than look at fish in tanks.

Maybe they'll have some marine mammals. I love dolphins, sea lions, seals, manatees, and walruses.


Thursday Threesome

::I Can't Stand Being Sick!::

Onesome: I Can't - What little thing can't you do that everyone else seems to be able to do?

Ride "barf rides." (Oh, and sit through parts of The Princess Bride without being bored.)

Twosome: Stand - What issue is it that you take a big stand on?

Child molesters. They should be worse than shot.

Threesome: Being Sick - Are you prone to getting sick or are you one of those people that can go years in between illnesses?

Oh, I wish I never got sick. Unfortunately the allergies give me a low resistance and I have problems with migraines and arthritis and acid reflux, too.


» Wednesday, November 02, 2005
All Souls Day
Going a'souling in Holiday Harbour.


This Is My Life, Rated
Take the Rate My Life Quiz

A tip of the hat to vampry


» Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Finally, the Colors of Fall...
...but they show up better on a cloudy day: Holiday Harbour.


Tuesday Twosome

1. Have you ever said "I Love you" and not meant it? Has someone told you "I Love you" and not meant it?

No, I wouldn't ever tell anyone I loved them unless I really did. And no, they didn't.

2. Do you believe in love at first sight? Do you believe in karma?

I think love at first sight can happen, but it's not as common as the books say it is. It's a great literary device, though. I don't know about karma: it would be nice to think that all the dictators and child molesters and killers out there got theirs in appropriate ways, but I don't think it happens.

3. What person do you trust the most? What person do you trust the least?

Well, James, of course. Least? Any dictator of any country and any guy who has ever beat up his wife or kids and then come whining back saying "Oh, I promise, I'll never, ever do it again." A few of them have changed. Most of them are like politicians, lying pond scum.

4. What type(s) of music do you like? What type(s) of music do you dislike?

I like Big Band, some New Age, Christmas music so long as it is not rap or loud, oldies (50s-60s stuff). I don't like rap or hip-hop or loud rock or anything screechy or deafening.

5. Who is your celebrity crush? Who do you think is your celebrity look-a-like?

I won't tell. And I don't think I look like anybody (but I always wanted to look like Christine McKenna from Flambards).


Well, That's Good...
It was quiet last night.

I mean, I thank God there wasn't a mass orgy of window breaking and pumpkin smashing. When I was a kid we had our windows soaped or scrawled with wax and our trash can tossed around. Here we had our door egged at least once and there have been some smashed pumpkins at other homes.

But we usually have a parade of larger kids come through the neighborhood after seven o'clock and nary a sign was to be seen. Usually some joker manages to shoot off firecrackers, and you hear laughter and hollering for a while and Willow bristles up and barks at it. Heck, after I got home nobody even had a loud radio on.

James commented that the street was dark, even with everyone's porch light on, and he was right. When all those lights go out, it's like deep black velvet out there.

Maybe everyone just found a Hallowe'en party to go to and was happy instead of being destructive. That would be a definite plus.

I was thinking last night as I sat by the door that this Daylight Savings time extension starting in 2007 is going to play hob with trick or treating. In New England and everything around that latitude, even on DST at six p.m. it will be dark. But here in Georgia and especially further south it will still be light at that time. I know the parents of small children like to take them out early. Will they wander about at the same time, in the light? Will parents take them out later?