Saturday, November 07, 2009

2654 Love at first sight?

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Me: To define a career goal is to define your limits.


When I was younger, I was often asked if I believed in love at first sight. It seemed to be one of those topics that turned up a lot. Either nobody wonders about it any more, or my social circles have changed away from those concerns.

Or maybe everybody else has given up and is afraid to think about it. I don't know.

Oddly, I still want to explore the topic.

I don't believe in love at first sight, but only because of the word "love". Real love grows with time and understanding. I absolutely do believe in a strong reciprocal instant attraction, a "click", a magnetism, a chemical reaction, a lightning bolt. A sudden infatuation. In my experience, it's been a powerful indicator that there's the possibility of something lasting there. It really is at first sight, before even meeting or speaking.

It's when you look up and see someone, and maybe your eyes meet, and you both know instantly that there's some kind of soul connection.

It has happened to me several times, and although some of them didn't work out, most did, and the connection was real. What's really funny is that in most cases, the guy wasn't "my type".

The first: John. I had transferred into a new school in first grade. I was smaller than everyone else, and shy. On the first day, the boy sitting in front of me turned around, circled my wrist with his fingers, and said, "She's tiny!" Our eyes met, and I've been in love with him ever since. Until I moved to Canada at the end of fourth grade, he was my in-school companion and protector. I still think about him. I've tried to find him on the internet, but he has a very common name, and it's next to impossible.

The second: Obie. I lived on a military base during high school. Obie's father transferred in during December of my junior year. Obie was a senior. He had a deep Louisiana bayou accent, and was kind of awkward and funny-looking, and WAY too religious, but the first time our eyes met, we knew we had something special. We were like brother and sister (we argued and fought constantly, but there was deep respect and affection) for the next fifteen years, by phone and letter, until he died in an automobile accident. Thirty-four years gone, and I still love and miss him.

The third: Jay. I walked into a friend's office at The Company, and there was a man sitting, intent, at her computer, and as I walked in he froze, staring at the screen, and said "Oops", and I fell in love. I hadn't even seen his face. All I had was a 3/4 rear view, and I fell in love with a patch of softly curled hair behind his left ear. He was newly married. We were no more than best friends for the next eight years, when his limping marriage finally fell apart. Everyone else knew how we felt about each other before we did.

The fourth: I went to a Mensa gathering near Boston three years ago, looked up, and met the eyes of a guy across the room, and knew. Again, he was not someone I would consciously choose. He was ten years older than I, bald, with the body of a past bodybuilder. Not my type. But he fascinated me. During the weekend I did not attempt to talk with him alone, but every time I looked toward him, he was looking at me, and he did make a point of sitting or standing near me several times, like he was hoping I would say something (shy much?). I was impressed with his contributions to table conversation. When I got home, I looked him up. He's married. I still wonder.

The fifth: The Man. Another Mensa gathering. First sight across a wide round table kicked me in the gut. If I made a list of all I want in a man, The Man would be 180 degrees off on almost every item except the body. I think his body is perfect, but I didn't see that at first, across the table. All the rest is 180 off. (Well, not all, but some things are pretty basic. He says I also diverge wildly from his usual taste in women.) He fascinated me at first sight, and I'm still fascinated.

If nothing else, the example of The Man proves that it's not a shallow "oh, he's perfect" thing, and it's not pheremones. Jay proves it's not the eyes or face. John and Obie show that it's not a sexual attraction. It really does feel like a "Fate" thing. A soul match thing. That doesn't mean happy ever after, but it's a very good start.

Notice that my first two husbands and the other fifty or so guys I've dated or flirted with didn't make the list. I've found that any guy who has to "grow on me" eventually turns into a fungus.

2653 Half sick

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Education does not produce intelligence;
knowledge does not convey the means to use it intelligently.


I almost didn't go to the movie last night because all afternoon I felt yucky, and by evening I was sure I had a fever. I took my temperature, and it was 98.6. So I went to the movie.

Today the back of my nose feels dry, and I have a hot spot on a tonsil, but I've had that several times over the past two months and nothing ever came of it, so I went to lunch anyway.

I'm beginning to worry that maybe I'm a flu carrier - I'm fighting off infection constantly without ever getting actively sick - and maybe I'm spreading it everywhere I go. Like Typhoid Mary. Swine Silk? I haven't heard of anyone I've come into contact with getting sick, though.

I heard on the news that a pet cat has been diagnosed with H1N1. Some reporters are getting all excited that maybe this means that the virus is mutating faster than they thought, and therefore the vaccine would be useless. The CDC shrugs it off, on the theory that many diseases are shared with pets, it doesn't require mutation, not a big deal.

I am a bit worried because dogs and cats have a higher body temperature than humans (100.5 to 102.5), and pathogens usually multiply within only a narrow temperature range, and that's why we share few diseases with our pets. It's also why we get fevers and chills - the higher and lower temperatures are designed to make our bodies inhospitable to the pathogens. So the worrisome part is that if the virus is happy with cat temperatures, then if I get it, a fever isn't going to help a whole lot.


I went to lunch in Pawling today, with an over-50 professional women's Meetup group. There were seven of us. I liked the bunch, even the one women I'd met before, the one who takes over conversations. I don't think she's at all aware she does it.

Like, one woman will be talking about the time she blah blah, and she'll say one word that kicks off a thought in the other woman's head, and the other woman will loudly interrupt the middle of a sentence with, "Oh, yeah, that's like when I blah blah blah", and the first woman never does get to finish her story.

That really bugs me.

I have a way to handle it. I look at the second woman, listen until she seems to be finished, and then with no comment or reaction to her story, as if it had no import, I turn back to the first woman, and prompt her, "You were saying..."

Unfortunately, I seem to be one of the few who even notices. Everyone else usually takes off from the second woman, allowing her to have completely hijacked the topic.


Some people are upset that some large corporations have received the flu vaccine, while hospitals, clinics, and doctor's offices are still waiting. The way some news outlets are presenting it, they make it sound like the administration is showing favoritism to Wall Street firms, who already got handouts.

Those reports, calculated to fan flames, to discredit others, really piss me off.

First of all, the handouts began during the past administration, remember? This administration has been trying to stem the handout tide. For example, CIT was allowed to go bankrupt (filed last Sunday) after begging in vain for federal assistance for many months.

Second, corporations getting flu vaccines early is nothing new! I don't know when it started, but it's been going on for at least 35 years that I know of. When I worked for The Company, any time the seasonal flu looked like it might be especially widespread or nasty, The Company got the vaccine. Lots of it. Early. And they gave it to anyone who wanted it, not just high risk people.

The reason (sounds like an excuse to me) is that the country is weakened if commerce stops, so it's important to keep the workforce on its feet.

So nobody's showing any more favoritism than has been shown in the past. It's just that it suits people to throw mud this year.

I don't like it when people throw mud. Especially mud that they may have had a hand in creating, or that they ignored until an innocent target came along. We used to call those people bullies.

Friday, November 06, 2009

2652 Fellini in Woodstock

Friday, November 6, 2009

A lot of people you hire with good paper education
can't actually do the work you hire them for.
They learn while doing the job or they don't learn at all.


I watched a Frederico Fellini film, "Amarcord" (1974) this evening, with six other people, strangers, in Woodstock, in an ordinary living room, on a huge screen, something like maybe 6' by 12'.

There was no real story, no cohesive plot, no apparent point to be made, but it was good nonetheless. There were glimpses of many lives in a village in Italy over the course of a year, circa 1920s or 30s.

One had the sense that these same stories, the archetypes, had been repeating in different combinations and variations for as long as the village had existed. My comment was that I wished I were an English composition teacher. I would assign each student a character, show them the film, and then ask that they write their character's backstory. The town slut, Volpine(?), would have been an interesting study, for example. Or the leonine school teacher, what is her life like? Or the old count and the ancient countess.

Gee, there were twenty or more movies in this one 2-hour film....

I spent most of the evening with a 70-pound dog in my lap. Which was good, because the host had turned the heat off during the movie because the blower made too much noise, and otherwise I would have frozen. I had a cold draft hitting my right side. There's ice outside tonight. 28 degrees F.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

2651 Numb

Thursday, November 6, 2009

You can chill with the owls at night,
or you can fly with the eagles in the morning,
but likely not both.


I was driving to a dinner in Southern Columbia County this evening, and changed the radio station, right into the middle of what appeared to be an interview. A guy was saying he had reached into the refrigerator for a beer, and he couldn't tell if the beer was cold or warm. Then he said he was worried and didn't know what to do because he didn't have insurance.

I got all upset for him. If your hands have gone so numb that you can't tell if a can is cold or warm, that's serious! He should see a doctor or go to the hospital immediately, insurance or not.

Then the story continued. It turned out to be insurance against warm beer he was talking about (?!), and it was a Coors commercial. The mountains on Coors cans turn blue when the beer is cold.

Cute. But does anyone really think that's a selling point? Is anyone going to switch beers for that? Yeah, maybe a single can, just to see it change. But if people switch to Coors because they can tell it's cold by the blue mountains, it's not their hands that are numb, it's their HEADS!

2650 A certain lack of focus

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Science is neither a method nor a body of knowledge.
It is a body of changing, learned opinion, aspiring to be true.
There are certain facts about nature and history;
our grasp of those facts is constantly changing.
-- George Santayana --


Dinner with Mensans last night. I screwed up figuring my portion of the bill, had to apologize this morning to others who contributed more money to cover the bill, and I feel like an idiot, especially after thinking that my neighbor at dinner was a bit of an idiot.

Because there were six of us, the tip, $23, had automatically been added to the tab, and the woman sitting next to me said, several times, that rather than figure out individual portions of the tip, we should just split it, at $3 each. I pointed out, several times, that 6 times $3 is not $23.

We do have a couple of gossips in the group, who will talk about anyone who isn't there. I often wonder what they say about me. Anyway, (I'll call her Prof) Prof came up. Prof is a thorn in the side to some of the group. They wish she'd go away. They don't know how to deal with her. In the middle of the latest complaints, she walked in. She wasn't on the list of expected attendees. She'd been at the Vassar campus across the street and just decided to drop in.

She has a doctorate in something like biochemistry. She comments knowledgeably on a variety of topics. She's a really nice person, not a nasty bone in her body, relentlessly cheerful and chatty, and wants to do her part for the group. However, she's mentally somewhere off in left field, and she doesn't seem to "get it". Ever.

Prof schedules lectures, and panel discussions, and documentary movie nights, and wonders why nobody from the group goes to them. All the group seems to be interested in is food, games, and field trips, and she doesn't get it. I feel sorry for her, because she keeps on trying.

Anyway, she was talking last night about how she has hit several deer, three I think, in the past three years, and how she's afraid of hitting another. Also about sliding on slick roads, and a few other accidents. (She used to wear very thick glasses, and wears none now after having had laser eye surgery a few years ago. I think she's still half blind and doesn't realize it.) So she "never drives over 45 mph", and always 5-10 mph under the speed limit everywhere.

A few minutes later, she was complaining about tailgaters. People are always climbing on her tail. She hates how their headlights behind her make it even harder to see deer on the side of the road.

She really doesn't get it.

Nobody else paid any attention to her last night. She'd be talking and someone else would interrupt as if she wasn't speaking, start up another topic, and everyone would turn away from her. Since she was next to me and I felt sorry for the way people were treating her, I did pay attention to her. And then something occurred to me. I noticed that she ordered an appetizer without realizing it was not an entree. The deer thing. The getting lost driving. The dividing the tip thing. Some other stuff.

Like when she schedules events in the newsletter or online group, she ALWAYS gets the date wrong (right day of the week but wrong number, or vice-versa), or leaves out something important, like the time, or the location. Always! Every. single. time. without exception.

Others think she's stupidly oblivious. I think she's too smart, and her problem is not stupidity, but a lack of focus leading to obliviousness. She's scattered. Not an ADD-type thing, just no focus. Every thought is a skim across the top, without ripples, without focus.

Her mind works like flat stones skipping across a frozen pond.

I wonder if her near blindness through most of her life contributed? She spend most of the past 50 years with her nose 2 inches from a book page. Can straining to focus in one area contribute to a lack of focus everywhere else?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

2649 Trivial trivia

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Preserve wildlife - pickle a squirrel.


There is a trivia "contest" on-line at
The way it's set up, you identify yourself as male or female, and a tally is kept for one of the two gender-composed teams.

It's kind of fun, but I got a bit annoyed because when you get a question wrong, they don't tell you what the correct answer was, and because a few of the "correct" answers were WRONG!

For example, there was a question about how many different types of twins there are. The choices offered were something like one, two, three, and some large number. "One" is of course obviously wrong. I suspect they wanted "two": identical (one egg, one sperm, then split) and fraternal (two eggs, two sperm). The large number is wrong because although there are many other designations (conjoined, parasitic, mirror, superfecundate, etc) they are all subsets of the basic one/two eggs with split/no split.

I answered "three", because doctors have recently recognized a third rare type - semi-identical (one egg, fertilized by two sperm, then split).

Of course, they declared me wrong.

Hey! Is this a trivia contest or what! I am penalized because I know trivia?

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

2648 Foiled again

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Alas poor Kiroy, I knew him backwards.


I am desperate to wash my hair, and then get to the grocery store, and vote, and a few other things. I planned to shower and wash hair at 12:30. Exactly at 12:30, the phone rang, and it was Butch, my gutter man. He said he'd be here in a half hour to clean the gutters.

It's now 2:40, and he's still up there on the roof, and my hair is not washed. It has never taken him more than an hour to clean the gutters. I don't understand.

Now it's 3:05. He just left. Onward to what's left of my day. Gah!

Monday, November 02, 2009

2647 The grouch strikes again

Monday, November 2, 2009

The trouble with political jokes is that they get elected.


Elections tomorrow, and I've been getting a political call per hour today. All taped, so I can't ask questions. I listen for about three seconds and hang up.

Which is probably why I've about hit my limit this evening on "furmiliar". The word is "FAMiliar", folks! Gah!

2646 HRT Oops

Monday, November 2, 2009

Interviewee I-missed-the-name, in the "Kingston Freeman":
"If prayer is out of the public schools, it is simply because
those in attendance have chosen not to pray.
Individual freedom to pray is still intact.
What is rightfully missing is the authority to force prayer
on those who do not wish to participate."


If you want a shock, do an internet search on HRT lung cancer.

This is one of my complaints - that everyone wants to blame all lung cancer on smoking, and therefore have no sympathy for suffers. "You did it to yourself". Nope. There are many factors, including pollution, plastics, and now, it turns out, hormones.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

2645 Hallowe'en mask?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A totalitarian government tolerates free speech only as long
as it does not offend those in power.
A free society tolerates speech even when it offends.


There are many "IP address hiders" out there. You can go to a website through one of them, like "" for example, and it will disguise your IP address and physical location so, supposedly, no one knows it was you who visited.

They don't really work. Not as well as they pretend to, anyway. Even though the IP address is different, and maybe they even have a different "came from" city and state, they still let your operating system, browser, support levels, time zone, and other information through. I use four different sniffers, and even if one is fooled, they aren't all fooled. There are plenty of clues, so you can't hide as well as you might want to.

Besides, it ticks me off when someone visits in disguise, even if it is Hallowe'en. I have to wonder why the subterfuge.

If it's that you don't want an employer or the owner of the computer to know you were here, leave a comment, so I know you aren't hiding from ME!

Be honest and open, or stay away, ok?

2644 Nothing

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Anything that says "healthy" I stay away from.
Giving up butter, for instance, means that
in about two years you will be covered in dandruff.
-- Julia Child --


Nothing day today. Clear up some of the clutter, clean out the car, hem some clothes, pay some bills. Maybe even catch up on some correspondence.