Saturday, January 02, 2010

2729 I think I've always hated winter.

Saturday, January 2, 2009

Life is extinct on other planets because their scientists
were more advanced than ours.


I often wonder if anyone runs things past someone else these days. It's long been obvious that there are no proofreaders. It looks like some kid somewhere in a back office writes copy for the public, and puts it out with no review.

Today's example: There's an appetite reducing bar on the market called Fullbar. The inventor does his own commercials. I cannot believe that absolutely no one has told him that it sounds like his product is FUBAR.

(Am I the only one to find that funny?)

And then there's the car dealership running a half-price sale. The ad is emblazoned in several places with "The price you see is 1/2 the price you pay!"

And this amusing bit of spam, which leads me to believe not only that English is not their first language, but that they don't know anyone who speaks English:
"The new year. A new day.Are you still wearing that piece of old clothes?Are you not buy new clothes for worrying about?Are you not enough grade for the hesitation?Are you for pocket money to worry about?Now I can tell you. You can put aside the idea of everything.Here, I introduce you,Exclusive new. Exclusive design. Factory Outlet. No profit. New Year's sell-off.For the New Year. All of our products on sale."
"Not enough grade for the hesitation"? I can't even figure out what they were trying to say.


I woke up to two inches of snow again. Annoying because I have to decide whether or not to do something about it....


It's been cold outside the past week, but I haven't felt it much. New Year's Eve I was wearing the Assuit dress, which is net with tiny strips of silver folded into the net. The net doesn't stop air, and when cold air blows past, the metal gets cold fast, and yet I had to move my car at one point during the evening (blocking the fire trucks), and I went out without my coat, and it didn't bother me at all. Running errands during the day I've been leaving my coat open in 20 degree temps, and I've been fine. Strange, considering that I'd been cold in the house only the week before. Hormonal, I guess.

It all reminded me of some October business trips back when I was working. The Company always put me in good (but old grand dame) hotels in New York City, and every single one of them had a rule about heat - they didn't turn the heat on until November 1. Period. Stone cold radiators. It didn't matter what the weather was.

I froze in the rooms.

Space heaters were considered a fire hazard, so I couldn't have one. It got to the point where I carried 100 watt bulbs in my suitcase, and changed all the bulbs in the room, and then left them on all day and all night. I'd also fill and refill the tub with hot water, and run the shower full hot for as long as I could stand the steam in the room. What the hotels may have saved in heating costs, they lost in electricity.

It works, by the way.

2728 Roosting Eggs Update

Saturday, January 2, 2009

"A friend of mine says that science is an even better means of control than Christianity, because if you don't believe in Christianity, you're simply doomed to burn in a hell you don't think exists, whereas if you don't believe in science, you're presumed to be stupid."
-- Derrick Jensen, in "The Sun", July 2000 --


My indy movie group now has 21 members.

The singles group has 21, of whom 15 have indicated an interest in attending our first meetup on 1/12 (4 definite Yes, 11 Maybe; 13 women, 2 men) . Wow. Pretty good. The Maybes might turn to No as we get closer to the date, but that's still pretty good. The only thing that's a tad disappointing is that only 5 members are male, and of those, one lives very far north, and two very far south, so I doubt we'll see much of them. We gotta get more local males.

Friday, January 01, 2010

2727 A Surfeit of Doggie Bags

Friday, January 1, 2010

The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.
-- L. P. Hartley --


In my refrigerator right now, I have doggie bags containing:
  • one quarter of a barbecued chicken
  • half a baked potato
  • six BBQ spare ribs
  • half a huge pastrami reuben sandwich, w. sauerkraut
  • a rich Turkish chicken & vegetable stew
  • another Turkish dish with tender chicken over yogurt-coated bread cubes with an oniony/vegetably gravy and rice
I've already eaten the mac & cheese Daughter sent me home with. The rest is aging out. Gotta eat it all soon! I shouldn't go out for dinner for five days, at least.

2726 Happy New Year

Friday, January 1, 2010

People do not do things for logical reasons.
People find logical reasons to do things they want,
and the more intelligent the people,
the better the reasons they come up with.
-- Harold Nickel, Mensa Bulletin, May 2000 --


I did go out last night, but all day it was a tossup.

By noon yesterday, there was (were?) two inches of fluff in the driveway. Two inches is no problem getting up or down the drive. Three inches is difficult, possibly dangerous. Four inches is impossible. The snow had stopped, but more was expected during the night. I checked five different weather prediction sources, and the totals expected by this morning ranged from two to six inches.

So I called the plowman and paid $55 to have two lousy inches plowed. That way, maybe I'd be able to get up the drive at 2 am if three more fell. If it was four more, I could be in big trouble, since I can't leave the car on the road - I have to at least get it past the plow hump and into the driveway.

I was also very angry because the town plow hit my mailbox again, and this time they sprung the side away from the base, and now it won't close at all.

All very discouraging. But in the evening I got dressed anyway, and by damn I looked so good I didn't want to waste it, I'd hate myself if I did, so I went. I figured that if things got complicated, I'd figure it out later.

The party was in Connecticut, an 80 minute drive. It was sponsored by several Meetup singles' groups, at a fire hall, and the cost when I'd registered was only something like $45, which is really cheap for a New Year's Eve party, so I wasn't expecting much.

It was amazing! There were probably 160 people. The male/female distribution was good. The announcement had said "dressy casual, but formal is ok too." There were lots of sequins. I never saw so many skin-tight dresses all in one place! (Um, someone should tell women that when you have back rolls, skin tight is not a good choice.) And lots of pushed-up pouter pigeon breasts. Me, I was pretty well covered in my Assuit dress (the mid-priced soft one, with real silver), but still intriguing because I wore it over a spaghetti-strap long leotard.

The food was terrific: chicken in a beautiful mushroom sauce, tender roast beef carved on command, crab casserole in oyster shells, interesting breads, salad, green beans with pimento, and more. The bar was all free, and it wasn't just wine and beer. They had everything. I had one of my favorite sweet liquors, and they filled the glass to the top. The band was really good. The lead guitarist and singer was a red-headed kid that didn't look more than 16, but he was incredible. He had performed with and was a protege of Les Paul.

I sat at a table with four bawdy broads slightly younger than I, and a younger man. I enjoyed them all.

About 10:30 they did the bachelor auction (the auction was to benefit Ann's Place, a cancer support center). The guy I had my eye on wasn't there, which was disappointing, but there were about 10 others. They were going for like $25 to $75, it was sort of pitiful, so I bought two. I haven't decided whether I'll actually collect on the dates. I consider it a donation.

They had a bunch of other things for auction, too. They went at rock bottom prices because they had not been advertised, so no one had done the research or come prepared to bid on them. There were fancy watches, and jewelry. There were huge framed concert posters that went for maybe $50. The auctioneer was almost crying. "This is a PROOF! A PROOF of the famous poster that goes for $3,000! This is worth twice that!" Well, what's a proof?

I accidentally bought a Gibson Epiphone SG Special electric guitar, that had been signed by Les Paul on his 94th birthday, two months before he died, along with a really fancy soft case, and two photographs of Les Paul signing it. I haven't the faintest idea what I'm going to do with it. The red-headed kid played it after I bought it, and kissed it goodbye. Does anyone know the proper way to store it? Should I loosen the strings?

I probably ought to find a buyer for it. If I wait a few years, it might go for more, but knowing me, I might injure it between now and then.

[Later - I found something online: If storing for more than 4 months, release some but not all of the tension from the strings, and store it in a living-area closet, not an attic or basement.]

At 11:30ish it started to snow, heavily, big flakes. I started to worry, because I would be heading north. But the snow stopped with only a dusting.

At midnight I followed a tradition from my youth, and looked for the oldest guy in the place to kiss. The guy had to be nearing, if not over, ninety, a tiny guy with curly white hair, and I planted one on his cheek. Bad idea. He followed me around after that, kept kissing me on the cheek, and pressed his business card on me. (He's a medical doctor.)

Also after midnight, I finally danced with two of the bawdy broads, and I finally got some male attention. Too late, fellas. Yeah, I gots me some moves, but if that's all that interests you, that doesn't go far.

Got home a little after 2 am. No snow on the driveway.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2725 In Proportion

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Good judgment comes from experience,
and experience comes from bad judgment.


I've been scrounging around in boxes of old photos, and found this one - me at 20.

2724 Mysterious cold draft

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

It's not enough to come up with a good idea;
you have to come up with the good idea at the right time.
Many people with a good idea present it too soon,
before anyone is ready to accept it,
and then drop the idea when they meet resistance.
When the world is ready, someone else puts forth the same idea and gets all the credit.
(Worse, nobody will remember that you had it first.)
-- Me --


It's so cold in the house today. I don't know why some days feel colder in here than others, regardless of the temperature outside. Worse, the thermostat is reporting the same temp as always, so it doesn't make any sense. Maybe my body lies.

There's a cold draft in the den. Several years ago a bird hit the double paned Andersen crank-out window in the den and broke the outside pane. I had a glass replacement place in the village replace the glass. I assumed that they'd done a good job because, well, that's what they DO, and there's never been any steam or cloudiness between the panes, but maybe the thermal properties were lost. There's cold rolling off the window, but not that much, not as much as the palpable draft. I can't figure it out.

Maybe someday when I get the stacks of crap away from the outside wall I'll find a racoon-sized hole in the wall and the mystery will be solved.

2723 Tying up the threads

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

In Scott Turow‘s Burden of Proof, Sandy's daughters
describe his love life as “a tom-tom network of females
wailing over his shortcomings late into the night.”

Reminds me of a lot of guys I've dated.

On Monday I drove to NJ to visit Daughter. Her wrapped Christmas present to me was a scarf she had crocheted, and scented soap. You have no idea how happy the scarf made me - not so much the scarf itself, but that she is learning to crochet!

It IS a big deal.

I have very few skills, but one is needlework. Knitting, crocheting, embroidery, netting, lacemaking, tatting, sewing. I don't do it often anymore, and I don't have the best sense of color and texture, but I'm good at the craft. I can't cook, am a miserable housekeeper, and I don't entertain. I didn't have much beyond needlework in the traditional feminine skills to pass on to a daughter. And back when, she flatly rejected it. I tried to teach her, and she would have none of it. Total rejection of even the concept. It felt like a rejection of me.

Nowadays, Daughter likes to cook, and she makes it look easy. She keeps a clean house, and doesn't tolerate dirt (a bit of clutter, but I don't think I could get along with anyone who couldn't tolerate some clutter - it's life being lived!) And she entertains easily and often. She grew all that herself, it was nothing I could teach her or pass on to her, and I'm proud of her.

Now my daughter is learning crochet, and what she gave me for Christmas is connection.

Ok, weird. But it's there. It's a big deal to me.

She may decide it's not for her and quit, but that's ok. She's a different person. But she picked up a crochet hook and tried it, and I am very happy.


I drove home yesterday, and then went to a movie with my meetup group last night. (And I wore Daughter's scarf over my head. It's very warm, and the color is perfect for my hair and face.)

There were supposed to be four of us at the movie, but the fourth didn't show up, so it was just me and two guys whom I already know from Mensa. This is the group that has 20 members. I'm hoping that after New Year's it'll pick up a bit.

Last night's movie was "The Private Lives of Pippa Lee" (Becs, you ought to see it if you can find it), and next week I've scheduled "The Road".

My singles' group now has 14 members. Our first outing is a dinner on January 12. I hope the attendees have some thoughts about what to do next, because I have no flippin' idea.

Tonight is a dinner at a Turkish restaurant in Albany. Tomorrow night is a party in Connecticut, with a buffet, band, and bachelor auction. (I hope to buy me one.)

Friday I start getting serious about cleaning up around here.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

2722 Biting Off Too Much?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

"Cats": With cats, one rule is true. Don't speak until you're spoken to.


Quick update - my movie meetup group has 20 members, and the over-50 singles group has 8, even though it went public just last Friday. I gotta get organized! (Tuesday update - singles' group now at 11.) (Wednesday update - 15.)

I feel like an over-enthusiastic hen whose eggs all hatched at once. Or as an old friend used to say, "... whose eggs all came home to roost."

2721 Rearview Mirror

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A guest for a while sees a mile.
-- Jewish Proverb --


I may be missing for the rest of the year. I might visit here, or at others' blogs. I might not. No big deal. I'm just going to be very busy.

In the meantime, enjoy this from, by Scott Emmons, found at


2720 RIP

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A ditch can't be filled with dirt from its sides.
-- Jewish Proverb --


Every once in a while I'd search the internet for Ex#1. I never found him. My late husband died in my arms, and Ex#2 is living in NJ, but I didn't know what happened to Ex#1.

Having no assets, our divorce in 1968 was very quick and nasty. We made a deal that whoever remarried first would buy the other a steak dinner. He remarried within six months, a woman with two children.

In the mid-'80s, his Catholic wife wanted a church wedding, so he contacted me and I dutifully filled out the forms and wrote an essay on why we married, and why I left, and the Catholic church, after three iterations, granted an annulment. It was very difficult to get it right, and brought up a lot of stuff better forgotten, and I was left angry because he never thanked me. (Probably because I refused to help pay for it.)

Lately, I've been wondering how things worked out for him. Besides, he owes me a steak dinner!

Today I heard about the Social Security Death Index (through a secret on PostSecret,, and I checked it.

Robert Morris Derrick, DOB October 18, 1941, Pennsylvania resident, DOD November 24, 1997.