Friday, March 19, 2010

2904 Equinox eggs

Friday, March 19, 2010

"With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
-- Steven Weinberg --


I stood an egg today. That's an ordinary raw egg, still cold from the refrigerator, nothing done to the egg, on an ordinary plate, nothing done to the plate. (I use a plate because it wants a smooth surface, and if it falls and rolls, the lip will keep it from hitting the floor.)

"Experts" will tell you there's nothing special about equinox and eggs, that you can stand an egg at any time of the year.

I've been doing it for 40 years, and I'll tell you that there IS a difference at the equinox, for a few days before and after. It took me only about 10 seconds to get that egg standing. Any other time of the year you have to prop the egg up for a while to let the yolk center and settle, and it'll take a long time and super delicate touch, and even then not every egg will stand.

At the spring equinox, ANY egg will stand almost immediately, as long as there are no calcium bumps on the bottom. In good years I've even stood them on the pointy ends. They'll also stand at the fall equinox, but it's a bit more difficult, the window is smaller, and they don't stay up as long. I've tried standing them midyear. Doesn't work. Sorry "experts". True.

So there. You are challenged.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

2903 Pulling taxes

Thursday, March 18, 2010

My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch.
-- Jack Nicholson --


My mother called my brother a son-of-a-bitch once, and he said to her, "So what does that make you?" She got it, but I don't know that it stopped her.


I wanted to visit car dealerships across the river today, but Piper called and urged me to put together the stuff for taxes, so I spent the afternoon doing that. The only thing I don't have is the receipt for real estate taxes paid in February. All financial and tax-related stuff goes into one box next to my little living room desk, so I don't know how I could have misplaced it. I dug up the past year's check carbons, and wouldn't you know - the one packet missing is the February one. All dead check carbon packs go into the third desk drawer - how could it not be there? I went online to my checking account history, but couldn't identify which February check would have been the tax one. I'm stuck. I wonder what was going on in my head last February.

So I estimated it, and wrote a note to The Angel. Let's hope he reads it.


There's a phone application now that supposedly makes it easy to put together a group for lunch. It reminded me of an incident in the early '90s. Edith was transferring to Rochester, so we planned a huge good-bye luncheon for her at a tavern near the office, with cards and gifts, and the management chain also invited so we could pretty much take the afternoon off. The list came to something like 60 people.

It was supposed to be a surprise. There was a core group of five of us who had lunch together every day, so what we'd do is just decide to go out for lunch, and there everyone would be. Surprise!

On the appointed day, people were quietly sneaking out of the building. We went to the restaurant, and it was all set up, with a head table and flowers and banners and everything. We sat, and we waited. And waited.

And eventually it occurred to us that no one had invited Edith.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

2902 Car shopping on route 9

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

My girlfriend always laughs during sex---no matter what she's reading.
-- Steve Jobs --


I got off my tail today and hit the car dealerships down Route 9. I tried on a bunch of cars.

I really want one of those itty bitty 2-seat sporty things, but I have to admit it won't suit my uses. The new car will be my daily car, not just a Saturday night going-out special, and the itty bitty sporty things with the tiny trunks just won't work for taking loads of dross to the recycle center. I need at least a pretend back seat. That's what was attractive about the Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder - the back seat, too tiny for people, but good for carrying things.

Unfortunately, The Man was right. The sides are so high on the new Mitsubishi models that I can barely see over them. It feels like I'm sitting in an old-fashioned claw-foot bathtub, which is great when you want bubbles up to your chin, but not when you're trying to navigate.

Oh, and its turn radius is 36 feet! Good grief! That's four lanes!

So many of the dealerships have such a sad feeling. I don't think they've been doing well.

I fell in love with the BMW 128i/135i/328i/335i convertible. It's bigger than I wanted, with a full back seat, but it still looks low and sexy. Comes with either a hard convertible top (the 3xx series) or "rag top" (the 1xx series). The soft top looks niftier, but I guess the hard top might be more practical in the snowy north. I'll have to research whether it has glitches. (Glitches? Come on! It's a BMW!)

Tomorrow I'll check out the dealerships across the river.

2901 My beef with Rings

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Women might be able to fake orgasms. But men can fake whole relationships.
-- Sharon Stone --


I've never been able to get into Tolkien. Most of the guys I have dated fall into one of three camps: Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe, Monty Python, or Lord of the Rings.

I found Hitchhiker amusing, but not as philosophically rich as some people seem to find it. Monty Python's humor is juvenile. But Rings is (as far as I'm concerned) flat-out self-importantly annoying "fake intellectual" drivel. I have tried many times to read it, but I just can't get very far past the first book. I wasn't even remotely interested in the movie(s).

I may have discovered one additional reason I rejected Rings. I recently read a theory that Tolkien's writing displays an unconscious bias against and suspicion of earthy women, and against sex and heterosexual expression in general. I wasn't aware of it when reading, but now that I think about it, yeah.

And now I have to wonder about the guys who love it - like Ex#2. Perhaps it resonates with some of their own unacknowledged fears and biases. When I think about the guys who were in the Rings camp, yeah, it fits.

I'm too much of a feminist to ignore that slap from Tolkien.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

2900 Maybe I haven't found my car

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

"A good deal of tyranny goes by the name of protection."
-- Crystal Eastman, (June 25, 1881 – July 8, 1928), lawyer, antimilitarist, feminist, socialist, and journalist. She is best remembered as a leader in the fight for women's suffrage in the United States, as a co-editor of the radical arts and politics magazine "The Liberator", and as a co-founder of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. --


The Man says I may not be happy with the car I settled on. He says they've changed the design, and it doesn't handle as well as the older models. Plus, the rear goes up and then down, and I might have trouble seeing over it.

I'll test drive. We'll see. The reviews do say it has a large turning radius - I already know I won't like that. Sob. Back to the drawing board?

Monday, March 15, 2010

2809 WTF?!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Human beings are never more frightening than when they are
convinced beyond doubt that they are right.
-- Laurens van der Post --


I found this in my local newspaper this morning, among the ads in the world news section:

Huh? Is it supposed to be a political cartoon? I don't get it. Aren't Cruella deVille's and Scooby Doo's likenesses copyrighted? What the heck IS this? It can't really be aimed toward kids, but it can't really be aimed toward adults, either. Can it? Although in a red state, I guess those could be synonymous.... It's making fun of Democrats, but it's also making fun of the RNC and RNC fundraisers. Or is that the point?

I don't understand.


Later: OK. I found it listed as a cartoon, here: That's a relief, but the copyright issue still exists.

2808 Icicles

Monday, March 15, 2010

If your customs allow you to kill on the basis of religious, racial, material, political, or ideological differences, then you are living in a barbarian society, and you are a barbarian. ...[T]hose who engage in violence even to spread seemingly well intentioned political ideologies are barbarians.
-- Michael Hachulski --


We've figured out why icicles are rare. Attic insulation and ventilation. If you see icicles on the eaves of a building, that building is poorly insulated. Buildings are a lot better insulated now than they were when I was a child.

And that's the troof.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

2807 Car

Sunday, March 14, 2010

We cannot get rid of terrorism by getting rid of terrorists. We must get rid of the conditions that create terrorists.
-- Me --


I have selected my car - 2010 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GT, convertible, manual transmission. You can see it at - click on the GT.

It doesn't come in maroon, which is what I really want. Either I take it in red, or get a custom paint job. The nearest Mitsubishi dealership is in Poughkeepsie. I still really want the Boxter, but there isn't a Porsche dealer within 50 miles. There used to be one in Poughkeepsie, but it closed when IBM laid off 13,000 people in the mid-90s.

I've been looking at various itty bitty 2-seaters, but the way I intend to use the car, the tiny pretend back seat in the Eclipse would be more useful. It will be my everyday car, not just for occasional flash.

Piper wants to go with me to make the deal. He thinks he could get me a better price than I could on my own. Maybe.


I went to a mystery theater dinner this evening. The "plot" was a cruise ship, and we were all passengers. There was a passenger talent show with costumes. Before the play, the "cruise activity director" went around and recruited people to play various parts. She asked me to play the Captain's wife. I turned her down because it involved dancing with the Captain, and my back was too fragile to tempt it. What she didn't mention was that the Captain's wife played Dolly Parton in the talent show. Dolly and I, by the way, wear the same bra size, but it's more spectacular on Dolly because she has a smaller tighter frame, longer legs, and a custom tailor.

They must have wanted me, because I subsequently got recruited for two other parts. Nope, back hurts.

The evening was $45. The salad was excellent, but the buffet consisted of three pasta dishes. Period. You could have pasta with cheese and red sauce, with beef and brown sauce, and/or with chicken and white sauce. Um, I'm not supposed to be eating pasta at all, except for occasional small amounts of whole grain pasta. The lack of creativity was annoying.

It was also annoying that when the guy dropped dead (poisoned), and we were supposed to take a guess as to who did it, there had been NO CLUES WHATSOEVER! The explanation at the end was not supported by anything said earlier. They gave out prizes to the folks who guessed right, and I'm willing to believe they just picked the character who got no more votes than they had gift bags.

Well, it was my first "mystery theater dinner". At least now I know what it's sorta like.