Friday, August 19, 2011

3339 Stuff

Friday, August 19, 2011

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 want to see the movie "The Help" when it appears locally. When a movie is based on a book, I like to read the book first. Movies tell you what happened; books tell you why it happened. Anyway, I was a bit startled when I saw the color ads for the movie on TV. Startled because when I read the book, I "saw" the movie in my mind in black and white.

I don't know why I did that, but it is somehow appropriate.


I heard this on the radio, and it's SO true! "Government exists for the benefit of those in the government."


A friend recently said that her doctor says she's bipolar. Ya know, I suspect that's so, and I also suspect the friend already knew that. It fits. When she's up, time with her is a gigglefest. When she's up, she does get a bit impulsive, but she controls it well. When she's down, she beats herself up a bit, but it doesn't seem to last long, and she's still pleasant to others. External happenings don't seem to "bring on" either state. It's random. I think the diagnosis fits, and it's nice to have a name for it, and a starting place for leveling things out, or at least understanding what's happening. I say congratulations, and where do we go from here.

It reminded me of a close acquaintance of a few years back who made the same announcement, that her doctor finally came up with a diagnosis, that she's bipolar. I didn't have the same reaction then at all. Nope. There was no indication of any depression with her. She'd go along just fine for a little while, and then something would happen that annoyed her, usually problems with the job or boyfriend, and she'd go into a multi-month rage. She'd attack anyone who said anything to her that she interpreted as disrespectful, and when she was in that state, she saw EVERYTHING as disrespectful. She'd have major paranoia. Most people around her eventually learned to fear her, because her rage seemed to have no limits, no controls.

I'm not a psychiatrist, but even I know that's not a bipolar thing. But the doctors know only what she chooses to tell them, and she keeps her appointments only when she's not raging. And since her rages are, in her mind, completely justified, I suspect the doctors don't know.

So she was all happy because now with a label maybe they'd get her meds right. But she was a heavy (really heavy) marijuana user, and she never told any of her doctors about it. I'm sure that has to be taken into consideration when you're talking about dosages and stuff.

I wasn't happy about her announcement. I didn't see it as forward movement. Just another misdirection.


My furniture and "good" jewelry is almost entirely auction finds. Here's a photo catalog for an upcoming auction at the auction house where I got most of my stuff: That's not all of it. George usually just lists a small taste. Note the Thunderbird at the end. I suspect it will go for less than 8K.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

3338 We know where our priorities are

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

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


Read this article from the Miami Herald:

True cost of Afghan, Iraq wars is anyone’s guess


The averaged-out cost per service member in Bush's wars in Afghanistan and Iraq is now approaching $700,000 per year, while school districts are cutting budgets and firing teachers. One month's war budget could launch six space shuttles.

And in the meantime, Gramma eats Ken-L Ration and Grampa can't afford his blood pressure pills, Mom and Pop can't make the house payments, and Junior can't find a job, and Congress has voted to make that a lot worse.

But don't worry - the jet setters, corporations, and CEOs are doing fine, and they'll take care of us.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

3337 Ironing

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

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 --


If something comes out of the dryer needing ironing, it's a very long time before that item gets worn again. I hate ironing! Some people find it satisfying or relaxing. Not me.

Goes back to my youth, I guess. In the fifties, almost everything got ironed. I can't think of anything right off that didn't. Well, socks. And stockings. My father wore knit undershirts and boxer shorts, and they got ironed. Bras got ironed. Bedsheets got ironed. Dishtowels got ironed. Hankies. If the bath towels were badly scrunched, they got ironed.

There was no such thing as permanent press. No blends. Almost everything was cotton. Clothes came out of a dryer wadded into balls, or off the clothesline stiff as a board with vertical creases and folds where the clothespins had been. Heavier cotton items could stand by themselves. Sheets were often starched so they would stay cleaner longer, and they were often so hard they could cut your skin. They'd go into the ironing basket, and the morning of ironing day you'd sprinkle them.

Wow, that's an old term - "sprinkle the clothes".

We didn't have steam irons (well, maybe rich folks did, but we didn't), so you'd dampen the clothes for ironing with a coke bottle with a sprinkler head cork in the top. Then you'd roll each item tightly and stack the rolls so the moisture could permeate. If it was going to be more than a few hours, you'd put them in the refrigerator so they wouldn't get a mildew odor.

Being the eldest of five kids, ironing the flat items fell to me as soon as I could reach the top of the ironing board. I got pretty good. I can iron a man's shirt on a flat board so that there is no crease down the sleeve. There's a correct order for ironing a shirt: collar and cuffs, back yoke, front yoke, sleeves, body, retouch collar and cuffs. You do the collar and cuffs first and last because they are dampest. And have to be sharpest. Or something. Never quite understood the logic.

Anyway, it was a never-ending task. I hated it.

Just before I left for college, there was an incident that made me swear I would never iron anything that wasn't my own personal property ever again.

My father was rushing to go to an important meeting. He took off his uniform pants (Air Force), handed them to me, and said to sharpen the creases.

I do that well. You lay them out, carefully lining up the seams top and bottom and inside the legs, fold the upper leg over the top, dampen the crease with a moist sponge to remove the old crease, iron up the inside of the bottom leg, front and back, turn the pants over, and do the same to the outside, then repeat for the other leg.

The crease doesn't go all the way up on uniform pants. It stops a few inches below the waistband. He had handed me the pants with the belt still on, and I had left the belt on, since I wouldn't be working on that part. When he walked out to the kitchen and saw me lift the pants off the board with the belt still on them, he was furious and knocked me across the room.

Hey! I thought he was in a hurry! There was no reason to take the belt off!

I realized later, of course, that there was no winning. If I had taken it off, I'd have been hit because it would have cost him time to put it back on. He just wanted to hit someone because he was nervous about the meeting.

So, it is now three husbands later, and I have managed to iron very little. You don't like wrinkled sheets? Fine. Iron them yourself. Permanent press arrived, and I got to be an expert at removing things from the dryer and hanging them before they got wrinkled.

99% of my closet doesn't need ironing, ever. Some things I have to pull out of the dryer before they're completely dry, smooth them with my hands and let them hang, and some things I know to keep to a very small load.

But something has gone kerflooey.

A lot of things that have always behaved are now coming out of my new dryer a rumpled mess.

The new house has a gas dryer. I've never had a gas dryer before. It has five levels of heat, and I'm using the middle one, and sometimes the seams are still damp when I pull the clothes out, but the body of the blouse is wrinkled anyway. Never had that problem with my electric dryers.

I don't understand. And after two hours of ironing blouses, slacks, and caftans this morning, I'm very unhappy about it.

(My iron is more than 30 years old, the spray and steam spit spitefully. I had to sprinkle the clothes! I'll have to buy a new iron. Many bad words being muttered.)

3336 Buying votes already.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

“When love and skill are combined, expect a masterpiece.”
-- Demetri Martin’s fortune cookie --


The next election is more than a year away and I'm already getting steamed.

Read this - - for a good laugh. What's sad is that a lot of people, most, really, will think "Oh, she won. She must be good." without knowing how she won. It's amusing that many of the people she bought didn't vote for her.

(Incidentally, this article says she bought about $180,000 worth of tickets, 6,000. Other sources say $150,000, or 5,000 tickets. Perhaps the higher numbers include the singer.)

3335 Trickle

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Preserve wildlife - pickle a squirrel.


Have they figured out yet that the Trickle Down theory isn't working? There's stuff trickling down all right, but it looks and smells suspiciously like urine.


The Republiclowns are making sure you know that Obama's Gallup approval rating is down to an all-time low of 39%. What they're not telling you is that according to a recent CBS News/New York Times poll, Congress has a disapproval rating of 82%, and a new Rasmussen survey has found that 85 percent of Americans believe that members of Congress “are more interested in helping their own careers than in helping other people.”

Wow. Let's give corporations and fat cats another tax break. Maybe that'll fix it.

Monday, August 15, 2011

3334 Yogurt and Rice Pudding

Monday, August 15, 2011

"The greater the lie, the more enthusiastically it is believed and greedily swallowed.”
-- William Hazlitt --


I made yogurt using the recipe from a previous post. It's a bit thin, but good, and it was easy. The instructions said the first batch should "mull" for seven hours, and then you should adjust the time up or down for subsequent batches, so I guess if I want it thicker, I should go for eight hours next time. You have to experiment to find the balance you like between thickness and tartness.

Yesterday I made rice pudding. I used almond milk instead of mammal milk so Daughter could eat it, and I used Splenda instead of sugar (at 1/3 the sugar rate) so I could eat it. It's a bit bland, but good.

I'm surprised at how good the almond milk tastes. It's sweetish. Probably good on cereal.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

3333 How?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Rudeness is the weak person’s imitation of strength.
-- Eric Hoffer --


Visit Look at the photos. Read the captions. Then write a check to Doctors Without Borders.

3332 Exercise

Sunday, August 14, 2011

News for a long time hasn't been about information dissemination,
it's all been about telling us how to think and act.