Sunday, May 29, 2005

The Saturday Six frin Patrick's Place

The Saturday Six from Patrick's Place.  If you'd like to play, copy the questions and post them your own answers in your journal. Post a link to the entry in the comments at Patrick's Place.


1. What is the most inexpensive, non-valuable thing you tend to collect and hoard? Why do you do it?

1. PAPER the printer wastes. The printer is always doing things like running ALL pages when I tell it to print page two only. I say I can turn this over and print on the back, but I rarely do. In fact, when I need scratch paper, I take a fresh sheet out of the printer feed tray.

2. PLASTIC TUBS the cottage cheese and margarine come in. Those nice little tubs make neat storage containers. “Nuts,” my daughter says, “If I need storage tubs I’ll buy Gladware at the market and I won’t waste water washing them out.”

3. PEANUT BUTTER JARS. Same reason. They are light, wide mouthed convenient pencil holders, coin repositories, urinals. Now isn’t that gross?

4. CARDBOARD CARTONS. I have moved many times and with each move I have had to scout the trash bins of every market and appliance store in town to find cartons to move things in. Now I loathe to throw any cartons away, even though I don’t expect to move again.

5. OLD MAGAZINES. What good are last week’s Time Magazine or mail order catalogues? So why do I hang onto them until I have to pay someone to haul them away? It is learned behavior. My family used to save National Geographic for years and years. They took up one whole wall of the garage.

6. SUITS AND COATS long after they are much too small for me. I used to wear large, long ago, and then extra large. Now, dear me, I am Four X large but cannot part with those suits and coats that are perfectly good for wearing again when I lose weight.

2. What is the highest price you've paid per gallon for gasoline where you live? Do you use regular, mid-grade or premium?

Rising gas prices do not affect me. I drive so little now that I buy gas only three times a year. I am not sure what I paid, but I think it was $2.58 a gallon. I have heard that it went to $3.25 a gallon for a while.

I used to work in a service station and pumped gas for $.26 per gallon and that included 4 cents state road tax. So, for 22 cents per gallon you got your fuel, your windows washed, your battery checked, your coolant refilled (with water in those days), and the correct air pressure in all four tires. No, you didn’t need to tip the attendant.

I use regular, for that’s what the owners’ manual says to do. You do read the manual, don’t you?

3. What is your favorite Bible verse and why? If you don't have a verse from the Bible that holds meaning to you, what's your favorite saying and why?

Isaiah 20,3 Isaiah went naked three years as a token and a sign against Egypt and Cush.

I like it because I’d like to think there is a reason I feel the need to go bare, and not that I’m just weird. What would happen to someone if they went around naked as a protest against Al Qaida. I think I’ll give it a try.

4. What was your favorite movie from the 1970s? When did you last view it? Do you have it in your movie collection?

Who remembers what movies came out in which decade? I like Big with Tom Hanks and True Grit with John Wayne, and I have them in my collection, and I liked ET, but I don’t have a copy, but now I have to go look up their dates.

5. Do you weigh more, less, or the same as you did one year ago? Six months ago? Three months ago?

A little more, and I hope it is only a little more.

Jennie: What one lyric sums up your current love life? Your view on life? Your past? Your hopes/dreams/fears?

Love is lovelier, the second time around. (love life)

A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down (view of life)

Thanks for the memories (past)

Roll out the barrel, we’ll have a barrel of fun (hopes)

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Follow up -- Painting The Parking Lot

They painted the parking lot of the old folks home --  except for one space where a lady parked her car, locked it, and went away for the week-end.  They painted AROUND her car.  This is that space, where her car was parked.

And there is another little unpainted spot... I wonder what was parked there.

Ooooh, look what someone parked in the new parking lot.  A brand new Toyota XR.Something.

Someone asked me "Isn't that one of those new hybrids, part electric?"  I didn't know, but as I watched the driver came and got in, and the huge thing glided off, as silently as the fog drifting away.  Spooky those electric drives.

Makes my old van look boxy and old fashioned.  Here is my '95 Chevy Van.

And just because I have up-graded my Photobucket membership, and have unlimited photos, here is the front of the old folks home where I live and write my journal.

Friday, May 27, 2005

MyVery Favorite

My very favorite entry and my very favorite comments. They still bring tears of pride to my eyes.

Love,  Chuck

The Bride Wore Purple -- follow up

From Milt, their wedding picture.

       Eva and Milt, Newlyweds

Welcome to the Home of the Obsessed

   Why would a normal adult go to bed at 1:30 am and then rise at 4:30 am to work on his journal?  The answer is: he wouldn't.  Therefor the proposition is wrong as stated. He is not normal.  He is obsessed.

   I am he who got three hours sleep last night and then came and wrote in this journal.  And I am in good company. 

   Sara stays up until three am writing of her days adventures even though she has to get up at seven to go to work.

   Karen goes to a movie at 11:45 pm on a work night.  Not just any work night, but the second work night on a new job.  I haven't checked to see if she came home and wrote a review of the movie before she turned in.

   Krissy is up late at night writing in her journal waiting for new husband to get home.

   So, welcome to our sleep-deprived world, you other J-landers.  You know how it is. You've been there. I, myself, can take a nap after lunch.  I hope you can too.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Weekend Assignment -- Ridiculous Pet Names

   My loyal, best friend, a Golden Retriever, came already named: GRIFFIN. I’m told that means red haired one in Welsh. That was appropriate and it stuck, though I called him Griff. His spayed lady companion, a Border Collie bitch, came named TACKY. I thought that was tacky, so renamed her Tammy. She did not mind.

   When our cat named MISSY had kittens we named them PUNKEN, for Pumpkin, and PUDGY, cause he was the fattest of the litter. Pudgy and Punkin committed incest and produced a litter one of whom we called BAT FACE, for obvious reasons

  My Mom and Dad named their pets as they saw them. GYPSY because she wandered, and SNOOPER because he sniffed everything. Snooper was a Scottie and Dad described Gypsy’s breed as Curbstone Setter. In other words, a non-descript mixture. BOUNCER was a lively dancing boxer.

  Their cats were THIS ONE and THAT ONE. I never knew which was which. Another was COMMON, a common domestic short hair Maybe it was for “come on”, I’m not sure.

   But the most ridiculous pet name I’ve heard was that of dog owned by a medical student. He gave his dog the generic name for Mercurichrome. Imagine calling your dog in at night by shouting through the neighborhood, “Come home little DIBROMOXIMERCUIFLOURICENE.”

   This was a Scalzi Weekend Assignment, but an earlier entry about pet names was Cats in J-land

Center of the Universe

One advantage to living in this old folks home, is that is right near everything.  Only if you lived in Manhattan would you be closer to Starbucks, Quizno's sandwiches, Long John Silver Fish and Chips, Carl's Jr., MacDonalds, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Domino's Pizza, Sav-Mart Market, Urgent Care Medical Center, Labratory, Pollo Loco, Hometown Buffet, a shopping mall, other restaurants. All within scooter distance.

I went for blood test this morning, skipping whatever form of eggs they were serving here.  then, as long as I was out, went to Carl's Jr, home of the six dollar burger.  (The Six Dollar Burger cost $3.95)  They had a breakfast burger that was a heart attack on a bun.  Hamburger patty, bacon, fried egg, and HASH BROWN POTATOES in a bun.  I ate it all.

I also had a cup of coffee the size of pint jar.

When I was patting myself on the back a few entries below, I thought I was pretty self-agrandizing, but I can't compare to the Channel Islands Roasting Company.  This was printed on the giant paper cup my coffee came in:

During much of the year here, the costal fog chills the morning air and gives the ocean a gunmetal gray appearance.  It's at times like these that a good cup of coffee really seems like "Nectar of the Gods."

So a collection of old friends and I set out to make that good cup of coffee. We started by bringing the best Arabica beans available from Columbia and other countries in the prime Central and South America coffee-growing regioins. What we craved was the clean, well rounded taste of a medium-roasted, classic "American Style" cup of Joe.

We think this coffee is it, and we hope you'll find it as enjoyable to drink as we do.

   Mike Murphy,

   "Head Honcho"

The coffee was all right.

Wow, this entry wandered...starting with the center of the universe and ending with a bit of the copy writers art.


Wednesday, May 25, 2005

C Minus Photo

This is a bad photo.  I know it is.  You cannot see the subject, only his cage.  He is in there, be assured.  I only sumbit this photo to "stay current" in the Photo Scavenger Hunt.  I think the Scavenger Hunt is a great feature and I have been remiss for many weeks.  So here is my homework.  Give me my mediocre grade and move on.

The assignment was a photo of your pet.  This bird, I think it is a Cockatiel, and I think it is a "he", lives in the lobby of our old folks home.  He sings when George plays piano on Tuesdays.  He sang along with the soloist at Eva and Milt's wedding.

He is very selective in his responses.  He mostly stares at me.  For some old folks, like Vera, he will approach the bars of his cage and set up a ruckus when they draw near. For Louis he carries on  "conversation" answering wolf whistle with wolf whistle for the length of the main hallway. 

Cockatiels and parrots are long lived, I'm told.  This one has been around for all my eight years here.  You'd think he'd know me by now. Perhaps he's socially retarded.

No one knows his name, but everybody calls him Pretty Boy. He is pretty and may or may not be a boy.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

The Saturday Six from Patrick’s Place.

1. What is the last product or service you tried just because you saw a commercial that impressed or amused you about the product? Did you like the product or service after you tried it?

Lime flavored Diet Pepsi…liked it. Even more recently Country Crock Mashed Potatoes. Saw the ad and decided to try them. At the market I ran into them by accident. Bought them on the spot. Are you disappointed? Don/t know. Haven’t tried them yet.
(P.S. Tried them and Liked them.  Added lots of pepper and salt and heated in microwave.)

2. How old is the oldest photograph in your home? Are you in it?

Great grandfathers portrait…don’t know exactly how old. Next oldest is family group of mother, grand mother and great grandmother taken about 1910. Old photo with me in it, stark naked, 1926, my age 2. I haven’t put that in my journal yet.

3. What is the most supernatural event you have experienced? Did you feel there was a specific reason that it happened to you?

I was alone, without a typewriter, and my hand wrote a story, long hand with pen on writing pad. I was captivated. I read the story as my hand wrote it, laughing at the jokes my hand was making, and wondering what was coming next. I was captivated. I don’t know why I was disassociating from my hand, but I was under much pressure at that time and had no other way to express my creative feelings.

I asked my tablemates this question and Wilma said, “What do you mean?”

I said, “Well, for instance, have you ever talked to God?”

“Oh, yes,” said Wilma, “But I don’t call that supernatural.”

4. Do you usually consider the glass half-empty or half-full?

I’m about half-and-half on the half-a-glass thing … Usually optimistic, but get serious and depressed from time to time. Sometimes when things go over and over in my head, it is at night, and I have to get up and write about them in my journal or private diary.

5. What part or parts of your body do you shave regularly?
Once a month is regularly isn’t it? My neck. I leave my face alone until I have to go a barber to get it done.

6. What day is typically your busiest of the week? What day are you usually the happiest? What day are you usually the saddest?

This is taking some thought. I haven’t related my moods to days of the week. I am up, and then I am down. Don’t know why, don’t know when. There are no activities planned for us old folks on week ends, so they are a drag. Week days are happier, except doctor appointments come during the week. I’d have to say that Mondays and Tuesdays are happiest. Things “get going” again after the dull week end. The regular staff is back early in the week, and doctors appointments are usually later in the week. But we’re never “busy”, ever. We wish we were.

If you have a Reader's Choice question you'd like to see asked (and answered), click the link on Patrick’s Place and send it to him e-mail.

Not Just Another Day -- III

It's not just another day at the old folks home --  it is FRONT PARKING LOT resurface day.

Yesterday was Wedding day (and) Back Parking Lot resurface day.  wedding guests could not use the back lot yesterday.  When the front lot was filled they had to park on the street, half a block away, and in Starbucks parking lot.  Parking in Starbucks was difficult because the Starbucks customers hogged most of the spaces so they could scarf down bitter coffee close to their cars. 

The finished project is beautiful.  See photo. 

Only, some resident forgot that his aged eyes needed dark glasses, and went for a half-sighted stroll with his walker on the black top while it was still wet, and then came in through the back door and left tracks on the new carpet.

Today they started on the front parking lot.  It looks good.

Surely there will be no mishaps today.

Except, one wedding guest parked her car in front yesterday, locked it, and went on a trip with family, taking her keys with her.  We have found that AAA will not tow a car if they do not have the keys.  So the front lot will be resurfaced AROUND her car.

What we needed today was the number of a good CAR THIEF.

The Bride Wore Purple

Purple?  Yes, Purple.  And so did the groom, a purple shirt. 

They were magnificent.  They walked down the aisle arm in arm together.  Eva is walking well in spite of having had a broken leg barely a month ago.  And they stood for their vows and most of the receiving line.  Finally Milton stepped away and brought a chair for Eva.  Well, I think he may have wanted one for himself, too, by then. Soon she was on her feet again, greeting folks.

There were perhaps two hundred guests. Their families, guests from Eva's church, and residents of the old folks home filled the parlor and over-flowed into the lobby.  The daily newspaper had come and interviewed them in the morning. The decorations were white festoons and wedding bells, and an a flowery arch to be wed under.

And pictures!  Lots of folks brought their digital cameras and the flashes sparkled brightly.  (I hope someone e-mails me one for this journal.) Eva and Milton are not too old for playful clowning at the cutting of the cake, which was delicious.

The caged bird in the lobby, pleased with all the company,  delightly sang along with soloist and with our regular pianist, George, who played for the reception.

It was everything it should have been. 

Later, following supper, as we were playing our regular game of rummy, Eva and Milton passed on their way to their rooms. Eva paused at the door of the card room to apologize for skipping the card game that evening.

We excused her.  

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Not Just Another Day -- II

   Eva and Milt, both in their eighties, get married in the parlor at two.  All the residents are invited to celebrate with the families of the bride and groom.

   They have adjacent rooms at the old folks home.  Tonight they unlock the connecting door.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Not just another Day

   It's not just another day at the old folks home. 

   Today, Chris turns 98.

   Happy Birthday, Chris, and many more.

   What shocks me is, Chris was born just about the same year as my father, and I'm eighty.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Ercoupe and Me

While I am still in a self-congratulatory phase (see entry below), let me show you a picture of me IN FULL FLIGHT. 

Yep, that's me at the controls of my own airplane, a 1946 Ercoupe 415-C.  It was thirty years old when that was taken.  I was 52.  Who knows, it may still be flying somewhere as an "antique". 

The close up is to prove it was really me, with dark hair, and my brave brother-in-law. Picture by my nephew taken from the ground as we took off of Brown Field, San Diego.

Ouch, just hurt my arm...

...from patting myself on the back.

   This my 217th entry.

   Checking on the "archives" box in the upper right corner of the main page gives the number of entries for each month of each year.  I called up the calculator from my desktop and added them up and was surprised to find I had made 216 entries.

   Then I looked back at the titles and was delighted with what I had ranted on about.  I chuckled at my jokes and light hearted pieces, and I shuddered at my self-revelations.  My, I dearly love myself, don't I?

   Here they are: archived and published on the internet for all to see.  I am an author.  This is my book: Dribble.

   May I autograph it for you?

With love from


Sunday, May 15, 2005

Was the Trunk Locked, Bart?

Many years ago, during prohibition, Great-great-grandfather Relph, had a still that fit entirely into a trunk. Grandfather kept the key close to him, and the still in an out-building in Beverly Glen where they lived. Great-great-grandmother Relph did not approve of the illegal still.

One night someone backed a truck up to the shed and stole the trunk, still and all. Grandfather was left with nothing but his key.

Grandfather suspected that, Bart, his son-in-law, and my step-father, had taken the trunk at the behest of Grandmother Relph. Of course, Bart denied it.

But for years, whenever he noticed that Bart was dozing, or distracted, and off his guard, he would ask casually, “Was the trunk locked, Bart.” He hoped that Bart would answer automatically “yes” or “no”, and reveal that he knew.

He never caught Bart with that ploy, however. I’m sure that is because Bart did not take the trunk.

At least, he never told me if the trunk was locked or not.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

The Saturday Six from Patrick Place

Patrick poses these conversation starters each week. I copied them down and then went off line to write my answers I don’t know why I decided to put real thought into it. Its just a game.

1. How many scars do you have on your body? Where are they? Puh-leez, what is the real reason for this invasion of my privacy? I have scars all over from WWII wounds…missing foot, gouges on other leg, powder burns on my face, and surgical scars, the most recent a week old, on my side.

2. What is the last junk food you ate in such large quantity that you actually felt guilty afterwards? Here at the old folks home I ordered extra mashed potatoes and gravy instead of whatever compressed ersatz meat product they were foisting off on us yesterday. I ate it all, and yes I felt guilty. I was uncomfortable all during our evening card game. I’m not used to that much good stuff.

3. What is the closest spot to your home where you go when you feel like you need an afternoon escape?
A bridge over a canal where swallows come each year and nest and raise their families. I await their coming in March and regret their departure in September. It is on a dirt road and about a mile from the through street.

4. Of those in your collection, what movie have you watched the most times?
Big with Tom Hanks or True Grit with John Wayne…. And when they come on TV, I watch them again.

5. Have you ever felt discriminated against? What about you do you believe led to the discrimination? Yes, but it was a matter of time and place.

6. RAPID FIRE QUESTION #3: Have you ever hired a:
a. Maid
yep, several times, often a couple, some good, some not so. About this time several cabinet nominees got scrubbed because their domestics were not on social security. I got busy and put mine on SS. The red tape was barely worth it.
b. Lawyer yep… pretty good
c. Chauffer… rather drive myself
d. Plumber… yep but mostly the roto rooter variety
e. Photographer.. Yes, and been one too, and been hired a time or two
f. Realtor… sure, bought and sold several houses. One was my son in law.
g. Gardener .. Yes, a character who was always gonna do something, next week. Was always buying my used garden equipment for a dime on a dollar
h. Personal Trainer.. Went to a gym once for a few weeks.
i. Psychic/Spirtual Advisor… my grandmother believed in spiritual advisors but I hope I have out-grown that superstition. My other grandmother had even more superstitions.
j. Mortician… I have buried a lot of family members.

Friday, May 13, 2005

The Terrible News, and the Bad News that goes with it

On the news yesterday, five GIs were killed fighting insurgents. What was not noticed was that there were probably five GI s nearby that were wounded. Say they lost a foot and an eye. We will compensate them $880 month for the rest of their lives. Plus cost of living increases.

So in May 2065 we can go to an old folks home and meet one of them in his wheel chair, and he can tell us about the hazards and the tensions of the second Iraq war, and we can compare them with the ongoing seventeenth Iraq war.

We will ask “How long before we can stop fighting and learn to live together?”

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Movie Review -- Adaptation

Adaptation with Nicolas Cage and Meryl Streep.  Wow, what a complicated story.  There are as many as four story threads to follow, with flash-backs in each, and flash-backs within flash-backs to complicate the matter.
Furthermore, certain scenes appear, and seem to advance the narrative, but suddenly, you discover,\ they were merely the dreams of the hero. 
All the story lines converge and the ending is slam-bang, shootem up action to wind up what has been mostly contemplative, introspective thoughts of the hypochonriac hero.
The protagonist is a screen writer who is struggling with an adaptation of best seller.  As it turns out, the script he is writing is the script for the movie we are watching.  How's that for confusing?
There are lots if little ironic touches like the scene in which the screen writer is shown thinking.  A voice-over explains what he is thinking about: that voice-overs to show what a character is thinking are bad writing.
Tonight I'm going to be watching Oceans Eleven.  I expect lots of straight forward action and NO contemplative ruminations.

PS  To Karen and others who made comments below::  I view this now as a colossal joke. The story is about a screen writer, and points out all the bad things in screen writing: (1) voice overs to show what the character is thinking (2)  Scenes that advance the narrative, and then turn out to be dreams (3) flash backs (4) flash backs within flash backs (5) multiple personalities of the protagonist (6) evil twin character (7) Deus ex Machina...the resolution of the plot by an "accident" or force outside the realm of the characters.  Yet the script of this movie employs all of these.

Most of the movie is about introspection and adaptation and making fun of car chases and thriller chiller scenes.  It makes fun of protagonist's brother who employs these devices.  Then the brother takes over the writing of the script and that is how it ends, as a slap-dash chiller movie with a Deus ex Machina (car crash) ending.  Oh, now I get it.  Charlie wrote the first part of the movie and brother Donald wrote the end. The hero had a multiple personality.

Only, that makes it MORE complicated, not less.

-- Chuck

Red Alert

Two private pilots got lost over Washington DC yesterday and caused a red alert.  This was not a drill. It was a genuine alert..I am looking forward to reading the article.  The news photo caption says they were not held.  I wonder if they were cited.  There are some things you DO NOT DO as a private pilot: (1) Run out of gas and (2) Get lost.

The most frequent question asked of me when I was a private pilot: What do you do when you run out of gas?

My answer:  Oh, you DON'T do that. 

Obviously, you check the gas before you take off. You can't pull over to the curb and call the AAA when you're in the air. It goes without saying.

It also goes without saying that you know where you're going before you take off and you keep track of where you are when you're flying.  You don't get lost. You just DON'T do that.  Especially over the Nation's Capitol.  They are lucky they weren't shot down.  They will be lucky if they don't get cited.

Now, having scolded them for their ignorance, I have to admit that I was lost once, for several minutes, within ten miles of my home airport.  Somehow I was disoriented and familiar landmarks looked different when they appeared where I did'nt expect them.  So I understand it happens.

Once after I landed at Santa Monica, CA,, the control tower told me to telephone Los Angeles International Airport controllers.  I was scared.  I got "reamed" for letting down too close to LAX. I was not cited for that bad judgement.  You are allowed few mistakes when flying -- sometimes NONE.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

A Fun Poll -- shudder

U.S. News and Time both have items mentioning a possible presidental race between Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush.

I took a poll for three days.  There were ten votes.

Final results



None of the above...1

Votes cast   10  (Thurs morning)   The polls are closed Thanks for taking part.


Rejected Pick up line

From Las Vegas on TV late night:

Jon Levitt to good-looking chorus girl:  Come here.  You wanna see something swell?

Girl: (Walking away) If that's a pick up line, it's terrible.

More About Teeth (or the lack thereof)

   Since I lost a bridge on the upper left yesterday, and am missing a molar on the lower left, and since I have lower right teeth missing, I have NO grinders meeting anywhere. 

   For breakfast I had Cream of Wheat, lightly poached eggs.  I had my apricots and my orange juice blended together and drank them both at once. Coffee tasted as good as ever.  Breakfast was good.

   But what about lunch? 

   I had a table mate, 83, who said we were all "Super-annuated".  I think that means "too many years".  He was a physician and liked Latinate words.  One day he announced, "I have a painful callousity on the distal end of my fifth meta carpus."  He wasn't making a joke; that's the way he talked.

   A few days later when he limped in and I asked, "How's the painful callousity on the distal end of your fifth metacapus?"

   "Hurts," he said.

Monday, May 9, 2005

What fun

Went to the dentist to have a loose tooth pulled.  Pulling was easy, then he had to do dental surgery to get the roots out.

What's fun I hear you ask.

The fun is doing nothing all afternoon, reading journals, including Adrianna Huffington's new journal, without feeling like I should be out and about, doing something "important".

Sunday, May 8, 2005

Best Time of the Day

Five AM to nine AM is the best part of the day.  I am awake, creative, full of mischief, piss and vinegar.  Some my friends sleep all morning long.  They even SKIP BREAKFAST. Ugh.

I can understand even that.  Five AM to nine AM is the best time to lall in bed, too. Let the world go by. Especially on Sunday mornings.

My next-door room neighbor used to turn her TV on to get her Sunday church programs at seven AM.  Her TV was next to the wall directly opposite the head of my bed, and she was hard of hearing, so the volume was set on maximum. 

I moved, but I still get up early.

Time to go now.  Eggs and sweet rolls for breakfast.

Saturday, May 7, 2005

More Quick Shots

1  The Old Folks Home roses are looking better, but still pretty depressed.  I thought flowers liked rain.  Our don't.

2   The prettiest cars in the parking lot today are a Chrysler and two Toyotas.

3   The Merced, CA, sesquicentennial (let the spell checker deal with that word) parade is going on as I type this.  It is on Main Street.  That is a mile away.  And here I sit, bemoaning the fact that I am too sedentary to go see it on my scooter.

4   I am getting lots of nice comments on my journal entries.  Thank you, I needed them.  I was feeling blue, but you kind folks bouy me up.  You are figurative life-savers.

5   I will actually get on my horse (Pride Scooter) and go to town to visit the Art Gallery open house.  My daughter will be there and some of her work will be displayed. 

6   One comment below says, "I'll bet those pictures bring back happy and sad memories."  Happy ones, yes, and yet, as I posted them I had tears in my eyes. One of our recent  week-end assignments asked what were the happiest days of your childhood.  My answer: summer vacation at Carpinteria, CA, beach camp.  We kid's parents took turns staying at the camp so that we could spend a large part of the summer there, living in swim trunks, sunning and swimming. 
   I may be paying the price of all that sunning now, as the dermatologist burns off nurmerous little tumors with his handy spray can of liquid nitrogen.

7  Another week-end assignment was to look into the future and predict what life will be like.  My tablemate and I did that at breakfast.  I predicted that in one hundred years the political  and science center of world will be Asia. Japan, Korea, China will unite and rule the world.  USA, Mexico, Canada will unite and be the second power, competing with South America for that spot.  Africa will dominate the third world and Eurasia will be part of that sphere.
   Science will be the religion of the masses, and the current religions will be hanging on, struggling to survive.  Marriage, burial, family unit customs will change drastically.  And the surprising thing is, that people born today, 2005, will be alive to see it all, but will be grumbling about how good things "used to be" back in the early part of the twenty-first century.

Friday, May 6, 2005

Me and Mom


                        Me and Mom --  1924

             Me and Mom 1926                     Me and Mom 1940


Thanks to Mavarin for the inspiration -- 2005

For Mothers Day

My mother, right, about 1910, with her mother, and her mother's mother.

Quick shots

1.  I am getting lazier and lazier.  First, I quit walking with a walker and started using a wheel chair.  Now, I have quit using wheel chair and am using electric scooter. I even got on scooter this morning to go to the parlor and mail box, a distance of about 200 feet.

2.  The roses in the garden did NOT like the recent rain.  They are all bent over, with heads in the mud, and looking thourghly soaked and miserable.

3.  The Cinco De Mayo here at the old folks home was delightful.  The dining room was festooned with colorful pennants, and there was a Mexican display in the corner with Serapes and Sombreros. (Let's see what the spell checker does with those.) The entree was enchiladas with beans and rice, one of my favorites, and there were Margaritas to start with.  A little pinata on each table held nuts and sugar free candy. 

4.  Chevrolet has still got it.  The most attractive car in the parking lot today was a new Chevrolet.  They make 'em look like Toyotas nowadays, but this one was even prettier.

5.  There are two rather unnoticed gems in your windows program.  If you haven't discovered PAINT on your computer you are in for a treat.  It is tucked away as an accessory.  You may have to seek it out using the START icon on the task bar.  But once you find it, you can draw, letter, modify photos, and generally waste whole mornings playing with it.  And on your Windows 98 is a handy gadget FAX.  Right on your computer you can send and receive FAX messages.  Handy, huh?  No machine needed to sit upon the telephone stand.  I rue that is missing from my Windows XP.  I don't need it often, but how I hate running to the office when I need to fax some document.  How come Microsoft dumped that neat feature?

6.  I had a hurtful prank played upon me by two friends.  I had made colorful placemats for our dining table, using the Paint program.  I made each placemat in the favorite colors of my tablemates.  They stayed in place for several days.  Day before yesterday I went early and added one for Jim, who has returned from a month long illness.  I had to readjust the place setting for each person slightly. 
   Since there was some time before dinner, I left the dining room, and as I left I passed Mrs. Asinine and Ms. Withered, my tablemates, entering.  That's not their real names, and I have changed them, not to protect their identities, but because I don't want to get sued. When I returned in about fifteen minutes, all the placemats were GONE. 
   I was astounded.  I asked what had happened to them, and no one knew.  I asked the waitresses and and even the cook.  No one could tell me what had happened.  I was flabbergasted and very upset.  Later I found them, twisted and tossed into a nearby trash can.
   Later I reasoned, only Mrs. A and Ms. W could have taken them.  For some reason they resented them, and removed them, and yet, couldn't tell me face to face.  In fact, they lied about removing them. It made me feel very defeated, and small.  I had made them for them,   What about all the other contributions I have made to the life aroud here?  The giant exercise ball, the card shuffler for card games, the funny signs on my door, my musical entertainment.  Is everything unappreciated?  It makes me feel very OLD, and very ALONE.
   I didn't confront Mrs. A nor Ms. W about this.  I may be wrong, and any further separation would merely add to the hurt. Thank goodness for my friends in J-land.

Tuesday, May 3, 2005

Whoa, Nellie

I am old enough to have known some people who have actually lived through a runaway horse adventure.  Not too long ago, in the way I figure time, people's main mode of transportation was THE HORSE.

The horse is a large square animal with a leg at each corner, and you got from place to place by sitting on his back... sitting right down on the horse.. and saying GITTYAP. 

You steered the horse with reins.  Some reins ran to a bit in the horse's mouth.  He didn't care much for the bit, who would?  You tugged on his mouth to make him whoa (stop). 

Sometimes, the family horse, Fred, or Bessie, or Dobbin or Nellie would become agitated, and TAKE THE BIT IN HIS TEETH (so you couldn't tug on his mouth) and take off for Cleveland at a dead run.  There you were: completely helpless, on a horse that wouldn't pay attention to your tugging or your yelling or your tears.  Where Nellie wanted to go, you went.  And fast.  You couldn't bail out, Nellie was going full speed.  You hung on.

What am I getting at?  Just this.

My Hewlett-Packard sometimes takes the bit in his (her) teeth and runs.  Tugging at the reins, that is... clicking on the red x in the corner of the window... doesn't stop him.  Sometimes turning off the computer at the console doesn't stop him.  I have had to UNPLUG THE COMPUTER FROM THE WALL. That is equivalent to knocking Nellie unconscious with a club.

So, what would you do with a horse that ran away with you?  When you finally somehow got control, you gingerly urged him home or shopping, or visiting, with kind words and nice slow, soft guidance.  So I do with my computer.

And if your horse ran away with you two or three times a day, you would take him to an expert for retraining.  There are such specialists for computers too.  But if that failed and he continued to run... you'd SELL him.  And if you couldn't sell him, or even give him away (there is little market for used computers) you would take him to the GLUE factory.  (That is a gentle metaphor that means you'd put him down... which means KILL him.)

A horse that runs away is useless.  So is a computer.

I hope my Hewlet-Packard has been listening to this.

Monday, May 2, 2005

Hail Umblicus

A comment was just added to my March entry about belly buttons.  Likely you wont have seen it, so I copy it here. 

I have just come across this website for Biannual Belly Button Day. I am the director of (bellybuttons .com) and we have so many photos of people showing thier belly button. We are based in New York and have had BelliButtonz for almost 3 years. People have often asked, what would a Beely Button Day or a Belly Button Parade be like. I think it would be huge gathering considering how many people we know would come consisting of people of all races. It's funny, it's not raunchy and it's unique. Why don't you have any photos of this Biannual Day and is it in New York? How would we make a Belly Buttons Day here or even a fair in someplace like Flushing Meadow Park in Queens or Even Central Park. It can consist of Belly Dance school performances, body painting, on the site body peircing or tatooing, hula dancers, body builders, best belly button contest, and more. I want more information concerning this Biannual Day and where it can go from here.
Comment from
drajahla - 5/2/05 6:13 PM

   It all sounds fine to me, except the piercing...that sends shivers up my spine.