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Sunday, January 15th, 2017
2:26 pm - Friday the Thirteenth
Somehow, I lost track of the entire day.  I thought Saturday was Friday.  I took my Friday meds on Saturday.  I recorded my Saturday weight on my sheet as Friday.  When I went to watch a mail order disc on my computer, I glanced at the date line and goggled.

I corrected the date on the weight sheet.  I took Saturday's meds today.  Should I move today's meds back to the Friday slot, so I remember what really happened?  Probably.

As far as I know, I've never had a fear of triskaidekaphobia, but maybe something more is going on in my subconscious than I realize.   

current mood: accepting

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Saturday, December 24th, 2016
1:01 pm - The Owl and the Butterfly
Nola, age three and a half, got her owl with feathers that count from 1-9 in bright, primary colors, while her brother got the butterfly whose wings spell out the alphabet.  Now, everyone knows kids have short attention spans, but their father reports that when he tried to help Nola, she'd bat his hands away, "No, daddy, it's MINE!"

Other interests took over briefly, but all day, the owl and the butterfly were the clear winners.  

current mood: happy

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Saturday, December 17th, 2016
11:19 pm - First Significant Snow of the Season — Possum Playing Possum All Day
Better than half way through December, only four days shy of the winter solstice, we are having snow.  It started off shortly after 10 pm last night (right after the POSSUM snapped herself into the trap–the only reason I went out onto the porch at that time of night)  with sleet that blew under the front porch roof and coated the entire porch and all three steps with ice, then a bitter, hard, spitting snow.  I swept the steps of everything not already iced down.

Three times today, I've swept varying amounts off the porch, always at least an inch.  About three pm I got the car out and cautiously drove down the hill, as I'd been ordering paperback books, and if they were sent in anything not plastic, the mailbox would be likely to leak snow all over them, which could cause damage.  I'd gotten several individual books that were wrapped in cut up barrel grocery brown bags recently, which I'm sure is cheaper than buying plastic mailers, if you choose to ignore the time it takes to wrap it.   I got so chilled last time, I may decide to just wait - the computer says we're heading for -2° (and the indoor/outdoor thermometer says 1° now, so that might be an overly optomistic prediction.)

MS had told me last night he'd come take Mz O'possum out of the trap today, but he spent the whole day trying to get his second vehicle to run.  He now has three, two of which he might not be able to get up and running.  He called after dark, saying he'd get her tomorrow.  I'm betting, if the forecast is right, she's there 'til Monday.

I had an email from my Rochester sister – a fellow my age who used to date sister #2 dropped over dead of a heart attack while shoveling snow.  That third porch sweeping, I left the bottom two steps undone.  The wind was up and by the time I'd gotten some food out for the cats, I knew I needed to go back inside.  I'm sure the snow will still be there tomorrow. :-(

current mood: tired

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Tuesday, December 13th, 2016
1:10 pm - Saw Possum, Caught Coon
So, three times running, I saw an extremely pg possum on my front porch.

In broad daylight, there she was in all her broad splendor, eating scraps out of the turkey roaster base I'd left on the front porch.   I'd just come back from a shopping trip, and had pulled up to unload the car.  Instead, I picked up my cane that lives by the shift counsel in the center between the bucket seats and started up the steps.  The possum climbed up on TOP of the trap, whose door had been tripped.  I took a swing at it and she ran, scooting across the porch, down the steps, over to gravel and into the space underneath the basement steps.  I unloaded everything onto the front porch, except the cooler full of frozen food, which needed to go in the basement freezer, except for the fresh meat.  Grabbing the plastic bag of meat out, I automatically shut the lid, as that was all that went into the house.  I totally spaced off the trip down the steep basement stairs.

My last trip out was for purse and plastic bag "book bag" substitute, which I picked up after parking the car in the garage.  I bated the trap with expired fruit, not very attractive, but I'd successfully caught stuff with it before.  Two days later, I had my eye appointment.  The temperature was 36°, and the three half gallons of "exotic" ice cream types (Caramel Praline Crunch, Toasted Almond Fudge, and Butter Pecan,) were totally thawed.  My neighbor told me to refreeze the frozen stuff, as his was always melted by the time they got it home.  I did the with  the dinners, but...

Just THINK how much weight I "lost" by having the ice creams all revert to liquid!

I'd seen the possum three nights running when I got the idea to bate the trap with the unlicked Butter pecan carton.  Last night, around 9 pm, I heard the jaws of the trap click.  (Actually, since it's a live trap, I really heard the lid drop into place.  I'd been hearing it regularly.  Once for a mother cat who KNEW BETTER, once on a 3/4 grown wild black cat with fetching white goatee and nose, and once with TWO yellow sibs the same size, age.  [Ice cream ALWAYS tastes better when shared with a friend, don't you know…])

Not only did the coon lick the plastic carton, he/she also trashed it for me.

current mood: DO NOT REFREEZE

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Monday, December 12th, 2016
4:16 pm - Blessed
Blessed are those who can give without remembering and take without forgetting.

current mood: amused

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3:55 pm - Irony
The irony of life is that, by the time you're old enough to know your way around, you're not going anywhere.

current mood: amused

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3:53 pm - Why?
God made man before woman so as to give him time to think of an answer for her first question.

current mood: amused

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3:43 pm - On Aging
I was always taught to respect my elders, but it keeps getting harder to find one.

current mood: amused

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3:42 pm - On Setting Goals
Aspire to inspire before you expire.

current mood: inspired

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3:38 pm - Era Defined
Every morning is the dawn of a new error.

current mood: amused

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Sunday, December 11th, 2016
5:08 pm - Third Time's a Charm

So, two days prior to my eye appointment, I FIND THE MISSING LENS!  With my bare big toe.  I immrediately put it in the glasses case with the best pair of glasses I have ever owned.  I was changing the sheets on the bed, (for the third time since I'd lost the eye glass lens).  As I bent forward to tuck in the far side of the sheet, my toe hit the edge of the glass.  It was UNDER the bed.  I'd heard a tinkle when it happened.  Evidently, it hit the frame and bounced a bit, but, of course, made no noise hitting the carpet.

Since the glasses frame had given way, I sadly thought they'd have to be replaced.

Good News!

The doctor who has been doing my eye exams used to teach in the vision college in DM.  He came back to work for his first day on Sunday.  I got a call, offering me my choice of the slots from 11:00 to 3:40, the extent of his first day's work.  I took the last one, thinking I'd shop a bit first, or give them time to get the roads cleared off, since it is now mid December, not early November.

Hind sight is 20-20; Foresight is 50-50.  Had I taken the earlier one, I'd have gone on clear roads, not hit stuff I had to drive through.  I arrived early, as they said, "We'll take you as soon as you can get here, and try to get you back on the road quickly.

He had pneumonia (yes, he'd taken both shots for the types that have them, but got yet a third type and ended up having to go to rehab to finish recouperating).  He's three years older than I am.  The Bosnian tech that prepped me for his visit was quite a philosplher.  I asked her if she thought a hug would be appropriate.


"That's personal.  Best ask the doctor."

He walked in almost  immeidately, so I did.  It WAS, and I got a pat on the shoulder as part of it as well.  After a thorough exam, he was exceedingly pleased with the eye the surgeon at the Mayo Clinic had repaired.  I now have 20/25 vision in that eye!  (I told him I've been giving it a lot of practice.)

Then, even better, the vision people who actually fill the prescriptions could repair my favorite pair!  A screw was missing... After diligent searching in a multi-screw drawer,  the tech found one the perfect size to hold, and fixed them, so I paid for the repair and new lens and shipping on the ones I'd been wearing, and left for home immediately, exceedingly happy.  (We did the update on the pair I had swtiched to, which were several changes out of date.  Normally, you wait and come back in an hour, but since I'm a 160 mile round trip away, with the weather porentially worsening, I did not want to risk having to creep home on ice, so everyone was good to make it happen for me.  The fact that they were not very busy also helped.)

I got home on dry roads shortly after dark, having left the eye doctor BEFORE my appointment time had even been reached.



current mood: satisfied

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Saturday, December 10th, 2016
10:44 am - Socttishism in Book
He stood in the close mouth... Deep and Crisp and Even by Peter Turnbull.

Title refrence: Good King Wenceslas :  Good King Wenceslas looked out/On the feast of Stephen/When the snow lay round about./Deep and crisp and even

A “close” in Scotland is a narrow passageway. In early times it ran between houses in a town—such closes are still to be found in ancient districts, such as the area flanking the Royal Mile in Edinburgh. In the past century the close has also come to mean the entryway that gives access to the stairs leading to the tenement apartments above.  Some closes and the stairwells leading from them are lined in their lower half by colorful ceramic tiles.  In fererence to the fact that in years past many of the tiles came from the Walloon region of Belgium, these are known as "wally" closes.  To live in a wally close was to quote Edward Boyd, "an unspoken statement of your credit rating, of your accent, the schools your children attended, the kind of clubs you joined or that would be prepared to have you as a member."  Tile meant upper middle class.  [from Many Changeful Years by Graham Lister, p. 89] ... The listener knew to wait at the close mouth.

current mood: accomplished

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Thursday, December 8th, 2016
7:23 pm - Cleaning Out the Closet
I didn't even get down one layer... I hit a pile of enticing, but unread, books.

Oh, boy!  They were SOOOO old that they were still correctly spelled, punctuated, and ERUDITE.  GENERAL FICTION.

First, I grabbed The Far Arena.  (1978; Richard Ben Sapir)  A Roman gladiator was unfrozen from the Arctic AND LIVED.  They aren't sure he is not spinning them a tall one, and in the course of proving it, the huge cultural gap swallowed them.  The science explaining what happened was pretty laughable, but if you grant the major premise, it was a roaring good read.  I marked vocabulary words in it.  I checked historic events in it.  What a joy!

Then, I glommed onto Erich Segal's The Class (1985); about five 1958 graduates of Harvard, filled with well-used poetry and many beautiful turn of phrases.  I remembered him as sort of sappy, (Love Story, Oliver's Story) But this one dealt with the classics, much quoting in Latin and Greek (fortunately, translated…)  Generally, poetry quoted in stories just does not hit my sweet spot.  (Well, Sheakspeare's got some I can quote, and other classic ANCIENTS in English).

I even like one silly poem attributed to Rudyard Kippling that I hit in a SCOTTISH detective story, Deep and Crisp and Even by Peter Turnbull, (1982), the first one in an ongoing detective story I heard favorably reviewed somewhere and ordered back in January.  I've been keeping track of odd Scottish words, schemes (back streets), patch, which I think is slang for a policeman's beat.  The cultural depiction is every bit as interesting as the actual crime solving to me.  (Yes, we DO have a Maclean line back there, and some relatives that were Campbells.  Some of the Macleans used to visit Biloxi/Ocean Springs when all that generation were younger folks.  Since they were from Canada, that is probably as responsible for the closeness as anything.  They were a hoot.)

current mood: giddy

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Wednesday, November 30th, 2016
12:02 pm - Better Late Than Never Department
When my sister that is 13 months younger was 6-7 years old, she tried to feed our newborn brother a chunk of a chocolate chip cookie.  This resurfaced on a recent visit with sister #3 (2 3/4 years younger than I am) and mom.  I have actually a tiny memory of it, in the appartment on West Thomas Street, Chicago, right before we moved to Park Forest, the first suburb to use "ticky tacky" houses of songwriter Pete Seeger fame.  (Ticky tacky or not, I remeber with great pleasure the trips out to the building site as the housing development took shape.  Piles of broken wall board that made "free" chalk for use on the streets.  Eventually our own grass, yes, mowed with pride and joy!  Trees, one in each yard (originally, my hand could encircle its girth, but the leaves were green, not sooty!  Streets so quiet we could play giant games of "snail" (a wicked version of hop scotch were boxes were drawn from one side of the asphalt street to the other in a spiral shape like a snail, center "home square" for the circle dead center in the street) right on the street in front of our houses.  Only true athletes with stamina made it to the center if many were playing.  

current mood: pleased

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Sunday, November 20th, 2016
7:44 pm - Date/Time Impaired
Well, I did it again.  Missed the time transition to fall back... But, since I'm retired, it was the 15th before someone noticed I was off.  I happened to ask my sister when it happened, as I didn't want to be off for my eye doctor appointment Dec. 3rd.  I remembered that being an issue in past years, but then, last year, I had a Nov. 5th appointment, a bit closer to the change.

I've noted that I DO get a headache if I type on the computer very long.  I've been choosing larger print books, and watching more Netflix, when my normal November pattern is to write, write, write on my NANO novel.

Oh, well.  Maybe next year.  At least, I gave her a good laugh.  

current mood: grim

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Thursday, November 17th, 2016
2:17 pm - Sometimes, I FEEL SO STUPID

Like the day I was working on a 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle.  I'd been to town, gone all over the driveway, yard, and house, and at some point, I heard a tinkle as if something had dropped.  I don't remember where I was at the time.  I looked around, wherever it was, and couldn't see a thing.  I went on with whatever was occupying my attention at the present.

Early in November last year, I had my annual eye check.  The closest I could get this year, keeping with Dr. Bloom, was Dec. 3rd.  I remember thinking that I really would need a new perscription, this time around.  Last time, the change was so miniscule, he suggested that I not do it, but keep the new perscription so that I could use the new formula if I needed to replace my glasses for any reason.  (He does that every year, but this was only the second time I didn't need a change, and it had been a few years, back to before the five eye surgeries in one year...)  I kept moving my head around to find the right place on my soft focus lenses as I looked at near, then far, then middle distance pieces of the puzzle.  I stuck my right hand up to adjust the glasses, and poked myself right in the eye!

There WAS no lens in that eye frame!  That tinkle, must have been it falling out. (Right, that tinkle had evidently been my lens for my glasses...Clear.  Small.  Not on the beaten path.) I looked all over, but could not find the missing lens.  I'm now in an old pair of glasses from two or three years back, but I can live with that better than clear glass, even though the right one is my "good" eye.  (And, yes, I could see well enough to put in pieces with just one lens.  If it had been the left eye, I'd have missed it immediately.  Or had I been reading...)



current mood: chagrin

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Monday, September 26th, 2016
12:04 am - On Novel Writing Time Line ∼ Ray Bradbury
You can write a short story in two hours.  Two hours a day, you have a novel in a year.

Ray Bradbury



current mood: snickering

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Sunday, September 25th, 2016
10:53 pm - On Creativity ∼ Ray Bradbury
Stuff your eyes with wonder, live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds.  See the world.  It's more fantastic that any dream made or paid for in factories.                                                                                  Ray Bradbury

current mood: pleased

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10:50 pm - On Inspiration ∼ Ray Bradbury
My stories run up and bite me on the leg - I respond by writing down everything that goes on during the bite.  When I finish, the idea lets go and runs off.                                                                                Ray Bradbury

current mood: satisfied

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10:11 pm - Banana Split
So, I'm driving home from Rochester, and when I hit Indianola, I got the urge for my traditional hot fudge sundae from the Dairy Queen.  I usually do that on my way up, meaning a right hand turn into the drive through.

Left handed takes more work, but I made it, and rewarded myself by going inside to strecth, relax and keep it from melting all over the car.  I was next in line when I realized I'd not grabbed my coin purse.  As I walked back inside, two vans full of relatives entered right before me.  After a prolonged wait, I found myself ordering a banana split, instead.  (Good looking photo?)

I asked if the toppings could be switched, as I dislike the strawberry.  So, I had hot fudge, caramel and hot fudge.  I was happily nicking a tiny piece of banana off one slice or the other so each bite had one when I suddenly hit a piece of peel.

Carefully extracting it, I laid it out full length on an extended napkin.

After I was done, I approached the counter, waiting until I could catch the eye of the girl who prepared my split.  Offering her the napkin, I suggested, "I realize research shows that most of the vitamines are contained in a fruit's peel, but I didn't think banana was one of those.  You might get more repeat business without including the peel."

That will teach me to indulge in a guilty pleasure!

current mood: amused

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