Monthly Archives: June 2014

No

Just no.  Supreme Court, do you even remember what it was like when you were human?  Tired of the supreme arrogance of five angry men.

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Randomly June

1.  It’s sweat weather again, so I’m happily hibernating inside.

2.  Unless I have to go out, which I did when I went food shopping.

3.  It’s funny how you can predict the way people will navigate a car the way they navigate their shopping carts.  Maybe funny is the wrong word.

4.  Why do sponges require so much room on the supermarket shelf?  Can there really be that many varieties and magical qualities that deem such disparate price structures?  We’re talking about washing dishes, not engineering a space shuttle.

5.  I remembered to buy bird seed for the outdoor feeder.  This should make the birds happy, because they’ve been perching on top of the empty feeder and nonchalantly throwing an accusatory and hurt look through the windows at me.

6.  It should also make the chipmunks happy.

7.  Someone told me it’s good to have chipmunks because it means you won’t have mice since they’re mortal enemies and chipmunks always scare away mice.  What they didn’t tell me is chipmunks make more elaborate tunnel systems than the entire Stalag 17 enactment.  I think my foundation is beginning to sink.

8.  Last night I stood outside and watched the fireflies.  Except that I call them lightning bugs even though fireflies sounds more descriptive and romantic.

9.  I went outside because I had a lot on my mind (still do) and it was rather enchanting to watch all the blinking and twinkling among the trees and bushes, until I remembered that it’s nothing more than a bug booty call.

10. I wonder how lightning bugs do with chipmunks.

 

"Ssshhh....don't tell her the lightning bugs are breakfast."

“Ssshhh….don’t tell her the lightning bugs are breakfast.”

 

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My Brain Worked!

I’m knitting a sweater. Actually, it’s more like a shirt. I’ve made this pattern before and I love it, and I found some beautiful bamboo yarn which is perfect for summer and I am absolutely ZIPPING along on this project.

Except I found a rather large boo-boo.

I believe most knitters, when they find a rather large boo-boo, freeze and frantically think. Will anyone notice it? Of course they will, dopey, didn’t you just describe it as a rather large boo-boo? Rather large things tend to get noticed. Do I really need to fix it, or can I fudge it? By all means, fudge it. Nobody who looks at it will be able to tell anything. Except, of course, anybody who knits which if I recall constitutes a good number of your friends. What if I keep the mistake part to the back? Then people will talk about your mistake behind your back and are you willing to put up with that? What if I screw it up even more? Just be careful. You can do this. It only requires good lighting, your reading glasses, a crochet hook, and your tongue firmly planted between your teeth.

I’m pleased to say I actually fixed it, and I have proceeded past the point and you can’t tell where the fix happened. While I was doing it I was wondering if I should take pictures and write up some sort of tutorial for ravelry but then I thought that was the height of hubris thinking that somebody didn’t already know what it was I was doing and how stupid I would feel if I got that answer from the Geico commercial where a condescending voice says “everybody knows that” and I don’t have a snappy comeback like “farmers are terrible spellers.” So I did it and celebrated quietly.

I’m also knitting a blanket for my niece (which I’m fairly certain I’ve spoken about, but I am not inclined to scan past posts to be sure because I have ALL the lazy) but it is made of wool and it’s in the upper 80’s here this week (Lion King hair alert!) and that means my lap sweats and ain’t nobody got time for that. (Look how cool I am using a meme quote said nobody ever. Ha! Two for one!)

I just may knit this shirt again in all the colors, because I really love it. When it’s all done I will take a picture (which is sure to be blurry and not focused) and that will be that. In the meantime, I have a Barnes and Noble gift card burning a hole in my pocket, so I’m off to wander in the air-conditioned book store.

 

And someone who has opposable thumbs.

And someone who has opposable thumbs.

 

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My Father’s Day

It is no secret that I thought my father was a wonderful person.  He had integrity, which is sometimes hard when you’re walking that walk every day of your life.  It’s so easy to slip, so much easier to just go with the crowd or give in to something you don’t want to, just because you’re tired and wonder if taking that stand really makes a difference.  He did not compromise his principles for any reason.  Not that he was sanctimonious about it, because you would never know he felt this way or did these things unless you asked him; even then, he was succinct in his response, usually “because it’s the right thing to do.”

He was charitable, which is something I didn’t realize until later in his life when I noticed thank-you notes coming to the house from places like a battered woman’s shelter, a food pantry, a hospice center.  When asked about them, he would simply shrug and say “everybody can use some help sometime,” and change the subject.

He was morally outraged at any politician who lied.  He could not understand how someone claiming to be a civil servant and a voice for the people would publicly manipulate perception for selfish profit and gain.  He was particularly incensed during the Nixon administration, and did his best to educate me as to why corrupt politicians were the worst kinds of offenders to a trusting public looking for a government for the people.  He hammered it into my head that elected officials do not grant power; they are granted power by an elective republic, and the ones who knew the difference were few and far between.

He loved my mother whole-heartedly.  She knew, through his actions, that she could have anything she asked for and because of that she never asked for anything.  Every Sunday morning he would make an egg and bacon and bagel brunch for her (and those of us who whined that they wanted some, too) and she responded as if he’d gifted her with lobster and champagne.  Arguments happened as they do in all marriages, and there were some very quiet times when neither would speak to the other.  In retrospect, I think it was because everything had been said and there was no need to argue any further, but a mandatory cooling-off period was needed.  Soon, things would get back to normal and he would give her the comforting gentle pat on the backside and she would scratch his itchy back.

When my mother died far too young, I didn’t think my father would make it.  She was his whole world: they lived together, slept together, commuted together, worked in the same company together, and generally moved through life together.  I feared he would be joining her within the year, and felt guilty for living one state away.  I took to calling him every Monday night, and listened to many one-syllable answers to my hesitant questions.  How are you?  Fine.  Did you get through the day okay?  Yes.  Is there anything I can do?  No.  We had him out for Easter, and my 11-month old daughter gave him something to focus on.  He took a lot of pictures that day and I was starting to breathe a bit more normal again.  One Monday phone call a few weeks later he said I didn’t have to call him every Monday if I didn’t want to; he appreciated it, but I must not feel obligated as he was doing better.  I answered that these phone calls were for my benefit, not his, and I would still be calling thank you very much.  In that exchange, I was never more my father’s daughter.  He knew it, I knew it, and our relationship got ever better.

My dad lived for another fifteen years after my mother died.  He was living with us, and we were building a room onto our home for him.  Sadly, he died during the construction, and I was inconsolable for quite some time.  We decided to continue building the room, even though I didn’t have the heart for it, and our contractor told us my dad had confided he didn’t think he’d be around to enjoy it.  This is the room I sit in whenever I write Tea and Sarcasm and where his ashes are, up on the top of a shelf commingled with my mom’s and with a plaque from his office that says “quiet please, genius at work” and a picture of him taken on a fishing trip we went on where he’s trying unsuccessfully to suppress a smile.  It’s been eight years since he died.  I wish he could see his granddaughters because he was so incredibly proud of them, even though he’d never say it.  He was like that, often keeping his own counsel, but I know he would be busting his buttons at the smart young women they’ve become.

Everybody says a girl marries a man who reminds her of her father.  My husband has a beard and mustache where my father spent his life clean-shaven.  My husband is the opposite political party affiliation from my father.  My husband does not get apoplectic over politics, he is a much quieter person, does not insist on things being a particular way, and he will never suffer from high blood pressure.  But he has integrity, is charitable, and loves me whole-heartedly.  He busts his buttons over his daughters, insists on making brunch every Sunday, and pats my backside.

I am a lucky woman.

 

This is exactly how my dad would respond to this question.  Also, how do you feel?  With my hands!

This is exactly how my dad would respond to this question. Also, how do you feel? With my hands!

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My Exhausting Night with Hugh

Good Lord, that man….

I am exhausted.  From his opening bounce, I was ecstatic because that’s one of my particularly favorite clips from Bobby Van and I thought “No way, in a tux and regular shoes?”  But bounce he did, although he did take a couple of breaks which from my very athletic and 0% body fat view (do I even need to show the sarcasm font here?) seemed like cheating, but when you are Hugh Jackman and you clearly are in primo physical shape, you get to take a break whenever you want.

I watch people like him and the back-up dancers and the clearly boneless Neil Patrick Harris and people who can jump up onto a step with both legs and I marvel.  I don’t think my body has ever worked like that, not even when I was a fearless four-year-old who could accomplish anything.  My body just doesn’t work that way.  Why?

Is it because I never had dancing lessons?  Is it because I was never a runner?  Is it because all of my favorite things to do (knitting, reading, watching movies, drinking tea, drawing) require sitting?  Is it something I can blame on my parents?  Because I’m always looking for something or someone to blame!  Who the hell invented food to be so tasty?  Can I blame him/her?  Why don’t my legs or my arms bend like Hugh’s?  Was he born with the svelte gene?  Where does all that energy come from?  Is he one of those people who surreptitiously suck all the energy out of other people when they’re not looking, like some weird episode of Doctor Who?  Does he live at the gym?  What did we do before we had gyms?  Why do we have gyms?  Why isn’t taking a nice walk in the evening or the early morning equivalent to however many crunchy-thrusty things people with six-pack abs tell you are necessary for your survival?

AND HE SINGS WHILE HE’S DOING ALL THAT STUFF.  Look, I can either sing OR I can move.  I can’t do both and still look like I’m human.  I was admiring the tap-dancing gangsters and realized they’re doing all those moves in suits.  With shirts and ties and stuff.  How are they not ripping their clothes and sweating buckets and having their makeup run down in a very grotesque way?  What is the secret?  And the guy who won for Genie in Aladdin?  How does he make awesome moves like that eight times a week and maintain his very impressive size?  I could maintain that size OR I could bust the moves.  (Alright, I could bust the moves with some serious help.)  How is that even done?  How is he not wringing out a towel of his sweat wearing a costume and makeup and moving and singing and under the hot lights?

Just another way to make me feel inadequate.  Thanks a lot, Tonys.

 

gym

Sing it, bro.

 

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Blech

1. Bronchitis is not a fun illness to have. You don’t get to hunker down with your knitting because of the need to stop every five minutes to hack up a lung.

2. Hall’s Honey Lemon cough drops are my new food group.

3. I now remember the new-baby-no-sleep fog in a new and vivid way, complete with unexpected naps in the middle of the day.
4. Snuggling down in bed at the end of the day was something I always looked forward to. Now I’m trying new positions of vertical assistance to my lungs while still attempting a reclining position. I might get it soon. So far, not so much.

5. I sound like an old dog that’s too tired to bark effectively.

6. Coughing is very hard work. Like, impossible to keep your head balanced on your shoulders hard work.

7. Everything is louder at 3:25 in the morning.

8. Particularly coughing.

9. Throats should be designed with a small flap to get in there and scratch that itch.

10. These antibiotics better kick in soon. I have yarn to knit.

 

Image

Five minutes after posting this, Younger Daughter presented me with a paper crown and inquired about my upcoming tea choice. That’s power, people.

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