Monday, July 28, 2014

Curious as a Cat

(Link in meme-roll)

1) What do you think of 3D movies?
I have yet to see one of the newer kind. I'm not a fan generally--the glasses give me a horrible case of motion sickness--and I don't see the need for me to be IN the movie. I got to watch, not participate.
2) If you could learn one extreme sport for free, what would it be?
Since there is literally no way this will every happen, I've always thought street luge looked like a complete blast, and dangerous as HELL!
3) What nearby museums, galleries, or theaters are your favorites?
There is a local (live) theater that was built about 125 years ago and has been refurbished and kept fairly current with lights and staging. The theater companies that use it do a nice job, but we haven't been to a show in a long time. Maybe I should see about season tickets this year.... There's a train museum fairly close by, but no actual art galleries of note. However, we're a mere 90-minute train ride from one of the world's biggest cities full of almost all the art, architecture, museums, and theater I could want.
4) Show and Tell. What comes to mind first when you see this picture? Or, tell a story if it reminds you of one.

Public Domain Photo
I really love butterflies. Just pictures--in real life they sort of scare me, although not as much as moths.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Sunday Stealing

(Link in meme-roll)
Me A to Z

A If you were an ANIMAL, what would you be?
I'd love to be some sort of canine. The universe being what it is, I'd probably end up as a potato bug, or a louse.
B BOOKS: What's on your reading list?
I've got Styx & Stone (Ziskin) sitting here ready to start once I finish Barbara Ehrenreich's latest. At work, Xom-B (Robinson) and the audiobook for Everything for a Dog (Martin) are waiting to check out. I have 11 other items on reserve there. And according to GoodReads, there are 20 books on my "Next" list, most of which have been there for months. Sigh...
C COMPULSIVE about anything?
Yeah a few things. I always lock my car door when I get out of it--even though I can do it from my key fob. Unfortunately, it's such a habit I regularly lock my keys in the car in the garage. I also try to put away my main work "tools"--mechanical pencil, eraser, small post-its, and book weight--before I go home every day. I do Unconscious Mutterings first thing after turning on the computer on Sunday mornings, followed immediately by PostSecret. Lots of other things that I do that, when I miss doing them, screw up my days completely.
D DREAMS - Do you ... dream in color? remember your dreams? keep a dream journal?
I dream in color, I remember some dreams, and my blog is my very occasional dream journal, among other purposes.
E EATING - what's your usual snack?
I vary widely, from granola to fruit to almonds to bread products to cookies.
F A few of your FAVORITE things:
Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.... OK, I like kittens and roses just fine, but favorite things? Hmm.... Diet Dr. Pepper. Bagels. Dogs. Quiet. Laughter with good friends. Dumb jokes. (Q: Where does George Washington keep his armies? A: In his sleevies) Not having to wear shoes. Napping in sunshine.
G GIGGLES! What (or who) makes you laugh? Do you have a good sense of humor?
Oops, looks like I jumped ahead. I laugh very hard at absurdity, which is convenient because there is a shit-ton of it around.
H major HOT Button:
Meanness for the sake of being mean.
I I am ______________ ...
...very sweaty right now, from rinsing out and putting a cooler in the car and helping Beast load a wagon in the car as well. Seriously? It's not even hot out, just freakin' humid as hell.
WHERE THE HELL IS J? J is an AWESOME letter! Booo!

K Also KNOWN As... Aliases? Screen names? A non [sic] de plume perhaps?
Well, Cat. certainly qualifies.
L I LOVE ...
...babies. Until they start making noise and stinking.
M How do you feel about MEETING people? Do it all the time? Rarely? Parties or 1-on-1?
I work at a reference desk in a library: I meet people every day. Most are just fine, nice, normal people. A few are scary as hell. The rest are just annoying.
N What's the story of your NAME? were you named after anyone? Do you go by a nickname? Any aliases?
My sisters named me because they felt my parents did such a lousy job with their names. They chose a name they like that belonged to a friend of one of theirs. No clue, really. The only rule for names in my house was they they couldn't be (easily) shortened into nicknames. So no Thomases (Tom, Tommy), no Susans (Sue, Suzy), etc. I wish they would have gone with my Dad's died-to-young sister and named me Rowena. Oh well.
O OBSERVANT - What's around you right now? What do you see?
Birthday gift, wrapped. Beast. Breakfast plate. Clipboard with crossword, pencil, and eraser. Book. Blankets. Three cans--one in use, two empty--of DDP. Three laptops (Beast is trying to fix Sparky's). TV with racecars on it.
P Who are the special PEOPLE in your life?
Beast, Sparky, my friends and family. Even when some family members annoy the shit out of me....
Q Any little QUIRKs about yourself:
No, no quirks; I'm perfectly rational. The rest of you are nucking futs.
R What do you like to do for RECREATION?
This. Read. Do crosswords. Sleep. Avoid my responsibilities (I'm very good at it). Alphabetize things.
S Do You SING in the shower? In the car? For your friends?
I sing along with the radio in the car sometimes (on the rare occasions when I'm listening to music). I never sing, or even talk, in the shower, and I try not to subject my friends to my singing except when I can't contain myself.
T What's at the top of your TO DO list?:
On my 'official' list is "Call Grant" (neighbor kid, about weeding) and "Go over credit cards with [Beast]." But otherwise, I need to clean the guinea pig cage when we get back from this thing today and also remake our bed with newly clean sheets.
U Any UNUSUAL experiences:
Loads. Daily ones. Working with the public is always unusual. I had a kid ask me last week why "fun size" candy is called that. He was mostly kidding, but his point was that "fun size" should be the HUGE bars, not the one-bite ones!
V VEGAS, Vienna, Venice, Vladivostok... How far have you traveled? What's your favorite city?
I was in Beijing about 29.5 years ago. My favorite city is Denver. And London.
W WINTER, Spring, Summer, Fall... What's your favorite season? What makes it special?
I love fall: less humidity, pretty colors, slightly cooler temps (not an issue this summer though), and crisp air. I don't like allergies that time of year, but the rest is lovely.
X EXes - Things you don't do anymore (but did, once (would you, again?))
I don't argue with drunks and/or fools anymore. I don't run (well, I can't, really). I don't feel guilty about nearly as much stuff as I used to. If I were 10 again, I might take up running, but otherwise I'm not interested in doing any of those things.
Y Any secret/deep YEARNINGS?
I really, REALLY wish I could learn to read ancient Greek. I'd love to see the Dead Sea Scrolls. And I'd love a personal guided tour of the Valley of the Kings in Egypt. Mostly, I wish I could talk to my dad and sisters again.
Z ZERO to ZENITH - Where are you in your life? Still growing? On an upward (or downward) curve? Just skating along?
I've pretty much adjusted to being on the slow downward slide at this point, but I'm focusing on "slow" and enjoying what I can. Work isn't lighting me up the way it used to, either. Not a particularly "happy" period of life right now, all the way around.

Unconscious Mutterings

(Link in meme-roll)
  1. Fish:: Hunt
  2. Dreaming :: Sleeping
  3. Living :: Working
  4. Expectations :: Lower your...
  5. Mug :: Cup
  6. Jacket :: Coat
  7. Bowl :: ...of cherries
  8. Confession :: Truth
  9. Socks :: Shoes
  10. Tank :: Cistern

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Patrick's Place

(Link in meme-roll)
Saturday Six

1. How old were you the first time you ever snapped a photo, even if using someone else’s camera?
I think I snagged someone's small camera after the Christmas of Cameras (all the kids got instamatics), but I mostly knew better than to touch "real" cameras (Dad's, Jan's, etc.). I had a mini-instamatic for our trip to England when I was 14. So stylin'!
2. Have you ever owned a film camera or developed your own photos?
Well, yeah, see above re instamatics. I still have a 35 mm AF sitting in plain sight on the bookshelf in the upstairs hall, but I haven't used it, or our digital camera, in years. Camera phone FTW. Jan used to have a darkroom and developed all his own (black-and-white) film; he's a dinosaur who categorically refuses to use digital media, still.
3. Who was the first person you remember taking a photo of?
I'm sure it was a family member, probably Dad.
4. Describe a photo from your childhood that means a great deal to you and why it does.
Here's the thing: Dad took dozens of photos a month, developed them onto slides, and all of those slides are at my brother's house where he said he'd organize them. I doubt he's done jack-shit, though, and there are at least two pictures I want. One is of me and my mom's brother Del, and another is of my brother sitting on the edge of a drop-off overlooking Dallas Divide* calmly taking a picture, holding his sunglasses in his teeth. When Dad took that picture, Mom was having "ten cat fits" about my brother being about a foot from the edge of a thousand-foot fall.
5. How many photo albums (or scrapbooks) do you have of old family photos?
My family was a big scrapbook-keeping family, but I have several from when I was addicted to Creative Memories in the 90s and early 00s; since then I've been very bad about keeping things in order....
6. How many photos (in total) do you have hanging on your walls in your home?
We FINALLY hung the photos that had been sitting on the front stairs for about 8 months. There are probably about 20 in the whole house, and 95% are on the wall of the stairway.
The view bro was going for, minus the trees in front.


(Swiped from Amy)

I love... hot days with no humidity. I'm living in the wrong place for that, but oh well.

Right now I want... Beast to be healthy. Feels like I've been saying that forEVer, too.

I feel like... a slug sitting here blogging instead of doing some of the many things I should be doing: wrapping a present, finding the gift receipt for the card, buying Sparky's fall textbooks, weeding, calling a neighbor about mowing our lawn this weekend, catching up on so many projects....

I hate it when... I give into my baser instincts and let my id run my life.

I fear... losing my grip on reality.

I'm lonely without... the Internet. And sometimes with it, too.

I need... to go fold laundry when I finish this.

Today I... did more shopping at more stores than I was in over the last two weeks. I'm becoming an agoraphobe.

Tomorrow I'm... going to a birthday party. Probably solo. And that means Monday I'll feel like death on a stick again. I hate allergies.

I just... told Beast I'd wake him up from his nap by about 5:30.

I want to meet... my grandchildren. Not immediately, of course, but sometime in the next decade, I hope.

I'm hungry for... the usual: sugar.

I love it when... I get to the end of the day feeling like I accomplished something, anything at all, that shows forward motion.

I'm afraid of... pain.

I'm listening to... NASCAR.

I'm wearing... black shorts and my dark-blue college alum T-shirt.

I wish I was in.. Colorado. Always.

I want to get... Sparky's computer fixed before fall semester starts.

I can't... figure out why I'm so weirded-out by my boss.

I'm nervous... all the time. On edge whenever Beast is within 100 miles of home.

My Mom thinks thought I'm/I was... "a surprise, NOT a mistake!" Honestly, I have no idea what she thought of me as an adult. She never said.

My Dad thinks thought I'm/I was... turning out pretty well. At least he gave me that impression.

I'm happy when... I'm playing with kids.

I'm sad when... I feel like a failure.

I'm disappointed that... I feel like a failure far too often.

I wish I looked like... myself when I was in my 20s. (stole that idea from Amy)

Saturday 9

(Link in meme-roll)
If you're not familiar with today's song, you can hear it here.

1) This song refers to the summer breezes and winds of mid-July. Now that July is almost over, how would you describe this month's weather where you are?
It has been a lot less awful than the usual summer weather. Cooler, and even some days with low humidity. I hope that continues through August, but I'll take what I can get.
2) The lyrics mention the "perfect plans." Do you have plans for today? Or will you just let this summer Saturday unfold?
I did my errands this morning--toy store for a gift, grocery store for food for tomorrow's birthday party/potluck (because seriously, only my idiot niece would make it a potluck party), and pet store for hay for the guinea pigs. Then home to try to see if Beast's pain level was lower. We just now realized that instead of taking pain meds yesterday, he took sleeping pills. So, yeah. Welcome to the House of Insanity, version 7.26.14.
3) This week's artist, k. d. lang, attended Red Deer Community College in Alberta. Red Deer's school colors are green, black and silver. What were your school colors?
High school was pale blue, white, and silver; college was orange, white, and dark blue.
4) She had a bit part in the 2006 murder mystery The Black Dahlia. Do you enjoy murder mysteries?
I love, L O V E, mysteries, though not James Ellroy's. Easily half of the fiction I read is mysteries, which outnumber every other 'genre' I have listed in GoodReads.
5) Ms. lang is a vegetarian. What's the last beef, chicken, pork or fish you ate?
I just had a cold piece of Papa Murphy's Chicago-Style Stuffed™ pizza left over from last night's aborted dinner--so salami, pepperoni, sausage, ground beef.
6) In 2000, when this song was released, California suffered a series of blackouts. Has your power gone out this summer?
Actually, we've had a good summer that way: a couple of short-lived outages while I was out of the house, but nothing major. Having said that, we'll lose power for the rest of the month now.
7) Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire also came out in 2000. Did you read it?
Of course I did, as soon as it was released! And I listened to it on CD too. And I saw the movie. I liked this one a lot.
8) Which would you rather have on your hot dog: sauerkraut, ketchup/mustard/relish or chili?
I'm not from around here, so I'll go with just mustard and ketchup. Or plain.
9) If you had your choice, which would you prefer: new shoes or a new wallet?
I just repaired my Packers wallet with black-with-white-polka-dots duct tape, so I'll have new shoes. Honestly, I haven't bought any new shoes for several months so I'm due, right? I only have about 4 dozen pairs already....

Friday, July 25, 2014

Friday Five

(Link in meme-roll)
  1. What is something you have run out of?
  2. Patience? Youth? Interest in my job? On a purely practical level, I think we're out of cheese and some other groceries, and hay for the guinea pigs.
  3. What is something you don't know anything about?
  4. I don't think I could even create a coherent thought about how internal combustion engines work, or physics. Sorry, Dad.
  5. What is something that needs emptying?
  6. We desperately need to weed our garden(s). We have 4-foot high weeds!
  7. There are a lot of stylistic or slangy ways to say “zero.” Which are your favorite?
  8. "Zip" or "zilch" are a couple I use a lot.
  9. When did you last receive something free when you were expecting to pay for it?
  10. I can't think of anything. I'm pretty careful about knowing what's for sale and what's not and how much things are going to set me back. Plus, I haven't been out in public shopping much lately.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Thursday 13

(Link in meme-roll)
First 13 Books Purchased This Century from Amazon
  1. Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary [2 copies]
  2. The Chicago Manual of Style : The Essential Guide for Writers, Editors, and Publishers (14th Edition) [2 copies]
  3. The Art of Peace : Nobel Peace Laureates Discuss Human Rights, Conflict and Reconciliation, by Jose Ramos-Horta (Editor), et al. [2 copies]
  4. A Book of Five Rings, by Miyamoto Musashi
  5. Why People Believe Weird Things : Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time, by Michael Shermer & Stephen Jay Gould
  6. If... Questions for the Game of Life, by Evelyn McFarlane, et al.
  7. Campus Life Exposed : Advice from the Inside, by Harlan Cohen
  8. Thomas the Tank Engine Says Good Night (Cloth Book), by Rev. W. Awdry
  9. Goodnight Moon Board Book, by Margaret Wise Brown
  10. A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812, by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
  11. Bush at War, by Bob Woodward
  12. Everything You Know Is Wrong: The Disinformation Guide to Secrets and Lies, by Russ Kick
  13. Newton on the Tee: A Good Walk Through the Science of Golf, by John Zumerchik
Most of these were gifts. I think there are only three that are still in this house, and only one was for me.
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