round island

Birch Pt. Beach Blahg Archives
January 2006

Sun. January 1:

Assuming the rest of the day goes as well as this, the beginning of 2006 is a marked improvement over the last days of 2005. Whether the year as a whole is better or worse cannot be foreseen. But we're off to a darn decent start. Fingers crossed. Thanks to those who seemed a bit worried about me for understanding that it was really okay for me to spend New Year's Eve alone. I promise that this will not begin a trend but this year it was the right thing. Good Morning and Happy New Year!

Mon. January 2:

Grok grok grok. La la la. Ninety-nine bottles of listerine on the wall. Ninety-nine bottles FROGGY!!!! grokGROK? glurp glub hic burp So *that* is what you were up to while we were in Kalamazoo! I was wondering why the car was so quiet today. You know better than that! I was gonna throw that vile, disgusting stuff down the toilet, where it belongs! grok grok grokka? And you know that you are not supposed to be flying buoy 22 around the neighborhood. I am in enough trouble with the Coast Guard as it is! glorp hicburp Now, go get into your laundry basket and sleep it off! grok burp hic tre-guuuurth-a Amphibians, sigh...

Tue. January 3:

It has been a long time since I have greeted January 1 of any year with a hangover and this year was no exception, especially since I couldn't face the idea of even one measly champagne toast the night before. My hangover hit in full force this morning, January 3, as I forced myself to dredge up all of the pqperwork and other crap that I carefully stashed before the holidays hit. An 8-page bank statement chock full of debits that I had no record of because they represented gifts (to me, mainly) or trips to the hardware store that I tried to ignore. Yeah, I can look that stuff up on-line and I usually do but, around xmas time, I just think, why bother? Spending is totally out of control at this time of year anyway. And then there's the loverly $300-plus gas/electric bill. If I get *really* energetic, I will look up last year's December bill and try to determine if the new furnace has made any difference. I mean in terms of gas consumption. Dollar-wise, it is definitely about the same. And then I forced myself to call Howard Cooper and schedule *two* vee-hickles for maintenance since the indicator lights in both of them have been on for an eternity. Last but not least, I should have thrown that damn Listerine down the toilet where it belongs but I didn't. I threw it down the kitchen sink instead. And I do not know what is going on but even though I have run the garbage disposal several times this afternoon, I can still smell Listerine every time I get anywhere near the sink. Which only serves to remind me of being sick. Blick. Kills the germs that cause bad breath. Yeah. And just about everything else under the sun too. Prob'ly rotting the pipes. Onward.

Uh, yeah. pqperwork. I like it. I don't think I'll change it :-P

Wed. January 4:

thweeeet .... thweeeet .... thweeet ... What the heck was *that*? thweeeet ... thweeeet.... It was dark at 6:30 this morning when I walked outside. And wet and foggy and really kind of creepy. I started walking and ... thweeeet ... thweeeet ... Is someone (read: bad person) trying to get my attention? Is it just some strange-sounding car alarm? Or an alien!? Where is it coming from? Between the Perry's and the Spanglers? No. Now it's coming from *my* house. Eeeeek! I kept turning around and around trying to figure out where the noise was coming from. And the noise kept on following me. Until I realized that the noise was following me because it was in my head. Or, more specifically, in my headphones. Somehow or other, out of the random and raggly little assortment of music on my iPod, I had managed to select the VEGGIE ORCHESTRA! Not really the best music to walk to. Well, maybe except for that one march.

Thu. January 5:

Yesterday, an old friend from my days at the EPA sent a special message to me via the GG: "Tell her it's only 29 days until Ground Hog Day." Countdown to Ground Hog Day? Yeah. I cannot remember the last time the sun made anything but the weakest, watery-est appearance. Apparently it actually rises every day because the street lights eventually turn off for a few hours. And all that snow we got all the way through December? Gone, except for the moldering yellow-gray remains of a few snowbanks here and there. And those people who actually put up xmas lights this year have already taken them down or turned them off or whatever. Even friends of mine who are Jewish were wondering about that. I dunno. If I were the kind of person who got depressed easily, I would be there now. But what did I do today? Walked 10 miles, including trucking cross-town to Howard Cooper to retrieve the second vee-hickle from the service shop in as many days. No more dashboard lights! Shopped for groceries and a new light fixture for the kitchen. Fused and over-stitched fabric like a fiend. Set up a music stand in Liz's room and ripped through the Andersen Etudes, opus 15. Yay for sightreading! (flute sightreading inspired by Karen) Checked out classes I want to take in the next couple years. Turned on my one little string of xmas lights. Plotted and planned a bit. (I won't say about what ;-) What else? I dunno. Who cares? Ground Hog Day is coming up!

Fri. January 6:

Whew! A long day of chasing a runaway amphibian flying around town on a shipping navigation buoy. I do not know why some people think that it is difficult for me to deal with the so-called empty nest syndrome. Empty nest, you say? There is a veritable menagerie here that I have been assigned to keep track of. Froggy grok grok grok and his sidekicks Smokie ooh ooh ooh ah ah and Clammy (Clammy is largely a silent partner) and Moley, king of dirty socks. Actually, Moley seems to have gone missing, prob'ly a casualty of the Great Tornado Siren Adventure back in about 1998. I'm sure he'll turn up, prob'ly Froggy'll unearth him when we least expect it. And there are about a million other aminals who decline to associate with Froggy. Anyway, Froggy has held a grudge against me ever since I got rid of the POC, a vee-hickle that he loved to drive and routinely stole from me for joy-rides around the neighborhood. He will ride in a Honda if there is no other choice but he views the idea of driving one with absolute, total disdain. So today, Mouse called me up and asked me how Froggy et al were doing and I realized that I had no idea where he was! A quick inspection of the back yard revealed that buoy 22 was also missing and as it turned out, I found Froggy and his entourage flying around the city at low altitude, scouring the streets for the POC with the goal of stealing it from its new owner. I dunno, baby girls do present a few challenges, especially when they emulate dinosaurs, but amphibians? Why on earth was I ever crazy enough to adopt that frog? And yes, I did reel him in, along with buoy 22. Again...

Sat. January 7:

One day of sun. Now we have ice. And sirens. Everywhere. All morning. You guys, it's winter and this is Michigan (duh). So slow down already.

Sun. January 8:

<hohum>Started out at Lowe's to buy a new kitchen light fixture for over the sink. The old one was probably installed when the house was built back in 1959. Earlier this week when I tried to change the light bulb, the socket crumbled. New light fixture. So exciting. What I really want to do is gut my kitchen and completely re-do it. It is truly the ugliest kitchen on earth and the floor is such a mess that I have all but given up even cleaning it. Why bother? It doesn't make it look one iota better. I just wait until somebody complains that it's sticky. Anyway, I finally dragged the GG out of Lowe's and we drove over to Parker road and made our way south via dirt roads. After a month or so of constant cloud cover, the sun was blinding. But who's complaining? Got down to Lenawee County, turned east, then north and home, where I've been fusing and overstitching fabric for the rest of the afternoon. It is *hot* here when you are playing around with an iron and I have been melting all afternoon. I cannot wait until the GG goes to work tomorrow so I can turn the blasted heat down!</hohum>

Mon. January 9:

As my brother the engineer was once heard to say, enthusiastically no less, "the whole world is a story problem!" Roight. I liked math except for story problems, but here is one anyway: The Commander was born on Richard M. Nixon's 8th birthday. If he were alive now, he would be 93 today. So, how old is The Commander? Anyway, HAPPY BIRTHDAY mom. Tell Grandroobly to watch out for those olives. They've been soaking in gin all night. The pic above (or to the right or wherever it is) is The Commander back in high school days and here's a more recent one. If you would like to command that The Commander have a happy birthday and do not have her contact info (her email changed this fall) give me a shout. And since I cannot seem to get hold of The Commander this morning, that can only mean one thing. It is corn chowder day at Penny's Kitchen.

Tue. January 10:

Oook! That was most definitely NOT fun! I hope I do not ever have to do it again. I guess exterminator is one career I am just not cut out for.

Wed. January 11:

I didn't necessarily get a whole lot done today. Partly I was a bit blocked on a project and partly I was trying to do about 100 things at once and, as usual, that meant that nothing got done particularly well. One thing I did manage to do was remove all the cosmic debris from the front of my refrigerator. Elizabeth's *high school* senior picture was on there, so it was definitely high time. But I think what really pushed me over the edge was that I was sick and tired of looking at Michael Moore and his bags of Doritos. A YAG parent sent me that little item in 2004 along with a pre-registration form for the summer camp. I have never been *exactly* sure why and I am not an expert on Michael Moore, so maybe there's some kind of little inside joke that I'm not privy to. Anyway, the whole thing was just bizarre enough for Mr. Moore to join my little refrigerator gallery of rogues. He fit in well with Vicki's real estate magnet, Burke's letter to the editor, and the dead bird photo. But I have had enough of him, so today I scanned him and his chips and then disposed of him. Bye.

And last but not least, happy birthday to Gay! Us Courtois Capricorns have to stick together. I do not think there are very many of us and we tend to get drowned out by all the Tauruses. Come to think of it, the Fin family has a few Tauruses too. Can you say "stubborn and obstinate"? >>;->

Thu. January 12:

Today was the first day of the one class I am taking this semester. It is a business class, "Business on the Internet" and it is required for the "Web Professional Advanced Certificate". I have never taken a business class before so it ought to be interesting. It was fun and I liked the teacher. I hope I pass. There were three other classes offered this semester that I was interested in but one was canceled, another occurs on Monday morning (when I have a long-standing coffee date with Marci) and the third runs at a simultaneous time with the class I'm already taking. It's okay. I have a few other little projects going that are going to keep me busy, not to mention a little road trip. I am overdue for a road trip. As Pooh once said, I'm not on the 4-year plan here anyway.

<boring-school-blahg>I have now taken (and passed :-) the six classes required to earn the "Web Technology Certificate". I have also taken two (out of six) of the classes that are required for the "Web Professional Advanced Certificate". And a third is the one I'm taking this semester. So, I'll need three more classes to earn that one, two of which are taught by one of my favorite teachers and that means they are notoriously DIFFICULT. Lots of writing, critical thinking and group projects (like, duh, U R in kollege). A third certificate I want to get is "Web Application Developer". There are three other certificates but I doubt I will do those, partly because two of them involve graphic design and that just might kill me. But there are individual classes I want to take in just about all of the certificate programs. Plus, to get the "Web Application Developer" certificate, I need a couple of courses in the computer science department (C++ and/or Perl and/or whatnot -- there are choices, I won't try to elaborate) and, in looking *that* department over, there are a couple other classes I want to take there, too, XML is the one I can remember off-hand. Does all that make sense? I didn't think so.</boring-school-blahg>

Aaaand, we are off!

Fri. January 13:

I am apparently still green after all these years and it ain't always easy being green. grok grok whaddya mean? grok I am also bluer than I used to be so that is a little strange. ick. blue. you are a wimp. grok grok Penny's Kitchen for lunch anyone?

Sat. January 14:

Lemme see... Breakfast at Frank's. The waitress told Ruby that he had a whole hour of mingling ahead of him and to leave his cousin Grandroobly alone so she could take Grandroobly's order. The Commander made the mistake of asking what Mangosteen juice was and we almost didn't make it outta there alive. Multiple trips to various hardware stores ensued as the GG installed motion-sensor lights along the porch or whatever you want to call it. Homework for me, mostly, and The Commander surfed the internet via Stumble Upon (Firefox extension, get it now). The GG found a 1960 newspaper up in the attic. Although it reports on Eisenhower declining to take a trip to Japan because of Communist activities and the Nixon/Kennedy campaign (which I actually remember), the most interesting story had to do with the ferry from Sault Ste. Siberia, Michigan to Sault Ste. Siberia, Ontario. At that time, we used to be able to *walk* to Canada via that ferry. There was no bridge. Well, there was a railroad bridge. Anyway, it was not until 1964 that we could drive to Canada via a bridge. It was the International Bridge and I think we drove to Canada and back the first night it opened and I think it was Halloween. We did a similar thing the first night the Mackinac Bridge opened in 1957, I remember it, I was 3.

Sun. January 15:

Happy birthday to the Grinch! He is spending his birthday working and Radical Betty (his mommy) is making him a steak dinner tonight. Since I don't really have anything much to talk about today (bark bark grok grok ooh ooh ooh ah ah), I will dedicate another post to capricorns. I missed Donna's birthday but she was 4 on the 4th and here are a few pics from Joannie and Donny. Other than that, it is pretty darn cold up here but there is not enough snow to ski and I do not really believe in astrology or intelligent design or any other kind of claptrap. So there.

Mon. January 16:

Phew! Ka-whomp! Jet lag! I have been traversing the Mackinac Bridge for almost 50 years now and I think this is the first time it has ever made me even a tad bit nervous. Windy? Yeah man. Enough to make a Honda Accord feel just a wee bit unstable. And that takes some doing. At least compared to a Jeep Wrangler or one of them thar boxy, old-style Chrysler mini-vans like our old red '89 mini-van that we got rid of when we bought the POC, which was actually pretty good in the wind (the POC, not the red van). But I was glad to get across it today. And now I am gonna take a walk and try to pull myself out of the haze because there is no food here and I do not want to fall face down into my plate at Zanzibar tonight. Onward!

Tue. January 17:

Hmmm. Sandals with polartech socks and NO umbrella. Bad idea :-/

Wed. January 18:

Thundersnow and two hours later, my hair is still soaking wet. Cold? Yeah.

Thu. January 19:

Lizard Breath, lamenting the fact that her beautiful almost-2-year-old 12" G4 powerbook needs a new hard drive: "Moom, I do not understand it. You do such awful things to your computer. You make it do work all the time and you put it in your car about every 2-1/2 minutes and drag it all over hell and gone and it's dirty and dusty and grimy and you touch the screen. You are a computer's worst nightmare! And mine mostly stays in my bedroom and I NEVER touch the screen or get dirt and grime on the keyboard but it's broken and I have to go through all this shit to send it back and get it fixed."

Those are her approximate words and you can rest assured she did not say "all over hell and gone" or "all this shit." But she is right. I do all of those horrible things. Not to mention that my 12" G4 powerbook is on its second power cord and *third* battery and this battery settled itself in even worse than the *second* battery did, so sometimes it sorta rattles around a little bit. And FROGGY grokGROK regularly commandeers the whole shebang and throws it around and slimes it up and takes over my blahg, etc. grook. I have been *hard* on this thing. I dunno why it is still alive and my fingers are crossed that this blahg entry hasn't jinxed it because I need it to work for another couple years or so.

So to Liz and others with computer woes: Shit happens. We bought a brand new top-dollar Honda a few years back that turned out to have a bad alternator. I swear, every single blasted dashboard light came on at once and it took them five whole days to get the damn car back to us. I was pissed. That was POC-like behavior. Hondas are supposed to be perfect or something. But it did get fixed, it has never broken down again (knock on wood) and we have since added another Honda to the fleet. Shit just happens. Y'all, try hard to not sweat the small stuff because Life will definitely have more difficult stuff to throw at you. Love, Volcano Mama (and the Red Hot Lava Girls)

P.S. I will not be buying a MacBook Pro any time soon. I don't have the cash and they don't have what I want, which is a 12" screen. But I'm curious about what you other MacFolks think? John, are you going to buy one? Anybody else?

Fri. January 20:

The Marquis of Axe: "Sounds like global warming has not knowing how to deal with winter. Personally I prefer Tevas, shorts & a T-shirt, another balmy January day." I think the Marquis must've hired a dinosaur to type that >:->> because I do not quite understand it. I'm sure the meaning is prob'ly something like, "Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah, you are in the Great White North and I am in St. Louie, so you are cold and I am not." Layer up and layer down and one layer I have not had to wear this winter (yet) is snow pants :-P

Sat. January 21:

I was beginning to think that I would not get a chance to ski at all this year and I didn't expect the skiing to be any good this weekend. We've had snow this winter but it has been at random times and it usually disappears quickly. There were snow forecasts for last night all over the state but it was 50 in A2 and we had dry pavement all the way up to the Luxurious Courtois Palace on Houghton Lake. Less than about a half hour after we got here, the sky started dumping great big flakes of snow and when I got up in the morning, there was at least 8-10" on the ground. We started out doing the 6K at Beaver Creek. My ski tips were under the snow most of the time. Then we did, oh, I dunno, about 6-7K at the ski ranch. It was gorgeous. Warm and sunny and lots of snow. If I do not get to ski again this winter, and I may not, I am happy! Even though I may look like an old prune in one of the pics.

The last time I had a completely ski-less winter was way back when the kids were babies. It was always interesting trying to ski with little kids and sometimes it was just more trouble than it was worth. There are certainly moments when they think x-c skiing is fun but then there are the times when they're too cold or too hot or their skis are too long or too short or their boots hurt or they are just plain sick and tired of being dragged through the woods.

The first weekend we rented skis for Mouse, she was not quite three years old. She had *tiny* little red skis and boots that matched her snowsuit and the first day out, she loved it. The next day she was a whole lot less enthusiastic but finally we got her to put the skis on and go outside. But then I made a terrible mistake and suggested that Mouse and I should just do the "little-kid loop." "I do NOT want to do the little kid loop!!" And then she deteriorated into a general meltdown and finally I just picked her up, skis and all, and carried her into the ski ranch. Bob the owner asked if we were finished and I said, "Yes! For the rest of the winter." And then there was the time that she was almost five. We were way out in the netherland of the 5K "Manitou" loop and she was tired and I was carrying both her poles and my poles and holding her hand. We were trudging slowly along, left in the dust by the GG and Lizard Breath. I was thinking we were never going to get back to the lodge but Mouse apparently had other stuff on her mind because all of a sudden she said, "Mom, I've been thinking about volcanoes too much." I sure wish I could remember the rest of *that* conversation. Similar stuff to the Phantom Tollbooth moment I guess.

Anyway, there were a whole bunch of years that I mostly skied slowly, shuffling along behind little kids. They do grow up though, and the last time I went skiing with Mouse, we were on a 5-mile loop and I might as well have been skiing alone, she was so far ahead of me! And she wanted to do the 8-mile!

Sun. January 22:

Guest blahg anyone? Guess not, eh? Okay, I am toadily roto right now. Got up. Couldn't find my credit cards et al at all. Anywhere. I had them at the Spikehorn last night. I got out my debit card to pay and then Doug grabbed the check. Doug and Kathy, we owe you! Anyway, I was sure I put that card back. I keep my plastic cards in the right zip pocket of my ski jacket all winter. The only way they can fall out is if the zipper is undone and the coat is turned upside down. I didn't THINK I had done that. And then, on the way out of the bar, I realized I didn't have my ski band, so I went BACK and searched around until I found it. If I had dropped my cards by the table, I would've SEEN them! We went straight home from the Spikehorn and did not go out again. So, where the heck could they be. I searched the car, setting the car alarm off in the process (sorry, y'all). No luck. So, I took off walking around the point and the GG was right that I was stewing about it all the way around. Got back. More searching. Car again. Everyone was offering helpful advice. Did you have a purse last night? No. Etc. I was just about resigned to the idea of driving over to the Spikehorn to look for them in the snow. They don't serve breakfast (I don't think), so I knew we couldn't ask about them inside until later. Sigh. It is always so much fun to cancel your cards and wait two weeks for replacements. And get a new driver's license. Etc. And we only had something like $23 cash on us because it is so easy to rely on plastic. But then. The GG checked my jacket. "Yip yip yip nag nag, they aren't in there. I've checked it a million times!" And they weren't in the pocket that I usually put them in. But they WERE in one of the other seven or eight pockets! Sheesh. Y'all, if you are missing anything, a TV remote control or dirty socks or whatever, it is probably in one of my ski jacket pockets. And thanks y'all for putting up with me panicking about a relatively trivial thing! Not to mention my car alarm.

So, Ron's for breakfast, since we could now "afford" it ;-) And more skiing at Beaver Creek. Back to the cabin to say good-bye to Jackie (spelling?) and clean up and hash out all of the problems of the world one more time. And then, on the road for home. Back in two weeks? Maybe so. Next week is the folk fest. Think snow!

Mon. January 23:

<grrr>I guess that prune face might apply today even if it didn't on Saturday. Ya know, I just do not want that old television set around here. We already have three old TV sets around here. We aren't even sure that this one works. And you (you know who you are) do NOT have time to fix it. I am trying really hard here to make some progress in my life. I need to generate some kind of positive cash flow, as much for my own self-esteem as for income. And I am absolutely totally utterly positively sick to death of living in a house that has all of this stuff in it. I don't want to get into any kind of stupid, petty argument about who has the most stuff. I know how much crap I have. I want to get rid of a lot of that too. Somehow, we have to get to the point where there is a NEGATIVE flow of stuff into this house. Or I am going to go nuts. Hmmm, maybe that's what some people might want ;-) I am making VERY small inroads on organizing stuff around here. It EXCRUCIATINGLY hard and SLOW going. It is just about the last thing I feel like doing. Sort through everything and agonize about whether somebody'll be mad if I throw something out (prob'ly) or if I'll miss something (prob'ly not). I wish I could just rent a dumpster and hire a bulldozer. I want to start over. I do not want that old television. We already have three old TV sets. We don't even know if this one works. And you do not have time to fix it.</grrr>

Tue. January 24:

JHMK, today was certainly a long struggle against the elements. It took every single last ounce of strength to muster the focus required to even progress by a measly few inches. In the end, I took an overwhelming loss as a tree branch reached out and grabbled my ski band and head phones.

Uh, yeah, grabbled. Actually, I think that's a pretty good word and I'm gonna keep it ;-)

Wed. January 25:

Karen says: "Heard on the news and on NPR that January 24th is statistically the 'most-depressing day of the year'." I do not know if my mood yesterday could exactly have been called "depression." Anger would probably be a better term. Whatever the mood, it was NOT a particularly good day and it has been a STRANGE week. I think I am in need of a nice vacation. Five weeks would be just about right >:->>

Thu. January 26:

Update: I wrote the sorry little story below before I looked at Karen's blahg which reports on a true tragedy. Perspective, anyone? Sigh.

When I was a little kid, The Commander used to tell me about how my grandmother had once sewed her finger. On a sewing machine. This grandmother was her mother, Emily Lathers MacMullan, whom I never met because she died in a car accident when The Commander was 15. I have no doubt that one of the reasons The Commander told me the story was to discourage me from asking her if I could use her sewing machine at the ripe old age of three or whatever I was. (I'm sure I have fractured that story in some way and it is up to The Commander to set me straight.)

Anyway, folks, I have lived to sew my own finger! Does this run in the family or what? Yesterday afternoon, I was down in the dungeon working on a little sewing project. I was really proud of myself for doing something constructive instead of hanging around being mad at people who have an affinity for old junky television sets, etc. I was running my little old Viking about 100 mph in a circular motion on the back side of a piece of fused fabric. I had metallic thread in the bobbin with the idea of adding some sparkle to the surface of the fabric. It was going to be a fish bag. Correct that. It still *will* be a fish bag. Underwater scene, that is.

And then. Crrrrrrack! Pieces of needle went everywhere, including right straight through the middle finger of my right hand. Keee-reist! "Did I really just do that?", I thought, looking incredulously at the hole in my fingernail. Inspection of the underside revealed the tip of a piece of needle. I spent about ten minutes trying to extract the dern thing by myself but sanity slowy returned. What if there is more than one piece in there and I don't get them all out? What if my finger gets gangrene and I lose it? I am also a flutist and although I think I could sew and type without a fingertip, I doubt that I would be happy trying to re-learn the flute minus a fully functioning finger. Other people have done it but I do not want to go there.

So, I drove myself two blocks to the urgent care facility and sheepishly asked the receptionist if they had someone there who could extract a needle out of my finger. A fellow patient who overheard me offered to do it for $10 and I bet that's about the equivalent of what it probably would've cost back when Emily MacMullan did it. I do not really want to know how much it costs now. Too much, I will guess. Two hours later, two x-ray sessions later, and two sets of tweezers later, it was out and I was finally outta there. The doc, who I think was handling every room in the whole place (someone was vomiting in one of them, ick), had a bit of difficulty pulling the dern thing out and kept asking me if I was okay, which I most definitely was. After a little bit, she said something I hadn't even though of, "you know, it didn't look like it was embedded in the bone on the x-ray but maybe it is." Yeeesh! Is real live surgery in my future? Yikes. Fortunately and literally a split second later, she said, "It's out!" And so it was. Phew. I took (brought?) it home in a styrofoam cup. I politely refused a dressing. I didn't really need one. You can see the hole through my fingernail and you can see where it came out on the other side. It doesn't hurt. At all. I can still type like the wind. It isn't bleeding. There are only a few particles of blood on my keyboard. They'll go well with all the sweat, tears, dust, crumbs, grime, and frog slime. grokGROK! Why didn't you take me over to that place? grok grok. I love to play with those x-ray machines. grok grok. I got to go with Shuggy that time she broke her arm, remember? grook. I am a good frog. I miss Shuggy. Grok grok grokka.

Fri. January 27:

The Beautiful Renee writes from San Francisco, "lots of good fortune has befallen me in SF these days. Amazing job, successful start to grad school (with scholarship!), and new apartment with a gorgeous view of San Fran. I pinch myself constantly!" Her dad, aka Bob, the Uncliest Uncle of them all, is very proud of Renee's success and has been asking me to guest blahg her all week. Until I heard from Renee, I was a bit hesitant. When my own kids accomplish something cool, before they even tell me what it is, they always say something like, "Don't put this in your stoopid blahg, Moom." But Renee said, "I don't think MY mom is about to start a blog anytime soon, so you are FREE to gab about me. ;)" I can't for the life of me understand why Gay would *not* want to put all of her inner thoughts out on the Internet. Can y'all? ;-) Anyway, congratulations to Renee on her academic scholarship (uh, that means they are giving her money because she gets really good grades) and good luck :-) Grok grok. You can put me (grok) in yer blahg any time. Grok grok. I do all kinds-a neat stuff. Grok. Roight, Froggy. Go clean your laundry basket.

Sat. January 28:

Earlier this week, Sam (archaeologist, not dog) emailed me a link to her new blahg. I posted the link over there on the left nav but didn't get around to saying anything about it because other stuff kept coming up. I mean, needles in fingers cannot be ignored, can they? ;-) I have known Sam since college. She was initially a friend of Jay's and I first met her one summer day on Radical Betty's back deck. For whatever reason, we didn't connect in any kind of permanent way that day but eventually she got to be just about the best of my best friends of all time. Whatever else we do or do not have in common, we are definitely not "silly" girly-girls, although we have been known to act pretty dern silly in our own way! We have had some wild times and one of these days when I am in just the right mood, I will write the classic story of the DNA neanderthal. Sam and John have lived down in Atlanta for years now and for about nine years, we were disconnected as I was overwhelmed with kids and Sam was doing archaeological stuff and working on her thesis. But we got connected again and the Internet has helped us stay that way. So here's her blahg. You can read about me in "origins" (left nav, scroll down) and also check the left nav for a whole bunch of links to archaeological stuff she has been involved in, most of which goes right over my head with an big whooshing noise! :-) :-)

Sun. January 29:

grok grok grok. la la la la. Seven old ladies were locked in a lavatory. grok grok grok. They were in there from Monday through Saturday. la la la. Grok grok gr oops! FROGGY!?!?!! What on *earth* is going on? And what are you doing with that blonde hair dye and that eye make-up? And how did you manage to steal those socks from Aunt Kathy? Grook. I'm gettin' ready for my fan club! grok grok. La la la. And there was Granny. grok grok la la. Swingin' on the (grok) outhouse door. grok grok la la la. WHAT FAN CLUB? Since when did *you* acquire a fan club? And why? Grok grok. Hey, you old witch, I am a celebrity! grok frok grroook. Remember those guys that (grok) were here yesterday? grok grok *They* obviously came over here to see ME! grok grok grok. la la la I am such a beautiful green and purple frog. grok grook And now I'm gunna have beeyoootiful (grok) blonde hair just like those (grok grok) surfer frogs in the movies. grook grook. And beeyootiful long (grok) eyelashes too. Grok grok. Um, Froggy... "Those guys" were Scott and Doug. They are your owner's cousins and they stopped here for a minute on their way to Chicago. YOU insinuated yourself into the conversation. They did NOT come here to see you! grok grok grok. They did too come here to see me. grok grok Why the heck would they want to visit (grok) an old bag like you? grok grok. Sigh. Whatever. P.S. I think that blonde hair and long eyelashes are just going to make you look like you are in drag. And you are already wearing a babushka. So.

Mon. January 30:

Glarg. I know y'all have heard this from me before and are prob'ly sick and tired of hearing it but I am so sick and tired of trying to think of what to cook every night. I dunno, I am just not all that interested in thinking about food at this stage of the game. It has been weeks since I was sick so it is not that. So, does anybody have any good recipes? Grok grok. Flea and fly fruitcake! grok (Ignore him.) We eat just about anything except icky stuff like liver and brain. grook Spider soup! grok frook (Froggy, go find something constructive to do.) Every time I ask the GG what he wants to eat, he says something like "sauerkraut." grok grok. A nice mouse mousse is tasty. grok grok. Or worm casserole. Grok grok (FROGGY!) I am not a German cook and I do not like sauerkraut. Ah well, I know it is pointless to even ask this question because it seems like just about every woman I know who is over about 40 is completely sick and tired of thinking about what to cook. We are all in the same boat. At least I do not have to get lunch for the GG every day like some people have to do for their accomplices. Oooops. Just a minute. (FROGGY, I said to go do something CONSTRUCTIVE. You are headed out to the backyard toward buoy 22 with a bottle of listerine in your hand and that is NOT what I had in mind. grok grok grok Hey, will one of you girls come and get this beast before I hang him out on the clothesline or something? GROKGROKGROKGROK Yeah, I wanna go to Kalamazoo! grokGROK)

Tue. January 31:

It's okay little skunk. I will just back up a bit here and you can slowly amble your way across the street. That's *two* close encounters this week. I do not really know anything about the habits of skunks but sometime around the time of the spring thaw they seem to get active just before dawn and the smell permeates my house as they make their way through my yard. Except that this is the *January* thaw. We are quite a long way from spring right now. And when I walk early in the morning it is definitely still dark and I am never sure when that little round bush over there or that ucky old snow pile or that rock will start moving and reveal the big white streak across its back. Maybe I would be wise to stock up on tomato juice.