"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom" Albert Einstein

"A dame who knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up." Mae West

Friday, July 30, 2010

What have I been doing for nearly a week?

Among other things, I've been cleaning out this blog, deleting old irrelevant posts and (I know some of you will be disappointed) my 60 years in 60 days posts.  I'm working on a more detailed version to be read by my children  - only after my death.

I also changed my profile pic to an updated one. Although dark and a bit blurry, you can see that I haven't given up the long gray hair yet.  I'm beginning to look like an aging entertainer. (Why is it that only country western singers are willing to have long gray hair?)

 One of these days I'll make it into pigtails and really be cool.

Or I'll pin it all up on top of my head and start going to church.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Meme of Odd Questions - Part Three (will this never end?)

Courtesy of Sunday Stealing:

45. Favorite color?

The one I wrote about here.

46. Have you ever slapped someone?
Only in my dreams, but often.

47. Is your hair curly?
Which hair? Where?

48. What was the last CD you bought?
$5000, 60 day term

49. Do looks matter?
No, but when they turn to stares, it gets a bit creepy.

50. Could you ever forgive a cheater?
Never forgive, never forget.

51. Is your phone bill sky high?
The cell phone is sky high. The land line is low.

52. Do you like your life right now?
Well, I'm living it. If I didn't like it, I'd stop.

53. Do you sleep with the TV on?
It's too heavy and a bit warm for summer.

54. Can you handle the truth?
I once got caught handling the truth in the back seat of a car.

55. Do you have good vision?
I just told you this week I am an amblyope. You never listen to me.

56. Do you hate or dislike more than 3 people?
I actually hate 1 or 2, but dislike many more. I'm a loner for a reason.

57. How often do you talk on the phone?
Let's just say I have years of rollover minutes.

58. The last person you held hands with?
Howie Mandel. As a result he won't touch anyone else.

59. What are you wearing?
blue jeans and blue shirt, underwear and my birthday suit

 60. What is your favorite animal?
my monkey

61. Where was your favorite picture taken at?
This is not my favorite picture, but it is my daughters' favorite of me celebrating one of their birthdays a long time ago.

62. Can you hula hoop?
OMG! Now they've gone and made hula hoop a verb.

63. Do you have a job?
Yes, because I can't make a living doing this.

64. What was the most recent thing you bought?
batteries (yes, really)

65. Have you ever crawled through a window?
Yes, and I've stepped through a looking-glass too.
Bong, bong, bong, bong, bong, bong, bong and bong. 

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Real Thing - repost from January 2008 and update

My husband gave me this book for Christmas. He is an enabler. This is like giving a drug addict a pharmacy reference manual.

I am a Coke addict. If there were a CCA (Coca Cola Anonymous) group, I'd be a lifetime member.

I've tried to quit numerous times, several times for as long as a year, and did it cold turkey during both my pregnancies. But then I'll get an urge for just one sip... and oh, how I love that first burn in the throat!

The one sip satisfies me for that day, but by the next day I'm thinking that one of those mini 8 oz cans wouldn't hurt. It's only 100 calories and it's not nearly as good as a bubbly Coke directly from the soda fountain from the convenience store, so I won't have a craving after I drink the 8 ounces, and I'll just cut back on bread today to balance the additional calories, and my how good that tastes even if it does come from a can.

By the end of two weeks, I am now drinking an 8 oz can with breakfast and a 20 oz cupful from the convenience store for an afternoon jolt. By the end of the month, the daily fix is two 20 oz drinks from the convenience store. Couple of months go by and now its a twice daily fix of 32 oz drinks. But I am proud of myself that I have never stooped to buying one of those 48 oz big guzzlers. OK, the real reason is I sip my Coke and it would taste flat by the time I finished one of those monstrosities. It's all about the carbonic acid, you know.

After approximately 9-12 months and fifteen additional pounds, the entire cycle starts reversing itself. It comes from me being too cheap to buy a whole new wardrobe. So you see, you can gauge where I am on the Coke cycle by the size of my butt.

I blame the addiction on my childhood when super cold 8 oz green bottles of Coke were dispensed in red freezer chest-like coolers. You inserted your money, then dragged the bottle through a metal maze to a large opening where you pulled out the bottle, dripping with condensation, popped the cap on the built-in opener, and took a swig on a hot summer day. There was nothing better than the burn of that first sip.

Change to Diet Coke, you say. My body doesn't tolerate aspartame or any other fake sugar. Besides, Coke prides itself on being The Real Thing. Diet Coke isn't real and I'm a realist by nature.

I have decided that I am allowed at least one vice in my otherwise perfect life and drinking Coke is it. Since I am not a coffee drinker, I reason it is no worse than someone having a latte and doughnut. Therefore as long as my body isn't suffering any ill effects and it hasn't so far, I'm sticking to the bubbly brown burn over ice.
I reposted the above because if I get a bit surly in the coming weeks, it's because I'm on the wagon. The butt gauge has told me it's time to wean off  the brown stuff, and I'm off to self-regulated rehab.

The good news is if I rid myself once and for all of this one vice of mine, I will be totally perfect.

Er... at least.without vices.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The joys of being an amblyope

In my latest meme I mentioned that I was an amblyope and many readers seem fascinated by the fact.  According to wikipedia, only 1-5% of the population has it.  I guess that makes me special.  Amblyopia has nothing to do with Opie Taylor walking down a country road in Mayberry.

My left eye sees things but it's just lazy, and you know when there's work to be done and something is lazy, something else comes in and takes over, i.e. the right eye.

As a child, if I covered my right eye, it seemed as though the images seen with the left eye would get darker and certainly blurry.  I was forced to wear an eye patch when reading or watching TV and it was so annoying it ruined the pleasure.  My family even had to take speech lessons to understand me.  After several years, the problem remained and the patch was thrown away.

It wasn't until I was in mid-life and became good friends with my optometrist, that I learned more about my condition and finally had an explanation about parts of my life.

Now I know why I could never hit a moving target, be it a baseball, tennis ball, badminton birdie - I have no depth perception.  I'm not sure what the excuse is for a stationary golf  ball, but after 2-3 hours of 30 strokes per hole and the ball still sitting on the tee, I gave up on that too.  At least I finally had an excuse for being the last pick in gym class.

So how does one survive without depth perception? It's easy; my brain has adapted.  I do have perspective, so I can tell objects are far away because they are smaller. I've never really known what 3-D looks like. As a result, that explains why I could do well at bowling and archery since I could focus on a distant stationary target.

I can also parallel park, but for me objects are actually farther than they appear to be so there is always plenty of room for maneuvering in the spots I choose. But when I'm a passenger and someone else is parking, I cringe, shut my eyes, and get ready for the inevitable crunch (which never happens) against another vehicle. The parking space always looks too darn small.

I remember a family vacation when I was young where we were all excited about going to see a 3-D movie.  I put on the special glasses and all I could see were red and blue double images that drove me crazy.  I saw the same thing without the glasses.

"Didn't you see that arm reach out of the movie screen and almost touch you?"

"Nope. And I'm getting a headache so get me out of here." Whiners always ruin the fun for others.

What is weird is that I think three dimensionally.  When looking at photographs or blue prints, I can visualize the space and understand the dimension and volume in my mind, more so than most people do. Perhaps it's because two dimensions is my reality.

The only real problem I have with amblyopia is being beaten up all the time.  My left side is always bruised and sore from door jambs and table corners jumping in front of me.

Many amblyopes have misaligned eyes and if I'm really tired and if you look really hard, you'll find my left eye just slightly turned toward my nose.  There is some entertainment value with this condition. If I feel like being goofy, I can get that left eye looking at the bridge of my nose while my right eye looks straight ahead.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Loving the wrong animals

A while back I wrote about the baby skunks my daughter had trapped at her stable/kennel.  Yes, they are stinkin' cute, but they are dangerous pests.

Some animal rights people don't like the idea of trapping wild animals, even in live traps.  Here's exactly why skunks (and also bats)  should be removed away from humans and pets. Five family members are taking rabies shots and their dog in quarantine for 6 months. I wrote about my experience with bats here.

Just recently there was a bit of an uproar in a neighboring community about rubber traps being set for coyotes that were roaming in a city park.  Someone didn't like the rubber traps because the coyote appeared to be in pain.  Apparently that person does not know that coyotes are predators and will feast on small animals including cats and dogs

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Meme of many questions, Part Two

Courtesy of Sunday Stealing:

23. Do you rent movies often?
Netflix has loved me for years.

24. Is there anything sparkly in the room you're in?
No. I'm not attracted to sparkly things so you can keep the diamonds. Now chocolate is a different matter.

25. How many countries have you visited?
5 but who's counting?

26. Have you made a prank phone call?
No. I have better things to do.

27. Ever been on a train?

No, but I have been in a train.  I'm afraid I wouldn't see the tunnel coming if I were on the train or I might have to wrestle some outlaw and risk dangling precariously over the edge.

28. Brown or white eggs?
I prefer blue robin eggs, but it takes so darn many to make a omelet.

29. Do you have a cell-phone?
No, and I don't have Internet access, TV, radio, car, refrigerator, stove, toilet, or any other modern device that would make my life easy. Life should be full of isolation and hardship.

30. Do you use Chap Stick?
My chaps stick without any assistance.

31. Do you own a gun?
Go ahead, make my day and you'll find out.

32. Can you use chop sticks?
Not very well, but I can play chop sticks on the piano

33. Who are you going to be with tonight?
A fat cat
34. Are you too forgiving?
Nope, and I never forget either.

35. Ever been in love?
Many, many, times, but I'll never fall in love again.

36. What is your best friend(s) doing tomorrow (or the next soonest week day)?
sipping a cold beer after a long hot day of work

37. Ever have cream puffs?
Not recently, but yes, and I make them myself.

38. Last time you cried?
When I spilled the milk this morning.

39. What was the last question you asked?

40. Favorite time of the year?

41. Do you have any tattoos?
My body is not an art gallery.

42. Are you sarcastic?
Hardly never.

43. Have you ever seen The Butterfly Effect?
Yes, and don't ask me to name all the other movies I've seen because I don't want to sit here all day.

44. Ever walked into a wall?
I'm an amblyope, so I not only walk into walls, I also bounce off them.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The old guys can still do it

Ides of March first recorded "Vehicle" in 1970 and they can still crank it out. Perhaps even better. Jim Peterik still has an amazing voice. I was fortunate enough to see them many times in person at various clubs back in the old days.  I'm a bit partial to the brass sounds put out by them and fellow group Chicago.

Monday, July 12, 2010

A new business development strategy

If your water park business is failing in this economy, just pray for a miracle.  The rain stops and business increases 200%, right after Jesus shows up in an unfurled flag.

Of course an expert needs to authenticate these things, so a Catholic priest, who of course had nothing better to do, visited the water park on Thursday to inspect the flag. (click on link for picture)

Unfortunately, the Vatican takes its time on all matters of importance, and it will take decades to get a confirmation from them that it truly is Flag Jesus. Just look how long it took them to verify child abuse within their own confines.

While I'm waiting for the results, I think I'll enjoy my breakfast... 

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Meme of Many Odd Questions

Courtesy of Sunday Stealing:

1. First thing you wash in the shower?
First I scrub the walls, then the faucets, then the floor, and finally the shower door.

2. What color is your favorite hoodie?
Since I'm a child of the 1950's, I'd have to say bronzed Latino.

3. Would you kiss the last person you kissed again?
As long as we're still married.

4. Do you plan outfits?
If you mean wardrobe, no.  If you mean enterprises, then yes, sometimes.

5. How are you feeling RIGHT now?
I'm feeling GRRRRRRREAT.

6. What's the closest thing to you that's red?
Not a dang thing. Even the Blogger icon is orange.

7. Tell me about the last dream you remember having?
I was being chased by some male bloggers up a mountain and the whole hilltop blew off.

8. Did you meet anybody new today?
No, and I didn't want to make any small talk today either.

9. What are you craving right now?
beef that's roasting in the oven and the aroma is wafting through the room

10. Do you floss?
Yes, but my dental bills don't support that claim.

11. What comes to mind when I say cabbage?
Der sauerkraut on der bratwurst

12. Are you emotional?
I have never been called a drama queen.

13. Have you ever counted to 1,000?
No. I run out of fingers and toes after I get to 21.  What kind of stupid question is that?

14. Do you bite into your ice cream or just lick it?
Licking anything is better than biting it.

15. Do you like your hair?
Yes, it's a nice distraction when I'm bored.

16. Do you like yourself?
Yes. I'm also my best and only friend.

17. Would you go out to eat with George W. Bush?
If he were buying and it was Texas barbecue.
18. What are you listening to right now?
The click, click, click of a keyboard
19. Are your parents strict?
They'd whip the tar outta me if they could, but I can outrun the walkers.
20. Would you go sky diving?
If I wanted to commit suicide.
21. Do you like cottage cheese?
small curd, fat free, and only twice a month

22. Have you ever met a celebrity?
I've shaken hands with Richard Nixon, but washed them with antibacterial soap immediately afterward.
I gave directions to Peter, Paul, and Mary back in the 1950's when they were so lost in my little town trying to get to a performance in a neighboring large city.
Sly of the Family Stone spent a night in our local jail, but unfortunately I didn't get to meet him.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Presenting with pleasure - a new safety device

If your mother told you doing it would make you go blind, now you can have a car with a vibrating seat that warns you if something is in your blind spot.

For those women who like to apply makeup while driving, you can also use the vibrating mascara , and be sure to set your cell phone on vibrate for maximum driving satisfaction.

But please keep your eyes on the road.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Laugh or Cheer (Depending on Your Political Views)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Filtering the news is propaganda

On July 1, 2010 the government issued an order barring the public and the news media from coming within 65 feet of clean-up operations of the gulf oil spill without permission from the Coast Guard.   Anyone not authorized by the Coast Guard “must not come within 65 feet of booming operations, boom, or oil spill response operations under penalty of law.” Those who “willfully” defy the White House order could be prosecuted as Class D felons and face up to five years in prison and a $40,000 fine.

Here's an excellent op-ed about first amendment rights.  He raises an interesting point as to why the media only cries foul on first amendment issues when it pertains to media, but not to other entitites.

Dog Days of Summer

Just because I'm a dog lover, especially Vizslas:

Monday, July 5, 2010

The long and short of it

We entertained a childhood friend of my husband this weekend who was here for a class reunion.  He looks a bit like this:

Well, he doesn't really look like he just arrived from 1945, but he is very tall.  My husband's friend is 6 ft 8 or 9.

If you've read my blog for any length of time, you know I'm short .  There are some adaptations one must make to deal with every day life when one is on the low end of the vertically challenged.  The same holds true for very tall people.

Never walk into a room with a very tall man if you want to be inconspicuous.  As we entered several restaurants this weekend,  heads turned, eyes gawked, and the whispers began.

"I'll bet he's a retired basketball player from the NBA."

And that was followed by constant staring while people tried to figure out who this giant really was.

I have another friend who is similar in size.  He became a very successful trial attorney, and used his height as an advantage in the courtroom.  His imposing presence oozed authority and decisiveness, and his physical stature alone could influence juries to sympathize with his client.

Both have back problems, both have trouble fitting into a car, and both always play footsie (not necessarily by choice) with the person across the table from them.

I also have two good female friends that are nearly 6 feet tall.

I am not sure why I like them all so much. They make me feel rather small and can be a pain in the neck.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy July 4th!

Go here to find some stimulating reading.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

32 years ago today

The Supreme Court on July 3, 1978 upheld an FCC ruling due to George Carlin's 7 dirty words skit.  Thus began regulations of speech regarding indecency, censorship, and specific time periods in which certain subject matter is disallowed.

Fortunately there is still free speech on the Internet any time of the day or night. (Warning, this video may be offensive to some people.  For the rest of you, it's still funny after all these years.)