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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

These Dreams

Considering there was nothing happening today, no aide, no HUD, no Shire workers, I decided it would be a nap day. I read for a while (Hitchens' last book, Arguably, is wonderful) and fell into a deep comfortable sleep for 3 hours.

The Beest enjoyed it, curling up in one place or another on or around me. And it felt really good to my body, as if I hadn't slept in weeks and was finally getting a great hunk of relaxation. But for the daymares. If I sleep during the day it's bad dreams time these last few years. Not horrific (I don't have those anymore, hallelujah) just bad. Like today's- first I couldn't find my car and then kept losing what belongings I had with me as I walked all over town in a snowstorm trying to find everything. It was pointless and annoying as a video game. The second dream was so rotten I woke myself up from it. I dreamt Bernie Sanders suddenly died and right after reading the blurb and telling Stevil (in my dream), I refused to be in any more of it and opened my eyes. There was the Beest, staring in my face.

Maybe I need to sleep during the day til this works out. There was one February- 1984? -when my friend Evan and I barely ever left our beds but to work. And we skived off that as much as possible, calling each other every couple of days to make sure we were alive and say we were still exhausted. I don't recall that marathon as being full of bad dreams. So this is my plan for February. Sleep like Sleeping Beauty. Sleep until I'm not tired anymore. Sleep until the daymares stop or my enthusiasm comes back, whichever happens first.

Yes, Winter has come. It may be bizarrely warm and nothing like a normal February Eve, but it has come. And I'm going to hibernate.

A Brand New Day

That was quite a fit of diet meltdown. I came pretty close to blowing it. But the blogdom cavalry came rushing out with cheers of, "You can do it!" thanks to Lawless, and guess what? I didn't blow it. Ketosis not wrecked, onward we go. Maybe the bitching was all I needed to get out of my system, maybe I just needed that push of support. Well, it worked. Thank you all. It's meat, eggs and 22 little grams of carbs a day and I'm dealing with it. What was a huge thing last night is not just not a big deal today, but another thing to point at and smile, cuz I made it through -with a little help from my friends.

It's Tuesday, and the last day of January already. That was a quick month. Seems like we just turned the year and here we head into February. I think the last we heard, Rory's surgery was scheduled for today. I hope he's okay and that someone will hear from him soon.

We got a slight dust of white last night, nice to brighten up the grey waterstone that our dooryards have become. The forecast is for warmth and rain the next days. I'm trying to spin it into being the January Thaw, though we haven't really had a winter to thaw out from.

It's election time in our burg:
http://www.ibrattleboro.com/article.php/20120130171656603

Florida's Repo Primary Day today
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/post/the-florida-republican-presidential-primary--in-one-chart/2012/01/30/gIQA2iGAdQ_blog.html

The UN calls for Syria's Pres to step down in wake of repression:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/31/un-resolution-syria-assad-step-down

Tell me how "green" nuke power is again?
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/power-failure-forces-nuclear-plant-shut-illinois-article-1.1014494

Can we apply Occam's Razor here?
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/team-investigate-underwater-ufo-sunken-ships-millennium-falcon-article-1.1013642

Jelly from the sky:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/jan/30/blue-marble-mystery-rains-dorset

American Dictionary done after 50 years:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/jan/31/dictionary-american-regional-english-dialect

Run and play. I'll be back later.

Monday, January 30, 2012

As Resolve Wanes

Tomorrow marks 4 weeks on the high protein highway. I've certainly lost weight. I do feel better. And I would kill, yes, kill, for a plate of lasagna or chinese food.

Instead of leaping off the meatwagon, I'm trying to figure out how to deal with it. I made a commitment and come hell or high water we're meeting Greg in April. That's the bottom line. If I don't carry through, I'll totally hate myself.

So it's time to take a minute and look at what's eating at me. First of all it's no help to have someone remark that they "can't believe" I don't "even have ketchup in the house". And to leave behind a pound of truffles - the same truffles I've been parrying with for a month and successfully ignored. Then there's the fact that everyone you see or talk to or email with brings up what good food they've just had, or are having, or will be having. And then there's the tv, where every 6 minutes is a food commercial.

These are all everyday things and normal (well, maybe not the truffles) but right now are really annoying issues. It's like any mention of food looms huge in my head. It doesn't help that I'm sick of meat, eggs, cheese and romaine. Even bacon. Who gets sick of bacon? Me. It doesn't help that it's the end of the month and there's little left in the fridge anyway. It doesn't help that it's winter and the bleakness is starting to set in. It doesn't help that I'm starting to feel very sorry for myself while everyone else eats whatever they want to get through the winter doldrums.

So I gotta set some limits. For now at least, I gotta stop anyone talking about food to me. If a food commercial comes on, mute it or change the channel. I have to work on my attitude. On Friday new meats, fish and cheeses and real coffee will be in the house. I only have to make it til then. Maybe I can't make it forever, but I can make it for 3 more days.

And it's 82 1/2 days to Greg. Gods help me.

Monday Monday

As Lawless noted, I wasn't online yesterday. There were good reasons. My back reached its zenith of uselessness, and I was hungover from red wine. There are few things that lay me as low as red wine. That and the bad decision that while feeling no pain from it, to carry on moving things.

Well. The place is ready for HUD. Or as ready as it will be. Meanwhile, life goes on.

After reading this, I'm more confused than ever about what independence in Scotland would mean:
http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/political-news/real-divide-is-haves-and-have-nots-says-miliband.1327896337

Occupy Oakland got some rare press coverage this weekend:
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/oakland-assesses-damages-occupy-movement-cops-clash-article-1.1013718

Censoring is okay by Thailand
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/30/thailand-backs-twitter-censorship-policy

Don't drink the water
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jan/30/cadmium-spill-china-river

OWS protesters arrested after "Occu-party" in Brooklyn
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/4-occupy-wall-street-protesters-charged-williamsburg-brooklyn-melee-article-1.1013926

Microaggression?
http://www.ibrattleboro.com/article.php/20120129153241513

2 arms are better than one
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16739682

The Beest is demanding breakfast. Off I go.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Pank Cup Boy

I just have to repost this on its own. Ty is a regular guy, a fast-food worker, who's never, in the years I've watched his YT vids, ever talked about politics and what's going on. This whole early morning- little sleep rant is something we should pay attention to.He makes many points so many are missing:

http://www.youtube.com/user/thamagickjumpoff?blend=1&ob=0#p/a/u/1/-VN-eijKQEI

Homo Erectus, not so Erect. Yet.

This is pissing me off. There's so much to do, I have the whole system figured out of what goes where and how to get it there and I can barely tolerate sitting up. Ya know that marionette feeling? Like your back is in pieces and the whole top of your body could just fall over? Yeah, that's it.

Meanwhile, Gal Friday was diagnosed with a concussion and I'm really glad I didn't let her do much yesterday. Just don't screw around with concussions. I've had them. Who knows what this means in getting an aide this coming week. And the doc she saw had no interest in why she fainted or has been having dizzy spells. They didn't even take blood to see if she's anaemic, pregnant or has low sugar or electrolytes. Typical US treatment. Our medical system sucks. It wasn't always like this.

I did look at the news yesterday, but it was one horrific thing on top of another (one story started me heaving) so I'm leaving the news alone for a couple days. Maybe tomorrow. Here are the usual sources, in case you want to check out what's up:

http://www.guardiannews.com/

http://www.nydailynews.com/

http://www.bbc.com/

http://bigthink.com/

http://www.nytimes.com/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

http://kos.dailykos.com/
 

Friday, January 27, 2012

I Shoulda Listened

Well, I dood it. Got halfway through shifting the boxes when my back said, "UP YOURS!" and went out. I'm not surprised. I won't be surprised if it forms a union and goes on strike for better working conditions either. United Vertebrae, local L2-4.

So this calls for short sitting periods and long laying-down periods.

My Gal Friday showed up bright and early and was in worse shape than me. So no, the bed's not moved, the closet's not shifted, and guess what? They'll just have to deal with it. There's nothing around the water heater and there's no "storage against the baseboard heaters". What do they freakin expect from us anyway, we're all disabled and/or old and we've only been back 10 weeks with the holidays in the middle of it. They can bite me. Really.

I could always leave the broom next to the door. Herman said that keeps people from coming in. I've never tried it but here's a good opportunity. They're going to places randomly; we don't know which homes or even what day next week they'll be in The Shire. Maybe I'll get to it, maybe not. Either way, I repeat, they can bite me.

Well, back to prone. pfft.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Can Anyone Explain?

There are several things I've been following that I can't make sense of and hope someone can explain. I'm either thick as a brick or missed some things that are key to following the story.

First, the Scottish Independence referendum. Neither The Scotsman nor the Herald has reported exactly what the referendum says, nor what Salmond said yesterday. So I sift through the Guardian website and finally find these, buried well below many other stories. And the take is that the question,
"Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?"
is a "loaded" and "biased" question. Eh? It's a yes or no. You agree or you don't. How is that loaded?

Then, in the same issue, I keep seeing "devo-max", and have no idea what that is. It's dropped here and there with implications but no explanation or context of what it is.

Next, the Davos convention. Why is Cameron talking about the Robin Hood Tax and lobbying for it to be squashed before it's even got teeth? Talk about contraception! It seems to me that from what I've seen about the Davos summaries, it's a big PR meeting for rich Capitalists to plan ways to get richer and stay rich. Is that the purpose?

So if anyone can explain what these are really about, please do so.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Look, Back in Anger

Oh is my back pissed off at me. I just hung two paintings and really thought I was faceplanting for a minute there. Totally pitched me. What the hell? I've treated it well, spared it from so much and this is what it does to me. Ungrateful little git.

Well no more Mrs. Nice Gal. Just for that, it's going right back to moving boxes tomorrow. See how it likes me then! And boohoo if it doesn't like it. A back has to learn to work just like the rest of us.

(and yes, this probably makes me look entirely nuts but I find it therapeutic)

In other news, it's Burns Night. And it's looking like Special K's birthday may not happen for the foreseeable future. I need to break this diet because the romaine and spinach have stopped working, if you catch my drift. Nothing drastic (I think sugar would do damage at this point) but I'm going to break out the haggis and eggs for dinner. What I don't eat of the haggis I'm sure Hildebeest will eat. For a few years I tried having a Burns Night Supper but nobody had interest. Which doesn't faze me; I'll do it, sans pipes, whisky, or company. Traditions must be kept, standards must be maintained, and the haggis will be eaten. Like roasting a turkey, or dyeing eggs, I'll do it once a year for tradition's sake.

I'll listen to this while cooking and eating
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b017l5y3

And this, if it takes me a while to get the haggis down:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b019p2gv/In_Search_of_Highland_Mary/
And tomorrow I'll go back to the carnivorous rampage.

P.S. My pal Annie Boline just stopped by, declining haggis but sharing a wee dram. I do adore me muckies.

Fun Awards Time Again



Moonraven at http://social-alchemy.blogspot.com/  gave me The Versatile Blogger. This is a fun award and thank you Moony, I see your blog is springing forward by leaps and bounds!

The Versatile Blogger award carries 2 conditions; you must pass it on to 3 other bloggers and reveal 7 obscure things about yourself. Well, here goes.

The three bloggers I pass the torch to are:
*drumroll*
The Twisted Scottish Bastard
http://twistedscottishbastard.blogspot.com/

The Sarcastic Test Guy
http://sarcastictestguy.blogspot.com/

And bazza at
http://todiscoverice.blogspot.com/

These are fun, entertaining and yes, versatile blogs! Check them out.

Onto the obscurities.
1. I have Morton's toes. This is where your second toe is longer than your big toe.

2. I can read upside down and backwards. This was handy on NYC subways.

3. I've lived with 13 dogs (including Ems the Wonder Dog for 2 months) and 11 cats (including the Pastel Kitty for 2 months) over my lifetime. And I still prefer them to people.

4. I've never read a romance novel and never will.

5. My pierced ears now reject all earrings, even 24k gold, so I no longer wear them.

6. I don't understand what boredom is or how people get it.

7. I attended seances from the time I was 6 until I was 17, when I was thrown out for laughing.

Boy, the more you do these, the harder it gets to find obscure things about yourself. Okay, TSB, STG and bazza, take it away...

One from Column A, Two from Column B...

Here's a good sign:
http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/political-news/cairn-energy-withdraws-25m-bonus-to-gammell.1327460819

Obama delivered the SOTU speech:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/25/state-of-the-union-obama-fairer

Apple's doing well, anyway:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/jan/24/apple-reports-record-revenues

Pirates' hostages are rescued:
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/u-s-military-raid-somalia-frees-american-dane-held-hostage-article-1.1011524

James Farrentino is gone (he was a nice guy, I met him a few times):
 http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/actor-brooklyn-native-james-farentino-dead-73-article-1.1011506

Egypt is marking the 1st Anniversary of their first uprising:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-16711302

And this was in my inbox this morning:
"...But as I listened to President Obama, I looked at obstructionist leaders in Congress and I couldn't help but get angry.
It is past time to throw aside partisan differences, put America first and embrace the American values of equal opportunity and fairness for all.
In communities across the country, the NAACP has marched, rallied, and raised our voices to let our leaders know job creation can't wait. President Obama has heard our call, and tonight he laid out his ambitious blueprint for continuing to improve the economy and put people back to work.
Unfortunately, too many members of Congress are committed to nothing but blocking the president's work. They are more concerned with scoring political points than getting us out of the worst economic slump since the early 20th century.
Every day, NAACP leaders nationwide speak with people who are working harder than ever before, and still struggling to make ends meet. Just this week our North Carolina NAACP leadership conducted a tour throughout the state to chronicle the effects of joblessness, underemployment, and poverty.
We know many of you have similar stories, and we want to hear them. Will you share with us your story on how the economic crisis has affected you and those you love?
http://action.naacp.org/job-crisis-stories

It is time for cooperation to trump personal political agendas.
And until it does, we must continue to speak out, stand up, and be heard.
Please share your stories and experiences on the economic crisis, and how it has affected you and your loved ones: Thank you. I look forward to hearing what you have to say.
Sincerely,
Ben
Benjamin Todd Jealous
President and CEO
NAACP"

It's gonna be a busy day, once the coffee hits and I get off my butt. Much to do, before the HUD inspectors get here. I'll try to get back here later.
Enjoy your day.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

A Foggy Day

The Shire is fogged in this morning, which is kind of cozy. I'm moving slowly. By some miracle, the VNA managed to send me an aide who is a ball of energy and in a half hour has started the laundry, cleaned the bathroom and is out running errands already. After she's done I'll see what the rest of the day brings.

Interesting developments in the Leveson inquiry:
http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/bbc-paid-out-310000-to-private-investigators.16562580

How come Romney only pays 14% while I paid 22% my whole working life?
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/mitt-romney-releases-tax-records-gop-presidential-candidate-paid-3m-14-2010-article-1.1010823

Video of the solar storms going on
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/video/2012/jan/24/solar-storm-video

Oscar nominees announced, if anyone cares:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2012/jan/24/oscars-nominations-2012-live

This is a surprise? To whom?
http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2012/jan/22/fruit-vegetable-consumption-poorer-families

The SCOTUS did something right!
 http://bigthink.com/ideas/42104

This is- well, just read it and shake your head
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/wisconsin-man-ghost-beat-wife-article-1.1009972

Monday, January 23, 2012

Bits and Bobs

I've collected some things over the last few days that defy category. So here they are, in no order whatsoever.

Aurora comes in view
 
Do-gooders do well
 
How to respond to your Senator
 
shit NYers say
 
shit hipsters say
 
shit vegans say
 
shit yogis say

It's pouring outside. The snow looks very sad. When this is over it'll all be turned to waterstone that we won't be rid of til May. Wah.

It Ain't Happening Today

Big plans for today are very undoable. It's oh so wet, like the winter days I remember in the schoolyard when it seemed like the snow was putting out steam. That icy-melting smell is in the air. And it's disabling the functional mode. There's always tomorrow.

So I'll do the little things I can do. Like a makeup test run with what I have. It's honestly been so long since I wore any that I don't even remember. I've no idea if the mascaras I have (which have never been used) smudge or run, if the foundations are still useable, or what pencils and shadows I own. Today is a good day to sort that out.

And then I'll examine my shoes and bags. I'm sure things need polishing. All sitdown work, and useful things that need doing so I can plan spending.

A neighbor was taken away in an ambulance earlier. I know her daughter; I hope she's okay.

Everyone I know who's still working is having workplace issues. Sometimes I think there's something to astrology, as Rob Breszny predicted this a couple of weeks ago. Nah, more likely a clever assumption considering the times we're in.

It's gonna be a low-key day. Those are good, too.

90 Days to Greg

Still working out details. Strider's getting us a hotel room nearby the concert so we don't have to travel after the excitement; I'm getting us VIP passes for after the show. I'm still fretting over what to wear. What shoes? New shoes? Sandals? Will it still be nasty and cold? If so, is the dress too thin? Is my little black jacket enough? What jewelry? And what to do with my hair? And what bag to carry? Should I get a pro manicure? If I end up in sandals I'll have to get a pedicure too. Should I bring him something? What? This is the series of bibble running through my mind every spare minute. Right down to what indelible pen to buy and who's gonna tattoo me. The tat guy I knew in town is nowhere to be found.

Also, I think this is what's really holding me to the diet. I flat out refuse to be on a walker when I meet him. A cane is bad enough, though it's a snazzy cane. I don't care if I'm in hellapain, I'm going to look marvelous. And we all know that it's more important to look good than to feel good.

So 3 weeks into the diet, I'm wearing a size 6 1/2 ring that I haven't been able to wear since before the opiates came along. It's a damn boring diet, and no birthday dinner so no break yet either, but it's working. I haven't lost energy and in fact I'm feeling stronger. In the morning I'm going to move the bed and shift the boxes in the bedroom closet. A production, but necessary, and it'll give me a good workout. HUD is coming next week; the heat thingies have to be clear, the pull-string alarms have to hang free to the ground, the water heater has to have clearance around it. I won't have a gal friday til Friday this week; the VNA is nuts, as always. And aides don't move furniture, or lamps, or well, anything. Tuesday will be a sitting day anyway, it's supposed to start raining tomorrow. Oh, joy..

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Here We Go Again

Once again, I was in the middle of returning emails when Comcast went down. This time my modem's fine. But I can't get into my email for 2 hours now, and the message is "This webpage is busy". Whatever the hell that means or is supposed to be the cover for what the problem is, we'll never know.

At least I can still get here, for now. I'm going to try to get onto other sites. Honest to god, Comcast. Get your shit together. And don't tell me to email you again. I just said I can't get into my email.

What a way to run a business.

Has Anybody Heard from Rory?

He should be getting ready for surgery if I recall rightly. I haven't heard from him since...November?

If you have- or haven't- please leave a comment. I'm concerned at his long silence.

The Slumber of the Beest

For the last couple of weeks all the Beest wants to do is eat and sleep. She sleeps on the desk leaf (and falls off). She sleeps on the couch. And if I'm making noise or moving things she goes into the bedroom (now with blackout-thermo drapes) and sleeps in my bed. She'll sleep after dinner and will wake up to follow me to bed, where she goes back to sleep.

Must be the midwinter. It's been on and off cold the last week, and rarely sunny. And her middle name is Bear, after all. She's in semi-hibernation.

Hasn't affected her appetite any. Though I fear I'm spoiling her to hell. She gets bits of my meat and cheese as well as her foods. And milk. She won't eat greens though. Catnip, yes. She'll hunker right down into catnip, then go eat, then pass out. Just like a stoner. She slept right through my combing her today after she hit the catnip. It's a phenomenon.

And it's also an instant wake up when she hears any of the following:
running water
a can opening
the fridge door
so I figure she's just acting like she's asleep most of the time. In a stoner daze, as if she's lying in an opium den, where I'm her watcher. I do look over to see if she's still breathing when she isn't snoring. She has me trained well.

Sunday Not-so-Funnies

The Four Horsemen of the Republicans on Gingrich's win:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2012/jan/22/newt-gingrich-south-carolina-video

This is the NY Times I loved, back in the saddle:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/opinion/sunday/south-carolinas-divisive-message.html?_r=1

The World Economic Forum takes place this week in Switzerland, where the elite meet to cheat:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/jan/22/davos-world-economic-forum-guide

Mitt pays 22% less taxes than his dad did, thanks to the Cayman Islands and the 2003 Congress:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/20/opinion/krugman-taxes-at-the-top.html?src=ISMR_AP_LO_MST_FB

The 99ers, uncounted in unemployment stats:
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/long-unemployed-99ers-star-documentary-series-crown-heights-filmmaker-immy-humes-article-1.1009303

Soylent Pink is here:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2012/jan/21/artificial-chicken-food-prize

The Pirate party says more than Arrrrr: "We're at a point where this old corporate industry thinks that, in order to survive, it has to dismantle freedom of speech."
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jan/22/rick-falkvinge-swedish-radical-web-freedoms

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Wayne Goes Kindle

My old friend Wayne has put his book, A Life Gone Awry, up on Kindle. This book is about the time he spent at the notorious Elan School in Poland Springs, Maine. The money made from the sales of this book will go to "organizations that fight abuse of children in residential treatment programs, and to the Jani Foundation, to help parents of mentally ill kids who are struggling."

Here's an opportunity to read a harrowing account of life in a correctional school and to help kids and families in crisis at the same time. It's only $2.99. It's worth much, much more.

 http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007055KA8/ref=tsm_1_fb_lk

Saturday Well Spent

Since the weather was delightful, all scheduled things were rescheduled. No birthday, no Comcast guy (it's been behaving since Friday anyway). Which left me free to tackle things I'd been meaning to. Like the storage room mess.

Going through 3 moves in 6 months makes organization in the moment impossible and there's just no way to be on top of things. When you get the chance, you have to start from squat and go into box by box sorting. I got through 6 boxes this afternoon, emptying 3, throwing stuff away and pulling out things to be used. The rest of the dresser set for LilaPie, the cobalt vase for the bathroom... and I got to see what's where. Where the framed pix for the living room are, where my Charlie Brown collection is, etc. Still haven't come across my tabletop drums, missing kitchen things, Keith Emerson's autobio, etc. But I did find the wind chimes and hung them on the front porch. They were my Mom's- lovely deep tones. I'm only a sixth of the way in to all there is to open and examine, but it's a start.

And hey, it's almost 5 p.m. and not dark yet!

Today's news, should you choose to know:

Wait, didn't we just occupy the place for like 8 years?
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/20/body-iraq-hostage-alan-mcmenemy

The Bastards can multiply:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/jan/20/undercover-police-children-activists

This may be the "Most Bleeding Obvious" article title:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/21/egypt-election-clear-islamist-victory

He can carry a tune!
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/president-obama-york-city-hold-trio-fundraisers-2012-re-election-bid-article-1.1008607

They have to be told this?!
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/police-commissioner-raymond-kelly-tells-cops-shrug-crime-victims-article-1.1009562

SC primaries up today:
http://news.yahoo.com/primary-day-hand-sc-voters-175958423.html

Damn zombies
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/01/21/1056815/-This-week-in-the-War-on-Voting:-The-invasion-of-the-zombie voters?via=blog_1
(you'll have to copy & paste that one)

I can't pick just one
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

Setlle in, grab a hot cuppa, have a lovely Winter evening.

Il Neige!

I asked for it, I got it. It's snowing like a normal New England Winter. Yay!

However, this may wreck my plans to finally celebrate Special K's birthday, which was 3 weeks ago already. Didja ever have a present to give that's so cool you're itching to give it to the giftee? Something you know they'll so dig, something that'll blow their minds, as we old farts used to say. Well I've been waiting, and now we may have to postpone for a weather call.

The Beest is mesmerized, perched on the desk leaf, staring out the window. Not even her tail is moving. I wonder what's running around in her little brain. Nobody's out in this. This is the kind of day I'd go walking, before the plowing and shoveling, when all's quiet in the hush falling snow creates.

The first Winter I lived here, 95-96, was a snowy one. And I had a Mercury Capri, which is all but useless in a snowy place. So I walked a lot. Every night after work I'd walk down Flat St. toward home. Flat St. then had few and daytime-only businesses. By the time I closed my area and got out it was late, and reasonable people were home and snuggled in. The silence of that street, walking down the middle of the road, snow falling steadily, was a welcome decompression after the craziness of food service before a storm.

It was the same growing up, when after dinner I'd take the dogs out and it was snowing. Winter is nature's meditation class.

We'll see how this pans out.     

Friday, January 20, 2012

Etta James is Dead

Etta James died today, just short of her 74th birthday. Her troubled life, great talent and hit records are now part of R & B history. She'd cancelled her 2010 tour and grew increasingly ill as the leukemia, hepatitis C and dementia she was struggling with overcame her.

We'll always have her music.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfNLspDL3ns

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0uCsFOhNCE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YApNirMC9gM

Rest in peace now, Etta. We'll miss you.

Brunch with Bernie

Bernie Sanders is my Senator and a great man.
On Fridays he does the Thom Hartmann Show at lunchtime:
http://www.thomhartmann.com/radio/listen-live

Here is an article on his position about Corporatocracy:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2012/jan/20/us-constitution-and-civil-liberties-us-supreme-court

It's a zoomy day, gotta run, be back later!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Unsolicited nor Paid for Recommendations

Huurah I'm online- for the moment anyway.
Two things I came across in my life lately that actually work. One I got for Christmas, Sugar Dipped Vanilla Body Cream by Carol's Daughter. Fabulous stuff. Since the heat's been on I'm drying out like filo on the counter. This goes on a little too creamy for my liking but it sinks right in and gives you soft healthy skin. Costs a bit. Totally worth it.

The second is the Zenith Tibet Almond Stick. After 3 moves this year my poor furniture, which is mostly wood, was scratched to hell. So the local hardware store recommended this strange little hundred-something year old product in a tin that was like, 2 bucks. A bizarre tube of cotton that makes scratches and scrapes disappear. What's to lose? It's magic. From some company in Addison, Ill. The whole of Sr. Clarissa's drawfronts are beautiful. I'm starting on the rest this weekend.

Okay, running away before they shut me down again.

Warning, Warning Will Robinson!

My intertube service is on and off all day today. I keep watching the modem lights like they're life support. I called 3 times, learned a bit about working on the modem, but it won't stay fixed. The Comcast service guy will be here Saturday evening 5-6 so if I'm not posting it's not for any reason except I can't get online.

You're Insane, Loki, and Out of Your Senses.

Nothing like a day out of the world's nuttiness to make it look even more nutty when you look again. I've found myself going, "nn-mm." and shaking my head several times today. It's hard to tell The Guardian stories from The Onion's these days; that's how crazyass the world is.

Nearly every single person I know these days is at least a bit off, and some are downright bugaboo. Some singularly insane and/or rotten people are making others batty.

Then there's my own nuttiness in dealing with this diet. I'm bored to the bone with this already, it's unbelievably expensive and there's another 3 months to go. The results are fabulous and I've no intention of stopping; it's just the hamster wheel in my head telling me that instead of eating what bores me (conspiring with my Scottish $ tightness), I won't eat at all. And that's stupid AND nutty. I never thought I'd get sick of bacon and eggs. I am. Well I'll just carry on. It'll pass. But negotiating with that hamster wheel going round and round pisses me off.

And the freaking weather isn't helpful. One day it's zero, the next it's 40-something and rainy, the next it's windy and Walt Disney cold, then it's sunny and now we're expected to have 3 days of snow. How are these old joints with no cartilege supposed to keep up with that, I ask you?

So I can see every perfectly good reason behind every mother's child being toe-picking crazy. It's actually no wonder why the whole world is mad.

Bah. I need to go put myself to some good works.

Restart, Refresh, Reset

Weirdo glitches with Comcast this morning. Spoke to two nice CSRs, one of whom explained to me how to check things and reset my modem myself. Hopefully I'll be able to fix things without going through the whole schmagiggle every time now. Of course, I lost the post I was working on, and now I have other things to do, so I'll be back with the rest of the news and other criminal acts later.

Meanwhile, Rick Perry pulls out and recs Gingrich:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/19/south-carolina-primary-iowa-results-live

Spies just aren't smooth as Bond anymore:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/19/fake-rock-plot-spy-russians

Don't take my Kodachrome away:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/jan/19/kodak-files-for-bankruptcy

A Day Without Blogging is Like a Day Without Blogging

Checked around just after midnight. What a bizarre thing to see Wiki'd taken their site down. Then I had to see what others were doing. Reddit was still up. iBrattleboro, up. Youtube, up. Google blacked out their logo. Ladies of the Lake put up a black page with links to find out about Sopa and to contact your Congresspeople. Then I got offline.

It was a good day offline, I may do it more often. I took the rest of the holiday hoohah down and made overdue phone calls. It's Day 17 of meat and greens. A few "This sucks!" moments lately but nothing that's thrown me. I'm making my own mayo and Caesar dressing so I know there's no hidden anything and they're all protein and fat and no filler or carbos. It's nice to wear my old rings again. My clothes are at that really comfortable stage (where everything is loose but just starting to look homey, a ridiculous look). Had a hard time swallowing romaine tonight, damn near choked. I think I'm dehydrated. Must remember to take vites. Am entirely sick of water and black coffee and teas. And need new animals. Yummy ones.
Like this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4k-l1HLj9Nk

We're celebrating K's birthday Saturday and it's a planned diet break. It'll be three or four days to get ketosis back afterward, but I'll get right back on the horse. 94 days to Greg. I'll lose one day but every day counts.

Meanwhile the world kept spinning.
Sign of the times
There's faith

There's hope
 
There's charity
 
He pays less tax than I ever have
 
I dreaded this would happen
 
Cuomo getting more like Christie every day
 
reasoned morality
 
I'll get up to speed on the current and catch up with everyones' blogs when I wake up later. It's cold and windy and bed calls my name. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sopa, Pipa and the Wednesday Blackout

I'm sure y'all know about Sopa and Pipa. I'm sad to say that one of Vermont's Senators, Pat Leahy, was behind these from the beginning.

President Obama has already said he won't sign it. It has too broad powers for him. I'm relieved to hear that. It's too close to censorship to me also, and in support of the Wednesday Blackout, I won't be posting. There won't be Wiki or Reddit to source tomorrow; so anything you want from them, do it tonight or wait til Thursday.

In solidarity, and see you Thursday,
Laura

Hot Off the Presses and Other Good Reads

There's a hale crop of winter books this year. Not all will make it to a library near you, because of the recent cuts. Around here we have an "interlibrary loan" system, where you fill out a form and your local library borrows it from another library who has a copy. I don't know how big this system is, but check to see if yours is part of one.

The Jefferson Bible has been printed at last:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/17/thomas-jefferson-revolutionary-bible-reissued

Jodi Kantor's sensationalist book about the Obamas is likely only the first in a string of election year stinkbombs
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/07/obama-rahm-emanuel-barack?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487

Was the Arab Spring uprising foreshadowed in fiction? The International Prize for Arabic Fiction seems to show it was;
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/jan/12/arab-spring-foreshadowed-fiction

Here's the latest NY Times bestseller fiction list. There's always something of interest in there:
http://www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/combined-print-and-e-book-fiction/list.html

And I have to mention The Game of Thrones series, which has captured my attention and imagination for months now. GRR Martin has produced a series that truly blows my mind. There aren't any thoroughly good nor thoroughly evil people, just like real life, but there are entirely evil forces and impending doom on the horizon. I can't wait to see how this turns out. The books are so dense that you can't rip through them, which makes now a good time to start, as he's in the finishing stage of work in the sixth of the seven planned books.
http://georgerrmartin.com/

The boxset of the first 4 novels is a bargain:
http://www.amazon.com/George-Martins-Thrones-4-Book-Boxed/dp/0345529057/ref=pd_sim_b_21
with A Dance with Dragons available separately and the soon-to-be published Winds of Winter probably being released later this year.

This is my favorite thing about winter; long reads. I also recommend anything Margaret George writes. She takes history and fills in trivial fact and imagination to make a tiramisu for the mind. Her Autobiography of Henry VIII is a particularly wonderful romp. And there's always Dickens. I find different subtexts to Dickens every time I reread his books.

And of course this is the perfect time for reading all those classics you've never gotten around to reading. I'd planned to tackle Proust's RTP this winter; that'll have to wait for next year, there's not time now and I'm not going to read half as I always have.

So check out a book or two this winter. Remember your library needs your support and patronage. If we don't use it, we'll lose it.

Synchronicity

Today's Quotation is:
" Death is a dignitary who when he comes announced is to be received with formal manifestations of respect, even by those most familiar with him."
Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914

Perhaps it's living in a relatively small town where nobody is more than 2 degrees of separation away, but there have been a number of deaths lately. All since the holidays began.

Nobody's new to death anymore at our age. I'm pretty used to it. But the recent deaths have all been of good, gentle people. It's as if little lights have gone out all over town, dimming all those left, too...

Yes, we must meet death with formal manifestations of respect. It helps those surviving and reassures in a peculiar way. We need the traditions. The casseroles, the mourning clothes, the sympathy cards. They count. They hold us together and keep us going on.

The coincidence of today's quote and the biggest thing on my mind is somehow comforting, too, though I'm sure there's some kind of spyware/Satanic marketing behind it. ;)

Well. May we all rest in peace tonight.

Monday, January 16, 2012

What Now?

Tried to comment on thefeatherednest, cuz Lawless isn't well and I wanted to send her love and goodness wishes. Blogger won't let me. Then tried to comment on WayneingMoments, who's an old pal having better times at last; thought I did, but now can't view his blog to see that it made it.

What oh what is going on now? So annoying. I went to Help and Issues (where nothing applies) and finally left a comment there that there's a ghost in the machine.

"It just goes to show ya, it's always something." Thanks, Gilda, it certainly is.

Get well soon, Lawless! And hooray for you, Wayne!

Pinball Wizard

Life is a lot like a pinball machine. Sometimes you hit the flippers just right and everything's lit up and exciting, and sometimes the ball just won't go the way you want it and everything goes down the shoot.

2012, so far, has really sucked for a lot of people in my life. Deaths, cancer, tragedy, hurtful disappointment... all have made the rounds already and it's only mid-January. This year is suspicious.

It'd be really nice if we had more control over the game but we don't. There are too many variables, too many bumpers that ricochet the ball in unexpected ways. Not enough flippers in the spots that would keep the ball in the game. Sometimes you can't keep the focus and things run away from you. And sometimes you just get lucky out of the blue, doing nothing.

I wish I was a pinball wizard and had all the tricks down so I could advise others. But I never was good at that game, and learned to laugh at how I continuously missed. Maybe that's as good as it gets.
 

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Food Glorious Food

While I'm basking in meat and greens, the rest of the world keeps eating what they eat.  There's been a lot of foodie news lately, and old chef habits die hard, so here for your gustitory information is food in the news:

Virgin? Maybe not. Maybe not even olive
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/jan/13/extra-virginity-tom-mueller-review

Things the industrial producers don't want you to think about
http://www.cracked.com/article_19433_the-6-most-horrifying-lies-food-industry-feeding-you.html

The diet industry is as rotten as any other industry
http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2012/jan/15/women-protest-diet-industry-parliament

HuffPo's weekly food stories:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/13/great-food-stories_n_1205165.html?ref=food

The produce pesticide roundup
http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/

Things regular consumers don't read
http://www.fmi.org/

I won't editorialize here. The stories and facts stand on their own. Just know that governments don't have your back when it comes to food. Like any other industry, the food producers have their lawyers and lobbyists shaping policy to keep them rich.

Glad That's Overwith!

Oh so much better today. And I didn't even break the diet. Mostly because the idea of eating anything put me off. Sleep is a magic cure. Should've known something was coming when I couldn't sleep. It's stupifying that I know all these signs of things and still don't recognize them when they're happening, only after the result lands. Then it's "Oh, of course!" How old do you have to be before that catches up? Does it ever? Is it some kinda body defense, like not recalling terrible pain?

It's 98 days to Greg's concert! And halfway through January! Wasn't it just Christmas about a week ago?

I've been neglecting the news, so here are some choice cuts:

But we're not, Blanche, we're not
http://www.lifeslittlemysteries.com/2066-humans-intelligent.html

I guess they can go around saying they poop gold after this. But I bet it still stinks:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2012/jan/14/golden-globes-america-food-poverty

Tell me a story!
http://bigthink.com/ideas/41943

This is just awful:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/15/italian-cruise-ship-survivor-found

The Pope ousts Occupiers
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/15/occupy-vatican-protesters-evicted-police

Blackout Wednesday is gathering steam
http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2012/01/13/wikipedia-mulls-sopa-blackout-as-other-sites-join-in/

Stephen Colbert's not running, but an ad is that's causing an uproar:
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/funnyman-stephen-colbert-mock-presidential-run-wackier-defends-attack-ad-article-1.1006407

Feed your head:
http://www.lifeslittlemysteries.com/2039-6-fun-ways-sharpen-memory.html
Okay, I'm going back to bed.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

ech, plech, atchoo!

It's a cold. After sneezing my head off, blowing the schnozz, and having a head too full to rest for long, a lost voice, a clogged ear and general poopy tiredness I've realized it's a cold. This is rotten timing; I have things to do. Today I can fall apart, try to sleep and take Nyquil. I'll even break the diet and have chicken soup but that's it. It's annoying when you're just sick enough to be unfunctioning but not so bad that you just pass out. And man, ear things really bug the hell outta me. So I'm giving this 24 hours to do its business and get gone. There's just no time for it. bah.

I Remember Henry

Neither his birthday nor his deathday. I've been emailing with Wendy, which always brings back Henry. I just remember what a good guy Henry Tewksbury was to me, and how by his sheer understanding everything was all right. He didn't always agree with me, he didn't like who I chose to be around and he always let me know in plain talk what he thought. And I never held anything back from him. It could get starish. Soon we'd start smiling. At heart we really, really just liked each other. He was the Best Boss I ever had.

There have been a hundred times I wish we could've had a banter over what's gone on since you joined the choir eternal, Henry. We had one of those rare communications where not a lot had to be said, we just looked at each other and knew. You're one of the ones I hope I get to see again, and ask if your Stairway to Heaven really was made of my brownies. :)

Getting to Know

It seems to me that my generation, and the gens I knew before, weren't raised to know ourselves at all.Whoever we happened to be didn't matter. Fall into the big part of the bell curve and go along. Duck and cover. That's way different now. That's a good change. The younger generations are more honest and they'e more honest because it's safer to be so. Remember being spanked for not doing what everyone else did? I do. In school, and worse when they found out at home.

We are very different from the youngers. We saw things they never knew in their entire existence. Young women are so far removed from what it was to be a woman then that they don't know to respect the change. And we just want to make believe that we won.

Today's seriously adult folk were born in the 70s. The 70s. A hundred too long agos and just yesterday. But they don't have to know how that is yet.

Here's a typical but true story song from my generation; we bought a lot of crap in being raised but it was all different then, and overnight it seemed we had this new reality that doesn't remember what happened yesterday. The world keeps changing faster and faster.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQXtTvl-N-c

Randomness for A Winter Day and Good Friends

To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A little Jackson Browne
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGz8L4of3po

Cheesecake for the ears (mine, anyway)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcAYoMBDgIs

Maybe the one single song I love most; we've been thru a lot together (play it loud):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dU0yg2ep1Tc

One way or another, 'it' always ends up like this, no matter what the 'it' is (though Jonesy is no Sandy)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkLM7qd8q5g

And because I'm a nerd, this would be perfection if Jimmy, Jonesy and Bonzo were here. She's even better than Sandy. (and really Percy. Cymbals? No. Bodhran all through.)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xjofsqj8OEM

This is a month after I last saw them
I've said this before and I'll say it til I die. We had the best of youthtime to be alive in, in generations. Maybe the Flapper Gen was that rebellious but they weren't about a cause. We had similarities. There was war. But there was thought. There was freedom. There was incredible music. There was risk and responsibility. And tons of consequences.

For my generation going to a Zep concert was like going to a religious rite. The smoke was so thick you barely saw the gods from afar... the people danced and sang with abandon...there was joy and hope in the temple of Led Zeppelin. I miss those rites
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okafT6Ok92Y

It's all so fleeting:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8VUolqWr8U

Let your mind wander today. Remember funny good things. Look at the person you're with and remember something that makes you laugh from the inside. We tend to not savor the cherished stuff and these days let the very real dark smegma cover us. It hasn't always been this way and it won't always be, either. All things must pass.

R.I,P. Sue Press

Mitt Romney, You ....

I posted half of this the other day and got peesy email complaints for rhyming Mitt. But more has come to light so in the retitling to not offend I'm adding the unbelieveable more truth.

Every time I hear anything said by the current conga line of fools running for the Repo nomination I think of my grandmother, Nana. She was called "The Republican Battleaxe" by Brooklyn's papers in her day. She would've grabbed every one of them and bashed their heads together just like she did with hooligans when she was NYC's first woman Police Captain. My Republican family would be ranting. There would be a Family Conference around Nana's big dining table and they'd discuss what to do. I'm fairly certain they'd change parties as a unit. Because these vertebrates are nothing like the Republicans they were. Today's Democrats are closer, but not as socially caring as my relatives were. And these Repos are just psychopaths with marketing consultants.

Take Mitt Romney. Please.

Mitt has a long professional politician history, after growing up rich. While Massachusetts Governor, he was quite lefty, to garner votes. Then he changed and changed and changed again, to suit the mood:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/mitt-romney-flip-flopper-or-not/2011/11/30/gIQAH6ubEO_blog.html

Even Conservatives don't like him:
http://notmittromney.com/

When he drove 12 hours to Canada with his dog tied to the roof of his car Mitt claims the dog liked it:
http://www.inquisitr.com/176518/mitt-romney-admits-he-tied-family-dog-to-the-roof-of-his-car-video/

Here's an interesting summary of ol' Mitt:
http://www.who-sucks.com/politics/12-reasons-why-mitt-romney-sucks

He sucked in 2007:
http://www.americablog.com/2007/08/good-god-mitt-romney-sucks.html

He sucks now:
http://www.americablog.com/2011/12/romney-adopts-kkk-slogan-keep-america.html

Mitt got 3 Pinnochios:
http://www.mediaite.com/online/washington-post-fact-checker-upgrades-mitt-romney-jobs-claim-to-3-pinocchios/

And I was told the media was all "leftwing elite". Imagine my surprise:
http://www.mediaite.com/tv/abc-news-debate-ignores-mitt-romneys-admission-that-his-bain-jobs-claim-is-bunk/

More Mittbain:
http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-romney-defends-bain-record-20120112,0,5132594.story
If this is The Best the Repos can do I almost feel sorry for them. I should probably call Greenwood Cemetery and make sure the family're still at rest and haven't spun right up out of their graves.

And don't worry. I'm marinating Obama for his turn on the spit. These days it's about who makes you rage least or who doesn't make you puke.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Hey Supernatural Writers!

One of the things that keeps me humble is my unabashed fanhood for Supernatural. Part of this has to do with my upbringing but admittedly it's because of the 2 lead actors. Which probably sounds disgusting coming from someone my age but Hell. I claim common sense but not class. I'm the woman who burped at Governor Douglas.

Supernatural is a fun series. It has many good points- two brothers fight together as "Hunters" who take out paranormal bad things, two handsome and tragic but brave and committed brothers, a cast of characters and bizarre stories, and a devoted fan base. But it has a tragic flaw- 7th season. They just killed a beloved main character after having "maybe" killed off another. The writers need to get their shit together. This could totally die by the end of the next season. This is Scarlet Fever season. The heat is on. The patient needs to get better or will die. They're introducing new characters. Okay. They've gone a little X-Files lately. If they start including aliens I'm gone, Jensen Ackles or no.

So maybe the writers are burnt and need ideas. The fans can help. The fans are all writers. I'd like to see story line that brings them back in time- fill out the years and their characters. With a twist. They're thrown into a replay of being back somewhere, they see each other as they are now but everyone else perceives them at that age; they know they're being screwed with, and that what's happening isn't what they recall but they seem to recall things very differently. They don't know who dunnit or how to get out and now Bobby's dead. But the dead talk in dreams. I'll leave it to you to say who did it to them, how Bobby helps and the ramifications of time traveling, etc. Okay? Free of charge, as a fan who doesn't want to see this series fade out.

Now, get to work.

Christ Almighty, Comcast!

Why are there always issues with Comcast? Why? Today, I can't get into my email and the message is "This service is temporarily unavailable. Wer're sorry for the inconvenience." Really, how sorry are ya? Sorry enough to work these damn issues out so they don't happen every few days? Seriously, every few days it's something else.

And for this I get to pay 115 bucks a month. If I'd ever done a job the way these people do, I'd've been fired. Difference is, they're a monopoly around here, so they can do whatever they want in this Capitalism Gone Mad country.

Glands and the Ice and Snow

A couple years ago I gave up using wireless gadgets and microwaves. Starting in 2000 I began having a serious problem with lymph glands swelling. Some were surgically removed and tested, and thankfully benign. But they didn't stop swelling up. Like ants, you take one away and there's four more popping up. It was worst on my left side, between my ear and collarbone.  My collarbone disappeared under a mound of swollen glands. My neck and left side of my head were full of little lumps. Something was going on. But doctors had no answers. "You're just one of those people who have swollen lymph glands", one said to me. Like that's normal. Well ya know what? They hurt. I didn't know anyone else who "just have swollen lymph glands."

Around 2009 I did an internet search and saw many people complaining of similar things. They talked about suspecting microwave sickness. Curiousity rose. I spent a lot of time with a cordless phone tucked in the crook of my neck, the same area where the glands were running riot. Circumstantial and maybe coincidental, but still... As an experiment I gave away my wireless phones and microwave oven and went back to old-fashioned tethered things. My glands receded. My collarbone reappeared. And Dr. Magda Havas read my blog and contacted me. She's investigating these things about microwave sickness.

Last year, out of necessity while being homeless and in other people's places, I used Wifi, microwave ovens and cordless phones. My collarbone disappeared under lumps. Behind my ear all those lumps rose again. But beggars can't be choosers and with everything else going on there was no point in addressing it. Doctors offered nothing anyway, I'd been that route several times.

In coming home I got back to corded things and no microwaves. It's two months later; my clavicle's back again, all but 2 of the lumps on my neck are gone and those 2 are small. I'm not saying, I'm just saying. If it's just coincidence it's a huge one. I think I'll avoid having wireless things for the rest of my life.

Totally apart from all that, we have a lovely wintry-white world outside. The temp has risen so there's splotting as the snow falls from the trees and the sidewalks are gray with ice and slush. It snowed just a bit earlier, a slight squall that put a little frosting on top. It's early snow, the sloppy kind we usually get in November and early December. But it's here and it's pretty. And above all, it's looking like January. A little normalcy goes a long way in this world these days.

Resting is Futile

Oftentimes this kind of weather screws with gimps and this is one of those times. There's no getting comfortable lying down tonight. Doesn't help that today was the day of heavy phone conversations and surprisingly bad news that still hasn't quite sunk in.

But I'll blame the weather for all this, and understand why my grandparents and parents did. It's true anyway. A swing in the weather means crapola coming. Even when life's going along like a healthy puppy.

So the deal is to get really dragging yer ass nodding off tired because then even the pain won't keep you from sleep. At least for a couple of hours. Sleeping was good. I miss it. Staring at glowing screens helps burn your eyes out. Sit in one position and never move. Pull a throw up to your shoulders. Take an extra Aleve. The latest I can sleep in is 9. If I get to sleep in the next 2 hours I'll function. If not I'll spend half the day trying to keep my mouth shut. The only good thing out of that is that by tomorrow night I'll be sodead that I'll crash and sleep for 12 hours. It ain't my first time at the rodeo.

So I'm gonna go read some news and then stupid things and by then I should be nodding off.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Complications Set In

It's been one of those days where not everything quite made it to the finish line. Ach, that's life, there are days like that.

But the drapes are up in the bedroom, the clothes are put away, my Greg dress came and it's perfect and Day 10 of the Hi Pro Glow is nearly done. Things are coordinated for tomorrow, and there's a long list of things to do already waiting.

Had a nice chat with my brother, for once. He's okay. We caught up and it was good. I miss him, the big creep.

The Beest has been sleeping a lot the last 3 days. She's not off her oats, isn't gakking and seems fine. Perhaps she's just gotten comfortable. She slept all the time at Strider's house. I got a couple of good pix of her today on my new digicam.

Speaking of Strider, she's on vacation and I hope she's having fun. She got outta New England just in time!

I think there's something about the snow and winter that tires one out. I'm entirely dragging and it's only 6:30. It's like I could sleep for a week, and not care what I miss or what doesn't get done.

The Shire is under that blanket of quiet that comes with a good snowfall. Voices don't carry, the homes themselves change acoustics, insulated and snug. I think it's early to bed tonight with comforter and book.

It's Vermont After All!

Just when I'd begun to think that the world had turned on some strange pivot that had put us in an equatorial zone, winter finally arrives.

Aaaah, it's beeeeyoootiful out there.

I'm gonna attempt loading the software and getting this camera up and running... I'll be back.

Boom! Brrurrrrrr! Beep Beep Beep!

5 a.m. The Beest and I jolt awake and about 4 inches off the bed as a Shire snow plow goes back and forth, back and forth, right outside my bedroom window. "Holy crap!" I say to the cat. "We must've gotten real snow." Well, I went to bed at 11 last night. It hadn't started by then. Beest and I head for the bathroom and I look out there. "What?" There's maybe an inch out there. As the Tonka toy plow goes back and forth another dozen times over the same patch I catch the snow falling in its lights. It's a light, swirly snow.

Really, is it necessary to plow one inch of snow at this hour? And to run over the same ground a dozen times, spinning lights and beeps on high, plow banging the ground again and again, for one lousy inch of snow? Sounds like the sound of eagerness for overtime to me.

There's no going back to bed. I'm not deaf enough to ignore that much noise. So the Beest and I make our way to thekitchen and I start making coffee. Oh good, the plow has left the back of the building for the front. There's no more snow here than out back. But he makes a 45 minute job of plowing the 30 feet of street down this end of the Shire.

It's 6:30. It's seriously snowing, as I see in the headlights of another truck that's just pulled up and is idling in the road. I think whoever's in the Tonka toy has created an all-day job by simply starting so damned early before there was any snow or traffic to bother. Ah, here comes the sidewalk plower/blower. Running over the same ground the plow just did. Don't you love efficiency? I guess the office will appreciate it, when they come in to work in a few hours. It'll have been plowed for 4 hours already by then.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Maybe, Perhaps, Possibly

There is a winter weather advisory issued for New England. We may get up to 6 inches, or it may be sleety-sneety-rain. This would be a boon to the ski resorts. So far it's been scarily bare. The coming weekend is a normally huge tourist weekend.

Two things make me take this seriously. First, the full moon. Storms are always bigger around the full moon. We're just starting to wane, so it's a tough call. Second, it's predicted as a two-day event. If it really is that much of a wallop, we just have to get some of it. Please. Let it snow.

You see, it's not just the ski industry that needs it. The ground plants need it. The ground itself needs it. The maple trees need it. Hell, all the trees need it. I haven't worked on a farm in 31 years, but I know the farmers are watching. You have to become a weather watcher if you farm; it can make or break you. We really don't need to lose anymore small independent farms in Vermont. So please, yes, bring the snow.

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

This is good all the way around. A win-win situation.
http://www.anh-usa.org/reduce-your-heart-risk/

Very bad- 30 Arrested - "Intent to Feed" the homeless.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQZjXDuGh6Y

Ugly. Ugly all day.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvrofhdK6PI

Back to Work

Last night after everything was done- making the pasticcio, cleaning up the mess, tending the Beest- I finally got back to the book.

I'm reevaluating the chapter about attitude that put me in a meltdown when I was at Strider's. Sparked my whole interest and enthusiasm again. It's half done; maybe I just needed time and space, to get back to normal before I could face it. Talking about becoming disabled when you were once very active is heavy. I guess the world just got to be too much with me.

And, Lawless of
http://mybabyjohn.blogspot.com/
sent me a beautiful watercolor set. Nothing I'd ever seen before. Hope I get to try them today! Thanks Lawless!

In any event it's good to be back at work.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Bravo Brattleboro

For all the trials and tribulations, for all our infighting and arguing, we're a good little town. We usually do the right thing. We work on things and battle it out. There are some incredibly good and committed people here. So I just want to share with you some of our stuff.

Our town's television station has really grown:
http://brattleborotv.org/?q=watch/watch

So has our local radio talk show:
 
And our only local independent paper
 
And iBrattleboro passed 36 million pageviews
 
Here's my pal Daryl talking about the Heat Fund
 
Every June we Stroll the Heifers
 
And every February we Ski Jump
 
Sometimes we're silly
 
Sometimes we're serious
 
But we're always up to something
 
If you ever get the chance, come visit. Look me up, I'm around.

The Rich are Doing Very Well, Thank You

Rolls Royce is prospering
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-16467885

The others aren't hurting
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bmw-audi-mercedes-bet-on-luxury-sales-surge-2012-01-09

Oil's not doing badly
http://thinkprogress.org/romm/2011/10/28/355891/chevron-profits-oil-companies/?mobile=nc

Banks are expecting 57% profit this year
http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2012/01/05/financial-stocks-analysts-expect-bank-profits-to-r.aspx

You can always tell by the shoes
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/04/business/sales-of-luxury-goods-are-recovering-strongly.html?ref=business


Scott Fitzgerald wrote:
"Let me tell you about the very rich.  They are different from you and me. They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand. They think, deep in their hearts, that they are better than we are because we had to discover the compensations and refuges of life for ourselves.  Even when they enter deep into our world or sink below us, they still think that they are better than we are. They are different."

The Year of Dreams

This is turning into an interesting year. Not only have we got Greg's concert in April, but at some point Uncle Glenn's estate will be settled. I didn't know he'd put me in his Will, but he did. In all the years I knew him, we talked about the UK and he made me promise that one day I'd take the train from London to Edinburgh.

Who knows how much there'll be once the smoke clears. But I think there'll be enough to get me there and back. I've never been to Europe. It's what UG would've wanted and what I've wanted all my life. I'm not getting younger. It's time to make some dreams come true...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Weekday Update

I don't know about you, but every site I visit, every vid or audio clip I play is preceded by a Mitt Romney ad. Just how much payola is behind this guy?

Grandpa the monkey picked his NH Repo winner
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/grandpa-spider-monkey-picks-gingrich-win-n-h-primary-article-1.1003325

Gabby Giffords is still on the mend, a year later:
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/survivors-tucson-shooting-mark-anniversary-poignant-video-calling-tighter-gun-control-article-1.1002528

Ziggy Stardust is a pensioner now
http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/graphic/2012/jan/07/infomania-david-bowie?INTCMP=SRCH

No time or patience for the Downton Abbey 2nd series? Read the synopses:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/series/downton-abbey-episode-by-episode

There's too much going on in the MidEast to just pick one story
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/middleeast/roundup

The Irene cleanup continues
http://www.commonsnews.org/site/site04/story.php?articleno=4663&page=1

Study: psych drugs and diabetes link
http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20120109/NEWS03/120109024/Vermont-data-show-diabetes-psych-drug-link-?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|s

Why Vermont has no snow
http://www.ibrattleboro.com/article.php/20120109114221361

Thanks for the Doorknob Hanger

A knock on the back door interrupted the putting away of stuff. I gimp on back there to see two wildly smiling younger people. "Hi!" says the woman one. "We're from yada yada and we're here to help." I nod. "We're going around offering assistance to everyone affected by Irene. Were you affected?" "Yes,"  I say, "The whole area was evacuated and homeless last fall." The smiles never fade. "Well, is there anything we can help with?" I look at them. Of course they mean well so I won't turn into Susie Sarcasm on them. We all know that the help I need, unpacking, sorting, putting things where they'll live, isn't their form of service. It's nobody's form of service. "No." I reply. "Can I give you some lit in case you find something we can help with?" "Sure." I say. And she hands me a doorknob hanger. They're a "support organization" from the State Dept. of Mental Health.

Are you serious? 4 1/2 months after the fact, now you wanna know how I'm doing? This is like the services offered after we were back here a month, in "applying for help and adjusting to changes". That phone call went to the Ashram that I left in September and they called Nancy's looking for me- in December? What the hell use is it so long after the fact, after we're already back in our homes and have fought the fight? Where were these do-gooders when we did need them? Any clue what rapid changes we went through in the thick of it and how maybe we could have used someone's shoulder to cry on while it was happening? Luckily I had my friends and Strider to lend shoulders. There were others who didn't have my luck. And guess what? Those unlucky aren't back here. They're away in treatment of one kind or another.

So yeah, that's all very nice and would've been useful- in September. As is, thanks for the doorknob hanger. I'll make a "Do Not Disturb" sign out of it so it doesn't go to complete waste.

Meatful Monday

Today is 7 days on protein. Ketosis is kicking in, the bad breath and all. The bread jones has moved along and now I have visions of pasta dancing in my head. Which is made worse because I have to make pasticcio for Wednesday's Heat Fund on the Radio. And there's no part of that I can have. So I'll make it quickly, with unboiled pasta tomorrow, and cook it off fast on Wednesday morning. Meanwhile the key is to not get too hungry (I'm at the "I hate everything but what I can't have" phase) and stay busy.

A great perk of last night's television- the return of AbFab via BBC America. Just as fab as ever, 20 years later. It's sooo good to see the girls again. My only complaint is that it was over too soon. Talk about leaving them wanting more!

T'ain't hard to stay busy. There's undecorating to do. The bedroom still isn't finished. And I can always do more unpacking. I haven't even connected the dvd player to the tv yet. The ladles and the knife steel are all MIA 2 months later along with several other things. So yeah, no dearth of stuff to do.

This morning I'm gonna fill up on coffee and get going at things. I'll be back with news at break time.

Meanwhile, here's something to ponder:
http://edge.org/conversation/the-evolved-self-management-system

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Do They Know it's Wintertime at All?

It's January 8th and it's 40'F according to my outdoor thermometer. We've had some cold (last week) and some snow (twice since I've been home but it doesn't stay). This isn't right. At this rate there won't be a January thaw because there's been no deep freeze.

In the last years I've noticed that seasons have moved by a few weeks and that Spring and Fall have been shorter than ever. And I'm sure there have been other New England winters when there was no snow and it felt more like Florida than Vermont in January. Last year snow didn't come til after Christmas. But we're 2 weeks past Christmas now and there's no sign of snow in the forecast for the week ahead. Temps are expected to be around 40'F in the day every day, with rain on Thursday. The 2 big ski weekends are the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday and Presidents' Day. MLK Jr. is the coming weekend. This weather is no good sign for our tourist-based economy, and adds to the already depressed and struggling times we're in. First Irene put the kibosh on the Peeper Season (though I'm told there were gawkers for the storm destruction) and now this. Not good. As travel writers have noted, the people who have timeshares and second homes will come anyway- there are snow machines to make up for it- but the random "Let's go ski this weekend" folks won't be showing up, and they make up a lot of the profit.

So these are nervous times. Pray for snow.

105 Days to Greg

Day 6 of the Hi-Pro Glow. Sick of meat. Remembering how this went last time. I pretty much stopped eating because I grew to hate proteins. But it works. Staying at under 22 grams of carbs can be made a game. If you care to. Me, I'm not caring. Just keep on keepin' on. My new dress is in the mail. I'll see results soon. The sugar craving is gone. Now there's a longing for bread. And so it goes. It's a luxury to be able to do a hi-pro diet. Kinda shuts my bitching off.

Some news bits:
Mitt's on my spit for later or tomorrow
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/08/new-hampshire-republican-debate-live

Hungary's fed up too:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jan/06/hungary-viktor-orban-faces-protest

"I do not think it means what you think it means."
http://bigthink.com/ideas/41764

Romney outsourced jobs? The dog story isn't bad enough?
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/obama-touts-jobs-numbers-swipes-romney-outsoucing-business-career-article-1.1002233

We lost Ronald Searle this week. Thank you for St. Trinian's, Mr. Mole.
 http://ronaldsearle.blogspot.com/

My favorite Jumbafund vid:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZvSD1O86M8

"Living Homes"
http://xfinitytv.comcast.net/tv/Wired-Science/95583/771692345/Earth%3A-Icy-Depths/videos?skipTo=1004&cmpid=FCST_hero_tv

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Amazing Stories

Truth is always stranger than fiction. Some of us have incredible life stories and most of us who get some years behind us have seen things nobody would believe. Regular humanity's stories are as awe-inspiring and surprising as anything by Homer or Dickens.

Here's one helluva woman:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2012/jan/07/winnie-johnson-keith-bennett-moors-murders

Some pack 80 years into 12:
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/child-cancer-blogger-jessica-joy-rees-dies-age-12-battling-brain-tumors-article-1.1002107

Life takes unexpected turns on everyone
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/staten-island-priest-bolsters-feds-mob-case-high-school-lunch-contract-extortion-prosecution-article-1.1001149

And given a reason, people will do good
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/supermarket-raises-thousands-peter-figoski-scholarship-fund-article-1.1001576

Even in the normal course of life experiences there is a story
http://www.commonsnews.org/site/site04/story.php?articleno=4671&page=1

More Fun and Games

Which Downton Abbey character are you? (Can't believe I missed this the first time):
http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/quiz/2011/sep/13/downton-abbey-character

Match the dictator to the country:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/quiz/2011/dec/19/dictator-quiz-match-the-strange-fact-to-leader

The Jung Personality test (I'm an ENTJ):
http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/JTypes1.htm

What kind of humor do you have?
http://www.okcupid.com/tests/the-3-variable-funny-test

Which Shakespearean character are you?
http://www.okcupid.com/tests/the-shakespeare-character-test

Friday, January 6, 2012

I'm Not Alone

Because I'm such a masochist (I blame the Episcopal upbringing) when Gal Friday said there were little cakes in the community room I said, "If they're small, please bring me one." So she did, a little 6" layer cake. I knew I had company coming so I thought, "well if I fail now, only 4 days in, I'll be ashamed so my pride won't let me." This is how I make myself do things. Cold turkey, head-on Viking stubbornness. Unless I test and torture myself it's not right. It uses my damning pride to keep me in line.

So yes, company came and guess what? Everyone's on a diet and going through sugar withdrawal after a very pigout holiday season. They hovered around the table where the cake was. Resistance was futile. The cake is gone. I have a bit of guilt. But I still have my damning pride.

Day 5 starts tomorrow.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7AlEvy0fJto