Sunday, July 24, 2016

I'm baaack.....

Lately I've found myself composing blog posts in my head while I'm taking a shower (one of the first signs of insanity in the 21st century). I've also found myself following several political bloggers that impress me (especially Jim Wright over at Stonekettle Station), and while I have no illusions about joining such illustrious company, I do feel the need to voice a few opinions to someone other than my shower head.

I'm also trying to write more regularly, and I don't always feel like working on my hot mess of a first novel, so I need an excuse alternative outlet for my words. I also need a better name for my blog, a better layout, and probably a better platform. All in good time.

In the meantime, I hope someone enjoys my bloviating. My shower head is already sick of listening to me.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

The more things change...

So I'm doing some research for the quasi-historical novel I'm attempting to write.  Note for the uninitiated: "research" is a euphemism for, "avoiding writing."  Anyway, as part of my, ahem, research, I'm going through old newspapers for this area so I can write an excerpt of an article in the right style for 1910 and also describe what else my character might see on the page.  See, research?

Anyway, during my research, I run across this gem from the July 1, 1910 issue of the Coconino Sun:

And here we are more than a century later, still kneeling and wailing.  And the cost of living is still too high.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas cards

I just finished about 30 Christmas cards. No, I'm not looking for a pat on the back. If I really had my act together, they would have been done two weeks ago. But at least they won't be New Years cards.

I had planned to send the family Christmas letter via email this year, but today I decided I really wanted to send old-fashioned snailmail cards. That's odd for me, because I usually find Christmas cards to be a chore. This year, though, I approached it differently. At each step - looking through my address book, addressing envelopes, writing notes in the cards, and even putting stamps on - I thought about each person, picturing them, remembering stuff we used to do together. Yeah, I know - cheesy, huh? But it was nice to remember and to feel connected to each person for those few minutes. I guess I'm missing those connections since moving to SoCal. So if you get a card from me, please know that while I was preparing it, I was thinking of you and probably remembering something funny and/or stupid we did together years ago. Yeah, that thought ought to brighten your holidays. You can thank me later.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Morbid sense of humor

So we're driving around San Dimas last Saturday, running errands, when we pull up behind this SUV at a traffic light:

Funniest license plate ever

Check out the license plate. In case you can't tell from the blurry cameraphone photo, it's a personalized plate that reads, "TOETAGN." But that's not all! The license plate frame reads...

wait for it...

"Hug a mortician... while you still can."

Yes. Really. I laughed for the rest of the day. Let's hope this witty undertaker parked in back of the funeral home, as I'm not sure grieving relatives would find it as funny as I did.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Preserve us from errant golf balls!

In case anyone ever wondered whether California's reputation as The Nanny State is justified, I give you the following paragraph from the Statewide Buyer and Seller Advisory, part of our home-buying paperwork:

18. ERRANT GOLF BALLS: Buyer and Seller are advised that if theProperty is located adjacent to or near a golf course there is apossibility that golf balls may damage the Property or injure personsor pets on it. Additionally, persons playing golf may enter theProperty to retrieve errant golf balls or for other purposes. Brokerrecommends that Buyer investigate the possibility during Buyer'sInspection contingency period. Brokers do not have expertise in this area.

Fortunately, our soon-to-be home is nowhere near a golf course, so we should be safe from errant golf balls and their equally errant pursuers.

Monday, June 21, 2010

A Father's Day Scene

Long time no post. I have a good excuse--relocating to another state and starting a new job--but I'll explain that in some future post. Right now I want to share something I witnessed this morning that reminded me of what it means to be a parent.

I was leaving the library at City of Hope (that's the new job I mentioned) this morning to go to lunch. There's a small pedestrian-only street running past the library. Sitting on the curb were a father and son, the boy maybe 6 or 7 years old. The father could have been AnyDad, sitting next to his son as they raced a remote-controlled car up and down the street on a lovely Southern California day. As the little boy watched the car zooming around, his eyes sparkled with delight, despite the nearly bald head and face mask that marked him as a cancer patient.

Of course I pitied the child. It's bad enough to get sick when you're an adult, when you've lived a bit and can have some perspective on what's happening to you. But, as a parent, my heart broke for the father. I cannot imagine the pain and terror that man has endured, fearing for his child's life and watching him suffer through treatment. But as I walked past them, playing there on the curb, I felt privileged to see what must have been a stolen moment of normality in the shadow of a high-tech cancer hospital.

To me, that little scene captured the essence of fatherhood more than all the Father's Day cards Hallmark can print.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Johnny B Goode covers

Yesterday the husband and I were listening to Chuck Berry's classic, "Johnny B Goode" courtesy of Taco Del Mar and wishing it could be re-recorded with today's sound quality and maybe with crunchier guitars. Then one of my Facebook friends (hi, Kevin!) posted a couple of cover versions, so I decided to visit that fine cultural repository known as YouTube to see what other versions I could dig up. Probably everyone has heard Elvis's version and the one from Back to the Future, but did you know that there are several reggae versions? And Tom Jones once covered this song? I'll spare you both of those, but here are a few that I thought were particularly good, capturing the energy and spirit of the original but a little heavier and rougher.

The best version I've ever heard, though, was courtesy of a bar band at a frat party when I was about 18. It may have been the mood and the venue, but it was just perfect.

Green Day:

AC/DC (with Bon Scott) and Cheap Trick:

A couple of guys from Switchfoot: