Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Bunnies everywhere

Learning more about wild rabbit habits. Yesterday evening the next door neighbor saw a rabbit in our shared corn patch and chased it over towards our yard. Then he saw three more adult rabbits and found one of them on a nest of newborn kits. He said he felt like he'd chased the scout back right into enemy territory.

That would be a third nest site. It is further from our front door and hard to spot in the grass so I'm awarding improvement points for that to Mama Bunny. We went over to peek at the squirmy hairless gray critters. According to the rabbitmatters page the kits will be independent in 30 days. I'll have to mow carefully for the next couple of weeks at least. Listened to rain in the night and had to be stern with myself. Wild rodents everywhere seem to get by without me setting up tiny tents for them in rainy weather.

Long weekend with only a few work thoughts. Mopped up two matters hanging from Friday first thing this morning. I feel lighter and happy that I did not have to login for work over the holiday. Lots of rain but it held off for most of Saturday so we got more done than if it had bucketed all day.

Score for the weekend:
One yard mowed
Two softball practices attended
Two softball practices missed
One really jolly party in the rain Saturday night
Two wins/two losses/one bellyflop for the Royals
One beesting
One pizza and pinball outing

I've finished skimming the bio of Billy Wilder that I started after watching Sabrina (1954) on tv one weekend. I made a list as I went through of all the films I wanted to see. Midnight (1939) was very charming in the first third, pretty charming in the second third and the last bit in the courtroom lost me. Easy Living (1937) is as funny as my friend Tim told me in 2000. Next on the list: Five Graves to Cairo, Ball of Fire and Sunset Blvd.

Two softball games every week for the next month or two.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Indigo Glory

Hippy bird day to me! Presentations done. My wonderful co presenter worked the room like a champ and gave me nice feedback. At least my stress makes me work on things now, not just dread them. There, Life, I have learned that lesson at least. 

Today we have a high of 58 and it's drizzly. The car wouldn't start this morning so I drove the backup jalopy. This birthday has been rescheduled for the long weekend when it may rain but the temps should all start with a 6 or better. Wonder if it's the starter or the alternator.

Saw an Indigo Bunting on Sunday, waiting for his close-up on top of a pine tree. I had no camera so will paste in this image from the Birds of St. Charles, Missouri site.
Indigo Bunting

The word indigo also brings to mind the late twilight sky last weekend when Venus and Jupiter were shining so beautifully in the western sky.

Dumb bunny came back and dug a second burrow about 30 inches from the first one. I am braced for further bad bunny parenting.





Monday, May 18, 2015

Progress

Irises have peaked on campus. Mulberries sighted on the trail by 13th St. White and unripe but plenty of them. Baby birds are peeping vigorously next door. A bunny dug a burrow eight feet from our front door, smack in the middle of the lawn. But I haven't seen it since that day so maybe it was just a practice burrow.

I spent the weekend managing my presentation stress. Practiced what I'm going to say on Saturday with Kat as audience. She was helpful and encouraging. After I was done, tears. I am not happy that my job makes me feel so vulnerable I cry. Practiced again on Sunday. Have more done today including a handout. Feel more able to show what I need to show. Very grateful that my co-presenter finished a good powerpoint doc, turned out a cute pamphlet and is carrying most of the load.

Nod got back after being at a retreat all weekend. This was a class with his shamanic teacher. The sessions he's done with her seem to affect him like concentrated counseling. He doesn't go every week he just goes for a weekend every six months or so. Came home looking exhausted and said that progress was made.


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Newberries

There are berries I have yet to encounter. For example I have just found a recipe for Saskatoon Pie. Yes, it's made with saskatoon berries but you can substitute blueberries if you have never heard of saskatoons before. I am reassured that there are still wonderful things to discover in the world.

Another delightful discovery came in this discussion of tattoos, fads and regrets: tramp stamp in German is "Arschgeweih", which translates roughly as "ass antlers."

Showing up and doing some things is still working at work. I am having some thoughts of job hunting for something that doesn't ring my Scary! bell. But so far so pretty good. The woman who hired me has shit to get done and I am a mostly willing pawn in her machinations. They aren't really machinations, just plans. As Nod says, looks like I have a mentor. Aieee.

Age of Ultron was our family movie outing last Saturday. It was entertaining throughout and scratched an itch but not a very memorable entry in the parade. I am *not* going to see Ant Man. I didn't read the source material and I have to put my foot down somewhere.



Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Spring placeholder

Masses of irises are blooming on campus. I have decided they smell faintly of jelly beans.

Feel overwhelmed and I have no final exams, no term papers, no projects. Maybe it's just being around others who do.

There are dates coming up for workshop presentations and so forth. I need to gird my loins again. C'mon loins!

It's been chilly the last couple of days which seems strange at the end of the school year.



Monday, May 4, 2015

Alternative Garlic

Wired article about a doctor who tried alternative therapies for his autistic sons and after years came to believe they were an ineffective waste of effort. Discussed as related to the public denouncing of Dr. Oz recently. My partner has a tendency to come home with bottles of herbal tinctures and blessed thistle capsules. Our kitchen cabinet is full of these things. We'd all like to be able to buy health. It strikes me that this desire could be satisfied with a quick offering at an altar if only we believed. Then we could buy a little cone of incense and burn it for Hermes. It couldn't hurt.

A co worker brought bagels on her birthday. The everything bagel is making me very happy in an onion/garlic way.

I have not done much exercise in the last month. This is disappointing because the temperatures are rising and there's plenty of daylight. The year is spinning on and I have not got a weekly routine going. Went jogging once last week. I would like to have exercised first thing in the morning. But I don't want to stop reading and get out of bed in order to start exercising then.

Yesterday was full of cooking win. All things I've made before, red chile enchilada sauce with corn tortillas, cheese, and a crock pot of chicken thighs for we meat eaters. The veggie had hers with black beans. Roasted broccoli crack which is like this Smitten recipe with lemon and garlic but gets even better with a hefty dose of parmesan cheese at the end. Roasted diced potatoes with garlic because, yes! more garlic. I had a mild regret about all the oven time after our house got too warm last night. We ended up running the house fan all night which was fine. No a/c yet.

Finished GOT season 4 last night. Off to sea toward Bravos for the more sympathetic characters. Sansa seems to be marshaling her powers and working with Little Finger rather than at his mercy so I guess that's good. I don't understand how the Hound and Arya missed finding Sansa at the Aerie. Also how could Brienne notice that Arya is missing and not check to see where the Hound's carcass ended up? I'm pretty tired of waiting for the zombies in the north to do something. Nice that Bran at least got to talk with the raven man. Now how to partake of season 5? Will consider options, budget and patience levels. I am not as hooked as I once was. I still would like to see Danaerys come across the sea. I'd love to see the grande dame of the House Tyrell do anything at all. But the cruelty, gore and goofy romance (Jon Snow and Ygritte, yeesh) have worn on me.   



Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Greens and Comment Vivre

Salad greens: it's either feast or famine, isn't it? We either eat them as soon as they come in the house and then pout when there aren't any more. Or we let them sit in the refrigerator and become a little rubbery before throwing them into something to get them used up before slime sets in. But the radishes I'm eating as soon as they get out of the ground. I've been sauteeing the greens with olive oil and garlic. No one likes them but me so I get to be greedy. The radishes themselves are very mild as we haven't had any warm weather to speak of.

I've been thinking about the global economy and fiction. I aspire to shabby gentility. I am a semi-intellectual who enjoys the simple life. To maintain this way of life I look for ways to not be consumed by the effort of making a living. I want to nurture my family, have some contact with both art and nature, and be in my community. Working is a good thing (social contact, learning, validation, feeling useful, paying bills, insurance) but I have little ambition and if I could do less of it I would. I hear about the current state of entry level jobs and the steeply rising cost of education and the growing wealth gap. All of these things make me think that it is hard to be a young American person now and not be ground down by the economy. It sounds harder than in the past, or is that golden age thinking? I hope that my kids will be able to find joy in the cracks somehow. But I'm not sure how to advise them. Fiction factors in because it can be a comfort against the large existential dread of considering these forces out of my control. I realize there is a particular kind of fictional development that pleases me, a happily-for-now description of friends and family and resources that allow for a rich life lived under the radar. I wonder if it is a complete fantasy. Perhaps in the long term. But I do believe it's a state that can be found in short bursts.

A vigorous article from David Simon on the future of the American economy and society. I appreciate his identifying a core question, are we all in this together? We are, and none of us get out of here alive.

Kat went to her schoolnight concert last night. I still can't believe I agreed to this back in December. It just seemed like a world away at that point. I told her I would pick her up at 11p, hell or high water or endless encores be damned. Happily their encores were many but were wrapped up before the hour of doom. I picked up a very happy, excited kid.


Notes from a few days ago that I may as well throw in here:
As Shalini once said, the secret to happiness is giant underpants. I bought some extra large the other day and have never been more content with my underpinnings. Good thoughts and good books to her wherever she is.

Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver and Shiva the destroyer or transformer. Hindu trimurti, three aspects of the divine. Although according to linked page it is not a current form of worship but something from the past. Brahma is not now widely worshipped according to that site. News to me!