Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Tip It Now

Fally

Chilly and misty today and October stretches out on the couch. I hope children will come pick up the individually baggied candy on the 31st. I am going to rig up a table and a flashlight by the sidewalk for them and watch from my stoop. Gotta get some pumpkins. The squirrels will savage them so we can't get them too early. I have put out some black sunflower seeds for the jays and squirrels on our back deck. The bluejays keep trying the feeder but they are just too hefty to land on its petite edges. 

Treats

I like to save my pleasures and dole them out so they'll last a long time. Currently watching the Brits bake every Friday and I think we're a week or so behind the releases. The last season of Schitt's Creek is also a weekend treat. I'm trying to get my workouts in to help me sleep, build that immune system and help me expend just a few calories. 

After hitting the boredom wall last weekend I dragged out my knitting project sweater from 3(?) years ago. I previously completed the front and back along with the dreaded neckline. Now I have succeeded in starting one sleeve. I'm looking forward to embroidering two big arrows on the front. So chic, right? It's a giant acrylic rectangular sweater that I plan to wear this winter. It has approximately 50 yarn ends - so far - that I will have to weave in. That may be the steepest barrier to finishing. Oh or possibly running out of yarn, but I hope not. I recommend the Song Exploder (podcast turned Netflix series) for listening while knitting. 

Civix

I dropped my ballot off this morning at the courthouse. As a voter I am a super predictable member of my class/education/age cohort and liberal university town. Hope actually seems possible now and I've lost the background nausea about my country that I was feeling over the summer. The worry and fury are still there but there seems a glimmer for the future. 

I leave you with the words of tired, witchy, bitchy ContraPoints as she argues about the importance of voting with the communist cat girl in her brain. She deftly describes our current reality from far left to far right and back again. And ends with the dull but necessary plan-to-vote instructions applicable to all of us USers. 


 I hope she stumbles upon some hope and joy soon. That goes for everybody. Upswing for all.    

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Creeps in this petty pace from day to day

 Y'all! It's past the first week of October! Time is moving it's just hard to observe it. Do the thing that helps you get through whether it be work, exercise, indulgence, or holding a comfort toothpick.   

Kangaroo rat being fitted with a tracking 'backpack'


Thursday, October 1, 2020

Watching and Listening

Eyes 1
Enola Holmes - a fancy picture book that kept me entertained. What a cast! The writing is a little simplistic but at the same time it creates an interesting world that never was. The male 'young love' character is a gratifying gender swap of many girl roles of yore. The determination of almost all adults to allow EH to roam the city seemed rash. Fiona Shaw is wasted as a flat villain but I'll forgive it for her initial motorcar appearance. 

Eyes 2
Michelle Buteau's stand up on nflx gets my enthusiastic guffawing recommendation. 


Ears 1
I've been grabbing CDs from the Jazz section in my library. I find the genre funny in that it contains both of these good listens:

Ranky Tanky. Band info "This Grammy Award winning, Charleston, SC-based quintet, performs timeless music born from the Gullah culture of the southeastern Sea Islands." The music has a lot of folk and gospel but also excellent musicians who get solos so I guess that's the jazz part. Album info. I've been singing That's Alright since hearing this. 

House of David by Lea DeLaria. I did not know what this was and listening to it cold was hilarious. I had to think about whether I liked it and decided that mostly I do. The arrangements are very well thought out. LDL sounds more feminine than I expected (which is all on me). 


Ears 2
Old 97s appear in tomorrow's 10/02/20 offering at Bandcamp: Good Music to Avert the Collapse of American Democracy, Volume 2. I scanned through the artists and found Mexican Institute of Sound and now I am in love. Song is great, content warning about violence in the video: Mexico. More great sounds: Alocatel. More info on the CD fundraiser:

The collection will be available for 24 hours only, exclusively via Bandcamp, this Friday, October 2nd starting at 12:01am PT.

100% of the net proceeds from the album’s sales will go to Voting Rights Lab, a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization that brings state advocacy, policy, and legislative expertise to secure, protect, and defend the voting rights of all Americans. 



Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Away and Back Again

Time off
 Took two days off from work making for a 4 day weekend. It was not a vacation:

  • no travel
  • no meetup or hookup

but it was a vacation:

  • no thinking about doing any work related activities
  • actual refreshment happened. 
I remembered two dreams (imminent baby adoption; taking an essay test with the question "What is limited in fairy tales and how do those limitations function in the story?" to which I had like 4 examples in the dream that I wish I could remember). I took a nap one day. I did errandy and appointment things in the middle of the day. I cooked. 

Aw, fudge
Catherine Newman rules and so do her kids. Her Insta (I try to care about reading people there, but I don't) and almost defunct blog (nostalgic sighs). There's a penuche fudge recipe at the blog if you need one. 

Imposing order
My college fresher completed her online orientation and her job training week. She started classes this morning. Two days as a teller so far. I'm quite proud of her. It's a lot and I hope she can do it all. 
   
Wretch
Our world news is upsetting these days. I filter vigorously to be able to keep a fairly even keel. I am in favor of the exposure of ghastly deeds rather than their cover up but I can't be a witness every day. Infinite bless the journalists and stubborn truth tellers. I want to be further into the future now but one day at a time is the only option I've been given. 


Friday, September 11, 2020

Kindling

Puppet show
My UK based friend recommended The Windsors on nflx and I am sharing on this vital info. It is a super silly soap opera spun out of the current British royals. My favorites are Beatrice and Eugenie but they all make me laugh. It's very exaggerated and the drawling gets me every time. The way Charles says 'America'! (Closest I can get is Ah-merri-kay but you have to say it while also pulling your lips back from your teeth as though you were a Nick Park claymation character.) It's the same sort of thing as the SoCal drawl they did in The Californians soap sketches on SNL. That kills me too and yet it leaves my spouse unmoved so your mileage may vary.  

Someone tweeted recently that they keep a list of dumb things that make them laugh and I support this practice wholeheartedly. 

Stumpy!
Some time after we moved to this house (a year and 2 months ago - yay!) we noticed a squirrel with just one inch of tail. It was in the company of other young squirrels and we started calling it Stumpy as it was so visually distinct. I'm happy to report that Stumpy is still around, busy doing squirrel business. Long may they scamper.

Chickens, roosting
This week I am seeing many references to the fossil fuels industry promoting the (mostly) myth of plastics recycling. It was seen as a way to promote plastic use without needing to follow through. I'm reminded of many 70s era speculative fiction stories about humanity choking itself in trash and air pollution. There was some pull back from those (literally) dark days. We mostly got rid of CFCs and made some air and a bunch of waterways much cleaner. And it's time to do it again. I hope there's a will. The scorching of the entire left side of the country seems like it would be a motivator.  

Getting overwhelmed is easy these days. Compassion-fatigue, outrage-fatigue, even just attention-fatigue is wearing at us. Time to look for the next right thing, the next necessary thing. 


Thursday, August 27, 2020

I hear there's a hurricane or two

 <hair blown back, face blank>

<blinks>

We are past the middle of the first week of classes. Today's call volume has slowed a lot. And that's good because there isn't much brain left up in here. 

 I haven't kept up much news-wise. It sounds as though real bad things continue to happen and I'm going to try not to inquire too deeply unless it's local. At least for a few more days. 

Looks like our stretch of hot dry days is going to end on Sunday evening. I have been trying to remember to water things. My caterpillar children have gone off to seek their fortunes. My entomologist friend says that they weren't necessarily eaten by birds (my first theory) but may have moved to a different spot to cocoon. Bless the little critters. 

Oldest has spent a week in her new place and it's starting to feel like the new normal. Youngest is working on moving furniture over into the larger bedroom. I think the bed goes today. And then I get to move some of my stuff into the (spare!) closet. Such anticipation.

Local covid cases have gone up statewide and several of the fraternity/sorority houses are in quarantine right now. Long sigh. So glad my kids are doing remote school but then again, so wishing we could all go out and socialize. Dull achey feeling about that. 

Be kind as you can. Protect the vulnerable. Recognize the humanity in those you interact with. It's not much but it's what I've got. 



 

Friday, August 14, 2020

Smoke 'em if you got 'em

I'm surprised by a little dip in the work requests today. We were hopping last week but this week must be the calm before the storm. I will remember to breathe and take care of administrivia and so on. 

I'm reading The Library Book for my next book club meeting and it's just as good as I had hoped. I thought I had read one of Susan Orlean's nf books before but now I don't think so. I think I just know her from New Yorker articles. It's sort of a comfort read but also, like so much else, a melancholy reminder of the lost world we all lived in as recently as the beginning of this year. 

I have just ordered the other book group's book The Old Man and Me by Dundy. But got email from the bookstore that it's back-ordered and may be weeks. So I will check in with that gang soon to see if they have it and still want to meet on time. I haven't read The Dud Avocado and it's been on my list for a long time. The library has that one so maybe I'll substitute while waiting. 

Intrigued to hear about the Tom Holland flick coming to nflx. Will probably watch the second season of Umbrellas. Having a good time revisiting Scrubs. 

Things picked up before lunch so I don't think we'll have a sleepy afternoon.