Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Oh, snap…

When I woke up in the middle of the night last night like I usually do, I glanced out the window and saw that we had gotten a bit of snow.  Yesterday friends from the mid-west USA had posted photos on Facebook with bitter complaints about the weather because they had snow.  Didn’t the Powers That Be know that it was April 15 already??

  Here in Central Massachusetts, it was a nasty day yesterday but it was warmish so it rained all day and the wind was blowing like a son of a gun.  I thought that that was going to be the worst of it.  I wasn’t expecting snow.  But there it was staring me in the face at 3:30 a.m.  I didn’t lose sleep over it.  These late snow storms are ephemeral and really more like April showers than snow.  They don’t even make the flowers that are trying like heck to come up complain much.  But, here is what it looked like when Olive and I went for our walk this morning:

Looking out the window a little later, I saw that most of the snow was gone.  I went out and took a few snaps of the lonely flowers that are growing in our yard.  They looked a little down-hearted, but I think they will survive.  I suppose that that is the good news.

The bad news is that I felt like I had to put on socks today.  Oh, snap!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Never put a sock in the toaster and other musings about socks…

“Never put a sock in the toaster” is excellent advice from Eddie Izzard.  But sometimes I must admit to being tempted to do just that.  It’s the truth that my absolute favorite thing about spring and the coming warm weather is that I don’t have to wear socks, wash socks, match socks or, most of all, listen to complaints about someone’s favorite sock going missing.  Socks have been the bane of my existence since the day I got married and started doing someone else’s laundry besides my own.  I don’t think I need to mention any names here.

Personally, I tend to be a traditionalist about socks.  Most of mine are black or white because they are easy to match up and I can wear them even if they don’t “match” precisely as long as I have long pants on.  But I do like brightly colored socks.  I just don’t manage to get to the Bright Sock Store…ever. When my socks seem to be running low having been eaten by the dryer or when they acquire too many holes in places that make them really uncomfortable, I just pick more up in the supermarket.

I think that the very best advice I’ve seen on the Interweb about socks is from Jerod Kintz.  He said, “I soak my white socks in coffee, so I can wear them with brown pants and keep my feet from falling asleep.”  I may just decide to do that one of these days.  I need all the help I can get.

My daughter Carrie, on the other hand, is most definitely a bright sock person who has never even been too particular about her socks matching.  I call it Serendipitous Sock Syndrome but I don’t think it needs to be treated medically.  I actually admire SSS in a person.  Carrie recently brought me a bag of her old socks that are orphans or have holes in strategic places.  Those colorful socks will eventually be stuffed with organic catnip and made into catnip toys for some discerning cat or possibly a designer cat bed, giving these colorful old tubes a new lease on life.

Last year's selection of catnip toys and an upcycled cat/dog bed designed primarily by my friend Diane O-J and made in last year's colors.
Carrie does knit but I don’t think she has tried to make socks yet.  If she ever did, this story might just be about her:  A policeman spotted a woman driving and knitting at the same time.  Driving up beside her, he yelled, “Pull over!!”  “No,” the woman shouted back, “a pair of socks!”  Actually, Carrie is a very careful driver.  Just because she suffers from SSS, it doesn’t mean she would be careless with knitting needles.

But I know that most of you have lost socks in your laundry so you can, like I can, relate to this quote by Rod Schmidt:  “I washed a sock.  Then I put it in the dryer.  When I took it out, it was gone.”  My friend Kathi Clayton is a notable exception to this law of nature and claims to have never lost a sock in the laundry.  I think she needs to go on tour and explain exactly how this has happened. What’s your secret, Kathi? People would flock to her lectures.  She would be the next big thing and would be able to buy socks made of silk and cashmere woven with gold.  My guess is that socks like that would get lost.  What self-respecting dryer could resist gobbling those up?

Enough about socks, already!  I would say that it’s about time to put a sock in this blog post.  But I ran across this article written in 1979 by the incomparable Erma Bombeck.  Apparently she asked that people let her know their theories on the cause of socks going missing and this is what she found out:

Most of the writers zeroed in on sex.  Like coat hangers and paper clips, socks were believed to have an active sex life – but only in water.  Some believed they married, but they fooled around and often divorced in the dryer.  No alimony was involved.  Some stayed together through two or three washings, but suddenly turned into a swinging single.  One writer believed that socks went through a sex change, coming out another color.

                A large number embraced the Planned Obsolescence theory, that is a conspiracy between sock and washer manufacturers who incorporate sock disintegrators (right next to the button crusher) and sock sensors which grind up a sock and spit it out as lint.  The newer models even have a reconstructed sock cycle which returns a sock lost five years ago.

                There was a Sock Fairy theory for those of you who believe in Peter Pan, the Cloning theory where for every pair of socks an extra one is cloned driving you crazy with three socks of one color, and the Best Friend theory where your friend is secretly after your husband and both are trying to drive you whacko.  There is the Reincarnation theory where it is believed that a sock returns in another form.  (One woman swore that after five years of losing socks, they all came back one day as a sweater.)

                Some believed socks had an identity crisis and split.  Others leaned toward cannibalism.  One writer went for the Steve Martin theory where socks, instead of getting high on detergent, got small and disappeared.

                A great number believed socks to be a migratory species, activated by simply adding water.

                And finally, one writer blamed the United States government for programming washers to eat socks and keep the economy alive.  One blamed the Russians for undermining American women’s stability.  I’d have been disappointed if someone hadn’t said that.

My last words on the subject are that I’m just glad my dogs can breathe.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Study in Contrasts…

I’m joining the fun over at TexWisGirl’s Good Fences today.

Here are a couple of fences I’ve come across in the last couple of weeks.

This first one is not too far from our house and I pass it often in my travels.  It surrounds a beautiful estate.  It’s graceful and well-kept.

This second one here I found in Worcester, Massachusetts one day when I had to scurry over there for an appointment.  What the story is there, I have no idea.  But with the razor wire and the sneering face, it doesn’t look too welcoming.

It’s a curious thing that while the first picture is more appealing in many ways, the second one is much more interesting to me.  What do you think?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Life and Times of Olive the Pug: The Wait

This morning it looked like spring has finally arrived here to Massachusetts.  When I took Olive out for her morning constitutional, we decided to walk down to the pond to see if there was any ice left.  I am happy to report that all the ice is off the pond and this morning it was nice and flat.  We took a couple pictures that I will share.

This one reminds me of a picture of sound waves.

But we had to hurry home because Olive’s favorite people were coming to the house.  A few years ago when my knee was at its worst, I hired a couple of women to come and clean our downstairs.  They come every other week and mostly concentrate on doing the vacuuming and the floors.  It’s an indulgence that I haven’t given up even though my knee is much better now that it’s new.  One of the reasons I haven’t given it up is because Olive, the pug, loves these women.  I mean to say that she LOVES these women and she goes pretty crazy when she knows they are coming.  How she knows is a mystery to me, but she knows.  Here’s a video I took of her waiting for them to arrive:


If you watch the video, you can hear that I am still a bit under the weather because I sound a lot like Marge Simpson’s sister Selma and I don’t even smoke!  But every day, it gets a little better.

Friday, April 4, 2014

I Like Leftovers…

I am still feeling a bit low but getting better each day.  But I haven’t been feeling like going too far afield to look for green stuff.  A short stroll through our yard only yielded a couple of rather pathetic looking little snowdrops that have bravely popped out of the ground.  It’s not much, but it’s a beginning.
I’m sure that any day now, all sorts of green will burst forth.

Meanwhile, I did find some leftovers from last summer…the skeletons of once living flowers, seed pods and leaves.  I think they are still worthy of study.  So I gathered them up and here they are.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


No, I haven’t dropped off the edge of the earth.  After an extremely busy (for me, anyhow) week last week, I managed to pick up a nice head cold and have been rather out of it since Saturday night.  But I appear to be somewhat on the mend today, so I thought I would put out a short post.

We had a little bit of a set-back yesterday on our way to spring when we got a bit of snow overnight.  But it was gone fairly quickly and there are only a few stubborn piles lying around now.

Spring has finally sprung and it was a beautiful day here today.  The pond isn’t completely thawed yet, but it’s just a matter of time.

The rest of the week looks like a quiet one for me so I intend to use it to catch up with the blogging world and to get rid of my stuffed up nose.

Hope you all are doing well!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Facebook knows…

I had to take my Prius in today for an oil change.  There was a software update they wanted to do at the same time so I was stuck at the dealership for two hours.  I had just started reading The Cockroaches by Jo Nesbø so I wasn’t upset about having to sit around for a couple hours.  But at one point, I took a break to look at Facebook and decided to update my status to tell the world where I if the world cares.  But this is how the rest of the conversation went:

From my aunt:  Did you get a recall notice?

Me:  Yes.  They are updating the software.  Otherwise, it’s the usual countenance.  Gives me a good chance to dead.

Me:  I mean maintenance.  I don’t know where countenance came from.

Me:  AND I meant READ.  Dead…what’s up width that??

Friend from Canada:  fb is in your puter correcting your spelling for you…LOL!

Me:  They took a lot of leeway with width.

Me:  Or maybe that’s the Olde English-speaking.

Me:  Wow!  This thing is out of control today.

Friend from Ohio:  This is hilarious!  At least it didn’t change Prius to Reince Priebus.

Me:  What?  Lol.

Friend from Canada:  Prius?  Wait for it…Pretence…fb is testing your patience and listening to you wine…er…whine.

From my aunt:  I have an appointment Wednesday to get my software updated.  I’m going to leave the car for the day because it’s almost time for my 25,000-mile checkup.

Me:  I’ve got almost 60,000 on mine and it’s still ticking beautifully.

Me:  I wine…er…whine a lot, Friend from Canada.  lol.

Friend from Canada:  fb knows.

I did get a couple of odd glances from other people in the waiting room when I chuckled audibly.  I imagine that Facebook knew that, too.  But I sure hope that Reince Priebus isn’t keeping track of me.
  That would just be too weird.

No, I haven't lost my marbles.  As you can see, they are safely contained in a little glass bowl.