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Posted at 08:04 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (4)
I was briefly in a hospital bathroom last week. A woman came in, and by the way she walked I could tell she was sick. Every move made her sigh, or grunt, or wheeze.
She got into the stall next to me and I heard a deep, long, loud sound. As you do, in a bathroom.
Then she announced, "That wasn't me. That was my walker."
It was a good laugh. When I got out of my stall I saw she had indeed dragged her walker sideways into the stall with her.
So, that's a good line if you ever find yourself in a public bathroom.
Posted at 08:43 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
Season 2 of Gentleman Jack cut back on the two things I particularly like: the carriage-bounding and the sly looks at the camera. I don't know if the lead actress came up lame or what, but they literally wrote the carriage out of the plot, shipping it off to London for repairs and replacing it with a smaller vehicle. And there were only a few direct looks at the camera. Sigh. That's your money-maker, HBO, why cut back?
The Staircase played it safe for the true-life tale of an ambiguous murder / accident / wildlife attack. If you want answers, you aren't getting them here. Colin Firth sums up the whole series in the last shot: he wanders through a trail of emotions just in case you might think you know what's in his head.
Jerry and Marge Go Large was a low-impact action-free caper movie telling the real-life tale of one man successfully gaming the lotto. Sadly, it had so many movie tropes and gimmicks that I spent the movie saying, "Oh come on. That's too pat. Did that really happen?"
Old was an example of M. Night Shyamalan banking on my poor memory. Trigger warning: our family was well represented, with MS and epilepsy both briefly taking the stage. Rufus Sewell is in it, and I should tell you right now, there is a big McGuffin that will not be answered until you look it up after the film is over.
They were all flawed but watchable.
Posted at 08:35 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
I may have taken the first step out of Covid vulnerability. I waited a month and the high liver numbers are trending down, so I might be able to stay on the statins that were messing with my liver, and therefore get my cholesterol low enough that I might feel confident in my heart health, to risk the cardiac side effects that come with Evusheld (the closest thing to protection that many immunosuppressed people can get).
Whew. That's five steps, and I've just taken one, and frankly no doctor has told me yet that I can stay on the statins, liver numbers trending down or not.
And of course, at the end of it all I'll still be old, and therefore still vulnerable, and probably not leaving the house. Still, I'd rather be stopped at the edge of the front porch then hiding back here in bed.
Posted at 08:08 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (0)
There in a flaw in the Mini Cooper design. When one is plugging in the charging cord, it is impossible to avoid ones reflection.
The window above the plug is reflective, and the blue-black body below is reflective, so you get two unavoidable images. Both reflections were so strikingly awful I had to come back out and take a photo.
Even worse, in the initial reflection that inspired me to post this, I was smiling AND looking down AND reflected from below. Even without all that, look at that wattle. I could carry a child in that pouch. And this after I've lost weight. I carry all my water weight in my wattle, evidently. I could live a month like a camel on that wattle water weight.
Oh, and then there's the funhouse effect if you look below at the chassis reflection.
(Yes, I sleep in a Barenaked Ladies t-shirt, and yes, I considered putting on a bra, but it would not help my thesis that my reflection in this car looks awful.)
Posted at 08:39 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (0)
I was in the dentist's chair waiting for the novocaine to kick in, thinking those pre-dentist thoughts.
Then I said to myself, "Ellen, dumbass, you've been going to the dentist for years and none of those things have ever happened."
Well, that was before the novocaine wore off in the middle of the procedure.
If you are wondering, well, store this away for next time you are in the dentist's chair: when the drug wears off it doesn't hurt for long because you yank your entire body away immediately.
"Oh!" the dentist said, "Did you tooth say hello? We'll just give you a boost." Like a bump, or a hit: all the druggie slang. But that shot didn't take immediately, so my tooth said "Hello!" again, and we had to wait a while longer.
This time before he started again he said, "Now promise you won't take a swing at me."
I said, "I can't promise you that."
He was very delicate, tapping my tooth daintily with the drill about seven times before he put any muscle into it. It was over soon afterward, except for the drooling. I didn't get my face back for three hours after.
It will be interesting to see if I'll be more nervous next time or less.
Posted at 08:09 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (2)
I asked Gary, "Why don't murderers kill people by just putting cyanide in almond cookies and just burning them a little? To trick those rare people who say cyanide smells like burnt almonds?"
After several side arguments from Gary (IT'S NOT CYANIDE IT'S STRYCHNINE / YOU CAN'T SMELL CYANIDE BECAUSE YOU CAN'T TASTE IT / ALEXA DOES STRYCHNINE SMELL LIKE BURNT ALMONDS) we found that I was partly wrong: the cyanide-smellers don't say the cyanide smells like burnt almonds, they say it smells like bitter almonds.
"Okay, fine," I said, "Then why don't they make almond cookies and add something bitter? Then no one would suspect. Everyone would smell 'bitter almonds' when they smelled the cookies."
He said, "What are bitter almonds anyway?" That led to some more research, and come to find out, you know what there's a lot of in a bitter almond? Cyanide.
So how is it that only "certain people" can smell cyanide? "It smells like bitter almonds," they say, smugly. Well, yeah duh. So they're really just special because they know what a bitter almond smells like. Can I get some bitter almonds, sniff them to see what they're like, then hire myself out as a cyanide-sniffing specialist?
Also, there still seems like you could "accidentally" swap out normal almonds for bitter almonds and murder someone that way, that would be even simpler. Especially since this Magic Nose Cyanide-Sniffer job seems to be a bust.
Posted at 08:25 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (2)
Posted at 08:23 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (5)
I have been alerted by YouTube that one of my videos has been tagged as Not Safe for Kids.
I would embed the scandlous video, but it insists you go to YouTube to view it. So here's a link, but you wont see much. You will see a gathering of a variety of animals, from the full-color days, a melting pot of wildlife, and then a skunk snaps at a raccoon who got too close.
Is it that kids don't need to see aggression without consequences? The email says I can protest, but I rather enjoy "'la scandale."
Posted at 08:43 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (3)
I was talking with my brother about our parents' divorce. We agreed on the date of the separation, the divorce, and the whisking off to Galveston and the subsequent end of summers with Jerry.
"And that was the last contact we had with him," I said. (The official end the relationship was the big "I will never see you again because it's just not worth it" speech from Jerry on the drive to the airport. Last contact, good riddance.)
"Well, for you, but he sent me letters," Dave said.
"What? What? For how long?"
"Two years. Then he stopped."
What ... the actual... Hell. If course, my brother doesn't remember what these special father-son letters said. And he doesn't know why they stopped. (We both know why I didn't get letters: girls don't carry the family name, so why bother parenting them?)
Also, sad for my brother. I'd rather have a kidnapping and legal action end a relationship than to just have it dwindle away. No wonder he has rejection problems.
Posted at 08:35 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
So, what I wanted to write about was how distressing it was that the renters painted the fireplace that I grew up scrubbing with ACID to clean while retaining the original color. That made me start thinking about the Japanese tree mural my long-dead Aunt Dolores painted in the foyer of the house on Jamieson Ave. I wanted to post a photo of that foyer, so that led to all the dozens of photos of mom, Dolores, and my Granceil (Grandmother Lucille).
I never found the foyer photo, but did find a wall painting Dolores did for, I suppose, a boyfriend.
However, that was not the most salacious thing I found.
I found this photo of Granceil with the long, LONG dead son Jimmie.
The family chronology is that Jimmie died of a contagious illness in the 1930's, then Mom got polio, and then my grandfather Earl couldn't take it anymore and became an alcoholic. My grandmother soldiered on, but soon tired of Earl drinking his paycheck away. She eventually divorced Earl and then met and married my step-grandfather Arthur in the late 1940s.
Uh, nope. I turned the photo over and read this note, penned by Mom in 2002:
"Around 1932 ... She is wearing a necklace given to her by Arthur in one of the many separations from Earl."
Wow. Wow. So, the love of the step-grandfather Arthur dated back to waaaay before I had been told. She was seeing him before Jimmy died, before Mom was born, before Mom got polio at 13, before Earl became an alcoholic? Wait what? If I shook my head right now, it would sound like Looney-Tunes slide-whistles.
And I don't remember Grandceil liking either man. She had bitter complaints about them both. No wonder she looks so unhappy.
Posted at 08:52 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
I am so delighted now that CNN no longer starts every hour with a 'BREAKING NEWS' logo. It just cheapened the news so much.
But now the big question: how will they alert us when the news is breaking, now that we're conditioned to ignore the breaking news graphic on the chiron, the one crying wolf (Blitzer) at the top of every hour?
Will they use the full screen logo when news breaks?
Of course I'd love the spinny stark retro Big Breaking News logo, the one that really gets me going. Back in the day when breaking news meant something, baby.
Of course, the day I realized CNN really had scaled back and acknowledged that there isn't a breaking news story at the top of every hour? That was the same day that MSNBC broke in with their breaking news logo, and reported that "MARCH THAT BEGAN AN HOUR AGO IS STILL GOING ON."
Posted at 08:01 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
I just complained bitterly to Gary that he hadn't done or said anything funny for a least a year.
"You used to be great blog fodder. I could write up some goofy thing you said and get a blog post out of it. Do something funny."
He just frowned at me, and then looked down, then looked back up at me, and I realized he was standing there with his pants off and his penis tucked into the center of a roll of toilet paper.
Posted at 08:24 AM in In Which We Mock Our Husband | Permalink | Comments (0)
Posted at 08:54 AM in In Which We Mock Our Illness | Permalink | Comments (0)
Posted at 08:56 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (7)
Another visit to the dentist. When I had my root canal I heard the dentist was too booked with two years of neglected cavities that I couldn't schedule a regular cleaning for another six months.
That means I haven't had my teeth cleaned for a few years now. I warned the hygienist it was going to be bad. I've been flossing, but there have been a lot of days I've been taking "hygiene vacations".
Two cool things happened.
Back on the dentist wagon, then. It does give me a chance to see other people, I guess. My schedule is so empty I'm almost looking forward to getting this cavity filled.
Posted at 08:01 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (0)
My word, thirty-seven years. It's just sheer stubbornness now.
What have I learned in that time? I've learned the care and maintenance of Gary.
*No, really, there's a footstool I pull up by his chair.
It's pretty easy, now that I've got the hang of it. It keeps me out of trouble: I don't want to be the second person Gary's argued with in a day because I get the fallout from both arguments And not to worry, a few hours after that twenty minutes I'll approach him with the idea that perhaps there's another way of looking at a situation.
I've only learned this in the nine years since he retired. It was harder when he was working, his ego would take a hit at work and I wouldn't know if I should listen, agree, or learn.
I am sure he does the same for me with my foibles. Well, no, I'm not sure. He does listen to my work conversations and tell me that anyone who disagrees with me is an idiot.
37 years. Pretty great.
Posted at 08:55 AM in In Which We Mock Our Husband | Permalink | Comments (0)
I fell so many times in the front yard last year that it's on my neurology chart. Up till yesterday we had over a hundred days without an accident.
I wasn't doing anything athletic, I was sitting low on the rock wall, and I tried to stand up and lost my footing. Totter ... totter ... succumb to gravity ... rear, back, head.
Laugh in case anyone is watching.
Then if course today I used my new extendable telescoping overhead hedge trimmer. Worked great. No accidents. Unless you count slicing through the extension cord twice.
I taped the power cord twice, and now the things it powers make an alternating grinding sound. GRRRRRRgrrrrrGRRRRRRgrrrrr. Iffy. Possible I never noticed the sound before. So, I suppose that counts as an accident. Reset t0 0 DAYS WITHOUT AN ACCIDENT again.
Posted at 08:20 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (0)
So far I've avoided any affects of the recent shortages. There was a shortage of baby formula, and while I was sympathetic, that didn't affect me. Now I read there's a shortage of tampons. That will affect not only pre-menopausal woman but everyone with upholstery.
The gasoline crunch is so significant that Gary said, "I need to start driving the electric car." I only leave the house in the electric Mini once a week, while he's been stubbornly sticking with the '08 Honda Fit.
Since then he has declined every chance to drive the electric car. But at least he's talking about it, and given that Gary feels that economizing is an insult, it must be rough out there at the gas pump.
Posted at 08:04 AM in In Which We Mock Our Husband | Permalink | Comments (0)
Gary installed some electronic device that sparked, and after that it went in the trash and all our devices needed to be reconfigured.
Gary, who is Mr. Technology, did not want to synch his bedroom light to the Alexa again and I swear he reverted to 40 year old technology.
Posted at 08:21 AM in In Which We Mock Our Husband | Permalink | Comments (5)
Before I began watching the Jan 6 Hearings, I viewed it like a Marvel summer blockbuster. Would it would live up to the hype? Or would it just be a rehash of the disappointing prequels: the toothless Impeachment Trial #2, Electric Boogaloo?
It was interesting seeing Ivanka jolt like a nervous Bichon Frise and say, "I respect Attorney General Barr," when he spoke against her father. Sad to hear Jared call the brave staff who threatened to resign, "Whiners."
When I heard the police officers saying they'd lost the line, I worried each was an officer who committed suicide in the next few days.
And any shabby hotel I stay in will now be described as "not as satisfactory as we would hope" ala the Nick Quested the documentarian.
There were parts I couldn't watch: the officers being shoved, the woman telling the police, "No, you back down," anything with the blond officer fighting against the huge crowd of men with the bike rack.
But at its heart, it didn't have what I want: a smoking gun in Trump's hand. Still, I want to hear more about what Mr. Quested saw when the Proud Boys didn't walk where he expected and why he had to be subpoenaed, or why there were several police suicides after, and anything Trump said on tape. More episodes next week.
Posted at 08:46 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (2)
Posted at 08:43 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (3)
Screw concert replays and Q&A sessions, THIS is the communal experience I have needed. Two devices: one for Twitter feedbaxk, one for Facebook.
When I was a kid my unemployed father watched the Watergate news. I asked the new neighbor if she was watching, and she said she wasn't around to see the first crucifixion and she didn't want to see this one either.
That's what I'm hoping for, with Pence playing Judas and revealing secret tapes.
Posted at 08:46 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (2)
There have been a few loose ends after selling the house of my youth.
Posted at 08:12 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (2)
I was complaining about something at work, and a colleague said, "I feel like I should give you a little plastic army man." He answered my befuddled face with, "Haven't you seen Ted Lasso?"
That was mystifying, then six months later I asked another colleague why his Zoom background was a locker room image and got the same response.
When a third colleague gave a five minute powerpoint presentation on professional development using nothing but stills from Ted Lasso ("How does Roy Kent utilize transparency to transform from the person he was in Season One to hugging Jaimie st the end of season two?"), I thought, "Oh all RIGHT already," and gave in.
It took a week, but I did it, I saw all the episodes. Some parts I believed entirely, like all of Jason Sudeikis' Emmy-winning acting, which shows up in ways you would never guess, but are hinted at at the end of the pilot. Some parts I did not believe, like the female lead's storylines, even though she also won an Emmy. I do believe that the two male leads are the writers, given the fun wordplay.
Obviously I would recommend it. Heartwarming but not cloying. Plus, now that I've binged it I can keep up with the Young Folks at Work.
Posted at 08:43 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (2)
During my first teaching job, I lived in a big three story house with two other women, much like Mary Tyler Moore's living situation if Rhoda, Phyllis, and Mary were too busy grading papers to speak to each other.
(An aside: Mary Tyler Moore lived behind the big window on the third floor (and Rhoda lived in a turret on the same floor; I just looked that up), yet Mary had a sunken living room. Who puts a sunken living room on the third floor? How does that happen? Is there a dropped ceiling on the second floor below Mary's apartment?)
I lived in the attic, which was described to me as a "garret." I shared the attic with what seemed to be one or two bees. Imagine a wacky episode in which Phyllis the landlady neglected to scare the bees out of the garret until one morning Mary was driving to work and a bee under her suit coat tried to bite her to death. (This episode would have subplots in which Rhoda got locked into the first floor bathroom, and Phyllis was dating someone from Iran.)
Those six months in that big house in Webster Groves were the only time I ever lived semi-independently, without my parents or Gary. I wish I'd taken time to have more fun. And I wish I'd spoken to those women more instead of grading papers every night. But I might as well wish I were a news producer in Minneapolis with a lot of bouffant hair and a sunken living room. We were who we were at the time.
Posted at 08:02 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (0)
I was out in the yard, assembling one of those hardware store decorative garden fences.
The panels sort of resemble this. you are supposed to shove a panel into the ground, then working left to right, position the next panel so the hooks on the left slide into the little cylinders on the right.
It took four attempts. The second to last time, I attached all the hooks and eyes, then lashed it together with zip ties, and then tried to hammer that into the ground, and that didn't work any better than the previous attempts.
Here is the trick. Plant your garden fence into a new garden. Probably not where you want to plant it. Not clay that has no wiggle room, not a lawn, not an existing bed with roots that throw everything off, just six inches of virgin topsoil. Works like a dream.
But, no one needs that advice, because -- as I discovered when I tried to look for a replacement panel -- they don't sell this hellish puzzle any more. (They've moved to a new puzzle that seems easier: there are just rings on both sides and you hammer a stake through the rings.)
It was a long five hours out in the yard, with breaks the three times I got hot and my eyes got blurry, but once I found the secret I got fifteen panels lined up in five minutes. They just aren't where I need them or want them, but like the wallpaper and the stenciling, it was so hard to do it will have to stay forever.
Posted at 08:44 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (5)
The summer I turned 11 I discovered the bus. There were no transfers involved, I just walked a mile and a half to the main road that wraps around Saint Louis and hopped on the bus marked SOUTH. I gave them some coins and kept quiet and got off the bus when I saw the place I wanted to be.
No one questioned me. I think it must have been after puberty, which ravaged me for a week, and after that I had 32 C breasts that came with a bus pass, evidently.
Usually the place I'd go was Northwest Plaza. The window shopping let me fantasize spending adult money, and that was unsatisfying. What satisfied was buying whatever food I could afford. There was a fast food place there, but I preferred the Magic Pan Crepe restaurant where I could buy soup and pretend I was independent. Then I would get in the bus marked NORTH and get back before my parents got home from work. As if I needed them. I could get soup ten miles away if I had to.
When my parents discovered I had been taking the bus -- I think I just told them casually, hey, I can just take the bus to Grandma's, she lives by Northwest Plaza -- they blinked a few times, looked at my breasts, and agreed.
At the end of the summer they sent me off in a bus to visit my other Grandma, the one who lived a hundred miles away. on that bus I sat next to a man in gauze pants who said I had pretty skin and asked if he could touch it. Obviously I said no. I am still alive.
There was a long gap in bus rides, because after that summer I had a new school and new friends with siblings who had cars. I don't think I rode the bus again until I went 30 miles SOUTH on the same bus, this time with a transfer, to buy a sword for my first serious boyfriend. This time mom was shocked, I don't know why, maybe it was the transfer, more probably it was the devotion to the boyfriend.
Then she sighed and said, "Well, you seem to be fine, I guess I don't have to worry about you." I think she should have stopped worrying after I told her about Gauze Pants Man.
I suppose there's just a moment in life when you have that magic combination of independence and time and breasts and bladder control to take a bus, but if you lose any one of those it's not an option anymore. I wonder what the senior bus is like. Is it full of independence, like my pre-teen bus? It's coming, I can tell you that.
Posted at 08:34 AM in In Which We Mock Ourselves | Permalink | Comments (4)
Posted at 08:12 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)
So, while I was navigating the USPS post office site to find my mis-addressed package, I found they have a new feature: Informed Delivery. If you sign up for it, a few days later they email you photos of the mail coming to your mailbox.
For example, today I am getting this piece of junk mail:
... plus a more officious-looking bit of junk mail:
... and two other pieces of junk. So, not going out to the mailbox today.
If there are packages, it looks like they list them separately. i almost want to send myself a letter just to see it show up in my email.
Posted at 08:48 AM in Miscellaneous Mockery | Permalink | Comments (0)