Tuesday, October 31, 2006

This week's Tuesday Morning's Scribute to 10am:

That's almost nice enough
to print out and hang on the refrigerator, isn't it?
Unless you have a stainless steel one.
Then you're crap outta luck
on hanging anything cool on that useless hunka.

HaPpY HaLLoWeeenNNnie
to all you Halloweeners out there.
Yes, I said "halloweener."
It's raining here, 70% scattered showers and all,
so there's about a 30% chance of trick-o-treaters,
the way I figure it.
And about a 90% chance of me
eating up all the halloween candy
before the little ghoulies even get here.
Then I'll just be forced to rummage
through the guest bathroom drawers
for something to give them,
like dental floss, or Kleenex.
Or...Wint-O-Green Lifesavers...
Uck. Why are those in here?*

No, I am joking,
I won't eat up the Halloween candy.
if it were Halloween corn chips instead,
we'd have a real problem.

*Oh, I know why.
These are the leftovers from The Experiment.
If your bathroom is dark enough,
and you chew Wint-O-Green Lifesavers
with your mouth open,
the Lifesavers will make sparks.

Why in the bathroom?
So you can see yourself in the mirror, silly!
And, so you can barf
right into the handy-dandy toilet

after you make yourself sick
chewing a handful of
Wint-O-Green Lifesavers.

And finally,
since I didn't waste any time making
caramel corn popcorn balls to give out
to the kids,
knowing the paranoid parentals
would just confiscate them and
send them off to a lab for analysis,
or the ungrateful monsters,
in protest of not getting
a sackful of fun-sized Snickers,
turn them into
useless weapons of corn destruction,
pelting each other
in my front yard
soon after I closed the door,

I had time to find a better treat for you.
Subscribe now to the free
series of 3 podcasts
from Ricky Gervais, extra-dreamy Steve Merchant and
Karl "orange-where-a-brain-should-be" Pilkington.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Je t'aime, CBC Radio 3!

Ok, not the most original headline, eh?

Again, not the most original subheader either,
playing on that Canadian theme.
But I'm a giv'r!*

*A truly Canadian term explained by Peaches
that you, too,

would know and love if you listened.

But I mean it. I really, really, really do.
If you aren't listening to
CBC Radio 3 online
or better yet by podcast,
then I am going to worry about you.
We might need to have a sit'n'talk.
I'll give you a moment to reflect.
Then get your backbacon to the website
and subscribe.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

New Firefox 2.0
to be released today,


New regular feature:
I don't know what to name it,
but it's a
"Tuesday Morning Tribute Scribble"
or "Scribute to Tuesday Mornings."
Or "Scribbling from Home."
Or "Home Scribblin' "...
Or, I don't know.
Something. I'm working on it!
But anyway,
this one is dedicated to the officedog
sleeping on my feet.
While he does offer many advantages and perks
to this new freelance position,

He does. He really, really does.
He's pointing at the cat,
but we both know the truth.

And finally,

the helicopters choppin' around the skies
of my neighborhood just reminded me
that a manatee was found
in the Wolf River harbor near my house.

Sad, I know!
That poor little thing.
I want to go toss him a cabbage.
I might. I have one. It's a rare occasion for us both.

Sadder still, Ron said,
"When they first heard about it, the authorities said,
'Manatee?? Noooo. Dead body? Probably."

To that sad-but-true cross-section, I said,
"Then that'd make it a casualtee,
or a fatalitee, instead."

Sunday, October 22, 2006

"Amelia Earhardt, Jimmy Hoffa, and my Sony Cybershot."

"I don't know where it went...it was right here on the floor of the car, right here by the maps... I don't know where it is...it's not in my purse... I don't know. I just had it..."

That's all I could say to Ron
when he asked me to produce the camera at the pet cemetery.
Oh no, dear God, no.
Not my sweet, beloved Sony Cybershot -- lost.
Where the hell it is at this exact moment, I have no idea
I have a Sony Cybershot-shaped hole in my soul right now.
What's left of my tattered, blistered soul anyhow. Boohoo.

Maybe I kicked it out of the car when I got out,
I told him, at that estate sale at Rosemark.

Ron scrunched his face up at me and said.
"How do you kick a camera out and not know you kicked it out?"

A virgin, I thought, to shit luck and certain disaster.

I scrunched my face back at him.
"What do you mean, how?
When you drag a dead leg out
of a Honda parked in a ditch on the side of a hill,
all you can think of while you are doing it is,
'don't fall over, don't fall over, don't fall over',

and it's really easy to lose focus."

That was the most beautiful house I have seen in a long, long while.
(I'd show you a photo, but y'know, no.)
Two-story and grand, with a green, winding staircase
running up the center as its twisted, green-planked spine.
But the house was damp, past stone-cold,
and the wooden floor felt spongey under me,
worn Oriental rugs obviously triaging a crisis together.
I had a nightmare a few weeks ago about a beautiful, rotting house
almost just like this. Remembering this blindly,
I chose my path carefully and hoped to God
I wasn't the first to fall through the floor into the spidery basement.
Not today. We're going for catfish, so I hear.

This house had to be a truly gorgeous thing
at its prime about 100-something years ago.
But now, it was comprised mainly of softened white beadboard
and a glowing blue-green, mutant, pulsing, jelly-like substance that
only I could see with my x-ray vision,
thriving and multiplying and teeming
in the cracks of the solid plaster walls yet aching 2 x 4s.
From the smell of the dampened wallpaper,
I'd have to guess this surely toxic mold
feasted and mutated over the years,
drawing its surely toxic strength
from a steady supply of mentholed, nicotine fumes.
"That's what got her, " I thought. "That poor, sweet thing."

Ok. Not everyone who dies is a sweet person. I just assume they are, in my mind. That's the first thing I think of when I go to an estate sale: Who died last, the husband or the wife? How did they go? Are they still alive, convalescing in a home? Maybe this is a good thing.
Painting ceramics. Playing cards. Thinking good thoughts.
Then that usually depresses me, so I assume the best and hope they both just moved to the country where they are quietly raising goats together in a smaller, more manageable house, one with solid floors and new walls, and things like that.

Looking around, I didn't see many things
that belonged to a man anymore.
Mostly, in the front rooms,
I'd seen pairs and pairs and pairs of white gloves
with tiny tea stains,
and afghans, and tiny size 5 1/2 shoes,
and Christmas ornaments and
carefully crocheted "women-stuff."
Mostly pink things embellished
with rhinestones whose silvering had eventually worn away
and turned to clear glass instead
held down with dulled, metal claws.
"But pink is pink; pink is cheery."
I recite to myself over and over and keep walking,
like whistling in the dark.

I weaved around to the kitchen because
that's where I always end up
especially in these houses.
That's the heart of a home to me anyway.
I searched the refrigerator for a pulse.
There were a bunch of magnets,
mostly from a propane delivery service,
with nothing under them anymore,
a coloring book page
was hanging on the front of the refrigerator
with "We love you, Nani, me and jeff too"
and a bird scribbled in with blue circles,
a cloud scribbled in with brown,
and only one photo left of a tanned grandfather kissing the cheek
of a wide-eyed grandchild in her Easter dress.
She had no idea, but he did.
The photo had a digital imprint in the bottom-right corner dated 2003.

"Someone really liked chickens,"
Hannah said as she poked a glass rooster in the beak.
"My grandmother collected glass hens and chickens like this," I told her, taking up for the weird chicken obsession with little or no explanation best I could, "I have no idea why. Must've been the thing to do at the time, I guess."
Then I wondered what people would be saying about my crap
if and when it were up for sale one day.

"How many cameras does a person need?" they'd ask.
"Would you take 25 cents for this cup full of rosaries?"

"Who's 'ELO' and 'Pete Shelley'?"
"Is this a voodoo doll?"

"I love this house!" Mamie breathlessly mouthed to me,
as she easily bounced the floorboards in the foyer,
rattling and pinging the sitting room windows
enough to make me see broken windowpanes and spiders.
I could see in her eyes that she'd already rennovated this place
from the peeling, gingerbread eaves to the ooey, gooey basement.

"Only $134,000," I said, taking a flyer from the bookcase
moved temporarily to the porch. Temporarily. I hope.

Back in the Honda on the hill,
"My sinuses are goin' crazy now...are yours bothering you?"
Ron asked, pinching the bridge of his nose and twisting his face up a bit.
Mamie said, "Yeah, I can't breathe now. I took my Claritin-Ds
this morning and should be spittin' cottonballs by now.
Think it was that house? I could fix that house."
"Oh, ya think? All I can taste is old books and musty mousetraps now," I said, "Yeah, it's definitely the house. But damn, wasn't it beautiful?"

"Yeahhhh, it was beautiful," she sighed, a million miles away.
"I could do things with that house. That is a crime how they've let it go.
I just loved those bouncy floors!"

There ya go, I thought. That's the spirit - true optimism. Never give up and never say die. And, you're crazy. But it's that rare, good caliber of crazy that I admire. Not that garden variety howling freakshow crazy or other.

Speaking of: My camera, my camera, my camera...

To put this into perspective, I lost my job the other day, and not one tear. But last night, I cried my eyes out over my poor, lost Sony. Thank God I'd transferred all the photos from it the day before. Honestly, thank you, God. Oh, and thank you for all that other stuff, too.

"Who wants to go to the pet cemetery?"
"Me me meeee," Hannah kicked the back of Ron's carseat. "Wait. Why are we going to the pet cemetery," it dawned on her after the words "cool" and "cemetery" vaporized from her fresh, non-toxic, bouncy little mind.

"So I can take a picture of Kitty Kat...'s garden."
Ron didn't feel like explaining cremation to Hannah.

"Oh. Ok. And after that, catfish," she said.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Get back to where you once belong.

Poor, poor Paul McCartney and that crazy Ms. What's-Her-Leg...

Oh, admit it. She asked for that one.
At least I didn't say
she got down on her knee and begged for it.
I don't feel like universally jinxing myself that badly.
Although I did see some unspeakable photos
of her doing something very similar.

remember that
"swab yer cheeks for DNA" project I did?
Just got an update email, and, yes,
my large group deserves
more attention and exploration.
I'm game, let's go...
where's that dang FTDNA kit number...


My name is Rebekah and I am the administrator
of the of the H mtDNA Haplogroup project. I am contacting you
because your mtDNA test results match the low resolution,
HVR1, results of one of the H Project's members.
I would like to invite you to join the mtDNA Haplogroup H project.

Haplogroup H represents much of Europe yet the amount
of demographic detail available from scholarly journals
is still limited. Many of us feel that this large group deserves
more attention and exploration. The project is working towards
finding the geographic origins of the H sub-clades and
discovering our shared heritage.

You will need your FTDNA Kit ID and User Code.

Participation in the project is completely free and
results are public. Whether you join or not please
contact myself or the project Co-administrator,
Laura, with any questions or concerns you
might have about the H clade.

Thank you for your time.

Rebekah A Canada
H Project Administrator

This project is just fascinating to me.
You know you care, you do.
If you don't care,
I may swab you to see if you're made out of wood.

Monday, October 16, 2006

You smell that?

I smell sweet, middle-class roses
blooming on a chilly October morning
right outside my own plantation shutters.

Pink cream, silky softness, with ruby-red scalloped edges,
I remember why I planted them now.
Because they are rich and authentic and beautiful
and not a belabored, unnatural thing.

I sit back every year and watch them bud and blossom
more beautiful than before, year after year;
the roots reach deeper strengths below them,
and the blooms grow sweeter and more divine.
I structure them with prunings, strip away
their spotty leaves to encourage new growth,
and give them all they need without shading them
too much or too long.
And then my favorite part,
I step away and let them work.
Because they know what to do
best for all the rosebuds on the bush.

By the time I turn around and notice again,
they take my breath away with all they have become,
so cleanly fully-nourished and fully-bloomed.
Delicately rimming the scalloped edges,
the watery beads collected over the night
reflect rainbows and refract prisms,
into the purest liquid jewels.
Each rose sits atop a stem, gently swaying
under its own shimmering crown.

With a hot cup of tea, touch of cream and honey,
a strong hug and two kisses from a good man and husband,
I can see every leaf on the cherry tree now.
Finally, again.
Backgrounded by a
velvety bright blue canvas and
over-inflated, cartoonishly grand clouds
that always make me smile from
the inside out.

For once in a long time on a Monday,
my smile is not forced, and my sigh is content,
and I will not miss the throat-clutching fumes of
purple Kool-aid on a Monday morning.

I will worry about the people
being handed the Dixie Cups, however.

When people tell you to believe in
someone you know is wrong,
remember that nothing feels better
than being yourself,
on your own,
growing a real work of art
at home where the real flowers bloom.

And no, I didn't PhotoShop in the sparkle.
God did.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Oh, great.
Not only have I spilled my PG Tips,
but now Scrotum V. Detoxed
is also currently offering us all an invitation to

th e wo'rlds best phar macy...

I just don't know what to believe anymore.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

A friendly message of hope
from Budd Colon,
CEO/VP and Chairman of Spam
at C.L.I.C.K.H.E.R.E.com:


If your love affairs leaves you and your chick displeased
you have to take some immediate action
with our inexpensive medical drugs.

Get hold of them at our online shop.
We also price highly your coolness and anonymity."

Thankfully, someone who values my coolness and anonymity.

And Puppet J. Snakebites
is currently offering us all an invitation to

th e wo'rlds best phar macy

just in case you're interested in ruining your credit history
and a few major organs while you're at it.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Note to myself: You totally forgot.

That's why you stopped leaving the IM running idle at night.
It grosses you ouuuuut before your coffeeeeeeeee.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Trivia Night update:
Big Jim Slade wins.

When I say things like "we won first place",
I actually mean Ron, Susan, and who(m)ever else is present
with a real education and working knowledge.
But I do know one thing for sure:
I always enjoy tater tots and bar napkins.
Most days, that is really all I need to know.

"What President is pictured on the $100,000 bill?"
I didn't even know there was a $100,000 bill.

"What bird can fly upside down?
It depends on how hard you throw them, I think.

When the first round categories were announced,
I thought I might be able to actually play this time,
being that they started with the topics "Beer" and "Candy",
and that I'm high on steroids for my whinging, aching back.
(New and improved pain
with 157% blinding pinched nerve action!)

"In America, beer from the tap is spelled 'draft',
but how is it spelled in the UK?"

Isn't it sad I got excited that I knew,
and that everyone at the table pretended for my sake that they didn't?


"What insect is pictured on the front of Bit O' Honey bar?"

Again, it just made me heady to get off to such a strong start.

But that rich mixture of tots, napkins, pens, meds, caffeine,
sugar, and inexpensive bourbon,
just set me up for over-confidence and
"The Mighty Fall" with the question:

"Over 200 years ago, three immigrants named
(someone, someone, and Gustav)
opened up the first major department store in New York City
(something tater tot something).
What was the name of that department store?"

Hint 01: It's not Macy's,
and Hint 02: Stick with your husband's gut reaction,
unless you enjoy unnecessary guilt.

But again, with a pen in one hand and a tot in the other,
I will always have a good time. And on steroids?
Where do I begin my newfound love for Prednisone...

Let me get back to you with that later,
after I finally accept that I cannot fly,

don't remember much of yesterday
except for bright lights, the vacuuming of walls
and the spit-shining of floors,

and after I stop triple-checking to see
if I'm wearing my skin inside out.
It's a good ride.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

"God's Fudgefactor"
or His "Phonin' One In On a Friday" Idea:

The Virginia Oppossum, or The RatBatMouseKitten?

What's the difference, what's the use?

It's just a thought.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A happy song for you today:
"Fidelity" by Regina Spektor.

Monday, October 02, 2006

St. Patrick's Day Jell-O:
I have no idea what I was thinking either.

However, never underestimate the versatility of green hi-liters.
Easily, this could've been fluorescent blue, pink, yellow,
or orange instead.

Somewhere, deep down, I'm sure it really matters.