Thursday, July 31, 2008

Living memory . . .

When older family members pass away, their unrecorded memories of family events pass with them. My brother sent an email to us in which he asked that memories of early family life be written down and circulated within the family circle. Then he recorded some of the memories of our parents which he had acquired during his own childhood and teen years.

What a brilliant idea. I added to his email record in the same vein using a different (but readable) color for my additional text and passed it on.

I included a cousin with whom we grew up when I sent the email traveling on in its quest for family memory. A great deal of what we wrote was told to us by our mother. Some was personal experience. And, believe it or not, she told him some things that she didn't tell me. Or, more probably, he remembered them and I did not.

I can hardly wait to get the other replies which add to the story . . .

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Believe your eyes?

Earthquake coverage is in saturation mode on CNN. It seems there is much to be thankful about. I remember asking my mother years ago if we ever had earthquakes here. She said we don't. I took that as a fundamental truth for years. I am sure she thought it was.

A few years ago, when I was sitting in the dining room and staring vacantly at a glass of water, (trying to wake up) the water rippled. It just shivered. It was as if someone had vibrated the table, but no one had.

Next morning, the newspaper said we had felt the faint effects of a 'quake. I felt nothing. But I saw it.

Close enough . . .

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Getting better, slowly . . .

Last night I forgot to sleep with my head at the foot of the bed. I was reading a mystery and pushed the lights-out timing envelope so far that I just put down the book, hit the switch, and conked out. I did this pushing because I was reading near the end and close to finding out whodunit. Usually, since J has been coughing, I switch down to the foot after lights out so I don't hear every little clearing of his throat. Not unsympathetic, you understand, but I like to get some sleep, every night.

This morning, I discovered the reason, all over again, why I do that while he is recovering. Sniff. Hack.

At least I was up first in the bathroom . . .

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Connections . . .

S has a picture of a tiny, black-toed, hatchling on her blog. Could it be that the dog which lives below S's sister might like to keep some chickens company? Similar to transportation to Australia in the olden days. Just a thought.

The new horse, Shenandoah? Cleveland? No, Savannah, I went and looked. That horse might be looking for someone who wouldn't try to change the equine pecking order. Someone Savannah, herself, might boss around or keep company. Just another thought.

Tape the yapping and play it back at night? Say 3 a.m.? Forget that evil thought. Wars have been started for less.

I have been reading too much Lee Child and am beginning to channel Jack Reacher. Can you tell?

Aside to 01 doc, Jack Reacher is the new Travis McGee. At least in my opinion . . .

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Well, later'll do . . .

We postponed the trip to Outback for health reasons. J is not feeling quite 100% due to an upper respiratory infection. The Dr. gave him some good meds and he feels better when he takes them. No operating heavy machinery for him, however.

Last night, he slept better, too. The whole world did, I think.

The cat must feel the difference, too. She has slept all day except for trips to the pantry which is her dining room.

Yawn . . .

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Looking up . . .

Threats of rain today but we went to the grocery store, anyway. No rain. Overcast. It was ten degrees cooler today, but the humidity might have allowed a venturesome fish to have some beach time. I am ignoring the weather reports and just looking up when I need to go somewhere. I am just a accurate, locally, as the weather person.

Right now, there are three umbrellas on my car's rear seat. Two of them were left inadvertently and one is a permanent resident. There may be another short one waayyyy underneath the front seat as a short one is missing. That would bring the count up to four that I am taking for rides.

I finally remembered to cash the tiny checks from TastyKake at the bank. Collectively they would buy about a gallon and a half of gas. We were given reimbursement for some unopened packages that had developed internal mold. The dates on the packages were in code, which the representative decoded for me. I think we will pass, thanks, in the future. Mold really got my attention.

I do miss them though. The un-moldy ones were delicious . . .

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

All star consequences . . .

We are usually up early. Mew has a morning routine of being brushed and combed as soon as she sees us, which is then followed by her breakfast being served right away.

Last night, the All Star game tied and went extra innings. I caved in and went to bed about 12:45 and J came even later. We still did not know who won when we got up this morning.

Because we woke late, Miss Mew's routine was shot all to, I mean, was interrupted. She was ticked at the world, refused to cooperate and finally ate under protest.

Having such a late breakfast was her idea of a desperate hunger strike . . .

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

One nevah know, do one?

Every once in a while, the number lock gets struck. This can set me up to log in as someone not known to the free world, much less Blogger. Who could be doing the deed? It's a "UR doin' it rong" moment.

Today, the soft rain down is falling. Thunder rumbles distantly and our cat is sleeping through it all. She raised her head and looked at me accusingly. She thinks we humans are in charge of the thunder thing. If we fail to perform adequately, she will disappear, as I have mentioned before. I gave her three soft strokes between the ears and told her to go back to sleep.

Sometimes, she does listen to me . . .

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Renewal and expiry dates . . .

This evening, we celebrate A's birthday at Zeta's and M's home. We will be one fewer this time as David N. has his military obligation calling him back. I think. He may still be in country, elsewhere and I have not heard.

The birthday person chooses the menu. Except for the barbecue which is everyone's favorite, there are different items on the agenda. All good, though. A also likes the things we all appreciate. So did S, last week.

As I said, July is a month of renewals for quite a few of us. There are days, though, when it seems as if I have already passed my expiration date . . .

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Out of the mailer . . . or not?

Back when we were having confused issues and lengthy wrangles with ATT and its cross pollenation of our telephone accounts, we were sent a free upgrade to our DSL account as an apology of sorts. The modem is still sitting in the mailer in which it arrived. I do suspect that *free* services and merchandise are worth what they cost.

Our present DSL speed is fine with me. Still, I wonder.
Am I wrong in this case?

Friday, July 11, 2008

All better . . .

This morning, a screen popup told me that ZoneAlarm had a fix for the problem with the Windows download encountered yesterday. Did I want to download it? Why not? I could only get into more trouble.

It downloaded and installed, requiring a restart. Now I am running in stealth mode again and feel invisible.

That's a powerful feeling . . .

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Ready, Aim, Firewall . . .

This morning, the internet was not accessible from this infernal machine. I spoke with our ISP and discovered that if we turned off our firewall, we could see the 'net. Not a good solution, but a tiny hint, almost a clue.

Trial and error led me to discover several things: The newest security download from MS Windows causes problems for ZoneAlarm users. Accepting automatic downloads from MS Windows: bad idea. Formerly, they had to ask me for permission and I used to evaluate each download. I got lazy. No more lazy for me.

The ZoneAlarm site has a couple of easy fixes displayed on their home page. I had already found one of these fixes for myself. Otherwise? I would still be trying the toll free number and grinding my molars.

The automated voice at the toll free number for ZA said that there were no free lines, so call later. I would guess they have an overloaded system. This is a definite Catch 22. You have to find a fix before you can get to the site with fixes displayed.

Hello? Microsoft? You out there making friends, again?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

You wanna be brushed?

Going down Sunset (72 Street), we crossed 72 Avenue which reminded me that we needed to go to the vet (whose office is thirty blocks down the Avenue from where we were) and get more ProPlan for Mew. It is always a chancy thing whether they have the flavor she will eat willingly, or not. We try not to let her run so closely to being actually out that it is serious if the vet doesn't have hers.

She has no clue that there is not a plentiful supply at all times. It appears in her bowl like magic, in the morning, right after she gets groomed. She loves being brushed and I can sneak some combing in, too, while she is fixated on the brush. As far as she knows, being brushed produces the food. She has a strange vision of comb plus brush equals two bowls, one of which is fresh water.

She thinks her name means come and get fed . . .

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Listen, whatcha think . . .

S is our computer guru. In fact, he chose the components and built the PC being used to write this. When they come up with laptops that you can build and customize yourself, we will turn to him again and wait in line for his help.

Wouldn't that be a good idea?
I mean interchangeable components, from no matter what brand, for a laptop. I know some PCs are proprietary but all laptops seem to be.

Gateway, Dell, Toshiba, HP, etc., are you listening? I know, I know, the proprietary laptops are sold with differing levels of peripherals, but they are pretty much a menu of expensive choices. We need would like to be able to cobble together our own laptops (say, using choices from without breaking the bank . . .

Monday, July 7, 2008

Announcing . . .

S was the center of attention as he opened his Garmin GPS, a combined birthday gift from the assembled group. Thereafter, the GPS was the center of his own fascination as he set it up, chose a language (he decided after some consideration that English would do), a time zone, etc. He had to wait, however until after the delicious barbecue lunch was devoured and the table cleared before the time was declared to open the gift. He was requested to read every word of the various cards aloud. Being thorough, he included the envelopes and logos from the backs of the cards.

Zeta and M can seat ten in their dining room and there were exactly that many of us around the table. We had a joyous time.

David N. came but he had to leave right after lunch to attend his sister's wedding. Actually he had to pick her up. We made sure he left on time. J, Big Ed, and I had not seen him for nine years. He had been a member of the same scout troop as S and even lived with Zeta and M during some of his high school years. He has been in the Army for nine years now.

S is now emblety-emp years old, which does not seem possible.

July is a busy birthday month for Zeta and M:
1) S.
2) A.
3) M.
4) M's twin bro D.
5) their mother Mrs. A.
6) me.

This is an official announcement.
I am not doing my personal birthdays any longer. A cake, a card and a "have a nice one" will do, thank you. And I mean that wholeheartedly. Pay attention, y'all!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Waiting for . . .

At present, I am in M's son's new condo, waiting for their new furniture to be delivered. I have their laptop and am in some kind of heaven. Just in case, I brought a magazine, three books, soda, coffee, snacks, and lunch.

J had received a tote bag from the Colonial Williamsburg people. I filled it up. It looks as if I am moving in.

There is a screened balcony off the living room which is shaded by two big Oak trees. It is like being in a tree house and so peaceful. Past the trees, I can see a pool which is a mighty lure in this weather.

You never know down here. Yesterday, I went out to the post office and do some other errands. The sky was low and distantly threatening rain. Those clouds rushed together and formed a white squall which stayed for a while. The car and I crept home and waited together for it to pass.

Good thing the furniture wasn't scheduled for yesterday. It would have had an upstream swim to get here . . .

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Modern tech . . .

Almost asleep, nearly out. Vaguely thought that I heard a cell phone cry that its battery was dying. Decided to ignore it. J asked me what that sound was. Groggy and one eye still shut, I went to find it. I thought it was in the dining room. No. It refused to make another noise so I decided call and see if it was more awake than I was.

There was a faint sound of music from behind me. The phone, safely in my handbag, and next to my side of the bed, mocked me by going silent. I had, however, echo-located it. By now, both eyes open, vertical and moving, I was extremely awake.

Next time, that little silver baby can just cry . . .