Monday, November 30, 2009


I got myself a new cell phone. I know I said months ago (on this blog) that I wanted one with all the bells and whistles. What I actually got was the new version of the phone I already had.

It might have some sort of GPS application that's new.

I'm only just realizing how portable the college-age generation considers communications to be. No matter what they seek in a given moment, they expect it to be available with a few finger flicks. Directions, data, trainings, quotes—-I can't imagine what stepping into a library must feel like in an era when primary-source research seems almost unknown.


Today is my and Vic's 18th anniversary. We had a lovely meal and came home to the Patriots' game. The team had better do well.

Ooh, they just scored a touchdown!

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Another cool video, courtesy of the Daily Dish, via 3Qd:

The decline of empires should cover a much longer time frame, of course, and should incorporate the growth of new empires. But, isn't it fascinating to see what happens in the 1960s?

Is it that the Sixties represent a change of mind in the way that the Enlightenment did? Is it the rise of disposable plastics? I just think it's fascinating.

November Glass

On Thursday morning this week, I went glass picking. I hit my favorite beach on Rocky Neck. I could only spend 20 minutes, but I collected a good bit of glass. Not much of it was great, but some of it was kinda nice.

This morning, Vic and I glassed for about 2 hours. We took the dinghy over to Ten Pound. Lots of fat old and interesting pieces! We each found a partial bottle top in blue. Vic found a bright pink shell, which is visible in the colander.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


I mean this when I say it: I cried when I watched this video. Not in sadness, and not in joy. More at the spirit and the infectiousness of dance.
(Thanks to the Daily Dish for bringing the video to my attention.)

I know from my friends growing up that it sucks to mature as a "different" sort of person. That the guy in pink has not only come to terms with those difficulties, but also brought the simple happiness of self-expression to his fellow citizens in this way... "Hurry up, and bring your juke-box money!"


I got my hair cut on Thursday. I wanted a particular style. I printed out three pictures of other people wearing it. I brought with me three old pictures of myself wearing it. I found online instructions for hairdressers to create this cut and printed those out, too.

You know what this paragraph is going to say. Of course, I did not get exactly the cut I wanted. The hairdresser didn't even read the instructions. What I got is, it seems, the haircut that Patricia Arquette now has, on Medium. Not a bad haircut. Just not the one I wanted (and not the one I did everything imaginable to pursue).

I did not realize at the time that it wasn't right because, just as at the end of any haircut I have ever gotten, the hairdresser poofed and producted and blew my hair dry. I don't do any of that at home. At the end of the appointment, I appeared to be Hilary Clinton when she stopped wearing headbands and ponytails and went with the starched head look.


I just created a survey form using Google. It was unbelievably easy, and I can see that software publishers aren't going to be happy. Many of the forms that Google offers are the whole reason why applications were developed.

The document underlying my survey form is a spreadsheet, rather than a database (a database could use memo fields). That could be a problem; I don't know if there's a size limit on a spreadsheet cell. We'll have to wait and see.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Outer Banks

I emitted a squeal tonight, clapping and bouncing in my chair. In a slide-show survey of storm damage on the Outer Banks, I saw Once Upon a Time (the house where we stayed this year) whole, apparently intact.

See #33! —- NOTE, the picture above is NOT from after the storm, but is instead ca. 2008. You have to use the link to see our home-away-from-home now. If you link, Once Upon a Time is in the lower left quadrant of pic 33, the first house entirely within the picture.

You may recall that I said, "I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that house," but I don't know that you know what a big deal this is. In the weekend storm, on the Outer Banks, 349 structures (mostly single-family homes) were damaged—-of which 81 were so damaged that they are not habitable. Another three are just plain gone, washed into the ocean.

The eradication of dunes has left numerous homes standing in the tidewater. Two motels sustained major damage; both were in Buxton, the town where Once Upon a Time is located. The house is within one block of those two motels.

Just imagine that had happened on our coastline! The affected Banks constitute only 50 miles of seashore.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


The morning glories persist in the garden. These pictures are some weeks old, however.

Green Glass

One of the things I discovered in Erie at the Sea Glass Festival is that some shades of green glass are rare: jade or emerald green, for example. I have long tried to segregate shades of green, but in the sorter you can see more than one shade in some of those slots.

I've also found another sea glass website (unbelievable that I had not found it previously, as I've so frequently done web searches on the tag 'sea glass'). Victor found it, in truth. There I discovered how one 'grades' sea glass. Jewelry-quality glass is considered to be a piece that is well frosted on all surfaces, with no chips.

Last Blooms

Pink and blue dominated my garden at the end of the season. Well, yellow actually dominated, but I'm tired of yellow blooms everywhere late in the season. In contrast, I'm in love with my blue mist shrub.

Sunflower Seeds

Victor cut off the heads of all his sunflowers. He put some on the pole of his bird feeder, and one in a bag in the basement. I wish he'd just let one collapse and be absorbed by the soil—-that's how we got a mammoth sunflower from seed, where I work.


Final blooms appeared during September and October, for the most part. The pink rose is still blooming this morning.

End of 2009's Food Garden

Pictures more than a month old at this point.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

2009's Bonus

I'm roasting my bonus today. Using a convection oven, it should take no more than 2 hours for all 12.4 pounds. Good practice with use of the convection option for the holiday!


The nor'easter is making it rain here today, but on Hatteras, it seems, it swallowed all the dunes. A woman who runs a B&B in Buxton, NC, says that she is, today, surrounded by water. She's feeling lucky, reporting that her neighbors' homes have water 2' deep.

We stayed right around that B&B in May, one block off Hwy 12, on Oramar Drive. Remember the pictures of the beach bridge that was being washed away in the space of a week? It was eroded by normal tides, nothing like this "Nor-Ida" event.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that house, aka Once Upon a Time, to emerge like something out of a fairy tale.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Joy (with Reservations)

Of course, I am very excited that the public option was included in the House bill. Not as robust as I would have liked, but it is present.

Wish Lieberman would unclench his buttocks and relax.


Tides come in, and tides go out. I'm wondering this weekend, which is wiser: Getting ahead of the tide, never getting wet; or plonking oneself down in the water, understanding that it's not going to be comfortable—-not during, not after...

I'm in a new class on adult learning. The prof recommends that we use journaling in problem solving. So I'm going to go do that.


Heard today that a change in meds was probably part of the grisly scene that unfolded at Mass Gen.

I work with people who are challenged by mental health glitches and emotional processing delays. I will say unreservedly, it takes great care and patience, careful introduction of changes, and endurance for fallout.

Even outpatient clinics need to take basic precautions--software firms and construction companies do, why not hospital psychiatric clinics?!?

WaPo Changeover?

According to (Glenn Greenwald), today's editorial page, Washington Post, featured "two former Bush officials, one former Reagan official, two right-wing politicians, a Fox News neocon, the CEO of America's largest oil and gas producer, a defender of the right-wing Honduran military coup leaders, and one liberal columnist." What the heck?