Blogging About Blogging

I get weary of the blogger angst that people publicly put themselves through. It's really pretty simple: if you don't like blogging, then delete your blog. And if you do enjoy blogging, then blog proudly and quicherbichin'. There's no shame in it and people really don't like witnessing your public self-flagellation. All that tells me is that you secretly detest bloggers, but you're afraid not to be part of some imagined club. And that tells me that you have some unresolved issues hanging over from high school or something...


Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Nettl's comment to the earlier post reminded me that I'd like to name some people who were key in helping us get the cat out of the storm drain this morning, where she spent a wet and scary night. I want to name these people personally "out here" where the search bots will find them.

Thanks to Officer Jeremy Rager of the Stillwater Police Department for taking the extra time and care not only to help us, but for staying with our girls late at night for two hours while they tried to coax the cat out of the pipe. He also drove by throughout the night, checking on her until Nettl could call someone for help this morning.

Thanks also to Tony and Colton of Patriot Sewer & Drain for springing the prisoner this morning, and not charging us.

Thanks to The Cat Clinic of Stillwater for taking good care of our cat, and special thanks to Shana Watkins for calling the sewer and drain company and giving them Nettl's cell phone number.

No thanks to the Night Auditor at the City of Stillwater utilities department. Not only did he not send anyone out to check on the situation, he also gave us misinformation about the grates being "welded down" when they aren't (we could have gotten her out last night, Numnutz!), and he didn't offer to help us by telling us who we should call. Also, no thanks to the City for not protecting the pen end of that pipe with a screen or a grate. I found it by tripping in it. Raspberries to you!

You all rock, except the night auditor at the Stillwater utilities department, who didn't care if a defenseless animal lived or died, or that our kids would have to listen to her as she died in that god-awful hole, mistakenly thinking that there was nothing anyone could do.


Feeling Sad & Helpless... and an Update

Tonight around 10:00 when Heather came home from work, she heard our cat, Lowrider, meowing from a storm drain at the end of our cul-de-sac.

Following the echo of her meowing in the dark with only a pen flashlight, we walked around the open field-like back yards, looking for the exit and found it about 100 yards from the drain. It's a pipe about 6" in diameter. Heather lay down and called the cat for about 10 minutes to no avail. A neighbor came out and we tried to open the grate, but it's welded shut. Nettl called 911 and spoke to one of her former co-workers when they both worked at The Cat Clinic, and she sent an officer out to check the situation. The officer called the city who was, basically, no help at all...

Mystery of the Recent Comments Widget Uncovered

Okay people. Listen up. Those of you who have been pulling your hair out because your Recent Comments haven't been working, I figured it out for you. The problem is, the host of the script is kaput. Most of you probably got your widget at Blogger Templates. Stop doing that. Remove that one and replace it with the one you can get at Blogger Buster instead. It's the exact same script, served up by a different host, and it works like a charm.

So far, no correct guess on Famous Places No. 2...

The question has been asked if I was aware that the bottom of the header of this new template curves slightly upward, creating an uneven effect. Yes. The header is supposed to look like an hand-cut scrap of paper. Thanks for your patience while I continue to tweak things around here!


Famous Places No. 2

Ah, another famous place for you to identify. This time my hints will not be so easily wrenched from me!

Hint #1:
A weak foundation of 24-karat gold.

Hint #2:
Blonde ambition meets the family -- in more ways than one

UPDATE (7/29/08 - 6:30 pm):
Well, The Villacious One got it once again. Hey, there's no nepotism happening here. Take it out on her, not me!

The correct answer is: it's the house that Marilyn Monroe owned, and in which she died, in 1962.

12305 5th Helena Dr.
Brentwood, CA 90049
N 34° 0533 W 118° 478


A Solid Story and Solid Acting

First off, I want to explain that this is not a review or a critique, just a few thoughts about the movie.

I came to The X-Files a little later than a lot of people. I'd watched the very first show and wasn't all that impressed, but much later, in 2001 or 2, Joel showed me the X-Cops episode and I was hooked. I mean, how could you not love Steve and Edy? I confess, though, that I'm not an X-ie, or whatever they might call themselves, but I love a good story and The X-Files had some great ones.

The X-Files: I Want to Believe is just that. A good story. With the pounding noises of Batman's special effects booming through the wall, our movie was low-key by comparison, and that's fine with me. This is not the movie at which you'll see glazed-eyed teens staring slack-jawed at the screen, kids whose imaginations have been slaughtered by more noise, bigger car crashes and wilder computerized effects. It's a movie with a story. And that may disappoint some of the show's fans.
"this movie is really about the eternal balancing act of love and work, of passion for a goal or quest and passion for a man or woman----this is mulder and scully i'm talking about. this partnership plays out in a emotional way while they are tring to solve this freaky (my kids' word) mystery that may unravel and unravel them. the case pushes mulder away from scully but also toward her, love and work impossibly intertwined until a choice must be made."
(from David Duchovny's blog, The Duchovny Files, found on the film's site, linked above)

I was expecting more paranormal content and was a little disappointed, but if I say anything more about that I'll be giving some things away. I liked it despite my dashed expectations.

One suggestion. If you go see it, resist the temptation to get up and leave as the credits begin to roll. Sit through it and keep in mind that one of the production mainstays and writers of the TV episodes was Vince Gilligan.



The Truth Will Be Revealed

Joel, Micah and I are going to go see the X-Files movie this afternoon. I'll review it, but I won't give anything away.


"Who Am I?" No. 2

"Today, I am a major celebrity, although my popularity has slipped some in the past several years. I was married to a beautiful actress who got more famous than I for a while. My ego couldn't take that, I guess, and we're now divorced. I have starred in over 60 films and I was once arrested for disturbing the peace and assault. Who am I?"

Damn it, Ville's right again, so if you want to guess, don't read the comments.

Another cookie Ville, or maybe you'd like a r-r-r-rubber biscuit?


The Years of My Life in Music

There's a meme going around in which you name your favorite album from each year you've been alive. As a musician this is irresistible for me. The older albums I name are those that I either remember from my parents' massive LP collection, or that I heard later on. I must also add that these are "popular" albums and not Classical. That would be another list altogether.

WARNING: This may get pretty long by simple virtue of the fact that I'm older than dirt...


I Need a "Thinking For Dummies" Book

I've been combing the web the past few days for my new template, which I'll install at the end of summer and which will stay put. (It will, I tell you. It will!) I finally found one I really like and that I can modify to suit the look I have in my mind, but I want a very customized look and Blogger Beta isn't helping me. I understand most of the new coding now, but there are just those few things that confoozle me. Well, only two where the new template is concerned. If you have mastered these, or know someone who has, please let me know, okay?...


Famous Places No. 1

My friend Kelly at Byzantium's Shores regularly posts a feature called, Unidentified Earth, for which he posts a Google Earth image and asks his readers to identify it. I always enjoy having a look, although I've only posted my guess twice and got it right only once (the image was of the ruins at Tintagel in Corwall, England). Well, he's a lot more intellectual and Earth conscious than I am, so I don't think he'll find my homage to his feature threatening or competitive in the least. He's not that kind of guy anyway...


B.U.I. *

* Blogging Under the Influence

Whatever you do today, take a few minutes to visit RW's blog and read this short story. As some of you know, I just adore this quasi-misanthropic curmudgeon, and I especially love his writing. I think this is one of the best things he's done, although he'll probably get pissed off that I said that, and won't share his absinthe with me.


The Oldest Joke Unearthed

The oldest recorded joke in the world has been found. It was told 4,600 years ago to Pharaoh Snefru by the magician Djadjamankh.

"How do you entertain a bored pharaoh? You sail a boatload of young women dressed only in fishing nets down the Nile and urge the pharaoh to go catch a fish."

Okay, so it loses something in the translation and the passage of time, but I doubt that old Pharaoh soiled his sarong over it.



I was cruising Kay's Thinking Cap this morning and saw that she has a Blogoversary button. "I want one!" I said, thinking that mine had passed a week ago. But when I checked, I saw that it's on Thursday!

Six years ago I started a blog that I created and maintained in Frontpage. I was really regular about blogging, so having no permalinks and having to spend an entire day at the end of each month archiving manually, I decided to move to Wordpress. I was there for a couple of years, but got weary with their downtime, slow page loading and complicated coding. I moved to my current Blogger home, which is where I'll stay. Unfortunately, I lost hundreds of posts somehow and salvaged only five posts for the years 2002 and 2003. ARG!...


The Hands Have It

Have you noticed this gesture on TV shows and commercials? I assume that its purpose is to make the speaker appear relaxed and confident, but it makes me be weird. First of all, no one makes this gesture in real life. Second, it's only one in a predictable series of four gestures that makes them look like stilted automatons.

The series usually goes something like this:


It Was Beavis & Butthead Kind of Day

It took some furniture-shifting and working out of various patch cords, but we made it through five straight hours of Beavis & Butthead. We don't have a TV in our living room, so we brought one downstairs, hooked the speakers up to it, and moved my wingback to a viewing potision. With nachos, pizza rolls, chicken nuggets and a pony key of Sp├Ąten Pils, a good time was had by all.


Our Saturday

What Nettl and the girls will be doing in Tulsa:

What the guys and I will be doing at home:
Any questions?


Did You Hear the One About...

...the guy in Florida who stole a Eucharist wafer and was charged for perpetrating "a hate crime against the Body of Christ"? Obviously, kidnapping a disk of water, flour and vegetable shortening is something to get all worked up over. Oh, and we can sleep at night again; the kidnapper returned his hostage, apparently unharmed, after receiving numerous email threats.

Native Americans, Jews, Gays, African Americans, and millions of other murdered victims must be relieved.


I Don't Wanna!

I'm probably just tired from all of last week's work on our bedroom. I can't say that I feel bad, particularly, I just feel kind of blah. It doesn't help that it's a gray day -- which I like, actually -- and that the house is very quiet -- which I also like.

I have to go out and get groceries; I don't wanna!
I need to do laundry because there are no clean towels or washcloths; I don't wanna!
I have to get to work on websites; I don't wanna!
I have to take care of all the crap on the landing (crap that was in our room and needs to find new places; I don't wanna!
I feel like crawling back into bed; yeah, I wanna...


Fire in the Sky

Last night after dinner we headed over to Boomer Lake (a mile from where we live) for the yearly "Boomer Blast" fireworks show. The Lions Club hosts this display every year and the entire city is invited to enjoy it free-of-charge. At twilight the grassy banks fill up with families and friends who either bring coolers and lawn chairs, or who simply sit on the ground, some with blankets and some not. We were of the not variety...


Kindred Spirits

I have something to confess to you. I love B.E. Earl. No, not that way, but I love him in a weird, twisted kind of way all the same. Not only does he really like, befriend and champion lesbians, he also likes to drink himself stupid and he has fart humor. In honor of the 4th of July he posted this link. I just had to steal it, and to be sure he didn't get mad, I figured I had to make this confession.

Happy 4th everyone! You too, Earl. If you lived closer I'd invite you over for drinks on the veranda. If any of you Stillwater people want to drop in today, please feel free. We'll be going out to Boomer Lake for the fireworks later tonight, too. Maybe we'll see you there. We always sit on the west bank. Call my cell if you're there!


The Reveal

One last picture. Nettl bought the bed with her stimulus check. We've decided the glazed stripes just aren't necessary. All this stemmed from me wanting glazed stripes; now I won't even be doing them. That just busts me up. Wish you could see the lighting without the camera flash, because it's so soft and golden. Man, I'm tired. Time for me to start the weekend.

Calling Dr. Crack-in-the-Back...

It was only 15 years ago that I painted my mother's living room, hall, and dining room in one day. Then, the next day I painted my living room, bedroom, and office. I don't remember being all cripped up afterward, but that was then and this is now, and this is the result of yesterday's project: to paint one lousy wall. I haven't even gotten to the glazing yet, and my back is in agony. See new curtains and bed linens. See new chair. See Steph sitting in new chair taking Darvocet.


With Roller in Hand

First, I have work to do, you see. I have to get some mock-ups out to a couple of clients, then I'll get my butt up and begin this project.

After uploading my last entry, I went out to get a duvet set that Nettl and I saw a couple of weeks ago at Belk. It's in the same style and color as the one I linked to yesterday, except that instead of being over $1000 for the duvet alone, I got a nearly $300 set for... (wait for it)... $80! Man, I do loves me a good savings. It's a look I've dubbed, Nouveau Versailles. And of course, after saving so much on that, I was able to go get curtains at a real bargain. "What the hell?" I thought to myself. "Might as well get the paint, too." So I did. And the primer, the glaze (for the stripes), the roller pan, rollers, cutting brush, level, blue tape, etc. After I get today's obligations taken care of, I'll get cracking on our room. I'll try to remember to take pictures to show the progress.