Monday, August 31, 2009

Wedding Anniversary


Next Thursday is our 44th wedding anniversary, can't believe it!  Really does seem like yesterday.  We're going to Cumberland Island which is an island about 7 miles offshore from St. Mary's, GA.  We're staying at Emma's Bed and Breakfast in St. Mary's and then spending the day out on the island.   We thought about spending the night on the island, but the only place to stay on the island is the Reynold's Plantation, Greyfield Inn, which runs $350-$500 a night. We actually considered this, I mean how many 44th anniversaries do you get, but the only place to eat is in their dining room and it required a coat and tie for Mac and a dress for me and they don't serve Bud Light, so we knew we probably wouldn't fit in.   So we found Emma's Bed and Breakfast in St. Mary's.
I have to make the ferry reservations for us to get to the island, that's the only way to get there, they strictly control the number of visitors and there are no cars except service vehicles allowed on the island.  
The island is wonderful, full of live oaks, wild horses, wild turkeys, ruins of a mansion, the gravesite of Lighthorse Harry (Revolutionary War General and father of Robert. E. Lee).  And one of the most beautiful seashores I've ever seen.
I can't wait.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fussy Eater


I did a survey on Facebook to list 5 foods I wouldn't eat and I realized that the hard part of the list was naming only 5, because I am such a fussy eater.  It would have been easier to list 5 things I'm willing to eat.  I've been this way since I was a kid.  My Mom use to make me eat whatever was on my plate, but that often took 3-4 hours so she stopped that, simply telling me that I didn't have to eat it but I couldn't have anything else to eat. 
As a child I wouldn't eat liver, cheese, fish, macaroni, anything in a cream sauce, milk  and for a long time strawberries.   Didn't like a lot of things my Mom  cooked but managed to eat them including all the meat that was always so well done it was like shoe leather----that's how my Dad liked his meat so that's how we all got it.  My Mom was a rather plain cook so it wasn't until I got older that I realized there were many more things I wouldn't eat.
When I met Mac he introduced to me to crab, rice, shrimp and calamari, none of which I would eat for years. As we traveled around the world I learned the word for chicken in about a dozen languages because I like chicken cooked about any way you can fix it.  You'd think being so fussy I wouldn't eat veggies, but I love veggies.  Right off hand I can't think of a single veggie I won't eat, with green peas and broccoli probably being my favorite.
Mac'll eat pretty much anything and when his Mother would come to visit she'd cook him a lot of the things I wouldn't.  As time went on I did learn to eat crab, shrimp, rice and calamari (if they're deep fried , otherwise they're too rubbery), but I still don't like liver, cream sauces, macaroni and cheese or milk.  I will eat a piece of cheese (swiss or monterey jack) but don't like cheese in or on things.  I've been known to order pizza with no cheese, there's just something about melted cheese that gross's me out.
I still don't  eat much fish, even though I know it's good for me.  If it's bland and doesn't taste fishy I'll eat it,  otherwise no.   I don't eat octopus, sushi, mussels, raw oysters, salmon, mahi-mahi or anything else in the fish family besides tuna and halibut.
I'm not crazy about Chinese food eitherbecause they're always trying to sneak weird things into it, but I love Italian, minus the cheese. 
There is no doubt that my favorite food is chocolate.  I've often said that I'd eat a '56 Chevy if it were covered in chocolate, I'd probably eat anything covered in chocolate.  Once had a dessert called "Death by Chocolate" and it was to die for.  Even ate chocolate covered ants once, but that's another story.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Miss Kitty

Miss Kitty is our cat, or more factually, we're the humans she owns.  She came into our house nearly 3 years ago.  She had been living at the local animal shelter for more than 6 months when we adopted her.  We had gone looking for a male cat, but she insisted that we take her home with us and within days had stolen our hearts and we hardly remember life without her.
She's a cat of many moods and like all Tabbies she's very smart.  Strong-willed, she knows how she wants her home to be run.  I'm allowed to play piano solo in the daytime, but in the evenings she expects to play duets with me.  






Bird watching is an obsession with her and she has recently discovered squirrels whom she assumes are simply really ugly cats. 





 Much of 
her spare time in the evenings is spent searching for bugs and spiders.  I don't know why we bother paying someone to come in  quarterly when she does such a good job. As she owns the house she pretty much lays anywhere she wants, boxes being her preferred location, but any port in the storm.  

She loves loud noises, which is truly unusual in a cat, and spends large parts of her day knocking things onto the floor so she can check out the sounds they make, the louder and more metallic they are the better.
She also enjoys ice.  The first summer she was here she would play with an ice cube and then fall asleep with her cheek on it.  She still likes to sit on the sink and bat cubes in to hear the sound they make.
Kitty has a large collection of mice that she rules with an iron paw and you will frequently hear them being batted about or see them whizzing through the air.  She loves for you to throw them to her so she cat bat them, she's amazingly athletic.







One of the things that she does that has always puzzled us.  She likes to sleep stretched out in front of the refrigerator, one of the hottest spots in the house.  Not a bad location in winter but uncomfortable in summer, but there she is, often with her friend tail.  Now I know that she knows that ice comes from there and she loves ice, but how can she stand the heat coming from under there.  She tries to stick her paw under there, has tried to stick her mice under there too, and all the time she's looking for something.  I use to wonder what she thought was under there, but now I've decided I'm better off not knowing!







Friday, August 28, 2009

Chickensaurus


Apparently a Canadian Palaeontologist, Dr. Hans Larsson, has decided that he can create a dinosaur by reverse-engineering or in other words  "devoluting" a chicken's DNA.
Chickens have been around about 65,000,000 years (since the Cretaceous era) and may be dinosaurs closest living relative.
Dr. Larsson,  who has spent years studying dinosaur bones,  says he wants to "flip" certain genetic levers during a chicken embryo's  development so he can reproduce  certain parts of a dinosaur's anatomy.  He says that his goal is not to hatch a dinosaur, but to show that birds are a direct descendant of dinosaurs.
One person suggested that all he'll get is an ugly giant chicken with teeth and that he's calling dibs on the drumstick.
But it would be wild if Jurrasic Park happened.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Live Oak Trees


One of the most beautiful features of living in our area are the Live Oak trees. Every where you go along the coast you see them.  The Live Oak is the state tree of Georgia and there's no wonder why, often covered in Spanish Moss they are magnificant.  Frequently growing 65-85 feet tall and living more than 200 years they are one of the wonders of Savannah.
There aren't any on our prop
erty but the neighborhood
 is full of them.
In the city of Richmond Hill there are a number of these majestic oaks and one of the finest stood near the Ace Hardware Store.  Stood that is until Saturday when we received our more than 4 inch drenching.  Lightning didn't hit it (though there was plenty of that) it was just that the ground was so drenched from the rain that day and all the previous week that the wind was able to split  it.  Only part of it is down so there hoping to saw  at least part of it and I'm hopeful too, I enjoyed seeing that tree each time we went to Ace.





Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Football Season


Another football season has rolled around, a season I use to look forward to eagerly.  I was a huge fan, even bought a tv that had screen within a screen so that I could watch 2 games at a time.  When we were stationed overseas I'd get up in the middle of the night to listen to games on the radio.  But those days are long gone.  I watch football in dispair. No more Stabler, no more Plunkett, no more defense that every team feared. My mighty team  who thrilled millions is beyond woeful. They're so bad they don't just suck (pardon my French), they blow.  I can't even watch them, it's too painful.   My only hope is that some day soon its owner will die peacefully in his sleep (I'm not completely heartless) and someone who understands the game, knows how to draft players who actually want to play for the team, knows what the West Coast Offense is, will buy the team.  Until then I'm just a sad, Raider fan who now follows the Colts and the Giants, really like the Manning brothers, I remember their poor father playing for the Saints and the fans wearing bags over their heads.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Dreams


I was reading Patrick Rothfuss's Blog (he wrote The Name of the Wind--a great fantasy book) where he was talking about a dream he'd  had, pretty funny.  And it got me thinking about dreams.
Scientists think we all probably dream (though many people deny they do),  in color about 85% of the time, with older people more apt to dream in black and white and more women than men dreaming in color.  I'd read somewhere that people who grew up without much tv or black and white tv were those who were more apt to dream in black and white.
Mac says he doesn't remember his dreams much and those he does remember are usually in black and white. Recently he remembered one that featured a hermit crab that was partly a crawdad (a symbol for me perhaps?).
 I always dream in color and usually remember most of my dreams at least for a short while.  Recurring dreams for me include: the ability to fly--a very common dream, being out and about without my shoes (never naked, just no shoes), surviving after a nuclear attack (too many atomic bomb drills while in school---duck and cover), and finding a treasure. 
Different dream books interpret these dreams in different ways, I just enjoy them, other than the bomb ones.  When I got my first pair of glasses as a young child I wanted to sleep with them on.  When asked why I said," So I can see my dreams better."

Monday, August 24, 2009

Jeans


When you're short and round it's next to impossible to find good looking jeans that fit. Notice I said good looking, you can always find long, baggy ones that you'll have to chop off and hem before you can wear them.  But there are d**n few jeans you can take off the rack and just wear.  And of course  I'm short waisted which makes the search even harder.  A number of years ago I stumbled across Gloria Vanderbilt Jeans.  Now with a name like that you'd expect them to be very expensive and designed for tall skinny models.  But truth be told they start at about $18.00 and have sizes to fit nearly any shape.  They come in short, medium, tall, petite, regular cut, skinny and stretch.  Actually all of her jeans have a bit of stretch in them.  That's what makes them great.  If you order a pair and they fit well and then you put on a few pounds, no problem, the jeans stretch.  And they don't lose their ability to stretch as they grow older.  I wear my Glorias until they fall apart and that generally takes about 5 years with me wearing them constantly.  Then I cut them off and make them into shorts and wear those until they finally dissolve in the washer.  I've had many a short, round lady come up to me and ask where I buy my Levi's and I always tell them I don't wear Levi's I wear Glorias.
You can find them at Beall's  or JC Penneys, Sears use to carry them but I'm not sure if they do any more.  I bought my first ones in the store and since then I just order online their sizes stay constant.  My daughter, who is even shorter than me, 4ft.10in. to my 5ft. loves them too.  I'd be lost, or naked, without my Gloria's.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Floods of Biblical Proportions


And God gave Noah the rainbow sign, no more water the fire next time.  Well I don't know about that because it rained yesterday, no, I mean it really rained!  During the week we'd gotten nearly 5 inches and then yesterday the heavens opened up and in less than 2 hours we got more than 4 inches of rain. Lordy it was coming down in sheets with thunder and lightning to match the deluge.
I looked out the window and saw that the lagoon had flooded into out yard and our boat was ready to leave, while our dock (on the right look carefully) was under water.  The plant I had sitting on it looked like it was getting ready to float away.  I called Mac and he waded out to the boat, the water was ankle deep half way across our yard, and pulled the boat back.  In the picture it is still sitting in water but not in danger of floating away.  My poor yard!  

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Back to School


Our county's kids went back to school a couple of weeks ago, and the surrounding counties have slowly started back too.  Only Chatham (Savannah) waits until September to start.  I'm a retired teacher (and I've finally stopped having nightmares---the worse one was where I was teaching a class of third graders how to smoke and drink), many of my friends are teachers or are looking for teaching jobs.  Bless their hearts, I was once an enthusiastic teacher, ready to save the world one child at a time, the slogan of one of my principals.
I taught for 14 years, 1 in Georgia and 13 in California.  The one year of teaching Kindergarten in Augusta, GA is still one of my happiest teaching memories.  I taught in an school that was probably 95.% African-American (though they were still called Blacks then) and poverty was the norm not the exception.  But they were amazing kids, eager to learn, discipline wasn't a problem, the parents were caring and helpful.  I was sorry to leave, but we were moving home to California and I was looking forward to teaching there, it had to be more progressive and innovative than Georgia.
I had known we'd eventually go home to California so along with my major in Early Childhood Education I had done a minor in Spanish figuring that would help me get a job there, and it did.  My first teaching job in California was a Bilingual Second Grade class.  Most of the children was of Mexican descent, some newly arrived (illegal) with no English, some had been born in California of Mexican (illegal) parents who spoke English and some good old regular kids.  I had an Aide (Lidia) who was a native Spanish speaker and between us we taught the class. 
After a couple of years in Second Grade I had a class I liked so much that I moved up to Third Grade with them, and then the next year I shared them with my husband Mac who was teaching 4th grade and we both did a 3/4 combo.  It was great.
I enjoyed the kids I taught, but not how we were supposed to teach them.  When I taught in Georgia we turned in lesson plans each week that included lessons based on the  core curriculum we were supposed to be covering.  In California no one turned in lesson plans, you taught what and how you wanted.  When I was given my books for my first class they included Spelling Books but I was told I didn't have to teach Spelling if I didn't want to.  We didn't teach phonics, it was all Whole Language.  In 3rd and 4th grade you didn't have to teach Time's Tables because memorization was a no-no.
Needless to say we were "educating" a generation that would not be able to read, write or do math.  Towards the end of the 90's the pendulum swung the other way and all the old fashioned things we had done in Georgia when I first started teaching were now "in".
The teachers hated it, no more Fun Friday when they ran videos and played games all day.  No more teaching thematically and the curriculum be damned.
I thought it was great, with Godzilla sitting on my desk, the classe's bathroom passes in an alligator's mouth and a drawer full of chocolate I had been teaching all along.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Singing in the Rain


Started out to do our walk today but it started raining so we thought we'd have breakfast first and then try again.  We usually walk before breakfast because if you wait too long it gets so hot you turn into a puddle of hard to define body parts.  So back home for coffee and to wait for sunshine.  Coffee drank, sun appeared and off we went only to get absolutely drenched, I had to wring my clothes out before I could put them in the dryer. 
 I'm getting bored with rain.  We knew when we moved here  we'd have to put up with high humidity and more rainfall than we were use to, Hemet, CA where we'd moved from had averaged about 7 inches of rain a year.  While living there my skin had dried out, cracked, wrinkled and aged oh so nicely.  I resembled an elderly horny toad.
Then one fine day after seeing the sun for 700 days in a row I turned to Mac and said,"I'd like to live where they have 4 seasons, where summer has a smell."
And so we moved back to Georgia which does have 4 seasons, with winter being mild, and summer does have a smell, usually that of pine trees on a hot summer day.  But unfortunately this is one of those years where rain has ruled the weather.  My yard never completely dries up and the lagoon is lapping at our backyard.  The thing I smell most this year is mold.
Thought my skin has stopped cracking, my wrinkles have filled in a bit (that's not cosmetic surgery that's fat),  I'm now growing webbing between my fingers and toes.  And like the little froggy in the picture I'm doing a lot of really bad singing in the rain.







Wednesday, August 19, 2009

My Adventures in Wallyworld, Not to Be Confused With Wonderland


There's a d**n good reason why I do most of my shopping online and my latest trip to Wallyworld has brought that home.  Now I don't intrinsiclly dislike Wallyworld like many others do.  I use it for quick shopping of items that I want to buy cheaply.  I don't mind Wally being cheap, I want it to be cheap.  And I realize they don't pay their workers much and you get what you pay for.  But if you want a better paying job stay in school or go to college, that's what I did.  Now  all that aside, I expect to run into Wally do my shopping and be out of there quickly, before I catch something (and the way Wally has looked lately that would be some south of the border disorder).  When we went there Monday I was already grumpy, I don't know why, can't be because it's rained forever, my yard is soggy, my house is a mess, my back aches, I'm old and Obama wants to cut Metacare, so all I wanted was an "in and out"  experience of very short duration.  Unfortunately I also needed a watch, having bought a really cheap one the last time I'd been there, cheaper than Timex, and I had discovered that I couldn't see the numbers  or tell time with it. So  I stood at the jewelry counter where all the precious and semi-precious Timex's were locked up (Timex's would definitely be #1 on the list of items I'd steal if I ever took up shoplifting at Wally) and waited while the clerk, excuse me, sale's assistant, took care of the man in front of me who didn't have a clue as to what he was buying or was supposed to be buying so he had his cell phone out sending pictures to someone so they  could help him out.  After he had made his decision, refinanced the national debt and made his purchase the sale's associate slowly glided over to me as if lifting her feet would cause an inbalance in the universe so she must proceed accordingly.  She unlocked the display case containing the precious time gear, retrieved a Timex, slowly put it in a box, and disappeared from view without leaving the counter.  I waited nearly 10 minutes till another associate from another department wandered behind the counter, was handed a Timex box by a disembodied hand and I was finally able to make my purchase.
I could have finished my shopping without getting too much grumpier if it had not been for the fact that I spent the rest of my time looking for items I couldn't find.  This was not our home Wally, but we shop there from time-to-time, but I always have trouble finding things.  There is no logic to its layout.  Food was easy and if I had wanted to go hunting I'd have been ok, but shoes were nowhere near clothes and housewares was near electronics, perhaps because coffee pots and toaster are electronic.  I'm sure there's some Jr. Executive somewhere who spends all his time laying out the store, deciding where each department should be, placing  them in the most unlikely location, and then when people begin to learn the layout, reorganizing the whole place on the theory that if a customer is lost they'll wander through more departments instead of heading directly to where they want to go.
Anyway, by the time Mac found me I was tired, grumpier and ready to leave.  I'm going to have to stay out of Wally when I'm tired and refurbish my Spanish skills so I'll feel more at home there.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Ima Needs



It's an Ima needs kind of day so here goes.
Ima needs some energy.  I don't want to start drinking Red Bull (which would have me whizzing around here like the Energizer Bunny on speed), but I need some energy.  I'm dragging so bad I'm leaving snail tracks.
Ima needs Congress and the President to slow down on Health Care reform, if it's that important lets take our time.  Our Doctor is of the opinion it will probably screw up a good system, and I trust my Doctor.
Ima needs to lose some weight she's beginning to resemble Jabba the Hut.
Ima needs a cleaning lady and needs to stop being too cheap to hire one.  Though Lord knows that if I got one I'd probably clean the house before she came so she wouldn't think we were slobs.
Ima needs her hair to stop falling out, nobody wants to see a bald old lady.
Ima need to find her sense of humor, she hasn't laughed in days and that's just not Ima!      






Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hurricane Season


Hurricane season starts in May and runs till the end of November.  This year we've been lucky, no hurricanes, and until this weekend to named storms at all.  But it looks like our luck has run out.  There's a small storm out in the Atlantic they've name Tropical Storm Ana and behind her is Tropical Storm Bill.  Ana doesn't look too bad, will probably track along south of Florida,  we have storms as big as her all the time, but Bill looks bigger and stronger and they're predicting it will turn into a Hurricane later this week.
Then while we were all focusing on the storms in the Atlantic (where most hurricanes form) a sneaky little bugger known as Tropical Depression #4 has formed just south of the Florida Panhandle in the Gulf of Mexico.  They're predicting it will become Tropical Storm Claudette before it comes ashore later today.  Don't know how much rain we'll get from all this but I do know we've already had more than 5 inches this last week without
 any Tropical Storms which always drop more rain than regular .  We once had one that dropped 14 inches in a day here.
I've already warned (threatened) Mac that if it's going to rain that much we'll have to start some of the house painting we've been putting off.
Right now Ana and Bill look like this. 

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Marie Antionette


Earlier this year Mac and I saw the film  "Marie Antionette" directed by Sofia Coppola.  I pick the films we watch and try not to subject Mac to too many "chic flicks".  But we'd both enjoyed "Lost in Translation" an earlier Coppola film and I was intriqued by the updating of the Marie Antionette story by using "modern" music and dialogue.  
I knew little about this Queen other than the often repeated line, "Let them eat cake!".  So I was very surprised to find myself feeling a lot of sympathy for her.  I think Kirsten Dunst did a fantastic job of portraying her, showing the young girl (15) who literally had to give up everything, right down to the small dog she'd brought with her, to become Queen of France.
Having seen the movie I needed to know more about her so I got the book "Marie Antionette" by Antonia Fraser.  The movie was based on this book and I began to work my way through its 544 pages.  I usually read fiction and find nonfiction, particularly biographies, slow going.  And such was the case with this book.  I can finish off a fiction book of this length in a couple of days.  But I've been at Marie for more than a month, footnotes and all.  I'm almost
 finished with the "Widow Capet" as she became known and find that the sympathy I developed for her after the movie was well placed.  Married to probably the most inoffensive King  France had ever hadm she was demonized, as was he, for problems for beyond their control.  She might have been frivolous, but truth be told she wasn't overly bright, but had a "good" heart and genuinely cared about those around her, and the citizens of France.  Ordered by her Mother Maria Teresa of Austria and then her brother Joseph the Emperor to meddle in state affairs she did her utmost not to.  What she cared about were here children (2 died young) and her friends.  But she became they symbol for all that was wrong with France, and there was much that was wrong.
I've really enjoyed the book, but the movie was easier going.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Shopping Online


I admit it, I'm lazy! I do most of my shopping online, I don't want to run from store to store looking at stuff. Today I bought a dryer, yes my 28 year old dryer finally died. Bought the new one from Home Depot and it will be here next week, delivered free, and they're hauling the old one off free. It was easy shopping. I "went" to Lowe's, Home Depot, Sears and AAFES (military store) all without leaving the house. I probably looked at 100 dryers, read many reviews and compared more than a dozen dryers. How easy is that!
Then I went shoe shopping at a store I've used many times and they
kept insisting I get a password, wouldn't let me complete my order without it and when they sent me one that they insisted was mine they wouldn't accept it. So I couldn't complete my order. So no new shoes from them. They
need to monitor their website and see if it's user friendly.

I think I'll go to Macy's now.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Moving to Savannah


I was reading a message board today where the topic was "Should I Move to Savannah?", and as you can guess the arguments pro and con were endless. Some people cited crime, low wages and high cost of living as reasons why they no longer live in Savannah. These are folks who generally moved here from a bigger metropolitan area or left here for one.
Savannah isn't perfect, no place is, but it's so pretty I forgive it many things. We moved here from Hemet, CA (a town about 75 miles east of Los Angeles) about 6 years ago. Hemet was about 66,000 people and Savannah is about 130,000, so about double Hemet's size. But there's no comparison. Yes there's crime in Savannah, don't go to the areas where it happens, and everyone knows where that is. If you want a really high paying job don't move here, this is the South, wages are lower here, that's a fact of life. But what Savannah has, for it's size is amazing. When we first moved here we though we'd have to go to New Orleans to get real night life, but we don't! Savannah is alive with good restaurants, live music, cultural events, and outdoor activities. Mac and I paint and draw and Savannah is an incredible place to do that. I'm not surprised that there's an Art College here (SCAD). Founded in 1733 Savannah is full of beautiful areas, its Historic District, Victorian District, and 21 preserved squares make up one of the biggest Historic Landmark Districts in the USA.
One of the people who had left Savannah cited lack of cultural diversity, well Savannah is typical of southern cities, it is predominantly African-American, I'm sorry if that bothers some people, but this is the South.
We love Savannah, love eating at Huey's with its New Orleans menu, eating at the Olympia Cafe which has the best calamari in the world (and we've eaten it all over the world), eating at Paula Deen's for typical Southern cooking.
We love dancing at City Market.
And most of all we love the courteous people who have taken these Yankees to their hearts and make us feel at home.



Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Oh My Aching Back!


I've had an aching back this week and it's been about as bad as I've ever felt it.  I had to lay on the bed to put my pants on, couldn't bend over at all.  My lower back has bothered me for years,  if I abuse it.  And through the years I have definitely abused it, taken more than a few falls doing what I shouldn't be doing or at least doing it too quickly for my old body.
Don't know what triggered this go around, can't remember doing anything I shouldn't have.  I guess I'll just blame it on the humidity which seems to seep into my bones.  Mac rubbed me down with "horse liniment" and I'd taken aspirins so it started to settle down.  But today when we got back from our walk I could barely climb the stairs, so Mac rubbed me down again and BOY! this time the liniment felt super hot, soaked right into my muscles and everything loosened up.  I guess the secret to it was that I was warmed up from my walk, all my pores were open and that stuff, instead of sitting on my skin and slowly sinking in got right into the muscles and went to work.  I was amazed!  I can tie my shoes and dress myself, what an improvement!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Keith Obermann



I don't usually listen to Keith Obermann, don't usually listen to any news commentator. When I retired, I retired. But I have been following the debate on health care, and like many people I'm not very happy with what's being proposed. I have questions, so I've been listening to a lot of the "Talking Heads" so I can get a rounded idea of what's going on. Of course Fox is totally against it, CNN is totally for it, the local news hardly covers it (Miley Cyrus is much more important), and network news is still acting as unofficial cheerleaders for Obama, so I "cruised" some of the other outlets like MSNBC and who do I find but Keith Obermann with all but steam coming out of his ears lambasting anyone who dares to question the need to change our health coverage in this country. He literally said that those being contentious at the Town Meetings were stupid. He didn't hint they were stupid he flat out said it. I'm tired of being talked down to by news people on each coast who think because I live in the South that I'm some sort of ignorant fool probably married to my cousin.
salon.com (a very liberal website) has a great article today titled "Are Liberals Seceding From Sanity?", the liberals are crazy to insult white southerners as a group. The article says that we aren't the ignorant rednecks the media loves to portray us as. It's all about how the media castigates white southerns for holding beliefs (against abortion, gay marriage etc) that a majority of African-Americans and Latinos also hold, but it's the white southerns who get called sick, racist, homophobic. I recommend the article and I don't recommend Keith Obermann, what a jerk!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Life Returns to Normal


My sister Susie left today for Oklahoma, it was a great visit, and I really appreciate her driving all the way from Oklahoma to here on her own. On her first day here we took her to Tybee Beach and had lunch at the Crab Shack. She and Mac shared a dish of mussels in wine (I don't eat things that don't have eyebrows), then they both had a Low Country Boil and I had a half-pound of shrimp, or what passes for a half-pound because I ate a half-pound and still had a half-pound to take home. Then we took her out to introduce her to the alligators they keep there.
On Saturday she and I went to yard-sales and the flea market, two of her favorite things to do . On Sunday she sat out back and fished for a couple of hours, too hot for me. She caught a bunch of fish and let them go.
So she's off home today and the house seems a bit empty, but it's time to get back to real life.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

I Love My Pool


I love my pool. We ordered it to be put in the day after we got here. We had to have an above ground one because the water table is so high here. We've had a pool ever since we were sent to Georgia in 1981. I was upset when we got the orders because I remembered Georgia from the 1960's and we hadn't liked it, of course we were poor as dirt then. Mac only made $185 a month in the Army. So we probably would have hated anywhere. When I heard we were going there again I said I wanted a pool and we got one. They dug the hole, reenforced it with cinderblock, padded it and added a vinyl liner. It was huge, about 18 feet by 36 feet and 8 feet deep at the deep end. We really liked it, when we moved to another house in Georgia we had the same kind of pool put in (did I say 0ur pool guy was a dead ringer for Richard Petty the NASCAR driver? We use to joke that when we couldn't get hold of him he must be driving).
When we moved to California we put in another vinyl pool, it was kidney shaped and only 5 feet deep because they hit granite when digging it and if they went deeper they'd have had to use dynamite. Anyway, a great little pool.
We moved to another house in California and put in what is your typical inground pool, called gunite, looks like white plaster sides. It was pretty, but boy do they stain, something the vinyl pools hardly do.
When we moved here we put in the above ground with metal sides and a vinyl liner. As soon as the pool was in we had a wooden deck built up to it connecting it to the house. I swim everyday, couldn't live without it. In California even though we lived in a hot area the nights were quite cool and we generally were only able to use the pool from July through September. Here we're in the pool by May, sometimes April and swim through September. A much longer swimming season.
If we move the first thing we'll put in is a pool, use it more than air conditioning!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sisters


I have 2 sisters and the younger one is coming tomorrow from Oklahoma. Her name is Susan, I still call her Susie, childhood habits live on. She's stopping off in Alabama to visit a friend on the way and then will be here for the weekend. It's a long drive for one person and I appreciate her coming.
That's her in the striped shirt. She's had a rough couple of years, had nonHodgekins Lymphoma, and had to go through Chemo. But she's better now. She needs to quit smoking, but that's another story.
She's 3 years younger than me and she'll always be my baby sister. My older sister Judy says she can remember her being born, but that's too long ago for me. She's always been there. Judy and I use to gang up on her when we were kids, we thought she was our Mother's pet. But as time passed by and Judy got married there were just the 2 of us there and I got to know her, I know that seems strange, but 3 years is a big difference when you're a kid.
We've always stayed in touch, but haven't lived near each other since I got married and Mac was drafted into the Army.
We're orphans now and I think that makes us closer.
I wish my older sister Judy could have come too, but she couldn't, maybe next time.
Anyway I plan on enjoying this visit, wearing her out totally. We're going to Tybee to the Beach, going crabbing, going to Savannah for dinner, and out dancing one night. She loves flea markets so we'll probably go to Keller's the local big one. If there's time I'd like to take her for a dinner cruise on the Savannah River.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tattoos


Thought I'd talk about tattoos today. Not that I'm thinking of getting one, just I am bemused by the folks who do. Now when I was growing up the only people who got tattoos were drunken sailors on shore leave who went to Tiajuana. Now everyone has one, even several of the female teachers I worked with in California.
I don't like tattoos, as I told my class one day, "Ladies don't get tattoos." and one little girl said, "My Mommy has a tattoo." and I repeated that Ladies don't have tattoos.
I know I'm old, I know I'm not hip, but there is something so offputting about a tattoo. It's one thing to have one when your young and dumb, but when you finally grow up, go out in the world, look for a job, your future employer frequently sees your tattoo and not your impressive resume'.
And what do you tell your grandkids about your "Born to Kill" tattoo? You may be the greatest person in the world, but as a teacher when I sat down to conference with parents and Mom was covered in tattoos I had a dfficult time taking them seriously. I know lots of people would say it's my problem, and perhaps it is, but if you want me to pay attention to you, let your words be louder than your tattoos.

Monday, August 3, 2009

New Taxes?


Officials in the Obama administration are starting to talk about new taxes on the middle class (also known as Washington's favorite milk cow).
On Sunday Timothy Geitner, Secretary of the Treasury and Laurence Summers, Head of the President's National Economic Council, both refused to rule out raising taxes on the middle class, what a surprise.
They say it may be necessary inorder to reduce the deficit and to fund universal health care. So thems that got are gonna get taken, again.
I'm not really surprised that they would consider raising taxes, Democrats always raise taxes, what I'm surprised by is the timing of the mention of taxes. Congress is heading home for their Summer break and they're already going to get an earful about the health care being proposed, now they're going to hear about taxes.
When I first started voting at 21 I was a Republican, having been much influenced by my Father who was very vocal about his politics. My Mother was a Democrat, but never talked about politics much. I remained a Republican till Watergate and it was so stupid, yes I know politicians are stupid by nature, but it really offended me. So I became a Democrat and voted for Jimmy Carter , I'm embarrassed to say. I remained a Democrat all through the Reagan and first Bush years and was thrilled when Bill Clinton got elected. Voted for him twice, but by then I saw what liberal policies were doing to California (literally destroying it) and became a Republican again and voted for George Bush both times.
In the last election I held my nose and voted for McCain, but I was not happy. I felt that the selection of Sarah Palin was a slap in the face. I stood in that booth and almost wrote Hilary Clintion in, she really was the most qualified candidate.
The Republicans need to find a candidate under a 100 who knows what a Blackberry is and uses the Internet on a regular basis. I'm a moderate, I want policies that take care of the majority of the people, not worrying about the fringes. If they don't come up with a decent candidate I may just sit the next election out and that's something I've never done.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Fire!


I am devastated! Our club has burned down. We were there last night dancing, and then this morning about 8:30 a 911 call went in (from a local Wafflehouse) and the firemen were there within 5 minutes. But the nearest fire hydrant was 1500 feet away so though the fire was put out the damage was extensive and the club is gone! Where oh where will we dance?
We had been without a good place to dance for years. We'd gone to the Silver Dollar/Redleg which had a decent floor, but they were out in the sticks and could never attract a decent crowd and eventually stopped having bands.
We went to Gillys which has a good dance floor, good crowds and good bands. But it's nearly 45 miles away down small 2-lane roads.
Mostly we went to Tommy's which was a good neighborhood bar with a small dance floor. But as other places closed Tommy's became more crowded and eventually we tired of fighting for floor space.
Then after 4 years of being closed (they were originally on the north side of Savannah) the Cavalier reopenned in Hardeeville, SC on New Year's Eve. We were there and have been there nearly every Friday and Saturday since. We painted the murals on the walls, Mac painted paintings for them, we painted the big sign out front. It was home, and now it is gone.
We feel homeless.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Yard Sales


I need to talk about yard sales today. I'm not inherently opposed to yard sales, in fact we participate in the yearly one that our subdivision has each year. What I find strange about yard sales is the number of people who get up before dawn, stuff themselves with carbohydrates to give them energy and drive off into the rising sun looking for .... I don't know what the h**l they're looking for.
They dash from yard sale to yardsale buying other people's trash, yes I know that one man's trash is another man's treasure, but I don't understand is the thrill of it all. People are out there dashing from one site to another like hunters after big game. One little old lady was so excited by it all that she ran over our mailbox last year in her excitement to get to the "goods" (never apologized, never said anything).
Now I've been to a few yard sales, bought a few picture frames (when you paint you always need frames), even bought Mac a guitar at one, but never felt the urge to speed from one sale to another putting men, women, small children and pets in danger in my haste.
But that's what was going on in my neighborhood this morning. Mac and I walk every morning and today it was more a game of dodgeball than a walk. It was one speeding car after another. And to add to the excitement our neighborhood has only 4 street names, ours is the only unique name (C.S.S. Nashville ) the rest are variations of 3 names (Senec, Passaic, Montauk) with variations at the end to differintiate between them (street, lane, court, way). So finding a certain street can be tricky. To make it even more fun all the streets are dead end, but not marked that way. So this morning we had speeders, people asking for directions, people making u-turns and vehicles narrowly missing pedestrians (there are no sidewalks here). Not a leisurely stroll. And all this because there was one yard sale.
Oh the thrill of the hunt!

Tuesday in the Swamp

The house is once again filled with the smell of Gingerbread, I baked a load of little men, even wore my Gingerbread Apron, but I'm too ...