Archive for August, 2008

Entry for August 26, 2008

August 26, 2008

I am a coffee punk! Or a coffee machine dunce – however you want to put it.

I was trying to make coffee in the Bunn coffee maker (which is a rather fancy heavy-duty coffee maker) – and please note that I had done this successfully a number of times before.

I poured the water into the tank at the top. Then I noticed the little grey lever – which I was very pleased to think to myself – oh, that’s how the machine knows when to have the water come out – because the lid on the water container presses down on that lever.

I then pull out the coffee filter container, and then take away the glass coffee container. Then, very carefully, and completely without any thought whatsoever, I put the lid down on the water tank.

Scalding hot water shoots out of the place where the filter was supposed to be – and I put my hand up to, I dunno, repel the water maybe – and get a little burnt for my bassackwardness. I flip the lid open, but water now comes out in a hot fast dribble instead of the lava-hot jets it used to, but it’s still spilling all over the counter. First I try to mop it up, thinking the dribble with lessen, but it does not. Then I finally get the bright idea of putting the glass container back until the place where it’s supposed to be and catching some of the dribble. I finally get the filter and coffee into the basket and put that in. Then I put the lid back down on the coffee machine. The coffee runs while I mop up (and I don’t think I’m the only coffee punk, as the hot water has re-activated all the old stains that were hidden under the machine) – which takes a fair number of paper towels, which were helpfully placed above the sink. Finally, there winds up with about 3/4 the amount of coffee that should be in there – but I’m so relieved, I don’t care.

Hell, I don’t even drink the stuff. I was just being a good office neighbor and refilling the empty pot.

Entry for August 20, 2008

August 20, 2008

Observation on adolescence – specifically, W’s 15 year old nephew.

Apparently, puberty makes you lose all strength in your core. Because whenever the kid tried to sit down, he was too weak to sit up straight and then would just collapse off to one side of the couch, and try to lie on the couch. Of course, he was too tall to just lay on a couch, so he’d curl his legs up on the cushions. There upon, a grandparent would come by and yell at him to sit up, because there wasn’t enough places to sit.

So then he’d sit with his legs straight down, but leaning over the arm of the couch in some fashion – because he just didn’t seem to know what to do with his limbs. Shortly after any of these interactions, the kid had to get up and then he’d go upstairs to his room, where I’m sure he was laying down, exhausted by the attempts to stay upright.

I tried to stay out of it – and my seat of preference was on the floor. I’d just as soon not get involved in any of it.

Entry for August 19, 2008

August 19, 2008

My In-laws – that’s an interesting story.

So we’re at the beach – which is a whole thing about annoying because we couldn’t get out of the house before 10am – even though Henry wakes up about 7 – and it costs ~$15 to park. Henry, after a little bit of acclimatization, is pretty happy wading about in his little body/floaty suit. W’s mom does the usual thing – where she declares it’s time to get into the water and there is a choice or not to go in. Then after some sunning, it’s time to talk about lunch – it’s not even 11. The niece (granddaughter who’s 11) wants to go into the water, but W’s mom says something like “you could have gone in when I did, but it’s too late now.”

I mean, are you kidding me? It’s the beach, for a kid who was pretty happy with some little fish nets catching minnows and hermit crabs and collecting shells. She was 11 – what a way to talk to a kid. But I guess it was too late to go in – and we left about 11:15 to get lunch because otherwise it gets too crowded.

My issue about this is that we only spent about an hour in at the beach the entire time we were at the Cape – I mean, what’s the point of going to a beach locale if you don’t get to the beach? Admittedly the weather wasn’t great, but geez. We didn’t go back – like we somehow couldn’t go back. I would have been happy to go back – Henry liked the water and the beach – and it’s not like I’ve got a lot of other things to do there.

I don’t know why there couldn’t have been a picnic cooler if MIL was so interested in her meals and not being crowded. She’s not even that old – but she’s terribly elderly. Doesn’t adjust to change well, hates the young and noisy, won’t pump her own gas, stopped driving new routes – especially on the highway.

There’s a lot more stuff – but it just drives me crazy. Like the increasing hearing loss. W’s dad says it’s just that we mumble (and let me tell you, I don’t have much of an inside voice, so I don’t think that’s it) or it’s the ambient noise. That’s deafness, people.

This is not a true life story here, but it is an incident that can be easily imagined based on the history I’ve had. Say the two of them are in a car, FIL is driving and MIL is shotgun. Then MIL says ‘turn here’ but FIL can’t hear, so she repeats it, very loudly, and he jumps and yells in surprise and misses the turn, and then he complains she doesn’t speak up. It just drives me crazy. Go to the doctor, already. I’d go if my kids were hounding me, just to prove that nothing is wrong. Jesus. Help . Me.

Entry for August 18, 2008

August 18, 2008

There’s a line in the AC\DC’s song – You shook me all night long – and I can’t figure it out.

She had the sightless eyes, tellin’ me no lies, knockin’ me out with those American thighs.

What’re they saying? I mean, it finally made sense to me that “American thighs” insofar as that AC/DS are Australian – so I suppose they’re rhapsodizing about a foreign lady, but it’s never been a real cue for hot times. I don’t think. I’ve never heard about it in any other context – but I’ve always thought American thighs were sort of fatty and flabby, given what lots of people in the international community seem to think about Americans in general. Of course, I’ve never hung out with a lot of non-American men, and perhaps their conversations stroll along to the arena of how great those American thighs are. I have to say, that’s not a compliment I’d want – (in sort of urban voice – think Sylvester Stallone) “yo yo lady, show us your American thighs.”

Maybe it’s a shorthand for American Gladiator type thighs. Thighs that’ll crush you – you know, shock and awe. Of course, I think that’s a little anachronistic. The song goes on about what a man-eater the lady is, and it’s sort of awful, really. Is the singer proud that he’s not man enough for this American thighed lady (who may or may not be American – just has big thighs)?

What about the sightness eyes part? (if I’m getting the lyrics right.) That makes no sense whatsoever. Maybe if you consider that this dude might be the one in the schoolboy outfit?

I do like the song – but the lyrics confuse me.

Brownie Recipe for August 18, 2008

August 18, 2008

3 oz unsweetened chocolate

8 tablespoons butter

1 cup sugar

0.5 tsp baking powder

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

Oven to 350 deg F. Melt choc and butter in bowl in microwave. In separate bowl, mix sugar, baking powder, eggs, vanilla. Add choc/butter, and stir until smooth. Stir in flour until no streaks of flour remain. Scrape into pan. Bake for 22-27 minutes. I use a 8×8 inch baking dish, and you can get 16 pieces.

For extra goodness, before baking, get 1/3 cup smooth peanut butter at room temp, and dribble on surface. Stir around and create swirls.

Entry for August 17, 2008

August 17, 2008

Have been pondering one of Henry’s little tricks – one he’s very fond of. Nose-picking.

Isn’t it amazing that evolution has managed to keep our fingers from getting too big to pick our nose? We’ve retained the opposable thumb because it’s so useful, and in that line of thinking, we’ve also kept relatively small fingers to pick our noses because it’s helpful to clear the nasal passages? Do chimps pick their noses?

Also, I am a total evolution believer. Because evolution is a constant process, and things are still being worked out. Like, and I’m sorry for this reveal, this TMI, but when I was pregnant, I had some terrible constipation, and I swear, the trains were bigger than the station exit, if you understand what I mean. If God makes everything perfect, it wouldn’t be possible to be in such discomfort. That’s all I’m saying.

Entry for August 09, 2008

August 9, 2008

I’m very happy to have the toddler toys from the various fast food chains. But I do pull a fast one on the baby – I hide the toy until there comes a time of great need – like screaming in the car with a lot of time left in the ride. The toddler toys are nicer than I thought they’d be – either the toys have gotten better over time or toddler toys have a certain standard that regular fastfood giveaway toys have slid far from.

But as a funny thought – I got a toy for Henry that is a Transformer – but not really much of one – I mean, it is a toddler toy – so that means a single item, chunky, simply mechanism. It’s got 3 moveable bits – two doors and the head that hinges up. Okay. Here’s the funny. The thing comes with instructions – and check this out – it has 5 panels for demonstration. Really. 3 moveable parts, 5 panels. No words. ‘Cause toddlers don’t read, right?

What toddler is going to be bothered with that little instructional slip that came with the toy? And any parent worth their salt isn’t going to bother – if a toddler can figure it out, then, duh, what’s a parent doing wasting their time looking at the instruction? I only did so because I thought the other side had a coupon. (It didn’t.) Also, because I thought, wha? It comes with instructions?

Entry for August 08, 2008

August 8, 2008

So my mother’s watching this commercial for Orkin (pest control co), which consists of a human-sized cockroach ringing a doorbell, and then after the door is opened, offering the homeowner a pizza and saying things like ‘don’t you want a pizza’ in a sleazy voice. She asks me what this commercial is about – and why is a cockroach ringing the doorbell? why would you let a cockroach like that into the house? Why is that cockroach holding a pizza box? Why would people make such a gross commercial?

The whole point of the commercial just went completely over her head. Whoosh. You could hear it go.

This is where I wonder if the amnesia thing would make much of a difference, you know, in her day to day conversation and ability to retain/get things.

On a slightly different note – Inlaws will be about next week – might be incommunicato then.

2nd Entry for August 06, 2008

August 6, 2008

There was this guy at a job I used to have – and he dressed horribly. I mean – just awful. I have this strong image of a medium height guy, dark hair, in dark parachute pants (this was the 90’s, but even then parachute pants were outre) and a khaki camouflage patterned t-shirt that stretched tightly over a beer gut and schlumpy shoulders (I’m going to have to consult with those guys – and see if that impression has been overblown). In discussing it with fellow employees – they said (whether they actually knew or guessed this, I don’t know) that this fellow was dressed by this wife to actually keep other women away.

Well, this blew my mind. I always was under the impression that women who bought clothes for their men felt that this improved their looks – not the other way ’round. I mean – the guys I know whose wives buy their clothes look nice – neat, no holes, coordinated, just kempt. (Kept?)

Anyway, that’s mean – doing that to a human being. W hates the idea of me buying clothes for him – maybe he sees the way I dress myself and then is afraid of looking like that (which is fine – makes things easier). Maybe he doesn’t want to be one of those guys who can’t buy clothes because his wife does all the shopping. Whatever. Of course, this means he has terribly holey socks and things, but we’ve come to a compromise. If something comes to light as toss-worthy (especially if it’s something one of us likes and wants to keep), the owner has the option of picking something they want the other to toss.

His mother still buys him clothes, but whatever. At least no one will accuse me of dressing W badly to keep other women away. (which seems ridiculous. If that’s all that took – men’s dresswear would be the province of gay men only. Well, gay men and their mothers.)

Besides – I know lots of guys who can dress themselves badly – without any help.

Youth and beauty? Nuh-uh.

August 6, 2008

I have some friends who have some young guys at in-laws, and I have to say – maybe I’m an old lady or something is wrong with me – but these guys are kind of butt. Really full of themselves and know everything and not particularly helpful or anything. The kind of guy who would make their wives/girlfriends carry all the luggage if they didn’t feel like carrying it themselves.

When I hear about guys like this, I wonder about all those older women who have things with younger men. I mean – yuck. Why have a thing with a young guy who’s an idiot – unless it’s just for physical things – but you’d have to talk to them sometimes, if only to tell them to get out. Maybe I shouldn’t say ‘all those’ because I actually don’t know any.

I am getting old. I was recently talking to a student and he asked me something about how his map/poster looked and I said to get rid of some thing because it made the item look nicer and easier to read. Then he replied ‘but it’s prettier this way.’ Then I said, “at my age, one prefers simplicity and easy to read over beauty.” He found this hilarious. But in thinking about it, I do believe it. I’m over beauty only. Give me simplicity and easy to read. And a dude who’ll carry all the luggage while we’re traveling.