Thursday, July 31, 2008

Personal Rewards of a Thorough Cleaning

Why yes... I am taking yet another break from housekeeping. How nice that you noticed. Look... there's something shiny over there in the corner. Oh, wait. Its just the metalic paper from a cigarette pack that I missed. Never mind.

Ya know... thoroughly cleaning a toilet is almost as rewarding as when the windows are cleaned. You can just see it sparkle instantly. However, if anyone else notices how clean your toilet is, you know you've waited way too long to do it.

I would like to see toilets made with a base that is shaped like a rectangle or box. Get rid of all those curves where the dirt rests. A box shape would make it so much easier and faster to clean and the dust and dirt would just fall to the floor. The dribbles, not so much. And cover the hinges. Too many crevices.

Speaking of dribbles.... how can the boys miss the inside of the toilet so much. I mean, unlike females, they have the option of actually aiming their pee... yet they so often miss the mark. Or actually... they make the mark, if you know what I mean.

Okay... back to the (roll the eyes) gratifying work detail.

Hmmm ... Imagine That!

I just heard that the oil companies made over a trillion dollars in profit for the year. That's a T for trillion. P for profit. Exxon made 41 billion dollars itself. And guess what. It spent only 1% of its profit on researching alternative energy sources. BP did slightly better at 2.9% of profit going to research. And now Bush wants to drill for more USA oil. You know, cause the oil companies could probably use more money. Hey, they need to make a living while they look for alternative energy sources just like the rest of us.

And on a different note.... I'm feeling embarrassed for McCain. He's hired fools to manage his campaign. The recent ads are so childish, its pitiful. Its embarrassing. And for McCain to talk about Obama's celebrity status while he stands there wearing his $520 Italian calveskin loafers is stupid. On the other side, Obama better not get too cocky and turn to childish rebuttals because that will really diminish his standing in a lot of people's eyes.



*Do you ever get tired of cooking? The most inexpensive and healthy foods come in raw form which means cooking is desirable. At least with meat. Last night I started thinking about dinner... what would it be. (drooping of shoulders) It would require cooking something. Every single day... cooking a minimun of once a day, often twice. And every time you cook there is equipment that then requires cleaning. Over and over. Please don't misunderstand. I'm very grateful to have the opportunity to cook a meal, but... you know.

*I've been awake since around 3am. Is it any wonder I sleep off and on all day? And it doesn't matter. Ain't retirement grand!

*I haven't checked for mail in a couple of days. I will do it a little later in the day. I've already gotten my four billing statements so the only thing left to receive by mail is junk.

I guess I'll go take my shower and get my day started right. I'm feeling totally wide awake but since its so early I don't want to do anything that makes noise. Sounds between the apartments are easily heard. Maybe I should make a quick run to the store... the one that is open 24 hrs a day.
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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Nothing going on here...


I'm trying to do some housekeeping without being inspired to do so. Lots of breaks involved, but progress is being made in spite of me.

My life is so quiet I have nothing to post. However, I did want to mention a terrific program I saw on public TV the other night. Perhaps you have seen it. Or you've already heard about him. It was about Randy Pausch and his Last Lecture at Carnegie Mellon University. There are many youtube videos about him and I believe his last lecture is also available there. If you want to take a peek, just key in "Last Lecture" in the youtube search field. If you want to see the full lecture, just look for the video posted by carnegiemellonu and/or the video that is 1 hr and 16 minutes long. (I haven't watched this one yet, but I'm assuming its his lecture.) What a fun guy and an amazing inspiration.

Monday, July 28, 2008


I just caught the tailend of a local news story about low-income apartments and how they will be watched to make sure no one living there makes more than $67,000. WHAT...??? An income of $67,000 is low-income?!? BWAH HA HA HA HA HA HA

What constitutes "low income" to you?

To me, a single individual making $20,000 or less would be low income. A family of four making $30,000 or less would also be low income. And if the price of living keeps going up, these figures would need to be changed immediately.


 Another good day. What more could one ask.

Yesterday morning I was sitting at the pc. From that position I can turn my head to the left and see the front window. I had the blinds partially closed... just enough so I could see out but someone couldn't see in without plastering their face up against the window. I noticed someone outside looking around as though they didn't know which apartment they needed. The person pulled out their cell phone. About that time my phone rang.

"??! Huh?"

Was that person outside calling me?!? What the hell's going on??

It was my daughter from Texas, better known as my Texas daughter.


No warning. No alert. Four months ago she mentioned she wanted to come to Oregon for a vacation trip... just her. Leave the hubby and two boys at home. That was the extent of the conversation. I had started to figure the economy had changed her plans, but here she was on my doorstep. Did I mention I was surprised?

She had gotten to town late last night and was staying with her mother-in-law just down the street a mile or so. (MIL has room and they seem to be good friends... up to a point, anyway.) She has her one-week all planned out so that she gets to see everyone.

We had a good conversation. Her most recent interest is in writing and she's signed up to take a writing course. I, of course, encouraged her to start a blog to help with the discipline needed to write daily. And... I lied to her when she asked me if I had a blog. (gasp) I don't want to have to tiptoe around with what I say on my blog. I mean, I do enough as it is... adding family pressure would be too much. So, no one that I know in the flesh knows about my blog. Only cyber friends know about it.

Its always pretty easy to talk with this daughter. I guess its mainly because she does most of the talking. hahahaha. She'll be back through here on Thursday. I'll have the dishes done and the floors swept by then.
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Friday, July 25, 2008

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I've Been Lied To....

My camera lied to me!! I don't know what this world is coming to when a mechanical device can lie. But then again, scales were always lying to me. No, really. The number displayed on the scale could not possibly be correct! Hey. This is my world. Anything is possible.

But back to the camera... this morning a tiny wee thought drifted ever so softly through my mind. It just didn't seem right that the batteries in my camera were 'done'. It was just too soon. So I grabbed the camera and took a picture of a pile of laundry. (It was a test, okay.) The camera worked!?! Mumble, mumble, mumble. I quickly tossed my two small watercolor tests down and took a picture.

First, let me state that very little time was taken with either one of these paintings. I think its clear as to which one was done with the wc pencils and which was done with the traditional watercolors.

The color blue, once again, did not change when water was added. No painting effect with the blue. (could be an isolated thing. maybe.) I suppose that I could increase the contrast by putting more wc pencil on and wetting it again.

I think the 'regular' wc has more life to it and the pencils have more control.
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Friday, July 18, 2008

Will It Be One of Those Days?

After hustling up quarters for laundry I discovered too late that there's no electricity in the laundry room. I discovered the situation AFTER putting the quarters in the machine. I'll be spending my day washing out things by hand.

Its frustrating because someone said they had called the property management company to let them know last week that all the outside lights were not working. I didn't make the connection that this affected the laundry room. And of course no one bothered to put up a sign so others would know about the situation. That's what is really ticking me off right now. Well... there's a BIG RED SIGN UP NOW!!!

Needless to say, I'll be calling the property management company today. I'll start off nice, but you know what they say... the squeaky wheel gets the oil. And I can SQUEAK LOUD if the timing's right and I'm angry at the time.

I guess we'll find out how good or bad the current property management company is now.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ah... er... No Thank You. No Extra Protein for Me.

EEEEEUUUUUUUUU I've read about things like this, but I've not encountered it myself. Well... as far as I know.

I was adding water to a pot of broccoli in preparation for cooking. Luckily I had my glasses on at the time. I bet you know where I'm going with this, huh?

A very healthy looking earwig climbed out from under one of the broccoli pieces. I guess he didn't like water. Oh hell... what do I do now?!

Sigh. I'm not going into details, but I dealt with it, but boy, I'm sure going to be looking at broccoli in a whole different light in the future. A huge search light!

No Engery

 In the comments from the previous post Sandy asked about seeing a painting done with the watercolor pencils. I made one. Actually, I made a small painting using liquid watercolors and the same subject using the watercolor pencils for comparison. Much to my dismay, I can't take a picture of them yet. No battery power. Its so frustrating because I only used the camera four times... five at the most... and already there's not enough juice to use the camera. GGRRRRRRRRRRR (and I know I know.... I should be using rechargable batteries, but I haven't had the extra money to get everything needed yet.)

Six years ago (back when I had extra money to blow) I had purchased a universal digital camera power adapter, but none of the three different sized plugs fit my camera. Technology is not my friend. My friends must over look my defficiencies, but technology is stubborn. I must bend to its will and I don't bend easily any more.
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Watercolor Pencils

When I went to the store (Fred Meyer's, a.k.a. Kroger's) I remembered to check out the art supplies. I spotted some watercolor pencils at a price I could afford, $7.69, so I got them.

The box is strickly for storage. What I mean by that is when I'm going to use the pencils, I'll have to take them all out because its a bit difficult to get out one at a time. It did come with a free paint brush, but its a cheapy. Which is okay... I would have bought the pencils even if it didn't come with a free paint brush. A "free" brush is a nice touch.

I tried a couple of the colors out by putting two scribbles for each color tried. Then I used the brush and put water on one of them. The ones on the left have had water added to them. (I purposely made the red run a little. I wanted to see the intensity.)

The first thing I noticed was that on two of the colors, small flakes came off. I think they show up in the picture (the ones on the right side.) So you won't want to press too hard.

The next thing I noticed was that the color blue did not dissolve into watercolor. It looks like its just a regular colored pencil. I will need to check out the rest of the colors to see how they react.

For someone who is a draftsman first and a painter second, these pencils might really be fun.
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Its Wednesday Already!

I got nothing. Oh... I got the weather. I can talk about the weather. Hot. Its hot, damn it. You got weather?

I've got to go to the store again. Probably two stores. Not my favorite thing to do, but its certainly better than a root canal. Or jury duty. So... that means I must shower first. Do I have something clean to put on? Its been a while since doing any laundry, but I've been saving up my quarters. I think I have enough to do two loads... as long as I only need to dry one of them. Remember the art installation in Central Park where large pieces of cloth/flags were hung across the path? That's what my apartment will look like by tomorrow.

Okay... Okay... I'm a very busy person (weak cough) and I must be going. Places to go, people to see, and things to say. Or not.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Monday Morning

'Mom' had borrowed the car a few days ago and on Thursday she brought it back. She finally got the inside cleaned out.... from 2+ years ago. Actually, from 2 yrs up until now cleaned-out. She use to use the car a lot when we all lived together and the interior got really dirty. You know, goldfish (the crackers), potato chips and cookies, one lone slipper, one sandal, lots of bagging materials, and lots of old mail. All over the inside of the car. And now its gone. The only thing left to do is Armour-All the inside.... if I had some Armour All.

The boys were very energic. Maybe a sugar high... I'm not sure, but they were running around A LOT. They grow so fast!! Darius will be five years old in a few months. He's not a little boy any more. Sniffle. He's turning into a boy. A 'regular boy'.

I tried to get a good head shot of both of them, but they wouldn't cooperate. Darius looks scared, doesn't he. It wasn't me. All I did was call to him so I could get a photograph. Maybe he was scared that I was going to take the flashlight away from him, but everybody knows you HAVE TO HAVE a flashlight in the daytime!

Mom had trimmed up the boys hair using just scissors and she did a really good job. I especially like how Darius' turned out.... but he doesn't like it. I guess he put up a big stink about it, too. That's mom's attitude coming back to kick her in the butt. She use to stand firm about wanting the boys' hair to be long while everyone around her tried to talk her into getting it cut very short. (insert mother's snicker here. make it two snickers.)

I'm trying to get my butt in gear this morning. I'm going to go get a couple more pieces of clothing. That's a rare occurance for me, but I'm doing it. Plus, the store I go to is having a big 40% off most things, even clearance items. So... I gotta go jump in the shower now.

Update: It was a successful run. I got a 'work shirt' and a three piece outift in black. (I'll look like the grim reaper.) All for under $40. My kinda good.
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Friday, July 11, 2008

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Now the EPA is Going to Screw Us?

Here are the highlights of an article I just came across:

The "value of a statistical life" is $6.9 million in today's dollars, the Environmental Protection Agency reckoned in May — a drop of nearly $1 million from just five years ago.

When drawing up regulations, government agencies put a value on human life and then weigh the costs versus the lifesaving benefits of a proposed rule. The less a life is worth to the government, the less the need for a regulation, such as tighter restrictions on pollution.

Consider, for example, a hypothetical regulation that costs $18 billion to enforce but will prevent 2,500 deaths. At $7.8 million per person (the old figure), the lifesaving benefits outweigh the costs. But at $6.9 million per person, the rule costs more than the lives it saves, so it may not be adopted.

Some environmentalists accuse the Bush administration of changing the value to avoid tougher rules — a charge the EPA denies.

Dan Esty, a senior EPA policy official in the first Bush administration and now director of the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy, said that "it's hard to imagine that it has other than a political motivation."

The full article is here.

What the hell is going on? What the hell do they think they are doing? Crap, the FDA can't do anything to help us, and now the EPA is tossing us to the garbage heap. I'm stunned.

I Did Not Know This.... Did You?

"Maeve Reston of the Los Angeles Times -- the pool reporter on the bus -- asked McCain about comments adviser Carly Fiorina made earlier this week, calling it unfair that insurance companies cover Viagra but not birth control."

'ohmygawd... the man must be able to keep it up!! It might happen to me!' said the male executive. 'To hell with the babies. That's the woman's problem!' (my comments, not someone else's.)

I remember the time when Blue Cross would not cover a pregnancy/delivery when the woman was single. And it wasn't all that long ago in the general stream of things. (the pregnant woman was the person who had the insurance coverage thru her employment.)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Sell It on Ebay?

I went over to my friend's place yesterday for dinner and a game. She had fixed homemade chicken and noodles. I would say 'chicken soup' but the noodles suck up most of the moisture so it comes out to be just chicken and noodles. It was very good, too. She had made it yesterday so all the flavors were melded into one bowl of yumminess. She had also gotten a small Sara Lee cake in honor of my birthday.

She has to be careful with her diet due to health reasons so I usually come back home laden with goodness so she is not tempted by them. Yesterday was no different. I should be watching my dietary intake as well, but I'm the weaker one. (burp)

We played a game of Upwords and she won... again. That's about three or four times in a row. Odds should now be in my favor next time. As we played, we munched on nuts (and chocolate covered coffee beans which were fresh. oh dear. I, indeed, had to and did watch myself with those dangerous and delicious treats.) Right off the bat I noticed one large cashew that looked like a boot. "Should I try to sell this on Ebay?" I don't think a boot would bring anything close to what a Virgin Mary or a Jesus nut would bring. (I couldn't resist. Sorry.)

I needn't have worried. The boot got eaten along with all the other nuts in the heat of the game.


The corner of her porch again had its bright splash of color. I'm always impressed with the brilliant color of her red geraniums.
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Saturday, July 05, 2008

Our Government at Work

"MISSOULA, Mont. - The Bush administration is preparing to ease the way for the nation's largest private landowner to convert hundreds of thousands of acres of mountain forestland to residential subdivisions.

The deal was struck behind closed doors between Mark E. Rey, the former timber lobbyist who oversees the U.S. Forest Service, and Plum Creek Timber Co., a former logging company turned real estate investment trust that is building homes. Plum Creek owns more than 8 million acres nationwide, including 1.2 million acres in the mountains of western Montana, where local officials were stunned and outraged at the deal."

full article here

Friday, July 04, 2008

Surrounded by Idiots with Explosives

I will be sooooo glad when this holiday is over. Whoever came up with the idea of simulating bombs exploding ('or the ramparts we watch) to "celebrate" the nation's independence needs their ass kicked.

I've had to listen to pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... all afternoon.

The adolescent next door and his friend has been lighting these things ALL DAY. They don't seem to have any adult supervision either. They've recently moved their rockets across the street next to the tall dry grass. sigh.

I don't really feel this way in my heart of hearts, but my surface ego wonders about ... oh never mind. Its just that so often kids don't learn anything until they get burned, figuratively speaking. Yeah. Figuratively speaking. That's it.

pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... pop... pop pop... boom... pop... pop... boom... Shouldn't they be running out of supplies soon? Maybe if I sneak over there and grab.....

UPDATE: 10pm and the smoke from fireworks is so thick you can't breathe. This year the city has stepped up enforcement a little more than in past years. I just heard on the news that someone had spent $700 on fireworks. ($700?!?) They lit the first one just as one of the fireworks patrols went by... and they caught 'em. They conviscated all the fireworks, but because the person was cooperative, they didn't cite him. I think they should have, but what would be a $100 ticket to someone who just spent $700 on junk. I wonder if this person gives much to charity. I know the Food Bank could sure use $700, or the Red Cross. Take you're pick. We've also had the first house fire because of fireworks. And that was before dark. Now that its dark it sounds like little Baghdad out there or something. There will probably be more fires.

(what a crabby ole biddy I've become. And if I really cared, I'd try and change. BWAH HA HA HA HA HA Did I just say that?)

It Was a Mad House... A Mad House, I Tell Ya!!

I needed to make a quick run to the grocery store. I usually go early but I have discovered that when you go early a lot of shelves need to be restocked, so today I waited. Another mistake. It was PACKED!!

People circling and circling in hopes of finding a parking place. Some parked where they weren't suppose to... but I lucked out. I got a spot close to the doors and I didn't have to circle once.

Inside was as busy as the parking lot. Probably more so. Besides all the customers, they were still restocking shelves which made the isles even more difficult to manuever. (I don't even have to mention the prices of things, right?)

I didn't have that much and there was a self-service checkout machine available. Mistake number two. There is one machine that is very touchy. Guess which one I used. Yup. My broccoli rang up as cauliflower and there was no assistant around to back it out. It was a $0.10 difference in price per pound and I hadn't gotten that much so I just let it go. The people waiting behind me were grateful. The next time I go in I'll munch on a grape or a couple of almonds and it will all work out in the end. No blood, no foul. Oh. Wait. Its no harm, no foul. Well, you know what I mean.

This picture has nothing to do with this post. It came with the pc and its a cool picture. Why yes... that pun was intended, thank you.

Hope you have a safe holiday weekend.
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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Gee, I Wonder What Happened to Them?

I wonder what happened to all those jobs that were suppose to have been created because bush gave the rich another nice tax break. hmmmmmmm. Gee.

As an aside, I find it amusing how the local republican politicians are using ads to get their name tied to Obama and how they are all for working together. They weren't doing that during the previous campaign.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Loose and Free (2minutes)

I like how he paints so loosely. Thickly.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

A Nice Photography Site

I came across Chuck Pefley's photography site and thoroughly enjoyed it. I thought some of you might like to take a peek, too.

I found my way to the site via Abe Lincoln's photography and writing site... its another great place to visit every day.

On to chit chat....

Today has started out swell. First, it was actually COOL this morning. It got cool last night and get this... with a breeze! I kid you not. So between last night and this morning the apartment is a reasonable place to be right now.

Today is my birthday. I usually don't think about it. Its just another day. But for some reason I am embracing it and talking about it. After all, its a milestone. 65 yrs. I wasn't sure I would make it, but I did. How about that!

I got two calls this morning. The first one was from my daughter C. (aka 'mom') wishing me happy birthday. She always remembers... even when I don't. Then shortly after that I got a call from one of her friends, Danielle. She was also wishing me a happy birthday. We had a nice chat... she (hubby and three kids) has just moved into a house after spending about a year living with her parents in a very small tiny house. I don't know how they did it without killing someone. Anyway, she's loving it. The house itself is a little small, but has three bedrooms and a HUGE backyard with several different kinds of fruit trees. Next year there will be a veggie garden.

In a few minutes I'm going to try to "meditate" a little and then spend the afternoon painting. (Meditate is in quotes because its more a matter of just getting quiet and hopefully centered. I need the MUSE TO COME KISS ME TODAY!)