31 January 2006
30 January 2006
As I write this, Sophzilla is in her little dog bed, snoring away.
28 January 2006
Smell and memory pt. 1, see 12 Jan. 06
27 January 2006
A friend at work has a Jesus action figure. She is bringing in and or designing various things for him to wear. We're all having quite a fun time enjoying his latest outfits. The latest are nurse and fireman. I like the idea of Jesus schlepping off to work like the rest of us.
I just love Bono. Great band but also a real Mensch, a great humanitarian. Trying to make the world a better place, but not naively. Smart and doing good. Great photos here. (Click on the little photo under the
photo of Bono/Chancellor Merkel -- coolest day of her life!) To right, the two coolest humanitarians -- Bono and Groenemeyer.
Today Bono won the German media prize for his humanitarian work. Yay!
26 January 2006
23 January 2006
- Burned my finger on a pan while making eggs for breakfast.
- Arrived at work to find my area like a cooler. Kept parka on, turned on space heater and moved it closer to my desk.
- Tripped over space heater and, in an effort to avoid smashing the plant, smacked into the filing cabinet.
22 January 2006
Every time we have a family gig my camera is taken over by one or both of my brothers. During Christmas, everyone had a photo of a toilet on their camera. After Cale's party, I had a number of lovely "portraits" of both brothers.
Here's the lovely pudding we enjoyed this past summer in Switzerland. I brought some home and now there's just one packet left. Aack!
It's instant! If you buy instant putting here it's horrid. It doesn't taste like chocolate and has a werid aftertaste. Not this stuff. The soup and spaghetti mix (powdered) we bought were similar. Great flavor. And here, I wouldn't buy the stuff. Ick and full of salt. Don't get me started on Fanta mango. Non-diet soda that doesn't taste like syrup. Sniff. When can I go back?
Look at my lovely new light fixtures! So much better than the previous, low-light, incredibly dated fixtures. My Dad installed both of them. When I bought them I bought the highest watt bulbs they would take. I was used to a dark kitchen and that wasn't going to happen again. After Dad put up the ceiling fixture he called me in to take a look. I turned on the switch and yelled, "Holy crap! It's like looking at an eclipse."
18 January 2006
My friend Jeannie worked in Virginia for awhile. She made the mistake of saying something about the civil war being over to an older southern gentleman. She got quite an earful about how the war isn't really over, northern atrocities, etc. It was over a hundred years ago. I don't get it.
In books, fiction and nonfiction, southerners are portrayed as so different, independent, devil-may-care (that, or hillbillies). Granted, not everyone knows a drag queen named Chablis. But there's this whole southern mystique/intrigue. I get to wondering whether the mystique it's mostly true, partly true or only based on a select few. It doesn't keep me up nights but I do wonder.
16 January 2006
JoJo dished out the birthday cake and due to the wailing and crying, gave everyone supplemental pieces of cake.
I usually run across weird signs on my trips to Alex. On this particular sign, I'd guess that they probably mean, "committed to our customers." However, given the open invitation to fill in the blank, I choose to think they've all been sent away to the psych ward.
I bought this juice the other day. I saw "less sugar" and thought, "well that's a good idea." As long as orange juice has pulp and isn't from concentrate I'm pretty happy. This stuff tasted a bit odd so I read the ingredients. There is sucralose (i.e., Splenda) in it. For the love of Pete! Why do you need artificial sugar in orange juice? And chemicals are always a nice way to start the day. OK, end of rant.
15 January 2006
I had a bit of a panic this evening. I couldn't find one of my favorite blogs, Not Martha. There are Google listings but I keep getting "site not found." Oh bother! I did find a Not Martha site on Flickr. I wonder if this usurped the past site? There are many photos of weird and wonderful things, including pasta that looks like communion wafers. I wonder if they stick to the roof of your mouth?
Look at this beau-ti-ful closet! I should have taken a before picture. It was nothing like this! For a long time my office closet had been a tidy area. Then something happened. I got busy and suddenly, I became a messy person. I needed a bit of help to get this spot back in order -- I couldn't find things and that normally doesn't happen to me. It is, for me, a very bad sign.
Jude to the rescue! She came over today and helped me organize the closet. She is ruthless about organization and purging. And she loves to do this type of thing, especially if you give her carte blanche. It's quite cathartic to throw, recycle and donate things that I no longer use. Look at it now! There are now two empty shelves! It's fun to just look at this tidy space.
Speaking of closets, when I was in Germany I took over Gudrun's room (my youngest homestay sister). She temporarily shared a room and a closet with Almut (my oldest homestay sister). I had a closet to myself and it was not very full, seeing as I had to schlep everything I wore across the Atlantic. One day I was talking to Almut and I meant to offer her space in my closet since it wasn't very full. The German word for closet is Schrank. But in stead of saying Schrank, for whatever reason, I said Kuehlschrank. Instead of saying, "you can use space in my closet," I said, "you can use space in my refrigerator." Ah, the unintentional joys of speaking a foreign language.
14 January 2006
As you can see, I don't quite have the hang of taking pictures with my little spycam yet. (Sorry about cutting off your head, Hobbs. And this is the best photo of the lot.)
It felt like winter again today. I needed a hat to keep my ears warm. (And Sophie needed her sweater.) I not a big fan of winter but the past weeks of warm weather were just not right. Kind of like this summer in Switzerland. If you're above the tree line, shouldn't you be a touch chilly in shorts and a t-shirt? Yet another reason to hug a tree, carpool, recycle and avoid excess packaging. I hope this summer isn't like last. My motto was, "If I wanted Tulsa weather, I would move there." As usual, no one listened to me.
Jan. 13 - A German "animal academy" has specialised in teaching cats and dogs how to play the piano and chickens how to perform on a xylophone. (Reuters)Story and video here. They actually play nicer than my nieces and nephew, who incorporate more pounding and volume into their performances.
Also from Reuters, bun that looked like Mother Theresa was stolen from a bakery in Tennessee. Story and video here. God bless Reuters.
We're all just quelling with pride. There's a guy in Minnesota who wants to be governnor. And, he's a vampire -- Jonathan "the Impaler" Sharkey. Good luck with that.
Was ist heute auf der Fahrbahn? It’s been a slow month. Cars and vans mostly. No people or dogs lately.
12 January 2006
I discovered Richardson's book, Take Time for Your Life, late last year. I occasionally need a kick in the pants -- what's really important and what am I doing about it? You'd think I'd have that down by now. Considering the sales of her books, I apparently am not the only slow learner.
When I was studying in Germany a good friend wore Boss (I think that was what it was). During one of our breaks I went to Austria and soon learned that about every other Austrian man wore Boss. Every other person reminded me of someone else, who I happened to miss.
11 January 2006
I can't find words to explain the cold efficiency with which they worked. Here are some scenes from the movie to illustrate:
- Several times, the Jews were referred to as a 'storage problem.'
- The morality was not questioned but there were fierce debates about applying the spirit of the Nuremberg laws.
- Representatives from eastern Europe jockeyed for position to have their Jews 'cleared out' before any more were sent east.
- One of the reasons why shooting was ruled out, and the gas chambers embraced, was because it was demoralizing for the soldiers to shoot women and children.
To add to the horror, you learn what happened to all of the Wannsee participants. Many were brought before the Nuremberg tribunal but received small sentences or were released because of lack of evidence.
Wikipedia has a good overview about the conference and participants. It also includes a link to the meeting transcript in English.
There is also a German film, Wannseekonferenz. (In German with English subtitles.) Both Wannseekonferenz and Conspiracy are available at many libraries.
Thanks to Kim for the tip!
10 January 2006
Last spring I was taking my nieces to the flower show. As usual, we were listening to German music in the car. When this song came on Tori said it sounded like a sad song. I told her it was and explained the song in English. (It was written after Groenemeyer's wife died.) Many hours later Tori turned to me and said, in hear earnest, six-year-old, voice: "I know what would make that man happy again." I asked her what that might be. She said, matter-of-factly, "He should find a new wife." She'd obviously been thinking about this over the hours. She is one of the sweetest kids in the world! I'm blessed to be her aunt!
15 Things You Probably Never Knew or Thought About
- At least 5 people in this world love you so much they would die for you.
- At least 15 people in this world love you in some way.
- The only reason anyone would ever hate you is because they want to be just like you.
- A smile from you can bring happiness to anyone, even if they don't like you.
- Every night, someone thinks about you before they go to sleep.
- You mean the world to someone.
- If not for you, someone may not be living.
- You are special and unique.
- Someone that you don't even know exists loves you.
- When you make the biggest mistake ever, something good comes from it.
- When you think the world has turned its back on you, take a look: you most likely turned your back on the world.
- When you think you have no chance of getting what you want, you probably won't get it, but if you believe in yourself, probably, sooner or later, you will get it.
- Always remember the compliments you received. Forget about the rude remarks.
- Always tell someone how you feel about them; you will feel much better when they know.
- If you have a great friend, take the time to let them know that they are great.
08 January 2006
Today Christopher, the Hs and I went to Moti Mahal for lunch. Mmmmm... chicken masala, nan. Quite lovely! It's on a funny little corner on Franklin Ave. in what was likely an Ember's at one point. I'd highly recommend it!
I got to serve communion in chapel on Friday. It was such a very cool experience. There were many people there that day that I know and care about. And over and over I got to say, "this is Christ's blood, shed for you." The time was so joyful and ethereal. It was incredibly powerful.
05 January 2006
"They were going to bring balloons!"
America by Jon Stewart and The Daily Show is hilarious. (But mysteriously, nothing about hobos). With chapter titles like "Congress: Quagmire of Freedom," and "The Rest of the World: International House of Horrors," how could you go wrong. The book has lots of graphics and cool stuff. When you listen to the audio CD you get to hear tone of voice and sound effects. Better off with both.
04 January 2006
Worried about what had happened to her pension checks, Martha Kruse called up her pension fund. She hadn't received any money in April and May and was starting to have difficulties paying her bills.
But the 82-year-old woman from a small town near Hanover in northern Germany wasn't prepared for the explanation she got.
"Don't get upset, but you died on Jan. 28," an employee at the Bundesknappschaft fund told her, adding that she should send back any checks she had received since then.
Full store here.
02 January 2006
"Have you always wanted:Well, yes! That is exactly what has been missing in my life! I find this extremely funny to laugh at. But on the other hand, unless you've had some sort of serious lip injury, why, oh, why would you focus on this?
- Lips that look and feel full, plump and moist?
- Lips that hypnotize, mesmerize and make others hang on every word you say?
- Lips as sensual and sexy as the supermodels and
On the other hand, if you could actually hypnotize, it might come in handy.
01 January 2006
- What happens to confiscated nail clippers?
- Is there really such a thing as a water landing?
- How often do prisoners escape?
- What if you skip the census?
The photo at left is a icicle on my neighbor's house. Does a homeowner's policy cover death/dismemberment by icicle? It's on the second story so it would get a bit of velocity going by the time it brains you.
After you eat your yummy soup and or spread on lovely bread, you can browse the great selection of books and art, much of it devoted to themes of spirituality, peace and justice. ("Heaven, I'm in heaven...") They were having a big sale on their icon prints so I bought the Jesus one below, along with one of Martin Luther King, Jr. I find many pictures of Jesus insipid and some are downright creepy. ("Wow, he's whiter than I am. Must have had to use powerful sunblock in the Middle Eastern sun.") I wish they would have had an icon of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He's another favorite. It's his 100th birthday is in February. Be sure to make a German chocolate cake!