28 December 2006

Ways to waste time

Not that I would want to waste time on Christmas vacation, but I found this list very fun. From PC World via "Future Tense" on MPR: The 15 Best Places to Waste Time on the Web.

#15 is What Would Tyler Durden Do?
"What Would Tyler Durden Do" is a blog focused on bringing you the latest gossip and news about rich and famous celebrities. And then making fun of them.

20 December 2006

I need a vacation

This fall has been nutty beyond belief, particularly at work. I sometimes feel like I've been on a merry-g0-round that has gone awry, going so fast you see only streaks of color rather than horses. It's been very interesting and often rewarding but my brain has left the building. Some examples:
  • My work on the computer is scary. I cannot spell, or type. I often put my fingers on the wrong keys and many times I forget to use whole words.
  • I forget what I'm doing many, many times a day.
  • I sometimes have to clarify things more than once because I forget the gist of a project or conversation. (For me this is highly unusual.)
  • I ask people to do things multiple times. I don't remember that I've already delegated the projects.
  • I forget what day it is.
  • I've forgotten my library account number. I've had it for almost six years and I've known it by heart for about as long.
So I'm writing things down more than ever, waiting for my blessed break which begins Friday.

19 December 2006


Sophie has an ulcer in her eye. It's healing up pretty well but in the mean time she gets much-loved ointment in her eye (three kinds!) three times a day.

When we were at the vet, the tech asked if we have an "Elizabethan collar" (at right). I said, "You mean the cone?" (below) Quite a misnomer. Sophie hates, hates, hates it.

15 December 2006

Ramen noodle recipes

On many product pages there are recipes to help you make more of the product, and hopefully buy more. The Top Ramen! site has the grossest combos I've found.
Try These Winning Tastes From Top Ramen! Each taste sensation is made with delicious, versatile Top Ramen instant ramen noodles. There's Top Ramen Olé, Top Ramen Pizza and Top Ramen Salad Royale, just to name a few of the terrific winning dishes. They're easy and convenient! Try them all to find your favorite!

14 December 2006

Wednesday Word (Lieblingswort zum Mittwoch)

I meant to do this yesterday so I'm using Wednesday (Mittwoch) even though it's Thursday (Donnerstag).
  • A favorite German word is "der Schluckauf*". It means hiccups. It really sounds like what it is.
  • A favorite English word is "lurch," as in "I hate to leave you in the lurch." The other day I was going to use "in the lurch" in an e-mail. It sounded weird so I looked up an alternative and found the definition, "in a vulnerable and unsupported position." I decided to stick with "lurch."
*Pronounced shlook (rhymes with look) owf (rhymes with the first half of "ow" as in the exclamation when you smack your shin into a coffee table.

11 December 2006

Rest in peace?

I'm having a hard time not celebrating the death of Augusto Pinochet. I wrote so many letters to him in the '80s and '90s (I'm in Amnesty International). Disappearances, murders, torture. He condoned and promoted it all.

I learned of his arrest, in London, in an elevator in Boston. I saw the cover of the New York Times lying on a luggage cart and nearly jumped for joy. Finally, justice would be served. But it wasn't. He was sick and frail but that's no excuse for not being punished for his evil deeds.

I believe that forgiveness is a good thing but he was responsible for thousands of confirmed deaths. After he overthrew Salvador Allende, the elected president, in a CIA-backed coup he began killing anyone who opposed him, or anyone he suspected of opposing him. I have a hard time not wishing that he burn for all eternity.

Description of the photo at right from the BBC:
A 1996 report blamed the regime for more than 3,000 confirmed deaths and disappearances, and later another report documented claims of torture by nearly 30,000 people. Mass graves continue to be found. Here, years later, a woman kisses the recently identified skull of her brother.

08 December 2006

Mess O'Potomac

Jon Stewart on the Iraq Study Group findings. Some highlights:
  • "I'm glad they got a study group together. But you know what? The test was three years ago."
  • "The report was delivered this morning to a visibly awake president."
  • Jon: "Bush showed that he had taken some of the report's lessons to heart." Bush: "The report brings some very interesting proposals."
    Jon: "You're not even trying anymore."
Go here and here.

Sometimes winter stinks

12 Days of Christmas

Another fun one from Rather Good. It's for Tommy's, the Baby Charity (UK): The Twelve Days of Christmas. My favorite day is one!

07 December 2006

Zip It

If only you could carry this around all day -- to use whenever and wherever the need arises.

Wristbands for everyone

If you're not chipper enough to wear a "Live Strong" wristband, or don't care to advertise for the eradication of a disease, there may still be a wristband for you. Courtesy of Archie McPhee.

06 December 2006

Simple and beautiful

I was looking for something else online and I found this picture. At the bottom it says, "Peace." I think it's just gorgeous.

04 December 2006

Ungratefulness personified

Nice thankfulness.
Fargo Hero Dog Up for Adoption

FARGO, N.D. — He's a hero, but now he needs a home.

A black lab named Hunter is credited with waking up a North Dakota family in time to get them out of their burning home early on the day after Thanksgiving.

But now Melisa Sherrard and her two sons are looking for someone to adopt Hunter. She says they can't keep him in the hotel where they'll be living for months until their home is repaired ... She tried keeping Hunter in the hotel for two days -- but says it just didn't work.

Christmas music

Over the weekend I loaded my Christmas CDs onto my iPod. (Weihnachtslieder in German. I love that word!) Once Dec. 1 hits I feel it's allowable. I have several CDs but one of my favorites is still a Christmas compilation I received from my friend Steph in 1999.

Some of my favorites this year: What Are You Doing New Year's Eve, The Secret of Christmas (has to be the Ella Fitzgerald version), Baby It's Cold Outside (I try to ignore the sometimes lecherous tone of the male voice), Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, In the Bleak Midwinter and Koppangen (in Swedish, which I don't understand but beautifully sung by Ann Sofie von Otter).

Thanks to Julia I have a new favorite -- Goetz Alsmann's version of Lasst uns froh und munter sein. He sings swingy Christmas songs. I've loved this song for years and now I can sing it all loungy as I go about the house.

02 December 2006

Dog accessories

In a recent post, I talked about pushing my mind in directions it normally wouldn't go. I was trying to do just that today reading an edition of Dog Fancy, a publication I normally mock.

Well, I do have a bit of crow to eat. There was a nice story about service dogs and an interesting one about the day in the life of a dog trainer. As a reward for this, I browsed through the ads in the back which are good for a laugh and few, "Oh man that's odd." or "That is so wrong."
  • A pet murphy bed, which would actually be very handy if you lived in a tiny Manhattan apartment.
  • A pet pouch, a la a baby snuggly. I was behind a person with one of these in the registration line at the Bark in the Park walk for the Humane Society. She gave me a look that said, "Yah, I'm a bit embarrassed to be wearing this."
  • Pearl necklaces or a $595 gold toggle necklace with heart charm.
  • Spendy but clever hide-a-crates.
  • Fun blue floral dog dress. Well, this would only be good if you could get a human matching dress. Shudder. This site, is the funniest/scariest (fuariest?). Categories under the clothing menu include: sportswear, casual dog clothes, jumpsuits and pants, lounge and swim, casual dog dresses and dog dresses (including the red floral picnic dog dress).
I have a love/hate with the dog clothes, especially. I think they're demeaning for dogs and twisted for their people. But, I love to look at them and laugh.

01 December 2006

Friday note from the Universe

Can you believe it's already December?
That it's Friday, again?

That as you read these very words, somewhere in the world there are waves crashing, eagles soaring, lilacs blooming, and friends laughing so hard tears are streaming down their faces?

That your life has been changing so swiftly?
That you're absolutely gorgeous, inside and out?
That you're new Health came so quickly?
That others who now want to More Health, emulate how you did it?
That peace, love, and happiness are flourishing around the world?

Yeah, I thought you would.

Winter weather forecast

On Sheriboo's blog today there is a rather interesting weather forecast. Worth a look!

2 for $3 burritos

I was in the gas station the other day and on the ATM there was a ad for 2 for $3 burritos. Do they come out of the little money slot?

Energy from dogs

Living in Berlin would be quite alright!

Berlin's Latest Scoop: Harnessing the Power of Dog Poop
Forget about Russian gas, German coal or controversial nuclear power plants. The energy source of the future is cheap and available everywhere on the streets of Berlin. You may have even had to scrape it off your shoes.

In Berlin, dog poop happens. Literally, all over the place. According to Berlin sanitary officials, 55 tons of doggie mess is generated on the streets of the city every day. And most of it is left unattended -- for other canines' sniffing pleasure, for children to play hopscotch around, or for senior citizens to hold their passionate diatribes against.

The German capital is an extremely dog-friendly city. Dogs attend gallery openings, jazz concerts, Sunday brunches and baby showers. But Berlin's dog owners are mostly of the let-somebody-else-scoop-the-poop persuasion. It's part of the laissez-faire attitude that Berliners are known for. One needs to have some sense of history. What's a little poo here or there in a city that had the iron curtain run through its very heart?

Yet anybody who ever walked down Wrangelstrasse in Berlin's multiethnic Kreuzberg district, or along Kastanienallee in the hipster paradise known as Prenzlauer Berg, is more likely to step into a pile of dog doo than run into somebody who would wish them a nice day.