Thursday, August 30, 2012

 The Blue Moon Tavern has been around Seattle for as long as I remember.Here's their take on the massive art installation called The Hammering Man that is in front of the Seattle Art Museum.  They call theirs The Hammered Man and instead of pounding a hammer in the air, it is pounding back a beer.
And here is the main reason I am in Seattle this week - Dr Joesph Zimmer, dentist extraordinaire!  And the other beauties are Karmen, who did all the rest of the tooth work today, and the Front Desk women who run all the no-tooth part and are just so soothing both when you arrive all worried and when you leave all numb.  Good Times!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Dentist or Denial?

I guess I could write that I'm in denial - except that I tried four different ways to spell "denial" before I gave up and let Spell Check help.  And I hate it when I have to do that - like a stubborn toddler who insists on pouring their own milk.  I know I can do it!!  That's what this is all about - what I am sure I can do that maybe I shouldn't.  A week ago, I was sure I could be enough help moving my kids from one apartment to two new ones, that I told my daughter not to worry and just drive up to Berkeley to start classes.  Her brother and I would get all the rest of her stuff moved out of the old apartment in Southern California, and in three weeks when her new place is ready, we'd load up a truck and drive her stuff up to her.  We got moved out of the old apartment by 8:30 am, with less than an hour remaining on the lease.  That was the 21st.  Yesterday was the first day I didn't wake up in the middle of the night needing another ibuprofen.  Yes, I'm officially out of pain.  When did I get so old and decrepit???  When did I need a week to get enough sleep to make up for staying awake all night just once???
So - have I learned my lesson?  Am I going to hire someone to load up that truck for me next week?  Probably not.  I'm not getting older - I'm getting better!
PS: I blame my spelling lapse on the Country song - I can't think of denial without thinking of Cleopatra, Queen of De Nile!

     Since I promised pictures, here's a beautiful flower by the sidewalk which I snapped while walking to a burger place called Five Guys.  And here is my burger.  And one of their Grilled Cheese sandwiches.  They just turn the bun inside out and grill it.  Very clever.  Tonight I'm in Seattle going to the Geeks Who Drink Pub Quiz at the Lunchbox Laboratory - home of the best Hamburger in the world.  Seriously.  The Food Network will go as far as proclaiming it the best in Washington State - but my extensive independent survey confirms that there is no better burger on the planet.  Then in the morning, I go to my dentist - the real reason I'm visiting my old home city.  I can hardly wait!  Joseph Zimmer - eye candy and intellect - and the best dentist around.  Too bad about the needles and drills, but then no one is perfect.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

It's All So Easy!

I have had quite a few posts lately without pictures. And I have missed a day or two.  The truth is that I lost the cord that connects the camera to the computer.  Well, it turns out that you can just pop the card out of the camera and insert it in a slot on the side of the computer.  Pictures tomorrow!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

I Love Breakfast Best When Someone Else Cooks It For Me

Dave Seminara writes an interesting blog - quite self-serving (as opposed to self-centered, which is the purpose of most of my favorite blogs).  I just read his take on the free breakfast that many hotel chains provide.  Since he titled this entry: Hotels That Serve Glorified Prison Food For Breakfast, we can assume that he either is frequently incarcerated, or not a fan of the free breakfast. (Spoiler: It's the latter.)  
Since my husband travels constantly for work, he has one of these breakfasts at least 200 times per year.  In all these years, he hasn't complained about them even once - except for when they refill an old coffee urn with hot water for him to make tea.  (A complaint not addressed by the article.)  Believe me, there is nothing worst than getting ready for the first glorious mouthful of morning tea (brewed with a favorite brand bag brought from home if Lipton is all the hotel offered), to find it mingled with coffee.  Yuck! Yuck! Yuck!  (And he actually likes coffee.)  (Anyone who knows me knows that I absolutely dislike the taste of coffee - not in coffee ice cream, coffee liquor, coffee candy, chocolate desserts, mocha anything - and certainly not in tea.)  So now he just goes into the kitchen and gets it from the boiling water tap if the water offered has that stale scent.  Problem solved and no need to write about it. But my point, and I do have one is that the comments go on about how everyone needs lose weight and it can't be done if you eat the foods offered for this free hotel breakfast.  Well, have you seen my husband?  Suffice it to say that he has no need to lose weight.  (Or gain it - he is perfection!)  Even eating these breakfast the majority of the time.  Will America ever ease up on the weight issue?  Do you really think you are helping?    

Friday, August 17, 2012

I Miss Hope - Amanda's Friend Hope, That Is

One of the sad things about Amanda's move to Berkeley is that her best friend Hope is going to UCLA. I already miss her.  She is a writer and we have great discussions.  A reoccurring one is the unnecessary evolution of so many English words - mainly that it is so sad to lose a perfectly good word when its meaning gets changed due to its continual incorrect usage.  We chose "quotidian" the last time.  Here is a word that has lost the component that makes it unique.  If you are going to use it to mean mundane or boring - then just say mundane or boring.  If you think it just means "every day", you will miss the point in anything written pre 2000.  Because when an author said "he delivered the quotidian kiss that kept their marriage going" he was not critiquing the kiss as boring, but saying that it was required daily.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Catholic's Dilemma - Now Which Cousin Are You Again?

Got a phone call from the daughter of one of my mother's many, many cousins.  (Really!  There are at least 50 first cousins and when you add in the seconds and the removeds, {a word Spellcheck will never accept, but exactly what I meant to say}, that number goes right past 100.)  This one particular cousin was one I don't think I ever met since he died when I was pretty young, and I know I've never met his daughter.  She was very interested in tracing the history of the French half of the family and had gotten as far back as the 1700's.  She asked about the possibility of my possessing any really old pictures of our family.  I explained about the plane crashing into my grandparent's house and how somehow the pictures hadn't survived.  Fire or flood, the pictures are always the first to be destroyed.
But, back to her phone call. our  It wasn't until we began contrasting our branches of the family tree, (her branch was more into real estate, mine was farming and music), and she mentioned that her father was originally an actor, that I figured out exactly who her father was -  John Meehan, the art director on the Leave It To Beaver Series.  Wow!  I was always impressed when my mother pointed out that her cousin worked on the show.  He also won three Academy Awards -one for The Heiress, one for Sunset Blvd, (you know, the one with Norma Desmond in it) (Norma Desmond being big enough stuff that Carol Burnett did a parody of her), and the mind-blowing 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea.  Good Times!
Just found a cute afterword - in Hollywood his nickname was "Frenchy".  How would we know?  To my mother and his other cousins, that would have just been redundant!

Happy Birthday Julia Child! If You Were Alive, You'd Be 100!

Julia Child had a kind of magic, which anyone who has met her knows.  In college, I met lots of people who had worked on her TV show after they returned to California.  It was quite the pedigree for anyone living in Napa, my favorite cheap trip with all the free wine disguised as "tastings" and friends from South Lake Tahoe High School to stay with.  (These days it's a delightful surprise to find a tasting room that doesn't charge a fortune for wine you might not like.  I'd rather spend my $10 on a movie and small popcorn.)  But my point, and I do have one, is that when I eventually met Julia Child at the Washington Athletic Club in Seattle, I could see what they meant.  She was so quick and interesting.  We spoke about Salsify, a favorite of my Grandmother (which she pronounced Salsifee, with that lilt at the end that was typical of her) (her, being Julia Child, not Grandmother) also called the Oyster Plant, which I tried to grow (unsuccessfully).  She wasn't worried about getting things to grow, she was just interested in cooking them.  And if I ever get my hands on some Salsify, I know how Julia Child would prepare it.  (Spoiler alert: It involves Butter!)  

Now This Was Interesting - To Me, At Any Rate

During the Summer, my daughter took a class on the history of California - mainly Southern California, that is.  My mother's family has been here a really, really long time.  My father's family lived in Wisconsin, where he was first generation American.  And both my parents have extremely uncommon (although properly ethnic - Father's Czech, Mother's French) last names.  So Amanda knew immediately that she had found something out about my Great Grandfather that we hadn't been told by my mother.  Something my mother didn't even know.  His death in 1938 (or was it 1932?) was listed as a result of the flooding of the Santa Ana River.  We'd heard many stories of the flood, but not this.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Need To Learn Korean

Fabulous Sunday here in Southern California!  Had a terrific day at Disneyland.  Shortest waits of any sunny day in recent years - as a matter of fact, as short as the waits that characterize the rainy days that have become my family's favorite times to visit.  And then tonight, I found that there are two Los Angeles channels that show Korean Dramas with subtitles.  Anyone who knows me knows that I can't resist a Korean Soap Opera!  (But this is a little tricky, because I had been convinced that all subtitles on American TV would be in English, only to find many Korean soaps have Japanese subtitles.  That won't work for me. although my daughter studied Japanese before she discovered her love of French.)  But I have decided it is time to get the Rosetta Stone Korean version.  I just can't waste the time doing nothing but watching the TV screen.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

If It Really Is My Fault, How Do We Choose Where To Move When My Husband Retires?

I have endured a good deal of teasing by my new Tulsa friends about the surprising things that have happened in my short tenure.  I have honestly believed that it isn't my fault, but my first month in Tulsa had the worst snow storm in anyone's memory.  My first Summer in Tulsa was the hottest in history - with something like 10 days in a row of 116+ degree temperatures.  The worst earthquake in Oklahoma history followed.  And the only thing that has kept this Summer from being a record is how bad last Summer was.  Anyone who know me knows that I have never complained about the heat.  (Except for the Summer I was pregnant with Amanda.)  But I gave up on ever getting enough sleep to function in Tulsa, and with John about to spend two weeks on the road, it could only get more difficult.  (Anyone who regularly sleeps with someone knows how difficult it is to sleep when that someone is gone - in fact, the only time it is harder to get to sleep is when they return after you have rediscovered the delight of having an entire bed all to yourself.)  So I booked a flight and arrived in Southern California on Tuesday.  Just in time for an Earthquake - and the best night's sleep I have had all Summer.  (I have been in plenty of earthquakes - it was more common to have a month with an earthquake in than not when I was growing up - but these quakes had the sharpness that only a really close earthquake has.  Very short and very sharp.)  There were eight aftershocks during the night and I didn't feel a one.  Slept like a baby.
But my point, and I do have one is that when John called me on Wednesday the first thing he said was, "It's you!"  They almost had him convinced at work that he had caused all these bad things when he moved there.    But he was nowhere near California, so he knew that I must be the cause.  Made him feel a lot better.  No totally sure how I feel about it.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Is It Too Hot To Write?

About a year ago, I was stunned to realize that it was too hot in Tulsa to snuggle!  This year I'm wondering what it isn't too hot to do, when 110 degrees seems normal.

My Husband Is A Classy Guy!

While I was in Fort Worth/Dallas for my birthday, I took a long walk, since it was so refreshingly cool - less than 100 degrees.  No kidding - I don't think it got over 99 all weekend.  Such a relief from the 114 of Tulsa.  I found this place for lunch by smell.  Wonderful food which you could smell from a block away.
I have often said what impeccable manners my husband has.  It's true that you can take him anywhere and he will fit in.  Classy guy!  One of my favorite things that he does which I consider very classy is that he folds his socks into pairs.  None of those sock balls for him.

Friday, August 3, 2012


Do you remember when Dads whistled?  I mean whole songs.  As in the 7 Dwarf's Whistle While We Work song?  There was one song called Poor People Of Paris that was mainly whistling.  I miss it.  I blame the fluoridation of water.  Well, what else?  I could be wrong.  Actually, I quite like being wrong - it relieves the monotony.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

West Coast Native Brings Hawaiian Shirt Friday To Oklahoma

John has made it his mission to convert his office to Hawaiian Shirt Friday.  So far, I have found the Goodwill to be the best spot to locate $2 shirts, but was a little short on women's.  Then I visited Catherine in rural Oklahoma and after a yummy Thai lunch, (she treated, for my birthday!) (Thanks, Catherine!) checked out a couple of stores with her.  I found 5 women's Hawaiian shirts and 4 men's.  And had some laughs at a lot of "blast from the past" fashions - some of which we both admitted to having worn.  Mainly because of their job appropriateness.  Plenty more to say, but it's been a big day and I don't think I'll be awake much longer.  Could have put up some pictures of those shirts, but if you've seen one Hawaiian Shirt, you've seen them all!