Saturday, February 22, 2020

Saturday 9: Buttons & Bows

Saturday 9: Buttons & Bows

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Here it here.

1) The lyrics extol the beauty of "rings and things and buttons and bows." When you're getting dressed, do you give much thought to accessorizing?

A. Not really. I wear my wedding band and alternate between a couple of pairs of earrings. I sometimes wear a pearl necklace or a silver necklace.

2) Dinah Shore sings that she doesn't want to live where the cactus hurts her toes. Sam can sympathize, as she has a blister on one of her toes from where her winter boots rub. Do you have any aches and pains to report this morning?

A. Yes. I have done something to my elbow. I think it is tennis elbow although I don't play tennis. It is probably from using the computer.

3) Dinah was such a popular entertainer that people were surprised to learn she earned a degree in sociology from Vanderbilt University. What is something we'd be surprised to know about you?

A. It took me eight years to obtain my bachelor's degree. I think I've mentioned that before, though. Hmm. Oh, I know. I play the harmonica a little bit. But maybe that's not a surprise since I play other musical instruments. Hmm. How about this: I prefer silver to gold.

4) Dinah's was the best selling version of this song, which was introduced by Bob Hope in the movie The Paleface. Hope had success early in his career as a song-and-dance man on Broadway. Are you better at telling jokes, singing, or dancing?

A. I am not very good at any of the three, really. I can sing a passable tune, so I will go with that one.

5) Both Bob and Dinah donated their time to entertaining the troops in WWII. It was during a USO tour that Dinah met and fell in love with actor George Montgomery, who was serving in the Air Force. They were married for 20 years and had two children. Their daughter followed her parents into show business and became an actress. If a young person asked you for career advice, what would you tell them?

A. Don't go into journalism.

6) Dinah was an avid golfer and even sponsored an LPGA tournament. She was also an excellent cook who hosted TV cooking segments. Which would you find more relaxing -- an afternoon on the golf course or in the kitchen?

A. How about I sit in the golf club house and drink a soda and read a book while someone serves me lunch?

7) In 1948, the year this record was a hit, Scrabble was introduced. Do you prefer word games, card games, board games or jigsaw puzzles?

A. I like them all. I am not sure I have a preference.

8) Also in 1948, LPs (33 1/3 rpm records) were introduced. Do you have any vinyl records in your home?

A. Yes. My husband and I both brought our collections with us when we married, and we have never rid ourselves of them even though we have nothing to play them on. Maybe a record player should be on the Christmas list this year.

9) Random question -- Which of these would you consider the greatest insult: to be called boring, untrustworthy, or stupid?

A. Untrustworthy. I'm sure a lot of people think I'm boring and I imagine a great many people think I am stupid, as well. But I hope no one thinks I am untrustworthy.

I encourage you to visit other participants in Saturday 9 posts and leave a comment. Because there are no rules, it is your choice. Saturday 9 players hate rules. We love memes, however.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Thursday Thirteen

Virginia is in its legislative session. None of the things I am discussing here have become settled law and may not. Until the governor signs off on it, nothing is a done deal, and even then, it can be undone.

People around here are freaking out because those horrible "ultra liberal" Democrats are in control this session. You'd think demons from hell had risen up and taken over the government the way people are acting. This is crazy thinking and people really need to get a grip on both sides of the aisle. We're all human beings with common causes and common needs. Figure that out and things will go along much more smoothly.

1. For 20 years, Virginia was under Republican leadership. They had an agenda. Now the Democrats are in control and all I hear are Snowflake Republicans crying, "The Democrats have an agenda." Of course they have an agenda. The Republicans had an agenda. Grow up. Learn to compromise.

2. Nothing that has gone forth legislatively to control guns is extreme nor will it impede on anyone's beloved 2nd Amendment rights. When did someone else's right to carry a gun become more important than someone else's right to life? The lines in the declaration are "life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness," not "shoot, defend, and fuck the rest of you." I am a gun owner, by the way. I don't feel infringed upon in the least except for when I'm in public and see some crazy scaredy-cat numb-nuts open-carrying his gun, "because he can." Then I feel scared because how am I supposed to know this person's state of mind?

3.  The Republicans oppose increasing the minimum wage in this state. According to my own state senator, only 1.3 percent of the Virginia workforce currently makes the Federal Minimum Wage or less (I guess those are restaurant servers, who don't fall under the Federal Minimum Wage), so what is the big deal? If it's that small of a number, why the opposition? It can't affect that many businesses if the number of workers is so small.

4. The Virginia Senate is looking at a tax on gasoline to pay for the roads. This is bad, the Republicans say. They seem to think it better to pay to have your tire fixed when you hit a pothole than it is to pay a small tax to keep up our infrastructure. I'd just as soon pay the gas tax as be inconvenienced by a blown tire or shattered shock absorbers.

5. The state Senate is also looking a "green new deal" - the Republicans apparently are allergic to "green" except for where it concerns money - and this is bad because it could (likely won't) increase the cost of electricity. There are so many "could happens" in the language my state senator uses to talk about this that it makes my head spin. He makes the worst-case scenario sound like it is the only outcome. But it isn't.

6. A tax on plastic bags. This only affects certain localities in Northern Virginia as an immediate tax and apparently other localities (like my rural area) get to decide for themselves as the bill is currently written. I don't have a problem with carrying my own tote bags and used to do that. My only issue with those tote bags is that the baggers load them down so heavily that I can't lift them. I have back problems so I stopped using them since I couldn't keep the baggers from stuffing them full. I would simply go back to using the tote bags and maybe I'd have to ask for help loading them into the car. That would become the grocery store's problem then, unless they can teach their baggers to listen when someone says, "Pack it light."

7. The Republicans also oppose a mandate for sick leave, which requires employers of 15 or more people to let people stay home when they have the flu. Frankly, I'd just as soon people stayed home when they have the flu. I shouldn't have to scan the check-out clerks at the grocery store to see which one is sneezing and coughing so I know who to avoid. People go to work sick because they can't afford to lose the money they are docked if they don't show up. This spreads germs and illnesses and drives up the cost of healthcare. I'm all for letting folks stay home when they're germy. Yuck.

8.  My state senator voted against a cancer bill for first responders. Firefighters and first responders are exposed to all types of carcinogens, time after time. This bill looks like it is going through, but no thanks to my representative. I do not appreciate the fact that he attempted to take this away from my husband and his brothers and sisters in the fire departments. Jerk.

9. Another senate bill allows localities to remove, relocate or do what they want with monuments or memorials for war veterans located in its public space, regardless of when it was erected. I think localities should be able to do what they want with their public space so long as it doesn't infringe on someone else's rights. The monuments in many cases are art and if moved should be preserved somewhere, I suppose, like the local museum. We are a very white county and our Civil War monument is an obelisk with inscriptions of the fighting companies. Does it offend our small black population? I don't know. It has never been an issue. It's been there so long I think most people ignore it. I don't like the canon that sits beside it, but then as a pacifist I wouldn't. However, I am not making any noise about it. The courthouse will soon undergo extensive renovations; some of those items may need to be removed anyway for these changes, and maybe then reinstalled - or not. The courthouse renovations are still under study.

10. Removal of the 24-hour waiting period for abortion is something that I applaud and I hope this goes through. I am tired of men legislating the personal lives of women. Do we make them wait 24 hours to get a vasectomy? No. Are there any laws that legislate the personal health care of men like they attempt to do to women? I can't think of a single one that is strictly male-oriented. Can you?

11. There is also the potential for the removal of "informed consent" language regarding abortion, which means that the 14-year-old raped by her uncle or her father can have an abortion without telling her parents. That poor girl is going through a hard enough time without the state's intervention.

12. There is also the possibility of the repeal of a photo ID requirement for voting. I don't have a problem with this, either, because voter fraud is not the big problem that Republicans want it to be. They've spent years trying to infringe upon voting rights and this simply rolls things back to the way they were.

13. There is also an effort in the Virginia House to allow Virginia's 13 electoral college votes to go to the national popular candidate instead of who Virginians vote for. I would like to see a study on this issue, one that ultimately does away with the electoral college. The electoral college was put in place to ensure that only "the right" people are elected. Until there is a national study underway to determine how voting should be best done in this country (fairly, freely, and hopefully one vote per person with mandatory voting), I'm not sure about this particular issue.

I think the verbiage that my Republican House of Delegate and my Republican Senator shared in my local newspaper this week in their "weekly updates" is revealing. That's where I took these items from, and I didn't do follow-up research to see exactly where the bills stand, so I am basically simply arguing against the way they worded these issues.

Their priorities are business, not people. Virginia is known as a great place for business. I'd rather it be known as a great place for people to live. I mean, what is our happiness rating? We're not ranked in the Top 10 and we live next door to West Virginia (and some folks want to join West Virginia), which is ranked at the bottom.

I want to live in a happy place. Can't the best place for business also be the best place for its people?

Thursday Thirteen is played by lots of people; there is a list here if you want to read other Thursday Thirteens and/or play along. I've been playing for a while and this is my 644th time to do a list of 13 on a Thursday. Or so sayth the Blogger counter, anyway.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Put On a Poncho

Virginia's weather this winter has been unseasonal, to say the least.

It has rained a lot.

The weather has been much, much too warm.

The grass is greening, we're at least two weeks ahead of schedule with the flowers, and the trees have budded out.

Will we have peaches? Apples? How will this affect my friends who are fruit tree farmers? Will my own lovely deciduous trees survive this perplexing weather?

This was not the year to put away your fall clothes. Some days it has been so warm one could wear shorts and be comfortable.

We've had a few below-freezing days, but I think I can count them on one hand. Does this mean the stink bugs will be roaring back with vengeance, staining everything they decide to spit up on? Will other bugs be abundant? How about ticks? Will Lyme Disease be as scary as the Coronavirus?

The gray days, of which there have been many, have forced me to use my seasonal light therapy doohickey nearly every day. I tend to be more depressed in the winter, you see. My doctor recommended this light therapy as way to help ease the darkness wrought by the lesser sunshine of the season.

However, it is hard to have sunshine with constant cloud cover. Sheesh.

The rain has made it difficult for the fellows who are helping my husband out by feeding our cattle while he is recovering from his surgery. They're having to battle the mud to get out in the fields. They are traveling in the ruts from days before. It's only slightly better than snow, and that's just because it's warmer. At least a cold, frozen ground would make getting back and forth less of an ordeal.

But we've not had enough cold to freeze the ground for any length of time.

I hear there is no such as climate change. I hear that folks don't believe there is any reason to make the air cleaner, or to stop chopping down trees, or to stop pollution. I hear that deregulation and ridding the US of the Environmental Protection Agency would be a good thing.

Because there's no such thing as climate change. We don't need clean air to breathe, and who cares what is in the water that falls from the sky, right? We can't be costing corporations money to clean up their act! We can't put people first in this country, no way.

We're the little guys. All replaceable.

Wonder what "they" will do when the only people left to replace us are the ones they won't let in the country anymore?

Sorry, got off track there. Not sure how a little essay on Virginia weather turned into a sarcastic climate change snit. Of course the climate is changing. Of course we need regulations and a vibrant, working EPA. Of course we need clean air and clean water.

Maybe we need more rain, to wash away the grim realities that half the country refuses to face.

Let's get wet, Virginia.

Monday, February 17, 2020

A Long Way

Happy Presidents' Day!

Or maybe it's Happy George Washington's Birthday!

Whichever it is, I hope you had the day off.

We're hanging loose here at the farm, with the husband still hobbling around after his ankle fusion. He's out of his cast and walking boot and into physical therapy. He's having pain, still, which is a concern, but the doctor didn't seem to think it was a problem.

I have not been pleased with the follow-up care with this surgeon. At the moment, I wouldn't recommend him, but to be honest I would rather die than have a Carilion doctor operate on me, so I suppose one must take my anger and condescension toward Carilion physicians into consideration.

At least I'm honest about it. I will be really upset when I wake up one day and find someone from Carilion has performed a heart catherization for that heart attack my primary care doctor insists I am going to have before I am old enough to have dementia.

Anyway, the saga of the husband's foot began on November 22, which was the day of his surgery. We're coming up on 3 months of healing up and being at home.

It's been a long process and much more intense than my husband anticipated.

It is has been exactly what I anticipated.

My husband had arthritis in his ankle and he was walking on the side of his foot. It was painful to watch. He'd been getting worse in the last two years but wouldn't listen when I suggested doing something about it. Finally, it pained him more than he could stand and this surgery was the result.

This is a video I took back in the summer to show him how he walked. I cringe every time I look at it. For some reason it is sideways, sorry about that.

Mostly he's been a good patient. Once the anesthesia was out of his system, he felt a little better. Then he was in a hard cast and he was able to get around on a knee scooter. After a while he grew bored so he started helping with the laundry. I did not complain even though I have never in my life seen someone fold towels like he does. I cringe when I see them but I don't say anything and I leave them alone. It isn't the end of the world if the bathroom closet looks odd.

The fact that he still has pain is frustrating for us both. I did not expect him to magically recover but he seemed to think that would be the case. He wasn't counting on having to relearn to walk, to have to have me standing there constantly going "keep your leg straight" while he walks across the room. He slips easily back into dragging it like he was before the surgery. His hip and knee are accustomed now to the odd limp, not the new gait created by the ankle fusion.

I consider this long extended home-stay to be a trial run at his retirement. Hopefully when he does retire, he will be more active because if I have to watch one more episode of Bitchin' Rides I am going to cancel the DirecTV without telling him. How many car shows can one man watch, anyway? Sheesh.

As regular readers know, I am not a TV watcher. I don't have it on all day when I am alone.

He has it on ALL THE DAMN TIME.

I shut the door to my office a lot now. I can't think straight when I hear the TV running or when I am listening for him. Even after three months, I am not used to having him in the house and I can round a corner to find him standing someplace unexpected and scare myself.

Sometimes, I confess, I've pitched a fit and told him to turn the TV off. Well, more like I demanded he either turn it off or I was going to throw a rock through it.

I listen to music when I'm home alone. I miss my music. He doesn't like my music, because it interferes with the TV racket. 

He needs a mancave. One that is not close to the house. Maybe a real cave with bears in it.

Just kidding.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Sunday Stealing

Sunday Stealing

Have you ever:
1. Broken a bone? Yes.

2. Broken a window? No.

3. Been on TV? Yes.

4. Had a friend who shared the same birthday as you? Yes.

5. Locked your keys in the car? Yes.

6. Accidentally sent a text or email to the wrong person? Not that I recall.

7. Sat in the back of a police car? Yes.

8. Fallen asleep at work? Yes.

9. Made a snow angel? Yes.

10. Ridden in an ambulance? Yes.

And other questions:

11. What is the worst household chore? Cleaning the toilet.

12. What is the worst color? Orange.

13. What is the worst pizza topping? Black olives.

14. What is the worst weather? Wind.

15. What is the worst self-care job (e.g. dressing, washing, shaving, teeth, toe nails)? Flossing.

16. What is the worst game? Horseshoes.

17. What is the worst school subject? I liked them all, even math, so I don't know.

18. What is the worst animal? A stubborn mule.

19. What is the worst season? Winter.

20. What is the worst TV show? Anything on Fox.

I encourage you to visit other participants in Sunday Stealing posts and leave a comment. Cheers to all us thieves who love memes, however we come by them.