Sunday, March 30, 2008

Quietude

Ah, the desk...the corner of it I am willing to display to you, at any rate. I love that I have sweet peas. In Texas! I had surrendered to the lack thereof in Georgia - it simply would never work.
And then...just a brave toss into the soil in late fall and a constant babying through the winter with towels draped at every frosty evening and...well, aren't they lovely?

The rose is, I think, Madame Alfred de Carriere. My adored Souvenir de la Malmaison is only now budding, slower than the rest. When I've properly mulched the garden again I promise a photo. Just now its all still a bit wintery blah with glorious dots of color. Too, I was really hoping for some pretty dawn or dusk light to shoot it in. Anyway, there you are - and in it you can see the limited territory - the printer hanging on the edge because I need to get a wee shelf for it under the desk. And the slipper...another victim of Ranger's shoe spree. I LOVED my horsey slippers...he plucked out their eyes and ripped off their bridles. The bastard.

Speaking of which - the Furminator has been on duty since we bought it and I cannot imagine the house without its use. See?

How in the world does so much fur come off of one beast? I love that photo - he looks feral and wolfish. But he was really just yawning, I think. And I love his pars. LOVE them and their Frito smell.

It was a pretty good dog wknd. The park yesterday where he fell in love with this lovely white thing that looked like a very large bichon frise. That dog was able to do the fastest turns and jumps! He would literally dart under Ranger's belly and jump over him to the side he started on before Ranger could turn his head. We were doubled over laughing.

Earlier this evening when I went to wake Trooper for his shift we did as we usually do, talking quietly and snuggling to make the awakening a bit gentler. And we started speaking of Muk de Muk. (Long story but essentially Max the cat's name was Mus [Maximus being the total]. And then he lost a toof so he is Muk, now.) We went to how he would have his Chateau de Muk over on Rue de Muk. And that led, of course, to his pennant and associated heraldry.

His would be a velvety par upraised, crowned with a fish skeleton and above it three cat tails like a fleur de lis. Of course. But, Trooper said, not too far away would be the Domain et Doodle. She would have a keep on a hill with a very large moat filled with all manner of dead enemies. Her pennant? Well, it would be a par upraised with one clar poking out and a glint coming off the tip. And dripping from that clar would be the reddest blood falling down and filling up, apparently, the bottom half of the standard. And the Doodleiers would safeguard and keep watch over the Chateau de Muk. (Think Puss in Boots and you know what we mean.)

Those are the sorts of things we talk about. In bed. What can I say?

And now...a link. My friends - well, I want to build this up A LOT because I happen to think her site, her skills with a camera and her ability to turn a paragraph into a vision are unsurpassed. I want to own about a dozen of her shots. And I want my stepdaughter to marry her brother-in-law. I know, he's already married. So maybe they know someone...eh! Never hurts to ask...with that I bring you The Pioneer Woman.

I dare you to start reading the story of meeting her husband. I started innocently enough at 9 or 10p. I got to bed at 3p. It was that good.

She'll be on the roll soon. I promise. And can I say how much I love the site setup she has there?! PERFECT.

Alrighty then...time to relax a bit, laundry to cycle and crappy TV to clear from the Tivo and then, maybe, I can get through a magazine or two. Now go - see that site and enjoy.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Random Crap

Well, this guy nailed it:
"With McCain, Hillary, and Obama in the race, all we need is one more horseman and we've got the Apocalypse."

And speaking of such...
Sigh....see, I bought them the night before. Went to bed. Got up the next morning, got the dog out and made a cup of coffee. By the time I'd sat down and gotten logged in that was what I found.
HATED the dog. HATED him. For about an hour. He got to go back to bed after Dad had his way with him and remained in his crate much of the morning.
Of course, I had to go shoe shopping again...
This week Ranger was at Day Care for a couple days with his best pal, Jasper. He'd come home so exhausted that all he could do was sleep. We LOVED it. And we're thinking one day of Day Care a week might be a good idea. It is so fantastic to know that we can have an evening of peace and quiet. Worth every cent.
It's tax time and about the only thing we had missing was a gun receipt. I called the location and was surprised at the curt response. Mind you, even in person there was one lady who was always very dismissive as she took your money. Maybe in that man's domain she felt she had to be hardened. Regardless, it always made me feel unwelcomed. Well, that phone call didn't help especially when I was told to call again tomorrow and ask for someone else. And so I did.
And yet - the same curt tone and lack of aid. "You'll have to come in." Click. Yes, and that was the other thing - no proper Goodbye - just a click. I HATE that! It's a rudeness that just sticks in my ancient craw. So I told the Trooper - YOU deal with them. I am done and I am spending nothing more with them.
So he runs over there after his class. A brief comment to his preferred salesman and the owner was pulled aside. As was the lady and the man who I was referred to. A private consultation was made and he was assured that future calls would be answered properly and more kindly. Indeed, the lady in question was much more open while he made his next purchase. Sigh...at least he traded it out - sold an old one he hadn't much use for and is replacing it with the new one. He is so lucky I like guns. LOL
And this...well...definitely NSFW but...insane. "Baddest MF'er in a cardigan sweatah".
Alrighty. I guess that's about it. Just waitin' on the weekend. WOOT!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

We Are Doomed

They cackle. They actually cackle over their own ignorance. And yet they are SO certain they're right. If this isn't clear evidence against voting I don't know what is. I didn't always feel this way but this time around? Heaven help us all.
http://jayjardine.blogspot.com/2008/03/eight-and-half-minute-case-against.html
"Jerry Springer nation is voting your life away one hoof-marked ballot at a time."

Monday, March 17, 2008

Tales From the Loony Bin

Have you been reading Crystal's tale of her stay with the White Jackets? No? Oh, do. Scroll, find the start and read on.

I suspect everyone has toed that thin line once or twice - whether driven there by life, tragedy, or even love. I once strolled along it like an avenue, not caring which step took me across it or how often.

And once...a friend came when needed most. I think what surprises me is how far I'd run across that line. Like I was streaking for the end zone - so to speak. And yet, in all that, I still knew to pick up the phone and just dial the numbers. It was almost as if I was remote from it, bemused and thinking that it was an interesting exercise but would avail me not at all. I was wrong.

Of course, writers are often considered a bit tetched. And I think there is something to it - that words are more friendly and comfortable than people. But do go and read...she is doing a fine job there...

Friday, March 14, 2008

"...the Skateboard Skool of Skribble"

Fantastic!
"If there's any real political pith to him it is more likely born of the MTV-Rock-the-Vote movement; an air-guitar socialism."

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Recap

It has been a terribly hectic time and I feel like I could sleep for two days straight. It was Trooper's 40th bday and we celebrated it like crazy. Things have been rather...is there a word to encompass it all? No...suffice to say that he has needed a way to drop all his mental baggage for a time and I picked the perfect thing.

I'll try to Youtube the video eventually but suffice to say he took the plunge and did the static line skydive with sheer joy. He sat through the training, raptly taking in the "square, there, flyable" chute discussions and finally it was time to load up.

Two other men were taking a very high jump so they boarded first. I had to actually call the man back to get a goodbye kiss! He was entirely focused on the event at hand. He laughed about it and then ran back to the plane. When he exited I could barely see the chute but it was quickly growing larger and moving in. The winds were quite high that morning and he'd been concerned but with the chutes he was using they were less worrisome.

I watched as his videographer wheeled in at speed - dropping from the height of a 4 story building to the ground on his feet in less than a minute. He raced to where Trooper was landing. He would have made a perfect landing but that a gust of ground wind snatched the chute and yanked him to his butt.

He was grinning and talking about it for the rest of the day. He called all his friends - everyone knew about it but him - and went on and on about it. I do not think I could have selected a better gift for him.

Later at dinner he received his other gift - a gorgeous Sgian Dubh. His final gift arrived while we were out of town so he received it a bit late. They're both quite nice - his remarked that his pendant (an ancient Roman coin from a legion of Marc Anthony's) was being struck while the hilt of the knife was already a couple thousand years old. We both love that sense of things - the sheer thrill of holding something so ancient.

Then it was off to Atlanta for a trip to the relatives and to see my stepdaughter. She makes the desserts at Ecco, a midtown restaurant that you MUST visit. We took his grandma and she gamely tried everything. Mind you, she's a pinto beans and cornbread type so having the grilled white asparagus, prosciutto de parma, grilled squid and fried goat cheese balls was an entire departure from her normal life. She made us get a copy of the menu and mark what we had. My stepdaughter selected everything for us, knowing best what to have.

And at the end she said we had to try the fennel and black pepper ice cream. Dear GOD, it was good. You have no idea. It sounds so wrong and yet it was fantastic! As were the decadent profiteroles...all in all it was an amazing night and the folks at Ecco were a dreamteam. Everyone was so kind to us, the GM stopping by as did so many others...it was a night none of us would forget, most of all grandma. LOL Just amazing...

Of course, the road trip was very hard on us. Not nearly enough sleep, a couple thousand miles, and worrying for our "son", Ranger. He was staying with the fine folks at Triple Crown and was spoiled rotten, I am afraid. We would call every other day to check on him. I suspect they think we're crazy. But I was comforted by the knowledge that he was in a very fine place and not at all lonely. And if Trooper says that I was weeping when we left you can discount that tale entirely.

I shed one or two, sure.

Ahem.

Anyway, it's all over but the catching up and I am exhausted by the work that yet waits. I tried to get it at least figured out yesterday but...it may be beyond my arts to repair. LOL Madness...well, at least we avoided the dreaded flu - we used alcohol cleanser like water everywhere. At least I hope we avoided it. I keep forgetting that my office is covered up in it...

That's it. Now, back to reality...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Shhh!

Don't tell Trooper but for his 40th today...

Airborne will once again be front and center in his mind.

"If I die on the old drop zone, box me up and ship me home."

I cannot wait to see his reaction!

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Yessss

Billy notes the new game - give Obama a new middle name.

I nominate Ammas.

The parallels are not precise, but the creeps that I get from this guy are just that ice-cold.


Indeed. Yessss. Just so. And for those who cannot see it - and the man - in that light...well, you are so lost in the woods that no one can save you.

There is one guy I'd vote for. Gunnery Sgt. Michael Burghardt

A New Man



I am generally a laissez faire type - everyone can do what they like as long as it doesn't impose upon or obligate another against their will. But I do wish that the concept extended into a sense of propriety; that more people could understand that doing the right thing vs. what they want to do or what will make them money is the only way to get through this life with a clean slate.

His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales was to all appearances floundering in his role as the second son. Not as easily liked nor as plainly handsome as his brother he sought out other ways to gain the admiration he needed. Indeed, this is why he was always my favorite - I, too, was an underdog. For a time, his ways were on a downhill run to disaster. (Does anyone remember the Nazi costume incident?)

It seems to me that he did what so many regal misfits of the past have done: gone into battle to prove themselves.

Prince Harry holds the rank of Second Lieutenant (known in the regiment as Cornet) in the Blues and Royals regiment of the Household Cavalry of the British Army, the lowest Officer rank just like his brother, Prince William. Harry was a tank commander, trained to lead a 12-man team in four armoured reconnaissance vehicles. After the decision not to send him to Iraq, he retrained as a battlefield air controller, the job he has been filling in Afghanistan. He was serving on the front line in Afghanistan [2] although he was pulled out on February 29, 2008 after the world media found out about his presence there and the British authorities became concerned for his safety and the safety of those around him. He had served in Afghanistan between December 14, 2007 and February 29, 2008, for a total of 77 days


Now, this service may have been precisely what was needed to lift the man from a position of bored dilettante into a man capable of being a true leader. It is obvious that his cohorts were happy to have him.

In May 2007 British soldiers in Iraq were reported to be wearing t-shirts bearing the statement "I'm Harry!": a reference to the scene in the movie Spartacus in which the survivors of Spartacus's army, defeated by Roman legions, are offered leniency by Crassus if they will identify their leader. Every survivor declares: "I'm Spartacus!"


As was noted elsewhere there was once a gentlemens agreement to never produce evidence of Roosevelt's condition. It was understood that it wasn't necessary. That there were concepts such as honor and integrity at stake. It simply wasn't DONE. And now...it doesn't matter who it harms nor what the cost may be - that story is NEWS, by God, and they will tell it.

I hope HRH finds another way to get back into the field. I hope he can use this to his advantage. And I dearly hope he doesn't become disenchanted with the concept of being a good man. I can assure you that any army in the world would be pleased to have him. I think he'd look quite fine with a Ranger tab...

Hold to your honor, Sir. And dare all comers - as some Texans once did - to come and take it. And I'd curtsy if I could, what with my Welsh blood demanding the honor...

Saturday, March 01, 2008

A West'ring Moon

This was just amazing. Nice way to kick off the morning...or end the day...


Shadow In Shadow from Alex Mukensnable on Vimeo

1,126 Frames with one frame taken every 4 seconds playing at 30 frames a second.