Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Month of Holidays

A month of holidays is about to end. I still love coming home at the end of the day and lighting up the tree. Just a couple more days left. When this is done it'll be time to buy a lamp.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Bus Rides on Holiday

I forgot to mention earlier this week that a bus driver took the wrong turn one morning. What a crack up. Halfway down a street we don't normally drive down she starts talking into the microphone, "Huh, didn't know this street was open. I think we'll just turn around and get back on the route. Might get you folks there sooner."

Every day something interesting happens. Good morning to each of you. Today shall be interesting too. So, tell me what interesting, abnormal, out of the blue, itsy-bitsy thing, or momentous occassion happened to you today?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Anything can happen...

Under the heading of, "Apparently anything can happen today." (My favorite quote by Mark Twain) today I was handed over $100 in bus passes from a co-worker that no longer uses the passes. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Downtown diversions

I had a tough day today. Well, yesterday too. As I was riding the bus home this evening it dawned on me there are diversions right here downtown between bus rides.There's Santa in the window at Macy's. There's the long line of parents with their children waiting to see Santa (straight out of the movie A Christmas Story).
There's the model trains running around the tracks in another window at Macy's. The model train window had airplanes, and gandolas and all sorts of cool stuff moving and spinning.

Seattle in general is doing the festival of lights thing. I walked blocks I don't normally walk. I stood outside shop windows I would never linger at any other time of year. I did change buses at a new corner. The people watching was far more fascinating than usual.

I forgot about the day and being beaten down with mediocrity...until I got home. Now I just want to go to bed. I've another two days of quacking with the ducks for this week, another three weeks for this contract. I feel poorly for these people I work with. This is turning into a hard contract to work through.

In the meantime, I've decided I really like golashes. I may need a pair...but only if they are pink.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Life is grand

Thank you to all who have remembered me on this marvelous of days in celebration of my birth. I would do it again... in a heartbeat. What an amazing year, and all the years that have lead up to this. Each year gets better. They really do. I would be pleased to be surrounded in person by all those I know and love. In the meantime, I feel love and surrounded by all those that have blessed me with their greetings.

Ah, life is grand. Life is a necklace of diamonds I can claim as wonderful moments. Each one special, each person special - shining with cut, clarity and color of personality. Thank you.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Two faced moon

That's not the moon you see...that's the clock I watch near King Street Station to see how long I must wait for my bus. I waited a long time this evening. My umbrella is above, someone else's bus is below. From here it looks like a two faced moon with a rocket beyond the orbit climbing to distant galaxies. Interesting, both faces tell the same time.

Reason for the Season

Let's just keep things straight during this crazy month. I snatched this from another favorited blog Noisy Astronomer

"The things I like about Christmas aren’t related to the
Christian story at all. The winter solstice, or the shortest day of the
year, in terms of daylight hours, was an important date in many ancient
traditions. This is now considered the first day of winter, but it also
marks when the days will begin getting longer, a welcome event for farming
communities and people who don’t like to come home from work when it’s
dark. It’s the day that the sun starts moving higher in the sky again,
thus it is unconquered, or Sol Invictus.
Winter festivities around the world
included Roman Saturnalia, full of gift-giving and merry-making (ancient eggnog
anyone?), Roman new year celebrations , which helped to give us indoor greenery
to celebrate life amongst the cold, and Scandinavia, which gave us the Yule log.
Later, as Christianity became more established, they
threw their holiday into the mix as to not be forgotten, and to reaffirm Jesus as the “unconquered son.”

Since Christmas was so heavily steeped in pagan tradition, it was rejected by the
Puritans who settled the “New World.” Christmas had mixed popularity in colonial
America but fell out of favor, along with other English customs like tea time
and Doctor Who, after the Revolutionary War. In this era, Christmas continued to
be celebrated in various forms in Europe where the
Christmas tree and Santa Claus became part of the holiday.

Christmas as we know it was reinvented in 19th century America
as a peaceful family holiday that
focused on children. The practice
of putting a Christmas tree in the house and giving presents to children from
Santa were incorporated at this time, and the holiday grew up to be one of
goodwill towards all mankind. It was declared a national holiday in

So really, when you look at it, axial tilt is the REAL reason for the
season, and we have a rich, complex history of traditions that have been
invented and reinvented over the years to surround that. I think that as
long as you don’t get wrapped up in cynical, crass commercialism, it can be
the most wonderful time of year!"


Yes! I am allowed a another legal holiday to spread good cheer - much like I do for Independence Day or Valentines (I take that back, I'm a grump during Valentines). I love the tree, the lights, the presents - heck...why not!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Relationship Mending among Strangers (Update)

I love Freecycle.org. I am having a fine time checking my e-mail to see what amazing things people are giving away for free. I've gotten some things free - chairs and a curio cabinet to date. I decided to post some stuff I don't want and see what happens.

The subject line reads: "Offer - Books: Relationship Mending". The books in question are two written by Dr. Phil, and one written by Harley or Farley or something. I wrote the post very clean - titles, hardcover with dust jackets, that kind of thing. That evening I got a couple responses from women that are interested (I have yet to have anyone come by to pick the books up). As I checked the following morning I saw a response from a male e-mailer. I opened this reply to read, "Did they work?"

I do believe this is a reasonable and well thought out response. The books are being given away free, wouldn't you wonder?

I replied, "Too funny. I wondered if someone would ask. The friend that gave them to me appears very happy. I am happily single. We'll have to take her word for it."

His reply this morning, " I figured you'd think I was funny or I was a jerk. I use the old fashioned relationship repair kit so now she's pregnant. Her mother even recently moved in with us."

I thought about replying that maybe he should have given the books a try first. Somehow that seems a moot point. MarlaJ will be stopping by tonight for the books. I hope she's not pregnant.

**Edit: Marla came by. No, she's not pregnant. :) **

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Quote of the day...

"I believe in creating memories." ~James.

This weekend's list of to-do's was wide and varied. Nothing of substance got done yesterday. I take that back: I had dinner at a dear friend's and did a load of laundry while we compared notes on grown children living in other time zones. Other than that...I think I took a nap. Today I am settling down to only do the stuff of memories. Homemade gifts are what my children are getting this year. They may be too young to appreciate what I'm sending. In less than ten years these gifts will be more holy than bibles. These gifts incorporate the information of generations of their own family. How much more personal can one get?

My kids (in a different time zone - figuratively and literally) prefer cash.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Music in the stars?

It seems astronomers have discovered that black holes emit a single note - Bb (B flat). Which makes me wonder at the Om being emitted by the mantras of the masses. What note is that at? Is it deep in our throats that a Bb is available? The sound I consider happy is not a Bb, but a happier note, like an A or a C. Is Bb the sound of the blues? It would follow, in my random logic, that a black hole and the blues have a common thread.

Of all the notes to be emitted by deep space I am not surprised by Bb. I had hoped for a lighter note, something denoting (pun intended) love or happiness. So then, what note does the sun, or the moon, emit?
Eta-Carina in our galaxy, taken with the Hubble Space Telescope. The star that exploded in 2004 and 2006 in the far off galaxy 2006 was likely a very massive star like Eta-Carina, of up to 100 solar masses, and doomed to death when its core collapsed to a black hole. (c) NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and Jon Morse

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Oh My God! It is frigid. It is cold. It is almost bitter. I wore an under camisole, two sweaters and a scarf over that. I had on slacks and wintersilks long underwear plus socks. I wore my long warm leather coat (to guard against those cold bus seats) and wrapped my heaviest pashmini up high on the back of my neck and around my lower face. Oh thank god I am not in the blizzard they are having in Wisconsin. If I remember correctly that was a major reason I left. Seems there will be five more days of these snapping cold mornings here in Seattle. At least it's been dry - amazingly dry and windless. I can do it. I can do it. I can do it.

Now if only my car can handle this. I drove around for half an hour after getting off the bus this evening just to warm it up. The neighborhood christmas lights made for a nice drive. These snappy mornings are a major drain on my car battery. I've been starting my car at 6:15 a.m. so that when I leave the house at 6:30 it is good to go. Mostly I've also been starting it at 6:15 so that if it doesn't start I have time enough to hoof it over to a bus stop that can get me to work on time. Today I was told that it is illegal in Washington state to leave a car running without a driver inside. Oh please, just let me get through these extreme weather days. I will get a new car battery on payday next week. I promise.

PS: My kitchen floor is too cold to stand on while my eggs cook. Jeesh, I hate wearing shoes in the house.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Seattle - 7 a.m.

3rd & Pine at 7 a.m.

Bus ride through Seattle yesterday and today is a tad bit chilly these days. This morning it was 21F/-6C. Thank goodness there was no wind to speak of. Yesterday I wore a skirt and a long coat. The long coat did me very well. Today I wore slacks and a short coat. Oh baby, those bus seats are COLD! Gloves are now a necessary evil. I love my scarf. I wear a big, wide, colorful scarf to wrap around my neck and stuff into the front of my coat. It's wide across the back of my neck. It's not even winter yet. I'm wondering about hat hair. I don't wear a hat. That will change. I don't know when, but soon.
Jackson and Main (?) at 5 p.m.

The buses this time of year keep on their interior lights only on the drivers side. The seats on the other side of the bus do not have the overhead lighting on. I find this interesting. I lot more people are getting on the buses and shutting their eyes, either relaxing before the day begins (for the morning crowd) or decompressing at the end of the day (for the evening crowd). Yesterday I was on the decompress side of the bus. Today I sat on the luminated side and got some reading done.
Alleyway from Howell and 8th

I'm so glad to have someone else do the driving. I leave the house at 6:30 a.m. and don't get home until 6:22 p.m. and that is fine with me. I start my car at 6:15 in the morning - two reasons. One is to make sure it will start, I'm having battery issues. If it doesn't start I still have time to walk to a bus stop and, with a couple adjustments, still get to work on time. Two is the car is reasonably warm to drive after 15 minutes of chugging away in my driveway to get me to the Park & Ride for the easiest bus to work.

This contract is only until the end of January or so, the coldest months of the year probably. I may be investing in warmer socks, or boots, or parka. Update will follow, I'm sure.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Freecycle - Amazing!

I am now the proud owner of two semi-lovely chairs that I previously did not have. Interesting things about the two chairs, they are both ladderback, rattan seated chairs. Even though the backs are different heights, the seating is at 18" for all of my chairs. My last apartment had such an ecclectic mix of chairs - each uphoslstery was fabulous - that the seating height did not match. I paid for those chairs...so far I've not paid for any of my current chairs. That may catch up with me one day.

Freecycle.org is a pretty good deal. I appreciate the moderators. Freecycle is set up as a posting "group" on Yahoo!. If a person wants to get rid of something - say a chair - and it's not worth much, or the bother of ebay or craigslist, they can post it on the freecycle posting board. Someone like me will see that as long as I can go get these chairs they're free. I did see photos before I responded. I e-mailed the posting person only, and not the whole group, and arranged a time to swing by. So this morning...I have chairs.

I'm a little bummed. If I had gone by about half an hour earlier I would have brought home a free loveseat too. It wasn't posted on freecycle. It was being hauled out of a house a couple blocks from where the chairs came from. I stopped to chat - to no avail. It's worth an effort once in a while to see what's going on. It was dark blue. I still think a red sofa is the way to go.

I'm keeping my eyes on craigslist too. Maybe in January I'll walk through another furniture store. Just for giggles.

Picked up a tall lighted curio cabinet this afternoon - unfinished wood - glass shelves - this stuff is amazing.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

General Life Conditions of a Wizard

I was going to share the fact that Tuesday my windshield started to crack. If I'm lucky it will stay low on the glass. I was going to share that I have a slow electric "leak" on my truck. If I don't start it everyday I require a jumpstart. If I unhook the radio I'm betting this problem will go away. But, then I would have no radio. I prefer to go out and start my truck every day. I was going to share that my children are making their lives difficult right now and there is nothing I can do to stop it, other than counsel them firmly to stop it.I don't know why all these things have come to the forefront today, or this week even.

Putting the mirror up to me it's fairly obvious; I'm not feeling well. Physically yes, spiritually not so much. I've considered myself an optimist for so long it is disconcerting to have things fester (?) below the surface. I may be a little scared at what I find if I pull at the curtain. We all know, "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain." When in actuality, he was just a person, as any of us. That poor wizard had hopes and aspirations that as a normal person, and not a wizard, were difficult to live up to. And yet, he made things happen. I've been working behind the curtain lately. I like it here. I don't want to come out from behind. I'd prefer to stay here and work on all my little wizardy projects for a while longer. I'm not "done" yet. Ahso, I go back to work on Monday. I better straighten up for the "real" world. Here I was beginning to believe I lived in the Emerald City (that's a joke folks, regarding Seattle's nickname).

I realize it's 1:30 in the morning, but my days and nights have been running together as my brain has taken over my body. I've released control of time in a normal scheduling sense. While I feel "good", it's made a mush of "normal" life. Normal life is calling.

My job coming up will be to integrate some time behind the curtain with the time I am required to work on other people's projects. Sustainability of one's purpose while sustaining an income is an excellent exercise in life. I'm experiencing a bit of dread that I may have atrophied a bit during this time off.

When the wizard was called on to show his true colors, he did okay. He stepped up to the plate. He didn't "save" everyone as he wanted to, but he got them started. An important tangible moment was the hot air balloon worked. He wasn't so bad, just flustered. Someday I'm going to have to read that book.
(Okay, maybe he was a pompous ass)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Jonesin' for a steak

This is just your run of the mill whiney post. I'm sure half an hour after posting I will be on to something else, forgetting that I have a whiney streak in me today. What you see above is my bacon cheeseburger with homemade potato chips. It's just not the same. It's not the same as walking into some restaurant with ambient lighting, being guided to an open and usually inviting table and being asked to please take a seat. It's not the same as someone coming around, just out of the blue, to fill your water glass. It's not the same as the basket of bread with honey-butter being delivered to the table just because. This bacon cheeseburger with homemade potato chips is not the rib eye steak I am craving right now. It is not the massive house salad or side of green beans, or baked potato or any of it. This homemade bacon cheeseburger with potato chips is not even McD's where one just drives up to a light up board, talks to a screen and then drives around to another window where one gets handed the most heavenly smelling paper bag.

This homemade bacon cheeseburger isn't even on a bun - although I like the dark sweet whole grain stuff better anyway. I am jonesin' to not eat at home. I am craving almost any restaurant. The funniest thing is, I can't bring myself to go do it. Cash is available. Time is available. I've been out driving twice today thinking about eating and haven't stopped anywhere except the grocery to pick up the burger. I've definitely got issues.

(The photo is to remind me I've got nothing whine about)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


I'll be back to work on Monday. I'm told it's a furshure thing this time, funds have been allocated and everything is a go. Somehow, by having an end date on my time I feel called into action. This afternoon I found myself walking/jogging until just before sunset (which is horribly, terribly early).
And came home to use the "bowflex" thingy for awhile. I love the way my back feels after even just a couple repetitions. If the Weider/Bowflex hadn't been left on my balcony I wouldn't miss it. While I've been off work this last stretch I've learned a couple of moves on it that always feel good. (Yes, I'm showing off a bit - hey, I'm even showing off to me!)
I've been consistently working on the book for my mom and the quilt for my daughter. Today, it felt good to get outside for me. I've only 4 days left, for me.