Sunday, October 31, 2010

In Honor Of Halloween

A Great Site:

Today’s tomb belongs to sculptor Barney Bright, who reminds us all: death need not bring an end to the beautiful and life affirming process of doing it doggy style with a hot young chick. (Photo by Holly Crisler. Thanks, Holly!)

Today’s tomb belongs to sculptor Barney Bright, who reminds us all: death need not bring an end to the beautiful and life affirming process of doing it doggy style with a hot young chick.

(Photo by Holly Crisler. Thanks, Holly!)


Reasons I want the rental house I saw a week ago...

Photo Credit:
Beautiful site. I highly suggest a visit.

The house and yard are yearning for me to make Rock Towers. The rooms are aching to be blessed. The garage wants cars parked in it. The yard is waiting for me to rake it. The windows want me to wash them. And the bus stop is only a block away.


I've spent the evening cleaning out a box labeled Photo Crafting and I am inspired to get rolling again creatively. I found a photo taken at a Scrapbook Convention back in the day (?) when I was with Romar. The photo is of me in front of the DIY Channel cameras demonstrating the Kaleidoscope Kit I had pulled together (goodness, I was chunky). While the spot ended up on the cutting room floor, it was still a peak moment for me. I pulled the photo out of the box and taped it up on the wall next to my Marathon Bib numbers. I'll be keeping my eyes open for the four color brochure of the Sugar Eggs I made for Easter/Spring. I ran that business for three (maybe four?) years. It didn't make much money. But, I was in the black for two of those years. It's time for another great moment.

I know, I know, I've got quilts to finish and a book that's two thirds done. I just finished the book for my mom of our travels in Europe we took a couple years ago. Like I don't have enough on my plate. But, when I am creatively excited life is just so much more interesting. I still want a guitar again. And it looks like I'll be moving. I still need a job to keep a roof over my head...

It's one o'clock in the morning. I don't stay up this late unless something is interesting enough to hold my attention. There was a time when my job was this interesting. There was a time when I was working my own business this late into the night. Tonight is was paper. Just little three inch squares of paper. They look so cool now that I've fussed and folded and mooshed them all together!

I just want to know...where's my trust fund? I do get tired of spending my nights completing job applications.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

it just takes one

Amazing how one person's off-hand comment can change my whole motivation. At work, at this blog, on the bus, in prayer...everything is affected. And that person doesn't even matter in the overall scheme of things. So why the h-e-double-hockey-sticks does that one remark stop me in my tracks? I deleted it from the mail on Monday...but, I seem to still be carrying it.

Time to set it down now. Whoops, didn't mean to carry it this far. [pat it on the head to be good now, and walk away.]

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Baron's Supper

Walking in the woods of the Great Undiscovered Forest a maiden, tired, hungry and alone came upon a Woodsman on the path. He saw her plight and recommended to her a small cottage just beyond the curve of the path. "Go there. Be warmed and fed. You will feel better." They each went on their way.

It was a small cottage dwarfed by giant evergreens and lush ferns. The maiden was thankful to see it was such a lovely cottage. The windows shined out a glowing light of warmth from inside. As she approached the door swung open slowly on silent hinges. No one was about, yet the maiden entered on the advise of the Woodsman.

Inside a fire crackled in the hearth. A table was set quite simply for supper. The maiden sat at the table, glad for the chair. Suddenly wondrous light shown from nowhere and the cottage became a castle banquet hall. Servants in bright, crisp dress with efficient, friendly manner loaded the table, now seven times the size it had been, with fruits and meats, wine and water. They continued to bring all manner of dishes and drinks. Candles appeared along the length of the table. Lush flower arrangements interspersed with the wealth of food that filled the expanse.

The maiden found herself no longer alone. At the other end of the table a Baron, full proud of all that was laid before them, had come to sup with the maiden. He merely smiled at the maiden as the food and mead continued to be brought on. A fine linen napkin was unfolded onto the maiden's lap. Then the staff silently moved to the walls of the great hall to wait.

The maiden had never seen a finer spread. She had never been attended so completely. The food and drink, the crystal and silver all looked sumptuous and bright.

"Please eat." said the Baron.

The maiden took up the fine silver fork laid beside her and gratefully began to eat. The first butter laden glistening bite of beautiful morsel was good. Yet, she was surprised at the lack of flavor the food provided. Her brow furrowed ever so slightly. An attendant left the wall and took away the dish. She was served another dish, this one of tender melting meat. As she took a bite, sure this dish would be resplendent with flavor, she was again surprised at the lack of taste. To hide her dismay she took a quick sip of water. But the attendants had seen it was not to her liking. One took away the dish. Another brought on a new plate. The maiden wishing not to offend her host looked to the attendants and gestured not to take her plates. It's not that they were bad, they just had held such promise in their steaming buttery or fresh oven smells that the lack of full flavor was surprising. The maiden silently wondered, "Is it simply a lack of salt?"

She tried several more dishes and for each one she was unable to hide her disappointment. At each one the attendants carted off the offending food and brought a replacement. Though the candles burned bright and the great hearth flickered warmth, the food was want. At each bite the maiden became more and more convinced a simple remedy could be had. Yet, she saw no salt upon the table. And there was no talking from the Baron or his servants to make an inquiry.

The Baron appeared pleased to have a partner for his meal. He smiled as she tasted each bite, but he said nothing. Nor did he seem to notice she was not able to take a second bite of anything laid before her. She was grateful for the meal, but searching for something, any dish, to compliment the Baron's surely fine chefs.

One by one the marvelous foods were removed from the table. As each plate was taken the room grew dimmer. The table grew smaller. The flowers and the candles simply disappeared from the shrinking table. The maiden wanted to try no more dishes. She did not want to continue the offense surely she must be causing. As the table shrank the Baron grew closer. Finally the maiden spied just at the Baron's elbow a small salt cellar filled with white sparkling crystals, with a fine small silver spoon. This caused her to smile. The attendant, misunderstanding her smile, let her finish the dish in front of her. She smiled to know there was salt on the table. She smiled to know a simple remedy was at hand. As she finished her plate it was taken away and another dish was laid before her.

The maiden looked expectantly at the Baron hoping to gain his attention so that she could speak. He smiled at her and waved his fork in good cheer then looked back to his plate to assess his next bite. He was chewing quite loudly, though proper, and did not hear the maiden clear her throat.

An attendant served her ices and sweets to balance the meal. Coffee and warm chocolates were brought. They were good and charmed the maiden with their sweetness. The meal was winding down. The maiden enjoyed what was left of the flowers and candles that were left on the now small table.

It appeared time to leave. The maiden refolded the napkin from her lap and set it beside her on the table. Her journey, it appeared, was waiting for her outside in the Great Undiscovered Forest. There was no reason to stay for any more dishes if she could help it. Here the Baron looked up startled at the maiden making ready to leave.

"Will you not stay for more?" he asked.

"Nay." she spoke most politely to conceal her dismay for the meal. "My travels await me outside your door. I am comforted with your banquet, but I fear I may be imposing on your good graces to stay. I am most honored to be included in your supper. "

"You did not enjoy the meal? Was everything not as you wished?"

"Oh fine sir, the food offered was most resplendent. I have never been so well attended. Forgive me for speaking plainly, it was want for a few grains of salt to make it pleasing for my taste. I mean you no disrespect. Only that I may continue my journey now as the meal has come to an end."

"Salt?! You would throw away a fine meal with attendants and warmth and attention to every detail but one? You entered my fine hall to find fault with this offering? Salt? A few grains of salt is the bane of all this?!" The Baron swept his arms aside to take in the great hall and fine array. His elbow there toppled the salt cellar off of the table. The fine small silver spoon clinking on the stones and the grains of salt sizzled as they bounced from the floor and spread at the Baron's feet.

The maiden tried to rise gracefully from her seat. Her face was burning in contrition at being so discourteous and ill-mannered before the Baron. She wondered at herself. Who was she to not be grateful for all that was offered? Yet, she wanted no more bland food offered with no banter and nay, without a few grains of salt now lying strewn about the floor at the Baron's feet. He, in turn, stomped over the once clean white grains as he pounded in disgust from the hall.

The maiden turned to leave, ashamed for her unkind words. The great hall was once again the simple small cottage room she had first entered. She stayed a moment to regain her composure by the warmth of the small crackling fire in the hearth.

"I do not know at what moment during the magnificent meal I would have been allowed to ask for that which was missing." she consoled herself silently. "Nowhere during the meal was I asked if what I was offered was to my liking. I know that what was offered should have filled and satisfied me beyond question. But, no one questioned anyway."

Having no means to make amends the maiden left the cottage, quietly closing the door behind her. The Baron, now looking more like the Woodsman he was, stood on the Great Forest path just outside the cottage. He was waiting for the maiden.

"Thank you for coming." he said. He leaned toward the maiden and gave her a most lovely kiss. It tasted salty.

Family Challenges

My little brother has e-mailed me the challenge. He made it clear that this is serious business. Actually, he posted it to me as a "Dare" (as in double-dog-dare me.). This was a little daunting when I first read it. (Little Brother - hahaha, damn that's funny. He's a full foot taller at least.)

The challenge, the dare, the project - should I decide to accept...gain entrance to the Suzzalo Library on the University of Washington campus. Pshaw! Easy-Peasy...I'm in, dude! Will send photos, so there!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Welcome to the Metro Fitness Program

As is my usual MO when I see my bus coming I break into a jog. Somehow just seeing my bus, well, it’s hard to not want to catch it. I have the morning schedule worked out. If I leave the house at 6:10 am I don’t need to run for the bus. I don’t need to stand around the kiosk for very long either. Once I get into downtown I have to keep my eyes open. If Mr. M got on the bus when I did then it takes some additional time to load and unload the scooter that is his wheelchair (damn, those scooters are fast). If Mr. M is not riding the bus then I can get an earlier connection, but not always.
Coming home is a completely different game. I never get out of the building the same time twice. The buses going past work at the end of the day are more erratic than those in the morning. The schedule is posted at the bus stop; but we all know that is for show and has no basis in reality.
Yesterday I was strolling on the sidewalk after work making my way to the bus stop when I see my bus coming up the street toward me. I’m on the wrong side of the street and I have at least a half a block to go before I get to the designated stop. I start jogging. I cross the street and jog a little faster. I come up to the bus waiting for me at this point and the driver says, “There’s one trouble maker every day. You must be it.”
I pay my fare and hoping I am in good snappy retort mode I reply, “Nah, I’m just trying to get my exercise in.”
“Ah, you’ve joined the Metro Fitness Program. Good to have you on board.”
Some drivers are good with the comebacks.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

That Chick Lying Under the Glass

A prince comes upon a princess in the woods. She is doing the Sleeping Beauty thing with the glass casket and all. This is all straight out of some Disney flick. He gazes. He sighs. He walks away. We think he’s Prince Charming. We don’t know who she is.

Every night, every single night, he comes to gaze on her in the moonlight. He brings a sandwich sometimes and hangs out while he chows down. Sometimes he talks to the glass as if it’s a conversation. Sometimes he crawls up on the glass enclosure and lies down and stares at the stars. During the day he attends to matters of state, to matters of the stable, to matters of such and one. No one would know he’s spending his nights hanging out in the forest staring at some chick encased in glass. Every night he gazes on the princess. Even he doesn’t know why.

The princess in the meantime is getting bed sores. She’s been lying there for god knows how long. So, one day she feels the shadow of the prince fall upon her and as the shadow lifts she peeks out one eye to see what’s what. So, Hey! It’s a guy. And he keeps coming back. After a couple weeks of this she is beginning to wonder what he’s doing. He leaves bread crumbs. He climbs on top of her glass house and smooshes his back and butt into the glass and then just lays there for a couple hours. Some nights he just starts his lips moving and he walks around and around the glass case. He’s starting to leave a trail.

She peeks out every now and then to see if anything is happening. For her sake, she wonders if this guy is ever going to lift the glass and see what happens? Does he know all she needs is a kiss and the world becomes roses? What would she say if she could? During the day she cannot help herself. She cries hot lava flows of tears. Her frustration soars. The tears in the meantime have nowhere to go. In the heat of the glass casket the salt is leeched out and the tears become crystals that heat even more and become diamonds. These damn diamonds start to fill the glass case she lies in. After a while it’s getting pretty hard to see the chick in the glass case as she is getting overrun by this sparkly stuff that refracts the light and makes her image pretty sketchy.

This prince is showing up every evening and every evening it’s getting harder and harder to see this chick. He’s beginning to wonder what he is even looking at. Finally, Mr. Charming with the sandwich can’t see her anymore and he’s wondering if the glass needs cleaning or something. So, he opens the casket and is showered on with diamonds. The princess smiles to see the prince finally opened the glass. It was getting hard to breathe.

The problem here is…Does he kiss her? Does he finish his sandwich? Does she have to pee so bad she has to find a tree first? What happens to the diamonds? Does the Sandwich Man deserve them? Do they stay with the chick? Do they split the diamonds 50/50? Deserve? Why is deserving something even part of this fairytale?

People downtown

I had an argument with a woman downtown this week. Truly I don’t know how it happened. I consider myself a pretty easy person to get along with most times. I had just gotten off my first bus of the evening at the corner that I cross to get to the next set of buses. As I got off the bus another one zoomed past. I looked up to make sure it wasn’t mine. Other than that, I paid in no mind.

That’s when the woman hurried up to me. We were crossing the street to the next bus station. She looks directly at me while we walk and she asks, “Was that the 454?”
“No, it wasn’t.” I responded. “It was the 411.” I said.
“Oh, you pay attention. I have to learn how to do that.”
“No, I don’t.” I countered. “It might have been the 511. I’m not sure. It was one of the elevens. It said, Lynnwood.”
“You really do pay attention.” She said as we stepped up the curb onto the sidewalk.
“No, I don’t. I’m not sure which bus it was, other than it’s heading north.” And I realize every time I open my mouth I’m giving details on this damn bus that blew by me just a moment ago. I really, really did not pay attention. I saw it was not my bus and that was it.

I also hits me that I am walking along downtown politely arguing with a stranger, refuting the very idea that I pay attention. Why would I do that? It seems in this instance that I am paying attention. Is this the inability to accept a compliment? I dunno. I should be accepting her fine observation with a smile. But no, I do not let her pay compliment to this one time I display a fine quality.

We are still walking next to each other. We are smiling as we chat. It’s at this point I start laughing at myself. I wonder how twisted I really am. I am laughing that I wouldn’t let her say this about me, that I am attentive. I tell her not to accuse strangers of being attentive, we don’t know how to handle this kind of information. Her bus arrives and she shouts out to me while she gets on the bus, “Don’t be so hard to get along with next time!” We are laughing at each other – oh my god…I’ve become one of those…

I hope she is there again this evening.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Missed Opportunities and Popcorn

I've been out of town for a week. It was nice to get away. We all need that once in a while. I'm glad to be home. I headed to parts south and spent the week visiting with my daughter and the rest of my family. My mother flew in here to the Great Northwet and visited for a day or two first, then we flew together and invaded my brother's gracious home. It was an interesting time.

Twice I sent a text to a friend to see if an invite to join me would be appropriate. Twice the text did not go through. Being so close to the Mexican border cell service is spotty. I took the undelivered messages as a sign that my visit should be more specific toward family. For all the messages that did go through it was telling that those messages with an invitation did not. I send my good thoughts and warm wishes. I have warmer wishes I would sent my friend. But, times are changing in my own little world, whether I mean them to or not. Not everything is up to me. I recognize that. If it were up to me, it would be different.

My youngest daughter will be joining us here in the North Wet in November. I don't know how we will do it but the three of us will be living together in this apartment until we are able to find the home of our dreams. It takes some finagling to bring three dreams together. The emotional/mental/actional ride to combine and mix and settle these dreams will be interesting.

I have five opportunities for jobs waiting for me to apply myself to them. I better get busy. I want any of these jobs more than ever.

Fairytales have been popping out of me like popcorn. I'll butter them up and post what comes out when they are finally salted.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Giant Truths

Once upon a time there was a girl that each day was surrounded by giants. They were large and usually angry. The girl opened the shutters of her window every morning and greeted the giants with a smile as the lumbered up to see her. She would sit at her chair in her room set at the edge of the mountain as the giants lumbered over to her window and told her all their problems.

It seems giants, especially those with terrible crazy eyes, and those with only half of their faces still on their heads, are very unhappy. They each wanted to smile and to be happy. As the girl listened to the giants each day from behind her window she heard how unhappy they were. She wanted to make them happy. She wanted to see them smile. She didn't want the giants to yell at her from the other side of her window. When giants yell, they roar and this hurt the girl's ears and made her scared to listen.

One day a giant came to her window and bellowed at the girl. He wanted to smile. He wanted happiness and to rest in peace. The girl told him to go into the cave just beyond her window and a smile would be put into his face for him. He did not believe her. She was very quiet and leaned closer to her window so that the giant knew what she said was special to him. She pointed from her window at the cave entrance and told the giant again the cave is waiting for him to enter and that a smile for him would be in there. The giant got madder and told the girl he was too smart to be deceived by her and he would not follow her directions to go into the cave.

Inside the cave the elves and fairies and even some trolls were busy building smiles for the giants. There are many giants that need smiles. And the creatures in the cave are always busy making smiles so the giants can be happy. The giants think no one likes them, or that no one thinks of them. They come to the girl's window hoping, but not really believing that a smile is in a cave.

The girl felt sorry for this giant that could not believe a smile would be made for him. She got up from her chair in the window and walked into the cave and around to the entrance to greet the giant and show him the smile that was being made for him. He was a big giant. She was a small girl. She surprised him when she smile up at him at the cave entrance. He looked at the window and saw she was not there. He looked at the girl in the entrance to the cave and got even more angry thinking she was deceiving him even more.

Really, he was a scared giant. He was big and blustery, so that no one would see his fear. The girl thought he was only confused. She did not know he was scared. The giant, when he saw the girl and the door to the cave, started to bellow and belch and stomp his feet. The earth shook and the girl worried the cave would crumble. The other giants nearby did not know what to think either and they all sat on the nearby stones to keep them from rolling down the mountain. But the giant that was scared turned to the other giants and told them to stomp their feet too. He told the other giants the the cave is a trick and will only make them unhappy. He looked at the girl with his big blood-shot eyes, his face red with anger and he said, "I will not go into your cave! I have better things to do than be tricked by you!" and he stomped some more and then stomped away.

The small girl stood silent at the cave entrance. There was nothing more she could do for the giant. Another giant, surprised that the first giant stomped away, quietly, because giants can be very quiet, walked up to the girl and asked her very politely if he could please have the angry giants smile. What he didn't know was when the angry giant stomped his feet and shook the earth the special smile made white and shiny for him had fallen off the shelf and shattered into a million white twinkling stars. The elves and fairies would have to fly up to catch the stars to make the smile all over again.

The girl grew sad. She said, "I'm sorry." And she went back to her window where she stays, listening to giants every day tell her how much they want to smile.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Fear of fairytales

There once was a girl who wanted to write fairytales. She was scared of writing them. But, she didn't know why. She might have been scared no one would read them. She might have been scared that she wouldn't write them right. She might even have been scared that they would bring out the fears in her own life and that would mean everyone that read them would know her. That was a scary thought.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Picasso is Coming

Picasso exhibit is opening the weekend at Seattle Art Museum. I was downtown playing tourist with the gang and as we walked past the SAM. On the front walkway is Danny. He is doing chalk art on the sidewalk.
Much like sand castles the work will only last a couple footsteps (waves). I won't be here to see the finished project. I hope Danny got the contract to keep up his images through the exhibit's end in December. When I get back to Seattle I will have to walk down to the SAM again and see if it is still there. What a way to make a living.

The Love-will-find-me argument

I am told, or rather
I have read, well
It is said...
That love finds one
When one is not looking, or
When all hope for love is given up for lost.

I am an incorrigble optimist.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Buckets of Pearls

Once upon a time there were two sisters with two jobs very similar, only at different ends of the village. Each sister said her job was more stressful than the other. The sister at the north end of the village would say, My job is more hectic than yours as people come into our village from the north and I must teach them our customs, and find them places to stay. These people from the north don't understand our language or how to live in a village with roads and shops for things. My job is more stressful as I must be compassionate to their needs and remember not to judge them for what they do not know.

"In my job I am a money changer, a teacher, a map maker. I am a guide and an escort. My job takes patience to listen to what the people from the North truly want to find here. I am a translator for many languages into ours. These are all my jobs for all the people coming into our village from the north."

The other sister could hardly sit still as she listened to the list of stressful things. "Ah," she finally said, "My job does all of that - as each person leaves our village to head to the city south of us. And so much more besides. Yes, I change the money to be what money they use in the next village. I draw and explain maps to their next home. I tell them how to stay out of trouble, and what paths they should not take. I help them sell the things they cannot or do not want to take with them. I help them send letters in a thousand different languages ahead to a thousand different villages looking for homes, or loved ones or jobs. My job is stressful as these people have so little time left here and want to have their new life settled as they head to the south. I must be compassionate that when it is time to leave there is nothing that can hold them back. I am here to remind them that all the tears that are shed are actually pearls of love. If I could, I would hand them each the buckets of pearls they have caused with their leaving."

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Thoughts

Crazy, wonderful morning over here on the left coast. I found myself walking through love. (I know - "There she goes again, getting all freaky on us.") Thing is I'm walking along thinking all the goofy things I usually think (I spend a lot of time contemplating existence, synchronises, subtle shifting of paradigms and the like.), when I thought it would be interesting, if like the goldfish swimming in water, what if we are human swimming through love. Just substitute the word love for the word air. For an hour.

I wonder, like the goldfish, that we have no idea how we are suspended in love. It's not sink or swim - we swim without effort. We don't even know we swim. So, why the effort? This all calmed me down tremendously.

It is just as easy to walk surrounded in love as it is to walk surrounded in air.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

"Hi, This is Linda..

No one calls me anymore. I now realize how few peope I talk to on any give day. I used to get three, sometimes even four calls a day, depending where I was in the billing cycle. I got tired of erasing their calls and finally called financial management company to get me back on track. I should be debt free in three years and nine months. I don't know that I will hear from anyone ever again.

I do miss Linda (sigh). She always left a cheerful message. "Hi, This is Linda from Capital One." I don't remember what the rest of the message said. I always deleted it before she got any further. I wish I'd saved one of those messages. She was always so cheerful.

Unfinished Business

Staff meeting this week. It took forever. I must have doodles on two full pages. Walking into the conference room I could see the spire hats of all the little gnomes rise above their chairs. You'd think they'd take their hats off when they get indoors. Little gnome legs were swinging under their chairs while they pretended to pay attention, like me. I sat in a chair against the wall with some co-workers. Looking at the the conference table at the back of the cone hats that wagged back and forth as the gnomes leaned into each other to kibbutz and conference further. Some lean forward to blow on the mugs of hot chocolate syrup they bring with them to start their day.

Do they really care to be there? Staff meetings for gnomes have a hard time getting guest speakers. Gnomes are a private group. There were some grumbling gnomes wishing these morning staff meeting were in the evenings. Gnomes aren't known for being morning creatures. The evening meeting, grumbles one nasty gnome, would be better with the grog. His mug of chocolate syrup is larger than any gnomes at the meeting. He seems like a "more" gnome.

No one here knew who the guest speaker would be. It's been several months since the Executive Offices have approved a speaker. The Dragon King's Daughter was considered a conspiratorial visit. There were just too many concerns that her visit would be reconnaissance to take back with her the layout of the hallways and treasure rooms. Awfully nice of her family to offer her services as speaker. Just rather risky, all things considered, with Dragons and Treasure and all.

The Turtle Knight may have been an interesting option. He would certainly not be concerned with Gnome Treasure. He carries his own with him. It may still be an interesting option. The Executive Offices are waiting for him to arrive...eventually. There has been some scuttlebutt that when he does actually arrive the staff meeting will need to be extended a few hours (or a day) to give Sir Knight the time he needs to speak. We are all hoping he doesn't make this a sales call to promote the hardshell treasure sacks he was promoting last time. He went on for hours.

I do understand that the gnomes would like to hear from the Pixies again. They are light and lively and flitter and flutter around the conference table. There is no way to be sure they stay on topic, it's just a lively discussion. I imagine there is no time to doodle when the Pixies appear.

One gnome sitting at the far end of the conference table this week was humming softly to himself while he waited for Top Honcho Gnome to come get the meeting started. Humming Gnome did not know the other gnomes could hear him. He swung his feet under his chair and hummed along some more and hoped it's not the Pixies for a speaker. He just can't keep up with them. It's a warm and buoyant tune he hums. The gnome sitting closely by wondered if his neighbor hums because he is in a good mood, or if he hums because he is not in a good mood and wants to be.

Neighbor gnome hoped the keynote speaker called to cancel. He doesn't care who it is. He just likes that when the speakers call to cancel everyone is dismissed. That will leave him with two hours of no meeting, and an otherwise cleared off schedule. He doesn't have to pick up his pick-axe and trudge into the mountain with the other gnomes right away. He can sit under a mushroom outside for awhile and pick his teeth with pine needles. He can enjoy the light breeze and smell the forest floor decomposing. This is the best of all smells for him. He is a gnome, you know.