Wednesday, June 29, 2005
  Counting Down the Hours

As I write this Sarcassis and Sarcasbro have endured a 3 hour bus trip and are 5 hours into a thirteen hour flight with an active 6 month old, namely the Cutie Patootie. If the flight tracker I am watching is accurate they will soon be over Alaska. That will mark the first time since January 2004 that my whole family is in the U.S. When they reach the west coast we will all be on the same continent. And come July 15th when Sarcasmo Jr. can make the trek down from Bear Country to our house, my whole family will be in hugging distance of each other. There will be pictures!


Tuesday, June 28, 2005
  That's Eminent Domain , Your Eminence

Did you have the same reaction I did to the recent Supreme Court decision, allowing the seizure of citizen's homes and businesses for private economic development? I thought I had heard it incorrectly the first time and waited for it to come around again on the local news. I found this on Guppyman's Rant Zone. Check it out it you are also a dis-believer.


Sunday, June 26, 2005
  Three.....Two....One

Okay, you know that the Cutie Patootie will be here in three days. Wait til you hear about the party the city is throwing to celebrate. Will Smith is hosting, Stevie Wonder is coming, Bon Jovi, Destiny's Child and we expect a million guests to.....wait... what's that you say? Live 8? Oh. I see. Okay but two days later Elton John is coming and we'll have fireworks and.....wait..what? The Fourth? of July? Oh. Okay. But don't tell the CP. I'm going to tell him the fireworks are for him.


Wednesday, June 22, 2005
  Advertising

I live in a major metropolitan area, but I work in a much smaller municipality I call Backward Township. The Super Market where I am employed is located in an even smaller part of Backwards Township known as Backwards Borough. The Township considers the Borough the "wrong side of the tracks". It is populated by people who aspire to be on welfare . A failure is someone who can't beat they system and has to get a job to live. Economically depressed as it is, the Borough supports it's own Police Force. Most of the criminal activity concerns shoplifters, drunks sleeping it off in public places and drug busts.
A while back I was at work when someone from behind wanted my attention. "Ma'am?" he said. Turning around brought me face to face with a very earnest, very young, member of Backwards Borough's finest. " Ma'am I am with the Backwards Borough Police Dept. My superiors sent me to ask if we could have some of your brown bags" He pointed to a stack of bags on the end of a checkstand. The ones we use to package up customer's purchases. He continued 'We are currently conducting an investigation nearby and need the bags to assist in the collection of evidence". Yes , the Backwards Borough Police Department had a real crime on their hands, and no evidence bags.That never happens to Grissom. Of course I gave him the bags. Then I went to look outside, convinced I was going to find a couple of his "superiors" laughing their butts off in the parking lot over the joke they played on the new guy. Nope,. No laughing. Young Earnest Officer got into a squad car and took off.
The next morning, the Backwards Borough Courier carried the story of a horrific murder committed in the Borough. The victim was found, hacked to pieces in his living room. Emblazoned on the front page was a highly unusual color photograph, of Young Earnest Officer leaving the house, followed by other officers. Each one was carrying a brown grocery bag with the name of the Market where I work brightly printed on them.
You couldn't buy that kind of publicity.


Monday, June 20, 2005
  Hey- I'm Over Here!

Back in December the blog host I was using snuck off like a thief in the night, taking my domain name with it. Since then, the lovely Sarcasmo has allowed me to piggyback on her site. But I need mooch no more! After much much begging, pleading, and cajoling, which did absolutely no good, we finally just waited it out. I am now back where I belong , www.wedsoff.com. I hope you will still visit me here. I owe many thanks to my technical advisor, again, the lovely Sarcasmo for helping me find my way home.


Sunday, June 19, 2005
  A Father's Day Post

Happy Father's Day Sarcasdad, Sarcasbro, and to all the Dads.

What follows is a first for me- a rerun. It is the post from last Father's Day. I read it over before deciding what to post for today, and decided it is just what I want to say. So as they promote on one network or another-"If you haven't seen it, it's new to you"


Abu el Banat

This is a Father's Day post. Really. Just stick with it.
One of my favorite episodes of The West Wing aired in December 2003. All President Jeb Bartlett desires for the holiday, besides peace on earth, is to have his family gather together for a traditional Christmas Eve meal. His family. His wife and his three daughters. As the show progresses it becomes clear that while he may lead the free world and command the armed forces, his daughters will do as they please. One puts her job ahead of family plans and is constantly delayed. By the time she is finally in route another daughter is packing to leave because she feels her husband has been slighted. When the First Lady suggests that things aren't going as planned the President tells her

"That's okay, I have a picture in my wallet of the three girls together in Acadia in '96...."

Later he tells another staffer:

"...fifteen years ago we took a trip to Egypt. All five of us Saw the Pyramids and Luxor and then headed up into the Sinai. We had a guide, a Bedouin man, who called me 'Abu el Banat'. And whenever we'd meet another Bedouin, he'd introduce me as Abu el Banat. And the Bedouin would laugh and laugh and offer me a cup of tea. And I'd go to pay them for the tea and they wouldn't let me. 'Abu el Banat' means 'Father of daughters' They thought the tea was the least they could do."

So Happy Father's Day to my husband. "Abu el Banat". He left a male dominated household for a world of strawberry shortcake, prom dresses and male bashing. He probably knows more about women , I mean real women,. than Hugh Hefner. And on the flip side his daughters know how to judge a man.

Apparently there were no Bedouins in earshot when three little girls would run to the door yelling "Daddy's home!"
Who needs tea?

"Dad, Kelly and I borrowed a car to move and it's stuck in the middle of the street. What should we do?"(the car and the girls were in Pittsburgh and we were in Philadelphia.)

"Guys suck! But not you dad. Because you're not a guy you're a Dad"

" Dad. You can not call a girl dressed to go to the Sophmore formal Shorty!'



Monday, June 13, 2005
  I'm So Excited

Do you remember the carefree days of your youth? Before you learned that there is no free lunch? That for every action there is consequence? That there are rules to follow and pipers to be paid.?Before you became the responsible adult? Maybe vaguely. I think this may be why being a grandparent is so great. All the love and fun , and hardly any responsibility on your part.
As the arrival of Cutie Patootie draws closer I am asked almost daily if I am excited. Yes I am. Let me try to put it into words.
It's like being 4 years old and knowing that Christmas Day is nearing. You look at the calendar everyday and do the math. You are pleased and disappointed simultaneously about the amount of days til the big event. I'm trying to pace myself but if I have to wait one second longer than the allotted time I may explode.
That about covers it.Peek a Boo


Sunday, June 12, 2005
  Friends Forever

Yesterday the whole extended family gathered to witness the Bat Mitzvah of my niece Jessica. For most of us this was only our second such event, the first being her older brother's Bar Mitzvah three years ago. The celebrations were very similar. The marked difference was that at the reception after the ceremony, the tables for Jess's friends were populated with girls instead of boys. Girls all somewhere around the age of 13, all of whom were familiar with how this party would go. All attempting to appear more grown-up than they are in party dresses and done-up hair. The illusion was somewhat compromised when the D.J. handed out inflatable shoes and battery operated toys that could spin and flash in red white and blue. They spent most of their time dancing and running back and forth to the bathroom. They came and went in twos and threes and groups of four and sometimes as an entire entity. Their re-entry to the party room was usually punctuated with shrieks and giggles and whispers. Near the end of the day the girls gathered around Jessie and one by one gave their testimonials. One claimed best-friendsmanship and one had been her friend since they were little. Another friendship went all the way back to the 6th grade. How ever long they knew her they all avowed their pride in her accomplishment, and to a woman their speeches ended with "We love you Jess" and a hug. When the testimonials were over the photographer gathered them all together for a group picture. The posed linked arm in arm. I bet they were thinking that they would be friends forever. Maybe they will be. Maybe some of them will be. More than likely they will be friends for a while. At least til they get to high school and morph into the prom queens and the soccer stars and the valedictorians.Or til someone moves away promising to keep in touch and come visit. Or til serious boyfriends. Do you have a picture like that tucked away somewhere?


Thursday, June 09, 2005
  Good Books

Sarcasdad and I have been reading stories to our grandson , and recording them on the computer. Then Sarcasdad sends them to Sarcassis via Dropload.com, and burns them to a CD as well. It is our way of trying to stay connected to the little guy who is so far away. We hope that when he gets here there will be some flicker of recognition in his eyes. Of course we may have to hold a frame around our faces at first since to him we are mainly talking heads. We have read through our initial Amazon purchase of stories, Make Way for Ducklings, The Little Engine That Could, Curious George, and some other classics from both our childhoods and that of the Sarcaskids. Yesterday we made our way to a Mega Book Store. I find it amazing that I live in a major metropolitan area and I have to drive 30 minutes to get to a decent bookstore. The last one in close proximity was a family run store that had been there 35 years or so. They cited high rent as the reason for closing, but I truly think it had more to do with the dumming down of society, too much reality TV , cell phones, Ipods and Xboxes.
Anyway, at the bookstore we picked out a few titles. I have enjoyed reading If You Give A Mouse a Cookie, and If You Take a Mouse to School by by Laura Joffe Numeroff so I chose 2 more in the series. If You Give a Moose A Muffin and If You Give A Pig a Pancake. Sarcasdad chose a book about Elmo's Birthday and one called Naughty Kitten. That last one was chosen specifically because the Cutie Patootie went head to head with the cat, necessitating the CP's first ever visit to the emergency room. On the way to the register we browsed some titles for ourselves. I couldn't believe my luck! New fiction by Caleb Carr, author of The Alienist and Angel of Darkness. I was so excited. I found this author quite by accident. I asked for a copy of Angela's Ashes and was gifted with The Angel of Darkness. It was so well written and so engrossing to read that I sought out The Alienist. Since then I have looked for this author's name in stores that offer both new and used books. I know I looked him up open Amazon at least once, but never found anything else. I grabbed up The Italian Secretary and didn't even read the bookflap til I got home. The novel was commissioned by the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and is a Sherlock Holmes tale . Not my favorite genre but I am still anxious to start it. Of course I still have to finish the book I am reading now. The Crimson Petal and the White by Michael Farber. And I have the Delight of Dying by blogdom's own Clare Sudbury and The Broker by John Grisham on my nightstand. I really enjoy reading. But I also really enjoy the Sunday New York Times Crossword, and, you know, blogging and there are only so many hours in the day. And many of them are taken up by that job I go to every day!


Tuesday, June 07, 2005
  Use The Force

This was a fun way to start off my day, so I thought I would share. It's a Star Wars twist on the old favorite, 20 questions. The Sarcas-fam used to get into some rousing competitions at the dinner table. When I went back a for a second try, Darth said "(breathe, breathe) HMMMMMM, I've read your mind before(breathe , breathe)". Maybe he is all knowing. And can someone please tell me what exactly falls under the "mineral" category?

(found on The Guppyman's Rant Zone)

note to Sarcaskids: wonder if he'll guess "felt"


Thursday, June 02, 2005
  The Day of Wine and Ice Cream

While we were in upstate New York visiting Sarcasmo JR., we made a stop at the Bear Pond Winery in Cooperstown. The winery is small and offers a self guided pictorial tour. One of the photos was of a castle in Germany where the winery's original owners' ancestors started the family business. The picture looked just like a castle we had visited in Germany when we visited Sarcasis. When I got home I went through my photos and contacted Sarcassis for her opinion. None of us are 100% sure if it is the same place or not. As Sarcasmo Jr. pointed out, there is no lack of castles on hills with grapevines in the Fatherland. If it was the same castle, that would be a neat coincidence. The new owners Of Bear Pond are not related to the original owners. They tried to look up some information for us while we were there but had no luck. But we did get to do some wine tasting. Sarcasdad and I put our new found knowledge to the test. We came away with a few bottles, including a Riesling which is not a wine we tend to purchase, but the Rrr Riesling was quite good.
We also made a stop at a very charming ice cream & dessert shoppe called Pie In The Sky.They have their own brand of ice cream called Polar Bear. Bears apparently figure quite prominently in upstate new York. You could also get pie by the slice or brownies. The store had game tables where you could sit and play checker or chess and one table had a big jigsaw puzzle you could work on if you wanted.It was quiet while we were there but I bet it is really hopping in the summer heat. I don't keep ice cream in the house because I eat it all, so it was really a treat to get amaretto cherry chocolate chunk in a sugar cone.

Here is Sarcasdad & Sarcasmo Jr. at the Winery.P5300176
Here is Pie In The SkyP5300180P5300181P5300182
As you can see, the ice cream is available til 9:30 but therer is no time limit on Asparagus!


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