Monday, May 28, 2007
  The Packers Revenge

All three Sarcas-girls graduated from College. Sarcasmo Jr. even did it twice when she got her Masters Degree. Sarcas-sis went to one of those universities easily recognized by it's three initials. One that is known for turning out engineers , mathematicians, and talented graphic designers. when Sarcas-sis was attending she told me a story, long since forgotten , about a friend who was pursuing a degree in packaging arts. I didn't know that was a degree program at the time.But apparently , the shape of your detergent bottle is not pure happenstance. Neither is the package my Oil of Olay came in, which I am sure added mightily to the price. Anyway, at the time, Sarcas-sis told me that Packaging Arts is where students who can't make the grade in their declared major often ended up. Therefore, the major was known by this catchy phrase;

If you can't hack it, pack it.

This comes to mind every time I am trying to open a new toy for the CP. Not a matter of simply opening a box. Oh no. you need scissors, wire cutters, another pair of hands and the strength of a thousand men to free that damn toy from it's shackles. All the while a two year old is hovering at your elbow for you to free Thomas the Train or Dora the Explorer for what will be a good ten minutes of fun. I know one thing. Next Christmas I am opening every box and twisting open those insidious twist ties that they secure everything to the cardboard packaging with before I wrap them.. You know the ones. You twist left, oh no , right, no wait, left was right. or left.

I know one other thing. the packaging majors got the last laugh.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007
  Anybody Home?

On Sunday we took a road trip. Sarcas-sis, her hubby, the CP and I piled in the car and made the trek to Bear Country to visit Sarcasmo Jr. and celebrate her birthday with her. ( Feel free to wish her a happy belated one). Sarcasmo Jr. lives and works on a college campus. Usually when we visit her there it is after the students have gone home for a break because she is too busy when they are in residence. This was the case Sunday, as the spring semester had closed and the summer session has yet to begin. Imagine if you can an area that large, with buildings ands athletic fields and parking lots meant to accommodate the masses, but they are totally empty. It is almost the definition of the word "quiet".

When we arrived we opted to let the CP run around a bit as he had been in his car seat for 4 hours. We wandered around the hilly, grassy dorm area of the campus. The CP , with 2 year old curiosity left no stone unturned or stick untouched. As we went by the different buildings he would press his face and hands up to the glass entrance doors and ask "We go in?"Aunt Sarcasmo Jr. would tell him we couldn't because no one was home and we would move on.

When we had sufficiently stretched our legs we noticed our stomachs were growling and we decided it was time for lunch. We piled back into the car and headed for the local Applebees. As we pulled into the car filled parking lot, the CP became quite excited.

"Hey guys" he said with 2 year old enthusiasm. "We found the people"!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Last night Sarcas-dad and I joined Sarcas-sis and some of the kids at what Melody would call the local pub. The reason being that several local authors and comic book artists were gathered there there to meet and greet. Among them was Duane Swierczynski, Editor-in-chief of the City Paper , and , published author. Duane had generously donated a signed copy of his novel."The Blonde" to our auction benefiting the scholarship we funded in Star's name. In addition he offered to name a character in his upcoming book after the winning bidder. That would be me. I had set my sights on winning this particular prize. Because naming a character after me is the same as naming it after Star.

So last night we went to support the author, as well as the bar as the owner had made a generous donation to the auction as well. When we introduced ourselves to Duane he congratulated me on being the victorious bidder and then he asked what kind of character I would like to be. Hmmmm. What a question. One I had not anticipated. I am not good at spontaneous reaction. So I merely said I would leave it to the author. Which is how it should be. I had assumed all along that the character would be a very minor one. Half a paragraph on page 52. The waitress at the diner or the next door neighbor who serves no purpose in the plot. But now that he has asked it makes me think.

What sort of character would I like to be?

Very very good? Or very very bad? Or something in between. Nefarious? Altruistic? Hero or villain.? If given the chance to choose again, Who should I be? Who would you be?

Monday, May 07, 2007
  Strings and Sealing Wax and Other Fancy Stuff

Thanks you guys, for the input on my vacuum cleaner research. I ended up with the Windtunnel ( I know you were dying to know). I was Thissssss close to buying a Dyson. In fact that was the intention when I left home, based on the fact that everyone I know who has one sings it's praises. And had the big red electronic store had the one they advertised on sale, it would be in the upstairs hall closet right now. But they didn't And the sales clerks were really not interested in selling me a vacuum when there were big screen televisions and sales generating game systems to be to be pushed. So I left there and went across the street to The Place Where America Loves to Shop. Common sense prevailed. No kids, no pets , and I vacuum once a week. Plus , at TPALTS, the machines were on the floor for you to try ( at the red electronics store they were secured to the wall), and the Dyson was broken. Not a plus for me. So I opted for the much less expensive Windtunnel. Then I bought a new bathing suit. And I still didn't spend as much as the Dyson would have set me back.

The Windtunnel comes with an extra hose, which I find somewhat curious. The extra hose is longer, and reaches farther. So I wonder why they just didn't attach that one to the vacuum. According to the directions it should be a simple matter to switch them out. Should be. So far, neither Sarcasdad nor I have been able to wrestle it apart. In the meantime, the Cutie Patootie has found a use for the extra long hose. It makes a terrific telephone. We each took an end and took turns speaking and listening while we hid around corners and couches. Very silly play, and lots of fun.

I know I have touched on this before, but playing with a two year old provides and awesome workout. We threw the ball. swung a bat at the ball, chased a ball and bounced a ball. And then there were the steps. The CP is keen on showing his independence by traversing both up and down the steps from the front porch while he holds onto the railing. While I respect his independence it doesn't keep me from going up and down right behind him. Better than the stairmaster at the gym any day. And I didn't look at my watch once!

I am really more of a treadmill person at the gym. The machines face three tvs and in the early am when I go at least one of them is turned to local news, and that is just fine with me. I consider it multi-tasking. You can't hear the tvs as the volumes are lowered so you can hear the radio. But the ones on either end have closed captioning so that works just fine. Most exercisers are sporting IPODs, but I like to travel light. The other day the two end tvs were showing local news, and the middle one was broadcasting an infomercial. I never really got into infomercials. I saw my share when the girls were infants and up at three am and nothing else was on. But I never watched them willingly. Still I found myself oddly drawn to this one. Even without the sound it was easy to discern the "story". A sunny happy couple dressed in hawaiian shirts were hosting a houseful of oddball guests. As each one made it to the dining table they were treated to a tailor made breakfast in 10 seconds or less, courtesy of their hosts, and The Magc Bullet. Pancakes, muffins, eggs, smoothies, egg salad. The possibilities are endless. I am curious though. Does the 1o secnds include the time it took to pre-chop all the veggies and fruits and arrange them artfully on platters? Like I said, I'm new to this infomercial thing. But my time on the treamill was up before I knew it. And I kind of want a Magic Bullet.

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