Saturday, October 15, 2011


Happened upon this picture, and it always takes my breath away. I marvel at how effortlessly they glide around our ponds here, leaving a lovely wake. But when they leave the water to walk around, or cross the road to visit another pond, they are a clumsy mass of waddling bird. Sort of like a teenage boy who steps off his skateboard.

We have two resident swans, both female. Every spring they build a nest by going into someone's yard and rounding up their mulch. the first year we moved here, in "02, the nest was as big as a Volkswagon. They lay a bunch of big eggs, over a dozen,  They take turns sitting on the nest for about a month. then lose interest. There must not have had sex ed in swan school. Over the years they have become less enthusiastic about this next building business, but they still lay the eggs in great quantities. You can almost hear them talking, something like "Why do we do this every year? Whose idea is it? Next year, the one who brings it up has to do the work. It's boring, I tell you." This life lesson tells us not to trust hormones. Just enjoy being beautiful.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Men's brains

Remember the brasciola we used to eat at the Italian restaurant around the corner and downstairs from the Tampa Maas Brothers department store? No, that was fifty years ago, and I don't remember lunch. Men's brains are wired to remember food and sports, and it lets them talk to strangers with ease. "Try the brasciola." "How 'bout Carlos Zimbawatty's double play?" This man I am married to can tell you the starting lineups of both World Series teams from 1958. But he can't remember from one day to another how to work the toaster.

I've been trying to toaster train him this week while battling a strain of flu that ignores flu shots. I must just not be a good trainer. I, on the other hand, have a perfect, female brain. It lets me down on occasion, such as this last week. Do not jump to conclusions when your refrigerator doesn't seem to be as cool as you think it ought. You may have just added a lot of foods that needed cooling. Do not crank it up to 9. There was an old, unloved, bottle of beer that had been resting way back in there for at least a year, maybe two. When beer explodes it sends millions of sticky slivers into every nook and cranny of your refrigerator and makes you take out every drawer and shelf including some you didn't know were removable.

As I surveyed the sorry mess all over the counter, I said "Remember that brasciola doggie bag?"

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Stick to singing, Hank

So Hank Williams, Jr. is comparing Obama to Hitler. That tells us a lot more about Hank than Barack. He's supposed to be called a socialist, not a fascist, but you wouldn't know the difference. They're both bad, and un-American, y'know.

It's not a well-kept secret that most of this country's essential services are socialized. Nobody minds when we chip in to pay for services for the common good, which is the essence of socialism. It has been said that one reason the states united in the first place was to fund a navy, too pricey for a single state. It's impractical for most of us to hire our own police or firefighters. We have our own well and septic system in the country, but try that in your condo. Nobody refuses to use our roads and highways because they are purely socialist. Public schools, Godless socialism. You can refuse to use them and home-school or pay private schools, but you still have to pay for public schools. We do want the great unwashed to be an educated electorate, don't we?

Hank, make your Daddy proud and stick to singing. Your political oratory is off-key and a bit strident.