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December 31, 2005

New moon today!

Also I turn fifty-five - old enough to qualify as a "senior citizen" at some Australian hotel chains. I'll be damned if I am going to join the AARP - quit sending me stuff please, can't you take "no" for an answer?
Last year Katie surprised me with a cake and a sing-song at Olive Garden. She has New Year's plans this year so I am off the hook. We are going to McDonalds this morning though . . .hmm.

December 29, 2005

RIP Bob Wolen

RIP Bob Wolen

December 28, 2005

Playing with friends

I fly back to Indiana later this afternoon, but I have looked up a few of my friends and we are getting together at Charlie's Aunt in Chatham NJ at noon. You all are welcome to join us! Nothin' like old friends that date back to those college days thirty-five (yes, I am old in body - not spirit) years ago! It all comes back.

December 26, 2005

Boxing Day

Going out to play with some Christmas toys!

December 25, 2005

Doing the Christmas thing.

It is raining and warm out. Not very holiday-like in the least.
I am ready to strangle this bird. It lets out these blood-curdling godawful loud screeches randomly when it feels neglected. I think it needs a companion bird to play with, or fight with, whatever. As long as it stops the screaming.

December 23, 2005

Hello Ramsey

I am in Ramsey and I am hungry. We just bought a Christmas tree
and brought it home tied to the roof of the van.

[Update]

Here is the finished product! Smallish, but not a "Charlie Brown" at all!

New Jersey

My flight left IND on time, and because of favorable winds, gained twenty minutes on the ride to EWR. Sure enough, wouldn't you know it, we had to go into a holding pattern for, yep - twenty minutes!

December 22, 2005

Today is a travel day

I am off to EWR this afternoon for a six day stay in the land of crowds and malls, aka New Jersey. I was going to sample NYC, but the TWU Local 100 put an end to that idea this trip. I will stay west of the Hudson instead and hope the WX stays nice. My friend Sue is taking me to the airport this afternoon, she has also agreed to take care of Kittay's needs while I am away. I will have plenty of internet access while I am there, as well as some good jersey food, and the company of family. Back next Wednesday. Don't touch my stuff!

December 19, 2005

Cranberry Salsa

a la Marcia Reed

Cranberry Salsa

1 bag (12 oz) fresh cranberries
1 Granny smith apple, peeled, cored, cut into eigths
1/2 red pepper, cut in large chunks
1/2 medium red onion, cut in large chunks
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cut apple juice
3 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp grated lime zest

Put cranberries, apple, red pepper and onion in food processor;
pulse until chopped (I process 1/2 at a time).
Transfer to large glass bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients
until blended. Cover and refrigerate. Can be made a
week ahead so flavors blend.

cranberry salsa

Short week ahead

I leave the area on Thursday and plan to stop work activity on Wednesday to get ready to leave. Aside from the extreme cold temperature (+4 °F) this morning, it is very pleasant outside. Kittay actually went outside this morning without complaint, but she is back inside curled up near the furnace now.

December 18, 2005

Mall adventure

I had a mishap while at the computer Friday night. One of the legs on my five-legged task chair broke sending yours truly ass over tea kettle onto the floor. It just broke right off when I leaned back to get up. Good thing I have plenty of padding so I wasn't hurt. That chair was due for replacement anyway as the pneumatic height adjustment was losing its ability to support my carcas at the correct height.
So it is off to Office Max braving the Christmas shoppers on the last weekend before Christmas and to my complete surprise there were no crowds! Considering the fact that Indianapolis has only one way to get to any selected destination, the traffic moved at the normal +5-10mph above the speed limit as it usually does!
I settled on the most rugged looking chair I could find. No more plastic load-bearing parts for me. It may not be the most fancy chair on the floor, or have leather cushions, but it was the strongest. And the height at my desk is perfect!

December 13, 2005

Car drama

My darling daughter send me this email yesterday afternoon . . .

I need to take my car in. The clutch is still funky, the emergency brake wouldn't go all the way down this morning and it's making an awful grinding clicking sound. So, Can I use Poot in the meantime? I might not get it fixed if it's outrageous. I need to wait until Jan. to see if I have a permanent job. I don't think my car likes me anymore.

Oh great! Here we go again with that car. It is a 1994 Mercury Capri that was built in Australia. Even though it says "Mercury" on it, try and get parts for it from a Ford dealer. No way! They have stopped making the car, and the parts are rare. So then that afternoon I replied . . .

Bring it in. Poot is available. Call them first (555-3828) but I am sure you can leave in on the lot.

After being alone with my thoughts for a while, my mind began to paint vivid automotive repair disaster scenarios.
I know that particular beast has an appetite for motor oil. After getting that email, all kinds of seized-up-engine horror flashed through my mind. In a cold sweat I typed . . .

Is that grinding/clicking coming from the engine? CHECK THE OIL!!!

I went home and waited for her to call or stop by to claim the keys to Poot (although I think she has a set), but she was a noshow. Fine. I call and she says she isn't feeling well enough to deal with it just yet. OK. So I watched TV, cooked myself some spaghetti for dinner, washed up, got tired and went to bed.

This morning I got another email from her. . .

No, I think it was a chunk of ice. 'Cause it's fine this morning.

I could only reply with one word . . . "Phew!!!"

To which she replied . . .

You're telling me, I need it to last a couple more months. Before it retires to car heaven.

December 09, 2005

Seven inches

Of snow fell yesterday. The light, powdery kind which is easy to shovel and which will push off the car with a broom - no scraping. Kittay was not exactly pleased this morning, I had to kick her out to do her business. Oh, it was all fun and games yesterday when there was barely half an inch, but this morning was a different story.
I have a client at 11:00 and a haircut appt at 16:30 so I'd better get a move on.

December 06, 2005

Brr!

It has decided to get really cold out now. Fine. I can wear coats and layers. I am inside most of the time anyway. Kittay still actually likes to go out and do her business thus saving me the bother of dealing with a litter box. She doesn't like rain very much, though. My main gripe is that I don't have a garage or carport so I have to wait until the sun thaws out the car so I can see where I am going. Brrr.

December 03, 2005

ISP Problems

If this site loads too slowly, it is not your fault. They are working on it.

[update]

The man from SBC called me personally and apologized for the poor quality upload speed and assured me it would be fixed by this afternoon (Dec 5) - it seems like he was correct.

December 01, 2005

Booked my flights

Christmas vacation is the only thing I really like about Christmas. Honestly, though, rental cars are such a bloody rip-off!