Furry Friday, 9/23/22.

Remember, if you cannot read the caption, click on the image to embiggen.

Stanley the Emu does Fashion Week.

Remember in the early days of the pandemic when zoos and aquariums were taking their animals around and introducing them to each other? Let’s revisit one of those eye-opening moments with Nacho the penguin from the Oregon Zoo. (Click here to view)

https://www.yahoo.com/video/watch-trail-runner-becomes-pied-160153933.html
Posted in Furry Friday | 2 Comments

Unraveled Wednesday, 9/21/22.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

The baby blanket is finished! It needs to be blocked and perhaps washed and dried in the machine, but the knitting and weaving in ends is done. Now to wait for the potential, possible baby…

I went to dig up the Big Red Blob and found this: a Baby Surprise Jacket, nearly done! I remembered that I stopped working the i-cord binding when I got to the shoulders because I needed to sew those two shoulder seams, and I was not in the mode. But now I am in a finishing mood, so I hopped on it. (I had to overly tweak the saturation in the photo to get the color of the sweater right; ignore the yellowed washer and glowing red yarn bra.)

I suppose this BSJ will be for that possible/potential baby mentioned above. Why not? I was considering making one; now I am ahead of the game. Yikes, I hope I am not jinxing the whole thing…

Reading.

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Knocking Myself Up / Michelle Tea. This is the humorous memoir of the gay author who decided at age 41 that she wanted to experience pregnancy and have a child to raise. Lots of lezzy stuff, but not too much. 4★

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When Women Were Dragons / Kelly Barnhill. This is the book my book group is reading. I look forward to our discussion tonight. I loved this book.

(from last week’s Unraveled post) The author dedicated this book to Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who testified during Brett Kavanaughs’s Senate confirmation hearing. That tells you all you need to know about the author’s point of view in this book.

Women will occasionally turn into dragons, leaving behind their families, and after — if their husband was a particularly awful person — eating their spouse. The media largely ignores this dragoning, and word of mouth is labeled “inappropriate”. Even the Mass Dragoning of 1955 gets little notice after it occurs. Censorship and self-censorship are rampant concerning this subject. Talking about dragons is considered in the same league as discussing menstruation or pregnancy, inappropriate.

But censorship does not eliminate the thing it censors. Dragonings continue (just like gays in Florida). I am halfway through this book, so I do not know how it ends, but I am looking forward to finishing it tonight. 5★

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. I started to listen to this book in audiobook format, but the prose — even though it is in layman’s language — was too dense to absorb. So I got the book from the library. It still requires me to read many paragraphs over (and over), it is more my speed.

I have always been fascinated by relativity and astrophysics and quantum mechanics. In eighth grade I wanted to do a science project on relativity for a science fair, but was dissuaded by my science teacher (who was also the football coach, not to belittle coaches, but he was not the sharpest knife in the drawer).

Back in the 80s or 90s I took a six-week evening class from the University of Minnesota called something like “Relativity and Quantum Mechanics for Non-Scientists”. The description was clear in saying no math or physics background were required. At one point in the quantum mechanics section a person in the audience raised their hand and asked, “Is this stuff really true?” because it was making all our heads swim. The instructor said that, not only was it true, it was in everyday use in the electronics industry. I would love to take that course again (and again). The instructor was a physics professor who embodied Einstein’s saying that any darn fool can make something complex; it takes a genius to make something simple. 

Listening.

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Such as fascinating book. I suspect it would be even better if I were reading it in physical form; audio weakens it a bit. Reid has become one of my favored authors.

It is tempting to equate Evelyn Hugo with Marilyn Monroe, but really, the character is an amalgam of many starlets who managed to endure over the decades — Monroe, Liz Taylor, Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, etc., etc. Hollywood is not a kind place. 3★

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Watching.

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Suits. I am midway through season 8. Mike and Rachel are gone to Seattle, and there is a new partner in town — Izzy from Grey’s Anatomy. Since there are nine seasons of Suits, I will be seeking a new series, probably Seven Seconds, since I have already watched the first episode (twice).

Posted in Unraveled Wednesdays | 5 Comments

The great mosquito hack of 2022.

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Here is an easy way to reduce or eliminate mosquitoes in your yard and garden without harming bees, other beneficial insects, pets, or wildlife. And without slathering yourself with DEET.

I read about it here. She has links to her sources.

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I know I said the blog was on hiatus, but this was too good not to share!

Posted in Rural life | 2 Comments

Unraveled Wednesday, 9/14/22.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

If that photo looks familiar, it is because it is the same photo I used last week.

I am using the same photo because the baby blanket looks pretty much exactly like it did a week ago. I had to frog about 3″ because I found two previously undiscovered errors. I dropped back to fix them, but they still looked bad. Frogging was the easiest and surest way to reach perfection fix them. Really, it was not too bad; as EZ once said about ripping back, “It’s just an opportunity to do more of our favorite hobby.” This sucker may be done by next Wednesday.

Reading.

These four books are the first in Lucy Burdette’s series Key West Food Critic Series. They are not great literature, but they are entertaining in the manner of a cozy. I grabbed them because they are 1, about food, and B, set in the Florida Keys, a place where Smokey and I have vacationed many times.

The protagonist, Haley Snow, is a 20-something woman who followed her partner in a three-week fling back to his home in Key West. They last together as a couple for about as long as the fling back in New Jersey lasted. Hayley moves in with a long-time friend who lives on a houseboat docked in one of the Key West marinas and tries to find a job. She is hired as the food critic on Key Zest magazine. And wherever she goes, murder occurs, in the fine tradition of cozy mysteries.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered there are not 4 books in the series, but 12. Future escapism! 3★

Knocking Myself Up / Michelle Tea. I had only got started with this one when I realized I had to quick hurry up and read the book for my book group (below). This one is entertaining, kind of like listening to a really good stand-up comedienne. 4★

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When Women Were Dragons / Kelly Barnhill. The author dedicated this book to Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who testified during Brett Kavanaughs’s Senate confirmation hearing. That tells you all you need to know about the author’s point of view in this book.

Women will occasionally turn into dragons, leaving behind their families, and after — if their husband was a particularly awful person — eating their spouse. The media largely ignores this dragoning, and word of mouth is labeled “inappropriate”. Even the Mass Dragoning of 1955 gets little notice after it occurs. Censorship and self-censorship are rampant concerning this subject. Talking about dragons is considered in the same league as discussing menstruation or pregnancy, inappropriate.

But censorship does not eliminate the thing it censors. Dragonings continue (just like gays in Florida). I am halfway through this book, so I do not know how it ends, but I am looking forward to finishing it tonight. 5★

Posted in Unraveled Wednesdays | 9 Comments

Furry Friday, 9/9/22.

Press release: This is my 43,315th post since I started blogging in 2006 on TypePad. Or maybe it is since I moved to WordPress in 2015; WP allowed me to import all my TP posts back to January 2010. Who would have thought that I, introvert to the extreme and not fond of talking, would have so much to say?


Snuggle a boa constrictor. Hmmm, maybe not.

Lucas the penguin gets new shoes and a girlfriend.

The Mink Man (NYTimes article about Mr. Carter’s minks’ job as rodent exterminators. You may need a NYT subscription to read it.) My dad was a mink rancher for most of his life. They are indeed horrible, vicious, nasty little creatures.

They even cover this in slow motion, just like a REAL soccer match.
I told Smokey I want stairs like this when we finish the remodel. He thought I meant to put plants on the tread ends — that’s a good idea, too.

I am going to take a hiatus from posting because I have several big projects coming up between now and mid-October. There will still be Unraveled Wednesdays, because I like them, and Furry Fridays, because they are so popular. In fact, WordPress tells me that Fridays get the most hits. See ya on the flip side!

Posted in Furry Friday, YouTube | 3 Comments

Ranting, tra la la, 9/8/22.

The drunkest counties in the US. Wisconsin leads the nation! No surprise to me.
I live in a red county on the border with MN. It is #5 in the ratings.

Posted in Rants, various | 4 Comments

Unraveled Wednesday, 9/7/22.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

Baby blanket and rain gauge.

I am closing in on this blanket — 6″ to go! It has been a delight; simple mindless knitting with a lovely yarn. I can tell a couple things about this blanket: my gauge tightened up a bit the more I knit, and the blue section, knit first, feels softer than the newer sections, probably because it has been bouncing around my lap for weeks.

Froggy says Hi!

Reading.

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Chasing Fireflies by Charles Martin. This was an Amazon Prime freebie, but it got a 4.39 rating on Goodreads.com, much better than any of the other freebies I have read. Chase Walker, a small-town journalist, pursues a story about a muste young boy found near the railroad tracks. In the process he learns about himself and his adopted parents. 4★

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Rich Blood by Robert Bailey. Once again, an Amazon freebie with a good rating (4.33) on Goodreads. I would not rate it that highly, but all the reader comments indicate that there is a surprising plot twist at the end, so there is that. 3★

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Kismet / Amin Akhtar. Well, two out of three ain’t bad. This freebie from Amazon, to put it gently, sucked. Twenty pages in I knew what was going to happen; I only kept reading to see how close I got. The Goodreads. com reviews were all over the map. Some liked the (heavy-handed) skewering of the wellness industry/culture, while others were kept snickering all through the book. Not me. 2★

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Listening,

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. A retired Hollywood legend, Evelyn Hugo, picks an obscure New York journalist to write Hugo’s story of her life. I am 2 hours into this 12-hour audiobook. So far it is quite good. Reid is fast becoming one of my favorite authors.

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Watching.

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Suits, season 7. The corporate/legal soap opera keeps keeping me entertained. Smokey has begun working on projects in the evenings — his most productive time of day — instead of watching TV with me, so I watch at least 2 episodes of Suits every night. But I am getting very annoyed with Mike; he keeps promising more than he can deliver, giving people his word and reneging. 4★

Posted in Baby stuff, Unraveled Wednesdays | 6 Comments

Anti-rants, aka Good News, 9/6/22.

Yesterday was the mother of all earworms. (I come to you with) Open Arms / Journey. Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now / Jefferson Starship. We Built This City / Jefferson Starship.

Cover California canals with solar panels — win, win!

A (potential) Guiness world record.

Jedi fight at graduation!/

The Northern Lights put on a show Sunday night.

Saving paint from the landfill. Our county recycling center has a hazardous waste day, when people can turn in their things that should not go into the landfill — oil-based paint, paint thinner, RoundUp, other pesticides and herbicides, whatever. They put the paint on shelves outside their building and mark it “Free”.

Posted in Anti-rants | 5 Comments

Fiber Monday, 9/5/22.

Posted in Fiber Monday | 1 Comment

Saturday stuff, 9/3/22.

Smokey, to me: Today I decided I needed some excitement in my life. So I put on my RIGHT shoe first.
Me, to him: Oooh, good idea. I’m gonna try that, too!

Younger Son did not get the six-figure job with the tech mega-firm. So he will continue to have to pay into F.I.C.A. all year. (That last sentence is a tax accountant joke, which I am not going to explain. Google it.) “Not enough cloud experience” was what they told him. Shucky-darns.


Posted in Matthew, Saturday stuff, Smokey | 3 Comments