Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Me Crochet A Lot

August 29, 2015

capture-me 2I have a fun little thing to share with you. Fun, funny and pathetic, really – all in one shot.
My old readers know how much I detest (I’d say hate, but thanks to my new found gift of eloquence from having recently kissed the Blarney Stone, I’m broadening my vocabulary some) the lazy overuse of the word amazing to describe everything from the taste of thrice filtered water to the dress any given celebrity may have been wearing (or at least halfway wearing) on the red carpet to event X. “Oh, that song is amazing”. “The hamburger tasted amazing”. “It was an amazing day at the beach”… You get the idea.. It’s one of my grammar pet peeves. My father’s was the correct use of “Bring” and “Take”, a mission Ariel has taken up with wondrous aplomb. And the other pet peeve of mine is the incorrect use of personal pronouns. I recently wrote about this in an email to my niece so she knows the punchline to this story.
Hmm, now that I think back, given the blog I wrote last week about having missed a month’s worth of English class, maybe I have no leg to stand on here, but I beg to differ, because I still know what sounds ridiculous.
I also know what looks ridiculous. Take a look next time at any TV show and notice how people drink from and handle cups of presumably hot coffee.  It might be more convincing if the cups were actually filled with say, water, to give them some heft like a real filled cup. If the heat is too risky an insurance issue, then at least act like it’s hot. But I’m getting away from my point but all I know is that’s one of those things I look for, along with general continuity. One scene Jan’s hair is down and one scene it’s in a pony tail in “House of Cards” when the kids build a house of cards to see who gets the books of trading stamps. Ah. remember them? We used to save Plaid stamps and my next door neighbor swore by S&H Green stamps.
Man alive, focus focus focus.. Sheesh.  Anyway, back to my pronouns. Perhaps the saddest element to this is that a lot of these misuses are from media people, and even sadder are those instances when it is scripted material. I can almost…almost excuse it when it’s a live event and you’re all hyped up and not thinking clearly (we all do it) because something amazing just caught your attention, but I can’t deal with scripted mistakes because there’d be time for editing out what doesn’t sound right.
For example, take this sentence: “Julie invited Ariel and I to her house for a barbecue next week”.  “Midge gave Ariel and I a Christmas present, but not until February because she really didn’t buy it until the sales went on and then we didn’t see her because she was vacationing on the French Riviera.” “Larry met Ariel and I at the pub for steak and stout pie.” You get the idea.

I know what it is. It’s the fact that the lesson in school was that when you’re including yourself in a group, it was stressed that you put the “I” pronoun last as in, “Julie Ariel and I” (there’s that Julie again) when it is a subject pronoun; the “me” is used as an object as in Midge gave Ariel and me…. Break it down and ask yourself, did Midge give me something or did she give I something?  By the way, we’re not going to the barbecue because we don’t know a Julie. Alas!
But the crowning glory, the main point of this blog,  came the other morning while I was watching the news, and I won’t name names, but I will say this quote came from a law enforcement official being interviewed on the increasing use of body cams by police officers and he capped his statement about it with, “…everyone will be wearing a body cam on he and she’s uniform.”
Oh good Lord. I just hope the officer is wearing an amazing one if him or her ever have to come Ariel and I’s house for any reason.
Well, enough of that. I mentioned last week about the twin baby blankets I was working on and I thought I’d give you a little peak at them. The diagonal strip on top is the second of the two and is currently being worked on. The difference between them is that the one is bordered in pink while the second is bordered in white. Both will get fringe to finish them off and then I’ll send them out.

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And don’t forget, there is still this Bavarian stitch blanket on Ebay.

 

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Yarn To The Left Of Me, Yarn To The Right….

August 22, 2015

Wow, it’s like a new beginning. I really need to get in here more often, but at least I’m making these cameo appearances. Ha, that reminds me of the time one of my high school teachers said that to me in my senior year. I may have told this once before, but I’m telling it again.

In my senior year of high school I was absent for a grand total of 33 days during the course of the year. The greatest number of them centered around the time Karen Wolek exposed herself as a hooker on the witness stand in the murder trial on One Life To Live, still sorely missed by yours truly. But as it goes, the day during that period I went back to class was the explosive episode when the truth came out. But, because I had promise as an exemplary student my teachers of the necessary subjects needed to pass in order to graduate, they offered to count particular tests for multiple ones I’d missed. But they weren’t your ordinary ones, especially in English class. No. I had to recite the soliloquies from both Hamlet and that other one…what was it?…

Well, whichever it was, I had to do them flawlessly and without hesitation and each would be worth 3 test scores. And I did! Anyway, on one day when I returned to class, on of my teachers announced to the class that I was making a cameo appearance…to get back to that train of thought.
Well, here I am, fresh from the doctor’s and some of you on Facebook already know that my blood work came back great, my tumor maker numbers lower than from my last appointment 4 months ago and my doctor didn’t want a PET scan this time. My last one was a year ago this month and now he doesn’t want to see me for another 4 months. He put me on a 4 month visitation because he felt every three months was overdoing it.
As is my ritual when I have my appointments, I bring in some home made goodies for the nurses and now that my span of time has increased between visits, I’ll have to make a stop in at the halfway point and that works out well because I already have an idea for Halloween. Anyway, when the doctor came in, I asked him if he’d been to the kitchen yet, remembering how he joked one time and said, “You should have them page me to get to the kitchen, STAT, when you bring stuff in” and he said no, but he heard I’d brought something. I made blueberry zuchini cake with lemon buttercream frosting, cut inti individual bite size pieces. Then he got all serious sounding and said “I have to be honest with you” and I got a lump in my throat. I figured he’d tell me I shouldn’t be doing that anymore and he continued, “We saw your name on today’s patient list and we all thought, ‘Hooray, Brian’s coming, I wonder what he’s bringing’”.  And he busted out laughing. And then he apologized, that he didn’t want to take it for granted but I told him if he keeps me coming back I’ll keep bringing stuff in.
And I’ve still been busy crocheting my fingers to the bone making baby blankets and putting them on Ebay or making them for private commissions as long as the recipient makes a donation to the American Cancer Society. So far, I’ve figured, since I’ve started this project, I’ve raised in the neighborhood of $2,000 for the ACS. And right now I’m working on another private commission for two blankets for a set of twin girls who are the donor’s great great-and I think one more great-nieces.  An important note: the supplies, the time and work and the shipping are all on me and 100% of the sale goes directly to the American Cancer Society through Ebay’s Giving Works page.
But I have my MACBETH! That was the other Shakespeare soliloquy I had to recite. I knew it would come to me. Now, where was I? Oh yeah, I have my most current baby blanket on Ebay and you can see it here or click the picture below. Like I ask my friends on my Facebook page and the page I created there just for my baby blankets Crochet For The Cure, to please at least look, perhaps bid and just as importantly, share the link.

Even though I’m a lucky cancer survivor, there are so many who we’ve lost or are currently going through their own battle and I hope to be able help raise much more than those $2,000.
So please check it out. And now I have to go back into hiding until my next appearance.  These blankets don’t crochet themselves!

 

bavarian stitch
Later y’all!

Buy. Sell. Cure….Again!

April 11, 2015

Capture greenI can’t believe an entire month has gone by since my last blog and I also can’t believe, after reading that entry how it almost seems no time has gone by, but I know it has. You have no idea how much time has gone by just since I started typing this out. I got sidetracked.
Let me update. In my last entry I had just had a Mohs procedure done on my right ear. Well, all this time later and it’s still healing. It’s fine, but I guess with that skin graft and all it takes a little longer. But, Ariel says the hole that was there from all that digging around is just about covered over and that’s a good thing because I could really stand one less hole in my head. But I see that doctor, whose proper title is “dermatologist/dermatological surgeon”, in two weeks for another follow up and to have some other procedure done which she says will help stop the spread of cancerous cells in that area, BLU-U Light Photodynamic Therapy. I learned her true title in an email inviting me to a luncheon where she will be honored with the Spirit of Life award by (I hope I’m condensing this correctly) The East End Chapter of New York’s City of Hope. I’m not going, but it’s nice to know I have such an esteemed doctor taking care of my little basal cells. Well, not only that, but my dermatologist, who referred me to her, had his own father to see her on one of my visits.

Okay, on to the matter at hand. The last baby blanket I had up on Ebay’s Giving Works benefitting the Eastern Region of the American Cancer Society (100% of the proceeds going directly to them) was taken off Ebay when an outside buyer decided she wanted it and a donation was made to ACS. And not only that, but a request for two more just like it were made and those went to benefit the Canadian Cancer Society. And, just earlier this week, another request was made, sight unseen, with a check enclosed to be forwarded to ACS for two baby blankets to go into a ‘grandma-to-be” special box for their kids’ eventual entrance into parenthood.

And now I have this one up on Ebay and if you would, please check it out, hopefully bid on it–I figure everyone knows someone with a baby– or at least share the link with someone who would be interested. I know the colors all look different from picture to picture, but I’d say the one draped over the chair is the truest.

Click here to see the Ebay page

 

3 Sherbert baby blanket draped 3 Sherbert baby blanket folded 3 Sherbert baby blanket close up

Again, I am not benefitting financially from any of these baby blankets. 100% of the proceeds go directly to The American Cancer Society. I supply the materials, my time to make them and I even pay for the shipping.

Hopefully I’ll be back before my next blanket is ready to go to auction. It’s about halfway done so I can’t say for sure. And then I’ll be working on the grandma-to-be blankets most likely simultaneously with the next Ebay blanket. I’m keeping busy. I want to help in my own small way to help get rid of cancer.

Buy, Sell, Cure!

March 8, 2015

Do not attempt to adjust your screen, and don’t rub your eyes to the point of ulcerated corneas, it’s really me, making an appearance. I know it’s been a long time since my last blog entry; July 1, 2014 as a matter of fact when I finished my eighteen week long account of my battle with cancer.
I’ve thought and I’ve thought of what type of things I could write about since then to keep my blog going since my main focus was never really on one topic but rather putting my spin on some things that otherwise made me go, hmm…. . But now I think I have a purpose for resurrecting my blog and hopefully it will incite me to be more active and creative here.
Before I get to it, let me bring you all up to date. January 22 of this year was my first anniversary of remission. Twice during that time, well, since last August, my oncologist, Dr. David, has postponed any further Pet scans because my blood work keeps coming back better and better each time. I see him next in April and maybe at that point I’ll be due for one. Also since my last blog entry I’ve had two basal cells removed; one from my forehead back in October and one from the inside of my right ear this past Thursday for which we trekked through the “snow storm of the century” to the Upper East Side of Manhattan. It’s healing nicely but it’s sore and itchy under the bandages. Now that we’re up to date, let me get to my point and not belabor it.
As many of you know, while I was going through my treatment for my Lymphoma, I learned how to crochet and I’ve made some fairly impressive pieces, if I do say so myself, but I can make only so many afghans for myself.
And then I had an idea. I contacted the American Cancer Society and they aligned me with Ebay’s Giving Works. I wanted to put my crocheting to better use other than to have a collection of afghans the size of Fred Flintstones’ Bronto Ribs that tipped over his car at the drive- in draped over the back of my couch. I am crocheting baby blankets to auction off to help raise money (100% of the proceeds) for cancer research, in the hopes that future generations will never have to go through the torments of cancer.
So far I’ve sold one blanket and currently have my second one up and I will be starting the next one, most likely later on after settling in once my Sunday “to-do” list is done.
I will let the text in the picture below speak for itself and I’ve also included pictures of the blanket itself as well as the link to the auction page.
Please take a look. Please bid if you have an interest and more importantly, please spread the word. Everyone knows someone who is having a baby. And chances are you know someone who has had or has some form of cancer. How nice would it be to know you may have helped someone not have to battle cancer?
Thank you.

Click here to go to the Ebay page.

write up full image back and front close up

Here’s Your Little Friend

June 10, 2014

I have to backtrack a little bit because I forgot a curious little tidbit. I thought it was after my first PET scan, but looking back at what I wrote last week, it couldn’t have been so it must have been during session 4, back on October 17. Sorry, just momentary a case of chemo-head! It happens.

I had asked Dr. David if it were somehow possible for me to see what my tumor looked like and he was more than happy to oblige. Out came his iPhone and after a few clicks, there it was in glorious black and white, the image from my original CT scan. He pointed out my bladder and my kidney and the tumor, which, if I was looking at the correct image, looked to be in the shape of the state of South Carolina and it seemed to take up most of my mid-section.

What puzzled me was how the stent fit between the bladder and the kidney. Well, first of all, I had no idea at that time what the stent looked like and I pictured it in my mind as a smallish object, maybe 2 inches or so, made of metal, that somehow pierced those two organs. I never questioned it, though that would explain the occasional pinch I would feel up inside. That’s a lesson learned, for sure. Ask questions. It was only later, after it was removed that I learned what it really looked like (and I posted a picture of it early on in this series). Here’s a composite of how I remember seeing the tumor on Dr. David’s phone, except it was shades of gray. Hmm, shades of gray, sounds like a great title for a book.

stent-sc

 

On Wednesday, December 18, I had my appointment with Dr. Clambake to have the stent removed. Everything was starting to get buttoned up on this chapter of my life, one step at a time.
The receptionist at Dr. Clambake’s had said, over the phone, the procedure was easily done in the office and I couldn’t imagine such a thing, considering the ceremonious procedure to put it in, having to put me under and have me sign all kinds of waivers in case I never awoke from the anesthesia. Would they put me under again? Would I be awake? Would I bleed? Would it hurt? Knowing how it went in, I joked with whomever I felt discussing it with that I wish I could send “it”, meaning my “you know” ahead and have it taken care of. I stopped that joke when the nurse who was prepping me didn’t appear to find it amusing. Plus it was coming out, so why continue with it?

After I got all through with all the requisite paperwork the nurse brought me into the room and had me empty my bladder and change into a paper gown but keep my shoes on so I didn’t slip on the floor. Then she explained what was going to happen on this very evening, that I might experience blood in the urine for a day or two, that I might have phantom sensations that the stent was still in there for a while. Great scare tactics!

Enter Dr. Clambake, who appeared more towering and imposing than in his hospital scrubs back in August. Dr. Clambake became Dr Let’s Get This Done! But why wasn’t Nursey Nurse Nurse Nurse leaving the room? Oh no, don’t tell me she’s going to watch. Wait, he’s an accomplished doctor, he doesn’t need her help. “Lay back, Mr. Sigley”. Oh God, she IS staying and assisting. Oh God, she’s gonna see me naked. Then I heard them speak in medical jargon for a few and I felt something going on down there. I think she was holding the light, or the scope or playing Candy Crush, I’m not sure, but Dr. Clambake said “Okay, it’ll just be a minute” and I felt some pressure like I was going to, well, go and it reminded me of the story both my mother  and my uncle always recount of the time when I was a baby and he was changing my diaper for the first (and probably last) time and didn’t realize he needed to cover my “area” because I got him good, like a Roman fountain.

“Aaaand here’s your little friend,” Dr. Clambake said, dangling that 9 or 10 inch long piece of cord over me.

 

stent 2

“You’re done”. Do I need any antibiotics? “No, get cleaned up and dressed and go home. You’re fine! Nurse, give him a dose of “X” for pain. Call me if you need anything!” And there went Dr. Clambake to parts unknown.

The entire actual procedure lasted less than two minutes, if it even took that long. I did as he said, took the pain pill when we got to a restaurant, Carrabba’s, for dinner, which also served a as a celebratory one. Hey, any reason for a party, right?
I never did experience any ill effects except a minimum of burning during the first pee post-stent and I never did have any phantom sensations of it still being in place, but I guess they have to let you know what might happen so they’re covered.

 

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Fourth And Scan!

May 20, 2014

Not to belabor this story with the horrors of side affects the Chemo and the shots of Neulasta, the time release shot I was switched to (from Neupogen) after Chemo round #2 brought, I will simply summarize by saying it all went pretty much the same: starting with a blood test to make sure nothing out of the ordinary was going on to prevent me from each treatment, regaling the nurses with the confection of the week, getting set up in my chair away from the TV which seemed fixed on ABC and anyone who knows me knows that since One Life To Live was taken off, I don’t watch ABC and the one time we sat alone in that area, ultimately someone came in and decided to watch that channel and merely hearing those shows that took the soaps’ place was making me sicker than the Chemo was. And of course suffering the nausea and pain afterward.. Sometimes the nausea would set in on the way to the drug store to pick up that infernal Prednisone that would become my enemy for the next five mornings. But I always had my bucket.
There was one incident I had, actually it happened twice on two separate sessions when the infusions had to be temporarily halted. Knowing my system could tolerate the faster drip, (I’m assuming this is the reason) they started me off at a faster rate and it was too much all at once and even though they’d started me out with Benadryl and Zofran (to guard against nausea) the feeling of nausea set in and they had to send for Dr. David to check me out before they could get me started up again. Even with the faster pace of the Chemo drip, I was still the first one in and the last one out of each of my remaining sessions.
I still took my naps during my lunch breaks from work and I looked forward to them. Surprisingly, every once in while, I’d find myself waking up in a more supine position and not in the bolstered up sitting position I started out in. And there was minimal, if any, pain. Ariel suggested starting out that way next time and I could always sit back up if it became uncomfortable. With a little trepidation I did and it was fine. I was able to lay down again and with marked comfort. Bliss!
The true test of all this suffering was yet to come when I would have my first PET scan on Tuesday, October 29, 12 days after Chemo #4. This was to determine how effective the chemotherapy had been up to this point.
Bad news: I had to fast for at least 6 hours for this test. Good news: the test was scheduled for 11am. I was able to have a light breakfast, but before 5 am, so by 4:30, Ariel was downstairs rustling me up some grub: over easy eggs, toast and coffee. Even though I was suffering from a number of side effects from chemotherapy, loss of appetite was not one of them.
The appointment might have been scheduled for 11am, but by the time all the red tape of checking in and preliminary interviews–family history, other maladies I’ve ever suffered, if I have false teeth, what I had for breakfast on June 29 th 1983–and a general orientation had been done, I was glad for those eggs 7 hours prior.
The steps to having the scan were simple. I was to make sure there was no metal on my person (check!), surrender my wallet (check!), my phone (check!), and anything else that might show up in the scan (check!). I was to sit in the QUIET ROOM to relax where a technician would first take a sugar blood test by pricking my finger (that’s relaxing!). Then, they injected a sugar substance via IV (the sugar was radioactive and the cancer is attracted to the sugar..again…relaxing), then gave me a pillow and blanket so I could really unwind in the darkened room for 45 minutes. During those 45 minutes the door to the QUIET ROOM must have opened and slammed at least a dozen times, loud conversations were going on just outside in the corridor and far off slams of doors to other rooms were slamming shut every so often. I was imaging that in the right conditions, I’d be glowing now that I was full of toxic sugar. And, my tummy was growling–the eggs had finally worn off. The QUIET ROOM was not very relaxing and quite frankly, I’d have gotten more rest playing Candy Crush on my phone.
The procedure is pretty much the same as an MRI or a CT scan, you just lay as still as possible on the table that takes you inside the tunnel and it whirs and bangs and clunks for 35 minutes and you ignore that itch that suddenly creeps up in the most unlikliest of places as best you can.
When it was over we were told the results could be ready by 4pm but most likely not for 24 hours. Ariel had other ideas about that and made it his goal to get them as soon as they were hot off the presses.
We stopped for breakfast. Finally! I remember we stopped at Dunkin Donuts for some more of their pumpkin filled donuts. Earlier, for my birthday Ariel brought me some and they were filled with real pumpkin filling, like a pie. On this day it was more like a pumpkin flavored custard filled donut which lacked the impact and deliciousness of the first ones, unless it was just that particular store that was faltering but whatever the reason, they were quite dissatisfying.
And once back home the waiting game began. 4 o’clock arrived like a gunshot at a relay race and Ariel was on the phone, calling Dr. David who, as it turned out, had already been sent the results and his take on them was that the tumor had begun to shrink.
When I was diagnosed back on July 31, the mass had measured 15cm x 8.3cm (5 29/32in x 3 17/64in) and after this PET scan it had melted down to 9.1cm x 4.8cm (3 37/64in x 1 57/64in). Good news indeed, and the cancerous activity seemed to be a minimum.
We were happy. But I still had two more treatments to go (at least), so we remained cautiously optimistic for the time being but we had something positive to share on our upcoming first major outing since the end of July.

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Judging A Book, or, On Being An Armchair Juror

June 20, 2013

Going back to the conversation on these televised trials, I have an observation that kind of bugs me and I want to see if I’m the only one who thinks the way I do.

As I mentioned I’m watching the jury selection for the George Zimmerman case, which is quite tedious, but on a streaming website rather than on TV, A) because it focuses solely on the interviews and Roman numeral B–thank you, Butchie–I can’t cope with all the commercial breaks. I am missing those tidbits that come to light every so often on the Jodi Arias case. I’m telling you, I’m obsessed with it and it’s obvious I’m giving her even more publicity, I guess. And the over-emotional and over-modulated reactions of the news commentators every step of the way.

So the thing that’s making me wince in frustration with these prospective jurors is how they each have the same response or so it seems; I don’t watch the news because they only put their own slant on it. Well, the way I look at it, don’t we all have our own slant on things? They don’t watch the news or haven’t read about it, but they know the details of the case. How does that happen, anyway?

The lawyers for the state and defense are trying to stress that what is heard on the news, of course, is not evidence–what they refer to as facts– is only what is presented in court and so how could one make a rational decision until evidence is presented. Also, a verdict is not reached by popular consensus or by bias. Because everyone is innocent until proven guilty, even if it’s known, as in the Jodi Arias case, the accused actually did commit the crime, though that case was to determine if the murder was premeditated.

But then comes the question on the integrity of the evidence that’s presented during the trial. Again, like with the Arias trial, her testimony and case was based on the myriad lies she concocted over time–that she was nowhere near the murder scene; that two ninja-like thugs entered and shot and mutilated Travis and nearly killed her; that Travis attacked her because she dropped his camera and she had to defend herself. Of course all those lies caught up with her, but also allegedly unbeknownst to the jury (as they had been admonished against watching TV or gathering other information about the case on their own in any other way), there were pieces of evidence that never made it before the jury, because they might have been considered prejudicial. Well, to me, evidence is evidence. Lay it all out there.

And how are these facts concocted? It seems like each side spins everything to fit their own need. Isn’t that bias? Isn’t that what the attorneys are preaching against? That reminds me of someone creating a computer generated depiction of an event and presenting it as gospel. And to that end, when either side puts an expert on the stand, that expert is allowed to give his or her opinion. Well, opinion is not fact.. His face was smeared with chocolate ice cream. It’s obvious he likes chocolate ice cream. His face was smeared with chocolate ice cream. It’s obvious it was forced on him. Either one works.

So, really, in the end, one true fact remains, that a crime had been committed and then it’s the jury’s job to weed through all that muck and voice their opinions anyway and decide the case. It’s just better when everyone shares that same opinion, hence the hung jury.

i-Yi Yi

June 14, 2013

Look at this!  I’m actually blogging.  How long has it been? February. I remember it well. I think it was still snowing on here when I last posted something. It snows automatically during the winter months. I feel bad I didn’t blog more so that you could see the snow. Alas…

I’m here because I came across something totally silly and I’m thinking useless to give Dad for Father’s Day but before I get to that, let me catch you up.

First, I admit, I am going through Jodi Arias trial withdrawals.  After that insult to the justice system that was the verdict in the Casey Anthony trial, I swore I would never get attached to another trial until, well, Jodi Arias. Good Lord what a fiasco, but ever so entertaining and thankfully the jury found her guilty of M1 and of extreme cruelty in the manner in which she murdered her ex, Travis Alexander. But dash it all they were hung on the death sentence phase and now in July, the trial resumes anew with a fresh jury to hear the case one more time. And hopefully this one will see fit to put her down. But now the duh-fense (as I’ve seen them referred to) is hoping to delay further proceedings until after Christmas, A) because the attorney has a full plate of other cases and B) to give them time to build a more convincing case of just how wonderful Jodi Arias is.  But I’m like Pavlov’s dog; any mere mention of Jodi Arias and I’m all over it.

Ugh, and now comes the George Zimmerman case and I’m listening to the tedious interviews with prospective jurors. And in between was the little known Brett Seacat trial. He was charged with first degree murder of wife.  God, Helen Keller could have seen that one coming.

Anyway, it’s now June and after seeing my nutritionist recently, discovered that since November I am down a cool 27 pounds.  That’s nearly 6 bags of sugar, something I don’t see myself carrying around at my local ShopRite for any length of time. Phew. I’m loving it. And I’m also loving how my 34 waist jeans even have room to spare.

And One Life to Live and All My Children have returned to the cyber airwaves. The magical date was April 29 and at 5:30 am, before Ariel left for work and the gym, we watched it. Now we watch it like we always did, after dinner in the den on the big TV, through HuluPlus. But there’s more drama than what’s on the screen and I’ll get into that later. But first….

Father’s Day.  I supposed you could give it or get it any time but since I saw it as a gift suggestion for Dad’s day…

You know how tedious it is to do just about everything these days from cooking spaghetti to watering your lawn with a hose that kinks (actually, I’m dying to try that expanding hose that fits in your pocket <insert whatever snide and crude joke you want here….I have!>).  Well now it’s been determined that barbequing and keeping an eye on your meat is just too much, especially if you have guests, like Kip, you know, the one with his sweater tied across his shoulders, the one that compliments the freshly pressed button down Oxford shirt; I just don’t know why he wears white slacks to a barbeque…goof!

It’s called the iGrill.  It’s a blue tooth meat thermometer (sold separately for around 80 bucks) that communicates with an app you download to your phone and it lets you know when your meat is cooked.  I usually use a knife when I’m unsure and continue cooking til it looks like how I like it. Or, at the very best, for those bothersome guests who prefer to walk away from my barbeques botulism-free, I can dust off the trusty meat thermometer to help guarantee their safety. And I’ve never really had a problem carrying on a conversation while my burgers were gilling. And with iGrill, you can connect with other users to keep track of what they are cooking. I say, who cares?

The next thing you know iErection will be available to let you know when… well, you know. And, most assuredly, it will connect with all your friends…

For my money, I think a nice gesture for Dad would be to give him a cold beer and let him watch you wash his car. Then take him out to dinner and let someone else take the rap for undercooked food.

Easy Just Got Easier

February 13, 2013

Here’s something I just don’t get and I would be remiss if I didn’t quote Sweet Brown with a definitive, “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That.”  Thanks to my niece, I can now put fact to fancy, in regards to that recent Facebook staple of Sweet Brown’s face and response to all sorts of situations, ie, shoveling now because the snow blower blew up.

Now, we all know how technology allegedly makes our lives so much easier; cell phones that double as portable pocket-sized computers and the world is instantly within reach.  Then came the larger, slightly more cumbersome than a cell phone, but less than a laptop, iPad, which does everything except make a phone call. At press time, I think that’s still the case. But I’m a poor boy who doesn’t get out much so am not privy to the seemingly ever changing world from one day to the next.

Not only can the larger iPad do most things including download digital books so John Q Public on the go doesn’t have to be bothered with carrying around a suddenly troublesome tome, like, say, Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier or Mightier Than The Pen, by Brian K Sigley, the latter of which mainly because it remains unpublished.  But continued steps are being taken to correct that heinous oversight. And of course, in that vein, there are also “tablets” dedicated solely to downloading books and things of that nature. So, all in all, this fairly lightweight, half inch thick instrument is the portal to the world and delivers it right into the palms of your hands, sometimes without even getting out of your PJ’s.  What could be easier?

Apparently, there is something to make even that easier. I now realize, thanks to an email Ariel got from an online vendor just how difficult andipad holder inconvenient it is to have to hold an iPad in your hands, or even in your lap. It never dawned on me the precious few times I’ve actually held one just what a chore it actually is. There is now an adjustable floor stand that will hold your device securely at the corners with no less than four rubber straps, at each corner; the table  tilts, swivels and adjusts to any height you may need. As you can see in the photo, it’s nothing short of accommodating. Apparently, it even yaws, according to the description. And you know I’m all for yawing. I can’t stress that enough.

Oh boy. Well, I guess if you’re a rabid tablet user you might find it useful, especially while laying down. Who needs an iPad crashing down on your face while you fall asleep?  Well, now you don’t have to worry because you can adjust this stand for that as well. Good lord…

This kind of reminds me of the ridiculousness of Eggies, but that’s another story, which, I may have told already at some point.

On that note, I think I’ll go put my hair up in curlers and strap my cell phone to my wrist because I just can’t bear to have to pick it up should I want to use it later.

A Little More or Less

February 7, 2013

Well, here it is, February. The Ravens won the Superbowl and Beyonce gyrated her way across the stage, half singing, half encouraging the audience to sing along with her. After all the falderal or her lip-syncing at the Presidential inauguration, her purpose was to prove that she could sing “live.”  Well, the viewing public was wowed by the spectacle of her performance, but I feel she fell short in the “live” singing department. I guess some recording artists are just spectacle.

The groundhog predicted an early spring, and just in time, too. There’s a pending snowstorm heading this way for the weekend. How much snow will we get? Tune in on Sunday when the storm has passed and find out which meteorological wizard came closest to the predicted amounts of 1-3″; 3-5″, 4-8″ or even close to 10″. That’s the job to have, being a weatherman. You can be wrong any percentage of the time in predicting the weather and still keep your job. If you’re right, you’re a hero. If you’re wrong and the  weather isn’t as bad as you first thought, you’re a hero, thanks to Mother Nature’s capriciousness. If you’re wrong and the turnout was worse, you’re sympathetic thanks to Mother Nature’s eccentricities.

And, I suppose, most importantly, we have a new Monopoly game piece. Yes, the voting is over and the announcement was made yesterday morning. Gone is the beloved iron in favor of the cat. It’s hoped that the new game piece will strengthen sales and make the game more relevant. Hmm. I voted on Facebook and suggested to keep the pieces as they are. Another good suggestion (not mine) was to include the proposed new pieces in a blister pack and let the gamer have a wider choice. Parker Brothers probably eschewed the blister pack idea from past experience of how frustrating it is to get any brand of nasal decongestant tablet out of a blister pack. I didn’t want o miss my opportunity to vote on something that doesn’t really matter like I apparently did when I missed my chance to vote on the new colors for M&M’s way back when and now my favorite–Tan–is a mere memory in favor of blue.  Who eats a blue M&M? I don’t. I actually haven’t had M&M’s since.

I saw this curiosity on the news yesterday as well. It’s the Intimacy 2.0 dress. It’s sort of like a mood dress, that changed colors, depending on the wearer’s body heat.  The intent actually, is to indicate whether a woman is being impressed by a man, say at a bar. The more he gets her heart racing, the clearer the dress will become.  If he’s a toad, the dress will stay opaque. Nothing says casual Friday like the Intimacy 2.0.

Speaking of seeing a little “too much”, there’s a situation over in Japan. In the town of Okuizumo there stands a 16-foot replica of Michelangelo’s David. It stands in a large public park that includes a baseball stadium, tennis courts, a mountain bike course and a children’s play area. Whoops. There’s the rub. “They are statues of unclothed humans and such pieces of art work are very rare in our area. Some people said the statues might not be good for their children” said town official Yoji, Morinaga. Some locals have accepted the classic work of art for what it is, but others have asked for David to wear underwear. Then there’ll be the argument over which brand. How about just a fig leaf? Or hang a bird feeder off “him”.

Man, they’re all over this over there. Earlier this week a Tokyo based photographer was arrested for selling books containing photos of male genitals and could be jailed for up to 2 years or fined up to 2 and half million yen ($27,000) if convicted of obscenity.

While pornography is widely available and produced in Japan, under domestic law, genitals must be obscured by some means, usually pixellation.  Hmm, well then it’s not really pornography, is it?

groucho

What else? That’s it for now.  Later!