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Operation: Take Back The Patio–Day 1

June 23, 2010

My first day out on my hortulan* mission yesterday was rather successful and it was probably the least exhaustive leg of the entire project; cutting down and yanking out the overgrowth. What a variety of every conceivable greenery from tall woody things with tiny little orange flowers to things with thorns an inch long and believe it or not, a grape vine and everything imaginable in between. And let’s not even get into the spider population. Good grief, daddy long legs with bodies the size and color of…if I said pennies you’d think I was exaggerating, but not by much. While I worked, I tried to think back to what in my life might have triggered my halting fear of spiders but my desire to get the job done overtook my attention. I have an idea of what it might have been though but I’m not 100% certain.

 Years ago, in my old neighborhood when we were all kids together, one of my friends had a pool in his yard. Not a very big pool, one of those 2 foot pools and everyone was in it. Everyone but me, that is. They weren’t letting me in. See? Even then I needed Rent-A-Friend. So, while I was standing outside the pool, I remember suddenly looking down and seeing a HUGE daddy long leg crawling up my leg.   It had to have a leg span of 4 inches and it seemed like it covered my entire thigh. But at an age in the single digits, 4 inches probably did cover my entire thigh. I remember my reaction was pretty much as it remains today, a not quite blood curdling scream. My then best friend tried splashing water on it and blowing it but on it climbed. I don’t remember much after that but I’m also certain I never made it into the pool.

So, here is a shot of what got accomplished on day 1.


Hold onto your hats, folks, I have a newsflash for you.  A new study suggests that  chasing Ninjas and shooting aliens for extended periods of time (sometimes up to 10 hours a day)  is NOT very good excercise. Oh sure, they’re all good for eye/hand coordination but in the long run, scientists have found these cyber warriors to have the lung function and aerobic capacity of a 60 year old chain smoker. They warn that if gamers don’t start getting out to play real games, they’ll face a whole host of problems in the future.

On to brighter topics. Yesterday afternoon while I was watching the archived Radio Chick show on Shovio from Monday, The Chick announced a streaming app available for a variety of smart phones and mine was included. I found the app and now, I can listen, not watch, (which is a-okay in a pinch) the shows from each preceding day. There was also supposed to be a way to watch the show live, but for the Droid it’s on version 2.2 and naturally I’m one point shy. But maybe they’ll work on that. So that new app made me fall in love with my Droid all over again.

And speaking of The Chick, I got this following video from her. I can’t imagine what the woman in the video was thinking or if she even was and I can only imagine what will ever become of the kids later in life. I also have to wonder who was shooting this video…Daddy? It’s so disturbing that it’s actually pathetically funny. Mother of the year!


*Hortulan: of or pertaining to gardening.

Ad Nauseum

June 22, 2010

I’m preparing yet another updated version of my agent query letter to send out. I found an agent who represents the type of book I wrote and she will be begin accepting submissions again on a certain date a few weeks from now. I read a few sample queries on her blog that she really likes to receive so I have to tailor mine to fit that model. As usual, you’ll be updated.

My trip to the dentist yesterday was a success although I was mistaken with the procedure he was going to do. What he did was replace some old silver fillings that were starting to fall apart. He did mention bonding on the back teeth the last time I was there for my cleaning two weeks ago, but maybe he meant that for another point in time.

I have a new project I’m beginning, hopefully later this afternoon. I see it’s supposed to storm later in the day than I plan on being outside so with any luck that will hold and my first day of my new pet project won’t be a wash out, literally. A few years ago we installed a fenced in stone patio down at the end of our property by the canal and we used it when we could. It was quite a trek down there when we’d ever have a party outside and even more so at the end of said party when we’d all be half in the bag and having to lug all the stuff up the hill back to the house. Last summer, Nature began to reclaim her space with a vengeance shooting weeds the size of small trees up through the stones and also the ground cover under stone and I kept up with is as best I could. Well, the battle has been lost and now it looks like an episode of The History Channel’s “Life After People”. After I saw what had become of my once pristine hideaway, I felt like that Indian in the TV commercial. I’ll take an hour or so each day to work on it during my lunch break and maybe turn it back into the patio it once was, or maybe that could be my garden area I’ve always wanted or perhaps I’ll just surrender it back to Mother.

I should have someone work with me. I could rent a friend on Rent A execpt apparently no one in my area wants to be friends with anyone. I did a quick sample search with my zip code, which is how you get started, and there are people all over the state of New Jersey and even Staten Island.  Ah yes, RentAFriend, where the cost starts at $10/hour (or negotiate for a fair fee when applicable) for someone to accompany you in a strange city, or someone to go to the movies with or go out to eat or for whatever other platonic activity you have in common but I don’t see any options for menial labor. At any price. Well, there was one “friend” in my area, but he was geared more for party planning and this work ain’t gonna be no party.  Maybe I should try Rent A Handyman. Actually, believe it or not there is a service called Rent A Husband. That’s the one for around the house stuff. But I’m going to go with Rent A Brian and save myself the money and have that sense of satisfaction and the sore back to complain about at the end of it.

I almost forgot for the second day in a row. Our weigh ins this past weekend remained the same as last week.  I guess that’s better than it being more, right?