Friday, March 30, 2007



Take Friday's off.

[evidently if you are not in work on friday you are not asked to
work the weekend.


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

where is weese

weees is out walking...

weese walks at lunchtime
weese eats lettuce at noon
weese goes to the gym after work
weese has stopped using the elevator
weese's fit wife makes her vegetables for dinner
weese does not want to buy new pants

Monday, March 26, 2007

Chapter 13 – Ranch Hands

(a sporadic continuation of the ‘FREE dog’ series)

Last night my sweet wife and I were catching up on several shows which we had recorded on our beloved DVR and flipping back and forth to the women’s games on ESPN.
Ah, Sunday night bliss.

Every so often I heard some noises from the direction of the kitchen. My clever wife pointed out that the FREE dog was in the kitchen guarding the chicken.
You see, the FREE dog would NEVER touch food on the counter however, she simply keeps an eye it.
She is as well behaved as they come.
And…since Ferris showed up unannounced this weekend my coddling wife made sure there was a ‘pot of something’ on the stove the entire time. Since Ferris is basically an eating machine – he can just take what he wants when he wants it.
The FREE dog is acutely aware of this system, and takes it upon herself to guard any food that may be left to fend for itself.
And so last night… since the chicken was sitting all by itself in the kitchen while we watched TV – it was the FREE dog’s job to remain by its side. We thought nothing of it.

When it was time for bed, I went to let the FREE dog out for her last pee of the night. This is our routine. She rarely actually leaves the stoop – because she knows when she comes in she will get a biscuit. I don’t really care that she doesn’t actually pee…she has never once had an accident in the house – so clearly she knows her own bladder.

However, when I went into the kitchen last night to find her - no dog... the chicken, forlorn and alone, on the stove.
I went upstairs.
No dog.

I vaguely remember letting her out earlier… tho we don’t really watch her when she goes out because the yard is well fenced. Had I left her out in the dark this entire time? …o dear! Poor thing.

I looked out the door… no dog.
Atho… she is a black dog and it was dark. As I went to call out to her, I heard the faintest little sound behind me at the side door.
The side door which leads to the driveway.
The driveway which is not surrounded by fence.

And there she was.
Waiting to come in.
Covered in mud.

This morning my clever wife found this.

And so we will walk the fence line.
Look for weak spots.
And begin to mend the fence.

Friday, March 23, 2007



Well, its spring here in New England.
ooo the horror of it
The thing about spring is... mud.
Well, also sand.
Its everywhere, and its coming into your home.

So spring is a good time of year to place an extra mat by the door. This will help in keeping some of that sand at bay.

But the best thing you can do for your floors right now is to simply keep them vacuumed. Just keeping the fine layer of sandy silt off the floors will keep them looking shiny and new.
Even if you are in the habit of slipping off your shoes, some of this silt still gets in and then acts like sandpaper as you paddle around in your slippered feet.

I don't recommend sweeping or even swiffering - as these methods rub the sand around the floor, and will dull the finish (tho I do like that swiffer for under the bed and dusting the walls... more on this another friday).

Thursday, March 22, 2007

no mice for weese

I checked the traps as soon as I got home yesterday.
I was, foolishly, worried.

Of course they were empty.

Really the biggest problem with this project at this point is my short attention span.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

o dear

I forgot to check the traps this morning.
O dear.

What are the odds...

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

And so we wait...

We moved the trap last night.

I figure they must really like it under the furnace if that's where they are keeping their extra paintballs.
Same bait... but we freshened it up.

So... why are we not successful in our mouse quest... I have some theories:
1. Perhaps we have no mice. (not sure how we would explain the paintballs then)
2. Our mice have peanut allergies.
3. Our mice are really smart.
4. Our mice are really dumb.
5. Paintballs are actually made from rat poison.

I have no evidence (yet) to support my 5th theory, but there is this odd odor (of death) in the basement these days. So that one gets my vote for now.

The trap was still empty when I checked it this morning.

Monday, March 19, 2007

a wise woman

Thank you Max for covering my tip-o-day on friday.
you could not have been more right!!!
Friday Tip-o-Day, courtesy queenmaxine
The first day of Spring is still about a week away. One would be wise to keep the snow thrower gas tank full and ready just in case Mother Nature decides it time for a laugh.
maxine | 03.16.07 - 11:04 pm | #

Not only did we have 6 inches of snow, followed by 6 inches of ice. But I also failed to check the gas tank.

About the mice....

**heavy sigh**
no mice yet.

There are several theories. But before I begin to postulate - we will try fresh bait and a new location this evening.

Tune in tomorrow for pictures and a recap.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Trap is Set

The traps are in place. Two of them. Let's see how we do.

Remember these are 'humane' traps. These mice will be re-located.
To get the mice to willing enter the trap, my coddling wife prepared a tasty treat for each trap.

She took a small saltine - well not just a saltine but a wheat saltine, with reduced sodium, from Trader Joe's. She put a dollop of peanut butter on the cracker. Well... not just peanut butter, but Jif. She says Jif is best because they put molasses into it. I have to agree... she needed to make several of these tasty treats as I kept eating them instead of loading the traps.

The directions said to place the trap along the wall, because evidently mice travel along the walls (tho this is not at all evidenced by the paint balls).

Since I am good at following direction - I place the trap along the wall.

Here is the door. See, it only swings one way.

See the tasty treat inside? Hard to resist, eh!

I will photograph the catch tomorrow (optimistic aren't I?).

(as Fran noted... I will check the traps often, otherwise the mice might expire. The would not be good karma)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


Look what we got.

Never touch another mouse again!

Its safe, clean... and IT WORKS!

Will keep you posted. More pictures to come.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

One of my first jobs as a teenage was at McDonald's. This was back in the 70’s – and McDonald's was not like it is today. There were high standards in our store. We were required to speak a certain way to customers, say certain things and present food in a specific manner.
• The bag must be folded neatly, away from the logo, three times and presented to the customer logo out.
• No customer should wait in line for more than 3 minutes.
• When addressing a customer you must always use: Sir, Mam, or Miss.
• After the order was taken you must always suggest to either up size or add on:
-- “Would you rather a large fries, sir.”
-- “Perhaps an apple pie with your order, Mam?”
We were actually tested on these standards by folks from corporate headquarters who would stand in line during lunch rush. They would note how we treated customers, the presentation of our food, and the timeliness of our service.

When there was down time we cleaned. The mangers would walk the front and check all the appliances and counters – they were to sparkle. You never stood idle. There was always something to prepare always something to wipe down.

Is it any wonder I thrived in this environment.
I do so love order and discipline. The army would really be a perfect choice for me… if it weren’t for all that fighting and killing and such.

I thought of my McD’s days this morning as I was dressing for work. But not the work itself… I was longing for a uniform. Granted, in the 70’s, we wore the most hideous of polyester outfits.
But conceptually …the idea appeals to me.

Get up, shower, toss on the uniform. Done.
No decisions.
What shirt will work with these pants, which socks and what shoes… what’s my mood, what’s the weather…

What I really want… is to wear a gi.

I don’t need variety. I just want to wear something that works.
Pure cotton, breathes well, roomy and comfortable, and good for the environment, washes up nicely, no ironing necessary. What is not to like.

I would have 3 or 4 plain ones (non bleached natural cotton)…and maybe one of these for nights out.

When they got old I would retire them to be gardening gi’s, or painting gi’s.

How simple my life would be, how tidy my closet would look.

Friday, March 09, 2007



I am continually trying to reduce my ecological footprint but there are some areas where I fall short.
One area is washing clothes. I tend to wash things each time I wear them.
I know this is not good ... all that water and electricity and even wear on the clothes themselves - but I just love clean, crisply folded clothes.

For items that I do re-wear, such as my many cardigan sweaters, it's important to let them air before putting them back in the closet. Did you know that one of the things that draws moths to your closet and drawers is putting away clothes that have been worn?

You can use a clothes valet or I just use a hook outside of my closet.
Just toss it on a hanger as you undress for the evening, then the next morning while you're dressing, pop it back into your closet.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

a little snow

There is snow on the driveway.
Night before last it snowed a little bit.
It’s more than a dusting…but certainly less than an inch.
We didn’t clear it.
So… its still there.

It’s below 10 here this morning.
So … it’s not going anywhere right now.
No melting today.

My patient wife tells me it will be near 60° next week.
Which means the snow will go away.
In a week.
She tells me not to worry.
But she knows…
I am waiting.

I couldn’t help myself this morning so I just quickly swept off the walkway.
She just smiled.
I feel a little better now.
Tho, there is snow on the driveway.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007


Out at Wednesday Wings Night this evening we were discussing the time change this weekend, The Daughter The Therapist says:
"I just don't know how I feel about living in a country where this president gets to decide what time it is."

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


I was reminded this past weekend of the first time I heard the story behind the Christian fish symbol.
The story was told to me by Dr. Lord, my Art History professor in college.
Dr. Lord was a stout woman who wore her gray hair short and slicked back. She had a deep gravely voice clearly attained from years of smoking. Dr. Lord was always smoking. Back when I was in college and especially in our art department, smoking in class was the norm. Little foil disposable ashtrays were even provided for our convenience.
So there we would sit in the dark looking at slides, smoking our cigarettes and listening to Dr. Lord’s gravely voice tell us stories of great works of art and architecture.

Dr. Lord’s smoking was a thing of great fascination, she would take these deep… long… draws on her cigarettes and hold… and then… she would begin to speak. She never exhaled and no smoke ever came out of that woman. She was like a smokeless ashtray.
We used to take seats in the back of class just to watch this in amazement.

But I digress… back to the fish.

Dr. Lord explained to us, between deep long draws on her Newport 100’s, that after the accession of Jesus, early followers of Christianity were somewhat persecuted. And so they devised a clever way of identifying each other in passing.
When two strangers met and thought maybe they were fellow believers, one of them would draw on the ground, perhaps casually with a walking stick, the upper half of the fish symbol.

Recognizing the symbol, the stranger would add a second curved line to complete the drawing of a fish.

I always liked this story… the whole secret society thing appealed to me – well except for the persecution part, but you get my drift.

What reminded me of this story was that I finally got around to adhering a Human Rights sticker to my car this weekend.

What I like about this symbol is that while it is widely know in my community it’s not readily recognized by the general populous.

I don’t personally feel persecuted, but it does make me feel like a part of some secret society … and I don’t mean that in the closeted sense.
I just like the idea of having it be seen on my car and immediately understood.
It conjures up ideas of perhaps meeting someone in the grocery store where my gaydar might be engaged and perhaps placing a string cheese strategically on the child seat in my shopping cart – only to have it added to by a pretzel rod from their cart….

Friday, March 02, 2007



The next time you get a big package delivered or perhaps buy an appliance – don’t toss out the box just because it’s too big to re-use for your next shipment.
Cut the box into panels for easy storage. These big pieces of cardboard can be used for all sorts of things from protecting photos to be mailed to making tag sale signs.

My favorite use is to keep some in the garage and occasionally lay them under our cars to check for leaks.

Thursday, March 01, 2007


I remember a really long time ago when we first got AOL dialup. What an amazing new world our 14k modem conjured up.
Logging into my first ‘chat’ room I watched conversations scroll by in awe... so many people coming and going in and out of the ‘room’. I was mesmerized, and soon worked up the courage to type ‘Hello’. It was titillating when someone replied. I called out to my offline wife… hey! I am actually talking to someone!

The novelty of chat rooms wore off– and over the years the internet has taken its place in our lives. It has stealthily replaced things like the yellow pages and several old and worn Rand McNally’s. It’s settled into a comfortable spot in our family and our home.
The internet has become a tool and the computer a mere appliance – albeit one that lacks much of the finesse that we have come to expect from our other appliances. Have you ever had to reboot your refrigerator?

Several years later… I was introduced to blogging. Again, as I did with the chat room… I watched and read quietly for some time. I can’t really remember how I found all of you, a link here… a comment there, but I was quickly wrapped up in your lives, checking in often to see what you were up to.

It wasn’t long before I couldn’t help but to comment. I had something to say.
In fact I found I had so much to say – that I eventually started my own blog.
I wanted you all to come by, I wanted you all to get to know me – as I had been getting to know you.
I was …and am…thrilled to be part of this innovative new community.

But where it gets really exciting and I suppose a little freaky… is how we can walk into a room to sit over food and drink, striking up one conversation after another as if we have been neighbors for all of this time we have been virtually visiting each other.
We wrap our computer generated (((arms))) around each other daily … and I was thrilled to find that to do it in person was just as natural, yet more fulfilling.
We have forged a close bond in our cloistered world of text, but I fear that meeting you all has proven something to all of us.

We want more.

We want to meet for a cocktail next Friday, or maybe if you happen to drive by the house and see my hard working wife out in the yard – you can swing into the driveway and roll down the window for a quick chat. How about running into each other at the supermarket, or a quick wave at a stop light.

Alas this is not our reality…

I love the internet for bringing us together and yet... our physical distance tears at my heart.
I love you all. I am so glad I was able to touch you (stop it Syd).
And so… as we fall back into our comfortable online relationships know that I truly hope we can touch again.