One From Column A and Two From Column B

ImageI recently read a book; a psychological thriller I later learned.  While it was well written, I didn’t like it.  I didn’t like it at all.  Why?  Because it was about the horrible mind games people can play with each other.  I like psychological thrillers, mind you.  I really enjoyed all the Girl With Dragon Tattoo, etc.; and they were pretty rough books.

But this particular book made me so sad because it dealt with a married couple who simply could do nothing but hurt each other in new and vicious ways.

You see…I love the stuffin’ outta Devoted Spouse.  Here’s just one reason:  He labels our Chinese take-out boxes with our initials so when I want to finish what I ordered, I don’t have to waste time opening all the boxes.

So, in a way, reading the terrible book was good for me because it reminded me how loved I am!  sigh…

The Stuff Headaches are Made Of

There I was reclining happily in bed with my Darth Vader-masked spouse by my side and my trusty canine at my feet.  Life was good.  I was soaking up the latest Kellerman mystery, when I came upon a word that surprised me.  The author said something like this…”the apartment complex was shaped like a rhombus.”  I nudged the masked wonder next to me in the ribs and pointed to the word “rhombus” on my Kindle and said to him, “Huh?  What’s that?”  Devoted Spouse responded, “It’s a geometric shape.”  I said, “Hmmm, I thought it was a monkey.”  “No,” Devoted Spouse replied, “that’s a rhesus.”  “No, I said, “that’s a peanut butter/chocolate candy.”  This went on for awhile.  He put his CPAP mask back on and I was on my own again.

I used the little pointer thingy on my Kindle to space down to the word “rhombus” and the definition was “parallelogram.”  Well, now we’re talking.  I remember from 10th grade Geometry what a parallelogram is.  I read on.  I went back to the word “rhombus.”  I stopped reading and imagined in my odd little head a building shaped like a parallelogram.  It made no sense.  I leaned over the masked man and waving my arms to get his attention, I yelled, “This makes no sense!”  He un-masked and rolled his eyes.  I told him I understood a parallelogram.  “So a rhombus is a type of parallelogram?” I asked.  “I still don’t really get this.”   He got out of bed, walked around to my side, reached into the nightstand, got out paper and pen, and proceeded to draw a parallelogram for me.  “Aha!” I proclaimed.  “There’s no way on God’s green earth that an apartment building would look like that…it would fall over on itself.  What a stupid description!”

I returned to my reading knowing full well the apartment building in question looked exactly as I pictured it in my mind and not as the author described it.  Devoted Spouse masked up again, EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer put her head back down, and life was good…sigh…

English 101 Again

courtesy of allaboutbirds.org

It doesn’t take much to make me happy.  Sometimes just a word can do the trick.  The correct word, mind you.

Those of you who follow me know I become crazed when someone butchers the English language.  This does not include differences between my Canadian or British friends – go ahead and toss in an extra vowel where you will, or change spelling.  I won’t quibble.

Today I found validation and vindication!  And of all places, I found it in a novel.  This novel has been on my bookshelf for quite some time gathering dust.  I discovered it the other day and realized I had not read this particular book.  Turns out, it’s a very good novel.  I am thoroughly enjoying it.  And then I find something that simply shakes me to my core.

You see, for many years I have been trying in vain to explain to people that the breed of bird one sees frequently in North America is the Canada goose (or Branta canadensis).  If there is a single bird in your yard, it is a Canada goose.  If a few more of these majestic birds gather in your yard, you have a flock of  Canada geese, NOT Canadian geese. STOP CALLING THEM CANADIAN.  Pluralize the ‘goose’, not the ‘Canada’.  Ack.

This has finally been validated for me in the novel Amagansett by Mark Mills.  On page 262, one of the characters is questioned on what he hunts.  He replies, “Canada goose.”  Yippee Skippy!!  Finally, someone other than myself understands this point.

I’d like to meet this author and thank him!  Truly, you have no idea how many times I have struggled with this issue in a conversation.

At the very least, I will purchase his next book.  I am vindicated…sigh

Cookbooks, Cookbooks, and Not a Thing to Eat

Been on a cleaning out and fixing up kick around here lately. Out with old furniture, in with new; painting walls — kind of my version of Spring cleaning only in the Fall.  (ok so I’m running behind a little.)

I have what I thought was a mini-project in my kitchen.  Turned out to be a little more work.  A solid oak 3-shelf bookcase resides at the end of my kitchen counter and it is chocked (and I do mean chocked) full of cookbooks.  Oh yeah, plus the flashlight, pencil sharpener and that weird sticky thingy that spins and you roll it on your clothes to get rid of Golden Destroyer hair.

The latest idea was to replace that bookcase with a pie safe – and no, not for pies but for closed storage.  The pie safe came from the ‘unfinished wood’ store and Devoted Spouse lovingly stained it and made it gorgeous.  And it’s done.  Most projects taken on by Devoted Spouse take a few years to complete (he’s busy) but this one was finished in an extraordinarily fast time.  So fast, that I haven’t had time to sort out my cookbooks and get ready.

Wednesday morning all the cookbooks came out of the bookcase.  Oh my aching back.  Why would anyone collect Southern Living Cookbooks dating back to the 1980s?  What was I thinking?  Do I use them?  No.  Those ‘southern’ recipes have too much fat and sugar in them and I’m basically too lazy to re-invent them. And there’s also that little problem of chopping and dicing — I tend to chop and dice my fingers, not the chicken.    But I can’t get rid of the books.  You see….I’m a closet cookbook hoarder.  There…it’s out.

I have hundreds and hundreds of cookbooks, most of which are stored in the basement.  And now, my beloved Southern Living books are there too…with the exception of the current edition, last year’s Christmas edition, and the 40th Annual edition.  And then, I HAD to keep the Barefoot Contessa books, and my Hungry Girl books, and a few crockpot recipe books, and, and, and, oh crap where are all these stupid books gonna go in the new pie safe?  The pie safe is supposed to hold all the miscellaneous cooking gadgets I don’t have room for in my cabinets.

I truly enjoy collecting the cookbooks;  I love to read them, but I rarely use them.  I may pick a recipe here or there but I’m just not the cook I used to be.  That’s how I packed on 45 pounds – home cooking.  So now so many poor books sit in the basement all alone with no one is gazing at their lovely pages or marking their recipes.  They’ve been relegated to the dungeon.  The shame of it all.  But get rid of them?  NEVAH!  … sigh

I Simply Couldn’t Resist the Bargain

Recently, Amazon.com bought out a company known as Woot.com.  In celebration (or anticipation?) Woot.com offered a one-time good deal on the latest generation Kindle.  $149.00.  Yep – Amazon is still selling the latest generation (6″) for $189 but that one day on Woot.com I got it for $149.00.  I know…sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?

This stuff never happens to me.  Oh I find bargains – but not bargains like this.  I worry now that I have bought my amazingly-priced Kindle at $149.00, Amazon will start advertising it at  $130 – since they and Barnes & Nibbles keep having a price war.   That’s the kind of luck I normally have.

I don’t care.  I told all my friends if the Kindle got down to around $150 I would buy one.  People started sending me links to Woot.com when that advertisement hit; I had already seen it and ordered (okay a bit apprehensively I admit).  I know nothing about Woot.com except I am now a FB fan because their writers are hysterical and the website is well done — with specials every day.  It seems a good place to shop – I dunno yet; I will reserve judgment until my actual Kindle arrives in working order with everything it’s supposed to have in the box.

I get a bit nervous when I take a leap of faith in a retailer I know nothing about.  I’ve had problems in the past and some of them have gone unresolved and been filed under the category “Lessons Learned”.   Woot.com tells me my Kindle should arrive in about 5 business days.   Let’s see…counting for the 4th of July holiday I figure I should have it either Fri the 9th or Mon the 12th of July. 

I’m already making a list of books to order.  Like I don’t have enough to read….oh no I may not have time to blog!  …sigh…

P.S.  Go here to read Woot.com’s blog – wish they’d hire me to write copy for them – I can be funny.  Well, I can.  Just ask my 11 faithful readers!

P.P.S. If you’re looking for lots of neat photos for your blog that are in the public domain may I suggest trying here?