Thoughts and photos by Lois. It's supposed to be funny, or thought-provoking, or both.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Pella of a Quote

Actual conversation with Lori 73130:
Lori: We're thinking of getting our windows on the north side of the house replaced.
Lola: Why, what's wrong with them? Your house is so new!
Lori: Seems like they're leaking tons of cold air, cheap a$$ windows.
Lola: Oh you have the CAW 29 rating -- they leak 29% of the cold air in. (laughing). I have those on my south and west facing walls, they leak in 29% of the heat.
Lori: Yeah but the quote came back at $15,000 for them.
Lola:  WHAT!?! Are you kidding me, why so much?
Lori: Well they're like 7 feet tall by 4 feet wide. (sorry Lori I may have misremembered the dimensions). These are some big a$$ windows.
Lola: Oh so you're paying the BAM, the big a$$ markup -- (more giggling).
Here the convo degenerates into a discussion of how they could get the $22,000 windows with tint in order to qualify for a $1,500 energy credit. Wow.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

When You Give A 3 Year Old A Camera

Interesting things happen. Yes, it makes me feel like I have motion sickness, but the photo composition is really interesting. Photo credit: Lanes March 2010.
Another cool kid shot: Romes age 5.5, from a moving car with a point n shoot camera.  He resets the photo effects himself (to sepia in this case). He takes amazingly well-designed shots. Look out, Ansel Adams... Photo credit: Romes March 2010, in a windstorm on southbound Val Vista Drive.

Halloween 2010 Concept 3

Hmmm. Not sure what her superpower is, perhaps suprisingly lethal upper body strength?  Delts that make aging high school jocks cry? With this costume on, I'm not sure it really matters.  Time to start lifting - I have 7 months.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Word of the Day

Try working this into casual conversation:

defenestrate \dee-FEN-uh-strayt\, transitive verb: To throw out of a window.

What a great, underutilized word...then I can't quite recall which, but in one John Irving book the characters said "Keep passing the open windows."

Shine On - Cindy Joseph Quote

There's a lot of information out there about feeling happy, being happy, getting happier and the like, but I appreciated this analysis, from an interview with Cindy Joseph in Experience Life magazine:

You've said that embracing pleasure plays a big role in your vitality and happiness. How do you balance pleasure with daily responsibilities and obligations?

I accept that I am the one who creates my obligations. And I always make choices I believe will add pleasure to my life. If I wind up feeling obligated (which is never pleasurable), generally someone else is involved. I check in with them and do what it takes to change the situation so all parties involved are satisfied. If anyone involved is losing, everyone involved loses - and that does not result in pleasure. I remind myself that I always have a choice; I can change any situation so that it becomes pleasurable or I can recognize the pleasure and value that is already there. I've found that living with integrity and being responsible give me pleasure.

Easier said than done -- but a good balance for which to strive.

Photo credit: "Joy: Get Some" taken by Mr. George, summer 2009!

Monday, March 22, 2010

LoSpace PSA: the correct word is XERISCAPE

It's NOT "zeroscape." Xeriscape from the greek xeros meaning "dry."  Not zero, meaning, uh, zero. Lots of rocks and cactus and plants that don't need much water.

If you don't believe me (which, if you're reading this, you probably do) check wikipedia: The word xeriscaping is a portmanteau of xeros (Greek for "dry") and landscape. On a sidenote, may I just say I love the word "portmanteau" -- I so wish that would come back into usage (from literal French carry + cloak), it used to mean a big suitcase, but which through Lewis Carroll coinage means a combination of two words, as in Jabberwocky where "slithy" means "lithe and slimy" and "mimsy" is "flimsy and miserable." Oops, is my English major showing again (tugging clothing down surreptitiously)...

Back on topic, xeriscape could also be called "not safe for kidscape" ... but usually Arizona kids know to give the cactus a wide wide berth...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

A Little Yeats Moment

When I say I'm an English major, that really means "English literature" and I spent a few years on those roads -- in my literature time at university, Yeats really brought it home. I tried to write a paper on this poem when I was an undergrad, and today, I find my analysis fairly laughable. Thanks to my Harvard-trained prof for the grace to attempt to take it seriously.  The poem (and that professor's tact) mean exponentially more today. W.B. Yeats -- here's to you, relevant here and now (and what a great dissolute sketch below)...

Sailing to Byzantium (1928)

That is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
---Those dying generations---at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unaging intellect.

An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.

O sages standing in God's holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.

Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Lucky Brand, Lucky Day!

He is exactly like on tv -- oh, right -- that makes sense, considering he's not an actor. Awesome!

Now You Know: Dress Codes at the Evil Empire

I'd like to see photos of Debra's WalMart outfit and her Dollar Palace outfit. When we needed some hardware to repair a table at 11pm, my sister and I had to go to WalMart. I was wearing a tank top, flip flops and jam pants. She burst out laughing when I asked her if I should put on jeans or something more before we headed over. "What?!? That's practically the shopping uniform over there at this time of night!"

We just have 99Cents store and Dollar Tree here. Now I'm not sure what to wear next time I go there...

Photo credit: Thanks Rochelle (or whoever sent it to you!!!)...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ugg Boots, Ugh!

Experts debate dangers of wearing popular sheepskin boots

Seriously? This is an actual story online. The author found some experts to comment that this boot style has a lack of ankle support and may allow people's arches to flatten. If they're worn all the time. WOW....Can you say "slow news day?" First, could they actually be worse than flipflops? Or platforms? Or house slippers? Who is wearing these enough to actually cause foot injury? Since they look like costume boots from movies like "BraveHeart" -- it makes me wonder how the people of those eras survived such dangerous, self-injurious footwear. Oh that's right, when your expected lifespan is 45, it really doesn't matter so much.  I think the point of the story is to scare people into buying real "Ugg" boots, not the Payless-type offbrands.  Since they make me look like a troll, it's not a problem for me anyway. Now, back to my platforms.... 

Monday, March 15, 2010

A Tale of Two Helmets

Mom, does this make my head look big?

Photo credits: 12/25/07 and 2/16/10

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Mighty Lemonheads! (A Fat Free Food)

Fondly remembered: a box used to cost -- maybe a quarter or less?!?! Yes, in the seventies (back in the day!) value if you didn't have enough for a candy bar. Sweet, tart, and a little chewy on the inside -- YUM! Also, the empty box could be a whistle if you opened one end and left the other end closed. This bag sells for $1.99. Then I saw a "big" box, maybe half this quantity at Walgreen's for 99 cents.  Cheap candy = awesome!  Fat free = ummmm hmmmmm.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Evil Empire Stays on My Naughty List

WalMart* (now with an asterisk instead of a star, why?!) remains stora non grata for me. I reluctantly made a minimal purchase there last week. Love the little message on the receipt...cleverly using that "dead space" to upsell the self checkout.  What target audience needs to be sold on using the self-checkout? Perhaps it is faster and easier, but "fun"?!?! Really? What freaks at WalMart think using a self checkout is "fun"? Is the word "convenient" too long or advanced for this space on the receipt?

In my experience, self checkout wasn't fast, either. The money sucker-in thingie kept rejecting my $1 bill. So I had to give it to the self checkout monitor and trade her for a less tattered one.  The funniest part was when she did a counterfeit exam on my rejected $1 bill, holding it up to the light and using her highly advanced counterfeit spotting skills to make sure I wasn't passing a fake SINGLE.  What?!?! Who would counterfeit $1 bills????!!! Apparently, a huge problem at WalMart...

Yes, still hating the Evil Empire...but laughing at it too.

Another Reason Shoes Are So Awesome!

From a poster in a local women's bathroom:
We can wear platforms - which is why there is no such thing as a 'short woman's complex'

Photo credit: taken while wearing platforms...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Outside In

Hmmmm -- would anyone notice if I go ahead and use this for indoor living room furniture?  Bet I could just wipe away the offending kid stains.  It looks pretty nice, and at $1549.99, I don't think I want to leave it out in the Arizona fact, have the people who design and price this furniture ever done a thermal resistance test in Phoenix? Would this last even two summers in our remorseless sun?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Swirl It Is Fun!!!

Swirl It at ValVista and Williams Field. Yes, I made fun of their sign in my blog last fall. They still have that sign..apparently no one involved in the venture read my blog BUT it's fun, easy, and affordable. We visited tonight -- they have 8 (I think) flavors of yogurt at any given time and about 60 toppings. Sold by weight, 39 cents an ounce. Each of us got a small portion and one topping; our total bill came to $3.  Not to mention I got 3 or 4 samples for FREE!  NICE!

The topping bar had pretty much anything you could ask for -- unrefrigerated, so no cookie dough -- but even Lucky Charms, Cap'n Crunch, Snickers, Oreos, tiny creme de menthes, gummy bears, sprinkles, and much much more. Oh yeah, and healthy fruit -- which we pretty much ignored.  Fortunately, the kids were occupied with the shiny green Jetsons space age stools and didn't notice the tempting array of sugar sugar and more sugar toppings.

They have games there to play while you eat as well -- nice!  Great value -- I will go back, weird logo and all...

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Meet Rich Bowers -- Facebook Resister

Rich Bowers is not on facebook, but his friends are. Some of them have adopted his photo as their ID photo in reverse protest. Now we are going to get his fan page going.  Facebook users, will you go and join his fan page?
United Friends of Rich Bowers

Come on!  What a cool dude -- just check out his pic -- clearly, you need to be his fan!!!

Random Tuesday Thoughts

  • I think the grandmother's clock is running faster every time I wind it, guess that's better than slower
  • I don't like this Folger's Caramel Drizzle flavored coffee
  • Glad another InFusion Groove class is over; I gotta get more comfortable teaching that format
  • But it did feel like a good workout
  • What is it, like 67 degrees in here
  • I like this book I'm reading EL Doctorow's Homer and Langley
  • Need to get to t-mobile and get a new phone
Random photo from Google I'm Feeling Lucky, Images:
Nice tie-in to Night at the Museum 2!! Good night!

Monday, March 08, 2010

The Emperor Penguin's New Groove

Mom, I need an emperor penguin costume for my summative (emphasis on emperor -- as if Mom would accidentally whip up a macaroni penguin costume instead)...Mom faced this challenge with good humor, a Goodwill coupon, and pinking shears. Believe it or not, the hat is what took longest! But it was a fun crafty craft project. Also, three cheers for adhesive backed felt -- a great innovation available at Michael's (yep, had a coupon for that too).

Before Romes went to this school, I didn't even know the word "summative," which is an interesting fact in itself (just ask my Scrabble opponents...). Now even Laney says it with authority.  We are now veterans of numerous K and 1 summatives, and of course -- craft projects.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Liberty Market: MWH MW MW MW MH

Liberty Market is awesome (from the Joe's concept restaurants, also love Joe's Farm Grill...) but the bathrooms are different -- sinks for everybody on the right and this row of doors on the left.  Applauding the concept of unisex, which cuts down wait times, but just a little curious...ok, couldn't resist, had to peek in and see what made the last bathroom "room" MH only -- it had just a low urinal, maybe 30 inches off the floor. Which actually, would be perfect for the 6-9 year old pee-ers. I am going to send my son in there next time to try it out...because really, if you're a man in a wheelchair, is that where you would want to pee?!?! I'm just sayin...

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Not Arthur, King of the Britons!

French Soldier: You don't frighten us with your silly knees-bent running around advancing behavior! 

(all hail... Sir Roman!)

Friday, March 05, 2010

One Less Facebook Friend...

I learned that a former co-worker died today. She was in her mid-40s and we worked together from 1999-2001. She was a class act all the way with a great sense of humor and shared love of shoes.  For her "ID photo" on our website, she put a picture of her Manolo Blahniks.  If memory serves me, I believe they were a pair of beautiful suede mules, kitten heel.

One day we were talking about color schemes for a company logo. I said orange connoted "value" (as in low prices, cheapness). I asked if anyone could think of a high-end brand with an orange logo. She immediately named Hermes, and she pronounced it correctly.

Cause is undetermined, possible heart attack.  Everyone, please get your annual check ups and don't wait if you're feeling ill -- get medical attention.  Here's to Diane W -- she will be missed.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Atomic LoSpace!

 Hmmm...thinking I will change my H'ween 2010 costume plan...Atomic Betty is freaking COOL!!!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Bloom Where You Are Planted...

Some horoscopes are made to be savored. Though today was only a 4 star day, and the phrasing is curiously awkward, the message was a keeper:
Some flowers only bloom once. You are not that kind of flower. Yours is a bloom that won't quit.
Here's to not quitting!
Trivia: Tulips continue to grow even after cut.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Something's Fishy...

This is Roman's self-created fish schedule (sceduwl for fish). I wish HE would follow a sceduwl like this...there's a lot of sleeping and eating. Awesome!  Frankly, I wish I had this sceduwl! 

PS I think the above picture is about 3 years old.
PPS He remains as attractive as ever...(see below, might as well face it, you're addicted to wii)

Monday, March 01, 2010

Grown Up Girls Rock!!!

Look who got a new booster seat!!! We are done with the 3 point harness (though Mom liked it for safety's sake). It's pink, it actually says "Girls Rock" on the headrest, it's got 2 cup holders, and it was on sale at The Happiest Store on Earth (TM). Not sure if she really likes it, judge for yourself. I'll save the receipt just in case...