sunday/monday to do

Because I love a list.

  1. laundry – bring in rags and towels already on line, hang out lights, start load of darks
  2. post microburst tidying outside: sweep steps and sidewalks, rake random mulch bits back into place, possibly trim edges
  3. scoop out poopy chicken straw, offer to neighbor whose garden took a beating in the storm and it’s clean up.  Also give her plants to make up for ones the chickens killed
  4. turn on ac
  5. scrub bathrooms
  6. vacuum – floors, rugs, furniture
  7. call to schedule cd 3 baseline wanding
  8. call to get low-down on starting stims
  9. pick pits out of jam, transfer to jar
  10. buy coffee and new razor
  11. cry about the neighbors moving
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put your money where your mouth is

Sometime ago, my grandfather was a little boy who shined shoes and cleaned spittoons in downtown LA.  To follow a certain line of reasoning, he lived the American dream:  he went to trade school, got married to a pretty girl, moved out of the city to a little town with cute houses and avocado groves, which has since been swallowed by sprawl, but that’s another story.  He worked hard and treated his big city like a small town.  he liked to go dancing with his wife and have afternoon drinks with his friends.  All his kids went to college and he put away money for each of his grandkids to do so as well.

I didn’t, though.  Go to college that is.  I took that money and used it to buy a house 8 years ago, right before the market here exploded.  By some stroke of luck or grit or something, housing in my neighborhood has not lost value in the past few years, so my house is worth far more than what I paid for it.  Last Friday, I closed on a loan to refinance my house.  A cash out refinance loan, which will pay for IVF.  Turns out I had the money all the time.

When I was a little girl, my grandpa would call me sometimes, and after telling me that California was God’s country and wondering why I lived in Virginia and then insisting that I refer to myself with my mother’s maiden name included with all my other names, he would ask me for a loan.  “I need $50, Starrhillgirl!”  he’d say.  Only he’d use my first and middle names instead.  Then he’d talk about how he just needed this little loan for a little bit and that he’d pay me back really soon.  With interest!  And so I’d send him a check in the mail.  $50.  And a little bit later, I’d get a check back.  For $100.

I figured out pretty quickly that this was a sort of scam in my favor, one that was probably sort of fun for him and was designed to teach me the value of putting money away.  But, as an adult, when I think about it, I wonder if what I learned in addition to that was that being generous with your money is right.  I am, clearly, reaping the benefits of his generosity as well as getting the reward for having put my money away in the right way at the right time.  I wish he were here still so I could call him up to see if he needed a loan.  I wouldn’t charge him any interest this time.


tardy dispatch from the north

See, I’m home now – ah, home *sigh* – but I didn’t get a chance to follow up with pictures from LI.  Pictures!  Let’s see if I can get wp to play nice.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Well, I can’t figure out how to caption anything, so I’ll give you a down and dirty narrative to read to yourself as you watch the slideshow.

When I went up north, we went clamming, and by we I mean that the gf clammed and I sat on the beach in the sun.  She *loves* clamming!  She got a lot of clams and put them in  a bucket.  Then we took them home and ate them with lemon and horseradish.  The end.


duce et decorum est

I spent the weekend up on Long Island – Memorial Day, that is.  And there were flags and a parade and general merriment. And I forgot, as I shouldn’t, that this particular holiday might should be remembered differently.  Go read Bionic’s post from Monday.

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots4
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! –  An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering,11 choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud12
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est
Pro patria mori.

– Wilfred Owen