Wednesday, August 29, 2012

WNBP: Covered In Waffle...

I am absolutely stunned to suddenly find myself in the last week of summer vacation. It's been a long one this year.  We got out early and are going back later than usual.  That said, the whole thing seems to have passed in a blur.

My sudden and obsessive need to Finish All Things Or Die Trying continues unabated, but I fear I might be reaching the point where a bit of a sit down is in order.  Since I've been able to reset my router enough to make internet happen for a while, I'll kick back and enjoy a nice Wednesday Night Bullet Post.  Maybe that will be enough to reset my internal router and let me stop with the "doing of stuff" for a little while...

*I've been doing stuff.

*Today should have been Farmer's Market Day, but it wasn't.

*I was obsessed with doing stuff and decided that trip would be more stuff than I could handle.

*Fear not.  I went last Saturday.  I got tomatoes.  I made sauce.

*I've done the math and figured out that this sauce rings up at roughly twenty dollars a pint.

*It's not about the money.  It's about making tomatoes into liquid.

*That amuses me beyond all reason...

*So yesterday I found myself in a kind of weird situation.

*I was standing in the middle of my bathroom and covered in Belgian Waffle when I suddenly said to myself...


*I've been thinking about it for a while.

*I'm good at thinking about stuff, but usually not so good with the follow through.

*How I ended up standing in the middle of my empty bathroom with a paint roller in my hand and peachy/brownish paint up to my elbows is something of a mystery.

*I found the receipt for the paint so clearly I purchased it that morning.

*But I refuse to believe that it was I who did such a meticulous job of taping the edges.

*That just doesn't sound like something I would do...

*The paint color is really called Belgian Waffle.

*I'm thinking about getting some Fresh Baked Pumpernickel to do a couple of accent walls.

*I firmly believe that walls should have a high carb content.

*I'm not going to buy any of the paints named after fruits.

*We'll see if I suddenly end up in the middle of a some other room with pumpernickel on my elbows any time in the near future...

*Meanwhile, the bathroom walls look pretty good except for that one spot.

*You know the spot...the one that never seems to come out the same color and you have to go back over it.

*Yeah.  That spot.

*I haven't gone back over it yet.  I'm hoping the magic that is drying paint will somehow even it all out.

*Painting the bathroom walls means everything else looks kinda grungy.

*So I had to scrub some stuff.

*Then I took a nap.

*Then I woke up because my back was so sore I thought I'd suddenly aged forty years over the duration of a forty minute nap.

*On Monday, I finally broke down and went in to school.

*A classroom will not set itself up without teacher assistance no matter how far we've come as a society.

*It was hot.  It was sticky.

*It was infested with hornets.

*Lots and lots of hornets.

*They come in through the spot where they had to board up that window.

*You know...the window.  The one that kids break and that they keep telling you they will fix so you'll stop complaining, but they never do.

*I finished setting up the room over the course of three hours, killed a dozen hornets with my flip flop and headed down to see Mr. Principal.

Ms. Sheep:  Hey, Mr. Principal.  How are you?

Mr. Principal:  Why, hello Ms. Sheep!  I've missed you and your sunny disposition over these dreary summer months.  What delightful news do you bring me today?

MS:  Well, I thought I should give you a heads up.  My room couldn't have any more hornets in it if it were an actual hornets nest.  I've been up there for three hours and now I have to clean my flip flop.

MP:  That is horrible!  We should do something about that!!

MS:  Yeah.  It might be a good idea.  They keep coming in through that boarded up window.  The one with the rain soaked plywood over it.  I haven't gotten around to stuffing it with paper towels yet what with having to set up the whole room and all.

MP:  Paper towels?  In the window?  Ms. Sheep...that is ridiculous!  We should fix that!!

MS:  Well...I may have mentioned that once or twice over the last few years.

*With my luck, the hornets will all hide when the custodians get in there to check it out and they will have taken with them the bodies of their fallen comrades previously littering my office floor.

*Or they will discover that the hornets are coming from somewhere else and I STILL won't have a window in the main classroom area.

*If I am lucky, one of them will sting me and I can fake an allergy or something.  That could be good for a sick day or something...

*My idiot neighbors are working on their car and revving the engine with great gusto.

*There is also a great deal of whooping and chortling involved.

*My back hurts too much to go down there.  I'll just glare at the window periodically and I'm certain they will get the message.  They'll probably feel just horrible about their behavior...

*Do you realize that, this time next week, I will be back to school full time?

*With the kids.

*And the hornets.

*Neither of which really want me around long term.  It's more fun for both kids and hornets when Ms. Sheep isn't there.

*And neither understands that I don't really have a choice in the matter.

*I'd much rather be home covered in Belgian Waffle even if I don't fully understand how I ended up in that condition.

*I was pleasantly surprised by A Dirty Job: A Novel.

*Most of Mr. Moore's stuff is on the edgy side and more than a little irreverent.  Sharp witted and sarcastic but in a good way.

*This one had all that, true.  But it was, dare I say it...sweet.

*Really sweet.  And a little bit sentimental and I couldn't help but genuinely like almost all the characters even if they were representing Death's interests on earth.

*I found Fire Burn And Cauldron Bubble: The Jolie Wilkins Series (Volume 1) hiding in my Nook library last weekend.

*I don't use that account very often and totally forgot the first two books in that series were in there.

*I've already read them, but I like a nice re-read every now and again.

*And, with commuting season almost upon me, I borrowed an audio copy of Moon Called (Mercy Thompson) from the library just to get myself back in the swing of listening to stuff in the car.

*Surprisingly good and adequately read.

*Will probably try to get others in the series at some point.

*Summer is short.  The school year is long.  A girl needs something to pass the time once the Waffle High wears off.

Well, that's about it for me sitting in one spot.  My back doesn't seem to like it and I'm getting the urge to go see if there is anything that needs "touching up" on my waffle-walls.  Besides, no one is really sure how long my internet connection is going to last (the techs at my service provider included) so I suppose I should upload while the uploadin' is good.

Tomorrow I am taking the car in for service but that is all I have on the docket.  For now anyway.  It's the last week of summer vacation.  Who knows what urge will overtake me in these dwindling moments of freedom?

Or if it will come with a side of bacon?


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

WNBP: A Clean Sweep. And Mopping. And Dusting.

Oh this should be a good Wednesday Night Bullet Post.  I am following my usual pattern of summertime insomnia: issues at the start/issues at the end.  If I managed two hours of snooze time last night, I'd be shocked.

First I was too hot.  Then I was too cold.  Then I couldn't stand to be in the bed and had to get up.  This, of course, caught the attention the resident felines and scrambled their simplistic understanding of feeding times.  For the record, just because I get out of bed, this doesn't mean it is time for breakfast.  By the time, I was ready to hit the sack again, they were frisky as all get-out and racing about like graceless dervishes.

This went on for most of the night.  I would imagine my downstairs neighbors are less than thrilled.  I'd feel badly about that, but I am too tired to work up a good care.

I'm just going to head right into this week's bullet points and let them take me where they may.  Apologies in advance for any lack of clarity.  And trust me.  There will be a lack of clarity.  I fail to see how it can go any differently right now.

*I made brownies today.

*I know what you're thinking:  Sheepie!  Brownies on a Wednesday?  That is just wrong on so many levels!!!

*I have been doing a great deal of housecleaning lately.

*And I don't mean "straightening up and a little light dusting."

*I mean "heavy duty cleaning that involves gloves and squirming underneath furniture."

*The whole thing started with the smoke detector.

*A couple of weeks ago, the combination of steam from the bathroom and the already humid weather conditions set off the smoke alarm several times.

*Hint:  It is really a heat detector.  And it really hates my bathroom being right next to it.

*I really hate it, too.  Even more, I hate that my smoke detector is wired into the electrical system.

*It was going off so often on this particular Sunday morning, that I actually ended up flipping the breaker to reset it.

*This was harder than you think since the breaker box is located behind my bedroom door and I've stored quite a bit of stuff in that general and somewhat hidden area over the years.

*Then I got to thinking, "Gosh, what if there was an emergency and they needed to get to the breaker box?  I'd be just mortified if anyone saw my storage area!  I should move all that to the closet where it will be out of the way and invisible to prying eyes trying to locate my breaker box."

*That would have been a good plan save for the fact that I was already storing stuff in the bedroom closet.  And under the bed.  And in every other closet, nook, cranny and corner of the manse.

*I've lived here a long time.  I found myself visiting stuff I haven't seen since I was a young slip of a girl with my whole life ahead of me and lots of shopping to do.

*Apparently, I have shopped quite a a bit over the years.

*We are two weeks into The Great Purge of 2012.  It has sort of been a "one thing leads to another" kind of deal.

*You clean one area and suddenly another looks dingy.  Next thing you know, you are scrubbing down the bathroom walls and wondering exactly when things got so completely out of hand.

*I have removed approximately twenty bags of stuff from this place.

*Big bags.  Contractor sized bags, in some cases.  We can only hope that the condo association spies don't have someone watching the dumpster because I'm not entirely certain I'm supposed to use it for this level of purging...

*I haven't gone to the Farmer's Market for two weeks straight.

*I was going to go today.  Made it as far as the grocery store and that was all I could stand.

*Two hours of sleep is kind of like being intoxicated, sick and stupid all rolled into one.

*That said, two weeks is too long to forgo my regular Visit With The Vegetables so I am going to have to suck it up and go on Saturday.

*I hate going on Saturday.  The other humans are there.  They get in my way and hog all the good tomatoes.

*Early yesterday evening, I heard Christmas music.  Being that this is August, I found that odd.

*Even more disturbing, however, was the fact that it was coming from my own computer.

*The Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty somehow managed to open iTunes with his hindquarters and send out a little holiday cheer.

*This is alarming and could possibly account for the insomnia situation, now that I think of it...

*Yesterday, was my absolute limit regarding my slow Internet speed.  I finally broke down and made the call for assistance.

*Step One:  Explaining a Mac.  And why I am not using any form of Windows.  And how they haven't updated their manuals since Apple put out version 10.8.

*And that my name isn't Kristy.

*A repair ticket was issued and I was assured that it was highly unlikely a home visit would be needed.

*Message on the machine today said a technician would be at my home sometime before 7:00 pm on Thursday.

*Internet is working rather well today.  Quite speedily, actually.  Debating whether I should cancel the tech, but I can't help but believe that the moment I do, the whole system will suddenly implode.

*The realization that a technician was coming to my home forced me to start cleaning the living room.

*I wasn't going to do that.  I was going to wait.

*But the amount of stitch markers and yarn snippets in the general area of the router made me rethink that plan.

*Have we gotten to the point where we forgive me for eating brownies on a Wednesday yet?  I mean, I was crawling around the wires and dust bunnies for over an hour, people!!!

*I have used my library card more in the last couple of weeks than in the past ten years, I think.

*Yay for finally being able to get digital library loans!

*I started reading Perdido Street Station.

*It is very good.  Very, very good.  Exceptional, really.

*But I found it disturbing.  I could see it going to a dark, dark place.

*With the insomnia situation and my new found obsession regarding people judging my storage habits, I decided that this was the wrong time to read that book.

*Returned it with a click of the mouse and checked out The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove instead.

*I read the first book in this series years ago.  That one wasn't available to refresh my memory, but I figured I'd catch up.

*Lighthearted and inappropriate in all the right ways.  A good choice for my sleep deprived brain!

*And, as it was a quick read, I was able to head right into The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror without missing a beat.

*Except for the times when I was crawling around rescuing dpns and cable needles from the dust bunnies, that is...

*I don't love all of Christopher Moore's stuff, but he does have a witty way about him.

*If you are OK with a great deal of irreverence.

*Which I am.

*The Cheerful Teaching Assistant loves Christopher Moore.  She went to Boston to hear him speak last spring.

*I wish we were going to be working together this year so I could tell her I read about the Lust Lizard and the Stupid Angel.  Maybe I can email her...

*God, I'm tired.  And I am itchy and sneezy from all the dust I've battled today.

*And, if I'm being perfectly honest, I really kinda, sorta want another brownie.

That is probably my cue to close this down for the night.  Once you start yawning, itching and craving carbs, there is little hope for further blog sense.  With any luck, I'll be able to convince my brain to power down tonight and the sandman will come for a visit.  I could really use some sleep right about now.  I'd welcome that particular guest with open arms.

If sleep cannot be had, I guess I could invite Mr. Sandman in for a brownie and show him my very organized storage areas.  That could be fun, too...


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

WNBP: Recovering, Discovering And Cash Lay Out

Hello, Wednesday!  It is so very nice to see you.  I don't suppose you might bring with you some decent prime time viewing this week, would you?  No?  That's OK.  I wasn't really expecting it.  I'll just continue to entertain myself with ongoing errands and back to school nonsense while you carry on with the last of the lame summer programming.

I'll manage.  If nothing else, the Wednesday Night Bullet Post will kill a little time.  Further, it will allow me to process all that has occurred since last I meandered over to this blog...

*Today was Family Lunch Day.

*I like Family Lunch Day.  I get to visit with family and Mommy Sheep buys my lunch.

*This will be my last FLD for a while given that the state has decided I should go back to educating its children next month and the lunch thing generally occurs whilst I am laboring away in the salt mines.

*Another reason to curse the end of summer vacation...

*Looking forward to this year's ever-so-slight pay raise, though.

*It is the time of year when I suddenly discover just how much I've enjoyed summer vacation and how many August financial obligations I've managed to forget while I was doing it.

*Tuesday brought the annual Visit With The Cat Whisperer.

*Last year we didn't see TCW.  We saw another vet.

*She was not popular with Da Boyz.

*TCW is kind of an odd duck, but I bend to public opinion under certain circumstances.

*Da Boyz love TCW.  Deeply.  Passionately.  Embarrassingly so.

*First on the table was the Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty.

*Who, I am pleased to announce, is now the Appropriately Gi-normous Kitty.

*Low carb has agreed with him.  As has his brother's tendency to snitch his food from time to time...

*He also rocked his rabies vaccine.  I didn't even realize he'd had it, so calmly was it handled.

*Claw clipping, on the other hand, was less than delightful, but better than last year.

*No mask was used upon his tender snout and, unlike last year, TCW was able to clip all his claws as opposed to the three that we snagged in the previous visit.

*On the negative side we count his disgustingly lovey-dovey behavior towards the vet which involved chirping, cooing and nuzzling.  Not at all manly.

*Worse, his teeth have reached critical mass and cleaning is imperative.  They are in the "severe" stage of gingivitis.

*Frankly, I think he did it on purpose so he could go back for a visit.

*Next up, was the Very Complicated Kitty.

*Still fat.

*Probably still needs his anti-anxiety meds.

*Just waiting on the blood work to see if he can tolerate it.

*Speaking of blood work, are you familiar with the term, "Oh no, we just blew a vein?"

*It was no one's fault.  I was watching and, even to my eye, it was a good needle stick.  Some veins just prefer to leak as opposed to obediently gush from the needle into the designated container.

*The VCK handled it well, but there was flinching.  Flinching isn't good under these circumstances.

*Kitties who flinch end up in The Bag.

*With their little shaved leg sticking out.

*Worse, someone decided that The Bag should come in festive red and green so now you've got the world's most miserable Christmas present rolling around on the examination table.

*The Cat Whisperer was more heartbroken about the whole thing than he was but it had to be done lest I take home not only my cat but part of a hypodermic needle.

*He let her kiss him on the head when it was over so I think he understood...

*While all this was going on the AGK alternated from leaping happily onto the counter to nuzzle the struggling vet and opening the cabinets in search of cleaning supplies.

*I spent more at the vet yesterday than I will at my own doctor's appointment next week.

*I have a cleaning scheduled with my dentist the same week as the AGK gets his.

*Again, I shall undoubtedly spend more on his oral hygiene than mine own.

*I didn't go to the Farmer's Market today.  I had the lunch thing coming up and was cleaning my bedroom.

*Plus it was raining and I was feeling fragile.

*Over the past few years, my bedroom has become less a place of a repose and more of a repository.

*As much as I might have liked being the sole curator of the Fashion From The Eighties To Present exhibit, the pay wasn't enough to justify continuing.

*Seriously, there were clothes in the back of the closet that couldn't even be donated.  It would be a cruel jest to clothe the needy in my neon green 80's leggings.

*The needy would probably hunt me down and strangle me with my own Madonna-style lace gloves.

*Then they would finish the job by pummeling me with my burnt out crimping iron and I doubt a single soul would step in to assist considering that I actually owned a crimping iron and was willing to let others know about it.

*Obtaining a digital reading device has done wonders for decreasing the clutter around here.

*But I missed being able to use the library.

*It's been several years and more than a few local budget crises, but my teeny tiny local library finally managed to finalize membership with the state library.

*And that means....

*Free digital loans!!!

*The upside, of course, is the free access to books, both audio and wordy.

*The downside is limited availability since, apparently, others are also allowed to use this service.  Not just me.

*"Digital" doesn't mean "unlimited."  There are licenses and whatnot to consider.  Wait lists still apply for popular titles.

*That said, I've managed to do pretty well for myself over the last week.

*I listened to Damned over the weekend.

*And finished the audio version of House of Dark Shadows (Dreamhouse Kings) whilst in the car today.

*I also checked out a copy of Reaper Man for some actual reading of words on digital paper.

*The required app works beautifully on my iPad and Adobe Digital Editions lets me read it on my simple, but much beloved Kobo ereader.  

*Happy Sheepie.

*Although Sheepie can't help but wonder why this marvel couldn't have come unto her back in June when she had the whole summer ahead of her for reading.

*OTOH, I do most of my audio book enjoying during the school year when the forty minute commute requires entertainment.

*The prospect of spending less on said entertainment this school year might even take a little of the sting out of September...

*And, with the vehicle repair bill coming up fast on the heels of the vet extravaganza, I think it will be all to the good.

There's another week summed up.  The cats have recovered nicely from yesterday's adventure and appear to have forgiven me for the bad parts.  (They never blame The Cat Whisperer.  No matter how bad it gets, she's always the good guy in this situation)  With a free lunch in my belly and free books on my digital devices, I think I'm in good shape here.

And who knows?  Maybe August will be extended this year and lacy Madonna gloves will make a comeback...


Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Frantically Not Finishing, Orange Nails And Squash

Boy, these Wednesdays surely do sneak up on me!  Even on a day when I know perfectly well that it is midweek, I still find myself leaping off the couch in a panic when I realize that it is past time to compose another Wednesday Night Bullet Post.

I suppose it's the whole "end of summer" thing that is making me feel like each day is one of the last during which I can do anything of any real import.  It is also the time when I realize that I haven't done half the stuff I swore I was going to accomplish during the endless days of summer.  I tend to get a little frantic.  I try to cram as many projects as humanly possible into the day and, before I know it, night has fallen.  I tumble into bed, exhausted from not really finishing anything because I need to get my rest if I am going to get up tomorrow and not do it all over again.

The WNBP sometimes gets lost in the shuffle...

However, I somehow managed to remember it and I don't want to waste any more time with flustered excuses.  You never know when the urge to re-tile the bathroom will suddenly overcome me and posting will, once again, be forgotten.

*Niece Sheep has promised us a baby soon.

*She is doing her best but, as I understand it, the infant needs to be on board with the whole thing as well.

*Great Niece Sheep is not going to be an easy child, I fear.  I look forward to seeing how things work out in her teen years given her lack of cooperation thus far.

*In my day, contractions and whatnot meant childbirth.  There was none of this "oh, I'll be there when I get there and you can't do anything about it" nonsense.

*Kids today...

*Nothing to do but wait.

*And no.  I still haven't finished that baby blanket.

*Don't judge.  I've decided it is a Christmas gift.

*In fact, I have decided that this is what it was going to be all along so everything is just fine here, thank you very much.

*I painted my nails a vivid shade of orange today.

*Internet was down.

*Stuff happens when the Internet is down.  Sometimes it is the total breakdown of society.

*Other times it is orange fingernails.

*My iPad is so used to the missing wifi that it has started automatically defaulting to the neighbor's signal.

*This does not bode well for my continued subscription to this particular service.

*There was a bit of a heat 'n humidity situation at the end of last week.

*In my current state of August related panic, I saw this as the ideal opportunity to put up six quarts of beef stew.

*I know.  I need help.  The professional kind that requires insurance.

*According to every social media outlet ever invented there seems to be a great deal of distress over NBC's coverage of the Olympics.

*I think I can help with that.  Just repeat after me:

*It's sports.  Who cares?

*I haven't seen a single second of the Olympics and I am not the least bit distressed over delayed broadcasts.

*Somehow, I doubt that is going to really soothe anyone, but I figured it was worth a shot.

*You know, my orange fingernails look quite funky-fresh against the keyboard...

*There were the cutest little patty pan squash at the farmers market today.

*I bought a couple, unable to resist their pie-like shape.

*For dinner tonight, I layered slices of fresh, mild onions and squash in a baking dish, dotted it with butter and sprinkled it with fresh basil.

*Before baking, I sprinkled it with just the barest hint of Parmesan cheese so as not to overwhelm the delicate flavor of this summer delight.

*It came out of the oven looking beautiful.  I admired it for a full minute.

*Then I ate it slathered in ketchup because, in the end, squash is just a damned vegetable and needs all the help it can get.

*I think I was kind of irritated because, in spite of its shape, patty pan squash is not at all like pie.

*I don't have any pie, nor did I want pie until the whole squash thing.

*I downloaded my copy of Odd Apocalypse: An Odd Thomas Novel over the weekend.

*And finished it yesterday.

*The last few books in this series don't have quite the emotional impact that the first three did but this was still one of the best books I've read in a long time.

*And there is this one moment, right towards the end, that is everything Odd Thomas is about.

*I sat up and cried, "YES! This is awesome!!  Do it!"

*Then fell back and moaned, "No, no, no!  You mustn't!!!"

*A mere sentence later, I squealed, "'d be an idiot to not go for it, Oddie!"

*I had barely passed the punctuation mark before admonishing, "Some things are just know that.  If you do this, you will regret it for the rest of your life and then some, given the nature of your interesting existence."

*A fantastic moment for followers of this series.  Just fantastic.

*My only complaint is that the book had to end and that I was stupid enough to read it so quickly.

*I've been eyeing A Madness of Angels for a while now.  Along with lots of other titles, though.

*Since I paid full price for the new release of Odd Thomas, I decided that this less expensive digital book would be a more responsible thing to purchase.

*I've not gotten too far so I can't really pass judgement yet, but it seems pretty good.

*Kind of hard to follow, but that may due to my having gotten so used to the rhythm of the Odd Thomas' narration.

*I'll keep you posted...

As enamored as I am with the sight of my orange fingertips typing merrily away, I am starting to find this chair a bit uncomfortable.  Besides, the resident felines have begun their Dinner Time Chorus and I probably also should go see if there is a baby related text somewhere on my new phone.  This is as good a spot as any to wrap this thing up, I think.

Besides, that bathroom isn't going to re-tile itself before tomorrow morning, now is it?  And I suddenly have the urge to bake a pie...


Wednesday, August 01, 2012

WNBP: Where Did August Come From???

I honestly don't know how we got here.  One minute, I was merrily going about my summer vacation and the next...AUGUST!!!

I am always a little sad when August rolls around.  It is still summer and there is certainly ample vacation time left unto me, but the clock is ticking.  I have to adjust my whole mindset.  It isn't as if I just stroll back into the classroom come September 1st and begin teaching with gusto.  Teaching, with or without gusto, requires a great deal of planning.  Everything I do from this point forward is going to be tinged with a hint of education and I can't understand how it got to be that way so fast.

Whatever happened to July, I ask you?  Shouldn't there have been a whole month between "Yay, I'm done with this working business" and "Where did I put my respectable shoes?"

Meh.  There isn't anything to be done about it.  August is here and I might as well get used to it.  It probably won't last any longer than stupid July did, anyway.

Let's celebrate the first Wednesday night of the month with a bullet point post and pretend that time isn't moving at something like warp speed...

*Yesterday, I bought a new case for my new phone.

*Cost more than the actual phone.

*There is a lesson in there somewhere, but I am too tired to look for it now.

*Also bought an external battery because I have a little issue with remembering to charge my cell phone.

*It is a disability, I think.  But it isn't covered by any sort of insurance I have unearthed.

*Now as long as I remember to charge the external battery, everything will be hunky dory!!!

*There were eggplants at the Farmers Market today.


*Visions of fried eggplant virtually danced in my head and, before I knew it, several of the purple buggers were in the car with me.

*The World's Greatest Stylist And Life Coach called to see if I wanted to "do something" today.

*I think it is good to periodically put on mascara and wear something other than yoga pants so I said, "yes."

*We went shopping and had Chinese food.

*For the record, going to Chinese food restaurants with TWGSALC is interesting.  She speaks Chinese.

*I do not speak Chinese.

*While I do not believe that people of a certain ethnicity always know others of their same background within their geographical area, it certainly does seem that TWGSALC knows a lot of Chinese people.

*I have no idea what anyone is talking about when we go out for lunch, but I enjoy myself all the same.

*We get extra hot and sour soup which is also really good.

*Note: TWGSALC is very careful to switch to English as quickly as possible when I am around.  She says it is the polite thing to do

*I did not make fried eggplant for dinner tonight.  I am still stuffed full of soup and chicken and pork and broccoli and cabbage.

*I don't think that piling eggplant on top of that, fried or otherwise, would be beneficial to the environment.

*I vowed to not spend any money today, what with having shopped yesterday.

*When we entered Ye Olde Girly-Girly Bath Shoppe Of Frou-Frou things, I honestly thought I was safe.

*But I left with thirty two dollars worth of lip balm and assorted fragrant things so obviously there was a chink in my armor...

*Query: Does anyone else think it is weird that the Very Complicated Kitty jumped up on the counter yesterday, picked apart my sandwich (that I only left for a second) in order that he might abscond with....a tomato slice?


*I could see if he wanted meat.  Or the bun.  Heck, even the cheese might make some sense.

*But...a tomato?

*I shooed him from the kitchen, picked the mangled slice up from the floor and resolved to guard my lunch more carefully from this point forward.

*For the record, however, I do not feel like tomatoes are things that require protection from cats.

*I've hidden the eggplant.

*And I worry about what is going to happen once August is done and I'm not here to personally watch over the produce.

*I don't love everything that Dean Koontz puts out there, but the Odd Thomas series is a definite favorite.

*You can imagine my joy at learning he has a new one coming out this month.

*Something to make August worthwhile...

*I figured I'd break down and read the serialized novella he put out a while ago to celebrate.

*I generally find serialized novellas kind of irritating, but what are you gonna do?

*Odd Interlude #1 (An Odd Thomas Story) is, I believe, available through download only.

*Worth it if you happen to have an ereader. And now you can get the whole thing instead of having to wait for another installment to be published.

*The Odd Thomas series plays fast and loose with the rules of good storytelling.  The author breaks the third wall and directly addresses the reader.  He reveals some of the underpinnings of the story and almost guarantees you won't be surprised by anything.

*But you are surprised and not always pleasantly so, at least in the long form novels.  Every single character is engaging beyond belief and you can't help but hope things are going to work out for them.

*And, when they do, you cheer.

*Koontz writes dialogue better than almost any author I've ever read.  Witty, sharp and quick.

*Since the new book won't be out for a bit, I figured I'd give The Hunter (The Legend Chronicles) a shot.

*A bit of a Steampunk change-up.  Generally, these sorts of stories take place in more urban areas and you can almost always count on everyone having a British accent.

*This one takes place in the old west and, thus far, I've only noted one Brit.  Kind of a nice change of pace and who doesn't love a clockwork horse?

*The downside is that it is a little bit too much with the lovey-dovey stuff.  

*I get it.  Emotionally stunted demon hunter falls for the succubus with a heart of gold.

*Now show me some zombies, dang it all!!!

*Or at least make the horse run around with steam coming out of its nose once or twice.

*That said, it is a nice little story with some cool steampunk elements.  

*Also a cheap download which is good since I spent all that money at the frou-frou store and don't see a raise in pay until September rolls around.

*No extra money in August, I fear.  And there is a vet appointment coming up.

*I'll probably have to spend the rest of this month dragging the VCK to nutritionists and therapists in order to deal with his tomato obsession.

*Which will, undoubtedly make the month seem longer, but not in a good way at all.

So that should cover things for now.  I must now head off to enjoy what is left of this Wednesday and prepare myself for Thursday.  That will be the 2nd of August.  Which precedes the 3rd.  And so on and so on...

How did it get here so fast???