Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Pandemic Hoarding

Wednesday, April 8th, 2020

Yes, I bought a case of these. You buy 50 cases of tp (or maybe you don’t) and I buy… Sesmark rice thins, original flavor thank you very much. We go through these things and we were out last weekend and I couldn’t find them at any pop-the-trunk or delivery stores and I wasn’t gonna go inside a big store for rice thins🐽 That’s okay. I looked online. Amazon does not have Clorox wipes but they do have Sesmark rice thins. In a case of 12 pkg. Okay, I will buy a case. We WILL use them eventually and they are individual packages so they won’t go stale. I’m not even sure why we buy these. They’re kind of dry and flavorless and Triscuits are better as crackers go. But they go well with some of our other Pandemic Snacks so…

I actually bought these for the GG (even though I also eat them). I thought he would get a kick out of unboxing a case of rice thins. And he did. But I did not let him open them until he PROMISED me he would wash his hands immediately afterward. I meant Happy Birthday Style, not Man Style. And that’s as far as we’ll go with that because TMI.

Speaking of Clorox wipes. I have two mostly full containers and I am rationing them to like 2-3 wipes a day. Front door knobs mainly. Er, except when “someone” absconds with them to clean “tools” in the back yard. No no no no! Use scrubbing bubbles or plain dish detergent or something. It’s doubtful that anything in our back yard is virus infected. I find myself checking Amazon for Clorox wipes nearly every day ANYWAY, mainly as an exercise in curiosity. For weeks, they were totally unavailable. Now they are showing up in 6-packs and other weird form factors but they are “prioritized” for hospitals, etc. That’s okay with me and I haven’t tried to pass myself off as a hospital in order to try to buy them.

It was a pretty calm day here in Telecubelandia. I facetimed with MMCB1 this morning after which I watched a weird little scene unfold in front of the Landfill as I attended work meetings. A car pulled up and a woman got out (with the car still running) and smoked a cigarette. She leaned in the open passenger window once to (I think) talk to a child strapped in the back seat. Finished her cig and drove off. I wonder if she had any clue she was being watched. I guess I am turning into Luke of Perrynet across the street who sees EVERYTHING 🐽.

I knocked off a little early today because it is 70 degrees and I wanted to sit in the back yard in the sun for a bit. It’s April and this is Michigan and it ain’t gonna stay this warm for long.

I’m not going north

Tuesday, April 7th, 2020

This is meeeee at six years old. I am on “my” beach wearing beloved clothing The Commander made for me and my dad’s buddy Pete Sherman took this photooo.

I put this on facebook last night:

I’m not going north . Although I have lived and worked “down south” on the Planet Ann Arbor my entire adult life and raised my children here, I grew up in Sault Ste. Siberia and my family has owned shorefront property and cabins there for almost 100 years. I spent EVERY day of EVERY summer there as a kid, moving out to the cabin the day after school got out and returning to town on Labor Day. As an adult I haven’t ever been able to spend the whole summer there but there isn’t one single summer I haven’t spent a few weeks there plus multiple weekends. I wanted my daughters/nieces to have the family beach experience and they love it as much as I do. Maybe things will change before summer but for now I am prepared for the possibility that I may not be able to go there this summer. This will be the first time ever. I am not upset about this. It is what it is. A yooperland facebook friend reminded me that War Memorial Hospital has SIX ICU beds. I have visited elderly relatives in that ICU and although I didn’t count the beds, I remember well how small it is and maybe not well prepared for the coronavirus. Stay home if you possibly can wherever you are. I can and I will.🧡🧡🧡

I got a lot of comments and “likes” for my statement that I would not be traveling to the yooperland for whatever the duration of COVID19 turns out to be. Please please please do not travel to the yooperland unless you have a NEGATIVE test for COVID. If you can get a test… Just try. I have been thinking since the beginning of this whole thing that the virus is being spread by asymptomatic carriers. That’s how successful viruses spread. Stay home. Don’t go north. You can’t escape the virus by going north. It is everywhere. If you have severe symptoms, the hospitals in the northland may not be able to accommodate you. STAY HOME!

Please follow handwashing and social distancing rules. Love y’all. KW (Beautiful lightning and thunder here on the Planet Ann Arbor!)

Hydroxychloroquine Blues

Monday, April 6th, 2020

Since I am apparently not allowed to express my opinions out loud these days even in my own house, I am going to use my own little platform to say what I was trying to say yesterday when I was “overruled” by a mansplainer who wouldn’t shaddup long enough for me to even attempt to state my position.

A disclaimer: I am NOT good at debating. I am shy in general and often struggle to “think on my feet” when engaged in a face-to-face debate. I get upset, my brain shuts down, and angry gibberish spews out.

There’s a lot of talk floating around about how hydroxychloroquine could be a “miracle” drug for That Virus. I don’t know if that’s true or not. I suspect very much not but I will also freely admit that I do not know anything about hydroxychloroquine. But neither does the Orange Baboon for all the crowing he is doing about it.

A while back a news story was making the rounds that a couple heard about hydroxychloroquine from one of Trump’s TV coronavirus briefings campaign rallies. They *apparently* believed their wonderful president and dosed themselves with some kind of aquarium chemical. The man died.

The accusation leveled at me was that I think Trump was responsible for this death. THAT IS NOT WHAT I THINK! Of *course* Trump cannot be held responsible for that death. What I DOOOOO think is that:

1) Trump says (often loudly) anything he pleases, true or not, whether he understands it or not. And name-calls (we’ve talked about this before) or shuts down anyone who contradicts him.

2) Trump has somehow managed to attract a cult (yes, I’m gonna use that word) of followers who seem incapable of sorting out his constant stream of Word Vomit from facts and data.

So when Trump started throwing the hydroxychloroquine word around with wild abandon, NOOOOO he did not deliberately try to entice his “base” into ingesting aquarium chemicals. BUT. People who are often, well, “not all there”, do listen to him because they idolize him. It sure would be nice if he would use his position of power to disseminate ACCURATE INFORMATION, deferring to ACTUAL EXPERTS if he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. And it is my opinion that he doesn’t give a load of crap about what anybody else thinks, whatever their credentials are.

All that said. I just read a story about our own Henry Ford Hospital beginning a STUDY to see if hydroxychloroquine is effective as a preventative for the disease. I can get behind this idea. Taking a bad orange man’s (I’m owning that label youse guyz) ranting and raving as the gospel truth without evaluating it, I cannot.

Man I am getting tired of typing hydroxychloroquine. I wonder how many times I misspelled it!

Aside from disease news, I am noticing a small but somewhat heartening polly-tickle trend on my facebook feed. People are kicking back at some of my more rabid conservative Trump-backing “friends”. And I have even seen comments from people who were Trump supporters in 2016 saying they are DONE with Trump. Keep it up folks. Dump Trump. Bad orange man. We can do better.

ParkP and peepers

Sunday, April 5th, 2020

No I am not gonna parkP here. We were parked with the Lyme Lounge at Pinckney State Rec and the [randomly] considerate GG was suggesting that I should parkP in this little “woods” or whatever you want to call it. Er, not that I had any particular *need* to parkP. I could easily wait until we got home.

As you can see, there are a few trees here. What you may also be able to see is the cars in the parking log lot on the other side of this little hill. And then, in the second pic we are looking to the left and just ahead of us in the parking lot is a whole bunch of cars and a guy standing outside one of them in easy view of proposed parkP. So, big parking lots on either side of a little wooded hill. No thank you. I would have to lift my long skirt and pull my tights, etc., down. I am a life-long woodsP-er but nope.

Also in the second pic, you can see a red porta potty down by the “beach”. I can’t believe the porta potty is actually OPEN. I didn’t check though. There is NO WAY you would get me anywhere near one of those these days! I wouldn’t even use a regular public bathroom as if any of THOSE were open. Last Sunday when we were down at Lake Erie, I had to tell the GG that TWICE! NOPE!

So another beautiful afternoon session of reading, snacking and sipping liquid courage in the Lyme Lounge. Our preferred pandemic snacks seem to be peppered salami and crackers (Triscuit today) with cranberry goat cheese, which I think we are out of and comes from Aldi believe it or not so I may have to get creative about trying to obtain some because we are NOT going to Aldi unless we can do curbside and that is highly unlikely.

I didn’t see anyone else out at Pinckney with a camping trailer but there were a few other families who were sitting outside next to their automotive vee-hickles doing probably the same thing we were. I didn’t get close enough to check out their choices of pandemic snacks or liquid courage.

Came home to a delivery from Argus Farm Stop. In learning to use their app, I forgot to set up a tip so I put a five-dollar bill in a baggie and taped it to the door with a post-it note “Argus tip”. Potatoes, two kinds of fresh ravioli (mushroom and butternut squash), Roos Roast Lobster Butter Love coffee, tortillas, maple syrup (cannot believe we don’t have some Besteman’s but we don’t). All locally sourced.

Last but not least, spring peepers were a-peepin’ like crazy out at Pinckney. Time hurries on.

Re-learning to drive in a pandemic

Saturday, April 4th, 2020

I have been cooped up a LOT these days and I think the last time I actually drove an automotive vee-hickle was maybe a week ago or so. I mean, I usually drive my Ninja over to Cubelandia every day. It’s a zen drive of sorts. Today I was driving around our largely deserted city and I was kinda slow driving and paying extra attention to how I was shifting because the Ninja has a stick shift.

This is kinda funny because a high school friend on facebook has posted a meme about “what was your first car”. Well… She was a “rich kid” and her first car was a brand new Plymouth Duster that her dad bought her. I didn’t answer the meme because I don’t answer memes. My first couple o’ cars were my parents 1966(?) Pontiac Tempest and my grandparents’ (1965?) Ford Fairline. Both of those vee-hickles had automatic transmissions but I learned to drive stick via my family’s VW Bug. My FB friend says over and over that she could never learn to drive a stick. I am here to tell you that not only did I learn to drive a stick as a kid, I am STILL driving a frickin’ stick. Grrr. 2008 Honda Civic SI, 6-speed manual. Perfect vee-hickle for pandemic grocery pickup with its pop the trunk functionality.

We had a great time facetiming with our daughters and a niece tonight, along with a couple of beloved significant others. We are all well but it it is so hard to say good-bye and hang up from FaceTime.

Macho Man

Friday, April 3rd, 2020

When I first heard the GG aka Macho Man TALKING to someone in the Landfill backyard, I was in the bathroom. I opened up the window and peered outside and saw him talking to the neighbor. I yelled something like, “is there a kayak paddle between you two?” Then I shut the window because I didn’t want anyone to hear me P and flush Eco Terlet.

There kinda was a kayak paddle between them and I knew they were being as careful as they could be. I was still nervous. I don’t think the 6-foot kayak paddle rule is necessarily a scientific measure. But I was at the end of my work day so I grabbed a little bit of whine and sat (more than a kayak paddle away from either of them) and we had fun talking for a while until it was time for us to get porterized online.

In between telecommuting today, I gathered groceries. I made a big order with Sparrow Market. Lotsa meat (their specialty) and a few other things. I sent The Pensioner down to pick it up. Then I navigated the Argus Farm Stop website to set up an account and ordered some produce and other stuff to be DELIVERED on Sunday. It’s a little early for spring produce around here but they have lettuce and other winter veg and an amazing number of other things like coffee, cheese, fresh ravioli, baked goods and I fergit what else. Argus stocks products that local farmers normally sell at the farmers market, which is closed now. I prob’ly wrote about this before but it bears mentioning again.

So the GG grilled a chitchen today and we got porterized via facetime and I think we have another facetime thing going on tomorrow afternoon with some family folks.

Love y’all, KW

Boy Toyz

Thursday, April 2nd, 2020

So the GG did a bunch of stuff outside and then got Mooon Yooonit all loaded up with the purple kayak. What surprised me was that when he drove outta the Landfill driveway, he was also towing the Lyme Lounge. Say what?

Every morning I get home from my 0-skunk-30 and I am warm until I am not. So as I do my morning internet rounds, I snuggle inside my blue buffalo plaid blanket on the Green Couch. It got warm today on The Planet Ann Arbor today and I ended the afternoon sitting in the back yard soaking up some beautiful sunshine. I needed that.

Because I telecommute somewhat frequently *anyway*, I sorta know who will be walking by on a regular basis. Now that *most* people are telecommuting (or laid off, sigh), I see people (and dogz) I have never seen before.

So umpteen gazillion years ago I met the GG on a rafting trip to the Youghiogheny River in Pennsylvania. He was cooking a can on a little stove. After the trip I told my cousin (who was also on the trip) something like “Um, I think the GG, uh, like, *likes* me.” She worked with the GG and she sat back a bit, telling me that he would always talk about all the cute girls he liked all the time. I let that slide but I knew that he DID like *like* me and here we are all these bazillion years later.

The GG will probably “kill” me for posting the last paragraph!

Should I dial 911?

Wednesday, April 1st, 2020

Or maybe just launch kryptonite at them. I think I have some of the red sort hanging around… (Click and click again to embiggen)

I mean, what the heck? I saw these customers walk by on their way TO the schoolyard earlier and didn’t get a pic at the time. It is HIGHLY UNLIKELY that these basketball jones guys are brothers because their skin colors are all over the map. I mean MAAAAYBE they are living in the same household but I doubt it. Telecommuting from the Green Couch, I see EVERYONE walk by. Everyone else is pretty obviously a couple or a parent with kids or a runner or dog-walker. Not these characters.

I was kinda wanting to get a pic of the basketball kids when they came back by but my work day FINALLY ended and I was standing back at the compost bin mesmerized by a little white dog running fast laps around the trail in the woods. Until I realized that I was hearing a basketball bounce BEHIND me, which means the STREET, not the SCHOOLYARD. So I ran like hell out to the street to get a pic and this is the best I could do.

Earlier in the day there was discussion on Next Door Neighbor about what to do when encountering groups of [apparently] unrelated people congregating in public. In that discussion it was lawn workers, who are NOT deemed “essential” unless they are “farming”. The lawn workers in question were apparently blowing leaves. That’s [probably] not related to “farming”, at least not in our suburban-style neighborhood. Lots of discussion I won’t try to repeat. People apparently have a lot of time to study all the new “rules” while I am talking to India and today Ivan. I have never met Ivan except online but I 🧡 him (in a work kinda way). This go-’round, he was installing JAWS on my laptop and it was a PITA and he is likely not paid anywhere near what he’s worth, plus he’s based in NYC. I’m sure he is telecommuting and staying safe and I hope, well, you know.

Some people were saying you could call 9-1-1 to report gatherings of this sort. I’m not sure that’s true and I have mixed feelings about it too (and I didn’t call). Like, I wonder if the po-leese are happy about responding to umpteen bazillion calls to break up public gatherings of unrelated people on top of all the other things they have to do. And I’m not convinced that going to a grocery store is not gathering, even with the 6-foot rule and other protections.

On the other hand, what are these kiddos thinking? And their parents, who may or may not be supervising them and in normal times I would think, who am I to judge? But… Maybe moom is working the afternoon shift at The COVID Citadel or is a Grocery Worker. In normal times, these kids are old enough to be supervising themselves and I usually love teenagers bouncing basketballs up my street to the schoolyard as a wonderful sign of spring. But they think they are invulnerable, like we all thought when we were young. They [may] not be and I hope granny and bumpa end up okay.

Yes it’s okay to eat the dern lettuce

Tuesday, March 31st, 2020

Again and again and again and again, shop local if you can.

This morning at our stand-up meeting people were lamenting how hard it is to get a pick-up or delivery at any of our big grocery stores here on The Planet Ann Arbor. Yes. Yes it is. I have also tried. Someone said something like “try at midnight, that’s when they reset everything”. Er, nope.

I thought about this throughout the meeting and when it was finished and Amazon Woman asked if anyone had anything else, I ventured to say I had something totally off-topic, from work at least. And so I told my work friends about my curb-side service down at the specialty market at Kerrytown, where I ordered a bunch of stuff, paid online, and within an hour I pulled up, popped my trunk and I was done done done. One person asked if they had milk. Well, yes. They have everything except toilet paper. But they don’t EVER carry that, so… In the end I said I was finished with my commercial and the one sometimes difficult (but beloved) person I work with said, “That was a GREAT commercial!” I felt like I had won an award! Not all of these people live on The Planet Ann Arbor but I bet there are other small groceries throughout the southeast Great Lake State that have been able to tweak their business model to do curbside. I encouraged my work folks to look for those businesses in their own areas and keep them alive until all of this shitty crapola is over…

In that vein, a rumor was going around that someone had set up a go-fund-me for our own fave Monahan’s Seafood. Say what? We can see the light at the end of the quick and easy protein tunnel around here so I got on the phone and ordered a whole buncha fish from Monahan’s and sent the GG down for curbside pickup. Two pounds each of rainbow trout, whitefish, salmon, swordfish scallopini, and a pound of peppered smoked mackerel especially for the GG. I dunno what I even paid for all of that stuff and I don’t care. Monahan’s has been around FOREVER and it MUST stay alive.

Appalachia on my mind

Monday, March 30th, 2020

I spent my day avoiding news which was helped by work because climbing out of a fintech rabbit hole is always a good way to avoid news. So this is a book blahg.

When picking out books, I *mostly* sort of careen/career along, ping-ponging all over the place. Occasionally I will read a trilogy of books one after another or I will do a few books in a mini-theme. Last year two of my mini-themes were abortion and cults (all fiction). And I followed up the very scientific “The Martian” by re-reading Ray Bradbury’s gorgeous and completely *un*-scientific “Martian Chronicles”.

Starting in December I have been floating off and on through books related to Appalachia. First off I stumbled upon Christy, a book I read a billion years ago about an early 20th century young woman who moves from the relative metropolis of Asheville, NC to teach in an isolated community in the Smoky Mountains. The book is fiction but based on the true story of the author’s mother’s life.

The next two are “book woman” books. “The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek” and “The Giver of Stars”. These are stories about women who join the Pack Horse Library Project. These books were quite similar because in each an independent-minded woman defies current cultural norms to work for a living, delivering books by horse or mule along often dangerous trails to people who are not necessarily interested in book-larnin’ – to put it mildly.

I enjoyed both of these books a lot but I give the edge to the Troublesome Creek book. I thought the characters were a little more interestingly depicted or whatever. Also, a sub-plot involved the blue people of Kentucky. The protagonist was “blue” (it’s a usually benign genetic disorder) and I was VERY intrigued by it plus I loved the protagonist.

And now (as I said yesterday), I’m re-reading “The Dollmaker”. We get a sense of this wonderfully talented woman/artist in her beloved life in a hollow in Kentucky. Indoor spaces are small but the outdoors is wide and beautiful and she farms and takes care of aminals (and whittles). And then, abruptly, she has to learn to adapt to a new life in hastily built housing for war workers near Detroit. Crappy little spaces with thin walls to hold large families. Our protagonist sorely misses her life in Kentucky, where she was poor but able to provide for her family via farming and careful saving but. NEVERTHELESS, SHE PERSISTS! At least she is persisting for now. I can’t remember how the book ends…

And when that trailer gets a-rockin’

Sunday, March 29th, 2020

Man oh man, were we rocking around in the Lyme Lounge this afternoon. And do NOT getcher mind in the gutter. Nothing exciting was going on INSIDE our trailer except for reading, “day-drinking”, and crafting (mainly the GG making knots). We were rocking because we were parked in a big, mostly empty parking lot in an urban state park on the shore of Lake Erie and the wind was blowing a gale.

When we first parked, I wasn’t sure I would like all of the rocking around but in a weird kind of way it turned out to help with the low-level anxiety issues I’ve been dealing with (as we all have!). Lake Erie ain’t Gitchee Gumee. For one thing, the Monroe nuclear power plant is visible just to the south of this state park. But I’ll take it.

I had a minor kerfuffle at the end of our trip involving the first Instacart order I’ve ever made. I’ll talk about that some other day. It worked out very well and those people need to be PAID MORE and I think when (if?) we ever get out onto the other side of this shitola, I may start using grocery delivery services more frequently, at least for things I don’t want to pick out myself. I WILL TIP WELL!

Sooo… KW… What are you reading? I have read a wide variety of books since the new year and I have read some very good ones. The book I am reading right now is “The Dollmaker” by Harriet Arnow. It’s about a woman from Kentucky who moves her family to the Detroit area during WWII. Her husband has been “drafted” to work in a factory near Willow Run (we drove past that area today on the freeway) and they go to join him. I read this book many years ago and loved it. It flew by somewhere on social media last week and I thought, “I NEED TO READ THAT BOOK AGAIN!” And so I am. And I am LOVING IT!

I’ve somehow gotten onto a jag of reading books with characters in and/or from Kentucky this year and someday I might try to coherently blahg about that.

“Day drinking?” A wee slow sipping of beer and whine. We were not sitting out there getting rip-roaring drunk.

Food gatherer

Saturday, March 28th, 2020

I was accused of being a “slug” today. Ohhh noooo noooo noooo noooo! I did NOT get up quiiiite as early as usual (more on that later) but when I did get up, I did NOT slug! I was up and engaged in food gathering! It may have been a Couch Potato version of food gathering but still.

So, in the last couple weeks, I have managed to schedule ONE successful curbside grocery pickup. That was at Kroger. It was a week ago and I had to schedule it three days ahead of time and they were out of a couple things on my list. The next time I tried to schedule a pickup, there were NO times available at all. I now have accounts with Instacart and Shipt. I have a small scheduled delivery from Instacart tomorrow to test it out but can’t seem to get any traction with Shipt. I do not fault these services or even the grocery stores they are associated with. I tend to shop small but I also love the large grocery stores and I think they were blindsided by panic buying and are not able to “turn on a dime” so to speak, to re-orient their business models.

Not the same thing for some of my fave small businesses. Several of them have, in the last few days, “turned on a dime” and, while they are still open for in-store shopping, they are now doing CURBSIDE PICKUP. I tried out two of these services today: Sparrow Market down in Kerrytown and A&L Wine Castle on Stadium across from Westgate. I ordered in the late morning and had picked up my groceries, etc., and returned home within about an hour.

Sparrow specializes in meat but it is also a comprehensive upscale specialty market with produce and all kinds of stuff. We don’t usually buy produce there because when we are down there (buying meat), we are buying produce from the adjacent (temporarily closed) farmers market. Today I bought all produce plus a few “pantry” items. The only thing they were out of was guacamole, which didn’t surprise me. Also, when I made my order I made sure to stress that I was NOT picky about brands, etc. Whatever you have! We are all in this together!

Since this morning, I have learned that Knight’s Market (mainly meat, I think) is also doing curbside pickup, as is Monahan’s Seafood, which is in the same space as Sparrow. Then, as I was driving the “back way” over to A&L Wine Castle (weird traffic pattern, don’t ask), I passed HOMES Brewery and they were selling their beer from a tent in the parking lot and that looked like drive-through too. Last but not least, Argus Farm Stop is committed to selling food from local farmers – the farmers that are USUALLY at the farmers market. It looks like they are still figuring out how to make it work so pickup seems to be available most days but delivery is still in the works.

Caveat: these stores do not carry toilet paper!

Slugging? Nope. But I did get up 45 minutes (or so) late this AM. Why? A beautiful thunderstorm rolled through around the time I usually get up. I do NOT walk in lightning and so I hung out for a while. No tornado sirens. No trees falling on The Landfill or exploding in the woods and sending shrapnel all over the neighborhood. Just regular old thunder and lightning.

The pics? First one is flooding at Riverside Park in Ypsilanti, a mouse pic posted without permission. The second is flooding in the Landfill backyard. Minor but has caused a bit of a trickle in the Dungeon. I also received a beautiful pic of a mouse and raccoon walking around in face masks 🐸.

Black is the new horns? Or is it the new orange?

Friday, March 27th, 2020

I don’t have a lot to say tonight. Work (from home) continues to keep me sane, more or less. I was hoping it would be warm enough today for me to move my home office out to the Lyme Lounge but it wasn’t really. Hopefully soon. I am soooo glad I didn’t take the mothership up for knowledge transfer (aka retaaaarrrrment) last year because I do not know what I would do hanging around in isolation without the meetings and collaboration and the brain work.

Of course I also share this space with another person. He usually goes out walking. Today he stayed home and there was a heckuva lotta rummaging around today *inside* the Landfill and it took a lot of my best chill-out skills to ignore that. I know he was working on stuff that needed to be done but still. He usually bugs out to work on the North Country Trail and I am usually happy for him to bug out and do that. I like to be spacified. So I guess he was catching up with stuff.

We Virtual Porterized ourselves again tonight for Friday Cocktail Hour. And I am giving up on this crapola blahgola in order to get in to watch Green Acres. And then embark upon another long weekend of hanging out mostly inside…

What is it you call him again? The Orange…???

Thursday, March 26th, 2020

MMCB was asking the question and the answer is of course the Orange Baboon. No, I should not name-call but what the heck? Trump is the name-caller-in-chief so he’s in a class by himself and deserves what he gets. Like a growing number of news sources, I am trying to ignore him these days. The news is bad enough as it is without all of his self-congratulatory crapola. For what?

Am I disparaging baboons? No, I don’t think so. I am simply comparing a horrible man’s behavior to baboon behavior. Baboons are who they are and they live in the wild. The Orange Baboon is a human being and SHOULD be able to practice some self-control. [Delete a whole bunch of complicated uninformed gobblety-gook about how different humans actually are from other species.]

Years ago, we went to a North Country Trail dinner and presentation. The presenter had traveled to an African settlement to work with the people there on trail maintenance, which is not as simple as you might think. In addition to its human inhabitants, this settlement was overrun with a community of baboons. Among other behaviors they would walk in and out of the mess tent at will, grabbing bananas and whatever. Our presenter woke up his first morning there to see a big baboon hanging on his screen looking in to see who the new human was. And took a picture! I mean the presenter, not the baboon.

Anyway MMCB is my jet-setting friend and she had to cut a trip to Down Under waaaaay short because of you-know-what. She messaged me about it before she returned and asked if I wanted to meet at Barry’s that week, like we have been doing for umpteen-billion years. Since she was so far away, I told her yes but I knew we would not meet because I had already curtailed going out to restaurants. By the time she landed, everything was closed.

So we didn’t meet last week but we did FaceTime this morning and once she remembered to remove the black electrical tape she had used during some kind of Zoom meeting, I could actually see her!

Last but not least! Mouse took the pic of these Scarlet Elf Cups.

Shadows and reflections

Wednesday, March 25th, 2020

As much as I love my telecommuting “office”, which is “sittin’ on the Green Couch watchin’ all the dogz go by”, I’ve been sittin’ on the GC a LOT in the last month so today I moved out into the Landfill Backyard in the late afternoon. You can see how sunny it was/is. It was something like 55 degrees (F) but I knew I would be sitting in the shade so I wore my balaclava anyway. I did not need glubs. I mean because of cold, not virus.

It was kind of crazy listening to the neighborhood sounds this afternoon. Because it was a warm sunny day and all of the kiddos are on (dare I say it?) “coronacation” (coined by 6th grade Slauson Middle School students). I understand why it’s funny to them – I was that age once too – but…

Anyway I could hear kids playing outside and having fun EVERYWHERE. That reminded me of when my beach urchins were young and THEY were part of that cacophony. The sounds that I WASN’T crazy about emanated from the schoolyard. I dunno what was going on. I thought I heard basketballs and whatever passes for boombox music today. Social distancing? Didn’t sound like it. People are being discouraged from going to playgrounds around here (and touching anything) so I did not go anywhere near the schoolyard.

A company executive has started a work-from-home photo contest. I appreciate his effort but I’m not sure it’s the right thing to do at this moment so I will not submit today’s photooo. Anyway, it’s not all that great a photo. As much as this photooo is a good work-from-home photo, I have better ones, like the ones I have from the moomincabin. They’re just not from now in this crazy situation. But maybe I should submit them anway? We’ll see. Prob’ly not.

Simultaneously supplied and depleted

Tuesday, March 24th, 2020

Supplied? We were not low on tp exactly but as I changed out a roll this morning it had me thinking about whether I should try to order it online somewhere. As it turned out, our grocery worker texted a pic of newly arrived tp this morning. I did snag some but I told her 8-12 rolls or whatever. Not hoarding it. Also snagged *one* newly arrived canister of disinfectant wipes since I am almost down to one and rationing them.

Comic relief? None of what’s going on right now is humorous of course but I did laugh in great relief once this morning. We were on a call with India and our young colleagues over there were talking about yet *another new* virus. My brain was going in all kinds of horrible directions until I finally *processed* that they were talking about *hantavirus*! Nope, that’s not a new virus. It is a horrible virus if you get it but it’s pretty easy to avoid as long as you keep your mouse traps set.

Depleted? On a sad note, we lost the last of my dad’s siblings this morning when his much younger sister died at 91. This was not COVID related in the sense that she didn’t *have* the virus but I suspect that necessary hospital precautions were a contributing factor. But I don’t have details and it wouldn’t be my place to report them if I did.

So long Bubs/Gene. We miss you. Godspeed. 🧡🧡🧡

You can’t fix stupid

Monday, March 23rd, 2020

So says one of my Trumper facebook “friends” when he posts memes and articles from questionable sources that denigrate “democrats” or “socialists” or “communists”. You know, people like me, except not.

With That Virus afoot, would you – a week ago – have traveled to a foreign country (on a plane) to take a week’s vacation? I’m actually kinda wondering if I’ll even make it up to the moomincabin this summer and I can drive there without even stopping at a public restroom if I need to, via woodsP. But more on that some other day.

With That Virus afoot, if your parents returned (in the last couple days) from a vacation to a foreign country (on a plane), would you buy them groceries and go inside their house – with them there – to help them put said groceries away?

Asking for a friend.

I won’t go any further with this as it is not my story to tell. Suffice it to say that child custody issues were involved as were the police but it all turned out as it should have with no further potential exposure, at least not to my friend. And the police were on the good side here and acted appropriately.

But Jeebus, this kind of stoopid scenario is how That Virus is being spread. Stop Stop Stop people. Parents, our community health is more important than how many hours you spend with your kid. Always but especially now. STAY HOME and keep your child in whichever household has the least exposure.

Me? Somehow our overnight snowfall calmed me (for a while) this morning. I do not know why. I guess maybe it reminded me of the good old days. You know, a few weeks ago when it was winter and we were not afraid to go anywhere?

It is late March and this morning’s snow has completely melted even without much help from Mr. Golden Sun.

Vector math

Sunday, March 22nd, 2020

Another afternoon of reading in the Lyme Lounge parked in a state park parking lot. We are fortunate that we can tow a home-away-from-home with us and not have to get too close to anyone else. And I have to say there were a LOT of people out at the parks both yesterday and today, hiking and biking and whatever. Many of them were at least our age. Problem? I saw all of those folks as vectors. Stay away from me, please. When was the last time you went to the grocery store? For that reason, we did not hike. A bit of paranoia? Maybe… But “we” really don’t have anything approaching comprehensive knowledge about this virus, including how it spreads. Hiking near a bunch of people? How many of them are asymptomatic? Nope. I’m even a wee bit nervous about my 0-skunk-30 but so few people are out then…

We have neighbors who are self-quarantining at this moment following their return from a trip to Europe. I kind of figured out their quarantine low-key Gladys Kravitz style but apparently the GG had an actual appropriately distanced convo with them. They are being responsible and not coming over to borrow a cup of sugar, not that 1) they ever HAVE asked to borrow sugar from us or 2) that I reliably have sugar on hand for borrowing.

Anyway, we spent some time reading in the Lyme Lounge again this afternoon and here is the GG tinkering with an invention that has something to do with turning off the water switch if it gets left on while we are hauling the Lyme Lounge down the road. His invention didn’t work today but I’m pretty sure he isn’t done with it yet.

I love the North Country Trail badges on the wall there. I am less impressed with the TP button to the right of the sink and not in the pic.

And a funny? A couple of people (around our age and so shouldn’t have been walking around out at the geology center) walked by the LL at one point. The GG was outside (on the OTHER side of the LL from them). They told him they were peeping. He asked them if they had seen anything interesting. Their response was that if the trailer had been rocking, they wouldn’t have peeped. Of course nothing was rocking, just me reading on my iPhone and slowly sipping a glass of cab.

Weekend decadence, the virtual version

Saturday, March 21st, 2020

First up, Oscar Tangoing from a distance. We have been hanging out at the Oscar Tango with these beautiful folks on Friday nights for YEARS! Actually in the last year or so we vary our location a bit, sometimes going to the Griz or Red Hawk or Amadeus. Here’s what we did LAST night. We are sitting in our own Cozy Room getting virtually porterized via skype or whatever.

Saturday in the middle of a plague. We often go out to lunch on Saturdays, usually at the Griz. Man oh man, the last time I was at the Griz was a Saturday toward the end of February when Lizard Breath and I walked down. One of the last things we were thinking about was viruses. THIS afternoon, the GG saddled the Lyme Lounge up to Mooon Yooonit and we trucked out to a state park and sat in the parking lot to read and have beer/whine for a bit. The place was pretty slammed with people for this time of year (cold but sunny), enough that I would’ve been uncomfortable walking around amongst them.

I picked up my first grocery order EVER today. I ordered from the Westgate Kroger. I ordered non-perishables only. I like to pick out my own meat/veg/etc. I do trust my own personal grocery worker to pick those things out for me because she is even pickier than me. Kroger was out of a couple things on my list but I have to say that other than that (which is understandable) I was 100% impressed with the service. Our pickup delivery person was wonderful (and brave) and I thanked her pretty profusely.

Social distancing out on the trails

Friday, March 20th, 2020

Before I received this pic, I received a text message “SIX FEET, SIR”. Why did this alarm me? Because I *correctly* figured out that mouse/raccoon had met up with the GG out at the Geology Center. This was a coincidental meetup. Mouse had said they would be going hiking at “the bog”. I knew what bog they were talking about but not so sure the GG did.

But they did meet up and I was freaked out that the GG might have tried to hug his daughter. No. Do not hug your “millennial” kids you stoopid boomers and our millennial children are right in there with us on this, especially when some of them are grocery workers. Moom and dad, don’t go out in public.

So eventually, we all figgered out that mouse took this pic of the GG and he took a pic of mouse/raccoon. The pics were taken and sent at the same time but were not delivered simultaneously so I was a little freaked out like how long were these people distancing and how long does That Virus remain in the air. But not.

A plug for grocery workers in general. I never worked in a grocery store but I ran a cash register in a KMart-style discount store (Tempo) back when I was in college. I LOVED it. I was GOOD at it. I had to deal with any and all manner of stupidity and nastiness from customers but I HANDLED IT and I had people choosing to get in my line because they liked me (and I was FAST). One time some old farmer brought his whole family in to meet me because he liked me so much.

I made something like $1.75 an hour and I was paid in cash in a little envelope.

Back in those days I was not one bit afraid of catching a virus from one of my customers at the checkout. If I ever did it was mild and short-lived. I have a pretty dern good immune system and I can fend off the usual viruses. The COVID-19 virus is different. My retail job was years ago. Nowadays I have a fintech job and I am hunkering down telecommuting to it from the Landfill. Please please please remember how vulnerable your grocery store workers are and be extra nice to them.