Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Smoke on the Water

Or the marsh, as the case may be.

We don't live where there are usually wildfires. Swamp wood stays too damp, i always thought. Now i'm wondering.

Monday i started to notice a wheezing in my right lung. It does that, in the area with the scarring from the pneumonia, when i am overtired, working too hard, ill, or exposed to certain smells and pollutants. By Monday evening a scratchiness had been added in the throat. almost felt like paper stuck to the back of my tongue.

Tuesday, walking out the door to walk Hazelnut, i noticed the smell right away. Acrid, like something burning. Very faint, but it was there.

A couple of hours later, as i went out to hang the laundry to dry, the haze became noticeable, and #2 Son pointed out the smell. Because of our wonky electric set up in this house, fire is something i greatly fear. So i went out and circled the house, looking it over, making sure this wasn't a smouldering something in our attic. No sign of smoke from our property or any of the neighbors. Still a haze and smell, and my throat got bad enough that i started gargling the salt water, wondering if i was coming down with an infection.

By noon, everyone around here was smelling it. Sweetie called from work to ask if i had noticed it. It relieved me in one way that it was being noted in other parts of town, but concerned me that no one seemed to know what was going on.

After dinner, the air wasn't just a light haze, it was smoky. When i went to get the clothes in, much later than what i wanted, i tried to breathe as little as possible, it was so irritating to my lung and throat. Apparently everyone was talking about it, and i decided to search the all-informative Google to see what i could find.

Finally, the answer, on the local news website. DEQ is saying it is most likely smoke from a marsh fire in New Orleans East. Apparently the Big Easy has been blanketed in smoke for 3 days, and it is blowing our way. Particulate tests show fire related particles in the air up here, and at points between.

The fire departments and emergency personnel have been peppered with calls about it, too, and are reassuring people it's not local, and that people like me, who are sensitive to this stuff, should not go out for prolonged periods.

If it gets any worse, an air quality alert will be issued.

Meanwhile, Smoke on the Marsh -- i like the other title better.

Today is:

Constitution Day -- Kazakhstan

Day of Solidarity and Freedom -- Poland

Eat Outside Day -- as long as you won't pass out from the heat

Eid al Fitr -- Islam

Festal Day -- Order of the Eastern Star

La Tomatina -- Buñol, Valencia, Spain (annual citywide food fight festival in which around 30,000 people take to the streets to pelt each other with tomatoes)

Limba Noastra -- Moldova (Day of Our Language)

Independence Day -- Kyrgyzstan; Malaysia (Hari Merdeka/Freedom Day); Trinidad & Tobago

International Day of Blogs and Bloggers --

Love Litigating Lawyers Day (Yes, God tells us to love everybody, even litigation attorneys. He never said doing it would be easy.)

National Trail Mix Day

St. Aidan's Day

St. Raymond Nonnatus' Day -- (Patron of childbirth, children, falsely accused people, fever, midwives, newborn babies, obstetricians, and pregnant women)

Usuki Stone Buddhas Fire Festival -- Usuki, Japan (torchlight at twilight lights the regions mysterious Buddha statues)

Willing to Lend a Hand Wednesday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

Birthdays Today:

Jeff Hardy, 1977
Richard Gere, 1949
Itzhak Perlman, 1945
Marva Collins, 1936
Frank Robinson, 1935
James Coburn, 1928
Buddy Hackett, 1924
Alan Jay Lerner, 1918
Arthur Godfrey, 1903
Maria Montessori, 1870

Today in History:

Traditional date upon which Ayonwentah (Haiwatha) and Deganawidah (The Great Peacemaker) assist the Iroquois tribes in establishing the Confederation of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois Confederacy, or League of Five Nations), 1142
Lewis and Clark begin their expedition, 1803
A nuts and bolts machine is patented by Micah Rugg, 1842
The first professional football game is played in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, 1895
Edison patents the Kinetograph, 1897
Mrs. Adolph Landenburg, a horse rider, debuts the split skirt, 1902
Debut of Foghorn Leghorn, 1946
Solidarity Labor Union forms in Poland, 1980
Diana, Princess of Wales, her companion Dodi Al-Fayed and driver Henri Paul die in a car crash in Paris, 1997
Stolen on August 22, 2004, Edvard Munch's famous painting The Scream is recovered in a raid by Norwegian police, 2006

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

You Too?

"Come sit with me a moment." Sweetie was calling me from his man cave, where he had gone to get his glass of wine to have with dinner. He keeps his wine in a mini fridge in there.

So in i went, to the sanctum sanctorum where i generally step lightly, grab a tool or put it away quickly, and don't look too closely at what he has or has left lying around.

He was sitting at his small table with an array of wine glasses in front of him. He started talking about work, leaned back, opened his mini fridge, and grabbed out his wine jug. Then he looked at the wine glasses in front of him, noted, "I need to wash these tonight," grabbed the nearest and peered inside. With a mild, "Ugh" as his only reaction, he then proceeded to pour in the wine and take a sip.

Now i think i know where the children get it. He still doesn't understand what was so funny that i burst out laughing, either.

Today is:

Day of Satisfying the Hearts of the Ennead (Nine Major Gods) -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Eid al-Fitr -- Islam (end of Ramadan fast)

Frankenstein Day -- in honor of Mary Shelley

Huey P. Long Day -- Louisiana

International Day of the Disappeared

National Holistic Pet Day

National Toasted Marshmallow Day

Santa Rosa de Lima -- Peru

St. Fiacre's Day (Patron of gardeners)

St. Pammachius' Day

Toasted Marshmallow Day

Touch a Heart Tuesday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

Victory Day -- Turkey

Birthdays Today:

Cameron Diaz, 1972
Peggy Lipton, 1947
Frank "Tug" McGraw, 1944
Jean-Claude Killy, 1943
Warren Buffett, 1930
Ted Williams, 1918
Fred MacMurray, 1908
Shirley Booth, 1898
Huey P. Long, 1893
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, 1797

Today in History:

European leaders, in an attempt to end war "for all time", outlaw the crossbow, 1146
One of the largest naval battles in history, during the last decade of the ailing, Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty, begins between the forces of two Chinese rebel leaders, 1363
Capture of the entire Dutch fleet by British forces under the command of Sir Ralph Abercromby and Admiral Sir Charles Mitchell, 1799
Founding of Melbourne, Australian, 1835
Founding of Houston, Texas, 1836
Hubert Cecil Booth patents the vacuum cleaner, 1901
The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in south Louisiana, the longest bridge over water (continuous, not aggregate) that is not also a viaduct, opens, 1956
The Hotline between the leaders of the U.S.A. and the Soviet Union goes into operation, 1963
Thurgood Marshall is confirmed as the first African American Justice of the United States Supreme Court, 1967
Guion Bluford becomes the first African American astronaut in space, 1983
NATO launches Operation Deliberate Force against Bosnian Serb forces, 1995

Monday, August 29, 2011

Around This Time

Just a few years ago, right around the end of August, we watched a hurricane come through and tear apart the Gulf Coast.

Those on the East Coast now have my deepest sympathy. It's not easy living without power for weeks and with infrastructure damaged or gone.

Puts the problems we have with the car in perspective when i remember back, and think about people who have just lost so much.

On a totally different note, the tiny girl kitten, a tortie, only lived a couple of hours after she arrived here. At least she was warm and fed and safe.

Little brother is eating, but at this age, it's still too soon to tell.

Today is

According to Hoyle Day

Birthday of Hathor -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Burning Man 2011 -- Black Rock Desert, NV, US (through Sept. 5; a radical way to celebrate the arts through desert survival and building a 50-foot statue to be burned)

Chop Suey Day

Day of Loose Talk -- Fairy Calendar

Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist
Head Day -- Iceland (a weather omen day; whatever today's weather, it will stay the same for at least 3 weeks)

Lemon Juice Day

Liberation Day -- Hong Kong

More Herbs, Less Salt Day

Motorist Consideration Monday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

National Old-Time Country Music Festival -- LeMars, IA, US (through Sept. 4)

Ould Lammas Fair -- Ballycastle, Co. Antrim, Ireland (through tomorrow)

Runic Half-Month Rad begins (Motion)

Slovak National Uprising Anniversary -- Slovakia

St. Sabina's day (Patron Saint of Housewives)

Xuedun (Shoton) Festival -- Tibet (a form of Tibetan opera; through Sept. 6)

Birthdays Today

Michael Jackson, 1958
Elliot Gould, 1938
John McCain, 1936
Richard Attenborough, 1923
Charlie "Bird" Parker, 1920
Isabel Sanford, 1917
Ingrid Bergman, 1915
Preston Sturges, 1898
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., 1809
John Locke, 1632

Today in History

Era of Diocletian (Martyrs), the last major time of persecution for the early Christian churches, begins with Gen. Gaius Aurelius V Diocletianus Jovius becoming emperor of Rome, 284
Japan mints its first copper coins, 708
The last Incan King of Peru, Atahualpa, is executed by order of Francisco Pizarro, 1533
The first Indian "reservation" is formed by the New Jersey Legislature, 1758
Michael Faraday discovers electromagnetic induction, 1831
The United Kingdom legislates the abolition of slavery in its empire, 1833
Treaty of Nanking signing ends the First Opium War, 1842
The first motorcycle is patented in Germany by Gottlieb Daimler, 1885
The chef of a visiting Chinese Ambassador invents "chop suey" in NYC, 1896
The Goodyear tire company is founded, 1898
The Quebec Bridge collapses during construction, killing 75 workers, 1907
Ishi, considered the last Native American to make contact with European Americans, emerges from the wilderness of northeastern California, 1911
The Soviet Union tests its first atomic bomb, 1949
Speedy Gonzales makes his debut, 1953
The Beatles perform their last concert before paying fans at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, 1966
Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union suspends all activities of the Soviet Communist Party, 1991
Hurricane Katrina devastates much of the U.S. Gulf Coast, 2005

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Scary Small

"Hi, aren't you one of the people who does bottle feeding kittens?"

That's the risk i take, coming to the pet store to drop kittens for an adoption event, that my reputation will precede me.

Yes, i answered. What's up?

"Well, I'm with NH, but a friend of mine with The Purr has a friend who needs someone to take some kittens."

If The Purr will be responsible for the medical and getting them fixed, i'll do it. Want them to call me, or should i call them?

"Oh, I'll give you here number. It's Ellen, and I'm Helen, by the way."

Okay, thank you Helen, and i'll give Ellen a call when i get home.

So, call to Ellen, turned out that it wasn't her, it was a friend whose daughter needed help. After several calls, i finally got to talk to Becca, who had the kittens.

"They are from one of the ferals that hang out here by our barn. She's very smart and has eluded every trap. This time she had babies in the neighbor's shed, and he moved them, so now she walks right past them for her food and ignores them. The Purr will help get them fixed, and we will take them back."

Okay, where are you, and how do you want me to get them?

"Well, we live out in S---, but I'm coming into town to get formula for them, so I'll drop them to you."

About an hour later, i was peering into a box at two newborns. It had been four, but since they have not been fed, two died that morning. Still will the umbilical cords attached, it's an orange tabby male and a tortie female, beautiful and scary small. We can feel every rib.

Within a half hour they had been pottied, fed -- although the tiny female didn't want to eat much -- given warmed up subcue fluids, and were sleeping on a heating pad. We've had to change our usual keep them on the floor in the kitchen pattern because of the Hazelnut. They would make a perfect puppy size snack, and she's too small to realize they aren't toys.

Truly i'm not sure how much hope to hold out for these two. The only babies i've ever seen that were smaller were from a very sick mama they C-sectioned a week early.

Today is

Assumption of Mary -- Eastern Orthodox Churches
Public Holiday -- Georgia; Republic of Macedonia; Serbia

Crackers Over the Keyboard Day -- internet generated: are we supposed to go crackers over our keyboard, or tempt fate by eating crackers over our keyboard?

Festival for Luna -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Ises Solar World Congress -- Kassel, Germany (through Sept. 2; the largest scientific congress on solar energy)

National Cheese Sacrifice Day (Now you know why you purchased the cheese for the sacrifice! To let it age properly before the actual sacrifice. Still doesn't answer why we sacrifice it, anyway, or to whom.)

National Cherry Turnover Day

National Heroes Day -- Philippines

Notting Hill Carnival -- Notting Hill, London, UK (through tomorrow, the 2nd largest street festival in the world)

Pony Express Festival -- Hollenberg Pony Express Station, Hanver, KS, US (reenacting life in the 1860's, including a real Pony Express ride)

Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day -- to pep yourself up as you wait for things to come up on the screen

Runic Half Month Rad begins (motion)

Sacrifice Our Wants for Others’ Needs Sunday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

St. Augustine of Hippo's Day (patron Saint of brewers and printers)

St. Hermes' Day

Birthdays Today

LeAnn Rimes, 1982
Jack Black, 1969
Jason Priestley, 1969
Shania Twain, 1965
Scott Hamilton, 1958
Ben Gazzara, 1930
Charles Boyer, 1899
Leo Tolstoy, 1828
Elizabeth Ann Seton, 1774
Johann von Goethe, 1749

Today in History

The Third Crusade begins with the siege of Acre, 1189
6,000 Jews are killed in Mainz, accused of being the cause of the plague, 1349
St. Augustine, FL, founded, making it the oldest continuously occupied European city and port in the US, 1565
Henry Hudson discovers Delaware Bay, 1609
William Herschel discovers a new moon of Saturn, 1789
The first steam locomotive in the US, the "Tom Thumb", runs from Baltimore to Ellicotts Mill, 1830
The first issue of Scientific American magazine is published, 1845
The United States takes possession of the, at this point unoccupied, Midway Atoll, 1867
Caleb Bradham renames his carbonated soft drink "Pepsi-Cola", 1898
James E. Casey begins the United Parcel Service in Seattle, WA, 1907
WEAF in NYC airs the very first radio commercial, for Queensboro Realty, at a cost of $100 for ten minutes, 1922
Toyota Motors becomes an independent company, 1937
Nippon Television broadcasts Japan's first tv show and ad, 1953
Motown releases what would be its first #1 hit, "Please Mr. Postman" by The Marvelettes, 1961
Martin Luther King, Jr. gives his I Have a Dream speech; Emily Hoffert and Janice Wylie are murdered in their Manhattan flat, prompting the events that would lead to the passing of the Miranda Rights, 1963
The National Centers for Disease Control announce a high incidence of pneumocystis and Kaposi's sarcoma in gay men; these will soon be recognized as symptoms of an immune disorder, which will be called AIDS, 1981
Iraq declares Kuwait to be its newest province, 1990
Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales divorce, 1996
An electric blackout leaves 500,000 + without power and shuts down 60% of London's Underground, 2003
Hurricane Katrina begins to make landfall on the Gulf of Mexico, 2005

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Anyone Want The News?

On the car: it is back in the shop. The dealership is looking into the idea that some of the repairs may have been unneeded. They will not charge us to look at it, and we will probably hear back some time next week. Meanwhile, i think they mean it about taking care of it this time as they have provided us with a loaner car at no expense to us.

On Hazelnut: she's doing well. Loves to play with Tugger cat, but she is so rough someone has to rescue the cat when she gets over excited. She has learned what "Time out" means, and has to be carried to the time out corner, so she is trying to control her puppy over-playfullness now. Mercy and the adult cats still want nothing to do with her at all. She now has a special water bowl she can't turn over, so instead she puts her paws in and splashes the water out onto the towel i leave under it -- that's the Lab in her, i'm sure. Next up is to try to afford a crate.

On the cats: mad as the dickens about the dog (except Tugger) but enamored with puppy chow. In fact, the language used has been downright forcible, and makes me glad i don't speak cat. It used to be i just had to monitor the adults not getting the kitten food and vice versa. Now, it's a 3 way relay.

On the shelter: yes, we still clean it once a week. Angel has been adopted, Dustie is in a foster home. There are usual comings and goings, but mostly kittens are getting adopted, though not my two remaining, there are too many black or black and whites available, and they are always adopted last. Baby is as mean as ever, and although the new pheromone collar on Frieda is mellowing her a bit, Baby is not having the same reaction. Lucky is considered to be on hospice care now, and as long as he is eating and happy, will simply remain as a sort of shelter mascot.

On Sweetie's work: while the lifting did not injure his back (thank goodness), it has re-injured his arm. It will heal, but he will have to be very careful for a couple of weeks.

Well, i think that about uses up all the news here at Casa Crazy. Tune in next time, when you will hear Bigger Girl ask, "How would they treat someone who became addicted to counseling?"

Today is

Anniversary of the Market Women's Revolt -- Guinea

Banana Lover's Day

Bartletide -- West Witton, Yorkshire Dales, England (the burning of the Bartle, an effigy of a sheep thief, done year after year as a warning to the light fingered)

De Ducasse -- Ath, Belgium (Giants of Ath Festival, celebration of David defeating Goliath; through tomorrow)

Feast Day of Pan -- Ancient Greek Calendar (date approximate)

Feast of Incandescent Rebellion -- on lots of websites, and supposedly something celebrated in China, but no detail as to what it is really celebrating

Ferret Buckeye Bash -- Colombus, OH, US (ferret show)

Global Forgiveness Day

Just Because Day -- internet generated, enjoy something ordinary you like to do, just because!

Koenji Awa Odori Festival -- Suginami City, Tokyo, Japan (thousands dance in the streets, through tomorrow)

Moldova National Day/Independence Day

National Pots de Creme Day

Petroleum Day

Procession of Bast; Birthday of Nut -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Sheep Market Fair -- Ho, Denmark (annual sheep market and family fair)

Sidewalk Art Festival -- Portland, ME, US

Software Freedom Day -- celebrating free and shareware software

Speak Kind Words Saturday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

St. Caesarius' Day

St. Monica's Day

"The Duchess" Who Wasn't Day -- birthday of Margaret Wolfe Hungerford, who wrote under the pseudonym "The Duchess" and first said, "Beaty is in the eye of the beholder" in her novel, Molly Bawn

Volturnalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (god of water)

Vuelta a Espana -- Spain (third and final Grand Tour of world cycling; through Sept. 18)

Birthdays Today

Paul "Pee-wee Herman" Reubens, 1952
Barbara Bach, 1947
Tuesday Weld, 1943
Martha Raye, 1916
Mother Teresa, 1910
Lyndon B. Johnson, 1908
C.S. Forester, 1899
Samuel Goldwyn, 1882

Today in History

The Persian invasion of Greece is halted with Greek victories in two separate battles, BC479
Koreans battle and prevent Japanese invasion, 663
The first unmanned hydrogen balloon flight reaching 900 m altitude, 1783
Petroleum is discovered in Titusville, Pennsylvania leading to the world's first commercially successful oil well, 1859
The shortest war in world history occurs from 09:00 to 09:45 between the United Kingdom and Zanzibar, 1896
Edgar Rice Burroughs' publishes "Tarzan of the Apes", 1912
First flight of the turbojet-powered Heinkel He 178, the world's first jet aircraft, 1939
The Mariner 2 unmanned space mission is launched to Venus by NASA, 1962
Turkish military diplomat Colonel Atilla Altikat is shot and killed in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 1982
The Rainbow Bridge, connecting Tokyo's Shibaura and the island of Odaiba, is completed, 1993
Mars makes its closest approach to Earth in nearly 60,000 years, 2003
The skeletal remains of Alexei Nikolaevich, Tsarevich of Russia, and his sister Anastasia are found near Yekaterinburg, Russia, 2007

Friday, August 26, 2011

Warning: Rant Ahead

Okay, now we are angry.

Sweetie went to pick up the car. Another $400+.

Before he got it home, the check engine light was back on, and, to add insult to injury, when we dropped it off, the A/C worked. Now, it does not.

So in discussing this with them and with Sweetie, i compared the invoices. It turns out that 3 of the 6 DTCS codes that came up with both repairs are IDENTICAL.

This could mean that the things they repaired the first time were not really broken, but merely that the wires that connect them to the car's computer were damaged, thus mistakenly telling the computer they were broken.

We could have spent more than half of the first repair bill for nothing.

Also, it's a minimum $100 service fee to even get them to look at it! We just don't have it, especially if they mistakenly repaired stuff that was in good shape the first time to begin with.

So now we are stuck, and i am angry. Since i don't make good decisions when i am angry, the car will sit until i can get some advice from a family member who is friends with the dealer who both sold us this vehicle, and whose service shop repaired it.

Meanwhile, #1 Son will have to continue to use Sweetie's vehicle to go to work and school, and Sweetie will have to continue to bum rides with The Mouth or co-workers, who, by the way, left him to do heavy lifting when they all abandoned a project in the middle, even though it is in his records that his doctor orders he lift no more than 30 lbs. because of his bulging disk. Imagine being left to their tender mercies. Or i have to get him to work, then he has to wait until i've gotten home from school with the kids to come get him, which means spending almost an extra two hours at work. Can you tell i'm raving because i'm so angry, i don't even know if i'm making sense, i now understand the people in the Bible who would diloricate from frustration or anger or sorrow.

Now i'm wrung out from rehashing it twice, here and in the email i sent that aforementioned family member, as well as from the computer acting up the whole time.

Next step, unknown, but it will have to involve getting calmed down.

Today is:

Corn and Apple Festival -- Morden, MB, Canada (fun and free; through the 28th)

Daffodil Day -- American Cancer Society

Fiesta La Ballona -- Culver City, CA, US (through the 28th, a tradition since 1951)

First Thnork of the Year -- Fairy Calendar

Forgive Your Foe Friday -- part of Be Kind to Humankind Week

Green Corn Pow Wow -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (through the 28th, Pow Wow and presentations of Native heritage to all)

Heroes Day -- Namibia

Ilmatar Day -- Finland (Water Mother, goddess of the heavens)

Lailat al Kadr -- Islam

Make Your Own Luck Day

National Dog Day

National Cherry Popsicle Day

St. Zeohyrinnus' Day

Toilet Paper Day -- not sure why today, but what would we do without it?

Women's Equality Day -- US (commemorates Women's Suffrage)

Yoshida no Hi Matsuri -- Yoshida, Japan (fest to mark the end of Mt. Fuji climbing season; through tomorrow)

Birthdays Today:

Macaulay Culkin, 1980
Branford Marsalis, 1960
Ben Bradlee, 1921
Mother Teresa, 1910
Christopher Isherwood, 1904
Peggy Guggenheim, 1898
Albert "Bertie" von Saksen-Coburg-Gotha, husband of queen Victoria, 1819
Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, 1743

Today in History:

Michelangelo is commissioned to carve the Pieta, 1498
The Pennsylvania Ministerium, the first Lutheran denomination in North America, is founded in Philadelphia, 1748
John Fitch is granted a US patent for his working steamboat, 1791
Charles Thurber patents a typewriter, 1843
The first news dispatch by telegraph is made, 1858
Major eruption of Krakatoa, 36,000 dead, 1883
19th Amendment to the US Constitution, granting women the vote, takes effect, 1920
The first Major League Baseball game is telecast, 1939
The USSR announces the first successful test of an ICBM, 1957
The Charter of the French Language is adopted by the National Assembly of Quebec, 1977
John Paul I is elected Pope, 1978
The agreement on how to divide the Czech Republic and Slovakia is signed, 1992
Russia unilaterally recognizes the independence of the former Georgian breakaway republics Abkhazia and South Ossetia, 2008

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Strange Diagnosis

On the car.

There is a cover in the engine that protects some wires.

It has been cut, and something rubbing against it was cutting the wires, thus blowing fuses.

Over $400 to repair.

Not covered by the warranty.

They cannot tell me why it happened, only to say it looks like someone tried to modify or add something to the engine at one point.

It's the oddest thing.

Of course, we are stuck. And so it goes. The money, that is.

As for the vehicle, i'm not sure what to think. How could they have been dinking around in there not two weeks ago, and not noticed this?

Let's just hope that none of #1 Son's friends are the ones trying to modify his engine.

Today is

Be Kind to Humankind Week begins -- through the 31st; today is Thoughtful Thursday, take extra time to be thoughtful

Discovery of the Runes/Odin's Ordeal ends -- Ancient Norse Calendar

Hotter 'n Hell Hundred Bike Race -- Wichita Falls, TX, US (largest sanctioned century ride in the US, through the 28rh)

Independence Day -- Uruguay

Kiss and Make Up Day

National Banana Split Day -- some sites have it as Aug. 10

National Second-Hand Wardrobe Day -- pull out the hand-me-downs or thrift store purchases and wear them with pride!

Opiconsivia -- Ancient Roman Calendar, Vestal Virgin Festival in honor of Ops

Rumpleskunkskin's Bride Escapes to Heewigoland -- Fairy Calendar (Fairy celebration, Goblins get grumpy)

Soldier's Day -- Brazil

St. Genesius' Day (patron of actors, attorneys, barristers, clowns, comedians, comediennes, comics, converts, dancers, epileptics, lawyers, musicians, printers, stenographers and torture victims)

St. Louis, King of France's Day (Louis IX)

Watermelon Festival -- Winterville, North Carolina, through the 27th

Whiskey Sour Day

Zucchini Festival -- Obetz, Ohio, through the 28th

Birthdays Today

Claudia Schiffer, 1970
Rachael Ray, 1968
Billy Ray Cyrus, 1961
Ann Archer, 1947
Regis Philbin, 1933
Sean Connery, 1930
Leonard Bernstein, 1918
Walt Kelly, 1913
Ruby Keeler, 1909
Clara Bow, 1905
Hans Adolf Krebs, 1900
Ludwig II, "Mad King" of Bavaria, 1845
Allan Pinkerton, 1819
Ivan the Terrible, 1530

Today in History

The Council of Nicaea ends with the adoption of the Nicene Creed, 325
The Children's Crusaders under Nicholas reach Genoa, 1212
The Honourable Artillery Company, the oldest surviving regiment in the British Army, and the second most senior, is formed, 1537
Galileo demonstrates his first telescope to Venetian lawmakers, 1609
Hundreds of French settlers arrive in New Orleans, which had been founded only a few months before, marking its true beginnings as a city, not just an outpost, 1718
James Cook begins his first voyage, 1768
Alice Meynell becomes the first female jockey, in England, 1804
British forces destroy the Library of Congress, which then contained about 3,000 books, 1814
The New York Sun perpetrates the Great Moon Hoax, 1835
Kitasato Shibasaburo discovers the infectious agent of the bubonic plague and publishes his findings in The Lancet, 1894
The United States National Park Service is created, 1916
US Army officer and missionary John Birch is killed by the armed supporters of the Communist Party of China, considered by some as the first victim of the Cold War, 1945
Zimbabwe joins the United Nations, 1980
Voyager 2 spacecraft makes its closest approach to Saturn, 1981
Tadeusz Mazowiecki is chosen as the first non-communist Prime Minister in Central and Eastern Europe, 1989
Mayumi Moriyama becomes Japan's first female cabinet secretary, 1989
The Tli Cho land claims agreement is signed between the Dogrib First Nations and the Canadian federal government in Rae-Edzo (now called Behchoko), 2003

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Here We Go Again

"Hey, mom? Exactly what did they fix on the car when you took it in?" #1 Son was breezing through for a banana and glass of milk before heading to class.

Well, i don't remember exactly, but it was 3 things, plus some stuff that had been recalled, and any of those 3 could have been making it run roughly, why?

"It's doing the same thing again, and the check engine light is back on, and it's really annoying."

You're telling me?

So, it's back in the shop, another two or three days waiting to find out what's wrong.

This time, it better be covered by that nice warranty we bought.

Today is:

Flag Day -- Liberia

Gangara Fire Festival -- Atago Shrine, Ikeda City, Japan

Independence Day -- Ukraine

International Day Against Intolerance, Discrimination and Violence Based on Musical Preference, Lifestyle, and Dress Code

Knife Day -- internet generated, but how would we cook without them? today remember how much you do each day with a good kitchen knife.

Mundus Patet -- Ancient Roman Calendar (harvest festival that includes ancestors spirits or "Manes", giving rise to the term Mania Festival)

National Peach Pie Day

National Waffle Day

Schaferlauf -- Markgroeningen, Germany (Festival to honor St. Bartholomew, Patron of Herdsmen, on this day or the weekend after; includes traditional barefoot race by children of active shepherds and water carrying contests; also now has a music festival as well)

St. Bartholomew's Day

St. Owen of Rouen's Day (Patron Saint of Innkeepers, and against Deafness; sometimes spelled Ouen or Audenus)

Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration -- Shelbyville, TN, US (through Sept. 3, with World Grand Championship titles to be awarded)

Vesuvius Day

Waratambar -- New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea (a native thanksgiving)

William Wilberforce Day -- Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, OH, US

Birthday's Today:

Rupert Grint, 1988
Marlee Matlin, 1965
Cal Ripken, Jr., 1962
Steve Guttenberg, 1958
Yasser Arafat, 1929
Hal Smith, 1916
Duke Paoa Kahanamoku, 1890
Daniel Gooch, 1816
William Wilberforce, 1759

Today in History:

The eruption of Mt. Vesuvius buries Pompeii and Herculaneum, 15,000 die, 79
The Visigoths under Aleric begin to pillage Rome, 410
King John of England, a/k/a Humpty Dumpty for having to issue the first Magna Carta, marries Isabella of Angoileme, 1200
Six thousand Jews are killed in Mainz after being blamed for the bubonic plague, 1349
The printing of the Gutenberg Bible is completed, 1456
The first English convoy lands at Surat, India, 1608
Calcutta, India is founded, 1690
British troops invade Washington, D.C. and burn down the White House and several other buildings, 1814
Charles Darwin is asked to travel on HMS Beagle, 1831
The Panic of 1857 begins, touching off one of the most severe economic crises in US history (Which just goes to show you, the more things change, the more they stay the same), 1857
Cornelius Swarthout patents the waffle iron, 1869
The Wolseley Expedition reaches Manitoba to end the Red River
Rebellion, 1870
Captain Matthew Webb became first person to swim English Channel, 1875
Thomas Edison patents the motion picture camera, 1891
Workers start pouring concrete for the Panama Canal, 1909
Amelia Earhart becomes the first woman to fly non-stop across the North American continent, 1932
The treaty creating NATO goes into effect, 1949
France explodes its first hydrogen bomb, thus becoming the world's fifth nuclear power, 1968
Voyager 2 (launched 1977) reaches Neptune, 1989
Mikhail Gorbachev resigns as head of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, 1991
The first RFID human implantation is tested in the UK, 1998
Argon fluorohydride, the first Argon compound ever known, is discovered at the University of Helsinki, 2000
The International Astronomical Union (IAU) redefines the term "planet" such that Pluto is considered a Dwarf Planet, 2006

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Veterinarian Says

Hazelnut doesn't look like she really has any terrier in her. She has more of a Lab/hound look. From this day forward, because so many people are terrified of pit bull terrier type dogs, she is simply to be called a Lab mix. My take on it is she's part Chocolate Lab, and part the mutt up the street who got to the Lab before the breeder could have her properly serviced.

Second, she is about 4 months old, so her feet are about as big as they will get. That means, from the size of her paws, that she will probably stay a medium size, around 25-30 lbs.

Third, she has been wormed and deflea-ed, with great success.

Fourth, it's time for puppy training and, because of her owner, Miss Lizzie's, chronic disability, we need to consider getting her trained to be an official service dog. The vet knows a lady, and i've met her and worked with her partner. This could be a great thing.

Fifth, she has had her first shots, including rabies, and is scheduled for her boosters and spaying next month. We are to watch for swelling of the face, hives, vomiting or diarrhea over the next couple of days. Also, she should be a bit sore and lethargic for a short time. So far, no sign of any of this, and she is tearing through the house like a whirlwind as i write.

Finally, her first heartworm preventive came in a free puppy kit. She will get the dose on the first of September, and is to be given a dose of that and flea drops the first of every month for the rest of her life.

So Hazelnut is properly vetted and on her way to a healthy life.

Today is

Black Ribbon Day -- Estonia; Latvia; Lithuania

European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism -- European Union

Flag Day -- Ukraine

Freyfaxi -- Asatru (harvest festival)

Great Feast of the Netjeru (all gods and goddesses) -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and Its Abolition

National Spongecake Day

Nemeseia -- Ancient Greek Calendar (local festival to the goddess Nemesis, date approximate)

Ride the Wind Day -- internet generated, a day to get out and ride with the wind in your hair, in whatever transport you choose, or fly a kite

Sento Kuyo -- Nenbutsu-Ji Temple, Adashino, Kyoto, Japan (memorial service for graves that no longer have families to tend them; through tomorrow)

St. Apolinaris' Day

St. Rose of Lima's Day (Patron Saint of Peru, Central and South America, the Philippines, florists, and gardeners)

Tvimanuor -- Old Icelandic Calendar (Double Month begins)

Umhlangaaa -- Swaziland (Reed Dance)

Valentino Memorial Service -- Hollywood Cathedral Museum, Hollywood Forever Cemetary, Los Angeles, CA, US (annually since 1927, a memorial service celebrating Rudolph Valentino on the anniversary of his death)

Vulcanalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (festival to the god of fire)

Birthdays Today:

Kobe Bryant, 1978
River Phoenix, 1970
Queen Noor of Jordan, 1951
Shelley Long, 1949
Barbara Eden, 1934
Mark Russel, 1932
Vera Miles, 1930
Gene Kelly, 1912
Louis XVI, 1754

Today in History:

On the feast of Vulcan, Roman god of fire, Mt. Vesuvius begins to rumble, 79
Visigoths storm Rome, 410
Edward I executes William Wallace, Scottish patriot, for high treason, 1305
French explorer Jacques Cartier lands near Quebec City in his third voyage to Canada, 1541
Rabbi Joseph Caro completes his commentary of Tur Code, 1542
The St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of Huguenots in Paris, 1572
The first one-way streets open in London, 1617
Steamship service begins on the Great Lakes, 1818
Great Britain abolishes slavery in the colonies, 700,000 slaves are freed, 1833
Automobile tire chain is patented, 1904
The World Council of Churches is formed, 1948
Lunar Orbiter I takes the first picture of Earth from the Moon's orbit, 1966
Bryan Allan, in a Gossamer Condor, completes the first man-powered flight of one mile, 1977
Soviet dancer Alexander Godunov defects to the US, 1979
Hans Tiedge, top counter-spy of West Germany, defects to East Germany, 1985
Hungary opens the Iron Curtain and allows thousands of East Germans through to West Germany, 1989
West Germany and East Germany announce that they will unite on Oct. 3, 1990

Monday, August 22, 2011


We've been dithering with the idea of cancelling the land line phone.

We can dither no longer, it's a luxury when you have a rather cheap mobile phone plan, and "disposable" even cheaper phones for the kids.

So the call to get rid of the land line gets made today.

Wow, the world has changed. It's something i would never have believed we would do.

Tough times require no dithering.

Today is:

America's Cup Day -- the first America's Cup was won this day in 1851 by the yacht America

Be an Angel Day -- Sponsored by Angel Heights Healing Center, encouraging people to be a blessing and perform an act of service for someone

Eat a Peach Day

Feast of the Queenship of Mary & Immaculate Heart of Mary -- Catholic Christians

Flag Day -- Russia

Hoodie Hoo Day, Southern Hemisphere -- go outside at noon and call "Hoodie Hoo" to chase away winter and call spring

Krisha Janmashtami -- Hindu (birth of Krishna)

National Heroes Day -- Philippines

National Pecan Torte Day

Rumpleskunkskin's Wedding -- Fairy Calendar (Goblin celebration)

St. Symphorian's Day

Tooth Fairy Day -- also noted on Feb. 28 on some websites, but it's okay to celebrate both days

Birthdays Today:

Cindy Williams, 1947
Valerie Harper, 1940
Carl Yastrzemski, 1939
Norman Schwarzkopf, 1934
Ray Bradbury, 1920
John Lee Hooker, 1917
George Herriman, 1880
Dorothy Parker, 1893
Claude Debussy, 1862
Samuel Pierpont Langley, 1834
Virginia Clemm Poe, 1822
St. Anthony of Padua, 1195

Today in History:

St. Columba reports seeing a monster in Loch Ness, 565
The Battle of Bosworth Field, in which King Richard III is killed and his forces defeated by Henry VII, 1485
Madras, India (now called Chennai) is founded by the British East India company on land purchased from the local Nayak rulers, 1639
Jacob Barsimon, the first Jewish immigrant to what would become US territory, arrives in New Amsterdam/Manhattan, 1654
The Newport, RI newspaper, Mercury, becomes the first in the US to hire a female editor, Ann Franklin, 1762
Austria launches pilotless balloons against the Italian city of Venice, thus staging the first air raid in history, 1849
Gold discovered in Australia, 1851
12 nations sign the First Geneva Convention and the Red Cross is formed, 1864
William Shepphard patents the first liquid soap, 1885
Founding of the Cadillac Motor Company, 1902
President Theodore Roosevelt becomes the first US chief executive to ride in an automobile, 1902
The first Victor Victrola is manufactured, 1906
The Mona Lisa is stolen, 1911 (recovered 2 years later)
Althea Gibson becomes the first black competitor in international tennis, 1950
Pope Paul VI arrives in Bogota, Colombia, becoming the first pope to visit Latin America, 1968
Rhodesia is expelled by the IOC for its racist policies, 1972
The first ring of Neptune is discovered, 1989
A version of The Scream and Madonna, two paintings by Edvard Munch, are stolen at gunpoint from a museum in Oslo, Norway, 2004
The Storm botnet, a botnet created by the Storm Worm, sends out a record 57 million e-mails in one day, 2007

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Those 4AM Calls Are the Worst.

Miss Lizzie is desperately trying, despite a severe degenerative neck condition, to get all of her stuff out of her former apartment.

It is in a town over an hour's drive away.

Sometimes she spends so much time packing that she doesn't get back with a load until very late at night.

The other night, she couldn't make it home. The disk problem started causing muscle spasms in her hands, and she couldn't drive.

Thus the 4AM phone call to come get her.

Bigger Girl and i went down there, and with Miss Lizzie in the car, Bigger Girl drove her vehicle home, following me through the early-morning-truckers-flying-through-the-construction-zone traffic.

Got home in time to take Hazelnut for her morning walk, then it was time for shopping, taking the kittens to adoption day, and all the other stuff that just has to get tended.

Somehow i think it's going to take a truck and a couple of strong guys to get the job done.

Or, as i told her, if you can't get it all, at the end of the day, it's just stuff. She and Hazelnut are safe, that's what matters most.

Today is:

Consualia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (festival of Consus, god of grain and silos)

National Senior Citizen's Day -- US

National Spumoni Day (I don't think I've had really great spumoni since I went to Italy all those years ago -- nothing like getting things at the source.)

Ninoy Aquino Day -- Philippines

Poet's Day

Schuebermess Shepherd's Fair -- Luxembourg (a fair held each year since 1340; through Sept. 3)

St. Bernard Tolomei's Day (Patron Saint of Olive Growers)

St. Jane Frances de Chantal's Day

Youth Day/King Mohammed VI's Birthday -- Morocco

Anniversaries Today

Seminole Tribe of Native Americans is legally established and recognized, 1957
Hawai'i becomes the 50th US state, 1959

Birthdays Today

Ozma, Queen of Oz, year unconfirmed
Jackie DeShannon, 1944
Clarence Williams III, 1939
Kenny Rogers, 1938
Wilt Chamberlain, 1936
Shimon Peres, 1923
Friz Freleng, 1906
Count Basie, 1904
William Murdoch, 1754
Francis de Sales, 1567

Today in History

Minamoto Yoritomo becomes Seii Tai Shogun and therefore de facto ruler of Japan, 1192
Pueblo Indians capture Santa Fe from Spanish during the Pueblo Revolt, 1680
James Cook formally claims eastern Australia for Great Britain, naming it New South Wales, 1770
The Nat Turner slave revolt in Virginia leaves 55 dead, 1831
Mighty Casey (Dan Casey) is struck out! In a game against the N.Y. Giants, 1887
William S Burroghs patents the adding machine, 1888
Oldsmobile is incorporated as a division of General Motors Corp., 1897
Arthur Rose Eldred becomes the first Boy Scout to earn the rank of Eagle Scout, 1912
Physicist Harry K. Daghlian, Jr. is fatally irradiated in a criticality incident during an experiment with the Demon core at Los Alamos National Laboratory, 1945
James Anderson, Jr., posthumously receives the first Medal of Honor to be awarded to an African American U.S. Marine, 1968
Philippine opposition leader Benigno Aquino, Jr. is assassinated at the Manila International Airport, 1983
Carbon dioxide gas erupts from volcanic Lake Nyos in Cameroon, killing up to 1,800 people within a 20-kilometer range, 1986
Coup attempt against Mikhail Gorbachev collapses, 1991
The Red Cross announces the famine in Tajikistan and calls for international aid there and in Uzbekistan, 2001
Hurricane Dean becomes the first storm to make landfall as a Category 5 since Hurricane Andrew, 2007

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Singing the My Brake Pads Are Worn and My Checkbook is Empty Blues

The title says it all.

Thursday morning, into the shop went the van. Second vehicle to go in this month.

Took Sweetie to his boss' house to bring in the paper while boss is out of town.

Took Sweetie to work.

Went back home to walk Hazelnut and wash the dishes that always mysteriously grow in the sink overnight, even though i leave it empty.

Got the call. Brake pads, rotors, and something in the ABS system that can't be replaced without replacing the whole big part. Over $1,100.


Sweetie had Brother-in-Law, The Mouth, drop him at the shop after work while i went to get the kids from school.

It's official, we are now too poor to pay attention.

Today is:

Antique Marine Engine Exposition -- Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT, US (annual exposition of pre-WWII marine engines and models; through tomorrow)

Birth of the White Buffalo -- Lakota Native American rituals honoring the birth of the White Buffalo in 1994, signaling the return of the White Buffalo Woman (manifestation of the Star Goddess Wohpe), who gave them the sacred peace pipe

Boil Over Thursday -- Fairy Calendar (sometimes on Thursday, most often not)

Candlelight Vigil for Homeless Animals Day -- International

Father's Day -- Nepal

Feast of Asma -- Baha'i

Independence From USSR Day -- Estonia

Lemonade Day

Minnesota Renaissance Festival -- Shakopee, MN, US (weekends and Labor Day through Oct. 2)

Moon's Birthday -- Aztec Calendar (according to some websites, but i haven't confirmed it; if you want something to celebrate, this is as good as anything else)

National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day

National Homeless Animals Day

National Radio Day

Revolution of the King and People -- Morocco

Sandcastle and Sculpture Day -- Nantucket, MA, US

St. Bernard of Clairvaux's Day (Patron of bees, beekeepers, candle makers, Gibralter)

St. Stephen's Festival -- Budapest, Hungary

The World's Greatest Carrot Festival -- Bradford, Ontario, Canada

Thoth orders the healing of the Eye of Horus -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Virtual Worlds Day -- internet generated, as well it should be

World Peace Festival -- Berlin, Germany (through the 27th)

Birthdays Today:

Al Roker, 1954
Connie Chung, 1946
Jacqueline Susann, 1921
Edgar Guest, 1881
H.P. Lovecraft, 1880
Benjamin Harrison, 1833
Bernardo O'Higgins, 1776

Today in History:

Hungary is established as a kingdom by Stephen I, 1000
The Dutch bring the first African slaves to the colony of Jamestown, VA, 1619
The Spanish establish the presidio that will be the town of Tuscon, Arizona, 1775
The Lewis and Clark "Corps of Discovery", exploring the Louisiana Purchase, suffers its only death when sergeant Charles Floyd dies, apparently from acute appendicitis 1804
Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" debuts in Moscow, 1882
Rotary Dial telephone is patented, 1896
The Big Blowup, a huge fire in the Northwestern US, burns 3 million acres, 1910
Adolphe Pegoud makes the first parachute jump from an airplane, 1913
Stainless steel is first cast, 1913
WJM,8Mk, Detroit, becomes the first commercial radio station to start daily broadcasting, 1920
UK becomes the first to use radar, 1940
Plutonium's weight determined, 1942
Launch of Voyager 2, 1977
George and Joy Adamson, the Born Free conservationists, are gunned down by poachers, 1989
The Oslo Peace Accords are signed in Norway, 1993
The Supreme Court of Canada rules that Quebec may not secede from Canada without federal government approval, 1998

Friday, August 19, 2011

Hand to the Plow

Hazelnut has fleas. And tape worm.

She has never been to a vet as far as we know, so i've made an appointment.

She needs crate training as well as house training, and a good puppy obedience course wouldn't hurt.

This, my friends, is why i have never had a dog. Knowing my limits, monetary and time wise, i knew i couldn't provide all that a dog needs. Not and keep up with all the other things i have on my plate.

Yet here i am having to help a sweet young lady with no where else to go do all these things.

My hand is to the plow, i will not look back. It does confirm what i knew, however; that i am cut out to play with your dog, but not be responsible for one of my own.

Today is:

Buhe -- Ethiopian Orthodox Church (Christian remembrance of the Transfiguration.)

Independence Day -- Afghanistan

Hanawa Bayashi -- Kazuno City, Japan (parades and music in the merchant's quarter, through tomorrow)

Helsinki Festival -- Helsinki, Finland (through Sept. 4; Finland's largest arts festival)

Hot & Spicy Food Day

Linwood National Pickle Festival -- Linwood, MI, US (through the 21st)

Manuel Luis Quezon Day -- Quezon City, Philippines

Muddy Frogwater Country Classic Festival -- Yantis Park, Milton-Freewater, OR, US (lots of family fun, including the square dancing, firefighters' water fight, and lots of country cooking and BBQ; through the 21st)

National Hug Your Boss Day (Be careful with this one!)

Northeastern Wisconsin Antique Power and Machinery Show and Thresheree -- Sturgeon Bay, WI (continuous display of operating antique machinery and lots of fun; through the 21st)

National Aviation Day -- US

National Men's Grooming Day -- US (sponsored by American Crew, participating salons and barbershops host a day of grooming events for men)

Potato Day

Saviour's Transfiguration Day -- Russian Orthodox and Gregorian Orthodox Churches, popularly known as the Apples Feast

St. John Eudes' Day

St. Sebald's Day (a/k/a Sebaldus) (Patron Saint against Freezing)

Vinalia Rustica -- Ancient Roman Calendar (Festival of Ripening Grapes)

Watch the Pot Wednesday -- Fairy Calendar (sometimes actually occurs on a Wednesday, more often not)

World Humanitarian Day

Birthdays Today:

Snuffleupagus (year unconfirmed)
LeAnn Womack, 1966
John Stamos, 1963
Adam Arkin, 1956
Mary Matlin, 1953
Jonathan Frakes, 1952
John Deacon, 1951
Tipper Gore, 1948
Bill Clinton, 1946
Jack Canfield, 1944
Jill St. John, 1940
Diana Muldaur, 1938
Willie Shoemaker, 1931
Don Ho, 1930
Gene Roddenberry, 1921
Malcolm Forbes, 1919
Jimmy Rowles, 1918
Ring Lardner, Jr., 1915
Philo T. Farnsworth, 1906 (forgotten inventor of television)
Ogden Nash, 1902
Coco Chanel, 1883
George Bellows, 1882
Orville Wright, 1881
John Dryden, 1631

Today in History:

The Roman Senate is compelled to elect Octavian, later Augustus Caesar, Consul, BC43
Augustus Caesar dies, 14
Crusaders defeat the Saracens in the Battle of Ascalon, 1099
Mary Queen of Scots arrives in Leith to assume the throne, 1561
Five people are executed for witchcraft in Salem, Mass., 1692
Presentation of Jacque Daguerre's new photographic process to the French Academy of Sciences, 1839
The New York Herald reports the discovery of gold in California, 1849
The first All-American Soap Box Derby is held in Dayton, Ohio, 1934
Hurricane Dianne kills 200 and does about $1 Billion in damage, 1955
Leonard Bernstein conducts his final concert, ending with Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, 1990
Several hundred East Germans cross the frontier between Hungary and Austria during the Pan-European Picnic, part of the events which began the process of the Fall of the Berlin Wall, 1989
A series of strong storms lashes Southern Ontario spawning several tornadoes as well as creating extreme flash flooding within the city of Toronto and its surrounding communities, 2005

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Miss Lizzie is here.

She has brought Hazelnut, part pit bull terrier, part chocolate lab, all personality.

The cats are not amused.

Badlands Blackie has volubly voiced his disapproval, more than once.

Hope has simply sat in a chair and hissed.

Kida, Little Girlie, and Horizon are using avoidance as their technique for dealing with it In fact, i haven't seen Horizon come out from under the bed for hours.

The kittens want to get a bit closer, but she is so playful that she jumps at them and scares them.

She is not consistently house trained, so we are frequently cleaning accidents.

She loves to nip and mouth at things, which is natural, she is a baby. Babies put everything in their mouths.

We have had to draw the line at her attempts to eat Little Girl's socks and kitten chow.

No, we are not sure how long they will be here, but my guess, considering Miss Lizzie's situation, is indefinitely.

Early morning constitutionals, here i come.

Today is:

Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival -- Bucyrus, OH, US (through the 20th; food and fun celebration of German heritage)

Bad Poetry Day -- get back at your high school English teacher for making you read all that "good" poetry; get together with friends, write some truly awful stuff, and mail it to him/her!

Kentucky State Fair and World's Championship Horse Show -- Louisville, KY, US (through the 28th)

Long Tan Day a/k/a Vietnam Veterans Day -- Australia

Mail Order Catalog Day -- the first one was published by Montgomery Ward this day in 1872, and was only one page (Do yourself a favor and opt out of the doggone things, save a few trees: )

Little League World Series 2011 -- South Williamsport, PA, US (through the 28th)

National Ice Cream Pie Day

National Science Day -- Thailand

Soft Serve Ice Cream Day

Soldiers' Reunion Celebration -- Newton, NC, US (the oldest patriotic event of its kind in the US, honoring all veterans)

St. Agapitus' Day

St. Helena's Day (Patron Saint of Archaeologists)

Sour Herring Premiere -- Sweden (by law, the year's supply of sour herring may begin to be sold today)

Toge-Pogling Season begins -- Fairy Calendar (Toges are normally pogled in groups of five or six, depending upon the size and strength of the individual Poge)

Birthdays Today:

Malcolm-Jamal Warner, 1970
Patrick Swayze, 1952
Elayne Boosler, 1952
Martin Mull, 1943
Robert Redford, 1936
Roman Polanski, 1933
Rosalynn Carter, 1927
Shelley Winters, 1920
Greta Garbo, 1905
Max Factor, 1904
Meriwether Lewis, 1774
Virginia Dare, 1587 (first English child born in the Americas)

Today in History:

Founding of the oldest known Roman temple to Venus, BC293
Rome is occupied and plundered by Visigoths under King Alarik I, 410
Death of Genghis Khan (fell from his horse), 1227
A Portuguese ship drifts ashore in the Japanese province of Higo, 1541
The Boston, Massachusetts Evening Post begins publishing, 1735
Eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, 1834
Pierre Janssan discovers helium, 1868
German engineer Karl Jatho allegedly flies his self-made, motored gliding airplane four months before the first flight of the Wright Brothers, 1903.
Mayor of Tokyo Yukio Ozaki presents Washington, D.C. with 2,000 cherry trees, which President Taft decides to plant near the Potomac River, 1909
A Great Fire in Thessaloniki, Greece destroys 32% of the city leaving 70,000 individuals homeless, 1917
19th US Amendment ratified (gives women the vote), 1920
Premier of The Wizard of Oz, 1939
The first commercially produced oral contraceptives are marketed, 1960
James Meredith becomes the first black person to graduate from the University of Mississippi, 1963
Steve Biko is arrested at a police roadblock under the Terrorism Act No 83 of 1967 in King William's Town, South Africa. He would later die of the injuries sustained during this arrest bringing attention to South Africa's apartheid policies, 1977
Massive power blackout hits the Indonesian island of Java, affecting almost 100 million people, 2005

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

It's Official

It really is. Thanks to The Merry, i am now the proud adoptive parent of the word diloricate.

Yes, it really is a word. It means to rip open a sewn piece of clothing. An example of its use would be, "Yesterday my son managed to diloricate his new school pants when he wore them to the creek."

Please note that this did not really happen, for if it did i might have to seriously encumber such future activities.

Encumber, another good old word that isn't used often enough.

If you want to adopt a rarely used word, give it new life, check out the site

Today is:

#2 Pencil Day -- internet generated, but since a pencil can draw a line 35 miles long, write under water, in zero gravity, or upside down, what's not to celebrate!

Artists in the Park Day -- Cate Park, Wolfeboro, NH, US (juried exhibit and sale, 10AM-5PM, rain or shine)

Day of Rituals in the Temples of Ra, Horus, and Osiris -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Festival of Diana -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Independence Day -- Gabon; Indonesia

Meaning of "Is" Day -- thank you, Clinton!

National Medical Dosimetrists' Day (medical radiation safety experts)

National Thrift Shop Day -- no history on it, probably started by a thrift store having a summer sale; still a good idea

National Vanilla Custard Day

Odin's Ordeal begins -- Ancient Norse Calendar, through the 25th

Portunalia -- Roman Empire (god of locks, keys, ports, and harbors)

Prekmurje Union Day -- Slovenia

San Martin Day, Argentina

St. Hyacinth's Day (Patron Saint of Lithuania)

Birthdays Today:

Sean Penn, 1960
Robert DeNiro, 1943
Maureen O'Hara, 1920
Mae West, 1892
charles I, last emperor of Austria-Hungary, 1887
Samuel Goldwyn, 1882
Davy Crockett, 1786

Today in History:

The Peace of Bergerac gives political rights to the Huguenots, 1577
John White returns to Roanoke, Virginia, to find no trace of the colonists he had left there 3 years earlier, 1590
Robert Fulton's steamboat Clermont begins its first trip up the Hudson River, 1807
Solymon Merrick patents the wrench, 1835
The first bank in Hawai'i opens, 1858
Patent granted for an electric self starter for automobiles, 1891
Pike Place Market, the longest continuously-running public farmers market in the US, opens in Seattle, 1907
Fantasmagorie by Émile Cohl, the first animated cartoon, is shown in Paris, 1908
First meeting of Narcotics Anonymous in Southern California, 1953
Quake Lake is formed by the magnitude 7.5 1959 Yellowstone earthquake near Hebgen Lake in Montana, 1958
East German border guards kill 18-year-old Peter Fechter as he attempts to cross the Berlin Wall into West Berlin becoming one of the first victims of the wall, 1962
Category 5 Hurricane Camille hits the Mississippi coast, killing 248 people and causing $1.5 billion in damage, 1969
Venera 7 launched. It will later become the first spacecraft to successfully transmit data from the surface of another planet (Venus), 1970
Double Eagle II becomes first balloon to cross the Atlantic Ocean when it lands in Miserey near Paris, 137 hours after leaving Presque Isle, Maine, 1978
The first Compact Discs are released to the public in Germany, 1982
The first forced evacuation of settlers, as part of the Israel unilateral disengagement plan, starts, 2005

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Oh, By the Way

"Oh, Mom, could Miss Lizzie come live here?" Bigger Girl had just come in from her Sunday evening Church work.

Miss Lizzie from the church where you work Sunday evenings? The one who had a baby she allowed to be adopted a few months ago?

"Yes. She is living with a new boyfriend, but he beats her up so he's in jail right now. And he spent the money for the electric bill on crack, so the electricity is going to be turned off tomorrow and she wants to leave because she doesn't know when he will get out of jail and she wants to be gone when he does."

Is she beginning to understand some of the consequences of the choices she is making with her life?

"Yes, and she has a job and a car, but no cell phone because hers got stolen, and I gave her our phone number and can she come live here? I'll let her stay in my room."

If she agrees to a few house rules, and continues to try to work and make her life better, yes.

"Oh, thank you, Mom. By the way, she also has a puppy."


"You promised! And besides, the foster kittens should get used to a dog, it makes them more adoptable!"


"Well, she might not call, she had a couple of other people at church offering, too."

For the record, she didn't call, but if she does, watch out cats, you will meet your match.


A joke for Joe Miller's Joke Day, #99 from the book published in his name after his death in 1738:

A Lady's Age happening to be questioned, she affirmed she was but Forty, and called upon a Gentleman that was in Company for his Opinion; Cousin, said she, do you believe I am in the Right, when I say I am but Forty? I ought not to dispute it, Madam, reply'd he, for I have heard you say so these ten Years.

Today is:

Baba Au Rhum Day -- of course, on rum day, bake some bread with the stuff!

Bratwurst Day

Children's Day -- Paraguay

Daimonji Bonfire -- Mt. Nyoigadake, Kyoto, Japan (spectacular bonfires in the shapes of word pictures on the mountains surrounding the city)

Elvis Presley Day

Festival of the Minstrels -- Tutbury Castle, UK (middle ages)

Gozan no Okuribi -- Kyoto, Japan (a/k/a Daimonji, culmination of the O-Bon Festival)

Harmonic Convergence Day -- modern followers of Maya and Aztec calendars

Independence Day -- Cyprus

Joe Miller's Joke Day

Madonna del Voto Day -- Siena, Italy (a/k/a Palio dell'Assunta, 2nd of the traditional yearly horse races)

National Airborne Day -- US (honors all Airborne Military)

National Tell a Joke Day -- seems internet generated, probably because of Joe Miller

National Rum Day

Restoration of the Republic -- Dominican Republic

Roller Coaster Day

St. Roch's Day (patron of those with plague)

St. Stephen of Hungary Day (Patron Saint of Hungary)

World's Fair of Money -- Chicago, IL, US (numismatist convention, the greaest money show on earth)

Xicolatada -- Palau-de-Cerdagne, France (hot chocolate festival)*

Youth Day -- Spain

Birthdays Today:

Timothy Hutton, 1960
Angela Bassett, 1958
Madonna, 1958
James Cameron, 1954
Kathie Lee Gifford, 1953
Leslie Ann Warren, 1946
Eydie Gorme, 1932
Frank Gifford, 1930
Ann Blyth, 1928
Fess Parker, 1925
Menachem Begin, 1913
George Meany, 1894
T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia), 1888
Hongxi Emperor of China, 1378

Today in History:

Henry VIII defeats the French at the Battle of Guinegate/Battle of the Spurs, forcing the French to retreat, 1513
Jack Broughton formulates the earliest code of rules for boxing, 1743
Chang and Eng Bunker, the original "Siamese" twins, arrive in Boston to be exhibited, 1829
U.S. President James Buchanan inaugurates the new transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, 1858
Arica, Peru (now Chile) is devastated by a tsunami which followed a magnitude 8.5 earthquake, 1868
Gold is discovered in the Klondike, at Bonanza Creek, 1896
Edwin Prescott patents the roller coaster, 1898
In Valparaiso, Chile, an 8.6 earthquake followed by fire destroys the city and kills 20,000, 1906
The first color sound cartoon, called Fiddlesticks, is made by Ub Iwerks, 1930
Democrats nominate Adlai E. Stevenson as presidential candidate, 1956
Joseph Kittinger parachutes from a balloon over New Mexico at 102,800 feet (31,300 m), setting three records that still stand today: High-altitude jump, free-fall, and highest speed by a human without an aircraft, 1960
A solar flare from the Sun creates a geomagnetic storm that affects micro chips, leading to a halt of all trading on Toronto's stock market, 1989

*Yes, they celebrate a hot chocolate festival in the summer. It all started when the 15th of August was a feast day on which the locals always drank a bit much, and the chocolatier of the town claimed his brew was a good remedy the day after. The original festival on the 15th has ceased, but the hot chocolate is brewed to this day, served at 11am promptly

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Point Is?

"Hey, Mom, can Festus and me drive over to his house to get his bathing suit?" #2 Son emerged from his lair to ask this most unelegant and ungrammatical question.

Son, doesn't he live just a couple of blocks from here?

"Yeah, but it might rain, so we want to drive."

Um, you're driving in order to stay dry to go get a swimsuit so you can get wet?


"Mom, it's not supposed to make sense," Little Girl chimed in.

Thank you for enlightening me.

Today is:

Armed Forces Day -- Poland

Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary -- Catholic Christian Holy Day of Obligation
Related Observances
Dormition of the Theotokos -- Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, and Eastern Catholic Christian
Ferragosto -- Italy (During the Roman Empire, a festival to Diana and a fertility and ripening celebration)
Mother's Day -- Antwerp; Costa Rica
National Acadians Day -- Acadians
Virgin of Candelaria, patron of the Canary Islands -- Tenrife, Spain
Irmandade da Nossa Senhora da Boa Morte Fiesta -- Bahia, Brazil (Festival of the Order of Our Lady of the Good Death)
Festival of the Outremeuse -- Liege, Belgium
Public Holiday -- Austria; Belgium; Benin; Bosnia; Burundi; Cameroon; Chile; Colombia; Côte d'Ivoire; Croatia; Cyprus; France; Germany; Greece; Guatemala; Hungary; Italy; Lebanon; Liechtenstein; Lituania; Luxembourg; Macedonia; Malta; Mauritius; Paraguay; Poland; Portugal; Romania; Senegal; Seychelles; Slovenia; Spain; Switzerland; Togo; Vanuatu

Best Friends Day

Bon Festival -- Japan (biggest day of the festival)

Chauvin Day -- observed on Napoleon's birthday because his is unknown, the day is named for Nicholas Chauvin, whose blind devotion to Napoleon was immortalized in his name's use for absurdly intense attachments to any cause

Constitution Day -- Equatorial Guinea

Day of Hearts -- Amsterdam and Haarlem, Holland (originally a cross dressing festival, all men dressed as women, and women as men; revived in recent years on the 3rd weekend of August, but the 3rd Monday was the original celebration)

Eleusinian Mysteries -- Ancient Greek Calendar (through the 18th, dates approximate)

Festival of Vesta -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Fool's Dance -- Japan (part of the Awa Dance Festival)

Independence Day -- India; Republic of the Congo (Brazzaville)

India Independence Day Parade -- Devon Avenue, Rogers Park, Chicago, IL, US (yes, a Celebration of Indian and American Democracy; anything for a party, even another country's Independence Day, right?)

Liberation Day -- both Koreas
Gwangbokjeol -- South Korea
Jogukhaebangui nal -- North Korea

Maras Diena -- Ancient Latvian Calendar (celebration of the goddess Mara, later associated with Mary)

National Day -- Lichtenstein

National Failures Day (May I suggest a book called "Fail Better", a small quotations book about how failure is just the beginning.)

National Lemon Meringue Pie Day

National Relaxation Day -- yes!!!

Shoro Nagashi Nagasaki -- Nagasaki, Japan

Sproshinki -- Slavic Pagan Calendar (end of the hay harvest festival)

St. Limbania's Day

Tuva Republic Day -- Tos-Bulak fields south of Kyzuk, Tuva, Russia (celebration of the Tuva Republic, a Naadam festival of Mongolian wrestling, horse racing, and archery; held by the Tuva people, the closest genetic relatives to the North and South American Native Peoples)

V-J Day -- US observance

Wafaa El-Nil -- Egypt and Coptic Church (first day of Flooding of the Nile)

Watch-the-Pot Week begins -- Fairy Calendar

Yukon Discovery Day -- Canada

Birthdays Today:

Joe Jonas, 1989
Ben Affleck, 1972
Melinda Gates, 1964
Jimmy Webb, 1946
Linda Ellerbee, 1944
Mike Connors, 1925
Rose Marie, 1925
Huntz Hall, 1919
Oscar Romero, 1917
Julia Child, 1912
Elizabeth Bolden, American Supercentenarian, 1890 (d. 2006)
Ethel Barrymore, 1879
E. Nesbit, 1858
Sir Walter Scott, 1771
Napoleon Bonaparte, 1769

Today in History:

Battle of Roncevaux Pass, the Basques defeat Charles the Great (Charlemagne) and Roland is killed, 778
Macbeth defeats his cousin and rival King Duncan I, who is killed in the battle, and becomes king of Scotland, 1040
Battle of Lumphanan, in which King Macbeth is killed by the forces of Mael Coluim MacDonnchada, 1057
The cave city of Vardzia is consecrated by Queen Tamar of Georgia, 1185
The foundation stone of Cologne Cathedral, built to house the relics of
the Three Wise Men, is laid, 1248*
The "Mainz Psalter" is completed, the earliest dated book, 1457
Founding of Panama City, 1519
Jesuit priest St. Francis Xaverius land in Kagoshima, Japan, 1549
Joseph Haydn departs England, never to return, 1795
Country of Liberia is founded by freed American former slaves, 1824
Tivoli Gardens, one of the oldest still intact amusement parks in the world, opens in Copenhagen, Denmark, 1842
The Cathedral of Our Lady of Peace in Honolulu, Hawai'i, is dedicated; it is the oldest continuously used Roman Catholic Cathedral in the US, 1843
San Sebastian Church in Manila, the first all-steel church in Asia, is officially inaugurated and blessed, 1891
A male servant of American architect Frank Lloyd Wright sets fire to the living quarters of the architect's Wisconsin home, 1914
The Panama Canal opens to traffic with the transit of the cargo ship Ancon, 1914
Will Rogers and Wiley Post are killed in a plane crash, 1935
The birth of stadium rock: The Beatles play Shae Stadium, 1965
President Richard Nixon completes the break from the gold standard, 1971
The "Wow! signal": The Big Ear, a radio telescope operated by Ohio State University as part of the SETI project, receives a radio signal from deep space, 1977
An 8.0-magnitude earthquake off the Pacific coast devastates Ica and various regions of Peru killing 514 and injuring 1,090, 2007

*Yes, we just noted the other day the date of completion in 1880!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

A Word Game, and Good News

A friend of mine on a discussion board website has started a thread called, This + That = Word Game.

She has begun a game where you take two or more words and treat them like a math equation and see what they "add up to."

Her examples were things like:

Yes + No = Maybe

pumpkins + brown leaves = autumn

wet + fizzy = soda pop

She wants to see what other people will come up with.

Well, i've been considering posting a few, except that right now my mood is toward things like

cat + food = dirty litter box

kitten + water + litter = mess

kitten + corner = no need to go over to the litter box.

These, i believe, are not at all in the spirit of what she has in mind.

They are, however, how i feel after spending so much time trying to find all the places the kittens have climbed into and "left their mark."

Oh, and great news, adoptions at the shelter are up, and our BlueBoy has found a forever home. The nice lady who took him had one of her cats run away recently. It was a stray brought in about a year ago, and was her 4-year-old cat's favorite friend, and the 4-year-old misses her so much. Apparently she is not only acting depressed about it, she is terrorizing the 13-year-old cat by trying to confine him to a bathroom at all times to make sure he can't go away, too!

So BlueBoy, who is friendly and loves playing with everyone, should keep the 4-year-old occupied and adapt well to being a best friend.

They also have a dog called "The Governor". He is a 5 pound Chihuahua who will not go outside without "politicking" his way through the house, making sure he meets and greets every cat and person in the house.

It sounds like Blue, after his rough start with being so ill for so long, is going to have a great life.

Which i will be celebrating for the foreseeable future as some of the calling cards still around are his.

Today is:

Anniversary of Snick-Snacker's Deerk Foot -- Fairy Calendar (fairies have a right foot, left foot, and a deerk, for which there is no human equivalent)

Assumption Eve -- France

Chung Yuan Festival -- China (Festival of Hungry Ghosts, the day souls of the dead are released from Purgatory to roam the Earth, with ceremonies held and offerings made to appease them; dates in some countries differ from China's)

Day of Peace between Horus and Set -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Festival for Fortuna Equestris -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Independence Day -- Pakistan

La Torta dei Fieschi -- Genoa, Italy

Liberty Tree Day -- Massachusetts, US

Mantoro Lantern Lighting -- Kasuga Taisha, Japan (through tomorrow; 3,000 lanterns light the shrine, and the main hall is open for visitors, with Bugaku and Kagura performed in the apple garden)

Melon Day -- Turkmenistan

National Creamsicle Day

National Navajo Code Talkers Day -- US

Palio Del Golfo -- La Speza, Italy (rowing contest)

Pramuka Day -- Indonesia (Scouting Day)

Resurrect Romance Week begins -- sponsored by

Rushbearing -- Forest Chapel, Cheshire, England (ancient tradtion of bringing new rushes, plaited in traditional weaves, to carpet the church and keep it warm)

St. Maximillian Kolbe's Day (patron against drug addictions)

St. Werenfrid's Day (patron against gout)

Weird Contest Week -- Ocean City, NJ, US (through the 19th; contests include salt water taffy sculpting and wet t-shirt throwing, among others)

Anniversary Today

V-J Day

Birthdays Today

Halle Berry, 1966
Earvin "Magic" Johnson, 1959
Gary Larson, 1950
Danielle, Steel, 1947
Susan Saint James, 1946
Steve Martin, 1945
Lynne Cheney, 1941
David Crosby, 1941
Alice Ghostley, 1926
Russell Baker, 1925
John Ringling North, 1903
Doc Holiday, 1851
H.C. Oersted, 1777
Emperor Hanazono of Japan, 1297

Today in History

The young Emperor Antoku and three sacred treasures are taken by Taira no Munemori and the Taira clan, fleeing to western Japan to escape pursuit by the Minamoto clan, 1183
Kublai Khan's invading fleet disappears in a a typhoon near Japan, 1281
Three years after Gutenberg, the oldest known exactly dated printed book is published, 1457
Queen Elizabeth I refuses sovereignty of the Netherlands, 1585
Great Britain annexes Tristan da Cunha (remotest occupied island), 1816
Second Seminole War ends, with the Seminoles forced from Florida to Oklahoma, 1842
Oregon Territory created, 1848
Magazine "Field and Stream" begins publication, 1873
Construction of Cologne Cathedral in Cologne, Germany, is completed, 1880
Japan issues its first patent, for rust-proof paint, 1885
A recording of English composer Arthur Sullivan's The Lost Chord, one of the first recordings of music ever made, is played during a press conference introducing Thomas Edison's phonograph in London, 1888
France begins requiring motor vehicle registration, 1893
The first claimed powered flight, by Gustave Whitehead in his Number 21, 1901
Mt. Rushmore project first proposed, 1925
United States Social Security Act passes, creating a government pension system for the retired, 1935
British troops are deployed in Northern Ireland, 1969
Longest game in softball history begins, as The Gager's Diner team takes on the Bend'n Elbow Tavern; the game was played to raise money for a new softball field in Monticello, NY, went to 365 innings over two days, and the Gagers won 491-467, 1976
Lech Walesa leads strikes at the Gdansk, Poland shipyards, 1980
Widescale power blackout in the northeast United States and Canada, 2003
As a sponsored event of the IOC, the 2010 Summer Youth Olympic Games, first ever Youth Olympics for athletes age 14-18, officially starts in Singapore, 2010

Saturday, August 13, 2011


Only if the week doesn't end with as big a to do list as it started with can you say TGIF.

Friday was the day to clean the cat shelter, bring Bigger Girl to the bank, go to the library with one overdue book (fine, 40 cents), meet the bug guy for the annual termite inspection, take #2 Son for a haircut, take Little Girl to get new shoes (she's grown a whole size!), and go to the annual torture called the Parent Orientation Meeting at the school. Plus laundry and cooking and trying to find all the spots the kittens have messed in behind the furniture (an ongoing ordeal).

While taking Sammy home between ironing and cooking dinner, he noted that his older brother, Gerry, left for college today. With the forthrightness you expect from an almost 10-year-old, he said, "I'm going to miss him, but I won't miss him taking the remote!"

Ah, to be able to tell the truth so bluntly. Someday, i will be able to do that again. You have to be under 12 or over 75 to really get away with it.

Today is:

Anniversary of Snick-Snacker's Right Foot -- Fairy Calendar

Blame Somebody Else Day -- begun by Anne Moeller of Clio, MI, US, who blamed being late for work on this day in 1982 on her alarm not going off, and spent the rest of the day spreading blame; i wouldn't suggest it, though, it will only start a fight you are too tired to finish.

Bud Billiken Parade -- Chicago, IL, US (second largest parade in the US, begun in 1929)

Day of Battle between Horus and Set; Aset gains the Horns of Hathor -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Festival of Aventine Diana -- Roman Empire

Festival of Xocotl Huetzi -- Ancient Aztec Calendar (first fruits of harvest festival, through Sept. 1)

Full Sturgeon Moon a/k/a Full Red Moon, Green Corn Moon, and Grain Moon

Hercules Victori -- Roman Empire

Independence Day -- Central African Republic

International Federation of Library Associations Annual Conference -- through the 18th

International Left-Hander's Day

International Tango Festival and World Championship -- Buenos Aires, Argentina (through the 31st)

Lao Issara -- Laos (Day of the Free Laos)

Mt. Hagan Cultural Show -- Mt. Hagan, Papua New Guinea (a bit touristy, but a nice overview of lifestyles of native clans; through tomorrow)

National Filet Mignon Day

National Garage Sale Day

Obon -- Shinto

Perseids Meteor Shower peaks

Raksha Bandhan -- Hindu (Celebration of the bonds between brothers and sisters -- i don't know about you, but in my house brothers and sisters celebrate their "bonds" by trying to put each other in them!)

Runic Half Month As begins (the gods)

Skinny Dipping Day -- funny t-shirt: I no longer skinny dip. I chunky dunk!

St. Cassian's Day (patron of teachers -- yes, they are back in school already, heaven help them; also of Mexico City, shorthand-writers, and parish clerks)

St. Concordia's day (patron of nannies)

St. Hippolytus' Day (patron of horses)

St. Pontian's Day

Vertumnalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (in honor of Vertumnus and Pomona)

Women's Day -- Tunisia

Birthdays Today

Danny Bonaduce, 1959
Midori Ito, 1969
Dan Fogelberg, 1951
Philippe Petit, 1949
Don Ho, 1930
Pat Harrington, Jr., 1929
Fidel Castro, 1926
George Shearing, 1919
Ben Hogan, 1912
Alfred Hitchcock, 1899
Bert Lahr, 1895
Annie Oakley, 1860

Today in History

The English army under King Henry V lands at the mouth of the Seine River, 1415
Tenochtitlan of the Aztecs is conquered by the Spanish, 1521
Tenbun Hokke Disturbance, in which Buddhist monks from Kyoto's Enryaku Temple set fire to 21 Nichiren temples throughout Kyoto, 1536
John Smith submits the story of Jamestown's first days for publication, 1608
Christiaan Huygens discovers the Martian south polar cap, 1642
Founding of Litchfield, CT, 1651
Marie Antoinette and other French royals are imprisoned by Revolutionaries, 1792
Nat Turner sees the solar eclipse which he interprets as a sign from heaven to begin his ill-fated slave rebellion, 1831
Earthquake in Peru and Ecuador kills 25,000, 1868
Ferdinand von Zeppelin patents his "Navigable Balloon", 1889
First production in the UK of stainless steel by Harry Brearley, 1913
Opha Mae Johnson is the first woman to enlist in the United States Marine Corps, 1918
Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW) is established as a public company in Germany, 1918
The first barbed wire fence that would become the Berlin Wall is erected, 1961
The Apollo 11 astronauts are released from a three-week quarantine to enjoy a ticker-tape parade in New York, 1969
Michael Phelps sets the Olympic record for most the gold medals won by an individual in Olympic history, 2008

Friday, August 12, 2011

Just When The Rush Was Supposed to End

"Oh, hey, mom, my check engine light came on and the car is bumping badly when it shifts gears." #1 Son was the bearer of this cheerful news on Sunday evening.

The past 8 weeks have been spent with me in the car two hours a day, ferrying Bigger Girl to and from work M-F. School doesn't start until next week. So this was going to be the week i got a bit of a break.

Yeah, right.

When i asked him when it started, he said, "Yesterday, on my way home from work."

Okay, i told him, we'll take it to the dealership in the morning, and you can use your Dad's car for a couple of days.

Plans were made to have Brother-in-Law, The Mouth, take Sweetie to and from work Monday morning and bring him home that night. We also determined that if it would take longer than a day, i'll take him to work each morning, and The Mouth can bring him home.

Monday morning came, as it always does, and it became a comedy of errors. We took the car to the dealership where i bought the car, but they no longer work on those cars at that dealership. Across town to the other, and i finally get it checked in.

By the time we got back to the house, #1 Son was in such a rush to get to work he forgot the work key and had to come back for it.

They didn't even bother to call me Monday.

Tuesday, after i had dropped Sweetie at work, done the weekly grocery run to Sam's and Wally World, and taken the three foster kittens to the vet for surgery, they called.

Six different engine codes came up with that check engine light. $700, none of it covered by the extended warranty we got. Also, they wouldn't be able to tell if the transmission was involved until after those things were fixed. They might be causing the rough shifting, or there might be an actual transmission problem.

Well, whatcha gonna do? They have you, so i authorized the repair.

There was no transmission involvement, and i'm not sure, since that would have been covered, if that is good or bed. Meanwhile, Wedenesday morning bright and early i had Sweetie run me up there to retrieve it before #1 Son had to go to work.

So after that i got to stay home and get some work done, right?

What world do you live it?

Wednesday was the start of public schools around here. Besides having to run Bigger Girl to her friend's house, young neighbor and friend Sammy showed up right on time for his usual afternoon ride home from school.

Who ever came up with the silly idea of Stay at Home Mom, anyway?

Anyone else want to form a mob and go tie him/her into the car for a couple of decades?

Today is:

Abbotsford International Airshow -- Abbotsford Airport, Abbotsford, BC, Canada (Canada's National Airshow, through the 14th)

Aloha Day -- unofficial celebration of the annexation of Hawai'i

Anniversary of Snick-Snacker's Left Foot -- Fairy Calendar

Awa Odori Festival -- Tokushima, Japan (through the 15th; one of Japan's largest dance festivals, Awa-dance is said to be a "fool's dance", and the saying is "It's a fool who dances and a fool who watches, so if both are fools, you may as well dance!")

Capitolfest -- Capitol Theatre, Rome, NY, US (showing rare silent and early films; through the 14th)

Edinburgh International Festival -- Edinburgh, Scotland (through Sept. 4)

Festival for Hercules Invictus -- Ancient Roman Calendar (through tomorrow; based on an even older Greek celebration of Heracles at the same time of year)

Ginza Holiday -- Midwest Buddhist Temple, Chicago, IL, US (Japanese Cultural Festival, with craftspeople from Japan demonstrating Edo, folk dancing, martial arts, drums, and other cultural displays as well as traditional foods served; through the 14th)

Grouse Day/Glorious Twelfth -- England; Scotland

Her Majesty the Queen's Birthday and National Mother's Day -- Thailand

International Youth Day

Julienne Fries Day

Kool-Aid Days -- Hastings, NE, US (festival in the town where Kool-Aid was invented; through the 14th)

Mae West Birthday Gala -- New York, NY, US (through the 17th, her birthday)

Middle Children's Day -- on some sites, listed as Aug. 14; either way, Middle Children deserve a special day!

National Huckleberry Festival -- Trout Creek, Montana, US (through the 14th)

National Toasted Almond Bar Day

Osirian Mysteries; Feast of the Lights of Isis -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Sewing Machine Day

St. Porcarius' Day

Tetnkaha Rendezvous -- Lake Benton, MN, US (travel back to the 1840's, including a muzzle-loader contest; through the 14th)

Vinyl Record Day

Zaraday a/k/a Zarathud's Day -- Discordianism

Birthdays Today:

Pete Sampras, 1971
Skip Caray, 1939
George Hamilton, 1939
William Goldman, 1931
Alvis Edgar “Buck” Owens, 1929
John Derek, 1926
Michael Kidd, 1915
Jane Wyatt, 1912
Cantinflas, 1911
Joe Besser, 1907
Alfred Lunt, 1892
Cecil B. DeMille, 1881
Christopher "Christy" Mathewson, 1880
Edith Hamilton, 1867
Katharine Lee Bates, 1859
"Diamond Jim" Brady, 1856
Robert Mills, 1781
Thomas Beckwith, 1753

Today in History:

The last ruler of the Egyptian Ptolemaic Dynasty, Cleopatra VII Philopater, allegedly commits suicide by asp bite, BC30
A conjunction of Venus and Jupiter occurs which may have been what the Bible calls the Star of Bethlehem, 3
Crusaders win the Battle of Ascalon, 1099
Juan Ponce de Leon arrives in Puerto Rico, 1508
Praying Indian John Alderman shoots and kills Metacomet, the Wampanoag war chief, ending King Philip's War, 1676
Isaac Singer is granted a patent for his sewing machine, the first one to be practical for home use, 1851
Asaph Hall discovers Deimos, 1877
The last quagga, a subspecies of zebra once plentiful in South Africa, dies at the Artis Magistra zoo in Amsterdam, 1883
Hawai'i is annexed by the US, 1898
William Somerset Maugham published "Of Human Bondage", 1915
Alleged date of the first Philadelphia Experiment test on United States Navy ship USS Eldridge, 1943
The Soviet Union detonates its first thermonuclear weapon, 1953
Echo I, the first communications satellite, is launched, 1960
South Africa is banned from the Olympic Games because of its racist policies, 1964
The first free flight of the Space Shuttle Enterprise, 1977
The IBM Personal Computer is released, 1981
Canada, Mexico, and the United States announce completion of negotiations for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), 1992
The Oscar class submarine K-141 Kursk of the Russian Navy explodes and sinks in the Barents Sea during a military exercise, 2000