Tuesday, October 31, 2006
My mind was wandering idly on the subject of houses and spouses. We loved our first house, we quicly grew weary of the second one, what will be the future of the third? It seems some people go through spouses this way. I hope we don't get sick of each other for a good long time (never).
Monday, October 30, 2006
Life could be worse. Much, much worse.
Western Grebes, returned from their summer breeding grounds, are fishing for their dinners.
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
(She's on the phone now, perfectly fine of course.)
Monday, October 23, 2006
Yet I am happy and contented and fulfilled.
Ki'il and the Scholar stopped by for a pleasant if short visit. They joined us in poking fun at the crooked shack that we are soon leaving. Ki'il has agreed to help me with the terminal cleaning here. We look forward to spending a lot more time with them. We always have such pleasant and interesting conversations and they are able to laugh at the world in much the same way that j. and I do.
A midnight trip to Wal-Mart yielded needed things for the house and a new sports bra which is helping to soothe my aching chest. Upon our arrival home, we packed up a large contribution for the garbage man.
Now I'm going to relax and enjoy some one-on-one with my Best Man. I missed him over the weekend.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Saturday, October 21, 2006
I passed a street fair selling beautiful raisin breads and old gadgets like stovetop espresso makers.
j. and I went to a community dinner where we had trouble finding our assigned table. On the way there, we passed the home of a patient of mine and poked around the back yard.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
The title might help prepare you for some of the callow objectification of women used by the mostly male main characters in this film. Does a one to ten rating system for face, body, and personality sum up a woman? Are supermodels really the "promise of a new tomorrow"?On the other hand, Gina has a brilliant soliloquy (delivered as advice to the Tommy), in which she reminds him in a wondrously colorful and expressive way that beauty is only skin deep. So maybe what we really have here is a commentary on lots of different ways to think about beautiful girls.
Most of the female characters in the film showed an acceptable amount of backbone. In spite of the rating system, I give the film good marks for representing a cross section of thought and behavior in its characters.
It was also very funny. Overall, an enjoyable flick.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
This was one of the authors for book club for October.
It is a historical novel that takes place mostly in England during World War I. There are a few underdeveloped characters in the novel. It seems to me that the pages devoted to Richard Mason and Judith Reavley are of little consequence to the story as a whole. I most note, though, that the book is part of a series, so it seems likely that the characters are dealt with more completely in other books.
The Joseph Reavley character, however, is well developed and his quest is pretty well developed. Again, the search for the Peacemaker is reasonably expected to be an ongoing one. Stories of intrigue and suspense are not my favorites, so the best part of this book in my opinion was the psychological struggle. After all, isn't that the most applicable part of any story. Joseph struggles to follow morality and truth, as best he knows them. Some of the time he is misguided by preconceptions, but in the end he comes to the truth.
When asked if God has abandoned the world, Joseph has the following notable answer:
"I don't know. There are times when I look at what's happening, young men crushed and dying, the land poisoned and turned to filth, corruption of what I used to trust utterly, and I'm not sure. But the things that Christ taught are still true, of that I'm absolutely certain. Meet me at the end of the world when we stand at the abyss, I'll tell Satan to his face just as certainly: Honor is still worth living or dying for; no matter how tired or hurt or frightened you are, face forward and seek the light, even if it's gone out and you can't remember where it was, keep going. It's always right to care. It's going to hurt like hell at times, you'll think it's beyond bearing, but if you let go of that then you have lost the purpose of existing at all."
There is much idealism in that answer, but also much truth.
This is one of those cases where if you don't laugh, you'll cry.
Monday, October 16, 2006
The rare tchotchke aside, our antiquing journeys mainly
amounted to wishful foraging, in the spirit of a more roomy and prosperous
someday we somehow never really articulated.-- Jacquelyn Mitchard, The
Of course, you also have arcades, like Funland, and your
typical tchotchke vendors, like Ryan's Gems and Junk.-- Jamie
Peck, "Rehoboth Beach", Newsday, May 18,
I'm going nuts with my mother's accumulation of tchotchkes -- it's bad enough she never parted with one she got
as a gift -- but why did she have to buy more?-- "Artifacts of Life", Newsday, December 9, 1996
Tchotchke is from Yiddish tshatshke, "trinket," ultimately of Slavic origin. It is also spelled tsatske.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Friday, October 13, 2006
Thursday, October 12, 2006
I thought I heard poor reviews of this movie, but we liked it. It's a little over two hours, I know that's long for some people, but it kept my attention. I don't really know anything about geishas, but the portrayal is stark and far different in many ways from the image we have of beautiful, talented, alluring women. Here are some major images that were altered in my mind.
Misconception #1- a career choice
Geishas were sold into slavery by their own families. If the geisha house didn't want them, they became prostitutes. If the geisha house decided they weren't good enough, they became servants.
Misconception #2- virgins
A maiko could not become a full geisha until she sold her virginity to the highest bidder. After that, she wasn't supposed to have sex again.
If the story is true, then it is full of all the ugliness that women can be to each other. Lies and backstabbing and setting each other up in a cruel competitive dance that could sometimes mean surviving or not for the geisha house. Sadly, is a dance that is put on for men. Yet this dynamic goes on every day in the school, the workplace, the home, and the public for many American women.
Although we have the freedom in this country to choose a life and a career, what are the factors that enslave American women? We are constantly reminded by ScienceWoman how hard it is for a woman to pursue a professional career in science, and of the fierce competition and bias toward men in the field. Although, I was lucky not to experience this, many women in the Christian circles that I grew up in are taught that their only acceptable role is wife and mother. That said, I believe Father censures Robin for her choice to go back to nursing school with a husband and child to care for. If you look at the media at all, you'll receive only a few images of powerful women. Most of the images there are the American version of geisha: how to make yourself up and play the patriarchal game in which women are pawns.
What about sex? We've got a corner on the virgin/whore dichotomy. It's popular wisdom that if a girl doesn't "put out" by the third date, a man will move on to someone else. So does that mean a girl has to have sex on the third date if she doesn't want to lose the guy? And of course she's supposed to sleep with her date to the high school prom. All the while, she should maintain the snowy white purity that will allow her to wear white on her wedding day.
On the other hand, consider the chastity movement. Girls (and presumably boys) are wearing bracelets inscribed with TLW (True Love Waits) to remind them to save it for the wedding night. This is considered "safe sex". Can't get any diseases if you don't "do it", right? No further sex ed necessary. Sorry, abstinence crowd, it doesn't work. What it does accomplish is, when she finally decides to do it in a moment of passion, she doesn't know what a condom is, much less to ask for one. Or maybe she'll just fool around. Oral sex isn't sex, right? Wrong.
Well, everyone knew we have this problem in America and it didn't have much to do with the movie. But that's what I'm alll about, saying what I think while I'm thinking it.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Here is the applesauce in progress. When it is liquedfied, I add brown sugar and cinnamon. I ended up with about eight quarts. j. ate some and I froze the remainder using our Foodsaver bag and seal system.
I wish you could smell it.
After that I was with Mother and Father visiting a summer camp where I used to work. Everyone was talking about a man who was pregnant. Then his wife suddenly dropped over dead. We went for a walk and came to a deserted housing community with a broken down aviary full of really scraggly looking birds.
Monday, October 09, 2006
I guess I was the big drinker in the bunch. I drank both my margarita and jc's. Then when the Scholar's parents got home, I had a glass of Merlot. Some of you will appreciate the humor in little old me who used to be a teetotaler drinking more than anyone else.
The Scholar is in nursing school, so we had some conversations about that. He is in the phase where they throw theory at you without explaining the practical purpose of it. Hopefully, I helped rather than muddying the waters more with my rambling. We could've stayed all night chit-chatting, but people have school and work, and so we scurried home about midnight. We hope to do it again soon. Only I'll be embarrassed by my simple food after the feast we got served up.
Sunday, October 08, 2006
Friday, October 06, 2006
Then there were some kind of war games with toy soldiers. I was taking it pretty seriously and my best friend from high school got pretty upset with me. Something underlying made the situation very tense.
Thursday, October 05, 2006
I went back to sleep.
I was trying to float down the creek at The Farm at flood stage. When I got about where the cable car used to be, there were fisherman in motorized craft. I returned to dry land to avoid them.
After that I was at BJU. I was wearing pants with a skirt over them. On my way to breakfast, I ran into Mary. She had her two year old little girl with her. There was a long wait at the cafeteria. Then I sat with Leigh and her friends. They ignored me completely. I wanted a salad, but the salad bar lady told me she had just put it out and it wasn't ready to eat yet.
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
After yoga class we had grilled cheese sandwiches on the new cast iron grill pan and watched "Like Water for Chocolate". Out of laziness, I will comment on it here. The English voiceovers were terrible, so we watched it in Spanish with English subtitles. It was much better that way. I disagree with the basic premise of the movie, which to me seemed to be that sexual passion is the ruling force in the world. I believe that love can conquer all, but that's different. Of course the movie is fanciful, so we must allow leeway. Literal fires start from sexual longing and fulfillment and in the end, a woman eats matches and burns down a whole rancho. I don't doubt that I may have missed the point. If someone else got it and wants to correct me, I'm all ears.
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
First of all, I have to ask myself why people want to have body-changing surgery. I have never harbored even the remotest desire to do such a thing. Of course, as a nurse, I know that the last thing you should ever do is let a surgeon cut you. But that's beside the point. Aside from body changes that I can affect myself through exercise and proper diet, I'm happy with the way I look. I'm not perfect, but I'm me.
What gives someone such poor self esteem that they risk their lives to change their bodies? Is it the way they've been treated by others? Unimaginable things happen in families. I know a woman whose father called her "flats" because she had very small breasts. Parents tell their children they are ugly and fat and stupid and bad. Based on this sort of treatment in the develomental years, how could a person come out with positive self-image?
Then we have popular culture. Big breasts are beautiful. Men will desire you. Wide noses are ugly. You might be mistaken for someone of another race, other than white that is. Aging is terrible. Wrinkles and crow's feet and gray hair are all signs of inferiority. Forget the wisdom that comes with years of experience. Do we have plastic surgery only because our society is so ageist, sexist, and racist? Who decides what beauty is? Advertisers? Hollywood?
I submit that beauty comes from within.
This will be our new home. No, not a boat, a house about two blocks from the harbor. The rent is similar and the house is much nicer than where we are. We've sort of wanted to try out living here for a while. We even entertained the idea of a houseboat for a while, but it didn't seem like a good idea with a piano, let alone children. So now we have our big chance. For the moment, that's a big chance to pack up all our earthly belongings again. I'm making the most of the excited energy I have now to get some of that done right away.
I'll keep you posted.
Monday, October 02, 2006
I went out to eat with Mother and Father. The menu looked much like a hospital menu: a piece of paper with four or five sections, each had one menu choice. I ordered in German and the waitress told me, also in German, that my choice wasn't available. She said they were out of the brown bread it came with. I asked if I could just have it with different bread. She said all they had was white sandwich bread and I told her that would be fine. The drinks came in glass bowls. Father had lager. Mother's meal came with a cheese selection, which she said she didn't want. I said I would look at it. About twenty different kinds of cheeses came out on a tray for our perusal.
Next thing I remember, we were in a hired car being driven to the waterfall. The driver said we would be able to drink from the waterfall for a dollar. I was thinking how nice it was to have a driver and be able to sit back and enjoy the trip.