Saturday, August 27, 2005

Quibbling

quib·ble (kwi-bul)
intr.v. quib·bled, quib·bling, quib·bles

1. To evade the truth or importance of an issue by raising trivial distinctions and objections.
2. To find fault or criticize for petty reasons; cavil. as in:
http://tinyurl.com/3knbq

I'll make this quick

As my father ages, it becomes increasingly difficult for him to keep up with my children's regular way of moving, best described as festinating. They fairly wind me, too, some days.

festinate
verb
To move swiftly.

Synonyms bolt, bucket, bustle, dart, dash, flash, fleet, flit, fly, haste, hasten, hurry, hustle, pelt, race, rocket, run, rush, sail, scoot, scour, shoot, speed, sprint, tear, trot, whirl, whisk, whiz, wing, zip, zoom. Informal hotfoot, rip. Slang barrel, highball. Chiefly British nip.

Side note: Googling images for "tired mom" nets you about a kablillion pics of moms just after delivery, with baby nuzzled up. Very sweet. However...

Unfortunately, some photographers don't believe in cropping before uploading, even when the action "there" is done. Whole lotta "Look at tired Mom AND HERE IS HER ENORMOUS CROTCH IN THE FOREGROUND!" going on.

Friday, August 26, 2005

This little baby can really move

We're looking to buy a vehicle, in this case a used truck to avoid delivery charges for larger items I buy about town. I detest the process of buying any vehicle. So many of the people involved in that industry tend to be

unctuous
adjective
1. Affectedly and self-servingly earnest: fulsome, sleek, smarmy.
2. Having the qualities of fat: adipose, fat, fatty, greasy, oily, oleaginous*.

*RD, did you snort at that one?

Thursday, August 25, 2005

since I looked it up

Anyone ever wonder how the phrase "buy the farm" came about?

as in

why don't you stop dying before you go and get it right
now you're selling off the house so you can buy the farm -Jets to Brazil


or

Sing the song or keep it inside
Bought the farm, but the farmer done died -Stone Temple Pilots


World Wide Words has many opinions about its origin, but I'll buy this one:

"...in an issue of American Speech in 1955:

Jet pilots say that when a jet crashes on a farm the farmer usually sues the government for damages done to his farm by the crash, and the amount demanded is always more than enough to pay off the mortgage and then buy the farm outright. Since this type of crash is nearly always fatal to the pilot, the pilot pays for the farm with his life..."

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Speaking of Methuselah

Methuselah
Large bottle used in Champagne and Burgundy equivalent to 8 standard bottles (6 litres, 1.58 US gal., 1.32 UK gal.).

Jéroboam
Large bottle used in France equivalent to 6 standard bottles (4.5 litres, 1.19 US gal., .99 UK gal.) in Bordeaux and 4 standard bottles (3 litres, 102 US fl. oz., 106.2 UK fl. oz.) in Champagne and Burgundy.

Rehoboam
Large bottle used in Champagne and Burgundy equivalent to 6 standard bottles (4.5 litres, 153 US fl. oz., 159.3 UK fl. oz.).

Salmanazar
Large bottle used in Champagne and Burgundy equivalent to 12 standard bottles (9 litres, 2.38 US gal, 1.98 UK gal).

Nebuchadnezzar
Largest bottle used in Champagne and Burgundy, equivalent to 20 standard bottles (15 litres, 3.96 US gal., 3.3 UK gal.).

Balthazar
Large bottle used in Champagne and Burgundy equivalent to 16 standard bottles (12 litres, 3.168 US gal., 2.64 UK gal.)

I have no idea when this will ever come in handy to know, but here it is anyway.

I feel like Methuselah

BELOIT COLLEGE'S CLASS OF 2007 MINDSET LIST

1. Ricky Nelson, Richard Burton, Samantha Smith, Laura Ashley, Orson Welles, Karen Ann Quinlan, Benigno Aquino, and the U.S. Football League have always been dead.
2. They are not familiar with the source of that “Giant Sucking Sound.”
3. Iraq has always been a problem.
4. “Ctrl + Alt + Del” is as basic as “ABC.”
5. Paul Newman has always made salad dressing.
6. Pete Rose has always been a gambler.
7. Bert and Ernie are old enough to be their parents.
8. An automatic is a weapon, not a transmission.
9. Russian leaders have always looked like leaders everyplace else.
10. The snail darter has never been endangered.
11. There has always been a screening test for AIDS.
12. Gas has always been unleaded
13. They never heard Howard Cosell call a game on ABC.
14. The United States has always had a Poet Laureate
15. Garrison Keillor has always been live on public radio and Lawrence Welk has always been dead on public television.
16. Their families drove SUVs without “being fuelish.”
17. There has always been some association between fried eggs and your brain.
18. They would never leave their calling card on someone’s desk.
19. They have never been able to find the “return” key.
20. Computers have always fit in their backpacks.
21. Datsuns have never been made.
22. They have never gotten excited over a telegram, a long distance call, or a fax.
23. The Osmonds are just talk show hosts.
24. Undergraduate college athletes have always been a part of the NBA and NFL draft.
25. They have always “grazed” for food.
26. Three-point shots from “downtown” have always been a part of basketball.
27. Test tube babies are now having their own babies.
28. Stores have always had scanners at the checkout.
29. The Army has always driven Humvees.
30. Adam and PC Junior computers had vanished from the market before this
generation went online.
31. The Statue of Liberty has always had a gleaming torch.
32. They have always had a PIN number.
33. Banana Republic has always been a store, not a puppet government in Latin America.
34. Car detailing has always been available
35. Directory assistance has never been free.
36. The Jaycees have always welcomed women as members
37. There has always been Lean Cuisine.
38. They have always been able to fly Virgin Atlantic.
39. There have never been dress codes in restaurants.
40. Doctors have always had to deal with “reasonable and customary fees” and patients have always had controls placed on the number of days they could stay in a hospital.
41. They have always been able to make photocopies at home.
42. Michael Eisner has always been in charge of Disney.
43. They have always been able to make phone calls from planes.
44. Yuppies are almost as old as hippies.
45. Rupert Murdoch has always been an American citizen.
46. Strawberry Fields has always been in New York.
47. Rock and Roll has always been a force for social good.
48. Killer bees have always been swarming in the U.S.
49. They have never seen a First Lady in a fur coat.
50. Don Imus has always been offending someone in his national audience.
© 2003 Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin.
Methuselah
(Old Testament) a patriarch (grandfather of Noah) who is said to have lived 969 years.
I've highlighted the ones that make me feel especially old and decrepit.

What's in a name?

A trip to DC for a private tour of the National Zoo's Panda House, that's what.

Details

Vote and win

or, better yet

Make the kids earn the family's vacation this year

Fine day for a bike ride!

Conservative U.S. evangelist Pat Robertson, who called for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, said on Wednesday he was misinterpreted and there were a number of ways to "take him out" including kidnapping.

"I said our special forces could take him out. Take him out could be a number of things including kidnapping," Robertson said on his "The 700 Club" television program. "There are a number of ways of taking out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted," Robertson added.

backpedal
verb
1. To move the pedals of a bicycle or similar vehicle backward, especially to apply a brake.
2. To move backward by taking short quick steps, as in boxing or football.
3. To retreat or withdraw from a position or attitude.

No Pat, no.


Again, I must apologize on behalf of "the wackos."
This time, it's a repeat offender, Pat Robertson. As you may have heard, Mr. Robertson has apparently issued a death warrant for Hugo Chavez. I'm sorry, I don't remember anything about "death fatwas" in the Bible, but I do recall: Exodus 20:13 and Matthew 5:21, amongst others.
I really wish he wouldn't get so much press, clearly he's lost his mind. (If only good organizations would get some attention.)
fat·u·ous
adj.

1. Vacuously, smugly, and unconsciously foolish.
2. Delusive; unreal: fatuous hopes.
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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Back to school they go...

The oldest heads back to school soon. I hate that. I like having him about.

But on a happy note, I'll be able to clear away some of the detritus of summer, which is satisfying. Fall has always felt like a fresh start to me.

detritus
noun
1. Loose fragments or grains that have been worn away from rock.
2. Disintegrated or eroded matter.
3. Accumulated material; debris.

Monday, August 22, 2005

What the...

Some quotes from a Post article about a fairly recent phenomenon: "reborn" babydolls made to look like likelife babies. Apparently these people actually treat them like real babies.

She is busy showing off her new baby. "See, my boy has been circumcised," she says to one woman and takes off the baby's bottoms to show her.

-snip-

Off in the corner a woman from England pushes her newest infant in a white and red stroller. Another woman keeps leaning into the stroller and using the outside of her hand to brush the baby's plump cheek. In a nearby chair, a burly guy cuddles a preemie in a blanket, waiting for his wife.

-snip-

To create the dolls, Kneisley uses pictures from hospital Web sites (which would explain the two babies with realistic-looking, freshly cut umbilical cords with the clips still attached), magazines and "my grandbabies."

These things are plentiful on eBay. The word for this is
creepy
adjective
1. Of or producing a sensation of uneasiness or fear, as of things crawling on one's skin.
2. Annoyingly unpleasant; repulsive.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

"Honey, tell the nice judge Mommy didn't mean to."

ORINDA, Calif. -- In the midst of a bitter divorce, Susan Polk says, she split for Montana, determined to get away from her abusive husband. "I didn't plan on coming back and killing him," she explains from behind a window in the county jail. But kill him she did _ stabbing a paring knife repeatedly into his body in a rage.
She claims she acted in self defense after he tried to stab her with the knife. Prosecutors call it the premeditated action of a violent, delusional woman. Polk, 47, has fired three attorneys and now plans to represent herself in her first-degree murder trial, set to begin Monday. One son is the prosecution's star witness, another her main defender.

-snip-

Susan tips her head down at the prospect of cross-examining her son. "We're just going to talk, that's all," she says. "I never planned to murder my husband. He knows that."

Fascinating article. He was her married, older shrink and they started an intimate relationship when she was 16 and he was 42. She is claiming she was abused, emotionally and physically, and that he came after her with the knife when she came to collect her things.

But cross-examining your own children about the death of their father at your hand? I think that may prove emotionally
cumbersome
adjective
1. Difficult to handle because of weight or bulk.
2. Troublesome or onerous.

A is for Amy who fell down the stairs...


I just bought my calendar for the upcoming year. Those familiar with my other blog will understand the choice perfectly.

black comedy
noun
Black comedy, also known as black humor, is a subgenre of comedy and satire where topics and events normally treated seriously – death, mass murder, sickness, madness, terror, drug abuse, et cetera – are treated in a humorous or satirical manner.