Saturday, November 12, 2005

Genderally Speaking

The oldest showed today for his first time. He came in third in his class of equitation, which was outstanding and right where we expected, considering (1) the two riders who came in first and second have been riding two years and one year longer respectively than he, and (2) he values speed and degree of difficulty over form.

Third place is a yellow ribbon.

A girl who was yet to show admired it and said, "That's the color of marigold flowers."

My son replied, "No, it's the color of the Corvette we saw on the way here."

Then he showed her how if you drop dust behind your back while standing with your feet apart, it kinda looks like you're pooping.

gender role
The pattern of masculine or feminine behavior of an individual that is defined by a particular culture and that is largely determined by a child's upbringing.
"gender role." The American Heritage Stedman's Medical Dictionary. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2002. 13 Nov. 2005.


Simply incogitable.

\In*cog"i*ta*ble\, a. [L. incogitabilis; pref. in- not + cogitabilis cogitable.] Not cogitable; inconceivable. --Sir T. More.


We used to live in a neighborhood where everyone was very much in each other's pockets. It could be nice, as the entire neighborhood would instantly respond to tragedy with quite pragmatic help. But it could also be vexsome, as petty tittle-tattle ran rampant.

Idle, often sensational and groundless talk about others. Synonyms: gossip, gossipry, hearsay, report, rumor, talebearing, tattle, word.
"tittle-tattle." Roget's II: The New Thesaurus, Third Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 1995. 12 Nov. 2005.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Always thinking

Some are always thinking, perhaps even cogitabund.

[fr. L. cogitabundus, thinking; fr. cogitare, to think]
archaic given to deep thought, having the appearance of being in deep meditation: pensive

Chain gang walking

I saw what had to be a preschool class out for a walk the other day. Approximately six children were in this sort of horizontal ladder made entirely of canvas strapping, with one child in between each set of rungs, and a guard - I mean a teacher - at each end.

It looked incredibly difficult for the children to walk, having to coordinate their gait with their classmates'. Most every child was looking down at his or her feet, and I saw several stumble. The adults didn't seem to be able to enjoy it either; they were kept busy chastising and reminding to "keep up with the group".

My preschool class used to take walks. We held hands.

A group of animals, prisoners, or slaves chained together in a line.
To fasten together in a coffle.
[Arabic qāfila, caravan, feminine active participle of qafala, to close, return.]
"coffle." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 11 Nov. 2005.

Thursday, November 10, 2005


My husband was flipping through the DirecTV channels a few days back while I sat next to him on the sofa, flipping through the newspaper. Barack Obama was on TV, on Comedy Central's The Daily Show. My husband and I, though we each identify with a different political party, both commented that we find him incredibly appealing as someone we'd like to know personally. He's intelligent, his smile is infectious, he speaks with consideration, and he just has that intangible "it". He strikes us as someone wonderful to be stuck next to on an airplane.

The ability to attract others through personal magnetism and charm.
"duende." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 10 Nov. 2005.

Feel that cold, frigid breeze...

It's cold here on the East Coast. Not only that, but it's breezy. That's makes it so much worse. We have 4 Arborvitaes in the front along the fence line and they are all dancing like crazy with this wind. There are gusts up to 35 mph! Our trees are holding their own against the wind, but they sure do look cold and tired.... like a blanket and some shelter would mean a lot to them.

Windblown: adj.,

1. Blown or dispersed by the wind

2. Growing or shaped in a manner governed by the prevailing winds

"windblown." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 10 Nov. 2005.

Do you think you'll live forever as well?

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This morning a saw an interview with a 58 year old woman who gave birth to twins last year. And the first thing I thought was "how

-Concerned chiefly or only with oneself
-being a usually repetitive sequence of nucleic acid that actively replicates within an organism but is not expressed phenotypically and serves no known function

She touts herself to be a world learned energy scholar and that she knew that 57 was her time to have children.
Uh huh.
It seems that if the energy of the universe wanted her to have children, she wouldn't have had to have in vitro fertilization using implanted donor eggs.
And wouldn't "energy" want those children to have a father in their lives?
And cesearan briths aren't exactly nature-intended.

To top it off, when her little girl was fussy on camera, a hispanic nanny quickly grabbed the baby and took her away from the interview area. At least that woman will still be alive in 20 years to see them graduate college.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Don't leave me this waaaaaay-ay-ay-ay

quotes from a BBCNews article:

Pop singer Michael Jackson is unlikely to ever want to live in the US again, his father has told an interviewer.

Joseph Jackson said his son, who has been based in Bahrain since being cleared of child abuse charges in June, will return only for work and visits.

Awww, that's sad. But why?

"He'll come back to visit, but not to stay, not to live" Mr Jackson told the Associated Press.

"They didn't treat him right here. I know if I was him, I wouldn't come back."

1. To give up residence in one's homeland.
2. To renounce allegiance to one's homeland.
"expatriate." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 10 Nov. 2005.

Yeah. Uh-huh. OK, bye.


The oldest has three pairs of riding boots. That seems excessive, but one pair is brown, and, while he can wear them to practice, his stables show in black. Another pair is essentially useless, because they are laced boots, and they need new laces, which I cannot seem to find in the proper length and thickness. The third pair is functional and the correct color.

What's wrong with the laces on the second pair? OK, you know those plastic thingamabobs? The doohickies on the ends that makes it possible to stick the laces through? Yes, well, those thingies are gone.

1. A tag or sheath, as of plastic, on the end of a lace, cord, or ribbon to facilitate its passing through eyelet holes.
2. A similar device used for an ornament.
"aglet." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 09 Nov. 2005.

Speaking of laces, you can buy the laces pictured and help raise money to find a cure for breast cancer.

Sign here

When my husband signs his name, he begins by writing the initial letter of his first name (who doesn't?). But then, he makes a sort of diagonal, fancy line that ends up acting as almost a base for the remaining letters. His is not the first signature I've seen executed in such a manner.

A flourish made after or below a signature, originally to prevent forgery.
[French paraphe, from Old French paraffe, abbreviated signature, from Medieval Latin paraphus]
"paraph." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 09 Nov. 2005.

Monday, November 07, 2005

"Yeah, my son sings hetero"

The oldest is hearing impaired. He has 90% hearing loss in one ear, which basically removes all depth perception (he can't tell where sound is coming from) and distorts how he hears his own voice. He wears a hearing aid for school, or he can't separate the teacher's voice out from the background noise. But when he comes home from school, he usually takes it off, or he tends to get audiological exhaustion.

So we're in the car on the way to karate tonight, and a song he likes comes on the radio. He begins to sing along. He loves music, so he's really belting it out. And hitting maybe every third note.

The simultaneous playing or singing of two or more versions of a melody.
"heterophony." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 08 Nov. 2005.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Who ya gonna call? Frobusters!

Possessing a large, well-developed, well-coiffed afro.
[portmanteau of afro + robust]

as in "Some members of the Jackson 5 were more frobust than others."