Friday, March 10, 2006

I, of course, took it right apart.

Last night at my church council meeting, I heard a phrase I had never heard before. The council co-chair had put together a suggested schedule furthering our visioning work. As he handed it around he said, "This is here as a...

straw man
  1. A person who is set up as cover or a front for a questionable enterprise.
  2. An argument or opponent set up so as to be easily refuted or defeated.
  3. A bundle of straw made into the likeness of a man and often used as a scarecrow.
Dictionary definition of straw man
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2004, 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Girlfish Power!

One of the guppies is pregnant. Really, really pregnant. I thought she had some sort of rot thing, as she had this spot on her belly. Then I thought maybe it was just her coloration. Then, the spot began to blacken and her belly to bloat. This is apparently a "gravid spot".

(The female guppy) "can also store sperm for many months to use it later (called superfoetation). It is common for newly bought female guppies to give birth months after being obtained even when kept in a tank devoid of males."

Female guppies deliver their young live, rather than laying eggs. Unfortunately, they have a nasty habit of eating their

noun, singular and plural
1. Small fish, especially young, recently hatched fish.
2. The young of certain other animals.
3. Individuals, especially young or insignificant persons.
"fry." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 10 Mar. 2006.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

(whispering) TP

First it led to a fatal fight between men. Now even the gentler sex is getting into it. An AP article on the Washington Post website reads in part:

CHARLESTON, S.C. -- An argument over toilet paper overflowed into a fight, sending one motel maid to the hospital and another to jail.

The maids at the Siesta Motor Lodge in North Charleston armed themselves with a plunger and mop after accusing each other of taking toilet paper from each other's cleaning carts, North Charleston police said.

I had no idea toilet paper was turning into such a

hot potato
A problem that is so controversial or sensitive that those handling it risk unpleasant consequences.
"hot potato." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 09 Mar. 2006.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Going... going...

I did it. I can't believe it. I gave up mochas. That luscious, 10 grams of fat, creamy, hot, coffee-chocolate blend with which I started my days for oh so many years?


In its place is regular coffee, brand: Yuban, with non-dairy creamer and Dixie Crystals sugar. All the caffeine, a mere fraction of the enjoyment. Booo.

But-but-but-but-but... I have lost five pounds in two weeks with this dietary change alone. Combine that with my Law & Order exercise routine (though tonight it will be the Project Runway finale), and my eyes are on the prize.

My goal is within reach. I will achieve it. I will be

also callipygous
Having beautifully proportioned buttocks.
[From Greek kallipugos : kalli-, beautiful (from kallos, beauty) + pugē, buttocks.]
"callipygian." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 08 Mar. 2006.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Walking Writing stereotype

I wish I were kidding.

Poor handwriting. Synonyms: scribble, scratch, scrawl.
"cacography." WordNet 1.7.1. Princeton University, 2001. 08 Mar. 2006.

Monday, March 06, 2006


Inspired title, eh?

This was my view out the back of the house this morning. Fantastic. Our Brazilian exchange student thought he had landed on Mars.

Until I handed him a shovel. Then it was more like a

gu·lag (gū'läg)
  1. A network of forced labor camps in the former Soviet Union.
  2. A forced labor camp or prison, especially for political dissidents.
  3. A place or situation of great suffering and hardship, likened to the atmosphere in a prison system or a forced labor camp.
[Russian Gulag, from G(lavnoe) u(pravlenie ispravitel'no-trudovykh) lag(ereĭ), Chief Administration (of Correctional Labor) Camps.]

And they're boring

If the newsfeeds are to be believed, I am the only person in America who isn't fascinated by entertainment award shows. In fact, I find the idea that I should be entertained watching the entertainment industry give awards to itself repulsive.

1. Boastful, unwarranted pride in one's accomplishments or qualities.
2. Vain, ostentatious display.
[Middle English vein glory, from Old French vaine gloire, from Latin vāna glōria, empty pride : vāna, feminine of vānus, empty; + glōria, glory, pride.]
"vainglory." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 06 Mar. 2006.

The solid waste industry has more impact on my life, but they don't ask me to watch their awards. (Horrifying solid waste statistic from above link: In the United States in 1996, nearly 210 million tons—about 4.3 lb. (2 kg) per person daily (up from 2.7 lb./1.2 kg in 1960)—were collected and disposed of by municipalities.)

Sunday, March 05, 2006

I'm... dying...

Up until yesterday afternoon, I was fine. Then, I had that tickle in my throat, the one that warns of upcoming soreness. I slept poorly. When I woke up today, I was feverish, nauseated, exhusted, and very, very achy.

I think this is the garden variety flu, as I thankfully haven't handled any birds, ailing or otherwise. I have handled Jemima, though; perhaps I shall be the first victim of Hamster Flu. Death will be sweet release. I feel like I've been beaten with a

A timber measuring (slightly under) 2 inches by 4 inches in cross section.
"two-by-four." WordNet 1.7.1. Princeton University, 2001. 05 Mar. 2006.

"everytime I look up I just trip over things..."

Hundreds of years of human experiences have compiled and contributed to what I call "suburban culture." A culture of commonplace conveniences such as minivans that make carrying large objects and children easier, microwave ovens that will cook your food faster and remote controls that will enable you to burn less calories than ever before while watching TV.
Often I find myself regretably unaware of modern comforts, like baby carriers and MP3 players. But this afternoon, the concept learned was more basic than usual:
I discovered socks.
It's not that I hadn't worn socks when it was absolutely necessary, like to work-out or when wearing boots. But generally, if I don't need them, I don't wear them. I don't wear shoes if I don't have to either, so you would be correct to assume that household slippers are out of the question.
But my feet get so cold in this house with my husband, a member of the theromstat gestapo, as many husbands are.
So I walked over to my lonely sock drawer and pulled out a brand new pair of fraggle-looking socks that were a gift from someone who clearly didn't know me very well and put them on.
And you know what? My feet have been warm ever since.
And! I'm blissfully unaware of waxy, dirty, low-pile texture of our ghetto carpet and/or dog chew-toy debris that I'm probably stepping on.
I feel silly for not previously partaking in something so


1. Matter-of-fact; straightforward.
2. Lacking in imagination and spirit; dull.