Anhydrous Wit

Are you pondering what I'm pondering?

Friday, August 29, 2014

I Have Lots of Sects

 (In case you didn't get the joke, say the title of this post aloud.)

I have boxed up most of my owl figurines, so I can take them to NM on my vacation this week and leave them in my mom's basement.*  I also packed most of my books, but I don't know if I'll have room in my car for everything.  (The bookcase looks so empty now!)

As I packed my owls, I noted that I had displayed them in groups of similar types.  I had grouped "eared" owls separately from those without feather tufts.  I have a group of yellow-painted, souvenir owls -- bells, toothpick holders, and salt/pepper shakers.  (I also have other salt/pepper shaker sets.)  I have about a half dozen seashell owls.  I have music boxes (including the one pictured).  I have ceramic owls, both painted and unpainted.  I have glass, clay, alabaster, wood, metal, and stone owls.  I have candle holders and candles (see below for my fifty-cent bargain).  I have stuffed owls (one was featured before).  I have plates.  I have bookmarks.  I have bookends (boy, do I have bookends!)  I have cooky jars and vases.  I have beer and liquor bottles with owls on the labels.  I have all-weather owls for outdoor display (another mentioned in an earlier post).  I have an owl whirligig (similar to this one).  I even have a wooden, cigar box (no match for it yet).

The moral of this story is that you need to keep me out of thrift stores, flea markets, and yard sales, or else I might end up filling the shelves all over again.  (The same goes for book sales and used bookstores.)

* Since it's likely I'll have to relocate (either for a new job or if I get fired), I figured that it would be a good idea to store my owls (and books) in my mom's basement until I know where I'm going to end up.  If I get a job somewhere else, I won't have to shlep all the boxes later.  If I'm fired and have to sponge off my mom for a while, then the boxes would end up in her basement anyway.  (The sad part is that this frees up absolutely no extra living space -- or even closet space -- in my apartment.)

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

In College, They'll Major in Doublespeak

A local, private school sponsors my public radio station.  The radio spot is full of blather but no content.  I can't recall it exactly, but here are words taken directly from the school's "Mission and Philosophy" web page.

... a challenging, comprehensive educational experience ... that promotes critical thinking and life-long learning ... we seek to foster in each student a strong moral foundation and a deep sense of social responsibility.

... a vital role in the increasing connectedness and globalization of the world.

... it is important to formulate an analysis based upon both quantitative and qualitative data. We must remain committed to providing our current parents with high-quality information that can help validate that they have made the right decision to enroll their children. This benchmarking is essential if we are truly serious about creating an institutional culture of accountability and continuous improvement.

I'd go on, but I don't have the stomach for it.  They throw around words like "globalization", "formulate", "validate", and the ever-popular (God knows why) term "benchmarking" like they actually mean something.  (And why is it that people who use the word "accountability" are all about everything but?)  What about math?  Science?  Reading?  Foreign languages?  What does the school actually teach?  What do the students learn?  I fear that the students, surrounded by meaningless words, will grow up to become politicians.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

October Is Just Over a Month Away

That means it's about time to record and distribute my public service announcement for Fire Safety Month.

"Don't let your kids play with matches.  After all, it takes a child to raze a village."

Thursday, August 21, 2014

You'll Say I Already Am

I saw something on my dining table.  Is that a piece broken off that owl figurine?  No, it's the wrong size and color. I picked it up.  It was a pistachio nut, without a shell.

How did it get there?  I have no pistachios in the house, nor any mixed nuts.  Did a ghost drop it?  Did I carry it in on the bottom of something else, and it just happened to fall off on the table?  Did I bring a squirrel inside with my flowerpots and patio furniture?  No, it couldn't be that, or else my apartment would look like the Griswold's living room.  (Or does that happen only if a dog is involved?)

I'm not imagining it.  I don't think. Maybe I'm going nuts.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

It's a Frame-Up

When I got home yesterday, I saw that a framework for the new privacy fence had been mounted to the old posts.

Looks fine, right?  Take a closer look.
The old posts are so far out of plumb that the carpenters had to add blocks to make the new fence hang straight.  (Note that the closer post needed more -- and wider -- blocks than the farther one.)

The new fence was put up today.  Here's the result.
I asked the apartment manager yesterday, when I saw the framework, if the fence would keep the meter reader from checking the gas meters.  She assured me there would be a space to make sure the reader could do this.  Maybe I don't understand what she meant, but I can't see the meters any more.  Can you?

Finally, here's what it looks like from inside my apartment.  I can see almost none of the grass in the courtyard, but at least I won't have neighbors peering in through my sliding glass door as they walk by.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

I Presume It's Smaller than a Cattle Car

How many ewes would a U-Haul haul if a U-Haul could haul ewes?

Monday, August 04, 2014

Errand Day

I expected to get off work after just eight hours today.  They should abolish cell phone usage at work (or at least keep my bosses from using them).  Still, it was just an hour and fifteen minutes extra today, so I thought I'd get my monthly haircut on the way home.

Wrong.  The barber shop is closed on Mondays.  I never knew it before, since I've never tried going on a Monday.  Now I have to let my boss know, "Hey, I'll need a little time carved out of my not-OT* so that I can get my hair cut, since we work until every other sane person has gone home for the day."

Still, it was a day when the sun was still up when I left work, so I treated myself again.  I had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for dinner, with salt and vinegar potato chips, milk, blueberry yogurt, and some black grapes (while relaxing on the sofa, reading a book, naturally).

Then I remembered that I had a couple of checks to deposit, which I couldn't do all last month because of working godawfully long hours.  So, I laced up my walking shoes and made it to the branch in the closest grocery store (just under a mile walk) before they closed.  Then, on the way home, I allowed myself a detour to the used bookstore in the maul.  I purchased six books from the $1.00 clearance shelves (and none from the regularly priced shelves) and continued home.

The sun is still up!  I'm tempted to celebrate some more by showering and going to bed now, so I have extra time to read in bed.

It wasn't a vacation day, like the two days we couldn't work late last week because of the rain, but it was still a good-feeling day.  I got things done because I had time, and I didn't feel rushed.  I treated myself because I could, and not because it was my only chance.  Now if it could only be like this more often...

* I call it not-OT since I'm a salaried employee and not eligible for paid overtime.

Saturday, August 02, 2014

Spicy Don't Got No Worms

I overheard an employee say that during a phone call this afternoon.  I remarked to another employee, "You could probably build a song around that line."