Thursday, March 31, 2011

I Tink, Therefore I Am

Life has a lot of rules. One of them is that you don't get to choose a nickname, such a moniker is usually thrust upon you by others. Depending on how those others feel about you, the nickname could have positive or negative connotations. Even someone who loves you dearly can hang a name on you that sticks that you despise. Or one that you grow out of, yet those who know you persist to address you as such to your chagrin. I've had nicknames over the years, but none of them has grown beyond use by just one or two people. I remember my mom calling me little pretty until I was five or so. My brother Cullen had the habit of coming up with a new one for me every few weeks. Jose. I still have no idea why. For a while, my first two initials, CJ, which then devolved into Jeep. Preppie Girl. Sissy. Then there were the mildly pornographic cutesy ones bestowed on me by boyfriends, which I shall not share. For several years now, to a select group of people, I have been known as Tink. I met this guy at an open mic who used to write a blog. Many people he mentioned by their actual names, but if you were really special, he referred to you with a nickname. While I am not blond and do not possess wings, this is the brief conversation that caused him to call me Tink:

So, Carla from Brookings, what is special about you?

Excuse me?

What's special about you, what makes you different from everyone else in the room?

I have a dragon tattoo, I'm a writer. I don't know, I knit backwards.

You what? Like, you're unraveling?

Well, no, when my Grandma taught me how to knit, I sat facing her and copied what she did. So I mirrored what she was doing and what I made ended up opposite, or backwards from what she made.

Hmm. Knit backwards. Tink.

Later, when I started reading his blog, I left a comment as Tink, and immediately others leaving comments knew who I was, as did he. It was fun. I had an alter ego. I met some interesting and cool people. His blog no longer exists, at least if it does, I haven't seen it since he shut down his band's website a couple of years ago. I'm still Tink, though. I have a teensy TinkerBell pin on my jean jacket. I've always had an affection for fairy lore, so my nickname fits right in. There was an original song that his band played that was a personal favorite of mine, and more than once they played it when I was in attendance. He'd introduce the song, saying, Tink, this one's for you. And I'd hear people around me murmur, who is she, anyway? I'd just smile.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Sis!!

Hey, Miss Pamela! There are only two ways to get a sister. The obvious way is that your parents make one for you. The other way is to choose one. I'm grateful every day that my brother married you. You are the very best gift that Cullen ever gave me.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Fridge Photos

My guys. Of the human and feline varieties. When they were small. The upper photo is Michael to the left and Reid to the right. At approximately four and three quarters and three quarters of a year old, respectively. Brothers. The lower photo is of Newton and Einstein, at some adorable kitten stage. Brothers as well. Some time in the last couple of years I was on the employee committee at work, and we thought it would be fun to put up photos in the lunchroom under the banner of Things We Love. And then have people guess who loved the various things and people and pets depicted. Letting co-workers in on parts of our lives that otherwise might go unseen. So, I guess, these are my loves. Of the son and cat variety. When I brought the photos home, they went up on the fridge. Time flies.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Waxing Phalangeal

Ooooohhhh...I want one of these! And just what is this appliance, you are thinking. It is a TheraBath commercial model paraffin wax bath. You dip your hands (or feet, or elbows) into the melted wax several times until a good, thick layer is built up. Then wrap in plastic to hold in the heat, rest between a couple of pillows or towels, and, aaahhhhh. The achy and crankiness melt right out of your hands. The wax is available in exotic scents like lavender and mint. I see one three times a week when I have physical therapy. But it would be ever so loverly if one just moved in to stay. A little side bonus is that your cuticles get so soft and happy that they almost cease to exist. Everyone, repeat after me, I believe in the work comp fairy....I believe in the work comp fairy....I believe in the work comp fairy...

Sunday, March 27, 2011

What's in a Name

Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor Hilton Wilding Todd Fisher Burton Burton Warner Fortensky. I expect she had a number of replies when asked why she married so frequently. One that seems honest to the point of bluntness is one I particularly like, "I don't know, honey. It sure beats the hell out of me." At the opposite end of the veracity spectrum is one I remember hearing her say in a television interview, "I'm a very moral woman. Rather than have affairs, I get married. I've only slept with men I've been married to. How many women can make that claim?" Please give us a very large break! I don't have a clear memory of when this interview took place, and the wording may not be precisely correct. Nor do I remember the reaction or follow-up question from the interviewer. What I do remember is wow, she is truly a great actress to keep a straight face while uttering that line! Either that or she is so delusional that she believes what she just said! I'm not passing judgment on Ms. Taylor's personal life, and I don't envy anyone who grows up and lives out her life in the unblinking scrutiny of the public eye. Maybe this is just a clear illustration of our preoccupation with the inner lives of the famous. I think it was a dumb question to ask in the first place, maybe Liz did, too, and offered up this answer just to be difficult. Who is fucking whom, the when, the where, the how and why of it, seems to capture our attention no matter the context. One thing is certain. Only Ms. Taylor knew for sure, and that information died with her last week. Her legend, the fact as well as the fiction of it, will live on.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Recipe for an Excellent Saturday

1. An hour-plus phone chat with my sis.

2. A Prairie Home Companion was back after three weeks of compilation shows.

3. Dinner out with Reid at Applebee's. And I had a $5 coupon!

4. Chocolate cake! Homemade. With chocolate buttercream frosting.

5. You've Got Mail, one of the ultimate chick flicks. Goes well with cake.

Toss together lightly and serve immediately. Mmmmm!

Friday, March 25, 2011

What Day Is It?

I must say that the oddest thing about being off work for a long stretch is that the days of the week don't carry the meaning they normally do. Potentially, every day could be Saturday. In a sense, I've had seven months of Saturdays. The only thing that gives my week some form are my physical therapy sessions every M/W/F. During the first three months of this span of time, I made an effort to get out of bed at a reasonable time and be bathed, dressed, and ready for the day. I made it a point to have some reason to leave the house, accomplish a task, meet up with friends. I was recovering from surgery then, and wasn't scheduled for PT. I expected to heal up and get back to work, according to the average prognosis for my condition. Then the set-backs set in. I didn't have a normal recovery, I had post-surgical complications that required extra trips to see my ortho surgeon and approval for physical therapy. I took advantage of Work Comp's indecisive wheel grinding process to visit Martine and deal with some family issues. As long as I was there, I had some serious sis-bonding time that was very enjoyable. A mere three days from returning home I got the phone call that PT had been approved and was scheduled for the following week. That was four months ago. I'd love for TGIF! and HumpDay to mean something to me again. I always loved the restorative and peaceful feeling of a Sunday when I worked a regular week. Now it only feels different because the newspaper is bigger, the crossword is more difficult, and the funnies get their own section.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Joy of Sox

I bought new socks today. I love new socks. I love fun socks! I have two drawers full of socks, which is more than anyone really needs. But some of them are seasonal, many of them are holiday specific. There are a couple pairs that are older than my children. Come to think of it, there are some that outlasted my marriage. Uff-da. My question is, then, how is it that I produced a son who owns and wears only white socks? Okay, there are a couple pairs of black socks for dressing up, but they often remain in the laundry room collecting dust between formal occasions. All day today I felt just a little springier with pink flamingos on my feet. I recommend it.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Hanging With Colleen

Last time we had a meal out together, I got my hair cut that afternoon. And since the universe has its own little ways of staying in balance, after Colleen got her hair cut this afternoon, we went out and had some food together. Somewhere in between these two eventful days of moderate feasting and trimmed up coiffures, I drove up to the big red house on the hill where she lives and she made dinner. She bakes bread. Mmmmm. She made something delightful called salmon mousse, which I had never eaten before. We drank some wine, and there were tiny cheesecakes for dessert. There was no haircutting involved. Late this afternoon when she arrived at my house, it's a good thing I was in my bathrobe. If I'd had just a couple more minutes, I would have been dressed, and we would have been twins. Blue jeans. Black sweater. Deep pink scarf. Black shoes. Black coat. Somehow I think we are subtlely influencing each other. The pink scarf is my influence on her, basic black is hers on me. Last April, when I had some time between flights at the airport in Phoenix, I looked down and realized I was wearing what I call the Colleen Uniform. Black tank, black cardigan, tan capri pants. I laughed out loud. Then I called her to tell her how I was dressed. She laughed, too. I noticed something else today. She was carrying a very cute purse. But it wasn't black! It was a lovely, vivid shade of blue. Indeed, our fashion sense is mutually contagious. But two things are a given. I will always have the larger number of accessories on my person at any given moment. And she will forever and ever amen own more pairs of black shoes. Tiny black shoes. Most of them with higher heels than I can walk in and appear sober. I don't know how she does it.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Politics of Religion

Yes, I do know that neither of these subjects should be broached in polite company. So perhaps those of you who are polite should not read any further today. Unless you wish to be even the least bit offended. Oh, this also involves the phenomenon of Facebook Creeping*. Think I've covered the disclaimers, so on with today's post. Just moments ago, on the info page of a friend of a friend, I noticed their religious belief listed as antagagnostic. I love this word. And I'm entertained by the possibilities of meaning. In the diagram to the right, I think that antagagnosticism would fall inside the Not Stated piece of pie. Semantically this a great deal of fun as well. Hostile, perhaps even contentious about sitting on that fence.

*You know, when you find yourself peeking at photos and personal information, whatever is available to not-friends, perhaps in a voyeuristic, normally curious, or just as easily a perfectly innocent quest for knowledge.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Piano Talk

This is what J.S. Bach had to say about playing the piano:

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.

This is what Fannie Brice had to say about giving birth:

It's like pushing a piano through a transom.

Beach Boys founding member Dennis Wilson had this to say about life:

All I need is a big surfboard and a piano.

And how can any of us forget the title of the 1978 album released by the band REO Speedwagon?

You Can Tune a Piano But You Can't Tuna Fish

I share these bits of wisdom with you for only one reason. I wish to share with you my super hero power, which is the ability to stop a polite dinner party conversation dead in its tracks. In this case, should the subject of pianos happen to come up, you are now well prepared. You are ever so welcome.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


I keep promising Reid I'll bake another chocolate cake, which he first derided, then decided was delicious. The first one was made on Valentine's day, more than a month ago. He was certain it couldn't be on the same luscious level as brownies, but soon admitted he was wrong. And requested another. I still haven't delivered, but probably will this week. For no apparent reason, this guy has been on my brain off and on for over a week. Now that spring is here and the full moon has passed, maybe he'll stop haunting me. Speaking of spring, the snow is in full on melt mode, and I see large patches of brown emerging all over the yard. The driveway glacier has almost completely receded, and the pink flamingos can be seen in the front yard. And yes, the sump pump has been running! Quietly and efficiently. And speaking of the full moon last night, which was supposed to be quite spectacular, it was unseen in these parts due to overcast skies. And I wonder where my grill cover has gone off to. I have no idea when it disappeared, the whole thing has been encased in a snow drift until recently. And there's this white pole-like thing leaning up in the corner of the fence in the back yard that I don't remember putting there, or being there before the melt. I expect that I need to put on my boots and do a little walk around property to see what other surprises the ravages of winter hath brought. Before I call the roof guy to find out why I have this puddle of water on the top of my stove, I need to take a look up there to see if there is evidence that the range hood vent was shingled over. That theory seems just a little more likely than an incontinent squirrel is lodged in there. But for now, the clothes dryer is calling, and I must go.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


Listening to NPR. I haven't been glued to the media like this since 911. I woke up this morning in my safe, warm bed, astonished by the cacaphony of birds outside my window. I know where my sons are and that they are safe. I have electricity, food, and water. I have the freedom and the means to do whatever I feel like doing today. Well, within reason. And I'll probably head into the laundry room to spelunk through and begin to organize the mess in there. My wish for the Libyan people is that they will soon have the luxury of waking up to such a morning. And hear birds rather than gunfire. And experience a true appreciation for the mundane peace of a Saturday afternoon. I recognize that it is only human nature for me to gripe about near four dollar a gallon gas, my total lack of a love life, and the tendonitis that continues to plague my hands. While I am griping, I have more than half a tank of gas in both of my vehicles, I remain relentlessly optimistic, and I can still type, though with a dismal rate of wpm. Suffering, like all else, is relative.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Kitchen Karma

Can you believe I've been using my remodeled kitchen for nine, I said nine, years? I don't know how you're dealing with this bit of news, but I can hardly believe it! Yes, since you asked, I still like it very, very much. Okay. I love it. Which makes me glad that I took the time to plan it out the way I did, taking into account where to store things, what kind of cooking I do and how those two factors influence a kitchen design that works for me. And it does. I particularly like the breakfast bar, useful for eating the meal after which it is named, as well as quick lunches and snacks. It magically transforms into a wine bar when I get out the pretty goblets and a corkscrew. When the boys were younger it was easy to supervise their homework progress while I was preparing dinner nearby. The kitchen itself is roomy enough for two, even three cooks to work in when the tasks are split up according to the different work areas. Alas, in the last nine years new gadgets and dishes and cookware (oh, my!) have been acquired while less useful, worn out and excess items have gone on their merry way. In the ensuing shuffle I have made do and shoved over. Made room and tucked away. Until the moment earlier this week when I realized an entire reorganization is due. Then I did something dangerous. While pondering over the open floor space in the kitchen as I was finishing my coffee, I got out the tape measure. I was still in my pajamas. Then I had to track down a pair of glasses so I could read the tape measure from a standing position. And I determined, without professional help, that perhaps I have room for an island! Still pajama clad I consulted the internet, which is much too available at times, and found a suitable island cart that was a little smaller than what I was pretty sure I could accommodate. You can't argue with free shipping! I also did a brief search that turned up a coupon code that gave me another 15% off! When it arrives, the great kitchen reorganization shall commence! This is actually pretty good timing, my kitchen will be better organized for all that Weduation food prep! And since I'm planning a spring rummage sale, this is my opportunity to weed out all of those odd things that are wedged back into the darker corners of the cabinets. And yes, I do seem to have fully rationalized this purchase. It's not quite as much fun as my chocolate brown suede Paul Green boots, but it is a teensy bit more practical. And since it's black, I know Colleen will approve!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

So Long, Dillon, Texas

I have just learned that the fifth and final season of Friday Night Lights will debut on NBC on April 15th. That's twenty-nine days, people. For any of us who are impatient, FNL Season 5 will be released on dvd April 5th. Just a little warning, I will be unavailable Friday evenings from April 15th until the series concludes. I have a date with Coach Taylor.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Snow, You Were Saying

As of Monday this week, behold the snow in my front yard. You can see that at some point we gave up on shoveling the front sidewalk and deck. So if you think you're important and ought to use the front door, you'll just have to wait for a complete and total thaw. Then you might as well go to the back door anyway. That's where all my favorite people show up. And wipe your feet. There were puddles today!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Weduation Countdown

The invitations have flown! Or, since they're via email, they've been electronically transmitted. So the countdown has officially begun. Which means I need to get busy! Very busy! To the utmost extreme! Busy! Which means I really need to stop taking days where I don't manage to get out of my pajamas and into regular clothing. And make lists! Lots of lists! And then get busy accomplishing tasks so I can check them off the lists! I do hope the snow melts and things warm up a bit by May 7th. I'm pretty sure there's a grill and some patio furniture under those drifts. Until then, there are plenty of indoor chores that must be done. I guess hibernation has come to an end.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Pecan Pi

What a relief! I thought perhaps I was getting all predictable, but I've only made a fuss over 3.14 and posted it one other year. So far. This year it's pecan pie, and just as soon as it's cool, Reid and I are digging in. I know some purists who are waiting for 3.14.15 @ 9 am to celebrate, but as far as I'm concerned, pie is one of the joyful things in life, and should be celebrated as often as possible. With whipped cream. Even at breakfast, pi rules!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

QoS, Day Two

What do you do with the glass doors you removed from the tv cabinet? First, I recommend burying them under piles of debris in the laundry room for a couple of years. Eventually they get shifted to the closet just to my left. After acquiring this lovely as well as highly functional glass desk, I thought, hmm, where did I stash those glass doors? They would work beautifully repurposed as shelves! But what do I use for supports, again, hmmm. I shopped around for glass blocks but was informed that I would have to special order and purchase an entire case of them! For something like $75! No. Then I considered the craft store version of glass blocks, but at $10 each I still thought it was too pricey. Wandering through my local nameless big box mega-store, I ran across these rectangular glass vases. At $5 apiece, still a little more than frugal me wanted to spend, I agonized briefly but knew they were absolutely perfect for my little project and grabbed four of them. I also grabbed a package of self-stick plastic bumpers. Once home with my vases, I assembled my shelves with a little help from half a bottle of Windex, a helping of elbow grease, and minimal profanity. The best part, aside from the fact that the result is just like the desk, lovely and functional, is that if I need four rectangular vases, or if I decide to move the shelves to another location, taking it apart and reassembly will be very doable. That sentence was really long. I was hoping those cobalt/white Ukranian style Easter eggs might be hiding near the glass doors/shelves in the closet. No such luck.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Queen of Style

Okay, maybe not the queen, but definitely one of them. My dining room* table now feels spring-like despite the fact that no pastel colors are involved. The table runner is actually a clearance scarf from Lands' End that I've never worn. It set me back about six bucks, and I love the graphic print and the color. Never felt quite right when I tried tossing it on to finish a look, so I kept putting it back in the drawer. It looks much better on the table than it ever did on me.

These baskets were found in the 90% off basement bargain clearance area of a favorite local store! All five came in under four dollars! What is it about tiny baskets that is just so darn adorable? When Easter nears I'll incorporate a set of cobalt/white Ukranian looking eggs to the mix. But first I have to find them. I have six weeks, right? Less the hour we shall lose overnight tonight. I better get busy...

*I believe I have admitted before that I don't have an actual separate dining room. It's really just the far end of the kitchen, separated by the breakfast bar. But sometimes, particularly when the table is clear of grocery bags, recycling on its way out to the garage, and piles of stuff needing to go downstairs, and the occasional cat, and my purse, and when it's photographed from this angle, it certainly looks and feels like a dining room table.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Time Flies

These are the first pics I took of Newton and Einstein. We had just brought them home from Colleen's, they were seven weeks old. And tiny. Just little fur balls. I didn't have a digital camera at the time, these were snapped with my cell phone. In June they'll be five years old. Newt has finally grown into those ears. And Steinie's meow still sounds like it's being generated by his kitten-sized self. I'm pretty sure they ate that African violet.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Bring on Spring!

I not only have a brand spanking new sump pump installed, I have the old one as a back-up unit! I also have valves that allow me to switch the drainage from outdoor to indoor! Meaning that should I have basement water issues during freezing weather, I can drain water into the sewer! I know, I was thinking about creating a cute little skating pond for the squirrels with that emergency drainage. But if there's that much water around, they won't be skating, they'll need little boats. Like the one the Ty-D-Bowl guy had. Bring it on, Mother Nature, this girl's basement is ready for the spring thaw!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


First off, thanks to Linda K. for posting this bit of silliness on Facebook today. I've been playing with it, and not just with my own name, which by the way, anagrams into can blame marvel. Marvel Comics? I can blame them for how I turned out? Then will they be obligated to pay for my therapy? And chocolate? Look how much fun this is!

Garrison Keillor -- GRR! LIONLIKE OR AS

Subaru Motor Company -- MOST BOUNCY PARAMOUR

Barbra Streisand -- BAD STAR IS BARREN

Sex and the City -- NEXT DAY ETHICS

Kyle Chandler -- YELL HACK NERD

Oprah Winfrey -- HYPE WORN FAIR

Julie Andrews -- INJURE AS LEWD

The Wall Street Journal -- ENTHRALL JESTER OUTLAW

Elvis Costello -- VOICE SELLS LOT

Somebody stop me!! -- BEST SODOMY POEM

And, I believe on that note, this post shall end.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


It is a day of triple celebration! Yes, it is International Women's Day. And I'm celebrating even if I'm just plain old intra-national me. And today is Liz's birthday! Both of these events are observed on March 8 of each year, but how often is Shrove Tuesday thrown into the mix? You do the math, I'm busy writing. Easter is about as late as it can be this year, what with the full moon falling just a couple of days prior to the Vernal Equinox. And since Mardi Gras has snuck up on me this year, I failed to make preparations. Wearing some tacky beads and a feathery mask with my pink flannel penquin pajamas will have to do. And tomorrow I'm calling the plumber guy. Really.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monday. Blue.

After spending the entire weekend in pajamas all doped up on Sudafed, I can report that I am mostly better. And after actually styling my hair today, I discovered that I had some random renegade bangs that need trimming. When I lounge around in flannel pajamas, the only effort I make with my hair is coordinating the color of the ponytail holder with what I'm wearing. Rather than taking it upon myself to take scissors in hand and deal with said hairs, I stopped in to see my hair professional, Diane. She fixed me up in seconds. My hands are particularly cranky today and were even more so after a 45 minute PT session. I find myself dangling what ifs all over the place while I wait for the results of my FCE. Then I tell myself to stop doing that, and actually do stop. For a while. Really, all I have to do is open up My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carole Oates to forget about my own life. The Rampike family has their own creepy twist for putting the fun in dysfunction and makes me feel sane, normal and boring after just a couple of pages. Still no word on my current round of writing submissions. Think I'll take my particularly cranky hands upstairs, have a bedtime glass of wine, and work on adjusting my attitude. Believe it or not, drinking wine requires much, much less manual dexterity than typing.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Cover Girl Boundless Color, 515 Megawatt Mauve

You know your hands are in pitiful shape when it takes half the day and all your energy to trim your toenails. After a 45 minute soak in the bath tub I did rally enough to paint them a springy color. If a little nap further restores me, it could be that some teensy flower decals will be in order to finish the job properly. Sadly, after looking outside, my festive toes will be hiding inside fat, fuzzy socks and boots for a while longer. But I still know they're there! Longing for sandal season.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Feeding My Cold

So far today:

* 1 orange scone and coffee
* 1-ounce bag of chips left over from lunch yesterday
* Mug of broccoli\cheddar soup
* the last few peanuts from the bottom of the container

I'm really, really craving a Coke, but will save that to go with pizza later. Reid will be delighted that we are ordering pizza, and I will be delighted that in my coldish condition that I don't have to cook.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Mamma Mia!!!

I have a question. Let's be honest, I have a lot of questions. But the one foremost in my mind, after having viewed and thoroughly enjoyed Mamma Mia this evening...does Pierce Brosnan really and truly think he can sing? And, on a refreshing note, I have an answer. Who cares. He's gorgeous.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Girls Night In

When you ask Brittney to bring dessert, she delivers! Seriously! This was some sort of grown-up ice cream soda, we weren't sure what to call it. Other than yummy. As you can see, fresh raspberries, sorbet, ice cream, white wine, and to top it all off, chocolate whipped cream! Alcohol laced whipped cream!

In addition to dessert, Brittney also brought her sister Ashley. Ashley approves of the dessert. Yes, we ate dinner, too. Just a little chicken-broccoli-cheddar cheese soup and bruschetta. We saved the best for last. Mmmm.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

ObviousWoman Strikes Again!

If Wednesday Adams married Frederick March II...would she then be called Wednesday March the Second?

Feel free to groan. You're most welcome.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March-ing Along

Other than lunch with Colleen, a haircut with Diane, and contemplating with a medium amount of angst Part One of my FCE tomorrow morning, it's been a quiet day. Also, it is Tigh's birthday. And as he is a leap year child, he has now attained the age of 5.75 years. March has arrived, and officially so now that all three calendars have been turned up to announce that. I have decided to visit Australia, probably in October. Just as fall is arriving here, spring will be in full swing down there. In between now and then, I have an FCE to get through, more physical therapy, perhaps a referral to a neurologist, throw a party for Liz and Michael for their Weduation (or Graduwedding) and I'm sure many other things I haven't begun to ponder. Like returning to work in some capacity pending the outcome of the FCE. When the streets melt off, riding shotgun with the still-not-licensed Reid. Calling my plumber guy to get going on the sump pump business before all that snow melts and ends up running into my basement. And calling the roof guy to figure out why there is frequently a puddle of water on top of the stove. They wouldn't have shingled over the vent on the roof for my range hood, would they? And now, it is that time of day when a book and a blanky, a cup of tea and a comfy spot to sit are calling to me. Hammock weather for this activity can't get here any too soon. Just substitute a beer for the tea.