Friday, December 19, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Then we hosted a Civil War Cavalry Training thing Saturday and today, so we were a bit preoccupied. Anyway, she's home and doing much better. Pulse is down, anxiety is gone, edema is pretty much gone, and she's sleeping through the night. Oral meds are keeping up with the pain, too. Now she can really start healing.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Anyway... Gordo visited this morning and reports more improvement. There was an incident with a really rude, insensitive nurse last night, but other than that things are better.
A-M is planning on visiting Saturday in the first half of the day. I'll carpool in with her, and we'll take a stick blender and whiz up some Indian food for her. I'm going to make raita, because I think mine is better than the watery stuff we get at the restaurant.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Lots of pain yesterday. When I got there a bit after three she was dark around the eyes. She has no memory of returning from the procedure the night before and the consequent dressing change. I'm glad, because she was in screaming pain for a lot of it (she has a healthy grip, if nothing else!). Late in the afternoon they finally gave her an anti-inflammatory. Took a while to kick in but it really helped. They boosted the dosage on the "pain button"...but now it's so high that she gets nauseous if she uses it too often. Need to find a middle ground.
The head of surgery is reviewing her case/chart in order to offer a second opinion on the progress. He's a good guy. Right now it looks like they won't be putting her completely back together for about a year, so there will be no jousting for her until 2010. As soon as she can move around and eat real food she can go home. I don't see it happening this week.
She's been in the hospital for exactly one month as of Friday. Keep praying for healing of all infection and more importantly for her spiritual condition.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
The good news is that today she's doing better. More alert, more mobile, and fever coming down. The pain is being managed, and they're allowing soft foods. She tires easily, but it's good that she's to the point where she can tire herself, frankly. If we can go two or three days without another crisis, then I think we're on our way.
Keep praying. We're on a cusp, here.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Friday, October 17, 2008
For people who may be wondering about the constant Twitter and Facebook status reports over the last week, "Bev" is a close friend of ours (and Gordon's jousting partner) who underwent an abdominal surgery a week ago Tuesday. A few days later she went septic, and when they went back in to see why they discovered a pinhole in her upper intestine, plus a twist in same. Ugh. She's been in intensive care ever since, and for awhile was critical and on a respirator.
We put out an APB for prayer.
She's doing better. Slowly. Still need that prayer, for body and soul.
As of this moment she's off the respirator and has fewer tubes, but she's still "out of it" and struggling.
Thanks to everybody who has put her on your "list". Don't stop.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Update: Gordo's report
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Anyway, poor Sophie has had this problem for months. The other birds pick on her when she's down, so she hides from them. A lot. Which means it's sometimes hard to find her to check up on her. It also means that she's easy pickins' for a predator if she capsizes out in the pasture or the neighbor's yard, where they sometimes wander. I don't have their run completed, so they just free-range around the property.
I have to be away from home today, and didn't want to worry about her all day long, so I took a wire dog crate, took the tray/bottom out of it, and put it in the grass for an instant "chicken tractor" for her. Food, water, a stick jammed through for a perch, and some plywood over the perch for shade if she wants it. Perfect. She's in there eating her grain and scratching in the grass. Now I won't worry all day.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Is it just me, or is there an inordinate amount of out-of-proportion hyperbole being directed at Sarah Palin? Keee-ryminey! The people who support her wax rhapsodic, and the people against her seem to have degenerated into sandbox tactics. Are folks here in the USA just bored and looking for something to get all het up about? Call me bland, but I find especially the irrational ire a tad embarrassing.
Mind you, my observations are purely from watching my Twitter feed, Facebook feeds, and various other internet sources like blogs. I don't watch TV or read the newspaper, and I listen to a radio station that eschews what passes for "news" in this country for actual informative and educational content, so I'm constantly out of the popular infotainment loop.
For example, there's an application on Facebook called "Pieces of Flair", which is basically a virtual bulletin board where you can pin little virtual buttons (like the ones pictured above). It's very easy to make your own custom buttons, and entering "Sarah Palin" in the search window reaped a boat load of options. Anyway, the majority of them seem to be anti-Palin, and 99% of those are mind-numbingly irate, spouting pithy slogans such as "Sarah Palin is vile!", "Palin hates women!", and the always erudite "I hate Sarah Palin!". On the pro-Sarah side of things, there's not much good to be found, either. Mostly just cut 'n pasted official campaign artwork, along with some gushy enthusiasm. Some of the buttons are suspicious. Is something saying "Vote for McCain...because Sarah Palin is HOT!" supposed to be enthusiastic or ironic? If I were Palin, I'd have to quote one of my favorite lines in one of my favorite movies, The Abyss: "Stay off my side, ok?" My personal favorite is one depicting Palin as "Rosie the Riveter", from the famous WW2 poster. It shows determination of the common person, and I think we need more of that in government. Whether or not Sarah truly embodies this sentiment is not something I can answer. We'll see how things pan out.
Update: I was just fooling around on the TizMe site making a little avatar of myself. The options, as per usual on these things, really don't offer me many choices that have anything to do with how I dress my hair or the kinds of clothes I wear, so I really have to fudge a lot. This time the end result was cute...but I think I just turned myself into Sarah Palin. With a cat.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
For instance, this photo (also from the same guy's blog) illustrates one of my fonder memories of life in Japan: the Japanese 7-Eleven convenience stores. If you look carefully, you can see the glass humbow steamer sitting on the counter by the cash register. Anytime I wanted a steamed bun, I could dart into a 7-Eleven and grab one for a few yen! This shot is really evocative for me: the tile-esque pavement of the sidewalk, the diamond-deck ramp over the rain gutter, the skinny girls in short skirts. At least they're not little boys in tiny shorts! This was probably shot late at night, not too long ago, and I can just feel the humidity and smell the sewage. Yes, you catch whiffs of sewage even in downtown Tokyo. Lots of different smells, but that one was always a reminder that Japan is basically the world's most overpopulated "village" in the world.
Thank you. Won't you?
Sunday, August 31, 2008
"He despised the current fashion in gaudy furnishings. It was little wonder society was going to bits, surrounding itself as it did with fakery and ugliness. ...-empirical study would bear him out. Men were products of that with which they surrounded themselves. And men of substance could hardly spring from the cracker-box, factory-made trash they cluttered their homes and inns with." (p. 43, Babbage Press edition)This was meant to illustrate the world-view of a character in 1880s London, at a time when "factory-made trash" was indeed beginning to clutter and devalue the material world of the average householder. Unfortunately, things haven't changed much since then, and the quote applies equally well to the current day and age. I struggle with this in my own home.
When we moved into this house three years ago it was a study in 1980's tacky "white box" architecture, with a few garishly inappropriate attempts at color and character. This little shoe box of a WW2 tract house had been clad in white vinyl siding (to come off soon, I hope), had its hardwood floor covered in maroon(!) wall-to-wall carpeting, had the bedrooms painted a bilious dark pink (walls and ceiling), and the front room a stultifying industrial mint green (walls and ceiling). The kitchen: carpeted in grey. Carpeted. Think about that for a minute. No, the previous owners didn't cook in there. They barbequed outside and ordered takeout. A lot. The carpet is going soon, too.
Anyway, the green and pink walls have been re-painted, and the other frights are on the list. It's hard to relax in a house that resembles a trailer. Putting up racks of Renaissance, 18th and 19th century weapons and armor has helped, as well as some good antique furniture and many book shelves. Gradually our little tools of everyday life (cream pitchers, butter dishes, plates, cups, tables, chairs, storage devices, etc.) are being changed from "factory-made trash" to handcrafted items or at least older things that give off an old-world or antique vibe. It just makes for a more comfortable home, in my opinion. I can not bear a "glass & chrome" aesthetic, or even a "Danish Modern" one. Cheap overstuffed sofas in synthetic pile give me the willies, and loud, practically flourescent 60s type color schemes make me cringe. Give me earth tones and clear, jewel-tone colors. Turkish carpets and walnut furniture and tiffany(type) lamps.
Of course, I'm typing this on a computer that has not been modded by the Datamancer, which makes me wistful...
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Friday, July 18, 2008
I knew it wasn't Neil "one small step" Armstrong, and I didn't think it was John Glen, so I asked my teller, "Um, is it Buzz Aldrin?" Her eyes big as saucers, she blurted out, "You'r the only person to get it so far today!!"
"What?! You're kidding...."
"No! Most people just come up and say 'ok, I give up. Who is it?'!"
I had to then tell her about my run-in with ignorance at another bank, this time back in Stockton, CA. The shiny golden dollar coins hadn't been out long, and I was trying to amass a stash for use as spending money at historical events. I asked the teller if I could trade her a $10 bill for ten Sacajeweyas, and she just returned a blank stare. So I said, "The gold dollar coins." She then said, "Who's Sacajeweya?" The thought bubble over my head was reading, "What rock have you been living under? Don't they teach US history in schools anymore?! Do you even know who Lewis & Clark were you ignorant little twit? Put down the remote and read a book!!!!"
Luckily I didn't say any of that. Still, I weep for this country.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Monday, July 07, 2008
Friday, July 04, 2008
I don't care what they do all day, as long as it's not ridiculously loud. On the 4th and New Years, I expect some hubub...just don't push it too far after midnight, please. The rest of June/July/December? Knock it off! Some of us moved to the country for actual peace and quiet.
* That's a euphemism for "killed humanely", in case you haven't run into the term before.
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
Right now I feel beleaguered. I feel like I'm in a prolonged underwater fight sequence: one of those scenes in a movie that goes on so long that you either grow impatient (if it's poorly done) or grow short of breath (if it's engaging). Meanwhile, the people on the surface, in the boat representing the rest of my life, are waiting for me to slay the monster or other erstwhile opponent and emerge victorious to help them with whatever travails they are facing.
At any rate, I'm tired, frustrated, panicky, angry, and unhappy with myself. I'm pretty sure one or more of those people in the boat is stepping on my air hose. It's not helping.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
I'm trying to get a topographical map generated so my Civil Engineer dad can do the road grade plan for the new Renaissance Faire site in Belfair, WA. No, Mason County does not have any decent topos of the very rural area. The site was leased from Pope Resources, a logging company, and they certainly never needed detailed plans of the site.
The screenshot on the left is a lovely topo I've managed to generate using about 65 different types of software that I've downloaded in the last month. Unfortunately, it's intended for use in a mobile GPS unit, so I have a .mp (polish) or .img (Garmin) file. They look lovely, but are pretty useless for AutoCad. I need a .dxf file. If there's software out there that can convert the above file types to .dxf, I haven't been able to find them. I can finds scores of them that will take a CAD file and covert it the other way, which is somewhat less than helpful.
I've sent The Draftsman (my brother) a .dxf of these contours that I generated with DemTopo, but it won't have the road on it.
Why does any of this matter? It matters because this site needs to have the Road Grade plan submitted in the next couple of days or the County, who have been very passive/aggressive about this project, will revoke the permits for the project.
No pressure or anything.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
We need your vote every day to stay up on top! We need to move up on the TOP rated video list, so far we are on the second page!!
I hope you all have sent a message to your friends and family to vote by now!
Sunday June 15, is the cutoff date for this judging period, we have a good chance of being chosen June 23! I have only seen one video that comes close to ours in quality (the old truck which is leading us by the way) it really does not show the product very much and is too long for a commercial.
Anyway, we need to give it our best shot, have your friends and family put some comments under the video as well!
One more thing, I have just uploaded the video to another category “Did you see that” (thumbnail of John on the train) so if they approve it tomorrow (Friday) it should be on top for “most recent video” through the weekend!! Make sure you vote for BOTH videos when going on the site and please let your friends and family know to vote for both as well.
NOTE: The more important one at this point is the one under the “Laugh” category (with Melissa waving) because it has the most votes right now. When anyone types in “EXPRESS” in the search function both videos will show up.
Everyone really needs to get involved, lets win this thing!
Thank you for all your effort,
Monday, June 09, 2008
How about voting on this little "commercial" that I worked on last week? Starring Gordon as "the miner"! All you have to do is sign up at the Klondike site, then vote for our "Klondike Express" entry in the contest.
I'm totally biased, but I think it's one of the best entries so far, so I have no qualms about begging for votes. I believe you can vote once a day, so help us
Thursday, June 05, 2008
My sister put this slideshow together in his honor, and I think she did a great job:
Monday, June 02, 2008
Friday, May 30, 2008
I went out this afternoon to do some yard work, and heard a little bird in distress, "Cheep! Cheep! Cheep!" I assumed one of the cats had a swallow or robin, but they were all empty-"handed". I kept following the noise...and found a little yellow-white peep in the garden! Poor infant! Must have hatched this morning, because she was dry and mobile. Maybe Ophelia went out for some air and baby followed her...then stupid mom went in without baby. I scooped her up and put her in the cat carrier with her mommy, and she disappeared under the fluff.
There are five or six more eggs under her....gah. I'm sure some will be boys, so I'll have to get rid of them eventually, but I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. Actually, I'll probably put most of them up for "adoption" since I don't need a coop full of white and odd-colored birds. I'm happy with just one or two of each kind, thanks.
Anyway, it's very exciting. Yes, I'm a dilettante "farmer" and little things like this that are just business as usual for real farmers are very interesting to me!
Saturday, April 26, 2008
The Rittmaster and I have a discussion from time to time that revolves around the average American's obsession with ball teams, and especially the way so many people seem to personalize their fascination with a group of grown men (usually) being paid zillions of dollars to throw a ball around. "We never should have traded so-and-so!", they say, or "We're at such-and-such place in the series!" Um, what's this "we"? They don't know you and you probably don't know any of them personally. You're a face in the stands or, even more remotely, in front of a TV. More importantly to them, you're just a means to a paycheck. Not only that, but gone are the days when a ball team was actually made up of local chaps actually representing their local population base. I suppose I could see getting all het up about a college team (even though I never made it to a game when I was in college...too busy with much more interesting pursuits like boats and books), or an actual home-town grassroots league thing...but pro "sports"? Not so much.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Ironically, for me anyway, this recalls a memory of visiting a hardware store in Bremerton with my family back when I myself was a pesky teenager. Something in that store, perhaps a prototypical "Mosquito Noise Teen Repeller", emitted a very irritating high-pitched electronic whine that just set my teeth on edge and triggered a headache. My parents, being the stoic, staid, unflappable (transplanted) Midwesterners that they are, didn't buy it. I guess they thought I was just being a surly teen and crabby about being in a hardware store. Excuse me? I love hardware....not as much as books or office supplies, but I can waste a lot of time in a hardware store (even more now that I'm a home-owner). No, this was yet another case in a string of instances in my childhood where I, the resident alien life form, was experiencing something that the locals couldn't understand and weren't going to take my word for. It was just this one store, too. I never ran into that sound anywhere else.
We also had a running battle at home over whether or not a running TV set constituted a nuisance to somebody trying to sleep twenty feet away, even with the sound turned down. It was for ME, so naturally the TV stayed on no matter how early I had to get up the next day. I wondered if I was psychotic somehow, but now it seems that I just had typically hyper-sensitive teen ears.
This astounding new application of sound technology vindicates me! At least I think it does. Sort of. Not that it really matters.
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
He was not afraid to speak his mind even if it made him appear reactionary, ultra-conservative, or politically incorrect to the sheeple of the entertainment industry and others. Late in his career, a cameo or walk-on performance in a film lent it instant class and weight. One of my husband's all-time favorite films is "The Omega Man", which he saw at just the right age to idolize the tough, resourceful male characters in the story. My personal favorite, which is sadly not available on DVD from Hallmark for reasons I cannot remotely guess, is their version of "Treasure Island", with Christian Bale as Jim, and Heston as Long John Silver. If you haven't seen it you're missing a treat. Music by The Chieftans, boats I'd give my right leg for, and THE best Silver ever. Sorry, Robert Newton, you're a hoot and a classic, but Heston gives us a darker, richer character and far more believable.
My favorite Heston story comes from the making of Ben Hur. Legendary stunt man Yakima Canute was helping Heston with the chariot race scene. For the wide shots and dangerous stunts, Hur was played by a Stunt man. However, there were tighter shots needed, and Heston was going to have to drive a four-abreast team to a chariot with no brakes, careering around an arena with a bunch of other hot horse teams. Needless to say, he was a bit nervous and expressed his concerns to the Stunt Coordinator. According to Heston, Canute just said, "Don't worry, Chuck. You're going to win."
Friday, March 28, 2008
Monday, March 24, 2008
The gorgeous photo of Woody and me (right) was shot by Randy Pollett, who came out to visit us instead of doing the typical model shoot he had planned for that day. The few images I've seen so far are fab, but this one gets the prize in my book. Really nice atmosphere. Thanks, Randy!
Here I am as the lone pikeman, facing down the cavalry coming at me with pistols, which I think is totally unfair.
I died, of course.
All of Guillaume's photos here...
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Monday, March 17, 2008
Bill Corbett has something to say about St. Patrick himself, and sets us all straight.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Be sure to scroll down to the comments section and be entertained by the usual crop of disparaging idiots who instantly associate this group with the SCA or some LARP group. Luckily, the erudite and constructive comments far outweigh the dweebs.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
This is such a time-waster....but kind of a hoot, too...!
I just love the text on the Vogue cover with Gordo's picture: "Dressing your Age" (Yeah! The golden age of Piracy!) "What Works for Work" (lots of weapons) "Red is the New Black" (No quarter!) "10 Perfect Coats" (Let's see: the surtout, the frock, the justacorps, the roundabout, the cassock...ack, that's only five....).