Friday, April 28, 2006

Good-bye Abigail

Abigail Keeler.
Beloved friend and shoulder-rider, who has forever left her paw-prints on my heart.

The Rainbow Bridge

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Slap Your Co-Worker Day is Coming!!

This is one of the funniest e-mails I have received in ages so I couldn't resist sharing it here. I figure it was created by the people who work with Adam Weissman who, according to "Music Hath Charms" in a recent issue of USA Today, inflicts his music on his coworkers by playing his iPod through his computer speakers instead of using a headset. Can you imagine having a really bad day, then having this guy inflict his choice of music on you? The article says he likes to cheer up his coworkers with songs like "The Muppet Show" theme. Yes sir, one incident like this would lead to a severe slapping!

Slap Your Co-Worker Day is Coming!!

Tomorrow is the official Slap Your Irritating Co-workers Holiday. Do you have a co-worker who talks nonstop about nothing, working your last nerve with tedious and boring details that you don't give a damn about? Do you have a co-worker who ALWAYS screws up stuff creating MORE work for you? Do you have a co-worker who kisses so much booty, you can look in their mouth and see what your boss had for lunch? Do you have a co-worker who is SOOO obnoxious, when he/she enters a room, everyone else clears it? Well, on behalf of Ike Turner, I am so very, very glad to officially announce tomorrow as SLAP YOUR IRRITATING CO-WORKER DAY! There are the rules you must follow:
  • You can only slap one person per hour - no more.
  • You can slap the same person again if they irritate you again in the same day.
  • You are allowed to hold someone down as other co-workers take their turns slapping the irritant.
  • No weapons are allowed ... other than going upside somebody's head with a stapler or a hole-puncher.
  • CURSING IS MANDATORY! After you have slapped the recipient, your "assault" must be followed with something like "cause I'm sick of your stupid-a$$ always messing up stuff!"
  • If questioned by a supervisor or police (if the supervisor is the irritant), you are allowed to LIE, LIE, LIE!
Now, study the rules, break out your list of folks that you want to slap the living daylights out of and get to slapping ... and have a GREAT DAY!

Thank God I don't work with anyone who deserves slapping!

Friday, April 14, 2006

A Night to Remember

April 14, 1912. At 11:40 p.m., despite the efforts of First Officer William Murdock, Titanic struck an iceberg and damaged six of her watertight compartments. It took her 2 hours and 40 minutes to sink. In that time 1/3 of those on board escaped in lifeboats. Titanic had more than the required number of boats, enough for about half those on board, but most boats were launched with less than full capacity (for many reasons).

The other 2/3 of Titanic's passengers and crew, over 1,500 men, women, and children, died horribly and needlessly. Many faced death bravely and their stories are part of what keep the memory of Titanic alive today. Titanic died with them, after only four days of service.

Then she, the stricken hull,
The doomed, the beautiful,
Proudly to Fate abased
Her bow titanic.
Praise now her multitude,
Who, nursed her fortitude,
Fell in on deck and faced
Death without panic.

From Poems and Ballads (1896)
by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch

In 1898 Senator William Alden Smith, who led the American Inquiry of the Titanic disaster, cut this poem out of a newspaper. In late 1913 Smith re-read the poem and was struck by its eerie resemblance to Titanic. Notice that it was written 16 years before the disaster.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Winner: Dan Brown

I just heard that last Friday "High Court Judge Peter Smith threw out a copyright-infringement claim by Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh, who said Brown's blockbuster plagiarized their 1982 book, Holy Blood, Holy Grail." Read the story on CNN; includes a link to the actual verdict.

Funny, the lawsuit got more news coverage than the verdict. If I were cynical, I'd say that the media only covers surprising/unexpected stories...

Monday, April 10, 2006

94 Years Ago Today

April 10, 1912. RMS Titanic left Southampton, England for her maiden voyage to New York City. While leaving Southamptom her massive bulk snapped the lines of ships moored nearby, including the American Line's New York. A collision was avoided at the last minute, but Titanic was delayed for about an hour. She then crossed the Channel to Cherborg, France and arrived about 7 p.m. The cross-Channel passenger disembarked and after taking on passengers and mail Titanic headed for Queenstown, Ireland.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Warriors of Oz?!

Today's paper, in the coupons, contained an ad for Warriors of Oz by Hamilton Authenticated. Authenticated what? This has nothing to do with the book/movie we all know and love. Dorothy as Zena, Warrior Princess? Toto as a demon dog? Scarecrow the archer, Tinman the Cylon, and Lion the were-lion. What the hell was Hamilton Authenticated thinking and who buys this crap?

Hear that rumbling sound? It's L. Frank Baum spinning in his grave.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Time to Car Hunt?

My 1991 Toyota Camry has an elusive electrical problem. My first clue was when the horn and idiot alarm (the thing that beeps when you leave your keys in the ignition or leave the lights on) quit working. Not having a horn bothered me so I asked both my mechanic and the Toyota dealer what to do about this problem. Both told me it would be expensive to diagnose and repair because it requires essentially dismantling the car. Both told me it wasn't worth it for a 15-year-old car with 200,000+ miles on it.

I really like this car. It's in good shape for its age and still gets good gas mileage. I decided to put up with the elusive electrical problem. Before long the dome light quit, but I didn't really think about it. It could just be the bulb, after all. Then the dashboard lights for the heat/AC quit. They still come back on sometimes, when I hit a bump.

This week the elusive electrical problem added some new, weird manifestations. First, I noticed the "door ajar" light on the dashboard was flickering. It didn't go away even after I slammed all the doors. Then I pulled into McDonald's and, to my horror, realized the windows no longer work. The only time I really need to put them down is in a drive-through -- or when it's warm and rainy and the windows fog over (for which the defrost is totally useless), and that's pretty much all summer. That's when I got scared. If the windows don't work, could the same thing happen to the electric locks? I never lock the doors when I'm in the car now for fear of getting trapped inside. (I'm claustrophobic and just thinking about that makes me uneasy.)

SIGH. I guess it's time to start looking for a newer car. I dread it. I know nothing about cars. My brother tells me to buy a new Saturn using his GM Option 1 because I drive too much to lease. My father-in-law tells me I'm crazy to buy because leasing is cheaper, even if you put a lot of miles on the car. Leasing a car that's a couple of years old is even better. Do I want a Saturn or another Camry? New or used? Can I even afford a new/newer car? Is my old Camry worth any trade-in value? How low can I get the payments? Do I need a down payment? I'm so busy with grading right now that thinking about these about these things, let alone the idea of looking at new or used cars, puts my stress level through the roof.

Maybe I'll just buy a lottery ticket.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

94 Years Ago Today

April 2, 1912. RMS Titanic underwent her sea trial and passed with flying colors. Her keel was laid down March 31, 1909 and she was launched May 31, 1911. It took over two years to build her, almost a year to fit her out (complete the insides), one day to test her at sea, and 2 hours and 40 minutes to sink her just five days into her maiden voyage.

Every year from March 30, when Capt. Smith transferred from her sister Olympic, to April 15 I think about where she was each day, and what was happening to Titanic. If only I could change history!

To Be, Or Not To Be: Four Hundred Years of Vanitas Painting

Yesterday my husband and I went to the Flint Institute of Arts to see an exhibit called "To Be, Or Not To Be: Four Hundred Years of Vanitas Painting." You can read Roger's detailed post on his blog. I won't repeat his post by explaining what vanitas is or describing the exhibit, but I will admit that I had a hard time not laughing at the one piece of abstract modern art in the exhibit.

I enjoyed the exhibit. The painting are fascinating and disturbing reminders to enjoy life because it is so short. We couldn't resist buying the catalog because it was only $25. I highly recommend this exhibit but, unfortunately, today is the last day.