Sunday, February 29, 2004

The "Hobbit" generation has now been validated. Past Viet Nam and pre-punk. My brother, yes "that" one, gave me the Trilogy for Christmas when I was twelve. I read them, and moved on to Jerzy Kosinski, Tolstoy, and my great favorite, Cervantes. (In translation.) Lord of the Rings isn't a lifestyle.

It has been many years since I've sat through the Academy Awards. Any of the songs was better than Annie Lennox's. And I have always liked Annie Lennox. Those from "Cold Mountain" were lovely. Lucy seems to like Alison Krauss.

LATER: Just another note, doesn't look like there's any love lost in Hollywood for Sean Penn. That's not a political opinion. He looks like an insufferable little jerk.

I have received two vile e-mails today advertising teen sex sites FROM my e-mail address. I don't know what to do. If you have received any such thing from my e-mail address, be assured that I am not generating it.

Thursday, February 26, 2004

I am going west! Haven't been west of Lubbock, Texas, for 27 years.

LATER: Lyman reminds me that this is a lie. We went to Oregon several years ago to attend a nephew's wedding and cook the rehearsal dinner for the wedding party. It slipped my mind because it was a busy family visit, rather than one focused on place.

Monday, February 23, 2004

We did something Friday night that we don't do enough. We invited friends for a family-style supper. Nothing fancy. We gathered around the bar and lit into barbecued country ribs, baked beans and potato salad. Maurice and Glenda brought their son, Seth, a first-year law student, and his girlfriend from Baltimore.

Lucy was our entertainment. Geez, what a flirt! She played with Seth for a few minutes, then crawled up his arm to settle on his shoulder. She fluffed, she stretched to show her beautiful wings, she preened, she preened Seth's hair, reached around to kiss his lips, repeatedly, and carried on like a common harlot.

Seth talked about it the next day. His girlfriend was a tiny bit jealous.

Sunday, February 22, 2004

Craig Johnson of J-Birds has written more. This entry has some interesting notes about breeder females "decorating" their nest boxes for the coming season.

I have lost my comfy old blue Keds. Last Saturday, there was much to do before the party. I was running about straightening the house, and I whisked the tennies out from under the desk and put them -- somewhere. Not under the beds, not in a closet, not in the file cabinet. Where can they be? And no, they can't be tracked by smell.

LATER: Aha! I found them! They were in a milk crate on the floor of Lyman's closet. What was I thinking? Why didn't I just shove them under the bed?

Friday, February 20, 2004

I would like to thank Papa Possum for suggesting that Donatella Versace (on the left) appear in my dreams last night.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

This is by no means a political blog. But I will weigh in on the current issue of gay marriage. I'm for it. I have seen a "death do us part" scenario.

It is no secret that I have a gay brother. I have not emphasized it because he doesn't either.

For ten years in Dallas I shared space with my brother and his partner. When I became unhappy there, they brought me here, and delivered me to happiness. My brother's partner died ten years ago of lymph cancer. Nothing has been right with him since.

My brother, one of five, tried to commit suicide when he accepted that he was gay after he came home from Viet Nam. Now, he is nearly sixty (one of the lucky ones), and comfortable with himself. Lonely, maybe, but not self-destructive. When I asked him about gay marriage, he said that about 98 percent of his acquaintance flees from the idea. He is indifferent to the issue.

He and his partner had done necessary legal work -- wills, affidavits, ect. -- when his partner died. I remember him feeding his partner cream soups and high-calorie anything to keep him alive.

I can't deny that.

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Mr. Craig Johnson of J-Birds has updated.

In his entry for February 14, an owner writes that the first full sentence her young bird said was "Stop that right now!" Wonder where he learned that?

Taking recommendations on wheeled luggage. We don't often travel by plane, only perhaps once a year. We do make at least one trip to Dallas a year and two to the Gulf Coast, both by car. We don't need the sturdy stuff of a business traveler, but something that will last for a good while. Suggestions on brands to look at?

Mr. Greg Hlatky's A Dog's Life has long been a favorite read of mine. Go there to read how Lacey, the champion Borzoi, took Best of Breed at the Westminster dog show this year. Congratulations to your household, sir!

Start here and scroll down.

The party went well. Guests liked the food, but given the nature of the crowd, a half dozen bags of chips and some dips would have been adequate to keep it going for a few hours. It's a group of people who once gathered often, but now are busy with grandchildren and sports schedules and such, and just don't see each other much. Gales of laughter, and no, Peg, nothing near a gunshot.

Our boys came up from Baton Rouge, with their young lady friends. The boys enjoyed spending time with familiar elders and the girls seemed to be not bored.

As we get older, this party becomes shorter and shorter. It started at seven and the house was clear by 11:30. Next year, I think we'll move it back to 6:30, so people can be home by 10 or 10:30.

Of course, I picked up something, and have been shivering in double socks for two days in 55 degree weather. It seems to be passing. Lyman's been under the weather since, too.

Saturday, February 14, 2004

If, I repeat "if", John Kerry cheated on a jealous woman with half a billion dollars, he is too dumb to be my president.

LATER: Here's a firm denial from the woman allegedly involved. Time to put this rumor to rest. (Link via Instapundit.)

Friday, February 13, 2004

Oh, my. Friends sent me flowers.

My biggest of all brothers (there are five) called to wish me a happy birthday this morning, from Oregon.

Here are the lyrics to "All Night Long". Can you find the music?

Thursday, February 12, 2004

The menu for Saturday includes Lyman's scrumptious red beans and rice, his mother's terrific recipe for chicken and dumplings (my big job), Lyman's rabbit sauce piquant, crawfish pies, and assorted finger foods. I wish you all could come.

I found 15 little pots of healthy Gerbera daisies for $2.47 apiece at Wal-Mart today. What a cheerful sight. They'll make dandy decorations, and the ladies will have a flower to take home that they can even plant in the yard if they like.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Today is my birthday. I am 47. At this glamorous age, I am celebrating by cleaning the refrigerator and breaking down the Viking rangetop in preparation for the party Saturday.

Monday, February 09, 2004

I really needed a nap at about noon today after waking at 4:30 this morning.

I take such naps on the sofa in the great room because the sofa is comfy and I have interesting dreams there, and so Lucy will be quiet and not squawk for attention. I returned Lucy to her cage, settled into position with pillow and lap blanket, and said "Lucy, let's be quiet. Janis is taking nap."

I closed my eyes and began to drift.

Soon I heard a little child's voice softly calling "Janis ... Janis."

"Hey, Lucy, what is it?"

"Janis, what you doing?"

"I'm resting, Lucy. Let's be quiet."

Time passes and again a little voice says "Janis ...."

"Yes, Lucy."

"What you doing?"

"Taking nap, Lucy."

"Janis take nap?"

"Yes, Lucy. You should, too."

A little spurt of childish laughter.

A little while later, it's "Janis, what you doing?" then "What you doing, Lucy?"

Then "What you doing, Lucy?" Then a little laugh.

On and on.

My little one needs to learn more words. But she didn't squawk. And I did manage the nap.

We are entering the week of the battle of the sexes. We're expecting more than 20 on Saturday evening for a party.

All Lyman cares about is the food. I am expected to help with shopping lists and such. I have a few dishes to cook, and I am in charge of the cleaning, and believe me, Lyman won't lift a finger with that.

We'll be going head against head this week, because that is the way he likes it (he is a lawyer, after all), and by Valentine's Day I'll be looking for a Saturday Night Special. I know because it's always this way.

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Debra and Craig Johnson of J-Birds will take Lucy for our holiday. Yippee! She'll be in expert hands.

Debra told me a funny story today. She met a couple with a very handsome Grey. Debra knew the bird, but did not recognize the people. "Where did you get this bird?," she asked. "From J-Birds," they said. "Oh, that's me," she replied.

They will update as time allows. Craig does the blogging, and has a large work project going on now.

Nate would be interested to know that we met a man from Alexandria in Baton Rouge yesterday at Backpacker who is taking his family to Deer Valley soon. Last year he outfitted his children and took them to Steamboat Springs. He said the family has to go again before the kids outgrow their stuff.

Fun sign sighting yesterday in St. Francisville: Happy Tails (in an Old West font), Professional Dog Grooming.

Peg has some wordplay up that is amusing.

Friday, February 06, 2004

We took the 80-mile drive today to Red Stick. There we bought ski togs and seafood.

I can't tell you how ridiculous and wasteful it feels to be trying on thick gloves and jackets when a light cotton cardigan over a sleeveless t-shirt is burning me up. But most of these items we bought will have some use over the years, even if we never ski again, and don't gain a lot of weight.

I can say with confidence that if I break my neck on the slopes I will be wearing my most expensive outfit. I'm not a clothes horse.

More interesting to me as always was Tony's Seafood. It is a whopping business run by an Italian family of five or six brothers and sisters. On this Friday afternoon there were three people directing traffic in the parking lot.

They carry live catfish which they electrocute then clean on order, oysters, shrimp, crab, turtle, alligator, rabbit and more. No nutria. We had to downgrade from nutria to rabbit for the sauce piquant next weekend, to the relief of our guests.

We bought rabbit, Louisiana Fish Fry and two sacks of oysters in the shell, one for us and one for a friend. For $16.99 you buy close to a hundred oysters, give or take one or two. It is an "R" month and we are celebrating our anniversary. It will be a busy week at our house. If you hear the radio playing, don't knock.

And, of course, we forgot "The Rule of Three", which means that if you have more than three items to buy somewhere you'd best take a list. So, in the crowd, and our haste to drive home before dark, we forgot the crab for crab-stuffed mushrooms for the party next Saturday. Now we'll have to scrounge around here to see what we can find.

Sure, 80 miles is not a far drive, but we'll be busy.

Thursday, February 05, 2004

Today would have been my mother's birthday. She would have been 85.

Lyman read that LSU has signed a boy from junior college who is 6' 7" tall and weighs 380 pounds as an offensive lineman. Nick Saban is looking smaller and smaller.

This was Karen's daddy. You should have seen the crowd at the visitation last night. And the flowers. What flowers!

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Poor Big Daddy. His unmentionables are all washed and folded and returned to the bag he brought them in. Now he tells us he'll have to sneak them into the house and put them away when Girl is napping. She insists that she can do laundry herself. Maybe a little later, Girl, but not right now.

So, what is it with you guys? Big Daddy has earned millions and at 85 his drawers are threadbare. I threw a pair away because the seat was worn out of them -- not two strands of fiber holding the shebang together. I'm not a Victoria's Secret shopper, but I do a little better than this. No wonder he wanted Lyman to do his laundry.

Girl hasn't done laundry. So I asked the classic question this morning, "What is it, Big Daddy, briefs or boxers?"

Stay with me, kids. It's the harvest season in Vidalia, and it won't take long to hit home. Karen Biglane up the street just lost her daddy to colon cancer yesterday, Bo Weatherly, Belinda's daddy, just across the street, is not looking good, and Jimmy Gardner, up a block or two isn't looking good at all.

In our case, it's my mother-in-law, Girl. She is pretty swiftly losing her mind. Not Alzheimer's, I think, but something more akin to senile dementia. It's tough on Lyman's father. He has loved that tiny girl with the clicking heels for 62 years and counting.

Monday, February 02, 2004

Last night's Super Bowl was one of those occasions when we Louisianans couldn't lose. Rohan Davies, past quarterback at LSU, and running back Kevin Faulk play for the Patriots now. Jake Delhomme of the Panthers is a boy from Breaux Bridge, crawfish capitol of the world. Nothing for us to do but smile.

"Wardrobe malfunction?"

Sunday, February 01, 2004

News doesn't get better than that coming from Dallas these days. When I talked to my sister last week she told me she had sold our mother's house to a young Hispanic couple expecting their first child. Good for Patricia and good for the couple. They'll have a tight little house for their young family, and a big fenced back yard for the baby and his or her friends. Great luck to them.

This week Patricia has put in a bid for a 1600+ square foot duplex which she considers perfect for her needs. Just down the street from Central Market, Peg, and a seven minute drive from work. I can't wait to visit.

Plus, that cute man Dave (I met him in August), has invited her to Las Vegas on April 1.

UPDATE: She has it!