Monthly Archives: July 2012

In the Lateness of the Hour

Today finds me grieving for a friend. Friend on the blogs Roguetek sent news of his wife’s passing. Peonysong was a jewel. She was a sweet, thoughtful and giving person that NEVER took crap from anyone. She had a will of iron and the strength of whipcord, and never let anyone forget it. Her wish was to live her last days in Texas, and Roguetek made it come true.

I pray for strength and comfort for Roguetek and Peonysong’s family. I know she is now in God’s loving arms, free from pain, and now watching over him, for the job of a wife to take care of her other half never ends. And tonight before my prayers, I will have a “talk” with her, remembering the day we spent together while doing laundry 🙂

Rest in peace, my sweet friend!

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Accidental Tourist

I was reading my List of Things To Do Before I Die™, remembering why I had placed certain activities, places, and things on it, when I came across this one:

#53– El Hierro, Islas Canarias

I still have relatives that live in the Canary Islands (which are not named for the bird, by the way). El Hierro, also known as Ferro, is the westernmost island of the group, and for a time was considered the westernmost point of the known world, as well as being the prime meridian.

El Hierro has no beaches, only rocky shores. That’s the main gulf of the island above. As I read my list, I tried to think of why on Earth I wanted to go there. It’s stark and sparse in population, and remote from the other islands.

And that’s the reason I wanted to go. To stand there, facing the ocean alone and unafraid, looking at what ancestors considered the end of the world would be humbling to my soul, and inspiring to my spirit. Sure, I would love to see beautiful places in the world. Who doesn’t?? But to be there, on the edge of the world, facing a setting Sun…that would be a thrill of a lifetime 🙂


Pomp and Circumstance, Part Deux

Hm…where was I…?? Oh, right! The two hour tribute to the National Health Service.

I had to break it off there, because truly it took a very large portion of the program. I must give kudos to Danny Boyle for starting this tribute to the government by tying it in with J.M. Barrie’s bighearted contribution of his work, Peter Pan, to the Great Ormond Street Hospital. It was a very smooth transition. And after all of the hospital beds lighting up, and kids jumping on the trampoline “beds”, and nurses and staff dancing around (and they were great at it, which begs the question: do they have a second job to supplement their income from the NHS??), J.K. Rowling showed up to recite something I assume she wrote, since I can’t find any information on it, and suddenly, figures from every kid’s worst nightmare show up!!

The Red Queen, Cruella De Vil, Captain Hook, and VOLDEMORT!!! And he was HUGE. But not to worry, because an army of Marys Poppins arrived floating down in umbrellas to vanquish the nightmares.

Like Mary Poppins could take on Voldemort… Sheesh…

Moving away from the NHS lovefest, we find esteemed comedian and British icon Rowan Atkinson in his role of Mr. Bean, playing the theme from Chariots of Fire with the London Symphony Orchestra, texting on his phone, playing his chord with an umbrella as he reaches for a tissue in his backpack, so he can blow his nose, and toss the offending tissue to the pianist. Classic Bean, right?? But his chord is rather boring, so he begins to daydream that he is running with the runners on the beach, falling behind, hailing a taxi to take him to the front of the line, and crossing first at the finish line after he trips the guy in the lead. I have to admit, I was in tears from laughing so hard.

And after such a great skit, it goes to Hades again. A convoluted tribute to music spanning decades from the 60’s to today. Apparently, there was no music in the UK until the Beatles. It was full of black lighting, peace signs, and then a clubbing scene where a girl loses her phone, but a guy finds it and texts her he has it, and she texts back, but I have no idea how she can do that unless she also was carrying an iPod, but why would you carry an iPod to a dance club?? And this texting and cell phone and emailing debacle is a tie-in to Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the internet. Finally the texting and cell phones make sense. But the choice of a rapper to finish leaves more than a few people speechless.

And then the athletes begin to file out. Greece is first, as is custom, and then alphabetically with the host country going last.

Some of the countries chose well in the uniform department. Among them were American Samoa, Fiji, Australia, and China. Some chose poorly. Among them Germany (pink and baby blue track suits??), Czech Republic (rain boots and shorts??), USA (we looked French), and sadly, Great Britain (gold accents on white track suits??). After they file out, there are more musical acts, complete with cyclists sporting glowing wings. They looked a bit like the Flying Monkeys, which was creepy, in my opinion.

The head honchos give their speeches, and they cut away to David Beckham “driving” the speedboat carrying the torch. Nice touch with Beck. He passes the torch to five-time Olympic gold medalist Steve Redgrave, who brings it in to the stadium. Traditionally, a former Olympian of the host country lights the torch. But not this time. A group of seven young athletes hand-picked by former British Olympians for their prowess and promise run with the torch, and then come back to the Olympians to have six additional torches lit, which they in turn use to light the petals of the cauldron, arranged in a circle, which then rise to make the torch:

The mechanics of it and vision were spectacular, but the cauldron is supposed to be seen from ALL points of the Olympic Village, not just in the stadium, so to me it’s a bit underdone and disappointing. But it is very lovely, nonetheless.

After the lighting, Sir Paul McCartney comes out to close the ceremony with “Hey, Jude”, bringing down the house. I guess because he’s a  Beatle. Personally, I think Sir Elton John would have done a better show. A duet with the two of them would have been spectacular! All in all, it was everything Britain liked, which I suppose that’s the point of the whole ceremony: to introduce to the world the host country.

At least, my droning over it is over. At least for the next four years 😉


Pomp and Circumstance, Part 1

What can I say? I knew I would be in for disappointment!

The Olympic Opening Ceremony was yesterday, and I was very, very careful to not peek during the day, since it was going to be preempted here. Before the opening, there was an introduction, nicely narrated, beginning at the source of the Thames and encompassing the beautiful English countryside as it followed the river to London. As the narration began, they showed sketches of famous British icons: William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Charles Darwin, and then John Lennon and Paul McCartney. It was as if there had been NOTHING of import composed or written or discovered in England between Darwin and Lennon. But I let it slide, since most young people here wouldn’t know if there had been, anyway. One thing that struck me as odd was how the narration talked about different nationalities competing, like the Chinese, and even the Massai, but lumped all Latinos. Huh…

The ceremonies opened as my British blogger friend Katipede informed: with a reproduction of a British pastoral scene, complete with livestock and working well and everything!! I had scoffed at it, but it truly was amazingly done. And ZOMG!!! Kenneth Branagh, who is awesomeness, recites from The Tempest!!!

Then as if by magic it began to transform into an industrial scene, and that was beautifully done. Smokestacks rising from the earth and men (and women, too) working in a factory setting, Branagh and Co. watching the transformation, with hundreds of drummers instead of 84 pianos to mark the transition, culminating in the forging of the Olympic Rings suspended above the field. It was masterful from a technological perspective. As the industrial revolution took root, there was then a pause for the War to End All Wars. Now, I’m all for a moment of silence, and was advocating for one specifically in memory of the Israeli athletes murdered at the Munich Olympics in 1972, forty years ago. But the IOC said that would be too political. However, the IOC did allow for a moment of silence for those who had died in the World Wars, as well as for the victims of the 7/7 attacks.

I assume those aren’t political in any way. Yes, I am a bit bitter, why do you ask?? But I had to remind myself that A) the director of this shindig happens to be a left-leaning socialist, and 2) the IOC is not exactly …. unbiased towards certain nation-states. And that’s where I will leave it!

Then it went to Hades.

People began filling the area dressed as members of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and other sundry Beatles films and song references, along with Chelsea Trumpeters and carnival goers, suffragettes, and dark figures representing the wounded. In a sweet tongue-in-cheek moment, Daniel Craig as James Bond escorts Queen Elizabeth II to the games, only to parachute into the stadium. Like that would happen! But she was a good sport, and did a great job for her first acting gig. That was the only redeeming part of this section. Because Danny Boyle decided to make the National Health Service the centerpiece of his tribute.

I am not putting down the NHS. They do have their problems, true. But my problem with this is that Great Britain, the United Kingdom as a whole, has contributed far more to the world than just universal healthcare. In fact, they didn’t contribute universal healthcare at all, since it is their system, not everyone else’s. And this is the OLYMPICS, where ALL countries come together to put aside their political differences and rejoice in the human spirit. Music, literature, medicine, law…there is no end to what they have contributed to the world. But the tribute to the NHS seemed like a discreet push to the government. It was tacky and overdone, and if the NHS is so strapped, why did they use actual nurses and staff to dance around?? GAH!!!

Anyway, stay tuned tomorrow for Part 2. There was so much to cover, I have to break it down in two posts. Trust me 😉


Working for the Weekend

It’s Friday, and time to start winding down!

There was a time when we would make plans to party hard and stay up until dawn, but that was in our youth…in our youth… Sigh…

Ok, truthfully, the only time I stayed up until dawn was when I gave birth to Eldest. I was never one for partying or clubbing much. In fact, most Fridays I recall sitting in front of the TV to watch Remington Steele in my high school years, and whatever Sci Fi (I refuse to use the new spelling) had on in my later years. But the one thing I look forward to on Fridays is Hubby being home and relaxing.

It’s nice to just sit and enjoy each other’s company. Until one kid yells at him that the new level has been reached and he runs to give guidance in navigating through some dungeon. Then it’s just nice to hear the “Wait, wait!! Go that way!!”, smiling at the intense look on their faces. At least until they go down the wrong passage and are accosted by evil lurking things and consequently get killed before saving the game.

Well, it’s still fun for me, anyway 😉


Drive By Posting

Yep, it’s one of those days. A day when I can’t think of anything to write.

I’ve been having a lot of those lately.

It’s a lot harder to write when you avoid politics, religion, and *ahem* ….

Sex.

I can’t even type that without blushing. Sigh… Anyway, finding fluff to write is hard, especially when I live such a boring life, placed myself on a financial diet, and been having sadness issues. No, I don’t think I am suffering from depression. If I were, the WORLD would know it. I would make sure of THAT!! A blog is a personal journal of observations, but one that should never be used to vent a spleen. There are plenty of things that have upset me, but none belong here or on a social site. Stuff like that should be kept private, in my modest opinion. Except when they decide to air dirty laundry, dragging your name in the fray because Aunt Bunny said you were her favorite and Guido gets mad at her and calls her names, telling the world Aunt Bunny shaves with a straight edge and that I’m only her favorite because I have her mustache*. Then it’s ok to throw down because bullies will NOT be tolerated!!

Where was I? Oh, right… lack of content. Tomorrow I will have a nice post up. I figured by then my imaginary friends will be talking to me again 😉

*Names were changed to protect the innocent.


Wednesday Sithy

Yesterday we helped my BIL move into the barracks, so I fell behind with my chores. That means I am cheating and posting a Sithy, courtesy of my brother, who has the same sick sense of humor I do.

Eddie Izzard, Star Wars, and Legos. It’s a trifecta. Also, it may be a teeny bit NSFW, but still damn funny 😉


Today’s Life Lesson

As is my habit, I was on the social-site-with-faces when I noticed one of my friends discussing a certain leader of the free world whining about something. I won’t go into the politics of the post, since y’all know me well enough to know how I feel about it. But he said something that struck me as rather odd.

He fights like a girl.

I know this is supposed to be an insult to men. But the reality is that it’s a cruel lie.

We are vicious. We are cruel. And we fight dirty.

Never, ever think that fighting like a girl is an insult. It isn’t. If someone says that, consider it a warning that either A) the person fighting is vicious, or 2) the person saying it doesn’t know women very well.

Usually it’s #2 😉


Game of a Certain Throne

I swear, no matter how early I get up, I still run late posting here.

This weekend we had Nomstress and her hubby Nightflyer as our guests. As usual, we had a lot of fun enjoying the company and laughing about people we know. Mostly my relatives. Anyway, Hubby was scrolling through the movies available On Demand™, when he spied one of our favorite BS meter movies: The Core.

And then he decided to make it a drinking game.

Since I had seen the movie before, I knew I would have been sloshed by the first fifteen minutes, so I passed on it and remained sober. Needless to say, the results were epic. I must admit I relished being the sober one, because it left me free to poke fun at the others. I felt the power, and it was GOOD!!!

I may be a lightweight, but I ain’t stupid 😉


Sundays, and Doughnuts, and Dogs

Well, it’s Sunday. We have a houseful of guests, so I suggested to hubby to go get DOUGHNUTS!!

We were triumphant in our endeavors. We returned with many delectable varieties for the masses, including this one for moi:

Raspberry-filled glazed deliciousness. You are drooling, I can tell. But Life has a way of making fun of me when I least expect it. You see, this post was originally going to regale you with the sweet nothings of the aforementioned doughnut. But alas, it is not to be. As I got up to get more coffee, my big dog Lenny took the opportunity to help herself to my slice of heavenly sinful sugary goodness!!!

That. Broke. My. Heart.

So, I shall make do with a kolache. And an additional cup of coffee to quell the desire to yell at my dog for taking the one joy I looked forward to today. But not to worry. I’m sure the Moscato will be flowing this afternoon 🙂