Mar 24, 2011

Winter Blues

I've now got a three part plan for kicking the endless winter blues.

Part one (1) was the Happy Hour Task Force, now in its third week of minimal but quality participation.  A little drinking, a lot of conversation.

Part two (2)  The fancy schmanzy anti S.A.D winter lights. I bought one (count 'em, only one) of those lights.  I think it helps!  It's like a one-foot square of artificial sunshine blasting at my face.  It has a button for 'ions' too.  "Odorless, tasteless, microscopic negative ions."  Who knew you could buy ions?  And shoot them at your face for "safe...use in the home or office." Now, the important question is, can you operate heavy machinery while using the ion generator?

And part three (3) babies laughing in YouTube videos.

Normal run-of-the-mill baby laughing:

Baby with "devil" laugh:

And the now infamous "baby laughing at dad tearing paper"

For added enjoyment, I played a couple of them at the same time. (I don't need to say whether I discovered this because I just couldn't figure out how to close the browsers.)

Mar 19, 2011

Make it Stop!

If this rain* doesn't stop, I'm installing those lights for Seasonal Affective Disorder on every available inch of wall space, ceiling space, floor space, and counter space in our house. I'll nail them on the closet doors.  I'll stack them on the table, my desk, the washer and dryer, the unused beds. I'll put them on the stovetop, in the fruit bowl, on my printer, on my dresser, on the elliptical machine, on the couch, the recliners, and I'll balance them on top of the regular lamps. I'll string clothesline in every room and dangle the anti SAD lamps from the clothesline until you can see our house from outer space. This rain has got to stop!!

Plan B: throw everything that will fit into the Prius and move to Arizona, which would have the added benefit of adding a blue vote to a red state.

*If you live in another part of the world, feel free to replace the word rain with the word snow.  You have my sympathy, too.

Mar 13, 2011

With Apologies to All You Amazing Women

I can't forward another thing!

I can't add my name to your niece's school research project.  You know my name or you couldn't have sent me the email; you add my name to the list and forward it. For that matter, your niece could have added your name.  I don't care that it's not scientific; it's less trouble to me.

I can't change one letter in the last word of Word Scrabble and forward it to the next victim. Is this like a long cyber game of musical chairs?  Will someone eventually get stuck, unable to form a new word, and lose the game?  Is there one loser and three hundred and fourteen winners? I'm thinking there probably aren't prizes for us. So no forwarding.  I quit.

I can't send uplifting cartoons to my friends and wait for the surprise message that comes when I do everything correctly.  No surprise message ever comes.  I have waited an embarrassing number of times for the surprise.  It never ever comes.

I can't tell ten amazing women they made a difference in my life, including the amazing woman who sent me the email.  And she is amazing, truly awe-inspiringly.  It's so hard to tell each of these amazing women that you aren't playing.  And of course, the woman who forwarded the email to you couldn't tell some other amazing woman, maybe her sister-in-law, her best friend, her mother, that she wasn't going to forward this time or ever again.  So each time we get one of these emails, we incredible women each consider who among our friends and relatives are the nicest, or the most sentimental, or who like us the most, or to whom we haven't forwarded for awhile, and we hit send. We say a little silent prayer that our friends will understand.

We are collectively wasting enough time to stop the Iraq war, turn the economy around, get gay marriage legalized in all fifty states, and maybe even de-weird Charlie Sheen.  

Can we all just say no?

Just to be clear, I still want anything funny.

Your local curmudgeon,


Mar 11, 2011

Happy Hour

I've decided that what is missing from the suburban day-to-day life is the Friday night watering hole experience.  The tribal gathering around the fire.  The bowling league.  The Irish pub.  I  want a weekly tete-a-tete (look it up) with my buds.  I want to have a place I can go where there will be someone, anyone, who I know and who will be glad to see me.  Better yet, a few people who know me and are glad to see me, and glad to see each other, too.

So, I have created the Happy Hour Task Force to research and find an appropriate bar for a weekly drop in.  Tonight we had our first meeting.  I meant to get around to an agenda and name tags but we got along without them.  We checked out the pool hall and a tapas restaurant and then settled in at the upscale bar for white wine and a mixed drink.  Three people, five drinks between us, so we're not the heavy lifters.  This place has good potential, though, and I'll send out an invite for next week's happy hour.

Don't you think we need this, we middle-agers?  In our college years and early twenties we had that community, that amorphous amoeba of friends who gathered weekly or daily.  Now that we live in the burbs we rarely meet in groups.  We see one another but there is no spark, no unpredictable possibility that comes from having a group together.  Or at least it doesn't happen often enough.  The Happy Hour Task Force will trudge on in behalf of the group.  Watch for minutes of the upcoming meetings.  Perhaps sign up for a committee yourself.