Sunday, May 29, 2005

Heaven On A Stem

Oh my oh my. It's that time of year and I am sitting here savoring the first Rainier cherries of the season. We discovered these at Pike Place Market not long after moving to Seattle; like any good pusher of addictive substances, the market vendors used the "first one's free!" tactic which resulted in us walking out with a couple pounds and a lifelong yen.

I can't fully express how achingly we look forward to their brief appearance every year (they're only available for about two months - late May thru middish July). Blackberries are as brief and delectable a treat, but in August they're readily available all over town free for the picking (ah, the Pacific Northwest - even our weeds bear fruit!) so they don't have quite the same cachet as these delicate and beautiful blobs of sweetness.

What a fabulous weekend this is turning out to be.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Editorial Mea Culpa

So. Eddie Albert died yesterday. He was in his late 90's so there's not a lot of room for much sadness... the man had a good long life and passed on peacefully. But hearing of his death reminded me about how I have always confused Eddie Albert the actor and Eddy Arnold, the country-western singer that I remember fondly from my youth. So fondly, in fact, that I mentioned him last year in a post on his 96th birthday.

Wait a minute.

Sure enough... I messed them up last year. It was Eddie Albert's birthday that got me all nostalgiac about Eddy Arnold. Mr. Arnold is, as of this reporting, still alive and turned only 87 on his birthday last week. Geez.

Consider this my Dan Rather moment. So very very sorry. Will you ever trust me again?

Friday, May 27, 2005

The Heat is On

I know I shouldn't complain. Really I do. And yet, I will.

Yesterday the temperature reached the upper 80s. Today we're going to hit 90.

Degrees Fahrenheit.

Dear Capricious Weather Deities,

Perhaps you haven't noticed the date, but this weekend is Memorial Day in the Pacific Northwest. Traditionally, on this weekend, you provide us with rain and 50ish degrees, ruining any and all camping plans. Sometimes you bless us with 60s and sunbreaks. Every so often you look on us with great favour and give 70s and clear skies. All of these are acceptable, O Great Ones.

So I have a question as we swelter in our non-air-conditioned homes while the bright orb shines down mercilessly causing our eyes to burn and our throats to parch... have we done something horrific to offend you, or are you simply having a great laugh at our expense? If the former, what can we do to atone? If the latter... ha fucking ha.

Love you. Mean it.

Suffering in Seattle

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Robert, We Hardly Knew Ye

Today we bid a sad farewell to Robert, Nathan's betta fish and first proprietary pet. Although Robert was a member of our family for only six short weeks, we had become accustomed to his cheerful presence, and he will be sorely missed.

Named in honour of Nathan's baseball coach, Robert was light-blue and full of fishy vigor. During his short life, he enjoyed swimming, hiding in his fake-plant forest, and building bubble nests.

Goodbyes were said at a simple service in our backyard where we buried him (with some food and a hollow bone in which he might hide in his piscine afterlife) under the dogwood tree; his final resting place is marked by a lovely stone that Nathan picked out.

While many bitter tears were shed, we all agreed that we were happy that Robert spent his final days being cared for and loved by Nathan... for what better fate could any fish wish?

In addition to his human family, Robert is survived by his roommate (though not his tankmate!) Lucille, Sophie's bright-blue transsexual betta. She asks that in lieu of cards or flowers, donations be made in Robert's name to "Nathan and Sophie's Disneyland Fund."

Requiescat in pace, petit piscis.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Here Comes The Sun... I Mean Rain... I Mean...

I love this.

You know that saying... "Don't like the weather in {insert city}? Just wait 5 minutes." Yeah. For the last three days it's been literally true here.

Sun, rain, downpour, wind, sun, hail, thunder, lightning, downpour, drizzle, clouds, sun, rainbow, drizzle, downpour, sun.

And that's all before noon.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Umpire Strikes Back

The year is 1984 and I'm a freshman at Coldwater High School. Then, as now, a hopeless romantic. Then, not-so-much as now, quite shy and unsure of myself.

The class is typing with Mrs. Jacoby. Not keyboarding, as a similar class would be called today. Typing. On IBM Selectrics, and a few spankin' new Wheelwriters.

The boy is quiet, with dark hair. He's a junior and he looks great in flannel shirts. He's on the wrestling team. I'm fairly certain I never say one word to him, but oh how I admire him from afar. I write his name, as anonymous lovesick girls do. I dream about him. I steal glances in class, look for him in the hallways and at lunch, take the long way to class so that I can pass by his locker. I'm a good-intentioned, non-threatening stalker.

On Valentine's Day, I send him a carnation. Of course I don't sign my name, only "Your Secret Admirer." (Yes, I am a cliche.) A very few of my girlfriends share my secret. I don't see him receive the flower, but I see him with it later and wonder if he thinks he knows who sent it... though of course he doesn't, or he's wrong. I never ever say a word.

He graduates, the crush passes, life moves on. I don't even know that I remember these things.

Until today. When, at the beginning of the Tiger's game, the announcer mentions that brothers Tim and Bill Welke are umpiring. Wait... Bill Welke? The boy?

Yup. He and his eldest brother are both MLB umpires and they're working on the same crew this year. The home series against Tampa Bay was the first that they've worked together in Michigan.

What a funny, random life. And where the hell has 20 years gone?

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Ch- Ch- changes

Okay, one small one that you'll notice if you post (or want to read) comments.... when you click on the comments link, it won't go to a new page, but instead will show them in-line. To hide the comments, click on that link again. Voila! Thanks to Protected Static for the idea and how-to link.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Painful Things*

*Where the pain is of a relatively minor sort, nothing like losing a limb or the election of a chimp as leader of the free world.

My piano is being tuned right now. My god. It is the most annoying thing ever. My ears might just bleed.

The Yankees swept the Mariners. Today's game was particularly bad... 13-9. I mean... if you can't win a game with your offense producing 9 runs, you just don't deserve to win. And being swept is bad enough but this was by the Yankees who have SUCKED, much to my everlovin' delight, until this series. Their sucking was sweet enough to override the sucking of the Mariners and the inconsistency of the Tigers. So now the Mariners still suck, the Tigers are still inconsistent, and the Yankees have won 5 in a row. If this continues, I might be done with baseball.

I have a ball wedged between the chair and my low back. Must I pay for poor weeding body mechanics forever? I need to win the lottery so I can have massage every other day for the rest of my life. I'm sure that would take care of it.

I will likely never win the lottery.

Monday, May 09, 2005

K's Index Plus Commentary - May 9, 2005

Days since last blog post: 14
Blog drafts begun in that time: 2
Times (per day) guilt pangs were felt from lack of blogging: 81

I wish I could say my hiatus was prompted by some grand series of events (especially ones that involved coming into large sums of money which required frequent visits with lawyers and investment professionals), but really I just got out of the habit. And, extreme creature of habit that I am, it's been very hard to break the inertia of not posting. Plus I figure that if I post sporadically, it'll keep you coming back, desperately hitting reload to get your Lively fix, not sure whether there'll be 3 posts in a month or 3 in a day. Keep 'em guessing, I always say!

Now, here are the rest of the stats, compiled since my last post.

Visits from out-of-town friends: 3
Ms. Anastasia spent 4 very fun and busy days visiting from Ventura. There was eating and music and talking and weeding and shivering and did I mention more eating? The visit culminated in a night of uncontrollable laughter like I haven't had in a while. Thanks, schnooks, though I honestly could have lived without the finger-licking story. AUGH! And last Saturday night I had dinner with my invisible Harry Potter friends, Anne and Abby - or as I described them to my DDN (Diaper-Dropping Neighbours...more on that later) "friends from my online book group" - who were visiting from the UK. Don't worry - we kept our wands hidden in public so as not to startle the Muggles.

Piercings contemplated: 1
Piercings obtained: 0

I'm not entirely sure why I think I might want to get a nose piercing, but I think I might. It's all Anastasia's fault, actually, as she said during her visit "Let's go get a piercing done!" Alas (or not) we ran out of time, but I'm still thinking about it. I'm also thinking that I'm a 35-year-old mother of two and I'm wondering if it will look cool or just look like I'm desperately trying to look cool... and there's nothing less cool than that. Opinions?

Concerts attended: 4
One thing that we've had to adjust to in moving to Seattle is the fact that - and stop me if you already know this - we're way the fuck out here at the edge of the Continental US. No, really. Passing through Seattle isn't something that's done mistakenly, it's not a waypoint between anyplace except Portland and Vancouver (and beyond that maybe Homer, Alaska). Consequently, we get fewer opportunities to see the musicians from back east whom we love, and who used to pass through Columbus fairly frequently as they criss-crossed the country on their low-budget tours. So when the last weekend of April provided us with The Perfect Storm of performers coming through, what could we do except go out 4 nights in a row? First was Redbird, followed by Shawn Mullins, then Ellis Paul and finally Girlyman. By the end I was exhausted but musically sated... at least until Eddie From Ohio visits next month.

Crushes developed: 3
Two were on musicians - Kris Delmhorst (and not just because we spell our names the same) and Ty Greenstein of Girlyman (even moreso after reading her bio). The third is on Mary Grace, the teller at the U District Key Bank branch who always waits on me. All are so cute that it almost hurts, and Mary Grace has a nose ring. Hmm.

Games lost by Nathan's baseball team: 2
This is of blogworthy note only because of my reactions to the losses. Both were hard-fought close games, one even went into extra innings. Outwardly, I was all "Great games.. good to lose some, teaches good lessons, keeps you humble... all about having fun... blahdy blah blah." My inner dialogue, however sounded more like "Grumble grumble... stupid opposing coach... stupid umpire... stupid other team... hate losing... why? why? why?" And yes. I do realize that these are 7- and 8-year-old boys playing a GAME of absolutely no import. But - and this is another realization that might only be news to me - I'm a smidge partisan (if smidge means a LOT). I hate to lose. I root strongly for my side and take losing very hard whether it's in politics or sports. Not necessarily pretty, but true.

Teeth lost: 1
By Nathan, not me. It's his second (the other front bottom one) and "lost" isn't quite the right word. "Ripped from his mouth by his own impatient hand" would describe the process better. I can definitely say that he's much braver than I was as a child; mine pretty much had to fall out with minor wiggling. So another gold dollar for boy, and another memento for me. On that note, I'm beginning to wonder where the cut-off between "sentimental" and "creepy" is when it comes to keeping your kids' baby teeth. Two? Five? Ten? All of them? Or is any number kosher as long as you don't make a necklace and matching earrings out of them?

Episodes of ER watched: 6
I'm a very sporadic TV watcher; when I get busy, weeks can go by without turning it on in the evenings. But my good friend TiVo knows that eventually I will come back to my flickering friend and he saves the things he knows I'd like to watch. Since the end of April was SO full, last week was spent doing as little as humanly possible beyond watching a boatload of TV. In addition to catching up with ER and Sex in the City re-runs, I also watched about 8 episodes of The Daily Show and 3 of Joey. Yeah, sue me - Joey makes me laugh and I'm looking forward to the 4 that still await my attention. How YOU doin?