Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Farmer Dean's

My little garden harvest last week. Those cucumbers will not quit!

After growing what seemed like a lot of produce on my little patch of land, friends came over and viewed my tiny garden space. Inspired, they went home and planted a HUGE garden up the back slope of their property. Just below what used to be the stables. Fairly fertile, if you will.

I adore their garden. Because they do all the work and I get loads of food. Last week I called to see if I should drive out and make a harvest.

"Not much here," they told me, "we ripped out all the beans and snap peas. The corn is no good, it bolted. All we really have is tomatoes. But come by if you want."

Here's what I got:
A GIANT bowl of big red tomatoes, a HUGE zucchini, three overly large white squash, a spaghetti squash, one smallish regular eggplant, 6 Japanese eggplants, a big bowl of cherry tomatoes and a mini-watermelon.

Nope, nothing to be had really.
(half gone in 5 days)

(only three of these big babies left!)

Seeing all these gorgeous red ripe tomatoes on our counter, I decided to go get some buffalo mozzarella. Knowing how the dogs can be, I set up a line of defense against them along the edge of the counter. Two large Tupperware containers along the right and on the left the giant zucchini. You'd think that would be enough?

No. One of the dogs proved to be far more persistent than I had anticipated...

Was it Mr. Cooper?
Or little Mrs. Pickles?

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Happy 100!!!

Since I will never actually BE 100 (even if I was, I'd claim 89) this will be as close as I get to celebrating my 100th. Post that is.

Who'd have thunk that I'd make it this far this fast? I just kicked this mama off the ground in January!

So to celebrate, here's 100 things about me. GLORIOUS ME!

1) I've bitten my dog. He had it coming. He bit me first.
2) I love Ice cream. An amazing creamy vanilla is my favorite. Coffee Oreo is a great second choice.
3) Growing up I played in the swamp in the back, back yard. Nowadays it's called "wetlands."
4) I keep people. It's pretty rare that I let friends go. They have to work hard at getting away. Then I track them down. Even 15 years later.
5) I can carry color in my head. I can be in a foreign country looking at fabric and know it will match something at home perfectly that I bought a year ago. I am rarely wrong.
6) I did not graduate High School. I did graduate College. Fancy that.
7) I think poetry is better when it rhymes.
8) I can say mean things to people's faces in such a humorous way that they laugh... in the moment.
9) I loathe bananas. The sight of them on TV turns my stomach. The smell of them can drive me from a room.
10) Charles Bronson has the same birthday as me.
11) I like to be in charge of the music.
12) I don't watch horror movies. Ever.
13) My favorite swear word is "bugger."
14) I've been thinking about getting a bike, but haven't told anyone for fear of being held to getting one.
15) A dog taught me how to swim. Dog paddle naturally.
16) I don't phone home while on vacation. No matter how good a time I'm having, I will cry on the phone.
17) I used to be a nail biter. Now I'm nearly free of that habit. Still bite my cuticles. Gross.
18) I speed when I drive.
19) I let others plan my vacations.
20) This is way harder than I thought it would be.
21) I don't get hangovers.
22) I get into ruts in my wardrobe and have been accused of having a "uniform". I happen to think khaki pants with a white shirt is a classic look.
23) My first cat was Minnie, my second cat was her kitten, Fiona. Dewey doesn't count as he belonged to the whole family. Later came Herman.
24) My number one choice of dog growing up was a St. Bernard.
25) I don't clean. I tidy.
26) I can name all the United States in alphabetical order.
27) I can list them off in under 30 seconds.
28) I love a good theme to put music to. Bastille Day, Truckers, Florida, putting in light bulbs... seriously, any excuse.
29) I can't remember the last piece of clothing I paid full price for.
30) I used to be great about remembering birthdays with a card or a call. Then if I forgot one, I would beat myself up over it. It made me miserable. I'm no longer so good about birthdays, but I am not miserable over it.
31) When I pack a house to move I am incredibly anal about it. My fear is that I will die in teh moving truck and someone will come to go through my things and ask, "What kind of person puts EACH and EVERY extension cord in its own ziplock bag?"
32) I quote my father.
"Only a newcomer or a damn fool tries to predict the weather."
"Figures can lie and liars can figure."
"What do you need so many shoes for? You've only got two feet!"
33) On the other hand I channel my mother.
34) When I get a mani/pedi I always get a high buff shine. On my feet as well.
35) I've seen the big gay four in concert; Madonna, Liza, Bette and Cher. Not all at the same time.
36) Now that it's all digital, I take four or five times as many photos so I can choose the best later. I used to take about 2 rolls of film a day on vacation. You can only imagine what I do now.
37) I've also added vacation video clips to my repetiore.
38) The first car I drove was a 1970 Ford Maverick. It was not 1970.
39) I am no longer certain of my "natural" hair color.
40) I am terrible at balancing a bank account.
41) I've shot a gun.
42) I have a tattoo.
43) My favorite drink is water.
44) My favorite cocktail changes... Gin & Tonic or Stoli Vanilla Vodka & Diet Coke at the moment.
45) Guaranteed to cry at the end of Mahogany and when Ron Howard sings about the Wells Fargo Wagon in the Music Man.
46) Not a good speller.
47) Very fast reader.
49) The last time we moved, there were more boxes marked Christmas than office.
50) I've been to 26 different countries which makes that 11% of countries of the world.

51) I HATE, HATE, HATE THE RAIN. I've seen enough rain to last me for the rest of my life.
52) I keep "backstock" of foods. When I run out of mayonnaise, I've still got a fresh jar in the cupboard.
53) My eyes change color from blue to gray to green.
54) I judge books by their cover. I'm good at it.
55) Not inherently craft oriented.
56) My sister taught me how to sew a buttonhole over the phone. The first few were not so good, but by the end they were perfect. (Oh, I was making a shower curtain).
57) Big gay disco club remixes rule.
58) I love those black & white photo booths.
59) I wear out a pair of black loafers about once a year. Very hard on shoes.
60) I am the dog whisperer.
61) Never served on jury duty. (Shit, I hope that doesn't jinx me)
62) When I can't fall asleep, I recite the alphabet forwards then backwards. Then it's off to states and state capitols... zzzzzzzzzzzzz...
63) I clip coupons and then forget to use them.
64) I thought the Broadway show "Titanic" might have had a happy ending. I was wrong.
65) I prefer to text message.
66) I do not “IM”.
67) I broke my arm when I was 12.
68) I was once Miss USA. We drew states at home while we watched on TV. My Miss Kansas Won. I had to relinquish my crown when I moved to Canada.
69) Growing up, I had a fort and a treehouse.
70) I attended my ten year class reunion. I did not attend my 20th. I think I will go to the 30th as I look FABULOUS.
71) I am not friends with anyone famous. But I know people who are.
72) When I was little my mother always made homemade cookies. Then I would trade them for some of those forbidden treats called Oreos!
73) I’ve been to 23 of the United States and Washington DC. Of those, I’ve been to 13 state capitols.

74) I live for my Tivo because now TV lives for me.
75) Rarely do I carry cash. I get mileage points with my credit/debit card.
76) We have a separate full size freezer. Remember, I keep a backstock of food.
77) Je parle fraçais un peu. Hablo español un poco menos. (Just enough German to say filthy things but not understand the response I may get.)
78) I have Platinum Status on American Airlines.
79) Some of my most favorite meals have been cooked by my husband.
80) Can’t drive in the snow. I can however curl up under the glovebox and cry quietly, “We’re doomed. We’re doomed. We’re all going to die.”
81) Don’t play sports.
82) Humor is a good defense.
83) I have two enemies in the world (that I know of) who have done something so hurtful I will never forgive them.
84) In college I decided I didn’t like my signature. I was taking a class on religion and made it a point to sit by other people each class. I would Look over shoulders to shop the capitol “J” for Jesus until I picked my new one. Oh, and I did find it and it’s wonderful.
85) I am ready for my close-up Mr. DeMille.
86) I don’t know the words to every song ever written, but I probably know the words to most of the music you have.
87) I have written a script. (This is L.A. after all)
88) It was for “Adult Entertainment.” (This is L.A. after all)
89) I do not get motion sickness.
90) I shop at least 4 different grocery stores. Each has their own specialty or bargain.
91) I have three “secret” Target stores that no one else seems to shop. I find my endcap bargains there. I have never revealed them.
92) Fewer expensive chocolates preferred over many cheap chocolates.
93) In college my goal was to have enough socks and underwear that I wouldn’t have to do laundry for a whole month. That remains my goal. Currently I could go 30+ days.
94) I have made out in a car. It did have a stick shift.
95) The lowest I’ve weighed as an adult was 160 pounds. I was poor in London. I ate cucumber and cheese sandwiches for dinner and I raced up and down the escalators to the Tube as I was always late.
96) I love the smell of beach fire.
97) I went to a private Quaker college with mandatory chapel attendance. For one term.
98) My brother and I went out between midnight and 4 am and filled my car with lilacs, twice in one night. Brought them home and filled the house with them before anyone woke up. When my mother woke up, she told us she couldn’t breathe from all the pollen.
99) It took my four days to compile all this.
100) I will never do this again.

Saturday, July 28, 2007


How many turtles can you see?
Turtle One,
and Three!

In the front yard is a fountain. In the back yard is the stream with pond at the end holding fish. In the side courtyard (formerly known as the driveway) is the turtle trough.

You don't get to see them up close. They are skittish, fast and have amazing eyesight. All these photos were taken from the bathroom window with a big zoom lens.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Convertible, Sí o No?

What is it about having the top down that encourages people to talk to me?

When you are driving with your windows down do people feel compelled to talk to you?

I drive a convertible and I find myself having conversations with complete strangers at least once a day when I take the car out. Usually stopped at a light, or just as I am leaving a parking space.

"How do you like that Volvo convertible?" I don't. It's a lumber wagon and the service I have received has been less than stellar. I will never own a Volvo again. I am looking at Saab or BMW next time. People are disappointed to hear that. I wish the person we had struck up a conversation with regarding her Volvo convertible before we bought ours had been so forthcoming.

"Do you know where the Walk Of Fame is?" As a matter of fact I do. and you are WAY off. Make a U-turn, they're legal all over California, and go about 5 miles or 15 minutes the other way, turn left on La Brea, then right onto Hollywood. It goes for over 20 blocks on Hollywood blvd.

"Learn how to drive!" SCREW YOU! Turn off your turn indicator for the last 5 miles! Get a license from a state that voted blue!

"(Wolf whistle)" I freely confess I was driving with my shirt off to get more sun. I am going to assume it was meant in a good way and not in an ironic sarcastic way. I did not turn my head to see where it was coming from.

Now that is something else to confess. Predominantly I am driving fully clothed. Then I will choose a sleeveless T-shirt or a tank top. All of those things lead to very unfortunate tan lines within an hour. So if I am getting on a freeway where you and I both know I will be going faster than everybody else, or driving somewhere I won't know anybody or care, I may take my shirt off and go for the burn. No, I am not lifting weights in the car, I am trying to even out the tan in a very unsafe manner. I have very little time and even less sense.

Today when it 105° I finally put the roof up.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Finally, the silence is broken...

Look left. Look right. Clear the kids from the room. Anyone who has NOT read the new Harry Potter book and does NOT want it spoiled for them should skip this post.

Okay, you already know I loved it.

In Book 6, there was a lot of the same old thing happening. Harry don't do that - then he did it anyway. Partial conversations were overhead that always led people to the wrong conclusion. People were killed? No wait, survived. No wait, someone else? No survived. Like a cat and mouse game throughout the book. Annoying. (mind you, I read it anyway.)

But this one was more like a roller coast ride that you bought your ticket for, got in the car, tightened the buckle and then just held on while is zoomed up and down, then zigged and zagged. Not unlike trying to get to your vault in Gringots I presume.

And now for the spoilers.

Can you believe they killed Harry?

Just kidding!
I must say, the part where Voldemort broadcasts his desire for harry to come out in one hour conjured up visions of the Wicked Witch flying over Oz writing "Surrender Dorothy" in the sky. Seriously, I couldn't shake that image for the rest of that chapter. It made me view Voldemort as much more comical that I should have... in a black billowing cape... painted green...

I want to know how Neville got the sword. Last thing I read was the Goblin had it. Did I miss a page?

If you're going to include an epilogue to tie things up, then what happened to Hermione's parents? So much was made about them moving away and forgetting they had a daughter. Then, nothing.

What happened to the Dursley's?

Ok, let's talk in the comments... I believe Carolyn and Rachel are about to bust...

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Christmas in July

Are you the sunshine of my life?
Sometime ago (I can't remember anymore) I planted sunflower seeds in our front yard. Since I am NOT the gardener, and I assume less than half of what I plant will grow, I planted about 100 seeds from 5 different packs. Let me tell you, THEY GREW. Some of them are over 8 feet tall. And now as I look out my front window and see the flowers (and not people staring into the house) I realize that just like Christmas, soon they will be gone and it will all be over. And instead of enjoying how gorgeous they are, they make me melancholy.

On the flip side, the tomatoes that have taken their own sweet time getting ready are about to kick off one heck of a season. We have about 8 tomato pants and so far have just been getting about one tomato a day. COME ONE BIG BOY! GIMME MY 'MATERS!

And now, the house progression from the front yard:

House entrance before we moved in one year ago.

Before the painters, still a year ago.
Midst of painters, primer coat applied.
All done. The house color changes throughout the day depending on the light. The big plant behind the sunflower stem is a tomato plant taking over the garden.
If you click on the photo above, and look in the bottom of the front window, it's Mr. Cooper!
Front yard and house before we moved in a year ago.
Middle of painting, primer was on, sunflowers planted, but just barely sprouted...
Holy crap. You can't see the house anymore! This is the side where they went 8+ feet tall. And since I took this pic, there are twice as many...

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Pottermania sweeps the nation

It's official. I loved the last book. And since I can't talk about the book. I will tell things around the book.

My book arrived by mail on Saturday. Rachel and I both got ours from Amazon and paid the extra to guarantee release date delivery. As I was walking out the door to go the hardware store (more info in a minute) she called to tell me that the postman had climbed the stairs to her 3rd floor apartment to knock on her door and hand deliver the parcel to her. I told her I too was waiting on the postman and was eager to get my grubby paws on the book.

Then we drove by the mail truck on my street. "There it is," I told Lyle, "my book is in there." As we continued to the hardware store, I began to fret. What if they wouldn't leave the book at my house. What if I needed to be there in person to receive it? What if they passed me by and left a notice for pick-up and I couldn't get the book until Monday!?

Lyle offered to turn around. "I'll be okay," I told him as I played out various scenarios in my head.

We returned from hardware world and I could see the mail truck parking in the next block down. If needed, I would run in my flip-flops to retrieve my prize. But wait, what's that on my step? A BOX!!!

Now back to my real life. We had plans to tear out the master bedroom closet this weekend. I had already emptied it out of all out clothes while Lyle took the dogs rollerblading. Then we gutted it of all fixtures and shelves. At the hardware store we purchased hang bar supports, copper pipe for hang bars (I like a pretty closet), lumber for shelving and aromatic cedar planks for lining the back wall.

Task? Book? Task? Book? It was tearing me apart... so we went out for coffee.

By the time I had started my book, Rachel had already called to ask me a question about my reaction to the book. But she was asking about a part of the book I hadn't read. Then I foolishly repeated how Rachel had broken the discussing embargo to Lyle. Who then pointed out that I had just done the same thing to him. CRAP. So all talk ceased right then for good.

That night Rachel came for dinner and we watched the DVD of "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire". Another friend came over who had just seen the new movie but wanted to go back and watch the Goblet movie. As we kept joking about our not talking about what happens in the current book, Lyle committed the next spoiler crime.

"You know, Dumbledore dies in the new book." and he laughed. Because EVERYONE knows he dies in the book before... unless you're not reading the books and you are only watching the movies. In which case you have to wait for the NEXT movie (not the current one).


"Lyle, Tony isn't reading the Harry Potter books. He is only watching the movies. You could possibly be SPOILING the next few movies for him... Tony, Lyle is kidding. He also meant to say that Santa Claus will be in the next movie."

I made Lyle take Rachel home that night so I could catch up to her (click here for her experience reading about Harry Potter). She was 200 pages ahead of me. I stayed up until 3:30 (which is actually pretty normal for me) reading (not the standard activity).

The next day we needed to finish the closet. And then we invited a another friend over for dinner. After dinner, I sat down and finished my book.

Lyle kept telling me to slow down and enjoy the book, to pace myself. Stop reading. Close that damn book... And so on... but I explained that its like watching a thrilling movie and no one says you should just stop the movie and walk away for a day then come back to see the last half hour. I couldn't stop.

Last night I handed the man the book. He started reading in bed about 10 pm. When I went to bed at 3 (see, normal) there he was with the light on! The man usually goes to bed at 9:30 every night!

I told him I didn't want to hear anymore about savoring the book and slowing down to enjoy it.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Hold my calls

If anyone is looking for me, I'll be in the hammock.

Don't tell me anything to spoil it.

I won't share anything either.

Okay, two weeks. Then we'll talk.

Sunday night at midnight - Done.

(Still not discussing it as others in my house will read it next.)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Bassey Belts

A few years back I was watching a concert/documentary with Shirley Bassey (as the subject, not sitting next to me on the sofa), and Dame Shirley Bassey refers to a review someone wrote about her in which they said, "Bassey Belts." I've always thought that would be a good name for a line of pant cinching instruments.

In 2006, Marks & Spencer in Britain had an ad campaign with Shirley Bassey singing Pink's hit "Get This Party Started." It was BRILLIANT.

I've been wishing I could own it ever since then... and now we all can. Miss Bassey has released a new album. Sort of. One new song and a bunch of remixes. I don't care. I must posses it.

Oh, and our dear girl Shirl is 70. I've got to discover her secret...

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Storming the Bastille

storming of the Bastille on 14 July 1789. The storming of the Bastille was seen as a symbol of the uprising of the modern French “nation” and though some opposed marking a day of bloodshed as a national holiday (the 1789 uprising) others noted it should be an observation of the more peaceful anniversary the happened in 1790 and the celebration is all about the unity that the second date holds for France.

Unless you are not French and do not live in France. For us, it is an opportunity to celebrate all things French, hold a summer party and not compete for guests who might be otherwise occupied on the 4th of July. In other words a big gay party.

Lyle and I had been discussing the idea of a Bastille Day party since early April. We will have been in our new digs one year as of July 1st and finally (FINALLY) we felt the house was ready to show off. In May, our friend Ellys phoned asking questions about restaurants to hold a birthday party in for his boyfriend Phillip. After I gave him some suggestions I said, “Oh by the way, save the date of July 14th. We’re having a Bastille Day party and I wanted to invite you both.”

“No way. That is Phillip’s birthday! I am inviting you both.”

“No,” I told him, “you will come to MY party.”

“No,” he told me, “MY party.”



“I Said it first!!!!” (I can be so childish.)

“Girl,” (he can be so gay), “we should COMBINE our parties.”

Et Voilá, it all began.

Party preparations were well underway by Thursday of last week. Gallons of French Vodka (seriously, GALLONS) had been acquired. Over 100 bottles of Kronenburg Beer (French of course) were procured from 4 different BevMo stores in Southern California, mixers, water, mini-quiche, baguettes, grapes, cheese cubes and a birthday cake were all headed for the homestead.

Lyle specifically requested no colored liquids consumed over his carpets. So the mixers were white cranberry juice, grapefruit juice and tonic water.

I built a 6 hour playlist of classic French tunes. If you’re having a French party let me know...
A small sample of which:

Maurice Chevalier - I Love Paris
Josephine Baker - En Avril Paris
Triplettes de Belleville - Belleville Rendez-vous
Brigitte Bardot - Je me donne à qui me plait
Charles Aznavour & Edith Piaf - Le Blue De Tes Yeux
Gilbert Bécaud - Je reviens te chercher
Edith Piaf - Non, je ne regrette rien
Jacqueline Francois - Paris Je T’aime
Pink Martini - Sympathique
Les Damoiselles Du Rochefort - Chanson des jumelles
In-Grid - Tu Es Foutu
Dalida - Laissez-moi dancer
Charles Aznavour - Non Je N’ai Rien Oublié
Francis Lai - Un homme et une femme

To some it may be shocking that I have 6 (plus!) hours of French party appropriate music, but remember I have over 20,000 songs in my i-tunes library. Okay, even I was surprised. I also mixed in some very French feeling lounge music then paired it in i-movie with video clips from French movies or movies with Parisian scenes. Beauty & The Beast (en Français, bien sur), Funny Face (Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire and Kay Thompson est tres magnifique) , Moulin Rouge, Amelie, The Devil Wears Prada and the James Bond flick View To A Kill (or as I called it, that one with the Duran Duran song and Grace Jones jumping off the Eiffel Tower).

So with a video music multi-media presentation on our hands, we hauled out the projector TV and screen from the living room and installed it on the patio. Oh yeah, the whole party took place outside.

Now let’s back up just a little and give out some thanks to people. Ellys came over Thursday night (in secret) and helped prep the space with furniture arrangement, bar tables, curtain hanging (oh yeah, I borrowed a bolt of red velvet drapery from a friend and we wrapped the outdoor patio in red drapery. That would also help dampen the noise bleeding over to the neighbors- strangely no one else in the neighborhood seems to consider that when they throw parties or have blow out fights where I can hear them. Anyway... On Friday I picked up my brother Scott at the airport and he began his indentured servitude of following me around and running errands for Lyle and I. Including building the bar we bought at Target, additional beer pick up, ice run and so much hand holding. Merci!

From the moment you arrived your party experience began. The driveway was stantioned off so no cars could park there. Over the archway of the driveway hung a large French flag, candelabras flanked the sides of the entrance and a red carpet was laid down for you to walk across.

Down left side of the fence hung red crushed velvet fabric interspersed with large gold fleur-de-lis. Above you, ribbons of bright white LED Christmas lights led you back towards the bar, and the party space.

Ellys hired a cute bartender to serve the guests and freed us all to mingle. We brought in our housekeeper to man the kitchen, keep the food moving to the table outdoors, keep stragglers from touring the house unattended and clear things as needed. Again, very freeing as owners of the host house.

The invitation said we started at 8 p.m. This being L. A. that meant no one showed up until 8:45.
Marie Antoinette greeted the arrivals with a wave of her fan and photos were plenty. If only they were also in focus. I am hoping to get some more photos in the next few days from other party attendees.

At 9:15, the birthday boy was brought in, blindfolded to our back deck. Or as it was now being called, The Stage. Our borrowed Klieg lights were flicked on the blindfold was removed and Phillip was blinded by light and still had no idea where he was. As the shock wore off and the realization downed on him that he was practically in Paris for his birthday, a 3 minute birthday video played on the screen (9:38 on the dot).

At 10 o’clock the Klieg lights were once again turned on for the stage and three performers took their places for a ten minute dance spectacular. Ellys used to dance with a troupe and hired us a phenomenal group of women to perform on our back deck, er, brand new stage.

Though we had invited the neighbors just North (who would most be affected by the lights and noise) to come by for the party, they didn’t come by. However during the show, I did see one of them poke her head past the back curtains and take a gander. Then the back door came open and she threw something out into her garbage... and kept the door open and watched from the safety of her back door. The next day, she and Lyle were exchanging pleasantries over the back fence and she told him we had “very pretty ladies” at our party.

One of our guests mentioned how sorry she was that she had missed the performance. She had arrived about 10:15. I told her the invite said special performance at 10 p.m. It went off at EXACTLY 10 p.m. I run a prompt party!

Show completed, birthday cake presented and guests soaked in booze, I could finally relax and enjoy.
Part of the beauty of pre-planning all the video and music is you can light a party, build a party, and then kill the party. At 11:30 the music turned mellow and people starting bidding us adieu. The video stopped being moving pictures and went to one steady photo. Our circle shrunk to about 10 of us. And that is when we started talking trash about everyone who had attended.

That’s not true. We finally put our feet up and sat down! We had been running in the 90˚+ heat all day long and it was bliss to stop and relax. Phillip opened a few gifts and before you knew it, it was 2 a.m.

A few people who weren’t able to attend, sent their deepest regrets and said they’d make the next party. Lyle told them he’d keep that in mind in five years when we considered doing this again.

It took all the next day to tear down what had taken three days to put up, but what a good time we had.

Happy Bastille Day!

Sunday, July 15, 2007


I owe you, dear blog, one entry about the Bastille Day Party... but I am too tired to do it right now.

Day after party:
House - cleaned.
Supplies - stowed.
Yard - almost normal.
Sugar buzz - fading.
Dogs - sleeping.
Overnight guests - flown.
Tomorrow - tanning.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Canada Day!

So, Canada Day was July 1st and I am just getting to it now. No, I was not hung over on too many Molson Canadians.

At my house July is very busy. We kick off with Canada Day on the first, then comes July 4th for America and forging on we celebrate Bastille Day on July 14th. I guess this is what happens when you marry an American to a Canadian who both love France and any excuse to have a themed event.

I have two favorite songs for Canada Day. “Canada Day, Up Canada Way” by Stompin’ Tom Connors and “Ontario Sucks” by the Arrogant Worms. The video of "Canada Way, Up Canada Way" is not so good, but just close your eyes and imagine you are in bed when this is the sogn I play for you first thing in the morning.

I actually do not have a problem with Ontario. But as the Arrogant Worms point out in their ditty, they love Alberta. And as the husband is from Alberta, I must muster my spousal pride. Okay the truth is it’s just so Canadian of a song that it makes me giggle.

For the Fourth of July we were 8 people at mi casa for Weiner Wednesday. I normally like a Weiner Weekend sometime in the summer, but since July 4th fell on a Wednesday, I had to re-title it. What a Weiner Wednesday involves is hot dogs. Once a year (and only ONCE) I crave hot dogs. After I’ve had them I swear them off as disgusting and refuse to even think about them... until next year. We do it all. Potato salad, baked beans, cucumber with onion and dill salad, sauerkraut and this year a chocolate zucchini cake with ice cream. As a culinary side note, I serve my potato salad with cheap caviar. I love the extra salt it provides and the eggs pop like champagne in your mouth while you are eating potato salad with hot dogs for god’s sake!

We had not planned on any fireworks this year. We didn’t have any last year. They are illegal in the city of Los Angeles, but you can go slightly south to other cities and purchase them legally. You’re just not supposed to set them off when you get home.

Last year we didn’t’ do fireworks because we had just moved in... That day. I remember everyone had already gone to bed by 9 and I was the only one awake when I heard fireworks last year and realized I could see parts of the fireworks from Dodger Stadium by way of my front living room window. Between two houses, above their roofs, below the canopies. Not the same as standing under them and feeling that blast, but pretty nonetheless.

This year our friend Brad brought a LARGE box of fireworks. Lyle was delighted.

I’ve posted a montage together for you. Oh joy, 7 minutes of backyard fireworks to view. You will notice the ladder at the beginning. We discovered this trick many years ago. TO make the cheap stuff (or expensive home stuff) look bigger, you place the firework on top of a tall ladder and get an additional 6 feet of sparkles falling to the ground. And it begins with Kate Smith, cause ya' gotta love her version of "God Bless America".

Of course I was worried that the neighbors would call the cops and we’d all be busted. But even though we filled the neighbor’s yard with smoke, smoke, and more smoke, no police came by.

After fireworks, as the last few people were leaving, the fireworks started at Dodger Stadium. Five of us stood in the front yard and enjoyed the sights from afar.

As for Bastille day... Just you wait... (No, we are not going to France)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Bad Blogger, no biscuit!

Forgive me readers for I have sinned. It's been over a week since I wrote anything!

I have no good reason other than I just didn't want to. I think I've been feeling a little anti-social (not tear down street signs and paint graffiti, just the opposite of social) and that has rolled over from my in-person life, to this on-line life.

And since I have not fully shed that moment, I probably won't write much more...

But I can't leave you hanging. I have a special treat.

A very good friend of mine wrote me what I think was the funniest e-mail in quite some time. I asked him if I could share it here and he never replied.

So I wont' tell you his name. But I will tell you that if you combined the flair of Auntie Mame, the style of Edna E. Mode and the distaste that Kathy Griffin has for children, stirred them up in a gay man's body... Voilá!

Here is the missive I received. Please, stop guessing who it is. If you're guessing you already know and it so unattractive on you.

It is Saturday in Moscow and the sun is shinning! There are no bread lines or women waiting for their children. I am in the newly developed area to see and be seen in. The gay bois are in full regalia of Gucci, Pucci and Fiorucci. Short shorts are the pièce de résistance with a plunging V neck.

Yoko Ono is having a show and I went this morning. If you can believe it, no crowds. I and one other person, Frank a cute German, were the only ones there. Russians don't understand high art or Yoko as I do. I love her!!! Yes I have the Yoko remix mp3.

My trip to Paris was fantastic. It was a full flight. Tons of teens going to Paris for the first time. Their passports were sooo shiny and new. I met. group of girls with their gay. A cute teen boy with a Vidal Sassoon bob and skinny jeans. They asked all kinds of questions and I was only too happy to advise.

My list of guidelines for your first trip to Paris, for cute teens:
1) Always look cute on the plane. Being cute and stylish gets you better seating.
2) High heels! You can always take them off once seated. If you are running to catch a plane, you are more likely to get a golf cart to the gate.
3) Grey charcoal for the eyes. You disguise the jet lag better that way and it looks like you were up all night doing Heroin. Hey, it works for Kate.

Once in Paris:
Do not buy souvenirs for friends and family. For one your friends are already jealous and talking shit about you. Oh, she thinks she is all that because she went to Paris, blah, blah, blah.
Besides the Eiffel Tower key chain will end up in a drawer or at a charity sale for tourretes.
Save all your money for an afternoon at the Hotel Coste or Park Hyatt. Hang out in the lobby drinking tea or cappuccinos. You can catch all the celebs. Then off to Colette for music and a little trinket for your self.

Your friends would really prefer to hear how you spent your day with fashionistas and cute French actors. Lose the class group and blame it on distraction. There was much more but I will have to share with you later.

I love influencing the Young!!