Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Wahoo! Wednesday - Wordless Winged Wahoos, Some Blogger Magic and a Freaked-Out Cat

That's the wordless winged wahoo part - lots of fluttering going on, down here. And, now . . .

Blogger Magic! A mere 6 months after the fact, I have finally managed to view the two comments that have been lingering in my comment section without showing up when I hit the link to approve comments. Maybe the Blogger Fix-it People have been immersed in fixing whatever kink tied up such stuck comments and that explains the weird stretchy sidebar goings-on. Who knows. But, anyway -

Andi - sorry for just now seeing a comment you made in February. The answer was "yes". Actually, I already did what you asked me to do. Suitably vague, you think?

And, Carrie K. - I just approved a comment from March. It made me laugh. I'd posted a photo of my eldest on a chess board in France and you said, "He's so tiny!" So, thanks for the belated laugh!

She was really just lonely. Apparently. Our Miss Spooky kept whining at me, last night. She fussed and she yowled and she complained. I figured she was just hungry. Now and then she goes completely nutso and I have to try four different kinds of food before she finds one that she's willing to eat. But, when I fed her, trudged off to take a bath and heard vigorous scratching and howling at the bedroom door, it became apparent that I simply misunderstood my fur person. I hurried a little and let the kitty into the bedroom, hefted her little body onto the bed and gave her a hug (yes, she actually kind of likes hugs) and a good, long neck rub with a bit of soothing talk. That did it. She gave me the blinky-eyed look of contentment, purred heartily, curled up in a ball and . . . well, she sort of snored. Or talked in her sleep - it was an interesting sound. Anyway, I guess I need to give the cat a little more attention.

I got an interesting mass message from one of the band parents, today, saying the fund-raising food orders were in and "Please send your children a text to remind them to pick up [the orders] before they leave school." Does this strike anyone else as bizarre? First of all, the kids aren't supposed to have cell phones turned on, while at school. Second, it strikes me as odd that anyone would assume that every child carries a phone and every parent is willing to pay for text messaging. We loan a phone to our child when he needs one. Text messages are verboten. Neither of us sees any reason to pay extra for texting when a call will suffice. Are we unique? I'm just curious. My son and I had, in fact, already communicated in the old-fashioned way . . . in person. He informed me that the orders would be available to pick up, last night, and we came up with a slightly altered after-school plan. No biggie.

Bookwise: I'm back to reading God is My Co-Pilot and it's getting exciting. The first half was a bit of a yawn - the usual background and training (apparently, this is typical in a war-pilot memoir), followed by a whole lot of hauling mail and a few stories with really, really detailed geography. And, if you've been following the news about Miss Teen South Carolina, you know that we "U.S. Americans" are terrible at geography because we lack maps. So true. I did own an atlas. But, it was unfortunately a total loss after we were flooded. Since I no longer own a decent world atlas and Google Earth is not handy in my reading corner, I'm probably not learning as much as I should from the author's descriptions of his flights over Asia, but it's definitely become gripping since he ceased flying transports and began flying a fighter plane. More on that, later. And, I'll try to get to reviews of the last three books I finished, soon.

Wednesday is almost over and we're about to chug on into Thursday. Hope everyone had a terrific day!

Bookfool who could use a nice world atlas for Christmas


  1. I want a fur person friend. Just for hugging.

    I never got much into texting until I moved to Italy and texted my husband while he was in Germany. It was so much cheaper than calling.

  2. I have a theory that the biggest problem with cell phones in school is the parents,not the students.(well, they're at fault too) But seriously? That's the problem right there.
    Love the butterfly pictures. Beautiful.

  3. The dragonfly is magnificent! All of the photos are wonderful, but the dragonfly is so dramatic!

  4. Anonymous8:47 AM

    Aww. Poor Miss Spooky. Our kitties love being man-handled, as long as we're willing to let them go or put them down as soon as they want it. So we pay careful attention to those signals, and do lots of scritching and petting and hugging and snuggling.

    It can be a trial though, sometimes, keeping up with them. Not to mention figuring out what they want at any given time!

  5. Nikki,

    I wish I could send you a fur person. They're good for hugging and talking to and having a little warmth nearby.

    That's interesting that texting was cheaper than calling. We're set up with 50 text messages for a set fee and then they're 10 cents each, after, but that's for our eldest son - he pays for his service; he's just on our plan because it's cheaper (till he graduates - then he's on his own). Last month he spent an extra $20 on text messages to people who are in town. Seems kind of silly to me when a phone call doesn't add to the bottom line.


    I think a good portion of problems in schools have to do with parents. But, yeah, I think in this case we're seeing an interesting take on a simple communication issue - speaking in person works just fine.

    Thanks. We've had lots of butterflies juicing up on our rotten pears. They taste awful, so we're letting the wildlife have the pears. In fact, we saw a possum chomping down, last week. That was actually a little creepy. :)

  6. Les,

    I approved your message, but it's not showing up!! So, okay, you said this:

    Oooh! The Mirror is very good! Kind of a time travel thing. I read it several years ago and have wanted to read it again. I think you'll enjoy it a great deal. Nice list of books, by the way, although I didn't much care for The Mermaid's Chair. Oh, and I agree with Andi. You are quite the fast reader!!

    I think someone recommended The Mirror to me, after last year's RIP - can't remember, but it might have been you. :) I'm really a slow reader; I just haven't felt like doing much. Might as well read.

    I need to get a poppet, too! I love the blue, but the red would go with my MiniCooper. Decisions, decisions...

    Hmmm, that's a rough one. Why not just get both? LOL

  7. Jenclair,

    Thank you. I'll tell you what really jumped out at me, when I got that particular photo loaded - that dragonfly is quite a bit bigger than the little lizard babies that have been running around in the garden! He's a big fellow!


    I think Miss Spooky was feeling needy because my afternoon schedule is so hectic. I was gone all afternoon and a bit of the evening. Nobody else was home, either, and she's a pretty sociable critter. She likes being talked to, more than anything - a little petting is usually enough, each day, and lots and lots of lap time is required in the winter! She's more solitary than our Sunshine was, so we're still working on finding a balance with just one cat in the house. It's obvious that she does like being an only cat, though, so that's good.

  8. Aww, poor Miss Spooky. Our boys can be pretty demanding for attention at times.

  9. We are addicted to texting at our house, but that's because we ended up with a great unlimited texting plan, so we just go all out. My two teenagers love communicating this way over a real phone call, so I join them and text back. However, I can see how it would be weird to assume that everyone does it this way and has unlimited texting options.

    Way cool pictures!

  10. Nat,

    I think part of the deal is that we're still adjusting, here. Spooky didn't like Sunshine and tended to retreat to high spots for her naps - not surprising because up until the last year or so, Sunshine had a tendency to leap on her (unprovoked) and sink her claws into poor Miss Spooky's hips. Now, she doesn't have to worry about "that other cat" (I'm sure she thought of her that way) so her habits have changed a bit. We'll get there. I really love it that she wanted attention. :)


    We're atypical in many ways - I'm still home and probably will be till my youngest graduates or begins to drive himself to school; and we don't ever buy the latest electronic gadgets. It always strikes me as odd that my eldest (who is a senior in college) doesn't seem to realize that it's actually possible to communicate without using text messaging, ever! He actually tried texting us and we never responded. I think we both find each other entertaining.

    And, thank you. :)

  11. Gorgeous pics!

    That Miss Carolina made me laugh! Poor thing. First, the US Americans then the lack of maps and then she just went off about South Africa? Huh? Very entertaining but she must have been mortified.

  12. I heartily agree - the presumption that everyone is willing and able to text message their kid is ridiculous, not to mention that everyone would read the email before the end of the school day.

    I love how cats find a way to demand the attention they want!

  13. Chris,

    Thank you. :)

    I thought that video was a horrifying. She was obviously nervous, but she'd also plainly been coached to use certain filler words and ended up sticking them together at random. It's anyone's guess what she really meant! My husband said, "Oh, wow. I'm going to have nightmares," after I showed it to him. LOL

  14. Dewey,

    Your comment disappeared after I approved it, just like Les's!! Weird! Here's what you wrote:

    Where are these poppets coming from? I see them all over!

    Two of the books in each of your stacks are on my TBR Mountain. So is Fever. Looking forward to your review of that. I have to read it soon; it's a library book.

    I love Miss Spooky! She looks a bit like my cat.

    I'm pretty sure poppets are only available at eBay when the artist has a supply available - usually, several times a year. Here's the author's Poppet Planet site:

    Chris at Stuff as Dreams are Made On posts a link, whenever they're available.

    Fever is excellent! I've got some things to finish up, first, but I hope to get some reviews written, today. However, I'm about to have to shut down. The thunder is getting more ominous, every minute.

    Miss Spooky says, "Thank you." What's your kitty's name?

  15. Suzi,

    Thank you. I feel better, now, knowing we're not alone in thinking that was a strange presumption. :)

    Cats are so fun, aren't they? Our Sunshine used to tell me if the bath water wasn't just right and warn me if I let it run too long (because I'm extraordinarily forgetful). I love that they can be so insistent.

  16. Um, I've never even sent a text message. My husband texts with his friends but I don't really see the point. I have problems with my hands and the last thing I need to do communicate in that way. I'm just wondering at what age it will be assummed my child has a cell phone.

  17. The cell phone thing is definitely weird. Although, she probably fall into that category of people that buy their 9-year-olds (like my cousins) cell phones because they WANNNNNT them. Bah!

    Love the vague answer. I have no idea what I asked. lol


  18. Tara,

    I've never sent a text message, either. I don't even know how. But, I only call a few people and if they're busy or out, I leave a message or call back later. I'm really never in such a big hurry to communicate, you know?

    Kids with cell phones seem to get younger all the time. I've seen little ones - probably no more than 9 years old - talking on phones or carrying them around. It wasn't till last year, though (freshman year of high school) that my son started to comment that "everyone" has a phone. I am not swayed. He can borrow ours when he really needs one.


    So, I'm typing my reply to Tara and saying I've seen kids around the age of 9 with cell phones . . . and there's your reply. LOL I can't even begin to imagine why anyone would give in to a 9-year-old's request for a cell phone. For one thing, they have a serious tendency to lose things at that age.

    You asked me if I wanted to do a book tour, after I posted photos from our trip to Oxford. You must have had some fairy dust, that day. Poof! Your wish came true. I volunteered without ever getting your message!

  19. As a teacher I wish we could ban cell phones from even being at school. Our kids are suppose to have them off during class, but they still viberate and kids duck their heads and peak at them. Drives me crazy!

    Your photos always amaze and bring delight. What a wonderful time when we can enjoy nature up-close and beautiful.

  20. Booklogged,

    They attempted to ban cell phones in the high schools, here, and I think it was pretty much a disaster. Now, the kids are allowed to carry cell phones, but they're not to be seen or heard. If one buzzes or the child pulls it out, a teacher is allowed to temporarily confiscate. From my perspective, not having a child with a phone is just one less thing to worry about.

    Thank you. I've been indoors for so long, due to the heat, that it's been really great getting outdoors, again! We dropped to the 90's, this week, and then all the way down to the 80's, today!! Wahoo!

  21. Bookfool -

    That dragonfly picture is the coolest! I know I've said it before but your photos really are spectacular!

    I'm reading a book called "Generation Me" because my soon to be ex-boss thinks it will help me to understand the students. All I'm learning is the 15 - 34 year olds are a bunch of whiny babies made that way by their schools, their television shows, their movies, their books, and most especially their parents. You can add things like this text message to the list.

    Maybe Miss Spooky was missing her feline counterpart. Even if they didn't get along all that well, I'm sure it must be lonely for her.

    And in defense of poor Miss Carolina - Michigan (I think) has told teachers not to refer to Americans as Americans. Because Canada and Mexico are part of North America too. Stupidity runs rampant in public education these days.

    Or, it could simply be my mood. Your pictures were a great boost, I can tell you that much.


  22. CJ,

    Thanks. My dragonfly appreciates the admiration (and probably would like me to stop thinking of him as "mine").

    On the whiner thing . . . I think those whiny reality shows are part of the problem, definitely, as are permissive parents - it seems to me that an awful lot of parents work and then just throw money and toys at their kids, expecting stuff to fill the gap. My eldest (about to turn 23) is of the instant-gratification mindset, but he's frequently disappointed because we're not. He's perpetually broke, though, because he works but he spends his money as fast as he earns it.

    I think Miss Spooky was missing me. I'm usually around most of the day and with kiddo's hectic fall schedule I'm often gone from early afternoon to mid-evening, now. She's extremely sociable and likes to stick close to her humans; whereas, she stayed as far away from Sunshine as possible!

    Okay, so what are Americans supposed to call themselves? I've heard that argument, before, but it seems to me that there's a pretty plain distinction between South Americans, Central Americans, Canada (yeah, the other North Americans) and the U.S. - we've been known as "Americans" for an awful long time. Why confuse the issue?

    Oh, good, I'm glad my pics were a boost. That's always nice to know!

  23. Well, here in another part of North America, we call you Americans. Calling you Staters or USers doesn't quite sound right. But we always say, if going South, that we're going to 'the States'.

  24. Chris,

    That's what I was thinking . . . Staters? USers? Statites? Everything else besides "Americans" sounds either awkward or just flat ridiculous. BTW, we just love our Canadian neighbors. :)

  25. Nancy, you said, "She gave me the blinky-eyed look of contentment..."

    I read a book about cats which explained THAT is how cats say "I like/love you," by slowly closing their eyes. Really? Okay, so I tried it on our two cats. BOTH cats were very surprised, as though I had suddenly learned how to speak. But they both seemed rather pleased. Maybe, just maybe, that really IS what it means. Try it and let me know what happens.

  26. Bonnie,

    I read that years ago and I do it all the time. Both of my cats have "replied" to my slow blinks; and, of course, Miss Spooky still does.

    I also subject my poor cat to a lot of hugging. About a day or two before Sunshine died, she got up from her spot beside me on the floor to retreat for a nap in her quiet place. Before she left, I gave her a gentle hug. She stood in place, turned her head, blinked slowly at me and just stayed put. It was obvious that she really appreciated that bit of warmth and affection. So, I gave her a second hug. She blinked at me, again, and walked on. I treasure that memory. We had some really great moments in her last days.


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