Friday, July 31, 2009


Dear Deer- That-Hit-my- Car-on-New-Year's-Day-and-Whose-Memory-Still-Haunts-Me-Like-an-Episode-of-the-Ghost Whisperer-

Why can't I quit you? Why is that every time I get in my car to drive somewheres I see you smashing into my grill at 80 clicks an hour? For the love of Pete, it was 8 months ago!

I thought I did everything right. I gave up the car we murdered you in. I made peace with your Maker. So why do I see you everywhere? Maybe, you have the same agent as Amy Adams. She's everywhere, too.

Maybe this will help. I'm sorry, we hit you. I wish it were otherwise. Thank you for not smashing into the windshield and killing my family.

Now go away. Now.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Summer Reading

This week plans to be another rainy one so I am catching up on my summer book pile. It is rather large but the weather has helped me to whittle it down. Here is a list of a few books I've read thus far this summer:

Perfection by Julie Metz - Good memoir. A must-read for anyone who is interested in the vagarities of marriage.

City of Thieves by David Benioff- Nice poolside book....if you're into WWII fables.....which I am!

Danny the Champion of the World by Roald Dahl - Have read this 5 times now so decided to read it to the kids. Sad and beautiful. Opened up a world of questions for them. They lurved it. Maybe they`ll read it four more times to catch up!

A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick - Awful. Over-written. Finished it, though.

Next up: The Book of Negroes. Get reading!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Weekly Salad

Twelve years of marriage and counting. Twelve more years of salad days.

Here's the weekly salad:

Mix wedges of tomatoes and peaches, add slivers of red onion, a few re-pepper flakes and cilantro. Dress with olive oil and lime juice. Astonishing!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Makes me Wanna Holla!

During last night's Presidential news conference, the President was asked to weigh in on the controversy that has been ignited following the wrongful arrest of Henry Louis Gates, renowned scholar and head of the African American Studies department at Harvard university.

For those of you who weren't aware, the Cambridge police were called to Mr. Gates’s house after a report of a robbery in progress. Mr. Gates, saying he was jimmying open a damaged front door, said he told the police he lived in the house. Still, the police report said he was arrested for “loud and tumultuous behavior in a public space.” He was held in police custody for four hours, after which disorderly conduct charges against him were dropped. Mr. Gates said he was the victim of racial profiling and has demanded an apology but the police officer involved has said he has nothing to apologize for.

Thank you, Mr. Gates. Fuck you, Cambridge Police Department.

Let's leave aside the fact that the man was arrested in his own home(!?), how sad is it that there can be a black man in the White House and that this sort of foolishness can still happen? Dang. It is awesome to be black, y'all. But sometimes? It's terribly inconvenient.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Silent Partner

As many of you may or may not know, among my husband Tim's many talents is a finesse with a camera. He takes it everywhere with him and snaps pics when the spirit moves him. Most of the pictures you see on this site, in fact, are his. Nice, huh? Cheap, too.

My favorites, of course, are his pictures of the kids (like the one above of Xenia's first lemonade stand) but I also love his landcapes. Hurray for the family photogs, out there! You ARE appreciated.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Not Entirely by the Numbers

When I got married, I was told to prepare for the hundreds of little secret compromises that I would have to undertake. Come on you've read about them (or seen them on any number of lame fat-guy-skinny-wife sitcoms): the toilet seat that never gets put down, the swearing at traffic, the non-stop finagling for golf time. In my case, there were relatively few, with the possible exception of the giant television set in my basement whose sole purpose seems to be 'round the clock screenings of Carl Sagan's Cosmos.

But for all the viewings of geeky docs, there is my husband's burden: he lives with a woman with quirky - nay,whimsical - decorating taste.

Most of my decorating projects are inspired by my weekly jaunts to the auction (Just to see what's there. Not to buy anything....) And while most are inspired by antique rugs or jewelery, I seem to be drawn to old, now-unusable everyday objects that can be re purposed into fanciful ephemera (nice Art News-speak, huh?)

Here is my latest. I found the numbers at a salvage place about an hour north of town. I fell in love with them and my friend Krissy helped me to find a few more at the local big boxes. Needless to say, I love it, my friends who come by love it. And my husband? Well, let's just say that he has retreated to his man room to kibbitz with the ghost of Carl Sagan.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


This afternoon, I read an excellent profile of Nora Ephron in the New Yorker in which she referred to herself as a "feeder - not a serious cook". I read that and I instantly thought, Yes! Me, too, Nora. Me, too!

I lurv cooking but I would never refer to myself as a serious cook. Ina Garten. Nigella Lawson. Colonel Saunders. All serious. Me? Not so much.

Not that I don't love food. 'Deed I do. But to me a serious cook is a bit of an effete. They are the types who only use premium olive oils, choose only the finest meats and produce, turn their noses at breads from the grocery store . I am not above eating something that has been dripping from a spit for two days. I once ate a pizza the had fallen off the counter, face down onto the floor. Face down! Not one of my finer moments.

There is nothing more satisfying than sitting at a table burdened with dishes you spent all day preparing and watching as the people fill their plates and mouths. Again. Again. Again.

A feeder's dream come true.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Monday, July 6, 2009


The last few days, we enjoyed one of those perfect weekends- friends converged, the wine and food flowed, there were no kid conflicts, the weather cooperated. Perfection. What could have gone wrong?

Well, here's something: our cat disappeared for 2 days.

Now, I have never been much of a pet fan having not grown up with them. It was my father's belief that human animals remained indoors, all others out, and I bought it hook, line and sinker. My husband's life, however, has always included pets with dogs bookending the front half, cats the other. To his credit, he never actively lobbied for a pet but when we moved to the country, I did notice him staring longingly at other friends animals. Sigh, his eyes would say, his hands petting, petting, petting the animal a beat or two longer than most would.
So when he and my daughter lured a stray cat into our home several Halloween's ago, I was essentially non-committal. I saw the pure, un-adulterated joy on their faces and made a point of not voicing my displeasure. It was their cat, I had decided, not mine. I would be impervious to the cat's presence and would do what was required to keep it alive - feeding, watering. In short, I would be a human can-opener.

But guess what? I love this damn thing! Guess who let's him out at 2:33 AM every morning to let it out to murder mice? Moi. Guess whose lap it sits on every morning while e-mail is being checked? Moi. Guess whose keyboard he's stepping on as we speak? You feel me.

So when our friends came with their docile dog this weekend I assumed that the cat would sum up the situation and see it for what it was: a temporary situation. You aren't being replaced, Lucy, I tried to tell her with my eyes when she spied the dog and arched her back menacingly. Don't you see ? This is part of the social contract: friends come, you accommodate. Understand?

I guess not because she took off. And we pretended not to be bothered by it.

"She'll be back," my husband kept saying every time he saw me looking anxiously outside.
"Are you sure?" I kept asking.
"Yeah," my husband kept saying. "Of course."

The way he said it made me not believe.

And then the guests left and I started to worry in earnest until I heard the kids yelling from outside that they had found Lucy. She had found safe harbour under some giant hostas near the back of the house. She's never really left, I thought as I ran towards her. She was always close to home.

I ran outside. I gave her a hug. She made her body strangely rigid and finally, after a few awkward moments, meowed in protest. Let me go, she seemed to be saying, and feed me, God Damn it! Let's get this place back to normal!

And next time you bring a dog here, leave the food where I can find it. That's your job.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Laughing on a Rainy Day

Originally uploaded by cxg231

It's a rainy day and I'm looking for ways to get cheered up, so I headed over to one of my favorite sites, Old Jews Telling Jokes ( Too. Damn. Funny.

One of my favorite jokes on the site is a cat joke. Now, normally I steer clear of pet jokes but this one made me chuckle a wee bit:

I know a woman who sleeps with cats.
Now ask me who it is.
(the person asks, Who is it?)
Mrs. Katz!
and sometimes Mrs. Nussbaum

Funny, non?

Pay this site a visit. It's worth the trip.