Procrastination (But I Digress)

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

I get my news on Comedy Central

Well, the windows are in and look great. It wasn't the worst construction work that's been done at our house, but they won't medal either. Adam helped me deliver the four giant boxes of PTA newsletters for Hoover (carrying two at a time when I could barely lift one). That job is done for a month. Julieanne told Patricia that I begged for the job. I did tell Julieanne that I would do any job she wanted, but I balked when it was such a biggie. It's not that bad though--who knew the s__t would hit the fan at work while I was carting newsletters all over town. I got back to work to chaos that is going to weigh me down for a while (but hopefully not ruin my relaxing and wonderful last vacation of the summer).

We had the final meeting of the young democrats this morning--the luncheon we have been planning is next week. At one point one of the gals said that she's trying to decide if she should make sponsorship cards for the tables even though not everyone at the table will be from that sponsor's group. I offered my opinion that they shouldn't do that because it will lead to confusion. She said "This is not a debate" rudely and moved on to a different topic. Well that shut me up. I guess I'm just not cut out for politics.

It's ABWA tonight--I've got a lot of balls in the air again, but I'm not looking forward to being in the thick of things. It's been a pretty nice lazy summer. I think I could really get used to lazy. I haven't been to the gym in weeks. Very bad.

I heard a news report on NPR this morning that said, many people get their news on late night comedy shows--that's me. Give me John Stewart over Peter Jennings anyday. TTFN

Monday, August 23, 2004

The new Windows are Here

So today was the first day of installation for my new windows. The most important ones to replace were for Adrienne and the girls' rooms because the sills leak, but the guys said those were too hard, so they started with all the rest. There are 18 windows, two large bay windows and sliding glass door in the house. I replaced 10 windows and unfortunately the difference is striking. The outside trim on the house is painted green (well something like green, more turquoise, but not really), but the new windows are white. White vinyl. Against an off white house. Stark difference to the rest of the windows. Anyway, they are very nice windows and we're hopefull they will spell the end of our cricket infestation, who must be trooping in some crack in the windows by the dozens for all the racket we hear in the house by them.

In other news, my cell phone is dead. Well not really dead--ill. It says enter code, so Cingular gave me the code, but it won't let me make any calls--it says STOP with a little stop sign. Cingular hears that it's a two year old nokia and smuggly says, you need a new phone, that one's too old to fix. Two years old and off the donor list. That's just sad. Well my next phone is going to be a pda with a phone, but the price is still up there and the technology's kind of new. We'll see.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Weekends are Computer Free

Last week Erika sent a blog with snoring that wasn't there until after I had left the office on Friday night and then another with a Thank you to me for the Curious George book which leads me to warn weekend bloggers that I am not at my computer on the weekends. Alas, I fall into that apathetic hole of not really understanding how to access my e-mail or the internet at home--at the office, I just touch the keyboard and it appears. And I am not willing to be on an AOL account or pay for my own account, so I only have access to the computer on weekdays. Occasionally, I make a special trip into the office on the weekends, but not so much anymore. Occasionally, Mary or Dad offers to show me their computer and Adrienne also makes sure that if I'm around she leaves on Erika's blog for me, but for the most part blogging and e-mails done on the weekend are saved up in my computer to make Monday mornings particularly delightful filled with new pictures and updates. I'm already looking forward to it.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

There's always something to write about

I'm still working on the book about Ben Franklin. One of my favorite quotes was his description of a political foe as having an "accommodating conscious"--that is so classic. Then John Adams said of BF, that in France he has a monopoly of reputation and an indecency in displaying it. He drove puritanical John Adams crazy. BF was quite the ladies man, although Isaacson seems to feel it was just flirtations. From the sound of it, Bill Clinton had nothing on him. And his illegitimate son, William was the govenor of New Jersey who broke with BF to side with England in the Revolutionary War. How unlucky is New Jersey even after all these years. So William has an illegitimate son and I just got to the part where Temple (William's son) is off to have illegitimate children--one with his Father's wife's younger sister--whom he then abandons. So the child, Ellen is raised by her Grandparents, who are also her aunt and uncle. You can just hear old Ben chuckle Se La Vive.
Isaacson also has the benefit of having the notes from the spies in France who wrote about everything BF did. Isaacson believes that BF knew there were spies, but that he didn't know who they were, so he only said what he wanted everyone to hear. Isaacson says that the notes from the spies certianly made things easier for England, but it doesn't appear that the information was timely enough to cause any casualties. In fact, BF's able to play England and France off of each other by privately discussing being very open to offers of both, all the while having no intention of making consessions, making both sides think the other was winning in negotiations with America. He saw the treaty with France as pretty much a gift with no consessions by America (although Adams was more pragmatic and thought we were giving France this great stratigic position against England. As if.)
I skipped to the back and read the distribution of his estate. He gave money to the various cities to make loans to business people with specific instructions on how the money was going to grow over time to be a hugh endowment. It came close to his calculations in Boston, but Philidelphia was far short of his calculation. Some critics in Philidelphia claimed that Boston only lent money to rich people while Philidelphia lent money as intended to businesses that needed it (and therefore were not always able to pay it back).
The picture on the front of the book has a slight grin that makes it easy to imagine a twinkle in his eye and great amusement at posterity.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

I Won, I Won, I Won

A couple of weeks ago I was talking to Gloria (Urs' sister) and I asked her if she was getting out to bingo. No, she said, she hadn't been in weeks. The lady who was going to drive her hasn't called. So I said, when Megan goes home, I'll take her to Bingo the next Monday. Meanwhile, she started getting a ride every Tuesday and Andy came to visit this weekend and took her to Bingo on Friday and to the movies. So to cap off a whirlwind weekend for Gloria, I showed up to take her to Bingo on Monday. She's always happy to go, but she did gently suggest that maybe I shouldn't buy three packets this time. Don't worry, I told her--I learned my lesson. I only bought in on the machine and brought my needlework. It was very pleasant and I was able to get a lot done on the needlework during the games since they only involved plugging in a number every couple of minutes. I didn't have to check cards, or make sure that I only dabbed the relevant squares or even pay attention at all. The machine started dancing during the Indian Star Bingo game and sure enough started singing to tell me that I had a bingo. Unfortunately I shared with someone, but $125 was still a pretty nice prize. Then a few games later, Gloria won all by herself on a $150 game. We are just so lucky.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Something Interesting

I still have sun product ad's, so I have to make this about something we want to see ads about. I heard an ad for a new Epson Printer which allows you to correct faded pictures and print restored ones. It also has a new kind of ink cartridge that uses less ink per picture to save on the cost. Of course, I'm betting that the new kind of ink costs more.....

The ABWA picnic was lots of fun--I was the life of the party with all the games. I had everyone playing Name Bingo which is a great get-to-know you game. There were about 50 people there so we weren't scrounging for names. (Once I played that game with only 15 people and I let everyone pick an alter ego and sign twice using two different names.) We also played the Price is Right using business products (including a battery opperated pencil sharpener which cost $2.99 at Rite Aid, Mom) and Who Wants to Be A Millionaire--but only for bragging rights. I had prizes for Bingo and Price is Right, but I had only brought one little kid prize and there were two little kids. One was the granddaughter of the hostess, so I reasoned that I should give her the toy. Then I found out that it was the other's birthday, so I should give her the toy. I mentioned to both grandmothers that I only had one toy and they both asked for the little crowns that I was using as the gag prize for Price is Right. Problem solved, I can always keep the toy for the next event. Then birthday girl won Price is Right (Grandma Donna graciously used the kids name for game.) So I gave the toy to birthday girl as the prize, we sang Happy Birthday and then I gave both girls crowns. Everyone had a great time. (One of the raffle prizes was a basket that I was ashamed to have included even thought the raffle tickets only cost a buck, but the gal who won it was sitting at the table with the birthday girl and she gave it to her to hold the little stuffed animal toy prize she won and that was the happiest little birthday girl on the planet.)

My friend Clara told us that she has sold her condo (for almost $200,000 more than she paid for it just 10 years ago) and she's moving to North Carolina. She jokingly asked if I wanted her cat and I said no quickly, but then I asked her why and she said she's afraid the cat is too old to make the trip. I wavered, but then she said that she really couldn't bear to part with her. Disaster averted. In a related incident that makes me feel like the center of the universe, on the way home I heard a news report on the best ways to travel with your pets--great tips that I will share with Clara.

Friday, August 13, 2004


Eight sites and only one update today--true it was three pictures of Jackson that are too precious for words. I have come to rely on the blogs as my sole source of entertainment in the doldrums of summer. Megan's gone home, so no more excuses for not cleaning up the 10 boxes of junk spread out all over my sitting room. I have the semblance of a plan for the old files in my office, so no more procrastinating getting rid of them. I have only clandestine solitare on the computer and blogs, and my moniter won't turn far enough to hid solitare from everyone walking by my office, so it's hard to play. (The cords are too short--I could spend a little time and solve that dilemma, but I have all those boxes of files that should be dealt with.) Hi ho.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

New Day

The way the clouds are arranged out my window, it looks like a sunrise and reminds me of Hawaii for some reason. I think the suntan lotion spilled in the trunk and I have that smell on my brain.
Adam is at Magic Mountain today. I was hoping he'd get a chance to go this summer, because he really likes it. Adrienne is going to Michigan for Thanksgiving, but Melody says that she cooked Thanksgiving dinner last year, so she's an old pro. Whew. I was really worried that I was going to go to Hometown again this year. Of course it wasn't that I didn't like Hometown--I did. What I didn't like was the lack of leftovers. I really missed picking at turkey for a week after Thanksgiving. I should probably face my fear of cooking a Turkey, but no. Unfortunately my only attempt is still fresh in my mind over 20 some odd years later.
Ben Franklin is getting really interesting. He had a lot of scandels in his closet and plenty of political enemies to parade them around. I have to remember that this book is written by the former CEO for CNN who seems to be trying to make the case that mudslinging press is nothing new and if old Ben could survive it, today's politicians should suck it up and stop complaining. Yeah, tell it to Princess Di.
Hi ho, you know the rest.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

A lot of nothing to do

Today is going to be a bear. I have nothing very important to do, but I have ten million things that must get done. With no real time limit on the ten million things, procrastination reins. I could shrug it all off and go meet the young democrats, but I already told them that I probably couldn't make it today (and I really haven't contributed anything--it's like going to the zoo.) I have Kiwanis and I have to write the bulletin again, so I have to keep a humorous tone to the day for success. I have the games for the picnic on Sunday to plan which should be enjoyable, but I have a lot of little work things that should come first. Or I could write on this blog.

Where are you Stephi Lu? The silly toy for Jackson is still in a bag at home patiently waiting to be brought to work so that I can mail it. So was that Josh fellow voted off or out or whatever they do on that show? Reader's Digest is all jokes this month. I finished it in one night. I had heard many of the jokes before, but a few made me laugh out loud. What time do the Olympics start on Friday? Is everyone going to the opening of Princess Diaries II today? Since I have nothing important to do, I also thought I'd add update my rolodex to my list of ten million--someone with an updated list could save me a lot of time and e-mail me a list. I have all my christmas cards, so I might as well get started on that too. First Hallmark had them on sale 1/2 price (still pretty pricey) and then yesterday it was $1 per box--that's my price.

Oh well, back to work, hi ho.

Monday, August 09, 2004

As Megan's trip draws to a close

It sure has been fun spoiling Megan these past few weeks. I only bought her two hats, a pair of socks and a girl scout uniform, so she doesn't have much to show for it from me, but I think Adrienne got her shoes and some tops. She has a very deep sun burn on the backs of her legs even though she assured me that she put on the sun tan lotion that I insisted she put on. [I got a burn on the inside of my arms which showed how I was holding my book. I lathered up with suntan lotion twice in four hours, but it didn't take.] On the long car rides out to visit Dad or Mary, I have tutored Megan about the Beatles and nature. We had a blue moon July 31st and the drive to Dad's and Mary's is in the direction of the setting sun, so we had lots of topics to cover. At one point she was mad that the sun was in her eyes and she said she wished there was no sun. I, of course, spent the next hour describing how important the sun was to everything and that she should be careful what she wished for, blah, blah, blah. She finally said "Does everything have to revolve around the sun??" exasperated. Well, actually... I still haven't stop laughing. Yes, she's almost a teenager and we'll have to wait a long time for Jackson to get interesting, but it's been fun for a little while.

There are too many shoes in the world

We had a great time on Friday night and Saturday day in San Diego and were too tired to have any fun Saturday night or Sunday morning, but by Sunday afternoon, Shamu made us happy again. Driving to San Diego three miles per hour over the hills gives you a startling perception of how many people there are in the world. Literally tons and tons of people. There were red and white lights from just a teeny tiny fraction of those people as far as the eye could see on the freeway. The Padres had about 40,000 people at the game and their annual attendance was in the millions, but Adrienne said, that's patetic--Dodgers have a much higher attendance. After driving around for a long time and getting lost twice, we followed very small, dirty and vandalized signs to the beach in San Diego. It was so crowded--litterally teaming with people. How did they find it. Then there were the shoes. We each had two pairs of shoes on this trip. That seems pretty reasonable--sandles for the beach and tennis shoes for walking around at Sea World. There was a little girl waiting at the restraunt (for over an hour we waited to eat after spending the entire day at the beach in the sun and ocean). She had the prettiest little shoes--really high quality workmanship. Her parents seemed pretty affluent--they invited all the kids in their party (which was about fifteen people including grandparents and cousins) to go in their car to watch bambi on DVD. And I thought--those shoes are going to fit her for ten minutes. Her parents are going to give them to good will when they are done with them and at least one other little kid will wear them. Heck, lets give those really pretty little shoes a break and assume ten more kids will wear them in Mexico and South America after the kids in the US are finished with them. How many pairs of shoes do people have in their life time--how many clothes do they each have over a lifetime. There are so many people--I just can't comprehend it all. But I try, because the alternative is to think about Hawaii. How come I'm going to San Diego when I want to be in Hawaii. I got a postcard inviting me to Hawaii to listen to a 90 minute talk on a time share there. I don't have any vacation time and I'd be way too tempted to sign up for something I can't afford, but I'm not throwing that post card away.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

The Loop

Well Erika seems to be going backwards to fill us in on the precious details of firsts for Jackson and Gretchen has disappeared. Marisa seems to be trying and Melody was great and then slacked off. Adrienne's had lots to share and Mom is pretty good. So how are we doing so far.

My extracurricular activities are going into full blast. Last Saturday was the Los Angeles Area Council's Candidate's forum where we have candidates for National office come for a meet and greet. We have four district six candidates, so that is pretty cool. At the event they name a Council Woman of the Year--someone who has shown outstanding leadership and devotion to the council for the previous year. Well last year we had two contested elections at council and loads of infighting. Last year, some members inappropriately called judges for Council Woman of the Year to bad mouth one of the gals. The two gals most likely to be Council Woman of the Year last year absolute hate each other and I was often in the middle trying to get them to shut up. Me, I only go to Council meetings when I have to and the only office that I've had was programs one year and treasurer by default last year--the other one quit and the president did all the work, since I was only at two meetings for the year. (I'm treasurer again this year, because I was in Florida and they claim that they couldn't reach me for me to decline.) Last year the Council struggled with infighting over a proposal to disband and combine with another council in Orange County. So when they called for nominations, I was against it. But the President of my chapter is a gung ho type who feels that every "t" must be crossed and since I was the only one willing to go to the council meetings, I was the logical choice for a candidate from our chapter. (Councils are collections of chapters). When she made the announcement that I was named Council Woman of the Year, the chair pointed out that there were only two candidates for the honor and she even named the other person. I know her, but my resume was going to blow her out of the water. So this means that I either have to get a lot more involved with the Council (ugh), or it probably dies a slow death as fewer and fewer want to be involved in the ridiculous high drama. Now wasn't it nicer to be outside of the loop.

Then there is PTA. My good friend Julieann is the president for the second year in a row and I offered to take any job she wanted to give me, but I couldn't go to the meetings (since I already have two other meetings that same day for ABWA and Girls Scouts). She asked me to help, heeelllppp, with the distribution of the newsletter. It goes out six time for the year, really how hard can it be. So I go to the newsletter meeting (and I bring Megan, because of course this will be a short meeting). It's a freakin mountain of work six times during the year. How they've retained volunteers to do all this work is beyond me, but I've already said yes and I can't imagine that anyone else will ever say yes again. I have a very bad feeling this is going to be my job for four years.

And Girl Scouts. I'm no longer a leader or the service unit manager, but I got nostaigic and offered to train leaders to go camping. I so hope this doesn't ever get me obligated to go camping again.

And of course there's ABWA. In addition to the council, I'm the Co-Chair of the Sponsorship Committee for the 2006 National Convention which means a lot of fundraising this year so that we can all go to Grapevine Texas next fall to invite everyone to Anaheim in the fall of 2006. We're wearing purple suits--I've never had a purple suit. To be continued. We don't have anyone in our chapter who volunteered to be the chair of Ways and Means this year and since I'm the treasurer, I'm probably going to be Ways and Means Chair also. Then we have the picnic a week from Sunday that I'm pretty much chairing and I've agreed to be the co-chair for the fashion show and I got roped into sponsoring a fundraiser for Southern Living (if you guys like anything from that catalog, let me know, the chapter gets 15%) and no doubt we'll do Sees candy again. I have the big raffle for 2006 and we'll probably have another bowling night. Not to mention that I'm going to be giving a program on Estate Planning in a few months to the Santa Clarita chapter and I really have to go to more of their meetings since I'm a duel member.

And now I have these blogging duties as well. Nothing like a really long boring blog to cull out the lightweights.
P.S. I've really outdone myself on the bulletin for Kiwanis again this week. I think writing is becoming adictive. I'm in the middle of reading three really good books and four more just ok books, but I don't have time to get back to them.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Democrat and Chauffeur Extraordinaire

I don't think I made that word up, but it's not in my little dictionary. If it is used enough it will make the new dictionary--that's how they decide if a word is a word--usage. We could make up words and try to see how many people we influence by trying to proliferate it. (That one's already in the dictionary as a verb and everything.)

So today was my meeting with the young democrats planning the Women in Business luncheon. This week Lynn (our ABWA president, who is retired from business) joined us and she was the great older voice of wisdom that the kids all drooled over. It was cute. Made me feel young. Last night I got a card from my chapter (actually from Marje, one of my good buddies) congratulating me on winning Council Woman of the Year (an award I picked up last Saturday for those not in the loop) and she wrote what I thought said "It's great to have such an aging young women in our group." Well I was highly offended and couldn't believe that my buddy--who's a lot older than me would call me an aging woman. I looked at it closer and closer and finally made out that she wrote "It's great to have such amazing young women in our group." The z in cursive looked like a g, the m looked like an n and there was a break between the m and the a. Much better. Amazing and young is much more like it.

At Kiwanis today we had Adam Schiff, our congressman speak to the group and that was pretty cool. He was just partisan enough to satisfy the died in the wool democrats and just non-partisan enough not to piss off all the majority of republicans there.

In between I drove Marisa to her new job at Hows Market. She has training in Pasadena today. I had her drive home from the restaurant last night in Burbank and park in the garage, but she just didn't want to drive on the freeway yet. She was kind enough to point out that next year Adam will be old enough to drive. So much for being young.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Buried Treasure

The girls cleaned and moved around furniture in their room this weekend because they needed more room. I had about three boxes in the top cupboard of their closet, so I offered to find a different place for them. Ris has mentioned needing the space for a few years, so this was a great opportunity. Now she says, no we have plenty of room, you can leave the boxes there. No, I say, give me the boxes. There's room she says. No I say, give me the boxes. OK. There were about 10 boxes. 10 boxes that I haven't opened since we lived in the apartment. I think there are a few boxes that I haven't opened since I lived in West LA. I found a box of negatives and I apoligize mightily to anyone whom I disparaged for delibrately throwing away my negatives. I found a big box of pictures that I can't wait to explore. I found all my old grades from high school (I got a D in a class my senior year). I found my high school yearbook, but Gretchen and Karl are not in it--very strange. I found old record albums that I saved from the Adrienne scourge and had dispaired lost. I started to make a pile for trash as I culled through the boxes and Adrienne offered very nicely to take out the trash, but I'm not ready yet.