Thursday, 30 April 2015

Pointless photo of the day:

Yeah, I need to take some more photos.

That's got to be it for today. Kinda busy.

Monday, 27 April 2015

Pointless photo of the day:

This is a bit old, but I don't think I've used it yet. The shelves at the basement windows were originally for overwintering plants, but even with our old cats they became observation decks pretty quickly.

Incidentally, my dad heard from the owner of the mother of our current cats that she's just had another litter. Dad's cats aren't even a year old, remember.

I'm more than a little annoyed by the news, to be honest. Wandering cats are huge killers of songbirds, for one thing, and even if they're not hunting there's a big chance that they'll have shorter lives through injury or illness. It's a bit of a thing where I work, the whole keep your cat inside idea.

If they can't be bothered to do that, they should at least have her spayed. Hey, Tom and Bob are great, but how many times do you want to find homes for more Toms and Bobs?

Just saying. And now saying (repeat after me -- you've heard it enough by now) back to work for me.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

The flowers that bloom in the spring...

Tra la!

Oh wait. Some of you don't have the same music in your brain as I do. Gimme a sec...

Here you go -- from Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado. I chose a clip with the dialogue that comes before the song so that maybe it's a bit more understandable to those of you who don't know the operetta.

The youth choir that I was in as a youth (um, duh) put on abridged versions of G&S. In the Mikado I was, of course... Koko, the (idiot. Well, that's oversimplifying, but you get the direction) Lord High Executioner. The one who gets to marry the ugly old lady that they talk about in this song. Yay? Oh, it was good fun, actually, but the fact that I never once got to play a female character in all of the productions that we did was a bit hard on an insecure teenage girl. It was only due to a shortage of boys, but still. The one time that I was supposed to be female (Ruth, in Pirates of Penzance) our director became ill and it never happened. Figures.

Aaanyway. That was an awfully long aside when I only wanted to explain the post title. These particular flowers are in bloom right now, and that makes me happy because they're the first wildflowers around here that are. Early Blue Violet (Viola adunca). Even though these are in the yard and surrounded by plant litter (and blown-in garbage, of course), they're still wild. They showed up probably before I was born, they faithfully come up every year, and we're happy to let them.

Tra la.


Sorry I missed the Saturday post that I generally make when I'm in at Dad's, but I came in later than usual and then we ended up taking a trip to the local trade fair in the afternoon.

Small town trade fairs can be fun, even if in this particular rural centre they come with a lot of farm-related things that this townie has no interest in. As a kid I always loved trade fairs because of the stuff. You know, the giveaways. The pens, the key chains, the stickers, the balloons; basically anything that any company was giving away I'd collect because I could. Occasionally some of the stuff was useful, but most of it -- except the pens -- hit the garbage can within days of being brought home. But still. Free stuff, right? Who can argue with free stuff?

I still generally try to grab at least a pen when I go to a trade fair because you can always use a pen, but I have managed to restrain my stuff-collecting impulses over the years.

This year's show was a bit politics-heavy because we're having a provincial election and of course all of the candidates needed to be there (and incidentally? Way to have no class, Wild Rose. Bringing those inflatable stadium thingies that you bash together to make noise -- thundersticks, apparently --because you know that the kids will all want them? There's more than one reason that I wish you would just vanish. Even though Danielle Smith managed to get rid of herself), but there were still some interesting things to look at. I bought a grand total of nothing even though I'm sort of in the market for a purse and Phil's Fudge Factory makes reeeally good maple bacon fudge (seriously), but I did, naturally, pick up one or two things. You have to, or you just don't feel like you've been there. This time around, a key chain from the Town that has a tape measure on it, a key chain from Corrections Canada (not entirely sure why they were there. Recruiting, maybe. Employees, I mean, not more criminals) that has an emergency whistle on it because the one I got from a pile driving company a while ago is showing some wear, a couple of cards from businesses that might be useful work contacts, and a whack of catalogues from companies who would love for me to either host parties for them or become an associate to find people to host parties for them.

To be honest, I don't understand how party-style selling is still such a big thing, especially in the online store age. Not my lifestyle, I suppose. I also don't understand how Tupperware gets away with being so expensive, but obviously they do so what do I know?

The one thing I didn't get? A pen. I forgot. Dad got one and he offered it to me, but I have other pens. Still, though. I forgot a pen? I must be slipping.


There's enough words to last a while, but one last thing before I probably avoid drawing today. I was surprisingly gutted to hear of Jonathan Crombie's death. Not because I was one of the apparently thousands of girls who has a crush on him as Gilbert Blythe (although he was a near-perfect Gilbert Blythe, speaking as someone who grew up on the Anne books), but because he was so young, so talented, and had so much potential. Reading about him yesterday made him seem like a really neat person, too. Just goes to show that you can never tell what's going to happen in life, I guess.

Enjoy it while you've got it. He seemed to.

Friday, 17 April 2015

Hopefully quick post of the day:

I'm watching you.

Erm, yes, upside down because that's how I was holding the camera.

And without make-up and windblown because it was the weekend when I took this and I'd been outside for a bit.

I'm so not into this selfie stuff...


Ever fall in love with an album that's famous more or less for just one song? Falco 3 was like that for me. I mean, the radio was all over Rock Me Amadeus, but there was a time when I had the whole damned record memorised. I don't anymore, but it wouldn't take long to get it back if I tried.

I mention this because my latest earworms have been from from an album by an 80s band from Quebec that had one English hit. I loved the whole album, though, and it's driving me freaking nuts that I can't remember enough about either the band or the record to be able to search for it.

Of course, driving me nuts is, as a friend used to like to say, more like a short putt than a drive.

Ah well. Something tells me that I'll be diving into my old store of cassettes (yes, cassettes) just to satisfy my olf tendencies. Until then, go back and listen to Falco. Hey, it's cheesy but it's still a fun song.

Back to work now.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Tea... and other stuff if I happen to still have time.

Some days I have more fun editing the photos that turned out crap than I did taking the photos in the first place...


Ok, to catch you up on the current tea-drinking. Remember I said that if a person added milk to Cocoa Canela it would basically be hot chocolate with extra caffeine? I tried it the other day. It was. And it was very good.

Yesterday was the first go for Organic Pure Chai. Very tasty, but with only cinnamon and cloves for spices I think that it lacks the complexity of what I personally think of as chai. Maybe it's my definition of chai that's sketchy, I dunno. That's more than possible. It's still a good, drinkable tea, whatever the case may be.

Today I had Assam Banaspaty, and it strikes me as odd that with all the tea I've had over the years I'd never actually tried an assam before. I liked it a lot. It's definitely a candidate for reordering.

Aaand I'm officially out of lunch break. So much for the other stuff part, but it gives me something for next time if I manage to remember it. Catch you later.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Quick pointless photo and tartan update

This is a bit of a mystery. What you're seeing are grouse feathers and body parts by my father's hedge. Ruffed Grouse, if anyone wants to google it. I thought I had a couple of shots Dad took a few years ago of a grouse hanging around his place (probably not the same grouse), but they must be on another flash drive.

Anyway, the mystery is what ate the grouse. They're not hugely common, in yards at least, and they're fairly big. It's possible that a very talented wandering house cat got it cornered in front of the hedge, of course, or that a neighbour's dog got lucky, but I wonder if maybe we don't have foxes hanging around. It's happened in the past, and the fact that I haven't noticed tracks doesn't mean much. These feathers were probably under the snow for a while.

Ah well. Food chains in action.


I need to get back to work, bit I thought that one or two of you might be interested to know that Dad's Maple Leaf Tartan jacket will not, after all, be taken to pieces. I showed Wheat the photo yesterday and he was interested enough that I brought the jacket in with me today. Now I've been forbidden to destroy it because he wants it. To wear. For real.

Actually, if you saw it in person you'd know why. It's a nice, well-constructed jacket, and in the realm of tartans it's not at all gaudy. I have to admit that I wasn't all that keen to piece it out, so I've given it to him on the condition that he find me something tartan to wear by next Tartan Day.

This ought to be fun. In a good way.

In the meantime, today is Draw A Bird Day. Yes, really. We've been contributing on our work twitter feed, and it's kind of a blast to get other people involved. So draw a bird, post it somewhere, and give someone else a smile today. The hashtag is #DrawABirdDay if you want to look it up. Hey, you may even find mine...

Monday, 6 April 2015

Tartan Day

Well, it's Tartan Day here in Canada and a lot of other places (although I see that Australia and New Zealand have theirs in July). Tartan Day, you ask? Yes, really. April 6th was chosen because it marks the anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath. I'll let you do your own reading on that. I'm not exactly up on my Scottish history.

Heck, I'm not even Scottish.

Oh, maybe if you go waaay back in my mother's ancestry you might find something, but I'm far more English than I'd ever be Scottish. I'm more Welsh than Scottish, and that's going back a ways right there. I'm even more Irish than I am Scottish, and that's going back even further. And as for Ukrainian? Well, my grandfather was Ukrainian (or Ukrainian-Canadian, that is), so when it comes down to ancestry I'm actually fairly Ukrainian even though I don't know a darned thing about it.

Um, anyway. The point is, I'm not Scottish.

For a number of years now my boss, who is of Scottish ancestry, has been giving us the gears for not celebrating Tartan Day. This is someone who has shown up to work in full kilt on April 6th, by the way. Many of us have tried to explain that if we own any tartan at all it's in pyjama bottoms, but he'll just say we should come to work in pyjama bottoms then.

Not me. Besides, I feel a bit weird about wearing tartan. Have I mentioned that I'm not Scottish?

Well, I hadn't remembered that Tartan Day was coming up, but the other day I was reading an article on the history of tartans (and, naturally, now I realise that the article wasn't posted at random) and that got me searching for itemss made with the Alberta Tartan. Oh, wait, Alberta Tartan. And, as an added bonus, the other provinces. You know, for those who are interested. I figured that I may not be Scottish -- did I mention? -- but I am an Albertan. And there are plenty of scarves and things out there that I could get for not much money, and then next Tartan Day I wouldn't have to put up with the annual where's your tartan-fest.

I mentioned all of this to Dad, and he sent me in a slightly different direction.

What you're seeing in the not-entirely-pointless photo above is an old jacket of his featuring the Maple Leaf Tartan, which is Canada's official tartan. I may not be Scottish -- have you heard? -- but I'm definitely Canadian. And since the jacket doesn't fit him anymore he's perfectly willing for me to take it to bits and make whatever tartanish things I'd like to have around for Tartan Day. And as an added bonus, the thing's virgin wool. That's quite the step up from the polyester-viscose stuff I was looking at. Tartan Day problem solved!

Except that TODAY is Tartan Day.

Kind of makes me laugh, really.

Ah well, Tartan Day problem for next year solved, and if I'm in the mood for a little sewing tonight (hand-sewing that is. I'm way too far away from junior high home ec to remember how to use a sewing machine) maybe I'll make myself a little hair bow or something just to give the day a day-late nod at work tomorrow.


On a completely different note, I hope that everyone's remembering that April is Daffodil Month for the Canadian Cancer Society. Wear a pin. Buy a bunch of flowers if you see a charity seller in a local store. They're not expensive, the money's for a good cause, and I'm pretty sure that someone you love will appreciate the fact that you took the time.

Enough words for today, folks. I'm off to... oh hell, probably do my taxes. It seems to happen every Easter weekend.

Happy holidays?

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Pointless photos

Otherwise known as I really haven't thought of a topic yet today. Maybe later. For now, though, shall we tour some pointless photography?


They don't seem to care. They're cats.
The first crocuses are up. Dad says that they were open most of the week, but of course not for me. They might be now that it's warmed up a bit. I'll check.
 We had a lovely little mini snowstorm yesterday, but much of it is melted. Snow = bad; melting snow = interesting patterns for Yours Nerdily.
 The skim of ice on the fish pond made some interesting shapes. To me, at least. To the rest of you this is probably a WTF shot.

I don't really mind, to be honest. I like WTF shots.

The last picture is just more melting snow (I appreciate more melting snow), but since the blog editor's being stubborn and won't let me move the cursor there (and I'm too lazy to move to the html editor today to fix that), I'll just leave it be and end with a quick tea review. Yesterday I made some Cocoa Canela to take along on the drive here to Dad's. This is... well, it's pretty much hot chocolate with cinnamon and plenty of caffeine. In fact, if I'd put some milk in it would have been hot chocolate with cinnamon and plenty of caffeine.

I can't say that I have a problem with that.

Here's your last pointless photo. Everyone knows that you can click on them to make them bigger, right?

Well, you do now.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Something about food, probably

And this, which is me playing pointless photoeditor game with a shot that wasn't all that great. It's more fun now -- kind of like a twining honeysuckle on a musical stave, maybe.

Well, I like it.


So, the potatoes are on and from the sound of things upstairs the turkey will soon be in the care of Mr Popeil (I mean the rotisserie, for those who don't follow the infomercial scene). And there'll be dressing and gravy and cranberry and of course pumpkin pie for dessert. You'd think it was a holiday or something.

Dad and I do holidays in a small way, which I think is appropriate. It would seem weird to go to a lot of fuss for just the two of us. I was mentioning to him, however, that it seems a little odd in a way to do turkey and pumpkin pie for Easter. Isn't that more autumn-like? I mean, not that I'm complaining. I like turkey dinner. Just, for whatever reason, Easter seems more ham than turkey to me.

Good thing we're not having ham, though, because I got ham in my head last weekend and bought a small one for myself this week.

Anyway, the whole thing got me to thinking about our arbitrary ideas of when food is appropriate. For example, I had a grilled cheese for breakfast this morning. Hey, I'd been up since four (as, sadly, usual) and by the time I got around to having breakfast it was practically lunch time, relatively-speaking. Nothing wrong with a grilled cheese for lunch. But for breakfast? Some of you are thinking that it's weird. But if I'd had a couple of pieces of toast instead with an egg and a piece of cheese, no one would have thought a thing. Put it into sandwich form and it's suddenly not breakfast.

Incidentally, I had a fried egg and toast for supper last night. It's what I was in the mood for.

As another example, back in university I had the habit of ordering two extra large pizzas on the weekend and living on that for as long as it would last me. Breakfast, supper... not usually lunch because I was on campus. If I did that now people would wonder about my health, if not my sanity. As a student? It didn't seem any worse than living on ramen or Kraft Dinner the way some people did.

Er... should I admit now that lunch more often than not was chocolate milk in those days? Gah. I can't justify that at all even now, except to say that often I didn't have much of a break between my morning lectures and my afternoon labs. At least the milk was a bit of energy.

Anyway (again), my eating habits are much better now for the most part, and thank goodness. Your body won't let you get away with the same garbage in your forties as you could in your twenties. And today, as I said, we'll be eating especially well. Happy Easter, Passover (seems weird to say happy Passover...), spring break, or whatever else you may be celebrating, everyone.
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