Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, year end edition

Here's hoping your New Year's celebrations are the chillest ever. And that 2016 brings you all that's good. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

Monday Meh, Winter? Edition

It's the last Monday Meh for 2015, and I'm still wondering where winter is. Artist Giuseppe Arcimboldo personified winter in this 16th century painting -- which could benefit from a dusting of snow, methinks. 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, Season's Greetings Edition

For your holiday viewing pleasure, here are three dachshund pups about to get into some merry mischief. This card, dating from 1908, with its generic "Season's Greetings!" shows that the War Against Christmas is nothing new. 

Which reminds me. To try and make my office space more festive, I brought in a miniature Christmas tree, decorated with lights and little animal figurines and toys. One day my boss came in, looked at the tree, and told me I wasn't a very good Athiest, having a Christmas tree on display. My reply? "You're not a very good Christian if you think a tree has anything to do with Christmas.'

As far as I know, I will still have a job to return to after the New Year. Darn.

Find some joy in this season, however you celebrate it. Scooter Pie says so.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Monday Meh, Childhood Mehmory Edition

I had this very edition of the Hans Christian Anderson tale, "The Little Match Girl," when I was young. The illustrations captivated me, while leaving me fairly ignorant of the horribleness of the story. Basically, a street "urchin" goes out on a cold winter day to sell matches to help support her family. Poorly dressed -- her slippers were too big and fell off, and her hand-me-down rags were no match for the biting cold and snow -- the LMG lights one of the precious matches for warmth. Her hypothermic hallucinations lead her to a wonderous holiday feast, and the LMG freezes to death under the illusion that her dear grandmother has come to take her somewhere where she'll be warm and well-fed. 

What the hell kind of Christmas story is that? 

Never mind -- there are plenty of political and religious entities today that want us to believe that sacrifice and suffering is the way to a glorious future. And the holiday season is an amalgam of Scroogery and commercial excess that leaves me feeling cold in spite of the unseasonably warm temperatures in my neck of the woods. But I have just 3 days to manufacture some Christmas spirit, so I'll be in the kitchen baking cookies and hoping that Santa gives all the naughty, naughty capitalists  exactlly what they deserve this year. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, steampunk edition

Just like its warm-blooded counterparts, the mechanical version of the dachshund is driven by the belly-motor. 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Monday Meh

Gray Tree, Piet Mondrian (1911)
This painting reminded me of the view out my window yesterday, the morning fog rendering everything monochromatic. I'm a fan of black and white photography, but you hardly ever see black and white paintings. Especially from an artist like Mondrian whose more familiar works pop with primary colors interspersed among the black and white outlines. 

In spite of my having the advantage of a college art history course on my transcript, and being privileged to have grown up around artists and art and museums, I would not have guessed that "Gray Tree" was a Mondrian. Sometimes I like having my pre-conceptions shaken up. It's a shame that too many fellow citizens are just fine with their dearly held ideas about too many things and people. 

More art, less hate.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, Dogma Edition

Hey, Jerry Falwell, Jr. -- don't you know you should leave dogma to the dogs? 

Monday, December 7, 2015

Monday Meh, ennui edition

Sadness, Erté

Feeling so, so weary of all the idiocy and knee-jerking and fear-mongering that assaults our senses from the media and anybody else who feels the need to spew their hateful, ignorant rantings about how to "fix" the problem of innocents being killed by gunfire by giving more people more guns and assuming that everyone is the enemy. 

I wish I had a sense for how and if and when it will all change . . . . for the better.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, carnivore edition

Everyone knows I love Scooter Pie, our darling doxie. I have even, on occasion, cooked special food for her when her pancreatitis was flaring up. However, I didn't let her know that in Portland there was a special store selling  "Meat for Cats and Dogs" -- a shop I happened to spot while out for lunch one day during my recent stay in the Rose City for a conference. I can appreciate wanting the best for our four-footed family members, but am not quite sure why they need their own grocery stores . . . . 

Then again, isn't PetSmart their version of WalMart?

Monday, November 30, 2015

Monday meh

From the looks of things, I'm not the only blogger who's been distracted or otherwise engaged these past few months. It doesn't make me feel any less guilty(ish) for abandoning this project, though. Sure, I journal regularly in my private space, but those passages are mostly the rantings of a discontent, middle-aged woman who sees her life being molded into some unrecognizable form by forces mostly beyond her control. That's not intelliwench!

I can do better. Meanwhile, it's a(nother) rainy Monday. Meh.

(Photo by me on a recent rainy Sunday as I departed a conference in Portland, OR)

Monday, September 14, 2015

Monday Meh. Again.

This is a pretty accurate representation of my career path. At least all that climbing is good for the glutes, right?

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

And then this happened

Just when I needed it most, great-niece Maddy had her 4th birthday bash. There is nothing like a bunch of 4- and 5-year old girls hyped up on sugar and My Little Pony to bring one out of an existential funk. These small people took the work of having fun so very seriously, too. There is a lesson there, and a reminder that we old fogies need to do all we can to make the world a better place for the generations that follow. 

And enough with the goddamn standardized testing already. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Monday Meh - You didn't think I forgot, did you?

Woman with Umbrella, Robert Delaunay
Ok, I know it's Tuesday. It might still be Monday in Hawaii, I guess. At any rate, I am both pleased and alarmed to share the news that the summer institute I have managed for the past 8 years was cancelled this summer due to lack of interest. Yay!!! Yikes!!!  This turn of events somehow hasn't resulted in there being much less work for me to do -- just work of a different nature, work that the new colleague in the office is supposed to be doing but cannot be relied upon to do,  and other work that another colleague is too busy atteending to personal shit to do  . . .  So at least the void left in my hours, if not in my budget, is being filled. 

Other demands on my time and energy are occuring on the home front, too. For a while now my mother has been dealing with chronic nerve pain, and one by one we've been exhausting all options but surgery. We're still looking for that "magic pill" that will deliver relief and a means to a better quality of life. When you live in the middle of freaking nowhere, though, the journey to health is a literal one, driving more than an hour to the town where the brain and spine and orthopedic specialists are. It's been another kind of adventure, too, realizing that my mother doesn't or doesn't want to hear what the doctors have to say -- "If I don't hear what is wrong with me, I don't have to admit I'm unwell," she has basically said.  This caregiving has become an intricate dance that I am trying to learn. It is inevitable that I will step on some toes, miss some beats, never seem to perfect. I never was a good dancer, though . . . 

A while back I made the observation that there are 2 funeral homes within walking distance of my house, but I have to drive 25 miles to buy a bottle of wine -- or clothes, for that matter. So while Bubbaville may be a good place to die, it's a shitty place to live, even under the best of circumstances.  My plan to move away, though, is on hold until the thing that I can't articulate -- you know, THAT thing -- comes to pass. 

I'd better stock up on wine.  

Saturday, June 27, 2015


Bravo to the US Supreme Court for yesterday's decision making marriage equality the law of the land. I won't even let the fact that it was a narrow victory temper my happiness. For those gnashers and wailers who believe that the end times are upon us, I would say, I hope so. I hope the end of hate and bigotry and injustice is near. 

Now, on to the next battle. Battles. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Monday Meh

*sigh* ... I never thought I'd be faced with a dilemma like this. I need to find a babysitter for my octogenarian parent and geriatric canine so that I can go to a punk rock show in Raleigh next month. 

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Sometimes you just can't tell . . .

Sometimes you just can't tell if the storm clouds are heading your way, or if they've already moved past. Your perspective is limited, so that even if you can see which way the winds are blowing, your view of the larger landscape is blocked -- by something -- and there's no way of telling if the clear space is just a break in the clouds, or how long it's going to last. 

But  go ahead and enjoy the sun anyway, because it's here now, and that's the only guarantee there is. 

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, Blue Dog Edition

I forgot where I found this little pup - sorry!

I'm no Blue Dog, that's for sure, but I can't resist posting pictures of doxies no matter what their hue.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday Meh

 Directed to a certain coworker.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Wienerdog Wednesday, Licker License edition

Some Wienerdog Wednesday silliness as I captured Scooter Pie exercising her right to lick everything in sight. Uninformed visitors might mistakenly believe that our floors, furniture, and appendages are covered in some sort of savory canine treat, judging from the way Scooter Pie goes around with her nose to the ground and her tongue rendering every available surface soggy with doggy drool. It's probably intellikid's fault, since she complained that our previous dog didn't give "kisses." Be careful what you wish for . . . .

Thursday, January 8, 2015

You Can't Always Get What You Want

Artist: Kazuyuki Ohtsu
We finally got some snow this week, but it was not the gentle, picturesque snow I wanted. Our snow was driven by bone-chilling winds (the highest mountaintops reported wind chills of -40F!), and there was hardly enough of it to build a snowball, let alone a snowperson.

But you can't always get what you want and, if I may paraphrase the lyric, sometimes you shouldn't even try to get what you think you need. Misplaced idealism that seeks to silence opposing voices at gunpoint is not something anybody needs.