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Showing posts from April, 2020

Breaking in new boots when slippers are the work-at-home fashion choice of the pandemic

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Earlier this week, a friend of mine tweeted about his shoes - saying "they must be wondering WTF happened to me." I got it. And tweeted back at him about the pair of boots that I bought just before the world turned upside down and slippers became normal home office footwear. Those boots have yet to be completely broken in. I'm not the sort who is obsessed by shoes. The basics are generally all I need or want. I have a brown pair of dress shoes, a black pair, sneakers for walking the Ornery Dog and a pair of Crocs I wear when I feel like scandalizing my wife. Oh, and I also have a pair of sturdy work boots that I wear mostly for show. It's not like I dig ditches for a living.  But I admit it. I love the boots I bought just before things went haywire. Good thing since I paid money enough for them. I bought them at an actual shoe store where I actually put my foot in one those actual contraptions that are supposed to accurately measure your feet. That shoe-bu

Groundhog Day In The Neighborhood

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Have you ever heard the sound a groundhog makes when it's cornered and pissed off? I did over the weekend. They loudly gnash their teeth and it was the most exciting thing to happen in my neighborhood since the days started running together like they do in well ... the beloved Bill Murray flick "Groundhog Day." Is it 6am already campers? Where's Ned Ryerson when you need to punch someone? I'm not sure I have it in me to give anyone a fat lip. Not yet, anyway. I did, however, get a little snippy Monday when I couldn't find a decent pair of clean socks. Doing laundry in the age of coronavirus is optional at my house right now. Anyway, if I were going to bop anyone in the mouth, it might as well be Ornery Dog Jasper. He's a puppy. And when he's not scratching a hole in the drywall, tearing up our meager supply of toilet paper, or swiping food off the kitchen counter, he's annoying our veteran, Big Dog Rodney. Rodney's hips aren't

Fine, it's my birthday so have at it.

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I'm not a terribly religious man, so I hesitate to comment for fear of revealing just how much I don't know. Or worse, a heathen. But even I recognize the solemn nature of today, Good Friday, the day Christians observe the crucifixion of Jesus during this Easter Season. And that's why I always feel a little odd when my birthday coincides with it. I'm 56 today. There was a time not that long ago when I'd share a few celebratory beers with friends or go out to a restaurant for dinner and a few more beers (or even something a little stronger). Not now. We're observing the mantra of our times and plan to "stay at home." And besides, celebrating a birthday seems out of sync with Good Friday. We will, however, likely be ordering takeout tonight. No better time than now to support local eateries. Sticking with a low-key birthday is fine by me. It's the right thing to do to help flatten the curve. And besides, I don't like a fuss anyway.

The View From The Stoop Thursday Morning Was More Interesting Than Usual

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Nothing like waking up to the sound of chainsaws in the morning. Those guys, the ones who trim trees for a living, really ought to sell tickets. Who doesn't like to watch a brave fellow with a chainsaw dangling from his hip dance around the uppermost branches of a tall tree that scrapes the sky? It's like watching one of the Flying Wallendas walk a tightrope without a net. At once exhilarating, tense and hold-your-breath dangerous. Those guys are daredevils. And it seems to me they're leaving money on the table - especially now when entertainment options are limited by the coronavirus pandemic. Movies theaters are shutdown. You can forget about baseball for now. Restaurants are closed except for takeout. I never thought I'd say it, but even I'm getting a little tired of "Star Trek" reruns. Don't tell my wife I said that.  Anyway, the tree trimmers, with their ropes, chainsaws and big trucks, turned up across the street from my house Thurs

Things Are Getting Shaggy Around Here

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Photo credit Jason Romage, Uncle Joe's Barbershop Although I've lately taken to cringing when cashiers at the grocery store touch my stuff and think twice before punching in my bank card's PIN to pay for said stuff, I'm generally not the obsessive sort. Really, I'm not. If you don't believe me, take the word of an old friend. Years ago, she diagnosed me with "laid back" disorder. I'm pretty sure that's not a real thing, but she was a pysch major at the time so who am I to argue. And in any case, being excessively mellow is better than being a narcissist. The gaslighting alone would exhaust me. While I may have a reputation for not getting too worked up about much, my hair is a different matter. It's on a schedule, dammit. And the coronavirus pandemic has thrown off my longstanding routine. I prefer to keep my hair extremely short. That way I don't have to bother with it. When I get up in the morning, it is what it is and t

Boredom Baking - Also Jasper!

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I'd like to blame our daughter for the mess I woke up to on Wednesday. After all, she is home early from college. The coronavirus pandemic saw to that. Like most others, her campus is shut down. If our world had remained what it was just a few short weeks ago, she would be leaving the cooking to cafeteria workers in her dorm right now. But instead of filling her stomach with the fruits of someone else's labor, she's filling it (and mine) with the fruits of her own. And in the process, leaving our kitchen looking like a freight train crashed into it. My wife and I are used to running the dishwasher MAYBE once a day. Now, it might as well be a perpetual motion machine. We get up in the morning and start a wash. We run it in the afternoon and a couple times in the evening. Anything we missed gets thrown into a wash we start just before retiring for the night. Pretty soon, I'm not going to be able sleep without the sound of water being sloshed around. The dishwasher