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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Burned the Brussels Sprouts

Sigh city. I really do like brussels sprouts. I didn't mean to burn them. I made a batch for dinner and then cooked a second batch to be eaten like popcorn or tossed into other dishes. Sadly, I left them cooking for five hours. That wasn't good for them. No one noticed the smell, I guess. Mom, for one, wouldn't have been able to figure out how to turn the toaster oven off. Then again, I am not really sure that is true. She does seem to be able to figure out how to turn things on and off. Though that is about the limit of her acknowledged cognizance of things technical.



Speaking of mom, I plan to take her to the race track again. I know that she has fun there. It is a pleasant way to spend a nice afternoon. Maybe sometime this month. Still haven't figured out what to do about Kristen's wedding. My guess is that we will just not go. Finding someone to watch mom for a few days is not an easy task. And I haven't gotten my ducks in a row regarding mom. Sigh. I really need to do that too.

Carrot or the stick? I tend to work better with the carrot - or even better with carrot cake. How about you? When you have things you would like to do, do you beat yourself up and take away things? Or do you promise yourself a treat when they are done?

A package I ordered finally arrived. Yay! Mom has been watching a lot of Doc Martin lately - I mean at least 10 times through the whole series. Not that she really remembers it, but I think it is beginning to sink in, that she has seen it before. Oh, that reminds me of a funny - well, not funny, but interesting perhaps - there is a DVD of Victor Borge that she loved to watch, until she found out that it was a recording of a show he had done. Some part of her brain thought that she was watching a live performance of his, right then, right there. Anyway, I bought her a set of DVDs of As Time Goes By - starring one of her favorite performers - Judi Densch. I hope this goes over better than the NCIS series I got for her.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Tic Tac Toe

Three days in a row. Are the "x" days or "o" days? Hmm.

So, I was thinking that I would see if the bike place downtown does layaway. If they do, I could start paying for a new bike now and have it in time for next Spring. I like the idea of layaway. Better than buying something on credit in my opinion. Teaches one the happiness and satisfaction inherent in delayed gratification. We shall see. Thursday I will inquire.

I found myself noticing bikes all over the place today. Silly of me, I know, hoping to see mine just sitting out somewhere. Still, it is a small town and anything is possible (though most things are unlikely). I also looked at The Smith to see if perhaps I had hallucinated and not ridden my bike home the other night and had just left it there. Another bike was there, not mine, unfortunately. Sigh.

The bright side - they didn't take my bike/car rack. Nor did I attach the rear-view mirror! Hurrah for small blessings.

Right now I am sitting at the Smith babysitting for a band that is rehearsing for an upcoming East Coast swing of a tour. It reminds me of the times I have hung out with bands in the past. Back in college I was sort of briefly the band manager for a group of guys I knew. Rockford, I think was the band's name. I recently reconnected with a few of them on Facebook! The other was when I was living in the Bay Area and was briefly the lighting guy (when they played gigs where there was a lighting rig set-up) and lugger for a band called Hobo. Not as glamorous as people think it is, the life of a musician. Or any artist for that matter. A lot of time is spent just sort of sitting around. It does have its cool bits. And this time I am getting some work accomplished - which is more than can be said for those days gone by.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Mean People Suck

This is just a quick post to say that mean people do indeed suck. I came back from a morning meeting to find that my bicycle - my new to me bicycle into which I had put a decent amount of time, money and energy, was stolen. Off of my enclosed front porch. Yes, the door was open. Yes, the bike was unlocked. But it was on my front porch. On. My. Front. Porch. What kind of crap is that?

Since Geneva is a small town, I do hope that I will see someone riding my bike one day and I will be able to ask for it back.

I don't think I will report it to the police. Why bother? Really, they are too busy giving people speeding or j-walking tickets. And what would they do in any case? Stop everyone riding a bike and ask if it is mine? They aren't about to do a house to house search. And I haven't put anything particularly identifying on it.

I think I will wait until next summer to get another bike. I can't face buying a new one at this point. And I will probably do things differently. Like put it in a vault whenever I am not using it. Sigh.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Has it really been weeks since my last post?

How the mighty have fallen?! It has been two weeks, at least, since my last confession. Mea Culpa. Mea maxima pulpa! (Not sure what pulpa is, but when has that stopped me?)

So, how are things with you? Let's see, since you asked, things with me, for the most part, are pretty great. I have a bunch of first world, middle (ish) class problems, but you know, in the grand sweep and scope of reality, things are dandy. Yay.

That being said, let's get our kvetch on. Starting with mom. I must admit to having been remiss in my duties on July 4th. The last two years I dragged mom out to fireworks. This time it just seemed too daunting. But I guess I need to give a bit of background.

A couple of weeks ago, mom took a tumble. This is nothing new. Lately at least. Since coming back from Maine mom has gracefully kerplunked at least four times. Well, three of them were graceful (ish). The one she remembers was the one where she took out a box of cassettes (what the heck are those things and why do they still linger in this house)(I really need help letting go of stuff)(seems like an oft repeated sentiment - heck, a refrain even - if we were singing). Just this morning she was complaining of owies received in her latest loss to gravity only to attribute them to her collapse atop the box of cassettes. I never did like that box anyway. But the one where the owies came from necessitated a trip to the doctor's for a look-see. She bumped her head and her chin - I think on a chair in her room. I can't be sure because I was downstairs actually doing something - making dinner or lunch or cleaning the kitchen. For once I wasn't playing on the xBox - when I heard mom's "I'm falling" sounds. I came upstairs and found her sitting on the floor at the bottom of her bed. Her head had a bruise - it is still visible - and it took me a minute to notice that her chin was bleeding. Of course this happened on a Friday - must have been around dinner time - because I recalled thinking that my only recourse was to go to the Emergency Room - except there was no emergency. She seemed ok, for the most part - a bit bumped and bruised but not in dire need of medical assistance.

Why do things like this seem to happen on the weekend. Why couldn't she take a fall on Monday at 11 in the morning? Whatever. Anyway, that flavored my entire weekend (and is still flavoring my mental space) - waiting for Monday to roll around so we could visit with a medical professional. Said MP didn't do much, really. Nice enough - and mom's GP popped in for a quick consultation. We also checked on another issue - mom's feet and lower legs were swelling up - the aide and I both noticed it. So, she is taking pills, supposed to drink a lot of fluids and go to the bathroom a lot to get rid of the swelling. It would be nice if she exercised. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. Ha. Haha.

I really need to get some ducks in a row. First, it would be good to know what ducks I need or what ducks I might already have. Sigh. I am thinking of aiming for a post a day at some point. Perhaps. Maybe. When my brain seems less cluttered. As if.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Some randomness is welcome, yes?

A few random thoughts for today - first, I had another epiphany about what to do with the ends of mom's bread. She doesn't like crusts, so she obviously wouldn't really enjoy the butts of the bread. So they have been accumulating. One use I have made of them is croutons - home made croutons - not that I did a great job making them, but they were ok. I also used them for making French Toast which worked out alright too. A third usage is where the epiphany came in. I like crusts. Well, like might be an overstatement. I don't mind them. So, when making a sandwich for myself one day - sometimes when I don't have loads of leftovers to eat, I make myself an Augustus Sandwich (salami, sharp cheddar cheese, mayo, dijon mustard and dill pickles on toast) - I realized that I could eat the butts for my sandwich! Yay! And yum! Butt munching!

Second random thought - we all have to have things to look forward to. Ok, I don't know if we all have to, I know that I like to have things to look forward to. Sometimes I only have teeny, weeny things to look forward to - like my ear working again - or my next breath - that sort of thing. Other times, it is playing a game on the xbox, checking my email (hoping for a message that will rock my world (in a happy way)), eating yummy food. And at still other times, I have larger things on the horizon, like another trip of some kind, or a visit from a friend etc. Right now, I have a new-to-me brew pub to visit. Current plan is for Tuesday with fallback day on Wednesday. They have two for one tastings on Tuesday and Wednesday (yes, I am parsimonious). The other day, at a celebration of 30 years in business for a local company, I had G.C. Starkey's Stout and it was darn tasty. I hadn't heard of them before and they are only 30 minutes away (by car). Woo hoo!

Mom News - I really do fear that the time is coming that I will have to take the next step in her care. Either get someone in here a lot more frequently, or find a home for her to rest her weary head. For those who aren't around her daily, the drastic changes might not be noticeable. Frankly, I am astounded by the sporadically continuous descent into brainlessness. She is beginning to not consistently recognize me. Especially when I am gone for a long time - like when I have an all day show at the Smith. And she is consistently not remembering more and more (if that makes any sense). And she is beginning to lose track of where she is - even when she is in her own home. Sigh. Any thoughts are appreciated.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I bought a grenade

I bought a grenade. And I used it. But no one was killed. Woo hoo! Does anyone else think it is crazy that people are allowed to walk around with weapons of killing, like assault rifles, and yet, walking around with an alcoholic beverage is against the law in most places? Oh, by the way, the grenade I am talking about is half a growler. I had never heard the term before. Anyone? I bought a grenade of oatmeal stout from Climbing Bines - which is correct - Bines are different from Vines - look it up if you don't believe me. I will write about Climbing Bines in my Brewpub blog, even though they aren't a brewpub. They are, at least, a local brewery! Yay local breweries!

So, what has been going on at Chez Schoen-René? A whole lot of nothing. Some busy-ness. Some indolence. Some sitting and staring at my room and thinking - wow, I could use someone to help me do some cleaning. And what should pop into my head? "Everybody ought to have a maid" from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Love that show. It was the second show I directed in college. I think I saw it in High School, with Chris Clemenson playing one of the parts. Speaking of college and high school - nice segue, right? (I would really like to have a Segway, by the way...) - it is my 30th college and 35th high school reunion this year and I consciously chose to not do anything about either of them. Yay!

Oh, some of the business (busy-ness) was working at the Smith. We had a band - The Lone Bellow - come in for a show. They were quite good - though not many people came to see them at our venue. I don't get (as in "understand") how some shows sell really well and others don't. Capitalism sucks. Just sayin'!

Mom news: she is getting more befuddled but so far we are still managing. Mary Gerhart came for a visit, but I was at the Smith, so I don't know how it went. Getting information from mom is a hit-or-miss prospect. I hope it was a good visit and didn't confuse her too much. I can't tell any longer if visits are good for her or just upset her. Sigh.

Feels like a lame post. But, better than nothing, right?


Saturday, May 31, 2014

A Good Smith Day

So, here it is Saturday, three days since we got back, seems like a lot longer, and I haven't been able to finish a blog post. I hope to do so today, since I really don't have much else going on. 

Yes, I have a day off from the Smith. Yippee! Not that I have been working there an inordinate amount. But I have been working there. Speaking of which, I had a great Smith day yesterday.

What I mean about a good Smith day is that I got a lot of things done and learned a few things as well. I actually was there twice. In the morning, I hung a banner in the front foyer. That entailed a bit of ladder climbing, which entailed a bit of ladder carrying. I also learned about something called "Oops" or as Kelly calls it, "Goo be Gone." It took tape residue off glass really easily! Yay! Now, we just need somebody to go around the Smith and de-tape more glass bits!

I also called the electricians and told them that they had a green light to do some electrical upgrades and clean-ups that we have been interested in doing. Like getting people out of circuit breaker boxes and putting in light switches for safety. And putting in some permanent work lights for working on the stage. Yippee!

My mind is not working as well as I would like. I can't remember if I called the lighting company - ETC - to ask about the blinking dimmers yesterday or earlier. Anyway, they suggested vacuuming them out, which I did yesterday. In the afternoon, actually. Back to the morning. I spent a good amount of time playing with the slide show. I added a couple of slides, which can take a few minutes, or can take a lot longer if I need to build the slide from scratch. And I think that was my morning.

In the afternoon, as I mentioned, I vacuumed the dimmers free from dust. This was a bit of an ordeal. I had to figure out how to turn the power off to the dimmers. I couldn't tell from the labels in the circuit box which ones controlled the dimmer pack. So I turned off the breaker in the electric room. Oops. Not a major oops, but a good solid minor oops. Turning that off turned off the whole stage left side of the theatre, including all of the outlets in the center of the auditorium. Which meant that one of our two internet wifi routers got turned off. The one that Kelly and I use for our email. Oops. And, on coming back into the theatre, I noticed that something looked different. It took me a minute to realize that I was looking at the fire curtain! Oops. 

No time to worry about that - I needed to vacuum the dimmers and do a few other things before our "press event" that evening. Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum. That was rewarding. Then power on, viola, internet service restored, and fire curtain, hmm, not going up. Why is that? Oh, right, the power is off failsafe thingie. Up another, very tall ladder, and after a good bunch of tugging, got the thingie in the thingie and the other thingie magnetically attached to the last thingie. Problem solved and bye bye fire curtain!

Next up, adding sound to the previews. Which I did. Only to find that it was going to take more than an hour to get it up on the film server. And I just plain ran out of time. Oh well. 

The event went smoothly, with a bunch of running up and down the stairs to the projection booth. Yay for exercise in the line of duty. 

So, all in all a good Smith Day. I learned, I played, I cleaned, and life is good.