Back to Business, Yet Again

It’s Wednesday night, and it only took me three days to get caught up from my week off. I believe this was done in record time.

The pile of stuff on my desk at work was manageable. It was the home-stuff that I needed help with desperately. For some reason, my Dear Mr. Demonic found a way to get around doing the laundry. This could be because he has enough underwear to tide him over for a month. I was also welcomed home by a refrigerator full of nothing. All of the mail sat on the island counter top waiting for tending.

Mr. Demonic has come a long way since I married him twenty-one and a half years ago. When I was in the hospital giving birth to my oldest, he managed to somehow break the washing machine. I believe he thought the selector knob required far more muscle than needed. That was an expensive five days away.

Luckily, no major catastrophes occurred while I was away on this trip. For one thing, my lovebird survived. My lovebird is extremely tough anyway. She thinks she’s human, and stomps around the house instead of flying. She has beaten up on three cats in the past six years. My being away hasn’t been so rosy for other animals in the house. There was the one time I went to Colorado for a weekend for my 20th high school reunion. Mr. Demonic stayed home with the baby D’s while I went away. When I returned home, I thought the house was curiously quiet. We had a parakeet named Petey then, and he used to make a lot of noise. When I looked into Petey’s cage, he was hanging upside down from his perch. And no, he wasn’t playing, he was dead. Mr. D had forgotten to feed and water Petey.

I suppose since the animals were still breathing and the house hadn’t burned down, I should consider myself among the fortunate.

It’s so very different when Mr. D goes out of town. With him away, I manage to get a lot more done. One time I painted a bathroom sea foam green, and decorated it with shells we had gathered from previous shoreline trips. Last year, I took his prized wine prints in (which had been gathering dust for two years) and had them matted and framed. Another time, I purchased an unfinished piece of furniture and had the cabinet stained and positioned in the kitchen before he returned.

Hmm… If it warms up, I will have to start yard work, which was preempted by an early winter. The tomato plants are still frozen in their cages, and they need to be removed. My 80-year-old lilac bush fell over from an ice storm, and I could saw it down. I could plant seeds inside, since it’s too cold yet to plant them outside.

I think I’ll be back to business this weekend.

It’s Such a Small World, and I Don’t Have Much Time


First off, I have to say that someone put that earworm “It’s a Small World” into my head, and now all I can think of is the Disney music which goes with that infernal ride. Whoever dreamed that one up should be executed by hanging, lethal injection or firing squad, and all reminders of the “small world” should be thrown into a bonfire. For those of us suffering the post traumatic stress syndrome – earworm effects, we should all be given unlimited psychiatric services provided by DisneyCorp.

I am reminded of how small the world is when learning MIB and I like the same Subway sandwiches. I’m also reminded when my baby sister tells me her best friend moved here and works at a computer place where one of my ex-employees and ex-tenants works, and they know each other. I don’t need Disney to blast that mantra to me.

Ah, now that I’ve gotten that off my chest…

I forgot that I spent Thanksgiving putting up my Christmas tree. It’s an artificial one that I’ve had for fifteen years. (If you want to, you can read about it here:

Fifteen years is a long time in Christmas tree years. I believe it’s a long time in dog years and human years. During assembly, I noticed my tree was getting a little worn. Some of its limbs have lost their snap. Some have twisted off completely. It’s a magnificent tree, but I may have to retire it next year, hopefully to a shelter or school where it will get a couple more years of use.

This morning, I walked through the living room where the tree was, on the way to giving my bird some water. In tripping over boxes, I realized I haven’t finished putting it up yet! I was waylaid by the Thanksgiving turkey. Now I will have to find the time to finish putting up the ornaments, and I’m not sure when that will be. Last year, the same problem existed. I didn’t take it down until the end of January.

My dilemma is that I have too many commitments and not enough time. This is a huge problem. I started rewriting my novel for NaNoWriMo and became stalled by sickness and travel. In a way, I feel like like a loser for not keeping my head on task. I do feel good in that now I believe I have developed the story and the characters; it’s just a matter of getting everything down perfectly.

I’ve also not done much Christmas shopping yet. Christmas will be a low-key event this year. I don’t want anything, really. My son and his girlfriend will be here two weeks, and that’s present enough for me. My son, likewise, doesn’t want anything. He’s happy for the plane tickets. My husband, I’m not sure. He’s extremely difficult to buy for. Now, my daughter, she will come up with a catalog-styled booklet of her wish list. I told her that since times are not as flush as the last two years, she will not be receiving all that’s on her list.

I can’t believe it’s the end of November. Where does the time go?

How the Student Symphony Reminds Me of Insects

My daughter is principal flutist in one of the county’s youth symphonies. Last Thursday was their first performance. There are other items I could write about regarding this performance, but some of those things are making me very angry, so I thought I would concentrate on something more positive.

I arrived at the hall slightly late, because I was stuck in a traffic jam on the highway. It took 35 minutes to go from exit 62 to exit 69, and I had another thirty miles to go. Things weren’t looking very bright for me to get there on time. Once we edged past the accident, traffic picked up to the usual 80 miles an hour plus. Though I normally am not a speeder, it was helpful to be able to do so, and I was only about five minutes late.

I love watching music being played. We have season tickets to the symphony, and our box seats are just to stage right. We are parallel to the conductor and can read the music from the violinists’ stands. For the youth symphony, they borrow a hall at a local high school, which has nice acoustics and furnishings. It is first come/first served for seating. Most parents arrive early to secure the best spots.

As I settled in, the performers came onto the stage. Most are high school students, and the orchestra is arranged differently than a traditional one. For one thing, there are 38 violinists, only six cellists, and six violists. My daughter’s flute section has six flutists as well.

From my vantage point in the nose bleed section, the entire thing reminded me of a summer garden full of insects. The violinists were the gnats, buzzing furiously. The cellists and violas were the mosquitos, with their lower pitched buzzing. The basses were the giant beetles, lumbering about. The flutes were the butterflies, floating serenely above the garden. I thought of the horn section as being the cicadas, crickets and grasshoppers, making blurting noises. The percussionists came in like the lawn cutters, and all was orchestrated by the owner of the garden.

The music was all “modern” classical, which included a Tchaikovsky clarinet piece, Prokofiev, and something called “4’33″” which is four minutes and thirty-three seconds of silence. I take it the Orkin man was there at the garden immediately preceding that piece.


This has been my condition since yesterday. I’ve been told by a dermatologist that I am mildly allergic to changes in barometric pressure. When I lived in a Rocky Mountain state, I would break out into hives a few hours before a snowstorm. Now that I’m a flat-lander, the differences are subtle yet still there. The temperature went from 60 and balmy on Sunday to cold, windy and sleeting today, and my body responded in kind.

In between was yesterday. My violin, which is only a few years old and so the wood is not yet seasoned to the changes in climate, managed to become incredibly untuned. When this happens, I must take it to my teacher for a remedial tuning. A stiff and biting wind kicked up, and I ran from my car to her door in an effort to keep my instrument reasonably warm. After she had worked her magic, I ran back outside, hoping my car hadn’t lost any heat in the five minutes I was gone.

When I returned to work from my errand, I felt flush and foggy-headed. I’d been battling a cold since the weekend. (“Fighting” a cold. Heh… Makes it sound like I’ve been in the trenches with my AK47 and a dozen hand grenades attached to my belt, when really I’ve been overdosing on green tea and orange juice.)

I am too busy to be sick. However, I do not mind foggy-headedness. People admire you for dragging your sorry butt into work, and they are so grateful for your presence that they will overlook the fact that you cannot concentrate for more than a few seconds at a time and you therefore make clerical errors most nine-year-olds would notice.

In my world, I surmise that most people are surviving on foggy-headedness as a normal personality trait. I work with students, and many of them can’t think out a problem. I can’t say if this is a direct result of parenting, schooling or even other environmental issues. I don’t think there is just one thing to blame any of this on.

Come to think of it, there aren’t many clear thinkers even among our leaders and celebrities. No one has come up with a definitive way to end war and poverty. Some high-profile mothers don’t wear underwear and make poor choices.

Heh… And the world keeps spinning…