serendipitous reflections

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I won on Blingo

OK, this is just too ironic. Jeni and I have been using Blingo for our searches for about two years, I would say. In that time, we have won probably four movie tickets, which is a nice perk for searching the internet. In that time, Blingo had been using Google to retrieve its search results. So in recent Blingo history they have been bought by Publisher's Clearing House and also switched away from Google and to Yahoo, MSN Live and Ask. The problem is that the results from those searches are very disorganized and less functional than the results from just Google. So I got tired of this and decided to drop them an email saying, essentially, that I hope they are working to clean up their search results. And then, Thursday afternoon at lunch, I did a search (actually mistyped the word) and won! So I went with another movie ticket, bring our current total of movie tickets waiting for a movie worth seeing to four.
Want to try to win with Blingo, too? Sign up under me, and if you win, I win too!


Thursday, April 24, 2008

Grade school superheroes

When I was in fourth grade, I lived in Kenner, Louisiana, a suburb of New Orleans, and I was bused to Harold Keller Elementary School for the Gifted and Talented program there. I guess you can't call kids "gifted" or "talented" anymore, but you could back in the early 80s. It was kind of like the opposite of Everybody Hates Chris with me being bused to a central New Orleans magnet school. The G&T class pulled me out of some of my other classes, which made things hard for me and Mrs. Washington, who loved to use the expression "tough cookie" because she couldn't say "I don't give a shit." (Oh, I hate to hear "tough cookie" to this day...)

But in the Gifted and Talented class one of our assignments was to create our own superhero. We had Stan Lee's "How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way" and we traced the superhero, then designed his outfit and powers and everything. Then to top things off, we had a day that we were supposed to dress like our superhero. (I think they were trying to get us killed, I really do.)

So my superhero was ... wait for it ... Math Man. OK, don't ask me why, because I can't remember. This just flooded back to me the other day. I remember a brown and yellow outfit, possibly because this was the early 80s and I had a brown sweat suit and Mom put yellow felt math symbols in a Superman shape on the chest. I was so thrilled with Math Man back then. Now, I just imaging exclamations that Math Man would make, like, "Something just doesn't add up!" or "Come on, (insert sidekick name here, let's just say Binary Boy, for fun), let's divide and conquer!"

In the end, though, I don't see much of a future for Math Man. I don't know what his super power was, and with the popularity of graphing calculators, and the general unpopularity of math, I just don't think he'd catch on in the hearts of the American public. Still, I bet somewhere in Mom and Dad's basement there's a sheet with Math Man's drawing and a list of his abilities, which probably includes the ability to figure out an appropriate tip after dinner.


Monday, April 21, 2008

Clara Ann came for a visit

Sweet Clara Ann
Originally uploaded by jenianddean
Dean and I worked in the yard for about 9 hours weeding, planting, mulching, mowing, watering and all the while we had a little helper. Clara Ann came and spent the afternoon with us yesterday. (Gracie was enjoying her afternoon with Lisa and Brian at Princesses on Ice.) Clara Ann loved being outside. She toddled around and played with a giant green ball. She put her tiny little fingers in the dirt and pulled leaves off some trees. When we needed her to, she played in her "fortress." And the whole time she just laughed and smiled and blew kisses. She is such a sweet child. She has such a wonderful disposition. Dean and I can't wait for her to come back and visit again.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Thirteen years


I love and miss you everyday....


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Long-overdue post

I've been a little lax lately about making some posts. Maybe I focus more on the cat's blog because, well, honestly, it's more fun, we get more visitors and more comments -- plus, come on, they're cats and demand the attention. But I feel I owe my life a post or two, too.

Jeni is still up in Bluefield with Lisa and Brian, helping out with the girls while Lisa deals with her family and the loss of her uncle CD to cancer. We actually saw snow on Sunday in Bluefield, which is crazy to have snow on April 13. Jeni said it continue after I left, and that Monday there was visible accumulation on the top of the mountain. It was nice to go back to Bluefield and have a hot dog from Dairy Queen done right, with the sides of the buns cut and toasted. It just tastes better. And we also went to Trey King, the local Chinese restaurant. Some of the comforts of home. Still, it's odd to drive past Jeni's old house and see the old pine trees cut down. But Bluefield, despite the growth and changes, is always going to remain Bluefield, and that is equally sad and comforting.

I think I would starve, or sustain on cereal, if I was single. It's not that I can't cook, but that I lose my appetite when I'm home alone. I guess I'm spoiled by having Jeni, who loves to cook, and does it so well.

You know, people on the internet can be so nice, and caring. Today is Jasper's birthday. He's six today. I uploaded a bunch of old kitten pictures of Jasper to Flickr that Jeni had scanned in, and I got a very concerned email from one of our contacts who noticed that I posted all these kitten pictures of Jasper. She was concerned that maybe he was in ill health. And that is so cool, and touching, and makes me appreciate the effort we put into posting pictures and cultivating some of these online relationships, because there are good people out there.

I wandered over to the Fabulist, which is one of my favorite websites to kill time on, because they always manage to direct me somewhere else interesting. And now, I am going to send you somewhere interesting too... (right after I change songs...)

I claim no originality in finding these links, they all came from the Fabulist, but they are cool, so check them out. First, at The Plug, Jay left a disposable camera tied to a bench, with a note asking for people to take pictures with it, and that he would return that night. And he posted the pictures. (Pictures are from Virginia Highlands in Atlanta) Also at The Plug is the certificate of "The Best I've Seen All Day" which is just nice, really, to see people pleased for being acknowledged, and a very funny story about how he tried to use a message in a bottle to decide if he should continue with The Plug, or to give it up.

And then there was the link to the inflatable mattress that looks like a slice of toast, just because.

Or the Black Cab Sessions, concerts performed in the back of London taxis. I guess this is the evolution of Cash Cab.

OK, maybe that will make up for the lack of posts by me. Maybe I'll surprise you and post again tomorrow. (This rambling is what you get when Jeni goes out of town and I have a whole lunch hour to listen to TMBG and type.)

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Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Shipping back in time

We ordered a new computer for work, which came into my office and my old computer moved to the insurance department so that they are all still on Windows XP ... So I checked my email on my new computer, which arrived on the 7th, and I get an email today, the 9th, telling me that my computer has been shipped on the 8th, and should arrive on the 7th. I read it twice to make sure, but that's what it says...

Also, I saw this the other day driving home and wished I had thought to keep the old camera in the car just for moments like this one. I'm driving down the interstate and am passing a motorcycle. There is a box on the back of the motorcycle bungee corded onto the back. At first, I thought it was a case of beer and thought that was kind of funny, but as I looked closer I saw that it was a motorcycle helmet, and that the driver of the motorcycle was not wearing a helmet. If that's not the picture of irony, I don't know what is.


Tuesday, April 08, 2008

A few new things around the yard...

The azeleas are blooming in the front yard....

And the cherry tree is blooming in the backyard.....
I love spring!

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