Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Hump Day Humor: Doggie Dilemma

<a href='http://www.bing.com/videos/browse?mkt=en-us&amp;vid=fd44f318-09c3-46b2-8183-ee58f9b658e8&amp;from=&amp;src=v5:embed::' target='_new' title='Doggie&#39;s Dilemma' >Video: Doggie&#39;s Dilemma</a>

(hat tip John)

ANSWER - Tuesday Trivia: Beverages

In Venice in the mid-17th century, what newly discovered drink - with purported medicinal benefits - was sold on the street by lemonade vendors?

Coffee. The first coffee house didn't open in Venice until 1683.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tuesday Trivia: Beverages

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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In Venice in the mid-17th century, what newly discovered drink - with purported medicinal benefits - was sold on the street by lemonade vendors?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Looks Don't Always Kill

As I finished my run and turned into the walkway up to my house, I caught the movement before I actually saw him. I mistakenly thought he was a neighbor's cat at first.

And then I saw the beady eyes and knew he was no cat.

Tumbleweeds blew across the dusty street as we stared each other down. Each of us willing the other to make the first move, but neither wanting to actually move.

We weighed and measured each other for strengths and weaknesses. I was bigger, yet he was quicker.

My fingers twitched at the keys in my hand.

After a few tense seconds during which you could hear the strains of a soundtrack from a Western movie, he turned and sauntered off into the darkness of the pre-sunrise morning.

As I passed on my way to the front door, I paused to watch him leave.

Possums may be able to play dead but stare them down long enough and they'll walk off.

Friday, March 23, 2012

March PhotoaDay

There is a blogger in Australia who has created a photo a day challenge. I don't know how long she's been doing it. I first participated in January, skipped February and have been playing along for March. Everything month she posts a lists of daily prompts and you take a picture. The picture can be closely related to the prompt or just inspired by it.

Here are some of my favorites from this month so far:

A Sign



Bedside




Corner of My House



Delicious



Funny



Green



Red



Something I Wore



Window


You can follow me on Twitter or Instagram (user name: beckymochaface) for my daily photos.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

I give myself even odds to finish this month

You know what's awesome? Blogging about a problem and having four people call, email and text you with solutions.

That's what happened when I blogged last week about the hinges on our bathroom cabinets being painted over and difficult to get off.

Luckily, we didn't even need any of the tips we were given as a few nights later, John was able to get the hinges off the doors with some patience and elbow grease.

So you would think I'd have at least one side of those doors painted by now. And unfortunately for you, you would be wrong. But then again you're the one crazy enough to bet on me finishing these cabinets in one month. It's taken me two months just to get as far as I have. And we all remember the time I refinished the kitchen cabinets. That took four months.

I have however managed to sand the doors, which is the first step. Well the first step after removing the doors. So I guess that makes it the second step. Yeah. I've sanded the cabinet doors, which is the first second step.

And Life got in the way of further progress both this weekend and this week. But there's still 9 days left of the month. So who knows, maybe I'll get them painted yet.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tuesday Trivia: Animals

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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What do crocodiles do to help themselves dive deeper and remain submerged longer?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Bruised

Saturday night I went with a couple friends to a Chinese foot spa for massages. I had never been before so I was a little nervous. But luckily my friends had clued me in so when I walked into a room of six large comfy recliners instead of individual rooms with single tables, I didn't freak or accidentally get naked.

After I plopped myself down in a chair next to my friend and soaked my feet in warm water for a few minutes, my massage began. The therapist had the tiniest hands, and she worked on my feet like she had a mission. A mission of pain. Yet the rubbing of my feets didn't hurt. It felt great. Except for when she was working on the toes. That tickled. She spent 40 glorious minutes just rubbing my feets.

And then that dominatrix pretending to be a masseuse had me flip over so the real torture could begin. You would think that the name of the place (Foot Spa) you would get a foot massage. But you get a full body massage.

The shoulders and neck part was great. A little rougher than I'm used to but nothing I couldn't handle. It was when she moved to my lower back that was the real beating. I still can't figure out what exactly she was doing back there but whatever it was hurt like hell.

That part was torture, but the whole experience left me so relaxed and dopey that it felt like I had been drinking for hours. I was sore and bruised the next day. Seriously, bruised. They may not have been black and blue, but they were definitely bruises.

And yet I will be going back. I'm addicted to the cheap torture of the Chinese foot spa.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Hump Day Humor: Dollar Shave Club


(hat tip John)

ANSWER - Tuesday Trivia: Presidents

Which two 20th-century presidents belonged to the Baker Street Irregulars, the international organization of Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts?

Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Harry S Truman.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tuesday Trivia: Presidents

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

<><><>

Which two 20th-century presidents belonged to the Baker Street Irregulars, the international organization of Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Best Laid Plans

I had plans for this weekend. Great plans. Involving cabinets. And paint. I even bought the paint.

Alas. It was not meant to be.

Because when I went to take the doors off the cabinets, I discovered that at some point the hinges had been painted over.  Including the screws. And as much as we tried, we only managed to get the doors off but not the hinges off the doors themselves, stripping the screws in the process.

So now we're stuck with doorless cabinets and doors with hinges that - unless you know a super secret way to remove screws that are painted and stripped - won't come off.

And now I'm researching how to build new cabinet doors. What I thought was going to be a fairly simple project has now turned into a monumental task.

Sigh.

The best laid plans...

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Book Review: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks


Henrietta Lacks was a poor farmer who is better known as HeLa in the science community. She was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 1951. During a procedure to treat her cancer, cells were taken without her knowledge and became the first "immortal" human cells to grow in culture. Though she died not long after her diagnosis, her cells continue to live and have helped scientists make huge discoveries.

I thought Henrietta's story was well told by Skloot. She balanced the story behind the woman and the story of the science. I was concerned that the science part would be dull and dry. But that was not the case. Skloot talked about the science and the discoveries in a way that was interesting.

What I think made the book great was not just how evenly Skloot told the story about the science and about Henrietta and her family and how the cells affected them but how Skloot inserted her own story in the book. The story of her journey to discover the woman behind the first immortal human cells and her family. Some may find the inclusion of Skloot's story unnecessary but I thought it made the book more personable. Without it, the book would have been more clinical and not nearly as interesting.

It is a very interesting read.

Disclosure: No one paid me in any way, form or fashion for this review.

Next month - Mudbound by Hillary Jordan

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Tuesday Trivia: Mythology

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

<><><>

In Greek mythology, how many times does the river Styx circle Hades?

Monday, March 5, 2012

March

The wind has begun to pick up. The sun has begun to warm the air. The sky has turned to that perfect shade of blue. Which means it's March. And time for new goals.

Stuff has been accumulating around here for a few years now. So in trying to get rid of the unnecessary, I'm going to throw out or give away something every day for the month of March. Seems like it might be hard to do. But so far, it's been really easy.

Let go of what I can't control. I have a bad habit of making plans and trying to control things that are out of my control. So this month, if it's something I can't control, I'm not going to worry about it. Instead I'm going to focus on what I can control and enjoying Life.
 
As far as home improvement, I only have one goal. And you can probably guess what it is. Paint the cabinets in our bathroom. It's what I've been trying to do the last two months and haven't gotten to it. So by not trying to accomplish anything else home improvement wise I'm hoping I'll actually get it done this month.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Elfa For Life!

Welp. February has officially ended. And once again I didn't meet all of my goals. But dammit. I missed it by only half of one.

- Install a new water heater. Check.
- Paint the master closet. Check.
- Install elfa in the master closet. Check.
- Paint the trim and cabinets in the master bathroom. Half a check.

Now the water heater and elfa we didn't install ourselves. But they were projects on our list so I considered them goals.

And there just wasn't time to get to the trim and the cabinets in our bathroom. But I did get the trim done. Forward progress always makes me feel happy in the pants so I don't feel bad at all about not getting to the cabinets.

The original plan for the closet was to paint the ceiling and walls before the guy came to install the elfa last weekend. Only with the sudden passing of John's grandmother we were out of town for much of the time I was counting on for painting. So we only managed to get one coat of paint on the walls prior to the elfa. 

After it was installed we finished painting and are officially [mostly] moved back into our closet.

You guys. If I loved elfa before, I must be obsessed now. Because my closet is AH-MAH-ZING.

Before:



During the painting:




Installed:




Moved back in:



AH-MAH-ZING