What I Did on the First Day of Spring

first day of spring

I swore a lot.

You know, just for the record, way back in the day when I was young Spring didn’t officially begin until the twenty-first day of March.  When things change I always like to find someone to blame for it, and in this case it’s astronomers and calendar manufacturers and people with a warped sense of humor.

Spring is currently being reduced by approximately one minute per year and winter by about one-half minute per year. Summer is gaining the minute lost from spring, and autumn is gaining the half-minute lost from winter. Winter is the therefore the shortest astronomical season, and getting shorter all the time.

If you don’t believe that, good for you.  It doesn’t sound even remotely realistic to me either, especially when I’m looking out the kitchen window at eight o’clock in the morning on the 20th of March at a raging blizzard.

So back to the swearing part of my day.  W has already replaced my winter tires with summer tires because it’s what he does every March just before a major snow squall.  There’s no reasoning with him on this so I don’t even bother anymore.  I just get in my car and drive all over the road cursing non stop for however long it takes me to get where I’m going.  It’s good that I get this out of my system before I start work.  And that no one has to listen to it but me.  It’s therapeutic.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

So I did make it through the crappy weather to my destination where I worked all day.  Then I did some grocery shopping and drove home on mostly bare roads because the snow melts more quickly when a lot of maniacs are driving their cars on it.  And I made a big pot of chili.  Because it’s the first day of Spring and we need to eat something hot to thaw us out.

spring 001
I also took this lovely spring picture in our back yard.  I think the icicles on the lawn chair are a nice touch.  I’m not sure why the little tables are on top of the chairs but I’m sure W would have some crazy long and detailed explanation for it if I were foolish enough to ask him about it.  So I won’t.

I’m not convinced that today was a real spring day.  Maybe it’s still supposed to be the twenty-first after all and tomorrow we’ll get a better surprise.

Time Slips Away

This is my first ever (and perhaps my only ever) attempt at a slide show.  Whew.

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It took a considerable amount of time to put this together, even without captions, so I’ll just add one sweeping comment at the end here to say “What?  Doesn’t everybody put balloons on their Christmas tree?”

Terms of Endearment

eye rolling

Mental Floss (where knowledge junkies get their fix) has a page on Facebook from which I have shamelessly stolen this link because it’s SO worth sharing.  You need never run out of cutesy names for your spouse, children, pets, and best friends ever again.

1. “Mon chou”

French, meaning “my cabbage.”

2. “Schnuckiputzi”

German for “cutie pie.”

3. “Sötnos”

“Sweet nose” in Swedish.

4. “Meu Chuchuzinho”

Portuguese for “my little squash.”

5. “Moya Solnishka”

Russian for “my little sun.”

6. “Mijn Bolleke”

“My little round thing” in Flemish.

7. “Bogárkám”

Hungarian, meaning “my little bug.”

8. “Mi cielito”

“My little sky” in Spanish.

9. “Mijn poepie”

A quirky Dutch term for “my little poop.”

10. “Matakia mou”

Greek for “my little eyes.”

11. “Microbino mio”

“My little microbe” in Italian.

12. “Moosh bekhoradet”

“May a mouse eat you” in Persian.

13. “Mo Chuisle”

Irish for “my pulse.”

14. “Min guldklump”

Danish, meaning “my gold nugget.”

15. “Ma puce”

French for “my flea.”

Personally I am now questioning the sanity of the Persians and the Dutch.

Adding to the fun, here’s another link from Mental Floss with alternatives to saying a simple hello.

1) “What’s the craic?”

How they say “What’s up?” in Ireland. The craic (pronounced “crack”) is the news, gossip, latest goings-on, or the fun times to be planned.

2) “How hops it?”

Be classically cool with this late 19th-century slang for “How’s it going?”

3) “Ahoy”

Add a little jaunty excitement by getting into pirate mode.

4) [Hat tip]

Be the strong, silent type and forgo words entirely with an elegant tip of your hat.

5) “There he/she is!”

Make someone feel like the man or the woman of the hour.

6) “Ciao”

Feeling friendly and cosmopolitan? “Ciao” will set the mood. Add a kiss on each cheek for authenticity.

7) “S.P.D.S.V.B.E.E.V”

Want to write a letter with a classical Latin feel? Open with this abbreviation for Salute plurimam dicit. Si vales, bene est, ego valeo. “Many greetings. If you’re well, then that’s good, and I’m well too.”

8) “Salutations”

Show off your verbal dexterity with this gentleman’s greeting.

9) “Greetings”

Or keep it simple and use the word that means just what it says.

10) “Howdy”

Keep it casual, cowpoke, or get fancier with a full-on “Howdydo?”

11) “Aloha”

Bring a little mellow sunshine to your interactions by greeting the Hawaiian way.

12) “Namaste”

Start with a show of respect. This peaceful greeting comes from the Sanskrit for “I bow to you.”

13) “How’s tricks?”

You’ve got to smile when you dust off this gem from the 1920s.

14) “Breaker, breaker”

Open the conversation like a trucker on a CB radio.

15) “Well, look at you!”

Reminiscent of the sweet way your grandma used to express how impressed she was with you. Why not spread the love around with this opening?

And why not choose a random number from each list and combine the two??  It’s not like you have anything better to do on a Sunday, right?  Well maybe you do.  I don’t.

So –  How hops it, schnuckiputzi?  Microbino mio – well – just look at you!

The possibilities are truly mind-boggling. But that’s what Mental Floss is all about, boggles for the mind.  And there you go.  Don’t ever say I have never contributed to your brain scrambled weekend.

endearment

Summerfly

I don't normally have Fridays off, but when I do, not everyone can keep up with me.

I don’t normally have Fridays off, but when I do, not everyone can keep up with me.

Sometimes things to talk about come in the mail or mysteriously surface during a clean-up and neither will leave your head until you forcibly remove them.  At least that’s been my experience.  For today.  Tomorrow could be another whole ball of wax. (Where did that strange expression come from? I tried looking it up, but it seems no one can agree on its exact origin and after reading the third or fourth educated guess I lost interest.)

Anyway, after waiting all week for it, an invoice/receipt arrived at last in the mail today.  I am sharing part of it here because I think it’s pretty exciting.

itinerary 001

If all goes well, I will be celebrating my May 13th birthday in Athens this year.  Santorini is one of the places my brother visited and loved and thought he would like to return to see again some day but he never got the chance.  So this trip is a family holiday to remember him.  Good Gawd, look at all those island ferry transfers across the deep dark sea.  I hope they make good wine in Greece.

The other thing I’m sharing surfaced from a filing cabinet, in a file folder labeled ‘recipes’.  Who in the world prints off random recipes from the internet and files them away and ignores them for a decade?  Never mind, we already know the answer to that.  Inside this folder I also found a copy of a Christmas letter written by our cats in 1997, a three-fold religious pamphlet and a letter from a fitness spa, but there was something else in there even MORE interesting.  I can picture you rolling your eyes and sighing but sorry, that’s not going to stop me.  Here are the amazing printed words I found with no title and no explanation.

In another younger day I could dream the time away
In the universe inside my room
And the world was really mine from June until September
And if it wasn’t really so I was lucky not to know
And I was lucky not to wonder why
Because the summer time is all that I remember

A summer fly was buzzin’ every night when I was young
In the gentle world my child-like senses knew
And the world was just my cousin
And the wind was just the tongue
In the voice my lonely moments listened to

And I look at me today all the dreams have gone away
And I’m where I never thought I would be
Seeing things I never thought I would see happening to me
And I lay awake at night til the darkness turns to light
Hearing voices calling out my name
Droning over and again the same message to me

Crying who’s your partner, who’s your darlin’, who’s your baby now?
Who wakes up at night to pull you in
But it don’t matter, you’ll just make her lonely anyhow
I don’t know why you even try to win

At first I thought it was a poem but then I remembered it’s the lyrics to a song and went searching for it on YouTube.  It’s amazing what’s on that site and the stuff that comes up and how much time can go flying by while you’re sitting on the living room couch with your I-Pad and a gigantic cup of coffee.

If you don’t know this song but like the words and the kind of sad and dreamy way they sound in your head, I think you’re going to love the music.  There was some method to my madness, writing it down and putting it away in safekeeping to be discovered again on some very distant future Friday off.

Picture Yourself

lucy in the sky 001Lucy in the

Sky with

Diamonds

Picture yourself in a boat on a river
With tangerine trees and marmalade skies
Somebody calls you, you answer quite slowly
A girl with kaleidoscope eyes

Cellophane flowers of yellow and green
Towering over your head
Look for the girl with the sun in her eyes
And she’s gone

Follow her down to a bridge by a fountain
Where rocking horse people eat marshmallow pies
Everyone smiles as you drift past the flowers
That grow so incredibly high

Newspaper taxis appear on the shore
Waiting to take you away
Climb in the back with your head in the clouds
And you’re gone

Picture yourself on a train in a station
With plasticine porters with looking-glass ties
Suddenly someone is there at the turnstile
The girl with kaleidoscope eyes

This little nostalgic trip back to the 60’s is compliments of the Beatles and their biggest fan, Merbear,  at Knocked Over By A Feather for her Beatles Contest.  Thanks Mer!  Lately I’ve been on my own crazy little contest-entering trip.

And no, I was NOT high when I did the art work, but in case you feel like you are now, after staring at it for a while,  I would just like to point out that the orange background is an actual picture of a jar of marmalade. I sure hope Paul is impressed and didn’t miss that.