The Snow Game of Fox and Geese

 

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This is a game of Fox and Geese, played by jungle animals, on holiday somewhere in Canada.  Montreal, maybe.  Or Sudbury.

The Rules:

1.  Tramp out a big wagon wheel shape in the snow.  This can be done with one person holding one end of a rope at the centre of the circle, and another person at the other end of the rope plodding through the deep snow while taking shouted instructions from the rest of the group waiting to play.  Or you can all just get out there and eyeball it until everyone agrees it could work.

2.  Using some random criteria, like who has the meanest looking face, choose a player to be the fox.  For this game, Zebra it is.

3.  The ostrich, monkey, giraffe, lion, hippo and elephant are all geese to start the game.

4.  The geese must run around and across the wagon wheel rim and spokes like mad things,  while the fox chases them.  All players must not take short cuts, but stay on the wheel at all times.  No face plants or snow angel breaks allowed if they can be avoided.

5.  The hub of the wheel is a safe zone where the geese may stop long enough to gasp for air, and then they have to get back to running around in a haphazard fashion.  Except always on the wheel.  Don’t forget that.

6.  If a goose (for example, the elephant) is tagged by the fox (in this case, the zebra), the elephant then becomes the new fox and the zebra is a goose.  Identity crises all around, accompanied by a lot of yelling to inform the other players, who may or may not hear you over the sound of their own laboured breathing.

7.  There are no winners or losers in this game, only enthusiastic participants who don’t mind looking like a bunch of shrieking maniacs cavorting and prancing around in a snow-covered field all afternoon.

The game ends when:

– the wagon wheel is trampled into oblivion

– the fox, unable to catch anyone, becomes frustrated and starts to cry (there is no crying in snow games – tears freeze)

– at least three faces or three sets of toes have turned blue, or some related colour to be determined by the group, because of exposure or frost bite

– the bar opens at the hotel (you’re on holiday, remember?)

– the lion gets hungry.  Time to go.

This bit of nonsense Is in response to

The Second Annual Contest of Whatever

at Evil Squirrels Nest

It’s not too late to submit a game related animal post for this contest;  deadline is Sunday morning.  And it’s never too late to get out in the snow and play a pointless snow game with your family and friends or some jungle animals on holiday.  Stupid snow should be good for something.

I Have Answers

Yes, I do.  Ask me anything and I will undoubtedly tell you something which may or may not be helpful, or even relevant.  Like posting this random picture of an odd thing I have hanging in my kitchen.

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Here are 15 questions of questionable origin (to me) and I am too lazy to figure out where they came from in the first place.  But they are good questions, and these three awesome blogging people answered them and now I will be a copy cat and do it too.  Thank you to –

Knocked over by a feather

Mental in the Midwest

To Breathe is to Write

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What do you think you can do but can’t?

I think I can save everybody.  I think I know how every person in trouble or distress should think and act and feel and what needs to happen to have everything turn out right.  Too bad nobody will listen or cooperate.  I’m not even very good at listening to myself, so why am I surprised.

What’s a difficult word for you to pronounce?

There is more than one.

deterioration (because of that middle syllable),

barbiturate (because of that middle “r”)

and  remuneration (because there’s no numeration involved)

I also sometimes used to stumble over initial phone greetings at work (good afternoon, blah blah blah, how may I direct your call), but usually nobody listens to those either.

What are your favorite TV shows from your childhood?

We didn’t own a television set until I was nine years old.  Half my childhood was already over.  I remember watching Howdy Doody, I Love Lucy, Bonanza, Ed Sullivan, Father Knows Best, Dragnet, Gunsmoke, and Red Skelton.  We also got only one channel.  But look at that.  They broadcast some high quality TV.

What are your virtues and vices?

Most of the time I am kind and generous and patient.   However, I can also be an unforgiving snob.  I’m a work in progress.

What’s more important: love, fame, power, or money?

If you are famous and powerful and rich but don’t have love, too bad for you.  Love isn’t something you can demand or buy.  And without it, where’s the happiness?  Having never been famous, rich or powerful myself I’m making assumptions, of course.  But, as usual,  I still think I’m right.

If you could live in any era/time period, when would it be and why?

According to my psychic, I’m a very old soul and I’ve lived in all of them.  This would explain why I’m so smart and know so much.  Or maybe it was all that great TV I used to watch as a kid.

If you had to redo your entire wardrobe with 2 stores, what would they be and why?

I honestly have no idea.  Where do they sell yoga pants and sweat shirts?

Can you recall what you were doing a year ago on this day?

No, but I looked in my blog archives and discovered that on February 21st, 2014,  I was looking through an old journal and laughing at some of the strange things I had on my ‘grateful’ list.  The last half of the book is blank.  I don’t believe I suddenly stopped being grateful.  Probably lost my pen.

Do you have recurring dreams? If so, explain?

There’s a house I dream about a lot, in which I am being pursued by something (or someone) bad.  It has many staircases and hallways and doors and rooms.  I’m afraid, but I’m also very confident that I know lots of good hiding places.  Wow.  A psychiatrist would have a heyday with that one.

What’s your horoscope?

I am Taurus.  Generous, dependable, patient, pleasant and down to earth.  Also stubborn, self-indulgent, materialistic and lazy.  Well, nobody’s perfect.

What does your dream bedroom look like?

I don’t care as long as it’s warm and the bed is comfortable.  A large percentage of the time I will have my eyes shut in there.

What position do you sleep in?

I have a queen sized bed and I sleep on my side on the edge with my feet hanging out.  Hot feet are the worst.

What are your all time favorite films?

There’s only a handful of films that I’ve watched more than once.  Probably for the same reason that I don’t want to go back and relive any of my past  lifetimes.  Been there, done that, on to the next adventure.  W, on the other hand, can watch a movie a dozen times and never get tired of it.  I watched Bridesmaids three times.  I don’t know what that says about me, but I’m sure it’s probably something good.

What makeup are you currently wearing?

Foundation to even my skin tones (a nice way of saying cover up the blotches and age spots),  eye shadow because I feel naked without it (although it’s hard to see it under those over the eye bags) and lip gloss because chapped lips are just marginally worse than hot feet.  If I’m going somewhere I will add eyeliner and mascara.  But it would have to be somewhere pretty damned important these days.

Do you have neat handwriting? Show us!

imageThis is a large sample in case you want to submit it to an expert for analysis.  To see if the results are in harmony with my Taurian traits.  I think it’s rather sad that cursive writing is going the way of the dinosaur and Ed Sullivan.

Well, that’s enough enlightening crap for this February Saturday.  Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend.  If not, you can always answer these questions yourself to liven things up.  But if you’re busy watching I Love Lucy re-runs,  I understand.

 

For Compassion #1000Speak

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“How would your life be different if…

You stopped making negative judgmental assumptions about people you encounter?

Let today be the day…

You look for the good in everyone you meet and respect their journey.”

Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free   

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This is my contribution to the unique global movement called 1000 Voices for Compassion. Today, the 20th February 2015, over 1000 bloggers worldwide are publishing posts about compassion. It is an effort to spread goodness and compassion in a world torn by strife and violence. Spread the love using the hashtag #1000Speak. Join the 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion group on Facebook.

 

Sharing My World 19

 

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Share Your World – 2015 Week #7

Is the paper money in your possession right now organized sequentially according to denomination and with the bills right side up and facing the same way?

Well, if I had any, it probably would be anally organized, just like that.  I can’t remember the last time I carried cash.  If I need it I find an ATM.  Almost every job I’ve ever had has involved processing payments by cash, credit and debit cards.  I admit it has always annoyed me to have to straighten out the bills in a cash register, turning them all in the same direction.  It’s just so much easier to avoid mistakes when things are all neat and tidy.  Unfortunately, I had a co-worker for years who didn’t understand that concept and spent a lot of her time alternately misplacing and then looking for things.  For a long time I made an attempt at helping her to stay organized, but it wore me out and I gave up.

I’m not saying there aren’t areas of complete chaos in my life.  Like some of my kitchen cupboards for instance.  But that’s why cupboards have doors which close to hold things in place.  Every so often I go on a crusade to sort everything out and add to my garage sale bins.

What is your favorite type of dog?  (can be anything from a specific breed, a stuffed animal or character in a movie)

No favorites here, unless you count all the dogs that are well-behaved and belong to somebody else.  Or the Starbucks dog which sits on a shelf in my bedroom and (with the help of a gargoyle) guards my junk jewelry.  He’s kind of cute and very low maintenance.  So is the gargoyle.  I can’t remember why I have these things.  Would you buy them at a garage sale?

If money was not an issue, would you go on a cruise?  If so where would you go?

Yes, but not an ocean cruise where you can’t see land at all times.  A riverboat cruise on the Rhône river from Switzerland, through France, to the Mediterranean Sea sounds like something I might like.  Especially the part where I have the same room for the entire trip with no packing and unpacking every few days while still going different places and seeing different things.  Or I could just watch a travel show on tv and use the money for something else.   I hear all you travel lovers gasping in disbelief.

Would you dare to sleep in a haunted house overnight?

Sure.  That sounds a lot less scary than being on the ocean.  I’m a very sound sleeper so who knows what might go on around me while I’m oblivious to it all.  Could be a big disappointment for the ghosts.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I’m grateful for a lovely long-weekend visit with kids and grandkids.  There was cake.  Our movie theatre is within grandma-walking-distance so we went to see Paddington Bear.   There weren’t a lot of choices – the other ones playing were inappropriate for young children with violence, crude language, and shades of grey.  I won’t be spending any more money on Christian and Ana.   Sponge Bob was one above that one on my list.

W goes to see the hip surgeon soon and will hopefully be put on a hip replacement list that is not ridiculously long.  Different surgeons have different lists.  What in the world would we do without lists?  All organization would come to a grinding halt.

I’m looking forward to Spring.  Although the chances of it arriving here in the week coming up are slim.  That’s when we’ll have our garage sale, with everything all sequentially organized and right side up and facing in the same direction.

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Sharing My World 18

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Share Your World – 2015 Week #6

What was the last time you went to a new place?

That would be island hopping in Greece, almost a year ago.  Various family members made the trip to remember my brother, who  loved it there but never got the chance to go back.  So we went back for him.  I even drank a beer in his memory.  Funny thing about Santorini,  his favourite spot, was that travelling up and down its cliffs by bus scared the hell out of me.  Never mind the gondola ride on which I faced the side of the hill rather than look at all that water.  How in the world could you raise children that close to a cliff edge?  With donkeys running around?  Plus be surrounded by ocean everywhere you went?  Those Greek people are incredibly brave.  Maybe there’s something in the olives.

If you were or are a writer do you prefer writing short stories, poems or novels, other?  And what type of genre would you prefer?

I fancy myself a writer, because I write things and always have.  I have never published anything except blog posts, and I don’t think that counts.  Short stories work with my particular attention span.  And whether I’m good at it or not, I love writing poetry.  I have a big sheet of paper with copious notes about many different types of poetry with the mechanics and rhyming information.  One fine day I will get around to actually using it.  Time is running out to write novels, I’m afraid.  A plot would be an excellent start, but I’ve never come up with one.  Maybe I should just stick to Biography/Memoir.  Soon I will be able to throw in some historical fiction based on my actual life.  And that could slowly turn in to Fantasy if I live long enough.

Out of your five senses (touch, taste, sight, smell, hearing) which is your favorite?

I have five incredible grandchildren, and it would be just as mind-boggling to choose my favourite one in that group as in this one.  Seeing and hearing would maybe be missed the most if they were suddenly gone, but it wouldn’t be the end of the world.  If I didn’t have taste and smell perhaps I might enjoy my own cooking more.  Would losing ones sense of touch mean winter skin wouldn’t feel dry and itchy anymore?  That might be worth a shot.

If 100 people your age were chosen at random, how many do you think you’d find leading a more satisfying life than yours?

My life is 86% satisfying, so the answer is 14.  Well, I had to come up with something using my limited math skills.  But if all of these random one hundred people were asked to write down on a random scrap of paper their definition of a satisfying life, there would be a hundred different sized paper scraps, a hundred different answers, a hundred different regrets, and more than a hundred different reasons for each of them to celebrate the life they were given.  Satisfaction is all in your head.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I can’t remember what happened yesterday, never mind last week.  Oh, wait!  My son turned 39 on Saturday.  I also don’t remember what happened when I was that age myself for an entire year.  I’m sure it was a good time.  This weekend I’m looking forward to a visit from the far-away four grandchildren, and the Valentine’s Day birthday of the closer-to-where-I-live one.  She will be fourteen on the fourteenth.  Time is flying by at an alarming rate.  I’d better get going on that memoir.

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Guacamole For Dummies

 

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This morning before I got out of bed I solemnly promised myself that I would answer the WordPress Daily Post prompt, no matter what it might be or how much I didn’t feel like it.  Unfortunately for whoever might be reading this, here it is.

(Your Thing) For Dummies:  Take a complicated subject you know more about than most people, and explain it to a friend who knows nothing about it at all.

So would you really like to hear all about fitting eyeglasses and contact lenses, doing follow-up adjustments and appointments and assessments?  I didn’t think so.  All you need to know about all of that stuff, really, is to take your problems to a professional.  Don’t do your own adjustments.  Don’t put your glasses in a microwave, a dog’s mouth, or under a moving truck.  When your contact lenses are uncomfortable, get them the hell out of your eyes.  If your glasses don’t sit all perfectly balanced on a flat surface, but look okay on your face, ask yourself if your head is a flat surface.  Then just get on with your day.

My second thought was to explain my artistic process, but the big thing there seems to be how I’m very good at ruining a lot of clothes and desk tops and floors with paint and glue.  And you probably know better than I do how to avoid all of these things already.  If you don’t, I’m sorry, I can’t help you.

Guacamole, on the other hand, is something I can talk about and I guarantee you will learn a couple of new things, even if you think you already know absolutely everything there is to know on the subject.  I’m still in the learning stages myself, but I know there is perfect guacamole out there somewhere, just waiting for me to discover it.

Here are the secrets I have uncovered so far.

1.  Three cloves of garlic for three avocados is probably too much garlic.  Just because you peeled that many does not mean you should use all of them at once.  Your first clue would be how your fridge smells after placing the guacamole inside it in a sealed container, and still being knocked over backwards by the overpowering garlic odor whenever you open the fridge door.

2.  When they say roma tomatoes, they mean tomatoes that aren’t excessively juicy.  Ordinary tomatoes will work if you scoop out all the juicy insides and pat what’s left dry on a paper towel before chopping them up.

3.  The fact that you seem to remember the recipe calling for the juice of half a lime may annoy you.  Or maybe that’s just me.  Anyway, it always seems like such a waste to squeeze out the juice and throw the rest away.  And then there’s that other half of the lime which slowly shrivels up and dies before you can think of something else to do with it.  I’m talking about big limes.  If the lime is tiny, go ahead and juice the whole thing.  However, if you are ever inclined to just throw the entire gigantic peeled lime into your food processor with the chopped onions and garlic, AVOID THE TEMPTATION.  Yes, I am yelling at you.  This is not a good idea unless you want your guacamole to taste like really bad after shave.

4.  If you ignored my warning and did use the entire lime, throwing a bit of sweetener in after the fact to cut the bitterness of the lime will make your guacamole edible.  That’s it.  Delicious is just not going to happen.

5.  If all else fails (and in my case this is always a possibility) print a recipe off the internet and FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS.  Now I’m just yelling at myself.

I sincerely hope this has been helpful advice for the guacamole impaired.  Anything else you need to know, just ask.  Or Wikipedia is also helpful.  I’m not pretending to know everything.  Or anything really.  So, yeah.  You may now get on with your day.

Sharing My World 17

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Share Your World – 2015 Week #5

Do you prefer shopping or going to a park?

Oddly enough, I’m going to say shopping.  But not for groceries, because that kind of shopping is tedious and annoying and causes me to sigh a lot and wish I were somewhere else.  I normally like parks just fine, but this is February and the benches are probably freezing cold.  Compare that to a nice warm store and it’s no contest.  Somehow I inherited a junk collecting gene.  Spending time (and sometimes money) in a store like Home Sense or Pier 1 Imports looking at strange furniture and weird wall décor is a lot more fun than staring at grass.  I’ve always fancied having an antique folding room divider like the ones ladies in movies go behind to undress, throwing random pieces of clothing over the top.  Or one of those willow swing-chairs that hang from the ceiling.  Good thing the price tags on these things are completely out to lunch.

If you were a shoe, what kind would you be and why?

red cat clogsred sheep clogsmoose birkenstocks

Any one of these.  Because they’re interesting and fun and red.  There’s nothing like a pair of red shoes to perk you up on a dull day.  They should make these for seniors.  The ones with the moose look very Canadian.

What’s the story behind a time when you got locked out?

Only ever been locked out of a car a couple of times, unless being locked out was such a traumatic experience that I’ve erased the event from my memory.  We have extra keys for things, in unexpected places.  Or we just forget to lock the door.  Either way, being locked out hasn’t been a problem.

Do you prefer eating foods with nuts or no nuts?

Anything that can have nuts added to it always tastes better with them than without.  I’m thinking of crunchy peanut butter, carrot muffins, brownies, ice cream sundaes, any kind of chocolate.  Nuts are just fine on their own too.  I broke a chunk off one of my molars once while eating peanuts.  So even though I have no nut allergies, those little buggers can still be dangerous.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

Yesterday my audiologist did an hour-long, very thorough, hearing test on me.  I’m grateful that she was excellent at explaining what she was doing and what my results indicated to her.  For low-pitched sounds I have mild hearing loss.  For higher pitched sounds, the loss ranges from moderate to moderately severe in both ears.  The only thing left after that is profound.  Yikes.  So I am a candidate for hearing aids.  If I sit face to face with someone who doesn’t mumble or speed-speak, everything is fine.  I can hear W from pretty much anywhere because his normal method of communication is to shout.  Phone conversations are difficult.  And I know it’s extremely annoying for people when I continually ask them to repeat what they just said.

So, I am grateful to have had that done and paid for by health care.  They will not be so generous with hearing aids, but we’re checking to see what our insurance will cover.  I know when I fit glasses, some people didn’t like the sensation of having everything suddenly look so clear.  The audiologist said it’s sometimes like that with hearing aids too, and could take some perseverance getting used to hearing every little thing again.  I am looking forward to a report being sent to my doctor and to me,  and then I’ll have to decide how much I enjoy being a deaf little old lady.

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