Sunday, June 13, 2010

Shapely, Sharply and Sharks

Hmm... The claim was that she was going to swim from Cape Verde to Trinidad. That would be about 2,400 miles in the frickin' ocean, with sharks and things and shrinkage.

The only problem was that Jennifer Figge would have had to swim 90 miles a day, swimming 10 mph. to make it in the 25 days they said it was accomplished.

So, does it count if most of the time she is on a boat, and for short periods of time she climbs into a shark cage and swims with the fishies?

A writer at compared it to someone saying they were going to walk across the U.S., then on occasion got out of the car and walked a few miles, then got back in the car.

Anyway, Did you know Walter Hunt patented the safety pin on this day in 1825?

What would we do without the safety pin?

Here's another fabulous poster from Poland. I've never seen any of these movies or the TV series. Not my thing, but I love the strangeness of this design. has some more interesting movie posters from around the world. The 'Cujo' poster is well... you just gotta go look for yourself.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Making lemonade out

Well, I've heard of people living in storage units, but never a public loo.

Okay, so it wasn't being used at the time of purchase. In fact the old Victorian public toilet was in bad shape until Tracy Woodhouse and her partner bought the place and decided to convert it into a home.

It's small but cozy (Mail Online has photos) and has a great view.

Good for them. May the wind blow on ya from the right direction.

*A live cam of Scarborough. It could be down there. Should I play some Simon and Garfunkel now?


Okay. : (

La Rose a Color'e des Lunettes

He said to call him Doc. Said he was in town to collect happiness from the townsfolk.

But, there were some in the town who didn't butter up to the Doc. He never talked much, just a word here or there. "Cookie?" he'd ask, which seemed a mighty strange thing for a Doc to ask. He always spoke in some strange language some guessed passed for that french crepe.

When the coach rode into town, the Doc could be seen lurking in the rose bushes and before the strangers had a chance to dismount, Doc would jump out of the bushes with a rose in hand.

"Welcome!" he shouted. "I am the spokesperson here in our tiny, exclusive shallot. Care for some bubbly tea? We are a shy, but a kindly group of merrry makers. Please, when you can spare a moment, take this simple survey, won't you? Aw chante and au revere. Please stop by our seweray later."

On board the stage coach was a tall, good looking man who took a dislike to the doc right away. Something just didn't set right with him. 'What kind of doc lurks in bushes and wants everyone to take a survey?' the tall man asked himself.

He had a job to do, and it didn't involve takin' no surveys or drinkin' any bubbly tea.

"S'cuse me, scuse me, I must interject my opinion here and now," said a man with a vase on his head. "These people are good... no, I mean they are bad. Yes, that's it. Watch my lips move as I talk out of my ass. It's intentional, I tell you, yes, yes, I know everyone and they are rotten to the core..oh, no, they are good, yes, yes, very good. So long now, hello."

The tall man could only shake his head and chuckle. 'Very strange goings on here', he thought. 'I think I'll head over to the diner and grab a bite to eat.'

He took a seat at the counter and watched as the gorgeous waitress with the long brown hair and longer shapely legs walked over to take his order.

"Can I help you tall man?" she asked quietly.

"I'll have a slice of chocolate cake with a glass of milk, please," the tall man replied.

(sigh) "Sorry, tall man, we only serve bubbly tea and cookies. Doc's orders."

"What's going on here, gorgeous lady with the long legs?"

The gorgeous lady with the long hair and the longer legs leaned over and whispered, "Meet me in the general store by the sewing threads in one hour and I will try to explain everything then."

As the tall man waited, he watched the town folk stroll by. 'Something just ain't right. They all seem like they're in some sort of trance, like they been hypnotized.'

Just then, the man with the vase on his head ran up to him. "Run,, stay, stay. Doc is heading this way and he don't  seem happy. Are my lips moving? Oh, I must go.. no, I will stay. Goodbye."

"Tall man, dorme vou, have you taken our survey yet? Do so, quickly. My assistant will be back shortly to assist you with my request. Parlevou and Bonswa."

Just as he was about to let loose with some French of his own, the gorgeous lady came running down the street. And just as Doc was turning the corner, the lady and the doc ran smack into each other.

"I will report you!" screamed the Doc. "Toe the line!"

As the gorgeous lady chuckled and tried to walk past the 300 pound man, her long hair got caught in the Doc's lumberjack coat button and the coat flew off the doc to reveal, not a man, but a sad, little old lady who wore a french corset over her granny pants.

A gasp was heard from all around. The townspeople woke up from their trance and realized they had been duped. They could only look down at their feet and slink away.

The little old lady pointed her bony finger and shouted, "It wasn't me. It was my assistant. I am the Doc, I am the....oh, pepe le peu."

"Come with me, tall man," gestured the gorgeous lady with the long hair and longer legs. "I will make you that cake, but don't expect any roses on it. Too many thorns, wouldn't you agree?"

It Sure Don't Sound French

I always get the jitters when someone mentions "Vacation." Something always goes wrong and it was a guarantee when I was just a wee thingy that before we reached our destination, I would be upchucking in a Folgers coffee can.

Travel did not improve as I got older, especially car trips. The Dells are only a few hours away, but I've only been there once- and that was enough for me.

Hubby and I decided to make the three hour drive for a quick week-end respite. One hour into the trip, the car started to overheat. Instead of stopping to get it fixed, hubby bought several gallon containers of water to fill the radiator whenever the needle entered the red zone. Our three hour ride dragged on to five. The car wasn't the only thing that was boiling over.

The town was fairly quiet when we finally arrived, which was understandable, since the Dells season was nearly over. We managed to wash up a bit and make it downstairs for dinner in the lovely hotel we were staying in. Just as we started to draw in our claws and relax, we heard a cry from another table. We turned to see an older woman choking and grabbing at her throat. It all happened so fast. A dinner guest got up, performed the Heimlich, then calmly went back to his table to finish his dinner. After about a minute of complete silence, everyone resumed pre-crisis positions, but we all sort of glanced out of the corners of our eyes as the elderly woman was escorted out of the room. We ate our meal and went to bed, hoping the next day would put us in a better frame of mind.

Our mood did seem brighter as the sun shone and we practically skipped into town where we then had the worst breakfast imaginable by the snottiest waitress imaginable. We both sat in silence, afraid to move in case Medusa became angry.

After all that gloom, I was still looking forward to the Mighty Duck boat tour on the Wisconsin River to see the glorious sandstone cliffs nature's wrath created.
The river tour was fabulous. It's amazing to see the tips of trees in the water that were covered by the rushing water from the glacier that formed the beautiful cliffs. Taking a hike through the sometimes very narrow passageways was wonderful, as long as you didn't have a 200 pound claustrophobic woman ahead of you.

There is a photograph by H.H.Bennet, taken in 1886, of his son Ashley, leaping on to Stand Rock. Instead of using kids, dogs were putting on a show for the masses. I wasn't crazy about that either, but I did want to see the famous spot.

Our only hope in saving the day was there, up above. There were possibly a dozen people standing below the great stand, looking up, waiting for the show to begin. We waited- then, waited some more. We could hear the dogs howling like bloodhounds nearby, and we smiled and nodded at each other, some more giddy than others with anticipation. But then the baying from the dogs seemed to be farther away. Could it be? We heard a shout. Mutiny! The dogs had decided to take this day to go on strike. One by one we left the Rock.

Tommy Bartlett and his happy, beautiful crew of water acrobats had long departed. It was just as well, since I always think of Janet Lennon as one of the so happy, so healthy, so cheery kids that entertain the smiling blobs on shore. So, that meant either going back into town... or dinner at the restaurant. Town, it was. If my memory is reliable at the telling of this tale, there was a Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum and hubby loved old Ripley. The old bean bank fails after that. I really hate that kind of shit, so, I may have gone 'Walter Mitty', imagining that I was back at the Rock, saving the show by my ability to talk to the animals and convincing them that the show must go on. Instead, I was looking at photos of people with lizard skin and pictures of smiling men standing next to their giant balls of twine.

I'd like to say our adventure ended on a happy note, but let's save that shit for fairy tales. Hubby and I bickered and snapped the whole awful trip back.

But, hey, don't let my experience stop you from heading there. It does have something for everyone. I guess. Keep a look-out for those dogs, won't you?

The French called it 'dalles', or in English, 'slabs' which didn't matter anyway, cause the English twisted the word to 'dells'. Oui, or as the English say, Yup.

*Photo by jmerhe of H.H. Bennett's great photo.

Friday, June 11, 2010

"Bring in the bottled lightning, a clean tumbler and a corkscrew."

Rather Dickens looking. Still, a week-end in Paris sounds lovely.


I Can Explain

It's a perfectly logical conclusion to the beginning of my quest for a Native American funeral song.

It's been over ten years, but still, I search for a song that I have only heard once before. I only know that it is a song for the dead and is sung by a woman with such emotion, while a drum beats slowly in the background. I am haunted by her as much as Detective McPherson was for Laura.

So, I search...

I did find a beautiful song by Walela, which means 'hummingbird' in the Cherokee language. Rita Coolidge formed the band with her sister and niece in 1997. I had never heard of Walela, but I have heard of Coolidge and have admired her fabulous cheekbones which were begotten with Scottish and Cherokee blood.

Another Shameful American History Lesson, Here ->In the 1800's, Native Americans were forced to walk the 'Trail of Tears' or as the white folk called it "Indian removal" As other tribes were moved to the Oklahoma reservations, the Cherokee went to the Supreme Court, who did agree to allow the Cherokee to remain on their chosen land. However, Andrew Jackson had other ideas and he sent an army to forcibly remove them. Because it was in the dead of winter and they were ill prepared for the march, thousands died along the trail.

*Sidebar: Coolidge went to Andrew Jackson High School in Jacksonville, Fl.

In the summer of xx, I fell in love with Rita and Boz Scaggs. I listened to 'We're All Alone' hundreds of times and I cannot say if an 8-track was involved. It's getting blurry._._._

The Walker Brothers did a beautiful version of the song, too, but I don't really care.

The Brothers also sing, 'The sun ain't gonna shine anymore.' and so did Juliet Stevenson and Alan Rickman in one of my most favorite movies. It's a chick flick- a twenty hanky weeper.

Aah, Alan...

Baaaaby, baby...

Thursday, June 10, 2010

It's Pretty Easy Being Greene

In a previous post, I blasted Scott Lee Cohen for running for Lt. Governor of Illinois due to his ugly past that involved domestic abuse and drug abuse. After much pressure, he eventually dropped out of the race. (He now has loftier goals and wants to be Governor)

Now, there is the strange story of Alvin Greene, who lives at home with his dad, has no cell phone, no computer and no job...yet over 100,000 South Carolinians voted for him as the Democratic nominee in the race for Senator.

Greene did no fundraising, had no ads, and of course, no website. He uses the library computer.

In November of last year, Greene was arrested for sending obscene photos over the internet and could get up to a five year sentence if or when a trial is ever set.

You know what? If people are too stupid to look into who these people are who are going to make decisions on their behalf, well, then leave it. Greene is being pressured from the Democratic party to step down but he refuses to do so, and I ask, why should he?

The people have spoken.

Take This Train for a Halloween Freight

Ya really wanna scare on Halloween?  Too bad this tunnel only allows fright trains. I mean, freight trains. I now understand why some peopl...