Sunday, January 30, 2011

Whining About the Compact Life

Weekends these days are coming in two parts: The entertaining or social portion, and the getting ready to move into smaller quarters portion. Our plans for the week are similarly bifurcated. What do we want to to, and what do we need to accomplish. Some days it seems that the volume of things in the garage preparing for the epic garage sale is beginning to outstrip the amount of things still in the house. The sobering fact is that we will actually be achieving that balance very soon or we will not be making it in time.

Sami and I went for her annual Birthday Lunch at Red Lobster. She enjoyed crab legs as she does every year, and I got a bowl of clam chowder and the delicious Cheddar Bay Biscuits. I seldom indulge in seafood when I am farther than a few miles from the coast, but this is her favorite restaurant so every year we go. This year I think she is s
showing signs of actual maturity, so an afternoon spent together lunching, shopping, and running all kinds of errands was quite pleasant.

For dinner Shana and I hit Ingrid's Kitchen with some friends for dinner and some vocal jazz music. Good company and great fun. Looking over the menu I was inexplicably drawn to Braunsweiger which was a mainstay of my childhood, but which I have not tasted for years. It was delicious (if admittedly unattractive) and as satisfying as I remember. Ingrid's has changed over the years I have been patronizing it from a little bakery to deli, to a full service restaurant. You can still get the wonderful baked goods and the deli sandwiches but these days also enjoy a tea dance, a cocktail, or a Sunday brunch buffet. Something for everyone, sometimes all at the same time.

This weekend I have been tearing up my "man cave/craft room/office" in earnest. The closet is almost empty, and all the important documents unlikely to be needed immediately are packed up. It's kind of shocking to realize just how much stuff I have been keeping in this room. I guess I should be proud of my ability to keep so much stuff instantly accessible in such a small space. It's been really hard to decide on a small number of knitting books, patterns, and yarn to keep with me while everything is in storage for a few months, and easier than I expected for Shana and I to divest ourselves of about half of our CDs. My Kindle will make all the difference for me, as I can have a large number of books with me at all times. It almost but not quite makes up for being separated from the sight of my books for a while. Six weeks to go before we leave, so it's not too soon to be packing, especially as I realize how much time it is taking to thin out the stuff.

For fans of The Amazing Roxanne: she now has her own page on Dogbook, available from my Facebook. I know some people just can't get enough of her - now they might get too much!

An Astronomy Lesson

I'm always saying someone who thinks he is the center of the universe needs an astronomy lesson. Here is an actual astronomy lesson about our size in the Universe:

Scale from Brad Goodspeed on Vimeo.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Republicans For Child Labor?

Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) argues that banning child labor was unconstitutional. Having hamstrung the Union movement are they really trying to turn back the clock all the way? I'd bet a dollar he's not arguing this in order to put his children to work.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Moving Towards the Compact Life

We are now about eight weeks out from our move to Cape Cod, and efforts to scale down on possessions are in full swing. Sadly, Shana and I take opposing positions on this issue. I resist all efforts to get rid of stuff, and Shana is always ready to sell, give away, or toss any and all stuff. I always think I will need the item again some day, or cannot bear to throw away something "perfectly good" even if I have no foreseeable use for it. Shana will get rid of something, only to find the very next week that she urgently needs to
have that very thing. So far we have not come to a crisis about any one thing, but as we get closer the pain is sure to increase.

Not only are a significant number of things not going to make the cut, but EVERYTHING except for the barest essentials will be in storage for a while. I am feeling very anxious. My Books! My Yarn Stash! My Tool Box! My Sewing Machine! It's enough to make me itch. Everything will be about a mile away and accessible, but I'm still
nervous about it. I've literally never been without my nine cartons of books and choosing just a few to keep with me is really hard. At least with the Internet at my fingertips I will not lack for things to read, and I can research anything I choose without having to dig through the storage unit.

And one more thing to inspire anxiety among the old: apparently two spaces after every period is not done anymore. This convention ended after the introduction of proportional fonts. All the cool kids are only using one space these days. After some research and some thought I can acknowledge the it is obsolete, but it so much a habit for me I can hardly remember to do it. I wonder if it is worse to be inconsistent or old fashioned.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Persimmon, originally uploaded by cinderellenk.

A persimmon is a funny thing. When the leaves are green and the weather is fine it's not at all good to eat. After the leaves fall and there have been some hard freezes it changes to something delicious. It's one of the things in life that needs a little hardship to make it sweet.

I did not blog last weekend - once the events in Arizona became known I retreated into introspection. I've been living in a red state a long time, but have never made a secret that I'm a blue state sort of girl. I've been getting ready lately to move to Massachusetts and have been giving a lot of thought to how much I am going to miss this place I've lived for so many years. Turns out maybe not so much. I did not really believe they would kill us, and cheer on the ones who did the deed. I'm ready to go east without a backwards glance, except at the wide horizons and open spaces that have endeared themselves to my eyes.

I'll miss my children, Shana's family, and a very few friends, but not the politics of Oklahoma, my unfriends, and my frenemies. I'll unfriend them on Facebook and never hear of them again when I leave. I'm doing a drastic purge of my possessions, and to everything I leave behind I'll say "Bon Debarass". Last day at work will be March 15, and drive away day is tentatively scheduled for March 20.