Sunday, March 31, 2013
Each Easter season, I always enjoyed two things the pageantry of the long weekend in the pews of St. Joseph's and Easter morning on Stevens Avenue. I do think I know which of the festivities Mom and Dad enjoyed most. Holy Thursday. Good Friday. Holy Saturday. Easter Sunday. It seemed I was always at church. And after the 'madhouse' that ensued when four youngsters went pushing and shoving with our baskets all over the house looking for colored eggs dropped off by the Easter bunny, I guess the calm and reverence of the hour long service bought at least Mom and Dad a little solitude from the 'storm'.
And while I'm on the Easter bunny kick. What's the deal with the bunny delivering eggs? Wouldn't an Easter chicken make more sense?
Come on... let's stop livin' the lie.
Enjoy your day.
By the way, I'm forgetting the eggs. I'm heading out early on a quest for Easter java!
Saturday, March 30, 2013
-burn the brush that I cut last fall
-rototill the garden
-rake up remaining leaves
-get the birdhouses out and up
-clean up under the birdfeeders
-get deck furniture out
-check out the hoses
-grill up and running
-plans together to remodel den
-lay a new rug or tile in back hall
-summer project for the backyard
-what to do with the kitchen floor
-get the riding mower tuned
-buy that 4-wheeler
-run to Ossipee Gardens for seedlings
-pick up dead, fallen branches
-clean the garage
... and do about 20-30 more things that I haven't even thought about yet.
But at least I don't have to scrape the bottom of this boat.
Oh, and clean the martini glasses and ready them for the first warm, sunny deck day.
Friday, March 29, 2013
-Sir Walter Scott
A story broke yesterday nearby. A serial rapist, who was convicted of rape, kidnapping and unnatural acts in a Massachusetts town in 1978, was finally captured yesterday in quiet neighborhood, where he had been living for the past 35 years. The details of the horrific rapes of three women leads one to believe, that no matter what he seems today, this is not a good guy. Back in '78, the judge gave him one last weekend to spend with his family, before his incarceration, and he took off like the coward he was.
Did he REALLY think he'd get away with it?
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Sometimes it does feel like I have about 50 things rattling around in my head.
You see, often, I'm in my own 'wonderland'.
"I can't go back to yesterday because I was a different person then."- Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
She ain't buying it though, as you'll hear soon.
Great knees, a killer tartan kilt, a sporran to die for and a pipe band playing in a parade or celebrating in a pub... there might not be a finer thing.
Don't try to convince me otherwise.
It'll be a losing battle.
I say, just 'walk away Renee'.
Come to think of it---
That might be a killer song to hear on the pipes
Monday, March 25, 2013
Let us pray.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
She was the crazy lady who once drove up to my Mom's cousin Billy and Barbara's house in Cumberland in a car, got out, knocked on the front door with her hat and stogie and asked "Hey, is there any place around here where I might rent a horse?"
I'm still smiling thinking of that scene. This photograph and the memories came rushing back yesterday
The times we spent at Billy and Barbara's place on Blanchard Road with the kids were fun times, whether it was during the Christmas season or like summers pictured here. They had greenhouses and raised carnations that traveled the world. We attended a lovely service for Barbara yesterday that was filled with much reminiscing, and when we returned I spent an hour or so going through family albums remembering the woman with those sparkling eyes, and as her daughter Susan mentioned, had that amazing knack of making you the only one in a crowded room when she was in conversation with you.
Barbara, your white carnations are in a vase on our kitchen table this morning, reminding us of you.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
They say all 32 counties of Ireland were represented in the flags flying in the parade last week, but I wasn't counting. They, whoever they are, say you make your own luck in this world, but I have a hard time buying that. After the first two days of the 2013 Men's NCAA Basketball Tournament, I'm a measly 22-10. My South bracket has been just about blown apart. Marchin is not much better at 23-9. Now, I've won the pool at work a couple of times, taking home hundreds each time, but that was just pulling a team from a hat. Kansas in 2008 and Arkansas back in 1994 brought me some 'fun money' to splurge. Selecting all 62 teams and their results over the last three weeks in March has never been a chore I've had a lot of success at.
I guess you could say, I've been 'lucky at love' though.
NCAA Basketball? Not so much.
* ps. If you don't follow the MADNESS, just move along. There's nothing to see here.
*ps2. Go Hoosiers!
Friday, March 22, 2013
No Motorized Vehicles!
No Overnight Parking!
No Water Access!
No Skipping Stones!
Get the Picture?
... No Nothing!
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Don't look out the window in Maine. You won't be cheered by what you see. So let's keep it indoors.
Marchin made some home brew, for the first time, over the last month or so. It was a crafted lager. Last Sunday, after getting home from the parade, it was sampling time. I was impressed! Great taste. Fine color. Super head. Beautiful amber. For me, it was all there. He and a friend made it, and since they both have yellow dogs, they called this batch: Yellow Dog. Annie must be so proud!
We're approaching Maine Maple Sugar Sunday, and coming up with sweet maple sugar for pancakes, ice cream and such is quite a long process and entails lots of hard work. I think, if I had a choice, I'd take the micro brew road. I'd savor the end product a lot more. As a matter of fact, Marchin's going let me tag along next time. Maybe something for Memorial Day?
I might be saluting the flag with a bottle of Birdman's Best? You never know.
So, I'm saluting the arrival of spring with sips of Yellow Dog!
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
As a matter of fact... don't ask, or I might be Fallin' for Juicy too!
Monday, March 18, 2013
By the way, if you are always looking for something to celebrate, mark April 6, 2013 on your calendar.
It's National Tartan Day.
Might I be brave and wear a kilt to work?
You never know with me.
Sunday, March 17, 2013
Last night Elenka prepared our traditional St. Patrick's Day repast of corned beef and cabbage. It was delicious! Now, looking at my photo today in full disclosure, I prepared my earthenware myself. I'm really not into food placement on my dish. I just wanted the corned beef, cabbage, turnip, carrots and potatoes on my plate so I could 'get busy'. You'd think that the times I've gotten 'lost' on the food network watching the likes of: Paula Dean? (No!), the Barefoot Contessa? (No!), Rachael Ray(No! No! No!!), Giada De Laurentiis? (well, now you're talkin'). I can watch her for hours, and I have before. "Oh, you say she cooks too?" You'd think I'd know a little more about the importance of food placement on a plate, with the amount of time I've spent in fine restaurants and the 'time' I've spent watching these cooks. But alas, last evening it was all about enjoying this delicious meal.
I guess I better take a food course on the 'plate presentation' of my dinners.
I admit it. I've got some work to do.
Saturday, March 16, 2013
Monty Hall the classic huckster! Alive and well today, and as Elenka is fond of saying, "...making my brain itch!"
Please pass the crackers. I LOVE tomato soup!
Friday, March 15, 2013
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Just letting you know, I've hit rock bottom. I'm seeing pink elephants in the room! I'm ingesting a large spoonful of wicked truth serum this morning. I'm heading out soon to locate the nearest 12-step program near my town. "My name is Birdman. and I'm an addict." There it's out. My life starts over this morning. I'll be on my way back from Hell soon. I'm going stop hurting those that I love. I'm going to stop livin' the lie. There I've admitted it to friends and family. I know they've been worried about me. About a month ago my family tricked me into an intervention. It failed. I ran away. I'm ok; I said. They were right! I know that now. Addiction is evil.
Today is the first day of the rest of my life!
"My name is Birdman, and I'm addicted to... Downton Abbey."
There, I've said it. Are you happy? It's out, for all the world to know. I'm not embarrassed anymore. No more watching it on Sunday nights in a darkened room. I'll be with family with all the lights blazing at 9PM. I might even check out Hulu, and see if I might capture season 4, the advanced English version. I hear it's out there.
My sleep will be restful tonight.
I'm headed upstairs.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Those Old Mayonnaise Jars
My grandfather was a rock.
I used to think that everyone’s grandparents were. I know better now. Living has taught me that.
As I open the door and head downstairs, my nostrils are filled with the aroma of freshly cut pine. I make my way to the bottom and find my seat on the bottom stair, amid the the loud screaming sound of a circular saw spewing sawdust everywhere from its perch in the middle of the workshop. There are two more large saws and a lathe occupying space around the room. Above me in the ceiling, are many mayonnaise jars nailed to the ceiling holding assorted items of his trade. Eyeing the bottoms of the glass jars, he knew exactly which screws, nails or bolts he needed for the job. It was one of his little ways to organize his ‘underworld’. There were always pieces of unfinished furniture stacked against the back wall waiting to be completed. Off to the left, is his finishing bench, where he does his final varnishing, shellacking and painting. Most days he works with over an inch of cut sawdust at his feet. It smells so sweet to me. Hanging on the wall, his Eastern Tractor calendar helps to keep this workshop in monthly time. It is a world away from the world I know, but I sit fascinated by this master cabinetmaker and the the pieces of furniture he turns out
When not working on furniture or some toy for a loving grandchild, my grandfather, Albert could be found in his overstuffed, yellow, leather chair. He was a quiet man. He seemed to be able to occupy a conversation, quietly from aside in his flannel shirt and red suspenders. He had a full head of white hair well into his 80’s with glasses framing his face. Encircling his head seemed to be an endless swirl of pipe tobacco.
I was the oldest grandchild and was special to this man, at least in my world I was. He spoiled me rotten! A surprise car ride to the countryside, a quarter stuffed deep in my hollowed hand, away from Mom’s eyes, or just time spent in his lap keeping time to fiddling music were magic moments for me.
Once I asked, no begged him, to take me on my first fishing trip and to my delight he said, “Yes, let’s go!”
So off we went, in his black Chevy coupe, heading towards Portland. We stopped at water, that I know now as the Stroudwater Village dam, near the waterfall that is still there today. Grampa brought out his tackle box and spread feathery lures and dirty worms out across the grass. He showed me how to attach a worm to the sharp hook and all the other little nuances to the game of fishing. It was a fun afternoon, and we even sat back and enjoyed a picnic lunch packed by Nana. As the afternoon waned, I finally got my ‘bite’. As I reeled in my catch in, I was some excited. Sunfish? Perch? What would it be? However, disappointment soon ruled. My ‘fish’ broke the surface and was unbelievably just an old, black buckled boot, filled with disgusting slimy, yellow mud. Yuk! But it was a day! Etched in my memory forever. I’m lucky. I have a lot of these.
Whether it was sitting on the bottom steps of the workshop, staring at those mayonnaise jars in the ceiling, on a summer afternoon fishing trip, or just sitting back and taking in the aroma of his Prince Albert in a can, this man was a rock in my life.
If he only knew that I think of him almost everyday...
Maybe he does.
If he only knew that I think of him almost everyday...
Maybe he does.
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
It's quite strange, yet wondrous to know that calm scenes like this can turn chaotic, turbulent and oh so very destructive. Looking at the devastation lashed to the Jersey Shore by super storm Sandy, it's unsettling to know that placid and serene scenes of summer days at our beaches can turn suddenly to pure destruction. I was watching some video of what the storm of last week did to Plum Island south of us. The island community is reeling from the worst damage sustained in over 50 years. There is video of a seaside cottage being gobbled up by the water's fury. Over 15 homes along the water's edge are uninhabitable at this point. Point being, that a storm in these parts doesn't need to build up a huge reputation over days leading up to the event to shatter dreams.
Seaside cottages seem so dreamy in the pleasant days of summer, but do storms like this make you rethink your dreams of paradise?
Me? I never planned to live in Eden anyway.
Monday, March 11, 2013
The skits on SNL with Eddie Murphy got me smiling every time. Yes, it had its dark side and generous dose irreverent humor, but in my mind it was somebody getting back at the rubbery green guy, with that cutesy face. I remember when I first saw him 'slide' across my TV screen way back on a Saturday morning somewhere lost in time. I said, "What is this? Can't they even make him and Pokey 'walk'? Do they not know we can see them sliding away?" Gumby sliding to the rescue on his stupid one foot. Flash forward to 1997, and here we have the bizarro world of Stan Marsh, Kyle Broflovski, Eric Cartman Kenny McCornmick of South Park. I must admit the way the boys move is unsettling at times, but the surreal, dark humor set in current times, dealing with issues happening right here, right now is drop dead hilarious to me. Based on this, I guess I better give the ol' Gumby some slack or at least some rope to hang himself with.
After all, "He's Gumby, Dammit!"
Sunday, March 10, 2013
Saturday, March 9, 2013
You motoring around this weekend? I'm hanging close to home.
Friday, March 8, 2013
It's snowing again this morning. Not a lot, but enough. March is still a winter month in these parts.
Birthday wishes heading south this morning to my Sis in Lakeland, where there will be no snow with temps, probably in the low 80s.
Thursday, March 7, 2013
Winters growing up in Maine back then, you had to make a lot of your own fun.
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
"I'll take two cherry licorice sticks and a couple of the orange slices and, ah..."
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
"Day is done,
Kaputted the Sun,
From the balls, the bats and the bars,
All is well,
Things are swell
At the Tackiacki Club"
Happy Birthday wishing going out to my brother, Marchin, a charter member of the Skeleton Club of Stevens Avenue..
Monday, March 4, 2013
Sunday, March 3, 2013
Ya, I've had a few. Usually, I don't do a lot of advertising about it though. The steady laughter that ensues could really do a mind job on me. I'll add at this point that I'd never follow through with these, but I can dream. So here are a couple 'weak moments' that I'm revealing for the first time today. Every once in a while, after attending a car show, I get the idea in my head that, although it would be challenging and expensive, it might be loads of fun restoring a classic coupe in my garage. Maybe a dated Jag. Don't worry. This 'dream' fades fast, like the dust trail of roadster on dirt country road. Last weak, while visiting a fellow blogger http://skoogfarm.blogspot.com/, I got a peak at a new member of 'her family', Moon. She's a beauty. Could I get on with my life, lugging one of these trailers behind my truck? How about the feeding and care of a horse? Would the added work around the house overwhelm me? Rest assured, this feeling of ownership passes fast.
I love a good dream, AND I must say, I'm pretty skilled at it. Thank goodness though. These idle wandering pass fast!
btw, my counseling sessions begin tomorrow!
Saturday, March 2, 2013
It's Restaurant Week in the city. Guess what's in my near future plans are?