Monday, April 29, 2013


One year ago today, gone too soon.
 Here at her happiest, on Long Pond.
 Raise your glasses, m'dears.
 A time to toast and celebrate her life with us.
 Travel on, dear heart.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes today.

How old?

Well, I still feel like I have to grow into my cartoon.

Sunday, April 21, 2013


HAPPY BIRTHDAY, to my dear sister Sue, 63 today.

 Okay, I'm finally apologizing for sneaking into your bedroom with the record player while you were sleeping, and blasting "Wake Up, Little Susie." Oh, and for putting that bug in your peanut butter sandwich (just a teeny tiny ant, but I've lived with the guilt long enough). 

Love you, my dahling big sister Susie-Q.

Thursday, April 18, 2013


SNAPPED THESE IDLING BOVINES basking in a field this morning. I've always admired the imperturbability of these creatures. Want a dose of humility? Watch them watch you. They wouldn't be impressed if you were on fire. 

And, yes, the recumbent cow folklore is true; it was raining before I got home. Meanwhile, feel free to caption away.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


   I once was a caregiver for a very old woman, visiting her daily to help tend her basic needs. On my first visit with her, after a conversation where we'd been discussing the latest news, she said: "Well, I learned something new; I won't die today!"
            While helping her bathe, I'd informed her that it was too bad she wasn't born a giraffe, because they can use their 21-inch tongues to clean their own ears. Animal kingdom trivia that I’d picked up on Facebook, but a fun fact all the same, and enough to reaffirm her belief, she told me, that any day we laugh and learn, we live.
I added this to my holistic plan to help her maintain optimum health, and made it a point on subsequent visits to give her the skinny on something new and entertaining and with all the fun I could muster. We called it our “New Day” moment, and it became part of our routine.
"Marie, did you know that moths have no stomachs?"
            "Why, no!  Hooray!  Another day!"
            Or, responding in kind, she’d ask me: “Did you know that my father was a bootlegger?” 
            “No, I didn’t! Ah! Another day for me!”
            Now, your average scientist might say there’s no proof that a new tidbit of information administered daily, however tidbitty it might be, will insure longevity or guarantee another day on earth, but your average scientist is also responsible for fake hair-in-a-can and bacon-flavored dental floss, so I might be the more credible source here, and I do like thinking that I helped Marie make it past the century mark with good humor.
            Facebook is my favorite method of finding that new life-extending fun fact of the day. Yes, I confess to frequenting this online social network, communicating with “friends” I’ve never met, and sharing stories that might otherwise have gone on untold and unheard.
            Today, I learned in a post from friend Kenneth that goats in Morocco climb trees. Presto. Another day well-earned, and Marie would’ve loved that one.
            As the timeline of Facebook newsbits from my contacts scrolls by, I always look for the juiciest offerings: something I can use to impress the postmistress later that day and put me in solid with another secured 24 hours. 
            “Say, have you seen the tree-climbing goats of Morocco?” I’ll ask, handing her the slip for a package delivery.
            Obviously impressed with this, she’ll hand me my bundle and respond: “Sign here.” Poobah. Little does she know that I just gave her sunrise insurance. You’re welcome.
            I don’t hold with those who say that Facebook is the home of the humdrum --- another sign of these times of detachment and lazy embellishment of the real. Without it, today I wouldn’t have learned about gravity-defying goats in Northwestern Africa and stopped worrying about tomorrow.
            Let’s learn and live what’s happening right now:
            My friend Carole wished us all a good night, sending along big parenthetical virtual (((Hugs))) and promising to see us all in the morning. She must’ve seen the climbing goat article, too.
            Friend Chris has just posted a clip of a song that is driving her crazy because she just can’t get it out of her head. I’ve now learned that I can’t, either.
            Friend Heather wants to know why she’d ever consider getting a dog, when she has a cat who thinks it’s a dog, and posts a picture proving it. Not exactly a fact worthy of granting me another day, but I’ll put it in the bonus column of new minutiae as a backup.
            Friend Marcie has just announced that elephants are the only animals that can’t jump. This has unleashed a flurry of debate, with like-minded friends citing non-jumping hippos and rhinoceroses and sloths.
           Friend Barry informs us that due to his hard work through last fall and winter, he now has enough firewood to last all summer.
            Friend Alesa has posted a sign proclaiming: “If the food you eat can go bad, it’s good for you.  If it can’t go bad, it’s bad for you.”
            Friend Jackie reminds everyone that “It doesn’t matter how big and tough you are.  When a two-year old child hands you a toy phone, you answer it.”
            Recently, my seven-year old grandson Myles beat me at chess. Really, he did, even when his kind heart offered to let me cheat: “If you want to move your rook, I’ll look away and pretend I didn’t see it.”
            Now, on his grandmother’s Facebook page, I’ve just learned that yesterday he beat her at bowling.
            That new knowledge alone will see me through the rest of this day, but this morning I still wish that we had tongues long enough to clean our ears.
            You should be fine and live well until tomorrow, however, now knowing which animals do.
* * * * *
Senior Wire News Service syndicated humor columnist B. Elwin Sherman writes from Bethlehem, NH.  Copyright 2013, all rights reserved.  Used here with permission.
* * * * *   

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


DON'T KNOW HOW I CAN HAVE A CASE OF THESE after a 6000-mile cross-country roll-about, but I do.

 What's next? The Overland Crawl?

Sunday, April 7, 2013


Just back from a 6000-mile crosscountry trip, out to and back from Tucson.  Not something I planned to do as a road trip alone, but plans change, both willfully and by circumstance.  Two weeks total, with 10 of those days behind the wheel.  Loveless highway hotels, gas station sandwiches with better left unknown origins, 80-degree fluctuation in temperature from start to middle to finish, and always the land ahead unfolding, flattening, rising, with horizons and mirages indistinguishable after 600-mile plus days.  Sometimes, my mind's eye was the virtual reality, sometimes the landscape.  Some roads hummed, some whined, some bassooned, some were silent as glass.

Accents and hospitalities and accommodations changed like clouds, and I passed through America's metropoli and rural Brobdingnagians like a bullet in freeze-frame.

To not know what comes next, to never feel static, to always be in the grip of wonder, anxiety, fear and curiosity.

I highly recommend it.