Monday, April 30, 2007

Go Meat!

I am not as ashamed as I should be to be completely amused by this ad:

Friday, April 27, 2007

Random quote and unrelated photo of the week

When curses are directed at other people, I absolutely know for a fact that they are complete hogwash. But I'm considerably more open-minded when it comes to curses directed at me.

Allison Silverman
Have Fun

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Friday, April 20, 2007

What a difference each day makes

Earlier this week I read about Hau's project to photograph an aspect of her family's life every day for a year. She encouraged her readers to participate, and almost without thinking I told her I wanted to do it. So I am. I've set up a flickr set, and put a little flickr rotating photo doohickey in my sidebar. I may also occasionally post my "365" photos to the blog.

After I set up the "365" set, I took a peek to see who else is posting using "365" as a label. Turns out lots of people are. Plus, Emily let me know about a 365 Kids group on flickr. Take a look, there is some good stuff out there.

I told Chris that I was going to do this, and he gave me a smile suggesting he recognized my desire to jump into this kind of project with great enthusiasm but maybe not too much thought. He knows I get excited and take on projects that end up having a life of their own. In this case, I have thought some about how I can realistically engage in a photo a day project. I make no promise that I will upload my daily photo to flickr every day. I can take a picture (or 30) every day, but I will need a little slack on the posting side. I will try to do it at least weekly.

As much as it makes me nervous to type this, I promise to post a photo even if I am not happy with any of the photos I take on a given day. This is going to be the hard part for me. I make no claims on being a great photographer, but I am vain. That aside, I will try to get past my discomfort to give you a daily glimpse into what is happening in my world.

Photo 1/365: Ada post-nap

So, who'll join me? It will be fun!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Random quote and unrelated photo of the week

In the long run, everything is a toaster.

Bruce Greenwald

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Ceci n'est pas une pipe

I usually shower before Chris leaves for work. Recently, Chris has had several early morning appointments and has had to leave at an unreasonable hour. This has left me with Ada and a need to wash my hair.

Ada is much better than she used to be about me showering on her watch (she used to cry the moment I stepped behind the shower curtain), but I still have to talk to her about what I am doing. "Look, I'm soaping my face! And now I'm rinsing the soap off."

After the shower, I got out to dry off. Ada has seen me without clothes before, and I am not concerned about her seeing me naked. (Well, except for her comments on my less than firm belly.) But today Ada regarded me with a new eye, and pointing at my pubic hair declared: "mustache". "Mustache?" I asked. Nodding, she emphatically repeated "Mustache!"

I immediately thought of this Magritte painting.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Open letter to Barak Obama

Re: How not to get me to give you money

Dear Senator Obama:

I am sure that as a busy senator and hopeful Democratic nominee for president you have no direct oversight of the organizations or individuals who phone bank for you. However, I thought you might like to know that my interaction with a caller who contacted me on your behalf has made me less likely to give you money in the future.

Last night a guy called to ask me to support your campaign. I told him that I would not donate until you had a real plan for universal health care in the U.S.A. (health care access is my thing, and since every other Democratic candidate seems to have a plan, it doesn't seem too much to ask.) The guy responded: "He TOTALLY has a plan!" and hung up. Maybe it's me, but insulting and hanging up on potential donors doesn't seem like a great way to get them feeling the wallet-opening love.

I am sure the call was not random, as I have given money to Democratic candidates in the past and am on various lists of left-leaning, bleeding heart tree-huggers. It seems like a bad policy for the people reaching out to me (and my credit card) to insult or annoy me. Maybe you know better, I mean, you did raise $25 million so far from 108,000 contributors. So maybe this "piss off the donor" thing is working for you. But just in case it isn't the thing for everyone (except me), I thought you might want to suggest your phone bank managers do a little training.


Nonlinear (I still won't contribute until you have a plan for universal health care) Girl

Edited to add: I sent a (slightly less churlish) note to the campaign via the website, and this morning got a form-email completely unrelated to what I'd told them. The email was super rah-rah, yay for us, and for you (assumed contributor to this presidential campaign juggernaut). I did learn that he actually had 104,000 (not 108,000) first quarter contributors, so at least I got a little fact-checking out of it.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Random quote and unrelated photo of the week (Susie Edition)

photo by my pal Susie

So now every time I see the ugly doll that Ada likes, I think of new my puss lyrics. Like this one:

My puss teach Harvard classes
Your puss emit greenhouse gasses


Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Thank goodness for the Stute Fish and Mother-Woman. If I had not seen the cool photos of their lovely egg decorations, I would not have remembered to download the pictures from our visit to eggland Ada's grandparents' house. But lucky for both you and me, I did see their pictures. After hosting a wonderful (and woefully unphotographed) late Passover seder on Saturday, the nonlinear family headed down the road to search out an array of real and plastic eggs. Sadly, most of the photos look something like this:

or this:

Yup, some of those dyed eggs leaked. And a blue and purple marbled egg would be really cool, if I hadn't peeled it intending to eat it. But I challenge you to hold up a blue and purple marbled egg and bite into it. I know the dye is food safe, but there is just something about neon blue that screams "DO NOT EAT!" So I didn't.

Despite this photograph, Ada had a great time hunting for eggs. She really enjoyed the hunt, and her grandparents did a perfect job of "hiding" eggs for her. Plus, the more I see of it, the more I understand what a racket this whole series of Christian holidays is. For easter Ada got real eggs (lovingly dyed by her grandparents, uncle and her beloved almost-cousin), plastic eggs filled with raisin packets, tiny oval playing cards, silly putty and play-doh, plus a soft white sheep (cryptically dubbed "goat"). Oh, and a basket. Plus a little chocolate and a full satisfying dinner of ham, ham and more ham. (For a girl who has been much pickier of late, she can really pack it in when she likes something.)

Lest you think that we spent all week peeling and discarding blue eggs, I share this as evidence that we also worked in the garden. And by "worked" I mean that Ada asked to see worms, which I dutifully dug up and presented to her so that she could touch them and then demand that I put them "home" (back in the dirt).

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Random quote and unrelated photo of the week

Dennis Mitsubishi, where every Friday is Fatah Friday, with free rubber swords for all the kiddies. Our prices are lower than the evildoers' every day - just ask the Pope.

As reported in Harpers Magazine (March 2007), from a preview radio advertisement for Dennis Mitsubishi in Columbus, Ohio leaked to the media in September 2006. (After the Council on American-Islamic Relations issued a protest, the ad was cancelled.)

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Treasuring Toddlers Tiptoeing through the Tulips

Welcome to my home among the tulips

I learned an important parenting lesson in a tulip field: when you are in a scenic, pastoral setting in which you want nothing more than to take an adorable photo of your child frolicking amid gorgeous flowers, your child will do everything in his or her power to make that impossible.

Lucky for me, I did not have to learn this the hard way. I took in this lesson several years ago, when my mother-in-law and I went to see the tulips in bloom at a local farm. We watched (and laughed) as parent after parent plopped down their child (or two or three) amid the tulips, crouched to take a picture, only to find the child not cooperating in capturing the moment. What inevitably ensued was some version of the parent yelling/commanding/cajoling: "look over here/smile at mommy/don't pull that/stop eating mud/no eating flowers/turn around/stop crying". It was a near universal experience for the parents and children attending the tulip festival that year. I appreciate those parents, because their pain was my lesson learned.

Monkey Boy makes a break for it

With this in mind, I had low expectations about what photos I could capture on my own trip to the farm with Ada, Monkey Boy and J (and their moms). Going into the excursion with such a limited goal made it more fun for me (if not for the others in my little party).

The intensity of her love for the little house can not be overstated.

The tulip farm has a child-friendly area, with a big hay bale hill (with tube slide), a sandbox, a fake cow to rope, Dutch wooden shoes to try on, a "cow" ride, and (Ada's favorite) a child-sized house. We spent much of our visit in and around this little house. It gave Ada so much pleasure to be there, enough to make up for the screams of outrage that accompanied my attempt to change her diaper before she floated away in her own pee. Made up for the complaints about the length of the car ride (about 40 minutes), and almost made up for the highly abbreviated nap that followed the outing.

Look, a picture with actual tulips in it!

Toddler unpredictability aside, the tulip farm was a fun outing. Even better if you can go during the week, when there are fewer crowds and the parking is free.