Saturday, July 25, 2009

Am I missing something?


Reading labels is a most educational activity but it seems to bring up more questions than it ever answers. Take the Pineapple Peach Mango drink sitting on my desk. It is a major brand and claims in large letters on the front to be: 100% JUICE. Turn the bottle on the side and read the contents. The first (and presumably greatest) ingredient is filtered water. Well, okay. The following items are juice concentrate but the second ingredient is APPLE juice concentrate and the third ingredient is GRAPE juice concentrate. I guess they missed those fruits when naming the product. It should perhaps have been Apple Grape Pineapple Mango Peach instead of Pineapple Peach Mango.


You'd also better dig out your calculator if you want to figure the nutrition facts. They are based upon an 8 fluid ounce serving. The bottle contains 15.2 fluid ounces which the label claims is "about 2" servings. About? I imagine the product once came in a 16 oz. bottle but like most of our incomes it has been downsized.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Silly or Stubborn?

Yes. I'm sitting in my house today, clad in shorts and shivering. Here it is, mid July, and the temperature outside might top 61 degrees. But it is summer and it SHOULD be warm, right? Coastal Oregon didn't get the message. I have friends emailing me from warmer climates complaining about the heat so I'm trying hard to pretend I appreciate the lack of it here.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Nostalgia & Aging

A good friend just sent me one of those ubiquitous things were better in the good old days emails. This one begins:


One evening a grandson was talking to his grandfather about current events.

The grandson asked his grandfather what he thought about the shootings at schools,

The computer age, and just things in general.


The Grandfather replied, 'Well, let me think a minute, I was born before:

' television

' penicillin

' polio shots

' frozen foods

' Xerox

' contact lenses

' Frisbees and

' the pill

There were no

' credit cards

' laser beams or

' ball-point pens


it goes on in similar fashion for many lines ruing draft dodgers, prices, and lack of morality, and it ends:


And we were the last generation to actually believe that a lady needed a husband to have a baby. No wonder people call us 'old and confused' and say there is a generation gap... And how old do you think I am?


Only 62 years old!


I found myself smiling, nodding, and then stopped. Here is the note I sent back to my friend:


As I'm in my 62nd year I can certainly understand this one. However, I seem to have forgotten what it was like before television, frozen food, credit cards, ball point pens, pantyhose, fast food, and instant coffee. And I can't recall $600 cars, 5 cent anything, or pre-rock and roll days.


I guess that is also a sign of getting old?


I seem to remember chips being poker and never saw a streetcar where I lived. My parents were divorced so I was a latchkey kid with a Mom only. Making out was... making out and had nothing whatsoever to do with school. Kids hung themselves in the barn, girls got preggers and society shunned them and the child and people were just as stupid as ever, ignoring the 10 commandments and good sense. I think I heard of draft riots before the civil war and we could have used gay rights way before my time...


Let's stay young enough to be realistically nostalgic!


Love, ~M.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ah, life in the USA...

In the Doctor segment on last night's local news it was stated that there are more lawyers in our country than doctors. I had to check it out. My brief research on the internet produced the following figures:

Lawyers (2007): 1,143,358 (according to the ABA)
Doctors (2004): 853, 187 (according to the AMA)

Draw your own conclusions.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"Mother's Don't Count"

When she said it my daughter meant that mothers are always there,
depended upon and expected to provide love and support. Now that she
is a mom she's learning the "mothers don't count" reality. It is a
great compliment in many ways. Mothers are pillars of strength,
lending confidence and assurance of worth when the world gets tough.
We can be relied upon and turned to. We encourage, reassure and sustain.

But "mothers don't count" comes with a pang that smacks the gut.
Along with trust comes being overlooked, ignored, and taken for
granted. Since mother's qualities are expected they are often
uncredited, under-appreciated. If mothers fail the sin is all the
greater.

My daughter can share "mothers don't count" with me and know that I
understand. She can look forward to the corollary: Children count extra.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Pollen allergies. Need I say more?


I will though, if I can manage not to sneeze explosively in mid-rant and blow the computer off my desk. The Pacific Northwet is a terrific place but probably wasn't an ideal choice of residence for someone with reactive sinuses and myriad pollen sensitivities. Allergy season begins in March and lasts through late October. The rest of the year, besides colds and flu, there are a variety of molds.


My sinuses are working overtime trying to cope and since I do my best to avoid constant use of OTC medications my life has become a cycle of sneezing attacks embellished with the usual nose/eye/ear/throat irritations. Last night was a prime example of what goes on. In bed at ten. Awake at midnight for first series of sneezes. Second series hits at one AM before I can return to sleep. Third arrives at four and cat is impelled across the room with initial KA-AH-AHHHH-CHOOOO! She wisely decides to sleep further from the action. Fourth attack happens as I read the morning email. The day will surely hold more.


My home in the country, surrounded by grass, fir trees, and heaven only knows what other sinus threats, is much loved. I couldn't afford to move even if I wanted to. So (sniff, wheeze) here I remain, tissue in hand, ready for another... Ah.....Ahhh... AHHHHHHCHOOOOO!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

July 8, 2009

Recently the 07/08/09 thing has been circulating via the internet and
will surely be on the nightly news - but I find the event of November
of 2011 to be more fun. I'll look forward to marking THAT one! In the
meantime - here is an excerpt from one of my daily emails on the theme:

A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

I've been alerted to an event that will take place later this week,
something that happens once and only once over the course of history.
Shortly after noon on July 8, comes the moment that can be called
12:34:56 7/8/9. To mark this momentous event, this week we'll feature
words that have three consecutive letters in order, something that
doesn't happen very often either (there are hundreds of everyday
words, but we are talking here about unusual and interesting words).

It's not exactly true that this sequence of time/date happens only
once. If you follow the day/month/year convention, you can observe
the same sequence next month, on August 7. And even though it appears
to be a rare occurrence, such interesting patterns aren't that
unusual. Consider these from the past:
01:23:45 6/7/89
12:34.56 7/8/90
01:02:03 04/05/06
In a couple of years we'll have 11:11:11 11/11/11. What other unusual
patterns can you think of that are in the near future?

(I highly recommend the A.W.A.D mailings! Subscribe at <wordsmith.org/
awad/subscribe.html> )

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

from Oxford in the Vacation


"Antiquity! thou wondrous charm, what art thou? that, being nothing, art every thing! When thou wert, thou wert not antiquity -- then thou wert nothing, but hadst a remoter antiquity, as thou called'st it, to look back to with blind veneration; thou thyself being to thyself flat, jejune, modern! What mystery lurks in this retroversion? or what half Januses are we, that cannot look forward with the same idolatry with which we for ever revert! The mighty future is as nothing, being every thing! the past is every thing, being nothing!"


Charles Lamb (Elia) 1775-1834