June 10 is National Iced Tea Day

Our air conditioner is dying a slow and painful death.  The company can not replace it until Tuesday, June 16.  Meanwhile, we are going old school

  • fans
  • iced tea

It does make me wonder how people managed in the days before electricity when they also wore a lot more clothes than we do today.

From National Today.Com  Tea has been around forever, but iced tea didn’t burst onto the scene and win over America’s hearts and minds until 1904. In that year, visitors to the St. Louis World’s Fair were greeted by exceedingly hot weather. Tea plantation owner and merchant Richard Blechynden, who was present at the fair, took advantage of the situation by selling chilled tea drinks (instead of hot tea) as a cold refreshment. The rest is history. On June 10, we fill our glasses with iced tea (sweetened or unsweetened—that’s your call) and celebrate National Iced Tea Day.

On hot days, one of my favorite things to make is sun tea.

According to  Simple Recipes

Put 4 to 8 tea bags into a clean 2 quart or gallon glass container (4 teabags for a 2 quart container, 8 tea bags for a gallon container). Fill with water and cap. Place outside where the sunlight can strike the container for about 3 to 5 hours. Move the container if necessary to keep it in the sun. When the tea has reached its desired strength, remove from sun and put it in the refrigerator. You may or may not want to remove the tea bags at this point. I usually don’t.

I’ve found that the tea can brew in the shade if the temperature is warm enough. Although I like to make Tazo’s Green Ginger Tea, any type of tea bags will work.

 

Library Days to Celebrate in April

school library monthApril is School Library Month. School Library Month is the American Association of School Librarians’ celebration of school librarians and school libraries. Every April school librarians are encouraged to host activities to help their school and local community celebrate the essential role that strong school libraries play in transforming learning.

School closures have made celebrating School Library Month a virtual experience.  Things that school librarians may have been doing include:

  • Helping teachers prepare syllabi
  • Providing as many online resources as possible
  • Networking with public libraries to share resources and inform their students on what is available to them
  • Hosting  a virtual story hour or providing a recommended reading list
  • Encouraging their students to use the library when school resumes

April is also National Poetry Month.  I’ve been writing and publishing a poem a day–sowriting-in-greece far I’ve got poems for the first half of the month.  How can you celebrate National Poetry Month?

April 10 was  National Sibling Day.  Some siblings have co-written books; others have written books independently.  Famous writing siblings include the Bronte sisters and Jacob and Wilhlem Grimm  of Grimm’s Fairy Tails.  Pauline Esther Friedman and Esther Pauline Friedman (also known as Dear Abby and Ann Landers) were famous identical twins and advice columnists.

250px-The_Brontë_Sisters_by_Patrick_Branwell_Brontë_restored
Bronte sisters as painted by their brother

National Library Week

is April 19-25.
The theme for National Library Week (NLW) 2020, “Find your place at the library,” was chosen before the emergence of the global pandemic. To acknowledge our altered landscape, ALA flipped the script a bit on the theme. “Find the library at your place” highlights how libraries are offering virtual services and digital content their communities need now more than ever.

national library workers dayNational Library Workers Day is April 21.

National Library Workers Day was first celebrated in 2004.  It was started as a way to raise support for better benefits and salaries at a time when they had been stagnant for years. National Library Workers Day Continues to promote increased benefits and wages for the services provided by library workers every day.

The month ends with Preservation Week, April 28-May 2.
preservation week 2020

Do you know about the Library of Congress’s Veteran’s History Project?

The Veterans History Project of the American Folklife Center collects, preserves, and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war veterans so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war.

When I volunteered at the University City Branch of the San Diego Public Library, I got to interview several people for the Veteran’s History Project. My practice interview was with my own husband. I also got to interview veterans from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and cold war veterans. It was a fascinating experience.

Live in the time of Coronavirus, Pt 7–I’ll Drink to That

“U.S. sales of alcoholic beverages were up 55 percent in the week ending March 21, according to Nielsen. Spirits sales were up 75 percent in the same period, wine sales were up 66 percent, beer sales up 42 percent,” reports Cyril Penn on WineBusiness.com. “What’s more, Nielsen said online sales of beer wine and spirits were up 243 percent versus the same week the year before.”

In Virginia, libraries, schools/universities, courts, and the DMV are all closed indefinitely. However, the states’ Alcohol Beverage Control  (ABC) stores are considered essential along with grocery stores,  pharmacies, laundries and dry cleaners, gas stations, etc.  I guess the state has to make money somehow.

Virginia, a former blue law state, has loosened the requirements on who can offer take-out liquor–breweries can now offer deliveries, many wineries are offering free shipping, and restaurants can sell their bottles of wine to go at discounted prices.

One the other hand, many distilleries have switched from making spirits to hand sanitizers.

Corona Virus--liquor shores

Corona Virus-Possible Drinking Problem

Is your wine cellar or beer stash still intact?  What is your favorite tipple during the pandemic

Corona Virus--Alcohol (2)

 

Twitter Power

All the little birds on Jaybird on loved to hear the robin go tweet tweet tweet.--“Rockin’ Robin” by Bobby Day

TwitterTwitter or Tweets have come a long way since this song was released by Bobby Day as a single in 1958.

According to Lifewire, Twitter is used for

  1. Connecting people
  2. Sharing Information in Real-Time
  3. Marketing in business
  4. Educational tool

It can also be used to share Misinformation in Real-Time.

From Wikipedia–Twitter diplomacy, also “Twiplomacy” or “hashtag diplomacy“, is the use of social network and microblogging website, Twitter, by heads of state, leaders of intergovernmental organizations (IGOs), and their diplomats to conduct diplomatic outreach and public diplomacy

Donald Trump may not have been the first person to use twiplomacy, but he has become the poster child for its use.

Accidental AdmiralHowever, in 2011, Admiral James Stravitis, then the supreme allied commander at NATO, caused a “diplomatic stir by sending out a tweet to the world explaining what I would recommend to the twenty-eight ambassadors later that day.  News organizations picked it up and soon the story of ‘the first war whose end was announced on Twitter’ was making the rounds.”  from The Accidental Admiral by James Stravridis,  USN (Ret.) ( Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2014), p. ix

On March 21, 2016, Brian Mastrioni at CBS News wished Twitter a Happy 10th Birthday by writing  “Tweet-worthy Milestones from Twitter’s First 10 Years.

Gayle Osterberg wrote on December 26, 2017 “In 2010, the Library of Congress announced an exciting and groundbreaking acquisition—a gift from Twitter of the entire archive of public tweet text beginning with the first tweets of 2006 through 2010, and continuing with all public tweet text going forward. The Library took this step for the same reason it collects other materials – to acquire and preserve a record of knowledge and creativity for Congress and the American people. The initiative was bold and celebrated among research communities.”

That changed to:

The Library now has a secure collection of tweet text, documenting the first 12 years (2006-2017) of this dynamic communications channel—its emergence, its applications and its evolution.

Today, we announce a change in collections practice for Twitter. Effective Jan. 1, 2018, the Library will acquire tweets on a selective basis—similar to our collections of web sites.

Twitter had outgrown even the Library of Congress’s ability to archive its public totality.

March 14 is Pi Day

The number π is a mathematical constant. Originally defined as the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, it now has various equivalent definitions and appears in many formulas in all areas of mathematics and physics. It is approximately equal to 3.14159.  From Wikipedia

Pi signThe earliest known official, or large-scale celebration of Pi Day, was organized by Larry Shaw in 1988 at the San Francisco Exploratorium. The Exploratorium continues to hold Pi Day celebrations.

HOW TO OBSERVE

Our research has found that there are different ways that people celebrate National Pi Day.  Some of the celebrations include:

  • Eating a slice of pie
  • Pie eating contests
  • Discussing the significance of the number π
  • More recently watching Life of Pi
  • Finding 3.14 deals in as many version of π as possible.  For example
    • Half.com  is offering 95 % off the paperback of The Life of Pi.
    • Think pizza Pi as much as dessert kind of deals on this day!
    • Get punny Geeky Greek Pi inspired t-shirts deals.
    • Find these and more at www.GoBankingRates.com
    • Visit the National Day Calendar Classroom for a National Pi Day lesson.

March 14 is celebrated for other reasons too:

  • Steak and Blowjob Day (sometimes Steak & BJ Day or Steak and Knobber Day) is a satirical holiday created in the United States as a male response to Valentine’s Day and celebrated a month later, on March 14.
  • On March 14, 1964, a jury in Dallas found Jack Ruby guilty of murdering Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President John F. Kennedy, and sentenced him to death. (Both the conviction and death sentence were overturned, but Ruby died before he could be retried.)
  • In the St . Vincent  and the Grenadines is it National Heroes Day, which is a public holiday.
  • It ‘s National Potato Chip Day so enjoy a bag without feeling guilty.
  • National Write Your Story Day- You may think to yourself, “There’s nothing in my life to tell.” It will surprise you once you put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard and the words start filling the pages. Words have a way of triggering memories.
  • NationalLearn about Butterflies Day
    • There are more than 20,000 types of butterflies worldwide.
    • Their wing spans can range from 1/2 inch to 11 inches.
    • Butterflies in their adult stage can live from a week to nearly a year, depending on the species.
    • Many butterflies migrate over long distances.  Particularly famous migrations are those of the Monarch butterfly from Mexico to the northern USA and southern Canada, a distance of about 2500 to 3000 miles.

      . –

FUN FACT: https://www.piday.org/find-birthday-in-pi/

If you use the first date of 1 Jan 2019 the answer is

Pi birthday results

The Hundred Little Things

I came across this helpful and heartfelt blogpost that aptly illustrates that it is the hundred little things that add up to real love and change. Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy sharing it with you.

A Teacher's Reflections

I have a handwritten list of posts I want to write, things that are important.  There is one that has been screaming at me for a long time, with yellow highlighter and a post-it note: “The Hundred Little Things.”  It is the source of all that’s important, why everything we do is meaningful, whether we know it or not.  It is the most important thing I learned in teaching.  Oh boy, did I learn this.

A past parent visited me at school this week.  Her boys are beyond college and doing well.  She wanted to stop by, give me a Peter Rabbit cookie jar, and say thank you.  Like the student alumni who stop by and cannot pinpoint what it is they remember, she was the same way.  And I know why.  It’s the hundred little things.

Do I remember everything I did with Adam?  No.  Does his Mom?  No. …

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Own the Behavior, Not the Organization

Property Laws of a ToddlerWhy do certain members fill like they own the group they have joined?

I belong to several groups.  The three that I’m most involved in are a read and critique group (member for 3 years), a Celtic discussion group (3 years) and a professional library association (30 years).   AARP eligible members compose the first two groups.  The library group is about half senior citizens and half librarians too young to be retirement eligible.

One or more members (both male and female)  expect the rest of us to follow wherever they lead.  Some of them do a better job of paying lip service to other people’s ideas, but it’s a pretense since they assume their ideas are so much better.

Read and Critique Group — Some of the members have actually taken their marbles and left the group entirely.  The group was in transition and they rightly felt that their ideas and experience would benefit the group.  When all of their ideas were not welcomed with open arms, they left in various fits of pique.  (This may explain  why they appear to have lost a few marbles in the process-pun intended).

Celtic Discussion Group — Two leaders and several participants.  One of the leaders offers recommendations and then promptly assumes consensus.  During the course of each discussion, she’ll take us on a tangent of her choosing.  Often, we lack the time to get back to the chapter we were supposed to be discussing.

Library Group –  One person has carried the organization for several years.  She is its most successful fundraiser and has repeatedly ‘lent’ the group thousands of dollars by putting a variety of conference-related expenses on her credit card until she can be reimbursed by the organization.  She is our corporate memory and is, fortunately, a benign despot.  She is also the only one of the examples given who acknowledges her behavior.

Why do some people feel that like ‘their’ organization is ‘theirs?  These are all organizations that are run by volunteers.  Except for the Celtic Discussion group which is too small to have a board,  the groups have a board and committees.  There is as least one King or Queen Bee who feels that the group should be run in their own image whether they are on the board or heading a committee.  Except for the lady from the library group, they would be astonished if confronted with with how others view their organizational usurpation.

Do you belong to a volunteer group that is OWNED by one or more members, despite the fact that the group is open to any interested or dues-paying member? What do you think about these self-appointed Queen or King Bees?

 

 

Five Gym-Related Signs You May Be a Geezer or Geezerette

  1. elder fitnessYou argue with your body that it really can do that 30 minutes on the reclining bike.  Your leg begins to mutter about 10 minutes in and by 20 minutes, it complains loudly that the effort is too much (even though you have not increased the resistance past level 1.)  It was able to do up to level 4 two days ago and it has not been injured or abused. You ignore the leg cramp and sigh heavily when the clock shows that 30 minutes have trickled away.
  2. Your body does not want to get down on the floor for stretches (and you don’t woman kneelingwant to let gravity help you get down there more swiftly.) You grab the exercise mat and lie it on the floor, staring at it resentfully.  You know all of the grumbling parts will feel better once they are stretched, but they show no interest in making that happen.  So you bend at the waist (fortunately the hamstrings still cooperate, even if the knees are sulky), touch the floor and walk them forward until you can drop your knees to the mat.  It ain’t purty, but it serves a need.
  3. A new body part joins in the argument about which part is aching the most.  Usually, it’s the knees that complain, but today the right hip feels entitled to join in.  Nothing makes it happy.  Talk about a whiner.
  4. Any piece of equipment in a pinch.  Once the stretches, leg lifts, and the world’sGlute Ham machine. briefest plank position hold have been accomplished, you have to stand back up.  Fortunately, you are next to the Glute Ham developer so it allows you to pull/push yourself up from a kneeling position.

5.  Doing the actual exercises is the easy part.  Getting situated in the machine and adjusting the seat and weight are the hard parts.  Getting out is almost as difficult as getting in.

hip abductor machine
This is one of the most difficult to navigate getting in and out.

Is it better to be unheard or not being listened to?

Monkey scratching his head
Say What?

Ladies, this question is for you.  Gentlemen, you are invited to give an alibi or explanation as you feel so inclined.

Sometimes when I speak to my husband, he practices selective deafness where he does not acknowledge that anything has been said.   At other times, he grunts in affirmation implying that something has been said, but is not worth listening to.

Do you think it is it less frustrating to be unheard (where whatever you say  is totally ignored) or not be listened to (where you say something but it is deemed  unworthy of attention)?

 

January 26 is National Spouses Day

National Spouses Day:

is an unofficial holiday which encourages couples to celebrate each other on this day. On this day, people are supposed to take time out of their busy schedule to show just how important their spouse is to them. After all, the love that isn’t tended is most likely the one that doesn’t thrive. This holiday shouldn’t be confused with Military Spouses Day – a holiday which falls on May 12th.


Interesting Facts About Marriage

  • The average married couple has sex once a week
  • 20% of married couples have a sex-less marriage
  • It’s legal to marry someone who is dead in France
  • Over 300 couples marry in Las Vegas every single day
  • The 3rd year of marriage is usually the happiest for most couples
  • Every hour, there are a 100 divorces in the United States
  • Interracial marriage was banned in the U.S up until 1967  (Ironcially, it was a couple called Loving that brought this to an end. Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1, was a landmark decision of the U.S. Supreme Court that struck down laws banning interracial marriage as violations of the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution)
  • Gamophobia is the fear of commitment
  • Wedding rings go back to Ancient Egypt

Marriage as handcuffs

How are you going to celebrate?

Musings

Monkey scratching his head
Say What?

Has the bully pulpit become more bully than pulpit?

What is it about a subpoena that frightens the memory away?  Do they drink the fifth before they plead it?

Is Santa Claus a toy sleigher?

A woman says something.  One to three minutes later it percolates through a man’s brain and he utters the same words as an original  thought.  The other men in the group hail it as significant.  Why?

You hear something on the news that you agree with–Benghazi attack, withholding funds for Ukraine to mention two from the recent past.  You say you are not a conspiracy theorist type of person–is it because you agree with whichever side is being discussed? Do you think that the other side is actually part of a conspiracy theory?

“I may not know where I’m at but I know where I’m going.”  From an old woman confused about Charlotte, NC, and Charlottesville, VA.

A mother was having a discussion with her teenage daughter and had to eat a bite of her daughter’s bagel before saying anything. ” You don’t like nothing that they serve?

If you’re drifting, someone else is doing the thinking.  Congresswoman Love

Trump is a British slang word for fart. It is derived from the noun ‘trump’ which is a blast from a trumpet.
 

Reblog: Southern Comfort–Soups, Stews, and Grits

January is Soup Month.  Since I love soups and do not have any homemade recipes to share, I thought I would share Camilla’s Cottage blog on the topic.  The recipes look warming and delicious on a chilly, grey January Saturday when Winter has decided to make a comeback after a two week hiatus.

To read this tasty blog posting click  here

Bold Rock--Ciders, Potatoe-Sausage Soup, Smoked Turkey Panini with Chips, Side Salad
Picture is from Soup and a Sandwich at Bold Rock Cidery in Nellysford and not from Camilla’s Cottage  blog.

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Saving a Local Bookstore

Cynthia Reyes’ blogpost about a British bookstore is heartwarming and how sometimes twitterstorms can be a good thing.

Cynthia Reyes

If you love books, and value bookstores, you’ll want to read this remarkable story. It started with a single tweet:
Petersfield Bookshop@The_PBS

…Tumbleweed…

Not a single book sold today…

£0.00…

We think think this maybe the first time ever…

We know its miserable out but if you’d like to help us out please find our Abebooks offering below, all at 25% off at the moment….

View image on Twitter
Read the story here:

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From Being the Goat to Being the G.O.A.T

hero or goat

Charlie Brown may not have been the original goat, but he came to personify it.

Goat gaggle--hoping to handoutsThis type of Goat has even made it into Survivor lexicology.

During every season of Survivor, there will come the point when players and fans begin discussing which of the remaining players are “goats.” The goat refers to a player with a highly unlikely chance of winning; whom if taken to the Final Tribal Council should be easily beatable due to the way they played the game or treated the members of the jury. It has become such a repeated term that it is now cemented in the lexicon of Survivor;

How did Goat become G.O.A.T.?

According to GOAT| Know Your Meme:
G.O.A.T, is an acronym for the expression “greatest of all time,” which is commonly used in sports when referring to players who are widely considered the most talented. Online, It is often used on sites like reddit and 4chan when referring to someone who is believed to be the best at a certain skill.

On September 12th, 2000, rapper LL Cool J released his eighth studio album G.O.A.T. (Greatest Of All Time). The album was a commercial success, reaching the number one position on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart.[1]

Ken Jenning is Jeopardy’s GOAT.

Ken Jennings Jeopardy GOAT

Who is that Dithery Lady of a Certain Age?

In the parking lot of the local Kroger grocery store, a woman of a certain age pushed her cart up and down the parking lot rows. She kept pointing her key fob in different directions as if trying to echo-locate her car.  The car did not return a confirming beep.

After walking down one row and up another, she paused to see if her car might be in a different row.  Even though she was not in the middle of the road, she unknowingly paused in front of a car, blocking its ability to drive forward.

She became aware of the frustrated driver within a few seconds, waved at the lady behind the wheel and pushed her cart forward.  The driver revved her engine to show her annoyance.

Was I the cart pusher or the frustrated drive?  Neither is an admirable person.

Poem: Slavery by any other name is still Slavery

This is a powerful poem about how many Westerners (both Europeans and Americans) view Asian women.  I have heard many men who were on West Pac cruises or stationed in Korea or Japan or Vietnam or the Philippines use some of these terms and have read them in many novels.   We are monumentally blind to the cruelty we inflict in the name of humor. Poem: Slavery by any other name is still Slavery

January 10–Today is National Peculiar People Day

We are all weird to somebody.  I had a good friend in college whose mother would refer to her as odd, her sister as strange and her brother as different (if I remember correctly).  I used to ask her which one she was.

According to https://happydays365.org/peculiar-people-day/peculiar-people-day-january-10/

The inventor or creator of Peculiar People Day is still unknown. The Peculiar People were founded in 1838 by John Banyard in Rochford, Essex. John Banyard is a farm worker’s son born in 1800. The Peculiar People is derived from the phrase “Chosen People” which taken from the Deuteronomy Book. Conflict of the ideas you might think, it is the fact that the ordinary individuals haven’t set the world in motion. Always peculiar peoples made the sweeping change, they always refuse the things as they are, they create new ideas and overturn the ideas which are thousands of years old.

They offer recommendations on how to celebrate today (besides being yourself.)

Celebrating Peculiar People Day is quite easy and very simple. At morning, spend some time in the salon and have your hair dyed pink, yellow or blue. You can visit the nearby mall and take pictures with the peoples who looks unusual. Cook some exotic food, but it should be an eatable food for the family. For more fun, dress up your pet with some wigs and have a walk with them in the nearby park. Post pictures and share your thoughts on social media by using the hashtag #PeculiarPeopleDay.

walking the dog

C-O-L-D Indoor Bathrooms in Cold-ifornia

As  a setter and not a pointer, four things govern the desirability of a public restroom:

  1. Cleanliness–probably the most important
  2.  Temperature–toilet seats can be chilly
  3.  Toilet paper availability–sometimes drip dry is not an option
  4.  Toilet seats–one public rest  area just off I-5 near Oceanside felt  this was an unnecessary luxury, which required hovering or perching on the rim

On a recent trip to the Monterey-Big Sur area, every single public restroom was indoors, sparkling clean and cold enough to remind me of the old cartoon where someone has to break frozen dogs off of fire hydrants.

From the new women’s restroom at the Central California Veterans Cemetery on what used to be Ft. Ord to the ladies’ room at the Hyatt Carmel Highlands Inn in Carmel Highlands, the restrooms were universally chilly.  Ladies rooms at the Ventana Inn (Big Sur), Rocky Point Restaurant (Big Sur), Sand Bar and Grill (Monterey). Mission Ranch Restaurant  (Carmel), From Scratch Restaurant (Carmel), Phoenix Shop (Big Sur) were all clean but chilly.  Does the lack of heat make the ladies’ room easier to keep fresh smelling?

Murals inside the Ladies Room at the Phoenix Shop at Nepenthe in Big Sur,CA

 

Bathroom Signs V

My shipmate Bonnie and her husband were on a tour of Italy, Castellina in Chianti – a small town of 2800 inhabitants.  She took this picture of the men and women’s restroom signs in an Italian coffee shop.Bathroom--Italian coffee shop

From Facebook–a golden oldie  Unisex

Bathroom-Men Left Women Right

Bathrooms at  Element  Restaurant in Front Royal, Virginia

Sign inside the  women’s restroom at Moe’s Barbeque in Charlottesville, VA

Bathroom-Moe's Barbeque.jpg

Bathrooms at Burton Grill at Stonefield in Charlottesville, VA,

Tito’s Diner, Fredericksburg, VA

Bathroom sign at Ikea at Potomac Mills in Woodbridge, VA.  Picture provided by my friend and shipmate, Wendy Hill.

Bathroom--Ikea.jpg

Water Closet sign at the Big Sur Coastal Gallery, Big Sur, CA
Bathroom--Water Closet sign at the Big Sur Coastal Gallery, Big Sur, CA