Monday, December 31, 2007


Auld Lang Syne

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days o' auld lang syne

For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stoup !
And surely I’ll be mine !
And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.


We twa hae run about the braes,
and pou’d the gowans fine ;
But we’ve wander’d mony a weary fit,
sin’ auld lang syne.


We twa hae paidl’d in the burn,
frae morning sun till dine ;
But seas between us braid hae roar’d
sin’ auld lang syne.


And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere !
And gies a hand o’ thine !
And we’ll tak a right gude-willie-waught,
for auld lang syne.


I did a bit of "reacquainting" this past year, and am getting to see another old "acquaintance" soon...

happy new year!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

On religion

I suppose, when push comes to shove, I have to say that I would most closely fall under the guise of agnostic theism... and it sorta pisses me off.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

happy birthday

happy birthday, originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

This was the family celebration.
A cupcake with laughing and singing and the all favorite candle blowing.
Party is on due date... or there abouts.


I typically do not remember my dreams, perhaps some snippets, but never the whole thing. And rarely do I wake up with a profound feeling after having had one.
I have been remembering more of my dreams lately. Like one of past co-workers showing up at work this week.

But my dream last night was rather profound, at least to me. The dream was about things that are absent of the presence of God, but in the sense of what would be subject to or capable of having a higher power within. In it a Christian friend said "I just can't read the bible without having my Physics 1.2.6 textbook with me". Not sure why that was there other than because I often marvel at how I see science as a profound way to understand the non denominational concept of God. In my dream, there was a general thought about what, on our planet, is subject to the oversight and/or management of God; 1) humans: most definitely, 2) animals: some assent, 3) plants: perhaps, 4) rocks: probably not (though I think I was trying to understand this most in the dream as it seemed to drag on as a discussion, and 5) lava; probably not.
It seemed interesting that there was not a complete consensus about what was subject to God.

Now, it perhaps should be said that it was not a discussion about what God owns or manages, but of what is subject to God, with a smidgen of what is held accountable and therefore might have soul or a conscience... does that make sense?

I think this dream was because I was reading about Moral Relativism in contrast to Moral Objectivism before falling asleep. So, I was plagued with thoughts on what, as I think I believe, would be a moral absolute and feel asleep thinking back on that which I could remember as common principles in the Bible's Ten Commandments, the Islamic Sharia, the Five Precepts of Buddha, and the Talmud's Mosaic code (these last three I have only a passing knowledge of so I may be completely erroneous in them and their ideas).

While intriguing, I woke up feeling profoundly grateful that modern medicine helped bring my child into the world three years ago today, which has nothing to do with my dream but I wanted to work it in somewhere and I am not sure where other than to declare the Squink is growing up too fast!


Monday, December 17, 2007

Gingerbread house (and trains) party

This weekend I had some friends over for a gingerbread decorating party. I used pre-made houses and I made up a train template based on this one and I also made my own gingerbread dough for said trains and such so that we could have a village with access to imports, because one can't have a village that doesn't have any form of mass transit so that the latest in ginger-wear would be available to our gingerbread men and women. That's me, a thoroughly modern Millie of the made up ginger world and with ginger colored glasses to boot).

Okay, to be perfectly honest, it was supposed to be a Thomas the Train and station house thing but, as with all great times and things, it evolved into this fabulous village with mass transit.

In an attempt to illustrate how wonderful my friends and their children were I had to use my house replica table (don't ask as it involves my admitting to a certain laziness in not taking the doll house back to the basement and I actually kinda sorta like having a doll house that isn't really a doll house in my living room, and it was inspiration, yeah that is it, it was inspiration).

I did this whole party thing because some of my most favorite food memories of Christmas and my mother are of her doing similar activities for my brother and me (as well as our friends), it was always a hit, it became one of those great fabulous reminders of those happy days of my youth, where "issues" involved who got to get the cool purple gum drop or if we had red vines for cool gingerbread house fashions.

To me, this experience was about friends and family, about laughing and having a good time. So, that is what I made it. I invited some wonderful women I was able reconnect with after my recent 20 year High School reunion. They brought their families we ate Mac & cheese and ordered some fabulous pizza and got down to it.

So, I guess I have YumSugar to thank for the inspiration in issuing the Gingerbread House Challenge.

I am so thrilled that they issued the challenge! I am under the impression (hopefully not a delusion; though I guess if the ends justify the means, it is all OK) that this is often mentioned as a fond memory among some folks and in our crazy hurried days it was a chance to reconnect with those times. I think I may have started an annual tradition in our household!

So let us get back to the whole experience... for the sake of retaining that which I learned I am going to include my recipes... it is such a mish-mosh of different ones I found on the net that I can't pinpoint the one that was the primary inspiration, though the link to the train template may be the basis for the most of what I made and did.

In the end I used a great recipe that lends itself to varied textures depending on how it is rolled and baked. I tried two different formats. The first being just putting my chilled dough straight into the baking sheet and rolling out in there and cutting/tracing my pattern into itbaking it all together and cutting it after it was baked (this is how my mom did it) and the other way was to cut OUT the pieces and place them on the baking sheet separately, this is how I ended up doing it (the other way made the "walls" too thick and I would have run out of dough before I had made enough trains).

My recipe for gingerbread was:
6 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1 1/3 cup molasses
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl.

2. In another large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and egg, add the molasses and beat until well mixed, then add the vanilla extract.

3. Mix in the dry ingredients into the creamed butter and sugar a bit at a time.

4. Divide the dough in half. Place each piece in a large ziploc bag and refrigerate overnight.

To Bake:
Heat the oven to 350° and either bake the filled baking sheet for about 20 minutes or the cut out pieces for about 15.

The Royal Icing:

I used Wilton's recipe because I was using their meringue powder.

I also made crazy awesome buttercream for this project, that recipe was as follows:

4 pounds confectioners sugar
1 pound butter
1/3 to 2/3 cup Half and Half

(see crazy awesome as in clogged arteries galore, but man it was yummy as you can see from my picture of Squink enjoying it straight out of the decorating bag).

1. Cream the butter and add 1 cup of confectioners sugar (with blender on LOW) and add a drizzle of the half and half... continue to do so until blended to the consistency you like.

I had a great time, family and friends that were unable to make it have stated they want to come next year (I think I lured them in with that crazy awesome buttercream).

Thanks YumSugar!

Friday, December 14, 2007

sometimes the kids these days amaze me

Here is a very good example:

This little boy who is not quite entering his third year...
up close

created this...
joes computer art

I stepped away from my computer to bake the gingerbread that I had been looking at on-line and when I came back to figure out the cooking time, I found this.
This meant that Squink managed to open up a drawing program, then he figured out how to "draw", AND change the colors.

My son is an artistic genius!

And yes, I printed it and it is on my fridge!


Sunday, December 02, 2007


It is with a certain kind of excitement that I find myself looking forward to this last year of my 30's. Life truly does get better with age.

Doesn't it?


Saturday, December 01, 2007

this just makes me so sad!

As a mother this is unimaginable, though because of my life experiences it is something that I know is a part of the darker side of life (especially in Latin America). She is so lucky to still be alive, but 8 years away from her children... I am not so sure if lucky is the right word.

Go here.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Wonder-twin powers, activate!

Recently, I was asked which of the following superpowers would I choose (assuming I could have only one) and why?

The ability to fly or
The ability to be invisible.

Before I answer, what would your answer be and why?

I will tell you that I was an odd one out in the group we had this discussion, though I think my reasoning was no less valid than the others I was with.

Edited, because it did not come out right when I wrote it down. I am all too often like a p&s camera when it comes to this blog, I type and post.


Sunday, November 18, 2007

Becci tagged me for the "7 random and/or weird facts" about me meme.

I have been trying to figure out what to say since she tagged me... I have no idea, I pretty much spilled most of it in my 100 things about me list.

The rules:
- Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself.
- Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
- Let each person know that they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

So here are seven more:
  1. I make up songs all the time and sing them out loud... yes, in public. I can't sing well.
  2. I am completely unable to follow a recipe. This drives my husband nuts because of two reasons: 1) you can never replicate the recipe 2) it is just what one is supposed to do. I still don't buy it. If he felt more adventurous, I might cook more often.
  3. I am resolving numbers 51 through 56 and 65, it is a process that is difficult but nice.
  4. I recently cut almost two feet of hair off my head... it now goes to my shoulders and I donated the cuttings.
  5. I love autumn, though I realize I am always tired and sleepy once the weather changes to cold.
  6. I find pure joy in my son's laughter... it is like a drug that induces an altered state of consciousness and the sound makes me want to make him laugh all the time.
  7. I really want more children.
bonus randomness: I just painted Squink's toes a lovely color... because asked nicely.

I tag:
Jordana forgive the grammar and such on my comment... I am in a hurry today, it is my mom's birthday!
Kathryn Happy Birthday!


Sunday, November 11, 2007

War poems

In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

The Charge of the Light Brigade
Alfred, Lord Tennyson


Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!
"Charge for the guns!" he said:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.


"Forward, the Light Brigade!"
Was there a man dismay'd?
Not tho' the soldier knew
Someone had blunder'd:
Their's not to make reply,
Their's not to reason why,
Their's but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.


Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.


Flash'd all their sabres bare,
Flash'd as they turn'd in air,
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
All the world wonder'd:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro' the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel'd from the sabre stroke
Shatter'd and sunder'd.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.


Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro' the jaws of Death
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.


When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wondered.
Honor the charge they made,
Honor the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred.

Copied from Poems of Alfred Tennyson,
J. E. Tilton and Company, Boston, 1870
On this webpage

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Life redux

Last night was spent with some friends... reacquaintances... no, friends sounds more apropos... discussing unusually small appendages, high school frivolity and insanity and one unanswered question that I promised I would ask and only made one of them do a spit take... and unfortunately not the one it was intended for...

Could I have served too much wine?

Of course, I was a little freaked out when the one who is a counselor suggested I was overly obsessed with small appendage person... of course I am, because never before has one human been so worthy of my obsession with their "beingness" as a source of my intellectual curiosity.

I had a good time, and it is always an interesting process to spend time with people whose source for inter-relations is a shared past... but bringing that past and shared or similar experiences into the present can be a fun journey.. I learned a lot about them, Things I hope I get the chance to discover more about.

It is nice to know that the world does have lovely people, plus how often do you get to meet a like minded soul who loves Latin mass and abhors the hootenanny and liturgical dance gracing the "stages" of churches these days (I say "stages" for that is what their inclusion makes the front of the church). That was cool. Heck, the whole evening was enjoyable, and I hope it is not the last of them.


Thursday, November 01, 2007

Who here loves vanilla?

I do!

Vanilla is one of my favorite things to use in the kitchen... I would put it into more savory dishes if I could figure out how. I use it in everything sweet.

Anyway, Jaden from Jaden's Steamy Kitchen is having a contest and will be giving eight (yes 8) lucky folks a half pound of vanilla pods from a place she loves and trusts.

I do not know if I will win, but I am sure going to try!

Go here to see the contest details, nothing could be easier!


Saturday, October 27, 2007

Home Tour 2007

I am exhausted.

But, exhausted in that way after a performance, where you are like a monkey in the jungle swinging through trees... in that I also feel amped up.

We helped the local historical society by putting our house on their tour.

It is an incredible experience to have so many strangers peek around your things, have a glimpse into your life.

I was fortunate enough to have some dear friends come over and help out by talking to people and pointing out the neat things about the house we live in.

But I am so freaky tired, and the Squink never got a nap because it is hard to put a kid down when there are lots of folks in the house... so we are winding down, mindless in front of the television set, not even sure of what we are watching.

also posted over in the house blog, which rarely (uhmm, never)gets posts since folks started walking in randomly.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

little sad boy

little sad boy, originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

Last night, he had a tough time getting to (and staying a-) sleep.

One of those dreaded "did not get a nap and ended up at a birthday party" kind of days... where they get so spun up they just can't relax enough to fall asleep.

Finally, I brought him into bed with me... he proceeded to fall out and skin his lip (about 12:30 am)... which I am willing to bet dollars to doughnuts is more painful than a skinned knee.

He refused Tylenol and once I got the bleeding stopped, I just put him to bed and let him cry himself to sleep... which happened much faster than I anticipated.

He slept until 8:30 the next morning.

He woke up in a surprisingly good mood in spite of my following him around with a camera (since he would not let me look at his lip very closely so I thought I would take a high res picture and look at it that way).

He ended the morning giving me this look... which is equally precious!


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Making sand castles

Making sand castles

It was a lovely fall day!
We took the Squink to the park and played in the sand. Since it is often on the warmer side here we went to the one that has a water spout in the middle of the sand pit. We taught him how to make a sand castle, which he devoted non stop attention to for over 45 minutes. As a matter of fact, we had to force him to leave, he probably would have spent more time making them.
We lured him away just as the local trolley stopped at the park, so we climbed aboard and rode the neighborhood circuit as well as the downtown one.
When we got home we did a little around the house and I made some of the best grilled ham and cheese sandwiches ever!
All in all it was a rather enjoyable and relaxed day.
I needed it.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Eats shoots and leaves

Before I continue there are a few things I want to say;

  • 1) I try daily not to cast stones.
  • 2) I fail in accomplishing aforementioned statement daily.
  • 3) double negative are probably the only things that irritate me in spoken English. (they don't bother me in Spanish, but they are acceptable there).
  • 4) I actually love to find grammatical and/or spelling errors.
    • 4a) They make me smile when they are funny.
    • 4b) It is nice to be reminded that I am not the only one out there with similar KSA's.

So, I was sitting in front of my computer this beautiful fall morning reading my not so new obsession (food blogs - over 500 in my reader) and found this lovely gem;

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

the possibilities are endless...



Currently, Squink is the only one who can legally travel in our household.

You may have heard how folks are waiting months and months for their passports, Squink got his in 10 days.


Thursday, October 04, 2007

monkey feet?

monkey feet, yes, monkey feet... my favorite search term that lead some poor unsuspecting soul to this silly excuse for a blog this week!

give me a break, I am trying to generate some excitement for this.


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The science of death

I find it very disturbing that there is a whole field of research that looks at how to "more humanely" implement the death penalty.

Blair Via Motorola Q Smartphone

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Wherefore art thou?

So, why the heck has my beside table been "unavailable" on flickr for over a week?

Or is it just me?

I think I fixed it, but how lame! Next thing you know they will be banning breastfeeding pictures too.

Monday, September 03, 2007

My bedside table

bedside table, originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

Click through for notes via the flickr genii -

However, I have read about some recommendations from the lovely and thoughtful and impressive yarnstrom... and went out and bought some Alain de Botton and must say that IFF I were a male, I would want to be him... and that is only after reading one book, the one in the middle called "On Love". A fabulous exploration on the love of eros (as opposed to philia, agape, thelema, and storge) though in a way all forms are discussed. I hope that the beauty of his writing continues. I mean how often does a treatise on love include Nietzsche, Hobbes and Proust?

I have a few more to go in that pile on the right, two of which are his.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

My name is Blair...

..and I am addicted to the Disney Channel

It became painfully obvious when I thought I had to blog about how Ashley Tisdale looks stoned in her interview for High School Musical 2...

Who cares... ?

I shouldn't!


As the great poet and mathematician Josef Schweiger once said "What to do, what to do?".

IS there rehab for this?


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sunday, August 26, 2007

In semi related news...
How common is it for your child to scream (not hum) Antonin Dvorak?


Saturday, August 25, 2007

Facebook deleted one of my photos

This one...
Photo taken by Krista Boggs


from Facebook 4:12 pm (3 hours ago)
reply-to Facebook
date Aug 25, 2007 4:12 PM
subject Facebook Warning

You uploaded a photo that violates our Terms of Use, and this photo has been removed. Among other things, photos containing nudity, drug use, or other obscene content are not allowed, nor are photos that attack an individual or group. Continued misuse of Facebook's features could result in your account being disabled.

If you have any questions or concerns, you can visit our FAQ page at

The Facebook Team

Just putting it out there.


Saturday, August 04, 2007

China has amazing powers over your soul

Via devclue.

I find this extremely funny, sad, and curious. It amazes me how they can manage to try to control the religious beliefs of Tibetan Buddhists... really, how can they control reincarnation?
I mean, there are some major "core values" to their *ahem* atheist philosophy being called into question with this one.

Here is the link to the article

Monday, July 16, 2007

On the narrow gauge train to Silverton, CO

We just returned from an extended family vacation to Durango, CO.
We went to many sites including Mesa Verde (fabulous though crowded, but not overly so) and Hovenweep (barely crowded).
We went on the train, some braved the rapids, and others just tried to relax (a dying art form I believe)
We had a week without internet, cell phone, land line phone... but a nice little cabin outside Durango proper.
It was nice, but it is a little nice to be back.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Preliminary results

[insert deep breath here]
Just one more test to go for the complete result. I am now optimistic.


Monday, June 25, 2007

Really, I mean it, wear sunscreen: story of a biopsy.

wear sunscreen!

wear sunscreen!, originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

We are family...

I heart facebook, I really do... even if it is a trendy thing for young folks these days... but the key to why I love it is the reason why!
When I was in medical school I was lucky to live with a fabulous family in Ecuador, and by fabulous I mean fabulous! After all, this family took me in though they had not seen me in over 20 years, had two children of their own and they gave me room and board and while I can't speak for them, I had a new "extra" family. When I left the parents told me that I was like a brother and sister to their children and that they would always be grateful for that... I guess that went both ways... I have brothers and a sister, but with this family it was different, they took me in lock, stock and barrel. I think that they are an extension of my very own personal family...
so the facebook connection?
I found the two kids, one in college and the other about to graduate high school. I have that feeling of general contentment, happiness that is rather rare. I was able to get their phone number and called tonight and spoke to the mom, what a joy to hear her voice. I am so lucky I had a chance at being a part of their lives, for their caring for me when I was in a really interesting place in my life; which was not being a med student but returning to my childhood home. I feel satisfied with the reconnect, and am grateful for facebook for allowing it to happen!

Tags: ,

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I wish I loved doing them as much... the Squink does... though to me they are a matter of routine and offer me no excitement.

He loves to;

1) bathe
This evening I heard the bath water running and when I went to investigate I found the boy in the bathtub... he undressed all by himself, he put the stopper in the drain all by himself, he turned the water on all by himself and he got in all by himself.
Do you find this as scary as I do?

2) brush his teeth
If allowed, the Squink would stay in the bathtub forever, it is almost near impossible to get him out... except for one thing... if I ask if he is ready to brush his teeth, he jumps out of the tub and runs to the sink yelling "teeth, teeth, teeth". While I still have to brush for him at the end, he would keep that brush in his mouth moving it around for a good twenty minutes or more, though I have never let it go on and see how long he would really do it.


Sunday, May 20, 2007


Squink was only in the NICU for about 11 days.

Those days were really hard, but they were only 11 days.

Malcom had been there for months, other babies were looking at staying there for months. I have always felt like Squinks' 11 days, in comparison, were nothing, not even worth calling him a preemie... at least out loud to other people. Least they say something like "he was only there for 11 days, that is nothing".

Yeah, I know it is an internal struggle... no one has ever said anything about my claim to be a mother of a preemie as not being valid. Even the mommies of babies that had been there for a while never say that... but there is something that hangs out there in the air like a nasty noxious fume of a cloud that says "but your baby was only there for 11 days".

I can't see a picture of a baby in an incubator without tears welling up in my eyes, my heart feeling a little tighter, my brain getting muddled in recalling those days. those 11 days.

o, I have been trying to read this wonderful blog called sweet|salty for a while... she captures those feeling of sitting in the "pump house", the vocabulary you have to learn... but the truth is that every time I try to read her wonderfully put together story on this journey... but my heart gets tight, my eyes water, and I have to stop... only because there is a certain pain in recollecting those days when we were asked if we wanted last rights done, or as he was semi-intubated, as he was moved from middle care to the NICU... I don't know how parent's survive it, those days are bleak, hard, filled with beeps and dark hospital wards with tons of itty bitty bodies in different sizes with their own corresponding beeps... where you notice anyone else wearing that color coded hospital bracelet that means someone they love is a little baby in the NICU. Faces that imprint in your memory and have no names, where strangers provided little reassurances, and you are so grateful, where setbacks that others have give you almost as much pain as if it were your own partly because you are so glad it isn't you but know that there is no guarantee you won't be next....

I dunno, read her words if you want to know what it is like to have a premature baby in NICU, even though her twins will be there for 3 months, she is describing exactly what those 11 days were for me. At least what I have managed to read so far, before my eyes well with tears and my heart gets that tight feeling and I have to stop.


Friday, May 11, 2007

Eurovision 2007

My votes for Eurovision 2007 go to any of the following:

LES FATALS PICARDS - L'amour À La Française
They are just goofy and I love it, the absolute fave in my brain... who can go wrong with a vespa (wait, was it a vespa? I was laughing too hard)

D'NASH - I Love You Mi Vida
They make American Boy Bands look like a bunch of thugs

TODOMONDO - Liubi, Liubi, I Love You
Uhm, it just cracks me up - singing "I love you" in a gazillion euro-ways with floating planets, or is it humans floating among planets?

Elitsa TODOROVA & Stoyan YANKOULOV - Water
I am just intrigued, not sure what else to say it is tribal and dark.

Hayko - Anytime You Need
lip-sinking anyone? and ONLY for that reason... I kept trying to figure out what they were saying in the non-English version that was in the video... it made me want to make up things that they were "really saying".

Natalia BARBU - Fight
A pretty girl, a violin and a wanna-be 80's hair metal feel (must be the upcoming reunion that influenced this)

and after looking through the Semi-Finalists I think this group should have not been cut...
ANONYMOUS - Salvem El Món
because they did a pretty good job of looking like an American Red Dead Day Surfers (yeah, that is a bunch of words from some of the American Bands that I think influenced them).

UPDATE: The winner is -
Marija ŠERIFOVIĆ - Molitva
It was a nice song, but had the feel of "just another dramatic ballad" so I did not even listen to the whole thing until the winner was announced... I still think it is just another dramatic ballad and further proof how how Europe has eclectic music taste very unlike ours here in America... only there could I hear a zippy Tom Jones-esque song right after the Ramones, and just before something like Perry Como... which I did. once. unforgettable

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

because sometimes I need some form of inspiration...

Thirteen Things about YOUR NAME

1. I am apparently named after one of my father's girlfriends in college (not my first name though)
2. My first name is unbelievably hard to pronounce in Spanish and that created problems for me growing up, so I would go by other names...
3. My brother and I have a "not exactly elegant" pair of initials together, which some of my fathers people (aka family) like to state every time I see them... I am almost 40, it has been old for a while.
4. A translation of my first name says that it means field or plain
5. My middle name means lord or goddess of the sea
6. Both are originally boy's names though that has apparently changed since the 1980's
7. I like that I can make several puns with my first name - ahem the name of this blog.
8. I hated my name growing up (though probably because no one could pronounce it more than I just plain ol' didn't like it) and had a sit down talk with my dad at age 8 about changing it, I actually suggested the following names as options; Reina and Isabella. (I am still trying to figure out where that came from)
9. I get called Claire an awful lot
10. 25247 - my first name using phone code
11. IFF people get my name right, they try to put an e on the end of it... there isn't one, hasn't been... ever.
12. I have many aliases, all legal. This makes filling out some legal forms a bit of a trial though.
13. I know very few women that share my name, and I love that when someone calls out "Blair" within hearing distance, it is 99.97% of the time directed at me.

I hate references to the TV show "Facts of Life"... for those that knew me way back when also know that "the other name", when the show was running, was a bit to close for comfort.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

I start with this Thursday and these Thirteen because I thought there was a "weekly theme" and the code I had to paste in was updated to show that... but really when I read more of the directions, it just says to write about whatever... but I am leaving this like it is,because for one brief shining moment, there was a theme and it was about our name and not where I was supposed to insert mine.


Sunday, April 22, 2007

I think I may have invented a new blogging genre

Reunion Blogging!

At least I have not been able to find one, except the reunion committee who copied ours because we share the same planner.

I set one up for my high school reunion...


Saturday, April 21, 2007

Strawberry season for inanimate objects

I built myself a white box / light box, and tried out a few shots... I thought this one a bit clever.

Here is what my handmade white box / light box looks like.. I have no idea if I did it right, I think I may have to put something on top but I am not sure I need to during the day! Will try later and experiment by adding tissue paper over the top when I actually use the clamp light I have.

the handmade whitebox

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Kids Are Natural Cooks

Kids Are Natural Cooks was one of my favorite cookbooks growing up, I found a hard cover for sale and it arrived today!
I love it, the illustrations are just as fascinating to me as I remember them being over 30 years ago.
kids are natural cooks


Sunday, April 15, 2007

a stolen stupid meme

I am not sure if the person from whom I stole the meme wants to be known by all, so I will protect them unless I am told otherwise but I stole this from them...
One who shall remain nameless said:
I present to you... the iTunes magic 8-ball! Like so many other great memes, this one works with iTunes on shuffle play; simply focus hard on each of these ten questions whilst skipping tracks!

1) How do my friends see me? Kangaroo by David Gray

2) How will my love life be? Pura Vida by Strunz & Farah

3) When will I get married? Eject by Senser

4) What is the story of my life? Drifting Away by Faithless

5) What was high school like? Til Kingdom Come (Hidden Track) by Coldplay

6) How is today going to be? Acte I - "Non più andrai farfallone amoroso" Figaro from Le Nozze di Figaro (Barenboim) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

7) What should I do with my life? Calender by Bishop Allen

8) How am I going to get ahead in life? What Go Around Come Around, Kid by Cypress Hill

9) Will I get far in life? Girl on the Wing by The Shins

10) Will I be happy? Quartet in E-flat Major, K.428 Allegrom non troppo by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Hmmm, interesting.

Who wants to steal the stupid meme from me?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

pencil effect

Playing around with

More here

Thursday, April 05, 2007

He wishes for the cloths of heaven

Why I like Yeats...

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.

-- William Butler Yeats

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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

a list of 150

Because I am still fighting off vertigo and because I need help getting back in to the swing of things... stolen from Jek.

Copy the list and highlight/bold/color (whatever works for you) only the things that YOU have done yourself.

1. Bought everyone in the bar a drink - but there were like three folks there
2. Swam with dolphins
3. Climbed a mountain
4. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
5. Been inside the Great Pyramid
6. Held a tarantula
7. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
8. Said “I love you” and meant it
9. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment - Sadly, more than once
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was shit faced
42. Had an amazing friend
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe - I wore a backpack and was in Europe, but i was staying at my dad's
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow.
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Posed nude in front of strangers
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an expert
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Eaten fugu (pufferfish)
89. Had a one-night stand
90. Gone to Thailand
91. Bought a house
92. Been in a combat zone
93. Buried one/both of your parents
94. Been on a cruise ship
95. Spoken more than one language fluently
96. Performed in Rocky Horror Picture Show
97. Raised children - In Process
98. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication well, large circulation...
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Petted a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Ridden a bike
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild ** updated 4/08 **
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Petted a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad and The Odyssey
135. Selected one important author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Well, here we go...

I was playing outside with the Squink, we were tossing around some lemoranges (it is the weirdest fruit tree, because it is either a lemony orange or an orangy lemon)... but, that is not the point.

So, we live in this desert, this desert has cacti, we happen to have many varieties of said cacti in our yard...

can you see where I am going with this?

Well, I was trying to see if we had any cochineal on a cacti when Squink grabbed the cactus pad with his hand. Now, please don't think large needle like spines (thorns), think little fuzzy ones in clumps, almost hair like... all over his left hand.
He kept saying "pinch you" and crying, not quite understanding why I could not make it feel any better... Finally I got him to take a nap... not with my heart feeling like it was breaking with the tears streaming down his face as he kept trying to touch things with his hand.

He is doing much better now, (about 5 hours later) but he is still favoring it, holding his fingers spread out because the little buggers got in every nook in cranny a hand can have.

Can I explain how heavy my heart feels at having so little I can do to make him feel better? And the mantra I have been repeating to myself about how this is just what kids have to learn when they grow up here... well, it just isn't helping.

because the two things I could do to help he won't let me do...

BTW - best way to help when this happens is to first pull out clumps with tweezers and then put glue (or hot wax for faces) on and let it dry then peel it off.

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Saturday, March 24, 2007

I am so never parting his hair in the middle on purpose!

All is OK... sorta... I have something that makes it tough to sit in front of a computer screen for a long time though. I am starting to think it may be related to allergies, because this year they are worse than ever.
I also found out that one of my guests for Christmas dinner was probably brutally murdered (no coroners report yet)... which is something that is so unbelievably sad and yet I am so grateful that it was not a member of my family... but may she rest in peace... and I don't think I have ever meant that phrase more in my entire life.
I miss you all.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Eowyn of Rohan

One of the heroines of The Lord of the Rings, Eowyn feels trapped tending to her aged uncle, Theodon. Then her life is completely upturned by the arrival of a handsome stranger from the north. He, however, is in love with another, and Eowyn rides away to the Battle of Pelenor fields where she ultimately finds glory, reknown, AND true love.

Which Classic Heroine are You?
Via Jordana

Sunday, February 11, 2007

my little straw man

my little straw man, originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

A day at the farm can be so much fun.
(n.b. it is neither straw nor a man, hence the poorly applied illogical pun)

Friday, February 02, 2007

I am what, a Yam, or am I a sweet potato?

I make no secret of growing up in the lands of the Inca empire... land of potatoes. Growing up there allowed for an unbelievable number of potatoes to eat... purple ones, purple and white ones, starchy ones, slimy ones, and every single one of them yummy.

I might even say that potatoes are what made me love food so much, because the slimy one in a dish called fritada is probably one of my favorite Andean indulgences.

Now, after I moved to the USA and found what seems to be a whole three different varieties of potatoes... I lost what knowledge I had, as it was not required, though I was always aware that there just was not the variety I was used to... until one dish was introduced to my family... and it became a Thanksgiving staple.

I have no idea what the dish is called, though I refer to it as "Zun's potatoes" (Zun being a name of unknown origins that my Grandfather gave to my Grandmother) though we know that a chef friend who helped us care for Zun made it for her and that is how it came to be a family dish.

So, I read about 100 or so food blogs all ranging in subject from candy to veganism, they are all interesting to me. But one struck me recently and we had one of those comment conversations... as you may suspect, it was about sweet potatoes vs yams.

I was reading one of my favorite food blogs called Is that my buréka?, and his post was about "sweet potatoes confessions". What struck me first with his gorgeous pictures of these orange "spicy sweet potato tikki [patties]" was that that orange can only come from a yam, sweet potatoes have a delicate color that is much more like mashed potatoes (think Idaho here) with loads of butter. So I mentioned that they looked like yams to me in his comments, though I failed to admit that the patties looked fabulous! I also told him I was planning a post on the very dish I mentioned. However, because I am so hesitant to make blanket statements like that is a Yam, I became plagued with self doubt... are they really all that different?

So welcome to my Yin and Yang of the Yam vs Sweet potato debate in technicolor no less (sorry, not currently available in stereo).

The yin and yang of sweet potatoes and yams

I had actually been planning on a post of the sweet potato dish as far back as November, when I was on my diet and unable to eat "Zun's potatoes"... so I noted the recipe, which I had but could not find, from my cousin with every intention of making them post haste once I was able to ingest them with abandon, because that is how I like to eat them. with abandon.

So, the diet ended then the in-laws arrived and life took over and I finally got around to making them last week.

My day of making Zun's potatoes
So I went to my favorite market to get the supplies, and thought that I should get a couple of yams to compare them.

27 to 28 of 07 041
If you go to the Flickr page I have notes saying what is what. But those are the yams on the bottom.

They all sorta look alike though there is a bit more rough texture to the surface of the yams, barely, if you squint.

So I peeled them:
getting to know you, getting to know all about tubers

Aha, I knew that they were different colors. But perhaps the sweet potato takes on a more orange hue when cooked and I was still hesitant to say I had been right about the orange being a sign of a yam.

So I chopped everything up and put the sweet potatoes to boil
27 to 28 of 07 051

and the yams to roast after being coated in some sugar, salt, butter and oil
getting ready to roast before pureeing

While the sweet potatoes (5 medium and one regular potato - the Russet) were boiling I got out the ingredients. Here is where I admit that I could not find the recipe notes, but had to do this all based on recall. I am starting to think that I unintentionally did this on purpose because I am completely unable to follow a recipe.
But I got out what I knew was in the dish - some honey and cayenne pepper
Patagonia Honey - best honey, ever
and some things that I were not sure were in the dish but was going to put in anyway - butter and some half and half.
add ins

Now what I did remember is that the recipe called for 1/8 of a tsp of cayenne as a start. I put what I thought was an eighth each into two separate bowls so I could add it if I thought it needed more of it. I can't find an 1/8 teaspoon on my set now, and while it is possible it got separated and lost it is also possible that I used 1/4 in each bowl.

The yams were done first so I pureed them to a fabulous consistency
yams (a garnet and a jewel)

Then the sweet potatoes were ready and I pureed them and then added the ingredients
with add ins
and then used my hand mixer to puree it some more.

I added between 1/4 and 1/2 a teaspoon of cayenne powder in the end and because I had both and it was lunchtime I made myself an all abandon root and tuber extravaganza even though someone told me it looked like baby... you can guess OK? It was a fabulous carb laden lunch.

The yin and yang of sweet potatoes and yams

For more information on the difference between a yam and a sweet potato;
go here
or here
or pick any of these

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Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Can a human being know anything without divine illumination?

I am in love with Google reader, that I know... whether that is Divinely inspired or not I am not sure... but there is a draw back... I tend to not "visit" each of the blogs I read and just end up feeling like a peeping tom looking at what people write through a Google reader window... now, I try to remember to click on the links and hang out a bit, maybe make a comment... but I am a bit lazy and I am thinking that that is not divinely inspired but a by product of... you know... that other guy.

But enough of my attempts at religious humor... this is actually one of those serious exposing-of-self kind of posts, where I lay bare something I guard carefully in hopes I don't get trampled. These thoughts today, have been... so powerful, I almost feel like not doing a post on it would be a serious offence on my part.

So, I read this blog written by a theology student, (by way of introduction from Mrs. Ootfp) it is way high brow and my one attempt of a comment fell so flat that I just chose to lurk... but today he had a link to this new blog by another theology type and they put out this question... and I was so stumped I think I have read that post like 50 times since I first read it.

Here is where I thank Google reader for letting me be a peeping tom without seeming like a blog stalker, because that would be just plain weird.

But there is something about that question which just raised some sort of something in me and I am sitting around pondering a whole bunch of things... and mostly that question too.

I almost majored in Philosophy in college, one of the reasons is that I had a theologian as my teacher for my first several classes and he got me hooked, I studied Philosophy 101 and Intro to Ethics with him, and those classes changed my life in some really big ways...

One of the things that reading this post brought forth was this intense desire to learn, to be a student, to discuss things deeply and profoundly and to not feel like my perceptions are worthless or trivial (which I guess that they may be, as I am not a true academic, I just play one on TV). To give my quest for knowledge that which it deserves IFF I accept that knowledge comes through Divine illumination...

But I really think this question is fabulous, because if we accept that the quest for knowledge is Divine, then our responsibility to it is equally Divine... the consequences are like ... wow! I am a failure.

I never ever considered this, I guess I both thought and didn't thought (think) that this was a case... I am not particularly religious, I do believe in a higher power, I would not call my self "born again" as it has implications I am not sure about when I consider what I have learned about God, and I think if I had any conversations with many who are devout to whatever religion that they would think I am a travesty... but in the end I still respect the sacred and hence the beliefs.

The one thing that has been running through my mind though is...

If knowledge is sacred, I think God may be really angry with me... and that scares me.

Via Jordana
You know the Bible 100%!

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
Create MySpace Quizzes

Does this give me any more street credibility?


Sunday, January 28, 2007

Malcom News

I got an email from Malcoms' mommy with some incredible news...
Malcom has a little sister!

Congratulations Malcom and family!


Saturday, January 27, 2007

Breakfast in bed

sort of...

As a treat my mother-in-law offered to get up when Squink does and watch him so that I could sleep in... what an amazing luxury so I took her up on it... at least as much as Squink would let me.

So I managed to get up with him and gave him a little breakfast, then I turned on his cho-cho game (it was on sale for $5 when I bought, I would never pay that much for something like this) and turned things over to Oma and went right back to bed and slept rather soundly... for the most part.
I was briefly semi awoken by Squink putting his sippy cup (most awesome water bottle for small kids BTW) in my mouth. So I must say I was not too surprised to find half an English muffin and a slice of cheese in bed with me when I finally managed to wake up.

MY first breakfast in bed served up lovingly by my Squink.


Thursday, January 25, 2007

My first attempt at food blogging

AKA one hot tamale (or two)...

or actually maybe five dozen.

So, I made a two and a half dozen chicken and two and a half dozen green corn tamales...

The green corn ones are my favorite.

I used Maseca (tamale flour) and made the masa according to the package because it was an "instant tamale" flour I had never used before but was all that was available... for the record, I prefer the other flour by the same company.

Once I made the dough I added a bag of thawed frozen corn, some shredded cheeses (cheddar, oaxaca, and some queso fresco), a large can of diced fire roasted green chilies, some chili powder, paprika, a bit of sugar and salt and I mixed it all together. I put the dough into neat little bundles in a dried corn husk that I had soaked until soft.

I did this because my in-laws were interested in knowing the "original" way to prepare them... they were intrigued by the process and concept and I love tamales. I prefer to make them in a social setting with a group of people laughing and having fun, possibly while some of us drink wine or some other nefarious liquid.

I was hoping to be able to break into food blogging by giving you more of an idea of what the actual recipe was, but I realized that I have made tamales to the point of it being almost automatic and the ingredients were not measured, ever.

Damn me, I almost felt like writing about how it was a secret recipe (note the picture I had taken below) but that is just not the whole truth, the truth is that I do not follow a recipe, ever (and no I did not follow the recipe for the masa dough either, but I used the one they had on the package as a base)... this trait of mine drives my husband nuts for reasons that range from "but what if your recipe is so good and you can't ever duplicate it because you don't know it" to "it just isn't original to prepare dishes that way" (what a purist he is). I just can't do that, I improvise all the time, even when I am baking (thank goodness I understand those principle enough to know what can and can't be changed or if I do change what adaptations I need to make...) so there you have it. My first attempt a food blogging and I am reduced to saying that I used these ingredients in an unknown quantity and that I can't follow recipes.

I am planning on doing another recipe soon, based on a blog comments conversation I had about sweet potatoes versus yams... and I will take better notes on what I use to make the sweet potato dish I am planning on.

Oh yeah, I used lard when I made the dough this time, though I don't usually make them with only lard... I actually vary the doughs I make and have made it with shortening or butter or oil or a combination of all of them... the ones with a mix which include butter taste the best to me though.

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Before I forget.

Happy Bobby Burns Day!!

my favorite 'appens to be this one...

Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim'rous beastie,
O, what a panic's in thy breastie!
Thou need na start awa sae hasty
Wi bickering brattle!
I wad be laith to rin an' chase thee,
Wi' murdering pattle.

Which has a famous line in it... go read the whole thing and see if you can find it.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

It's raining mama...

It's raining mama..., originally uploaded by Blair Necessities.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Cue in mission impossible theme song...

well, really it was a dare and since I try never to not do something which sorta scares me... Via rootietoot.
(gotta love that double negative don't we, it did not come out right without it though, I blame the native Spanish speaker in me).

Your mission: list at least five things you love about your body and yourself. Five is the floor; you can always do more. And no self-deprecation! No offsetting a compliment with a dig. Seriously, we all spend way too much time being self-deprecating because [sic]god forbid we appear (gasp!) "selfish."

1. I have a fabulous stomach, even after having a baby.
2. I love doing things for people.
3. I am very good at doing things that the thought of doing often make people uncomfortable but they wish they could do easily (does that make sense?).
4. I am a very good driver.
5. I am a very good thinker, when it comes to theorizing on more academic topics (academic skepticism).
6. I have an uncanny ability when it comes to fixing things.
7. At the end of the day, those I love I love unconditionally.
8. I like the fact that I am still limber enough to put a leg behind my neck and put my palms flat on the ground when I bend at the waist to touch the floor.
9. I love my aquiline profile - I have a great nose.
10. I highly value that which is sacred.

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Friday, January 12, 2007

So, I am reduced to asking you to sign a petition...

For a "National Tartan Day Presidential Proclamation"

As you may (or not) have noticed... men in kilts make my knees weak, and my heart thump just a little harder... (ahem, I said it the movie meme post).

So, if I can get a bunch of proud Scottish-Americans to don their kilts for a day, I am all for it...

and for the record - I would not have asked for you to sign, but I received the link from a reputable kilt wearer who is rather tech savvy and so I would trust the link...

In case you missed my previous two links to the petition; clicking here will take you to it.

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Lights, camera, action...


Or it is a meme?

A meme it is...

Jordana, whom I have known since high school, though she wasn't quite there age wise though she was most undoubtedly much smarter than three-quarters of my class... has managed to tag me with a meme that her college friend NBS tagged her for.... No, I never met him, though I would venture to say that "I am about to take my last voyage, a great leap in the dark."

No, it is not a meme about Hobbes, but is a bit more somber in that... it is a...

...wait for it...

.. a movie meme.

(for those who are thinking that I am truly nuts, that merely is my form of sarcasm)

So, while I do not think I had nearly as abusive parents growing up (at least so claim my favorite curmudgeon and her college friend), I did grow up with a black and white TV set (for a time) in several third world countries and also under a dictatorship in what I would refer to as a second world country.... so, I had my own form of televised torture as a wee one.

Trust me, when I landed on American shores... OK... when I landed in an American Desert (in July I might add)... right after a gluttonous fest of candy indulgence I sat in front of a color TV set and marveled at how awesome the United States of America was... it had good candy and great TV shows... and in English no less... there was nothing on this planet during that first summer I actually lived in the USA that was as cool as those two things... Hanna-Barbera reruns of shows like Hong Kong Phooey or the Banana Splits, then there was Wonder Woman and Shazam, and then those bionic people... and a bird that was yellow and not a parrot or a dragon (I distinctly remember a dragon on the version of Plaza Sesamo I grew up with)...
then there were the air conditioned movie theatres... since I had moved from a place that was perpetual fall-or-spring-like weather to hell on earth, I learned to love air conditioning rather young...

but I digress...

but only sort of, because writing about movie theatres was my transition to the theme of my post and the object of the meme.

FavoriteFavorite movie:

I also grew up on the dubbed versions of several movies that I recall with fondness that in retrospect are mostly Westerns... or The Wizard of OZ, which would show at three in the morning once a year in English with Spanish subtitles. Every now and then, the expat community would host a movie night at the local university theatre and we would go see en mass... there I saw Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, which set the bar for what I considered to be a beautiful woman... yes, I wanted uber thin lips painted bright red, I thought that was beautiful... then there was the time my mother horrified the world by taking us to see Animal House... though I probably should not have mentioned this.

Anyway, so my favorite movie... I suppose that there are a few... I, like Jordana, love Auntie Mame but I can't leave it just at that... I never saw Gigi, though I have always thought I would like it. I love Breakfast at Tiffany's but more for the soundtrack than the movie... I have always liked Apocalypse Now because I think that Joseph Conrad had some profound things he was thinking when he wrote the book the movie is based on. I can't think of any other movies that have achieved such notoriety with me that I could deem them as a favorite, though I am sure I am not thinking hard enough.

One of the first major movies I saw in the USA was the first release of Star Wars, so it will always have a special place in my heart... even though I also saw this "spoof" and loved it. My favorite "cult film classic" would probably be Lair of the White Worm, not because I am a huge fan of Hugh, but because I simply cannot resist a man in a kilt, it makes my knees weak... and it is weird enough for the likes of me.

Favorite movie with a religious theme:

Lillies of the Field always is in my mind, in part because I love Sidney Poitier as an actor, in part because it features East Germany and considering that I went to a German School as a youngun and react strongly to things Germanic (which explains, in part, my choice in husband), and finally because it has nuns, which were very prominent in my life.

Favorite movie priest:

I struggled with this one... I thought to myself "wasn't Bing Crosby a priest in a movie? If so, I can remember it and maybe that is my favorite movie priest." so I looked it up and lo and behold it is one from movie I liked, The Bells of Saint Mary's ... though more for personal ancestral reasons (because that is part of what defines me)... my great-great-grandfather loved the song by that name, so much so that even though it was a "catholic" song, it was played at his very Presbyterian funeral (he was a missionary).

So, aside from that perhaps I would say that I liked Gabriel Byrne as Father Andrew Kiernan in Stigmata. When I was younger I grew up in very catholic countries, so I had one of those moments when I prayed for stigmata, which I have since decided that it is part of what makes one a semi catholic... a youthful desire for a sign like stigmata from God... but I digress, again.

Favorite movie nun:

While I can mainly only remember Mary Tyler Moores' portrayal of a nun, along with Elvis as a good doctor, in Change of Habit, I would venture to add that the nuns in Lillies of the Field are favorites of mine... and for the record, I grew up watching Sally Field in Flying Nun and loved it.

So who do I tag?

Jodi - because she is living the sweet life in Canadia now and doesn't do memes (per se) but could use a diversion I imagine...

I tag Catherine, but only if she feels like she has enough time with her crazy schedule...

and it might be interesting to see Northern_Girl give this a go.