Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Clinging to the walls

We get in a short workout, nothing spectacular but at least we're going upwards. It's practically winter outside. The kids did a hike at a place not far from here on I-90, and said they encountered a foot of snow at the top. We've missed autumn...

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


So dark and chilly, it looked as if summer had vaporized overnight. Wild skies, and thunderstorms eventually developed. Hair doing cheered one of us up. We may have to turn on the heat.
Scrounging around in my bed side book supply; I don't want to reread Madame Bovary again for the book group, I wasn't a Flaubert afficianado in the first place.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Hibernating already

Lucked into another short climbing session; felt as if I were barely hanging onto any kind of stamina. Could be the season changing, the cat is snuggling down more, curled tightly to keep warm. He's getting to be kind of a geezer.
Had to run out to a big discount store for something, and remembered why I hate doing so; depressing to see so many people towing too many little kids around, buying piles of junk. No one has to have that many children, so I have little sympathy for their financial straits, unable to get all those Pampers without going into debt. Target shopping shows the end of the world and how it will arrive.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Weekend mash up

Bit of a climbing workout on Saturday, then much home time; giant tomatoes continue to develop, and the peppers are turning psychedelic hues I hadn't anticipated. Potatoes lurk just below the surface, but we have many to eat before any more can be harvested. Beets are literally popping out of the ground. The gorgeous weather is to end tomorrow in the throes of a "vigorous sytem" which is moving towards us. We have sushi in the face of it.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Sweetness and light

Today's date rang an old bell in our nonegenarian's memory, it would have been her sixty-first wedding anniversary. I thought that called for flowers, especially large yellow lilies and some fall posies. They were much appreciated.
We squeeze pleasure from these last lovely days, which look as if they are doomed to end next week.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

From gray to day

Another little marine push, breaking the heat; the wine store guy said he'd had to rush to get some more rose to tide the store over through the last hot spell. People generally stop drinking roses after Labor Day, he told me. And one isn't to wear white after Labor Day; what bunch of retro fools made up these rules?
Happened to stop by a Trader Joe's while out on errands; mid afternoon, and the obnoxious cart jockeys were thronging the aisles. I remembered why I hate going in there, so many rude people running into the back of my legs. It's like a deli where they yell at you if you don't have your order ready when they want it; if you linger a bit looking at the cheese selection, some hard-driving female barges in front of you. I was just stepping up to try one of their in-store samples, and some thirty/fortyish woman literally jumped in front of me and snatched the last little sample; she had the nerve to turn around, look at me and go "Ha!" They did eventually put out more samples; the guy behind the counter looked at me and shrugged, shaking his head. Sheesh. We've not even reached food shortage crisis levels, and the well-fed are already berserking. Glad for a pleasant evening and dinner later on.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Warm and high

Fortunate to get in another little bit of a climbing workout, with a different friend; she's been deprived, due to work schedule demands, but will soon have them resolved. Another perfect summerlike day, making the farmers market especially delightful. Every kind of produce seems to be at its peak, from berries to squash. The fish feller had two enormous freshly caught coho salmon on ice, waiting for a customer to pick them up. He told me one can call and reserve such fish, not just restaurants but regular old customers, too. I got some fresh halibut, which tasted like food of the gods.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Indian summer

It's here already, belying the fact that it's supposed to be fall. A perfect day for hair doing, walking, and getting gelato for fortification. The kids are up north, climbing, and I hope the temperatures are a bit cooler for them, since I can't quite picture them getting up at dawn to hit the granite. Hope they have wonderful climbing, and beer and yammer jammers after a long day on the monolith.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Sweet and high

My dear friend, a cancer survivor, did a "sprint" triathalon yesterday, which means it's shorter than other types: a half mile long swim, a twelve mile bicycle ride, and a six kilometer (3.1 miles) running portion. She said she felt fine enough today to go to the climbing gym for a nice workout, so off we went. We are finding several routes that are supposedly in our range, which we can't get up. We suspect they are put up by young fellers who climb very hard. We refuse to consider any other possibility.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Weather pendulum

Once again, from deluge to paradise, in the space of a day. Still walking off the stresses of the end of the week, but with pleasure. Lovely sushi repast, as a change up; then back to backyard spuds and such.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


A simple trip to the dentist turned out to be very stressful for our nonegenarian; teeth cleaning gives her the whim whams. Something dire always turns up in your mouth, when you get to a great age; everyone, visit your dentist, take care of your teeth. It's fricking hell to see them go one by one.
We saw the play based on Joan Didion's book My Year of Magical Thinking. As it was a one woman show, I had some worries about it, especially for one of our guests' sake. It was, I thought, quite good, and Didion's voice came ringing through the character's words. She lost her husband and daughter in the same year, and the work showed how someone who always worked to be strong and in control of her life was sideswiped to find she could be rendered helpless. "Life can change in an instant", but as she also said at the end about a daring feat of swimming she and her husband used to do on the Malibu beach, riding the swell into a cave, "He told me, 'Wait for the change, and go with it.'"

Friday, September 18, 2009

Devilish duck

On a little stroll by the lake, I happened to glance at a strange scene; a dragonfly was twirling around near a female duck, who looked up and practically levitated as she snapped at the insect.
Reminded me of those scenes of great white sharks coming out of the water after seals. The dragonfly zipped upwards; you could almost see the "what the fuck?!" cartoon balloon appear above its tiny head. For some reason, I thought mallards ate plants, didn't know they were omnivorous.
Such a hot wonderful day, a last lazy afternoon before more rain.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Washed away

Dust and lousy air, scrubbed bright and shiny; perfect day for the walkabout. On one errand stop, there was a shrunken-looking snazzy red sports car parked out front; the employees were abuzz, and the car owner, a middle-aged looking woman, was proudly showing it off. It was a Tesla, an electric-powered vehicle that can go more miles per hour than ever needed, and costs in excess of a hundred thou. At least it took less raw material to build than a Hummer, but what a bizarre midlife toy for a woman to want. Gets fabulous mileage, though.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mowed down

Squeaked in yard work, ahead of the rains; a spatter of drops arrived as I left the farmers' market with an array of delicacies. Could not resist the take and bake custom small pizza booth, so I brought one home. Their own lean bacon, two kinds of cheese, jalepenos, fresh corn, sauce, and herbs and spices, on a whole wheat crust; it'll last a couple of days, paired with our homegrown tomatoes. The farm that has all kinds of shell beans had what looked like giant kidney beans, so I picked up a container of already shelled ones. Their cannelinis are divine, as are some black and white spotted ones that cooked up like big long black beans. Nice and frozen for later this season.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Odds and ends

Projects lining up; weather shifting, so the yard needs attention. I'll mow, and yank at weeds, need to clean gutters. Good thing I know how to set up a climbing anchor.
Threw aside S.Y. Agnon at the end, I was so tired of reading about religious people, chosen people, yatta yatta. Found a strange little dystopic novel lying around, which was published in the early 70's. Read a review of Margaret Atwood's newest, The Year of the Flood, speaking of dystopia; I am actually looking forward to reading it.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cloudy relief

Sweetly cool and dimmed; makes for fine exercising. Snuck in another bit of a climbing workout, so it's been spread over a couple of days. This friend has a triathalon on the coming weekend, and is still swimming what I consider big chunks of distance, as well as biking. Not sure how she is going to manage the running, as one of her knees is not so good; I just hope she doesn't injure it competing in this event. I used to think triathalons sounded like good training opportunities, but now the thought of them is exhausting and boring. Too much time trialing for me.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Lovely readjustments

Snuck in a wee climbing workout; this friend had her boy along, so we ahd to wrok efficiently before his patience gave out. He did well, even though he was convalescing from a sudden illness late last week.
One more kind of warm day, complete with walks, then a lovely cool evening; we look forward to better sleeping atmosphere.
Stubbornly went back to the Agnon stories. Once you get resigned to the constant yammering about religion, and maybe look at it as an historic point, there are poignant moments.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Heart aching

Such a day, a bit cooler than yesterday, only 83; it gives us hope for a few more tomatoes to ripen in time. Saw a delicious-sounding recipe for green tomato soup, which appeals to me much more than fried green tomatoes or pickled ones.
We get in our walks, and all is well. We caught the last quarter of a hard-fought football game, and I was disgusted to hear the freshman quarterback of the winning team blathering on like this:"First, I gotta say, 'Praise God'!" Then more about his wonderful team, and then more praise gods spewed out. Guess his parents brainwashed this little 18 or 19 year old golden boy real good. What if he'd lost? Would he have thought god hated him, or that evil was at work? Politics and religion mixed are terrible, but sports and religion stink, too.

Friday, September 11, 2009


Big one for the eldest amongst us, saving up energy for the hairdo event; so gorgeous outside we did an auto tour around the lake, which was mobbed as the end of summer throbbed away.
Big doings as women signed up for an "Iron Girl" triathalon which happens tomorrow. The new shade garden area behind the swimming pool building thronged with people and merchants; on a walk I passed a booth which was selling running shoes for fity bucks, some marked down from nearly a hundred. A good deal, with socks to boot.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Swung into light

Summer's supposedly going to make another pass at us, and the day of errands was sunlit and lovely. Much running about for various items, but I think we've got most everything covered.
Onward with Mr. Beerbohm, but only in small doses.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


Fighting off some kind of virus or other; chilly weird weather doesn't help.
Picked up an odd volume sent by a friend; it's titled The Illustrated Zuleika Dobson, by Max Beerbohm. Strange, set in Oxford, England, almost too clever to abide, but an interesting work to compare to the Jane Austen parody.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009


Finished the Jane Austen send up with zombies, and passed it along to a young friend, who thought a friend of hers who adores Austen might enjoy it; if she has a good sense of humor, she probably will. Into the schizo early fall atmospere, wherein the sun tempts us, then shuns us.
Unlikely that the enormous green beefsteak tomatoes will all ripen before they rot. Put in some spinach seed, hoping it stays mild enough for it to thrive. The kale now looks like a privacy hedge, getting almost as tall as my shoulders, and quite beautiful.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Yet more diluvia effluvia

Building us an ark out back; the old shed ought to do nicely, it's almost floating already.
Okay climbing session with one of my dear friends; we both felt strange, achey and tired. We hoped it was not a touch of the old swine flu, but merely a reaction to humidity and revitalized molds.
How can zombies mixed with a parody of velly old English prose be so hilarious? Do peep into Pride and Prejudice and Zombies if you encounter it, and all shall be revealed.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Diluvian day

Rained so hard in the wee hours, it sounded as if a waterfall had started in our driveway. Definitely cataract-level noise; Angel Falls, Iguazu.
We managed to grab two short periods of sun - "sun breaks," as they are ominously called by the delirious weather folk on TV - for our nonegenarian's walks. Mine came when the deluge resumed.
Tired of the pious Agnon, decided to try Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. It's pretty danged funny; turns all that societal nattering in the original on its ear, and then throws in the "manky undead" to boot. Very silly, and terribly amusing. Probably not to deadly earnest Austen afficionados, however...

Saturday, September 05, 2009


A day of kind of waiting around, maintenancy little stuff done; swell walks for our nonegenarian, who will, along with the rest of us, have to steel herself for the sogginess that lies ahead. We watched an homage to Julia Child, chuckling away at her fruity intonation of funny asides, and her nonchalant sweeping of bits and pieces onto the floor behind her. Horror mounted in us as she manhandled the chorus line of raw chickens, then proceeded to touch everything around without washing her hands. Rueful moues when she went on about how poultry safety was so important, that she'd been reassured by the USDA that conditions were much improved, and if they weren't in your state, you should immediately write your congressmen about it; we've been back to the days of The Jungle or worse after the past eight years of Bush/Cheney.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Long weekend

Weeding and feeding, harvesting spuds, tomatoes, and the last few fava beans; it eventually clouded up, and rained in the wee hours quite nicely. We got Camelot around here.
Carter's The Passion of New Eve proved to be quite a rock-em sock-em dystopic story with a fragile hopeful ending. There were ghastly bits, but overall, quite a fine read.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

stuff and stuff

Bailed on most of my walk around erranding day to do a climbing session with a friend who's been very busy for a while with a boyfriend; she's experiencing workplace woes due to budget problems in the city school system, and needed vertical therapy stat. She recently got an amazingly cute miniature dachshund puppy, who is so good-natured he has made me rethink my low opinion of the breed. Of course it's the owners who turn the dogs into assholes, by setting the tone. We had a swell workout, great chat, and I managed to squeeze in a bit of choring later.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009


With sun and warmth, maybe the last hot day of the year; nice climbing workout with a friend, who brought along her amazingly patient ten year old, who hung out amusing himself while we climbed.
Moving right along in Carter's The Passion of New Eve, but it's starting to get kind of frightening. An unsympathetic male character has been whisked under a desert into what sounds like a super-feminist compound, where it is darkly hinted that he will undergo drastic changes to his anatomy; yikes. This is a twist on dystopic stories.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009


Dim and foggy at first, then showery and gray; made for sleeping late. Just the usual walking and such, errands, things to acquire, and lists to tick away.
Got into an odd little novel by Angela Carter, Shadow Dance, her very first published; sort of histrionic, but the signs of wonderful writing potential are there, glimmering amongst the overwrought bits. Next one is another early one of hers, The Passion of New Eve, which kind of fits in the transgressive category, about sexual deviance, transgendering, and other thrills. Carter was ahead of her time.