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Archive for September, 2009

Odd, But Cool

Lately I’ve been coming across some intriguing things on the Internet, and decided today to share some with you.  This isn’t rocket science, and it won’t strain your brain, but some of them may make you smile or go “Hmmmm?”

This is a bird nest made completely out of nails.  Not only did a bird lay her eggs in it, but also stayed there until they hatched!

nest of nails

This is Pac Man in Moscow.  Don’t ask me what he was doing there, but, apparently, he wandered through the city trying to eat things…  Yeah, I know it’s corny, but I like it anyway!

pac man in Moscow

This next is a very cool traffic light sculpture.

traffic light sculpture

Then, there’s this oddly thin house!  Wouldn’t you like to see the inside?

weirdhouse

For this final one, I’ll include a warning – don’t look if you get grossed out easily!  Personally, I think it is really interesting, but I’m weird like that.  If you DO look at it, tell me something…do you think it’s real?  At first I was sure it must be Photoshopped, but it looks awfully real to me.

weirdeyes

Okay, I hope you’ve enjoyed these.  Have a good day and try not to dream about this guy’s eyes!  Ha!

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Small queen bannerOkay, today I’m introducing what will be a new regularly-occurring feature of this blog entitled “When I Am Queen.”  I have this fantasy of living in a world where the good prosper and the bad are punished.  I visualize things making sense and justice prevailing.  But, whenever I listen to the news or pick up a newspaper, I can see that our country is going the wrong way, and getting there fast!  So, it pleases me to sometimes imagine how I would start whipping things into shape, if only I were Queen!

Today I’m focusing on crime and punishment.  When I am Queen, certain crimes will merit immediate death.  They are:

1) Drive-by shooters who shoot innocent victims. I hear this on the news almost everyday, about how a bullet flew into a child’s bedroom and killed them or how someone who was simply driving down the street with friends or family is suddenly dead.

2) Child molesters. Is there a lower form of life?

3) Rapists. No explanation needed.

4) Abusers. There is a sub-species that thrives on hurting and emotionally harming others.  They especially prey on the very old and the very young.  I debated on whether or not to place this in my death category, but couldn’t think of a reason why not to, considering all the trauma and torture they inflict on others.

So far, those are my four main categories.  Once convicted of one of these crimes, the perpetrator will immediately be beheaded.  (I chose this form of execution because, as Queen, I thought it would be very satisfying to yell “Off with his/her head!  So sue me!)

Some of you might already be thinking I’m a hard Queen, that I’m inflicting cruel and unusual punishment.  Tough.  Everyone in my kingdom will know the law.  They will know what the punishment is for these crimes.  So it will be THEIR choice.  If they do the crime, they’ve signed their own death warrant.  And no, this doesn’t make me as bad as they are.  Someone has to protect our world from these evils.

If you think of any more crimes that should be included in this list, leave a comment.  Otherwise, have a lovely day!

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A friend recently forwarded me the following interesting memory, and it immediately reminded me how much simpler life used to be, before the United States turned into the capital of  “political correctness.” This was back before it became fashionable to be a “victim,” when people weren’t sue-crazy and everyone took responsibility for themselves.  The piece came with no attribution, but I believe some of it came from this website.  The rest, I don’t know.  If you’re a reader “of a certain age,” I think you’ll enjoy this as much as I did!

THE DAYS OF BLACK AND WHITE

Black and White (Under age 40? You won’t understand.)
You could hardly see for all the snow, spread the rabbit ears as far as they go.
Pull a chair up to the TV set,
Good Night, David..
Good Night, Chet.’

My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread Mayo on the same cutting
board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn’t seem to get food
poisoning. My Mom used to defrost hamburger on the counter and I used to eat it
raw sometimes, too. Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a
brown paper bag, not in ice pack coolers, but I can’t remember getting e.coli.

Almost all of us would have rather gone swimming in the lake instead of a
pristine pool (talk about boring), no beach closures then.
The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager
was the school PA system.
We all took gym, not PE…and risked permanent injury with a pair of high
top Ked’s (only worn in gym) instead of having cross-training athletic shoes
with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can’t recall any injuries
but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.
Flunking gym was not an option… Even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be
much harder than gym.

Speaking of school, we all said prayers and sang the national anthem, and
staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention.
We must have had horribly damaged psyches. What an archaic health system
we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a hat and everything.
I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed
to be proud of myself.

I just can’t recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station,
Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations.
Oh yeah…And where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that
bee sting? I could have been killed!
We played ‘king of the hill’ on piles of gravel left on vacant construction
sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of
mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn’t sting like iodine did)
and then we got our butt spanked.
Now it’s a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49
bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor
for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.
We didn’t act up at the neighbor’s house either, because if we did we got our
butt spanked there and then we got our butt spanked again when we got home.
I recall Donny Reynolds from next door coming over and doing his tricks on
the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she
could have owned our house.  Instead, she picked him up and swatted him
for being such a goof. It was a neighborhood run amuck.  To top it off, not
a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a
dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that?
We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes.
We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn’t even
notice that the entire country wasn’t taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?

LOVE TO ALL OF US WHO SHARED THIS ERA. AND TO ALL WHO
DIDN’T, SORRY FOR WHAT YOU MISSED.
I WOULDN’T TRADE IT FOR ANYTHING!

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“Whiteout” – The Movie

whiteoutI don’t attend movies nearly as often as I once did, and this one reminded me why.  The movie stars Kate Beckinsale, Gabriel Macht, Tom Skerritt and Alex O’ Loughlin and was described in the synopsis as follows:

After two years stationed at Antarctica’s South Pole research base, lone U.S. Marshal Carrie Stetko (Kate Beckinsale) is as anxious as anyone to be going home. She’s turned in her resignation and is counting the hours and minutes to the last plane out. But three days before departure, a body turns up on the ice and Carrie is immediately thrust into Antarctica’s first murder investigation. As the death toll mounts, the mystery deepens with shifting loyalties, deadly whiteouts, and a relentless killer who will stop at nothing to protect a secret buried for over sixty years. Now with everyone around her packing up and getting out, Carrie must solve the crime before Antarctica is plunged into six months of darkness and she is stranded with the killer on a land where nothing comes in and no one gets out.

Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?  I’ve seen other movies and read books which were set at scientific stations in Antarctica and they have been real nail-biters.  There’s something about the isolation and vulnerability of being so cut off from the world that creates a suspenseful, eerily spooky mood.  So, naturally, my hopes were high for this movie.

Unfortunately, it didn’t deliver.  The plot was weak and so full of holes that you could drive a Sherman tank through them.  I should have known, when the  movie started with Beckinsale taking a shower, that they were hoping to hold onto their audience, particularly the males, when they realized there would be no story.  But, okay, I figured I’d hang on and give it a chance.  Unfortunately, it was one of those movies where, every five minutes you’re seeing yet something else that doesn’t make sense. There’s a murderer loose and yet half the time she, the Marshal, forgets to take her gun with her!  There were scenes when she’d go outside without any face protection.  Come on!  This is Antarctica!  The temperatures are below minus 60 degrees centigrade!  Your nose could freeze and drop off!  But no, the producers probably felt it was more important to show her celebrity face than to make the plot plausible.  And the fight scenes outside (and there were many,)  were almost totally obscured by the blizzard.  That way, you couldn’t tell the good guys from the bad guys and had no one to cheer for.  But hey, the characters were so poorly developed that even the good guys should have been booed, just for their poor judgment in being in this movie.

As for the “twist” ending?  Three-fourths of the way into the movie, I turned to Babs and told her who the murderer was.  And I was right!  All in all, I was so disappointed.  With some good writing, this movie could have been so suspenseful.

As it was, I left the theatre wishing I could “whiteout” any memory of having seen this dog.

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P.S.  Don’t worry, maybe next time I’ll tell you how I really feel!

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A Tale of Two Trees

As I’ve pointed out in many other posts, there’s a lot more going on in nature than meets the eye.  (At least in my mind there is!) To give you an example, here’s the tale of two trees.

First, there’s Martin, who wanted to be more than just a tree.  He also wanted to be a soldier.  But, how could he do that, stuck in one place as he was?  Let me give you a hint, here’s Martin.Spike tree

Still don’t get it?  Probably not.  Maybe it would help to view this:

regimental spike helmetSee?  Martin has grown his own regimental spiked helmet!  See?tree's spike

Okay, even if you think it’s a stretch (which it isn’t!) you have to admit he’s doing something with that tall topknot!

Moving right along, we have Elivine tree

Here he is, standing vigil at the side of the driveway, all green and healthy looking.  So, what’s wrong with this picture?  Eli’s been dead for two years! You see, after he died, the rest of the woods heard rumblings from the humans that he should probably be cut down.  Something had to be done!  So, all the vines started creeping from all over the woods and started draping themselves all over Eli so he’d look okay.

vines on tree

All summer he has looked normal.  And, who knows?  He might last for many more years, as long as he has friends to cover his back!  Sort of like the rest of us…

So see what I mean?  Never look at a tree again thinking it’s “just another tree,” ’cause you just never know!

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When “Just Me” asked in the comments the other day whether I’d seen any good clouds lately, it spurred me to put on my Cloud Patrol uniform and start scanning the skies a little closer for some meaningful formations.  And, in the last several days, I’ve managed to gather four odd, but somewhat interesting clouds for your viewing pleasure.

This first one is an alien ghost.  He’s white.  He’s wispy.  He’s a ghost!  I can tell he’s also an alien because , well, look at those big oval eyes!  Trust me, those are alien eyes.  Plus, he has an antenna sticking out of the top of his head.  You can also see the suggestion of arms at his side.

alien ghost

This second is a “cloud zipper” that’s unzipped.  See the zipper’s teeth?  Okay, only one side has good teeth, but you get the idea, don’t you?

cloud zipper

Third, we have a sleeping pregnant lady.  Her head is on the left.  You can see the top of her head, an eye, nose and her mouth, which is open.  In the middle of the picture, her boob is sticking up.  Then below that, there’s her big stomach. She just looks like she’s lying there sleeping in the sky!

Preg lady

Finally, we have this big guy, whom  I think is an American Indian.  He’s facing to the right.  He has a big eye and a noble jutting nose.  His mouth is open.  There’s quite a space between his nose and mouth…

Indian cloud

Well, let me know if you were able to see at least some of these formations.  Once you make out a shape, it’s impossible to NOT see it!

And, until next time – keep your eyes on the skies!

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“Danger Cat!”

In the little strip of woods behind my house, there live all kinds of creatures – opossum, raccoons, birds, deer, and the occasional woodchuck.  But, without a doubt, the fiercest, most hostile, vicious, most savage of them all is…DANGER CAT!  Danger CatI don’t know if you can tell by this picture, but he has devil eyes and most of the side of his face has been torn off above his eye.

Danger Cat is most likely feral, but judging by how beat up his body is, he has mastered the art of survival.  He can often be seen dashing into the woods with some poor squirming creature in his mouth.  Once he has taken it to his lair, I often see him later, swaggering down the driveway, gazing to his left and right, as if daring some other animal to take him on.  He has obviously been in many fights and is the worst for wear.  Also, living in the woods has taken its toll on him, as evidenced by this picture of the back of him.  You can see mange and, what I fear are parasites on his back.Cat parasites

Once I saw a woman walking her bulldog in back.  The bulldog thought he was hot stuff, judging by the ostentatious spiked collar he was wearing, and looked pretty tough.  From the corner on my eye, I saw Danger Cat make an appearance, walking straight toward the bulldog and woman.  I remember thinking “Oh no!”  But I shouldn’t have worried.  Danger Cat got to within four feet of the dog and then sat down and stared straight at him.  The dog let out a couple of harrumphs and then a couple of mournful whines.  The woman guided her dog around Danger Cat, while he sat and basked in his victory.

Here’s a picture showing a rotten banana he killed.  dead banana

Like any predator, he played with it for quite a while before he put it out of its misery.  After this picture was snapped, he hauled it away into the woods.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he had a whole pantry of dead things stocked away for winter in his hideaway, along with a fifty-two inch flat screen TV!

He’s become such a legend to me, that I wrote him his own theme song, called, quite appropriately, “Danger Cat.”

Danger Cat!  Danger Cat!
No one knows where you’re at!
Slinkin’ ’round, never still,
All you do his stalk and kill!
Danger Cat!  Danger Cat!
Eating mouse and snake and rat,
Danger Cat, I must surmise
If you could, you’d eat my eyes!
Danger Cat!  Danger Cat!
Pouncing like an acrobat.
There he goes, tough and grim,
Danger Cat – DON’T MESS WITH HIM!

(Of course, I could wonder where he came from and if he’s in pain.  But, something tells me that he’d absolutely hate that.)

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