Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Safety Tips

Of course, I  am being totally insincere 
in wishing  you a "spooktaculous" Halloween
  because the only wish Larainy has for this 
 sugar soaked night of unbridled panhandling
is for you and your little darlings to be safe.   

a cautionary list to protect you and your wee ones

1.  You may think that old tales of razor blades imbedded in apples are only urban legends, but don't be fooled by the modern incarnation called "apple with a handle"

 2.  Avoid the home that features year-round red and orange lights, skeletal Santas and a "Haunted Christmas theme"

image found here

3.   Don't be fooled when you see this innocent looking threesome.  You can identify the infamous "Peavler Gang" by their innocent smiles and Snicker flavored breath.  If let them get too close you will never see your hard earned candy again

4. Be aware that in Republican neighborhoods, you are more likely to get a long boring lecture about the flat tax before you get a KitKat

5. Be aware that in Democrat neighborhoods you are more likely to get a hunk of government cheese

6. I don't care how smokin' hot they make your calves look.  Don't try to trick or treat in these

7.  Don't drink Koolaid with this guy.  In fact, run when you see him because he will never be able to catch you

8.  Avoid all treats served in green tupperware labeled "meatloaf, April '09"

9. Do not accept any candy sealed in cat hair instead of plastic

10.  Recognize that anyone handing out Almond Joys is trying to impress the parents and probably needs a friend

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Smart People Just Say No to Smarties


The cheapskate in you is considering buying a 12 lb. bag of Smarties to feed the hungry Halloween hordes, but puh-leze, I'm begging here...


I am still traumatized by a childhood of trick-treating only
in my rural neighborhood of cousins and near cousins whose families were cash poor ranchers like mine.  I trudged through the cold night to homes sometimes as far as a half-mile apart only to harvest a disappointing haul of chalky Smarties and 
miniscule Dum Dums; 
both candies that I suspected were confiscated by thrifty aunts and uncles 
from their children's meager haul and recycled year after year.

Besides,  Smartie consumption 
is a gateway drug
to an addiction to baby aspirin.
 Which is a gateway drug to
 Necco wafers.
Which, when pulverized, 
look just like colorful cocaine

Monday, October 24, 2011

For Whom The Cow Bell Tolls

Not to brag, but I have known the 
Mountain View Toro Marching Band cowbell ringer since she was born.  
Karen has been friends with my daughter, Corinn since diaper days, 
even though both are too proud to admit that they ever wore diapers.

Karen left, Corinn right
They share a lifelong proclivity for battered tennis shoes, 
 battered legs and a disdain of "fake babies" (dolls)

Karen has just finished a fabulous football season as cowbell ringer.  
She consented to an interview.
Me:  Karen, I know you have played a lot of music over the years, 10 years of piano, 2 on the clarinet, and 5 long years on the oboe.  How long have you been playing the cowbell?

Karen:  One glorius year.

Me:  This is a silly question, but what is your favorite instrument?

Karen:  Duh, the cowbell.

Me:  Is it true that the only reason you remained in marching band with its grueling early morning schedule was the cowbell?

Karen:  Yeah, and maybe the band trip to Hawaii was a small motivation.

Me:  What is your training regimen, is performing on the cowbell physically demanding?

Karen:  It is.  It takes a boatload of wrist strength and I do lots of squats to warm up before games.

Me:  How many hours of practice do you put in?

Karen:  Cowbell is strictly on the job.  Without the energy of the crowd going wild, there is really no point.

Me:  Has it changed your life?  

Karen:  Oh definitely.  My reputation has really grown.  I get a lot of respect on campus.  There is a senior I am in competition with for cowbell time, but the crowd likes me waaaay better.

Me:  How do you care for your cowbell?  Does it have a velvet lined case?  Is it returned to ol' Bossy between performances?

Karen:  Naaaa, I just throw it in the cabinet.  It's not even locked.

Me:  How far do you think the cowbell is going to take you?

Karen:  I've got the counselors searching for scholarships.  I'm going to ride the cowbell wave as far as it will take me.

Me:  I know that your mother, Carol, has required each of her children to play certain instruments.  Will you require your future children to play the cowbell.

Karen:  Of course.  Actually, when they see videos of my performances they're going to beg to play the cowbell.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Rockabye Mustache

Apparently our mustachioed darling
was way ahead of the curve
when she took this fashion risk in the 80's
Suddenly, infants throughout the fashionable world
are throwing away the razors and embracing
the decoration of upper lip

 Scooter knows looking a little older
is definitely going to help with getting that recording contract

His parents knew that Linford was special
from the moment he insisted that his formula
"be shaken, not stirred"

Born in Sicily, Vincenzo was controlling
the Garbanzo "Family" at the age of six months

Peter, unable to wash the innocent look off his face,
compensated with a hirsute look both debonair and colorful

Reynaldo liked to pretend he was deaf
to get relatives to lean in
and then "accidentally" spit up all over their faces

Jack Black was living the Nacho Libre lifestyle in preschool
because he knew it was his one way ticket out of  Peoria

A baby without a mustache
is like 
a treetop without a baby in a cradle falling out of it

images found here

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Land of Enchantment

While traveling back to Arizona from Austin, I found the west Texas landscape quite stunning...stunning as in hit by a baseball bat to the side of the noggin til your head is buzzing and each mile is deja vu all over again.

If we hadn't had this fun book to listen to, we might have given up and died on the lone prairie with Cheeto stained fingers and bladders full of Diet Coke.

As we neared the border of New Mexico I asked my husband to pull off the I-10 to drive around Lordsburg.  Now, this request alone is a positive diagnosis of delirium, but hear me out.

When our first little baby was a few months old, my husband was assigned to work on a flood control project on the Arizona/New Mexico border.  Lordsburg was the closest place with available "housing"
So we lived in a dusty little town with nice people and no sidewalks, broken glass and wind. The first time I tried to bake cookies I discovered my oven/range was a mouse condo, full of tunnels and droppings.  Since cookie baking was out, there was little to do but breathe clean desert air, and occasionally eat dinner at the truckstop.  I was so desperate for entertainment that I began watching a soap opera (Santa Barbara) and running in the evening.

But I also had all day to enjoy my sweet baby. 

We occasionally dressed her up in our efforts 
to provide her with a stimulating creative environment.  
 In spite of the tumbleweeds and no movie theater, it was an idyllic time.

After wandering around last week looking for landmarks ("I could swear it was by a broken down windmill") we found the old homestead.

 If I moved back, I bet I would start watching soap operas again.


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

It's a Slumber Party Every Night

A few days ago I was totally obsessed 
waiting for this little beauty to arrive.

How do I feel about it now?
 Let's just say 
that I know 
why Eve chose Apple.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Analysis by Post It

You can tell a lot about a person
by reading their bulletin board.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fairy Tale Farming

Past the Austin city limits on a winding road over hilly country is a lovely place called Sweet Berry Farm where cheerful farmers wear neon safety vests and no one steps in manure.

Sweet Berry Farm  becomes a fake farm every fall, because fake farms are very popular in October.  They swarm with pumpkins, good will and face painting.  Fake farms do not need government payments for not producing pumpkins. They break out rusty tractors to pull open trailers full of hale bales and sneezing children.

Somehow you feel compelled 
to buy food to feed their greedy goats


You are lured into trailers by enticing and oddly shaped vegetables to sit on scratchy hay bales

The youngest are lulled to sleep by the sounds of 
slurping cider and pockets being emptied of money

The fields are full of zinnias, 
but they may actually be poppies in disguise 
because we all felt a little high after strolling through

When I grow up, I'm going to live on a fake farm

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Siri: My Genie in a Bottle

I don't have a "smart" phone which, by default, means I have been walking around for years with a "dumb" phone sending deadly radiation into my noggin.  No wonder my children laugh when I send text messages

Wheree in the heck  iis th comma key i cant live w/o comas 

Now that I finally figured out that my phone is dumb I'm going to trade it in for a "smart" phone.  I asked for one for my birthday a couple months ago and my technical advisers on all things Apple, namely son Cody and daughter in law Breaelle

advised waiting until the new iPhone came out.  

Now generally, I do not believe it is in my best interest to delay receiving birthday presents because when it is my birthday I demand honor, cake and a pile of presents before the clock strikes twelve, but this year I pouted and waited.

Finally, Apple made their big announcement, which turned out not to be not as big as everyone hoped because the new iPhone 4S does not test for DNA or have a laser for hair removal.  Sigh


 it does have an itty bitty "personal assistant" whose name is Siri. Suddenly I have the potential to be Larry Hagman on  "I Dream of Jeannie" with Siri as my own personal Jeannie, only she lives in a phone instead of a bottle and she probably doesn't have a bun on her head or wear a scarf that does not cover cleavage. 

I am already composing a list of commands to give Siri when I finally get my smart iPhone 4s

  • Siri, cast an illusionary spell so my jeans don't make my bum look big
  • Siri, warn me before I step in dog poo
  • Siri, tell me where Moammar Gadhafi is so he can be brought to justice
  • Siri, what shall I do with my stock portfolio
  • Siri, what is a stock portfolio
  • Siri, I feel like cranky mcscooter pants.  Cheer me up
  • Siri, which checkout line is going to be faster
I just can't wait to boss Siri around

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

All Dressed Up With Somewhere to Go


is lurking just around the next cobwebby corner waiting to pounce 
on those who don't think ahead to produce a costume.  
C'mon, you're not going to wear that
faded orange pumpkin shirt again are you?

Let's find out what are creative friends are wearing this year.

 Eldus is going to let down his hair and wear his Gene Simmons facepaint because the little woman gets such a kick out of it

Arlene is boycotting princess costumes this year 
and vows she will cut off any synthetic Rapunzel hair with her scythe 
as she trick or treats as the Grim Reaper

Bobby is wearing his gi and carrying his karate trophy 
when he works the neighborhood for treats 
because he hasn't put it down since the awards ceremony

Lavinia favors combining an eclectic amalgam of styles in her costumes; 
hair from Snowball, her Pomeranian, 
eyewear from Aunt Gert, 
gold chain from Uncle Vincenzio and 
hair accessories handmade at YMCA summer crafts camp

Summer and Sylvan are going to wear their roller dancing outfits for another year 
because last Halloween they scored 4 full pillowcases of premium candy 
due to efficient trick or treating on roller skates

Carlton is going to stay home and do his part to improve the health 
of neighborhood children 
by handing out individually packaged dried plums 
and cards with a link to his website

 Tayshawnda is going as a simple Amish girl
with a bedazzled apron

Eugene plans to sit on his front porch with his attack cat, Sid
warning people to stay off his lawn

Every beautiful image found here