Friday, March 30, 2012

All I Really Need to Know I Learned at Recess

I tend to wax a bit peevish when people go on about how everything they need to know was learned in kindergarten.

Now, I must disclose that mine was not a premiere private kindergarten with $10,000 annual tuition and a waiting list.  My kindergarten was a quarter mile away, up a dusty road and taught by our neighbor Mrs. Jones.  Our classroom was in the basement and recess was on the front lawn where there was always a fight over the homemade teeter totter.  Supplies and field trips were minimal.  The snack was a half slice of homemade wheat bread and tap water.
If I had been satisfied with the knowledge I acquired during my fifth year of life, I would still...

  • Be wearing pigtails
  • Have a lifelong unrequited crush on Peter, the kid with the pumpkin noggin and a love for paste
  • Believe that "holding it in" until recess was worth a gold star on my chart
  • Be reading about Dick, Jane and Sally who only communicated in 3 letter words and were the most boring family on earth
  • Be so gullible that I believe people like my Uncle Jake when he told me that a cockle burr was a porcupine egg and that if I tucked it in my armpit it would hatch

I moved on
soaking in knowledge like an organic sea sponge
growing and maturing until
now I too
can solemnly present the cockle burr of knowledge 
to my newly minted kindergarten-aged grandson, Liam
 so he can hatch his own porcupine of wisdom. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Interview With a Chicken

Congress mulls law on cages for chickens
by Edythe Jensen - Mar 25, 2012 10:08 pm
The Republic/ 

Congress is considering new rules for chicken housing and the plan hatched in Arizona is an unprecedented compromise between egg producers and animal-rights activists.

The rules would mandate larger "enriched" cages where chickens could retreat to nests behind rubber privacy curtains, scratch on Astro Turf-like rugs and jump onto perches when they felt like it.  Phased in over 15 years, the requirements would be costly to farmers who will have to expand barn space and replace equipment.  But they are backing the measure.


As usual, Larainy has leaped in to action, (causing a painfully pulled muscle) to bring you an interview with 
Bettina, a Rhode Island Red Hen and union spokesman for  local C.U. (Chickens United).

Me:  Bettina, how long have you been involved with C.U.?

Bettina:  Oh my,  (ruffles feathers, dust mites float away in sunlight) I guess it started the day I pecked myself out of the egg.

Me:  How do you feel about the compromise that's been reached between you chickens and the farmers?

Bettina:  It's bittersweet Larainy.  It's bittersweet.  On the one wing, we're going to be a whole lot better off.  On the other wing, it's a far cluck from a total free range environment which is where we belong.

Larainy:  What's the mood among you fellow chickens?

Bettina:  Let me tell you, the coop was really clucking this morning.  It's the most important victory we've won since we successfully lobbied Chik-fil-A to enforce affirmative action.  They've been using a talking cow ever since.

Larainy:  What's more exciting, the astroturf or the rubber privacy curtains?

Bettina:  Frankly, both are disappointing.  Every chicken I know wanted a renewable flooring.  Chickens are real environmentalists and bamboo would have put us over the moon.

Larainy:  But of course, wasn't it the cow that jumped over the moon?

Bettina:  Frankly, that old nursery rhyme is nothing but an extreme prevarication perpetuating superior bovine stereo-typification.  Cows have never and will never jump over the moon.  No, I was using a figure of speech.  Give us chickens some nice coop to coop bamboo flooring and we'll lay more eggs than you can fry up in a month of Denny's Grand Slams.

Larainy:  What about rubber privacy curtains?  Are those going to be a help?

Bettina:  Another huge compromise.  Listen, can you really imagine  HGTV giving your coop a makeover and suggesting hanging a rubber dish draining mat on the living room wall?  It's hardly the best use of the space.

Larainy:  But then again, I'm a human and I live in a house.  You're a chicken.

Bettina:  THIS INTERVIEW IS OVER!  (Tries to fly off but is unable to get airborne)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Real Cowboys

I have always loved this picture of my handsome Dad, Dean Flake (far left) and his brothers, Jake, Jed and Steve.  It was taken sometime in the 60's on the Bar X Ranch in Pleasant Valley, one of the most beautiful spots in Arizona.

I submitted it to The Sartorialist, a fashion blog where it was featured today.  I'm sure these real cowboys never thought they would be admired for their style.  They probably all had manure on their boots. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Krispy Krack

Last night I was in the drive through at
doing research on the fat/sugar intake of the average American  
(I know, I know, but someone has to sacrifice so you are welcome)  
 when I found myself in back of this vehicle.

You have to admire the ingenuity of a girl, who, when faced with the sad fact that "HOTTIE" is taken, 
steps up to the plate and goes the distance with the letters left in the reject pile.

Which leads me to the following verse:

I caughddy 
a hoddy
being naughddy.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Kitchen Diva

Sometimes, when I'm alone in my kitchen, 
I break into a chorus of "Tomorrow" from "Annie".  
When I discover I am being filmed, 
I immediately add choreography.

I've always believed in a big finish.

Friday, March 9, 2012

The Real Housewives of Al Qaeda

image found here
It has given me great satisfaction to read that Osama Bin Laden's last days on earth were not spent in relaxation at the community pool or eating Chik-Fil-A at the Abbottabad Mall.  He was stuck in a crowded compound with 28 people, including three feuding wives.

The fun started when O.B.L.'s older, unfavorite wife, the shrill Sabar, moved back.  She chose a room one floor below the one O.B.L. was sharing with his young, favorite wife.

Thanks to Larainy's crack investigative team of classified document uncoverers, we get a glimpse into Osama's life of hell before he went to hell.

Old wife:  Osama, you once again forgot to remove the trash and now the house smells of old yogurt.

Osama:  Silence Woman!  How many times must I repeat to  you that being seen removing the trash will bring destruction down upon my head. 

Old Wife:  The expired yogurt brewing in the garbage can is destroying our brain cells even as we speak.

Osama:  We are not speaking, you are whining.

Old Wife:  And another thing.  Why have not you utilized the Grecian formula I purchased in your behalf?  A nice black beard would take off 10 years.

Osama:  As would shaving your upper lip.

Older Wife:  (Lunges at Osama to scratch his eyes out as he backs away.)

Young Wife:  (Enters room and whacks Osama on the turban)  Osama!  How many times have I told you to put the lid down!  (Wrinkles nose)  Wow, what stinks?

Osama:  (Throws up his hands and stalks off to lock himself in the bathroom)  

Monday, March 5, 2012

Stealing Buggies in Texas

I have been dwelling for the last few days in the the exotic land of Texas.   Texas was admitted the the union in 1845 but don't tell the people that live here, because they think that Texas is actually a country and that the United States is just somewhere to stash the rest of us unfortunate  nonTexans.

I've  been spending time with my three Texas grandchildren trying to teach them proper English.


Me:  Now Zoey, please don't say "y'all".  The proper way to address your friends is  "you guys"

Zoey:  Grandma, I think you need another nap.

Liam:  Grandma, do you want to play Pass the Pigs with me?

Me:  Now Liam, do you remember how the last time we played the score was 267 to 26 and somebody had a tantrum?

Liam:  I promise I'll let you win this time Grandma.

Another Texas icon is this grocery store
(FYI, H.E.B. does not stand for Hair Ever Bigger, in spite of the prodigious poufs on Texas Beauty Pageant contestants.  
It's short for Howard E. Butt, the founder, and no I did not make that up)

I went shopping for a few things and was almost done when I remembered I needed to look for salsa in the deli so I wouldn't lose touch with my Arizona roots.  As I headed to the checkout, I noticed to my horror that the only thing in my grocery cart that was really mine was the salsa.  Somewhere along the way I had stolen someone's grocery cart.  I looked around furtively but no one was giving me the famous squinty-eyed Texas stare.  I found my cart just where I'd left it and checked out, confessing my sin to the cheerful, slightly pimply young man in a cashier's apron.  He patted me on the head and said, "Y'all aren't from around here are ya?  I bet you need a nas nap."  And then he announced over the intercom in a conciliatory tone, "If you have misplaced your cart you will find it back by the deli."

I was so rattled I forgot to buy Whoppers