Why I think Jeff is a genius

Jeff’s tenancy with me has consisted in part of him going away and thinking for a spell when I say things like “Why can’t we have the internet on the big screen?” and “We have to many fucking remotes; when you go out of town I can’t even reliably turn the TV on; can you fix that?” mostly to prevent himself from saying something mean to me about how I’m too dumb to understand the two page instruction set he laboriously wrote, AND updated at least twice.  Jeff produces good documentation and I am dumb as a brick; these two facts are incontrovertable.  With respect to the “Why can’t we have the internet on the big screen?” question he had to do a ton of stuff and set up another computer to make it happen.  SO I get to go skipping through life asking why things don’t happen to my liking and he gets to spend hours of challenging labour AND money making it happen.  I don’t know which is worse, that I keep thinking I can get away with it, or that he just quietly goes away and does it without presenting me with an itemized bill.  On the other hand, I do cook around here.

His latest act of genius has been to bow to the inevitable.  I am indeed TOO STUPID to handle more than one remote, but universal remotes almost universally suck.  After lengthy study of the problem, he purchased a universal remote and then spent a goodly number of hours programming it to withstand the depredations not only of myself but of my son, who can be a complete ass when borrowing media.  Sorry son, it’s true.  Of course if you get hit by a car I’m going to regret this, just like I regretted my daily description of cleaning John’s apartment when he moved out immediately after he got killed in an accident, but I don’t go back and oubliette that shit because that’s just lame.  I would rather be complicated, messy and inconsistent, because, er, that’s how I am….  But the truth keeps on being the truth even when you could have picked a better moment for the reveal.

Jeff has not only programmed the remote so I can do whatever I want to do with the tv and the Xbox and the monitor, he’s SET THE AVERAGE AUDIO LEVELS.  So if you’re going back and forth between media you don’t get blown out of your seat if you land in the middle of a tv commercial.  That, friends, is true genius.  And he’s always finding new ways to tweak the remote.  Go tech!

Today is Mother’s Day.  I’m opening at church (and if I’m not, I’ll help….) and then assisting with a Mother’s Day tea.  I decided I couldn’t deal with making soup so I baked a whole salmon and made cinnamon buns.  Jeff doesn’t know I plan on making more, but I do; it’s mean to fill the house with the supercharged smell of home baking and then say oops, you can’t have any.  (Actually I let him eat a couple: “I have good news and bad news.  These are the best cinnamon buns I ever made, and the rest are going to church.”)

Yesterday I did laundry and played Buzz ALL DAY.  I do not play Buzz every day, but I had four separate guitar playing sessions yesterday and I LOVE HOW THAT GUITAR SOUNDS OMG OMNOMNOM.  Also yesterday watched chunks of Canucks game and laughed at Margot for watching Nascar again.  She really likes Darlington, and why not.  My shopping trip yesterday consisted of propane and guitar strings, because the g string ALWAYS breaks on a 12 string; I bought two whole sets and spares.  I talked to Neil Douglas about effects pedals and he laughed and asked me why I’d bother.  I s’pose.

I managed to cut the grass last weekend but I have no fucking clue when I’ll get to do it again because the sky continues to dump precip at an unholy and quite soggy-making rate.

After church, the Horde will descend and I am hoping to barbecue some MORE salmon.

Did I mention that I think my brother is a genius?

so grateful…. and a bit sad

Spent the evening of Peggy’s most recent b-day hanging around the Puddle (I swam eight lengths but boy is my back stiff this morning) and consuming mint tea and biscotti.  Highly recommended.  Paul and Tom were there too.

Last night I dreamed that Justin Bieber was dead and I was hired to squeal like a teenaged girl at one of his retrospectives, there being no actual teenaged girls to do the job.  I was giggling and squealing like a trooper when an unidentified woman about my age came up to me and shot me in the head with a Nerf gun.  And, such are the manifold blessings of my life, I woke the hell up.  No disrespect, but I think The Bieb has peaked.

My coffee is ready.  Jeff has consumed half a honeydew melon for breakfast, but I cannot bring myself to follow his example.

I get to see the Bean soon! My time off at the end of the month is rapidly filling up.

Kenneth Mars has passed away.

Deftly borrowing a suggestion from Lady Miss B

Katie force fed me internet puppies until I gave up.  I declare myself, if not sane, then at least not at imminent risk of sucking on the wrong end of a nitrogen hose, slurping back a castor bean smoothie or committing abutment graffitti with my vehicle, my current top three most favoured methods of self slaughter.

Then the minister showed up and said she’d stab me in the eye if I didn’t cheer up.  No, of course she didn’t do that.  I thought of that afterwards. She showed up with hugs, a piece of church birthday cake and the Beacon blankie. Sitting in a quilt that is specifically for Beacon members who are feeling porely is actually quite therapeutic.

Paul has arrived, having traversed the thickets and brambles of me being just completely fucking crazy over the last three days, bearing a standing rib roast, which you’ll have to admit is a very nice way to get me apologize for being irrational.

I’m just going to keep taking painkillers and apologizing, I guess.  It will be my new hobby, popping methocarbamol, averting my gaze and apologizing.

When I phoned my mother to tell her not to quit worrying because that really WOULD be insane, she said many encouraging words and some actively evil ones.   And that is why she is my mother.  Jeff said, “Are you telling me I don’t have to move?” and started giggling.  I was giggling too.  So surreal.  Long car drives suit me, even if they make me hurt. Then he gave me advice on how to fix what was fucked up with the tv.  Then I dug my dad in the ribs about his suggestion to volunteer at a soup kitchen.  That candidly got my poor tethered goat, seeing pOp has always considered volunteering for suckers (this a guy who volunteered for the Air Force and served during the Bay of Pigs) and so I had to take the suggestion as pOp considering me a sucker…. but it was kindly meant.  Overbooked already pOp, and I simply am too much like Sheldon Cooper to do well with really disenfranchised people.  Something about not really having a clue about my own privilege.  As for his further suggestion to get a dog, I already have one insanely demanding creature, I don’t need two, although having a reason to go for a walk is good.  I will use their largesse to buy myself some mental health, in those expensive installments that are only partly paid for by the plan at work.

Merry Christmas

Einstein, 1949:

I have repeatedly said that in my opinion the idea of a personal God is a childlike one. You may call me an agnostic, but I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth. I prefer an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being.

Christmas Eve Service was not well attended, but we sang the old carols lustily, and I admired Erin’s little one, and said hey to Rob, who got two whole days off from driving bus. Peggy read so sincerely that I could feel tears welling up – and they spilled.  For unto us a son is given…. and I’ve had that magic, a little life I built (with help) myself and held in my arms for the first time a very long time ago.  And now he’s all big and opinionated, but not so opinionated that he doesn’t love it when I pick him up a milkshake on the way home from church.

No church this Sunday – off to Victoria.

I should go upstairs and wrassle the bird.  For some reason I don’t feel like cooking stuffing.  Must be something wrong with me.

My family can never be too big.

That’s what Gramma Zooss always used to say.  Here’s a couple of Brazilian men who really live it.

The Vikings had a saying.  Better a good foster son than a bad son.

It’s really difficult to describe just how amazing Jeff’s birthday bash was, but it had the following going for it:

1.  The weather which was nothing short of spectacular.

2. The awning – what a lifesaver that turned out to be.

3. HEADWATER.  A simply stunning performance by three extremely talented and loveable young men.  I mean it, to have the pleasure of these guys as working guests was great.  We bought their albums, we laughed our asses off at their between song patter, we listened in rapt silence to their originals and their covers, we loved every minute of it.

4. Wonderful friends and fabulous conversation.

5.  Rob and Kathy showed up with their two kids (6 and 3) and I had to yell at them like an ogress to get them off my neighbours’ lawn, but they forgave me.  Little girl and I danced and drew pictures and played with the thunder tube.

6. Walking into the games room and finding Jeff pogoing to the Dandy Warhols with a small child. My personal high point of the festivities.

7. Jeff excusing me from kitchen duty so I just got a bunch of pre prepped food, which worked out fine.

8. A cooler full of brewskis.

9.  Did I mention Headwater?

10.  Just about everybody who confirmed attendance came, and all the important people – the kids and Paul, Mike and Rozo, Tom and Peggy, Kevin and Rebecca, and Rob and his family, came, and they enjoyed themselves muchly as well.

I crashed out early – I started drinking at noon and between that and the sun I made it to about seven pm before I faded.  Now I have to go have a substantial breakfast and get myself to the staging area for the Pride Parade, as I’m marching with the BCCLA today.  Thank the water cycle it’s overcast, I don’t think I could stand to get fried again.

nowhere close to enough sleep

2004-08-28— Posted by: allegra

Random pic, taken somewhere close to home (2019 edit – by katie, at the skate park on Sixth at Eighth.) Had a great time at Jim and Carol’s last night. Saw the Otto-man, Jerome, Megan & Jenna & Sergei, Tom U., Brian C, Chari (who was in fine form on the subject of marriage), Sarah & Ian, Jim and Carol of course and their neighbour Heather who’s just back from a year in Europe. Mike bailed, no reason given.

Today the board retreat – was supposed to provide coffee and I bought some but of course I am not a decaf drinker so I had to phone Michael and ask him to ask Elaine to pack some, as it doesn’t occur to me to purchase it, shudder. Decaf. I spit at decaf!

Katie was home before we were, phoned up asking plaintively where we were. Nice to have the shoe leather on other foot sez I. Keith is going to try to make the Saturday Karate class. And ask a girl out. Wish him luck.

I hate
2004-08-28— Posted by: allegra

animated smiley faces in business f*cking email correspondence!!! Jumping Jiminy Crickets but that p*sses me right off. I KNOW people mean well, but grrrrr ……

Lexi if you’re reading this the link to the parody of Never Set the Cat on Fire (and there was a guy convicted of that today, fancy that!? found at Fark.com) is at http://www.speakeasy.org/~mamandel/filks/Darwin.html. I laughed until I cried the first time I tried to sing my way through that. Keith is inordinately fond of it as well.

I experienced the embarrassment of having my clothing disassemble as I was coming down the stairs to lunch today. Of all the stupid days NOT to wear a bra, there I am, gone SPUNG into space so I have to skate off into the bathroom clutching my chest. Managed to fix my zipper but I’m scared to breathe now. Watch it happen again at the party tonight, but I’ll be two beers gone and find it amusing instead of paralyzing. Hey Mike! My clothing flew apart and you weren’t there! Just kidding. I suppose it could be worse, I could have done that in front of a bunch of investors. On the other hand… no, let’s NOT go there.

I did phone Katie (it’s an item of clothing she frequently wears) and politely ask her if she’d booby-trapped it. So to speak. Every word of this is true, I have witnesses. Unfortunately, they are all too traumatized to corrugate my story at the moment. (Roger Rabbit reference, that wasn’t a typo.)

Musical evening

Musical evening
2004-08-01— Posted by: allegra

If I had a picture to post of last evening’s events it would be of Lexi, face ferocious, as she attempted to shake a pick out of her guitar. Attendees included (in the audience category) Lynn S, Jim P, Jan G, Unca Dave, and briefly, Katie, and in the participant category, me, Paul, John, Mike, Tom L., Peggy, Lexi, and briefly, Keith.

We covered Tom Waits, Indigo Girls, Bob Dylan, Willie P. Bennett, me, Dick Gaughan, Leslie Fish, Nate Bucklin, Leonard Cohen, the Eagles, Don Henley, Simon and Garfunkel, the Band, Cat Faber, Lyle Lovett, Spirit of the West (take me ho-o-o-o-o-me!) and narrowly missed Nick Cage. Not to mention traditional songs like Wild Mountain Thyme and a wide eyed parody of Will the Circle be Unbroken, in a which a turtle named Myrtle hurtles towards the ground, but the Turtle, was unbroken, bye and bye, Lord, bye and bye… etc. And we sang Never Set the Cat on Fire. INCLUDING (as Keith popped out of his room) the Darwin awards FILK of that tune, including such deathless lines as The Embarrassment would be intense/of dying of your flatulence.

Festivities ceased at precisely 2:09.

I am leaving July up for another couple of days in the hopes that the folks who haven’t read it yet get on the stick. Then it’s gonna go where all good blogs go.

Today the Pride parade. Looks to be a gorgeous day, and MUCH cooler.