Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Hallowed E'en

 Jorgen comes in from the field each day with his halter jauntily off one ear.  I wonder if another horse is pulling him around by the head, or if he is being "cool" like a boy wearing a ball cap to the side.  

He was spooked this morning and ran up the hill when I lifted the hay feeder off the bit of hay left.  No other horse was out.  He rolled deliciously in the sun, then, figuring the danger was over, returned to see if he could now get at that hay.  It was then I noticed he already had his halter askew.  He is doing it by rolling.

He is quite the alpha horse, despite being the smallest.  I might even go so far as to say he is "pissy", meaning he would stand in the middle of all the hay and well, pee on it rather than let anyone else have any.  The other two stand delicately at the edges, eating what they can before he squeals.  Notice how he puts his whole pie hole in the hay.

Lazarus is another one that has a more difficult personality.  He is somewhat mentally ill, but tolerable if you know how to deal with him.  He lives outside, mostly.  When we had a storm this week, he was in the house (why??) and was so nervous, he went feral.  He wanted out!  Now!  I couldn't get him out the door because he would try to attack me.  I finally propped it open and ran him out.  Today, he was loving, rubbing all over my legs and allowing me to hold him.  I have to feed him in the tack room because a four pound hen will run him off of his cat food and steal it.

We have four chicks as of today.  I think the other two eggs will not hatch but we'll give them a little more time.  

Quote (à la Cloudia, who always finds great quotes)

"Only those who are asleep make no mistakes."  

-Ingvar Kamprad, founder of IKEA

From the book The 4-Hour Workweek

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Getting older has its advantages, like opening up all sorts of topics I might not have previously discussed.  Assured of aches and pains I felt not in my youth, the goal has changed.  After attaining a certain age, we no longer strive to look good.  Rather, we strive to look not as bad as others our age.   Admit it.  You look at others and say, well, my arms may have a little wing action, and my belly, welll... and my girls are migrating, but by comparison....

I remember my mom saying that aging was hard because while she still got "looks", the age of the guys looking had changed and they were much too old.  In her head, she was still very young.  Lately, I get my mom more.  For example, I was driving down the road with Anna shotgun, William in the back.  Keith Richards was on NPR, and I knew who he and what he was.  I knew the word to the songs.  And as we drove, I felt the youthful surge of the beat and the words, but knew that no longer could, even should I move to that beat, would I ever be "cool" again.

Thank goodness for the recent revival of classic rock, however, because I know the words and can sing to the radio.  William asks incredulously, "Mom, how do you know this song?"

As an aside, I enjoyed Richard's story about how he wrote (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction in his sleep.  More likely, in a drug induced haze.  It is kind of funny though.  And I marveled that the band still wants to play.  The man is 70 years old.   Can a band of 70 somethings attract and audience?  Is a longer life span going to affect our view of age?

William's costume this year

Friday, October 29, 2010

Cluck and Baby

We checked in at 9 p.m. last night and one chick had just emerged from the shell.  So, now there are two!

"'W'sup?"  (Someone has been watching too much Karate Kid (2010).)

Because I have such a lame life, I was watching clips of a show from my childhood, The Flying Nun.  Anna popped into the room and looked over my shoulder.

"Seriously?  People watched that?" she asked.
"Why not?"
"Well, it is so unbelievable that a nun could fly around using her hat!"  (She also complained of the special effects and I can't argue there.)

"Oh," says I.  "Because it is SO much more believable to watch a boy flying around on his magical broomstick chasing a ball with wings."  Score.

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich  Yeah, that's me all right:  the New Rich.  Huh.

Reading on my Kindle:
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (1706-1757)
The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle (Classic Reprint)
The Holy Bible: Revised Standard Version - Burgundy - Second Catholic Edition

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Boy Talk

Overheard:  (three boys, ages 8-9 years old)

"I don't know what it means, but it means a really bad word when you stick up your middle finger."

Friend was asked by her son, one of the three, "Why did God made your third finger bad?"

Overheard, Part II:

"I think he's a boy," said one boy.
"No, she's a girl.  She is wearing [elbow length, orange suede] gloves."
"But look at his [mohawked, partially shaved, dyed orange] hair.  He's a boy."
This went on for a few more observations. 

Finally, a tie breaker was called for.
"Mrs. A____, is that a boy or a girl?"  I looked at the obviously transgendered individual in front of me and weighed how to handle a delicate conversation, particularly with children who were not mine.

"Well," I said cautiously, "judging from the facial hair, I would say that he is a boy."  [Aside:  yes, I know you have an auntie that had to shave regularly, but this was a young person.]  "He just has a different taste in clothing.  Would YOU wear orange suede gloves?" 

The boys giggled.  "Nooooo..."
"Would you wear those white pointed elf shoes?"

I distracted them by asking if they liked the articles of clothing, rather than the whole package.  Thankfully, Anna arrived (we had been waiting for her) and the conversation shifted. 

Obviously, I am not very good at record keeping.  I had the chicks on my calendar as hatching on Saturday.  We found one hatched this morning, another is hatching now.  Either they are precocious or ....well, likely it was me.   Here are some cool photos that show how you can know if an egg is developing. 

It's college application time again.  Yeee-haw.

Proving to my young son that I'm not too old to climb through a small cave.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Finally, You Say

My excuse is that I've been falling apart since my 50th birthday.  Literally.  I am determined to go into old age strong, but it isn't a good sign that you have to feel your VISA card like braille to type the numbers for an online order.

I began having problems shortly after the bird pooped in my ear.   Yes, you read it correctly.  My son and his two friends thought it was hilarious that one of those damn Lorikeets (you'd think I'd learn) sucked up the nectar that costs, per ounce, more than gold, and rewarded me by climbing on to my head.   I have no idea how the timing of his bodily functions and my ear being tilted just so happened, but it did.  For days after, I kid you not, I could feel fluid only in that ear.  I had a photo of this bird on my head (photos add much to a blog, don't they?) but I didn't see the card laying on my computer, and it was cracked when I closed the lid.

A few days later, I began having vision problems.  Having watched too many episodes of the Monsters Inside Me or some such, I visualized exotic Australian lorikeet worms working their way from my ear into my eyeballs. I was not so lucky, as I am sure that would just take a good worming.  Rather, my corneas, made of 6 or 7 layers like all human eyes, have begun to separate.  Hooks hold these layers together and for some reason, long term contact users can one day develop this condition.

The pain hit while I was away from home on a trip to see Lauren at college and celebrate an early Thanksgiving with relatives.  To understand what it felt like, take a bamboo skewer and stick it in your eye.  There, that's it.

Four doctors later, one had the solution: I'll have to give up my silicone.  Not the girls, no, they're all mine. My contacts were of  the highest tech material available, silicone.  I will have to revert to a material I used many, many years ago, but my eyes are now recovered.  Computer work was not comfortable for some time.

Aches and pains were also an issue during this break.  I found that if you carry 40 pounds of used cat litter outside to dump it, and there was a frost the night before, and you try to walk down a hill, the resulting fall can rip your tendons in your shoulders.  The rest of the day I went about like a wooden statue.  This was just a follow-up to the previous day when the miniature horses, headed to their stalls and held only by a lead line, decided to detour to outside of the barn, where again, I encountered the slippery grass.  By the time I got up, ran to shut the front gate as a precaution, they were in their stalls serenely eating their grain.

So, my plans to age gracefully have suffered a slight set back, but I'll go down swinging!  Or at least, I'll go down.

"Cluck" is sitting on six eggs.   At least four and probably five are viable.  Heard a cheep today from inside the egg.  Due on Saturday.

The horses have been "flipped".  This is not like cow tipping.  Rather, they are now outside in the daytime and inside at night, the reverse of the summer schedule.


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