Wednesday, June 30, 2010

POTD

My cute little cuddly kitten. She loves to snuggle up in the blanket with me (or without me).

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Oh how my garden grows


Jalapeno flower



Tomato-YUM


Banana Peppers


Bell Peppers


Basil


Cucumber


Loofah


Lavender-one of my fav smells

Lavender flower


A lil cucumber forming


Rosemary


Sage


MINT!!
More mint=mojitos in my future!


Thyme-it's so tiny and pathetic


Cinnamon Basil

On the fail list so far this year: Catnip, have no idea why I can't get it to grow, it grew like CRAZY last year. Oregano, it was on fail list last year too. Tarragon, still alive but just a green stalk at this point, no leaves. Strawberries, also still alive but the berries are disgusting.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A little Mahut anecdote

Years before Nicolas Mahut's marathon match against John Isner at Wimbledon 2010 I had a soft spot for the guy and felt for him. A friend had a little run in with Nicolas Mahut during the tournament in Indian Wells CA in 2007.

The first Friday night of the tournament, we had a few drinks before having dinner at the hotel restaurant. It was prime rib buffet night at the restaurant so we got right to eating. We were eating and talking and seeing what players were around also enjoying the bufffet. Most if not all the Frenchies were in the back area and there were a few other players and coaches spreckled around the place. N and L went to the buffet together, I saw them getting some salad and then they disappeared around a corner I couldn't see from the table. L comes back with an odd look on her face and walking kinda fast and shaking her head. Apparently Mahut was at the buffet at the same time as them and N started talking to him. Before N could get more than 2 words out L looked at Mahut, who already looked like a deer in headlights apparently, and said something like, "Walk away, just walk away it's ok." He didn't listen.

So what is the first things out of N's mouth to Mahut, "I'm old enough to be your grandmother."

That was when L left, it was at least 30 seconds before N finally came back to the table so who knows what else poor Mahut was subjected to. He really should have listened to L and walked away but he's just too nice of a guy.

Let's talk about what we know N said to Mahut. "I'm old enough to be your grandmother."

1. Who in their right mind (we knew WAY before this that N was not and has never been in her right mind, ESPECIALLY when she's had a drink or two) says that to a nice young man. Seriously what did she expect the response to be or where did she expect that to get her, it's just one of those things you don't say.
2. IT'S NOT EVEN TRUE! I didn't do the math but it's definitely not likely and would be quite a set of circumstances to make it happen, if it's even is possible. N's daughter is ten years YOUNGER than Mahut.

Our table was on the way out of the restaurant. I could see Mahut and the rest of the Frenchies walking towards our table on the way out. If I remember correctly Mahut was trying to hide behind some of the other guys and gave our table as wide a berth as he could because he saw that N was at the table. I think he even tried to use a side exit but wasn't successful.

From that night on I always felt bad for the guy and have a special soft spot for him. Who knows what else crazy N said to him. We haven't seen much of him since then especially at Indian Wells but boy did he make quite a jump into the spotlight this year. So that's my little Mahut anecdote hope you find it as funny as we do. There's a reason we keep crazy N around and a reason why we call her La Loca too, haha.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Is this a light bulb joke variation?

From a post on Grist.org:

“BP notes the fall in its share price in US trading last night. The company is not aware of any reason which justifies this share price movement.”

Really?

I read somewhere, can't find it now, that BP's reason for not taking the FREE oil soaking natural fiber booms from Matter of Trust is because they are worried about debris that may be left behind/get loose from the booms.

Really? They are worried about what is mostly hair floating in the ocean and the impact that would have, I'm sorry but you've got to be fucking kidding me right. Even if that is the case and it is a sound case they cannot find a better way to explain it.

A quote from Matter of Trust's site re debris from their booms vs the booms BP is currently using:

Riki Ott PhD, Marine Toxicologist, Author and Exxon Valdez Oil Spill expert - "The oil industry's approach is to use oil based synthetic products to respond to oil spills. After use, this results in mountains of contaminated material that need to be landfilled or incinerated. This creates a secondary pollution problem. At least with hair booms and hair mats, natural material is used that breaks down faster and releases less toxins when incinerated or landfilled. They even have a chance at being composted with bacteria. To suggest that any possible shedding of natural fibers into the gulf are a problem, pales in comparison to methods using hundreds of thousands of gallons of toxic industrial solvents. The benefits of removing oil waste with natural fibers largely outweighs the minimal immediate risk to the environment. Also they reduce the secondary pollution concerns that come with using oil based products, such as only synthetic boom and dispersants."

Again really, the company responsible for the oil disaster in the Gulf is going to cite debris in the ocean. The company that probably makes money off the manufacturing of these synthetic booms because they are made from oil. The company that has been using an oil dispersant is going to cite debris from natural fiber booms. Really?

Here is a bit on the chemical dispersant from an article on ProPublica.org

“There is a chemical toxicity to the dispersant compound that in many ways is worse than oil,” said Richard Charter, a foremost expert on marine biology and oil spills who is a senior policy advisor for Marine Programs for Defenders of Wildlife and is chairman of the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. “It’s a trade-off – you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t -- of trying to minimize the damage coming to shore, but in so doing you may be more seriously damaging the ecosystem offshore.”

Is this a "How many people does it take to change a light bulb" joke happening in real life? Seriously I don't understand why BP is still the one in charge of "taking care" of the Gulf disaster. How many times does one need to prove themselves stupid, incapable, incompetent, unorganized, out of the loop, unreasonable, etc. before someone (government) steps in and takes control of or at least demand to take part in trying to manage the Gulf disaster.

Why are people so afraid/incapable of placing blame? I heard someone ask another person who just pulled out of a BP station why they still give their money to them? Their response, it was an accident! Yes it was an accident and it's not like they did it on purpose, I appreciate that, but in our society you are still held responsible for your actions accident or not, just because it is and accident doesn't make it a get out of jail free card, or it shouldn't be at least because I do realize that a lot of times it is.

Is their total and utter inability to deal with the disaster an accident, no it's negligence. We are required to carry car insurance, in CA at least not sure if that is a nationwide law, in case we are in an accident so we can at least try and financially compensate for the accident we've had. There is blame to be laid and it's on BP and it's even on each and everyone of us, in a way, and our massive dependence on oil.

Yeah it's hard to get away from it and there is no way we, at this point, can just stop using it but there are a lot of relatively easy ways you can cut back. So many of the products we choose to use everyday are petroleum based or contain petroleum. There is probably some in every single room of your home. A lot of them just aren't necessary even though you may think they are. You really want to use a facial/body lotion with petroleum in it, really?


The Daily Green has another article on 60 surprising products made from oil, along with a link, at the bottom of the page, to a list of 144 products.

If you think it's impossible for you to do anything to reduce your dependence on oil, or in regards to anything for that matter, it's not and never is. Every choice you make has an effect, even if it is just making yourself feel like you're doing something. It's not impossible to make a difference even if it is just in your own home. I really liked the recent mnmlist's post on "I could never give up".

Even though at this point BP is refusing the booms made by Matter of Trust they are still taking donations of hair, fleece, and nylons. I sent them a paper lunch sack full of mine and Rich's hair clippings that I had been collecting for the past year. I knew about Matter of Trusts use of hair to make oil soaking mats and booms way before the Gulf disaster. At that time they didn't have extra warehouse space, after the disaster they were donated many warehouses in Gulf states and have been accepting and making booms since the early days of the disasters. Although BP refuses them Matter of Trust is making booms available to local municipalities for use on their shores.

Update: Just came across this article at Your Daily Thread about Getting Unnecessary Oil out of Your Life. Short and simple but easy things to think about changing.

Update: I'll be adding related links as I come across them so if this is something that interests you and wanna see what I'm finding interesting check back on this post every now and again.


Added 6/14


Added 6/15



Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Book Review: Stay by Allie Larkin

Let's cut to the chase, read Stay by Allie Larkin you won't be disappointed.

Stay Book Trailer


Allie is a blog/twitter friend, Stay hits shelves Thursday June 10th, as part of the promotion for the book she is doing a blog tour. She offered me the opportunity to host a stop on this blog tour, I of course jumped at the opportunity. Joe, the dog in Stay was inspired by Allie's own german shepard, Argo. So much so that Argo is the dog featured on the cover of Stay. That fact alone made me want to read the book.

I was sent an advanced free signed copy of Stay and was so excited to start reading it. I was hooked after reading the prologue, seriously, that page and a half itself made me really want to know more about the main character, Van. Once I got into the book I couldn't put it down, literally, I normally read a bit before going to bed every night and usually get a chapter or two read before my eyelids get heavy and I have to put the book down. With Stay I picked it up one night at ten, curled up in bed with a mug of tea, at 5 am I was done, I never got tired and I could find a place to stop reading, I had to know what happened next. Throughout the night I laughed and I cried along with and for the characters in the book.

Allie has created a set of characters and situations that draw you in and make you love them. Her voice is so honest and straightforward even if you've never been in a similar situation you feel like you have after reading it. She writes real life like it is which makes reading her book an enjoyable adventure and pleasure.

What I didn't like about the book was that it ended. I know it can't go on forever but I can't wait to see what else Allie has for us to read in the future, what new characters and adventures we will be enthralled with.

For more information about Stay visit AllieLarkinwrites.com the site includes an excerpt, audio clip, reading group guide, and question and answers with Allie.

I leave you with these adorable pictures of Allie and her dog Argo, how could you not want to read the book written/inspired by these two.







Saturday, June 5, 2010

Where it all went awry

I'm not what society calls "normal", I don't even know what that means or why one would want to be "normal". While at work the other day my mind started to wander as I got to the "routine" part of my day. I thought, "I think I know when things went awry."

I believe it could have been my childhood over identification with Pippi Longstocking. It must have been my 11th birthday if I am doing my math correctly, which I am probably not because me and math are like oil and water. That summer The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking came out and for my birthday I went to the movies with friends and then had a party.

I share her love of animals and like her I don't necessarily conform to preconceived notions. I don't have super strength like of course but also like her I would not, and still do not, hesitate to jump into a body of water fully clothed even in my best clothes, although now I wouldn't jump in with any of my fave shoes on, you don't mess with a girl and her shoes. ;)

As I've gone into here before I am not obsessed with cleanliness and I always thought of Pippi being the same way, we aren't walking around looking like Pigpen from Peanuts but that's because we're girls and it's cute when girls have a bit of mud smeared on their clothes and/or face. I would have given anything to live in a house with a monkey and a horse. Being older and having actually worked with a few different monkeys I've changed my mind on that one, they are just too damn smart and test you, although I do know a monkey (Gepetto) that loves his human mommy (Jess) and would love to have a relationship like that with one.

To this day I still love horses though. My uncle had a horse that wasn't ridden very often but I didn't hesitate to get on it bareback even on a few occasions. On a family trip to Yosemite me and my dad went on a horse back tour. When we got within sight of the stables my horse took off and I just went for a long bumpy ride all the way back to the stables. A guide was quick to follow me to try and get the horse to stop and make sure I didn't panic, I did quite the opposite. He apologized to my dad for the incident and was amazed I took it so well, I didn't just take it well I quite enjoyed it. It was the highlight of the tour for me, only thing I remember about it actually.

After contemplating all this I texted my mom and said I know where you went wrong (poor choice of words) and told her it was because of her allowing me (again poor choice of words) to over identify with Pippi Longstocking. She got back to me and said, "oh nice blame it on me." I really should have worded my text better. I got back to her and said well I guess I could have identified with Stawberry Shortcake, gotten obese and had friends all named after desserts. We had a laugh.

What other characters was a little red headed girl suppose to identify with? I never liked Annie much , think it was the way she was treated and while the story had a happy ending I didn't identify with her at all. I'm glad I chose Pippi. Even to this day I wouldn't mind being Pippi.