Miz Shoes

Keep On Keepin’ On

Oh, you people think that the only thing I do is watch Project Runway and ANTM, don’t you? Because I have been so very, terribly lax about posting these past couple of months. But you are wrong, wrong, wrong. I do so much more than that. For instance, I surf the internet aimlessly, I knit and ravel (un-knit) and I cook. Some of these things make for a nice synergy along the way.

Take for example, the aimless surfing and the food. When I was but a little shoe, my parents bought me a subscription to the Time/Life Foods of the World series for my birthday present. They were a wonderful introduction to the techniques and flavors of world cuisine. They were full of pictures and narrative and I still have every one of them, albeit a bit sticky, dog-eared and in some cases, a little water damaged. In one of the volumes about America, there was a two page photo spread on apples. I don’t remember what the title was in 1969, but today it would be heirloom apples. They may have been described as antique or lost varieties, or maybe just regional, but there was one apple in that spread that captured my imagination: the Sheepnose apple. It was longer, and somewhat more conical than a Red Delicious. It resembled, in fact, the nose of a sheep. Living in South Florida, there was no option of going around from orchard to orchard until I found one. Even today, with heirloom foods a major foodie trend, and boutique green grocers popping up, I have never seen a Sheepnose. BUT! In my aimless wanderings around the interwebs a couple of weeks ago, I Googled “Sheepnose apple” looking for pictures. Instead, I found Apple Source, a little, family-run business that sells varietal apples and ships them anywhere in the US. The lovely lady owner convinced me that I really didn’t want to eat a Sheepnose, because they are a fruit which is better in theory than in practice. She allowed as how one could find a really great Sheepnose, but only rarely, and then they don’t keep or travel so the only way to really and truly enjoy one would be to find an orchard having a good season, pick it and eat it right there. Sigh. But I did order a box of mixed heirlooms and the RLA and I have been doling them out like treasured jewels. And I ordered a box for the GirlCousin. And another for the David Lee Roth clone that is my brother-in-law. And now that the season has gone on and the varieties are changing, I may order another box for me.

Real apples. The smell alone is enough to make one swoon. The variety of tastes, and textures and colors is mind blowing. They are tart and sweet and tangy. The skins are rough (russets) or smooth. They are green with a rose colored blush, dark red, pale cardinal, yellow and green. Some of them are crunchy and others more mealy. None of them have been anything less than delicious. The RLA, who grew up in

Frostbite Falls

Rochester, New York tells me that this has unleashed memories by the bushel. So go visit Jill and order yourself some apples. You’ll thank me.

The raveling and interwebs have intersected here at Ravelry.com. Ravel and unravel, like flammable and inflammable would seem to be opposites, but are actually synonymous. Anyway, you need to sign up for Ravelry (sounds like revelry, not to be confused with reveille) before you can get sucked in to the endless delights for yarn junkies. I have never seen a greater (in every sense of the word) time suck than Ravelry. I have entered my knitting needles and crochet hooks into a data base. Why? I can look over at the jar on my desk and see what I have. I’ve uploaded photos of my knitting, I’ve created a library of my reference books, even though they are on a shelf to my right (see WHY? above). I’m surfing patterns and yarns and looking for yarn junkie friends and looking at other people’s stashes. Yeah. I know. It’s yarn porn.

But there it is, and here I am, stuck to my laptop like a leech.

And then there is my love/hate relationship with “Tin Man”. And the never-ending garage sale plans. And a few bits of sewing that have yet to be finished, and did I mention that I’m heading to Disney World at the end of the week? Must commune with the mouse. More later, I think my boss has noticed I’m blogging and not working…

Miz Shoes

I Do The Rock, Myself

Last night I watched the great, Oscar-winning actor and total hottie, Kevin Kline in the 1986 version of The Pirates of Penzance. This is unfortunate, because I realized, as I watched him camp around singing his intro number I Am a Pirate King that this is the tune stolen to be Popeye’s theme. I now have a mash up of the two rocketing around in my head. To make matters worse, this ear worm has taken over the space in my brain previously occupied by Tim Curry’s novelty hit I Do the Rock, which showed up in i-pod rotation and stuck in my head for a week. I can honestly say that I’d rather be possessed by Tim than Popeye. Kevin only supplies the visuals in this, and even the memory of him in black tights, thigh high boots and a poofy white shirt cannot erase the pain of a mental loop caused by Popeye the Sailor King.

Miz Shoes

All Revved Up With No Place To Go

The other night, I woke up at midnight (gone to bed at 8 with this stupid lung infection) and couldn’t go back to sleep. The RLA was in the living room, watching “Meat Loaf: To Hell & Back” on VH1. While it wasn’t dreadful, it wasn’t good, per se. The guy who played Jim Steinman  reminded me a lot of the actor who plays Lucious Malfoy in the Potter series*, and one thing leading, as it so often does with me, to another, I ended up on the IMDB looking for both.

Which, of course, this being the web, led me happily from site to site until I ended up at Jim Steinman’s blog. YESH! He has a blog.

Which led to another half an hour of poking into various links and sub-sites and sub-sub-sites.

(Fade to Black)


It was long ago and it was far away, and I was living in New York City. I had a friend, of sorts, an actor by the name of Richard Dunne, who had starred in the Miami road production of EQUUS. I went to see his band play at some dive in the Village and he was all excited because he had auditioned for something exciting…a musical based on Peter Pan.

(Dissolve to present)

I never really saw Richard after that, and never heard what happened with that play. Over the years, whenever Meat Loaf made yet another return to the music scene, there would be a story about Jim Steinman, and maybe 10-12 years ago I think I heard something about a musical he had done back in the 70s about Peter Pan. I remember thinking then that that had probably been what Richard had been so worked up about.

Today, in all the digging, somewhere in the Steinman site, is a scan of the original program from the Kennedy Center production of “Neverland” and starring in the role of Baal (the Peter Pan character) was Richard Dunne. And there are even photos.

Huh. Sometimes these interwebs are amazing things, are they not?

* Zachary Throne is definitely hotter than Jason Isaacs, though when placed side by side.


Miz Shoes

POP! Goes My Heart

I have a dirty little secret that I feel compelled to share with you all.

I have a soft spot for romantic comedies (films). I have an especially soft spot for Hugh Grant. I love Hugh Grant. I also adore Drew Barrymore, and will watch any romantic comedy she makes. The RLA and I just watched “Words and Music” and we both loved it.

Does that make us shallow?


Miz Shoes

Many Things Remind Me of Many Things

The other night, the RLA*, the ADS** and I were walking our dogs, and one thing led to another and we ended up talking about tv cowboys and their horses.

Roy Rogers rode Trigger. Dale Evans rode Buttermilk. Buttermilk was a palomino, and so was Trigger. Except I couldn’t remember what Trigger looked like. I could only remember Buttermilk.

The Lone Ranger rode Silver, who was a white horse, or since it was old black and white tv, maybe a light dapple grey. Tonto rode Scout, and Scout was… a pinto? An appaloosa?

Fury was black. Bret Maverick rode a black horse, but did the horse have a name? Bat Masterson only rode in stagecoaches, that I can recall.

The boys on the Ponderosa? Can’t remember any of their horses, although I watched the show every Sunday night. Did one of them ride a buckskin? Did Little Joe ride a paint?

In other odds and ends, I just bought a new domain name. Reecie, of the Mild, Mild West let her domain expire, and in double checking to be sure it really did, the following phrase popped up as a related search “mild burning symptoms”. How that relates to Mild, Mild West is something only a computer knows. But it cracked me up. So much so that I am now the proud owner of mild

What do you think the content of that site should be? A wiki of Paris Hilton bashing? The place I write the stuff that’s too rude for here?***

Just a page that asks the question “what the fuck are you looking for here?”

I don’t know. I only know that it makes me laugh. Mild Burning Symptoms. Schnort. I have a whole line of t-shirts planned to go along with the “I’d Rather Be Widowed” shirt, and they are all rather snarky, so maybe this should be the name of my clothing line?

What else? I have nothing planned for the weekend, but my toe is good enough to stand on, so maybe it will be a long two days of sewing. Purses for the etsy shop. A couple of dresses for moi. Design and upload the art for the rest of my t-shirts.

A long, and productive weekend. What a concept.

* The Renowned Local Artist

** The Artist Down the Street

*** Is there such a thing?

Miz Shoes

If You See Her, Say Hello

So many thoughts on so many subjects.

Item the first: Something has been bothering me about ANTM since Wednesday night. Jaslene didn’t pass the psych test last season, and that’s why she wasn’t on, but she went to therapy and tried out again. Uh, maybe I read Sun Tzu, Musashi and Machievelli too many times* but if you’re giving these hamsters psych tests, then you (meaning the producers et al) have a pretty good idea how they are going to decompensate during the series. This means that they ARE casting for the psycho bitch (NeNe Vibrato), the crying girl (Brittney), the gently bewildered (Natasha and Kathleen) and all the other stereotypes we know, love and have come to expect. Creepy or no?

Item the second: I keep having dreams about my old college chum Pati. I went so far as to look her up on various people-finders and she may or may not be living a couple miles down the road. The last I’d heard, she was living in Georgia with her parents.

Pati was bi-polar, and never diagnosed, until later in life, like when we were in our mid-twenties and by then, she was happy with being bi-polar and didn’t want to/simply didn’t take her meds. I loved being around her when she was manic, but she got vicious when she was depressed. We quit being friends when I was going through my divorce and she was in a down cycle and it didn’t work too well, friendshipwise.

I’d love to see her again, but I’m afraid to call. Yes or no?

Item the third: I’ve come to realize that I am a tad borderline bi-polar myownself. Maybe not. Maybe I’m just prone to severe mood swings. You know, like suicidal downs and Top of the World, Ma ups.

I’ve been on Prozac for years, and while it shaves the peaks and valleys, the ups and downs are still there. I just don’t crawl in the closet, turn off the lights and curl up in the fetal position anymore.

But. I don’t know quite how to express this, the ups are still hard to manage. I am currently in the middle of one that, were I not on meds, would be dangerous. I am so full of creative energy, and have so many ideas that I want to pursue, that I don’t know where to begin.

Because I’m on the drugs, I can almost prioritize and get things done, but in my bones, I feel the fire and the spin. This would be a very bad cycle, were I not damped down.

Pati hated the damping down, and that’s why she wouldn’t take her meds. Because I’m in this part of the cycle, I think that’s why I want to make contact with her again. But that would be bad, maybe. Fuel to the fire, maybe. Or she might just hang up on me, still pissed off or whatever.

I don’t know. I’m writing. I’m designing t-shirts. I’m entering photos in contests. I’ve got a pile of fabric on my sewing table, and another pile of patterns and a project list that I want to finish by tomorrow night.

The energy blast is good, but I know that there will be a crash after. Maybe this is the bounce back from the depression I was in for two months prior to this, though. Maybe I need to up my meds. Maybe I just need a vacation.

In any event, I have work that I set for myself today, so you’ll excuse me if I leave you now.

*OK, I only read “The Prince” once, and maybe not even all the way through, but I got the gist of it.


Miz Shoes

You Got A Lot of Nerve

An astute new (and presumably very young) reader accosted me in my comments this morning with the following question, which I quote in its entirety, and exactly as she typed it (in all caps, shouting at me first thing in the morning… sigh)


First of all, sweetiedarling, the correct abbreviation for which you are searching, is ETC, as in etcetera. Not ecksettra, or however you are pronouncing it in your head.

Secondly, what gives me the right to judge people is this: I am the self-appointed arbiter of taste for the universe and it would be a much more attractive place if people would just take my advice.

Thirdly, what gives me the right to be arbiter of taste for the universe is that I have exquisite taste, and if I ever did make a fashion mistake, there is no film hanging around to prove it.

Finally, regarding your final statement, the one in which you opine about the frequency of my sex life versus the number of pairs of shoes you own… what, exactly, was the point you were attempting to make? I came of age in the 70s, child, and I’ve been married to the Hottie Renowned Local Artist for 15 years, so I hope you have a spare room or two to house all those pairs of shoes you claim to own. And I hope you keep them all polished, stored neatly in boxes, with tissue stuffed in the toes to keep their shape. I also hope that you make sure the heels are always in good repair.



Miz Shoes

I Want to Shoot the Whole Day Down

I used to have an assistant who was useless. No, she was beyond useless, and a back-stabbing idiot. She would constantly come to me to complain about her computer: “It doesn’t want to do exwhyzee,” she would whine. “I told it to do exwhyzee and it won’t, it insists on doing efgeeaitch.”

I would suck in air, count to thirty in a language I don’t speak, and tell her, “No. Your computer is not a sentient being. It neither wants nor does not want to do anything. It can only do what you tell it to do, so the mistake must be a user error. Show me exactly what you tried.”

And then she would, and I would point out that she had/hadn’t held down a specific key, or had her caps lock on, or she had typed a word backwards, or some other stupid mistake and she’d glare at me and talk trash behind my back. But that’s not why I bring her up. No, I am reminded of her today because all mechanical things around me are breaking down.

She was a real whiz at astrology (of course) and she would have said that Mercury went retrograde, or Uranus was in my house of blahblahblah.

But the fact is, I got the lap top back on Monday, and by Saturday it was turning itself off, again. So now, the lap top in on its way to Cupertino, and I’m freaking out. I’m also down $500 dollars, because repairs are a minimum of $300 and I had to buy an external hard drive to back up everything before I sent the machine away.

This morning I woke up to a white koi pond. White with coral and calcium silt, and my pond pump is screwed, and I am sitting at home waiting for the pump guys to come and a) take the old pump away and b) sell me a new one and c) install the new one so that I can flush the pond and make sure that my five 25-pound koi are not dead on the bottom, since I can’t see through the water to check. Nobody seems to be floating belly up, so we’re good so far.

But I’m sitting at home, not at my work desk, and the boss is back from two weeks on the road and he’s pissed that I’m not there today. Not to mention that I missed something while he was gone that I was supposed to be on top of and wasn’t.



Miz Shoes

I’m Still Standing

Sorry about the big gap in witty entries, here, but you know? Sometimes even I can’t find life amusing.

And I have been working on something special for you all, really I have. My little scanner and I have been very busy with this project.

It started two weekends ago, when I went north to the home territories for my Auntie Em’s birthday. The RLA and I planned to go up for her party, and come straight home, not getting sucked in to working on the parental units’  home dismantling project. But then my brother came by and poked around in a cabinet in the garage that I hadn’t gotten to yet and he discovered a major lode of vintage photos of family members we had never seen. Both the family members and the photos. Neither were ever mentioned. Of course, that set off a new push in the genealogy*.

But he also found three large boxes of other stuff. My childhood stuff, to be precise. My Barbies. My lavender Ken doll case. Watch for that bad boy on E-bay. And two things which I thought had been lost forever in the mists of time and parental tossing of childhood crap, and another two things which I have no idea why they were even or ever saved.

Item 1: A twenty-foot chain of chewing gum wrappers (why?)

Item 2: A small box of Creepy Crawlers, made one vacation when the Sistergirlfriendgirl got a Creepy Crawler maker for Christmas. I had a lovely color sense even then, let me tell you. The black newt with the red tail is very nice, and so is the yellow and lime green caterpillar.

Item 3: My collection of Beatles trading cards. Almost a complete set of Series 3 (black and white). Memory does not play me false, as I have more John Lennon pictures than anyone else, so I wasn’t impressed with Sir Paul-The-Cute-One even at the age of 10. Although this discovery got me excited, a quick perusal of E-Bay reveals that this is one more Boomer toy that is more valuable in theory than in practice. Guess I’ll be keeping those.

It is Item 4 which turned my world upside down. I thought this object lost forever. I had searched for it for years. There is only one other thing I could find in the house which would make me as elated by its discovery: and that is the drawing of “My Father’s Store” that I did when maybe 7 years old and which features the shoe window (every pair different and includes a pair of bunny slippers) and a view of my father through the doors (where he is fitting a pair of shoes)**

No. What I found, and what I have been scanning in for the greater edification of my readers, is a small box that originally contained coconut patties. I didn’t and don’t much like coconut patties, but my Great Uncle Nat did, and he gave this particular box to my mother when we went to Europe in 1966. I may have mentioned that trip before?***

What the box contains now, and what it held all during that Grand Tour was my special collection of European souvenirs. What I chose to collect, and why, has been the subject of debate around the office since my discovery. My boss, and the PDB both consider this to be a major marker of my mental instability and innate peculiarities (Hello?? Mr. Pot, I’d like you to meet Mr. Kettle). OK, OK, so get to the point already, right? What was it that I collected that long ago summer when I was 11?

Toilet paper.

I had never seen anything quite like the variety and quality of European toilet paper, and I knew that none of my friends would believe me when I told them that on a Swiss train, the paper was hot pink/magenta and as thick and textured as a paper towel. Or that in a French hotel (a four-star hotel, no less) the toilet paper was pre-cut into little squares and the paper itself was thin, stiff and crinkly like tracing paper, or waxed on one side… No wonder the French are always pissed off about something.

So I collected samples, labeled them assiduously and saved them in that little coconut pattie box. They were a hit with all my friends. I haven’t seen that box in 20 years at least, and lamented its loss every time I thought about it.

I’ve been scanning them in, and will post them soon, I promise.

* The Rubes. From Yonkers. They were my maternal Grandmother’s family. Also cousins/uncles to my maternal Grandfather. Somehow. I think through his mother. Is it any wonder that certain members of my family have 6 toes?

**Shoes. Go figure.

*** Yeah, like one or two HUNDRED times.

Miz Shoes

Marketing 101

So. I’m a blonde, although here at the second half of my life, it is more of a rodential sort of brown, liberally salted with white? grey? transparent? Whatever. Anyway. I’m a blonde, and sometimes I act like one.

Take for instance the other night when I was reviewing my credit card bill. There were two very large charges to . I tried to review the purchases, but there were no details. I drew a total blank. I knew that I had bought no new hardware, no new software from Apple. And there were two charges made on consecutive days. I was stumped. It had to be credit card theft, right?

I went on-line to my credit card company and challenged the charges. Done and done. When the RLA came back from walking the dogs, I told him about the mysterious charges and he looked at me like I had grown a third head.

What do you mean, you don’t recognize the charges? DUH. It’s the calendars and books you made for everyone’s holiday gifts. Almost $800 worth of calendars and books.

Yesterday morning, bright and early, I called the credit card company. They had already credited my account the full amount and had closed the file. (Let’s give credit—HAH—where credit is due: American Express.) As far as they were concerned, the matter was over. I said it was fraudulent, they believed me. Done and done. If I needed to pay Apple, Apple would have to re-bill me; I need to call them.

So I did. And I apologized for being a ditz. And I told them that I needed to pay them, but AmEx couldn’t reinstate the charge, and what do we do now?

Apple support escalated me through a few levels of customer service, and then got my e-mail, so they could send me instructions for payment. But they didn’t. What they sent me was a thank you note for being a loyal customer. And told me to keep my order, free of charge.

There’s an old adage in marketing that an unhappy customer will tell seven people about a bad experience, but a happy customer will only tell one, maybe two.

I’m over the moon happy, and I want as many people as I can tell to hear the story of what customer service is supposed to be. Both from American Express (you said you didn’t make that charge and that’s enough for us, here’s your money back) and Apple. I don’t even know WHY Apple made that decision. Maybe it was because of . Maybe they looked up my account saw that I’ve been a loyal customer since 1988. Maybe it was just . Maybe I was the one millionth customer. Maybe it is just that Apple is the best company in the world.

What ever. I know that today, I’m proud to be a stockholder and a former employee. , you are my idol.

Miz Shoes

Everything I Do Leads Me Back To You

When I quoted Yoko, I promised that there would be more to come, more things I’ve read that have influenced me, and here it one of the most important. I first read the passage below in a Survey of English Literature, Renaissance to the Present, in 1973. My professor was Ronald Newman (It’s been 35 years, and I still remember his name). He was wonderful, in and of himself, but he made even the dullest of the dead white men fascinating.

But this? This changed my life. Every few years, I go back and read it again, just to make sure I haven’t forgotten anything, to make sure I am still living in the now.

It was one hundred years old when I read it, and in its day was condemned for corrupting a generation of British youth (including and especially Oscar Wilde).


Miz Shoes

Christmas Rapping

I grew up in a Very Small Town in the south of Florida. My (extended) family was the entire Jewish population of said small town, and had my grandparent's house burned down in about 1956, the entire shtetl would have been eliminated, since we all lived in that same house.

Christmas time would come, and we would decorate our store (AFTER Thanksgiving, thankewverymuch) for same. We would drive down to Miami to the display wholesaler and pick up garlands, and bells and snowflakes and order our supplies of wrapping paper and ribbons. (Actually, this would happen way before Thanksgiving, the ordering and shopping for decorations.)

By Thanksgiving, my GirlCousin and I were making boxes, and curling ribbons, in preparation for the Christmas rush. Boxes. Hundreds and hundreds of shirt boxes and dress boxes and thousands of curled ribbon balls, neatly ordered like green and red checkerboards inside the tops of said boxes. All of them neatly stored under the display counters. The wrapping table would get set up. We would race each other to see who could wrap a box faster, tighter, and with the least number of pieces of tape. I think the record was 3 pieces of tape and under 30 seconds. Everyone in the store answered the phone by saying "Merry Christmas, Stuart Department Store."

My parents would pile my brother and me into the car and we would drive around town to look at the Christmas lights in other people's yards. Nothing says Christmas like a lit-up coconut palm, and don't try to tell me different. One good hard frost and the oranges would sweeten up on the trees, too.

For some reason, however, my whole life, my Christian friends thought that I "had no Christmas" and took it upon themselves to give me one. I have probably decorated as many or more Christmas trees than any Southern Baptist. I would get an invitation to one friend's home and then another. Come for eggnog and decorating the tree! Come for hot cocoa and tree decorating! Come and help us put up the tree! OK. Sure.

The Sistergirlfriendgirl and her family had Tiggywinkle ornaments. Those were the little hedgehogs from Beatrix Potter books. I LOVED the Tiggywinkles. Flash's family had delicate old glass balls from her grandparents. Another friend made popcorn strings. One year when I lived in New York, Bean and her mom decided that decorating the tree wasn't enough Christmas for a nice Jewish girl, and they took me out in a snowstorm to pick their tree out from a lot on Sixth Avenue, and then Bean and I then had to drag the damn monster all the way across the Village to their WestBeth apartment. Brilliant. One of my favorite Christmases, ever.

On Christmas Day, I always made sure that I had an invitation to the most Southern of my Southern friends' homes, because that meant a slice of left-over ham, pan fried and served up with red-eye gravy and grits with enough butter and tobasco sauce to choke the original pig. Or me. Yummmy. Red eye gravy.

Those are great memories. Thank the baby Jesus that nobody had become so brow-beaten into political correctness that I didn't get to have them. I was not, and my parents were not, hell, even my GRANDPARENTS were not offended that I was asked to be part of someone's Christmas celebration. Nobody thought that my friends were trying to convert me. Especially since I returned the favor by teaching them the freakin' dreidle song, and handing out chocolate Chanukkah gelt.

There was no breast-beating and fretting over whether or not we should say Merry Christmas to our customers. Well, in all honesty, probably because we knew for certain that we were the only Jews in town and so a Merry Christmas would not be unwelcome, but also because in those dark days, it was considered polite to express recognition of another's beliefs rather than trying to pretend that we all worship the same nebulous concept of holiness in some non-specific way that could offend nobody and everybody.

I am growing tired of political correctness, can you tell? I think we need a new definition of it. I think that political correctness should be me telling my Christian friends Happy Channukah and them telling me Merry Christmas and we all smile and say "YESH!" Does it matter? The bottom line is that we are wishing each other peace and joy.

Namaste. The god in me recognizes the god in you. We are all one. Merry Christmas to all, unless you prefer Happy Channukah. Or a bountiful Kwaanza. Or whatever.

Miz Shoes

Tagged by a Meme, Dammit

Oh, you all know that sometimes, just sometimes, I'm a sucker for a meme. When it has to do with art or books or music, I'm only too happy to play along. So. From Miss Bliss to me and then to five of you:

1. One book that changed your life: Walter Pater's Conclusion to the Renaissance

2. One book that you’ve read more than once: The Bushwhacked Piano

3.One book you’d want on a desert island: The Baroque Cycle

4. One book that made you laugh: The Joyous Season

5. One book that made you cry: The Once & Future King

6. One book that you wish had been written: Oh No, Ho; You Are NOT Doing That In Public

7. One book that you wish had never been written: The Celestine Prophecy (Truly, Deeply, Awful)

8. One book you’re currently reading: Hacking Moveable Type (pathetic, isn't it?)

9. One book you’ve been meaning to read: The Complete Diaries of Samuel Pepys

10. Now tag five people: RJ, Mild Child, Jade, Marceeah, Larry
Miz Shoes

Crash on the Levee

The one thing that makes this storm suck more than the usual suckiness of hurricane/tropical storm watch and waits is that Ernesto is coming on shore on the one year anniversary of the cluster fuck that was Hurricane Katrina.

So instead of giving us the skinny on what's boiling up in the straights and making it's way toward South Florida, the all the weather, all the time station is showing us historical footage of that other national nightmare and all the memorials and "celebrations" of the date. Thanks, but I think we all still remember.

Anyway, even though the poobahs at the top of the corporate food chain decided that the head office should be open and operational today, I called my boss at about 6:20 AM and told him I'd be battening down the homestead, and to press on regardless and without me.

We finished the shuttering at about 11 this morning, and I am now cooking a turkey breast, just in case the power goes out later.

But, being a native of this fair state, I have certain things in place that others, more recently moved to the lower latitudes, may not have. To wit: I have only manual can, wine and bottle openers. I have a gas stove, somewhat rare in these parts. I have a French press coffee maker, which means I can boil water on the old gas stove, and pour it into a non-electric pot and have fresh, very rich coffee. I have a treadle sewing machine in good working order, for those boring hours when the power is out. I have a collection of jigsaw puzzles.

In short, I have the means to cook and entertain myself, even when there is nothing to do but listen to the wind outside.

Later, gentle readers.
Miz Shoes

Got Up, Got Out of Bed

I'm sitting at the dining room table, where I have my morning coffee and crossword puzzle. I also have a wireless connection, so I'm checking e-mail and updating my blog. That's efficient use of time and multi-tasking, you tasteless hos who put your make-up on during the train ride to work. So you may ask, what does Miz Shoes do on her train ride, other than take pictures of said hos?

Miz Shoes has read all several million words (in translation, please, I only wish my French was that good) of Proust's "Remembrances of Things Past." I have also read any number of other books, done any number of New York Times crosswords (in ink, thankyewverymuch), written hundreds upon hundreds of pages in my real journals, knitted several sweaters and handbags, and done miles and miles of hand applique. Miz Shoes has also listened to her i-pod, with ear phones that do not leak her questionable choices in music to the surrounding train car. She has been known, however, to snap her fingers and tap her feet. The horror!

Again I say to you: That is an efficient use of time. Also very civilized.

Miz Shoes would like to thank all of you who sent your good thoughts to the most excellent David Lee Cohen, he is doing much better and should be home by next week. No. I will not discuss with you all what and why he is in the hospital. It was not bariatric surgery, hair transplants, or any other form of self enhancements. That is all I'll say.

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