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Looking Young

Over the years Pongo’s black spots became grey.  The mollies all gradually change their colors, with gold and black and white all shifting back and forth, and one even recently showing a bit of turquoise.  Looking through some old photos this morning though I noticed that Diego, the ultimate white fluffy puppy, still looks pretty much the same as the day we brought him home, four and a half years ago.  He’s almost six years old and still has the same coloring as that day back in 2008.  I’m so jealous.

Chuck posted this on Friday, October 26, 2012 at  7:54 am.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Nine Years Glowing

Nine years ago today I was strapped in the stirrups and nuked.  There’s still no sign of the cancer recurring, and life is good.  Thinking the ten year mark would be a good time for a party.  Maybe a little beach party pilgrimage for the seeds to San Onofre with lots of glow sticks for everyone.  Gonna have to work on that.

Chuck posted this on Saturday, October 6, 2012 at  7:30 pm.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Time to Celebrate

The Ancient Order of Chinese Frycooks and Busboys have asked us to remind everyone that today is the Holy Day to celebrate the holy words (and their tasty vessels) of Wontonism.  Just remember that when reading the sacred texts the in bed is always assumed.  Happy National Fortune Cookie Day!

Chuck posted this on Thursday, September 13, 2012 at  8:20 am.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Why Yes, I Am Doing Better Than I Was Four Years Ago

The Republicans have finally gotten around to asking the question that Reagan used so effectively in 1980 – Are you doing better than you were four years ago?  I don’t want to gloat for those in different situations, and it’s certainly been a rough four years, but I have to answer yes I am.  Sorry Mitt.

As far as the law practice goes, 2008 and 2012 are looking to have very similar results financially.  2008 saw a late flurry in family law work as old clients were forced to adjust the child support and visitation to deal with the economic collapse; 2012 is seeing a resurgence of transactional work with small businesses and non-profits, and a steady flow of other work.  2010 and 2011 were mostly just devastating, but they’re water under the bridge now, and even at their lowest points self-employment brought it more than retail drone jobs ever would have.  I’ll call work a wash on the better-than / worse-than question.

On the bright side, the crash recreated the concept of affordable real estate in Southern California, something I’d begun to think was just a myth my parents’ generation talked about to tease my generation.  In 2011, my husband and I became homeowners.  The corresponding tax benefits started kicking in this year, and by buying low we may actually have a tiny sliver of equity in Casa.  Even without equity, we have about 50% more usable space for roughly the same monthly outlay as our former apartment in a much better neighborhood.  Of course, we pay for maintenance that our former landlord should have done, but we also don’t have mold in the master bath and have an HOA that actually deals with termites (the July fumigation vacation), instead of someone telling us to ignore them.  Maybe if they felt ignored they’d just leave?  I’m certainly call the housing a positive change.

Nissantruck, my 1994 pickup and a former regular of this blog, went to greener highways in 2008.  It was replaced by a well-used Mercury Tracer on an interim basis, and then Cash For Clunkers brought us into a dealership in 2009.  We upgraded to a 2010 red Toyota Corolla.  Cabernet serves us well to this day and certainly counts as an upgrade over the last four years.

The rest of my day-to-day life hasn’t changed that much.  I’m still happily married, at least according to California if not the federal government; still cancer-free and with coverage and good treatment from Borg Health; and still have too little put away for retirement.

I’ll probably talk more here later about who I’m going to vote for and why, but I’m not ready to go there yet.  As Mitt likes to point out, the economy’s important, but it’s certainly not the only issue in town.

Chuck posted this on Monday, September 10, 2012 at  12:19 pm.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Pool Bots

The Google Finance bot seems to think that my interest in Pool Corp will be affected by Prince Harry’s nekkid pool antics.  The Yahoo Finance bot is ignoring the story, or is at least smart enough to realize that all four-letter combinations of P-O-O-L do not represent Pool Corp’s stock ticker.  Will someone please remind me why it is Google search that rules the world?

Chuck posted this on Tuesday, August 28, 2012 at  3:16 pm.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Childhood Memory Failure

The topic of Neil Armstrong’s death yesterday and the Apollo 11 lunar landing came up at an otherwise great dinner with my parents last night.  When asked, I of course said I remembered watching the landing on television.  The only problem is that I remember watching the landing with a group in our Kindergarten classroom at Wardlow Elementary School, and they remember waking me up to watch it in our living room.  Their version actually makes much more sense, since Kindergarten didn’t start for my year until September 1969, and the landing was in July.  From now on I’ll have to say that the first one I remember was one of the later landings, not exactly sure which, but unfortunately not the Big One.

At least I should be able to remember Curiosity’s Mars landing for a while.  I’m not that old yet.

Chuck posted this on Sunday, August 26, 2012 at  1:48 pm.   Make the second comment. 

We’re Back

The family (two humans, one dog, seven fish and a lot of plants) is back in Casa with the fishies finally rejoining us today.

Everything that was supposed to survive the fumigation did.  The things that were supposed to die either escaped or had the good manners to die in the walls.  We actually never saw much of a problem, but we know that other units had issues, and we were in no position to stand in front of the condo board and fight for termite rights when it was decided to tent the whole neighborhood.

The only thing close to drama was when the aquarium filter refused to restart after the move back to Casa Saturday afternoon.  We don’t weep for replaceable tech though.  We celebrate the opportunity for an upgrade with gusto and use the opportunity to make certain every piece of electrics and electronics here knows that they’d better behave to survive.

Chuck posted this on Saturday, July 28, 2012 at  5:56 pm.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Fishies’ First Roadtrip!

The fact that I’d rather not have my fish die as the fumigators do their thing is leading to a very first for our little family: the fishies are joining us for their first roadtrip.  For their sakes I wish we could do it right: maybe see their cousins at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, or at least take them on Ariel’s Undersea Adventure at California Adventure, but a short jaunt up the road to visit Grandma and Grandpa for a few days will have to suffice.

Chuck posted this on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at  10:58 am.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Making Light

Randy’s away, the house elves will rip out fixtures. Isn’t that how the old saying goes? Oh well, let’s make it the new saying.

One of the eyesores at Casa has been the kitchen lighting. Big old-school flourescent tubes. Either the ballast or the transformers were going bad in the fixtures, but they were so ugly it wasn’t worth diagnosing their issues. Much better just to let them ride out to the recycling center in the sky.


So gone it is.


Chuck posted this on Wednesday, July 11, 2012 at  9:13 am.   No comments yet. Be the first. 

Bad Fortune

Very disappointed in the Ancient Order of Chinese Frycooks and Busboys’ new house of worship in North Park, Wang’s. While the food and drinks were outstanding, the divine inspiration was seriously lacking, more similar to platitudes than prognostication.

My fortune was foretold as being:

Today is a good day for being with a companion [in bed]

Well, duh. Aren’t most days?

Others received at our table were even more boring (boringer?):

Your life will be peaceful and fulfilling [in bed]

Whether you choose love or fame, you’ll be able to handle either or both [in bed]

Maybe the fortunes are correct, and our lives are just destined to be mediocre and boring, but that’s certainly not the kind of divine guidance I tip well for.

Chuck posted this on Sunday, June 10, 2012 at  7:36 am.   Make the second comment. 

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