“I am half inclined to think we are all ghosts…it is not only what we have inherited from our fathers and mothers that exists again in us, but all sorts of old dead ideas and all kinds of old dead beliefs and things of that kind. They are not actually alive in us; but there they are dormant all the same, and we can never be rid of them. Whenever I take up a newspaper and read it, I fancy I see ghosts creeping between the lines. There must be ghosts all over the world. They must be as countless as the grains of the sands, it seems to me. And we are so miserably afraid of the light, all of us.” – Ibsen (from his play “Ghosts’)

Sometimes when one of us proposes we do something different than the usual way it is reclined along the following dialogue:

“I got an idea, rather than going to Kobalt on Friday as we always do, let’s try going to Bar-1”

“No thanks”

“Why not?

“It is custom” (translation: I don’t want to change what we usually do).

This expression is a tongue-in-cheek reference taken from a book (I forget which one) about a man visiting a country in which he encounters a lot of questionable if not downright dysfunctional attitudes and actions. When he asks ‘why’ or suggests alternative ways of doing and thinking he is told over and over the way things are done are done as ‘it is custom’. No one is willing to think outside the box let along alter the status quo.

“It is custom” is one of mankind’s greatest impediments.* Most of the time we are so enmeshed in cultural norms we don’t question them. It is sort of like a fish being asked how’s the water and it thinks what is water?” A lot of my professional and personal life is getting folks/ myself to recognize what they are immersed in isn’t an absolute truth nor is it unchangeable.

Speaking of my own culture (America), a lot of misery and disease here derives from it. If a person fails it is their own damned fault. Public shootings cannot be stopped. Health care is not a public service. Many in the land are beginning to question these so-called truisms. They either try to alter things and are met with the resistance of thems in charge who are all too ready to say ‘it is custom’ or they devolve into dropping out of society. The rise of depression/anxiety in the land (especially in children and adolescents) is correlated with the consequences of ‘it is custom’ thinking. They are immersed like fish in the foul waters and do not thrive. Society addresses problems with pat answers and band-aids and the usual point-the-finger-at ‘them’ who are the scapegoats.

I don’t know have answers to fix things, but I can do my part by constantly challenging ‘it is custom’ beliefs whenever I sense one. Given our negative bias towards things we tend to think ‘it is custom’ ways cannot be altered. This is not so. When enough folks do what was considered written in stone can change. Let us hope so.

I wrote this on a Monday morning before the work week began. I will challenge patients with depression and anxiety to look at the context and their surroundings for contributions to their symptoms. “It is custom” can questioned at home/at work/in the nation and maybe make a difference.

*Other impediments include our tendency to split folks into ‘us vs. them’, to obtain more than is necessary, and build strip malls.

SIL #4 tested positive for covid on Thanksgiving Day’s Eve poor thing. She was to host at her house and be chief cook and bottle washer. Alas Babylon for the lot of them. T-day was canceled or delayed it is not certain which. No one sounded devastated by this. I think many were secretly relieved they didn’t have to help a full day making a meal that is consumed in a few minutes. Traditionally at Thanksgiving time, names are drawn over the pumpkin pie for the Spo-clan “Secret Santa”. This is a tradition I suspect many in my family would vote to do no more but being Midwesterners no one wants to be the one that instigates it. If they do dinner today I may hear by the end of the day we are doing it again. I am OK with this.

Spos far and wide* are pleased as Punch that yesterday The University of Michigan beat That-school-in-Columbus. Not only did they win, this happened in the dark heart of Ohio and done by a wide margin. This alliance of stars is rare as white buffalos so we take it when we can. There was much rejoicing – at least by the ones not sick with covid. I haven’t watched the game in decades as it is too nerve-racking to do so.

Rumor has it OSU has denied the outcome and will submit a lawsuit demanding a recount of the score as the game was stolen. 🙂

Thanks to a long weekend Sunday is bereft of there’s-work-to-be-done tasks. Someone and I need to figure out my insurance for 2023, the deadline being 2 December. Spo-fans may recall I missed last year’s deadline and I started the year in a gummy-panic facing a year sans insurance (that means without). You bet your knickers we’re not going to let this happen again. I have three Hobson choices to figure out which one is the least painful. I will have something not nothing. Fingers crossed.

Today I may get out some of the easier-to-find Christmas trimmings like the holiday tea-things and mugs and dinner napkins that sort of thing. I forgot Advent starts today and I am bereft of purple candles. Yesterday I wrote to Santa Bezos asking His Magnificence to send some toot suite. He or one of his minions wrote right back saying I must have patience and wait a few days. Ha! Remember when we had to wait weeks for something to arrive? The world didn’t seem to end for it.

That’s all the Sunday-Spo-bits there is I suppose. I lead a dull life. Today I plan on reading blogs and getting caught up with everyone’s shenanigans, hoping they are well and have a more interesting life than I have these days.

*The majority of them anyway. The branch of Spo who reside in Columbus aren’t so jolly.

I’ve identified another faerie that resides at La Casa de Spo. Besides the usual elves, there are The Tupperware Tomtes. Unlike the Car Key Gnomes or the Cup Sprites who move things about that are eventually found The Tupperware Tomtes take things that disappear for good. Someone the other day complained he couldn’t find a container with matching lid for some leftovers. This prompted a removal of all Tupperware and their ilk from their drawer to pair things up. Oh the horror. The above photo contains all for which there is no compatible top or bottom.* I once made a vow to always keep these things together and have the Tupperware drawer as orderly as The Buddha on Adderall. Neither have happened. Maybe it’s just not humanely possible especially when there are Tomtes about looking for containers for goodness-knows-what-for.

As you can see in the mismatch there are more container missing they’re lids than the other way around. The main missing types are oval-shaped like that of a Roman amphitheater. Rationalists in the home poo-poo my hypothesis missing socks are the result of worm holes in the time-space fabric that only a dryer can create are a slightly more open to the hypothesis lids are destroyed in the dishwasher over time and we have forgotten about it.**

What to do with the ones missing counterparts is not yet settled. I suppose there is an on-line Tupperware lid replacement site I should look for; no harm asking. Someone suggests we use them using cling-wrap or aluminum foil as substitutes for the missing lids. Another idea is to follow The Voice of Binky: toss them out. I hate to throw out the containers that have served me since the early 90s when I bought them in a Tupperware party.***

This ersatz Judgment Day of separating the sheep (matching sets) from the goats (non-matching sets) shows us how few sheep we have left. However this isn’t quite true. Most ‘sheep’ are in the freezer holding unmarked mystery meals that haven’t seen daylight or room temperature in ages. It reminds me to get them out and use’em dammit. I hesitate for two reasons. We are currently up to our oxters in Thanksgiving Day leftovers; we don’t need more from the freezer. Another reason is the sudden surge of matching Tupperware may make the Tomtes go into a purloined frenzy to separate such lovelies. It’s quite the nuisance having a household of mischievous sprites all set at moving and misplacing things.

Do you have troubles keeping containers and lids together?

*This is another one that doesn’t sound so good that The Board of Directors Here at Spo-reflections thought ribald enough to go unedited.

**Said Rationalists are downright against the notion of The Laundry Goblins and The Tupperware Tomtes as the cause of things going missing. He’s no fun he falls right over.

***Rumor has it the plastic used in older types of Tupperware aren’t good for use in hindsight and best to get rid of them for new and allegedly less-toxic types of Tupperware. I wonder if this is true or a mere marketing ploy to get you to buy new things.

The day after Thanksgiving is marked for making soup. Truth be told I enjoy making and eating turkey soup more than the actually turkey dinner of yesterday. The turkey dinner can be hit or miss but turkey soup is forgiving.* I used to follow recipes for this, but I’ve learned over the years this doesn’t require any it is make-it-up-as-you-go-along using whatever is at hand. I follow the ancient recipe:

  1. Take whatever you have
  2. Boil it in water for a while
  3. Eat it.

First step is to get out the carcass from last night and strip it of as much meat as possible for Someone to make a pot pie. There is usually enough left on the bones of the bird for the soup. The late Ann Marie AKA Warrior-Queen (may she rest in peace) gave me a few years ago an electric knife after I mentioned wanting one here for some years. I think of her whenever I use it.

Harper who can sleep through earthquake is awake and by my side for this step, begging for turkey bits, which she gets, but she is insatiable. She doesn’t mind those nasty bits covered in ‘jelly’ which I dislike.

The only question (still unanswered which is better) is to sauté the vegetables first adding the turkey or add them chopped to the simmering soup. This year I am doing the latter, using up some not-so-crunchy carrots and limp-looking celery in the fridge. I am having sense to let the carcass simmer for as long while to let water take on as much flavor as possible before adding herbs and salt and such.

The simmering soup gives the house a nice smell. After an hour or more I pick through the soup and remove all the bones, which are bereft of meat. Some folks strain all of this and just use the broth and add fresh new vegetables and chopped meat but I figure they are there already so what the hell. My way saves on vegetable but there is always a surprise bone bit in the servings.

Near the end there is the question whether or not to add a starch like pasta or egg noodles. There is a half box in the pantry of small orzo-like pasta whose only use is in soup. If I add chopped potatoes Someone is less likely to eat it. Egg noodles are my favorite but these lovelies could be used later on in a tuna fish casserole so I guess I will use the pasta bits after all.

One year I added a fancy rice but we both thought it overpowered the soup. This is turkey soup dammit not rice soup.

No matter how I make turkey soup it comes out more or less OK and there is enough to feed a well-patronized soup kitchen. Some if it will be eaten this weekend but a lot will be put into containers and frozen for later. I must must must remember to label these things as all frozen container contents look alike.

So that’s what I am doing this day. Someone is working at the convention hall in which a nation-wide bridge tournament is being held. My eyes cross at the sorts he must have to contend with today. I am glad to be at home in the kitchen stirring once, stirring twice, stirring turkey soup no rice.

*Yesterday’s turkey was a flop. We followed the advice of J. Kenji López-Alt on how to cook a turkey. He has never steered me wrong so I suppose the failure lies in operation error. The white meat was OK but the legs and inner thigh region came out hardly looked. Oh the horror. Someone and I took off some of the breast meat and ate with relish washing it down with large amounts of Gewurtztraminer wine to kill any bacteria. I put the bird back in the oven and we forgot about it engrossed in Doctor Who. The now well-done bird was a bit beyond table presentation but what the hell it’s going in soup and pot pies anyway. I may write Mr. Lopez-Alt to tell him his recipe is a turkey.

Thanksgiving day nowadays is a quiet affair. Gone are the days with the usual trappings of family get-togethers and football games on the TV and formal dinnerware. Back then I would often wake to watch the parade from NYC but without a TV and living on the west coast means this isn’t happening anymore. I wonder if the absence of the Macy’s parade is why Thanksgiving morning no longer feels like a holiday.

Someone and I will spend the morning doing food preparation. This year it is his turn to cook the bird so I needn’t fret how to do it. He doesn’t take truck with all the fancy ‘this is how to do it right’ hacks; he puts the bird in the oven and that’s that. I will allow myself some holiday delicacies of cooled shrimp with a good scotch. I will call my relations (gathering at Brother #4’s house this year) and text my dear ones a happy day.

The Homeowners Association forbids Christmas lights until Thanksgiving but sure as taxes by the end of today many will have their displays up and running. People in these parts go for the gaudy cover-everything-with-lights approach. If I put out lights they are modest luminarias to light path to the front door. Inflatable contraptions are popular. A few doors down that neighbor erects an inflatable Santa Clause who is sleeping in a bed with a blanket over him. Somebody always tries to insert a stick underneath the blanket which is removed as obscene and then someone tries again. It is the Desert Ridge equivalent of trying to burn down the Yule Goat in Sweden.

On social media (at least on FB) people often list all the things they are thankful for. I have a lot which I sometimes have to remind myself of. I will say here (for this is blog-land) I am thankful to be part of this community. I am grateful for the friends I have met through blogging.

I am very thankful to the Spo-fans who keep coming by to read my scribbles. You can imagine how good that makes me feel, I thank you for that.

Have a good day

Hugs,

Urspo.

What’s top of my mind: Thanksgiving. We will make a modest dinner of turkey, stuffing, and Kung Pao Brussel Sprouts, along with a sweet potato soufflé. Someone likes pumpkin pie, so he will make one for Small Chocolate Cone. This ‘modest dinner’ will provide many meals for us, including turkey for soup and a pot pie. Gewürztraminer is the official wine at Thanksgiving.


Where I’ve been: On the floor of the grocery store. I was at Uncle Albertsons the other day and wanting unsalted peanuts for Kung Pao Brussels and Deviled Peanuts. The peanuts are located on the lower shelf and all the ones out front and visible were gone. I can’t squat down that far anymore to reach in the for what may be in the back. I looked around to see if the coast was clear and I lay down in the aisle to extend my hand to the get those last two jars just out of easy reach. Just as I retrieved them a stately dame came around the corner with her full shopping cart and almost ran me over. Oh the embarrassment. She was not paying attention as she was gabbing on her phone. In her defense I don’t suppose she expected to see a man spread out on the floor in the snack section holding his nuts and struggling to stand erect.*


Where I’m going: Black Friday sale (sort of). For his birthday prize Someone wants a TV for we’ve been bereft of one for up to a year, so it is off to Best Buy (or something like it) this weekend we go. Sooner I’d eat rats at Tewkesbury than enter a store the weekend after Thanksgiving but there it is. We need one with precise measurements, so we won’t be overwhelmed by too many choices and mammoth screens wide as boats.


What I’m watching: The Who (David Tenant).
We are almost done with the episodes with Mr. Tenant. I will be sad to see him go. I hear tell he will be filling in for Dr. Who in the current series until the proper one is available. Someone thinks we should jump right to that one and skip the next Doctors (three of them?) but I won’t have it. The next incarnation after Mr. Tenant seems a nice fellow and he wears bow-ties so that’s a good sign.


What I’m reading: ‘The Krampus’ by Al Ridenour. Mr. Ridenour wrote a book on the full history of this fine fellow. I’ve become more attracted to the dark side of Christmas/Solstice season. It certainly doesn’t lack for variety of bogey-men and witches. Most cultures in Northern climes have a few of these sorts.** I think it would be jolly good fun to dress up as one of these frights one of these Decembers. I think I would be a good Krampus, but I probably resemble more The Belsnickel.


What I’m listening to: The Messiah. ‘No Christmas music” before Thanksgiving, but afterwards is the rule. I have a sort of progression of holiday music which starts with Mr. Handel’s oratorio (in E-flat). I like hearing this one early in the season, between Thanksgiving and the first of December.


What I’m eating: Edam cheese. Latter-day Spo-fans may not know it is a tradition in the Spo clan to have edam cheese with the pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. After all, we are one quarter-Dutch. Grandfather would get a large red-wrapped globe of the stuff from Holland Michigan. He would cut off the top along the “Arctic circle” and gouge out chunks with a specific silver cheese spoon. I buy a more modest one the size of a large hamburger patty (probably made in Wisconsin) and eat it with relish. Someone doesn’t care for cheese with pie, he likes whipped cream, which he whips from liquid – no rubbish types out of a cannister.

Do you eat cheese with your pie? Whipped cream rather? Ice cream? Do tell.


Who needs a good slap: The sore loser in race for AZ governor. The loser, whom I refer to as Serena Joy, won’t admit defeat and plans to drag this out kicking and screaming until (she hopes) people succumb and declare her the winner. It wasn’t too long ago the GOP demanded voting recounts in Maricopa County, which was costly, repetitive, and in the end still didn’t show anything – yet they never admitted they were mistaken. Taking a leaf from this book Serene Joy is going to do similar. A man with the government here in town is now in hiding from death threats from her minions, which she won’t publicly condemn. I sense she is hoping they do a Jan 6 coupe here in town on her behalf.

On my 1-5 scale, I give Go-jump-in-the-lake 5 slaps.


Who gets the fist bump: The nieces. I wanted to send a photo of The Yule Cat to Princess-Goddess the other day via Brother #3. He texted to just send it directly to her. I wasn’t aware she had a cellphone, since when? He responded with the cryptic two-word reply ‘middle school”. I got her number and texted her, telling her straightaway who I was with photo so she wouldn’t think I was some perv-stranger who was after her. Right away she texted back and we had a lovely text chat, in which she used full sentences. I asked if Warrior-Queen had a phone as well. It turns out she does so I texted her too. She was skeptical at first, informing me she was showing this to her parents for confirmation I was who I said I am before proceeding. Good for them for being careful and using proper sentence structures with their Uncle Spo.

Have you heard of kids in middle school having cellphones? This sounds not right.


What I’m planning: Turkey soup. I enjoy taking the turkey carcass and extracting as much meat for Someone to make a pot pie. I then take the carcass and put it in boiling water along with various vegetables to make turkey soup that I will put in the freezer (next to the pecans) for winter consumption. I think I enjoy the soup more than the actual turkey.

Anyone with any tips/recipes what they do with their turkey leftovers?


What’s making me smile: Formal dinnerware. The cupboards at La Casa de Spo are full up with several sorts of formal dinnerware, a collection of his, mine, ours, his mother’s, and my grandmother’s etc. We never use this stuff, having had no formal dinner in ages. At Thanksgiving I insist we pull out a few plates and wine goblets from one of them and have our dinner on proper china. It’s a bit tedious to wash up I know but it’s nice to use to formal gravy boat again along with the elegant glasses reserved for special occasions that never happen.

Do you have fancy dishes at Thanksgiving?

*That doesn’t sound right but The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections thought it funny and wanted it left unedited.

**Santa Claus is a wash for he has no Shadow side to round him out psychologically. Happily the good Dr. Seuss remedied this deficiency via The Grinch, who seems to be catching up to Kris Kringle in popularity.

Nuts (and their ilk) are tasty neat-to-eat treats. They are not often consumed at La Casa de Spo as they are high calorie and there’s no stopping eating them all once started. The laughable ‘servings per container” on the containers is ignored to eat the entire jar, so it is best to avoid having them around tempting ones lack of willpower. My late Mother would put out ‘bridge mix’ nuts in fancy bowls for her bridge parties, making nuts associated in my mind with special occasions. Nowadays I associate them with the holidays, eating them between Thanksgiving and New Years.

There is a brown nut in the shape of a slightly deflated football; I think it’s called The Brazil nut. Those are tasty but seldom sold separately. I am not a fan of the cashew, although its history is a fascinating one. Apparently this little crunchy lovely comes from the heart of a very toxic covering growing on a very toxic plant, conjuring up how on earth did the ancients figure out this bit was edible and worth the effort. There was a very large nut among the bridge mix that certain older relations referred to with a horrible nickname which I won’t write here. I never learned its real name so I can’t ask for it, worse luck.

Another memory from my nutty childhood is older relations putting out a bowls of walnuts at Christmas time, which were piled high with a heavy steel nutcracker on top. I never got the hang of how to use it, which was probably a good thing. Nowadays one can buy walnuts sans shells (that means without), which makes them too easily consumed in large amounts. I always thought they looked like little brains, so I wasn’t found of these either.

I like peanuts most although most nut connoisseurs poo-poo them as common. Technically they aren’t nuts but let’s not split straws. One can get ‘nut mixes’ lauding there are no peanuts or not many which sounds no fun to me. I am not one for the sweets but I eat honey-roasted peanuts with relish.

Every year at Christmas out of whimsy I make batches of ‘deviled peanuts” which is basically tossing unsalted peanuts in some oil and whatever spices are at hand and roasting them on a pan. I’ve learned if I add too hot of a hot sauce Someone won’t eat them which means I end up eating them all which is not good on my waistline. This week I found a few recipes in my collection of torn-out recipe clippings in the ‘to try’ accordion file. I will have nuts for days if I make them all. One involves using curry powder which means curried snacks. Oh the horror.

At the bottom of the kitchen freezer next to Walt Disney is a bag of pecans neither of us remembers when it was purchased or why. Perhaps one of us was thinking of making a pie and never got around to it.* I’ve been wondering what to do with them other than throw them out. Pecans don’t strike to me as munching nuts but something put into cookie recipes.

Last weekend we did our shopping for Thanksgiving and Someone proposed we get some nibbles for Thanksgiving prior to dinner, so we bought a large tin of mixed nuts. The Car Key Gnomes (or someone like them) opened them last night while we were sleeping to have themselves a few so it is doubtful if any will be there by Thursday. I may have to make my deviled peanuts early.

Ending with a ha-ha joke, I think it was Noel Coward who told people off with the saying:

“And you can put it where the monkey hides his nuts”

*I have never made a pecan pie. I must have had one once upon a time but I can’t remember exactly.

#31. Ask questions, and listen to the answers.

This one will more than slightly improve your life; it will improve you and everyone around you. Let’s look first at listening .

Listening to others is quite worthy yet so few people do so. Most of us aren’t listening but merely waiting for the other to stop speaking to start talking ourselves.

Listening is one of the crucial criteria to what makes a doctor good or bad. “He doesn’t listen to me!” and “I felt she listened to my questions.” I am constantly be on guard to listen to patients as it is too easy to interrupt them to get to the point. This is made worse with pressure to get a lot done in a small time period. I wish I had a shilling for every time a new patient (or established one) starts a long circumstantial narrative in response to a simple yes/no question and I clench my hands and hold my tongue do not interrupt them but let them speak. After thirty years of shrinking heads my intuition is keen that within a few words I often know where this is going and it is tempting to cut off the speaker to move on to the next matter. Many doctors fear they have to interrupt a talking patient for time’s sake, yet studies show when left along patients don’t take up too much time before they pause for the doctor to ask questions. And so much good is done to just sit there and listen!

In general the men-folk don’t listen as well as the women.* Another shilling is coveted for each time I’ve counseled a man to stop interrupting his spouse who is sharing her woes she isn’t asking you to fix it or give you advice but for you to hear what she is saying. “Don’t just sit here, do something!” is rearranged to be “Don’t just do something, sit there!” When we stop to think of the important people in our lives, chances are they are good listeners.

#31 strikes me as asking questions not to show off how clever you are or to trounce the other by making them look foolish. When we ask questions we whet our curiosity and this leads to learning and growth. I am in the camp ‘there are no foolish questions”. Pretending you ‘know all’ and fearing exposure and shame when you don’t is something we need to get over with. Back to the men-folk and the physicians, both beasts are pressured to be ‘all-knowing’ so asking questions allegedly shows a deficit not just ignorance or willingness to learn and grow.

In Mr. David McRaney’s book “How minds change” he points out arguing with another or showing them ‘the facts’ never gets them to change their minds. First, you have to engage them and this happens by asking them questions about their beliefs and what does that mean for them. After rapport is established, dialogue and change can happen.

Having high intuition and a hummingbird brain makes it very difficult for me to sit and just listen especially after a day of doing just that. Woe onto Urs Truly if I interrupt a certain someone who is talking or I say something that reveals I wasn’t paying attention. I am continually on guard for this ongoing fault of mine.

Asking questions should be seen as a sign of strength. I am not so vain or fearful to show I don’t know something, so I will ask and I will listen to the answer. This greatly improves life indeed.

*This may come as a shock to many Spo-fans I know but there are studies.

Yesterday I went to the grocery store around 11AM to pick up a prescription and while there do some shopping. Normally I visit Uncle Albertsons before 8AM before the unwashed masses descend. I forgot it was the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Oh the horror. I tried to do the grocery list but I lost nerve halfway through and left with the list only half done. We need to return tomorrow to do the rest, including the turkey which I couldn’t get near to. Preferably we will go before 7AM.*

As you can see, Someone and I decided to make a turkey after all. We had some doubts but we both like Turkey soup so a proper bird is required. I made the Halloween supper so Someone can cook the bird as he pleases. It was two years ago I spent three days brining the turkey in a special brine and then I cooked it in an elaborate way only to have a bird that tasted like any other. This year it goes into the oven and that’s that. All this time and effort trying to make a juicy bird seems a waste of time as that is what gravy is for.

Speaking of Thanksgiving drama, on Friday last The Medical Assistant informed me I was working the Friday after Thanksgiving. This was news to me. For years the place is closed on that day and I have a four day weekend. Apparently when the place was bought by The Overlords, the day after Thanksgiving is NOT a day off, but no one told me. I am the only clinician scheduled to work that day, the rest all took the day off. By my working this means the staff will have to work. The MA put on quite the indirect speech act not directly coming out saying she is speaking on behalf of all if I cancel they get a day off. Canceling has some consequences. I would lose income if I do. I don’t have anything planned for that day. I know the 20 or so patients scheduled for Friday will have to be called to reschedule, generating howls resembling an orchestra of scorched cats. Normally the staff hate doing this sort of thing but they were a-ok this time just say the word. Twenty upset patients is bad but not as dire as six to seven upset staff members, so I voted to cancel. The minions now have the day off to go Black Friday shopping. I am the nice one.

I found a new unused T-shirt in the the gym parking lot the other day, so I took it home hoping it would be useful. It says MARINE on its back. When Someone found the shirt he questioned how I got it. Not wanting to believe I would be so low as to carry home clothes found in a parking lot he thinks I am playing seedy Scrabble games with a Sargent Somebody. Oh the pain. Turns out the T-shirt is of poor quality fabric and it is tight enough to show off my paunch with great focus so it went into the bag to give to Goodwill. I suspect Sargent Somebody dropped it on purchase as it is cheap goods.

One final Sunday Spo-bit:

Brother #2 called me while he was traveling from Wisconsin (Land of Cheese) to Michigan (Land of Perpetual Snow and Ice). He explained he was down to a single lane behind a snow plow with terrible sight from all the white, the dreaded ‘lake effect snow”. It is hard to imagine there is snow as I look out the window at the bright sunny sky with highs 22C. Sometimes I fancy moving back in the Midwest then I hear something like this and I am not sure. I hope he gets there safe and sound. Apparently it took 3-4 hours more than usual. I hope Brother #3 has a good snort of scotch for him.

Are you living with snow in your neck of the woods?

Alas Babylon! My first and only attempt at wearing said T-shirt didn’t make me look like this Marine.

*The irony is I didn’t get the prescription. The unfamiliar pharmacist didn’t speak much English and explained in a quite-anxious state she was covering and she didn’t have some sort of ID password to get into things etc. I told her I would come back tomorrow as my presence only made her worse.

I’ve been up to my oxters in work this week and haven’t had any time for anything else.* Everything is connected to everything else. The office computer at MESA isn’t working, obliging me to do my notes by day by hand only to write them into the system at home in the evening hours. Hopefully this passes and the sooner the better.

It’s Saturday morning and the usual ‘there’s work to be done tasks” list is longer than usual. While my back was turned and glued to the screen La Casa de Spo has fallen into decay. The Cup Sprites (or someone like them) have made messes in every room and the pile of dirty duds to be laundered rivals the height of Fafner’s hoard. Oh the embarrassment and oh the horror to boot.

I am going to take in a deep breath and call on my Midwest matron ancestors to give me the strength and the Pine-sol to help with this mess. These Warrior Women when confronted with washing would roll up their sleeves to do battle against dust and debris. Generations of Spo who did justice against the lead-butt slow-leak attitudes of thems who were all too ready to accept squalor as OK means of life. By day’s end I hope all is done and if this goes really well I may get a hot dish out of it – but not too spicy as you know Uncle Milo has his troubles. Now who said that?

Come back tomorrow for something worthwhile to read. 🙂

*This is not literally true. There is some time (1-2 hours) in the evening when I could be doing things like reading blogs or writing entries but a part of my brain (frontolateral medial cortex I reckon) that puts me into a obstinate state of being in which I do nothing productive apparently to prevent the other brain parts from going into overload and staging dramatic breakdowns.

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