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First of all I want thank the folks who wrote supportive comments to yesterday’s lugubrious post. I almost didn’t post it. Things are tough. We aren’t allowed to pick the times we live in; we are only given the choice to rise to the occasion or to succumb. I hope do the right thing.

Today is Father’s birthday; he is 86. Brothers #1-4 have been texting back and forth trying to come up with some sort of prize for the occasion. Being blind, we can’t give him books and he has all the audio-books he needs for a lifetime. “No prizes!” he states (sounding like his mother) “I just want phone calls from my sons”. I hope Brother #3 and #4 and family will get together and grill something scrumptious and everyone has a good snort in his honor. I know I will.

I made my first loaf of bread In the Spo-fan Memorial Mix-master.* For kneading, it beats my hand-work by by a country mile. It was the best loaf I’ve made so far and I was pleased as Punch. I grade it at a B+/A-. I didn’t bake it long enough, and I think I should ‘knead’ it longer next time. My next loaf should be an ‘A”. After I get the hang of white I will try rye or ‘egg’ or something.

Going to the gym is discouraging. I try to go and do something every day but something always manages to get in the way. Last week it was car troubles. I am going a few times a week rather, which is better than not going at all. Whenever there are missed days, it feels like I am ‘starting over at the beginning’. How soon my strength leaves me! I would like to get some muscle on me but at most it feels like the best I can do is keep from losing more. At nearly sixty years old, this may be all I can do. Alas, Babylon! I fear I will never become one of Fearsome Beard’s pin-ups. I used to worry the fellows at the gym were all looking at me in contempt but I realize this is not so. They don’t look at me at all; they think I’m hopeless. ho ho ho.

It has been a long while since I made a Spo-shirt; I can’t remember when. I’ve been wondering about the the ‘why’ of this. It’s mostly because I have sunk all my sewing energy into making masks and I have plenty of Spo-shirts already. I don’t need more. Many don’t fit anymore, worse luck, but I don’t want to give them to Goodwill. I wonder would it cheer me up to make a new one (XL this time). After all there’s nothing like a new frock to brighten up your day. At home in the drawer there are two rolls of cotton fabric from which to choose: #1 is white with black abstract black strokes, it resembles a Jackson Pollack painting. #2 is a fabric of U of M maize and blue “Ms” I bought for an alumnus who changed his mind he thought it too gaudy to wear to a parking lot pregame party.* I may make both into shirts and keep one of them, putting the other one up for raffle.

*Can you imagine?

*The Kitchen-Aid. I have a vague memory of some relation referring to all stirring appliances as mix-masters. Mix-master is a bit more fun to say too. The bread recipe was given by Lori (the dear!) and made in the Kitchen-Aid donated by another Spo-fan (also a dear!). There is lots of love going into my baking.

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