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15 December is an important date in The House of Spo for two reasons: it is Someone’s birthday* and it is International Tea Day. For the sake of the day I am having some Twinings Earl Gray. I’ve written ad nauseam on this blessed brew so newer Spo-fans can peruse the entries. I’m off to find some stocking stuffers, so I will leave you with this little ditty: 

 

*For his birthday prize I got a set of kitchen knives to replace the ones he’s had for decades.  If I should suddenly disappear this weekend please connect the dots and don’t eat the pies. 

insanity  The Wonder Receptionist informed me I have no openings available for appointments until early February; please stop telling patients to ‘come back in a few weeks’ as there is no place to put them. This means I can’t ‘squeeze people in’ and the new ones scheduled later this month won’t have their first follow up appointment for months later. I can hear the orchestra of scorched cats tuning up as patients will be calling frantic they can’t get in to see me this is an emergency dammit. I emailed The Boss-man with the modest proposal the clinic call the new evaluations who are scheduled in January and cancel them all. They will be understandably very upset but I need to attend to the patient I already have. My goodness it’s exhausting being wanted. 

Today among the fresh set of Christmas catalogs and junk mail was a package from Post Canada. I got another package of sweeties from the Great White North.   Thank you !!!   It made my day!   They are Canadian delicacies some of which I have never seen.  Hot puppies!

Also in the post today was a package of graph paper sent by Brother #4. He recently asked me to design a map for his upcoming Dungeons and Dragons game.  I’ve not done this sort of thing since the 80s. Don’t worry he says, he will provide the basic design and all I have to do is draw the details and give names to some of the places and points of interest. I am going to have a lot of fun inserting easter eggs and obscure references into this map, most will probably fly over the head of his players. Imagine Brother #4 telling his (straight) D&D buddies they are now approaching The Stonewall Inn. There will be the small town of Tweeksberry which is infested with rats. The burg is located near the Rolling Grass Hills and just down the path from The Cave of Caerbannaog.*

Insanity  So far there isn’t a shred of Christmas decorations up at the House of Spo. I sense Someone hasn’t any interest in doing so, so if I am to have any hohoho I better do so myself. We are the only house on the block that isn’t decorated up like a whorehouse in Kansas.** This weekend I want to wrap the cacti up with some modest lights just enough to ward off the wrath of the neighbors who would think us godless otherwise.

This weekend is the feast day of Someone’s nativity. He doesn’t have any plans but work work work all day. He’s no fun, he falls right over.  All the same I got him a fabulous birthday prize, one which I hope he likes. I like it anyway. Spos are notorious for giving prizes they like themselves, just in case the recipient doesn’t so the prize is not wasted.  Very practical, no?  I shan’t tell you what it is, lest he reads this or The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections shoots off their mouths the stirges.  I may have to banish them to Brother #4’s D&D game.  I’ll put them in The Island House Inn and see if anyone catches on.

 

*Go look it up. 

**I heard my great Uncle Milo say this once while driving by a house bedecked from top to bottom like a carnival cruise ship.  “It looks like a whorehouse in Kansas” he said, which made my great Aunt Lois quite upset.

I apologize to Spo-fans near and far I’ve had no time to write a proper post. I am in  conferences all day long, powwowing with my fellow wizards, learning things to make me less stupid.  The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections are down the street at Treasure Island” playing poker.* Here are some tidbits I have learned along the way.

Try to tell as many people as you can in town. 

20% of the body’s energy is consumed by the brain, although it is only 2% of the body’s mass.  Pig. 

Speaking of rapacious brain matter, 50% of our genes are for brain development. 

Despite ‘depot shot’ medications’ proven benefits towards keeping patients stable, patients are loathe to use them. They want control; they want to stop meds if they should want to.  

There are five main types of dementia: Alzheimers; Frontal lobe; Lewy body type; Parkinson-type; Vascular-type. I remember them with the mnemonic  “All Fags Love Pink Vests”. I admit it isn’t a nice way to remember something but it works. 

Before the onset of dementia, the first sign is ceasing usual activities and the second sign is developing a depressed or apathetic mood. 

Estrogen has anti-psychotic -like properties but androgens tend to cause psychosis. This means women are generally sane while men are basically crazy.

The leading cause of traumatic brain injury isn’t car accidents or assaults or sports injuries; it is falls. Try not to have any please. 

Haldol kills neurons via 15 different toxic ways. Don’t use this. Ever. Besides, it’s so 80s. 

There is a growing prevalence of autism. No one knows why. It could be because what we call autism has become so broad. 

Giving amphetamines to patients makes them feel good, something called ‘the halo effect”. Just because a person feels better doesn’t mean they have ADHD or depression. It means they are taking speed. 🙂 

 

*They were banned from “Paris” for reasons I won’t mention lest you are eating.

Greetings from Lost Vegas!  I am attending a three-day conferences, powwowing with my fellow wizards, many of them well over four feet. Most folks when they think of a shrink envision a Freud-like old man in glasses and bow tie (if only!). Truth is the profiles in the conference room resemble a GOP nightmare of diversity.  It also resembles a night at the theatre viz. everybody is old. There are few who look under forty. Like the opera or the symphony there is a general decline in attendees for ‘live conferences’ ; the older ones die off and the youngsters don’t come. There are many reasons for this. Truth be told I wouldn’t have bothered but it is only a 4-5 hour long drive and I get to spend Lost Vegas as a tax deduction and Someone promised he’d go with me.

I am pleased as punch Someone came with me; I hate being alone in hotels. Neither one of us are good at “doing nothing” so it was a challenge to get him to come with me. He doesn’t like to sit in hotels either. He has to play doctor’s wife all day and try to keep himself amused while I learn things.

More challenging than Someone doing nothing is Urs Truly sitting still for eight hours. My hummingbird-brain goes less patient with long hours of concentration. During the more dull or unimportant lectures today I plan to look like I’m listening but do something else.  Spo-fans with blogs shouldn’t be surprised to see comments popping up on their blogs.  Take it as a compliment: I would rather read what you are up to than listen to “The practical approaches to managing ADHD co-morbidities”.  I think there’s some irony here but it looks like the lectures are commencing so I’m off.  

Last weekend Sunday night Someone and I had our Thanksgiving dinner.  As there was only the two of us, we tried to ‘keep it simple”.  Cooking a holiday meal ‘for two’ is not humanely possible, at least in our house. Despite trying to cut recipes in half, we had tons of leftovers. We will be living off this simple supper for a fortnight.   On the other hand if there was one day in the year for over-eating and self-indulgence it is Thanksgiving.

Someone doesn’t like mashed potatoes but he likes sweet potatoes – or yams as he sometimes calls them. He made a sweet potato casserole.  It had a brown sugar topping and was as sweet as sugar candy. Deprived of mashed potatoes I put my foot down on mini-marshmallows in the dish.  It’s tough to pair wine with Thanksgiving dinner given the sweetness of this dish. Wine aficionados suggest eliminating the sweet potato dish for the sake of the wine but this was vetoed by Someone with a hot oath.

He also made a corn dish, whose title included “Bourbon” in it. Someone doesn’t drink bourbon so he relied on my advice which one to purchase. Only a few tablespoons were needed, so I chose a good bottle, knowing I get the rest. It was a win-win situation.  I liked the dish although Someone thought it a disappointment: it was supposed to be more of cake when it was more likely a loose pudding.

We had a turkey breast rather than a full turkey so there wasn’t a cavity in which to cook the stuffing. This is supposed to be hazardous to do anyway. We made ours in a crockpot somewhat out of whimsy but mostly to free up space in the oven and the stove top.   Our stuffing is based upon cornbread, another Someone favorite.  I think he could live off of cornbread and sweet potatoes.

One downside of a turkey breast we realized is there is no dark meat or legs. I like a turkey leg and dark meat is good for chicken pot pies, which is the official Spo-house dish for food-pushing leftover turkey.  Perhaps we will make a turkey soup this time around.

What was missing was green bean casserole.  While I extol proper food and abjure rubbish I confess I like this dish.  Mother made it the Midwest way: a can of cream of mushroom soup combined with a can of green beans, with salt and pepper to taste.  The fried onion topping appeared later on.

Someone loves to make pumpkin pie; he always makes two of them. He likes his with homemade whipped cream; I like mine with Edam cheese. We had some of both.  I had only one slice which satiates my appetite for pie. This morning I saw in the fridge  ~ 3/4 of the first pie had been consumed in the night.  I suspect Nargles are behind it.

I am sitting in the Hyundai service center, waiting for the mechanic or someone like him.  It was allegedly a simple oil-change but you know how these things go. I fear they will find something frazzled that needs immediate attention and mega-bucks. Being the Boy Scout that I am (Second Class I recall) I brought along a lot to-do items and enough reading material to last a lifetime. About the latter: I recently finished a history of how Prince Charles managed to get out of England before the Roundheads got him. I won’t spoil the ending for you lest some Spo-fans haven’t read it. 

I could get up and walk around and buy a car. Someone’s birthday is in a fortnight and he has no clue what he wants. He ‘needs’ a new car – the 2001 (yes, you read that right) is dead as a doornail in the garage. I want someone to haul it away and replace it with something new no rubbish.

I won’t miss the 2001 but it had a simplicity which was charming.  Nowadays cars come with more computer buttons than an airplane. Rumor has it they are beginning to drive themselves and they receive telepathic requests freeing the drivers to gape at their phones even more than they already do. My needs in a car are simple: get me there and back again with good gas mileage and where is the button to turn on the podcasts. Several of the salesmen here have appealing looks so following one of them around for awhile doesn’t sound too bad for my wait.  

I had hoped the Muses would Grace me (pun intended) with something more profound or witty upon which to write than this but there it is. One doesn’t look gift horses in the mouth, and that includes new cars. Tune in tomorrow to see if I got laid or I bought a 2018 Elantra hybrid or actually wrote an exciting entry. 

 

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Although I didn’t eat a scrap of proper Thanksgiving dinner today I had a lovely holiday. It started with a call from Warrior Queen and her consort Todd G. (the dears!). I had several FaceTime calls from various Spo-relations who were all bouncing off each other with ADHD excitement. For supper I made a fabulous M&C with fried cubes of SPAM. It was very good and we ate it with relish. After dinner Someone and I watched an episode of Dr. Who and I had a good snort of rare Mexican whisky (no basura). Oh to have a proper fireplace fire right now!  It would be an absolute delight to sit in the inglenook and fall asleep.

I coiffed the blog with some holiday trimmings. The Board of Directors Here at Spo-reflections is pleased as punch to have its photo inserted among the widgets*.  

Despite the my frock and the gaiety of the day I don’t have much to report otherwise. Tomorrow I take the car to the mechanic. I hope the dear can figure out what is making that dreadful scraping noise under the car. I sense I will have lots of waiting time to compose something of wit and value.  Don’t touch that dial. 

 

 

 

*Actually the picture is a cartoon pinched from the internet. I’ve never been successful getting them to sit still long enough to get a proper portrait. Once upon a time I hired a professional photographer to do the job. It didn’t go well. They took umbrage at his bossiness and retakes. In the end they burned down the studio and sold him to the Rus. It was tactless but they were very angry. 

cropped-pen

There is no work like the three days prior to the Thanksgiving day weekend. The phone rings allegro non troppo from folks anxious to get their Rx filled before the long weekend. Lord forbid they run out of valium and have to face the family dinner unmedicated.  In this day and age I can renew prescriptions 24/7 but people still worry about getting all done before Wednesday evening. Remember the time you had to get to the bank before Friday evening lest you run out of cash for the weekend? It’s a three-day rush followed by two days (I hope) of peace and quiet. 

I won’t have Thanksgiving. Someone works all day Thursday and I don’t really know anyone to crash their arty. Thursday will be a quiet day home alone. Please don’t feel sad or write in. I am looking forward to two days of non-living. There will tea and books followed by a snort and a simple supper. Doesn’t that sound scrumptious? I plan to make me some M&C using fried cubes of SPAM. Thanks Ravanger619 !

Friday will be even quieter. Sooner I’d eat rats at Tewkesbury than venture out on Black Friday. That said my hair wants cutting. If there is parking I will go to the barbershop.  I lead a dull life. 

I whooped it up for Halloween and Thanksgiving is a bust. That 1 to 0 on the score card. I haven’t yet made put my mind whether or not to do a full up Christmas or just blow it off. Whatever, I shan’t worry about it now. Although it is only 8PM I think I will crawl into bed now with Mr. Pepys. It’s January 1666 and he is hoping for a good year. Ouch. 

 

P.S. Someone and I will have a modest turkey breast with stuffing and kung pao Brussels sprouts on Sunday, his day off. 

Travel Penguin (the dear!) recently posted about a teacher of his who listed fifteen things you could do to to facilitate kindness and dilute the acrimony that is America.  I thought I would give this a try as I am feeling rawther loathsome. 

1. Tell a joke – I’m afraid I don’t tell jokes well but here it goes: I went to see a podiatrist; he turned out to be a psychiatrist. He said there’s something terribly wrong with you !You nose is running and your feet are smelling!

Tell me in the comments if that brought you happiness.

2. Call a friend or a relative – I do this regularly whether they want me to or now; sometimes they call me. Brother #3 recently called to propose we both get an advent calendar consisting of baby bottles of bourbon.  That is indeed brings happiness. 

3. Give a compliment to a stranger. This morning I almost told the bagger at Albertsons he has the cutest butt I’ve seen in ages but only thanked him for his service. This one didn’t make me happy. 

4. Make up with anyone you’ve fallen out with (even if you feel it’s their fault) – This is continuously done by necessity; Someone appreciates it. 

5. Give someone a hug.  The bagger wasn’t happy.

6. Leave a happy note for someone to find.  E-flat is better than A-minor. 

7. Email an old teacher who has made a difference in your life. Now where on earth does one find such a thing I wonder?  I would think they wouldn’t know who I was and immediately suspect me as a stalker. 

8. Hand-write someone a letter, and mail it.  I am pleased as punch to report I did three this weekend. I thanked them for the Halloween treats. 

9. Smile at someone on the street, just because. The bagger – whose name was Robbie – seemed to appreciate this until I opened my mouth.

10. Talk to the shy person who’s sitting by themselves at a party. This one may be a bust. I am that person and I am never invited to parties.

11. Help a parent with their baby stroller.  No way Jose! Around here they call the cops just for looking at your stupid stroller with its changeling-brood. 

12. Help someone struggling with heavy bags.  I do this all the time at work; I give out tips for better sleep hygiene. 

13. Stop to talk to a homeless person. Often they cut to the chase and put out their hands and ask for my money or they tell me they ‘aren’t for sale’. This is confusing. 

14. Give up your seat to someone on the bus or train. I can’t remember when I last rode either but this is just common manners – not a source of happiness.  One doesn’t applaud the tenor for clearing his throat. 

15. Give someone a book you think they’d like. If Spo-fans want to enter their names in a comment saying “I’m in!” I will erect a book-lottery from which I will draw a name and send the fateful winner one of my favorite tomes. I don’t know if this makes you find happiness but it makes me smile.  

In a jovial mood Someone reached out to me this morning while we were brushing our buckies to bump his fist with mine. As I moved in for contact I shouted “Wonder Twin powers, activate!”  He stiffened and drew back his fist puzzled at this unrecognized ejaculation.  I explained.  For Spo-fans like Someone ignorant of The Wonder Twins they are a “B” level set of super heroes. When this set of twins bump their fists one of them transforms into an animal while the other turns into some form of water.  I forget which one does what. I remember as a boy thinking neither power seemed that ‘super’ and the one who turns into a waterfall or a snow cone got the short end of the carrot.

As suppose most boys (and girls too?) fantasize about having superpowers usually disguised by some drab personae. I don’t recall doing so.* I suppose it was because I was not a fighter or believed in my own masculinity. I am now reassessing my inner-secret powers and wondering what they may be. It seems super heroes have proliferated since my youth; it seems all the super abilities are taken and copyrighted leaving me with nothing, like coming to a garage sale after all the good stuff’s been taken.  Perhaps I can pick and choose from the pantheon to make a Chimera of powers.  Super-Spo shoud have the following:

The body of The Sub Mariner

The flying ability of Superman

The chapeau of Thor

The weather control abilities of Storm**

The accessories of Wonder Woman (including tiara)

The buttocks of Robin the Boy Wonder

The package of the Incredible Hulk***

Having super powers probably means I am obliged to fight for the right. I just can’t walk up and down the streets of Palm Springs like Musetta having all swoon and drool over my attributes.  I suppose I could be a super-villain rather; they seem to have all the fun anyway.  I daresay I would make a disappointing bad guy as I don’t care to take over the world or have all of Oz kiss my feet.  I guess I have to settle with my rapier wit, writing style, and keen knowledge base to get me through. It doesn’t make for good comic book or Marvel movie material but I guess it’s enough for cocktail conversation and supper invite.

Post script – A Spo-fan (the dear!) texted me on this topic to clarify a few things:

If you have super powers and uses them for good/fight evil this makes you a super hero. Storm qualifies for such.

The Wonder Twins are Jayna and Zan; Zan is the one who turns into water forms.

You don’t have have original or unique super powers – just need to be original how you use them.  

1099823

 

*For me, I wanted to be like Samantha or one of her ilk from “Bewitched”.  No flying, fighting, or capes needed.

**Storm is not a super hero per se but an X-man character. Please don’t write in.

***There goes our G-rating. TBDHSR will be most upset.

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