Sunday, February 27, 2011

Reliable Knowledge

In one of my courses this semester, we are reading a book called Reliable Knowledge: An Exploration of the Grounds for Belief in Science by John Ziman. It is a science book from a humanistic perspective. And for the first three chapters, I hated it. Last week a fellow student and I had to go through chapters one and two and formulate discussion questions. Ironically, my approach to this book was from a detailed, splitting-hairs perspective. Wrong approach. And then I felt stupid because I did not get it, especially in Chapter two, when we were discussing math. My nemesis. I really really wish I understood math, but my brain just does not comprehend it. And honestly, I am trying to convince my perfectionist self that it is okay. Now I know to approach the chapters we are assigned from a generalist, open perspective. I will have tomorrow to redeem myself. The latter chapters (there are seven but the information is dense) contain more interesting information about World Maps and Pictures, The Stuff of Reality, The World of Science, and Social Knowledge. There are even references to popular culture and literature such as a dalek and Alice in Wonderland. I may end up enjoying this book after all.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Poetry, Continued

This afternoon I made the first round of selections for my upcoming book entitled "In the Family of Trees." It was interesting revisiting poems I have not seen in years. There are also some poems that may never see the proverbial light of day due to the dorkness factor. Having said that, I just may release a book of the dorky and crazy poems I wrote many years ago. How ironic if people would like those the most. Enclosed please find a light poem I wrote years ago (pre-1997) that would have been perfect for my Business Communication course I just taught in February 2011. Enjoy! Interview Shoes Although appearances can be shallow, it's the way to go! If there are rings from head to feet, an employer will say no. It's good to keep up with the trends, fashion can be fun! To dress in jeans and a funky top in an interview, you're done! To get your feet into the door, adorn them with new shoes! To dress with care and confidence, there's little chance to lose.

Movie Night: The Tourist

Last night, I met up with a few girlfriends and we viewed a movie entitled "The Tourist" with Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp. Admittedly, it has been a long time since I went to the movies. I am not a huge movie viewer, due to the fact that I cannot always sit still long enough. The movie was okay. I did not have high expectations and wondered how Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp would make out (pun intended) onscreen. Admittedly, I did not see the chemistry. The scenery (Venice) was absolutely gorgeous and Angelina and Johnny were beautiful. However, Angelina's faux British accent reminded me of Lara Croft and Johnny sounded more French than American. The plot was forced, especially at the end. Rotten Tomatoes posted that the movie received a 20% rating of reviews with 48% of the audience approval. All in all, I would not give this movie a raving review, but it was not quite MST3K worthy. It was fun to watch and a nice evening out with friends.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Catkins for the Lady Cats

Okay, as I may have mentioned before, Moshi was definitely a bit heftier than she should be. She tipped the proverbial cat scales at over 11 pounds. No wonder I can feel the "thud" when she jumps on the bed. After visiting our vet and feeling somewhat guilty that we contribute to the cat obesity population, we decided to put the Lady Cats on a diet. (Psst! Don't tell them. Sakura may start spraying again.) Since Sakura is now approaching the age where she can be weaned off kitten chow and fed the adult version, we are slowly switching over to the adult version. Yes, although we have three cats of three different ages, there is no way we have the time or patience to give each one their own. Plus, monitoring them is an adventure in itself. Inadvertedly, the chow is always tastier in the other bowl, so we needed to make sure all the cats had access to food. We use organic cat food and we noticed a significant improvement in Java's health. So switching to the adult organic food will help trim their waistlines. We all know this winter promoted hibernation and not exercise. Until we can let the cats out to enjoy "porch time", We caught a sale at PetSmart and purchased a cat condo to help them exercise. (It gives our furniture a reprieve, too.) As you see in the photographs, it is a wise investment. However, there are still moments of laziness and relaxation; winter is not yet over. (In the first photograph, Sakura is on the end table. This happens at least once a day. Moshi is snuggling under the covers in the next two photographs. In the last two photos,Java is caught playing on the kitty condo and jumping down. We were thrilled to see Java playing again.)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Valentine's Day Story

Admittedly, I have not bought into the Valentine's Day holiday so much, especially in later years. To me, it is another commercialized holiday. I prefer the ordinary days the most. Calm, ordinary, and peaceful days with fleeting moments of beauty. Having said that, I want to share a Valentine's Day story from long ago when I first met Steve. Revert back to February of 1991.Steve and I were sophomores at Holy Cross College. I was in anti-man mode due to a breakup and was not dating anyone at the time. Steve and I were friends. It was the Sunday before Valentine's Day. I laid out my clothes for the next day. I was going to wear all black to protest Valentine's Day. (This was before basic black came back into vogue.) I was working out to one of the Jane Fonda video tapes in my sister's room. (She was away at college and had the VCR hooked up to the tv. Remember, this was 1991.) The doorbell rang. Mom came into the room and told me that someone was here to see me. I came downstairs in my t-shirt and shorts, disheveled from working out, only to see Steve, dressed up, standing shyly at the bottom of the stairs with a dozen red roses and a card. Surprised and touched, I graciously accepted. The next day, I only wore half black. Several months later (Thanksgiving 1991), we started dating, and the rest is history.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Moshi, Yuck-Mouth, and Catkins

Steve and I took Moshi to one of our favorite vets (Dr. H) a couple of weeks ago for her annual rabies vaccinations, etc. and discovered she needs to have her teeth cleaned. We spoke to her about Moshi's breath. We are not expecting our felines to have the proverbial breath-smelling-like-roses,especially after they have a)eaten smelly cat cuisine, or b)groomed thoroughly. We expect to experience occasional suspicious cat breath. However, with Moshi, she is the feline counterpart to the fictitious canine Hally Tosis in the picture book created by Dav Pilkey. When she yawns, the proverbial green gaseous cloud emits from her mouth. She has had this breath issue as long as we have known her. When we took her to the vet previously for checkups, etc., Moshi does have the herpes virus (kittens and cats can get this ailment, too. It is not shared with humans and vice/versa.) She did not show tooth decay. We give her dental treats and dry cat food. However, when we brought her in this time, Moshi has the feline version of gingivitis. Moshi's age (just over a year old) to have this surprised all of us. So, in addition to giving Moshi dental treats while trying to keep her weight down, we need to start brushing her teeth. Yeah, and I like having all my fingers, too. So today, I attempted the trick that Dr. H recommmended. Show her the toothbrush with toothpaste (kitty kind only) and give her a dental treat. Then have Moshi lick the toothpaste and sniff the toothbrush, and give her a dental treat. Next I will try to brush and then give her a dental treat. This may sabotage Moshi's "catkins" diet plan, but at least I will attempt to train her to allow me to brush her teeth so she will not be uncomfortable. Someday soon, perhaps the proverbial roses will emerge from Moshi's mouth. Probably not, but I am hoping it will not straighten my hair.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

February Snowscapes

It's been a cold winter. Hoping for sunshine and warmer weather soon. Here are some photographs of the beautiful moments.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Lady Cat Photos

Steve uploaded photographs. Of course, I have to showcase more pictures of the Lady Cats! Moshi is pictured here in a yoga pose while grooming. She lifted her leg and kept it elevated for her entire bath! Pictured in the middle is Moshi snuggling up to Java. The bottom photograph is a hilarious one of Sakura. More photos to share in the future...

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Third Book of 2011: The Lover's Dictionary

I picked up this jewel at the LaSalle Branch. This book, written by David Levithan, is written in an alphabetical and epistolary style. The top of the page is a defined word (including which part of speech) rather than a date of the passage. The author weaves a word lesson, a definition, and a love story in the pages. I am so inspired by this book that I would like to design a college literary book based on Levithan's tome. I need to add this book to my permanent collection. All I can say is "brilliant!"

National Lampoon's Garden Adventures, and Last Thoughts on 46

Update on Sake Sakura: We will be making an appointment to get Sake's MRI. It's been really hot and our schedules have been nuts,...