“All that deep deep deep snow,
All that snow had to go.
When our mother went down to the town for the day,
She said “Somebody has to clean all this away!
Somebody, somebody has to you see.”
So she picked out two somebodys
Sally and Me. ” – the Cat in the Hat comes Back
Yup, there was another snow. As Willow said on facebook: “St. Patrick’s Day blizzard? You’re late!” There’s something about it being “the first day of spring” that makes people act like suddenly it’s supposed to be warm, with flowers and butterflies. This is New England. Snow isn’t guaranteed in March, but it’s likely. This must be great for the people who are sugaring. So often if you want “sugar on snow”, there’s no clean snow to put it on. Come to think of it, it was often so warm that I was beginning to wonder whether I should open my bedroom windows. Then it got cold again, so when the storm did materialize, we had to dig out a path to the woodshed to refill the woodbox. We’ve actually been warmer the last few days since we have had the woodstove going than the week before that when it was warmer- so we didn’t bother to light it up. We have left a yardstick in the snow halfway across the driveway and have been watching as the levels go down. Before this latest snow it was down below eight inches. It was above 18 when it stopped snowing yesterday- but it’s subsided another two inches already.
It’s been a cozy family week. Very domestic. I’ve continued to put more embroidery on my apron. Since it covers my impressive surface it requires a LOT of stitches. I was thinking I was really ripping along, so I did one straight line of backstitch- and it took an hour. Well, it’s over five feet of embroidery. I guess I have no idea if that’s a good rate or not. I was using a bundle of floss I’ve had for who knows how long, and actually used up the 8-10 skeins, and I’ve got Willow out buying more so I can finish it. (She was picking up thread for her blankets.)
Last Thursday was “Pi Day” because it’s 3/14 (3.14). So I made a pork pie for dinner- with a suet crust. There was some leftover so I made a quiche for breakfast the next day. Then I made a blueberry and an apple pie with a butter/cream cheese crust.
Friday, the Ides of March, Kat and I were heading out to the SCA barony business meeting (Curia). We dropped books at the library, and then stopped at the gas station. On the way the car was making odd noises, and then as I tried to leave it died. Oh well. Thank goodness for Triple A, and being less than 5 miles from Winkles. The tow truck got there in about five minutes and Willow met us there. Gary was even there, waiting for another drop off, and Robert called this morning and told me he’s got it going again. I suppose as I approach 200,000 miles, I should expect more frequent problems. So, we didn’t make the curia, and Kat will be mailing in her Gold Key report from Birka.
Saturday there was a mini-Anime Con in Manchester that the girls went- meeting their friends for lunch, (I think it was Raye’s birthday). I was a little bummed because I had been planning to go to the Town Meeting, but since it wasn’t until evening, Willow dropped me off at and picked me up. I missed the very end, but that was OK. 10-noon was the basic house-keeping stuff. It was after lunch that things got interesting. Apparently last year we got rid of a police officer or chief, I don’t remember, but the discussion made it sound like we didn’t have one. Many years ago I remember one getting fired because he was “sexually harassing” the clerk- making her feel uncomfortable with chauvinist jokes. This is not something to which I pay a lot of attention. It seems that some people were disturbed by the process (as opposed to the outcome). They started going to selectmen’s meetings, meeting themselves, and apparently became known as “the old retired men with nothing better to do”, a title they seem to have embraced. They had put some articles into the town meeting to try to improve the process. I tend toward the opinion that the system looked like it was OK, and no matter how hard you try there will be the occasional problem, but clearly that was the issue for this meeting. I left after the ballots were being counted, but didn’t catch the result.
Megan told me that over in Wilton the bit drama was that the Catholic church was trying to sell the town it’s old building for a buck, which could have been good for the town, but they wanted to attach so many conditions to it that the town didn’t want it. I remember hearing that the Catholic Church wanted to divest itself of underutilized property, but didn’t know it was going to happen so close. I feel as with so many other issues- don’t they get what “change of ownership” means? It means you don’t get to say how the new owner uses it. Sigh.
I also heard an announcement there for the local women’s club, and thought it was for Sunday night, so borrowed Willow’s car to go down to it. There’s a meeting room in the library now, which is pretty cool. It turned out to be on Monday night, and I did catch it. The club does fund raisers to give scholarships to local students and holiday baskets. I hope I can get involved with that. I feel community should be local.
The girls went off to their mini con and had a good time. Willow sold five blankets, which is amazing for a con that size. Kat took some pictures- mostly movies of them dancing, which are very cute, but not good for sharing. My impression was that it reminded me a lot of the early SCA events I attended. Not that many people, but a lot of good feeling. Kat wore one of her “Lolli” dresses, and I didn’t recognize what character Willow was cosplaying, but they had fun. They got home earlier than I’d expected. Willow explained that the event might go until 10, but their friends didn’t.
It’s not just the Anime art form, while I like their friends, they are from a different generation. They get each other’s jokes, they were formed by the same macro-events. I was thinking that when I say that I grew up in the 50s and 60s, that says so much more than those two numbers might seem to say. We were the baby boom. In our world America was the good guys who joined wars to save people and win. We lived the “Ozzie and Harriet” image, but our parents built bomb shelters in our basements. I watched my mother keep her calm facade while my friends big brother was deployed to the Caribbean during the Cuban Missile crisis, and again as we watched our classmates numbers come up in the draft lottery. While we talked about being more aware of civil rights and male chauvenism and over population, where would we have gotten those ideas if not from Disney and the information we learned from the previous generation? We listened to the Beatles and Beachboys and Stones, and my brother went to Woodstock. I spent all my allowance on books and magazines that came out from the Occult Explosion. The 50s weren’t just hula hoops, and the 60s pet rocks, although we had them. A generation is a complex combination of many influences.
My parents were formed by the depression and the second world War. I expect that their parents were by WWI, the Flu, and Roaring Twenties. (I know my grandmother was a flapper.) I have to assume that my kids having been born and grown up in the 80s were the products of many influences that I didn’t even notice. Does a fish think about water? We tried so hard to bring our kids up without prejudice whether religious, racial, or gender based. Did we leave them too unguided? If you ask me about the 80s I remember Goonies, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, and plastic charm necklaces. I expect I know very little about it. To a certain extent I missed a lot of it because of being in the SCA. I highly suspect that my kids know more about history and the occult than the average person of their generation. I suppose there is both the overall cultural pressure and the family influences.
Sunday was Saint Patrick’s Day and we had the traditional Green Corned Beef dinner, although sadly, I had forgotten to get cabbage, so we only had carrots and potatoes and onions. We also killed our green food coloring. I tend to avoid food coloring these days since I know too much about it, but there’s power in the words “It’s a Tradition!”.
Tuesday morning when I woke up I thought it was fog, which we’ve had so much of as it’s gotten warmer, but when I put my contacts in, it was snowfall. There had been talk about the storm on facebook, but we don’t pay a lot of attention to other people getting excited about snow. First, it’s a crapshoot whether what’s predicted is going to show up, and then there’s the whole New Englander’s making fun of all the people who freak out at storm predictions (“Gotta get the bread and milk! Oh, my God! I’ve got to get the bread and milk!”) Now that we don’t have goats any more, we do try to make sure we have an extra gallon on hand so we don’t have to go out if we don’t have to. Since we don’t, we settle in, stoke up the woodstove and I make “comfort food”, stuffed potatoes, mac and cheese. I tried pork wrapped in bacon, but I wasn’t impressed. I think I’d rather just eat a rasher of bacon and have the pork chop be itself.
I continue to have fun with the new words from Grandiloquent Word of the Day: Shooler One who intrudes upon his neighbor, and forces an invitation to dinner, etc. I did already know “Crapulous” (which they had for St. Patrick’s Day), but not “Eroteme” the actual name for a question mark.
I’m listening to lectures on the History of Native Americans which frustrates the heck out of me. The professor doesn’t give a lot of specifics, just general trends. This is probably because he covered the ENTIRE pre-columbian period in the first lecture. Come ON! He mentioned that there were great empires and many different civilizations, each of which probably deserve its own course. The second one covered the Columbian Exchange- yes, big surprise, disease wiped out 80% of the population which changed the way everything worked, even without the whites coming in. Look what the Black Death did to Europe in the 14th century! We don’t tend to think about the colonial period much, and the third lecture took us up to the French and Indian War. I’m hoping that there will be more details as time passes. I suppose it’s a freaking huge subject and can’t possibly be covered as more than an overview in one course. I am waiting for supportive texts from the library (by which time I’ll probably be done and listening to something else). Still, I think that even this little is more than I knew before. I hadn’t realized how widely the French were installed all up and down the Mississippi, and around the great lakes in the Algonquin areas. I also think that there may be some reflection of the way the Saxons took over Britain with the way the French traders intermarried with the natives. This warrants more attention.
But I must close- I have just gotten the call that my van is fixed, so I’d better go dig out another car space. And I’m on the air again at 8 pm. (BTW, I think the show Starwolf did last week may have been the best ever!)
This is morning of the first day of Spring. Welcome to New England! I’m amused that the cats feel obliged to check out every path we dig.
“What we anticipate seldom occurs, what we least expect generally happens.” Benjamin Disraeli
“I have learned that particularly clever ideas do not always stand up under close scrutiny.”
― Elizabeth Peters, The Hippopotamus Pool