Once again we’ve had an incredibly quiet week. I’ve spent most of the time working on the book, (and sent out a couple of articles, a bio for my painting in an art show, and to go with my ceramics over at Olaf’s shop) although I’ve been trying really hard not to spend too much time at the computer (and usually have a towel rolled up under my wrist when I do. So I’m not hurting as much- just enough to remind me to be careful. If it hurts when you do something- don’t do it! Right?
Today I got in 7 more completed questionnaires and requests for 39 more. I begin to feel confident that I will make the 500 that I aimed at. Of course, since it takes at least a half hour each to process them BEFORE writing the book, that’s a bit daunting.
Steve got the data base working so Kat can input the basic information in for me. That’ll probably be at least a hundred hours of work for her too- but it will allow me to give percentages, and make it more acceptable to the academics. Only when they’re in will I actually know how many I’ve got. I’ve been amazed at the number of people who mistake my saying that I hope this will help people to be able to safely come “out of the closet” (by which I meant in the future, after the book has had an impact) to mean that I was asking people to “come out” for the book. I suppose if you are “in” because it could cost your your job, your kids, or whatever, you’ll be cautious.
It’s been raining for the last couple of days, which has finished off the last of the blooms on the spring bulbs and forsythia. On the other hand, the french lilacs are coming out, and the violets are blooming around the bleeding hearts, and the trees have real leaves, so that’s pretty cool.
Thursday Steve Raskind came up and took me off to Vermont. There’s a really cool club up there (about 2 hours north of us, so about 3 and a half hours drive for him) where they were having a folk concert. There were three acts touring to promote the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival. He could have gone to hear them down closer, but loved the club, so went there, and took me with him. We had to leave here about 4, and got there about 7, ate dinner at a lovely, kind of yuppie restaurant really near there. (He had scallops with spinach fettuccini, I had curried lamb) We tried the local beers, and I got a bit tiddly after about two ounces- as usual, so we had dessert to (first time I’d ever tasted tiramisu, I must learn to make it) so I’d be able to walk out straight.
The club is called middle earth and is really cool looking- it’s below ground level and all around the edges there are things that look like trees with twisted roots and branches (made of painted cement over chicken-wire, but it still looked cool), and there was lots of real wood panelling too which helped make it feel more real- of course, how often do the vines on a tree trunk for Celtic interlace? But what the heck.
Then the three acts came out- there was a fellow Pat who had a great face and played his guitar flat on his lap- which I’d never seen before. There was Ellis, who also had a really cute face, my favorite song of hers was her ode to coffee. Then there was Red Molly, which was a group of three singers who made lovely country type harmonies- and occasionally they’d join in with each others performances. The energy was lovely.
I got kind of itchy because I hadn’t brought any drawing materials- but their “tour mommy” got me some, and I did fairly rough pictures of them (because it was dark away from the stage, and of course they were moving). I was able to make an extra of Pat and gave it to him, which I think they liked. My ability to catch a likeness was “on” that night.
During intermission, because the tour is promoting the Folk music festival, they asked who’d traveled the farthest and Steve won that hands down. Sadly, the prize was something he’d have loved to use- free tickets to the four day folk festival. But it was for two, and it was the first week of Pennsic so I couldn’t go with him, and he doesn’t know anyone else who both likes folk music and he can put up with for four days- so I think he’s going to donate them to a local radio station. Sad.
The kids had joked at Steve that he had to get me home by 1 am, and he did. I had a bad moment as I directed him on the back route home which I know by heart, but suddenly I wondered whether New Road, which is dirt was in good repair. The road crew is still working up on Pinnacle (there was a lot of damage this spring). But luckily it was just fine, and we did get in by one- and I tossed him out so he’d get home by 2:30. (eep)
Friday night Morgan came up and crashed. Saturday the Wolf Argent company (14th c. reenactors) came up to do a march through the woods in period gear. Initially there had been going to be 13 of them, but people kept dropping out until there were only 5 by the time they arrived on Saturday morning. They got into their garb, hefted their pikes on their shoulders, and headed off up the hill. Luckily the weather was gorgeous that day, and the got to picnick in the apple orchard- which is in full bloom. But the joy of the “forced march” seems to have paled without the full company, so they quit early (or maybe it was the black flies, which have arrived in full appetite), and went back home to do usual Saturday chores.
They did admire the hall and offered to come help clean it and have events there.
We did a dump run too, and I was all excited about throwing out all the accumulated junk in the back hall, but I got bogged down in one of those mixed boxes that had to be sorted, and that stalled out. I didn’t wake up early enough for a Sunday dump run because the pikers at the recycling center only keep it open until noon on Sundays.
By Saturday afternoon Steve was bored again, and came back up. (The man needs a social life!) I discovered that he had never been to a Drive in before (in his life!). So we popped some corn and grabbed some drinks, and headed for the “geek-gasm double feature”. They were playing two Marvel comics movies at Milford on one of the screens: Spiderman III and Ghost Rider. Spiderman was pretty good- of course I don’t like it when the movie contradicts the comic story line I read when I was a kid, but other than that, it wasn’t a bad movie. Ghost Rider has been totally panned in all the reviews we’d heard, but we all liked it a lot. The special effects were dynamite, and the story was well done. No, Nicholas Cage didn’t look like the Johnny Blaze in the comic, but what the heck? The story was a wonderful parable of a man having to deal with with a situation that he’s gotten himself into (without knowing what it would mean before hand- Duh he sold his soul to the devil, yathink?), and the situation is painful and denies him a normal life, but also gives him abilities that he could use to help others, and he has to decide whether he’s going to struggle to get out of it or deal with it. (I see it as an analogy of a shaman.) Maybe the people who didn’t like it don’t relate to that. Also, I loved the music. You can hear the final credits music over a bunch of the best images on youtube here:
Steve and I got the back seat so we’d have more leg room, so we did some loud kissing on the backs of our hands to tease them, when they told us “no funny business in the back seat”.
My headshots came from the photography studio at Ecumenicon. One is kind of, well, it looks like a “glam shot”, like I don’t realize I’m 55, and I’m trying to look younger (sure, I do, but that’s still kind of, well, far too much skin for someone my age and income). The other looks a trifle supercilious, but then, since it’s for writing or speaking, a “I know something you don’t know” look is OK, as long as they feel I’m going to share it with them.
Sunday Willow took advantage of the sun and she and Kat went over to the beach for a while. Then Monday they went over to a local graveyard to lie in the sun (in Willow’s case) and sit in the shade in Kat’s. They took some more cool pictures of gravestones.
I rather like this one of Kat’s black lace parasol among the flowers.
And this one with Kat’s shadow (again with parasol, you can’t imagine she’d let the sun touch her lily white skin, would you?).
Willow enjoyed the sun, and was getting into the soft moss and grass on her bare feet, but stepped on a log which was more rotten than it looked and ripped a hunk out of the bottom of her foot, so she’s been limping ever since.
Star’s been very busy on the computer all week- he’s been asked to do character development by someone. And he was finishing a story- he actually passed up the Drive-in to finish it on Saturday.
Mark and Bruce came by this afternoon. They’d just gotten back from a trip to Maryland to pick up the stuff Mark had gotten while he was working down there. They’d stopped at Oskgar’s on the way up- they looked exhausted. Mark had bought two futon bed/couches and while Bruce can find room in his apartment for one, Mark gave the other to Willow to replace her old one which is pretty much dead. They looked wiped- at least when we went down for a con we get a couple days there before turning around- they only got furniture moving.
I didn’t have a lot of news this weekend, so I figure I’ll pass on this game- you take the letters of your name (ignore duplicates) and this is supposed to describe you. Whatever. (it’s a game and it’s free).
A You can be very quiet when you have something on your mind.
B You are always cautious when it comes to meeting new people.
C You definitely have a partier side in you, don’t be shy to show it.
D You have trouble trusting people.
E You are a very exciting person.
F Everyone loves you.
G You have excellent ways of viewing people.
H You are not judgmental.
I You are always smiling and making others smile.
K You like to try new things.
L Love is something you deeply believe in.
M Success comes easily to you.
N You like to work, but you always want a break.
O You are very open-minded.
P You are very friendly and understanding.
Q You are a hypocrite.
R You are a social butterfly.
S You are very broad-minded.
T You have an attitude, a big one.
U You feel like you have to equal up to people’s standards.
V You have a very good physique and looks.
W You like your privacy.
X You never let people tell you what to do.
Y You cause a lot of trouble.
Z You’re always fighting with someone
That’s it until next Wednesday.
Oh, and holidays you may want to celebrate this week:
17 Ascension Thursday & Pack Rat Day (that’s me!) & Rubber Band Day
18 Itntl Museum Day and Natl. Pizza Party Day & Visit your Relatives Day
19 Armed Forces Day & Bike to Work Day & Band-aid Day
20 Flower Day Good Neighbor Day & Pick Strawberries Day
21 Strawberries and Cream Day & Natl Wait staff Day
22 Buy a Musical Instrument Day & Vanilla Pudding Day
23 Bob Day, Jazz Day, Penny Day, Body Painting Day & World Turtle Day