Dr. Beads

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Post Office Increases Holiday Stress

I asked for postage stamps at a local drugstore recently. The bighaired cashier rang up the purchase, pulled a packet of stamps out of her cash drawer, and chirped, "Madonna and child!"

Non-plussed, I asked if there were any other type of stamp available. She semi-huffed, "It is Christmas."

I replied, "I don't do Christmas," and left with my overly religious stamps.

Then I went a few doors down, to a real post office, and bought Chanukah stamps. I figure the two designs cancel each other out.

Comments Department is Now Open...Sort Of

You can now post comments, if you first register.

Monday, November 29, 2004

We All Scream for Gumby!

I was bribing my son to get him to finish his homework before we had to go on an errand.

"I'll buy you gum," I said.

"How much would gum be?" he asked.

"About as much as Pokey," I replied.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Wide World of Snores

I'm not fond of team sports. (That's an understatement.)*

However, I do see the point of athletic events that pit the individual against his or her previous best efforts, against others at the top of their game, etc.

So I've been honing my skills in my particular event.

After training for years, I'm now ready to step forward and try out for the Olympic sleep squad.

- - - - -
*MEGO** when anyone tries to talk to me about team sports. Conversations usually go like this:

"Your team lost the Big Game!"

"Huh? Team? Game?"

"YOU know, the BIG GAME! Your team lost -- nyah, nyah!"

"Um, I'm not on any sports team. Are you thinking of someone else?"

"No, YOUR TEAM lost."

"I don't have a team."

"The team that you should be supporting LOST THE GAME last weekend."

"Really? I was running errands last weekend. Oop, I have a meeting to go to."

And so forth.

- - - - -
** MEGO = my eyes glaze over

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Nipping at Your Fender

Today is the first day of the season that I had to scrape frost off my windshield.

If only I had had flavored syrup with me. "Hey, kids! Snowcones!"

Monday, November 22, 2004

Devil's Dictionary, Redux

I recommend reading The Republican Dictionary, recently posted by Nation editor Katrina vanden Heuvel.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Notes from the Underage

The other day, my son dragged our new pet food bin over to show me the bug larvae comfortably ensconced in the channel on the underside of the lid.

The bin had been labeled "airtight."

My son evaluated the product succinctly: "Airtight, my liposuctioned buttocks!"

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Today is "Stop Being So Negative" Day

Today is "Stop Being So Negative" Day.

Naturally, my friends and I are boycotting the occasion.

Sometime soon I think I'll do some shopping I enjoy, though.

Not shoes. Definitely not shoes.

I do like to shop for food, books, and, of course, beads, beads, and more beads.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

She Stoops to Whimper

As a follow-up to my mention of Lands' End (owned by Sears), the big business news today is that K-Mart is buying Sears.

What the hell am I going to do with my Lands' End gift certificates now? Buy cheap tiki accessories?

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Who Will Rid Me of These Turbulent School Dreams?

I continue to have nightmares that are based in a vague, yet menacing, school setting. I thought that I'd be rid of them by now, 20 years since my last exam.

Given a chance, I'd gladly trade school dreams for falling dreams. At least with falling dreams, once I wake up, I know I'm all right, and I can fall asleep again easily. With school dreams, I can feel haunted for hours or even days.

I once told a doctor (not my personal doctor) about having bothersome school dreams, and she recommended that I go shopping for shoes.

I don't like shopping for shoes.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Tattoo Who?

I saw my hair guy Saturday. (Hi, Hair Guy!)

He shared a quiz about arts event etiquette. One of the answered indicated that, as far as clothing is concerned, anything goes for people attending arts events; furthermore, tattoos and piercings are not required.

I replied that, when it comes to drawing lines, I draw the line at...drawing lines. On me, anyway.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

She Stoops to Banter

On my way home from the airport yesterday, I stopped at a Trader Joe's. (If you don't have one of these wonderful markets in your area, I recommend moving to an area that is more enlightened.)

Trader Joe's continues to be, for food, what Crate and Barrel and Lands' End used to be for housewares and clothing, respectively: i.e., a bit out of the ordinary, yet practical, and reasonably priced. (Crate and Barrel has gone into frou-frou mode, apparently in order to compete with the yups who shop at Williams-Sonoma; and Lands' End, now owned by Sears, has moved away from practical clothing that was nevertheless largely appropriate for white-collar workers toward a combination of sweaters-and-longjohns-for-snowy-mornings and holiday-clothing-for-the-Midwestern-holiday-junkie. (Sort of like Sears, but without the hardware or the thin, midriff-exposing polyester "tops.")

At TJ's, I searched diligently through the cheese section before I found what I was looking for, about 6 feet from where it had been just a couple of weeks before.

As I did a little "let's trade places" dance with another shopper, she said, in humorous exasperation, "I've been looking for this [pointing to a cheese] for five minutes! They've moved everything!"

I agreed, holding up the cheese I'd finally found, and said, "This used to be at the other end." She nodded, smiling, and said "Exactly."

I continued, "I think they're trying to make sure that we're alert...and worthy." She smiled. I smiled.

Each of us continued shopping, knowing that we had passed the test.

Friday, November 12, 2004

What Country, Friend, Is This?

I have spent the last two days in Southern California on business. There are way too many freeways. There are also way too many cars on the freeways, even in the middle of the day. I sometimes think that there are more cars on the road than there are people driving said cars, which implies that the threshold for using the carpool lane should be on the order of 1.2 people, rather than the current 2.

Air is not supposed to be thick and gray.

I'm so glad I don't live in Southern California.

I did live in Southern California for several months in mid-kidhood and for several months in early adulthood, so I'm not basing my opinions on the one business trip, or even on the two dozen or so previous business trips.

Northern California, I kiss your briefly rain-drenched shores.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Lacking a Novel, I Blog a Nightmare

Last night I had a very involved, annoying dream whose cast of characters included President Bush (who was getting married and seemed overly eager for gifts), my in-laws (who were going to the wedding, but were late and possibly lost), and a particularly odious ex-boyfriend (who invited himself along).

If anyone wants to turn this into either a screenplay or a novel, have your people call my people. And by "my people," I don't mean my in-laws.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Help With Getting the Jaw Back Up, Please? Hello?

Ashcraft has resigned from the Cabinet.

The New York Times > Washington > Attorney General and Commerce Secretary Resign From Cabinet

My favorite line: "'The objective of securing the safety of Americans from crime and terror has been achieved,'" Mr. Ashcroft wrote in a five-page, handwritten letter to Mr. Bush, The A.P. said."

I can't get my jaw up off the floor.

Cultural Remix

If you are interested in learning more about how Big Media and Microsoft are working harder to stave off creativity and innovation than they are working to develop quality products we'll willingly purchase, may I recommend the writings and presentations of Lawrence Lessig.

I was lucky enough to attend one of his presentations on "Cultural Remix" recently, and thoroughly enjoyed it up to the moment that one of my kids paged me out of the meeting (the reasons for the page remain opaque to me even now).

Saturday, November 06, 2004

The Incredibles, Plus Popcorn

Today I took David and two of his friends to see "The Incredibles." I recommend it to movie-goers of all ages*. I laughed so hard that David elbowed me in embarrassment.

We're currently waiting for my fourteen-year-old daughter, who, for purposes of this blog, shall be referred to as Lisa. She should be coming out of the googleplex any minute after seeing "The Grudge." I studiously avoid scary movies, but that doesn't hold true for my family members. I just hope I can persuade Lisa not to tell me about the movie.

*(that is, to people who can sit still during a movie and don't cry and don't keep loudly whispering, "What was that she said? Why were people laughing just now?" and so forth)

Friday, November 05, 2004

Ignoring Impending Doom, with the Help of the Son and the Dog

Ignoring the widespread sense of impending doom, I choose today to document some mundane, life-affirming tidbits.

My son, David, has discovered a way to make our dog into a large burrito, with the comforter as the tortilla and the dog as the filling. Our dog's ancestors presumably came from Wales. Talk about your world wraps.

The deep moaning sound we encourage our dog to make when we press lightly on his ribcage is similar to the sound the elliptical training machine makes when we increase the resistance level.

What a tangled web we weave when first we decide to pick all the mushrooms out of the front lawn.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Spare Box of Lawyers?

Anyone have a spare box of lawyers? I'd like to encourage you to donate it to the Dems.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Goodbye to All That

Goodbye to civil liberties, a semi-objective Supreme Court, environmental protections, separation of church and state, education, and science.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Election Fraud

It looks like the Republican machine has, once again, stolen the national election.

Exit polls, the economy, the senseless death and destruction in Iraq, the crumbling stature of the United Stated throughout the world, our increasingly fragile civil liberty...none of it matters to Shrub, Rove, Cheney, Rice, et al.

Florida (and, it appears, Ohio) were quietly shifted to the Repug side through chicanery and fraud.

I am sickened.

Got Ennui?

Who could possibly be bored in 1930s Berlin?

The Cabinet of Doom!

For purposes of this blog, I'll refer to my son as David. He's ten years old, but wiser and far funnier than his years. He helps keep me sane.

About two years ago, David was looking around the kitchen for some art supplies. He knew that my husband or I had probably hidden the gooey items in an upper cabinet to keep small hands from making huge, unsupervised messes.

David: Mom, where are the paints?
Dr. Beads: Where are they usually?
David (striking a dramatic pose and pointing to an upper cabinet): In the cabinet of DOOOOOOMMMM!!!

I laughed so hard I thought I would fall on the floor. Fortunately, the kitchen table was conveniently in the way, so I just crumpled up over it and enjoyed a long bout of hysterics.

Election Problems

My best friend was nearly prevented from voting today by a poll worker who claimed that my friend had been sent an absentee ballot (he hadn't). The same poll worker tried to pretend that my friend wasn't eligible for a provisional ballot, then apparently mishandled the provisional ballot that was grudgingly supplied when my friend insisted on his rights.

My friend contacted the media.

Are we a banana republic? Did I mention that my friend is ethnic?

If you experience problems trying to vote in today's election:
1.) contact the Election Protection Hotline:
2.) post on the Democratic Underground site

Are We Doomed Yet?

This being election day (excuse me, I mean "select the electors day") in the U.S., I thought I'd abandon all hope and start a blog.

Today, my friends and I are asking "Are we doomed yet?" just as we have asked for many months. If Kerry doesn't win the Presidential election, then it may be time to buy a year's worth of canned goods and hunker down in the house (or apartment, as the case may be) and hope that this country is strong enough to last for the next four years.