Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Yoi and Double Yoi and say "hi" to The Chief!

The world is definitely a less colorful place without you,

But your legend will live on!

Monday, February 25, 2008

The joys ......

... of living in a college town. Those of you in An Arbor, Chapel Hill, College Station and other similar venues will probably be able to relate.

I'm watching a tape and knitting at 2:30 am on Sunday morning. (Yes, I keep odd hours on the weekend.) Our drapes are drawn, and the outside lights are out. We live in a small townhouse development that is far enough away from the campus that we don't have oddles of students around. Apparently it doesn't matter. There I was minding my own business, and the doorbell rings. I'm stunned. The doorbell! At first I think, maybe it's the newspaper carrier. (He's a middle aged fellow, with a disabled son. He delivers papers so he can stay home with his kid.) I'm thinking maybe he was delivering the Sunday paper and his car broke down, or he hit someone's vehicle or something. So I go to the back door and turn on the porch light. Nothin'. The bell rings again! Front door! Our door is solid, no way to see who is there, unless I peep out the front window (and turn on the porch light), or open the door, which leaves me very vulnerable.

Now I do have a husband, who is upstairs doing goodness knows what, and who apparently has not heard the bell. I run upstairs and say "Someone is ringing the door bell!" "You're kidding!??" As if to confirm that I'm not crazy or dreaming, the bell rings again, now for the third time. He says, "Don't open the door!" Well, duh! Look out the upstairs window and see who it is....well I can't see the person. Bell rings yet again! So I actually OPEN the upstairs window, it is in the teens by the way, and call out "Can I help you?" It is a young fellow, in his twenties probably. He says "Is Roger "Something" here?" I tell him I'm sorry but he has the wrong unit. "Do you know where he lives?" What? Do I look like directory assistance? I ask if he knows the unit number. Even a few digits would help. No, he doesn't. So, genius, why not just choose a house at random and ring the bell in the middle of the night. Great idea! Pretty much par for the course in a college town. I tell him I cannot help him, and he apologizes profusely "for bothering you", and walks away. He is clearly lost, and he is also shaky--frightened, drunk, drugs, I couldn't tell.

Now, though, I suspect it wasn't quite so random. He probably saw the lights and figured we were awake, however, unless I was in dire straits, I would not just knock on a strange door. I certainly hope it was no more nefarious than idiocy, which is in no small supply here. I wanted to ask why he didn't just call "Roger". But didn't get the chance.

I debated about calling the police, but really didn't want to wait for an officer to come and take a report. It was "THON" weekend and the town was packed with visitors.

Lest you think this is something out of the ordinary (people just randomly coming to the door and asking where "someone" lives), I once answered the back door, on a week night, only to find a young couple in formal wear. It was 11:00 pm, and I was in my jammies. The couple were as shocked to see me as I was to see them. They were looking for a party, and were told the host had a "silver" car parked in front. Our neighbor at the time had a silver car, but I didn't think she was having a party either. They just picked a house.

And to add to the fun, about two months ago, I came home to a "Code Red" message on our answering machine. It was from the local police, alerting the residents in our area that there was an armed and dangerous person being pursued in our area. At first I thought it was one of those robo-calls, and nearly blew it off, but as I listened it because obvious that it was an officer reading from a script. It spooked the hell out of me, I can tell you.

So the fun just never ends.......not even in the wee hours of the morning.

Friday, February 08, 2008

A potato's a potato......

I've had any number of serious things in my head today, and I could write a long post full of myself, and flight of ideas, but I won't, I'll only pick one for now.

It started with the Yarn Harlot "musing" about how people can say things "electonically" that they wouldn't say in person. Well, duh, we (in the higher ed arena where this monster took shape) recognized that for the double edged sword that it is. When you post to the internet three things are true: 1) It's there forever, no takee backsees 2) It's public, not private: 3) NO VOICE, it takes a mighty clever writer to put voice in electronic communications. Maybe you would prefer the world to be a sweet place were folks do not feel compelled to make negative (however mild) comments. (An aside: I for one rarely read blog comments. Particularly those that can reach into the hundreds. How many times can you read "Wow, I'm first!") But as for the negative comments...well, say hello to the tin man there in Oz. For any number of reasons someone may feel compelled to make a comment that curves away from the "popular". (I can't help but wonder what would happen if the blog was an attack on Bush, and one poster said "Whoa, let's be reasonable with the name calling and piling on." I shudder to think.) One other time comes to mind. It was, again, the Harlot's blog describing a plane trip. The guy in a seat in the same rack, told her he was uncomfortable with her knitting needles (socks on dpns). Even after she explained that she had been cleared through security, he was still nervous. Ok, I admit, he sounds like a nut job, but one of the commenters thought it must have been Rush Limbaugh (Stephanie snapped a photo of black wing tips) because "he's a weenie" (wimp or something like that). Now I have no particular love for Limbaugh. His brand of attack politics distresses me, but in this context it was a bizarre non sequitur. The point, however, is that that particular comment, an ad hominem attack, didn't even cause a ripple. I guess attacks on unpopular personalities are fine, but not negative comments about socks. I'll tell you it has me scratching my head.

Now lets talk, if not ugly, but odd. When I made these I thought they were hysterical. (Still do.) I brought them into work to show a colleague. Another colleague saw them, and asked "Who are they for?" I answered my sister and her boyfriend. "How old are they? Seven?" Do these people look seven?

But do they look like they have a sense of humor? That second colleague apparently thought the hats were weird and that only a child would be caught dead wearing it. I could have taken great umbrage. Instead, I just smiled and thought how glad I was that I had a person with a sense of humor in my family. (My sister squealed with laughter when she opened the package.)

My advice. Get over yourself...whoever you are!