January 2010 Archives

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rainbow out the window at work today, missing the middle shot (taken with the iPhone)

I never thought it would happen, honestly.  I swear.  I have always been one of those Gimme my REAL newspaper, you can't curl up in bed on a rainy day with a laptop in the same way you can read the paper in bed Sunday morning newspapers have to be PAPER.  And books?!  Don't even mention electronic books to me.  Really.  Puhlease.  They can't come in the bathtub; no pages to smell and feel and turn; no row of spines on the shelf reminding me how much I loved reading them; no margins to scribble notes in.  The horror.  Seriously. 

But there I was last night in bed, the NPR.org app open on my iPhone.  I read about Britain's effort to curb binge drinking and Colbert's sponsorship of the US speed skating team, and just a little bit about Haiti (too sad).  I let my newspaper subscription lapse months ago, because literally months would go by without me reading it.  In print, anyway.  I read the local paper online a couple of times a week, thanks to the email updates they send me.

So, I don't know, last night it just hit me that I am a total convert.  I don't need hard copies of everything when I can fit it all on my hard drive.  I don't need to waste all that paper when I can read it online.  You know?  And the electronic device may be a little cold, but I'm seeing it as a way to have so much more with so much less hassle.  Part of me is all Hello?  Who ARE you?

I used to work in a doctors' office, back in the day when we used computers, but only to print stuff out.  Part of my job was FILING.  Filing papers.  Like, in alphabetical order and everything.  And working for two neurosurgeons, there were a lot of papers: MRI and CT and X-Ray reports; Face Sheets; summaries of medical histories, illnesses, injuries, and operations to fix them; dictated letters after each patient checkup; Triplicate prescriptions; Insurance approvals and bills and OMG the insurance paperwork - incredible.  Our complex wouldn't recycle paper, and one of the doctors would get so disgusted by the huge stacks of paper that we went through and he'd say, in his Massachusetts accent, Holy shit, the trees are cryin!  And, really, they are.  And I'm not sad to trade my aesthetic preference for paper in for however many trees will be spared if I continue to go paperless.  Also, my bookshelf looks pretty ok with those framed photos and stuff along with the books, so extra room is not a bad thing.   

So, okay.  I am NOT for getting rid of books entirely, of course.  Not even.  Or magazines or CDs or newspapers, or any other thing that can come in an electronic format.  But I do think it's going to be the case that I save the paper versions of things for the super-cool stuff, like my teeny, 1910 copy of Write It Right, by Ambrose Bierce (even though there is a free download available!), or my 1959 copy of Shakespeare and Company, by Sylvia Beach. I'm one of those people who doesn't even print out my receipt at the gas pump to save paper, and I've gone paperless on all my bills.  A Kindle may seem too sterile at first blush, but everyone who holds one is holding the thanks and huge relief of one more tree.  As soon as they come out with one I can take in the bath, I'm totally there.



Alex walked in after school today, Mom?  Can I send a text to donate money to Haiti?  It adds ten bucks to the phone bill, and the phone company donates all the money. 

Of course you can, I said.  Please do.  And thank you.

"U.S. cell phone users have contributed more than $5 million in $10 increments to the Red Cross for Haiti disaster relief, by far the largest outpouring of support via mobile devices in history."

Rather than send a text, I chose Direct Relief.  They are a stand-up company.

I've been following the harrowing news reports on NPR.org, but it's so very difficult to read, and I have such a hard time looking at the photos.  All those bodies, and the tiny ones among them hurting to look at even more.  I read about an eight year old girl in a makeshift hospital.  Her whole family is gone.  Eleven people.  And I look at my own eight year old girl across the dinner table tonight as she tells us, over her bowl of homemade chicken soup, what she wants to do for the science fair.  None of her ideas are experiments, really.  They're inventions.  But her eyes are so bright and she's gesturing with her spoon as she talks about hooking up a camera to a remote-controlled car or seeing who in the school is the strongest by building some kind of lifting machine that she can keep adding weight to.  She will invite everyone via the school intercom system to test it out when classes are over with one afternoon next week, even the fifth graders.  And suddenly I am crying for how broken this other girl must feel.  This other little girl just like mine, this utterly orphaned girl, who maybe a couple of nights ago was making her family laugh at the supper table as she talked about what she wanted to do.

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Looks like I really do need to spring for that AGD brush.

Actually, I am the one knitting the scarf, but I made her be in the picture because my hair looks even worse than hers.  I'm happy that Willow is happy with her new doll, and I'm happy to knit it a scarf, but honestly, some dolls skeeve me out.  It must be the no-blinking thing. 

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I had this weird dream last night that involved water and scuba diving and really cool steampunk kinda stuff.  One part of it was Willow, standing on an indoor platform with her hands held up above her head like a diver.  A diving board diver, not a scuba diver.  There was a man with a clipboard who told her to hold still, and then he made a calculation based on the angle of her pressed-together hands and drew an X on the floor and said that if she dove from that spot she'd, go up seven feet in the air and land right here.

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Mini pancakes.
Medium pancakes.
Traditional sized pancakes.
Heart shaped pancakes.

Made with melted butter in the batter.  Not gluten-free.  Served with the syrup that costs more, ounce per ounce (I think) than the good tequila.

Partner since June 2006




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