Thursday, March 23, 2017

Watching ducks and so much more



Last evening I caught these two ducks swimming on a puddle out in front of our house, the result of snow melt. Surely, a sign of spring. A few days ago, the first robins of the year pecked at the sodden lawn. Spring.

This morning, the puddle was frozen solid and Tom was out knocking snow off the car again. So we went shopping for a blender and a bathroom scale. My slacks are getting tight and it was time to face the reality. I shrieked when I weighed myself. 

So it's back to drinking my meals and counting calories. 

Wouldn't it be great if we could go on a diet and lose age?

--Louise, you're looking great!

--Thank you, I've lost ten years. I'm 64 again. I feel wonderful. And I remember all my old phone numbers again.

--How did you do it?

--Erasayear. It was easy. I had to sleep a month for every year I wanted to lose. Tom fed me through a tube inserted in my stomach. Now he's home sleeping until Christmas.
It's good for the marriage too!

ERASAYEAR. I'm on board.





Tuesday, March 21, 2017

25 Models for writing memoir now available!


Ann and I wrote this book together on Tuesday mornings while eating hot cross buns and drinking Dr. Peppers. You can read it the same way. It's available on Amazon.Com for $2.99. You can
preorder today for a March 31 publishing date.

Buy it and start a summer writing group with your friends. Write about your life and appreciate who you are. You won't be boring!



Saturday, March 11, 2017

Are you married yet, Maxwell?

Maxwell with his mom, Erica

Last week, was Maxwell's  17th birthday. We called him. 

I said, "Are you married yet?"

Without skipping a beat, he said, "Her name is Cinnamon and I met her in Las Vegas. I was just sending you
an invitation when you called."

Sometimes he says, "Aren't you dead yet?"

"You better hope I'm not dead yet, because if I'm dead before you marry, I'm spending your wedding night watching from the ceiling."

Fight fire with fire.

Years ago, we sat around Erica's table at another of Maxwell's birthday gigs and we asked him what his favorite year was, and he said, "The pre-existence, I ran a coffee shop there."

I reminded him that my sister, Joyce, who died at four months, shared his March 1 birthday.

"She's running the coffee shop while I'm here," he said.

Erica is Maxwell's high school English teacher. Neither one is the worse for wear.

I don't miss them at all.





Friday, March 3, 2017

Living like the Gaisfords

It occurred to me in the middle of the night, when most things occur to me, that anyone could pretend to be anywhere in the world on Facebook, especially if they're handy with Photoshop.

How do you know we're really in Nova Scotia, for example? How do you know we didn't take those ocean pictures on the banks of the great Salt Lake? How do you know we didn't hire some guy to play Father Christmas and take Tom's picture with him? How do you know we're not hiding out it in
an apartment in Ogden cutting and pasting our pictures in front of scenes we found on the internet?

Think about the Gaisfords who have been posting these pics of themselves in India. Any of us can paste ourselves in front of the Hindu Ajgabinath Temple in Sultanganj onto Facebook and say we're having a wonderful time. Especially if we don't have to pronounce Ajgabinath.

For that matter you can make a sign and hang it on yourself showing that you've won a marathon.
Or take a video of yourself on a Steinway Concert Grand on stage playing the Rach III and sweating (spray yourself) while Vladimir Ashkenazi plays the sound tract.

People, we can live extraordinary, creative lives and never get out of our pajamas.

Think about it.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Oscars and Escalas

The Cadillac Escala from it's best side: the side


I've actually written two blogs since my last post, but I haven't published them, because the tone was off, which usually means a little self-pity is fighting to be exposed.

Nothing is more boring than self-pity. Nothing. Writers beware.

So here is what I came away with from Oscar night besides the mortifying ending of it all: the Cadillac ads. Cadillac has a new sedan named after its highly successful SUV, the Escalade. The sedan is called Escala. It may be the ugliest car I've ever seen. I was breathless with its ugliness.
Those lights, front and back, look like dragon eyes. The back of the car looks like somebody's fat butt. I couldn't stop yammering about it, which was okay, because Tom can't hear me anyway.

And there's so much to yammer about on Oscar night: should the men wear Armani or Tom Ford? (I vote Tom Ford). Who was the best dressed? (I vote Nicole Kidman, but Emma Stone and others looked fabulous as well) Who looked disappointing? (Scarlett Johansson and Charlize Theron, who both know better, wore similar sacks that added twenty pounds to their figures, although Theron wore the most spectacular earrings. Why did she put her hair in a pony tail? What is this, 1955?) Did we like Jimmy Kimmel as a host? (Yes). Did we think Justin Timberlake was just a little manic on the runway? (Yes, he was popping in and out everywhere, but the opening number was sensational). Was Denzel Washington disappointed? (Yes). Do we ever get tired of seeing Meryl Streep on the front row? (No). Did I know anything about Ryan Gosling before I googled him on Oscar night? (No. He's from Canada, you know).

It's a good thing Nasty Louise doesn't tweet.

(But she blogs!)




Friday, February 17, 2017

Trash Talk

Here in Nova Scotia, the government takes trash seriously. You have to separate your trash. You have to. And you have to put it in see-through bags, dividing paper and cardboard from cans, glass and plastic.  You get to put out one opaque bag for waste and anything you might want to hide from your neighbors.

If you don't do this exactly right--say you put a Coke can in with the paper--then not only does the truck not pick up any of it, but the trash police, a squarely built, pleasant woman, comes to your door and tells you what mistakes you've made.

Okay, that's great, but the thing is they only collect the garbage every other Tuesday, unless there's a blizzard and then you have to wait another two weeks.

Here's the problem: you're allowed 5 large bags of trash every two weeks. One black, waste, and the other four clear bags divided between recyclables and paper. If you move into a place and are buying supplies for your house, you're going to have lots of extra cardboard and paper. Then you miss trash day, because you 're clueless--

Our basement is filled with bagged trash.

We thought of dumping it in dumpsters behind businesses, but guess what, they're all locked. You never see a waste can out in front of a store, because they don't want your waste. Take it home and put it in your own can.

This means we have to find the dump, named Larkspur Meadows. And don't think you can blithely dump things there. They, too, inspect the clear bags.

Every other week, people? Really?




Saturday, February 11, 2017

Coldest Day of the Year




We decided to have dinner at the Fo'c'sle Pub tonight. It is the oldest pub in Nova Scotia (since 1764) and, serendipitously, it turned out to be the annual Drama Society's Benefit night, known as the Coldest Day of the Year. It's celebrated every year on the second Saturday of February. Both rooms were crammed with people and a different band or choral group performed every hour. The Drama Society folks collected a ten dollar cover charge from each person and also sold raffle tickets for an hourly drawing. 

"How do you get to be in the Drama Society?" I asked Esther, the club secretary "I want to be in it."

"What can you do?" she asked me.

As I was thinking about it, she said, "Can you write?" 

"As a matter of fact . . . and I can paint too. I'll do anything. I have no friends." She took down my name and email address. The man standing behind her told me about April workshops for writers, designers and whathaveyou.  No way I'm missing that.

A large family group had two empty chairs at their table and invited us to sit. I chatted with the woman on my left, who was a speech therapist working mostly with rehabilitation for stroke victims and the like. Tom spoke with her husband who worked on the oil rigs off Newfoundland--three weeks on and three weeks off. 

I think all 10,000 citizens of Chester were at that pub. It was heavenly. Tom and I danced to some Ceilidh music which seemed to be something between a jitterbug and square dancing. I know we doh see dohed. Much laughter and clapping. Best night of the whole three months we've been here. Absolutely the best.

Shows what you can do with Excedrin, a back brace, and raised adrenalin levels. Whoohaaa.

P.S. Tom wants me to say that he is not as retarded as the photo makes him look. Duh.