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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in wordmad's LiveJournal:

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Tuesday, October 5th, 2010
4:54 pm
Spirit Day
Originally posted by neo_prodigy at Spirit Day

It’s been decided. On October 20th, 2010, we will wear purple in honor of the 6 gay boys who committed suicide in recent weeks/months due to homophobic abuse in their homes at at their schools. Purple represents Spirit on the LGBTQ flag and that’s exactly what we’d like all of you to have with you: spirit. Please know that times will get better and that you will meet people who will love you and respect you for who you are, no matter your sexuality. Please wear purple on October 20th. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and schools.

RIP Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh (top)
RIP Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase (middle)
RIP Asher Brown and Billy Lucas. (bottom)

REBLOG to spread a message of love, unity and peace.

4:42 pm
Stop the Takeover
I'm hosting my first-ever calling party this Sunday, October 10th, for Move On.org. We're calling members in districts represented by Democratic congresspersons to get them to help in the campaign. If you are interested in helping and live anywhere near Sykesville, MD (or have a clue where it is), please sign up at


All you need is a cell phone, a voice and a bit of an appetite. (I'll be serving manicotti.)

Also, I'll be going to the Jon Stewart rally in DC on the 30th. Anyone in range who'd like to carpool, just let me know.

Current Mood: determined
Thursday, July 15th, 2010
10:57 am
Is bunnage the new cleavage?
I am the type of person who averts my eyes IMMEDIATELY when I see a man/boy with his boxers showing over jeans two sizes too large. I admit it gives me gas to imagine at any moment said jeans and boxers will slip to his knees and show stuff I don't really wanna see.

It seems to me that a similar fashion statement is catching on with women and even young girls. No, they don't show their undies over their belt line, but they wear the bikini-est (lowest cut) jeans they can find and, even without bending over, affect the good-old-boy-plumber's crack-in-the-back derriere.

I've always liked cleavage. To me it's the ultimate symbol of womanhood. (You got 'em, you flaunt 'em--natch.) I was a little shocked at seeing so much "bunnage" showing up at our summer program downtown, but I must admit, a modest crack looks rather endearing.

The only thing that worries me is, as with cleavage, how many young men are content to just look and admire?
Thursday, April 29th, 2010
10:32 am
Writer's Block: Too scary!!
Was there something you were afraid of as a child that just seems silly to you now?
We used to go to Herring Park when I was little. It was named after a little creek or "run" that ran through the park. There was a wooden plank bridge about a car-width wide over it and a much larger concrete bridge for cars about three storeys above that. Sounds would echo off the big bridge, and it made the rush of the creek sound even louder than it was. I was afraid to cross the wooden bridge because I thought I could slip through the cracks between the planks into this rushing torrent though the cracks were no more than a half-inch wide.
Saturday, December 19th, 2009
1:09 pm
snow and cats
I haven't posted for a long time. So much going on, I can barely get a moment to answer my e-mail, and I haven't the patience to wait for my Facebook page to download.

You'd think being semi-retired would free up a lot of time, but that's just the problem. I no longer have an excuse to say no to myself about things I've been wanting to do/learn/make/repair but couldn't because of kids, work, etc.

Anyway, today it's snowing blankets, and I've nowhere to go, so I thought I'd tell all you cat lovers out there about our red and white DSH, Shiro. He's a tad overweight, highly loveable and adventurous. When he goes outside, he likes to hold court and/or direct squirrel traffic on a ledge behind our pool. On sunny days, when it gets too hot, he hides in the cover of Mike's riding mower or goes under the pool deck through this little hole in the back.

He's not fond of the cold or wet, but, today, I guess he mistook the blinding white of the storm for sunshine, shook his paws, and went out anyway. The snow was at least six inches, but he plowed on to the shelter of his "cave." This meant digging a hole through a drift by the fence to get to a gap in the mesh screen that he's fashioned for himself over the years.

It's been three hours now, and he hasn't poked his head out yet, so I suppose he's hunting mice and voles in there, maybe a chipmunk or two. We did clear a path for him and will have to redo that soon, as the accumulation is over a foot now. I worry about him, but, as Mike says, he does have those extra inches of pudge to keep him warm.

It's almost like having kids again.
Sunday, September 6th, 2009
10:42 am
Anybody else going to the pro-public option Washington March, Sunday, September 13th? Meetcha at the Lincoln Memorial at noon for a leisurely and dignified (hah!) stroll to Capitol Hill. I gotta make me one of those signs I saw in Yesthattom's HC summit in NJ: LOVE THY NEIGHBOR, SUPPORT HEALTH CARE REFORM.
Thursday, August 27th, 2009
10:00 am
Feeling very capitalistic
My 401 K just stopped hemorrhaging $$$$$. Does that mean the 'recession' is over?
Sunday, November 2nd, 2008
6:36 pm
Thursday, October 30th, 2008
9:10 am
Okay, I am going to Get the Vote Out in Central PA this weekend. The caravan leaves from Frederick at 9 AM. Couldn't go last weekend because of an ornamentation class I forgot that I signed up for. Also, I'm going to try to get a list of old-biddies-like-me to call. It ain't over till it's over, folks!

Current Mood: hopeful
Friday, October 24th, 2008
8:10 am
I spent Saturday knocking on doors for Barack in New Oxford PA and will continue to do so the next two Saturdays. Only got two doors slammed in my face, and one was non-political. (My knock set the residential corgies to barking and it woke up the baby!) My apologies to that poor mother. Been there with cranky babies, and it's not pretty. (Though when I'm a grandma, I shall welcome it.)

One guy--big burly fellow with a tiny yappy dachshund--said he finally decided to vote democratic because he figured Prez O would be so busy fixing up the economy, he (Big Burl) wouldn't have to look at his face.

I just checked the Dems box and moved on.
Friday, September 12th, 2008
6:12 pm
Writer's Block: Missing from Nature
If one thing were to be stricken from nature, what could you stand to see go?

The governor of Alaska.

Current Mood: good
Tuesday, June 24th, 2008
8:24 am
great art!
Two great images sent to me this week:

First, a frozen wave in an unusually cold Antarctic winter,

and second, Al Snyder's depiction of what the sleaze of the Bush administration has brought us to.

Current Mood: contemplative
Wednesday, May 7th, 2008
8:47 am
Well, I was just congratulating myself that I finally got my cats weaned to wet food 2x and dry 1x per day. (Reason: my youngest is overweight and our vet warned us about the diabetes epidemic, which is supposed to have started when dry food became popular.) I even figured out what flavor they like best: Friskies "mixed grill"--yummers--and what they don't like: mainly the fishy varieties.

So natch, when I see my brother Frank, whose cat has FH (feline hypothyroidism), he tells me he read an article wherein the rise in FH has been linked to eating *CANNED CAT FOOD* that has the pull-off tops, which, of course, is what I've been feeding mine. AACK!

Then I go to a couple of very erudite vet websites and find out that:

The first study was done because someone noticed that the rise in FH frequency came about the same time pull-offs entered the market.

Aging is still the single biggest risk factor,

Himalayans and Siamese cats seem to have a lower risk of FH naturally. (Well, Yoda is half-Persian. Does that count?),

Cats who prefer fish or liver and gibs flavors have twice the risk as those eating only dry (Oh, goodie, mine only like the ones with meat and poult byproducts... well... and liver....),

(DOUBLE AACK!) Cats who use litter have a three-fold higher risk for FH (versus those tight-arsed little prodigies that squat on the toilet, I suppose),

Another study showed that elevated levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) have been found in cats with FH. PDBEs are present in flame retardants, and, therefore, most of the upholstery and bedding in our home. (These also entered the market about the time the rise in FH was noted.)

This means that Wally and Shiro, who spend most of their time outdoors, have a lowered risk for FH caused by PDBEs. Unfortunately Yoda, who likes the wet food best (and usually cleans up what the other two don't eat), is also the oldest and spends the least time outside.

What to do? What do do? (I know what you're thinking: stop reading so many @#%&**! articles.)
Tuesday, April 29th, 2008
11:20 am
It is reeellly nice to sit down to my journal and read some fun stuff about Harold and Kumar and sync swimming and such because it took my mind off the fact that I am so mad at everybody who I had to e-mail today because every lousy effing letter got bounced back at me. I feel myself going slowly postal. (Thank God there are no guns in th house.) I just want to say to the world


Stop bouncing my innocent replies back, whoever you are. I'm just trying to answer your effing questions!!!

Ahhh--I feel much better now. Thanks, guys.
Thursday, April 17th, 2008
12:58 pm
Here's a picture of the Early Music Society of Northern Maryland, playing in the incredibly neat atrium of the Towson Library. There's this spiral ramp going round and round, from the front door up to the library proper, which often has lots of neat pix on the walls. Note some of our audience over top of us, delighted--nay, enthralled--with the echoing melodies. I'm the gray-haired lady on the far right, not watching the director, natch!
Monday, March 31st, 2008
7:34 am
Since vees is mentioned carnivores/cats in his last poll, I thought I'd announce that my three cats are on a diet. Well, Shiro is because he's tipping the scale at fourteen pounds. Bro Joe told me his vet says his cat Cassie is over too and recommended an all meat diet because evidence is mounting that the dry food contains way to much carbs which is probably causing the surge in feline diabetes they're seeing. I checked on the Pet Stop site and it says that a nice mouse two or three times a day is the perfect balance of protein, moisture, and fat, and the only carbs it contains is whatever's in mousie's tummy at the time. But, since the critters are hard to come by these days, and Shiro's too fat to chase them anyway, I'm trying to wean all three kitties to a wet/meat diet. Last year, I started supplementing their dry food with a can (divided among the three) of wet food because after Shiro's serious bout with a blocked urethra, the vet said "get as much water into him as you can." No problem with the long-hair. He's always crying for canned food. But the other boys are more wary. They like their crunchies. Any suggestions for types/brands of food? I think I've figured out how much they need, but what to give? Canned? Home-made? Cheap? Expensive? Hmmm...
Friday, March 28th, 2008
9:22 am
For you Reallly Early Music junkies...
Concert update:

"The Road to Compostela - Music of the Pilgrims"
8:00pm, Saturday 19th April, 2008
Joseph & Alma Gildenhorn Recital Hall
University of Maryland Collegium Musicum
directed by Philip Cave
Admission free.

Lots of really beautiful melodies and harmonies accompanied by authentic facsimiles (?) of period winds, strings, and percussion. Everything's in ancient Spanish, Portugese, Latin and south European dialects and permutations thereof, guaranteed to transport you to the heights of confusion and religious ecstasy.
8:35 am
Some of you may know that my daughter Liz does renderings of strategy guides (mostly for Brady games) from Japanese to English. They always send her a box of the finished product.

So we have this stack of half full boxes of really neat looking guides taking up a corner of the dining room, and she said it would be okay to share the wealth. So here's a list of what we have, and if you'd like copies, just let me know, and I'll figure out a way to get them to you. (Library rate's still pretty cheap, I think...)

Shin Megami Tensei--P3 Persona (Atlus)
Castlevania--Dawn of Sorrow (Konami)
Genji--Dawn of the Samurai (PlayStation 2)
Soul Nomad and the World Eaters (NIS America)
Heroes of Mana (Brady: Square Enix: Nintendo DS)
DQM (Dragon Quest Monsters)--Joker (Brady: Squre Enix: Nintendo DS)
Mana Khemia--Alchemists of Al-Revis (NIS America, DoubleJump)
Final Fantasy (Crystal Chronicles)--Ring of Fates (Brady: Square Enix: Nintendo DS)
Final Fantasy VII--Crisis Core (Brady: Square Enix: PlayStation Portable)
Rune Factory--A Fantasy Harvest Moon (Brady: Natsume: Nintendo DS)

Send requests to maryellis@harpfolk.com in case we need to trade addresses.

Current Mood: productive
Wednesday, March 26th, 2008
2:19 pm
Monday was bad all around. I had placed a huge order for my store (Martins -grocery- in Eldersburg) because of inventory coming up It's the only company I know of that wants the shelves packed for inventory (something about shrink being a lower percentage of a huge count). I had to put up the dozen of so totes' worth. Took forever--well, it's cosmetics mostly: teeny-tiny little bottles and tubes and eyebrow pencils with miniscule gold writing that makes my eyeballs shrivel and spazz.

From there, I had to go to a rehearsal for a singing group at UM, called Collegium Musicum. We're doing a concert in April themed "On the Road to Compostela", mostly medieval pilgrimage songs (or maybe--shudder--sung by Crusaders expecting grace for their slaughter). There's singing (which I do--tenor, mostly--not enough men) but also instruments like shaums, recorders, and finger cymbals, tambours, and these little baby harps.

Well, I've only been to one rehearsal out of four so far (and was an hour late for that one because I mixed up the time, though I did show up for two sessions that didn't happen because the director didn't have me on his call-list) So, I didn't know the music all that well, and it's in Old Spanish and Middlin' Latin, and Catalan, Galician (whatever that is),Portugese, you name it. So the words are--well--hard.

I drove down, and wouldn't you know it, there was an accident on 95, so I was late, and at least two other people came in after me, and nobody knew the words very well, so the director got mad and threatened us all with expulsion or (for those of us who weren't taking the actual course) excommunication or, for the non-Catholics, vague hints at reincarnation as something slimy and highly expendable; it wasn't pretty. But the people with the instruments were fun to listen to and very, very good. Of course, they're majoring in strings and horns and stuff, AND they don't have to worry about the words.

One good thing: I got home to find out that I wasn't needed for a Hallmark job the next morning, so I got to sleep past five a.m.
Monday, March 24th, 2008
7:37 am
Wooo! Had a great holiday with some of my favorite people! Mike and Joe and Liz, natch, and Rebecca and John, and two of my brothers Joe and Frank. (Al is in Holland with his family celebrating his in-laws' anniversary.)

Showed Frank how to use my laptop. At 67 he's going to take an introductory computer course, so I wanted to give him a leg up.

We spent time wooing the cats, of course, especially Yoda, who took the admiring stares and petting with his usual queenly grace.

Frank brought me this really cute book by John Grisham. (Whoa--did I just put the words *cute* and *Grisham* in the same sentence?) But it is-- really. It's about C'mas actually, so how can it not be? And I'm going to read it just as soon as I satisfy my Aubrey-Maturin fix with #3 "The Mauritius Command."

While we waited for the others to show up, Bro Joe and Liz and I made candy with a kit Liz gave me at C'mas. I thought's we'd just be dipping fruit in the melted chocolate and vanilla candy, but Joe of course wanted to stretch things so he started making stacks and sandwiches of fruit, then we painted faces on some strawberries. It was fun and brought back memories of dye-ing eggs as kids and some of the bizarre experiments we tried (e.g. mixing all the colors together). Joe said he was in an elevator recently that was painted that exact color.

I had found this Bach guitar-recorder duet book on-line and gave Bro Joe a copy. He's going to look it over, and maybe we can play some together. That would be awesome.

But back to the festivities: in toasts of a nice white merlot that Bro Joe brought, we remembered those not with us. I thought of Kathy and Charles in Chicago, Sally and Tom, Ian (being currently wooed by the submarine corps) and his Emily, Dave and all his children and their sweeties, and Mike Taylor. Bless 'em all!

Dinner was pretty good. I overcooked the asparagus as usual, but the ham was nice--all clove-y and brown-sugary.

Dessert was a cheesecake with optional strawberries and a falling-apart chocolate cake (falling-apart because the layers would not come out of the g-d-mn pans.) There was fruit salad too, but nobody touched it.

After dinner, we played a game called Las Vegas Showdown (?) that John brought. (It was out of print, but he bought it on e-Bay) It was fun and exciting with appeal for all my sensibilities: strategizing to maximize profits, but also choosing and arranging the rooms in my casino and hotel for accessibility and variety like an interior decorator. Oddly enough there were no snide asides about mafia connections. With Joe E. and John tied at the end; Joe won the tie-breaker by having the most money. (So what else is new?)

Now we have the choice of eating healthily or decadently for the rest of the week. On the one side: ham, rice, cake, candy, sweet bread, and more cake. On the other, tropical fruit salad, strawberries, greens, and asparagus soup. Maybe we'll alternate.

Mike did voluteer to take the rest of the cheesecake in to work--noble of him.
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