1. Which of the following could you do without? TV, Computer, Mobile Phone. TV, I guess. I would miss PBS! My son has no TV and he streams everything. Maybe he could teach me!
2. Do you have a lot of old photographs in a box, or did you put them in albums? I do have some photos in a box, but at least they are all sorted and labeled. I have also put a lot of my photos in albums. I was into the scrapbooking craze for awhile – it’s amazing how much time I took (and money I spent!) to add little embellishments and create fancy backgrounds. It’s a lot easier now, because I do it on Shutterfly, since all my photos are now digital (and I can scan the ones that aren’t, which are mainly ones other people have given me). I don’t like to just keep all my photos on my computer, or on flashdrives or whatever. Then if I look at them later, I won’t remember what’s in the photos. I like to remember my trips and I enjoy making and looking at my albums (especially in the depths of winter) and showing them to others. There are many trips I haven’t made into albums, but at least I try to have a journal so I know what the photos are about.
If my kids or grandkids want to throw away my albums after I’m dead, so be it! I will die believing they will cherish them as keepsakes, as well as all my writing!
3. What was the first thing you bought for yourself when you started work?
OMG, that was so long ago, I have no idea! Probably clothes.
4. What is the biggest thing you have bought that did not require finance?
My husband’s car – we didn’t need to finance because at the time we happened to have the money from selling a property, and we also got something of a rebate from his trade-in. It was great not to have monthly car payments, at least until I bought a new car a year later…
Di at pensivity101 is still substituting for Melanie for Share Your World. Here are her questions:
Do you have family photographs on display in your main living room? Yes – well, mostly not in the living room, but on bookshelves in a few different rooms, mostly our bedroom. Our daughter’s wedding photo is on a bookshelf in the living room, wedged between two book ends holding sets of books on either side.
2. What was the best vehicle you owned? I think it’s my current one, a Toyota Prius. I have almost always had Toyotas, which have always worked great for me. Once I had my dad’s old Dodge, which petered out and I had to sell because it would stall when it was raining. (In fact, it was due to that problem that I bought my first cell phone – a big clunky thing!) Another time, I bought a Chrysler Reliant, which was a terrible purchase. Admittedly, the car was used but I had one problem after another. “Reliant” – Ha! What a lie! After that, I went back to buying a used Toyota, and when I could afford a new car, I bought a Toyota Corolla! Since then, I’ve had a hybrid Camry, which we gave to our daughter and son-in-law when his truck died, giving me the excuse to buy the Prius. I have never had to replace a Toyota due to problems with the car; it’s always been to donate to one of our kids!
3. Did you pass your driving test first time? No, I passed it the second time, 6 months after my first try. I didn’t really do anything wrong in my first driving test, except that I was driving my dad’s stick shift car, and it had developed a random habit of stalling. The way to get it going again was to open the hood and wiggle two wires that my dad had shown me! Since this didn’t happen all the time, I took a chance that it wouldn’t happen during the test (and it was the only vehicle available that day). Well, it did! The car stalled after I stopped at a stop sign. I told the instructor I knew what to do to get it going again, but he wouldn’t let me open the hood to wiggle the two wires! So I had to just keep trying to start the car again the normal way, and eventually succeeded without my dad’s remedy! When he failed me, the instructor said, “Next time, bring a car in good working order.”
4. Does loud music from a neighbour or passing cars annoy you? Yes. I think this is very rude. However, I have occasionally turned the volume up on the radio in the car when a favorite song comes on, but now I roll up the windows.
The worse time to have loud music next door is in college, when you’re trying to study and in the next dorm room, they’re having a party and don’t turn it down when you ask them nicely. This happened to me one time and I went next door and pounded on the door. I was so mad I could hardly control myself! I wanted to strangle the guy who opened the door. Instead, I just yelled at him, using several choice epithets. Seeing that my face was red and I was screaming at him, he agreed to turn it down, which he did (but not enough). Well, that’s dorm life!
Gratitude: What has made you smile over the last seven days? My cat, hearing Mahler’s Symphony #1 on my favorite XM radio station in my car, our family’s monthly Zoom meeting and hearing about my nieces and nephews from my sisters.
When you’re on holiday, do you prefer self catering or a hotel/B&B? On road trips, I will pack a cooler with necessities for picnics, such as bread, cheese, fruit, and beverages. But we rarely use them. It’s just easier to go to a restaurant. The last time I remember having a picnic on a road trip was the day we went to Devil’s Tower in eastern Wyoming, five years ago. After visiting the monument, we found a picnic table near the entrance to the park, and I set out our picnic fixings. It was about 6 p.m., and just as we were starting to eat our picnic dinner, it started to rain! We finished our sandwiches quickly, then headed back to the car just in time before it started to pour!
Do you have a favourite meal you cook for yourself or order when out? We live at a senior community, and one reason we moved here was so we wouldn’t have to cook anymore. We get our own breakfast together and for lunch, eat salad or leftovers from dinners the night before in the dining room. In the evening, we eat in the dining room, and I must say the food is usually quite good.
That said, my husband makes great omelets, customarily on Saturdays, but it could be any day he feels like doing it! The omelet always contains tomatoes, onions, kale (from a friend’s garden), sometimes luncheon meat, and cheese. It might have other veggies, like broccoli. We have freshly squeezed orange juice (this is done at Mariano’s supermarket, we just buy the bottles of it!) and either a bagel, a muffin, or toast. That is the most elaborate meal we cook for ourselves these days!
In the current fuel crisis, have you made a conscious effort not to use the car unless absolutely necessary? I think about it sometimes, and I at least drive a Prius (hybrid), but we don’t drive a lot anymore. We are both retired and our regular trips consist of to and from a golf course weekly (my husband, with his Subaru Forester), doctors’ appointments and shopping, usually in neighboring suburbs, and some activities I do with friends in the city we used to live in, which is only five miles from here. It takes several weeks, usually a month, for my gas tank to get low enough to buy gas. I get 50 miles to the gallon, which is better than most cars on the road in the U.S.!
4. If you were to compare yourself to a plant, what would you be? I’d be a saguaro cactus. I love these majestic giants and sometimes they have many arms in a variety of positions. They look awkward sometimes, and I can relate!
I am lucky to have a lot of happy memories from my childhood. Please share one from yours. Most of my friends during childhood lived in my neighborhood in our hometown in southern Wisconsin, so we played together outside when weather permitted. We’d ride our bikes, go to our local beach (a man-made pond with a sandy shore), or play in the woods behind our houses. In the summer, we’d stay out as late as our parents let us – it was perfectly safe then, even after dark. In the winter, we’d go to each others’ houses, but usually ended up at mine. If one of the kids left a scarf or hat at my house, I’d smell it and then I’d know who it belonged to!
Are you more productive at night or in the morning? Do you think it’s possible to change and get used to another schedule? I’m not really a morning person. I am more active at night, usually – perhaps it’s because I realize I have things to do and here it is evening and I haven’t done them yet! Yes, I think it is possible to adapt to another schedule, which I would like to do. There is an exercise class at 9:00 am on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, which is right now too early for me, but if I stop staying up so late, I should be able to get up an hour earlier so I can go to that class! So I should try to move back my bedtime incrementally. (But here it is 11:18 pm and I’m just starting to blog!)
What’s the biggest vehicle you’ve driven? If you don’t drive, what’s the biggest vehicle you’ve ridden in? This is wimpy, I know, but the largest car I’ve ever driven is a station wagon or small SUV. I have recently started driving my husband’s Subaru Forrester for short distances in decent weather, but I still prefer my Prius!
What songs would be played on a loop in hell? (Suspend disbelief for this one, it’s cool not to believe in Hell, but let’s use our imaginations to answer. Of course one can always skip the questions they find odd too. And yes, I took into account that individual tastes will influence individual choices.) Advertising jingles – they are very repetitive, loud (ads are louder than the TV shows that air them), annoying as hell, and somehow stick in one’s mind. I think that would be the worst thing to listen to on a loop in whatever hell one may end up in!
(Deep and chewy philosophical question): What does it mean to be a person? What constitutes “personhood?” (there may be some diverse opinions, but we’re all mature adults in here, so be respectful of others please). I think of a “person” as a human being. I don’t refer to animals such as pets as “persons,” although some people do. All humans are “persons” (or people – is that the plural of person?), no matter their race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation or whatever. Every human is equal to every other. Some are nicer than others, but that doesn’t make them less than persons. However, just because a person is a human being doesn’t make him or her superior to other animals. We think we are more intelligent and more important than other animals, but we have a lot to learn – a humbling prospect!
GRATITUDE SECTION (Always Optional)
How were your spirits (mood) over the past week?
It’s been a hectic and sort of dreary week. The weather has been lousy overall for this time of year. My daffodils are starting to bloom, while we get snow and hail! I was feeling really blah this morning, but I felt better after being in the swimming pool and hot tub this afternoon!
I’ve been busy working on Earth Week (April 18-22) activities here at the Moorings, as head of the environmental concerns committee, so everyone looks to me to figure this stuff out! I hope it will be a success though! Stay tuned!!
I haven’t had the time to use my computer much less blog! I’m involved in so many things, I guess. That is why I am grouping my “odds” in subjects so I can post several at once, for Becky’s February Squares: SquareOdds.
Unfortunately, I can’t find my photo of a car with eyelashes, or it would be in here! But have you ever seen a VW in a tree? Maybe someone in Bethlehem (Israel) put it there to be considered “art”!
Baby car hitches a ride on mama car in some small Iowa town – they’re ready to go! Pretty spiffy, though!
An abandoned van in the desert along Route 66 between San Bernardino and Kingman.
I just had to take a photo of this ironic bumper sticker. It’s one of the best I’ve seen! Also this car has an odd number of bumper stick-ons! I don’t know who this car belonged to, but it was parked in the parking lot behind a high school in Sedona, Arizona.
Now here are some real oddities: outer space cars?? You will find them in Baker, California!
Here’s a side view of the above, although I could not make it square. Galaxy Peace Patrol? Sort of ironic that it is “armed” with missiles!
This is a picture of my absent car – it left a snowy outline of its space, because the driveway was shoveled around it. It’s an odd picture – I don’t know why I took it!
Can you parallel park (if you drive)? If you don’t drive, can you still skip? I have never been particularly good at parallel parking, although I have to do it once in a while. It is facilitated in newer cars (like mine) by displaying a picture of what is behind the car when the driver puts the car in reverse. Superimposed on the display is a sort of “map” of the car which shows where the back and sides of my car are. It does help but I still dislike parallel parking. Usually I end up too far from the curb.
Do you prefer early morning or late evening? Or something in between? I am not an early morning person. I will not take an exercise class earlier than 10 a.m.! I usually am awake until about midnight, but we’ve been going to bed a little earlier so that we can get up early enough to take a walk before it gets too hot. So I guess I prefer in between. I think I’m an “afternoon” person – that seems to be when I get the most done.
Do you like avocados? Yes, sort of. In the form of guacamole, I love it!
Is mind or matter more real? What an odd question! Both are “real” – that is, both are part of the experience of a person’s life.
and a bonus ‘deep’ question just because
Are people in this current generation less or more sensitive than people from past generations?
I’m not sure what you mean by “sensitive.” More empathetic? More kind or caring? Less self-absorbed? It’s hard to say, because there are many “generations” living at the same time. The word generations has come to mean certain age groups, with some stereotypical characteristics attached to that group, such as “millennials” or “Gen-X,” etc. I think we older citizens (mostly Baby Boomers now, like myself) look somewhat askance on the behavior of some people younger than ourselves; for example, it seems to be no longer safe to travel by air – especially if you are one of the flight attendants – with so many attacks from passengers. Not just rudeness, although that’s there too; I mean, there are reports of physical attacks on flight attendants because the passenger feels his/her “rights” are being violated, such as a requirement to wear a mask to minimize the spread of Covid in a tight space packed with people. Such behavior never (or very rarely) used to happen on airplanes.
Then there are mass shootings in public places which used to be considered safe, random shootings on expressways, crime rates in urban areas have gone up, people feel free to say racist things without considering how it may offend others, and social media has taken over public discourse.
If “sensitive” means easy to offend, I would say that yes, the younger generation is more sensitive nowadays. People get offended by the most casual things, they talk about “cancel culture” or what is “PC” or not. Perhaps this trend is a reaction to the incivility in today’s society (as described above)?
I think the last four years have ushered in an era in which rudeness and nastiness are considered an okay way to express one’s views. It seems to be most prevalent in the 30-50 age group, although that’s just my perception and I am not saying that all or even the majority of 30-50 year-olds are that way. It’s just more prevalent. People believe conspiracy theories or false information they read on the Internet, instead of listening to experts in a particular field. Human-induced climate change is agreed upon by 99% of climate scientists, and evidence is everywhere, yet some right-wing web site says it’s a hoax, so people believe it. Some people are more scared of the Covid vaccine than Covid itself. Pure madness!
GRATITUDE SECTION (as always optional)
Please feel free to share something inspiring that’s happened to you recently!
I attend a weekly art workshop here at the Moorings. It’s just a group of artistically inclined people who get together for an hour and a half, each doing their own art projects. One guy is making a quilt. A retired high school art teacher is painting on a gourd. Others are painting in water color, oils, or making cards. I am inspired by the work of the other artists, and some have inspired me to try certain techniques. I have always been good at drawing, but now I’m expanding into painting in watercolors, which is definitely a learning experience! I try to use techniques I see others use. We also give each other tips and encourage each other. And one of the women asked if she could purchase a chalk drawing I did for her daughter, who had admired it at a recent art display for a garden walk. This is a photo of it:
Becky’s chosen a cheery topic for her April Squares challenge: anything bright, however you interpret it!
Earlier today, we took a walk and I noticed my neighbor, Gail, had been out for a spin in her red Mustang – her “lady toy” – because it was sitting in the driveway.
My own car is in our driveway (we only have a one-car garage), and today, looking at the sun reflected on the hood, I saw not one, but TWO suns! How did that happen?!
On a sadder note, our fitness director quit, and her last day was Tuesday. Several residents from our community lined the street in front of the gatehouse to say good-bye. Although she was crying (her mood wasn’t bright and sunny), her car certainly is – mustard yellow?
Share Your World Meets Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter can speak to snakes. If you were able to have conversations with any one animal, what animal would you like to speak to? What would be the topic of your first conversation? I would talk to my cat. I often wonder what she is thinking and how she really sees her human friends and caretakers. Our first conversation would be what she dreams about. Sometimes she makes funny noises in her sleep so I’m wondering if she’s chasing a squirrel or a bird in dreamland.
The portraits in Hogwarts dormitories can talk. If your graduation portrait could speak to people passing it by, what would it tell them? I don’t have a graduation portrait.
Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger use the Pollyjuice Potion for finding new clues for the happenings at Hogwarts. (The Pollyjuice Potion is a magic potion that allows your body to form into that of another and live their life for a few hours.) If you could transform into another being, who would you chose to be? What would you hope to learn? Once again, I would like to be a cat for one day to see what it’s like. I could really relax if I had no cares at all and could spend 16 hours a day sleeping. I think after one day, though, it would get boring. Cats can’t read!! And their food is gross!
4. There was a flooding in the girl’s bathroom where Moaning Myrtle resides. Whathas been the most dangerous (or comical) ‘flooding’ where you reside? The Des Plaines River has always been prone to flooding, but since they built the deep tunnel (large diameter pipes underground), it isn’t as much of an issue. However, the city still gets flooded in heavy rainstorms. The local government puts up signs warning people of the flooded areas. One of my son’s girlfriends once drove right through a flooded road. She felt good about getting through the flooded area, but needless to say, her car was ruined.
The worst sort of “flood” we had in our house in Des Plaines was when the sewer backed up. The sump pump couldn’t handle the amount of rain and so the basement got flooded with sewage. Anything that was on the floor was ruined.
Mundane or “Muggle” Questions:
(Serious one which is rather creepy): How do you think you’ll die? IF you do think about it? I do think about it, actually. I want to die in my sleep at an old age. Doesn’t everybody? I get scared sometimes when flying in turbulence and during landing. Last year, I had a panic attack while driving. I suddenly realized I was in a machine going at a relatively fast speed and all around me were other people in equally “dangerous” machines – it was shortly after my son totaled his car, so it was probably for that reason that I panicked. So I do sometimes think I will die in some sort of crash but I really hope not. I might die when traveling – maybe there will be a terrorist attack. Or I could cross the street and get hit by a truck – who knows? That’s the good thing about death – most people don’t know when or how it will happen, so we just go on living our lives, which is what we should do.
What’s the best on-line screen name you’ve seen? “Best might mean the oddest. I have no idea.
What’s invisible that you wish people could see? Dark matter. It would be interesting to see how much dark matter there is in the universe compared to matter we can see.
If over time you replace parts on a car, at what point does it stop being the same car you bought? How many parts do you need to replace to make it a new car? I don’t replace a lot of parts in my cars, except batteries, tires, and so forth. I would consider it the same car no matter how many parts are replaced as long as when I get in it, it feels the same inside and its body is the same. I don’t think about cars very much. I love my car and it has a “pet” name I’ve given it, but that is the extent of my attachment to it.