Thursday, May 31, 2007

Word of the day: morbidity

In my business, I read a lot of medical texts. One thing that comes up infrequently, but often enough, is "morbidity." I can guess at what that means, but I'd rather know for sure.

Turns out, according to the online medical dictionary, it means Illness or Disease. Not as serious as I'd thought.

Spam-Haters of the World Breathe a Sigh of Relief

From AOLMoney and Finance:

SEATTLE (May 31) - A 27-year-old man described as one of the world's most prolific spammers was arrested Wednesday, and federal authorities said computer users across the Web could notice a decrease in the amount of junk e-mail.

The article goes on to say that the person in question, under 35 indictments for email fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering, is known as one of the top 10 spammers in the world. Conviction could put him away for a long, long time. Hopefully without access to computers.

via By the Way...

Child Safety: The Polly Klaas Foundation

I first read about this organization from Ariane Benefit's Neat Living blog. When I read what they were up to, I signed on as a volunteer to distribute posters of missing children.

I'll blog more about it as it goes along and I get a sense for how it all works.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Round Robin Photo Challenge: Mailbox

For this Round Robin Photo Challenge... mailboxes. I'm fascinated by the different ways people dress up the mundane.

firefighter emblem 06022006

Deere Bartlett IL 06172006

engine 688

big-mouth bass 06022006

see more mailboxes here.


Gattina - POSTED!
Keyhole Pictures

Steven - POSTED!

Karen - POSTED!
Outpost Mâvarin

Photographs And Memories Too

Janet - POSTED!
Fond of Photography

Cosette - POSTED!
Birds of Venus

Suzanne R - POSTED!
New Suzanne R's Life


Carly - POSTED!
Ellipsis... Suddenly Carly

Teena - POSTED!
It's all about me!

One Man Star Wars

Charles Ross does Star Wars all by himself. The video clips are hilarious. I'll have to hope he comes to the states next year. I want tickets!

A one-hour, high energy, nonstop blast through the first three Star Wars films. The catch is, there's only one cast member.
Charles Ross, the writer and solo performer, spent too much of his childhood in a galaxy far, far away- adulthood has been similar. Ross plays all the characters, recreates the effects, sings the music, flies the ships, and fights both sides of the battles.

blog it

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Unconscious Mutterings, Week 225

I say ... and you think ... ?

  1. Dancer :: Elton John
  2. Intellectual :: smart
  3. Direct :: TV
  4. Tolerate :: put up with
  5. Post :: blog
  6. Instinctive :: natural
  7. Brink :: edge
  8. Regain :: get
  9. Repulsed :: disgusted
  10. Distressed :: upset
see more mutterings here.

Learning something new: moribund

It's often possible to "dope out" the meaning of a word by reading its context. Of course, that can lead to misinterpretations, especially if the author isn't really using the word correctly to begin with.

And so I have decided to start looking up words when I'm not really sure what they mean. It's good for the brain anyway.


moribund \MOR-uh-bund\, adjective:
1. In a dying state; dying; at the point of death.
2. Becoming obsolete or inactive.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Childhood and Americana for Memorial Day

Browsing through the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, I came upon a pack of original Crayola crayons. Brings it all back.

I may have to go out and buy a big ol' pack of crayons and do some coloring.
 blog it

Sunday Scribblings #61: Simple

Simple is a popular concept now. People - myself included - want to "simplify." There are Web sites, seminars, books, recordings and trainers all dedicated to helping us simplify.

What does that mean? What is simple? Simple compared to what?

To me, simple is quiet. Reflective. It's hard to get those times, with job, family, society and media all vying for your attention.

Simple meals. Eating has become more and more complicated. Remember meat and potatos? No: you forgot the veggies. Your meat portion is too large, and you shouldn't eat carbs. Unless you should eat carbs. You should eat dairy, but not milk, yogurt or cheese. Wine? One glass, two glasses? It's good for you, unless it isn't. Diet soda, regular soda, no soda. Sixty-four ounces of water a day. Or not. Green tea, white tea, red tea, black. Antioxidants. Free radicals. When I was growing up, "free radicals" was a political term.

Love. only sounds simple. It's, in fact, one of the most complicated simplicities in the world.

Online bill paying. Sounds simple. Sure. Until a computer glitch loses your payment, doubles your payment, overdrafts your account or takes your money after you cancel the program.

Getting out to get fresh air. Bug spray, sun screen, no hairspray. Broad hats, flats - or sneakers? - beach, mountains, meadow, pool...gear.

Getting dressed. Going where? What to wear? White after Labor Day? Winter white? Pastels, prints, stripes, polka dots. Matching socks.


No, life ain't simple. But oh yes, it's good.

view more scribblings here.

So long, Charles Nelson Reilly

Mr. Reilly died on May 25.

A Tony-award winning Broadway actor, Reilly also appeared 95 times on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, and made bit appearances on most of the popular TV shows of the 70's. He was nominated for an Emmy for his performances several times.

He made a name for himself for his outrageous one-liners and innuendos on game shows like Hollywood Squares (where he occupied the center square) and Match Game.

I personally best remember him as HooDoo on Lidsville. A sad thing to say. I remember him - and contemporary Paul Lynde - as familiar faces in lots of favorite shows in my youth, including Nanny and the Professor and I Dream of Jeannie.
clipped from

blog it

WordPlay: G is for....

G is for...

Photo via Wildlife Pictures Online.

Giraffe: one of my favorite animals. They're so funny looking!

Goofy: the general mood of my family.

Great: big or good, depending.

Gemin: Maxcy's new last name

Gemini: A sign of the zodiac. My mother and sister are both Geminis.

Gouda: a kind of cheese.

Girl: I'm one, and I have three girl-children.

Gee: A word I should use more, instead of the seemingly standardized profanity.

God: omnipotent, omniscient creator of the universe.

Greek: a country in southern Europe, origin of some of my favorite myth stories, country of Aesop, who wrote some excellent fables.

Gyros: Greek food pronounced "yee-rohs," made of spiced lamb on pita with a cucumber cream sauce.

Gnocchi: Italian dumplings. Quite yummy.

Este carro é bolo

From Brazilian site Static comes the pictorial of...well, I don't know. A bunch of bakers who made a life-size car out of cake. Check out the engine!
clipped from
blog it

More Star Wars heaven

Awesome papercraft Millennium Falcon to download and DIY. The details are amazing.

See more of these at

Via boingboing, finder of all things nifty.
clipped from
blog it

More Celebration IV

Originally uploaded by bonniegrrl.

Not the most original costume, but an obvious fan favorite. The slave Leia's cuddle up to Jabba for a photo.

Memorial Day

For those who fought, and those who fell.

blog it

Friday, May 25, 2007

Another amazing Lifehacker tip

I just love these guys...

Boost Car Remote With Skull - video powered by Metacafe

via Lifehacker.

And more from The Vader Project

The Vader Project
Originally uploaded by Official Star Wars Blog.

A runner-up. Awesome diorama work!

Read all about it at the Official Star Wars Blog

More from The Vader Project

The Vader Project
Originally uploaded by Official Star Wars Blog.

My personal favorite.

Read about Celebration IV here.

Star Wars/Zombie mashup...Braaaaiiinnns!

The Vader Project
Originally uploaded by Official Star Wars Blog.

From The Vader Project.

Read more about celebration IV here.

Little Leia

Little Leia
Originally uploaded by Official Star Wars Blog.

The 30th anniversary celebration of the original release of Star Wars is underway. This must be Han and Leia's granddaughter.

Read about Celebration IV here.

I blame the midichlorians

Apparently the psychiatric department of France's "there's not enough real crazy people" hospital have too much time on their hands.

Click through to read the full article.
clipped from

Today, experts from the psychiatric department at France's University Hospital of Toulouse told the APA's annual meeting that Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader could "clearly" be diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.

blog it

Lost finale

The folks at BuddyTV are much more clever than I am. And so are the writers at Lost.

I never would have guessed at what the Lost fans discovered.
clipped from
Hoffs/Drawlar isn't just a funny name for a funeral home, its also an anagram for "Flash Forward," which aptly described the temporal nature of the sequences we were watching.
blog it

Not your average McMansion

From Monocle via Apartment Therapy... a look at the "narcotechture" of Afghanistan's new rich.

"Narcotechture" is a coined term for houses built on drug money. Not all the houses belong to drug lords, but the slideshow at Monocle's site shows that sometimes, crime temporarily pays.

blog it

Thursday, May 24, 2007

By the Way weekend assignment #167: Bad TV You Loved as a Kid

Weekend Assignment #167: You watched some bad TV as a kid. Tell us your favorites. Now, this doesn't mean you realized at the time it was bad. Just now, in the fullness of time, you recognized that your viewing choices left something to be desired. For the purposes of this assignment, try to stick with shows that were aimed at kids, although if you can't think of any, prime time shows are okay as well.

Okay, here's one: The Kids from C.A.P.E.R. A fun quartet of silly young hot guys, deliberately patterned after the Monkees. C.A.P.E.R. stood for Civilian Authority for the Protection of Everybody, Regardless, and the kids, Doc, Doomsday, P.T. and Bugs would solve crimes and sing songs.
blog it

Unconscious Mutterings: Week 224

I say ... and you think ... ?

  1. Coastguard :: cutter
  2. Buddies :: list
  3. Nap :: ahhhh
  4. Groan :: moan
  5. Sitcom :: laughter
  6. Reader :: Adobe
  7. Heroes :: television
  8. Amazing :: grace
  9. Woman :: man
  10. Don’t! :: Stop!

View more mutterings here.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Star Wars cake

Max Reebo makes his way to the birthday scene. Very cool.
clipped from

blog it

Places I've been: The Big Duck

If I remember right, I've visited the Big Duck twice: once with my children, and once with my children, nieces, nephews, mother and sisters.

It's a long drive from Mom's to the duck, and once you get there, there's not a lot to do, except look at the big duck, and go inside to shop for duck-themed items. Even so, it's an affectionate piece of Americana and one of the first buildings that was built in the shape of its product. Because of this, other buildings in the shapes of their products are called "ducks."

blog it