Monday, March 26, 2012

Jury duty and generosity

This is the kind of blog post I make so I can find the dates later.

I've been registered to vote since 1972, when they lowered the voting age from 21 to 18. I was 19 when I registered to vote; maybe 20. I've never been called for jury duty. Both my parents had. My dad was on a sequestered jury trial in Tierra Amarilla once for nearly a week. Keith has been called, twice.

Holly got a letter Friday with a long two-page questionnaire she's already returned, and she'll be in a jury pool for three weeks or so in April and May.

When Holly went to sign up at the community college, she was unable to prove her New Mexico residency on the spot, which is required there. She had a driver's license, but she needed something else. Utility bills in her name? But she lives at home, she doesn't rent or own a house. Well then, they said, just show us an automobile registration. Marty could've used that; the jeep is in his name. Holly, no car. So they asked if she was a registered voter. No, she said. Well, would you like to register?

So if she had been a non-resident alien on a tourist visa, but she filled out that voter registration paper, they would've given her in-state tuition status.

It was goofy, but there it was.

And now just a few months later, she's called to jury duty.

So I was able to tell her the story I had heard on the news just the day before of a woman who had feigned insanity (or irritating offness) to get off jury duty by dressing silly and behaving irresponsibly. Then she bragged about it on a radio talk show, the judge heard it, and now she's charged with perjury.
She left her hair rolled in curlers of different colors, shapes and sizes, slathered on "excessive" makeup and dressed in mismatched shoes with holiday reindeer socks and a T-shirt emblazoned with, "Ask Me About My Best Seller," the affidavit said. (http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/30732249/detail.html)
Holly's math class is a self-paced thing, and she's getting A's, so she figures she can get ahead some, and tell the teacher she might need to miss some classes, and that it won't be a problem. She has a once-a-week mother's helper job, and that won't be hard to re-schedule if necessary. And they're paying jurors minimum wage now. That was news to me.

I don't have photos to go with these stories.

 

Gratuitous non-related photos: Marty and Ashlee dressed to go to Josh and Mandy's wedding on March 10, and some of the chickens Holly was house-sitting (along with dogs, and the house itself) that weekend, too.

Saturday morning after Holly's jury duty news, Keith went to Costco. He was in line behind a mom and a two-year-old (or so) girl. He said he had seen them shopping, and the mom was pointing things out and telling the little girl the French names of them. When they got to the checkout, her debit card didn't go through, and she didn't have an American Express card, the only other kind of card Costco accepts. So Keith paid for her groceries with his, and she got his name and address and promised to send him the money.

Keith said there were little old ladies there, and they were all touched and saying how sweet, how nice.

It has been a little over $100. I asked if he had gotten her name and info too, and he said no. He felt pretty confident that she would pay him back, but if she didn't we could afford the loss. He said there was a time we couldn't have, but now we can. I think it's as cool a thing as any to do at tax refund time, or any time. I've helped people at checkout lines when they were a little short, and I've let lots of people go in line in front of me when I wasn't in a hurry and they seemed to be, or they only had a few items and I had a cartful, but Keith's story is a big one, and I'm glad he did that.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Jill's visit

Jill, Addi and Luke were here for a few days, and Kirby's visit overlapped them for much of it. That was a good combination and I had fun (and got tired).

The first day, we went to Old Town (while Kirby was still driving up from Austin).

Parking was cheap, but paying for it involved sticking paper dollars into a little hole with a metal tool hanging on a chain. Quarters would have worked, too, if we'd had them..




I'm back-dating this post, which was actually made on March 26.

I should really have taken more photos. :-) We were talking and having fun, eating candy from The Candy Lady (some of which was made right then and there for Jill and Addi), having already eaten at Blake's.



It was a really quiet day there, pretty shadows, joking with the snake-museum guy (we went into the gift shop, but didn't go in to the snake museum itself).

There was this one picturesque dog...


(that car was driving around the plaza)

The next day we went up the Tram, with Kirby. If some of the others have photos, please leave a note to where they are. I don't seem to have anything. I was sure it would be freezing up there, but it wasn't. Even though there was snow on the north side and the kids went down and played in it some, it was pretty sunny and still.

Some of the rest of the time was spent on "Draw Something," which Addi was playing with several people, and we watched her draw (well) and by the time she left Kirby was playing on his iPhone and I had it on my iPad.

Luke figured out how to hook my new projector up to the MacBook. We didn't figure out the iPad, or I'm sure we would have been watching Draw Something on the wall.

It was a peaceful, relaxing visit which made me feel like an insufficient tour guide, but I'm really glad they were here. Holly and I got to visit them in Fort Collins a couple of years ago, and though they had been to SUSS and the ALL Unschooling Symposium (so Santa Fe in 2010 and Albuquerque in 2011), they hadn't been to our house until now.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Kirby's here!

He's sleeping. His car's outside.



When Kirby was a baby, one time I woke him up from a nap just to play with him, to see him awake. He wasn't really crazy about it that day, and so I will not go in there today and look at him sleeping, but my mom feelings are high. :-) I'm glad he's here safely and will be glad when he wakes up.

Jill, Addi and Luke are down from Fort Collins for a visit. Holly will be back from her several-days of housesitting later today. It's spring break so Holly, Marty and Ashlee don't need to go to classes. Right now, though, the house sounds like one clock ticking and some very soft computer-keyboard noise.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Demise of the Lyrics Game

Although it was already often dormant, I've closed down my Lyrics Game for it collecting a sudden spate of dangerous (but interesting) spam.
Buy World Of Warcraft Gold has left a new comment on your post "Wall":

The language for the prophets are composed for the subway walls.



Cheap WOW Gold has left a new comment on your post "Fuel for a fire":

Frosty the snowman was a jolly content soul,
With a corncob pipe collectively with a key nose,
And two eye create away from coal.



WOW Gold has left a new comment on your post "Tea":

When I hold my sugar to tea
All the boys are jealous of me



World Of Warcraft Gold has left a new comment on your post "Red":

I just kicked you toward the curb, in my red-colored higher heels.



World Of Warcraft Gold has left a new comment on your post "Over":

Wouldn't it be beneficial to turn into in your side.
The grass is consistently greener greater than there.

I left the blog there, but turned off comments as well as I could figure out how to. People could still use it to play Encore, I suppose, in person with friends. It's still a word and topic randomizer of sorts.

It was fun sometimes, but all my energy is going toward Just Add Light and Stir these days.

Monday, March 05, 2012

A change in the false sea onion

Six or eight times, my false sea onion has bloomed.



There's one.

A few weeks ago it started to look like it was going to bloom, same quickly-grown long stem, but this time it's making seeds, and not flowers.


Could this be its last hoorah? We don't "need" seeds—it splits in the pot, or rather spawns little onions off the side of itself. If anyone knows, please leave me a note.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Spam Grammar

"Can you remember me, my name is Clarissa , At last here is found thy email"

Oh wow! I don't think anyone has ever used "thy email"—not even the Amish. It wasn't translated by a bot. It came from someone whose knowledge of English involves the King James Bible (or possibly, but much less likely, Shakespeare). (Or a bot programmed to create 17th century sermons.)

For the benefit of any spam translators who might come across this post, it should be "thine email," as email starts with a vowel sound. Otherwise the 16th century recipients whose servants read it aloud to them might think it's simply thy mail.
This one is correct, though "shalt" doesn't need two "l"s.

This one isn't correct, but as it's humor based on a bad translation, it's fun that it's not quite right.


Mayhap the creator of this graphic felt that "thy own self" was more modern than "thine..." or perhaps didn't think Shakespeare's Polonius was supposed to be using it correctly. It seems to me that quoting Shakespeare would work better by ... you know ... quoting.

The top part is okay, but the bottom is screwy.

The second line would only be slightly less jumbled if "whilst thou ridest thine steed" had been used (rather than "while your rides" thy steed).

What's the original of this one? I don't get the joke.


Except that the spam e-mail was somehow baffling sincere in its intent to be communicating in e-mail-appropriate English, I would figure it was just more of the mountain of "Ye Olde Thiseth and Thateth" godawfully pseudo early-modern English.

Friday, March 02, 2012

A still morning

It looks like snow outside. Smells like it, sounds like it (the echoey air when a bird sounds or a foot falls).

Holly is sick in bed, so I'm going to the gym without her.

Kirby called. He is still employed, but 600 other Blizzard folk are not, as of the 29th, and his shift "yesterday" started late Wednesday night, which is when they found out who stayed and who would leave with a quite-decent severance gift, but sudden unemployment. High security measures during and after the layoffs. Kirby's nearest involvement was telling his team members which should go to one room, and which should go to a different room. Eleven of his team of twenty-some was let go. He said he had survivor's guilt. He was glad to have his job, and he likes it, but the mood was dark, and security was heavy.

Keith came in a couple of days ago frustrated to have learned that he won't get a raise next year. But Keith, too, is still employed.

Compared to families where the main support person has become unemployed during the recession, I know we're fortunate. Marty isn't working, but he's going to school and we can afford to support him. Holly's working a little here and there, and going to school and singing and doing yoga, and we can afford to support her, still.

I'm working on tallying up my travel expenses and book sales, printing costs and office supplies over the past year. I have a hobby/vocation that supports itself at about a break-even level, but that does take the pressure off of Keith to pay for me to help other people unschool (as he has done several years in the past).

I have solemn gratitude this morning, rather than the usual bubbly gratitude.