Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Snow Tire and Frozen Daffodil Festival

It appears that Arkansas' periodic "Snow Tire and Frozen Daffodil Festival" has, again, come to a close.  Thank You, Lord.

I was house-bound for two days last week, waiting for the temperature to rise enough to begin to melt the approximately 5" of snow and the underlying inch or more of solidly frozen sleet, the latter having begun to fall upon us with a vengeance about 4 p.m. on Wednesday last.

When I consider other parts of the U.S. and what they have been through in the way of repeated, and seemingly unending, winter storms, I'm happy that Winter Storm Thor was all we had to contend with.

I'm quite content to deal with sleet and snow -- it usually doesn't stick on the tree limbs and power lines.  I was extremely thankful to awake the morning after the storm to find my furnace still running and the lights on.

We're currently experiencing rain, Spring Rain (YAY), and temps are in the high 50's.  While there are still patches of sleet/snow lingering around my yard in areas where the winter sun doesn't reach, it should all be gone, gone, gone in a day or two.

I hope all of you weathered the latest round of unpleasant weather without destruction or major inconvenience

Tomorrow is also a day.

Thursday, February 5, 2015


Sometimes I just can't wait for a particular book to hit my local library shelves. Tight-wad that I am --but betting on the come -- I paid the grandiose sum of $0.99 for a certain Kindle download from Amazon.  (I have learned that was a one-time/one-day special; the cost is currently just under $11 for the  download.) I got my money's worth, and then some!

I had read the author's first novel (this is the second but I hope not the last) upon the recommendation of Arkansas Patti (The New Sixty) and enjoyed it immensely. I was happy to write to her a few weeks ago about discovering that there was a second novel, even though I had not yet started reading it. 

The story is described by one reviewer as "picaresque," and that it is; every one of its 433 pages contains some quirk that will leave you smiling, laughing out loud, or in sheer wonderment at the twists and turns of the plot.

For sensible reviews, may I refer you to Amazon, and The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson, author of the very successful The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (also recommended by yours truly) .

I do hope Mr. Jonasson is working on a third novel that will be completed and translated before I can no longer read (may that be a long time coming.)

Tomorrow is also a day.

Friday, January 30, 2015


I had errands to do today which required being out and about in my vehicle.  Our city fathers have seen fit to place traffic signals at most of the intersections on the streets I traveled. As my luck would have it, I spent quite a bit of time waiting for lights to turn green so that I could proceed.  During one of those waits, I idly observed the vehicles passing on a particularly busy cross street.  After watching dozens, if not hundreds, of cars, trucks, and buses pass by, it suddenly occurred to me that white-walled tires seem to have disappeared. I paid more careful attention at subsequent stops and can report that (at least today), on the possible thousand vehicles to which I paid attention, I did not spot a single one (white wall tires, that is. I did spot the vehicles.)

Sic transit gloria tires.

Tomorrow is also a day.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Oxford English Dictionary

As is my wont, when there are not pressing matters that must be attended outside my home at an early hour, I start each day playing games on the computer.  Free Cell and Bookworm are my go-tos, both of which are my homemade tests for judging my present mental acuity.  I am convinced that if I can make it through Freecell and make a decent score on Bookworm, my mind is working reasonably well and I can proceed with the day.  If I have difficulties, I convince myself that another cup of coffee will sharpen my mind to the point that I can make it through the day without doing myself any major damage.

This morning, as I was playing Bookworm, I marveled again, as I have literally hundreds of time in the past, at the richness of the English language.  So many words; simple, complex, beautiful words! As I posted early in my blog, I have been in love with words since I was a teenager, inoculated with the love of words virus by my high school English teacher.

I discovered the Oxford English Dictionary when I was a freshman in college. Having been exposed to dictionaries only the the form of the latest Webster's,  I was amazed at the wealth of information on word roots and origins and the first use of words in the English language contained in the OED.  As I was not very socially inclined at that time in my life, I spent many, many hours in the college library, where the 20 volumes of the OED sat on top of one of the long tables. I spent hours perusing those books.  I'd like to be able to say that I had read the entire OED, but I fear that, even at my advanced age, I might have made it through, perhaps, a dozen volumes by now.

[Wikipedia information on the OED, may be found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxford_English_Dictionary]

A book that has managed to stay for over 30 years in my sadly diminishing personal library is the story of the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary. It is a biography of James Murray, editor of the original OED, written by his granddaughter, K. M. Elizabeth Murray, and first published by Yale University Press (1977). My well-worn paperback copy was published by Oxford University Press in 1979.  Oh... it's title?  CAUGHT IN THE WEB OF WORDS. If you love words, or simply have a curiosity about the OED, I highly recommend it to you.

It's bitterly cold here today.I left my taps dripping last night, and was pleased to have both cold and hot water this morning. Although the weather is not as brutal as it is in some parts of the U.S., it's more than cold enough for us southerners. If there is a good side to it, it's cold enough to kill the remaining mosquitoes and, hopefully, most of the ticks and chiggers. Fortunately, it is just cold; no precipitation.  That's due to move into our area on Saturday evening.  I expect icy roads  at church time on Sunday.  We shall see what we shall see.

Tomorrow is also a day.