Our internet service was down here at work for A WHOLE DAY. I know what you're thinking, but there aren't a lot of high cliffs to jump from here in Fooleryland, so I just texted my friends for support:
foolery: THE INTERNET HAS BEEN DOWN FOR HOURS. HOW DID PEOPLE SURVIVE IN CAVEMAN DAYS?! i feel faint . . .
Inviting, right? Note the presence of eggs, and juice, coffee, fine linens, preserves, cold butter, leafy greens to laugh about later, and forgiving lighting. Not shown but almost definitely present include attractive, witty conversationalists and a buttload of alcohol.
This is not quite how Sunday brunch goes down in Fooleryland. To wit, my most recent attempt at the Leisure Culture . . .
Sunday morning I woke up at the crack of Forgot-Daylight-Savings-Time-My-Grandmother-Would-Be-Appalled. Pulling on some plaid jammie pants, bright pink socks, a sweatshirt and an orange headband, I headed for the kitchen.
Coffee started, I pulled dry ingredients out of cupboards and prepared my mise en place, which is a snooty way of saying I pushed a bunch of crap aside to make room for biscuit dough. Each child had to cut a few biscuits, of course, so -- let the dogs out -- after making them wash their hands again-- let the dogs back in -- all biscuits were cut and popped into the oven.
Dicing up onions and mincing garlic seemed to take forever -- put Wally out again to stop the barking -- but eventually they were sizzling in olive oil as I chopped last night's potatoes. Beep-beep-beep! Beep-beep-beep! The biscuits were done. Time to -- let Wally in and now Rilo wants out again -- make the girls' Ovaltine. Don't judge me. Six tiny marshmallows in each cup and -- you're judging me, aren't you? -- the milk was almost heated. Is that coffee ready yet?
Into a bowl went the biscuits, wrapped in a linen towel. Girls, please set the table. Girls. Girls. GIRLS!
BING! Coffee's ready . . . thank GAH. Put the Ovaltine and coffee on the table and --
knock knock knock
Barking ensued. Lots of barking. Oh hi, Brian! What? You say the cows are out? Wait, lemme grab my boots. And turn off the burner.
Pink fuzzy feet and plaid legs jammed into rubber boots. Looking good, Foolery, looking good. Out the door into a light rain. Of course. The cows, which were not ours, numbered only two. One was wearing a padlocked chain like a necklace. THAT'S gonna be fun for someone to get off of her. Brian and I pushed them across the road to a food source (which they promptly ignored in favor of freedom) while my daughters called the right people.
Remembering my appearance I said a quick thank-you and goodbye to my helpful neighbor and slunk back into the house. Burner: ON. Girls, did you put the butter on the table? Girls? Girls? GIRLS!
Potatoes done, juice poured, dogs crated, it was time to sit down to our feast. "I'm thankful for this nice breakfast, are YOU, Sparky? What else are you thankful for?"
Finishing first, I jumped up to wash dishes, since I had quite a mess to clean up. The girls straggled in with their plates and headed off to their rooms. I listened to NPR in peace.
Until Smedley found the linen towel on the floor under the dining room table. "Mama, why is this on the floor?" she asked, bewildered. "Did you eat all the rest of the biscuits?"
"No, of course I didn't, I --" Oh crap. The dogs. The dogs ate all the biscuits.
"Will it hurt them, Mama?" Smedley asked, terrified that we, as new dog-owners, had just accidentally poisoned our new dogs.
"No, they'll be fine," I answered, not at all sure I wouldn't find piles of, well, let's leave it at piles, around the house over the next few hours. "But I need more coffee."
The clean-up was brutal. As I was finally finishing, Sparky sidled in to check on me. "What's for lunch?" she asked.
I don't think I need to make brunch again for a few more years.
How many hours did YOU spend with the gang from "Scooby Doo Where Are You!" back your misspent youth? Don't try to fool me because I can get to you through your mothers.
Once upon a time we all knew everything about Fred, Daphne, Shaggy, Velma and Scooby Doo, who together comprised the teenagers known by criminals everywhere as You Meddling Kids. We picked up from Shaggy the bad habit of frequently and unnecessarily inserting the word "like" into our speech. Our mothers rolled their collective eyes when we asked for Scooby Snacks (and later they just prayed our the munchies weren't caused by activities less savory than watching Hanna-Barbera cartoons). But mostly our Moms were worried we wouldn't pick up Fred's ascot fetish.
Ever wonder what You Meddling Kids are up to these days? You might be surprised.
Shaggy gave up crime-fighting for the music industry and is living his life as a Jamaican-American reggae and rap performer.
Velma got tired of being the plain Jane of the group. With a little help from contact lenses, pilates and a whole lotta silicon, she's not just "the smart one" anymore. Jinkies.
Poor, sweet Daphne. She peaked in her teens and life has been rather dull since then. She lives with 6 cats and a roommate who padlocks her room when she's out. Danger-Prone Daphne is now Edema-Prone Daphne.
Fred changed his name and went into show business. No one knows who he is now, but we hear he's big in Germany.
As threatened promised, I will be updating our friends Seth and Dez about the happenings of our shared family members, Wally and Rilo.
Wally and Rilo have been getting lots of walks, even in the drizzle.
The harnesses have been a struggle for us, so for now we are using the standard collars and leashes. This will change as we become LESS LAME.
They got out for the first time Thursday evening when a door bounced back instead of latching. The girls were beside themselves. The dogs were elated. Grandma was enlisted to help corral the escape artists, and the whole operation took no more than ten minutes. WINNING.
Rilo proved to be the fastest dog at the dog park last Tuesday, for 25 minutes of extended chase. She was exuberant, at least until a big dog became annoyed at her trash talk, and got a little rough. Poor Wally ended up in the middle. Wally took a flop, no one was really hurt, and the other dog park patrons took it all in stride.
They got their first showers Saturday, after Wally managed to squeeze through the manger stanchions in hot pursuit of chickens to the left, cat to the right. His only success was in center-punching a large cow pie. Chase aborted, Wally was unceremoniously carried into the house and dumped into the shower. He liked it.
They had their first successful nose-to-nose meeting with a friendly (but wary) cat on Saturday. They sniffed and licked and sniffed some more, but lost interest when they found some stray cat food on the ground. The meeting ended abruptly.
All in all, these two beagles have become part of our schedule, part of our family, and have completely taken over both the La-Z-Boy and our hearts. We love Wally and Rilo.
All photos taken by Smedley and Sparky (mostly Sparky this time).
I struggled over adding to this week's swirl of media surrounding Charlie Sheen, but I have zero qualms about slinging mud at Moammar al-Gaddafi, outrageous liar, despot and murderer that he is. And while these two men are vastly different people with vastly different demons, somehow, they sounded an awful lot alike to me all week. I'm not sure why this works so well, but it does. At least, it does in my head, but maybe that's because I have no Adonis DNA?
(Photos grabbed from Charlie Sheen interviews with Piers Morgan of CNN, Andrea Canning of ABC, and NBC's Jeff Rossen)
(Entire Gaddafi interview with Jeremy Bowen of the BBC, Christiane Amanpour of ABC, and the Sunday Times of London, found here)
I personally transcribed all quotes but one (and I can't remember which one) to be sure they were exact. While I've been working on this abstraction for days, I recognize that I'm not the first to draw the parallel between these two delusional public figures this week. For a wry take on this subject, check out this site.
An e-mail arrived Saturday from Mantel Man, copied to our brother Bocci and our sister Beth. As I read it I was struck by two unrelated yet inescapable facts: one, Mantel Man sees everything and describes it so well. Two, this will start a poopstorm of e-mails from the Fooleryland siblings. Who would be the first? Mantel Man's e-mail:
The replies from the siblings were, as always, merciless and silly.
Bocci: It may be time for a twitter account. Then we can find out your poop schedule as well.
foolery: I know what he eats. He will be far to busy pooping to Twitter about it.
Mantel Man: Well, that would mean some EXTREMELY local hazelnuts . . . Laurie, do you still use Twitter? I've seen other people misspell "too" on that site, so maybe it's contagious.
Bocci: I wasn't going to say anything.
foolery: Playing Go Fish and listening to Beck while answering e-mails. I can feel myself getting narrower.
Mantel Man: What's so narrowing about Beck's music? (To say nothing about Go Fish, which I find has a zen-like quality about it...)
Bocci: I wish I was narrower . . . to
Beth: Hahaha! FYI, they allow Subaru's in Whole Food market parking lots . . . Go fish.
And then the follow-up a few days later, from Mantel Man again:
Yeah. Any length for comedy, in this family. foolery: Are they selling hashish at your health food store AGAIN?
And Bocci had the last word: Wow, regret reading that! ...and getting him started.
Oh, and . . . there was a March 3rd report from Mantel Man. I'll spare you. You're welcome.