Good News Ahead?

I had a dream last night about being on a business trip and realizing at the end that I’d lost or misplaced a bag with two laptops.
Per Dream Magic and Interpretations, “Luggage in a dream forecasts a long trip or voyage. If unable to locate lost luggage, an inheritance is coming to you or someone close to you.”

Phoney Baloney

Everyone knows that the best way to improve the public schools is to provide vouchers and charter school opportunities, especially to kids in the inner city.
Of course, Obama and his NEA henchmen are actively opposed to both.
So, which public school do the Obama daughters attend? They don’t. They are enrolled at the private University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, where annual tuition ranges from $15,528 for kindergarten to $20,445 for high school.
Obama’s popularity is one of the best reasons to decry the state of public education in this country, its failure to create an informed citizenry. How else can one explain why it is taking so long for voters to figure out what a phoney this guy really is.


In the entry immediately before this one, I mentioned that we were going to check out the boat building workshop at the Woods Hole Historical Museum on Thursday, the 24th.
Funny thing happened to me on the way.
Without going into a lot of detail, I became in urgent need of medical attention. Both James and I were taken care of swiftly and with great care and kindness by the people at the museum.
I’m much better now, and the generosity continues. My next door neighbor, a landscaper/groundskeeper, just mowed my lawn, one of the few chores that I really can’t do for myself.
I truly believe that this brutal, hot, humid weather did me in. Few of us can remember a July as bad as this one has been.

Woods Hole

The grandkids and I have been spending a lot of time in “The Hole” these days.
Robert and/or Emme have been keeping me company while James attends Children’s School of Science.
One day we went to the Aquarium, yesterday we took a tour of MBL and their Marine Resources Center.
We’ve made stops at Pie in the Sky and the Woods Hole Library.
Today, I’m planning to drop in to the Woods Hole Historical Museum for “Woods Hole Boatbuilding Demo Days”, during which volunteers will be constructing two flat-bottomed skiffs.
The kids seem to be having a good time, and besides the appeal of the area on its own, this is helping to heal my heart over the loss of my friend Carolyn. She loved Woods Hole, lived here as the significant other of a researcher and greatly enjoyed being part of the community.
I promised Carolyn before she died that I’d honor her memory by doing fun things with the kids in the places she treasured, so I think she’d have been pleased with our wanderings around the village she cherished so much.


We’re close to the half-way mark for the Barnstable County Fair, which ends this Saturday.
The kids got to do rides (those who wanted rides) and games yesterday, good timing, since Peter was recovering from oral surgery and had at least a couple of hours of peace and quiet.
All of them won prizes, a break from prior years in which hard feelings about being outdone spoiled an otherwise good time.
We got to see the raptor show, which hasn’t been at the fair for the last two years.
The day was hot and humid, unpleasant. We must have walked 200 miles.
The boys and I didn’t leave the midway until after 10. I am hoping my legs will have recovered by tomorrow.

A Dog Is a Dog Is a Dog

I don’t understand pet owners who think of their dogs as kids.
Some dog owners refer to themselves as “Mummy” and “Daddy”. They bring their dogs on “play dates”.
Worse, they expect other people to tolerate their dogs’ bad behavior as one might a neurotic child’s. “Bitsy was abused” is the favorite excuse for excessive barking, jumping on people, slobbering and even biting.
Given, it takes time and patience to be a responsible dog owner, especially if you’re raising a puppy. But that’s a far cry from bringing up a child; at least, it should be, IMHO.
I don’t think that cat owners are that irrational, but maybe it’s just that cats aren’t in-your-face kind of animals, especially the very big ones, who’d sooner eat you than beg for table scraps.

Hot Tomalley

Back in the day, we used to debate among ourselves about whether or not to eat lobster tomalley, the green stuff you see if you’re consuming a whole lobster.
According to an article in Yahoo!News, the USDA has recommended for some time against consuming the tomalley, and now the Maine Center for Disease Control also is advising consumers not to eat lobster tomalley.
Tomalley works like a liver, filtering contaminants, and the high levels of toxic algae along the Maine coast are responsible for the most recent advisory.
It’s okay to eat lobster meat, though.

To Stop & Shop

I am a loyal customer of your Mashpee store. I have no complaint at all about the store, your inventory or your employees. Indeed, I am always treated with courtesy and respect.
My reason for writing has to do with your audit policy around the handheld scanners.
I like to use the scanners and self-checkout because the process is more efficient, and I sometimes use the discount coupons.
Last evening, I was in a hurry to complete my shopping. When I got to the checkout, though, I was prevented from paying for my order because I was the subject of a random audit.
Immediately, the light at the self-checkout station starting flashing – an embarrassment because it indicates either fraudulence or incompetence on the part of the shopper.
I am an older woman, 62, but computer programming is my profession. While younger people often believe that we old-timers are incompetent about technology, many of us are not and resent being treated like simpletons.
Further, I am highly insulted by the implication that I am a thief. I’ve been audited once after a scan shopping session and found “not guilty” by store personnel. Your system has no good reason to tag me for yet another audit.
Although I am older, I have excellent credit and absolutely no criminal record. And in case you are wondering, no, I don’t believe that your system “randomly” selects people for audit. I suspect that some male chauvinist idiot who uses statistics to support their own prejudices has flagged women over 55 or 60 for particular scrutiny.
I know that the margins are thin in the grocery business and have no desire to steal from Stop & Shop. Further, I’m sure there are a lot of easy ways to steal from your stores without involving the scanner. You might consider implementing a technology that flags unscanned items when shoppers leave your premises rather than subjecting honest people to humiliation.
I have a couple of suggestions.
First, please give the consumer who has been “randomly” selected for audit the option of checking out their goods manually, rather than flashing the checkout lights to call a cashier.
Second, if a consumer has already “passed” an audit – don’t require it again within the next twelve months.
Third, you might consider doing a study of which cohorts of customers are subject to the most scanner audits. My guess is that you will find there are patterns which might surprise you. Better for you to discover this before Attorney General Coakley is asked to investigate.
Thank you for taking the time to read this message.

Circle By the Sea

The kids and I went to the year’s first Circle by the Sea on Sandy Neck Beach tonight.
We brought everything as instructed: chairs, firewood, marshmallows, bug repellant and met up with a friend whom I haven’t seen for over a year.
We enjoyed the fire, the singing and the beach, and the kids said they’d like to go back. They collected what seemed like 50 pounds of rocks, including one that my friend said was good luck because it contains a circle.
Around the time that Emme and James decided they’d had enough, we started to see lightning on the horizon. As it moved closer and the wind shifted onshore, we picked up our stuff and went back to the truck. By the time I got home, the storm had reached the Cape; according to Nexrad radar, it’s hitting the beach just about now.