Monday, November 29, 2010


Look at my niece and brother and their chickens.


So there I was at Milltown in Carrboro, happily sipping a cold draft De Koninck, making the emphatic point that biannual means every other year. The gadget people in attendance were able to pull up online definitions showing the primary definition to be "twice yearly" and a secondary definition of "biennial," or "occurring every two years." And I was thinking that my Merriam Webster would know better. It did not. I find this unacceptable.

Our bicentennial celebration has occurred only once, correctly, in 1976--not twice centennially since 1776. If the incorrect definition had been applied here, we would by now have four bicentennial celebrations under our American belts. We do not.

Merriam Webster's primary definition of bimonthly is "occurring every two months." There's further confusion. The adjective biweekly is primarily defined as "occurring twice a week," but the noun biweekly is "a publication issued every two weeks."

Merriam Webster adds this little blurb, about bi- generally: "This ambiguity has been in existence for nearly a century and a half and cannot be eliminated by the dictionary. The chief difficulty is that many users of these words assume that others know exactly what they mean, and they do not bother to make their context clear."

Reminds me of the this/next confusion. "I'll see you next Sunday." "Wait, do you mean this Sunday or next Sunday?" "I mean the next Sunday that will be upon us." "Wait, so, this Sunday?" "I don't know anymore." And so on.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Tonight we're going to the Spelling Bee. I'm going to contest.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

In-Laws At Sea

Kimberly's parents loaded up their sailboat and shoved off from New Bern Sunday morning for a 6-month adventure. We get these nifty little daily alerts in our e-mail inboxes to let us know where they are. Here's yesterday evening's check-in.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

An Interesting Day

High, high excitement this morning as I worked a volunteer shift at Jane's elementary school's book fair. A 5th-grade boy wandered around the hallways before class with an armload of new books (including multiple copies of the same book), handing them out to his friends. Then a horrible rumor started: he'd stolen them! The assistant principal and the book-fair organizer started asking questions, and, no, he hadn't stolen them. One of the cashiers specifically remembered his paying--very proudly and ostentatiously--with a $100 bill.

Then his mother showed up at the school in tears. She was wailing and carrying on, and no one could calm her down enough to figure out why she was upset. We're still not sure why she came to the school to report this, but it turns out money was stolen from her purse that morning (at home, at the school? It's not clear). So, yes, the son had stolen $100 from his mother and promptly spent $81 of it at the book fair. Recovering the books became an hourslong ordeal, because the friends to whom he had distributed the loot were scattered among several classes. All but one book was recovered. Bottom-line loss to the mother: $6.99.

Monday, November 15, 2010


A soccer friend showed me this.

Go to Google Maps.
Click "get directions."
Enter Japan as start point, China as destination.
Scroll down to #43.

Not technically the Pacific, but still cute. Another soccer friend pointed out similar cuteness for San Diego to Honolulu, at #15, this time with a kayak.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Unnecessary Censorship

Jimmy Kimmel's show has this clever thing called Unnecessary Censorship, which I find kneeslappingly funny.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Random Video Fun

Some fun video links that have nothing to do with anything.

A vegetable orchestra.

This guy has 3 cm clearance on each side to park his car.

Kittens on a slide.

This could be a Wheel of Fortune record.

Some bloopers: Little House, Back to the Future, Waltons.

Steve Martin's atheist song.

Remember this one? It's FunnySad.

Awwwww, awwwwww, and awwwwwww.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Play Slam

Friday night I attended my first Play Slam at the ArtsCenter. Big, big fun. I hope to go again next year. My friend Paul submitted a script and had his play performed, though he didn't win. Sniff.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Ooo, check it out. FriendGregg came to town and took pictures.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Monday Lunch

Halloween night lasted until well past 10 pm, so it was a good thing that the kids had no school Monday. A neighbor friend had to go in to work for a meeting and asked me would I mind her kids for two hours and she'd bring some lunch over. Lunch was a big ol' casserole dish packed with lasagna, enough for at least ten kids. And since ten kids were hanging around that day, woo hoo, group lunch! Another neighbor friend brought grapes, I sliced apples, and presto--lunch.

Monday, November 1, 2010


I'm halfway through a Dutch movie called Wat Zien Ik. I don't like it so far. I like silly movies and all, but the silliness lacks something I can't put my tookus on.