Observations, redux

There is a simple, delicious beauty in the toasted tomato sandwich. And real (not flavourless, supermarket-bought) tomatoes and a grainy, not-white bread are essential. As is plenty of mayo and pepper.

However, it is unpossible for any toasted tomato sandwich that you make for yourself to ever taste quite as good as one made by your Dad (especially when he’s using the tomatoes he grows in the flower bed beside the garage).

The sandwiches are much like toast with peanut butter and grape jam (cut into fours) or dip eggs (soft-boiled eggs with buttered toast soldiers) that way…


1) When you get home from work, and the kitten is attempting to play with one of the dog’s toys, which is bigger than the kitten’s own head (though the kitten appears to have managed to get it downstairs), and you find a pair of your underwear on the computer, you really wonder WTF the pets get up to during the day…

2) When you have not yet gotten your ass fully in gear and completed the purchase of a friend‘s birthday presents (about two weeks late now…) and she sends YOU presents, you feel like a schmuck… That said… PRESENTS!!!

Ice Bat Ugly Doll and Moist Gnome lip balm

That is an Ugly Doll (Ice Bat), which I have long-coveted. I do not have a name for him yet. The other item is “Moist Gnome” lip balm, which disturbs me on a number of levels… It also tastes and smells just like the old formulation of The Body Shop’s “relaxing” aromatherapy oil — clary sage and rosemary and suchlike. It’s interesting. And made by gnomes…

Stuff I’ve been perusing and/or forwarding today.

Kudos for the sources of these go to the interweb in general, my RSS feeds, WNET, and Sherry in particular…

The Art of the Shiv (For some reason this made me think of Dana… not sure why…)

SkyMall’s 10 Worst Products (#6 is wildly amusing because it was not only featured in a Penny Arcade comic, but was also brought up during the Divas’ cottage weekend.)

Baby paraphernalia… by Jim Henson! (I agree with Karen… kinda creepy)

In age where it’s all about baby, the childfree are fighting back (Some absolutely hilarious bon mots.)

Sorry, but my children bore me to death! (A reply to the child-free post. General consensus, this woman is a twit… or a twat, whatever.)

Mothers Anonymous (The first kid-related link reminded me of this, which came out for WNET discussion the other week.)

World Nomads (Co-workers and managers of mine are well-familiarized with my feelings on the subject of travel insurance companies and their web presences. It’s hideous, for soooooo many reasons. However, these folks are getting a lot of things right. The site is clean, friendly, and easily navigated. Their FAQ contains actual useful information. Policy purchases contain a charitable donation by default. And they are all over the idea of web-based community building, which is totally the way the web is going. And it’s just the thing for the backpacking community, who need a single, global point of contact with their people and for spreading word of mouth, which is the lifeblood of that mode of travel.)

“Where do they click?” (Neither Sherry nor I fit into the established patterns. Hmm.)

Waterloo-Wellington Blogs (Getting a feel for this org, and pondering potential involvement.)

‘Redneck’ region writes own script (Sherry and I were impressed with the number of stereotypes and amount of propaganda crammed into this one article.)

New T-Shirt Hell shirt (Yup, still funny.)

Remodel survivors: Ballard dream home was worth the pain (Even reading about renos kinda bothers me now, even those of other people who were way more miserable than I was…)

Tackle a remodel without trashing a relationship (Sidebar article to the one above. Good points, though not entirely relevant in our situation.)

Grunge Inc. (Uh-huh.)

Captain Stubing.

Divas’ Weekend, Wasaga Beach, July 28th – 30th, 2006.

Nestled amongst the trees, a block or so from the beach, one finds a little blue and white cottage, and in the backyard, our ebullient hostess. And so it begins.

booze and lime

A travel mug will hold 3/4 of a bottle of Beaujolais. This is important because you should never allow a travel mug to hold 3/4 of a bottle of Beaujolais. Let alone two of them. Plus the two glasses that didn’t fit… And Chivas? Is not “like rye”. (Cottaging calls for atypical drinking habits.) Helen didn’t even kill us for calling her at 3am. That woman is far too good-natured…

sunset at the beach

Sunset arrives; it’s a gorgeous, warm night. Time to head for the beach.

sunset at the beach

A lake like bathwater. People were in the water til dark. We pulled up a picnic table and watched the stars come out. There are never enough stars in the city.

friends in profile

moon over the water

After we returned from the beach, we sat in the backyard, drinking, smoking, talking. Musical accompaniment was provided by such diverse artists as 50 Cent, The Violent Femmes, Boney M, and Johnny Cash. At one point, Kim leapt up, and, in a shocked and horrified tone, exclaimed, “We have to go to bed!” To which Sherry and I replied, confusedly, “Why?” Because, as Kim noted, re-checking her watch, “It’s five to three!” Umm… To which we replied, with the power of logic on our side, “But we’re still drinking…” And so we stayed up until at least 4am. When we were done drinking. 🙂

We were not blessed with an all-sunny weekend, weathering intermittent rain and storms on Saturday. Granted, when one is curled up with Smarties and a book and one’s friends, watching Mother Nature howl outside the window is not so bad.

wet flip flops on the patio

Watching friends trying not to get washed away while attempting to go out for a smoke is, however, even better. 🙂

the girls in the rain

In the afternoon, while sitting on the patio, a crazy orange-ish cloud rolled in like the Four Horsemen from the direction of the lake. A deluge followed. It was lovely, though a few pine trees were bending fairly precariously in the wind.


The sun came out after it was over. Unfortunately, it never quite seemed to be done raining, so we didn’t spend nearly as much beach time as planned. In lieu of that, pedicures were done, Trivial Pursuit was cheated at, trashy magazines were analyzed, snacks were eaten, naps were napped.

wet trees with sun breaking through

Muskoka chair in the backyard

Sunday morning we cooked up the traditional fare of bacon and eggs, and, once tidied up, organized ourselves and headed for the highway. A lovely weekend, improve-able only with the presence of all the Divas, a little more sun, and possibly a little less wine (at one time), and a whole lot fewer cigarettes (for me).