How Did I Get Here?


This is not my beautiful spice cabinet:

Ok, well, it’s my spice cabinet now. See, I prefer a generally chaotic method of organizing spices. Roughly, the flavors I use a lot are toward the front. The spices I use less frequently are toward the back.

I always know, without having to think, where each spice is located. I open the door, reach in, grab what I need, shake enough into the pan on the stove, then put it back.

Top shelf, randomly speaking, is for baking stuff like vanilla and almond extract. Lower shelf front holds the salt, cumin, garlic, etc. The everyday stuff. The nutmeg is tucked over in the back right corner. Dill is in the middle right. Cocoa powder is top shelf, to the left.

See what I’m saying? Bing, bang, boom, I know where everything is.

That was all well and good until I married The Man Who Checks Expiration Dates. Or, perhaps more aptly named: Food Safety Man.

My darling one is quite diligent about checking the “use by” dates on all food in the house. When he moved in with me, he was horrified to go through my cabinets. He would bring a can or container of something to me and say, “do you realize that this expired in 1996? That means you brought it from New Mexico when it was already expired!” When he said that to me, the year was 2007. Heh.

Yeah. Well. Ok. I *might* be guilty of a teeny bit of hanging on to stuff too long. My beloved sister has had many talks with me over the course of my adult life about “just let it go.” Blame being raised by parents who remember the Great Depression, I suppose. I’d like to consider myself to be…frugal. Really, if I’m to be honest, I’m just too freaking lazy.

And so, when my sweetest went through my cabinets and threw out, oh, about 60% of what was in there…I was mildly annoyed, but I got over it. I’ve become better accustomed to his weekly (if not more frequent) going through and rearranging the fridge, throwing things out and front facing all the remaining contents. So much for my grab and go approach there, too.

And now this…my spice rack. The spices that are the heart and soul of my cooking! He did this yesterday while he was making something for dinner, so I guess I can’t really complain that loudly. But still…I heard him rustling around in there and had to sit, take several deep breaths, rake a Zen garden, chant a mantra, and play a sitar.

I gotta say, it looks pretty good now. I can’t find anything, but I’ll learn. And just as soon as I have the new organization system down, he’ll organize it again.

The spice rack was pretty tough to take, but there was something worse. I almost packed my bags when he organized….(I can hardly even say it)….my toolbox. This was a violation most egregious. My toolbox! And let me just tell you this…I have more and better tools than he does! Now that we’re married, a comingling of the tools has occurred and I may never be the same again.

Oh the horrors of community property!

Marriage is weird. Maybe this is why people usually get hitched so young. It’s easier to manage when they haven’t gotten all old and set in their ways.

Really, all this organizing and changing up my routine is probably good for me.

Just don’t tell The Good Man I said so.

I realized, belatedly, that this might just be the perfect follow up to the previous post about variety being the spice of life. Unintentional, I assure you. One of those happy coincidence type of a deals.

One To Ponder On


There’s a lady I work with who I like a lot, and she and I have become pretty good friends. We’ve decided, together, that we need to get more exercise during our long work days. To that end, we’ve started taking lunchtime walks along all the wonderful walking paths near our office.

During the walks, we generally kibitz or cuss about work or discuss the news of the day. I’ve learned that my new friend is a big fan of birds, I think she keeps three at home. She loves looking at all the wild birds out there in our marshland ponds, and I do too.

I’ve talked before about the proliferation of birds, and especially Canada geese, here in my vicinity.

Yesterday my friend and I were walking around the lake at a brisk pace when she suddenly stopped and gasped. “Look at that goose!” she said and pointed.

Running along one side our little lake is a very busy street. This goose was strutting out into traffic, headed for a sizable puddle of standing water. There must have been something tasty looking in that stale water, because the goose would not be denied, full speed ahead…until a car went zooming by, and the goose was blown back by the jet wash.

“Get back here!” my friend shouted to the unsteady goose, as though her maternal tone would make it mind its manners.

“Get back here you goose! You silly, silly goose! You’re a silly goose! Yes you are, why are you such a silly goose?”

Oddly, the goose must have known he was in the presence of One Who Knows Birds, because it did just as she asked. It looked at her warily, then that silly high stepping goose strutted its way back over to the curb, ungracefully waddled up, and went about its way munching at the green grass.

“That’s a good goose,” my friend said as we continued our walk.

I smiled to myself. Now, just who is the real silly goose? The one trying to find food for its existence, or the human hollering at a bird?


Since today is actually Thursday, then it must be time for Theme Thursday. Today’s prompt is: Silly

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane! No, wait…it’s not that at all.


Today in the San Francisco Chronicle‘s online edition, the SFGate, there was a very brief story on the front page for a few hours.

Here’s the headline:

Pot-firing catapult found at Arizona-Mexico border

Ok, in a nutshell, the story is:

“Drug smugglers trying to get marijuana across the Arizona-Mexico border apparently are trying a new approach — a catapult.

National Guard troops operating a remote video surveillance system at the Naco Border Patrol Station say they observed several people preparing a catapult and launching packages over the International Border fence last Friday evening.”

Blah, blah, blah, the Border Patrol and National Guard seized the catapult and about 4 pounds of the green stuff.

A fairly amusing story, all in. But that’s not the best part.

SFGate allows readers to comment on articles, and that’s where it gets good.

Here’s a selection of the best of what SFGate readers had to say:

“The catapult has been held without bail”

“Time for US to spend a few billion dollars to develop counter-catapult technology.”

“When trebuchets are outlawed, only outlaws will have trebuchets.”

“Total distance traveled by projectile: Over the border;
Time to impact from launch: 2.5 seconds;
Angle of launch: 45 degrees;
Temperature at time of launch: 65 degrees Fahrenheit;
Dimensions of projectile: 8 inch wide x 12 inch long cannabis;
Force of gravity: 32.15223 ft/s/s;
Muy bueno!”

(that’s geeky goodness)

“OMG it’s raining pot!”

“sounds pretty half baked.”

“No doubt these guys got the idea for their new delivery method from playing Angry Birds on their stolen iPhones.”

“They left this part of the story off:

‘Shortly after the seizure, the Mexican troops contacted the Americans and offerred to capapult 10 kilos of marijuana to the American side of the border in exchange for 10 large combination pizzas and a case of Doritos.'”

“Sophisticated criminals use a trebuchet.”

“Green Express. When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.”

“This is what you get when the smugglers trade pot to an engineer for design work…”

“Save the bales!”

“The free Mexican Air Force is flying tonight
Flying so high yi hiyeeeeee!!”

I guess I should expect no less from the Bay Area, a place notoriously in favor of the use of the same stuff that is being lobbed over the wall.

Buncha smartasses. *grin*

Image from Icanhazcheeseburger

Haaaowww, Might As Well Jump!


Oh hell, I did NOT just reference Van Halen for today’s Theme Thursday topic of jump, did I?

Oh wait. Yes I did.

Ahem. Let’s move on. Quickly.

The topic of jumping has been on my mind lately. The Good Man and I have been discussing this in hushed and worried tones.

You might remember this post from back in May where I described the miracle of my betta fish named Benito. Bubba almost died on us, but he was miraculously saved by The Good Man.

After that rough spot, our little Benito thrived but was fairly timid. The Good Man did some reading up and found that a male betta will become more aggressive as he becomes comfortable with his surroundings.

Well, we’ve had Benito for nine months now and Mr Fish has become VERY comfy in his own little fish house.

So comfy that he’s become a very naughty fish.

When we feed him, he loves to make sport of it. He’ll leap at the food nuggets like he’s got Jaws-like delusions of grandeur.

He’ll hide back behind his heater, and when I drop a pellet and then point to it with my finger, he’ll come charging out ignoring the food pellet and leap to bite my finger.

I swear I hear a tiny “rowrrrr” every time he nips my finger.

Feeding him has become a chore because he’s too busy trying to bite me or do a flying leap onto the food pellet that he misses the damn thing and has to chase it around the bowl.

The Good Man thinks this is funny and encourages him, making his own “rowrr” sounds. Must be a guy thing….

Anyhow, the other day, The Good Man was on feeding duty and he had the packet of pellets in his hand. TGM turned to say something to me, and when he turned back, Benito had jumped clean out of the water and landed on the table.

He’d seen the pellet pack and his buddy TGM and it was ON!

We scooped Benito up and put him back in his bowl and he’s no worse for the wear, and no less ready to leap for his food pellets.

We have to keep his water level a bit low and keep the lid down so we can contain his exuberance. I knew that bettas were notorious jumpers, but come oooon.

An aside for you fish folks who might question: yes, we tested to be sure he wasn’t leaping because his water was ammoniated. Nope, he was just being naughty.

This morning I decided to try to take a photo of my little fish. Having the camera near the bowl stresses him out, so I try not to do it very often or for a very long at a time. Plus, he’s a fast little bugger and hard to photograph.

But here is my little bubba fish (terrible angle, makes him look huge!). Don’t be fooled by the cute eyes…he’s ready to jump. He’d already flared at the camera and leapt at my fingers by this point.

Boys can be so rude! Our other little fish Margaret is such a sweet little girl and easy to feed.

Not so with this troublemaker: