Talkin’ Trash

trash
One minute the trash icon was hanging out in its usual place on my desktop. A minute later, it was gone. I tried restarting. No luck. I’m a neat freak. If there’s no way to tidy my desktop, I could have a major meltdown. Forced to tour my system, I found it (don’t ask me where) and dragged it to its’ rightful place, then dumped a file. Whew. It worked. Today, I booted the PC to find two trash icons on my desktop. One won’t go away. I’m beginning to understand what Sartre went through when he wrote “No Exit.”

Ceramics Class: A Postscript

Oceans and sky
If I had a fireplace, I’d ritually burn my ceramics class paperwork. Instead, it’s being recycled as I write this postscript. Gone are daunting details of projects that kept me awake at night. Vanquished is the lone test bearing an 81-percent mark — a harsh blow for one who accepts only two grades: A and all others. Dumped, too, are feckless sketches summarily rejected each time we were asked for multiple ideas. I’ll miss the fun but not the killer timetable that caused me to ask myself daily: “So, whose brilliant idea was it take this class for college credits, anyway?”

The Perfect Houseguest

The grands
Picking Tim up from the Illinois Cremation Society was surreal. Located at the top of an Oak Brook skyscraper, the office panorama is reminiscent of the view from heaven. ID was required before I was allowed to take possession of him (do random people claim other people’s remains, I wondered?), at which point I took him home and he made no complaints about my driving. Tuna promptly lay down beside the bag, offering his company for the night. Turns out Tim was the perfect houseguest, neither insisting on meals nor whining about the thermostat. He can stay here any time.

Ode to a Bloody Good Draw

blood draw
Oh, no! Another blood test, to learn if I am sick,
My history of hits and misses chronicles each stick.
My tiny veins have suffered from untold indignities,
For with each sample came the pain including all of these:
Redundant pokes, enormous clots, huge bruises in bold shades,
Each a tale of pricks gone wrong, disguised beneath Band-aids.
Until the day I met one tech; she bragged, “I’m just that good,”
“I’ll get a pain-free sample, tho’ you don’t believe I could.”
And so she did exactly that, prompting congratulation,
If Dracula had her technique, he’d have a better reputation.

Chick Peas Roasting on an Open Fire

garbanzos
I’ve always wanted a toaster-oven so I gave myself one as an “I survived 2013” present. Given the relationship between Jews and chickpeas – could we survive in any wilderness without hummus or falafel? – I inaugurated my new appliance by making a favorite snack: garlic-toasted garbanzo beans. This treat beats greasy chips and snacks any day for taste and it’s the epitome of healthy food since it’s loaded with fiber and nutrients. Even swimming in olive oil, they’re good for me so I made enough for now and later. Sadly, I couldn’t stop with now. I ate later, too. My bad.

Long Live Holiday Traditions

Walgreens
It’s Christmas Day. Christians go to church, exchange gifts and overeat. Jews hit movie theaters and Chinese restaurants. Me? I go to Walgreen’s. I’ve been trying to figure out what there is at Walgreen’s that compels me to show up on Christmas each year and I think it’s reassurance: once-upon-a-time, when retailers wouldn’t dream of opening on December 25th, Walgreens’s was the exception. Shoppers with emergencies found band-aids, aspirin, disgruntled staff and a selection of clearance goods. This tradition seems to keep the earth correctly tilted on its’ axis, so if you’re looking for me today, check the cosmetics aisle.

I’ll Have What She’s Having

porn lunch
Porn websites are marketing goldmines for the brave and fearless. Consider the relationship between the adult film industry and food delivery services. Typically, X-rated sites feature only ads for other porn sites ’cause legit businesses are fearful of ruining their images. Not Eat24, a catering biz seeking a non-competitive market. Their ad, a sexy sandwich beneath the headline, “I Want to be in Your Mouth,” went viral, receiving tens of thousands of hits; three times the number the same ad generated on Google, Twitter and Facebook combined. Conclusion reached? When profits are involved, should reputation issues be on the menu?

Jindal All the Way

Jindal
I wrote off Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal after he stood woodenly in front of TV cameras delivering a stiff rebuttal to an early Obama State of the Union address. Since then, I haven’t witnessed anything that changed my mind – until Jindal issued a statement this year imploring Republicans to “stop being the stupid party.” Wow. Jindal might be salvageable enough to join Party moderates, I decided – until the Gov inserted himself into the Duck Dynasty dribble. Bobby! I implore you to take my holiday greeting to heart:

‘Tis the season to make merry,
Not the time to be Rick Perry.

How to Ruin a Good Movie

Hiss-Ball-Ah
Would someone explain how Kate Hudson wound up in “The Reluctant Fundamentalist”? The film, set in Pakistan and New York, chronicles the journey of a Princeton-educated Pakistani who becomes the consummate uber-capitalist, only to find himself wrestling with ideological choices. Hudson plays a New York photographer. Her role – bedding the lead character — is so non-essential, the script would have improved greatly had the role been eliminated. I’m guessing some studio wonk insisted on inserting a bankable starlet into the mix, but Kate Hudson with dyed black hair? I’d have been more interested if they had dressed her in burkas.

What’s All the Flap?

perfume
I can tell when perfume brands add fragrance strips to print magazines ads, even from a distance. Sure enough, I’m greeted by a gorgeous couple, steaming up the page while inviting readers to share their intimate moment by copping a whiff. But, my nose mustn’t work right because these samples all smell like different versions of bug spray: Fendi. Chanel. Calvin Klein. I can’t differentiate. I’m not convinced smelly ads sell more perfume. Why not keep the photography, dump the sample, save money and reduce the price of the fragrances? Sorry. I had a logic attack. What was I thinking?