Friday, September 01, 2017

Saturday 9

9 to 5 (1980) 

1) This song begins with the clacking of a typewriter. Did you ever learn to touch type -- beginning with your fingers on "the home row" -- or do you hunt and peck? I was a very good touch typist, and it comes in handy now on this MacBook. Part of why I find texting so frustrating is that I can't lay my fingers across "the home row."

2) Much of the video for this song revolves around the office coffee room. Are you enjoying a beverage as you answer these 9 questions? Ice water. I'm trying to drink more water. It's a painless way to live a little healthier.

3) This week's artist, Dolly Parton, loves telling the story of how she once lost a Dolly Parton lookalike contest. What contest or sweepstakes have you entered lately? I won $2 in the Illinois State Lottery this past week!

4) Dolly is one smart blonde. Early in her career she set up a company so she could retain the publishing rights for all her songs. Two alone -- "9 to 5" and "I Will Always Love You" -- made her a multi-millionaire because they have been recorded so many times. Do you have a good head for business? No. And as retirement approaches, I wish I did.

5) Dolly is a crusader for childhood literacy and her organization, Dolly's Imagination Library, has donated more than 10 million books all over the country. What's the last book you read? The last book I finished was Kennedy and Nixon by Chris Matthews. I wasted a ton of time on a mystery I really wasn't into, and I regret it. Both spending the time and abandoning it. For some reason I always feel bad when I give up on a book (unless it sucks, and this one didn't; it just didn't hit the spot for me at this time.)

6) This weekend may offer a golden opportunity for napping and sleeping in. Do you snore? Yes. Loudly, I'm told.

7) Labor Day was introduced to celebrate the achievements of the American worker. How many different employers have you had? Ten (I think).

8) Will you be attending a Labor Day picnic or barbecue? No. I'm cocooning, and thoroughly looking forward to it.

9) Labor Day traditionally marks the beginning of the new school year. When she was a kid, Samantha was crazy for her brand new box of 96 Crayola Crayons. It even had a sharpener in the back! What do you remember about preparing to go back to school? If you're a parent with school-age kids, are they ready? I remember that late-summer shopping trip. There were two independently-owned department stores where my mom loved buying our clothes. She enjoyed those excursions more than I did. She was always very particular about our hair cuts and our clothes.

I passed my blood test!

I just got word that my cholesterol (184) and my LDL/HDL ratio (1.75) are "desirable." My other lab tests came back within the "acceptable" range. I was approved for my $50,000 life insurance policy.

I happened to have a doctor's appointment this morning. My GP was very happy that the tests were so thorough -- saving her lab the task of drawing my blood and her the time of waiting for the results. And she thinks the results are "exciting." Apparently, after reviewing these tests and the results of my colonoscopy, she believes me to be healthy.

The death of my friend Barb's husband has been on my mind. He thought he was a healthy 67-year-old with a cough and then, 11 months later, he was dead. So I'm relieved to learn that all the indicators I can't see for myself point to my being OK.

Friday 56

The Friday 56

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
(If you have to improvise, that's ok.)
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it)
*Post it.


Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi with Curt Gentry.

This true-crime classic is not a whodunnit, in that we all know who did it. And we're probably all very familiar with the gruesome nature of the IT at hand. The value of this book is the dignity it bestows upon the victims of those murdered by The Manson "Family" back in August 1969. Never maudlin but often sweet in choosing which details to include, Mr. Bugliosi makes the victims as real and memorable as the colorful perpetrators. 

Of Sharon Tate:
She was not a star, not yet. Her career seemed to hesitate on the edge of a breakthrough, but it could have easily remained stationary, or gone the other way.

But for the first time in her life, Sharon's ambition had slipped to second place. Her marriage and her pregnancy had become her whole life. According to those closest to her, she seemed oblivious to all else.

August Happiness Challenge -- Day 31

Rizz appreciates "lucky"
On Day 31, I was happy for a heads-up. Remember Napoleon? He's the wild-eyed little kitten who was rescued by a homeless couple. I may never see the little fella again, and today I was pleased and relieved to learn why.

His human got the offer of an apprenticeship! He can learn how to become a window washer in the Indianapolis area. He told me it takes 60 hours of training,* so he and his wife and the kitten are headed to Indiana to give that a try. He said his prospective employer understands that they are homeless and living out a tent, and has made allowances. His wife, however, is not as fortunate. A professional hairdresser licensed in Iowa, she can't very well show up to take her Illinois (or Indiana) state boards if she isn't cleaned and well groomed. So they understand the first step is for him to get this job, so they can afford a shelter that allows them to bathe thoroughly and on a regular basis.

As he related this tale, he said he couldn't believe how "lucky" he was that his prospective employer understood he was homeless. I told him, "You deserve this luck because you saved a life."

"No," he said, "Napoleon saved our lives." He told me the story of how he found the kitten in the bushes of Millennium Park, curled up beside his dead mother cat. No other littermates were in sight. The human told me how and his wife wiped the kitten's infected eyes clean with tissues and bottled water and decided to keep him. They love caring for him. This kitten has given their lives new meaning.

I know cats. Napoleon is -- right now, at least -- healthy. Friendly and fearless. When I kneel down to pet him, he climbs right up onto my lap and sometimes tries to get into my purse. I've seen him when dogs pass, and he doesn't care. This is an animal who has never known anything but affection. How can I not root for people who share their reservoir of affection with a helpless, abandoned kitten?

This month, I've become attached to this little family. I'll likely never see them again. I'm so happy that the reason is a positive turn in their fortunes, and not something horrible.

 *I believe he said 60 hours. A bus went by during this part of the story.

If you want to play along, just come back here (meaning to this blog, not this individual post) each day in August, looking for the Happy Cub. Every day I will try to have a post with the headline: August Happiness Challenge: Day [X]. Leave a comment and then post your own daily happiness, with AugustHappiness Challenge in the title to make it easy to find.