Wednesday, June 21, 2006

"Where do you summer?"

Patrick Stewart (snooty chef) interrogating Steve Martin (wacky weather guy) who wants a reservation at the exclusive L'Idiot, in the movie LA Story.

Generally, I summer at home, in San Francisco. Like most working folks, I work year round and well, vacation time in huge chunks (2 weeks or more) is hard to come by when you work for a huge corporation. I'm not one to carry over vacation time from the previous year just so I could be off for a month next year. Plus, I'd be afraid to leave my work for others to handle for more than a week, which bothers me on a couple of levels. But that's a story for another day.

This year, my 2nd week of vacation will be spent camping at Calaveras Big Trees State Park. The 1st week was spent at home with a few days away in Yosemite. Eric & I have been to Calaveras before, but that was about 7 years ago. We try to alternate a big vacation (something that involves a popular tourist destination, plane tickets, rent-a-car, etc) with a modest car camping trip and/or a few mini-weekend getaways. Last year we went to Oahu, this year it's camping. Next year, Hawaii again (a friend is getting married out so we're turning it into a vacation) and who knows the year after that, but most likely somewhere in California or at least in the continental US.

Random car trips to nowhere are fun during our 'off' years. That's another reason to go on the cheap every other year or so, to save up for the big fancy vacations. We can head out pretty much north, south or east, at least on some road we've never been on, and we'll be content just to make the journey to a place we've never been to before. I've been highlighting an AAA map of all the roads Eric has driven for me since 1995, and it impresses me every time I look at it. Some roads are more memorable than others, usually because they are such unique experiences.

For summer reading, I will be dragging along my copy of Nasty Bits. I made it to Anthony Bourdain's book signing this past Saturday and got my copy autographed. I'm really looking forward to getting this much needed break. Woowoo!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Flower report

A flower spike and 1 flower bud! There would have been a second one but it shriveled up :( I took a chance and hoped these back bulbs from 2 dendrobium hybrids that have long gone would flower. I moved one to the window sill in the kitchen and the other outside to the balcony. I figured, since my dendrobium kingianum started flowering once I set it outside, maybe the greater temperature range is what these guys needed too. Oddly, the plant I kept inside is making the flower, the one outside does have a healthy 'eye' that might produce a flower. When I potted these bulbs, I'd already lost the tags, so until they flowered, I didn't know what color the flowers would be. One of the original plants had pink/white striated petals and the other was a deep red-burgundy color, very velvety looking. That's the one above. The last time it gave me a flower, I fiddled with it too much trying to stake it and I broke it. It had 3 flowers. Argh... and that was about 4 years ago. Just as I threatened to toss it, I saw it had potential and now, it's about to flower! Sometimes, I think these plants really do hear me...

Other orchids about to bloom: paphiopedilum, miltonidium, epidendrum. My Den. Mingle's Sapphire is fading and I harvested the last 2 cymbidium spikes from my balcony. The aphids were going rabid (it's so satisfying and, at the same time, disgusting to squish them by hand) and the few blossoms I saved, I made a mini-arrangement with a floral frog pinholder and a tealight candle holder.

Non-orchids in bloom: african violet. I need to repot again, it's 'neck' is getting long. My peace lily just did it's thing, spewing out all kinds of powder all over the stereo.

Updates: paphiopedilum, miltonidium, epidendrum now in bloom!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Flickr fun!

I've been having lots of fun putting photos up on Flickr and nosing around to see what other folks have been doing for ages. OMG - so much to see!

So many photos are up so quickly. No need to wait for film to be developed and then scan the photos. Folks just come back from a day at the local street festival or vacation and boom - the photos are up! It's so fast and seems so simple.

I want a digital camera, but I don't need one. Until I get one, I'll wander through my photos and scan the ones I want to share, use the one my husband borrows from the school and continue taking photos with my pokey kit.

I'm also working on getting photos on an archive disk from Kodak Gallery so I can bombard my Flickr account with more photos! I'm just waiting to hear back from them regarding the CD they send, if they're copy-protected or not. They shouldn't be, seeing as the photos are mine to begin with. But you never know and I want to make sure before plunking down $50-something dollars for 1700+ photos.

Saturday, June 3, 2006

Sick & Twisted in the past

I have to thank Dave Burns (wherever he may be!) for taking Eric & myself to our first Spike & Mike Sick & Twisted Festival of Animation back in 1991. Cheap, gross, disturbing and at the same time entertaining, going to the animation festival was fun during college. We went again a few years later, I think it was in '99 and the atmosphere wasn't the same, probably because we'd gotten older. The number of pot smokin' vagrant-looking kiddies appeared to have sky-rocketed and they seemed extra dingey and rude. Plus the only memorable thing I saw was Billy's Balloon by Don Hertzfeldt.

The most recent animation show we went to was, oddly enough, called the Animation Show in 2003.

Below are a couple of barf bags and program covers from long past tours of SMSTFA from my "collection" of ephemera. On the Vomit-Glossary barf bag, from left to right, top to bottom: