Thursday, November 30, 2017

That's Where (Six Sentence Story) and Good Fences

“Mom, when did you get here?” Julia asked, running to hug the figure in the doorway. 

“Just a few minutes ago, and why am I not surprised that my eccentric father built a hidden room to hold his treasures?  Will you look at this,” she noticed the shelves on the wall and walked over, continuing “there was only one of them in the jewelry box and I’ve been wondering where the mate was to my mom’s favorite pair of earrings!”

“I’m Diane, by the way, Denarius’ daughter,” she said after picking up the earring, turning to Jonathan and Buddy.

“Why would Grandpa have had one earring down here and the other in the jewelry box he gave you?” Julia asked.

“Tell you what,” Diane said, “it’s late, lets go out and get dinner and we can talk, I think I’ve put together enough for us to be able to figure it all out,” and Buddy yelled, “I second that motion, I’m starving!”

Linking up with Zoe's Uncharted Blog, where she hosts Six Sentence Stories, and the cue is Mate.

(This is part of a continuing story.  If you wish to read the previous installents, click on the Jonathan page.)


Good Fences

Gosia, of Looking for Identity, has taken over Good Fences, and it's now Good Fences Around The World.  Post a picture of a fence or gate, link back to her blog, and go visit others to see what interesting fences there are out in this big world.

A gate in the fence around the reflection garden at church.

Today is:

Bizarre Bazaar -- Richmond, VA, US (Christmas shop until you drop; through Sunday)

Bonifacio Day -- Philippines

Christmas Festival at St. Olaf -- St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN, US (600 student musicians perform sacred and folk songs from around the world; through Sunday)

Cities for Life Day -- commemorates the abolition of the death penalty in many countries

Clear Up The Clutter Day -- internet generated, and what!?! in one day!

Computer Security Day -- International (sponsored by The Association for Computer Security Day; often held by some organizations/companies on another day of the week if it falls on a weekend)  

Feast of Hecate, Goddess of the Crossroads -- Ancient Roman Calendar (also revered by the Greeks, Egyptians, and came from the Carians of the Bronze Age)

Ham and Roast Beef Night -- internet generated, but a good idea for a make your own sandwich dinner

Independence Day -- Barbados(1966); Yemen(1967)

Mawlid an Nabi -- Islam/Muslim (Prophet's Birthday, celebration begins at sunset)

National Christmas Tree Lighting -- Washington, D.C., US

National Day -- Benin

National Meth Awareness Day

National Mousse Day 

Perpetual Youth Day -- Dick Clark's birth anniversary

Regina Mundi Day -- South Africa

Saint Andrew the Apostle's Day (Patron of anglers/fishermen, fish dealers/fish mongers, maidens, old maids/spinsters, single lay women, singers, women who wish to become mothers; Spanish armed forces; Achaia; Greece; Russia; Scotland; Amalfi, Italy; Antey-Saint-Andre, Italy; Berchtesgaden, Germany; Burgundy, France; Cartosio, Italy; Confienti, Italy; Constantinople, Turkey; Encinasola, Huelva, Spain; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Grongnardo, Italy; Lampertheim, Germany; Luqa, Malta; Patras, Greece; Plymouth, England; Samolaco, Italy; San Andreas, California; Victoria, British Columbia; against gout, sore throats) related observances:
    Argyle Day
    National Day -- Scotland
    Sfantul Andrei -- Romania

Stay Home Because You're Well Day -- sponsored by the Wellness Permission League -- if you get in trouble with the boss, make sure they will take the fall!

Tori No Ichi -- Japan (the third and final "rooster day" of November, so called because it is held on the three days of the rooster this month, in which to wish good luck and prosperity at temple and shrine ceremonies around the country, and celebrate with a fair)

Whisp and Thread Fair -- Fairy Calendar

Anniversaries Today:

Lucille Ball marries Desi Arnaz, 1940

Birthdays Today:

Elisha Cuthbert, 1982
Clay Aiken, 1978
Jessalyn Gilsig, 1971
Sandra Oh, 1970
Amy Ryan, 1969
Ben Stiller, 1965
Bo Jackson, 1962
Colin Mochrie, 1957
Billy Idol, 1955
Shuggie Otis, 1953
Mandy Patinkin, 1952
David Mamet, 1947
Noel Paul Stookey, 1937
Ridley Scott, 1937
Abbie Hoffman, 1936
G. Gordon Liddy, 1930
Dick Clark, 1929
Joan Ganz Cooney, 1929
Robert Guillaume, 1927
Richard Crenna, 1926
Shirley Chisholm, 1924
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., 1923
Gordon Parks, 1912
Winston Churchill, 1874
L(ucy) M(aude) Montgomery, 1874 (Anne of Green Gables)
Mark Twain, 1835
Oliver Winchester, 1810
Jonathan Swift, 1667
Philip Sydney, 1554

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"Thriller"(Michael Jackson Album), 1982
"The Wall"(Pink Floyd album), 1979
Brian's Song(TV movie), 1971
Bwana Devil(Film, first 3-D movie), 1952
The Joy of Cooking(Publication date), 1931
"Le Cid"(Opera), 1885

Today in History:

Amsterdam bans assembly of heretics, 1523
Death count by plague in Venice is officially set at 16,000, 1630
Beijing earthquake causes 100,000+ deaths, 1731
Britain signs agreement recognizing US independence, 1782
Peter Leopold Joseph of Habsburg-Lorraine, Grand Duke of Tuscany, promulgates a penal reform making his country the first state to abolish the death penalty. November 30 is therefore commemorated by 300 cities around the world as Cities for Life Day, 1786
Spain cedes her claims to Louisiana Territory to France, 1803
First ground is broken at Allenburg for the building of the original Welland Canal, 1824
First Welland Canal opens for a trial run, 5 years to the day from the ground breaking, 1829
Work begins on the first US underwater highway tunnel, in Chicago, 1866
The first international soccer football game is held, in Glasgow; Scotland-England 0-0, 1872
The first commercially successful AC electric power plant opens, Buffalo, NY, 1886
A German engineer patents front-wheel drive for automobiles, 1900
American Old West: Second-in-command of Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch gang, Kid Curry Logan, is sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with hard labor, 1902
Pike Place Market is dedicated in Seattle, Washington, 1907
The Crystal Palace in Hyde Park London destroyed by fire, 1936
Baseball's Negro National League disbands, two years after major league baseball integrated, 1948
In Sylacauga, Alabama, United States, the Hodges Meteorite crashes through a roof and hits a woman taking an afternoon nap in the only documented case of a human being hit by a rock from space, 1954
Exxon and Mobil sign a $73.7 billion USD agreement to merge, thus creating Exxon-Mobil, the world's largest company, 1998
Longtime Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings of Salt Lake City, Utah finally loses, leaving him with US$2,520,700, television's biggest game show winnings, 2004
John Sentamu becomes the first black archbishop in the Church of England with his enthronement as the 97th Archbishop of York, 2005
The first human face transplant takes place in France, 2005
Enzo di Fabrizio, physics professor at Magna Graecia University in Catanzaro, Italy, successfully takes the first photograph of DNA, 2012

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

'Tis the Season, Christmas Card Season (Wordless Wednesday) and Words for Wednesday

Linking up with Wordless Wednesday.


This month, Elephant's Child is hosting Words for Wednesday, in which two groups of 6 words are provided, and you are challenged to write a story for each set, or one story incorporating them all.  

This is part of a serial story, and if you click on the "Alice" page above, you can read the previous segments, with last week's segment at the bottom.

The list of this week's prompt words and my story follows:

  1. invincible
  2. wander
  3. goofy
  4. supreme
  5. purring
  6. pretend


  1. linen
  2. kick
  3. puny
  4. immense
  5. zoom
  6. sound

Between the candle’s glow and the small warming fire in the fireplace, Alice was in no danger of being completely in the dark, but she still hated that the electric lights had cut off.  She didn’t express it as such, but the scientist part of her felt almost INVINCIBLE when she was surrounded by even the simplest technology that separated her from the forebears who had hauled water from the old well and used kerosene lanterns.  Not a sense of superiority, but more a gratitude that she had so much more available to her.

She heard a PURRING by her feet and reached down with her free hand to pick up the kitten she’d adopted the week before.  PUNY and underfed, she still wondered how it managed to WANDER up to her house, and it had won her heart with its GOOFY big ears and propensity to ZOOM all over the house, playing with everything it found.

As Alice listened to the “your call is important to us” message from the electric company, wishing they would hurry and take her report of the power outage, she heard another SOUND.  At first she couldn’t tell if she’d really heard it, or where it was coming from.  She set the phone down and with IMMENSE concentration, strained to listen beyond the kitten’s purr.

It came again, and this time it was unmistakeable.  Someone was at the back door.  At first the noises were quiet, then came the noise of a solid KICK to the door.  Someone was trying to break in.

With SUPREME effort not to scream, she got up silently, scooped the kitten in one hand and the phone in the other, and headed for the root cellar.  Not trusting that her relatives would keep their distance as they’d been told to do, she had turned the cellar into what she called a tornado shelter to make it more acceptable.  She had stocked it with emergency food, water, candles, flashlights, even some LINEN, a futon and an emergency toilet in case she ever got trapped and had to spend a night there.

Pulling back the cellar door that was in the floor under the kitchen table, she crawled down a couple of steps and quietly lowered the door.  She threw the bar that would lock her in by the light her phone provided, and hung up on the still not responding electric company.  Dialing 911, she thought to herself, Now even Eugenie cannot PRETEND I’m being paranoid.

Today is:

Christmas on the River -- Demopolis, AL, US (celebrations Southern style, including a Barbecue Cook-off; through Sunday)

Dita e Clirimit -- Albania (Liberation Day)

Electronic Greetings Day -- sponsored by Wellcat Holidays  

Fairy Flute Fantasy -- Fairy Calendar

Festival of Saturnia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (for the Sons of Saturn; Jupiter, Neptune, and Pluto)

Holiday Ale Festival -- Portland, OR, US (beer, outdoors, in the cold, in December, but it is seriously good beer and worth it; through Sunday)

International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People -- UN

National Chocolates Day -- yes, another one

National Lemon Creme Pie Day

National Unity Day -- Vanuatu

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting -- NY, NY, US

St. Andrew's Eve -- in many traditions, a night to fortell the future, especially whom you will marry

St. Saturnius of Toulouse's Day (Patron of Toulouse, France)

Square Dance Day -- internet generated, and fun to do, but here's some information about square dancing   

Thanksgiving Day -- Norfolk Island

William Tubman's Birthday -- Liberia (it's longest serving President)

Anniversaries Today:

Erwin Rommel marries Lucie "Lu" Mollin, 1916

Birthdays Today:

Jon Knight, 1968
Don Cheadle, 1964
Andrew McCarthy, 1962
Kim Delaney, 1961
Cathy Moriarty, 1960
Jeff Fahey, 1956
Howie Mandel, 1955
Joel Coen, 1954
Garry Shandling, 1949
Petra Kelly, 1947
Chuck Mangione, 1940
Peter Bergman, 1939
John Mayall, 1933
Jacques Rene Chirac, 1932
Diane Ladd, 1932
Vin Scully, 1927
Madeline L'Engle, 1918
Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., 1908
C.S. Lewis, 1898
Busby Berkeley, 1895
Nellie Tayloe Ross, 1876
Louisa May Alcott, 1832
Wendell Phillips, 1811
Christian Doppler, 1803
Charles Thomson, 1729

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"Tatort"(TV), 1970
"I Want to Hold Your Hand"(Beatles single release), 1963
"Bells Are Ringing"(Musical), 1956
"Kukla, Fran, and Ollie"(TV), 1948
"Gay Divorce"(Musical), 1932

Today in History:

Jews of Augsburg, Germany, are massacred, 1349 (Sometimes, it seems, the more things change...)
King Philip II devalues Spanish currency, 1596 (See above...)
Sir James Jay invents invisible ink, 1775
San Jose, California, is founded as el Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe, 1777
Dessalines & Christophe declare St Domingue (Haiti) independent, 1803
First Italian opera in US, "Barber of Seville" premieres (NYC), 1825
Thomas Edison demonstrates hand-cranked phonograph, 1877
The first motorcycle race ever is held in Surrey, England; the distance was one mile and the winner was Charles Jarrot in a time of 2 minutes, 8 seconds, 1897
The first US patent for inventing the traffic lights system is issued to Ernest Sirrine. 1910
Fire destroys most of the buildings on Santa Catalina Island, California, 1915
Howard Carter opens the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun to the public, 1922
Richard Byrd becomes the first person to fly over the South Pole, 1929
The first surgery (on a human) to correct blue baby syndrome is performed by Alfred Blalock and Vivien Thomas, 1944
The United Nations General Assembly votes to partition Palestine, 1947
Mercury-Atlas 5 Mission – Enos, a chimpanzee, is launched into space, orbits earth twice, and is successfully recovered after splashdown, 1961
Canadian Space Agency launches the satellite Alouette 2, 1965
Nolan Bushnell (co-founder of Atari) releases Pong (the first commercially successful video game) in Andy Capp’s Tavern in Sunnyvale, California, 1972
The United Nations General Assembly passes a resolution stating that Soviet Union forces should withdraw from Afghanistan, 1983
The Czechoslovakian Parliament votes to end Communist rule, 1989
The United Nations Security Council passes two resolutions to restore international peace and security if Iraq did not withdraw its forces from Kuwait and free all foreign hostages by the following January 15, 1990
A 7.4 magnitude earthquake occurs off the northern coast of Martinique, 2007
Pablo Picasso's electrician reveals 271 previously unknown works he claims were gifts from the artist, 2010
NASA announces its space probe MESSENGER has almost certainly found water ice buried beneath the surface of the north pole of Mercury, 2012

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Random Rant, among other things.

Stacy Uncorked

And now a bit of randomness, linking up with Stacy's Random Thoughts at Stacy Uncorked.   

First, i have to get a rant out of my system, and random day is perfect for it.

The other morning, i was awakened at 4:30am by my phone ringing.  Why was my phone on?  Because i have been called in the middle of the night more than once by a child who needed something, usually help with a broken down vehicle, so i leave my phone on.

This was not one of my children.  It was an unknown number, so as is my wont, i  did not answer and waited to see if it was someone who really did need to get in touch with me.  If it is, s/he will leave a message, i presume.  (That has always worked before, that presumption.)

A message was indeed left, although i only heard it from the middle, because the computer leaving the message did not know not to start the spiel until after the “leave a message” message was finished.

It was a cruise line wanting me to call about booking a vacation, of all things.  At 4:30am.

All right, you knotheads who leave such messages, let me get this message out, and i know you won’t listen but it will make me feel better.

Because i have signed up for the Do Not Call list, and you called me anyway, you are breaking Federal law.  Do you really think i will want to do business with any company that routinely breaks Federal law?  The fact is, i don’t trust you and your cruise vacations as far as i can sail a pirogue down the bayou.  If you were a legitimate company, you would not break Federal law.

And 4:30 am?  Who calls to sell vacations at that time except idiots?  You lose, on both counts.

Now i have that out of my system and i feel a bit better.

As for other random around here, Friend Chris is making plans to move out of state.  Bigger Girl is seriously considering changing her college major (i was wondering when that would happen) and might have a friend to move out with next semester.  Little Girl is on a one week call to her duty station.  #2 Son is in Georgia for his two weeks training a new restaurant crew (which he has to show he can do to move into management).  #1 Son may have found a place to move out to very soon.  Daughter-in-Law Becky had a birthday, and we gave her the gifts early so she could shop on Black Friday.  She got a lot of bargains, from what i understand.

My nest could be empty by the end of January, which is weird.  Not that they will stay gone, even the ones who have already moved out visit several times a week.  No way i’m going to get rid of the extra refrigerator yet.

Today is:

Ascension of 'Abdu'l-Baha -- Baha'i

Decorate Your Dog Day -- supposedly to get him/her into the holiday spirit; but please, don't

Feast of the Holy Sovereigns -- Episcopal Diocese of Hawaii (in honor of King Kamehama IV and Queen Emma, the founders of the Anglican Church of Hawaii) 

Flag Day -- Kosovo

Giving Tuesday -- after celebrating Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday, be part of the international giving movement 

Independence Day -- Albania(1912); East Timor(1975); Mauritania(1960)

Independencia de Panama de Espana -- Panama(Independence from Spain Day, 1821)

Make Your Own Head Day -- meaning an art project model or drawing, in any medium; have fun with this one!

National French Toast Day

Red Planet Day -- on the anniversary of the 1964 liftoff of Mariner 4, the first successful mission to Mars

Republic Day -- Chad; Republic of the Congo

Royal Society Day -- one of the world's oldest scientific academies, established this day in 1660

Runic Half Month of Is begins (stasis)

St. Catherine Laboure's Day -- promulgator of the Miraculous Medal

St. Stephen the Younger's Day` (Patron of coin collectors, numismatists, smelters)

Strange Names Day -- in honor of all the celebrity -- and other -- kids with "unique" names; originally sponsored the last Tuesday in November by Marlar in the Morning at 101QFL in Rockford, IL, US

Birthdays Today:

Ryan Kwanten, 1976
Anna Nicole Smith, 1967
Jon Stewart, 1962
Judd Nelson, 1959
S. Epatha Merkerson, 1952
Ed Harris, 1950
Alexander Godunov, 1949
Paul Shaffer, 1949
Joe Dante, 1946
Randy Newman, 1943
Berry Gordy, Jr., 1929
Claude Lévi-Strauss, 1908
Charles H. Alston, 1907
Brooks Atkinson, 1894
William Blake, 1757
Jean Baptiste Lully, 1632
John Bunyan, 1628

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"Look Homeward, Angel"(Play), 1957
"The Grand Ole Opry"(Radio), 1925
Skywriting(as an advertising medium), 1922

Today in History:

Skanderbeg and his forces liberate Kruja in Middle Albania and raise the Albanian flag, 1443
Ferdinand Magellan and his men become the first Europeans to sail from the Atlantic into the Pacific Ocean, 1520
The Times in London is for the first time printed by automatic, steam powered presses built by the German inventors Friedrich Koenig and Andreas Friedrich Bauer, signaling the beginning of the availability of newspapers to a mass audience, 1814
Ka Lahui: Hawaiian Independence Day - The Kingdom of Hawaii is officially recognized by the United Kingdom and France as an independent nation, 1843
Women vote in a national election for the first time in the New Zealand general election, 1893
US-born Lady Astor becomes the first female member of British Parliament, 1919
Capt Cyril Turner of the RAF gives 1st skywriting exhibition in NYC; Turner spelled out "Hello USA. Call Vanderbilt 7200." 47,000 called, 1922
"Hopalong Cassidy" premieres on TV, 1948
The first Polaroid Camera is sold, 1948
Chad, the Republic of the Congo, and Gabon become autonomous republics within the French Community, 1958
The first pulsar star is discovered by Jocelyn Bell Burnell and Antony Hewish, 1968
Norway votes against joining the European Union, 1994
Wikileaks releases 250,000 classified documents and sensitive national security information sent by U.S. embassies, 2010
"Hamilton" sets a new record for the most money earned in a week on Broadway - $3.3 million, 2016