Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Wednesday Wa Pics - More fun from Britain

In Britain, sandwiches, like teenagers, are not allowed a nightlife. 

 Yes, an appointment is always required at the Hair Bar, where Happy Hour includes our popular Mullet Mojito.

Weird armless lady-man statue in Falmouth. There is a story there, I'm sure, but probably not as interesting as the one explaining why the lady (man?) with the dog is wearing that hat (hair?).

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Drought brings opportunity for neighborly one-upsmanship

There was a time when my laziness about watering my lawn was an embarrassment, but now I, like my lawn, am golden.

Suddenly lawns with unsightly yellow patches are fashionable, a scruffy badge of good citizenship! In fact, our neighborhood's previous, unspoken competition over who could grow the greenest, lushest lawn has given way to its opposite.

This plays right into one of my key strengths—neglect. I am mildly competitive, but only as is  measurable in the negative. I have no interest in doing the most. But I can really go the distance when it comes to the least. Dedication, I think, is what they call it. Resolve.

Walk down my street and you are greeted by lawns in varying states of gasp. Some are a uniform yellow, some a pale drought-green with bare patches and growing brown craters. Civic-mindedness at work, yes, as we are all trying to conserve our limited water. But underneath it all is the unmistakeable whiff of competition.

Who can use LESS water than whom? Who can NOT grow the most beautiful lawn? These days one looks upon a pristine green lawn with the judgmental contempt of a Quaker at Hooters.

There is only one thick, dark, lush lawn in my entire neighborhood, guarded by a corgi who is undoubtedly working, in his own way, on yellowing it up. The lawn is new sod, placed already-grown in front of its newly-built house. It looks like it could suck on its own reserves for a year.

I love this lawn. In this drought, it makes me look like a saint.

It is rare in this life that a failing, like being lazy, can pass as civic altruism, but I am capitalizing big. The city says it is O.K. to water your lawn every other day. Blasphemy! I water mine twice a month, and I let it grow long too, so the sun doesn't bake out the moisture.

Most of my neighbors have close-cropped lawns. They probably think I am lazy to let mine grow so unkempt. But I am thinking of putting up a lawn sign—"I'm saving water. Ask me how."

Of course, if anyone rings the doorbell to ask, I will not hear it, as I will be in the back bedroom with my feet up, binge-watching "House of Cards."

If this drought holds, I may make it back through all four old "Downton Abbeys" too.

 My lawn. I win!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wednesday Wa Pics - more views from England

 These were all on the same street. I didn't want to pry, but I have to think they are related.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Oh, you've gotten so big

It's a shame we don't treat adults the same way we do children. We see a friend's kid for the first time in years and we squeal, "Oh, you've gotten so big," but really all of us are changing every day. We are just not getting taller.

Seeing a friend after an absence, we should squeal, "Oh, you've gotten so wise" or "Oh, you've gotten so loving" or, conversely, "Oh, you've gotten so far from where you really need to be."

Spout your first impression, I say. 

It's too bad we don't throw each other in the air like we do babies. Just to elicit joy. Imagine tossing your best friend in the air, crying "Woooo!" as your friend giggles uncontrollably. "Who's a good friend?" you might call out as you send him skyward. "Who's a good friend?"

I can totally picture it. You would place him back on his feet, where he would sway a little unsteadily, pulse pumping, buoyed by your connection but also a little afraid of you from then on.

I understand why this behavior stops. It's gravity. Babies are a lot lighter than us. But why can we not emotionally, if not physically, throw the people we love into the air? I will tell you why. Because we all have bad backs, emotionally. Men, especially.

Every man has done the thing where you go to bid your friend goodbye, and just as you stick out your hand he opens his arms to hug you, and so you look like an overly formal, unaffectionate drip. At least I have heard this happens, and wow, that's got to be embarrassing.

If only your friend could throw you in the air to make amends. "Who's an overly formal silly-willy? Who?"

"Oh, you've gotten so big" is not a sentence any adult ever really wants to hear. Kids either, though. I guarantee you, every kid you say that to is thinking to himself, "After five years you were expecting smaller, somehow?"

I recall as a child being introduced to lots of adults who told me I had gotten so big. Even then I knew it was meant to make me feel grown up, so I never threw out the obvious zinger, "You too!"

When you are a kid, you have to worry about adults' feelings a lot. It's a burden, but it's necessary. Without warning, those giants might throw you in the freakin' air.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Wednesday Wa Pics - As seen in the United Kingdom

 I figured, maybe, upside-down means they help you grow hair? I never found out.

 This was for sale near the Tower of London, where historical toiletry was invented.

In my sleep I could think of half a dozen better things to name this.