Posted tagged ‘snowmen’

“Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it.

March 19, 2017

When I woke up around nine, the snow was just starting. Because of the wind, the fluffies were coming from different directions, from the north and south. Then the snow suddenly disappeared, but it’s back now, small flakes tossed by the wind. I doubt it will last long enough to accumulate.

I didn’t go out yesterday. I had no motivation. Today, though, I have a list of weird items. I need a bulb for my bathroom nightlight, an extension cord, and a plastic container for my snowmen. I’m putting them away for the season. I think they jinxed me.

I remember my first pair of nylon stockings. In those days I had to wear a garter belt. The back snaps were always the hardest to attach. I remember sometimes one would swing back and whack my leg. Pantyhose is one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century.

I never get gussied up anymore. I don’t go anywhere demanding gussy. The closest I get to dress up is coordinating the color of my pants with a clean shirt. That works no matter the season: long sleeves in winter, short sleeves in summer; corduroy in winter, cotton in summer; shoes and socks in winter, sandals in summer. I don’t even own a pair of panty hose. I do have three dresses: two flowered dresses for summer, one green dress for winter.

I don’t wear my winter jacket much. My sweatshirts are usually enough, but I do have the warmest sweater, blue with snowflakes, the sort which used to be called après skiing, for single digit temperatures. I have several pairs of mittens, but I don’t remember the last time I wore them. I have earmuffs and knit caps. My mother would be pleased.

I love Mad Magazine. I used to buy it every month. I remember the Alfred E. Newman for president drive. Mad taught me about satire and parodies and thinking for myself. I didn’t understand it all because I was young, but as I got older, I learned what it all meant. Spy versus Spy was a favorite of mine. Sometimes the white spy won and other times the black spy won. I believe that Mad Magazine helped form my politics and those of my generation. “What, me worry?”

“The Harvard Law states: Under controlled conditions of light, temperature, humidity, and nutrition, the organism will do as it damn well pleases.”

July 22, 2016

Last night I went to bed early, around 10:30, but couldn’t fall asleep so I decided to check out Netflix as my iPad is beside my bed. That was a huge mistake. I started watching Stranger Things and was hooked. It was close to 4 o’clock before I put down my iPad and went to sleep. Episodes remain, and I’m thinking I’ll watch them this afternoon. I won’t do that late night binging again. Okay, I admit I probably will.

As of late yesterday afternoon, the house was closed again, and the air conditioner became a necessity. All of a sudden it was very humid, and the breeze did nothing to cool the day. Poor Gracie was panting, a sure sign the house was too warm. Today is also hot and somewhat humid. Boston is officially in the middle of a heat wave. We are not though heat wave or no heat wave it is still a really hot day.

I don’t remember when the weather started to bother me enough I complained. When I was a kid, the weather never mattered. Summer was for being outside as long as I could be. I always dreaded my mother yelling out the back door for us to come inside the house. Snow was always fun. It was for sledding, making snowmen and building forts. Sometimes snow even gave us a free day from school. Where I lived in Ghana was the hottest part of the country. It was savannah grassland with few trees. I could look across the fields to the horizon. Nothing stood in the way. I was hot in the 100 plus degree heat, but I found ways to be cool. At night I’d take my cold shower and not dry off. The air cooled and dried me and I easily fell asleep. After every snow storm, I used to shovel my walk and driveway. Now I pay someone and wait patiently inside until he comes. My house has central air conditioning. I used to have a fan I carted from den to bedroom at night, and I was cooled enough to sleep. Maybe this intolerance is because I am getting older or maybe it is because I no longer want to abide too hot or too cold. I aim for comfortable.

Tomorrow is our first deck movie night. I have several from which my friends can choose including Charade, The original Thomas Crown Affair, Cabaret,  the Equalizer, Three Days of the Condor and Beginning of the End, our awful science fiction B movie for the summer, a movie where giant grasshoppers wreak devastation wherever they go. I’m serving grilled sausages and sauteed peppers and onions and fresh bread for sandwiches. I’m making a couple of appetizers and a new drink, a blue drink. I have my shopping list ready.

Gracie is sleeping and is snoring. I envy her the nap, not the snoring.

“December’s wintery breath is already clouding the pond, frosting the pane, obscuring summer’s memory…”

February 12, 2015

Earlier this morning I rolled over and looked out the window. I swear I saw the sun. Later, when I woke up, it was a gray day. It was yesterday and the day before and the day before that. I could keep going but you get the idea. That sun must have been a dream, a wanting and most of all a hoping.

More snow is in the forecast, light snow starting later today. I am passed screaming. I can only sigh. The temperature is going to plummet. It will be 12˚ tonight and 9˚tomorrow night. The 20’s during the day will seem downright tropical. Where did I put that Hawaiian shirt? I’m thinking mai tai, many mai tais, all with umbrellas.

In Northern Ghana this is the harmattan, the season when a cold-dry dusty wind blows from the desert. It is also the hottest time of the year. In Bolga, where I lived, every day this time of year was over 100˚. The cold shower was a blessing, a relief from the heat. I didn’t have a fan, never even thought of buying one. The heat was something to abide just as the snow is. The nights during the harmattan brought relief from the relentless heat of the days. The temperatures dropped as low as the 70’s. I was cold and even had a wool blanket on my bed. The early mornings were brisk, even chilly. They were a delight.

In the midst of the harmattan I thought of home and winter. I thought of snow but it was an idealized version conjured by my imagination. The snow was pristine, perfectly white. Snowmen with carrot noses, buttons and top hats sat on front lawns. Kids sledded down hills. Snowball fights were fun. Cars made a crunching sound from the snow as they drove down the street. We all looked healthy with red cheeks.

It is easy to get discontent with extremes so we have to remind ourselves that seasons change. The heat ends when the rains come. Spring always follows winter.

“My grandma always said that God made libraries so that people didn’t have any excuse to be stupid.”

January 6, 2015

I’m still waiting for the celebration. Bring on the balloons, the cake and the conical hats. I did it. I took down almost all of Christmas yesterday. Only the trees are left for tonight’s lightning, for the celebration of the Epiphany.

I carried empty boxes up the stairs and filled boxes back down the stairs to the cellar. Some boxes were so heavy I couldn’t carry them so I slid them down the steps one step at a time. The block Christmas tree was the scariest to carry downstairs. Given my history, I was afraid of falling and scattering all those blocks, but I didn’t. It is safely secured until next year. The special ornaments went into individual small boxes then into the ornament box. The snowmen are still around the house and will stay a while longer. With the tree lights, the house still has a bit of the festivities about it. Wednesday will be a dark day. I miss Christmas.

I am not good with numbers, never have been. I counted on my fingers until at least college. If I hadn’t worn shoes, my toes would have extended my math ability. Words are my strength. When I first learned to read, I read everything I could at the Dick and Jane stage. I got to know their animals and their little sister. The more I read, the better I read so Dick and Jane were left in the dust. I read real books, not the ones filled with pictures. The books in school were boring so I went to the town library. That began my love affair with libraries. The college library was for studying and research though I often ran into friends who convinced me it was time to grab a drink or two after all that academic effort. My town in Ghana, Bolgatanga, had a wonderful library. It was designed by award-winning American architect J. Max Bond Jr. The design of the library always made the inside feel much cooler than outside. I was a frequent visitor.

I still go to the my local library and am on the board. I used to buy books all the time, but now I borrow most of them unless I just can’t wait to read the newest book from a favorite author.

I’m tired today, and I have PT which in this case,. after yesterday, might just mean physically tired.

“It snowed last year too: I made a snowman and my brother knocked it down and I knocked my brother down and then we had tea”

December 20, 2012

The rain has finally disappeared. The day is bright with sun. A small breeze is swaying the brown leaves left on the oak tree hanging over the deck. The birds have been constantly in and out at the feeders. I noticed a flicker at an empty suet feeder and went out right away to fill it. It is a new feeder with a long bottom so the big birds like the flicker have a place to rest their tails. The woodpeckers too seem to favor that suet feeder over the other. I still need to go out later and fill the seed feeders.

My sister is in the middle of a real winter in Colorado. Snow is on the ground and last night was going to be around 1 or 2˚. She said the Christmas lights are pretty shining through the snow. I figure if you’re stuck with that sort of weather looking for the pretty makes even the cold easier to endure.

I don’t remember when cold started to bother me. When I was little, I never noticed how cold it was. I played in the snow all day. My clothes got soaked and my lips sometimes turned blue, but I’d stay outside until my mother dragged me in, not literally but it was by that yell from the back door every kid knows. I never went right into the house but rather went down the outside steps to the cellar where I’d strip off my wet clothes and hang them on the clothesline. I’d run upstairs then run up the next set of stairs to my bedroom where I’d put on my warmest pajamas and my slippers. I remember my face, my hands and my feet were red with cold.

We always made a snowman on the front lawn. We’d ask my mother for an old hat, a carrot and buttons then we’ d look for arms. I don’t know why but snowmen always have spindly arms. They also all seem to have three buttons down the middle. Their hats differ, but their faces tend to look alike with two eyes, a carrot nose and a smile. Our snowman usually lasted a long time, but I can still remember him melting away on the warmer days. He’d get smaller and smaller until finally he’d fall apart and on the ground would be three snow balls, one with spindly arms.