Archive for September, 2009

Cold or Flu?

Posted in health on September 30, 2009 by Nada

I have a cold or the flu. I don’t know which, and I don’t know how you differentiate the two. I think it all started with the Oktoberfest at Schroeder’s German Restaurant in San Francisco. Normally, I don’t drink, but the German polka band wore me down until I ordered a cold mug of Spaten, along with the sausage platter for two.
polka_band
bootdrinkerThings got out of hand with the yelling after that, at first, not by us, but by these yuppies several tables over, drinking from ceramic boots. My cousin and I grew up on the same farm. No one can out yell us, and any attempt is viewed as a challenge. Every time the boot drinkers hollered, we hollered back. The table behind us announced we were the winners. So, we ate our strudel and left, but not before we told the table behind us the boot drinkers looked like Shetland ponies with feedbags on their faces.

bubblyAnd here is what I think did me in. The next day my cousin, my husband, and I went to Napa for some wine tasting at the Domaine Chandon winery. The Spaten and the bubbly broke me. Or maybe just my sinuses. Would I do it again? I’m not sure at this point. It’s like asking, “Did I learn a lesson?” Is the current pain worth the past fun? Did it even cause it? Ask me in a few days when I’m not sneezing and honking my nose every 3 seconds.

flu_kitHere is my flu kit, and I stand by it even though it doesn’t seem to be working so well. About two hours ago, I found some Claritin on my husband’s desk. That stuff is worthless. At least when I eat my Icebreakers SOUR, I can feel something happening, like tartaric acid wrenching a knot in the flu bug. Or is that my throat?

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Walk Bikes

Posted in general weirdness on September 29, 2009 by Nada

Sunday, I went out to Angel Island to bike ride the perimeter. It’s a nice ride with no cars, but plenty of buzzards, lurking in this one dead tree. We stopped to eat lunch beside them and watch a while. A red tailed hawk swooped by and sat on the furthest branch of the same tree, which could be called Deadly Bird Dead Tree, DBDT for short.

The picnic was good although I forgot to cut my sandwich in half and left all the napkins on the kitchen counter. After lunch, we forged on, determined to make the 12:15 exit ferry. There’s a steep downhill on perimeter road with a warning sign that says, “Walk Bikes.” It was there I had my little mishap. I saw the rock, about half the size of my fist, but since I was NOT walking my bike, and traveling at light speed, the rock was impossible to miss. I squiggled the front wheel and thought for a brief second I had escaped calamity, when I heard the pong clang of breaking spokes. The rock took out 2 of my back spokes, and when I applied the brakes, the right brake seized.

I was stuck on perimeter road with a busted bike, a frozen back wheel and no way to walk the thing back to the ferry. The Big Guy and my cousin pulled up beside me. At the top of the hill, the roof of the tourist tram appeared. I could hear the tram’s recording, recklessly throwing words into the wind. I flagged the tram down and begged the driver to haul my busted bike and me back to the dock. Thankfully, my bike was a folder, so I folded it up. The tram bobbed like a centipede down the hill to a level spot, and my husband passed the folded bike to the driver. I sat down in the only available seat and made myself small.
alcatraz
And so, this is a view of Alcatraz on the way back. When we got back to the mainland, I left my bike unlocked in front of the Ferry Building for an hour but no one stole it. What’s wrong with people? I’m not going to repair the little folder anymore. I just repaired her 6 months ago. Time to scrap her. I’ve ridden the heck out of the little folder. May she rest in peace.

The Family Emu

Posted in animal on September 28, 2009 by Nada

Back in the day, our farm adjoined my grandparents, but my parents got into debt and sold our farm. My grandparents died, and my uncle and aunt inherited their place.
emu
Which brings us to this emu. One of the neighbors on an adjoining farm bought some emus. They lived in the only Victorian House around those parts and after they moved in, they painted the house purple. The rumor was they were from California. Emus and purple houses will start those kinds of rumors in the South. Then, like a lot of transplants, they couldn’t take the area and moved out, leaving an emu behind. The emu moved one farm over to my uncle and aunt’s place. He stays with the cows now, eating who knows what. No one can catch him.

The Badness

Posted in animal on September 28, 2009 by Nada

My cousin has been here, visiting. She took a picture of the staring seagull, but she was sitting to the left of me on the patio and captured the Tiger Woods billboard in the background, “Just Do It.” HA!bad_gull

Wilding by the Baby

Posted in animal on September 28, 2009 by Nada

See Gull

Posted in animal on September 25, 2009 by Nada

This picture was taken on the patio atop the Macy’s building at San Francisco’s Cheesecake Factory. The seagull is real, behind Plexiglas, and staring at people eating lunch. The people think he’s funny, but I know better. He goes crazy every once in a while and flies over the Plexiglas and attacks the beautiful women’s long hair. Sometimes I think I should warn them, but then he behaves himself, and I appear like a kook, someone akin to Chicken Little, rather than crying, “The sky is falling,” I’m yelling, “That seagull will bite your hair.”see_gull

Police Helicopter

Posted in Oakland, political, whatevah on September 24, 2009 by Nada

Supposedly, according to city council person Jane Brunner, Oakland’s police helicopter has been grounded due to lack of funds. I found this wandering around the internet. It’s Oakland’s helicopter maintenance contract for $730,000 for two years, waiving competitive bidding. WTF?

Brunner was one of the council people responsible for the new parking regulations. The city council voted in expensive parking meter changes and regulations, and then, rather than hear any flak from the public, they went on break. The new regulations prohibit people from shopping in Oakland. That’s the way to cure the city’s ills. She says she was trying to raise revenue to save the city. Instead, she has caused a revolt. People are talking about recalling Brunner.

Needless to say, the police helicopter has not been around. I noticed in a way you notice something is missing but can’t quite place it. I finally decided the night train had turned up the volume on its whistle, but the truth is the helicopter, which was whopping over my house every other Saturday night, is sitting on a tarmac somewhere gathering dust.

Do I miss it? No. Was it helping? Haven’t a clue. Ask any long time Oakland resident and he/she will tell you the whirlybird was annoying as hell. It was so bad one night I called Oakland PD and asked them to contact the helicopter pilot and request he take his spotlight away from my bedroom. The fleeing felon was not in there, and he was scaring the animals.

The dispatcher responded with, “How do you know it’s us?”

“I can see you out my window,” I said.

“I have no way to contact him,” she said, and yet he whopped off in the next few minutes as if he got an urgent call on his bat phone from another part of the city.