Showing posts from August, 2015

Not-so-favorite Animals

We woke yesterday to find that our lawn looked like it had been trampled by a herd of gnus. Actually, the damage was done by a skunk (or skunks, since there's lots of territory covered). They put their noses into the ground and turn in a circle, tearing up the sod so they can get at bugs. A friend who stopped by advised trapping them and moving them elsewhere, but trapping skunks is a dangerous enterprise. I think we'll just hope they move on.

Big Marketing, the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

How long since you bought any Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner? Me neither! (Although I looked and it's still available.) Marketing is huge in our world, and sometimes it flops, either because the product is useless (as I'm guessing the automatic shower cleaner is) or the campaign is badly done. Pringles' latest tag line is "You Don't Just Eat Them." Really? Should I make little castles out of them first and THEN eat them? Does that line in any way make me want to run out and buy some Pringles? Sometimes I look at new products and think, "Who is going to buy that?"As someone dear to me says, there are people who must have them, possibly because they're new, possibly because they seem like fun. The Rotato, the Egg-tastic, the Purse Pouch, Flex-Steel, Card-lock, Tummy-tuck, Pocket Hose, Chillow...I could go on, but you get the idea. They sound good, and many of us don't stop to think whether we really want another gadget we use

List Your Pets

Here's a challenge: List all your childhood cats/dogs/whatevers in order. Now I can't do ALL our cats, because we lived on a farm and there were cats everywhere, but the first cat I recall was Chocolate Bar, an adopted barn cat who let me carry him around like a baby. He was followed by Ching-a-ling, a temperamental Siamese who had no intention of letting anyone carry him anywhere. Ever. (His opinion was overcome for the picture at left.) Our longtime collie dog was Laddie (also in the photo), who was useful for herding cows and as lovable as a dog can get. When I was really young there was a workhorse, Rowdy. Later there were two ponies for the two of us to ride, Molly & Rusty, and an assortment of horses from Mackinac Island we boarded over the winter, notably Danny, who had his own mind about where you would go on a trail ride, and Dolly,  who became a permanent resident at some point. (Photo below) I never got close to the chickens, pigs and cows on the farm. I

Meet the Granddog

This is Bert, our new Basset Grand-dog. He's 8 weeks old, and pretty much all he does is sleep. When he is awake, he likes Mommy G best (because she spoils him) and Grandpa J second best (because he'll sit and hold him for hours). I apparently fall into the "I'm sleeping under your chair so be careful not to rock" category. He did roll off J's lap once and onto the couch. Didn't make a lot of difference to Bert.

Readers, E-readers, and Listeners

An author in an online group I visit did an informal survey to discover reading habits, and it was interesting to me. I don't recall specific numbers, but here's the gist of it. Most people who read still read print books. The percentage was in the 90s. Many people read e-books in addition to print. I think that was 67% of her responders, and that's where I fall too. Some listen to audiobooks as well. That was twenty-something percent. I haven't joined that crowd yet, mostly because I'm a fast reader and I don't like waiting for someone to read to me. The author's respondents were about the same demographic as my readers: mostly women, mostly over 40, mostly lovers of  the mystery genre. I haven't done any research, but I'd agree with those results just from talking to many, many readers over the last few years. We like print books, but some of us find them heavy or hard to manage as our hands get arthritic. It's sometimes hard to take t