Two by Two

Today was a day of weird almost-twin sightings. I encountered the first pair early this morning. Sitting in the drive-through lane after ordering a latte at the Starbucks on Magnolia in Tallahassee I saw two men, corporate types, both wearing dark plaid suit jackets. The plaids were subdued, but as I observed the men walking side by side across the parking lot, the almost matching patterns caught my eye. I wondered if they’d called each other before dressing, so similar was their garb.

Then driving home from Tallahassee to Doright Manor I noted two dark haired young men, probably in their late teens or early twenties, sitting just off the side of the road. They appeared to be fishing, but with sticks for poles. And neither was wearing a shirt. Normally that wouldn’t be noteworthy, but it was only about 40°F outside. Brrrr. This time I wondered if they’d called each other to find out what they WEREN’T wearing.

(These are definitely not the shirtless guys I saw.)

Further down the road, between Midway and Quincy, I had to slow down to avoid hitting a pair of men crossing the road while wearing identical vests. Okay, so the vests were bright orange, and the men were part of a road crew. I’m pretty sure they just knew what the other one was wearing to work this morning. No phone call necessary.

Weird stuff, am I right? Wish I’d seen these guys. That would’ve been epic.

Peace, people.

Say What?

I bought a new bra today at a shop in our local mall. As I paid for it, the sales clerk asked me if I wanted it in a bag. Really? It wasn’t as if I was carrying any bags from other stores. I only had my purse. Was I supposed to cram my bra inside my handbag?

Maybe I should’ve said “no bag necessary,” and just strolled around Governor’s Square Mall carrying my new bra. I could’ve draped it around my neck and used it as a scarf, I suppose. Or maybe I could’ve worn it as a belt. How about as a hat? I could call it a branet–like a bonnet, only with cups and straps.

Hey, here’s a purse made out of a bra!

Instead I told her that I did indeed need a bag for my purchase. I guess I’m no trendsetter.

This all made me think of a specific Seinfeld episode:

https://youtu.be/kw7PjickeFc

Peace, people!

More on Louise Penny’s Visit to Tallahassee

Yesterday’s post about my dashed hopes of getting to meet visiting author Louise Penny went on longer than I’d planned, but there were some fun details surrounding her time in Tallahassee that I thought were worth a mention.

Ms. Penny, author of the acclaimed Inspector Gamache series, chose to launch her newest book to a Tallahassee audience when she could’ve gone to any number of much more populous cities to do so. I’d wondered why and before she spoke to a standing room only crowd at Faith Presbyterian on Tuesday night the reason was revealed via the introduction.

It seems a group of women from the church had read and discussed a number of her books and decided to write Ms. Penny a letter telling her what devoted fans they were and offering to take her to dinner. In Canada. That’s where the author lives. They sent the letter off never expecting to hear back, but were elated when she responded telling them she’d love to meet them. The book club members made the pilgrimage to Canada and treated Ms. Penny to lunch where friendships were formed.

Earlier this year one of the group’s members contacted Midtown Reader, a wonderful locally owned bookstore in Tallahassee, asking the owner if she’d read any of Ms. Penny’s books. Indeed, the owner was a big fan herself and had already planned to ask the author to visit here. Connections were made, one thing led to another, and Ms. Penny decided to launch the book from our town.

Again, I cannot stress enough how beautifully written her books are. Yes, they’re murder mysteries, but they’ll renew your hopes for humanity. You’ll also want to dwell in the fictional town of Three Pines. I’m planning to build a small house there myself, and maybe open a little shop down the street from the bistro. I’ll sell artsy t-shirts with witty quotes and hats adorned tastefully with antlers. Maybe.

Peace, people.

How I Spent Black Friday

While thousands of my fellow Americans were engaged in combat with each other, vying for a bargain price on an 85-inch big screen TV or shoving to the front of a long line of like minded people in order to have the best shot at this year’s most asked for toy, I was tucked cozily beneath two layers of blankets on a massage table, enjoying an oh, so soothing facial.

I know it wasn’t a competition, but I’m pretty sure I won the day.

Pumpkin Jumpsuit vs. Risqué Shirtwaist: There are no Winners

Yesterday I shared my tale of shopping angst. I’ve been in search of a cocktail or after 5 dress for an upcoming soirée, and so far I have found nothing. The dresses that fit my 5’8″, size 12, slightly past middle-aged frame, are few and far between. And ugly. I might be nearing the age of 62, but I refuse to dress like my obituary is going into tomorrow’s newspaper.

At one point yesterday I decided to think outside the box in my pursuit of the elusive not-so-matronly dress, so I went to a local store in Tallahassee that always has a mix of new and vintage clothing displayed in their windows. It’s a nice shop, with friendly staff, and a variety of casual and dressier items in stock.

After walking around the store with me and asking about my style and color preferences one of the sales ladies opened a dressing room and began bringing different pieces for me to try on. I was seriously stoked to see just what she might find!

The first outfit was a light green floral jumpsuit. It didn’t scream “COCKTAILS” at me, but I was keeping an open mind. This isn’t it, but it was similar:

On me, the pants ended around mid-calf and the waist hit about two inches north of where my actual waist resides. And the floral pattern just made me look like I needed a good weeding.

Next she brought me another jumpsuit. I wish with all my heart that I’d had the presence of mind to take a photo of me wearing it. First off, it was orange. Not a pretty orange, but a washed out, 70’s shag carpet orange. In fact, I’d swear Studly and I lived in a rental that had the exact same color carpet during our poverty period.

The jumpsuit was crafted from chenille, so I looked like a pumpkin, freshly picked. And again, the waist was too high and the legs too short. Stifling a bout of giggles, I politely asked the sales lady to refrain from bringing any more jumpsuits to the dressing room.

So she brought me an adorable dress. It was simple and sweet on the hanger, but on me? Fugedaboutit. My bosom could not be contained by this little slip of a dress. Indeed, parts of me better left hidden made mad attempts to escape if I even dared to breathe in the gown. It was a Jekyll and Hyde affair, to be sure. All meek and mild on display, while determined to ruin my reputation whilst being worn. Be very glad that I didn’t take photos of this dress. That’s not it below, but you get the picture, right!

My little experiment in thinking outside the box was unproductive; however, I left the store with a badly damaged self-image, and that’s what really counts.

Peace, people.

Chef’s Choice

After Studly Doright’s round of golf yesterday and my round of garage sale foraging we both returned home to Doright Manor and took well-deserved naps. Actually, I’m not sure I’d done anything to merit such a good nap, but I enjoyed one anyway.

Studly awakened before me and went out to do some work in his shop. Apparently I had been snoring too loudly for him to continue sleeping. I am woman, hear me roar!

After he came back into the house Studly took a shower and then harassed me until I woke up. He wanted to go into Tallahassee for Italian food, so I wiped the drool off of my chin, the sleep out of my eyes, and tried to make myself presentable for dinner out.

We went to Riccardo’s for dinner. I’d never been before, but Studly and his workmates eat there fairly often. The place was packed on a Saturday night, but we got a table and ordered fairly quickly. I ordered a caprese salad and a glass of wine, but Studly ordered a pepperoni pizza with pineapples and onion.

After the waiter left to turn in our orders Studly told me about a time he’d been in Orlando on business, and he stopped in at a small pizzeria on his way back to his hotel after work.

He said, “I ordered the same thing I did tonight: pepperoni with onions and pineapple. The waiter frowned and said he didn’t know if they even had pineapple, but he’d check. After a few minutes the waiter came back to my table and said, ‘Sir, I’m sorry. We do have pineapple, but the chef said that’s a horrible combination and he refuses to make it.'”

I was kind of shocked. Wouldn’t one go with the theory that the customer is always right? Shouldn’t the chef have made the pizza as requested?

Now, I know that pineapple on pizza is controversial. I’m a fan, but apparently not everyone is. What say you? Yay or nay on the pineapple? This is a matter of great importance.

Snapshots #213 and #215

Those who pay attention to such things will note that the numbers in my title are not consecutive. There’s a good reason for that. I shared photo #213, titled, Studly Doright Will Just See an Ugly Old Chair, several days ago.

I bought the vanity chair for $5 at a garage sale, and after asking my crafts-minded sister-in-law, Lyn, for advice I’ve begun the process of making it prettier. The first step was to buy a new cushion which was way easier than I’d imagined since the existing cushion was a fairly standard size.

Here’s snapshot #215, which I’m calling Old Chair with New Cushion:

Isn’t it already prettier? I found this cheerful cushion at World Market for half of its original price. So far, I have $19.00 invested in my chair. Now I need to clean it and as Lyn suggested, apply Tung oil to the rattan.

As blog posts go, this is hardly earth-shattering, but the project is keeping me out of trouble. For now, at least. Oh, and Studly actually likes the chair and pronounced that I’d found a gem! Will wonders never cease?

Peace, people!

What Would You Remember?

This morning while Studly played for the final day in his club’s golf tournament I decided to take myself to brunch at the Canopy Road Cafe on Apalachee Parkway in Tallahassee. It’s a bit of a drive from Doright Manor to this cafe, so I had plenty of time to listen to an entire episode of NPR’s RadioLab on Sirius/XM.

The segment that gave me pause was one about a music conductor who suffered an illness that resulted in him having the worst case of amnesia ever recorded. He literally could not remember what happened from one minute to the next. He attempted to keep a journal at the urging of his nurses, but the entries went something like It’s 8:02 and I am fully awake. This was followed by, It is now 8:03, and I’m truly awake. Then, It is 8:04 and I am awake!This pattern continued until something else occurred in his routine.

Since I was driving I didn’t write down his name, but I do remember that of his wife, Claudia. I remember because she was one of only two touchstones in his life. He might not always remember her name, but he lit up when he saw her and he wanted only to be near her, to kiss her, and to enjoy her hugs.

He also remembered how to read music and could sing lyrics to familiar songs. Claudia brought his choir members to the facility in which he lived, and her husband was able to conduct their performance as if nothing had ever changed.

All I could think of as I ate my omelet this morning was what would I remember if inflicted with a similar fate. Would it be Studly Doright’s face? Those of my children? Would it be my favorite books or movies? What would survive an almost complete memory loss?

There’s no way of knowing, of course, and I hope I never have to deal with Alzheimer’s or dementia, or any other memory stealing event. Still, maybe I need to begin reinforcing pleasant memories. Note to self: Give Studly a big hug and kiss when he returns from golf today.

What do you think you’d remember? Are there things you wouldn’t mind not being able to recall? That’s dangerous territory.

Peace, people.

‘Til the Cows Come Home

One cow came home with me on Wednesday night, well, a picture of a cow anyway. One of the Meetup groups I’m a part of enjoyed an evening at Painting with a Twist in Tallahassee where we painted happy cows.

Here’s what Clarice (Yes, I named my cow) looked like after I’d worked on the background. You will perhaps note that I’m not all that accomplished at the fine art of painting.

But I did progress during the evening:

Clarice appears to have let her bangs grow out. Why on earth does my cow have bangs?

I know she didn’t look all that happy in the photo above, but I kept plugging and voila! Isn’t she something? You can answer that any way you choose.

I was the least capable of the four of us who were part of the Meetup group:

We did have a great time, though, and painting is s great way to get to know people. For instance, they all now know that I have a rich vocabulary of swear words. &@$%# cow.

Peace, people!

Farm to Table

Yesterday I felt like getting out of the house. Having been sick since May 2, I’d only made short trips for necessities, including two visits to convenient care medical facilities. I’m still not 100%, but if I ever want to get stronger I have to venture forth.

A Tallahassee neighborhood was having its community garage sale, so I drove to the east side of town and enjoyed the beautiful Florida weather while buying only a couple of items. Most of the merchandise on sale was baby related, and I have no need for strollers or play pens. Thank goodness.

I still had money in my pocket when I left the neighborhood, so I took myself to lunch at Backwoods Crossing, a farm to table restaurant. I’d driven past the place a couple of times before, but never at a meal time.

The interior of the restaurant is pleasant.

I was there early, so I had my pick of tables. The menu had lots of appetizing choices. Unfortunately, I’m limited in what I can eat right now. I settled on a grilled chicken breast with an apple glaze. It was tasty. I’d have loved to have the side of mashed sweet potatoes, but was afraid they’d have too much fiber for my delicate system. Never thought this hot salsa guzzling girl would have to settle for the bland side of things. Hopefully, this, too shall pass. No pun intended.

After my lunch I strolled into their outdoor seating area and garden. Much of the food they serve comes straight from this beautiful garden.

Items they don’t grow or raise directly on property are purchased from local farms. It’s a sweet setup.

I look forward to returning when my digestive issues are straightened out. Fingers crossed that happens soon! As for Studly Doright, he’s recovering from back surgery like a champ. He drove over and had lunch with his golf buddies today. It’ll be another three months before he can take the game up again, but he enjoyed swapping tales with his friends. Life is slowly getting back to normal.

Peace, people.