Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween on Harper St.

Happy Halloween from our house to yours...(or is that another season I'm thinking of?)

Earthquake 5.6

So, last night I'd just gone to bed with a good book when the bed started shaking, the house rattling and what sounded like someone dragging a tin can body through our patio. It was of course "our little earthquake" which "struck" at 8:04 PM. It shook for 30 seconds and I was scared. I mean, our house didn't fall down and I didn't die but the thing is, when an earthquake starts, who really knows where it's going?

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Ironing at the office

The last time I wore a dress was in 1972 when I worked for the welfare department in Barstow California. I hadn't done my laundry in a while and found the dress tucked away and slipped it on to make the 60 mile drive to work. Many of us lived in far-flung desert "ranches" with no electricity. We'd bring our un-ironed clothes in and iron at a board set up in the kitchen of our office in-between seeing clients. Too bad they didn't also have a washing machine. And maybe a dryer.

Glaming up

A while ago my daughter-in-law, Diane introduced me to the nail buffer, maybe in an effort to "glam" me up. I loved it. I buffed and buffed and was so dazzled by the sparkle that I went out and bought 3 more nail buffers so I'd have one in almost every room...
Yesterday, with the encouragement of my hair dresser I had my eyebrows tinted in an effort to reduce the "wobble" across my brow caused by the dreaded old age "thinning"....
Now I'm wondering what's next? A dress?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Coffee and desert

I gave up coffee many years ago but I still have a passion for the desert..(I guess this particular VFW shares that passion)...
Edward Weston though just cuts to the chase, forget the mashed potatoes and salad..

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Lately I've had blogging-inertia. Every morning I visit a series of blogs and when I come to mine I think, why doesn't someone update this thing. What I need is a designated blogger, sort of like in baseball only without the stadium, the bases and the chewing tobacco.

Get a life!

I hate that expression: Get a life! When you lose something you hear people say, "well, you're just going to have to get a life". What if that was your life? People say, "when one door closes, yada, yada, yada." What does it take to make a life? Isn't it a combination of many things? Who says change is always good?

I want more

This morning I saw a 50 year old man wearing hot pants and smoking a cigarette in a long silver holder. I saw a woman in spike heels and fishnet stockings schleping a baby and two toddlers. I saw a man playing a tuba and a chihuahua sipping a latte. I saw a young man giving a young woman a hickey while people flowed around them like water. I saw a rooster on a string leash parading through the crowds crowing every 3rd step.
I heard one man say to another: Good Morning!
The 2nd man said: What's good about it?
Man #1: You're alive and kicking. What more could you want?
Man #2: I want more! I want more!

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Some guy has invented a "walkstation" to replace the traditional "workstation". Apparently you walk on a treadmill while working on the computer, talking on the phone, etc. What I don't get is, how do you put your feet up on the desk and read the paper? (oh wait, that's county employment I'm remembering...)

R.I.P. Hap Denton

Our friend Hap died Tuesday night. In this photo she is dancing at her "Celebration of Life" party in September. It's been a real honor, Hap. Here's to a life well lived...

Point Lobos

Yesterday Irene and I and our friend, Joyce spent the day at Point Lobos, just south of Carmel. Irene's cousin, Wayne is a docent there and gave us a private tour. What a beautiful day. Perfect blend of wildness, weather and company!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Beware the Beatnik

Bohemians were red wine drinking poets who hung out in garrets. Hippies wore tie dye, made the peace sign with a little "V" of their fingers and experimented with lot of substances. BUT beware the beatnik exploding from alleyways and ivory towers and living by their code of rebellion and mutiny!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Yesterday a couple of young boys flew by my house on bikes. Giddy, one shouted to the other: "Oh, I feel so young!"

Health Advice

When I was pregnant with my first son the doctor said, "How much do you smoke?"
"About two packs a day," I answered.
"Try to cut it down to a pack," he said cheerily.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Dead end

In the past week in the Santa Cruz Sentinel obits I noticed that people: graduated from this planet, passed on, were last seen, left and met their makers. Interestingly, no one "died".

A time honored tradition

Hitting up dad for some cash....(my 13 year old grandson, Ty and his 40-something dad, Sol).

My side of the bed

A certain panic wells up if I don't have a stockpile of books waiting....

Sunday, October 21, 2007


This morning there was a guy walking around the Flea carrying a big scythe. The flea market has become one big sad-fest with a closing date of Thanksgiving weekend. Hundreds of us who have gone to the flea every weekend for 3 decades are now on personal panic-buying expeditions.
I overheard a fellow customer say to the man with the scythe: What are you doing?
Man with scythe: I'm hoping to get this sold.
I think that's already happened the other guy said.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Free range

Santa Cruz is a "cruelty to pumpkins" free zone...

Fall, west coast style

Who says we don't have "colors"?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Middle ground?

When I dress in bright colors I feel like a clown....
And when I dress in muted colors I feel like a potato farmer. Is there no middle ground?

Cauliflower Market Prices

I was up early enough this morning to catch the Cauliflower Market Prices: market steady, cartons film wrapped CA white 12s 8.00-9.00 some 9s 8.00 organics greens 18.00.
There's a whole other world out there: "In The Dead of Night" is a real place. I once listened to a radio call-in show at 2:00 AM all about cement. And there's always the suicide call-ins with a troup of people manning the phones bent on talking people out of destruction. And if you're real lucky you might catch a snippit of the midnight waist-band measurement discussion...

Two Away Zone

Sign on beach in San Felipe, Mexico...

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Monday, October 15, 2007


Peggy Chin, an RVer, gets a group of 40+ women moving. She shared a variety of percussion instruments and some women drummed and chanted for the first time in their lives. Drums do that for people. And we come easily back to the pulse.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Convention Central

All week I've been at a women's RVing convention. Here I am on one of my volunteer shifts as cart driver. That's what women do. They volunteer a lot... (home on the 15th)

Sunday, October 7, 2007

On the road again

We're leaving tomorrow morning for a week of rving. I will have my trusty laptop with me and hope to post a blog or two during the week. Back full time on the 15th!

Surrounded by art

It's Open Studios in Santa Cruz County. Everywhere I go there are signs directing me to another artist's studio. It always buoys my spirit to know I am surrounded by people who
live the creative life.

Taking a stand

I picketed Sears & Roebuck once for five years. A private little picket, more like a boycott really. They'd been kind enough to give me a credit card and because those were the very lean times I fell behind in my payments and couldn't keep up with their 21% interest rate.

They resorted to calling our house day and night. They called once too often, at 6:00 AM and after one of my kids answered they threatened to take "your mom to jail". That's what started my protest. I'm just happy they came to their senses over the years and neither I nor Sears seem to be carrying a grudge.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Friday, October 5, 2007

Home on the road

In 1947 my brother and I hitchhiked to Cleveland Ohio from Los Angeles with my father.

He was a writer always working on the "great American novel" and he also wrote a weekly column for a "Negro" newspaper in LA. Where ever we were he'd find the postoffice and mail his travel column off.
I came across one of these columns recently and learned we arrived in Cleveland with 47 cents "in our jeans". I read how lonely he was and how afraid as we tramped through snow and wind without a ride in sight.

I remember even at its harshest how protected I felt on this trip and though my father was trying to find us a home I never was looking for anything more than I had right there with him. (here's a photo of my brother and me in Texarcana, Arkansas.)

Thursday, October 4, 2007


No one else need apply.

Shade tree

Range cow takes a break...

Affordable housing

"Fixer" with a view and native landscaping. Comes with skylights and pet crow.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Mrs. Galucci and me

For two and a half years my mother paid Mrs. Galucci to come to our house every week and give me private violin lessons. I hated it and so did Mrs. Galucci. Finally after this long torturous time, Mrs. Galucci took my mother aside and said with her heavy Italian accent, "You should save your money. Your girl cannot play the violin." That was my last lesson. (this photo by the way, is not me.)

For Keeps

It's always good to plan ahead and every one of us can use a little space...

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

We believe you...

We believed you then, Anita and we believe you now...

Hollywood Bowl

When I was a kid my father and I spent a lot of summer and fall evenings at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. We saw the Bolshoi Ballet and we saw operas but my very favorite times were nights spent just listening to the Philharmonic Orchestra and sitting next to my dad. I listened to the cellos and the strains of violins and the thrill of trumpets tearing open the vast sky. I felt the twitch of my father's tweed and the LA breezes and watched the sunsets bleed over the hills and I couldn't imagine life getting any better.

Monday, October 1, 2007

The blog suffers

I haven't been my old blogging self lately but sometimes even a retired woman's dance card is full. I will be back to full-timing it very soon!