Sunday, April 23, 2006

Simple Pleasures

From MaryBishop:

Listing ten simple pleasures...

1. Walking on the beach

2. Reading

3. Watching the sunrise from the windows in my home office (I'll try to remember to take a picture some morning. It's awfully early to be remembering anything, though.)

4. Laughing with my friends

5. Visiting the Memphis Zoo

6. Watermelon

7. Flip-flops

8. Finding something I lost

9. Reading to Wally (a story for another day)

10. A good nap

I can think of at least ten more simple pleasures, but I'll save those for another post.

Tagging anyone who cares to play along...


Saturday, April 22, 2006

World's Oldest Living Blogger

I don't usually feel old, and by some standards, I'm not. I mean, to Wally, the 82-year old man I read to every morning, I'm practically a baby. But the 20-somethings call me "Ma'am". Thirty-somethings aren't in my dating pool anymore. Not that they were when I was in my thirties, either, but my point is that the numbers are starting to matter to me.

What brought this on, you ask? Well, I'll tell you.

Last night I finally got around to updating my blogger profile. As in, filling it in. Then I thought it might be neat to find out who else on blogger shares my tastes in movies, music, books, etc.

Big Mistake. Huge. Equal in magnitude to deciding to run to Target in my Saturday a.m. hang-around-the-house outfit because it was too early for anyone I knew to be up and about. Live and learn.

Back to my point: Is there anyone on blogger older than thirty? Actively blogging, that is. Because, I swear, every profile I encountered ended up belonging to people between the ages of 15 and 25. On the rare occasions I did find someone closer to my age, the blog hadn't been updated in years. What happened? Did they all go to that great blogspot in the sky?

I think I am, at age 47, the World's Oldest Living Blogger. Forgive me if I display the banner upside down.

Cammy, WOLB

Friday, April 21, 2006

Simple Truth

From AMERICAblog: Because a great nation deserves the truth

He'd never take a walk with me either.

Monday, April 17, 2006

In the Words of Women

Once again motivated by Kimananda...(she's a very good influence).

Listed below are some books written by some very impressive women. As I understand it, this is the markup key:
Bold = I read it
Italics = I've been wanting to read it, or I might like to read it.
Question marks= Titles or authors I've never heard of.
Asterisks = I've read something else by this author.
Plus signs = My own additions

So many I haven't read; so many I hadn't even heard of...this is gonna cost me a fortune.

Allcott, Louisa May–Little Women
Allende, Isabel–The House of the Spirits
Angelou, Maya–I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Atwood, Margaret–Cat's Eye (She has several titles I would like to read someday.)
Austen, Jane–Emma (I've read everything except Northanger Abbey)
Bambara, Toni Cade–Salt Eaters ??
Bank, Melissa-Girls' Guide To Hunting And Fishing
Bardi, Abby - The Book of Fred ++ Funny, edgy, fresh, real
Barnes, Djuna–Nightwood
Beauvoir, Simone–The Second Sex ??
Blume, Judy–Are You There God? It's Me Margaret (Childhood favorite)
Burnett, Frances–The Secret Garden
Bronte, Charlotte–Jane Eyre
Bronte, Emily–Wuthering Heights
Buck, Pearl S.–The Good Earth
Byatt, A.S.–Possession
Cather, Willa–My Antonia
Chopin, Kate–The Awakening (Has been on my To Be Read shelf for about 5 years)
Christie, Agatha–Murder on the Orient Express (I've read everything of hers.)
Cisneros, Sandra–The House on Mango Street
Clinton, Hillary Rodham–Living History
Cooper, Anna Julia–A Voice From the South
(I really need to get this book. I've heard she was a fiercely independent and dynamic woman.)
Danticat, Edwidge–Breath, Eyes, Memory
Davis, Angela–Women, Culture, and Politics
Desai, Anita–Clear Light of Day
Diamant, Anita-The Red Tent
Dickinson, Emily–Collected Poems
Duncan, Lois–I Know What You Did Last Summer
DuMaurier, Daphne–Rebecca
Eliot, George–Middlemarch
Emecheta, Buchi–Second Class Citizen ??
Erdrich, Louise–Tracks
Esquivel, Laura–Like Water for Chocolate
Fielding, Helen-Bridget Jones's Diary
Flagg, Fannie–Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
Friedan, Betty–The Feminine Mystique
Frank, Anne–Diary of a Young Girl
Gedge, Pauline-Child Of The Morning ??
Gilman, Charlotte Perkins–The Yellow Wallpaper
Gordimer, Nadine–July's People ??
Grafton, Sue–S is for Silence (I've read this entire series. )
Hamilton, Edith–Mythology
Highsmith, Patricia–The Talented Mr. Ripley
hooks, bell–Bone Black
Hurston, Zora Neale–Dust Tracks on the Road ??
Jacobs, Harriet–Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl ??
Jackson, Helen Hunt–Ramona
Jackson, Shirley–The Haunting of Hill House **
Jong, Erica–Fear of Flying
Keene, Carolyn–The Nancy Drew Mysteries (any of them)
Kidd, Sue Monk–The Secret Life of Bees
Kincaid, Jamaica–Lucy
Kingsolver, Barbara–The Poisonwood Bible (* I have The Bean Trees on my TBR shelf.)
Kingston, Maxine Hong–The Woman Warrior
Klein, Naomi-No Logo
Larsen, Nella–Passing
Laurence, Margaret-The Stone Angel
L'Engle, Madeleine–A Wrinkle in Time
Le Guin, Ursula K.–The Left Hand of Darkness
Lee, Harper–To Kill a Mockingbird
Lessing, Doris–The Golden Notebook
Lively, Penelope–Moon Tiger
Lorde, Audre–The Cancer Journals
Martin, Ann M.–The Babysitters Club Series (any of them)
McCullers, Carson–The Member of the Wedding (LOVE her. I also recommend The Heart is a Lonely Hunter)
McMillan, Terry–Disappearing Acts **
Markandaya, Kamala–Nectar in a Sieve ??
Marshall, Paule–Brown Girl, Brownstones ??
Mccullough, Colleen-The Thorn Birds
McDonald, Anne-Marie-Fall On Your Knees
Mirvis, Tovah - The Ladies Auxiliary ++ On being an Orthodox Jew in Memphis
Mitchell, Margaret–Gone with the Wind
Montgomery, Lucy–Anne of Green Gables
Morgan, Joan–When Chickenheads Come Home to Roost ??
Morrison, Toni–Song of Solomon (I tried, I really tried.)
Muller, Marcia - Till the Butchers Cut Him Down ++ (Or any of her excellent mysteries)
Murasaki, Lady Shikibu–The Tale of Genji ??
Munro, Alice–Lives of Girls and Women
Murdoch, Iris–Severed Head
Naylor, Gloria–Mama Day
Niffenegger, Audrey–The Time Traveller's Wife ??
Nin, Anais-Little Birds
Oates, Joyce Carol–We Were the Mulvaneys
O'Connor, Flannery–A Good Man is Hard to Find
Piercy, Marge–Woman on the Edge of Time??
Picoult, Jodi–My Sister's Keeper??
Plath, Sylvia–The Bell Jar
Porter, Katharine Anne–Ship of Fools
Proulx, E. Annie–The Shipping News **
Rand, Ayn–The Fountainhead
Ray, Rachel–365: No Repeats
Rhys, Jean–Wide Sargasso Sea
Rice, Anne-Interview With A Vampire
Robinson, Marilynne–Housekeeping??
Rocha, Sharon–For Laci
Sebold, Alice–The Lovely Bones
Sexton, Anne-Transformations
Shelley, Mary–Frankenstein
Shields, Carol-The Stone Diaries
Smith, Betty–A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Smith, Zadie–White Teeth
Spark, Muriel–The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (I should read this again, as a tribute in light of her recent death.)
Spyri, Johanna–Heidi
Strout, Elizabeth–Amy and Isabelle
Steel, Danielle–The House **
Tan, Amy–The Joy Luck Club
Tannen, Deborah–You're Wearing That **
Townsend, Sue - The Adrian Mole Diaries (all of them) ++
Tyler, Anne-The Accidental Tourist
Ulrich, Laurel–A Midwife's Tale??
Urquhart, Jane–Away??
Walker, Alice–The Temple of My Familiar **
Waters, Sarah-Tipping the Velvet
Welty, Eudora–One Writer's Beginnings (Shhh, don't tell anyone. Every woman in the southern U.S. is supposed to read her. I. Just. Can't.)
Wharton, Edith–Age of Innocence (*Her Custom of the Country is on my TBR shelf.)
Wilder, Laura Ingalls–Little House in the Big Woods
Winterson, Jeanette-Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit
Wolf, Naomi-The Beauty Myth

Wollstonecraft, Mary–A Vindication of the Rights of Women
Woolf, Virginia–A Room of One's Own
Banana Yoshimoto-Kitchen??

Well, that was embarrassing.

Off to read something fluffy and unimportant,

Friday, April 07, 2006

On This Day in History

Here's one of those meme thingies making the rounds. If you're so inclined, consider yourself tagged.

Go to Wikipedia and search on your birthday, omitting the year. Then list 3 facts, 2 births and 1 death from that date in history. Here are the ones that jumped out at me:

August 17

1807 - Robert Fulton's first American steamboat leaves New York City for Albany, New York on the Hudson River, inaugurating the first commercial steamboat service in the world.

1969 - Category 5 Hurricane Camille hits the Mississippi coast, killing 248 people and causing $1.5 billion in damage. (My name is Camille, and we had just visited the area a couple of months earlier. Coincidence?)

1998 - Monica Lewinsky scandal: US President Bill Clinton admits in taped testimony that he had an "improper physical relationship" with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. On the same day he admits before the nation that he "misled people" about his relationship


1786 - Davy Crockett, American frontiersman and soldier (d. 1836)
1893 - Mae West, American actress and playwright (d. 1980)


1983 - Ira Gershwin, American lyricist (b. 1896

I've Seen It All Now

Living in Memphis in winter is always challenging, but never more so than when there's the threat of snow or ice. At the first mention of any of the S-words (snow, sleet, slick, shiver, stranded), the grocery stores are overrun with panicked shoppers, desperate to ensure they don't endure the few paltry inches of white stuff we get without a proper stock of bread, milk, Campbell's Soup, and vanilla (for possible snow creme.) The streets are soon thick with traffic, slowed to a crawl by the lack of a staggered quitting time. Children in the area turn off their Playstations to watch the news, flipping the remotes relentlessly, in search of that magic S-phrase: School Closings. The outcome is a lot more predictable than the weather.

But we're past that now. It's April, right? Right. It's 70 degrees outside.

You can imagine my surprise when I got to work this morning, to find the office buzzing with just-reported news that area schools would be closing at noon. For inclement weather. 70 degrees. Thunderstorms predicted.

Surely not.

Surely yep. Our schools closed early today because. . . it might rain.

Granted, we had some very nasty storms north of Memphis last week. Twenty-seven people were killed in surrounding areas when up to 63 tornadoes pounded the area. Nothing to take lightly, but still. Because the storms were predicted to hit around the normal release time, our skittish school board decided to dismiss school at noon. Instead of panicked shoppers, we had panicked parents scouring the city for babysitters, and the streets quickly became a knotted quagmire of metal as lunch hour traffic met panicked parent traffic, and nobody could really move at all.

The irony is that we did have a severe thunderstorm--hail, lightning, a suspected funnel cloud.

When did it strike, you ask?

Noon, of course.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

A Day at the Zoo

Yesterday was a gorgeous spring day, and I spent the morning at the Memphis Zoo.

One word: Wow!

When I was a kid, zoo admission was free, and my parents took my sister and me there at least once a month. It wasn't always a pleasant experience. Smelly, dirty, listless animals. Smelly, dirty, over-amped kids. Not a good combination.

Boy, what time, a little education, and a lot of money will do. This is not the zoo of my childhood.

Few, if any, animals are in cages. Instead, they're in 'holding areas' designed to look and live more like their natural habitats. I'm always aware that they're not in their natural environments, but it's still a step up.

Here are some highlights:

I can't wait to go back.