Weekend Coffee Share

wordswag_15073188796611453091488Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some timely  catching up with friends (old and new)!

If we were having coffee, I’d ask you how you did during week 2 of the WuFlu Quarantine. I bet you’re doing your best to pitch in, but there are some aggravations. We need to gambatte! Gambatte is Japanese and it’s used to encourage someone to persevere.

I’m happy that I got to work a full week and think I will this week as well. It seemed hard to continue to add value, but by having daily conference calls. A bonus is that it’s good social contact. I’m very lucky to be working with this team.

I finished reading (really listening to) David Mamet’s Chicago, which has a wonderful audio version. I also watched Paul Newman in Hud, which I’d never seen before. It made for a great follow up to Giant, as it’s a family drama set in Texas. Now I’m watching Newman in The Hustler with Jackie Gleason. It deserves its classic status.

I was livid about the pork that got crammed into the third stimulus package. Then the Kennedy Center, which got $25,000,000, announced they were firing their orchestra. Di they have to make that decision now? It seems shameful to me.

Last night, while I was taking a shower, the power went out. That’s always a a problem, but with the quarantine it was more of one. I managed to feel my way out of the shower and get my pj’s on. I heard a weird humming sound and didn’t know what on earth to think. After a while I figured out that our neighbor has a generator and that was making the noise. Luckily a half hour later the electricity came back.

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share

wordswag_15073188796611453091488Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some timely  catching up with friends (old and new)!

If we were having coffee, we’d be breaking the Stay Home WuFlu rules unless we were doing so virtually like Scott Adams does daily.

Last week because I work for the Census and was an Election Judge, I was out more than most. We used lots of disinfectant and kept our distance, but I did Census recruiting at a nearby Early Voting site.

I worked with such a wagamama person on Election Day. Since we just had 3 judges rather than the planned 5 it was a test of patience. This woman was convinced the moving of the polling place from her usual spot at a retirement community (for the very wealthy where she admits she was spoiled with three free meals she could order from the menu) would be a disaster. She didn’t come to set up the night before as required, but spent two and a half hours calling county employees and the warehouse just to calm her own nerves and wasn’t needed. The woman wore headphones the entire day, complained to voters about how she was put out and made herself a general nuisance to the management of the Park District where we wound up and to the fellow judges in our precinct and the two other precincts that she made the management move into a different room because there’d be a disaster if we were all together. It’s a shame some people can’t be cooperative and pleasant during an emergency. I was stunned when she made voters wait while she talked with her refrigerator repairman. They seemed to be as well. It was a long day as we started at 5 am and finished around 9 pm. But I’m still glad I pitched in as judges are really needed.

After Tuesday, I just recruited by putting yard signs out along public areas where we need applicants. I was in my car and hopped out to put up signs. It was nice to be able to move around and get work done.

Friday afternoon we were still to work, but that afternoon we got an email saying recruitment efforts were to be suspended. Then Saturday I received a call saying we could work from home planning and researching. I’ve got a few ideas, but I’m not sure how many hours I can do meaningful work. I believe some people are going into the office but I’m happy to get the work.

During the quarantine, I’ve been scrubbing and organizing. I did finish watching Death on the Nile, which I listened to as an audio book. The book was okay, as was the movie, though I’d say there was a lot of over-acting in the film. While Agatha Christie set the standard for mystery writing in many ways, even she got tired of Hercule Poirot, whom she grew to find pompous. Also, this was at least her second book where a group of people all with a motive find themselves on a vehicle.

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I’m now listening to David Mamet’s Chicago as an audio book. Since Mamet is known for the cadence of dialogue in his plays and films, and that dialogue in this novel has his style, I highly recommend listening rather than reading this book. The narrator has the right cadence and tone to capture Mamet’s style.

I think Adam Corolla had offered some wisdom on approaching the quarantine, which can get on our nerves. He says that prisoners often say, “If you don’t do the time, the time will do you.” In other words, use your time wisely. In addition to working half days, I’ll be  cleaning and organizing my kitchen and basement a bit each day and starting a new writing project. Well, resuming one. I have a historical drama in mind and I’m delighted that I just found my primary resource, which I’ve been hunting for for the last 2 days.

I’m also watching Hillsdale College’s online course on the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. What I really like is how the professor shares earlier documents that influenced the creation of these documents.


Wagamama = Japanese for difficult, irritating

Yellow

While this isn’t a City Daily Photo (CDP) blog, I’m inspired by this month’s theme day theme: yellow.

The gallery of CDP Theme Day entries for April is here. I love seeing what photobloggers the world over come up with.

My CDP blog, Jinan Daily Photo is here.

Elvis is King

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The cover of this children’s book about Elvis grabbed me. Elvis is King is a biography that introduces kids to the early life of Elvis Presley. Written by Jonah Winter, the book consists of illustrations made with clay and realia and short passages that describe the singer’s life from birth till he strikes it big.

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Readers learn a bit about Elvis’ family, his first guitar, his move to Memphis and his first record. It’s a quick read. I liked the illustration on the cover better than the book because the style of the faces was more angular than I like. Nonetheless, it’s a fun book, and one worth checking out from a library.

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge

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Newspaper reader

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Nudge, a good book on persuasion

Each week Cee of Cee’s Photography challenges bloggers with a fun prompt. This week we’re to find photos of subjects that begins with the Letter N.  .

If you want to see more Letter M photos, go here.

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Poem of the Week

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Amoretti I: Happy ye leaves when as those lilly hands

by Edmund Spenser

Happy ye leaves when as those lilly hands,
Which hold my life in their dead doing might
Shall handle you and hold in loves soft bands,
Lyke captives trembling at the victors sight.
And happy lines, on which with starry light,
Those lamping eyes will deigne sometimes to look
And reade the sorrowes of my dying spright,
Written with teares in harts close bleeding book.
And happy rymes bath’d in the sacred brooke,
Of Helicon whence she derived is,
When ye behold that Angels blessed looke,
My soules long lacked foode, my heavens blis.
Leaves, lines, and rymes, seeke her to please alone,
Whom if ye please, I care for other none.

Giants Gone

Giants Gone: The Men Who Made Chicago by Ernest Poole, who won me over with The Harbor, is a delightful read. Published in 1943, Giants Gone introduces readers to the people (Jane Addams was the only woman included) who built Chicago.

Till I read this, I had no idea why Ogden Avenue got its name, or why Astor, Harrison or Kinzie Streets got theirs. Poole illuminated these names by acquainting me with fur trader John Jacob Astor and “Indian trader” (sic) John Kinzie. I learned that William Ogden came to Chicago to get rid of what he thought was a stupid investment his brother-in-law had made. His brother had purchased $80,000 in land and Ogden planned an auction to cut his losses quickly. Well, Ogden had made back all the money after selling just a third of the property. Then he decided there was more to this muddy city than he first thought. He stopped the auction, went back East to settle his affairs before returning to Chicago to make a fortune. Ogden did make and lose money. He also became the city’s first mayor. So of course a street and school should be named after him.

Poole was born in Chicago and his father worked for P.D. Armour, the meat tycoon (pre-“The Jungle” era, we’re assured). Poole knew Leiter’s son and Jane Addams. His family socialized with many of the important families of the late 19th century. So the book contains personal anecdotes in addition to researched information. Best of all the book reads like a novel. It’s lively, smart and sometimes funny.