We have a thermometer that reads in both Fahrenheit and Centigrade. I don’t like the metric system much. My fault. Not the systems.
With metric I spend all my time calculating and converting distances in my head. Since its my head I often end up with some pretty odd results, like the back yard would be two miles long.
But I think I like centigrade although I think it woefully imprecise. I do like it to explain how cold it is. Minus fifteen is much closer to how cold it feels to me. Five degrees sounds like I’m complaining about nothing. But minus fifteen! Well, that makes it sound manly even to dare to venture outside!
Perception is always better than reality.
I am now the official master of dishwasher repair. We’ve done six loads and while the dishwasher doesn’t work any better than it did before it stopped cleaning the dishes it certainly doesn’t do them worse. More to the point there’s no weird grinding or explosions or leaks.
I feel I deserve the right to call myself the master. This means that I can go to your house and if your having problems with your dishwasher you have to endure hours of pointless elliptical advice. And if you’re foolish enough to attempt a repair in my presence that means I have the right to lean over your shoulder and spout instructions that have little to do with the situation and when its all finished I get to take credit for its success and get to say, “well, if you’d done it like I told you it would have been fine!”
Just one of the infinite pleasures of being a guy.
The guitar playing is going well. No one seems to appreciate it but me. Its frustrating because I’m not playing with anything like my old style and speed. I did a good version of “Your So Young and Beautiful” for my friends birthday and I was happy with my articulate playing.
What’s odd is that my left hand is hurting far less than I anticipated. Its stiff and strength is slow in coming. But its my right hand that’s giving me fits. It feels like my right thumb is dislocated. Yesterday I even had a hard time grasping the door knob to get back in the house. Finally had to do it left handed.
It makes keeping the baseline going on some of the fingerpicking numbers excruciating. Double picking is impossible as are glissandos. But the odd thing is I can do a near perfect rondo.
Rondo’s are those strums that most people know from flamenco music. Its the strum where you lead with your index finger and then follow with the other fingers. It makes a sweet full sound and gives a sort of malicious arpeggio when used in pop stuff. (Super cool on electric guitars.) What’s odd is that my rondos are better now then when I was playing near full time. Some sort of body compensation for having no thumb?
I heard from a good friend in London yesterday. That always pleases me. What makes it worth mentioning is that out of nowhere he is suddenly writing to me in text speak! In Europe text messaging is much more prevalent than it is here. Doctor’s confirm appointments via text messages! (Stupid that I know so much about doctor’s office). Aside from the kids texting each other non-stop like it was a private twitter account business use them constantly.
What made this notable was that my friend started his message with “glad to read u are”. U? Instead of you? U?
This is the way civilization crumbles.
We got through the day okay. I must have missed my friend more than I admitted to myself. After the dogs finished trying to kill me on our long walk (ninety minutes, would have been longer but the three of them were too excited to behave. The gentle dog spent over an hour biting me and flying around at shoulder height. The giant dog kept bounding at me and trying to fly at my head height. While my puppy spent the entire walk in her military posture: the task is to get there and then go home!) my puppy stared at me for a while and then went to get a toy that she pressed hard against my leg.
We played some. Her entire play mode reminded me of something. I just got an email that reminded me of what.
There’s nothing more tragic to me than the death of a child. One of my puppy’s “patients” succumbed to leukemia after Christmas. He was 12 years old.
His mother sent me a pained but charming note thanking my puppy for the brief happiness she bought to her son. She remembered how desolate the kid felt in the hospital and she recalled in vivid detail how my puppy did her therapy dog rounds, how she poked her head into her son’s room and doctored him with a lick on the nose.
The kid didn’t come out and play with my puppy and the other kids very often but his mom recalls how my puppy would always make it a point to come in with whatever toy she was playing with, often a roll of toilet paper and press it into his hand, poking him until he played with her.
The kid followed her web site. He often got exasperated with her but he always wrote to her explaining his exasperation.
I’m proud of my little puppy. As proud of her that she was able to figure out something was wrong and felt like trying to do something about it.
It saddens me for a kid to die. It makes me wonder why I’ve been spared when a child was not.