Monday, May 28, 2007


I've been blogging for 6 months and feel it is time to take a one week (give or take a day) break.
So to my faithful readers (all 2, 3 -- heck maybe even 4!-- of you): please check back in with me then.

photo by Offspring #2

Friday, May 25, 2007


Offspring #2's participation in the high school state tennis tournament was cut short today. After one of his serves, he crumpled down on the court with a dislocated shoulder. He was taken by ambulance to the E.R. where they put him out and the shoulder back in. (On a happy note, the nice ambulance drivers let his doubles partner come along for the ride!)

Painful -- in more ways than one -- end of the tennis season for Offspring #2.(We're thinking there is surgery in his future. Sigh.)

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

idol thoughts

Ah, a new American Idol was crowned tonight. I think Jordin will go far. But let's face it, the sixth season of Idol would have been Dullsville without the high entertainment value of Sanjaya!

This picture of Sanjaya with Offspring #2 was taken in Seattle during the recent high school band trip. (No faux-hawk, but a great picture nonetheless.)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

cars say the darndest things

In March I posted some thoughts about bumper stickers, including how they try to reduce complex concepts down to a few words that can be absorbed during the limited time spent at a stop light.

As I was driving home on Sunday from Lacey (where I dropped off #1 Offspring so she could catch her ride back up to college), I noticed a car where the driver obviously felt traditional bumper stickers were far too limiting. Since my camera was right next to me, I couldn't resist holding it up at the approximate angle and taking a shot. Because my eyes were on the road (yes, I'm telling the truth!), I had no idea if I got any kind of a picture. But when I got home I found that, low and behold, I had indeed captured this billboard on wheels!

So what was the message the driver felt so strongly about that he or she went to some obvious trouble and expense to post it on the vehicle? Here ya go:

Hmmm... now I'm confused. I thought Jesus had a little higher opinion of the whole faith thing. Didn't he say stuff like "Your faith has healed you" and "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.'" ?

OK you pastors out there (and you know who you are)...I realize we've been "dechurched" for a bit, but is there some reaallly new teaching I've been missing?!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Got Tubwater?

"Is there anything more refreshing than shower stall water? I think not."
--Marble the Cat

Friday, May 18, 2007

review on a partially read book...

I started reading Christopher Hitchen's God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. It was a Mother's Day gift from Offspring #2 who happened to see the author on The Daily Show and thought I might find it interesting. (He knows I like books related to the theo topic.)

And indeed I do find the book interesting so far -- I'm around page 80. However, I must admit the author is getting on my nerves. It's not that I have a problem with Hitchens criticizing religion. Stand in line, buddy, there is a lot to criticize! And I do agree with some of his points such as that a person can be moral without being religious. Totally no argument there.

But Hitchens is often way too extreme for my liking. He writes as if religion does almost nothing right and secularism does almost nothing wrong. (Let's face it, both have good points and bad points.) Further, he makes such sweeping generalizations! According to Hitchens, the religious mind is "literal" while the atheistic mind is "inquiring". This leads me to wonder just how many (and what sort of) religious people Hitchens knows! One other thing I find annoying is that the author takes extreme religious positions (which I'll grant are fun to knock), then acts as if they are mainstream. Hmm.... Did Hitchens study the topic fully before pounding on the keyboard?

In any event, I'll keep reading... and I may post final thoughts when I finish the book!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

woo hoo!

Today we found out that Offspring #1 landed the role of Viola in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night for the Skagit River Shakespeare Festival this summer. Is that a good role, you ask? Heck yeah! According to Cliff Notes (and who doesn't love Cliff notes?!): "For most critics, Viola is one of Shakespeare's most delightful and beloved feminine creations from his comedies."

Yep, we be happy!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

wise guy, eh?

On Tuesdays, I only work in the morning. This might have been for the best today, since it was apparently "wise guy" day.

Here are two examples:
Me: "Which is the clearest, lens one or lens two?"
Patient #1: "Umm... one and a half!"

Me: "So use these antibiotic drops four times a day for one week. Do you have any questions?"
Patient #2: "Yeah, I have a question! What's your favorite color?"

I could almost hear a drum rim shot!
(But actually, truth be told, I sort of like wise guys! They do keep life interesting.)

Sunday, May 13, 2007

happy mother's day...

Whoa! Here's a rather ominous looking picture for Mother's Day! What could this Grancel Fitz photograph mean?! I have three ideas:

(a) The photo suggests that the task of child rearing often seems to be a daunting one -- almost larger than life.

(b) Many moms try to do an especially good job because they realize that life is circular, and some day their kids may be taking care of them.

(c) One can do almost anything with a unique perspective and good photo editing software.

Any other ideas (or perhaps photo captions) out there?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Potato / Po-tah-to

The RevGalBlogPals are playing an "either/or" game this week. Here are their questions and my answers/preferences...

1. Mac? (woo-hoo!) or PC? (boo!)

Well, I have a PC now, but when it goes to computer heaven I would most likely make the switch to a Mac. They seem pretty darn cool.

2. Pizza: Chicago style luscious hearty goodness, or New York floppy and flaccid?

Actually I've never met a pizza I didn't like. (Travel tidbit: arguably the best pizza in the world is found in Bayrischzell, Germany.)

3. Brownies/fudge containing nuts:
a) Good. I like the variation in texture.
b) An abomination unto the Lord. The nuts take up valuable chocolate space.

Hmm...I'd have to say "sometimes you feel like a nut; sometimes you don't."

4. Do you hang your toilet paper so that the "tail" hangs flush with the wall, or over the top of the roll like normal people do?

I'll vote with the "normal people" and go with over the top of the roll. (However, the opposite way is workable... just as long as I don't have to do the Sheryl Crow one-square-only method.)

5. Toothpaste: Do you squeeze the tube wantonly in the middle, or squeeze from the bottom and flatten as you go just like the tube instructs?

When the tube is new, I happily (and yes, wantonly) squeeze it in the middle. However, when the toothpaste starts to run out, I switch to the "flattening up from the bottom" method.

Bonus: Share your favorite either/or.

OK. Slide rule or pocket calculator? (Is there anyone on the planet who would vote for slide rule??)

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

looking "wabac"

I've always been fascinated with the idea of time travel. My interest might have started as a kid watching Sherman and Mr. Peabody with their WABAC ('wayback') machine. I liked how they would travel back in time and "fix" various things so that events would end up happening as expected in the history books. Over the years I've enjoyed novels such as Time and Again and The Time Traveler's Wife, and movies such as the Back to the Future trilogy and Frequency.

Part of what keeps me interested in the time topic is that there is some science to think about as well. My buddy Albert Einstein showed how space is curved, time is relative, and time travel is -- in theory -- possible.

If I could travel back in time, I think my first stop would be to visit relatives/ancestors who homesteaded in the Dakotas. And, it would be nice if I could do something "useful" with time travel such as sound the alarm about carbon emissions earlier. (But would anybody listen?)

However, while it's fun to think about visiting the past, I believe it's important to live in the present and point towards the future. Since "Views from the Road" is a theo-type blog I will mention that this has been my issue with some churches (who shall remain nameless). They pretend they have a WABAC machine and it's set to 1953. It might be comfortable, but it's just not relevant.

It's time to adjust the dials, people!

Sunday, May 6, 2007

this is just to say...

I was looking in the refrigerator this morning for some tasty fruit and not finding what I wanted -- which for some reason reminded my brain of this poem:

This Is Just to Say
by William Carlos Williams

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

What I love about the poem is that I change opinions depending upon which side of the plum I am on. When I am the 'plum taker' I believe that Williams should of course be excused! When 'my' plums are missing I believe that Williams is selfish and his defense is weak! It's interesting to think about the poetry vs. pragmatism interplay. And, you have the whole 'forbidden fruit' idea thrown in to ponder as well. Good stuff.

In any event, hubby is at the grocery store right now, and I think I'll call his cell phone to ask him to pick up some... yep, plums.

Friday, May 4, 2007


Alrighty! I'm going to play the RevGalBlogPal's "Friday Five" this week! Songbird is having a birthday and thinking about parties. So we're supposed to respond to these five questions "about parties, birthday or otherwise".

1) Would you rather be the host or the guest?
Wow, that's a tough one since I'm not a big "planned party" person. I like the lowkey thirtysomething approach where friends just sort of wander in, open the refrigerator, and help themselves. But if I had to answer "host" or "guest" I guess I'd pick guest -- less work!

2) When you are hosting, do you clean everything up the minute the guests go home? Will you accept help with the dishes?
I try to clean up the major stuff, and the minor things can wait until morning. I would definitely accept help with the dishes, although asking guests to push the vacuum might be going too far. :)

3) If you had the wherewithal, and I guess I mean more than money, to throw a great theme party, what would the theme be?
It might be fun to do a "come as your favorite character from a book" party. I would be Antonia from Willa Cather's My Antonia.

4) What's the worst time you ever had at a party?
Hmm... I would have to probably say the "toga party" I attended in optometry school. Optometry students can't really pull off an Animal House party that well. We came in our bed sheet togas, and then mostly sat around looking goofy.

5) And to end on a brighter note, what was the best?
I think I peaked early. The best party was probably the New Years Eve party I had in childhood with my brother and the babysitter. We decorated for it all day and ate a bunch of food in the evening. We stayed up until midnight and then jumped on balloons to make them pop. Yeah, good times.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

just wondering...

I'm planning to visit #1 Offspring at college tomorrow. Might this be the view when I open the dorm room door?

Update: Change of plans! Not going until next week. That will give the laundry pile a bit longer to grow.

cartoon by good ol' Dave Walker from here