Monday, November 30, 2009

I spent most of the day at work piecing together broken ceramics from my recent dig.

Most of these are from the 1880s.

I am determining how many dishes, what types are present, and identifying the manufacturer's marks, where possible. The cup with the brown rose design was made in England, the pattern registered in 1880.

One of the outhouse pits had a smashed Mexican duck sculpture. I was skeptical that I could put it together, thinking that a lot of the pieces were missing.

I was wrong.

This was a hard one to put together because some of the pieces were burned and so the conjoins were not obvious. I use masking tape to hold them together, and will only glue a couple of the dishes and the duck pot for the report photographs.

Duck from top.

And speaking of dishes, a friend of my co-worker gave me her grandmother's wedding china from 1909. Originally a place setting for 12, I have enough for 11 complete settings. It was manufactured by the Habsburg China Company of Austria. I have to figure out where to store the boxes, since I don't have much closet space in my house.

Scalloped edges with brushed gold trim.

My mother was skeptical about a little craft project I undertook. One of the neighbor's fig tree branches had died so I cut it off. I liked the shape, so I decided to use it for a Holiday decoration. I spray painted it metallic silver, stuck it into a metal flower vase and packed soil around it. Voila! I hung gold and red ornaments, a few pine cones, and some acorn or pine cone glass ornaments. I think it came out nice.

Snowball wants to pat the ornaments.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

I took Mummy to the Butterfly Magic exhibit at the Tucson Botanical Gardens. The exhibit is inside a very humid greenhouse stocked with various types of tropical plants. It was somewhat ironic that the most interesting butterfly in the exhibit was actually an enormous moth.


There were handy identification guides available to look at- but there were perhaps 150 illustrated butterflies and I didn't bother to look through to figure out which ones were which.

A red one. With small white spots.

Yes the butterflies were pretty, but there was nothing particularly educational about the exhibit. I had to ask a volunteer where they came from.

And a blue one.

No information about the whys, wheres, hows, etc. of butterflies. So in that regard, a big "What's the purpose?"

Mummy enjoyed it though. She kept telling me take a picture of that one.


Afterwards we walked around the gardens. Then we went to the Humane Society and looked at dogs and Mummy kept getting in the way of the guy trying to feed the dogs. So I dragged her out of there and we went to Trader Joe's, where she got the vanilla meringue cookies she likes (there are gluten-free and taste like the marshmallows from Lucky Charms cereal).

At home I served leftover white bean soup (global warming alert!) and fried some polenta, which Mummy declared was really corn meal mush. I told her it was a fancy Italian dish, but really she was right.

Back to work tomorrow, which is probably a good thing as I am going a bit stir crazy.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving is my second least favorite holiday, with Valentine's Day getting the number one spot. But I still cooked mama a nice meal- cheesy vegetable quiche, mashed taters and parsnips, cranberry walnut sauce (I invented the recipe, it was very good), and a gluten-free carrot cake. Mama liked everything. Later in the afternoon we went to Michael's craft store and she bought yarn for a couple of presents, while I got 10 art craft kits to take to the local elementary school for them to give to needy kids.

Today, got my hairs cut by barber Paul.


While Mummy is here I am working on finishing one of my local history books. I am close to finishing it, although I am finding lots of loose ends that need to be completed.

I think I will be sneaking into the next State Dinner, dressed in my 1890s suit.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My computer has been repaired and I feel like a regular 21st century human again. Below are some pictures from the last week:

I beat the neighbors to putting up holiday lights.

Henny-Penny is doing well, thank you for asking.

Table set for dinner with Jeffrey and Mummy.

Spinach, walnut, onion, and bell peppers with melted Mexican cheese over corn tortillas.

A non-rage-inducing banana cream pie with store bought gluten-free crust.

I have been going in to work between 7:30 and 8:00 AM and every morning I see one or more coyotes out my window there.

Ralph and I got to watch this one jump the fence.

We tapped on the window and it paused to look back at us. Today I saw three. They are looking well fed.

I joined two anti-same sex marriage groups on Facebook to see what is in the minds of the people who support this cause. Interesting experience. Here are some comments from the NOM group, with my comments in bold afterwards:

Amber: Save the sacredness of marriage, please for the sake of our children who will grow up seeing and thinking it's okay to act on immorality! (children must never learn about faggots and must only have a father and a mother, no exceptions)

Beverly: This country was founded on Christian values and beliefs. Do your homework- how many of the signers of the constitution or declaration of independence were believers in Christ. Church and state is a misnomer propagated by people who want to complain when a biblical value is supported by the people. And if it's a democracy, then we Christians have a right to talk about and promote our God. (Most of the signers also owned slaves)

Jack: Nick,Please show me where the Bible says shellfish are an abomination.. It doesn't. It does say that Homosexuality is and the penalty in the Old Tesament is the same as that of Beastiality.... Death. (Levicitus 11:10 states: "And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you" My comment noting this was immediately deleted)

Kathleen: It could bring the peace that you look for unceasingly, that you wont find, even if you have your way and were given a certificate for Marriage, James. Peace will always elude you, until you accept your Lord (There is a fervent belief that laws must be based on the Bible, mostly New Testament).

The people running the two groups quickly remove any pro-gay statements and the worst of the anti-gay ones. The result is that the surviving comments by gay folks (including mine noting that Brian Brown was a closet case homo) make us fags look nasty and the anti-gay people look better than they are. There seems to be a lot of mental illness lurking among the anti-gay crowd.

So done with that mess, back to more important things like entertaining Mummy and cleaning up cat vomit.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Post 1969. My computer repairs will be completed tomorrow. I am thankful because I have been forced to read some of those "book" things that people used to read, back in the day before we became civilized through the wonders of bigmuscle.com or facebook. I even watched a telly show about Cold-Blooded Animals (and I am not talking about Maggie Gallagher, because even lizards apparently have feelings) with Mummy. I learned some facts, but sadly I have forgotten them.

I completed a report filled with Science and turned it over to our Editoress, who will make all of the verbs match. Now I am researching long-dead peoples and finding many errors in a report someone else (not from my company) wrote, because they confused two men who inconveniently had the same name.

I just checked and see that the only other man in the United States with my name is still alive and living in Florida. About 14 years ago a WW II vet contacted me, asking me if I was the son of this man, who he had gone off to Guadalacanal with in 1945 or so. I found the man he was looking for on the very rudimentary internet of 1995, and sent the guy a note with the other Homer's phone number. The guy wrote back and told me how happy he was to talk to the other Homer, who he hadn't heard from in 50 years. The likelihood of anyone ever confusing me with the other Homer, who is 87, is slight.

Friday, November 20, 2009

I put up the Holiday lights along my front porch a few days ago. They are the big colored bulbs, and every night a couple of them burn out. I save the bulbs to put on the mirror wreath above the fire place. I'll be getting the Holiday Tree on December 12 and my mother will once again remind me that trees were free when we lived on the farm. I'm thinking I will have a low key Holiday Party this year- but you never know.

Last night I was on Facebook doing important things- like playing their version of Scrabble with Ted. I stepped away from the computer to visit the restroom (who actually rests there, I have never figured out) and when I came back a lovely, nasty computer virus had taken over my computer. Our work computer guy has to fix it for me, it is that nasty, and he says that he knows several other people who were infected with this virus via Facebook. So I will be without a computer this weekend and will be living again in the Stone Age or something like that. I plan on cleaning house and sorting through a closet, rather than curling up in a little ball or cutting myself.

As I type this a mean fly keeps buzzing me. Please go away.

Mummy is going to knit Sandy a pair of socks, so tonight we are going to kidnap him and take him to the yarn store so he can pick out what color yarn he wants them to be. Perhaps I will pick out some cloth and have Mummy make me some new cloth napkins for my Holiday present.

I am also going to make a gluten-free, rage-inducing lemon meringue pie this weekend. Last night I made Spanish rice (sauteed red onion, multi-colored bell peppers, 1 can sliced stewed tomatoes, 1 small can tomato paste, 1 can black beans, and brown rice) and Mummy said it was very good.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

My mother arrived on Monday. She had difficulty in the first airplane (fell down while getting off of it), and she is saying this is her last time coming out here. She is feeling her age at 77.5. Well, my goal over the next three to five months is to get her healthier. More exercise, a better diet. She would rather drink a can of mango juice than eat lunch. What is it about elderly parents regressing?

So every afternoon we go some place and I make her walk around. She doesn't walk enough, which is a big problem. Last night she didn't have the right socks on and her shoes were loose. That made walking extra difficult. I did not go batshit crazy, although I almost wanted to.

I found the frozen Southwestern vegetable mixture that she likes and steamed some, sprinkling a little mozzarrella cheese on top. She was astounded that I could do that. Mummy always was a horrible, unimaginative cook. I am having to be very inventive because of her gluten-free/diabetic diet. Maybe quesadillas tonight.

Otherwise, we are falling into a routine and I'm thinking about what to do for Thanksgiving lunch. I purchased a couple of gluten-free pie crusts so I am thinking a cheesey parsnip and sundried tomato quiche, mashed potatoes, and a gluten-free carrot cake with cream cheese filling. She will have to take extra insulin that day.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

As many long-time readers know, I am an expert genealogist. I have done extensive research on my own family, on the families of friends (Jimbo is a distant cousin), and on the families living here in Tucson.

I have written histories for my ancestral families, and recently an aunt asked me for a copy of my father's family. Well, she ended up telling my sister that I had hurt her feelings because I did not whitewash things enough.

My evil grandmother was married twice. She divorced her first husband, the father of my father and aunt, and married her hired hand. He was a younger, pliable man from a poor background. She was able to control him, and as a result she was able to get away with the nastiest fucking shit imaginable. The version of the history I sent my aunt was very sanitized, but I did note that the evil-fucking-bitch-from-hell had married the "hired hand." My aunt and now my sister would prefer that I excise the first husband, my biological grandfather, pretend he didn't exist. He certainly wasn't a perfect man, but he tried his best to remain in my father and aunt's lives, but was unable to do so because of EFBFH Grandma.

In addition, my sister keeps saying, "EFBFH Grandma wasn't really that bad!" Right... From 1973 until her death in 1989 I never saw her in person, even though she lived a few houses away from my nice grandmother. I was one of her evil grandchildren, at age 10 I was so evil she couldn't see me or send a card. I did not exist. Perhaps that was just as well. She ruined every person she touched.

So anyways, not going to sanitize things any more. Not going to feel bad about hurting the feelings of assorted relatives. If EFBFH grandmother wanted to be remembered as a nice person, she should have been nice. Isn't that easy?

I don't have many photographs of EFBFH, and perhaps that is just as well. In contrast, I do have lots of photographs on my mother's side. Here's one below:

Back row: Francis, John, Emma, Ebenezer, Leland, Colonel, and Harrison.
Front row: Perry, Elijah, Charles, Edna, and Ada.

Not that these people were saints. In the photo you can spot a child molester, the parent of an illegitimate child, someone who abandoned their family for months at a time, and so on. They were a very well-respected family.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Here is a lovely email sent to me today:

For certain anyone who lives a lifestyle wherein the anus is used for sexual purposes is vile scum of the utmost disgusting variety. Anuses are fecal expulsion units - they expel used up rotten energy sources called food. Have you ever smelled a septic tank or a sewer?

Gay sex is about as clean as swimming in raw sewage! Not THAT is vile!!!

I've said it before, and of course I will type it again, straight men do not obsess about gay sex. The only men who do so are closeted homosexuals who loathe and hate themselves into a frenzy. The louder the screaming (e.g., Peter LaBarbera, Tony Perkins, or Matt Barber) the louder my gayday goes ping! ping! ping!

I pointed out to this wretch that semen leaves the penis from the same hole that urine comes out, so does straight sex involve swimming in raw sewage too? I am very confused now.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I made pesto pizza, a salad, and a cake for Forrest's 31st birthday.

A bottle of fine tequila for Forrest.

The cake was chocolate mayonnaise (really this is the best chocolate cake recipe ever) with a hazelnut cream cheese filling and a light chocolate frosting. It came out very good, if I can boast.

Still need a food stylist boyfriend though.

Travis is here visiting Forrest from Tennessee. He is enjoying the nice Tucson weather and having a nice time.


Somehow I managed to catch a little cold, and instead of getting my house ready for Mummy I just feel like lying in bed and having strange dreams.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Post 1963. That number is also the year I was sliced out of my mother's womb. Speaking of slicing, little Snowball is getting his furry balls removed today. He also is getting some antibiotic for the case of gingivitis that my buddy Mason pointed out that he had. It explains why Snowball has had nasty breath recently.

In better smelling news, I will be making Forrest and Travis pesto pizza, salad, and a chocolate cake with hazelnut filling. This is not a birthday cake for Forrest, whose birthday is tomorrow by pure coincidence.

Mummy arrives Monday. It will be nice to have her here for the winter, but my social life will be cramped. I guess I better clean house this weekend.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The All Soul's Day Procession this year was awesome. More people than I have ever seen at the event (thousands and thousands!). So many that it was difficult to walk and impossible to find people.

Brian and John came down from Phoenix. We went to The Grill and Sandy, Mark, Zane, and Winona came and we all had tater tots. Later at the procession we ran into Jessica.

John and Brian.

Please visit Brian's blog to see his beautiful photographs, at the very end you can see a portrait of me in my late-19th century attire.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

I am traveling back in time tonight for the All Souls Day Procession.

1890's Homer.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Poor Snowball. Didn't like going to get his shots. He will be even more unhappy on Friday when his little fuzzy balls go away.


The woman at the Humane Society told me he is a "Flame-point Siamese." And confirmed that he is cross-eyed.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Forrest and I went to Casa Vicente for Spanish food. We both had the gazpacho soup. It was delicious.

Forrest is excited about the parsley.

I had given a talk there the night before, and was somewhat distracted by the food while I talked about archaeology. So I suggested we go there. Forrest's throat is mostly healed from his tonsilectomy, and he can eat normal stuff now. No more pudding and milkshakes.

The friendly black tomcat came by our table and agreed to pose for pictures.

Don't tell Puff.

It was a nice time. And then last night I had supper with Kyle and Todd at Indian Oven. Perhaps I should eat some 'Merican food today.

As an aside, alright I admit to being a bit gleeful that Carrie Prejean got caught having a sex tape. I wonder what that piece-of-shit Maggie Gallagher, who hyped her as the most virtuous woman ever, is thinking right now.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

On a day when hatred and bigotry once again soiled my spirit, I have decided to focus on a happy moment.

October 1986, after wearing braces to correct my horribly crooked teeth for a total of 361 days, they were removed and suddenly I had a beautiful smile, something I could not have imagined would ever happen.

Anne-Marie and me. And a jack-o-lantern with braces.

I am wearing my favorite sweater, one that Mummy made for me when I was going off to college in 1982. I brought Anne-Marie, my cute orthodontist student from Belgium, a bouquet of carnations to thank her. Having straight teeth changed my life- gave me self confidence and made me feel less like the poor farmboy that I had been.

So a happy moment, indeed.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

A tragedy took place moments after this picture was taken.

Puff, Henny-Penny, and Don.

Henny pooped on Don's leg. Luckily, most of it hit the chair instead. It was embarrassing, however, to have it happen moments after you tell someone that she wasn't going to poop.

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