Deconstructing A Delightful Comment From A Dubious Source

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WP tells me that this comment is spam, but it’s so uplifting that I had to share it with you, my gentle readers.  Despite its tarnished origins, I think that it might be one of the best comments that I’ve received in 10+ years of blogging.  Let’s see if we can learn from it, shall we?

~ ~ • ~ ~

• Sentence #1 - a nice simple greeting.

You can never go wrong with direct and pleasant.   

•  Sentence #2 - flattery.

Oh yes, I like it.  More praise please. 

•  Sentence #3 - a glance backwards.

Isn’t it sweet when someone shares a piece of his life with you? 

•  Sentence #4 - more reminiscence.

I feel like I’ve found a kindred spirit here.      

•  Sentence #5 – action intended to create friendship.

Please do, I’m sure that he’s as charming as you are.  

•  Sentence #6 - flattery again.

Oh sir, I blush thinking about how much you like what I wrote here.  

•  Sentence #7 - expression of gratitude.

What better way to end a comment, I ask you?  ‘Tis perfect.  

Monet, Spiders And Thoughts Thereupon

I took these photos while standing on our deck early yesterday morning.  It was foggy outside and the world looked like something out of a Monet painting.  Nature’s beauty charmed me, but also lured me into a much too contemplative frame of mind for a Monday morning.


Seeing my world in this hazy way left me feeling grounded + old.  I realized that I’d seen it all this way before, but was now remembering that there’ll be a finite number of other times that I’ll see it this way again.  Feeling introspective, I was.


But as if on cue, when I went back inside the house to refill my coffee mug, I saw this little spider climbing up the inside of the screen.  Now here is a critter who’s living in the moment, I thought.  Good for him.


He’s applying himself to the task at hand with all the enthusiasm + strength that he can muster.  And perhaps he has the real message of this early morning: get out there, start climbing and do something.  No need to get stuck in maudlin contemplation when there’s life to be lived now.  Spider Wisdom 101.

The Unsolved Case Of The Purloined Tomatoes

As I was walking around the back of the house on a bright and sunny summer morning I noticed that a red ripe tomato from my container garden on the deck above had fallen onto the path below.


Curious as always I wondered: How did that happen?  


So I walked up onto the deck where I discovered more tomatoes off the vine.  Tomatoes with little teeth-y marks on them.  Tomatoes that seemed to have somehow fallen from the vine prematurely.

– • –

Immediately my mind went to our favorite sneak resident squirrel, Fuzzy.  So I bided my time and waited to talk with him when he stopped by for his daily afternoon visit.


After we exchanged the usual pleasantries, I looked him straight in the eye and asked: Fuzzy, do you notice anything different around here?  There seems to have been a crime committed.  A theft.  

– • –

To his credit Fuzzy took the time to look around before he denied all culpability in the crime.  He looked to his left.


He looked to his right.


He glanced immediately below onto the deck.


Then he suggested that the real culprit in this crime was that nasty old raccoon who lives in the old tree on the other side of the ravine.

– • –

When I mentioned that the nasty old raccoon hadn’t been seen in years and was presumed dead, and therefore incapable of stealing green or red tomatoes, Fuzzy ignored me.  This was of no concern to him.


Having answered my questions to his satisfaction, Fuzzy then set about doing that which he had come to do: he started licking the terra-cotta pot to get his afternoon salt feast.


And I was left with the impression that I’d been conned once again by Fuzzy the Squirrel.

– • – 

In Which I Converse With A Stranger Whilst Thinking Of One Particular Emoticon

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WHILE WAITING AT HONDA in the customer service area for my car to be repaired, a stylish 60-something woman spotted me reading my book, sat down beside me and started chatting.

That’s what they all do the minute they see me. They start talking.

She told me more than I wanted to know about her: she was retired, single, living on a fixed income, buying her sheets at one department store but her towels at a different one, preferred olive oil from upscale cooking stores rather than the grocery, and watched [nameless] funny TV shows each night.

# # #

COME TO FIND OUT, this woman had brought her car into Honda Service, without an appointment, because the remote transmitter battery in her car’s key was failing.  The battery needed to be replaced.

To me, this seemed simple enough. To her, however, this was a big deal.  

What this woman did not seem to understand was that even when the battery part of her key went dead, she could still insert the key into the car lock and turn the key manually to open the car door.

# # #

NO, SHE THOUGHT THAT when the car key battery went dead she’d have to have the car towed from who knows where and replace the whole lock– which was going to cost hundreds of dollars.

So there I sat a victim of chit-chat overload, dumbfounded by what I’d heard. Somewhat baffled, almost wordless.  

I was about to explain to her how locks work when the service department called her name indicating that they had completed her repair.  So I said “good-bye” and was left to wonder why it is that the clueless people find me– even when I’m minding my own business, they. find. me.   O_o

Fiddling Around

Today I’m doing Throwback Thursday.  

This means that I’m posting a photo of myself taken a long time ago so that you, my gentle readers, will have another clue about what makes me who I am today.

And who would that be exactly?  A woman who appreciates what she learned as a girl, but refuses to ever play the violin again.

Ally playing her violin

~ ~ • ~ ~ 

If you’d like to know how I learned to play the violin, view the following video of kids, who like me, were taught to play the violin using the Suzuki method

And what lasting effect did this have on me?  Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, in all its variations, haunts my dreams to this day.

A Blog Post Confirming That Responsible Adults Do Not Lead Interesting Lives


Nothing to see here.  Move along. 

• • •

It is Tuesday morning and I am without a single topic or event to share with you, my gentle readers.  Usually something happens in my life during the week, something that prompts me to write a story, add some photos, share a few links, ponder a thought.

• • •

But today I am without flapdoodle, images, twaddle or pithiness.  ‘Tis a sad day, indeed.

• • •

Instead of something interesting to talk about, my responsible adult life of late has revolved around:

  • annual doctors’ visits;
  • watching painters paint the exterior of our house;
  • car & SUV repairs;
  • hand-washing dishes in the sink because the dishwasher is leaking;
  • haircut + skin care;
  • cleaning out the garage;
  • a few martinis;  and
  • planning a couple of social events for later this month.

• • •

So let me ask you, my gentle readers: what have you been up to lately?  Do tell in the comments below.

A Bear Went Across The River To See Who He Could Court


There’s a WHAT? WHERE?  


• • •

They tell us that this rarely happens.  That’s what they say.

I mean, I’ve lived in southern Ohio for 25+ years and it’s a first.

Rather like the nighttime burglars who scared us into turning our lights on & speaking with one another.

Shocking, really.

Of course, the human miscreants have been nabbed.  Put in the hoosegow.  Sent away for bothering us here in suburbia.

• • •

But this fellow

is getting away with anything and everything that he can…

because the authorities don’t want to mess with him…

and because he’s cute.

Never underestimate cute.  Remember Smokey? And Yogi? And Fozzie?

But you have to wonder, did they manage to have 2 Twitter accounts: @ClermontCtyBear & @MiamiTwpBear?

• • •

Just observe him, they say.

He’s only looking for a mate. 

Bears are good swimmers, they tell us.

Isn’t it wonderful how he made it this far north into Ohio?

If you encounter him, they suggest that you do this:

“Speak in a firm voice and if necessary, raise your arms above your head and clap.”

• • •

Taking a differing point of view than the authorities, I am.

Waiting each day to learn that an 85 lbs male black bear has caught a ferry back to Kentucky and is looking for love in all the right places.

Hoping to go outside at night without fear.  Too much to ask?

Don’t care if it is.  Asking for it anyway.

Tales of a Free Spirit in Suburbia