Inspired By A *Sincere* Spammer, Here Are Photos Of Pretty Spring Colors

I was wondering how I was going to introduce these photos then inspiration arrived in the form of a spammer. No doubt he’s a sincere dude, offering me unsolicited advice.

You see, kids, this spammer believes I’m too verbose to create good content, as evidenced by my last wordy post*. He mansplained graciously suggested that by using more photos in my posts, and fewer words, I could become a GREAT blogger.

Thus with a hat tip to this fine fellow, and a hope that this picture-filled post doesn’t burden him with the need to read & comprehend too many words, I give you seven pretty photos that showcase spring colors in the garden.

Also, Zen-Den wants me to wish spammer dude well completing fourth grade. We both think this might be a challenge for him… all. those. words.

BLUE sky smiling above

RED geranium in a terra cotta pot

PINK astilbe in dappled sunlight

GREEN trees as backdrop to screened-in porch

BLACK petunias [that are actually as very dark purple but are sold as black] in a terra cotta pot

PEACHY PINK drift roses

PURPLE salvia by a stone path

AND FINALLY THREE READER COMMENTS…

About hypocrisy versus sound judgement:

“I don’t know this woman but I think you’re protecting your personal boundaries. I think her response to your very thoughtful and honest suggestion speaks volumes. Sure, people can change. But that doesn’t mean they get to be let into your life. No thank you.”

~ Nicole MacPherson

“Boundaries, baby! Yes, Ally, I believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion/schtick/whatevs, but that doesn’t make them right or smart or even decent people. If there’s anything the I’ve learned since we’ve entered the aughts is that there are a whole lotta people out there I wouldn’t want to have dinner with…”

~ Pam Lazos

“Nothing hypocritical about avoiding people who aren’t good energy. I have to say I feel a little bad for Zelda. Not bad enough that I think you should follow her. Just sad for a person who seems to know something of the world, yet remains so self-focused.”

~ Crystal Byers

* The analysis of my word to photo ratio on the previous post shows 246 words per 2 photos. On this post, excluding this footnote and the captions on the photos, there are 42 words per 7 photos. Make of this what you will.

The One About Demolition & Dust, Home Improvements Have Begun

“Patience is what you have when there are witnesses.”

I don’t know who said it first but I like that saying.  Seems like the subtext of my week, both in real life and blog land*.

After months of waiting for our home improvement projects to begin, they began.  And I’ve been here at home for it, having a noisy, chaotic, dusty week of people and stuff everywhere.

BUT I’VE BEEN A PARAGON OF PATIENCE

The fact is I’m giddy to finally be underway so I’m attempting to overlook the inconveniences that I knew would be part of this experience. This isn’t my first remodeling rodeo, kids.

Below are a few photos that show some of what has happened thus far. Further updates on these projects and my blood pressure as they develop.

• • •

Out with the OLD, in with the NEW.  To protect them from damage the carpeted stairs have been covered. It’s difficult to walk on them now, but I’m not complaining.

• • •

I’m happy to see the end of the OLD tub, toilet, and tile. It was builder grade and ugly, but we lived with it for 22 years.

• • •

The OLD cabinet, countertop, and sink are gone, but the plumbing stays in the same place. Nice touch with the paper towel, eh?

• • •

This is our guest bedroom as it looks today filled with lovely, beautiful, NEW pieces of bathroom.

• • •

Shiny copper pipes in place with NEW bathtub installed immediately below. I’ve yet to see the fabulosity of the tub because it’s protected with plywood right now.

• • •

This is where there will be something NEW, a shelf niche in the shower. My interior design-y heart is thrilled with this upgrade.

• • •

Thanks to everyone who has checked in with me this week to make sure I’m hanging in there. I appreciate your moral support.

Happy Weekend, everyone. May it be all that you want it to be, which in my case is calm and quiet– and not stuck at home.

I’m sure you understand.

* The blog land saga is that my WP media account was hacked for the second time in half a year.  One of my unpublished photo was stolen, then used as the image on a blog post that referred back to my previous post, the one with all the interesting links.

Why? Because to someone somewhere in this world that seemed like the thing to do. To what end? I couldn’t say but it has been the icing on the cake of a difficult week.

The Happiness Engineers, btw, tell me WP takes no responsibility for any photos/images you have in your media account.  WP protects your words, but your images are your own problem.

Just dandy, huh?

May You Be Happy: 8 Interesting Links To Share On A Tuesday

ADVICE, IT’S EVERYWHERE

I’ve been asked to explain why I sometimes write posts that are filled with links. You see…

A long time ago I read an article, written by a marketing professional, about personal blogging. This article had advice about how to ensure that your personal blog had a balanced mix of content that’d appeal to a variety of readers.

Quite simply, the article said that to be perceived as interesting you need to write: 1/3rd of your posts about research, ideas, or professional topics; 1/3rd of your posts about updates in your personal life and how you feel about what is going on; and 1/3rd of your posts about hobbies or adventures.

While I don’t adhere strictly to this advice, I keep it in mind. It has influenced me over the years.

Thus as an example of the first of the three categories mentioned above, I give you, my gentle readers, the following list of 8 random links that I’ve stumbled over whilst flitting about online.

Enjoy!

EIGHT INTERESTING LINKS TO SHARE

• Apparently in France it’s called piscine. I’ve no problem with it, but some people are peeved.

Mine is green. Take a quiz to discover your aura’s color.  UPDATED: Mine is now blue. Take a different quiz to discover your aura’s color.

• I’m not sure I *try* to be nice, but I take this point…

• We don’t have a dog, but the mid-century aesthetic of this kibble dispenser caught my eye.

• Your doctor is talking about you. And it might not be in a flattering way.

• Watch and be entertained. Earworm to follow….

• I want to know the answer to this, too. Why is it so difficult to find normal sleeves?

• You can guess why Karen and Brandon are no longer popular baby names, but do you know which names are popular now? Meet Olivia and Liam— and all their little friends.

QUESTIONS OF THE DAY

Do you think the personal blogging advice shared in the first part of this post is wise or wacky? That is, would you say it’s AMAZEBALLS or WEAKSAUCE?

Any comments, insightful or otherwise, about any of the links above? That is, would you say any one link in particular is AMAZEBALLS or WEAKSAUCE?

Do you like using slang when you write your blog posts? How about in real life when you talk with people, do you use slang then?

~ ~ 💜 ~ ~

Move Over Grand Theft Auto, Pondering A Real-life Armed Robbery In Our Neighborhood

Because sometimes odd unexpected things happen…

Last week I learned that there was an armed robbery in this subdivision.  We’ve lived here over 20 years and this is a first.  I learned about it formally from the HOA [Homeowner Association] + informally from the neighborhood grapevine.

The robbery took place in the early evening and involved two men with guns stealing a new Volvo from a neighbor’s open garage.  It’s my understanding that the house security system with alarms and cameras wasn’t on at the time.

The neighbor heard noise in the garage, went to investigate, and found the robbery in process.  He was not hurt physically, although I cannot say how it affected him emotionally.  I don’t know him personally to ask him.

The police haven’t found his car and the men who stole it.  As of today this remains an open case.  My guess is it’ll never be solved, but will become part of the folklore of this large subdivision of 800+ homes.

• • •

A place to ponder. Drinking a mug of coffee while sitting on the deck on a foggy autumn morning.

• • •

It’s easy, and perhaps natural, to start thinking about why this robbery took place, to make up stories that might explain it.  I’m motivated by my need to make sense of this, to try to understand it.

It could be as straightforward as it seems.  The robbers who were driving a Volvo [and isn’t that interesting?] saw an opportunity to steal another one and took it.  It was a crime of opportunity, no advance planning.

This would be my preferred scenario.

Or it could be that the neighbor was working in league with the robbers, intending on splitting the insurance money.  After all, no one except the neighbor saw these two men, allegedly with guns, and because the security system cameras weren’t on at the time there’s no way to corroborate his story.

Or it could be that the neighbor owes money to someone, a bookie perhaps, and that someone arranged for payment in the form of his car.  Things like that happen in this world.  I watch police procedural TV shows;  I know things.

• • •

A view while pondering. Looking out from the deck into the backyard on a foggy autumn morning.

• • •

I’ve been trying to decide what I think about this robbery, discern how it makes me feel.  I’m not stressed by it.  I’m not worried about being safe. Instead I’m indifferent to it.

Is that peculiar?  Shouldn’t I be more panicked?

Of course, as Zen-Den pointed out, we always keep our garage doors closed plus no one wants to steal my 18 year old Honda.  Or his 5 year old one.  A fast risk-benefit analysis confirms his logic.  

Ain’t gonna happen.

Plus this robbery isn’t going to stop me from going for walks around this neighborhood.  If nothing else we might be safer now that more sheriffs are driving through here on a more regular basis.

From their point of view, we’re the place to be.

So that’s where I find myself this morning, hoping this is a one-off, an aberration and not the beginning of a trend.  I’m amazed that I’m writing about something so out of the ordinary that it doesn’t seem feasible, yet it happened.

And that’s all there is to it.

Comments, anyone? How would this make you feel?

A Character Study: Justifying Your Rationale About Doing A Tango With The Truth

~ INTRODUCTION ~

I NEVER INTENDED TO write about this person, she’s someone I knew a long time ago.  I’d guess that I haven’t been in touch with her for over a decade, maybe longer.

I got thinking of her because I found one of her business cards wedged in the back of my desk drawer.  I’m surprised I kept it, to be honest– but there it was and memories of her flooded into my brain.

So here’s a story, a character study if you will, of a pleasant someone who had her own unique way of rationalizing that which she said and felt no shame about telling, what were ostensibly, falsehoods.

• • •

ONCE UPON A TIME I knew a lovely woman who introduced me to a college acquaintance of hers;  I shall call this acquaintance Nedra.  The lovely women moved away but out of respect for her, Nedra and I still got together for coffee every few months.

Our relationship was superficial, but delightful at first.  Nedra and I had interests in common, reading and healthy eating.  She was dating at the time and had funny stories about her experiences.  I was remodeling the kitchen and had ridiculous stories about my experiences.

All would’ve been well IF I hadn’t come to realize that Nedra was making up stories about her love life. And her career. Stories that she told me, doing what I’d describe as, a tango with the truth.

• • •

I STUMBLED OVER THIS dance with reality while we were having coffee one day.  I hadn’t seen her in a while and I asked her about a guy she’d been on a date with, a date that she’d described in detail months before.

Well, she looked confused, baffled by my question– and told me I must be wrong about her, that she’d never been on a date like that.  Clearly I was mistaken.

Except I wasn’t. I’m not that addled-brained. I remembered quite specifically her conversation and joyfulness vis-à-vis this date. That hadn’t happened, but she said it had. Uh huh.

• • •

AS YOU CAN IMAGINE after that conversation I became more disinclined to believe what Nedra said to me, but I was intrigued because I’m a curious person who pays attention to people– and here was a character for me to watch.

Up close and in action, so to speak.

Time passed, like a year or so, and I was to a point where I didn’t want to meet Nedra for coffee anymore.  Beyond her propensity to make up stories, I no longer needed to be in her part of town on a regular basis so getting together with her was a chore.  On many levels.

Still, I wanted to know more about her reasoning for making up stories: why she did it and, you know, if she experienced any remorse about deviating from the truth. So I asked her, politely, tactfully, why she made up stories about her life and this is where it got really interesting.

• • •

NEDRA BELIEVED THAT BY making up stories about her life she was showing people how to make themselves whole.  She was, she felt, merely using her fictional tales to guide people to make better decisions about themselves.

She justified this by saying that when you think about it, scripted TV shows and movies were often fabricated stories that we accept as having a real impact on our minds, hearts, psyches.  We believe the stories and accept the messages contained within.

Therefore she was doing the same thing with her stories on a smaller, more personal, scale so that she could help people become more self-aware and feel empowered to do better. And as such she felt no guilt for what some of us might call lying.

• • •

Have you met anyone like Nedra who does a tango with the truth?

Do you think she has a point about scripted TV & movies being basically lies so why not do it too?

Was she naive or manipulative?

Have you found a business card from someone you lost touch with and got thinking about them, for better or for worse?

~ THE END ~