Saturday, December 31, 2016

Monday, December 26, 2016

New Nails...

It was time for a trip to the nail salon, to have a fill done on my nails.  Several of them had some damage and/or the acrylic was separating.   My tech inspected them, removed the bad ones, and gave me a complete nail make-over.   That included a new color..."It's time you got a new color - and today's your day.  It's still a neutral color, so it will go with anything.  But I think you'll be much happier with nails that are more feminine, and very noticeable.  Girls will love it, and you'll find yourself getting compliments on your nails."

She was right.  I love them!

And I'd better...because they stand out whenever I use my hands...there is no practical way to keep them hidden.   Anything I do involving my hands puts them on display.  The girls at the beauty salon had good things to say - as did one of the grocery store clerks.  My wife has been fairly quiet about them...though I did hear a comment that "your nails are a lot prettier than X's."  (She's a hostess at one of the home shopping channels.)   And I'll take that as a compliment!

I recently bought a new camera...the first one (brand X we'll say, it shall remain nameless) didn't take nearly as good pictures as the one I was replacing.   I checked by taking a picture of a subject with the old one (when it decided to work right) and then taking the same picture with the new one.   It's disappointing when a new purchase doesn't work as well as the one it's replacing.

So I headed back to the big box store where I bought it, and went to the customer service desk.   I was in my usual androgynous presentation...see below.  (This was taken just before a lunchtime meet-up with a business acquaintance, and is about as masculine as I can appear. But he knows what I look issues.)

(Taken before a lunchtime meet-up with a business acquaintance,.  It's about as masculine as I can appear. But he knows what I look issues.)

"May I help you, Ma'am?"  I explained that I wanted to return the camera - I added that it works, but doesn't take as good pictures as the old one.  He asked if I wanted to exchange it for the same model camera, or a different one.    I handed him a picture of a different brand and model from their website.

He called the camera department, said that there was a lady who wants to get a "insert brand and model here" camera and asked if they had one.  They did, and he said "Just a moment, Ma'am, I'll go get it."  When he returned, he made the adjustment to my credit card, handed me the package and receipts, and said, "Have a happy holiday, Ma'am." I wished the same for him, and was done.

Quick and painless...the new one takes better pictures than the old one...    And the "checker" at the door, said:  Have a wonderful holiday, Ma'am."

The business acquaintance (from the lunch meeting mentioned above) knows of my sartorial style.  And he has never said a word about it..."it is what it is."  The server got a bit confused and just addressed him as "Sir."  No gender specific forms of address for me!

And that's fine...better "none" than "Sir."

More later...


Thursday, December 22, 2016

To all my readers and followers:

Wherever you live, this brings my best wishes for you to have a joyous Holiday Season, and a very Happy New Year! 


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Quickie: I thought I'd seen everything. Until...

...I saw an older Toyota Prius on the interstate on the western shore (Baltimore side of the bay), all decked out as an imitation Low Rider.  It was very low to the ground,  with huge chrome wheels and thin tires.  Wish I could have gotten a picture!

Unfortunately I was the only one in my car, and the camera was in my purse on the back seat!  :-(

The Prius first appeared in the Japanese market in 1997.  Thus it's only perhaps 19 years old.   Wonder if it will show up one day at a local, or maybe an "open," car show?   Most traditional car shows are age-restricted to 25 years old or it will be a while yet before it's eligible for some of them - if the modifications don't disqualify it.   Some shows don't have "classes" for modified cars.

I was checking out some settings on a new camera recently, and found myself (what a coincidence) in one of the pictures....   This is one of my old house dresses, with a long sleeve tunic underneath.  It's warm, very comfortable, and I wear this type of outfit around the house every day.   I've been out in the yard in them, with little issue from my wife.

Now I'm thinking about finding a way to wear one of them out and about.  It won't happen immediately, but one of these days, you'll hopefully find pictures of me wearing one of these dresses at the store...or better yet, on the train or sightseeing in another town.

Keep your fingers crossed for me...

More later,


Sunday, December 11, 2016

You can't keep girls from shopping...

...even if some of it was mail order.

My new flats arrived by UPS, and they fit fine.  They are a croco-finish, with snip toes, and they're comfortable.  Even my wife likes them...on me, of course.  They're too big for her.   And it's nice that she occasionally tells me when she wants me to wear them...

That's a new skirt in the picture, but flash made the color too bright and red. It looks like "lipstick red" but in reality, it's not.  More about it in the following section.

It had been a while since I visited a thrift I stopped in for a few minutes.  Needless to say, a little voice spoke to me as I looked through the rack of skirts:  "Buy me, buy me!   Take me home with you!"  And this skirt jumped out of the rack, right into my arms.  I tried it on, and it fit!

It's a polyester skirt, so it won't wrinkle, and it's lined so it's not see-through.  It could almost be a sister to the paisley skirt I like so much.  And it will work well for cornfield changes.   Looks like I should get a lot of use out of this one, too!   This, its paisley sister, and a denim shorter skirt, with about 5 blouses, should be enough for a week on the road.

Color is not like the photo that one, the red is too brilliant.  No, it's red like in the pix below.  Almost a wine color...  And I love it!

Later, I was paying my bill at the beauty salon...and one of the stylists noticed my nails, commenting how pretty they are but asking about why they're shorter than usual.  (The nail tech had made them all the same length as one which had issues and had to be shortened.)  She thought I should grow them out again, and my stylist agreed, though she put her hand next to mine and hers were even shorter.   "It's tough for a stylist to have long nails.  But you deal so well with them, you should keep them long."  And we all got a chuckle.

If you recall, earlier this year I discovered that a guy working in an auto parts store here on the Delmarva was working in a skirt and flats.   Then he disappeared for a while.   Needing some oil for the old car, I dropped in the other day.   And, SURPRISE, the guy in a skirt is back.  I saw him from afar.  Now I just have to be there when he is, so I can ask him for some help finding something....

More later,


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Things kids don't recognize anymore...

When was the last time you used onion skin with carbon paper?  What the heck is that, you thirtysomethings-and-under may ask?

Back in the good old days, well before Commodore and Atari broke down the doors for personal computers, before pagers, brick phones and then "new" flip phones broke down the doors for smart phones, before Hewlett Packard became the go-to choice for printers, and before Xerox became a generic word for copier, there were these noisy things called typewriters (many were made by Remington) on almost every desk in the office.

You typed on a keyboard, just like today, but the keys were linked by mechanism to long "arms" with letters at the end.  Very noisy when those arms hit the paper, which was on a hard-rubber roller and it moved as you typed.  At the end of the line, you then hit a return bail with your hand, and manually advanced one line/moved the roller back to the beginning position.  More noise.    You can most likely see one of these at nearly any antique store these days...

How would you make a copy of that letter for your file?  And one for your boss in Paducah?  Remember, there was no Xerox.  You went to the shelf, picked up two sheets of onion skin (very thin, almost transparent paper, like the outer skin of an onion - great for sending via air-mail, which doesn't exist anymore either), and two sheets of carbon paper (thin paper backed on one side with lightly-bonded carbon.  Very messy.)  Stacking the paper properly with letterhead paper on top, a piece of carbon paper facing carbon side down, a piece of onion skin, then another piece of carbon paper facing carbon side down, and the last piece of onion skin.  Roll it into the typewriter, with the letterhead facing up,  and go ahead with typing your memo. 

Woe betide you if you made a mistake...there was no easy way to correct carbon copies (remember, no white-out yet, nor any correction key!)  You simply tear the whole thing out, crumple everything up, and start over.  (No recycling yet...just throw it in the garbage!)  Be careful, don't make any more mistakes...    Need to calculate some figures to use in your memo?  Remember, there are no calculators as we know them.  Adding machines multiplied by repeat addition. 103 x 6 calculated very clumsily as 103+103+103+ 103+103+103.   Ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-CLUNK.

I can remember on Saturdays, playing with the "calculators" at Dad's office, huge old things that had gears and made all sorts of noise.  One thing for sure, Dad (the manager) could always tell when his employees were working, from the din in the office...and nobody was talking!  At the time (early to mid-1950's), this was advanced technology, since you didn't have to write figures down and do the math manually. 

Even a slide rule was considered "high tech" - for those privileged few who knew how to use one.

Just a little refresher course about "the way it used to be..." back in the halcyon days!

More later,


Saturday, December 3, 2016

Quickie - Seen in a store window....

While we were in Maine a couple months ago, I noticed this sign in one of the store windows...and couldn't resist a picture.  

For those who choose to imbibe, it may be a friendly the start of this holiday season!