Monday, February 27, 2012

Good and Bad

The blistering phase of the shingles seems to have passed. Now, there is just pain (not that bad), itching and numbness. I've used the recommended hydrocortisone to control the itching, but it has almost no affect. It's worse at night for some reason. The part of this that I really don't understand is the numbness. Nearly a full quarter of my head is numb, starting just below my right eyebrow and extending to just behind my right ear. WTF?!? So I looked up shingles and numbness and it seems to be one of the affects of the disease (is it a disease?). Kind of a relief because I was worried it might be something in addition to the shingles stuff.

Several weeks ago, our friend Geoff was diagnosed with prostate cancer. His doctor warned that if it had spread to the bone, it would not be good news. They did a biopsy and made him wait two weeks for the results. Needless to say, he was dreading the worst. It turned out that it had not spread to the bone and there is a general feeling of hopefulness that it can be removed and he will make a full recovery. The bad news is that he has to wait until April for the operation.

I've watched eight episodes with the new Dr. WHO.  I'm sure Matt Smith is a capable actor, but he is NOT Dr. WHO.

No more 'miss' in France  Okay, I know the French have done, and will do. some strange things, but this has to be right at the top of the list. If you've ever been to France, you know most unmarried women are quite emphatic about pointing out that they are 'mademoiselle' and not 'madame'. So who exactly composes these 'womens groups'? And what about all the fuss of keeping the French language intact?

Dumb Law of the Week: In Vermont, it is illegal to whistle under water!

À la prochaine, mes amis

Monday, February 20, 2012

New A/C

We bought a new air conditioner. The old one finally gave up the ghost. We can't really complain, it served us well for many years and it was one of the original units installed when the apartments were built back in 1973. The new unit is a Rheem and it runs a little quieter than the old one. It took the installers quite a while to put it in. As you can see in the picture, there is barely enough room for one person to work with it, and they are rather heavy. I asked the installer if this was the last of the original units and he told me there were still quite a few of the old ones left. I wonder if this one will last as long as the other?
Latinos. LOUD!! I've often wondered why latinos can't speak in a normal tone of voice nor listen to TV or stereo at normal levels of volume. I used to work in Miami where most of the people I had to deal with were latinos. I could hear their TV a block before I got to their house. When they answered my knock, which took quite a while over the din of the TV, did they turn down the volume so we could talk? Ha ha! Not on your life. Your were expected to scream over it. I bring this up because today, my neighbor in the building across from me, was sitting on his balcon talking at the top of his voice. It started when I opened the window around 14h00 and didn't stop until after 18h00. What can anyone find to talk about for that long at that volume? The only reason it stopped at 18h00 is because I closed the window.

Dumb Law of the Week: In Utah, the husband is responsible for every criminal act committed by his wife!

À la prochaine, mes amis.

Monday, February 13, 2012


Apparently, I had Chicken Pox when I was a kid. I could have sworn that was the only childhood disease that I didn't have, but I am now suffering with a case of Shingles, which according to all I've read, only happens to people who have had Chicken Pox.. It is on the right side of my head and around my right eye, which is basically closed. Very painful, and when it doesn't hurt, it itches.

Sometime around 2004/2005, a couple of cities in France, notably Toulouse and Lyon, started a bicycle lending operation.  For a few euros you could rent a bike for half-an-hour to all day.  If you used your 'credit card' and returned the bike within half-an-hour,  you could use it for free.  In 2007, Paris joined in the fun and started their Velib service.  Now, Paris has taken it to the next level and you can rent an electric car, for whatever period you need it.   Our friend Peter has written a great  blog post about it with some very good pictures.  You can see and read it at Peter's Paris

Just when I was about to change my mind about doctors, this appears: Study finds doctors not always honest with patients

Dumb Law of the Week: In Utah, birds have right-of-way on the highways!

À la prochaine, mes amis.

Monday, February 06, 2012


The other day while driving back from our failed attempt to find the AT&T Service Center, I asked Robb to stop so I could get a picture of the new bus shelters being installed by the city of Fort La De Da. You should notice one thing immediately.....there are no seats. Another thing which you may, or may not, be able to discern, is that there is a solar panel on the top. I'm not certain, but it's a safe guess that those are for the ads that are to be fed electronically to the shelters (You can barely see the 'white' ad spaces at the far end of the shelter). But why, I ask, would the city, which claims to be broke, be spending money for bus shelters with no seating?

We have a rodent of some sort. A few days ago, I pulled out a slice of bread and found one that looked like someone had taken a bite out of it. I thought Robb had done it, although it is most unlike him to do something like that. Then, upon further searching, I found this. We're not sure if it's a mouse or a small rat. I saw it briefly the other day when it ran across the kitchen floor. It wasn't very big, but it was black. I have seen brown mice, white mice and brown and white mice, but I have never seen a black mouse, so I suppose we're dealing with a young rat. I tried to catch it with one of those mouse traps that don't hurt the mouse. If you're not familiar, it's like a little box. You put the food in the back and when the mouse goes in to get the food, it tilts and closes the entrance. This rodent is either too smart to enter, too dumb to figure out how to enter or too big to enter. At night, when we're in bed, we can hear it moving the trap around but until last night, he never could get to the piece of bread in the back of it. I think Robb may have left the bread too far toward the front. We may possibly need a bigger trap.

And what does this tell you about the intelligence of the average American? Fox News on top: Cable, net celebrates 10 years at #1 in ratings

Dumb Law of the Week: In Texas, you cannot milk another person's cow!

À la prochaine, mes amis.