Monday, March 29, 2010

Inappropriate Use of Children

Video number one - babies eating lemons for the first time. Hilarious yet cruel.

Video number two - young children singing Portal's Still Alive.

I'm not even angry.
I'm being so sincere right now.
Even though you broke my heart and killed me.
And tore me to pieces.
And threw every piece into a fire.
As they burned it hurt because
I was so happy for you.

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Do what?

We went to see a house today that is owned and rehabbed by this guy.

I'm sure it will be no surprise that the house wasn't in good shape. Weirdest feature - giant lightbulb in place of the banister finial.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

This is exciting and interesting news

This post at Blog Baltimore says Baltimore is going to fight for Google Fiber. That would be amazing.

The author doesn't specifically mention UMBC but it's a fantastic school with lovely science oriented students and it's less than eight miles from the houses we're looking at in Baltimore. (I made a fun bike map for Cullen from one of the houses to front door of his school - there were turns every five hundred feet or so. He'd need a little robot on his shoulder telling him where to turn!)

The more science and tech jobs available in and around Baltimore the better.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Song of the Day

Toy Dolls performing Nellie the Elephant - the perfect song to play while dancing with small children. Try it.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Stop it!

The bank that owns this house that I am obsessed over marked it down again. this time by nearly twenty thousand dollars.

Of course it doesn't matter if they were giving it away, I still wouldn't be able to afford it. I've read that restorations on historic properties can cost up to 400 dollars a square foot. Since this home clocks in at nearly 5000 square feet that's a cost of up to two million to restore it. Sure it would be amazing and probably worth it if you had the money, but I sure don't.

Cam and I took a drive up to see it a couple of weeks ago and wow, it's in even worse shape than the pictures make it look. It didn't seem to have come through the five feet plus of snow we got this winter very well.

Like all addicts I try not to think about this house and then bam, something reminds me of it or the owners try and tempt me by dropping the price! Away with thee foul pushers!


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Health Care Reform passed

What a shame it was watered down so much. I'm particularly troubled by the part about no money to be spent on abortion. I'll have to see how it's worded but historically abortion banning harms women in often terrible ways. Lawmakers often seem not to know that abortion is the medical term for miscarriage.

When I had my miscarriage, way back in 1991, my diagnosis was inevitable abortion. My fetus had died several days before I started bleeding, as evidenced by the doctor being unable to find the heartbeat on my last visit, so an abortion was in fact inevitable. When things came to a head I lost three pints of blood before I could have the surgery that I needed. Then I needed to stay in the hospital. All together the bill was in the thousands and that's just the financial cost. I was devastated and depressed for quite some time after.

Should I then have to pay for this medical care myself because some bozos who haven't been to med school for even one day decided it's wrong for federal money to be spent on "abortions"? It's frightening and sickening how much control people who aren't affected have over the bodies, minds and lives of others.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Interesting/Crazy things from last few days

Video and a terrific letter from Annie Oakley, one of my childhood heroes.

Article with suggestions sent to the Pentagon. Made me miss the days when I knew the diagnoses of the people writing in to me.

Wonderful post by Carrie Ryan about some of the thought process behind her amazing zombie books. I've had similar conversations with a friend of mine from Europe who marvels at how all of the knowledge the Romans had was lost and wonders if something similar could happen today.

Divorce rate blamed on one boy...

And a couple of tweets about house hunting today.

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Crazy bathrooms

The layout of this particular bathroom is odd. You're bound to bang the hell out of your hip as you try to get the toilet, then once you're there you're right in front of the window. If you're a dude you're going to be showing off to the entire neighborhood...


Monday, March 15, 2010

School, ugh

I love this piece from the Onion, about the entire nation has to report for scoliosis testing, as it really brings back all those terrible memories from school. Embarrassment, dismay, horror, all the things we felt when we had to go to some dreadful mandatory thing, whether it was a video about menstruation or everyone lining up in the hallway for mumps jabs, which happened to me when I was 13, despite already having had mumps, or climbing that perishing rope in gym, or whatever it is. There are several in this story and by casting them as something adults will be forced to do the Onion makes a brilliant point.


Friday, March 12, 2010

I wonder what they'll call this filly

Many racehorses get their names from sort of combination of their parents' names. This little filly is from Run Away and Hide, out of Office Party. It seems like there would quite a few funny names she could be saddled with, but not so many that are dignified.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Super fancy

What's special about this house? It has a secret house inside it. A l0g cabin so fancy it actually has its own name. I guess that's why this thing is more than two million dollars.


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Two houses I particularly like

I like a wide variety of housing styles, most of them a bit older. Here are two house that are super cute and charming in the Arts and Crafts style.

That one looks like it could be a Candy-striper.

That one is in yummy shades of olive and avocado with a beautiful porch.


Monday, March 08, 2010

Cute and charming

Gabby is there anyone who doesn't love you?


Entering year two of my house hunt

It's boggling but true - I'm now entering year two of my search for a house. In February of 2009 I wrote to a local housing counseling agency and asked them sign me up for their next counseling class. It took until September to finish the class. By November I was trying contract number two - which of course didn't work out due to extensive mold issues and cracks in the foundation of the house.

Now here it is March and I'm still really nowhere, without even any prospects in sight. I looked at two houses a week ago. One was very cute but a thousand square feet smaller than the listing said, and was still snapped up two days later, the other, which I loved, turned out to be in the middle of a short sale, even though the listing said not a short sale and vacant and ready for move in. It's depressing.

Today I found this post and am wondering if I should look at more expensive homes and offer the range I'm looking in now. It's true many homes are still way overpriced, the tiny home's price dropped fifty thousand just before we looked at it and then it sold right away, after sitting for months at a 2008 price.

It's all crazy and hard to figure out.


Sunday, March 07, 2010

A manly man

Sir Ranulph sounds like a stud!

Sir Ranulph was the first man to visit both the North and South Poles by foot and the first to completely cross Antarctica by foot.

Last May, at the age of 65, he climbed to the top of Everest, the world's highest peak, to raise money for Marie Curie Cancer Care.

Sir Ranulph had a double heart bypass in 2003 and suffered a heart attack two years later as he came agonisingly close to the summit of Everest.

He ran seven marathons on seven continents in seven days in 2003 and climbed the treacherous north face of the Eiger in 2007.

I'm quite impressed and I wonder why I don't remember hearing about him. I read extensively about mountain climbers back in the 90's, reading at least thirty books about various adventurers.

But anyway, my concern here is that Sir Ranulph may have suffered a stroke. It seems odd that someone who has enough control over their body to do all these amazing athletic feats would drive into the oncoming traffic like that. I hope he, and everyone else injured in the crash, is okay.


Saturday, March 06, 2010

Short animated films

Looking for the dl on the short animated films nominated for this year's Oscars? You can find most of them and a little bit of commentary in this week's Quality Time column. There's also a one paragraph review of all ten Best Picture nominations.


Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Who recruits these kids?

Here's an interesting press release from my county police.

Here's the part that caught my eye:

Detectives used a 14-year-old female to check the compliance of retail establishments with State tobacco laws.

How does that work? Is it legal for a girl that age to volunteer for that kind of duty? I'm sort of boggled over the very idea.

Monday, March 01, 2010

The Student Attacks the Teacher

This story was all over my Twitter feed today. I'm not ashamed to say it made me cry. I'm not the only one, several people I follow said the same thing, that it made them cry.

Respect to the author. It must have been very difficult to write.