Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Slice of Lime-Whatever Works

Wednesday I packed some leftovers for lunch.  I wasn't overly enthusiastic about them.  At lunchtime I just plain didn't want them at all.  A coworker ordered Chinese takeout and that was all the encouragement I needed to do the same.  She got something I hadn't seen before and it looked and smelled enticing enough that I duplicated her order and added spring rolls (which I devoured in the car before I got back to the office to eat the rest).  She said it was option D2 on the healthy option lunch menu.  When I looked it was called "Grasp at Good Luck."

Given the last few weeks around here I figured if I could buy some good luck for $7.75 and fill my belly in the process I was going to buy it, grasp it with two hands, and snarf it down with gusto.

Not Lost in Translation

Since there were a few of you who ventured to give guesses for the 8 words I posted at the end of the meme yesterday I will include the actual meanings today.  Then as a lazy blogger's excuse for a post I'll give you links to 3 dialect-related posts from between 3 and 4 years ago. 
1. Hinnerdale: Pennsylvania German for your hind end. Boy, you better straighten up and fly right or I'm gonna paddle your hinnerdale!

2. Dingolay: Trini slang meaning to dance with abandon. Yuh was at de fete (party) las' night?  Yes, an' I get on bad when I dingolay!

3. Stroobly: Pennsylvania German for unkempt or messy hair. I never saw such stroobly hair, now comb it before you leave this house!

4. Yampee: Trini slang for the gunk in the corners of your eye in the morning. So late in the day an' yuh jus' wake?  Don't lie I see the yampee in yuh eye.

5. Ferhoodled: Pennsylvania German for being completely mixed up or confused.Was it the second right after the old barn or the first right after the second barn?  Ach, I'm so ferhoodled!

6. Mamaguy: Trini slang for flattery designed to manipulate. Flora, yuh lookin' so good tonight.  Oh, don't mamaguy me!  I just finish rolling roti dough and I'm covered in flour.

7. Grex: Pennsylvania German for complaining, fussing or whining.  Especially applicable to fussy babies or children but applicable to adults who are out of sorts as well. Why you grexing so?  Things aren't so bad.

8. Pull bull: Trini slang for when people use their private car as an unlicensed taxi in order to make some money. Winston, yuh best go pull bull if we would pay the light bill this month.

For a bit more Dutchified Inlish check here.
For a few Trini phrases check here.
For a whole story in Trini slang check here.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Meme-tionary

It's been a long time but once again, Empress Lime and Queen Mimi join to bring you an outrageous meme.

Welcome to the Queen's Meme #54
We are going for the funny bone today. Ouch. I hate it when that happens. Technically speaking that is the ulnar nerve. Definition: The ulnar nerve originates from the C8-T1 nerve roots which form part of the medial cord of the brachial plexus, and descends on the posteromedial aspect of the humerus.
I told you this meme was humorous!

Confession: I stole this idea from Jamie at Duward Discussion. She used British and Australian slang words recently in a challenge to her readers. I found a site today called Inherently Funny and decided to do the same with words that sound ridiculously humorous when you pronounce them....IF you can pronounce them.
I have given you 8 funny sounding words. You have to supply a definition without looking at the website or dictionary first. I can't wait to see what you come up with.
Let's get started.

1. Diphthong: When your thong does not peek out of the top of your pants to properly highlight your tramp stamp.

2. Houp-doup: Well, my grandfather always referred to his handkerchief as a "shnoop-doop" so I reckon a houp-doup might be used to wipe something in more southerly regions.

3. Skullduggery
: I believe the grave digger in Hamlet was engaged in this activity just before Hamlet said, "Alas, poor Yorick!"

4. Reintarnation
: Well my driveway needed sealing and the roof was kinda leaky so we had to reintarnate them.
5. Glom
: This definition will only make sense to Susie and Logo but here goes...The sound a spurious brontosaur makes when he is presented with roses.

6. Gobsmacked: The promotional name for the big Halloween fight event between goblins.

7. Assmosis:
When you sit out on the deck furniture after it rained and you accidentally find a puddle in a chair you experience assmosis.

8. Lugubrious: Especially shiny lug nuts.

And now dear readers, the Empress shall add her own twist by offering you 8 words of Trini and Pennsylvania German origin for you to define in your own post or in the comment section.
1. Hinnerdale
2. Dingolay
3. Stroobly
4. Yampee
5. Ferhoodled
6. Mamaguy
7. Grex
8. Pull bull

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Rambling Update and the Power of a Hug

Isaac came through his surgery well.  They did seem to dope him excessively though.  He was far more spacey when we were allowed to see him this time than when he had the knee surgery back in May.  In fact, he remembers several details from the OR and recovery when he had his knee surgery.  He remembers NOTHING from the hand surgery.  All he knows is they wheeled him toward the OR and the next thing he recalls is waking up on our couch at home.  I can testify to the fact that he ate, drank, peed, walked, got dressed (ok, I saw to that part and it was like dressing a 6 foot rag doll), and engaged in conversation, albeit far less than rational conversation, all before being discharged to home.  I think they gave this kid enough drugs to knock out a Clydesdale.

There were several amusing exchanges, one centered on his desire for a hoagie with ham...ham...more ham, cheese, lettuce, and O's.  He was quite insistent on the O's being included.  O's were a very important ingredient.  Your guess is as good as mine as to what O's are. I opted for OniOns and banana peppers since they resembled O's. When I poured my son into the front seat of the car and got on the highway he wanted to know where we were going, why there were so many cars around, and....why was it windy inside the car.  Yessiree, he was waaaaay out of it.  Now we can share the experiences of being stoned out of our minds after hand surgery....well sorta, I actually remember being wasted.  His wastage is just a big blackout.

As for Calypso, she continues to have a rough go of it.  Her recovery seems to be a case of two steps forward and one step back.  It's been frustrating for her and hard for me to watch her unhappiness as her energy is sapped, her social life is nearly nil, and as she perseveres in trying to get through her senior year.  The nature of her illness and multiple complications has isolated her on several levels and for such a social girl it's been disheartening.  Some of the isolation has been necessary, some of it has been imposed by people reacting in fear or revulsion at some of the obvious lingering aftereffects.  This weekend she shared how painful the isolation has been.  Through the tears she also shared how much it meant when one true friend was willing to hug her publicly.  I encouraged her to hold kindnesses like that close in her heart to get her through the bad days and let it build a compassion in her for other people who are hurting when she is in better  health.

And with that I will say thanks to those of you who have extended the kindness of prayers, well wishes, and good thoughts or words of encouragement in the last few weeks. I wish I could give each of you a real hug.  This video will have to do until such time as circumstance allows me to deliver one personally.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Crying Uncle

I feel like in recent months I have spent way too much time sharing about maladies and mishaps among my family but here we go again.  Isaac will be having surgery on Thursday to repair a broken thumb.  The x-ray was hideous enough that it required no interpretation from the doctor.  He put it up and before I the doctor opened his mouth I was looking at the thing and thinking, "Oh damn...that's really ugly."  When he opened his mouth it only confirmed I was correct.  Isaac lost baseball season to knee surgery.  He has now lost what remains of football season to hand surgery.  As much as I loathe football (and this injury does NOTHING to improve my opinion of the sport given that it occurred during an away game and the frakking coaches didn't seem to think calling us before they got home was really, my opinion of the sport sinks to new depths) I do feel bad for Isaac's great disappointment at loosing yet another sporting season.  I'm also not overly fond of people cutting into any of my babies, even if the "baby" is 8 inches taller than me and has the strength to lift me off my feet.

So just in case anyone has lost count, Isaac had knee surgery in May, followed closely by Mr. Lime having foot surgery.  In the middle of June Calypso was hospitalized during a bout with mono which left her dehydrated.  She was again hospitalized at the end of August with a bacterial infection which required IV antibiotics and that whole episode reactivated her mono so she is still feeling like a dishrag and only able to attend school half days at this point.  Oh, and just in case I think I don't need to be worried about Diana, she called to say she feels flu-ish and her chest is badly congested and breathing is hard.  I told her to get her butt to the college health center.

So once again I find myself asking for prayers, good thoughts, healing energy, anything good you'd be willing to send in the direction of my entire family.  I'm feeling rather weary with having my everyone beset by all this.  However I know things could be worse and I know I need some good stuff to focus on.  To that end, here are the things I am counting a couple days early.
  •  My employers have been wonderfully understanding every time I've had a kid with a surgery/admission worthy event.  They don't give me grief about taking time off.  They've also been generous about providing care for us all.
  • I have some really great coworkers too.  Some of them are going through some hard times as well and generally we are supportive and encouraging of each other.
  • It's a thumb, not a spine or a  brain or heart or lungs or a myriad of other things.
  • Someone brought dinner tonight.
  • Someone else said they'd bring dinner the night of surgery.
  • The friends I can contact when the excrement hits the oscillating device.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Trini Tuesday-What's That on Your Shoulder?

Isaac has a class on invertebrate biology this year.  The first major assignment is to create an insect collection so Isaac has been spending a lot of time catching bugs, which is something he has enjoyed since he was a toddler.  He is in his glory when capturing bugs.  Case in point, one of my favorite pictures of his little boy hands a few years ago.
Then there is me, who was traumatized by having to do an insect collection in 7th grade.  I remember squeamishly capturing them and being horrified hearing their thoraxes crunch when I had to impale them on the pin.  I also remember begging my brother to pin a couple of especially icky specimens.  I've come a long way in my ability to handle insects.  My son is one reason.  My friend Flora in Trinidad is another.  So this week here's a very old (old enough that probably only 2 of you have ever seen it) Trini Tuesday post celebrating tropical insects from my last visit to the island back in 2002.
Before I went I called my dear friend who works in the entomology division of the Ministry of Agriculture.

Me: Flora, how yuh goin', gyul? I comin' to TNT fuh meh holiday and I have a favor tuh ask.

Flora: Meesh, I goin' good. You would be stayin' by us I hope? What I could do fuh yuh?

Me: Of course I would stay by all yuh. And well, meh boy does love insects. He been catchin' dem since he jus' small and I was hopin' yuh could maybe fix us up wit' some big, freakish bugs.

Flora: (delightedly) Oh gosh gyul, yuh make joke!

Me: No, Flora, I eh make joke. De boy love insects.

Flora: (with a little catch in her voice) Gyul, meh own chil'ren eh like insects. Yuh does make me real happy! I would be glad to collect some fuh all yuh.

When we lived on the island, Flora had taken us to the Ministry's "Bug Museum." The museum is a large room full of specimens of virtually every insect to be found in Trinidad and Tobago. May I just say it was a somewhat disconcerting experience. There are some seriously big ass bugs that are just insanely icky. There were beetles the size of my palm or bigger, with these terrifying looking horns coming off their heads. There were locusts bigger than my whole hand. There were arachnids of nightmarish proportions. I tried to confine myself to the order lepidoptera...(deeeep breaths, focus on the pretty butterflies....). I had not yet developed even the slightest degree of appreciation for many of the much more sanely sized insects I lived with in Pennsylvania, much less these titanic tropical beasts that looked like they could carry off small children.

I asked Flora if I could expect to find any of these creepy crawlies in my own back yard. She said yes but that since I already knew wasps and bees I really only needed to concern myself with scorpions. Nothing else I would come across in my backyard was a danger. Right, except when I am standing on a chair shrieking like a...well, like a girl...because one of those giant beetles with horns comes lunging at me. (In my own defense I hasten to add that I am the resident spider killer here at the House of Lime. Mr. Lime is the one given to standing on chairs and giving an estrogen heavy performance when spiders are in the vicinity.)

By the time I left Trinidad I was learning to be blase. Crib legs in dishes of water to keep the ants off the baby. Wash the dishes after use and before use because of the proliferation of cockroaches. Wait for ants to exit the water well in my iron before pressing clothes. Don't sit on tree stumps so scorpions don't go after you. Replace electrical switches and outlets with regularity because the ants crawl in, get zapped and the moisture in their bodies shorts it all out. React by nonchalantly asking, "Didja flick it off?" when Mr. Lime tells me he saw a 4 inch cockroach on my head when he woke up in the night. Understand that when I wake up with a swollen lip it is because a kissing bug bit me during the night. However, I still hopped around like a lunatic when a tarantula skittered towards me after falling from the ceiling and hitting Mr. Lime in the head. Mr. Lime just about had a heart attack. He climbed on a sofa after Petal's husband suggested Mr. Lime just step on the tarantula. Mind you, Mr. Lime only had on flip flops. I don't blame him for not wanting to squish that thing.

Fast forward to when we have returned to the USA. Isaac is almost 3 and now catches grasshoppers and crickets with considerable efficiency. He regularly comes into the kitchen dangling one by its back legs. I'm rather amazed that a preschooler's chubby fingers are nimble enough to catch the critters without damaging their fragile bodies. Also, I don't want to ruin his fun by screeching in horror, "Get that thing outta here!" Trinidad has helped me learn to control my responses and actually kneel down and marvel with him over whatever his latest catch is. Then I take pictures of whatever he catches. So now the routine is catch, marvel, snap a pic, release the critter, look it up in field guides to identify the species. He finds stag beetles, luna moths, walking sticks, preying mantises, newts, salamanders, frogs, snakes (the amphibians and reptiles I have enjoyed since I was a wee Lime myself).

Now it is 2002 and I am headed to Trinidad and Flora has promised to help me find some crazy tropical insects. As soon as I arrived she presented me with a scorpion she caught in her own yard. She also found a really magnificent walking stick,some sort of burrowing cricket, some gigantic beetle, and then I found this big katydid on the beach. It was dead but in good condition. I even picked it up and carried it myself, aren't you proud of me? It was really fun to see her glee as she caught these critters and told me all about them so I could tell Isaac.

trinibug (2)

She packaged them all up in jars of formaldehyde. She got me documentation from the Ministry stating that I had permission to remove the specimens from the island in case customs gave me trouble. Isaac was completely thrilled with his insect collection . I got some bonus "Cool Mom" points and Auntie Flora got a gushing letter of thanks and a bunch of "Cool Auntie" points.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Farts in a Jar vs. Heart Attack on a Plate

Mr. Lime generally does not engage in food prep beyond making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or occasionally firing up the grill at my request.  The exceptions to these generalities are when he and the custodians at his school seek to determine who can sear the length of the digestive tract most effectively.  One of the participants in this He-man contest acquired seeds for ghost peppers at the beginning of the growing season.  Recently they harvested a few not yet ripe peppers.  The intention is to harvest the peppers at various stages of ripeness to experience the changing nuances of flavor before permanently destroying every taste bud. In the pursuit of this goal, Mr. Lime prepared a batch of his famous pickled pepper eggs last week.  He checked on their progress this week.  When he cracked the seal my entire kitchen smelled like someone had cracked some record breaking flatulence.
Notice the fire extinguisher in the background.

Now perhaps you recall when I mentioned acquiring 20 lbs of organic yukon gold potatoes.  This past weekend I made a batch of very yummy and inoffensive scalloped potatoes.  However, I thinly sliced too many spuds to fit in the casserole.  I could have put the leftovers in a smaller dish but I also had just enough sauce for the first one and didn't feel like making more.  Instead I opted to make homemade potato chips, which is something I'd never bothered doing before.  I wanted to see how they'd turn out.  Dare I say they were also very yummy and inoffensive?  Ok, a few were a bit overdone while I was adjusting the temperature of the oil but Calypso declared those to be her favorites.  I think the evidence of the yumminess and generally agreeable quality of both my dishes is indicated by how quickly they both disappeared into the bellies of those around me.

While Mr. Lime declared his enjoyment of my two dishes he also stated his belief that his would be an equal hit.  I ask you dear readers, if you were to have your health adversely affected would you choose something that would cause you to produce your own mustard gas or something to stop your heart?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Da Count & Friday 55-Rain



It's been so dry around here even the moss in our heavily shaded yard is brown.  Some local wells have gone dry.  We've had three days of rain in the last week and a half.  I'm counting with gratitude every drop.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Eight Taggy Things

 This is a tag by this is a tag from Cooper via Xmichra. I am supposed to answer her questions and then write 8 of my own. Then I am supposed to tag 8 people to answer my questions. Here are her questions and my answers…

1) It’s your second date with a person you met on  They invite you to a formal party at a friend of theirs who lives on a massive estate in the country.  The two of you are dressed to the nines and drive up a long curved drive surrounded by trees. Eventually you pull up to a huge stone mansion with lush green grass as far as the eye can see in all directions.  Your date takes you inside, walks you across cherry wood floors, past delicate antiques and plush furniture to the back patio where about 70 people all sit in a dozen or so hot tubs.  Everyone, of course, is naked.  What’s your next move?

2) You have the choice of having David Letterman chaperone your daughter to her senior prom or having Stevie Wonder paint your living room.  Which do you choose and why…
Stevie with paint, definitely.  The creative potential would be great.  I'd keep changing the paint pan with different colors just so he never knew which color he was getting too.  I think it would be awesome to see the results.  Just make sure the windows are taped.  But have at it on the walls and ceiling.  That would be great.  Kind of Jackson Pollock meets kindergarten, I'm thinking.

3) Twenty people are protesting in front of your house. What are they chanting?
The Rodent Advocacy Team (RAT) are all dressed like hamsters and shouting, "Free the Hamster!"  I am able to distract them by having several furries infiltrate the crowd.

4) When Harry Met Sally.  The diner scene.  Could you pull that off?  In public? (applies to male and female)
Uh huh....yes...  Yes!  Ooooooh, yeeeessss!!!!!!

5) There are but three foods left in the world: Twinkies, avocado and spam.  How long will you last before resorting to cannibalism?
I think I'd boil my Birkenstocks and eat them first.

6) Speaking or which, the zombies are on the march.  What skills do you posses that will keep you alive?
 I know lots of fools with just enough brains to be tasty but not enough to evade lumbering zombies.  I'd send a steady stream of them in the path of the zombies.  Once that supply dwindled I'd just rely on my marksmanship.

7) You’re in the library browsing through the stacks in the far corner when a good-looking stranger catches your eye.  This person walks up to you and says you are the most beautiful/handsome person they have ever seen and will give you $50 if the can lick your feet for five minutes.  OK.  Now what?
If you still wanna lick my feet after I reveal them to you, show me the money and you can have at it.

8) Religion is outlawed in favor of personal spirituality.  How will that alter the rest of your life?
 The snarky side of me would be happy that a certain arrogant clergyman will have to find something productive to do.  The sincere side of me would say it's all about a relationship not a religion anyway.  The ornery side of me would wonder what the heck happened to the Bill of Rights.

And now on to my questions...

1. In 10 words or fewer explain the media fascination with Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton.
2. Which of your coworkers most drives you to fantasies of homicidal rage and which irritating behavior from this individual is most likely to set your fancy to flight?
3. Describe the art project you'd create if I gave you 3 dirty socks, a baggie of old bread wrapper twistie ties, a D cell battery, a pound of peanut shells, and a small bottle of dishwashing liquid.  What message would you hope to convey to the masses with your great piece of art?
4. For the next month you either have to go every where dressed in a mariachi jacket and neoprene pants or you have to enter every room, public or private, singing "Hit Me, Baby, One More Time."  Which do you choose and why?
5. Knock, knock.  Who's there?
6. What would you do for a Klondike bar?
7. Poof!  You will now be a member of the opposite sex for the next month.  What do you think you will learn?  What do you hope to experience?  What do you dread?
8. Fill in the blank.  I really ought to___________ but instead I will__________.

I'm tagging  Mary, Gman, Cricket (because I don't think he has ever been tagged yet), SuldogBeach Bum, Jazz, Craig, Fadkog, Moannie(who says she needs post ideas), and Bubba.  Yeah I know that's more than eight but considering how many times I have responded to tags from other people and NOT tagged anyone, I figure I could technically tag the whole lot of you.  Of course, you're welcome to filch this even if I didn't tag you.