Live and learn!
Or: Inside a young mind
From The Gram With a Thousand Rules: “Subject: What Do You Mean We Live on the Outside of the Earth?
“We were sitting on the steps leading down to our sidewalk, the first time I ever remember thinking my mother thought I was a real person rather than a baby. My siblings were playing in the street, and I was sitting on Mother’s lap waiting for Daddy to come home for supper. It was a hazy day, and I could see the sun filtered by the clouds, and on the other side of the sky I could see the moon rising. I looked at Mama and said: ‘The sun and the moon and your eyes all look like the same size.’ She gave me a big squeeze and said: ‘You are a smart little girl.’ I never did figure out why she thought that, but what I do know is: That was the moment when my love for astronomy began.
“My sister Ruth helped it along when she came back from a trip to the Field Museum in Chicago with Uncle Bob. She told me all about the fascinating orrery she had seen in the Planetarium and drew me a diagram of it. ‘What? We don’t live inside the Earth?’ I knew the Earth was round, but I thought the sun and the moon and the stars above us in the sky were all enclosed in this ball we called our Earth. She took the Book of Knowledge’s astronomy book off the shelf and showed me a picture of an orrery so I could understand it better.
“My sister Eleanor was the next one to add to my knowledge when she told me the moon was responsible for the tides on Earth. That was the most laughable thing I had heard so far. She insisted it was true and tried to explain about gravity. This world just became a dangerous place. Ruth had told me we are not safely on the inside of our little snow globe, and if Eleanor was speaking the truth, our Earth with all of us on it was dangling out in space with only a thing called gravity to keep us from tumbling away. I spent quite a few days clutching on to furniture and walls just in case this gravity thing she talked about was true.”
Our ‘trees,’ ourselves
Spaceships and Robots and Stars, Oh My! Division
From Gregory J. of Dayton’s Bluff: “There is a shortage of tree-decorating-worthy holidays between Independence Day and Halloween. After all, what is one going to use for ornaments on a Labor Day tree? Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19) is tempting, but finding enough decorations would be a real chore.
“However, that period includes First Moon Landing Day (July 20, 1969); Sputnik Day, a.k.a. Birth of the Space Race Day (October 4, 1957); and Birthday of NASA Day (October 1, 1958), and is the time when many space-related science-fiction summer blockbuster movies have been released over the years.
“Put those all together, and what do we get? We get a mash-up of space, science and science fiction that generates more than enough ornaments, heavy on the science-fiction ones, to fill a tree that will fill the gap until it is time to create a Halloween tree.”
Vanity, thy name is . . .
Donald: “The Mitsubishi’s personalized Minnesota plate read: ‘HYEBAR.'”
Including: Unfamiliar Quotations
Hindsight writes: “I have said to my kids: If you want to know how Grumpus and I thought about things, check the quotes we saved. One source of those powerful little thoughts is Wordsmith, a blog about words. Recently I saw one by Ann Beattie, a novelist: ‘People forget years and remember moments.’
“That very day, I stepped out on the deck to deadhead some flowers to keep them blooming. One grandiflora petunia, a flashy beauty of purple with white fringes, had gotten so flower-heavy that Grumpus had stuck a tomato cage in the large pot. We set it on the bench. I could drape the plant through the wire frame so the flowers were displayed grandly.
[“As I worked to tidy up the plant, removing spent blossoms, I heard a familiar hum. There on the top rung of the cage, a hummingbird landed. Standing there, my face was a mere 18 inches from this delicate, sparkling little bird. I said nothing, and neither did the bird. We looked intently at each other. It was not frightened. He showed his long probing tongue, flickering it out an inch or so beyond that specialized flower-probing beak. Up close, I could carefully examine the layers of glittering green feathers, delicately ruffled along his throat and chest, no iridescent rose color showing on the throat. (Maybe it was a juvenile. [Bulletin Board says: More likely it was a female. See today’s Website of the Day.]) I was up so close to a magnificent living jewel.
“For a few minutes, the tiny bird and I were frozen in time, sharing a moment. Finally, he was gone. Grumpus said that silent communication was the bird telling me thanks for the food, and I was telling the hummingbird thanks for the lovely moment.”
Our theater of seasons
Vertically Challenged: “Looking out our window this morning, I thought it looked like the lilac bush was blooming! I could not believe I was seeing this at this time of year! I hadn’t noticed them till now and had never heard of this before!
“Daughter ‘Garden Girl’ told me this is common: ‘Yes, this year especially. Lots of “unusual” plant stuff on a stressful year. Late freeze, hot/dry, etc. Ton of seeds on trees like maple, Ash, pinecones…’
“So I guess it’s nice to learn something new every day! 😃”
Lawyergirl of St. Paul: “Responsorial to OTD from NSP, who says ‘The sock that disappeared in the dryer is now the Tupperware lid in the cupboard that does not fit any container you have.’
“That’s not quite right. None of the Tupperware lids fit any of the containers.”
A joke for today
Kathy S. of St. Paul: “Subject: A very childish joke.
“A fellow traveler on an elevator today felt she had to share this joke:
“Why is six afraid of seven?
“Because seven ate nine.
“Note: I did not create this joke. I merely punched the buttons for floors seven, eight and nine.”
Joy of Juxtaposition (responsorial)
Jerry Tjader writes: “Reading the note from Kathy S. of St. Paul about Four Roses bourbon reminded me of an old set of jokes, of which I can only remember one: ‘Your breath is like roses — Four Roses.'”
Then & Now (responsorial)
Triple-the-Fun of Lakeville: “The Happy Medium recently (September 29) told about his/her dad and how he had cut ice from the lake for their icebox.
“That brought back memories of my dad, who had also cut ice on local lakes. My dad, however, did not cut ice for personal use, but rather cut ice all winter as a part-time job. In today’s jargon, I guess you could say that was his side hustle, although back in the ’50s, it was a job, pure and simple.
“Here is a photo I have showing my dad cutting ice. I believe it was on Lake Phalen sometime around 1950.
“By the time I arrived, my family had a refrigerator, so we didn’t have to get ice for an icebox. I remember our refrigerator as a short, squat beast with a rounded top that probably had, at best, 2 or 3 cubic feet of interior refrigerated space. And the small freezer compartment had to be defrosted regularly, or it became one solid block of ice. Those were the days!
“Thanks, Happy Medium, for bringing back some of those childhood memories.”
Everyone’s a (candy bar) critic!
Dennis from Eagan reports: “West Bloomington’s Holiday (gas station) features two seasonal Salted Nut Roll flavors. The usual white nougat turned orange for a pumpkin-spice taste and tan for apple-pie.
“They are delicious and cheap ($1 each).”
Band Name of the Day:Pumpkin Spice and the Nut Rolls
Website of the Day: Ruby-Throated Hummingbird