lucky in love

A nice way to stay in touch with loved ones, and a convenient way to share my opinions without having everyone just walk away...wait a minute, where are you going? I wasn't finished..

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Breaking the rule

about not discussing religion or politics, Ross and I talked religion last night. We annoyed Janett and Kim a little bit. It started "innoccuously" enough when I asked how evolution led us to reinterpret original sin.
Ross is a biblical Christian, and isn't inclined to accept evolution as the story of creation. After a long discussion I came away with the image of Ross's bible as a beaker containing a quart of extra extra extra pure virgin olive oil, light golden, clear and complete.
I sometimes use a cliche about religion informing science as science informs religion, and that led me to imagine pouring a cup of clean water into the beaker. Of course the two liquids did not mix, and I next imagined putting the beaker on a blender, and obtaining an immulsion, pale and no longer transluscent. Not only had the oil lost its lovely appearance, it had also lost it's suitability for cooking or as a salad dressing. This imagery provided me with a deeper appreciation of literal adherence to the Bible.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

It's all about me

Some of you may remember the old "Lucky in Lover", feeling the need to alert, explain, and forewarn of things. Well, that's still me. So I took several months off, fearful of screed fatigue on the part of myself and the occasional visitor.
But now I'm on an adventure as I explained the other day, and have a lot of experiences to describe. I won't do that right here or now, but I was just reviewing my Facebook posting over the last week, and it's very first person-y.

Who would want to read a travelogue or journal if every paragraph started with "I"?

It's well known how I admire daughter Kim's writing style; informative, casual and a little elegant, seldom judgemental. I doubt that I can copy that style. But maybe I could attempt to write more observations of milieu and tempo, without pontificating about motivations or integrity.

In any case, Janett and I are very happy to be in Las Vegas, enjoying Kim and Ross's hospitality, and trying to shape a relationship with a slightly self-absorbed one year old. We'll see how the narrative develops.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Janett and I have moved

For any reader not acquainted with the recent history, this past winter we began to think of moving to Las Vegas. The first cause was daughter Kim, who we wanted to be closer to in case she ever got lonely. Also, Kim understands Janett pretty well and they can share ups and downs. If anything ever happened to me I think Kim could offer Janett a pretty firm arm to lean on. (which is not to slight Jason, Val, Nate, Stephy, or Noah since I myself am inclined to notoriously bad responses to Janett's worst moments. offering support like "Buck up, little camper" and advise like "Quit your whining."
Then there's the hot and dry thing which we hope will have beneficial effects on Janett's fibromyalgia symptoms. Also, after 45 years I'm still a white knuckle driver in January and February, and I slipped and fell on the ice three times last year. Luckily nothing broke, but maybe I was pressing my luck.
Then there was the condo lure. we picked out a really pretty one at a low price and had our offer accepted - Then got turned down for a mortgage. Kind of a "no credit history" thing since we've been living off a debit card for five or six years and paying cash for cars etc. We'll spend six months to a year establishing some good history and then apply again. Latest news is that prices could go even lower! Fortunately Kim was on the scene and able to find a nice little apartment for us for the mean time.
Early on in our deliberations we opted for the keep it simple approach to moving.
1 Trade in both our cars for a newer more reliable van. Taking one vehicle reduced the chance of mechanical mishap, reduced Janett's apprehensions about my falling asleep at the wheel and driving off a mountain, and riding together increased our enjoyment of the trip.
2. Move only what fit in the van. We figured we could buy furniture here cheaper than paying to move our old furniture, which might not have fit into a condo floor plan very well anyway. We were a little sad, of course, to give up things that had a family history. Janett was able to sell off several nice things for a little money, but also to insure a good home for those items. Oh, and we cheated a bit by parcel posting about 15 boxes of varying sizes to Kim.
I think our approach worked out well, but the proof will be in purchasing another car and furniture without spending a whole lot of money.

We're here in Las Vegas now, staying with Kim, Ross, and Remy until our apartment is cleaned up. (September 10th?). I downloaded skype so I could be in touch with the grandchildren left behind. Maybe I'll blog a little more often now to share how things are working out.

Saturday, July 09, 2011


For 4 months, the title of my last blog, " I'm a loser" has conveyed to any visitor a sense of self revulsion I don't really feel. So, I'm updating to correct that impression. But I think I feel more out of the game right now than a winner or a loser. The word i would have chosen last week to describe my sense of self would have been ephemeral, but with connotations only I may associate with the word.

I mean the dictionary says ephemeral means "intended for short duration" or something like that. I think of a dream-like state, insubstantial but with with faint luminescence, transient and haunting. Well, I guess the transient part fits, but the rest I must have added myself . Maybe that's the poet in me. Which reminds me of the quote from my father. "Ireland was a land of poets and pig farmers, and we weren't the poets" False modesty.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I'm such a loser...

I came to my blog site to connect to Kim's blog, and thought I should post a little something, which I did, commenting on my indifference to Khaddafi and Wisconsin's governor, noting this indifference is not my usual reaction to the news. More commonly, I am keeping a scorecard on the class war and can get pretty upset when I sense that the other guys are winning. I said I was more preoccupied of late with generating revenue at our little tax/bookkeeping service, and feeling thankful to Kim for provideing a supplement to Janett, which seems to be diminishing her fibroid myalgia symptoms without the crazy ups and downs (mostly downs) usually accompanying prescription medications.

I posted my comments, then viewed the blog, which is my customary method of proof-reading. and wondered at the intuit ads showing up next to my post. Oooops I'd taken the wrong turn at dashboard and posted to our business blog. Strangely, I found it impossible to copy the text from that blog to a post here. That raises some concern. Has Blogger changed something? Will I still be able to copy in articles of interest, some several pages in length, to my blog?

Love to all.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Good news from South Bend

Recruiting for the 2011 freshman class will continue for a couple of weeks before the day the young men must formally sign their letters of intent, and lock in their choices. It is not premature to comment, however, on progress to date, particularly as regards Notre Dame.
Irish fans are elated at the verbal commitment this weekend from Ishaq Williams, and the recommitment of Aaron Lynch. Both are top rated defensive ends. Stephon Tuitt is another top ranked defensive end previously committed, and still on board. All of these kids are ranked in the top 100 of their peers. Ben Councell, another defensive end verbally committed, may be upgraded to the top 100 on the basis of the very strong impression he made at a recent all-star game. Of these four defensive ends, Williams and Councell actually project to be most promising as playing outside linebacker positions. Louis Nix recruited last year at the nose tackle position, promises to round out the best defensive line in college football in the next few years. Of course, Manti Teo, a sophmore superstar in 2010, and Carlo Calabrese, the other leading tackler on the 2010 team, another sophmore, complete a "front seven" likely to be dominating and fun to watch. ND has also received commitments from 4 or 5 promising defensive backs adding needed depth in that category.
It's almost embarassing mention Carrico, Rabassa and Springman , defensive linemen or Jarret Grace, a promising linebacker, as afterthoughts. All of these four could compete for playing time, and one or two could be asked to switch to the offensive line, where they would be equally promising.
All of this defensive power recalls the Brian Kelly quote, that he could build an offense, but that he needed to recruit a defense. Well he certainly done that. Also interesting to a ND fan is the diversity of geographic origins. The six "top 100" recruits this year come from NY, PA, GA, FL, NM, and CA. Compare this to other powerhouses like Ohio State, Texas, LSU and Florida, all of whom's "top 100' recruits come from within their own state.
Less one suspect that this effusiveness over the defensive side of the line masks concerns regarding the offensive side, Coach Kelly has recruited a SC quarterback, a TX running back, an IL receiver and a potential slot receiver from CA, ideally suited to his "spread offense" scheme. Add a top rated offensive lineman from CT to the previously counted "top 100" offensive lineman from NM, and perhaps the best tight end in the country, the PA kid. Another offensive lineman (from IN) is the promising kid brother of a current starting offensive guard. Oh, and ND has signed up an excellent kicker (MI) and remains in the running for 5 star running back from NJ .
Obviously ND fans should be elated about the overall quality of this class, the extremely talented defensive players, making recruiting inroads into the deep south, and the "RKG" on offense to bring Kelly's plans to fruition. For this long time ND fan, the outreach to a national recruiting base is particularly edifying and elicits complements to what must be, start to finish, the hardest working staff in college ball.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


"Animals" I think was the first thing Owen said to me when I walked in his front door. "Animals, Owen?" "Yeah, come on," walking down the hall toward his room. "Wait, I want to say Hi to Malachy and your mommy and daddy." It was Mally who I needed most to speak to, It wasn't long ago that I was his playmate, sounding board, and unconditional love benefactor, and I never want him to think either of us have outgrown the relationship.

I think he understands. Last fall one night I was caring for him at our "old" apartment. We walked to the Burger King a couple blocks away, holding hands at the crossings and talking about continuing our game of City Cousin Country Cousin when we got home, kind of an unstructured role playing that encourages his imagination in developing scenarios dialogue and characters. "Poppo", he said, "You know you're my best friend." "Well, I used to think that I was, but then you met Calvin, and he was like your best friend, and then you met Ross, and he was your best friend, and now I was starting to think Frankie is your new best friend."

"Poppo, you know how I am...when I make a new friend for a while I have to treat them special so they know I like them." Very nice of him to say, but I know I'm not as energetic at play as his newer friends, and it's not just a social stratagem that makes him happier when one of the younger guys walk in than when I do. So the trade off works, he's OK with Owen currently monopolizing my time, and I'm OK with his asking "Calvin/Ross/Frankie, do you want to play?"

When I get to their house, though and before I leave, I complement him on his good looks, dancing skill, strength, helpfulness, or academic advancement and try to ask him one or two questions about recent experiences that I think maybe no one else has asked, because I always want to be special to him as he is to me.

Sure enough it was animals Owen was talking about, and soon after his brother and parents left we had brought ten of his stuffed creatures from his closet to the living room. I organized a game of hide and seek. The hippo buried her face in the corner of of the sofa cushion and counted til fifty while Owen and I helped the others hide. Then she searched high and low til she'd found all but two, whom Owen couldn't wait for her to find and excitedly retrieved and ran to her with.

Then he pulled five little cushions from the sofa and arranged them in a large square with one resting centered on top, and this he said was breakfast, and we seated the animals around the table, but were having a little trouble keeping them all sitting up, and before he got frustrated I suggested a trip to McDonalds, where incredibly he ordered apple slices instead of his old favorite french fries. After we shared the apple slices, he cleaned the table taking one article at a time, including the caramel dip which he hadn't sampled, to the waste paper basket, built into a a cabinet in a little alcove with the top a half foot over his head. After I lifted him the first time. he stood on tip toes and tossed the remaining items into the receptacle without being able to see the large round opening but knowing where it was.

Having still an hour to kill I suggested a trip to Elgin to see Mommo and the kitties. He was pleased with the idea, and in the car mentioned "treats" a couple of times, and I tried to remember what we had in the pantry that might please him. After greeting and hugging Mommo he went in search of the kitties and asked for treats again and I realized he'd been thinking of treats for the kitties, so I got out the yellow Temptation bag and had him reach in and grab a few for each cat in turn. Laboring under the misunderstanding, I'd already asked Janett about a treat for Owen and she'd suggested a some fragements of Aldi brand tostito chips and milk served in a double shot glass of mine that we've found to be just his size. He asked for seconds on the chips and we obliged, but he hadn't finished by the time we had to leave for Dundee to reunite him with his family, so we poured the remainders into a little plastic sandwich bag which he held happily onto on our return ride.

We beat his folks home. I invited him into the house a couple times, but he preferred we stay outside and walk across the snowy lawns; he must like the feel of snow crunching under his feet, and he was amused by my concern that his feet would get cold We made a big deal of occasionally stomping our feet on the sidewalk to get the snow off our shoes. Eventually I lured him into the house on the pretext of being sure the dog, Guiness, was alright.

Stephie Mark and Malachy got home soon, and after asking Mally how he'd enjoyed the movie and whether there were any scary parts, I was ready to say good-by. They were all going to lunch so I told Stephie about the chips, and she asked me how I'd done strapping Owen into the child seat, and I admitted I'd gotten the shoulder straps on and clipped together, but hadn't been able to hook up the lower strap. Poppo, like everyone else, isn't perfect.