Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Todd!

When I was a kid, I used to lay in bed every night and read until I went to sleep. I always thought that it must be great to be married and have someone there reading with you.

And now, I'm married to someone who reads just as much as I do -- and actually owns more books. We actually do go to bed every night, each with our own book, sometimes reading bits to each other. And it's just as great as I always imagined it would be.

Yesterday was mine and Todd's second anniversary. We spent it in a courtroom, waiting for a jury verdict in a trial he just finished. In an odd way, it was almost romantic.

I met Todd in court; he was already a prosecutor, and I was a public defender. I suppose we were star-crossed. We can both trace the beginning of the beginning of our relationship to one long day in court, waiting for a sentencing hearing on the last case we ever did as opponents. Ironically, it was Valentine's Day, and I was dressed all in black in solidarity with all single women.

I knew then that I liked him a lot, that he made me laugh, that he was the smartest person I had ever met -- and that he was seriously hot.

I still believe all those things, and more. Marrying Todd was, without a doubt, the "rightest" thing I have ever done. It has been so much fun that I'd do it all over again, even without the cake, and the DJ, and the big guest list. Just the necessities -- me, and him.

Sweetie, you're the best!

Monday, October 22, 2007

J.K. Rowling, You're the Bomb!

So, all you Harry Potter fans out there. In case you haven't heard the news, it seems that Dumbledore is gay. Yep, straight from J.K. herself.

As I should have expected, this has raised the proverbial shit storm among all the Harry nay-sayers out there. You know the types -- the ones who said that the books promoted all sorts of horrible things, from witchcraft to disobeying one's teachers.

Then there are those who are mad because Dumbledore wasn't "outed" earlier.

I admit, I sat up and took notice when I read this news story, too, but for an entirely different reason.

My reason?


Seriously, I know that she's not the most "polished" writer, and her plots have some holes, and there was a good bit of "deus ex machina" in that last book. But the way she has built up such a complete world in her head, the way she KNOWS that Dumbledore is gay because, well, because he just IS and there's no way around it?

That is quite impressive to me. And it makes me wonder just how much there is in her magical little world that we'll never know; answers to questions that we'll never think to ask. It makes me want to strap her down and MAKE her write more books about Harry. And Ginny. And Snape. And yes, about Dumbledore.

I'm a bit ashamed to say that I had never really considered Dumbledore's sexuality, but learning that he's gay seems right to me. Poor Dumbledore, it's a shame he couldn't have had a wonderful counterpart to fall in love with -- a Grindelwald type, without the bothersome evilness.

Dear Lord, I am SUCH a geek. Must try to hide that better in my next post.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Last-Minute Friday Fripperies

Okay, I know I just posted (see below), but this is the funniest thing I have seen in the longest.

Click here!

Click on the link, then click to play the video. You will NOT be sorry.

Back to the Dark Ages

Last night, I was on my way out to a church meeting when the tornado sirens started. Mind you, I didn't realize that we even had tornado sirens, but I figured nothing good could come of a noise that loud, so I turned right around and went back inside.

I sat on the couch, watching the various Super Duper Storm Doppler Spotter Tornado Coverages on TV, and right about when they said the storm would be coming through my neighborhood, it did. It lasted for about 10 minutes, and that was it. Just as I was thinking, "That's ALL?", the power went out.

And stayed out.

My immediate thought was, "I must check the internet to see how the storm is." I pulled out the laptop, and was TOTALLY befuddled when the wireless connection wouldn't, well . . . connect. I remained befuddled until Todd came home and I asked him about why the darn wireless wouldn't work.

"What do you think the wireless IS, Kara?" he asked.

"I don't know," I said, waving my hands vaguely in the air above my head, "it's just WIRELESS. You know, like IN THE AIR SOMEWHERE."

Turns out that is not the case. In fact, the wireless is not wireless at all. Or, actually, I guess it is wireless, but it is not plugless, because, according to Todd, it originates from a plug RIGHT THERE IN THE WALL.

Huh. Who knew?

And so it went. I spent the remaining evening thinking of all the things I would do since there was no electricity:

Laundry? Darn.

Catch up on Blockbuster movies? Drat.

Bake cookies! Not so much.

It seems the only thing you can do without power is read a book with a flashlight stuck under your chin. For hours at a time. And send text messages to your teenage niece. (The reading by flashlight thing? Sure to give you a headache. Now I see why Ma and Pa were always admonishing Mary Ingalls against reading too much by candlelight. Yes, I know that in real life she went blind from scarlet fever, but YOU know that on the show it was totally from reading too much by candlelight.)

I have to say, I felt a bit bedraggled as I slunk into the courthouse this morning, with no makeup and sopping wet hair. I think it's totally NOT FAIR that I have to go through the whole dadgummed courthouse to get to my office, where, luckily, there was a working plug for the ol' hairdryer.

On the bright side, though, I think a complete lack of anything remotely interesting to do in one's dark house means that one gets to go for dinner and a movie after work.

Friday, October 12, 2007

So THAT's What It's Like to Finish Something

Okay, as promised yesterday, I give you . . .

The Ultra-Ugly, Loud and Obnoxious Granny Shawl!

I am "sort of" pleased with the shawl. I like that I made it up entirely, all by myself. Yes, I know granny squares have been done before, but I really "winged it" on the construction.

I also really liked how all the colors looked together. I was really trying to put squares together from my stash with colors that I thought would look hideous next to one another, but was often surprised by how interesting some of them came out.

Having said all that, I think I'm going to rip the thing out. Not the squares themselves, just the sewing them together part. When I tried it on, the look I got was less Retro Hippy Girl and more Actual Granny. When Todd tried to figure out how to use it for a Halloween costume, I decided it needed some alterations.

I'm thinking that I will replace the white seaming and border with black, use a softer yarn for that to give it better drape, and do a slightly more traditional shaping -- more triangle, but not exactly triangle. Hopefully I'll accomplish that this weekend and can post an update next week.

In literary news, (and continuing with the "finishing" theme of this post) I absolutely had to force myself to finish the book I've been reading, A Thread of Grace. For those of you who have listened to my endless lectures on how The Sparrow is The World's Best Book Ever and I Do Mean Ever, this was by the same author, and boy, did she let me down.

This one was not about interplanetary Jesuit travel, but about how Italians worked to hide Jews from the Nazis during World War II. It took me about 300 pages to get the characters straight and actually care about any of them, and by page 310, most of them were dead, dying, or being tortured. Uplifting stuff, that.

And nary an alien or spaceship in sight. Bummer.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

If You Don't Work Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, does that mean Thursday Becomes Monday?

Okay, so we had a bit of a blog hiatus, there. "Around the Subject"'s been suffering from a combination of having nothing terribly exciting to say, and a few much-needed days off of work and away from the computer.

Last weekend my mom was inducted into the Eminence High School Hall of Fame, which gave me an excuse to spend some time with her and do some scary past-revisiting. On Friday, we went to the school football game. Boy howdy, was that something.

First of all, my alma mater is now playing 8-man football. How embarassing.

Second, the band is suffering from a complete lack of ANYONE WHO HAS ANY SENSE OF RHYTHM. I mean, AT ALL. Sheesh -- my predominantly white, Presbyterian churh orchestra can keep a better beat.

Third, my former stepson plays bass clarinet in said band, and was all decked out with a long, scraggly ponytail, mismatched knee socks, and chains hanging from the pocket of his denim man-pris. I felt aged, yet satisfyingly vindicated that all my worst fears about him have come true. (Sometimes, I am a good judge of character. I predicted the whole Britney debacle years ago.)

At the big induction banquet on Saturday, I got to show Todd around my old school, which does indeed seem much smaller than when I was a student there. He pretended to be most impressed by my picture with the cheerleading squad in the trophy case, although he may have been a bit shocked at just how bad my hair was back then. I know I was.

It's always very impressive to see and hear how much my mom has influenced so many people that have come through that school system. She can remember something about every one, and each one believes he was her favorite. That's a good quality in a teacher, if you ask me.

[I deleted yesterday's Public Service Announcement. Upon further reflection, it was more hateful than funny. So . . . move along, nothing to see here.)

Tune in tomorrow -- I plan to have an actual, live, finished craft project on display.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Transvestites and Family and Diving, Oh, My!

I really don't want this blog to become just a diary of what I do, day in and day out (because that would be super dull, for one thing), but I had such a good weekend that it deserves a recounting -- at least of the highlights.

On Friday, Todd and I went to see Hedwig and the Angry Inch at Actors Theatre. Oh. My. God. It was funny and loud and obnoxious and sweet and just fantastic all the way around. There was a good mix of people there, some who were obviously there because they were season ticket-holders, and some die-hard Hedwig fans, like me. We even ran into an attorney we know, who looked a bit shell-shocked, but said he thought he could "get used to" the music. I tell you what, it was a good thing we went at the end of the run, because I would have wanted to go back. As it is, I'm going to have to re-rent the movie soon.

Saturday my dad had a family reunion at the farm -- a bit odd, as this was HIS family, as in, people I've never really met before (yes, we have some strange family dynamics, but who doesn't?) -- but I think it made him really happy to have everyone there, so it was nice. And between my niece and I, we are SO close to getting him to buy horses.

And yesterday, we finally -- FINALLY -- were able to go scuba diving for the first time since we were certified well over a year ago. We went to a quarry nearby in Oldham County which is used as a dive training center mostly, with some fun stuff sunk in the water. We saw a few boats, a gargoyle, a stone rooster, and a realty sign -- just ordinary stuff which nonetheless seems surreal when underwater.

We did have some problems. Todd continues to have difficulties with his ears, and my buoyoancy is just OUT OF CONTROL (it's the peril of being very "floaty"). At one point, I popped up to the surface and just COULD NOT get myself back down. I flipped over and tried to kick my way down, but all that happened was I hung there for what seemed like forever, getting out of breath while my feet (in their flippers) kicked around wildly above the surface. (I would love to see what that looked like from shore.) Todd kept grabbing me and trying to pull me back down, but when he would let go, I'd pop back up on top. Kind of like an aquatic version of Weebles Wobbling But Not Falling Down.

Anyway, we were underwater and actually breathed air out of a tank, so in my book, the excursion was an unqualified success. I mean, the last time we tried to dive, my dive equipment only got wet because I dropped it in the water accidentally. Did I ever tell you that story? You know, the one about the sociopath middle-schooler with the fishing pole who swore she was just going to "sit right here" and watch the fish but not -- oh, definitely not -- throw her hook in on us?

No? Well, let's just say that compared to that trip, you can call this one a success.