Musings and Amusings

If we were having coffee, I’d confess I’m a little more gripe-y in person than I am on my blog, so I’d start our conversation by whining that whoever invented the leaf blower (which I might point out is used against all laws of nature to blow cut grass from one side of the street to the other and to blow dirt out of the driveway into the curb gutter after which the wind blows it right back into the driveway) should be strung up by his thumbs and forced to listen to that deafening, polluting noise until his ears fall off.

If I was writing about it on my blog instead of bitching to you in person, I’d write it in a more positive tone, something like this:

I will gladly give my  virginity, first born, chocolate stash,‘favorite books’ collection to the genius who invents a SILENT MOTOR that can power everything from leaf blowers to lawn mowers to motorcycles to Budget Rent-a-Trucks to air conditioning compressors.

For the love of God, am I the ONLY person who expects motor-free time outdoors in the summer?

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest …

June 2015 Tangle

I’d tell you that Sparks and Raqi were done with school yesterday, and Raqi’s 9th birthday is this weekend – nine years of idyllic love for my Bella Boo-ski Baby Cakes. I like nicknames. I can’t tell you all of Sparks’ because he uses them in his video games passwords. I’d tell you, but then he’d surely terminate you.

Raqi asked us to come stay overnight on her birthday (Awww) and she wants to go to Golden Corral for dinner because, you know, … chocolate fountain!

Raqi's Birthday Card

Raqi’s Birthday Card

We’ve got plans for a family week at a very special place in July (more on that later), and I want to take them to Arapahoe Park (horse races where they let you wander the stables) and trek north to Fort Collins to visit stables housing some of the Budweiser Clydesdales. Plus we’ve got Sparks’ golf camp and baseball. Time at the pool – well, let’s just say each summer we discover a new place to splash.

Obstacle Course - Field Day Plan B 'cuz of Storms

Obstacle Course – Field Day Plan B ‘cuz of Storms

We must pack it all in quickly because their next school session begins the first week in August!

Tower Competition - Field Day Plan B 'cuz of Thunderstorms

Tower Competition – Field Day Plan B ‘cuz of Thunderstorms

Hub and I are enjoying a series on the Smithsonian Channel titled ‘Aerial America’ – an aerial history/travelogue of each of the 50 states. So far we’ve visited Minnesota, New Jersey, Maine, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri and South Carolina. All I have to say is after each hour we look at each other and chime, “I wanna live there!”

OK, maybe not live there, but definitely visit or re-visit what we’ve missed. (and an aside to Joey – Indianapolis was highlighted in a very favorable light, not least because you live there!).

The music on Aerial America is TOO LOUD. I had to turn on ‘closed caption’ because the music drowns out the narrator even for the not-hard-of-hearing.

But that’s a bitch best left for the Love-Hate Challenge.

We are truly blessed to live in such a vastly rich, diverse country.

I am delighted and grateful  to have each of you in my life.

If you don’t hear from me next week, well … death by chocolate fountain isn’t a bad way to go!


Comments on: "Summertime!! Iced Coffee? Arnie Palmer? Fruit Smoothie?" (72)

  1. I do use a leaf blower, my wife finally let me buy one two years ago. I am very careful to use it for its intended purpose and not for things I could do with a broom. Sounds like you have a great summer to look forward to, I’m envious of your ability to plan. One note, from the air it might look good, but I’m not sure you want to live in Jersey…just sayin.

    • What’s wrong with a good old-fashioned rake? I know, you’re gonna say your acreage is too big. You youngsters … I used to rake a mile in the snow … Wait, different tale. 😀

      You’re right about Jersey (shh) altho’ i was amazed to find such beautiful terrain and trees. i thought it was all turnpike, airport and Atlantic City taffy. Eith corrupt politicians as a bonus.

      Enjoy your weekend, Dan.

      • She only let me buy it when I had to clear leaves out from under our porch. It was either leaf blower or crawl in with the spiders. I am careful not to abuse the privilege lest she take it away. Have a good weekend Sammy.

      • I like your wife more every time I hear about her 😉 you definitely get a pass on spider safety.

      • Oh, and my acreage is tiny. Fractional to be exact.

  2. Death by chocolate fountain is surely the best way to go! Happy Birthday to Raqi, by the way – it’s so sweet that she wants you to stay over for her birthday! 🙂

    I’m totally with you on the leaf blowers, they’re really unnecessary and loud and just dreadful. I would definitely add my chocolate stash to yours if it meant the invention of silent motors. We get woken up sometimes in the middle of the night by people revving their cars outside – always some obnoxious ferrari or some other such like. GRRR!!!!

    • I didn’t want to say it out loud so keep this hidden under your peacock feathers, but WHAT IS IT ABOUT MEN AND LOUD MOTORS AND MUSIC AND REVVING ENGINES??

      • Consider the space under my peacock feathers as a bitching safe zone 😉

        And I am SOOO with you!!! Especially when they revv the engine with the music blaring, but there’s traffic up ahead so they’re not going anywhere — just making noise. WHY????

        Next time we have a coffee, you and I should rewrite the driving laws, and ban all revving of engines. Oh and I just realised the solution to silent motors: electric cars! 🙂

      • LOL Yes to everything you said. I know there are electric motors for lawn mowers but they must be more expensive. In all seriousness, I truly do not understand why sound pollution is ignored by all the environmentalists when its impact affects us every single day. There are rallies against all kinds of pollution except noise 😕. I know, I could begin the cause if I wasn’t such a flake.

      • So true. I guess it’s because it doesn’t make for a shocking headline — which is a bit cynical but I think that has a lot with causes being picked up and becoming big. Sound pollution is so exhausting too, as you say it really impacts us every day. I remember the first time we left Hong Kong to go back to the UK, the silent actually felt like thick velvet — it was such a shock compared to the noise of HK. And such a relief, too!

      • Celine, that’s how I feel when we eat in (one of the few) restaurants that aren’t blaring music. You are pleasantly surrounded by quiet conversation and the tinkle of forks and knives. I love it. It’s one of the things I enjoyed most about Europe.

      • Oh yes, we had that in the US once where we were there, the music was so loud, that I made a comment about feeling like we were eating in a night club. Then I realised that I wasn’t even 30 yet and being in a nightclub should be something that I enjoy (I don’t), and clearly I’m getting old before my time.
        But I love silence. I thought of you yesterday actually as I’m back in the South of France to visit my Bon-Papa (he of all the A to Z childhood stories) and it was so quiet, there wasn’t a sound other than the birds — and certainly no leaf blowers. It was heaven!

      • What a lovely place to call home! I’m glad you could visit him💖

  3. Let me know how that trading for a silent motor turns out – here in So. FL. our grass gets cuts constantly!!!!

    • No kidding. I wish we had community agreement on one quiet day a week! Just as one neighbor mercifully ends, another revs up. How about some co-ordination 😊

  4. “Hub and I are enjoying a series on the Smithsonian Channel titled ‘Aerial America’ – an aerial history/travelogue of each of the 50 states. So far we’ve visited Minnesota…”

    I enjoyed the series too but didn’t catch the episode on Minnesota. Betchya they filmed it in summer. 🙂

  5. Chocolate fountain? Did someone say chocolate fountain?

    Agree about the leaf blowers. And the lawn mowers at 7:30 am on a Saturday morning. I try to be kind and tell myself the poor soul probably has to work that day and is just getting their work done when they can. But I still grumble…

    • Yes, i’d like to stick my head under that chocolate flow ( when Raqi’s not watching!)

      I try to be charitable in my thinking, too, but after the third or fourth neighbor in a row on both Saturday and Sunday revs up, I think we need a Designated Quiet Day.

    • I forgot to tell you, I dreamed about you last night. I was visiting you, and your house had a very convoluted layout and I was trying to find the bathroom from your ‘down there on the left’ directions but all I kept walking through was master bedroom, followed by two toddler rooms with really cute toilets that were way too tiny and low for me 😘. We were carrying on a conversation the whole time but you were still back in the kitchen.

      Very ‘alice in wonderland’ feeling when I woke up. (But really I probably just had to pee!)

  6. Oh how I appreciate and recognize myself in your opening lines about being more gripe-y off stage. Or should I say, off page.

    Leaf blowers should have been banned outright. I’m sorry, but if you feel compelled to rake leaves in the first place, grab the rake and engage with your work and get some exercise! … she ranted, as she conveniently “leaves” out the part that she doesn’t bother raking leaves as they seem to take care of themselves quite nicely thank you.

    One of our favourite spots to visit has high hills and twisty-turn-y roads and trees and babbling streams and green and lush and… LOUD! I feel sorry for the residents and the visitors who live or travel to take in the beauty and the serenity. The place is anything but serene when the motorcycles roar and rumble by. And roar they do, from dawn to dusk throughout the summer. There outta be a law.

    I look forward to the love/hate challenge!

    • Yeah, you and I would have to make a pact on 15 minutes of gripe-y then on to the fun stuff when we get together. That is another change I have a hard time swallowing – the encroachment of human sound into nature – voices, music, motors, zip lines, alpine slides. The less active we’ve become, the more we’ve taken nature out of the equation.

      You’ll see one accomodation to above in Love-Hate on Sunday 😍

  7. My favourite time to hear the neighbours’ lawnmower? Why at suppertime on a Sunday ~ make that a beautiful Sunday so you can eat outside on your balcony/terrace/lawn. Instead of the chirp of birds in the background you have a nice loud, while we’re at it, gasoline-powered machine drowning out your conversation! Hubs had a leaf-blower. Hubs, being no longer here will not miss it when it goes out at the next garage sale… 😉

    • There’s simply no good time to start up those summer motors!! I want open windows and chirping birds. Lawn mowers were bad dnough but those leaf blowers are an abomination from Hell. It’s enough to drive a girl to the chocolate fountain!!

  8. cardamone5 said:

    Sounds like my death of choice too! Enjoy.

  9. Thank you, thank you, thank you for addressing one of my pet peeves!! As if the noise isn’t bad enough, why oh why do they think it’s ok to blow their leaves, grass clippings, … or in the winter, snow …. into the middle of the road?!!!!

    …. and why oh why does grass need to be cut at dinnertime? I really don’t need the stench of a gas motor – not to mention the noise – while I’m trying to eat dinner.

    Now it’s time for me to go find a chocolate fountain …

  10. Death by chocolate fountain sounds far better than being blown to bits by a leaf blower. 🙂 You made me laugh out loud. Wishing you a quiet weekend.

  11. I shall write a post about the motorized lawn tools today. You have inspired me!
    I don’t think we get the Smithsonian Channel. I’ve never heard of it and now I’m sad. I’m one of those people who’d like to spend a week in the Smithsonian (preferably for free, hahaha!)
    Thank you for the aside 🙂 Of course Indianapolis is shown favorably! It’s verdant, we have a river and a big creek and two reservoirs and groovy architecture and incredible art and a zoo and the world’s largest children’s museum and corn and basketball and racin and did I mention how green it is? I’m sure they flew over my back 40 and the narrator lamented about how pitiful it is that I have 1.3 acres and the city won’t allow me a pair of goats…
    Happy birthday to Raqi! Whoosh, time flies!

    • Oh good. I need a full-blown motor rant and I like when you do the heavy lifting 😘

      I was surprised at how Indianapolis has grown and some of the unusual architecture. In Michigan we used to kind of sniff derisively about Indiana but all we ever thought of was those overly-competitive fighting Irish and the drive through armpit stinky Gary, IN to get to Chicago.

      • I think perhaps every state teases the one below it. We sure do give Kentucky a hard time. Well I don’t, because I think Kentucky is beautiful, but people do.
        Gary is really icky, isn’t it? I still go through it to get to Chicago, and it’s always icky. Maybe there’s a secretly good part we can’t see from the interstate…

      • Well the narratir said Gary is worse than ever!! Sadly since manufacturing has left, they showed all kinds of buildings, including beautiful churches, being left to decay – windiws broken, roifs falling in. It’s appalling. Sooner ir later Chicago growth and urban renewal might cross the border and gentrify the area.

        Such proud (though stinky) manufacturing centers of our past – a part of middle-class opportunity lost forever.

      • You took the words out of my mouth. Remember when people had factory jobs and could afford to live?!? You know Danville, Illinois is becoming just like Gary. You can buy enormous, architecturally interesting houses there for the price of a small car. The schools are crap, the city’s drug-infested and there’s nowhere to work, for the same reason.

      • Have written and deleted two responses. Raging about what’s going wrong in our economy and politics is useless. On to more positive thoughts …

      • Well, I’da read them, but onto positive is never a bad choice.

  12. Sounds like a wonderful summer, hope you all have fun! I must confess to wanting to drag people off their noisey bikes, lol. I’m also envious of a Smithsonian Channel….oooh I would love that! Hope you’re well x

  13. […] to Sammy’s complaints about the sounds of motorized lawn equipment, I thought I’d share with you the madness that […]

  14. I so agree with you about leaf blowers. Very obnoxious. I use a rake and enjoy the exercise and fresh air and quiet. Happy Birthday to Raqi! Have a wonderful time at the Golden Corral! I want to go there sometime and see that fountain of chocolate. In fact, I would like to have a fountain of chocolate! Love your drawings!

  15. Have an absolute blast with the babykins. You are so blessed to have them in your life! And a chocolate fountain, wow! I wonder if they have that around here. Just idly wondering, you understand. As to leaf blowers, it’s also the blowing itself. I have to run and throw myself under the hummingbird nest to keep the guys who come do our lawn from blowing at the nest! Or at least, I feel as if I have to. What if they forget she’s up there? And then there is the door I have that has a gap underneath it that can’t be fixed. They blow all the dirt and leaves into my kitchen!!!
    I’d love to have a whinefest with you. I’ll have the tea and chocolate. Or wine and chocolate.

    • Those blowers ! I didn’t think past my own ears to how they terrify the birds!!

      We can wine and whine and munch chocolate. And whine :-). But then I want to see the hummingbirds!!

  16. I wasn’t aware of the fly over series. Not sure if we get the Smithsonian channel, but I’ll check. I hope you enjoy your flight over California… wave when you get to San Diego.

    I too hate leaf blowers, but our landscape guy had a nifty little electric one that sounded about as loud as a hair dryer. I thought it could come in handy for a few specific jobs. Please don’t hate me.

    • I’ll wave at you unless you’re out there making noise with your leaf blower 😎😂🌺🇺🇸

      (i thought there was a quieter electric one but apparantly they haven’t caught on. Feel free to start a trend!)

  17. I TOTALLY agree with you about the leaf blowers…and the mowers, quads, motorbikes, what-have-you, that ruin a perfectly good spring afternoon with incessant noise! Sounds like you have some great adventures lined up for the summer so you can get away from it all. Enjoy!!! (And death-by-chocolate? Definitely the way to go, lol!)

  18. Enjoyed catching up with you, and love your artwork! Beautiful!

  19. My husband bought a leaf blower some years ago when we had a very large garden – but even he agreed that it was simply too noisy. Who knows where it is now. Do TV stations deliberately UP the volume with ads? Seems so – and so irritating. We also have punks who destroy their ears with revved up cars and boom boom music ….

    The cards are lovely Sammy D … hope you’re having a terrific weekend with the children!

    • Thank you, Susan!

      Your husband sounds like a wise man, knowing when to ditch the leaf blower 😊

      As for commercials, supposedly a law was passed several years ago thst commercials couldn’t be above a certain sound level. For about a year, everyone complied but – with no one watching the henhouse – they have slowly turned up the volume again without any repercussions.

      My bigger complaint is the loud music and constant heavy drumbeats during the shows. Honestly we cannot hear the actors speak their lines. Do we really need drums pounding throughout dramas to clue is in that we’re watching (gasp) drama?

      Why can’t one of those confoundingly complicated remote buttons provide a way to turn off the background noise? Am I right? Uh huh 😉🍷💖

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