Category Archives: just plain silliness

My Cup Crusade (and Her Bag Dream)


The building may or may not be more structurally sound than pictured. Depends on how much capital investment my gofundme account builds up.

When I grow up, I’m going to have a cafe called Cuppa. Everything will be served in cups. Cups and spoons, that will be my entire inventory of serving accouterments.

There will be no bowls, no plates, no saucers. Just cups. All of the menu items will be cup-friendly.


This is my dream: a world in which everything can be eaten with a spoon.

Also, cups and spoons are a lot more fun to wash than forks and giant plates. Who’s with me?

My all-of-the-sudden-she-is-five-years-old Marganit also has a dream for when she grows up. She told her preschool teacher on Monday a theme that she has been repeating to us for a while. “When I grow, I want to be a bagger,” she says. And, second to that: “a scientist.”

She’ll be a good bagger, too. She loves to put things in bags. Bags. Everywhere. Bags are her cups.

I should start gearing her up for her career field with specially designed Tetris tests. If my cup dream can’t come true, the least I can do is make my daughter’s bagger dream come true.

bag lady

A nighttime bag packed with must-haves for midnight awakenings: a little notepad, a bouncy ball, a stethoscope (real), a cheap plastic slinky, and some other junk that cannot be easily identified.


The Other Thing That Roosters Do

Bernie the Rooster doing what roosters do.

“MOM!” two kids came to the sliding glass door, screaming and out of breath. “MOM MOM MOM! The rooster, the rooster!”

“What? What is happening?”

Bernadette, age 7½, aghast, cried, “The rooster is ON TOP of the chicken. Mom, I mean he is on TOP of the chicken. Like ON TOP! What should we do?”

“YEAH! MOM! WHAT SHOULD WE DO?” echoed her little sister, Shirley.

“It’s okay,” I told them. “That’s what roosters are supposed to do. That’s how they make baby chickens.”

They both held puzzled looks for a moment, and then Bernadette checked in: “So he isn’t being bad?”

“Well, no. He’s not being bad.”

Bernadette continued, “So is he being good?”

Uhh. “He’s just being a chicken. That’s what chickens do.”

“Oh, okay.” Bernadette said. She closed the sliding glass door and she and Shirley ran back toward the yard. “GOOD JOB, ROOSTER! GOOD WORK, ROOSTER!” I heard them shouting. “GO BERNIE GO!”

Like Bernie really needed a cheer squad!

Big News

Dumples, offering to retrieve a fallen jigsaw puzzle piece from under the table: “I’ll get it because I’m the littlest!”

“Thanks!” I told her. “I would have a tough time getting under the table because I’m a big lady.”

“Mom!” she scolded me, hands on her hips, “You are NOT a lady.”


Chicken and Dumples’ Very Important Full House Viewing Rules

1. There is no talking while watching Full House. If you talk while watching Full House, we will watch it again. Until you don’t talk. Which means we will watch it again. And again. And again.


2. When the sappy lesson-learning music comes on, nobody say “aw.”


3. No laughing. It’s not funny and I don’t get the joke.


4. You sit on your side of the couch, I sit on my side of the couch, and never the twain shall meet.


5. Remember that one time when Michelle did that cute thing?


6. Be quiet. It’s starting. Quick. Get up and dance on your side of the sofa! Shout the names! DJ! Stephanie! Uncle Jesse! Joey! Danny! Aw Michelle!


7. See #1.


Ode to the 1996 Honda Civic with the Crayon Stains on the Back Seat and the Seat Belts that Always Get Stuck and the Broken Radio Dial

My car, my sweet car…has been making a low, rumbly sound when I accelerate. Over time, the noise has become noisier. I keep turning the radio up, but the rumbling is fiercely competitive. I think I need a new stereo.

My car, my sweet car…is white. It attracts these small flies. The flies do not bite and they do not buzz. They do make the children shriek and scream. I think I need a new paint job. Lime green or sunshine yellow or the color of whispers and congeniality.

My car, my sweet car…has a lazy right side. The electric window will not go down, no matter how many times I press the button. The right window will go down just fine, but will not slide back up if it comes in contact with any precipitation. I think I need a sunroof, so I can throw the toll bridge tokens out from the top.

My car, my sweet car…is strewn with half-finished art projects, CDs without cases, comic books, baby dolls, and pens. My God, the pens. If ever I owned a pen, it is now hidden in the crevices of the car seats and the cushions. And probably dried up. I think I need a live-in car maid. And some new pens.

My car, my sweet car…has a Minnesota-sized mosquito squished into the driver’s side windshield. It reminds me that I took its life without thinking, only with squishing. It was probably just looking for a way out. Or my blood. I think I need a better bug attitude.

My car, my sweet car…was my father’s before it was mine, and that is why I love it, with all its quirks and irks. Somewhere beneath the ever-increasing rumbling, my car is full of the memories of adolescence. My sweet car.

Add a puppy to The White Car and the car’s minor defects suddenly disappear.

Another Anniversary, Another ZZ Plant to Kill

The thirteenth anniversary present is “traditionally” stuff made of lace. My husband almost never wears lace, and his use of doilies is minimal at best, so I decided to go the less-traditional route and give him a houseplant.

I took the also non-traditional route of ordering the houseplant from a bamboo seller on Amazon.


The Amazon seller replied fairly quickly:


I did not call. I don’t know what I would say to the person or how the person would understand me.

But the plant did arrive, two days later, as (kind of) indicated in the email.

That’s when my husband Z told me that the plant ZZ is one I have bought for him two times in the past and has two times died. I would have thought a ZZ plant would be hardier than that.

I’ll try to remember that the fourteenth anniversary is ivory. Maybe I’ll get him a piano key or a walrus tusk or something useful for a change.


The Laundry Blues


Flutter By

Did you see a butterfly?

Where? Where?



Oh! I see it now.

The butterflies are in our hair!

Thank you, Mom. 🙂

There’s Nothing Like a Good Knish

My mom always used to tell us, in her most Brooklyn tone, that there is nothing like a good knish. Whatever that meant. Where I grew up, there was not a good knish or a bad knish anywhere in sight.

This morning our temple hosted a gourmet brunch. It is a chance for people in the community to sample Jewish delicacies that they likely have not encountered before, like gefilte fish and kugel.

This year, Erma and I attended as guests, so we could check out the scene and prepare to don aprons and help out with next year’s event.

We saw old friends and made new ones. And we ate so many fantastic foods, including cheese blintzes, kugel, challah, matzoh brei, and fruit compote. Not tried but looked at thoughtfully was pickled herring (served up by Fargo’s one and only Glenn Miiller!), gefilte fish, bagels with lox, and chopped liver.

It's Just Brunch

You know what the very best thing on the buffet line was? The potato knish. I would drive to Winnipeg for more of those, they were so delicious.

This just proves that Mom is always right. There’s nothing like a good knish.

Fear #292: Balloons


I also loathe those Pillsbury Doughboy canisters that pop when you least expect them to, even when you most expect them to.

The kids are playing with that #$*&%^* green balloon right now.

What we need is balloon legislation. Criminal background checks before owning or operating a balloon. Balloons should be licensed and owners should have to undergo intense training before being allowed to toss a balloon. No underage balloon blowing. Strict penalties for those who use balloons in abhorrent acts. Or else all balloons should be forced to be housed in a secret arsenal in Montana and left to slowly deflate.

Seriously, I am going to cower under the kitchen table until it’s spring. Which might be a long time coming.

Tax Day

Minnesota on April 15, 2013