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Monday, July 31, 2017


The first man gets the oyster. The second man gets the shell.
~ Andrew Carnegie
- - - - -

And the third man gets angry because the second man pushed him down.

Sunday, July 30, 2017


I can wear a hat or take it off, but either way it's a conversation piece.
~ Hedda Hopper
- - - - -

I think conversations are good things. To talk and then listen and then talk based on what you listened to. That's maybe why some electronic communications aren't so good. You talk, but you don't really have to listen to anyone else. Unfortunately, it seems like a lot of people are really good at that talking without listening part. SAD.

On a very loosely related note, a good name for a book would be Hedda Hopper's Hats.

Saturday, July 29, 2017


Living in a tower, however secure it may feel, is hardly a social attribute.
~ Dirk Bogarde
- - - - -

A lot of people think Rapunzel was antisocial because she lived in a tower.

1. No. She was held prisoner in a tower. She didn't choose to live there of her own accord.
2. She was antisocial because her name was Rapunzel and the other kids made fun of her.

Friday, July 28, 2017


If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking. Angels whisper to a man when he goes for a walk.
~ Raymond Inmon
- - - - -

Just watch where you're going and try not to knock over a bunch of motorcycles while you're walking because Devil's Angels whisper to a man when that happens. And it's not good words or creative ideas. Also, it's probably not whispering.

Thursday, July 27, 2017


If they don't give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.
~ Shirley Chisholm
- - - - -

A seat at the table of change is rarely an easy chair. A folding chair is better because you take it with you to the next place where you need to do the work.

Just be careful when you fold it up you don't pinch your finger. Been there, done that. Squawking like a little baby because you hurt yourself has an impact on the degree to which you are able to create change.

Or so I've heard.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


I don't have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness - it's right in front of me if I'm paying attention and practicing gratitude.
~ Brene Brown
- - - - -

A lot of people say they are blessed when something good happens. Or they use #blessed when they share that something good has happened for them.

Does that mean the rest of us are cursed if that didn't happen to us?

Tuesday, July 25, 2017


I am afraid we must make the world honest before we can honestly say to our children that honesty is the best policy.
~ George Bernard Shaw
- - - - -

I agree with that quote.

A kid gets that a pork sandwich is pig. 

A kid is also outraged when we lie and call a pig sandwich a pork sandwich.

But he's not outraged for long because mmmmmmm.... Pig!

Monday, July 24, 2017


A good farmer is nothing more or less than a handyman with a good sense of humus.
~ E. B. White
- - - - -

Leslie is picky about the farmer's markets she goes to. One time I asked her if she wanted to go to a particular farmer's market with me and she said no. When I asked why, she responded - "I don't need to go to a farmer's market where a person can buy a monogrammed pie for their dog."

She is so wise.

Sunday, July 23, 2017


Lite Brite making things with light.
What a sight, making things with Lite Brite.
~ Lite Brite Commercial (1960s-1970s)
- - - - -

Cyrill was so excited to use his new Lite Brite. He had wanted it for so long and had saved and saved and almost had enough money. His parents were proud of his hard work and agreed to make up the additional funds so her could purchase his new Lite Brite.

He ran home from the toy store with the prize in his arms. He fell on a crack in the sidewalk and squashed a corner of the box and skinned his knee. He was panicked and finished the dash home. He opened the box as blood ran down his pale skinny shin. Thankfully, the toy was intact.

Sadly, he didn't have a lightbulb, but then he got an idea (which is interesting since the symbol for an idea is a lightbulb above one's head). He went to his room and took the lightbulb from his bedside lamp. He wouldn't be able to finish reading Encyclopedia Brown and the Case of the Midnight Visitor at bedtime, but it was worth the sacrifice.

He scrambled back to the living room, sprawled out on his stomach on the thick, green, shag carpeting on the floor and after putting in the lightbulb, selecting "House & Light"and tearing the edges of the paper as he fastened it to the plastic screen, he created his image. He smiled to himself and thought, "It really DOES look like a house and light!"

His parents looked on proudly and decided to take Cyrill out for dinner and ice cream to celebrate. 

While they were gone, the Lite Brite caught on fire and burned down their house.

The moral of the story is "What a sight, making things with Lite Brite" has multiple meanings. 

Saturday, July 22, 2017


We had two grand antique professors who had been teaching at Lombard since before I was born.
~ Carl Sandburg
- - - - -

I think Carl meant that as a compliment, but not sure if it was taken as one.

Friday, July 21, 2017


To reach a port we must set sail --
Sail, not tie at anchor
Sail, not drift.
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt
- - - - -

If I were a boat, I think a sailboat would be a nice kind of boat to be. 
I wouldn't be a submarine.
I wouldn't be a rowboat.
I wouldn't be a tugboat.

Unless it was because this poem is so cute that it sort of tugs at your heartstrings.


I'd be a tugboat.

Thursday, July 20, 2017


I'm sitting' on the dock of the bay
Watching the tide roll away
Ooo, I'm just sitting' on the dock of the bay
Wastin' time
~ Otis Redding
- - - - -

This song is a good song. "The bay" is just the right choice of this song.

Sitting on the dock of a pond
Watching the tide quickly abscond...

Sitting on the dock of a puddle
Watching for little ducky puddle...

Sitting on the dock of a lake
Watching the boat making a wake...

Sitting on the dock of the ocean
Watching the waves making motion...

See how those other versions suck?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017


Then I grew up and the beauty of succulent illusions fell away from me.
~ F. Scott Fitzgerald
- - - - -

This quote makes me sad for F. Scott Fitzgerald. For me the opposite has been true. I grew up (still working on it) and the beauty of succulent illusions has been revealed to me.

And I'm not sure they're illusions.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


The dog is the god of frolic.
~ Henry Ward Beecher
- - - -

Today we are heading to Canada. It's the first time we will go there without Bill's wonderful dog Sadie. I'm sure we will think of her and miss her a lot this year. I'm not sure who will stnd at the door waiting for Bill to get back from playing tennis. I'm not sure who will leap into the bay to save Leslie when she goes swimming and doesn't need saving. I'm not sure who will help Suzanne in the kitchen in case she accidentally drops something while she's cooking dinner.

Actually, I'm sure Sadie will still be doing all those things. I just wish we could see her doing those things. 

Monday, July 17, 2017


Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things 
which escape those who dream only by night.
~ Edgar Allan Poe
- - - - -

Why are these called fire escapes instead of flood escapes? Couldn't you also use the stairs to go up higher to get away from the flood? Or a cow / horse escape if you have cows and horses on your roof since those animals can't really go down stairs.

Sunday, July 16, 2017


When I was young I found out the big toe always ends up making a hole in a sock. So I stopped wearing socks.
~ Albert Einstein
- - - - -

I think if someone knocked my socks off I would be quite upset with them. Unless said socks were on fire. Then - thanks for that.

Saturday, July 15, 2017


All our sweetest hours fly fastest.
~ Virgil
- - - - -

"Why are they called flyswatters instead of fly smashers and gut spillers," you ask?


Friday, July 14, 2017


We take care of our health, we lay up money, we make our roof tight and our clothing sufficient, but who provides wisely that he shall not be wanting the best property of all -- friends. 
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
- - - - -

As we were leaving our house one day...

Leslie: (looking at old man who was on the neighbor's roof - no, not Santa. Smart aleck.) I saw him on the roof earlier. He's too old to be on that roof.

Me: Well, he's on the ground power washing something now. I hope he's not power washing the hell out of her plants.

Leslie: or her dog.

Thursday, July 13, 2017


What good is speed if the brain has oozed out on the way?
~ St. Jerome
- - - - -

The other day I was walking and listening to a podcast. The host's voice was weird. She had a very non-podcast rhythm. It's like she was super-nervous or in a huge hurry.

Then I realized that you can set the speed to 1 1/2 times normal speed. 

Then I realized I HAD set the speed to 1 1/2 times normal speed.

Ultimately, what I learned is that I don't need life to go faster than it is. I'm annoyed enough with people at regular speed. I get super-annoyed with them at 1 1/2 times normal speed.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017


I love sleep. My life has a tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know?
~ Ernest Hemingway
- - - - -

It is 345 a.m. as I am writing this. I should be in bed asleep, but I am not. I am awake. I am flying to Maine to see my brother later this morning. Am I not sleeping because I am excited? Maybe. I don't know why I can't sleep.

If I AM awake because I'm excited - what a harsh irony since by the time I get there I will be too tired to enjoy spending time with him.

Luckily, I am such a ray of sunshine that he will enjoy my presence no matter what. Plus, it's not like I haven't fallen asleep during our visits before. 

Is it because he is boring? I wouldn't say that. Not because it's untrue -- I just wouldn't say that.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017


The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.
~ Voltaire
- - - - -

When I have an upset stomach I think, "I should probably eat something that horses eat or something made from horses. I think that will settle my stomach." 

Thanks, Dr. Bell!

Monday, July 10, 2017


Big wheel keep on turning
Proud Mary keep on burning.
And we're rolling. Rolling. Rolling on the river.
~ John Fogerty
- - - - -

John Fogerty wrote that song the day he got his discharge papers from the Army. I guess that means that the first line could have been, "Left a good job in the Army..." 

Of course I don't know if he had a good job in the Army. John Fogerty and I are not close.

Sunday, July 9, 2017


All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling.
~ Oscar Wilde
- - - - -

The moon in June
Falls mainly on the plain.

Why it does that - no one can explain.

It could be author of this piece of poetry
Has some things confused and little pedantry

It could the the writer was thinking of Lerner and Lowe
But didn't remember how the song should go

It could be something else or nothing at all
The moon in June before the moon in the fall.

Saturday, July 8, 2017


We spend the first 12 months of our children's lives teaching them to walk and talk 
and the next 12 telling them to sit down and shut up.
~ Phyllis Diller
- - - - -

I think to most benches people are nothing but a bunch of asses.

Friday, July 7, 2017


Rarely do members of the same family grow up under the same roof.
~ Richard Bach
- - - - -

I'm not sure what this is supposed to mean, but this is what it means to me. Times change. People change. Time changes people. The parents I had are slightly different from the parents Erik had. They are dramatically different from the parents that Kirk had. They parented in different ways.

Did I pave the way and make things easier for my brothers? Only if you believe that setting the bar incredibly high as a means of inspiring greatness is the same as making things easier for those who come next. 

Thursday, July 6, 2017


We don't always know what we're doing. We often just get excited, put something down, and say, "Oh, neat."
~ Tina Weymouth
- - - - -

A lot of people ask me if it is neat or if it sucks having my birthday right after the birthday of the United States.

I say, "It could be worse."

People say, "How?"

I say, "Well, just ask my brother."

People say, "Why?"

I say, "Well, his birthday is December 27th."


Actually, that's a lie. I mean, his birthday IS December 27th, but no one ever asks me that stuff.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017


Art and literature have given so many people the relief of feeling connected - pulled us out of isolation.
~ Adrienne Rich
- - - - -

People ask me if I'd like my image on some sort of relief in some grand building somewhere in the world. 

I used to say, "No, thank you." 

Now, I think it might be nice to have people say, "Michelle Boettcher - what a relief!"

Well, if they meant that it was a relief that I had lived and done amazing things. Not so much if they meant it was a relief I was dead. Seriously, what did I ever do to those people?!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017


The Statue of Liberty's construction holds great significance, for it is a tapestry of old symbols woven together to create new meaning. Her classical face and drapery suggest a Roman Goddess of Liberty; the broken shackles symbolize freedom newly achieved; the radiant crown represents her shedding light on the seven seas and continents. The tablet she holds, inscribed in Roman Numerals "July 4, 1776," identifies the figure as an apostle of American freedom, law and justice.
~ Statue of Liberty Exhibit Text
- - - - -

A lot of people think the Statue of Liberty was built in 1776. They are wrong. 

People need to learn history.

If they don't, we'll end up with another Warren G. Harding as president. He's the one who stood by while - according to U.S. News and World Report, "appointees and cronies plundered the U.S. government in a variety of creative ways."

And we don't want that to happen again!


Monday, July 3, 2017


The propagandist's purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human.
~ Aldous Huxley
- - - - -
What if instead of watching a television set, every day people just gathered and watch a sunset? I be the world would be a lot more quiet. Also, we would have absolutely no idea what is happening in the world.


Which is actually a lot like how things are anyway.

Sunday, July 2, 2017


There is nothing greater under the canopy of heaven than the tip of a bird's down in autumn, while the T'ai mountain is small... The universe and I came into being together; I and everything therein are One."
~ Chuang Tzu
- - - - -
When God was a baby and made the earth, God walked around and decided if God liked what things were called or not. God liked most of the names things had. God would say the names out loud to see how they sounded. The names of animals. Of celestial beings. Of reptiles. Of birds.

God was walking and talking and said, "Robins. Blue Jays. Cardinals." (Note that I have translated this into English because that is the language I know how to speak and write in.) God said, "Pelicans, storks, wrens." God said, "MOUNTAINS!"

God was trying to say, "Martins" but tripped over pointy rocky bits. 

And that's how "mountains" got to be called "mountains."

Saturday, July 1, 2017


It is only by saying, "No," that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.
~ Steve Jobs
- - - - -

to be honest, I think if I added Death Valley at Clemson University as the location of this toy guy with a pretzel it destroys the illusion. The illusion of what? Well, if I told you that would also destroy the illusion.