Friday, 29 July 2011

Bits and Pieces

I had an electronic meltdown, possibly from an electrical surge but possibly from my tinkering. Do you remember that poem, "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing..."
That's me and computers. I know just enough to be able to screw things up in a big way. The whole thing started with my office laptop, that started getting the blue screen of death. By the time I was finished (or the power surge, whichever it was) I had no internet on any of my four computers. After many frustrating calls to my server, Bell, and my router company, both of whom blamed each other for the problem, I replaced all the ethernet cables, the telephone cable, the router and anything else that could be replaced. Except the modem, which Bell continued to insist was not the problem. So I upgraded and it was supposed to be delivered in two days. When I called a week later, someone had mysteriously cancelled the order, so I ordered again. This time it actually was two days and by the end of that day, I had internet again. Two or three weeks, it took and it was like losing a part of my brain. I just couldn't function normally without it.

The people where I live are absolutely wonderful for the most part. They're still neighborly and kind and you have to be careful what you say you need in front of some of them. The farm up the road has a CSI program, where for $25 you get a basket of fresh farm produce every two weeks or so, and theirs includes eggs, sometimes homemade bread and jam. One of those baskets showed up on my doorstep the other day because they had some left over and didn't want to waste them. Oh man, it's good. Fresh brown eggs, organic lettuce, beets, peas, baby Irish Cobbler potatoes...and broccoli. I'm munching my way through it very gratefully, but I keep eying the broccoli and passing it over. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE broccoli. I just love my broccoli full of chemicals. Organic broccoli has those sneaky, camouflaged, fat green worms hiding between the little broccoli stalks and they put me right off. I soak the broccoli in salty water and they fall off and die, but my brain is not convinced that I got them all. I like my veggies to be veggies and my meat to be meat; no way should meat be disguised as veggies. And no way should it be green.
So my theory about farming is that it all should be organic with the exception of broccoli. I've been eating local beef and pork and the difference in taste to the factory-raised animals is amazing. They actually have flavor! But they aren't green and they don't pretend they're vegetables. Poison the heck out of that broccoli!

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Another Great Blog

I'm cheating on my blog posts but every time I get a little time to do something and think I might haul out the jewelry makings, somebody calls for a load of ice.
So another quickie:
Check out Kelsi's Closet Jewelbox Design Journal and sign up for her newsletters...I love her Toolbox Tuesdays and bought a couple of Tronex, one plier and one cutter, on her recommendation. They are totally fantastic and now I want more. It's funny, though, the cutters are so sweet that I "save" them and won't use them unless I'm cutting silver wire. For copper and beading wire, I use the old cheap cutters so the Tronex ones won't get dull.
Anyway, great blog and Kelsi is looking for artists to showcase, so sign up and get yourself a little exposure and some great (and honest) review on tools.

Monday, 25 July 2011

Pearl Has Another Great Giveaway

Make sure you check out the Beading Gem's blog today for a chance to win a fantastic Modahaus Table Top Photo setup. Pearl's blog is one of my favourites anyway and if you don't subscribe, you should.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Passing of a Friend

It was a shock to read on the Standardbred Canada website that Bill McBeth has died. Bill was one of the most interesting people I ever dealt with during my tenure at Standardbred Canada and he thought enough of me to phone a few times after I moved to the Island.
Bill was a real cowboy. He came from somewhere in the United States, Montana, I think, and although I never met him in person, I envisioned him as tall and lanky, gruff like his telephone voice. He ran a feedlot for slaughter horses and told me there were thousands on the lot at one time. The thought of horses being killed for human or pet food really bothered me, especially the huge numbers involved, but it was always a little more palatable knowing that Bill was looking out for them, even if it was one horse at a time. If a stock horse or a racehorse came through the lot that looked like it shouldn't be there, Bill would find a home for it. As a last resort, he'd add it to his own band of saved horses. He grieved to see the herds of powerful and majestic Belgian horses being bred strictly for flying to Japan for human consumption. I don't know how he did his job but there are a lot of horses lucky that he did.
Bill was never of the internet generation but he loved to talk on the phone. Like all my email friends that I've never met, he touched my life through those long phone calls. I'm sure I'm not the only one who will miss you, old friend. Ride free.