Category Archives: Joined at the Heart

Raccoon Swifted, Part 3

Rustoleum2Ah the sweet smell of ammonia success! The Taylor Swift marathon proved too much for the raccoon. Our neighborhood pet pest removed himself from the chimney. I’m moving on with the fireplace project without cage, capture, or release.

Today, I bought paint for the inside brick. Scratch that. Today, I bought paint twice for the inside brick. The first time, Bacon convinced me that high heat spray paint would be quick and painless. I knew better. After we got home with the rattle can, I took a look at the proscenium. That’s a college word (borrowed from the theatre) for picture frame.

“How the heck am I going to keep paint off of the brick?”

“You can mask it with something.”


“I don’t know. Paper. Tape.”

I dragged him out to the front porch, where two years ago I spray painted wrought iron columns.

“See that?” I pointed to a black gash on the concrete. “Two years ago, I covered the porch with tape and paper. You complained about it that day. The mark is still there. Why do I let you bully me into buying the cheapest thing?”

“I did not bully you.”

“You did.”

At this point, Bacon did something miraculous. He quit arguing and left home to run an errand. I took the rattle can back to Home Depot and exchanged it for a quart of brush-on High Heat Rustoleum.


Bacon came home with flowers. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Snow Day in the Tropics

Snow DayThe robo call came at 5:35 this morning.

The superintendent has decided that the roads are unsafe; therefore, school will be canceled for Friday, January 24. Information about a make-up day due to inclement weather will be forthcoming.

I crawled back in bed and fell asleep. For fifteen minutes. When the second call came, I opened Bacon’s ancient flip phone and slammed it shut. We slept in.

Today sits on the cusp of an unreasonably busy weekend. Coco plays in a violin contest Saturday morning. Cherry swims in a meet Saturday and Sunday. Coco swims in a different meet on Sunday. Bacon and I are the official transportation, going our separate ways to support both girls’ endeavors. Most climates would dictate mass cancellations, but the icicles on our eave are already melting. The National Weather Service predicts 60º for Saturday and 70º for Sunday. In other words, back to normal.

But this morning, it’s nice to have my family at home, huddled in front of  the television watching Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader and eating popcorn.


inkInk. Will it go the way of the 8-track? the cassette? the Commodore 64? The other day, I tried to buy another fountain pen in Office Depot. “Sorry Ma’am. We don’t carry them anymore.” The red-shirted clerk pivoted and spoke into his wireless headset. “Yeah, got it. Some lady on 10 wanted a fountain pen.” He listened. “No kidding. I’ve never even seen one.”

I sauntered out the glass sliders without so much as a new pack of Post Its. My old pen still worked, but I misplaced it a few days ago and panicked. When I found it in the bottom of my laptop bag, I had to apologize to everyone in my family for the string of nasty accusations. “Did you steal my pen? Take it off my desk? Let me see your pockets.” I got to thinking it might be worth the investment to have a back-up. Office Depot wasn’t the only option. I could buy online or try the mall. Though, the specialty shop at the mall was probably out of my price range.

I know I sound frivolous, downright silly. I own G2’s and Inkjoy’s. Premium mechanical pencils disappear as fast as Hershey’s Special Dark around our house. But, my Waterman extends my heart onto the page like no other device. Liquid loops from a real pen are intimate. A nib scratches softly, euphoniously etching my thoughts onto paper.


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