Sunday, December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas, Cardinals and Jays (and Mockingbirds, Squirrels, Nuthatches, Chickadees, and Juncos)!

Just a quick, mostly unserious note--just went out and filled the bird feeders, filled the squirrel feeder with dried corn cobs, put up some suet for the wood peckers, and all around made the yard happier for the birdies.  I try to remember, but I often space the feeders and the poor birds hang out on the fence, glaring at me. 

We bought the dog a new toy, a sweater, a sucker made of biscuit iced with peanut butter (the stick is rawhide, which we usually avoid, but hey, it's Christmas), some chew bones, and a bag of his fancy Castor and Pollux food. 

When I was a kid, we had these plaster molds for nativity figures.  Every year, we would make more figures and paint them.  They're missing now, those artistic endeavors, so I can only assume my mom tossed them at some point.  But I loved that--I loved it, and now I wish we'd done it with my boy.  I just suggested it, but didn't get much enthusiasm.  Looking around the internet, I see there's not much available, anyway.  These weren't cartoon-cute figures with little boy and little girl angels or cherubic Native American wise men/children.  They were the classic European-style figures, very serious.  Barnyard figures, Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, wise men, and a couple shepherds, plus the angel with the banner.  We did this every year, and I had forgotten until today how much I loved it.

One quick, more serious thing--I caught a story on AP today about how money and toys are pouring into Newtown.  I understand that we, as Americans, have a habit of throwing money and gifts at things because we don't know how to do anything else and we want to communicate our sorrow and solidarity.  But the folks in Newtown are, by and large, fairly well off.  These folks aren't poor in that sense.  So maybe a better show of support and empathy is contacting our President and our Legislators and letting them know that this needs to stop.  That we need to never, ever mark another year with another tragedy.  Not by putting "armed guards" in public schools (didn't work at Columbine, no reason to believe it would work anywhere else), but by getting guns out of the hands of criminals and the unbalanced and putting a permanent end to the sale of assault rifles and high capacity clips.

Doing something about the pervasive culture of violence might help a bit, too.

Oh, and no paneling today, but a thought--why put a mirror directly across from the toilet in the bathroom?  And then not put any magazines or books for folks to read?  So all they have to do is stare at their own faces while they use the toilet?  Seems mean.

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