The big day.

No breakfast in bed for me yesterday; I get up earlier than everyone else in the house every day of the week, and Sunday is the one day of the week I can linger in the gym. Isn’t Mothers Day supposed to be about what mothers want?

So I got up, walked the dog, made pancakes-bacon-coffee for the house and was en route to hitting the weight rack and Pilates before anyone else was even moving. Now it’s late afternoon, and I’m barbecuing ribs. Also: Mac and cheese and collard greens. If that sounds more like a Fathers Day menu, you’re not alone, but it’s a lovely day and it just seemed to require ribs.

But the big project today is the back yard, which is finally starting to shape up. The decision last fall to cover the bare ground with leaf mulch paid off; with that and the steady snow cover, we didn’t have nearly the mud problem I anticipated. And now the plants are going in. Wendy has grass to pee and poop in — sod, but it really made more sense than waiting on seed to sprout. We loaded up on bedding plants at the Eastern Market, and with any luck, we’ll have a pretty nice place to hang after a couple of weeks. We have furniture and a fire bowl and, depending on the landscape architect’s inspiration (that would be Alan) a nice varied landscape of this and that.

Somewhere in there was a nice Delmonico steak and some sautéed morels. That’s Livin’.(tm)

I spent some time paging through social media today, where many people were posting photos of their mothers — the still-young ones, the old and stooped ones and the faded black-and-whites of mothers already gone. It reminded me that time is fleeting, and so are morels. Sauté them in butter, then.

What went on in your world?

A bit of bloggage before the week begins:

Alaska isn’t really the Alaska you see on reality television.

Michael Sam’s boyfriend. Whoa — nice abs.

Monday awaits. Attack it.

Posted at 12:30 am in Same ol' same ol' |

25 responses to “The big day.”

  1. Basset said on May 12, 2014 at 8:01 am

    I’m usually the first up here – got up early Sunday and made a spinach frittata that nobody seemed to notice, then dug and trimmed and planted most of the day. Mothers’ Day dinner at a boathouse restaurant on the muddy Cumberland River, and we move on.
    High point of the weekend was a canoe/kayak trip Saturday for about twenty inner-city kids with one of the local river preservation groups. Took them down a creek which runs through the outer reaches of the hood, a couple miles of float a hundred yards then get out and drag for twenty followed by a couple more of greasy flat water with no current, paddling all the way with Mrs. B in the front and I’m still sore. Trash on the banks, nasty water and a sign at the takeout warning of fecal bacteria levels, don’t touch the water or get it on ya. The broken sewer was only about a quarter mile upstream, but still.

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  2. beb said on May 12, 2014 at 8:11 am

    Basset, it sounds like your ready for your next canoeing party — through the sewers of Nashville! I’m sure the kids had a lot of fun but I’d be worried about all the trash, greasy water and E.Coli warning signs. I’m getting too out of shape for canoeing but for a while a group of us would float down the Huron River. Very clean, never too deep, and with a bunch of new fallen trees to paddle around. It was nature in the raw — just not too raw!

    My brother-in-law is a pilot/ A couple years back he went up to Alaska for the summer to fill in some piloting work up there. Came home early swearing that the pilots up there were crazy. So I imagine some of that Alaskan reality shows are closer to reality than one would like to admit.

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  3. Deborah said on May 12, 2014 at 8:19 am

    On Saturday we had champagne and a bottle of Pinot Noir, with caprese (they brought) and ciabatta rolls and pesto along with a hunk of aged fontina (we brought) with friends on the “deck” between our buildings. These friends are retiring and moving to the Georgia coast in a week or so. We’ll be sorry to see them go.

    Mother’s Day was just a typical Sunday. Little Bird and I are going to celebrate the day in June when I’m back in Santa Fe.

    The weather in Chicago was lovely over the weekend with a thunderstorm Sunday evening. It’s going to get up in the 80s again today.

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  4. Pam (the sister) said on May 12, 2014 at 9:37 am

    I’m so annoyed! The weather hasn’t been good enough to plant anything. It rained off and on yesterday, plus I can’t plant anything new until I take up the stuff that didn’t make it through the winter. A list (this is why I’m annoyed) 1) all four of the KnockOut roses, dead; 2) the Butterfly bush, dead; 3) the October Glory Clematis that I’ve had for years, dead; 4) a row of 3 Hydrangea, holding on by a thread; 5) all of the old growth Weigela and the Privet have 1/10th the normal number of new leaves. Then, to suck out all the remaining joy, 4 of my large pots (expensive to replace) cracked in multiple places over the winter and had to be destroyed (not the one you gave me, Nancy, thank goodness). And I’m not the only one, my neighbors have all had similar losses. Next door, Susan and Gary lost a flowering cherry that they’ve had for years. It was really large and showed no signs of stress last year. Her KnockOuts are gone as well. But then, I read on the web where there’s a virus infecting them. Typical, when a plant has been overly hybridized and is too popular. Please post some photos of your yard when it’s all done. I’d like to see Alan’s solution to the giant concrete slabs that the previous owners installed. At least, concrete doesn’t die. Well, not altogether true, our driveway heaved over the winter and had to be replaced. I’m shaking my fist at climate change! Nan, do you watch the show Vice? Joe has it on permanent record, he loves it. Last week’s episode dealt with how Texans are approaching the drought in their state which is to deny it exists and lots of praying for rain. If I remember my history, that’s what they did during the 1930s dust bowl because it worked so well. Wow, this is dark and whiney! I’ll stop now.

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  5. Charlotte said on May 12, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Pam — I had a lot of die-back too — most of my roses are back to the ground (and I only plant shrub roses). Transplanted a big climber and looks like it’s a dead duck. Rain and snow here all week … my tomatoes look great in the greenhouse but it’s too cold to even start hardening them off.

    Plus, my dear friend the professional memoir ghostwriter loved my manuscript but told me in no uncertain terms that my proposal sucks, so what did I do? Rewrite it this weekend? No — I fell into a crafty vortex where I became obsessed with making patterns from a few of my favorite clothes that fit really well and then sewing dresses. All weekend. In my basement crafty space. Emerged blinking in the light yesterday afternoon and now, back to work. I’ve decided to pretend to be not me, but my own dear friend who wants to sell the book for me.

    But morels! They’re starting to show up here as well — and in oddball places where no one has ever seen them before. Could be a good year. We’ve had morel pizza, morels on hamburgers, morels on eggs and tonight it’s going to be morel fried rice. Yum.

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  6. Judybusy said on May 12, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Basset, that sounds just awful. Hopefully the kids will get to go somewhere that’s not so degraded.

    Pam that just stinks. What a lot of losses! I think I’ve lost some things too-but nothing like shrubs. Brunnera and some heucheras. My head is a-swimming these days with planting ideas for the expanded garden beds. The weaterh’s almost total crap here, too. It can’t seem to go more than two days without more rain. Lows this week in upper 30s,highs in 50s. I’m supposed to be hardening off stuff for our master gardener plant sale, too. We’ll see. I second the request of pictures of Nancy’s project.

    I was able to do a bit of gardening Saturday after volunteering at a community garden, helping newbie gardeners plant their plots. Totally fun, gorgeous morning. Sunday was spent seeing my mom and my partner’s. We did get the patio furniture out of storage and set up on the new patio. Looks *fantastic* and I’m so glad my patio plan flows as well as I hoped. It will be a while before we can eat out there, given the weather, and that we’ll be out of town next weekend. Going to KC for a friend’s graduation from medical school, which he began at age 40. We’re so very happy for him.

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  7. brian stouder said on May 12, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    I’d be inclined to call bullshit on this article, and say this is ginned-up/faux “outrage” at the reaction of one exceptionally talented person to tremendously good professional news.

    See, upon hearing the news of his official draft into the NFL, he kissed his significant other (gasp!), and, according to this article, bunches and bunches of ‘social media’ types then immediately went into fits and fainting spells.

    And we’re not talking about the usual group of stunted little turd blossoms that populate every damned internet news thread, but NFL players!

    an excerpt:

    “I’m sorry but that Michael Sam is no bueno for doing that on national tv,” former Super Bowl champion Derrick Ward tweeted.

    “Man U got little kids lookin at the draft. I can’t believe ESPN even allowed that to happen,” Ward added.

    Ward, who played for the New York Giants and the Houston Texans, said he has received death threats against him and his children after the comments.

    (pity? he wants pity?)

    Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones also expressed his disapproval, tweeting “horrible” and “OMG” after the kiss was aired. He has since deleted those comments.

    What a world

    Photos: Openly gay athletes Photos: Openly gay athletes

    “Man U got little kids lookin at the draft. I can’t believe ESPN even allowed that to happen,” Ward added.

    Ward, who played for the New York Giants and the Houston Texans, said he has received death threats against him and his children after the comments.

    Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones also expressed his disapproval, tweeting “horrible” and “OMG” after the kiss was aired. He has since deleted those comments.

    I mean, what? This is a joke, right?

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  8. Jeff Borden said on May 12, 2014 at 12:20 pm


    Unfortunately, it’s not a joke.

    I’d rather swim naked through the river of sewage Bassett described than spend a moment watching Faux News, but I saw something online this morning that the trio of dunces on “Fox and Friends” were joined by our favorite combover victim, The Donald, to whine and complain about Sam’s kiss. Every time I think my contempt for Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes has bottomed out, I see reminders like this of how much hate and anger and prejudice Faux pumps out every moment of every day. Today was no different.

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  9. Joe Kobiela said on May 12, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    I’m just going to,throw this out there, I really could care less that’s he kissed his significant other. Don’t consider my self a homo phobe, my daughters maid of honer in her wedding was her best buddy a gay gentleman.
    My question is why if those that agree with gay marriage and such are allowed to voice their feelings in favore, why do you vilifie and call names and say hatefull things about someone that disagrees with you? Don’t those people have a right, just like the rest to voice their opinion?
    Pilot Joe

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  10. coozledad said on May 12, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    You know what they say about firefighting. It’s not the pay, it’s the benefits:

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  11. MarkH said on May 12, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    RE: The Donald’s Sam/Tebow equivalency: What Mr. Trump fails to realize or acknowledge is that Tebow had multiple opportunities to display NFL-level talent and prowess. His modest accomplishments in Denver not withstanding, he failed to light a fire with three different teams. A talented college athlete, Sam will now be given the NFL opportunity as well and by all accounts he will deliver to the Rams. Could be a game-changer when that happens and everyone will settle down. Tebow may have another shot left in him as well.

    Brian, re: pity. Death threats (if true)? Death threats are warranted?

    To Joe’s question: yes. But opinions as to the venue will vary.

    Off-topic a bit: Nancy has brought the Idaho Stop Law up for discussion before. It does make sense, especially after reading this article. Here in Jackson Hole, we have far too many cyclists who mistake a full-on blast through a stop sign or a red light for this simple courtesy. I’m curious what may be happening on other communities represented on nn.c.

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  12. Hattie said on May 12, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    I loved the photo of your first moment of motherhood, and your comment, like, where’s the users’ manual. That is exactly how I felt!

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  13. Heather said on May 12, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    I always do an Idaho stop at stop signs and stop at red lights–but if it’s a totally deserted intersection, I’m going to go through a red light. I do know someone here in Chicago who got a ticket for going through a red light here in Chicago, so I don’t usually do it, and I never do it at major intersections.

    I do see some cyclists running through intersections, and I agree they shouldn’t. I also think that the (many more) drivers I see running stop signs and red lights shouldn’t do that, either.

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  14. Bruce Fields said on May 12, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    “why do you vilifie and call names and say hatefull things about someone that disagrees with you? Don’t those people have a right, just like the rest to voice their opinion?”

    Sure, they can call gays names, and we can call them names for it. And nobody’s free from further criticism or consequences in either case; xkcd says it well. (Love the mouse-over: “I can’t remember where I heard this, but someone once said that defending a position by citing free speech is sort of the ultimate concession; you’re saying that the most compelling thing you can say for your position is that it’s not literally illegal to express.”)

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  15. brian stouder said on May 12, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    Brian, re: pity. Death threats (if true)? Death threats are warranted?


    Nope. You might have noticed how that bit of information came to us (emphasis added by me)

    “Man U got little kids lookin at the draft. I can’t believe ESPN even allowed that to happen,” Ward added. Ward, who played for the New York Giants and the Houston Texans, said he has received death threats against him and his children after the comments.

    So, first, let’s assume that this thoughtless lout is actually telling us the truth, that other trolls have trolled on his twitter-feed (or whatever). Leaving aside that the sort of intolerance and hate that he (apparently) traffics in will tend to draw the same sort of bile, I suggest to you that he is simply lying, and/or that whoever tweeted such a “threat” was either a confederate (ideologically) of his, or some lonely maroon somewhere, typing into his phone.

    By way of saying, it would turn my head if it was another loutish NFL player issuing “death threats” to the homophobic halfback.

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  16. nancy said on May 12, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    Joe, this would be my reply: When Fox & Friends has to bring Donald effin’ Trump on to discuss Michael Sam, that’s a big fat sign to me that I don’t have to be respectful of anything they say. What on earth does Trump know about the NFL, gay people or anything other than, mayyyyybe, casino development that makes him a qualified guest?

    To me, this is a sign that the entire segment is going to be trolling. And you can respond to trolls however you like.

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  17. Sherri said on May 12, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Well, Donald Trump did own a football team in the USFL 30 years ago, and paid a lot of money to Prospero’s favorite football player, Herschel Walker, as a result. Of course, the USFL failed, so Trump doesn’t know much about running a football team well…

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  18. Jeff Borden said on May 12, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    Quite honestly, I don’t think you can vilify Faux News and the people in front of and behind the cameras too much. It has had a terrible effect on our political discourse. . .has trafficked in the worst kinds of slurs, innuendoes and outright race-baiting under cover that those statements are made by “commentators” and not “news people.” . .has driven the Republican Party so far to the right that St. Ronald would be denied an invitation to the party these days.

    I’m a former journalist and I’ve always argued for more not less news sources. But I was thinking more along the lines of way “The Wall Street Journal” –at least before Rupert Murdoch got his greasy fingers on it– which had terrific business and political coverage to balance the quackery on its editorial pages. Faux would make the old Pravda proud.

    Obamacare is working. Unemployment is falling. Consumer confidence is rising. The deficit is shrinking. So. . .BENGHHAZI!!! MONICA!!!! HILLARY!!!!!

    I wish Faux had never been launched. I can’t think of one positive thing it has contributed to the national conversation.

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  19. brian stouder said on May 12, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    I wish Faux had never been launched. I can’t think of one positive thing it has contributed to the national conversation.

    I will take the easy part of the discussion* (as always!) and say that – twisted though Fox may be – the American national conversation is as healthy now as it ever has been. One of Fox’s sacred Founding Fathers, Thomas Jefferson (confession: I don’t like TJ – even after Meacham’s fawning book) was a hypocrite who could write beautifully, and who wasn’t above simply imprisoning newspaper editors he disagreed with.

    True enough, in 2014 people are capable of cocooning within tailored news sources who match their prejudices…and arguably this is as American as apple pie, too; a genuinely timeless practice. Indeed, thinking of 19th century partisan press – when they actually did depend on presses to get their words out – the rabble who disagreed passionately enough might – on any given night – pitch the damned press into the river, and/or lynch the editor (see Owen Lovejoy).

    All in all, I’ll take the 2014 media knotheads over and above previous generations – even as I reserve the right to do so only with a full measure of (rhetorical) scorn.

    *I believe that if Jeff were suddenly presented with a button that vaporized Fox News, he’d never press it; just as none of the rest of us would

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  20. Jeff Borden said on May 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    I’m not so sure, Brian.

    I used the WSJ in the above comment for a reason. It is ideologically opposite, say, the New York Times, but it also has a crackerjack news staff and terrific editors. It focuses on things other newspapers can’t or won’t cover and aside from the editorial page it is usually above reproach. With Faux, it’s almost the exact opposite. Most of what it broadcasts is bullshit, but occasionally they stumble over actual news. They’ll go wall-to-wall with the Benghazi hearings, which likely will produce nothing new, but will give every preening teabagger a place to show off for the rubes back home.

    Just playing devil’s here and meaning no disrespect, but are we really have conversations or are we just yelling at each other? What Faux supplies in abundance is heat, not light, right?

    Ah, hell, I probably would not vaporize Faux because it furnishes so much great material for Jon Stewart, Bill Maher and Stephen Colbert.

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  21. LAMary said on May 12, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    I recall Bill Maher accusing Ann Coulter of “just making shit up.” Fox does that. They just make shit up.

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  22. Jeff Borden said on May 12, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Agreed. They just make shit up.

    And when they turn 100% of their attention to Trey Gowdy’s clown and pony show about Benghazi, they will loudly assert that they are the only “news” organization with the courage to do so. Come on, this is a “news” channel funded by a salacious rightwinger willing to give up his Australian citizenship to pursue his political ends and run by a former professional ratfker from the Nixon adminstration with no real background in journalism. Why do we even pretend it does news?

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  23. Dave said on May 12, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    Clay Akin will be the nominee in North Carolina. Ya’ never know:

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  24. Suzanne said on May 12, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    I had to attend a business dinner on Friday with my husband. I was not looking forward to it knowing that one of the wives was an avid Fox watcher. The past few years almost every conversation with her was such a downer–“the country is going to hell! They are taking away our freedoms! I fear for our children! Sharia Law is just around the corner!” On and on.

    This time, she was actually quite pleasant and only once mentioned wondering what kind of world her grandchildren would inherit. What had changed? Then it hit me! She’d gotten a job and was no longer at home all day to listen to Rush, and Beck, and the fine folks at Fox.

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  25. alex said on May 12, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    The difference between WSJ and Fox is that the former does at least have some journalistic standards. It published an article debunking the top 16 bullshit attacks on Obamacare, all of which continue in one form or another to be plied by Fox. They may both be Murdoch organs but one of them knows its audience isn’t completely stupid.

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