This bag, it is mixed.

You can hate on clock-changing all you want, but there’s nothing like a little extra sunshine, and that springlike angle to the light that says: It may still be very cold, but winter has been driven from its fortification, and I am back, baby.

Which is to say: Happy vernal equinox to all who celebrate, i.e. all of us.

I’m reconsidering my relationship with Amazon, if that’s even possible. Last week, I ordered four different things that I can’t find at stores here — a nice facial moisturizer that I discovered in France and is the one I’ve been searching for ever since I entered the Age of Wrinkles; the Klorane conditioner that restores my hair to something resembling hair, not flyaway gray straw, after a swim, also discovered in France; a descaler for our coffeemaker that Alan has decreed is more effective than vinegar; and a separate cleaner for the carafe, ditto. This is arriving in no fewer than three separate shipments, presumably because they’re coming from warehouses all over the region. There is nothing, not even extended idling on a cold day just to keep the car warm, that can make me feel more like a climate traitor than realizing a truck had to drive to my house to deliver a bottle of conditioner. And two separate locations for the coffeepot cleaners?! What the what!

But chances are I will do it again, because this is modern life.

The moisturizer, by the way, is Embryolisse. I think they call it that because it makes your skin as soft as a fetus’, but what do I know.

I started a conversation yesterday on my Facebook page, and it’s generated some interesting responses, so I’m going to continue it here. The question: Do you share your location with your family members, via some sort of smartphone app? More or less permanently, via the Always On feature? This came up in a conversation with friends last summer, and when I expressed wonder that anyone would do that, I was informed that it’s commonplace. You can do it via various apps, the most common being Google Maps; there’s a setting you can click to allow anyone you choose, who also has a Google account, to know where you — or your phone, anyway — are, every minute of the day. Parents share with their teenagers, spouses with one another. It’s most common in family units, obviously.

I’ve used it with a one-hour expiration a few times. When we were in Madrid, we had friends there at the same time, and it was a nice tool when we were meeting at some sidewalk cafe at the corner of two medieval streets with names I couldn’t spell anyway. But the idea of leaving it on forever? Hell no. And yet, I’ve seen it more than once, and some of the people who answered had their reasons for doing so.

Would you be comfortable doing this? It seems like it’d be an easy tool to abuse, particularly for bad spouses and partners.

Finally, is Trump really going to be indicted? Will we get a mugshot? That’s all I care about.

And with that, I’ve come to the bottom of my mixed bag. I had lunch today with Eric Zorn in Ann Arbor, and I want some quiet time to think about everything we talked about. That’s the best kind of conversation.

Posted at 6:45 pm in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

94 responses to “This bag, it is mixed.”

  1. Suzanne said on March 19, 2023 at 7:10 pm

    The woman I work for uses her phone to track her adult married children all the time. I think it’s strange but her kids obviously allow it. I have tracked my kids a few times for a unique reason but on a daily basis? No. They would not allow it.

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  2. alex said on March 19, 2023 at 7:41 pm

    Right now on PBS I’m watching Detroit’s Schvitz! Interesting. I forget the host’s name but he goes to offbeat places and reports on them.

    It does seem incredibly wasteful to have Amazon deliver a single item. Hadn’t thought of it that way. And it’s become a habit for me as well. Stores never have what I want, or I don’t feel like shopping. I’ve gotten Warby Parker specs for a fraction of what eyeglasses would have cost at the optometrist’s office. I’ve gotten my rock salt antiperspirant that’s always on back order at the drugstore. And appliance parts (nearly threw out a perfectly good front-loading dryer) and car parts and shoes and chinos and all sorts of stuff.

    Nice thing about having well water is no lime scale in my coffee makers. They die of other causes, like being cheap and shitty in the first place.

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  3. David C said on March 19, 2023 at 8:39 pm

    We dropped Prime a couple of months ago. Maybe we’re just in a buying lull but it feels like we’re doing less oh what the hell Amazon probably has that spending. We bought only one thing from them after Prime expired. We’re also paring down our streaming channels. I don’t know if we’re economizing or just sick of shit.

    At least half the time my cell phone is turned off because I don’t want to be bothered. So no, our family isn’t going to be allowed to track us.

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  4. Sherri said on March 19, 2023 at 8:59 pm

    Absolutely not, on either tracking or being tracked. I never did, even when my now grown daughter was a teenager. I think it’s creepy as hell. The world isn’t that dangerous.

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  5. Mark P said on March 19, 2023 at 9:09 pm

    I have my wife’s phone set up so I can find her. When I was in the hospital last May and needed something from home, I had to guide her back to the hospital when she missed it.

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  6. Charlie said on March 19, 2023 at 9:14 pm

    A few years ago I went on biking trip to Europe with my family(wife, 2 kids: nine and twelve)and my sister and her teenage son. Cell phones did not work and we were too cheap to rent European ones. We biked in loose groups some going faster, some (my family) slow. One day the fast group included my sister’s son and they all overshot the end point. Everyone just said, “Well, they will turn around and head back in 30 minutes”. My sister started to freak out and cry. I realized that she had never had to wait more than 10 or 15 minutes to talk to her son on his cell phone basically his whole life. She didn’t know how to wait to find out he was OK or trust that he could work it out himself. I had to reprimand my youngest for laughing at her. It is mean to laugh at people when they are crying but don’t develop a relationship where you can’t let people (even 15 year olds) exist independently. My kids now ride Chicago transit to school and they have cell phones but I would never track them.

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  7. Deborah said on March 19, 2023 at 9:19 pm

    That’s a no on all the time tracking, but when traveling I can see using it.

    Nancy, I clicked on your Embryolisse link, there are lots of moisturizing options, which do you suggest? It sounds wonderful.

    I read that Trump will get a mug shot, finger printed and a DNA swab will be taken (I’m wondering if that can be used in the E. Jean Carrol case?). But no handcuffs and he may not even have to leave Mar-A-Lago to do any of this. Since we’re going to be in Manhattan the week after next, I hope it doesn’t happen that week if he does go there for the arraignment.

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  8. Sherri said on March 19, 2023 at 10:22 pm

    I had seen so many moms of my acquaintance send their kids off to college and then be on the phone with them constantly solving their problems for them. I did everything I could to make sure things were set up reasonably for my daughter, dropped her off at college and took my husband out of the country for two weeks. I told her not to call unless she had to. She did call once, but only after she had tried multiple ways to solve the problem.

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  9. basset said on March 19, 2023 at 10:39 pm

    A travel question: we have a layover coming up of close to seven hours at Boston Logan. Is that enough time to get off the airport and do something? Never been there, don’t know the city
    at all.

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  10. Julie Robinson said on March 19, 2023 at 11:11 pm

    Definitely, basset, and there’s all kinds of public transportation available. The hop on, hop off bus tours are great when you have a short time in a city, and I promise you’ll want to go back. You can’t walk two feet without meeting history in Boston, and I found it all fascinating.

    Now I need to know more about this Klorane conditioner because my Pantene is having trouble keeping up. There are too many options.

    Nance, the influencer.

    My mom would like to take her buzzaround on short journeys by herself but has a terrible sense of geography. I can see where the ability to track her could be helpful. If only we could convince her to get another cell phone.

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  11. Marybeth Sinning Poole said on March 19, 2023 at 11:27 pm

    Based on a recommendation in New York Magazine I tried Verb shampoo and conditioner. I recommend them both. The other one I’ve tried based on NYM’s advice is Monday shampoo and conditioner. Also good. Neither of these choices are cheap but they aren’t crazy expensive either. Both available on Amazon. Monday is cheaper at Costco but it’s a bigger size.

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  12. Dexter Friend said on March 19, 2023 at 11:30 pm

    Circa 1994 a boyhood friend who became a partner in a big auctioneer house in Fort Wayne was driving during one of those flooding times and his car was spun into a deep ditch which he couldn’t escape. He had a cell phone but no tracking device. His car remained submerged until the flooding subsided. A tracking device perhaps could have saved him.

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  13. Dexter Friend said on March 20, 2023 at 2:32 am

    Basset, you’ll leave Boston with a new definition of “The T”. We vacationed in MA in Boston, Gloucester, Cape Cod , Plymouth (Plimouth Plantation) 7 times as I recall. Like everywhere, in Boston there are sketchy places you want to avoid. “The Big Dig” was completed in 2007 and now traffic utilizes tunnels instead of elevated highways. The Ted Williams Tunnel takes you to and from Logan as it is badged as I-95.
    In all our trips out east, my memories include a game at Fenway Park between the Red Sox and White Sox, two whale watching trips out of Provincetown, and seeing more gay men than ever walking hand-in-hand and kissing and walking around in cowboy chaps and nothing else. P-Town is Gay Town Central.

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  14. Jim said on March 20, 2023 at 6:37 am

    If Trampy is indicted, he’s stipulated that there HAS to be a million cameras on him – he’s ADDICTED to being in the spotlight .

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  15. Dorothy said on March 20, 2023 at 7:26 am

    I guess I’m one of the weird ones who DOES use the app for seeing where specific people are. The only ones I can see are my immediate family – husband, daughter, son and d-i-l. It’s very useful for mostly Mike and I – he has a 90 minute commute. I can have dinner ready to put on the table almost the minute he walks in the door. He’s diabetic and has to do a shot when he gets home. He also has to be careful about his sugar ‘dropping’ so if food is ready immediately that keeps his sugar balanced better. Then for my son and his wife, I can see when they’re approaching my house where their daughter is with me, and I can get her in her shoes and coat and be ready to get her in their car to save them time when they get home from a long day at work. If one of them has picked up the baby before getting to my house, that’s all the more reason for me to have Olivia ready – they’re not going to leave the baby in the car outside the house to run in and get Olivia. If she’s ready to go when they get here, they get home faster and get their dinner made, etc.

    Maybe you guys will think this is all avoidable but I do have to say it’s a very useful time help. We don’t ‘stalk’ each other. We’re adults and use it the way we need to in order to help with general life situations. However I can certainly see how it would be a problem for people in a very overbearing and or dangerous relationship.

    Icarus in the previous post you said you have had to re-log into MyQ more than once. I’ve had it for 14 months and have never had to do that. Maybe your settings could be re-examined to avoid that log in repetition? I don’t use the actual app every day – only on days I am walking to and returning from the bus stop at 2:45 or so. However when I leave the house and open the garage, then close it, the app sends me a little verification tone. “BobSweet is OPEN” or “BobSweet is CLOSED”. I guess that IS using the app but I’m not pushing anything on my phone – it’s the use of the garage door opener on the wall of my garage, or the button in my car to open or close the door.

    Oh – the app for seeing/tracking people? You have to have their permission to do that. The five of us adults have all willingly given that permission.

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  16. David C said on March 20, 2023 at 8:53 am

    I want Alvin Bragg to take a pass on Tuesday. Who knows if that was going to be the day anyway. He should hold a presser late Tuesday saying “I don’t know when or if he’ll be arrested”. Then drop the hammer at 5:00 AM Wednesday.

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  17. Jeff Gill said on March 20, 2023 at 9:19 am

    My wife and I have iPhone SEs and the tracking is in the messaging function; we’ve never turned it off. If you’re messaging you can click the name and see a map. Not infrequently towards the end of the day, I’ll get a text from her “i see you are at the store, can you also pick up blueberries?” And when I’m over in Indy, it’s helpful for her without asking to see where I’m at, father-in-law’s house or hospital or walking the halls at Newfields.

    Our son turned his off when he went to college, and now he’s 24 and still on our plan, but that’s a given . . . he did turn it back on when he was traveling last summer as he was asking for directions or suggestions as he meandered some countryside we knew already, and for rendezvous purposes when each of us in turn took a trip out to visit (he was working at Philmont in New Mexico). It’s a tool, and like any tool can be misused.

    What both her and my friends express dismay about when it comes up is that we are both on the same credit card & Amazon account. Works for us, but I’m always amazed at how emphatically people have told each of us that’s not healthy. I don’t think total transparency is necessary for a relationship to work well, but I don’t see how it’s problematic. We lived a very tight budget for two decades before we got to a more secure financial position, and just got used to full disclosure down to the $5 expenditure level early on.

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  18. Jeff Borden said on March 20, 2023 at 9:35 am

    There will be violence once the orange tumor is arrested. He’ll demand it. I’m sure there are more than a few Timothy McVeighs among the MAGAts, anxious to put their AR-15s to use against the deep state.

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  19. Lou Gravity said on March 20, 2023 at 9:55 am

    You must realize that the Amazon truck didn’t leave the warehouse with just your order. The truck is filled with other orders and is on a computer generated route designed to deliver stuff with maximum efficiency. Mr. Bezos didn’t get so rich by not understanding economy of scale.

    In fact, the best thing one can do for the environment is to encourage ones neighbors to order from Amazon as well. Delivering to say, twenty places in your area rather than ten, would be twice as efficient, and immeasurably more efficient than having twenty people get in their cars and drive somewhere to buy.

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  20. Icarus said on March 20, 2023 at 10:15 am

    Just like Jeff Gill, I use the Share Your Location feature within the iPhone Messaging app. For a long time, my phone showed my wife’s location and I would use it to time dinner. Her phone would show the location of my iPad which rarely left the house. luckily, with some iOS updates, it finally shows my phone now. We enabled the family share plan since our kids now have legitimate iPads (before they had Amazon Fires).

    Dorothy, correct. since you used the app frequently, I suspect it didn’t require you to relog in. In our Chicago home, the wifi reached the garage but it wasn’t a strong signal. And I usually just used the remotes clipped to visors.

    Our proprietress and I disagree on the impact of DST. Yes, I can, and have dealt with it for 53 years. But as I get older I realize how annoying it is, especially now that I have children. I thought we were supposed to be sensitive to the struggles of others that we might not suffer ourselves?

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  21. Bruce Fields said on March 20, 2023 at 10:48 am

    Yeah, I thought I’d heard online shopping was generally more efficient in terms of carbon emissions, and googling turns up a lot of articles to that effect, though it’s really too complicated to boil down to either/or:

    I think it highlights the fact that single-occupancy vehicles are really inefficient. One of the most important things we can do is to grow our cities in such a way that less driving is required.

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  22. Julie Robinson said on March 20, 2023 at 10:55 am

    Icarus, I’m with you. I feel better when I wake up to the sun instead of the dark.

    Supposedly Drumpy’s grand jury still has another witness to interview, making a Tuesday arrest unlikely. I could be wrong. Of course he is raising money out of this left and right. Grifters gotta grift.

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  23. ROGirl said on March 20, 2023 at 11:21 am

    DST in Michigan is a pain in the ass because we’re the farthest west in the eastern time zone. Year-round DST means it doesn’t get light until after 9 am. They did that when I was in high school and I walked to school in the dark all winter. As of 2 weeks ago, it isn’t fully light until around 8.

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  24. LAMary said on March 20, 2023 at 11:32 am

    Amazon has the option of grouping your deliveries to arrive all on the same day. You can even get a credit for digital stuff like books or music. I know a lot of my neighbors use Amazon a lot. I was outside yesterday when I saw the Amazon truck up the street from me. I figured I’d wait outside since I was expecting an order. The truck made four deliveries before it got to me and it headed down the street to make more after I got my orders. The reason I was outside was I got a grocery order from Instacart and one of the bags I got was not my stuff. I messaged the driver right away but he was gone. I know Instacart would have told me to keep the stuff but I didn’t want it. I have three bottles of Silk Almond coffee creamer now, flavors like creme brulee. This is not something I would use in my coffee. I gave one of my neighbors some of the produce that I didn’t have room for but he didn’t want the creme brulee coffee stuff either. He also didn’t want the jar of Irish Moss that was in the bag. It’s a supplement I’ve never heard of and it doesn’t look very appetizing.

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  25. LAMary said on March 20, 2023 at 11:48 am

    In case you missed it:

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  26. Icarus said on March 20, 2023 at 11:51 am

    @LAMary @24: when we lived in Chicago we had, and used the option, to get free digital credits. Now that we live in Sh*tsville, MS we don’t get that option because Amazon really only delivers on a few particular days. They apparently stagger the deliveries so that it makes economical sense to them. Even our next-day Prime deliveries happen to be delayed somehow toward the end of the week.

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  27. nancy said on March 20, 2023 at 1:08 pm

    < girl stuff >

    Deborah, I’m reluctant to recommend products to anyone without knowing what their needs are, but here’s mine: I use the Embryolisse Lait-Créme Concentré, and I usually buy the Sensitive variety, just because I like unscented products best, not because I have sensitive skin. I do, even in my dotage, have oily spots here and there, and my skin changes wildly between summer and winter. But this is very very light, and doesn’t feel like I’m putting grease on my skin. You can slap it on for overnight, or just use a little bit in the morning. You can also use it around your eyes without irritation, and that’s very important for this swimmer, because that’s really what needs attention when I get out of the pool.

    It’s kind of a cult-following product; this is only one of the many pieces you find when you google.

    < /girl stuff >

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  28. Deborah said on March 20, 2023 at 1:41 pm

    Thanks Nancy, I ordered a version that’s more for super dry skin like mine. I should get it Thursday from Amazon.

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  29. Joe Kobiela said on March 20, 2023 at 2:35 pm

    Why not just start school a hour later?
    Pilot Joe

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  30. brian stouder said on March 20, 2023 at 2:46 pm

    Joe – I’d betcha that shifting the school- day schedule (twice a year!) would precipitate a shit-storm of Biblical proportions, and quickly spiral into the ground! Just sayin’

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  31. ROGirl said on March 20, 2023 at 3:21 pm

    Why not put Michigan in the central time zone?

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  32. David C said on March 20, 2023 at 4:16 pm

    Michigan and a good chunk of the Eastern time zone should be in the Central. Ideally, the zones should be 7.5 degrees of longitude either side of 15 degree increments. 90 degrees w longitude runs through the UP and Wisconsin. So Michigan is almost half a time zone off. Way back when the decided they wanted to be on the same time as NYC and have been paying for it since.

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  33. robert said on March 20, 2023 at 4:38 pm

    We don’t use the tracking feature, but I might consider using it for my spouse and myself.

    I vote for sticking w/Standard Time (no switching)

    re: tRump – hoping to see handcuffs; after conviction, I hope they do a “Murdaugh” on him – shaved head will go well w/orange jumpsuit.

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  34. annie said on March 20, 2023 at 5:24 pm

    I’d like to see deSantis win the nomination if only to humiliate trump. Then of course I’d like deSantis to lose badly to —who? I don’t see the dems with any viable candidate at the moment. Biden seems too old & Harris, not popular.

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  35. Scout said on March 20, 2023 at 5:49 pm

    By mutual agreement, nothing weird or stalker-y, my wife and I track each other. I track her because she often hikes by herself on desert trails and she tracks me to time meals and because I often drive alone for long distances. One time after we had an argument and I left the house I turned it off temporarily. It’s really that easy. I also monitor my Mom (at her request) because she lives alone and is not comfortable driving.

    annie @34 – I’m interested in how you came to the conclusions you have about Biden’s age and Harris’s popularity. I think Joe will do just fine in ’24. His approval rating continues to improve now that (normal) people are experiencing the effects of his policies, as well as witnessing the complete dysfunction of the GQP House.

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  36. Deborah said on March 20, 2023 at 6:02 pm

    Scout, I agree I’m still with Joe, he’s very fit and vital, and he’s doing a great job. I’ll be with him in 2024 all the way.

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  37. Ann said on March 20, 2023 at 6:05 pm

    I can’t imagine tracking people’s phones, but friends did it when she was driving solo to from the U.P. to Florida for a funeral and they both found it reassuring.

    This article just showed up,, suggesting that being a helicopter parent is really the lazy way out because it takes effort to teach a kid independence.

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  38. Joe Kobiela said on March 20, 2023 at 6:11 pm

    Back in the day before Indiana joined the 21st century we didn’t change our clocks, working third shift during the summer it would start to get light around 3:30-4:00am what good was that? As things stand now the kids still go to school in the dark in the depth of winter so what’s a couple more months of it being dark and remember if Indiana changed to central time be ready for it to be dark at 4:30 in the afternoon now the kids will be getting off the bus in the gloom.
    Pilot Joe

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  39. ROGirl said on March 20, 2023 at 6:36 pm

    I started feeling like crap last night (achy, sinus headache), it got worse throughout the day. I did 2 covid tests and I’m positive. People at work have been getting sick, but no mention of the c word.

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  40. Heather said on March 20, 2023 at 6:43 pm

    Embryolisse is good stuff. I think I’ll get some more when my current supply of Creme de la Mer (generously supplied by a friend) is finished. I have also noticed my skin getting drier, and I started using an oil-based cleanser in the morning. It helps.

    I’m also curious about the Klorane conditioner!

    I’ll believe the Trump arrest when I see it. That said, I do have a bottle of Champagne in the fridge I will bust out if it happens.

    No to the location tracking, unless there are special circumstances, like the meeting up in an unfamiliar location Nancy mentioned.

    Oh, and the Amazon issue–I’m all for buying local, but we live in a society where most of us have to work more to survive and the demands on our time only seem to grow. I certainly don’t have time to drive to two or three hardware stores or whatever on a Saturday to find something specific I need.

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  41. Dorothy said on March 20, 2023 at 6:57 pm

    Ten years ago when our daughter asked us to get the app to track each other, I know she had a legitimate reason to request it. But I’ll be damned if I can remember now what it was. Her brother was in Afghanistan at the time, she lived in Norfolk, so perhaps she felt like she needed to keep an eye on her parents who were 55 at the time, in case we had some kind of emergency. Anyway, we did it but it really wasn’t anything we paid much attention to, unless we or she were driving to see each other, and you could watch the progress of the trip via the app.

    When our son got home from his deployment, I remember our daughter kind of eagerly told him about the three of us using the app, and thought he’d willingly go along with it. “No. That’s what texting is for.” was his reply.

    There was a time in the last 4-5 years when Mike had some kind of medical issue that sent us to the ER. Daughter had happened to call us on our land line and we didn’t answer. I think our phones were silenced in my purse and we didn’t know she had called. So she looked at the app and could see we were at the ER – thereby causing her a good deal of worry. Eventually I did call her but she was a little put out that I didn’t call her sooner.

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  42. Mark P said on March 21, 2023 at 1:28 am

    Here in Georgia, Trump’s lawyers filed a motion to prohibit any evidence from the special grand jury from being used, and to basically kick the Fulton County DA and the judge off his case. They said the special grand jury was unconstitutional. Sounds to me like they got their law degrees from the Trump school of law. Unfortunately it might delay the indictment process, which is probably their actual intent.

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  43. Suzanne said on March 21, 2023 at 7:45 am

    I admit that a tracking app would have been helpful when my kids were in college. When they traveled from home to campus, we always asked them to call when they arrived but they often forgot which, of course, activated the parental worry gene. With a tracker, I would have had my mind put at ease.

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  44. Deborah said on March 21, 2023 at 8:04 am

    I was surprised to read that 92 year old Rupert Murdoch was engaged to be married again, I thought he was still married to Jerry Hall. This will be his 5th marriage, his wife to be is around 66. He said he and his bride to be will enjoy living the second half of their lives together. His former former wife Wendy Deng is now 54, her daughters with Murdoch are 19 and 20ish. Time flies.

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  45. basset said on March 21, 2023 at 9:02 am

    Looks like we might have a whole day in Boston on the way back, tell me more about where we might go… this is months out btw.

    And… how did the band do at SXSW? Major label signing, big advance?

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  46. JodiP said on March 21, 2023 at 9:31 am

    bassett, the Boston Public library does a high tea. I have no idea if you’d be into this, but it’s the first thing that came to mind

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  47. alex said on March 21, 2023 at 9:35 am

    Deborah, it’s amazing there’s a woman at any age who’d fuck that disgusting geezer for any amount of money.

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  48. basset said on March 21, 2023 at 2:14 pm

    JodiP, we surely would be interested in tea… will be coming from London though, probably will do one there. I may not pass the library’s “smart casual” dress code either, not even completely sure what that is. Carhartt khakis are casual, I guess, but are they smart? New Balance sneakers? Polo shirts from Tractor Supply?

    Main purpose of the trip is to see the James Herriot part of Britain, and again, this is quite a ways out so we are not giving away when we won’t be home. Last time we went to England, we were told not on any account to wear jeans because they would mark us as American tourists and potential victims. Still not sure about that one.

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  49. Jeff Borden said on March 21, 2023 at 2:51 pm


    I follow Shadow Show on Facebook. They thanked the SXSW fans for their enthusiasm, which suggested to me they did quite well at the festival. I’ve seen them live at the Empty Bottle in Chicago last summer and they put on a great show. . .they make a lot of noise with just three musicians. And they have style to burn. . .a very cool look to go with their tunes. Honestly, I would seek them out again regardless of my 45 year friendship with the proprieties.

    Re: the Australian bastard marrying again at 92, my guess is her attraction to him is M-O-N-E-Y, though I’ll bet he has a badass prenuptial agreement in effect. His politics are more hideous then his physical looks, but that’s not saying much.

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  50. David C said on March 21, 2023 at 3:15 pm

    New Balance sneeks are appropriate for any and all occasions, Basset.

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  51. Jeff Gill said on March 21, 2023 at 5:20 pm

    Wait, what about Sketchers?

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  52. Julie Robinson said on March 21, 2023 at 5:56 pm

    Sketchers? Those are no good to those of us with fitting…challenges. Although these days I’m mostly wearing my Stegmann clogs while waiting for the last of the swelling to subside from the broken ankle. I made the mistake of wearing regular shoes to church and by the middle of the sermon I was feeling the pinch. (Too long; daughter cranked up.)

    basset, that sounds like a lovely, lovely trip. Herriot speaks so movingly of the area’s beauty in the books, and of course both TV series showed it to great advantage.

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  53. Deborah said on March 21, 2023 at 6:48 pm

    Jerry Hall said it was Murdoch’s kids who caused their divorce, she was probably trying to squeeze too much dough out of him like a typical gold digger and the kids had already watched a big chunk of what they wanted to get, go to Wendy Deng and her kids with Murdoch. The pie can only be split so many ways until it’s meager.

    Wear white Stan Smith sneakers, you can’t go wrong, they were the rage in Paris in the fall when we were there.

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  54. Julie Robinson said on March 21, 2023 at 7:12 pm

    The feel good story at the end of the news was about a pair of endangered turtles who finally reproduced. Mr. Pickle is 90 and Mrs. Pickle in her 50’s. So there’s hope for Murdoch!

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  55. Dorothy said on March 21, 2023 at 9:09 pm

    Just today I wore my new pair of black with rainbow threading Skechers for the first time. I love mine. The first pair I bought I wore for two weeks when we traipsed all over Ireland & Scotland in September 2019. That pair is pretty worn out now but they work for dog walks when it’s raining.

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  56. basset said on March 21, 2023 at 11:30 pm

    Smart casual… let’s just say it means intelligent casual, or sensible shoes by another name. New Balances or Hi-Tecs with orthopedic insoles cover about 99-percent of my life. The Skechers I’ve had seemed slippery on certain pavements. No Stan Smith sneakers either, anything that’s “all the rage” anywhere in the world is gonna look ridiculous on me.

    Wonder if I can still find Bata Bullets anywhere, or Red Ball Jets?

    Watching the recent All Creatures seasons ruined us for the BBC series from the 70s, due to both the characters and the production. Been working our way through Yorkshire Vet, though, and saying “look, we’re gonna see that!” every time there’s a wide shot or an aerial.

    Meanwhile, waiting for Shadow Show to come around again… that gig in Nashville last week was indeed in just about the worst conditions possible.

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  57. Dexter Friend said on March 21, 2023 at 11:58 pm

    The new Sketchers that you can just jump into without any touching look good, and are even being marketed in VFW Magazine, which mostly old bald and grey-haired veterans read. Other brands have jumped into that market I see. i wear custom inserts leather shoes with 2 Velcro tabs because the VA springs for them and they are comfortable and I no longer wear any athletic shoes at all.
    As a kid I and every boy wore Red Ball Jets. In high school basketball we had to wear Chuck Taylor high tops, but for my senior year, when a salesman came to the school offering the varsity a choice of Chucks or Pro Keds. I was a rebel, and wore Pro Keds as I sat the bench for 90% of the time.
    Thanks, Basset. I hired an independent adjuster from Michigan to assess the damage. Now the haggling begins between him and the company.

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  58. jerry said on March 22, 2023 at 3:05 am


    Don’t worry about jeans marking you as American when you’re over here. I wear them most of the time and nobody has ever thought I came from the States. Timeshare touts used to tag me as German but as soon as I opened my mouth they realised their mistake!

    Are you spending any time in London while you’re over?


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  59. David C said on March 22, 2023 at 5:42 am

    I like my Sketchers steel toes. At least they’re better than my old steel toe shit kickers. A week working line support in those made my legs feel like they were going to fall off. I’ll always be a New Balance guy though. I thought my favorite 624s went out of production so I bought 608s. They fit my feet but they’re not quite right in other ways. I recently heard 624s are coming back and I can’t wait for my current shoes to wear out.

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  60. Jeff Gill said on March 22, 2023 at 7:27 am

    I may loathe Murdoch for his business ethics & journalistic nihilism, but I have to respect his optimism. And that of his fifth bride, who said “In perspective, it’s not my first rodeo. Getting near 70 means being in the last half.” Well, I can’t expect her to say two-minute warning. In that same spirit her intended replied “We’re both looking forward to spending the second half of our lives together.” At 92, that’s somewhere between denial and delusion, but I hear a lot of that these days.

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  61. LAMary said on March 22, 2023 at 3:46 pm

    My cats, Hero and Potato, like to sleep on my bed during the day. I went to my bedroom to get a sweater a little while ago. I went to pet the cats and Potato, my very favorite cat, the smartest cat I’ve ever had, was dead. He wasn’t old or sick. He ate his breakfast this morning and jumped up for a cuddle afterwards. Looking up sudden death in young cats online I figure it was cardiomyopathy which can have no symptoms. There’s also the possibility that he caught a rodent that had eaten poison. Potato liked to eat at least a part of whatever he caught and rodents do occasionally get into my old house via a do it yourselfer’s half assed fireplace. It’s blocked off but once in a while something gets in. I know a few of you are cat lovers so you know how awful this feels.

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  62. susan said on March 22, 2023 at 3:58 pm

    LAMary, how shocking and sad. I’m so sorry.

    The same thing happened to one of my nephew’s kitties. He stepped out of the shower one morning before work, and his sweet not-old kitty was lying on the floor outside the bathroom, dead. Just like that. No symptoms, no warnings. That shattered and mystified him. He took the kitty to the vet, but there was nothing to be done. I can’t remember what the diagnosis was, though, or if they were even able to provide one. Awful.

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  63. Scout said on March 22, 2023 at 4:28 pm

    Oh no, LA Mary. I am so very sorry. What a terrible shock. Sending light and peace to you and Hero.

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  64. Suzanne said on March 22, 2023 at 5:13 pm

    LAMary, I am sorry. This happened to my sister-in-law’s cat a few years ago. He was fine until all the sudden he wasn’t. The vet said it was likely a heart attack.
    It’s so hard to lose a pet.

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  65. Julie Robinson said on March 22, 2023 at 5:33 pm

    Mary, I’m so, so sorry about Potato. It sounds like you have lots of good to remember him by. Sending you love and hugs.

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  66. tajalli said on March 22, 2023 at 5:34 pm

    LAMary, so sorry for your loss. Losing a pet can be enormously sad. Take care.

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  67. Deborah said on March 22, 2023 at 7:02 pm

    So sorry LAMary, what a shock to have to absorb. It must be extra sad when you can’t prepare yourself ahead as you can when you have a cherished pet put down. Take care.

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  68. Heather said on March 22, 2023 at 7:22 pm

    Sorry to hear about your cat, LA Mary. I lost my beloved cat recently too: I had to put Posy down last week after a little more than a year of treatment for terminal cancer. She was only nine. I had ample time to prepare, but either way, it’s heartbreaking.

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  69. Dorothy said on March 22, 2023 at 8:59 pm

    Oh Mary I’m so very sorry! In 43 years of being a pet owner, I’ve never been in a situation like that. The suddenness has to be devastating. Sending oodles of hugs.

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  70. diane said on March 22, 2023 at 9:16 pm

    LA Mary, I am so sorry about Potato. Losing a loved pet is always so hard but this way has to be exceptionally difficult.

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  71. LAMary said on March 22, 2023 at 9:18 pm

    The suddenness definitely was a terrible shock. My sons both came home for a while. Potato was everyone’s favorite cat. He was big. Fourteen pounds. I adopted him from the local shelter. He had just aged out of the “kitten” category and the shelter folks seemed happy to reduce the adoption fee to zero. He was a bit wild for the first month or so but once he got over that he was a great cat. Hero is baffled by his absence. They always ate next to each other and Hero was looking for him before he ate his food. Georgia the dog seems to know he’s gone too. My sons went outside in the pouring rain to dig a hole in the backyard next to where two other cats are buried. Potato is there now too with a half barrel of geraniums and a couple of potato plants on top of his spot to keep the raccoons from digging him up.

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  72. Julie Robinson said on March 22, 2023 at 11:07 pm

    Oh no, Heather, not you too. I’m so, so sorry about Posy. I’m not sure which is worse, when you know it’s coming, or when it’s completely unexpected. Love and hugs to you.

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  73. LAMary said on March 23, 2023 at 12:02 am

    I saw Posy’s pictures and she looked like such a sweet girl. It’s tough to lose good companions.

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  74. Dexter Friend said on March 23, 2023 at 3:44 am

    Sad day, Mary. My cat Friendo passed 38 days ago but he had lived over 17 years and he just lay down and passed away. Utility and cable companies have riddled my yard with so many buried lines I do not dare dig any holes without calling and having an employee come and check where the wires and cables are. I had Friendo cremated. I miss him like crazy. Having Pogo the Labbie eases the pain. Best wishes.

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  75. David C said on March 23, 2023 at 6:00 am

    So sorry, LAMary. Twice we’ve lost one of our cats and had their cat pal live on. The surviving cat’s distress is heartbreaking.

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  76. ROGirl said on March 23, 2023 at 8:02 am

    Sorry about your kitty, LA Mary.

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  77. Dorothy said on March 23, 2023 at 8:13 am

    Oh Heather I’m so sorry! That is heartbreaking. Our Lucy faced the same fate at about the same age. I miss her, but truly do not miss her habit in the last couple years of her life of getting ‘approximately’ into the litter box to poo. I mean she’d go within 3-4 feet of the box, not just on the edge or definitely inside the box. It was disgusting and made me not love her as much as she should have been loved.

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  78. JodiP said on March 23, 2023 at 9:20 am

    I’m so sorry, Mary. He sounds like a great cat and we all know he was cherished and loved.

    About 5 years ago, we adopted 13-year-old cats who were a bonded pair. Hadley was immediately super chill and a great cuddler. Cadfael was very shy and would take a long time to become comfortable. Sadly, 2 months after we brought them home, I came home from work one day to find Hadley dead. Cadfael was distraught and led me to where he was.

    Heather, my condolences again for Posy–she was so cute!

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  79. basset said on March 23, 2023 at 11:03 am

    Yes, Jerry, a few days in London… the Royal Mews and the aircraft museum at Duxford for a start.

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  80. Deborah said on March 23, 2023 at 12:10 pm

    Nancy, I meant to tell you that I received the Embryolisse moisturizing cream the day after I ordered it from Amazon and I love it. I got the version for aging, extra dry skin, which I ordered the day you posted about the brand. Thanks for mentioning it, it will now be something I keep in stock and use every day.

    Trump sure has a passel of lawyers, and they all look the way you would expect his lawyers to look. While he rakes in a lot of money from his base, those lawyers must be laughing all the way to the bank.

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  81. 4dbirds said on March 23, 2023 at 6:18 pm

    So sorry for the bad news on the fur babies. My guys are getting old and I’m not looking forward to the inevitable. I don’t think I will replace them. I don’t want to burden any of my children with pets they don’t want. I don’t want anyone tracking me. That’s all I need is my husband bothering me because I’m playing poker longer than he feels like I should.

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  82. 4dbirds said on March 23, 2023 at 6:34 pm

    I too ordered the extra dry, aging skin cream. Now to try the hair conditioner. 🙂 I don’t understand why people get married over and over again. If my marriage ends by death or divorce, there WILL NOT be another one. Ewwwwwww, how do you get used to someone else and all their habits at my age?

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  83. Sherri said on March 23, 2023 at 6:45 pm

    That public charter school in Florida that fired the principal over Michelangelo’s David bilks itself as a “classical” school, by which it means it teaches the Hillsdale curriculum.

    Oy vey.

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  84. Jeff Borden said on March 23, 2023 at 6:46 pm

    Floriduh follies. . .again.

    You can’t make this shit up. A private charter school in Tallahassee, which utilizes curriculum created by the very right-wing Hillsdale College in Michigan, has fired the principal after a few parents complained about showing Michelangelo’s David during a class on Renaissance art. What’s funny is that Hillsdale is absolutely fanatical in its view that Western civilization is THE civilization, which is why the 6th grade classes explore Renaissance art and not, say, Chinese art. But that little marble penis…whoa, baby…it’s just too much for these parents to stomach. So, buh-bye, principal!

    Can a country die of terminal stupidity?

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  85. Brandon said on March 23, 2023 at 7:17 pm

    More about David.

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  86. Julie Robinson said on March 23, 2023 at 7:42 pm

    And here in Orlando an after-school program was canceled after a Moms for Liberty member objected to a drag queen coming to an after-school meeting of an LGBTQ club. The kids issued the invitation, and it was a fund raiser for a ending hunger program. Oy veh.

    But that pales next to the $57,000 bill my mom just got for 22 hours in the hospital, 36,000 just for a CAT scan. Her part is $450, but still.

    Am happy with my Clinique facial products but will still like to know which Klorane to get for gray hair dried out from the pool?

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  87. FDChief said on March 23, 2023 at 8:35 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss, Mary. I’ve outlived so many of these little souls it’s almost surprising how hard it is to lose them. But it always is.

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  88. Deborah said on March 23, 2023 at 9:29 pm

    When did this freak out of classical sculpture start? How bizarre, next art museums will be restricted to adults only. This has all got to stop, the book banning, all of it. It is beyond ridiculous.

    I listened to a podcast today where Margaret Atwood was being interviewed partly about the banning of Handmaids Tale in some Virginia schools. It was an excellent interview, I’ll try to find a link.

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  89. Sherri said on March 23, 2023 at 10:11 pm

    Remember when John Ashcroft covered up the Spirit of Justice statue because it has bare breasts and he didn’t like having to do press conferences in front of it?

    Really, read the interview with school board chair Barney Bishop III (his real name, I couldn’t make it up), it’s bonkers. He allows that there might be some age before adulthood where showing the full David might be okay, but certainly not to kindergarteners, or 2nd graders, where showing just the head should be good enough.

    Oh, and just saying the word “pornography” in a sixth grade class is a big red flag.

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  90. Dave said on March 23, 2023 at 10:18 pm

    DeSantis would like to put the entire nation on the Hillsdale curriculum. Look out.

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  91. David C said on March 24, 2023 at 5:44 am

    They want to put cargo pants and a polo shirt on it and make it Michelangelo’s Dave.

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  92. ROGirl said on March 24, 2023 at 7:37 am

    I’ve probably mentioned this before, but in Michelangelo’s Last Judgment on the wall behind the alter in the Sistine Chapel, God’s anatomy is draped with a white cloth of sorts that Michelangelo didn’t put there (there are cover-ups on other figures as well). Too much naked flesh to be looking at during mass, I guess. Censorship of art has a long history, don’t get me started.

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  93. Mark P said on March 24, 2023 at 10:33 am

    Wait a minute! You mean god has a penis? What does he use it for? Oh, yeah, there was that thing with Mary.

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  94. Heather said on March 24, 2023 at 11:08 am

    Ironically a copy of David stands in a piazza in Florence, for innocent babies of all ages to see.

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