Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Dear Anonymous,

Sorry it took me so long to reply to this- it's Christmas and I have a lot of holiday hours. But I have been meaning to reply since the day I saw your comment.

I don't want you to think I'm a heartless bastard. I'm not. But I also lived through the whole McDonald's Coffee In My Lap thing and it was one of those moments I knew the world had gone crazy. Someone put coffee in their lap and spilled it on their junk and sued McDonalds for a gazillion dollars. As if they didn't know coffee is hot. Seriously?

And there's this "who can I sue?" billboard on 75 Southbound.

And you're right, I don't have kids. I probably won't ever. But I do have dogs. I have had dogs for going on a quarter of a century and I've also worked in retail for over ten years. I'm not saying dogs and customers are the same as having kids, but they're the best I can go with, really.

And before I get any farther, I feel really bad for the parents that they lost their kids. Any death is sad and important and meaningful. I'm not trying to take away from that.

But what I meant in my blog entry is where has personal responsibility gone? Kids drown in swimming pools and you don't see pools getting closed down- they get gates and locks and I've even seen these wrist band things that sound an alarm in water. Kids put things in power outlets and the power company doesn't issue a recall- you buy those little plastic things that go in outlets. Kids eat stuff under the sink- you call poison control and get lock things for drawers or put rubber bands around the knobs.

Now, what I saw on the news for this blind thing was this weird roman blind where it had loops of string at the bottom to draw the blinds up. I have never seen blinds like that in real life. I also saw normal style blinds with strands of cords- they weren't linked at the bottom and weren't long enough to reach the windowsill. In my house we have some sort of cordless roman blind.

My first thought seeing the regular blinds with the hanging strands is, 'can't you just tie the cords in a bow higher up?' because I have been to houses like that. It never occurred to me why, but hey, there you go.

The other thing that bugged me about this case, which you pointed out in that parents can't be everywhere, was where were the parents and where were the kids? Say you left your kid in one of those pen things- there's a loud thump from the other room as the kid climbs out. Then the kid has to toddle across the room a bit until he happens upon the unknotted blinds, and then there's the loud rattling of blinds while the kid plays with them before something bad happens. This is easily ten to fifteen minutes, in my mind.

When I hear a noise upstairs and I don't see my dogs the first thing I do is yell their names- at which point you usually hear them panic and tip over the garbage can. Or I go look to see what they're up to. When I hear a noise I find out what it is, immediatly, because they're dogs. They might be up to anything. I don't wait several minutes to go investigate.

Other story about the dogs- I took Bailey to the petstore and because she was well behaved I bought her this sausage style dog food. And while I was trying to break it into pieces she ate the whole thing in one bite and you could see it get lodged in her throat. And she looked at me like oh my god and started choking and I reached into her mouth and grabbed the sausage and pulled it out. And she promptly tried to eat it again.

They're dogs. They have no idea what they're doing. They'd probably eat laundry soap if it was on the floor. That's why you have to keep an eye on them.

And what I can't fathom with these kids and blinds cases is what the parents were doing. Sleeping? Sure, I guess so. I'm a pretty light sleeper though. In the other room? There are those little walkie talkie things. At my Dad's house when my little brother was kept in a pen, we just dragged the pen to whatever room we were in.

Or when they buy plastic outlet blockers and things to keep drawers shut they could tie the cords up in a bow.

Friday, December 18, 2009

War of the Worlds

Finished "Days of Grass" this morning- it'd been a long time since I'd been to a used book store and found a Tanith Lee novel I hadn't already read or owned. Found this one over at Book Nook about a week ago and only just picked it up last night. It's pretty much War of the Worlds, if she'd written it first- aliens come down and take over the planet and humanity goes to hide underground and the heroine sneaks up now and then to see what surface life is like. And then she gets captured by the aliens and taken to a city they've made. It's good, but it's not Tales of the Flat Earth.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Logic? Lolwut?

Apparently there is a gigantic recall on blinds today. Because... Get this...

Kids can strangle themselves on the cords.


Who knew?


Sorry blog, haven't been able to think of anything to write about so it's been a slow month.

I did this big knitting project the other way and misread the directions (which weren't that clear) and two days worth of work is all wrong. Mom made a scene while I unwound the knitting so I could redo it- it was like I was painting over the Mona Lisa.

Haven't done any Christmas shopping, though two knitting projects are done. Two more to do, I think. Or three. I should probably make a list tomorrow.

Made up a character to play in my friend's Blue Rose game. Blue Rose is called Romantic Fantasy- I'm not fond of that name, but whatever- it's the difference between most Dungeons and Dragons games and most fantasy novels written in the last twenty years. More abandoned moonlit temples and court intrigue than undead vikings coming over the mountain to kidnap the mayor's daughter. Drew my character on the back of my sheet- it's amazing how well I can draw for someone who can't actually draw.

Saw Ninja Assassin and The Princess and the Frog. I don't know if my childhood memories of Disney are just rosy colored from that age- I don't watch Disney anymore- but when I heard that Princess and the Frog was the best since Lion King I was a little excited about seeing it. Went and saw it with Amie and Joel and I don't know what reviewer made that comparison or what they were on at the time, but they're not even in the same league. I can think of songs from Lion King (The Circle of Life, Can you feel the love tonight, Hakuna Matata) or Aladdin (A Whole New World) or The Little Mermaid (Part of Your World)- I can't recall any songs from Princess and the Frog besides "Almost There" and I've got nothing other than the title. I guess it was ok. I don't know. It was pretty. It wasn't Miyazaki.

(On that note, Ponyo rocked my face off. And now I really want to go watch Spirited Away again.)

However, Ninja Assassin was everything it promised- fifteen gallons of blood in the human body and it's all under high pressure and the ninjas have lots of sharp pointy things. It had a neat story too- though I think I thought it'd be a bit more since I saw JMS in the credits. There was a lot of back flipping, too. And the ninja hero guy spends a lot of time working out in his apartment in sleep pants.

I had a weird thought at the used book store the other day. I was over at Book Nook since some friends live near there, and I wanted to see if they had something I couldn't find at Book Exchange and I realized there's some things you just can't find. Oddly enough, there's about eighty something Outlanders books by James Axler and at least that many Deathlands books- you're lucky if there's more than five in a used book store. Where do they go? I have no idea. I never see them anywhere. However, there's usually at least one Zecheria Sitchin book and so far I've managed to collect nearly the whole series from Book Exchange alone. And I realized no matter what used book store I go to I pretty much always find something really interesting sounding that is book three in a five book series- and you are never ever going to see the other four books. It's like they don't exist. There's something called the Silver Thorn or Silver Throne series written by someone with a last name that starts with "Mc" and I see it every used book store I go to, and it's never the first one.