Seriously, I’m out of pans

As we are all aware, Hurricane Sandy swept across the eastern seaboard earlier this week. My thoughts are with those in the hardest hit areas in New York and New Jersey.

That said, I think it’s okay for me to find a little humor in my own personal storm-related inconvenience. Behold, the patented Hames Strategic Leak Management System!

Hames Patented Strategic Leak Management System

Other than that, everything is fine. The storm sort of threw everyone for a loop, so planned Halloween-related project postings didn’t actually get done and will be delayed. Meanwhile, stay safe everyone!


Hurricane Sandy sucks out loud

I have always hated thunderstorms. I loathe hurricanes beyond imagining. While I am very sheltered here in the DC area, I have family on the coast in NJ which is getting knocked around quite a bit, and friends in low-lying areas of Maryland and Virginia. Keep safe, you guys!

Meanwhile, I’m going to initiate my strategic rain management system, because it appears I’ve sprung a few leaks.

Transmissions from The Spidereen this week may be delayed due to bitchy hurricanes.


Another Tale for Halloween


Wade Davis is a Canadian anthropologist and ethnobotanist. He has written extensively about culture, botany, the environment and he has become a noted photographer. He has done hundreds of interviews, inspired many documentaries, and even was the source for three X-files shows. And Wade Davis has met a zombie. Not the made-up kind delighting so many Americans nowadays, but the very real kind. A poor, unschooled man who was victimized by his family.

Back in the 80s Wade Davis wrote about his experience investigating the zombification process in Haiti. His book The Serpent & the Rainbow propelled him to worldwide fame and a Hollywood movie followed in 1988.

Drawn to Haiti by legends concerning the existence of zombies, Davis wanted to investigate the botanical or chemical aspects of the phenomena. Soon he was drawn into the vodoun culture of the Haitian witchdoctor (bokor). Escape the cities of…

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My Klutzy is klutzy

So, we all know I’m a klutz. I can be a klutz just lying around, talking on the phone. For example:

I was talking on the phone with one of my friends over the weekend. We were just nattering on about nothing in particular. I had the phone on speaker because I was putting away some clothes. And then I got lazy, flopped down on my bed, and didn’t bother to switch the phone off speaker.

I’m laying there, chit-chatting, holding the phone directly above my face. For those of you that know me personally, this is about the time your face makes the pre-emptive cringe expression.

So, there I am, innocently believing my fingers are not made of butter, when the phone slips from my hand and clocks me right in the brow-bone. I mutter “ouch,” because hard plastic to the face, well, hurts. My friend immediately starts laughing.

This incident reminded me of one time, in my freshman year of college, when I fell out of my chair while on the phone. Do you guys remember the standard desk chairs having little angled feet so you could tilt back on without worry of falling over? Mine had those. I was on the dorm phone, arm wrapped in a disproportionately long cord, laughing and chatting with an entirely different friend. I went to tilt back my chair and miscalculated—I didn’t realize I was already at full-tilt capacity.

The chair slipped and I fell backwards with one of those crazy Goofy yells.



I ended up more or less in the chair, top of my head touching the armoire I had nearly crashed into, arm and left leg tangled in the phone cord, right leg sort of dangling out in space, the receiver a few inches from my fingertips. I was laughing hysterically, because I was a teeny bit stuck in that position. All I could hear on the other end was a frantic “Jackie, Jackie are you okay? What happened?”

I get back on the phone and say: “Now I know what a turtle feels like.”

Flash forward to this past weekend when I was relaying this story to my other friend. She finds it hysterical, too. My laziness wears off and I start putting more clothes away. I put the phone down on the nightstand (still on speaker) so I can, I dunno, fold underwear or something. The phone slips from my fingers AGAIN, ricocheted off the nightstand and slid under the bed.

I had to resist the urge to yell “Oh my God, are you okay?” Of course she was okay. You cannot hurt a disembodied voice. Barely contained laughter drifted out from under the bed.

Well, this incident reminded me of something that happened earlier in the day. I went to put a load of laundry in the washer and rested the pile of clothes on top of the dryer while I opened the washer lid. A sock, apparently dissatisfied with life, leapt from the top of the pile and dove behind the dryer, where I couldn’t reach it without the aid of a stick and skilled acrobatics.

Undeterred, I dump the rest of the laundry in the washer and go find a cat-fishing pole (a stick with a feather on the end). Then I scrambled up on the dryer. The problem here is that there is a hard wooden shelf above my washer and dryer, so I can’t just sit on the thing like you’d think I would be able to do, because otherwise I’d hit my head.

Being a klutz, I know this, and I try to avoid it. Because I’m so freakin’ smart, you guys.

I win at the klutzy. Go. Me.

Instead, I shimmy up on the dryer on my stomach. I brace my right knee against the wall of the laundry room while my left leg dangles off the edge of the dryer, which, by the way, is digging into my thigh the entire time. I manage to snag the sock with the cat-fishing pole, flick into the washer, and slide back to the floor.

It is only in the reciting of this story to my friend, over the phone, that I realize how idiotic I must have looked, butt sticking up in the air, leg dangling precariously over the dryer.

But I amused my friend, and I got the sock. The little bastard.

The lesson here is that if I talk about being klutzy, I actually end up being klutzy.


1,000 Words VIII: The Old Mill

Creepy, right?


With Halloween’s arrival in the next two weeks, I thought I would get everyone in the spirit of The Great Candy Swap with this ever so slightly creepy picture. Tell me a story about this image, in 1,000 words or less, on your blog and link back here in the comments. Or, just tell me a scary story about anything. I want to see what you all can do. You have until next Monday to get your stories up. 🙂