Saturday, April 29, 2006


The forsythia, the plum and the daffodil are all in bloom, it's been warm and sunny for weeks, the lawn needs a trim . . . Amelia declares it officially SPRING at 39 Bonnyvale Road.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Al Franken came to town

It was worth arranging for day care, rescheduling my class and getting in line an hour early. Al Franken came to do his Air America radio show live from the local Latchis Theater and Lois got us tickets (free). A quick google search of Al is a perfect way to understand just why I like him so much. You'll find endless conservative rants and abusive comments about how he is "what's wrong with America". You won't find a single reasoned argument for why this would be so. Al Franken drives conservatives crazy by taking them seriously but inquiring into their thinking (what there is of it). Unlike drug-addled Rush and Sponge-fantasy O'Reilly, Franken doesn't rant so much as ask questions and (as in the title of his book) highlight the lies that we're being fed daily, all in a low key sort of grumbly way. We love him.

The theater was filled to capacity. When guest Bernie Sanders (Vermont's single congressman who is currently running to fill one of our two Senate seats) entered the theater he got a standing ovation. Vermont LOVES Bernie -- an outspoken, direct and funny politician. One of the few non-millionaire members of Congress. After sitting through three hours of the show I felt, for the first time in ages, a sense of hope about the direction of our country. There are people out there who realize just how dangerously far down a foolish path we've been led. It was worth spending a gloriously sunny warm Friday afternoon inside a theater to get that sense of hope and to sit with 750 people (of our town of 12,000) cheering the idea that goverment should be competent, open, honest and work to the good of the people rather than the corporations. From inside an old theater we got a much needed breath of fresh air.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The rules for Easter

The ecclesiastical rules for the date for Easter for those using the Gregorian calendar are:

• Easter falls on the first Sunday following the first ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or after the day of the vernal equinox;
• this particular ecclesiastical full moon is the 14th day of a tabular lunation (new moon); and
• the vernal equinox is fixed as March 21.

As a result, this year it fell on April 16th. Next year it will be the 8th. In '08 it'll be March 23, in '09 April 12. But regardless of which particular Sunday it falls, somehow the Easter bunny is able to figure it out. What I can't figure out is the relationship between the Easter Bunny and the Easter Eggs. Given all the eggs shouldn't it be an Easter Chicken that sneeks in and hides them? I tried this theory out on Amelia and she put her little four-year-old hand on her hip like a veteran teen, flicked her hair back and said "Nooooo Daddy. It is NOT an Easter Chicken. It's and Easter BUNNY."

No fooling her. The bunny came. He (she?) hid the eggs, dutifully ate the carrots and lettuce that was left out (so much healthier than Santa!) and as an added bonus tossed a bunch of plastic eggs filled with healthy snacks or jelly beans all around the lawn. To delight Iain several of the plastic spheres were not eggs but balls: basket, soccer and base.

It was a beautiful day with the first buds budding and the Magnolias in full bloom.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Amelia's Birthday

On an unusually warm April 5th day Amelia celebrated turning four. Friends came, cake was eaten, an extended game of "tickle monster" was played (for which Dad was recruited for the lead role) and lots of running around outside was enjoyed.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Lois and Dan go to NYC

At the end of his visit, Dan and I took a short trip to NYC to see The Lion King, go to David Letterman and run wildly through Manhattan. After a childhood pretending that our livingroom was on Broadway, it was a dream come true to be there with Dan, even if we were on the "wrong" side of the stage doors .

Here's Dan on the ferry to Staten Island. The two of us at Rockefeller Center and me in Times Square. (The first time I went to NYC I was living in Tokyo and found myself thinking things like, THIS is New York - the Big Apple??? Where are all the people? Where are all the lights? Where's all the nightlife? This time, coming from West Brattleboro, I was duly impressed.)

I can't hold back the information that I accidently used lotion instead of shampoo in our hotel - with a resulting very bad hair day. No one on the Spamalot poster seemed to care. Whew.