Live and Learn

DMV My first mistake was procrastinating mailing in my DMV registration renewal form. I’ll get to it later. No rush. They give you a couple months to complete the task anyway. So two days before it was due, I noticed it was due.Don't be late No problem, I’ll just register via the internet. Easy peasy. When I went online, I clicked on the first option that appeared, erroneously assuming it was the DMV site. That was my second mistake. Unbeknownst to me, it was a look-alike website. So I entered the numerous informational junk they ask for. When I reached the end and was about to hit REGISTER NOW, I noticed a couple fees I’d never seen before; one for $29 and another for $8. I thought, what’s that about?fees ahead Continue reading

Rethinking Spiders

spider againI’ve never been afraid of spiders.

In fact, I don’t use pesticides to eradicate what many consider pesky creatures — the crawly things that visit my home. I have pets so I try to avoid poisons, nor do I want to kill any creepy looking critters. I’m weird like that.

Consequently, my neighbors’ crawly things prefer to come to me where it’s safe but apparently not so sound. That’s because I often find my little friends taking refuge inside my house…in the bathroom Jacuzzi, the corner of the living room, or especially in the garage. In the insect world, word is out where I live. And word travels fast.

I keep Kleenex handy for scooping up delicate insects to place outside. Paper towels are too rough; I might inadvertently squish a critter and have to contend with the guilt. Now don’t get me wrong; I’m not fanatic about spiders. But hey, they can’t help it if they’re disgusting looking. Besides, who am I to judge? I’m no prize either.

Kleenex

At the ready

Continue reading

A Close Call

If you had your hand on my chest right now, yes it’d be inappropriate, but the point is, you’d feel my heart beating like I’d just seen a ghost. I’d love that, actually. Seeing a ghost, that is. But the reason my heart is on overdrive is because my 4 mutts were just attacked by another dog.

I almost talked myself out of taking Callie, Skip, Wally and Taffy for a stroll because, well, it’s called pure laziness. My days have been so packed lately that when I drag my weary bones home, the thought of moving from my cozy chair is not an inviting one.

Callie and Wally

Taffy

Skip

Still, guilt won me over. How can I relax when 8 eyeballs are glued to my every move? I felt their stares even as I pretended to be asleep. But my unsympathetic mutts were having none of it. So I begrudgingly took them for a walk. Continue reading

In My Mind’s Eye: Remembering Dad

Here’s my annual Father’s Day post, adapted from an article I wrote in 1997 for the San Francisco Chronicle about the relationship I shared with my dad. Here’s to fathers everywhere…There’s an image I have captured in my mind. I’m in my car in front of the home my parents have shared for most of their 45 married years. Mom and Dad are standing on the front porch.

From the street, I can see the huge eucalyptus tree in their backyard, silhouetted against the evening sky. It’s gently swaying in the warm breeze while the full moon illuminates the manicured lawn. My parents are smiling and waving as I drive away after a visit.

Mom lives alone now that Dad is in an Alzheimer’s nursing facility, so that scenario has changed. But it never does in my mind. My parents always stood on the porch to wave good-bye when I left. Even in pouring rain, they still stood in the open doorway together. I always looked back and returned their waves. Continue reading

Where Are We Again?

don't foget A couple weeks ago I divulged my innate ability to get lost (even with GPS). This week, why not tackle my skill at losing things? Things like my keys, my mind and my glasses. I thought I’d slip in the losing my mind reference without much notice, but seems you were paying attention.

My nickname in high school was Skippy because I was, well, a bit scattered and yes, forgetful. Still am. Friends even went so far as to choose that name as my personalized license plate. Motorists thought I loved peanut butter or had a passion for skipping. Little did they know. I’ve been know to forget having met someone. Unbelievable, huh? Sometimes I don’t recall places I’ve supposedly visited. I’ve even watched an entire movie then realized, as the credits rolled, that I’d seen it before. I’ve always been this way, which in a sense gives me comfort. Continue reading