Saturday 9: Valentine

Saturday 9: Valentine (1993)
Unfamiliar with this week’s tune? Hear it here.

This song was specially chosen for the Saturday 9 closest to Valentine’s Day.

1) This is a love song written by Willie Nelson for his young son. Have you sent any Valentines this year to someone you love who isn’t a romantic partner? The only time I really do this is with funny Internet Valentines. I share those with whoever I think would appreciate them.

2) Today that little boy, Lukas, is a singer/songwriter who wrote eight of the songs for the 2018 A Star Is Born soundtrack. Have you seen the Bradley Cooper/Lady Gaga big screen romance? I haven’t, but I do want to.

3) On Valentine’s Day in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell patented the first telephone. Who did you most recently speak to on the phone? The woman from my eye doctor, calling to tell me my contacts were in.

4) Penicillin was also introduced on Valentine’s Day (in 1929). When you get a shot, do you look away when the needle touches your skin? Yeah, it does freak me out a little bit. Not so bad that I can’t handle it, but enough that I don’t want to see it.

5) According to legend, a gift of red roses signifies love and romance. When did you last purchase flowers or plants? Did you buy them for yourself, or someone else? I don’t know, it’s been a while. They were most likely for someone else.

6) This week’s artist, Willie Nelson, can trace his family tree back to the Revolutionary War. Captain John Nelson served with the Minutemen back in 1776. If you could go back in time to witness any great moment in American history, which would you choose? Could I just hop around to concerts?

7) Before he became a musical success, Willie was a door-to-door salesman, peddling first Bibles, then vacuum cleaners. INC magazine tells us that the traits of successful salespeople include resilience and good listening skills. Do you think you’d make a good sales person? Just based on those two traits, yes, but not a single thing about that job appeals to me. I’d hate it.

8) In 1993, when this song came out, Saved by the Bell aired its series finale. Crazy Sam likes to tease her brother because he once admitted to her that he has seen all 86 episodes of this teen sitcom. Is there a show that you believe you’ve seen every episode? Oh, there are a few, especially now in the streaming age. I’ve seen every episode of Lost and The X-Files, for sure, and a few others I’ve watched on Netflix over the years.

9) Random question — We’re having milkshakes! What’s your favorite flavor? Strawberry, but depending on what I’m in the mood for, I could go for chocolate.


Friday 5: QoTD

  1. What kind of drunk are you? Chatty, generally more outgoing. I loosen up some and am more open to things like dancing and karaoke, and I’ll probably tell you anything you want me to.
  2. What’s one of your language-related pet peeves? “Could of” instead of “could have.” You’re wrong. And then someone once tried to tell me that it was their “local dialect.” No, it’s isn’t. You’re confusing the contraction of “‘ve” with “of,” even though they mean two very, very different things.
  3. What would be a good question to ask people you’ve just met, if what you really want to know is what they’re passionate about? You know, an alternative to “What do you do?” or “How do you know so-and-so?” If they could be anywhere in the world doing anything they wanted, where would they go and what would they do? Or if they won the lottery tomorrow–like, a sum so huge that they never had to work again–how would they spend their time? Or even how would they spend the money?
  4. When you get home super tired and super hungry, do you usually eat first or sleep first? If I were only a little bit hungry, I’d just go to sleep. If I’m super hungry, though, I have to eat first, because otherwise, I’ll be uncomfortable. I’ll probably fall asleep anyway, but I really won’t like it. Plus if that’s the case, I was probably out and it’s probably late at night, and if I was out and it’s late at night, I need to put on my jammies and take my makeup off, so another few minutes to scarf down a snack isn’t gonna hurt me.
  5. You’re taking an exam. You aren’t sure about the answer to question 5, but you know it’s either “lions” or “tigers.” You get to question 11 and realize whatever the answer to 5 is, 11 is the other answer. Do you write “lions” as your answer to 5 and 11, thereby ensuring you’ll get one of them right? Or do you write “lions” for 5 and “tigers” for 11, risking two wrong answers but giving you a chance at two right ones? I probably take my chances putting down two different answers, because even though I know I’ll get one right no matter what, I’ll also be annoyed at putting down two of the same thing. I’m also a born gambler, so it’s a risk I’m okay with.

From Friday 5.

Friday 5: Salt Fat Acid Heat

  1. What are some very salty foods you enjoy? God, I over-salt everything. Soups, pretzels, Ramen when I still ate it…
  2. What areas of your life could stand a little fat-trimming? Debt, but that probably goes for all of us, and it’s a work in progress anyway. My closet because I have way more clothes than I need, but I can tell you I’ll part with a tiny fraction of it. Stuff in general, especially having bought a house last year. There’s the shit from the apartment we don’t need–we still have a lamp surplus–plus my mom took that opportunity to unload junk of mine that was stashed in her basement. So there are all sorts of things lying around that could go.
  3. How acid-tongued are you? I can be, but I choose not to be. All in all, though, I think I’m pretty mild, especially compared to how nasty some people can be. I can be biting, but not horrible.
  4. What’s an interesting way you’ve burned yourself? I once spilled hot chocolate in my lap as a kid. But now it’s either I’m not waiting for my food to cool down or I used a straightening iron like three times out of the whole year and hurt myself. Or curling iron. Why does someone with natural curls need a curling iron? To make the curls look nice, duh.
  5. What are your favorite everyday cooking implements? I don’t think I have one. Could be because I don’t cook enough.

From Friday 5.

Friday 5: Then You Begin to Make it Better Better Better Better Better Better Yeah

  1. What’s something you hated as a teen but love today? I can’t think of something for this specifically, but I can tell you that teenage me would have some qualms about adult me’s life right now. I’m not where she would’ve thought by any means, and not even in a bad way, just different. My life isn’t as ~cool and edgy~ as she would’ve hoped, but I’m happy.
  2. What’s something you recently dreaded that turned out not too bad? Ugh. Man. Ask me this Monday or Tuesday because right now, things are not going well, and by then, there’s a chance there’ll be a tiny spot of good news. Or…it could just be worse.
  3. How do you feel about February as it compares to January? The late winter months here for me are basically like a slow crawl to spring, so I see February as progress. It’s still pretty cold and snowy and we’re certainly not out of the woods as far as that kind of weather goes, but there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
  4. Who among people you know is really making the world a better place? My brother and best friend. They’re both working in the psychology field–she works with kids with behavioral issues, and his current job is working with adults in a sort of assisted-living situation, where normally, they’d need hospitalized but are in a program that allows them to live independently.
  5. In what way is today better than yesterday? So, as one could guess from #2, there’s some shit going on that’s not good–health issues with my dad. We found out Wednesday and it was surprising. Yesterday, we got a little bit more information, and there’s still more to learn on Monday, where we’ll have a better idea of the scope of things. I’ve been at my parents’ house every day since Tuesday, mostly going over one day, spending the night, going home the next day, then heading back the next, mostly to help out with things. Today was the first time I was in my own home the whole day. I’ll talk more about it eventually, maybe soon, but for starters, it felt more like a normal day, and besides that, the dynamic right now is weird. It’s like…being there, I’m in the middle of everything and there’s just kind of a certain vibe right now, whereas at home, it’s not staring me in the face so much. It’s not like it’s all magically different or better or I’m forgetting all about what’s going on when I’m home, but it’s like there’s no elephant in the room.

From Friday 5.

Friday 5: Teal This Record

  1. Where in Africa would you like to visit? I’d say my #1 would be Egypt, but I’m so interested in travel that I’d go see just about anything.
  2. If you ruled the world, what would you forbid people to talk about in the company of strangers? I don’t know. I’ll talk about or listen to anything.
  3. In what way do you tolerate (or enjoy) being used? A few people come to me to look over writing–usually formal communication to make sure everything is correct, and my mom’s one to come to me and ask if there’s another way to word something. I don’t mind it. It’s the kind of work I’d prefer to be doing.
  4. When did you recently have an a-ha moment? I don’t think I did. Do with that what you will.
  5. What’s something you know about turtles? That they’re the only reptile I would describe as “cute.” Ask me this again when my husband comes home. He’ll tell me something I don’t know that he knows I’ll think is cute or interesting.

From Friday 5.

Friday 5: My Dreams They Aren’t as Empty as My Conscience Seems to Be

  1. What’s got you behind the 8-ball? My husband got word today that his employer is moving production from their site down to Mexico. He has time to find a new job, but man, that is not the way to start the year, and obviously, it could put us in financial trouble.
  2. Who would you like to see a VH-1-Behind-the-Music-style documentary about? Honestly, I’d just like to see that show and other similar programming make a comeback.
  3. What are you likely to find behind your sofa? Cat toys and dust.
  4. What’s something you’d like to put behind you this year? Debt. Aside from the mortgage, because we’re obviously stuck with that for 30 years.
  5. What’s something you don’t want to eat if there’s no ketchup? French fries, unless they’re seasoned or they’re sweet-potato fries. Or my veggie burgers or fake chicken sandwiches. When I go out, other condiments and toppings are totally fine, especially places that make interesting burgers and if I have some other interesting condiment at home, fine, but I can’t have nothing on it.

From Friday 5.

Saturday 9: You Make Me Feel Brand New

Saturday 9: You Make Me Feel Brand New (1974)
Unfamiliar with this week’s tune? Hear it here.

Welcome to the first Saturday 9 of 2019!

1) As 2019 kicks off, what are your hopes for the brand new year? To be able to save some money but also do some home improvements. I’m looking at you, new paint or siding.

2) Just because an item isn’t brand new doesn’t mean it isn’t valuable. Have you scored any fabulous finds at a second hand store or website? I’ve added some impressive pieces to my record collection, although I don’t think I have anything super valuable.

3) This song is sung by The Stylistics, a group from Philadelphia. Have you ever been to Philly? Yeah, but I’ve never done much there. Once I was just passing through by train and didn’t do anything other than eat and shop in the train station, and the most recent time was when I went to see Stevie Nicks, and we didn’t do much other than that, either. To be clear, that’s not a complaint. It was a great show.

4) This song was co-written by Thom Bell, a Philadelphia-based musician/producer who was born in Kingston, Jamaica. The average daily temp in Kingston in January is 87º. Do you have plans to get away this winter and go somewhere warm? Not concrete ones, but I wouldn’t be opposed to planning a weekend getaway somewhere. I am working Saturdays in February, though, so that month is out.

5) The Stylistics took their choreography very seriously. As you can see from the video, they even carefully synchronized their hand movements. Do you use your hands much when you talk? I don’t think I do as much as I used to, but who knows? Maybe I just don’t notice it.

6) The lyrics tell us that the singer is grateful for a friend who will walk with him along a path that “sometimes bends.” Looking back on 2018, tell us about a time that life’s path took a bend you didn’t quite expect. In 2018 alone? I don’t know that it did. Things progressed about the way I thought they would, although I didn’t really think my brother would beat me to having kids.

7) In 1974, when this song was popular, Chicago’s Sears Tower opened and was for years the world’s tallest building. Its elevators can carry you to the 103rd floor in approximately a minute. When were you last on an elevator? Not very recently–I just don’t go very many places where I need to use one. So maybe back in early December when I went to D.C. with my mom and her best friend. The elevator was necessary to go to and from our room.

8) Also in 1974, the 55 mph speed limit was imposed nationwide. When you drive, are you careful to stay within the speed limit? Or do you have a led foot? I’m not as bad as I used to be, but I still speed.

9) Random question — It’s time to pose for your Saturday 9 yearbook picture. Will you show us your right profile, your left profile, or will you look directly into the camera? Probably just direct into the camera, although my right side is my best.

Friday 5: A Real Head-Scratcher

  1. What are some pencil-and-paper puzzles you enjoy? I haven’t done any in a long time, but I’ve always liked–shocker–anything with words, like crosswords or word searches. I was also really into sudoku for a little while.
  2. What are some video (or computer or mobile app) puzzle games you’ve enjoyed? Does mahjong count?
  3. When did you last work on a jigsaw puzzle? A few months ago, one of my sisters-in-law was in the hospital, and the visiting area had a puzzle out. She worked on it a lot outside of visiting hours, but we spent one of our visits talking and putting it together with her.
  4. What’s puzzling you right now? People, but that’s almost a constant these days.
  5. Who is the most enigmatic person you know? My mother-in-law. It’s almost impossible to predict her, and she’s good for having intense reactions to weird things so that it’s tough to figure out exactly what the problem is and why. And on top of that, it’s hard to tell if something she says is, say, just kind of an oversight or if she’s intentionally being mean, and then if she denies something if it’s because she doesn’t remember it or because she’s trying to gaslight.

As always, from Friday 5.

Saturday 9: We Need a Little Christmas

Saturday 9: We Need a Little Christmas (2006)

Unfamiliar with this week’s tune? Hear it here.

1) At the beginning of this recording, Daffy says he hopes all his friends remember his size, style and favorite color. What piece of clothing would you like to add to your wardrobe? There’s not really much I need, except maybe a couple pairs of jeans.

2) His friends are late for Daffy’s holiday soiree. Think about the last get together you attended. Were you early, late or right on time? We went to a friend’s house this evening and got there about when we said we would.

3) It hasn’t a snowed a single flurry where Daffy is. Have you had to shovel yet? We had one day when we probably should’ve done something to the driveway, but my winter gear like gloves and boots is all still kind of scattered randomly around the house from moving in.

4) Daffy sings that he’s looking forward to fruitcake. How about you? Are you a fruitcake fan? Never tried it.

5) Daffy is an American Black Duck. Their usual diet doesn’t generally include fruitcake. These ducks more commonly dine on seeds, foliage and bugs. What was your most recent meal?  Homemade sushi and pad thai, followed by milkshakes, at a friend’s house.

6) The only Christmas card Sam has received so far this year is from her insurance agent. She never sees her agent socially. In fact, she doesn’t think she’s seen him at all in 2018. Have you received many cards this year? If so, were they from people you feel close to? I’ve gotten three, I think, all from relatives.

7) When do you start holiday shopping: Christmas Eve, Thanksgiving/Black Friday, Halloween? After Thanksgiving. Black Friday would technically count, but I don’t bother with it.

8) Sam was recently driven crazy by kids running through store aisles wearing elf hats with bells. Do you have any apparel that makes noise? I don’t think so.

9) This time of year is big for charitable fundraising. Here’s your chance to plug a cause or organization that’s near and dear to you. We adopted a cat from our local Humane Society in the fall, and one of the things I’d like to do is either give them a nice monetary donation or put together a big basket of things they need like towels, food, and toys and deliver it to them. In the meantime, though, donate to your local animal shelter–Humane Society or otherwise–whether it’s money or checking in to see when items they could use. Or even better, adopt a pet to give them a loving home and free up space in the shelter for other animals needing homes. And if you can’t, some shelters offer programs where you can sponsor an animal, which is what I planned to do last year and never got around to it. But I guess actually adopting an animal is a fair trade.

Friday 5: This Spud’s for You

  1. What’s your favorite dish in which potatoes are a supporting ingredient (and not the star)? My first two answers were potato salad and Taco Bell’s potato tacos, in case you’re wondering how easily I could think of potatoes as “a supporting ingredient.” And then I thought of gnocchi, and then pierogis. So…I give up.
  2. What is your favorite type of french fry? Crinkle-cut fries are pretty cool. In general, I like a thick fry, especially if it’s practically just potato wedges.
  3. How did you last use a potato in your cooking? I haven’t made anything with potatoes in a while, other than instant mashed potatoes. My husband did attempt my grandma’s potato salad over the summer, though.
  4. What’s your favorite potato chip? I’ve really been enjoying restaurants that make their own chips, because I like the crunch and the thicker chip that you get as opposed to store-bought. But when it comes to said store-bought chips, barbecue is my favorite. My favorite brand is probably Miss Vickie’s, I think because they’re kind of similar to restaurant chips.
  5. What’s a word you pronounce differently from the way most people around you pronounce it? My friends and I used to intentionally mispronounce words as I joke, and then I started doing it with my husband, so if any of us forget we’re in front of normal people, you’ll hear all sorts of bizarre word choices. I can’t think of anything I pronounce differently just, like, in normal conversation, though.

As always, from Friday 5.