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1 week ago


Hey there, hi there, ho there! I'm as welcome as … well, as I am, I guess.

I just wanted to alert you all to Elyse's story. I just finished, and almost got quite tearful. Almost. A little bit. But not really…

Loving Her In Silence

Hey there, hi there, ho there – I've been rather absent of late. Busy RL.

Today especially. We babysat our 3-year-old granddaughter for most of the day while her parents went to Stratford (Ontario) to see Much Ado About Nothing. The tickets and babysitting were an anniversary present.

They said it was a great production, which is good because Lady Jay and I will be seeing it in October.

Anyway, everyone enjoyed the day, everyone is exhausted, and everyone is probably going to pile into bed early tonight.

I was sorry to hear about Bob Barker as well. He was a mainstay when I was a kid and home sick from school. And I was surprised later in life to hear that he was such a big advocate of animal rights. He paid to have three elephants flown from Toronto, liberated from the Toronto Zoo, and retired to an animal sanctuary in California, I believe.

Someone posted today that when Bob Barker reached the Pearly Gates, he was greeted by a whole host of animals, saying, "Come on down!"


Red Rose and a GF cookie, please, while I repair to the rear.

Nice to see everyone here. I understand Kat is riding out Hurricane Idalia at her condo. She reports that they're safe – I hope it is so!

Quote by gillianleeza

Glad you are back to normal, Jeff. Concussions can be scary. My youngest played rugby in high school and college and had two serious ones. Luckily he stopped playing and recovered, but it took a while.

I've been cleaning out more closets and found a lot of Magic the Gathering cards and Warhammer stuff that my boys left here. I'll keep it in the attic for now and give them a timeline for coming to get it. Not sure how that is going to work for the one living in Germany. Luckily I have the room to keep it, but it's fun to poke at them about getting all their stuff out of our house.

I'll have a few cookies and a glass of lemonade. I'm enjoying a peaceful night on my own. Quiet is good to have at times.

I hope everyone has a great weekend.


It's like the joke about the Catholic priest, Anglican minister, and rabbi who are at an ecumenical conference. The three friends are having a drink in the bar, and, unfortunately, the subject of abortion comes up. The priest and the minister argue back and forth for some time while the rabbi stays strangely silent.

FInally, the two turn to him, and say, "You're an intelligent man, and you've heard all the arguments. When do you think that life begins?"

The rabbi tugs his beard and reluctantly says, "Well…I've always felt that life begins when the kids leave home and the dog dies."

Manic Monkey? Is that like Outraged Ouranutang? Or Cheery Chimp? Or Gothic Gorilla?

Just asking…

Hey, Happy Birthday (today) Verbs! Hope it's a good one, with a nice, low number!

Quote by verbal

Thanks for the setup James.

Nothing new here. Hot and sunny, write and walk, watch the Mets lose. I grilled salmon chicken and corn last night - we are noshing on that all day. Or rather, I am, Talia is at work. sad Just me and the cats.

It’s my birthday this week!

Enjoy the day everyone.

Many happy returns – and I don't mean Mendalla – verbal! Hope you have a good, non-specific birthday!

And welcome back, Mendalla. Sounds like you enjoyed yourself AND are glad to be back, which is the best way to end a vacation.

Gonna post any particularly good photos? We don't need to see 2,000 pix, but maybe 3 or 4 would be nice!

Good afternoon, everybody! I've got some Colombian dark roast beans in the coffee pot, and pots of Darjeeling and Irish Breakfast teas to go with Sara's Scrumptious Cookies!

I'll take a mug o' Irish Breakfast with a couple of GF cookies and hide around the back, perchance to read…

Morning, all! I've got some Sumatran dark roast perking in the coffee urn, and some Orange Pekoe and Darjeeling teas brewing in pots to get things started. And, of course, we have Sara's Munchies to tame our tummies!

I have a new Bear & Girl story out with the improbable title:

Girl, Not Frog

Meanwhile, I'm going to grab a mug of Orange Pekoe, and wander back and set for a spell!

Hope everyone's day goes well!

So, Mendalla is off on vacation – in Iceland, no less. Hope his travel has been smooth and his visit there enjoyable!

I'll just put on some Ethiopian dark roast, plus a couple of pots of Earl Grey and Orange Pekoe (black) teas. And, of course, we have Sara's Scrumptious Goodies to enjoy!

I'm going to take a Bear-sized mug of Orange Pekoe and a couple of GF cookies back to Sara's Spot and see what I can see. Hope y'all have a great Saturday!

Mark Twain once put it perfectly:

"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it."

That's a far cry from "My country, right or wrong," and even further from "My party, right or wrong."

Pantsing a story, as Jeff puts it, is pretty much the way I write stories. I start with a germ of an idea, decide who the characters are, and then start writing and see what happens, letting the characters do the real work.

It works for me. But then I stole the idea from Stephen King, who has been known to write the odd story.

Some of them VERY odd.

On that note, I've just submitted my latest Bear & Girl story for publication. Hope it's accepted!

Morning, everybody! Now, let me see. I seem to recall that today was important for some reason…

Oh, yeah! It's the day our neighbours to the south celebrate their country's birthday!

Happy Fourth of July all you 'Mericans among us!

I've got some A&P Eight o'Clock coffee perkin' away, and some Red Rose tea brewed up, so enjoy!

Hot day here. I may even have to turn on the A/C. I've already been in the pool once to cool off after my yoga workout, so…keep cool you all!

Hey there! It's CANADA DAY!

We've got some Muskoka Maple coffee today, plus someone tells me there's a Canada Breakfast tea, plus Red Rose Orange Pekoe, so that's what we'll feature today!

And I'm going to follow on the policy of the University of Waterloo, which unfortunately experienced hate crime stabbings last week, killing three students. As a result, I'm going to hoist the Canadian Pride flag!

Everyone kiss a moose today (or a beaver, however you want to interpret that), eh?

Quote by gillianleeza
They finally paved our road this afternoon. The whole thing makes no sense. The state is doing the paving, but the county has been replacing water lines, and the utilities are being put underground. Why would you pave roads that are still being dug into? Typical bureaucracy; no one talks to anyone else. Sigh...

So, Fred and Dave have breakfast together every morning at the same café, sitting at the table by the window.

They're sitting there one morning when a city truck pulls up, two guys jump out and dig a hole in the verge by the sidewalk, When they've finished, they toss the shovels in the back of the truck, mount up, and roar off.

The next day, nothing happens – the hole just sits there, a mound of dirt next to it.

The third day, another city truck pulls up, two guys get out with shovels, and start to fill the hole in.

Fred and Dave are more than slightly confused, so wander out to where the crew is and ask, "What's going on? Why did two guys from the city come and dig this hole, and now you're filling it in?"

One of the guys stops, leans on his shovel, and says, "We're planting trees for the city."

Fred looks at the partially filled hole and says, "But there's no tree in there!"

The guy looks at him as if he's simple and says, "Look, buddy, there are three crews, one to dig the holes, one to plant the trees, and a third to fill in the holes. We're the third crew, see?"

Fred looks at Dave, Dave looks at Fred and shrugs, "But – no one came to plant a tree!"

The guy looks exasperated, "Of course not. Henry and Carl were off sick yesterday!"

And he goes back to filling in the hole…


There doesn't have to be a reason for it. It's policy – and it's absolutely the same in Toronto, so you're not alone in your frustrations, Gillian!

Quote by DenimAngel

Hi folks

A beautiful day here . A break from running errands.

Jeff bite your tongue.. I'd be embarrassed if the Braves ever got as horribly snooty as the Yankees . But they are pretty good about keeping players long term .. Chipper Jones played 19 seasons with them and now works in the front office .

Pouring a large iced tea and mixing in some sugar and lemon,then giving the adorable critters fresh water and treats

The Braves and the Rays look like the teams to beat this year. I'm glad at least one of them has a fan that I like – and it ain't the Rays, who only have three fans in total anyway.

If Lost Wages doesn't want Oakland, they'd be well-advised to go after Tampa Bay, whose community doesn't seem to realize what they have!

I'll take some hot cocoa this late at night, and a couple of GF cookies, please and thank you!

Quote by ladysharon

Hi, everyone! It's been very busy on my end. First up, my daughter is going to the first grade and is diagnosed with autism, but can function. I'm looking into ways to help her overcome and work closely with her doctors and the school she attends to make sure she can reach her fullest potential socially, emotionally, mentally, physically, and academically. She is really smart and has an aptitude for math, and wants to become a doctor.

As for me, I finally got my website back up and running, and I am trying to edit a video for posting to YouTube. I hope to have it done and posted by the end of this week.

My writing mojo has been coming back slowly. I decided to dust off a couple of old stories I have on here and turn them into a book for future publishing. I have so many ideas, that I actually found a few notebooks I wrote fragments of stories, and one I am working on completing before I let my editor tear it apart before I publish it.

Hi, My Lady of Sharon! I'm James, and pleased to make your acquaintance-ship!

Speaking as a run-of-the-mill neurotypical, your daughter should be just fine, especially as she's good at math. Having studied some math myself, it's a great path through life.

I'll look forward to your ideas, as embodied in stories. And welcome home!

Thanks for the goodies, Sara! I'll grab a mug of Red Rose (from a tea bag) and wander back to Sara's Space, and see if I can peruse a story or two.

TBH, I'm glad the contest is over so I can read what I wanna now, and not prioritize the contest entries.

Quote by Molly

Oh no, is my link not working for y'all?

Your link works fine, I'm just saving people the extra steps!

OK! So the winners are in, and for once I'm in complete agreement with the top three!

  • Winner

Runners Up

And YES! I made the Top 10! YEA!

Congratulations to Jeff, Jason, and WriterGirl for their fabulous stories!

And to everyone in the Top 10 – except, perhaps that weird story in the 8th place…

It was an intriguing competition – and thanks to Molly & the organizers!

Good morning, everybody! I'll just load up the coffee maker with Ethiopian beans, put on pots of Orange Pekoe (black) tea and Darjeeling teas, and then peruse the goodies.

Taking a Bear-sized mug of Orange Pekoe with a couple of GF cookies back to Sara's Space and see if I can catch up on some reading.

Hope everybody's well today! Kat, good luck with your treatments and your family!

Quote by gillianleeza

I miss my cats but don't feel ready for another pet. It's a cool, windy, rainy day here. It's nice to open the windows again.

However, it was a bit noisy in the street. They are paving our road and the grinder hit a manhole cover that had been paved over the last time the road was paved many years ago. It made an enormous sound and ripped up the manhole cover, and bent the whole thing while the grinder was throwing the asphalt down into the sewer. The county then had to come in with a few trucks and suck out the debris to prevent it from clogging everyone's sewer lines. They then blew out the lines. One should never use their facilities when they suck all the water out; it pulled the water out of one of our toilets. Not a fun day. Trying to get in and out of my driveway and street will be a challenge for a few days.

I hope everyone is doing well and that you receive good news, Kat.

I'll take a few cookies and try to get some sleep.


Sounds perfectly dreadful, Gillian. Part of the problem with losing institutional memory: no one knows about stuff that was done earlier, with results such as you've described. There's going to be a lot of that as the effects of the Great Boomer Retirement start to hit home.

I'll try that English Garden stuff Mendalla, although I'm not a big fan of Jasmine teas. And a GF cookie, if there's one floating around…

Quote by KatarinaTechgoddess

I feel like I’ve read that story rather recently but for the life of me can’t recall exactly where. It’s gonna bug me now till I figure it out.

I had a marvelous idea for a story and then discovered over tea that my neighbor who is a children’s author was writing a series of books that was basically the gist of the story I was going to write. Now I’m wondering if I got the idea from her subconsciously or if we had a conversation where I wasn’t 100% tuned in (my ADHD can make it hard for me to focus at times). Regardless, I’m thrilled for her and bummed for me. Not that I have time to do justice to such a story but it would have been fun.

I have an appointment today with the cancer doc to see if I get the “all clear” or whether another round of chemo is in my future. All good vibes welcome! Thanks!

Absolutely – good vibes from all of us, all day long!

Meanwhile, I once wrote a book about entrepreneurship (two actually, but this story relates to the first one). In it, I interviewed a woman by the name of Marci Lipman. She was a college drop-out who started by selling graphic art, framed and unframed, found she had an eye and talent for spotting good ones, and decided to make a business of it. She started making (having made) sweatshirts, sweaters, and t-shirts with eye-catching graphics that became immensely popular, which is quite an accomplishment in the incredibly competitive clothing business. Lady Jay still has a couple of her sweatshirts and they still look amazing, at least a decade later.

In my interview, I asked her about good ideas, and what you did if someone else had done your idea before. Her reply was, I found, immensely helpful.

"So it's been done before! So do it different, do it better! Everything's been done before. Don't let that stop you!"

An idea – for a story, an invention, a screenplay, a sweater – cannot be copyrighted, patented, or trademarked. It's only the specific expression or implementation that can be protected.

Moreover, as you have no intention of profiting from the idea, it would be difficult to sue for damages.

So I would say, Kat, that you should go ahead and write your version of that idea. If you want, you can tell your friend, or even acknowledge her idea in a prologue. If she objects, then don't, but foreswear for friendship, not for concern about copying.

As I said in both books on entrepreneurship: Good ideas are a dime a dozen; it's execution that pays the bills!

And you are outstanding at execution, my friend!

Mendalla, I love Kawartha Ice Cream, but I really hanker for some genuine (pronounced "GEN-u-wine") coffee ice cream, and I don't believe Kawartha does that. In fact, it's very hard to find in Canada anywhere, and becoming more difficult in the States as well.

It's always been my favourite flavour, ever since I was a kid.

And WG, we have a mourning dove that has hatched two nestlings in our front garden (in the chimney to our livingroom fireplace, silly thing), but we think a hawk got one. We've seen the other one flopping around, trying to fly, and then doing so in a panic when someone walks by.

This is what the management gurus call "motivation"!

And Jeff, I agree – Shy Thespian's story is a great addition. But I've generally been blown away by his writing!

Quote by gillianleeza

I need to do some cleaning because my middle son and his girlfriend are visiting this weekend and bringing her parents for dinner on Saturday so we can finally meet them. My son made me promise to behave, lol. I'll try my best.

Have a good Friday, everyone. Cheers!

Oh, but Gillian, that leaves SO much room for mischief!

As I tell my kids – I ALWAYS behave, just not always well!


How about the Blue Jays? They're six games over .500, and would be in FIRST PLACE in the AL Central, AL West, or NL Central – and where are they in the AL East?

Fourth place, and 10 1/2 games out of first!

In fact, in the AL East, only the Boston Dead Sox are below .500 – by ONE GAME: at 34-35

Oy gevalt!

Quote by Mendalla

Seven! Seven strange and wonderful tales! Mwahahaha! lightning flashes, thunder crashes

You're really into this, aren't you, Mendalla!

One wonders what you're like once the sun goes down…


Either that or you're REALLY into The Count from Sesame Street…

Quote by Mendalla

Welp, I gone done it. Hit "Publish". My comp entry is in the queue. Watch for it. Going to have some Kittie Zoomies and a cookie while I wait. Patiently. Really, I'm being patient. 😇

If that's "patient," then I'm glad I'm not your doctor!

We'll look for the entry marked "Ape".

Eagerly, of course.