Took this guy's V-card.

As in, my representative's virtual business card.  I think!  I just got an e-mail from this guy for the first time and had to do this double-take at the image he included as a signature.  Whoever came up with this V-card thing clearly didn't think things all the way through.  That, or I have my mind in the gutter.  Either way, I thought it was pretty amusing.

Oh, and I love how "Representative" isn't spelled correctly either.

UPDATE: Okay Garry just set me straight and let me know that vCard is a legitimate "techie" term (per Wikipedia).  However, Urban Dictionary tells us that V-Card means something entirely different.

Grab-Scrab Victory

This is my friend Grant's favoritest game.  He will play it with anyone at any time.  Because he's very very good at it.

Basically, people (at least two, but no real limit) take turns dealing Scrabble tiles out onto the table.  As you see words come up, you call them out and grab the tiles.  You can combine new letters with existing words to 'steal' words from other players.  You can play with a 3-letter or 4-letter minimum.  Whoever ends up with the most words after you run out of letters, wins.  Sometimes we add up the points attached to each letter to determine the winner.

I am not usually very good at this game because it requires too much of a certain kind of thinking, even though I was a Hist & Lit major in college.  But the other day I played with another friend, and won (for once).  I was so proud of my words that I took a picture.  Yes, I know, I had accidentally put away the F in 'adrift' before I remembered to take the picture.

Something beautiful for your day...

by Anne Porter

When I was a child
I once sat sobbing on the floor
Beside my mother's piano
As she played and sang
For there was in her singing
A shy yet solemn glory
My smallness could not hold

And when I was asked
Why I was crying
I had no words for it
I only shook my head
And went on crying

Why is it that music
At its most beautiful
Opens a wound in us
An ache a desolation
Deep as a homesickness
For some far-off
And half-forgotten country

I've never understood
Why this is so

Bur there's an ancient legend
From the other side of the world
That gives away the secret
Of this mysterious sorrow

For centuries on centuries
We have been wandering
But we were made for Paradise
As deer for the forest

And when music comes to us
With its heavenly beauty
It brings us desolation
For when we hear it
We half remember
That lost native country

We dimly remember the fields
Their fragrant windswept clover
The birdsongs in the orchards
The wild white violets in the moss
By the transparent streams

And shining at the heart of it
Is the longed-for beauty
Of the One who waits for us
Who will always wait for us
In those radiant meadows

Yet also came to live with us
And wanders where we wander.

"Music" by Anne Porter from Living Things: Collected Poems. 
via Deborah's FB profile

Aquatic therapy and massage...for dogs!?

Having never owned a furry pet, I find it really, really difficult to understand how and why some people pour so many resources into the well-being of their dogs.  I mean, I think dogs are lovable and endearing and can be seen as "part of the family," and I certainly believe they should be treated humanely and given proper nutrition/shelter/exercise.  But the thing that gets me every time is that in many cases, dogs in this country live about 50x better than many human beings do, in other parts of the world.

You can imagine my reaction to the recently launched Rex Center, aquatic fitness just for your canine pals.  Complete with swim coaches, assisted swimming, canine massage, and aromatherapy--keep in mind that these services are NOT for medical purposes, though it sounds like they can be used for rehab.  I saw this come through my e-mail inbox and I don't think my eyes could roll any further back in my head.  Maybe there I am missing something very crucial, and maybe some readers will be thrilled to discover this find.  But I just don't see why animals deserve such luxurious treatment (essential oils and aromatherapy!?) when human beings in so many parts of the world face poverty, malnutrition, abuse, and injustice.

Folks might be interested in Michael Schaffer's look into America's obsession with their pets in his new book, One Nation Under Dog.

I understand I may not have the full picture and my strong feelings about this may very well be self-righteous and misguided--if so, someone please explain what I'm missing.

Good argument for non-English-speaking nannies

One of the executives here has the most adorable-hilarious 16-month-old who toddles around the office, and I think it's fantastic that he'll grow up knowing Spanish, even though he's British-Indian, because that's what his nanny speaks to him.

* Little boy toddling up to the water cooler and pushing on random buttons *

Nanny: Caliente!
Little boy: Noooo!  * continues to push *
Nanny: Si!  * grabbing him away from the cooler *

I guess that's why you usually have to do an extra little twist to get the hot water to come out of the cooler.