Demystification Guru

Just because we don't understand something, doesn't mean it isn't understandable.

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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Sunday, May 20, 2007


Our 25th anniversary is tomorrow but we went out yesterday to start the celebrations because the weather was supposed to be the best day of the weekend. We've also decided to draw out our celebrations over the entire year and not just stick to the one weekend.
my flowers
The day started with flowers being delivered. The photo doesn't do them justice. Peter had gone on line and finally chose just the right combination and was as pleased with them as I was when they arrived.
sheep herding
I read in the paper that they were having sheep dog herding exhibits at the Experimental Farm, so in the afternoon, we headed over there to see what we could see. This shepherd is in the process of starting to train his young dog seen here. The dog isn't even 2 years old so he only knew a few commands but it was fun to watch.
sheep shearing
We took in a demonstration of sheep shearing. They always look so silly, sitting on their bums but they don't seem to mind and they don't struggle in that position.
We went around and saw the lambs. These fellows were quite grown up but there were quadruplets born only 30 hours previously that looked too fragile for words. In a different barn we saw some of the draft horses and I stood and watched one named King while he was having his lunch of some very dry hay. It seemed like he was eyeballing me a little but there were signs all around indicating we shouldn't touch the animals so I forbore. Suddenly, he tossed his head and I was showered with tiny bits of hay that went down my blouse and into every clothing crevice I had. I had to find a washroom and take my blouse off to shake it out, I was so inundated with hay.
pub stop
After we had seen all we wanted, we trekked across some fields to get to Dow's Lake where the tulip festival shuttle bus terminus was. We decided to have a beer first and watch the crowds and took yet another practically identical pub shot of the two of us. We'll have to put all the pub shots like this together in a repetitive album one day. It was also at this stop that we started listening to the Senator's game they had playing on the radio. When we left Dow's Lake, they were halfway through the third period with the Sens leading, 2 to 1.
Sens parade
By the time we got to the Market, I was surprised to hear on various televisions in pubs that we passed that the game was still on and they were in overtime. Finally, the Sens got the overtime goal and won the game and from then on, all the fans came out onto the street and drove around, honking horns and shouting and waving flags. What will they do when we win the actual Cup!? Everyone seemed to be on their best behaviour which was nice. There was a considerable and highly visible police presence in the market the whole time we were there and I think that contributed to the relaxed atmosphere.
Moon Venus
Finally, on the way home, we noticed that Venus was very close to a beautiful crescent moon and in admiring the view, we decided to take a photo. Of course, it was hand-held and therefore not accurate at all but I thought it resulted in an interesting shot. So, happy anniversary to us and this is just the start of 365 days of celebrating!

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

more words

perfervid (context: In Randall Denley's column today, he was writing about Andrew Cohen's book critique of Ottawa as a lame city and he wrote: "Here I thought I was one of its most perfervid critics, not the chief yokel, a Babbitt-like defender of the dull.") Very fervent; extremely ardent; impassioned. Extremely or extravagantly eager or zealous.

What got me about the whole thing was how free these newspaper columnists are in their criticism of others. I know it's their job and maybe that's why I wouldn't want the job, even if I DO have lots of opinions. I don't think I could stand to read what others said about me. Even when I just write an opinionated letter to the editor, I get a frisson of fear up my back when it appears in print, thinking that someone will read my letter and disagree with me and SAY SO. Ack. Of course, I DO blog and what is that but an open invitation for criticism? I'll have to think about that one some more. (frisson: a sudden, passing sensation of excitement; a shudder of emotion; thrill: The movie offers the viewer the occasional frisson of seeing a character in mortal danger.)

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

on words

Words I've looked up lately (at )

The idea to keep track started recently with "anodyne" but the germ was planted earlier with "simulacrum" and embiggened by "encromulate".

simulacrum (context "the simulacrum of youth" at ) 1. a slight, unreal, or superficial likeness or semblance. 2. an effigy, image, or representation
February 7, 2007

anodyne (context: "This lends her Notebook an anodyne quality. " at ) 1. a medicine that relieves or allays pain. 4. soothing to the mind or feelings.
April 24, 2007

encromulate (context: "A good full-body sneeze encromulates the frame, as the poet said." at )
From James Lileks himself: "Sorry; it's a Simpsons reference. Even worse, it's a reference to something actually never said on the Simpsons, but implied." "cromulent means valid, acceptable, or possibly commonplace"
Apr 13, 2007

syllabus (context: I use the word a lot at college but wasn't sure of its real meaning and am relieved to discover I do use it correctly.) an outline or other brief statement of the main points of a discourse, the subjects of a course of lectures, the contents of a curriculum, etc.
April 27, 2007

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