Lemon says “Hell No!”




Happy Birthday Lemon!  You were a year old last week, and now, big girl, it’s time to go up the stairs!  That’s right – up those curvy, narrow, slick hardwood stairs.  Go on!  Look, treats on every stair!   You can do it!





Nope.  Not doing it.  Not for any doggone treat.  Nope, not me.  See that treat there – that’s for a crazy dog – that’s who that treat is for – I’m not crazy – not going up those stairs – not no how.  I’ll stand here all day.  Watch me. 


Sigh – and we did – she’s just not going, our girl.  Luckily, she’s only 20 lbs – it’s not too much of a workout to carry her up and down our stupid trinity stairs.


Anyway, I thought it was time to get those disgusting burgers off the front “page” post, and have a little Lemontime.   And, for some more fun – I added a new widget to the sidebar – Doodl!  So, doodl away! I’m always happy to help you in any form of procrastination that I can!

Order Pizza Instead

I don’t know how sound it was for the cattle industry to sue Oprah – it was so long ago, I don’t remember what their “beef” was (groan! I know), nor what she had done to insult our cow population.


But, I do know that the turkeys have a new enemy — Sarah Palin move over – Oprah is the new turkey slayer, and to add insult to injury, she’s promoting the worst, the most “fowl” (groan! again!) recipe ever!


Donald Trump – you’re fired.  Your Mar -a-Lago Turkey Burger is simply disgusting.


Just look at it!

turkeyburger Those big chunks? Not onion – apples. This mixture of chutney, apples, tabasco and pepper raised my eyebrow, but I thought  well, if Oprah knows anything, Oprah knows food – and I mixed up a batch over the weekend.



Oprah – first, you unleashed Dr. Phil on the world with your cow poke lawsuit, and now  Major Grey’s chutney and ground turkey meat are being misused all over the country, to form patties not worthy of my puppy — and, hard enough, but too ugly to be a door stop.  Even cheese couldn’t save this inedible disaster.


And now, you’ve sent Dr. Phil to Philly to mess with our cheesesteak.  Damn you Oprah – just go back to your own fridge!

Cinnamon toast with Tea?

While Brad Lidge did pitch on Saturday, and while the Phils did win, I’d hardly say Lidge is back, giving up 2 runs, so in my book of scorekeeping, I’m not giving him the “save,” I’m giving him the “he didn’t blow it.”  And, like Brad, I didn’t blow it this weekend either – as I made it through the cast on, the edging chart, and the bottom border of the next chart – ta da!



I’m not quite in the “save” column, and we’ll see if I get the “win” in the end (well, regardless of  whether I finish the shawl I get the win – I get to marry Joe!), but the knitting was painless, and I’ll go so far as to say easy, and the Canopy is soft and squishy to work with.


And, like Lidge, up there alone on the mound, lace knitting is a solitary endeavor – I must go it alone!  But, there is something you can help me with.


Something I’ve been struggling with in my mind for days.


Something that could have long reaching ramifications.


The question is upon us –


To hose or not to hose? that is the question.


This is a question that has plagued the modern woman for at least a decade, as we’ve thrown out our traditional knee-length business suit, and opted for the pantsuit, the pencil skirt suit, and thrown away the nylons, the hose.  Not quite the same freeing effect as disposal of the crinolin, the hoop skirt, the corset, or the girdle – but empowering and much more comfortable nonetheless.  Cinnamon toast legs no more!


Pantyhose were invented in 1959 to replace stockings.  No longer did you have two separate toasty legs, held up by a garter belt, but you now had a yeast infection inducing all-in-one – yeah!  And who do we have to thank for the control top – as Patrick Swayze would say (sigh – RIP Patrick), “thank you Julie Newmar,” – yes, Catwoman is apparently responsible for shoving us into a sausage casing.  Not that there is such a thing as a comfortable pantyhose – the underwear portion either gives you a wedgy, or it’s down at your knees, the toe bunches up and gets stuck in your shoe – and after it inevitable runs, its never fun to pull them off once you’ve glued them back together with clear nailpolish.


Obviously, I couldn’t be clearer about my feelings about pantyhose.  However, at our wedding, I don’t have the luxury of a pant suit, nor a full length gown that will hide my legs.  I’m wearing a tea length dress (can’t show you!!), with an ivory, closed to shoe – giving myself the option of to hose or not to hose. 


A November wedding – my tan will have faded. Potentially very cold (also, potentially sweat inducingly very warm).  Not the greatest shaver (but, do shaving errors look worse under a hose?).  But can I really get married with a naked leg, without hose?  This just doesn’t seem right either.


So, what do you think, to hose or not to hose?


Henry Higgins Alert

During my daily read of the Huffington Post, I came across this article about the new Daniel Craig/Hugh Jackman play “A Steady Rain,” which opened last night on Broadway. Not really a review, more of a plug, the article makes this intriguing observation –


“Jackman performs with an Italian-American accent; Craig’s character has an Irish-American accent.”


Hmm – what exactly is an Italian-American accent?  Is that a Soprano’s accent?  A South Philly accent?   Maybe I need a hearing aid, but none of my Italian American friends sound like Tony Soprano, nor do they all sound like they just walked off the corner at 10th and Passyunk.  My Italian American friends who I grew up with in Warminster sound like they’re from Warminster – and say “wudder” just like the rest of us.  And my Italian American friends from Penn State say “soda pop” like any good midWesterner.  And an Irish-American accent – Boston, maybe?  Or does he mean that Craig throws in a few references to thanking his lucky stars, and leprachauns?


Or maybe he means when an Australian tries to imitate an American accent he really sounds like he’s from Sicily?

The Lidge

PhilliesRedsRight now, Brad Lidge sucks, plain and simple.  He has single handedly blown 10 games for the Phils, the worst record in baseball.  It’s not a hip problem, or the blister on his ankle, or the hangnail on his thumb, it’s in his head.  It’s gone – period.  Unless he goes and seeks out Mountain Man Steve Carlton in his shack in the woods, and has Lefty put some voodoo spell on him, it’s just gone, for good, forever.


And that scares me.


Because I have the Lidge.


I have not finished a knitted project since March 2, 2009, when I cast off the last stitch of Ishbel.  I have completely lost my knitting mojo.  I used to be a closer.  Last year I finished 6 sweaters, 3 hats, and 2 shawls.  I was a finisher, dammit.  And now?  I’m benched.  I can’t get out of an inning.  I can ‘t close.  I have the Lidge.


So our November 1, 2009 wedding is fast approaching, and I really do want to knit something.  First, knowing that I’m afflicted with the Lidge, I considered taking baby steps.  No cobweb cashmere for me (even though I do have about 2000 yards in my stash).  In my glory days, I could have finished a cobweb shawl in two months – heck, in 2 weeks.  Now, it’s a big risk.  Big risk.  Just like putting Lidge in in the 9th with only a one run lead.  Did Charlie take the risk – no he went smart, he went with Madson.  It’s gotta be worsted I thought – something quick – something I know, even suffering from Lidge, I could finish. 


I went to Rosie’s last night armed with Stephanie Japel’s new pattern, Mirth, a perfectly respectable worsted weight shawl.  I fingered the Sublime, then the Kid Classic in a lovely cream color.  And then, out of the corner of my eye, I spied Knitted Lace of Estonia on our revolving bookcase.  I remembered Miralda’s Triangle, a shawl I had been wanting to knit before the book even came out.  I thought about the cast on – 331 stitches – and I froze, for a brief moment.  And then, a miracle happened – the spirit of Tug McGraw spoke to me – it said, You Gotta Believe – and I did.  I put down the worsted, and picked up the fingering weight Canopy.


Is the Lidge cured? I don’t know – but I did get the 331 stitches cast on – yarncake My little wedding cake of yarn! And while I didn’t plan it – the fact that it’s sitting on a ticking calendar is appropriate.

So, I Gotta Believe.

Or, I gotta buy a wrap . . .


flowerbox Over Labor Day weekend, Joe and I did a little accessorizing to the front of our house — a lovely new windowbox and a new light.  In theory, because we live in a historically designated district, I can’t change much to the front of my house without approval – the color of my door, the color of the shutters, etc.  But, all of my neighbors have flowerboxes, we bought a similar flowerbox, and all is uniform and in line with the historical philosophy of the block.  My neighbors, obviously, didn’t get to vote on my home improvements, but I’m sure they’re pleased nonetheless.


And, when should we get a vote about someone else’s houspinkheade, anyway?  Well, I’ll tell you when.  When the house is “our” house – our City’s house – a city in the midst of a budget crisis, a city that told me I had to take a paycut to keep my job, a city that supposedly can’t pay it’s vendors, etc. — that’s when we should get a vote about what goes into City Hall – because let me tell you — I wouldn’t have vote for this monstrosity.   I’m walking to court the other day, walking through City Hall – and what do I see but this giant pink and blue head.  WTF?  Really – this is what you spent our taxpayer’s money on – this art installation?  There’s another head, too – a checkerboard.  What’s up with the heads?  Who picked this?  I’m all for money for the arts, and really, cutting the arts in a time of crisis is bad for moral – but this is where the money went?  A big pink head???


Maybe I’m shallow (well, I am shallow – and have gotten shallower with age, apparently) but where is the message in a big pink head?  1801 Vine Street is decked out with Depression Era Art – on one hand, when you’re standing with at the bar of the court with a twelve year old who comes up to your knee cap, and you’re staring up at these hulking figures, laboring at the New Deal projects, it’s all a bit creepy, but I get it – it works for me.  What does this big pink head say about our struggling economic times?   Put on a pink face? 


I know, aside from the Mural Arts Program, Philadelphia is not big on message art, but is known for its iconic art – the Clothespin, the Lightning Bolt, the Love Statue – but really – do we want a new icon that’s a big pink head?  Next to the Rocky statue perhaps?

Just Ok is Ok

Last night, Joe and I went to see Julie & Julia, a movie about one woman’s high calorie (without, somehow, the weight gain that would accompany a pound of butter per meal) , soul enriching  journey through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking and, at the same time, a lovely portrayal of the romance between Julia Child and her husband, Paul.   I want to give the movie a huge thumbs up — Merryl Streep, Paris, butter – all rolled into one — but the truth is, it was just ok, and just as Julia Child was a bit over the top, Merryl Streep is over the mountain, down the stream, through the creek – well, you get the idea.  I guess you call this kind of performance a “tour de force?”  but, really, like Mamma Mia, it was just an opportunity to watch an Oscar winning actress behave slightly ridiculously, and have a fantastic time at a job she clearly loves.


But, the movie is not just about one woman’s finding herself through her muse, Julia, it’s also about blogging, as Julie blogs her way through the 500 recipes, in effort to have a structure to her life, and a project that for this first time in her life, she intends to finish.  Does blogging breed narcissism?  It certainly did in the movie’s “heroine” Julie, to the extent that at times, it was actually hard to get behind her project because through her eyes, it tended to verge on infantile – as one meltdown (i.e. temper tantrum) followed another.    I did find myself rooting for her acid stomach challenged husband, and the only way he was going to win, is if Julie succeeded.   And, like all feel good movies, success really didn’t turn on finishing all 500+ recipes in a year, but becoming fearless in a life in which things did not always go they way you planned.   


Did blogging provide that sugar coated happy ending?  Did cooking?  Did the learning come from the wading through the recipes, or through living the year in the life of a blogger – a blogger with a large following? 


And, then I found myself thinking about my poor neglected blog.  Blogging had become boring, and frankly, a bit of  a hassle – uploading photos was slow, my posts would crash, etc. – excuses, excuses,  I know.  But thinking about blogging as boring, lends itself to really boring writing – and writing just to keep the thing going.   But, I guess that thinking, in and of itself, lends its support to the narcissistic blogger – why do I really think I need to say something interesting and important every time I sit down at the keyboard?   


And my point – I just don’t have one.  And, I think if I continue to blog I have to accept that.  I don’t have to say something important every day.  Not every post has to have a beginning, middle and an end.  I don’t have a project – cook a billion recipes, get fat, go on a diet, blog about the diet, blah blah blah.  After seeing the movie I thought about blog “projects” – blogging through Websters – have a theme word every day.  Eh.  Blog through Elizabeth Zimmerman – I’m sure someone’s already been there, done that.  Blogging shouldn’t be a chore – and I don’t know why I started thinking of it that way –


So, I guess my real point is to explain why I posted today – and why I may post tomorrow, the next day, but eh on Friday – who knows – I posted today just because I felt like it.  And that my friends, is my project.

Ishbel A-Go-Go!

WordPress has this nice little feature where you can see what terms people are plugging into their respective search engines to navigate to your blog.   The Road to Lemontines can be found, apparently, by typing “japan, geisha, bird poop, face,” “penis pattern sew” and “paper doll knitting.”


But, the most frequent search term?  Ysolda Teague. 


So, it was no surprise that Rosie’s was packed yesterday for Ysolda’s visit to Philly!




Of course, Lemon was also a celebrity sighting as well.  And, yes, all of the above girls, sans Ysolda, do work at Rosies. 



It was a veritable garden of Ishbels!







And, there was twittering in the trees – Little Birds!














A might fine spring day was had by all!








Now there’s a happy dog!

The First Amendment on a Thursday

So, this young attorney dropped by our office recently, wanting to take his novel theory of defense on a test run, see if it passed the laugh test.  Basically, his client was accused of saying nasty things about the police.  He wanted to put on a First Amendment defense. 


A few weeks later, I ran into said attorney, and asked him how it went.  He just shook his head.  The case was called to the bar of the court.  He laid out his defense, a kind of mini-opening, and the Judge looked at him, cocked his/her head and said, “Mr. Young Attorney, there’s no First Amendment on Friday.”


So Philly!


But, luckily, the First Amendment, even on Friday, is alive and well, and while Ms. California is a total boob, she had every right to say what she said on national television, and had every right to make a fool of herself.


I’m not defending what she said, I’m defending her right to say it.


And saying it should not lead to her being called the “c+*!” word. 


Why on earth does Perez Hilton, a man who makes his living drawing penises on women’s faces, think it’s somehow better to be a mysogynist than a homophobe? 


Shanna Moakler, former Ms. USA, and a self-annointed wise soul, addressed the controversy on her blog, saying, “She lost the crown because she wasn’t able to convey compassion for ALL the people that, as MISS USA, she would be representing,” Moakler wrote. “And if YOU like it or not, gays and lesbians make up this country as well. THIS is why we have judges, so they can find the RIGHT woman who obtains these qualities.”


Hmm. Let me break this down.  First of all, Ms. USA represents no one – she is not elected, she is a beauty pageant winner.  She was picked above all women for looking the best in a bikini, and playing Fur Elise on the harp.  She can go to any country, and say anything, and I could care less – she is not an ambassador, she is not in anyway a representation of my views.  If we’re looking for women ambassadors – we need look no further than Michelle Obama and Hilary Clinton – not elected per se, but definitely they extensions of our vote for the current administration.  Shanna Moakler, my voice around the world?  Not on your life.


Now the second part – “THIS is why we have judges, so they can find the RIGHT woman who obtains these qualities.”  Taking into consideration the above, who cares about judges, when the title means nothing.  But, putting that aside – a judge who calls a woman a “c*&!” is the right man to find the right woman who obtains (hmmm . . . do you think she means embodies?) these qualities? This man, Mr. Penis Drawerer, who has risen to fame denegrating women, and making fun of young starlets who are clearly on the road to nothing short of death because of their untreated mental illnesses and addiciton is the one who is going to look deep into the souls of these contestants and find compassion?   


Look, I’m not knocking profanity  – anyone who knows me knows that in college I wrote a college editorial expounding on the virtues of the f$*&!  word but the “c&$@” word is not simply profanity – it’s a hate word – the same as calling a Jew the “K” word, an African American the “N” word, or any other word that we all accept as socially unacceptable and down right reprehensible. 


And why hasn’t he been called out on this?  Instead, Ms. Cali is laughingly asked to respond to his use of the “c” word – really?  Would this be the spin on the story if Ms. Cali were black and he had called her the “N” word? 


In the end, this is really a trivial controvery – but it really burns me up – that somehow it has become acceptable to use the “c” word on national television, and the purveyor of this hate speech somehow becomes the hero of the media spin on the story.


Sure, the First Amendment protects Hilton’s right to use the “c” word – even on a Friday – but that doesn’t mean that we have to ignore it, pretend he didn’t say it.  His use of the word devalues any other speech that comes out of his mouth, not that it was worth much in the first place.

A “Friendly” Reminder

Dear Senator Charles B. Rangel, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, former senator and failed nominee to head the Health and Human Services Departmen Tom Daschle, Nancy Killefer, former Assistant Treasury Secretary under Bill Clinton and failed nominee for Chief Performance Officer,  Trade Representative Ron Kirk, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, and Health and Human Services nominee Kathleen Sebelius:


Today, I paid my taxes.


Just a friendly reminder –


You should too!





A Taxpayer Since 1985