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Old 05-16-2008, 09:21 AM   #31
GeoffC
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One ... day ... - I hope to open a thread and see NO mention of squirrels !!!!!

Noun :
Etymology:
Middle English squirel, from Anglo-French escurel, esquirel, from Vulgar Latin *scuriolus, diminutive of scurius, alteration of Latin sciurus, from Greek skiouros, probably from skia shadow + oura tail
Date:
14th century


Transitive verb :
Etymology:
from the squirrel's habit of storing up gathered nuts and seeds for winter use
Date:
1925

: to store up for future use —often used with away , such as to squirrel away some money



So --- can we squirrel away any mention of squirrels into the proverbial black hole ....
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Old 05-16-2008, 01:11 PM   #32
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One ... day ... - I hope to open a thread and see NO mention of squirrels !!!!!
you should maybe try a different forum for your non-squirrel needs.
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Old 05-16-2008, 05:37 PM   #33
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... from the squirrel's habit of storing up gathered nuts ...
: to store up for future use —often used with away ...[/
NOW I see the reasons for that derogatory naming of beautiful girls.
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:36 PM   #34
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for the love of all things holy that's ENOUGH RAIN !!!!!

i almost drowned coming back from the grocery store just now, criminy ! and hello, have you noticed ? it's MAY !!! the saying goes, "en avril ne te découvre pas d'un fil, en mai, FAIS CE QU'IL TE PLAIT" !!! and what would please me is to go and spend my weekend afternoon on a nice terrasse wearing a summer dress and sunglasses, not a bleeding DIVING COSTUME !!!!! graaaa !!!! so stop it already !!! or at the very least, let it pour down solid sheets of water between 4 and 7 in the morning, when civilized people (= me) are in bed !! p*tain de s*loperie de sa R*CE !!!! b*rdel !! sérieux, ça suffit !!!!

EDIT : oh and also, what is up with the instruments of torture at the ophtalmologist's office ?? i had to go there two days ago and after he did the test for eye tension (where he shoots something (i can't tell you the details, i didn't want to know) DIRECTLY AT YOUR EYEBALL, it's barbaric) i had to lie down with my feet up because i was getting all spinny-headed, and eat some sugar. true story. this end of the week SUCKS.

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Old 05-17-2008, 02:44 PM   #35
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Just watched a BBC documentary on the Lewis Chessmen.
Of course the arty shots showed the pieces on a board which was THE WRONG WAY ROUND!!!
All the diagrams in the ancient manuscripts had the boards the right way round, the chess sets behind the expert talking heads were all positioned correctly - but could the numbskull art director get it right?? No they couldn't.

So we listened to earnest 'scholarly' narration, while watching a scene of complete pig ignorance (with apologies to pigs) - it was a disgrace (should be a flogging offence ).

P.S. the weather is somewhat inclement here too; due to the cricket season having just started - we still have the Wimbledon Monsoon to look forward to.
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:14 PM   #36
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I used to play chess competitively and agree with you, Sparrow. There is nothing more annoying than seeing a board the wrong way round, except, perhaps, seeing the king and queen misplaced.

Zelda, my partner is in Toulouse at the moment, looking at les archives (he is a historian). His hotel was struck by lightning during a thunderstorm. The fire-alarm went off, the electrics went out, and there was a small electrical fire. Les sapeurs-pompiers put it out. He says that the hailstones are still lying on the streets today; they were so thick and heavy.
Was it like that in Paris? Here it has just been wet.
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:38 PM   #37
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Zelda, my partner is in Toulouse at the moment, looking at les archives (he is a historian). His hotel was struck by lightning during a thunderstorm. The fire-alarm went off, the electrics went out, and there was a small electrical fire. Les sapeurs-pompiers put it out. He says that the hailstones are still lying on the streets today; they were so thick and heavy.
Was it like that in Paris? Here it has just been wet.
well, i'm sorry for your partner, i would have hoped that at least in the south the weather would be less abominable. he's looking at les archives de quoi au juste ? here it's much the same, although (so far...) no hail (maybe i shouldn't say anything though, i'm going to bring us bad luck). one minute it's fine, a nanosecond later water is pouring down in such volume as to be opaque and you have to wade through the rivers suddenly streaming along where the sidewalks used to be. lightning and thunder which goes on and on. i get somewhat nervous when it's thundering because a couple of years ago my modem was grilled by lightning (really). this is not very serious (except that after a few days of being CUT OFF FROM THE WORLD while waiting to receive my new modem i begin to hallucinate and shake uncontrollably) of course, but if it ever happens again it could be like what happened to your partner's hotel, and i would not like that at ALL.

i don't mind the rain if it happens while i am sleeping, or as long as i don't have to go outside during it. but tomorrow a friend of mine is having a going-away party on the point of the île st. louis before leaving for one year in the US, and i am afraid that it will be wetter on the bank than in the river. i don't know what she was thinking. i asked her if she was sure about having it in that location, and she said "it's ok, there's a tree there, in case it rains."
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:48 PM   #38
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Do not go under the tree if it thunders. Wear rubber shoes (crocs?) and you will probably survive being struck by lightning. The goddess of fashion won't be happy, though.
My partner is quite cheerful. It's the most exciting thing that's happened to him for a while. They gave the guests free drinks while the fire was being extinguished and this helped his mood.
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:59 PM   #39
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well that's even worse, if we can't even go under the tree (if it rains, it will surely thunder also). and i have no crocs (because i worship the goddess of fashion more fervently than the goddess of surviving being struck by lightning, apparently). i will try to find some other appropriate shoes. my umbrella is mostly made of wood (and cloth, obviously), can i stand under that ? maybe i should just stay home. we are going to the circus together just before the party, that might be enough. i'm not sure i love her enough to risk drowning / getting struck by lightning.

on the plus side, there will definitely be drinks at the party. that tends to brighten my mood as well. i'll need several if i'm drenched to the skin and a 20 to 30-minute métro ride away from home and dry clothes...

i really hope no other calamities befall your partner while he's in toulouse. tell him that relying on lightning to bring excitement into his life might be a tiny bit extreme... maybe he should try a concert instead ; some of them are about as loud as thunder...
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Old 05-17-2008, 05:57 PM   #40
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But... Marc, in the replacement book, were any of the pages obscured by non-removable stickers? You did CHECK before leaving the store, right???

If I go into a rant about the paper I have to finish by Monday, it will take until Tuesday (or later), so I guess I won't.
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Old 05-18-2008, 12:23 AM   #41
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Comcast!!

Verizon!!!

Around my house, my friends know that when they hear those words uttered by anyone within my earshot, it's time to say: "Damn... is that the time? Gotta go...I, uh... have a manhole in the oven!"

Verizon earned my ire in 2002, when I tried to have DSL installed in my office. From the moment of my first phone call, to the moment we finally had working DSL in my office, 6 months had passed!

6 months!

6 months of yelling, alternately coherently and incoherently, at phone support wonks who couldn't find their a$$es if their noses were neck deep in 'em! Who lost accounts! Who lost service calls! Who even seemed to lose reps every few weeks, and being forced to open new accounts that would inevitably be lost later! Who scheduled service calls that would end up on the wrong side of town, so they'd reschedule for the next season, then end up at the same place they went the first time!

And meanwhile, the DSL I had installed at home was being inundated with too many new users, and my high-speed connection became pokier than a 14.4 modem! If someone had called me up and said, "Yo! We're going over to Verizon's home office with torches and pitchforks... wanna come?" I would've said, "I'll bring the Molotov cocktails!"

That was when Comcast entered my web life. I dumped Verizon DSL for Comcast high-speed internet at home, and everything worked fine... for most of a year. Then, the internet connection went bad whenever it got warm outside.

WARM! Not hot... just #^@&ing warm!!

I'd call Comcast for service, and they'd schedule a service call for sometime in the next 5-9 days! By which time, the problem had gone, then come back, gone, come back, gone, come back, and gone an hour before they showed up! And come back half an hour after they left!

They checked inside my house. They always insist the problem is in your house! But they couldn't find a problem... so they left. After a few days of more gone, back, gone, back, gone, back, etc, I'd call back. And they'd insist on... yes... COMING BACK TO THE HOUSE! They ALWAYS insist the problem is in your house... even after their own technicians have documented that it wasn't!

Then Verizon, managing to feel my anguish through their special connection to the dark side of the Force, decided to put fiber optic lines in my neighborhood. They told the neighborhood that they would come through and install lines in the spring. But they did not show up until late summer. And when they did, they tore up the neighborhood, leaving huge piles of dirt everywhere, planting huge boxes with covers the size of battleship plate every few houses!

And when it looked like they were going to just skip our street out of pure spite, we happened to go on vacation. When we came back... YES! A brand new piece of battleship plate in my front yard... half the lawn dug up... and the best part, they couldn't even manage to keep the plate on public right of way! It intrudes into my property by 2 feet.

2 #^@&*%$!IN' FEET!

Calls to complain only led to a strange laughter that seemed to echo through the air and float over my head every night.

Now summer's here, and my Comcast internet is doing the gone, back, gone, back, gone, back, bone, gack, bone, gack bit again. My eyes have developed a noticeable resemblance to Marty Feldman's whenever I try to get online. Whenever I hear the word "Comcast," I immediately scream back, "COMCAST!! Slowly I turned! Step by step... inch by inch... I crept up on them! I unlimbered my grenade launcher, and punched one through the receptionist's desk! Up the stairs to the executives' offices! I stuffed one down the throat of the President! Here's one for the moron in the commercials! There's one for the guy who did their stoopid logo! Another! Another!.."

And, GODS HELP ME, I am actually considering calling Verizon to have them connect me to their battleship plate on my property. And the day after I do, I will be paying a visit to my doctor, so he can CASTRATE ME... which should be a #^@&*%$!IN' PLEASURE compared to what I've endured over the past SIX YEARS...

Hahh...

H-haahhh--h...

hngh...

boy, look at the time...
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:32 AM   #42
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Now I see why you warned us first!
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:20 AM   #43
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Now I see why you warned us first!
When you rant, you sure can give an earful eyeful! It's the backside of being a creative writer I'd say...
Scraping the bottom of the barrel of inspiration.
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:46 AM   #44
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Okay, other than too hard peaches...

CONTRACTORS!!!!!

I have a house that is pushing 95 years old. Things fall off of it in a regular and depressing fashion. The coldest day of the year last year, while we had our very new granddaughter staying with us, the boiler decided that it was tiem to die. I got up to walk the dog and said, "Huh. It's kind of cold in here this morning."

After a few panicky minutes of trying to jumpstart the boiler, I called the "24 Hour Emergency" plumber and got an answering machine. $6500 and three days later, I had a new boiler. The guy who eventually showed up to look at the problem told me that we would have to use space heaters to keep alive for the next few days while they waited on parts. He magnanimously offered three from his shop. For a house that tops 4000 square feet.

Then, that spring, my wife woke me up one fine morning with the question, "Shouldn't the plaster in the hallway be dry?" We had sprung a roof leak sometime through the dreary winter season. Since we live in Wisconsin, Cheese Supplier to the World and Great American Icebox, the water waited until the initiation of spring deluges to melt and come pouring through the roof in torrents.

Another phone call and a series of contractors to bid on the new roofing project. We asked the contractor to provide references and told him specifically that we did NOT want to hire one of those guys who bids a project, then disappears for lengthy and mysterious intervals. He assured us that he was the guy we wanted, as did his references.

$12,000 and six months later, I hired a second and then a third contractor to fix the mistakes, and then finish the fixing of said mistakes. Turns out that there is, indeed, a hidden website, available only to contractors where you can arrange other contractors to sit in for "references" and provide glowing reports for your "work."

Turns out the contractors brother was arrested on his way to work one fine morning for posession with intent. The contractor was arrested for a third DUI. He was kiting the materials down a long list of contracts to make up for his gambling addiction. All this with my roof stripped down to the tar paper, waiting on the shingles he forgot to order.

We needed to paint the upstairs hallway. The contractor carefully listened to our needs and put in a reasonable bid. He painted HALF the hallway, and disappeared. We called him and politely asked him why he had painted all the north wall and a thrid of the south wall and stopped. He said, "That was what you had me bid on."

The exterior badly needs painting. Instead of following my wise and judicious plan of ignoring it until the whole place crummbled into a duty pile with soft moans of our broken and mangled bodies issusing forth from the rubble, my wife called a... Wait for it... CONTRACTOR and had them put in a bid.

He did, and said that several windows were going to be in need of replacing before he would even think of touching paint to wood.

We got a window contractor to bid on the windows. He said that the windows would be about $10,000 and that the labor to put them in would be $30 an hour. When his final proposal came in it turns out that he thinks putting a simple window in takes approximately 8 hours. After peeling me off the ceiling, my wife called him up and questioned his manhood. The length of time dropped. More significantly, it was standardized and immutable.

The painter is now setting up scaffolding to scrape and paint. He came to me and said those delightful words all homeowners love to hear from a contractor: "There's a problem."

One of the stained glass windows on the front of the house has a deteriorated frame. He suggested a contractor he knows that can re-frame them.

There is not enough Valium in the world.
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:49 AM   #45
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golly. suddenly being a renter doesn't look quite so bad. even if my landlord is a blood-sucking b*stard.
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