“When anybody asks, 'What are you writing about now?' if I try to reply, the book-in-the-works sounds so idiotic to me that I think, 'Why am I trying to write that puerile junk?' So now I give up; if I could talk about it, I wouldn't have to write it."
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet


Free Handbags! Woo hoo!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Okay, I've never really admitted it here but it's time I did so. I'm kind of a closet handbag freak. Granted I have never bought a designer handbag in my life and I would never spend thousands of dollars on handbags thus plunging my husband and myself into financial ruin in order to feed my obsession. But I do have quite a few bags hanging in my closet. I'm not picky about brand names; I just like cute bags.

I also like to visit websites where they sell handbags and just admire the pretty pictures, dreaming of buying them but resisting because my frugal self always wins out no matter how much my shoulder longs to carry that adorable bag on my computer screen.

But I just found out tonight that there's a new website launching on October 15th called Handbag Planet. Normally they'll be selling cute handbags for great prices, but on the 15th they'll be giving away one handbag an hour for 24 hours! That's 24 FREE handbags, people!

It's easy to sign up, and they even let you choose which style you want to be entered for so you don't end up with something that's just not your style.

FREE handbags! You gotta check it out.




Almost a year ago, my sweet geek of a husband and I finally realized our long-time dream when we built our home on a six-acre lot in the country. Now we are dreaming of what we will do with all this glorious space that surrounds us. He wants a volleyball court, a swimming pool, a hot tub, a waterfall and a stream; I want a gigantic garden, flowers and paths and trees, and I very much want some animals – maybe a cow, or some sheep, or maybe goats. We’re still working out the details.

Well, Misty and Andrew, a geek couple who traded in their city life in California for a farm in rural Indiana, have gotten a lot of those details worked out already. On their farm they have a huge garden with veggies of so many kinds I haven’t even heard of some of them; and animals including goats for milk, sheep for wool, ducks for eggs, bees for honey, and rabbits and turkeys for meat – if I’m not missing anything.

Basically, they are living the life I want to live, and they do it all while still working full-time “geek jobs”. Oh yeah – and they podcast it.

Geek.Farm.Life is the first podcast I ever downloaded onto my iPod Nano. I would set iTunes to download as many episodes as possible every Friday night while we sat and ate dinner at the local wi-fi equipped restaurant. It took a while, but eventually I got through them all, and I have loved every minute of it.

Misty and Andrew cover a wide variety of topics from harvesting honey to making soap from scratch; from using goat’s milk and keeping it fresh to making mead (or was it beer? – maybe both); the equipment they use for recording their podcast to their vacation in New Zealand and the wool spinners they met there. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.

And then there’s the Farm Phone. The Farm Phone is more than just a listener call-in line. It’s an icon. The Farm Phone – well, it rocks. Every week they play listener’s calls, answer questions, and comment on anecdotes submitted in the calls. The Farm Phone turns what would otherwise be a one-way show into a delightful conversation between the podcasters and the listeners.

I love Geek.Farm.Life, and if you enjoy animals, gardening, fiber arts, country living, beekeeping, or geek stuff – either directly or vicariously through others’ experiences – I think you’d enjoy this podcast too.

You can find the Geek.Farm.Life podcast at iTunes by typing in "", or on their own website at



Eavesdropping Over the Cubical Walls

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Nancy*: I'm looking for a mason.

Linda: A cooking one or a cleaning one?

(At this point there was about a 2 minute pause. I thought the conversation was over – unfortunately it was not.)

Nancy: No, I'm looking for a mason.

Linda: Oh, a real live one?

Nancy: Yeah, a live one is better than a dead one.

Linda: One of those guys with the funny hats?

(A short pause followed in which Nancy apparently decided to give up and start over.)

Nancy: I'm looking for a mason.

Linda: Oh, a guy who pours cement.

*Names changed to protect the innocent.

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Scruples! Free For The Taking!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

There seems to be an imbalance of scruples among my co-workers. Most of us carry with us an average amount of scruples; a few have stuffed every pocket full of them like gophers hoarding nuts; and then there are those who seem to have lost every scruple they ever had.

I used to think I was in the first category of those with a medium amount of scruples – enough to keep the boss happy and avoid the need for discipline, but not so many as to be troublesome. But I have recently discovered that I have way too many scruples for my own good. I think someone has been stuffing them in my pockets and up my sleeves when I wasn’t looking – either that or they’re multiplying like tribbles – because I am being suffocated by scruples.

I have one co-worker in particular who seems to have a lack of scruples. I don’t know if she leaves them in a pile at the door every day as she walks in the building, or if she lost them all in a gambling spree at the casino up the road, but I’m seriously considering offering her some of mine. Unfortunately, I suspect she would be offended by my offer, and then I’m sure that the management would come after me since they don’t seem to approve of the distribution of scruples among co-workers, even though they are perfectly alright with distributing the work of the scruple-deficient workers among those workers who are more abundant in scruples.

So, if anyone is interested, I am desperate enough to empty my pockets of scruples that I am giving them away for free, because these scruples are killing me.