I while ago, I wrote about how oranges were now larger than grapefruit. The change has occurred rather abruptly. Although the oranges are huge, they aren’t sweeter or juicier. Most of the larger size is an enormously thick skin. And the oranges go bad and rot in record time. Oranges used to keep for weeks when refrigerated. Now, they last a couple of days at best. Many don’t last that long.

They’ve already done in the strawberries. Whatever those huge soggy red things are they are foisting off on us and calling strawberries? They have less taste, aren’t sweet … and become inedible almost immediately. Between buying them and them rotting is no more than a few hours.

The next fruit to get hit were green grapes. They appeared at Hannaford in April. Huge. They are firm when you buy them, but turn mushy in hours. At best, they are peculiarly tasteless. They haven’t ruined the red grapes yet, but I’m sure they’re working on it. I told Garry that the best way to judge whether or not they have messed with the genetics of the fruit or vegetable? if it looks too good to be true, it’s is.

So what’s next? The cattle? Sheep? Bet they are already doing it. How about dogs and cats? Perfect specimens that can win “Best In Show” every time, but are oddly vacant and lacking personality.

How about children? No more problems trying to keep them from misbehaving in school. They’ll be very well-behaved, all the time. Because we’ll engineer the mischief right out of them. What could go wrong with that?

I am convinced that this is the way the world ends. They genetically change our food. Eventually, genetic meddling  with some kind of animal or vegetable produces an unexpected result and people start dying. By the millions. All over for humankind.

And we will have done it to ourselves.

The big fruit is the orange

The big fruit is the orange

The Hollow Men: T.S. Eliot

Mistah Kurtz—he dead.

A penny for the Old Guy


We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats’ feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion;

Those who have crossed
With direct eyes, to death’s other Kingdom
Remember us—if at all—not as lost
Violent souls, but only
As the hollow men
The stuffed men.


Eyes I dare not meet in dreams
In death’s dream kingdom
These do not appear:
There, the eyes are
Sunlight on a broken column
There, is a tree swinging
And voices are
In the wind’s singing
More distant and more solemn
Than a fading star.

Let me be no nearer
In death’s dream kingdom
Let me also wear
Such deliberate disguises
Rat’s coat, crowskin, crossed staves
In a field
Behaving as the wind behaves
No nearer—

Not that final meeting
In the twilight kingdom


This is the dead land
This is cactus land
Here the stone images
Are raised, here they receive
The supplication of a dead man’s hand
Under the twinkle of a fading star.

Is it like this
In death’s other kingdom
Waking alone
At the hour when we are
Trembling with tenderness
Lips that would kiss
Form prayers to broken stone.


The eyes are not here
There are no eyes here
In this valley of dying stars
In this hollow valley
This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms

In this last of meeting places
We grope together
And avoid speech
Gathered on this beach of the tumid river

Sightless, unless
The eyes reappear
As the perpetual star
Multifoliate rose
Of death’s twilight kingdom
The hope only
Of empty men.


Here we go round the prickly pear
Prickly pear prickly pear
Here we go round the prickly pear
At five o’clock in the morning.

Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow
For Thine is the Kingdom

Between the conception
And the creation
Between the emotion
And the response
Falls the Shadow
Life is very long

Between the desire
And the spasm
Between the potency
And the existence
Between the essence
And the descent
Falls the Shadow
For Thine is the Kingdom

For Thine is
Life is
For Thine is the

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.


The Name’s the Thing – Have you ever named an inanimate object? (Your car? Your laptop? The volleyball that kept you company while you were stranded in the ocean?) Share the story of at least one object with which you’re on a first-name basis.

A toilet named John

A toilet named John

Have I ever named an inanimate object?

Does my ex-husband count?

Garry and I both call the toilet “John.” Does that count?

Computers on a network all have names. This one is Silver Streak but I have not recently addressed it directly, though I do have serious discussions with it during which I point out it can be replaced. “Don’t mess with me, bitch. You can be replaced with a Windows 8 machine.”

I can hear it laughing at me. It knows perfectly well I would never replace it with anything running Windows 8. I hate Windows 8. And 8.1. And whatever it is they are planning to call the next version of the Horrible Operating system. I sold my Win 8 tablet because all it did was piss me off.

I buy my makeup from Lauren Hutton. She  named her cheek and lip stain Larry, Joe, and Ed. I own Larry and Joe, but haven’t met Ed yet.

We used to own a GPS called Richard, but our new GPS is just The GPS. He has taken us down one dead-end too many and we don’t have warm fuzzy feelings about him.

However. I feel obliged to mention the four dogs. We have Bonnie, Nan, Amber and Bishop, each of whom has multiple nicknames. I suspect this has satisfied our naming urges.  Moreover, I have trouble remembering names I already am supposed to know. I see no point in further confusing myself.


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge – Week 24

I take bunches of pictures in my house. I’m one of Those People who hangs stuff on her windows. Indian corn. Stained glass.

indian corn kitchen window

window snow 8

Dream catchers. Medicine wheels. No matter how bad a week I may be having, windows are a photo-op.
dream catcher garry office window
These are the only kind of pictures I can take regardless of the weather or state of my arthritis. Not surprisingly, I have quite a few of them. Good I like my windows. Oh, and then … there are dolls.



Odd Trio Redux – Time for another Odd Trio prompt: write a post about any topic you want, in whatever form or genre, but make sure it features a slice of cake, a pair of flip-flops, and someone old and wise.

Sorry I’m so late getting started on this. I had to stop and take a few pictures. It’s pretty dark in the house today because, as I discovered when I was heading out to the deck to shoot, it’s raining. I had to shoot in the kitchen. It slowed me down.


Today’s prompt calls for me to write about anything as long as I include a pair of flip-flops, piece of cake, and someone old and wise.

Old and wise? No problem.That would be me. The one with the camera wearing a 70% off final clearance orange tee-shirt dress from JJill. This has become my default house dress. If I want to be totally lazy, I can sleep in it too. On a rainy day like this — there have been few rainy days this summer — I can say I’m “dressing against the weather.” When we lived in Boston and worked, it was traditional to wear bright colors on drab days. This dress is bright and the day is definitely drab.


Now, about that pair of flip-flops. The problem is, it’s not a pair. Yesterday I realized it had become a single flip-flop. I looked under the sofas and the coffee table, but no luck.

I’m not much of a flip-flopper. They feel funny and slide around. I was keeping them in the living room so I’d have something to slip on if I wanted to go out on the deck without getting splinters.

I have to blame this on the dogs. Who else would want one of my flip-flops? As flip-flops go, these were nice ones. Leather. Clarks. One is useless, so I’m hoping whichever of our guilt-ridden canines stole it will bring it back before it’s ruined. Oh, never mind. It’s already ruined.

About that piece of cake. We don’t have any cake here, but Garry is addicted to miniature apple pastries. We always have some of them. In the name of honest authorship I felt obliged to eat a couple this morning with my coffee. They are very good with coffee, though it is rare that I put the coffee, pastries, and shoes in one picture.

But hey … when WordPress calls, I obey!


Nosey Delights – From the yeasty warmth of freshly baked bread to the clean, summery haze of lavender flowers, we all have favorite smells we find particularly comforting. What’s yours?

There was a time when I baked bread. The smell would bring friends and neighbors lining up at the kitchen door to get a hunk off a warm, newly baked loaf. I was a good baker, but one day I got tired of spending ten hours to bake 4 loaves of bread which would be consumed by my pals in about 10 seconds.

empty chairs

I used to love the smell of new-mown grass, but we have no grass here, just crabgrass, weeds, rocks, and woods. And though the smell of freshly mown anything is good, weeds and crabgrass don’t have quite the same kick as grass.

I suppose my favorite smell these days is the scent of supper being cooked by someone else wafting from the kitchen. Someone who isn’t me.

It’s the smell of a night off from the kitchen. It is yummy and I can’t get enough of it!


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: Week 20

The oddest photographs are the ones I take when I get my hands on an unfamiliar camera and want to see what it will do. Anything becomes fair game for the lens. And I do mean anything.


All of these were taken in low light. And from the recliner. Talk about feeling lazy! It also was a fair test of the telephoto lens in moderately low light.


Who will be the first to throw away the dead flowers? I hate throwing them out, so I wait until Garry gets me a new bouquet. No flowers this week — or last week — so it’s still waiting. It has become a contest. Who will break first? Probably me. Garry can ignore it forever.

18th century Japanese porcelain cohabits with 19th century Italian blown glass.

18th century Japanese porcelain cohabits with 19th century Italian blown glass.

How close can you get without getting out of the recliner? Pretty close.

Who will clean that window?

Who will clean that window?

No one is willing to climb a ladder so the window will never be clean. I think of it as life’s natural bokeh.


Share Your World – 2014 Week 26

Is your refrigerator, organized or a mess inside? 

Our refrigerator is an organized mess. Organized loosely, mostly by the height of the shelves. Tall stuff (mostly liquid) on top. Short stuff in the middle. Tallish stuff, veggies, fish, cold-cuts, whatever on the bottom shelf and in the pullout baskets.

Sometimes, what’s in those pullout baskets has been there too long. Forgotten veggies have morphed into pulpy messes. Meanwhile, leftovers from who-knows-when lurk in the back, covered with strange fuzzy fungi and now beyond identification. Yoicks.

If you could be famous for one thing, what would it be?

It certainly wouldn’t be my housekeeping, athletic prowess, or skill with arts and crafts.

marilyn selfie

So let me suggest, as a writer and photographer, that I’d like to be known as a pretty good writer who also took some nice pictures. That would do it for me.

What one thing have you not done that you really want to do?

You mean — ever? Or recently? Because I’ve done most of the things I wanted to do. Some of them I wish I had the wherewithal to do again … but my life has been full and interesting. Looking back, I don’t feel deprived. Poor, yes. Deprived, no.

Where do you eat breakfast?

A better question would be “Do you eat breakfast?”

To which I would have to reply “Define breakfast.”

I definitely drink coffee. With fervor and great enthusiasm. I don’t drink coffee all day, but first thing in the morning, coffee makes the wheels go round. The smell of it, the taste of it. The heat of it. Ah coffee.

And I eat something with my coffee. A protein bar. A small piece of pastry or a cookie. I don’t get serious about real food until lunch. Before then, I’m in coffee mode.

Don’t even think about telling me I should cut out caffeine. Not a word.

Mr. Coffee