No two things are identical, though many things seem to be on the surface.

Even identical twins are not precisely identical. There’s always some small difference. Every snowflake is unique. Each part of history is slightly different from any other.

But if things aren’t identical, they can be remarkably similar. “Rhyming” as Samuel Clemens artfully phrased it.

Our world today rhymes well with the rise of Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany. Every single day that passes make this more obvious. The U.S. is not 1930s Germany, yet we resemble it sufficiently to make some of us — me for example — very worried.

Many people describe the German government at the time as weak — or mostly too weak to fight back. There was a time — quite a long time — when they could have fought back. When Hitler could have been forced down and out, but it didn’t happen.

Will we do a better job? Are we trying? What more can we do?

My friend, Martha Kennedy pointed out to me that Trump is not a Republican.

Trump is a fascist.

It caught me off-guard for a second. My breath went in and stopped there … and then I knew she was right. He isn’t a Republican. He isn’t even an American. There isn’t a patriotic, nation-loving bone in his bloated body. He is a greedy, bigoted, narcissist who cares about no one but himself. He is loyal to nothing.

In my heart, I would like to see him in handcuffs off to a long-term in Federal prison, but I would settle for him and all those wretched people he has sucked into our government removed and banned from government. If you can ban Pete Rose from baseball, how much more so should we be banning that thing from any kind of government — or even the possibility of getting any sort of government assistance for any project. Ever.

But don’t worry. I’m sure someone will hire him to do play by-play on a TV news show somewhere. Let’s take a wild guess here. You think possibly Fox?


 DOUBLE DOG DARE  –  Gretchen Archer

From the publisher …

Print Length: 215 pages
Publisher: Henery Press 
Publication Date: March 20, 2018

Davis Way Cole has gotten stuck. Not permanently stuck, mind you, but stuck in the house, stuck with the kids, stuck in that life of children and housewifery that is a not-so-rare thing for working women. But the time has come for her to move out of the house and get back to work. There’s her family, of course and whenever they pop into her life, it just gets crazy. And there’s the Bellissimo casino. It has come a long way back from its near demise, but it has a way to go and it’s time for Davis to get back on board and help.

As it typical of all of Gretchen Archer’s hilarious yet incredibly complex novels, the dog show, the dogs, the people, the absolutely everything that could possibly go wrong or off the rails, does.

One of the truly delicious aspects of Ms. Archer’s writing is her ability to take a wildly complicated story, tie up all the ends, and come out in the end with all the hanging parts of the story neatly tied up in a proper bow. This one is no different and if it wouldn’t give away too much, I’d tell you more.

Double Dog Dare

Davis Way is growing up. Her world is still crazy. Her boss is definitely crazy and her family is charmingly wacko … but she’s maturing. She’s smart. She may not always make the perfect decisions, but she doesn’t make her decisions casually or without serious thought. She cares about people she is close to … and she also cares about all the people who ramble through her life. So the books aren’t merely funny. They are also warm and frequently touching. 

Want a sip from my Double Whammy cup?

Suffice to know that this is one intelligent, funny, thoughtful, weird, complicated book where everything is happening at the same time and it looks like it’s all different things. Yet, somehow, most of it comes together and all of it gets sorted out. This is a life and death tale that will leave you laughing, crying, and hugging your dog.

I gave all three of my dogs two extra biscuits.

A full five stars for DOUBLE DOG DARE! 


Circles and squares in squares. What could be simpler?

Round flowers in a bouquet

Seeking squares and circles — inside squares, of course!

Squaring the Circle with Squared Squares


My first husband used to blush.

He was a natural blond when young. Even later in life, he was a dirty blond — then mostly gray. But he had that light peachy skin that blushes easily. He blushed so easily it was fun poking at him to watch him blush.

He didn’t blush like a romantic hero. More like he turned red in the face, so anything that angered, frustrated, or otherwise upset him up showed up as a blush. When he was really angry, he got downright red.

I don’t think I’ve ever blushed. Too much yellow in my skin tone. Never had rosy cheeks, either. I’m just one of those pale people who can’t tan to save her life. Even sunburned, I don’t look rosy — I just look like you should pack me in ice and send me to a burn unit. The closest to tan I ever got was a sort of vaguely pale orange skin color that made Garry laugh at me. Being white isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be.

Not being naturally rosy-cheeked, makeup was my go-to to achieve the rosiness of young womanhood. Back when I still wore makeup — mostly, back when I was also still working and looking “nice” had a lot to do with being taken seriously in the workplace — I had dozens of containers of “blush.”

None of them every looked quite right until eventually, I stumbled onto something that looked all wrong — it was a slightly purplish red liquid that you spread on your cheek bones — and suddenly, I had something like color in my face. No pink cheeks, though.

Apparently pink was not my color. I needed darker colors to counter the sallowness of my complexion.

I still have makeup. Not a lot. I don’t think when we get older makeup is flattering — or at least, not the kind of makeup I used to do. I’m sure there’s a different way to do makeup for an older face, but I’ve never learned it.

Unless we are partying a lot heartier than we are wont to do, I don’t bother with makeup. Unless I think I’m going to get photographed. Then I do just enough to keep from looking like a hag.

I should check to see if I have any usable makeup. It may have dried out.


Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge – March 16, 2018

Roads and snow …
UMass Memorial – parking lots and garage … and cars …
Garry clearing the front path
Our road, post storm


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: March 18, 2018

Snowy selfie – Photo: Garry Armstrong

Oddballs. I have been taking a lot of strange pictures in the house. The outside has been difficult to negotiates. Garry, though, has been out there, frozen fingers and all. Kudos to him!

Although a lot of snow has melted, especially on areas that get a lot of sun, there’s still plenty around elsewhere.

Two happy dogs! Photo: Garry Armstrong

The woods is full of snow and along the road, there are huge piles of it created by the plows.

Recycling only please! Photo Garry Armstrong
Gibbs fully enjoying snowstorm

It’s a good time to follow Gibbs’ lead: enjoy the sofa. Have another cup of coffee!

Warm inside, snow outside



Circles and squares in squares. What could be simpler?

Very circular lenses on a camera.

Seeking squares and circles — inside squares, of course!

Squaring the Circle with Squared Squares