Noli Me Tangere
Paid Programming


My email/calendar program died on Saturday, taking with it every email message I have received in the past five'ish years that I either thought worth keeping or was too lazy to delete

 - I know! I couldn't have had more than a couple few twenty thousand emails in there and yet the program offed itself. what a mystery as to the cause -

as well as the only record of what I am supposed to be doing today, let alone this week or next month. Drive the kids to appointments, sure, but which kids and what appointments?

While I am still in shock over the totality of this loss I also feel kinda liberated. How can anyone possibly expect me to go to the dentist or attend Patrick's Field Day - about equal on my list of thing to do - when I no longer know when these things are supposed to occur?

Right? Right?

I am totally screwed and let this be a lesson to you. Cull those emails. Backup those files. Yea, do not as I do lest, verily, ye be compelled to look like an utter fool OVER and OVER and OVER again as, um, ye call random receptionists to ask if they are expecting to see anyone in your family any time in the next six months.

Right now I am going to take my laptop to the nice Mac people - a forlorn hope, I know, but still - to see if they can shake some sense into it. I expect they will impound it so if you don't hear from me for a few days either a) I have dropped off the face of the earth again; or b) I am wandering around the eastern suburbs trying to look casual while I try to figure out where I am supposed to be.

In the meantime I leave you with the single most exciting thing that has ever happened to Caroline in her entire life. Ever. Her words.

A month ago I spotted an owl just outside our bathroom window as it flew into the top of a hollow tree. I thought this justified further investigation and Steve obliged by setting up one of his trail cameras in an adjacent tree.

After a week the owl was apparently still using the place although we managed to get only one (1) photo of her via OwlCam.


We wondered if perhaps she knew we were trying to get pictures and was deliberately avoiding our TMZ'esque snare. That's how smart owls look. With their bright eyes and round heads - you start imagining things that are ridiculous.

Once we knew we had an owl roosting within a bocce throw of our house, though, it was fairly easy to get more pictures. I simply told the children to let me know when they saw a giant bird swooping around the backyard and soon they were screaming OWWWWWWWWWWL! every couple of days.


So that was all very exciting and we all felt like so many Strix Varia Goodalls as we peered up into the owl hole and studied the ground for feathers and small bones. Then one evening we realized that the now familiar hooting seemed to be coming from two different directions and we discovered that we had not one owl but two.


[note: apparently all owls look exactly the same but trust me this is a different owl]

The one we first spotted is a female and this one is a male and they are apparently roosting within a few hundred yards of one another and if you ever watched Friends you know towards what that sort of familiarity inevitably leads.

See that lighter colored fuzzy thing in the lower corner there?




Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. A baby owl. Couldn't you just?

But wait. Three days later.




That little pop you heard? Caroline's mind trying to process so much owlet-y goodness.

And on that note, wish me luck with my damned computer, please, even though I have only my own slackness to blame.

PS The other morning Caroline told me about her dream from the night before.

"I found a mouse running around in the kitchen," she said, "and I... I sort of squeezed all of the breath out of it."

She paused and looked at me, no doubt waiting for my knee-jerk maternal "Caroline it is not nice to talk about squashing things to death" but I guessed where she was going and I let it pass.

I nodded. "Mouse, kitchen, no more breathing, ok. Then what?"

"Then I took the mouse outside and I fed it to the baby owl twins and they became my pets!"

I said, "What a nice dream."

She said, "Yes."

Then she waited expectantly before finally asking, "Well?"

"Well what?"

"Will you give me a dead mouse?"


I think it is good for children to have these trials and tribulations. Builds character.