Saturday, January 11, 2014

Things Change - Even My Mind



Okay. I did it. I changed my mind about microwave ovens. I ordered one from Amazon and it arrived yesterday. I directed the delivery driver to place it on my wheeled office chair so I could propel it across the room and effortlessly lift it out of the box (it weights 25 pounds) and onto my previously cleared and spotless counter top.

After carefully reading the instruction manual, I set the clock to the correct time and heated a cup of cold water to the boiling point.

Experimentation, you know.

Later, a bit after noon, I heated up a frozen package of Michelina's Fettuchine Alfredo with Chicken & Broccoli. It took only 4 or 5 minutes instead of the 45 minutes it always took before when I heated the same stuff in my conventional oven. Saved money on my electric bill, too.

See... I can change.


Yesterday evening I watched an interview on PBS with author Kate DiCamillo.

The interview

Here is what Wikipedia says about her.

Katrina Elizabeth "Kate" DiCamillo (born March 25, 1964) is an American writer of children's fiction for all reading levels, usually featuring animals. For her 2003 novel The Tale of Despereaux, she won the annual Newbery Medal recognizing the year's "most distinguished contribution to American literature for children", three years after Because of Winn-Dixie was a runner-up (Newbery Honor Book). DiCamillo is also known for the Mercy Watson series of picture books, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen.

Born in Philadelphia, DiCamillo suffered from chronic pneumonia. At age five, she moved to Clermont, Florida for her health (warmer climate) with her mother and her older brother Curt DiCamillo, who would become a noted architectural historian.

The point of the above is to mention here that I lived in Clermont, Florida back in the late 1980s, where I owned and operated a combination Candy, Greeting Cards, and Religious Items Gift shop. The store was called Gene And Donna's and it was located on Montrose Street, just a  couple of doors from Curt DiCamillo's Health Food store. As mentioned above, Curt was Kate's older brother.

Kate DiCamillo was named the National Ambassador for Young People's Literature by the Library of Congress for the term 2014-2015.

Kate DiCamillo

Kate and Curt DiCamillo
Christmas 2003

I have often heard that this is a small world.

In some ways, I agree.

Note: During the interview Kate revealed that her first book was published after more than 400 rejections over a matter of years.

Did You Know . . .?

Eleven of the twelve men who have walked on the moon had been boy scouts in their youth.



On this day in 1989 after eight years as president of the United States, Ronald Reagan gives his farewell address to the American people.

In his speech, Reagan declared that America "rediscovered" its commitment to world freedom in the 1980s. The United States was "respected again in the world and looked to for leadership." The key, according to the president, was a return to "common sense" that "told us that to preserve the peace, we'd have to become strong again after years of weakness."

The achievements of his administration gained him much favor with the American public, and Ronald Reagan left office as one of the most popular modern U.S. presidents.



ignominy  [IG-no-min-nee]
1. Great personal dishonor or humiliation.
2. Shameful or disgraceful action, conduct, or character.



(born January 11, 1930)
Rod Taylor is an Australian actor of film and television. He has appeared in over 50 films, and is well known for his leading roles in the science fiction classic The Time Machine (1960), and in the Alfred Hitchcock horror story The Birds (1963).

(born January 11, 1972)
Amanda Peet is an American actress who has appeared on film, stage and television. Peet began her career in television commercials, and progressed to small roles on television, before making her film debut in 1995. Featured roles in films such as the 2000 comedy film The Whole Nine Yards brought her wider recognition. She has appeared in a variety of films, including the 2001 comedy Saving Silverman, the 2003 romantic comedy Something's Gotta Give, the 2003 psychological thriller film Identity, the 2005 action-thriller Syriana, the 2006 comedy-drama remake Griffin & Phoenix, the 2007 romantic comedy The Ex, the 2008 science fiction film The X-Files: I Want to Believe and the 2009 disaster adventure drama 2012. She has also appeared in the 1999 drama series Jack & Jill and the 2006 drama series Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.

I had a bit of a problem deciding on which of two photos of Amanda to use. I liked them both. So I used them both.

Here is the second one.
Cute, huh?

(born January 11, 1972)
Marc Blucas is an American actor, known for playing Riley Finn in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Matthew Donnally on Necessary Roughness.

(born January 10, 1958)
Alyson Reed is an American dancer and actress. Reed's most notable screen role was Cassie in Richard Attenborough's film adaptation of A Chorus Line, and she also appeared in the comedy Skin Deep with John Ritter. Her many television credits include Matlock, L.A. Law, Murder, She Wrote, Frasier, Law & Order, Without a Trace, ER, Judging Amy, Chicago Hope, The X Files, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Nip/Tuck, Crossing Jordan, Numb3rs, Boston Legal, NYPD Blue, Desperate Housewives, and Bones.

(born January 11, 1977)
Devin Ratray is an American actor, singer and songwriter. He is most famous for his role as Buzz McCallister in Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.


We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.
--Ronald Reagan



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