Random Thursday: bragging, backs, blood, and birthdays

Random Thursday (ˈrandəm ˈTHərzdā):  the day on which Sarah plunks down all the odd bits and pieces she’d put on Twitter if she could tweet at work and if tweets could be over 900 characters long and if she had twelve hours a day to spend tweeting and following, which is why she doesn’t have a Twitter account in the first place.  Or a phone that does more than make phone calls.   Being responsible is boring . . .

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First order of business, bragging on my kid:

This past weekend, my husband took Janie and Sunny to this enormous Health Fair near the riverfront.  One of the activities they had for the kids was the NFL Pass, Punt & Kick Program, in which kids in different age groups compete against each other by, as one might expect, passing, punting and kicking a football.

Yesterday, Jane received a huge envelope in the mail.  Inside was a certificate for participating in the NFL-PPK . . . and a blue ribbon.  She won her division and has been invited to the sectional competition next month!

 Janie was beside herself—she would have nailed a free-jumping competition for sure—my husband immediately set up a practice schedule, and I was floored.

 My kid—mine—coming in first in a football contest.  Seriously?

I mean, sure, she’s the image of my mother, who was a gym teacher once upon a lifetime ago and never misses a Miami University home game* . . . but surely nurture would overcome whatever recessive genes skipped a generation to land on my daughter?

Upon reflection, I hope not.

But however she managed it, I’m very proud of her!

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Part of my job is indexing the city newspaper for our in-house database, and I had a week’s worth waiting for me when I returned to work yesterday.  My fingers are black and I’m pretty sure I have a stripe of red ink on my cheek from my pen, but I’m all caught up.

I concentrate on items of local interest, but one of the perks is reading the celebrity birthday list in each issue.  Call me shallow, but it’s somehow comforting to know that I’m younger than Scott Baio and Joan Jett and that Sophia Loren and Adam West are still with us.

Lauren Bacall is, too—she turned 87 today, and she’s still got the look that made her famous:

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I managed to wrench my upper back, for a change, on Monday,**and ignoring it didn’t work.  It rarely does, but I remain hopeful.

The pain has died down a bit— I’m still wearing a shrug made of sore muscles,*** but at least it no longer feels as though someone is trying to yank out my shoulder blades with a pair of plumbing wrenches every time I do something stupid, like get out of bed.

The difference, I’ve found, between a strained lower back and a strained upper back is that with the latter it actually feels better when I hunch over a keyboard.

So I don’t even have an excuse to avoid working on that one misfit chapter that’s been driving me up a tree. . . . Why do I even bother being accident prone any more?

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David McCallum turned 80 on Monday.  I first fell in love with his Man From U.N.C.L.E. persona,  Illya Kuryakin, and was delighted when he returned to television on NCIS.

Yeah, still in love with him.  I’m shallow, not fickle.

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I’m halfway through Blood Oath by Christopher Farnsworth,  and it’s the finest political vampire thriller I’ve ever read—and I believe  it  would still be the best if there were several other political vampire thrillers out there and I’d read them all.

There’s weight to this story–the backstory is beautifully done.  And the characters are so well drawn that I can’t help but be frightened for my favorites and hope that they stop their enemies before something happens to them.

I’ll write a better—or longer, anyway—review after I finish it, but if all political thrillers were as well written as this one, I would read more of them, vampires or not.

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And finally, Aldis Hodge, aka superhacker Alec Hardison on Leverage, celebrated his 25th birthday on Tuesday.

Yes, I’m old enough to be his . . . aunt, but I forgive him.

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*Though that’s for the marching band, not the football team.

**We have a front loading washer, and all the socks like to clump up at the back where I can’t . . quite . . . reach them . . . SNAP.  I usually just whack the back of my head on the edge of the  drum, but my pain center apparently felt the need for something new.

**Oh, ugh, sorry—sounds like something Lady Gaga would wear to the Tonys.