Snow, more snow and some thoughts

Still mired in snow here as write in the attic in Newburgh, NY.

(Note: Newburgh; one of many towns/cities in this area often referred to by New York City residents as “upstate.” Now, technically, and obviously, the city of Newburgh is upstate from the grand city of New York, any simple map will attest to that. Their inference with “upstate” though is “sticks” or “boonies,” that the second you leave their center of the universe you’re best chance at fun is talking up a cow at a local watering hole until you get it drunk enough to take it outside and tip it. I don’t envy the self-important arrogance that comes with living in NYC).

So as I sit in my attic pondering the snow here in “upstate” New York I’m remembering some of the beauty of it before the morning has me cursing it, again. The way it sits in the dark like a child’s nightlight behind the slats in a window blind or around the edges of a curtain. How it falls, slowly and deliberately past the lamp on the porch. The quiet and comfort it can bring on a snowbound night when everyone is safe and secure and the furry ones are curled up in their favorite spots…Okay, enough of this pondering stuff. Let the eventual AM cursing commence and…

– Pitchers and catchers and the rest of the gang have finally reported to less snowy climes and with it comes the promise of spring as well as the only time this, or any Pittsburgh Pirate fan can experience the feeling of hope. Sportscenter can also now, finally, back off on the most boring “exciting” highlight in all of sports…the slamdunk.
– On the topic of Sportscenter, I was watching early one morning this past weekend when ESPN reporter Tom Rinaldi said Tiger Wood’s lame apology press conference was “13 minutes or so of absolutely riveting theater.” It will be “one of those moments where people will recall “where were you?” when Tiger Woods addressed the public for the 1st time.” Now, not to take away from Tiger’s calculated earnestness to explain himself and start making money again…oh, wait…I just did do that didn’t I? I called it lame and calculated…hold on…redo. My much more brief apologies to Tiger, but a “where you when” moment? Yes, that one ranks right up there with scores of historic events and will be etched in my memory for…“what honey? Did I pay the cable bill? It’s automatic, it was taken out yesterday…what?…yes I cleaned the litter box too…well, earlier, I can’t help it if Benny or Shoes just pooped again…it’s what they do, eat, sleep, scratch stuff that gets me yelled and poop…” Now, where was I? Tiger did what?…
– I just voted in the over or under challenge at Cottenelle.com from their recent commercial campaign. According to the current results I’m in the majority as an “over.” 78% to 22% versus the “under.” Take that Bob Miller. He was very adamant about the “under” by the way. Weirdo.
– Were there Olympics happening somewhere recently?
– Finally got the attic finished here at the Franken-Greco Ranch (well, 90% of it, the molding is still left) and I just wanted to say kudos and thanks to Lenny and George from “Perfect Combination Painting” and the gang from “Floors like Glass,” two great local companies. After Lenny and George did a fantastic job finishing mine and my Maria’s not mistake free painting job (refer to an earlier blog from the attic “Old DJ, New Paint Brush” for painful details) Lenny recommended checking into sanding and finishing our pine floors instead of putting flooring down. He thought it might be a touch less expensive. “Less expensive” caught the ear and he was right. Thank-you Lenny! In comes “Floors like Glass” and holy cow the floors look like…well, glass. Beautifully golden new pine colored glass. Gotta love truth in a companies name when it actually happens. With my desk and computer back in, a new desk for my Maria and some decorating (she prefers Kiss and Stevie Nicks frames while I went with a Beatles, Pittsburgh Pirate and 3 lamp motif) the attic now has a cool office on one side and my Maria’s son Jagger’s rumpus room on the other replete with cat Benny hairing up the new futon and getting me yelled at. I’m loving my new space and I’ll get some pics up soon.

Well, that’s it from the attic at the moment. My Benny and Shoes the cats have their spot in the attic, by the way, but it includes the litter box, two cat beds they’re, of course, not using at the moment and Shoes’s chair moved upstairs from the living room covered with orange hair. This along with the aforementioned Benny haired futon on Jagger’s side and the smell of the litter box is getting me yelled at. Gotta go.

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Incident Free Winter Crippled at the Ranch

Being a few snowstorms into the winter and halfway through February we were doing pretty well here at the Franken-Greco Ranch avoiding snow incidents. There have been no expensive discoveries with the roof (wood knocking as I write), no sledding accidents involving trees, cars or squirrels and there have been no children in white winter coats misplaced. I haven’t accidentally covered our neighbor’s dog Molly while shoveling our driveway as she nips at me and I’ve successfully allowed our mailperson the opportunity to keep her “in any element” mantra intact by clearing the mailbox well enough to keep her delivering those vital Valuepak coupons and other pieces of bulk we couldn’t live without. But, alas, the shoveling is where I ruined our perfect, incident-less, winter snow record. It was last week and I’m walking around hunched over like some crippled character from a snow covered Grimm’s tale. I was doing so well too. I had gotten the driveway down to a science of anally parceling off sections to be shoveled one at a time in quick, easy push and throw kind of motions. Easy if the snow is a little on the fluffy side that is. Snow on the wetter, heavier, side? Not so much.

I know you’re thinking, if you’ve been here with me in the attic before, “Hey Frankenberry, don’t you live with a chore age child who could help you out with the task of shoveling this driveway at the Franken-Greco Ranch?” Now in that thought you would be spot on. We do indeed, here at the F-G Ranch, have such a chore ready child, age of ten, nimble and wiry, tall and with strong teeth and gums (no, I’ve never put him up for sale at a 4H auction or in a Dicken’s fiction, it’s just..um..noticeable). The only thing is, viable thought or not, said chore age child is my Maria’s son Jagger. The last time I recruited him to assist with the driveway he shoveled the front lawn.

So, needless to say but saying it anyway, I handle the driveway chore. I also consider appointments with chiropractors and sleep in a painful fetal position that Shoes the cat finds just perfect for laying in the cusp of.

If you want to come over for a visit, by the way, there’s a fine piece of front lawn I can have cleared for you so, in your surveying of the beautiful Franken-Greco Ranch property, you don’t get any snow in your pant cuffs.

Happy “Ouch!” Snow Days

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