Sunday, June 21, 2009

Flashback to Sunnier Times

It's difficult to remember now amid the June monsoons, but we enjoyed a much sunnier time back at the end of May.

Diane was luminous in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden:

The roses were a riot of color - although the sun was too harsh for my camera to capture the scene properly:

One of the first lotus blossoms of the season:

A large flower (I was going to describe its hue as lavender or lilac, or even a light violet ... but that seems strangely misdescriptive here - aren't there any shades of pale purple NOT named after flowers?):

Today Sarah was kind enough to host a francophile get-together, and we watched My Best Friend in the original French ... without subtitles. The more often we paused the movie, the better I understood. It just takes time for me to process the words.

There's a connection of sorts between the sun-soaked BBG photos and the francophile fest, if a sadly contrasting one, because Sarah's once-beautiful garden is being drowned and destroyed by pests that apparently thrive in super-saturated soil. Her husband came back from the garden store with a clear ID of the culprits: spider mites, aphids and caterpillars. (He's rigged up a tent-like tarp to protect the plants from the continuing deluges, and is escalating the chemical warfare on the pests while trying not to poison the herb garden.)

The Downward Spiral

My cell phone, already notorious for dropping calls and turning itself off entirely at the end of a call, continues on its downward spiral.

This weekend, the plastic on the hinge began to flake off.* Soon I had a sort of cyber-hybrid look (think Seven of Nine from Star Trek, or Adam from Buffy the Vampire Slayer):

The hinge now feels so flimsy that I wonder each time I flip open the phone if this will be its last hurrah.** It's almost enough to make me stop playing the tetris demo game every five minutes on the subway.

I've seen worse -- imagine cell phones with huge cracks all over their face, held together by a polyurethane coat or duct tape -- but this degeneration does not bode well. After all, plastic does not have the same self-healing properties as skin (an odd fact, when you think about the term plastic surgery for procedures which can only be successful to the extent that the skin is not like plastic).

*Possibly due to an adjacent pack of cards in my purse inexorably pressing against the phone.... This is actually a more plausible theory than it may sound.
**Then again, I did forget my cell phone at home last weekend. Were I inclined to anthropomorphize electronics, I might think this was payback/abandonment issues....

Look at Me, Mommy, Look at Meeee!

The officers' retreat was fun, especially since we had a few lucky breaks with the weather. Z picked me up afterward. We watched Street Kings, which was interesting (though not as good as last week's Gran Torino), and I asked him a question I'd been wanting to ask. It left me feeling pretty vulnerable, just to ask -- and then clarify -- my question. But there are different levels of vulnerability, after all. We had dinner with his son, who is a real sweetheart, and then I went back to the city.

I was so glad to be at church this morning for the ordination and installation of our new officers. The laying on of hands never ceases to move me. Our pastor took a look back at his first sermon here and explained how his view of the challenges of this church had changed over the course of the year. He's come a long way.