Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Pants, and the fitting thereof

I have two pairs of pants in two different sizes from a mail-order catalog waiting for me to send/take them back because neither pair fit. They were too small. I have pants in both sizes in my closet that fit nicely--one pair has no elastic in the waist, no stretch in the fabric, buttons and zips up the front, and fits very comfortably. The two pair that have to go back have both stretch and elastic, but the buttons won't fasten. They're made by different manufacturers, which is why--even though they're supposedly the same size, they're not.

I cannot be the only person who finds this a huge pain. It's not an issue just for large-size women like me. Even women who wear size 6 have problems because the Lee Jeans size 6 is not the same as the ... oh, Ann Klein size 6. (If Ann Klein makes jeans.) There needs to be some kind of standard--something with a waist/hip/length measurement maybe, like in men's pants. Women's pants would need that extra hip measurement, because there isn't a consistent waist-to-hip ratio. Some of us have larger backsides than others. But there ought to be some way to be able to order a pair of pants--or pull them off the rack/shelf in the store--and have a reasonable expectation that they will go around said backside.

I've dealt with the "high-water pants" all my life--it's incredibly hard for me to find pants that are long enough, especially since I'm not quite tall enough for the "tall sizes" but too tall for "average." I was really hoping these jeans would fit because they were a whole inch longer than the other pants in the catalog--all of which were for "average" height. But they didn't, and now they have to go back.

I do understand the vanity issue, that women like to say they wear a size 6--when they only wear a size 6 in, oh, Ralph Lauren clothes, and a size 8 or 10 in some other manufacturer's clothing. But it's still a pain. And since I was a size 12 from the time I hit my full height of 5'8" or so, I can tell you truthfully that size 12 is NOT fat--especially if you're on the tall side. (We will not discuss what size I am now--but I will never see 12 again...) All I'm asking for is a little consistency.

Why is it so impossible for the clothing industry to come up with a consistent, across-the-board sizing? Anybody out there have a clue?

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Other people's vacations

Summer is vacation season. I like my vacations. Other people's, not so much. This week, the other person at the dayjob who handles the same things I do is out. So I'm having to do her every-day things as well as my own. I have been coming in to the newspaper office in the mornings, doing the "first thing" stuff, and then writing for an hour or two before digging into the regular stuff. And I'm tired. (whine, moan, complain)

The worst part is that my sprained elbow is still very sore. My arm hurts--it has turned spectacular colors all down the underside, and my whole elbow area is green--and it never touched the ground when I fell. I caught myself on my hand, but it's the elbow that's sore. As someone put it--the bruise is "where the pain went." So, since it's sore, I'm holding myself funny, which makes my back hurt too, and my shoulder--I'm just in sorry shape all over. (whine, moan, complain)

I would just like to lie down and do nothing for about 3 days. I might get tired of it after one, but I'd like the opportunity. No laundry. No cooking. No writing. Just vegetating. Maybe a little reading. By the end of it, I might be ready to jump back into the swing of things. Poor, poor, pitiful me.

I'm cranking out one, maybe two pages a day. It's not getting me very far, but it's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, as my mama used to say. I think I'm going to see about going down to the rec center and getting my exercise in there, instead of trying to walk outside. I keep tripping over stuff, and that's NO fun.

It's still hot. No rain. I wish we could figure out how to do this swap thing...

I'm going to stop now before I depress myself any worse. No more whining! (Today, anyway)

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Yeah. I fell again. I have GOT to quit doing this. Especially since this time, I hurt my arm. I can scarcely use it. My fingers work, and it bends and such (though it's owie), and I can even press it down on the arm rest or keyboard shelf, but the muscles are strained so I have no grip strength, and can't even exert enough pressure to fasten my seatbelt. (And when I type, after a while, it starts to ache from the muscle movement up near the elbow.) So, yeah. Need to stop this.

I've had offers to trade rain in Sweden (and maybe France) for some of our heat. I would be happy to do this--if I could just figure out how. We could really use the rain.

The city and tree experts have finally decided that very few of the 109-year-old live oaks down the median of Broadway (one of the few streets to have a historic designation) survived last fall's hurricane. They poured water to them after the salt hurricane surge went down, and waited to see if they'd put out new leaves this spring...but most of them didn't. People are all up in arms, insisting the trees are just dormant, and that they'll come back if we just wait. But if they haven't come back by now, it's pretty much "dead" certain that they won't. So now, all those trees have to come down so new trees can be planted. There are also palm trees in the medians. The palms survived the salt water, but not the oaks. I think they're planning a variety of trees to replace the dead ones, magnolias among them.

The magnolias in our yard survived the storm. They don't look real hot, but they have leaves, and they have even bloomed--even the one in the front yard where the storm surge came up to the door. The Norfolk Island pine in the back is doing just fine--though it did lose some leaves. The airplane/spider plants and ferns and sago palms and other shrubs all recovered nicely too. The only plants that died were these pink polka-dot plants that were on the front row of the flower beds--that looked kind of scraggly anyway. I really ought to replace them with something. But my elbow's too hurty today. (whine, moan, whimper, complain--yeah, I'm pathetic.)(But I can still type!)

Anyway, that's what the mention of rain makes me think of. All the trees that died partly because, after Ike, it didn't rain...

Hurricane season has arrived again. Y'all keep us in your thoughts/prayers that all the big ones go somewhere else this year...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Hot, Hot, HOT!!

We are not talking attractiveness (for which there is no charge) or awesomeness (ditto), when we speak of hot. (We are fans of Kung Fu Panda at my house.) We are speaking of--when you walk outside the air-conditioned cool of the house or office, the heat smashes into you like a brick. A really hot brick. Yeah, it got hot this week.

I am not surprised. This is Texas. It is summer. Texas + summer = HOT.

The temperature is not that hot, here on the island. It's 89F, (almost 32C) which would be reasonable--if the humidity were not somewhere in the vicinity of, oh, 900 percent or so. Yes, I do realize that technically, it is impossible to have a greater percentage than 100. But it feels like 900% humidity. If you were here, you would agree with me. Walking from the front door to the car door will have the average person sweating through his T-shirt. (Yeah, I know it sounds gross. How do you think it feels???)

So, of course, the crepe myrtles are blooming. They like the hot weather, don't really get to blooming much till the hot as Hades weather arrives. Our little island doesn't have as many crepe myrtles as I'm used to, in other Texas cities. We have oleanders, and the oleanders have been blooming like crazy for at least a month already. I figure they've got most of another month to go. Oleanders bloom a long time. Galveston has lots of oleanders, I'm told, because they are salt-resistant. They are not salt-proof, because the oleanders which were submerged longer and/or deeper in the Hurricane Ike surge have not returned. But most of the semi-submerged shrubs are putting out new shoots, or blooming valiantly on the few stems left living. Those less swamped are solid pink or peach or white with blooms. They're just gorgeous.

The granddog and I went for a beach walk today. It was hot already at 8 a.m., but there was a stiff wind blowing, which helped. Dolly was a very good dog, didn't pull, didn't try to go smell the other dogs or lick the people. The sand was extremely soft and hard to walk in, even where it was wet. We were there right at high tide, so the wet sand was dry underneath, hence soft. Tired me out right quick. So we didn't walk very far, but it was a good walk.

I think part of the reason Dolly was such a good dog is her little "adventure" last week. I went out to go walking one morning, and there was no Dolly in the yard. I made the boy get out of bed (before noon!) and he went to see if she'd gone to chase birds at the beach, and I drove down to the humane society. Apparently, she got out of the yard (a board on the fence came loose) and got picked up as a stray and taken to the humane society. Her boy tends to take her collar off when she's in the yard, so she didn't have her collar or tags. I was able to identify her right then, but we couldn't take her home till later when they officially opened for the day. She looked very mournful when I didn't get her out of the cage right then, all--"Gigi! Don't leave me!" And she was VERY happy when we did come get her to take her home.

Spent the weekend visiting with relatives, seeing the nephew graduate. Nice, snappy ceremony, with eating to follow. Ice cream the night of the graduation, and cook-out with cake and M&Ms the next day. I made myself go upstairs and work Saturday morning, and got almost 6 pages done. That's a lot for one day, the way things have gone lately. It was a good visit.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Wednesday words

I was trying to think of something alliterative for the title, to go with Wednesday, since I don't really have much to say today. Of course, I first came up with "Thursday thoughts" because I keep thinking today is Thursday for some reason. But it's not. It's Wednesday.

So what goes with Wednesday? Woes? Well, but I'm not really woeful today. It's been a pretty good day for me. Okay, there's a condo fire over on the Seawall, bad enough they've asked fire trucks from Texas City and La Marque and Santa Fe or Hitchcock, or one of those other towns across the bay, to come cover the rest of the city while all the Galveston fire trucks are dealing with the fire--but it's about 40 blocks from my house, and while I'm sympathetic, it hasn't really affected my day.

What else? Wisdom? *snort* Yeah right. On rare occasions, I might stumble over something that vaguely resembles wisdom, but ... Rare, remember?

Words. I am writing words on Wednesday. That's nicely generic, and promises nothing more than that the words be strung together in an order that will make sense. (Actually, it doesn't even promise that, but with any luck, that's what you're getting.)

So here they are. My words.

Like I said, it's been a pretty good day for me today, and that's because of words. As in, I got a decent number of them written today. I need to be writing more, but... I'm getting some done. And really, that's all I had to say. The writing is being written. The story is going. I'm not exactly sure where it's going, but it IS going.

So y'all go look at the fire pictures... 'Cause that's all that's happening around here today.