Kelly In Catty

This blog is Kell's attempt to keep in touch with friends far away who complain that I don't e-mail nearly enough.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Day Off vs. Working at Home

I'm having a day off. It's not even 9 AM EST, and I've been on the phone 2 times with the office.


Thursday, June 29, 2006

Higher Ground

I just got off the phone with my friend, Vern. His basement and garage flooded in the recent East Coast Deluge... He said, "I think it's God's way of nicely telling me to get rid of things..." He said he felt pretty good because he didn't loose anything he couldn't part with... but there was water in his home office... I'm looking around MY home office right now - and thinking, "How completely awful that would be..."

I usually don't mind the rain - but until yesterday it had been raining for days and days and days. I'm still amazed that now, even as it stopped, the waters in some parts of my area continued to rise.

If you saw Good Morning America today - or The Today show, you saw some of the areas within a few miles of my house. I live about a hundred feet from a canal and two miles from a lake - all very swollen. I live just a little higher up. There are benefits to living on a hill.

Here are a few photos taken by the local paper (Betty E. Cauler, photographer) - just to show you a few kinda scary things:

How sad it must be - because this town (Easton, PA) got hit by an equally devastating flood last year.

Tonight - the sky is clear - and the winds are blowing - evaporating all that water...


Not Hard Enough

Trixie said my quiz was too easy - so I'll just quiz y'all here. See if you know the following about Kell:

1) Kell was recently "forced" to purchase another camera package. From what company?

a) Olympus
b) Nikon
c) Leica

2) T or F: Kell has had an affair with an unnamed Opera Singer

3) Why doesn't Kell kill the spiders in her old house?

a) Because she's afraid of them
b) Because she's entranced by the patterns of their webs
c) Because they eat all of the other bugs in her home
d) Because she figures if there's one, there are a thousand, and she can't win

4) If given the choice, how would Kell spend her next day off?

a) Shopping in Doylestown, PA
b) Going someplace chi-chi with Franda
c) Driving around with Dave
d) Any of the above

5) Kell's first purchased cassette tape was:

a) She's So Unusual by Cyndi Lauper
b) Billy Joel's Greatest Hits
c) Hunting High & Low by A-Ha
d) Circles in the Stream by Bruce Cockburn

6) Kell's first purchased CD was:

a) Seven and the Ragged Tiger by Duran Duran
b) You Pay Your Money and You Take Your Chance by Bruce Cockburn
c) Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen
d) Ten Summoner's Tales by Sting

7) Kell's first car was an '87 Toyota Tercel. What did she name it?

a) Sheeba
b) Seven, the Ragged Tiger
c) The Sin Bin
d) Jasper

8) A teenage Kell once thought she would attempt to play a song (in front of a full audience) on what instrument (that she had never had a lesson on)?

a) piano
b) guitar
c) banjo
d) flute

9) How'd that go?

a) surprisingly well
b) worse than you could imagine
c) a few people recognized the tune

10) Kell's first childhood dog was named:

a) Raccus du Braccus
b) Inky
c) Gladys
d) Samantha Pudding

11) Which of the following animals has Kell NEVER had for a pet?

a) A flying squirrel
b) A boa constrictor
c) A tarantula
d) A crow

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Monday, June 26, 2006

I've Caught The Quiz Bug

HP and Trixie have written their own quizzes. Far be it from me not to join this party:


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Singin' In The Rain

This weekend, the band played for a friend of ours, a race promoter. He organizes runners and sponsors - and throws races called "The Ugly Mudder" and "Double Trouble." It's funny playing at such events, because - well, I only ever ran in college when I had to for a class - and even then, traded running for bicycling as soon as I learned that was okay. I now only run when I'm chased (which isn't very often at all)

Anyway, the race was held in a huge, beautiful state park - rain or shine... There was little shine. It poured. Hats off to my friend Karen, who ran 15K in the rain, came back covered with mud - and said, "This wasn't fun." Hats off to her for finishing - but the biggest hats off - was because she came to the race in the first place, knowing it would be difficult to run through the sog and bog of the state park. I honestly don't know what motivates dedication like that - Maybe it's what my artist friend John once explained to me, defining his own passion: "Kelly, artists create art. That's what they do." - With that in mind, runners run - and singers sing - even in the rain.

(NOTE: The band sounded pretty good - warm, damp weather seems to be a key to a good voice, although it threw the instruments into a bit of havoc.)

Ok - the funny thing about the afternoon were the prizes - Race winners enjoyed mason jars filled with Tootsie Rolls. First, Fran asked, "Kelly, what's with the Tootsie Rolls? Seems counter productive to runners..." I suggested that they were energy food. Fran, unsatisfied with the answer, conferred with the band expert, Scott, who then came to me and asked, "Why does Fran think I would know about the Tootsie Rolls? I shrugged... I really had NO CLUE as to why Tootsie Rolls would ever be a prize. (For the most part, can't think of any occasion in the last 20 years where where I've eaten one - or thought much about them at all...)

So I asked the promoter - "What's with the Tootsie Rolls?"

"Well," he thoughtfully replied. I braced myself for some secret racers' wisdom, or some bit of promoter tradition... "They're really just to provide a little color to fill the jar - and they're the cheapest candy I can fill them with."


A racer nearby was listening, and asked if he could have Hershey Kisses next year... The promoter completely ignored the comment, handed off the jar, and said, "Kell - I'll give you a check. I just have to get the checkbook from my girlfriend."

"I've heard that before," quipped Scott, jokingly...

At the end of the day, we returned home damp and a little muddy ourselves... Dave and Fran helped Scott change his shorted car battery (which Scott's cut of the take completely covered...)

So ends another chapter in playing in a promising local band. I'm so grateful we didn't get paid in Tootsie Rolls!


Saturday, June 24, 2006

Things to Love About Pennsylvania

Since Tiecen now challenged me, I have to note a few things I love about Pennsylvania. It's a great state - and from Mack Trucks to Dixie Cups, there is truly something here for everyone:

1) The drive across PA on Rte. 80.
2) Entenmen's Crumb-Topped Donuts
3) Slinky, Silly Putty, and Crayola Crayons
4) Philadelphia, once the nation's capital
5) The Liberty Bell
6) Herr's Potato Chips and Gibbles Pretzels
7) Olympus (welcome, Olympus, to your new home in PA!)
8) Hershey's Kisses - and Hershey Park - where the streets are landscaped with cocoa mulch, and the lightstands are Hershey Kisses.
9) Blue Mountain Summit Inn (along the Appalachian Trail) (If I were writing about New Jersey, I'd have to give a nod to the Red Wolf Tavern)
10) Kell.
11) Museums: The Andy Warhol Museum and the Mutter Museum = Pittsburgh and Philadelphia Respectively
12) Lake Erie in the wintertime
13) The beautiful Poconos in beautiful October
14) Glen Onoko Falls
16) The History of The Walking Purchase - Google it. It's an interesting piece of deceptive history.
17) Orasure, makers of the world's most accurate -10-minute AIDS test - It's implications for the global fight against AIDS is astonishing.
18) Nazareth, PA - Home of Mario Andretti; Easton, PA - Home of Larry Holmes.
19) Sweet Creams, Stroudsburg, PA - Home of the world's finest ice Cream
20) Scranton - Home of "The Office."
21. Martin Guitar
22. Marshmallow Peeps (I recommend the Christmas cookie ones)

Maybe I'll finish this list later - It's a good start though.


Friday, June 23, 2006

$.50 Screw

It’s Backwards Day:

Priceless: Me trying to figure out why my gearshift fell apart last night. I couldn’t find any spare screws. The headstalk was spinning on the stick. I moved it. The gear-button-thingie popped out (spronnng!) – followed by the spring. They were greasy. I wrapped them in a tissue and called Dave.

“Bring it on over,” says Dave, “Does it drive?”

I assured him that I could still press the greasy, headless gearshift stalk and put the car into drive.

Once at Dave’s, the whole thing seemed hopelessly… apart.

85$ - The cost of the Honda Mechanics to reassemble my gearstalk thingie.

1$ - The cost of the two replacement screws…


Monday, June 19, 2006

Red Carpet photos

Last week, I photographed my first red carpet event - Mack in Pixar's new Cars, is a Mack Truck (voiced by John Ratzenberger... He said he'd do this role if the truck was a Mack... His father drove a Mack Truck) - Well, here in the land of Mack World Headquarters - this is a big deal - so Mack invited 250 United Way kids to enjoy the film on a beautiful Saturday Morning. Here's the proof!
(Note: This is what happens when a Cub Scout says, "Let me take YOUR picture, Kell!" - I can't believe I handed an 8-year old my camera!)

This is the official Mack Bulldog - star of "Mack Reality TV."


Friday, June 16, 2006

When Neptune Aligns with Mercury

I've never believed in horoscopes - or that the placement of the stars has much to say about my personal life. For one - it never explained how twins - who sometimes have completely opposite personalities, could be grouped under the same personal destiny. It never explained, how someone who has the same birthday as I have - could possibly be in another place in life as I am. Tom Waits (who has the same birthday as I) should simply not be making so much money!

Seriously - the Zodiac is completely lost on me.

I'm going through a busy time - with lots of important decisions to make... and tonight, I sat down to take a breather with my favorite magazine, Vanity Fair - because Dominic Dunne always has something interesting to say about interesting people I'd rather read about than meet. Flipping through, I stopped short at Michael Lutin's "Planetarium" Horoscope Column.

I read the entry under "Libra," thinking that maybe just maybe, it may have something to say to me. (Note, I'm not a Libra.) It did. I read on. Every sign from the great archer to the quizzical twins had something pertinent to say about my life. I realize this makes me a pan-horoscopist, but come on - Shouldn't I take comfort in whatever place comfort is to be found?

Libra while we're on the subject, insists: "Not everyone is like you... Don't take it personally." - I don't believe Ben Franklin could've given me better advice at this juncture.

Cancer offers me this wisdom: "Your omnipresent feelings of responsibility towards others, which stem as much from guilt as from generosity, make it easy for people to play on your conscience." - Story of my life!

Leo says, "The wounded people you're dealing with are capable of only so much - you may have better luck motivating them if you encourage them instead of just beating them up..." - So I should be encouraging myself rather than... my - self - up... oh.

Virgo encourages, "Hey, everybody gets hit with challenges at one time or another. Denial doesn't help, but neither does making a big deal out of problems that won't last forever..." - Wow. I wonder if Dr. Phil said this first...

Scorpio? - "Professionally speaking, this month is critical - so for God's sake, keep your personal life out of your business life..." Amen, I say - and thanks, Scorpio!

Sagittarius: "You must have an angel watching over you. How else could you manage not to crumble under the weight of the grand cross now spanning your 3rd, 6th, 9th, and 12th houses?" - Where I appreciate the sentiment, I can't help wonder what the address of my 12th house is.

Capricorn, my steady confidante, says: "You are feeling passionate at the moment and if your needs aren't being met, you're likely to go on the warpath..." Why yes, I feel a battle waging...

At the dawning of the Age of Aquarious, I learned "luckily, there are people who demand that you keep on dancing, no matter how crummy you feel" - May I have this dance? Please?

Meanwhile, Pisces, smelling something fishy, suggests a piece of irony worth saving: "When you look around and see the madness so many people get caught up in, you make a concerted effort to follow your own path, ignore 'practical' advice you consider stupid, and do what you know to be right..." - Nuff said.

Aries observed that "Only your closest intimates will know not only that you don't like being onstage but that half the time you're on the verge of bursting into tears." - That has NEVER been more true than this week.

Taurus, always the practical one, says, "Guess what? There's a great big wave coming toward you, and sooner or later you are just going to have to move your blanket farther up the beach." I'm going, I'm going!

Finally, Gemini - my yin and yang - notes, "Communication is the key. You've simply got to endure a few very serious conversations, which does not mean going from barking and shouting to complete silence." - That's so freakily close to home...

I ask you - Why subscribe to only one house, when I can fall at the feet of my new muse, Michael Lutin? Shouldn't I be able to have it all?


A (not-so) Fabulous Waste Of Time (pt.3)

Check This Out!


Thursday, June 15, 2006

You Can Do It; We Can Help

I was in the Home Depot tonight - buying a quart of paint so I can finish these chairs I've been making - I'll post a photo of them when I'm done - Anyway, while the young 20-something mixing my paint was waiting on me, a co-worker of his came up and handed him an in-store test. It was a completed employee test administered by Home Depot.

Co-Worker: Here ya go. Just fill it in.
20: But it's already filled in!
CW: Yep. Just your name.
20: Wow! This is my kinda test! All right! Thanks, man!

20 then smiled at his audience of me, and two others standing at the counter:

20: This is just like it was in high school.

At that moment, I had a strange flash of a vision. The kid stood in a house (presumably his parents')... swatting at flies as the building's foundation was being eaten by termites...

I grabbed my paint and went home. It had better be the right color.


Friday, June 09, 2006


Check this out.


Early Morning Flashbacks

I've been thinking about my blog friend, HP lately - because she's lost her father (and that's the saddest thing I can think of) - It's got me thinking about the deaths in my family this year, specifically, that of my nephew, Jason (here's the link in case you want to know). I miss him so much. I had a dream about him the other night. He came back... but he was healed of his disease - no trach, no wheelchair, no motors. He walked up to us... And me, in all my practicality said, "Hey - where ya been? Are you hungry?" He nodded. When I woke up, it was bitter sweet. It was nice to see him again, but the ache rekindled.

I was speaking with one of Jay's nurses this morning, and she revealed to me for the first time that she had lost a 10-month old child... and it took years to get to the point where she didn't break down every time someone said something or even did something nice for her... She asked if she thought it would help my sister to talk to her. I didn't know - but I gave her the address and suggested she write a card. Hopefully, my sister will find it comforting to talk to someone who's been through the same thing.

I hope I'm not meddling.

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Thursday, June 08, 2006


I have a friend who shares some sort of crazy connection with. I can't explain it, but we come from different areas - different worlds - different financial histories - different education - different psyches - different, different, different.

He was a figure skater - I couldn't figure out any skate move but forward.

He grows beautiful bonsai trees - I killed one within months.

He acts. I stay behind the camera.

et cetera, cet etera...

Toe-MAY-toe, Toe-MAH toe. Ok. That was the last one!

Anyway, years ago, after we first met, I was driving home to my woodsy dwelling, and saw a momma fox and her babies. The next morning, I saw the same baby fox - or at least I assume so, in a corn field. I pulled the car over... we starred at each other for a long, long time. I called my very suburban-dwelling friend. "You're kidding," he told me. "I saw the biggest old grey fox yesterday!"

We don't talk a whole lot anymore, but every now and then, when I see a fox, I'll call - usually to the standard "I was just thinking about you!" greeting. If I haven't seen a fox, but merely feel like calling, It's not uncommon to hear, "I saw a fox this week. I knew you were going to call..."

Now, I believe in certain phenomena - but I rarely, if ever seek out this kind of thing. I have no explanation - nor can I make this story any more interesting than this - but I'm pretty fascinated by it all...


Saturday, June 03, 2006

Things that Astounded Me

I'm cleaning my home office today - in fact, I've cleaned out the two closets that frightened me the most - you know what I'm talking about. I'm exhausted - but it's done.

In my cleaning, I found a huge pile of old journals - The kinds I needed before I had a blog (ha) - and found a list of things I'd written that astounded me when I was younger. They're kind of funny - so I'm copying them here:

1) When I was young, I was astounded to learn that dinosaurs weren't the fossilized remains that were covered with the dirt known to us now as the Appalachian Mountains (or hills, if you're from Colorado) - I really thought they all died, and since no one was around to bury them, just laid there, decayed, and eventually got covered up with rocks, dirt, and plant matter.

When I was in second grade, a friend took me on my first trip to NY City, where we visited the Museum of Natural History. When I saw how *small* the dinosaurs were compared to how large I *thought* they were, I was actually kind of disappointed.

2) I was astounded to learn that Bob-Tail was the name of the horse. It never dawned on me that Bob-Tail was a name I thought it was some sort of harness that held the bells on...

3) When I was in Kindergarten, it was astonishing to me that birthdays marked the number of years you'd been alive. I told my best kindergarten friends, Steven and Theo, but they didn't believe me.

4) I think I posted a story awhile back about how astounded I was at BIRTH. When my father and mother told the 6-year old Kelly "The puppies are coming out soon," I didn't think they came from my dog... I learned quickly that puppies didn't come out from under beds or dressers... And I was a little grossed out.


Friday, June 02, 2006

Eddie Munster's At The Office

Look who visited my office today - Eddie Munster! He's sitting at my desk like some kind of hot dog. (I'm so corny)