Quick Nap

Prompt: Comfort


Hello Wednesday!

As summer turns to autumn we all put on a cheerful front and declare our love of brown leaves and claim to adore the crisp cold air. At the same time we are chilled and miserable and damp as we put on scratchy socks for the first time since summer and fold up our patio furniture, relegating it to dark corners of the garage.

It’s a comfort issue. Warm breezes are more comfortable than chill ones, bare toes prefer to wiggle freely, an ice-cold drink on a hot day is only marginally rivalled by a hot drink on a bone-chilling near-winter day.

Wait. Those hot steamy mugs sipped while gathered round a fire are almost the definition of comfort. Perhaps we need the un-comfort to truly revel in comfort. Yin and yang, and all that.

In any case, I don’t feel ready for hot chocolate just yet. I would still refer a frosted glass of rosé enjoyed while basking in the illusion of endless summer. For now, anyway.

On the subject of comfort, I’ve been busy writing/compiling an ebook to publish on Kindle, a definite step out of my comfort zone since while publishing is a glorious goal, self-doubt and and impostor-syndrome follow me around too. So I am going to get this book written (it’s a fun guide to setting up a kitchen and pantry for newbies) and out there just to shatter the mystique of publishing. If you like, I’ll announce its launch here when it is on it’s first free Amazon promo.

In the meantime, may I present a few of my favourite cartoons, very loosely related to today’s prompt, “comfort”?

 

cartoon cat schedule

 

cartoon old cat

 

cartoon crocs


Peace and comfort,

~~FP

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Bad Goldfish

Prompt: Unrelated


Hello Wednesday,

As summer approaches we get busier here in tiny town, with gardening, watching fish mate, visitors, making up species names for birds, wondering what “that smell” is, mentally putting out forest fires, and treating sunburn. It is a magical time of year.

We are thinking of getting a puppy. There is a local farm litter of chubby creatures of unknown lineage, and a couple of shepherd/ lab puppies now available at a local SPCA. Life is so easy and peaceful without a puppy, dear Wednesday, so I’m of two minds. My brain is split. My heart wants a cuddly fur ball, but my muscles, joints, and sleep centre all scream ARE YOU SURE?

Decades ago I did this: I woke up in the morning and noted that I felt cheerful enough to hum a random song, that it was supremely easy to propel myself out of bed, that I felt healthy, fit, alert, awake, energetic, and optimistic about the day ahead. I wondered if that moment would be worthy of a spot in my memory. It was a worthy thought. I appreciated, even if for just a fleeting moment, my youth and vigour, and as I now am greeted each morning with bizarre little aches, pains, random bumps, vague mental lapses, and a desire for a puppy, at least I have that vivid sense memory of a time when my body sang, even if my brain was annoying and juvenile.

The saddest thing in the world: a lone duck or Canada goose gliding across the lake,  obviously looking for a missing mate. Also puffins washing up on shore starved to death because global warming has caused their food fish to flee to colder waters further north. Today I recycled a wax milk carton, so I’m part of the solution.

Before I go and peel an orange, may I present a few of my favourite cartoons of no particular theme?

cartoon switch on

cartoon reserved table

cartoon bad goldfish


Love, peace, and happy memories.

~~FP

Freak Flag

Prompt: Freaky


Hello Wednesday! Long time no see!

I’ve been sick and tired (in the literal sense) for the past couple of weeks— a combination of exhaustion from a week-long family reunion and the dense smoke from the surrounding forest fires that sometimes rains ashes and charred pine needles upon us.

We who live in this paradise wonder if this is “the new normal”. Stinking hot summers, fires all around us, unbreathable air— and all because of this “hoax” called climate change? I have pressed my government reps for years about prioritizing global warming as a crisis that will affect generations to come, and in the worst possible way. Now my pristine lake country home has turned, very suddenly over a few years, from a utopia into a dystopia. Is this what our children and grandchildren have to look forward to?

Fortunately, we  have cartoons to save us from despair. At least for today, for now, let’s enjoy a few giggles as I present a few of my favourite cartoons, the first of which corresponds to today’s casual prompt, “freaky”:

cartoon a-young-boy-asks-his-grandfather-barbara-smaller

cartoon step away from the laptop

cartoon beachball


Enjoy the last few precious weeks of summer!

Peace, love, and a clean environment,

~~FP

The Secret of Success [Repost]

Prompt: Viable

dog_puppy_box_75966_

Please think about your legacy, because you’re writing it every day.Gary Vaynerchuck

All the kids had lemonade stands that summer. It was like the hottest corporate trend among the under-sixes.

In keeping with Lord Samuel’s advice of Location, location, location, my neighbor Tally and her best friend Bo set up shop in the choicest spot, right where the cars turned off the highway, and they had a heavy, dark red cooler full of store-bought ice. They charged the most for their glass of lemonade: twenty-five cents. Many cars stopped and purchased Tally and Bo’s lemonade, because of course they didn’t realize there was cheaper, and in some cases, better lemonade further down the road. Also, once Tally and Bo netted a customer, the customer didn’t tend to bother with any other beverage enterprises, because Tally’s product was consistent and always served in a friendly and appreciative manner. They patronized Tally and Bo’s lemonade stand, exclusively and regularly, even if it did cost a quarter.

Virginia and her two sisters had the best lemonade, since it was hand-squeezed, with lots of sugar but not too much, and a tiny slice of fresh lemon floating on the top, which was what her marketing people (her eldest brother) had recommended. They had the manpower to make ice themselves before opening hours, and a place to warehouse the ice, so all the components of their lemonade were fresh and hand-made, which was quite a selling point, when you come to think of it. Their profits, despite the low margin, were impressive. It was just as Henry Ford once said, The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar, is bound to succeed, though their lemonade was twenty cents per glass, not a dollar.

Cody and I had set up shop at an intersection with a stop sign, and to be competitive we charged fifteen cents a glass for our lemonade, which was made from frozen cans to save on time and expenses. Unfortunately, we skimped on the ice, and I could tell by the disappointment in the eyes of some of our clients that the missing ice was an issue, even if the lemonade was “ice cold” as advertised on the signage. Cody always smiled and said “We ran out of ice!”, a lie if ever there was one, and not very effective if it was a repeat customer, who might think we lacked in the area inventory skills, as well as salesmanship. So Cody bit his tongue, for as Steve Jobs said, Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly and get on with improving your other innovations. We added cold Pepsi to our inventory, and just sold it by the can, thereby avoiding the necessity of stocking more paper cups.

Sales were relatively brisk at first, and aside from the ice, there were no registered complaints. But I could visualize where I wanted the business to go, and so far Cody and I were falling short.

To meet the challenge with the ice, we checked with our investors, but since I’d already got an advance on my allowance, no further loan was proffered, even though my request was backed by viable projections. I mean, once we had the ice solution, which involved finding a supplier, we would be huge: too big to fail. I found it rather short-sighted on my mother’s part, and Cody and I faced a disturbing dip in sales.

Then, a miracle happened.

The secret of success in life, said Benjamin Disraeli, is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.

When Molly had six puppies, Cody and I knew what to do.

We set up a small table with an umbrella and three chairs, which while a bit tatty from languishing in the garden shed, provided shade and a place for clients to sit and enjoy their beverages. As soon as the puppies were old enough, Cody and I put the box o’puppies in the shade of the umbrella.

There were cars lined up round the block, and people, tens or twenties of people, buying our cold but iceless lemonade, mingling and chatting, and, mostly, surrounding the puppies and waiting for their turn to cuddle one.

Tally and Bo came by, and so did Virginia, her three sisters, and her eldest brother, and while they all sniffed at the quality of our product, they appreciated our creativity, and just loved the puppies. I wasn’t bothered by their consternation, since Business is a combination of war and sport (Andre Maurois), after all.

Molly was Cody’s dog, so he supervised the puppy division, while I poured, took cash, and kept inventory. Which, needless to say, was usually depleted before our energy and ambition were, on any given day.

About a week later, my sister got a skateboard. No one else in the neigbourhood had one at that time. It was dark blue, with flames painted on the base. Cody and I closed the stand, since strategy meetings, customer service, and day-to-day operations were taking up so much of our time. We were also eager to reinvest our profits.

And as Walt Disney said, A man should never neglect his family for business.


  • Original Prompt: Legacy, March 10, 2016.

No Pressure

Prompt: Loop


Hello Wednesday, June 21, you summer solstice,

Today is my favourite day of the year because it is the longest day of the year. Sitting outside at 10 pm with a glass of wine, watching the sun set, is worth the harsh 5 am stabs of light. Yes, I am a night person.

The word “solstice” means “sun-stopping”. Sun-stopping!  That is not a magical astronomical anomaly, alas, but but is so-called because the point on the horizon where the sun appears to rise and set, stops and reverses direction after this day. It is an eternal loop.

Speaking of loops, the first of my favourite cartoons this week is tenuously related to the Daily Prompt, loop:

cartoon tortoise and hare


Also eternal…

cartoon peacocks


They say people of high intelligence enjoy black humor…

cartoon chef


Welcome summer!

~~FP