Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Front and Center at all Cost

Salon.com has taken a slightly different look at the State of the Union with a story on 'aisle hogs,' members of Congress who scurry into the House chamber early on the day of the State of the Union in order to secure seats on the aisle and those oh so important to their ego seconds on camera as they shake the President's hand on his way to the podium. And who should be second on the list of the top five aisle hogs but Texas and Houston's very own Sheila Jackson Lee? It's enough to make me want to deny being a native Texan.

Furthermore in the updated version I read, it seems that even this article has had no restraining effect on Ms. Lee in her neverending search for facetime on TV. Proving that it's impossible to shame Ms. Lee into forsaking her blatant grabs for attention, she was front and center again tonight getting her moment on camera and in the spotlight with President Obama. On the bright side, she's not my representative. But she is the representative for many of my fellow Houstonians, who, once upon a time had a woman of great principle, Barbara Jordan, looking after their interests in Congress. They deserve better than the grandstanding Lee, who, from what I've been able to tell, has as her first priority her unending quest for attention and feeding the black hole that is her ego.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Here We Go Again...

Evidently it's time for Larry and me to embark on another building project. I thought I would be working on loom as my next major project here at the house, but there's been a change of plans.

A month or so ago, I mentioned to Larry that I was thinking about getting rid of the 'armoire'/entertainment cabinet in the den. This particular piece of furniture is approximately 40" wide, 20" deep and about 7' tall. For a while I've been thinking about what to do with it or about it as it's just a little overpowering in its current location. Plus, I knew that sooner or later Larry would be wanting a larger TV set. Not to mention that from my favorite chair, I can't see about 2 inches or more of the screen due to the way the doors on this piece are designed.

Originally I had thought about finding an old buffet or similar piece that we could repurpose as a TV/media stand. But after spending some time antiquing this weekend and not finding anything that would work, I began to think about designing something that would work for our equipment. The sense of urgency on getting something in place was due to Larry deciding that it was time to go for a bigger set. He found a really good price on one and ending up buying it on Saturday. So, we spent a good part of yesterday afternoon looking online for anything that would fit my aesthetic requirements. Nothing did. So, I sat down with pencil and graph paper and came up with this:
It's a take on a buffet, but it's designed to fit our equipment. The unit measures 52" wide, by 20" deep and 38" high. The box measures 26" high. In the center it has adjustable open shelves that measure 20"wide, and then 2 12" wide doors on either side. The doors will be open frames with curtains of gathered tulle inserted in the openings. It will be trimmed out with molding along the edge of the table top and on the bottom (shown). I plan on painting it white with the center shelving part painted a pale aqua, which will give the den an additional spot of color.

We went out this afternoon and bought the materials. I have done the measurements for the box, so hopefully Larry will be able to make those cuts tomorrow and we'll get the basic box together. We're hoping that we can be ready for me to start painting next weekend.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Effing Elves

Every year it's the same old thing. Come Thanksgiving weekend, I start hauling boxes of Christmas stuff out of the hall closet. And I zip around the house putting up Christmas trees, lights, little stuffed snowmen, switching out my reqular dishes for Christmas dishes, you name it. This year, in a moment of crazed craftiness, I even made poinsettia fabric covered lampshades for my lamps. And it all looks beautiful. Then all of a sudden, it's over. Everything looks tired, the tree is dropping needles faster than a heroin addict, and I have to put all this crap away.

I hate putting away the Christmas stuff. Hate. Hate. Hate. Now putting up Christmas stuff is fun. You get to listen to or sing Christmas carols. You can have White Christmas playing in the dvd. The tree smells wonderful. The poinsettias are beautiful. You can drink eggnog w/ bourbon or hot buttered rum or spiked hot chocolate. But after Christmas? Bah freaking humbug. For starters, I never can figure out a good time to do the deed. I have friends who take the tree down asap after Christmas. Other friends deal with the mess on New Year's day or Epiphany. But we always seem to have stuff going on. And this past season set a record for being busy the week after Christmas. Add in a week like the one I've just been through and I'm desperate for just few elves to zip in after midnight so that I can wake up to a house with nary a shriveled poinsettia petal to be found and a nice, neat hallway closet with everything in its box and each box in its place. But since the chance that a cadre of elves will knock on my door and beg to be allowed to put away my Christmas decorations is nonexistent, I guess I just need to gut up and go start hauling all those boxes and bins out of the hall closet.

Either that or decide I like the way the dining room table looks with piles of Christmas decorations on it and that the dead Christmas tree in the living room adds a nice little redneck touch to the place.