I moved in here April of 2000. Every year, the flowering pear trees across the street have made for a beautiful spring. Up until about three years ago, every year the petals would fall all over the street and sidewalk, and then the leaves would appear. The past three years, no petals have fallen. They just weren’t there anymore. Puzzling. Very puzzling. Then there is this year. No flowers. Well, I think I may have seen one or two, but it could have been the sun glinting off a leaf. Here are some pictures from various years. The last are taken today. Is it because it has been so dry? What could cause failure to bloom? Anyone? I find this very worrisome. Is it a harbinger of things to come? I know a lot of people choose to deny climate change. It is a pretty scary concept, and pretending to yourself it isn’t happening is a bit of a comforting option, even though in the back of your mind you have to know you are lying to yourself. But no bloom. No bloom. This can’t be good.



Not sure of the date on this one.

Today, just a few minutes ago.

Also today.

On a nothing to do with trees note, I have been really struggling. Lots of pain, walking is difficult, standing is very painful. See my doctor tomorrow. Hoping she can help. I did make a salad last evening. Chopped cucumber, chopped avocado, chopped scallions, mayo, lime juice, salt, and tobasco. Lovely. I like salad, so long as it’s not lettuce salad. Nooooo. Today I am going to make mango caprese, which is exactly like the tomato one, but with mango instead of tomato. I love mango and decided to try this once and yep. It’s a good one.

It was my birthday Thursday. My friend Tess usually brings a small cake for us to share, but had an appointment for a treatment, so brought a small cheesecake Tuesday. Yum. Spent the actual day alone and feeling like crap, but had a lovely chat with number one daughter which perked me right up, then Friday went to Westport to spend a couple days with my friends. Oh, my. Such a good time. We had tacos and steak on the grill, sat on the deck and talked and laughed, sat at the table, in the kitchen, in the living room and talked and laughed and just had a fantastic time.I did have to watch Shark Tank, which was pretty ick. I only have streaming, not regular tv, so had not seen this before. And hope to never see it again, either. Saturday was gray and cool, but we took a drive to the ocean which is just a ways down the street. Stayed in the car and just watched the waves. The dog started barking and when I looked there was a seagull on a poll who looked like he was just daring the dog to to something. Ha! Could not sleep at all Friday night, so when I got home Saturday night, I fell asleep around nine pm and slept 14 hours. Up a couple of hours. slept a few more. Guess I was tired. I am so fortunate to have good friends. These two, and the two who live near me. Lucky Jean is happy to have good friends. I had not been there since August of 2019, just before the pandemic. Was so good to be back.


From a Tumblr post

” “In four years of medical school, three years of residency training, and nearly 30 years in practice as a family physician I have never been asked “what is the definition of a woman?”

Seems obvious that one could just look at the genitalia. You’re either a boy or a girl, right? Well, not always. Although it’s rare, many people are born with ambiguous genitalia. The OB/GYN and the pediatrician are simply unable to determine the sex. Historically, in consultation with the family, a sex would be assigned. Turns out that often as not the child would ultimately identify with the sex they were not assigned.

So it must be the chromosomes. The 23rd pair in humans is designated XX in females and XY in males. The Y chromosome determines male characteristics, so you are either a boy or a girl, right? Well, not always.

In embryology the default setting is female. The Y chromosome normally triggers male development. Ever heard of testicular feminization syndrome, now more properly referred to as androgen insensitivity syndrome? Sometimes an XY baby is born with essentially normal female external genitalia. The body simply does not respond to androgens associated with the Y chromosome. As the child grows and enters puberty there will be normal female breast development and other feminine characteristics. Unless genetic testing has been done at some point, the abnormality is not discovered until the teenage daughter presents to the doctor with concerns that menstruation has not started. Examination will reveal that the vagina ends in a blind pouch, no uterus, and undescended testes. They are often very feminine – cheerleaders, beauty pageant contestants, etc.

Nearly everybody is a “normal” XX or XY, has anatomy to match, and is perfectly at peace with themselves. But not everybody. Several studies have identified how the sexual diversity between men and women does not exclusively involve the genitals, but also the development of different brain areas. And just as genitals can be ambiguous, or not match what XY would predict,so can the brain in some instances develop in a different direction than the genitals. Animal studies suggest this is likely due to atypical levels of sex hormones in the womb.

One of several such structures studied in the human brain have involved an area of the limbic system known as the nucleus of the terminal stria. The volume of this area appears to be influenced by the stimulation of sex hormones during brain development, and in men the volume of this area is greater than in women. Scans of this area in transgender women (genetic/anatomic men who identify as females) resemble that of non transgender females. In this matter gender identity develops from the complex interactions between sex hormones and brain during its development; moreover, this appears to be genetically predetermined and is not influenced by hormonal stimuli during the adult phase. It is important to understand that at this point it is not known for certain what causes gender dysphoria or incongruence, just as we don’t know for certain what makes someone gay or for that matter, left handed.

Gender dysphoria often begins in childhood and can lead to severe distress, depression, and suicide. Treatment includes thorough psychological and medical evaluation and psychotherapy. Hormonal treatments in children are designed to delay puberty until decisions about desired gender characteristics can be made. The treatments are not permanent and are REVERSIBLE. Hormone treatments are not given to prepubertal children and in fact are not started until Tanner stage 2 of puberty. Sex change (gender reassignment) operations are not done on children. (Rare exception might be in the case of ambiguous genitalia where surgery may be done to make genital appearance more consistent with the genetic sex).

Unfortunately there are many people who cannot or will not understand that someone different from themselves might really be different for a real reason. I recently watched a video of a Fox News personality guffawing, in an arrogant and grotesque display of not knowing what one does not know, about how “woke liberals” were looking into the science of what makes someone a man or a woman. I hope the information provided here explains why that question is not quite as simple as it sounds.

It is also unfortunate in Texas that people with political power seem to think that trans people just want to get on the girls’ track team

to win a lot of medals or get in the girls’ rest room to watch them pee. Governor Abbott, Lt Gov Patrick, and AG Paxton have shown profound ignorance and cruelty in decreeing treatment for these kids to be child abuse. Even right wing columnist Mona Charen called Abbott’s behavior “malice masquerading as policy making”. They really no different than lunchroom bullies.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Medical Association, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Endocrine Society have expressed outrage that government is inserting itself into a matter that should be left to families, patients, and their doctors. There are well established evidence based procedures that have been in place for decades. This is not a new phenomenon and it is not a fad. Treatment saves lives. Denying treatment is cruel.

I would hope that someone will share this with a conservative friend. For most of us it seems ridiculous that a guy would think he is a woman, or a woman to think she is a man. The human brain and human body are complex and wondrous and get it “right” almost every time, but sometimes they get it different. And different should not be wrong, and different people and their families should not be attacked by their own government.”

– Joe McCreight, MD”


Or maybe four. One, why don’t they make sure food and products are safe BEFORE they are sold, instead of after, when the harm is done? See eyedrops. ‘Oh, we inspected the facilities and they are filthy.’ WHY did you not do that before they were allowed to be sold? I get emails about recalls, and you wonder why we even have food inspection services and the FDA? Do your job, people.

Two. I want to see the Orange Disgrace charged for inciting a government takeover, but maybe it’s like Al Capone. They got him for tax evasion if I remember my history, not for being the murdering gangster he was. Just get him. Keep him away from our government. Keep his cronies away. Do something besides wring your hands. Or is our democracy so weak that one person can wreak havoc? Yep, definitely seems so. Not just him, but several other Republicans seem to have more power than one would think possible based on what we were taught in school about how our government works. Or was that all just lies as well as so much we were taught to believe about our ‘greatest country in the world’. Yeah, that wasn’t true at all, was it? Propaganda. That’s what we got. Propaganda.

Next. The only new Kindle I want is a keyboard, like the original, where it is just a holder for the books I get, not whatever the heck it is now. I don’t want it. I don’t want a tablet, I don’t want a stylus, I don’t want pictures of books I could buy, I just want a new Kindle Keyboard, Amazon. One that works like the one I bought way back in 2014, which I still use every day, and have changed the battery once, but it is slowing, slowing, slowing down and is it possible to get it refurbished or something? I love that thing more than most things I’ve ever bought.

Okay, fourth thing. I am so over the awake all night, sleep off and on all day. It really gets in the way of being awake and alert enough to make necessary phone calls, paperwork, whatever. I cannot seem to get past this. I can only take Nyquil one day in a row, and the next night I am back to awake all night. Melatonin does nothing but make me depressed and weird, and still awake, and no prescribed pills I have ever taken have worked more than a week or so. Nothing I have ever tried has worked consistently. I am flummoxed. Neat word, that. I don’t know how people can just say ‘I’m going to take a nap’ or ‘I’m going to bed now’, and actually go to sleep. I sleep when my body says it’s time, and not a second before. I have no say in the matter. How does that even work?

Stay safe, people. There are more and more bad things coming along, from what I read on the Boston Globe, the New York Times, and all the newsletters I get. More viruses, more things to be wary of. Global warming means more funguses, more insects, more a lot of things that used to be farther south’s problems. We have messed with Mother Nature recklessly for way too long, in spite of what people who know what they are talking about have been telling us for decades, and now Mother Nature is exacting her revenge. Kind of seems like that, doesn’t it, but really, we have just messed up the entire ecosystem so badly that it cannot self-correct anymore We did this to ourselves, because Greed Is Good, and profit is the only thing that matters. I am so over people.

On the other hand, I have quite given up. No matter what, or how well I eat, I keep just getting worse, so I have gone over to self-indulgence, i.e. I bought Tasty Kakes, which actually are very, very tasty. Like Hostess cupcakes used to be, way back when. I also bought Marie Callender’s Razzle Dazzle pie, which was not nearly as tasty as everything I’ve read about it would seem to imply. Disappointed. Having Hood Pineapple Cottage Cheese right now. That really IS tasty. 🙂 Over and out.