Today in My History

2000:  Martha Doesn't Live Here
2001:  Where Have All the Flowers Gone
2002:  Peace on Earth Good Will Toward Men
2003:  An Old Waddle Family
2004:  A Charlie Brown Christmas
2005:  We. Are. Fam-i-ly

2006 On Being an Idiot
2007: The Tradition of Service
2008:  One Week
2009:  Fore!
2010:  Santa Read My Letter
2011:  Party Animals
2012: The Wave
2013:  The Dreaded Christmas Letter
Life Without Electricity
2015  Who She Was
2016: Easy Queasy

2017 Christmas Letter

Bitter Hack
Updated 12/2
"The 'Santa Rhumba' Saved His Life" (feature story)

Books Read in 2017
 Updated 11/18
"Magic Flute"

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Books Read in 2017
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Books Read in 2013

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updated 7/16

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12 December 2017

I am once again doing battle with scurvy.

At least that's what I tell myself every December, when our annual citrus order from a local musical group arrives.

I don't know how many years we have been buying citrus, but the kids were still living at home when we started.  In those days I ordered two boxes of oranges and one box of grapefruit.

I kept ordering when the kids moved out, reducing to one box of oranges.  I just loved the grapefruit and the oranges were sweeter than anything I could predictably get locally.

Then I got older and the doctor started recommending medication to prevent cardiac problems.  Walt and I both went on a statin, and grapefruit is a no-no when you take statins because it can affect the rate at which your drugs are processed by the liver, and possibly cause a toxic reaction.  I have been sad about that for a long time because I love grapefruit, but haven't had it in years.

But I still look forward to my annual box of oranges and they arrived yesterday!

I eat a lot of oranges during the day.  I love to cut them into 6ths and then eat them, as above.  It's easier to pour orange juice, but I love sucking on orange segments.

When the kids were home, I had a juice squeezer and someone (for a few years, our Malaysian student, Vince) would spend the morning squeezing oranges to fill up a pitcher, which we then had for Christmas morning breakfast.

Sometimes I still make orange juice, but mostly I just suck the juice out of the segments. and I love it.

December is also the month when my teeth get better flossed than any other time of the year, to get rid of the pulp from sucking on the oranges.

This is the Thomas fire, 24 hours ago.  It is one of several fires which stretch from southern Santa Barbara to Mexico (around 250 miles) and with help from the infamous Santa Ana Winds and the rugged terrain, firefighters are having a difficult time containing it.  The LA Times reported they are predicting a fire-fighting Christmas and they could still be fighting this fire in spots three months from now.

The bulk of the damage so far is in the town of Ventura which has seen 524 structures destroyed and 135 damaged.  I was quite concerned about my friend Lynn, who lives in Ventura because she was not answering my messages about her safety, but she finally did respond to a text message and says she is OK, but nothing else about her or about her family, who also live in Ventura..

Things became more personal for us when we heard that there were going to be evacuations in Montecito, which is in the southern, more exclusive part of Santa Barbara.  It's where Oprah lives, for example. 

Montecito is a ways from where Tom and his family live, but the way this fire is moving, it is not inconceivable that eventually it might affect them as well.  I heard from Laurel that they have sent the girls to stay with her mother in Nipomo, 70 miles north and well out of harm's way to avoid the smoke in the air (schools are closed).  We just watch and wait.  And worry.

Hey!  I have a disease.  I learned from the NY Daily News that so many Americans are suffering from political anxiety that doctors have coined a term for their distress — Trump Anxiety Disorder.

Patients are turning up in therapists' offices across the country reporting symptoms including insomnia, hypervigilance, and the inability to pull themselves away from the 24-hour news cycle.

People, like me, who are in the grip of Trump Anxiety Disorder, become obsessed with the news. The constant bombardment of bad news worsens our anxiety, yet we can't stay away from the news for fear we may miss something. We feel that if we know what is going on we are in control somehow.

I am remembering back to Watergate and my father's obsession with the hearings.  He watched constantly and compiled scrapbooks filled with any article he could find.

I guess the fruit doesn't fall far from the tree after all.

I alerted my therapist, whom I have not seen in a long time of this disorder and she wrote, "The Trump Anxiety Disorder has not yet made it to the DSM, but I'm sure it will soon."  Once again, I am a trend setter.


California state capitol


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