Little Ms. Polymath

aka the know-it-all

thorazine. October 11, 2010

Filed under: this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 3:47 pm
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Finally! A cure for agitated seniors! Thorazine, you had me at hello. (FYI – today Thorazine is used to treat schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders – and unfortunately, not old age.)


indian summer. October 7, 2010

Filed under: this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 11:48 am

My new hobby is swimming. I never, in a million years, thought I’d write that sentence. There’s something so lovely about moving weightless through the water. While I’m not a fan of showing off in a bathing suit, since I swim at 5:45 am, most of my fellow swimmers are elderly so I like to think a combination of manners, indifference and cataracts means no one is paying much attention.

I love autumn, and I love the weather lately. It’s a blessing to get an Indian summer. As I was walking home from a luncheon yesterday I couldn’t help but swoon a bit over the vista – changing leaves framing a gorgeous blue lake. I felt really lucky not to be stuck in a cube.

I’m coming up on a birthday soon – not a milestone, but a birthday nonetheless. Since I am a consummate measurer and note taker, I often take stock of where I am and where I want to be and progress and feelings and all of that crap. And this birthday, for the first time in a long time, I’m really happy with how I spent my year. I’ve tried new things, gotten out of my comfort zone, maybe grown up a bit in a few areas, and escaped from corporate oppression. I feel free. Sure, there are a lot of things that still need to change, and I’m not done growing up yet. But man, I am in such a better mood than I was last year at this time. I can’t say enough good things about controlling your own destiny. It’s everything it’s cracked up to be and more.

Same goes for you.


range life. September 15, 2010

Filed under: life,this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 6:45 pm
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This past Sunday, Annette and I hit the road at 6:30 am and arrived in the Ikea Twin Cities parking lot at 11:15. After meatballs and mashed potatoes we conquered the Swedish discount mart and scored some fantastic bargains. Annette picked up a darling desk chair and I found an area rug for $15. Sweet, sweet victory!

Then it was on to the Mall of America for some serious Sephora time, a relaxing cocktail and a few other stops. Oh, and don’t worry – I finally got my hands on some Lacoste hand towels.

Then it was time for the main event: the Pavement reunion show. Fortunately our hotel was right across the street from (the legendary) Roy Wilkins auditorium. The concert was amazing–it was as if I was transported back to 1997. Everyone was doing the knee-jerk dance and trying their hardest not to show the bliss on their faces, but I could still feel the joy in the room. I know I was glowing. It was great to hear so many of my life’s signature songs live again….between the liquor and the music I felt like I was 23. Sadly, the next day’s headache proved that is no longer the case. 

We were up and at ’em early in the morning, and on the road by 9:00 am. We had less than 24 hours in the Twin Cities, but I loved every minute of it.

PS: if you are ever hung over and driving through Osage, Iowa stop at R&Bs for a chocolate malt. You’re welcome.

PPS: our 10+ hours in the car resulted in some pretty creative moments. Annette proved she should be writing songs for a living, and I came up with a jingle for her family’s business: when God breaks a window/we open our doors/Knebel windows. Imagine it sung in a shrill falsetto, coming out of your radio on an early Sunday morning and you’ll get the idea.

Pavement's Bob Nastanovich and I reminisced about bowling in Omaha and my other adventures with the band. Also pictured is his sweet wife Whitney.

Annette and I, mature and demure per usual.


eye candy. August 12, 2010

Filed under: this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 3:07 pm

You know, it’s summer and in the sizzling heat sometimes it’s nice to sit back and look at some of the beauty the world has to offer. And while I’m not single, I still like to look – if you know what I mean *wink*.  Here are a few treats for you on this sweaty Thursday.

Why aren't these guys in my social circle? WHY???

It's true girls, someday your prince will come. Out of the closet.

This is pretty close to the hair color I had when we were in New Orleans. However, if I had a puppy I wouldn't push her around in a stroller. I'd use a Snugli.

Absolute bliss.


follow through. August 4, 2010

Filed under: this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 12:35 pm
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The inspiration for today’s post is 100 percent, ahem, borrowed from Ms. Danielle LaPorte. ‘Cause finding her latest update in my email box this morning sort of shook me up. It’s funny how something so simple and so obvious can remind you of what you’re supposed to be doing. 

She writes: 

What’s the secret to success?


  • What’s the single most important thing you’ve learned on your journey?
  • What’s your key piece of advice for meaningful livelihood?
  • What’s the greatest cause of failure? How do we overcome fear
  • What’s your pearl of wisdom for getting unstuck?

Yeah, the answer is going to blow your mind: 

Do what you say you’re going to do. 

I’ve made a huge amount of personal progress in the last few months – my life is finally getting on track – at least the track I want it to be on. But I struggle and procrastinate, and I let myself off the hook – A LOT. 

Part of what struck me about Danielle’s statement is the idea of simply making myself more accountable. Another facet to doing what I say I’m going to do is committing myself to more reasonable actions. Because there are still days when I wake up and think I’m going to break every land speed record known to man, then knit a blanket, help a lady have a baby in the back of a cab (using said blanket – always thinking ahead!!), prepare a gourmet meal, write a novel and figure out how to time travel. And when that’s my average to-do list, I sort of freeze up and get very little done. Then I feel guilty and add more to the following day’s list. And so on. 

So I need attainable goals (within my own well-worn boundaries) and I need to stick to them. Know my limits, and work within them. Maybe after I stretch a bit I’ll be able to run a greater distance. Right now I need to concentrate on the short journey. 

My new plan is to make small, manageable goals that I can actually achieve. I will work on pushing my limits and stepping out of my comfort zone a little bit down the road. For right now one sentence is all I need to keep my focus: Do what you say you’re going to do.

So, yeah, sorry taxi-cab baby, you’re going to have to find somebody else to deliver you today. You’re off the list. 

Aren't these bunnies cute? Now go have a good day. And follow through!


farmer nicky. August 3, 2010

Filed under: this week I really love....,unemployment diary — mspolymath @ 11:36 am

I suppose I had a lot of ideas about what working on an organic farm would entail. I knew it would be hard work, but I guess I wasn’t quite so prepared – life on Primrose Farm, at least for me, is nothing like the lives of the Fabulous Beekman Boys.

Let me backtrack. I’ve always talked a lot about becoming the person I’ve always wanted to be. Now that I’m no longer beholden to “the man,” this year has been a good opportunity to explore my interests and work on some life goals. And while pretty much anyone who has ever met me would most likely be baffled by this, when I close my eyes and pictured the ideal me, I’ve often imagined myself as someone who plants and gardens and has her hands in the earth. So I started looking around for farms where I could get my feet dirty, so to speak. I had good timing, because Primrose had a rare CSA volunteer spot open up, and it was mine for the taking.

An artist's rendering of me after my farm shift.

I spent yesterday afternoon harvesting potatoes. For about three hours. Thank God it was overcast and a breezy 85 degrees. Because there were moments I thought I was going to barf. I definitely got light-headed. And so dirty. I’m talking DIRTY, people – Ol’ DB dirty. I had sweat/dirt paste in the crooks of my elbows. Even with pants on, the dirt got through and made it look as if my thighs were covered in freckles. And my face! How does one get so much dirt on one’s face in such a short amount of time? Today I’m still blowing dirt out of my nose – it’s as if I’ve spent the entire day riding the London Tube. Or working on a farm, I guess.

So, yeah. I picked potatoes. Personally, I had my hands on hundreds and hundreds of russets and Yukons. Then we weeded sweet potatoes, then helped harvest the yellow onion crop. Personally I was working on harvesting dirt, filling my shoes and socks up so I could sneak as much home as possible. I have to admit, it was a good haul.

The payoff was in the produce – the farm gives us a giant share and it’s wonderful. Watermelon, honeydew, sun golds, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant, fennel, basil, squash, cukes, peppers….it’s wonderful. And it’s all organic.

And today, I don’t feel so badly. My back hurts a bit, but it’s nothing some stretching won’t fix. There’s the aforementioned dirt snot to contend with, but I think I’ll be fine.

Overall, what I feel is something I haven’t had in a long time. A connection to the earth and to the food I eat. I feel 100% amazing about how I spent my afternoon yesterday. I’m in this for the long haul – I committed to the rest of the season, which runs through October. I’ve heard it will only get worse – there will be rain, mud, and baking-hot days. Honestly, I’m excited. It’s never felt so good to get this dirty.


seven years. July 28, 2010

Filed under: celebrate,this week I really love.... — mspolymath @ 12:36 pm

Seven years seems like such a long time, yet of course it’s nothing in the grand scheme of things. And it’s gone so fast. We’ve been through so much together – I don’t think there’s really anything left to test us.

We’re solid. We’re not perfect. We still make each other laugh. We make each other crazy, too – because we’re not perfect. We know exactly how to push each other’s buttons. But you’re always there when I need you, and you know how to make me feel safe when no one else in the world can. You help keep me in check, listen to my outlandish ideas and love me anyway.

Here's to seven more years. No, your little friend can't come along.