The latest batch o’ spam includes a Jane Austen fan, apparently.

Keep your breath to cool your porridge.

Mordez-moi aussi, duckie.


Busy morning at the day job. Home during lunch to let out the pups, a little later than usual. Color me In A Hurry. Dump purse, keys, etc on kitchen table, grab towel, and go out on deck to wait for pups so’s I could wipe their muddy paws before they went inside. Close door after me, because that’s what you do. Wipe pup paws, then open door to go back inside. Try to open door. Try really, really hard.


You see, back door is problematic. It’s old, which means that all the trimsulation or whatever the hell you call it is old as well. Most of it is cracked or missing, so last year I inserted some lengths of narrow foam stripping to fill in gaps and keep out cold air etc. For some time, this insulation remained puffy enough to keep the door from closing completely–the deadlatch wouldn’t catch and the door would pop open. To keep the door closed, I either had to slam it really hard, or engage the deadbolt. The deadbolt is locked on the inside with a thumbturn and on the outside with a key. The second lock, on the door handle, was never really an issue because the door never shut properly. I usually left it engaged.

Now last summer, I accidentally slammed the door and did manage to lock myself out. But I cranked down on the door handle and pushed with my shoulder and the door opened because the insulation was still thick enough to keep the deadlatch from extending all the way.

The insulation has thinned since then. If the door is closed with force, like when one is rushing out onto the deck with a towel to wipe muddy pup paws, the deadlatch will extend all the way.


I must have spent a good 45 minutes trying to open that door. I cranked on the handle and pushed, cranked and pushed. Cranked and kicked. Kicked many many times. Hunted for anything on the deck or out on the yard that I could use as a pry. Wondered whether I should just give up and drive to the hardware store and call a locksmith. I did have my car keys, but drivers license was in wallet, which was in purse, which was safely secured inside the house, along with two sets of house keys and my phone.

I debated breaking the door glass (French door–lotta glass). Instead, I searched the deck again, and found a short pole behind the wood rack. I braced it against the door handle and levered it down, down, down, cranking the door handle more and more until the screw posts cracked. Pulled the knob apart, and got in the house.

Bought a new handle after work and installed it. It’s not perfect. The deadbolt is dull brass, but the local store didn’t have an entry door handle with the same finish. So I settled for worn bronze, which is black with coppery undertones. And since the handles curve, I need to reverse them at some point–they curve up, and they’re supposed to curve down, which means I need to pop them off the spindle and reverse them. Just don’t feel like dealing with that now. My right shoulder and arm are a little stiff from grappling with the door handle and pushing, and my right foot is a little stiff from kicking. Nothing serious, she said, fingers crossed. I’m just happy that the door closes.


Looks like I’m going to have to upgrade to Lion in the near future. MobileMe, the older Backup/iDisk/Mail/calendar service, is going away, to be replaced by iCloud, which requires Lion to run. I haven’t heard great things about Lion, so I will wait as long as I can. But sometime in the next few months, I will have to give up Snow Leopard and move on.

I saw that Mountain Lion will be coming out this summer, which is another hint that Lion wasn’t all that great. Poor kitty. He deserved better.