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The Teapot Quilt

29 November 2023

It’s quite a feat, an actual coup — taking the Laptop in for repair-service during Cyber Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday/EveryDay. It was Dear Husband’s idea. Since I don’t shop-by-phone, the decision was a clever way to remove a purchasing device from my nimble fingers.


Just kidding!


Actually, the Laptop has been suffering Low-Battery for almost two weeks. The ominous signs started to appear slowly, as they sometimes do with a terminal case. Whilst I was inputting text of Chaptire 3 of L’AUBE into a document, the screen went BLACK. The power had indicated 70%, so I found the situation very odd.


There were two more 70% energy-blackouts, laptop-screen ones, not PG&E-induced irritations, although there was, indeed, 1 Planned Outage of 4 hours that overlapped the Darkness of the Computer Screen. I thence deduced that the battery was dreadfully showing its age.


My MacBook Pro of many years ago is in the Fix-it Shop, awaiting a New Battery. My model hearkens back to Steve-Jobs-Apple-World, and is not a piece of cr— from the Tim-Cook-Chinesium-Universe. Mr. Fix-It looked quite lovingly and yearningly at my antique device, verbally noting the quality of the keyboard. He agreed that recent models have tacky touch-screens, not keyboards.


Hold fast to the things of quality is my motto!


I’ve had three days of blissful independence from that device. It was only this morning that I decided to borrow Laptop from Hubby to compose this essay.


What did I do during those days of autonomy?


Dusting, decorating, ironing, cooking, laundry, yoga. Assisting the Personal Trainer of Jolene the Jumping Beagle Queen. (No, she does not have a Fit-bit, just a master to take her outdoors!)


And, then . . . I’ve been happily stitching in time with artistic thoughts in my own mind.


I’d been searching for un-divided time to handstich/appliqué the teapots for my teapot quilt, a project that I started this past summer. Five or six hours were all that were needed!


Now I can cut out the fabrics strips for piecing the teapot squares all together with machine-stitching. I’ll add a border, sandwich the top with the batting and backing . . . and voilà:


The Teapot Quilt.


(All ready for hand-quilting during those dark hours of the Winter Solstice.)


My three-day vacation from online world proved so productive that I decided to extend the respite to a full week. My timing coincides with the timing of Laptop Shop. The New Battery has been located, on the East Coast. It’ll take 3-4 days of transit to northern northern California, and then the installation.


I’ll have plenty of time to devote to closing in on the second half of my David Austin Roses book. And to further finesse uses for the me-Phone that have gone completely ignored by its owner.


This morning, I learned how to delete e-mails from that Communication Device, something I’d not realized could be done. I’m so auditory that I’d thought the Message Box was the Mail Box!


By the time that I opened the letter-chute, the many many missives that spilled out at me were out-of-date. I’m wondering if my efficiency model ought to include a Once-A-Week e-mail check, after breakfast.


Benevolently granting yourself adequate time to figure out how best to deal with time, it’s a definite pre-requisite to using your time wisely. I guess every person has his or her own method, but, for me, downtime due to Computer Non-Function has proven to be a real up-time, and upswing in the energy department. My aura has thrived!

I do, however, need a nap this afternoon to rest from all of the creative productivity.


The song, Tea for Two, ran playfully through my mind during my hand-stitching of a few of these teapots. Composed by Vincent Youmans, with lyrics by Irving Caesar, this ditty had its debut in May 1924, in Chicago, during the pre-Broadway run of the musical No, No, Nanette,


The melody is simple and charming, albeit rhythmically repetitive. The lyrics, in the here-and-now, might cause a riot amongst those covertly violent and overtly glum peaceniks, a hissy fit amidst the oh-so-tolerant and grim Techie-Addicts, and a complete meltdown for those Anti-Social-Personalities that populate Wokedom and PC World (political correctness and personal computing).


I recall, back before Mac went morbid, the digital geeks were paranoid privacy-freaks, not virtue-signaling voyeurs of your monetized and incentivized intimacies. The current malaise is fueled (oops, loaded-term), driven (nope, try again), energized?? by spoiled-brat idiots with too much money.


It’s a generational problem, but I somehow haven’t gotten used to the loud, lewd attention-whore loonies. I doubt I ever will.


I am, thus, very much in tune with these musical strains from 100 years ago. And I’m harmonically in-sync with the meaning of each and every word.


Tea for Two

Oh, honey

Picture me upon your knee

With tea for two and two for tea

Just me for you and you for me alone


Nobody near us to see us or hear us

No friends or relations or weekend vacation

We won’t have it known, dear

That we own a telephone, dear.


Day will break and I’m gonna wake

And start to bake a sugar cake

For you to take, for all the boys to see


Oh, Darling!


We will raise a family

A boy for you and a girl for me

Can’ t you see how happy we will be?



Yes, that dream from yesteryear I can see — all the way to the reality of today!




9 December 2023 Update

Tea is Served


I suppose I’ll always associate the final realization of this quilt with the 10 days of freedom from my laptop-in-the-Repair Shop.  And with borrowing the laptop of Dear Husband.  He stated that the device was “shared”, but, in reality, it was borrowed for brief periods of time.

 

I learned the necessity of digital etiquette, which is but a mere extension of traditional etiquette, a set series of kindnesses completely obliterated by computer freaks and geeks.  The Axis of Wokedom, the airplane arc from Boston to NYC to Washington, D.C., is the latest cloddish exponent and proponent of such vulgarity toward humanity.


With the proper sense of dignity, I resisted opening any files scattered across the wallpaper screen of my spousal unit.  I did, however, click open a few images, out of pure curiosity:

 

A screenshot or two of electronic components, an adorable photo of the always adorable Chance during his adorable puppyhood, and a folder of an essay of mine, posted weeks ago.

 

Dutifully, I informed Dear Husband of my peeking into a few among his scattered array of images on his laptop.  He explained that the electronic components were of Bronco innards, and the posted essay would become another gem stored for posterity in the electronic memory vault that my Wonderful Webmaster keeps of my website materials and writing.  As for me, once an essay’s been written, I more than tend to forget I’ve written it!


I regularly swap out the inspirational-themed wallpaper on my laptop screen, and I aggregate the files, according to activity, and subject and category of interest.  The cyberspace screen of engineer-husband looks like a spray-gun sorta made use of a sort-function.  I nonetheless complimented my spouse on what appears to be some form of organization in his shotgun approach to keeping data files on his screen:

 

“I’m sure that there’s some kind of arrangement, a logical order, to the grouping of 10 or 12 images or files, here and there, and everywhere, on the screen.  And there must be even more classification within what appears to be a random tossing-up of jpegs onto your laptop.  I wasn’t aware of how many kettles you have in the fire.”


“Irons in the fire,” came the correction to yet another mangling of an idiom, a linguistic activity in which I specialize (and excel).


The Teapot Quilt also prompted my double-checking a high-school U.S. history lesson, the Teapot Dome Scandal.  Dating back to the 1921-1923 administration of Warren Gamaliel Harding, who was a doozie from the Republican Party of Ohio, Teapot Dome involved those always pesky petroleum reserves way out West, this time in Wyoming, along with two areas in California.

 

The Department of the Interior deals with the exterior of the States beyond that Axis of Wokedom, and the Mecca of Bribery, the Playground of Playola, aka, The Swamp, or D.C.  The Secretary of the Interior at the time was Albert Bacon Fall, and, yes, he got the bacon, and he had a big fall.


Mr. Fall benefitted bigly from leasing U.S. Navy petroleum reserves — at Teapot Dome, Wyoming and those as-yet undisclosed California locations (to be named later, much much later)— to private oil companies (also of unknown, or hard-to-discover, identity) at low rates (low being a comparative term) without competitive bidding.

 

Now the bidding for government contracts is something with which I’ve a passing knowledge, having worked several months for Peat, Marwick, Mitchell in Washington, D.C.  I conscientiously sorted through and selected the most appetizing (IFB’s) Invitations-for-Bids for myriad accountants on-staff. When I realized that the assistant to the assistant VP in charge of Whatever was grooming me to take over her job, I sped a hasty departure.

 

A hasty departure from the Interior is what became of Mr. Fall who accepted an unknown number of bribes, for an unknown amount of money.  He was the first cabinet member of a sitting president to go to prison, but, oddly enough, no one was convicted of paying the bribes for which Mr. Fall took the fall.

 

If you study accurate U.S. history, you can see current events flashing before your very eyes!

 

The Harding scandals did not surface in the public domain until after the lady’s man (not girly-man), President Warren G. Harding, died, suddenly, and most unexpectedly, out-of-the-blue, of a heart attack in San Francisco while on a western “tour”, thereby causing untold grief to the female voters in America.  The womanizing dead Prez Warren was succeeded by his Veep, the always efficient, boring, and ethical Calvin Coolidge.

 

Here in the U.S.A., Cool Cal is looking cooler every day.  I hear he was a tea-totaler too!

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