1. Like my new Blogad? It's for an ant farm. See the holly sprigs? That's to let you know an ant farm -- especially a high-tone, woodworked ant farm -- makes a great holiday gift. Why was my blog chosen as a place to advertise an ant farm? I've been wondering about that all day!
2. Remember the movie "Antz"? It was a computer animated thing that came out the same year "A Bug's Life" came out, back in the early days of computer animation when it was too hard to do hair so they made up stories about plastic toys and then bugs? I walked out of "Antz." I just hated it. It gave me a headache to see the big ant face closeups. I was glad when the NYT was mean to "Polar Express" yesterday, because I find computer animation repellent. Not out of principle -- I feel a purely physical repulsion.
3. The other day I noticed key parts of my house were rotting and I called in some highly recommended carpenters to figure out what to do about everything, which turned out to be to yank out and replace a lot of wood. My approach to house repairs is: hire someone trustworthy and then trust them to do things right -- I feel the same way about car repairs -- but (maybe it's a Madison thing) these good people usually want to explain to me exactly what they are doing and why. The other day, the head carpenter described the hundreds of ants that he'd had to scoop out along with the rotted wood. "That's pretty gross," I said and apologized for putting him in the position where he had to deal with ants. "That's okay," he said, "it's my job." Which kind of surprised me. I would have thought dealing with insects was a specialized job that would require calling in an exterminator, but apparently it goes along with being a carpenter. Well, they were, in fact, carpenter ants.
4. Hey, remember this game?