On The Catwalk

She slowly sashays down the catwalk
The confident spring in her steps
Meant to look spontaneous
Though clearly well rehearsed
Impossible not to appreciate
The fantastic body
Barely hidden
Beneath the silky sheer fabrics
That swish and sway around her.


Written for these daily prompts: The Daily Spur (spring), Word of the Day Challenge (spontaneous), Your Daily Word Prompt (fantastic), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (body), and Ragtag Daily Prompt (swish). Photo credit: Mirela Mitric at Pinterest.

The Monday Peeve — Technology

Every Monday, Paula Light, with her The Monday Peeve post, gives us an opportunity to vent or rant about something that pisses us off. Today my peeve is directed at technology that doesn’t work as it is supposed to.

From my perspective, when it comes to technology, 2020 has not been a good year, which is not at all surprising, since 2020 has been a particularly shitty year in most respects.

From a technology standpoint, WordPress launched its block editor and decommissioned its classic editor. It also released a buggy version 16 update to the iOS app for the iPhone, which won’t allow me to like or comment on a number of blog posts from the Reader. And other software apps have released upgrades that are anything but improvements over earlier versions.

The latest example of technological frustration for me has been going on for the past week. You may recall that at the end of last December I had surgery to remove a middle ear growth in my left ear. The surgery successfully removed the growth, but not before it destroyed a tiny bone in my middle ear that connects the ear drum to the inner ear. Without that tiny bone, sound waves that vibrate the ear drum don’t reach the inner ear, which means that sounds don’t reach the brain. As I result, I am deaf in my left ear.

This has created a problem between me and my wife. In order to hear the dialogue while we’re watching TV together, I have to turn the volume up. But my wife complains that it’s way too loud. We’ve tried close captions, but my wife finds them annoying and distracting. And I find that reading the text distracts from seeing what’s happening on screen. Further, closed captions don’t work very well for live TV, like cable news.

My wife suggested I get a device that would permit me to hear the audio through headphones while enabling her to hear the audio through our surround sound speakers.

I did some research and ended up buying this wireless headphones/transmitter set, which claims to work with virtually any TV, audio receiver, and cable box configuration.Well, maybe except mine. I admit that my configuration is complicated. I’ve got a wall-mounted hi-def TV that is connected via an HDMI cable in the wall to my stereo audio receiver, which then connects to my cable box.

Either/or

I followed all of the detailed instructions that came with the device and everything seemed to be set up correctly. But I could either hear the audio through the headphones or via the speakers, but not through both at the same time.

I’ve had four calls with the tech support team from the makers of the wireless transmitter, but so far they have been unable to get the headphones and speakers to work simultaneously. This morning, after yet another hour on the phone, I was asked to send them pictures of the back of my TV, the connections on my audio receiver and those of my cable box. I was also asked to send photos of how my sound was configured on my TV’s settings.

I’ll give them one more chance to figure out how to get this technology to work as advertised. If not, I’ll send it back and hope my wife and I can figure out how to watch TV together so that I can hear and she doesn’t feel like she being blasted out of the room. Either that or one of us will be sent to our room to watch TV.

Share Your World — Winter Wonderland

Share Your WorldFor this week’s edition of Share Your World from Melanie at Sparks From a Combustible Mind, we are asked the following questions.

Do you enjoy skiing or ice skating or, if it’s warm where you are, hiking or enjoying outdoor sports?

Back in my prime, I used to really enjoy downhill skiing and did it nearly every winter. I was never very good at ice skating but I was a decent roller skater. I also used to be into hiking. But now, as I’ve reached my so-called “golden years,” I no longer ski and my hiking is generally limited to long walks around the neighborhood.

Do you give to charities, or to homeless that you might encounter, during this time of year, more than you do otherwise?

I have a few selected charities that I give to each year, but it’s not necessarily tied to this time of the year. As to the homeless, I used to give them some money when I lived in the “big city,” but now that I live in the burbs, I rarely come across homeless people. Of course, the fact that we’re still under stay-at-home orders would make it tough, even were we still living in the “big city,” to give to the homeless this year.

What is the most enjoyable activity you engage in during December? Is it a tradition for you and your family?

In the past we have typically had holiday family gatherings, which are always fun. We would get together for Chanukah, for Christmas (yes, we are a mixed family of Christians, Jews, and atheists), and we would have “game night” for New Year’s Eve. Unfortunately, none of that will be happening this year.

What changes will C-19 bring to your festive celebrations this year?

As I noted above, none of our traditional family holiday gatherings, as discussed above, will be happening this year due to COVID-19.

Please share a good will wish for the world!

I wish for all of you to wear your face masks, maintain social distancing, and stay safe for the remainder of this year and for all of 2021. Happy Holidays, whatever holidays you’re celebrating.

Blogging Insights — Friends and Family

Blogging insightsFor this week’s Blogging Insights edition, Dr. Tanya wants to know what our family and friends think of our blogs. She wants to know…

How supportive are your family (or friends) of your blog?

After I retired at the end of 2016, my wife, as a way to keep me occupied and out of her hair, encouraged me to start a new blog. Once I started it and became, well, distracted by it, she’s shown little interest in it. She and my kids just consider my blog to be the random rantings and writings of an aging hippie, as do, apparently, most of my real world friends.

Do they do anything to help with your blogging efforts?

Nope. It’s my baby and I’m pretty much all on my own.

Do they read your work and offer a critique, if so, how do you react to it?

I can’t say for sure whether or not they read my blog. None of them has ever left a comment nor have they ever discussed any of my specific posts with me. But that’s fine with me. Blogging is my online, social media thing and tweeting, Instagramming, and Facebooking are their online, social media things.

Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #95

Welcome to “Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge.” Each week I will be posting a photo I grab off the internet and challenging bloggers to write a flash fiction piece or a poem inspired by the photo. There are no style or word limits.

The image below is from Forgottenx at DeviantArt.For the visually challenged writer, the photo shows the shadow of a person who on the other side of a translucent curtain and is cutting through the curtain with a pair of scissors.

If this week’s image inspires you and you wish to participate, please write your post, use the tag #FFFC, and link back to this post. I hope it will generate some great posts.

Thanks to all of you who have participated in these challenges. Your posts have been very creative. Please take a few minutes to read the other responses to this photo challenge.

Please create a pingback to this post or manually add your link in the comments.