Sunday, March 04, 2007

What a Weekend!

It's been a busy weekend, and I'm very tired now at the end of it. So much has happened in two days that I can't tell you about it all in depth tonight. But let me touch on the important bits:

1. The Episcopal Übergeek

Opening announcements at the ministry fair

Saturday morning I got up early, picked up Toni Sue and headed over St. Michael's for the two hour drive to the 2007 Ministry Fair at Grand Canyon State University in Phoenix, sponsored by the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona. Toni Sue and I rode up with Rev. Angela Emerson, an ex-lawyer and recently ordained priest, a fun and interesting person.

Father Smith gets an explanation from Dean Nicholas Knisely.

Once there I attended three workshops, on the Web, the Internet and Communications, respectively. The first two were presented by The Very Rev. W. Nicholas Knisely, Dean of Trinity Cathedral in Phoenix. He's kind of the computer übergeek for the whole Episcopal Church USA, an astrophysicist-turned-priest whose Internet experience goes all the way back to Arpanet. I found out how to solve my calendar updating issues, got leads on where to sign on to get the St. Michael's sermons done as proper podcasts, and where to get a domain name for the parish so it can stop piggybacking on I also came up with a good, memorable domain name, which I'll tell you about once it's nailed down. It was a good, fun, interesting day.

2. #5 Arrives.

This morning was the annual toy show at the Pima County Fairground. After much deliberation I came home with this #5 Ponytail Barbie. As the name implies, this was the fifth model of Barbie doll with a ponytail, the 1962 version of the original 1958 design. There are numerous small differences between the #5 and the #1, in coloration, in materials used, and in the fact that the #1 had holes in the feet to fit it into a stand. There's also a huge price difference. The #1 has sold for over $3,500. I got my #5 today for $125. Since I really only felt the need for a ponytail Barbie from my early childhood, not the earliest and rarest version of the doll, this worked out fine.

Before cleaning. Note dirty spot next to the eye

The doll is in very good condition over all. It had no "green ear" as my bubblecut has, no thinning or cut-off hair, no cracks at the neck, no lip rubs. It was a bit dirty, though, the hair was a bit of a mess, and the original black and while swimsuit was stained in a way that isn't fixable.

I started out cleaning the face with a cotton swab, but it didn't work well. I ended up using dribbles of water and a soft cloth, and brushed the hair with a tiny plastic doll brush. Here is the result.

I specifically remember having a black and while Barbie swimsuit, but I couldn't find it. So I put the doll in this vintage dress instead.

3. Sandy.

I heard from one of my former co-workers at Worldwide Travel today that Sandy Potter died in January after a very difficult year. When I first interviewed in 1993 to be the company's bookkeeper, it was Sandy who took me out to lunch. She co-owned the company with her husband Mal, my day-to-day boss. She was funny, a little sarcastic but loving and compassionate as well as intelligent, a mother of three, a former French teacher and flower arranger. Sandy's health started to fall apart about a decade ago, and she nearly died several times before this latest round of illnesses, conditions and complications. Sad as it is to lose her, I imagine Mal has been feeling much the way I did when my mom died, a mixture of grief and relief, knowing that he doesn't have to worry about her any more. Farewell, Sandy! I'll miss you.


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