Wednesday, July 30, 2008

deep talk

conversation about the new look for fMh:

me: are you still willing to redesign the site?
mainly a new masthead and change of color. the pepto pink is old.

MR. mfranti :
can i go with all grays?

me: sure, why not? put a little pink pin stripe in there for nostalgia.

MRmf: 'cuz nothing says feminism like all gray.

MRmf: do i get a girly fMh pink shirt as payment?

me: sure, if you want one but that's the old style, gray will be the new pink.

MRmf: it's the gender-less new wave-everybody can be special because nobody's different.

or is it that when everybody's special, then special no longer exists, so everybody's now normal

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


so. for as much complaining as i do about the dark circles under my eyes or the size of that crater parked on my cheek, or that snaggle tooth that always seems to peek out from under my top lip when i'm not paying attention, i've decided that i prefer the real me over the enhanced me.

I don't know why that is but when i saw the enhanced me that did away all those "flaws", i felt like it did away mfranti. silly huh?

thanks G for making me look oh so priddy.


fyi: this picture was taken at The Cure concert, april 08.
i started listening to The Cure sometime in the mid 80's and I still have all of their tapes. (yes, i said tapes)

...and you should be damn impressed that i got mr.mfranti to come along. he's more of a megadeth/pantera/metallica kind of guy.

house keeping tip # 4

(h/t quimby)

use a basket.

folks. me and mr. mfranti are notorious surface abusers. you'll not find another couple in the state who can take a flat surface and fill it with crap faster that we can. no surface is sacred.

now, we can all clear of the clutter in seconds and make the counters, kitchen table, desk look good but it usually requires another pile, somewhere typically out of site of visitors. so even though the kitchen, for example, looks neat and tidy, it usually means the basement looks like a super fund site.

first step in conquering clutter is to make sure everything has a home. this should be easy because if an item is important/useful/necessary, it will automatically have a home.

now to the basket. buy yourself, or reuse, a medium sized basket. not too big or else it becomes overwhelming and heavy and not too small or it's ineffective.

go into a room, say your front room, and fill up the basket. don't leave until the basket is full. now put stuff away starting with the room closest to your location. make sure that you put the item in its home. no exceptions. if you can't find a home for it, leave it in the basket and move on to the next room ending in the back of the house or on another floor. continue until the basket is empty or until you only have "homeless" items left over.

if you've done this correctly, you should be at the other end of the house or top or bottom floor. throw out the homeless items. you've walked through almost every room in your house, and didn't find a home for them so they are probably not important.

feels good doesn't it? it was easy, efficient and it didn't take much time.

what? why didn't you think of that years ago?

i don't know.

still feeling good? great. go fill up the basket again and repeat the process moving to the other end of the house.

be smart. do this daily and you will feel empowered by how much control you can maintain over the clutter.

Monday, July 28, 2008

bigest. deficit. ever.

i'm starting to wonder why the anyone would want to move into this fixer upper.

what a mess! and i don't think my house keeping tips will help.

house keeping tip # 3

if the outside temperature has been in the high 90's and you live in an old house without central air, make sure you check your bread thoroughly. i might even suggest storing it in the refrigerator.

there's nothing fun about the last bite of your peanut butter toast having a hint of summer's mold on it to ruin an afternoon snack.

house keeping tip # 2

if you have a 60 year old tub...clean it regularly.

folks, i can't stress this one enough. mr mfranti and i are active people. that's a fancy way to say we get really dirty. especially our feet. all that good dirt and grime that accumulates after 10 hours in chaco sandals gets transferred to our overly porous tub where it sits shower after shower, layer upon layer, month after month.

to conquer this, i spent an inordinate amount of time with dish soap, laundry detergent, baking soda and some super fine steel wool scrubbing until my back couldn't bend over anymore.

to avoid this problem, keep a scrubby dude in your shower. during your regular bathing routine, like when you are lathering up or conditioning, use your foot to scrub off the dirt. do this regularly and you wont have to suffer the way i did.

also, keep a squeegee in your shower to wipe off the water after your shower. trust me, you will save yourself a lot of grief if you do this daily.

house keeping tip #1

do not swap out your down comforter's duvet cover at 1:00 a.m.

it's best to leave such frustrating tasks for the early morning, before you've spend your day toiling away in the hundred degree weather. before the unnecessary trips to crowded stores because you have to get the proper storage container and before you've scrubbed your 60 year old tub.

Friday, July 25, 2008

on laziness...

every once in a while i think i'm going to publish something of value on this blog and then i realize that it requires way too much brain effort.

what can i say that hasn't already been said? exactly! so why bother, i am, after all, mediocre.

so on that note. i'm sitting here getting all sorts of philosophical with some friends* about life and politics and social issues and i realize, i'm so lazy that i don't like to be bothered by connecting enough words together to form a coherent sentence, and that's why i make friends with really smart people.

they can write about all the important crap i'm way too lazy to put into text and i can sit back and enjoy, and often marvel, at their fine work.

phew!!!! glad i got that out of the way.

*chandelle, g, lessie

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Mr. Woo 3/11/08-7/23/08

Mr. Woo, 4 months , died suddenly July 23, 2008, in a tragic urban farm accident.

He is survived by his five biddies, Violet, Ruby, Blanche, Dorothy and Sophia.
He is currently resting peacefully on the worktable out back awaiting de-feathering services.

Please join us for chicken enchiladas at the Franti residence 7/24/08 at 6:00pm.

Monday, July 21, 2008


so exciting! so exciting!

i've waited a long time for one of these so you can imagine my surprise when i saw this little dude sitting in the chook's doghouse sunday after church.

the first eggs are really small. see it next to a regular egg.

(please go easy on my photo skills-i'm not the artist in the family)

when i get around to cooking it, i will take a picture of it's lovely yolk.

in other chicken news...

i attempted to segregate mr. woo from the hens yesterday and possibley wring his neck. and damn, if he didn't piss me off enough to do so. he's always the last to go in the dog house and always the first to run out. this time he got out and into my corn.

i was mad. frustrated beyond all reason (you try catching an aggressive rooster). i could grabbed a rock and stoned him to death that's how frustrated i was. by the time i wore him out, or scared him into submission, i couldn't do anything. there he was, cowering under some branches, squawking out of fear and i couldn't do anything except grab him by his feet and take him to the other cage.

i think it was his warm body that had me thinking i couldn't take the life of this critter.


i will try again later.


for some reason julie rose inspires me. i copy her all the time. cookies, clothes, fancy tea- doesn't matter to me, i trust her judgment.

so when i saw the beautiful quiche on her blog, i had to make one of my own. not bad for my first time. and oh so yummy!

thanks darlin'. miss you.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

It's All Your Fault, Bodie

i've decided that i'm going to blame the dog for the gas prices, the housing problems, inflation, terrorism, my big toe.

if i've learned anything from the current occupant and this administration (or any government official), I can blame anyone for anything and it doesn't even have to make sense. i don't have to have an opinion based on anything logical. in fact, i can even deny any thing is wrong in the first place and then i don't even have to blame bodie.

but it's still bodies fault.

and here's the best part-he doesn't complain. he just sits at my side with with big eyes and a pink tongue hanging out of his mouth.

doin' a heckuva job bodie!

Monday, July 14, 2008

"Excuse me, I believe you have my stapler... "

I do my best to not be negative on this blog. I try not to complain about petty little things. I try to see the good in everything.

But I've had it. I can't take it anymore. There is no good to come of this.

Last August, When I got the promotion, I should have taken Mr. Bossman up on the new office.

But no....I wanted to stay up front, where I could do both jobs. Am I sick? Would appear so.

Actually, I'm a control freak. I didn't want some cute little ditz to come in and fill "my"position and then have to hear about how shitty she is from the guys. So I stayed up front where I can continue to get the good Home Depot coupons and make sure that "my job" gets done properly.

Now, I am regretting that decision. Not because I'm overwhelmed. Not because I can't do it.

But because I'm sick of people taking my shit. What the hell people!?!

Just because I don't have a door on my office doesn't mean I don't mind you taking my pens, rulers, calculators and all manner of office supplies. Because I do. I really do mind when you open my drawers and look for something you think you have to have without asking. I do mind when you hover about my desk and have juvenile discussions about politics, religion or last weekends trip when I am on the phone.

This is my office and just as I wouldn't walk into your office (you know, the office that has a door and a lock?) and shuffle through your stuff without asking, I expect the same of you. I'm asking for a modicum of respect when it comes to my workspace. Ok?

Now back the bleepity bleep off and stay the bleepity bleep away from my stuff!

/end rant

Friday, July 11, 2008

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Mr. Woo

I don't know what was different this morning compared to yesterday morning but whatever it was, it made Mr. Woo sing. It was a pleasant crow too, just as the sun was coming up. Perfect timing for the wannabe city farmer that needs to get her butt up to finish her fall and winter beds.

Fortunately/unfortunately, he's not going to delight us with his internal alarm clock much longer. Yesterday, I noticed him being a bit aggressive with my red hen, Ruby, and who knows what other kinds of mischief my teenage cockerel has been causing when I'm not looking. Besides, he's skiddish and wont let me anywhere near him so it's good timing because I've been preparing myself to get rid of him since I noticed his comb was bigger than the others- months ago. His crowing is the absolute line in the sand. It's time to say goodbye to Mr. Woo.

Part of saying goodbye is to take his life. Culling is a typical practice on the farm and even though I don't actually have a farm, I do have a desire to prepare a meal (mostly) from my own backyard. I'd like to be able to be (mostly) self reliant (for a million reasons that we can discuss in the comments). I know what to do and technically, I know how to do it too but...

But I'm afraid that when I take the knife to his neck, a part of me will die with him.

I'm afraid of losing a sensitivity to life that I've always had for all creatures, even spiders and other creepy crawly things. Hell, I couldn't stand the thought of unwanted mice suffering with a broken neck in my kitchen, so I adopted a cat...I (we, familia Franti) do not care for cats.

Although a quick and easy solution is to find a neighbor who is willing to "take" him for me, it will only be a temporary solution. In time, it will be one of hens' turn at the chopping block and I am positive that will be far more difficult because I like my hens. So now I vacillate between what I want to accomplish, what needs to be done, the options, the long term solution and the short term fix.

Any of you have experience with this? Any suggestions for the first time rooster murderer?

Also, anyone out there considering the urban farm and self reliance ? What are your reasons?

Maybe I am just making a bigger deal out of this than I need to. Yeah. That's probably it- I'm a chickenshit.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Walkable Communities

At the very last minute, I booked a couple nights at a condo in Park City for me and mr. mfranti over the 4th O' July holiday. Park City is a place that I typically have no interest in visiting except for events held at the Resort or maybe a trip to Kimball Junction to hit up the Pearl Izumi outlet. In this instance, I had nothing going on for the holiday weekend, the room was cheap, the drive was 30 minutes and it's about 10-15 degrees cooler than than the high 90's forecasted. Seems like a good reason to suck it up and go, no?

So....I have to reluctantly admit that I was pleasantly surprised. Park City is, despite its opulence and wealth and it's determination to make everything look the same, very charming. It's also a very walkable community, the big bright spot of my weekend. I parked my car on Friday, unloaded the mountain bikes and didn't drive until we left on Sunday.

Now, I understand that because it's a tourist destination, it makes sense that condos are tucked right into shopping/retail/office space, that all buses run from Kimball Junction to the resorts and main street, that there's a place to eat (and drink) every few hundred yards and that there's all sorts of bike/walk trails designed to get the traveling pedestrian/bike commuter to _________.

What I don't understand is why it is so difficult to duplicate this in every community. Why aren't our city leaders trying to (re)design similar cities? My very unsophisticated (and mediocre) brain says this kind of city planning is a revenue generator or in other words, "good for business." If John Doe can walk to the local market/restaurant/bar, he will buy more chips/food/beer. and he will do it frequently and as a perk, he wont be taking up space on the roadways.

I know we are attached to our cars, nothing is going to change that and I'm not asking for a major overhaul, just a little more planning, re-planning and a focus on building neighborhoods.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

cafe au lait off...

i likes my coffee. ain't no denying that. and yeah, i'm a sucker for the overpriced light mint mocha chip frappuccino that comes from the giant corporate whore that it is starbucks.

now, i ain't no financial know it all either, but when the the starbucks started popping up on every corner in the salt lake valley, my head shook and i had to laugh. not because coffee wouldn't sell well in our mormon mecca. au contraire...the faithful need to have a vice and i think the next step up from a diet coke is a frothy coffee smoothie--yum yum (i'm proof!)

i had to laugh because it was only a matter of time before all those trendy coffee houses would take a hit from our stellar economy.

so this morning when I awoke to news that starbucks would be closing 600 stores, i had a good snicker because my prediction was spot-on and then i felt a pang of sadness for the thousands of college students trying to squeeze out a buck and hopefully a better life in the process.



i am back to the office after 24 hrs of a sudden onset of food poisoning. (i think)

you know, it's being sick like that- the kind of sick where your skin hurts and you've purged everything in your system and you can do nothing but rock back and forth and hope that it will be over with soon-that reminds one to be grateful for their continued health.

many times yesterday, as i was writhing in pain and hunched over my toilet, my mind would turn to those poor souls undergoing chemotherapy and i would remind myself to stop complaining because this too shall pass.

but i also realized something else. those folks who fight with everything they've got for their lives are better people than i am. frankly, i don't know if i could survive cancer. i don't know if i could put up the fight necessary. it seems like it would a lot easier to just lay down and die.

i am in no way suggesting that my little 24hrs of food poisoning is anything like the suffering of those with cancer.

and that is precisely my point.

i knew my sickness was temporary. i knew that i was experiencing only a fraction of someone else's pain and i knew that tomorrow, i will be back to normal and it was still almost more than i could take. if i knew that i was going to undergo that for months at a time...i might have just quit. which doesn't seem fair to my family but damn...

how people survive it is a mystery to me and one that i shall not take for granted.

god be with my brothers and sisters who at this time are fighting for their lives in one of the most horrible ways possible.

it's you, dear friends, that remind me to be grateful for the day ahead of me.

What is your footprint?

Ecological Footprint Quiz by Redefining Progress