Thursday, September 11, 2008

Safety in Numbers

Today's Wonder of the World is..The Tape Measure! And All The Wacky Things Artists Do With It!

Flickr photo by J the B
How I love tape measures.
Whether they're big

or small, I love them just the same.
Today I love tape measures because they never change.
Today I cling to my tape measure because it has numbers I can count on.
Numbers are comforting in my time of need. I know what to expect from them. I know what comes next. Numbers are my friends, and they're not joining in the world's attempt to make me think I'm going cuckoo.

Allow me to explain.
This week the world has conspired to convince me I'm losing my mind.
Here are 3 proofs. Count them. Three.

1. A big Bucket O' Wine brewing on my kitchen counter has been whispering to me all week, fizzing, and hissing at me every time I walk past, threatening to take over the world with its yeasty scent and top layer of slime . The bag of grape hulls is planning a break out--I can see it pushing up against the cloth Todd tied down to restrain it. It's saying, "I'm outta here woman, when you least expect it, and I'm heading straight for you."

2. A couple nights ago, when I had just fallen into a deep sleep, Ben went sleepwalking and set the burglar alarm off. (Yes, I have a burglar alarm. Not because we keep treasure chests full of gold and jewels in my house, but because I live with a family of sleepwalkers. I can't have them wandering the neighborhood with their arms outstretched, The Zombie Family of Greer, South Carolina! The alarm is to keep the crazies in, not out!)
It scared me so that in my bumbling around I knocked the phone off the hook. Next thing I know Todd is calling me on my cell phone from his business trip to Germany, saying the security company called saying our home line was busy, so they sent the police on the way.

3. Then yesterday Sam did not get off the school bus. I waited and waited. Tanner and I walked up to the bus stop and the bus passed by, now empty. Where was Sam?
I called the school.
"Mrs. Ramsey," the secretary said, " you called today and said you would pick him up."
"Um, no ma'am, I don't think I did."
"I talked with you myself. We had to look up his carpool number because you never can remember it."
"I don't think that was me."
"Oh yes it was," she said. "I have the message in front of me. From Becky Ramsey. Sam will be a car rider today."
I wanted to gnash my teeth. I wanted to call out "Stella! Stella!" Was I losing my mind?
Instead I pulled myself together and picked up my son.

It turns out the secretary was reading a message left over from last week.
Take that, World! Ha! I'm not a loony bird after all!

Tape measures wouldn't do that to me.
How I love them.
I'd even put my money in them.

Flickr photo by undoneclothing
And I'd put my tape measure wallet in a tape measure purse!

Flickr photo by undoneclothing
You can find those HERE, at undone clothing's Etsy site.
I've had these tape measure treasures on my mind ever since I saw them back in April of 2001 in my favorite magazine, Home Companion.

Photo from Home Companion, April 2001
Aren't they amazing? They're made by the artist Karyl Sisson.
She made these too.

Photo from Home Companion, April 2001
Tape measures remind me there is order in our universe.
Tape measures help me see the light!
These lamps are made by artist Chrissy Angliker. You know, they kind of look like beehives!
I want the yellow one for the craft room of my dreams.
Speaking of dreaming, this ferocious guy might show up in my next one.

Flickr photo by pomphorhynchus
If my kids will stop being zombies and let me get some sleep!
Not criticizing them, mind you. Why, they're practically perfect in every way!

Flickr photo by kavingate
Have a Wonder-full Thursday, y'all!
And enjoy a bit of Mary Poppins with her amazing tape measure! It shows up around the 2 minute mark.

Love, Becky


Barb said...

Hi Becky,
I love that tape measure tiger- how cool is that?

When I was with Clinique, I roomed with a sleepwalker at a dep't mtg. It made for a few very interesting days and boy was I exhausted.

The wine does sound a little scary right now.


Felicity said...

"Let's see how you measure up!"

I love that. I wish I had one of THOSE tape measures! Great post.

LW said...

I love the wonderful creations form the Home Companion magazine.
Very clever…

I enjoyed this post…
You can always count on the good old tape measure.


Tara said...

Hi Becky,

Loved the tape measure post! Mary Poppins has always been a favorite of mine as in forever. LOL


Suzie said...

That sleep walking stuff sounds so scary. When B was little he used to have night terrors scared the hell out of me.

Rosemary said...

Who knew all that could be done with a tape measure. Wow!
Don't you hate it when someone keeps telling you that you are wrong and you know what you said or did. You win!!!
Have a great day Rebecca!

Jamie said...

The "keeping the crazies in, not out" comment made me laugh :) You're so funny! I think if I were to have a craft room I'd want that tape measure lamp, too!

My husband requires that a mini tape measure be in my purse at all times. Isn't that funny? And, truth be told, there have been times I've needed it!

Anonymous said...

Becky, I empathize with the idea that the world is conspiring to make you believe you are insane... it does that from time to time. I'm learning to sort of enjoy the twisted realities when they come my way - they make for great writing material! Thanks for my daily dose of wonders.

jenniferw said...

The tiger is adorable.

Just don't put no old tape measure 'round my waist. Or what used to be my waist ...

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Great tape today! Breathe deep--and know you'll be okay--despite crazy wine and the rest of it.

Alex said...

Becky, where DO you find all the amazing things that you blog about? I LOVE stopping by. :)

Attic Rat said...

I have one of those cool folding rulers that belonged to my husband's Dad. It's a treasure for sure!

cindy said...

LOL! Glad you are not going crazy! And I too, love a good tape measure! Oh, and thanks for my book (and post cards and french tin - love them too!). Can't wait to dig into the book...looks great! : D


Rebecca Ramsey said...

Y'all are awesome.
Yep, the sleepwalking thing is mega-weird, but they all do it, so I'm sort of used to it. If you can get used to people in trances, running around your house and talking nonsense in the middle of the night.

I wish y'all could smell my wino house.

the Amateur Book Blogger said...

What a fun post - and they can occupy a two-year-old for ages (well, fifteen minutes is ages these days...)

adrienne said...

Now I'm glad my kids don't ride the bus. Scary story!
I just loved all the tape measure art, though.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

That's the reason my bags are so heavy. The big, industrial size tape measure!

May Vanderbilt said...

Sleep walkers are scary. I'm marrying into a family full of them. Once my brother in law PUNCHED SOMEONE in his sleep.

If you knew him, it would be even more shocking. He's the quietest, gentlest creature on earth!

liquidambar said...

If you hadn't figured out that the phone message to the school was an old one, I was going to suggest that the bucket o' wine made the call. It sounds as if it's plotting something.

Jenn H.

Jojo said...

Don't count on the tape measure!! Just ask Mother Menopause . . . .

~~ATTIC CLUTTER~~ said...

Hi Becky...
Oh what a fun measuring post(:) you find the funnist(:) is that a word>>?? Pictures..
glad you came by and have a great weekend..hugs,Patty

Randy and Linda said...

Hi Becky,
I'm secure in my numbers, too. I can always rely on them, though can't always remember them. All numbers and math are solid, wonderful, useful, and fun, except for Statistics, which can be very nebulous and deceiving. Linda always carries a miniature tape measure in her pocketbook - so very handy. I've never thought about tape measures in art, but you've proven they have their place. Do you have any of the antique tape measures that are made of wood and they collapse by folding their hinges back & forth? Nice collectible. Ever wonder why there is some slack at the pull-tab at the beginning of the tape measure. It's there to account for the thickness of the thumb tab. So when you're measuring the outside of something, the slop causes it to pull outward, and when you measure the inside of something the slop is pushed inward. So basically the slop (amount of looseness = thickness of tab). It's important if you want accuracy!
I started with the vin when I was 16 or 17. A friend in Middle School did a wine-making project in his locker, boy did we think that was cool! Tastes strange because it was still fermenting. The teachers never caught on that this friend was drinking between classes! So a year or two later I decided I wanted to make some at home and bought a kit. But instead of doing it the best way as your are doing, I bought pure Welches grapejuice concentrate, and added sugar to it. In 3-5 days yours should finish all the significant fermenting, so that sweet aroma and Carbon Dioxide will go away. I sure hope your seal on top doesn't burst - we're pulling for ya. I never aged my wine - couldn't wait that long! It was usually consumed as soon as it was palatable! I was always a kid-scientist and boy was it fun!
I feel for you with that sleep-walking zombie stuff, because I have sleep seizures that are pretty rough, though luckily I don't leave the bed, but by the time it's over I feel like I've run 10 miles. Kapooped!
The security stuff - always better safe than sorry. You can never have too much of that.
I've missed your blogs for a few days, but I'm glad I feel mostly caught-up, you high-achiever you!

Ryan Field said...

What a great blog!! I found it through a link on Nathan Brandsford's blog about Monkeys. Not only do I have a huge collection of Monkey *stuf*, from a monkey Chandelier to the fabric on your chair, but I can't believe there's someone else who likes Clyde Edgerton and WALKING ACROSS EGYPT. I read that when it first came out, and then read everything else he wrote afterwards.

TattingChic said...

That was funny, "They have numbers I can count on..." very cute, Becky! You're so witty!

Cathy ~ Tadpoles and Teacups said...

Love it! And my favorite movie too.