Category Archives: Quirky news items

Eclipse Sisters? That’s us.

Today we have a sunrise–a real one–after a week of soaking rain. And oh, the difference sunshine makes for the Pacific Northwest. Spring at last!

And spring brings hope for summer.

Tell you what, this summer I’m looking forward to the Great American Eclipse. August 21st has been on my calendar for a while, although it doesn’t need to be. If our skies are cloud-free that morning, we won’t be able to miss what happens.

Map courtesy of

It’s also cool for us here at Jane Started It because of its path. The total eclipse lies just south of Susan Kaye and me here in Oregon. It also lies just south of Robin Helm and Gayle Mills in South Carolina.

We met on-line, we share a blog. And now we will share the path of the sun’s shadow.

All of North America will be able to see at least a partial solar eclipse, according to the Great American Eclipse website. Do have a look around. There’s fascinating stuff there.

How about you? Are you in the path of the eclipse?

Laura Hile (1)


We’ve had the wildest winter I can remember. In Portland, Oregon, the winters are usually drippy and overcast. However, this year’s winter has been cold and snowy. It has produced some great photographs.


This is a photograph of crows sitting in snowy trees in downtown Portland, Oregon. The photograph was taken by C.S.I. Walker Berg of the Portland Oregon Police Bureau. This was his view from the Justice Center’s 12th floor.  Portland has enough of a crow problem that they have begun to employ falconers to move block-by-block, hunting the black birds.

It looks like the crows are settled in for the night, though and any hawks will just have to wait for morning.

The police department shared the image dubbed “Crows on Snow” on Facebook and Twitter where it quickly went viral.

My first thought was “Wow,” and then I thought:


From the sublime to the ridiculous in one easy jump.

I write like …


I put a section of writing containing FW’s pov, and a section of Anne’s pov into the window. So, I write FW like King and Anne like Christie.


Try it: I Write Like

Big Bird? Big Deal

The model, Heidi Klum went to the Emmys Sunday and this is what she wore:

Image from

Image from

Big Bird has been mentioned. Swiffer dusters. Easter chicks. I think it was put together by a committee. One that had no clear goals. It really doesn’t matter because Ms Klum is gorgeous. She is 42 and looks 24. As long as she shows up wearing something, who really cares?

I have to laugh, because it Mellisa McCarthy had shown up in this, the sound of the haters hating would still be reverberating in our ears.

Hail to Mr. West

Kim-Kardashian-and-Kanye-West-There are a lot of people already fed up with the political campaigning for the 2016 presidential election. Me included. However, if you think you’re going to get any relief from the two-and-three year campaigns, buck up, sissypants. Kanye West announced the VMA awards that he intends to run for the 2020 presidential election. I’m sure this means he will start getting the exploratory committee, nonprofit PACS, and campaign theme anytime now.

BTB, I don’t listen to Kanye (SURPRISE!), so if any of you know his music and could make suggestions from his song catalog, that would might be a fun exchange.

I’m just guessing but I would not be surprised if his mother-in-law, Kris Kardashian is his campaign manager. His wife, the prospective First Lady–let THAT sink in for a moment–Kim Kardashian West, will surely be the official campaign photographer.

If elected, the Wests will be the first couple in the White House in which she is arguably more famous than him. I remember when Ronald Reagan ran for president and all his movies were embargoed due to campaign advertising rules. In the comments, please discuss just how we keep Kim’s sex tape from influencing voters.

West is like Donald Trump in that he is loud and proud of his opinion. Who can forget the good times when he has stormed the stage of an awards shows to rebuke Taylor Swift for winning instead of Beyonce? I’m thinking this might come in handy in his foreign policy. He could do a riff on Pink Floyd: “Hey, Putin, leave Ukraine alone!” And would maybe stay on key.

Celebrities making ridiculous remarks is now the foundational staple of the Internet. IMO. And West’s comment will be replaced with something else more ridiculous soon enough. The only question is, will the commenter be another celeb or will it be West-topping-West?

Anyway, the weekend is coming. Think about a West presidency and tell us how it would affect you. And Beyonce. Because I’m sure West would use his power of the pen to do something magnificent for The Queen Bee.


Shakespeare and Jousting and Aliens (Oh, My!)

Oregon-Shakespeare_54_990x660With the arrival of spring weather, I am reminded of summer travels. Sometimes, as was the case with my trip to Japan last summer, traveling offers a change to experience a different culture. The United States is such a melting pot that we can experience many cultures through festivals and never leave the country.

Photo courtesy of T. Charles Erickson

Texas-Ren-Fest_54_990x66010Best Readers’ Choice Awards offers you the chance to vote for the best festival. Since I’ve never been to any of the twenty festivals nominated, and there was no Austen festival, I voted for the next best thing – the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. The Texas Renaissance Festival in Todd Mission was a close second, and the UFO Festival in (of course) Roswell, New Mexico, came in third.      Photo courtesy of Texas Renaissance Festival


You may vote for your favorite once a day until polls close on April 13 at noon, EST.

The UFO Festival had me at the use of the word “quirky” in their description.  Dressing up for this one would be fun! Right up there with Comic-Con International in San Diego!

Which festival would you most like to attend?

Photo courtesy of

And the Winner Is . . .

How could you not give this man an award? It's a travesty.

How could you not give this man an award? It’s a travesty.

The Oscars have come and gone again, and once more, after reading the lists of nominees, I have seen a total of two of the movies nominated for anything – Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men: Days of Future Past. There are six more that I will probably rent when they come out in DVD – Into the Woods, Unbroken, American Sniper, The Theory of Everything, Guardians of the Galaxy, and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. The ratings and language make one of those very “iffy” for me. I had never even heard of most of the nominated movies, and only two on either of my lists won anything.

The films that win aren’t generally popular with audiences. The masses (translated “we”) apparently don’t recognize which movies are worth going to see. They aren’t “arty” enough for those who vote for the awards. That’s okay. People involved with movies like Superman, The Avengers (and all the spin-offs), Maleficent, Frozen, Divergent, and other popular favorites are laughing all the way to the bank.

In fact, when a movie wins an Oscar, I wonder what’s wrong with it.

On the upside, Lady Gaga’s tribute performance of a medley of songs from The Sound of Music was a pleasant surprise. She can sing! And she wasn’t wearing a dress made of meat or metal! She kept on all of her clothes! And Julie Andrews herself joined Gaga at the end! It was, hands down, the best moment of the Oscars.


By the way, I think Chris Evans would make a wonderful modern Darcy. If you read Forever Yours, he’s my model.