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wotd: potable

potable \POH-tuh-buhl\, adjective:
1. Fit to drink; suitable for drinking; drinkable.
noun:
1. A potable liquid; a beverage, especially an alcoholic beverage.



These signs are all over in Tucson: in public parks, along landscaped medians, at golf courses. I suppose, if you'd been outside for a long enough time on a hot summer's day, you might consider drinking from the irrigation system, but if you live in Tucson you carry potable water with you pretty much everywhere you go. If you're a dog, though, you can't read, and you can't carry your own water, and if it's hot and your master has you on a long walk, you might just drink from the irrigation system, despite the written warning.

Cassie did just that one warm summer morning, halfway through our walk around Udall Park. A woman walking toward us saw Cassie drinking from a puddle that had formed around a sprinkler head. "That's reclaimed water," she was sure to tell me. At first I didn't understand what she was getting at. My dog shouldn't drink the precious water meant to keep the grass green? Was I stealing city resources? Did she think Cassie might get sick from drinking nonpotable water? I should have said, "That's OK. She's a reclaimed dog." But I think I said something like, "That's OK. She eats poop."

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wotd: temporize

temporize \TEM-puh-ryz\, intransitive verb:
1. To be indecisive or evasive in order to gain time or delay action.
2. To comply with the time or occasion; to yield to prevailing opinion or circumstances.
3. To engage in discussions or negotiations so as to gain time (usually followed by 'with').
4. To come to terms (usually followed by 'with').

It's easy to tell yourself that you'll write a daily blog entry using the word of the day from dictionary(dot)com as a prompt, and equally easy to temporize your daily entry by waffling over what to write about, or evading your obligation by procrastination. There. Bedtime.

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40 observations on the eve before my 40th birthday

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1. I love making pinatas. I've made a pinata for Jack's birthday for the last five years. The Death Star, a jellyfish from Spongebob, Patrick Star from Spongebob, Plankton from Spongebob, and just this year King Pig from Angry Birds. I've been commissioned by a friend to produce another Angry Birds Pig pinata for her son's birthday. I'm gonna do it.

2. Right now three of my ten fingers hurt when I type. I don't bite my nails (unless one is already broken) but I do pick and pull at my cuticles. I've developed acute paronychia, a bacterial infection, at those three finger tips. The one that hurts the most is my right thumb. Space bar hell. I've done this to myself since childhood. When I'm pulling and nipping at a hangnail, I know it's going to hurt but I go ahead and do it anyway.

3. I consider myself substantial: in body and in mind. I am robust. I have zeal. I just don't have any confidence.

4. My brain stop…