Here is a picture of unidentifiable people having fun. If you look very closely, you will see them. They are throwing puffballs at one another. It is this sort of pointless cheerful behavior that keeps us all pleasant and kind.

If you have not done something pointless, fun, and physical today, go do so right now. The result will be greater pleasantness and cheerfulness on your part. You will then be nicer to the people you meet, and the overall pleasantness of the world will be increased by just that little bit.

This is a puffball, horse apple, or — as the fellow from Oklahoma calls it — a snake apple. It is properly known as the fruit of the Osage Orange tree, or hedgeapple. But I have never heard anyone call it that. It looks like a hard chartreuse brain. The Oklahoman claims that it will keep snakes away from your property, and this amazing website ( ) claims that it is a good insect repellant. In fact, the amazing thing about this website is that they suggest uses for puffballs and sell them. They have excerpts from Martha Stewart saying you can decorate with these things and an announcement that they are not toxic, though they offer no recipes. As far as I know, the only thing you can really do with a puffball is throw it. Once the trebuchet is repaired, it should be excellent for tossing puffballs.

My Mysterious Object (it is a Christmas present, and the recipient might read this, for all I know) continues very slowly, as I have very little time to devote to it this week. It is now 45 days till Christmas, so I must average one finished object every five days if I am to complete all the presents I have planned. I also have to make a black dress for a performance next week, complete the Thanksgiving table runner, finish organizing and publicizing a food drive/open house for the following week, prepare for houseguests and Thanksgiving dinner the week after that — and of course from Thanksgiving till Christmas is a blur for those of us who work in retail, and for moms in general. With all that, it might be best to follow the examples not only of the people in the picture at the top of the page, but also of the dogs at the right. Having done pointless, cheerful, physical things, they then loll around and let someone else take care of them.