Thursday, January 31, 2008

Because made me laugh so hard that I had to get up and walk away from the computer.

Fark just made my day.

Random Picture Thursday

This picture is dedicated to my friend Karen.

Karen owns a hamster.

Karen is a fan of Patrick Stewart.

Karen is weird.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Hope You're Having A Great Wednesday

...Cause mine has really been a killer.

Pondering Ponderous Ponderosities

I have a high school class reunion coming up this summer, and at this point I’m really not sure exactly how I feel about that.

What you have to understand is that I hated high school. Sure, as a teacher’s kid I was basically guaranteed an easy ride, but high school is a battlefield complete with land mines of clichéd self doubt and cliquish loathing. When I left high school I had a 3.95 GPA, I was goal oriented and ambitious, and I had plans and dreams and fantastically high hopes for my future. Unfortunately, and unknown me at that time, I didn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of actually succeeding in college (a very long story that I’m not going to share with you…EVER). Let’s just say that my educational short comings were quick to reveal themselves.

So how can I describe my high school to you, my intrepid reader? Constructed rather like a rabbit warren, my high school was a sprawling web of color-coded hallways. Yes, you read that correctly…color-coded hallways. The school board, in its infinite wisdom, decided that the students who would attend my high school would be too stupid to remember that their lit class was on the English/Literature hallway so they painted a purple stripe on both the walls and called it…prepare yourself for some impending genius…“The Purple Hall.” History was red, math and languages were orange, science was yellow, computers and shop were green, drafting was pink, and occupational classes were light blue. Interestingly enough, the band and chorus rooms were located on “The Band Hall”…I guess they had run out of colors by then. The contractor had decided to cut corners and improve the budget by leaving out the soundproof gasket between the gymnasium and rest of the school…meaning that by my senior year (when the building was only 10 years old) there were huge cracks in the walls all around the gym. The plumbing never functioned properly because the school was built on reclaimed swamp land. There was a marsh on the property just behind the baseball field which meant that the place was always over run with mosquitoes…a little malaria with your algebra today, class? When the fire alarm went off all the doors would automatically slam shut and lock…this included the exit doors. Of course, the device which triggered the automatic reaction was faulty and one well placed hit to the small metal box attached to the door frame could close every door in the place. And (yes, I know you aren’t supposed to start a sentence with AND) don’t even get me started on individual classmates or this post would NEVER end!

The long and short of this issue is really about the people with whom I attended high school. To put it simply, I didn’t like them then so why would I like them now? I honestly don’t care what they have done with their lives or made out of themselves. I don’t care who they married, how many children they have, or where they are living. The people who I liked/cared about I am still in contact with, but that list is short and exclusive. The few times that I have encountered someone I went to high school with in a random, public place (like the local Wal-Mart) the reaction has usually been one of “OH, you’re a memory from when my life didn’t suck!! I had such a great life back then!! I hadn’t made all these horrible mistakes!!! Hurray!! We should totally hang out!!!” To be quite frank, that is not what I want to be reduced to for those people.

Do you remember a series of car commercial from several years ago where the person’s past self had popped into the future to see what they had become? One of them involved a mom unloading grocery from her vehicle when her high school self walks up to her and taunts her about driving a minivan. I have the eerie sensation that the reunion would be a very similar situation.

The person I am today would not recognize the girl I was in high school. We are ten years and worlds apart from each other.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


A few days ago I made the somewhat rash decision to make an attempt at simplifying my life through organization and space optimization. In other words, I decided that it was time for my copious collection of DVD cases to go to ‘DVD case heaven’ (i.e. the landfill). So I purchased four of these cute little plastic boxes to store my DVD collection in instead. Several hours and a bazillion DVD cases later I am declaring myself ‘far more organized that I was a week ago.’

It’s all about the small victories.

Not the most riveting of blog posts, I know. But hey…life can be boring.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

More Random Picture Goodness

I’d like to dedicate this picture to my friend Robert, who has a little problem with ‘large flightless bird’ identification.

Just so you know, Robert dear, this one is an ostrich.

Hand Me That Bottle of ‘Babbling Beverage’

…I have to vandalize a speaker.

Last week was a bad one for me. We had a family medical crisis and I was stressed out and my mother got really sick and I couldn’t stop itching cause its winter and my skin is all dry and work was just driving me mad and things seemed to be falling down around my ears and I kept having those days where I just couldn’t hold onto anything and kept dropping stuff and running into things and tripping over my own feet and saying the exactly most wrong thing I could say in any given situation and to top it all off I’m apparently trying to get a cold or something cause I’m feeling really run down and have a bad cough. *We interrupt this blog post for a deep breath.*

So in the middle of that week I made a short stop at my local Best Buy and wandered out about ten minutes later clutching a brand new Limited Edition Satin Silver Slim Line PlayStation 2 (and a memory card so that I could actually play the thing). I then wandered into my local GameStop and picked up a copy of ‘Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.’ (I can already hear Robert and Carl laughing.) Most of my free time since then has been spent playing my new game and I’m completely enamored with it. I turn off the task list and just wander the halls and grounds of Hogwarts Castle looking in every corner, opening every door. I hide under my Invisibility Cloak and sneak around the dungeons eavesdropping on the Slytherins. I hide in the stacks in the Restricted Section of the library so Hermione can’t find me. I climb the outside walls of the castle and stand of hidden ledges where Ron can’t follow me and just stare at the computer generated scenery. In short, I get as lost in the world of fantasy as I possibly can.

Growing up as the only child of older parents I seemed to have developed a very overactive imagination. Once I learned to read I fell in love with the worlds of literature and history. Nothing was more satisfying than finishing my homework so that I could return to the adventures of Robin Hood or the antebellum days of Huckleberry Finn. I could hear the ringing of steel when The Three Musketeers were fighting, I could smell Pa’s pipe smoke and hear his fiddle as Laura and I grew up in the Little House on the Prairie. I climbed mountains with explorers, sailed the seven seas with pirates, and once I even moved into the first colony on the surface of the Moon. I lived in the world of books and my own daydreams and can still catch myself drifting off when I stare out of a window for a little too long (which is why I never sat near them while I was in school).

I am very much a fan of Harry Potter. I think that, if for nothing else, J.K. Rowling should be commended for the fact that she has gotten an entire generation of ‘disaffected youth’ to read. Not only that, she managed to get them so excited to read that they happily stood in long lines outside of bookstores waiting for midnight so that they could get their hands on a copy of the continuing adventures of Harry and his friends. I openly and honestly admit to having stood in line for three such events…and I honestly can’t think of any other books I would have done this for (well…unless I could have been around when a new Jane Austen or a new Charles Dickens novel came out).

So with all that said I will continue to play my Harry Potter video games no matter how much I’m teased for doing so. (Oh, and as a side note to Robert and Carl…I have enough dirt on both of you to fill whole volumes. Just remember that.) Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go figure out how to make the gigantic clock in the clock tower run backwards.

Random Picture Thursday

Just don't try that in my hometown, buddy. They don't call it "The Chicken Capital of the South" for nothing...

Monday, January 21, 2008

Thoughts on 6:00 A.M.

Ah, Monday. What a horrible way to spend one-seventh of your life. Have you ever met anyone who enjoyed a Monday? How about anyone who even moderately liked Monday? Anyone?... Anyone? ...

Nope, didn’t think so.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Wrong Number

…no, this isn’t 867-5309 and no, you can’t speak to Jenny.

Due to the recent round of medical drama going on in my family it is safe to say that I have spent much of the previous forty-eight hours somewhat on edge. So when the house phone, an extension of which sits about eighteen inches from the head of my bed, rang this morning at 6:00am I was noticeably alarmed. Once I had peeled myself off the bedroom ceiling (metaphorically of course) I turned a bleary eye toward the caller I.D. just long enough to note that it was a wrong number and hit the mute button so that I could go back to sleep.

Roughly two minutes later the phone rang again. Noting that it was the same wrong number I snatched the handset from the cradle and hit the talk button. I wasn’t just awake now, I was awake and pissed.

Me: “YES??”
Caller: “Who is speaking?”
But what I said was:
Me: ‘Who are you calling?”
Caller: (something in a thick Indian accent)
Me: “YOU HAVE A WRONG NUMBER!” and I hung up
What a way to start a Thursday, huh?

Sadly, this is only the most recent in what has been a long string of strange phone calls since I acquired a land line under my own name from the phone company. Clearly the number they assigned to me has changed hands many, many, many, MANY times. We get calls for an insurance agency, a woman named Maria, a woman named Gertrude, and a guy named Dave. We get calls from collection agencies, Bank of America (whom neither I nor my roommate bank with), lots of toll free numbers (usually wanting Maria), and one guy who had an entire conversation with dead air after our answering machine clicked on (he even left us his social security number…not the best idea really)! The annoying part is that we can’t seem to make the calls stop no matter how often we tell people that “This isn’t Maria’s number anymore.”

So I have dutifully registered my number on the National Do Not Call list and eagerly await the day that someone calls my home number looking for me.

Random Picture Thursday

…because my inner history major just loves this picture for so many reasons.

An 'Unaware' Update

My mother got a phone call last night…from my grandfather. He is comfortably ensconced in the neurological unit of his local hospital where he is busy charming all the nurses (who think he is just the cutest thing) and enjoying the hospital food. He even has a set of ‘regular pajamas.’ He is getting an MRI today (which he is actually very excited about) and will be kept in the hospital at least two more days while his medication is adjusted.

It turns out that my grandfather has something called ‘Transient Ischemic Attack’ or TIA for short. This is a condition that is sometimes referred to as a ‘mini stroke.’ Basically a TIA happens when the blood flow to part of the brain is blocked or reduced (often because of a blood clot) and after a short time the blood flows again and the symptoms go away. People who experience these the way that my grandfather has been – you feel dizzy, clumsy, and have trouble standing - often call them ‘weak spells’ or ‘faint spells’ or ‘episodes.’ When my grandfather described the symptoms he had been having the doctor recognized it as TIA and had him sent to the hospital for testing in hopes of preventing a serious stroke from occurring. (My great-grandfather died from a stroke.) This condition can be controlled, at least in grandpa’s case, through a small change in diet and a change of medication. This is all really good news.

And to top it all off…it snowed last night.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Just When Everything...

...seemed to be going so well.

My grandfather had a stroke Tuesday afternoon while sitting in the waiting room at his doctor’s office. Of all the places he could have been when this occurred it seems that he was in the best possible setting. His doctor checked him out and sent him on to the hospital. We don’t know much right now but it seems to have been a mild stroke (if in fact it was a stroke…because it isn’t always easy to get a straight story out of my grandmother), and he will be getting the full battery of tests before he is released. When my grandmother spoke to him on the phone last night his biggest complaint was that he wished he could have a pair of ‘real’ pajamas. So for the moment it seems that things will be fine.

But as I have repeatedly said to my coworkers this morning when they mention the ‘impending threat of snow’ that the weathermen keep predicting for this evening: “I’m not holding my breath.”

I’m not trying to be cruel; I’m being honest both with myself and with you. This is a situation which I just can’t see the bright side of yet.

F*cking Tuesday.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Because There Are Worse Things

...than being single.

Let’s begin today’s post with a little side trip: CLICKY!

This article was brought to my attention yesterday by the world’s greatest friend and roommate, Allison. (And yes, she is paying me to call her that.) The reason she brought this particular news story to my attention is that my former best friend’s husband is listed amongst the arrested. This is the (and I quote the former bf here) “wonderful man” for whom she happily gave up her independence, decision making abilities, personal checking account and last name. She must be so very proud.

There is an incredibly long and tangled back-story as to why this person’s folly brings me such delight which I won’t bore you with right now or ever actually (unless you ask me about it in which case I would be more than happy to share). It is simply enough to say that this is a very valid and entertaining example of karma.

Friday, January 4, 2008

The Inevitable Lame First Post which the blogger uses much self gratification and grandstanding to explain why they feel that their own opinions and complaints warrant web space.

My answer is simple, straight forward and honest: peer pressure. Like every other 'internet gateway drug' *coughcoughfacebookcough* once all my friends started doing it clearly it was only a matter of time before I caved as well. So yet another blog is spawned. Will people read it? Will I keep it up? I refuse to make any kind of bold statement declaring my intent one way or the other because that would be far too cliché...hell, even calling it cliché is...yeah, I'm not going to type that word again.
So here it is world, my blog.