31 December 2009

India Lima Yankee

current mood: defiant

And you're singing the songs
Thinking this is the life
And you wake up in the morning and you're head feels twice the size
Where you gonna go? Where you gonna go?
Where you gonna sleep tonight?
~ “This is the Life” by Amy Macdonald

Tomorrow, a new decade is upon us. The Tens/Teens, which is far less fun to say than the Aughts. Not to mention, as far as ages go – the teens have never been good ones. In 2014, will the century hate us like 14 year-olds hate their parents? Regardless, (not, “irregardless” which people LOVE to say – without any idea of its lack of meaning), whether the teens hate us or not, they are here to stay for the next 10 years. Welcome!

Being a classic Virgo, I have not only made New Years resolutions, I have also made New Decade resolutions. If I keep any of them past June, I will have fulfilled any realistic obligations. Because I do not want to publicly attract ridicule, I am not sharing all of my resolutions with the general population. I already hear enough criticism from myself – I don’t need your help. Still, I am comfortable sharing that I am going for massive reductions in size, clutter, unhealthy food intake, and debt. I am also going to strive for an increase in self-confidence, positive thinking, and hydration.

Tonight, I hope everyone stays safe and warm and has a sober driver/chaperone. If you need to drunk dial – y’all know the number.

Fare thee well, 2009!

23 December 2009

A Holiday Story - of sorts

There once lived a girl named, Killian, who loved to go to office supply stores. Some unenlightened peeps called this an obsession; but for her, it was merely a safe place in which to dream and wander without fear of ridicule or running into anyone she didn’t care for. You see, only good people go to office supply stores. No Jerk faces Allowed – is an unposted sign at every store with “office” or an office supply in its title.

One cold and blustery evening, she was perusing the aisles of the local nationally recognized brand of office supply stores, when she heard a commotion. A commotion? she thought, in an office supply store? What is the world coming to? Still, her curiosity got the best of her and she tip-toed to the end of her aisle and stared around the corner at the cause of the aforementioned commotion.

There was a very angry customer. His ethnicity is not relevant, except for the fact that his family ‘back home’ is probably going to have my job and yours this time next year. The customer was raising his voice – which made him even more difficult to understand. I am sure his name was “Bob” and that he and I have exchanged words before on the telephone. Anyway, I digress. “Bob” was pissed and the middle-aged female associate was yelling above him. Another manager was present, though remarkably silent. I think we were both hoping for a brawl.

No such luck – the fat lady stormed off, mumbling loudly to herself. Then Super Manager took over and calmed “Bob” down. Believing the show to be over, Killian returned to her original quest – finding the perfect pen. She narrowed her search down to three choices – the new uniball Fusion with the clear ink that turns to colored when it leaves the pen; the Parker Urban, which was elegant and modern, AND on clearance; and finally, the green cased professional desktop pen that looked to be durable as hell, and was also on clearance.

She took her three packages to the cash register, only to encounter still-angry sales lady, talking on her little associate headset, complaining about Bob while simultaneously seeking reassurance that she won’t get in trouble for her actions. She turned to our young heroine and asked for her “marketing card” which she didn’t have. As an alternative she asked for her phone number to type into the cash register. Before Killian could say 817, the associate typed 402, causing her issue when the entire number was recited.

Then, laughing, Ms. Associate commented that lots of out of town people were in the store that night and wanted to know where Killian was from. Hating when “the help” gets overly familiar, she curtly explained that she had moved to this fine city from the Lone Star state and had elected not to change her phone number. Not taking the hint, the associate adds, yeah it’s hard to remember a new phone number - so much easier to keep the old one. -- Whatever –

Walking out into the icy cold rain, Killian spoke aloud to no one in particular – fecking eejit – if it weren’t Christmas I’d have your ass fired for your stupidity and unprofessionalism.

Still she couldn’t remain irritated, because she had new pens to try out and letters to write.

The End

10 December 2009

Snuggie (the blanket with arms)

current mood: warm

If you're wondering if I want you to, (I want you to) I want you to
(I want you to)
So make a move, (Make a move) 'cos I ain't got all night
So much pain may come our way
There may come a day when we have nothing left to say
When the conversation stops, and we're facing our defeat
I'll be next to you and you'll be right there next to me
~ “I Want You To” by Weezer

NBF is a responsible with his finances. He does what he can to make sure that he doesn’t waste money on silly things, like turning on his heat. Actually, he does run his heat, but it is at a temperature a little too low for my comfort level (by “a little” I mean that I practically freeze to death while I am there. Due to my discomfort, he has been running it higher when I am present – but I feel badly that my need for warmer surroundings will push his electric bill over 20 bucks a month (lol, yes, he pays less than 20 dollars a month for electricity). Luckily for me, he is a smart cookie and decided the best option for both of us would be that I have a source of warmth that keeps me comfortable, while maintaining portability so I can move around the apartment with ease. His solution: Buy a Snuggie

Yesterday was the first opportunity I had to utilize it since our normal Tuesday Night date was postponed due to a blizzard. As soon as I got to his house, I opened the box. He bought me the bright blue one and it is so pretty. It even came with a free bonus, a self-opening book light that clips onto a book so that I can read in a dark room while wearing my Snuggie. For those of you who have never seen a Snuggie in person, let me share a couple of details of which I was unaware until actually opening the box:

1. The Snuggie truly is a blanket with arms. You wear it backwards compared to a jacket.
2. They are one-size fits all – so if you are 5’4’, like me, you will definitely have to roll up the sleeves and be careful not to trip when you walk around in it.
3. If you choose not to roil up the sleeves, you will resemble a Druid or Priestess and may convince people that you have magical powers.

Overall, I absolutely love my Snuggie and am going to have to get one for my own house as well. Now, I understand that not everyone wants a Snuggie. For those people, there is an alternative item. Here is the Youtube infomercial for the Snuggie alternative.

A big thanks to Dustin McLean for this infomercial production!

PERSONAL NOTE: You are one cool cat!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Someone is not being as upfront as expected. Check phone records.

07 December 2009


Current mood: over it

Oh, well happy New Year’s baby
we could probably fix it if we clean it up all day
Or we could simply pack our bags
And catch a plane to Barcelona 'cause this city's a drag
~ “Holiday in Spain” by Counting Crows

I received word that my anxiety medication will be moving to Tier 3 in my insurance company’s classifications of prescription drugs. Lucky me! I will now have more anxiety over the cost of the meds which are supposed to eliminate my symptoms of tarantism. Perhaps, I should pray to St. Paul for intercession. I highly doubt, however, that the secular actuaries at UHC will listen to what he has to say. No matter! I’ll probably freeze to death before the co-pay change takes effect anyway.

It snowed yesterday and last night. It is supposed to snow again tonight – then tomorrow, we are supposed to get a winter storm (aka blizzard). I am all for a White Christmas – but it is still 3 weeks away and I am not in favor of an entire month of snowfall. Does that make me a Scrooge? I believe snow is good for two things: 1. Sledding 2. Skiing

Since I have to work during the week, I see no reason why there should be any snow on the ground between Monday morning and Friday afternoon. Kids don’t need Snow Days. They can play in the snow on the weekends. I remember when Ex-Husband #2, the Twins, and I went to Six Flags over Texas for their winter wonderland and waited in line for 2 hours to sled down a real sledding hill with real (fake) snow. The line was ridiculous – but we waited, because the twins had so much fun sledding in Omaha that they ‘just had to do it again’. When our turn came, we climbed up this scaffolding disguised as stairs and sat down on plastic sleds. And we slid down the hill. When we reached the bottom, I looked at the twins and said, “Did you have fun?” They both looked at me as if I were an eejit and Girl Twin said, “Um, that wasn’t half as fun as sledding on the hill by Gigi and Papa’s.” Boy twin, who is far less diplomatic said, “That sucked.” Ex-husband pointed out that there went 2 hours of our lives we will never get back.

More honest words have never been spoken.

I want winter to be over.

PERSONAL NOTE: Watch your mailbox for surprises.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Some days I miss you. Some days I don’t.

04 December 2009

All She Wants for Christmas is HER Two Front Teeth

Current mood: fantastical

if the truth's overdue i know you'll remind me
if the truth police are sniffing out a lie
i've done nothing in life i can't put behind me
i'll use my life as an alibi
~ ‘My Uptight Life’ by Teenage Fanclub

Q: Where do dentists love to vacation?
A: The Mouth of the Mississippi.
(insert laughter here)

That joke was relayed to me via a dental assistant courtesy of a Laffy Taffy wrapper. Granted I was a captive audience and I had no where to run – but, it was funny and I laughed, then cut off my own airway with my tongue as I did all in my power to keep it away from the drill that was working on my tooth yesterday. Even now, as I sit here with a temporary crown (and lots of excess tooth cement() in my mouth, I am nervous about writing this -- since the assistant whom we’ll refer to as ‘Taffy’ for her Laffy Taffy jokes, asked for my blog address yesterday. I said it fast in hopes she will have forgotten it before there was time to write it down. I don’t need her knowing that I enjoy all this special time with the dentist because he is hot. Though, she does work with him, so she already knows he’s hot.

Last night’s visit took almost 2 hours and all of them were spent in the dental chair. A few things happened though, which almost revealed my fondness for Dr. Hottie. The first was my own carelessness. He was looking into my mouth, and I was staring at his brown eyes. He startled me with the question, “Are you watching me work in the reflection of my glasses?” Always quick on my feet, I responded in the affirmative. It was at that point that I actually realized there WAS a reflection to watch. I was saved by the obvious assumption that a patient would not be day dreaming about brown eyes while having teeth drilled. All following issues occurred because I get all giggly and blush bright red when he smiles at me. What a dork I am!

Plus, I have a very guttersnipe mind while lying in that dental chair with my dentist’s hands in my mouth. I didn’t heed his warning when he said, “I’m sorry this isn’t going to taste the best” . . . as he coated my tooth with some liquidy grossness, I was overconfident in my ability to not gag. He really underestimated how bad this stuff tasted . . . the instant it pooled in the back of my throat; I couldn’t breathe and began choking. He had to back up, along with the assistant, because I truly thought I was going to vomit in the chair. I sat up, coughing and sputtering; making that awful ‘ready to throw up’ guttural sound, while praying to the gods that I did not throw up in front of the hot dentist. Trying to laugh it off did not help, and finally the assistant rinsed my mouth and I declared that whatever that stuff was could not go back in my mouth. It tasted like stomach acid. I was apologetic – yet firm with the fact that it wasn’t happening again. Then, in an act that secured my adoration for him, Dr. Hottie asked the assistant to bring in a new chemical which they received as a sample. Lucky for me, with the exception of my tongue imprint, the mold process was successful.

I did learn some important lessons during this particular visit that I don’t think I would have learned anywhere else . . . 1. A woman in California rode the bus and a guy assaulted her by pulling out her two front teeth. I give the guy two more assaults before he evolves into a serial killer He has not yet been caught. 2. My dental center is the newest office; but gets all improvements last in the chain. This is A-OK, though, because it means they are not experimenting new things on patients. 3. Dr. Hottie and his assistant think I am their favourite patient (I may be exaggerating – but not by much). 4. It is not comfortable to have your mouth filled with cotton rolls, followed by expanding play dough-like stuff. 5. ‘Taffy’ is one of the funniest people I have ever met in a dentist office. And she found it funny when I responded with “No worries. It happens sometimes.” to this comment she made: “Here, let me wipe your face off. He spilled that stuff all over your mouth.”

I get to go back in a week to get my permanent crown. Then who knows how long it will be until I get to see my amazing dental duo again. I am a little sad. Though I will be happy not to have my mouth sore from their poking and prodding.

I guess that’s all for now. If you live in the Omaha metropolis and you need a good dentist – and you promise not to reveal my crush, I am happy to give you a referral. One more thing: if ‘Taffy’ did indeed find this blogsite, please pretend you haven’t. LOL

PERSONAL NOTE: I know what you did last summer.


23 November 2009

And Incidents Arose From Circumstance

current mood: sha la la la

Don't be afraid, oh my love
I'll be watching you from above
And I'd give all the world tonight,
to be with you
~ “I’ll Be There” by Escape Club

While watching ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ I was reminded that happy endings are sometimes more bitter than sweet. It also brought back memories of that great song, “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” by Deep Blue Something. Sometimes, in relationships, by the end, you are grasping at straws to find any commonality – anything to hold onto besides the memories of better times. I have not had very many romantic relationships which actually fall into the ‘relationship’ category. I have had one-sided crushes; friendships with benefits; and even emotionally debilitating, fanciful romances. But, when I think of actual relationships – where both parties behaved in a consistent manner for a minimum of 3 months. – the list is short.

In fact, last night, I was laughing at comments that a friend was leaving on my FB, because he was once the prime focus of all the romantic energy I had in me. While I was sitting there laughing, Mi Madre asked me to share the humor. When I told her who left the messages, she said, “You used to be so in love with him. You were so sure he was the end all, be all. You don’t still feel that way, do you?” LOL I responded in the negative – and didn’t feel it necessary to share the fact that I no longer feel the need to profess my undying love for the soccer player I once revered. Our friendship has evolved into something a little less stressful and a lot more real. He is still tempting though.

On Friday, NBF and I went to see Cirque Dreams Illumination at the Orpheum. Before the show, we didn’t have time to eat so we ran by Cubbies downtown and purchased a few purse-friendly snacks (chopped walnuts, Odawalla bars). While he was paying for our purchases, the girl behind the counter said in a very bored tone of voice, ‘Did you want to buy some energy beef jerky? No one ever buys any.’ Sure enough, there on the counter was a full jar of beef jerky with caffeine and guarana added to it. Then the other cashier piped in, ‘well that one guy who used to hang out in here all the time bought some once. I haven’t seen him around lately.’ We grabbed our snacks and left them discussing the Cubbies regular who once bought beef jerky with energy and his possible whereabouts. It was the first time I think I truly felt like Alice in Wonderland at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. How is a raven like a writing desk?

The Cirque show was mesmerizing. NBF and I were discussing the toll such feats take on the bodies of the performers. Does anyone know the average retirement age for a Cirque performer? I find circus people as intriguing as carnies. They are one and the same, I suppose. I don’t care if they are classy performers – let’s call a spade a spade or in this case a circus freak a circus freak. Anyone who can fold their body in half while dangling 20 feet above a stage is a circus freak! I am not being derogatory. They are amazing and talented folks – and probably very cool to chill with; but my guess is that our conversation would be limited by my inability to do anything remotely cool – hell; I cannot even do a push-up.

Before Machelle goes on a tirade regarding my mind-over-matter issues with push-ups, I want to let everyone know that NBF has me on a great strength training program and if I actually stick with it, I will soon be doing push-ups with the rest of the modern world. Plus, I am running out of time to apply for the FBI – and I know for a fact that push-ups are part of the physical requirements. I would be an amazing FBI agent. I crave the fashionable look of bullet-proof vests and dark sunglasses. I wonder what the age limit is for applying to be a ninja. That seems like a cool job too.

For those who don’t know – I had my root canal on Friday. Hot dentist did not perform the procedure. The Specialist did – and I am totally cool with that. The person who was supposed to get a root canal was a no-show, so they got me in. After last week’s fiasco in the dentist’s office, I am just happy that the issue was taken care of. Let’s revisit last week’s first attempted root canal . . . *rewind* *rewind* *rewind* -- I am reclining in the dentist chair. I am staring into the dark brown eyes of my very good looking dentist. He is holding a syringe in my mouth, and saying “You are going to feel a small pinch.” Numbness begins to permeate my mouth. We wait several minutes for it to take full effect. The drill begins – I feel a little pain. .. Followed by a LOT of pain. Dentist stops drilling. Another full dosage of anesthetic is given. BY the time we start drilling again, my body has already metabolized a lot of it. Hot dentist aborts root canal mission. I am referred to the aforementioned specialist. . . . *return to present time* Luckily, I still get to go back to Hot Dentist for the crown. Always be thankful for small miracles.

This week I will be packing and shipping Christmas presents. Yes, they are all wrapped and ready to go. Now the only Holiday Stress I have will be organizing and cleaning my room and crafts. Anyone want to help?

PERSONAL NOTE: I ordered your shirt. Hope it is what you wanted.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Thinking of you during your birthday week. Wish I could hold your hand one more time.

10 November 2009

And the Wall Came Tumbling Down

current mood: magnetic

There is no other place I want to be
Right here, right now
Watching the world wake up from history
I saw the decade in, when it seemed
The world could change at the blink of an eye
~ “Right Here, Right Now” by Jesus Jones

I receive a lot of forwarded e-mails on a daily basis. I used to be able to ignore them – but lately some people within the workplace have decided to send them as well. I read everything that gets sent via my work e-mail – as I know the one day that I just ASSUME that something is junk, it will turn out to be a test of some sort. Luckily for me, I have one friend, ‘Blue’s Mom’ who only forwards stuff that truly is funny. Sometimes she sends things I have seen before – but they are always real chuckle-fests so I look forward to receiving them. In fact, some of the stuff she has forwarded ends up being ‘inside jokes’ which make really stressful days more bearable. For instance, look at this picture:

How can someone not laugh at this? The look on that dog’s face is priceless. I don’t care whether or not it was altered with Photoshop. All I care about is the fact that every time I look at it, I laugh. It NEVER gets old.

So, today, I received a list of random thoughts. I will not print them all here – but I will highlight a few that I love, along with my personal commentary on the thought. I left the original numbers on each one – so if you would like to receive the whole list, just let me know.

1. I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

This is absolutely true. In fact, I have a couple friends who have very similar responsibilities when I die. Anything ‘embarrassing’ needs to be removed from prying eyes. I certainly don’t want my family debating on who gets to dispose of my ‘toy collection’. LOL Granted, it isn’t much of a ‘collection’ but I’d rather my family not have to wonder why I have Velcro wrist restraints while they are sorting through stuff for the estate sale. Ha ha ha

10. Bad decisions make good stories.

This is a truism which has haunted me since sophomore year in high school. For our composition class, we had to write an essay detailing when we made a difficult decision. I wrote mine about a time I made the ‘safe and responsible’ decision. It bored everyone. Yet, when I tell the story about the time I made a drug run with two strangers and a roadie from a band, then got to meet the band and the hottest drug dealer who has ever lived, people are amused. It’s a good story – but very poor decision-making.

11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.

NO comment. This has never happened to me.

17. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

Does anyone else do this? I know for a fact that there are people who have MY NUMBER in their phone for precisely this purpose. I not only have them in my phone for this purpose; but I have my ring tone set to silent for them as well. That way, I never accidentally answer without looking. It is quite effective.

18. My 4-year old son asked me in the car the other day "Dad what would happen if you ran over a ninja?" How the hell do I respond to that?

Ridiculous questions from children are the most difficult to answer. I remember when the twins asked us what a stripper was. I thought their dad was going to choke. I smiled and asked where they heard the term, as they were 6 at the time. They said they had heard a song with it. We clearly explained that a stripper was someone who stripped paint off walls and cabinets before they could be repainted. This made complete sense to them and I thought the subject was closed. Imagine my surprise a few weeks later when they pulled me aside to quietly explain that a stripper was someone who took her clothes off and danced. They thought it was important that I know the truth in case someone else asked me. Good Gourd!

Buck up little camper. Your box office funnies will bring sunshine to the other woes!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Next time you drunk dial me – identify yourself. Had I known who you were, I would have chatted longer.

06 November 2009

Sterile Loyalty

current mood: *blank*

But I want more than a touch I want you to reach me
And show me all the things no one else can see
So what you feel becomes mine as well
And soon if we're lucky we'd be unable to tell
What's yours and mine the fishing's fine
And it doesn't have to rhyme so don't you feed me a line
~ “Run-Around” by Blues Traveler

Walking into work this morning, I used my left arm to alleviate an itch on my nose. As my sleeve touched my face, I was assaulted by an aroma that can only be described with two words: ‘dog pee’. I stopped walking. I smelled my shirt sleeve again, in hopes that I merely had a misfire of neurons in my brain – and that my shirt didn’t actually smell like Ebie’s urine. NO SUCH LUCK! Brilliant.

It was six minutes until 8am. I couldn’t run to Wal-Mart to buy a new shirt. I couldn’t even run to No Frills. Of course, even though I work in a bloody mall, there are no stores in it – I had no choice but to continue walking into the building. Luckily, only the left sleeve carries the scent of Aroma d’Ebie. The rest of the shirt smells like fabric softener.

As soon as I reached my desk, I found my bottle of “Febreze To Go” and soaked the left sleeve with it. I also wiped down my arm with anti-bacterial wipes. The overwhelming combination of Febreze and Lysol covered up the smell of urine for at least 20 minutes. Damn, that stuff is persistent. I repeated the process again, this time ensuring that the cloth was completely saturated with Febreze. I could wring out the excess liquid onto the floor by the time I finished spraying. I used the remaining anti-bacterial wipes to clean my arm AGAIN, and then for good measure rubbed the sleeve with the wipes until they began to deteriorate. No more urine smell!

I just need until lunch time – when my friend and co-worker, ‘Blue’s Mom’, will return from her lunch break with a black shirt that I can wear. Luckily for me, she gets to go home and let her dog outside, where he will undoubtedly NOT URINATE on her clothes. I am so blessed to have such a charming little bitch at home. I use the term, bitch, in the appropriate sense.

Actually, there was a change of plans . . . I went to No Frills on break, bought some Tide, and hand washed my shirt in the break room sink. It is now hang drying in the cubicle at the end of my row. It is ultra dry in here and with any luck, the shirt will only be slightly damp by the time I leave for the second job!

My toothache is now a dull annoyance since I went to the new dentist last night and had my cracked filling replaced. My new dentist is very cordial. His hygienist is too – well, the one I met. The office has 6 or 8 dentists in it, so the others may not be as great. Still, Dr. Jace Williamson is an awesome dentist and he painlessly handled my tooth issue on short notice. And yes, for those of you who are already suspicious of my new found adoration for my dentist – he is very easy on the eyes. I definitely will enjoy my bi-annual teeth cleanings! Please do not confuse bi-annual (twice-yearly) with biennial (every two years). I love going to the dentist (even if they are not hot) and would not miss my 6-month cleanings ever!

In fact, I am going in for my 6 month cleaning TOMORROW!

PERSONAL NOTE: I love you. You are my refuge.

05 November 2009


current mood: in pain

Are - you in?
Livin' in sin is the new thing (Yeah).
Are - you in?
I am countin'!
Current mood: painful
~ ‘3’ by Britney Spears

I have a toothache. No one enjoys having them – and mine is probably not the worst toothache in the world. My face isn’t swollen. There is no giant infection in my mouth. Still, it IS a toothache – and it does INDEED hurt like a futher mucker. I have an appointment with the dentist Thursday night after work. I am very happy that this particular dentist could get me into the office so quickly. Normally, I abhor chain dental groups and avoid them with the same intensity that I avoid spiders, rabid dogs, and outhouses. This time, I couldn’t possibly wait until my personal dentist was free – which was sometime next week, if they could fit me in. Good Gourd!

While I was trick or treating in Texas with Girl Twin and her sister, I coined the new catch phrase of ‘Good Gourd!’. Yes, it is a combination of Good Lord and Good God – both of which would have been the intended phrase to come out of my mouth – alas it was not to be and the girls were doubled over in a fit of giggles because I said ‘Good Gourd’ instead. I’ll consider it a burst of inspired creativity and stick with it.

While in the Lone Star State, I made the conscious choice to begin journaling again. I bought a beautiful leather-bound journal and have every intention to begin writing in it this weekend, when I will also be doing lots of other responsible and important things (like cleaning my room; doing laundry; packing my summer clothes; and packing up all my Christmas presents for shipping.) I have discovered that while it is very organized to have all of my presents purchased and wrapped – it is quite another thing to not get them sent out in a timely manner, resulting in everyone thinking you never purchased them in the first place. Procrastination is an evil, evil thing. I refuse to give in to its seductive powers.

Speaking of seductive ways . . . NBF is quite handsome and deserves a moment of silent adoration *pause*. Now, I can continue with my original thought, which is that I have one urgent requirement and am hoping that someone will be able to assist me:

I need the use of a pick-up truck in the VERY near future. This weekend would be best so that I can take advantage of the warm weather and move my belongings from my very expensive, old storage unit to my new, far less expensive storage garage. Help me, Obi-Wan Pick-up Truck Owner; you're my only hope.’

PERSONAL NOTE: Thanks again for showing tough love and making me get rid of those atrocities.

Good luck to Joanna Cargill and all of the other Breast Cancer 3-Day Walkers embarking on their 60 mile journey this Friday in Dallas/Fort Worth!

28 October 2009

I Think I Love You

current mood: nauseated

When these pillars get pulled down
It will be you who wears the crown
And I'll owe everything to you
How much pain has cracked your soul?
How much love would make you whole?
You're my guiding lightning strike
~ “I Belong to You” by Muse

This past weekend, I welcomed Lucius Veras into my world. He is a beautiful 2010 Honda Civic; Polished Metal in color; and so beautiful. I have out over a hundred miles on him this week and every one was special in its own way. Yes, I am prone to exaggeration – still, it’s a damn fine car. When I went to pick him up from the dealer [O’Daniel Honda plug here], I was able to see Joe Cool and drink yummy cappuccino from their cappuccino machine. It was a dream come true. Also, while sitting in the showroom waiting for Joe Cool to return with some paperwork, I enthusiastically assisted another sales guy sell a Honda Fit. They should ditch that Honda mascot and just send out pictures of me and Lucius.

Today, Joe Cool called me to check on the car and see how I liked him. As I noted to him when he said, ‘hello’, it is quite unusual for someone to hear her car salesman’s voice and instantly know who it is. We both found that rather amusing. I have decided that it would be in my best interest to drive over to Superiority Complex Honda – and share with their General Manager that due to their slimy, non-listening sales guy, O’Daniel sold not 1, but 2, BRAND NEW Honda Civics to the same person in a 16 month period of time. AND, both times, I paid cash (well, financed through someone else) meaning that there was no risk to Honda regarding late payments or default. That dumb, dumb man – ‘SS Rob’. If only he would have listened when I “told him I was looking for a 4 door Honda Civic, a 2008 or 2007, NOT Silver or White. I also specified I wanted a standard transmission; not an automatic.” Alas, thanks to him, I am well on my way to putting Joe Cool’s kids through college. See 'Ridin' in my 5.0' for details of my adventures purchasing Marcus Aurelius!

I am looking forward to being in Fort Worth for Halloween weekend. Granted, I am disappointed that I am not going to Voodoo Fest in New Orleans (and I am sure y’all are sad you won’t get to read any commentary on this year’s bands) with Roly-Poly Nicoly and Ali-Son. Instead, I get to go trick-or-treating with the twins AND meet THREE new babies that have been born since June. Next year, I can go to New Orleans.

For those of you who may be concerned as to the well-being of Lucius Veras while I am out of town – he is parked in a secret location, where would-be thieves will have to pass through laser beams and wild beasts to get to him. Even Homeland Security doesn’t know where he is being hidden. Um . . . now that I mentioned ‘Homeland Security’ will this blog be monitored? If I also use words like ‘Gitmo’; ‘WMDs’, and international espionage, perhaps I can pick up a few more readers. Maybe the Obama Family can read my words aloud before watching movies in the White House movie theatre.

Last thought before I go. . . the new 3OH!3 song, “Starstruck” makes me wish I knew how to whistle. “Nice Legs! Daisy Dukes! Makes a man go *silence*” It just isn’t the same without the whistle! Bloody hell.

PERSONAL NOTE: I like you.

PUBLIC NOTE: Come to the Happy Hour at Flip’s on Friday afternoon in Fort Worth, right off Western Center and I35-W. Starts at 5 or so.

: Um, bad plan. You may want to think that one over, my friend.

22 October 2009

Hit and Miss

Current Mood: melancholy

He's connected to the sounds
And he's got pictures on the wall
Of all the girls he's loved before
And she knows all his favorite songs
~ “Flavor of the Weak” by American Hi Fi

I am dating someone. He goes by the pseudonym, ‘NBF’ (non-boyfriend). Our last 3 dates were very different fromone another:
The Holland Lecture Series ‘Dr. James K. Galbraith: The Great Crisis and the Predator State’ – a liberal-leaning economist who is possibly riding the coattails of his famous economist father. He talked about strawberry patches and blueberries (a reference to blue and red states). The lecture was interesting; the brownies made my tummy hurt.

Dinner at the Cheesecake Factory then a movie, ‘Law Abiding Citizen’, starring Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx. The concept was thrilling – but the execution and conclusion were lacking. Makes me wonder if Butler will ever be able to carry a film without another big name to back him up.

Movie – Zombieland. It was excellent. I highly recommend it. It’s a fun, yet somewhat grotesque romp. The dialogue is clever and the acting is quite inspiring. I laughed aloud and turned my head in disgust. Plus who doesn’t LOVE zombie movies? As an added bonus, there are no vampires. Great Date flick!
Recently, I introduced NBF to ‘Missed Connections’ on Craigslist. It is a place where people post messages to ‘missed connections’ such as the barista at the Starbucks counter or the guy who made eye contact with on the subway. I love the idea of having a missed connection, then finding the person again – perhaps spurring destiny toward a happier existence. The idea is romantic and fun. The reality, however, is generally much more pathetic. I used to date a guy who was some girl’s ‘missed connection’. They had chatted at the bus stop. She wanted to see him again. Granted, it is less creepy than stalking the bus stop for him. And, had he not been dating me at the time, perhaps he would have contacted her and they could have lived happily ever after. I could be the cause for destroying the opportunity of a lifetime. Maybe.

If you read through them, however, it becomes all too apparent that people are reaching at straws, in hopes that they can connect with someone, anyone. Sometimes, the descriptions are so vague that one has to wonder if there really was an interaction at all. In other situations, the messages are so specific that one is tempted to go to the place with a printout of the message to give the barista a little nudge in the right direction. Either way, I am curious as to whether or not these people ever connect.

Has our world truly devolved into a place where we cannot attempt to connect in person? Why are people so scared of rejection that they must go to an online site and post something that will most likely never be seen by the person in question? Next time, walk up to that counter and say, ‘hi.’ Introduce yourself. I have several friends who I never would have known had I just posted a ‘missed connection’ instead of introducing myself and been willing to talk to a perfect stranger.

I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone today and make a connection – it could change everything.

PERSONAL NOTE: Thank you for not being a ‘missed connection’

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: The late night-chats are taking their toll.

to all my peeps in Fort Worth whom I will see in one week!

07 October 2009

9, 8, 7, 6 5 4, 3, 2, 1, fun

current mood: apprehensive

This used to be a funhouse
But now it's full of evil clowns
It's time to start the countdown
I'm gonna burn it down down down
I'm gonna burn it down
~ “Funhouse” by Pink

I do have green eyes; however, I hold no jealous tendencies. Jealousy indicates resentment toward others for what they have, are, or will be. My heart cannot even sustain anger in the worst of situations. There is no possibility that I would be able to sustain a tangible amount of envy for anyone or anything. This doesn’t make me noble; I assure you. Instead, it gives evidence that my claims of emotional detachment have merit. I have always suspected that I have anti-social tendencies bubbling under the surface of normality. There are days where I am fairly confident that I could survive without human contact for far longer than most of society. Granted, I have specific people in my life that would be severely missed and possibly longed for – but, in the end, I’d adapt.

The beginning of ‘Zombieland’ started churning these thoughts in my brain. Fortunately for me, there are no zombies around who could actually eat my brain until these thoughts stop eating away at me.

Several friends have shared their unsolicited opinions lately, regarding my willingness to love someone who doesn’t love me back. This is not a new trait that I picked up in my post-divorce world. It’s something that I have done for as far back as I remember. I am an expert, it seems, at giving away emotion – but pretty terrible at receiving it. In fact, I remember a conversation with Husband #1 where he stated that he had finally fallen in love with me and that he wished I were willing to accept that love. Granted, there had been a lot of ‘bridge wash-outs’ prior to that conversation which made divorce inevitable. Yet, the conversation has been stuck in my memory since then.

I let people love me. Really, I do. I put forth great effort to not throw emotions back at people – to respect their feelings. With the exception of the twins, however, I don’t tend to embrace one’s emotional connection with me. I try. Yoda taught us: ‘Do, or do not. There is no try.’ Successfully navigating the precarious waters of emotional exchange is difficult at best. Most days, I am just pleased when I haven’t offended anyone with my lack of social awareness.

Part of the issue is that I can completely shut off any sense of connection or emotion with someone. If they upset me in any way – I will just turn off any emotions toward that person. It allows me the luxury of detachment. Complete apathy has its advantages. Some people tell me that it’s unhealthy to shut them down like that. One ex-boyfriend in particular used to get very frustrated with me because I would disengage from conflict – from everything really, to avoid a confrontation or to show any emotion beyond ‘everything is great’.

Sometimes, I catch myself doing the same thing with NBF. When I realize what is happening, I put a halt to it. My friendship with him is too important to ‘hide my truth’, even if it creates conflict. I think that may be one of the reasons we don’t spend all of our spare time together. I can be difficult. Hard to believe, I know . . . but it is true. Too much ‘Girl Genius’ would wear the Dalai Lama’s patience thin. In small doses, however, I am AMAZING!

PRIVATE NOTE: 12 days until your baby girl will be here.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Should we throw a Happy Hour while I am in Fort Worth?

01 October 2009

I Used to Roll the Dice

current mood: relieved

Chances are we'll find two destinations
Chances run away from me
Still chances are more than expectations
And possibilities
~ “Chances” by Five for Fighting

Yesterday I built some garage shelves. They were not overly complicated; but, they did take me a while to build. I had built three of the four shelves when NBF arrived. He walked in the garage and startled me (I was listening to my iPod). I was barefoot; sweating; and my hair was falling out of the clip. He volunteered to help me finish the final shelf. I was in a hurry and gratefully accepted his offer.

This is where the Mars/Venus differences kicked in. For some reason, any time a male volunteers to help a female do something ‘boyish’, such as building shelves, he has to take over the project. NBF is definitely male and he behaved precisely how I expected. I became the assistant shelf-builder while he attempted to use that ‘Y’ chromosome to his advantage. He even went as far as to say, ‘Babe, you should have waited and I could have helped you build all of them.’

Now I completely understand that he was being sweet. I took it as he intended and appreciated his thoughtfulness and willingness to give up his time to build shelves with me. Still, did he not see the 3 shelves I had already built? They were standing there; quite sturdy I may add, in the back of the garage. I will acknowledge that it definitely went faster with two people – but sometimes, it would be nice to have a guy look at what was done while he wasn’t present and be amazed!

On the other hand, I like it when a man wants to take care of things for me. Hell, I don’t like to open doors on my own – so a guy offering to build furniture that he won’t even be using is spectacular. I believe the key to pushing through the Venus/Mars smokescreen is to assume positive intent.

Moving to a new topic, my insurance company has agreed to pay for my stolen car. They mailed a check to my lien holder today. This means that by the time my new car arrives, the old one will be paid off. I have already secured a new car loan, which is a good thing – though I wish that I could have just used the old loan, as the terms were a little better. Oh well. At least it is being handled. Beggars cannot be choosers; and I am definitely a beggar without a car.

Now, a quick shout-out for Joe Cool, everyone’s favourite Honda salesman:
Joe Mancuso @ O'Daniel Honda is the only car salesman from whom I will ever buy another car!

In August 2008, I bought a brand new Honda Civic from Joe. Not only did I get a great deal; but he has kept in touch with me, verifying that I am happy with the car, etc. I also use the O'Daniel Service Department, who are fantastic and professional.

Due to a car thief with bad driving skills, I am now back in the market for a new car, and Joe has been amazing in helping me find the exact car I want. I could not ask for better service. While I was not in the car when it crashed into a reinforcement pole; based on the damage done to the vehicle, and the fact that the thief walked away from the scene never to be heard from again, it appears that Honda builds a pretty safe car!

Buy a Honda from O'Daniel Honda -- ask for Joe Mancuso -- you will be so happy that you did!

(402) 393-7801
78th & Dodge, Omaha, NE 68114

or visit them online at: www.odanielhonda.com

PERSONAL NOTE: Hope you did great on your job interview!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: I miss you so very much!

30 September 2009

Greatest Hits . . . Really?

current mood: stagnant

Have you ever been ‘Rick Rolled’? If you haven’t, then you need to be; if for no other reason than to watch Rick Astley dance around in a trench coat, looking like a child predator, and singing how he’s ‘never gonna give you up’ or ‘let you down’. It isn’t very often that we are given such guarantees in life. I admit that the song is catchy and that back ‘in the day’, I danced to that song. In fact, I blame that song for my lack of dancing skills. I really thought that stepping back and forth while snapping my fingers was ‘dancing’ – and if I wanted to really spice things up, I’d hook my thumbs in my waistbands and do the ‘New Kids Dance’. You can laugh, but we’ve all done it. In fact, I am going to call someone out right here: Brandon, you wore the parachute pants and couldn’t ‘touch this’ – while sporting the MacGyver haircut. I was there. I remember.

Anyway, back Rick Astley – he has a Greatest Hits album with 17 tracks. I have only heard 2 songs on the entire album; and one of them I never realized was a “hit”. The other 15 of his ‘greatest hits’ are not ‘hits’ at all. They are just songs he sang – songs that no one in the Western World has heard. How in the world did a record company green-light this album? Seriously!

This discovery got me thinking that there must be other ‘Greatest Hits’ compilations available from people who don’t qualify. I had to search for them – to see if I can discover the secret which is a ‘Greatest Hits’ record!

The Best of Vanilla Ice
A reviewer on Amazon said it best: "If you decide to buy this CD, wait patiently by the mail box till it arrives. Upon arrival, quickly open the box, then pull the security tape from the jewel case. Open the jewel case and place the CD in one hand. Break the CD in half, then slit your wrists with the remaining shards. As you begin to die look at your reflection in the mirror-like surface of the broken CD, and ask your self what you were thinking when you ordered this CD!"
The Best of Shaquille O’Neal

Um, this is actually a music album. There are no basketball highlight reels. This CD confused me from the very first track, titled, “I’m Outstanding”. Confident? Yes! Musically Inclined? No! Plus he has one song listed twice. Is that even fair?

A Collection of Roxette Hits: Their 20 Greatest Songs

The only thing I can say for this band is that the lead singer sounds American when she sings – but cannot speak a lick of English in an interview. Oh, and I never understood exactly what “The Look” was.

UB40 Greatest Hits

This one has 21 tracks. I have heard of 3. Several others are remakes of other people’s greatest hits, which I find rather amusing.

Among others, there are also Greatest Hits albums from Offspring, Nelson, Aaron Carter, Oasis, NSYNC, Incubus, Staind, and Hillary Duff. Dear Lord . . . Aaron Carter is like 12 and Offspring is known for ‘Pretty Fly (for a white guy)’. Are these the musical legacies the music industry wants to leave to future generations? Never fear – Madonna will release her 4th greatest hits album this fall – because she is still definitely RELEVANT. I guess she is trying to release one hit record for every kid she can adopt. Good thing Angelina cannot sing.

Personal Note: Where is a broken CD when I desperately need one?

23 September 2009

Honour in Death

current mood: sad

So the lights are flashing my mind is spinning
I feel like it is always the beginning
Of another rhyme I'm rapping M.C.'ing I rock
You ain't nothing but a car thief who must be stopped
~ “Car Thief” by Beastie Boys

I have a car – kind of. That is, I used to have a car. His name was Marcus Aurelius, and a more beautiful car has never been. When I am sad, I like to sit in the front seat - with my bare feet on the dash – and just breathe. Marcus is a 2008 Honda Civic 5-speed; gun-metal grey; 4-doors; and a dash light panel that reminds everyone of an airplane. I even had his windows tinted. I washed him once a week; had him mini-detailed on a monthly basis; and fully detailed by the dealer every 6 months. Marcus Aurelius brought me joy.

Well, for those of you who haven’t yet heard; Marcus is no longer with us. While I was not sinning in Las Vegas; someone took it upon themselves to break into and steal my beloved car. As if that were not enough – the driver and/or passenger decided that playing Rap Music would be the most logical entertainment choice – VERY LOUD RAP MUSIC. How do I know this, you wonder . . . well, you see, when they left the scene of the CRASH – they left him running.

Unfortunately, just because the Honda engine still functioned does not mean that the vehicle can be driven. And UNFORTUNATELY in this case; Hondas are damn safe cars. So the driver, passenger, and side curtain airbags were fully deployed to cushion the thieves’ impact. Instead of blood, there is glass and airbag dust throughout my car. The police suspect that the driver was either not an experienced 5-speed user OR the steering column locked up for some reason – which is why instead of turning at the T-intersection, the car planted itself face first into a reinforcement post for an industrial fence.

I have my own theory. I think Marcus took it upon himself to try to kill himself and the mother f’ers who were daring to unlawfully play rap music on his sound system. While it is still being decided whether or not he is reparable – according to the Omaha AND Bellevue Police Departments, ‘That car is never going to be driven again!’ The insurance company is taking a look at him today to verify the assessment.

There are no leads. No fingerprints. The case is not being pursued due to lack of evidence. I tip my hat to all of the officers who worked on my case; including the two that I spoke with on the phone while I was still in Vegas. I want to thank them for their diligence – which included waking my parents at 4:30am; waking NBF at 5am; and of course, waking me several times, since I was in the Pacific Time Zone and elected to fall back asleep in misery and exhaustion after each phone call – since it was still pre-dawn.

That being said, I have already been to O’Daniel Honda and paid a visit to ‘Joe Cool’ who is ready to put a 2010 Honda Civic – exactly like Marcus, except a different shade of grey – ON ORDER. The 2008 color has been discontinued and no 2009 models are available with my demanded specifications. His sales manager attempted to entice me with special financing on a car in a different color and with an automatic transmission – I less-than-politely declined. Marcus Aurelius will be reincarnated, either through a rebuild or in a newer model.

All sympathy cards, memorials, flowers, and non-tax-deductible donations can be mailed to me: PO BOX 104, Boys Town, NE 68010.

Oh, and if I find the thieves, I will personally kick them in their face!!!!

15 September 2009

Now I Tell You Openly

current mood: anticipatory

I've got a way of knowing
When something is right
I feel like I must have known you in another life
'Cause I felt this deep connection
When you looked in my eyes
(I can't breathe)
No, I can't wait to see you again
~ ‘See You Again’ by Miley Cyrus

This past weekend was quite mild. NBF and I went to the Kimmel Apple Orchard in Nebraska City. We had so much fun picking apples and pears. They happen to have wine tasting there; and we happened to partake in that classy activity. The wines were interesting. There was even one that tasted like cherry pie. The apple beer, however, was not a tasty treat. So, if you visit the orchards, skip the beer.

While there, we shared a light lunch at one of the public tables inside the store. A family sat down next to us. There were two young boys, approximately 7 and 10 in ages, if I were to guestimate. Their grandma and grandpa were sitting with them. The mom dropped off a box of a dozen apple-cinnamon donuts. Only the older boy grabbed a donut. He was silent, except for his quiet chewing. I smiled at him and said, ‘are you going to eat all those donuts by yourself?’. His expression went from curious to annoyed in a split second. He turned his face away from me and said to no one in particular, ‘The strange lady is talking to me.’ I think the only people who actually heard him were NBF and me. I turned bright pink and started laughing. Every time I made eye-contact with NBF he would start laughing as well. We took the hint and began gathering our belongings and trash. The mom walked back to the table with more food and said, ‘Are we chasing you away?’. We just started laughing again and I assured her that it was just time for us to go. Then the older boy, who we believe, based on his mannerisms and behaviour, that he may be mildly autistic, said, ‘They are laughing at us.’ She reassured him that we were actually laughing WITH them and he again went expressionless and continued eating his donut.

On the drive home, we were still laughing at the kid’s comment. It was a good reminder that I shouldn’t talk to strangers – because they are just as scared of me as I am of them.

Last night, shortly before my bedtime, I had an incredible craving for ice cream. Thus far, I have been doing VERY well with the healthy eating concept – and besides that second day when I was ready to steal candy from the next child who walked within my line of sight. I knew that the only remedy for this craving was fruit – and of course, all the damn pears and apples we had picked were over at NBF’s. I texted and told him that I wanted my fruit. He said I was welcome to stop in and get it on my way to work if I wanted, as he lives only a few minutes from my work and almost 30 minutes from my house. That wasn’t good enough, damnit. I live a mile from Dairy Queen. I responded that the morning was not going to work and that I was just going to come by. . . I then got in my car and drove all the way to Bellevue. I ran up the three flights of stairs to NBF’s apartment and knocked on the door. He was shocked to see me. So was the girl . . . just kidding, there was no girl. He really was surprised though because he didn’t think I was actually going to drive 30 minutes to get a damn pear. In a way he was right – *blush*. Still, when I finally left to go home, I had a bag of fruit in my possession. Ice cream disaster avoided.

In 48 hours I will be drinking on the Las Vegas strip. Ain’t life grand?!?!

SHOUT OUT: Happy birthday, Henry Charles Albert David, Prince of Wales (aka Prince Harry).

PERSONAL NOTE: You are an amazing programmer!

11 September 2009

smitten with an amazing man

current mood: determined

My Momma told me don't lose you
'cause the best luck I had was you
And I know one thing, that I love you
~ ‘Say Hey’ by Michael Franti and Spearhead

I do not make a habit of writing in specifics or identifying the people about which I write. Granted, using logic, many people have speculated as to the identities of my anonymous sources, etc. Sometimes the nicknames are too obvious to really do anything besides avoid Google search bringing up the blog entry should someone be ‘researching’ gossip info. Some nicknames are harder to identify, either because I dislike the person and don’t want them to know I am writing about their stupidity (i.e. ‘soccer boy’ who used to sit next to SCG before leaving the company); their narcissism (i.e. ‘non-kisser’), intensity (i.e. ‘nazi coach’ whom I actually adore); or due to a secret crush (i.e. ‘Becks’). I have even combined people into one personality for total anonymity. It’s creative licensing and since I do not claim that what I write is ‘just the facts’ I feel that I am free to take these liberties.

Next week ‘Kabie’ and I are going to Las Vegas, NV, where we will most likely engage in public drunkenness and debauchery. It is hard to believe that it’s been almost a year since our last visit to Sin City! Before this little holiday. However, I will be engaging in some clean, wholesome fun. Non-boyfriend (NBF) and I are going to Nebraska City to visit an apple orchard and pick our own apples. Mini road trips are great fun – and I know that we will have an amazing time. Plus I’ll get some yummy fruit to snack on. I am back on an ‘eat healthy’ kick and intend on maintaining this new habit for at least the next month. Hopefully by that point, I will no longer have to work so hard at it.

NBF is by biggest supporter and inspiration when it comes to getting healthier. He works out and eats with a level of discipline that I am doing my best to emulate (after making minor modifications which prevent me from having to eat cottage cheese or foods I cannot pronounce). I openly acknowledge that his body reflects his discipline, as it is 24 year old perfection. For myself, I am not aiming for perfection – instead I will be ecstatic when I reach 33 year old ’surprisingly fit’. I have a plan which includes strength training, healthier eating choices, and running hills three times a week with NBF. ‘Mi Madre’ and ‘Papa’ are also making healthier exercise and food decisions. Accountability is in place – now for follow-through!

PERSONAL NOTE: Next week we’re going to ‘Party like a Rockstar’ or like a ‘DJ’.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: I love you too much to ever actually consider marrying you.

09 September 2009

Dog Days and Beirut Nights

Current mood: cheerful

Actions speak louder than words
You gotta show us something
My heart is missing some pieces
I need this puzzle put together again
~ ‘Damaged’ by Danity Kane

Due to the new time limits on Pandora, I am no longer able to listen to it all day, every day, at work. With only 40 hours to use throughout the entire month, I have been forced to search for new entertainment avenues. Luckily, my skills with the inter webs are conducive for precisely this type of challenge. Thanks to the masterminds at windowsmedia.com, I have a full range of free streaming radio stations in which to partake. Users can search by category or just choose one of the ‘Editors’ Picks’. I found myself tempted by the latter and on a whim selected ‘Beirut Nights’. I am not all that familiar with the hoppin’ night life of the inhabitants of Beirut, Lebanon. Apparently, based on this particular radio station, they are a hot and sassy bunch. Not only do I get to hear some great music – but I am learning Arabic (kind of). Unfortunately, I have absolutely no idea what I am actually listening to.

*Abrupt Transition to a New Topic*

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about Elizabeth (aka Ebie). Her story is a tumultuous one. I wanted a pug puppy. We had contacted a reputable breeder and were ready to purchase one when a coworker mentioned that the shelter where she volunteered had just picked up a pug mix. Here is what she told us:

- It’s an adult female
- Suspected puppy mill escapee
- Has heartworm and needs to be spayed
- The shelter will put her down in the next few days if a family cannot be found for her

The twins and I went that evening to the shelter to meet the sick dog. When we arrived, there was this way too skinny, black brindle colored creature. She was very energetic for something so sick, which should have been my first warning that she would end up being a spaz! The lady at the shelter explained that if we agreed to adopt her, the shelter would pay for the heartworm treatment. Then, if she survived the treatment, which is comparable to chemotherapy, the shelter would pay for the spay as well.

The kids loved her; but I wasn’t sure that taking on a sick dog, then having her house confined for an additional couple of months after the treatments would be feasible. As we were leaving, I let the woman know I’d call her in the morning. Almost as an afterthought, she added, ‘One more thing, she needs to be in a yard with a privacy fence, since she can climb chain link.’ Wonderful!

Obviously, we adopted her and she survived the treatment. Then for two months she was in her kennel or in my lap at least 23 hours a day. She was not permitted to run around or do anything strenuous for fear her heart would give out. Time passed, and before I knew it, she was escaping our yard on a regular basis, either by climbing the 4 foot chain link fence (which we witnessed and videotaped) or by digging a hole under the fence (which we routinely filled in). When she bolted from the yard, she ran really fast – like she had a very important place to be. I’d yell, ‘Elizabeth’ and she’d stop in mid-sprint, turn around, and come running back as fast as she took off. She’d jump into my arms as if she had been gone for days.

Things haven’t changed much in the past 6 years. She still loves to dig holes under the fence. She understands very basic commands, ‘sit’, ‘bed’, ‘crate’, ‘to me’. Whether she will obey those commands is left up to her. She has to sleep with a human or else she will whine and yelp. She hates thunder storms and tries to scare the lightning away with incessant barking. She doesn’t like the dark. She will eat pretty much anything – which has caused some emergency vet issues. She is fearless against other dogs – even when they are bigger than her (and most are). She loves people, is great with children, and will sit in your lap if it is available, regardless of how many times she is pushed down.

Recent DNA tests have revealed that she does indeed have some pug genes; but is primarily a Boston terrier. There is no dog I have ever known that is as loyal and loving as Elizabeth. She may be a pain in the ass and extremely hyperactive – but she can be counted on to make her ‘family’ feel needed and cherished. Plus, in the winter, she is ultra-warm and will lay on my cold feet. I am so blessed to have found such a wonderful 4-legged companion. I hope that everyone feels this way about their own fur-babies.

PERSONAL NOTE: I am so excited for Vegas!!! We will have a blast!


04 September 2009

And She Ain’t Even Hot!

Current mood: beautiful

At first I was sad
At first I was crying
And then I got mad
And I started buying
Feels good, swiping your visa
Louis, Gucci, flight to Ibiza
I left you a note
Letting you know you're broke
~ “Who’s Got Your Money?” by Tina Parol

Last night, was filled with adventures, dangerous feats, wrong turns, and sweaty bodies! It was Ring Wars V – Muay Thai Kickboxing at Septemberfest! Before we headed to the Qwest Center for our ringside table seats, we met at Hiro for Happy Hour. Woo hoo for Hiro Happy Hour!

Ay 6:30, ‘FightMom’ and I left for the fights. We had to pay $6.00 for parking which is ridiculous – but we did get a rockstar space – so the sting of paying was lessened by the great location. Walking toward the fight tent, we made a quick stop at the still-clean porta potties. I hate them! We doused on the hand sanitizer after – ewwwww! At the Will Call table, we were given wristbands for alcohol and VIP wrist bands for our table seats. Unfortunately, they selected the ditziest blonde to lead us to our table. She walked us all around the ring; then looked at me and said, “Um, I don’t see your name on any of the tables.” Then silence.

She was waiting for me to say something – but I don’t know what I was supposed to say. Finally, after a couple of minutes of her staring at us, she said, “I guess you can wait here while I go ask someone.”

So, we stood there, and waited and waited until someone who had at least 60 more IQ points than this girl came over and showed us to our table – which was less than 5 feet from where we were standing. Brilliant! Our tablemates were an eclectic assortment of two Hawaiian fighters, an old man and his 10 year old grand son, and some people who never even looked at us.

The kid was an odd duck. First off, he will definitely need braces and I am rather curious as to why he doesn’t have them yet. He had on a long sleeve striped polo that looked like it came from a closet stuck in 1982. Over that, he had on a white fighting T-shirt that his grandpa must have bought him at the fights. He had input on anything and everything ‘FightMom’ and I discussed. The only contribution from grandpa was to buy the kid another effin’ Mountain Dew! Good Lord! Before long, it became apparent that the little man may have developed a slight crush on yours truly. He would just stare at me and smile when I saw him staring. ‘FightMom’ found this to be hilarious-o! I was less than amused.

Luckily, an incredible looking photographer in a hat caught my attention. He looked to be around 23 or 24, great eyes, nice body -- and ‘FightMom’ agreed. Then without notice, he took off his hat and we both cringed. By removing the baseball cap, he went from ‘Fine’ to ‘forty’, with a shaved buzz cut and a seriously receding hairline. Seriously, removing the hat ages him 15 years. Then I was no longer remotely interested – until later, when we saw him again, with the hat on. And wow, he was Hot again! This went on most the night and all I could do was hiss “Deceiver” in his direction and wonder what gypsy curse did this to him!

After one of the title fights, the annoying grandson asked me if I had a pen he could borrow to get an autograph from one of the fighters. I have an office supply store in my purse – so I handed him a black sharpie and wished him luck. He came back a short while later and returned my sharpie. After the next fight, he looked right at me and said, “Hey, do you still happen to have that marker on you?” Note, I hadn’t moved from my location. The Sharpie did not magically walk away. I told him just to hang onto it until it was time to go. He looked quite pleased with himself. It was at this point that ‘FightMom’ called him my “MBF” (mini boyfriend). I almost challenged her to a fight in the ring – but as the little kid observed, if she and I fought, she would probably win because she looked stronger (though he did acknowledge that I looked more focused). Ha ha ha ha

The fights rocked! And I cheered like a die-hard fan! It was great fun! Cannot wait until Ring Wars VI.

You are the best looking man I have ever met – even when you take your hat off.


31 August 2009

Lost My Faith in My Darkest Day

current mood: irritable

She got the call today, one out of the grey
And when the smoke cleared, it took her breath away
She said she didn’t believe 'it could happen to me'
I guess we're all one phone call from our knees
We're gonna get there soon
~ “Closer to Love” by Mat Kearney

I have been up all night coughing. I have some sort of bronchial irritant. I refuse to acknowledge that it could be anything germ-related, as I am not in a position to be sick. I have too much work and not enough hours in the day to allow my body time for recovery. Therefore, I am drowning my cough in suppressants. All will be well. I checked the CDC website and my symptoms do not mirror H1N1. So those of you ready to accuse me of having “swine flu” please keep your comments to yourself. First off, I refuse to get any infections which utilize the name of an animal in their title. That means no Mad Cow, no Swine Flue, and no Monkey Ebola Virus. I also refuse to have Cat Scratch fever or Avian flu.

Such refusals have kept me quite healthy throughout the years.

Unfortunately, peeps, that’s all I have for today! Such a disappointment!

PERSONAL NOTE: Nicely done on your recent “editing” skills. Some people do not deserve to know what is going on with you!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Thank you for the serial killer DVDs. :)

27 August 2009

Y – O – Y – O – Y

current mood: stressed

Don't push me cause i'm close to the edge
I'm trying not to lose my head
Sometime I sit alone
And look deep into my soul
And I’m starin’ down at something
That's very out of control
~ “The Stress Factor” by Andre Nickatina

I am a person who generally thrives on stress. I enjoy being pushed to the limit. It serves as encouragement and motivation. Unfortunately, the line between “the edge” and “falling into oblivion” is growing thinner by the day. I am by no means a martyr and I certainly have an easier life than many people I know. Still, I do work 2 jobs, volunteer, and am applying to law School. If anyone had truly wanted to know what I wanted for my birthday – it would have been “someone to clean my room and organize my stuff” or “someone to help me move all my belongings from one storage unit to my new storage unit”. My work week is filled with “WORK” and my weekends are spent trying to catch up on sleep that I didn’t get during the week. I even had to hire maids to come in and clean the “common” rooms in the house because I just didn’t have time to do it.

On my birthday, I spent time with NBF, which was nice. I dragged him to The Loft (Ann Taylor) so that I could look at clearance items. I bought a cute short-sleeve cardigan for 10 bucks. I have worn it three times this week. Today, I finally noticed the “M” sticker that was stuck to it, indicating ‘medium’. Nice! Who doesn’t love walking around with tags still stuck to my clothes??

I have actually accomplished some things this week, however, besides work. I have formally requested all of my transcripts for my law School applications, as well as my LORs. I still need to write my Personal Letter and begin studying to re-take the LSAT in December. There is no way I have the ‘bandwidth’ to attempt the September LSAT. Thankfully, NBF is going to help me study – which is a huge plus!

This weekend I intend on mailing ‘new baby’ presents to the Merlos and the Dalys, as well as wrap the baby present I bought for the Duartes. I also am moving all of my belongings from one storage unit to another – which includes towing a UHAUL trailer. I have no idea how to tow a trailer – so this should be an interesting event. Anyone want to help me? I just sent a text request to 8 people. I hope one of you say ‘YES’.

On a separate topic, my tummy aches. I hate it when my stomach hurts. Yuckers!

PERSONAL NOTE: Vegas in 3 weeks!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: People are crazy!

26 August 2009

The Mix Tape

current mood: insatiable

Though I do wish you’d come over
But I'm warning you if you do
I'd be lying if I said I didn't have designs on you
I'd be lying if I said I didn't have designs on you
~ “Designs on You” by the Old 97s

The other day someone posted a facebook blurb regarding the lost art of the mix tape. While it is true that making someone a Cd now has become a high tech process, with a gorgeous, pristine end-product, there is something to be said about the time and thought which went into creating a mixetape for someone. The process was painstakingly meticulous.
Step 1: Lay all cassette tapes out on the floor so that the appropriate songs are within reach.
Step 2: Make a list of the songs so that an estimate can be made as to whether or not they will all fit on the cassette tape.
Step 3: Verify that each cassette tape is cued to the correct song.
Step 4: Record an audio opening that introduces the music (very similar to being your own DJ)
Step 5: Start the blank tape recording then hit ‘Play’ on the first tape.
Step 6: Listen to the song in its entirety (because everyone knows that high-speed dubbing gives the mixed tape a high pitched tone in the background which ruins the quality).
Step 7: When the song is over, hot Pause on the recording side and eject the original tape.
Step 8: Insert next cassette tape to record from.
Step 9: Repeat these steps until one side of the mix tape is full. If the last song did not record in its entirety, rewind to the beginning of that song on the mix tape and replace partial song with more audio chat, telling the person how great they are, etc.
Step 10: Flip mix tape and begin again on Side 2/B.
Once the mix tape is recorded, grab another blank tape and record the entire mix tape for your personal use; because it’s a damn good mix.

Grab a pen and write down each song and artist for the Cassette insert. Draw pretty pictures or add stickers, etc, for decoration purposes.

There you have it, the perfect gift for your BFF; BF; GF; even a non-boyfriend, if you happen to have one of those instead.

Making a CD Mix on the computer comes nowhere close to the purity of a true ‘mix tape’. Clicking and dragging music, followed by pressing “record CD’, does not even touch the emotional investment of creating a mix tape.

I will admit that there are exceptions to this generalization. There are some people who invest a ton of time and energy into making a CD for someone. They record their own voice, add fun little excerpts between songs, and design the inserts themselves. Those people are exempt from feeling the sting of this commentary.

People who should feel the sting even more intensely, however, are those who just make an iTunes playlist for someone and throw it on a flashdrive or a zip file for someone else’s use. Those people suck!

PERSONAL NOTE: Thank you for the birthday wishes!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: We should get together. Soon.

20 August 2009

Lay Down Your Arms; Gather Your Friends

When you feel the world is crashing all around your feet,
come running headlong into my arms,
breathless. I’ll never judge you,
I can only love you.
Come now, running headlong
into my arms, breathless
~ “Breathless” by Better than Ezra

verb (used with object)
1. to look forward to; regard as likely to happen; anticipate the occurrence or the coming of: I expect to read it. I expect him later. She expects that they will come.
2. to look for with reason or justification: We expect obedience.
3. Informal. to suppose or surmise; guess: I expect that you are tired from the trip.

In Noun form, the word most recognized would be ‘expectation’. Expectations are dangerous things when they are not agreed upon by all parties involved. We have all seen relationships dissolve due to misaligned expectations. I am not merely referencing romantic relationships. Jobs have been lost due to unstated expectations. Companies have gone bankrupt. Friendships have dissolved. And yes, Marriages have ended. All because no one took the time to formalize their expectations.

When I was going through divorce counseling, we spent a lot of hours discussing and clarifying our unstated expectations. Through these discussions we discovered that all of our expectations differed from one another’s. Some of us even had opposing expectations for a successful marriage. One woman said she had the expectation that her husband should call or text her frequently throughout the day, while he was at work. Another woman said that one of the reasons she and her husband were getting divorced is that he never gave her any ‘away time’. He texted and called her during the work day and it made her feel trapped and harassed. Neither of these women ever asked their respective husbands if it was something he would agree to. In fact, neither one even mentioned that she had this expectation at all.

I was forced to look at my own relationships with family, friends, and my spouse. I realized that half of my disappointment in life was due to unstated expectations not being met. I spent the rest of divorce counseling learning how to clarify and state my expectations so that the other person was cognizant of what I expected and we could both make an informed decision as to whether or not a successful relationship can be accomplished.

I will admit that this process is not always so black and white, as sometimes we don’t know what our expectations are until they are not being met. I have an expectation that men should hold doors for women. I think it is a courtesy that is due to the fairer gender. Consider it old-fashioned or even archaic. I have this expectation every day. While living in Texas, this expectation was met 95% of the time. Even men with their hands full would step ahead of me to hold the door. In Nebraska, I sometimes find myself stopping at a door and waiting to allow the male to ‘catch up’ and open it. It has led to some awkward situations, where we both just stand there looking at the door. These situations cannot be prevented with strangers. I understand that we are going to be disappointed sometimes.

I have an unstated expectation that people won’t run me over with their car or steal my checkbook -- but I don’t HAVE to state those expectations, the law does it for me. One would think that “respectful communication” would be another expectation that should not have to be stated aloud – yet, people are disrespectful all day long to one another. If a person would speak up and say, “My expectation of you is that you will speak to me respectfully. If you cannot meet that expectation, then I will no longer do business with you.” perhaps they wouldn’t feel like a doormat every time they are confronted by a rude customer service agent.

Yesterday, NBF and I sat down and actually discussed the concept of unstated expectations. We both clarified what we expected in our very non-traditional relationship. We acknowledged that one of the reasons we are so non-traditional is because we both have set very clear expectations and agreed to meet each other on them. I know very few dating couples who have done the same. Generally these types of discussions are initiated in relationship counseling prior to a break-up.

Here is a cute example of why acting on unstated expectations is not a good idea. The following situation could have gone much smoother than it did for poor, little Jonathan, Age 10.
Mid afternoon the Mom receives a call on her cell phone from a ‘Sarah’.....calling for Jonathan.

Mom: He's not here, Sarah. Did you want me to have him call you later?”
Sarah: Yes, have him call me at 4:30
Mom: He'll still be at soccer practice; I will let him know you called.
Then, an awkward silence commences. The mom is waiting for the girl to respond.
Sarah: I go to school with Jonathan.
Mom: Right, well, I’ll tell him you called.

When the message is given to Jonathan, he denies any knowledge of how this girl could have possibly obtained the phone number. After 20 minutes of intense interrogation, he admits that he “thinks he actually may have given her his phone number”. which was actually his Mom’s cell phone number. He should have stopped there – but instead he decided this was the opportune time to lobby for a cell phone.

“"Well Mom, I don't HAVE a cell phone so I can't give her MY number"

She none-so-gently reminded her son that they have a HOME phone. She also reviewed his diminishing prospects of ever getting a cell phone.

Just like with Jonathan, Sarah, and J’s mom, there are relationships where expectations cannot or will not be met; but they cannot be severed. Think about all the times your family or your co-workers have not met your expectations. It is a part of life. Still, things go so much smoother if expectations are established and agreed upon. Next time, perhaps Jonathan will let his mother know that he gave her cell phone number out and that he would like her to handle the phone call with decorum. And, I am pretty damn sure that his mom has set the expectation that Jonathan will not be getting a cell phone of his own, any time soon!

SHOUT OUT: to the Merlos who will have baby Izabella tomorrow!

PERSONAL NOTE: Thank you for being honest and open.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Thank you for reading my mind so that even the unstated expectations cannot come between us.

17 August 2009

All I Need Is Just To Hear A Song I Know

Current mood: envious

And you can trust me not to think
And not to sleep around
If you don't expect too much from me
You might not be let down
~ “Hey, Jealousy” by Gin Blossoms

Pragmatic – (adjective) of or pertaining to a practical point of view or practical considerations.
I like to think that I am pragmatic about most aspects of life. I am a strong believer in logic and rational thought; without muddying the waters with emotion. That isn’t to say that I don’t get very emotional and make brash decisions based on emotional stimuli. I am just as guilty as the next person in behaving irrationally due to hurt feelings or fear. Recently, however, I have been doing my best to ignore the emotional impulses and behave according to strict logic.

Unfortunately, my human impulses are sometimes stronger than my logic. Here are some examples:

I love raisins – by themselves. BUT – if they are mixed or cooked in anything I refuse to eat them. In fact, I gag if they slip by unnoticed before I take a bite. Case in point: the other day I ordered fried ice cream at a local Mexican restaurant. I took a few bites and was enjoying the crispy texture of the ‘fried’ coating on the ice cream until a raisin found its way in my mouth. Sure enough, I gagged. Then, using my detective skills, I ascertained that the coating on the ice cream was RAISIN BRAN! WTF!?!?! Who wants raisings in their fried ice cream? My sister found the whole thing funny and did nothing to hide her mirth. So, I left the uneaten ice cream in the bowl and paid my bill, disappointed and a little disgusted. And just this morning, as I was getting granola for my oatmeal, I had to pick out every raisin BEFORE adding it to the bowl. It is an inconvenience at best.

I hate flying. I am well aware that commercial flying is one of the safest means of travel. I understand that turbulence in the sky is just the plane reacting to changes in air flow and air pressure. I realize that it takes an unusual combination of very bad conditions to bring a plane down (minus a flock of birds getting sucked into the engine). Some flights, I am fine, even with the turbulence. Other flights, you’d think I was a first time flyer with no idea how an airplane works. On the way home from Chicago, even after taking 2 anti-anxiety pills, I was lying in my sister’s lap, trying not to scream in panic. It makes no sense and can be quite embarrassing when it happens.

I hate dance music. In fact, it tends to annoy me to the point of anger. Yet, when I drink, I LOVE dance music. I go from a Birkenstock-wearing fan of singer-songwriters to a wanna-be stripper without a pole. I don’t understand how the transformation happens. The problem is, I really cannot dance; which may explain the hatred for music which makes me want to do so. My friend, ‘NYC Princess‘, has suggested that I may just feel more confident when people are throwing dollar bills at me. Maybe when I lose 30 lbs and learn to dance on 4 inch heels, I’ll take that leap of faith. Maybe.

Claustrophobia – (noun) an abnormal fear of being in enclosed or narrow places
I have serious claustrophobia. It stems from reading too many Edgar Allen Poe stories growing up. I also dislike crowds immensely. So, tell me why I can go to concerts, general admission, and wade through a sea of people to be in the front, where I am confined by thousands of bodies and a barricade, all without freaking out in the least bit. Is it the distraction of the music? I truly have no idea. I wish I could project that same feeling of calm when I am on a plane, or in a tight spot.

Lastly, there is very little I love doing more than reading and writing. I love to throw my ideas down on paper. Nothing would make me happier than being able to write for a living. Yet, I don’t even try to get published. I write short stories and anecdotal observations – and cannot bring myself to let anyone read them. I don’t even read them once I have written them. I don’t understand this dichotomy. I am not quite sure what I am so afraid of.

I have shared some of these concerns with a friend of mine, and he encourages me to ignore the fear, step out of my comfort zone, and do what makes me happy. Hell, it worked when I rode a roller coaster for the first time this past January – why shouldn’t it work with other aspects of my life? Perhaps turning 33 next week has me being reflective, as I always imagined that by this point in my life, I’d have a graduate degree in something and would be working and living abroad.

These thoughts make me wonder, ‘Why did I ever get on that return flight when he asked me to stay?’ One decision changed everything. Somewhere, in some other dimension, I wonder if that 19 year old girl made a different choice. . . and is sitting there wondering what would have happened had she gotten on the plane. Logic dictated my actions then . . . perhaps I should have listened to my heart instead.

A lesson learned? Perhaps some day.

SHOUT OUT: Congratulations to Michael and Brooke on their marital vows!!!!

PERSONAL NOTE: You can fake it at work. You can fake it for friends. . . It’s your decision now to give love or to just get out. ~Glen Phillips


14 August 2009

How Did I Turn My Shirt Inside Out?

current mood: ringing ears

'Cause I wanna be the minority
I don't need you, authority
Down with the moral majority
'Cause I wanna be the minority
~ “Minority” by Green Day

I am pretty sure that Billie Joe Armstrong spit on me while singing. Yeah, I was that close. And yeah, I was wearing heels. The crowd was my bith! Hard to believe that in ten days I will be 33 years old. I don’t feel ‘old’ though I do get tired faster than I did when I was 23. And sometimes I say the wrong word while speaking. My brain has these little misfires, similar to the toy crane that grabs the teddy bear when you were aiming for the football. I may mean to say “Watch my purse” when it comes out as “Watch my pizza.” (That one I didn’t actually say . . . but I know someone who did and she knows who she is. LOL

Anyway, off track! I went to the Green Day show last night and it was definitely in my top shows that I have ever, ever seen. Billie Joe Armstrong has more energy than ANY human that has ever existed. The audience ages ranged from 8 to 80. Seriously, I have never seen such a huge age disparity at a show. Moms (my age) had their 8 and 9 year olds on the floor. And these kids knew the lyrics! I was stunned. It makes me happy that my music is cross-generational. Yes, I say “my music” but it really belongs to everyone, I suppose. I’ll share.

In 1995, Green Day performed at Ranch Bowl, here in Omaha. I was supposed to go to the show. The guy who asked me was ‘unavailable’ per se, and at the last minute, I backed out due to some moral agenda that had taken root in my brain. I regretted it immensely BEFORE last night’s show. Now, I want to curl into a ball and cry for losing that opportunity. And now, Ranch Bowl is a Devil-Mart. So unfair. Dr. John’s still exists and Ranch Bowl is GONE!

I saw some great shows at Ranch Bowl. I have never seen a good show at Wal-mart. Not even one. In fact, I wasn’t even impressed with the LIVE Jonas Brothers concert that Wal-Mart televised in their stores only. There is nothing like screaming pre-pubescent girls in the express lane when I am trying to buy a Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper and some tampons.

COMING SOON: an invitation to join the Dustin McLean Fan Club on Facebook. If you haven’t seen anything produced by DustFilms, please visit DustFilms.com and you will see what all the hype is about.

PERSONAL NOTE: I need better posture . . . and a kiss from you.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: You intrigue me.

13 August 2009

So sublime when the stars are aligned

current mood: content

All you have to do is close your eyes
And just reach out your hands and touch me
Hold me close don't ever let me go
More than words is all I ever needed you to show
~ “More than Words” by Extreme

Last night, NBF and I went to see the Sema ritual of the Whirling Dervishes of Rumi. Ever since I was a little girl, I have wanted to witness the turning of these followers of Rumi. It is a beautiful and spiritual ritual which can only be truly appreciated in person.
“The Sema ceremony represents the human being's spiritual journey, an ascent by means of intelligence and love to Perfection (Kemal). Turning toward the truth, he grows through love, transcends the ego, meets the truth, and arrives at Perfection. Then he returns from this spiritual journey as one who has reached maturity and completion, able to love and serve the whole of creation and all creatures without discriminating in regard to belief, class, or race.” ~www.whirlingdervishes.org
I was entranced by the music being played, the singing of prayer, and of course the physical manifestation of worship through the whirling and bowing of the dervishes. I have to admit that I am well-aware of my tendency to gravitate toward activities which others may interpret as ‘dorky’. I was more excited to see the Whirling Dervishes than I am to go to Green Day tonight – and that is coming from the point of view of a seventeen year Green Day fan.

I am currently reading a fascinating book called ‘Four Queens: The Provencal Sisters Who Ruled Europe’. It is a non-fiction account of the lives of the 4 sisters from Provence who became 4 of the most powerful women in 13th Century Europe. The most famous of the sisters was Eleanor of Aquitaine, Queen of France AND of England, Mother of King Richard the Lionheart. She was great at ruling, poor at staying on good terms with her husband. If you want to read a fantastic biography about her, I strongly suggest “Eleanor of Aquitaine: A Life” by Alison Weir.

See? That is exactly what I was referencing before. I get so excited about stuff that many would consider academic and dull. But I am telling you, there is nothing dull about the past. It is compelling and filled with adventure and intrigue and nefarious plots. It’s better than anything a modern fiction writer could create.

All of that being said, I am looking forward to seeing Billie Joe Armstrong belt out some tunes tonight while Ali-Son and I push our way through a sea of rabid concert-goers. I will NOT be wearing flip-flops this time! As an added note, I wish he would go back to blue hair. The black just doesn’t do it for me. ;)

PERSONAL NOTE: Thank you so much for embracing my inner-dorkiness and liking me for me. You bring me joy.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Destroyed any more barns lately? Ha ha ha ha ha ha

11 August 2009

Mazel Tov

current mood: celebratory

Let’s paint the town
We’ll shut it down
Let’s burn a roof
Then we’ll do it again
~ “I Got A Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas

Two days ago, my sister and I, holding hands, crossed the finish line of the Chicago Breast Cancer 3-Day. For three days we walked alongside 2,000 other men and women through the city of Chicago. 60 grueling miles in pouring rain and blistering heat. We literally braved the elements, and they were not kind! We did our best to step over puddles and avoid the mud. After 20+ miles of walking in adverse weather conditions, we set up our pink tents in the rain. Our bags were wet. Our clothes were soaked. Our cheers were loud as that final walker entered camp. Rain is nothing compared to what a woman goes through in her fight against breast cancer. Blisters don’t require chemo or radiation.

Still, we were exhausted, and after a spaghetti dinner, we stumbled into our tents and slept soundly as the rain pelted our tents. In the morning, the rain was still falling. We donned our ponchos and sneakers. With breakfast in our tummies, we set off down the road, a sea of pink splashing onward. By mid-day the sun came out and was relentless. The heat index was over 100 degrees. At every pit stop, the 3-Day crew and staff reminded everyone to drink lots of water. The medical tent was filled with walkers needing ice and blister care. Walkers were being red carded and sidelined for the remainder of the day due to dehydration and exhaustion.

Camp that night was HOT; but at least it was dry! We removed the tarps from our tents and angled the doors to catch the light breeze. Our shoes were finally permitted to dry out. Sunday morning, we awakened before dawn to take down our tents, pack our gear, and eat breakfast. We boarded busses to be shuttled away from camp and to our starting point for the day. We walked through the northern part of Chicago and along the Lake Michigan shore. There was little shade. Medical ran out of ice due to all the injuries and heat exhaustion. We stopped whenever possible to refill our water bottles and to soak our bandanas in ice cold water. The last pit stop was 2.5 miles from Soldier Field; where our journey was to end.

Those last few miles were filled with anticipation and exhaustion. Our bodies went on when they should have collapsed. Teammates were encouraging their fellow-walkers to take ‘just a few more steps’. We made it to Soldier Field and soaked our heads in the water fall wall before walking through the tunnel. The wave of applause and cheering was overwhelming. We were finished. The staff scanned our ID cards and offered their congratulations. My sister and I hugged and took our picture by the Day 3 banner.

We completed the 2009 Breast Cancer 3-Day. In closing ceremonies, we held our shoes up to salute and honor the survivors who walked with us.

You can go here to see our route: http://www.the3day.org/site/DocServer/3Day_2009JourneyMap_CH_fp.pdf?docID=3081

Our steps made a difference; a 5 million dollar difference in the fight against breast cancer. More importantly, we were part of something so much larger than ourselves that we cannot even begin to fathom the effects. If a butterfly flapping its wings can cause a typhoon across the world, think what 2,000 men and women walking 60 miles can accomplish! Here is an excerpt from the closing ceremony speech

“We widen our bonds to include all of the loved ones and friends and even strangers whose lives will be spared because we cared. . . We salute them for sharing their light with us, these past 3 days. We thank our survivors for their commitment to and belief in the cure; for their optimism and patience in the face of sadness and setbacks; for the love that they have shown us and reawakened inside of us by their example; the healing and the hope that they sustain and the courage that will sustain us in the days ahead . . . proof that we were here, living, breathing, shouting with every step. We will never give up. We will never give up. We will never give up. May the future follow in your brave, brave footsteps. . . BECAUSE EVERYONE DESERVES A LONG AND HEALTHY LIFETIME! It may feel like an ending; but the difference you have made has only begun to be known. Can you feel it?”

With those inspiring words, I will close this message. Please consider joining our team to walk or volunteering your time to crew the 2010 Susan G. Komen Cleveland 3-Day for the Cure with us! Your life will be changed. Your world will be changed. YOU will be changed, for the better!

In gratitude to all those who supported me in this year’s fundraising efforts and walk. With all of my heart, thank you!

xoxo ~jillian

Eidetic Vision

Main Entry: ei·det·ic Pronunciation: I-'det-ik Function: adjective : marked by or involving extraordinarily accurate and vivid recall especially of visual images - an eidetic memory Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, © 2002 Merriam-Webster, Inc.