Tuesday, December 29, 2009

This is my daughter for whom I would gladly return to prison

Quote from First Crush

My first crush and his lovely wife had a baby yesterday. In honor of that, I sent him a quote that I'd seen on Facebook:
    Guns dont kill people Daddies with pretty Daughters Do
He sent me this in return. But not before he sent me the news that little Penelope had joined the world:
    Mum and bub are beautiful and healthy. Dad is healthy
It's fun having long lost folks back in your life. Between Facebook and Google, I've found just about everyone I ever wondered about. There's a few folks I've still not "found". Chris Thornton for instance (in case he ever ego-surfs). Heather Harris for another, though I think I can find out about her through my sister-in-law. Six degrees and all. Oh! And Dan Watola who first dubbed me Debineezer.

Anyway, I have lots of things collected up from all these weeks of silence. I'll get 'em in here soon.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's amazing how much fun you have with a gift card and a brick

Luann, 12/13/09

I got nothin' on this one. I blame the new Rottenfield Manor. I'm tired, tired, tired. But this is funny.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Contemplating which of the 7 deadly sins to take on next

What I Did for Love by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

I admit it...I like books with no redeeming mental value. I don't always read complete crap, but it's a good break. Personally? I'm thinking of taking up sloth for a while.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

I want more suck for my buck!

Debi to Mike while deciding upon a range hood in Home Depot

I love to cook. Sometimes, I cook at high heat. I'm not saying I burn it, I'm saying that sometimes, a nice steak requires a little bit of singeing under the broiler, and I'm just the kinda girl to do it. Cooking a pizza at 450? Well, unless your oven is immaculate, you're likely to generate a bit of microscopic particulate matter.

Our current "exhaust fan" couldn't suck the whipped cream off a mocha. No seriously. I had NO idea that wall mounted exhaust fans existed...yep, flush to the wall. I think maybe it was supposed to be a bathroom fan or something. But it takes out next to nothing. It often fills the neighborhood with a pleasant aroma and I do tend to cook for an army...but I don't think that's part of its cunning plan.

Smoke alarms are designed to detect this microscopic particulate matter and scream at the top of their little electronic lungs that it's time to panic because...um...FIRE!!!!!!!!! The smoke detector closest to our kitchen is in the stairwell adjacent. It doesn't do it too often because we tend to keep the door to the basement closed. It's cold down there. If the smoke alarm goes off, we always say "Dinner's ready" and 9 times out of 10, it is.

No longer. For my new kitchen, I have obtained he who shall be called "Sir Sucks-a-lot". No, Gabe, he is not a Senator from Nebraska (that's actually "Sir Blows-Hard"), though it is easy to see your confusion written across your ex-patriot face. Sir Sucks-a-lot moves 440 cubic feet of air each and every minute he's powered. Compare this to the 300-350 CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) that is considered to be on the high end of the spectrum.

Sir Sucks-a-Lot is unlikely to allow conversation in his all-powerful presence. Like his mistress, he demands all attention be paid to him. But it is a small price to pay for suck divine suckitude.

Best of all? I saved $100 because apparently, they're phasing out this model. I suspect there just isn't a market for power over beauty. There were pretty range hoods, but they lacked the power of my beautiful boy.

Mock me if you will. I bought $5 light fixtures for my bedroom and an $8 for the stairwell. Why? Because I have my priorities screwed on straight. And if you're good, I'll cook for you to prove it.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

What is that? A Par 3?

Mike's response to Tiger Wood's "Accident"

As you may know, Tiger Woods backed out of his home in a gated community this weekend, ran into his neighbor's tree, bounced off the rim and knocked himself unconscious. Um?

First, the man has way too much money to be backing out of anything. Circular driveway anyone?

Second, how does one hit a neighbor's tree hard enough to ring your proverbial bell while sustaining only minimal damage? Was he driving a friggin' hummer? Don't answer that.

So, Mike's theory was that it went mailbox, tree, street for his three hits. Hey, that's pretty good for a man who wouldn't know par if he met it on the street.

Frankly, I'm glad he's dead

Northwest Washington has experienced the execution of 5 police officers in the last couple of months. This morning, the "suspect" was shot dead.

I've been involved in several conversations surrounding these events. From what my SPD officer acquaintance hoped would happen to the killer to the nature of evil and if it exists.

Judaism does not believe in the standard interpretation of "An eye for an eye." Our tradition teaches that this passage means that reparations must be paid, not that you literally take out another.

When we recite the plagues during the Passover Seder we remove 10 drops of wine from our cups to diminish our joy because of the suffering of the Egyptians.

What I'm saying is that by tradition, we're not a blood-thirsty lot. And yet, I find myself incredibly glad the SOB is dead. I'm more glad that he was going to shoot at yet another police officer and died with one of the guns he stole from a dead officer. Without those? There could have been lingering questions over whether or not the got the right guy.

I had the opportunity this morning to tell two Seattle Police Officers thank you. Thank you for facing death every day. Thank you for doing a job I can't fathom. Thank you for protecting us. I'm glad he's dead. I'm glad he suffered with a belly wound for 2 days. I hope this doesn't speak too much of the blackness of my soul.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

What does it mean when the spambots get you?

I've been getting spam. Only on old posts. But it's annoying. Does this mean I'm popular? Or I've just been around long enough to notice?

We DID close on the house on November 20. Between that and the WORST computer month on record, I've been doing a GREAT job of keeping up here, even though I've got funny stuff to say.

Unfortunately, I'm in the post-Thanksgiving dinner haze. So, seriously? Tomorrow. Or DEFINITELY by Monday!

Monday, November 16, 2009

We're wearing garbage bags and paying a lot for the privilege

Debi to Mike before the start of Blue Man Group

This is actual the show that started the path to broke-ness that I chronicled last week. We were wandering up the strip from Mandalay Bay...yep we walked all the way back to the Venetian from there. And that is a BLOODY. LONG. WAY. Navigating around people. Dodging in to places reported to have penny pressing machines. Dodging the lines of men (and a few women) handing out cards, broadsheets and magazines about where to find nude women who will do anything you want. JEEPERS.

Anyway, as we came upon the half price ticket place, I asked Mike if he wanted to see anything. He said he wouldn't mind seeing Blue Man Group, which actually surprised me. But we got ticket vouchers which we had to exchange for actual tickets at the box office.

I didn't want to pay for the more expensive tickets, so we got tickets in the red zone. It turns out that the red zone has the four front rows and then all the ones behind the good seats. The four front rows are called "The Poncho Seats". The gentleman at the box office assured us it was more of a drizzle than a downpour. Miss BittyCrazy said something to the effect of "HA!" on my Facebook page when I mentioned this. So, we got them.

We arrived and donned our clear plastic bags with hoods. And sat. And waited. And sweated a bit. And laughed our way heartily through the show. And nary a drop assaulted us. Mike didn't know what to expect from the show, but he expected to have some form of liquid aimed at him. The lack of this disappointed him. Had I known, I'd have saved some of my water and spit it at him after. Oh well.

Friday, November 13, 2009

I love Homestreet Bank!

This is a true story. I am not a paid spokesperson for Homestreet Bank (though I'm happy to be if you guys call).

I went into the Wedgwood branch of Homestreet today to get out some cash. I ran into Gina who I mentioned my last post. I asked if she'd gotten my amusing (to me) voice mail about vanquishing the ATM machine. She said yes and asked what I'd written in my blog. Huh? It took me a minute to figure out what she was talking about. Then she paraphrased the line I wrote about her jumping right in.

Turns out that their marketing department must have a web crawler that alerts them to "media" hits, and I guess my post must have hit their radar. Apparently, they contacted Gina to find out if there was a problem that needed to be fixed. It went to the head honcho of marketing, did the hokey pokey and ended up with the president of the bank. SERIOUSLY? What's funny is that only two lines of the entry was quoted and it was something like "Gina said". Not very informative. So she was pretty well in the dark.

Apparently, my humorous writing style of my last post didn't entirely convey that not ONLY did Gina make sure my problem was fixed, she and every person at Homestreet Bank ROCKS! I don't go in that often, but they all know me when I do. I don't have to call a corporate number to get help. I call the branch and they either help me right out or they make the calls and get back to me. I've been pointed to a corporate number once and that was for help on the website that the branch simply couldn't help with.

When I had to go back and get copies of our cleared rent checks for a YEAR? One of the employees probably spent an hour going through screen after screen after screen of check images to find the 6 I needed (I had the latest ones). Then called me back late on a Friday afternoon to say they were done and she'd look out for Mike to come and get them.

I've never had an interaction with them that was less than happy making. So honestly? I can't imagine EVER banking anywhere else, and wish we'd switched more than three years ago. I'll be emailing "whomever" to make sure they know this. Although I'm sure it will show up on their webcrawler by Monday morning.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Broke in Vegas? How cliché!

I mentioned that we went to Vegas. On Sunday, our debit cards started arguing with us. It all started when we were at the half-price ticket place to get tickets for Blue Man Group, which I will write about later. After a weekend of reckless spending, my debit card was declined. Twice. So, I went off to call the bank to leave Mike to try his. Turns out I can't get through to my bank on Sundays. I could have if I'd had a lost or stolen card, but a declined card? Sucks to be me.

All hope was not lost. We had plenty of cash on us to get us through the next day when I could talk to the bank and say "um???". And we have another bank account we could get some out of, but like I said, we had plenty.

We tried it again after lunch, and no problem. No problem for the rest of the day. Then at dinner, the card went through as a gift card and left us with an $18 balance. VERY bizarre.

Well, in Vegas, "plenty" is a relative term. On our way to breakfast, I tried the atm. No joy. I called the toll-free number on the back of my card and was put on perma-hold. I called MY branch of Homestreet Bank and Gina jumped RIGHT in. So, even though I can't talk to anyone on the weekend, the branch makes up for it. She said that we have a $2500/day limit and sometimes Friday, Saturday and Sunday hit all at once and bam! No, we did NOT spend $2500 in Vegas...we did pay for the trip and the hold at the hotel and a couple of things for the house. So, bam!

She said it should clear by 10 a.m., so to try the ATM again after that. We went and had breakfast. (The mini-buffet at the Venetian is AWESOME by the way. There aren't a lot of things, but the things that are there are phenomenal.) We made our way back to the ATM. No joy. Although this time it didn't tell me I had exceeded my daily limit, it just said no.

So, we went to the room and packed up...then we headed down to the packaging center to send a few things home. The card was declined AGAIN. Well, there went the rest of our cash, eh? So, I tried my other debit card for the other bank. The ATM gave me the same message about having exceeded my daily limit, which was amusing given that we hadn't used it in 3 weeks. At this point, I decided that the Venetian ATMs were just friggin' grumpy.

At this point, we'd checked out and I was desperate for my morning fix of Starbucks black iced tea, no water, no sweetener. I have a Starbucks card which is refilled automatically just so I always have the means to feed my addiction. So we're off to Treasure Island across the street. The Venetian/Palazzo complex has no Starbucks. The ONLY thing that gives them less than 5 stars in my book.

But I forgot. Not only does that Starbucks charge $5 for 20 ounces of iced tea (I kid you not), they don't honor Starbucks cards. Luckily, we'd stocked up on quarters for our penny press activities, so we were able to scrape enough together for my fix. I'd also gotten a call back from Gina and she said had called the corporate office and it was just running slow today. She asked me to try it again. So we find an ATM at Treasure Island. SUCCESS!

So, we were sans cash for a few minutes and our ride to the airport was already paid for. Annoying at worst, but so cliché.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thank you, Veterans

I don't wax sentimental around here too often, but this is important to me and I want to share.

I'm an Air Force brat several times over. My grandfather was a retired Major. My Uncle was a Green Beret in Vietnam and served in the reserves for MANY years after he left active duty. My mother, father, step-mother and two step-fathers were military. My husband served and more friends from high school than I could possibly count (though I'll try later).

I am especially grateful to women veterans. My mother and step-mother joined the Air Force in the early 70s. A lot of folks didn't think they had any business being there and it would have been easy not to be. And they stayed. I chose not to join the armed forces. I am grateful that I had both that luxury and that I had women before me that paved the way for those in my generation and after. When we buried my step-mother, it was in a national cemetery with military honors. It made me proud to be her step-daughter.

Those of you unconnected with the service may not realize, but being military family is its own form of service. I had it easier because it wasn't wartime, but my mom was stationed in Korea for a year and my dad spent 2 years in Turkey when I was young. My parents lived through the threat of Vietnam. My friends were in the first Gulf War. I never got calls saying my son had been seriously injured on a mission in Veitnam. I never had the men visit from the DOD to tell me that my husband was dead. I never had someone return to me different than when they left, or never return at all. I don't have to live with that fear. Many do, and they deserve as much thanks as any veteran.

I may be a bleeding heart liberal. I may think that we're in ill-advised conflicts of our own making. I may think a lot of things. But I am grateful beyond words that I was fortunate enough to grow up surrounded by men and women ready to lay down their lives for their country and those who live in it. I'm grateful that I've had the luxury, and yes, it IS a luxury, not to serve. No one I grew up with was ignorant of the military and military life. So many people I surround myself now don't have any connection, and I think that's a very bad thing.

So, thanks Mom, Dad, Kathie, Uncle Frank, Mike, Ty, TJ, Jon, Ken, Jim, KC, Donald, Adam, Cindy and the two idiots my mom married (who weren't worthy of marriage, but they deserve some degree of gratitude for serving). Thanks to those who love them, support them, and pray daily for their safe return. Thanks to anyone I forgot to name. And thanks to the millions I don't know.

What happens in Vegas comes to debineezer.net

We took advantage of obscenely low priced packages to Vegas this weekend. We could not have had a better time, and frankly, I would rank it as the second coolest trip I've ever taken. It doesn't beat 20 days in London on a student loan...not even a close second, but definitely second. Mike could not stop laughing at his dorky wife who floated on air for an hour after getting pictures with the Coca-Cola polar bear, jumped for joy after winning $11 at video roulette, and generally had the best possible time.

Anyway, tomorrow is my tribute to veterans, but Thursday, I will be here to regale you with FABULOUS stories of our trip. Stay tuned.

Monday, November 02, 2009

You say you're not a bed rubber, either??

Blame it all on Miss BittyCrazy. She needs to back away from the Birkenstocks. I had NO idea you could use Google to alert you to the emergence of random phraseology on the web. Egad! But a commenter on my post regarding fluvial geomorphology indicates that it's EXACTLY how he came across my blog. After offering to allow said surfer to geomorph her fluvial, she suggested I do a series of really dumb job names. I couldn't find any at first, so she sent me a list. And sadly, I can identify pretty much all of them, including the one from the Neutral Buoyancy Lab. You'd think with all this arcane knowledge, I'd have gotten laid more in college.

However, I did run across a few I'll share of the next couple of days that made me sit up and say "Um?". Bed rubber. Yep, actual job. The job itself sounds like a pretty typical foundry job, so I'm not sure why they make it sound like a queen-sized prophylactic. More over, I don't know why the two references I found on the web call it a DOT job description. OOOhhhh...it means Dictionary of Occupational Titles. And according to this page, there are a disturbing number of jobs which use the word "rubber".

In other news, I've posted some pictures of the future Rottenfield Manor.

You are a fluvial geomorphologist, aren't you?

Discussion with Miss BittyCrazy sparked by this posting

As anyone who reads Miss BittyCrazy's blog knows, she was laid off from the Evil Empire in the not-too-distant past. As a project manager myself, I'm currently working for a PM Certificate so I can get a PM Certification. I don't think they're very meaningful, these certifications, but people who hire PMs do. Anyway, I wandered over to the Project Management Institute and clicked through to their job listings. None of the Washington listings are for PMs.

But I think PM is too narrow. I think all our hard work QUALIFIES us for fluvial geomorphology. And since she can't even TRANSLATE fluvial geomorphology, I think Miss BittyCrazy is certainly as qualified as 99.99% of the population.

Of course, this lead DIRECTLY to a conversation about her thought that it sounds like someone who would be boring at parties. And as a Marine Chemistry major, I pointed out that the interdisciplinary folks tend to be more interesting than the pure scientists. Based on nothing in particular. Except maybe the facts that (a) I was one and (b)I hung out with Georgia Tech engineers. So there you go, conjecture, innuendo, and completely unsupported supposition. Happy Monday Morning.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Get off your cross...they're gonna need it at the church come Easter!

I am skilled and educated in many, many things. There may be NOTHING I am more educated in than the concept of martyrdom. Specifically, as it plays out in interpersonal relationships.

In my family, we learn martyrdom before other less important things like walking and bladder control. I'm fairly sure the secret proudest moment in a Vans Evers' parental life is the moment the little devil first puts the back of its wrist to its forehead in a gesture that would make Scarlett O'Hara proud. I have only recently come to recognize some of the magnificent moments of martyrdom exhibited by my beloved grandparents throughout their lives. In other words? We're pretty damned impressive when you consider the family is neither Catholic nor Jewish (my current religious affiliation aside).

I have had martyrs try to impress me...or rather try to manipulate me. They have NO idea what they're up against, really. You'd think I'd have more appreciation and, perhaps, sympathy for these impresarios. But those of you who know me best realize that I mock and judge them harshly. By the same token, I'm unforgiving with my own martyrdom. Unfortunately, I'm so good at it that often even I can't detect it. Ok, so THOSE moments give me a little pride.

I wonder what our kids will learn of martyrdom. With my mother and I both in the house, the potential teaching moments will be endless. Hopefully, she and I can keep each other in check. Hell, with any luck, the kids will call us on it.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

I can't listen to politicians no more, I get a seizure

Terry on True Blood

I can't say that this is a good show. They know how to keep you interested from one episode to the next. It's entertaining, and we've only got two seasons left of Season 1, but it's not one of those one we'll be standing in line for to get Season 2.

The sex is a bit excessive. I'm all for sex, and I'm not against depictions of sex on TV. But it seems to be one of the pointless selling points of this show. It's HBO, so the sex is pretty damned graphic, too.

But, you know I'm a sucker for one-liners. And I like to share them with you, my 4.2 readers.

Monday, October 19, 2009

This president believes in global warming, as well as evolution

Obama's Nobel Peace Prize Announcement (for Diplomatically Impaired) on YouTube

Those of you at "work" will have to watch this one from home (or through a Proxy), but it's totally worth it. A friend of mine on Facebook posted this link which has the announcement of Obama being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize with hilarious subtitles. I was planning to drag my weary ass off to bed without an entry tonight, but the above phrase aborted THAT plan.

Now I am one of those seemingly rare, educated, critically-thinking, bleeding-heart-liberal religious types. I swear, I eat non-kosher meat, and I don't claim to believe in G-d on a daily basis, but I believe in religion and am in awe of those more religious than myself. (There are actually a lot of us, but it doesn't seem like it here in the crunchy-granola Pacific Northwest). I also believe in global warming and evolution and the big bang and that the earth is more than 5770 years old (6000? It's OUR friggin' calendar, and the world is only 5770 years old damn it!) I don't exactly disrespect those who don't believe it...I just REALLY don't understand them. I have a great deal of trouble respecting them when they try to make policy that negatively affects the rest of the world based on those beliefs.

Among other useful translations:
    Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's hope while selling so many t-shirts.
    Those who are to lead the world do not have to be dicks about it to the majority of the world's population

The gentleman ends appropriately by saying:
    You can now shit yourselves.
I actually think that one is mis-translated. I think it translates as "You MAY now shit yourselves", but no one would accuse me of being a diplomat.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A lot freaks there…and people from Arkansas

Arlene on True Blood

Later, when her son remarks on how white the vampire is she says "Honey, he's not white, we're white. He's dead."

Now I can appreciate this joke on many levels. I grew up in Lower Alabama (yes, it's true), so I can appreciate jokes about any Southern flavor. And I'm allowed to laugh at them, because I ACTUALLY know Southerners. Second, my dearly adored husband is from Arkansas. I've been there twice. I didn't leave ANYTHING there. Arkansas is a good place to be FROM.

I'm still not sure I like this show. I want to like it. It feels like it has potential. I just don't know if I can imagine what fulfilling the potential would look like.

It DOES come with one-liners, though. And we all know how Debi loves one-liners.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


The Big Bang Theory

I've been mocked before for relying too heavily on Big Bang, but oh well. You've heard of turducken, right? There's a Wiki article on it, so if you haven't? Go. Now for the record, there are kosher turduckens, so we Jews don't have to deprive ourselves of real, honest-to-goodness, organic, free-range turducken.

But, Howard's mom is obviously special. She spawned Howard after all. No, she makes Turbriskefil. Turkey stuffed with brisket stuffed with gefilte fish. Nope, not as good as it sounds.

I like gefilte fish, actually. I can't imagine it being stuffed in anything but maybe some matzoh. Although some friends told me the first gefilte fish they'd ever eaten was deep fried in bacon grease...apparently, Robert's been trying to recreate that down-home goodness in kosher form ever since he converted. Yeah, no dice.

I got nothing witty to wrap this one with...

Monday, October 12, 2009

I wonder what the non-pathetic people are doing tonight?

Rajesh Koothrappali on The Big Bang Theory

I suspect they're not at home watching True Blood. I think maybe it's the show that's making me feel pathetic. We're supposed to love it. But it's pretty dumb so far.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


You thought people started going ballistic about NEW-CU-LAR in response to the fact that our 43rd President couldn't pronounce it, didn't you? I've got news for you. My Uncle Sandy was going ballistic about that in the Reagan era. I'm not sure my cousins said it wrong more than once or twice, but I lived in Lower Alabama and my edumacation would lapse in between visits.

My gram taught everything. There was literally not a subject in K-12 that she could not or did not teach. When I lived with her and she corrected me on something, I'd always shoot back "You're not an English teacher!" because she wasn't teaching English that year. I'll be damned if I can remember one of the things she corrected me on.

Nuclear? Well, I'm sure Uncle Sandy never ACTUALLY whapped me upside the head when I pronounced it like an ignorant piece of trash, but that might have been kinder. There was something about his "You. Know. Better." way of correcting you that both made you feel really bright and really stupid at the same time. And to this day, I prounounce it correctly. He would be VERY sad to know that NEW-CU-LAR is officially an alternate pronunciation in this world.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Barking Bullfrogs!

My Uncle Sandy was a funny guy. Seriously funny. He got ALL my gram's brains, which is scary considering the rest of us aren't slouches in the Brainiac department. He was one of those guys who could mortally insult you in 10 different ways, and you'd STILL walk away thinking he was one of the nicest damned guys you ever met. He left me with several great memories, which I think I'll share this week, but this is the one that has wormed it's way into my daily life and vocabulary.

I'm sure Uncle Sandy stole "Barking Bullfrogs!" from someone else, but in my mind it will forever be Uncle Sandy's way of describing THE FART. Not your typical passing gas. Not the ever-so-embarrassing bare legs on a vinyl chair squeal that you try to pass off as chair noise. Not the silent-but-deadly which were also a problem in my family. Nope, this is how he described that time in your day when your ass talks to you and everyone around you.

In later years, I've updated it, slightly. I'd like to think my Uncle would approve. But "Batman" always seems tacked on to the end. "Batman" ends up tacked to the end to number of my strange phrases like "Shit on a stick, Batman" and...well...that's the only one that jumps to mind.

I googled for "Barking Bullfrog" and came up with this. I don't know exactly what Marky barks at, but it's not gas. Apparently, no one is willing to take on the seminal favorite The Gas We Pass. Hopefully, our kids will have both in their library.

P.S.When I hit "Publish Post" to well, publish this post, the following ad came up on Blogspot.
Flatulence Treatment
Natural Flatulence treatment with proven herbal product.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

There is something underwhelming about scholarly hate mail

An Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England by Brock Clark

I don't think I've ever gotten hate mail. I've gotten one or two letters that felt kinda harsh at the time. Ok, maybe a few more that I've forgotten. I got one from my ex-psychopath that in retrospect was complete and utter manipulation. I've sent some letters filled with anger, but I don't really have anyone I hate, so it seems like it's hard to send hate mail. Those people I once hated are now dead, and sending them letters was always somewhat pointless.

But I've been thinking lately that mail just doesn't come the way it used to. I know people bemoan the death of the written letter right and left, but I have a reason for thinking this now. I've pretty much saved every letter I've ever received. Except those few from my first crush that I was talked into burning. (Ah, the exQUISite drama of your first "breakup"). And the ex-psychopath's letters don't seem to be around any more either. But we're talking letters from the 7th grade. It's not like email. We all delete emails. They're all short. Can you imagine sending a one paragraph letter?

I've hung on to all of them as some sort of proof that people have cared about me. I don't even wonder about that now, but it took a long time to consider myself worthy enough of love to take this step. I'm about to start sending them back to some of the people that wrote them. Not because they aren't precious. If they weren't precious, I wouldn't have them 25 years later. These letters don't tell the story of my life so much as they tell the story of the people who wrote them. The romantic ones won't go back. I'll keep rereading those for years to come. But the childhood ones...I suspect it will be like reading a diary you don't remember writing.

I hope it's as wonderful and meaningful a gift as it feels from my end. Now if I could just get Rae on the phone to get her bloody address!

Monday, September 21, 2009

I have met the other woman...her name is Tivo

My husband has had two girlfriends during our marriage.

One was the new vacuum cleaner we bought to replace my 12-year-old Hoover. The day she came home with us, he vacuumed the living room 3 or 4 times. Each time, he would take her out the side door to clean out her dirt trap and filters. Each time he would come in and exclaim "Look at all this dirt!" This repeated almost daily for a week or so, then subsided. I still tease him about leaving me for the vacuum, but I don't believe to to be true. Anymore.

There is a new woman in his life. She's been here for a while, and I fear she's here to stay. We've had Tivo for a while, but she was relegated to the basement with our TV. I don't like the basement, so we didn't watch much down there. We'd watch movies on the computer monitor in the living room. One day, I got the bright idea to get a wireless transmitter for the Tivo. Now? EVERYTHING is available upstairs. I've written about the ramifications on more than one occasion. Mike records a LOT of things to watch on his Zune.

Not a day goes by that Mike doesn't wander down with his lists of episodes to see what's recorded today, clear off old stuff, look through to see what's coming up. You see, Season Pass isn't foolproof. If only I could get him to be this efficient and thorough about washing the dishes...or hell, even vacuuming. I'd be surprised if he doesn't spend an hour a day managing the thing.

I got him LiquidTV for our anniversary. This was supposed to make our computer into a Tivo AND allow him to control the downstairs Tivo box. Well, not so much. He hates it for various reasons. Yesterday, he physically brought the box up to plug it into the tuner card in a LAST ditch effort to make LiquidTV recognize the Tivo box. It didn't work. Not only didn't it work, he killed his beloved Tivo. Dead. As a doorknob. The thing is a second-generation box, so it's OLD. Well, it was old. Now, as I've mentioned, it's dead.

He WAS smart enough to write down everything he has on Season Pass before it died. No kidding? Fifty entries. Fifty. Granted, some aren't showing right now. ONE is mine (Cake Boss). But still. I mocked him. He declared it finally and irretrievably dead last night around 8 pm. He lasted less than 24-hours before he left the house for a 40-mile round trip to the nearest known replacement down in Southcenter. I told him I could order it from Amazon and have it here on Wednesday. He whined that he wouldn't be able to record NCIS tomorrow. When I pointed out he COULD record it from the computer? He whined.

Update:My husband informs me that TWO of the Season Passes are mine. In addition to Cake Boss, he's recording Charmed. Charmed is entirely the dogs' fault, but that's another blog post.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Why do zealots never understand irony?

Defying Gravity

Seriously? This show had a Very. Slow. Start. But Sunday night? It started looking up. Really up. We were going to get some answers. Things were going to start moving FORWARD instead of the show always teasing us about "What happened back then? Wouldn't YOU like to know???" There were still going to be mysteries, but we could start to figure them out instead of wish 90% of the show would just catch onto the fact that all is not as it seems.

It was the "season finale". Which is to say, ABC started it late, and is now postponing it indefinitely so that other shows can return. That was episode 8. There were 13. ABC is currently mulling it's "scheduling options". The reality is that it got pretty poor ratings. Go figure. They could have condensed all the effing back story into about two and a half shows and we could be half-way to Jupiter by now.

So, we may or may not ever know what happens after the scene that looked an awful lot like Samuel L. Jackson opening the briefcase in Pulp Fiction. We STILL don't know what was in that freakin' briefcase, and we may not ever know what's in the storage bay.

"We" watched the first episode of The Vampire Diaries last night, too. Mike wanted to see it, and I was playing Mah Jong. Yeah, it's definitely on the air because of the Twilight craze, even though the books were written in the early 90s. Vampire meets girl. Much tension ensues. Big Bad Vampire brother comes back to screw up everything. The music definitely didn't suck. The HOT VAMPIRE that girl OBVIOUSLY falls in love with? Not hot. Weird looking. They WANT him to be hot. But they got a brooding Matt Dillon whose face got stretched a bit by one of those programs we play with on the internet. Matt Dillon was always cool, but he wasn't really HOT. Evil vampire brother who is there to screw things up? Ok, he's hot. But not hot enough to make me tune in. Of course it could be like Defying Gravity where we threaten to stop watching for the first 6 episodes and then they end it at 8. That would be cool.

Nobody puts Baby in a corner

Patrick Swayze, 1952 - 2009

Like most girls of my generation, I was introduced to Patrick Swayze through The Outsiders and Red Dawn. But those have never come to mind when I think of him. Yes, it's always about Dirty Dancing. I must admit, I didn't see it until the middle of 1988, but after that, it became a favorite.

When I told Mike last night, he said "We must go rent Road House in honor". I'm sure it won't be at the store for several days.

He was an incredibly talented man. And SEX-EE. Woof. I could watch the "Love is Strange" scene over and over and over.

May his memory always be for a blessing to his loved ones and his fans.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Next time your coccyx hurts, consider therapy

As you may be aware, my coccyx hurts. It's been hurting for quite a while now. I've tried the hemorrhoid doughnut, the tush-cush (Ten Days to a Tighter, Younger Sphincter), a new chair...the only things that work are my leather couch and my exercise ball.

When we discussing my pain-in-the-ass, I asked if my chiropractor knew that apparently you can have the coccyx removed. He said yes, but that it was very difficult to find an orthopedic surgeon to do it. He then gave me a 45-second disclaimer about not wanting me to think his next statement had anything to do with me. He said that most orthopedic surgeons wouldn't touch the tailbone because coccyx pain has a high correlation with mental disturbances and mental illness. Yeah, let THAT one sink in.

Thinking in retrospect that he might be meshugenah, I just found this on the web. Huh. So all I need for my PITA to disappear is up my medication? Who knew?

So, next time your coccyx hurts, look into some Prozac.

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, therapist, or chiropractor, nor do I now or have I ever played on on TV, stage or radio. Never base medical decisions on Debi's ramblings. If you consider doing this, seek therapy.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The topic of discussion is "Operation I Told You So"

Eureka Pilot

I'm NOT adding Eureka to my list of shows. Period. But, as with many things, I will watch it in the background if I'm in the living room. In the pilot episode of this show on SyFy (I'll rant on that below), something goes terribly awry in the town where all the geniuses live and the government develops stuff. The Colonel (of an unnamed agency which seems to supersede the Department of Defense) gets a call in the middle of the night and tells his staff to get all the big wigs together in the Sit Room for the topic of discussion which titles this post. I would give a WHOLE hell of a lot to be able to send a meeting invite with THAT on the title.

But this brings me to SciFi. They've now renamed themselves SyFy. To which I can only say, "WTF"?? SciFi means something. SyFy apparently stands for "We're so hard up in spite of our wildly popular original series, we'd like to show WRESTLING now". Yeah, you weren't ACTUALLY on Spike last time you flipped by it.

Anyway, I'm guessing marketing folks are not only out of work, but ridiculously cheap. Which would imply you could get GOOD work for cheap. Hrm. I guess THAT theory doesn't hold.

Monday, September 07, 2009

I'm nesting vicariously

Chris is having a baby. By which I mean, his lovely and talented wife is having a baby and he gets to stand around, be (most RIGHTEOUSLY) blamed, and generally wring his hands. Any day now. Could have already happened. Apparently, he refuses to tweet about it. He's a writer dork, not a cool kid.

I have not crocheted baby blankets for a while. After crocheting 60 wee funny bonnets (also known as yarmulkes or kippot) for our Jewish wedding, it may be another few years before I get around to it. So, I'm providing tasty food. You know, what I'm REALLY good at. I did all the shopping last weekend for at least a solid week of food, probably quite a bit more. There currently rests three and a half gallons of soup in my freezer. I started muffins this morning (though I think I'm just going to make those fresh as requested. They don't have much in the way of freezer space, so I'm making stuff that can go from my freezer to them in a heated fashion relatively quickly.

Chris says I am not allowed to bring over food UNTIL the baby comes, no matter how industrious I am in advance. He's no fun. How on earth will I coo and cluck over his lovely wife and generally make myself a pain in the ass? Honestly, he has NO regard for my needs WHAT SO EVER.

We also got a dehydrator this weekend I've put two batches of apples in so far and well, one batch is already gone. Next we try "fruit leather" which is your basic no sugar added fruit roll-up. Who KNEW they weren't a General Mills invention?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

You wanna die by post-its? Because I can make that happen.

Get Smart

Originally, Mike really wanted to see this. Then, Steve Carrell pissed him off somehow, and he didn't want to see it. I ran across it at the library and figured I'd bring it home. It was surprisingly good.

The original Get Smart was arguably brilliant. But it was too much for me. I cringe at repeated idiocy. This was FAR more subtle believe it or not, and yet still slap-stick funny. Alan Arkin and Dwayne Johnson (yeah, that's The Rock in his former life) were terrific supporting characters and the stapler scene? We had to rewind to watch it again.

I think the most fun was the interaction between the desk-jockey analysts and the entirely-too-egotistical field agents. One of those field agents made this threat. You know, it's your basic geek vs. jock struggle. The geeks win, even when they lose.

All in all, very enjoyable for a free movie. We also watched The Chumscrubber. I can't say the same for it. I'm not sure WHAT I can say for it.

BONUS: this makes 5 updates in one week. FIVE. I don't know I had that much to pontificate spew forth on share with folks. Blame Miss Bittycrazy.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Moronic Inferno

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz

Keeping with the theme from Monday, I give you the last of my quotes from Oscar Wao. He used this phrase to describe junior high. I have NO idea what he means, really. Junior high was an especially bucolic and productive point in my life. Dropping your bright pink gym shorts on the guy who had the locker under you who just HAPPENED to be the guy you had a secret crush on? Never happened to me. Wearing a pink sundress with my COOL brand new zip-on kangaroo tennies (the ones that are SO cool, I can't even find a picture of them on Google)? Dunno what you're talking about. Being quizzed by the queen bitch on why I was wearing blue eye shadow and a green shirt (um, there's more than one color of eye shadow??)? Nope, not me. Spending the night at a friend's house and stealing the world's ugliest plant because we couldn't figure out how to steal a street sign? *shrug*

Pryor Junior High School wasn't all bad. At least I was a band fag instead of a football player. Record while I was in band (and thus required to attend all football games)? 1-7 in 8th grade, 0-8 in 9th. Come to think of it, they might have been better off if I'd played football instead. I got to be in gifted Biology with the ever-talented Mr. Williams. The man could deliver an entire lecture without ever dislodging the ball of spit that sat in the corner of his mouth. And me? Advanced placement me who actually took my 9th grade math class at the high school? I got a GREAT award at the end of the year. Turns out I made not only the highest grade of the year, but one of the highest grades EVER. In Home Economics. I bet my name is STILL on a plaque in the library.

Moronic inferno indeed.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

You're the best kind of bad juju

Ittybittycrazy is someone I "met" on a social mailing list I've been on for years. One day she pointed me to her blog, she stumbled across mine. The connection was OBVIOUS, and we soon made plans to meet in person. Of course, that took forever between her buzzing social life and my various and sundry malaise. We've managed to have lunch twice now.

The first time was lovely. But later that day, I finally noticed that I was having heart palpitations and was sent off to the ER by my lovely GP. It turns out I didn't blog about my heart palpitations, for as Ms. Bittycrazy will tell you, I SUCK at updating my blog these days. Oh, and it was a perfectly lovely trip...in and out in under 2 hours after they'd monitored my heart and found some extra beats, but nothing dangerous. NOTHING. I held neither the heart palpitations nor the loveliness of the Swedish Cherry Hill ED against my new friend.

Anyway, we had lunch again yesterday. A lovely time was had by all, followed by an incredibly silly walk around the neighborhood trying to find my car. Last night, I cooked up some CHEAPASS tuna I got from Whole Paycheck over the weekend (fresh off the truck for $2.99/lb for the whole fish). I sauteed it on one side, carefully turned it over and stuck it in a 450 degree oven for a few minutes. MAGNIFICENT.

I REMEMBERED to use a potholder to remove the pan from the oven. Not a given for those of you who know me. Went about my business and about two minutes later, pick the pan up. With no potholder. Turns out the handle was still OHMYUNHOLYFREAKINGHELLALMIGHTY hot. Immediately run my hand under cold water, followed by holding on to ice for the next two hours. First degree burns, so somewhat painful, but nothing like it could have been.

Mike and I trekked out to find Spenco 2nd Skin Moist Burn Pads, which it would seem are now kept behind the counter at Bartell because I think they're saturated with narcotics they feel SO good. Came home and it only took two or three tries for mom and I to get the damn burn covered. At some point my mom said something about me reading the directions. I pointed out that I didn't need to RTFM. I've used these things so damned many times I know the FM by heart. Then I think I went off on something about R-ing the FM, but I stopped then.

I realized after my hand is wrapped in an ace bandage (because the 6 feet of tape only cut off my circulation and didn't actually keep the gel in contact with my burned hand), that this is all her fault. Has to be. It's not like I hurt myself when she's not around or anything. Damn it, Bert get off the effing floor.

Anyway, feel fine today. Not even tender. Those burn pads are miracles, but remember to give the secret code word to the pharmacist. Ittybittycrazy may be my newest friend, but at this rate, she'll be the last new one I ever have!!

Aw honey, did your butt scare you?

Trying to comfort Lily

Yes, I'm a dog person. Well, specifically, I'm a small dog person, which makes me FAR less of a person in some eyes. And I understand those eyes, because they used to be mine. I don't know that I could be a big dog person for a few reasons. One, they drool. Big dogs drool. It's not their fault. If I had a tongue that big hanging out the side of my mouth as my only means of cooling, I'm sure I'd drool like that, too. The fact remains, there are few things on earth that gross me out more quickly.

Second? Big dogs smell like dogs. I'm not saying my dogs don't smell, but they have to REALLY need a bath for me to even notice when they're curled up in my lap. It helps that mine are not only TINY but also the shortest of short-haired, so there's not a lot of places for the stench to hide. Dogs are hard to keep clean, I know. And I'm sure I'd be entirely too lazy to keep a big dog clean and thus un-stanky. Thus, no big dog.

Anyway, my crazy, high maintenance, yappy little Italian Greyhound, Lily, is...well? She's very intelligent but...she's a drama queen, which you would think would make her my favorite, but let's face it, I hate the competition. I'm at least a self-aware drama queen. What's really funny is that even though she's a year and a half old, and hasn't grown since she was probably 10 months old, she still doesn't exactly know where all parts of her doggie-self are at any given time. Iggies (shorthand for Italian Greyhound) have amazingly long legs. So my 10-pound dog is as tall as your standard 30-pound mutt. She doesn't seem to keep track of them very well. She's always doing stupid things like sticking them under my feet when they're about to hit the ground. I KEEP telling her "paw vs. shoe"? Shoe ALWAYS wins. She's a slow learner.

She also does this bizarre thing once or twice a day which can ONLY be described as Lily Freak-out. Without seeing it (I should record it for YouTube) all I can say is that it's as if she's gearing up to do the dead cockroach. She heads for the couch and attacks the part where the back and the seat join. And she rolls. And rolls. And bites. And jumps. It's truly hysterical. And it's not just one couch. Any couch she's on when the mood strikes.

Anyway, Lily's butt has stalked her a few times. More precisely, she's had a klingon or two and they scare the unholy bejeebers out of her. She runs around yelping with her tail tucked under her. I shouldn't laugh, but it's funny as hell. That isn't what elicited this particular comment. She just jumped away from her butt. Yeah, that's what I said. Maybe it was post-traumatic klingon syndrome??

Monday, August 24, 2009

We've had reports of aggravated stupidity

Nuclear Jellyfish by Tim Dorsey

Dude, I suck at updating lately. Trying to get my mojo back in many aspects of life, so let me start here.

Yes, Serge A. Storms is back in Tim Dorsey's latest romp through Florida. Think Carl Hiassen on a speed ball followed by a week of Crystal Meth. Maybe Carl Hiassen just on a speed ball. Elmore Leonard would need the week of Crystal Meth.

I'm listening to it on audio, and I'm only about half-way through the first disk, and there's already been death by sprinkler system of two Neonazi's who were beating up bums under a bridge in Jacksonville. Serge may be a serial killer, but he only kills the scum of society.

Not that I have EVER experienced aggravated stupidity. Never. It just doesn't happen. I love ALL people, even their flaws. Come on Bert, up off the floor. You don't know where it's been. And I don't appreciate your implication. Oh, who am I kidding? I've got the patience of a fruit fly in heat when it comes to stupidity, inefficiency, intentional ignoramusness and general dickheadedness.

Anyway, here's to less aggravated stupidity and more Serge A. Storms in this world.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Looks like an H2IK Sequence

Defying Gravity

As I'm sure you all know, Hubby is NOT allowed to add any more shows to OUR TV lineup. If there's something new he wants to watch, I either watch it in the background while playing CivIV or he watches it during slow times at work on his Zune. I said I wanted to watch this after seeing previews. I still blame him, but I can see the skepticism in your beady little eyes.

We desperately want to like this show. But after the pilot episode, it didn't look promising. It keeps jumping back and forth between 10-years-ago, 5-years-ago and present time (which is in an undetermined future). There's a mysterious force pushing them to explore the solar system. Apparently, abortion is illegal, but they don't go into why at all. There's your basic soap opera plot line with a ship captain who is married to the project director (who is stuck back on earth), ex-lovers stuck together on the ship, and a crew-member's husband mysteriously developing heart problems hours before the main launch causing him to be stuck on earth.

Anyway, last night (the 3rd episode) offered the first real laughs of the series. After REALLY pissing off the instructor in class, one of the student astronauts goes up to said instructor and explains that when he was a contractor designing part of the ship, the bosses expected them to know everything whenever asked. He and his coworkers came up with a code called "H2IK" which stands for "Hell if I Know".

It comes up later in the show when said engineer (who is now stuck on the ground with the project's two directors really screwing with his life) reviewing the problem with ship having no power and says to his former instructor "It looks like an H2IK Sequence". Obviously no one else knows what this means, but in code? "You're screwed."

Anyway, in true Captain Montgomery Scott fashion, he pulls it out in the end figuring out that some asshat left a wrench in the power drive causing much chaos.

We've decided we'll watch the next couple of episodes based on the small gleam of humor offered in this episode. And I plan to use the phrase H2IK from here on out.

Monday, August 10, 2009

ADOS: Attention Defecit OOH! SHINY!

"Flair" given to my cousin on Facebook

Just to show you how aptly this describes me? I changed my Instant Messenger name and picture and forgot to update my blog for a good 30 minutes while I went from place to place on Facebook. You know, Facebook? That unholy time suck?

Anyway, speaking of shiny, I need to take my new shoes to the cobbler tomorrow in order to have the left toe stretched. In addition to providing me with highly expensive, extremely uncomfortable new orthotics, my new podiatrist told me that my left little toe has an enlargement on the bone. He told me in a most matter-of-fact manner that I have two choices: make the shoes bigger or the toe smaller. Apparently, making the toe smaller isn't a simple matter of soaking in Epsom salts or something. Nope, it involves SURGICAL SHAVING OF THE BONE. He DID tell me that any good cobbler could stretch my cute shoes with no problem so that there is absolutely no rubbing. Good podiatrist and sensible. Could it be MORE obvious that a petite flower such as myself would never give up her cute shoes entirely??

UPDATE: Chris, my local grammarian, editor and all things OCD has pointed out that I spelled "Defecit" wrong. Apparently, it's "Deficit". He accepts not my excuse that the button was spelled wrong. He also hates that I use the old-fashioned typing rule of two spaces after a period. Every time he is forced to proof something of mine, he does an immediate search and replace. I think he's given up chastising me for it.

I'm honestly a pretty good speller. But the arcane rules trip me up. Because they're not really rules...they seem to apply 50% of the time, which makes them suggestions in my book. At least I still pronounce it "NEW-CLEE-ER"...Uncle Sandy pounded that into my head at an early age.

Flab that won't go away no matter how much I yell at it

Rosie Dunne by Cecila Ahern

Adding to Itty Bitty Crazy's delusion that I read a lot, I bring you another quote from the book I'm currently listening to. It's an amusing book set in Ireland...Girl Meets Boy, Girl is "just friends" with boy for most of her life, Boy moves to Boston, much heartbreak ensues...mostly brain candy.

Honestly, I don't feel like I "read" nearly as much as I used to. I don't commute nearly as much anymore, so my audio book consumption has plummeted over the last 18 months. And I'm far more likely to do Merl Reagle's Sunday Crossword in bed before I fall asleep. The New York Times Crossword? All I have to say is that Will Shortz is Satan.

I try to read. I still don't go in much for "important" works or hefty works or really much that makes me think. I go for entertainment. Occasionally, I find something that makes me go "hrmmm...".

My arm is much better, thanks. I did try to amputate my thumb again last night. It's been years...since at least 1997. I did quite a poor job at it, thankfully. I'm getting soft in my old age.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Maybe typing on my blackberry while walking up the stairs isn't such a good idea

The thought Debi had right before falling up the stairs

Yeah, I'm a moronic klutz. My hubby called while I was having lunch with Chris in a VERY noisy pancake house. When Chris dropped me off, I decided to call him back. Multi-tasker that I am, I didn't wait the 45 seconds to get to my desk. No, I started to type in my Blackberry password while walking up the stone stairs and apparently changing my sunglasses in for my regular ones (as evidenced by their position on the ground when I hit it). As I started to climb the stairs, I thought "You know, texting and walking up stairs could be bad." Sure enough, when I'm right? I'M RIGHT. I wasn't EXACTLY texting. I was trying to hit 6 little buttons in a row.

Anyway, I missed the top stair on the flight (as in I didn't realize I wasn't at the top) and there she goes. I only tripped UP the stairs, which is far better than the alternative, trust me. Stubbed my toe, tiny abrasion on my knee and hand, but I bent back my fingers on my right hand when I caught myself. And it all hurt VERY much.

A true and compassionate friend had this to say to me on IM:
Telling people you fell up a flight of stairs is pretty embarrassing, so when someone just asked me what happened to you, I told them you sprained your wrist while masturbating. You're welcome.

I spent a great deal of yesterday afternoon icing my hand, my forearm and my shoulder. I feel better now, so it's all good. But just so you know? I'm a klutz with very poor judgment.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Heavier than bad luck and twice as ugly

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz

I just finished this book. I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about it, but it was very well written. I just found out it won a Pulitzer and a few other prizes on the authors website. Cool.

It was a very unique book, told from several different points of view. The main character isn't just every-nerd, though every nerd out there could identify with him. It was about super-nerd. The guy that failed at everything that he thought was important to him. The stories of the Dominican Republic were vivid, and I found myself wincing at the violence of life there.

Worth reading and I'm glad I did. Perhaps I'll know later what I think...maybe the best books make you wonder about that for a while.

Monday, August 03, 2009


In the Wikipedia entry on Kleptocracy

I am currently listening to The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and one of the main themes is the ruling of the Dominican Republic by Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina. Trujillo was the dictator (though not necessarily president) from 1930 - 1961. At one point, the author describes the regime as a kleptocracy.

Not entirely sure what that meant, I googled it on my crackberry. It took me to the wiki page referenced above. Basically, it's a pejorative term which refers to the rulers as "thieves". Embezzling from their people to fund their own lifestyles. Ok, make sense.

Then I scroll down and see the entry "Narcokleptocracy". At first, I think I misunderstood it to say "Necrokelptocracy" so I thought maybe it was the dead stealing from the public? Then I realized it was "Narco" and thought, um...they try to embezzle from the country and fall asleep?

No, it would seem that it was a phrase coined to describe Manuel Noriega, who was never reported to have suffered from narcolepsy. It means a government of thieves involved in drug trafficking.

Now, I have a bit of an issue with this. The narcotics trade may be a scourge and it may have its corruption, but it IS a trade. It's a business. It's not about stealing, it's about buying and selling a product. It's a complicated issue, but it's pretty classic supply/demand thing. So, my only point is that one can have a kleptocracy and one can have the narcotics trade, but they seem kind of complimentary, not really parts of the same political theory. That's all I'm saying.

For browsing, there is a lot of interesting reading on the Forms of Government of Wikipedia. It's a time suck if you like that sort of thing.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

You want to touch these, too?

Ok, let me set the scene by saying: Best Office Depot trip EVER. Intrigued? Read on!

To escape the heat I moseyed on down to University Village to wander into Starbucks. I managed to first wander into a couple of other stores, but made my way into Office Depot. Those of you from Seattle might wonder why I would go to University Village, an OUTDOOR SHOPPING CENTER, to escape the heat. I have no excuse except that I went to the mall yesterday and walked out with too many new shirts.

Anyway, I had been thinking about checking out the new "durable" Post-It tabs to see if they'd work better for my day planner. I use them a tabs on the edge, and the current flags I'm using are a bit torn up. The package was $7 for 66 of them, and I didn't want to pay that price only to find them not sturdy enough.

So, I moseyed up to find someone to help me. When I asked the nice guy (I think his name was Darrin) if they had any open so I could touch one of them, he said "Huh, look at that" while he opened the package. Satisfied that they'd work for my purposes, I wandered back to the display to see if I had the best colors possible. You know, the important decisions. The Office Depot brand had one more color in the package, more total tabs in the package, and cost half as much. So, I wandered up with my choice and wound up at Darrin's register. I asked if he thought these would stand up just as well, at which point he asked "Do you want to touch these, too?"

Honestly, best offer I had today. I've always wanted to have a tall, dark, handsome fellow inquire if I'd like to touch his post-its. I liked them and I bought them.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

It’s a symphony of flavor, but I’m not sure which section is off key

The team of Debi & Justin working on a description for Trader Joe's Pumpernickel Pretzel Sticks

I told my friend Scarlett to come to my blog for entertainment, so it's time to get back to entertaining.

After I found the Original Ream-n-Klean at a Walgreen's near me, I went to work. Then, Chris and I went to lunch next door to Trader Joe's. So, after lunch, I stopped in to see what I had to buy, and well? I had to buy these some pumpernickel pretzel sticks. Not only did I share pipe cleaners, I shared pretzels with those near and dear to me at work. I brought one to Justin because boss-man has been known to make his own chocolate-dipped pretzels and bring them to his peons folks.

So, I gave one to Justin, who looked at it suspiciously...they actually look like teeny tiny cigars, which lead to a bastardization of the Freud quote more than once. He tried it, and the look on his face made it obvious he did not approve of the pretzel. He said "It is a symphony of flavor..." then paused and continued with something that wasn't funny and I've thus stricken it from mind. So I added "...but you're not sure which section is off key?" That? That's humor ladies and gents. I'm full of humor, amongst other things.

The Original Ream-n-Klean

Those of you who know me know that I usually have a cup of Starbucks Iced Tea nearby. Recently, they came out with the clear, insulated plastic cup in a 20 oz size. So, I use it.

The only downside to this setup is that tea tends to, um, clump in the straw and it can get a bit nasty after your 20th cup. So, I stopped by Walgreen's yesterday for some light bulbs and decided it was time to get some pipe cleaners. The only brand they had were Bryn Mawr Original Ream-N-Klean. No kidding? It Reams It Cleans It Scrubs AND It absorbs. Even though I have NO need for 90 of these little suckers, I decided that the BEST. PRODUCT. EVER. must be mine. So, I doled them out to people at work.

They feel as disturbing as they sound...it's like barbed wire with a little chenille in it. Very odd. But it did a good job getting the crud out of my straw, so mission accomplished with a smile on my face.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I have many peeves. I don't like to play favorites.

Response to one of those silly Facebook questionnaires that asked me to name my pet peeve

I don't actually think I have that many "peeves". Most of the things that really annoy me are things I should have done but wasn't paying attention to. You know, ignoring the descending gas gauge until I HAVE to fill up my car on the way to work? Not looking at my list and thus not getting some staple like OIL that I should've gotten a week ago? My loving mutts hiding my sunglasses case under the couch because I didn't zip up my purse? Oh, even better. This morning? I left my purse on the roof of the car in front of the house.

There are things that piss me the f*ck off, but those are TYPICALLY not genericifiable (like that? I made that up). It's not really kind to say "So-and-so REALLY pisses me off" on the off-chance so-and-so will run across your blog and make life hell for someone you like.

This comment WAS plagiarized by a friend that did the questionnaire after me. She didn't change several answers, but damn it, this one is GOOD. Imitation...sincere flattery...blah blah blah. Have we met? I want the friggin' credit where it's due, man. ME. ME. ME.

Anyway, I think I just like to bitch and moan in general because it amuses me. Until the point where I start repeating myself (either in general subject or specifics), then Chris hears me say "Damn, I annoy the shit out of myself." Very diplomatically, he does not comment at these times. Just for that, lunch is on him tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

There's Not Enough Room in this World for my Pain...

"Ghost" by the Indigo Girls
I admit it. I'm waxing a bit melancholic. This song has always referred to only one person for me, even though it's a somewhat universal lament for young love lost. It's also one of those songs you can play on the freeway with your windows rolled up...belting at the top of your lungs.

I've got a few songs that go along with this one. We've all got our "OH THE DRAMA" lists. Some of us have it in a playlist called "Oh the Drama". It's one of those small lists for me so far. It contains:
    "Every Rose Has It's Thorn" by Poison
    "Song Remembers When" by Trisha Yearwood
    "You Must Love Me" by Madonna
    "Desperado" by the Eagles (Yeah, I don't like the Linda Ronstadt version)
    "Two Outta Three Ain't Bad" by Meat Loaf (Like Meat Loaf would be missing from ANY list?)
    "Separate Lives" by Phil Collins
    "Same Auld Lang Syne" by Dan Fogelberg
    "Hold on to the Nights" by Richard Marx
    "What Might Have Been" by Little Texas
There are more, but I seem to be seem to have upwards of 12,000 mp3s, so it takes a while to find stuff AND remember to put it in the appropriate list.

Perhaps tomorrow, I'll pull out something poppy and summery.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Can I buy Europe on pump 4?

Glitch hits Visa users with $23 quadrillion charge

Go. Read this for yourself.

Did you go read it? What are you waiting for. I'll wait here.

Ok, good. I have some thoughts.
  • He racked up this total buying cigarettes. The surgeon general says they're bad for your heart...she just didn't think it would induce cardiac arrest with the price tag.
  • It's a freakin' pre-paid debit card. How much debt can you get into with a Pre. Paid. Debit. Card.
  • They kept him on hold for 2 hours and then graciously said they'd reverse the charge AND the overdraft fee? Mighty compassionate of them. Send them the rehabilitation bill.
  • How quickly do you think he smoked that really expensive pack of cigarettes waiting for Visa to screw with him?
  • What comes after the American Express Super Secret Uranium-238 Card? Wait, I know the answer to that one. It's The Plum Card. I know when I think about how to market to businesses in this adverse economic climate, my thoughts turn to fruit.
On the other hand, it's one way to pay back all that bail-out money we gave to the banks!

Monday, July 13, 2009

A transparent craving on the part of the authors to appear likable

So the picture? From an icon of a commenter on Politico. When I image Googled "Transparent Craving", it was one of only 3 images that came up. And I like it.

So, in theory, this quote is from Loitering with Intent by Muriel Spark. The problem is that it was in the preface of another book that I didn't notate. I thought it was in An Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England, but in the nifty little "Look Inside!" feature on Amazon, I don't see it. So, I can neither confirm nor deny with certainty it's origin.

Tangentially? I was really looking forward to The Arsonist's Guide... I know there are still people out there who refuse to leave a book unfinished. I am not one of them. If it hasn't caught me in the first 100 or so pages, I've got to be really bored to continue. I figure life is too damned short to read/watch/listen to crap. If my answer to "Do I give a rat's ass how this ends?" is anything other than "yes"...next! That book was like that. As the Bastard Neil would put it, a lot of navel gazing. Or maybe it was something about foot gazing, I'm not sure. You get the gist. Debi thought the book sucked ass. However, Loitering with Intent might be good.

The quote spoke to me. I guess I feel like I've always had a transparent craving to be liked...I suppose some folks will look at that and laugh, so perhaps it isn't SO transparent. I do so desperately want to be liked and always have. I suppose I've just come a bit more to terms with the fact that I'm an acquired taste with some HIGHLY annoying habits (even to myself). Doesn't mean I don't spend time in therapy over it, but this is Seattle. If you're not in therapy, you're weird. So next time you see me, make sure you tell me how likable I am. Not you, Mom. You're biased.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I blame Civilization

Mike and I have been on a game binge. For a few years now, we've been addicted to "casual games". Those are comparatively short games that you typically download from a site like Yahoo! Games or Shockwave. You may be insane about it for a few days, but it doesn't keep going. Unlike say, World of Warcraft, which I hear you can play for years.

We're on a GAME binge. It started when I bought The Sims 2. A couple of days later, it seemed only fair to find something for Mike. He'd tried a demo of Neverwinter Nights, so he picked that up. Mike sorta dropped games like that after Dungeon Siege (also known as Dungeon Crack) came between us once too often.

Anyway, I hated the Sims. There's no goal. It's your job to make these whiny little f*cks happy. I don't care about that in real life, why would I want to do it in a game. So, I went and picked up Civilization IV. And, I blame it for not being good about updating this blog.

I'm not used to being slow on the game uptake. I'm good at games like this. I think the issue with Civilization is that you need STRATEGY. Me? I'm a brilliant tactician, but strategy is beyond me. Give me a job to do, and I'm all over it. Make me think about the politics involved or worse yet, THE BIG PICTURE? No. I haven't made it all the way through a game yet. I understand why people get addicted to this game. It's amazingly complex and detailed. The AI is pretty impressive and there are a lot of folks that play online. But I don't think it's going to last much longer for me. Especially if I don't feel like I'm winning. I don't like to lose for the sake of a learning experience. I know you probably find that hard to believe and all.

The other thing I blame is not being at work enough. Honestly? I'm just not as witty when I don't interact with others. Mike and I are busy staring at our computers, and frankly, the dogs don't inspire too many funny comments.

But, I'm working on it. Don't stop reading. Those of you who still do.

Monday, July 06, 2009

The power of positive thinking…also known as denial

John Henson on Wipeout

Mike is irrationally amused by this show. To the point that he convulses through most of it. It's essentially 24 goofy people taking on an impossible obstacle course for $50,000. The Japanese have been doing it for years. There are a lot of good shots of the human body in positions nature never intended in super slo-mo.

Mike wants to go on the course. There's not much chance to go on the show since you (1)have to live in California and (2)must be able to at least FAKE outgoing.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Fascism by proxy

David Sullivan characterizing his homeowner's association

Itty Bitty Crazy should be yippy skippy over the fact that I have ALREADY queued up tomorrow's post. I could still be sitting here trying to figure out Civilization IV which may, in fact, be too complex for me to wanna waste my free time on.

So, David's homeowner's association doesn't seem to like bird feeders. Bird feeders, people. So, when David (who is obviously a subversive) hung one on his deck? They. Took. Action. Like all dictators, they reported it to the management company so that their hands would not be dirtied.

Bird Feeders? Where I come from, homeowner's associations exist to make sure you don't park that 1962 30' camper in your driveway and mow your lawn occasionally. I've HEARD that they care what color you paint your house, but face it, most people that live in a covenant community aren't creative enough to paint outside the lines...at least where I'm from. A friggin' bird feeder, people? Unless it has neon lights and plays Boom Boom in the middle of the night, what's the problem???