30 April, 2006

National Smile Month

Did you know that April is National Smile Month? Enjoy the last day of the happiest month of the year with some lame jokes...

Two peanuts were walking down a spooky road at night... One was assaulted.

A termite walks into a bar room and asks, "Is the bar tender here?"

"Waiter! This coffee tastes like mud."
"Yes sir, it's fresh ground."

What do you call a sleepwalking nun?
Roamin' Catholic.

Why can't a chicken coop have more than 2 doors?
Because if it had 4 doors it would be a chicken sedan.

Famous last words of a Mafia hitman: "Who put the violin in the violin case?"

What's brown and sounds like a bell? Dung.

What do you call spending the afternoon with a cranky rabbit?
A bad hare day.

Where do kings keep their armies?
In their sleevies.

Why don't anteaters get sick?
Because they're full of anty-bodies.

What do you call a sheep with no legs?
A cloud

What do cows do for entertainment?
They rent moovies!

If a turtle doesn't have a shell, is it naked or homeless?

How do you stop a fish from smelling?
Cut its nose off

Why was the Energizer Bunny arrested?
He was charged with battery.

Why do gorillas have big nostrils?
Because they have big fingers!

What was the centerpiece at the annual anorexia and bulimia convention?
A cake jumping out of a girl!

Fruitless Frivolity

Today was one of those days. Not one of those "I shouldn't have gotten out of bed" days, but one of those days where everyone engages in complete silliness for no apparent reason. Today, we built a castle.
We built a castle out of the 9" x 12" boxes used for recycling office paper. First we had to assemble the boxes (a whole lot of fold edge and insert tab A into slot B). That was a legitimate office task done inbetween phone calls. Then we had all of these boxes taking up space at the Help Desk waiting to be put at each workstation. So I built a wall. People would ask what I was doing and I would say, "I'm building a literal wall to go along with my metaphorical one." And when I was done walling myself in, Sandy borrowed the little flags from our training room and Melissa loaned me the frogs to be my sentries. And I made a sign. And, in true princess fashion, I stood within my castle walls and waved to my subjects.

Alas, 6:00 rolled around all too soon. Ginger came into work and needed to get to her desk (which was inside the castle). So we played Godzilla and knocked it all over. And then Beth took the boxes and left one, like the box fairy, at each position. And then there were 45 left over. So we disassembled them.

Some castle stats:
65 boxes
8 folds each
6 flags
1 paper cut
1 bleeding cuticle
only 1 band aid

And believe it or not, in that picture I'm standing completely upright. It truly was like playing with building blocks for grown-ups! I bet Milo would be jealous if he knew. Let's not tell him...

29 April, 2006

Absentee Blogger

I haven't been around the past few days, mostly because I didn't have much to say. Scott is working a wonky shift this week, and we're seeing eachother an hour in the morning and an hour at night. Work is more of the SSDD. I found out that I didn't win PIE. No shock there, but there was a secret part of me that really hoped I'd get it, and I spent that day at work moping.

Last night, Scott made me some chicken bits so that I could make something besides spaghetti-o's for dinner tonight. So we'll be having fettuccine alfredo with chicken & broccoli. Of course, I'll be eating it for lunch in about 10 minutes, and again for dinner in about 8 hours. And Scott may have some when he gets home tonight. Or he'll just eat hot dogs. It's hard to say for sure.

We got one of those new-fangled steam-in-the-bag bags of broccoli. It was pretty cool to watch -- the bag puffs up in the microwave like a bag of popcorn. Hopefully it tastes ok.

*sigh* I need some excitement. But let me rephrase: I need some excitement that comes stress-free. I don't need any stress. I need an inner tube and a lazy river.

27 April, 2006

Let's Take a Jog Around the Country!

Today we grocery shopped, and drove an hour down I-4 to take ShirleyMom out for her be-lated birthday. We watched Idol (yay! Chris was in the top two and Kellie finally got the boot). Scott made Chex mix. And that's really the long and the short of it. But elsewhere in the blog world, amazing/funny/great things are happening!

Over at PostSecret, an update from Reese Butler:

Dear Frank,

Ten days ago, when you shared my message on the PostSecret Blog that the HopeLine needed urgent help, the most amazing thing happened - over 600 people responded with donations totaling over $30,000.00!

At our darkest hour, days from filing for bankruptcy, all of you saved us. We appreciate all your support; every dollar, every personal note, every thought and prayer are important to us.

This is a miracle.
Yay! 600 people! I'm so proud to be a member of the human race!

Meanwhile, Laura over at Adventures in Juggling took Daniel in for surgery #9, this time to remove his G tube.

They say it heals and closes much like any other body piercing...meaning it "should" close up on its own in the next few days. Sometimes they will leak and the healing is slowed down taking up to six weeks and sometimes they never close at all requiring a couple stitches to close the hole up...

In the meantime, we are home and tired. Little man is doing okay until he bends over or bumps his belly then he remembers he hurts.
Yay Daniel! And of course, there's a plug in this entry to support her March of Dimes Walk America team. They're up to $580 in pledges now.

Karen of the Naked Ovary and her husband went and got re-fingerprinted at the Immigration office. Sounds thrilling, doesn't it? I guess this is what it's like when you're in the throes of international adoption.

Everyone blinked twice at our applications and then looked at us and said "American citizens?" which was subtext for "what the fuck are you guys doing in an immigration office?" So I directed them to the "Orphan Fingerprint Referral Letter" that was attached to the form. And then they all squinted at our appointment date, which was listed in big black font as "Tuesdar April 18." (Yes, Tuesdar.) Then they looked at us, pointing at the date. Subtext: "Um, fuckers, it's not Tuesdar, and it's not April 18."

"Well, if you read the SMALL PRINT," I said to each of them, pointing at the small print below the appointment date, "you will see that it says we can come ANY Wednesday AFTER Tuesdar..."

She writes the way that I see the world -- with a continuous inner monologue that amuses me through the most mundane situations. She's going through some tough times right now playing the waiting game, and her blog is totally real and raw. And her commenters are hilarious.

And finally there's Brenda over at 20 Little Toes. As the title suggests, she has twin infants (starting to teethe...ouch!). I started reading her at the end of her hellish pregnancy. And now her blog is full of adorable baby pictures that I swoon over daily. But that's not what caught my eye today. Apparently she has a friend or acquaintance who is having difficulty with a shady automotive repair place. (you should really read the whole post -- I've abridged it quite a bit)

LONE STAR ENGINE on ANN ST in DALLAS TX, 214-821-1105 put a rebuilt engine in my car in the fall of 2005. I took it back to them for various problems in the next few months, but after JUST 4-1/2 MONTHS that engine they gave me BLEW again!

...they told us a MINIMUM of a DOZEN times that it would be ready on such-n-such day only to find out that it STILL wasn’t running right and they needed to do more work...

...they kept my car for TWO MONTHS, and they gave it back to me in tatters.

...I feel like they screwed us out of $2500 for the first engine repair because it blew so quickly, and I feel like they screwed us out of thousands of more dollars because we had to trade it in and absorb the negative equity.

Wow... I feel like I have a soul-sister in Texas! I just can't help but wonder if my own buddies at REMANUFACTURED TRANSMISSION have kin-folk in Dallas! After all, I've had my own share of rants on this very topic. (11 separate entries in 2006 alone!) But at least her car wasn't broken into and egged on the inside!

I'm so glad I have my blogs to read every day. I feel like they're all part of my big virtual family. And I'm glad that I can read them in the privacy of my own home, so that when I laugh out loud (that whole rebuilt engine thing hit really close to home!) or cry over the plight of total strangers, no one knows but me and Scott... until I share it with the world!

26 April, 2006

Ameircan Idol - Final Six

I finally voted last night. Multiple times. While packing boxes.

Chris Daughtry is far beyond anyone I've ever seen on the AI stage before. He's been in the bottom three for the past two weeks, and I'm worried about that. So I voted. Multiple times.

Ask Scott - when he sings, I swoon. I've never swooned over any Idol contestant before. I want him to win, and I will buy his album.

Last night, they were working with Andrea Bocelli, and his manager(?) told Chris he was singing from the throat too much, and had him lie on the floor so that he'd be forced to sing from his diaphragm. That one lesson really made a difference in his performance last night - more control, more power, more swoon.

And so I voted.

(oh yeah - there were five other performances last night. Taylor and Kellie were not very good. Paris and Katharine were their usual good quality, and Elliott was pretty good too. Chris was still the best)

Who Invests in their PAST?

I spent $72 at wal mart today, the bulk of which was spent on 6 storage tubs. I looked at Scott when the cashier read the total and said, "who invests that much in their PAST?"

Anyway, I was amazingly productive today. I took the whole giant pile of boxes and turned it into this:

(a slightly less giant pile of plastic boxes)

Actually, the big one on the right is less than half-full (but I'll fill it up with other random crap that's laying around). And the one on the left is totally filled with stuffed animals from a cardboard box in the bedroom. I threw out a lot of the "treasures" when Mom came to visit. There was a lot of, "do you want this?" "no" "me neither." And into the trash it went. I also pared down my collection of high school newspapers to one of each issue... with the exception of the one I won the ASPA investigative journalism award for and the 'Class of 96' Senior edition.

Now would also be a great time to mention that I fan I am of the Space Bag phenomenon. In the bag below, there are 4 formal dresses, 3 middle/high school jackets, 4 baby dresses, 2 blankets, and my dance recital costume (on the top because the sequins make me smile). I also bought a slightly smaller bag to put my wedding dress in. I figure it's time to put it into somewhat permanent storage.

And of course, now that the majority of the boxes have been emptied of their contents (I still have that box of naked Cabbage Patch Kids that I think is going to the Good Will), I have a huge trash pile. Notice that the old TV still hasn't made it downstairs? That's on the agenda for tomorrow. I wish I had lightened the picture a little so that you could better see that the bottom box on the left is actually full of flattened boxes.

And so tomorrow we grocery shop. And take out the trash. And vacuum. And, depending on the time I have left and the condition of my back (which is currently angry with me over today's exploits), I may tackle the other pile of cardboard boxes in the corner of the bedroom.

...and perhaps 7 days from today, when I once again have a day off, I'll get to relax a little. Because that certainly wasn't on the agenda for this week!

24 April, 2006


They put up the new postcards on PostSecret on Sundays. Last night when I got home from work, the first site I went to was that one. I just can't wait to get my fix, dontcha know. At the bottom of the page was the following e-mail:

Dear Frank,

I received your Federal Express envelope today and deposited your generous donation of $4,000.00. Thank you.

As I explained to you on the phone yesterday, we are in desperate need of raising an additional $1,000.00 in the next 7 days in order to keep 1(800)SUICIDE operational. I would not ask you to do this if it were not urgent but could you share our need with those who visit your website?

People can go to and make an online donation or they can contact me directly, if they prefer.Thanks again Frank. I would not make this plea if it were not so critical.

Warm regards,

Reese Butler,
Founder, Kristin Brooks Hope Center
888 16th NW, Suite 680
Washington DC 20006
p. 703.924.6167

I knew the proceeds from the PostSecret book went to the KBHC, and I knew that it was associated with 1-800-SUICIDE, but that's about all I knew. When I read the message I thought maybe I should check them out. Here's some stuff I found from their website:

Since the suicide of his wife Kristin in April 1998, KBHC Founder Reese Butler has been on a personal crusade. His mission the past four years has been to offer HOPE and the option to LIVE to those in the deepest emotional pain...

...the launching of the Kristin Brooks Hope Center and its primary program, the National Hopeline Network 1-800-SUICIDE. Former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher dedicated this national crisis hotline network in May 1999. It connects people who are depressed or suicidal -- or those who are
concerned about someone they love — automatically to a CONTACT USA or AAS certified crisis center.

While the idea of a suicide hotline is not a new one, the challenge of creating a national network and connecting our country’s crisis centers under a single, easy-to-remember, toll-free telephone was a daunting task. Heretofore, neither government agencies nor non-profit organizations had ever attempted such a project.

People in crisis generally don't have the energy or ability to take on a long search for help. When those looking for support dial 1.800.SUICIDE they are seamlessly connected to an available certified crisis center nearest to their calling location. While it’s seemingly a simple concept, the Network is elegant and effective when put into action. Behind the scenes there are significant computer and telephony infrastructures working in concert to provide help within 20 to 30 seconds of a call being placed.

Of course, I ended up donating. How could I not? I had some trouble with their credit card form, and e-mailed Reese Butler and figured I wouldn't hear back from him until the work week started. He actually wrote back just a few hours after I sent my message -- on a Sunday -- to clear up the problem, and said they can also take checks. If any of you out there have $5 or $500 to spare, please consider this organization.

(and if you decide to donate off of their website, don't bother filling in the information on the front page. click on the PayPal link and go from there. PayPal is going to ask you for your credit card information again anyway.)

23 April, 2006

Photo Printer

I made a goof of epic proportions today.

A few weeks back when I was creating my "ancient history" family photo album, I lost one of the pictures. I opened up the top of the scanner to put more pictures in, and one stuck to the top and then fell behind the printer. I figured it was safe back there, and at the time there were boxes and boxes in front of the printer stand and I couldn't dig it out.

Today I ordered something online for my mom for mother's day (just a trinket, really... don't get too excited) and decided to print out the order form. As the printer was printing, all of a sudden my missing picture popped out... covered in text!

I wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry. Actually, my first instinct was to scan it and blog about it... but a) then Mom would know about her super gift-to-be and b) Scott realized that the ink rubs off with minimal effort. So two paper towels later, the picture was restored to almost mint condition. However, I still wanted to re-create the image so that I'll always remember what happens when you leave pictures on the scanner.

And while I'm sharing pictures, here's today's newest cat-in-the-box picture.

Milo is absolutely absurd sometimes. Here he is actually sitting in a box that's the width and length of a DVD, and maybe 4 or 5 inches high. He sat in there for a good long while, just acting all dignified pretending to be comfortable in such a strange position.

Actually, I feel a little bad for him. He's absolutely surrounded by boxes, but they are all too full for him to make himself comfortable. And this is his consolation prize.

21 April, 2006

Walk a Mile in Dress Shoes

I don't wear heels. I own heels, but wear them less than once a month. They are "interview shoes," not worth mutilating my feet for on a daily basis. There's a lot of walking potential in my day-to-day work, and it's never a good idea to do that much walking in heels... or in stocking feet.

Anyway, I do still wear dress shoes - ones without laces or thick soles. And that makes things interesting when I decide to go out and walk during my lunch break. I have an hour for lunch, and last night I was dining alone (darn Scott for working!), and decided to go walk around the lot during the second half of my break.

There I was, keeping quite a pace to Pump It! by the Black Eyed Peas, Walk Away by Kelly Clarkson, and some other up-tempo songs (oh how I LOVE this MP3 player!), walking up and down the rows of the parking lot, and the only time I could even tell I was wearing dress shoes was inbetween songs when I could hear the click click click of my shoes on the pavement.

I was out for about 20 minutes, and I have no idea how far I walked, but I'd guess somewhere around 1.2ish miles. How fun! But this morning my feet are a little sore. So I'm going to throw an old pair of sneakers in my trunk so that the next time I get the walking bug I'll be able to go forth and conquer the lot without inflicting permanent damage on my joints.

Anyway, I guess I'm not recommending that anyone walk a mile in my shoes... not even me.

19 April, 2006


My gas tank was basically on fumes when I came home from work on Monday night. I, however, am a procrastinator, and decided to wait to fill up my tank. Besides, gas was already up to $2.76 - how much could it possibly go up in two days?

Seven cents a gallon!

My most expensive fill-up ever - just under $30 for a tank of regular unleaded.

Note to self: Add 'buy a hybrid' to my lottery winnings wish list.

18 April, 2006

Tax on the Stupid

The same lotto jackpot that my work friends and I failed to win last week is now up to an $82 million drawing tomorrow night. You know what really sucks about that? There's a lot of out-of-state people in the area right now for spring break, and I'd be really bummed if some rich dysfunctional family from Suburbia wins my money!

Anyway, Scott has a work meeting tomorrow, and I have to take my car out for gas, so I'm going to stop and buy a couple bucks worth of tickets (I think I have a card of 5 ticket selections in my glove compartment already). What am I going to do with my winnings?

1) give $100,000 (minus taxes) to anyone who leaves a comment in this entry telling what you would do with the money. (offer expires 11:59 pm e.d.t. 4/19/06) who's a comment whore now?? lol

2) pay off all debts owed by me and Scott

3) "retire"

4) buy a modest house for my cats and hire them a full-time nanny

5) cruise around the world (since Scott hates to fly)

Then when we get home we'll find a house, invest, and figure out what to do with the rest of our lives.

Shining HAPPY People?

My chosen career path (no, I'm not really calling my job a career) has lead me to form a theory:

Happy, well-adjusted families do not spend their holidays at theme parks.

In my own experience, my family spent two separate spring breaks at Disney. Both were in my parents' last few years of marriage, and one of those was actually because we came down to visit my great-grandmother.

Parents drag their families to Florida hoping that the "magic" in the air will fix their problems, or at least while they are here they expect to forget about their problems. But they get to the Orlando airport and look around and realize:
a) it's hot down here!
b) wow - there's a lot of people!
c) my luggage is missing
d) my teenager still has his iPod super glued to himself

And then they get to their hotel and realize why they paid peak rates for their room:
a) wow - there's a lot of people!
b) the hotel is booked and all they have left is smoking-optional accomodations
c) the restaurant is booked and they aren't taking walk-ins.
d) my teenager still has his iPod super glued to himself

And then they set foot in their theme park of choice. As the parents pause to feel their stress wisked away by magical fairies, they:
a) have strollers slam into the backs of their legs
b) watch their kids run off to the thrill rides, but not before they realize...
c) the only thing that has been wisked away is the money from their pockets, as the teenagers become specks in the distance, and
d) wow - there's a lot of people!

At the end of the day, these people don't get what they were expecting at all. They get their families back exactly the way they were. Only now, the kids have been cut off from their friends and their video games, the parents don't get to escape to work for a third of the day, and they are all crammed into one tiny room. "Quality time" is what the family needs, but not what they get in this week of lines, fast food, and short tempers.

... and then they call and tell me that I have ruined their vacation. And I apologize and let them believe that. Because they aren't ready to admit that their family is fragmented beyond repair.

16 April, 2006

Postcards from the Edge

I've been kicking around ideas to send to PostSecret for a while now. I actually bought a Florida postcard with an alligator on it, and was going to write "I wish all the tourists would get eaten," but I never got around to actually putting it together.

And then my life took a series of interesting turns, and I no longer felt compelled to complain about the tourons (although dealing with them over Spring Break is causing me to reconsider the alligator card!). Now I can complain about my family. Well, step-family. Here's some of the cards I've considered. Let me know what you think:

(each phrase below represents a different idea, and would be accompanied by a picture of Lady Tremaine - Cinderella's wicked stepmother)

* Cinderella was always my favorite fairy tale. I would have picked another if I knew I would end up with my own wicked stepmother.

* This woman has NOTHING on my stepmother

* Are there any nice stepmothers?

Or perhaps a collage of various wicked stepmothers from film - Lady Tremaine, the Wicked Queen from Snow White, Baroness Rodmilla De Ghent from Ever After - and a picture of my own W.S.M. with a bar over her eyes. No words necessary.

Well, I guess the good news is that traditionally stepfathers are not wicked. Except in Lifetime movies. But that's another entry for another day.

Happy Easter!

14 April, 2006

Zoom Out

Well Mom, you were close... but not quite right. It's not Larry the Cucumber, it's Darth Tater!

Honestly, why would there be any Veggie Tales things in my house? :-P

For anyone who is late joining the party, just scroll down one entry.

12 April, 2006

Tiny Photo Shoot

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Take a picture of something in extreme close-up -- so close it's hard to tell what you're looking at. Ask people to guess. On Thursday, reveal what you've photographed.

Obviously, I'm a little late with the Monday photo shoot this week. But I have a giant excuse. Anyway, I guess I'll be revealing my zoomed-out picture on Friday. I dedicate this Photo Shoot to Scott, since this is something of his that was, up until yesterday, on display in our living room. Now it's in a box in our living room. Hopefully soon it will be on display somewhere else real soon.


What's with the title of this entry? That's the noise I'm making every few minutes. It's not so much an "ouch," which I associate with sharp pain. This is the low-grade all-over muscle ache and bruises on my hands associated with carrying a giant tv upstairs, building a new TV stand and carrying the old one down to the dumpster (after demolishing it).
On the bright side, we have a new TV. We were able to finally watch Chronicles of Narnia last night (we were saving it until we could see it). And we were even able to read the FBI warning at the beginning!

And check out the stand. I put it together almost by myself. Scott was my helper elf, but he carried that part up the stairs by himself and needed a break! I'm rather impressed with my ability to do "carpentry by numbers."

The TV, in case you were wondering, weighs about 115 lbs. It's so big that it wouldn't fit into Scott's car in the box... and there are no hand-holds built in. We almost died carrying it up stairs, or maybe it only felt that way because I was the one going backwards!

Today's project: grocery shopping. I have a funny feeling many of our purchases will be dictated by weight.

10 April, 2006

Drama and Frustration

...courtesy of

I pre-ordered the Chronicles of Narnia 2-disc DVD from specifically because it came with a $20 gift card. Otherwise, I could've gotten it from Wal Mart on the day it came out and not had to wait or pay shipping. So I got my gift card today (which consisted of an e-mail with a code on it) and promptly logged on to get the purchase I've been waiting for for months - the Mickey chrome Mix Stick. It was out of stock at Christmas, and I was so excited to finally get my hands on it.

Sadly, Disney was thwarting my efforts. When I tried to process my order, it was only taking $10 off instead of my allotted $20. There it was in the fine print at the bottom of the gift card e-mail:
* Special Offer Gift Card Restrictions:Special Offer Gift Card expires 11:59 pm PT, April 24, 2006. Limit one Special Offer Gift Card per order. Qualifying purchase based on pre-tax, post-discount amount and excludes Shipping & Handling charges, gift cards, animation art, Walt Disney Classics Collection, Disney electronics, DVDs, videos, CDs and cassettes, video games, CD-ROMs, You-Design-It Tees, books, sing-alongs, read-along, pre-sales, gift boxes, Pooh Friendship Wishbands and items not in stock. Cannot be combined with other offers. No adjustments to prior purchases. We reserve the right to cancel your Special Offer Gift Card if you return or exchange the pre-ordered DVD or UMD. Merchandise must be exchanged for identical item or returned at discounted price with valid packing slip. Special Offer Gift Card valid only on orders placed online at Not valid on phone orders or purchases from Disney catalog, Disney Store outlets, or Disney Store retail locations. Special Offer Gift Card may not be redeemed for cash. Special Offer Gift Card may not be sold, altered, duplicated or copied and will not be replaced if lost, stolen or corrupted. Use of Special Offer Gift Card is acceptance of its terms. This offer may be canceled or modified at any time due to system error, fraud or other unforeseen problem. Void where prohibited.

Oops! I couldn't believe I had failed to read the fine print at the bottom of the promotional e-mail. What a dufus! And to tell you the truth, I really didn't think I was that stupid. It turns out, I'm not. The fine print at the bottom of the e-mail didn't mention any restrictions on what you could use the gift card for. So I called them. I talked to a wonderful woman who was able to give me $20 off the purchase and processed it over the phone.

Something I love about Disney as a whole is that it empowers its front-line people to solve problems. And that's exactly what she did. So, while I was frustrated and disappointed with the lack of continuity, in the end I got exactly what I wanted: my very own purse-sized MP3 player for $20 off. Yay!

09 April, 2006

Ducks in a Row

I wasn't carrying my camera. That's how I knew something interesting would happen today. Scott and I had to sign in "an immediate family member" this morning, and then we went to Boatwright's for breakfast (everybody together: mmm...banana stuffed french toast...). On the way home, we were driving past the back entrance of the Summer Bay Resort and there was a momma duck with her 8 babies crossing the road. So Scott stops, the people going the opposite direction stop, and then the goofy rent-a-cop from Summer Bay comes jogging out in the road, probably to "direct traffic."

This guy looked so happy to have a reason to get out of his guard shack. And of course, this gave me cause to ridicule: "Sorry folks... lost my ducks... just can't keep them all in a row." And Scott busted out laughing. And I thought I was just amusing myself.

Sorry there's no "family picture" to share. When will I learn??

A Night of Daydreaming

Tonight wasn't really as bad as we were anticipating. Seems like the luggage guys were actually prepared for the onslaught. It was actually pleasant, and we had some fun in our down-time.

Twelve of us went in on a lottery pool tonight ($42 million... which, after taxes and taking half off for the lump sum ends up at about $875,000 each) and we had fun spending our imaginary money. First, of course, was the limo ride to Tallahassee with an open bar. We were going to invite two of our favorite reporters from WFTV to chronicle our journey: Berndt Peterson (whose parents named him after the first note of porno music) and Gustavo Almodovar (just to hear him say his name over and over again).

After the requisite buying of cars (and the fiery demolition of my current car), we talked about quitting our jobs by calling the call-in voicemail and saying "I'm calling in F.U." or "I'm calling in filthy rich," or "this is John, Jamie, Jim, Mary, etc. and we're calling in FOREVER."

Then John reminded me that that much money can buy a lot of revenge. And a plan for my money was born. I'm going to buy the two houses on either side of a certain person's house and Scott and I will live in one, and we'll move my mom into the other. We'll constantly be visiting eachother, and having family barbecues every night possible. Perhaps we'll paint our houses crazy colors. I also plan to install some sort of projection system out in front of one of the houses that will show giant family pictures from my childhood on the wall of the house. Maybe we'll employ Mom as a social worker and turn one house into a halfway house for wayward prostitutes. Oh, what a gift we will be to the community!

Granted, if I'm going to buy two houses, I'm going to have to keep my job. But somehow it all seems worth it! But enough about my plans for imaginary money. What do you think of my plans for imaginary money?

08 April, 2006

Bad Moon Rising

We were warned about 4 days ago that today at work is going to be bad. Today we are expecting a record number of people to use our airport shuttle, and are bracing for a record number of complaints about lost luggage.

I was scheduled to be at the Help Desk tonight, reading my book and answering the occasional call. But Ginger had a vacation day that didn't quite make it onto our calendar. So now instead of being on the desk, I am the one with the cordless phone who troubleshoots everyone's issues and manager requests. And there's going to be a lot of issues and manager requests!

I told Ginger that every time I get a manager request, I'm going to send her an e-mail saying, "damn you!" Of course, then I'll probably get in trouble with the company's IT people. Instead I plan to copy & paste all of the manager requests as they come in and e-mail them to her one by one. She'll get a good laugh when she comes back tomorrow. And I'll feel a little better about my unfortunate change of position.

07 April, 2006


Scalzi's Weekend Assignment this week deals with one of my favorite things: gifts!

So, here's the missus. She's got a birthday coming up, and honestly, I haven't the slightest clue what to get her. So I am utilizing the incredibly awesome might of AOL Journals to get me out of a scrape!

Weekend Assignment #106: Suggest a really cool birthday gift for my wife. By which I mean -- if you're a woman, what would you want for a birthday gift, and if you're a man, what would you get for your significant other?

Now, here are the ground rules:
1. Money is not necessarily an object, but, come on, be reasonable.
2. Don't suggest anything that Krissy couldn't unwrap in public.
3. Your gift idea doen't actually have to be something you can buy -- if you want to suggest something intangible, go ahead.
4. Don't tell Krissy I'm doing this. Like, shhhhh.

I must say, this necklace is the only piece of jewelery I've ever lusted after. OK, maybe lusted is the wrong word. But I love it. It featured prominently on Elle Woods in the beginning of Legally Blonde, and I saw it up close and personal on a woman when I was doing bag checks about a year later. I actually said "hey - that's the necklace that that girl wears in that movie!" And she knew exactly what I was talking about.

Anyway, it's from Tiffany & Co. and for the very un-Tiffany price of $295, it could be yours... or Krissy's... or mine. Actually, I'm not a jewelery person. And I know I would never wear it enough to make it worth the price tag. But I still love it and hope to some day go to the Tiffany & Co. at the Millennia Mall and try it on.


Extra Credit: How good of a job do you do in getting your spouse/significant other gifts they like? I'm way too random. I find things like foot massagers and subscriptions to online games and think "ooh - perfect!" I'm blessed to have a spouse who pretends to love everything I buy for him.

06 April, 2006

Random TV Observations

Katie Couric
Am I the only one who doesn't really take her seriously? Of all the morning female anchors, she's the one I most see as her co-host's little sister. I can't see tuning in to watch the evening news delivered by a cheerleader. Give me Diane Sawyer or Elizabeth Vargas any day. On a slight tangent, I got a call yesterday (6 hour OT shift...woo hoo) from a man who wanted to know when Katie was going to leave ABC. I told him she's currently on NBC and he laughed at himself. It was good fun.

South Park
I watched South Park religiously during its first season. We all got together on Wednesday nights and watched it, drunk off our butts for the most part. The next year, I was hanging with a different circle and couldn't sit through an episode. I dismissed it as animated potty humor that just wasn't funny sober.

A week or two ago I was playing on the computer with Comedy Central on the TV playing behind me. South Park came on and I actually found myself listening to it and laughing. (it was the Isaac Hayes blow-off episode where Chef joins a child molesting cult) And last night I was laying in bed reading a book waiting for The Daily Show to come on, and South Park was parodying Family Guy and free speech, among other things.

The show, it seems, has gotten past saying "shit" 100 times just for the sake of saying it or having entire storylines based on a talking turd. Heck, they just won a Peabody. I'm not going to make any plans to watch South Park, but I'll probably stop avoiding it all the time.

American Idol
Since I was working last night, I didn't get to watch the elimination show. Scott e-mailed me the play-by-play, and I was really surprised at the bottom three: Paris, Elliot, and Mandisa. I thought Ace would be back down there, along with Bucky and Elliot. I was really shocked about Paris, because I called to vote for her between 10:30 and 11:15 (ok, her and Chris) and never did get through. Anyway, Mandisa is gone. That's a shame. I never expected her to win, but thought she'd get farther into the competition. And WHO OUT THERE is voting for Bucky? He must have friends in the phone company!

05 April, 2006


I had a request for new pics of Zoe Pig. And who am I to deny my favorite sister-in-law? Here's four, taken just now. I imagine she'll be hiding until morning. She really hates when I do this kind of stuff to her!

It amazes me how she can look so big one minute and so tiny the next. The little igloo in the foreground is where I keep her hay. Sometimes I put the hay on top so that she has to climb to get it, and sometimes I put the hay inside. It's really fun to watch her smoosh her whole body really really small to fit through the opening. No, I don't think of it as torture - I think of it as mental stimulation. I want her to be the smartest Piggy in her class. :o)

I have one more picture I'd like to share. This is Milo in his glory. Milo in a box, surrounded by lots of other boxes. This also gives a little scope to the disaster area that our living room has become. There's cardboard everywhere!

A Present for Me

Last night, as a present for driving down I-4, sitting in the waiting room, and going through with my girlie doctor appointment all by myself, I bought something shiny: a Kodak photo printer! Not only was it $40 off, but I got 10% off that and 10% off a second ink cartridge & paper pack. I've been looking at photo printers for a while now, and with the price lower than any I've found at Wal Mart, how could I pass up a Kodak product??

As for the doctor appointment, it went well. And if this PAP comes back clear, I don't have to go back for six months! And if that one comes back clear, I can go back to annuals! Woo hoo!

Thus far, this calendar week is going much better than last week.

**knock wood**

03 April, 2006

Four Words

"Your car is ready."

Could there be any sweeter words a woman can hear?

I was a little mean to the old guy who was working in the office when I brought my car in. I feel bad about it. But they called less than two hours later saying the car is ready. I talked to Eric, and he sounded a little mad at me. I'll be bringing Scott in with me when I pick up the car, just in case Eric wants to tell me to not be mean to his employees. I figure it'll be best to have someone there to keep me from strangling him!

Anyway, he said that the fill cap had a bad seal. Or that a seal ate my Phil Hat. I don't know cars. He says they left it on the lift for 45 minutes and it wasn't leaking at all. I'm going to take his word for it. Again.

Please Lord, let this really be the last time I set foot in that place!

01 April, 2006

What's the Punchline?

Rather than filling this entry with curse words, I'm using the Wacky Mad Libs technique for this entry. every time you see a ____, just fill in whatever adjective you choose. or if you'd like to read it in my own words, substitute the blank spaces with "f-ing."

Today has not been my greatest day. In fact, I'm hard-pressed to remember more than 3 or 4 days in my entire life that were worse than today.

Today started with Scott and I getting up and mobile to run some errands. We had gotten a slip in our mailbox saying that there were nine (yes, nine) packages for me at the post office. So we went to the post office, waited in line for 20 minutes, and got our nine packages. We threw them into the trunk of the car and headed for the Penzoil oil change place.

The oil change was going really well. They didn't try to sell me an air filter or anything like that. Then the guy infomed us that there were "big time leaks" in the ___ transmission. The car hasn't been running perfectly, but I assumed it was because it needed the oil change, or maybe new spark plugs. It turns out the car has been running like crap because I've been driving around with practically no _____ transmission fluid!

So it looks like Monday morning, Scott and I are going to take my poor blessed car back to the _____ guys at Remanufactured Transmission so that they can find and fix the _____ leaks in my _____ transmission without charging me one _____ cent! And hopefully it'll be fixed by Tuesday morning so that Scott won't have to be dropped off at work 2 hours early so that I can go to my _____ gyno appointment in his car.

Back to today. We returned home with the nine _____ boxes from my wicked _____ stepmother and started to open them. In retrospect, I should have just left them closed. Five of the parcels were the contents of the other five drawers I started receiving before. One was more old clothes, including a dress from the 8th grade and my 4th grade dance recital outfit (complete with sequined beret that I wore for the next hour). And one contained possibly the biggest insult to date:

I received two certificates - one was my Presidential Academic Fitness Award from elementary school, and one was the journalism award I won in high school from the American Scholastic Press Association. Both were framed and hung proudly on my wall at some point in the past. Both were returned to me sans frames, sandwiched between other awards from school.

She kept my frames. That _____ bitch isn't returning my property to me, she's only returning what she can't use herself. Not only is that insulting, it's mean and spiteful and absolutely horrid.

This is by far the most hateful thing anyone has ever done to me. So anyone out there who believes in prayer, please pray that I stop hating her. It's not ok to hate, but I'm out of other emotions. To date, I've turned the other cheek 17 times every time I got another box, and at this point, I feel like maybe she deserves to be hated.

April Fool

"April 1st: This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three-hundred and sixty-four." — Mark Twain

That Mark Twain was a wise wise man.