Ernest Hemingway:

As Ernest Hemingway once said...
'All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.'

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

my affair with running

Running. Me and running. The two of us have had a long and tumultuous relationship. It all started in the fourth grade, officially. My grade school did this little race around the school, and I won some sort of prize. I don't think I won the whole thing, but I won something. It was a proud moment. Because of this, I signed up for the Green Tree Run in Kirkwood, where I won a trophy for my age group. It was big, and pretty, and green. I treasured it. I put it next to all of my summer swimming ribbons (mostly blue and red, mind you).

We took a hiatus (well, we flirted off and on, but it was just in fun) until my freshman year of high school. In the eighth grade, we were asked to pick which organized sports we might be interested in. I knew right away I wanted to swim. I've been in the water since I was born. There was a subdivision pool in my neighborhood, so my sister and I spent every waking moment there every day it was open. I kid you not. From the moment the pool opened in the summer to the day it closed we were there (hello skin cancer). I think I feel more natural in water than on land, frankly. It's so much easier on the ol' joints. Anyway, my little eighth grade mind knew I wanted to swim, and also knew the girls swimming season conflicted with the track season. It was unfair, but a fact nonetheless. I noticed a sport I'd never heard of on the slip - cross country. It mentioned running. My mind instantly flashed back to the prize I won in the fourth grade. This is it! It's my destiny. I got a few more friends to sign up (they had no idea what they were getting into, poor dears), and we were set. Cross country, here we come.

Practice started the first day of school. It took place at Manchester Park. We changed into shorts and a t-shirt, and some scuffy old tennis shoes, in the park's bathroom. My mind thought this would be like track. Coach Smith had us run a few sprints, then once around the park, I think. It's not that big. We were stoked. This was going to be fun. If only someone had warned me.

Shortly after the first practice we were already running 4+ miles a day. We soon discovered we'd need better shoes. I got a cheap pair of Nikes, same as Hoover, one of my best friends at the time (nobody does it like you, the way that you do, nobody has the power to please get the idea). I can remember being at school and having to literally drag myself up the stairs. I hadn't felt pain like that, well, ever, probably. I'd go to school all day, run for hours, then go home, eat like a sonofabitch, and do homework. Why did I continue? I honestly don't know. I guess it was sheer determination. And cute boys. And my friends. Why they continued to be friends with me after I signed them up for this I'll never understand.

Anyway, it turns out I was good. I was the best freshman on the team. I made varsity that year, but unfortunately, our team didn't qualify for state. At the time I was grateful. I had no idea what I was doing, and state seemed so scary. I graduated into $60 shoes (that was a lot back in the day), and had to tape up my arches and ankles every day, as I had the worst shin splints in the world. I had to get orthotics, as my arches are just about flat, which means the shins are pulled wrong, the knees are pulled wrong, and all the way up to the hips. Not a good thing, but I trudged along anyway. I gained twenty pounds of pure muscle that first season. Crazy. I have a really athletic body because of it, though, so I can't complain.

Things went downhill from there. I continued to run all four years, but my body pretty much gave out. I wasn't ever on the varsity team anymore. It was disappointing, but not really. I still had swimming (that's a post for another day, however). I was a heck of a freestyler.

I remember one race we ran without the varsity team my junior year. Coach moved the top 7 JV up to varsity (they were training for state - sadly enough, we made it every year but my freshman year), and I was one of the top 7. The race was awesome. I knew I was running well, and kept passing other runners. I remember running by some spectators (yes, they did exist), and they called out to me that I was in first place. Me? How scary! Yet how exhilarating. This particular race went through the woods, and as it was fall, leaves were everywhere. They marked the course with a single yellow line. I had a hard time seeing it. I worried that I was going off the course and would be disqualified. Finally the woods faded away, and there was a giant straightaway that led into the end-of-the-course ropes. I sped through, sending shreds of ribbon everywhere, knowing I was first. It was the best feeling ever. Who needs drugs with highs like that? For a gifted runner aging before her time, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

I've tried picking it back up off and on since high school. I'd get a good rhythm going for a few weeks, then lose interest. I picked it up for a while freshman year of college with my roommate and former cross country cohort Hammertime. We'd go for a jog, come home, (mom and dad close your eyes) smoke a bowl, and cram a nasty pizza from the dining hall down our throats. Good times.

I also picked it up for a while when Q and I lived in Dallas. It was the first desk job I'd ever had (except for my brief stint as a telemarketer - yet another future blog entry), and I put on probably about twenty pounds. Scary. It didn't really help, so I quit again. I preferred donning rollerblades and holding on to Q's bike as he did all the work. The weight magically came off once I moved back home, though. I've determined it was Dallas that made me fat. Damn you, Texas. Good riddance.

Anyway, I've started the affair again, and I'm not sure how long it will last. We're in our honeymoon phase right now. I probably need new orthotics, as I'm still wearing the ones from high school. I wonder if I'm fucking up my body for good with each step I take. I notice new aches and pains, and wonder if that will ever go away if I continue this relationship. I feel like I should feel more of a real connection to it. It led to the best friends of my life, many boyfriends, and many life lessons. It dominated four years of my life. Maybe that's why I can't let it go. Chances are, though, once the weather gets warmer, I'll ditch it for the bike or rollerblades. I have a hard time running if it's not cold, for some strange reason. And I won't even consider running on a treadmill. My boss told me that he runs also the other day, and said he usually goes 2-3 miles at a time. I asked him how he knew how many miles he runs. He gave me a weird look and said because the treadmill keeps count. Duh! Sorry, running on a treadmill doesn't seem right at all. I have to have the wind in my face, my feet slamming pavement for it to be 'running', to be real.

There lies my affair with running. How long will it last? Probably not long. I'm fickle like that. I bore easily. I know I'll never run a marathon, or even a half-marathon. That shit is messed up. Talk about putting your body through hell. I recently learned that mens' nipples can bleed during marathons from the rubbing of the shirt. Why would you do that to yourself? I'm an adrenaline junkie, but come on. There is a line.

I think this is the longest post I've written. Now I need a drink.

Monday, January 30, 2006

weekend update

I'm pretty sure this day could not suck any more. Wait, let me knock on wood (luckily my desk is wood) - there's plenty that could happen between now and home, I guess.

On a more pleasant note, I had my second meeting with my writer's group on Saturday. It's myself and three other students from the fiction class I took last winter. I wasn't sure how it was going to work out, but our first two meetings have been so great. They reviewed the second draft of my short story last Saturday, and I got about ten times more help and insight from three people than I got from the entire class of fifteen, including the teachers. It's great to have found three great writers to collaborate with, and we work so well together. I'm so excited about our future. I actually want to write another draft of my story, which is unprecedented. I'm excited about writing, and about having such talented people to help. I just hope my writing doesn't suck too bad. It's like all the horrible singers on American Idol - they actually think they can sing well, but end up sounding like barking seals. Maybe I think my writing is good and has potential, but it just blows. Ha! That'd be hilarious. I guess that's the risk you take, though, anytime you put your writing out there. All you can do is hope to hell it's not awful.

I just got the annual kickball reminder email from our team captain - holy crap, I can't wait for the season to start! Which reminds me, I have to get in shape...kickball is a lot harder now than it was as a kid. Which seems to be true about everything, really.

Friday, January 27, 2006

note from Dr. Todd Fuquad, PHD

Yesterday I received the following comment from the very distinguished Dr. Todd Fuquad:

Dear Ms. Jean,

I am writing with news that will surely brighten your day. As the first student of the Ska School of Business you have been chosen to receive an honorary certificate in business. And as the first official graduate of the Ska School of Business you will be invited to produce your own testimonial to be published on the Ska School of Business Homepage at your leisure. You will also be invited to be a member of the distinguished faculty of said school. Feel free to proclaim yourself as a Doctor of a discipline of your choosing, and we will accredit you with our self-proclaimed accrediting body. Congratulations Ms. Jean! Today is the first day of the rest of your life!

Dr. Todd Fuquad

Now that's some excitement for my Friday. As I graduated with a BA in English, this is very good news indeed. Finally, a degree that might do some good for my career! Let's face it. It can't hurt.

How did one with a degree in English and a minor in Art History end up in with a job in the wonderful world of finance? I don't know. Really. Somehow I landed at the job from hell (oh my god look at that freak Roger Riney) and that somehow landed me here. Seems I'm actually good at this stuff. I'm pretty fascinated with mutual funds, so at least I'm somewhat interested in something we do here. IRAs just bore the hell out of me. Too many rules.

Really, I wanted to be a poet, and teach poetry at some college somewhere. It's hilarious to think about, my young ass self thinking that was a good career goal. I blame my counselor in college. What was he thinking? I'm so obviously not a teacher. If this guy had taken even one minute to get to know me, he'd have known that right off. The worst part is that during graduation the stupid prick called me the wrong name as I shook his hand. Thanks, guy. Now I have an English degree that virtually does me no good at all, and warm, fuzzy memories from my graduation.

Maybe I'll write the Great American Novel and make a shitload of money, therefore somehow rendering my English degree useful. Hey, it could happen. There are worse writers, that's for sure (did anyone actually get through 'The Notebook'? sorry, mom). All I know is that I'm meeting with my writers group tomorrow morning, and they're reviewing the second draft of my short story. I don't think I've ever written a second draft of anything, as I tend to lose interest in things quickly, so this is a momentous occasion. Hopefully it doesn't suck total ass.

Anyway, a big thanks to the great Dr. Fuquad. A true genious.

shit liao

Japanese? Chinese? I'm not sure. Either way, it's hilarious:

pineapple tarts. half gone! into my stomach. i think some become shit liao. muahhaha.

Somehow this girl stumbled onto my blog. I'm not sure how. The blogging universe is such a mystery. If anyone out there has some insight into 'shit liao', do tell. I have an idea, but you never know...

line of the day

From my sister Moo:

'Do you really need reservations at Macaroni Grill?'

Yes, dear sister, you do, if you don't want to wait for an hour or more. Sad, but true, especially in a city like St. Louis, where great pasta is right around the corner on The Hill. You must fight the masses and their idea of good pasta.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


I hate driving. Not because I don't love operating a vehicle, but because other drivers are complete idiots. If everone would stop being in such a damn hurry and think about each other once in a while, the world would be a much better place. I'm so sick of being cut off, and inconsiderate people thinking they're more important than me, that they have to get home faster than me. Seriously, why can't St. Louis have decent public transportation? That would completely make my day so much better. I wouldn't have to worry about totally incompetent drivers.

In fact, my biggest wish is that everyone would get up and smoke some green every day of their lives. Then smoke again at lunch. Then again at dinner.

Think about what that would do to the world. No one would be in a rush to do anything. Food of all types and varities, cooked well or poorly, would be delicious. We'd all be well hydrated. No one would argue, or have stress-induced panic attacks. We'd be happy and considerate, because no one would be in a hurry to get anywhere or get anything done. Perfection? Gone. Overachievement? Buh-bye. The world would be a laid back, relaxed, content place. No one would step on anyone else to get ahead, or cut you off to get home faster because they're more important than you. No one would yell at the cashier for something completely out of their control. No one would butt in front of you in line. Wow. It's fantastic.

I'm not talking getting rip-roaring high all day long. Just a few puffs would do ya. Imagine living without stress. Does this world exist? If so, please draw me a map. I'm so there.

does kirk cameron even have a penis?

Someone found my blog by searching for 'kirk cameron penis size'. Wow. I thought I had a lot of free time on my hands, but this person has me beat hands down. All I can say is wow. I'm stunned. Welcome, kirk cameron member admirer.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

wait for it...wait for it...

Oh boy, brace for more controversy! Kanye is at it again. I think it's a cool cover, but just wait, the christian right is going to be all over this one. They already don't like him. Shit's gonna hit the fan.

It's like all the controversy over the new show 'The Book of Daniel'. The show's okay - it has its moments - but is it worth all the stupidity? If anything, it's only helping to promote the show. Ha. So what if the evangelical priest talks to Jesus, and Jesus is the typical, white, long-haired, beareded, white cloth draped stereotype? It's not supposed to be the real Jesus, people. Daniel is talking to his idea of Jesus in his head. And so what if the priest has a pain pill addiction? So priests aren't allowed to be normal people with normal battles to fight? Please. These nuts actually got the show pulled from something like nine affiliates. Seriously, if you don't want your kids watching this, then don't let them! It's on at nine, anyway. It's not like that's the 'family hour'. So much energy expended to create a stir about this show when there are definitely bigger fights to fight. If only these right-winged nuts would focus their attention elsewhere. How about the millions of poor in this nation alone? How about the victims of Katrina who are still living in hotels, or the children who are abused night and day? Try that for a while. Leave us normal folk to our Rolling Stone and TV, please.

On a side note, does anyone remember
Charlie, the smoking chimp? My boss forwarded me the link. I remember reading about it a while back, but never actually saw the video. It's hilarious. It's also horribly sad, but really, who can help but to laugh. It's completely odd to see a chimp smoking. Poor thing, he doesn't even realize how addicting it is. He just thinks it's funny. Apparently he gets pissed if he doesn't have any smokes. Speaks volumes about how addictive they are.

On another side note, some heinous mofo kept calling us in the middle of the night last night. Not over and over, mind you - he'd wait ten minutes or so between calls. So, just when we thought it was safe to go to sleep, bam, there he was again. I didn't answer the phone, Q did, but the guy was so loud I could hear everything he said. Or could have heard everthing he said, had it been intelligible. They guy wasn't foreign - he must have been totally drunk. Q would say 'hello', then there was a stream of insane banter, followed by Q telling the guy it was the wrong number, then they guy acting confused (I heard a couple of 'huh?'s), Q repeating it was the wrong number, then the guy finally hanging up. Man, what a freak. We finally unplugged the phones after three calls.

It reminds me of the time a hispanic guy called my cell and left a message. Apparently he thought I was a friend of his (though my message clearly says 'It's Norma Jean, you know what to do'), and needed my help to escape from the cops. They were after him for stealing money or something like that. The message was awesome - I wish I had saved it.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

my sweet girl

This is my girl. My sweet houndie. Isn't she adorable? We don't normally put bandanas or other dog accessories on her (well, other than her Mizzou collar and blue fleece coat - she gets cold!), but this one was a gift from the in-laws. So we put it on while staying at their house.

Look at that face! How can you not love these great animals? I especially like her grey old lady beard. It's hilarious how dogs turn grey on their chin once they get older.

Q, on his way to work today, saw a greyhound trotting down the sidewalk unattended. He stopped his car and called the houndie over. Luckily she came to him and let him put her in the car. When you have a greyhound, their escape is your worst fear. They run so fast that there's no way you could catch up to them. Because of this, all houndies rescued from Rescued Racers have a special tag they wear on their collar with the phone number to Rescued Racers. Most also have a tag with their owner's phone number and address. Luckily this girl had both, so Q called all of the numbers on her tag. No one answered. He was about to go to the address listed when a woman called him back to say she'd meet him at her house (which was close). He dropped off the houndie. The lady had left her gate open. Q said she wasn't very thankful. What a loser!

I'd be overjoyed if someone did that for me. Then again, I'm 99% confident that my houndie wouldn't run away. She's pretty attached to us. One day we were out and about in the yard, and I went from the back yard to the front yard, and I forgot to close the gate. A few minutes later, I turned around and saw Chay. She was standing right behind me. It was surreal, because I knew she shouldn't be there, yet there she was. Perfect opportunity to run away, yet she didn't. She's so velcro - literally, if we're up, she's at our feet. Such a sweet girl. We've also let her out to stand with us during neighbors' parties, and she doesn't even try it. She knows how good she's got it.

Monday, January 23, 2006

good ol' NES

This weekend was super boring and lame, which was fine with me. We did have to go to my work's annual party on Saturday night. It's black tie, which is kryptonite for Q, but I like it. I like getting really dressed up every once in a while. There was an open bar all night, and the food was actually really good. It started at 6, and we were one of the first couples to leave at 11:30. I heard the party lasted into the wee hours of the morning. Neither of us was feeling very well, and honestly, big shindigs aren't really our thing. We don't dance (believe me, it's better that way), and aren't big socializers, so really, there wasn't anything else to do. This illness is ridiculous. It's the same thing we had over New Year's. It just won't go away!

On a happier note, who remembers NES? Nintendo's first system (I think?). I got min
e in grade school, right when they came out. My dad is a gamer in disguise, so he bought it as much for himself as for my sister and I. I remember it came with Super Mario Brothers and Ice Climber. Anyway, Q found some music by a band called The Advantage on Sunday. They play music from Nintendo games. It's hilarious. Some games I haven't played in years, and the music is instantly recognizable. To be fair, though, we have my old NES set up in the basement, so I've played these games more recently than most, I'm sure.

I love NES games. They're fun without all the thinking involved in more recent games. You can't save them, and I love that. I enjoy brainless games. Hell, I can't even beat the Harry Potter games on X-box. I have to cheat and look at the internet to figure out how to get past things. It's too hard. And if it takes more than a few tries to move on, I give up. I don't have countless hours to figure out how to beat a bookcase that is throwing books. I thought that SIMS would be fun, but good lord, it's horribly boring. You've got to watch your person do the same thing over and over, trying to earn credits for better jobs, etc. I mean, this can go on for days and days. Ack. This stuff is too complicated.

My all time favorite is Tetris, but I also enjoy Castelvania II (which I've beaten numerous times), all the Super Mario Brothers, all the Zeldas, all the Donkey Kongs, Goonies II, Dig Dug, Dr. Mario - I could go on and on. Such good memories of kicking my sister's ass at Bubble Bobble, regular Mario Brothers, and best of all, Mario Kart (wait, that might have been Super Nintendo - I have them all). Good times.

Friday, January 20, 2006

speak up!

I wanted to write a short post letting everyone know that it's okay to leave comments. In fact, I totally welcome them. If you think I'm horribly annoying, and want to say so, feel free. If you disagree with what I write, again, feel free to let me know. Or feel free to agree. (Can I get a 'I hear ya, sista!'?) If there's one thing I am cool with, it's criticism. I'm a writer, after all, and love to improve my work. I can't improve if no one has anything to say.

I have a lot of opinions. I'll be the first to admit that. But, I'm a work in progress, and I love hearing the other side. I won't always agree, and I won't necessarily change my mind, but I constantly want food for thought. Sometimes hearing other opinions will make me reconsider my point of view. Sometimes it will make my position even stronger. Either way, it's a great thing.

Mostly, though, I just want to know you're out there. I see the stats. I know people come 'round these parts. Seriously, you have nothing to say? I know a few people in particular that visit on a regular basis. You know who you are. I know and you know you have something to say. So say it!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

the (in)humane society

This cat has a burger on its back. Seems like a waste of a perfectly good burger. I could go for some barbecue right now, preferably not coated in cat hair.

I was reminded of the cat Steph and I tried to save in college while scanning through the pictures on A cat somehow wandered onto the back porch of our first floor house apartment on Wilson. It wouldn't go away. We were not allowed to have pets, but we brought it inside anyway, and bought it some food. We didn't want to keep it long, as neither of us had money for cat food on a regular basis, and definitely didn't have the money for the pet deposit. We checked with everyone we knew, and no one wanted the sweet, pretty kitty. So, we decided to work out a deal with the Humane Society.

We would leave the kitty with them to see if anyone would adopt it. Stupid, I know. Who adopts adult cats when they could have a kitten? But we had no experience in this area, as both of us liked cats, but were definitely dog people. (Funny side story - once, at a sleepover at Steph's house in 8th grade, her golden lab stole a pair of underwear out of another girl's bag and took them directly to Steph's brother, who was a few years older and very cool. Hilarious.) We asked the Humane Society specifically to put the cat up for adoption for 5 days (after that they kill them), and if they hadn't found a home by then, that we would come back and pick up the cat. We'd rather take our chances with the cat than have it killed. We left, hopeful that she'd find a great family.

Boy, were we surprised when, after the five days, we called and were told that the cat had been killed. Dumb Columbia backwoods hicks. They waited three days, and without so much as a phone call, killed it. I demanded to know why, when we had left our phone number and specifically made it clear we didn't want the cat killed. They said it was unruly. I know this wasn't true, as we had kept it for at least a week prior to taking it in, and it had never once been unruly.

I wrote a very nasty letter, and vowed never to support the In-Humane Society again. I understand people who get animals there. That's fine. But heed this warning - if you love your animal at all, and are forced to give it up, don't take it there. Please. It's a death sentence. We were both crushed. I guess I understand killing animals when they're not wanted. What else can you do with them? We'd be overrun. But killing one that had a last resort home - that's just wrong.

I went back on my word, though, when donations in Steph's name were to be made to the Humane Society. She got her two babies there, who are now living with her sister. I did donate then. Now they won't leave me alone, but that's another story.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

oh, to be a kid again

I went to have lunch with my little bro today, like I do every Wednesday. Today the entire 5th & 6th grade had to eat lunch in complete silence. It was hilarious, watching these kids squirm, and occasionally sneak in a word or two to each other. Their principal is a total hardass. She watches these kids like a hawk. I think it's good, to a certain extent. I like that she tries to impose rules and teach them manners. However, making them eat in complete silence I think goes a little far. Kids are supposed to be loud at lunch. It's their time for release.

She also occasionally takes recess away from them as punishment for being too loud. This wasn't the case today, as the cafeteria was as quiet as I've ever seen it. If she caught someone talking more than once, that person had to go and stand against the wall. They couldn't finish their lunch. So harsh.

I'm a huge proponent of recess. While out with our little bros this weekend, Q's little bro told me he doesn't get a recess because too many kids were getting into fights. How sad is that? That hardly seems like a good way to stop fighting. He says they fight anyway. Why punish the rest of the kids? I think it's awful to coop young kids up in a classroom all day without any time to release some energy. Recess is a time when they can run around and be kids. It seems that all too often we aren't allowing them that simple freedom. There's so much homework, sports, tv, and all that crap. They're totally missing out on the ability to interact with each other.

On the Dave Glover show the other week, he was talking about some guy in New York who quit his job to organize neighborhood games like baseball, soccer, and basketball. Not for leagues, mind you - just for kids to get together and play. How crazy is that? Apparently he's making a shitload of money doing this. Why can't our kids do this themselves?

When I was a kid, my sis and I left the house in the morning, occasionally returned to eat or bother my mom, and came back when the sun went down. Sometimes we didn't even come back then - we stayed out to play flashlight tag (we also played that for a while in college - not such a good idea, though - grown folk running around at night wearing all black waving flashlights around). We had a neighborhood pool, and in the summers, if we weren't there (which we almost always were, even in the rain - hello skin cancer!), we were running around on our bikes, playing cops & robbers, soccer, baseball, tag, whatever our little minds came up with. We'd even bike over to bordering neighborhoods to visit school friends. I'm talking miles here, people. My mom never knew exactly where we were, but she trusted us to do what was right. We have to have confidence in our ability to teach our children.

What happened to that? I know, it's a dangerous world nowadays. It was then, too, I'm sure. But some point we have to let our kids go and be kids. Stuff is going to happen. But do we want fat little antisocial brats sitting around in our houses all day playing video games and watching TV? Hell no. It's so horrible. They grow up never knowing independence, and losing their innocence way too early thanks to the media and computers. I'm sure my mom pushed us out some days. Who wants to sit around with two silly kids all day long? She needed a break too. Of course, there was no internet back then, and simple cable TV, if that. We'd have killed each other if we had to stay in that house all day.

I watched a TV show on PBS this weekend that showed how boys do so much better in school if they're allowed to expend some energy during the day. There are studies that show they can't concentrate if made to sit in one place the entire time. This show said that 80% of all stimulant drugs in the world are prescribed to American boys. It's staggering. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not judging. I don't have kids. I have no idea what it's like to raise a child with behavior issues. I do know a few kids who have greatly benefited from stimulants. No amount of recess would have helped these kids. Something definitely seems wrong with that stat, though.

Ah, to be a child again. Wasn't elementary school the best? Everyone was friends. No one was a complete weirdo yet, no raging hormones. Just good old fashioned fun.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

and the winner is...

Here's a pic of Drew Barrymore from the Golden Globes last night. I'm not sure this picture does the hideousness of her breasts justice. Good god, honey. Put on a bra. You can't use the excuse that one wouldn't work with your dress. You could have done a full out bra with it. Believe me, I'm all for ditching the bra - going to the store, walking the dog, etc. But in front of millions and millions of viewers? When she so obviously needs a bra? No way. Bad decision. Nothing even remotely sexy about this.

I always enjoy watching the Golden Globes and the Academy Awar
ds. It's so formulaic, and I can predict who is going to win at least 50% of the time, but I love seeing what everyone is wearing. There were more than a few very bad decisions last night, however. Geena Davis looked hugely hippy. The dress was cute, but it should have flowed past her waist instead of hugging it so tightly. Sheesh. Where are their friends? They need someone to honestly tell them what to wear and what not to wear.

Sandra Oh also made a poor choice. Her breasts were nonexistant. I think
they're actually smaller than mine - who would have thought it possible? She definitely could have used a visit to Victoria's Secret.

And what about Reese? Her dress was 'vintage Chanel'. There's something to be said about vintage. It's the new 'cool' thing. But can't it be cute, too? This just makes her look like a little girl. She looks young enough to begin with. (Blogger won't let me upload this picture - stupid Blogger!)

My favorite dress was, and I hate to say it, Gwyneth's. I can't stand her. And look, she's pregnant again (insert baby name / fruit joke). How frightening. But her dress was cute, in a sweet, feminine sort of way.

If they'd only realize how good I am as a wardrobe consultant. They'd never use anyone else, I'm sure. I'd be rich!

Monday, January 16, 2006

one moody mofo

I am one moody mofo today. Shocking, I know. This seems to be the pattern on Mondays. It's particularly bad today though, because I seem to be the only person without the day off. Except my friend in Atlanta. She's not off either. That's even more wrong.

It doesn't even matter that I'm wearing my pretty new suit, though that helps a tiny, tiny bit. I love new suits. For a few months, anyway - then I tire of them. It's a really bad thing. I take after my little sister. I can hardly stand to look at clothes if I've had them more than six months or so. Hard on the wallet. But being that suits are expensive (ridiculously so), I force myself to wear them anyway. It's tragic, I know.

Q and I went to eat at Brandt's in U City on Friday night. Puke! Don't go there. Thankfully we had a gift certificate. Nothing was good, except for Q's salad, and really, it's hard to mess that up. We had Vietnamese spring rolls as an appetizer, and boy, you had to bathe them in the sauce to detect any flavor whatsoever. And the sauce was very spicy, so it was definitely not a good combo. Take my word for it - a limoncello martini doesn't quite help when there's a five alarm fire in your mouth. I can handle spicy, too, living with Q. This was bad. Then I ordered red pepper and some sort of cheese stuffed chicken breast. It sounded great. Wow, what a disappointment. The chicken breast was HUGE, and wasn't seasoned at all. There was a tablespoon - if that - of red pepper and cheese in the middle, and that's it. Seriously, I had to ask for a steak knife to cut that puppy. It was horribly tough. Good god, folks - I could have done better, and that's saying a lot. Funny side note - I just looked at their online menu, and this is not on there anymore. I bet someone else complained. No human being could have thought that was good. I almost complained - and mind you, I NEVER do that. I've learned my lesson - don't fuck with the people preparing your food. Not a good idea.

I used to work at a small pizza place in Columbia (well, 'work' is a stretch - mostly I played Play Station, watched TV, made fun of the owner Cornbred, observed an alcoholic delivery driver get arrested, wondered how a seriously obese delivery driver fit in his small car, or did crossword puzzles - the phones weren't exactly ringing off the hook - but that's a story best saved for another time), and I definitely saw some things. Good life lesson - always tip the pizza guy. Otherwise you'll end up with something on your pizza that you don't want to eat. They'll remember you, too. We used to note accounts in the computer. I've been to fast food establishments when someone I was with has complained BEFORE we got our food. Come on, people. If you have to complain, at least wait until afterwards. Needless to say, I didn't eat the food.

On a side note, I can't get the Chronic (what?)cles of Narnia rap out of my head from SNL. Q and I were supposed to take our little brothers to see the movie on Saturday, but someone messed up the movie times (it's easy, okay?), so we had to see Hoodwinked instead. It was actually pretty funny. Q downloaded the rap before we left. It's hilarious. Those white boys sure can rap.

Friday, January 13, 2006

watch for flying shrimp

A family is suing Benihana (Japanese steak house / grill) after a man died, claiming he died because he ducked when a shrimp was thrown at him. Is that a joke? What a complete misuse of our legal system.

This crap is getting out of control. He died because he jacked his neck up, apparently, months after the shrimp incident. Maybe he did injure it because of the shrimp. But no one forced him to duck. People need to take responsibility for their own actions. It's ridiculous. I heard someone say the other day that it's lawyers who have ruined this country. I think there's some merit to that. I tend to blame parenting, but I see the lawyer theory, too.

It's like Howard Stern being fined. For the love of god, people. If you don't want your kids listening to Howard Stern, don't let them. And if you've raised them properly, it won't matter if they listen to him or not. They will know right from wrong.

I was listening to Rover's Morning Glory (the crap show that took over Howard's spot - I'm addicted to talk radio, okay?), and they were discussing a letter they had received from a listener. This guy found a condom wrapper in his daughter's trash can, and he was wondering if he should read her journal or not, though she had made him promise he'd never do that. They were on the side of reading the journal. Are you kidding me? What happened to talking to your kids instead of going behind their backs? The guy should at least confront the girl first. Have a civil discussion.

It's sickening. I'm beginning to wonder if people shouldn't be born unable to have kids then have to earn that ability later in life. It's just unbelievable the things people do to their kids, or to other people.

And as for all these dumb lawsuits, please. Just stop. Our judicial system has enough to worry about without that, like sending innocent people to death.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

we're so going to hell...

No, your eyes aren't playing tricks on you. It's not trick photography. It's an flourescent green pig. How awesome is that?

Have you, dear reader, ever driven (or, god forbid, walked) by a pig farm? It's wretched. Horrible, horrible smell. But I could definitely overlook the smell if all the pigs were flourescent.

My question: what happens when this pig mates? Or can it mate? This pig isn't just green on the outside, either, mind you. It's green on the inside too - every last organ. It doesn't say, but I wonder if its blood is green. Now that would be neat-o.

The interesting thing is that this pig is green so they can study human diseases. I don't see a link. I think they're using that as an excuse so they can make flourescent pigs. I'm okay with that. Anything for science, right?

kirk cameron? really?

Your 80s Heartthrob Is

Kirk Cameron

I had a feeling this was going to happen as I answered the questions. Out of all the 80s heartthrobs, why Kirk Cameron? Why do I get the guy who's been reborn? The star of the 'Left Behind' series? This just isn't fair. I'm convinced this test was put out there to freak me out. Oh, Kirk, what happened to you? And to Boner? So much promise. What a shame.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

crazy mixed emotions

This morning has been crazy. It started off well. I had just enough time to do everything this morning before work without rushing around. I love mornings like that. But, once I hit 170, things went downhill fast. This MORON in a piece of shit old car (some gross green geo or something like that) was merging from highway 40, and I guess didn't see me there. He started coming over, and I honked. Then he came over anyway, almost completely taking off the front end of my car. I looked in the middle lane, and LUCKILY there was no one there, so I moved over, and laid on the horn. Some are afraid to use the horn, but I have no problem with it. In fact, I love it. It's such a great release.

This fucker had the nerve, when I passed him, to give me a dirty look! So I sped up and merged in front of him (not cutting him off, mind you). When I passed, his passenger, some dirty icky middle aged woman flicked me off! THE NERVE! I was so pissed. My heart raced. Are people that damned stupid? To think I wronged them somehow? It's unbelievable. I was 100% in the right. I swear, why can't St. Louis have good public transportation? I don't need this crap twice every day. It's so not worth it.

Then, when I got to work, a co-worker (my favorite one) had left a message on my machine telling me how glad she was that I worked there. How nice is that? I've never had that happen in my entire working life. I tell ya, she made my day. This type of thing I think is horribly sappy and cheesy, unless it happens to me, of course.

So, in this crazy day of ups and downs, who knows what will come next. I'm going to visit little bro, so I'm hoping it'll be swinging up then.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

very sweet doggie needs home

A friend of mine has to get rid of a very sweet dog. My friend has 1 1/2 year old triplets, and the dog is a bit skiddish around them. She's great, but doesn't exactly know what to do with three stumbling toddlers coming at her from all directions.

She's a 6 year old golden mix of some sort. She's about the average size of a lab, is up to date with all of her vet info and shots, and can even do tricks. My friend has one request - that Lily (the doggie's name) has a yard to play in, as she loves to play fetch.

Lily was spoiled to death before the girls came. My friend had trouble getting pregnant, so Lily was her baby for 6 years. If you know anyone, please let me know. She's a great dog.

the speech Bush should have given about Iraq...

This was written by Juan Cole:

My fellow Americans:

I want us to go to war against Iraq. But I want us to have our eyes open and be completely realistic.

A war against Iraq will be expensive. It will cost you, the taxpayer, about $300 billion over five years. I know Wolfowitz is telling you Iraq's oil revenues will pay for it all, but that's ridiculous. Iraq only pumps about $10 billion a year worth of oil, and it's going to need that just to run the new government we're putting in. No, we're going to have to pay for it, ourselves. I'm going to ask you for $25 billion, then $80 billion, then another $80 billion. And so on. I'm going to be back to you for money more often than that unemployed relative that you don't like. The cost of the war is going to drive up my already massive budget deficits from about $370 billion to more like $450 billion a year. Just so you understand, I'm going to cut taxes on rich people at the same time that I fight this war. Then I'm going to borrow the money to fight it, and to pay for much of what the government does. And you and your children will be paying off that debt for decades. In the meantime, your dollar isn't going to go as far when you buy something made overseas, since running those kinds of deficits will weaken our currency. (And I've set things up so that most things you buy will be made overseas.) We'll have to keep interest rates higher than they would otherwise have been and keep the economy in the doldrums, because otherwise my war deficits would cause massive inflation.

So I'm going to put you, your children, and your grandchildren deeply in hock to fight this war. I'm going to make it so there won't be a lot of new jobs created, and I'm going to use the excuse of the Federal red ink to cut way back on government services that you depend on. For the super-rich, or as I call them, "my base," this Iraq war thing is truly inspired. We use it to put up the deficit to the point where the Democrats and the more bleeding heart Republicans in Congress can't dare create any new programs to help the middle classes. We all know that the super-rich--about 3 million people in our country of 295 million-- would have to pay for those programs, since they own 45 percent of the privately held wealth. I'm damn sure going to make sure they aren't inconvenienced that way for a good long time to come.

Then, this Iraq War that I want you to authorize as part of the War on Terror is going to be costly in American lives. By the time of my second inaugural, over 1,300 brave women and men of the US armed forces will be dead as a result of this Iraq war, and 10,371 will have been maimed and wounded, many of them for life. America's streets and homeless shelters will likely be flooded, down the line, with some of these wounded vets. They will have problems finding work, with one or two limbs gone and often significant psychological damage. They will have even more trouble keeping any jobs they find. They will be mentally traumatized the rest of their lives by the horror they are going to see, and sometimes commit, in Iraq. But, well we've got a saying in Texas. I think you've got in over in Arkansas, too. You can't make an omelette without . . . you gotta break some eggs to wrassle up some breakfast.

I know Dick Cheney and Condi Rice have gone around scaring your kids with wild talk of Iraqi nukes. I have to confess to you that my CIA director, George Tenet, tells me that the evidence for that kind of thing just doesn't exist. In fact, I have to be frank and say that the Intelligence and Research Division of the State Department doesn't think Saddam has much of anything left even from his chemical weapons program. Maybe he destroyed the stuff and doesn't want to admit it because he's afraid the Shiites and Kurds will rise up against him without it. Anyway, Iraq just doesn't pose any immediate threat to the United States and probably doesn't have anything useful left of their weapons programs of the 1980s.

There also isn't any operational link between a secular Arab nationalist like Saddam and the religious loonies of al-Qaeda. They're scared of one another and hate each other more than each hates us. In fact, I have to be perfectly honest and admit that if we overthrow Saddam's secular Arab nationalist government, Iraq's Sunni Arabs will be disillusioned and full of despair. They are likely to turn to al-Qaeda as an alternative. So, folks, what I'm about to do could deliver 5 million Iraqis into the hands of people who are insisting they join some al-Qaeda offshoot immediately. Or else.

So why do I want to go to war? Look, folks, I'm just not going to tell you. I don't have to tell you. There is little transparency about these things in the executive, because we're running a kind of rump empire out of the president's office. After 20 or 30 years it will all leak out. Until then, you'll just have to trust me.

Monday, January 09, 2006

oral hygenist from hell

I had to go to the dentist today for my bi-annual cleaning. I never look forward to this (does anyone?), but with my dental history, it's especially bad (thanks, mom & dad). For a while there, I had at least one cavity every time I went. It's been better, but I still get nervous. Nothing grosses me out like having a cavity filled. The taste of ground up tooth is horrible. Ack.

My family's dentist recently retired to care for his dying wife. I know, it's awful. He passed us all on to one of his students, who happens to be the team dentist for the Rams and the Blues. I would think that being the dentist for the Blues would be enough to keep you in business, but I guess this guy's a money whore. Anyway, my old dentist's oral hygenist (is that right? or is it dental hygenist?) was a nightmare. She picked and picked until your mouth was full of blood. I'm even good with pain, and this sucked.

So, I was looking forward (well, not really, but you know) to a new hygenist. My family said his are much nicer. They're liars! If the old one was a torturer, the new one is an executioner. I'm pretty sure she scraped the first layer of my teeth off. That can't be good. When she flossed, she sunk that sucker in so far I thought she'd knock my eyeballs out. Repeatedly. Then she asked me how often I floss. Lady, I floss every night. Shouldn't they know that? I'm not lying, either. I'll do anything to avoid cavities. Then she mentioned that I had braces. No shit. Doesn't everyone at some time? She followed that up by asking if I still wear a retainer. Shit, lady. How old do you think I am? I showed up in a suit. I said I was on my lunch hour. I'm sure my birthday is in the chart. No, I haven't worn a retainer for 10+ years. Sheesh.

The good news - no cavities! Unfortunately I had to go through torture to find that out. Why are teeth so damn stupid? I go through more pain expend more effort on my teeth than the rest of my body combined. That's insane. About halfway through the scraping I thought it must be easier to just pull them all and get dentures. No more flossing! Then I happened to glance over at my x-ray and saw my teeth and their humongous roots. Ouch. Guess I'll stick to brushing and flossing. Stupid teeth.

happy birthday petey...

Today is Petey the Ohio Playa's birthday. Happy Birthday, Petey! Go Petey, it's your birfday, you gonna party like it's your birfday...

On a side note, here's a funny article about some dumbass that tried to set a mouse on fire. The guy found a mouse in his house and threw it in a fire in his backyard (?). The mouse, on fire, got away and beelined for the guy's house, essentially destroying it. Talk about revenge. I bet that guy won't ever throw a mouse into a fire ever again. Serves the abusive fucker right. Who throws a mouse into a fire?

I guess the same people who beat puppies. Sick. That reminds me of the time Q's roommate in college put a glue trap down to catch a mouse without considering the consequences. This guy wouldn't hurt a fly, by the way. They did catch one, then quickly surmised there was no way to get it off unscathed. Q had to smash it with a rock, which was very traumatic for him. What else could you do? Again, another great lesson learned. Maybe it's best to leave the little critters alone.

Friday, January 06, 2006

not a thing to do

I am so excited at the prospect of having NOTHING to do this weekend. Not a single thing. I've been running myself ragged the past couple of months, but it's all over now. For a few weekends, anyway. I was going to have to look for a dress for our big formal party at work at the end of the month, but I found one today at lunch. Boy, do I love having a lunch hour. My wallet doesn't, though. Whew. Between shopping and yummy food, it's bleeding me dry. I didn't miss it at my old job, but I know if I had to go without one after having one, it'd be hard. Piss on that old job. No lunch break??? What a bunch of misers. Of course, it was no lunch break for us lowly toilers. The upper ranks could do whatever they wanted. Disgusting.

A funny thing happened at work today. Now I know I've done my fair share of stupid things, but this guy takes the cake. He had twenty-five letters to mail out. One of the girls got all the envelopes ready, and even went so far as to stack the letter on top of its envelope, all in a big pile. Pretty nice. Somehow this genius managed to seal all of the envelopes without putting in a single letter. Wow. A few envelopes, yes, I can see that. But twenty-five??? He'd have to have separated the letters from the envelopes, and he'd have ended up with a pile of twenty-five sealed, empty envelopes right next to a pile of twenty-five letters. The scary thing is that this guy manages money (and no, mom & dad, it's not your guy). It's interesting, though. These guys are really smart, and do a good job, but sometimes I swear they'd lose their head if it wasn't permanently attached. I think people that are very smart yet very clueless are funny. It's baffling.

I ended up getting my dress from Ann Taylor. Every year, in January, they reduce all of their markdowns by an additional 40%. You just can't beat getting a $200 dress for $60. I also got a very cute, comfy sweater. I can't wait to go home and put it on. I don't get freaked out by wearing new clothes before they're washed. I know it freaks some out. We had this conversation at my last job. Then again, I do
n't get freaked out by much. I'm pretty laid back. Obviously, underwear, swimsuits, bras, etc. are another story. If you wear those before washing you're just gross.

So, I will be spending the weekend with Q, enjoying our alcoholic Christmas gifts.. We have a bottle of
Ciroc (the vodka made with grapes), courtesy of CB & V, and a bottle of Jago's cream vodka from Scotland (courtesy of N-8 & MT). I can't wait to try the cream vodka, as I've never had anything like it. We never splurge on good alcohol (well, sometimes, but not often), so this will be a treat. That is if I can keep myself up past 10. I'm old, folks.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

baghdad burning

This is a really interesting blog written by a 26 year old female Iraqi woman. With the media being so one sided here, it's really nice (though depressing) to read about life in Iraq from a civilian who experiences it every day. It's well written and done very objectively - I know, it's shocking. I'm so not used to that. I recommend starting at the very beginning. It's a lot of reading, but so worthwhile.

She wrote, in one of her first posts:

'Normal day today. We were up at early morning, did the usual 'around the house things', you know - check if the water tank is full, try to determine when the electricity will be off, checked if there was enough cooking gas...

'You know what really bugs me about posting on the internet, chat rooms or message boards? The first reaction (usually from Americans) is "You're lying, you're not Iraqi". Why am I not Iraqi, well because a. I have internet access (Iraqis have no internet), b. I know how to use the internet (Iraqis don't know what computers are) and c. Iraqis don't know how to speak English (I must be a Liberal). All that shouldn't bother me, but it does. I see the troops in the streets and think, "So that's what they thought of us before they occupied us... that may be what they think of us now." How is it that we're seen as another Afghanistan?'

I think that sums up so well how many Americans feel about Iraq. They have no idea that there are people over there, just like you and I. Except these people have to live in the face of war, violence, and shortage without choosing that life in any way. Most of us can't even begin to imagine what that is like. While we sit at home, all safe and secure (from war, anyway), our government is terrorizing these people. It's so horrible.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

dear steph...

The other day, when Q and I were trying to shove my new glass plugs in my ears, I remembered your ex-man from college, Dwayne. You met Dwayne in St. Louis, and he decided he was going to go to Mizzou to be with you the second semester of our freshman year. He ended up living in our dorms. He was a funny, odd guy. He was the reason I made it through half of a computer programming class (I dropped out when the program I created ended up with over a hundred fatal errors).

The most notable thing about Dwayne (except for his long, stringy hair and weird nickname - I can't remember it for the life of me) was his penis ring. He was VERY proud of it. He would come to our room (me and Hammertime) and ask to borrow our pliers so he could take it out from time to time. Needless to say, we didn't use that pliers ever again.

I remember him telling us a story about taking a shower in the dorms. The walls were kind of short, but definitely taller than most girls. Dwayne was taking a shower one day, and a very tall black guy was showering in the stall next to him. The black guy looked over the wall and down at Dwayne, noticing the ring. He said, 'You got a thang in your thang.' We laughed for hours over this. I still remember hearing Dwayne say that, and the way he stretched out 'thang'.

You always had notable boyfriends, that's for sure. I'll cover Box of Rocks another time. He deserves an entire post all to himself.

the brown bunny

Over the holiday, we got 'The Brown Bunny' from Netflix. Q's only interested in this film because Chloe Sevigny gives Vincent Gallo a blow job. I mean full on. You see everything.

Unfortunately, this is the only interesting event in the entire movie, and Q had already downloaded this scene from the internet. If you haven't seen this movie, and want to, please don't read on.

This is hands down the worst movie I've ever seen. A reviewer on IMDB put it best:

'This film could have been called "Blow Job", been 5 minutes long, cost less, gathered a larger and more honest audience and made more money. I am a fan of Vincent Gallo's work but just wondered about this film and his reason behind writing the only scene the film will be remembered for. Many would write a scene like that and put themselves in the starring role if they thought they could get away with it, he has and it's quite funny if you really think about it. If you are curious about it, get the film and go straight to the scene where Chloe Sevigny appears. The rest just isn't worth watching, it's all about the blow job. Be honest with yourselves. '

When I say that the most action in the film is the blow job, I'm not kidding. And I'm not talking sex action, either. I'm talking any action whatsoever. 80 of the 90 minutes are of Vincent Gallo driving across the country.

I'm a huge movie fan, and will watch anything. Sure, there are movies I haven't loved, but I can honestly say I've never seen a movie I regretted watching. This is no exception. I just can't get over how dull it was. I honestly wondered if someone hadn't slipped something into my drink about halfway through. I wonder if being high might have made it better somehow. Someone should try that and let me know.

This movie is a lot like 'Elephant' by Gus Van Sant, the movie about high school kids that shoot up the school. I was so excited about the movie, and had heard it was a great social commentary. It sucked. It was so boring. There were numerous scenes of kids simply walking to and fro class. I guess I just don't get how that drives the plot whatsoever. In my opinion, they could have left out all of that crap and focused more on the social aspect of the film.

That's how I felt about 'The Brown Bunny'. It's obviously about a man grieving for a lost love. I get that. But please. 80 minutes of driving? How is that helpful at all? I just don't get it.

Here's a funny line from Vincent Gallo about bunnies: "When I see bunnies on the golf course, or in the backyard, I feel that's a safe place. I'm in love with those animals, even in a carnivorous way. They're my favorite meat." Wow. I love dogs, but wouldn't think twice about eating them. That's just wrong.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

take this job and shove it

Being back at work after 5 days off in a row really sucks. I guess it doesn't help that I STILL feel like crap. I just want to be home, lounging in my PJs on the couch, watching horrible daytime TV like Dr. Phil, Oprah, and Ambush Makeover, and sipping on tea and hot cocoa. Is that too much to ask?

I decided I don't want to work anymore. I always hear people say they'd get bored after a couple of weeks, but I truly don't see that happening. I could watch TV and movies, read, putter around the house, or surf the internet. I'd be in heaven. Seriously, I could never get tired of TV, movies, or reading. Maybe it's because I lack drive and ambition. I am okay being with myself all day. I don't need petty interaction with coworkers. Ah, sweet joy. I guess it's something to look forward to in retirement. Why can't some distant relative I've never heard of keel over and leave me millions? I'll keep dreaming.

At least the job I have is a good one. Today I got a really nice vase of flowers to celebrate my one year anniversary. How nice is that? I was pleasantly surprised. I've been here a year, and the place still surprises me. My brain still isn't used to working for nice, trusting people.

Now I'm just counting the hours till I can go home and sink into the couch.

Sunday, January 01, 2006


So it's 2006. That's crazy. I can't believe how fast 2005 went by. I hope this year doesn't go so fast. I guess that's how it goes when you get older.

I was supposed to go and get a tattoo on Friday morning, but I was sick. This sickness is the worst - it just won't go away, no matter how much medicine I take (and believe me, I've tried it all). I am going to get this (the inset image) on the ball of my shoulder. I want it on both, but am going to do one at a time. I can't handle much more than that. My first didn't hurt too bad though. Not nearly as bad as I thought. Kind of like a cat slowly scratching you with a claw. Q took pics of it while it was being done. Pretty cool.

Despite being sick, we had a great party at our house last night. Our friends came in town from Ireland, so that was really cool. I miss hanging out with them! We always have so much fun together. Crude pictures were taken with passed out people, Asshole was played, tons of booze was downed, and we missed having champagne at midnight (who can stand that god awful Ryan Seacrest for more than two minutes?), but believe me, plenty of champagne was had after that. Overall, a good time was had by all. N8 & MT, gear up for us on St. Patty's Day in '07!

V & CB brought us these really cool drinking games. One is shot glass roulette, and the other is shot glass darts. Both are guaranteed to get you drunk fast, unless, of course, you're shooting champagne. Not recommended at all.

Happy '06 to all.