Ernest Hemingway:

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

Thursday, September 28, 2006

party pooper

A friend of mine told me she's going to a 1st birthday party for the child of a friend of hers this weekend. The parents created a gift registry at Target for the party, so she had to go to Target to get a present.

I was horrified. A gift registry for a 1st birthday party? I shudder to think of the floodgates that'll open if this sort of thing becomes acceptable. Why deal with a registry? Why not type out a gift list and send it along with the invitation? Or better yet, just include a little index card telling guests exactly what to get. Ridiculous.

Whatever happened to surprises? Or just getting together to celebrate with friends and family? Sheesh. That's nervy, if you ask me. Telling people what to buy your kid, or that you have to buy them anything at all. I'm getting so sick of registries in general. I find myself ignoring them completely. That's not to say I go and pick out some random kitchen gadget or weirdo colored towels. I get gift cards, or cookbooks, or other interesting items. Registries just leave a bad taste in my mouth.

I'm guilty of having one. I'll admit that. I had a registry for my wedding 5 years ago. We registered at JC Penny and Target. We asked for silverware, plates, towels, bedsheets, and simple things like that to replace the crap we still had from college. I can't tell you how many registries I see with MP3 players, video cameras, TVs, and the like. It's gotten out of control. I thought weddings are about starting a life together and gifts are supposed to be about helping the couple get set up with the basics.

I told my friend I'd refuse to buy off a registry for a 1st birthday party. Heck, I won't even buy my sister a shower/wedding gift from her registry. She checks it all the time! Where's the fun in that?

Wow. I sound like a grouchy old lady. I think I need a vacation. Good thing I'm going to an out of town wedding this weekend - gift card in tow, no doubt.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

who you calling irrational?

It's been a crazy week. I'm actually busy all day long at work. They've got some nerve. That leaves basically no time for blogging during work, and since I'm on the computer all day, I want no part of it at night.

So today I have a free minute, since the boss left to go out of town. We were discussing irrational fears this morning. Odd, yes, since I work at a financial firm. But we often discuss odd things. Anyway, he was reading somewhere that the top 3 fears of whatever sort of population was surveyed are 1. plane crash, 2. shark attack, and 3. being murdered. Interesting, huh? Turns out the top four ways to die are caused by 1. smoking, 2. poor diet, 3. inactivity, and 4. excessive drinking.

I'm not really afraid of dying. If I get eaten by a shark, so be it. At least it's an interesting way to die. I do seem to have an irrational fear of falling down the stairs. Not just stumbling, but all out face diving from the top stair. Maybe it's high heels. Maybe it's because I did that once, and luckily only scraped my legs and hands. No broken bones. Maybe it's like post-traumatic stress disorder. I don't know.

The funny thing is it's probably some lazy fool sitting on his couch munching on popcorn and wings and guzzling alcohol all day long that's afraid of being eaten by a shark. Now that's irrational.

Friday, September 22, 2006

a friday ha ha

Provided (shockingly) by Q -

FART FOOTBALL................

An old married couple no sooner hit the pillows when the old man passes gas and says, 'Seven points.'

His wife rolls over and says, 'What in the world was that?'

The old man replies, 'It's fart football.'

A few minutes later his wife lets one go and says, 'Touchdown, tie score.'

After about five minutes the old man lets another one go and says, 'Aha. I'm ahead 14 to 7.'

Not to be outdone the wife rips out another one and says, 'Touchdown, tie score.'

Five seconds go by and she lets out a little squeaker and says, 'Field goal, I lead 17 to 14.' Now the pressure is on the old man.

He refuses to get beaten by a woman, so he strains real hard. Since defeat is totally unacceptable, he gives it everything he's got, and accidentally poops in the bed.

The wife says, 'What the hell was that?'

The old man says, 'Half time, switch sides.'

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

peeing, camping, and reminiscing

Last night during the biweekly meeting of my writer's group we got on the subject of peeing in public (it made sense in the context - really it did). I remembered the first time I peed outside. I was a sophomore in college. A group of us decided to illegally camp at a nearby park known for it's amazing river bluffs. We got the necessary supplies (beer, pot, tent) and piled into a friend's Saab - I'm talking at least 7 of us in this car. We got to the park after dark, and had to weave our way up and through the craggy bluffs to the riverbed, where we set up camp. Halfway through the bluffs we heard a park ranger following and yelling at us, so we decided to run at full speed with the gear to escape. It worked. I'm not sure why he didn't follow us all the way, but somehow we lucked out.

I'd been camping only once before, with my date after our junior prom. Just the two of us. I guess my parents must have trusted him, or me, or both. That was before my major shenanigans, so I guess they had reason to trust me. And they should have trusted him/me - we didn't do anything at all except talk and sleep. He was a good boy. Anyway, there were bathrooms, so no need to pee outside.

There were no bathrooms at this park, however, since no camping was allowed. I remember the girls huddling up and wandering away from camp to pee. It's not so weird for girls to pee together, especially those that grew up with sisters. Had there been a guy with us, I probably wouldn't have done it. Too embarrassing.

That was a great night, up until the sleeping part. We all crammed into one tent, and it was chilly. I got stuck all the way at the edge of the tent, and basically had my head shoved into the side, and got to inhale plastic all night. Not fun. No egg crate mattresses, no sleeping bags.

It's a great memory, though, one of MANY from my college days. Then I remembered that two of the people there that night are both dead now. One, the owner of the Saab, was actually killed in that very Saab by a drunk driver just after college. The other, Shorty, took her own life last year.

Death is still so weird to me, when it's someone young. I can remember both of their faces clear as day. I remember their voices, their laughs, their eyes when they laughed. How can they be gone? Where are they? It's one of those mind fucks, like trying to imagine life after death - spending an eternity in a box in the ground. Very creepy and black-hole-ish.

It's especially hard when both were people I loved very much. I had a huge crush on the guy, and he was a good friend. He was probably one of the nicest, most carefree people I've ever met. And of course I loved Shorty. She was a huge part of my life, and most of my memories from either high school or college can't be separated from her. I hope maybe they've found each other somewhere. I know Shorty always had a crush on him too, even while dating his best friend. That would be perfect.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

to the moon!

A few days ago I read this headline:

Lawmaker Proposes Shooting Madonna Into Space

I opened it up, excitedly assuming this 'lawmaker' wanted to shoot her into space to rid the world of her forever. I was sorely disappointed. Turns out someone in Russia is lobbying for her to be a 'space tourist', hoping the media time that would undoubtedly be spent on this would be a good thing for both Russian and American elections in 2008.

I'm on board with sending her into space. But permanently. Just think - no more 'kabbalah this', or 'Lourdes that', or 'my husband doesn't like my music', or having to read about how she continually craps on the Catholic Church in an effort, I suppose, to regain some of the controversy that helped launch her career in the first place.

We get it, Madonna. You're trying, again, to be edgy and dramatic. Unfortunately it ends up being more pathetic than anything. Come to think of it, maybe this trip into space is just the thing your career needs.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

365 days

I've officially been blogging for a year. By 'blogging' I mean dumping the contents of my brain for others to read and enjoy, and sometimes maybe even laugh at.

Hopefully I haven't pissed anyone off, but if so, grow some thicker skin, folks. I'm just a dorky girl writing an even dorkier blog. You can't be offended by anything I say. Seriously.

I'm gonna keep trucking along. There's just too darn much crazy shit in this world to be ignored. Here's to another fucked up year!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

that big ol' Tony Little

Back in June Q and I got new pillows for our birthdays from his parents. This is the pillow:

It's a Homedics pillow apparently designed and marketed by Tony Little, the crazy long-haired exercise guru. It's odd, yes, but I'm game to try just about anything. At first, we used it with the long chamber at the top of our heads. It was just a guess. I didn't see an instruction manual. Or maybe didn't look for one, since it's a PILLOW.

It wasn't all that great. I kept using it, but Q gave up. I finally figured out it was backwards one day by mistake. It had flipped itself around somehow (it's magical like that). It was a totally different sleeping experience. Now I'm hooked. I don't have neck problems anymore. I used to get a stiff neck at least once a month. No more! It's like my own little chiropractor.

There's definitely something to this pillow. I don't know if it's the micropedic beads or the fancy chambers, but it's there. No more tossing and turning, and it's even comfortable whilst laying on my stomach. This little pillow has somehow made our cheap-ass saggy matress comfortable. It's a miracle worker.

And besides, this guy says it works. How can I argue with that?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Savvis Center...or Scottrade Center???

Wow. That's insane. As some of you may know, I used to be a minion of Scottrade, Inc. Now they've bought the freaking naming rights to the old Savvis Center! That's so fucked up. A company that won't go public instead chooses to spend it's money naming an arena. Something is so wrong about that.

I was just talking about this shithole this afternoon while enjoying a beer (or two) on the company dime. My boss and I decided that if the company was going to make us do a performance review on me, we should ditch out for the afternoon and drink beer. It gave us an opportunity to discuss our working relationship (while trading dirt about others in the company - we're two peas in a pod, really), which is always entertaining, being as I came from a company fully ingrained in Nazi practices.

One of the questions on my review had to do with punctuality. I'm always there at least a few minutes early, so this wasn't even remotely a problem. My boss, however, is completely not concerned with this issue. He doesn't give two shits whether I'm there on time, as long as I'm getting my work done. It makes sense, in an adult-like world. Unfortunately, Scottrade has no idea what it's like to function in an adult-like world. I remember having to clock in and out on our computers, and seriously getting in trouble if we were a minute late. I'm not exaggerating. A minute. It was completely absurd.

The best was when we moved to a new building (the current location at Manchester and 270) and took over the cafeteria. Management decided we should eat there, to patronize part of the company. We were allowed to order in from other companies, but we were told to restrict this activity to once a week. Blood Ray, my former cube mate, thought this was hilarious, and made it his goal to order out as often as possible. Being that we didn't get a lunch hour and were forced to eat at our desks amidst phone calls from morons at branch offices, it did seem a bit much to have to eat at the overpriced, gross cafeteria. I think for both Blood Ray and I it was one of the final straws on the proverbial camel's back.

Anyway, I had to laugh at the whole situation. I wonder if they're going to throw some massive party about the whole thing. They probably will, but only for the big wigs, not for the poor bastards doing all the work behind the scenes, earning Roger Riney all of his money. Bleh.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Q bought me the prettiest little road bike this past weekend. Isn't he the best? We got it at a neat-o bike shop in the city, right near the Botanical Gardens. It's called Bicycle Works. It's a non-profit organization that teaches kids all about the mechanics of bikes, as well as bike safety. Once a child has completed the class, he gets a free bike, as well as a helmet. Pretty cool. They also take donations, refurbish the donated bikes, and sell them to the general public.

Since I know nothing about bikes except that I hate my old mountain bike (purchased for cheap at Target) and wanted a nifty road bike, I figured I'd try this place so I wouldn't end up spending a fortune. I didn't really expect to find anything. Q and I went there on Saturday and looked around the very small shop teeming with youngsters fixing up bikes, and saw the one pictured above. I liked its style. I don't like girl bikes at all (why do guys bikes have a bar straight across and girls don't? shouldn't it be the other way around?), but this one is kind of a combo. It's an old, french bike - a Motobecane - that's been modified a bit. It was actually being held for another woman, but since she hadn't been back in a couple of weeks, they gave it to me. My lucky day!

I love it. Not only do I look dandy, but I have to expend about half the energy to make it go as fast as my mountain bike did. I zip right along. It's not so comfy on bumps, but as long as I stick to a trail or road, it's fine. If you want a bike, check this place out. They've got all sorts of frames, as well as normal bikes, and vintage bikes. It's really cool. You just might find what you're looking for, and spend a lot less! Plus you're helping out the kiddies.

Monday, September 04, 2006

life's little ironies

So is it creepier that Steve Irwin, aka the Crocodile Hunter, died by a stingray, or Timothy Treadwell, aka the Grizzly Man, died by a grizzly bear? I can't decide. On one hand, the Crocodile Hunter worked with a lot of dangerous animals. It makes sense that any of them could kill him. The Grizzly Man, worked solely with grizzlies. Not worked with them so much as lived among them. If you haven't seen the movie, I highly recommend it. It's very disturbing, among other things.

Is it ironic that a man known for wrestling angry crocs meets his doom at the barb of a stingray? Or is it nature's cruel way? Let's face it - they guy tempted fate. Many, many times. It seems fate stuck its dirty knife right in his heart.

I'm not being insensitive. I'm sure he didn't deserve to die young. I'm sure he was a fine, fine human being. But if you live a life chock full o' risk, it's gonna beat down your door eventually.

Back to the Grizzly Man. That was one creepy dude. I'm convinced he was gay, and in an effort to suppress this deep inside himself (he wasn't the most stable guy), he found 'acceptance' among the grizzlies. Of all creatures! Why not seals? Or some other prominent, yet more docile, Alaskan animal? Shit. He lived with the grizzlies for something like thirteen years. His time was well overdue. The nut even tried to change the course of nature once so the grizzlies wouldn't starve to death and eat their young - he tried to divert a shallower-than-normal river (due to a lack of rainfall) so the salmon could make their way upstream and the grizzlies would have enough to eat. Once he found out Mother Nature wasn't so easy to fool, he went back to his tent and did a little 'rain prayer' - though it was much more like a rain freak out - and it rained. What a fucking weirdo.

The best part of the whole movie (he taped himself a lot out there) was when he taped himself doing a little recap of one of the summers he spent out there. He did a couple of takes, then freaked the fuck out, calling out the park rangers, cursing them and the residents of the nearby town left and right. It went on for a good five minutes. He was only 'protecting' the bears. As if grizzlies need protecting. They will tear your ass up. Then he took a deep breath, and did another take of the recap. Hilarious. There was another time when he was SURE some local hunters were out to maim him (he was a bit of a celebrity in the neighboring towns - or a local nutjob). Someone left a rock with 'grizzly man' on it and a smiley face. He was convinced they were threatening him, and he freaked out (he did that a lot) and got all paranoid. If he wasn't in the middle of the Alaskan wilderness, I'd say he was high on PCP the entire time. I swear.

He actually had the camera running when a bear mauled and killed both himself and his 'girlfriend' (who, coincidentally, was afraid of grizzlies). The lens cap was on, but all the sound was captured. Can you imagine hearing that? The guy who made the documentary listened to it on camera...he couldn't finish it. It was that horrifying. It made my stomach turn just watching him listen to it. Completely gutwrenching.

Seriously, though, I felt totally sad for this guy. He was a sad, sad man. He just couldn't figure out what to do with his life, and found solace in the weirdest place ever, with the weirdest companions. I also felt horrible when they shot the bear that killed him. I'm sure he wouldn't have wanted that in a million years. As crazy as he was, he knew the entire time he was in danger. I think, anyway, until he got so delusional he thought he was a bear. It's true. He did.

Anyway, the moral of the story is to leave Mother Nature the fuck alone. It's wonderful to admire animals and plants and what not - but let them be. She will kick your ass in the end.