Sunday, December 31, 2006


Saturday, December 30, 2006


Friday, December 29, 2006

NBC news reports Saddam Hussein has been executed. Can we go home now?

FAUX agrees

...and now so does CNN
Friday Cat Blogging

... the tail end of the year.
Friday Photo-Blogging

Yay! And this is so not /Chandler Bing> a lame way to get out of posting a real entry. These were taken around Christmas, around Raleigh. And yes I carried my camera around with me a lot. If you really think about it, everything is a photo-op.

Be safe, and have a great New Year!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

If I should sleep before I wake…

You know the best parts about having several days off in row? The whole bed time? I don’t need no stinkin’ bed time! I can stay up as late as I want! part, followed up quickly by the I can sleep until I wake up! I don’t need no stinkin’ alarm to get me up! part!

I did that the whole time off. If I didn’t get around to putting that DVD in until 10:30pm, then so be it! I could watch that movie until midnight and then go read my book until 1:30 and it was all right. I could do that. Stay up really late and then sleep in. Heaven.

Then out of nowhere it was Tuesday night and all of sudden I had to think about going back to work. Bummer. Work starts awfully early in the morning and I had changed my definition of “getting up early” from “sixish” to “eightish”. It really didn’t take long at all. I said to myself the evening of Christmas Day, “Hmmm. We’re going shopping; I should really set an alarm. I really should think about getting up early, I want to be serious about this; I think eight is early”. My people are not “door buster" people. We do not shop at six in the morning. We may not get the best of the picked over post-Christmas goodies but we do get to sleep past four in the morning. It’s a trade off we are willing to make. It’s simple really. On one hand you have the chance to bag 65 percent off pink, lime green and fuchsia hoodies in sizes 2, 4, 18, 20 and on the other hand you have sleeping past dawn and the same hoodies in sizes 2 and 18. Really, does anyone really need a size 4 fuchsia hoodie? What is the better value over all? Sleeping in or getting your hands on the last size 4 pink hoodie? If you have to ask, you should get whatever hoodie best matches the bags under your eyes. You deserve each other.

The day after Thanksgiving is an entirely different story. Did you know that the stores don’t re-order Christmas stuff? If you don’t grab that dancing Santa two weeks before Halloween, it is not going to be there the next time you are Don’t wait until actual December to get your Christmas decorations because by two or three days before Christmas, all that shite is in the 50 percent off bin and the rest of the store is all about Valentines Day.


Tuesday night I try to get back into my routine. I’m tired, I’m ready for bed, there is nothing I need to watch on TV, I’m going to … read the magazines I got in the mail. Fine. I can speed read. It’s not like Entertainment Weekly is really going to cause strain and then it was only like twenty after 10 and I really can’t go to sleep that early. So I read my Texas Monthly and its Bum Steer award time!. Okay, so its’ twenty after eleven. I turn off the light and go to sleep.

Or not.

I’m waiting.

And my leg hurts.

And sleeping in such away as to not pain my leg is pulling my hair.


Did I mention that The Kitty is awake too?

Kitty is awake at 1:10am and 1:45 am and 2:20am and 4:00am

And that damn Kitty is smart too. I finally get up and go to put him in his crate. Kitty disappears down a rabbit hole and I can’t find him. He knows! He knows if I catch him he’s going into his crate! He has a brain the size of a walnut and he still manages to learn! he knows if I really want to find him I have to weight how much I want to make him stop verses how much I really, really want to be in bed. I have to decided how awake I want to be at a given time, is it worth it to find him or should I just go back to “sleep”. 3:15 am and he’s still awake. We have so much in common.

Santa brought me my airblown snowglobe!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Due to circumstances...

...completely within my control, regularly scheduled posting will resume as soon as I finish playing with my new toys.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006


Monday, December 25, 2006


Sunday, December 24, 2006


Saturday, December 23, 2006


Friday, December 22, 2006

Friday Cat Blogging

Merry Chatmas!!
Santa Claus Is Coming To...

...Land his sleigh on the next radio station that plays the same eight carols twelve times a day. If they must play the same damn songs over and over you could at least mix it up a bit. For Instance.

At-ten-de ad te, no-li fle-re
no-li plo-ra-re, aus-cul-ta me;
Santa Claus ve-nit ad ur-bem.
Ta-bu-lam fa-cit
In-spi-cit-que bis;
Sci-tu-rus quis sit
Ma-lus et bo-nus.
Santa Claus ve-nit ad ur-bem.
Te vi-det dor-mi-en-tem,
No-vit vi-gi-lan-tem,
No-vit a-gen-tem-ben(e) et non;
I-gi-tur ne ma-lus sis!
At-ten-de ad te, no-li fle-re
No-li plo-ra-re, aus-cul-ta me,
Santa Claus ve-nit ad ur-bem.

That is the way for Santa To Come To Town. And if you're going to flog Rudolf, try it like this:

Ru-dol-phus tur-pis re-no
Cla-rum nasum habuit;
Et si illum vidisti;
Tu dixisti ardarsit;
Omnis allius reno
Diu ridebat nomine;
Rudolphum numquam sinebat
Remo ludo ludere.
Tum nubilis dies Christi
Santus venti dix (it),
"Rudolphe naso claro, duces hoc nocte carro."
Tum reno hunc amavit
Laeti clauserant omnes,
"Rudolphe, turpis reno, in tabulis referes

Much Better. And while you're doing the Latin right Way, take those Merry Gentleman to school.

O viri, este hilares et bono animo,
Salvator Christus est hoc tempore festo,
Ut nos errantes liveret summo periculo,
O rem unam laetissimam, Laetisssimam
O rem unam laetissimam!
De Caelo Pater misit, in terram angelum
Qui quosdam ad postores afferret nuntium!
In Bethleham natum esse ipsius Filium
O rem etc.
Jangle Those Bells
Tinnitus, tinnitus,
Semper tinnitus.
O tautum et gaudium
Dum vemimur in traha! Ha!

All these were lifted bodily from The Latin Song Book (or the were back in 2003 when this was first posted, the site is no longer with us)

Christmas songs I'm nottired of:

Merry Christmas from the family

Mom got drunk and Dad got drunk
At our Christmas party
We were drinkin' champagne punch
And homemade eggnog
Little sister brought her new boyfriend
He was a Mexican
We didn't know what to think of him
'Til he sang Feliz Navidad
Feliz Navidad

Brother Ken brought his kids with him
The three from his first wife Lynn
And the two identical twins
From his second wife MaryNell
Of course he brought his new wife Kaye
Who talks all about AA
Chain smokin' while the stereo plays
Noel, Noel, The first Noel

Carve the turkey turn the ball game on
Mix margaritas when the eggnog's gone
Send somebody to the Quik-Pak store
We need some ice and an extension cord
A can of bean dip and some Diet Rite
A box of tampons and some Marlboro Lights
Hallelujah everybody say cheese
Merry Christmas from the family

Fran and Rita drove from Harlingen
I can't remember how I'm kin to them
But when they tried to plug their motorhome in
They blew our Christmas lights
Cousin David knew just what went wrong
So we all waited on our front lawn
He threw the breaker and the lights came on
And we sang Silent Night
Oh Silent Night

Carve the turkey turn the ball game on
Mix margaritas when the eggnog's gone
Send somebody to the Quik-Pak store
We need some ice and an extension cord
A can of bean dip and some Diet Rite
A box of tampons and some Marlboro Lights
Hallelujah everybody say cheese
Merry Christmas from the family

Carve the turkey turn the ballgame on
Make Bloody Marys cause we all want one
Send somebody to the Stop 'n Go
We need some celery and a can of fake snow
A bag of lemons and some Dite Sprite
A box of tampons and some Salem Lights
Hallelujah everybody say cheese
Merry Christmas from the family

And just for old times sake,

Adeste Fideles, Laeti triumphantes,
Venite, venite ad Bethlehem.
Natum videte, Regem Angelorum.
Venite adoremus, Venite adoremus
Venite adoremus Dominum.
Cantet nunc Io! Chorus Angelorum,
Cantet nunc aula Caelestium.
Gloria, gloria, in excelsis Deo.
Venite etc.
Ergo qui natus, Deo hodierno,
Iesu, tibi sit gloria.
Patris Aeterni, verbum caro factum
Venite etc

And with that I wish you and yours a wonderful holiday. I’ll be back after Christmas! Be safe.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Name of final Harry Potter book announced

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows."
Happy Happy

Today is Broskeys birthday!


Now, onto a completly different subject.


Do ya'll get mailings from pre-need services? Once you pass whatever the current magic mile marker the AARP has set up, they have your number and they will never let you or any of their venders forget it. Wake up one day feeling especially good? Check the mail and there will inevitably be a postcard from some pre-need burial services that thanks to the AARP, has your name.

Hey, you think you’re in the best shape of your life, you feel good and possibly even look good. Plan your funeral now.

I get two or three of these a month, inevitably on days when I’ve managed to fool myself and my doctor into believing that that I’m healthy and in good shape. Those pre-need people never rest, it doesn’t matter what the insurance company says your life expectancy is, your genes, your lifestyle – those people want you to remember that you are going to die!! And that if you don’t do start paying for your funeral right now, today even, well, something bad will happen. They want your money and they want it now.

Pre-need – You are going to die.
Average person - I’m 35
PN – Oh, you’re going to die!
AP – I’m healthy.
PN – You could get hit by a truck tomorrow.
AP – If I do get hit by a truck tomorrow, what good will one day of pre-need burial insurance get me?
PN- Peace of mind.
AP- Peace of mind and what? I would bet you won’t pay up after just one payment.
PN – Your wishes will be respected.
AP – If my wishes were respected I wouldn’t have been hit by a truck.
PN – It could happen. We’re all going to die.
AP – Okay, what about if I don’t die. If I just keep on going, you know world’s oldest person territory?
PN - Your wishes will be respected, regardless of your life expectancy.
AP – How are you keeping track of these things? I mean, in 64 years technology will have changed. Your staff will have turned over, how will my interests be protected?
PN- We are pre-need specialists.
AP -If I live to be 89 and I send you $35 a month from now until then, that’s $420 a year times 64 years equals $26, 880, that is in today’s money, my research says that will get me something in the “respectful” range of caskets and what? Flowers are really expensive. Does the insurance cover flowers? How about my clergy? What if in 64 years time my family have become Scientology members? Does your insurance protect my interests clergywise?
PN – Peace of mind.
AP – I’m going to be dead, I’ll have achieved peace prior to the funeral. What do I care?
PN – Your family’s peace of mind!
AP – If in 64 years my surviving family members have lost their minds?
PN – Your insurance will make sure your wishes are respected.
AP – What if I lose my mind somewhere along the way and I want some kind of cult funeral? How does that affect my pre-paid pre-needs that I made pre-cult? Who keeps track of all this? Oh. My . God. They haven’t even been born yet. My death will be handled by some one not yet living. I’m not sure I like that.
PN – It’s all about peace of mind.

I think I want to be surprised. I wonder if they offer a grab bag option?

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

The Shopoholic

My new project is to start stopping doing my Christmas shopping.

I did my Christmas shopping. I am done with Christmas shopping. Been there, bought that. Everybody has what they are going to get, for better or for worse. They asked for it they got it... or in reality, if they asked after they got what they are going to get, they'll get what I got. I just need to remind myself of that when I go to the store and see the perfect thing. I all ready have the perfect thing. I have many "perfect" things. I am finished. I just have to stop buying things it’s a sickness. I go months without buying anything for anybody, my shopping muscles atrophy and I can actually go into a store and walk around and find no urge to buy anything. I can go to a mall and walk out empty handed. A little Christmas shopping later and I’m like Carrie Bradshaw at a two for one Manolo Blahnik sale.

It’s very hard though. I like buying things. Its fun, it’s validating and it makes me feel like someone with money. I must have money because here I am spending it and even better, I am not spending it on me, so it’s selfless shopping, it’s like Christmas cookies, so bad and yet so good.

After Doggers Santa picture I decided to reward myself for being so good and took myself to Tuesday Morning… This is a very dangerous store. It’s full of things I really want and actually, in most cases need - I did not however “need” the very cute Santa figurine I got, that was on sale, so I got it. So it instantly went form a “want” to a “need” – like the very cute baby clothes for Tiny E. She wants new clothes and if they are on sale she really, really needs new clothes. She’s a baby, she grows out of stuff. She did not need the tiny parka I saw though. I know she wants another tiny parka, what baby who has spent most of her life living in 70 degree weather does not want another tiny pink parka, true, she all ready has a tiny pink parka, but she wants another one. I know she does. I’ve been shopping with her and I’ve watched her eyeing the infant parkas. She can’t get enough of them. She wants mood parkas!!

I did not get the tiny pink parka, as it turned out, I was in a great big area rug mood.

There was an area rug that would have been gorgeous in my living room. I really, really need a new area rug in there. For real. My old one has holes and it’s not really big enough and, and, and. I didn’t get the rug either. I thought about it though. The biggest drawback, well other then the price, which I never did find out because it wasn’t listed... was the size - It was very large. Very, very large. Perhaps too large for Minnie to carry. This may lead to the thought that if the rug is too bug for the van that it may also be too large for the room. This would be unfortunate. It also looked heavy and I wanted to wander the store and I couldn’t do that if I was dragging an area rug with me. You have to set priorities. I could get the rug or I could look at the scratched and dented section. The Rug or the deep discounts, one but not both. Kind of like the Lady or The Tiger but not really. There was no tiger.

Perhaps, one day, I will make another pilgrimage to Ikea, the land of nice, vaguely affordable area rugs. Did you know that Round Rock, Texas has an Ikea? Round Rock! The home of Leather Face and many, many, in my memory - many, single wide trailers. Raleigh doesn’t have an Ikea and we are also are home to many single wide trailers. It makes me sad, what if I don’t want to travel to Virginia to buy a rug. Why should Round Rock have an Ikea and Raleigh not? The Scandinavians suck.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Things that go whooshing by in the light

(Blogger was bloggered by Blogger)

I did well by my vow to do as little as possible. I did do laundry and I did take Dogger for a walk. I also went shopping. All in two days! I impress myself with my own slothfulness. I think I will try to be as slothful as possible for the coming weeks. I mean, if I am the only one who is going watch the faux pine needles pile up in not-so-faux piles on the carpet, are they really piling up? I don’t think so. You really have to have witness statements to back up any allegations of poor housekeeping. If I don’t think the house is in need of tidying, then the house is arguably not in need of tidying. Dogger and Kitty have no vote.

You can also give the appearance of a clean house by the liberal use of air freshener. A house that smells gives the impression of a house that is indeed clean – whether it is or not. You spray a little air freshener on a dust gerbil and it instantly transforms into a fun homemade potpourri craft project. Try it.

Oh, and I took Dogger for her annual picture with Santa:

I think the gingerbread man looks a little disturbed, but isn’t she adorable? She didn’t pee on Santa or in front of Santa or on Santa’s little patch of indoor-outdoor grass. Yay Dogger. She did however think that the treats bowl on the “elves” table was all hers because she was so adorable and should eat all of them. I think they didn’t take into account that tall dogs would come to see Santa too.

During one of Doggers walks this weekend I ran into a man standing in his driveway. I was happily plugged into my Faux Pod so I thought he was just doing a little yard work, perhaps putting up his Christmas lights. No, in fact he was trying to ask me if I saw the gigantic killer Giant Horned Owl that had just tried to jack him and his rake.

He was quite elderly and he said while he knew what a great horned owl was, he had never had one try to mug him. He was a little concerned that the owl may try to come back to finish the job. I told him that Broskey and Alphagal had one that lived in a tree in front of their last home. He asked what they did with it. I told him that they left it alone.

Little Old Man – It was four feet tall and had eyes just like a person!
Me – Broskey and Alphagal had one in a tree in their yard
LOM – What did they do with it?
Me – They left it alone.
LOM – Do they (owls, not Broskey and Alphagal) go after people? It had eyes like a person!
Me - No! They eat voles, other birds, cats, rats, small dogs, snakes, you know, vermin.
LOM – Snakes! They go after snakes!? They would carry off a dog?
Me – Well, small snakes and really little dogs.
LOM – It had eyes like a person and it stood 4 feet high!! There’s one there must be more back there!!

Dogger and I took off before the old mans Pteranodon came back. I didn’t want to have to bond with a day flying Great Horned Owl. I just cheeked Wikipedia, and Great Horned Owls don’t get to be four feet tall. I don't know what that man saw, but it’s a good thing Dogger and I left when we did.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Monday Photo-blogging

Variations on a theme My Jewish readers are in the midst of Chanukah and for the gentiles, Christmas is just days away and everyone is rushing, rushing - take a minute and go look at the pretty lights.

NBC is rerunning last weeks Christmas Show episode of Studio 30 on the Sunset Strip - If you don't normally watch Studio 60, you should and this is a very strong episode to start with - it's not only a really good episode it also features a beautiful jazz arrangement of "Oh Holy Night" performed by displaced musicians from New Orleans. If you haven't heard this version of the old standard, you should ( Last week when the show aired it the first time, I was in tears by the last note and wondering who I should make my check out to) The show airs 9pm central/10 eastern on you NBC affiliate.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


Saturday, December 16, 2006


Friday, December 15, 2006

Friday Cat Blogging

Stuffing your stockings

I need new stockings. I just noticed this. You would think I would have noticed that there was a runner in the toe large enough to out my entire foot though. I would have noticed this, but I’m not at my best in the morning, I see a stocking, I put on the stocking, I put the shoe on, I move on. I’m all about moving on.

I’m pretty sure this isn’t a new runner either. I’m pretty sure I noticed this before and said to myself “Wow. I should throw this away”, but I notice this while I’m at work and I’m not really in a position to throw away a stocking in the middle of the day. Someone might notice that I am wandering around with only one stocking and then there is the whole sticking to the shoe part or the catching cold part and, well, I forget about it again.

Eventually I go home and take off the stocking and dutifully put the stocking into the laundry and then from there it is literally lather, wash, repeat. They don’t look torn so they go back into the rotation and then after a while I notice that one of my stockings feel weird. It’s a never ending story. What I should do when I notice a torn stocking is to just throw it away ASAP. Tell the people at work I am channeling Miami Vice and then at lunch go to Target and buy a new pair. Or a pre-packaged bunch of pairs.

This time of year though I am loath to buy myself things. I should write a letter to Santa:

Dear Santa,

Please go to Target and bring me knew knee high stockings in black and navy blue. I promise I would bitch about getting socks for Christmas; I will be totally cool with it. I would also like a leaf blower and film for Minnie’s windows, not really dark film, don’t feel the need to pimp my ride or anything, just enough so that Dogger doesn’t get a tan in the back seat. She has very sensitive skin.



I don’t see anything wrong with asking for stuff you will use for Christmas, it’s not just about getting stuff for someone that they would not buy for themselves, you know, like things that they may not find useful. While earrings and froffry things are nice and everyone likes getting toys, sometimes you really do genuinely want stockings. There ain’t nothing wrong with finding a ten pack of knee highs under the tree, if you catch my drift. Not every gift has to be special and wonderful and one of a kind. 10 of a kind can be very kewl too.

You know what I want to get accomplished this weekend? Nothing. I don’t want to have to get anything done. I want to watch movies and maybe take care of the laundry. But I’m not going to run around like I did last weekend and this week too, now that I think of it. My goal for the weekend is to have no goals.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Preach on

Bakker, Brown: What the hell happened to Christianity?"

Well, first off, son, I'd go ask your Daddy...
Awards Season

Golden Globe Nominations, Film and TV
Healthy Choice

The candy machine guy as abandoned us. There isn’t even any gum! I mean the gum in the machine hadn’t changed in the five and a half years I’ve been here, but now its’ gone! We’ve never been left so destitute that the even the gum was gone. In the past we’ve had less than attentive candy machine guys but we were never left so desperate we actually had to buy the gum. I don’t want to be so desperate for a fix that I would buy five year old gum. The over priced toaster pops are even gone and I thought those were being ignored as a statement - .95 cents for toaster pops? Not gonna happen. The only thing left to buy in the machine now is the “Wellness Committee” sanctioned health food. When the candy machine guy has left your office with a candy machine full of granola bars and trail mix – Your candy machine guy has truly forsaken your office.

My co-worker describes our candy machine guy as “Under motivated”. At some point along the way she wrung a promise out of him to come by and check the machine at least twice a month. This was a year ago. He comes when and only when the machine is completely empty. I don’t know how he knows this, perhaps the machine send out some high frequency whine when it becomes lonely or maybe there is some black ops style scale under the machine that keeps track of its weight? I don’t know, but since there are still bags of trail mix to keep the machine company, Mr. Candy Machine Guy is not going to be coming around.

I think he must be assuming this would be a slow time for candy machine sales. That he is thinking that this time of year the office workers would be bringing in home made goodies for the office to partake in so he wouldn’t have to bother his precious self with coming by our building to check his machines. Well, we don’t have any bakers in the building. Not a single person has thought to bring in cookies or brownies or even a box of store bought holiday doughnuts. It’s been a very lean holiday season around here. I am hoping it will pick up as we get closer to Christmas.

We’re supposed to be healthcare workers! The least healthy people on the face of the earth! We should be swimming in frosting or floating on candy fumes by this time. I am very disappointed. I work with the last smokers on the planet and I’m pretty sure we are the only building in the western hemisphere where the smokers don’t have to hike to another zip code to smoke. We have so many lifetime smokers working here we had to have a car outfitted with it’s own an oxygen tank. Here they can go out the back door. With this lack of respect for health the office should be so over run with baked goods that we could be use unwanted lemon bars for sticky notes!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Yeah, about what we said before...

Appeals court to Skilling: Go directly to jail

Following a one-day reprieve, the former Enron CEO is ordered to report to prison immediately to begin serving a 24-year sentence.
The Human Top

For those of you keeping track, I finally scored some more shampoo and there was dancing through out the land. I’m sure you feel better too.

I thought I was about done with my Christmas shopping. But I guess that is what happens when you start in September, I guess its Karma for assigning your tastes to others ”You will want this doohickey. You have never mentioned the doohickey, but you will want the doohickey.” or not, maybe by the time Christmas comes around they will have come out four square against doohickeys in general or gone the other route and bought themselves the doohickey in question. It’s the price you (I) pay for being too good to go to the malls with everyone else.

It’s not that I am really too good to mix with the hoi polloi, it’s just that I don’t want to try to bond with my fellow polloi while on a mission. I want to go find what I need and be done. I fully need and expect the people to separate like the red sea and let me pass. I don’t think I’ve set my expectations too high.

I don’t mind being at the mall with the people. I actually kind of like it, I just don’t want to be there and also have things I need to get done. I want to be able to ride the tide of humanity without having to worry about hitting the rocks. I don’t want to have to go to the mall this time of year. I want to want to go to the mall and I can’t do that if I have to go to the mall.

Really, in a perfect world the mall would be by appointment only.

What else?

I emailed the Church lady in charge of cookie procurement and I haven’t heard back yet. I would call her but I’m not sure I could get through “Hi, can I want bring dog treats to your cookie sale?” without making it all one word Hi canibringdogtreatstoyourcookiesale?”I'm afraid to sound dingy. I think I would rather show up and surprise them with dog treats then have them wonder what the Dog Treat Lady would look like before I got there. I would rather not be speculated upon, especially when I’m afraid that the speculation would run to dog hair covered sweaters and eu de hound.

Maybe I’m being too sensitive.

The dog cookies are a go whether they want them or not, I made the dough last night and I’m going to bake tonight. I’m thinking of making different sizes of cookies. Some of the bigish bones, the smaller bones and maybe a handful of the really tiny gingerbread men or maybe make them all large bones because I think those are more impressive and could be sold for more – fewer treats for more money verses more treats for less. I don’t know. I would guess it would be up to them, but… See this is the over thinking part takes over and I wind up all wound up.

Okay, decision made. One tray of bigger bone shaped cookies and one tray of smaller bone shaped cookies per flavor. If I just make the smaller bones and not make the larger sized the yield will be 10 dozen cookies. This is a lot. So. I’m thinking, one tray of the smaller cookies and one tray of the larger cookies ( two flavors so two trays of small cookies and two trays of large cookies). I’m not sure how many of the larger cookies I’ll get but if it’s looking like not many, I can go ahead and just make some milk flavored treats in addition … Again, the over thinking takes over and I wind up wound up.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


So, I worked really hard all weekend, by Sunday night I wanted to take a shower, watch as much Without a Trace as I could tolerate and then go to sleep - earlyish if at ll possible.

I had to run to Broskey and Alphgals. This was not on my list! It was supposed to be shower/TV/bed! But you know, duty calls and you add an item to your list.

Duty finished I came home and preceded with my list.

Okay. Shower Time! Woo!

I got into the shower and went to wash my hair. There was no shampoo!!! How could I wash my hair with no shampoo! I even checked the baby soap I use to bath Dogger to see if it would double as shampoo - there was no mention of hair, non-whatsoever. I was at a loss. I was in the shower and according to my list, I was now at the long anticipated hair washing portion of my evening and I had no shampoo. Conditioner? lots, I am all about conditioner and am a little neurotic about maintaining my conditioner supply and keeping it well stocked. My hair needs conditioner. Ya’ll don’t know. It turns out I have kept my supply of conditioner very well stocked. It is now time to take “Buy Conditioner” off the list. I found two bottles in the shower and one in the cabinet. This news was not what I wanted to hear while standing there dripping, cold and blind trying to find stuff in the cupboard. . It’s not fun.

Time passes. Last night I am going back to Broskey and Alphagals. And I remember that we have an office Birthday today and I need to bring some cash for it. I stoped off at a grocery to write a check and get some cash. I hunted around until I found where they hide the bagged cheese - I’m going to make some dog cookies for the church and I needed to get cheese. The Church is having their annual Christmas cookie sale and I thought I would contribute some of my dog treats. It’s a billion dollar a year industry, the spoiling your dog industry and I think they’ll be able to unload fresh, homemade dog biscuits.

Not everyone wants more frosted cookies in their lives right now. They can buy dog treats and feel as though they are both contributing to the cause while not also contributing to their ass - charity has its limits. I feel bad for other people too but I don’t want to make myself self more fat in their honor ”Hi! You’re suffering and poorly nurished, in your name I will consume 678 calories!”. It seems wrong to help the hungry by feeding ourselves. I guess we’ll see if the Church ladies doing the cookie thing will accept home made dog treats to their cookie drive. If all else fails, they can call them crackers. My dog cookies could make excellent crackers. It’s all about perception, it’s a dog treat or it’s a cracker. Tomato, tomataho.

Anyway. I am at the store trying to find something to pad my otherwise$2.00 purchase and I buy batteries. I totally forgot my Sunday night shampoo debacle. My hair is still dirty, really well conditioned but dirty.

Edited to add Today in history: On Dec. 11, 1941, Germany and Italy declared war on the United States; the U.S. responded in kind.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Did List

I'm so glad to be back at work! Here, I can at least sit down and relax.

Remember my vaunted to-do list? I did. Boy did I ever. The list on Friday:

1. Decorate House
- decorations from attic
- lights from attic
- remove tree from attic
- disperse all of the above

2. Finish putting up exterior lights

3.Deal with Christmas card situation
- sign cards
- address cards
- stamp cards
- mail cards

4. wrap gifts/prep two for mailing

- mail gifts (Monday at lunch)
5. bath Dogger
6. Do laundry
- Doggers' laundry
- put away laundry from last week and the left overs from the week before.
7. Clean house

Well. I got most of it done, All of that and I was able to go check out Fayetteville Street too

Saturday, December 9, 2006


Friday, December 8, 2006

*Objects are steeper than they appear Posted by Picasa
Friday Cat Blogging

Christmas Kitty!

Well, Children it’s almost the weekend again. I didn’t give Digger a bath, but it is totally on my To-Do list for the weekend, along with getting the tree up and lit and putting the finishing touches on my outdoor lighting. I went to Wallyworld and ended up with another set of lights for outside. It wasn’t on purpose, it just happened. They were cheap and they were there and I was helpless in the face of New Lights. I can’t help myself, it’s a sickness.

My new lights and I are going to have a busy weekend. I have all the chores I was planning to do over the last five days to get done over the two day weekend. It would be much easier to be useful during the week if it would stay lighter longer! It’s dark by 5:30 and darkness does not make me want to work, darkness makes we want to put my jammies on and curl up in front of the TV – If it was getting dark at a more responsible hour I wouldn’t be jammie bound at 6pm. It’s not right.

Over the summer with its more reasonable darkness/lightness schedule I get a lot more done! There are many times that Dogger gets both a walk and time at the park, poor Dogger just barely gets any time at the park, lets not even talk about the no walks she has gotten lately. Poor sad Dogger.

The park is kind of sad right now it self. They turned off the water to the bathrooms and now there is no way to get water for the dogs. We have to bring it in ourselves. I don’t love this. Water is heavy and not easy to transport and I feel like I should because Dogger drinks like a fish while she’s there. On my ever lengthening weekend To-Do list is to fill some jugs to take up there...

It may be a moot point to take water to the park, it’s going to get really cold over the weekend and there may be no dogs at the park to drink the water and what water is there is going to freeze. Perhaps I will take off the water on my list.

What else.

I will absolutely get my tree downstairs and put together. I know I said I was going to get the lights on it but we’ll see how motivated I am. I’m pretty sure that the lights will go on it because a n unlit tree is a dark tree and I’m not a big fan of dark trees and I think that the looming mass of a the dark tree will cause me to get the job done. Also, the lit trees are a major part of my outdoor decorating scheme and I want my house to be the prettiest one on the street.

It’s going to be hard. This year there are several houses with lights up outside , they are using white lights, which still gets credit for being lights but not quite as celebratory as colored lights. On the upside, there are blinking lights, so yay for my street... I would like to think my yearly holiday extravaganza was a setting a good example for the rest of the neighborhood. By next year I’m hoping they will have all graduated to colored lights and air blown Santas or flocks of 48" penguins.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

I wondered what I would do if it got too windy outside for Penguins' safty. I would bring him inside so he could ride it out in the entry way. Posted by Picasa

I got a new Christmas mug today! Yay!

I had two I now have three, there is till time remaining before the holiday and there are a lot of dollar mugs out there! I want five Christmas mugs so I can spend the week before Christmas drinking my morning tea out of Christmas mugs.

I own my geekness.

With the holiday approaching, I am thinking I’m going to pull my tree out of the attic soon. I'm going to hope for sooner rather than later but it kind of depends – with the new job I’m more tired when I come home every day and I’m less wanting to drag a tree box down the stairs and then set up said tree.

There is a staff meeting today and if it lasts too long it’ll get dark and Dogger won’t get to go to the park and if that happens, I might have the free time to do things like dragging the tree box down the stairs. In theory I should be able to do that even if Dogger spent three hours at the park because all getting the tree box down entails is walking it out of the attic and dragging it down the stairs. It’s not rocket science or heavy lifting or a big investment of time.

But if I do bring it down I will also have to bring everything down and I’m not sure I am ready for everything. Its one thing to shop for Christmas it is another thing all together to decorate for Christmas and I love to decorate. I just don’t love to start decorating. It’s also still to warm, or it was too warm, it is now at least at night suitably cool enough for such things but I just haven’t felt like starting. I do think I need to get more lights up outside and so that is a concern and once I start really looking for the lights, I’m going to run across other things and the next thing you know… It just seems like an awful lot of work when I’m thinking about it, its fun once I start but before I start I don’t want to think about it.

What else?

What I should really do this evening is bath Dogger. Its s toss up, the muss and bother of Dogger bathing or two hours of Bones. I really like Bones, which I could watch with Dogger and get in some nice quality time with her, and I really so do not like the whole process of Dogger bathing, time which falls into “quantity time” verses “quality time”.

She smells though and I like that even less. If I was smart I would just bath her as I walk in the door after the meeting. I would strip her bedding, throw her outside to do her thing and get the tub ready for her. That would be the smart thing. Just do it and get it over with, like ripping a band aid off. Do it, get it over with and move on. (edited to add - Whoops. You know? they invented "pre-moistened dog bathing cloths" for nothing you know...)

But. Bathing Dogger also means doing the attendant laundry of her towels and bedding and vacuuming her room and just doing all this work. This time of year Dagger also needs to be blow dried in addition to being toweled off and I always have to remember to brush her teeth too.

Thank gawd she’s not a long haired dog, it would be even worse, she doesn’t even have that much fur but what there is of it, needs TLC in the winter time, poor little furry dry skinned baby.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Grass green, Sky blue

President Bush's policy in Iraq "is not working," the Iraq Study
Group said in releasing its long-awaited report.


To quote Alert Reader Tony, "Duh".
Up, Up and Away

This weekend before I put the lights up it occurred to me that the lights were going to have to go up. As in not down or above the ground. I thought about dragging out one of the dining room chairs but they really aren’t tall enough and standing on your tip toes on a kitchen chair trying to put Christmas lights up can lead to starring in your neighbors submission to America’s Funniest Home Videos, I mean, I’ve gone through the kitchen chair phase and frankly, I’ve grown out of it.

I’d now like to think of myself in my ladder phase. It would be a lot easier to be in my ladder phase if I actually had a ladder.

I’ve had access to a ladder but that isn’t the same as having your own ladder. When you have to borrow a ladder it cuts way down on your opportunities for ladder spontaneity. You can’t just say Hmmm. You know what? I think I want to change the bulb in the hallway. Having to arrange for a ladder makes a little thing like changing a bulb into a major project. First you have to call ahead and schedule time with the ladder, then you have to go and fetch the ladder then you actually do the task and then doing the whole thing in reveres. For a four minute job! Just to make the whole thing worth it you have to find more things to do above the ground. You find yourself dusting the tops of the doors - have you ever spent any time studying the tops of your door ways? It’s not a pretty place, you wouldn’t go out of your way to add it to the house tour Oh, and on the way to the office, check out the top of the doorway to the bathroom! Isn’t it awesome! I designed myself!. You just don’t do that besides, if you find yourself having to justify the ladders’ presents in your home you may find your self dealing with errant spider webs and other tasks best left undone.

There are things in your home you can’t see with out assistance. It’s best left that way.


I decided I didn’t want to go borrow a ladder. I was going to have to buy my own ladder. Sadly, this is not the kind of thing you go find on Ebay. You kind of have to go to the store yourself when you are in the ladder market. I did what I knew.

I called Broskey and Alphagal and asked them how much ladders cost. They gave me some figures, I asked some questions and I lit out for the closest big box home improvement store and tried to find the ladder isle.

Did you know they don’t sell wooden ladders anymore? I was shocked. I thought I would walk in there, grab the cutest ladder in the window and head home I was kind of hoping for a “Hello Kitty” model... I had to go find a clerk and then I had to compare and contrast. Ladders . 4' v. 6' , laddery looking ladders v. ladders that look like stairs v. ladders with handy places to put you big gulp and sandwich. There are a lot of options. It was very confusing. I just came in there for a generic ladder and found myself needing assistance and even more shocking, finding it. The clerk and I stood there in the middle of the ladder isle discussing the pros's and con’s of individual options. The prices were all about the same, so it wasn’t a matter of settling. It was a matter of deeply, deeply over thinking the problem! And for once it wasn’t on my part. I don’t know enough about ladders to over think them - The clerk on the other hand needed medication and perhaps some short term inpatient care.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

All the leaves…

My plan for this weekend was to do as little as possible. It was supposed to be cold and nasty all weekend as an incentive from above to stay inside and watch movies and maybe bake dog cookies and do the laundry and perhaps, maybe, get the Christmas decorations out. If I got around to it. I wasn’t going to put the lights up outside because it was supposed to be raining and miserable. There were no plans for world domination on my to-do list.

I did sleep in on Saturday. It was supposed to be raining and miserable, so sleeping in was not the waste of time it would have been were it supposed to be pretty. It's hard sleeping in on a sunny day, you have to put so much effort into it, it's almost like working

It was nicer than it was forcast to be but I still slept late - I am nothing if not a hard worker. Kitty wanted me up some what earlier but I have mastered the art of Kitty feeding while half asleep. I can get up to deal with him twice before I am too awake to stay asleep. The third time he gets put in his crate, just to get even with him I’ll stay in bed for a long time just to torment him. I’m mean but I learned from the master. He has no one to blame but himself.

I know the song goes “All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray”, but in my world the song goes more like “All the leaves are gone and the sky is grey”. My tree is empty and now, thanks to Broskeys leaf blower, my yard is clean. My yard, the shrubs, my driveway, the patio. It’s all quite pretty now and leaf free. If I could aim the blower at it, it is clean. I love the blower, Santa could bring me one for Christmas, that would be nice.

The lesson I learned from leaf blowing is that it is really more like Leaf herding. You can direct them but you can only suggest the leaves go in a certain direction but you can’t really make the leafs go where you want it to. I blew the leaves to the curb but a lot of them stopped along the way to kibitz. The blower doesn’t totally do away with raking all together, but it allows you to rake less and more efficiently. I like that.

While I was allegedly doing nothing over the weekend, after the raking and leaf blowing,I put part one of my Christmas lights up – I say part one because it still looks a little bare to me and I’m sure I had more out last year. I was just too lazy to really crack open as many boxes as I needed to. The other lights are there some where; I just wasn’t feeling like working to get them. It was part of my “as little as possible” plan. I did put up my penguin. He looks great. I think my penguin is a male. He didn’t come with a name and in real life the only way to sex a penguin is through surgery. So. I am going to be sexist and go with male as a default.

I’m going to have to not forget about penguin while he’s out there. I don’t think that the wind is going to be friendly to him. I zapped him a few times on accident while I was leaf blowing and he seemed to stand up to that pretty well, but it was really short, hard gusts of wind – I don’t think it was a good way to guess how he would really do under normal high wind circumstances. I need to be mindful of him. I wonder if my new boss would be understanding if I told her I needed to go home to tend to my penguin?

Monday, December 4, 2006


Bush administration to be cartoon

Bush administration to be cartoon to be? , you mean it isn't now?
Old News by now...

President Bush has accepted the resignation of U.N. Ambassador John Bolton when his recess appointment expires, The Associated Press reports.
Yesterday Pt. 2

Before I went into work I took Dogger for a walk. I didn’t need to be at the office until 8am, practically in the middle of the afternoon for me and so I had a lot of free time before I needed to leave for the day. I took Dogger out and she kept looking at me Do you know what time it is? Do you have any idea what time of day it is? This isn’t walky time, this is sleepy time. I want to go back to sleep. Why are you still here? Go to work!. It was kind of weird, it was 7am and I was walking my dog when I was usually sitting down at my desk. It felt kind of freeing.

The day before my first day on the new job, on the last day on the old job, I gathered up my things and took them down the hall. I spent some time taking all my pictures down and gathered up all my stuff and neatly boxed them up. The first day of the new job I took my things out of my boxes and put them back up. The old job required tape for this, the new job, thumb tacks. For five and a half years I had no use for thumb tacks. The only thumb tacks in my life were the ones on an unused cork board leaning on the wall outside my door. Suddenly, I am was about thumb tacks.

Having arranged all my stuff, I took my seat at my new desk. And I sat there and sat there. The phone rang a couple of times but when I answered it there wasn’t anyone there. The new job comes with a different phone from the old job. It has a lot more buttons. I learned to stay away from the phone. Eventually, 60 percent of my time is going to be spent on that phone, I hope someone tells me how to use it.

Still sitting there. I tried to log on to the computer but it wouldn’t let me log on under my name and then it told me that I needed to call IT if I wanted to go forward. So I sat there and felt my blood pressure creep up. My new supervisor finally came in and we got to training.

We sat down and she started to explain everything and pretty soon I was totally over loaded and I discovered that just because we worked with the same programs, we spoke to those programs in different ways. This is very scary for me. I knew we spoke different dialects but it seemed like we weren’t even speaking same language and there are all these things to learn and I spent several hours watching my supervisor do all these tasks and learning the tasks and the first time I tried to do something, I couldn’t do it. I hate the first day.

You know what would be great? If you could just walk into a new job and be able to do right off the bat. You know, just hit the ground running. That would be great.

The good thing was that due to all the training, the day flew by. The IT person changed out the computer on the new desk with my old computer and by 3:30 I was able to check my email. It was the first time I exhaled all day. I could delete my spam. I was at home.

Sunday, December 3, 2006


Saturday, December 2, 2006

Whoops! HAPPY SATURDAY !!!!!

Friday, December 1, 2006

Friday Cat Blogging

The new job starts today and I don't know if I am going to be able to post later

I’m sitting here thinking that this is the last day that it’s going to be business as usual. I hadn’t thought about that before, that today is my last day on autopilot and after today I won’t be able to just be. I’m going to have to learn new things again. I’m probably going to have to change my lunch schedule , which I will tell the powers that be, that I have no problem with that at all, but in real life, I have problems with that. I’ve eaten lunch at the same time for five and a half years. 11:30-12:30. Like clock work. I don’t know how they handle lunch “down there”, do they eat at the same time everyday or does it depend?

It’s also my last day of sitting in my office. It’s cold, it’s isolated, it’s kind of sad, but its mine! I have a whole room to myself and I have windows! True, the window are covered up by 5' cabinets and for the most part what I see out the little bit of windows that are not covered up is parking lot, still. Mine, my parking lot.

When I drive up to the building I can look at it and see my office. It’s not going to be mine anymore. I’m going from office to cubical, true, it is a large cube and it does have a very lovely window that looks out over our very lovely front yard… so it’s hardly slumming. I’ll survive. I’ve had to pack up all my stuff – it came to quite a lot of stuff, after all five and a half years later, you gather a lot of junk. I found oput what happened to all the free stuff I've picked up at all those health fairs and United Way thingys - it's been sitting in my desk drawer mating. Those free pencils are just like wire hangers, leve them in a dark place for a while. turn your back on them and they multiply. I also had to go through my list of "favorites" and cut and paste them and then mail them to myself - If I do end up loseing my computer, I don't want to loose as well. The IT person told me she thought I would keep my computer, but that was a while ago. I really want to keep my computer.

I also wonder about my hours. I should have spoken to someone about this before now, but I get to work at roughly, 7am. I am of course not exactly working at that hour, but I am in the office. I did finally go ask my new supervisor and she said I didn’t need to be there until eight. 8am! I’m going to be able to do, probably going to have to do my morning surfing from home. On dial up! Waaaaaaah.

My Gawd, not arriving at work until 8am? That’s practically in the middle of the afternoon! It also means I’m going to have to stay past my usual 4:30 pm. I need to leave at 4:30 because Dogger needs to get some exercise before it gets dark. It gets dark at 5:30pm and with traffic I won't get home until twenty after five and then it's all ready dark! and it gets earlier every day. I wonder if I tell my new supervisor that I live in a “marginal” neighborhood and I have to leave no later than 4:30pm because, you know, I have to take my dog for a walk? Think she’ll understand?

Me – Yeah. I’m sorry. 8-5 doesn’t work for me. I need to work 7:30-4:30.
NB- Okay, why?
Me - Great! Because I have issues and I don’t handle change well at all. I’m fine as long as my routine is not messed with, Mess with though, and dayum, I really have issues. Did I tell you that in the interview?
NB- You said you thrive on change.
Me – I lied. Oh, and by the way? I need to leave for lunch no later than 11:30, ‘kay?

I’ll survive.

I could if I had to, walk Dogger in the ayum. I’ll have the time, and a morning walk might be good for both of us. I think the downtown traffic is an issue later in the morning though, at 6:45 when I’m out most mornings, I am the traffic. But, it is just Raleigh downtown traffic. I think I’ll survive.

The filing has been light today but I’ve still been running around like a crazy person – here a subpoena, there a request, everywhere someone wanting something now! after I'm gone who is going to do all that stuff?

I need to calm down.

I need to be happy. I need to breathe. I’ll survive and so will the office.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Meth production for Dummies

A handy DIY tip sheet brought to you by the Department of Justice .

I didn’t go to the funeral. I could have, others in the office did. I am a giant weenie and I didn’t go. I went to one child’s funeral years ago and I pretty much decided that I really didn’t want to go to any others. Ever. Thus far it has been an easy to keep to that. Thank God.

I decided to rationalize not going by telling myself that part of my wanting to go was the fact that I have never been inside of a Mosque and I wanted to see one. I told myself that this was a very shallow and not totally respectful reason and it would be wrong to satisfy my curiosity at a child's' funeral. It seemed like it would be bad karma for me in the long run. It's also a big giant rationalization and I was a big chicken. I barely got through picking out the card, I didn’t think I could make it through the actual funeral.

Instead I spent my lunch hour at Poverty Barn buying bubble wrap to cushion the plastic tubs in the boxes they will be mailed in. Poverty Barn sells bubble wrap, if you’re interested. It’s not the heavy duty kind but I think it will be suitable for the job. The boxes I found at Sam’s Club turned out to be a leetle too long, not by much but enough that the tubs will need a little help sitting still during transit. I’m also going to utilize newspaper to further stabilize them.

That’s a lot of effort to make sure the cookies don’t get crushed through the mail. I mean, it’s just dog treats. But damn it they are going to arrive in the same pristine state they left in.

What else.

Did everyone watch the Charlie Brown Christmas show? I missed the Halloween one and I think I missed it last year too. I try to get the Christmas one at least because it’s so sweet and I love the soundtrack.

I’m in the middle of trying to get the temp up to speed on my job. I keep thinking that I have her at least slightly familiar with how to do the meat and potatoes part of the job when I think of something else I need to tell her. There is a lot to tell her. I held this position for 5 and half years, there are ambulance chasers out there that I've developed a bit of shorthand with over the years and they are going to be in for a rude surprise when they discover another voice on the end of the phone. They are going to have to learn to be polite to a new flunky. I hope they don't take advantage of her.

The good thing about no longer working with the lawyers is that at least now if I have an accident I won’t have to stress over hiring one of the ambulance chasers if I need one. I thought about that every once in a while, you know; would it be a conflict of interest for me to hire some one that I worked as a vendor for? Would it be preserved as showing favoritism? Could I deal with them in the future without it raising eyebrows? would they expect more from me? I know its silly, but I was concerned about that. I work with an awful lot of lawyers, many of them pretty closely and that kind of thing was a concern to me.

But, starting Friday, I can feel free to be as litigious as I want. Guilt free I can hire any low life attorney in the city, I can have a slip and fall at Wallyworld and feel good about calling any one of a dozen skeezy personal injury lawyers I know and sue the bejeeses out of them. Yay!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


My McDonalds doesn’t have its tree up yet. I call it my McDonalds because they are learning my order and only put cheese on my burger about half the time and once they caught the error before I did. Yay. They also seem to recognize me, which is both nice and sad. Nice that they remember a customer, sad that I am in there enough they remember me. My other McDonalds, my dinner McDonalds (now only putting cheese on my food 3/4s of the time!) has their tree up, but it isn’t lit. My lunch hour Burger Yucky has a nice tree, I haven’t been to my dinner Burger Yucky so I can’t comment. I’m surprised though that all McDonalds don’t have the same time table for their Christmas decorating. How unborglike of them.

Way, way, way back in the day when I worked at Jack-in-the-Box, we had lights for our tree, and I don’t remember any corporate decorating issues, but there may have been and I was re-dating day old salads in the walk in when the memos were read. I can’t remember what we decorated our tree with, but it was lit.

The video store had a tree and I think we decorated it with video boxes - I have a memory of some movie featuring a monkey and Harvey Keital but I can’t really remember and but think we used it as the tree topper – the box was yellow and looked star-like to us. We were pathetic; it was what we did with our down time, which there was a lot of, so we were very good at being pathetic. We were not a successful video store.

I don’t remember if the movie theatre had a tree, and I should remember that because I would bet that I would have been the one to decorate it - it would have been a “concession” job not a “door” job and most likely it would have been a “girl” job - I could clean the ladies room but I didn’t have to put together the lobby standees or know anything about the popcorn popper .I’m thinking we didn’t have a tree, it would have been in the way too much of the time.

We of course have one in the office. Last year was the first year that I was not a part of decorating it, and now I’m wondering if we ever put one up at all… It’s fun the first time, if you have the time to waste on it, and everyone offers to help, then no one will help – big with the comments and suggestions but no help whatsoever. I was glad I got out of the duty. I do not love decorating the tree. I enjoy doing my tree but the office tree is not my or my idea of fun, mostly because it also has to be taken down ( not a job I like doing at all, it doesn’t matter who has custody of the tree) and there is always drama about the lights, turning them on in the morning, turning them off after work. It all starts with getting the rights to plug in the extension cord and goes down hill from there. Stupid time wasting garbage. My lasting contribution to the office tree is its very lovely tree skirt. I made it, or really, Alphagal made it and I watched – but I was there.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

World Peace Puppy

More of this baby here
Planned Parenthood Celebrates World AIDS Day with Free HIV Testing on December 1st!

More than forty million people are living with HIV throughout the world - and that number increases in every region every day. Planned Parenthood Health Systems will offer free confidential HIV testing services on Friday, December 1, 2006 in honor of World AIDS Day.

Planned Parenthood

We got some bad news regarding one of the women who works in my office. While the rest of us were coming down from a long weekend they were dealing with the death of a son.

It’s very sad and very sudden and another argument never letting your children near a gun. Never. There are no reasons for children to have access to a gun, ever. “But…” NO, you say “What about…” NO , Yeah, but..., NO. None whatsoever. No child “needs” a gun and now one child who had a gun has nothing and his family no longer has him.

Children don’t need to know how to handle a gun, they don’t need to know how to take care of a gun, and they don’t need to know how to use a gun. They don’t even need to know you have one and they most certainly do not need their own. Never, never, never, never. If your child does not have access to a gun they can not shoot themselves while they are cleaning it.

I went over lunch to go get the family a card. The email we got also suggested food prep too and I may do that – no pork though, which means my meat loaf is out – which is officially earmarked for Broskey and Alphagal but I think that death in the family trumps birth in the family when it comes to offerings of food. Moot point though, the loaf is porky.

Back to the card. I did not know the sympathy card industry has become so detail oriented; it’s been a while since I needed a sympathy card (Thank God) and I had a hard time finding a simple card expressing non-specific sympathy. There was “Sorry Your Grandma Died” cards, “Sorry your Grandmother Died” cards, “Sorry your Great Uncle Died” cards, "Sorry your Dad Died”, “Sorry your Father Died” and on and on. I also saw Sorry your Son Died but it was a little more reality based than I was prepared to deal with at the time and about enough to make me break down in the middle of the drug store and I didn’t want that. I also didn’t want to buy a cheap, drug store bought “Sorry Your Son Died” card, if you are going to be that specific about the loss, you should at least go to Hallmark.

In between the “Sorry your Blood Kin Died” cards were interspersed “Sorry Your Dog Died” cards. I love my pets as much as the next guy, but damn, it just didn’t seem appropriate to have a sympathy card marking the death of somebodies Gramma sharing space with a sympathy card marking the death of a Labradoodle. It’s just not right.

I think they needed to reorganize the section. I found it off putting and I have sent people sympathy cards for their pets.

Card over thought, bought, taken out to the car. I tried to address my card. I had the street address and her name but not the husbands. I went back to work after lunch and asked some one I thought would know and they did not.

Me – I was addressing the card and I didn’t have her husbands name. What is his name?
They – Um, Joe?
Me – What is Joe’s last name?
They – Um….And family?

I ended up deciding to just address it to “Sally Surveyor and Family”. I don’t like it that way though; it seems to disregard the husband’s loss. I would have preferred addressing it to either “Mr. and Mrs. Joe Blow” or “Ms. Sally Surveyor and Mr. Joe Blow”. I wish I didn’t have to address anything.

Monday, November 27, 2006

What I did over my Thanksgiving Vacation

1. Shopped - Did you know stores are open on Thanksgiving Day? Yes, yes they are!
2. Ate. - A Lot.
3. Watched Football - Go Cowboys!!
4. Ate - Some More
5. Shopped - Some More, did not buy a 48" penguin.
6. Shopped - Call me Santa!
7. Ate - All that shopping makes you hungry.
8. Between eating and shopping, I took some pictures
9. Shopped - Sales! Everything is on sale! I saw a 48" penguin, I needed the 48" penguin, I got the 48" penguin!. If you buy too much stuff for other people, it can make you bitter. Make the world a less bitter place, buy the penguin.

True, the penguin might initially scare Dogger, but GLOBAL WARMING!! She might as well learn to live with my fake one before the real ones move in next door.

Thursday, November 23, 2006


(don't explode!!)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

But just for everyone else... right?

Weather might cause problems for mid-Atlantic travelers
Then and Now


On Nov. 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated while riding in a motorcade in Dallas. Suspected gunman Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested. Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn in as the 36th president of the United States.


On Nov. 22, 2006, It's a sort of no-man's land, and no one's in charge out here. We keep a watch on each other," said Bob Goodman, who sells assassination-related newspapers at Dealey Plaza. "There are certain unwritten rules, and there's a sort of self-policing."
Hot and Cold

While I was shopping for the sweater, I started to wonder why we don’t do clothing drives for the homeless and needy over the summer months. Don’t they get hot too? When I see them over the summer they are always swathed with coats and sweaters and sleeping bags – ya know, because it’s not as though they have an extra closet to store them away in or access to under bed storage. They are their storage units. But. Which leads me to, why don’t we ever see suitcases- for-the-homeless- drives? We pledge blankets and winter coats so that these poor people don’t freeze to death but what about the resultant storage needs? Give a man a fish v. Give a man a fishing pole …

Doesn’t anyone ever think of them in August? It’s hot and the homeless are wandering around looking like extras from Gorky Park. Why, doesn’t anyone want to get them shorts and tee-shirts? Why don’t we have plastic palm trees set up the vestibules at churches with pleas to purchase sunglasses or flip flips for the disadvantaged?

I mean if they can’t get coats and sweaters on their own where are they supposed to get shorts and tee shirts? Do warm weather clothes drop from the sky while cold weather clothing must be formally requested? I don’t understand. Why isn’t anyone doing a bathing suit drive in July? It gets cold and all of a sudden we care about them? Why don’t we care about them when its warm and the spend the summer dressed like Eskimos?

At most public pools, they won’t let you swim in a snow suit. Some places won’t even let you swim in a tee shirt. How are the homeless supposed to cool down? If we ran into them at the pool are we worried we would have to talk to them? Are we afraid they would sneak home in our tote bags along with our sunscreen? Winter clothes make them more bulky and less likely to sneak home tucked away in our handbags?

“The homeless are all around us”. Yes, but the rest of the year we pretend they’re not there. We feel guiltier about them freezing to death than we do about the chances of them dieing from heat stroke?

I just thought about this the other day after I was looking for the sweater. I’ve never gone out looking for a pair of shorts or a tee shirt for the needy, but every year I’m off looking for inexpensive winter coats and other cold weather outerware, who supplies warm weather clothing and if there is a supplier out there, why don’t they also supply coats and gloves?

What is it about cold weather that makes us want to help our fellow man? I know I don’t feel the same push to help during the summer months that I do the first time I have to pull on a jacket - I’m cold! Somewhere out there someone else is cold! I must get them a coat!. In August when I want to die from the heat, I do not automatically think I’m Hot! Somewhere out there someone else is hot! I must get them a pair of shorts! . I mean, screw you if you die from exposure during the summer months, but in the cold weather you must be attended to immediately? Do we think that Gawd cares more about us when we are cold than when we are hot?

I guess I’m thinking about this because it got cold here all of a sudden. I woke up and it was cold. I went out over lunch, still cold, now raining - to buy packing tape – the dollar store didn’t have any! It’s not like this is a time of year that nobody uses packing tape. Whatever.

I was driving back to work (the grocery store had packing tape, I paid too much for it.) and I saw the guy that lives along Western Blvd. I see him a lot. He’s mean. Anyway, I saw him wrapped in a blanket, shouting threatening things at passers by at the sandwich shop he was leaning against and I thought Oh, that poor man! It’s so cold. But, I see him all summer shouting threatening things at passers by and I don’t think Oh, that poor man it’s so hot!. Why is he more sympathetic now? He’s scary during the summer months too and I don’t want to get him a tee shirt.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Listening in

Over heard at the dog park the other day "What was I supposed to do? I didn't say I was sorry because I wasn't going to apologize to her, it's not my dogs fault her dog looks like a squirrel...

Robert Altman, director of "M-A-S-H," "Nashville" and "The Player," has died, according to his production company, The Associated Press reports.
Don't forget the cranberries in the refrigerator!

Cranberries, the forgotten health food
Sweater Weather

How was your morning? I started off by stepping on a dead rat. I knew it was a rat, I was taking Dogger out for her morning pee and I felt myself step on something and I thought that maybe it was a frozen turd and then I said to myself “It’s a dead rat. You stepped on a rat. You are going to have to dispose of dead rat before you leave for work”. I decided maybe I had stepped on a piece of wood.

On Doggers second trip out to pee it was light enough that I was able to tell for sure that what I had stepped on was not a frozen turd or a piece of wood. It was a rat. A dead rat but thankfully, not long dead rat. I’m so good at this now I just bagged it up like bagging up dog bomb – it makes it easier for some reason. In my mind picking up a dead rat is more gross than picking up a dog bomb. I do the same action and use the same tools and they end up the same place. It’s still gross though, it is not the start of the day you want. On the upside though, it was kind enough to die on the sidewalk and not in the grass. It is much grosser to pick up dead rat from the grass. There is disengagement involved with grass pick ups. This is something you want over fast. A scoop and run approach is the best outcome. The more time you spend on the dead rat the more time you have to think about what you’re doing. I am very close to a dead rat. I am touching a dead rat. There is a dead rat in my plastic bag covered hand rat. I am carrying a dead rat… .

And anytime you can get your dead rat issues taken care of while it is still early in the circle of life, the better. You really don’t want to have to go all CSI – Dead Rat at 6:20 in the morning.

My dead rat issues far behind me, I really wanted to go to Chick-Fil-A for lunch today. I mean, big time. But I couldn’t remember if they saw the light and started to take plastic or not and I didn’t have the cash handy to buy my lunch there if they hadn’t. I couldn’t risk it as the only other food at that shopping center is the worst Chinese restaurant on the planet. Really a Gawd awful place and I could have eaten the hour at Tuesday Morning, I really, really wanted to eat and not in a time waste kind of way.

I thought about it and I also needed to get gas in the car. That meant Sam’s Club. It also meant I could look again for the XL men’s sweater that I needed. I know that Sam’s Club is the same as Wallyworld, but they usually have better clothes at Sam’s. Isn’t that sad? You can get better clothes at a warehouse store than a Wallyworld. True, the clothes may smell like tires, but, hey, they are nice clothes that smell like tires.

I found my XL men’s sweater! It’s very nice. A little more than I had wanted to spend, but still cheap enough I can spring for long johns. I always go to a long johns place because I am always cold and I assume that other people must be as least as cold as I am, to be cold natured is to suffer in silence while the rest of the world opens the windows without asking. I’m too cheap to fully heat my house but other people can’t heat their homes fully because they can’t afford to. Mr. XL sweater is homeless or lives in shelter. I think he wants to be warmer.

I got good news today. I no longer have to keep an activity log! 15 weeks later and I am off the hook! And all I had to do was quit my job! If I had only known 14 weeks ago...

Monday, November 20, 2006

Back To Work?

How was your weekend? Didja get much done? I got everything done.

I did the laundry, raked the yard, packed for the holiday, made 10 dozen dog cookies, put the laundry away, planned my wardrobe for the week, went to the Wake County Book sale ( went overboard), went to church, watched The Davinci Code, and went to the Raleigh Christmas Parade ( 24 bands with attendant drill teams/flag corps/cheerleaders, 39 floats, 3 jump rope teams, eight community groups, multiple ROTCs, three balloons and four horses) . A major improvement over last years as they cut way, way down on the number of little girls dance clubs/cheer leader schools that had to stop the flow to perform for us.


Well, that was on Saturday. On Sunday I slept in.

I didn’t want to do too much on Sunday. I needed tor est up, so I decided to take things easier. I thought that I could go get some of the pictures I took at the fair printed out and while I was in the neighborhood, I could go to Wallyworld and get my gift for the giving tree at the church.

This year I checked the tree early, while there was still a good selection. I looked at a lot of them. It’s really sad, a lot of people need a lot of things - most of which most of us wouldn’t even think of needing. We may want a new winter coat, but we all ready have one. It’s a matter of upgrading what we have. If we don’t get a new coat, we’re still warm. We also don’t think about sweaters or deodorant or any of the thousands of other things that people out there need. I ended up getting a tag for Adult Male Extra Large Sweater. I was glad this was the one that came off in my hands. I was worried it would be one like “Toy Train” or “Doll Baby” . Not because these would be hard or too expensive, but from the stand point of a chronic over planner, there are just too many variations on a theme out there.

I can handle a sweater for an adult male, XL.

So. While I waited on my pictures I went to Wallyworld. I also needed dog toothpaste for Dogger sop I thought I would kill two birds with one stone. I would be in and out of there.


The doggy toothpaste was easy. A fairly off the beaten path thing. You can’t buy doggy toothpaste everywhere. But Wallyworld stocks doggy toothpaste

Then I went to where I thought men's sweaters would live. I was wrong. I found many other XL men's things. None of which was on my list. I went to Wallyworld in the first place because I thought that I would get the sweater and then maybe look at thermal long johns or maybe a long sleeved shirt. It all rode on the sweater. It has to be a fairly cheap sweater in order to leave room for the extras. The extras I found no problem.

Did you know that Wallyworld didn’t stock men’s sweaters? None . In November they had no men’s sweaters. They had heavy duty overalls, they had flannel shirts thicker than mattresses, they had sweat shirts piled to the sky. No sweaters.


It’s frickin’ November!

I went home and made 10 dozen more dog cookies. I also posted pictures from the parade.

Here are some I didn’t :

Sunday, November 19, 2006


Saturday, November 18, 2006


Friday, November 17, 2006

Friday Cat Blogging

Guess what?

You’re saying “Why the picture of flying pigs? Did something good happen and I missed it?”, Well, Nancy Pelosi is the new speaker of the house, I think that is a pretty important thing and she’s the first female speaker of the house, that’s kinda a Pigs Flying moment, yes?

But it’s not the reason those pigs are flying.

Those pigs are flying because, drum roll please....









And the crowd goes wild

Yes, I finally had enough. 14 weeks of Daily Activity Logs, five years of stressing over filing. I’m done. I’m finished with it. I am ready for a change and I loathe change. I will and have put up with untold nonsense in the name of the status quo.

It’s a change but its not a huge change. It’s even in the same building. Totally different set of duties and people and boss - the very best change of all. I am out from under The Boss.

The Boss isn’t through with me yet though. I dutifully alerted my supervisor - she hugged me. That went well. We talked about my official last day, I learned that as an employee of state government I do not have to give notice. I can just leave. I did not know that. I also did not do that. I do have to stay in the building after all. It would not be cool to burn bridges I might have to still use from time to time. My supervisor and I went back and forth, she is going on vacation followed by some medical leave. I suggested I should wait until after she gets back, a total of closer to four weeks than the traditional time. She said no.

She said that was stupid, give my two weeks and be done with it. I said, that I could live with that. We looked at the calender and got the date. She said I needed to write an official notice. I said I could do that.

I did that. I also had to write a formal acceptance of New Job. I did that too.


I went back to my regularly scheduled duties. But I was happy.

Time passed I went to lunch, I came back. I went back to work. Still happy.

My supervisor came in. She was not happy.

As part of her duties, she dutifully called The Boss and told her I had accepted the new position and she told her the date that she and I and New Boss had agreed on. The Boss was not happy about this ( she is out of the office), she was quite ugly about it, she went into Worst Case scenario territory about the health of a co-worker and what would happen if Supervisor was out of town, I was in a different position and certain co-worker were to die. Yes, Die . The co-worker has some health issues, but co-worker is not dying. .

So. What I didn’t know was that New Boss had all ready told The Boss and the Bosses Boss that she was going to offer me the position. The Boss knew and still showed her ass. She could have just spoke to New Boss about it and suggested that she make my start date, say, after X-Date. You know, as a professional courtesy.

Instead she wanted me to give what would amount to a months notice! I’m a frickin’ file clerk! Don Rumsfeld didn’t give a months notice.


I want to be a team player. I said I could wait until after supervisor came back, after New Boss got back from vacation... which takes us up to Christmas week. Ridiculous, yes, but I was willing to do it. I’m easy, I don’t like change. Big Boss, New Boss, Supervisor and I met and talked it out. We decided to meet later.

But. I spoke to Supervisor and she gave me some advice: Screw The Boss. Give my two weeks and be done with it. I don’t have to give any notice.

The Big Boss, New Boss, Supervisor and I met later. I said my first day of the new job will be December 1.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Looking around

Our second tornado watch of the morning! Earlier we misinterpreted the sirens ( three blasts of six seconds or six blasts of three seconds?) and thought it was a warning - which would have meant dropping everything and standing around in the hallway. This time we know its just a watch. We have been instructed to keep an eye out for a witch on a bike.

Well shit: A tornado kills at least five people in North Carolina, the Columbus County sheriff tells CNN affiliate WECT TV.
I write Letters

November 15, 2006

Dear Mayor,
(you spineless worm)

My name is Diana. I lived in Farmers Branch for over thirty years. I attended My Elementary School, My Junior High and My High School. I grew up there and have countless happy memories about the city and the people. It was a wonderful place to grow up. I miss living there. When I went away to college I always told people I was from Farmers Branch and then explained where it was, it would have been easier to just say I was from Dallas, but I always made the distinction. I was proud of my home town and where I was from.

( I had to explain every damn time I wrote a check. "No, There are no farms!, it's near Dallas, no I don't live in Dallas. Near Dallas, not Dallas. Okay, Dallas. Happy now?")

Eventuality, I had to leave the area and I settled in North Carolina – I don’t love it, it’s not home. It is however, growing on me. In the time since I moved here I searched online for news of Farmers Branch. I even joined a yahoo group because it was about Farmers Branch, and I read the DMN daily to keep up with the old home place.

It was there I learned what has become to my old school mate at My High School, Councilman REDACTED . Initially when I learned he had been elected to the city council I was very proud, I was thrilled to see “one of us” in such a position of authority. I was sad I couldn’t vote for him. Imagine my shock upon reading what he has been up to! I don’t remember him being a racist back at school, perhaps he was then too, he didn’t brag about it as he seems to now.

( I was shocked to see how this issue had been raised. Yes, immigration must be addressed and changes must be made on a federal level, it is in no way up to Farmers Branch to do this! I thought at first the Councilman in question was someone else. It wasn't.)

Not only has REDACTED become a bigot he is taking my town with him. The yahoo group was thrilled about his plan. I was horrified. I was a minority – a bad thing to be, it seems in Farmers Branch these days .It is not wise to be not like everyone else .I am very worried the direction the city is taking. What group will REDACTED and his followers pick on next? Who will be forced out the next time?

( You give those people and inch and they'll take a mile. I'm waiting for the first Klan March through town and who will be next on the hate parade? How about the homosexuals? or the Catholics? Who will be the next group they turn on? Hate is Hate.)

The rules that passed on Election Day spell a very sad end to my love affair with the City of Farmers Branch. It is one thing to stage a sober and reflective discussion about federal immigration reform and quite another to disenfranchise and entire class of people. Those rules are going to make Farmers Branch a very attractive place for the type of people who hate. I fear that Farmers branch will rid its borders of one group of “undesirables” only to replace them with another, a much more dangerous and threatening group, I see marches and speeches, offensive literature left around, new groups tabling at events.. I would say the racists are coming, but they are all ready there. When the Klan or any of the White Pride groups asks for a permit to march, what will Farmers Branch say? And what are they (you) going to do with the crowds that come out to cheer them on? And they will, because they can and because they have been made to feel very comfortable doing so.

( It's crap like this that lets everyone think that southerners and Texans in particular are all racist crackers. It is why we are portrayed as backward and stupid. Thanks REDACTED! you !@#$%)

This isn’t about citizenship, this is about racism. REDACTED started it, others will finish it and any reputation that Farmers Branch ever had as a nice place to live. Its reputation as a hateful, backward, redneck burg is spreading. I would not choose to raise children in a place like that.

I am boycotting Farmers Branch, I will do no business there or with any business that is there. I lived there for a long time and I have a lot of business there still. REDACTED and my 20th High school Reunion is coming up, be sure I will not be visiting/eating in/shopping in Farmers Branch while I am there. Thank God My High School is in Carrollton.

Rein in Councilman REDACTED before he ruins your city.

(Rein in, stifle, tape his damn mouth shut, anything, keep that idiot out of the press and consult a PR flack ASAP. The whole world is watching.)