Friday, April 30, 2010

reality sinks in

So tonight I had too much time on my hands. That's dangerous for me. It gets me thinking and turns me ambitious. And tonight that ambition came in the form of being a reality tv show cast member. In summer of 2005, I became hooked on "Big Brother." If you're not familiar with the show, get out there and live life. What do you do every Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday evening in the summers that could possibly be more important? I can't think of anything.

I don't think I'd win the show, but I'd like to participate any way. The show is based on manipulating people by creating alliances and stabbing people in the back. I'm too bad at keeping secrets to actually win the $500K the last player remaining receives. But I think I could at least compete. Maybe get sixth or seventh place, which I think is pretty respectable. A couple things have held me back from applying up to this point:

1. Bikinis: I'm not sure if they're required, but every girl I've seen on the show is always parading around in one. That would not bode well for me and my stretch marks.

2. Hyperhydrosis: I have sweaty hands, and their competitions regularly involve activities that would only work with dry hands: like hanging from ropes for six hours. But now I have weight gloves that I could pack a long with me. Major crisis averted.

3. Book ban: apparently the only book they're allowed to take along is the Bible. I wouldn't bring the Ultimate Handbook for Winning Big Brother by Season 11's own Jordan, I would just want an empty notebook I could scrawl my strategies away in, which, once discovered, would ultimately result in my eviction.

4. Limited menu: if you lose a food challenge, you spend the week allowed to eat nothing but some oatmeal mush concoction they call "slop." I guess this wouldn't be all bad as perhaps that would force me to lose my couple 25 remaining LBs. But then again, I would get evicted as soon as I was put on slop because my housemates wouldn't be able to stomach me any longer. I have lost friends before in those torturous hours between meals because I'm so irritable.

5. Money: If I don't win, is it all a waste? Or do contestants get paid regardless? Because I know Steve would never go for me taking a summer off work and not getting paid. That would make me not only poor, but also divorced.

But tonight, despite these five very good reasons to stay at home and laugh at other freaks who end up on the show, I thought, what the hell: I'm young(ish): I better apply now or else I'll be the token old crazy person that everyone makes fun of. So I went to The deadline was last Friday. Eff. Let's chalk it up to another summer wasting away watching normal people freaks (with no lives other than waiting for open casting to be announced online) parading around in that primetime television house. Damn elitists. I bet they don't even have to pack weight gloves.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

must-see tv

What I do with my evenings consists of working out and watching tv. Usually simultaneously, but on days I'm feeling lazy, it's just me, a blanket, and a bag of PopSecret Homestyle (all other popcorn sucks in comparison). On days when I'm ambitious, I add blogging and reading to my agenda, but there's so much tv to watch, so little time. So those get pushed aside quite often.

I'm over American Idol. I've tired of it. The phrases and jokes are the same week after week (that ripe banana thing was just stupid: sorry Ellen, I love you otherwise). I was sick of hearing Randy say, "I don't know dawg, that didn't do it for me," or "a thousand percent yes." Plus, after mullet boy Alex Lambert got booted, I stuck true to my boycott promise. There are other shows I could be watching.

I've always been a fan of the Biggest Loser. Mostly because I work out while watching it, so it motivates me to sweat my ass off. And seriously, when Daris ran a 5K in 21 minutes flat yesterday, I realized how slow I run. Time to up my pace from the 6.6, I guess. But I have to admit, after however many seasons, some of it gets a little old, too. Like those stupid built-in commercials they do for Ziploc, Brita, and Designer Whey. If Bob wants to pull you aside ladies, it's not to schedule a one-on-one workout in your hometown (I heard he's gay but didn't believe it). He just wants to tell you that a great way to add fiber to your diet is by eating 3/4 cup of Fiber One cereal each morning.

My guilty pleasure is The City. Oh my gosh, I love that show. I wish that was the two hour show instead of Biggest Loser. I don't think Whitney's clothing line is up to par with the other fashion shown at Bryant Park. I mean, c'mon. Those of us who want to watch real designers have Project Runway for that. Show more of what goes on at Elle. It seems like all they do at People's Revolution is roll their eyes. I just loved the drama between Olivia and Erin, but it looks like they're going to squash that this season. Just because they're tired of it doesn't mean I am! So for drama, I added The Hills to my DVR list last night. Heidi's face honestly scared me. OK, so you had a terrible music video that got ten million hits on youtube for all the wrong reasons. That doesn't mean you need to butcher yourself to become unrecognizable.

The only show that isn't reality that I absolutely will never miss is Cougar Town. It takes a couple episodes to really get rolling, but once it does, it is absolutely hilarious. The day Season one comes out on DVD I'm taking the day off work and laughing myself into a coma. You should too. Hell, come over, we'll make a day of it. Courtney Cox's body is amazing. If I looked half that good or even weighed twice as much as she does at her age, I'd die peacefully. But let's not turn this into fantasy, after all, this was all about reality up until that point.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

In a word, yes. She does

Does my biological mother cry sometimes? - Steven Schmidt

In a word, yes. She does.

As long as her heart continues to beat, a day won't pass that she doesn't think of you. And think of what you think. And wonder and hope and dream for you. That's what mothers do. Whether or not they live there with you. Being adopted doesn't mean you were never loved by your biological mother; sometimes it means she loved you so much that she gave you better parents.

Her blue eyes capture the distance.
- Sonya Cheuse

She has your lips and nose.
My eyes and hair.
But she doesn't know us.

She stares at me in astonishment
from a black and white photo
I pirated from her dad's Facebook page.

Astonished I would do such a thing.
-April 26, 2010

Monday, April 26, 2010

Stories told in just six words

I've been participating in Six Word Saturday for a few weeks now. It was born after Cate read "Not Quite What I was planning" which is a collection of six-word memoirs inspired by Ernest Hemingway's now notorious six-word story, "For sale: baby shoes, never worn." So of course I had to buy the book. I logged onto one of my many favorite websites, and bought it for the plane ride to Phoenix I anticipated being invited on but wasn't. In six words, I'll refer to that as: "Bought reading material. Trip canceled. Expensed." Here are a few of the gems I've uncovered so far:

I still make coffee for two. - Zak Nelson

Never should have bought that ring. - Paul Bellows

Recent doctorate means overeducated and underemployed. - Philip Sternberg

Bad brakes discovered at high speed. - Paul Schultz

Followed rules, not dreams. Never again. - Margaret Hellerstein

I recognize red flags faster, now. - Kristen Grimm

Found true love, married someone else. - Bjorn Stromberg

Oklahoma girl meets world. Regrets it. -Gretchen Wahl

And then, just I was really enjoying this book and loving the flip of each new page, I ran across this one:

Blogging is easy. Writing is hard. - Jennifer Shreve

Damn. Ain't that the truth? F***.
Added the obscenity to equal six.
Loosen up, straight-laced. All have vices.
Don't know how to count hyphen.
Also don't give a f***. Oops.
S***, said "f***". F***, said "s***".

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Starting over, yet again

Goodbye may seem forever
Farewell is like the end
But in my heart is a memory
And there you'll always be
-old lady singing on "Fox and the Hound"

Today was my last day with my employer part deux. It all felt a little like déjà vu this morning, well wishing over baked goods and promising to coordinate get-togethers that may or may not ever happen. And just like last time, it was emotional for me to say goodbye to a company I love so much. Until here, I've never had a job I loved. And it made me question if I made the right choice. After all, I wasn't forced out, this was completely voluntary.

The last two jobs I left, I felt as if I had just been released from prison (not that I have first hand knowledge, but this is what's left of my imagination). Once out of the parking lot, I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders: I was finally free. But with this one, I had to choke back tears at the gas station, as stupid as it sounds. I wanted to call my boss and say, "OK, screw the NFL draft, I'm going to come in tomorrow and work one last day." But I didn't. Instead, I returned home where Steve was waiting for me and my looming emotional breakdown.

He reminded me why we decided this in the first place. That we want the same things in life. And that it all starts with me getting a grown-up, stable, permanent job with benefits. And he told me I would go to my new job on Monday and I would love it. So I ripped my now contraband badge off and gave him a forced smile. And I'm choosing to believe him. Just like a break up, there is no quicker way to get over this past relationship than by diving into a new one. And I will do just that. I will give as much effort to this new job as I gave my last one. I will become just as deeply invested and devoted to this company as I was the last. And once again, I will prove myself. And this time, maybe it will all pay off.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

camp, college, work

Today, I was sitting in a meeting and a colleague walked in and turned air to perfume. She wore whatever it is my camp counselor wore 13 years ago. And suddenly, I couldn't focus on global transformation or centers of excellence, but could only think about tubing down a river that wasn't deep enough and scraping my ass on rocks. I thought about eating three meals a day corralled through the kitchen, and playing catch with eggs. And to think I paid $200 for that.

I loved camp. I would save every dollar I earned babysitting so I could spend a week away from my family with strangers. I would play gutterball for hours and piss off the guys because I was better than them. Then, if they wanted more, I'd school them in Foosball, too. I would eat seconds at every meal and buy candy every afternoon. Camp was a smorgasbord I never wanted to end. I dreaded that Saturday morning when my mom would come pick me up in that embarrassing maroon boat of ours. I would trade addresses with my cabin-mates and later write them letters on my personalized stationary I bought from the Current catalog.

I remember being excited for college. I told my aunt I would love college because it would be like camp that lasted all school year long. She said it kind of was, but it entailed something called studying, as well. I didn't bother too much with the studying part, so college was great. Not just a week, but entire semesters at a time away from my family and thinking I was living on my own. Ah, the innocence of youth.

I do enjoy working, it suits me. I need to occupy my time with something other than my own thoughts. But sometimes I think of working somewhere that would feel like playing. Working at a camp or a college in a Neverland of sorts. Where although I grew old, without the wrinkles, no one could tell. Where I wouldn't have to be tactful or diplomatic, but could be myself and never worry about losing my job over it. Childish dreams never die with me, they just recycle. I'm perpetually battling adulthood.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Piece be with you

You're looking at my dinner. I came home from a long day of work, a little stressed and worn out and unwilling to starve during the ten hours it seems to take our rice cooker to prepare some minute rice. These things are delicious - they actually taste like Almond joys, even though they're the size of M&Ms. But then, once I ate all I could, I felt like a 12-year-old on Halloween night. I had to take a nap on the couch.

I told Steve to wake me once he finished mowing the lawn no matter what. No matter if it meant putting on a hockey mask and a full suit of armor, because I'm a bit nasty to anyone who disturbs my slumber. I had some dream about sleeping though my much needed work out and woke up to see Steve standing near me, accruing the gumption it requires to wake me.

So we went on our nightly three mile walk. And then I did another three miles on the treadmill. I am so motivated these days. Nothing like weighing twenty-five extra pounds to motivate someone who still remembers what it felt like to be fit. And now I feel fine again. Maybe even up for what's left of those Almond Joy pieces.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

the real deterrent is me

This afternoon, my husband stumbled in from last night's bachelor party, his sunglasses on. I immediately demanded he take them off so I could see what he was covering up. I was expecting a black eye, but it was just his eyes squinted nearly shut. He regaled me with stories of their drunken PG-13 shenanigans. And then he asked about my quiet G-rated ones (PG if you include my swearing). He fell asleep in my arms and I kissed his skin that smelled of rum.

You would think that he's the reason we haven't had kids yet. He misses boys' night out, while I much prefer a girl's night in. He drinks and occassionally smokes and gambles while I read and put together jigsaw puzzles. My life is that of an 80-year-old, his an 18-year old. But despite our hobbies, the real deterrent is me.

A couple days ago, we were on our daily walk and there was the slightest change in him. Maybe it was the twinkle in his eye or the way he enunciated his Rs, but something was different. He was more tender. The way he talked about our future, I knew the moment had come. He is ready to be a dad.

I'm afraid of what the next step will bring. Afraid because I'm not sure that my feeble patience can bear the weight of motherhood. I fear postpartum depression. I can't imagine choosing between quitting my job and sending my child to daycare - neither one sounding worse or better: just equally evil. The choices and responsibilities of motherhood seem so far beyond my maturity level, and I'm not prepared to deal with them. I am always second-guessing my willingness to become a mom just yet. Perhaps I live too much in my head. I am always talking myself out of what I think I want.

I want peace.

That elusive prize
I will never obtain

because I won't
allow it to myself.

I've always lived
within the walls
of self-deprivation.

Anorexia of the soul.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

baby big boys

Attempted murder: nature vs. tomato plants

Last weekend I bought two tomato plants. Now that I have a house, I feel I should try to grow something. When I was a kid, I had a garden. Each of us did. Chad grew corn, I grew carrots and tomatoes, and Amber grew zucchinis. Chad hoed, I pulled weeds, and Amber made pies in the mud. And somehow, all of our plants grew into food we one day ate and gave to people at church who really didn't want zucchinis.

So I figure if I could do it as a ten-year-old child, I should certainly be able to grow things now. But I've moved to the middle of America where it's always winter or summer rather than in Puyallup where the soil was always moist, the rain always poured, and the temperature was never too hot or too cold. My dog could have grown the same juicy tomatoes then that I did.

I am horrible with plants. I forget to water them or remember and am too lazy. Steve knows I can't grow anything except leg hair, yet he still watches me buy flowers and plants at Lowe's and doesn't say anything about how I'm wasting our money and we'll be pulling these dead plants out of the ground in three weeks.

This morning, while he was reading the newspaper, Steve told me about how temperatures would hit freezing the next two nights and if I wanted to save my baby tomato plants, I would need to cover them. I certainly hope he's not testing me with this to see what kind of mother I'll be. But if he is, I think everyone can see why we have yet to reproduce.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

6A & 24 DEF

I talk like a bitch in private, but when it comes right down to it, I don't intentionally go around pissing people off. It's not my nature. I don't start conflict purposefully. OK, I do flip people off and yell out my window at line cutters on Harrison, but that's only because I know I can out-speed them if it comes right down to it. I've never been in a fight (almost once - thanks Marie!) I'm definitely no peacemaker, but I don't see a point in starting shit, either.

So I was pretty annoyed when a stranger at the airport tried to start shit with me. There were these three "tweens" I guess they're called now - girls somewhere between the ages of 10-15. They were kicking and pinching each other, one flailing into me. On the terminal, they were screeching and screaming. I have low tolerance for the high octaves, so I stated to my friend Tracey, "tell me we weren't like that at that age."

The middle-aged woman in front of me whips around and said, "are you talking about those girls back there?" as if it wasn't already completely obvious. I'm talking about the ones that make me wish I was deaf. And that's saying a lot considering how much I love listening to Rihanna's "Take a Bow." I gave her my signature, isn't it obvious, stupid? look and said, "of course."

"Those are my kids, thanks a lot," she snipped, bitchiness oozing from her every pore. Then she whipped back around to staring at the head in front of her as if nothing had happened. Obviously she couldn't stand them either since she was nowhere near them in line. And when we found our seats on the plane, I noticed she sat near the front, and they sat all the way in the back. And suddenly, I no longer felt annoyed by the girls - after all, they're just kids. I felt bad for them: that they had to live with someone who didn't care enough for them to discipline them or even be in their presence. I understood why they were acting out. And all of a sudden, genetics seemed like the most cruel joke.

Monday, April 12, 2010

globes and maps

Last week, I took a half day. I took a half day so I could attend an interview, which I'll tell you more about later. Have I ever told you how much I love half days? Oh yes, I have. Of course I have. I am a rerun. But half days are perfect. You get paid something, and you don't feel lazy. And really, mornings are meant to spend working, it's the afternoons that you want free. So on this half day of mine, I decided to go buy something.

I love buying things. It doesn't matter what it is, who it's for, it just matters that our checking account decreases. And being that my weight is a bit higher than it should be, I decided to nix clothes (OK, I bought some blousy tops, but who is keeping track? Quit interrogating me!) I decided to buy some things for the house.

Honestly, I'm a terrible decorator. Absolutely horrible. I buy things that are reds or greens or browns and hope they go together. They don't, but luckily, Steve and I are both equally ignorant in the decorating department. We sit in our mismatched house thinking it looks good and no one tells us differently. I can sometimes tell by the looks on people's faces when they swing by for a visit, but I have bad eyes, so those looks could have been anything, really.

In case you haven't been reading this blog for longer than six seconds, Steve likes to drink. As a result, there are always condensation rings all over my brown tables. So years later, I finally bought some coasters. The coasters came with a very lovely fortune cookie looking scrap of paper, stating that if you bought these coasters, you had good taste.

Apparently these coasters are unaware of which home they got adopted into. Perhaps they're as blind as me. But that's alright, I'll take the compliment from this mass manufactured piece of paper that goes to all sorts of people with horrible taste and I'll believe it. That's what faith is, after all. I didn't stop with the coasters. I bought a centerpiece. Have I ever told you about my globe obsession? I haven't? Wow - I guess not everything I say is a rerun (until tomorrow when I talk about this again).

Well I'm obsessed with globes and maps and most things educational. No, I'm not good at geography. In fact, I'm horrible at it. Until last month, I thought Malaria was a country (although you probably did too when you just read it - anything capitalized that ends with an "a" looks like a country). So I fill my house with globes and maps and hope that somehow the information on them seeps into my brain when I walk past them. And even if it doesn't, I think they look cool. But please, don't take my decorating advice, as I've mentioned earlier - unless you're blind and then it doesn't matter, do whatever you want. Hell, marry some ugly guy with a goiter too if he's rich and your fingers never actually touch said goiter.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Get the door, it's a salesman!

I'm the woman of the house

Whenever the doorbell rings, I get excited as if it's going to be my friends coming over to play. I should move on. As an adult, the only people who ring the doorbell are moochers who want something from you. But I still answer the door. I'm nostalgic and apparently a bit slow, OK?

Anyway, this afternoon, two post-teens but still not grown-ups were on my porch. They asked, "is the woman of the house home?" Alright, so in their defense, I had just spent a couple hours cleaning the house and patching grass, so I was a bit made down from my normal hottness. But still, did they think I was a high schooler? Even if they thought I was a student who came and visited her parents on the weekend, I would be a student with not only my Bachelor's degree, but also my Master's and even my PhD completed. I'd be working on whatever comes after that (now I'm wishing I had spent all these years in school doing something with my life - oh well, I wouldn't have used them in the workplace anyway).

So I responded tartly, "I am the woman of the house. I own this home," just in case the first statement wasn't clear enough. I aim to intimidate, since they looked about my age and I'm guessing based on the way they reacted to me that they still live with their parents. Then they sputtered the way the would have originally had I been made up in my normal hottness.

Friday, April 9, 2010

archived want list

I found an old blog post stashed away in a notebook full of things I wrote once upon a time. I'm into that kind of thing - trips down memory lane, that is. This was back when my blog was on my myspace, if that says anything. This was before I was married, when I lived by myself in my tiny apartment and didn't have the internet, so I probably wrote this at the library. This is all I wanted then:

* * *

Monday, January 16, 2006

this is all i want

to have a house i love that i am perpetually fixing up or buying stuff for with a yard and a garden.
to wake up everyday and get to do whatever i want.
to write a few books.
to teach a college creative writing class.
to have enough money to be comfortable.
to buy a motor home and travel around america one summer.
to travel to a few places (see wake up every day and do whatever i want).
to love and be loved.
to change some people's lives for the better.
to find out how old that kid working at arby's is (he's got to be ten).
to have lunch with larry david.
to watch my daughter grow into a beautiful woman.
to have a very passionate everyday.
to have a tv that takes up my entire entertainment center.
to be a mentor (maybe not now...maybe when i'm more mature...)
to have my writing mean something to other people.
to have some great boots.
and a lot of great jeans.
those are important.
why do i keep writing with periods?
i'm an english major.
i know better.
still doing it.
to do my own hair.
to make people laugh.
to have friends who i'll do anything for and will do anything for me.
to wake up everyday happy.
to go to bed every night without regrets.
to finish writing this blog before my lunch hour.

* * *

(OK, apparently this wasn't written at the library, but rather at work when I was at TMA - the one good thing about a job that doesn't keep you busy).

I see I did get a few of these checked off already - the house, the tv, the good jeans and boots: the monetary ones that became possible once I was married and saw the benefits of not living paycheck to paycheck. But there are others that I'm still working towards. And always will be.

And now, my list has changed to include Steve. I'd like to take him scuba diving, go on a cruise, watch him freak out when I attempt to skydive. But this list reminded me that I'm getting there. Life is slowly taking me in the direction I hoped, but I've still got to find out a way to wake up everyday and get to do whatever I want.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

taylor sucks, taylor sucks!

Do you think these lyrics are similar? A sloppy, perhaps homely high school girl who wants a guy who is out of her league and already has a much better woman:

Girl Next Door, performed by Saving Jane (and Julie Roberts, if any of you know who that is)

Small town homecoming queen
She's the star in this scene
There's no way to deny she's lovely
Perfect skin
Perfect hair
Perfumed hearts everywhere
Tell myself that inside she's ugly
Maybe I'm just jealous
I can't help but hate her
Secretly I wonder if my boyfriend wants to date her

She's the prom queen
I'm in the marching band
She's a cheerleader
I'm sittin' in the stands
She gets the top bunk
I'm sleepin' on the floor
She's Miss America and I'm just the girl next door

Senior class president
She must be heaven sent
She was never the last one standing
A backseat debutant
Everything that you want
Never too harsh or too demanding
Maybe I'll admit it
I'm a little bitter
Everybody loves her but I just wanna hit her

She's the prom queen
I'm in the marching band
She's a cheerleader
I'm sittin' in the stands
She gets the top bunk
I'm sleepin' on the floor
She's Miss America and
I'm just the girl next door
Oh... I'm just the girl next door

I don't know why I'm feelin' sorry for myself myself myself
I spend all my time wishin' that I was someone else

She's the prom queen
I'm in the marching band
She's a cheerleader
I'm sittin in the stands
I get a little bit
she gets a little more
She's Miss America...She's Miss America
I'm just the girl next door...oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh
I'm just the girl
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
i'm just the girl next door

* * *
You Belong with Me by Taylor Swift

You're on the phone with your girlfriend, She's upset
She's going off about something that you said
She doesn't get your humor like I do

I'm in the room, its a typical Tuesday night
I'm listening to the kind of music she doesn't like
And she'll never know your story like I do

But she wears short skirts, I wear t-shirts
She's cheer captain and I'm on the bleachers
Dreaming bout the day when you wake up and find
That what you're lookin' for has been here the whole time

If you could see that I'm the one who understands you
Been here all along so why can't you see?
You belong with me
You belong with me

Walkin' the streets with you in your worn out jeans
I cant help thinking this is how it ought to be
Laughing on the park bench thinkin' to myself
Hey isn't this easy?

And you've got a smile that could light up this whole town
I haven't seen it in awhile, since she brought you down
You say you find I know you better than that
Hey, Whatcha doing with a girl like that?

She wears high heels, I wear sneakers
She's cheer captain and I'm on the bleachers
Dreaming bout the day when you wake up and find
That what you're looking for has been here the whole time

If you could see that I'm the one who understands you
Been here all along so why can't you see?
You belong with me

Standin' by, waiting at your back door
All this time how could you not know that?
You belong with me
You belong with me

Oh I remember you driving to my house in the middle of the night
I'm the one who makes you laugh when you know you're about to cry
I know your favorite songs and you tell me about your dreams
I think I know where you belong. I think I know it's with me.

Can't you see that I'm the one who understands you?
Been here all along so why can't you see?
You belong with me

Standing by or waiting at your back door
All this time how could you not know that
You belong with me
You belong with me

Have you ever thought just maybe
You belong with me
You belong with me

* * *

OK, so the lyrics aren't exactly the same, the first one is much more concise and emotional, but this is reason #54 that I hate Taylor Swift (reasons #1-#53 include her horrible live performances, the fact that she's overrated, her immature lyrics that somehow win awards, her voice that makes me want to scratch my ears off, etc.) Why is she popular? Music is all a matter of taste and I know there's really no point arguing against Taylor Swift on here because I'm sure all of my readers love her. Everyone in the world loves her. Except me and Kanye. I love you, Kanye.

Don't bother leaving me comments about how you disagree with me, because frankly, I don't care. I will just delete them, because after all, this is my platform, and what good is having your own blog if you can't bitch and moan about things you hate every now and then? I know you all disagree with me, but I just want to get it off my chest: Taylor sucks. And every time I hear her on the radio, I nearly sprain my wrist trying to switch the station before she sings her first note. She is the antithesis of Pink for me.

P.S. Another rip off: the movie coming out "Death at a Funeral" - am I the only one that saw the one that just came out a couple years ago? Why are they remaking it already? It looks the exact same.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

winner, deceit, hating cats

First things first: a winner has been hand picked from Saturday's giveaway. Literally, hand picked. I put some names in a bowl and had Steve draw one once he walked in the door tonight. So you all know this is completely fair and unbiased (but who knows, maybe I made some slips of paper bigger than others). Yes, I did want to make sure a loyal reader won, but I know that all I have is loyal readers. And people that accidentally stumble across by blog by googling something insane like "epilepsy blog." Thank you to my loyal readers, you make me want to type a new post day after every other day and hope for comments.

Steve likes to pretend he has nothing to do with my blog, but I'm outting him here. He is the first to read my every post and gives me comments the old-fashioned way, to my face, much to my dismay. I try to urge him to post something online but he much prefers to seem aloof and like he just don't care. Men. Anyway, my very involved silent blog partner has chosen the winner to be Mrs. Van Gilder. Send me over your contact info and I will get your prize shipped off. Woo hoo! And here's hoping I get a raise and am able to do many more giveaways in the future.

Second things second: two quick animal anecdotes. One which you'll believe, one which you won't. First off, I know every pet owner thinks their pet is smart (and I would like to forcefully disagree in most of these cases, but people are pretty sensitive about that, apparently). Well my dog is beyond smart: he's cunning and deceitful. (For those of you who have not yet evolved your above average smarts into that direction, that's where you're going should you choose to be profitable. The evil world of counting cards, creating pyramid schemes and other tricks that only geniuses can pull off).

Because that's how they did it when he was a kid, Steve has adamantly demanded Tucker receive a treat every time he poops outside. I think it's a bit excessive, but hey: I'm also against dogs licking our plates, so what do I know. Any way, ever since we moved into this house and Tucker has free range of our fenced back yard and is no longer tethered to a leash, I give him treats based on instinct. If he seemed to be out there a long time and comes in extremely hyper, I give it to him. What the hell. He lives for these. So I did so today at four. At five, he was following me around as if he had to crap. So I let him out again. And watched him. And saw him crap. And then he came in, looking at me for a treat. What a treacherous little bitch (and yes, I know that "bitch" is a bit of a harsh term to use about an innocent little animal, but obviously my dog is and I know strong words pack a stronger punch. And if you're offended like some member of PETA, you best stop reading now as this next story will cause you some extreme psychological damage).

2b in our index of animal anecdotes: this is a true story told to me second hand today from an extremely reliable source. You will not believe it unless you've seen "Donnie Darko," so I aim to enlighten everyone all the true cruelties of the world. A man we'll call "Tom" had a stray enter his garage and bite him. Since this cat was not his own, just a mangy creature roaming the earth for the mere reason of biting people, Tom picked up the cat by the neck with one hand and punched it with his free hand. He broke the cat's neck and killed it instantly. Then, rather than polluting his own trash can, he threw the cat in the back of his truck bed, crossed state lines, and disposed of it in the dumpster outside his work. Sick. Now I hate cats more than the average person, so I wasn't all too horrified, but definitely taken aback. Anything that has that affect on me is worth sharing.

And that reminds me of a calendar I had as a child cat-hater that my sister coveted. It's called "I hate cats" by Skip Morrow and has all sorts of ways to torture them (but in cartoon - so it's completely funny and not disturbing at all). I will share a few of those w/you in closing. Oh, and I do love animals. Well, one at least. My tricky little bastard of a dog.

(yeah - as if cats can do tricks)

Saturday, April 3, 2010


It's about time for a giveaway

In the four days I was away, Spring sprung at my house. I returned to a (mostly) green lawn and my buds blossomed. Remember a couple weeks ago when I asked if anyone knew what these were?

Well, they turned into these:

Whoever you are, Anonymous, that identified them, reveal yourself and I will send you some daffodils. Which brings me to thinking about giveaways. All major bloggers do giveaways. Now I know I'm not a major blogger by any means, but regardless, it's been over a year of blogging and I haven't given anything away. Nothing. Not even a piece of lint or a flake of dead skin. How selfish of me.

So today I'm going to offer something easy to mail and pretty impersonal since I don't know who will win it. I'm going to offer a gift card. And where would all of my readers enjoy a gift card to? That I'm not sure, but what everyone has in common is reading. I know there are a lot of fans of those giant "Fox Books" type stores (reference to "You've Got Mail" - if you haven't seen it, Netflix it immediately), but I much prefer used book stores. All these books that get bought for $25 and read once end up abandoned. So I do my part to adopt them. And if I happen to find a picture in one of them like I just did with this: all the better.

So here's how to win a gift card to Half Price Books: comment below before 6pm CST Monday, April 5, 2010 and then hope that I just happen to pick your name at random. So you don't have a whole lot of control in this process, but your comment will at least make you a candidate. Send your friends over to my site, give me some traffic for one day. They don't have to return and keep reading, but I'd like my sitemeter to get up to 5,000 at some point before I die. I have no bones about giving something to an unloyal reader. Or maybe I do. I guess we'll see the results of the completely at random drawing and decide for ourselves. If you absolutely abhor books and finding bizarre "treasures" inside those used ones, comment anyway. Maybe we can work something out on the back end in the off chance that you actually win.

Friday, April 2, 2010

miss independent

I consider myself independent. My entire childhood and adolescence was spent around the same people and as a result, I was forced to remain the same person. So when college time came around, I decided to attend one in another state. My mother told me, "this is your chance to start fresh and turn into anyone you want to be," (obviously because she wasn't a fan of my current personality). This was a chance to get away from my family reputation and to be myself, not Grant's daughter. So I moved to Omaha, Nebraska.

After completing college, I got an apartment all to myself. During college I had had various roommates which had pushed me towards living alone. I felt that alone was the only time I could truly be myself. Otherwise, I was always being prodded into a personality similar to the one I lived with. I went out and bought furniture and made my tiny little space my own. And then, when the bills came, I got a second job so I wouldn't have to ask anyone for money. At night, I read books and wrote in my journals. It was quiet, but it was me. I came to peace with the thought of my life ending up this way.

I had never been a girl who dreamed of her wedding day or being a mom. My dreams were to be a teacher and a writer. My dreams didn't include anyone except myself. The night Steve proposed to me, I remember being a bit taken aback. Not because I didn't love him, but because I hadn't thought too hard of putting that into my plans. I was OK with being a "me." But I loved him and said, "yes" and then turned into a "we."

Over the last few years, I've seen layers of my independence peel away or flake off. Having Steve around, I don't need my old "figure it out yourself" survival attitude - he's a useful resource with anything from opening a jar to help with working the DVR. And the other night, when I was lying in my hotel bed alone, I felt like half of my was missing. Like without Steve, I'm not myself.

I had laid in bed alone so many nights before and that was me. But now, I felt alone, not independent. I realized I have changed a bit. Like I found who I really was and comfortably settled into it. Maybe I just thought I was independent before, but that was only because I didn't know what it felt like to be able to depend on someone. Steve has changed me and made me believe in people and give them second chances. And I've realized that my life is much more enjoyable with him to share it with.