Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Shelly Is Neither Desperate Nor Serious

Some time ago, our buddy Irb talked about the dangers of connecting with old friends and classmates via Facebook, with the point being, Lets Face It, If You Were In Total Agreement With These People, You Wouldn't Have To RE-Connect, You Would Have Never Really Lost Touch.
His point of discovery came in a discussion over the issue of gay marriage with some former classmates of his (found on Facebook!) who completely disagreed with his feelings on the matter.  Pretty soon, everybody was quoting scripture, and it all sort of deteriorated from there.
(By the way, Irb, congratulations on being the #1 ranking website on Google for the phrase "ann coulter's gaping anus of a mouth".  You deserve it!)
I thought of Irb last night when I found myself dinging around on Facebook for much, much too long.  OhMyGod, the people I found!!!  Old roommates from college, former co-workers, some guy I used to have a crush on--the list goes on and on.  And, because I thought of Irb, I stopped myself from sending any of them messages or asking any of them to be my "friends".
I'm sure they are all lovely people.
I'm sure of it.
They all look healthy and happy and have lives and jobs and children and all the trappings of 40-something 'success'.  Good for them.
I don't care.
I mean, I CARE, but, I don't sit up nights wondering about the girl with whom I used to share an apartment, for whom my most striking memory is the time that she insisted on getting really, really drunk, then insisted, against the sage advice of several people in the room, that she MUST try marijuana because she never had before...and she spent the rest of the night and the entire next day resting peacefully on the floor of our bathroom, in between pukes.
Gosh, that memory is so precious...why ruin it with something new and awkward?
She was such a nice, Christian girl.  By the time we parted ways, she smoked cigarettes, drank fairly heavily, had tried marijuana and had lost her virginity.  Gee...when you look at it that way, it would appear that I was a bad influence.  But don't blame me...I am many things, but I'm no pusher.  I was just there to take notes on the complete collapse of her delicate moral structure.
And then there was the sweet co-worker who, one night in the early 80's when I was working on the air, walked into the studio holding two Hostess cupcakes, each with a lit candle blazing on top of it, because it was my birthday.  Only I think I was in the middle of talking about something else at the time, live mic in the room, etc., etc., so, I wasn't able to acknowledge her right away.  In fact, I didn't shut the mic off until the candles had burned down a fair amount and the flames were in danger of starting the frosting on fire and had actually started to burn her hand, if memory serves.  (For those of you who think that it would be impossible for frosting to catch on fire, have you ever checked the ingredients of Hostess cupcake frosting?  I'm just sayin'.)
We referred to it, ever after, as the Flaming Ding-Dong Incident.
She was also involved in a certain late-night raid on a competing radio station, so, she and I have been through a few hilarious things together.
I saw her "I'm In My 40's Now" picture on Facebook--a studio shot one might have taken at, say, a church, or, to put on your business card if you sell real estate or insurance or something.  I thought, well, that is definitely the same person, and I know she has always had that same smile, but why is it that 20 years later, I'm a little creeped out by it?  As in, I'm afraid that if I contact her, she might try to sell me some real estate or, some insurance, or, some church?
A former classmate of mine from high school contacted me recently, and, to give you some perspective, let me explain the situation regarding my primary and secondary education.  There were 16 of us.  16 people, sharing a classroom, in the same building, every year, from 1972 to 1984.  A couple of us moved, but most of us did not--a core group of us were never separated from each other, for the entire time we were in school.  So its not like, "Oh, I remember so-and-so--I think we had a class together", its like, these are the people I grew up with--those 15 other people are like family.  25 years later, I know what cities they all live in, I know if they are married, I know whether or not they have children.  I know when they, or anyone in their families have any major events happening in their lives--births, deaths, illnesses--Its all just a part of the daily roster when you grow up in a very, very small town.  We may never talk, but we never really lose touch--the experience of our childhoods has bonded us forever.
But now that we are older, and no longer spend time together, the fact that we have chosen different paths in life is glaringly evident.  Most of this group still live in small towns, and they have their families and kids in school or sports, just like I do, but, small towns have a certain, relaxed, speed.  I've never operated very well at that speed.  In a small town, Christianity, and "morally acceptable" behaviors based on the local interpretation of the doctrine, is assumed.  I'm a bit more of a free spirit. 
We're different. 
And, they are all lovely people--so lovely, in fact, that when they ask me about my life and I tell them a story from my life, much like the ones you would read here, they get a bit of a glazed over look in their eyes.  I think my life is pretty mellow, but certainly, it is sheer insanity compared to the calm predictability of theirs.  Let's face it--It is likely that none of them ever logged on to the family computer to discover that their stepson was posing for, and sending via internet, a bunch of pornographic pictures of himself, for example.  And I'm sure none of them go frog hunting in a dress and high heels, at night.  Also, if any of this stuff had happened to them, they would NEVER talk about it.  This is what makes us so different, despite our shared youth.  I'm all about exposing the depths of bad human behavior, and laughing about it, whenever possible.  They don't want to hear about it.
So when I see them there, on Facebook, they may be online talking about a cool thing they quilted or knitted or baked, or how their kid's hockey team went to State....
...and I'm online talking about my roommate losing her virginity in her failed effort to keep up with me.
Not that the stuff they talk about isn't nice, but....*yawn*
One of the most valuable things you can have, and hopefully you have a lot of them, is a kindred spirit--someone with whom you can share and compare notes.  Your friends.  Someone who, when you ask, "Am I crazy?" they calmly assure you that you are not.  The flow of these people in and out of our lives goes with the flow of our experiences.  Some of these relationships don't stay relationships.  Instead, they become a bit of your history, a thing of value, yes, but a place to which you can never return.  You change.  Hopefully, you change.  You might not have been able to imagine, 20 years ago, the things that make perfect sense to you today.  The reasons you ask, "Am I crazy?" change, based on your experiences, and the only people who can really answer that question for you are the people who are sharing your experiences, right now.
Its not that your former friends cannot be your friends now, its that the learning curve is a tough one.  The physics of time have left them, and you, in the dust in each other's lives.  Catching up--REALLY catching up, would take a lot of work, and both of you have to really, really want it.  Usually, one of you doesn't.  Usually, one of you looks at the other and thinks, "They seem a little crazy".  I know of several people that I knew in a former life who simply cannot stomach the information I post on this blog, because, well...."crazy".  And that is OK--no worries.  I wish them well, but, they have been replaced--replaced with wonderful people who (usually) don't think that.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

3 Random Things

  1. Just curious...what exactly is the "Surprise" in the city of Surprise, AZ?  Anyone?  Anyone?
     2.   Is there a more unfortunate first name than Kitty-Jo?  (the line of angry Kitty-Jo's is forming to the left...)  And if your name is, in fact, Kitty-Jo, is a Southern Accent assumed?  What about gum?  Can we assume that Kitty-Jo chews gum?  Loudly?  Will I go to hell for stereotyping these women?  Or get into any other kind of "trouble"?  I'm not sure if the White, Gum Poppin' Southern Women Named Kitty group has a lobby.
     3.   A co-worker, who sits within earshot of me, is talkin' church gossip right now.  Oh, the drama.  Stuff like, "So-and-so was very short with my on Sunday morning!" and, "The (Smith/Jones/Johnson/Anderson) family has LEFT THE CHURCH" apparently over some issue involving the choir!  Gasp! 
High octane stuff. 
Not nearly as entertaining, though, as the other lady who sits next to her, who, when speaking to customers, occasionally mutes her phone and says "Oh Jeeezuz-Laawd!  Why are you doing this to me???"  How can you not love that?

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Nuts And Bolts Of It

Terms like "irretrievable breakdown" never come to mind, do they? Not for those of us who don't normally speak in that way.

Makes you think.

I suppose that is the entire reason behind the use of those words in a divorce petition.

"Item Number 6: There has been an irretrievable breakdown of my marriage relationship with Respondent and the marriage cannot be saved."

It is heavy, to be sure, but lacks the dramatic flair of "I felt like I was dying..."

Why is it that they let you write your own marriage vows, but not your own divorce "vows"? We are such hypocrites. You get married and everybody is all about the bliss and the happiness. Your friends, family, and the nation all stand by their notion that it about the love and making babies and that somehow, some way, being in love and who you love is the only thing you need concern yourself with when you get married.

Perhaps, if everybody look at it in the cold starkness of the business and assets and legal partnership aspect of it, the way we look at divorce, then there wouldn't be such a freak-out over gay people getting married.

After all, marriage, legally, has nothing to do with love, or who you love. For proof of that, I offer up the 30-page legal document about my marriage that I am looking at right now. The word "love" is not mentioned, even once, in this divorce petition. I suppose I could write it somewhere in the Additional Comments section, but frankly, it seems out of place. In fact, if you look at this document, there is something quite striking about it: You're never asked "why"? It doesn't even allow for the insertion of an explanation after Item Number 6.

So, why is it that we can't write our own divorce "vows"? Why is getting married so damn easy (for heterosexuals) and divorce comes with an implied "Are you SURE you want to do this?" level of legalese that makes you realize, oh, by the way, that this is a SERIOUS legal contract you are trying to get out of. Why is it that the law wants you to think so hard about getting divorced, but not about getting married? Hardly anybody ever asks you if you're SURE you want to get married...and even if they do, what do we say? What do we ALL say? We say, "But I really, really love him/her." And for some reason, everyone is OK with that--you need say nothing more. Incredibly stupid.

What if we had to fill out 30 pages of cold, hard, financial information and have it notarized BEFORE we were allowed to marry? Wouldn't that make more sense? Because I'm filling out that information right now, and I must tell you that the fact that I can't actually tell you how much money my husband makes in a year has me a little weirded out--not because I give a shit how much money he makes in a year, but because I can't believe that, all of a sudden, its important to somebody. When we were getting married, nobody asked. Why not? If its so damn important that I know this, why was I not required to know this going in?

If its really about love, and who you love or why you love them, or what bonds you together, then why is there no place on this petition for divorce, this legal document, for me to list all of the stupid shit that happened to break that bond?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekend Fluff

Before I post the fluff, can I just say that the musical number at the Academy Awards with Beyonce and the High School Musical kids was just Gaawd-Freaking-Awful and Baz, WTF were you thinking??

OK, on with the fluff...

You Would Win Best Original Screenplay

You are insightful and expressive. You've always been a natural storyteller.

You know how to hook an audience, entertain them, and surprise them at the end.

Where people see everyday life, you see an engaging plot with interesting characters.

You notice details that other people ignore. People you've only met once or twice live inside your head.

Your Russian Name Is: Lilia Dimitra Ivanov


You Were a Praying Mantis

You have the still power of a legendary warrior.

You are able to manipulate time - or at least, the perception of it.

Anyone else remember that song, Praying Mantis? Who did that?

You Are Punk Music

You've thought long and hard about what mainstream society has to offer...

And you've pretty much decided that most normal things aren't for you.

You're creative, expressive, and likely to do things yourself.

You are a rebel and a fighter. You'll defend your point of view to anyone.

You Are Kidnapping

You love to be in control. You are incredibly dominant.

A part of you even likes to make people suffer. It's all about power!

You love to take risks, especially if the potential payoff is huge.

But you wouldn't be in crime only for the money. You're twisted enough to just enjoy screwing with people.

Duuuuuuuuuuuude! If only I had known I was incredibly dominant! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Concentrated Effort Not To Talk About My Spine...

Here are the follow-up articles to Uncertainty is Your Friend...

Part II


Part III

And here is a cool article by Travis Wright--Stop Making Failures of Your Children. ThankyouThankyouThankyou for writing that, Travis--once again, you rock!

Barrett Chase on the DTV conversion. Perfectly skewed, and right to the point, as usual.

And, if you are really bored after all of that, I updated my MySpace profile, so you can look at that if you want to. I don't get there too terribly often, but, hey, the music kicks ass this week...

Speaking of kick ass music, you can pretend I didn't say I TOLD YOU SO about the fact that Back Door Slam will no longer be operating as the trio we came to know. Who coulda predicted that? Oh, yeah, never mind....I did.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Can't You See I Don't Have None Left?

I can't remember what movie that was from, but the line just ahead of it was "I've been working my ass off..."
...Sadly, I DO have some left.  Isn't that the universal problem?  Too much ass?
Anyway...Oy!  What a week!
The worst part was, this was actually a SLOW week at work!  I just MADE it busy, like a dumb-ass, cuz I thought the slow time would  be a good time to add projects!  Do extra stuff!  More, more, more!
Then, about Wednesday, it became evident, physically, that I had been "forgetting" to eat and drink properly for, uh, a while.  This was due to the "busy".  Oops.  When I say "forgetting" to eat and drink properly, I'm talking about racing out of the house in the morning, with no time to make or take your lunch and while you're at work you have nothing but an apple and some popcorn, and you end up famished at a friends house at around 5PM, at which time you consumer four chocolate chips cookies and a Leinie.  (Thanks, Greg!  Cookies and Beer!  Its a new "thing".)  Then, you go home and now you're no longer hungry for dinner, and the beer and sugar has made you sleepy, so you zonk out on the couch, and once again, "forget" to put good food into your system.  The next day, something similar happens (though I only did the cookies and beer thing the ONE time, I swear) and before you know it, it has been a few days and you haven't eaten.  That's how these things happen...
For a normal person, the ill effects are slight--you feel a bit run down, then you eat an orange, drink some water and you're all good.  If you are like me and have a Chiari Malformation?   Hehe....DON'T EVER DO THAT because the second you start to get dehydrated, you start wishing you were dead.
How to describe the Chiari headache?  I don't think there is a way to describe it.  I hadn't had one in a long time, so, when I woke up feeling crappy on Thursday, I thought I was just getting the cold that my daughters had been living with for a few days.  Basic sinus crap, no big deal.  I was almost too busy to notice.  Around 1PM, I noticed the ringing in my ears, the blurry vision, my jaw hurting, my CHIN hurting (who's CHIN ever hurts?) and my right elbow, too.  Right elbow...that's a weird one.  Oh, and I had a fever.  Anyway, I realized what was happening.  Shit.  I dismissed myself for the day, went to my car and cranked the heat to the "sauna" setting because strangely, hot cars work wonders on these types of headaches.  By the time I got home I felt mostly normal, but it hit me like a ton of bricks again that evening.
'scuse me while I enjoy this rather large pain killer.
And six bottles of water.
And my electric blanket.
And my special pillows, set just so.
And a cafe latte with a shot of espresso....thankyewjeeeezuzforthecaffeine.
Funny thing about the wacky Chiari long as you can find a comfortable position and hold your head and neck perfectly still in that comfortable position (hence the pillows, set just so) you can sort of function, doing things that don't require you to get up and move around.  Why you would want to continue functioning is the big mystery.  Most people would NOT want to.  I, on the other hand, am weirdly driven to be constantly doing something.  I'm not a TV watching, couch sitting type.  Unfortunately, I did find myself propped up in front of a television, pillows just set just so.  So I started knitting a pair of socks.
Knitting socks.  That thing I used to do back in the olden days, when I was in pain every day, and stuck sitting still all the time.  Ah, yes, I remember it well...
Except, I don't actually "remember" this particular sock pattern as well as I thought I did and I think I might have accidentally brought my sock book back to the library by mistake when I was bringing back some other books.  Jeez.  How does one check on something like that?
We'll see how I do, pulling this one from memory.  If any of you have a copy of Socks, Socks, Socks, I'm talking about a pair of lace socks, and I think they are on page 40.  Shoot me the recipe if you think of it.
All of this leads to a super-exciting Saturday night in front of the television, watching Sybil and knitting socks.  Its the rock and roll life-style, people...
ANYWAY...I'm on a sort of forced relaxation thing for a while, which may mean lots more knitting and television and stuff.  I'll try to send the occasional report from the field.

Farewell, Fuzzy

My muse is on vacation this week. Instead of actual writing, here is a picture of the Clinton family cat, Socks, who died Friday at the age of 20, after battling...throat cancer???
(Click the pic for the story)
Just another reason to lay off the smoke. I'm just sayin'.
(Do you think he looks a little high in this picture?)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Just Because We Never Talk, It Doesn't Mean I Don't Love You

This is not going to be a post about how I never write anymore.
"Anymore".....seriously.  Its been a whole couple of days.  I'm not sure why I'm feeling so much guilt!  You probably didn't even notice I didn't feel like writing...
Its just another thing that I think about, waaaaay too much.  Not that I want to stop thinking about it...
There was some online chit-chat recently about What Motivates You and reaching your goals, and the author was a fan of sharing goals, meaning, for example, if you want to quit smoking, tell EVERYONE that you want to quit smoking, give them your "start date", and ask them to remind you, on those days when you could really use a cigarette, that you are quitting and that you can't have one.
I could not disagree with this more vehemently.
I mean...if I feel like quitting because I think it is time and I think I have reached the point in my life where I can handle it and maybe I don't want to smoke anymore, I have reached that conclusion not because I've had the surgeon generals warning knocked into my head 50 or 60 million times, but because, I just feel like it, and, its MY decision, not someone else's.  In fact, knowing myself the way I do, I can all but guarantee that the very FIRST time anyone "reminds" me that I am quitting, my reaction will be quite predictable:
I would say something like, "YOU can't tell ME what to do!  If I FEEL like it, I'm gonna do it!"  This statement would be followed by me either bumming a smoke from a co-worker or just going to the corner store to buy a pack.
Because I am stubborn like that.
By the way?  Not quitting.  Yet.
Goals are extremely personal things.  There are things that I want to do in my life that I haven't (and won't) share, even with my best friend.  I subscribe to the Keep Your Goals Away From The Trolls theory.  First, let me make it perfectly clear that I do not, in any way, consider my best friend a troll, its just that we are different people.    What she wants in life is not necessarily what I want for myself, so, she's not going to "get it" if one day I announce that I would like to, I dunno, quit my dumb job at the insurance company and apply for a job working for Mr. Grass.  Or, decide that I want to spend my life standing on the street corner selling umbrellas, but only on sunny days.  Whatever.  Barb's a more security-minded person than I am.  She'd say, "Why would you leave a perfectly good job?"  And she's not wrong--most people would feel the same. 
But, I'm not most people.  In most situations, I'm figuring, "What's the worst that could happen?"  or, "It sounds interesting and it probably won't kill me."
To have a well-meaning friend, who is just concerned about my safety and security could potentially be the worst "allie" you could have.  Its not that they don't love you--in fact, it may be BECAUSE they love you that they will be of no help to you whatsoever.
Nobody, especially your friends, want to see you going through something that is difficult and challenging.  My best friend, for example, was mute on the whole issue of my leaving my husband.  Yes, there were some things that were happening that she knew about that she understood to be bad, but, unlike others, she never, ever said, "You should leave.  Also, I never asked her "Should I leave?"  Not once.  She knew it would be difficult, not to mention emotionally and literally expensive, and she couldn't imagine going through it.  For my part, I knew that if I asked her, she'd tell me not to do it, so, I simply did not ask.  When I got to Minnesota, she gave me a hug and said she was glad to see me.  That was enough.
I "don't ask" a lot.  With all of my closest friends.  I may announce to them, "Oh, by the way, I'm doing (insert thing) now" but that's long after the decision-making process is over and there's not a damn thing they can do about it.  I find it better to apologize later than to ask permission now.
Sharing goals with your friends implies that you ARE asking their permission, and you are seeking their approval.  Well....sorry peeps...approval, I don't need.  Not from some other person, anyway, unless, they are an extremely FABULOUS  person and I am so dazzled by their very being that I'm flat-out copying them.  Wait.  Never mind.  Those people don't exist.
Anyway...I am working on a few things, my brain is engaged in something else, and I just wanted to say that just because I'm not talking to you doesn't mean I don't love you.  It means I don't RESPECT you.  Hahahahaha....just kidding.  Actually, it just means I'm working on a few things, and when they are done being worked on, I may share.  I'm fairly certain that I won't need to apologize.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Living In A Box

There were only three boxes left to unpack.

Speaking as someone who has lived with at least some of their possessions in cardboard boxes for an entire year, now, having only three boxes left to unpack was significant.

Three.  Just three.

The three boxes contained CD's, mostly, and there was a lot of "Oh Thank God I didn't leave this in Mobile" going on when I unpacked those boxes this evening.  Finding...Comfort Eagle, for example.  A girl needs her Cake.  We'll just tuck that in the purse for the commute tomorrow...

The record collections are usually among the most hotly contested things at the end of any relationship--they write whole scenes in movies about people coming to blows over who gets what.

When I packed, I did it knowing that I would not have the luxury of returning if I had forgotten anything.  It was a 1300 mile move, so whatever choices I made, those choices would have to be final.  Sure, I suppose I could ask the ex to mail me stuff, but, oh wait, never mind.  I am STILL waiting to get the title to the car to which I now own the loan.  Very, very convenient for him to hold the title to a car for which I am financially responsible.  Don't get me started.

I made all those packing and leaving choices during a week of the most extreme emotional upheaval of my life.  I knew it wasn't going to make any sense to me the next morning, but I never pictured myself standing in my kitchen six months later, wondering why I have two ice cream scoops but no colander.  Also?  I have an ice cream MAKER, but, didn't think to grab one of the 27 decent frying pans.

Thinking back on it now, I can't recall my criteria at packing time--what, besides space considerations, made me think, "No, HE should have this..."?  Because I know I did a lot of that--I examined things and decided if it was something to which he would have a stronger emotional attachment than me.  I actually DID that!

Of course, he had a big tag sale a month after I left, and sold all of the stuff I had agonized over.  I REALLY need to get over this notion that people think about things as much as I do.  Nooooobody thinks about things as much as I do.  Nobody.

For some reason, I packed only the really crappy cooking pans, too.  It would almost be worth the plane ticket to go raid my former kitchen.  I'm sure the title for the car is somewhere on that black hole known as Jim's Bedroom Dresser.

The three boxes are now unpacked.  I no longer live with cardboard.  This will take some getting used to.  I'd completely forgotten what it was like to have everything in its place.  I don't think everything has been in it's place for more than just a year--more like 9 years.  Perhaps this will take more getting used to than I thought.

Friday, February 13, 2009

100 Truths!

Just one of those Facebook thingies where you make up a bunch of stuff about yourself then torture other people with it...and why not?  Its Friday, and the wine is flowing.

100 Truths!

(For those of you forced to partake on Facebook, you have to tag 15 people and make them do it too!  Whooooo-Hoooooo!)

1. Last beverage→ Las Brisas
2. Last phone call→ Punky
3. Last text message→ Miss Sarah!
4. Last song you listened to:  Something by the Talking Heads that was on Pandora and I can't remember what it was called, but it fucking grooved...
5. Last time you cried→ Last night

1. Dated someone twice → I don't recall...
2. Been cheated on?→ Yep
3. Kissed someone & regretted it? Duh...
4. Lost someone special?→ Yes
5. Been depressed?→ Not really

1. Deep Red
2. Purple
3. Green
4. Butter Cream!!!!!!!!!!  :-)

1. Made new friends → Yep!
2. Fallen out of love → Yes
3. Laughed until you cried → ALL THE TIME!!
4. Met someone who changed you→ Yes.
5. Found out who your true friends were → You learn a little more of that every day
6. Found out someone was talking about you→ Yeah, just today, I actually over-heard them...nice.
7. Kissed anyone on your friend's list→ I don't think so! 
8. How many people on your friends list do you know in real life → All but one
9. How many kids do you want to have→ I already have some of those...
10. Do you have any pets → Two cats--Jack and Bailey.  Jack is completely fucking insane.  Bailey is a snob.
11. Do you want to change your name→ As it happens, I will be doing that soon.
12. What did you do for your last birthday→ I was living on the Gulf Coast at the time.  I think I spent some hours by the pool and perhaps drank some wine.
13. What time did you wake up today → 3:55.  Apparently there was some shit going on in the universe that I needed to be awake for.
14. What were you doing at midnight last night → Zzzzzzzz
15. Name something you CANNOT wait for → If I tell you, it will never happen
16. Last time you saw your father--> Last fall
17. What is one thing you wish you could change about your life → I'm actually changing a lot of things right now.  I'm sure there will be more.
18. What are you listening to right now →  Rudie Can't Fail!  I just love that somebody used the word "feckless" in a song.  Now if somebody could use the word "lascivious" in a song, my life would be complete.
19. Have you ever talked to a person named Tom → I know, come to think of it, I don't recall actually knowing anyone by that name.  Weird...
23. What's getting on your nerves right now? → My desktop is dragging it's ass tonight, and I think I better switch to the laptop.
24. Most visited webpage → GMAIL, for sure.  All day, every day.  HA!

1. What's your name→ Shelly Payne
2. Nicknames→ Actually, "Shelly" is a nickname
3. Relationship Status → I really suck at relationships.  Therefore, I am not in one.  Try to act surprised.
4. Zodiac sign→ Cancer
5. Male or female or transgendered→ Female
6. Elementary→ Aaah....the loverly small town in Western North Dakota that I won't be naming here, because this will be posted all over the place, not just Facebook.
7. Middle School → Middle School?  HA!  This town was so small, we had no such thing!!!
8. High school → I went to high school in the same building where I went to elementary school.  Oooooo.....aaaaaah...
10. Hair color → Changes all the time.  Blondish, usually, though I did just dye it brown in December.  Aaaaand, it will change yet again this weekend!  Yay!  Hair color!
11. Long or short → Short.  Wait!  Are we talking about my hair?
16. Height → 5'7"
17. Do you have a crush on someone? I can honestly say "no" to that...
18: What do you like about yourself? → I'm a damned humorous girl
19. Piercings → Ears
21. Righty or lefty → Righty

23. First piercing → My ears
26. First sport you joined → Basketball!  What else is there...?  hehe
24. First best friend → Diana R
27. First pet → Growing up, I had a few cats--Rusty, Rama, Sambo.  And we had a dog named Duchess.  And my mom had two dogs, Lucy and Dixie.
28. First vacation→ Vacation.....what is this "vacation" you speak of?
29. First concert → I believe that was Joan Jett.  Or...was it?  Jeeez...that was a billion years ago.  I'm a jillion years old, you know, don't ask me this stuff.
30. First crush → I had a crush on the local TV camera man for a while.  He's probably not cute anymore.

49. Eating → Just finished eating, now I am DRINKING, thank you.
50. Drinking → Las Brisas.  Its wine.  From Spain.  The happy folks at 44 France were nice enough to recommend it.
52. I'm about to → Plow through another 50 of these things.
53. Listening to → Mr. Jones, by Talking Heads.  Dancing around the living room.  Its all good.
55. Waiting for → Not a thing.

58. Want kids? Gosh, I sure hope so, since I have them already.
59. Want to get married? HA!  HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!  Oh, never would take too long to explain.
60. Careers in mind?  Something where it actually matters if I show up or not.  That is also my top criteria for a relationship, by the way...

68. Lips or eyes → Hmmm....I don't really know.  I guess I have never though of anyone having sexy lips.  Or eyes, really.  I think they should just have a good vibe about them.
69. Hugs or kisses → I like them both, sometimes simultaneously!
70. Shorter or taller → Shorter
71. Older or Younger → Doesn't matter
72. Romantic or spontaneous → Wait....isn't spontaneous considered romantic?
73. Nice stomach or nice arms → Jeeez...I have no idea...
74. Sensitive or loud → Both
75. Hook-up or relationship → relationship.  of some kind.  I dunno.
77. Trouble maker or hesitant→ What kind of trouble are we talking about here?  Something I would enjoy?

78. Kissed a stranger → Yes
79. Drank hard liquor → Perhaps...HA!
80. Lost glasses/contacts → I don't think so
81. Sex on first date --> Is that a "date" then?  Or just getting together for the purposes of sex?  Not that its a bad thing.... ;-)
82. Broken someone's heart → I'm not entirely sure
83. Had your own heart broken → All the time.
85. Been arrested → Oops!  Look at the time!
86. Turned someone down → Yes
87. Cried when someone died → Gee, I don't know anybody who does that...What the hell?
88. Liked a friend that is a girl? → You mean, had sexy feelings toward someone of the same sex?  No.  Sadly, I love men.  Those annoying, impossible, rat-bastards..

89. Yourself → Yes
90. Miracles → Absolutely
91. Love at first sight → Huh....well.....I'm not sure how to answer that.  I mean, I've looked at someone and immediately thought, "I WANT that person" but I don't think that I was actually capable of loving them until a long time had passed and I got over my heavy lust thing.  Heavy lust is a useful thing, though--wakes you right up!
92. Heaven → you really want to have this discussion?  Cuz, I have some theories.
93. Santa Claus →  *blink*  *blink*  What do you mean?
95. Kiss on the first date? → Depends
96. Angels → Absolutely

97. Is there one person you want to be with right now? → I'm not sure. 
98. Had more than one boyfriend/girlfriend at one time? → Not really.
100.........wait a minute?  WTF?  hehe....

OK, people, your turn!  You tortured me with the 25 things, did you expect me not to retaliate?


Yay!  Not us!  HA!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

More Sharing...

Marc, I totally needed this... you rock!


This is an interesting and timely article from our friends at Psychology Today (Cuz, Psychology Today is just the kind of geek pop-science I get into, and yes, I have been subscribing to that magazing for years...).  Click the title to link to the article on their site.

Uncertainty is Your Friend, Part I

A number of years ago the dean of a leading medical school opened the commencement ceremonies with a message to the newly graduated physicians, "Fifty percent of what we taught you is wrong. The trouble is, we don't know which fifty percent."

The uncertainty percentage is much greater in social sciences, due to the enormous number of variables that influence even a barely adequate analysis of complex phenomena. Almost everything I learned in graduate school about emotions is wrong. I can read certain things I wrote just six years ago and be amazed at how wrong they are, given new developments in technology that reveal so much more about how the brain works, along with a more vigorous study of emotion in animals - with whom our most basic emotions have much in common - and more adequate immersion in the sociological and social psychology literature. But the goal of this post isn't to enumerate the many mistakes I and other authors have made about emotions. Rather, I hope to foster a healthy appreciation of the benefits of uncertainty.

Many of the mistakes we make when we experience emotions are due to the illusion of certainty they create. High adrenalin and cortisol emotions, particularly anger, fear, and, to a lesser degree, shame, create the profoundest illusions of certainty, due to their amphetamine effects. Amphetamines create a temporary sense of confidence by increasing metabolic energy production, while narrowing mental focus and eliminating most variables from consideration. That's why you feel more confident after a cup of coffee than before it. It's why feel more confident that you are right and everyone else is wrong when you're angry, that something is dangerous when you're afraid, and that you're failing or defective when you're ashamed.

Certainty itself is really an emotional state, not an intellectual one. To create a feeling of certainty, the brain must filter out far more information than it processes, which, of course, greatly increases its already high error rate during emotional arousal. In other words, the more certain you feel, the more likely you are wrong.

Mental focus, the foundation of feelings of certainty, distorts reality by magnifying and amplifying one or two aspects of it while filtering out everything else. You might discover more detail about the one or two aspects you focus on, but what you discover will have no contextual meaning, because you have isolated those aspects from their dynamic interaction with the rest of the reality in which they exist. In other words, focus magnifies things out of proportion and blows them out of context.

The Science of Uncertainty
Uncertainty is the foundation of science. Scientific "knowledge" is not a collection of facts but a schedule of probabilities, i.e., how likely a series of hypotheses are to be true, based on the likelihood that the series of observations supporting them are true. Science advances by constantly testing its assumptions - all of which have built-in biases - with different observations made with different methods from different vantage points, all of which have built-in reality distortions, because they require focus and relative reference points. Wherever you shine light you create shadows. Scientific inquiry pieces together those observations with the highest probability of minimal distortions, to come up with a composite, dynamic picture of reality that is never complete and bound to change with more observations and hypothesis-testing.

Yet the uncertainty that drives scientific inquiry to constantly test and reject its assumptions and observations does not lead us in circles; despite occasional blind alleys, science - and the technology derived from it - does progress. It's safe to say that we won't return to thinking that the world is flat or that some emotions are caused by demons or evil spirits. We know more now than we did a few years ago, but what we know and the way we know it changes almost daily.

Coping with Uncertainty
How we cope with uncertainty determines how well we do in science and, more important, how well we do in life. Uncertainty, if we can tolerate it, drives us to learn more intellectually and connect to one another emotionally. It can make us smarter and more compassionate, as long as we can tolerate it.

Unfortunately, humans have a great deal of trouble tolerating uncertainty because it provokes anxiety - what you don't know might kill you. Experiments show that more anxious people have lower tolerance of ambiguity and are more likely to generalize and miss nuance of perception, not because they are less intelligent or less sensitive or more prejudice but because they are more anxious - calm the anxiety and they do much better. It is temperamentally harder for them to do what we all must do - use uncertainty as a motivation to learn and connect. Yet, to their enormous credit, most temperamentally anxious people are able to overcome that disability; most learn and connect reasonably well.

All of us, at one time or another, have reacted to uncertainty, not by learning and connecting, but by trying to pretend that it doesn't exist. Instead of seeing it as a friend, we vainly try to defeat it - or cover it up - with dogma, superstition, delusions, drugs, ego, attempts to control the environment and other people, perfectionism, depression, and anger.

And all of us, at one time or another, cope with uncertainty through an implicit recognition that it gives value and meaning to life and that our quest to understand and connect, in the long run, makes us less feel vulnerable. More important, we sometimes grasp that the ever-changing, never-completed picture of reality that uncertainty drives us to piece together is the substance of our lives.

Life can be hard for the certain - reality simply won't cooperate with their view of it. Fortunately, life can also be exciting and more valuable for those who embrace its inherent uncertainty.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

This Stuff Just Comes Pouring Out Of Me

Another actual conversation...

you know, i sort of know Mr Grass
 me I'm sure he does a good job...
 t:  i work with a guy who was a partner once upon a time
built the web site for him
 me:  There's a web site????????
 t:  the guy i work with almost bought him out, but decided to not be a lwn service for the rest of his life
me:  I could be a lwn service...sure beats insurance
t:  instead he builds porn sites on the side
me:  of course, porn is always an option
 t:  makes the internet run...
 me:  how much money in the porn site game?
 t:  a lot.
 me:  that insidious porn site game
 t:  really
 me:  is he the guy that makes a billion pop ups come up when you hit a porn site and try to back out?  lol
 t:  no i don't think he's that annoying
 me:  More importantly, does he have a nicer house than you??
 t:  um yeah - i don't socialize with him outside of work
i think he's got ties to people in thailand that shoot vid in brothels
 me:  NICE!  thats the way to go...don't have to hire anyone...
 t:  lol

I am sick.  I know that I am sick...luckily, most of my friends find it mildly amusing.

This Is Why I Get Those "Snarky Blogger" Tags

I keep seeing the lawn service truck with the words "Mr. Grass" painted on the side, and, I must say that I find the whole idea of "Mr. Grass" to be endlessly amusing.  What an excellent name for a business!  Personally, I will never forget it. 
I wonder Mr. Grass requires one to buy in bulk, or if smaller quantities are available?
I bet he gets that a lot.
(Ahem...I'm sure that the real Mr. Grass is a lovely person.  If I had a lawn to speak of, or, a lawn at all, Mr. Grass would be on speed dial.)
In other news, my friends had some windows broken out of their vehicle last night, for the second time, which leads me to wonder if I can get a window sticker for my car that reads "Retardedly loud car alarm installed" or some variation thereof, because replacing car windows is a gigantic Pain In The Ass.
What possesses one to smash car windows?  They didn't steal the car or anything in it, just smashed out the windows....assholes.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I Wonder...

Is it bad that I keep this thing in a folder and every once in a while I have to post it? I know its only Tuesday, but I'm ready for a night off. Better go check what is in the fridge...

The Level Of Your Cheapness Astounds Me

So, I work at an insurance company--pretty sure we established that--and, I open a lot of mail every day.  A revolting amount of mail.  So much mail that there is a serious danger of me getting a repetitive stress injury of some kind, during the wielding of the letter opener (which needs sharpening, by the way, because...I open a lot of freaking mail).
What I have found is that among our insured, there are a lot of very, very cheap people.  Also, these very, very cheap people are people of strong faith.  Allow me to explain.
The insurance industry is so far from going "paperless" that I fully expect to attend my grandchildren's high school graduations before anyone in the business even considers it.  And, just so you know, my children are 13 and 15, and neither of them has expressed any desire to have children just yet.  That is how far away from "paperless" we are.
We send and receive enormous amounts of paper.  Every department and every sub-department has stuff that they mail or fax, and stuff that they receive.  Mountains and mountains of it.  The building where I work has 4 mail drops a day.  FOUR.  I work mostly with the Sales pile of mail, which takes well over an hour to open, daily, well over two hours on a Monday.  To that, you may add two fax machines that are almost continuously printing.
We are quite serious about pieces of paper because of all of the documentation the law requires, so when we get it, we date it, then copies of copies are sent to various other people in order to legally verify that you are asking for whatever it is that you are asking for, and it all has to be in somebody's hands before the sun goes down on the 7th day or whateverthefuck the deal is this month.  If you want to apply for insurance, file a claim, pay your premium, or tell us to fuck off, we expect you to do it within a certain time frame, otherwise, you're screwed until the next month because the Gods of Insurance Timeliness and Law say that we can blow you off if you don't adhere to our schedule.
Because we send out a LOT of mail, we get some of it back--people move, or they die, or they just don't want to buy what we're selling, so we see a fair amount of "Return to Sender".
This is where the cheap people come in.
"Return to Sender" is not priority with me--I look at that pile of mail about once a month, and usually only when it is starting to clutter up my desk. 
You'd think that the only thing we would find in returned mail is stuff that WE had sent to other people, wouldn't you?  You would be wrong...
Yesterday, I found three checks for premium payments (dude, you're late, we cancelled your insurance), four requests to cancel insurance (dude, you're late, we're billing you for another month), and a few random claim requests, and some applications for insurance that they wanted to be in effect on January 1st.  The cheap people had taken some envelope of ours, in which we sent them something completely unrelated to a payment or an application, took our stuff out, put their stuff in, marked "Return to Sender" or "Refuse" or something on the envelope, and threw it back in their mailbox.
Because stamps are so damned expensive.
I would call this a complete leap of faith.  For one thing, you don't know what the mailman is going to do with that envelope.  Also, if the mailman DOES return that piece of mail to this building, it will almost certainly go to the wrong department, because if there is one thing we have a lot of, its departments.  Personally, I don't deal with anything pertaining to payments, so when I open a piece of mail and a check falls out, I start to look around for the hidden camera.  Then I have to figure out which of the 27 departments that DOES accept checks is supposed to get your particular check.  This takes time.
I am certain that these people of great faith, who believe that we have the time and desire to dig through returned mail to search for their premium payments and insurance applications, are the same people who call our customer service department and complain that they SENT it, so WE must have LOST it.
People, people, people...I'm busy.  Damned busy.  Busy as hell.  It is only because I am a nice person that I even bother to re-route the crap you were too cheap to put a stamp on.  92% of the people in this building wouldn't bother.  I am not kidding.  They're busy, too. 
I don't claim to know how much a stamp costs, but I have to believe that it is not prohibitively expensive--I mean...if you can afford to pay an insurance premium, TRUST ME, you can afford a freaking stamp.  And envelopes.  And perhaps some nice stationary for that "You guys suck" note that you included with your cancellation request.  And probably a new car.  Insurance is expensive.
This morning on my commute I couldn't stop thinking about the cheap people.  I tried to picture what they would be like on a date, or what they would be like to live with.  Miserable.  Absolutely miserable.  This from someone who considers themselves quite frugal.  I picture them stuffing their pockets with ketchup packets at restaurants and emptying the packets into a bottle at home.  Scary business.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Deep And Weird

My baby brother sent me a text message at 9AM on a Tuesday, asking if I had seen the movie "I'm Not There".

"No", I replied.

He answered, "I'm watching it.  It is deep and weird, just like you."

Director Todd Haynes, when asked why he made this movie, exclaimed that "Bob Dylan made me do it" and that his (Todd's) hands were "tied behind my back!" 

Figuratively speaking, I'm certain.

What he said immediately reminded me of a favorite lyric--If my hands are tied, must I not wonder within, who tied them and why, and where must I have been?

Dylan song.  Oh, the irony.

Mr. Haynes' answer did not seem as strange to me as the fact that someone chose to ask him "Why?"  The interviewer was an idiot, though "Why?" is not always a stupid question.  It is sometimes a painful one to ask an artist, however.

Sometimes, a thing is made as a result of a long, drawn-out obsession that you could no sooner explain than you could take out and switch your own eyeballs from one socket to the other and have them still work when you had completely the grisly task.

Let us not forget that in the throws of obsession, the eyeball option could potentially start to make sense.

The thing is, you don't know why.  You have no idea.  Sometimes, you're not sure you even wrote a thing so much as you just looked up, saw it hanging in the sky, and plucked it out of the air.

Obsession is like rocket fuel for a writer.  High Octane..  Fast-burning.  Expensive.  Sometimes it takes you somewhere.  Sometimes you just blow up.  Sometimes, you think you have arrived at "somewhere", while the rest of the world is convinced that you have, in fact, blown up.  You can't really win when you're losing your mind.  Explaining why you did a thing isn't going to make anybody else like the thing or, like the fact that you took time out of your life to do it.  Better to just speak the truth, which is to say that you did it so you could finally find some peace.

"Deep and Weird", something my brother meant as a compliment, is the type of high praise that could only come from someone who is, themselves, a little deep, and a little weird.  Like my brother.  Maybe its an Aquarian thing--He's having a birthday today.

Randy once wandered the streets of Okinawa looking for a barber who spoke no English, because he figured that was his best chance at getting a "real" haircut in Japan.  He's like that.  He thinks about the authentic experience.  He doesn't go for things produced by huge conglomerates--he'd rather have the thing handmade by "some dude".  He lives a very relaxed existence with out on the prairie, in a town with a population of about 12, if you count his fiance and their two cats.  Of all of my siblings, he is the one most likely to drunk dial me.  He still has that worn-out copy of Cyrano de Bergerac that I gave him when he was 13, but no longer owns the Bible with which he was confirmed.  He listens to ancient blues records.  He is incredibly opinionated, while still being among the most open-minded people I have ever known.  He regularly plucks things out of the air, and fearlessly shares his finds.  Occasionally, you find him inquiring about rocket fuel.

Oh, and he likes Bob Dylan.

I lucked into this man as a brother, given the fact that you can't choose your siblings.  While I may lead the family charge in the Deep and Weird department, he runs a close second.  And I mean that as a compliment.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Little Things That Make Me Smile

  • People who drive mini-vans.  Its just so comical.
  • The lunch lady greets me by name.  Never mind the that I work in a secure building and we all have these geek tags and name tags and key cards hanging all over us.  Never mind that I am easily identified by anyone within these four walls....Forget all that.  The fact that every time the lunch lady sees me, she says, "Hey, Shelly!  How are you?" makes me stupid happy.  Makes me think, "Yeah, its a $7 quesadilla, but...that's OK!"  Give that girl a raise.
  • Seeing the top of my desk.  When I finally clear away all the piles of paper (which does happen occasionally!), the sheer delight of the moment takes me away to a happy place.
  • Fire Escape by Fastball.  What a perfect song this is...check it out on the widget if you haven't heard it...(For those of you reading on Facebook or MySpace, Come Here!  Its where I keep the widgets...)  I've always thought this was a perfect little song, but hadn't heard it in a while, until somebody played it yesterday.  Yup, still perfect.  Speaking of cool songs,
  • Don't Be Lonely.  Sure, people look at you funny when you're dancing at your desk...That's OK!  Give that girl a raise!  (Sorry, no widgetty love on that track, but you can be all retro and go buy the album HERE.  And you can tell that I AM retro, cuz I used the word "album".)
  • Steak.  I am rather unapologetic about the carnivore thing.  I can't wait to get home.  There might even be a cold Schells to go with that hunk of beef that is waiting for me...and a pan of brownies.  And I promise to eat it while sitting on the floor in front of the television.  Its Friday...
  • This City.  Driving in to work this morning, I had a real "I love this town" moment.  I was exciting 494 North and looked back on a beautiful sunrise.  The temperature was cold, but nice--things were covered in frost, and it everything looked really cool.  I'm just....really loving the fact that I am here right now.  Life is really, really good right now.  I haven't even had the time to think about it until just this morning.

Friday Fluff

I haven't Blog-Thing'ed in a while...

You Are Lukewarm

You feel open and generous sometimes, but you don't always feel like being friendly.

You're not naturally outgoing or curious about people. Being around others drains your resources.

So considering how you feel, you're actually quite warm. You do your best.

And you often find it easy to be warm toward the people you like the most.

"Lukewarm"! Yeah!!! I figured it would be "Cold Hearted Bitch", but apparently the years have warmed me somewhat...

Your Hidden Talent is Understanding People

Your natural talent is interpersonal relations and dealing with people.

You communicate well and are able to bring disparate groups together.

Your calming presence helps everything go more smoothly.

People crave your praise and complements.

You Are a Dreaming Soul

Your vivid imagination takes you away from this world

So much so that you tend to live in your head most of the time.

You have great dreams and ambitions that could be the envy of all...

But for you, following through with your dreams is a bit difficult.

You are charming, endearing, and people tend to love you.

Forgiving and tolerant, you see the world through rose colored glasses.

Underneath it all, you are brimming with passion that you keep hidden.

Always hopeful, you tend to expect positive outcomes in your life.

Souls you are most compatible with: Newborn Soul, Prophet Soul, and Traveler Soul

And, it's always good to check the Aura every once in a while...

Your Aura is Blue

Spiritual and calm, you tend to live a quiet but enriching life.

You are very giving of yourself. And it's hard for you to let go of relationships.

The purpose of your life: showing love to other people

Famous blues include: Angelina Jolie, the Dali Lama, Oprah

Careers for you to try: Psychic, Peace Corps Volunteer, Counselor

Still Blue! Amazing. That's right, and the Dali Lama...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Got Your Crazy

I was sharing some Crazy People stories with Vikki, and this one came up...its one of my all-time favorite examples of Crazy, so...let's tell!

We call this story...You Gotta Be Doin' A Better Job

We'll hop in the Way-Back Machine and go all the way back to the Late 1980's. Back when I was working at a Top 40 radio station. Back when John Mellencamp's Lonesome Jubilee came out, and I listened to it relentlessly.

Back when This Guy had This Much hair. (Personally, I barely recall, but Barb swears she remembers the hair. She's always eye-balling the drummer. He looks so much better now! And for those of you crying about how I never post old pictures of myself but always seem to pick on everybody else, I will now remind you of this post, from last year...)

For me, it was definitely a Must. See. Mellencamp. kind of time (still is, actually...). Lo and behold, there was a tour. And my boss had tickets.

But, because I worked in radio, I wasn't given the option of an uncomplicated Go See Mellencamp kind of evening.

No....oh no. Not that...

Because I worked in radio, I was asked to escort about 40 listeners to Go See Mellencamp. I would say that it was a glorified babysitter kind of responsibility, but its actually more like a Cruise Director thing. Everyone is half drunk (or, all the way drunk), and basically you just have to make sure that they get there, that they don't die or kill anyone while they are at the concert (arrested? You're on your own), and then make sure that they get back. Meanwhile, I had to act like I was Somebody because those 40 drunk people were promised that Somebody was going to host that party. Yeah, yeah...I can fake if for a few hours.

It wasn't as blisteringly painful as having to escort a fan backstage to meet anybody, so, OK, I'll do it!

Besides....I REEEEEAAAALLY wanted to see Mellencamp. Really-really. I probably would have endured a lot more than Cruise Directorship to get my ass in the door that night. Wrangling 40 people was no big deal.

We met up to load the bus, and all my little charges were accounted for. We counted every breathing body on that bus 6 or 7 times. Then we counted the concert tickets, 10-12 times. 40 people. 40 tickets. 40 people. 40 tickets. Got it. Good. We're off!

The drive itself was actually a lot of fun. In addition to the listeners, my best friend was on the bus with me, and if you're going to hang out in a crowd, I must recommend, once again, taking Barb with you, cuz the girl has ice-breaking down to a science. I mean, I'm no slouch, but, she's got it DOWN. In addition to Barb, we were joined by a rep from the company who sold the radio station the tickets and arranged the bus for the night. I don't remember his name, but for the sake of calling him something, we'll say it was "Chuck". He was a pretty cool guy, and between Barb, Chuck and me, the whole group was laughing and talking for the entire trip.

Since I personally counted every body and every ticket 50 or 60 times and earned the title "Total Freak About The Tickets", I felt confident that when we arrived at the venue, all we had to do was put one ticket in each person's hand as they exited the bus, and they would all enjoy an incredible show and hopefully they would stay out of my hair for the rest of the night.

Hmmm could that have possibly gone wrong?

We arrived, and Chuck handed me the envelope with the tickets, then took off to check on something, so, I once again, counted people, and counted tickets.

Only now, its wasn't 40 People, 40 Tickets.

Now it was 40 people, 38 tickets.

Uh....What? I got the sinking feeling that I had just escorted 40 people on a stupid bus ride for nothing, because Cruise Directors get their tickets AFTER everybody else has theirs, so, if there were tickets missing, I would be the one not attending. Clearly unacceptable! Hey, its hard work pretending you're Somebody for three solid hours! A girl needs her reward!

We went looking for our man, Chuck.

When we found him, he was in the middle of negotiating with some nice people on the sidewalk, a very substantial price for two 10th row Mellencamp tickets.

Ahem....What The Fuck, Chuck?

Confronted, he claimed that the tickets he was selling were "extra" tickets, and that we had all the tickets we would ever need, right there in our little envelope. We didn't, but, I suppose Chuck figured that explanation was worth a try.

The funny thing is, if Chuck has just sold the tickets for face value (probably about 25 bucks apiece back then), he could have had the cash in pocket, and the buyers would have been long gone before we ever found them there on the sidewalk. Unfortunately, he was asking about ten times that amount, and these things take time. The potential buyers were still hemming and hawing on the deal when we showed up to ruin Chuck's night. When they heard what we had to say, they backed out of the deal, and we were left to take care of Chuck, who immediately started back-peddling, beginning with these words:

"You guys gotta be doin' a better job! You gotta PAY ATTENTION to this shit!"

He proceeded to tell us how his swiping tickets and trying to sell them was all our fault, and we should have known better and we should have kept a better eye on him. He took it upon himself to scold us for losing track of the tickets that he stole!



I can't remember how we dealt with Chuck--I seem to recall that he got fired, but, like I said, that was 20 years ago, so, what the hell do I know? I can't even remember the guy's actual name! But I will never forget "You gotta be doin' a better job!". He kept repeating it over and over. It was the funniest damn thing I heard during the entire decade of the 80's. In fact, to this very day, 20 years later, Barb and I STILL say that to each other, all the time. We don't even need an occasion--just, every once in a while...

"You gotta be doin' a better job!"

Burning dinner? "You gotta be doin' a better job!"
Drop the phone? "You gotta be doin' a better job!"
Drip hot chocolate on your shirt? "You gotta be doin' a better job!"

I works so well with every dumb thing you do, right? And its especially fun to say it when the person is doing just fine.

Some dumb co-worker being a total jerk? Well, then YOU gotta be doin' a better job!

As you can see, the possibilities are endless.

By the way? Amaaaaaaaazing Show! Well worth the stupidity....

I Heart Spam

Spam.  The delicious meaty treat made right here in Minnesota.
Spam.  The hilarious emails sent to you by people who assume that your personal stupidity knows no bounds.
Which would you rather have? be honest, today I think I'd rather have the delicious meaty treat.  Sliced and fried. Served with maple syrup.
No such luck.
You know it!  You love it!  Spam Game!  What's in your Spam folder this week?  Here is some of mine.
The reasonable woman never will say to you, that she is dissatisfied.  You're right…only UNreasonable women are ever dissatisfied…


Keepsake plate honoring the 44th president.  People still collect plates?


Worried that tiny size will get you down?‎  Wait…are we still talking about keepsake plates?


If there will be only girls around, will you be ready?‎  That depends on what those girls are looking for in a girl….


Add more spice into your bedroom life.  For some reason, cumin comes to mind…What?


Only here you can find solution to all your male troubles.  Oh, honey…most of my male troubles can only be solved with an anvil dropped on their head.  Do you sell anvils?


The best kind of natural high.   Colorado Rocky Mountain Hiiiiiiigh…..really, I should be skiing.  Perhaps if I clear my head on the slopes for a couple of days, I can come up with some new material and stop having to play the Spam Game.


High definition sunglasses that fit over your prescription glasses‎.  Because NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING is hotter than a geeky chick wearing glasses OVER her glasses!


Try and believe in itself‎.  Ok, that just confusing.  Are we speaking in the first person?  Or third?  What is this, a Dylan lyric?


Wow..Mens Love This‎.  If the "this" in question is anything other than control of the television remote, then this is probably a lie.


Do the favour to the woman! Yes!  Give us the damn remote!


Wanna get a larger boner?‎ *sigh*  Any port in a storm, baby…any port in a storm.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Little Help

For some fuzzy buddies.  Visit the Animal Rescue Site and click!  And thanks to Cursing Mama for reminding us!

Quirky QuickMix

I listen to Pandora at work sometimes.  I think I finally have it tuned the way I want it.  I still get a quirky Quck Mix from time to time--like, I'll hear "Sheena Is A Punk Rocker", and then the next song is "The Story" by Brandi Carlile or something.
We would refer to that as a TRAIN WRECK of a segue.
Shake it off.  Moving on...
Today was an exellent Pandora day.  Every third other song was an old Rolling Stones song.  Wild Horses, baby.  That's what I'm talking about...
I didn't even know I was in the mood until I was.
Of course, it was Stones peppered with Fall Out Boy, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Duffy, etc.  And just to annoy Barb, I emailed her with stuff like this:
"OMG!  Guess what song is on?  I LOVE THIS SONG!"
Cuz she loves it when I say "I love this song!"  Don't you Barb?


There is this guy in my office who flirts with me.  Well, actually, he does that, "I'm not flirting with you" flirt, like he hangs around near where I am, playing it cool, talking about things not related to work (himself, mostly), to everyone but me, but loud enough for me to hear everything.
Boys are funny.  Some of them just can't stand it if you don't acknowledge that they are special..
Given his style of flirting, I know that I don't have to ever worry about him actually asking me out or anything--he seems to be one of those that likes to sell himself and sell himself until he can convince me that he is worth my full and complete attention.  The old "Wear Her Down" tactic.  Did I mention that both of the men I was married to are sales people?  How the hell do you think they got me to go out with them in the first place?
Never mind the fact that nothing screams Bad Idea like dating someone you work with--lets just put that aside for a moment.  The fact is...I've dated this guy my whole life.  I was married to him a couple of times, too.  He talks about how awesome he is until he finally gets me to agree that yes, he is awesome, and we get together and then the entire relationship is all about his awesomeness.
I'm so over that.
I'm going to hold out for someone who thinks I am awesome.  Risky, I could be a long wait.  I could very well be alone for the rest of my life.  You know what?  I really don't care.