Thursday, September 27, 2007

Hubs and I are waging a war against cupboard moths. We thought we'd eradicated them by throwing out almost every food item in our kitchen and sanitizing our cupboards. We bought hermetically sealed food containers and vowed to use only those from now on. And yet, they have managed to return. I bought a brand new bag of rice, put it in a hermetically sealed jar, closed the lid, and two days later it's crawling with moth larvae. Apparently we are going to have to throw out the remaining food (some web sites say the larvae get into spices, too), remove the ugly light covers and clean up in that godforsaken area and bleach the whole kitchen.
Meanwhile we are conducting an experiment with the larvae in the rice, waiting to see if they will spin cocoons and become moths. Sort of disgusting. Perhaps I should document with photos!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Slightly creepy thing about the post below: I actually often use the number 42 as an example, ie., "There were like 42 moths in the cupboard."




You're The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy!

by Douglas Adams

Considered by many to be one of the funniest people around, you are
quite an entertainer. You've also traveled to the far reaches of what you deem possible,
often confused and unsure of yourself. Life continues to jostle you around like a marble,
but it's shown you so much of the world that you don't care. Wacky adventures continue to
lie ahead. Your favorite number is 42.



Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

I need to warn everyone that a new "Bachelor" season has started. My husband was kind enough to record it for me and after I watch it tonight I am going to torture you all with one-sided discussions about the, no doubt, top quality females on the program.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Firstly, a grand con-grada-lations (it's a long story) to Katie, who is growing a tiny, tiny little baby in her tummy! I am inordinately excited about it. :-)

Secondly, since I amuse myself to no end, I am pasting an email that I wrote to my friends and family probably in 2002/03-ish when I lived in Sonora and every small detail was fodder.

Subject: sfantastic!!
And a happy Monday evening to ya'll. It's 11 p.m. and I just recently got home from a weekend jaunt in the Bay Area, spent mostly doing laundry and eating my parents' food while staring blankly at clothing I can't afford in catalogs and rather disgustedly at "Trading Spaces," during an episode in which a rotund designer named Frank decided to "Aruba-cize" someone's bedroom by painting it bright teal blue. The end result was quite awful.
So I haven't written in at least a few weeks, I guess, but I've been just a busy little bee. A few weekends ago, I visited Fresno, land of ... well, many things, and not many of them good. But the important thing was I met up with old Spartan Daily folks Mike, Michelle and Minal - don't fault them for all having names that start with "M." We ate a lot of meat and did a lot of talking, took a tour of the posh Fresno Bee and saw "Matchstick Men," which I highly recommend.
The following weekend involved a trip to San Francisco's Sharon Meadow with Jacq for the Now and Zen Festival, which featured Duran Duran and Seal among others. It was quite fun although it was the only blisteringly hot day in SF all year and barely a spot of shade was to be found. And the vendors all ran out of water, prompting Jacq to file a complaint with security, who looked at her like, "Sure lady, I'll get right on that."
Jacq is Jacq. Jacq did not want to wait in the mile-long line for 45 minutes and truly believed she should not have to, seeing as how she is a cute chick and guys should WANT her to cut in front of them. But having been more of a normal looking person for most of my life, I realized that if we even suggested that we'd cut in line to those who'd already been waiting for a while, we'd be quickly murdered and buried and no one would be the wiser.
Poison Oak Update: I am convinced that whatever I STILL HAVE is not poison oak and that the doctor I saw should, perhaps, try to cut in line at the Now and Zen Fest and see what happens. I itch. My arms, my neck, my everything itches. What sort of doctor prescribes prednisone for poison oak? Have any of you ever taken this for that? No? I did not think so. What's more is I am pretty sure the prednisone has made me start to go crazy. I'd elaborate, but it's ... involved.
So there are a couple of different wars going on in Sonora right now, the first one being that which my landlady (Ernie for those not in the know) is waging against the poor, unsuspecting deer. The deer (which some locals refer to as the rats of the Sierra) managed to weasel their way UNDER her 8-foot-tall fence and chomp on her apple trees and other plants. You'll recall Ernie terrorized one buck until it broke its own neck on the fencepost and died in the yard. Well. I noticed a fawn and a mama deer in the yard the other day and decided to try to shoo them out before The Landlady noticed, but alas. She noticed. The deer did not escape unscathed. The mom did but the baby ended up breaking its own leg and somehow hobbling out like a wounded soldier and disappearing. It's probably dying a horribly agonizing and slow death in the woods somewhere.
The second battle is one Minal will appreciate. I call it Operation Eradicate Backfat. It's being waged by myself and several unsuccessful coworkers who continue to go on cookie runs to the enemy's lair, called Bon Apetit, aka The Pie Tin. The Pie Tin has managed to perfect its cookie weapons and scoffs at our valiant attempts to avoid them as they practically jump from the jars into our mouths like scud missiles. They're so confident in their ability to promote backfat that they brazenly post the number of cookies they've made throughout the week. Saturday, I noticed, it was up to some horrific number, like 274, most of which were consumed by unsuspecting reporters.
Ok. Moving right along.
I am thinking of being Dolly Parton for Halloween. But I'm officially asking YOU for your advice. I need to be something really cool because it's going to be hard to top last year's costume - Princess Leia. I had buns and everything. And I've never been blonde for Halloween so that's the goal this year, whatever the costume ends up being, it just has to include a blonde wig. If you come up with the best idea, why, you'll get a mention in these lovely neverending emails.
Mmmm. By the way, in the "Who do I look like series," I now have been said to look like a person named Jennifer Irwin, who plays someone's sister on a show I never watch - "Still Standing." Our tech guy at work, Derek, who I'm convinved does nothing all day, is on a quest to find my perfect match. He's the one who came up with the largely unflattering and big-nosed Patty Souza, the local weather girl on channel 3.
So I am a bad person and I never added a couple of former co-workers of mine to the email list - Nadia and Stephen. They are easily the coolest people I had the privilege of hanging out with outside of work and MAN can they slam those margaritas. We had loads of fun talking smack about everyone and their mama and pulling pranks on eachother, such as the time Nadia hid chocolate bars in Stephen's sandwich. A priceless moment, I assure you. Stephen made Nadia and I name placard thingies that say "Freak #1" and "Freak #2." I am Freak #2 and I put it on my desk at work so that people have fair warning before they decided to actually talk to me.
Anyway, welcome Nadia and Stephen to the list, although I couldn't remember Stephen's last name, so Nadia, could you please forward this on to him?
Many thanks.
I hope everyone's week has started off well. Fight the good fight!
MOAM

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Yesterday I watched my heart, or rather, an ultrasound image of my heart, beating on a computer screen. I watched flaps open and close, I watched the muscle machine constrict over and over and I heard the thumping magnified for recording purposes. I didn't really believe it all.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

This morning I was somewhat bemused and somewhat saddened to read my favorite SFGate columnist's article on his dismay over what he perceives to be repulsive fast food commercials advertising even more repulsive fast food, particularly Wendy's and even more particularly "The Baconator."
Morford wonders why there aren't laws against this sort of advertising the same way there are laws that restrict the advertising of other things that are bad for us, like cigarettes. The answer to that seems simple enough to me. It is not necessary to consume cigarettes to keep on living (some might disagree) but it is necessary to consume food to keep on living. Certainly, it is not necessary to consume Baconators to keep on living, but we are a hungry, stressed lot who want something more appetizing to consume than a bowl of wheat bran, despite knowing it's about as good for us as an IV drip of lard.
Morford, who has mentioned in past columns that he is a yoga instructor, also says he watches little television, and he surmises that the target audience for said commercials are overweight, illiterate frat boys. Methinks he's forgotten who HIS target audience is. I won't bother to look up the latest statistics on what percentage of Americans are obese, but last I heard it was more than half. Chances are he's offended a few Baconator-eating souls out there today.
http://www.sfgate.com/columnists/morford/

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

These kinds of stories really make my day (although I'd prefer no one had died):


Armless Man Delivers Fatal Head-Butt
By DOUG GROSS, Associated Press Writer
Tuesday, September 18, 2007

(09-18) 13:22 PDT Snellville, Ga. (AP) --
Police are investigating the death of a man who collapsed after he was head-butted by an armless man in a fight over a woman. Snellville Police Chief Roy Whitehead said the two men, Charles Keith Teer and William Russell Redfern, scuffled Monday afternoon in the driveway of a suburban Atlanta home.
Police say Redfern, who was born with no right arm and only a short stump for his left arm, kicked Teer and Teer hit Redfern during the fight, which was due to long-standing bad blood over a woman who once dated Teer and now dates Redfern.
After bystanders separated them, Redfern "came back and head-butted (Teer) one time," Whitehead said.
Teer complained of feeling dizzy, collapsed, and died, Whitehead said.
After the fight, Redfern and the woman got into his truck and drove to the Snellville police station, Whitehead said. He said the couple had called 911 to report the dispute, then told the operator they needed an ambulance after Teer collapsed.
A woman who answered the telephone at Redfern's home, in suburban Tucker, Ga., said he had no comment. She declined to identify herself.
Police are awaiting autopsy results before deciding whether Redfern should be charged.
Known by the nickname "Rusty," Redfern made a name for himself in the late 1980s for pen and ink drawings he does using his foot.
According to the web site for VSA Arts — an affiliate of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts that promotes and showcases artists with disabilities — Redfern's drawings take one to six months to complete.
He was one of six Georgians selected to represent the state at the 1989 International Arts Festival in Washington, D.C., and was commissioned by Georgia's then-Secretary of State Max Cleland for a series of illustrations depicting the state capitol.
According to the site, he started Redfern Originals, Inc. in 1987, producing Christmas cards, stationery and limited-edition prints.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Tonight while enjoying some barbecue chicken at a salty little restaurant on Bascom, I took a sip of water and glanced at a fellow sitting toward the back, reading a book. He was probably about 40, balding, bespectacled, and smiling slightly to himself while he read his book, which I finally noticed was titled "Mistress of the Catacombs." This struck me as so funny, I almost squirt water out my nose. I had to come home and look it up on Amazon. Here's the description:

In the fourth volume of Lord of the Isles, Prince Garric of Haft, the reluctant hero now ruling the Kingdom of the Isles as best he can, has solved some of his logistical and financial problems. Unfortunately, much of his opposition comes from immaterial forces, as rogue wizards, some nonhuman, cast spells right and left. Various bestial hordes swarm in all quarters, and though the Mistress of the Catacombs remains off-stage, the mere fact that she exists raises the levels of threat to the realm and tension in the narrative. Garric isn't fighting alone, of course; sister Sharina, ghost-adviser Cashel, and student of Hell's magic Ilna guard his flanks and back. The book doesn't escape the problem, inherent to its place in the saga, of dividing its considerable length between filling in backstory and advancing the plots, counterplots, and subplots. That adversely affects pacing but not world building, characterization, and systems of magic, which are all so well conceived that the saga continues to be Drake's most ambitious work to date.
I will never again make fun of people who drink decaf. It used to be that I didn't understand why someone would bother to order a decaf coffee drink -- defeats the purpose, right? But, having been told by two doctors to stop drinking caffeine, now I understand.

Stubbornly, I've thus far refused to give up my morning cup of joe. There are a number of reasons, many surprisingly emotional.

Firstly, having been a writer in my former life, caffeine and I are old friends, attached at the hip since college. Giving it up almost seems like admitting defeat -- no, I'm not a writer any more, no, I'm not pulling any more of those late council meetings or slogging through a weekend of kitschy parades and traffic wreck coverage. But real, hard-core bitches like me drink coffee and people who don't -- well maybe they're just not as hard-core as I am. Right?

Also, I've realized that being a coffee drinker is like being part of a special community of tired and harried people, who, although grumpy, understand each other and share a bond they're probably not even aware of. They stand in line for coffee. They know the name of the person making their latte, and that person knows their name, too. They sit in cafes with each other and sip their warm drinks and it seeps into their veins deliciously.

So I've continued drinking it, although I'm becoming more sensitive to it since I only allow myself to drink one cup in the morning. And I've realized I'm going to have to give that up, too. I drink it now, and my heart immediately races. So in good conscience, I have to give it up. This is going to be the week I say good-bye to my morning jolt. I may join that league of decaf coffee drinkers I used to scorn, so I can get that biting taste and that warm stomach and stand in that line and be part of that group of tired hard-asses. But I'll know what's really in that cup, and it just won't be the same.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Today while completing cliche married-folk activities, Hubs and I were at Crate and Barrel and he noticed a lovely crystal decanter. And promptly bashed it into the shelf above where it was placed, chipping its lip. He held it closer to examine this new feature, and then looked at me sheepishly.
"Putitdownputitdownputitdown!" I said.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Today, because of my illustrious job as a property manager, I got to tour our local waste water treatment plant. In case you're wondering, "waste water" is a nice term for pee and poo. So I took this tour with a group of people who are attending the same class I am (to obtain designation as a Real Property Administrator --right now I'm just a fake one) on environmental health.
Make no mistake about it, the waste water treatment facility smells like poop. Especially the "primary treatment" center, where the new "bio-solids," aka poops, are allowed to sit until they sink to the bottom. Actually, what probably smells worse is the secondary treatment center, where they pull "hard" waste materials out of the bio-solids (which they used to call sludge for obvious reasons). There are these big scraper things that reach deep down in and grab anything that's not going to dissolve, like rags and rocks and other disgusting items completely soaked in poop. The scrapers then dump the poop-covered items on a conveyor belt and then they go bye-bye to the dump. The various treatments go on and on, and by the time the water is completely treated, it smells and looks like extremely chlorinated pool water. Our guide even claimed it was good enough to bottle and possibly even better than some bottled water out there already. Pardon me, but I will not be drinking the poop water.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I just had a very Jane Fonda learning how to use the printer in "Nine to Five" moment. I was faxing about 35 pages on a fax machine from the same year said movie came out, it seems, and a new fax was coming in. Papers were a-flying!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I spent a stimulating half hour at the Alma Drive DMV last Thursday for a mandatory in-person renewal of my driver's license. They want to make sure you sort of look like your photo and that the information contained on your license is accurate.
So I waited my turn and submitted my renewal form to the clerk, an approximately 14-year-old, bored looking young man. He proceeded to ask me if my height or weight had changed at all. Out loud. Like, in front of people. Now, mind you, my weight has changed. A lot. But, being the person I stubbornly am (my own husband doesn't know my weight and it is a bit of a sore point with him) I just pursed my lips and shook my head. Admit weight gain aloud in a public place? Pshaw!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Today my mother happens to remember that her mom had/has something called pernicious anemia, which is what my doctor thinks I might have. She used to have to get B12 shots. Apparently it runs in the family!

My mom also told me that she and my dad managed to catch three feral cats in their backyard and they took them to get fixed. This is just so out of character for my parents, especially my dad, who professes to pretty much detest all animals. But it holds with my theory that, as you age, you become fascinated with the animals in your backyard. It's inevitable.

So I must convince everyone to get on Facebook, if only to spend agonizing hours playing Scrabble. It seems so time consuming after investing so much in Myspace, but come on, peeps. Facebook -- it's the new black.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Boob shot

I thought I would finally upload this picture for everyone's viewing pleasure. I apologize for the cleavage shot ahead of time, and actually, no, I am not wearing a bra in this photo!

I actually got the results of all of my tests back today, and of all things, I am extremely deficient in vitamin B12 and folic acid and I tend toward anemia, especially during my womanly flow (haha). So now I have to take prenatal vitamins and folic acid supplements and keep taking the stuff that's keeping my heart from beating out of my chest and baby aspirin, and they still want me to do the echocardiogram and they want to watch my large thyroid. Which, the only thing wrong with it at the moment is that it is apparently very large. After I have kids it's likely to go cuckoo bonkers though. Which is fine, they have meds for that. I may have the type of stomach acid that prevents the absorption of B12, which could mean I would need to take it via shots, but that's a hell of a lot better than, say, open heart surgery.

Symptoms of B12 deficiency can include anxiety, fatigue, depression, moodiness, confusion, tingling and numbness. Check, check, check, check, check, check, check! The doctor also told me if I got pregnant with levels as low as I have, my child would probably have birth defects. Which, thank God I am not pregnant! Aside from my new vitamins, she suggests I eat foods high in B12, which include such delicacies as: Clams, beef liver, oysters, sardines, turkey giblets, chicken liver and mackerel. The list goes on, and there are other more appetizing things on there, but these most disgusting items are the highest in B12, of course.

So anyway, I want to thank my three readers for being so supportive and kind. I'm totally relieved, obviously!

Enjoy the boob shot!