Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

As I sit in my office (working vs. not having a job)
and it's 10 degrees with a wind chill of -15 in Chicago (cold vs. cold and home/jobless)
I'm thankful that I have seen the end of another year and I'm able to see the start of a new one.

I bitch, moan and wish for better (don't get me wrong, that ain't gonna stop) but I am not so blind that I don't see what I should be thankful for. It could be worse. It could always be worse. For you to be in a situation where it just couldn't TRULY get worse, you'd be dead.

I look forward to 2009 with high hopes for a continued positive outlook and a more healthy me. I'd come up with a bunch of New Year's resolutions, but I know me, I'll break them before many of you even get back to work to catch up on reading the blog posts you missed while on vacation. So let me sum it up in one New Year's Resolution/Goal.

I want to do my best to find ways to better myself so I am as happy as this little guy!


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Yes, I'm going to hell... I know....

I know one shouldn't apologize for his comedy, but I consider this a forestalling (hopefully) of the possible backlash. Before I get to it, let me say for the record:

1. I adore people with Down's Syndrome. They are one of the very few groups of humans who are unconditionally loving of other humans and strive to make others happy. What follows is not about the girl

2. I may joke about things women do and go through (Cosmo magazine, endless purse searches) but I have never been unfeeling enough or stupid enough to even make light of the fact that once a month you have to... you know....

However, this video was just BEGGING to be seen by the masses for the pure cheesiness of it and the fact that any family would openly talk about this is so absurd that Mickey Mouse may as well make a video about it too since it would be just as likely. I have to give a shout out credit to cb for pointing this out. If you're offended... it's his fault.

(warning... while no body parts are shown, this does show.. detail.. watch at your own peril! and remember... blue, white... blue, white....)

Bring out the Bitch Box....

Yep, pack away that warm fuzzy Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa feeling, it's time to bitch about something again. (I can hear Lea from SC giggling already - more on that later)

Another pet peeve....

An escalator is not:
1. an amusement park ride - we did not stand in line just to get on this roller coaster for a fun time
2. a respite option - I know you're a lazy fat ass fucker, but sleep and loiter on your own time.
(by the way, this goes for moving sidewalks too...)

Today I was coming into the Irving Park Blue line station and could hear the train coming. This has happened plenty of times. If I get in the turn style, walk up the escalator (walk, not ride) then I have plenty of time to walk to the train and catch the last car... no problem.

UNLESS... some blankity blank blank lazy blank blank stands on the escalator and (ready?) plops her purse on the rail, pulls out her check book and starts to write a check using the rail as a hard surface! Who the fuck is she going to give a check to at the top of the stairs, or on the train ride that she HAS to write this now?

I stood there, smiling, with one foot on one step and the other on the step above, (the international sign of "I'm climbing the steps but find some hippo has stopped to write a check in front of me so my progress is impeded" which normally, with the accompanying smile, results in the offending hippo moving off to one side so I can slide by being squished like a hot wheel through the turbo crank. But this woman, glances my way, then goes back to her check.
At the top of the stairs, she takes one small step off the escalator and stops so she can shove her shit back in her bag. By the way, there are 2 people behind me and there's no room to get by Gargantua while she repacks her Sherpa bag so we all kind of bump into each other while we're waiting for space.

Finally I say, in my ever so patient voice (giggle on Lea) "Excuse me please" and she turns, without moving, looks at me and then tosses off a statement so full of understanding, empathy and apology it should be written into the annals of societal peacetime. What was this speech that's destined for a Nobel Peace Prize? "Oh, yeah..."

She takes a step aside still cramming into her purse and I'm left to try running for the train only to see it take off without me.

If I could have gotten away with it, I'd have pushed her ass onto the tracks to teach her a lesson. But then it would have derailed a train (since CTA does not employ the cow catchers of the old west) and caused me further delays.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Blogaversary to Me!!!


Today is my 1 year blogaversary! I can't believe it's been a year since this started. I can remember starting this hoping it would be so many things. I don't think it's turned into any of them except a bit therapeutic. But it has been fun and I've met some great people in the blogosphere who've become a fun part of my life. Some day soon I'm going to meet them in person and have a great laugh over drinks.

I looked back to my very first post and tried to remember what was going on then. I was in a not-so-promising work position. Since I left there I've stopped calling it a nightmare job. That name isn't exactly fair as there were good things about the job. 1-it was a job vs. NOT a job. 2- I worked with some fun and great folks. to call it a nightmare job would be incredibly mean to those folks so the position wasn't very promising, but the overall job wasn't so bad because I knew there was a good laugh or more waiting each day.

Miss Teen South Carolina was in the news for her stupidity and it looked like George Bush couldn't do much worse with HIS stupidity. Good news was that Miss SC faded... Bad news was the George actually COULD do worse with his stupidity.

Now flash forward a year. I landed a new job. It's a small association which brings its own challenges, but it also has its rewards. I have so much fun with my coworkers. The members/attendees are a hoot and even though I enjoyed my time at Pediatrics, the members were not all as welcoming as this group. The job has taken me to the Caribbean for the first time and has promise for new opportunities (once this economy turns around)

Not to get too political, but BushyButt is on his way out and Barack is on his way in. 'nuff said.

All in all, this has been a good year. It has FLOWN by, but it has been good. Looks like 2009 will be even better! There's always a challenge here or there, but since December 28, 2007, it really feels like I'm in a better position to meet those challenges.

To everyone who helped make 2008 a great year, thanks!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Six Random....

It's crazy time before the holidays and work, as always, is pulling my attention. Therefore, I'm a bit lost for ideas for blogging and I'm also tired of complaining about the weather (balmy -4 degrees as I type this)

Stephen, over at Are You There Blog..., was tagged for a Meme which required him to pass the tag on to someone else. Stephen doesn't like to burden others so asked for volunteers. Always willing to help a brother out when I can.. here I go.

The rules are: 1. Link to the person who tagged you. 2. Post the rules on your blog.
 3. Write six random things about yourself.
 4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them. 
5. Let each person know they've been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
 6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

1. I love pesto.... I think, though I've never tried it, that Pesto could even go with Peanut Butter. An old college roommate's father worked for a food company and would send food sample packages to us. We once got a gallon container of Pesto and the ease of heating up noodles and tossing some pesto into the mix was so easy I think I made that bad boy last for 6 months!

2. I used to buy pants that were too long for me just because
I've always been tall and when I was growing up if I had pants that fit length-wise, they didn't for long because I'd outgrow them. I was always either in, or not far from, a point of living in high waters. Once my beloved Eddie Bauer started making everything in tall sizes, I was saved and would often order something a bit longer just because it made me feel a bit more normal.

3. Like Stephen, I too talk to myself.. A lot! It does come from living alone and often times hearing something out loud makes a difference from hearing it in your head. Often times it's just to hear a voice in the apartment that's not from the TV. Sometimes, however, that inner voice comes out in public and in front of others that may not understand. My filter has been someone damaged because of my work with the Deaf. They don't care that I verbalize to myself (read into that that they may not KNOW I verbalize to myself, although some have noticed it and just smiled).

4. My Christmas spirit was seriously handicapped when I worked for Disney the day after Thanksgiving. Years ago I worked for Disney stores. I enjoyed the job and learned tons about customer service and the giant machine that is Disney Marketing. It was all fine and good until I worked on that fateful Friday of Fridays, the day after Thanksgiving. I know it doesn't make sense to your wallet to hear a speech about quality, but it's true, Disney stuff is good stuff and the price point is higher PARTIALLY due to that. (the other part is the Mouse is a greedy MoFo and plans to make money regardless) However, I was so entirely over John Q. Redneck saying "Well I can get this at Wal-Mart for $4!" I was quite close to saying "Then take your trailer park cheap ass to Wal-Mart and help yourself!"

5. Pop-Tarts are like Crack Cocaine. If I buy a box, there's a chance that that box may not last 24 hours in my home. If it's possible, they could be more addictive than chocolate or Crystal Meth. The only time Pop-Tarts ever lasted a respectable time in my home was once when Lea from SC came to visit (another PTJunkie) and she bought some off the wall flavor God never intended like Butterscotch Smores with Beet Juice. I never tasted them as the title sounded repulsive enough and there were a couple after Lea left. I think I finally threw them out.

6. I sang back up for Barry Manilow. OK, I'll admit, I have NO clue as to why I decided to pull out this factoid today. But it's as random as it sounds. Back in the late 90's when I was in school again I was in the university choir. Barry was making his rounds of the country and would have a local college choir come back him up on the last two songs of the concert. It was a lot of fun actually and Barry... well, he's had some SERIOUS work done. He and Joan Rivers could have a staple locale contest to see who's knee jerks when you pinch the ear.

And that's my Six Random things! I'll tag a few people without listing them here to allow them to pass should they choose.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Sanctity of Marriage....

There are couples in this country who've been together for 20+ years, but they can't get legally married because they're the same gender.

These couples could be barred from:
- visiting their partner who may be dying in the Emergency Room
- keeping the home they've lived in for years because it was in their partner's name
- lose custody of a child that they've raised because the child was biologically their partners

BUT.... in this same country this waste of Oxygen shitheap of a man, Drew Peterson, is engaged to ANOTHER woman while his current and still legal wife (wife #2) is still missing and the death of wife #1 is still under investigation as he may have murdered her!

Hey George W. Bush.... I'm SOOOO glad you and your cronies are working so hard to protect the family and the sanctity of marriage.


To this stupid girl I can only say...

Are you fucking nuts?

First - He's old enough to be your father
Second - He looks old enough to be your grandfather!
Third - (and the number 3 is key here) Do you really want to go down that road of Mrs. Drew Peterson III?

If you're that fucking stupid, go ahead. Please! DO marry him. I've always been an advocate of thinning out the herd and killing off the stupid ones and Darwin Award Winners... Maybe Drew can provide us this one service. Otherwise this man should be forbidden to marry again. Someone should Proposition 8 HIS ass!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Snow? Big surprise.... & 12 on 12 (v4) December

I've been traveling and playing catch up with work blogging has been hard as my creative juices are tired and don't want to play. Playing catch up with work so let me play catch up with you folks:

If you live in the Midwest or love watching The Weather Channel, you know what came for a visit yesterday. This was what met me on my commute home.

I know it doesn't seem much, and in the end it wasn't that deep, but the worst of it hit just as rush hour started so you know that immediately translates into Clusterf**k and a long ass commute home. At least it wasn't an ice storm with up to an inch of ice... wait, that's this coming Friday.

One post I wanted to do over the weekend was to bring back the 12 on 12 project that I haven't done since... jeez, August! So here's December's edition! (pardon this version... it's actually 10 on 12) I was in Seattle on site at a conference:

This hotel was VERY wired for technology. The TV and phone system were all Internet based. This morning for some reason the TV came on by itself before my alarm went off. It was playing good jazzy world music, but it was on a channel that played the music and had a slide show of dog pics.

I step out of my room and there's a Wall Street Journal at my neighbors door. Waking up to see my homestate's governor on the front page of the WSJ usually can't be a good thing

My registration desk at my conference. AKA My little corner of the world to sit and wait for something to go wrong.

After the attendees have had breakfast and are in session, I head out for my own caffeine supply. I'm not a coffee drinker so a Diet Pepsi does me well. Too bad the hotel is a Coke property so I have to head down to the drug store to get my fix.

Coming back to the hotel. Notice that heck of an incline??

Me blogging at the desk. In conference world if you're bored on site, that means the conference is going well.

I am also re-reading a great book. Sarum by Edward Rutherford takes the history of England from the ice age until WWII and weaves fictitious characters to help tell the tell. (kind of like Titanic... there wasn't really a Jack and Rose, but the ship was there and it did sink) He's written several books like this that are great reads.

OH boy... the hotel certainly knew who was coming to their hotel. This afternoon's snack break had cookies and cupcakes. Two words... RED VELVET! It was pretty good! It wasn't like the ones my faux-wife made me for my birthday, but it was a nice effort.

After the conference was over I went out to look around. There's a Seneca Street! (Seneca is the town in South Carolina that I grew up in.... GO BOBCATS!)

Seattle's great market with a little bit of everything!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I never cared much for Sean Penn....

When I was in high school and Fast Times at Ridgemont High came out, it was the good ole boy laugh movie. All the ass hats that I disliked in high school loved this movie so I naturally disliked it. I wasn't a burn out in high school so didn't relate.

Then he hooked up with Madonna and became the bad boy of paparazzi throw downs. No one likes a star that's too uppity for their own good.

Then came Shanghai Surprise... were we surprised? no, not so much.

And while he did an OK job in that movie where his daughter is killed and his childhood friends are either accused of the murder or investigating it, he was still not on my list of actors that I liked.

Until now....
I won't go on and on with a litany of what he did in the movie, but I'll sum it up with one of the best compliments I can give an actor; he made me forget that he was Sean Penn. He WAS Harvey Milk. Obviously I never knew Harvey Milk, but I've read about him, I know his story, I saw the documentary on Harvey Milk and heard his voice on a recording he made when he felt his life was ultimately in danger. If you don't know the story of Harvey Milk or even if you do, go see this movie.

So often the term "Oscar worthy" is tossed around too easily as a marketing tool. While I would love to see Sean win an award for his portrayal, the cynical side of me feels the subject matter will be a barrier. If it makes a difference to Sean, he's won an award with me. He took me into Harvey Milk's life in a very believable way and he's also on my "Like" list now. (which, let's face it, EVERY Hollywood actor is dying to be on!)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I'm remiss... so let me catch up....

I've been prepping for a conference and now am on site so I've been out of communication since the Palin-of-Nine blog below.

I'm in Seattle, a town I love and haven't had the chance to come to in about 4 years. I'd forgotten about one aspect.... the hills...
I'm standing on 1st Avenue looking up at the tallest building you see in the distance and that's where I have to climb to for the Kinko's. It's too early in the morning for me to mountain climb!

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy walking and hiking, but Chicago doesn't have hills. I walk everywhere in Chicago, but that's because there are no hills! I'd adapt if I lived in Seattle, and I could easily live in Seattle, but we'd have to do something about these hills.

It did dawn on me that ll the times I'd been to Seattle before with conferences, I was on 6th Avenue which seems to be the top of the hill. Obviously I didn't realize that I'd found the only upscale boutique hotel at the bottom of the hill. Also, leave it to me to find the only upscale boutique hotel in Seattle that's next door to a sex toy shop. I peeked through the windows (from outside....) and it looks like a nice sex toy shop as sex toy shops go I would guess, having NEVER been in one myself. ahem....

But Seattle is a great town and and it's obviously Christmas season here too. The hotel I'm in is decorated very nicely and has fake bubble type snow (something you have to see yourself) at the entrance. I flew out here on Saturday morning as it was snowing in Chicago. I was up so early that by the time I arrived in Seattle I was so exhausted, all I wanted to do was sleep. When we arrived at my hotel I looked out the window and said "Dammit.. it's snowing here too!" too sleepy and slow to realize that at 48 degrees, it would be hard to be snowing where I was. And, the snow was bubbly. Things are different on the west coast, but not that different.

In the spirit of the holidays, I'll leave you with a cute survey that I found over on Stephen "Wicked Hater" Rader's Blog.

You Are Prancer

You are the perfect reindeer, with perfect hooves and perfect flying form.

Why You're Naughty: Because you're Santa's pet, and you won't let anyone show you up.

Why You're Nice: You have the softest fur and the sweetest carrot breath.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A'ight Palin... you brought this on yourself!

The election is over (thank God)

We haven't seen hide nor hair of Palin except her pardoning one turkey while 12 others had their heads butchered off in camera range.
But I just ran across something at Deep South Mark's page that I had to say is the most offensive Palin connection to date.

Someone was connecting this year's elections to the Star Trek universe and came up with this....

How completely mean and unfair to Seven of Nine and the Borg civilization! I'm sure Jeri Ryan is crying in the corner at this comparison!

Even when Seven of Nine was a Borg, she was never as heartless and uncaring for other beings as Palin continues to be. Besides, even on their worst day no Borg could contemplate being as stupid as Palin.

OK, Rant over.... Come on Jeri, we'll get some ice cream and go assimilate some rednecks.

For that not-so-fresh feeling...

This ad was over at More Cool Pictures in a series of old ad sheets. What were they thinking???

Lysol.... LYSOL! That stuff burns my nose when I spray it in the bathroom. I can't imagine what it would feel like being poured on your hoochie.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Time flies when you're... asleep!

I really didn't think I would be so completely unplugged from everything last week while I was on vacation, but I was! I saw friends, went out to dinner a couple of times, watched a number of movies on TV and, of course, slept. I did a few things around the house, but that was only because my back was getting sore from laying around so much! Sometimes you just have to have a period of lazy slothfulness to make you appreciate the activities of regular life.

I did think I'd blog here or there while I was out, but seems I didn't make it into the blogosphere at all since my last post was a week ago. That means I have a lot of reading to catch up on with my fave blogs! I missed this past week's TMI Tuesday, but I would like to answer it later this week because the questions seemed fun. But can't now.. have to continue catching up on emails from while I was out. I've been at it for 2 hours now and I'm still on last Monday....

Sunday, November 23, 2008

It's Sunday evening....



Friday, November 21, 2008

The Great Southern Juxtaposition....

I left my native South Carolina in 1999. I'd grown up in the South where not only were the summers hot, but they were humid too. My love and need for living by a body of water had its positives, but it also meant that whether it was by the lake or by the ocean, I was going to exist in a humid environment.

After a short stint in Southern California, I spent my first northern winter in Ann Arbor Michigan. That's right here

for you Michaganders in the know.
Around December I started getting nose bleeds and really itchy skin. I started to worry that something was wrong and after all my time in health care (in the south) I couldn't figure out what sickness would have these symptoms. One of my coworkers asked "is your humidifier working OK?"

My what?

After 30 years of southern humidity being the thorn in my side, I now had to put humidity back INTO my environment. WTF? I didn't even know how to begin to do that.

I remember the humidifier that my mom used to put out when one of us was sick, but was that right? I remember it was fun to play with because you could put your face right in the mist and see how long it took the water to build into droplets that would roll down your face. (you get bored when you're out of school and cable TV hasn't been invented yet) But a modern humidifier?

So as I start my 9th winter in the north, I still marveled last night as I scratched my dry legs and realized, with aggravation and begrudging submission, that I had to fill my humidifier with 3 gallons of water and turn it on high for one night so I could put humidity BACK into my environment. So for the next 4 -5 months, this little contraption will be my good friend and keep me from getting ashy... (can white folks get ashy?)

(PS. To fellow blogger Bunny, who made the reverse move from MI to coastal SC, did you take yours with you? Get rid of it, you don't need it anymore!)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Oh yeah, BABY! Take 2

This was sent to me by Kevin (who caught my typo that I corrected) and while not the "Oh yeah, BABY!" geek level of Star Trek, it's still something that gets me excited! Borrowed from the New York Times (begrudgingly)

SO long, Crawford, Tex. Even before President-elect Barack Obama takes office in 61 days, effectively crowning Chicago as the site of the Western White House, the city is basking in a moment of triumph that is spilling well beyond the confines of politics.

A bid for the summer Olympics in 2016, which once seemed like a fanciful pitch, suddenly feels far closer to a sure thing. (No, the ban on lobbyists at the White House does not apply to a little presidential persuasion on the International Olympic Committee)

A spire is finally poised to be placed atop the Trump Tower here, bringing the skyscraper to 1,361 feet, the tallest American building since the Sears Tower was built three decades ago.
A new Modern Wing for the fabled Art Institute is set to open next spring, including a Renzo Piano bridge to Millennium Park, which sat in the distance of Mr. Obama’s election night victory speech here.

Yet this moment of renaissance for Chicago is about much more than architecture and athletics. For the first time in the country’s history, an American president will call this city home. And as he moves to Washington, a dose of the Chicago mood is sure to follow.

“We’re not Little Rock and we’re not Texas,” said Rick Bayless, a friend of the Obama family, who owns Frontera Grill and is among the city’s celebrity chefs. “It’s easy to put on your cowboy boots and eat all that barbecue. You can’t do that from Chicago. We’ve got a lot of muscle and it’s far too complex of a place for that.”

The complexity of Chicago, a city that is multiplying in its new diversity even as it clings to a segregated past, is rooted in the 200 neighborhoods that make up the nation’s third-largest city. America may well know Oprah Winfrey, who became a billion-dollar name through her rise to fame here, but the city holds a far broader identity.

One sign that the Obama brand is replacing the Oprah brand? The talk show tycoon is not mentioned in the city’s new tourism campaign, which invites visitors to “Experience the city the Obamas enjoy.” Ms. Winfrey’s studio is not mentioned along the list of stops, which range from Mr. Bayless’s restaurants to a bookstore in the Obamas’ Hyde Park neighborhood to Promontory Point along Lake Michigan. And souvenirs are on sale across town, with Obama shirts, hats and knickknacks arriving just in time for holiday shopping.

“It seems like there are eight million people walking around here congratulating each other,” said Scott Turow, the best-selling novelist who was born in the city. “Chicagoans are unbelievably proud of Barack and feel of course that he’s ours, because he is.”
Catching himself, he added: “I guess I should get out of the habit of calling him Barack.”

The marketing pitch, in the wake of Mr. Obama’s victory, offers a window into the two-fold psyche of the city: It is a big enough metropolis not to be easily fazed by events, though the fabric of the community is stitched just tight enough to burst in a rare moment of giddiness.
Chicago has long been a place that seems comfortable — or, at least, well adjusted — to losing, a place where you put your head down and shoulder through whatever hand is dealt you. (How could it be otherwise, considering all the practice that the cursed Chicago Cubs have provided over the years?)

In 1952, when an article in The New Yorker derisively referred to Chicago as the Second City, little offense was taken. It became a marketing pitch, with the thinking that second fiddle was far better than no fiddle at all. (Which, by the way readers, is NOT why Chicago is called the Second City... FY NY! - Chris)
But that gawking, out-of-town amazement — gee, there really is a city here! — has long outlived its currency. Well before Mr. Obama was elected as the nation’s 44th president — a fact that was proudly amplified by Mayor Richard M. Daley, who ordered up banners with a sketch of the president-elect to hang throughout the city — Chicago was experiencing one of its most blossoming periods in food, fashion and the arts.
Now, people around the country and the world are simply noticing.

Jeff Tweedy, the leader of the band Wilco who grew up in downstate Illinois and lives in Chicago, said the city never felt the inferiority complex that outsiders spend so much time musing about. Still, he said, the election of Mr. Obama, a friend for years, has given an unusual boost of confidence in a city that is usually nonplussed. “I think people really do enjoy the idea that we’re living in the center of the world all of the sudden,” Mr. Tweedy said. “There have been all these prevailing stereotypes, and people don’t know how big and urban Chicago actually is. People think of it as being in a cornfield.”

If the country is set to see more of Chicago over the next four years — many people across the city here are too humble, nervous and practical to automatically assume Mr. Obama will be in office for eight years — at least one introductory lesson is in order.

Like I said OH YEAH BABY!!!

Oh yeah BABY!

What has me geeked out and almost as excited as my upcoming week off from work?

I am not technologically advanced enough to rip it from the site and embed it here, so I'll just have to give you the person I see as the best retro fit for the character, Zachary Quinto.

Yeah, I'm biased because of Heroes, but even thought it looks like a great cast, none of the others just scream a younger version of the original like Zach does.
In the trailer you see just a bit of Simon Pegg of Shaun of the Dead fame as Scotty. I think he's going to be a hoot for sure!
(Brace yourself for Star Trek Geek analysis)
There was a development with Start Trek: The Next Generation (TNG) that never seemed to be able to happen with the original series until their latter movies. In the original series, you got a feel for the characters, but it was flat. Once TNG got its pace, the writers were able to infuse real characteristics and fluid traits that the constant viewer came to know and attribute to the character. Much like a soap opera, a constant viewer could see things in the later episodes that are from earlier episodes.
The new prequel movie seems to be able to take the character development and make the characters more interactive than the original series was probably able to do.
I can't wait...
May 8.... find me off work and in line for opening night!
Now where is Harry Potter....

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Long Lost TMI Tuesday

I've missed a few of the TMI Tuesdays recently. Either they were not a topic I wished to discuss, or it was just a week where blogging was on the back burner to work or something. This week's seemed fun and innocuous enough :)

Welcome back to TMI Tuesday!

1. When did you last use your cellular telephone as a flashlight?
Last night... when will I use it again? Tonight... I also use it as my alarm clock and my only phone (no more land line) As I turn off the lights in my apt going to bed, I have my phone in hand and that last step or two could be in the dark.

2. On a scale from 1-10, how comfy are you being naked?
Alone 10, with others, 5 or less, depends on who and how they look. No matter what I look like, I'll always be the fat kid in my mind.

3. What is the longest you've ever been celibate after having lost your virginity?
Couple of years.. way back when, before.... you know....

4. Have you ever had sex in a car? If yes, since you were a teenager?

Yes, no. The funny part was I had sex in my car in high school. My car was a Chevette. I'm taller than the car is long. Good thing she was short and the hatch back was up....

5. When did you last use food or drink as medication?

Probably last week. A good cheap Little Debbie Zebra Cake can work wonders!

Bonus: Name three words that:

a) get you excited:
-Carolina (NOT USC ... just the Carolinas. I couldn't say SOUTH Carolina or that would have been 2 words)

b) make you squirm:
-the N word

c) make you laugh
-tittie (I'm sorry, I'm childish I know)
-just about any word out of Wanda Sykes mouth

Friday, November 14, 2008

My goofy luck....

After my years in health care I'm still amazed that so many people think that health care is an exact science. They seem to think that practicing medicine is just a bunch of if:then statements (if you feel this, then you prescribe this) and finite solutions. The fact of the matter is that health care is still a huge guessing game and physicians are specially trained guessers who, while that sounds scarily vague, make the best guesses based on human history. The fact of the matter is, they often don't actually know, they just try what is the better of the evils.

Some things are easy. You have a burn. Debride the dead tissue, treat with whatever medication fits the level of burn, and wait. Some things are not so easy. You have a non-specific pain over here that's inhibiting your day to day life and causing your other systems to go out of their normal range. The doctor starts his guessing game with lab tests and imaging to rule out this or that as he or she hones in on what could be the true problem.

Don't get me wrong, and if I have any physicians or fans-o-physicians who are reading, don't get your back up, this is all in support of you. I don't mean to say that you're guessing as it's a bad thing. If medicine were as simple as a long list of if:then statements, then anyone could be a doctor; hell, we could keep the chart on the fridge and just take care of ourselves.

It's always been an annoyance to hear laypeople complain and bitch about hospitals. Think of your local hospital and then think of how many good stories you've heard about it vs. how many bad anecdotes and horror stories you've heard about it. So many of these stories reach my ear and as they're going on, I think through what probably actually happened and realize they're just going on their limited knowledge and painting a bad picture when they think they have the answer. "Well granny had was coughing up blood, they should have just given her a pill and sent her home!" yeah, there's a pill for that.....

I realize that there are malpractice situations out there. There are idiots with an MD after their name that I wouldn't let my hamster go to, but there are 1000 times more car wrecks in a day than there are medical malpractice cases. I think often times people think that because the first thing a doctor tries doesn't work within a 24 hour period, people call quackery. And that's a shame and a detriment to your own health.

My advice is to work WITH your doctor on your own care. You don't have to be a physician to take an active part in your health plan. Know what you have, know why you have it, ask why you need to take this medication or undergo that procedure. Ask AHEAD of time about any side effects and always ask, don't rely on reading alone, if there are food or drug interactions with what you're about to take especially if you see more than one doctor. Heath Ledger (rest his soul) showed us what can happen when one doctor doesn't know what the other is doing. There's one common denominator in all of your health care and that is You. Be proactive and work with your doctor.

Now you may ask, what brought about this medical rant? No clue. I just thought it was funny this morning that while I feel fine, the change in temps here in Chicago is affecting my sinuses. It's settled in my throat and has given me a froggy voice. When I feel like crap, I sound fine. Now I feel fine and I sound like a bad drag queen.

Go figure.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

No Shit Sherlock!

"My wife reminded me that, `hey, as president of the United States, be careful what you say.'''

- George Bush in an interview yesterday

Sometimes people say something so obvious you just want to smack them. This article came after the Obamas went to visit the White House. I know it was all he could do for Obama not to roll his eyes. I bet Michelle had to stifle that "mmm - hmmm" at least 100 times.

Bush Says He Regrets Use of Iraq `Mission Accomplished' Banner

Nov. 12 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush said he regrets the display of the ``Mission Accomplished'' sign as backdrop for a speech he gave about a month after the March 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq.
``To some, it said, well, `Bush thinks the war in Iraq is over,' when I didn't think that,'' he said in a CNN interview today. ``It conveyed the wrong message.''
The sign was hung on the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003, when Bush landed on the carrier wearing a flight suit to declare that major combat operations in Iraq were over. That speech has since served as a rallying point for critics of Bush's policies in Iraq.
Bush also cited other regrets in the CNN interview, which was conducted aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid in New York after a Veterans Day ceremony.
``I regret saying some things I shouldn't have said,'' Bush said. He cited comments he made after the Sept. 11 attacks, when he said of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden: ``I want justice. There's an old poster out West that said, 'Wanted, dead or alive.'''
He also said he regretted telling Iraqi insurgents in 2003: ``There are some who feel like that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is, bring 'em on.''
`Be Careful'
In the interview yesterday, he said, ``My wife reminded me that, `hey, as president of the United States, be careful what you say.'''
Bush, 62, also described his Nov. 10 meeting at the White House with his successor, President-elect Barack Obama, and said he asked former President Bill Clinton for advice on handling the transition.
``It was interesting to watch him go upstairs,'' Bush said of Obama's visit. ``He wanted to see where his little girls were going to sleep. Clearly, this guy is going to bring a sense of family to the White House, and I hope Laura and I did the same thing. But I believe he will, and I know his girls are on his mind and he wants to make sure that first and foremost, he is a good dad.''
Bush said he would return to Texas when he hands over the presidency Jan. 20 and may write a book.
``I want people to know what it was like to make some of the decisions I had to make,'' he said. ``I've had one of those presidencies where I've had to make some tough calls, and I want people to know the truth about what it was like sitting in the Oval Office.''

He's just mad because none of the White House interns wanted to blow him.

RipVanWinkle, move over....

Yesterday was Veteran's Day, or Remembrance Day if you're in Canada or the UK. Working for an association means you usually get these lesser holidays off too. I had planned to use the day working on a few things around the house, going to the grocery store, blah blah blah. Even with all the plans, I did know that I wanted to sleep late. Usually sleeping late for me is 8am. I went to bed around 10pm on Monday night and as I woke up, here's how it played:

Wake up, see that it's light outside, look at clock, 8:15am. Still sleepy so roll back over for a bit more.

Wake up, see that it's light outside, but not bright. Pull aside curtains and see that it's overcast and dreary. Look at clock, 10:00am. OK, one more hour and I'll get up and get started. No big plans, so not in a hurry.

Wake up, see that it's light out, but darker than before. Pull aside curtains expecting to see dark thunder clouds or something and it's just darker. Look at clock, 5:15pm!

NINETEEN HOURS! I slept for 19 hours. Sadly I didn't mean to or want to, but BAM, I nearly slept an entire day! I don't think I've slept that long uninterrupted in my entire life without having just come through surgery of some sort.

Luckily i was able to get to sleep for the most part last night, though I did wake up throughout the night. Too bad God didn't give us a need for a finite amount of sleep. If so I'd be ready for an all nighter at the bars this weekend.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today would have been my mom's 73rd birthday. I have never wanted to remember, or in any way commemorate the day she died, but I'll remember her birthday anyway and will still do a candle in the cupcake for her. I also decided that I'd do something for her on her birthday too. Nothing earth changing, but something that I wouldn't normally do or have been putting off that would be meaningful.

Since Mom's passing, I've been horribly remiss in writing to her sister Jane, however Jane has remembered my birthday and sends Christmas cards. I know, I'm a heel, but Mom and Jane were close so writing her is going to be hard. But today seems like the perfect day!

Happy Birthday Mom!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Another damn book!

Since I moved to Chicago in 2000, I've essentially read more than I've read in my life! If I'd had this ability to read when I was in school. I'd have done better I believe. Ahh, who am I kidding? Harry Potter is still better than Chemistry or Economics.

I did a quick calculation and I've commuted for 6,240 hours in the past 8 years (give or take a couple hundred based on where my job was) That's a LOT of reading. There have been some books I've read for a second time. I just finished reading a funny book, Misadventures in the 213 and am in the middle of Screening Party, both for the 3rd time and both of these books are by Dennis Hensley. Both of these books have been out for years, but they're just as funny the 3rd time around for me. One part I had a big laugh about on the bus yesterday is a part I'd forgotten about. As with many things I post, I hesitate as there might be just a tad bit too much truth in it about me, but then that's what this is about.

Dennis and his roommate take some time to list and define the various types of Fits one can have (tizzy, hissy, etc) Below is an excerpt from Screening Party defining the levels of fits. Yeah, they're me... but they're YOU too!
Tizzy: More of an act of clumsiness than an act of anger, the Tizzy Fit involves the thrower fumbling a physical act, getting frustrated with himself, and then losing control for a spell, resulting in a brief burst of unfocused energy. A Tizzy thrower might call himself a ‘spaz’ or refer to what they just did as ‘spazzing out’. Though tizzies are ultimately harmless, they can be quite entertaining to watch. Witness Beth Howland accidentally hurling straws about the diner in the opening credits of TV’s Alice. A classic TV Land Tizzy.

Hissy: Unlike a Tizzy, the Hissy Fit is brought on because the thrower believes he or she has been wronged. It has elements of a Tizzy, in the it contains physical moments that the thrower cannot control. However, in the case of the Hissy, these movements can often be quite effeminate, which is why a Hissy thrower will never refer to the outburst afterward as a Hissy, though everyone who witnessed it will. Hissy throwers often have an overgrown sense of entitlement. They want what they want when they want it, but they don’t like to get their hands dirty. They’d rather just bitch and twitter. A Hissy thrower is unlikely to ask you to step outside and rumble. They will, however, speak to your manager and have you fired. For several examples of classic Hissies, I suggest you rent the Elton John documentary Tantrums and Tiaras or get a job as a personal assistant for one of the Velvet Mafia.

Conniption: The dictionary defines conniption as “a fit of violent emotion”. Indeed. Though there is a good deal of violence in the Conniption Fit, it is by far the most focused and justified of the fits. The Conniption thrower is not unreasonable, he’s just had enough and he’s not going to take it anymore. He might “blow a gasket” or “rip someone a new one” but he’s usually right and in complete control. Angela Bassett setting her cheating husband’s car on fire in Waiting to Exhale is a conniption, albeit a simmering, tightly wound one.

Shit: Look the fuck out. Shit fit throwers are not just reacting to the perceived injustice of the moment. No, a lifetime of disappointment and rage bubble to the surface as well. The Shit Fit thrower is out of control, dangerous, and probably a little bit crazy. Jack Nicholson smashing someone’s car with a golf club, and the “no more wire hangers” scene in Mommie Dearest would fall under the category of Shit Fit.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I usually check on my favorite blogs twice a day. First thing in the morning before I get started, and while I sit at my desk eating a quick lunch.
(yes, though I swore I never would, I sometimes have to eat at my desk, which I detest)

Once in a while one of my favorite blogs will have a comment from someone who's comment is fun enough that I follow their link and look through their blog. Today while checking out OhNoChrisO I found a HOOT of a blog. it's called Margaret and Helen - Best Friends for 60 years and counting.

These two ladies live in separate states, but blog together after one of their grandsons showed them how. I haven't delved into their blog yet or figured out how long they've been around, but talk about readership. Their blog today already has 129 comments. The one from yesterday has 471! Go see them (below) and read up. We should all be so spry at that age!

Can you feel a BRAND NEW DAY?!?!

It's official!

I couldn't stay up long enough to see the final counts, and honestly, I didn't want to. Once the voting is over or getting toward the west coast being over, it's just pins and needles for me so I stop watching and wait until I wake up the next morning to find out the outcome.

It was a joy to wake up this morning to Channel 5 news this morning and the first three words I heard on Wednesday, November 5, 2008 was "..Obama is President"

I could have stopped there and the day would be perfect!

I wanted to dig up "Brand New Day" from the Wiz on YouTube, but they must have had copyright issues because I can't find anymore. Intent on keeping with the genre of good over evil, I found this... same thing. Witch, Bitch (from Alaska...etc)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday Quickies

Happy Monday everyone!

Is that a contradiction?

Today is a busy day at work, but since I missed posting since last Thursday my guilt of neglect made me decide to throw some quick bits out there.

-It's hard to believe that the country is essentially on hold until tomorrow evening. The election out come seems to mean a whole lot more this time than in the past. In my admittedly limited political knowledge, past elections have come down to feeling the candidates were essentially going to do the same things in office, it was whether or not one was going to cave to the left or the right. This election seems to have candidates that are night and day.

- I think McBush is running scared though. He's desperate and is probably kicking himself for picking the true "that one" as a running mate. The only smart move he seems to have made this entire election was to keep Bush from actively backing him. It is no surprise, though that the first black candidate would endure extra mudslinging. However, while it's no surprise, it's still appalling the lengths and names they go to. Check out SueBob's list (with links) to the names and ideas the GOP has come up with.

- Go Vote... go vote, go vote, go vote. If the thought of more of the same doesn't scare you, really think about what it could be like to have the weather girl turned lipstick pig hockey mom as president. It will happen if they win.

- And on top of all this worry, I am launching our new Webinar series at work today and I'm really nervous. It's the first anything I've ever launched where it's been mine from inception. I'm not presenting, but I'm running the program. I know in my heart it's going to be fine, but my head sure has stage fright! Cross your fingers for me at 2pm Central time.

- Sadly being nervous gives me the munchies and I have no will power. Thank goodness they took away the office Halloween candy. I may have to make a run for a danish....

See you at the polls tomorrow!
There were unforseen glitches with the webinar and we started 20 minutes late. I didn't have a coronary until after everything was over. I would say after it was over that I feel like I gave birth, but a co-worker and mother took me to task on that. So I'll just say I feel like I just passed a kidney stone.... (and if you've passed one, don't take me to task, I'm not in the mood :) )

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Nostalgic (?) smell

Way back when I started this blog I was working at a food research center on the south west side of Chicago. Now that I've been gone for nearly 8 months I find the things I disliked have faded into the mists of memory and I miss some of the folks I used to work with.

This morning I was reminded of one of the things I do not miss about working down there. Our building was originally part of the Corn Products International plant. Corn Products, as it's name implies, is a huge plant that processes corn. That one plant in Summit-Argo is responsible for around 90% of the world's high fructose corn syrup. (If you've got a bragging point, stick with it!)
Because it works around the clock, non-stop, it often looked like the pic below. (note that it's winter in this pic so the stacks look even more productive)

Because of the round the clock production, the area always smelled like the processed corn it worked with. The closest thing I could compare it to was that the area always smelled like a chicken coop. Except for the days when they were cleaning then it smelled like bad bleach in a chicken coop.

This morning as I got off the train at Harlem, that smell, albeit faint, was waiting for me. Because I have such a strong sense of smell, often I find that a familiar smell will be a strong trigger to memories. Stepping off the train was like stepping off the 63W in Summit and being battered in the nose by chicken feed stank. I always wondered how people lived down there, but I'm sure you get used to it. When I lived in Charleston SC, if it was humid (which it usually was) and the wind was right, you could smell the paper mills and you got used to it. But this smell is there... always...

But I miss the folks I used to work with. If you're still reading, miss you - but not the smell.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

And it's tasty too!

One of my co-workers grew up and still lives on the west side of Chicago. A few weeks ago we were all talking about different tastes and what some people would think would be odd, we liked. She told us that she'd grown up taking a full dill pickle, biting off the top and shoving a peppermint stick into the pickle. After the laughing died off, she was still swearing by it and threatened to bring them in to work one day for us to sample.

Today was the day. Unfortunately she wasn't able to get a dill pickle and brought in one sour pickle and one hot/spicy pickle. Not a good way to try to convince the skeptical folks. It was, obviously, nasty and the face Lucy is making above doesn't come close to what I did. But I told my coworker that I'd still hold out judgement until I could taste it with a dill pickle the way she intended. I went downstairs to grab some chips for lunch and noticed they had dill pickle slices for their deli board and asked for one. I tried it with some peppermint chunks and have to say.. not an entirely terrible taste. I couldn't finish an entire pickle, but I can appreciate it would be a good taste if you were used to it.

This led me to think about what other odd tastes are out there that we might like, but know others may make a face about. Share here and let me know. Here are some to start:

- dip Wendy's fries in a Wendy's Frosty
- cold hot dog wiener with peanut butter (only one per year)

Skeletons in the closet

No, not talking about Gay Halloween either (get it? :) LOL)

This morning I've been chatting with cb and out of the blue he asks me what I think about Xanadu the movie.

I can't lie... I love it. It's cheesy 80's ilk, but I love it.

I can still quote lines from it left and right, and while I'm making fun of the moves, I can probably (if forced) dance along with the skating Xanadu finale number at the end.

It was Olivia Newton-John at her leg warmer wearing finest! The music was, I think, a great transition from what was starting to wane about the 70's but starting to come into music fashion for the 80's.

If you've not seen the movie... go ahead, you know you want to. If you can't wait to rip on the movie, I ask you to ask yourself one question first. Did you like Grease 2? If you did... you better NOT be mean to Xanadu....
XANADU..... XANADUUUUUU... In Xanadu... now that I'm here, now that you're near... In Xanadu.

See, told you.. Skeleton in the closet.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

And the winter begins.....

I woke up this morning and the news said the temp was 31 and the slight wind chill took it into the high 20's.


I'm sure this chill isn't here to stay, but honestly... It was up in the 70's just a few days ago wasn't it?

I know, I know... I choose to live here. And there's plenty to offset the cold.

But still...

Monday, October 27, 2008

ahhhh Monday....

After a self imposed clear liquid diet over the weekend and not getting off the couch except to refill the liquid, get rid of the liquid or shower once.... I am feeling much more myself!

With all the sleeping I did this weekend you'd think I'd be set for sleep for the next few weeks. But if I put my head down on my desk, I'd fall asleep within minutes!

Now I need to go back through the work I did on Friday and make sure I didn't do anything wrong in my ick state...

God Bless Ginger Ale and Saltines!

Meanwhile, enjoy my new little fun toy of useless knowledge!

Friday, October 24, 2008

I'm never eating again....

I have to give up solid food forever. If the risk is having to put up with the rare case of eating something poorly cooked, that would be OK I guess. But twice in two weeks? I can't take it anymore! UGH! If you know me personally, you know what a whiney-ass I can be when I don't feel well (no comments beyond that folks... ) so you can imagine what an absolute joy I would be to be around right now.

I just finished a conference in New Orleans that went from Sunday to Saturday. On or around Tuesday, I ate something that must have had year old, bacteria infested vulture poop in it because it hit me and it hit me hard. I still had to continue with the conference, and it was hell having to run around a convention center feeling like that and still having to keep the perma-smile on for attendees.

Then, just a week after getting back from New Orleans I had a sandwich from the deli downstairs where I work that had chicken in it that maybe wasn't cooked through, or had also been cut and processed by the Vulture Poop Meat Packing Company.

Having these two episodes brought about some observations (and not ALL are from experience):

- When you move into the convention center, learn where all the bathrooms are and plan your room sets and sign changes keeping them in mind

- What is it about me, walking fast, fists clenched, sweat on my brow and pale as a ghost making a bee line for the bathroom that makes you think "Hey, now looks like a perfect time to stop him and ask that inane question that's been bothering me for 2 years..."

- Keep that little bathroom trashcan within arms reach of your toilet. If the problem is coming out of both ends, no matter WHAT choice you make, you're cleaning up the losing vote. And if you're taking care of the back end and suddenly find you need to stand up to get that little trashcan to take care of the top end... that doesn't mean the back end is going to stop doing it's thing while you make a stage set change.

- Don't watch Surgery Channel... Period

- Your idea of bland food and a hotel in a city known for spicy Cajun food's idea of bland are ENTIRELY different.... Stick with oatmeal, hold the hot sauce please.

I'm back at work today and feel a little better, but it's coming up on lunchtime. I'm a little bit hungry, but each time I think about what I can eat the choice is followed up with "what's that going to look like if I have to see it again soon?" I think I'll stick to the protein shake and a banana for right now.

One last, completely unrelated bit for fun. I saw this over at Down the Rabbit Hole and had to borrow it. Thanks Bunny!

I really really hope he wins. The alternative makes me want to reach for the little bathroom trash can....

Monday, October 20, 2008