Sunday, December 31, 2006

Just another memorable family moment...

It isn't as if I was looking forward to researching Medicare part B and D to get more information for my grandmother. I do these things cause I love her and because I felt I needed to be a dutiful granddaughter. Dad doesn't have the patience at times and mom doesn't have the time. Who else can maintain their head and do these things? Me. So when grams tells me that she can barely afford to pay the bimonthly premium of her Part B-supplemental insurance, the part that pays the 20% that her Part B doesn't pay, well it's up to me to figure out a new plan.

After having spent much time researching, and let me just say the government does NOT make it easy to research information on Medicare, I had to rely on non-profit private websites for my information, these sites are designed to help people maneuver through the muck the government throws out there for us to try and understand.

After all is said and done, after I did all that work, grams says "well I meant to tell you but I'm going to keep my supplemental and just keep paying the premiums".

Thanks for telling me! No, I'm not mad at her but if she had to go through what I went through to try and understand that stuff she'd understand why I wanted to pull my hair out. But see it's family and that's what you do, you pull your hair out when they drive you crazy. Family is allowed to do that to each other occasionally and in my family it's expected. It's kind of like if we go long periods of time without someone annoying someone else, it just isn't normal. And so I was annoyed and I'm better now.

At least I got a good lesson on Medicare. My parents turn 65 in five years, and I sure as hell will need to know all about it!

Oh yes and can I add something?

Folks, if someone close to you goes through a lot of hard work to prepare a delicious meal and well it is damn delicious but you don't care for parmesan cheese in your lasagna, could you not insult the cook by saying "oh it's good" and then add a "but I don't really care for the parmesan cheese" and not just mention it once but a half dozen times casually during the meal.

Not only is it insulting but it's rude, even if it is family to whom you are saying it. What makes it difficult is when it's someone you love dearly who makes the comment. I mean on one hand you don't want to offend the person, say it's a parent, you don't want to offend them by saying something and on the other hand you don't want to let it go because well, frankly, it's not right to do stuff like that.

In my family, my sister and my dad know how to tell it like it is. My mom and I are sometimes a little too easygoing although those who know us best know we have a side to us that lets loose occasionally. I can let loose at work but with my family, it's much more difficult. I wouldn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, especially a member of my family who I care about.

When I first heard the remark at the table today I nearly choked on what would have been "what the f*ck?" if the remark hadn't been made by my grandmother, a wonderful, dear woman who at times can be very critical. I sometimes wonder if she knows she's doing it. You won't find a better grandmother, she's a real great person. But even really great, wonderful grandmothers can say and do things you don't agree with. Today I didn't say a word to grams about it but instead I complimented the cook cause oh HOT DAMN it was a great lasagna!

And in closing I just wanna give a big old Sicilian/Italian mamma-mia shout out to my awesome mamasita who cooked up yet another FANTASTIC friggin lasagna today. Oh and hey--I LOVED THE PARMESAN CHEESE!

Oh Lordy what did I get myself into?

Did you ever get this great idea for a project you've been meaning to do for awhile but have been putting off because you know it's long and drawn out? Well I have been meaning to rescan a ton of old photos my mom has and put them in albums instead of the boxes they've been in for years. Well this weekend, DH bought me ten albums at Hobby Lobby in Ocala and I filled all of them nearly completely with just photos of MINE. I have to get ten more of these acid and lignin free albums so I can put mom and dad's photos in it. Well I go to mom and dad's house today thinking I'd get a few albums. My mother comes out with a BOX of photos, a big box too. And that isn't all, there's MORE that I didn't even bring home.

I got them home and separated them into envelopes. All the "people" photos are separated by year and all the landscape, house, pet and car photos are separated by the content. I had about twenty envelopes when I was done. They will all be in albums but only the pet, people, and some of the landscape photos will be scanned. Eventually my hope is to have all the photos on a DVD and send to relatives but the original albums will be with mom and dad. Our photos in this family range from the 1880's to the current day. There are tons of them. Someone ahs to make sense of them, that'd be me. Dad asks me "so what's going to happen to these when we all die?" and I said "I have no idea". Honestly maybe we can donate them to some museum so they can see how the dysfunctional ones live I don't know. But hey, it's easier to share them if they are in albums. I found negatives today from the 1950's. There's a treasure of photos in these piles!!

As I spread the photos out tonight they were everywhere and I said OMG what the f*ck did I get myself into. DH laughs at me. But he understands see because he is re-archiving all his old stamps and coins and it has taken him a week just to take all the stamps out of their old albums. Right now our dining table is covered in stamps from all over the world, many very old and rare, and I am wondering when he'll finish it so we can get our table back!

Anyway wish me luck. Now I have to get the rest of the old photos from mom, scan and put them in albums and be done. I am getting ten more albums, each one holds 200, do ya think we have 2000 photos? Oh hell yeah!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

My wishes for the New Year...

My wishes for the New Year in no particular order:

1) Get through 18 more hours of coursework with A's...ok nothing lower than a B+.
2) My loved ones stick around for another year and are healthy and happy.
3) My sis finds a new and great job and gets good health insurance.
4) DH and my family make amends.
5) I hit my goal weight.
6) Peace, love and happiness for me, my family, friends, coworkers and even those I don't know.
7) A resurgence of Americans taking interest in changing politics for the better.
8) Get out of Iraq
9) To wake up alive December 31, 2007 so I can enjoy another great year of my life.

Notice there's nothing about money. Why? Because my happiness isn't tied to money anymore, it's not tied to paying off debt, it's tied to the quality of my life.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Makes no difference to me...

I wish I could tell you that the death of Saddam Hussein makes me happy. Frankly I don't feel anything one way or the other. Isn't that interesting? That's because there's a lot more important things going on in the world. You wouldn't know it though with the coverage of the deaths of Gerald Ford, James Brown and now Saddam Hussein. I can guarantee you that tomorrow's news shows will be FULL of Saddam this and Saddam that. And before you know it, the video of his hanging will be on youtube.com.

No thanks.

DH and I like to know what's going on in the world but there's such a thing as overkill and it's one reason we don't watch the news much these days. The media seems to define these days what's important to know and what isn't and we are at their mercy. And so many news broadcasts have turned into opinion and entertainment shows, we just hate it. The only way we know what is going on is when they tell us, after all we can't be in all places at all times right? Think of the control they have over us. They control the information. Scary eh? Anyway this isn't a rant about that, this is just my opinion--that I just could care less about Saddam. We have a lot of problems in this country and the world that need attention. It's time we get down to it. Problem is before you know it, it'll be time to run for President and then everything for months is going to be about that. And oh my GOD that will be such overkill. Yes that's democracy in action but still.....so annoying ya know?

Ahh but this too shall pass...and the media will focus on yet something else for a few months till it gets old and they move on.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

If my thoughts seem strange, I take after my mother...

Leave it to mom to go forth with the whole Soylent Green thing (see my Christmas Eve post) and then worse, she actually found internet-based business with the name Soylent Green Biscuit Company, whose motto is:

"Forty million New Yorkers can't be wrong . . .
They can however taste like crap"

Thanks ma for finding that, it's a hoot! This is the year 2006, we only have 17 more years till 2023 when supposedly the world will run out of food and we begin processing our dearly departed into 3 x 3 squares of nourishment. YUM YUM. I wonder if you can freeze them?

Now you might ask "you would have only been 4 years old in 1973, how could you know about such a movie?"

Glad you asked. That's because my parents are baby boomers and from a generation that wasn't scared to let their kids watch a movie. See back then kids weren't overly sheltered and we didn't become axe murderers simply by watching a horror movie. Now of course it doesn't mean the innocent impressionable young minds didn't get an occasional scare while walking through the house alone after having watched the part of Salem's Lot where the little dead boy floats by the window. But it didn't kill me--er--I mean the poor impressionable young girl subject to the torment LOL. But then this young girl was also the same one who for years refused to go near a built in swimming pool because she believed there were sharks in there. Yes I know I was strange (duh you knew it was me right?), but really I'm sure I got that from SOMEONE in our family, just who I don't know! Oh yes, did I forget to mention my parents let us watch Jaws when we were kids? (Hey I still won't swim in the ocean ok?)

Alas, it's the truth....my parents let us kids watch Soylent Green and a host of other movies like Carrie, Burnt Offerings, The Omen, The Exorcist, The Haunting of Hell House, and other wildly graphic horror movies. See back then kids didn't go off the deep end become axe murderers and other sorted characters simply because they watched a certain movie.

And hey while we're at it, back in the mid to late 70's my folks would drop us off at the movies for an afternoon UNESCORTED and yes we actually went inside and watched the movie, we didn't loiter, panhandle, ride our skateboards in front of the theatre or snap gum while talking loudly on our cell phones. We went inside and watched the movie ourselves and later my mom would pick us up.

Oh my God where is Child Protective Services? That's what's wrong with me. I CAN blame it on my parents. They left us with babysitters once a month if that so they could go out, they dropped us at the movies by ourselves and every now and then let us go skating or bowling alone so we could have some fun. They even let us ride our bikes alone, and OMG, they encouraged us to go out into the street and play with our friends.

Did I mention that my parents even let us watch---------MTV? Yeah Cyndi Lauper videos can do so much harm!

HELP! Someone call CPS!!!! I WANNA SUE!!!

And so with all the horror movies, occasional MTV, going places by ourselves, and being encouraged to go outside and play with our friends, neither of the three of us became alcoholics, drug addicts, prostitutes, or serial killers.

Now what the heck was I talking about? Oh yeah Soylent Green. Yes, Soylent Green is people--grade A prime people too. I am sure that in processing the dead humans for food, only the large, somewhat healthy, meaty ones are chosen so that's good. So while you're out buying your DNA manipulated produce and your cloned cow flesh, if you come across some little squares of protein new to the meat aisle, you'll know what it is. Don't be afraid, it could be someone you once knew!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

No cloned beef for me thank you...

All I can say is this---I want to know what's in my food and where it comes from. I want to know if I am buying beef, pork, and other products made from cloned animals. I can't believe the government thinks that we the consumers don't have a right to know that.

Gee who is buying who off here? Cause someone is getting a payback for this one.

I don't believe in cloning animals or humans for many reasons. It's bad enough they are manipulating the DNA of crop producing plants. Take a simple biology class and you'll find out what harm can be done just by that. And we should buy there's no harm in eating the meat of a cloned animal?

By the way, do animals have souls? Just a thought. I believe all living things have souls. What about cloned animals? Do they have souls too? No, you can't clone a soul.

What's the brain of a cloned animal like? Do they inherit the exact same instincts?

All food for thought folks. Maybe it's just too damn sci-fi for me, but something stinks about the whole cloning business. I would say I'd give up meat altogether since now I will have no idea what I am buying but shit, even being a strict vegetarian isn't even safe anymore. What's a person to do?

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

"Not in line with my beliefs"

This post is going to sting a bit so mom, dad, be aware. No it's not about you...but when you read it, you will be surprised I am being so bold (or maybe not!)

Ok, I read the book "The Five People You Meet in Heaven" (by Mitch Albom who also did "Tuesdays with Morrie") and I thought it was a great book. The simple message it sends is that we each make a significant impact on others, even people we don't know or have never met. It sends the message that our lives have meaning even when we think they don't.

I asked my mom, aunt and grandmother to read it, they enjoy reading and they have all endured stress lately and I thought they would enjoy it. I gave it to my aunt first. I prefaced giving her the book with "it's not a religious thing" it's just an inspiring book that helps us understand how important we are to others and the impact we have even when we don't mean to.

In a nutshell it's about an 83 year old guy named Eddie, a carnival ride maintenance guy who dies in an accident attempting to save a little girl from a falling ride. Throughout much of his life Eddie has felt he missed out on life itself. While alive, his life is mundane and boring, he thinks his life is meaningless and he goes about his day unemotional, with little expression, and even less joy. Then he dies and meets five people who I won't mention (go read the book!) are made up of a few who were once very close to him, a few just "known" and a few not known at all. They make Eddie sense of the life he lived on this earth, helped him forgive others and himself (which he could not do in his life). And in the end, Eddie is in Heaven and awaits the time when he will be one of five people to guide someone special and help them make sense of the life in which they lived, so they can move on to Heaven. And so the cycle is perpetuated.

The book was written by Mitch Albom and dedicated to his Uncle Eddie who while in the hospital one time awoke to see five people sitting in front of him, all people he had known in his past, I suppose he felt they were there to tell him something. Anyway that was Mitch's idea for the book.

Isn't that inspirational? It wasn't indecent, preachy, and talked nothing of religion, nothing of accepting Jesus, being Jewish, Muslim or anything else. It just talked of something simple....it teaches those of us who are alive that we ALL make a difference, not just to the people closest to us, the people we have contact with every day, but the people who we don't know and have never met. Our existence IS important....our lives have meaning.

Well today I get a call from my Aunt, a devout Christian, married to my uncle, who is also devout. I didn't get to the phone in time and she left me a phone message. I am very disappointed in her right now. I love her but am disappointed at the message she left. She said she began reading the book but decided to flip through it and found it was not in line with what she believes in.

I know she'd be furious at me if she knew I wrote this but I don't care. She will never see this anyway but I have to tell you that I was really upset when I heard her message. I find it very offensive that she decided it wasn't in line with her beliefs. The book wasn't profane, it didn't mock Jesus, it didn't mock ANY religion, it didn't mock anything good and moral. It wasn't for or against religion, in fact I don't believe religion is the issue of the book.

The book was simple---five people Eddie met in Heaven who helped explain what his earthly life meant and how he made a difference. Did Eddie meet Jesus Christ? I DON'T KNOW! Because that wasn't an issue, it wasn't the focus of the book.

So please someone tell me how this could OFFEND a Christian? I'm waiting.

I am in awe that my aunt could be so close-minded in her older and wiser days. Now don't get me wrong, she's a wonderful woman I love dearly, we all do, but surely of all the books she's ever read besides the Bible, she would find this somewhat inspirational, no? Oh sure she has the right to read what she wants and this isn't it. This is an inspirational book but it doesn't talk about Jesus, morality or being saved.

And so perhaps that's the problem with it, eh?

Rant over.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

"Soylent Green is people" and other Christmas musings...

Ahh remember in a recent post I talked of my secret dream of becoming a stand-up and having much material to choose from.

Well I was right, even more than I know.

Tonight's Christmas Eve celebration came and went. The biggest surprise is that I didn't stick to my commitment of watching "A Christmas Story" for 24 hours straight. I mean it's one thing if it would have broken some kind of record and I would have been invited on Fox and Friends but other than that well frankly it would just have been moronic. I mean, I know nearly every line as it is to the point where many times at work I find myself saying "ohhhhhhh fuuuuuuudge" if you know what I mean. The "F" word is as much a part of my vocabulary as "Sons of Bitches...Bumpuses" was to little Ralphie's father...

It was relatively uneventful except for the Christmas Eve dinner at my aunt and uncle's house. This is my mom's sister and brother-in-law. Nice people, I've known my aunt all my life, she's a great person. My uncle is her second husband and they have been married to her for some 21 years now and they live nearby. It's nice for mom because she has her mother next door and her only sister down the road. What could be better?

Lots of rum or in my case butterscotch schnapps for my egg nog. Ok so I'm a lightweight but it does the trick in a pinch!

I went to dinner myself and left DH at home, he preferred it that way and it didn't bother me. Grams was on her best behavior....or was it the Cap'n Morgan? One will never know. Hey there's no law that says you can't drink rum at age 89, actually imagine how many happy holiday dinners there are around the world because of rum.

We all had special assigned seating. I thought to myself "is she kidding" when my aunt was specific that I sit between my mom and grams. I mean hey nothing wrong with that cause after all it gave me a great view across the table of my sister who I had hoped would not want to eat just so mom could coax her into the "mommy's little piggy" scene being that we had mashed potatoes with our dinner and well she's the youngest of my siblings, it's only fitting. Several times the moment was ripe for it but it never happened. Must work on that for next year. I mean wouldn't it be hilarious if my sister or me just dug our face into our potatoes and snorted like a pig.

Well?

People are always telling me to be more spontaneous, what a great start. I mean it would leave people talking for years wouldn't it.

We talked a lot at the table, I mentioned that Dh and I were going to see Rocky VI on Christmas Day and then my uncle talks of a movie he saw a while back in which the main character was on the planet Mars and walking through the movie district and there was a sign on the matinee that said Rocky 41. My grandmother kept asking "who went to Mars?" Well I kid you not on this but the entire family spent thirty minutes trying to figure out which movie it is. And sure enough grams was just still wanting to know "who went to Mars?"

My uncle insisted it was Back to the Future and Dad insisted it was something else. We kept trying to figure out which movie and which actor was in it and we got so far off the topic most of us forgot why w were wondering about it in the first place. Eventually it turned out to be the movie "Total Recall"with Arnold Schwarzenegger. What I want to know is how that conversation led us to discussion about "Deliverance" and "Soylent Green?"

In the end, grams asked us again "can someone tell me who went to Mars?"

Ok anyone who lived through the 60's and early 70's HAS to know about Soylent Green right? Well anytime the moment arises where the movie is mentioned I just throw my hand up in the air and pull a Chuckie Heston by screaming "SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!" and everyone around begins laughing--that is if they know what I'm talking about. Of course if they don't know what I am talking about they think I'm a lunatic. I'd love to shout it one day in a restaurant, preferable a French restaurant where they serve a lot of shit that you dont' know what it is, usually it's animal parts or something. Just out of the blue I'd scream "SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE."

People are always encouraging me to be spontaneous....this would be a great start.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, look it up. All I can say is that if there's ever a serious world food shortage and your dead loved ones start disappearing, just take notice of the small white squares the government is handing out to you for nutrition.......

And then there was the movie Deliverance. I don't remember how talk turned to that movie but if there's one thing you just don't do is talk of Deliverance at the dinner table. I am quite certain that nearly every person in my immediate family has met at least one person who could have played an extra in that movie.

Of course the talk went downhill after that, we discussed the movie Hostel, which I could still slap my husband for getting on Pay Per View because it SUCKED royally. And then since my cousin saw it, he and I were explaining the plot to everyone and well let's just say that my uncle started to get sick to his stomach. I think it happened when we talked about the people chained in chairs and getting drills stuck through their heads for fun. I suppose you could say that using drills, chainsaws, axes and other tools to do slight damage to people for fun is pretty sick. I'm not sure at what point my uncle began to get disgusted, but we were going on a good ten minutes about it till he was like "enough".

Best part of the dinner besides the food and company was the once-a-year annoying pain in the ass topic of the day. Yep, you can blame me for it. We were talking about reality shows and how most of us don't watch them but I told them I had this insanity for "The Simple Life" and that I had actually sat down and watched several episodes of "Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders: Making the Team". Now at first it seems corny I mean let's face it, I have my doubts about any woman whose lifelong ambition is to be a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader (I feel the same about the Miss America too if that makes you feel better about me!) but like a bad train wreck I was just drawn to it. Originally I wanted to see if it was the most gorgeous girls who made the team. Yes they are pretty and they have to fit into the uniform because as I kept hearing on the show "the uniform is unforgiving", there's only 35 spots and not all the pretty girls are going to get picked. Well, I had watched many episodes and I had no idea the rigorous training these women had to go through. I mean it's more than athletics, you have to know how to dance and be poised and athletic and frankly most women could not do it. Sure looks play a part but if you are gorgeous and a size 2, and you can't dance, can't put on a spontaneous choreographed routine, can't meet the rigorous athletic requirements, then you aren't going to make the team. Well lots of great women were cut from the final group. Hey they can only take 35 right? So not everyone's going to make it. Well my uncle started in about why I feel sorry for the ones who don't make it. I tried (note the word TRIED) explaining to him that I'd feel for anyone that tried really hard to obtain their goal and didn't make it, whether it be using their brains or using their athletic ability. He started comparing the cheerleaders competitions to when he worked for the phone company. And I said "ok fine, if they had a reality show about people competing to work for the phone company and someone just tried so hard and didn't make it, if I could see their hard work and determination sure I'd feel bad for them".

He wasn't getting it. He kept talking about it being "their choice" and that he doesn't feel sorry for them. I don't feel sorry for them either, but I saw the rigorous training they went through and I had a new respect for it. Granted it pissed me off that one of the best girls trying out was told she had to lose weight when clearly she was thin and in great physical shape.

What my uncle wasn't getting, and not because he didn't understand but because he didn't WANT to understand, was that it took real talent and athletic ability to make the team. Sure you can be in great shape and be gorgeous but if you can't do the dancing and the athletic stuff, you can't be a DCC. Thank God my cousin backed me up because he and his wife got it and they even watched the show too. Man you have to be super in shape and athletic to be competitive for the team, like I said most women couldn't do it. So kudos to those who make the final cut. And then my uncle calls them bimbos. Oy vey, he's so friggin judgmental of people. We explained that many of these women, at least most of them have FULL time jobs or are students. Being a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader doesn't pay enough to live on, it's like what--$100 per game? And every year the veterans have to compete for spots against the newcomers so just because you got it one year doesn't mean you will be around the next year.

It was like talking to a brick wall. I don't know how mom stayed quiet during that whole conversation. I don't know how my auntie felt but I know that my sister, my cousin and his wife agreed with me. I sat there rationally trying to have a conversation with my uncle, and trying to see his point of view but he refused to see mine. And while I like the guy, what irritates me is when I make an effort to see someone else's point of view and they insist I'm wrong or they sit there and insist their point of view is the only one that matters.

I even said "hey I can respect your opinion on this, we can agree to disagree" and he didn't even reciprocate, he made some face and grunted. I fully expected him to say the same thing but the thing with him is that he can't admit that there's another side to an issue, he has not the ability to say that maybe, just maybe there's a perspective different from his own. If he thinks that shows weakness, he is wrong. I think admitting there's another point of view takes great strength. I hope he finds it. I did find that his lack of extending me the same courtesy I gave him in disagreeing BUT respecting his opinion, leads me to believe he doesn't respect my opinion.

Regardless, I let it go because, like the song says, you gotta know when to hold 'em and know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away, know when to run. I walked away from this one, unscathed because I didn't let his righteous attitude overpower me. See he would have overpowered me and won if I would have given in to his negavitity, his sarcasm, his criticism of others. But I didn't. I walked away completely in tact and unscarred. There was no battle, no need for one. Life is too damned short for me to waste my time trying to convince righteous judgmental people of their shortcomings. I have enough of my own that I deal with, forget trying to help others deal with theirs!

Nonetheless it was a fun day, it really was! I got to spend time with family and eat a great meal and have some good laughs. And when I left, I felt I had thoroughly enjoyed my day.

The end...

Thursday, December 21, 2006

My secret life...

Stand-up comedian!

I would love to be able to stand in front of an audience and make them laugh. My comedy would be a combination of Ermba Bombeck, Bill Cosby, and Ray Romano---all clean, no profanity, and completely based on my experiences in this life.

What a hoot that would be. And if ANYONE ever had quality material, I certainly do!

It's here, it's here!!

"Rocky Balboa" aka "Rocky VI"

Sylvester Stallone is in a class of his own. While I think Rocky I and II were his best Rocky performances, I LOVED him in the movie "Oscar" a comedy directed by none other than John Landis and co-starring Marisa Tomei, Vincent Spano, Peter Reigert, Chazz Palminteri, Don Ameche, Yvonne DeCarlo, Richard Romanus, Ken Howard, Kirk Douglas, Tim Curry and Linda Gray. In that movie Sly plays Angelo "Snaps" Provolone who makes his dying father (Kirk Douglas) a promise on his deathbed that he would leave the gangster business and go straight. He tries to keep his promise but winds up in the middle of one big mess. It's hilarious, I love this movie. I think Sly is great at comedy! He should do more of it.

Anyway, you gotta love the guy. He's 60 years old and still doing action films. I say as long as he can do it, go for it. Not bad for the guy once voted by his classmates at age 15 as "most likely to end up in the electric chair."

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rosie O'Donnell stinks...

Ooook one of those great benefits of taking some time off work is being able to catch up on shows you enjoy watching on TV. One of those is NOT "The View". So why, WHY did I watch the episode with Hillary Clinton? And why did I actually sit there and listen to that stupid twit Rosie O'Donnell bashing Donald Trump?

Her bashing of Donald Trump was uncalled for and rude. Now in all fairness, I don't think the Donald's response was appropriate. If you're going to attack someone, you don't attack their looks. Calling Rosie fat and talking about sending someone over to steal her girlfriend because it wouldn't be that hard, was just stupid, childish and wrong. As wrong as it was for Rosie, the dumb twit, to come out making fun of Donald's hair, and chastise him for his failed marriages.

She said HE was trying to be the moral compass by giving Miss USA, who is on his show "The Apprentice" a second chance after her big personal scandal recently. He didn't fire her, he gave her a chance. That says something about him. Perhaps he sees potential in her, real potential to be successful and he doesn't want one mistake to throw that all away for her.

But no. Instead of complimenting the guy for giving someone a chance (which he's NOT known for), she chastises him by bringing up his past marriages and balking that he's trying to be a "moral compass".

See let me tell you why I can't stand Rosie. It has nothing to do with her being a lesbian, despite the fact that it seems EVERYTHING in her Rosie-world has to do with her being a lesbian. She uses that as an excuse to be rude to people. She isn't even funny anymore. She's rude and she's mean, very mean. She needs some therapy to figure out who she is really angry at....because so far I've seen her attack a lot of people and she was cruel, really cruel. I think her attack on Tom Selleck threw me over the edge years ago.

GET OVER YOURSELF ROSIE...It's no wonder so many people who used to like you (like me)
can't stand you now!!!

Wanting to be with someone of the same gender doesn't define a person any more than wanting to be with someone of the opposite gender. Your preference for gender in a partner does NOT define you. What defines you is your character, how you treat other people, and what good things you do for the world around you. In the end, that's what Rosie will be judged on. If she raises good kids, if she's generous and kind and caring to all people, that's how she will be judged. But this petty crapfest she participates in will get her nowhere but hated even more.

She prides herself in not caring what people think about her, she's happy with who she is. Well Rosie, if you can live with yourself being a crude bitch, hey more power to you.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Gay, Straight or Taken?

Been there done that. Dated gay guys, straight guys and guys who were taken. Gee, I found that the gay guys were the most decent and most fun to be with most of the time.

Anyway, seeing the ads for this new show is when I figured reality TV hit a new low, which frankly I thought wasn't possible but it is. I mean the Nick and Jessica thing just had me wanting to barf my insides out but this? Worse! Although some sick twisted insane part of me LOVES "The Simple Life", I am not a reality TV junkie in fact other than TSL I don't watch reality TV at all. Ok I did watch a few episodes of "Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders: Making the Team" and while I'll admit I have a new respect for the rigorous training those girls go through I think I had enough after two episodes when a perfectly thin girl was harassed by the trainers because she looked too fat in her photos. Fat? OMG are you kidding me? The girl was thin and gorgeous! But as they say "the uniform is not forgiving" yeah whatever. I'd be saying to that head chick who makes all the decisions "screw you bitch, I'm going home to eat a box of ho ho's" but no instead the girls take the abuse. They were lost they day they decided that their lifelong dream was to be a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. Really now? Isn't it something how they could shoot for such a high goal? Their mothers must certainly be proud.

Such a focus on being thin and gorgeous. Listen, the average woman isn't a size TWO and she doesn't have time to perfect her makeup and hair and workout three hours a day (Oprah!).

Ok back to my original post, is it really necessary to have a reality show where a girl has to date three men and figure out which one is gay, which one is straight and which one is taken? I mean is there NOTHING else on which to base another reality show? How about a show about a woman in her late thirties who is trying to balance being mildly depressed, working full-time, trying to pay off ebt, worries about getting too old to have kids, endures marriage to a man who has more mood swings than a woman in PMS, worries about her aging parents, her gay sister, her brother who never seems to call or come around unless he wants something, her grandmother who is always right no matter what, two cats who can't get along, going to school part-time, neighbors who crank up the square dancing music every night at 7 pm, and oh yeah---is on weight watchers and desperately trying to lose another 45 pounds without losing her mind.

I'm sorry, did I miss anything? Where's my friggin reality show?

Listen if you want reality, oh I have it. I could fill volumes with the reality I could give you. Of course there's no "shock and awe" in my reality, just the same old bullshit day after day. But it's my bullshit and it's my reality. These reality show producers make you think that their characters are real but they're not. How about this for reality? "Unscripted Jess" that's it. You come into my house with a camera, no cue cards, no makeup, no bra, holy shorts, yeah those producers would spend one day in my crazy ass household, be it here or at a family gathering and they'd be running for cover begging for Nick and Jessica to come back. That's right baby cause MY life is a real reality show. It doesn't get any better than this. My life will make that gay, straight or taken crap look like a campfire girls weenie roast.

Ok so without watching who wants to be on which loser the dumb girl will wind up with?

Monday, December 18, 2006

Another fine example of literacy...


Another fine example of signage at a higher level educational institution. You would think that one whose job it is to create signs would at least double-check their work, ya think?

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Mommy's little piggy...you'll shoot your eye out kid...

"My little brother had not eaten voluntarily in over three years. "

"You'll shoot your eye out kid"

"Oh my god, I shot my eye out! "

"I have since heard of people under extreme duress speaking in strange tongues. I became conscious that a steady torrent of obscenities and swearing of all kinds was pouring out of me as I screamed. "

"Ohhhhh fuuuuuuuudddddggggge."

"Only I didn't say "Fudge." I said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the "F-dash-dash-dash" word! "

"Now, I had heard that word at least ten times a day from my old man. He worked in profanity the way other artists might work in oils or clay. It was his true medium; a master. But, I chickened out and said the first name that came to mind. "


"Sons of bitches! Bumpuses! "

"All right, I'll get that kid to eat. Where's my screw driver and my plumber's helper? I'll open up his mouth and I'll shove it in. "

"My old man's spare tires were only actually tires in the academic sense. They were round and had once been made of rubber. "

"NOW it was serious. A double-dog-dare. What else was there but a "triple dare ya"? And then, the coup de grace of all dares, the sinister triple-dog-dare. "

"He looks like a deranged Easter Bunny."


"Aunt Clara had for years not only perpetually labored under the delusion that I was 4 years old, but also a girl."

"Over the years I got to be quite a connossieur of soap. Though my personal preference was for Lux, I found that Palmolive had a nice, piquant after-dinner flavor - heavy, but with a touch of mellow smoothness. Life Buoy, on the other hand... YECCHH! "

"Be sure to drink your Ovaltine. Ovaltine? A crummy commercial? Son of a bitch!"

"Some men are Baptists, others Catholics, my father was an Oldsmobile man. "

Goodbye Mr. Chips...

I enjoy classic old films and Turner Classic Movies outdid itself today with some really awesome films. The film du jour was "Goodbye Mr. Chips" from 1939 with Robert Donat and Greer Garson. Mr. Chips is a somewhat shy, socially awkward man who begins teaching at the prestigious Brookfield School outside London in the 1870's. For much of his life doesn't realize the tremendous positive impact he has on his boys. Early in his career, he attempts to bond with his new young students when he is reprimanded by the strict conservative old fashioned headmaster who believes in strict discipline and the idea that humor and fun have no place at the school.

While on vacation with a friend, Mr. Chips meets a young woman, Katherine Ellis, a young, charming and vivacious woman who teaches him how to have fun and changes his life. They get married shortly after they meet and his demeanor changes, he lightens up and defies the administration by becoming friendly with the students and gaining their trust.

Mr. and Mrs. Chips are highly regarded by the teachers and most importantly their students. A few years after they are married, Katherine and her baby die during childbirth and while Chips is never the same, he continues mentoring hundreds, thousands of boys as they pass through the school from young boy to manhood. He teaches at least three generations from several families whose sons attend the school. Several of his former students serve in the first World War and are killed. He is asked to resign because of his age and difference in teaching style but he refuses. Eventually he serves as headmaster temporarily when the official headmaster decides to go off to war. Five years later he retires on his own, with 63 years at the school, and a man known as an "institution" at Brookfield. The headmaster who once urged him to retire, regrets his eventual decision to leave but is very happy he stayed on five more years and proved him (the headmaster) wrong about his style of teaching. The teachers, current and former students are sad to see him go. He is after all as much an institution as the institution itself.


Eventually he becomes sick and as he lay dying in his bed he hears the headmaster who is back from war and in charge of the school again, standing in his bedroom talking to a man, one of Chips former students from many years before. The headmaster comments that it's a shame Mr. Chips was so lonely and never married or had children. Mr. Chips former student tells the headmaster that long ago he was married, something many people new to Brookfield did not know. And finally the headmaster remarks it was such a shame Mr. Chips never had any children. At this point, Mr. Chips, very ill but still somewhat coherent, wakes up and reminds them he had many children, thousands of them, all boys, and he smiles and the screen fades to all of the young faces who passed through his classroom and office over the past 6 decades.


Robert Donat who was only 34 years old at the time the movie was filmed, was incredible in the role, portraying a man from his thirties to his nineties. The acting, directing and makeup were superb. The story is timeless, reminding us that we all have a purpose and that the little things we do every day can have a tremendous positive impact on others for generations to come.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Why would mom and dad do this?

I had the strangest dream last night. My siblings Kim, Dave and me were still kids living at home and mom and dad sold their place here and were moving us back down to Miami. And I cried and cried, leaving our home here, my parents home where we spent so many years, well it was just unbelievable. And I asked mom and dad if we were buying back the house grams and gramps lived in down in Miami, the one they lived in when we were growing up down there and they said NO! We were going to be living in the outskirts of Miami but nowhere near where we grew up when we were there. Why would they move us out of the rural North Florida country BACK to the city we fled in 1980? I have no idea.

It was weird. Just like the recurring dreams I used to have about gram and gramps house and me talking to gramps.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Another departmental Christmas party over...

Another department Christmas party come and gone. I think it was supposed to be called "Holiday Party" but I'm not particularly interested in PC. I survived and actually had a good time. I know I know, unsocial Jess actually showed up and had a good time. I am sure some were shocked that I was there but see the departmental party is so informal and we don't dress up for it, we have it from noon to 2 pm at work in the conference room. It's catered and a lot of fun. One of my coworkers loves doing the decorating, many of us chipped in to clean up, and that was that. Too bad I didn't eat much. I wasn't even trying NOT to eat but with all that food they had catered, all I ate was two small slices of turkey, a few pieces of broccoli and celery. Amazing eh? It seems like only yesterday we were attending LAST YEAR'S party, now we just had THIS YEAR'S party.

Where does the time go?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Another "WTF is going on in public schools?" moment!

A day after I post that Florida passes a law requiring 8th graders to choose majors (in the hopes of molding them into something later in life), we find out that Needham High School in Boston is no longer publishing it's Honor Roll.

From the Boston Globe story:

"In an e-mail to students and parents, Richards said that Needham’s high achievement levels have a dark side, creating a competitive culture among students where grades are compared within groups and argued over with teachers.

He said he received 60 e-mails from supporters and critics of his decision.

Critics said publishing the honor roll in the local paper counters the media’s emphasis on athletics and tragedies.

Richards responds: ‘‘By having an honor roll in the first place, the school participates in a sorting of students."



Wow. Is that something or WHAT?

I remember that one time I achieved the A/B honor roll in high school, which was in my senior year. I couldn't wait to open the weekly newspaper to see my name in there. I worked hard that semester, I EARNED it. And while I was an average student, I never for one moment felt we should have begrudged those honor roll students for their achievements.

Richards claims the school participates in a "sorting of students" well what the hell does he expect? Does he think every student to be exactly the same? As long as every student has an EQUAL opportunity to learn, I say every student for him(or her) self.

Shame on Needham High School for sending the message that achievement is a bad thing.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Dear whiney college students....

GROW UP!

In case you folks are wondering what that is all about, there's a mess of students complaining that administration should cancel the first day of classes on January 8th because that's the night of the BCS National Championship game. (Isn't it enough they extended the drop deadline for them?)

Besides, in a school of nearly 50,000 students, where are most of them going? The BCS allotted only 16,000 tickets to each school (and doesn't that seem REALLY odd considering the stadium seats near 80,000)? Out of UF's 16,000, only 1,200 tickets were designated for students. I suppose the rest of the students going will pay phenomenal prices to purchase tickets, fly to Glendale, stay in a hotel, all for a football game. This when most of them are probably so broke they can hardly pay their rent or buy groceries. These are likely the same students who whine if they have classes on Fridays. I wish I could say I'm surprised but I'm not.

It's a good thing they have priorities eh?

Friday, December 08, 2006

Done done done!

Well as it stands I have a 94.49 "A" grade in Biology and a 96 "A" in Social Problems. Funny about the Sociology course, I could have sworn that the answer that marked incorrect was correct and sure enough I emailed the professor and turns out I was right. Some of these professors get pretty fumed that the instructors manuals they purchase from the publisher have test questions with incorrect answers!

Six hours down, six more to go in spring, will it ever end?

I decided after I finish my BS I am going to get my teachers certification as backup to help carry me through before or during graduate school.

I am so glad this term is over!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

"I know something you don't know"

Ok I can keep secrets but when it comes to buying gifts for DH, I just can't.

I bought him a GPS system for Christmas/birthday since they are within a few weeks of each other. Ok so I lied and told him I paid $200 something when really with tax the whole thing and the software came to $517. But I was going to get a $50 rebate, doesn't THAT count? Well anyway, the day I ordered it online for him I was so excited and I said "I am not going to tell him."

That night I said "I know something you don't know" which turned into him asking "whadja get me, whadja get me, whadja get me?" over and over and over again. Then he started going down the list of possible things I could have gotten him, we went through the old "is it bigger than a breadbox" and I had to think how big a bread box was. He kept trying to guess but missed it, except once, but I didn't tell him.

Finally it ended like this>>>

DH: I know you don't want to tell me so I don't want to know

Me: Are you sure you don't want to know?

DH: Well do you want me to know?

Me: Well do you want to know

DH: Only if you want to tell me'

Me: Only if you want to know

DH: Well ok

Me: It's a ----(I couldn't do it)

DH: Ok Ok I can tell you want it to be a surprise, right?

Me: Yeah, but I really want to tell you

DH: Ok what is it?

Me: It's a ----(again I just couldn't)

DH: Ok fine, I don't want to know, cause I can tell you don't want me to know.

Me: Well I want you to know, I just want you to be in awe (I mean I knew he'd be shocked)

DH: Ok then tell me

Me: I can't. Wait I'll show you. (Why is it that I could show him a pic of it but not tell him?)

DH: Ok let me see.

Me: Wait, how about I read you a description first

DH: Ok

Me: (proceeding to read description and hesitating before saying what it was, finally I blurted it out)

DH: See, I guessed handheld GPS but you lied and said that wasn't it.

Me: Well I didn't want you to know. Are you upset that you know now?

DH: No. How much did it cost?

And the rest is history. When it came in he was thrilled except he got his hot little hands on the receipt and had a fit. For three hours I had to hear about how I should have discussed with him spending this much money (as we usually do) before buying it. But I was thinking why would I discuss it iwth him if it was a surprise?

Anyway, after he nagged me for three hours about how he couldn't believe I would spend that kind of money I said "FINE I WILL RETURN IT" and sure enough we returned it the other day in the local store and got a credit for it on my card.

So what did he eventually get for Christmas?

His Amazon Wishlist. A copy of Hogan's Heroes 5th Season DVD and the movie Awakenings with Robert Deniro. Total cost: Less than $50. Gotta love it.

And oh yeah, on the way home last night from work, I said "I know something you don't know"
He looked at me and said "what?"

And you can guess what happened next---I had to tell him, I have this inability to keep a secret like that.

But I am keeping a secret from my dad. I got him something, it's not for Christmas though it's for after-Christmas because we don't do Christmas gifts (it alleviates everyone from feeling burdened and besides who has the money for Christmas gifts?). But I am not going to tell him what it is. I told mom and she knows and I told her to let him know that I am sending him a surprise..something he'll love. And nobody's going to tell him what it is. I like surprising pa, he worked so hard for us all our lives, sacrificing so much, he deserves to be spoiled. Of course mom's already spoiled, she knows what I got her....she told me what she wanted LOL.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Tag, I'm it...

Ok I've been tagged by Kelly.

According to the rules…Each player of this game lists 6 weird things about themselves. People who get tagged need to write a blog post of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says “you are tagged” in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

1. I am anal retentive about spelling. It takes everything I have NOT to point out spelling errors of people I care about, because I don't want them to think I think they are dumb. (I don't think that at all)

2. I can't study or relax at home unless the house is clean and everything is in its place.

3. I remember dreams I had going back to when I was three years old.

4. I have a photographic memory for numbers, especially grouped numbers like phone numbers and social security numbers.

5. I once had an affinity for spitting. I was growing up in Miami and my cuban friends who were boys used to spit so I did too and soon everyone called me a human water sprinkler.

6. I began reading at the age of three. By the time I was a junior in high school, I had read every young adult fiction in our school library. Not having anything to read would make me restless and bored and so I began reading all of my schoolbooks cover to cover.

I am tagging...

RedQueen
Mom
Dad
Robin
Debbie in Jersey
Blue Moon Mama

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

I know, I should get a life eh?


You would think that an institution of higher learning would be the ONE place where signs and building names would be spelled correctly. You would think that people whose job it is to create signs would have a little attention to detail, but even if they don't--did they NOT notice the dozen or so signs posted in the area that do have the building name properly spelled? Now it doesn't end there. Being familiar with those buildings, it struck me odd that the sign implies there's an 1142-1205 in McCarty D. Those rooms do not exist in that wing.

Then, as I continued my mid-day walk, I noticed something else--another sign attached to the wall one of the buildings which adjoin the one above.

This sign has the arrow and rooms right, those rooms exist in the wing specified.

Too bad they misspelled it. Again.

Now you might think me being anal retentive but you'd be surprised how many signs on campus are misspelled and most folks never notice.

Several years ago RedQueen aka Deb- and I were enjoying a mid-day stroll on campus and came across a large standard University sign pointing to the huge building which contains the student union, activities, food court, etc. The sign in front of the buliding included the words building "Student Govrenment". That was the first time I saw Government spelled that way. I was impressed. It was too good to pass up because Deb got a picture of it. I can't remember how long it was after we made the phone call that they changed it. I can tell you one thing, I'm sure they took their time.

Among the other misspelled signs I've come across are less noticeable but they do exist. For instance, a reserved parking sign has the word "Adminisration" instead of "Administration" printed in big bold letters. That sign has been there for more than a year. If nobody has noticed it but me, that's scary. If somebody noticed it and it's still like that then nobody gives a shit, most likely it's the people who are supposed to fix it.

Oy!

Friday, December 01, 2006

The fall of customer service...

I finally took a few digital pics of the remnants of my office chair at work, you know the one that broke and sent me flying backwards a few weeks ago.

Let me give you the rest of the scoop. I called Office Depot about the chair after it happened and the manager I spoke to transferred me to their furniture executive. He checked the item number in their stock and told me there was nothing they could do because 1) they no longer carry it and 2) since I purchased it over a year ago and had no extended warranty. I said "who buys an extended warranty on a $119 chair?" (I mean really, WHO?) And besides I reminded him that warranty or no, even a fourteen month old office chair sold at a reputable office supply store should be reliable enough that it won't just break apart in fourteen months.

He went on to explain that it was over a year since I purchased it and even the manufacturer warranty had expired. Actually it had been nearly fourteen months and because I believe this was a serious manufacturing defect, not just the fabric tearing or a wheel falling off, I was adamant that something should be done. I asked him if Office Depot backs their purchases and he said yes, within the warranty period. After a dozen "I'm sorry but it's out of our hands" I finally asked him for the manufacturer's information. I did notice the manufacturer info he gave me and what was on the bottom of the chair were two different things. I told the Office Depot furniture exec that and he said "oh the name on the bottom of the chair is probably one of our distribution subsidiaries".

I contacted the manufacturer he gave me, not only was the phone number in VIRGINIA and NOT in California where the company was supposed to be, but the number wasn't even for the manufacturer it was for a company that had nothing to do with making furniture. I looked up the manufacturer's number online and when I called them they were nothing but nice and the young lady I talked to asked me for the info on the bottom of the chair. When I told her that their company name and info was not there, she said "we are not the manufacturer, I'm sorry". She was really nice and I appreciated her time.

In checking out the info on the company on the bottom of the chair, it was Swinton Avenue Trading in Boca Raton, FL. No phone number listed and a PO Box address. I could find NOTHING on the internet. When I checked the Florida occupational license database online and it shows the company with a similar name in South Florida did exist but not anymore.

So...WHO is the manufacturer? Well your guess is as good as mine. The furniture guy at OD INSISTS that he gave me the correct information, the manufacturer insists they are not the manufacturer.


When I called Office Depot yesterday and explained all this to the furniture exec, he kept telling me I should have purchased the extended warranty and there was nothing he could do. By that time, I'd had enough talk, now I wanted action and the only way I was going to get it is if I took matters a bit further. I politely thanked him and hung up and decided who I would contact.

I wrote the CEO of Office Depot, his name is Steve Odland and his email is steve.odland@officedepot.com (at least it's what I managed to uncover in my research) and I wrote him what I thought was a well-thought out superbly written email (including pictures of my chair) about the entire situation up to yesterday's final phone call with the local Office Depot store.

Look, all I want is a store credit for $119.99 which is what I paid for the chair so I can put it towards a new and better chair. That's it. I told Mr. Odland that if I had been the manager at Office Depot and a customer approached me in this very situation with these exact details, I would have insisted he/she bring the chair in and I would have issued a credit for that amount. I mentioned that Office Depot would hardly lose a profit because of that credit, but in fact they would have kept a longtime customer, which I believe is extremely important to the life of a business. Not only do repeat customers continue to shop there, but they tell other people they should shop there too. Word of mouth can make or break a company.

This is not the first time a company has tried to screw me over and it isn't the first time I've contacted the CEO and complained (surprisingly they usually respond and rather apologetically I might add). I am sure I will hear from Mr. Odland and if I don't in a few days I will send another email, and then another, and if I have to write him a letter and mail it I will do that too. Sure he has a ton of other more important things going on like board meetings and major decisions regarding the company BUT...I've got to think that it's because he has better things to do than deal with something as "petty" as this, that may motivate him to ask someone to intervene on my behalf. When a customer takes the time to write the CEO and complain, it's serious. It means that somewhere along the line, someone isn't doing their job. And most CEO's do not like that, it costs the company money.



And so we'll see what happens! In the meantime here are some pics!

This is the part of the chair yours truly USED to sit in till it broke. It was a rather comfy chair with a nice back cushion, that's why I bought it. I needed a good back support!
















This is the shaft that connects to the metal plate on the bottom of the chair. The base of the top piece you see here that is all lit up is the piece welded to the chair. It is just jagged metal edges when you see it closeup.































This photo is of the plate on the bottom of the chair which the pole is supposed to be welded to. As you can see it is not. It is essentially sheared right off.
















So, what do ya think?

Judge Mark Moseley, of the 8th Circuit Court in Alachua County---you are on notice...

For those who haven't been keeping up with my recent posts about the problems my pal RedQueen and her family who are being terrorized by a maniac teenager and are having getting a restraining order against this kid (Check out the blog on the sidebar of my main page titled "Of Shoes and Ships and Sealing Wax")

Apparently Judge MARK MOSELEY has decided that there is a lack of evidence for a restraining order against this kid. In case you need a refresher, there are three boys involved...my friend's son, his best friend, and his best friend's next door neighbor.

The maniac teenager who lives next door to the best friend not only kicked that boy's old dog in the face, but he also vandalized my friend's son's car to the tune of $500 worth of damage. He has also made violent threats on my friend's son's voicemail (documented and heard by Alachua County Sheriff Deputies). He has also had his creepy friends call my friend's son's voicemail constantly telling him that the creep is going to harm him. H even approached my friend's son at his best friend's house with a gang of other kids, a 2x4, a molotov cocktail, and a pellet gun. He meant to do my friend's son serious harm. Thank GOD he didn't.

There's also some speculation that this maniac kid is involved in some other criminal activity which I won't go into. The Deputies are investigating it but in the meantime, my friend and her family need some LEGAL protection.

Meanwhile my friend hasn't slept, hasn't eaten, can't relax, and looks so tired and exhausted like I've NEVER seen her before!!! What's wrong with this picture? An innocent family suffers while a criminal element goes free.

Oh and where are the maniac's parents? They are working professionals and they are hardly ever home and so this kid runs amock. And why isn't more being done? The other family involved is too scared to complain. And no wonder....when your life is in danger, the fear factor takes over. I'd be scared too but SOMEONE has to stop them, which is why my friend is taking action to protect her family and do something about this little creep.

Mark Moseley has failed the public. By refusing ng a temporary restraining order, by making an innocent family have to endure fear and terror by making them wait two weeks for a hearing, he is allowing a criminal element to wreak havoc on our community and harm innocent people. To refuse a restraining order for lack of evidence when the police are currently investigating this creep, is ludicrous. He should have been on the side of caution and protected these people until something more can be done.

Judge Moseley had better hope that in these two weeks until the hearing, something serious doesn't happen. And he better hope that should he deny the second request for the order, something serious doesn't happen. If something does happen, I am going to hold not the maniac teen and his parents personally responsible but I am going to hold Judge Mark Moseley personally responsible too for turning a blind eye to justice. Mark my words on that one. I can write well, and I am vocal and I will use those gifts God gave me to make sure the people who let this thing go pay dearly should anything happen to the people I care about. When my friends, family, coworkers, and the general public who are outraged by this travesty of justice are through, not only will this maniac teenager be in prison, and his parents ruined, but Moseley himself won't have a snowball's chance in hell of being re-elected.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Another one of life's most embarassing moments...

Ok ok so my underwear elastic broke in the parking lot, mom lost hers, Deb lost hers. So I was nearly busted for the scandalous "secret" stamp episode that occured in our barracks when i was in the military (Oh wait can I talk about that now LOL?) So I have done some stupid things, who hasn't.

But today I was innocent, just minding my own business, sitting in my office preparing for the end of my day performing tasks like returning emails, making phone calls and cleaning up my daily mess when out of the blue BAM! I tumbled backwards, lay on the floor with my feet up in the air and shouted "I don't fucking believe this". My chair threw my ass out of it and onto the floor. Thank God that "A" wasn't in his office, thank God nobody was in my office with me hearing me go apeshit with the "f" word and thank God I was wearing underwear (at least that's what "JAD" told me later--she was referring to Britney's recent crotch shots on the internet but I digress....)

Those addicted to being on the phone will be impressed at the fact that throughout this "horrible tragic event", the phone receiver in my hand never dropped. In fact, while I was on the floor I was completing my phone call. Oh hell yeah I'm good.

It wasn't my fault the chair broke. It was made in China (nuff said) and purchased at a local office supply chain (nuff said). The stem of the chair which was welded metal broke clean off the bottom of the chair which it was connected to. It was a clean break and looked to ME like a shitty welding job. Well after hearing the ruckus and my few choice words, "JB" came over from his office next door to see if I was ok. Oh nothing more than my pride was hurt, my shoulder had hit the desk but it's just a little sore now with a slight bruise and my back isn't sore like it was so I am fine. But gee, it was funny, I mean after my few choice words, even I was laughing.

Eventually I threw the two pieces of the chair in the hallway for maintenance to take but how things work at my institution, it'll be a year before the chair is removed. Therefore, I am going to take my camera Monday and get a picture of it for you so you can see the awful thing that maimed me for life. Where do I sue?

I can see it now, the headlines would read:

"Amazingly gorgeous and intelligent woman's chair falls backwards, she sues university $10 million for pain and suffering" (ok ok so I took some artistic license there, I'd only sue for $5 million!!)

Let me just tell you this, if I was going to sue that place for pain and suffering it wouldn't be over falling backwards out of some silly chair. Trust me on that one :)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Teenagers who terrorize others...

Man I am really pissed off. My pal has a problem you can read about here. It's about a teenage terror who lives next door to her son's best friend. This teen is dangerous, to my friend, her son and husband and to her son's best friend and his family. It's escalated to the point of fearing for one's safety. It just burns me up. First off, his parents don't give a damn. They should be held personally responsible for his actions, somebody needs to give them a serious fucking (excuse my french) wake-up call before he does any more harm.

If you were in her shoes what would you do?

And ps..I'm editing in...since I found out that Deb's restraining order against our 16-year old terrorizing teen whose parents don't give a damn, was DENIED, I am furious, but I remain calm. Calm because I believe the law will prevail and if not, we're Italian. :)

I saw D~ today. She is so tired and worn out, I wanted to just carry her on my back and take her home, tuck her into bed and guard her door for a week so no one would wake her up. Sadly I can't do that and I don't think Deb is the kinda gal who relishes being thrown over people's shoulders, although I would if I had to and she's so light anyway :)

Seriously though, if this 16-year old SOB does ANYTHING to D and her family, I will stop at nothing to see him behind bars for the rest of his life. I will not harm him physically but I will make sure that he pays, I promise you that. Of course I will have to wait in line behind sis, Sma, Pa and the rest of my family and of course D's.....

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Peepers & Pebbles...

Most of you know the story but I'll repeat it just for the hell of it. Back in February I was going out one night and I heard this "meow" from behind these trees in our yard. Lo and behold it was a black and white cat, (later we found out she was about two years old), and she looked very well cared for and had an exceptionally shiny coat. Since we had seen a cat similar to her in our woods periodically (we had a few neighbors with cats), we figured she belonged to one of them. (I eventually called our four neighbors and she did not belong to them). So that night, I petted her and gave her a can of chicken and went on my way. Well, she stayed. She was there day after day, we would arrive home from work and she'd be waiting for us. I don't know where she went all day but one day I was off work and found out she would sleep all day in a bed of pine needles under a huge azalea tree behind our house. We put up signs and put an ad in the paper for a lost cat but nobody ever called. I knew we couldn't keep her (our life was simple without kids and pets) and one day I called the Animal Services folks and was going to have them come pick her up. Being that she was well-cared for, we figured someone would adopt her. But then we cancelled that because we really liked her and she was sweet and we didn't want to see her stuck in some cage (it's a no-kill shelter).

Well for the good of the kitty and the neighborhood, we got her spayed through Operation Catnip. We also got her shots too, and eventually decided to keep her. And we named her Peepers and she's been with us ever since. She really liked the old cottage we lived in although we could hardly get her in the house during the last three months we lived there and she was with us. But she loved the outdoors and chances are she probably was raised in those woods. When we moved to the new place about 25 minutes further out, also in the woods, I was afraid how she'd handle it and I wanted her to be an inside cat but was unsure how she would adapt. So on the first day at our new place, we let her out of her kitty carrier and she ran off. I cried, DH worried but assured me she'd be back. At 10 pm that night she was sittnig outside our door wanting to be fed. So for another month we let her in and out as she preferred and even taught her how to use the built-in kitty door on the back door. She liked using it to go out but couldn't figure out how to get back in through it! Finally one day we were ready to keep her in all the time and since May she's been an inside-only cat. And she loves it. She is 12 pounds though not overweight, she is in great shape and she loves to play. She's pretty sedate most of the time but her play mode comes early in the morning and late at night! She knows that DH will get on the floor first thing in the morning and play with her!

Ok now here's the second story. About two months ago my parents heard a meow outside their house in the country. Turns out it was a terribly skinny kitty kat with a precious face and sweet personality. They had a dog and a bird and so they could not have an indoor cat but dad would have been happy keeping her as an outdoor cat. But the family we come from well we keep our animals indoors. So, mom and dad fed her every night, she got used to tuna and about a week after they found her, they asked DH and me if we wanted her. DH's first reaction was YES! He wanted that kitty even before he saw her. We had been thinking of a playmate for Peepers and well, what harm could it get saving another cat? Well we brought her home, she was so skinny you could see her bones! She probably weighed 4 pounds. We took her to the vet and paid over $100 for a spay, shots and the works and now she's an indoor-only very happy 8 pound cat who has this unique face and awesome playful personality. She's 2 1/2, a year younger than Peepers but she is more like a kitten.

And that is the story of Peepers and Pebbles. They are both still very young but Peepers is more like the mature older sister, occasionally chasing and swatting at Pebbles and asserting her territory (she's definitely the alpha cat) while Pebbles is a "lapcat" and likes to climb on the back of our chairs here in the home office and curl up around our shoulders. You would NEVER see Peepers doing that! DH built them each a window seat so they can sit by the open windows on the weekend and sleep. They like that. Pebbles has many times taken up residence in our master bath by the window next to the tub and just takes in the cool crisp air. That's probably the closest we'll get her to a bath LOL.


We finally got some recent photos of Peeps and Pebs so I can post them. Took me ages to upload to photobucket (dialup sucks!) and since I am home sick with some kind of stomach bug and have nothing else to do in between resting and checking my work e-mail. Here goes!


One of these things doesn't belong. Can you guess?






















Definitely a "lady of leisure"













Imagine my surprise when after paying the bills, filing
some paperwork and cleaning up my desk, I found a
"Pebbles" in my in-box.


















My name is Peepers and I'm addicted to standing by the
back door hoping it will magically open. Funny how

it never does.
















This isn't what it looks like. I'm not playing with
a little stuffed kitty-kat, honest!
















I do believe Peepers is livin' in the lap of luxury!

















Peek-a-boo or is that Peek-a-Pebs?




























Peepers at play!
















Look closely! This is as close as these sisters get
without getting into trouble!



















There's more to come eventually but for now this should hold ya! Now you have seen the infamous Peeps and Pebs!

Monday, November 27, 2006

You're twentysomething and in college--GROW UP!!

The names in this post have been changed to protect the innocent.

There's a student, we'll call her Rhonda and she had a scheduled exam the week of Thanksgiving. Students were given the opportunity to take it early so they could leave town or they could take it on the scheduled date before the holiday. Rhonda however decides she wants to take it when she comes back from her holiday. She booked her plane ticket so she could leave earlier because it was cheaper. Now I'm thinking "uh didn't she read her syllabus? The exam date is very clearly outlined in it" but did that matter to Rhonda? Nope.

Her professor is a real great guy, everyone loves him, he's not only smart and savvy in his field, but he's a genuinely nice guy and cares about his students. He gives his students a second chance and opportunity to prove themselves and succeed in class. But there are always a few who take advantage of that fact. Anyway, here comes Rhonda on the Monday after Thanksgiving to take her test after the fact....and she isn't even prepared for it, that much is evident, even though she had extra time to prepare for it, she didn't. So I suppose she didn't gain an advantage over those who took it early or on time, did she?

My beef here isn't with the professor who tried to help her, it is with college students who want us all to think they are adults yet they do not act in such a manner. Classes are overcrowded, there aren't enough professors to go around, I say that the lazy slackers like Rhonda should give up their seats to students who really want to learn.

There's a chance Rhonda will "grow up" and be a productive member of society but there's a chance too that she will continue to play the pity card to get her way and while she'll probably get a job somewhere and work her way through life, she'll be a burden to someone, somewhere in society. And along the way she use the people who help her along in life and one day it's going to come back at her.

I know that the extra time Rhonda had was not used to prepare herself for her exam so I am not concerned she got an extra edge but her fellow students may not know that. Had I been Rhonda's teacher I would have liked to ask her how she would have felt if the shoe had been on the other foot. How would she have felt if she had been forced to take the exam on the scheduled date and someone else had the opportunity to take it a week later? You see, I am quite sure Rhonda never thought of this because normally people like her do not consider the consequences of their actions, they don't think about what's right and wrong, what's fair and unfair, they don't care about anyone but themselves.

Welcome to the new generation of college students which consists of a rather large population of young people who have so much handed to them, who think the world revolves around them and the rest of us should just drop everything to do for them. No way, not me. Perhaps it's why my professors like me, perhaps it's why some of the younger ones in my class don't like me. I am a caring and compassionate person, but I draw the line at using and abusing PEOPLE for one's advantage.

These young people have to be taught at a young age about being caring and compassionate and also just as important they must be taught about respect for people and for the rules which exist and are necessary for society to function. Life is not black and white, I believe for the most part it is gray and yes there are times rules may be bent but not where it gives one person an unfair advantage over another.

And so now that I have it out of my system, I feel better. But I know that not far into the future there will be another Rhonda, in fact several of them and I'll be bitching again before you know it.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Why men can't handle the family finances...

...because they don't want to. I'm sure of it.

My DH is a smart guy, he can handle the family finances if he wanted to but the few times I tried to show him how to use our credit union billpay system, he just refused to learn. He said it looked complicated. He knows who we pay and usually how much we pay. He knows where the bills are kept, but he just won't learn to actually pay them. I've known a lot of men like this so DH is not the only one. The big question is do they not do it because they really don't want to mess it up or because they just don't want to do it?

It reminds me of an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond where Ray doesn't understand why Debra hates doing the family finances and he keeps talking about how easy it is and so she hands it over to him. What does he do? Oh he writes checks to pay the bills but doesn't balance the checkbook and doesn't reconcile the statement. He winds up $3,000 in the hole and tries to cover it up with a fake checkbook so Debra won't know.

It could be that DH knows I have a pretty good handle on it and he doesn't want to mess anything up and I can understand those feelings. However DH does slightly remind me of the character of Frank Barone (in more ways than one if you only knew). Now the character of Frank is a smart guy in his own right but he thinks the women should handle the "home" while the men do all the "hard" work.

Oh yeah as if "the home" wasn't hard work? LOL so who wants to relay that to my mother, my mother-in-law, and oh yeah--our grandmothers? Hmm....

Friday, November 24, 2006

Christmas not about shopping...

Ok at the risk of being shunned by those who read my blog who participate in the Christmas shopping misery I am going to just come out and say--I think you are insane if you do it.

As I get older, I am more comfortable with our decision not to participate in the gift-giving season. This reassurance comes every time I see the television footage of the madness of people fighting over simple things. Storming through store entrances, practically trampling one another, to get easy bake ovens? Come on people. Have you forgotten the reason for the season?

This shopping stuff has nothing to do with celebrating either holiday. The media and big corporations have turned what should be a holiday of peace and reflection into a shopping frenzy. DH and I can't in good conscience be a part of it. And when we see footage of people trampling each other for easy bake ovens and $600 play stations it makes us feel embarassed that these people are actually members of the human race.

I'm not saying that people who buy Christmas gifts are bad people ok, but I think you get what I am saying and that the frenzy is nonsense and those who participate in the frenzy are just plain insane. The commercialization of an important celebration has taken away from the true meaning of it.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Things to be thankful for...

Well another Thanksgiving has come and gone and amazingly everyone in my family survived it. Perhaps we were all well behaved? I spent the day cooking a 6.36 lb turkey and some small side dishes as well as a punkin' pie. My butterball turkey came out a bit dry but DH thought it was the best ever (uh-huh, I know, WHY would I want to argue with him?). Long after we cleaned up and the pie was baked, I drove over to mom and dad's to see the rest of the family. I gotta get my mom a dishwasher. Every year she cooks and every year she winds up doing all the dishes, and believe me in my family, on special occasions, it seems every pot and pan, every dish, silver and glass is used. I think dad's idea of taking her out to dinner next year is perfect. That or if things go well, everyone comes to my house, well almost everyone.....I have a feeling grams will want to be at my aunt's house. I can't tell you if my DH will have set aside his feelings about my family by then but I can tell you while there is hope and he has talked of it, there is no hope for him and grams. It's a battle of wills, both are stubborn, both believe the other is wrong, and frankly neither of them will give on this issue. That's fine with me. I love them both and already told them I wasn't taking sides on it. Let's just put it this way, I truly believe that as much as my grandmother loves me, NOBODY would have been good enough for me ok? She's a wonderful woman who has given us all much over the years. Without her, our lives would have been empty. However....even 89 year old grandmothers aren't without their faults. They have earned the right to be respected but it's a two way street.

Now if I know my mom she's going to start feeling bad and make negative comments on this post about the situation. Mom, before you feel sad and make negative comments about the situation, don't. Believe it or not, despite the situation--I am happy and am optimist about the future. I also know that we just cannot make two people see eye to eye if they do not want to. You know that. Everyone has a different personality and sometimes you cannot change someone no matter how hard you try. We cannot force these kinds of situations to be like we want them to be. This is one of those situations where we are dealing with two obstinate people. And I for one, while I am an optimist about things working out, I am not going to use up all my creative energies trying to make the situation what I want it to be.

Like mom, I have the ability to see both sides of a situation. And like mom I am a placater, I feel the need to mediate, work things out between warring factions. But I have found that the placaters, the mediators, in the family sometimes suffer the most if they persist on matters working out to their satisfaction. I often remind DH of the serenity prayer which may seem hokey to many but I am learning to live by:


God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.


Honestly when a situation doesn't go my way, I sit back and ask myself is it something I can change? And if I can't change it, do I have the courage to sit back and let it go? Most people will probably find that difficult, but it's because we're human. It takes an extreme amount of willpower to let something go that is beyond one's control. In my situation, I have let go of what I can't control, and I find such peace in it even though the situation itself is a bit sad and frustrating. If I were to focus my energies on it, I would be a mess. Those who care about me would rather see me happy and so now maybe they understand a little bit more about why I just incorporate the situation into my life and accept it for what it is, instead of using up my energies to fix it. Does that make sense? I am not a religious person but I do pray, and I do believe that what will be, will be, regardless of how we humans intervene and try to twist and turn things to suit us. Que sera sera or something like that.

On the whole I enjoyed my Thanksgiving. Instead of focusing on what I don't have or what I can't change, I focus on what I do have and what I can change. I am thankful for being alive and healthy, I am thankful for a husband who I love and trust, I am thankful for my mom and dad who brought me into the world and saw me through some pretty tough times and love me for who I am and encourage me to be all I can be. I am thankful for my sister who, even though she is terribly critical of herself, she is a gift to me, she is the best sister anyone could ever ask for. I am thankful for my brother who, despite the fact I don't see or hear from him, is a decent guy. I am thankful for my grams who was there for me all my life when I felt I had nobody else to turn to. I am thankful for my aunt, my mamaw in Georgia, my cousins, uncles, all my family period. I am thankful for my job, a good job which pays well and gives great benefits like health insurance and a tuition waiver for college. I am thankful I work in a department where I love the people I work with---well at least most of them. I am thankful for not having any illnesses, diseases or conditions that limit my lifestyle or lifespan. I am thankful for living in America where I can write and speak freely, attend college, own property, vote, and make my own life choices.

I am especially grateful to be alive. Somehow, someway, with all the shit I have done in my life, God has seen fit to allow me to wake up every morning just one more time. I know from having lost people I cared about--people who went to bed one day and just never woke up, who went in for a simple operation and died freakishly and unexpectedly, who one day were healthy and the next day found out they had cancer or a brain tumor and only had weeks to live, who got into their car and wound up in an fatal accident, who got in their car one day to run a simple errand only to be gunned down by a carjacker--I know that every day we wake up and take another breath is a good day. We only get one chance at life and this is it. I just hope I'm doing it right!