December 31, 2007

The 2008 Pee-On Tour

Ruthie and Ray came to visit Boyfriend and me this past weekend. We indulged in many glasses of chocolate cherry wine, and other assorted libations. As you may know, drinking chocolate cherry wine makes for some pretty aggressive talk accompanied by laughter most likely to cause one to wet one's pants. I managed the Kegel pretty well, but there is a suspicious spot on the couch where Ruthie was sitting.

One thing I learned about Ray is that he hates Bing Crosby. He doesn't avoid Bing Crosby. He doesn't dislike Bing Crosby. He can not stand (read: hates) Bing Crosby. Why Bing Crosby? I have no idea. What's not to like? Except for the fact that he was a known child abuser to his kids. Ray can't stand to watch him in movies and I'm guessing he throws up in his mouth a little when White Christmas plays on the radio. In fact, Ray got so agitated over his hatred for Bing that he declared his wish to go piss on his grave. And not just piss on his grave, piss on his grave after drinking forty-seven cups of coffee. Ray wants to make the old corpse float away.

Bing Crosby? Piss on his grave? That's just weird. Pretty damn funny, but weird.

The more we talked about peeing on Bing's grave, the more we came up with other names of people we hate. (So much for goodwill feelings of the holidays.) We decided to organize a Pee-On Tour where we map out the graves of these despicable people and pee on their graves. Unfortunately, the people we came up with aren't in graves yet, except for Bing. Ray decided we could just knock them over and pee on them while they were on the ground.

Our list so far:

Bing Crosby (of course)
Rachel Ray
Oprah Winfrey
That icky football player who's too full of himself (Ruthie's pick, but I can't remember his name)

Now that I'm putting this in print it seems really stupid. Peeing on people. Peeing on graves. It's pretty twisted, isn't it? I can't make it sound as funny as it actually was. Oh, just go drink a bottle of chocolate cherry wine and read this post again. Then add some people to the list. I know you'll want to.

December 08, 2007

Up On The Housetop

It was many years before I realized reindeer had hooves. You know, because of that song:

Up on the housetop reindeer paws...

Songs are written to reflect the times. Up On The Housetop takes me back to a simpler time when there was no such thing as soccer moms or the obsessive-compulsive overprotectiveness we see hanging like a black cloud over little kids who just want to play and pretend. Take, for example, the booty little Will gets:

Next comes a stocking for little Will
Oh just see what a glorious fill
Here is a hammer with lots of tacks
Also a ball and a whip that cracks.

Will doesn't get these things in modern times because Mom figures he'd probably bonk himself repeatedly in the head with the hammer and swallow the tacks. God only knows what he'd do with the whip.

Hey Mom, do your research and make sure that toy isn't painted with lead! Watch out for those button eyes on that stuffed animal! Don't forget the knee, shin, elbow, and head gear to go along with that new tricycle!

Oh, the good old days, when his whip was a boy's best friend.


November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Hoping everything goes smoothly for you this Thanksgiving. Gobble gobble.



November 19, 2007

Protesting Eggnoggery

Am I the only person in the world who doesn’t drink coffee? I love the smell of coffee. I love the thought of drinking coffee. But I can’t stand the taste of coffee. It totally roups me out.

So you’d think, with all my romanticizing about coffee (sitting in a sunroom I don’t have sipping on a big mug of coffee while perusing the newspaper or one of my favorite magazines during that completely relaxing morning time before going to work (ha!)) by now I might have done some coffee experimenting at my local Starbuck’s or other coffeehouse. I could only imagine that those giant lattes served to the Friends in Central Perk tasted just like a big, thick hot chocolate. And to order something with a “whisper of cinnamon” like Niles Crane would do in Café Nervosa would make me feel so utterly indulgent and grown-up. Why, with all the fancy-schmancy flavored stuff they put in coffee these days, have I been afraid to give it another shot?

Because they’ve just gone too far, that’s why. Getting fancy with coffee by serving café latte is one thing, but pumpkin cappuccino? When I see what flavors are available for coffee today, it makes me think I’m in a malt shop. It makes me want to buy the coffee because I love the flavor of caramel. I love the flavor of chocolate. Yes, I even love the flavor of pumpkin pie. But I quickly remember that these fabulous flavors are mere additions to that hideous and bitter beverage, coffee.

Today I went to the little shop down the way from my office to buy a muffin. I made comment to Ralph, the guy behind the counter every day when I go to buy my muffin, “ew, I see there’s eggnog coffee today.” Eggnog. OK, I said, eggnog. Coffee. Eggnog coffee. Ralph, who is usually jovial and friendly sort of looked down his nose at me and said, “well, you don’t even drink coffee so what would you know about it? It’s actually pretty good.”

All right, I apologize to Ralph and the skillions of people out there who love their eggnog coffee. I don’t know what I’m talking about because I can’t stand that bitter coffee taste, no matter what kind of fluff you add to it. But tell me the truth, do people drink this stuff because they think it really tastes good, or because they, like me, have coffee-drinking fantasies and the only way they can get it down without heaving it right back up again is to add some other flavor to it? If that is the case I applaud coffeehouses around the world for adding a little extra to their brew in order to draw in more customers.

But eggnog?





November 16, 2007

Pastaforians

Let's set aside for a moment the rule of thumb: never talk about religion, politics, or sex. Well, in the blogging world everyone talks about sex and lots and lots talk about politics. I haven't happened across many blogs addressing religious issues, but it could be I just have an instinctual aversion to them.

Today I'd like to give you my opinion of organized religion. That's organized religion, not spirituality, faith, or the actual existence of a supreme being. I've kept my opinions on organized religion to myself in my real life simply to avoid the head shakes of pity coming from my family (one member is a nun!) and other devout church goers; today I'm going to come out with it, even though I'm fairly certain my views are shared by many.


To me, organized religion is nothing more than a bunch of people coming together and practicing rituals, listening to readings, singing songs, and sharing similar beliefs that make them all feel good. It's strictly a psychological phenomenon. A religion gives them hope. A religion inspires them try to behave nicely, whether out of fear of damnation or aspirations to be more "God-like." Going to church makes some people feel good about themselves. They are happy to belong to a community. The fantastical beliefs of miracles and an afterlife give them a sense of peace and security.

It doesn't matter what the religion, from Judism to Scientology, the results are the same. Members belong because the psychological effects of practicing a specific organized religion, for them, are positive.

I'm all for happy people. If going to church once a week makes someone a happy person, then by all means, they should go to church. I'm going to stop here, because the tangents I could follow are so numerous and controversial I would most certainly be unable to articulate them.

The purpose of stating my opinion on this matter was inspired by the news regarding the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I'll spare you my attempts to explain the origins and intentions of this magnificent "religion" and simply direct you to this article.

Intelligent design vs. science: what do we teach our children in school? A little of both, the general consensus has been. Where is separation of state? Intelligent design, in my opinion, should be taught at home, at church, at catechism, at least when it comes to kids grades K-12. The Pastaforians argue that their Flying Spaghetti Monster is just as conceivable as God, Buddah, Allah and all the other supreme beings responsible for the inexplicable, and should be included in the intelligent design vs. science teachings in school, if indeed it is determined intelligent design remains in the classroom. They will present that point to the scholars attending the American Academy of Region annual meeting in San Diego this weekend. And what is even more encouraging is the fact that the Academy of Religion is actually allowing them to present their views. Will the Academy come to any conclusions to the question of what actually defines a religion? Will that definition determine what is taught in schools?

I think it is brilliant for someone, a group of people, to approach these heavy and controversial religious issues with a sense of humor. I'm also quite partial to their rendering of the Almighty Flying Spaghetti Monster.



November 15, 2007

Meredith, You Ignorant Bitch

One of my favorite blogs is Citizen of The Month. Neil has such a charming, self-deprecating manner you can't help but love him. He toils over becoming an adult in this post and most of the responses, including mine, addressed his consideration of including ads on his blog.

Here's what I have to say to you, Neil: I've said it before and I'll say it again (although I'm very apt to change my mind in the future) - ADS ARE ICKY! Because: A) They mess up a perfectly wonderful template. They're blinking and flashing and distracting. B) You may make a few bucks here and there, but the real reason those guys want ad space is to make a skillion times more money than they are paying you to show their ugly faces on your pretty blog site. Those greedy bastards have no interest in you, nor are they supporting your blogging endeavors by feigning interest in your site. They are paying you to pay themselves.

OK, now to qualify. I'm so anti-corporate these days it's pitiful. I'm also anti-advertising. I'm sick of watching the five-minute commercials for Viagra on TV. I'm tired of wading through pages and pages of ads in my favorite magazines. Ads are icky. (See? I told you I'd say it again.) They are designed to make money for The Man, not for poor schmucks like us. (Excuse the Yiddish verbiage flowing from Catholic fingers; you guys have a way with words I can't resist.)

So Neil, my love, relax and take it as it comes. You've said yourself you think too much. Stop it. You have arrived. You are what you are. If that means you have some notion that not making money is where it's at, then be the struggling artist. I, for one, see your resistance to blog ads as a sign of integrity instead of being less of an adult. But then again, I may very well have a very twisted idea of what purpose blogs should serve. Sure, I'd love to be famous some day, but not at the expense of being in "the clique." And when I make money from my writing, it will be of my own merit, not because Blogher says I belong. Can anyone just write for the sake of writing? I thought that's what blogs were all about. Am I really stupid and naive to believe that?

Yikes. Did all that come out of me? I hope I haven't ruined all chances of becoming one of your blog crushes, but I refuse to show you my boobs.

November 14, 2007

Dr. Dentist, DDS

A trip to the dentist. Who’s coming?! I tend to decline a trip to the dentist. For years I declined. The reasons are as follows:

  • Dentist #1: Childhood – masochistic maniac didn’t believe in Novocain. He simply said, “Bite on this black rubber thing while I insert this screaming drill into your tender little nerves.
  • Dentist #2: Preteen to early adulthood – married womanizing schmoozer who gave more attention to his bodacious hygienist than the teeth he was treating as she thrust her bosom into my face giving him ample view of the voluptuousness beneath her low-cut blouse. She reeked of Prince Machebelli perfume, which made my head buzz more than the happy gas.

Insert long absence from dental visits here.

  • Dentist #3: Late twenties to mid thirties – most likely the grandson of Dentist #1. Relished the practice of taking pocket measurements in that he could press that little pick so deep into the gum they bled, diseased or not. As he walked away the hygienist would glare bitterly at him and ask me, “Are you okay?” Eventually he informed me he would need to perform surgery on me. When I asked him to refer me to a specialist he went into a huffy tizz-fit, insulted by the insinuation of his incompetence.
  • Dentist #4: Mid thirties - Periodontist – no complaints except the treatment he was forced to give caused intense pain.

Insert another long absence from dental visits here.

  • Dentist #5: Present day – cute little thing, young enough to be my son. Very willing to administer Novocain and any other pain-killing substances when necessary. Also very eager to refer me to Dentist #4, the periodontist. They know each other well.
  • Dentist #6: Present day still – different dentist in periodontist Dentist #4’s practice. Another cute young thing who pats me on the shoulder as he leaves the room as though I were some old crone needing platonic affection, or out of pity for the painful procedures ahead of me. He presented to me the treatment plan and it doesn’t bode well. However, I’m determined to follow through.

Moral of the story: The reasons you choose to use to avoid going to the dentist will never trump rotting teeth and deteriorating jaw bones.

What I am grateful for today: Codeine.

Author's note: My smile is still beautiful. Don't go thinking I look like some toothless hillbilly with black gums.

November 07, 2007

Have Mercy On Our Souls

Boyfriend was going through some boxes of books salvaged from his parents' house during the move. He came across The Lutheran Hymnary, apparently belonging once to his grandpa. The copyright is 1935. And Boyfriend began to recite to me:

Also they teach that men cannot be justified before God by their own strength, merits or works, but are freely justified for Christ's sake through faith, when they believe that they are received into favor and that their sins are forgiven for Christ's sake, who, by His death, hath made satisfaction for our sins. This faith God imputes for righteousness in His sight.

He put down the book, and looked into my eyes with a straight face. "See?" He said. "Don't I do a great job of reading this shit?"

Reverent little fellow, isn't he?

November 02, 2007

November 01, 2007

NoWri, BloPo, It's All The Same To Me

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and also National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo). To negligent writers, November demands far too much and has that special way of making us feel impotent.

Last year I succeeded at NaNoWriMo. I'm not going to divulge how I succeeded; suffice it to say there was much scrambling and very little plot line, but 15,000 words I did write.

This month I'm going to concentrate on NaBloPoMo. I haven't signed up officially with the officials, but I'm taking the challenge nevertheless. Between this blog and the secret other one I have, oh, and that one other one which requires the insertion of PayPal buttons and stuff, I should be able to pull off at least one posting per day. No, I'm not going to tell you about the other blogs. They private. They're written by someone totally separate from Meredith, yet embodied by her all the same.

And speaking of blogs, I've decided there is no way in hell anyone will ever figure out I exist unless I go out and advertise myself or something. My subject matters and lack of dirty words apparently make me a bad candidate for a google search. While I crave and relish anonymity, I wish I could be interesting enough for people to look me up once in a while. Which brings me to my point: If you want to be a somewhat popular blogger, in addition to interesting/amusing posts do you also have to be big in the blogger social scene? Do you have to participate in the readings? The parties? Do you have to give out cookies and Best Post awards? Does being tagged for a meme indicate you have arrived? Are blogs only read by other bloggers?

If you have the answers to any of these questions, please let me know. Oh, wait. I'll never hear from you, because you don't even know I'm here.

October 18, 2007

What A Way To Earn A Living

I read blogs to inspire my own writing. I procrastinate doing my own writing by reading blogs. Contradictory statements? Or are blogs simply my preferred method of procrastinating on anything and everything?

How some bloggers write every day - post every day - astounds me. When I realized today (although I always knew) some bloggers do it for money, I was a little less astounded and a little more cynical.

The concept of blogging for money blows me away. I can understand news blogs, financial blogs, and other such informational blogs, but personal blogs? I suppose if you have more than an occasional reader like I have, advertising on the blog space might earn a little change. But the concept of getting paid to blog is completely beyond me. Can it be likened to a newspaper columnist? A contributing article in a magazine?

I realize I am too out-of-date to get it. Purchased writing is on paper. Books. Publications. Things the public buys. Freelance blogging? It just boggles my mind.

I read today that a person can make as much as, and exceed, $2000 a month blogging. What I think of as practice writing can actually be a profession. What is the world coming to when one can earn a living chatting away about whatever enters the mind? It's stunning. Simply stunning.

So where does that leave me? In the dark ages, I'm afraid. But I'll continue to blog in my spare time. Why, you may ask, when you aren't making any money? Beats the hell out of me. No, wait. Because it's fun. It's practice. It's bringing me closer to the world of technology. and while I make additions to my little ad-less blog and partake in writing for free, I can dream of the day when my book is published. On paper. The manuscript which is being produced on a machine known as the typewriter.

October 02, 2007

Trusting Certainty In Old People

Faux Ma, whispering: Meredith, see this silver chest?

She points to a wooden box on a shelf in her new laundry room closet.

Meredith: Yeah?

Faux Ma: There was another one just like it, only a double size. It had Helga's silver in it. Did you see it during the packing?

Meredith: No.

Faux Ma: It was on the pile of all the boxes with "X"s on them - the ones to be carried in a car.

Meredith: We put all of those boxes in my car, but I didn't see a silver chest on the pile.

Faux Ma: Are you sure? I know I put it on that pile.

Meredith: It wasn't in my car. Maybe Boyfriend put it in his car. We haven't unpacked that one yet.

Pause. Faux Ma doesn't want to confront Boyfriend on the subject. Boyfriend enters from garage.

Faux Ma: Boyfriend, did you see a silver chest like this one, only double size, when you were packing the cars this morning?

Boyfriend: No.

Faux Ma: I know I put it in the pile to be packed in the cars. It was 4:00 in the morning. I remember putting it on that pile of boxes.

Meredith and Boyfriend make suggestions. Maybe she put it in a cardboard box. Maybe it's in her own car that remains at the old house for the time being.

Faux Ma: No. I didn't put it in a box and the car is filled with file drawers.

Meredith and Boyfriend: We didn't move a double silver chest from that pile. There was no silver chest on that pile of boxes.

Faux Ma gets a worried look on her face.

Meredith: It's here. If it was packed, it's here. It will just take a while to find it in all the clutter.

Faux Ma: OK. Thank you.

Faux Ma remains worried and preoccupied.

Faux Ma: I wonder what happened to it.

Meredith: Do you need the silver this week?

Faux Ma: No.

Meredith: You'll find it before the end of the week.

Faux Ma was probably thinking Boyfriend or Meredith were careless and didn't handle the chest properly and it got mixed up with the boxes for the movers. If the movers saw it, they probably stole it.

Faux Ma: It really wasn't too valuable. It wasn't sterling, just silverplate. But it was old.

Meredith: It will turn up, I promise. Unless you threw it out, you will find it.

Faux Ma: OK. Thank you.

Pause.

Faux Ma: I know I put it on that pile for you to take in the car.

Meredith: It will show up!

Later Meredith, Boyfriend, Faux Ma, and Faux Pa went back to the old house to gather the remaining items and to clean up a little.

Faux Ma: Meredith, look!

Faux Ma presents in her arms a double silver chest.

Meredith: Where was it?

Faux Ma: In the bathtub.

Meredith: I knew it would show up.



September 27, 2007

That Grace, It Be O-Mazing

Dude, ya gotta lay off the shit, especially in church.

September 24, 2007

R.I.P.

Back in, oh, I suppose it was around 1980 or so, I broke up with a guy. It's a long, sordid story that involves Space Invaders, sibling rivalry, a penis with no girth, and accusations of infidelity. I won't get into it because it is so painful...not. More like, boring. Anyway, I had broken up with this guy, and as they always do, he came back. I must have embodied some advice I heard, leave them wanting more. All of them, my old boyfriends, came back at one point or another.

Anyway, a few weeks after we broke up this guy called while I was in the midst of some family event. I remember sitting around the table with everyone when the call came. He wanted to know if I would go to Northrup Auditorium with him, that evening, to see Marcel Marceau perform. I told him no, I didn't think that would be a very good idea. I knew there was more to the package than a free show given by an internationally known artist. All I could think of was that pencil-like weiner and gallons of cold sweat. Ew. Besides, I was in the midst of a family event. Someone's birthday or something.

I hemmed and hawed. I told him I was busy with the family. He practically begged me, and the more he pleaded, the bigger my ego got. My entire family was overhearing the conversation, and my mother finally asked, "what does he want?" I told her, and she gasped and said, "Go! You have to go! This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!" OK, she didn't know about his, you know, or that I would be expected to touch it at some point in the evening. Then ego says, he wants you bad, and you know you love it when that happens.

I knew it was wrong. My mother always told me not to lead men on. She always told me not to keep friends just for what they can give you. I was going to make the adult decision and say, no, it just isn't a good idea under the circumstances. With him begging me in one ear and my mother telling me to take advantage in the other, what could I do?

He picked me up and we went to see Marcel Marceau. Despite the bad rap mimes get, it was one of the most wonderful shows I'd ever seen. Despite the cognitive dissonance I got from my mother telling me to "take advantage," I'm glad I caved and accompanied this guy. Extra plus, gentialia was not part of the evening's expectations. We merely made out for about five minutes after he took me home. The making out part was always kind of good.

All in all it was a good night.


And a sweet good night to Marcel.


Marcel Marceau, 1923-2007






What Dog Are You?

The other day my friend Ruthie told me she (and her husband, sort of) had to put both of their dogs to sleep. One of them had cancer. The other was deaf and blind and probably had other problems that I can't think of right now. Angel, the cancer-stricken one, really had to go, and Harry, the sense-less one, wouldn't be able to get around very well without Angel to lead him. Plus, he was about eighty-seven years old. It was a very sad occasion that made Ruthie cry and Ray sleep a lot. Sad, indeed.

Synchronicity led me to a fun video that shows how people can look like their dogs, or just look like a dog, whether he or she owns it or not.





Seeing this made me wonder, if Ruthie and Ray were to get dogs that look like themselves, what would they be? Here is what I came up with:


Ruthie



Ray

Good luck, you guys.




September 18, 2007

Soft, Silky, and Manageable...Not

Time to get a haircut. As much as I like a cute hairstyle and looking fabulous in a fresh coif, going to my stylist is way up there on my list of things to procrastinate on.

I've had the same stylist for many years and have gotten several positive comments on the style of my hair. But I let it go until I look like a shaggy Q-Tip, my naturally curly hair in my eyes as it blows up at the slightest hint of humidity.

When I feel like hurting myself for procrastinating on making a hair appointment I look at pictures like these. Suddenly I don't feel so hideous after all. Coming to see you Thursday, Lynnie!







September 13, 2007

Less Is More...Really

Could there be a more annoying ad on TV? Today I woke up with this song in my head. While I took my bath my mind's ear heard "a little bit more a little bit more..." While I got dressed my mind's ear heard "a little bit more a little bit more..." While I drove into work my mind's ear heard "a little bit more a little bit more..." And now, after being at work for two hours and my mind's ear hearing "a little bit more a little bit more..." I compound the problem by searching for the damn thing on YouTube so I can share my misery with the rest of the world. Not only is the song bad, the ad features bad spelling. What message is that giving to the young people of today?

And what's with the bald chick?


September 07, 2007

Brush With Fame

One day while Boyfriend and I were visiting the Minnesota State Fair we had a brush with fame. Well, fame might not really be the word for it. These two are local celebrities. Well, celebrities might not really be the word for it either. They have a cable access show in Minneapolis a la Wayne's World, only these two show country and western videos. I spotted them as we were perusing the seed art in the ag/hort building (agriculture/horticulture for you tourists). Boyfriend was so excited he had to go up and shake their hands. OK, I admit, I did too. Viva and Jerry. Stars in their own right.


This is Viva.



This is Jerry. Notice the little happy face drawn on his thumb.

These two are stereotypical Minnesotans. I'm sure they were inspiration for the dialect used in the movie Fargo. My descriptions cannot do them justice. I've included an amateur video I found just to give you a taste of what they're all about. Kinda makes you want to pull out the one-hitter and enjoy their magic to the fullest.


August 30, 2007

Minnesota State Fair, 2007

I've been so busy going to the fair I haven't had time to write about it. The weather has been perfect - warm enough to wear shorts, yet a hint of autumn in the air. The evenings are chilly, which makes for good snuggling while watching the fireworks.

The 10-In-1 tent was back again this year.* The freak-show-turned-human-oddities is always worth the five tickets to get in. (What does five tickets cost? Who knows? Taking five tickets off of your sheet of twenty makes the attraction seem less expensive than paying actual money to get in. Same goes for the rides. Would you pay $4 to go on a ride that lasts a minute and a half? Would you pay 4 tickets?) They have a bally** and everything. Poobah eats fire. Melinda swallows swords. Come on in and see more. How could you not?



This year the 10-in-1 had Zamora, the woman who turns into a gorilla right before your very eyes. I was pretty disappointed in this cheap knock-off of Zambora, the gorilla girl of years past. Don't ever confuse the two. The illusion of Zambora utilized dim lights and a hidden projector showing the actual transformation of the girl into a gorilla. The illusion of Zamora simply uses a lot of dry ice smoke and a trap door. Zambora scared the hell out of me. Zamora made me laugh.





This banner is for the original gorilla girl. It doesn't actually say "Zambora," but trust me, that was her name. She was alive on the inside, and the illusion was truly fascinating.














This is the banner for Zamora, the current gorilla girl. It says, "see her change," which you definitely do not. But since when do carnivals honor truth in advertising?







I'm very grateful for my nephews, who are now the only ones I'm able to go on the rides with. I've loved to ride the rides forever, and the spinnier, the higher, and the up-side-downer the ride is, the more I like it. However, this year I found my equilibrium to be a little off, and during the rides I couldn't keep my eyes open without hurling. It was kind of sad, and I hope this inner ear or circulation, or whatever problem is rectified by the time I go on more rides. They were fun, though, even though I couldn't watch while I was riding.

One evening we were fortunate to catch the concert at the Leinenkugel Lodge free stage. Dennis DeYoung. Yes, Dennis Frickin'-DeYoung. For free! It was a great concert, and he played for an hour and a half. Everyone loved it from the kids who have no idea who Styx were, to the middle-agers who grew up with Styx, to the oldsters who don't even like that rock-and-roll music. Fab. Absolutely fab. At the end he had the whole audience standing up and singing Sail Away. Dennis sounded as good as ever.



Come on down to the Minnesota State Fair. You just never know what you'll see.


* 10-In-1: Ten acts under one tent.

** Bally: a small demonstration on the outside of the tent designed to lure you into the tent to see more.

August 23, 2007

Are You A Fair-y?

Today begins the 2007 edition of the Minnesota State Fair. Of course it is only the most important event of the year, at least in my family. Even Boyfriend likes going to the fair. (He avoided the fair like the plague for many years. As a boy he would attend with Faux Ma and Faux Pa, which had a fun factor equivalent to a burning stick in the eye. Once he discovered that the key to a good time at the fair was the company he kept, he has come to anticipate the event weeks in advance.)

I've been going to the fair my whole life. My dad has worked at the fair for over forty years here:




My piggish, dykey, doofus of an ex-sister-in-law works here:

She is the one negative thing associated with the Minnesota State Fair. She's like a train wreck in that we go out of our way to see if we can spot her (which isn't hard to do; she's the one who looks like a white version of Shirley from the show What's Happenin'). When we do spot her, we stop and stare for a while, until she notices us staring and runs in the other direction out of fear and/or shame. Then we mosey on our way. I hate her.

I don't know what it's like at other state fairs around the country, but Minnesota is known for its food-on-a-stick. The whole concept has gotten a little out of hand, and I've pretty much disregarded new items-on-a-stick ever since they came up with macaroni-and-cheese-on-a-stick. However, the deep fried Twinkie-on-a-stick is just about the most delectable confection ever invented. They take a Twinkie and spear it with the likes of a corndog stick. Then they dip it in what is something like a crepe batter. Next they fry the whole thing. Fruity toppings are offered, but I prefer a dusting of powdered sugar. It runs a close race with Tom Thumb Donuts (which I've been eating for over forty years) for best food on the fairgrounds.




New food at the fair includes Spamburgers and Spam Curds (spam and cheese battered and deep fried) {no way}, Kool-Aid Pickles {maybe}, pork knuckle sandwiches {pig cartilage? You've got to be kidding!}, and Uffda Brats (Norwegian sausage wrapped in lefse) {Hate lefse, much to Faux Ma's dismay.}.

I'll be posting more about the fair, and maybe even posting some pics after I make my first visit tomorrow. Can you just smell the hot oil and cow manure? WooHoo!

August 06, 2007

Do That To Me One More Time



This is just too much. I think it's irresponsible and selfish to have this many kids, I don't care if you're a millionaire political/real estate hound. Mr. Dugger has aptly earned the name "Jim Bob" with his hillbillian wankie poking at his wife every night like something out of Deliverance, and his wife ought to know better; a woman simply doesn't have to take this kind of abuse. Read more about the story here.
Apparently this couple has interpreted the Bible as saying you're supposed to have as many kids as you possibly can within the span of fertility. And while the Duggers could be perfectly wonderful parents raising perfectly sound children, I think it's just wrong to purposefully try to over populate the earth for religious, economic, or social reasons. On the other hand, would I want families to be limited in number as determined by, say, a government? No.
I personally know someone who has twelve kids. She's learning disabled, as is her husband. Her children are dirty and ill-kempt. Money is very tight and her mother comments frequently to anyone who will listen how she worries for the health and safety of those children. This woman doesn't claim to be breeding this way because Jesus told her to. She's breeding because she's always liked babies. When she was a little girl and her siblings were born, she wanted them as her own children. Her mother told her when she was grown up she could have as many babies as she wanted. Poor idiot didn't think this through, as she and her husband are barely able to provide for their clan. She claims to be happy, though.
So, on the one hand you have Jim Bob with his millions of dollars and seventeen kids. On the other hand you have this other couple and their twelve kids. That's twenty-seven kids between two couples. It's weird and socially irresponsible regardless of being able to financially provide for those kids or not. Too many people is a burden for this earth.
I have a difficult time articulating what a strong distaste I have for couples who can't or won't stop having children. Why do I feel so adamantly? And when you have sex that often with the likes of rat-faced Jesus freaks like Jim Bob Dugger or bloat-faced emotional and intellectual midgets such as my acquaintance's husband, wouldn't you kind of lose interest? If you're squeezing out seventeen kids, you know old Jim Bob is shaking the headboard way more often than most, and his wife Fertile Mertle is just lying there and taking it like a dutiful wife. I wonder if she fakes orgasm, or if her orgasm, real or faked, is of any consequence at all.
I think that's it. It's not so much the number of kids as it is the whole sex thing. I would be repulsed to have sex with a dullard like my acquaintance's husband, as would I be repulsed to have sex with a man with only Jesus on his mind.
I can't say it enough: it's just weird.

August 02, 2007

Bridge Collapse in Minneapolis



There's not much I can say about this, except how grateful that no members of my family, none of my friends, nor I were involved in the tragedy. Investigations and searches are still in the early stages, but you can have a look at the local paper's report(s) here. And you can see the Minnesota Department of Transportation video of the bridge actually collapsing here.
Send nice vibes this way, for everyone affected by this bizarre occurrence.

July 31, 2007

I SO Don't Have A Foot Fetish

I've broken my own rule today, in that my ugly old feet are hanging out in public. At the office. That's just disgusting. I hate looking at other people's feet, why in the world would I think they want to look at mine?

There are a couple of answers to this. A) My feet aren't really that ugly, and B) people probably aren't noticing my feet the way I would notice theirs. I project my hatred of feet onto others. I mean, really, do you like going to the work place, the restaurant, or the movie theater and seeing this:



Ishy, veiny, hairy feet. Gross. People who have been walking for more than six months should not put their feet out for all to see. Feet are not attractive in the least, unless they look like this:

When I see feet like this, not only do I smile, I want to actually put them to my face and nibble on them.

But alas, my ugly adult feet are out for all to see, and I am ashamed. At least my sandals fit. Faux Ma wears sandals that are either too short or too wide and her big toe hangs over the end of the sandal. She has actually told me that isn't a bad thing, most people do it, and most people won't even notice. Perhaps. But I notice, and it looks dumb.

So, you people of the summer, I say to you, don't wear sandals, flip-flops, or bare feet unless you have tolerable-looking feet. And who's to say what's tolerable? Me, of course. And ladies, the french manicure on the feet is almost as dumb as Faux Ma's hillbilly toes hanging over the edge of her sandals. If you all promise to quit subjecting me to your hideous feet, I'll go home and put some socks on too.




July 19, 2007

Yet Another Episode In The Dramatic Life Of Oprah

I heard today that Oprah's dog, Gracie, died due to rubber ball chokage. Yep, choked on a rubber ball. Apparently the Oprah's dog walker and security guard tried to revive the two-year-old golden retriever to no avail.

First of all, I'm not a pet owner because A) I don't have a dog walker and other miscellaneous staff to care for any animals I might own, and B) I don't understand why anyone would want to clean up poop and barf and other bodily fluids of a species other than one's self.

Second of all, I have come to loathe Oprah and her phoney-ass persona.

Therefore, the fact that a dog under her care has choked on its own plaything isn't the least bit sad to me. What makes it better was reading
this little synopsis on the whole ordeal. Better still are the comments that follow what is supposed to be a heartbreaking portrayal of the loss of a beloved family pet.

Gigi writes: "What kind of stupid ass dog chokes to death on a ball?" I say, kudos to Gigi.

Jen responds to Gigi's comment with: "Hey GiGi, apparently you either have never had a dog or dont pay a damn bit of attention to your own. Golden Retrievers are very appropriately named. All they want to do is retrieve and if you had one or was even the slightest bit knowledgeable you would know that they are constantly carrying around a ball, toy, stick or something in thier mouth. It could have very easily choked on a ball if it was playing with a ball that was too small or perhaps was laying on its back while holding it with two front paws which I have seen numerous dogs do. Mallinformed people just spewing things out of thier mouth without facts only enhances thier ignorance. Further, that was a very heartless thing to say." I can only point out to Jen that her ignorance is enhanced by her horrible grammar and use of the non-word "mallinformed."

JenJen caught my attention with her response to the story: "Yeah sad. -- but I stopped reading after I got to "I ran out to the dog walker..." Barf. These celebs that can't change their own kids diapers or walk their own damn dogs....Barf. " The repetitive use of "barf" in this simple response is no less than hilarious, especially when followed by a simple period. Barf. I love it.

The last noteable comment to the sad story about Oprah's dead dog comes from Christine who writes: "Our Golden, Gaia died last July. It was awful. He was my first dog and I didn't realize how much it would affect me. My heart ached for so long. I will say a prayer for Oprah. I'm sure Gracie and my Gaia are at Rainbow's Bridge playing right now. " Yeah, doggy heaven. Rainbow's Bridge. I'm absolutely sure of it.

June 26, 2007

Frozen Food - The Path To Family Unity

OK, I’m not kidding about this. Stouffer’s has TV commercials encouraging families to have dinner together. These dinners should be a time when the family can talk about their days and spend quality time with each other. What a novel concept, eating a meal together as a family. Without the TV on. For those of you who really do think this is a novel concept, Stouffer’s, makers of all those wholesome, processed, frozen foods has developed a section on their website where families can refer to a list of conversation topics to help them get going. Really. I’m not kidding.

I know I sound like a really old person when I say, what the hell is wrong with people these days? Dinner time was when you told your parents about the D you were getting in math. It was the place you learned phrases like “…oh for cry eye” used by Dad while he talked about his coworkers. It was where you complained about schoolmates after which your mother made you say three nice things about that person you hate so much. How can you have dinner and not talk to your family? How can you not know what to say to them? The only answer to those questions is that families don’t have dinner together to begin with. Families are no longer a unit of people living in one house. They are merely anonymous separates.

For the life of me I can’t understand how a family becomes that way. Parents should not be so busy that they can’t take two hours out of twenty-four to prepare, serve, and clean up a dinner meal. Children should not be so overextended with extracurricular activities that they have no time to spend at home for a decent meal. Why wouldn’t spending time together as a family be a priority from day one? What’s the sense of creating a family if you have no intention of nurturing it and embracing it?

In addition to that, how are children supposed to learn how to maintain a household if they aren’t home to see it done and be taught how to do it by a parent(s) who knows the ins and outs of cooking and cleaning. If you aren’t getting together for a meal, one meal, during the day, how will a child know that food can be cooked on a stovetop, in an oven, even in a microwave instead of calling in a request to a restaurant or shouting an order into the clown’s mouth. Doing the dishes after a meal is part of the package too. Back in my day we didn’t have a dishwasher, so we took turns drying dishes while Mom washed them. What’s wrong with assigning different after dinner clean-up chores to kids? Nothing. Nothing I say!

The whole Stouffer’s thing made me depressed. It emphasized the demise of the American family. It emphasized the reality of domestically-ignorant children and priority-challenged parents. It made me sad that little kids aren’t having the experience of sitting around the kitchen table with their parents and siblings, trying new food, laughing with each other, arguing with each other, and learning about each other, all which enforces a sense of belonging.

While I agree with Stouffer’s in that families should share dinner time together, I think it’s a very sad commentary on our society that a frozen food company can use the pitiful state of the American family unit as a market for their products. Face it, if we were a nation that put more priority on developing healthy family relationships and healthy families in general, and less priority on materialism and competition, we would have no need for frozen food, much less frozen food representatives telling us how to create a dinnertime scenario involving the people with whom we share a house.



Mmmmm, tasty.

June 11, 2007

Spare Me The Baby Talk

Mommy blogs are some of my favorite blogs to read. Except for days like today, when I’m totally nauseated by them.

This could have everything to do with the fact that I am not a mommy and cannot relate in the least. Or could it be that mommies today are oblivious to the fact that woman have been bearing and raising children for, well, eons.

I can accept the possibility that our mothers, and their mothers before them might have done a little better job had they possessed some kind of emotional outlet such as, say, blogging. But tell me, does sitting at a computer and venting frustrations over toilet training (or lack thereof), toddler diet (or lack thereof), or annoying TV favorites of the child actually make one a better parent?

Then there’s the mommy blogger who doesn’t so much complain about her little one as much as gush embarrassingly over him, as though never has there been created such a perfect creature. Oh I know, every mother thinks her child is the most beautiful, smartest, most clever and funny. But think of it from a non-parent’s point of view. All babies, toddlers, and small children are pretty much the same.

I’m not saying a parent shouldn’t be proud. I think parents should treasure their children. But it might be a little unrealistic to expect the rest of humankind of acknowledge your childbirth, your parenthood, your baby as the be-all end-all in the history of procreation.

Case in point: baby talk. It’s simply delightful to listen to a child learning how to speak. In person. From the child. There is nothing cute about an adult person writing the sentence, “wook Mommy, dats my bwankie,” as she relays a story regarding her child. I hate to say it, but all of the cuteness of that kind of talk lies in actually hearing it. Phonetic words written by a smitten parent are cloying and obnoxious.

There’s one mommy blog I can’t help but read. She can be somewhat entertaining, but every time I open the blog up I scold myself for bothering. She’s one of those who writes in the baby talk. She also has a little name for her child. The Poo. Not The Pooh, as in Whinnie. The Poo. As in shit. Anonymity is a good thing when you’re broadcasting your personal life all over the internets, and I don’t blame mommy for not giving the child’s actual name (notwithstanding the fact that her pictures are constantly plastered all over the blog), but to give your child a name like The Poo. Does she use that name for her child in real life, or is it just her little internets name? Either way, I say yikes.

And so there it is. My opinions don’t amount to a hill of beans compared to the popularity of all the mommy blogs out there. They’re definitely being read, even by the likes of me who thinks a baby who isn’t weaned from the breast by the time he has teeth or a toddler who isn’t potty trained by the time she is three will have some serious emotional hell to pay when they grow up. Could it be possible that baby would have been weaned and potty trained sooner if mommy had spent her time helping little junior succeed in these areas instead of blogging about it?

Just call me the bitter, old, barren one. Sour grapes. Not blessed with any bundles of joy. Hey, if I can’t blog about my adorable little toddler, I’ll blog about those of you who do.

June 06, 2007

Waiting Downtown

I’m sitting outdoors in downtown St. Paul, waiting for the theatre doors to open and for my theatre companions to arrive. I sat in the wrong place and within ten minutes have decided it’s time to move. The peacefulness of watching the pigeons has been disturbed by a barrage of f-bombs being dropped right next to me. I’m not a prude, but these people are making me sick with their little lower-class drama and urban profanity. I’ve got to get out of here.

Ten minutes later: Okay, that wasn’t so hard. I know I’m a racist when I say certain people of a certain cultural background come off as being the most brash, obscene, and obnoxious ingredient in the melting pot. I’m not so blind to think all dark-skinned people with pants hanging below their butts are this way, nor would I say people with fair skin and high-water pants are incapable of being brash, obscene, and obnoxious, but there’s no denying that the people I was sitting next to a little while ago definitely fit a stereotype. Thank you, MTV.

Back to the city. It’s really a shame how it has dwindled. It’s still a lovely city, but the downtown area pretty much dies after 5:30 p.m. when all the employees go home to the suburbs, especially on the east side of town where I work. Tonight I’m attending a play on the west side of town, a whole six blocks from the east side. This side of town has actual restaurants instead of fast food caves nestled in the skyway path. There are three theaters and actual retail shops on the west side of town. The people who work on the west side of town are professional corporate types, as opposed to those on the east side like me – the government schmucks. People over on the west side dress in jackets and ties, dresses and pantyhose. East-enders wear the same clothes at work as they would if they were cleaning out their attics.

But there I go again, stereotyping. I’m a well-dressed government professional. I fit right in over hear on the west side. And now I’ve sequestered myself in the enclosed patio area of a restaurant for a refreshing libation that requires money, which turns out to be a metaphor for the separation of class in our society. You see, despite the fact that I work on the east side of town, my presentation and demeanor definitely fit into the west side scene, while the guy who was compelled to sing Private Dancer at the top of his lungs to a passer-by and announced to his homeboys that he wished he had some money cuz he’s horny is positioned on the west side of town, but is a total misfit. An intimidating misfit, but a misfit nonetheless. Funny how stuff happens that way.

*****************

Okay, I misspoke. I totally disregarded the Mears Park area over on the east side of downtown St. Paul. There are actual restaurants there too. I guess I work in what could be considered mid-town. The part of town where they turn historic buildings into contemporary eyesores. Where the pastimes of the working people are softball and bowling as opposed to concerts and theatre. Yeah, mid-town.

Oh how I crave the cosmopolitan life; how sad I am that I have been sucked into the mid-town-to-suburbia lifestyle.

June 05, 2007

Hangin' With Those Smart Peeps

I once knew a person who referred to this particular style of male facial hair ...

... as pork chops.

Something To Ponder

Why do people point to their wrist when they ask what time it is, but don’t point to their crotch when asking where the bathroom is?

April 28, 2007

Marriage Minus Shared Life Experiences

I got into work at my usual time this morning and went about my business of civil servanting. Around 8:00 I noticed that my boss, who was in her office when I arrived, had left for the day. Her desk was cleared and the office lights were turned off. It isn’t unusual that she come in for two or three or four hours and leave, so I didn’t think anything of it.

It was about 8:45 when I stopped by the office of my coworker Teddy to inquire about the mental stability of another worker with whom I had been having some conflict. I found out that the other coworker is indeed emotionally challenged and therefore the blame lay with him regarding our conflict. That gave me a very special feeling of satisfaction. Then Teddy asked if I knew about Bossy. “No,” I told her.

“She had Moo D. take her to the hospital because she was having trouble seeing. She called the eye doctor but they wouldn’t give her an appointment, so she decided she better go to the emergency room. She thought her retina was detaching.”

“Wow,” I said. “Did someone call Scruffy (Bossy’s husband)?” Teddy didn’t know.

Teddy and I sat around and discussed the latest office gossip for a while. Finally Moo D. returned from her trip to the hospital and subsequent breakfast. Bossy wasn’t with her. I motioned for Moo D. to join us so she could fill us in on the details of Bossy. Moo D. didn’t know anything, just that she took Bossy down to the county hospital emergency room and was instructed by Bossy to return to work.

Moo D. then returned to her own office to find a voicemail message sent from Bossy. It was a fairly long message, yet Moo D. couldn’t understand any of it. She said it sounded like Bossy had the receiver pressed against her chin or something. I suggested that she call the hospital emergency room and leave a message for Bossy to call again with her message. Moo D. did just that.

I returned to my civil servanting for several hours and was surprised when I heard and smelled microwave popcorn being made in the office kitchen. Bossy is the only one who makes microwave popcorn at 1:30 p.m. I went to investigate and sure enough, there was Bossy with her dilated pupils hiding behind squinting eyelids that protected them from the blinding florescent lights that grace not only the kitchen area, but the whole building.

“What are you doing here?” I asked Bossy.

“I wasn’t going to waste a whole sick day just because of a trip to the emergency room,” she responded.

Apparently Bossy wasn’t experiencing a detaching retina, but vitreal detachment. Look it up. I don’t really understand how it is different from retinal detachment, so I can’t explain. She spent the rest of the day working in her office with the lights off to protect her dilated pupils, complaining that she couldn’t read anything. Ninety percent of her job entails reading, yet, she wouldn’t just go home. “…no use spending a whole sick day…”

After Bossy left at the end of her shift, Teddy, Moo D., and I discussed the situation some more.

Me: Did she ever tell Scruffy she went to the hospital?

Moo: I don’t know

Me: Did you ask her about the message she left?

Moo: She wanted me to order some part for her washing machine.

Yikes, I thought.

Me: I guess Scruffy wasn’t called, or else he could have ordered the washing machine part. He works from home, you know.

The whole situation left me stunned. Here is Bossy, so afraid she is losing her vision that she wants a coworker to drive her to the E.R. She would rather be accompanied by a coworker in her fear than by her husband who is more than available to be by her side as he works from home and is his own boss. And she, in her fear of blindness, can think of nothing but concealing this information from her husband so vehemently that she asked a coworker, instead of her husband, to order the ever so unimportant washing machine part. What’s wrong with her? What’s wrong with Scruffy? Why can’t Bossy let go of ordering the washing machine part while she’s in the E.R.?

I found out the next day that Bossy never did tell her husband she went to the hospital. She also told me he’ll never find out about it because she is the only one who sees and pays the bills in the house. Why is it so important to her that he is left ignorant about her health?

“That’s too much excitement for him,” she told me with a smile.

I can’t help but wonder about all the reasons people marry. Bossy obviously doesn’t respect her husband enough to share little snippets of her life, like going to the emergency room, with him. Her priorities lie in washing machine parts and keeping her whereabouts and health a secret from the man she married. Did her relationship start out this way, or did it mutate into something that appears to be as far from intimacy any two people can be?

Upon further consideration, I realize it is entirely possible Scruffy is incapable for one reason or another. Perhaps he has gone soft in the head, and instead of being Bossy’s partner he has become another child-figure for her to care for, or perhaps something like an aging parent. I guess it’s not up to me to judge their relationship. But in my heart of hearts I know Bossy is an obsessive codependent who needs to be in charge of everything at work and at home, and that Scruffy is a mealy-mouthed swish who will fall into any position Bossy demands. It doesn’t tax my imagination to consider them a completely asexual couple; Scruffy is probably subservient in hopes of sex, and Bossy probably withholds sex until everything is absolutely perfect, which it never will be. Sex is the motivation, but never the outcome. Ever.

Romantic dynamics never cease to amaze me.

April 15, 2007

Say It Like No One's Listening

I just saw Office Space for the 2nd time, and I must say, it got me a little agitated. I'm a government worker, so I don't have to contend with corporate lingo too much at work; however, it has metastisized into general society and I find it utterly condescending and hollow. A person who speaks coroporate lingo is generally protecting himself from an ass kicking while licking the ass of the person one rung higher on the corporate ladder. Corporate lingo is false, pretentious, and takes much more effort than if one were to just come out and say what he means.

So, on behalf of all corporate cogs and the rest of us who suffer the fall out of corporate lingo and political correctness I say to the leaders of our corporations,

I'm going to have to ask you to go ahead and take the lead on championing Project Shut The Fuck Up.

March 26, 2007

Naming Dust Bunnies

My workspace is disgusting. Not my workspace at home. Of course that is as clean and tidy as I want it to be. Even if it’s not clean and tidy I don’t mind so much because I know I’m responsible for maintaining it any way I want. I’m talking about my workspace at my day job. The place where I spend forty hours out of my week to earn enough money to make the house payment and pay for the other necessities of life. The workspace my government job has provided for me. It’s disgusting.

And why is my workspace so disgusting, you ask? Because it doesn’t get cleaned. I have the capacity to rationalize just about anything I set my mind to, but the disgustingly dirty workspace is something I can’t get my head around no matter how hard I try to twist it. Here’s the thing: The building, from which my government agency rents space, provides a cleaning service for its tenants. Sounds good, but hold on. As we live in an age of technology and litigation I found out that the cleaning people are not allowed to clean desk tops.

WTF? OK, these cleaning people get paid. I assume they might even belong to a union. I also assume the company for which they work is bonded and insured. I lastly assume that I assume too much because the person who comes into our suite every day, as personable and lovely a lady as she is, is only required to empty waste baskets and push the carpet sweeper around on the floors. I think she brings in an actual vacuum once a week. Anything above waist level is off limits to the cleaning person. It’s not her fault; she’s just doing what she’s told. Because people don’t want their stuff touched, stolen, accidentally poked or prodded, the cleaning people aren’t allowed to clean desk tops. Because some cleaning people have been known to touch, steal, poke and prod the stuff in the offices they clean, they aren’t allowed to clean the desk tops. Because the government has invested thousands of dollars in computer equipment for their workers and they want only their workers to be blamed if something goes awry with that equipment the cleaning people aren’t allowed to clean the desk tops.

So here I sit at my work station, a work station visited and viewed by the general public, pretending it’s not my problem that there is enough dust around me to choke an army. It is my problem. I can’t stand it. I can’t stand the fact that my “bullet-proof” window is covered with hand and nose prints. I can’t stand it that the hundreds of wires giving my computer and video monitor equipment life are so covered with dust they have turned into what look like massive strands of dreadlocks twisting and commingling behind the equipment. I can’t stand it that my phone has black smudges on it. I can’t stand that between the keys of my keyboard reside the crumbs of past-eaten muffins and the husks of long gone popcorn. It’s disgusting, I say. And while I can avoid the crumbs in the keyboard and black smudges on the phone by not eating muffins and washing my hands more often, I still have an entire workspace that is covered with dust, my boss’s coffee mug rings, and all the grease and grime that accompanies actually touching things.

The cleaning people aren’t allowed to clean, and I will go completely insane if I have to work day and in day out in squalor. The only solution to the problem would be if I clean up the filth myself. Not only do I think it’s unfair to make me dust and clean my employment workspace after I spend so much time keeping my private home space clean, I will remind you that I am a government worker. I get paid with your tax dollars. I just don’t think it’s right that I spend my work time cleaning my workspace instead of doing the job I’m paid to do, especially when there are hired cleaning people here every day. I also don’t think it’s right that I’m expected to work among so many dust bunnies that I have taken to naming them.

Sorry guys, I’m going to have to come in to work in my jeans and a t-shirt one day this week and undertake the job of cleaning my desk top, computer equipment, “bullet-proof” glass window, cabinets, and miscellaneous supplies like staplers and tape dispensers instead of actually doing my job. All at the expense of the tax payer.

It just seems wrong, but do you blame me?

March 19, 2007

Why Is That?

There is nothing sexier than a man on a stage playing the electric guitar and wearing a wedding ring.

March 17, 2007

Resistance Is Futile

It's a foggy, overcast afternoon, damp and chilly. I decided to make a day of experimenting with glass painting. I hopped in the car and went down to my local craft store to pick up a couple bottles of glass paint. As I walked toward the store entrance from the parking lot, I saw a woman heading toward the same store entrance with her pre-teenage daughter. How lovely, I thought. The sight of them took me back to my childhood where dreary, lazy days would be spent crafting under the supervision of my mother. Bonding. Mental and creative stimulation. Family quality time. Then I saw ... one of those stupid ear phones stuck into the mother's head.

Now I'm for advances in technology and all that. I don't see anything wrong with the corporate types walking around downtown juggling cell phones, laptop computers, blackberries, and that cup of Starbuck's cappuccino. But here was a mother. With her child. On a Saturday afternoon. What could possibly be so important that she would need a phone attached to her head while going to the craft store?

While the constant phone communication gives the facade of keeping people connected, it is becoming nothing more than something to distract from what we are currently doing and who we are currently with, even if we are alone. There is nothing wrong with walking through the mall alone with a song in your head instead of incessantly chatting on the phone. Is it really necessary to have dinner with someone in a restaurant while talking on the phone to someone else? How unnatural it seems to see someone having a phone conversation while hiking through a state park. Just recently Boyfriend and I went to a theater production of White Christmas, and a couple seats down from me sat a person who had to periodically check cell phone messages during the performance, the LED lights from the instrument illuminating the entire section in which we sat.

Yes, technology is a good thing. Even I own a cell phone, which I carry with me at all times in case of emergency. I can't remember the last time I turned it on. Yes, it is possible to carry a cell phone without even turning it on. Get those stupid things out of your ears. You look like a damn Borg.



I ask you, what exactly is the difference?

March 07, 2007

Tysheeka

There is a woman in my office I refer to as Tysheeka. Tysheeka is a trainee. I don’t expect much from trainees as they are fresh to the business of social services. Unlike most of her fellow trainees, Tysheeka has been around the block a few times and has a few years on her. While I don’t expect much in the way of trainees knowing the social service game, I do expect someone of maturity (over 35) to know things like courtesy and professionalism.

She floats in and out of the office on her own schedule, and I’m not really sure how she gets away with it. On several occasions she has forgotten her card key and has troubled me, intake person, with her whining and excuse making while I open the locked doors for her. One day a guy came to our office with a bag. He was delivering lunch. To Tysheeka. Tysheeka was nowhere to be found to accept the delivered lunch. After a few minutes Tysheeka turns up and commences to do her business with the lunch delivery guy in the reception area of our office. Oh wait, except she is having trouble paying for it. The lunch delivery guy asks me if I have change for a $10. What’s wrong with this picture? I asked myself. Well, A) Tysheeka should get off her fat ass and get her lunch herself, like everyone else in the office does, B) if Tysheeka can’t get off her fat ass and get her own lunch, she should be here to accept the delivered lunch the minute it is delivered, C) if Tysheeka is going to accept a delivered lunch she should have the correct money to pay for it, and D) lunches are not delivered to an office that is open to the public needing social services, at least not this one. I told Tysheeka that lunch delivery was unacceptable and she was all, like, “I didn’t mean for him to come into the office. I was waiting out in the hallway for a long time and only left for a minute.” I told her I saw the receipt on the lunch bag and it said our suite number as the delivery site, not “in the hallway of that one building.” Of course she was aghast that I would have the nerve to tell her what office policy was. Not only that, twenty minutes after receiving the delivered lunch I saw her leaving the office for the day.

It’s been a while since I’ve had any conflict with Tysheeka. I think she’s learned to avoid me at all costs, including crouching in the hallways on those days she forgets her card key, preferring to wait for someone to go in or out of the secured employee entrance rather than to come to the main door and ask me to let her in. However, the other day I simply could not believe my eyes. There is Tysheeka, walking to the printer to fetch her printed materials, in her bare feet. What’s wrong with this picture? I asked myself again. A) It’s winter in Minnesota. There is three feet of snow on the ground and temperatures are in the teens. Because of that, fashion sense and common sense would dictate that one at least wear socks/hose, and B) this is a place of business. We don’t walk around like Appalachian hillbillies in our bare feet.


Bare fucking feet in the office. Who the hell does that?! Tysheeka. Because she’s entitled.

March 01, 2007

High Fashion

I’m the first one to admit that I am a very boring dresser. The most exotic thing I ever wear is a black broomstick skirt and a gauzy, flowing top a la Stevie Nicks. With that type of outfit I’ll wear many long necklaces and hope I look like the bohemian artist I want to be. But generally I can be seen in a pair of jeans and a sweater. If I have to look extra professional at my job I’ll wear a simple skirt and blouse. I’m definitely not cutting edge, nor do I spend a great deal of time or money building my wardrobe.

There’s a person in my office who is a medical professional. She lives with another medical professional. With their two incomes combined, they make more money than God. They live in a mansion which is decorated, I’ve heard, like a museum. While her special man friend is quite unpretentious, at least in appearance, the woman who works in my office is struts around in the most bizarre clothes I’ve ever seen. Apparently she only shops in Milan, Paris, and New York. Oh, and I forgot to mention, this woman is built like an Oompa Loompa. I’ve never seen such fat knees or thick ankles. She doesn’t wear high fashion clothes well, but holds her head up high, knowing that she is far more superior to the rest of us schmucks who wear St. John’s Bay.

Funny thing is, I think I look better in my humble clothes than she looks in her high-falootin’ clothes from France. My assumption is this woman envisions herself looking like the runway models when she wears these outrageous clothes. I took a look on the Elle website and found that not only do Oompa Loompa-looking women look weird in high-fashion designer clothing, so do the models. Check it out:



First of all, what's with the Marcel Marceau look? And that hair. I didn't realize hair bumps were in.


This dress looks like a giant balloon valance. I never really liked those on windows, and wouldn't dream of wearing one as a piece of clothing.





This dress reminds me of something the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland would wear. It's downright cartoonish. I know I'm a simple midwestern girl, but really, how many of you out there have an occasion to wear such an outfit?

While the woman in my office doesn't wear anything quite so "elegant," her clothes are equally laughable. I wonder how these woman can take themselves seriously. Maybe they don't. Maybe they are putting on their own personal show for the rest of us and are taking great pleasure in watching our reactions. If that is the case, Ms. Rich Pants is getting her money's worth every time I pass, because there is no way in hell I'm not going to raise an eyebrow at a middle-aged woman (Oompa Loompa) wearing furry platform shoes with her lime green capri pants, both which draw attention to those ample ankles.

Say I'm sour grapes if you want. I may laugh at these fashions because I can't afford them. I may laugh at these fashions because my lifestyle is less than flamboyant. But most likely it's just that I don't get it. Do you?