Friday, October 30, 2009

Trick or Treat

Colleagues came to the rescue in the party photo arena. I snatched the pictures of the fun food to share here. Longer account is in going green.

First, my favorite fruit salad, Demon Eyeballs!
Halloween Party Food, lychees stuffed with cherries

Less scary, but the winning food, ghostly meatloaf
Halloween Party Food, meatloaf frosted with mashed potatoes

My sister's fingers! (I went as a green witch)
Halloween Party Food, green breadsticks with almond fingernails

And the hardest thing to actually dig into...
Kitty Litter Cake!
Halloween Party Food, animal crackers, tootsie rolls, and german chocolate but looks like cat poop

Enjoy, enjoy!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Phantom Tonsilitis

I'm not sure if I caught the office bug from the colleague's Halloween party or if I was a little sick last week and relapsed this week, or if I just really, really, really want a sabbatical. But I've been out sick for a couple days this week, mostly sleeping. And trying not to puke. My main symptom seems to be feeling nauseous. I'm tired, my throat hurts where my tonsils used to be, I get a little dizzy at odd times, and I'm sucking down papaya pills like there's no tomorrow. The papaya enzymes are working their magic, but they wear off. I feel good for 4 hours or so, then I try to remember to pop more papaya (and fail), then feel horrible for an hour or so then feel ok for a while, then horrible. The grims sort of sneak up on me and catch me by surprise.

Which is to say that I wore myself out today by going to work, then felt grim for a few hours, then felt just fine for a couple hours, and am now confused. I'm going to head to be "early" (it's 11...) and hope for the best. But when the only thing I feel like eating for dinner is beer (one Sam's winter), a dozen pringles and a couple of ritz crackers, it doesn't make me think I'm firing on all cylinders. To back that up, I also bought my first box of wine!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Going Green

I've continued my non-fiction reading into why and how people make decisions. I'm reading an insightful, if clunky, book right now that is basically despairing over our need/desire/expectataion to find the optimal solution for every decision. The despair is because when you give too much attention to every one of the hundreds, if not thousands, of decisions you make every day, the fear of making a sub-optimal choice can be paralyzing. I identified very much with his assessment of someone who spends too much time reaching for an ideal solution instead of settling for and being happy with a solution that is sufficient - it meets all necessary criteria and gets the job done. May not be the best, most creative, most elegant, shortest, longest, or cheapest solution, but it will serve and the solution doesn't require more than that.

I was reading this on tuesday when I realized that the reason I didn't have a halloween costume picked out for tonight's party was that I hadn't picked the *best* costume. I didn't want to recycle Medusa or the cactus. I didn't have time to make Maleficent - and I don't have the paint on latex the headdress, as I envision it, requires. (someday... someday!) I thought about what I did and didn't have available to me and decided just to be a regular ol witch. I had black clothes, I figured I could make a hat, and I had an embarrassment of green eye shadow just waiting to be used as foundation. Dressed up with a black cat pin, a black and silver bat and spiderweb table runner as a wrap, and a homemade hat, I made it to the party in costume, got positive feedback, and had a perfectly good time. I did not win best costume, but I did not feel the need to win, nor did this detract from my enjoyment. Top costume honors rightfully went to Jon&Kate+2 (my part asian co-worker and his blonde wife were rocking the look so well it was truly frightening) and Princess Leia (who came with Darth Vader and their two Jedi Knights with light sabers - yes, Darth dad had a light saber!).

I probably put more effort into the food which people enjoyed too. I made witches fingers and demon eyeballs. The fingers are breadsticks - dye dinner roll dough green, roll into small logs, slash twice across the middle for the knuckle and use egg wash to stick an almond half or slice on the end as a fingernail. (This dough wasn't as tasty as it could have been, but they tasted ok and looked really eerie.) The demon eyeballs are lychees and/or longans from a can stuffed with cherries from canned cherry pie filling. I put them together the night before and covered with lychee syrup, then today I transferred them to a decorative bowl with a few ice cubes and a squeeze of lemon. They go pretty well as a sangria-like addition to party wine.

My foodstuffs got honorable mention. Runner up was a fantastic box of kitty litter. In truth, devils food cake with crumbs on top to make it look like litter, decorated with distorted tootsie rolls. It was served in a (New!) cat box with a litter scoop. It looked tasty when sliced and put on a plate, but straight up, there was some serious "I don't wanna!" going on. Top food honors went to the J&K costume winners for a Good Eats meatloaf shaped into a ghost and 'frosted' with mashed potatoes. I'm not sure how they blackened the ketchup to draw on the eyes and I'm pretty sure that's a good thing not to know.

To sum up. My costume, while not the best ever, was actually pretty good. Certainly sufficient to the task. I really enjoyed doing the green face makeup, even if it did take a while to scrub off. My witch fingers, while not the best ever, looked fantastic and were sufficient to the task. The lychee eyeballs were fun and delicious. I have a couple pictures but not the means to upload them just now, so I went with yet another text only post. My costume probably looks better in your imagination anyway.

Let me know what costume ideas you've got for this year and if it's your best possible effort or just enough to get by and still enjoy yourself.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Suspect Taught Kids

Alright. That's it. I've had it. I'm sick to death of the implication that adult male interest in kids is sinister. Since when has teaching children become a bad thing?

There's a headline today saying:
"Ter.ror Suspect Taught Kids at Muslim School".
A disinterested observer unfamiliar with American mainstream media might not note anything wrong with conveying that information, but that disinterested observer would be wrong. The connotation and intended message of that headline in today's media is this:
"Oh Noes! Confirmed Evildoer is indoctrinating innocent (although possibly already-terrorist) baby children into the ways of terror at terrorist training camp for kids who-are-not-like-our-own-precious children. "

The theme continues the fear mongering around gay marriage: "Vote your neighbor's marriage to be illegal or your precious baby children will be taught to be gay, Gay, GAY!" No. They'll be taught that being gay is ok. Which it is. So if they ARE gay, they'll grow up with self esteem rather than self loathing. They might still loathe themselves for other reasons, but not for this preventable one.

Also concerning to me: "Local father coached young girls soccer! Neighbors outraged!" I rode on an airport shuttle with two guys discussing the nearly impossible logistics of coaching one's daughter's soccer team. They aren't allowed to hold practice unless one of the moms comes to practice and stays the whole time. It's hard enough to find volunteer coaches, let alone chaperones who don't have anything to do but keep a wary eye on the coach. That's not even including a traveling team coach who has stricter rules. My sense is that anyone who is a sufficiently good coach to be, let's face it, volunteering as a traveling team coach, is doing it for love of the game and bringing the love of the game to the next generation, not for the sexual thrills.


We have made or condoned this notion that all men have pedophilic intent when they show a natural and healthy interest in children. This notion is poisoning our society. We need to stop this notion and reverse it.

Kids grow up with the message that hugs from even their own father are inappropriate, and god forbid your neighbor's father takes an interest in your well being. Or a stranger stop your child from chasing a ball into the street by actually touching your precious. He may have to register for life with the police for such a grotesque breach of human nature. To me, this insidious negative message pervading daily life is much, much more damaging than the actual risk of someone coaching softball to have a look at the goods.

We as a collective seem to have lost the ability or desire (or both) to discriminate between good and bad touches, and good and bad desires. The good outnumber the bad so overwhelmingly that people should be given the benefit of the doubt until there is just cause to suspect otherwise, not the other way around.

Yes, throughout history and the present there are people (usually trusted people rather than strangers) who will and do harm children. If your kid suddenly doesn't like Uncle Lucius, or starts avoiding the park it could be because Uncle Lucius is rude and a new bully moved into the park, or it could be worse. Investigate, yes. Decry all men to the whole town? No. Keep your kid away from a particular activity or person you don't like until you figure it out? Yes. Make unfounded accusations about people who are trying to help? No. Assert that any contact with kids makes you a raving psycho? Also no. The existence of bad apples shouldn't keep us from eating apples. Fear of stranger danger shouldn't be pervasive in everyday life for most people but as I can personally attest, it is. I spent maybe three years afraid to hug my own father until I realized what was going on - nothing. But awful messages from the media (because if it bleeds it leads, even if bleeding isn't news to anyone but the bleeder) had me convinced for a short while that there must be something, somewhere despite absolutely no evidence of inappropriateness ever in my whole life.

We need to believe, truly, that it takes a village to raise a child and that our villiages have both men and women. Friends and neighbors showing an interest in your child should be encouraged. (It's the cutest thing in the world when my parents' neighborhood kids come over to ask if my dad can come out to play.) A stranger engaging in a game of peek-a-boo with your child should be given a smile for keeping your kid happy while you're in line at the post office and they're bored. Young men who want to teach? Have at it. Even teach the young kids. Teach them at sunday school, temple, Muslim school, or space camp. Diversity counts from an early age if you want your boys to grow up thinking they truly can do anything they set their minds to. Unless you don't want them to grow up to be civic minded coaches, big brothers, teachers, scout masters, or benevolent strangers.

Please, the next time you see a message like this, realize the cumulative damage it does. Don't read that article. Don't buy that paper. Don't watch that program. It's fear mongering and nothing more. The man in it? He will not/is not harming your kids. He's probably not harming anyone's kids. It does not make society better to spread these lies and insinuations about male teachers. We can deal with the individuals who are problems without making all men into problems.

In with the love; out with the jive.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Make a Positive more Positive

Every so often I remember to check out the blog Already Pretty. (Yes it's in my sidebar, but I don't have time to check it as often as she updates it.) It's posted by a woman named Sal who talks fashion in body positive talk and accessible concepts. I hit it up again tonight and was thunderstruck by this post of a few days ago:

Already Pretty's Reversals of language

It's about spinning (my recurrent theme) your descriptive relationship with clothes in a positive way. Such a simple thing but I don't know that I've ever thought of it this way before. Read the entry and you'll see just how powerful and positive it can be to say, instead of:

- choker necklaces look really good on me
- my neck was made to showcase choker style necklaces

instead of;

- bootleg jeans are really slimming on me
- my legs make magic with bootleg jeans

It might be a little thing, but for all the times we see body negative messaging in a day, we need a little positive to fill in the way we speak of, and then think of ourselves. And what a fun trick this is. Just make sure to use this power for good.

And if you're really feeling the power, comment with 2 spins you make on your own showcasing your own fabulousness. (I really do rock the choker and the bootlegs. Those are mine. My rack also highlights the greatness of the crossed v-neck.
top showcasing neckline
I'm snapping up all of those I can find before the neckline goes dormant for the next 20 years.) I think this should become an internet meme. Certainly it reminds me why I like to read other people's blogs.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Cap'n Tightpants in Person

The author stalking took a new turn tonight in that the "author" is Nathan Fillion, aka Captain Mal, aka Castle. "Team Castle" put out a novel and he was at an LA B&N to sign it. I'm pretty sure I brushed past some people that are pretty important and/or talented, but I already mentioned how Hollywood is wasted on me. (Some dude named Seamus was there and my friend's son asked directions from the police captain on Castle before realizing who it was, so I'm not the only one.) I at least knew enough to know I shouldn't ask a question in that crowd or worse, make a statement or try to instruct the writing team what to do.

Ok, snark aside, NF is hot and charismatic in person. Totally worth the drive for the sneak peek and Q&A. He had some other guy (presumably the main author) come answer some of the questions and the difference in personality and presentation couldn't have been more different. The other guy had this self-important tone to his voice that made me want to (a) ignore him and (b) punch him. I'm sure his mom loves him very much but I did not take to him. But then Mr. Fillion stepped back to the mic and handled both the questions and the crowd beautifully. I could have handled another half hour or so even though the questions started to devolve into annoying things. I tried to take a picture but my flash and shutter didn't cooperate. If you want to see how it went, I'm sure something will pop up on youtube tomorrow.

Speaking of which, that was just about the worst run booksigning I've ever been to. I've been to all kinds of booksignings and I know from booksignings and this was not good. The signage was insufficient, incomplete, and bad. The customer service lady was both surly and wrong. They claimed to have run out of books, but they had plenty on the focus wall behind the podium. They made people with books get in a line that snaked around all over the third floor so they had a choice of watching the Q&A or being in line and they mostly chose the line. While this meant I had a great view (except for the only tall people in LA who turned out for this event) it's not like they wired the image or sound over there for the more hard core fans. The bookstore down the street can fit about 40 people at once if everyone has showered and they dealt with a 500 person signing better than freaking downtown LA B&N did. It's also strange that they ran this against his show. I was glad I went, but I don't think I'll go back for the Kathy Griffin booksigning next month if that's what it'll be like.

My book club friend, her son, and I were happy to skip out and get dinner elsewhere in the mall and chat about stuff. Hopefully she'll be getting a new supervisor at work soon which will make her life more pleasant. Me, I have to get up early tomorrow to figure out some stuff for work. But in the meantime, I'm going to go finish watching Castle.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Noodley Goodness

I was too much of a wet noodle yesterday to post my daily list of good things, so I'll try to squeak it in this morning.
  • Yoga! I rather like doing yoga, but for a long time the *cough* gym I belong to *cough* hasn't offered enough yoga classes at reasonable hours. Apparently they've started offering more, later classes since the last time I checked the schedule. I desperately needed it last night and went to a very nice class. Like most yoga classes, one could modify it to one's own fitness level so the same or similar poses could be done with more or less strength. And thank cow for that because I was the fat kid in the class yesterday.

    It was my first yoga class since having nose surgery and the first one where I could mostly breathe through my nose without having to break for panting through my mouth. Kinda more refreshing that way. Also, my feet have been feeling better so I was able to do it without tennis shoes on for the first time in a couple years. Also good. But for something where you're just standing and breathing, it worked my muscles like nobody's business. I came home and just sat on the couch, kind of shaking. But it felt good because I've been tight like a drum and being so loose was a huge relief.

  • Rain! It started raining yesterday for the first time in 3 or 4 months. People in my little valley seemed to deal with it ok and not get into accidents on our stretch of freeway. The first rain of the season washes away all kinds of crud that's been building up, and nearly every gurgling stream of water I saw racing around the place was foamy with bubbles. I'm not sure that's good, but I'm going to call it good that it washed away. (Surfers - stay out of the ocean for about 3 days, per the SB dept of health.)

  • Noodle Soup! I got some noodle soup at the cheap chinese place for lunch yesterday and it really hit the spot.

A word about the flu shot. I got my flu shot after standing in line for about 30 minutes. Usually I walk up and am the only one or one of two. Maybe a few other people come but there's never been a line in the 4 (!!) years I've been getting flu shots here. There was this year! This was the regular shot, not the "hiney" shot.

[rant] I was kind of surprised by an interview done on NPR this morning talking about whether or not to make flu shots mandatory for health workers. They had, presumably, a nurse on talking about how she never really got sick, so didn't need one. Um, didn't nursing school cover how contagion works? You get innoculated not just to protect yourself, but to prevent being a carrier of deadly disease to your neighbors and clients and friends. True, vaccinations require a huge level of trust. You're getting something shot into your body that could have adverse reactions. You have to trust that the shot you're getting _is_ the vaccine and not something else. But the risk is that the adverse reactions from the injection are minimal weighed against having or transmitting a potentially lethal disease and we know they work better than just about anything to prevent mass deaths. And for a company to package and sell anything other than the vaccine, with the exception of benign saline, would be so cost prohibitive as to be vanishingly unlikely. It's a coverup that would leak out faster than fast in this age of twitter. (We do, however, need to have enforced regulations about cleanliness and quality.) I understand skepticism, but not foolishness from those who should know better. If you're going to go all paranoid about vaccines, choose a slant that might actually be probable. [/rant]

Monday, October 12, 2009

Off the Radar

I haven't heard anything yet this morning about Obama's Nobel. Maybe as is typical for friday news, people agitate a bit then forget it. But I was interested to note that after recording my views as, roughly, "so soon?" and "yep, ok", that also seems to be the main thread from the inputs Andrew Sullivan reviewed.

Improves the Taste

I went back to the cheap theater this weekend to see "Hangover" which was funny and entertaining, if not very smart. Yes, it starred all guys with some female cameo type roles, but oh well. Not every movie must have good female roles. One could argue that this didn't have good male or female roles... except the guy who leaped naked out of the trunk and started wailing away with a tire iron.

The theater is up in the next valley and rather close to the only local vietnamese restaurant I know of. It has been 3 years and I'm still stunned by 2 things: how little decent ethnic food is available outside The Valley, and how EVERY ethnic restaurant in CA sprinkles their food with cilantro. One of these days I'll remember before a steaming bowl of soup comes out with the devil soap in it. Fortunately, it hadn't steeped long and I was able to pull it out along with the raw onion garnish (wtf?). Unfortunately, the raw onion did its damage and made my belly blow up uncomfortably, but I didn't notice until after I ate the otherwise yummy beef soup with bean sprouts, basil, lime, and jalapeno add ins.

Saturday, I walked my new boots to the neighborhood cobbler to get heel strike plates put on to prevent my heels from rocking outward, then walked over to get my hair done. My previous stylist moved to a new salon that is not only more expensive and farther away, but uses product that I'm allergic to. The new stylist didn't get a funky enough color in my hair, but it is a decent looking normal color and the hair cut seems fine so I'll use her again. We also bonded over love of vietnamese food. She told me about her favorite place in The Valley, so I decided on more while I remembered to ask for no cilantro.

Pho 999 is your standard cheap diner set up, and was very busy. The rice vermicelli bowl with chopped spring rolls and roast pork was excellent. Plus, it was near an Asian market. I've been looking for one to get some lychees at a decent price for my Halloween side dish of demon eyeballs. (Lychees stuffed with cherries from pie filling.) I hit the jackpot at the Bangluck Market. I was cracking up over the name the whole time.

At the market, they had 5 or 6 types of palm sugar which I found irresistible, having never noticed it before. So now I have a moderate sized vat of palm sugar. I managed to find a tiny bottle of fish sauce for 89 cents, since I want some but don't want a giant amount. (That plus lime juice makes a tasty dipping sauce for fried stuff.) They had a half dozen brands of lychees, along with similar fruits at very affordable prices. They had mint for a third the price of the farmer's market. I impulse shopped like crazy and got out with 4 heavy bags for $22. I came back with enough time to grab some things at Trader Joes and Ralphs. And out of the three, I think Ralphs is the funniest name for a food store. But funnier, were some of the Bangluck labels many of which were translated so generically as to be useless. One heavily promoted item was bottled Maggi brand "Seasoning". The label says "improves the taste". Um, ok. It looks like soy sauce. I have no idea beyond that what it is. I didn't impulse buy that one.

Today was kind of short. I read too late into the night; slept too late in the day. While awake, I made soup from an actual recipe! I do not like the trader joe's low salt veggie broth - too carroty. But aside from that the bean soup was tasty. The soup was thickened by pureeing one can of white beans, which worked fine. Then I fell asleep on the couch. Nuts. Since then, I've reawakened, cleaned the kitchen fiendishly, packed away the newly dried farmer's market basil so I could lay out the Bangluck mint, and watched the Discovery show on Ardilopithecus. And this, of course. Aside from being a little worried about how much I slept and the cilantro sneak attacks, pretty much everything goes in the happy column for the weekend.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Hope and Peace

I'm trying to record my initial reactions to the news of hearing that President Obama won the Nobel Peace prize before I go searching out opinions beyond the ones I heard with the NPR broadcast this morning.

I had 2 simultaneous first reactions to hearing the news that he'd won.
  1. What has he done that warrants this?
  2. Ok, yeah, I get it.

Even more, I think Obama gets it. He mentioned that he views it as a call to continue promoting the general welfare of people not just in America but in the world at large. I see it as a statement of just how profoundly our choosing to elect him over the grandstanding of the previous administration carried off even less successfully by McCain. The rest of the world sees him as someone with his head screwed on straight who not only has a vision of a better world but has the communication skills, stratgic thinking, and patience to make significant advances. And it's also a HUGE slap in the face to the way the previous administration set about doing things. I also think it's a message from the rest of the world to the people of this country (or at least the leadership in this country) to try and work with Obama rather than against him.

It has been curious to me, as well as infuriating, to see the mental gymnastics the spokespersons of the oppositions to Obama engage in. Even this morning, the "conservative" guy on NPR basically said, "I don't like him and you can't make me". That's fine. You don't have to like him, but you do have to respect the office of president and you don't. You spewed absolute filth about people who didn't respect GWB, but you do 10 times worse to Obama and call it justified? This is your wake up call that while you might not like him, he really does speak in a way that encompases more people than it rejects and that's a good thing. Hearing this commentator make self contradictory statements: "we don't approve of Obama, but the people of this country should get the prize since 'we' voted him in." when you know damned well that this man didn't vote for him made me a little dizzy. When he tried to downplay the importance of the Nobel Peace Prize in order to justify his need to downplay Obamas influence, it was just pathetic. I have no problem with dissent. I have a problem with obstructionists.

I also wonder if it's a wake up call to Obama that just because he's meeting unprincipled, knee-jerk obstructionism at home doesn't mean he should abandon the higher aspirations he brought to the office. He seems to be slipping a bit in some of the things we elected him to do: doesn't seem to be standing up for gay civil rights the way I'd like, doesn't seem to be drawing back enough from the abuses of the previous administration. So I wonder if this is a message from the outside world saying, "keep trying, we've got your back".

One reason they awarded him the award was that he had completely changed the tone of international dialogue. I don't think the importance of that can be overstated. Probably the best seminar I ever took was one in how to get things done by being assertive rather than an aggressive bully or a passive doormat. Using the principles from the class, I complained to a neighbor about his late night party on a weeknight and not only did I get an apology and no more weeknight parties, he brought me two bottles of wine. If I hadn't said anything, he likely would have had more parties. If I'd been agressive, I don't know about the party situation, but lets just say he wouldn't have offered me snowboarding lessons. And Obama is all about the assertive language. Assertive language is inclusive but determined. And seeing just how quickly the change in tone has set the world on a different path, I do think that's a significant accomplishment, if only people will recognize what it was that changed it. Certainly he has a big personality. But it's the way he talks to people with respect without ignoring the obstacles or creating enemies that is the lesson we should learn.

Lastly, a coworker stopped by to chat. He grew up in India and mentioned that the Nobel committee has a specific set of criteria they judge to and Obama has hit the trifecta. It's a nice little summary so I'd like to share it.
Nobel Peace criteria, per Ravi
  • Looking at the world as your home
  • Speaking for oppressed people
  • Oppressed people having opportunity
Compare to the Romanian literature winner who also hits these things, but did it a while ago.

The buzz around the office is that Obama hasn't done "anything" yet and that this is a "you better do something" message. I can see that too. I really fear some backlash on this, but only because I'm so used to our backlash. On the whole though, I have hope that things will continue to change even if they don't change overnight.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Karmic Ping-Pong

It was another frogurty kind of day.

Good: The gift I sent to my friend's office arrived today
Cursed: Today was the last day of people at the office, they're shutting up the shop.
Good: It cheered her up on a rather bad day, so she called to say hi.
Cursed: Her nice business is no longer.

Good: I got up on time for work today (unlike yesterday when I slept through the alarm)
Cursed: My body didn't like it and I was a little useless. I'm still zingy enough I can't remember what I really wanted to blog about.

Good:I remember now!
Cursed:It's not *that* interesting. Well, it's two things. You can judge.

Cursed: My arms are all swollen from my allergy shots.
Good: I got to see an Ignobel award up close.

Good: Bank of America, who are usually out to scam me, actually thought my account activity was weird and put a fraud alert on it then called me to verify the charges as good or cursed.
Cursed: One of the charges (Paypal) sounded like "Plink" and repeating it didn't help.
Good: The other two of three charges were real so I assumed all was well and pressed 1 for "yep, I authorized that". Then I went online to check my account statement.
Cursed: The suspected account was behind a fraud barrier - including the list of charges I needed to verify. They asked for 1 piece of ID to verify me on the phone and roughly 18,000 online questions. Um, I don't remember if my car loan was 2005 or 2006, I bought the car at the new year and don't know if the paperwork was dated the previous or following year. Even more, I don't care. (The payments are set up to go to the last payment and stop and that's in roughly 3-5 months.) But someone with my credit report could easily know this, so why it's a security question is beyond me. So I declined to answer the questions as I just wanted to verify that I hadn't validated something odd.
Good: BOA has online chat assistance so they don't have to listen to me yell at them.
Cursed: The chat didn't offer the CC# in question as an option for "what account?" so I got sent to someone who couldn't help me.
Good: But she did give me a phone number that worked.
Cursed: There's a reason chat is better. I get unreasonably pissed off by frustrating things that take a lot longer than I think they should, and if I wait until I cool down, I don't get my issues resolved, so it's a struggle to not be pissy on the phone. I try, I really do try, to be civil and pleasant, but I was not having my very best day today and it was marginal.
Good: The other guys in the office thought I was hilarious; the lady wrote down my suggestion of being able to view (but not act on) the potentially fraudulent items in question without the cavity search.
Cursed: It looks like it was signing up for that put it over the edge. Well, that's why I LOGGED IN and created a low limit, early expire ShopSafe number to use!!! *NEXT TIME* when they try to use the expired number, then flag it.
Good: Still, in matters financial, better safe than sorry. (Mostly) They probably get a ton of complaints from those "we'll help you by auto-renewing your subscription without sending a reminder" web sites.

Good:Plus, I'd made cinnamon rolls - one set with "cooking light" dough and one with my standard "Williams Sonoma" dough. I think I'll stick with the WS, the difference is mostly 1 egg and 1/6c sugar. But the CL did offer up a decent icing recipe (2T milk, 2-4T melted butter, dash vanilla, add conf.sugar until you like texture, ~1c) that worked out well. So I took one batch of cinnamon-raisin-pecan rolls and one of ginger-cherry-apple rolls.
Cursed:They didn't disappear, but
Good:That just means more for me.
For balance: I had steamed veggies and cucumbers for dinner. And bought a birthday gift for a blogger I enjoy, just for the hell of it. He had a wish list and it seemed auspicious to be generous as my gift giving mojo has been rocking recently, and it's a little capricious.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Cutting Edge of the Mundane

In addition to seeing Whip It again on Friday and the live theater Matthew Modine Saves the Alpacas in Westwood today, I've been watching TV. This watching is via actual TV and Hulu, which is much of the reason I sprang for a netbook. I tend to "multitask" when watching TV, which is harder when the screen is tiny and on the floor across the way because I haven't yet sprung for a longer cable connection or a wireless transmitter. I cook, pretend to exercise, wash laundry, read, or mostly do logic puzzles. And on my penrose and altair slitherlinks, I've been taking notes when I hear something that takes my fancy.

Here are some of the notes I made, some I will try to explain, some I think do better without:
  • "You should miss me, I'm Fantastic!" the always awesome Jenna Elphman on "Accidentally on Purpose"
  • Comedian Jared Redd used the phrase amalgam "metrocurious" and mentioned, "they not hos, they health nuts, keeping everybody in shape!" Naturally this reminded me of Dan Savage's rebranding of "conveniently located and economically priced sex workers".
  • On Glee, that music instructor is more clueless than clueless, but everyone else is pretty fun. Puck/Buck (does it matter?) rather does it for me and has this fun line, "That Rachel chick makes me want to light myself on fire, but she can sing."
  • Annie Oakley was born "Phoebe Anne Moses" and was the best shot in the county by age 12. (12! What does that say about maturity/necessity in the wild west? We barely allow 12 year olds to chew gum these days.) She outshot a traveling sharpshooter (it wasn't clear how old she was but definitely a teen) and he married her and became her manager. After years of sharpshooting cigarette ash off the lit cigarette in his mouth, she died and he followed 3 weeks later. Which makes me think they either had the same virus or he had a broken heart.
  • Transvestite Entourage by Regina Slang - a quip about "the romance novel he's going to write with that pen name", from mom's favorite late night host Craig Ferguson.
  • 5'9" and 146# Actually, that's not very healthy unless his skeleton is miniscule.
  • Remember to download some cat stevens, some airborne toxic avenger (sometime around midnight), and that shorty got low song from FloRida.
  • 25mph over the limit means no traffic school (from puzzle at court)
  • sporting houses
  • "first summer blockbuster!!!" yeah, that's a super Wolverine endorsement [/sarcasm].
  • Hot water cornbread, make like silver dollar pancakes - look up recipe on DDD.
  • pesto mayo - mayo+pesto, mustard, salt, pepper, rice vinegar
  • Cinderfella
  • one booty kitchen
  • Whip It
  • "We'll just invest it....and it's gone. Please move aside, this line is for bank customers only" (South Park)
  • It sells love and it sells hairspray (probably from my head, but it's the Psychadelic Furs)
  • John Stewart, "time to kill, but none to reflect"
  • does Dannica Patrick sell stock in her brand?
  • colonial tropical - a decor theme thaI had in mind when I moved in but went totally out the window. Someone just used it on HGTV the other day.
  • 1m^3 water is 1 ton
  • beats/loses to chart for The Big Bang Theory's Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock (paper disproves spock)
  • "Cutting Edge of the Mundane" is from the Flaws of Averages which likely points out that the average person has one testicle and one breast.

So that's the clutter and noise from my head, how 'bout you? (BTW, matthew modine needs some neck firming lotion or better lighting. Yeesh. But the lady who played Roz, my favorite character on Frasier, was the other lead and rocked it.) Back to Courtney Cox in Cougar Town. Almost fun enough to make up for no more Dirt.

Updated with above strikeout and neighboring link, and to give a bithday shout out to my bro. Glad you liked the haiku shirt.