Friday, October 31, 2008

Daylight Savings Time

What, no Halloween meme? I feel a little gypped Back Porch peeps.
::Onesome: Daylight-- Savings Time is up here in the US this weekend. Ready? Set? Go? ...or will you just wake up and worry about it sometime Sunday?
  • I almost forgot we were going to get to change the clocks back. It gets later and later every year. Still, thankfully, it does come and I get that extra hour of sleep. Extremely lovely. And I do make sure to change all the clocks in the house - and there are a lot of them - back before we go to sleep.

::Twosome: Savings--? Hey, do you use coupons when you shop? ...and do you go looking for them online?

  • I do use coupons when I can. I have even looked for them online. The problem I find is that the companies issue coupons in the hopes that the consumer will think it's a deal and buy their product. Most of the time the store brand, card and/or an alternate is cheaper, even with the coupon. If we even use that product. I try to get the best deal however possible. If that includes coupons then I use the coupon.

::Threesome: Time-- to batten down the hatches where you are? They've had snow in Ohio and Ottawa; and we may not hit the 80's this weekend in CaliLand: is Winter approaching for you?

  • All I can say, is I am SO glad I no longer live in the Frozen North. Cold, cold, snow and cold. For nearly nine months of the year., No. Thank. You. And while it has been warm here in The Jungle for the last month, it is cooling down, a little. Winter is coming, and all too soon we will be crying about how cold it is here too.

This is me, looking forward to the sleeping.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Rain, Rain, Go A - Oh, Wait

I swear we have the shortest rainstorms here in The Jungle. I woke up this morning - partially cloudy sky - and while eating breakfast it got dark. Really dark. And the rain came. It poured for about 30 seconds. Maybe a full minute, maybe, and it stopped and the sun came out.
That is not enough rain to dent the dust on my car, let alone water all my plants. If we gathered all the rain from the whole neighborhood into one tiny place it might make a whole inch deep. So disappointing - I wanted some weather.

This is me, not even damp.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Forgot The Title

It was tough, but I watched Dancing With The Stars. Tough because I did not feel good these last few days. Thank goodness for TiVo. So about the dancing night:
  • OMG - Flatley in a suit! That was awesome. Tom even made a joke about him deigning to wear a shirt for the evening - he was the guest judge and he was a generous one.
  • What was Lacey wearing around her ankles?
  • I was glad to see Susan finally speed up her steps
  • Brooke wasn't as bad as the tow regular judges sugested she was, but she didn't have a lot of hip action, and that is what the rumba is all about - seemed like Michael Flatley liked it though
  • Kym had a weird outfit, were those curtains hanging from her skirt?
  • Cloris, oooooh my gosh - so funny but I have to agree with Carrie-Ann - we gave up Toni Braxton for this?
  • Seems that one of Michael's favorite words is "intoxicating"
  • hip hop is totally a young person's dance. It was wise to get 'Clorky' out of the way but also Susan looked very lost

The results show was less exciting than I expected. I make fun of Michael Flatley and his shows, "Lord of the Dance," "Feet of Flames," etc. but he can usually be counted on to give a splashy show. He did not deliver. Maybe I've been spoiled by other tap dancers, maybe it just wasn't that good a routine, I don't know. Also, the Pussycat Dolls? Not my speed. Eh. And it was time for Cloris to go home, so yay for that.

This is me, reporting on the week's dancing.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

She Is Sick, Sick, Sick

So, it seems that my once-a-year-lay-me-out-flat-for-two-week-sickness is upon me. Last year it hit me at Christmas so I suppose I should be thankful that I'm not missing anything this time. It started last Thursday with a raspy voice and I naively assumed it was my tonsils acting up again and I could get all the attention of sounding sick without actually being sick. (Am I wacked? Probably.) Ha ha ha. The joke is on me. Friday I had a few sniffles, Saturday my head felt like it was going to explode and Sunday I had a fever. I have also developed a wracking cough AND my voice isn't better yet. Yesterday was not a good day and today was worse. I didn't wake up until almost 11am and I didn't want to get up then. Everything made me lightheaded, doing the dishes nearly made me pass out, and I couldn't muster the strength to go out and get the paper. You know I am sick if I can't get the paper.
I think I am going to go to bed now and see if I can ignore it all by slipping quietly into unconsciousness.

This is me, sick.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Just Checking In

::Onesome: Just-- the Cell Phone? ...and no land line? How does it pencil out for you: do you need to have both a cell phone and a home phone in your life? How about down the road? Do you see yourself disconnecting from the hard-wired connection?
  • I don't think we NEED it, but I don't mind having the land line. For one thing, it gives me a number to fill in on forms and things so I don't have to answer when they call - telemarketers you know - and the land line does not run through batteries nearly as fast as the cell phone does. Also, it's easier to tuck the house phone under your chin while doing dishes or kneading the bread dough than the cell phone.

::Twosome: Checking-- accounts, a thing of the past or something that will be around for a while? I'm wondering how much we're coming around to debit cards and online payments...

  • I think we'll keep the checking accounts. There will always be some people who want to write a check and some places that won't take plastic. You give me an incredulous look, but those businesses are out there. They don't want to pay the credit card fee or they want to avoid paying taxes or whatever.

::Threesome: In-- the same vein: how about the net itself? If you're on it for basic communications then what happens when your handheld device becomes your email/chat/and voice communication system? Do you bail from the hardwired home links when wifi becomes just a little more ubiquitous? ...and before you answer, check in with any teen you see walking down the street with their head in the Net!

  • Hmm, that's tough. Our home setup isn't hard wired completely. The laptops all have wireless cards so we don't have to be plugged in anymore. But we do have the gateway in the house and we don't really text or check the Internet from our phones. We aren't THAT popular or 'with it', sad to say. I guess it will depend on how fast the technology develops and how cheap it is when it gets here and when they stop selling the stuff that we're already using.

This is me, and your communication questions answered. Well, their questions.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Halfway Through The Season

Perhaps because there were so many contestants to begin with, it still seems like there are a lot of people for this season of Dancing With The Stars to be half over. And maybe it's just that I am not as excited as I once was. Do I know why? If it's not the judges sniping at each other, making up alliterative descriptions, or the fact I can't vote Sam off the show, or the same cliches about "bringing it", then I am just not sure what it could be.
Still, there are a few comments I could make about this week:
  • Why do the judges not criticize Julianne for overshadowing her partner? Because she totally does.
  • Kym had a LOT of fringe on her outfit.
  • Derek looks very much like a girl with those hats on, and OMG did you see his hair? That must have been a whole lotta product to get it to stay like that.
  • Cody's jitterbug seemed a little frantic? I mean it's a fast dance and very exaggerated true, but really?
  • All the judges seemed REALLY grouchy at the start.
  • Sam really sucks at the interviewing. Everyone tries to have good sportsmanship, say nice things about their competitors and she just keeps trying to pit them against each other, make them say "fighting words."
  • Carrie-Ann just likes touching all the good looking men.

The results show was not as big as they hyped it to be. The Macy's 150th Anniversary number was elaborate but there wasn't as much dancing as I would have liked and the transitions were poor I felt. The Brian Setzer Orchestra was cool though and the jive by Louis and Karina!? It was like a jive on crack they were moving so fast. It looked like they were on fast forward. Wow. I knew Louis was precise and extreme On another note, are they serious? Michael Flatley is coming to judge? How low has the "Lord of the Dance" sunk to be guesting like this? I feel a little bad for Toni Braxton, getting sent home this week since she started out so well and resorted to tricks because others were. (Peer pressure Toni, not a good thing.) And I've never really felt that Susan Lucci gives it enough power so she could have gone home and I not minded but whatever. There's always next week.

This is me, getting critical in my old age.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Proposition 8

This post has been a long time in coming because it's been very hard to write. The subject is so very important to me but I didn't want to offend the - oh so many - people who read this blog. So I dithered for a long time about how to start and how to word it and what to include and what not to; you get the idea. Then I decided to just do it. It probably will offend someone (sorry) but it might also educate or encourage someone to think about their point of view.
California is voting in November for a number of things; light rail, renewable energy and prison sentences among others. Oh and the President of the United States too. Also on the ballot is a Proposition redefining marriage as between one man and one woman. Redefining because in 2000 the same Proposition was passed by 61% of the voters. Then the State Supreme Court overturned the people. Now it's on the ballot again, to permanently amend the State Constitution. To some this is an attack on the gay and lesbian lifestyles but I don't see quite how. Under the state's law,
  • "Registered domestic partners shall have the same rights, protections, and benefits, and shall be subject to the same responsibilities, obligations, and duties under law, whether they derive from statutes, administrative regulations, court rules, government policies, common law, or any other provisions or sources of law, as are granted to and imposed upon spouses. (Family Code ~297.5)

I support, as do others in favor of Proposition 8, civil unions, alimony, joint custody and power of attorney for all types of partnerships. Share the title on the house, be able to inherit money, joint bank accounts, absolutely. Just don't call it marriage. I don't think that is an outrageous tough compromise but for some it seems to be. The very wording of the Proposition implies there are rights being taken away from citizens. I don't agree. I believe the ability to marry is a privilege, not a right. Sort of like a driver's license. Not everyone can get one. Those who want to defeat Proposition 8 say there will not be any change to what is taught is schools and will not affect any other aspect of life. But I disagree. It's already being affected. Consider: There are already threats to remove tax exempt status and other benefits from churches if they do not accept same-sex marriages. Private schools run by religious groups will have to alter their curriculum or face prosecution. I'm sure there will be a flurry of law suits and prosecutions of Catholic churches, LDS temples and Jewish synagogues for discrimination. The Catholic church has had to suspend adoption proceedings in another state that passed a similar law. Ministers and priests in Canada have been sued for hate speech for preaching against same-sex marriage. That's a lot of changes. What would not happen to make this situation different? Nothing that I can tell.

This is me, welcoming your comments. Make them constructive please.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I Heart Potatoes

Random spud:

This is me, and a potato.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Dodge, Parry and Block

::Onesome: Dodge--? in "Get outa'? Okay, so tomorrow is Friday: where would you go to "get out of Dodge" for a day (if you could, that is)?
  • No limits? Like money? Other Side Of The World to see my sister, or Deep South to see Rocketgirl, or The Rockies to see QC. With restrictions? Maybe the beach, or somewhere quiet and green and not blisteringly hot in October.

::Twosome: Parry--? What's your best comeback? ...and yeah, "Oh, yeah?" doesn't count!

  • I guess "Ite-Bay Ee-May" doesn't count either then? (That would be "Bite Me" in pig-latin. Umm, is it pathetic that I just say "Shut up?" I'm so not good with the comebacks. In fact, I try not to get in a situation where I need them just because I am so bad at them. Not a fast thinker on her feet, Jane is.

::Threesome: Block-- Parties: do you have them? Apartment get togethers count too. Oh, heck, even dorm keggers, -eh?

  • Heh, no. The Jungle does not have block parties. Closest we come is fourth of July when all the illegal fireworks are going off from neighboring houses and we all go out in the street to watch or warn them if the police come. And speaking of the police; the station down the block ropes off the street for a weekend to scare the kids of the neighborhood to death near Halloween. Does that count?

This is me, with a less than stellar meme.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Ode To A Sister-In-Law

I am sure you all know Rocketgirl is my sister-in-law. (Sometimes it's astounding to think she and Tarzan come from the same gene pool and other times it's obvious they couldn't be from different ones.) If you read her blog then you know she has a crazy-cute kid and a super husband. She plays the violin, writes music, is in two bands - each has released a CD - and looks like a rock star. You might also know she's a perfectionist and sometimes stresses over the craziest things.
What you might not know is that she is a truly genuine person. She has no false modesty, but also no delusions of grandeur. She is as honest and as true as any person could be. I don't think she could lie if her life depended on it. To paraphrase a fabulous show; there is no pretense here, she really is that good and giving of herself.

  • She really is that in love with her husband.
  • And her kid.
  • She really does like the color red.
  • She really does care that much for other people.
  • She really is that good at the violin.
  • She really does believe wholeheartedly in a divine plan.
  • She really does trust in her Heavenly Father to look after her.
  • When she is happy for you, she can't not tell others how wonderful you are.
  • If she cries with you or for you, she really does feel your pain.
  • When she laughs, it is with complete abandon and true joy.
  • She really is.

This is me, wishing my sister-in-law a wonderful and


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Plus Two

It's that time of year again. I've never been one to dwell on age and what the number means, but 32 seems big. Maybe because I remember when my mother turned 32. I was 6 and had two, no three, siblings. I feel as if I'm lacking somehow. Not just the kid thing, though goodness knows I want that, but I'm not the housekeeper my mother is, the seamstress my mother is, the kitchen talent my mother is AND I don't have nine kids. Blah, blah, poor me. Perhaps I spent too much time alone today because I talked myself into a good funk. Fortunately Tarzan talked me out of it in time to go out for dinner. He's good like that; good at making me laugh and not taking myself too seriously. I got some seriously good wishes on Facebook, in comments and Rocketgirl and Sunshine made me a video! How could anyone be in a mood when those faces say they love you?
That's what I thought.
Some birthday cards have come. Thanks mother-in-law!:
From RHM, ever faithful:Tarzan took me out for sushi at one of our favorite hole-in-the-wall places that isn't quite as obscure as it once was. Still really good though. Didn't get a picture of the sushi but here's the "cake," red bean ice cream deep fried in tempura batter:Let's not forget presents!:I love my crazy, wonderful, practical husband. Yes, that IS a blender. The blade in our old one rusted stuck and I whined all summer about not being able to make smoothies. Now I can. And since it's still 93 degrees outside, it seems quite likely:He also got me chocolate, AND this cake. An ice cream cake, which I mentioned in May or something and he remembered! So good. I can't believe he got them to write all that on the cake, and that they managed to make it all fit:Leetle too much flash, but there have been worse self portraits:This is me, 32.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I Should Invite Them To My Birthday

In keeping with my new "less is more" policy, this was my take on last night's dancing:
  • Maurice had a good dance, better than the judges thought, but the hair was weird.
  • Julianne's outfit was UG-LAY.
  • "Clorky" is just too funny.
  • Was Lance's HAIR purple too?
  • What was with the narrative song that Brooke danced to?
  • Warren's outfit should have matched Kym's a little more.
  • Carrie-Ann was all crabby and mean - I think she was blinded by the reflective dress she was wearing.
  • Kind of excited for the "new" dances that are coming: hustle - related to swing which isn't danced on this show but whatever, jitterbug - related to the jive, salsa - related to the mambo, west coast swing - related to AWESOME. Especially as we get to see Alec dance it.

If that commentary is a bit short it's only because tonight's show was the BEST RESULTS SHOW EVER! I don't even know where to begin. For example; the campaign messages. SO hysterical. Loved the editing on each one. And then the kids' competition was back - so cute! And so good! Kind of depressing and awe inspiring too. And then - probably the best part of the night - the Chippendales do Riverdance! Well, not really. They're Los Vivancos and they are hot. Supposedly they're related too but I don't know about that. I don't usually get worked up over guys strutting their waxed chests like that, but these boys were good. Apparently it's a signature move of theirs to just take their shirts, vests, coats, whatever off during the dance. I say that's okay by me! This was their performance last night.

This is me, with the eye candy.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Seven Stupid Things

I pondered what magnificent things to regale you with today - the thumb does feel much better now thank you so much - and then I remembered I was tagged for a meme last week! Thanks Rocketgirl!
So with no further ado, seven stupid things about me:
  1. I am not any good at playing strategy games. Chess, checkers, Chinese checkers, Risk, whatever. No good. I don't know if it's because I don't look far enough ahead or if I just don't have any vision. Give me a good game of chance, on the other hand, and my odds go up considerably.
  2. My right foot is almost (3/4-ish) a full size larger than my left. Makes it tough to buy shoes.
  3. I do not like to sleep flat. I need soft and cushy support when I sleep. The six pillows on our bed are evenly divided during the day, but come the night Tarzan takes one, maybe two, and the remaining find their way to my side.
  4. I hate mayonnaise.
  5. I read the newspaper comics while eating breakfast every day. The whole day seems off if I can't.
  6. The Jeopardy theme is perpetually stuck in my head.
  7. My back is nearly always itchy. Best present I can get is for someone to scratch my back.

This is me, whew. That was harder than I thought it would be.

Friday, October 10, 2008

It Didn't Tickle

Apparently, The Back Porch peeps are on vacation again - what is with that? - BUT I do have the lovely story of my visit to the doctor today with which to regal you.
*Warning: the following story mentions injections.*
You would think after watching ER for 150 years it might have occurred to me not all doctors are created equal. And that they don't do procedures exactly the same way. This did not occur to me, however, until after I almost passed out in the plastic surgeon's office this afternoon.
I kid you not.
The doctor who had seen me previously for my left trigger-finger-that-is-actually-a-thumb is out on medical leave until November - doctors get medical leave? that's so weird - so I could wait until then, or see a different guy. I chose not to wait especially because I got scolded the last time for waiting too long. Plus it is really annoying to have to put down my drink to hold the TV remote in my left hand to change the channel every time.
Their introductory approach was much the same: hello, what seems to be the trouble, when did it start, what do you do for a living, how old are you and does this hurt? (Yes, doctor, it sure does.)
Then the differences began to be apparent.
Previous doctor: Kind of old-er, grey hair, stern sort of man. He's the one who lectured me about waiting so long to come in.
Today's doctor: Young-ish, bald on purpose, friendly-let's-get-you-all-fixed-up-right-now mannerisms.

PD: Let's do a Cortisone shot, today, and you can come back in six weeks and we'll check how it's doing. You might need a second one since you waited so long to come in.
TD: My recommendation is for a Cortisone shot, which we can do today. Does that sound okay?

PD: Wash hands with soap and iodine and then dry and then spread some iodine all over your hand, please.
TD: Dug out an alcohol swab and washed my thumb. (This is when I should have clued in.)

PD: Spritz spritz with the local anesthetic, nice big needle, this may sting a bit, hold still and there you are.
TD: Let me get a thinner needle (thinner, but WAY longer) this will hurt some, hold still, open your eyes, little bit more still to do, (Me, putting my head down on my other arm as the room spins) Are you okay? Deep breaths, nice, slow, deep breaths...

PD: Band-aid. Don't do anything with it today, the numbness will wear off in a few hours, no dirty work, like gardening or litter boxes for a week. See you in six weeks.
TD: Are you okay? Deep breaths, do you want to lie down? How do you feel? (Me, apologizing profusely despite the ringing in my ears and not being able to see.) Don't apologize, it's normal, happens all the time. Hang on for a few minutes and don't get up. (Later, like 10 minutes later.) Can you stand? How do you feel? You're sure? Okay. Don't worry, it happens all the time. Come back in six weeks and we'll check it out. You're sure you're okay?

Was the weirdest thing ever. NEVER has that happened to me, and I have had a lot of injections in my life. A LOT. It hurt, like I don't remember the other one hurting. My thumb felt like it was going to explode, and the anesthetic has worn off now and it hurts worse than before the doctor saw it. I hope this is temporary, and normal - he said it would hurt a lot when the numbness wore off - and will be better tomorrow.

This is me, I really don't want to do this any more.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

There Is A Distinct Difference

This has got to be one of the best and also annoying weeks in the competition. Best because the jive is awesome - LOVE the skirts AND the music - and I want to love the waltz too, it's so romantic and gentle but this is annoying because it's my same old complaint:
The Viennese Waltz is in closed position all the time. It's fast and therefore there is not enough time for promenades and turns. It isn't a competition dance. Ever. What they perform on the show is an American Smooth Waltz. (Do not even get me started on the mix of International and American Style dances they are doing.)
But some of the competitors did their American Smooth Waltz very nicely.
I really wanted to like Rocco's waltz - especially with the blindfold training - and it was cute, but he missed some footwork and not as much content as others. Not as elegant as I want him to be.
Warren is the unexpected competitor in this race. He's really light on his feet and his musicality is remarkable.
What the heck was that music for Toni and Alec? It started out with real Viennese waltz music and then got weird. And she didn't do the standing on her head thing.
Brooke is, and was, just lovely. And it was a decent waltz song. That's a rarity.
In the jive department:
Maurice's jive was so cute.
Cody was the more reserved one in their jive; Julianne was the one who was wild and uncontrolled - and what was with the air guitar?
OMG - what was Cloris was doing? It started out okay, cute even, but it kind of fell apart in the middle and the end was just...I don't even know.
That's a sad thing for Misty - and the Achilles tendon is a big thing to have pop. One of the guys I worked with ruptured his and he chose not to have surgery and wore a cast for six weeks and then had a cane for six more.

This is me, with week 3 of season 7.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

This Is Getting To Be A Habit

You're going to think I'm making this up, but I promise I am not.
My OTHER (that would be the right hand) thumb is now exhibiting signs of being a "trigger" finger-that-is-actually-a-thumb too. What's the deal? It's not like I do anything unusual with my thumbs than any other person out there. It's a bit of mouse moving, book holding, bottle opening, remote button pushing, phone dialing and scissors using. Not that big an exertion. But here we are again. I wonder if I just have defective fingers. Good thing I wasn't a piano player for a living.

This is me, did I mention that my doctor said I was the second youngest person with trigger finger that he's ever had to treat?

Friday, October 03, 2008

Your Milage May Vary

::Onesome: Your-- ability to see beyond the horizon is limited only by your imagination. Discuss!
  • I should just say, yes! That's true. We are our only limit. But that's not entirely true. It doesn't matter how hard we believe or try it's unlikely we are going to be able to fly. So, I temper with: within reason, yes. If we believe and try hard enough and are willing to work for it, then yes, nearly everything is possible.
::Twosome: mileage may-- be lower for some drivers due to variables like under-inflated tires or speeding up to get to the next red light. Hmmm... Any tips out there for those trying to stretch their fuel dollars?
  • Don't speed up to get to the next red light. Also, make sure your tires are inflated properly and all the intake valves or whatever are clean. Change the oil, the coolant/anti-freeze. Don't keep heavy things in your trunk. Also, keep an eye out for the cheapest gas so you know where to go when you need to fill up. Walk whenever you can. Take public transportation. Ride your bike.
::Threesome: Vary-- this, vary that, and pretty soon you've broken up a routine. Here's one: what routine of yours really needs to have a little variation introduced? (I'll exclude changing the flavor of your Friday evening ice cream snack; while a little change may be good, radical events should be planned out!)
  • I don't know if I have any routines. Is that good or bad? I try and get the dishes in the dishwasher right after dinner...does that need a stirring up? Wednesdays I take the snack for Tarzan's book club to his school because he always forgets it. Maybe my shower routine could be altered. Shave my legs first, THEN shampoo my hair? I am a radical.

This is me, with the meme from The Back Porch peeps.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

In Short

There are still SO many dancers on the show it's overwhelming just to watch, let alone comment on EVERY SINGLE ONE. Plus there are others doing that very thing. So I made an executive decision - it was a short meeting, small committee - and these are the highlights from both dance night and results night according to Jane.
  • A moot point after last night's elimination, but Mark Ballas needs to rein it in a little bit. He was over dancing so much it made Kim look like she wasn't doing anything at all.
  • "Xena, the Warrior Princess?" Bruno I am so disappointed in you. You have made up such better metaphors than that.
  • But on a related note, it seems that someone, a couple someones in fact, is taking a page out of Mel B's wardrobe book and working the black pleather outfit for the paso doble.
  • Another related note, why did Kim and Warren get mood lighting for their dance? Everyone else dances on a fully lit floor. Why are these two so special? Though I loved the Matrix-esque theme.
  • And speaking of wardrobe, Julianne almost tripped on her, apron?, at least five times during their rumba. One would think they'd consider these things when designing costumes.
  • And maybe it's because I have seen all the seasons and watched a lot of interviews but does it seem like they all talk in cliches? It's all, "step up our game," "kick it up a notch," "bring our "A" game," "bring it" and "we're just having fun." Think of another phrase peeps.

This is me, summing it up shorter.

From Whence You Cometh