Saturday, January 31, 2009

That's A Wrap

And with that, ladies and gentlemen, we bid adieu to the month of January.
It's been a nice month here in The Jungle, warm mostly, sunny, the green garbage can for our yard trimmings was delivered - finally - Fleighund's wedding, dinner with family, cleaned some stuff up in the house, planned the garden.
Really the only low point was the disappearance of Speck. Poor kitty. I suppose he could be stuck in an attic somewhere - Train Wreck did that a few summers ago - but I can't hear anything that sounds like a meow outside.
And now that you are all sufficiently yawning, it's time for sleep.

This is me, with the first month of 2009 summary. We lead exciting lives over here.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Have You Seen Me?

I think Speck is gone.
We haven't seen him in almost a week. I wouldn't usually be too worried about it - sometimes the cats spend days exploring the alley behind the house and making other kitty friends - except the little fluffball from next door was hit by a car recently; she and Speck were friends. It sounds weird but I hope he's been cat-napped or adopted by someone else because if he hasn't then he lost a fight with a car and that would make me too sad to think about.
If he somehow has kitty amnesia and is wandering in your neighborhood by mistake he has long thick fur, a brown-ish nose, large ears and his tail is nearly the same size as his body. I really regret not having a more recent picture. This is from last September, it doesn't show his tail and I'm pretty sure he's bigger now:

This is me, missing a kitty.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Hair's The Problem

A-ha-ha-ha, I kill myself. But remember that part about me not being able to tell a joke? Here we are.
But in a different vein, I have a problem for which I need much help from the talented peeps in the Internet. What am I going to do about my hair? I tried to get it all fancy for the wedding two weeks ago and we all know how that turned out. So I've been playing with the hot rollers and the hairspray to see what comes out and this is the first thing that I can actually show you that looks like anything:
There are a lot of little wisps that I have to learn to tame - obvi - but what do you think of the concept? Here's the right side:
It came out a little better don't you think? The problem I have is how to deal with the front. I have a weird hairline with a widow's peak - which makes it hard to have bangs, sad because I feel that would help me a great deal - and a cow lick so if I brush my hair the wrong way it looks like a huge bald spot on one side of my head. Awesome:
I think I look kind of like Princess Leia in that one. It makes it hard to find a facial concept that looks decent. This next one is a great close up of my ear, and it suggests the subtle shades of color in my hair - also where the highlights are growing out:
And is the problem really, as I have always suspected, just my face? Do I need a new face Internet?:

This is me, with hair issues.
P.S. Tarzan's opinion is that I need more uniform curls and a method to the madness, ie. a way to make the curls look like they are artlessly thrown together without them actually being artlessly thrown together. Problem is I can't see behind my own head so how do I handle that?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Superstars Is A Matter Of Opinion

Has anyone else been watching Superstars of Dance? As much as I love all kinds of dance, I am almost ashamed to say I did. It was a well conceived idea for a show, but horribly, horribly executed. There are no guidelines as to what we are watching and though it bugs the crap out of me to have it repeated a zillion times in one episode, at least on DWTS there is NO doubt as to how the scoring works.
I realize that since he produced, directed and conceived of the show it was likely Michael Flatley would star in it too, but who wrote the copy? He's a good dancer with a sexy accent but "the most popular entertainer on the planet?" Oookay... (I had to raise my eyebrows at the segment from his new show Celtic Tiger with the chick in the bikini? How is that in any way Irish, dance or tasteful?) I also think he thought that Ireland would walk away with the prize - since all their numbers were choreographed by him truly - and maybe got a little bummed at the end when they didn't even place? The soloist from Ireland totally should have gone ahead of the weird popping guy from the USA. How is that dance? SO, SO thankful the best he did was a bronze star. I would have been mightily upset if the Russian ballerina hadn't won. She was excellent. India definitely got snubbed. South Africa was a little too tribal except for the duo so I'm glad they placed well. China was awesome and except for the final duet, Australia was weird.
And speaking of how they scored stuff, my completely biased and subjective opinion of the judges:
Argentina: Such a cute lady, she makes a motion in the air with her finger right before she enters her score.
India: Has to say his score in Indian before he says it in English. First week he gave a nine and the word in his native language is "no" so we were a little confused as to what he meant.
Australia: Needs more dance content. That's her answer to everything.
South Africa: This man is judgemental like I have never seen. Everyone else can give a nine and he'll pick seven. Not with any justification. He's also the only one to give a three. A 3!? Dude, everyone else is playing nice - don't be a snob. I think he thinks South Africa should win and since he can't score for them, is giving everyone else low scores to make up for it.
USA: He thinks he's hot stuff since he's related to the Selznick family. Like he's come down from on high to sit on the panel and we should all cry from gratitude.
Ireland: I wonder if he's intimidated by Michael Flately - or maybe just annoyed by - the man grew up in Chicago after all - Michael that is. The judge doesn't say much, but he also gives what appears to be an independent score unrelated to what other judges have submitted.
Russia: He's funny, making jokes about the KGB and Communism. My second favorite judge.
China: Totally my favorite judge, I don't even know if he understands English. He sits there, watches the number and gives a score, all without moving a facial muscle. No explanation for the score. Just bam, eight. That's all.
And my biggest pet peeve is that the scores aren't locked in BEFORE they speak, so I think some judges are giving numbers based on what someone else has said. The only genuine score is the first one.
So, maybe if they revise the structure for the show a little bit - it had a lot of great pieces but no real cohesiveness.

This is me, only able to justify one post for the entire show.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Just What I Needed

Say what you will about the attitude of cats, the mess of owning cats, the destructive nature of cats, the angst of caring for cats, say it all. Everything becomes worth it when you crawl into a chilly bed at night and find a pocket of toasty warmth just the right size for your feet.

This is me, loving the heating ability of my pets.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

No Habla Except When There's A Problem?

It's so hard to find post topics on a Sunday. Why is that do you think?
Here's a puzzle for you - I am the leader of the Primary at church - this is children ages 18 months through 12 years. We have age specific classes and activities obviously, and therefore different teachers. My teachers all speak Spanish as well as English - it's the neighborhood we live in, no biggie - and I speak no Spanish other than "Gracias," and "(H)ola." Sad, perhaps, but languages are not my gift. At social events, or with questions about their responsibilities, my teachers talk to each other, alternating between the two languages with no recognition that they are. I'm not always included and when I am, I can't always follow the language switch, though I am good at infering, smiling big and saying "oh really?"
On the other hand, when it comes to issues with their husbands or kids, they seek me out. What is THAT about? Of the eight of us I am the ONLY ONE who does not have kids. How in any way am I qualified to tell them why little Tommy is acting out at home? And I certainly don't know what to say when it's about husbands who don't want to get jobs or come to church anymore. I can sometimes make crap up - like I do for everything else - but why is that not what they talk about to each other and include me in some of the fun stuff? The stuff not relating to personages I don't have.

This is me, not sure what to do with that.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

It's Meme Time

It's been forever since there was a meme to fill out - what with The Back Porch people having been abducted by aliens. (Even the website is gone. What is going on over there?) So I know you've been anxiously awaiting the next list of useless information about me.
This time it's 25 random things, facts, habits or facts about myself.

  1. I don't know if there are 25 things about me. I'm really not that deep.
  2. I am warmer than Tarzan most of the time, but I do not like the cold or snow.
  3. I have moved a lot, but never lived outside of North America.
  4. I love animals - we have seven cats.
  5. I like parenthetical statements apparently.
  6. My sweet tooth is large but specific.
  7. I can cook.
  8. I really dislike hypocrisy. A lot.
  9. I can not tell a joke well.
  10. My wish is for red hair and green eyes.
  11. I am left handed. So is Tarzan.
  12. I read a lot.
  13. I hate to clean...but I do...sometimes
  14. I might be addicted to my television.
  15. Football is my favorite sport - Fight On Trojans!
  16. I never want to be the star - always the back-up singer, wing man or sidekick.
  17. Not a neat freak, but I need things to be lined up. Square with the desk or table top.
  18. I can not play an instrument, sing or read music.
  19. I really want kids.
  20. I love my laptop.
  21. I hate my operating system.
  22. There are nine kids in my family.
  23. I love long nails but mine break very easily, and often.
  24. I try to be a happy person.
  25. Tarzan is my reason for living.

This is me, getting the meme on.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Silly I know, but with all the TV shows on hiatus for the holidays I've felt a little out of touch. Now that Burn Notice and Battlestar Galactica are back with new episodes (in the case of BG it's been almost a year) I feel grounded again. Or at least like I know what day of the week it is.

This is me, way too addicted to my television. Good thing Tarzan likes to watch with me.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Totally Rockin' It

Don't ask where this:
came from, because, though I could tell you QC was going through some old photo CDs from his wedding reception, and posted a bunch on Facebook, and obviously I am helping decorate a table, that's where the recognition ends. I assume it's me because QC says it is and I think I'm familiar with the glasses. I never look this hot in a candid photograph. Never, ever, EVER. I may blow this image up and make it the wallpaper in our living room.

This is me, smokin'.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Good Genes

This is quite possibley the cutest kid ever:
Or this's so tough to choose:

This is me, devoted aunt.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Randomly Selected From The File

I realized I hadn't posted any images from Christmas just past, at my parent's house. This was Sunday, the day before M2, PIT, Squishy and Rosy left for The Other Side of The World. Nana wanted a family picture, and there were many much more serious ones than this:

We are in order, left to right; R3, M2, D2, BHB, ATL, me and Tarzan. We figured SLB was the best choice for holding since he was long enough to go across the width of us and the youngest. Also he was able to keep stiff and not bend in the middle. SO and M145 were not there as they had left the previous day and E, S, LittleJ and BabyR did not come down this year. Somehow the switching of years with family got messed up for them. Next year maybe.

This is me, remembering Christmas.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Not A Risk Taker

The wedding went off without a hitch, all beautiful and pretty and happy and it was gorgeous. The bride was a vision and the groom looked spiffy:The cake:
Waving goodbye:
And I know you're dying to find out what I wore - I went with the "Jackie O" suit:
It was reliable and I didn't melt though most of the other guests were in spaghetti straps and florals. No worries - at least no one laughed. I'd checked out some stores on Friday but nothing seemed right and they all needed a belt, or a camisole or shoes or whatever. Couldn't find one that jumped off the rack and said "buy me, buy me." So I didn't.
I did try to be daring with the hair, curling and spraying and pinning...nothing. By the time we got to the venue, my hair was flat. All was not lost however as all the boys from college were there to distract me. RHM was not able to make it down from The Temperate Zone which was all that prevented the day from being perfect for me. QwanSmi's presence was the biggest surprise as he doesn't visit The Jungle very often. Smurfy was the photographer, Cogent was the best man and Fleighund was the man of the hour. And Tarzan was there, of course, to dance with me and wait on me and hang around all patient like while the boys and I reminisced. He's so sweet and good to me.

This is me hoping one of the bride's best friends will forgive me for borrowing all her pictures. Ther will be more when Smurfy gets home and downloads the 5,000,000 images he took. There might even be a good one of me - though I won't hold my breath.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ring, Ring

Editor's Note: I wrote this post and it seemed awkward so I spent a few days trying to rework it and it just wasn't coming out how I wanted it to but this is the essence.
  • Rocketgirl called me today just to chat.
  • We hadn't talked in a while and I realized I missed her.
  • There was a time when neither of us would have considered the other as a confidant but we found some common ground and worked from there.
  • I could indeed call her FAR more than I do.
  • I will make that a goal and try to give as good as I get.
This is me, all esoteric today.
I know, profound stuff right? Sometimes I exasperate myself.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What To Wear, What To Wear...

Dear fashion gurus of the Internet:
I need to know what to wear this weekend to Fleighund's wedding. I haven't been to a lot of secular ones, so I don't know the protocol. How formal is this likely to be? It's an afternoon, outdoor event, near the water, with a luncheon to follow. It's been very warm lately, in the 80s during the day, so I don't know if my "Jackie O" outfit will work. It's probably exactly appropriate but it's also fully lined and makes me very warm. I wore it outside, to another wedding, in January, in The Rockies and didn't feel the need for additional protection from the snow.
Do I wear it anyway? Most of my dresses are black or black based - of course, so is the suit - am I going to look out of place because everyone else will be wearing pastels or florals? I have skirts and blouses, but I don't think they're really wedding worthy. Plus, I need shoes to match and most of my formal shoes are, you guessed it, black.
I can go shopping but I need a direction to start looking in especially as I'd have to do it alone and not have Tarzan's opinion. Lend me your wisdom!

This is me, asking your advice.

Monday, January 12, 2009


We have completed our jury service for the court - the judge read the nicest little speech to us - and we have been dismissed. We are now allowed to discuss it with our friends and family though we can't get paid for any information we supply for ninety days. So don't send me any money for this particular entry. (All the others are okay though.) So here's the tell-all at it's juiciest.
That was the most inefficient court I have ever been called to. At least here in The Jungle, courts keep pretty good hours as it is; in at 10:00, break for lunch at 12:00, back at 1:30 and done by 4:00. (Yes, I realize that the judges and attorneys do other things when court isn't in session, researching cases and precedents and whatever.) But this place, except for the first day when all the jury had to report at 8:00 for the instruction and waiting period (where we wait and wait and break for lunch and then wait some more) we started at 1:30 and were done by 4:00. That seemed a mighty waste of time. (Again, I realize that the legal peoples were doing other things.) But to have the thirty-five of us come back for THREE days just to select the jury seems a bit much.
During the jury selection - and then into the trial - I noticed a few things that make me think this particular court is like a "training" court. Firstly, it was a misdemeanor that we were observing. That's not damning evidence in and of itself but it adds to the case. Secondly, the judge was very young, as were the attorneys, and they shared a large number of glances and smiles and conferences in the hall - sidebars, but I have never seen them done that way before. Also, the judge read nearly everything for us out of a book. Unless it is a new policy I felt she just wasn't familiar enough with the wordage yet to have it memorized. I gather she was really busy too - multitasking - because she was always writing and many times when a lawyer objected she would have the last question read back so she could get caught up with the proceedings. Again, not convincing on it's own but...And the prosecuting attorney was nervous; his hands were shaking whenever he stood up to speak.
Then, and this is the juiciest part, there seemed to be something going on between the two attorneys. They talked about each other in their statements, complementing and making cute remarks. I assume this could have been a tactic by both sides to get us to like them and see they were "real" people too, but in addition they frequently chatted across the desk from each other, asking questions - when the district attorney was talking to the jury the defense attorney objected and said "I don't think you can't ask them that," like she didn't know for sure. They would trade smiles, comments and little jokes, and then, during closing arguments, the defense attorney called the D.A. by his first name. That was a little odd. We talked about it later, all of us having to take a second and realize who she was referring to. Interesting indeed.
Oh, the testimony and evidence took a day and a half and we deliberated for about two hours I think. Fairly clear once they gave us the law. Guilty. We don't get to stay for sentencing but for a misdemeanor it's only a fine or some community service right? The defendant did not look too surprised nor upset when she heard the verdict.

This is me, reading a lot into the body language of the court.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Change Is Sometimes Not Good

I don't know what happened to Child'sPlay and his kids, but from the sounds of this post it can't be good. I'm slipping a prayer or two in for them today. Hoping and wishing that it isn't the worst.

This is me, a little worried.

Friday, January 09, 2009

New Word

I learned a new word in court today. The defendant was testifying, telling her account of the events of the day, relating her part in the fracas and she said, "...after I screampt..."
Isn't that awesome? I believe she meant "screamed" but was trying to sound more educated, or like she knew more than the district attorney.
Screampt. I am going to use that in conversation tomorrow.

This is me, expanding my vocabulary.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Serving The Nation

Some people are annoyed by jury duty but I find it mostly amusing. Likely because of my first experience, but I hope that I would still be entertained by the crazies that one sees at the courthouse even if I hadn't met (slightly) famous people and had one buy me lunch.
About the crazies. Not certifiably crazy, just making like crazy in the hope they will be excused from jury duty. HIGHLY amusing. The judge knows what they're trying to do and the attorneys know what they're trying to do so certain questions get asked two or three different ways, trying to get them to admit they aren't insane. And most of them fall for it. The ones to watch out for are the ones who have no issues blatantly lying about what they do, who they know and if they've ever been arrested. ("Yes, I have been arrested several times for civil disobedience and dozens of my friends are lawyers.")
There are some decent people though, and by decent I mean honest. They could be wackos at home but in public at least, they come to take their turn, answer the questions forthrightly and have about ten minutes spent on them. Then they have to spend the rest of the three days waiting for the crazies to get tripped up or kicked out.
It is an imperfect system.
I met a guy yesterday who owns his own business, Interior Plantscapes, which is just what it sounds like. If you've ever been in a mall, or an office, or any indoor facility and seen a tree, shrub, bush, etc. and wondered if it was real and how did they get it in there and how do they keep it alive - he's a guy who figures it out.
Pretty cool actually. I've always liked plants. Maybe I should rethink my career path...

This is me, on jury duty.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


Does anyone else have scary dreams when their husband - or wife I guess, though I don't know how many guys read this thing and if they did, how many would admit to it and/or comment - does not sleep in the same bed?
I do.
Most of my dreams are weird - okay all of them are - but I am always sure of what I am doing or certain that I will not be affected by whatever is going on - no matter how bizarre. But when Tarzan stays up much later than I - like 5 hours later - I have scary, strange dreams. Every time I sleep alone this happens.
And I can't even remember what last night's was about so to share with all of you - who are simply dying to know I am sure - but the pattern is the same; I wake up in a panic, sure that something horrible has happened, is happening or will happen and have to go find Tarzan and have him make it all go away.

This is me, sure my subconscious will be the end of me.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Please Sir, May I Have Some More?

My cats are weird. And I know everyone says that about their pets and maybe all pets are weird and by being weird to us, they're all normal. If so, my pets sure are normal then!
I was eating some peach slices last night and Ice was watching me. (He is the white cat that likes fruit remember.) It's been a while since he'd had any fruit so I gave him the tiny end of one piece. And he looked at me and then at the peach. And then at me again and then at the peach and then at me. The expression on his face was not the usual disbelief of pets - the ones whose head might explode because they ARE. SO. HAPPY. AND. CAN'T. BELIEVE. YOU. ARE. GIVING. THEM. THIS. TREAT! - it was more like a little orphan child out of Dickens being given a bowl of hot soup. They're sort of afraid the whole thing is a joke and don't want to get their hopes up that it might really be for them. He looked so timid and tremulous. Even when he stuck out his tongue to lick it, it was like he was waiting for me to take it back. (Which is a little silly because none of the other cats have any interest in fruit and I am sure not going to want it back after the cat's licked it. But I don't expect him to make that logical assessment.)

This is me, feeding peaches to a cat.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

This Is How We Do It

It's nice in these times of economic uncertainty, war, regime changes and rioting in the streets that there are some things that can be depended upon.
Like USC winning the Rose Bowl.
It was a lot less close than the score suggests. It was 31-7 until the 4th quarter when some players got switched around and the defense was on the field a lot and maybe got tired. I don't know. But Penn State got beat. It was nice.
Not because I dislike Penn State. I don't. Not the way I dislike that one school down in the Everglades, or that one up in The Temperate Zone. No. I respect Penn State. They played a fair game. Their coach - all 90+ years of him - was about playing the game and not indulging the media frenzy about whether he would sit on the sidelines or in the press box.
But as is usual, the newspapers, prior to the game, were writing how USC just didn't seem to be prepping for the game mentally. (I have to admit, they should not be sleeping through the Rose Bowl information meeting. That's just rude.) The implication was that since USC has been to the Rose Bowl so many times - three in a row - they are feeling comfortable, like it's a home game, overconfident one writer said, and that may be their downfall.
Well it wasn't, and I was glad to see it.

This is me, Fighting On!

From Whence You Cometh