Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Today, I only need one thing

There comes a time about every four weeks or so when my body needs one thing - and only one thing - to live. All brain functions will shut down if I don't have Massive. Supplies. Immediately!

It is chocolate. Lusciously decadent milk chocolate.
If the stars are aligned correctly, it will be wrapped around some nice creamy caramel.
If a deity somewhere is smiling down on me, it will be a Twix.

I'll eat - and love eating - most chocolate, as long as there are no almonds in it anywhere. But right now, the only thing keeping me from attempting to perform a hysterectomy on myself is my bag of milk chocolate.

Today, I don't care about the jean size that I'm trying to whittle down to a number closer to my shoe size than it is to my age (all three of these numbers are higher than I would like, but I'm going to work on them one at a time. I started with my jeans. In a few years, I'll get to my age).

Today, I don't care that the $14 I spent on candy was not supposed to be for me to eat. These students running around the library get enough candy from every other librarian that feels the need to nurture and spoil them rotten. They can eat the Jolly Ranchers at the bottom of my candy dish, because the chocolate has been removed and put in a safe place. Which happens to be the desk drawer immediately beside my right hand.

Today, I thank the ancient religions for deciding that this is a good day to have a pagan holiday, which in turn made The Church decide that it's really the Eve to All Saint's Day, which in turn gave us Halloween. (how's that for twisting a few thousand years of history to make a point?)

But most of all, Today I thank Wallgreens for the sale they had on Mini-Twix bars last weekend.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

For Good or Evil...it's Fall again

Pro: I get to watch the sun rise on my way to work – and there are few things as beautiful as a gorgeous sunrise. Con: I am up before the sun rises. I’m sure that in an extremely civilized society, this would be illegal. Pro: The humidity has dropped below 98%, and it is no longer uncomfortable to wear something with any kind of sleeves. Con: The temperature has daily 30+ degree shifts. Tuesday morning when I left for work, it was 35 degrees. At 2 PM, it was 68. Picking which season to dress for – before the sun rises – sucks. Pro: I get to start wearing clothes I haven’t worn in months. Every fall, it’s like rediscovering a new wardrobe. Con: I have a hard time being excited about the new-found wardrobe, because…did I mention that the sun is not up when I get dressed? All in all, this is one of my favorite times of year. I have a hard time choosing between Spring and Fall; they both have their charms. But it’s October right now, so fall is my choice of the month. After all – there are so many holidays coming up…not to mention my birthday (Spring only has Easter). I can go outside for more than five minutes without sweating! I can sit outside with my coffee and read. I can still gaze longingly at my long leather coat, wishing for colder weather so that I have an excuse to wear it. I can wear my boots! And go shopping for new ones! And in six months when I get to watch my flowers bloom, and the tulips that I planted a couple of weeks ago start peeking out around my front windows, and the grass turns green, and the trees behind my house grow another 5 feet almost fast enough that I can see them growing, and the wind starts carrying a hint of warmth and sunshine instead of the threat of a cold drizzle…. Well, in 6 months, Spring will be my favorite. But not yet.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Have you ever had one of those days when everything seems to be coming at you at once and no matter how hard you try to keep up, you just can’t, and no amount of coffee will stimulate enough brain cells to get your mind functioning at optimal performance levels and people just keep asking you the stupidest questions ever until you just want to erect a “no talking” zone around you that goes three feet in every direction but instead you have to smile and explain one more time that yes, the copier IS the freakin’ printer - it’s the 21st century, people, and we have machines that freakin’ multitask! - and instead of reading the morning headlines you get stuck on ONE headline because that headline is telling you that a Very Important Person is going to be on base today and all you can think about is how you’re not going to be able to drive to the lake for your daily lunch/sanity break because security on base is going to be an absolute nightmare and then, to top it all off, the computers decide to get all wonky and not let you log in and get to your email or IM system that tie you to reality and you just have to keep rebooting and re-trying until you want to “accidentally” hack your computer to pieces with the decorative axe that you have hanging on your cubicle as a symbol of the Halloween season - but instead, you just pour yourself another cup of coffee and grab a piece of chocolate out of your emergency reserve (the bowl that you keep on your desk for the students) and take deep, cleansing breaths and wish you had remembered to come up with that mantra because right now you could really use one and then you finally get into your email and the first one that you see is from your husband and it has no subject line and you take an even deeper, more cleansing breath and start reading….

And suddenly everything’s all better, because he just wanted to let me know how much he loves me and can’t wait to see me when I get home tonight.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Our New TV

Our New TV
Originally uploaded by lildebbie_77.
Ok, sis, here't the actual TV, in use, in my living room. It's a thing of beauty, but that doesn't really come across in this pic. Any and all smart ass comments regarding what's on the TV are welcomed and more than expected.

And on a mostly unrelated matter (it doesn't have anything to do with the TV, but it does have something to do with how you're seeing the picture of my new TV):


My account officially expires today, October 9th. And Flickr is based in the Pacific time zone - so if you don't have a Pro account, then you're account limits are reset at midnight Pacific time on the 1st of the month. But you know what? I've already been cut off from all Pro Flickr services as of sometime this afternoon. Something just doesn't seem right with that.
Of course I paid the money this morning as soon as I realized...but I did it through PayPal and that'll take a couple of days. Grrr...I hate being absent-minded.

Playing in the Dirt

Sunday afternoon, I got to do something that I haven't done nearly enough of lately. I played in my dirt. There was a time when my best friend and I (somehow, she's still best friends with me - even after we lived together for more than 6 years; some things, I just don't question.) spent part of almost every day with our plants. One of the first things we did after moving into our first home - a trailer that should have been junked about 6 months before we moved out - was plant a garden. We potted plants for inside. We put up a table along the side of the trailer to be our "work area". Part of the "deck" (about 4 square feet of space) was our sick ward, where any plants that were looking ‘iffy’ went, so that they were guaranteed to get attention any time we went in and out of the house. We had tons of fun in that garden, and spent lots of time being silly in it, talking to the plants and trying to make our squash grow (it never really did). Of course, all this talking to plants - mixed together with two black cats and the fact that we were always up late into the night thanks to college and working in restaurants - convinced the neighborhood kids that we were witches. I heard them call us that one day when I went out to walk the dog, right before they ran shrieking down the street away from me. I am not making this up. They never came to our house on Halloween. And is it bad that we kinda enjoyed the reputation? When we left the trailer and moved into the apartment, we had to leave behind the outdoor garden. We were now on the second floor - but we had a HUGE balcony. So we simply put everything in pots. We had pots lining almost every surface. The balcony was wood, so of course when we potted and watered, dirt and water fell down on the people underneath of us. In our Twenty-something self-absorption, we didn't really dwell on that fact until our neighbors to the south put up a sheet of aluminum on the top of their patio, nailed to our balcony, to shield them from the random mud storms that could drip down on them without warning. Luckily, we got along really well with them - they even gave us furniture when we moved out. And when we moved out, we took over 30 pots of herbs, flowers and other plants off the balcony alone, not to mention the recycling bin that we were growing tomatoes in. Then there were the other 15 or so plants inside – including the African Violets that we finally learned how to keep alive.... The townhouse was a work in progress for the two years I lived there, and that's still going on today. By the time I moved in with Hubby a few months before we got married I had already started working on my new yard. The first thing I did was plant my rose bush, and the pansies and impatiens were quick to follow. But then, I started slacking off. Every few months ok, twice a year or so I do some kind of major replanting, but I don't take the time to do all the maintenance work that I used to love so much, and I never thought about it til yesterday. I figured I had just gotten lazy in my old age. But Saturday I called Best Friend and asked her to come over and play in the dirt with me ("Gardening" is way too formal a word for what we do). I needed to clean up the mess that had once been a flower garden, and I really needed to prune the rose bush. So we bought flowers and dug and cleaned and planted and arranged. And played in the dirt, and got filthy listening to Billy Joel. And loved every minute of it. And then we went weed hunting, which has to be seen to be believed because yes, weeds are actually dug up and taken home to be lovingly cared for in her back yard. Some of her favorite plants were found in fields that should have been mowed down. And nothing can compare to the excitement of finding Black-Eyed Susans growing wild right behind your back fence. And after BF left and I was clean and enjoying a 'fortified' cup of coffee, I realized what’s been missing in my yard for the past couple of years: My best friend. Playing in the dirt is way more fun when there's two.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Almost November

I'm insane. That's the only reasonable explanation I can think of. I signed up for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) again. I had so much fun last year - even if I ended up chunking half of what I wrote, and then never did anything with what was left. But I got more accomplished in that one month than I thought I could. And I'm the kind of person that needs pressure to really finish a project. Otherwise, I have absolutely no discipline. This year, I'm going to be a little more organized about the whole thing. I've done a little outlining, some character sketches.  We'll see if it makes a difference.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Is it wrong...

...that this (warning: if you don't like flash sites, don't click that link) turns me on, just a little bit? I mean....this is one of the sexiest collections I've ever seen.

Do I really need to pay back those student loans? Won't the government understand that I'm a tiny bit of a geek at heart, and that I need something from this collection?

Warning: that link above takes you to a flash site, so if you're not a fan of flash (hiya, sis), then just click here to go to the list of items up for auction (it loads very slowly, though). I re-sorted it so that the most expensive stuff came up first. And you know what's estimated to go for the most money? A replica of the Enterprise-D. For $25,000-35,0000. That's 25-35 months of student loans.

It's still damn good looking, though.

Why, Dear God, Why?

Why would you let someone befoul the coffee pot this way? I know you saw her heading towards the coffeepot. I'm sure you knew her intentions. I mean, if I had seen her with a green canister of coffee in her hand, I would have known. And I would have stopped her. But there was no one there to see, no one there to say "Wait! Please don't torture us all this way!" No one there to save my sanity.

So now, instead of sitting at my computer while enjoying that first cup of coffee and reading the days headlines, I'm sitting at the computer watching the clock move closer to 8 o'clock - the magical time when the shop down the hall with overpriced coffee opens its doors for business - and praying that I can last just Two. More. Minutes.

I mean, really. Decaf? In a library? I think someone let the devil loose in the library last night.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

I'm feeling safer every minute:

1.) Man Questioned and Misses Flight for Speaking Tamil :
A 32-year-old man speaking Tamil and some English about a sporting rivalry was questioned at Sea-Tac Airport and missed his flight Saturday because at least one person thought he was suspicious....An off-duty airline employee heard the conversation and informed the flight crew.
Parker said the man was cooperative and boarded a later flight to Texas. He told officials that he would not speak in a foreign language on his cell phone at an airport in the future.

2.) Humiliation at 30,000 Feet:
Seth Stein is an architect who flies - apparently internationally - quite a lot.
In Mr Stein's case, he was pounced on as the crew and other travellers looked on. The drama unfolded less than an hour into the flight. As he settled down with a book and a ginger ale, the father-of-three was grabbed from behind and held in a head-lock.

"This guy just told me his name was Michael Wilk, that he was with the New York Police Department, that I'd been acting suspiciously and should stay calm. I could barely find my voice and couldn't believe it was happening," said Mr Stein.

"He went into my pocket and took out my passport and my iPod. All the other passengers were looking concerned." Eventually, cabin crew explained that the captain had run a security check on Mr Stein after being alerted by the policeman and that this had cleared him. The passenger had been asked to go back to his seat before he had restrained Mr Stein. When the plane arrived in New York, Mr Stein was met by apologetic police officers who offered to fast-track him out of the airport.

3.) Last March, I went to Paris via The Netherlands. My married name is not in the front of my passport, I have friends that don't think that I actually used my own picture, and to top it all off the passport is about to fall apart after an unfortunate washing incident. International reaction to my passport?
a.) The Dutch Customs official told me if I were Dutch, my passport would be confiscated on the spot.
b.) The French Customs officials all noticed the name discrepancy (my married name is listed on the last page, under alterations or something like that).
c.) The US Customs officials noticed nothing. And they also didn't catch the nail clippers or tool-for-all-seasons pocket knife that were in my purse when I got on the plane in Atlanta. When I got on the return flight in Paris, though...well, I'm now minus a set of nail clippers and one tool-for-all-seasons pocket knife.