Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I didn't want to like it

I didn't even want to watch it, but I was peer pressured into watching Into the Wild with Bill.

I don't like the idea of being alone in the wilderness. The idea of wandering off into the wilderness is about as foreign to me as reading Chinese or understanding physics. Plus it scares the bejezuses out of me.

Bill read Krakauer's book years ago and really liked it and was excited to see the movie. I told him he was on his own. I wasn't interested.

Turns out I was wrong. This story is so interesting.

Of course the movie takes some liberties and there is some conjecture about the events at the end of the story, but the story is so compelling, I couldn't not watch.

I'm always so surprised when my initial visceral reaction to something is so very wrong.

But then again, being wrong is something that I've grown used to.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The good, the bad and the ugly truth

The good news is that I'm four chapters from completing the curriculum for an online course I'm going to be teaching.

The bad news is that I still have four chapters to go until I'm done with my online curriculum.

The ugly news is that I've been working all. day. long. every stupid day. I work my day job, then my teaching job, then I come home and work on my curriculum. I take an occasional break to pretend I'm a rock star, but then I'm back at it.

It's more boring and tedious than you can imagine ... or I guess you could imagine if you've been reading this blog or my other blog. I've been writing some pretty lame crap, I know.

I'm uninspired and tired. But Jenny at The Bloggess said she loved me because I posted a picture of myself on the crapper yesterday. And that is pretty much the most awesome thing ever, because that chick is awesomely hilarious in a biting sourcastic way (I'm making it my personal mission to replace the word "sarcasm" with Margaret's "sourcasm" ... just like those people did with the coffee in those commercials all those years ago ... does that make sense to anyone other than myself?). So expect more pictures of myself doing things that would embarrass my mother. (Hi mom!)

If I stay on schedule, I'll be done with my curriculum this week and I get back to my regularly scheduled life which should be including yard sitting (it's that time of the year again) and incessant rambling about things that are funny to me.

Because I used to think I was hilarious, I hope to get that way again.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Oh how we love the Fruita Fat Tire Festival

Saturday my band Riveter played the Fruita Fat Tire Festival. This was our third year playing the festival and we love it more each year.

The crowd was huge and awesome despite the fact it was pretty dang cold, but people stayed and were rocked by our hot selves.

I wrote last year about Team 'Stache. These guys are so much fun and so nice that they made us t-shirts.

Here's mine:
Classy, no?

Needless to say, we had so much fun playing this show. I can't wait until next year.

It's our dude drummer, Scotty "Boom Boom" Davis doing his best Bret Michels impression along side Punk Rock legend Bill Halen aka free sound guy.

Does it look like we're having fun? Because we totally were.

We're so cute we can even rock the shizzle out of mustaches.

Sometimes a girl needs sometime to read an atlas. What? Jealous?

This was actually taken while Laurena, Kelley and I were getting ready for the show in the bathroom of Over the Edge Sports. We neglected to tell them what we were doing and some of the patrons seemed a bit miffed we spent so much time in there spraying glitter and fluffing our hair.

Our rock star lives are so tough.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Attack of the stomach

For the last couple of years Margaret has an on-again, off-again relationship with monster in her stomach. Sometimes she's fine and sometimes she isn't. Today she isn't.

I think she's reacting to all the crappy food that Bill lets her eat.

While my mom was here, she and Bill would go to Sam's Club while I was at class and stock up on sugar cereals and packages of cookies and crackers and cheese.

Recently I stopped eating this kind of food in an effort to made myself a healthier person. Bill continues to eat the crap and feed it to my kid. So it's all Bill's fault.

OK, OK, it isn't all Bill's fault that my kid is sick, but it's so much easier to have someone to blame. Having to come to terms with my kid's delicate stomach is much harder.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My double Doh day

When Margaret was in kindergarten she got a report card that said she was still learning how to keep her hands and feet to herself. I was horrified that my kid was one of those kids; you know the ones that don't keep to themselves.

She seemed to have gotten better about that over the last year or at least I thought her had.

Click over here to read about my kid's anger issues. Double dirty Doh!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Is there a grace to growing old?

When I look in the mirror I see tired bags under my eyes and gray in my hair. I just spend a chunk of my hard-earned cash on several vials of potions to help my skin look better, less lined and old. And I go to the salon regularly to get my gray covered (it used to be because I wanted blonde hair ... now it's a necessity. Doh!)

I wear sunscreen on my face everyday and wear a hat and sunglasses when possible outdoors. I want to preserve what's left of my youthful skin (of course, I want to avoid more skin cancer, too). Must. Not. Look. Old.

But then I see people like Priscilla Pressley:
and I think, "Why would she do that to herself?" When she talks her upper lip doesn't move, nor does she seem to have much expression in her face. She's 63 years old and she's turned her face into a mask. Is looking old so horrible that we chose this instead?

It seems so.

At lunch today I was watching a show on the CMT station (yeah, I have no excuse for why) where some girls are trying out for a traveling singing and dancing group or something. One of the contestants is 37 (my age) and she looked pretty good, but the judges kept calling her an old dog and suggesting she couldn't learn anything new.

'the hell?

What ever happened to growing old gracefully?

Monday, April 21, 2008

Blurzerb, zert, guglug

Between the gas and oil fumes emanating from Bill and the grinding of my overworked brain, I'm more than a bit fried.

I grapple (I so wanted to type "scrapple" there — while living in Pennsylvania a friend once asked a deli counter woman what scrapple was. She replied, "Well, it's ... uh ... scrapple." Warning enough, no?) with common words and have to think really hard to get them out.

I can't even muster a witty twitter this morning. And I have no pithy repartee on the Rock of Love Reunion show yesterday — despite the fact that seeing Heather grab Daisy's weave and punch her in the head over and over was beyond awesome.

Gah, I becoming ... slow and dull ... shoot me now.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

If they didn't already

the neighbors are going to now ...

Bill got "the bike" the started. He's still got some issues to work out, like a sticking carburetor, but the ole Triumph is running.

When I called Bill on my way home from band practice last night, he sounded giddy. Then ecstatic when he revealed that he got the bike to turn over. I was like he won the lottery.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

RIP Green Pants

Anyone who knows me in the real world and outside of work* knows that for the last four years I've been wearing a pair of Old Navy cotton capris almost every day during the spring and summer.

Every year when it would get nice enough to start wearing capris I would bring out my favorite green pants. I would finger the fraying seams and worn fabric and wonder how many more years I could get out of my beloved green pants. Then I'd worry about what I was going to do when the knees wore through or a seam split.

This spring was no exception. I unfolded my trusty green pants noticing the stains and wear was getting quite noticeable. I didn't care. I love my green pants, so on they went.

Then two weekends ago, we decided to take Margaret to the movies. As I was hauling my fat ass into the back seat of my mom's new car a tragedy happened.

The fabric that once covered my ample left buttock gave way with a hideous scream. I knew immediately what happened. I jumped out of the car only to witness rolls of gelatinous blubber oozing out of the tear of my green pants.

The fabric split on the left hip area; not on a seam, but right between the seam and the back pocket.

Margaret laughed heartily at my ripped pants. I wanted to cry.

My mom offered a few suggestions on how to attempt a repair, but I knew it was a lost cause. My beloved green pants are dead.

I tried to throw them away, but that just seemed too sad. So now they are in a heap on my closet floor waiting for their trip to the land fill.

Oh green pants, I will miss you.

P.S. I went back through my iPhoto to find some pictures of me wearing my green pants. Out of the 5,730 photos I have this is the only one of me wearing my green pants.
Moral of the P.S. is that I don't have many pictures of myself. Huh.

(* People who only see me at work would be aghast that I have loved a pair of green pants, as I only wear black to work. Really. Only black every day. What? It's easy and I'm lazy.)

Monday, April 14, 2008

In case you were wondering ...

this is what a ’69 Triumph motorcycles looks like in the back of a Ford Explorer:

And this is what it looks like out of it:

Saturday, April 12, 2008

It's in and he's on his way home

Bill sent me this picture from his cell phone yesterday:

It's my father's 1969 Triumph motorcycle, partially disassembled and loaded in the back of the 1999 Ford Explorer — both of which are gifts from my mother. Both of which are essentially gifts for Bill.

He's been salivating over that motorcycle ever since he first saw it 9 years ago sitting in my dad's storage shed. And now it's on its way to Grand Junction.

Bill's original plan was to rent a trailer and pull the motorcycle home. But U-Haul will not rent trailers to people driving Ford Explorers. Nice vote of confidence for our new-to-us car.

Then he was going to use my mom's snowmobile trailer (and leave the snowmobiles sitting in the dirt until he brought it back in June), but then he finally decided to disassemble as much as possible and get the neighbors to help him load it in the back.

When he and my mom arrived in Truckee Thursday afternoon, he barely let my mom in the front door before he began the quest to get the motorcycle out of the storage shed at the back of the house.

Luckily for him the 10 feet of snow that had been blocking shed access had mostly melted. Then he fussed and fretted and made calls and focused all his energy yesterday on how he was going to get that motorcycle home.

I know Bill to be a guy that likes to get the job done, but he was obsessed with that bike. Obsessed with getting it home.

Barring any unfortunate incident between here and where ever he is in Nevada (knock on wood), that mission will be over sometime tonight.

Wish him luck.

Oh and if you happen to know anything about Triumph motorcycles, lemme know, as we're still not sure of the model (and the title is sitting in my parent's safe ... and my mom doesn't know the combination ... doh!).

ETA: Oh never mind. Bill researched the good ole Internets last night and found out that it's a 1969 Triumph TR6R Tiger 650.

Friday, April 11, 2008

1974 Weight Watchers Cards

Sometime back, Candy Boots found a stack of Weight Watchers recipe cards from 1974 and posted them along with her comments on her site.

Every time I see them, I am immediately turned into a 14-year-old boy. I get totally distracted and completely absorbed in laughing at these cards.

So now that Lynn linked to them today on our Haute Mamas site, I've become utterly useless (not that I wasn't before).

The one that gets me — and — into the most trouble is this one.

Richie and I spent several days a few years back talking about nothing other than the certain word that we learned which was associated with that recipe.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Gramma driver

My mom has this way of driving where it doesn't matter if she's accelerating or not, but it always seems like you're slowing down.

To say she's a conservative driver is a big understatement so I was not at all surprised to have this conversation with Bill yesterday an hour after he and my mom had left for their trip to California.

Me: Where are you guys?

Bill: Well, your mom forgot she had to get gas so we had to stop at Sam's Club.

Bill: Then she forgot she wanted to take her shoes off, so we had to stop so she could take her shoes off.

Bill: Then she forgot she wanted to take her coat off, so we had to stop so she could take her coat off.

Me: Ha-ha.

Bill: So we're just outside of Fruita. And I forgot I wanted to take my pants off so we're going to have to stop for that shortly ...

Plus, she's insisting that they not drive over 65 mph ... for some gramma reason that I don't understand.

And don't think that Bill will be able to drive faster while she sleeps because on our trip from California to Colorado when I was just out of high school, any time I went over 70 she'd wake up enough to say, "SLOW DOWN."

She has some sort of internal speedometer. It's a little scary.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Bye Mama

I don't know what her problem is? I mean why would anyone want to leave our house?

For the past 6 weeks, my mom has been staying in our house, sharing a room with her precocious ... er, I mean, precious 7-year-old granddaughter. She got an entire drawer in Margaret's dresser and a spot in her closet for hanging stuff. We shared our bathroom with her and gave her room for her stuff. What else could a grandma want?

And while we were at work, the cats and the dog kept her company ... oh wait, she doesn't like animals that much and she especially hates them to touch her.

So what if she has her own roomy house with her own bedroom and her own bathroom ... OK, three bedrooms and three bathrooms without a dog or cat in sight.

I mean we only called her once to come get us because Bill and I decided to share an entire bottle of tequila (Hornitos, of course) with our friends. We'll just forget that Bill forced her to take us to Weiner Dog. She got the last laugh in in that we called at 10 p.m. ... yeah, we're not the late-night partiers we once were.

But whatever.

The good news is that she's going home to get her house ready to sell, to sort through the garage full of my dad's prize possessions and then she's going to move here.

So even though she won't move into our tiny house with us now, she is moving here and that's awesome news indeed.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

1943 Guide to Hiring Women

The following is an excerpt from the July 1943 issue of Transportation Magazine. This was written for male supervisors of women in the work force during World War II.

"Eleven Tips on Getting More Efficiency Out of Women Employees: There's no longer any question whether transit companies should hire women for jobs formerly held by men. The draft and manpower shortage has settled that point. The important things now are to select the most efficient women available and how to use them to the best advantage.

Here are eleven helpful tips on the subject from Western Properties:

1. Pick young married women. They usually have more of a sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters, they're less likely to be flirtatious, they need the work or they wouldn't be doing it, they still have the pep and interest to work hard and to deal with the public efficiently.

2. When you have to use older women, try to get ones who have worked outside the home at some time in their lives. Older women who have never contacted the public have a hard time adapting themselves and are inclined to be cantankerous and fussy. It's always well to impress upon older women the importance of friendliness and courtesy.

3. General experience indicates that "husky" girls - those who are just a little on the heavy side - are more even tempered and efficient than their underweight sisters.

4. Retain a physician to give each woman you hire a special physical examination - one covering female conditions. This step not only protects the property against the possibilities of lawsuit, but reveals whether the employee-to-be has any female weaknesses which would make her mentally or physically unfit for the job.

5. Stress at the outset the importance of time the fact that a minute or two lost here and there makes serious inroads on schedules. Until this point is gotten across, service is likely to be slowed up.

6. Give the female employee a definite day-long schedule of duties so that they'll keep busy without bothering the management for instructions every few minutes. Numerous properties say that women make excellent workers when they have their jobs cut out for them, but that they lack initiative in finding work themselves.

7. Whenever possible, let the inside employee change from one job to another at some time during the day. Women are inclined to be less nervous and happier with change.

8. Give every girl an adequate number of rest periods during the day. You have to make some allowances for feminine psychology. A girl has more confidence and is more efficient if she can keep her hair tidied, apply fresh lipstick and wash her hands several times a day.

9. Be tactful when issuing instructions or in making criticisms. Women are often sensitive; they can't shrug off harsh words the way men do. Never ridicule a woman - it breaks her spirit and cuts off her efficiency.

10. Be reasonably considerate about using strong language around women. Even though a girl's husband or father may swear vociferously, she'll grow to dislike a place of business where she hears too much of this.

11. Get enough size variety in operator's uniforms so that each girl can have a proper fit. This point can't be stressed too much in keeping women happy."

As amazingly obtuse these are, I can't argue with No. 11 — there's nothing worse than a stack full of smalls and no x-larges for us big uns.

Speaking of big uns, let's address No. 3, shall we?

Speaking from experience, "husky" girls aren't more even tempered, they are more hungry. But I do have to say that the reference to "their underweight sisters" was quite delightful.

I'm going to stop calling skinny girls "skinny" and start calling them my "underweight sisters." I think they'll like that.

When tattoos go wrong ...

Very wrong.

(Thanks Markel for forwarding this to me. Nice way to start the morning.)

Monday, April 07, 2008

8 years and counting ...

The traditional gifts for the 8th wedding anniversary is something made from either bronze or ceramic.

Let's see. Bill and I are celebrating our 8th anniversary today maybe we should get something like this:
We could save money in that ... uh, yeah, right. Eight years and we still haven't figured out the meaning of the words "savings account."

Or this:

Everyone knows how much we likes ourselves some nekkid goddess and cupid sculptures.

The modern gift for the 8th wedding anniversary is something made of linen or lace.

So we could look for things like this:
Linen is oh-so practical for a guy who works in a greasy machine shop all day.

So this?

Um, do you really want your lingerie to blend in with your skin and extrude your fat rolls out? Because if the answer is yes, then that is all me. But I'm thinking, yeah, no.

So I guess Bill and I will have to go with our usual gifts which is constant love, thankfulness that we found each other and a heaping dose of goofiness. And just to mix it up this year, we're going to throw in a little backyard landscaping — because we're so romantic like that.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Funny shit

This gal is hilarious. In her last post she wrote this:

In more personal news, I planted grape hyacinth bulbs in the planter outside my front door. They have sprung but not yet bloomed. A few of them look a little corky. And by corky I mean retarded. I think they would have done much better than they are now if people would quit shitting in my planter, leaving malt liquor bottles in my planter, sprinkling pistachio hulls in my planter and otherwise putting things into my planter which are not PLANTS or at least NOT ANY MORE.

People can be such jerks.

I’ve thought about making a small but decorative sign that would say something like, “If you don’t feel like picking up your trash and throwing it away, imagine how psyched I am about doing it. Not even a little bit. At least empty your bottles before chucking them in so I don’t get soaked by King Cobra at 8am on my way out the door to work. And if you really have to go to the bathroom so BAD that you choose to crap in my planter, I am guessing that you are in very bad shape or are dead from pooping out all of your vital organs that last time. That loggage was monster. Was it better or worse than the last time I had to clean up human feces? When it was in a pair of tighty-whiteys sitting on top of the Burger King bag the culprit had wiped his (because you know it was) ass with? The jury is out.”

Now that's some funny shit, people.

Can't blog ... working ...

No time ... stressing ... rushing ... waiting ... trying not to tear my hair ....

Just click over here and comment to win some jewelry already!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

The honeymoon is over

Bill flew out yesterday to do a consulting job for the Department of Defense's unmanned robotics project (I know, he's all fancy). I called him on my way home from band practice last night around 9:30 (he left from here yesterday morning around 11 a.m.).

Let me preface the rest of this story by pointing out that Bill teaches math and is very interested in his kids having a strong foundation in math.

I was telling a story about how Margaret was wowing my mom and I with her understanding of fractions at dinner last night. I was expecting an enthusiastic response but instead I got crickets.

I immediately thought of those cell phone commercials about dropped calls and I was all, "Hello ... hello!"

And Bill goes, "Oh hey yeah, good story."

What? I then asked him if he was watching TV instead of listening to me (honestly sometimes I'd rather watch TV than listen to me, but still ... ) and he was all, "Uh, no, uh, I was just a little tired."

Me: Dude, you feel asleep while I was talking to you?

Him: Uh, no not really.

Me: OK then what did I say?

Him: You said, 'Mar was writing down fractions'... and then ... the rest of what you said.

Me: 'The rest of what I said'? You totally feel asleep while I was sharing another facet of our daughter's genius.

Him: I'm tired, it's almost midnight here.

Me: **crickets**

Monday is our 8th wedding anniversary. I feel safe to say the honeymoon is finally over.


Over at the Haute Mamas, we're giving away jewelry. Free jewelry. Free nice handmade jewelry. Come on, click it, you know you want to.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Kids who are awesome

I write a lot about how awesome my kid is, but believe it or not there are some other kids that are uber cool as well. Shocking, I know.

Below is video proof of the awesome powers of my dear friends' triplets:

Make sure you check out Chance's face on the left and watch for the cinnamon as it comes out his nose. Like I said people, awesome.

For those unaware, the cinnamon challenge is to ingest a heaping spoonful of cinnamon without any sort of liquid. Just the thought makes me start to gag. And apparently multitudes of people are doing this and posting their reactions on YouTube.

Oh Internets, what did we do before you existed?

Luckily for us, those plucky youngsters weren't satisfied with cinnamon challenge and create this gem:

I love the turkey noises in the background and Piper, camerawoman extraordinaire, telling Chance to stay behind her.

Like I said, awesome all the way around.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

To hell with accountability

New! Gmail Custom TimeTM

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Pre-date your messages
You tell us what time you would have wanted your email sent, and we'll take care of the rest. Need an email to arrive 6 hours ago? No problem.

Mark as read or unread
Take sending emails to the past one step further. We let you make emails look like they've been read all along.

Make them count
Use your custom time stamped messages wisely -- each Gmail user gets ten per year.

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Forget your finance reports. Forget your anniversary. We'll make it look like you remembered.

Learn more about Gmail Custom Time »

Wow! I mean, forget about being conscientious, you can use Google's new "Custom Time" feature to lie for you. This makes me want to throw up.

ETA: Doh! I'm so gullible! April fools on me. Click here to read more.

Making the cut

I love this picture of Margaret. I love how her hair is all long and wind blown. (You can click here to read a tiny blurb I wrote about this day over here.)

Saturday she's getting it cut into a shortish bob. As much as I like long hair and I love fixing my daughter's hair into braids and ponytails, she does not.

She insists on wearing it down and messy and full of leaves. She doesn't like to comb or brush or otherwise fuss with her hair, so it's coming off again.

We cut her hair in kindergarten and it looked cute and she liked it. Why do we keep thinking that will change? She's Margaret and she doesn't care of her hair's a mess. I can live with that.