Monday, April 30, 2007

I Am Easily Swayed

I went to the mall this weekend, but only for the Orchid Show. I was just going to pop in the mall, look at all the orchids, swing by Sears to check out their digital camera prices, and then head right back out again.

Um ......... yeah. In between Sears and the Orchid Show was a store that had put a 20% off coupon in the paper that morning. And so began the torture of the sneakers.

I love shoes. I really have a thing for shoes. Especially funky, original-looking shoes. Right now I am gluing flower fabric onto a boring pair of shoes to make them cooler. So, I stopped at the store with the 20% off coupon, and discovered this really, really cute pair of slip-on sneakers with a kind of pink patchwork fabric. Words cannot describe how cute these sneaks were. But, even with the coupon, they would still be over ten bucks. Ten bucks?! For a pair of shoes?! Never! (I buy most of my shoes at thrift stores. Which may be why I got that funny foot infection, but anyway .....)

So I am in the store trying on the sneaks and agonizing over spending ten bucks for a pair of sneaks that, technically speaking, I did not need, when another shopper (or possibly, now that I think of it, an employee who was not wearing a name tag) walked by, stopped, and said, "Oh, those are so cute on you! And the color matches your jacket! Oh, you are going to buy them, aren't you? They're so cute!"

Yep. I bought the sneaks. But they really are cute.

Friday, April 27, 2007


Is there anything more ugly than a newly hatched baby bird? They just look like ..... mutant ..... things ...... bleeeccccchh.

I've been thinking about birds because I was in my living room the other night and I kept hearing a skritch .. skritch ... skritch noise coming from the vicinity of my air conditioner, which was not on at the time. I looked out one of the windows and there was a bird, with a twig in its mouth (um - beak?), who kept flying from a nearby tree to the back (outside) of my air conditioner. He/she was trying to build a nest in the outside fins.

Well, I couldn't remember how far apart those fins were spaced, and I had no idea if the bird could actually fit between them, and at that point I was mildly alarmed (freaked out) at the prospect that a bird could possibly build a nest inside my air conditioner, and then baby birds would hatch, and then my cat would be trying to take the air conditioner apart from the inside to get at the birds, and what if one of the birds died inside the air conditioner and then it would smell like crazy inside my apartment, and I live on the second floor so I wouldn't even be able to get to the outside of the air conditioner to get the mess out, and wait, maybe I could call the building super and she could send one of the guys over and ........... well, you get the picture.

So I went outside and took a look, and those fins are so closely spaced the bird would have to flatten itself to the width (depth?) of a sheet of newspaper to fit in between. I don't know what that bird was thinking.

Birds will nest in some pretty weird places. They used to nest up under the eaves of one corner of my building, but there weren't any real close trees for the babies to hop to while they were learning to fly, so every spring I would come home from work one day to find the Carnage of the Birds. The babies would try to fly, fail, fall to the driveway below, and pretty soon every cat in the neighborhood would be feasting. Yuck. Finally the landlord covered up the bottom of the eaves, so that got solved.

Up at the lake, birds nested one year in somebody's old charcoal grill. They flew in and out through the air holes on the side. So you could walk up to the grill, open the lid, and ..... voila! Baby birds!

Back when I lived in the trailer park (I know, I know), birds nested up under the awning over the front porch of trailer (gah! I know!) I lived in. I could go into the hallway, get up on a chair, look out this weird funky little window that was way up on the wall, and look directly into the nest. That was pretty cool.

Well, I guess I've gone on long enough about that. Anybody else have any weird-bird-nest-location stories?

Thursday, April 26, 2007

American Idol Gives Back (Or, Oh Dear God Jesus, Please Make It Stop)

Last night was American Idol Gives Back, a fundraising show for poor people in Africa and the U.S. I was anticipating a snoozefest, and oh boy was I right. What I want to know is, how much money did the Fox network make in advertising revenue for this show? I'm betting that it is as much, if not more, than was raised for charity, because it seemed like there was 10 minutes of commercials for every two minutes of show.

And oh dear Lord, did that show stink. About an hour in, I started calling my friends to see if I was the only one who thought it was a total suckfest, and it turned out I was not alone. The last 45 minutes of the show I spent shooting the breeze with my sister Texas, with the TV on mute. I un-muted only long enough to discover that ........ no one's going home. WTF? I wasted two hours of my life only to find out that they're all safe? Grrrr.

Oh, and thank you very much Ellen Degeneres, for letting us know you are donating 100G. Why not take out some billboards too, in case somebody missed the show? And Jack Black - Get this man the fuck out of my eyesight. If I never see Jack Black again it will be too soon. Ben Stiller? Ditto.

Here is what annoys me the most about these fundraising shows. After 9/11, there were all kinds of fundraisers, and Americans donated millions for the victims (well, ok, the widows/survivors of the victims). Where did that money go? I know the federal government compensated these people, but where did all the donated money go? And again, after Katrina, more fundraisers, more money raised, and the money went ..... where? I don't know. On the Idol show last night, they were showing people still displaced by Katrina two years later - why? Where did the donated money go? I want to know exactly where it went. I want to know that $45,495.33 went to Case #125786, who is a woman with three children, so she could rebuild her home. I want to know that $395.68 went to Case #245981, a twenty-three year old man, so he could take the bus back and forth from his temporary housing to his job. Is this information out there, and I am just not finding it? Because until I do, until I know exactly where the money is going, I am not donating one stinking red cent to another one of these fundraisers.

There. Whew! I feel better now.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Shriners

I just fielded a telemarketing call here at work from the Shriners. The Shriners - aren't they the ones who ride those little, teeny motorbikes in parades? And do the figure eights? And wear those weird hats (fezzes, I think they are called) with the tassels on the top?

Yeah. Those guys creep me right the hell out. I mean, why the teeny motorbikes? Do the clowns ride them in the Shrine Circus? Are they supposed to be funny, like ha-ha funny? The sight of grown men squatting over teeny, tiny motorbikes is somehow disturbing to me. I mean, why? What's the point?

I know they are a charity, and I'm sure they do lots and lots of good work, but seriously? Ewww.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

My Dad

When I was a kid, I fell on the playground at school and split my chin open. (Coordination is not my middle name.) The school nurse called my Mom, but she wasn't home. (Gasp! Mom not home? How could that be?) So she called my Dad at work to tell him to come pick me up and take me to the emergency room.

First, my Dad asked, "Which daughter?" (He had five, plus a son.)

Then, Dad asked, "Which school?" Not being entirely sure which school I attended.

Then he had to ask for directions. To the school. Because he didn't know where it was. The school that I had been attending for six years.

For some reason, that just cracks me up every time I think about it.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Weekend Update Part Deux

So, after I got Mr. Z set up Saturday, I spent some time weeding the garden. There is this weird, low-ground-cover weedy plant that would gladly take over my garden if I let it, so I pulled a bunch of that up. Then I spent some quality time with some beer on the back deck.

Sunday morning I went up to Chenango Valley State Park and walked the towpath to the old canal lock and back. (I know, I know, this is all just terribly exciting, isn't it?) And it was Turtle Day! Every spring, the first warm couple of days, all the turtles come up out of the mud and climb up on logs and stuff to bask in the sun. And if I am out walking on one of those days, it becomes Turtle Day! Because I love turtles. And I'm so original. I mean, Turtle Day! Who'd a thunk it?

So. Lots of Turtles! Which I love! I also saw a pileated woodpecker, and I heard it call, and another one called back. So there's at least two. Cool! I also saw a deer carcass. All that remained was the skull, spine, ribcage, and lots and lots of deer fur. (Do deer have hair or fur?) A guy walking by said coyotes probably got it. So Saturday I met up with Cujo, and Sunday I was in coyote country. Yay!

The weather was so nice I actually sunburned the back of my neck. Which got me wondering. All the moles I have had removed, they have almost all been on my back or my stomach, areas which see very little or no sun. And the areas that get sun all the time - arms, legs, face? No bad moles. Hmm.

I've had to call Jabba twice in the last few days to tell him to TURN DOWN THE TV. This thing just keeps dragging on and on.

Sunday afternoon I was once again enjoying quality time with some beer on the back deck when I grabbed my watercolors and did a pic of the neighbor's pine tree. And it was lots of fun to paint outside. I kinda figured it would be, but around here, you know, here where it can go six months between hitting 70, I had to wait to find out.

Oh yeah, does anybody have any splinter removal advice? That does not involve needles or knives? I've got a lulu in the palm of my hand. Good times!

Weekend Update

Looking at the post title, "Weekend Update", makes me think of Saturday Night Live. Does anyone besides me remember when that show was actually funny? Now, you could take a whole season, condense it down to funny, and it would maybe equal one hour.

Also not funny? I just spent like fifteen minutes typing a post, and then something happened, and then the whole thing just ...... disappeared. So what we have here is a totally re-created, not-quite-fresh post!

I did a lot of walking this weekend. Saturday I picked up Mom and we went up to Jones Park, where there was still snow on the ground from Monday's storm.

So we were walking down a trail, and we heard what sounded like turkeys gobbling up ahead, so we were all like "sneaky, sneaky walking" to get closer and see the turkeys. And we came across a shallow pool of water, and there were no turkeys, but we heard some "ploink, ploink" noises into the pool, and then silence. Gobbling frogs? Frog gobblers? Ya got me.

And we were walking along, and I saw a deer running through the woods, and it looked like it was going to cross the trail ahead of us, so I pointed it out to Mom, and sure enough, it crossed right in front of us, and we were all "ooh, pretty", and then came the dog that was chasing the deer. It came charging up out of the creek, saw us, skidded to a halt, and started barking its head off, and it was all crouched down in attack position, and the hackles on the back of its neck were raised, and it was barking so hard drool was flinging out of its mouth, and did I mention I was scared? Oh my God. It was a black Lab, which are usually nice dogs, and it had tags on, but I swear all I could think of was Cujo. As in, rabid dog. I looked away from the dog, said to Mom, "keep walking", and kept walking. And I was so sure that one of us was going to get chomped on at any minute. Wah! Mom was cool about it, but I was scared to death. Cause I'm a baby.

Saturday afternoon I took the charcoal grill off Mr. Z and set him in the garden. Here is a picture of Mr. Z.

Oops! Here comes my boss! Gotta run!

Friday, April 20, 2007

If I Had a Million Dollars

If I had a million dollars, I'd move someplace warmer. Not hot hot, like Florida, just someplace warmer where it only snows a couple of times a year, as opposed to here, where snow season starts in October and ends in May.

I'd buy a couple hundred acres of land, and plop my house right in the middle (well, okay, maybe closer to the road). No noisy neighbors. The property would have a stream on it where I could splash around on hot days. I'd also have an in-ground pool, just because I could. Lots of yard around the house to put in gardens. A big wrap-around covered porch where I could sit and read on rainy days. I'd leave most of the property wooded, so I could walk around in the woods when I wanted to.

I'd keep working, of course, because I think I just spent the million bucks, and plus, I'd go crazy if I didn't have something to do every day.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

"Copper", My Ass!

As previously noted, I had planned to dye my hair copper-color this past weekend. I had a package of the temporary color that washes out after 8 - 10 shampoos. So, boring Saturday night + box of hair color = certain disaster, at least at my place. (I admit it! I have no life!) My hair is now orange. Bright orange. I actually kind of like it (because I'm weird), but I am getting tired of the stares. I guess that technically I would have to be about twenty(-five) years younger to pull off this look. Oh well! Live and learn!

I saw the woodchuck in the backyard for the first time this spring this past weekend. He lives under the neighbor's shed. Nothing says "spring" like woodchucks, at least around here.

The male goldfinches are starting to turn yellow again. When they first show up in the spring, they're dull and olive-colored, just like the gals, but in a few weeks they turn yellow (Well, not all over. Just the parts of them that are supposed to be yellow, turn yellow). Which reminds me, I use one of those mesh finch feeders. The ones that look like a hanging tube sock? Well, I had put up the one I had from last year, and the finches were going to town on it, but it looked kind of ratty, so I went and bought a nice bright clean new one and hung it up. And the finches won't go near it. WTF?

The lilac, in addition to the buds, is now getting leaves! Wa-hoo!

I went for a quick walk down by the creek last weekend, because I was desperate to get outside even though the weather sucked, and I heard my first red-winged blackbird of the season. Didn't see it, but I heard it! And lest you think I'm some weird bird fanatic who can identify birds by their calls, um ......... no. But some bird songs are so distinctive, you know right away what they are. For me, they are: Blue Jay. Cardinal. Dove. Red-Winged Blackbird. Give me a few days and I might think of a couple more, but that's about it!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Stuck In My Head

"I Don't Like Mondays" by the Boomtown Rats:

And the silicon chip inside her head
Gets switched to overload
And nobody's gonna go to school today
She's gonna make them stay at home
And Daddy doesn't understand it
He always said she was good as gold
And he can see no reasons
Cause there are no reasons
What reasons do you need to be shown

Tell me why
I don't like Mondays
Tell me why
I don't like Mondays
Tell me why
I don't like Mondays
I wanna shoot the whole day down.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Screw the Snow, I Want My MTV

The snow is not as bad as expected - only about 6" so far. However, I had to run home this afternoon to meet the phone guy (my phone service was not working), only to discover that I have no power! And might not have until some time tomorrow. Heavy snow + tree limbs + power lines = not good.

So technically the phone service is fixed, but I still have no phone, because it's a cordless and did I mention that I have no power? Last June, after the floods, I had no power for five days. And it sucked. So I sure hope that this is a short-term thing, because reading by flashlight gets old real quick.

Update: I just called home and my answering maching picked up, which means ..... I HAVE POWER! Thank you NYSEG!

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow

Or not.

It's snowing right now. We got a couple of inches last night, and it started really coming down around 7:45 this morning, during my drive to work. I'd say we've got about 5" right now here in town, and it's supposed to snow all day. Two of the guys called to say they wouldn't be in; one drives a pick-up truck, and the other drives an SUV. Hello? If you're afraid to drive in the snow, why spend the extra money that an SUV costs? You might as well buy a Chevy Malibu and save yourself several thousand dollars, not to mention get a hell of a lot better gas mileage.
Just my opinion.

Friday, April 13, 2007

My Boy Toy

Back when I was 30, I started seeing a guy who was nine years younger than I. Whoo-hoo! What an ego boost! We met through mutual friends, and I was flattered when I learned that he was interested in me, because he was funny, young, and ..... drop-dead gorgeous. I swear, this guy could be Brad Pitts' twin, except with darker hair. Really. If you put a picture of the guy up next to a picture of Brad Pitt, they looked exactly alike. Ok, ok, you get the picture.

So! Cue "Rock Me" by Liz Phair. We started seeing each other. Not really dating, because I was not interested in any kind of commitment at that point. Let's just call it "friends with benefits", to be blunt. And then we started spending more and more time together, and then he started, well, irritating me. It seemed like he was always at my house, always hanging around, and even for his young age, he was pretty immature. So eventually we had some kind of big fight, I stopped returning his calls, and that was that. Until about a year or so later, when we started hanging out again, he started irritating me, and the pattern would repeat. This went on for about four or five years.

So! My point, and I do have one. Looking back, when the guy was at the "irritating me" stage, I could be pretty rude to him. Pretty blunt, and pretty impatient. I didn't really care to hear what he had to say, and I wouldn't return his calls, and blah blah blah. And it struck me that I never would have been that rude to someone I actually cared about. Someone I had feelings for. So if there is someone in your life who is treating you poorly, who doesn't seem to really care about you ..... they probably don't. Care about you, that is. And you can justify their actions any way you choose, by saying, "Oh, he's just really busy", "Oh, she's going through a bad time right now", etc., but trust me, if he/she really cared about you? They wouldn't treat you like that.

That's my little diatribe for today, and I think it would be a good idea if I re-read this post from time to time, because this little cautionary tale is mostly directed at me. I tend to excuse people's poor treatment of me, and I'm going to try not to do that anymore. Because life is too short to have assholes for friends! And if someone is irritating the crap out of me, I will let them down gently and sever the ties kindly instead of being a jerk.

I think I'm going to dye my hair copper-color this weekend. And I'm definitely going to make a rum cake because I'm jonesing for one. And the weather's gonna suck again this weekend (hellooo, Sunday snowstorm), so I'll have to invent some other indoor activities to keep me occupied.

Have a good weekend!

P.S. When I was seeing this guy, I used to immensely enjoy skeeving myself out by doing the arithmetic in my head, as in, "Let see, when I was eighteen, he was ....... nine. (shiver)".

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Not for the Faint of Heart

Rocky's fine. Whew. I took him to the vet last night about that weird goo thing under his eyelid, and ..... fibrous conjectival mass, anyone? Grrrroooss. The vet conjectured (because Rocky's not talkin') that he (Rocky, not the vet) was duking it out with another cat, and that cat snagged one of his claws up under Rocky's eyelid (yikes) causing a laceration. The laceration healed, but there was a small flap of skin left over (gross) which was still attached to the eyelid, but just barely. So the vet gets a clampy thing and some scissors, and with me and the vet tech holding onto Rocky, the vet clamped onto the goo, pulled it away from the eye area (shiver), and was fumbling for the scissors when Rocky jerked his head back. And ..... the goo thing stttrrreettched from Rocky's eye to the clamps, which were now about 6" away from Rocky's head. At this point (sorry folks, the post title shoulda warned you) I had to look away, so I'm not sure exactly what happened next, but about two seconds later the goo thing was resting comfortably in the vet's scissors and Rocky was all, La La LAA! This is fun!

So Rocky's all better. Whew. But I think I may be having nightmares about eyes and stretchy goo masses for a long time to come.

Update: P.S.: I love this vet's office - shout out to Day Hollow Animal Hospital! They're out in the sticks, so they do horses, cows, dogs, cats, the whole nine yards. If I had taken Rocky to some fancy-shmancy vet office in town, they would have been all, "well, we'll have to keep him overnight for observation, then we'll have to anesthetize him, then we'll operate, blah, blah, blah ...." My vet? Grabs the clamps and scissors and goes to town.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

My First Date

My first date was with John .... um ...... Oppenheimer? Schmittenheimer? Something like that. (Ha ha! What a great memory I have!) I was in seventh grade, and we double dated with Janet Holst (that bitch) and John's best friend, whose name escapes me (what a surprise!). I think we went to a movie or something, and then back to someone's house, where we, of course, played a kissing game (nope, I don't remember the game exactly, just that it involved going into a closet and kissing your date).

Anyway, all I really remember was getting back home, and one of my sisters commenting something along the lines of, "Oh my God! Look at her hair! Look at her clothes! She's all disheveled!" I swear, I distinctly remember the word "disheveled". We read a lot at my house. I remember my mom telling my sister to stop picking on me.

SO, I violently denied that anything untoward happened on my first date, and sat down to watch some TV. A while later, I went to the bathroom, looked in the mirror, and .... ooops. Mussed up hair, "disheveled" clothing, the whole nine yards.

And I still have no idea to this day why mom didn't raise holy hell when I walked through the door that night. Maybe the fact that she raised four other girls before I came along had something to do with it?

No More Stitches!

So the dermatologist's office called me up this morning just to let me know that the biopsy results came back benign. What a surprise! Just like the biopsies from the nine million other moles that have been burned/sliced from me!

I've reached a decision. No more "cut first, biopsy later". From now on, if Dr. Happy Knife wants to take a chunk out of me, he's got to do a biopsy first. Unless a particular mole is changing color/bleeding/scampering around my torso, it's biopsy first. Fair? I think so. And my apologies to anyone who is reading this right now while suffering through truly major medical problems, while I whine about my stitches.

Rocky has to go to the vet's tonight. Last week, I noticed that he has a weird piece of goo up underneath his upper eyelid. (Grossed out yet? I thought so.) I thought it was just normal eye goo, but it won't brush off and it doesn't go away. So of course I did just enough Googling regarding feline eye disease to scare the shit out of myself, and all I can do is wait until we get to the vet's, and the vet tells me "it's just a silly little whatever, hah hah hah, we see this all the time! I just took a q-tip and look! It's all gone!". Whew.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Ok, I confess, I have been known to watch Survivor. Also any other piece of crap on TV that catches my eye. So, last week I was watching Survivor, and there's this guy on there whose name is Dreamz. WTF? I think Lisi had it right when she said something along the lines of, "What kind of a grown man calls himself Dreamz?" Ha ha ha! Of course, "Lisi" is not exactly a standard name either.

SO, I had a dream the other night that Richard Gere divorced his wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones, so that he could hook up with me. (I KNOW they're not married, I KNOW Richard Gere is gay, it was a dream, Ok?) And I don't even like Richard Gere particularly, but that was a pretty good dream. Ahem.

I got to thinking about how, in Hollywood, if you reach a certain age, and you're not married, and you don't have any kids (Richard Gere, George Clooney, etc.), the assumption is that you're gay. And I was totally buying into that, until I realized, hey, I'm not married, I've reached a certain age, I don't have any kids ................ Ooooops. NOT THAT THERE'S ANYTHING WRONG WITH BEING GAY. But now I have to wonder ......... do people think I'm gay? Oh Lord.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Les Miserables

Please, don't be misled by the post title - this is not about Jabba the Hutt, I promise!

Right now I am reading Les Miserables during my lunchtime at work, and I'm really enjoying it, even though it's about 5,000 pages long and will take me about a million lunchtimes to finish. I have nothing against great big fat books; in fact, I really enjoy them, as long as they're interesting. War and Peace? Snore. The main problem I have with War and Peace was everybody had those Russian last names which were about 25 letters long, plus everybody had two or three nicknames, so I never knew who the hell the author was talking about. I should have used a cheat sheet. You know: Victor Nabidovakomkov = Victor Nastaiasa = Vick Blasidonokova. It might have helped.

I got some watercolors done over the weekend. Easter Sunday it was too cold/windy to go for a walk (hello, snow on Easter!), and all of the stores were closed, and I'm not religious = big fat snore. So I did some watercolors of hyacinths and sunflowers (now you're snoring), and finished up a tulip picture for my mom so I could take it to her when I went up to my sister's for Easter dinner. Which was yummy.

So, that's my boring life right now. Did anybody do anything interesting/alarming/worthy of the six o'clock news over the weekend?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Ow Ow Ow Ow Ow OWWW!

OWWW! Dam it! Why do I let them do this to me? Ow! Ow! And the frickin' incision is right square in the middle of my back, which means much hilarity will ensue when I have to contort my arms into previously unattainable positions tonight to try to clean the stitches.

Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow OW! OW! OW! OW!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


I'm going to the dermatologist in a couple of hours to have a chunk taken out of my back. My mole removals are funding this guy's kids' college educations, I'm quite sure. The last time I had this done, it left a scar on my stomach so big that people think I've had laparoscopic surgery. Not attractive. And my back looks like someone's been putting out lit cigarettes on it, from where I've had moles burned off. So I'm gonna go do it again!

And I really do not like my dermatologist's office. The front desk gals are a constantly-changing, ever-surly bunch. I called this morning to confirm the appointment, as it had been rescheduled from a few months back, and the girl was like, "Yeah, yeah, one o'clock, yeah that's right" - click. Surly at its finest!

And I'd find a new dermatologist, but you know what? I'm just too lazy to bother with it. Yes, that's right, I am so lazy that I'd rather deal with surly people and unsightly scars than have to go through the hassle with my insurance company to find a new dermatologist. Sigh.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

I Could Afford This House.

I have got to get out of my apartment building. Vinnie's TV is going to drive me flat-out, batshit insane (I know, I know, some people would say I'm already there). Click on the title above to see what I could afford!

Hey! I don't need a palace. I just need someplace to live that does not have other people living in it.