Thursday, July 31, 2008

Rember When?

So, I'm reading this article about a new Alzheimer's drug named "Rember". Which is obviously a play on the word "remember", and pretty tasteless, if you ask me.

But now, every time I think about it, all I can think is, "Rember when that word had two more letters?" Heh.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


So! I am back from the dentist. And I was there, having my teeth cleaned, and all was going fine (other than, of course, BEING AT THE DENTIST), and then the dentist came in and was checking my computer chart with the hygienist.

And they're talking about a wisdom tooth, and I'm thinking, "I had my wisdom teeth pulled when I was 18". And then they're talking about the molar that might need extracting, the one that they discussed with me before, and I'm thinking, "nobody said ANYTHING about pulling any of my teeth". And they just kept going on and on, and none of it sounded anything like me, and I finally said, "WHOSE CHART are you looking at?!"

Not mine! Folks, they were looking at the chart for ANOTHER PATIENT. The one who was coming in AFTER me. And I feel sorry for THAT patient, because it sounds like her teeth are in pretty bad shape.

Then! I get back to the office, and the shelter calls. It turns out that a nasty, often FATAL virus has been introduced to the shelter, possibly from an incoming stray. The shelter worker told me that the last time this virus made the rounds, last year, it killed eighteen kittens and four adult cats. Needless to say, I will be holding onto my fosters for at least a few more days (yay!), until things clear up at the shelter. Right now the shelter is on "lockdown" (no cats in, no cats out).

Oh! And it turns out that the hygienist has a daughter with the same first name as me. So that makes two of us. It's not that unusual of a first name; it's just that nobody seems to name their kids that. (No, it's not Bertha!)

Right now I'm just relieved that the dental torture is over (until next time). And the cats get to stay with me for a while longer. Bonus! And I'm thinking about all those cats in the shelter and hoping they all make it.

Updated to Add: Oh yeah! I forgot! The dentist informed me that I have "geographic tongue". Sounds like some kind of porn term, no? (Warning: Do NOT google that term. DO. NOT. Not unless you want to see a bunch of pictures of people with their tongues sticking waaaaayyy out. Gross.)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Getting Ready For A Bad Day

Tomorrow morning, I have to go to the dentist for my six-month cleaning. The last time I was at the dentist, bad things happened. As far as that goes, bad things happen pretty much every time I go to the dentist. My teeth have ached for two weeks now in anticipation of this visit.

Tomorrow after work, the foster cats* go back to the shelter. They are sending over a volunteer to "net" Evil Momma, because she is still not handle-able. I've got an ache in the pit of my stomach just thinking about those beautiful little guys and girls going back, but I know it's time they find permanent homes, now while they're still cute and small and adorable and people "ooooh" and "aaaaah" over them.

So it's gonna be a pretty bad day, tomorrow is. Time to square my shoulders. I just have to keep reminding myself that it's not the end of the world, that it could be worse, and that two days from now, it will all be over with.

*You know, I've been thinking about putting a disclaimer in the posts about the foster cats. Something along the lines of, "No, I did not let my cats breed indiscriminately. I do foster work for local animal shelters. I take in cats that OTHER PEOPLE let breed indiscriminately and take care of them and their kittens until the babies are weaned and they can find permanent homes." Because I would hate it if anyone thinks that I am one of those asshats who fail to neuter their pets, let the cat get preggers, and then dump her and the kittens at a shelter. The End.

Hmmm. Guess I'm a little sensitive today.


Monday, July 28, 2008

Fun With Alzheimer's!

I picked up my Mom the other day so we could go to the flea market, and she insisted on taking her bathrobe along, calling it her "coat".

I could have corrected her, but I didn't. I mean, it's the flea market, for Pete's sake! Even with a bathrobe, she's still not gonna look any stranger than 90% of the people already there.

One thing that flips some members of my family out, and I can't seem to get worked up over, are Mom's pants. She insists on wearing pants of the extreme high-water variety. If, by chance, she should happen to put on a pair of pants that are actually the correct length, that is, not showing several inches of ankle/shin, she rolls them up until she is sure that they are the correct length, i.e., "the flood's a comin'!"

As I said, I just can't get myself worked up over this. She's 84 years old, her husband's dead, and she's got Alzheimer's disease. Life's dealt her a pretty shitty hand lately, and if she wants to go out in public in pants so short that they're practically capris, that's ok by me. And besides, I've been noticing an awful lot of old ladies lately wearing pants that are way too short. Is it some kind of octogenarian fashion statement? I have no idea, but at least Mom's not alone in her fashion sense.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Art Appreciation

For the longest time, I couldn't figure out why the kittens seemed to be fascinated by the pictures on the walls. Then one day it hit me: They could see their moving reflections in the glass!

So it wasn't my amazing artistic talent after all.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Hitchhiker

Last Tuesday, I went to Greenwood Park. A local summer camp was having a day program there, and so the lake was full of children. SCREAMING children.

Now, I have written before about screamers. Kids who are in serious need of a reset of their "on/off" switch. Imagine a whole lake full of them. Imagine that lake surrounded by lovely rolling hills which were echoing the sound. It was bedlam. And you know, I was thinking, "I'll bet the lifeguards are wearing earplugs", but then I realized that they probably are not allowed to wear earplugs, so that they can hear if a swimmer calls for help. And then I wondered how they would even hear anyone calling for help anyway, what with the decibel level of the screaming and all. And then I hiked further into the woods, to get away from the goddam screaming kids.

When I got back to my car, I found that I had gained a little friend:

This little bee, heavy with pollen, was resting comfortably on one of my hiking boots. I think he was trying to hitch a ride to get away from the screaming children. I gently shook him onto the grass. After all, if he wants to get away, all he needs to do is spread his wings and fly.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

It's A Good Thing I Didn't Go Out For Lunch ......

......... because, apparently, the bottom hem of the back of my slip has been tucked into the (interior) waistband of my (somewhat sheer) dress since some time this morning.


In my defense, YES I AM wearing underwear! and pantyhose! Which leads me to a question:

You know how pantyhose have those little ........ um ......... crotch panels in them? Are those crotch panels actually supposed to be, like, underwear? Are you not supposed to wear actual underwear when you are wearing pantyhose? Because I find that idea a little bit distressing. When I get dressed in the morning, first I put on underwear, then pantyhose. Have I been DOING IT WRONG all these years? Because even if I have, I am going to continue to do so. The idea of wearing pantyhose without underwear underneath is skeeving me out.

But please tell me, oh Internet - am I DOING IT WRONG??

Ha! I Win.

Last night, I fixed my broken toilet using only a pair of needle-nose pliers and a twist tie.

Actually, the only reason I was attempting toilet repair is because I am desperately trying to forestall having the super send over a repairman until this latest load of foster cats is out of the house. I am fairly certain that the landlord would be a little, um ........ concerned if he discovered that I currently have FIVE cats (and three litterboxes!) in my apartment. (The per-apartment cat limit is two. But actually, now that I think about it, I mean, Evil Momma is ONE cat, and the kittens (all four of them!) count as ONE cat also, no? I mean, they're kittens, not full cats, no? No? Just like at the grocery store, if I get one jar of spaghetti sauce, one bag of apples, and ten cans of cat food, I can still go in the "eight-items-or-less" line, no? Because there's ONE jar of spaghetti sauce, and even though there's eight apples in the bag, it's ONE bag of apples, and the ten cans of cat food go under the "cat food" category, and thus count as ONE item, right?, so I only have THREE items, no? No? No. Yeah. I thought so. Seriously, I have never actually had the nerve to try this little stunt. I am afraid the people in line behind me might kill me.)

Movie Review - "The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane"

Wow. Now there's a grim little flick. Jodie Foster plays a creepy adolescent who's got a few too many secrets.

At first I thought that it was a made-for-TV movie, thanks mainly to the cheesy soundtrack, which was chock-full of that seventies' "wocka-wocka" music more common to porn films, but the scene with Martin Sheen and the hamster (no, not porn (heh)), made me think it was a theatrical release, cause I kinda doubt they would have shown that on TV back in the day.

Oh, and Jodie Foster's nude scene made me pretty uncomfortable. I mean, she was fourteen when she made the movie, and she was portraying a thirteen-year-old, and they had to put in a nude scene? But then I checked it out on IMDB, and it turns out that her older sister did the scene, because Jodie refused. Good for you, Jodie! But yo, older sister, what were you thinking? The character's thirteen, for pete's sake!

So! All in all it was interesting, even the over-the-top hamminess by the woman playing the landlady. (Alexis Smith, who, according to IMDB, was in, like, a billion movies. I wonder if she over-acted in all of them.) But if you're squeamish, look away when Martin Sheen picks up the hamster. A word to the wise.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Salt Springs State Park

Last Monday, I went to Salt Springs State Park. (After fielding the first emergency phone call from the office, which came in at 10 a.m. Sigh.) I had never been there before, and the driving directions on the web site would have had me going quite a bit out of my way, so I went to a local community web site, BC Voice, to ask for directions. Now, I did this with quite a bit of trepidation, as the bloggers on BC Voice can be absolutely vicious. I mean, you ask for driving directions, and someone will chime in with, "whatsa matter? you too stoopid to read a f**king map?" Seriously. If you want to check out some really mean people, check out BC Voice. I'm not going to link to it here, because they would probably hunt me down and kill me.

ANYhow, I got my directions (thank you, nice person!), and off I went. Which is always an adventure, because I am fully capable of getting lost at a 4-way intersection. But! I managed to make my way there, through some very pretty countryside and places I hadn't been to in years. Hi, Quaker Lake! Hi, Laurel Lake! Hi, Brackney! Although I am sad to report that the McMansionization of Quaker Lake is well under way. When I was a kid, Quaker Lake was surrounded by small family cottages. Now, there are houses the size of freaking hotels on the lake. Kind of sad.

So! I get to the park, pull in the parking area, and the first thing I see are some llamas:

Heck, I don't know why they were there! They just were!

There were waterfalls:

And salamanders:

(Or is this guy an eft? I always get my reptile terms mixed up.)

And there was bee balm:

I love bee balm. It looks like fireworks. (Now here's where someone chimes in and says, no, that's not bee balm, you idiot, that's (insert plant name here)).

So! This is a beautiful place, and I managed not to get (too) lost on the trails, and I'll definitely be going back again. If I can find it.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dresses and Pantyhose and Heels, Oh My!

I spent last week in shorts and tank tops. About half of every day my feet were in hiking boots, and the rest of the time I went barefoot.

A good portion of the time, my feet and the rest of me were plunked down in the kiddy pool. Oh! There was an emergency on Sunday when the kiddy pool developed a leak, necessitating a quick trip to Crapmart for a replacement. Luckily they still had some in stock, although back-to-school stuff is already replacing a lot of the summer fun stuff.

Lots of time was spent down by the creek, eating blackberries and raspberries and splashing around in the cool water and digging up wildflowers for my gardens. (Nothing endangered! Just beach peas and crown vetch and daisies and monkey flowers, all of which get mowed down when the town comes to mow the floodwall.)

There's lots of birds down there:

But now, it's back to work. Time to earn a living. *sigh.*

Didja Miss Me?

Well, did ya? (It's ok - you can lie!)

Here's a quick pic:

That's Watkins Glen. You can get an idea of the scale by the people standing on the trail on the left and the person standing on the bridge in the middle. I'd been here before, but this time I took a guided tour up the gorge, which was interesting. Don't let me forget to tell you about the flip-flops! And the Aldi's bag!

Right now, I have to tackle the Giant Pile 'O Mail on my desk. Back soon!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Bye For Now!

In just a few short hours, I will leave the office. And I don't have to come back until ....... a week from Monday! Suh-WEET!

Now, since I don't have a computer at home (sob), and the local library keeps pretty funky summer hours, my internet access will be spotty (sob).

So! I'll try to check in when I can, and I'll be thinking of all of you, hard at work, while I am eating yummy things and drinking and sleeeeeeeping and hiking and drinking and attending summer festivals and reading books in the back yard and eating soft-serve ice cream and ................ ok, I'll stop now.

See you soon!

Gratuitous Cute Kitten Pics

Oh hai! (It cracks me up the way his tail is sticking out of the side of the box.)

Pile On Evil Momma:

All four in the same shot (that's getting harder and harder, as they become more independent):

Front to back: Little Girl (formerly Number Three), The Runt, Fluffy and Tuffy. Do you think they have enough toys?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Shark, Jumped

Actually, I don't think it can count as jumping the shark if the show sucked from the very beginning.

But hey! Did I call it or what?! I'm talking about "As the Wrench Turns", the new animated series on PBS featuring the guys from the NPR show "Car Talk".

Did anybody besides me attempt to watch this train wreck? No? I didn't think so. Actually, it was EVEN WORSE than I imagined, if that's even possible. Honestly, I could only watch a minute or two at a time before my head started to hurt and I had to change the channel. But then I kept switching BACK, like maybe a miracle had occurred in the last few minutes and the show suddenly got good. Nope, didn't happen.

But! I finally popped in a tape (I know, I KNOW! I am ancient!) of the series "Carrier", also presented by PBS. It's about life aboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, and it is absolutely fascinating. THIS is the kind of interesting, in-depth thing PBS does extremely well.

So! I watched (as much as I could stand of) "As the Wrench Turns", so you don't have to, and I can confirm that it's truly, truly bad. And if you want to catch PBS at its best, check out "Carrier".

Oh! And don't let me forget to tell you about the time I auditioned for the Air Force Band. True story!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Ear Worm

If you are cold
Here, take my sweater

Here, take my sweater

Here, take my sweater
Here, take my sweater
Here, take my sweater Here, take my sweater Here, take my sweater Here take my sweater heretakemysweaterheretakemysweaterheretakemysweaterheretakemysweaterOHFORTHELOVEOFGODTAKETHEDAMNSWEATERSO

help me.

The Dude's Wearing Peds

(Uh-oh, here I go again, blogging instead of actually, say, WORKING. *Sigh*.)

But seriously! I just noted that one of my male co-workers is wearing Peds with his sneakers. Do they even MAKE man Peds? Because if not, that means he's wearing WOMAN peds. WHY?

In other sartorial office news, Hack-Em-Up-Ed, he of the t-shirt with a cartoon squirrel and the caption "I'd like to put my nuts in your mouth" on it, is currently wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the words "Got Wood?" in print about 10" high on the front. In his defense, there is a logo for a lumber company on the back, but STILL. Why the questionable t-shirts, Hack-Em-Up?

OK. Back to work, dammit.

Must ......... Get .......... Busy.............

Ok, so I have next week off, so that means there are nine thousand things I need to get done here at work before I go. And so far I have done approximately ...... none of them. And I'm sitting here blogging.

Wow. I don't even know what's wrong with me (I mean, other than the obvious). I am usually Johnny-on-the-spot, getting everything done waaaayy ahead of time, and here I am stalling. And stalling. And stalling. And the 941 needs to be filed, and notes have to be left for the temp, and I need to enter all of those invoice hours, and ....... yeah ........ not so much.

Oh! But I did watch a cute movie last night. "Lars and the Real Girl". It requires a real suspension of disbelief, but once you do that, it's a really enjoyable movie.

One more thing: Someday ME 2, are you out there? I see that you've pulled your blog, and I just wanted to make sure you're ok.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

No crunch! Crunch is bad!

So! I've been thinking about all the tasty stuff I'm going to eat while I'm on vacation next week (woot!). Ok, technically I'm not actually going anyplace, other than doing some day trips, but I have the week off from work, so that counts as vaca, right? Right? Please tell me that it counts!

And I am going to make Alpo (a tasty, tasty sandwich spread which is not actually dog food but which does have a rather ...... um...... unfortunate appearance, thus leading my lovely dysfunctional family to give it the name Alpo), and crab dip, and I'm going to possibly bust my grill out of the shed and have a steak or two, and I may actually splurge and have a Subway sub.

Now, I don't usually go to Subway, because they cut their sub rolls the wrong damn way. The only CORRECT way to cut a sub roll is horizontally down the side, and Subway does this funky cut-it-down-from-the-top technique which is just NOT RIGHT, but I have been jonesing for a meatball sub (no cheese, though - also WRONG) for quite a while, and have been holding out due to my oh-my-holy-hell-gas-is-four-bucks-a-gallon budget. (Can-I-put-any-MORE-dashes-in-this-post? Let's-see!)

So! A relatively recent addition to the franchise market in this area is Quiznos. And I was thinking, maybe Quiznos instead? But then I seemed to recall a Quiznos TV commercial in which they talk about their TOASTED sub rolls and how the rolls are CRRRRUNCHY and oh no no no that is just WRONG.

Sub rolls should not crunch! Sub rolls need to be springy yummy white bread with no nutritional value and not much taste at all, so as not to distract from the delicious fillings inside. Seriously, the thought of biting into a sub and having the bread go CRRRUUNNCH is just wrong on so many levels I don't know how to deal with it. Besides which, the crumb factor has got to be out of sight.

So! How do you prefer your sub rolls? CRRUNNCHHY, or nice and soft and comforting, the way God intended?

Oh! And while you're answering my possibly insane question, please scroll down to the post below (unless you're squeamish about bugs) and help me out there, too. Please?

What the Hell IS This?!

Okay, first, a lovely bluebird, down by the creek. See it? Right there in the middle of the picture? Oh, I love bluebirds. And they are relatively uncommon in this area, so seeing them is always a treat. WARNING: Do not scroll past the bluebird if you are squeamish about bugs. You've been warned.


Oh my gah, what the holy hell omfg IS THAT?? It's about an inch long, with an insect-like face and scrabbly thick legs and lacy WINGS and an OPEN WHITE SPOT on its back, like it's missing a piece of armor or something. Very slow to move - it just sat there and waved its legs around while I took pics.

Somebody please tell me what the hell that thing is, and that it's part of the natural order here on Earth, because it sure looks like some kind of funky alien species to me.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Now the Mailman Thinks I'm Suicidal

So, I was down by the creek last weekend, just rambling around (the blackberries are ripe! nom nom nom), and on the walk back I paused on the bridge over the creek to watch the fish in the water below.

I heard a vehicle pull over to the side of the road and a voice, laughing, saying, "Don't jump!". I turned around and it was my mailman in his postal truck, so I laughed and said "Don't worry - I won't!", and he waved and went on down the road.

And I was thinking, hmmm...... he's kind of cute ........... I wonder if he's single .......... oh, but wait...... he thinks I'm suicidal.

Oh well.

Aaahhh, the Glorious Fourth ......

....... when the car breaks down and the plumbing backs up.

Now the Saturn's just messing with my head. I was running errands on Friday, driving around, and I looked down to see that all of my dashboard gauges had flatlined. Gas? Zero. RPMs? Zero. Engine temp? Zero. And even though I was doing at least 30 at the time, according to the dashboard I was going ......... yep ....... zero.

So, I made a mental note to buy some gas, since I was pretty sure I had about half a tank, but I had no way to prove it, since the gauges were not cooperating, and to call the mechanic on Monday to have it looked at.

And then I hopped in the car on Saturday, started it up, and ..... everything was fine. All gauges working. And everything's been fine ever since.

WTF, Saturn?

Oh, and the plumbing thing? TOTALLY NOT MY FAULT. It was the guys DOWNSTAIRS who had sewage backing up into their bathtub, forcing the Roto Rooter guy to come out at 8 p.m. on the Fourth to unclog the main line. Not me!

How was your Fourth?

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Who On Earth Thought That Was A Good Idea?

PBS, that's who. Next week, PBS will begin airing a prime-time cartoon following the "off-the-air lives" of Tom and Ray Magliozzi, those guys from NPR's "Car Talk" program.

Um ...... really? Is it aimed at little kids? At adults? Either scenario does not seem like it could possibly turn out well.

I predict this show's "jump the shark" moment will occur within the first thirty seconds of the first episode.

You know, I do listen to NPR and watch PBS, but in both cases, sometimes something will come on that is just so .... wrongly conceived .... that I think to myself, "this is what happens when you let the nerds run the show." And trust me, I was/am a nerd. So I know how these things can happen. I think they need to hire just one cool guy to poke his head in from time to time to say, "um.... guys? You might want to think that one over."

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Note to Self

Wearing three-inch stilettos to work on a day that is going to involve a lot of inter-office walking is probably not the best idea in the world.

Just sayin'.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Detainees Breach Security Barricade

"Tear Down This Wall!", Fluffy demands.

AP - According to eyewitnesses, the security barricade restricting access to the kitchen was breached at approximately 6:35 p.m. last night. The charge was led by Fluffy, who was followed by Tuffy and The Runt. Number Three was asleep at the time and was not directly involved in the escape.

Despite several frantic attempts by Evil Momma, the insurgents refused to be brought back into custody. After several more border crossings were noted, the barricade (poster board and duct tape) was removed by Teh Human, allowing unrestricted access to the kitchen.

The insurgents reported that there would be no further action, as their demands had been met.

At press time, the only identifying photograph available was that of Tuffy, aka Marty Feldman:

No charges will be filed.