Thursday, May 31, 2007

Triumph over self

I know you're really not supposed to write about work on your blog. I mean, I do understand the derivation of the term "dooced". (Although, really, at this point, isn't the way Heather's life has turned out almost an endorsement for getting your ass fired so you leap into what you really want to do? Maybe not but I might have to look at it that way.)

Anyway, what I'm going to tell you isn't a complaint, it's actually about me, about a failing of my own and it's a failing that my bosses know about already so I feel like that's fair game. If Miss Doxie, who is a bona fide legal professional can write about her ass hanging out during an official meeting then I can write about this.

I've finished my filing.

That's all I wanted to tell you.

Seems like a lot of build up for something so mundane, doesn't it.

Oh, wait, did I tell you when the last time I filed was?

No. OK, well that might be of interest. Evidence from my last 2 weeks of filing suggest that the last time I was fully up to date on the experience was March.

Of 2006.

In my defense, I did (basically) know where things were or have alternative ways of retrieving the information. Also, I know that's no excuse.

I have filed every work day for at least an hour for 2 weeks. I've made new files and I've fixed old ones and I've pitched the outdated stuff and I've answered my own questions. Now the drawers are crammed full and I can hardly fit another piece of paper. However, since I've done my bit (finally) I can ask the guys to go through and use their own discretion to get "the thrill of the the throw" (tm Queen Bee).

It feels good, kind of clean and exciting, but I don't think I want to do it again. So let's hope I can keep the filing to short, regular (weekly?) installments from now on.

Got any dirty secrets about the way you do your job?

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Well, isn't this interesting?

This was eerily accurate and a whole lot of fun to do.

Monday, May 28, 2007

10 In Memoriam

I'm doing my 10 things on Monday this week. Chili started the Memorial Day Weekend with some musings about Memorial Day, what we know about it and what we should be doing.

As an aside I think it's important to note that I'm on the fence about the Iraq withdrawal. I feel like in the capitalist world we live in we need to follow the "You Break It You Bought It" rule. On the other hand by staying there are we simply breaking it worse and worse and worse every day we stand there, and breaking ourselves in the process?

Anyway, that being said, I left a half assed comment on Chili's entry about what we might be able to do to support those who are fighting the fight even if we aren't fully supportive of it. I felt like I should do it whole assed. Hence this entry to bookend the Memorial Day Weekend.

1. Any Soldier is an organization I've donated to before. At least once I got a group of people at my office together to write letters and pitch in for donation items and we sent off a box of things for Any Female Soldier. Be sure that you read the web site carefully since there are a lot of restrictions about what can be sent. I learned in my most recent reading that clothing is almost completely banned because synthetic materials can melt if a soldier is hit and cause worse burns than they might get if they were simply hit with an incendiary device while wearing natural fibers. On the flip side you may be surprised to read all of the things that aren't supplied as part of the nature of outfitting a person for combat. Do you think that they all have kevlar, boots, and tampons? Think again.

2. The USO sends care packages over, along with sending comedians and musicians and other moral support. You can donate money and you can donate time to assemble packages. You may even be able to pass them out to soldiers before they're deployed, but I'm not sure about that last one.

3. A Million Thanks is the one with the commercial of that pretty blonde teenager who organized a letter drive. She's teamed up with car dealerships who are collecting the letters for her drive and then the organization vets the letters, packages them and sends them overseas. Again, be sure to read the web site, especially if you're not a gung ho supporter of the war, you don't want your letter to be rejected. Then look up the collection center nearest you and drop off your letters. I think this is a particularly nice one to do if you have kids or work with kids, or any group really, since you could all spend an hour or 2 writing some letters and then someone can drop them off at the collection site. Unexpected thing learned here was that you shouldn't use glitter when making cards.

4. Letter to Congress. For the war, against the war, ambivalent about the war, wherever you stand I have to think it's not a bad idea to keep in touch with your legislators. We elect them to carry out our desires on a global front and how can they do that if they don't know what we think? For the past few years I've been on the electronic petition and letter bandwagon and my legislators are very good about making sure that my positions are acknowledged. Doesn't mean they agree or are doing anything about it but I'm making my voice a little louder.

5. Go over there to help the people. Here's where you may think I'm crazy but if we're going to talk about all the things we can do then we need to really widen the net. There are a lot of people who have joined organizations or have even made their own organizations and have gone over to the Middle East to help rebuild, to show a different, non-military face to the world. I can't remember the name of the woman or the organization but maybe one of you will. She was a thin blond chick and she developed her own organization to help kids in Iraq. I believe she was the first civilian casualty. I wonder if someone has stepped up into her spot yet.

6. Technically this is under the umbrella of Any Soldier but I think it warrants separation. One of the things being requested are Beanie Babies. They even specify that you shouldn't buy new ones, you should dig the old ones out of the attic and send them over. Because they're soft they are easily packed for travel and the soldiers use them to play good will ambassador with the kids they meet. I like that they're trying. I have a little trouble with the utter disconnect of the perfect vehicle for this ambassadorship being something that we over here got into such a ridiculous tizzy about. All we need to do is send Cabbage Patch Kids and we'll have fully embarrassed ourselves. Still, it's a good thing to do.

7. Make a play/song/painting/sculpture/movie about it. I just watched Eve Ensler's movie version of The Vagina Monologues. I'd sketched out the 10 things for this post and then I turned Eve on (so to speak) and I got to the part about the Bosnian women from the rape camp. Yes, read it again. Rape. Camp. Like a concentration camp with sex games. She gives a statistic about how many women are raped in the US every day. It's enormous. It's petrifying. It's so wrong. And I bet percentage-wise it's much lower than the rapes happening in the Middle East. Eve interviewed people, she listened, she laughed, she compiled and she shared. We could all do that. We're sort of doing it here already. Do some more research, keep telling people things they might not know, or might have temporarily forgotten in the fog of horrifying things that are happening these days. This one isn't specific to the Middle East. Write about New Orleans (I followed up the V Monologues with a viewing of the Christmas/New Orleans episode of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip). Make a movie about the Tsunami. Sculpt an earthquake. Write a short story about children in poverty. Produce a showing of the Vagina Monologues. Just do something.

8. March. I don't know what it's like where you are but here in the NYC there are marches all the time. A lot of them are spontaneous and have to do with reproductive rights as well as foreign policy. There are also marches in Washington that everyone can go to. Again it's a matter of taking a stand, in this case literally.

9. Visit a legislator. If a letter is good how much better would a visit be? You can start even with your city councilperson. Maybe they can give you some insight in what to do to be heard higher up in the bureacracy.

10. Volunteer at a VA hospital, homeless shelter, with the aforementioned organizations. It'd be good for any of us to get face to face with someone who has fought in the service of things we believe in, or that they believe in, or that we all take for granted. Hell, just go to your local nursing home and bring some flowers and have a chat with the people there. You never know what you'll learn and I've spent a decent chunk of time in nursing homes over the years so I feel I can say that almost without fail your visit will brighten someone's day.

Good luck out there. I was saddened to learn today that This Is Not Over has closed down. It closed down two months ago so it turns out I wasn't exactly using it to its fullest advantage but still I was jarred. It was staffed by a number of online writers for whom I have great admiration. Though their sign off says that the shut down does not mean that this is over I can't help feeling a little hopeless. So here's bonus:

11. If you've got some web knowledge and some political knowledge and some writing skills you could go over to TiNO and resurrect the site (with their permission of course) or build your own similar site to help us all do better as we try to become big enough to hold these enormous challenges in our world.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

I don't know, YOU decide!

People are being very kind about this whole weight loss thing. Accomodating with the food choices, encouraging, all the things you hope for in your friends. After last week's entry, though, the questions started.

How do you feel? Do you look different? Do you have more energy? They always say that after the first 10 lbs flowers grow out of your butt. Are there flowers growing out of your butt?

Er, um, no definitive signs as yet folks. I don't really know what to say to all that interest. I don't feel better or worse or much different at all. My clothes fit a little differently. If I don't wear a belt my trusty cords (in 3 different colors) fall down around my hips and I can comfortably pull them down so I fit in with all the hip teens in the neighborhood and my underwear is on display to the whole wide world. But if I wear a belt then it thickens the waist so I can't really see the progress and that feels shitty.

Teddy's Girl gave me a super compliment yesterday. We were walking towards each other from about half a block away and when we met up she said, "You do look different. I couldn't figure out who was walking Emily!" So that was nice.

Thing is, I can't tell if I look any different at all. I'm not good at this. Last time I remember looking at myself and thinking, "Damn, I look just like I want to look." was right after I got back from London and I got some pictures developed from our final projects. I looked freaking awesome, man, all slim and lightly made up and rocking a spaghetti strapped mini dress. That's what spending all day every day doing something you love will do for you I guess.

Anyway, I don't know so you tell me. Here's a picture of me with Alita from Christmas and then a recreated (and, I admit slightly tweaked) version of me from a couple of days ago.

Do I look different?

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Wishes Come True!

You know I don't make the wish list so you'll buy me stuff, right? It serves a dual purpose of placeholder until I decide I deserve/can afford something and as a place to point the family when they ask what I want for Christmas.

Miflohny has always been a woman of extraordinary skill at orchestrating complicated maneuvers with a "green" mindset but today I believe she surpassed herself. She kept reading depressing journal entries (whoops, apparently the words you write do affect other people) and decided she wanted to do something for me. She checked my wishlist and noticed she had a couple of the offerings on her shelf. She's been trying to pare down her space to stuff ratio just like me so she put the ones I wanted aside for me. Then she purged the rest of her shelf and started bringing small batches to the used bookstore and getting store credit. Then do you know what she did? She spent her store credit on things I had on my wish list and she gave them to me.

How nice is that?

I have just updated the list to reflect the bounty so gratefully received. You'll notice that the following books have been deleted:

American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis
Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon (This is part of that Outlander series, so now I have a good reason/excuse to beg, borrow or buy the rest of it too!)
The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman (I love Alice Hoffman. If you haven't read Here on Earth you should go do it right now...right after you go finish watching those Cate Blanchett movies I told you to watch last night.)
Orlando by Virginia Woolf
Eats Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss (My Grammar Wednesday topic submissions are about to get a lot weightier now that I have a reference for the more common stuff!)
The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd
Nickel & Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America (Which I suspect will be super depressing but also help me break out of my money fears a little and that's something I really need to do.)

There's a scene in season 2 or 3 of The Gilmore Girls where Lorelei is trying to get Rory to lighten the load in her backpack for a school day. Rory pulls out all of the books and explains them. There are school books, a novel, short stories (Eudora Welty if I remember correctly), essays and even another novel in case she's not in the mood for the first one. She explains that she can't predict what mood she'll be in so she has to be prepared. This is the same character who always has a book in her purse, she brings the fiction issue of the New Yorker on her big 3 month anniversary date with CuteDean (tm TWoP).

I'm so with her.

So now I've got some variety when I finish the book I'm reading now (the second book of Dorothy Dunnett's House of Niccolo series if you're interested). I'll have plenty to read in case I get snowed in (it pays to be certain, I'm telling you). I'll be able to tailor my book packing for the week I spend next month helping mom.

This has really cheered me up.

Also, I'm sure it didn't hurt that in order to get them to me Miflohny convinced me to go walk in the park with her, the little Seal and the pooch. That waterproof blankety thingamajig you see under the little Seal in the photo at the top is very comfortable. Had I not felt it was important to keep up my end of the conversation I might have dozed off under that tree and stayed all day.

Oh yeah, and the baby is cute too, a very pleasant walking companion.

Thank you!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Crib Sheet

I had some questions about who all the hot people are so I thought I'd give you a crib sheet. If I linked to them all it'd be linktastic and I'd be here until tomorrow and I'm way too lazy for that. So, I'll give you the names and you do the googling and the imdbing, k?

So in order from the top down, which brings the chicks up first.

1. The Tony Award Winning Sara Ramirez. She originated the role of the Lady of the Lake in Spamalot on Broadway but you probably know her as Callie O'Malley the beleagured orthopedic surgeon on Grey's Anatomy.

2. Kristen "Veronica Mars" Bell. Also seen as a latino loving gringo on The Shield and a grifting teen on Deadwood and in some John Waters movie that I can't remember the name of but Veronica Mars and her frequent appearances on the Go Fug Yourself web site (sorry, KB, love you anyway) are where she's come into her fame.

3. SHANE! I mean, KATE! Kate Moennig. Got her first big break playing a mischevious cross dressing private school student on the WB's first summer series, Young Americans. Now she's the slightly butch, highly sexed, superfantastic Shane on The L Word. I know that it's cliched to be a straight girl who wants Shane to take her away from it all but I can't help it, that's just how I roll.

4. Rosario Dawson. What has she been in? Well, she's been in Rent and 25th Hour and Josie and the Pussycats but I only know her, really, because she dated Josh Jackson back in the DC days and I didn't know who to be more jealous of, her or him.

5. Sandra Oh. If you don't know who she is I'm not sure I can help you. Brilliant stage actress, brilliant film actress, seemingly half normal and interesting real live human being. Credits include Diane Lane's lesbian friend in Under the Tuscan Sun; the ass kicking, motorcycle riding, Thomas Hayden Church fucking chick in Sideways; and the season finale stealing Christina Yang on Grey's Anatomy.

6. Elizabeth Reaser. Yeah, I know, you've never seen her. She's on Grey's Anatomy now (I guess I went to a GA place and stayed a while, oops) but I actually saw a lot of her last summer in TNT's Saved. She played Alice Arden the (gag) soulmate of the hot main character. Me and the other 2 people who watched that show really miss it. And we don't understand why TNT ditched it and put another hospital drama in its place. I mean, Treat Williams is nice and all but he's hot guy who starred in Saved. Send Treat back to Brothers & Sisters to bang Sally Field and give me the hot guy back, please.

7. Sara Silverman. Comedienne. She's been in a ton of comedy stuff that I never watched because it didn't seem like it'd be up my alley. Frankly a lot of it isn't but man, she's freaking hilarious sometimes. Go see her movie, Jesus is Magic. She's been on a lot of Comedy Central Roasts, she dates/lives with/bumps uglies with/is married to Jimmy Kimmel. That's all I know. Oh, and if you see JiM, make sure you stick it out to the encore of the stage show, totally my favorite part.

8. Whenever I look at her all I can think is, "Faith", which was her character on Buffy but is not her real name, nor her character name on Tru Calling (oddly enough as the title character her name was Tru) or in Bring It On or any of the other stuff she's done. Her real name is...good Christ, I'm going to have to look it up I! Got it! Eliza Dushku. Eliza. Yes. She's a good New England girl, also she usually doesn't dress up that girly.

9. Cate Blanchett. Again, you don't know Cate Blanchett? OK, she probably wasn't one of the ones you were wondering about but I'll give you a quick partial filmography. Elizabeth, Veronica Guerin, Charlotte Gray, The Gift (on TNT right now!), Lord of the Rings, Bandits, Pushing Tin and a ton of others. Go watch some. Go ahead. I'll wait here.

10. Connie Britton. Yeah, Connie is actually melting the screen off your TV once a week with her ultimate MILFness in Friday Night Lights. First became recognizable, to me at least, on Spin City in the Michael J. Fox days.

OK, on to the boys.

1. This guy's name is John Pyper-Ferguson, I totally had to look it up. Can't tell you what else he's been in, I'm just enjoying him immensely as Rachel Griffith's husband on Brothers & Sisters this season. I've taken a little guff about including him but trust me, go watch him in action and I think you'll see what I mean.

2. Joshua. Carter. Jackson. If you don't know him then clearly you've just showed up at this blog and in my life. He's my TV Boyfriend, I had to wrestle ProfDoc for him but she caved and got married so I won by default. Let's see, Pacey on Dawson's Creek, the bartender in the film version of The Laramie Project, starred in Skulls, got killed really early on in Urban Legend, played Glenn Close's son and the cradle that Patricia Clarkson robbed in a really nice Rose Troche movie the name of which escapes me, Bobby (haven't seen that yet), and a bunch of other things. He's single now, according to a web site that Steph sent me to so perhaps this whole weight loss thing will pay off. If you know Josh Jackson and you want to make him happy, e-mail me his number, k? I'll do the rest.

3. Taylor Kitsch. Er, Taylor Kitsch. He was a model and now he's an actor. He's been in like 3 things and I can only name one of them. All of the minutes of Friday Night Lights that Connie Britton isn't setting on fire are being melted like fresh lava by the TK as Tim "diamond in the rough" Riggins.

4. I don't know why I'm even bothering to type this since you'd have to have been living under a rock not to recognize this loveable recovering addict but I'll do it anyway. Matthew Perry/Chandler Bing on Friends. Also been in a number of other things but few of them are worth mentioning.

5. Anybody else love Firefly? Serenity? Did you stick it out through the last season of Buffy? How about watching all 5 seconds of that FOX show Drive last month? If so then you know this guy otherwise it's highly unlikely you've ever seen him. In order of the questions he was Captain Mal, Captain Mal, the crazy mean preacher dude who poked out Xander's eye and that guy whose wife was kidnapped to make him join the illegal cross country race and eventually pair up with the chick who played Kyle's lover/boss on that one season of Judging Amy.

6. I don't know this dude's real name and frankly there's no point in my looking it up. He plays Sawyer on Lost. He is the reason I kept at the show for as long as I did and may be the reason (besides a ton of peer pressure from the Intarweb) that I add all the DVDs to my queue. I'm sure he has a life beyond Lost but I don't know what it is.

7. James Marsters is an acquired taste. I know this. I also know that I've acquired it and there's no getting rid of it and that's A-OK with me. Yes, he's a theatre actor, yes, he started his own theatre company and produced over 300 shows, yes, he's guested on a number of really awful shows in awful roles but for now he's Spike and that's plenty for me and millions of other fans across the country. (That's from Buffy by the way, I do realize that there are people out there who aren't familiar with the show. I don't understand those people but I do know they exist.)

8. Back in the days when Wings wasn't in syndication (were there ever days when Wings wasn't in syndication?) I was more of a Steven Weber girl but Tim Daly is growing on me. Dude is 50! Looking delicious and just the barest touch of the craggy to snag my interest. Since Wings he's done a number of things, I know, like about a gazillion bad guys in Lifetime movies but he's the dude from Wings who is now smoking hot.

9. My personal favorite Heath Ledger movie is A Knight's Tale...or maybe 10 Things I Hate About You, one of those. I did very much love Brokeback Mountain and his work in it but I hold a soft spot for his early (crap) work.

10. And why not close with Hugh Jackman? He acts, he sings, he dances, he hosts the Tonys 2 years in a row, he rides a motorcycle and slices up bad guys while protecting Anna Paquin from harm, what's not to love? Can someone tell me what his breakout role was? He got super high on the celeb list after X-men but he was almost a household name before that. I just can't remember why. Doesn't matter, he's awesome.


Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Ah, the taste of fake ice cream in the afternoon!

Finally got my Tasti D today. Chopped veggies this morning for a low point lunch, organized lunch breaks with Audio Girl so I could go out for late afternoon snack and went to a different store altogether. Tastes like freedom...and crisco, but so good. My tongue is so unused to ice cream now that it almost froze stiff.

Between that and reading Miss Doxie this morning it's not a bad day. If you aren't reading her, you really should be. She may not post frequently but when she does it's funny. She's having a sale at her store, too. If I needed anything you could get me some jewelry and some fine art and some paper goods and maybe some buttons and magnets. But I don't need anything. The whole focus of this month is on getting rid of stuff actually. So just go read and that will make me happy.

OK, I'm off to sniff the plastic spoon thus extracting the very maximum amount of pleasure out of my 5 point treat. (5 points! That's a quarter of my daily allowance!)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Girls for my Girl

Totally forgot that it's Steph's birthday today, or perhaps tomorrow, but in any case on her birthday there should be a girls, girls, girls entry no matter what. So here it is.

Happy Birthday my friend, here's to this year being a thousand times better than the last (but not as good as the next, of course).

10 Hot "Things"

ProfDoc and I have created a little game. I think it would be well suited to long car rides but we're just using it via e=mail on the long car ride that is our lives.

The format is: X is hotter than Y where X = a celebrity and Y = another celebrity.

You send your X is hotter than Y to the other person and they reply with Z is hotter than Y and so on and so on just like a hair color commercial. Ideally there's a connection between the people in each equation but it can be almost anything: shared project, each having done a project with another actor, shared home country and once I think I had to just go for broke and play the Pitt card because she'd gone so far into the hot zone that there was hardly anywhere else I could go and still get hotter.

Is it silly? Yes. Way more comforting than that one where someone gives you a couple of celebrities and you have to choose one of them or death. I mean, that does not pass the time while you drive through the amber waves of grain, that just shows you that everyone has a price and happy-shiny people don't want to know that.

My 10 for this week is 10 people that have come up as we've played the game over the past 5 days, they are, however, not in any particular order.

P.S. My apologies to those who are looking for hot of the female persuasion, it's just not how the game has rolled thus far. I'll do a chicks edition of hot people soon, promise.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Crushing blow

There are drawbacks to this whole weight loss plan, you know?

Yeah, you do, I know.

You have to plan. I have a love-hate relationship with planning. Mostly I really, truly hate making a firm plan and having it get torpedoed. Makes me angry.

And you wouldn't like me when I'm....


Anyway, today I lost some blubber and it's the start of a new week and it's vaguely summery out so I thought, "Now would be an appropriate time for a food reward." I thought this at, like, 6:30 this morning. I then proceeded to plan my whole day around it because that's what you do when you're on a budget of calories. I walked an extra leg of my commute, I held off on a morning snack, I took my lunch break very late, all so that I could go to the Tasti D for my afternoon snack and have the smallest fake ice cream allowed by law. (With sprinkles, dammit, because FUCK THEM sprinkles have no calories.)

"I'm sorry, we're all out of chocolate."

It is inappropriate at this juncture to joke about being sent to jail, however, I almost killed the guy with a plastic spoon I was so frustrated.

This is also how one becomes "accidentally" drunk. One plans one's day with limited caloric intake anticipating a possible appetizer/drinks outing in the neighborhood. One even thinks about which appetizers and which drinks one might want and factors it into the mathy part of one's plan.

Then the other one comes over and decides she wants to go to the other place (no food, totally different drinks) and one ends up drinking 2 for 1 happy hour Stellas on a basically empty stomach.

Whoops again.

So, I just ate some 100 calorie pack oreo crisps. Cold motherfucking comfort. I don't even like oreos and these are so not even anything resembling oreos but they're chocolate and they're only 2 points and I'm hungry.



In the immortal words of Hugh Grant, "Oopsie Daisy!"

I forgot to write this weekend, I guess. I was busy but it wasn't like I didn't have time to write. I painted a trash can, I accidentally got drunk, I hauled out some junk I've been meaning to deal with for years.

And, hey, I lost 2lbs. I'm at 140. The goal is 138. But I didn't do that just over the weekend.

What did you do this weekend?

Friday, May 18, 2007

Something to think about next time you get married

There's this thing here on the subways and buses where the transit authority posts some poems along with the ads. For my money they don't change over frequently enough but that just means I'm always on the lookout for a new one. The last stanza of this poem is in the new rotation and my first thought was, "why don't we hear this at weddings?" I found the whole thing and read it through and I still wonder. Sure, it's got an unorthodox feel but it's so much better than that "love is patient, love is kind" crap. I mean, yeah, love is patient and love is kind but love is also green and scaly and comes on leathery wings with breath of fire. Seems like marriage is too important to talk about just the prissy, chocolate flavored stuff.

So next time you get married please consider this:

O Tell Me The Truth About Love

Some say love's a little boy,
And some say it's a bird,
Some say it makes the world go around,
Some say that's absurd,
And when I asked the man next-door,
Who looked as if he knew,
His wife got very cross indeed,
And said it wouldn't do.

Does it look like a pair of pyjamas,
Or the ham in a temperance hotel?
Does its odour remind one of llamas,
Or has it a comforting smell?
Is it prickly to touch as a hedge is,
Or soft as eiderdown fluff?
Is it sharp or quite smooth at the edges?
O tell me the truth about love.

Our history books refer to it
In cryptic little notes,
It's quite a common topic on
The Transatlantic boats;
I've found the subject mentioned in
Accounts of suicides,
And even seen it scribbled on
The backs of railway guides.

Does it howl like a hungry Alsatian,
Or boom like a military band?
Could one give a first-rate imitation
On a saw or a Steinway Grand?
Is its singing at parties a riot?
Does it only like Classical stuff?
Will it stop when one wants to be quiet?
O tell me the truth about love.

I looked inside the summer-house;
It wasn't over there;
I tried the Thames at Maidenhead,
And Brighton's bracing air.
I don't know what the blackbird sang,
Or what the tulip said;
But it wasn't in the chicken-run,
Or underneath the bed.

Can it pull extraordinary faces?
Is it usually sick on a swing?
Does it spend all its time at the races,
or fiddling with pieces of string?
Has it views of its own about money?
Does it think Patriotism enough?
Are its stories vulgar but funny?
O tell me the truth about love.

When it comes, will it come without warning
Just as I'm picking my nose?
Will it knock on my door in the morning,
Or tread in the bus on my toes?
Will it come like a change in the weather?
Will its greeting be courteous or rough?
Will it alter my life altogether?
O tell me the truth about love.

WH Auden

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Anybody know?

On Bones is Angela's father played by one of the ZZ Top guys? Anybody know?

Don't bother with imdb, I tried that already.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Shouting Back

I have been saving comments to reply to in a post for months now, it's getting unmanageable but I still don't post the post. Well, I've got about 40 minutes while I'm waiting to meet Kath to see a real, live Broadway play so I'll see what I can get through (in reverse chronological order, natch) in that time. I can't promise any links.

Chrome Plated Girl should teach classes on how to diffuse anger. For last night's post she said, "You're pretty when you're mad." Flattery will get you everywhere, my love.

ProfDoc/JRH wants to know how one can call Emergency Services "wrong". Well, you could dial 199 I suppose. That's not what I did, though. I live in a cluster of buildings and you access them through a common entrance into a courtyard. Apparently some people (not me) call and say that certain action is happening "in front of" the building in question and the police take that to be the street side so they go, see nothing and move on. First, when I call I always (always, isn't that a comforting thing to say about calling the police, "every time I call them" which implies it's more than once in a lifetime) say I'm talking about the courtyard and I often go on to explain exactly how you get to where I'm talking about when the operator goggles a bit. Secondly, it's one precinct and my complex holds a lot of the members of that precinct. If you've worked here more than a week I suspect you've got a clue how the damn thing works and that you'd take a peek in the courtyard on general principles. But no. What. Ever. Bitches.

About the close up of the young man, MKAEP wants to know who he is and Chili wants to know if the 8 year old is still in there. That's the Athlete. He's the Bee's son and he's actually dropped out of all his athletics at the time of this writing but once I've got a name I'm sticking with it. I've known him since he was about 6. I don't know why I feel a freaky link to him but I really do. And hell yes, the 8 year old is still in there. I think that's true of all of us, don't you? I look at the Bean Chili and she's still, just partly, that crab walking 18 month old with the killer grin. I wrote about going out with Crash and Ulserad a couple of months ago and how they see the 14 year old me when we're together. It's all still in there, it just may not be driving the bus. Or worse yet perhaps it is at the wheel. My inner child drives Formula 1.

Speaking of buses, when I wrote of Bus Wisdom Chili said, "CLICK! 'Splain THAT to they guy in the FotoMat!!" And to that I say, "Huh?" 'Splain, please? Or at least sum up?

Wayfarer advocates portion control on the bagels and I heartily agree. Except I also plead laziness. I miss not only the yum of the bagel but being able to walk into a bagel store and have the nice people make me an X bagel with Y cream cheese and then just eating it. For the portion control I'd have to.. well, purchase bagels and control my portions. So, my complaint was not comprehensive. But I may be purchasing some bagels and freezing them in halves now.

I kinda took Chili's comment about Nanny looking dead really badly. She's not freaking dead! Now I've had some time to release the shock and bristle I can just explain. Nanny had a couple of very bad strokes and was back on her feet. Then she fell and broke a hip and during the rehab she started sundowning and things progressed. Now she does know when we're there but she doesn't seem to know who we are and she doesn't speak anymore. She does laugh sometimes and we like to think it's with/at us. While we're doing interesting connections, I was recently talking to the Athlete about a conversation he and I had on the way to take those pictures last year. He was, in a pretty nice way, expressing his discomfort at visiting her in the nursing home. Having done a lot of nursing home visits as a kid and having hated the crap out of them (have I mentioned lately how old my people tend to get?) I felt qualified to talk about it. I did, however, give all the standard answers about how it's a good thing to do even though it does suck and it is unfathomably uncomfortable and how when you get older you get less hung up about it if you have exposure early and often. My favorite part of it, though, was that he didn't say he didn't want to visit her he said he wished we could just bring her home the way we used to.

Gertrude gave a plug for the book Marley & Me. I have read it. ProfDoc lent it to me and I knew what it was going to be like yet I read it anyway. It's a lovely sweet book, but you gotta know that a memoir about a dog isn't going to end at the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm. I got to the last 3 pages on the bus home one night so I just walked to my couch, read the last 3 pages, blubbered like a whale and called a couple of dog friends to see if they would walk their dogs with us. Marley was indeed a fabulous dog, he's no Emily but...

I appreciate the comment from the Breast Cancer people. It went a little like this:
"Breast Cancer education
Common Breast Cancer Myths

The first myth pertaining to this disease is that it only affects women.

Second myth that is associated with this disease is that if one has found a lump during an examination, it is cancer.

Third is that it is solely hereditary

The next myth associated with breast cancer is downright ridiculous. Would you believe, that in this day and age, some individuals still think that breast cancer is contagious?

Conversely, some individuals foolishly believe that breast size determines whether or not one gets cancer.

Finally, another myth that is associated with this disease is that it only affects older people. This is not so. Although the chance of getting breast cancer increases with age, women as young as 18 have been diagnosed with the disease.

You can find a number of helpful informative articles on Breast Cancer education at

Breast Cancer education"

If that comment helps even one person then it's totally worth it. But (and I haven't gone back to verify this) I bet it was made on a post that was about someone dying of lung cancer and if the person (who I know is probably a spambot and not a person) had actually read the blog they'd know that I'm pretty well informed on the breast cancer front and not badly informed on the lung cancer front and I'm not afraid to say so. If you think I don't know that age isn't a factor in who gets cancer then you simply haven't read the archives. The only surprise about these myths is that (no offense) anyone else still believes them.

ProfDoc/JRH provides possibly the winning "Who's Your Sign" from my stupid encounter with the dogs and the gods, "No, I do that at home in the shower." It's hilarious and it gives me creepy flashbacks to a Dawson Leery moment. I think I just peed a little.

MKAEP, however, gives probably the most accurate "Going Brooklyn on their ass" response, "No you dumbshit, I'm in the middle of a colonoscopy and a manicure." She then follows up with the nastiest and most off-putting but but side splitting response, "Nope. Just finished a threesome."

Clemo said this after VA Tech, "And with every new act of inhumanity, we come together for fifteen minutes and SWEAR it will never happen again. And we mourn the lost, we grieve with the ones that remain to carry the scars, and we look up to the sky and wonder....where will the next one come from?

I send out a general appeal; for every horrifying story, I want a story of positive human endeavor. And I DON'T think it's too much to ask."

I don't think I ever responded with a positive human endeavor story. What's worse, I can't think of one right now. I'll work on it but I urge everyone else to take up the challenge as well.

Clemo also reminded me of a huge scheduling snafu. "Thank you for your invitation to your 20th reunion....but not only is that my birthday, but the last Potter book comes out that day, so I'll be busy, busy, busy." My HP book is pre-ordered in Brooklyn and I'm going to be in NH! AAAARGH!

Becky and all her new high falutin' book larnin' tells me that the cat thing is most certainly not heat rash and here's why, "You knew I couldn't resist this one.

So... heat rash comes from inflamed, blocked sweat glands... but cats don't sweat. It might still be the heat or laundry chemicals, but I'd consider eczema or psoriasis in your differential diagnosis.

My childhood dog had a wicked and torturous case of eczema that, unfortunately, we were never really able to predict or control. Poor Lena."

I've got an oatmeal shampoo from Kristie to try and I'll keep you posted on the success right. Yup, you're paying for the whole seat but I'm only letting you use the edge!

Have I told the Crane story yet? If I haven't I will. But someone tell me if I need to, willya? I'm still a little scattered. Not really in research mode.

OK, 5 minutes to proofread and tag and then I'm off to get pretty and eat something and meet a pretty lady to see a pretty play.

Or something.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Lorelei Gilmore and me (no spoilers)

She is 95% caffeine.

I am 95% anger.

Before I tell you this story please let me remind you that MKAEP doesn't live in New York City and she was ear witness to a murder. At least I'm not there...yet.

I went out for dinner with Peter Weekly and then walked him through my apartment (past the annoying talking boys) and up to my apartment to grab the dog. Then I walk him to meet his lovely bride in what I consider to be a sketchy part of the neighborhood. No trouble, pleasant walk back with the dog.

Until I get back to the courtyard.

Literally just as I get into the place there's a verbal argument starting amongst the annoying talking boys. As I stand there it escalates to a fist fight. And then one of the 10 unbelievable idiots sitting on the bench gets up, whacks his 40 on the ground (repeatedly, it's really not as easy as they make it look in the movies) until he's created a weapon. At which point I go to the "security" pavilion to see if they've called 911. They have. More importantly, though, they're fielding a call about a stopped up sink.


Good luck with that.

Someone else makes himself a weapon and we're off to the races. A number of the ass monkeys disperse into my building. The initiator stands in the center of the courtyard brandishing his beer bottle and screeching about a scratch on his arm while one lone brave kid tries to convince him to get the hell out.

I can finally go in to the building. The lobby is the set of CSI. Bloody beer bottle and about 15 feet square of blood spatter.


I call the police myself and dictate the freaking Lifetime Original Movie of the event.

Scratched, angry young man leaves with his ever-loyal friend.

Then the police arrive.

I went down, I chatted for a long time with a police officer who told me, in rotation, that I was calling in the incidents wrong and that our security sucks.

Our security sucks? The people who throw the gates wide when it's raining because no crime happens in the rain? Really? Seriously?

Wow, thanks.

So now I probably have blood on the bottoms of my shoes (took 'em off inside the front door, I promise) and I've put in 2 calls to the campus manager and I am all of the pissed off from all of my 10 things this morning and more.

Stupid kids.

Oh and my mom found her phone charger. It was in the bathroom where she last charged the phone.

Fancy that.

Hey, will someone tell 2007 that he can kiss my ass. I'd do it but I don't have time what with all the righteous anger and Yankee repression and you know, remembering to put on clean underwear.

So, what did you do tonight?

Things that are Stupid

1. People who don't let people get off the train or bus first. I didn't take physics either but I can understand that until an equal amount of mass comes off that car then your big mass isn't going to fit on the car.

2. People who think that Iraq had something to do with 9/11. Um no. Conspiracy, probably, but on our end. Avenging a father, misdirecting attention from shitty domestic policy or even just a desire to play with big toys that go boom but not because the country in question took action against us.

3. The fact that I may have to send a letter by Pony Express (the actual Pony Express not the person) to tell my mother that I will pay for her to get a new phone charger. I'll get 2 even, it just makes sense to have one for home and one for travel.

4. People who see me restraining my dog and still keep forging ahead toward me with their own dog blissfully unleashed.

5. People who don't understand me. Different I am. A real puzzle surely not. Don't lie to me, don't yell at me and on the rare occasion when I ask for a big favor do what you can with a minimum of chatter. Other people have figured this out, it can't be that hard.

6. The people who took 2 networks (UPN & WB) and decided that the road to success was to keep all the reality shows and the lowest common denominator shows (One Tree Hill, because I watch you I can criticize) while ditching all the shows that have been nurtured to success over time (Everwood, Gilmore Girls, Veronica Mars). You let the Palladinos go and now you're trying to tweak Veronica Mars into oblivion? I would direct your attention just briefly to say, Law & Order (multiple moves of time and day, low ratings over a few seasons and yet now at every hour of the day someone somewhere is watching some form of it) or to Buffy (survived and thrived despite changes in creator's attention and a move of networks). Try to think long term, will ya?

7. Spending money on tapes and postage to send episodes of shows to people who can't be home to get them. But I do it anyway and I like it.

8. People who fail to jump at the chance to book my show in their school, library, theater or other venue. (heh)

9. High priced airline tickets for a flight that will be late departing, overcrowded and will make you sick with recirculated air.

10. Weight Watchers. Yes, it works but it's stupid and damnit I hate doing it. "It's not a 'die-t' it's a 'live-it'". No, in point of fact it's a 'suck-it' you cheerleading scumbag.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Putting a pin in it

I haven't spoken to my mom today.

I have tried. She's visiting a friend in Maine and when I spoke to her last night she told me that there was "a piece missing" from her phone charger. Er, how is that possible? Anyway, her phone keeps going straight to voice mail and her voice mail is full. mom today.

And what could I say? Happy Mother's Day? Not a lot of happy days for mom lately. She's making good progress, though. It's a slow road about which I'll talk later.

I'm wishing her a happy mother's day wherever she may be. I just really hope it's not in a ditch trying to call for roadside assistance on her uncharged phone.

Accentuate the Positive

Here's a little reversal on Mother's Day. I've been frustrated with some parenting blogs I read so I thought I'd issue a challenge.

Just this once, doesn't have to be long, I challenge all of you with kids to write something that is solely positive about your children. Nothing that's all, "I love them but..." or "It's so cute when they do X even though..." and especially not "If they don't stop X!!!!" Just positive. Even if this week is a week where you want to sell them to the Roma.

If you blog please leave a link in comments, if you don't have a blog please feel free to leave your piece in comments.

Thank you.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

In this face

It's maybe not the best picture of him ever taken and I do see that. I see, with my eyes, what he really looks like and how tall he is and the slice of those cheekones. My heart, though, my heart sees through all that to the rounder 8 year old who used to hang out "casually" waiting to give me a hug goodbye before I left him again.

Sometimes I wish I couldn't see anything else.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Bus Wisdom

I ended up on the cross Brooklyn bus this afternoon in the post-school hour today and heard the following exchange between 2 delightful young gentlemen.

A: He's not gay he just acts...

B: If you take pictures of your penis...

A: He do...

B: If you take pictures of your penis...

A: Yeah bu...

B: If you take pictures of your penis...

A: You're gay.

B: Yeeeeeeaaaaaaah.

It's not been my experience but hey, you learn something new every day.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Years ago I rented a room in a house that Pony Express owned. The house had settled in such a way that the stairs were separating from the wall which, we were told, was not ideal safety-wise. Fancy that. So Pony's ex found someone to fix it. I was perplexed. It would take more than a day to complete and the bathrooms and kitchen were at the top of the stairs while the front door was at the bottom. Would we have to bunker down for 3 days? Or up since the facilities were on the second floor? Turns out they fix the stairs one or two at a time so that, while you may have to stay on one side for an hour or so you can get up and down in a pinch and you can get out in case of a fire in the still of the night.

Over the past 4 months or so I feel as though that's the approach that Mr. Chili has taken with the refurbishing of my computer. He never keeps it more than a day or two and he tries the least invasive surgery first, avoiding major scares and expenses. Just when I thought he'd done everything he could do to make it whole he told me, "Your keyboard is acting funny. Next time you come back give me a little warning I'll replace that keyboard." I didn't even know you could do that on a laptop. He's a marvel that one and I am hugely grateful.

As of his last miracle I am again able to download pictures from my camera. Despite my humongous memory card (thank god my mother doesn't call me on my shit when I wheedle things from her) I haven't filled the card up. Without the ability for instant posting and therefore gratification I lost interest in taking pictures. Which just goes to show you that as far as I'm concerned you're roughing it if the cable goes out. Hell, I get a little hinky when I go somewhere with cable that doesn't have the "guide" button so I can watch my stories and still know what I'm missing.

I have a bunch of pics now anyway so I thought I'd share them. Be warned, they're in no particular order. (Honestly I cannot ever remember the best way to caption in blogger so I'm putting descriptions below and hoping that looks ok.)

In the cafe before our 2nd annual trip to Santaland. We are full of Christmas cheer. Now almost five months later she has fewer teeth.

This is Hula, one of Kath and Alex's (almost) matching cats. Hula is a lover with a backbone. He'll smack the dog back if he deserves it but really all he wants is to snuggle with his people. Can you believe he's almost 19 years old?

This is the dynamic duo after only an evening together during Bobby's trial run visit in March.

Kath demonstrating her magical powers. She can attract every animal in the house with only a few ingredients from her ordinary kitchen. Note that Edwin (the other 19 year old cat) is actually trying to climb up the cabinets to get to the treats first. I'm not sure but it might have been "the power of cheese."

Before Miflohny and the Media Guy had a kid they had a baby shower. I have no idea what present is being opened in this picture but we watched them open every one and there was a quiz. OK, they called it a game but it had quiz-like properties. And I lost. So I'm bitter. Oh wait, I won. I got maple sugar candy. It was yummy! OK, there were games and they were brilliantly designed and infinitely fair and balanced. Also I remember bagels. Possibly the last delicious, mouthwatering bagels before the great WW experiment. Sigh. Bagels.

On Christmas day we open presents then go to visit Queen Bee's mom, Nanny. From 2005's shoot I got a number of lovely photos but, it turns out, not one of the Athlete's face. He's a teenager and he's crafty. This year one of the VA girls set up this lovely shot and I clicked away like a 2 year old with a disposable at a wedding. I don't care what this picture tells you, either, Blondie Girl is still only 3 years old.

Our annual lunch and photo op with Auntie Blanche. She looks pretty good at 96 doesn't she?

The Anna girl, she looks all innocent and sweet at first but she will cut you. And she won't be sorry.

The Bee Fam on Christmas day. Unbelievably wholesome and good looking aren't they?

This is a posterity picture. Bobby's people went to all that trouble to bring his bed over here while he stayed the week and this photo marks the only time he slept on it. He lasted less than 5 minutes. It's possible that he snuck out and snuggled up on it while I was asleep but it's more probable that he joined Em on the couch.

Here is the evidence that he waits for you in the bathroom. How cute is that? You know, until he gooses you with his cold nose.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Just one more

1 pound

2 pounds

3 pounds

4 pounds

5 pounds

6 pounds

7 pounds

8 pounds

9 pounds

10. As of yesterday my total weight loss is 10 lbs.

Ah, screw it

Here's a tangentially related to The Year of Magical Thinking list just to get one out of my system.

10 Things You Should Know in the Event of My Death

1. If I end up on life support go ahead and keep me there for 6 months or so to exhaust all your options.

2. Then, pull the plug. Seriously. If you have to find this entry cached on the internet somewhere and use it as proof consider this your permission.

3. Donate my organs. For people, for research, for art, just do something with them, I won't be using them anymore. Perhaps my ACL will go to the Olympics.

4. Whatever you've got left just burn it. (This one may change if someone develops a more environmentally sound means of disposal before my demise.)

5. You could include a good book, though. Complete works of Shakespeare, Lymond Chronicles, Year of Magical Thinking, something that will hold up well under repeated reading.

6. Pony Express, Queen Bee and ChemE are in charge. But MKAEP already knows she's taking care of the ... adult literature and devices.

7. Once you've paid off the expenses and sold the apartment give the money to the kids. Alita, the Bee kids, MusicBaby, Ronan, the Chili Chill'n, the Brown Eyed Boy and whoever else comes along before, you know, I pedally strike the tin receptacle.

8. If I can die at home I'd prefer it but if I can't then make it as painless and as quick as possible. No drowning or crucifixion, you hear?

9. Either bury the ashes (or whatever) near my grandparents in Durham, NH or here in Brooklyn but please keep me all together and I would like a marker of some sort. (I'm doing some research on this stuff this weekend so I may be able to leave more specific instructions soon.)

10. If you have a party/memorial/funeral please sing.

And, just because you asked, it's my opinion that it's really important to let people know this stuff. I don't care if you don't like to think about it or if you think it's too soon or even really if you're superstitious about this kind of advance planning, it's just cruel not to tell the people close to you what you want. They shouldn't have to be making those kinds of guesses when they're already so sad. Plus, on a more practical note, they'll be less sad to see you go if you make it even harder on them.

10 End of Hockey Season Things

1. I saw game 6 of the Rangers-Sabres series on Sunday.

2. Coincidentally it was the final game of the season for the Blue Shirts.

3. Didn't the Sabres colors used to be blue and white? Why do they have black and white and a little bit of yellow/gold uniforms now?

4. It was the first hockey game I've ever been to with my cousin, JCon. Should've done that sooner. My cousins are good company, folks.

5. During shoot around (watch my lingo!) the Rangers came to a stand still, which is a pretty odd thing to do during your limited warm up time before a crucial game. They were half circled at the line and it turned out they were waiting for their awesome goalie, Henrik Lundqvist to be ready for the drill. Was he stretching? No. Was he texturizing the ice in the key? No siree. Was he bent at the waist, elbows on knees, communing with the ice between his skates? Yeeeeees. I love me some crazy, crazy on ice.

6. In the 3rd period the Rangers are down 2 and the action goes to their goal. Lundqvist cuts the angle, which brings him way out of the crease. All of a sudden he's completely cut off from the net by 4 or 5 players. The Sabres have the puck. Most of the Rangers' line is inexplicably grouped around Henrik and therefore not near the puck or the net. Mara, who is about 11 gangly feet tall, throws himself in net and just flails at top speed like he's thinking that if he whirls like a fan the puck will have to hit a blade instead of getting through. Henrik heaves up like that stone dude from the Fantastic Four and starts throwing elbows indiscriminately while he backs into the net. Backs into the net. Without even looking. Stone cold fox that man. Sweden makes fish and goalies.

7. The Sabres did not manage to score during that fiasco.

8. It's possible that I had a miniature heart attack (far less cute than a miniature dachsund) during the same fiasco.

9. There were 2 guys sitting next to me who for some reason had spent over $500 to see a hockey game about which they knew nothing and for which they had no interest. Not sure why. When the action moved to the other end after #6 the guy at my elbow asked, "Are you going to be OK?" with a judgy sort of chuckle. Asshole. I do not know sir, the game isn't over yet. (Though some would say it might as well have been.)

10. It's the first time I've ever waved a rally towel at an event. I was, somehow, under the country bumpkin impression that fans brought these towels to the games. Of course not! What did I just fall off the turnip truck or something? It's a marketing opportunity, they pass them out on your way into the stadium. So, now I've got an unsuccessful rally towel taking up space in my apartment. Kind of love that.

10 Neighborhoodie Sorts of Things

1. Obviously since I poached the title from them I must link them.

2. Look what Kath saw. Kids, riding motorcycles is super fun and makes you feel cool and risky but the truth of the matter is that you are actually at higher physical risk so you have to be more careful than if you were driving a car. Sucks the fun out of it, I know, but better than having them suck your brains off the pavement.

3. Here's a blog about my 'hood. Easy to see why I like it here.

4. I cannot praise our newish pet food emporium, Who's Your Doggy, enough. No web site but they're at the corner of Willougby and Adelphi and the phone number is (718) 522 5244. If you need something Tracy will help you, seriously. Oh and they just opened up a grooming establishment in the back, too. And by "they" I mean "her". She's a young, single, female business owner, which just adds cool points in my opinion.

5. A group of 7ish year olds were playing in the courtyard tonight and happened to re-enact exactly what 9 out of 10 child sociology studies have scientifically proved. 3 out of the 4 participants had razor scooters at the ready. The 4th, a girl, was holding a piece of paper and going over the "rules" of the "game". "Whooo...whoever gets twooooo treasures.." and then I couldn't hear any more because the boy standing directly opposite her just opened his mouth and screamed in frustration L'Enfant Sauvage style.

6. There's a budding romance between 2 14ish year olds in the building. They are trysting in the stairwell. Which is sort of annoying but since I've similarly annoyed people in much more graphic ways in stairwells when I was way past the age of old enough to know better I feel like it's simple payback. However, they're slowly moving up the stairwell, presumably as they get more comfortable having fewer people interrupting them. Someone should tell their mothers but it's not going to be me, I guess.

7. I am not a small dog person but man, I saw the cutest dog yesterday on my way home. A long haired, dappled miniature dachsund. Why would you make a doxie in mini form. I've got cats bigger than that puppy. I could lose my pants pocket! Cute, though, damn cute.

8. The Year of Magical Thinking is probably not good as subway reading. Although they do all move away from you on the Group W bench if you read and cry and read and cry. All of today's 10 lists are an effort to keep me from doing the Magical Thinking 10 list which is going to be just fucking depressing.

9. This weekend I went out to meet Teddy's Girl and as I hit the sidewalk came across the biggest display of ghetto outside of a B movie. Across the street was an oversized SUV with 2 doors open and the back window propped up and music blasting out from every orifice. From a building nearby a woman leaned out her 5th story window screaming, "Turn that car off right NOW!!!!!!!!" Martin Scorsese scripted my neighborhood.

10. I think I broke my my neighborhood. She seems better appetite-wise and energy-wise but she's very tentative getting up or down off of any furniture. Tonight she yelped in pain just leaning down to pick a treat off the floor. I'm not even sure what muscle that strains. It seems that, though she is made of steel, she is weakening in body but not in spirit. I have to pay attention to doing what's good for her and not just what she wants to do to avoid overtaxing the old girl. Oops. She's my first dog, you know, I'm still learning.

The Next 10 Things the Delectable People of Netflix are Sending Me

1. Focus

2. Panic

3. Elaine Stritch: At Liberty (Somehow it seems like the universe is trying to tell me something - focus...oh all right go ahead, are at liberty...)

4. Eddie Izzard: Unrepeatable (I usually set up my queue so that it's one movie, one TV show disc, one movie, etc. I'm in a stand up/variety phase instead. Speaking of which, you should totally check out Sara Silverman: Jesus is Magic even if it's only for her rendition of Amazing Grace.)

5. Charlotte Grey (Which I totally mixed up with Veronica Guerin. So surprised to find out that the latter was a period piece but the period was the 80s.)

6. Scream 2

7. The Man Who Cried (Sometimes I pick these just from recommendations and I have no idea what they're about. Or sometimes it's a "watch everything in the cannon of X actor or director. This seems to be a Cate Blanchett section.)

8. Scream 3 (After I finished adding in the stand up discs that intrigued me I decided to try to get some old sequel things out of the way. The only reason I didn't stop the Scream thing after one is that someone is in #2 and if you've seen 2 out of 3 and you're a Capricorn you have to stick the landing.)

9. Saving Grace

10. The Vagina Monologues: Eve Ensler (I've seen this a few times in the theatre but I've never seen the creator work her magic so I thought I ought to go to the source...which is an interesting phrase to use when you're talking coochie.)

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Sing out, Louise!

In case it hasn't been clear, mom's Old Man Friend, Jake, died a week ago yesterday. Within a 48 hour period mom's current "companion" of over 20 years died and her ex got married. If you're a vibey, prayery sort of a person feel free to vibe my mom with something good 'cause holy jeebus she's having a shitty week.

There's a lot more to it but we're not going into it tonight. Tonight I tell you the story mom told me yesterday.

She was at Jake's house on the day she describes as being the first night she slept alone there even though she'd spent a couple of nights alone there since he'd been in the hospital. She stepped out the door to throw some garbage away or something and she noticed a woman she'd never seen before walking her dog along the rural byway. Mom blurted out, "Jake's dead." Just thinking about her standing there with her sad little bag of garbage looking for someone to tell makes me so sad. Poor mommy.

She'd never even seen this woman before, there's no reason to believe that this woman would know who in blue hell Jake was but mom just let her know. Which is a little weird but would be a ton weirder if it weren't my mom.

Turns out that this woman was a professor at a local college and used to teach a course on death and dying. Talk about an ask and ye shall receive situation. Don't even have to ask, just go about your business and someone will send help. She spent a little time with mom and recommended a grief group and told her about a tool to use. She suggested mom write a letter to Jake to put in his casket.

Fucking brilliant.

I don't know that I'd have a lot to say to Jake but I sure wish someone had told me that before Mrs. X had died. And my grandmothers. And my grandfather. And my cat.

I don't know if mom finally finished her letter but I think she did. Now the funeral is over and the calling hours and the illness and the hospital stay.

In other words now the real hard part begins.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Look! Something shiny!

I was actually going to write something last night but then the red rage clamped down again and it wasn't a good idea for me to write in a public forum. So all I can do for you is distract you with something pretty.

Go look, over there! My friend Julie has been working on this site for a couple of years now, I'm sure it's an important component to building her business and I've been employing sleeve tugging and nagging under the guise of encouragement the whole time. I'm so pleased and proud and excited of and for her that I can hardly speak.

Her son and I are especially fond of the picture at the top of the healing page. He and I have a lot in common.

Buy a CD, book a healing session, sign the mailing list, you won't regret it.