Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Exercise, Vegas, CDs and Spiders

Okay, I'll admit right up front that I have this horrendous project that I could be working on, but since it's pissing me off, I'm dilly-dallying and decided to babble at you kind folks for a while.

Last night I did something new and unusual. I exercised. *gasp* I heard that collective gasp of disbelief, but yes, I did. Really. I found somebody who wants to exercise but needs the incentive of another person (just like me), so she came over after work (I'm telling you, it's really convenient living ultra-close to work), and we walked. We walked my usual 7-mile walk and dang, my knees were killing me this morning. And we're supposed to go again tonight! Next week we have definite plans for Tuesday and tentative plans for Friday night. Tomorrow is bar night, so there will be no walking except to and from the bar.

I also got this TwistBoard thing which is supposed to help slim down thighs, hips and buttocks (I think). I'll keep you posted on how well that works. At any rate, it was only 8 bucks, so if it's a bust, at least it didn't cost me a shitload of money. And if it works, it'll be the best $8 I've ever spent.

I'm very close to being caught up on my sleep after my Vegas weekend. I went to bed at 7:00 on Monday and 8:00 last night. Tonight I'm aiming to stay up until 9:00 p.m. Can you imagine such decadence???

While in Vegas I got two CDs from a race regular. It's his own music and I've listened to it for the past two days, and either I'm no connoisseur of music or I just appreciate anybody's musical effort (but I don’t think that's it since I've already discussed my hatred for the musical "talents" of Sheryl Crow and Dave Matthews), but I like both CDs. I guess I should tell Erich, eh? Instead of you?

Did I tell you all that the highlight of the weekend in Vegas was that my brother drove down from the Bay Area? I know you're all shocked that it wasn't the race, but as good as that was, it was the opportunity to see my brother that was the high point. And of course, having my brother meet my friends and seeing one of my beloved races. He enjoyed it and he liked the chance to meet my friends, too.

Monday morning I'm more asleep than awake while getting ready for work, but I had a surprise visitor who got the blood pumping a bit. I was standing in front of my bathroom putting on my make-up when I felt something on my neck/shoulder. Thankfully I was wearing my glasses that day (my eyes were too damn tired even to think about putting the contacts in), so all I had to do was look up and see the ugliest bloody spider ever crawling across my skin, which about freaked my ass right out. I did a version of the pee-pee dance known as knocking-the-ugliest-damn-spider-ever-off-the-shoulder dance and then when it landed on the floor I crushed it. I was so damn happy that I had put my shoes on already! I get the shivers right down the spine just thinking about it. *shudder* I have an agreement with the spiders in my house. If they stay up high where I can't reach them then they can live. If they come down so that I can reach them, or more specifically, if they land directly on me, all bets are off and their little spidery lives are over!!!

Okay, I guess that's enough of a break for now. Back to the project which is making me pissy….

Monday, September 27, 2004

A hodgepodge of everything! Politics Test

You are a Social Liberal (60% permissive)

and an... Economic Liberal (5% permissive).

You are best described as a: Socialist. You exhibit a very well-developed sense of Right and Wrong and believe in economic fairness.

I picked up the above test from The West Virginia Surf Report (go read him, he's very funny) and I have to say that I thought it was pretty accurate. I've called myself a socialist since college, so it's good to know that I haven't been lying. After you've taken the test they have a collage of well-known faces and you are shown where you sit. I was damn near right on top of Mikhal Gorbachev, but not too far from Hillary Clinton – in my book, that's damn good company. Deal with it, all my right-wing friends!!! ;-) And family, not that any of them know about this and I like it that way!

Why can't the people who work here clean up after themselves? Do they really think their wives/mothers follow up behind them and wipe up any mess left behind? It drives me insane. Every morning somebody manages to splash water all over the counter in the coffee room. Now bear in mind that the coffee gets made at 5:30 and I’m usually in there shortly after 6:00 (for my water and/or herbal tea) and every single solitary freaking morning the counter is splashed all the way to the microwave (a good 2-3 feet). I want to catch that fucker in the act. And then make very obvious movements to clean up after him.

Can someone please explain to me the mindset of a person who can pass within inches of you every fucking day and look past you as if you do not exist? When I first started working here, the only people who ever acknowledged my presence in the hallway were "people of color," i.e., the East Indians, African-Americans, etc. Why are white people (yes, I'm white) so uptight? Is it a sign of weakness to say Hello to a fellow human being? I just don't get it.

I am beyond tired today. Four straight nights of four hours or less sleep is not a recipe for success for li'l ol' me. I know this will shock all Detroiters/Minneapolisites(?)/Memphisians(?) out there, but my NorthWorst flight was late getting into Vegas Thursday night. My flight was, of course, waiting for some other flight to arrive and it was horribly late and eventually scheduled to arrive at 7:27 p.m. Our flight was scheduled to leave at 7:30 p.m. Well, at 7:27 the bloody plane hadn't even landed yet and then when it did, it took a year and a half to get to the gate and then the fun really started. The freaking jetway to gate D11 (or whatever it was) decided it was not going to function (although I had seen it function not even 90 minutes earlier). Fifteen minutes after it got to the gate, it had to move to the next gate over, so we all troop over there and wait and wait and wait. Can you imagine if they still had food service and we had to wait for them to load the shitty hot "food" on to the plane??? Needless to say I did not get to Vegas at 8:50 p.m. PDT as originally scheduled (please note that's damn near midnight my time and I get up at 5:00 a.m.). We finally land at 10:30 or something like that and then I have to wait for the hotel shuttle and then the loading process is not the streamlined process you'd think it would be for a place like Vegas. I did have a nice chat with a young woman from Columbus who showed me pictures of her son (very cute) while I tried to explain Catholicism to her.

Our shuttle driver made the point to yell at the entire bus NOT to cross against the red light in Vegas as it's pretty much asking for death. Very obviously it was one of his pet peeves, and I can't say I blame him at all. It makes driving in Vegas its own unique experience.

So, I get to the hotel finally around 2:30 a.m. and wake Elaine up to let me into the room. We are both bloody tired and have to have a giggle fit first. If you knew both of us, you'd be thinking, "Elaine? Kathleen? Giggle fit?" Yup, when I get super tired I get giddy and punch-drunk. It's really very mature.

Friday was a fabulous day (if a tad hot, officially 96F, but Row said his thermometer said 120F in the sun) at the racetrack. I don't think I'd told you all (all three or four of you) often enough how much I love days spent at the racetrack! "I love the smell of methanol in the morning." It is just such a thrill for me to be there. I know you're all thinking, Dear God, wasn't she just at a freaking race?" Nope, it'd been a good 6 weeks. And unfortunately, Vegas was the last race of the season for me. *sigh* So sad. Elaine and I looked at each other at one point this weekend and said, "Mexico City." We both laughed, because we knew it was completely not feasible, but knowing that both of us were somewhat serious. The schedule for next season (everybody does know we're talking about my beloved Champ Car World Series presented by Bridgestone and Powered by Ford, right?) is due out in 2-3 weeks and it can't come quickly enough for me as I need to start planning. Okay, I don't really, as I don't need to worry about buying vacation time until April, but I like to know these things. Gotta get hotel rooms (the closest hotels sell out quickly at certain venues), start harassing race event people to order the tickets, etc. We're all waiting anxiously for the schedule and all the important TV package. Everybody keep your fingers crossed that we get a good TV package. It can make all the difference in the world to the continuing existence of Champ Car. And trust me, you don't want to know me if there's no Champ Car. If you think I'm vitriolic now about the existence of the IRL and TFG, it'd be nothing if Champ Car doesn't make it. I really think it will though. Getting this first season under our belt with the new ownership team has gone pretty well (especially when you think about all the people who were predicting our demise back in January).

One of the best things about my racing life is all of the people I've gotten to meet over the years. Champ Car fans are the BEST fans in the world, if I do say so myself. We are passionate about our sport and our drivers and express our gratitude outright to the people who deserve it. This past weekend in Vegas, I saw people from other races that I've attended. From the boys at YFDS to the Handsome Couple from Road America to the same two Canadian girls Elaine and I see at damn near every race we attend, these are loyal fans who follow the sport religiously, hell, you could say, fanatically, and truly care about the series. I talked to complete strangers who are just as fanatical as I am and that's a good thing. At Road America, Elaine had suggested that I wear one orange and one black Chuck Taylor at Vegas and I said I would if she wore the other two. She tried to get out of it by saying her foot was smaller, but I wasn't falling for that, especially since we have the same sized feet. So, Saturday at the race we did it. And I got a compliment from a woman in the restroom wearing a Road America t-shirt. I thanked her and then told Elaine, "I just got complimented on my shoes." The woman then looked at Elaine's and looked at me and said, "I like hers, too." LOLOL! I ended up talking to her and her husband and I had the same conversation with them that I had all weekend with every other Champ Car, the very likely possibility of no Road America next year and the other very likely possibility that Patrick Carpentier will be going to the Icky Racing League. Both pieces of news made us all very sad.

Oh yeah, I started that paragraph talking about the great people in racing. Way back in the early days of the burgeoning Internet growth, was in its infancy and in an effort to get people to come to their website they had a number of chatrooms: Auto Racing, Hockey, Baseball, Football, Basketball – I think that was all of them. You didn't even need to register (I told you it was early days) and could post just about anything at all, let me tell you some complete assholes did, too. Anyway, it was May 1995 and I remember the first day I went into the chat, and saw people talking about racing. This was a miracle to me. There were other racing fans in the world!!!! I didn't post that first day, just read a few posts and then got out. A couple of days later I went back in and somebody said something that made me want to comment (no clue what it was now – how was I supposed to know it would be one of the most momentous days in my life?) and so I had to come up with a chat name, quickly, and decided on "Kat," my high school and family nickname.

The people I remember from that day were emmo2 (RIP, my dear friend), Paula (one of the best friends a person could have in this world), Earnhardt Fan, IndyFan, Toronto and a few others. It quickly became addictive and it was a nice mix of NASCAR, F1 and IndyCars (as my Champ Cars were known in those days). We open-wheelers explained Indy 500 qualifying to the stock car types while Paula took on the task of explaining NASCAR to us. Paula even started the chat pool that year by having an Indy 500 pool. I can't remember these 9.5 years later who won that pool, but it was the start of a great lot of fun. All pools in the chat room were for bragging rights only. I still brag to this day about being the recordholder for getting the lowest score ever in LT's F1 pool (he's a computer guy so he had an extremely complicated scoring system, which I never ever understood, and the lower the score, the better you did). I met my first chatter at the Detroit race that year, Speed Racer and he even got me a job (unpaid) spotting for the TV crew. That meant I had all access to all areas of the track and I got to stand at corner 3 and watch the cars go by. If a car seemed like it was too close or about to pass another car, I was supposed to call it in so that the TV crew would know what to watch. Unfortunately (for them) they could never get my headset to work properly, so basically I got to watch the race inches from those magnificent million dollar machines as they screamed past my position. It was just about the coolest fucking thing in the world.

Then came Toronto and the very first meeting of a group of chatters. My dear friend Jody was too much of a wuss to meet us so she missed out on a lot of fun for a couple of years. (Love ya, girl.) We met at a downtown restaurant and we even took pictures of the event. There was Toronto in his Spam Blimp T-shirt (still the coolest), Rhino (who has since disappeared from our happy little group), Elaine (who had been IndyFan, but had changed her name to HRH QE1), Darrell (can't remember if Darrell had a chat name) and me. It was great fun and Elaine and I made a bet. Basically, I chose Michael Andretti to win and she chose him to lose. Winner had to buy the loser dinner. Michael (who, at the time, was my favorite driver since his father had retired) went on to win the race and even though I left TO right after the race (it's a long drive back to Detroit and I had to work the next day), she remembered the bet and when she had work in Windsor in October of that year, she met me for dinner and paid up.

After the Toronto Chat Group, I got to meet DH1 at Mid-Ohio. For the longest time the chat meeting place was the Andretti Merchandise Trailer. "Where do you want to meet?" And since none of us really knew what the others looked like, I'd always pick the Andretti trailer since there was a good possibility that I was going to be buying something anyway. DH1 told me to look for a tall man with white hair and beard who looks like Kenny Rogers. Talk about easy to spot!!!! LOL!

And a good example how everybody on the chat was cool is that later that year, DH1 kept telling us how great the Cleveland race was and how we should all get together for a race. We're race fans, right? Let's all meet up at a race, instead of this one or two people here and there. Forty-plus people said, Yes, we want to go. DH1 put all forty-plus tickets on his credit card for people he had never met (but me) and had only known for a few months on the Internet. And every single solitary person paid him back! We had a fabulous group that year, unfortunately, never repeated in size, but we have a core group. But in 1996, we had Skippy come in from Australia, Caroline and Greg from Athens, GA, emmo2 from Indiana, Roadrunner from Albuquerque, LT and his wife from Virginia, Michael and Sharon from San Francisco (or that was 1997), Hell'nWheels, Elaine. I took Mom, emmo2 brought his sister, Mere (who we all thought was his wife), Hell'n brought her brother and a couple of his friends. It was a great time and to this day I will not give up the Cleveland race for anything. In fact, that's the one race that I tell all Champ Car fans that they have to attend. It's a brilliant concept as being a flat as a pancake airport, you can see the whole track from just about any of the grandstands. The only turn we absolutely can not see is Turn 8, but we have a great series of turns directly in front of us where stuff always happens.

So, if you're a Champ Car fan and haven't been to Cleveland, put it on your Must Go To Races List. It's the best deal in racing – cheap and always a great race.

It's now time for me to go home – I know, you're all heaving a sigh of relief as this entry has gone one forever!!!!

Be good and remember to use an adverb to modify a verb!!!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

The Five People You Meet In Heaven

Last night I finished reading Mitch Albom's latest book, The Five People You Meet In Heaven and I have to say that I quite enjoyed it. I loved his previous best-seller, Tuesdays with Morrie and as he's a Detroit Free Press sports columnist, I've been reading him for years.

The book gave me a lot to think about and I would think that everybody should read it. I guess some ultra right wing religious types (you know, the types our President likes to appeal to) would hate it because it wasn't all about God, at least, not in the way they prefer.

In Mitch's heaven, it's mostly about coming to terms with your life, i.e., making sense of different things that made you the person you are, and that makes sense to me. The five people you meet in heaven are supposed to help with the discovery. I recently read The Life of Pi by Yann Martel, which in the prologue made the claim that this story would make you believe in God, if you didn't. Now, I already believe in God, but did not understand why this story would make me believe in God, if I didn't. It didn't strengthen my faith in God or even make me question my faith in God. In my opinion, it was just an interesting story about a boy stuck on a lifeboat with a tiger. I enjoyed it, a lot more than I had expected to, but that was it. It's very possible that I missed something, but I have no clue what it was.

On the other hand, Mitch's book made me think more about life and death. I'm not really afraid of dying. I'm not planning on dying any time soon, mind you, but I'm not scared of it. I have too much I still want to do here on earth. The five are people whose lives you affected or vice versa, and you might not know them. I think it's really an intriguing idea.

Anyway, I think this book is worth the effort (and trust me, it's not a huge effort as it's only 196 pages and it's not exactly fine print. It took me less than four hours to read it, in fact, I would say it took me less than three hours to read). Unlike Hey Nostradamus I could see the hope in this book.

I'm not doing a very good job talking about the book at all, but would love to discuss it with someone who has read it.

Survey from Clarity

Got this survey from Clarity

Are you named after anyone? Yup, my Aunt Kathy

Do you wish on stars? Yes, although I don't know why since my wishes never come true.

Which finger is your favorite? Middle, and for the reason you think.

When did you last cry? The last time I cried it was for a really lame reason.

Do you like your handwriting? Somedays more than others.

What's your favorite lunch meat? I don't eat lunch meat being a vegetarian, but back in the day I liked turkey. I always hated bologna and salami. My brother and I both hated salami and we tried desperately to have PB&J every day for lunch. We knew all we had to do was get through Thursday and we were home free because my Mom is so Catholic that we never ate meat on Fridays. As long as we were making the sandwiches we were all set, but our sister actually liked bologna (*gag*), so we had to fight her to make the sandwiches.

Any bad habits? Swearing.

What is your most embarassing CD on the shelf? The Ultimate Manilow. I can't help it, I grew up with him and I enjoy singing along to his songs.

If you were another person, would you be friends with you? I think so, since I have lots of friends, and I can't imagine all of them feel sorry for me. I must be a somewhat okay person to hang with.

Have you ever told a secret you swore not to tell? I don't think so.

Do looks matter? Yes, but looks are subjective. A guy I find attractive might be butt-ugly to another woman, and vice versa. If you're asking do looks matter in this society, I'd say Yes to that too. The pretty people in this world definitely seem to have an easier time of it.

How do you release anger? Depends, in the car I scream at the asshole who just made some bonehead move, but in personal situations I even shut down or I cry. Rarely will the person at whom I'm angry actually know it.

Where is your second home? Second home? As in the place I lived second in my life, because I certainly don't own a second home!

What was your favorite toy as a child? Books

What class in school did you think was totally useless? Geometry, although Clarity has a point with gym class. I barely freaking passed because the teacher made us do gymnastics and you got so many points for being able to do certain moves. Well, I'm sorry but I'm not gymnastically or athletically inclined and I think it's stupid to grade people on things like art, gym, music. Those are talent driven and for the most part can't be learned.

Do you use sarcasm a lot? Oh yeah.

Have you ever been in a mosh pit? Yes, find an old punk like me who hasn't been!

What do you look for in a guy/girl? I've given up looking – have you read my blind and on-line dating stories????

What are your nicknames? Kat, and I hate it when people use it w/o being invited to.

Would you bungee jump? Hell no, and before you ask, I won't paraglide and parachute either!

Do you think you are strong willed? I can be about some things, and not at all about other things.

What's your favorite ice cream flavor? Guernsey's Crème de Novi which is essentially Mint chocolate chip made with crème de menthe. YUM!!!

Shoe size? 7, unless they're Chuck Taylors, then I take a 5.

What are your favorite colors? Black, red, olive green, and blue.

What is your least favorite thing? Stupid people

How many widsom teeth do you have? Zero

How many people have a crush on you right now? Same as always, zero!

What color pants are you wearing? Blue jean shorts/skirt.

What are you listening to right now? "Sparklers and Bottlerockets" by Tijuana Strip Club. Right now I'm listening to Hate the Sound of Rain.

Last thing you ate? Dry Cheerios

If you were a crayon, what color would you be? Red.

What is the weather like right now? Sunny, blue skies, summer in autumn, which is okay since we didn't have summer in summer.

Last person you talked to on the phone? My former supervisor

First thing you notice about the opposite sex? Face, eyes, smile

How are you today? Doing well, thanks. My allergies are a little annoying, but nothing new there.

Favorite drink? Water, but I will occasionally splurge and get myself a Pineapple Orange Faygo

Favorite alcoholic drink? Guinness

Favorite sport? Champ Car racing and hockey

Hair color? Strawberry blonde

Eye color? Blue.

Do you wear contacts? Only when I want to see.

Siblings? Older brother and sister, younger brother and sister. I am the poor neglected middle child! ;-)

Favorite food? Mashed potatoes

Last movie you watched? High Society with Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong. Musical remake of The Philadelphia Story. I quite enjoyed it.

What is your favorite day of the year? I'm narcissistic enough to say My Birthday!!!

Are you too shy to ask someone out? No, but I won't do it anymore. I've determined that regardless of what they say, men don't actually want to be asked out, unless it by a gorgeous model/famous actress.

Scary movies or happy endings? I'm not a big fan of scary movies and sometimes happy endings really annoy me.

Hugs or kisses? Hugs.

What are your current living arrangements? Living in my 1100 sq ft apt. with my two cats, Boris and Igor.

What's on your mouse pad? Work, nothing. Home, autographed Mario Andretti mousepad.

Favorite board game? Boggle

What did you watch on TV last night? Nothing, I was at the hospital visiting Maureen and Aidan and then I read my book.

Favorite smell? Vanilla and honeydew melon.

What is the first thing you think when you wake up? Dammit, I shouldn't have snoozed that one last time.

Favorite sound? Music

Boring Little life

I think my life is too boring for an on-line diary. Monday's big excitement was returning the ultra-expensive yarn I bought on Saturday when I was apparently braindead. I had two gift certificates, or so I thought, but when I went to check out, I discovered that I only had one of them on me. I ended up taking everything out of my basket except the ultra-expensive yarn, the needles I had promised to pick up for Martha and the needles I will need when I make my own felted backpack (I'm sure I'll be telling you all about that since it requires things like decreasing and shit like that). That night I lay in bed thinking to myself, "What the fuck is wrong with you, girl? What are you going to do with a shawl (this is what I imagined I would make) that has over $80 worth of yarn in it. I could barely sleep I was so stressed out. Stupid, eh? The yarn store was closed on Sunday so I called yesterday to make sure it was returnable (it was, as long as I hadn't tried using it) and get their hours (12-8). Whew. I reassured the woman that the yarn hadn't even come out of the bag. It was a gorgeous afternoon for a drive along Hines Drive, so I wasn't completely dreading rush hour traffic.

Of course, there was the requisite slow person (was doing 25mph in a 40mph zone), which makes my blood boil. I'm sorry you're old and feel the obligation to buy a big ol' Buick, but why must you be out during rush hour if you're scared to death to drive now that you've reached the age of 75!? There were two other cars in front of me and once the slow-poke turned off (being very careful not to roll that Buick), the three of us took off from the frustration of having just gone 20 mph under the speed limit. Thankfully, we got our emotions under control within a mile because there was the Sheriff sitting in a side drive. Whew! So glad I was only going 45 as we went past. The sight of the Sheriff's car though scared the crap out of the lead car and she slowed to 38mph. ARGH! I got past her at the next light, thankfully.

I had been thinking that from now I'm doing all my yarn shopping at the Lansing or Royal Oak stores as those people are the friendliest, but then the woman at Plymouth was very nice yesterday and even though $50 of my returned yarn was on a gift certificate, she refunded my credit card ($10 less than I had put on it, since needles are relatively cheap) since I think it was easier than figuring out exactly what was what. I now have the $100 GC left and until the end of February 2005 to use it. Maybe I'll get brave enough to make myself a sweater and I can use the $100 for that.

Yesterday I was going to buy the Star Wars trilogy on DVD (finally), but then I had to go to the hospital to visit my cousin who gave birth on Monday. She had an adorable little boy with the fullest head of hair I've ever seen on a newborn (and my nephew had a ton when he was born 16 years ago). He was 10 lbs. 1 oz and either 21 or 22 inches long. He already has cute adorable full baby cheeks! He is very sweet. So add another baby blanket to the list of stuff I have to make. *sigh* I do keep myself busy!!!!

I got home shortly after 8:00 p.m., had a spinach salad for dinner and then crawled into bed to finish Mitch Albom's The Five People You Meet In Heaven. My next entry will deal with that, as I think it's worthy of its very own!

Monday, September 20, 2004

Dating so sucks.

Today I'm going to rant a bit about men who are signed up with on-line dating services. The rant shall consist of a number of complaints, so deal !

I tried on-line dating last summer and about this time last year I made my profile private as I was tired of the complete freaking losers I was meeting. But I still get the "These are your weekly match-ups" e-mails, just in case. Last week's e-mail (which I got today since my home computer is still fucked) had four guys listed in it. The first two I can't even remember, the fourth's name was NASCAR_rocks2, so he was discounted immediately, as we all know I am a Champ Car snob, thank you very much. The third guy's picture/name didn't make me run screaming from the room, so I clicked on it to get the full details. What on earth is it about 42 year old men who are looking for a woman in the 20-30 range? Here is the portion of his statement that pissed me off: "What I am looking for is woman to talk to and possibly date. I am interested in a 20-30 year old woman (ask me why??). If you are over 30 and still look great--do not be offended--some older women take care of themselves and are much better looking and more fun (please contact me) than the younger beauty queen types who will not stay beautiful forever if they are not committed to being healthy. If you are a woman who can be supportive and loyal and fun then you should be able to benefit from being with me.(Ask me for more details). And I definitely dig career minded women and creative women with ideas and/or ambition (this would include creating a family)."

There is so much wrong with this (and I'm not even talking grammar, but I could) that's it's mind-boggling. I think I'll take a page from Julie's book and dissect this bit by bit.

What I am looking for is woman to talk to and possibly date = Sure, as long as you're young and beautiful and will put up with my 6'0" 150 lb bony ugly ass.

I am interested in a 20-30 year old woman (ask me why??). If you are over 30 and still look great--do not be offended--some older women take care of themselves and are much better looking and more fun (please contact me) = If any "older" woman (i.e., one his own fucking age) contacts this asshole, I'd like to smack them upside their fucking heads. Remember people, this fucker is FORTY-TWO years old!!!! But he's willing to condescend to a 30 year old. Yes, I'm offended. I'm not in the same shape I was when I was 30, but it's bloody hard when the metabolism shuts down, but I'm not a fat cow, although I do call myself one.

than the younger beauty queen types who will not stay beautiful forever if they are not committed to being healthy = Because we all know beauty is skin deep, but still, does he sound like he's talking out of both sides of his mouth? Go ahead, dickweed, date a Britney Spears-wannabe, because I'll bet she's a great conversationalist.

If you are a woman who can be supportive and loyal and fun then you should be able to benefit from being with me. (Ask me for more details). = In other words, be the dog he doesn't have. And I'm dying to know how any woman could benefit from this shallow Hal. I’m sure your self-esteem would be shot to hell the second you put on a pound and a half (or then again, he might just dump your ass for more of the 20 year olds he likes so well). I think I'd throw up if I were to find out what benefits dating him would provide me.

And I definitely dig career minded women and creative women with ideas and/or ambition (this would include creating a family)." = You are 42 years old, buddy. Even if he got married within the year and had a baby right away, he's going to be 44 when his kid is born, and 62 when s/he graduates from high school, while his 20 something wife is now in her 40s, if she's even lasted this long after giving birth to his child and not getting back to her pre-natal weight. And just because he's in "fabulous shape" so was Jim Fixx when he died in his early 50s.

The only point in his favor is that he spelled "definitely" correctly, since I've seen it spelled "definately" more times than I can count.

Last year when I was semi-serious about dating, I had a few first dates and they were winners, let me tell you.

All of them made a point of tellng me how often they worked out, which made me a little paranoid. "Shit, these guys are all in good shape. Damn, I'll have to lift weights tonight." Knowing full well that lifting weights for one night is going to do nothing, but what the hell.

First guy and I decide to check out a movie (I know, I know) after we had been chatting via e-mail for a month or so. He picks me up and we head to see Terminator 3, while he fills me in on the first two. We got to the theater early (this was dinner time, BTW) and sat there and chatted until the trailers and commercials started. 20 minutes later (no exaggeration here, it was 20 freaking minutes) I whispered to him something about the length of the commercials and then the movie started. We watched the movie, he drove me home (never mentioning food, although it was now 7:00 p.m.) and said something about "right when you started complaining…" Um, I wasn't complaining, I simply made a comment that 20 minutes of COMMERCIALS and trailers before a movie is a tad ridiculous. I didn't even use those words. Well, needless to say, I never heard from him again. Oh, and if he ran every day, it was down to the corner McDonald's. He wasn't fat, but he wasn't a runner either.

Guy #2 earned the name Icky Creepy Touchy Guy. I'm thinking that pretty much says it all, but I'll elucidate for you. We met for coffee one summer afternoon near my apt. I actually drove up just because I didn't want to walk in my sandals, as they weren't all that comfortable. It was in the 80s weather-wise, so I wore a cute little sundress with the sandals. I got there first and was waiting for a man with a shaved head. Now, I find shaved heads extraordinarly attractive, normally, so keep that in mind. I sat at a table and waited for him to show up to order my beverage. This bald man walks in and he's wearing all black. Now I'm all about black being a goth myself, but this guy didn't have a clue. He was wearing pleated black dress pants, black socks, black dress shoes and a faded blacked T-shirt with some sort of green creature on it. No self-respecting goth would have worn any of this outfit, but whatever. He also worked out three times a week doing karate or some such thing, but was a tad pudgy, I would say. I don't care if you're pudgy, but don’t tell me you work out daily or something when you obviously don't!

We order our drinks (I got a vanilla malt and he got a coffee). Oh yeah, Date #1 and Date #2? I paid for myself. All guys I've asked say that they always pay for the first date. Whatever. We sit down and drink our respective beverages and talk about God knows what. He was wearing some very cool silver rings, but I'm sorry, a word of advice, if you have fat pudgy extremely white fingers, you should not wear big rings that bring attention to your fat white fingers, okay?

I'm at the point where I'm trying to figure out what's the best way to get out of this date but since I suck at being assertive in situations like these, I ended up outside sitting on a bench (it was a gorgeous day, so this wasn't the problem). I lead the way to the bench and when I went to sit down, I noticed that he was RIGHT behind me, so I moved over a bit and then sat down – personal space and all, you know. Well, ICTG moved over too and literally sat right next to me. I don't think you could have put a piece of paper between us. Now you're thinking, "Kathleen, why didn't you just move over some more?" Ah, because I was stupid and when I sat down the first time leaving what I thought was space between us I sat down right on the edge of the bench. If I moved an inch to the right I would have been on the concrete.

It gets worse, so hang on to your seats. I'm pulling out all the stops here trying to be as unattractive as possible. I'm talking about Knitting Club as if it's the most exciting thing on earth so that he thinks I'm boring and obsessed, but he thought it was cool. *sigh* He had had his arm behind my back on the benchback the entire time and I had tried sitting up VERY straight because I could feel his hand on my back, but I was getting tired and really wanted to lean against the back, so I did and he started caressing my right shoulder with his thumb. EEEEWWWWWW!!!!! I tried to ignore it, because I didn't want to cause a scene, but I finally had to get away from the seeking thumb, so I leaned forward and pretended my ankle was itchy or something and rubbed it. For some reason, perhaps any men out there can explain this to me, he viewed this as an invitation to touch me. He reached down and took his fat-fingered white hand and caressed my ankle and up my calf to my knee and said something like, "Hmmm, nice." At this point, I looked at my watch and said, "Oh, I must get going, I have knitting club tonight and I must get ready." I know a lot of you are thinking, if he had been hot would you have been so bent out of shape about him touching you? Good question, I think I would be since it was a first date and it was not acceptable behavior. He insisted on giving me a hug good-bye and wanted to make plans to see me again. I told him I would e-mail him. And I did, telling him that I did not think he was the right person for me. He wrote back and said something, "Yeah, I got those vibes on Saturday." My question is if he had been getting vibes that I was interested why was he touching me?????

Date #3 was okay, nothing horrific, except that he supposedly competes in triathlons, but once again his body was not evidence of such activity. He was nice, but dull and I really can't remember anything about him except his general lack of dressing ability. In fact, I had met him at this bar (again near my apt) and even sat at the bar and there was a regular sitting on the other side of him. I was back at this bar the next night to meet a friend for a beer and the regular was there and while I waited for A to show up I chatted with Regular Guy and he questioned me about the obvious first date the night before and I said that he was nice, but that was about it and he made the first comment about the guy's sense of dress. He said, I didn't see you with him at all. Where did he get those shoes and that purple shirt? I had to laugh.

Date #4 took place six weeks or so later. I had been e-mailing this guy for a couple of months but we were both so busy that we hadn't been able to get together until September (I think). We agreed to see Seabiscuit since we had both read the book and were interested in seeing the movie. He picked a time, I agreed and he said, "What about dinner?" I said that would be good as I did have to eat. Now, there are lots of very good and interesting restaurants here in Dearborn, but he suggested Friday's or Rio Bravo at the Mall. *sigh* I didn't like either choice, but went with Friday's since I really hate fake Mexican. Day of the Date arrives and I get an e-mail from him telling me that he's going to pick up the tickets after work and he would meet me at Friday's at 4:55 p.m. I swear to God, he specified 4:55 p.m. I was going to be a smart ass and say, Okay, see you at 4:56 p.m., but decided not to. I get there right at 4:55 p.m. and he's already there. We say Hi, blah blah blah and go to get seated. Well, 5:00 p.m. is shift change at Friday's and although we got seated fairly quickly, the hostess apparently seated us where there were no servers, so we sat there for a good ten minutes before a waiter came over and got us and moved to us to his section. He was a very nice young man, not too friendly, but friendly and helpful. This is where things got weird. First off, he was wearing a wedding ring (Date #4, not the waiter). I knew he was a widower, but you'd think he'd take it off when on a date. Secondly, he wouldn't look at the waiter. When it was time to order, he obviously turned his head toward the other end of the table (away from the waiter), held out his menu and pointed to his choice. I was staring at him dumbfounded wondering where on earth he had gotten his manners. The waiter was very polite and asked "Soup or salad?" "Salad." "What kind of dressing?" "Bleu Cheese." Not once did he turn his head and acknowledge the young man. I literally couldn't believe it. I then felt obligated to go out of my way and be ultra nice to the waiter, who was more appealing by the moment than my wedding ring wearing freaky-ass date. The bill comes and as I pull out my purse for my money he does NOT say, "No, no, that's okay, I got it." Mind you, this person is a software engineer for a major corporation and has worked there probably 20 years, so he's close to six figures if not into the six figures. I hand him the money and then say, "How much do I owe you for the movie?" "$8.50, but you can just pay me $8." Wasn't that big of him?

We drive our separate cars to the theater and meet inside and go into the movie. I quite enjoyed Seabiscuit (the book and the movie), if anybody is keeping score. After the movie, he wanted to run to his car and get some pamphlet for me on some playhouse, but I told him it was okay, he could e-mail it to me. I then said, "Well, I'm parked out here" and indicated to the south." He replied, "I'm parked this way" and pointed north. Okay, well, good-bye. Now this was the matchstick that broke the camel's back – the movie theatre that we attended is at Fairlane Town Centre and if you live anywhere near the Detroit area you know it has a bad reputation. I normally don't go there at night and I'm actually not afraid to be there, but I wouldn't let a female friend walk to her car alone there at night, and he never once offered to walk me to my car.

He e-mailed me the next week and said he was going to be in my building that afternoon and he'd like to get together for a cup of tea. I wrote back and told him that I thought we were looking for different things and something else which was apparently pretty straightforward because when I went to visit Martha that afternoon at the time that I knew he was going to be in my building and told her what I had written, she laughed and said that there's no way he was going to walk by my desk.

And that was it. That day I made my profile private and gave up on men, especially engineers. I will not date an engineer ever again…I say this all the time, but the problem is that they're all I meet. I freaking work with engineers and am surrounded by engineers. It seems all there are in this world are salesmen and engineers and neither of them are my favorite type.

Good thing I love my cats, my friends and my family.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Moby rocks - and I don't mean his music, since I've never heard it, as far as I know.


9/14/2004 - New York City (from

"We're Not in Lake Wobegon Anymore"

By Garrison Keillor

Something has gone seriously haywire with the Republican Party. Once, it was the party of pragmatic Main Street businessmen in steel-rimmed spectacles who decried profligacy and waste, were devoted to their communities and supported the sort of prosperity that raises all ships.

They were good hearted people who vanquished the gnarlier elements of their party, the paranoid Roosevelt-haters, the flat Earthers and Prohibitionists, the antipapist antiforeigner element.

The genial Eisenhower was their man, a genuine American hero of D-Day, who made it OK for reasonable people to vote Republican.

He brought the Korean War to a stalemate, produced the Interstate Highway System, declined to rescue the French colonial army in Vietnam, and gave us a period of peace and prosperity, in which (oddly) American arts and letters flourished and higher education burgeoned and there was a degree of plain decency in the country.

Fifties Republicans were giants compared to today's.

Richard Nixon was the last Republican leader to feel a Christian obligation toward the poor. In the years between Nixon and Newt Gingrich, the party migrated southward down the Twisting Trail of Rhetoric and sneered at the idea of public service and became the Scourge of Liberalism, the Great Crusade Against the Sixties, the Death Star of Government, a gang of pirates that diverted and fascinated the media by their sheer chutzpah, such as the misty-eyed flag-waving of Ronald Reagan who, while George McGovern flew bombers in World War II, took a pass and made training films in Long Beach.

The Nixon moderate vanished like the passenger pigeon, purged by a legion of angry white men who rose to power on pure punk politics. "Bipartisanship is another term of date rape," says Grover Norquist, the Sid Vicious of the GOP. "I don't want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub." The boy has Oedipal problems and government is his daddy.

The party of Lincoln and Liberty was transmogrified into the party of hairy backed swamp developers and corporate shills, faith based economists, fundamentalist bullies with Bibles, Christians of convenience, freelance racists, misanthropic frat boys, shrieking midgets of AM radio, tax cheats, nihilists in golf pants, brownshirts in pinstripes, sweatshop tycoons, hacks, fakirs, aggressive dorks, Lamborghini libertarians, people who believe Neil Armstrong's moonwalk was filmed in Roswell, New Mexico, little honkers out to diminish the rest of us, Newt's evil spawn and their Etch-A-Sketch president, a dull and rigid man suspicious of the free flow of information and of secular institutions, whose philosophy is a jumble of badly sutured body parts trying to walk. Republicans: The No.1 reason the rest of the world thinks we're deaf, dumb and dangerous.

Rich ironies abound! Lies pop up like toadstools in the forest! Wild swine crowd round the public trough! Outrageous gerrymandering! Pocket lining on a massive scale! Paid lobbyists sit in committee rooms and write legislation to alleviate the suffering of billionaires!

Hypocrisies shine like cat turds in the moonlight! O Mark Twain, where art thou at this hour? Arise and behold the Gilded Age reincarnated gaudier than ever, upholding great wealth as the sure sign of Divine Grace.

Here in 2004, George W. Bush is running for reelection on a platform of tragedy - the single greatest failure of national defense in our history, the attacks of 9/11 in which 19 men with box cutters put this nation into a tailspin, a failure the details of which the White House fought to keep secret even as it ran the country into hock up to the hubcaps, thanks to generous tax cuts for the well-fixed, hoping to lead us into a box canyon of debt that will render government impotent, even as we engage in a war against a small country that was undertaken for the president's personal satisfaction but sold to the American public on the basis of brazen misinformation, a war whose purpose is to distract us from an enormous transfer of wealth taking place in this country, flowing upward, and the deception is working beautifully.

The concentration of wealth and power in the hands of the few is the death knell of democracy. No republic in the history of humanity has survived this. The election of 2004 will say something about what happens to ours. The omens are not good.

Our beloved land has been fogged with fear - fear, the greatest political strategy ever. An ominous silence, distant sirens, a drumbeat of whispered warnings and alarms to keep the public uneasy and silence the opposition. And in a time of vague fear, you can appoint bullet-brained judges, strip the bark off the Constitution, eviscerate federal regulatory agencies, bring public education to a standstill, stupefy the press, lavish gorgeous tax breaks on the rich.

There is a stink drifting through this election year. It isn't the Florida recount or the Supreme Court decision. No, it's 9/11 that we keep coming back to. It wasn't the "end of innocence," or a turning point in our history, or a cosmic occurrence, it was an event, a lapse of security. And patriotism shouldn't prevent people from asking hard questions of the man who was purportedly in charge of national security at the time.

Whenever I think of those New Yorkers hurrying along Park Place or getting off the No.1 Broadway local, hustling toward their office on the 90th floor, the morning paper under their arms, I think of that non-reader George W. Bush and how he hopes to exploit those people with a little economic uptick, maybe the capture of Osama, cruise to victory in November and proceed to get some serious nation-changing done in his second term.

This year, as in the past, Republicans will portray us Democrats as embittered academics, desiccated Unitarians, whacked-out hippies and communards, people who talk to telephone poles, the party of the Deadheads. They will wave enormous flags and wow over and over the footage of firemen in the wreckage of the World Trade Center and bodies being carried out and they will lie about their economic policies with astonishing enthusiasm.

The Union is what needs defending this year. Government of Enron and by Halliburton and for the Southern Baptists is not the same as what Lincoln spoke of. This gang of Pithecanthropus Republicanii has humbugged us to death on terrorism and tax cuts for the comfy and school prayer and flag burning and claimed the right to know what books we read and to dump their sewage upstream from the town and clear-cut the forests and gut the IRS and mark up the constitution on behalf of intolerance and promote the corporate takeover of the public airwaves and to hell with anybody who opposes them.

This is a great country, and it wasn't made so by angry people. We have a sacred duty to bequeath it to our grandchildren in better shape than however we found it. We have a long way to go and we're not getting any younger.

Dante said that the hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who in time of crisis remain neutral, so I have spoken my piece, and thank you, dear reader. It's a beautiful world, rain or shine, and there is more to life than winning.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Movie Lists

Today's entry is going to be a list of movies that the entire world has seen but me, with additional commentary as I see fit.

Top Gun – Tom Cruise (in my book, 'nuff said)

Days of Thunder – Tom Cruise and NASCAR

Mission Impossible – Um, again Tom Cruise

In fact, it would be easier if I listed the Tom Cruise movies I've seen and regret:

Risky Business - Okay, I don’t actually regret this one

The Firm – Tom Cruise and John Grisham – sucked major ass, as if the book wasn't bad enough!!!

Jerry Maguire – If it hadn't been for Cuba Gooding, Jr., I wouldn't have bothered at all with this one.

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled list:

Cold Mountain – This movie doesn't even begin to interest me in the slightest.

The Hours – Read the book and freaking hated it, can't imagine why I would waste my time on the movie.

Terminator & T2 – Just never saw them and at this point, it's almost a badge of honor, especially since he's now a politician. I did see the third one and although it was okay, it didn't make me feel like I missed anything by not seeing the first two.

Die Hard (all of them) – I don't even have Bruce Willis issues, just never saw them.

Patton – Not a big war movie fan.

Natural Born Killers – Not really my subject matter

The Towering Inferno – Although I might add it to my list.

Jaws – Never interested in this one

Trainspotting – I know people who thought it was fabulous, but one of those people also loved Bubba-Ho-Tep, so we won't be taking his/her advice, will we?

Rambo (any and all) – I refuse to watch Sylvester Stallone movies as a general rule.

Rocky (all) – Although I might have seen part of the original one but am thankful I fell asleep.

American Pie – Again, absolutely no interest.

The Big Chill – And I have to say I really have no desire to see this movie

Groundhog Day – I have huge Bill Murray issues

Office Space – Just haven't seen it. I did see Clock Watchers though, and Haiku Tunnel.

Any and all Policy Academy movies – I have an issue with stupid slapstick.

Name a Jim Carrey movie and I can guarantee I haven't seen it. I can handle approximately 3.5 seconds of him before I want to shoot my television

This is Spinal Tap – It's in my queue, I swear! I'll see it sometime this decade!

Raising Arizona – Back to my Coen Brother issues


The Jerk

The Money Pit – It just looked unbelievably stupid.


Weekend at Bernie's

Godfather (all of them) – I have violence issues, so I just never bothered with these.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show – At some point I think I'd like to see this, but not on TV (it's been on USA) since I'm sure it'll be cut all to hell.

Saving Private Ryan – Violence and war. Yeah, I know they go together, but I really don't deal well with them.

Thin Red Line – Ditto.

Stand By Me

A River Runs Through It

The Passion – And my plan is never to see it.

American Beauty – Not sure if I'm going to see this. I love Kevin Spacey, but I've had a number of people tell me that this is not a "Kathleen movie" so I'm torn.



Six Degrees of Separation

Coming Home

The Deerhunter

Revenge of the Nerds

Movies I regret seeing:

Robocop (I & II) – Girls, never give in and see violent movies just to appease the man.

Predator (I & II) – Same as above! Just say NO!!!!

Fargo – I fucking hated this movie beyond words.

Barton Fink – Another Coen Brothers film which makes me question their popularity.

Dirty Dancing – Another movie whose popularity I do not understand.

Driven – My only Stallone movie, but I had to see it as it was ostensibly about my beloved Champ Car series, but there were more things wrong (factually) with that movie than were right. I saw it with a bunch of Champ Car fans and we were yelling at the screen when anything blatantly wrong occurred. Thanks, Sly, for doing such an incredibly bad job of introducing open-wheel racing to the uninitiated. I was also at most of the races so if you could get out a magnifying glass and stop the movie you might find me in the crowd scenes.

The Witches of Eastwick – I almost puked watching this movie. Never again! Thank God it was free.

The Road to Wellville – Great if you love exceptionally lame scatological references and humor. I don't get offended by such things and have even found them funny on many occasions, but this movie was a complete waste of time and space!!!! Don't waste your time!

Jumanji – And I love Robin Williams

Pacific Heights – This movie freaked me out big-time, just thinking about it gives me the heebie-jeebies!!!

A Midsummer's Night Sex Comedy – I'm very sorry and hope I don't offend all the Woody Allen fans out there, but I do not think that WA is a film genius and I can't be bothered to waste my precious time on any of them.

Faces of Death – I don't even remember the group of people with whom I watched these (along with the aforementioned Woody Allen movie), but God these are just bloody awful!!!

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

And so, we're chastened, we feel so insecure...

I watched two more Hitchcock movies over the weekend and should have two more by tomorrow. I watched Spellbound with Gregory Peck and Ingrid Bergman and The Trouble with Harry starring John Forsythe, Edmund Gwenne and Shirley MacLaine in her film debut. I had seen a few moments of Spellbound a few months ago on TCM, but when I realised that I was halfway through the movie I turned it off and moved it up on my Netflix queue. The Trouble with Harry was pretty funny. Back in 1955 it was considered dark comedy, but I'd say it wasn't all that dark compared to today's standards. It even had a very young Jerry Mathers in it!

My Champ Car boys had a race this past Sunday at one of my favorite race tracks, Laguna Seca. Patrick Carpentier, the "affable French-Canadian" won the race. I put that in quotes because almost every single story about him describes him thusly. He's a very nice person and very friendly with the fans. One of his teammates is not quite so friendly and is not high at all on my list of favorite drivers. In fact, I'd say he's not on it at all, especially after this Sunday when he took Sebastian out of the race on the first lap. For the record, I'm rooting for Sebastian Bourdais to win the championship.

Of course, the highlight of the race was my absolute favorite driver (currently driving) was on the podium. Way to go, Oriol!!!! He drives for Dale Coyne Racing which is one of the smaller teams in the paddock (by smaller read: poor), so a podium finish is brilliant! If I had been at the race I can guarantee you I would have been crying, and racing for the podium to cheer my boy on! I got his autograph in Toronto telling him he was my favorite driver and it seemed he was surprised by that, saying "Really?" Of course, in Toronto it's assumed that you're Canadian and therefore rooting for Paul Tracy, but I don't call Paul PFT for nothing. You figure out what the F stands for!!!!!

Woohoo!!! Just read at the Laguna Seca website that my favorite Toyota Atlantics driver won that championship! Congratulations, Jon Fogarty!!!!!! Now if only a Champ Car team owner would give him a freaking ride!!!!!!! And while I'm on the subject, here are some other drivers out there who deserve rides: Memo Gidley, Hoover Orsi, Alex Barron, and Bryan Herta. Technically, the last two drivers have rides, but since they drive for the Evil Empire, it doesn't count as a real ride. Poor Alex and Bryan stuck in the Idiot Racing League. Of course, I would prefer Memo, Jon or Hoover getting Champ Car rides over drivers who lowered their standards went to the Icky Racing League.

I'm now looking forward to next weekend and my racing weekend in Vegas. It'll probably be my last race of the season since the last two are Australia and Mexico City. I would DEARLY love to get to Mexico City for the race and visit my family there, but I have no vacation time left. I'll have to plan better for next year! And it's even going to be the last race of the season so I'm really bummed to miss it.

This coming weekend will be spent at the DSO celebrating Mom's b-day a day late. Her presents will include: the rosary I made her (already blessed), a light blue Champ Car shirt to replace the one she poured bleach on, an orange Champ Car hat and the concert. Now if she's only not late to my house. Saturday is more yarn shopping and knitting club. Don't stress. I have gift certificates to this yarn shop! And then no plans for Sunday which is okay with me. I need to pretend to fix my home computer and I still have a shitload of knitting to do.

Yarn Dorks!!!!

Julie found this website yesterday and it made me laugh out loud this morning. It's some unbelievably awful senior pictures with some cutting commentary.


Damn, I'm tired. Yesterday was a very long day. I got up at 4:30 in order to be at work by 5:30 so that I could leave early because Julie and I had plans to go to the Lansing yarn store and we didn't want to get stuck in Detroit rush hour traffic. It was actually pretty easy getting up at 4:30 because I had slept like crap all night long. I'm telling you I was like a little kid who knows they're going to the Zoo the next day. I was so bloody excited about going to this particular yarn shop that I couldn't sleep and when I did sleep I dreamt about the yarn shop. It's a little pathetic. ;-)

We were on the road by 3:30 but stopped in Howell for gas and some other things, so it took us closer to two hours to get there than the hour and half Mapquest told us. But I have to say it was worth the drive, especially since Julie was driving. Just kidding. I'd totally drive anytime, but Julie gets carsick if she's not driving, so she just prefers to drive. We got there and were blown away by this store. Julie took pictures, so check her blog later today and you can see this place for itself. I have to send out an e-mail to the Knitting Club and make them jealous! It was everything I dreamed it would be. The owners were fun and nice and helpful, and the yarns were to die for! I can't wait to get started on some of my projects. I have so so many to do!

We met Julie's CD store owning husband Glen for dinner at a fabulous Italian restaurant and our friends Amy and Tony drove up to Novi to join us. It was quite an enjoyable evening, but I didn't crawl into bed until after 10:00, which is late when the alarm goes off at 4:30 (it always goes off at 4:30, but I usually don't drag my butt out of bed until 4:55), and then I had residual yarn excitement which resulted in even more bizarre dreams containing teenaged female TV stars whose names I don't know. I don't even watch teenaged female TV stars, so I have no idea why they are showing up in my subconscious. The one in my dream was, I think, Lindsay Lohan and the gist was that she was broke because she bought a bar and her father (who was really the father from that Christian family TV show Heaven something or other, I think) was there, but I don’t remember him for yelling at her for wasting all her money. And I just remember being bemused by the possibility of spending millions of dollars and being broke. Tonight I'm going to bed at 7:00 p.m.!!! I'm so bloody tired, but it was worth it, I have to say. It is the most fantastic yarn shop ever!!!!

I think I'll crawl under my desk now and take a little nap. I wonder if anybody will notice….

The Blind Date From Hell

Okay, I guess I promised my blind date story, so here goes. In 1997, I was living in San Francisco and had gone to one of the local radio station's Birthday parties that they throw for themselves. Flock of Seagulls, The Fixx, They Might Be Giants, Poe and The Cardigans all played at this concert and it was rockin'. The Fixx looked the same, if a tad older. They Might Be Giants looked EXACTLY the same – you'd never have guessed that 15 years had passed while Flock of Seagulls had aged badly and looked particularly jowly. Oh yeah, the music was GREAT! ;-)

I saw this really cute guy and as Julius had disappeared to hit on chicks, I started talking to him and his friend. Cute guy's name was Dustin (can't remember friend's name) and at some point we all exchanged phone #s. I ended up inviting Dustin to go to the Sharks/Red Wings game with me. He had never been to a hockey game but was willing to check it out. As is always the case with me, he wasn't actually interested in me at all, but the nameless friend thought I was way cool and was intent on finding a friend of his to date me. Nameless was married with children, BTW, and I was NOT interested in him anyway.

I get a call from Nameless one day and he has found a friend with whom to fix me up and I hate to be judgmental w/o meeting people, so I agree to this blind date. BIG MISTAKE. Blind date's name is Carmelo. Julius being the adult that he is had to make fun of his name and asked if I was dating a candy bar. *sigh* Good thing I love the big lug (Julius, not Carmelo). By this time, I had moved out of Julius' apt. and gotten my own in the same building (Thank God for this, as you'll see later.) We had one of those closed circuit television cameras so that you can see the front door on your cable TV. Day of the big date arrives (I think I had talked to Carmelo prior to this to set it up, but I don't remember. It was seven years ago, you know.) and it was a Thursday, if I remember correctly and there was something on TV that I had to tape (can't remember for the life of me what it was now, but it was VERY important at the time), so when he rang me I checked the closed circuit and told him that I would be down in a minute. I quickly set the VCR, grabbed my black leather motorcycle jacket and went downstairs. When I got outside there was nobody right outside the door, so I looked around and saw a Philippino guy standing in front of a truck in the bldg.'s driveway. I ask him if he's Carmelo and he says No. I'm puzzled as there is nobody else around. I look down the block and still see nobody, but start heading for the corner, thinking he went to the coffee shop. As I'm walking away, I hear, "Just kidding. I'm Carmelo." I just looked at him with The Look and said, "Not funny." Then he proceeded to tell me what a funny guy he is. Oh yeah, that's funny. At this point, the date's 30 seconds old and I'm already pissed off. Oh, and he asked me if I was surprised to find out he was Philippino and did I care. Um no, I do have a brain and it's not like Carmelo is a real popular name among the Anglo-Saxon crowd. Just because you're an idiot doesn't mean I'm one.

We start walking up the street while I tell him the different restaurant choices we have. We decide on this restaurant on Fillmore at Jackson, called, funnily enough, The Jackson Fillmore, and as we are walking he makes conversation by touching the Senna sticker I had on my jacket that was coming off. Now, this sticker was located right about butt-level, so this guy, within five minutes of meeting me, is touching my ass. I told him who Senna is and told him that the "sticker is fine, it's not going to come off," i.e., Yo, jackass, quit touching my ass. I didn't exactly say that as I was trying to be refined, but he kept touching it, pretending he's trying to make it stick. I finally told him to stop it.

We get to the restaurant and get seated right at the front in front of the plate glass. He asked if I wanted a glass of wine and I said No thanks. He proceeded to get a glass of red wine which was apparently to die for. He kept offering me a sip and I kept saying No, thank you. I don't like red wine. This happened at least three times. Finally he said, "I'm not trying to get you drunk." Yeah, right. Whatever.

And the thing that should never ever be said in polite society was said. I don't even remember the conversation but I can't believe I was discussing anything that would induce him to say this. "So, do you like strangulation?" I gaped at him, thinking to myself "What an idiot, strangulation leads to death. Who would answer yes to this question?" And I gasp, "No" with the most incredulous look ever on my face. Everybody tells me that I should have left right there and then, but I didn't want to be rude.

Oh yeah, during dinner one of my friends from work walked by and saw me sitting in the front window and made faces at me as he walked past. I had to giggle as I was having such a horrible time at this point.

After dinner we walked back down Fillmore to my bldg. I wanted him to leave but was just not assertive enough to say, "Well, it's been nice…" before he said, Want to get a drink somewhere? Shit. I really had to pee at this point but didn't want to let him into my apt., and didn't really want to pee in a bar when home was so close. So, we went up to Julius' (see, I told you he was going to come in handy), and I peed while Julius entertained. LOL! Then we went up to the corner bar which is now John Lee Hooker's Boom Boom Room, but wasn't then, but for the life of me I can't remember the name as this was the only time I ever went in there. I had a Guinness and wondered how quickly I could get out of this and go home. For the record, the Guinness was the highlight of the night. We had the one beer and we walked to his car (which was on the way to my apt.) and I left him there.

The next day at work everybody asked me how it went, and when I told them about the strangulation line they all just looked askance at me. Someone said something and that's when (I'm a little slow when it comes to that sort of thing, I must admit) I realised that he wasn't talking about strangulation as a death device, but as a sexual thing. OOOOHHHH!!!! My friends all laughed at me for being so naïve, and for months after that the friend who had walked past the restaurant would make gestures at me with his hands wrapped around his neck.

Nameless called me a couple of days later to see how it went. I said, "Don’t ever fix Carmelo up with women you actually like!" He asked why, of course. And I told him about the sticker "Remember the sticker on my jacket and its placement?" "Yes." He was appalled that he had so brazenly touched me so early in the date. And then I told him about the strangulation comment. He was again appalled and apologised. I told him it was okay, just don't set up Carmelo again! I talked to Nameless a few weeks later and the strangulation story had gotten around Carmelo's work, so he was taking a whole lot of ribbing and he was insisting that he hadn't meant it like that at all. Uh huh. Right.

So, if you live in the Bay Area and someone tries to set you up with a Carmelo who works in an automotive garage, do yourself a favor and don't go…or beat him to the strangulation punch line! ;-)

Monday, September 13, 2004

Kathleen's Basic Etiquette Rules

For all those expecting the blind date story, I'm very sorry, but you'll have to wait a little longer, because I have something much more important to discuss today. Basic Etiquette. I'm not Emily Post or Amy Vanderbilt, but this is something that every person will be able to follow. Trust me. Here follows Kathleen's Rules of Etiquette:

1) There are still some occasions for which you should dress up. I shall list them for you, to avoid any conflicts. I'll describe "dress up" for you all in a little bit.

Church, weddings, funerals, the symphony and opera. I'm sure there are others, but these are the five biggies in my opinion. Under absolutely no circumstances are jeans and a t-shirt appropriate for any of these venues. I don't care if it's your absolutely favoritest Harley Davidson t-shirt or not, just because it's black does not mean it's even close to Black Tie. NOT APPROPRIATE! And if you take those same jeans and pair them with a cotton short-sleeved shirt, it is still not appropriate symphony-wear, but at the freaking very least, iron the damn shirt. I will concede a nice pair of khakis (if I must), but not the same pair you wore to work all week!!! And press your shirt!!!! You would not believe some of the outfits I saw on Friday night. Appalling! No, you don't need to be dressed nicely in order to appreciate the music, but it shows respect for the people who are on that stage playing the music.

2) TURN OFF YOUR FUCKING CELL PHONE when you go to the symphony, opera, church, weddings and/or funerals. Some asshole who was apparently late (and there were many) and missed the request to "take a moment and turn off all cell phones, beepers or paging devices" had his/her cell phone go off in the middle of Carmina Burana. VERY NICE, fuckhead! My cell phone is almost always on vibrate, except at home, but I still turned it off for the symphony. It's really not hard.

3) BE ON TIME for said events. And by that, I don't mean show up five minutes before the symphony or opera is scheduled to start, because (this is where a little thinking comes in handy) if everybody shows up at 5 minutes to eight, then we have the poor ushers trying to seat thousands of clueless people who have no idea where their seats are, and guess what? The Symphony waits for no man!!!! Again, show a little respect for the musicians on the stage or courtesy to those people who were smart enough to get there early. I had people standing in front of me while Maestro Järvi was already conducting the Opening Weekend's national anthems (The Estonian, as well as the Star Spangled Banner). He probably started the Wagner at 8:10 and people were still pouring through the doors. Thankfully they do not seat people during performances, but all those inconsiderate idiots had to be seated in the minimal break between the Wagner and the Strauss.

And then the idiot who showed up AFTER the intermission in the middle of Carmina Burana? He came in the door to my right, walked all the way over to the left and then down all the way to the front of the balcony, so he disrupted just about the entire balcony. Other people who came in late from Intermission (and by that I mean one minute) were considerate and watched from the nearest open seats they could find. I wanted to smack the crap out of that shithead.

4) DO NOT TALK/WHISPER DURING THE PERFORMANCE. It's just not necessary, people!!! There was a woman three rows up and four seats over that whispered during the first few minutes of the Wagner until I turned around and gave her "The Look," along with the disgusted shake of the head. It worked until the beginning of the Strauss, where she once again felt the need to have a conversation. The constant sibilance was not an attractive addition to the orchestra's playing. Another person just begging for a good smack upside the head.

And for all those who were so desperately worried about my CD of Carmina Burana, I found it on Saturday. I categorise my CDs (Pop/Rock, Soundtracks, Opera, Classical, etc.) and I had filed it under opera for some reason. Dumbass!

Friday, September 10, 2004

Weekend Yarn Plans

Tonight is Opening Night at the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (okay, I think last night was the actual opening night, but tonight is the opening night of the Friday series) and I'm going with Darrell. Before the symphony we're going to my favorite restaurant in Detroit, The Traffic Jam & Snug. I'm pretty excited as I haven't been there in a while. Their Portabello Mushroom Soup is FABULOUS!!!! Oh, they have the Asparagus and Swiss Broil on the menu. It's my favorite! And trust me, if you live in the Detroit area or are ever in the area, you MUST eat here. And save room for Dessert because they are all to die for!!!! My favorite is the Double Berry Crisp, and just so you understand how wonderful it is, I'm normally a chocolate person!!!!!

They also brew their own beer, make their own cheese and bread, and carry Motor City Brewing beers as well. Oh yummy!!! It's all good, people!

Well, you know how I mentioned earlier this week that I had to listen to Carmina Burana this week before the DSO's performance of it this evening? I tried, really, I did. This morning before leaving for work I went into the living room to get it and bring it with me today. I was going to give the Tijuana Strip Club a break today, but I couldn't find my copy. ARGH!!! I was so not happy. I really wanted to hear it before tonight, just to remind myself. My plan when I get home is 1) wash the dress I wore to the wedding, so that I can wear it tonight; 2) clean the apt. (and in the process, find Carmina Burana); 3) vacuum; and 4) fit in a nap and a shower – all before 5:45/6:00 p.m. Let's guess what I actually get accomplished.

My plans tomorrow have been changed. I was supposed to go the new Lansing yarn shop tomorrow with my knitting club. I ordered some yarn from them (basically just for an excuse to visit them) and it arrived this week. Everything was all set. We were going to leave Dearborn around 10:00, get there around 11:30, swoon over the yarn, buy too much, go for lunch and then go home, but then we learned some bad news. Stupid ass college football has started and we all know what that means (hint: avoid all college towns on home game day) and MSU is having a home football game this weekend. *sigh* Since we're a "thinking on our feet kind of group" we re-adjusted the yarn extravaganza to Royal Oak (no major university there) where the yarn store is having its annual sale. I still have my gift certificate to use so I can buy yarn w/o actually spending any money (in theory). I'm pretty excited. And since the whole college football season lasts way too damn long and I don't want to wait forever for my yarn, Julie suggested going one evening after work. They're open late on Monday nights, so that's the day I'm aiming for. Keep your fingers crossed!!!!

I guess that's it for today. One of these days I have to remember to tell you that story of my blind date when I lived in SF. It's classic!!!

Tigers Doubleheader

Yay, it's Friday! Normally I don't stress about the whole "Yay, it's Friday" thing as I normally don't work Fridays. Yes, go ahead, hate me. I work four ten-hour days and then get to laze about on Fridays, but whenever there's a holiday in the week, I'm back to 8 hour days, which aren't bad actually, although I feel like a complete slacker leaving at 2:30, but not enough as to stay and work when I'm not being paid. I'm sorry, but they don't pay me enough to donate my time to this company. Don't get me wrong, I love my job and the people with whom and for whom I work, but this is a major corporation and has shitloads more money than me, so guess what? My time is my own, thank you very much. Especially when there's important things to be done at home.

Yesterday was a great day to be at the ballpark for an all too rare doubleheader! It was just Glen and me as everybody else was busy pretending they weren't slackers. ;-) Now, if any of you watched any sports highlights shows yesterday I'm betting you saw big footage of the first game. My Tigers were not impressive during the first game. And that might be putting it mildly. Now, we all know the Tigers are not the best team in the league, but nor are they the worst. LOL! That fine distinction belongs to the team that beat the frickin' pants off us yesterday. Yup, the Tigers lost 26-5 to the Kansas City Royals breaking two records along the way! KC had NEVER scored that many runs in one game their history and the Tigers had never given up that many runs. Sad, isn't it?

Jason Johnson pitched the first game for the Tiges and he walked his first two batters. I was glad for him because he got that whole worrisome perfect game problem out of the way right off the bat. The Royals scored EIGHT runs in the first inning. Now, you're probably thinking, "Wow, that's not very good." And you'd be right, but then came the third inning which was INTERMINABLE! I mean, it literally lasted damn near an hour and that was just the top of the inning! The bad guys in blue scored ELEVEN runs in that inning. Glen and I were just laughing, because what else can you do when your team decides it's time to channel the 2003 Tigers? Hell, after that incredibly mind-boggling 3rd inning, Alan Trammel pulled Pudge and Carlos Guillen to save them for the second game.

Thank God for the second game, though, because it salvaged the day away from work. The 2004 Tigers showed up for that game and they won 8-0. Good solid game from everybody, especially Carlos Guillen, who made a spectacular catch by jumping 25 ft in the air to snag the ball that would have been a freaking single in the first game, and Jeremy Bonderman who pitched 8 solid innings and had 9 strikeouts. He had a miserable middle of the season, but his last four starts have been very good for him. The nice thing about the second game is that we got the #1 line-up! No Eric Munson (whose fielding leaves something to be desired). No Jason Smith (who rivals Eric in his fielding abilities). Pudge behind the plate, Brandon at 3rd and Dimitri Young DHing like he's supposed to.

Baseball's not hockey, but hell with the lockout looming I'm going to enjoy what I can. It's funny, or maybe not so, when you think about it, but I loved baseball in the 70s and even early 80s, but then I got sidetracked with college and working and I didn't have time for it. And then like a lot of people after the strike I just couldn't be bothered to watch it. But last year I went to six or so games – this is good when you think about how bad the Tigers were last year – it rekindled something in me. I don’t watch every game (that's reserved for the Wings and Champ Car), but I do turn it on and check out the score regularly and I've been to quite a few games already this year. And we're hoping to get to at least one more game this year – aiming for Oct. 2, the last weekend and a Saturday night game which means fireworks! I haven't seen any this year, so that would be nice.

All in all, not a bad way to spend a gorgeous sunny Thursday afternoon in Detroit in September. Thanks, Glen, for having the brilliant idea!!!

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Go Tigers!!!!

Well, I might be taking off early today because the Tigers have a doubleheader today starting at noon and it's supposed to be a nice day. Glen e-mailed late last night (after midnight, so that's probably technically very early this morning) asking if anybody was up for the game. My first thought was "I have to work." Then my second thought was I can leave by 2:15 since I was here at 5:45 and then I thought, Hmmm, I have comp time! I wonder if one ticket will work for both games? That would be SWEET! And I can wear my new Tigers cap that I got for my b-day from Meg. It's all very exciting, which means that nobody else will want to go. *sigh* But then again, it's not like Glen and I couldn't go.

So, yesterday I didn't walk for veggies, as when I left work the weather was crappy – chilly breeze, cloudy and felt like rain –which explains why my knees were hurting yesterday. You know I'd rather not have the ability to guess the weather by the pain in my knees. That's my excuse and I'm sticking with it. The problem with going to the games today though is that I do have plans to meet Martha for drinks at Cheli's and not just drinks but I was going to get the nachos which are literally the best in the world!!!! Ah well, I don't need nachos. I probably don't need a baseball doubleheader either, but that won't add to my already ample waistline.

I've watched two of the three new episodes of Bands Reunited on VH1. I missed the Haircut 100 one on Monday, and they don't have a rebroadcast date yet, so I'm bumming. I watched The New Kids on the Block episode on Tuesday and it was a half hour long meaning NO REUNION, which didn't bother me at all as I'm a little older than the NTKOB group. I remember my cousin who is 18 years younger than me being really into them oh so many years ago and I didn't have a clue who they were – comes from being a punk in college. Anyway, that one didn't matter to me one way or the other, but last night was ABC and even though only two agreed to reunite, they still had a concert with session musicians and Nick Beggs from Kajagoogoo (who helped set up Martin Fry for the Bands Reunited crew) filling in for the two missing members. To me it was sad that the two missing members weren't even willing to meet for the reunion. There was nothing that said they had to put on a concert. There was at least one band last season that only got together for the reunion (can't remember which one though). They hadn't seen each other since 1983. I don't know, it makes me sad, because it strikes me as a missed opportunity. Martin Fry sounded the same and looked pretty good for a 44 year old (or 43). He even came out in a gold suit which was classic ABC. And I now have a bit of a crush on David Palmer, the drummer. He's very cute and only 39. ;-) He now plays with Rod Stewart's band, so I might have to go to a Rod Stewart concert. LOL!!! Okay, probably not.

Tonight is The English Beat, one of my all time favorite bands, so I'll be setting the VCR for the 10:00 p.m. show, as I’m hoping to be at the baseball game for the 5:00 p.m. showing. I'm really bummed that they don't have any rebroadcasts of Haircut 100 scheduled. All the other ones have multiple rebroadcasts already scheduled. I wonder what's up with that. If I had known that they were only going to show it the once I would have set the VCR before I went to bed. DANG!

I have no idea how to list websites along the sides of my page (I'm still learning), I decided to list my favorite blogs/diaries here:

My dear friend Suzy, who is not updating as often as I'd like her to, but I understand that life does get in the way sometimes.

The West Virginia Surf Report by Jeff Kay. He makes me laugh.

Mark Maynard's site. He's funny and political, and will occasionally post pictures of his beautiful baby, Clementine. Those alone are worth the price of admission.

Kevin is very funny, but, like Suzy, isn't posting as often as I would like. Not that I begrudge him his time away, I just miss his stories from the strip club.

Julie is the brave woman who took on the task of teaching me how to crochet and knit. She's also a computer whiz and has kindly agreed to come over at some point and help me with my POS home computer. So, go read her blog and help her numbers grow!!!

Glen's website doesn't get updated all that often as he's a busy man running his own business, but when he does, it's worth it.

Darrell's site. He's my friend who is very into politics. His site isn't always about politics, though, and it's worth checking out when he's not swamped with work. Go to his site and remind him that he doesn't get paid OT for all that OT work he does. ;-)

Todd Vodka is as far as I know the first person to read my site, so I owe him! Thanks, Mr. Vodka!

Well, I guess that's all I have for today, so far. If I don't go to the game, I might bore you all later. In the meantime, have a great day.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

More boring crap

Well, you know it's not the best day you've ever had when you buy a piece of cheese from the sucky work cafeteria for 30 cents and then after you've heated up your less than fabulous, but would still be filling, lunch and put on the cheese and it's melted oh so beautifully that you proceed to drop said lunch on the coffee room floor (now this floor hasn't been cleaned since the Nixon Administration). Granted I wasn't really looking forward to it, but I was quite hungry and looking forward to the nutritional value at the very least. *sigh* I even said bad words. And now my right eye is twitching…I think it's from the really salty popcorn I bought from the sucky work cafeteria.


Has anybody read Hey Nostradamus by Douglas Coupland? I ask because I read it a couple of weeks ago and it depressed the ever-living shit out of me. Now the back of the book talked about hope, but I missed the whole hope aspect of this book. I'm not saying it was a bad book. In fact, I'd say it was interesting, different and even well written. It's hard to say I loved it when it depressed me so badly, but I did kind of like it. I've lent it to a friend from work and I'm waiting to see what he says.


Okay, sorry, got sidetracked looking at DVDs at I want The Sting on DVD, but the DVD that is out right now has no special features and isn't widescreen. Damn! I guess I'll wait. There are a couple of other movies I want, but I'll wait as has a deal of buy 3 get free shipping, while has spend over $25 and get free shipping. I also want To Catch a Thief and How to Steal a Million, but the latter isn't out yet on DVD (Dec. 7), so I'll be patient and wait and watch all the other DVDs I've bought over the past five months. I also want Major League and it's out, but w/o two other movies that I really want, I guess I can wait. I'm an adult. I don't need instant gratification! Yeah, right. Have you ever seen me buy yarn? I'm pathetic.


Julie sent out the URL for the wedding pics, but since I look like a fat cow, I won't be sharing them with you. Deal with it. Maybe it's a good thing I dropped my lunch on the floor. And I'm really going to go to the farm market today to buy veggies. No, I didn't go yesterday. I know I said I was going to, but somebody was going to come by after work and my excuse was that I didn't know when he'd get there. Of course, it was damn near four hours after I had gotten home, but it's my story and I'm sticking to it, dammit! Stop nagging me!!! ;-) TODAY I SHALL WALK TO THE STORE AND BUY HEALTHY VEGGIES. The problem is that healthy vegetables cost a lot, are a pain to prepare (clean, cut up, steam, etc.) and do not stave off hunger pains, unless you eat ten pounds. I'm telling you, it's a helluva cheaper just to stop eating to lose weight. I know it's not healthier, but it's easier!


I got this incredible bruise on the top of my right foot at the wedding on Saturday night. No, nobody stomped on my foot. I was doing the polka with Brian and saw that Julie was trying to take our picture, so I paused for the shot, but Brian didn't know we were pausing and he kept going and my foot turned sideways and under and damn, it hurt. Not as much as it could have, since I was taking ibuprofen regularly to stave off the pain that wearing heels causes my poor old feet, to say nothing of my stupid arthritic knees. It sucks getting old, kids, although my doctors swear it has nothing to do with age and everything to do with hereditary. Is that supposed to make me feel better? Hmm, does it? Yeah, I guess it does.

Bill Gates is NOT my friend.

I can't believe I didn't tell you all (all one of you that I know about) about the friend I ran into yesterday morning as I left the house at 5:50 a.m. He was black with a white stripe down his back and he was digging in the garbage* right where I was about to throw my bag of garbage. Thankfully (for me and my favorite new Chico's top) I noticed him before I threw a bag of garbage on top of my cute little malodorous friend. We both stopped dead and looked at each other. I freaked out (inside), threw the garbage off to the side of Mr. Black with White Stripe, and then moved swiftly away so as not to threaten him. I have no idea what he did because I wasn't sure if eye contact is a threatening act to a skunk. Nothing quite like an encounter with a skunk prior to 6:00 a.m. to wake your ass right up!

I knew we had skunks in the neighborhood, as I have smelled them a number of times. And it usually smells like the damn thing went off right in my bedroom. It really is a most incredibly horrible stench. And I had seen one last summer, also early in the morning as I was walking down the street, there was one in the garbage pile just down the street. I saw him before I got too close and I backed up and decided that discretion is the better part of valor and I walked in the street.

*Garbage Pick-Up Day is Friday, but for some reason this was the second time this summer that the garbage pick-up men didn't bother with our street, so we went four days looking like white trash which pisses me off. They're lucky it was gone yesterday morning or I was going to call the City and start pitching a fit. And the people in my buildings are so frickin' lazy!!! For a long time, they knew the garbage got picked up but they were too stupid to figure out exactly what day, so they would just put their garbage at the curb whatever day they felt like it. Since I don't want people thinking that white trash live in my buildings (which they do, but not all of us, thank you very much), I made up signs that read: Garbage Pick-Up Day is FRIDAY MORNING, please do not put your garbage out before 5:00 p.m. on Thursday. I gave them to Chris (our Schneider) and he posted them. You'd think that would be pretty explicit and understandable, wouldn't you? Now, if you saw those signs posted at your building, when would you put your garbage out? After 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, you say? Ah, but that's because you're incredibly clever!!! Thursday morning when I leave for work there is inevitably someone who has already put their garbage out! ARGH!!! If you're leaving before 6:00 a.m. on Thursday then you probably leave early enough on Friday to get your garbage out before they pick up around 9:30 a.m. And if you're going away or something, then don't be a complete lame-ass fuck-up, take your garbage over to the Dumpster. Yes, we even have a Dumpster, but they'd have to take more than ten steps to get to it. I'm telling you, LAZY!!!!

* * * * * * * * *

I thought that I'd get on-line last night from home, something I rarely do, as I'm super busy with all my knitting and beading. I've even made myself a rule, no reading at home! No time for reading until after Christmas. Anyway, I had sent out an e-mail to a few people yesterday asking if they were up for going to a Tigers game before the season ends and sent a list of the home games left. I wanted to check if I had any responses, but I couldn't get my computer to connect to the Internet. So, I called Comcast and spent an hour on the phone with a very nice young man who determined that it wasn't Comcast's problem but probably my operating system. Yay. I call Microsoft who wants to help me if I give them my credit card number. Um, I don't think so. Bill Gates already has more money than God and I really hate contributing to his wallet. Their automated voicemail system kindly gave me the number of my computer company (HP), so I called them and after sitting on hold for a while and going through my paperwork, I figure out that my computer is long out of warranty, so I hang up and call my friend Rick who is a computer whiz. My operating system is Windows ME which makes all computer savvy people gasp in dismay. *sigh* Does NOT make a girl with a computer problem feel good, let me tell you. So, Rick has me do the same things as the Comcast guy but he says I'm missing my DNS server information and to call Comcast back, so I do, and the guy tells me I don't need DNS server information, for some reason or other. And he concludes that it's the operating system, after another half hour on the phone. I have the disks that they gave me which supposedly have all the information on them which originally came on my computer. Comcast Guy #2 said to make sure I save my Ethernet information when I'm saving my files, etc., but wasn't really able to tell me where to find that to save it. *double sigh* I then call my friend Julie to get her help as she's a computer whiz and lives in the area. Rick lives in Massachusetts, so his helping abilities are somewhat limited. Well, by this time my cell phone is saying, "Um, girl, you've been on the phone for something like 3 straight hours, so in the middle of this phone call, I'm just going to die on you." And it did. Sometimes I really hate technology!!!! So, now I not only need to figure out what's wrong with my computer because I'm not paying Comcast for cable connectivity if I can't access the Internet, I need to get to Verizon and pick up some sort of power cord that I can use at home on my cell phone and not drain my battery, which will make three different power cord thingies I have for my cell phone. It's better accessorised than I am!

And to complain about Bill Gates a touch longer! I hate that Word changes the spelling of some words automatically. I don't care if it's a typo, change away! But if I want to spell certain words with the English spelling, I should have that ability without having to go back and change the z back to the s that I prefer!