Thursday, October 27, 2005

Sick and tired

I'm officially sick (fever), but it's not officially bronchitis yet. I finally called my doctor and although they really wanted to set up an appt. I said I really just wanted to talk to the doctor. He called me back during his lunchtime and said, "No problem. I'll call a prescription in for you." It really pays to have a regular GP who knows you and your health issues, because he trusts me when I say I'm getting bronchitis, because he's seen me too many times with it. And as he pointed out with my asthma there's no risking lung issues. I told him that I wouldn't take the antibiotic until I got it for certain, but he said No, start it today so that by Sunday when you leave for Mexico, you'll be on the right track. Man, I just love a doctor who treats you like an adult!!!!

Yesterday was the Rollins spoken word concert, so I went home from work and crashed for 2.5 hours. I called Jim to make sure someone else wasn't going (because then I was going to bail) and then got ready. When I got to Jim's house, he essentially told me that I looked like shit and that I should go home. I told him that I was not going to abandon him. He responded, "You're going to Mexico on Sunday. If you weren't, I would totally make you go, but Mexico is too important. Don't forget to buy me a program." LOL!

So, he sent me home and I agreed because I thought Matt was going to go with him, but after I drove off, Matt said he was too tired (he's 27, how damn tired can he be?), so Jim didn't get to see Rollins. I feel horrible that he didn't get to go, but I really wasn't up to it. And usually if I'm up, contacted, make-up-ed and out the door, I'm intent on doing whatever it was, but last night I just couldn't do it.

I'm taking tomorrow off work in order to sleep in and rest and take it easy in order to facilitate the whole being well for the vacation process. And that probably means that this will be my last post until Nov. 9. Sad, but true. Sad, because it's such an incredibly lame post, but my brain is overheated and doesn't feel like thinking.

Happy Halloween, everybody!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Immortality: Blessing or Curse?

I've been watching my DVD boxset of Highlander: The Series (instead of Netflix movies which is why I haven't shared with you any of my scintillating and biting reviews lately) and although the show has its light-hearted moments and its violence (cutting heads off and all), it has made me think about immortality and its advantages and disadvantages. In a serious kind of way…

For those completely unfamiliar with the show (or movie with Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery), I'll give you a little background. The concept is that there are Immortals among us and they can not die unless you take their head – usually another Immortal as part of The Gathering where they fight because "In the end, there can be only One." And supposedly that One could then rule the Earth, if they so chose. So, Immortals walk the earth and look like normal people except that occasionally they fight each other with swords and the winner gets to take his/her opponent's head. Gruesome though but they obviously never show that.

When I watch the show and they do the flashbacks to earlier times in MacLeod's life it seems really cool to have lived through different times and to have seen all the things he is supposed to have seen, but there are the drawbacks which make me think that living forever is not all it's cracked up to be.

Oh yeah, if you've never seen the show and are thinking that it sounds interesting, I'm warning you that there are major SPOILERS ahead.

One thing I always think about is Richie. Richie is this young man who in the first episode tries to rob MacLeod's antique store. There is some way to tell if a person is destined to be an immortal (but they don't share this secret with us), therefore MacLeod recognises this trait in Richie and he doesn't press charges and takes him under his wing to await the day that Richie dies for the first time, when MacLeod will become Richie's teacher. Richie is around 19 years old, let's say. He is killed by a drugged out mugger in Season Two, along with the love of MacLeod's 20th century life. He now has this ability to live forever and see the changes that will happen over the next hundreds of years – providing he is able to win sword fights against other Immortals when challenged. When you take a fellow Immortal's head, you receive all his/her power through The Quickening (which takes the form of lightning usually). Something in Season Six causes MacLeod to hallucinate and he ends up killing Richie, accidentally. I remember this pissed off my other friends who were Highlander fans. I think they even stopped watching. That's not my point though.

I always think that it's so sad that in theory Richie has all the time in the world to explore said world, but then his life is cut down a mere 3-4 years after he becomes an Immortal. Is that a correct use of "ironic" a la Alanis Morissette? I wonder what his life would have been like if he hadn't found MacLeod or vice versa. Of course, the producers of the show had Richie as a common thief and unlikely to change w/o MacLeod's influence, so he would have been either a petty criminal, in prison or dead – I guess to make us feel better about his death. But to have MacLeod be the one??? Dear heavens! How tortured do you want to make your lead character? And how upset do you want your fans?

Other episodes that made me think that perhaps being Immortal is not all that and a bag of chips were Courage and Rite of Passage, both from Season Three. In Courage, Richie runs into an old friend of Duncan's at Joe's Bar. Old Friend is Cullen and is drunk off his ass and he proceeds to fall on it and blames Richie. Richie reminds Cullen that they are in public when Cullen challenges him and then walks away. Cullen is tired of killing, and not just Immortals, since centuries back he was The Best Swordfighter in Europe and just like Gene Wilder in Blazing Saddles was tired of killing every Tom, Dick and Harry who would challenge him to a duel. He has developed a drug and alcohol habit which become his Dutch courage. MacLeod tries to reason with Cullen about his habits and how when he drinks and does drugs and then drives he kills mortals (he had crashed his car into a bus while chasing Richie down a mountain road). In the end, the drugs make him so paranoid that he thinks Duncan is trying to kill him and Duncan ends up having to kill his old friend in order to save his own life.

It was like another episode Studies in Light from Season Two (before Richie became Immortal) in which we encounter an Immortal, Gregor, who was tired of living, but instead of drinking too much or taking illicit drugs, he was an adrenaline junkie who would get mortals to do incredibly dangerous stunts which could kill them in order to find out from them how it felt to almost die. Gregor got Richie to attempt a motorcycle trick and Richie ended up hurt. This didn't make Duncan all that happy and even though he had known Gregor for centuries and had known him as a doctor who cared deeply for his patients, MacLeod challenged Gregor which was what he wanted. When it came time for the final, fatal blow Gregor came to the realization that he didn't want to die after all.

I know I haven't discussed Rite of Passage yet, but I'll get there.

Both Courage and Studies in Light explored the downsides of living forever (or however long forever turns out to be with people trying to cut off your head) by examining the unconscious mind, and how different personalities/people deal with adversity differently. Cullen hid behind drugs and alcohol because he knew it would never kill him, so why not escape the hell he was living when he could? Gregor knew that no matter what dangerous thing he did, he wasn't going to die and it had reached a point where he felt suffocated by his own immortality. He had lost the ability to feel, to empathise, to sympathise, and he was trying to get it back by having others tell him their feelings, thoughts and emotions when they were close to death. He needed to lose that battle to MacLeod and come *this* close to losing his head to understand and regain his desire to live.

In Rite of Passage, the 18-year-old daughter, Michelle, of a mortal friend of Duncan's dies in a car accident after leaving the house in a typical teenaged snit. The friends are distraught and feel responsible for their daughter's death because they had argued right before she went off in the car. MacLeod is with the family, of course, when she drives off and when they are in hospital and get the news that she died. MacLeod knows, of course, that Michelle was an Immortal waiting to happen, so he breaks her out of the morgue – which makes for a fun time for the hospital to explain that they lost the body. Michelle doesn't understand all the ramifications of being an Immortal and only thinks that now she can party like it's 1999 all the time. She attends her own funeral (which was attended by only her parents and Duncan – which seemed a tad strange to me) and she comes to the realisation that she had treated her parents badly, etc.

When Richie died he was already on his own and had been a foster child so nobody was looking for him and nobody knew he had died other than MacLeod, so there wasn't a problem of him having to go away or having parents mourning for him.

Would I want to live forever? I just don't know. I'm sure it would be nice never to get sick or to be able to walk up stairs without my knees hurting or to sit on the floor cross-legged and still be able to stand up and walk without hobbling, but is it worth it having to leave your family and then watch them die from afar (I haven't seen an episode where an Immortal was created by dying of old age – maybe you have to die a violent death or at least an early death, as one's first death came about because of the Plague)? Or actually kill somebody by beheading them? They make MacLeod's life seem so fabulous. He has plenty of money (made God only knows where as that's never really discussed, although I think we're supposed to assume he made very savvy business decisions his whole life and invested well), good friends, two homes (one in Seacouver, Washington and one in a barge on the Seine in Paris) between which he travels regularly. He has beautiful women falling at his feet (he is pretty bloody hot, I have to say), but he's lost mortal after mortal lover and never married. Immortals can not have children which is a source of sadness for many of them. If you find a mortal to love, they will eventually grow old and how do you stay in one place where people might realise that you look the same as you did when you bought that house 20 years ago? Immortals constantly need to move around and re-invent themselves. Then there's that pesky problem of never knowing when another Immortal is going to pop up and want to fight you and if they win, they'll take your head, and if you win, you have to kill them. Is it easier to kill knowing that if you don't kill that person they're going to kill you? Or at some point do you give up and let someone take your head because it all becomes too much – like Cullen or Gregor?

Have any of you ever lifted a real sword? Those fuckers are bloody heavy. I could barely lift it, much less swing it around and honestly fight somebody and have a hope in hell of winning.

And less weighty questions: Do Immortals celebrate their birthdays every year? Or do you get tired of it after the first 100 years? Do you get tired of seeing the same face in the mirror every day?

Not all of the episodes are so heavy. The ones with Roger Daltrey are usually quite light-hearted and great fun. Episodes like Courage, Studies in Light and Right of Passage are very much worth watching as well. They just evoke different emotions and thoughts.

I guess it doesn't really matter since there aren't Immortals among us beheading each other. I just know that when I get to Season Six and Duncan kills Richie that I will be a girl and cry for a TV character who is killed. And it'll still piss me off that they felt the need to do that.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

AFI Top 100 Movies

AFI's top movies

Julieu listed AFI's Top 100 Movies and bolded the ones she has seen. I figured it was a pretty good idea, so I'm totally stealing the idea from her.

The Complete List:

1. CITIZEN KANE (1941)
2. CASABLANCA (1942)
6. THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939)
7. THE GRADUATE (1967)
10. SINGIN' IN THE RAIN (1952)
11. IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946) I am not a fan of this movie, however.
14. SOME LIKE IT HOT (1959)
15. STAR WARS (1977)
16. ALL ABOUT EVE (1950)
18. PSYCHO (1960)
19. CHINATOWN (1974)
22. 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (1968)
24. RAGING BULL (1980)
26. DR. STRANGELOVE (1964)
31. ANNIE HALL (1977)
33. HIGH NOON (1952)
41. WEST SIDE STORY (1961)
42. REAR WINDOW (1954)
43. KING KONG (1933)
46. A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (1971) (I've seen parts of it and they were enough to convince me that I don't really need to see this movie.)
47. TAXI DRIVER (1976)
48. JAWS (1975)
53. AMADEUS (1984)
56. M*A*S*H (1970)
57. THE THIRD MAN (1949)
58. FANTASIA (1940)
61. VERTIGO (1958)
62. TOOTSIE (1982)
63. STAGECOACH (1939)
66. NETWORK (1976)
69. SHANE (1953)
71. FORREST GUMP (1994)
72. BEN-HUR (1959)
74. THE GOLD RUSH (1925)
76. CITY LIGHTS (1931)
78. ROCKY (1976) (Although I like to pretend I've never seen it.)
79. THE DEER HUNTER (1978)
80. THE WILD BUNCH (1969)
81. MODERN TIMES (1936)
82. GIANT (1956)
83. PLATOON (1986)
84. FARGO (1996)
85. DUCK SOUP (1933)
88. EASY RIDER (1969)
89. PATTON (1970)
90. THE JAZZ SINGER (1927)
91. MY FAIR LADY (1964)
92. A PLACE IN THE SUN (1951)
93. THE APARTMENT (1960)
94. GOODFELLAS (1990)
95. PULP FICTION (1994)
96. THE SEARCHERS (1956)
98. UNFORGIVEN (1992)

I think I need to work on the others, but some of them I simply have zero interest in seeing them, like any sort of mob movie, i.e., The Godfather movies or Goodfellas, or anything with John Wayne in it. I've seen The Quiet Man and that is the extent of my John Wayne movies. I know people who love him absolutely love him, but I've seen bits and pieces of Rooster Cogburn and others and he's no Clint Eastwood. ;-)

Monday, October 24, 2005


Well, the karma bug is getting ready to bite me in my Texas-sized ass. I'm feeling not quite fabulously – in fact, a whole lot less than fabulously – to the point where I am oh so certain that I'm fighting the bronchitis bug. Now, normally, although I don't love bronchitis, it wouldn't be that big of a deal, except that I leave Sunday for Mexico. And that's where Karma is coming in to play. She's pissed that I've been bitching about having to share my vacation with my Mom (who is spending today in airplanes and airports coming home from a long weekend in LA – for all those people who think that Mom needs a break/vacation, etc. She doesn't. She spent Labor Day weekend and week in LA, as well.), so she's decided (that's Karma who has decided, not Mom) that I need to get bronchitis. Now, if I get it today or tomorrow, I'll be relatively happy because I can get to the doctor and get my antibiotics, but I have a sneaking suspicion that ol' Karma's going to lay off on full-blown bronchitis until Sunday morning.

Now, in my defense, I can't imagine there are too many people in the known universe who would voluntarily plan a ten-day vacation with their mother to a foreign country and look forward to it. And if you are one of those few people – I don't really want to hear about it because that would just make me feel like even less of a good daughter than I already do. I'm Catholic, I can do guilt without help, thank you very much!

Shit, I know my Mom would HATE going on vacation with her Mom, whereas I'd prefer going on vacation with Grandma – at least, in theory.

It's a really really really good thing I got the rosary done for the Quinceañera on Saturday because the Flake who made such a big deal about wanting to buy a rosary for the Quinceañera (the word is the same for the event and the girl) never even showed up or called or anything. And her name got in the program. Not that I'm bitter, but the poor mother said she had worried over that and in the end went with Flake's name (which is actually fine, except that she's such a bloody freak – The Flake – not the mother). Example: On my mom's b-day, Flake came up to Mom and said, "My b-day is in December. What are you going to get me?" My Mom was taken aback and said, "Well, today's my b-day, what did you get me?" not really expecting anything, of course. "Nothing, but since my b-day is in December, you can just combine my Christmas and Birthday gift into one." And she's serious! This is a 30-year-old woman, not a four-year-old.

The Quinceañera did not go off without a hitch. It started an hour late and there was complete panic because the person making the dress had fallen asleep the night before and spent the day finishing up the dress and then when she got there (almost an hour late), she was very upset because she was late and didn't get everything done. I had to go to the car and tell her that nobody was upset with her and that there hasn't been a Quinceañera in the world that started on time and it was no big deal. Turns out that she was sicker than a dog, but we got her into the church and the mother of the Quinceañera went over and gave her a hug and was just glad to see her – as was the girl herself because she hated the substitute dress. In the end it was all good and I got thanked for my rosary as I stepped into the fray (as it were) and presented it at the Mass.

I made three more rosaries this weekend (rosaries that were supposed to have been Christmas presents last year), so I feel I got some stuff accomplished. I need to get back to the knitting though as I know that Dec. 3 (or 10th) will be here before we know it! And I want to have a lot to sell at the craft show (although God only knows how many people will be there to buy stuff). Ah well, if people need handknitted Christmas presents this year, I might have some to sell. They're very pretty – if I do say so myself!

Time to go home…so, should I go to the gym when I feel like I'm fighting bronchitis or do I stay home and rest? Bearing in mind that Mexico is calling my name come Sunday!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Beading and Tipping your Waiter/Waitress!

I got the rosary done! And also made a pair of earrings and a bracelet. I worked on a necklace but need to make a couple of adjustments still. Obviously, the rosary got me into a beading mood. And I want to make two more rosaries before Sunday so that Fr. O can bless them before I take them to my aunt and uncle next Saturday. I know I should be knitting for the craft show, but I think I needed a break. My right wrist has been bothering me this week (no clue what carpal tunnel feels like), so I figured a rest was in order.

I'd take a picture and post it but the work camera has been gone all week. I need to harass the last person who signed it out and see if we're ever getting it back.

I'm getting my hair cut today! I'm getting my hair cut today! I'm getting my hair cut today!!! Yes, I'm excited! I hate it when it starts to cover my ears because then it flips up when I put on my glasses or sunglasses. It annoys me no end!! And it's probably just me but I just think that I look better when my hair is short. I know that when the YS tells me "Your hair is looking good." I'm thinking it looks terrible and I'm generally hating it. Or she'll tell me right after I get a hair cut, "I knew you were going to get it cut, because I was beginning to like it." Whatever. She doesn't wear her hair to suit me and I don't wear mine to suit her.

Whew! I found someone to go to the symphony with me tonight. The fabulous Miss Sandie expressed an interest earlier this week in going to the symphony, so when I found myself in need of someone to use my extra ticket, I e-mailed her and she jumped at the chance. Yay!!! She's promised not to wear her Grave Digger t-shirt and combat boots, so you know that made me happy! I had contemplated just finding two people to use the tickets, but I told myself NO! This is a concert I really want to hear! The DSO is going to play Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto #2 and Tchaikowsky's Symphony #5. I love Tchaikowsky in all his forms, so I would hate to miss anything of his!!!

I just got done reading a whole bunch of blogs linked by Waiter Rant, and I feel the need to defend myself which is completely ridiculous, but I'm annoyed.

For some reason, I'm stereotyped as a bad tipper automatically because I'm a single woman in my 40s. And to top it off, I order water (sometimes with lemon) to drink instead of pop or something alcoholic or as an after dinner coffee substitute – herbal tea. I could have left comments at the various sites, but just didn't feel the need. So, I'm going to inflict this on you, my faithful readers.

1) I order water because I don't generally drink pop because most restaurants only carry Pepsi/Coke, Diet Whatever, or Sprite/7-Up. I don't do caffeine and I don't like Sprite/7-Up. And I would love to order a beer, but if I'm driving I think that's considered to be slightly bad form these days. If someone else is driving? I'm all over that adult beverage, thank you very much! I don't even drink pop at home.

2) When in a bar, I tip $1 a drink – be it water, beer or mixed drink.

3) Another point the servers like to bitch about is people who don't order drinks, appetizers and desserts – entrees only. This is supposedly another indication of people who don't know how to tip and never eat out. It could be because the people are in a hurry to get to a concert or movie or just aren't that hungry or they have a budget and want to make sure they have enough money left to give you a decent tip.

4) I rarely leave 15% as a tip, preferring to tip closer to 20% and I absolutely hate splitting the bill with a bunch of people where somebody doesn't leave enough so then everybody is throwing in enough to make sure there's enough tip. That's one thing about my friends, we know how hard it is to wait tables (even though I think only of us has done it) and we don't want to stiff the server, so people are always digging in their pockets and purses saying, "Do we have enough?" "Do we need more?"

And I firmly believe that sometimes a restaurant that automatically includes a gratuity of 18% for groups over 8 is screwing the server because some people would have left more – although I totally agree with the person who just thought, "but they could give more, if they wanted to." And then there's the flip side when that automatic 18% is necessary because of all the cheap asses who are out there.

I have never waited tables and I know I never could without "accidentally, on purpose" spilling something on an asshole who so richly deserved it or getting high blood pressure. As such, I try to follow the golden rule and treat any waitstaff/server as I would want to be treated. And I actually think that there are probably more people like me out there than the shitheads, but it's hard to bitch about a table that treated you well and tipped fairly, but not spectacularly. And I'm not complaining about the bitching, because I like reading about it and I also feel they have the right to bitch and if I were in their shoes I would be bitching like there is no tomorrow and I welcome their posts. So, bitch away, but really, I think generalizations are not cool.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

No Rollins For Me

My friend Jim is officially a Goofball! Turns out that Rollins wasn't in AA last night – he's going to be there next Wednesday. Of course, we did not discover this until we got to AA. We drive past the Michigan Theatre where he "was supposed to perform" and I look at the marquee and it had some weirdass combination of words which included Thumbsucker. I looked at Jim and asked, "Is that the name of Rollins' tour?" "Um, no." As we turn into the parking garage he asks, "What's today's date?" I look at my watch and say, "The 19th." "Hmmm, why is the 26th so prominently in my head?" I laughed outright at this point. We find a parking spot and walk to the Theatre and there's nothing at all to indicate that Rollins is playing there. In fact, there are damn near no people around. I’m just laughing at this point, and he says to me, "What are you doing next Wednesday?" "Going to see Rollins?"

We decide to get some dinner since neither of us had eaten. After an acceptable meal at the Old Town Pub we walked back to the car and Jim says, "I have no idea where the car is." I told him not to worry because I knew where the car was. He said, "I was too worried trying to figure out how I was going to tell you that you weren't seeing Rollins tonight to remember where the car is." I laughed at him again and said, "I had already figured that out." The second we went past the Michigan Theatre and there was no line and Rollins name was not on the marquee, I figured it out. It was a fun evening, though. And even better? I got to bed much earlier than I had figured and was still able to sleep after taking a damn near two hour nap in the afternoon. I was OUT! I was so damn tired.

My plans for today were to sit on the couch (after work, obviously) and make the rosary that I need to make by Saturday, but I might have to drive to Westland to get my hair cut. It's so desperately long and I'm HATING it!!! I had asked the ever lovely Ursamajor if she wanted to go for Indian food, but she has food poisoning, and although it bums me out, it's probably for the best. I really need to get the rosary done. One of the other women at church wanted to buy a rosary for the Quinceañera, and got all bent out of shape when I said I wanted to make one. I simply stepped back and said the other woman could do it and she could present it at the ceremony. I would give mine to Kianca separately so as not to piss of the first woman who's a bit sensitive. Well, I just talked to my mom and she said the woman said she's not even planning on going to the ceremony, so I think it's even more important now that I get the rosary made. Some people's feelings get hurt way too easily. I think that I'm a bit of a pansy-ass that way (ultra-sensitive), but shit, I'm a rock compared to Rosary Woman.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The Reality of Soap Operas, Busy Week and Babysitting (more detail than you could possibly want)

I have figured out the problem with soap operas in relation to real life. Monday at the gym the only elliptical available was the machine in front of the Channel 7 TV, so occasionally I would look up and see what was going on (I much prefer the ESPN TVs). There was this one chick (her name was Courtney) on General Hospital who should have had a revolving door installed on her apartment. In one scene, she's sitting on the couch with her soon-to-be-ex-husband (apparently they had been married a VERY short time – weeks, perhaps?) discussing what to do with the wedding gifts and Thank You notes which hadn't been written. The next scene some new guy knocks on her door and gets all jealous because her still husband is there. Guy #2 had come from another woman's apartment (Emily, I believe). Soon-to-be-ex-husband goes from Courtney's apartment to Emily's apartment to discuss Elizabeth (for what reason I couldn't figure out). Next time we see Courtney's apt. (same evening), there is another friggin' knock on the door and this time it's Elizabeth who is engaged to Guy #2's brother. And then we see Guy #2 in a garden or something and his brother comes out and gives him a hard time about wanting to be alone. After that I have no clue because my hour was up and I had things to do. My point of contention is that I don't get three people knocking unexpectedly on my door three times in one month, much less one evening with all the accompanying drama of being pregnant by someone (by God only knows whom) and not being able to tell soon-to-be-ex-husband because it might not be his! It's no wonder they can do a TV show about these peoples' lives because there's always something happening to someone. It's complete craziness. The other storyline had someone's brother trying to kill someone else's son and it was all just simply insane…to say nothing of being beyond believable.

I do not understand why people watch this stuff. I just hope the ESPN machines are available today. I don't think I could stand more of that drivel.

It seems to me that just last weekend (Sept. 30-Oct. 2) I had only a hockey game planned for this week, but now my entire week is completely booked with events that take me out of my apt. way past my desired bed time of 9:30 p.m. Monday night was the hockey game and it was definitely worth staying up! The Wings won in OT with 50.9 seconds remaining before heading to the Wings' first Shoot Out of the season – something I did NOT want to see. I realise that I'm in the minority on this, but I'm not a fan of the shoot-out. AT. ALL. And I was dreading it, so I was very very happy when Jiri Fischer scored the game winner – not that the Wings deserved to win as they played like complete shite, while the Sharks skated their fool heads off. But I'll take the win, because I know there will be days when their passing is crisp and their skating brilliant and they'll manage to lose, so I'll take the ugly win!

Last night I ended up babysitting for the Terror Children so BAB and SIL could go to some Christian "rock" concert at one of the local Mega-Churches. They didn't get home until after 10:30 and I didn't get home until close to 11:30 and I was actually on time for work today (unlike yesterday when I just couldn't get out of bed). And tonight I'm off to see Rollins' Spoken Word concert out in AA with my friend Jim. I’m sure it'll be another very late night. Tomorrow is my only free day and we all know that Thursday is usually Happy Hour Night with Martha. I'm going to beg off this week though. I have to sleep and more importantly, I have a rosary to make by Saturday for a Quinceañera at church. And then Friday is my second DSO concert of the season. It's all good stuff, but couldn't some of it happen next week??? I'm so tired and it's only 9:05 a.m. on Wednesday!!!

The Terror Children lived up to their names. They're such angels, IMHO, when their parents are home (who yell at them constantly and threaten punishment for the minorest of infractions), but the second the "adults" leave, the two boys go into complete terror, PITA mode. They start yelling and then jumping on me and telling me that they hate me. I live alone with two cats, the nonstop yelling would be enough to put me over the edge. We (read: the Terror Children) expended some of their extremely excess energy outside riding their bikes, but then the second we walked in the door…actually I wasn't even in the door yet as I was waiting for older sister, the youngest TC (YTC) hit the middle TC (MTC) and the MTC responded by KICKING YTC in the chest which, of course, caused the YTC to cry at top volume.

I told MTC to go upstairs and get his PJs on immediately. "No, I don't want to." I told him that if I were lucky enough to be at home, I'd have MY PJs on. I also told YTC that if he hits someone, he can pretty much expect to be hit in return – I think I called it an equal and positive reaction. Hey, the brain doesn't work when it's surrounded by three children under the age of 8! I go into shutdown mode and thank the merciful Lord that I have no children. Anyway, I got all three kids into pajamas by saying there would be no DVD or treat. I love threats and bribes!!!

SIL had set out two packets of microwave popcorn for the kids' treat (when I was a kid it was called dessert, but these days everything is a "treat"), so while the kids watched Schoolhouse Rock (the American History portion – which other than I’m just a bill is just not that intriguing), I popped popcorn in the microwave. This is something I NEVER do as I don't like microwaved popcorn. I don't think I need the additional chemicals and whathaveyou and besides it's not like it takes that long to pop popcorn the old-fashioned way with oil and a saucepan. This is all a precursor to the fact that I burnt the first bag of bloody popcorn – it said 4 minutes and before that four minutes was up, it was quite obvious it was burnt. *sigh* Thankfully SIL had left two packages out. I put the second one in and stood there and waited for it to stop its popping. The kids got the good popcorn while ol' Aunt Kat got the burnt popcorn. As a punishment for kicking his little brother, though, I made MTC eat one kernel of not really that burnt popcorn. Yeah, I'm not a softy, I couldn't deny the kid a little popcorn.

OH YEAH! Another event of the evening while trying to get said Terror Children into their pajamas MTC started crawling on me which of course made YTC also crawl on me. YTC did so by standing on the backs of my calves (I was kneeling down at the time). MTC lost his balance and bumped YTC who proceeded to fall and smack the every living crap out of his noggin' on the dresser. Oh, the crying and screaming – not that I blame him – he hit that fucker HARD! MTC is freaking out saying, "I'm sorry, YTC. I'm sorry." I finally told MTC that he didn't have to apologise because he didn't do it on purpose, but I would like to hear him apologise for kicking YTC earlier. Another abject apology, "I'm sorry, YTC." "You're forgiven, MTC." I mean, really, what four year old says, "You're forgiven."

I get MTC and YTC calmed down when the OTC (Not over the counter, but Oldest TC) shows up and she's crying. I'm bewildered as I had no clue why she was crying. I hugged her and asked why she was crying, "I hate it when YTC is hurt." I reassured her that there was no lasting damage to YTC and got them situated in the living room so I could burn the damn popcorn.

After watching Schoolhouse Rock and Thomas the Tank, I told the darlings that it was time for bed. They are not allowed to brush their teeth all at the same time – one kid at a time, even though there were two sinks. I finally get them in bed and I go down and decide to watch Winged Migration. Not even 30 seconds later I hear, "Aunt Kat!" at full volume. *sigh* I pause the movie and head upstairs where MTC informs me that YTC needs me. YTC's tummy hurts which is his way of saying he's having trouble breathing. We traipse downstairs for a breathing treatment which takes FOREVER. 30 minutes later I have him back in bed and I start the movie again. 90 seconds later I hear my name being bellowed yet another time. I pause the movie, head back upstairs to referee the very important discussion about whether or not penguins fly.

AK: "No, YTC, penguins don't fly. They walk and they swim."
YTC: "But I've seen them fly."
AK: "No, you probably saw them diving off cliffs into the water, and it might have looked like flying, but no, penguins can't fly. They're a flightless bird along with ostriches and emus."
MTC: "What about flamingoes? They don't fly, do they? And peacocks."
AK: Flamingoes and peacocks do fly. The only flightless bird…
MTC: But Mom said Flamingoes and peacocks don't fly. An I've never seen them fly.
AK: *heavy sigh* Okay, it's time to sleep.

But the kids are wound up and they start yelling and being generally annoying. I told them that I did not want to hear another word out of them again or I was going to turn out the nightlight. Yes, mean Aunt Kat threatened the nightlight's existence. YTC immediately freaked out, "NO!" I said, "Okay then, I don't want to have to come back up here."

Back to the movie, and I actually get to watch maybe five minutes when I look up and there's YTC. "My wrist hurts." ARGH!!!! There are two tiny little bumps on his wrist but they are apparently quite painful (yeah, right). *sigh* Back upstairs so YTC can show me where his Mom keeps the creams/ointments. He says that she uses the "wrinkly" one which is a prescription only tube and I can't figure out what it's for. Needless to say I didn't use that one. I told him that he could have the Cortaid (OTC) or nothing. I put the smallest amount of Cortaid on his little wrist and tuck him back into bed. And finally, we were done.

And I didn't get to finish the movie because BAB and SIL came home before it ended. DANG IT! I gave a sterilised version of the evening (I said MTC smacked YTC back – although I know the dumbshit is going to tell on himself and it's going to come out that there was a shod foot involved), mentioned the bump on the head and the various trips up and down the stairs. My goal in babysitting is to make sure the kids don't get spanked the next day.

And after sitting at my desk all day trying desperately not to fall asleep, I have decided to blow off the gym and have a nap tonight before I go and see Rollins. It would be exceptionally bad form to fall asleep on him…it might be a fantasy as well. ;-)

And if any of you lasted the entire way through that excruciatingly detailed account of my babysitting evening, I commend you! Or your job is beyond boring!!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Kathleen Needs...

In an effort to post something, here is something everybody else has already done. I put my name and the word needs into Google and this is what popped up...I edited them, but there are still more than five here...along with my very inciteful and humorous commentary.

Kathleen needs to come back.

Kathleen needs help at work and family...

Kathleen needs help with Food, T-Shirts and Sponsors.

Kathleen needs a liaison between Conor O'Neill’s and the vendors.

Sweet Kathleen needs your name, address & phone number... (Who am I to argue against the "sweet" appellation?)

Kathleen NEEDS A NEW POWERCHAIR and that is what I ask for! ... I trust in Your provision for Kathleen's needs and that You will touch her body. (Well then!)

... Without meaning to sound rude, I think Kathleen needs to chill out. (From "sweet" to needing to "chill out" in two easy steps.)

Kathleen needs to learn ... (I need to learn what? How can I learn if they don’t give me details?)

Kathleen needs to make sure she stays away from Civil War era parks. (I agree with this. I don't have a whole lot of interest in the Civil War – hell, make that any war.)

... event enabled Mike to put an addition on the house -- it's almost completed – so that there's well-designed space to accommodate Kathleen's needs and do. (I'm thinking this has something to do with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.)

Mary has something that Kathleen needs, such the ability to hire or fire Kathleen. Kathleen is willing to bargain her time and effort in her job in order to ... (I don't know, but I'm pretty sure I don't need to be fired!!!)

Kathleen NEEDS Atheists to be perceived as evil and inferior otherwise people might think we are. EQUAL? (This had a title of Crazy Atheist Libertarian which made me laugh.)

Tornadoes: Reason Number Two that Kathleen needs to leave Tennessee. (Where am I going to go? Somewhere where there's hurricanes or earthquakes?)

Kathleen needs to talk to people she trusts for reassurance that things will turn out great on the day. So far she's been a whirlwind of activity, ... (This week in particular I'm going to be a whirlwind of activity...more in another post.)

"When Kathleen needs help from Washington insiders, she has not one, but two Senators as near as her telephone. ... (Yeah, that's right. I'm well-connected in Washington. You just let me know…)

Kathleen needs to have more fun? (No shit, Sherlock.)

Thursday, October 13, 2005

I love the 80s!!!!! (So exciting - 2 posts in one day!)

The Gardening Knitter informed her readers today (well, I read it today) that the 80s fashion trends are apparently coming back. Some of those fashion trends were a tad scary – remember large shoulder pads, wide belts over long tunic-y tops and skin-tight jeans? I was skinny enough back then that the skin-tight jeans weren't really a problem, but I do remember laying (lying?) on the bed and sucking my already flat stomach in in order to get those suckers zipped. Breathing was not an option!

I even had the two-tone jeans. Front of the pants were a grey acid-washed denim while the back were the blue acid-washed denim. Ah, memories. They were so cool! My favorite pair though was this pair I got at The Gap at Wonderland Mall (RIP Wonderland! Damn you, Wal-Mart) on the sale rack for something like $6. They were very tapered and I wore them with little pixie boots (grey suede) and I had them for years! I wore natural holes into the knees and remember getting quite upset the first time the worn faded oh so soft denim split. I was at the library (I worked at the library while at University) and had knelt down to get some books off the bottom rack of the book carts and all of a sudden my lily-white right knee was exposed. I nearly cried because I loved them so much. The good news was that it was right around the time that the ripped up jeans look was so "in," so I was right there! Usually I'm behind the fashion trends, but not then, oh no! I was at the forefront of the ripped up jeans, aren't I cool look!

And I wore those jeans for probably another two years (the left knee wore its own hole within a month of the right knee) and it didn't matter if it were the dead of winter or not, I wore those jeans with my vintage homeless lady wool coat (it was very damn thin, I will admit now, but at the time, I was very into my vintage look – rhinestones with jeans, old brooches on homeless lady coat, bowl cut hair with the sides and back shaved). When I started working at the Social Sciences Department as the student assistant in my last year I was known for wearing three different earrings – all dangling, all long, all silver (two in my right, one in my left) – and my ear band and my holey jeans. I had a wide black one which was the best since I was in my punk phase. The only time I wore a matching pair of earrings (one in the right ear and one in the left) was when I wore my chains. I still miss those, but I lost one one night when dancing.

And for a number of years every article of clothing in my wardrobe was black. One of my friends took to greeting me thusly, "I see you are wearing black today." And to this day, he'll greet me with this even though I'm so rarely wearing all black anymore. We will not discuss what I'm wearing today…but it might be all black.

I also wore rings on every finger (including thumbs). My younger cousins used to count them all the time and at one time I would wear something like 28 rings. Up until a couple of years ago I still wore a ring on every finger (the thumb rings got bent out of shape at my job in SF when the mailroom shelf doo-hickey thingy fell on my hand – thank God I was wearing those rings or I might have had a crushed thumb or two). I had progressed to having an opal ring for every finger (it had been a goal of mine), but then I got tired of the time it took to dry my hands every time I would go to the bathroom. I now wear one ring per hand and they're on my middle fingers, not my ring fingers – I gotta stay different somehow!

I'm so boring these days that I have color in my wardrobe, wear only matching earrings with my polar bear stud in the right ear (always). I have not given up my ear band and hope I never do. My present one I got in Egypt which means I've been wearing this one for ten years! Holy crap! Now that I mentioned that I'll probably lose the damn thing. DAMN IT!

Now when I thought about writing a post about the 80s, I was thinking mainly of the music. When I lived in SF, once a month there would be a dance party held at a local warehouse (essentially) called New Wave City. Now to me the title was self-explanatory, but when I invited people to go one Saturday, they asked me what kind of music it was. "Um, New Wave? You know, music from the late 70s and 80s." They were up for that, so we had a group meeting there. The one girl, in particular, of whom I'm thinking, got there and after a short while came up to me where I was dancing away on the dance floor (destroying my knees for later in life) to tell me that they were leaving (really no skin off my nose as I prefer to dance alone anyway) because the music wasn't what they were expecting. I was a little surprised as they were playing New Wave (The Smiths, New Order, Joy Division, Sex Pistols – yeah, I know it's punk, Iggy Pop, NIN, Echo and the Bunnymen, Style Council, The Jam, Japan, Sisters of Mercy, Siouxsie and The Banshees, etc.). To me that is 80s music. That's what I was listening to the 80s, but it's not apparently what everybody else was listening to. ;-) This girl was expecting Prince and stuff like that.

When people say 80s music, what do you think of? And for that matter, when people say 80s fashions what's your first though?


I did not want to get out of bed this morning – not that I want to get out of bed most mornings, but this morning I almost didn't get out of bed. I even went to bed by 9:30 (a reasonable bedtime when your alarm goes off at 4:12 a.m.), but I was completely unable to drag my sorry butt out from under my toasty covers until 5:26. My right knee has been bothering me for a couple of months now and I’m just damn tired of it hurting all the friggin' time. And be very thankful you don't have to follow me up a flight of steps. I take them quite slowly and moan and groan at every step. It's quite a pathetic performance.

When my knee first started bothering me I asked YS to look at it. If you have a doctorate in Physical Therapy in the family you might as well get something out of it, right? Anyway, she informed me that my left leg was longer than my right leg and that I should see my orthotist and let him know. I finally did that and I saw him last night (if you live in the Detroit area and need an orthotist, I highly recommend Wolverine Orthotics in Novi) and told him what YS told me to. He proceeded to run a series of tests and said, "I hate it when your sister is right, but she's right. Your left leg is longer than your right." *sigh* Turns out that it's a whopping 3/8" longer than the right. And although you might not think of 3/8ths of an inch as whopping, apparently it is when it comes to leg lengths. Well, will I stop finding malfunctioning body parts that make me feel even older than I am??? This could, possibly, be partially responsible for the right knee hurting. *sigh* *sigh*

Even now I could easily go back to sleep, it's a grey, dismal day – you know, the kind of day that screams at you to stay in bed, or sit by the fireplace (if you have a fireplace, if not, huddle under blankies) and watch TV or read a book. It is not a day that is conducive to working. Hmmm, are there any days that are really conducive to working? I know that we all (except for Paris Hilton, whom I just found out is unengaged from the Greek Paris) have to work, so I guess every day is essentially conducive to working. It's that damn paycheck. Why can't we all be fabulously wealthy so that we can do good throughout the world and give more to help all the natural disaster victims? Not that I have that much but I gave more money today – this time to UNICEF for the victims of Hurricane Stan. I picked that disaster because it's getting NO coverage whatsoever, so nobody is giving money to help those poor people.

Bloody hell, you'd think I was PMSing here. I feel like I'm going to cry and there's just no reason! I hate that! I think I must be more tired than I originally thought. I just don't know why I'm so exhausted. I am getting a little nervous about my passport. I sent it in for renewal back on Sept. 6. And yes, I realise it's only been 4 weeks and two days, but I need it NOW! Okay, I don't need it now, but I'm getting anxious and I'd feel a lot better if I HAD it now. I leave in two weeks and four days for Mexico and for me, that's getting anxious time.

Yes, I know I probably should have sent it in sooner, but there had been the possibility that I was going to go to Montreal at the end of August for the race, so I didn't want to send it in before that. *sigh*

The good news is that Martha has plans for dinner tonight, so we're not going out for drinks which is good news because that means I can sit on my couch all night and knit away! Have I mentioned the Craft Show at church? It's only $20 for a table, so I'm knitting scarves frantically from my $1 Target yarn (which is actually quite pretty) in an effort to have a stockpile to place on my table. I'll be so bummed if I don't sell any, but I'm prepared for that. Sometimes I'm such a pessimist.

Anybody have any great remedies for constant knee pain? It's been Icy Hot-ed and Motrined…

I wish it were Friday.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

I am intimidating! Ha ha ha ha!

Pet peeve – veggie burgers at restaurants coming with "seasonal fruit" instead of French Fries. WTF is up with that!?! I'm a vegetarian not some silly health freak. I want French Fries, dammit! And that's the beauty of Red Robin, no matter if you get the beef burger, turkey burger, Gardenburger or Boca burger, you get unlimited fries. Yay, Red Robin!!!!

People have what I consider to be a huge misconception about me. And by people, I mean, mostly, my own family. Over the years, my OB would say, "There's a single guy here at work. He's such-and-such age and I was wondering if you think YS would be interested." The guy wasn't necessarily YS's age, but between the two of us and I would question why he was thinking of YS and not me. "Oh, you'd eat him alive, Kathleen." What is up with that? I don't eat nails or babies for breakfast with a follow-up of men for lunch. I guess I find it disconcerting that so many people view me this way – I know I only mentioned my brother, but I have had other family members have said the same thing over the years. Yes, I know that I have a public façade of being tough, but wouldn't you think your own family would know you better than that? Shit! I know strangers/acquaintances/co-workers who have seen through it. I get a little discouraged when I hear that all too familiar "Oh, you'd eat this poor guy alive." No, I probably wouldn't.

And way back when in my bar days I had various friends who would tell me that this or that guy was interested in me, but were too intimidated to come up and talk to me. I never understood this. I remember one example when Big Dan told me that he had been talking to some guys who had been very impressed that he talked to me and was my friend. "You know HER? Wow. I would love to meet her." He would offer to introduce and they would demur, for whatever reason. I honestly don't understand this. Who knew my façade was so perfect?

My therapist used to tell me that my problem there was that I was TOO COMFORTABLE at that bar and that's why men wouldn't approach me. I just don't understand men. In high school, guys hated me because I had no self-esteem and now in adulthood, men don't approach me because I have "too much self-esteem?" (Which is a complete crock of shit because I do not have any where near too much self-esteem) Go here to read what GoingLoopy has to say about this issue.

The CBC is back!!! Woohoo!!! This morning I got the 5:00 a.m. news for the first time in about two months. I was flipping past when I heard the familiar CBC News theme music. I went back and heard my favorite morning news guy, Bob MacGregor! And then at 5:05 there was Andrea Ratuski with her morning show (4:00-6:00 a.m.) Northern Lights' theme music! It was a beautiful moment! It was so nice to hear her again (although I think it was a repeat). I didn't care though! The CBC IS BACK!!!! And that means I don't have to suffer through my alarm going off with JAZZ!!! I HATE JAZZ, particularly as wake-up music! And 90.9 does not play the type of jazz that I would think is appropriate for the 4:00 a.m. hour. It literally would JAR me awake. Such a horrible way to wake up! Cacophonous!!! But tomorrow morning I will awaken to the lovely sounds of the CBC and all will be right with the world. At least my tiny little corner of the world.

A dear friend of mine (only a year older than me) is having open heart surgery on Friday, so please, please, please, please, pretty please with sugar on top, keep him in your thoughts or prayers (if you're so inclined) or send him good vibes. I really appreciate it. Thanks.

I hope you all have a brilliant Wednesday!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Blog Entry #200 (actually it's probably more than that)

I came up with some great blogging ideas on Thursday and then didn't write a post on Friday. And I'm not really sure another hockey post is good for business. Yeah, that's right, all of my good blogging ideas were about hockey. Man, it's good to have a hockey season.

Friday, Martha and I went up to Cheli's Chili Bar for drinks to celebrate her b-day. Boy, you can tell she's not a Leo. She doesn't like her birthday and she doesn't like a fuss being made. I've told her that birthdays are all good! She's going to try to adjust her attitude. It was a nice evening with some other friends, Guinness and nachos (and wings for the meat-eaters).

Saturday I spent all flippin' day helping my aunt put up my ceiling fans. Yes, I know it's damn near winter time, but the Schneider of my apartment buildings never got around to it since I moved in April. And my aunt now understands why. It took us over seven hours to hang TWO ceiling fans. As "Schneider" said when we called with some questions, "Nothing is easily done here." And trust me, my aunt knows what she's doing!!!

We got done at 6:30 just in time to drive like a maniac (me) to get to the AMC Laurel Park movie theatre to see "The Curse of the Were-Rabbit" with Mom, YS, and Nephew. We caught the 7:00 p.m. show and I was home and in bed by 10:00 p.m. Bloody hell I was tired!

Wallace & Gromit are two of my favorite movie characters of all time. Poor ol' long-suffering Gromit dealing with Wallace's little idiosyncrasies and cheese gluttony. It was very cleverly done, but damn, I don't know that I have the patience to deal with claymation! I always thought that the 30-minute shorts would drive me to drink, but a full-length movie? Nuts! Each time little movement has to be made and then they film it and then they make the next tiny little movement and film it, etc. I would go stark raving mad!!!

The Wings took their first loss last night to the hated Vancouver Canucks, the team with "the even more despised, shouldn't be playing at all but Bettman is a bloody idiot" Todd Bertuzzi. I so wanted to be at that game to boo that motherfucker! And I could have gone but a friend was in town from MA and I had made plans way back when to see him and his girlfriend. Turns out that they were in town for a wedding for another friend – yeah, a wedding to which I wasn't invited. The thing is I'm a little bummed about not being invited, but since I haven't seen said friend in forever (she's a bit of a minor celebrity here in Detroit and just never has time to see me), it's understandable. Besides, this way I didn't have to buy a present! Or freeze to death since it was an outdoor wedding on Saturday and it was pretty darn chilly here!

So, instead of going to last night's game at The Joe, my friends and I walked up to Cheli's Chili Bar and had some dinner and watched the first two periods of the game. We went back to my place where my friend took pics of the kids so I hope to post pics of the little cuties sometime soon, so you all can enjoy just how damn cute my cats are. ;-) Oh, yeah, we watched the last period of the game which was just damn depressing.

Oh yeah, Yay! Angels on beating the Yankees! I wasn't going to root for the Chicago White Sox but when it comes to a Midwest team vs. a California team, I have to go with the Midwest team. I lived in CA for four years and for some reason they all think that if you're from the Midwest you're a complete rube. I mean the number of stupid things said to me when I was living there. I came from Detroit, people! It's a big, metropolitan city! I've seen cows, but I don't think I've ever touched one, except at a petting zoo! We have an opera company, world-class art museum, a world-class symphony orchestra, etc. So, as much as I hate to say this, Go White Sox!!!

Yesterday, I read this little tidbit in the comments section at a friend's diary. "…if she is older than you, and she is unattached, she probably has a relaxed attitude to marital fidelity." WTF!?! Needless to say, I was PISSED OFF. First off, it was not written about me, but I object strenuously to this assumption that just because a woman has been unlucky enough (or lucky enough, depending on the day) not to find a person with whom to spend the rest of her life does NOT mean that we view marital fidelity as a throw-away. Who believes shit like that? Who judges people with such a broad stroke? Yes, the person is probably young and lucky enough to have a boyfriend/significant other, but to imply that older, single women throw themselves at other women's husbands all willy-nilly set me freaking off! It's just damn insulting and stupid. And for the record, I would NEVER go after another woman's husband. As if that needed to be said…

I did a different workout on the elliptical last night since the Fat Burner workout was apparently not living up to its name. I did the trail blazer and it was a bit more difficult – more drastic ups and downs. We'll see how that does. Today though I really need to get to Lowe's and get a ceiling fan light kit for the bedroom ceiling fan. I'd get one at Home Depot (lot closer), but they only had hideous light kits and, of course, it's not like I could find an employee to help me. Everybody tells me that Lowe's is better about customer service, so we shall see. I need to find a light for the kitchen too since mine is so incredibly ugly and not very light-giving.

And although I'm a day late (and more than dollar short), I want to wish all my Canadian friends a Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you ate yourself stupid yesterday! (Or Sunday for those who celebrate both days.)

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Sorry - but it's all hockey today!

The Hockey Season opened with a bang – at least here in Detroit! The Wings kicked the Blues' sorry butts with a 5-1 win. We chased their new goalie (for whom they dumped our Chris Osgood) Patrick Lalime out of the net after the fourth goal in two periods. Now the only goalie I ever felt good about chasing out of the net was Patrick Roy (no offense, Heather). Oh, and maybe Eddie Belfour. Anyway, I felt sorry for Lalime and was relieved when we got another goal (I think it helps to make the pulled goalie feel better when his replacement also gives up a goal) on Reinhard Divis. We play the Blues again tonight – this time at the Savvis Center. It'll be interesting to see what happens tonight as yesterday's game got a little testy and there was a fight with ten minutes remaining.

Oh, and because I made such a fuss about keeping Shanahan over McCarty, I must confess that if Brendan plays all season the way he played last night, I will consider forgiving Ken Holland for that move. Shanny was actually going into corners to get pucks, he was skating like it was the first game of the season ;-) and he even defended Pavel Datsyuk (Shireen Saski: It's pronounced Pavel DAT-SOOK, not Dat-SUK, okay?) when Tkachuk put a not very nice hit on him. Anyway, I had to give Shanny his props since I was so vehemently against him in the off-season. But I'm withholding complete absolution of his past sins until I see him play a bit more.

It was nice to see that the Wings still had their penalty killing going at top speed. Sometimes, I actually welcome the penalty because it seems that they play better when they're short a man. Crap, in the first penalty kill last night the Wings had TWO shots on goals while the Blues who were ostensibly on the power play had ZERO.

We have a number of new players on the team and since I had to miss the first period and the home opening ceremonies (don't worry, they're taped, I'll watch them today before the game) because I was at my friend's fundraiser I had no clue to whom Mickey and Ken were referring when they talked about Cleary, Lilja, Franzen, Lebda. Whereas in the past we were know for having the Russian Five (Fetisov, Larionov, Fedorov, Konstantinov and Kozlov) we now have ONE Russian (so sad) but have stocked up on Swedes (Samuelsson, Lidstrom, Holmstrom, Franzen, Lilja, Kronwall and Zetterberg). Good thing I likes the Swedes – except for Forsberg. I don’t care how talented he is, he's dirty player and I'm glad that he's gone to the Eastern Conference so we won't have to see him but one time in January (and that's if he's not hurt).

I turned the game on as soon as I got in my car to head home from the fundraiser and it was perfect timing as Mathieu Schneider scored moments later. I had forgotten how much I love hockey and my Red Wings. Hell, the St. Louis Blues are my second favorite team (although I think they made a big mistake getting rid of Chris Pronger and Pavol Demitra and keeping Keith Tkachuk and Doug Weight), but it did not detract from the Wings' win because when the Wings are #1 while the Blues are a very distant 2nd – you know, WAY DOWN HERE. The owners of the Blues trying to sell their team and that pisses me off because they blamed the lockout, etc. and if they were to look in the mirror honestly, they would acknowledge that they were part of the problem of big-time spending for big-time players and then not going far enough into the playoffs to pay it off. Sure, Mike Illitch of the Red Wings used to do that, but he could afford it. And he also has a good GM in place that is very good at spending the big-time money for the RIGHT big-time people. Granted the Blues weren't as bad as the Rangers who went after big names and offered big money without any thought to the chemistry of the team and they haven't made the playoffs in forever because of it. And I laughed every time. Damn, I hate the Rangers.

And the poll today is: How long until Eric Lindros is injured? For being such a big man, he's certainly fragile.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

More Nobel Prize Winners!

I missed a Nobel Prize that was announced on Monday. The Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine went to two Australians who discovered that stomach ULCERS* were not the result of stress or spicy food, but bacteria. I found this to be interesting because my mother has always suffered from ulcers and, in fact, they kept her from attending college because the doctor made her quit. My aunt always attested that it was the stress of dating my father that gave Mom ulcers. She won't be happy that that theory was debunked. ;-)

And here's the Nobel Prize for Chemistry awarded to people who discovered a more environmentally way to create plastics and drugs by reducing the amount of hazardous materials released by the chemical process.

The Nobel Peace Price will be announced Friday, while the one for Economics won't be announced until Monday.

I drove to work today because I've lost my obsession with the gym and if I go home first I don't have the wherewithal to get my butt into workout clothes. So, this morning I packed my gym bag and it's in the car awaiting my fat ass. And I'm trying a new tactic at the gym. I'm no longer going to do two hours of cardio, but instead am going to try to do more intense but shorter cardio. It won't work, just like nothing else has worked, but I feel I have to try at least. I'm so tired of being fat. Not enough to give up beer, but enough to try something a little different at the gym.

Tonight is the Opening Night for the NHL! WOOHOO!!! Life is good. There will be men on skates with sticks passing a round black object around an ice surface on my TV! It's not Champ Car racing, but it's the next best thing!

There is so not much going on in my life right now. I'm diligently watching Netflix DVDs although with hockey season starting that'll slow down. I'm knitting with my $1 yarn to make scarves to sell at the church craft fair and messing up regularly on the shawl/oversized scarf I'm making the SIL for Christmas. I knitted an extra row the other day and then realised it, so now I have to take one whole row out and even though it's doable I have to be in the right frame of mind to do it. And so far I haven't been in that frame of mind where I accept that I'm an idiot and just made everything that little bit harder for myself.

I checked my bank balance yesterday and even though it's only four days after payday, I have next to no money in my checking account. I don't even know how that happened, since I deliberately paid less to my credit card than I had been paying so that I would have some money for the next two weeks. I transferred some money from my savings account to cover any random checks that I might have forgotten about. I hate doing that!

I'm supposed to go to a friend's political fundraiser this evening and I just can't afford the cost. I know people will be pissed that I'm not there, but I'm having trouble justifying paying $35 when I simply don't have any money. And I don't get paid for another ten days. It'll be PB&J for breakfast and lunch for the next two weeks and grilled cheese or Boca burgers for dinner. Ooh, I do have Ramen noodles in the house, so I can go on Clarity's Ramen Noodle Diet.

*I capitalised Ulcers because when I first read the article I saw it as cancer. So, basically, because I'm an idiot, I assume everybody else will do the same thing. It's my attempt to be helpful.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Nobel Prize Time, Moon Landings and Polls

I'm such a geek (and not just a racing geek) that I get all excited when the time comes to announce the Nobel Prizes. Today they announced the Physics' prize winners. And being an Econ major back in my former life as a college student, I really get geared up for the prize in Economics.

I got the new Apollo 13 special edition on DVD recently and watched the movie and all the bonus features (except for the commentary with Ron Howard and Marilyn and James Lovell) over the weekend. And this made me think about the people in this country who do not believe that we put men on the moon. I asked the Libertarian (who insists he's not a Libertarian, but we all know he is) if he believed in the moonwalk and just as I thought, he said No. Absolutely not. I told him that I knew he would say that and that it just verifies for me that he's a lunatic. He thinks I'm a simpleton for believing it and I think he's a conspiracy theorist who is just insane. So, that's my question: Do you believe that men walked on the moon? I haven't had time to read this yet, but I'm looking forward to it. If you want to find the conspiracists' sites, just do a google search and I'm sure you'll find people willing to display that they're nutjobs to the whole world. ;-)

This is my favorite quote so far which explains why conspiracy theories exist:

To seem intelligent. Conspiracy theories are often much more elaborate than what's commonly believed about something. And they usually require the listener to expand his understanding to accept the possibility of a conspiracy. Those who casually examine photographs of the lunar landings are impressed when they are led to discover discrepancies. This inflates the ego and gives one the impression that he is smarter than the dozens who look at the same photographs and see nothing special.

And I had another question to ask my intermittent readers…but what the hell was it? Let me think……well, that didn't help. I can't remember what my oh so important question was. *sigh* It's a bitch getting old.

Oh, and for those following the Mom to Mexico saga – she's going for certain. I'm resigned to it.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Weekend Stuff (Movies, Nephew b-day party) and Pics!

I watched the Alfie remake sometime over the weekend and actually liked it. I think that having seen the original helped because I then knew it wasn't a comedy and I didn't expect comedy. I really think the powers that be did both movies an injustice by advertising the movie in such a way that you go in thinking it's going to be uproariously funny and it ends up being very serious. Of course, I don't think Jude Law learned anything from his portrayal of Alfie the womaniser since he hasn't changed his own womanising ways, but I guess life doesn't necessarily follow art.

I also watched two other movies that you probably haven't heard of (except for You*Name*It) Amen and Amateur. I liked both of them a lot, actually. Amen is about the man who invented the Zyklon B gas which the Nazis used to kill the Jews, although he had invented it to purify water, and his efforts to contact the Vatican and the Swedes to get the word out. I thought it was quite compelling and sad and worth the two hours. Amateur was a recommendation from You*Name*It and for once he wasn't wrong. ;-)

I have a question for my readers. You*Name*It also recommends Dumb & Dumber (which I've already agreed to watch under duress) and The Bridges of Madison County. I have NOT agreed to watch Bridges, because the thought makes me break out into hives. What do you all say? Have you see it? Did you like it? If so, what did you like about it? If not, why not? Should I watch it, hives and all?

Today is my nephew's sixth birthday which means that we celebrated yesterday with SIL's sister, BIL and mother and my two sisters and Mom and Grandma. Oh yeah, Grandma's husband was there too. Amazingly enough, he did not ask how work was…or did he? I'm so used to the question that I think I block it out. Every single solitary time he sees me he asks how work is because he used to work for the same company. And he asks how the founder of the company is doing, although the founder has been dead a good many years. *sigh* I know I should cut him some slack since he is old. I just don't think he makes Grandma happy and Grandma should only be happy.

And here are the pics of Oriol and his biggest fan!