Friday, October 28, 2005

Day Two being home

No one warned me about the "Charlie and Lola" Pink Milk Marathon the Disney Channel was running all friggin morning. Thankfully I like that cartoon. Now if it was Dora all morning? Let's just say I would have been carted away in an "I love me" jacket.

I'm feeling slightly better but far from 100%. I can barely breathe and I am constantly clearing my throat. And that is causing my throat to be irritated. On an up note, I did get these things at the pharmacy called "Soothers" with enchinacea, zinc, and vitamin C. They are wild cherry flaovored and are so good. Highly recommended.

And you can guess that there is no wedding this weekend. I still never heard from the pastor so it wsn't going to happen anyway. It's not like it's gonna be a big affair. Two "I do"s and we're done. If people want to show up that's great but we ain't feedin' them. Quite honestly, this weekend will be spent with me unconscious and Geo watching the baby.

Speaking of being unconscious, the medication my doctor prescribed to me had one of those lovely warning labels on it from the pharmacist. "May cause drowsiness". What a bunch of hooey! There was no "may" about it. It was a Day of the Dead zombie all morning sans the cannibalism. My daughter took full control of the house while I was drifting in and out of the enchanted woods. Thank goodness for the most part she is a good kid. She coloured in her colouring books (walls and furniture were spared) and played "princess". Next time I take the medicine will be bed time. Then again, anytime I'll be taking those meds will be bed time.

Have a great weekend everyone and, God willing, I'll be back in work Monday (Halloween).

Thursday, October 27, 2005

My daughter is getting her revenge

I'm home today. And I still only have limited dial-up. Couldn't this have happened when the DSL was connected? Anyway, I can't talk at ALL. I mean, n-o-t-h-i-n-g! I didn't sleep at all last night. This little thing of not being able to breathe might have had a lot to do with it. I feel like Jumbo is standing on my chest - damn elephant. My throat hurts, yadda yadda yadda. You know the deal.

I have a doctor's appointment sometime today. The office has to call me back to see when they are able to squeeze me in. Oh joy.

And the Dinks is home with me.

Remember my posts where I thought I was being evil mommy because I was either yelling or arguing with her? I think she either remembers those times, too, or she got on-line and read my blog (clever girl). Be as it may, she is taking all out full advantage of the fact I can't talk above a low whisper.

I can't help but laugh. She's being a typical little kid.

"Hot damn! Mom can't yell at me. Where are my crayons and the Marks-a-lot?"

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

What not to say when applying for your marriage license - final chapter

Geo and I have braved the elements and were completing our application for our marriage license.

Scary thing is, we have meant to do this for quite a while but little things (that have recently been eliminated) got in the way. We even bought our wedding bands. They are made out of Titanium and they are still sitting in the box in the same spot I left them three months ago.

At least that's one cost that won't be wasted now.

The application process went pretty quick and relatively painless ... like a tetanus shot. It would have been quicker if I were paying attention.

The only slight problem we ran into with the application was with me.

I am a widow. When my husband died, I was told by legal counsel that I could legally have my name changed back to my maiden name without having to petition to the courts (as some divorcees do after they are rid of their ex). All I needed to present to Social Security and the Department of Motor Vehicles was my husband's death certificate. Well, when this lady was filling out the app, she asked for my change of name documents. I nervously looked at Geo, who gave me the look of "oh you have to been effing kidding me", and told her what I was told years ago when N died.

"Oh, I don't think that's true. I'll check but I think there might be a problem."

She got up to go ask (I am assuming) her supervisor. I couldn't believe after all these years I had to petition and pay to get my name changed to something that, according to the US Government, it already was. Geo was pissed.

"It's always something." he muttered under his breath

"Don't worry. It's total crap. No way would Social Security change my name willy-nilly. I even remember the girl at the Norristown office calling somewhere to verify I could do it."

She came back with a smile.

"You were right!"


She printed out the application and Geo and I checked it for errors. None! We signed it and she showed us a copy of our "keepsake" license.

"You get a certified copy of it in the mail two to four weeks after your wedding."

Odd. I don't recall ever receiving one with my first husband.

She also told me that since 9/11, the US Government is much stricter in changing one's surname. For the price of one dollar, I got a photocopy of our application. I was to present the marriage certificate plus the photocopy to Social Security and the Department of Motor Vehicle. The photocopy was for paper trail purposes. Now I understood why she was so iffy about my name change.

"And I am sure," she said while looking at my last name, "that you'll want to change to his."

Just so you know, my name will go from ten letters to three.

We gave her cash, she handed us receipts, and that was that!

We left the office and headed down the hall back to the elevators. There were two officers standing there with two rather scraggly characters in handcuffs also waiting to get on the 'vator. When it arrived, the officers said to the occupants, "Please leave. We have to escort these men downstairs." Great. Off the lift came an older couple, a young woman with a toddler in her arms, a woman who could have passed as a lawyer, and a young man. The lawyerish lady said, "I'm taking the damn stairs!" and, in a huff, clicked-clicked-clicked with her heels down the mini-hall (where you get your hunting license) and disappeared through a doorway. I looked at Geo and he looked at me and we headed to the stairs.

"This ain't so bad. We're getting our exercise in" he said as we stomped down to the first floor.

We walked through the double wood doors and stopped dead.

"Where the [expletive] are we?" I said out loud as I looked around the extremely unfamiliar surroundings. It looked like we were in a basement. There was a small landing of stairs to our right that lead up to a pair of glass doors to the street outside. In front of the doors was this sign that said "As of [some date before today], you may not use these doors to exit the building [blah blah blah]". And to our left look like the Doylestown Sheriff's Department. Even better!

The doors to the stairwell opened and a another lawyer type came through the doors. She noticed our expressions of bewilderment and asked, "Do you need help?"

"Yeah," said Geo, "how do we get out of this building?"

She laughed and told us to go back up the stairs to the second floor and that's how we exit.

Oh joy! More exercise!

Back up the stairs we went to the second floor where we found ourselves at the security checkpoint from this morning. I looked and saw this huge wall of glass with double doors that lead to the outside world. I asked the smiling guard (again with the smiling) if that was the way out.

"Yes, ma'am. You have a good day and be careful."

And we were out of there!

Back in the car, we were fighting over the climate controls.

"I'm hot!"

"I'm freezing!"

"You have piss for blood!"

"And you're not human you friggin polar bear!"

I gave up and sat there in the passenger seat stewing trying to keep warm.

"Are you ever going to friggin ask me to marry you?!" I blurted out

Geo chuckled

"Okay. Hey hooch, you wanna get married?"


"Okay, we're done. Now quit your bitchin'!" He flashed me the smile that won me over years ago.

He is such the hopeless romantic. Actually, I think when it comes to romance, he's just hopeless.

But I still love him. I must. I'm gonna marry him!

What not to say when applying for your marriage license - part two

So Geo and I decided now is the time to get hitched. You'd think the darling man would at least ASK me to marry him.

We decided to forgo City Hall in downtown Philly and instead opted for the Bucks County Courthouse in hermetically sealed Doylestown PA USA. After many blank stares and a few near misses on directions (within the building, not driving), we made it to
The Clerk of Orphans' Court Division of the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas.

We walked in the Orphan's Court office and I was impressed. There were all of these old books everywhere. I pointed them out to Geo. I told him I was amazed on how trusting the place was in leaving these big ole books around for anyone to paw at.

"They're ledgers, babe. They're full of public records."

"Yeah, but in Philly I think they're under lock and key in the basement."

There was a young couple in there already being waited on at the counter. As soon as we walked in, they were escorted out by someone who said she was taking them to the next floor up for something or another. I couldn't hear it and Geo didn't care.

There were also these two large round pastel tables that sported a variety of helpful pamphlets with titles like "Marriage in PA". The office was so bright and cheery. I guess they need to do that since people mostly come here for their impending doom.

We sat down with a pleasant woman. No, I don't remember her name. I have it somewhere and quite honestly, I don't feel like looking for it. She was very sweet, talked with a really low voice, and was quite the good sport considering how goofy Geo and I are.

There are a series of questions that must be asked whenever someone is applying for a license and one of those questions is "Are you of sound mind?" I seriously did not hear the woman ask this. The sad part is neither did Geo. So I answered "Wha'?" and Geo answered "Huh?". I personally didn't think that was cause for an all out belly laugh but she did. She laughed so hard I thought she was going into convulsions. After a few minutes, when she calmed down, she apologised.

"Oh, I needed that. It's been a long morning" she said while still trying to repress more laughter.

She then went on to tell us the couple who were in as we walked in were originally heading to Cancun and Hurricane Wilma put a pinch in their wedding plans. And it was to occur that weekend (and it was Friday). I still didn't understand but I figured whatever the problem was couldn't have been good.

Before I continue, I should warn you that I have the attention span of a coffee table. At a moments notice, I can throw a switch and my train of thought will derail. Lucky for me, my kind sweet Geo is there to help things along.

"Hey! She's asking you a question."

"Hmmm? Oh sorry."

"I wanted to know, " she politely asked probably for the third time "when the event will take place?"

I stared. "What event?"

The woman smiled and chuckled a bit. "You're wedding?"

"Ohhh. Soon I guess. We haven't set a date."

"Well, you do know the license is good for 60 days, right?"

"Then I guess I don't have a choice but to get married now," I said with a smile. Unfortunately, I think I was the only one who took that statement humorously.

I really wonder where my head goes sometimes and wherever it goes if it would come back with a brain.

... to be cont'd

Many are celebrating and revelling in my misery

I can not talk at all. Nothing. I have barely audible squeaky noises coming from my mouth. This is absolute hell. I have gone from Demi Moore (lat night) to Marge Simpson (this morning) to a mime (present).

So of course, my loving office mates are taking full advantage of my temporary disability.

So far, they have joked, mimicked, mocked, and giggled.

One even went as far as trying to steal my ginger snaps off my desk thinking I'll just allow that to happen. Guess what? I have rubber bands, paper clips, and an aim that says you won't even make it of my office before you get stung in the butt. And I said all that with just a stare.

I knew watching all those Clint Eastwood movies would pay-off one day.

Quick post for now

I have been frightfully busy the past three days. Couple that with no high-speed at home makes for a bad time for blogging.

Also, I'm sick. No voice. I woke up this morning sounding like Marge Simpson.

And I haven't heard back from the pastor on seeing about getting married Saturday, 10/29/2005 (yeah, I still have to post part two of the marriage license escapade).

Please be patient with me. More posts will be here throughout the day.

Now, it's time for my hot tea.

Monday, October 24, 2005

What not to say when applying for your marriage license - part one

Well, we did it! Geo and I finally got our marriage license. My gosh, we are a lazy pair of so-and-so's.

We went to the Bucks County Courthouse in Doylestown. Yeah, I realize we live in Philly but getting to Center City is such as dog and I didn't feel like fighting I-95S traffic in the rain.

So we fought with 611- N traffic in the rain.

It was so easy to get there. No lie! It was cakewalk. Stay on 611. Then, bear to the right to Doylestown. Straight ahead. To the left at the fork. BOOM! You are there!

And D-Town was so ... so ... clean. No one was laying on a stoop nearby wondering if we had spare change. No one was standing on a corner proclaiming that Roosevelt should be impeached (I did witness that in Center City once). All of Doylestown's downtown was neat and orderly and manicured. I mean really manicured - almost Stepford Wife-ish.

The courthouse itself is located right at a fork in the road between Main and Court. Geo kept saying "I doubt this is it. It don't look like a courthouse." In between shivering mumbles (it was blastedly cold Friday morning), I told him to shut up and keep walking. He did - begrudgingly. He kept making comments like, "It looks more like a library" and "Are you sure you know where we are?" Quite honestly, I had no clue where we were. I, too, didn't think we were at the right spot but I wasn't going to let him know I was in doubt. When we got to the building's entrance, there was these big ole fat letters saying "courthouse".

"See," I said to him pointing my finger "I told you so. Now where's my apology?"

"Yeah okay. Fine, I'm sorry you dragged my ass up here."

Ignoring him, I went through the glass doors. We walked through another set of double glass doors that lead to the bottom of a stairway to the second floor landing. I must have had my "where-the hell-am-I" look on because the guard said to us,

"Marriage licenses? Up the stairs to that landing, pass through security, go to the elevators to the third floor, go to your right down the hall and it's there on your right side."

Yikes! The man read my mind (not like it's a ripping read). He smiled the entire length of his little spiel and I swear he didn't take a breath. I was in awe.

I looked at Geo and said, "He must be used to that."

Geo shook his head and replied, "Hello? The man JUST said he sees couples like us all the time. Christ, try listening!" By now he was walking ahead of me up the stairway.

I shot him a look. "So says the ass to the woman who he KNOWS is going deaf." I don't know if he heard me. He probably did.

We fumbled through security. I handed the guard my pocketbook which he dropped on the conveyer belt. I made an embarrassed face as I emptied my pockets into the little plastic container.

"Please excuse the contents" I said as I dropped a tampon I had roaming in my jacket pocket into the bucket.

"I don't see anything unusual" he replied with a smile. What was it with the guards and smiling here? Did they go to a class in Disney World on being a good cast member?

I walked through the metal bars and quickly pocketed my unmentionables on the other side.

We hopped on the elevator to the third floor. As I got off, I started walking to my right when I hear Geo say "Wait, is that the right way?"

He was staring at a sign on the wall that had all these arrows and different department names.

"Dumbass, remember the guard's speech? Off the 'vator and to the right."

"Yeah but that sign says for hunting, fishing, and dog licenses" he said pointing down a hall that effectively would have been behind us when we got off the elevator (make a right and a quick right again).

"Yeah, and the arrow points that way. We want to go that way ... to the right the second you get off the elevator. Oh ... and look! That arrow is pointing down this hall! And it says marriage licenses. What a friggin concept!"

I screwed up my eyes and made the most obnoxious dumb face possible. He looked at me and gave me a "Duh!" cross-eyed face.

As we walked the hall, I asked him, "Are you ever going to ask me to marry you?"

"I'm spending fifty bucks on the license. What more do you want?"

"It would be nice if you actually proposed."

"Yeah, okay."

We live together, have a child, and I wash his laundry. You'd think he would at least ask me to get hitched. I wasn't even asking for him to get on one knee. Lord knows he'd have a rough enough time getting back up off the floor.

Be as it may, proposed to or not, we were about to apply for our "death do us part" license.

... to be continued

What Horror Movie Are You?

A big shout out and thank you to Chris for having this quiz on his site so close to Halloween!

Take the quiz:
"Which Horror Movie Are You?"

The Craft
You're whole life, you've felt different. You know you're different, and that is why you break away from the norm and don't give a shit what other people think about you. You're you, you're proud, you're a bit... weird might I say? but you're far more interesting than most people will ever percieve. Keep being yourself, whether people like it or not.
Man oh Manischewitz, is that description spot-on!! The sad part is I have NEVER seen "The Craft".
Must rent now.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Someday my DSL will start

Verizon has now graciously informed me that my DSL start date has moved from 11/3 to 11/9.


Geo is not going to be happy.

Now for a clarification on my non-blogging for the weekend. It's not because of dial-up. It's because we have only 300 minutes of dial-up available each month. I have eaten 45 minutes thus far. Geo has no other access to the internet whereas I have a T1 in work. Ergo, I will not blog from home so Geo has the minutes to access the net.

I know, I know. I'm such the unselfish sweetie! Yeah, I'm gagging just writing that.

Bye until Monday!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Slight hiccough in Operation Eliminate Comcast

The DirecTV guys got here around noonish yesterday. They were lost.

When they came in they looked at the setup and asked if they could just use the current cable connection for the satellite system. Me, being the brain I am, said "Sure! Go ahead! The cable tv is over with when y'all leave." I was giddy. I started doing the "Goodbye to Comcast" dance with the baby. Life was good.

When the installers were finished, I had a plate on my roof looking south (I think - I suck at directions) and two TVs with 155 channels of "lord knows what".

So I merrily skipped over to the laptop to blog on how phase two was complete.

Then the horror sank in.

Oh crap.

I told the guys to use the cable connection. That was my internet.

A few seconds of silence and then a rather loud *ARRRRRGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!!*


I scared the poor baby. She thought I was yelling at her. It took about two minutes to convince her that the only person who deserved to be yelled at was me. And it was about to happen. Because I had to call Geo to tell him the wonderful news.

Oh boy.

I was terrified. I called him and he was not in a pleasant mood. I said, "Well, babe, I got good news and bad news."

"What's the bad news? What did you do?" he asked.

I told him and I cringed for the inevitable yelling.

"Is AOL still active?" he inquired

"Um, yeah." I replied

"We can still dial-up?"

"Um, yeah."

"So I can get my e-mail?"

"Um, yeah." I was in broken record loop mode.

"And the DSL will be here in two weeks?"

"Uh, yeah."

"Okay, no big."


So I am using my blazing fast 56K modem now. Ooooo. Dial-up sucks.

So, the blogging will have to wait until I get back to work. Have a great weekend all.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

One blogger's answer to PeTA

I don't mind PeTA. Some of their causes are of the noble sense. But on the whole, they are completely insane. Unlike some of their members, I can not equate my child with a white lab rat. Sorry, but if the all out cure for, say, AIDS or breast cancer came from the sacrifice of ten thousand rats, oh well. Bye-bye, Ben!

So for those of you who find PeTA to be just a bit off, here is a good read for you from that crazy ranter, Samantha Burns.

Meeting of the P.E.R.V.'s

I bet they are lost

I live in this wonderful section of NE Philly that I swear time forgot.

Within this section, I live on a street that was created in 1940. It was in the middle of a corn farm. The previous owner told me she used to run out in the corn field as a little girl and pick corn and throw it in the corn pit they had dug in the backyard (nothing remains of that pit). No lie, this was the only strip of houses, aside from farm houses, up until the mid 1960's.

That's when houses starting popping up everywhere.

And our little strip of houses was in the middle. No sidewalks to speak of. If a car comes down our street, unless they live here, they are probably lost. It's nothing like the Philly people would picture in their minds at the mention of the city.

About two blocks over, our street continues; however, the two are not connected. And the other street is off of a main drag. Hence, whenever I mention my street name, inevitably someone from the area says, "Oh yeah, that's off such and such" to which I reply "No, that's the other street".

So there is my dilemma.

Anything that needs to be delivered or any servicing this house may need is a guarantee that the driver of whatever business will get lost. It happens every ... single ... friggin ... time.

I'm waiting for the phone to ring any second now.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The irony of this one made me giggle

I heard this on the radio on the drive to work and I could not help but laugh my ever loving behind off.

Dog Attacks Anti-Dangerous Dog Bill Author

Bob Schwartz. What a dope. Hospitalized with dog bites. I wonder if the people in the hospital got a chuckle out of it.

"Hey everyone, check it out. It's that dude who wrote the mean dog bill! Hey Schwartz, tell me man, all I want to know is 'Who's your doggie?' Arf, arf, arf, arf! Hahahahahaha!!"

Too busy today

I had to go to the dentist this afternoon. It was no big - just my semi-annual cleaning.

However, since I did it during an extended lunch break, I had zero time to blog today. Good thing 'cause I had no clue what to blog about.

I'm home tomorrow with the baby. She and I will patiently wait for the DirecTV person to show and install our dish. After that, phase two of operation Eliminate Comcast wil be complete. I hope the poor kid doesn't get too bored being home with me. I know lots of moms stay home with their children and that's great because that's what their children are used to. My child is used to going to school. Tomorrow is gymnastics. She's loves gymnastics. I feel bad having her stay home. But then I think maybe a little mommy/daughter downtime will be cool.

We shall see.

At least I'm one step closer to telling Comcast to go pound sand ... really, really hard!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Phase one of operation Eliminate Comcast complete

Verizon came out today and my phone has been switched.

Phase two: have DirecTV installed.

This will be completed Thursday.

Phase three: get my DSL hooked up

This phase is the trickiest. The order for my DSL was placed on 10/11. As per a Verizon rep, my DSL should be on by 11/3.


I always thought it was like a switch flipping task. My bad. I guess there is much more involved in adding something that, for the most part, has all necessary equipment sans modem already in place. Speaking of which, I should be getting the modem in a week.

Once all three phases have been complete, it will finally be time to say "buh-bye" to the evil Comcast empire.

Another 48 hour break

Geo has one of his WWII doohickey thingers this weekend. Loosely interpretted, I will have the weekend to myself. Well, me and the baby will be hanging out together.

I mentioned this in passing on the phone to my mother. She already has my Saturday booked. I never even had a chance. She jumped on that like a pack of dogs on a three-legged cat.

I'm not sure, but I swear a could hear her sharpening her credit cards on a grinding stone.

The Seven Wonder meme

Oh look, another meme opportunity. Again, this comes courtesy of the now New Yorker soon to be Californian, NYPaganChick. This one was actually a bit more difficult to complete than I first anticipated.


Things I plan to do are what I want to accomplish in the next two years. I was going to list under things that scare me clowns but they just creep me out.

7 Things I Plan To Do:

1. Get married ... finally!
2. Get our finances in order
3. Move the hell out of Philly
4. Start exercising again (I used to be fanatical about it)
5. Learn to play the guitar
6. Purchase and learn to use a sewing machine
7. Learn American Sign Language

7 Things I Can Do:

1. Talk like Alvin, Simon, and Theodore (what a talent)
2. Math
3. Cook, but not bake
4. Solve wrought-iron bar puzzles (e.g., remove the ring from the two horseshoes)
5. Fine arts (i.e., sculpting, painting, drawing)
6. Ice skate, but not rollerblade (that's also a "plan to do" item)
7. Recite the preamble to the US Constitution (yeah, School House Rocks)

7 Things I Can't Do:

1. Juggle
2. Whistle really loud using my finger and thumb
3. Dance
4. Ski (water or snow) or skateboard
5. Drink hard liquor
6. Run (long story but I really don't know how to)

7. Sing (dogs for miles around howl in unison)

7 Things That Scare Me:

1. Bridges
2. Deep water
3. Losing my child
4. Large objects (i.e., cargo ships in the water, blimps, etc)

5. Heights
6. Anything evil (not church devil evil, but The Exorcist evil or evil spirit evil)
7. Flying on airplanes (just the taking off and landing bit)

7 Random Facts About Me:

1. I love reading especially sci-fi and fantasy books, but I hate romance novels
2. I was a widow at 33
3. My favorite ice cream flavor is vanilla bean

4. I love eating spicy hot food
5. I used to smoke (not one since may 2001)
6. I was adopted
7. I love cars especially muscle cars of the 60's and early 70's

7 Things I Say The Most:

1. Nope, didn't hear a word you said (or "Nope, not a clue")
2. Alright!
3. Really?
4. Well then ...
5. I see
6. And your point?

7. Good job!

Tag 7 People:

I tag:

No one. I honestly can't think of seven people I wish to torture with this. Do it if you want.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Please stop sending these stupid e-mails

I don't mind receiving e-mails at all. It let's me know that, at least electronically, I am alive. When I used to get e-mail, I would act like Steve Martin in the "The Jerk". You know the scene - when he sees his name in the phonebook? Of course, we are talking thirteen or so years ago when giving someone your "e-mail" address was considered geeky or obnoxious. Today, you are considered archaic if you don't have an e-mail address. E-mailing has been my number one way of keeping in touch with all of my friends.

But when my friends send me certain types of e-mails I consider crap, that borders on the brink of me politely replying that I never want to hear from them again. Those e-mails would be (in no particular order of annoyance level): chain e-mails, prayer e-mails, urban legend e-mails, and cutesy pukey e-mails. My spam folder should be programmed to destroy all these e-mails. They are irritating and choke my e-mailbox's capacity. I loathe, detest, despise, abhor, disdain,and spurn all of them.

I don't care about chain e-mails. Trust me, I'll take my chances in not receiving that phone call about the job I interviewed for five years ago with the company that will graciously offer me 1,000 stock shares at par value the day before their IPO hits $100.

Prayer e-mails? No offense, but stop using my ISP like a church. If God wants to talk to me that bad, I doubt if it would be via a "God loves you" e-mail. He'll just set a bush in my backyard on fire.

And enough with the e-mails about how Swiffer Wet Jet causes doggie and kittie degenerative liver disease. It doesn't!! For God's sake, you have access to the net! Look it up! Here, I'll help you - Snopes.

Happy bluebirds and dancing mice are so sweet and adrable. And the e-mails that bring me such cute animated hopping rodents can be over 2 or 3 MB. And some of my e-mailboxes have limited capacity; hence, those huge e-mails suck up too much space. So if I don't get an e-mail I might be looking for because someone thought I needed cheering up and sent me an e-mail loaded with bouncing friggin pumpkins, that someone is going to get a nasty reply!

Thank you. I'm feeling much better now.

The masses have spoken

and the K beat the C by a big ole margin!

And so it is decreed and shall remain maidink.

And she napped through the whole thing

Short version - It took me 2 and half hours to get to work this morning - a commute which normally takes one hour fifteen minutes.

Long version - It was hell with gas fumes. First there was the accident at 611 and Old Welsh Road. That is the back way I take to get to the PA Turnpike. Geo called me at 6:45 with that little tidbit of info.

"You might not want to go that way this morning since we all know how drivers from Philly are around accidents."

Oh too true. In a city where sirens and accidents are about as common as soft pretzels and rabid sports fans, we Philadelphians just love rubbernecking. Any accident is an immediate invite to go from 55 MPH to 5 MPH in .07 seconds. It could be a bumper kiss and we have to slow down to see if there is any blood or gore. For the love of all that is sacred, it's a friggin accident! You can't swing a dead cat around this city without hitting a possible accident site. It's not like Jessica Simpson or Brad Pitt is walking naked down the street! That is a rubbernecking moment!

Rearranging the morning drive, I went up Route One to get on the Turnpike. I'm not even five miles into the drive when I hear the words "mess", "update", and "turnpike" on the radio. I was nowhere near the turnpike on-ramp and I couldn't slam a bitch to go back the other way. I was stuck in my lane, I have my 2 year old in the backseat, I was about to go sit in traffic for Heaven knew how long, and there wasn't a thing I could do.


Then came the news on the twos.

Not only was there an accident on the turnpike at the Norristown interchange, it involved a motorcycle and there was a medivac helicopter en route to pick up the motorcycle driver. THAT is a rubberneck worthy accident. And all of it was on the westbound side ... MY SIDE. Wheeeeee!! I was more screwed than a drunk cheerleader at football kegger.

I got out the iPod, plugged in the FM transmitter, and clicked my DMB 75 song mix into shuffle. Scary part was I feared going through the whole set before I got to work.

How's the baby at this point? Completely unconscious in the backseat. She had the rat in one hand and a balloon clutched in the other. She insisted on taking to school this balloon she got yesterday at the Dollar General just for being a cute little kid. She squealed and squeaked with joy over this stupid balloon. Heck, it makes her happy and it was free - no complaints. And there she was, snoring like a buzzsaw with her little purple balloon.

I wish I had a buzzsaw to cut through the traffic. It was pure stop and go from Route One all the way to the accident site.

But wait, here's the funny part. There was another accident in the same location and this time it was on the eastbound side. Not one. Not two. Three mothereffin tractor trailers were involved. With liquid spillage. Of diesel. And gas. And milk. In a cattle chute. With no shoulder. The traffic on the eastbound side was literally jammed to a halt. No one, I mean NO ONE, could get by - not even the wrecker trucks to get the damn accident out of the chute. Guar-an-teed the westbound side was gonna rubberneck on this one. My heart truly went out to anyone sitting behind that mess (I had been there before). Okay, it wasn't funny.

I jumped off the PA Tpke and took the back roads the rest of the way to the baby's school.

By the time I made it to the school, the Dinks woke up - all bright eyed and bushy tailed! Almost two hours of naptime brought to her courtesy of the PA Turnpike.

And I only listened to eight songs of my DMB mix.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Who knew?

There was a minimum age limit at the show. You had to be at least in the double digits to gain admission. Geo's friend, K, who we met there, said something about anitique, relic, priceless, blah blah blah. I didn't care. Quite honestly, I wasn't too thrilled about having the baby there.

So, gosh darn, I sacrificed myself so Geo could go to the military thing and I stayed behind with the Dinks. It caused much pain and heartache, but I'm sure with intense therapy, I will get over it. Yes, that was sarcasm. I think the shows are interesting but I'm not IN to it like Geo is. To put it another way, he circles the dates on the calendar whereas I keep saying "Oh yeah, when was it again?"

Thankfully, there was a Farmer's Market right across from the militaria show. So Maidink, with small child in tow, went shopping while Geo went to his military gun whatever show. The market was really nice. It was a PA Dutch Market and oooo-eeee, did that stuff smell so good! We are talking wall-to-wall yumminess. Alas, we drove nearly two hours to get to this place. In other words, the purchasing of perishables was out.

But we did buy a pumpkin. The baby whined the entire time about how she "needed" a pumpkin. How is it at the age of 2 3/4, you need everything? It's not even want, it's need. We bought a small one (not an orange gourd, a real pumpkin) for a buck and a quarter. If that's the cost of making the kid happy, so be it.

We met with Geo after an hour or so. He said the show was nice but the merchandise was very pricey. We grabbed some pizza, said good-bye to his friend, and left.

But not to go home.

We went to Cabelas in Hamburg PA. Now that's a place that makes us all happy. Geo gets to look at his guns and stuff. I get to check out little gadgety things and camping stuff. The Dinks gets to look at the once-alive-now-stuffed-and-on-display animals that are everywhere in the store. The first time we took her there (and she was able to talk), everything was a doggie. From the black bears to the white-tails, they were all doggies. This year, we were a little better. All animals that resembled a deer were Santa's reindeer. All others were identified properly (except the moose - he was a reindeer, too).

For the most part, today turned out ot be a good day (even with the child banning).

One footnote. The baby was extra cranky and defiant today. That is not her. I always hear from everyone about how "good" she is (seriously, this is not a bias thing). And she normally is a happy-go-lucky kind of child; however, today was cranky-pouty child. I lost it a few times and was ready to throttle her (for those poor people who witnessed my teeth-clenching threats of annihilation, rest assure the princess is still here and is still she who must be obeyed). Now as nighttime is upon us, she feels kinda warm. Lovely. So I was angry at my child who probably is getting sick; ergo, her crankiness seems justified. Now I feel horrible.

Tomorrow's venture: guilt gift shopping at Target or Toys R Us.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Our Family Weekend

We're going to a gun and militaria show. Eee-yep, the whole family is going. And no, in this family, stuff like that is perfectly normal. So the conversation went like this:

M: You want to go where?

G: A gun show out in Somewhere Somestate.

M: Okay. I wanted to go shopping so I guess that counts. (thinks for a moment) We're taking Dinks?

G: Eeeeeee-yeah.

M: Oh. (thinks again) You think the baby will have fun?

G: Sure she will. She loves that stuff.

M: Yeah, I know and that's what bothers me.

G: You like gun shows, too.

M: Not the point.

G: She'll have fun, trust me.

M: Well, I guess. I hope she behaves.

G: She should. She'll be jumping up on one of the tables shouting, "Don't anyone move! I'm packing heat and I don't mean my diaper."

both laughing

M: Oh lord, I can see her doing that, too.

I swear our last name should be Addams.

Bubble Wrap - It's a beautiful thing

Thank you Virginia Gal for this suggestion.


I like bubble wrap. It's a stress reliever.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Change name or not? - You Decide

No, not my last name. That won't be for a few weeks. I'm talking my screen name.

Maidink always looked at bit off to me. Now the name itself does have meaning so I'm not changing it completely. I'm just tweaking it.

I figured it had to be the "K". Not only is maidink pronounced with a hard "c" sound but it looks like it. That never settled well with me; so, I decided to change the "K" to a "C". Visually, it just looks better. At least to me.

But I just didn't want to go and change my name without everyone else throwing in their two bits (I know it should be cents but I'm factoring in inflation). So here is your chance to let me know yay or nay.

Yes, it's the first LFEA Survey (cue the canned audience clapping). It's really easy. Just click the link in the sidebar, answer the question, and voila! You are done.

Results will be posted next Monday.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Hot cocoa - the cure-all

Okay, I feel better.

It was nothing a good ole cup of Swiss Miss couldn't cure.

Granted, I still miss Dinkerdoodle. But now I have a hot chocolate.

I know it might not make sense to you, but it makes sense to me.

Sad face day

I hate it when I start feeling bummed out for no real reason. I miss my kid. I would love to just leave work, go get her, drive home, curl up on the couch, and watch "Oliver and Co." or "Winnie the Pooh" with her.


I miss the little ham.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Yet another reason why I'll never go back

Everytime I go to this one place, I feel like I need to bathe in anti-bacterial gel the second I leave. I go begrudgingly, usually out of desperation. I avoid it like the plague. To steal a line, I'd rather go skinny dipping in a pool of piranha.

It's Kmart.

Not just any Kmart ... well, okay, that would go for almost all Kmarts. But there is one former KRESS establishment I loathe. Out of kindness, I won't name it's location. Well, that and possible slander charges (though I don't see how since everyone agrees the store is gross).

I went there today to pick up diapers for the baby's daycare. I had the plan in my mind. Run in, grab, pay, scram. Sounds easy enough to execute.

I didn't even get out of my car before the first part of the plan was foiled. I had the infamous "I'm gonna take five hundred years and stand next to your car door while picking my butt and contemplating the universe" person next to me. Good lord. Since I hadn't cut the engine, I revved it to see if they'd at least look. Nope. So I shut it off thinking "Maybe they thought I was leaving". They still stood there doing what I don't even want to know. I opened my door with my headlights on so it would "ding-ding-ding". That worked. Simplemind moved and I was able to make a dash for it in the rain.

I got in and looked for a cart. And what to my wandering eyes did appear but three nasty rusted lopsided carts. Joy. I grabbed the first one and my hand felt soemthing sticky. After recoiling in nauseating shock, I went for cart number two. The plastic strip across the bar was missing but at least it didn't stick to my hand. We had a winner.

I rolled (or hobbled as the case in these wheels) the cart to the baby section. I found the diapers after a few seconds of looking, tossed them in the cart, and hobbled back to the front.

I passed a Cinderella DVD display and grabbed one. Christmas and her birthday are coming soon and I haven't bought squat for either. With that in mind, I took squeaky hobble cart to the toy section.

Toys R Us and Kay Bee Toys have nothing to fear with this section. It was so sad it should have been on Prozac. The pickings were rather slim so I searched out the Nickelodeon section (all Kmarts have one). I grabbed a Blues Clue's Handy Dandy Notebook. It was cheap and cheesey but I knew the baby would love it. Good. One stocking stuffer in the cart.

En route to the checkout section, I threw in an eight pack of cheap-end Bounty paper towels (those are handy to have). Okay, I was set and ready to get the heck out of there.

I saw one of the giant red numbered cubes illuminated. Dashing to it, I saw it was the express checkout at the cigarette counter. Express! Yes! A quick escape. Some woman was standing there talking to the cashier. She said "Okay Madge (or whatever), I'll talk to ya later". Off the lady went and off went the red numbered cube's light. Damn. Madge closed her line.

I started to back up the cart and saw this young lady looking at the junk candy - the kind that would send a three year old on a five day sugar high. She couldn't have been older than twenty-one. Now, I'm not one to make snap judgements on anyone without trying to either know them or talk to them. Ummm, not in this case. This girl was the walking definition of "skank". She looked like she was totally strung out on some controlled substance and had the grossest nastiest hickies on her neck. That sight alone will be the main cause of any nightmares I may experience tonight. Now I was determined to get the heck out of that store.

I headed to the next red cube when I heard, "Hey, 'scuse me."

I turned. It was nasty hickie-ladened skank girl. She had something that looked like a Whistle Pop in her hand and she was taking the cellophane off it. I'm sure it wasn't purchased. I looked at her and didn't utter a word.

"Hey, are you gonna pay fer your stuff wit cash?"

Without hesitation in my voice, I let out a deep growling "No".

She backed away saying "'kay" and I pushed my hobbly cart to the cashier. I was pleasant to the cashier, which I normally am. I almost mentioned scary skank but when I looked for it, she had disappeared. I paid for my purchases, thanked the young lady, and made way to my car.

Good. Rain had stopped momentarily.

I got to my car and gave a paranoid look around at my surroundings. I didn't see the scary one anywhere.

With great speed, I threw everything thing in the car and quickly vacated the premises.

That will probably be the last time I ever set foot in that store again. Unless, of course, I have no other choice and desperation has set in. At which time, I'll just make sure I have a gallon of anti-bacterial gel on hand ... with a spray nozzle.

Monday, October 10, 2005

It was their year and what a year it was


Elvis Presely made his first TV appearance. Ray Kroc started McDonald's. The US performed nuclear tests in Nevada and the Pcific Ocean. Disneyland opened its gates. The Mickey Mouse Club premiered. James Dean dies in an auto accident. Rosa Parks is arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus. Emmett Till is murdered. West Germany becomes a sovereign nation.

This is only a brief glimpse into 1955. So much happened during the time of poodle skirts, hot rods, Ike, rock and roll, and sock hops.

In the middle of this amazing year and even more amazing decade, a group of women graduated from West Catholic High School - Girls. At one time, Catholic high schools that were co-ed had a strict division between boys and girls. I honestly don't know if that is still the rule.

There were 835 in the graduation class. Holy cats! I don't think my freshman class had that many students. That's 835 women who were ready to take on the world or, which was usually the situation, a husband and family.

I know this because Geo and I were at their 50th reunion working his photography gig. I was there as his assistant.

Of the graduates, 245 were in attendance. No husbands were permitted. One lady on the reunion committee told me that was so the women could all relax and gossip without having to feel like they needed to also entertain their spouse. Good call. And I swear they all came at once. There were no early birds or late stragglers. It was like someone passed around a secret note in class saying when they all should get together regardless of what the invite said. I kept looking out the window for a bus or something. Nope, no bus. What I did see was a parade of cars in all makes and models, just like the women.

The reunion was held at Drexelbrook Catering and Banquet Facility in Drexel Hill PA. Not a bad place. Quite impressive from the outside. They had completed a major overhaul of the facility in 2000. It went from looking like a country manor to Tara from Gone with the Wind. As per their web site, they have had many select guests grace their grounds including President George W Bush. And they catered the inaugural party for PA Governor Ed Rendell. The only other thing I know is that it is a tres expensive place to have any kind of gathering (but you won't see that on their website).

Geo and I showed up at 10:30AM - two and a half hours before the festivities. We went through the service entrance (actually it was a loading dock). It was your typical loading dock in the rear of a catering place. Nothing really jumped out as interesting. The only thing I took note of was a couple of columns about four feet in height of empty Amoroso cardboard delivery trays.

We walked through the kitchen and oh man, did it smell good. We had only eaten two little breakfast sandwiches from the WaWa and were splitting a 20 ounce cup of coffee. And we didn't bring anything with us to snack. No, the place did not feed us; it wasn't their obligation.

Through the kitchens doors we made way across the North Ballroom. This thing was HUGE! It more than comfortably fit the expected guest list with elbow room to roam. There were beautiful crystal chandeliers suspended from the ceiling and crystal sconces adorning the walls. One of the walls actually folded so as to allow two of the rooms to become one massive friggin room. And on the folded wall were meticulously painted copies of the crystal sconces in near perfect depth perception. I blinked twice before I realized the sconces were two dimensional and not three.

From the North Ballroom we made our way to the lobby and that was where we stayed until 5PM. My gosh, that was a long day. it was us and another gal who took the pictures for a "reunion yearbook". It's a cute little thing with portraits of the graduates and a few candid shots from the reunion. It's something a person going to their first or, as in this case, their 50th would want to purchase. And the process was simple: pay, smile, shoot, and done (please allow eight to twelve weeks for delivery). That was our day.

As the women were getting their photos taken, I would eavesdrop on their conversations (like I had much else to do). Some couldn't believe the turnout. Several couldn't believe who passed away. Many promised to "keep in touch". That phrase was high on the word abuse list. Others were "I didn't know that" and "you're kidding". I wanted to hear some of the women talk about their younger days in school. Oddly, no one really talked about the 1950's. I mean, sure there were plenty of "Remember that time ..." stories and the story always ended with the group laughing hysterically. But nothing about Elvis or Ike or the Russians etc. It got me wondering if everyone lives out their lives the same way in each generation and history is used as a buffer from the boredom.

Part of my job was to check the addresses on their photo cards for accuracy to insure the proofs were mailed to the correct location. As I checked, I would take note from where each woman had traveled. Almost all still lived within fifty miles of Philadelphia. A few were from out of state. One woman ventured all the way from Ireland.

"It's not everyday you get to go to your 50th high school reunion" she said to me with a smile and touch of the hand.


I got the chance to people watch more than Geo. I saw many looks of shock and joy on the faces of people who hadn't seen in each other in decades. Some were moved to tears. Some belly laughed at how each other looked. Many had to do double takes. Pictures of children, grandchildren, and even great children passed among crowds. Five decades of life were swirling in the air as each woman told her story.

There was one group of four gals who requested Geo take their picture. The four couldn't have looked any different (one was a nun). We found out the four women went to the senior prom together in the same car. They were the best of friends until time and obligations separated them. They were thrilled that all four were alive and had the chance to socialize together one last time.

As quickly as they appeared, they disappeared. I swear, all I did was turn around to start breaking down the photo shoot area and when I turned back, the ballroom was practically empty. I checked the parking lot. I was able to see more blacktop with lots of empty spaces. There was no traffic jam. I did catch one group kibitzing in the parking lot. They were still there even after we left.

I can count on one hand how many people I have seen after my high school graduation in 1986. I've never been to a reunion and I honestly have no intentions of ever doing so. But high school to me was different. I saw it as my four year sentence I had to serve before I was free to go to bigger and better things (i.e., college). Then again, who knows? If I'm still blogging 31 years, from now, my post might start something like this:

"Today, I went to my own 50th high school reunion. Damn I'm old ..."

I thought only paper did that

I got a wicked "paper" cut on my middle finger last night. Yeah, I know. I get great personal chuckles holding it up saying to random co-workers, "Hey, check out my cut on my finger". Of course it's juvenile. Duh!

The way I got it though was disturbing. I was trying to open a container of Penn Maid Kid's Yogurt for my daughter. It has a plastic lid over the sealed foil (I guess for kids, unlike my child, who can't eat a whole container in one sitting). Darn thing was a bugger to open so I ran my finger tip under the lid to pry it off.


One scream and a gush of blood later, I have said plaster on my finger tip. I would have used a Blue's Clues plaster, but Dink would have kicked my backside.

Upside was my daughter insisted on kissing my boo-boo to make it all better. Oh yeah, she knows how to score points.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Saturday Mornings

It's raining like mad here. The droplets are hammering the roof like a marching band's drum section. Definitely not a good day to hang laundered clothes or wash the car (unless that's what you like to do and if so, enjoy).

The baby is getting worse with her coughing and congestion. Last night she felt a bit clammy and her little tummy felt warm. Damn. Tylenol and liquid pumping time. Probably give her chicken noodle soup, too. All that plus the Wiggles and Dora will make her feel better.

Geo is working today. He has been since three o'clock this morning. I don't envy him. It's right miserable outside and he drives an eighteen-wheeler.

I think I'll have some hot coffee waiting for him. And waffles.

Yeah, I know. I'm just a domestic friggin goddess.

Eat your heart out, June Cleaver.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Two new things on the site

one: My picture. Geo took this one. It's me at my laptop. Notice the friggin mess everywhere? I hate tidying things up. Stuff gets lost that way.

two: the webband in the right corner. I saw it on Sangroncito's site (boy, that man has an adventurous life). I loved the idea behind it so I got one for my site. Check it out.

That's it for now. I am fabulously busy today. Will talk later.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Darn that invisible sign

One of the executive assistants, Jee, was just walking around frantically saying loudly, "Hello? Anyone?" Now, Streats and the CFO are on some big hooha conference call (about what I have no clue) so I am the only one back here in Accounting. Jee pokes her head in my office and while scanning around says, "Where is everyone?", and disappears back around the corner. And she was still pacing the hall wondering where "everyone" was.

"Hey!", I blurt, "What the heck am I?"

She pokes her head back in and says, "Oh, I'm sorry I didn't see you. Besides, I'm looking for someone important."


A nanosecond later, after she realized what she had said, she backpeddled, "I mean Jr. or the CFO! I have a Board Member on the line."

Poor girl was left to tend the phone line and no one told her where everyone was. Typical. Thank goodness we're getting an automated phone service starting next week. I told her about the conference call and she thanked me. I could tell she still felt bad for not only not acknowledging my presence in a room but for also calling me unimportant. I smiled and said, "Ohhhh, my invisible sign was on again. It must of threw you off." I laughed; she returned the smile.

I think that made her feel better.

My brain is stuck ... again!

I used to have a sharp brain. I was able to do math problems without the use of a calculator (not just add and subtract but division and percentages, too). I could remember dates of events past and present. It was fantastic. I had an actual memory.

Then I got pregnant. That ended that!

Amazing thing pregnancy is. Once a woman becomes pregnant, she becomes a walking question mark. Seriously! Ladies, those who have given birth, back me up on this one. It's a wonderful phenomenon my college roomate, Jen, dubbed "dumbhead". We forget the most simple things. And trying to remember anything becomes a struggle. I'm not talking phone numbers or addresses. I'm talking we could be looking at a bottle of water and completely blank out. I would point to objects a la caveman style and just say, "that". I couldn't say "bottle of water" because I forgot the words. That's sad. That's pregnancy.

So when our temporary receptionist sent me an e-mail today, it says from "temporary". Logic follows that a reply would go to the originator. He asked I reply to the e-mail so he knew I received it. I stared at my monitor in a complete brain lock.

"Oh no! How do I reply to a temporary address? It might get lost in the cyber-server since I have no proper name to reply to."

That was my logic. So I called the receptionist to tell him yes I received his e-mail and my reason for not replying.

"What do you mean? The reply goes to me 'cause I sent it."

Big time "DUH"! I felt like such a blockhead. I had a nineteen year old kid tell me how to use the reply button on my e-mail program.


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The 20 Question Meme

It's actually 27 questions but you get the point. This one comes courtesy of my Canadian buddy, Rowan. Anyone who wants to do it, be my guest.

1. Do you try to look hot when you go to the grocery store just in case someone recognizes you from your blog? People have to READ my blog in my area to recognize me. That being said, I never try to look "hot". Presentable, yes. Looking "hot" is for the narcissists who can't help but check a mirror, or other reflective object, when they get near one.

2. Are the photos you post Photoshopped or otherwise altered? Nope - pure WYSIWYG

3. Do you like it when creeps or dorks email you? I don't care if they do.

4. Do you lie in your blog? No, Why? Lying is lame. Too much too remember and I have a rough enough time remembering factual crap.

5. Are you passive-aggressive in your blog? Only when I'm ticked like at the traffic or Comcast.

6. Do you ever threaten to quit writing so people will tell you not to stop? I don't threaten. If I stop, I stop. I write because I love to write.

7. Are you in therapy? If not, should you be? If so, is it helping? Was in therapy for 400 years. Now I blog and talk to God (and not like I hear His voice. Seriously, I talk to God and that's my therapy.)

8. Do you delete mean comments? Do you fake nice ones? No and no.

9.Have you ever rubbed one out while reading a blog? Ah, no. Next question.

10. If your readers knew you in person, would they like you more or like you less? I am an incureable goofball with a bizarre personality. And I am (almost) married and raising a kid to boot. HA! Unless people get seriously annoyed by that (and those are usually the uptight ones who I could care less about), everyone likes me.

11. Do you have a job? I'm employed and I am a mom; hence, I have TWO jobs. The former is one that pays me in cash and the latter pays me in hugs and kisses (with the occasional temper tantrum). I'm almost a wife, too, so I guess I am pulling part-time duty there. :)

12. If someone offered you a decent salary to blog full-time without restrictions, would you do it? Now that's a daft question. Ummmm, eee-yah!!!

13. Which bloggers do you want to meet in real life? All of them! I want to do a BlogWorld Tour. Europe for DJ Taz, the Pigster, and PissedOffPencil. Canada for Rowan, Lost, and Sam. Then it would be all over the frellin US. We have Pax, Tony, Belinda, Virginia Gal, AngryBlackBitch, Cranky Prof, Leap B4U Look, NYPaganChick etc. (you guys are everywhere ... sheesh!) If I leave anyone out, my apologies right now. Ooooo, I got it!!! How's this ... you see the BlogRoll? That's who I want to meet!

14. Which bloggers have you made out with? (a)In real life? (b)In fantasy?for question (a) zero (b) zero

15. Do you usually act like you have more money or less money than you really have? Probably act like more. And believe me, it's an Oscar winner of an act.

16. Does your family read your blog? I tried to explain "blog" to my rents. It went sailing over like a 747. As for the rest of my family (other than my cousin), I really don't communicate with them.

17. How old is your blog? Started in June 2005 (do the math - I'm too tired).

18. Do you get more than 1000 page views per day? Do you care? AHAHAHAHAHA! No wait, that was funny! No, I don't care. I'm not in it for the hit ratio. Just to write and keep on touch with my blogfriends.

20. Have you ever given another blogger money for his/her writing? No. Why? Why should I?

21. Do you report the money you earn from your blog on your taxes? What money?

22. Is blogging narcissistic? DUH!!!!

23. Do you feel guilty when you don't post for a long time? Nope.

24. Do you like John Mayer? Um, I did, but he's getting old already. That's a pretty odd query considering the thought pattern of the prior questions.

25. Do you have enemies? I guess.

26. Are you lonely? Used to be - got over it. Now I can sit by myself in a crowded restaurant and it don't bother me at all.

27. Why bother? With what? Good grief, this question is rather pointless.

Which allergy season is this one?

It must be mold season. That is one of my worst. This time every year I am guaranteed to be as sick as a bassett hound for at least three days.

And, oh look! I started coughing yesterday afternoon. Last night, I could barely finished sentence without clearing my throat. This morning, I can't breathe.

I can't sleep either which is why this post is being done at 4 in the AM.

Now, when I was a child, by this point, I would have hospitalized with pneumonia.

My diet will now consist of lots and lots of hot beverages and soups from now until frellin Halloween. Oh well. Better than missing days in work.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Renn Festival in Maryland this year

Musicians at the Festival
The Reader's Digest version of this past Sunday at the Maryland Renaissance Festival: same vendors, great costumes, food quality down, mead quality worse than down, beer quality way up, good shows, a bit dusty.

Long version

Before anyone asks, NO I did not go in costume. Not like my costume is a big deal. It's not even one of those all out RPG costumes. It's a cheesey thing I got at Target during an after Halloween sale for a percentage off. Geo told me we were to go back home to PA straight after the Faire and, out of the group, I would be the only one in costume. He didn't care if I was in costume and he didn't exactly encourage it. So I went dressed like a normal schlepp.

And lo and be-friggin-hold, we DIDN'T go home after the faire. We went back to our friends' home. I was so mad. His comment was "Oh, so now you decide to listen to me."

Some kind of black leather fantasy knightAnd there were so many people there in costume. Some a bit more frightening than others. The one to the left was a shade more scary. Geo took the picture. He tried to get the guys face but was unsuccessful.

Geo and his buddy, V, kept doing the "Rate-A-Rack" or "Real or Fake" thing with all the women. A few of the women there were in serious need of major support. The boobs on one woman, lord as my witness, were down to her navel. All I could picture was her in later years with her nipples next to her knee caps. Ouch!

The food was a major disappointment. The pizzas looked like the frozen rectangle slices you can
One of the food alleysget at the supermarket (e.g., Ellio's). The beef and beans in a bread bowl? That was a huge joke. The huge colorful drawing gave the illusion that it was this chili-like concoction in a big ole thing of button bread. Then there is the reality. It was a six inch Amoroso-like hoagie roll with the filling partly removed and replaced with the nastiest blandest beef and bean slop in a lame red sauce. Steak on a Stick? Well, it was meat and it was definitely on a stick. Nothing anywhere said it was beef. I still don't know what kind of meat I ate. The hot dogs were okay. The curly fries were edible yet slightly undercooked. Thank goodness there were italian icees in half an orange (that kept the niece happy). And there were also whole garlic deli pickles. That kept the baby happy (the little bugger ate 4/5 of one by herself). Since we didn't eat all that was available, I can't say all the food was bad; however, what we did eat was not what you would expect from such a large and popular event. General concensus was the food was a letdown from previous years.

The best (or should I say most ridiculous) price for foood: a small cone (a wee bit larger than the cones you have water dospensed into at a cooler) of cinnamon roasted almonds - five dollars. And it wasn't even filled! Eeeee-ya.

The one thing I always look forward to is the
mead. One glass of their mead can knock you on your backside. It was locally brewed and it packed a kick. Or, at least, it used to. Not this year. Nope, this year the mead came in a moonshine bottle and was poured into itty bitty 4 ounce Brew Wenchesplastic drink cups (but they charged the same as the bigger cups from years prior). I felt more kick from rubbing alcohol fumes. Total downer.

The beer was much better this year so that made up for the crappy food and below par mead. A local brewery, Fordham Brewing Company, was the featured brewer for 2005. Their line-up was Fordham Lager, Copperhead Ale, Oyster Stout, Fordham Light, Oktoberfest, and Black and Tan. The last two are seasonal (like you couldn't guess with a name like Oktoberfest). The brew we (Geo, V, and I) found to be the best was the Oktoberfest. It was reddish brown (almost like Killian's) and had a smooth taste with no bitter afterbite. Geo and I love heavier brew - mostly lagers, ales, and stouts. Pilsners are fine but have to be super cold. They had many other brands to choose from at various locations throughout the festival (i.e., Killian's, Whitbread, a variety of Sam Adams, Coors Light, Rolling Rock, Molson, Corona, Twisted Tes, Hard Core Cider - just to name a few). And yes, I do like my beer. I don't drink to get hammered. I enjoy the taste and savor each sip. That is why the Oktoberfest definitely won my approval.

This section of the country has seen little no no rain in over a month. Take one part no rain, mix in a mostly dirt path event plus a few thousand people with their vehicles, and you get one nasty dusty cough producing environment. Kids were kicking at the ground making huge dust clouds. Fun for a kid - bad for everyone else. All the vehicles in the monster of a parking area were covered in a fine layer of dirt. I was literally blowing black stuff out evertime I used a tissue. I thought the whole family was nebulizer bound once we got home. Though that didn't occur, we are all still wheezing. Dry conditions did not produce the best of settings this year.

As much as I love to go to the MD Renaissance Festival, I think we are about done with it. I used to go to the one in Pennsylvania a lot. Heck, I started going there in the late 80's back when it
One of the many vendorswas a "spit on the map" festival. I just went there one too many times. I think next year we'll do the Highland Games in MD or in Bethlem PA (this time we'll see if we can meet up, CP). maybe Geo and I can look into finding a new Faire to invade. I hear there is one in New York that's rather large. We have a whole year to decide. But the Festival itself will no longer be on the future agenda.

So there you have it. The MD Renn Festival is not bad if it's your first time. The price to get in is relatively cheap and there is a ton to keep you busy all day. Bring extra cash for the vendors because there are planty of them. If you drink wine, it's there (I just didn't bother). For the beer drinker, there are some good brews available. If you're going for the food, well ... good luck.

I ain't gonna complain no mo

Corporations are having layoffs. Small businesses go under everyday. Some have to hold two or three jobs just to make the minimum payments on their bills every month.

Even some of my blogosphere friends have endured job loss within just the past few months.

And I am complaining about not receiving a bonus?

Looking at the big picture, I guess I'm doing pretty good.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Maybe they want me to quit

I'm really starting to get the impression my company wants me to leave.

Just four weeks ago, someone got up from her job, said she was going to lunch, and DIDN'T come back. This person had the fourth highest tenure here. The only three people who have been here longer are the CEO, the SVP/President of one division, and yours truly. The only other person who higher tenure than I quit (the little creepy slug chewer).

So now it's a new quarter and I STILL haven't received a review, pay raise, or bonus. I get all three every year. Mind you they have never been timely on any of those, but by the time the new quarter rolls around, all have been complete. Now some may say, "At least you have a job" or "Bonus? What's that?" or "So what? You have an easy job". All points are valid. Not every has a job or receives a bonus or has a job as easy as mine. But, I have a job and get a bonus and make it look so friggin easy because numbers are what I know best. Numbers and computers - that's it. So I darn well belong at this job and I darn well deserve a bonus and with the more things I think of to make the job easier, I will do it.

I ask Geo everyday if I can quit. he asks if we can really afford it. I say no. He tells me there's the answer. Damn. Then I look at him at his job. Poor guy. Every company he has been with since I met him treats him like the red-headed step-child. That makes me feel very selfish. It sucks being the kind of person who can realize that a situation is not all that dire.

But then I look at all the other people at the company. The walls are very thin here. I know other people have received all three things I've been patiently waiting for weeks ago. Not days - WEEKS ago. And some of those people have been here a little over a year. Um, hello? They have received bonuses plus raises? One was dumb enough to discuss rather loudly what they purchased with their bonus. How nice. Once again, my company is giving me that warm fuzzy feeling. No, wait, that's heartburn.

On a nother note, Yahoo Hot Jobs looks really lame today.