Thursday, July 31, 2003

Here's a little haiku-4-U, all about my day so far.

Really, I'm not cheap
I just prefer watered-down
Newman's Lemonade

On my way to work:
Mr. Herrell, ice-cream man
what's he doing there?

stooping, collecting
litter from his customers
don't dirty your hair

Outside Osaka
big squirrel is totally psyched
whole poppy-seed roll

You have betrayed me
I asked for tempura roll
not with spicy sauce

Disney PR guy
Excuse me for thinking you'd
want our publicity

Oh dear Merchantile
if slightly less hippie-ish
I might buy some clothes

Eye on my Television: On Letterman right now, local guy Chris of Fountains of Wayne is wearing a Smith College t-shirt.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Addition to the list of things my cat has vomited on:

Inside of the windowsill in my bedroom

She is barfing still, but barfing less, which seems like a step in the right direction. I guess the meds are working. The vet will tell me more on Thursday, I hope.

I also called my gyno, since I realized it had been a while since I had gone in for a checkup (for those gentlemen who may not know, us ladies have to get the interior parts of our girly areas prodded and scraped once a year. It's actually fairly unpleasant. Given the choice I'd take a yearly prostate exam and ball-kneading session). The receptionist was all "Oh my, you haven't been in for almost two years!" I said, "Yeah, I was wondering about that. Shouldn't I have gotten a postcard or something?" she said, all crabby, "Yes, but you see, you need to call to make an appointment! And after two years, we stop sending out reminders." (I don't think I even got a card the last time they sent me a reminder (in 2002), which may mean someone else in the house acccidentally tossed it or something. Yet another good thing about living alone.) I wasn't criticizing her at all, and in fact was blaming myself for not thinking to call earlier, so there was no reason for her defensiveness. But I have a hard time arguing with doctors or their minions, so I just dropped it. Anyway, my appointment is next week.

I have this Friday off of work. I'm trying to figure out if I should stay here and try to reconnect with my friends (I haven't seen anyone since well before I left for my vacation last week) or go to Brooklyn to hang out with the sister. I just saw them for an entire week, though, and much of that time was spent listening to people telling her their birthing stories. I am very happy for her, and being an aunt will be completely wonderful, but I also can't help but do the twinnish comparing thing. We're both 30, almost 31. She's married to a great guy, owns her apartment, and is pregnant. I'm essentially single, renting a tiny place, and if I was pregnant it would have to have happened through some supernatural process. On good days I don't feel old, but on bad days ... Starting over is a lot of work. But I'm trying to be kind to myself. That's the best anyone can do.

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

I am just dangerously crabby at work today. Sometimes I get into this mood at work (where I have been for far too many years) where I am smiling and joking yet also jabbing and complaining at the same time. During this morning's weekly status meeting I spent several minutes bitching about how my boss (who was not present) didn't get her piece in on time to me, and why not, and why didn't the person (my sub-boss, who was present) who was supposed to be taking care of it during my vacation last week ask her to get it in when she said she would? I was totally in the right, but it was unwise to show my frustration to the group. Especially this soon after my Quaker thing, I should be all calm and cool like a Jedi. Dammit.

Tonight I'm going to go sing at the shape-note thing. Maybe that will help me feel the force more.

Monday, July 28, 2003

Comcast can suck my left one. I'm on their website, trying to learn how to set up my free homepage, and each time I go through the multiple steps to the correct how-to page, it claims I've timed out and need to log in again. Which is bullshit. I want to get some photos up so I can post 'em here, or maybe have a separate photo page like Henning (of the Living Rockumentary) has. Because I really have nothing else to do with these digital pics except burn them onto a CD and store them away for posterity.
Hi, I'm back. Yes, I was gone, gone away to a Quaker retreat thingy that I go to every year in the Adirondacks. It was good, though it rained for most of the week, and those rainy days passed like I was half asleep (because usually I was). The rain meant I didn't do a few of the things I normally do, such as kayak and play shuffleboard. I did do some enamelling at the craft shop, and I swam in the lake a few times, and went out to Slim Point and saw amazing shooting stars one night. I also helped two bats (on two different nights) escape the big shambles-of-a-mansion my room was in, becoming the hero of the gentle middle-aged Quaker ladies on my floor.

Friday, July 18, 2003

A sinful friday five:

1. When was the last time you cheated?
It's been a while. I'm pretty damn ethical and sometimes get obsessed (or at least riled up) with issues of fairness. And I've never cheated on a person. I guess all of the post-1994 times I've paid student price for a movie at Cinemark would count as cheating, though the past two years they've randomly given it to me without even asking if I was a student. I stopped claiming I was one (I used an old ID I saved) about 6 or 7 years ago.

2. When was the last time you stole?
I stole a pair of scissors from work last week. I don't feel bad about it; I earned them.

3. When was the last time you lied?
Last weekend instead of telling the whole truth I omitted information and it felt like lying. I hardly ever lie, I feel too guilty. Plus the golden rule applies.

4. When was the last time you broke or vandalized another's property?
On purpose? I can't remember. I sound like such a little angel, right? I just like not being an asshole.

5. When was the last time you hurt a loved one?
Last night. Because I still love and care about him, despite everything I do and say.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

I found some amazing Flash-animated films. It would ruin it to describe them, just go here now and click on "cartoons" - for some reason the direct link to the animation page doesn't work.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

I finally returned to shape-note singing last night. I was very rusty at first but by the end of the night I was back into the swing. I'm still not confident at singing loudly unless there's a loud singer next to me that I can use as a guide.

Members of the group choose the songs, and somehow we got into a run of songs about looking forward to finally dying. Most of these songs were written in the 18th and 19th centuries when life was a lot fuckin' harder than it is now. What's awesome is that for the most part the melodies are very upbeat and happy in these songs. Here are some lyrics.

pg 61 - Sweet Rivers (lyrics written in 1803)

Sweet rivers of redeeming love
Lie just before mine eye,
Had I the pinions of a dove
I'd to those rivers fly;
I'd rise superior to my pain,
With joy outstrip the wind,
I'd cross o'er Jordan's stormy waves,
And leave the world behind.

A few more days, or years at most,
My troubles will be o'er;
I hope to join the heav'nly host
On Canaan's happy shore.
My raptured soul shall drink and feast
In love's unbounded sea:
The glorious hope of endless rest
Is ravishing for me.

pg. 245 Claremont 2 (lyrics written in 1712)

Vital spark of heav'nly flame
Quit, oh, quit this mortal frame;
Trembling, hoping, ling'ring, flying.
Oh, the pain, the bliss of dying?

Cease, fond nature, cease thy strife,
And let me languish into life.
Hark! they whisper; angels say,
"Sister spirit, come away."

What is this absorbs me quite --
Steals my senses, shuts my sight?
Drowns my spirit, draws my breath?
Tell me soul, can this be death?

The world recedes, it disappears,
Heav'n opens on my eyes, my ears
With sounds seraphic ring,
Lend your wings! I mount! I fly!
Oh grave! where is thy victory?
Oh death! where is thy sting?

If my mother saw this blog she'd call me and try to discern if I was suicidal (she will never live down the time she did just that, after getting a mixed tape from me - a gift! - that had some Elliott Smith songs on it. she thought that because I liked the songs, I must agree with the sentiment of the singer, or that giving them to her was a cry for help, or something. Oy, that was an unpleasant conversation...).
Have you seen this ad for DiSorrono liquor? After some flirting between a fancy lady and a gross-looking man who clearly has been told that he is very handsome, the voiceover says "DiSoronno's warm and sexual taste...." Excuse me, sexual? A sexual taste? What the fuck does that mean? It tastes as though you're having sex? What part of the sexual experience does it taste like? Because that would be a big factor in my decision to order this drink.

I think they meant sensual. Sensual would make sense. But I can just picture the stupid overpaid beDockered ad-guys sitting around and saying "Yeah, it's sensual, but I want something stronger that that. You know, like sexy, but also sensual. ... I know, sexual! It's like sexy and sensual in one word!" (high-fives all around.)


Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Hi, hi, hi. So I had an active weekend. There was a little farmer's market, a little tag saling, a couple of barbecues, some nice Thai food, a couple of movies (8 1/2, Finding Nemo), and a few downhill adventures on Sunday. All a lot of fun, but it means I still haven't finished setting up the apartment! Dammit.

Sunday was a Day of Fun with T, who has been bored and alone at her grandma's house for a week. She babysat in town Saturday night and slept over at my place, and then I took her out to brunch at Casablanca. Unfortunately I chose to try leaving Louise-dog alone in the apartment for the hour or so we were at brunch, and we came back to a bunch of little white paint chips that had come under the door sill on the floor outside of my apartment. Uh-oh. I opened the door to a frantic Louise and a couple of scratched-bare spots on the painted floor and more scratches on the white door. I had left her alone for 20 minutes the previous day and she was fine, but even that day I left and returned several times in order to get her used to the idea. So it's back to the beginning for me. Fortunately it's not been too hot out and I can stow her in my car.

Anyway. After brunch, we drove up to Brattleboro to drop my dog off at her grandma's house, and then had a mini-road-trip to Bromley Mt., where we had our downhill adventures. We were hoping for the alpine slide but a freak rainshower made them shut it down. Instead we did the DevalKarts (scroll down) twice. They were fun, though we went too slow the first time and kept rolling to a stop and having to push ourselves along with our feet (there aren't any pedals, it's all gravity). The second time I really went flying, at one point losing almost all control of the thing. It was great fun.

We also went on the "Big Splash" (also at above link), which is really just a regular waterslide in which you sit in a small inflatable boat. To get to the loading area a bit further up the side of the mountain, instead of simply walking up a set of stairs you ride this very slow-moving conveyer belt thing. And it says to just stand on it, so you end up going more slowly than you'd walk. We couldn't stop laughing. The Big Splash was more of a Little Sprinkle, and it was short but fun.

Also, on the way we stopped at a house that had a lot of Free Stuff on their front lawn (the dregs of a tag sale) and T found a two-inch tall plastic Puppy Brite (Rainbow's dog, y'know) in mint condition. He was our dashboard mascot for the rest of the drive.

Friday, July 11, 2003

1. Do you remember your first best friend? Who was it?

Wendy Miltner. I have no idea how I even met her, as she didn't live in my town; she lived in the closest small city, in a two-story house with a small yard. Her parents were kind of freaky hippie-types who fed Wendy a handfull of vitamins every morning and had a healthy pot plant in their backyard. Wendy had a rabbit fur coat that I coveted. We played well together.

2. Are you still in touch with this person?

No. Adolescence interfered. We didn't know how to transition from getting together to play with stuffed animals to getting together and talking about our lives and shopping. Plus she went to a different school system so we had radically different friends. Every once in a while a parent would run into one of hers and I'd get an update.

3. Do you have a current close friend?

I'd say my pal Avani is my closest friend. She lives in California and 99 percent of our communication is via email.

4. How did you become friends with this person?

I think I blogged this story already, but: It was my last year of college. I had finally gotten in to one of the on-campus apartments (after being rejected by my peers for six semesters in a row) and I only knew one of the women out of seven in the house before I moved in. Then one day Avani is getting some food together and she's humming or whistling Roads Girdle the Globe from XTC's Drums and Wires. I said, hey, I know that song! And we ran upstairs and looked over each others' CD collections. And we clicked, just like that.

5. Is there a friend from your past that you wish you were still in contact with? Why?

I am only in very distant contact with two people from my high school whop are now married with two sons, and coincidentally living in the same town as my parents. There are a couple of others - Tina Huytera, Maria Finucane - that I wish I at least knew what they were doing now. They were the girls I most felt an affinity with in high school. The last time I saw Tina she was living with a bunch of Rocky Horror fanboys who kind of treated her shittily. Maria went to art school in Atlanta and spent some summers travelling in a Renaissance fair. Through some online detective work my sister found out that Tina is married now, but that's all we know.

Thursday, July 10, 2003

Ah. Today, I am officially homeless. Home-free. The sale of my home is complete. I have a nice fat check I get to deposit tomorrow. It would be today, but the seller's lawyer is a complete prick. Just nasty all around. He yelled at my paralegal today because she dared to suggest that instead of him mailing a check to the water department and having them mail the check back to him (because I recently paid the bill), he simply not send the check to the water company in the first place. He yelled at my paralegal for being so stupid and ignorant to suggest that not sending the unneccessary check was even an option. What a dickhead.

Anyway, email me and I'll tell you this rat-like little fuck's name. I'd print it here but he'd probably make this into some libel case against me. I will tell you that his office is within a one-block radius of Packard's, and the first letter of his last name is "S." The last letter of his last name is "L."

Lawyer guy, just remember - it's not libel or slander if the bad stuff they're saying about you is TRUE.

Anyway, it's kind of a relief that it's all over with (except for several piles of junk- I mean, Valuable Treasures in the garage, that I'll be selling at a tag sale next weekend) and it's also quite a buzz to have my nest egg heading back into my bank account. Ice cream's on me, kids!

Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Hey I must be famous, someone interviewed me! Go see at the BlogBeat.

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Iranian twins die in separation surgery

July 8, 2003  |  SINGAPORE (AP) -- Iranian twins Laleh and Ladan Bijani, joined at the head for 29 years, died within 90 minutes of each other Tuesday after doctors separated them but were unable to control their bleeding in the unprecedented surgery.

In their homeland, people cried out in shock or wept as state television broke into normal programming to announce their deaths during the third day of surgery in Singapore.

more here. Hearing this on the radio this morning made me very sad. Maybe it's because I'm a twin. I think I had heard that the twins accepted the risk of one or both of them dying because they said they didn't want to live conjoined anymore. So much work went into trying to improve these womens' lives but it wasn't enough. Sadness.

Monday, July 07, 2003

So my cat Wedge has a problem, probably a thyroid thing. My vet has shamed me about not getting an endoscopy done to find out if she's going to die sooner rather than later. But she's ten years old. The endoscopy is something like $1200 and my cat has already suffered through two recent traumatic vet experiences. I do have some medication to try for her thyroid thing, but if she's throwing up because of a big tumor in her stomach, there isn't much I can do (they can't remove it, they say). So I've been cleaning up vomit on a daily basis. She just pukes wherever she happens to be at the time. Miraculously it's never been on my bed, shoes, or clothes, but it's been on virtually everything else.

Things my cat has vomited on:

The tangle of electrical cords connected to my computer (several times)

the foot pedal for my sewing machine

still-in-package curtain rods

brand-new, white, looped pile rug from Ikea

several other rugs and carpets

a pile of bills (paid, thank god)

my dog's bed

a pile of newspapers and magazines (because ruining just one wasn't good enough)

a stack of framed vintage photographs (not permanently ruined, luckily)

As you can see, it's always something difficult to clean, and she manages to hit several different parts. She's really quite skilled. I'm going to go try to get her to swallow a pill. Wish me luck.

I had a nice weekend. I went to P's aunt's house at the Cape, with P and his mom and four teenaged girls, and stayed for two nights. We swam in the bay, ate lobsters, and shopped in Provincetown. A and T each had a friend with them, and one of them hadn't been to P-Town before, so the girls had to prepare her: "Okay, you're going to see a lot of men. A lot of gay men. Most of them are very buff. If we're lucky, there will be a drag queen hanging out to advertise their show. See that rainbow flag? That means a gay guy lives there."

The same girl later said "But aren't gay men supposed to be all non-sexual?" What!? "You know, lesbians, all they want to do is be sexy and have sex..." Wow. It is so obvious she's learning this from MTV and crap like that. You know, the televised opportunistic girls who make out with their friends to get attention and attract a horny guy with a girl-on-girl fetish (not hard to find). I tried to straighten her out but I'm no authority on the subject. I'm just better read, I guess, on the topic of gay sex. Ahem.

Also, on Saturday all of us except grandma went walking on the bayside beach at midnight. It was during low tide when you can walk out towards the horizon until you drop from exhaustion and only get wet up to your ankles. P had brought his guitar and was playing songs to sing along to. I had my dog on a leash and kept running around with her in the dark and then splashing back to shore. Someone further down the beach was setting fireworks off from their porch. It was pretty damn magical.

Now I'm back and huddled in my little hovel, still not completely unpacked, wracked with inertia that I'm choosing to blame on the heat, stuck in one room because it's the one with the air conditioner in it. I haven't gotten dinner together and though I'd like to go see Spellbound alone tonight I have nowhere to put my crazy anxious dog. This is my new life. Hello.

Thursday, July 03, 2003

I have never really learned how to do the upkeep involved in being a girl.

I'm going to the Cape for a couple of days, so I figured, what the hell - let me try waxing my bikini area. No Brazilian shit, just keep the borders clean and smooth. I usually shave and then there's several days of red bumps and then there's an itchy period and then by the time that's over it's time to shave again. It's really a good time all around. But hey, now I live alone and can take my time trying to use the wax, without embarrassment.

So I bought some no-heat waxing crap. I sat down in front of the TV, which was tuned to a rerun of ER, and then I got down to business.

The goo was sticker than I expected; it was painful just to spread it on, like multiple slow yanks on my hairs. I smoothed on a piece of the special ripping paper, took a couple of short sharp breaths, and yanked. It hurt, but it was bearable. I did it a few more times and it seemed to be going okay. But then, hey, what are those little red spots on the paper after I use it? That's right, blood. Are you supposed to bleed from the little holes the hairs leave? Because I was. And then I was all, I should keep going anyway, because frankly the areas I did are pretty damn smooth and soft, albeit flaming red. And then I did this one strip, and I must have done something not quite right, and it hurt VERY BADLY. Then I look at the area and there's a blue-purple bruise or blood vessel that ruptured! I didn't even know that outcome was in the realm of possibility! And really, is a slightly bulging purple bruise more attractive or less noticeable than a few little hairs? I think not.

So that's when I packed it in and hit the shower. I shaved the rest of the place. No more home-waxing for me. The after-self-cruelty lotion was nice, though.

And just in time for your Fourth of July barbecue! It's hotdog sculpture.
Shh, don't tell anyone but I'm in the middle of an interview about my blog. I'll link to it when it's done. More soon...

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

I have been too busy to blog. Not busy with anything all that fun. I was supposed to close on the sale of my house today, but the mortgage people screwed up the paperwork, and now the buyer's asshole lawyer (they agree that he's an asshole) says we can't close until the 10th, however the buyers have to move in today or they'll be homeless, so my overworked lawyer has to quickly write up something sparing me from being sued or something if the house catches on fire. I blame the asshole lawyer who is not willing to stay late at work in order to make this happen this week (he's the only reason why the closing isn't any earlier than the 10th). What a dick! Apparently he has a horrendous reputation, but the poor buyers - close friends of mine, mind you - had no idea. I have half a mind to publish the tales of his ethically-questionable misdeeds all over the web but he'd probably find some weaselly way to sue me. So email me if you want the rat bastard's name so you can stay as far away from him as possible.

It's not all bile over here, though. I am slowly finishing up my unpacking. My trip to Ikea was a success on several levels. Last night I walked out on the dyke and saw a multitiude of fireflies in the overgrown pasture below. It's absolutely gorgeous out today. Things are not as bad as they seem.