Thursday, February 28, 2008

funny pics

I was gushing the other day about how TERRIFIC and addictive Leifpeng's illustration collection on flickr is. And it is both terrific and addictive, but some of these pics also struck me as rather amusing. I mean, their comedic value is largely due to the goofy captions that accompany them and it certainly does NOT detract from how masterfully rendered this stuff is (I mean, I wish for 1/10 of the artistic ability these guys had).

Part of the fun of these illustrations is how they insinuate some kind of plot, and if you can magnify the text enough to make it legible you then have a silly , provocative caption and the opening of the tale but have to concoct the rest of the story for yourself. That is, unless you want to write to the Saturday Evening Post for back issues from 50+ years ago. Is there even a Saturday Evening Post anymore? Gimme a moment for research. . . aaand...oh hey, whaddya know. I guess you could do that. Who knew there was still a Sat. Evening Post?? Wiiild...

Still, 'tis more fun to speculate. Here are some lovely evocative pics that moved me to speculate madly...

One caption reads "When a Southern gentleman jilts a Southern belle, look to the lady's past for a reason". That rather amused me, and when I set this as my desktop pic, I moved all the icons into that white box of text but made sure that that line was unobscured. The smaller caption here is more mysterioso though.. it reads:
"Only her love for Dana kept her in this house, where night after night she watched hatred drawing nearer to violence..."
I can't decide WHERE violence is about to erupt in this tableau or if it has already erupted...
Is it green lady who is about to get violent? I don't know, she looks,MIFFED at the very worst. Dana doesn't look too pleased about Pinky barnacling all over him and wrinkling his lapels so perhaps he is about to belt her. Oh --and there is the matter of that fellow being hustled up the stairs. At first glance, I thought he was just a decrepit oldster. Buuuut. . . couldn't it also be that he's been kicked repeatedly in the guts and hit with a lead pipe? You would also need help up the stairs if you had been kicked repeatedly in the guts and hit with a lead I right??

WOW..she's saying NO even when faced with a suitor wielding a guitar? Why, the acoustic guitar is one of the wiliest weapons in the lothario arsenal....

I cannot fathom such tremendous willpower!! It truly boggles the nog...

That is from when my memoirs were serialized in Cosmo. Even though it IS about me, I didn't pose for the illustration (believe it or not). So I'm curious about this gentleman's gesture. According to the caption, it means "Are you by any chance free to take dinner with me tonight?" but I wonder...looks like somethin' else. Well, whatever it means --she /I look(s) intrigued...

What is he doing on that ladder? Is he being a total lech and employing a ladder to gain an aerial view of her cleavage? If that's the case, she is being exceptionally cooperative. Is this a prop in his mime act? Possibly she was steadying the ladder as he used it in order to change the bulb in this light fixture (maybe to a different wattage, or perhaps to one that was less moth-attracting??) but mid-ascent he was overcome by a sudden attack of narcolepsy...
Even more puzzling is HER behavior. The caption quotes her as saying "Slap me--good and hard" WTF?? Does it not occur to her that a dude in this get-up (neckerchief? loafers sans socks??) might not be capable of the good, robust slap she requires...

And speaking of excessive violence... here we have Mariposa Lil. I'm no CSI wiz, but it looks like she thumped him while he was blissfully unaware. Certainly doesn't look like a case of self-defense. Looks more like a case of "How'm ah gonna pay my rent, Red, if you gone gambled away all yo' whorin' moneys?"

But what I love the mostest here is this caption-- "It's hard for a man to love a woman after she's clouted him with a bung starter!!" Ok, ok, I realize a "bung starter" is obviously a mallet for the pounding in of a cork into an old timey barrel keg. But I can't help but snicker. I suppose it comes from having watched too much Beavis & Butthead in my formative years. If there's one thing I learned from my years of B&B viewership, it's that if you do not get the TP urgently needed for your bunghole, you're apt to fall prey to the dreaded POLIO of the BUNGHOLIO. I mean, all polio is bad, certainly, but bungholio polio... jinkies. I can't.. I can't even begin to... damn.. it's just unspeakably horrid..

Anyways, "clouting by bungstarter" is my new favorite threat. I've long favored "I shall GRIND YOUR BONES to MAKE MY BREAD!" which I appropriated from the Giant from Jack & the beanstalk fame. And--don't get me wrong-- I still adore that one. I'd just hate to overuse it. So, today if someone cuts me off in traffic I will holler "You f****er! I shall GRIND YOUR BONES to MAKE MY BREAD!" but tomorrow, when some customer schmuck is rude to me on the phone I will growl "Why I oughtta clout you with a bung starter, you miserable bastard" (with Mr Customer muted or on hold of course ) You gotta mix it up, keep it fresh, y'know??

I Have Damsel-in-distress Issues

Damn my insatiable need for java!!

Last night, I went out to retrieve something from my car, my driver's side door would not latch shut. I have had this happen periodically--always this same door, always in cold weather. Usually it takes a little wait, a little jiggling of the inner/outer handle, repeated slams and it magically rights itself. I didn' t feel like dicking around with it last night so I just pressed it shut, made sure the dome light went out, and went back in the house. Then this morning when I got in the car to set off for work, it shut without any difficulty.

HOWEVER... I had a little extra time and, it being thirsty Thursday, I just *had* to stop off and procure a cup of coffee for the ride into the office. Well I stopped at Mike's Mobile and grabbed coffee (3/4 Breakfast Blend, 1/4 Golden French Toast flavor, with Milk & liberal dosing of sugar) and a doughnut and well, certainly you have pre-surmised what happened when I returned to my vehicle. Mothafuckin' door would NOT close. I try the usual routine of handle jiggling and alternating door slams with various degrees of force...I'm at this for 10 minutes and when I see it's 8:26 I realize I'm probably not going to make it to work for 8:30am. At this point I futilely ransack my purse for the cell phone I'd left at my desk at work. Luckily one of Mike's Mobile's many fine amenities is they are host to one of the few remaining payphones in N America. I rang the office 800# (niiice) and explained to my coworker Laurel that I'd be late and why (also forewarned her that I was going to be one grumpy bitch when I did arrive on the scene) And Laurel's like "Oh, yeah..I had a van that did that. I used to have to jiggle the latch in the door all the time to get it to work" I get back to the car, and I'm thinking "Yeeeeah...latch jiggling--I've yet to try that"

Considering my car is such a flea market on wheels, it is pretty miraculous ( &unfortunately so)that I don't have a screwdriver in my car...well I didn't , I should say. I do now. But first, I had a go at the door with the non-business end of a blush brush. It was only after my blush brush tinkering got the latch jammed in the latched position, that I went in and bought a proper screwdriver. Also bought a wee cannister of lock de-icer. And ginger-lemon lip balm (that's neither here nor there of course, although I could use a smidge of that applied right now). Managed to squirt a li'l bit of de-icer into the latch mechanism before I broke the cannister nozzle off in my door. With the screwdriver I was able to get the latch moving up & down freely again. However that sonofabitch still would not shut for me.

Notice a tactic missing from my frantic efforts? I NEVER asked anyone for help. I am so RETARDEDLY STUBBORN about that sometimes!! I need to learn to channel Blanche DuBois (not of The Golden Girls..different Blanche) who unperturbedly purrs "Whoever you are—I have always depended on the kindness of strangers" (let's just ignore the fact that this is after suffering some sort of break from reality and she's being led off to the boobyhatch as she sez that) Even when I get help forced upon me, or I resign to asking for help I am always pretty pissed at my lack of self-reliance. Externally I'm making with the sickeningly profuse thank-yous (which is totally *sincere* I should add...don't get me wrong, I AM grateful) but internally I'm kicking myself: "Awww YOU coulda done that you hapless ninny!"
Anyways, this a.m. there was at least 50 customers traversing the parking lot that I could have implored for aide but I couldn't do it. I was clinging to this insistence that I could--I WOULD-- fix this my own damn self!

Ultimately though, the cashier dude came out and helped me. I had mentioned my predicament when I bought the de-icer & screwdriver. I probably wouldn't have done that unprompted though. He'd looked at my purchases and said "Uh-oh. Looks like trouble" and then I explained.

Cashier-dude said "Are you *sure* it's the door?" And I said (oh so eloquently) "Well yeah. The latch won't latch. So I think so." He jabbed at my lock switch a couple times, gave my driver's side door lock a tug or two. I got in, he shut the door, and THE G-D THING LATCHED SHUT!! This triggered in me a very complex rush of "Halle-freakin'-lujah!!" and "Oh what the bloody hell?" all at once. Initially I was mostly elated and grateful though (the mantra of "why didn't I think of that??" &self-administered ass kicking didn't commence until later in my ride to work) My window was frozen shut...and I wasn't opening that damn door again even if my bucket seat spontaneously combusted. So my "Thank you! Thanks so much!" was totally mute. But I tried to move my lips very clearly. Also in lieu of a universally recognized gesticulation for "thank you" I pressed my left fist to my heart at him. Which, I dunno, probably means "I fucking LOVE YOU". But, I guess in the moment that was true, too. Just the same, I feel sure I looked like some exasperatedly elated trainwreck-tool-wackadoo. I am going to institute a temporary boycott of Mike's Mobile.

I was an hour late to work (and oh yes, I WAS a grumpy bitch upon arrival). My door didn't latch when I got here. When I went to lunch, I got it to latch again. Picking up my takeout, I had nightmarish premonitions of getting stranded at Chilis and so I went out my passenger's side door..much more nimbly than you'd think I could, I might add. Entered back through the passengers door after getting the food, wondering how many--if any-- eyes over yonder in the KMart parking lot were looking my way. When I got back here, I brazenly attempted a normal driver's side door exit again..door successfully latched. I have no fucking idea what to expect when I go to leave tonight....

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

New diversions...

So today it wasn't castle websites (though I think I'll be revisiting that fixation) but I was totally OBSESSED with this absolutely marvelous flickr set. I checked out every single illustrator, from Anderson to Woods . To add a bit of visual stimuli to my blog (that it has been lacking for the past few days) I will post an example here. I couldn't say it's my fave (though I like it lots), I mean there's such an abundance of great work offered up in that collection, I find it's absolutely IMPOSSIBLE to pick a fave.

My shoulders & upper arms are sore as hell today. Now, this would be from last night's pushing efforts in the group project of getting my car unstuck at the bottom of the driveway. It was a damnable pain in the ass that I got stuck and it irked me even more that I couldn't get unstuck without help. My LANDLORD and his daughter came out and assisted me. DRAT and CURSES. I try sooo hard to keep a very laissez faire arrangement with these people and having them help me dislodge my car from a snowbank mucks said arrangement up a bit. Look I KNOW that sounds ungrateful and maladjusted. But I just don't want the landlord fam to think we're great chums. I am as fastidious about safeguarding my privacy as I would be if I had anything going on that warranted such stringent privacy (but I just don't presently..) And I 'spose I'm also wanting to maintain that aura of mystery that I so alluringly exude..... haa.

Anyways the ultra-abridged version of the whole ordeal is that I arrived home at 7:45pm but didn't wind up going inside until 9:15. Even with 3 people & nearly 2hrs labor, the best we were able to do is to get the car halfway up the drive and off to the left side (which was at least a safe place to park it). Getting it into the garage was an utter impossibility.

Oh.. I failed to mention earlier that today I faxed the resume (I am thinking -belatedly - that perhaps I should've had the rag inspected by a pro of some sorts before I commenced faxing it all over the Upper Valley but ohhh fuckin' well!) to 2 different companies today and emailed it (along with "letter of interest") to another (a law firm..wooo!) I feel compelled to give a quickie progress report on the job hunt front...particularly after blathering on about all this unconstructive flickr browsing I'm doing. I am not slacking off *all* day. On the other hand, I am not CONSTANTLY& TOTALLY immersing myself in the hunt like I should. But I do make myself apply to at least 3 companies daily before I permit myself to piss away the rest of the day. Oh, and yeah, I do a smattering of work every now and then. But truthfully, my already middling work ethic has waned considerably since my job's been eliminated and I can't say as I'm all that guilt-ridden about it. I was talking 'bout this w/ Robin today (via IM banter) and she said "What's the worst that could happen? They keep your "stay bonus' ?" Which was a weird and slightly dumb thing to say, as "what's the worst that could happen.." should precede a not all that unfortunate consequence. Which is not to say a fortunate consequence...just something that is mildly bad. But ahh..if my "stay bonus" was withheld it would be quite beyond mildly bad!! It *WOULD* be the worst that could happen...for them! If "the Man" absconded with my stay bonus...I would haunt uhh..haunt them ....{ahh gee lemme think} some murdered chap in a Poe story!! It would be a relentless and FEROCIOUS haunting, I assure youse. Oh, heeey , if that literary point of reference doesn't do it for ya, think o' me as THIS GUY....

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I feel like all I've done today is urinate and look at castle websites.

Y'see I bought this fab bargain book at Borders-- Castles, Palaces & Stately Houses of Britain & Ireland and one of its appendices has "Property Listings" wherein they list mailing addresses of all the featured palaces/manors and also, where applicable, their webpage URL. Most of these places are online, I was pleased to discover. For instance, Robin and I (yes, I coerced me mates into joining in on the work avoidance...I am SUCH a corruptive influence) were planning our hypothetical weddings at Chatsworth ..I tell ya..gonna be damned bee-yooo-tiful once the matter of the groom is decided upon.

Some absolutely gorgeous digs in the book. Also, I find it SO elegant how it seems that every residence just had to have a name. When that as-yet-undetermined groom builds me a magnificent home, I assure you we WILL slap a name on that casa.

I did manage to make an appointment for an eye exam today . And I scheduled an interview...I guess it's an interview...with this employment agency for this Friday. Robin recommended these guys highly (her friend works there , plus it's how she got her current gig) but it feels a bit like I'm allying myself with pimps. The dame on the phone said I should allow up to 2 hrs for their "evaluation & screening process". Robin said I'll probably be doing a typing test, proofreading test....and doing some alphabetizing. Daaaamn-- who is the sorry nimrod who botches an alphabetizing test?? Also I have to bring TWO FORMS of ID. Damned inconvenient, that. My license is always at the ready, but for my other form...umm... well, I think I might know where my birth certificate is. As for the whereabouts of my SS the hell outta me. Y'know, I think that if you're reputable, and more or less on the "up & up" then you shouldn't have to be bothered with keeping all that sheize in order. I mean, it's not as if "The MAN" ain't got a dossier on you, right? (Governmental MAN in this instance, not Corporate MAN...though it's true of both I suppose) Seems to me like my maintaining the paperwork is just a duplication of efforts. Ugh, life is all gunked up with excess bureaucracy, ain't it? Siiigh.

Anyways, Stacy (who scheduled my "evaluation & screening process")didn't say anything about bringing a urine sample, but I might, just to be sure all o' my bases are covered, bring along a pint of my finest vintage in a tightly tightly sealed Mason jar. Would it not be the utter height of hilarity to float 3 or 4 Ramen noodles in there?

Friday, February 22, 2008


What does it take to post pictures so that they fucking enlarge when you click on them?? It seems to be entirely incumbent on some elusive Providential whim....

It frustrates the HELL outta me, dagnabbit. .. .

free lunch!!

Because we passed on dinner with Nance on Tuesday night, the company thought they'd pick up our lunch tab. Lisa sent out the email yesterday soliciting ideas of where to order from. I suggested the very priciest restaurant I could think of. If the company wants to assuage their ill conscience via free lunch, then they're going to have to shill out copious moolah, beeeyotch.

Except....nobody took my suggestion seriously so we ended up with The Ninety Nine. Here's the email from this a.m.---

Wooh, SHIT! I just reread that and I must really be despondent. I am not usually a big typo offender but I spotted 2 GLARING errors in my response email. Guess I'm all outta sorts.

It kind of irked me how it was stipulated that we order off the "Lunch Break menu" Heaven forfend we get *too* expensive!! I mean, it's @#%$^ing Ninety much damage can we do?? But whatev. My fish & chips was scrumdiddlyumptious. Except it was a bit on the skimpy side...I coulda put down about 3X that much schrod. (yeeesh..sounds smutty!)

Believe it or not, I'm in a nicer & slightly less petulant mood today. I wrote a chipper thank-you-for-lunch email (to Maggie, NOT Nance) and have been doing much less sulky. I think the improvement can be partially attributed to the fact that I fully got my ass in gear on the job hunt front. I finished up my resume and my references page, and faxed the resume to 2 different businesses and a job placement agency.

I have absolutely NADA planned for this weekend. I wish my Wives & Daughters DVD set (the replacement) would come in unexpectedly early. It would be a PRIMO weekend for mini-series watching as there is nothing on the itinerary. Plus, I'm reluctant to plan anything that may involve $$. I'm feeling it may be wise to squirrel some "nuts" away for what might be a loooong winter.

That means I need to save money. Oh damn. I'd thought it would seem less abhorrent if I used a cutesy woodland creature euphemism when mentioning it. Didn't work. Fuuuuuck...

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Mood Check

Current mood: petulant. I looked that word up (@ the ol' m-w) to make sure that that meant what I thought it meant and not only did it mean what I thought it meant, but it also perfectly describes my attitude today.

Everybody else seems to have reverted back to this business-as-usual good humor and I can't stand it. They expect this great equanimity out of us, and even though I realize it's the high road and it would behoove me to strive for that, I find I am, perversely, clinging to a sour mood. I am withholding my equanimity out of spite!!

I'm not silly enough to be grumbling at people, or hollering, or glaring or anything. I've just gotten overtly withdrawn. OK , well I can't suppress the occasional snide comment either. When opening the departmental mini fridge to get coffee creamer this morning there were not one, but two cartons. At which I marvelled "Hey wow. TWO creamers. Isn't that ambitious??"

I don't know if Maggie (bosslady) heard that or if she just is perceptive enough to know what overt withdrawl means when I do it (doubt that), but moments later she stopped by my desk and we had this exchange---

MAGS: How ya doing?

ME: Oh. Just. . . DUCKY

MAGS: Not in a good mood?

ME: Not particularly

MAGS: Why is that?

ME: {I'm wanting to say "CAN YOU FUCKING GUESS??" but instead replied--} Hmm. Just on a WHIM, I suppose.

It BUGS me that management is being all sensitive with us and handling us so delicately. I can't help but wonder how much of that sensitivity is borne of genuine concern and how much of it is them thinking "We don't want another Brian Mackerel on our hands--yikes!!"

Nance was the worst. First off she was saying how she wanted us to train people in TX on the accounts/customers that we'd "bonded" with...y'know acquaint them with these customers' idiosyncrasies, or whatever. She was saying " So that the transition is as easy (by "easy" she means "seamless") for the customer as possible." and then she falters "Well of course it'll be different for them.. (then,attempting a feeble joke:) Everyone will have Texan accents..." To which I remarked "Ah..otherwise it'll be Sandra 2.0"
She kept reiterating how we should present this to the customers...that is, if we MUST present it at all. The recommended approach, if I understand her rightly, is to NEVER bring it up, but if (heaven forfend) it comes up in conversation we absolutely must broach the subject with the utmost impartiality and glad fucking tidings. It irks me that she apparently thinks we're going to go all Howard Beale on the customers. Actually, she probably wouldn't think up such an allusion, as I can't imagine her taking in an excellent movie like Network. Search me what the fuck she watches. If I were to speculate...well...I couldn't say for cinematic tastes, but Nance totally strikes me as a loyal Nancy Grace viewer. Not only because they share a first name either. Oh did I mention that-- the name "Nance" spelled N-A-N-C-E does *not* rhyme with "pants" it's pronounced "Nancy". I know the spelling of names is not the exact science that the spelling of nouns or adjectives or verbs is..but come on. If you insist on spelling your name so f***king MORONICALLY, than get set for people to botch the pronunciation, ok??

Since Howard Beale is my fave movie icon du jour. I'll post below his classic tirade... This dude is THE SHIT,yo....

Some foxy with your funny

Ok, so I NEEEED to be working on my resume and/or scouring the classifieds with a vengeance but I can't motivate myself to leave Funny or Die. It's ridiculous. Of all times for my procrastinating genes to go all hyperactive, this is NOT the best time.

I will get on that immediately after lunch. This I vow. Now, that vow is in writing so I must comply. . . .

This one I had to share. It's not tremendously hilarious (or, in today's parlance, it's not quite ROTFLMFAOHHOMGIFDOL**) but it's amusing, and (more importantly) it does provide a FINE Clive Owen fix... yumm-o

Just for the record the real Clive would never be so heartless. Actually the real life Mrs Owen-- I saw a paparazzi shot of her from OK! (or maybe it was US Weekly?) and she --forgive my cattiness-- was rather frumpy. But Clive is always saying such tender & sensitive things about her...

*rolling on the floor laughing my fucking ass off holy Hell oh my God I'm friggen' dying of laughter

YOU deserve a chuckle, mon ami

...for putting up with all this anxiety and distress I've been spewing. I hate to say it, but there's likely more to come. But I thought a little comedic respite was in order.
This I shall deliver in the form of three videos I ripped off of the Funny or Die website. That's one perk about impending termination: I've NO compunctions whatsoever about streaming video on company time /bandwidth.

I've arranged these vids in order of strangeness. They're all that oddball sort of funny (where I'm laughing hysterically and simultaneously saying to myself "What the FUCK am I laughing at here??") but you'll find the videos to be increasingly stranger as you scroll down. The first one is the FUNNIEST I think...probably you will recognize the good doc...

What I love best: "SWEETBERRY WINE!!" Was also rather amused by Dr Steve's astute insights re: orgies.

That one's creepy funny. Any type of person you find lurking in your dumpster is apt to be-uhhh-of the unsavory sort. But this guy has got to be one of the creepier members of that dumpster-lurking set.

Also a creepy sort of funny. I also think that one owes a good deal of its comedic worth to the repetition of the word "doo doo" set to such a catchy beat.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

things about impending termination: a short list

Sorry to drone on excessively about this lousy bullshit. It's uhh, kinda on my mind though.

1. RELOCATION-- This was an option put before me. They have a few openings to fill in the Texas customer care center and they were urging us to put in for the jobs. The co. would chip in up to $5000 toward relocation costs. Nance seemed to really think that Robin and I (in particular) would jump at this chance...simply because we are the only 2 in the department who are single sans dependents.
There is ONE THING that makes the idea of relocation to TX customer care appealing-- the job would be guaranteed. There is somewhat of a draw in that. But even though I loathe job hunting, find it to be a colossal pain in the ass, etc etc, I do believe I can do better than this job. I mean, for somebody to relocate for a job, it ought to be a GREAT job, an exceptional opportunity. This gig is neither.
Besides, there's the small matter of my family. I have long been torn over the whole settle in this area vs. go forth and explore debate. One part of me feels like I would LOVE to look into other geographical options. And yet, at the same time, the notion of moving away makes me think of my nieces & nephew growing up and changing and me only getting brief flashes of this process via email and sporadic visits and that just makes me heartsick. I would miss my sister terribly. I would, I'm sure, miss my parents too, but I even think I would worry about them even more than I'd miss them. Oh shit..this tangent is making me sad...I'm going to take a moment and try to regain my preferable previous disposition -- pissed off and bitter.

2.Hugs,Chocolate, Dinner-- Alriiiight, this makes me feel good and angry!!
When Nance has come to town previously, just for regular meetings or whatever, we've often gone out as a dept and had dinner on the company's dime. Well, we knew last week she was coming into town (but were clueless as to why) and had planned to go out to the Weathervane Mon night. But then Nance's arrival was delayed and, subsequently so was this dinner.
Then at this meeting, after breaking this shitty news to us, Nance says "We can have dinner tonight if you all want" Umm.. no thanks. Sure, there most definitely IS part of me that wants to wring every perk & peso outta this company that I can. However, I don't fancy the notion of breaking bread with the broad who just fired my fired ass. Maybe that's petty of me, but that's how I feel.

Later in the afternoon, there was a big bag of Lindt chocolates on our conference room table. So naturally, I gobbled up a couple of milk chocolate truffles. When there is chocolate to be had, I partake--this is like a hard-wired reflex. But moments later, I had an awful thought. I IMed Robin :"WHO were those chocolates from??" She confirmed my fear--NANCE had bestowed them. If I had known that , I wouldn't have touched the @!#$%ers. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE sweet delicious chocolate. Nevertheless, you keep your filthy severance truffles, Nance. F-ing choke on 'em.

And even later in the day, before she left to head to the airport she came around to offer goodbyes and sorrys to everyone. I heard her over the cubby wall talking with Lisa...then Robin.. Suddenly, it dawned me: oh holy HELL...she's fucking HUGGING everyone. I didn't want hugs from her when I was gainfully employed, how the hell does she think I feel NOW?

Look I realize it's NOT personal. I'm still miffed. I can't help it. Whatev.

I did (in case you were wondering) manage to eschew the hug. I availed myself of a few unsubtle nonverbal cues-- crossed my arms and pulled my chair right tight up to my desk (edge of the desk jutting into my abdomen). That was enough to tip her off that I wasn't keen on hugging. Which is good, because if she had gone in for a hug, I might've had to "check" her like some hockey ruffian.

3. No tears-- It's totally warped of me to be so gratified over this. But I did NOT cry. I have not cried. At the meeting, I sat between Laurel & Robin--both weeping copiously. I was eating a bag of mini muffins and acting as envoy of the communal box of Kleenex.

4. I have decided to NOT tell my parents about this foul development until after I've gotten another gig. My sister was surprisingly supportive of this idea when we met for lunch. She's usually telling me how I suppress too much and trying to get me to be more forthcoming. I guess she just must see the undeniable logic of keeping my parents uninformed.

5.And finally--THE SILVER LINING. I went out for dinner & drinks last night with Roxanne and Heather and it was *just* what I needed. I am very fortunate in a lot of ways-- all the ways that really matter, y'know?
In addition to all my friends being totally wonderful, I also had a reminder of how much worse things could be. On my lunch break, I had to run to Borders to return Wives & Daughters (the copy I ordered came in with a CRACKED DISC! How pissed was I? But that wound up being another high point of the day, because the Borders clerk was totally cool and easy to work with --he was pretty easy on the eyes too, come to think of it) anyways, while at Borders I ran into Greg's sister and her aunt (whom she was quite close to) just died. She'd been terminal with cancer for a while and passed away just last week. Well, I'd been grousing about my job situation (jobless situation) and it suddenly occurred to me that I had never offered my condolences. I am crap about sending cards, so of course, I'd not done that. So in the middle of my griping I stop and offer up a very clumsy "Oh, and I was REALLY SORRY to hear about your Aunt Joyce" (lame, right?) and gave her a hug.
Anyways, that interlude got me to thinking on how really insignificant my complaints were. It's a pain in the ass to be sure, but certainly not the worst of predicaments!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


What a lousy fucking morning.

Let me share with you a letter bestowed upon me in a meeting this morning...

First off, you'll notice-- if you have superhuman attention to detail--that this letter is dated 2002. Brilliant. And although I have blocked out the last name of the executioner here, you're going to have to take my word for it that her last name was misspelled in the header. I mean I have an innate tendency to focus in on grammatic faux pas, but these particular errors irk me exceedingly. I mean, it's nice to know they went to such exhaustive ends to proofread this letter(...she sniped sardonically). It shows you just how important they think it is. It shows you...that I work for morons. WHY do I work for morons? Why have I worked here for this long? To get a g.d. watch?

I'm not 100% disappointed. Which is not to say I'm fucking ELATED about it either. I mean, I can see how, ultimately, this may shake down to be a positive turn of events. But I'm not going to commence feeling warm & fuzzy until I come out the other end of the proverbial tunnel...with a job (ideally a BETTER PAYING JOB).

This was no surprise. When we were hired on we were forewarned of this possibility. So it's been 5 yrs of waiting for this guillotine blade to fall. You half-expect it all the time, but you push it to the back of your mind. So it did..I don't startled me. But it wasn't--for any of us-- a shock. As soon as I walked in this morning's meeting, and saw HR presence there my little inner Sandra said "Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck" I knew this was it. The blade was dropping.

I get a $2000 bonus to stay on this ship until it's fully sunk. You can bet your shiny heiny I WILL avail myself of that. I'll be a faithful rat right 'til the end. I'm out for every red cent I can glean from this company. Even the once-red ones that are tarnished and sticky with gunk.

They say the transition is going to take up to 60 days. That's 60days to find a new on my blasted resume. I DETEST resume writing. Pardon my being tiresome, but it bears reiteration: Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck.

Ugggh...this day is making me queasy.

Monday, February 18, 2008

artists and muses

Happy Prez Day Birthday to John Hughes & Molly Ringwald!! Is it not utterly BIZARRO that these 2 share a birthday? I think so. I imagine Hughes viewed it as an omen and it only cemented his obsession with her. I've always had the strong impression he was obsessed with Molly, but to really be fair, I must confess I don't know where I picked up that notion . I think it was from either an E! True Hollywood Story OR some retro rehash served up on VH1. Hey, perhaps it's mere coincidence that their big rift dates to the year 1986.. . .the very same year Mol turned 18. Also in 1986, Molly turned down the Amanda Jones role in Some Kind of Wonderful (not Hughes-directed but he did write it...awesome flick-I heartily recommend) and also apparently said some disparaging things about him to the press. And *officially* 'twas this double "dis" that caused Hughes to be disenchanted forevermore. Ringwald, supposedly, was trying to distance herself from Hughes roles because she felt she'd grown out of 'em, didn't want to be "pigeonholed", you know..that whole schpiel. But maybe...just maybe...she wanted to distance herself from Hughes himself once she was fair game, legally speaking. Perhaps she saw he was suppressing lecherous intentions and feared he would suppress 'em no longer. Or it could be both-- avoidance of typecasting and mauling. Or just the typecasting thing. Or neither. I merely speculate. As a 9 year old in 1986, I was spending so much of my time in Mrs Lane's 4th grade classroom that I didn't get to mingle with the Brat Pack as much as I'd have liked.

In the field of fine arts we've another cool Feb 18 birthday: Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933). How awesomely unusual a middle name is that anyways? It blends pretty well with his whole name, but I don't know that just anybody could bear that middle name without it sounding odd. Takes some of the focus off his prissy last name, I suppose. I thought it interesting that Tiffany's padre -- Charles Lewis Tiffany (1812-1902)--was born on Feb 15. Even nuttier..the father died on his son's 54th birthday. Charles was famous for starting up the famous Tiffany & Co jewelry store in 1837. And probably L C could've just assimilated himself into the family biz and made quite a COMFORTable living for himself, but he would up making a name for himself in the art nouveau movement, particularly with his stained glass work (although he also painted and designed jewelry). Of course I shall make with the visual aides...the necklaces above were credited to him. Also, you'll see below some of his stained glass work that I particularly dug...

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Dem bones, dem bones...

My niece Lucy cracks me up. She has got to be the funniest 3 yr old on the planet. Truly.

Laura was telling me she had them out on Wednesday. They were in transit, all in the van, when suddenly an excretory emergency arose. It wasn't just "Mommy I need tah go potty" it was Lucy bawling because she had to poop so bad. So Laura makes a sudden and unplanned stop at WalMart. Luckily my mom was with her, so she could leave the other 3 kids in the van with her. So at least she didn't have to wait for all the kids to disembark from the van and then shepard the whole troupe into the store. That can be a bit of a process...not terribly time-consuming but y'know every second counts when you're about to let loose a deuce. As, surely, you have realized at some juncture(s) of your life.

Anyways...she's hustling Lucy in the store and is not wholly confident that they'll make it on time. But --thank goodness-- they do. Laura plops Lucy down on the toilet and...shockingly...she hesitates. Laura's like "Come on Luce, don't you have to poop??" And Lucy looks at her, still a bit teary, and very seriously implores her: "DON'T LET MY BONES COME OUT!"


OK I know I shouldn't laugh , that this the poor little muffin was sincerely worried about shitting out her skeleton, which , y'know in the early months of one's toilet using career, well, perhaps it seems quite plausible. But I'm projecting in this amusement of mine...looking to the future...this tale will someday be valuble . Years and years after this scary episode, this will be a prized addition to the ol' anecdote archives. Gee, particularly when Lucy's about 13 or 14 years old, how she will LOVE to be regaled with this story !! In front of friends from school even, if that could be arranged...

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Alarming Case of Monsieur Mackerel

Thursday morning when I drove down Benning St (a street which culminates in my company's parking lot) I noticed a police cruiser parked in the pull off. I thought : Wooahh, the po-po! What's THAT all about?
but I really didn't suspect anything more sinister than a speed trap.


As I'm doing my first inbox sweep of the day, I open up this email from the head of HR. Addressed to everyone at the NH site, it read : "Effective immediately Brian Mackerel * does not work for Thermal Dynamics. DO NOT let Brian in the building. The Lebanon police are assisting us in this matter."

{ *not his real name. Real surname withheld in case -just in case-reports of Brian's SEVERE shadiness have been exaggerated* }

Yikes. Fuckin' A. I have very few acquaintances among the production staff (where Brian once worked) and so I've not the slightest clue what this dude even looks like. It would be soo like me to forget, and because of my hard-wired habit of holding the door for anyone trailing along behind me, I'd be apt to let in any Tom , Dick, or mad MACKEREL off the street. I'm thinkin': I'll just confine myself to the vicinity of my own desk today. Heey, bet there is enough scrap metal out in the plant to convert this li'l cubicle into a panic room of sorts...

So after work, I'm walking across a dark empty parking lot to my car. I hear a truck behind me. So I veer off to the left so I'm not in the path of travel and this truck can go around me. Hmmm.. nothin's passing me by. I "prick up " my ears... notice that this truck is just creeeeeping at a snail's pace. I expect, then, that it's going to park soon. But no. Keeps moving. Verrrrry slowly. It then hits me: Aggh! It's Brian fucking Mackerel, driving slow because he's reloading his 12gauge!! Haul ass to that Taurus before he can pick you off!! And I did quicken my pace slightly, but luckily I glanced over my shoulder before I broke into a dead run. ..

A mid-size plowtruck was salting the parking lot. And actually, that was a somewhat alarming turn of events right there. I know we've seen at least 10 people fall on their ass in that parking lot from our office windows. I doubt maintenence has expended so much as a 1/2 tablespoon of salt on that bastard all winter. Seriously, there are skating rinks with better traction. OF COURSE, I thought it was Mackerel.

Then, this morning Benning Street and our entire shoddily salted parking lot were utterly cruiser free. So apparently--I am to presume-- the crisis is past. No follow up email on the issue. But hey that's cool. It's ever so much more exciting to be left in suspense, don'tcha think?

OK so, (in case your Sarcasmeter needs callibrating) I'm NOT effing serious. Gawd, especially with that madness over in Illinois all over the news. I'd like to know conclusively that this absence of police presence today means that this guy is DETAINED somewhere. ..

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Mediocre chat--not my BEST banter work..

who LOVES ya baby?

I do! And I love Valentines theory. In my life,'s shaking down like any other Thursday. No huge shocker there. But still...the ideal of Valentine's Day still makes me sigh a twitterpated sigh...refer to Monday's post ie: my treacly tendencies.

Naturally today would be the apex of this masochistically romantical state I've been in as of late. And so, accordingly, I'm really trying to OD. Prior to commencing my post I was reading LOVE POETRY on Old Poetry whilest listening to opera on my iPod. I'm thinkin' my links sidebar needs at least one poetry site. Well, you can scrounge up poetry on Bartleby, I suppose....

Oh and before the poetry jam, I was on some of my fave fine art sites looking for some grand image for my desktop. Yeeeeah, something grand and Valentine's themed. First off , lemme show you the rather sexy pattern that was gracing my PC desktop..

In case you was wondering, I discovered that on THIS site, which is a brilliant place to go if you're hunting for a vintage pattern. I don't know that you would be, but I often am.
Anyways... I wanted to go with something totally dissimilar to this for my new desktop. I chose this painting by Sir Frank Dicksee off of Art Magick and it's not as heavily schmoopy as I might have gone for...

There's some love here, for sure (at least on her side). But clearly this guy has somehow f*cked up. I could ascertain that much, even if Dicksee hadn't titled this "The Confession". But it's also clear that she is SO going to forgive him.

And here be one of the poems I was enjoying. A lot more contemporary than the artwork (which I point out as a means of sayin' "Behold what marvelous RANGE I have in my diversions! Woo woo!")

Today's desk calendar page heading sez "On The Heart" and then below it has on it a litany of love/heart related trivia nug-lets. Most of them are underwhelming but there were 2 I rather liked- - -

1. "It was said, in Elizabethan times , that the heart is drained by sighs and groans"

I made a point of sharing this one with my office mates because we are constantly walking around this cubicle farm emitting the most put-upon sounding sighs. A fact that has been noticed & commonly acknowledged. I had told them this and then further remarked "Now this expains why we're such miserable bitches around here. ..drained hearts from all that sighing we do!"

2. "Nineteenth century superstition advised those girls anxious to dream of their future husbands to KILL A PIGEON and remove its heart. Then to skewer the heart with pins and place it under their pillows before walking backwards into bed to sleep."

Hmmm...not something I'm apt to try. Not so much because it's out of vogue or because I'm not desparate, but it's my aversion to birds that precludes it. I certainly wouldn't grieve over a dead pigeon (nor over a dozen dead pigeons for that matter...) but the necessary stalking & capture of that pigeon would put me on unbearably close terms with the nasty beastie. I just couldn't.

We were discussing this point...debating whether or not it's crucial that the lovelorn practitioner of this rite kills the bird herself. I mean, could it not work if I-- er, I mean, she procured the pigeon heart via the black market??

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

slippin' & a slidin'

This morning's commute was HELLACIOUS, people!! But as I am intrepid as they come, I donned my St Christopher medal, warm threads, and set out. As I backed out of the garage and down the drive, the whole of my attention was fixated behind me, I was all zoned in on trying to not to go into a backwards, downhill 180 spin (as I did earlier this season) and aiming ever so carefully for *not* the snowbank. So when I got headed out on the road and-at last- turned and looked at my windshield , I was unpleasantly surprised to find that said windshield was a totally opaque sheet of ice. I had about an inch & a half long clearing I could see through. My windshield wipers (my well chosen & artfully installed new wipers, that is) were a-goin', but without my windshield being warmed up they were just scraping over the sheet of ice. So I had to park for a bit and gain some visibility. When I did finally get going I managed okay ...this is because I go insanely slowly. There was this nerve wracking episode with an 18wheeler that was making the merge onto I 89S (coming from I-91 N) but I handled that okay (pheeew!).

So I figured, after braving such treacherous impediments to get here today, that I should get beaucoup " points" merely for showing up...thereby giving me a license to slack off. Yes, I am prone to slacking everyday, but today I felt entitled. Oh, I suppose my boss being on vaca this week contributed somewhat to this feeling.

And then --in this mood-- I discover that some Austen fiend had uploaded the entire Sense & Sensibility mini on to YouTube. This would be the 2007 BBC production...the one that I would have to wait until March for if I am to see it on my local PBS (via Masterpiece Theater). I came thisclose to watching that today. Of course I would've been on the phone, & paused the player for any customer phone calls, but still... that is a mighty BOLD exercise in slacking. Ultimately, I didn't have stones for it. I started to watch, got about midway through opening credits before I said "Aw damn it, I CAN'T. Even *I* can't goof off so egregiously!!"

Speaking of that type of movie (and my compulsive consumption of them), I couldn't find a damned thing on the telly last night so I wound up watching Persuasion again. Of course, I enjoyed it very much, but it pains me to be so lamely repetitive. . . .

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

more purchases..

Lemme say at the outset of this post, that you are fully justified in not giving a shit. I'm getting in to real minutiae here....

I've had a touch of a sore throat this afternoon. Just on the right side, actually. Does that signal swollen glands? Anyways... in lieu of a lozenge I thought a beverage might help matters. My best pick in the cafeteria vending machine looked to be chocolate milk. So as I walk back to my desk with my Shamrock Farms brand 12 fl oz reduced fat chocolate milk, my anticipation builds. Yep, Sanny, affirms my interior monologue, That's the ticket there. Uhh HUH. Cooold chocky milky--this'll be JUST the thing. Ohh yeaaah.

But THEN... I am confronted with this utter BASTARD of a foil seal. I have availed myself of many bottled chocolate milks of varied brands in my day, and NEVER have I encountered so stubborn a foil seal!! I was not immediately vexed.. but after it resisted peeling off by my fingers and then would not be plied off by my teeth (which, by the way, OUCH) then I was miffed. I summoned my inner evolved primate and sought out what is called a tool. My scissors were handy, and because I was worked up into such a frenzy I brandished them blades like I was Norm Bates in full drag.

So yeah...this is ultimately a sort of PSA. If you ever come across Shamrock Farms brand 12 fl oz. milk and happen to purchase aforesaid milk....well just prepare yourself for the struggle of your life.

I think that obdurate seal might have something to do with this milk's INSANE sell by date. This milk has a 3/24/08 sell by date. Does that seem peculiar to anyone but me??

CHECK yo'self b4 ya wreck yo'self...

A'right, I don't want y'all to think that I am ENTIRELY frivolous... so I should mention that last night I also went to Walmart & bought new wiper blades. My father urged me to go to AutoZone because they'll install 'em for free. Oh, pish, whatev. I can replace wiper blades on my own. Going to Walmart wasn't totally an act of happens to be in the same plaza as Borders and I didn't fancy going across town to AutoZone. I'm all about "one-stop shopping" y'know.

Honestly though, I did have a spot o' difficulty replacing those wiper blades. It's not a terribly complicated procedure or anything like that but the trouble was the old blades' condition (frozen & rusted) and my fingers' condition (just frozen). But eventually I managed it. GIRL POWER!! WOOOO!

In other practical purchasing news, I am in the market for new checks. I just
finished off my 2nd box of these checks...their theme was sort of the fads & events of the 20th century. There were 7 designs: years 1900-1920 /yrs 1920-1930/1930-40/1940-50/1950-60/1960-70/1970-80/1980-90/and 1990-99 and like the 30s one had a pic of FDR on it and there was, I think, a TV dinner on the 50s check and that sorta thing. It was a cool theme for about a 1/2 box worth of checks but I eventually I got bored as hell with 'em. I was very relieved when I wrote out the very LAST 20th ce. check the other day.

So, because I wanted checks that visually stimulate me (and don't become tiresome too quickly) and also because a check is somewhat like a modern day calling card (shouldn't say "modern day" as checks are pretty passé these days) I took a good hunk of time today deliberating over what design to get. I still have not decided. I actually pasted screen caps of all my most favoritest styles to an email which I sent out to my coworkers -seeking their input. I have no intention to go by what they tell me, but I find that sometimes an outside ruling helps you to really weed out what you don't want...

So, some standout check designs...

"Fresco" design from the Check Gallery. This design is very pretty. I do like 'em. But I feel like these checks tell people: "I AM BORING". Which is pretty much true, but I don't wish to broadcast that.

Argyle checks from Styles Check co. I love argyle. It's high up there on my "fave patterns" mental list ...probably it's 4th on there, right after the Matheson tartan (a sentimental favorite), houndstooth check & herringbone. But I feel like, after going through 2 boxes of these, I will utterly HATE argyle. Plus, these are a bit on the boring side too.

KISS checks --also from Styles. Ideal for covering business expenses when you're dispatching with commissions handed down to you by your superior officer in the KISS army. Ha! Be sure to sheath these in a matching KISS logo leather checkbook cover.
Styles has a small category of "super fan" designs where you can get checks with your favorite rock star on 'em , WWE personality,or country singer (there was a shitload of country music checks available..blecch! But it follows that there would be some NASCAR checks offered too. This, shockingly, was NOT the case. What gives, dudes??) I can understand the inclusion of KISS in the "rock star" subsection (they ARE legends), but the other offerings were just silly. Who the f is ordering PANTERA CHECKS, I'd like to know?? Oh, and in a similar vein (that being bewilderingly obscure check designs) Styles also sells Elvira checks. You heard correct: ELVIRA CHECKS. Who the hell orders those?? I mean besides those Oakridge Boys-- who are infamously fond of her ("hearts on fire" reportedly...)
Anyways, I like KISS and these checks definitely don't fall into the dread "boring" category. But I don't like KISS that much. Perhaps I'd consider it if all 4 designs had shots of the fabled Simmons TONGUE...

"Fernando" checks...again from Styles. I must concede, those guys are awesome over at Styles. Normally, I would skip the "Animal" category altogether, but I thought-- wtf, I'll just take a quick peek. I was surprised to find these bizarro checks in that group. These crack me up. But I think they would only crack me up for a very limited time.

Styles also sells Las Vegas checks. These are totally foxy checks. But I feel like I have no business having Vegas checks as I don't live in or even remotely near Vegas, have never visited there, have no immediate plans to visit...
Still, they are quite attractive.. . .

I like these Flower Fairies checks from Classic Checks. I have admired Cicely Mary Barker's illustrations before. I don't think I can do any fairy themed checks though. It's the whole checks-as-representation concept...a fairy theme would imply to people that I harness the healing powers of crystals and have some gross new agey lower back tattoo... y'know, that whole type. I can't allow that...

These Beatrix Potter checks are a real front runner. Aren't they a-freakin'-DORABLE?? I don't know if it's a positive representation of yours truly but everything it implies is true-- I am hopelessly regressed ..also a Brit wannabe.

From Image Checks you can buy My Little Pony checks. I guess that's all I wanted to point out-- that you can buy My Little Pony checks. And I love that fact. But this is like the KISS checks. I'm not that into My Little Ponys. Although I would DEFINITELY buy these if I were opening a checking account for my niece Sadie.

I love me some PLAID. But only ONE design? Really, folks? I know checks are-as I've said-- passé. But a little friggen' EFFORT, wouldja? These are noteworthy because plaid is innately awesome-- prevented from being a real contender on account of there being just 1 design. Now, if I was able to personalize and order in my clan tartan then this would shoot up to the top 3 of the contender list.
I think Laura had these checks at one time...and not all that long ago either. She has different ones now (I know this since she just gave me a check on Saturday) They really go thru a lotta checks those guys. Those 20th century checks I just polished off?? I've had those since the dawn of time or thereabouts. No kidding. 2 boxes last me FOREVAH.

"Founding Fathers" checks...also a front runner in my mind. Seriously, I love these. I feel like you may be scoffing because there was a deal of scoffing amongst my coworkers. Heather got my email and she said "Oooh you found some good ones.." then there was a pause and she goes "wait--what the hell are these OLD GUY CHECKS??" Lisa recognized the theme, but she said "Ugh. Yuck on the Founding Fathers checks."
But Robin was with me in appreciating these checks. Well, peer support or no, I think they're just terrif...

"Emerald Isle" checks from Identity Checks. I also scoped out some scenic England checks they offered and some "Bonnie Scotland".. but I thought they got their best shots of Ireland. I would love to visit (or retire to??) any of those countries so I feel more entitled to using these checks (than the Vegas ones). Although my concern is that gazing regularly at these lovely vistas would make me all wistful and --ultimately-- discontent.

Well, more discontent than I already am, I mean....

I was grousing aloud to the office-- you get what, 4 books per box o' checks (I don't quite recall. As I've said it's been ages since I've had to order checks) I wish one of these check companies would allow you to mix styles within a box. WHY on earth isn't this offered ?? Robin's answer to that question (WHY?) is probably the truth. She figures there's just not much demand for such thing ...because few people AGONIZE over check selection like I do...

I'm in the Mood for Loooove....

...simply because I'm masochistic...

So yeah, after yesterday's neurotic rants I decided that I deserved a trip to Borders. I had been enjoying some books by Lauren Willig, and some amazon reviewer of one of her novels brought up this other author Georgette Heyer. I wanted to track down something by Heyer (the essential pretense of my whole Borders expedition). They really made the decision easy for me by only having one title in store (I bought "An Infamous Army") So far (I'm only about 1/2 way through the 1st chapter) the writing is a bit dull, but I'm going to be fair & reserve judgement...give the story a bit of time to really pick up. But just from browsing through Heyer's catalog on Amazon, I'll grant her this : she has some good titles. Y'know, classy sounding stuff --in a relatively trashy genre. She had a 50+ year career during which she wrote a buttload of historical romances. Yep, reading material perfectly suited to this week's masochistic-romantical mindset. Brilliant.

Another similar purchase that I perpetrated-- the DVD of Persuasion ( the recent Masterpiece Theater /BBC co-production). You'll remember last month how inordinately miffed I was that I missed the beginning. Well I am now owner of the ENTIRE thing so all's well that ends well, yes? Oh, and I also ordered something from one of Border's computer kiosks (I really ought not shop in a self-pitying state of mind...makes me overindulgent) It was the DVD of Wives & Daughters that I've been eyeing FOREVER (hell, it's been on my Amazon wish list since 2005) My confirmation email sez if it doesn't come in to my local Borders by 2/18/08 then I get it for FREE when it does arrive. Sweet, eh? So it's a unique situation of eagerly anticipating something to get here late. Well, reasonably late, I should qualify... if the Borders staffer sez "Looks like the ETA on your ordered DVD is , ahhh, mid April 2012" then I'd rather pay for it. Although I've let it languish on my wish list for nearly 3yrs...I don't know why I'm all impatient now.

So of course I watched Persuasion as soon as I got home... well maybe not quite immediately..I first watched an episode of The New Adventures of Old Christine and THEN I put in Persuasion. It is very fave of the the three new productions I saw during Jane Austen January. I liked it just a nano-smidgen more than I liked Northanger Abbey (which was also really great and shall--inevitably-- be purchased by me) Mansfield Park was likable enough but not exceptionally stellar. It differed a lot from the 1999 big screen
version (which I preferred) but I am not sure which one is more faithful to the novel (I picked up The Complete Novels of Jane Austen compendium last month but thus far have only finished off Sense & Sensibility )
But I hath digressed. I wanted to share with you the big climactic romantic denouement from Persuasion. It's a bit of a spoiler, but if you didn't already know that the heroine winds up with Mr PERFECT after a totally perfunctory detour with Mr Charming-but-Wrong, then you're a complete Austen neophyte, and odds are you navigated away from this page a paragraph or so ago.

Anyways, it's not going to be a trend with me to give away the endings of every period drama I watch (even if I did it with Northanger and am doing it now) It's just that this one kinda cracked me up. I mean, it's sufficiently romantic (as it ought to be). But it was also pretty amusing...probably unintentionally so.

So first off, poor Anne practically runs a marathon ( I would have dropped after a block )and she's panting like maaad and probably on the verge of a swoon but she is keeping a vise-like grip on that least until she gets her g.d. kiss. And she is like, straining at the bit for that kiss. She looks like she might bite him! And in response to that, he opts to execute a head descent in SUPER SLOW slo-mo. I mean, ridiculously slow. He starts the lean in..and then you could leave the room and make yourself a sammich and return before there is actual lip contact. He might be just the tiniest bit still mad at her and want to punish her.

Monday, February 11, 2008

stupid Cupid last night I read this historical romance (with a dash of "spy story" thrown in...y'know..for a modicum of respectability) . Read the whole 300+ page thing in one day, so I guess that indicates I was kinda into it. I HATE when stuff like that gets to me, because simultaneously I do realize these writers (of novels/of romantic comedies, et al..) are manipulating me with the most vapid, most RIDICULOUS clap-trap..but nonetheless...I am like a moth to the flame with that shit. I mean, I really do have the fluffiest most idealistic Stay-Puft marshmallow heart, and I'm resigned to this fact. I just don't like it when said marshmallow heart is overtly gooooing all over the damn place. And I try to avoid such mess whenever possible.

So perhaps reading the novel chipped a wee chink in the ol' armor, because then this morning I'm driving in to work and my iPod is shuffling thru the music library and starts playing "Let's Face The Music and Dance" And I find myself replaying it twice and gushing over how I just LOVE this song and GAWWWD isn't it SOO romantic? And then--the next natural step-- I'm ruminating on how blasted VALENTINE'S DAY is this week. I have sick , sad relationship with V-day. I oscillate between thinking it's a sadistic ASSHOLE of a holiday and sincerely loathing it and (most of the time) acting like I loathe it when I secretly kind of love it and want in on all that schmoopy goodness. So after remembering the imminence of V-day and all that that entails, I spent the bulk of my commute steeping in a marinade of my own self-pity.

And then, I come in and (venting a little) one of my first remarks to my coworkers is : "Oh, and this week we have--puke--Valentine's Day" And Heather says "TELL ME ABOUT IT!" To which I say (much more gruffly than I'd wanted to) "Oh shut up!" And I know it's totally backward for me to come in--initiate some Valentine's Day bashing...and then snap the head off o' the first person who agrees with me. But it was just that the first agree-er was Heather --as in cute, 26 year old, celebrating her 1st anniversary with her handsome hubby this May Heather. And I felt like one of those tragic kids in a Sally Struthers commercial (but like 20X thicker of course) with Heather telling me " Oh, rice-yuck! Overrated!!"

Ugh, well that's melodramaticizing it to the extreme. Let's just say instead, I was looking for commiseration from other quarters. But still, I felt bad instantly. I mean I know it was just 3 li'l words, but it was all my TONE and that tone was scary rabid. I apologized profusely and issued a general warning that I expected to be all kinds of outta sorts this week.

You know what EXTRA sucks about this Valentine's Day? My sister is planning a Valentine's Day dinner and I already promised to come. I can't logically explain why but attending this dinner seems to me vastly more pathetic than flying solo for Valentine's Day. And I think by flying here, what I really mean is some stereotypical means of self-medicating. I mean, I don't go in much for ice cream in the cold winter months, so that rules out the pint of Ben & Jerry's but I definitely feel a bottle of wine and watching the entire Pride & Prejudice mini would not be outta the question.

I also thought I'd like to do something reckless on Valentine's Day...I feel that to be true but have no specific idea on what I mean by that. Of course 'round these monotonous parts the opportunities for Thursday night recklessness are slim to nil. And honestly, I don't have much of a talent for much as I'd like to.

So the reckless gesture is rather implausible. But I do think there is something noble and beatific about a good solo sulk. I should be looking at it differently, being grateful for the free dinner and glad that I have a close knit family and rationally those seem like 2 very good arguments but I just ain't feelin' 'em. I'm just kinda dreading Thursday night dinner. Which is weird, and wrong, and ungrateful of me but as I warned my office comrades, looks like I'm going to be all outta sorts this week.

So after sniping at Heather, I pop online and right off I spot a news story that rather fits in with the morning's motif of romantic reveries. I'm not clear what this story is trying to tell me. Be careful what you wish for? Naah.. that's just a jaded & bitter take on it. Although, you can't really scrounge up a silver lining here. It's a horribly sad thing...

Oh, and lest I forget we're just days away from V-day I get the below email--

Time to come on down and collect my FREE Toothface Cupid pint glass. Well, free--ostensibly only with a purchase of $10 or more. But I've always had the sense that if you went thru the hassle of printing the free pint glass coupon and going to the store but came up to the register saying "I'm sorry, I really couldn't find anything to buy. Can I still have the free glass?" they'd hand it over sans argument. And despite my myriad of V-day neuroses, I should run over and grab me one of these. I have a Toothface Turkey Pilgrim pint glass I got from Newbury Comics around Thanksgiving time and I drink out of that thang incessantly.

Perhaps this is JUST the thing, eh? Perhaps what I really need is to dilute this bouillabaisse of self-pity with many toothface cupid pint glasses full of alcohol....
A few posts back , I got to wondering about who would be "playing"KITT in this abysmal looking NBC Knight Rider revival. I finished my ramblings with a promise to figure out via IMDB just who was voicing the dream car. Well, although I did hasten to IMDB, as I said I would, I never reported back. That's because I read that KITT was to be voiced by Will Arnett. I don't actively dislike Will Arnett but...mehh. I thought those findings to be un-blog-worthy.

However , I read this morning that there has been a sudden, after-the-fact KITT recast (it's as if they heard my "mehh" reaction...but actually it was a conflict of interest snafu, that you'd think would have been foreseeable at the outset of this project) This news has got me somewhat excited now for what, I'm sure, is still an insipid piece of dreck. I'm pretty curious as to why he stooped to doing this... I mean it does seem like stooping, does it not? 'Tis a puzzling career choice. Perhaps this is leverage for something better OR maybe Kilmer made NBC dish out beaucoup moolah to his top charity (apt to be the New Mexico National Parks Dept or something akin to that).

Saturday, February 09, 2008


Went out to Sophie & Zeke's tonight to celebrate (belatedly) my sister's birthday. I don't know if it's Sophie & Zeke's custom to make REDUNKULOUSLY STRONG drinks or if it had somethin' to do with me not eating anything prior to going out but...DANG! I had one appletini and one pomegranate cosmo and I was WRECKED. Actually, I was beyond buzzed after the appletini and I shoulda quit right there....while I was still somewhat coherent.

Had intended to blog about a number of things tonight-- Ash Wednesday and McSkillet burritos and my coworker Lisa and Japanese food...but I'm going to have to defer that 'til the next episode because I can't focus for shit, man....
G'night all....

Thursday, February 07, 2008

random TV reminiscence

Just perusin' around on Retrojunk and was reminded... THIS SHOW had some of the best intro theme music ever...


Sorry Chinese people, for picking on your big holiday. I mean, it's not like we have a Chinese Thanksgiving or Chinese Valentine's Day...Chinese New Year is pretty much IT, and there I go being all GLIB about it. Deplorable of me...really! And jinkies...if I had to pick a nation to offend I should have gone with a less intimidating, (and less POPULOUS) one.

Ohh, you noxious bastards from Pitcairn Island...

In all seriousness, I love Chinese New Year and I'd probably love Pitcairn (and its entire populace of about 50 people) Every Chinese New Year I get excited thinking mebbe it's the year of the snake again (I happen to be a ssssnake. It's the most awesomest sign of the whole Chinese Zodiac system. Ask anyone..) Not sure when the next snake year is, but this year is YEAR OF THE RAT. According to my 08 zodiac forecast, the Year of the Rat is 'sposed to be fairly
rad for snakes too.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Obscure Celeb Birthday for 2/6

Born on Feb 6, 1914-- THURL RAVENSCROFT...

I mean, right at the outset here, you know you're in for something fabulous. Thurlly, you'll agree that that is one awesome moniker (ha haa haa). As if "Thurl" wasn't sufficiently wonderful, you then get hit w/ tha "RAVENSCROFT" part....comin' off all like some ancestral manse in a Gothic primetime soap opera. Sweeet. So just with that name you've secured your admission in the Awesome Hall o' Fame. But the fellow couldn't stop there...he had to go become ACCOMPLISHED.

Perhaps--just perhaps-- you're acquainted with a li'l known feline by the name of TONY. . .THE TIGER. Yep... this very one--

Welllll, Thurl Ravenscroft was the voice of Tony the tiger (until he died in 2005, that is) And that's not all, mis amigos...

He was the vocalist for the song "You're a Mean One, Mr Grinch" even though that song is frequently miscredited to Boris Karloff (awesome in his own right, but NOT the performer of that song). Did you realize that was Tony the Tiger singin' that? Boggles the nog, doesn't it??

Another gem in the Ravenscroft ouevre (that I particularly adore) is that he voiced one of the animal heads that hang in Country Bear Hall (in Frontierland at DisneyWorld---most esteemed venue of The Country Bear Jamboree) namely Buff the Buffalo. Behold--

I SO love me some Country Bear Jamboree. The actual jamboree that is, not that crappy 2002 movie. Although that crappy movie DID have Christopher Walken in it...and something with Christopher Walken in it can't be entirely bad. But uggh... The Country Bear movie is as close to entirely bad as something featuring Mr Walken can be. ...

tee time

I wiled away some time yesterday on the 80s Tees website, where I found a slew of tees that I dug. For your further enlightenment here is that slew ...after all, there's only 7 more shopping days before Valentine's Day. And a humorous tee is ALWAYS appreciated...

**click image for full page expand

1. It's not as if I ever watch Chuck Norris movies, and it's not as if I can sit through any duration of Walker Texas Ranger without throwing up in my mouth a little. Therefore, I don't exactly appreciate Chuck Norris as an actor/ action star. But I inexplicably ADORE C-Nor as a punchline. For instance, this page is quite amusing and this vid is AWWWESOME .

2. Did Yoda promote literacy at any point in the Star Wars saga? I don't recall him doing so, but I LIKE IT. I can't think of a better cause for the li'l guy to champion...

3. Just in case you didn't know . . . WYLD STALLIONS RULE!!

4. I actually had a Sloth shirt...but not this one. I got a big armpit hole in it and that escalated into me ripping the sleeves off. And so it was for a while my icky sticky hot weather bedtime tee (as it was too to' up--literally-- for donning in public) But then I lost it. I still feel the void...that gaping, tragic void. Ideally I would replace it with the exact same Sloth tee...but this one may suffice.

5. Good shirt...only thing needed to make it *GREAT* is the addition of the phrase "Truly, truly,truly outrageous" somewhere on here

6. I actually have this shirt so it didn't need to be in the tee shirt wish list collage. I just couldn't resist GLOATING over what a kick-ass Fred Sanford tee shirt I own.

7. There were quite a lot of Little Miss/ Little Mr tees on this site but the 2 shown here are my favorites. This one would be the #1 fave though. What was Little Miss Splendid's deal anyways?? No, that's not a snide rhetorical query...I really don't know. I didn't have that book. Was she snobby??

8. They had a retro-video /computer games section on this site and I looked for Oregon Trail on a whim, not really expecting to find it. But --voila!-- here you have it. All their Oregon Trail tees are really archaic looking screen caps from the very 1st version of OT. This one pictured is the silliest. I would be reluctant to wear a shirt proclaiming "YOU HAVE DIED OF DYSENTERY" if only a miniscule sector of the general populace is going to pick up on the allusion. I mean, this is just a nano-degree above having a shirt with the word "DIARRHEA" on it, and that-- eww.

But on the other hand... I have such fond Oregon Trail memories. I get the reference,anyways. And it's certainly not unlike me to joke solely for my own benefit. ..

9. I heart the flux capacitor. It happens to be my go-to imaginary part when I am goofing around , blathering away with make-believe tech jargon. Which happens more frequently than you'd think.

The only Back To the Future shirt that could top this : "I am your DENSITY" George McFly MADE that movie. That's why the 2 George McFly-less sequels are so sucky.

10. Ideally I'd like my Sixteen Candles themed tee to have the Long Duc Dong quote: "Oooh Sessy Guuuhlfweeend!" But, in lieu of that, this is okay.

11. I have vague recollections of the Ewoks in the original Star Wars, I don't even know fer sure if they were in Return o' the Jedi or Empire. But I taped Ewoks:The Battle for Endor off TV back in '85 (it's really sad! Her family dies!) and watched it approximately a trillion times. I remember thinkin' Cindal was the coolest girl's name EVER.

12. I really didn't think I'd find my favorite quote amongst the selection of Dirty Dancing shirts. Sure they had the considerably more popular "Nobody puts Baby in a corner!" and a hugely stupid tee that said "Johnny Castle taught me my moves" . But this one is undeniably the best--even if the Dirty Dancing connection is less than overt here.

13. This is good...but I later found #22 that I like better, referencing the same terrif SNL skit.

14. I ADORE this shirt. Seems like...if all kings were like King Friday, there wouldn't be any anti-monarchism sentiment in the world...there couldn't possibly be!

15. A tee of Christopher Walken dancing. Need I explain how that's excellent? I don't think I should have to. I do think H'wood should be cranking out more movie musicals. And then Walken can eschew crap roles in crap films (ie: BALLS OF FURY) and take on more dancing roles. In lieu of that, he could maybe take on a crap dancing role in a crap maybe as the headmaster of Dance Academy in Step Up IV: The Reckoning

Oh, if you wanna see some fine Walken moves, (even better than in that Fatboy Slim vid, I swear!) you should really rent the 1981 Steve Martin flick Pennies From Heaven.

16. The tee that started it all. We have a customer named Carmen who frequently calls in, and whenever she does Robin and I always call her "Carmen Sandiego" (unbeknownst to her) & crack jokes like "WHERE IN THE WORLD is she?? Put a trace on that call!" Which is TOTALLY lame but it has been known to be effective in making someone laugh and/or lose their composure when on the phone with a customer (and that's sort of a competitive sport 'round here). Anyways, we'd had a Carmen call on Tuesday and we were doing the customary jokes. And I suddenly got the nostalgic warm fuzzies about "Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?" and was telling the gang how I used to be kind of a rockstar at that game when I played it on my Apple IIGS once upon a time. And then I got to wondering what sort of retro Carmen Sandiego merchandising there was to be had out there. It was in this pursuit I wound up at 80s Tees and then began compiling the silly collage that lead to this worthless post.

17. "Beeee Goood"-- hands-down my favorite ET-ism. I know "Phone home" is the ubiquitous ET quote, but this I really prefer. I think he learns this from Gertie and the Speak 'n' spell and /or Sesame Street.

18. The sector of my heart devoted to Magnum P.I. loves this shirt too...but is too preoccupied with lamenting a certain hideous rumor to persuade me to buy this tee.

19. who doesn't heart Matt Foley? As long as there's going to be a "Chris Farley" subset of novelty tees, they oughtta immortalize the "Fat Guy in a Little Coat" bit from Tommy Boy. I love that!!

20. This was one of three Perfect Strangers tees available. One was an plain ol' pic of Larry & Balki that reads "Perfect Strangers" (less than hilarious, that) and the other one struck me as downright creepy. This one is the best o' what slim pickin's they got. Ideally though...they'd carry a shirt depicting the infamous "Dance Of Joy" . Yes, that's a brilliant notion... I must write to someone . ..

21. " You were working as a waitress at a cocktail bar...."

22. see #13, #15...

23. Sort of an inside joke...they don't go for the obvious stapler gag here. I appreciate. Have I mentioned before that the fictitious Peter Gibbons may very well be my soulmate??

24. I like Little Miss Splendid better, but this one may be a closer match to my own disposition.

Heeey--why on earth don't they have tees with the Sweet Pickles gang on 'em??

25. This would be a wonderful addition to my burgeoning collection of Fred Sanford attire. This was Fred's signature beverage--he used to mix up champagne with ripple. . .and voila! CHAMPIPPLE.

26. I watched this show as a youth and somehow, the only thing retained in my memory is that theme song ("Believe it or not, I'm walking on air!! I never though I could free-eeee-eee...") I have been tempted to buy the Season 1 DVD set in order to jog my memory (let it be known that this is one ridiculous urge I have not yet succumbed to...)

27 a-f. I MUST own a Big Lebowski shirt. I can't really decide which is the best here. As far as text, I really like the phrase "The Dude Abides" but I'm not too big on that odd over-the-shoulder shot we have here in 27c . I think ultimately, it comes down to deciding between either 27d or 27f....