8.31.2006

Color me Bad.

Out of sheer frustration with my complete lack of mad e-skillz and my inability to fix the color and resolution of my own header, I've reverted back to one of the cookie cutters. Perhaps someday when I find 28 hours of free time, I'll try to make this thing decent once and for all.

Heading to Cirque du Soleil's Delirium tonight with the H to celebrate 3 years of marriage. Should be odd and pretty. We sprang for the club level seating section at the pepsi center, so people shall serve us beverages and such on little trays all night long. Horray!

8.29.2006

Down with the exterminator.

My boss had a sweet little cat named Burt, who was only about 2 years old. He died last night, after a long weekend of illness punctuated yesterday by acute kidney failure.

You see, apparently certain insecticides the exterminator uses to spray your house for bugs are LETHAL to cats and some dogs. And apparently they don't find this a fact worthy of sharing with their clients prior to dousing their carpet with chemicals, nor do they notice when there are two dogs and a cat curiously following them around the house while they hose down every corner with toxic fluids.

Poor little Burt - his short life ended in agony when all the company had to do was make it known that this tragedy was a possibility.

I do solemnly swear never to spray my house for bugs of any kind, even if my kitchen counters are brown with masses of cockroaches and my mattress infested with beetles.

8.25.2006

Desperado.

OK, so this may be like "so 5 months ago" or something, but what the fuck has Kenny Rogers gone and done to his face? Specifically, his eye/forehead region.

Let me preface this by explaining the undying flame of love I hold in my heart for Kenny. It's not that I totally dig his music or anything (although there are a couple classics I've been known to play every now and again). But I grew up with the guy. Kenny's smooth, folksy, whisky-y voice formed the soundtrack to many of my fondest childhood memories.

In high school, being the kitsch fan (read: hopeless dork) I was, I had a sweet baseball T with 3/4 length burnt sienna sleeves featuring Kenny's suave mug framed by a silver lining and highlighted with luminescent glitter. I LOVED that shirt. Not only because of its innate fabulousness, but also because it forced me to articulate my love for an oldhead country music star to all my punk-ass, NIN-loving friends when they questioned my choice of attire.

I acquired my adoration and unwavering respect for Kenny from my mother - always the hardcore fan and Kenny karaoke star. Some of our most fabulous family holidays were accompanied by my mom dancing around the house belting out You decorated my life or, her absolute favorite, Lady.

The Gambler is one of the first songs to which I recall learning every word (the other being Paul Simon's 50 Ways to Leave your Lover). I remember singing it along with the radio as loud as I could when I rode with my dad on the long drive out to the farm.

Ahhh...Kenny. What a guy. In our eyes, Kenny was the bee's knees. Capable of no ill will or pretension. Keeper of all things pure and clean and soft. Bearded saint of warm fuzzies. 100% unadulterated greatness - laugh lines, crow's feet, wrinkles and all.

But now, as much as it pains me to say it and as unfair as it may be, I must admit that my once unwavering respect for the guy has begun to falter. No longer will hearing his melodious voice bring only shiny happy memories of childhood to my head. Instead, at the first note of Lucille I'll inevitably picture *the new Kenny* - the one who looks not unlike Roy Horn with just a touch less product in his hair.

And that makes me sad.

8.21.2006

Put on yer shitkickers and kick some shit.

Man, I've been having a hard time bringing myself to post as of late. I'm in some sort of stress-induced funk and feeling like kicking some ass - anyone's really - and kicking it good.

My (precious little) free time lately has been filled with the consumption of stiff adult beverages, the smoking of copious amounts of cigs and the shirking of much-needed sessions at the gym. Oh, and, the eating of nasty, preservative- and msg-laden fast food. All of which, I fully realize, contributes to the worsening of my current state/attitude.

I have like 57 drafts saved in here, but none are worthy of publishing at the moment. Even reading them is depressing and tedious.

So, I'm off to attend to my kicking-of-much-ass urges with the hope of returning to normalcy soon.

8.15.2006

Sticky sweet.

Holy shit, it's hot in Phoenix.

We had a great weekend with some good friends exploring the suburban hinterlands that constitute P-to-the-X, most all from the safety of an airconditioned automobile. Did you know many people there refer to themselves as "Phoenicians"?

Ate lots of good food, saw lots of cacti (and more "W" bumperstickers than we could count) and had our first IKEA experience. I must second rosalicious' inquiry and ask why the hell D-town has no such establishment as of yet. This market is ripe for that shit yo!

Lots to catch up on at work today, so I must be on my merry way.

One question though - why does anyone like anything Steely Dan has put out ever? Listening to Steely Dan is tantamount, in my mind, to eating soggy bread pudding at an old folks home - it makes me tired, sad and slightly pissed off. Kind of like Phoenix.

8.11.2006

Fun with numbers.

23.

The number of days it took from the date of the burglary until our claim was settled.

4-6.

The number of additional days they say it'll take for us to receive the flippin check.

35.

The percent depreciation per year that they figure on CDs.

1.

The number of minutes it will take me to find a new insurance company and cancel my policy with these bozos, once the claim check is received.

1,000,000,000,000.

The current temperature reading in degrees Fahrenheit for Phoenix, Arizona, where we head today to spend the weekend.

87.

The number of "liquids, gels and creams" I normally use on a daily basis that I was forced to omit from my carry-on bag as I packed for my flight last night.

3.25

The number of hours left for me to endure here at work before a nice, HOT, 3-day weekend.

8.10.2006

Bear with me.

As I try to get my header in order!

Any tips? Pass em on.

8.09.2006

Gold rush.

"Whatcha doin'...diggin' for gold?"

That's what my dad would've said had he witnessed my activities last night.

I'm a clean person. Which is to say, I thoroughly enjoy/respect/expect cleanliness. In all its manifestations. Everywhere.

Which is why, when the H expressed years' worth of pent-up longing for the opportunity to obtain a kitten, I had to weigh my love for him against my fervent desire to maintain a spot- (and fur-) free household.

Well, emotion trumped logic when I saw little Willis (who, incidentally, was named "Preston" at the time - totally a name for a small, bratty child of the Nordic variety and most certainly not one for a tiny black kitten with a wild, quivery twinkle in his eye). And so we got Willy, with whom I fell deeply and comprehensively in love.

So I got home from work last night, had a drink with the H, made some dinner...all the usual jazz. But all the while, something was keeping me from relaxing. Something was making an intermittent whistling noise. I brought it to the H's attention, and he suggested that perhaps this high-pitched sound was coming from the air conditioner. Thankful as I am for joyous, luscious a.c., I resigned myself to the squeal and moved along.

As we sat on the couch to take in a rather disgusting episode of House, Willy came sauntering over, looking debonair as usual, and plopped himself between us. It was then that I realized the whistle was coming from his nose. (Think John Cage in Ally McBeal).

So, what did I do you ask? I positioned Willy on his back and began to remove the offending substance. Bit by bit, I picked my cat's crusty nose. It wasn't like I was just non-chalantly brushing away the dried snot from the exterior either. No, I had assumed the requisite position and was digging the boogers out with my pinky finger with the zeal of a Klondike-era gold prospector. And I kept it up until the problem was *completely* resolved.

Thing is, I found the experience gratifying despite its repulsiveness. Willy was free of boogers. We were free of the whistle. And all was good and nice and swell and clean at the K household.

What's next? Perhaps a styrofoam peanut lodged in Willy's throat? Or a turd firmly encrusted in the fur of his hindquarters?

Bring it on, I say. For no longer have I any fear.

8.07.2006

I'm gonna live forever.

In an effort to expand the list of shows at which we are the oldest fogies in attendance, the H and I went to Death Cab for Cutie last night at the Fillmore. It was really a great show. The crotchety old lady that I am, I suggested we show up about an hour late, under the assumption that an 8pm show time meant Mates of States would take the stage about 9 and Death Cab some time near 11. But I gotta give em credit for taking care of business on a school night, because when we got there at 9, Mates of State was already done and gone and Death Cab began playing shortly thereafter.

The kids next to us were the picture of teen angst, slumped over in their seats with expressions recalling the most horrific and painful events of their short little lives. I guess none of these kids were able to fully form sentences for most of the 80s, and therefore lack an understanding of the catastrophe that was 1980s fashion, so I should cut them a little slack. But lace-trimmed leggings? Really?

8.04.2006

13 Simple Rules.

I've taken it upon myself to compile a short list of rules of etiquette for my fellow gym patrons. Apparently, it is a widely held belief that a communal shower/locker room is to be treated precisely like one's own home. I sincerely believe that if we all stick to these few simple directives, the gym experience will be vastly improved for everyone.

1. Old Spice is not ok boys. For anyone. Ever. Particularly when applied in excessive quantities in a suffocatingly humid locker room and allowed to waft into common areas. This also applies to the ladies - perfume is so 1992 anyway. If you chose to spritz, do so in the out of doors.

2. While extreme modesty is a hindrance to general locker room fluidity and efficiency, there are limits to the nakedness your fellow gym-goers should be expected to endure (e.g. do not wildly blow-dry your hair while topless or apply mascara without first concealing your pimply ass in a good clean pair of undies).

3. Do not, under any circumstances, sing songs (christmas or otherwise) while applying your makeup.

4. Have some self-respect and put a towel under your ass when you sit on the gnarly locker room benches. Your momma doesn't work here and those trashy girls with the bad tattoos are probably slowly infesting the place with any number of small, angry bugs.

5. If you must thoroughly lotion your chestal region, please do it discretely and wipe that smile off your face while you do so.

6. Don't try to make friends with others in the locker room. We're all trying to make it out the door on time (fully clothed) and we don't care about your upcoming trip to the south of Spain or about your new smoothie recipe.

7. Upon arrival, try to choose a locker sufficiently far from already-occupied lockers to lessen morning gridlock. If you need help figuring out the ideal location for your locker, here's a handy tip: use the other lockers as your guide (the ones with locks on them already have stuff in them which means at some point, the owners of their contents will be utilizing the space directly in front of, and perhaps on either side of, those particular lockers).

8. If you can't pull yourself away from the irritating morning news programs inevitably blasting throughout the room, at least find an out-of-the-way spot from which to stare blankly at the screen. Do not position yourself dead center in the middle of the room. This forces others to maneuver around you.

9. If you really must breathe heavily or make anything that can be interpreted as a grunting or heaving sound while toweling off, you have deeper issues and should restrict your bathing activities to the comfort of your own home.

10. If you have to question whether your attire &/or bathing suit is gym-appropriate, leave it at home and stick with shorts and a t-shirt. Bikinis of the string variety are not generally advised.

11. Eat your breakfast either before or after your visit to the gym. As much as you might be enjoying that Lara Bar, please bear in mind that no one wants to hear/watch/smell you eat it at 7 in the morning.

12. If you suspect a fellow locker room occupant may not be of your same sex, give that person the benefit of the doubt. Avoid pronouncing loudly that there is a man in the women's locker room until you are certain that this is the case. Think about the likelihood of this scenario and then weigh your resulting conclusion against your poor vision and utter lack of respect for others.

13. And always remember: there's nothing funny about locker room safety.

8.03.2006

Weaksauce.

When did everyone get so goddamn sensitive intolerant? And helpless?

Perhaps it's because I come from hearty German stock and I actively cultivate my own sense of sarcasm, but I'm generally not offended by things I consider to be part of daily life - things like nudity, profanity, brutal honesty, sexuality... or rock 'n' roll for that matter.

Not to say I'm never offended. Believe you me, I am. Especially by things I consider to be part of daily life - things like ignorance, blind adherence to religious doctrine, inability to operate a motor vehicle, incapacity for compassion or original thought, random pluralization of words and titles that are clearly meant to be singular, screaming children in public places, sub-par restaurant food....ahhh, but I digress.

On NPR today, they had an interview with Paula Kerger, the president and CEO of PBS, about "decency" as defined by the FCC and the role of public television vis-a-vis the public. At one point, a caller asked why all the hubbub of late. He related his memories of watching PBS in his youth and witnessing all manner of "racy" programming - tits, ass, the whole shebang - and still managing to turn out alright.

Kerger said that in all actuality, the recent onslaught of conservative scrutiny was precipitated by Janet Jackson's unfortunate *wardrobe malfunction* and the public outrage that ensued.

Sad but true. I used to work for a PBS station, two at various times actually, and I have endured my share of angry callers (mostly stay-at-home moms, incidentally, who apparently use the television as a full-time babysitter while they tend to their household chores or eat bon bons or whatever).

One incident sticks out in my mind from my years in the public television trenches - one that still makes me question whether we deserve our opposable thumbs when I recall the details. We aired a children's program every day called Postcards from Buster featuring an animated rabbit that toured the country, dropping in to say hello to real boys and girls and families and to learn about their neck of the woods.

On one of his escapades, Buster traveled to Vermont where he met some nice folks who made maple sugar for a living in a rather idyllic rural community. Well, (note: please quit reading here if you are easily offended - this subject matter may not be suitable for all readers) one of the homes Buster visited was run by not one, but two, mommies...well, one "mom" and then "Gillian."

When word got out around the playground that millions, nay billions, of innocent children could soon be assaulted by this despicable imagery and infected with these CRAZY ideas about how to live and who parents are supposed to be, I tell you, all hell broke loose. The reasons behind the indignation of so many of our callers generally fell along these lines:

"PBS is supposed to be wholesome programming - something I can trust - something I can just turn on and not worry about."

"PBS is partially funded by my tax donors and I don't condone this sort of material on my airwaves."

"PBS is a tool of the liberal left and, as such, is plotting to overtake the (public) airwaves with extreme, leftist propaganda."

"If people want to live their lives like that, well fine, but don't broadcast it over all our televisions for all the world to see."

And on and on it went....for days. Maybe even weeks.

Beyond the obvious conclusion at which one might arrive - that this all amounts to thinly veiled bigotry - there are some questions I haven't been able to answer. Do people have no choice in what they do or what they watch on the television? Are they unable to turn programming that they find disturbing or offensive off? Do they perchance talk to their children about what they see, hear, read out in the big, scary, amoral world every day?

If you're so goddamn offended, shut your mouth and kill your television. Or at least pretend to exercise that little thing called judgment when you plop your infant in front of the thing all day long.

8.02.2006

On the sunny side.

The H, always relatively cheery regardless of the shit storm a'brewin in the rest of the world, even managed to find joy in the endless filling out of paperwork that our recent *incident* required.

the H: (gingerly filling in the blanks) You know, I really kind of like filling out forms.

me: (astonished and slightly irritated) Are you for real?

the H: (in all seriousness) Yeah, I mean, it's like taking a test, but about yourself. So, it's cool because you know all the answers already.


If only I could get to that place.

8.01.2006

The sound of one cow laughing.

I eat pretty much all day long at work.

I generally package my food for the day in increments of about 100 calories (not to exceed 500 or so) and then munch my way through the day starting round about 9am.

Among my favorite mid-day snacks - Laughing Cow Garlic & Herb Cheese Wedges. These little babies pack an amazing punch for a mere 35 calories, although the tradeoff is a serious case of ass breath.

Point is, I'm rather food-motivated. As such, I strive to make the most of each morsel of food I consume and drag out my enjoyment as long as possible. This proclivity for self-indulgence bit me in the butt today as I finished off a cheese wedge and a couple crackers only to realize that even more cheesy fabulousness remained on the plastic knife.

I did what any classy lady might and immediately stuck the knife in my mouth and began intently sucking off all remaining dregs of cheese product. Satisfied, I pulled out the knife and cut the living shit out of the inside of my mouth in the process.

Maybe it's because I fought out my younger years in Catholic school, but I feel that somehow the intolerable sound of the knife ripping the inside of my cheek was payback for the unjustifiable amount of pleasure I was getting out of this hedonistic display. The whole thing was uniquely humiliating.