Thursday, February 28, 2013

Relax, it's just sex(ercise).

So, a few years back, we went to the Music City Burlesque perform a show called "Spring Break or Bust".  It was fun, and campy, and I loved it.

Since then, I've been on their emailing list for Delinquent Debutantes, where they offer classes, workshops, parties, etc.

My friend N took their Burlesque 101 recently, and I mentioned to her, I always wanted to take their tassel twirling workshop.  

Sure enough, she sent the link to me, and I signed us up.

We're going to learn to on March 30th.  Sadly, it's a skill I'll never be able to share with the general public.  Unless, it turns out I'm really freaking great at it, and then I may have to redesign my career goals.

So, I'll keep you posted on that.  No pictures.  Sorry.

Now, in other news.  Sometimes, I crack myself up.

The Pope retired today, and one of my funny friends posted a picture of him on FB:


He made a comment about the Pope now finding time to join the Red Hat Ladies.

I commented:

"I saw that exact same ring at Forever 21. Or, in his case Semper XXI."

Five people have liked it. 

Holy Benedict, I'm hi-larious.

I know, I know.

I'm reminded of a time, right before Matt and I got married, when we were asked by my father to dye some eggs for Easter.  We were eating barbecue, drinking beer at Dreamland and Matt asked, "Will dye be provided?"  For some reason, I got tickled and started cackling.   I couldn't stop.  Dad was vaguely horrifed.  Short answer, yes, dye was provided.  As were eggs.  We stopped to get more eggs, too. 

Because, we decided to dye one pretty batch, per Dad's mandate, then did a second batch of eggs in poor taste.  Matt dyed one to look like a breast.  I dyed one in the colors of the Italian Flag and wrote on it, "Get Well Soon, Pope".  This would have been April 2005, and the Pope at the time was very ill and died shortly thereafter.  I'm an asshole.

Matt wrote on one:  Happy Easter!  Now Go Home!   Those are the ones I can tell you about.  There are a few that in the written context are too tasteless to cop to.

I could like and say I'm not proud of what we did.  But it was pretty damn funny.  And I am proud.

We took them over to show Mom and Dad the next day and they howled.   

I'm not sure why I'm telling you this.  Except that I can still hear Matt saying, "Will dye be provided?" and it makes me laugh.

This is not the Easter when Lola got into the cake and sausage.  That was Easter 2004.  Easter 2005, Mom and Matt got into the champagne.  In a big way.  Again, I say that with pride.  They put back some serious champagne.  

We're not a religious family - our celebration of Easter is mostly Pagan, and involves good food, and flowers, and eggs and chocolate and bunnies and whatnot.  The story of the crucifixion/resurrection doesn't really make it into our celebrations.  

I'm OK with that.  At least we're not taking up Pew Space from people who show up the other 51 Sundays of the year.

You're welcome.

Oh, and good news - looks like my February is going to end without much incident.  Which is what happens when you spend 1/3 of the shortest month of the year flat on your ass with a respiratory infection.

Bring it March.  Bring.  It.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Things I think you should know

1.  I could watch the screaming goats YouTube clip for hours.  And hours.  And hours.  Holy shit, that's funny.  Haven't seen it?  Crawl out from under your rock and peep this:


2.  The version with Taylor Swift?  Even better: 


3.  I talked with Mom and Dad on the phone.  I think it might be time to go for a visit.  Possibly this weekend.  I'm concerned.  Dad doesn't sound good.  

3a.  Being a grownup?  Sucks.    It's no screaming goats, that's for damn sure.

4.  I've decided I like hockey better than baseball.  Sacrilege?  Maybe.  But how many times has your beer gotten hot at a baseball game?  Mmm hmm.  At a hockey game?  Exactly.

5.  I'm glad for my inhaler.  Why?  I need it.  I've been short of breath today, yesterday and so on.

6. Work is going pretty well.  I apparently suck less at my job than we thought.  I say this because I got a review that was better than I expected, and probably kinder than I deserved.  I'll take it - don't get me wrong - I'm thrilled.  Just stunned.

7.  I have a sum of money we'll call $X.  I have two things I could do with that sum, one being something I really want to do.  The other is something I want to do as well, but also really *need* to do, and the sooner I get it done, the better.   Naturally, they both cost exactly $X, and neither of them are really something that could be handled via payment plan.

7a.  See 3a.  I'll end up going with the need rather than the want.  And that?  Sucks.

8.  The soundtrack to Book of Mormon is so great.  How great?  I've listened to Hello and I Believe almost as much as screaming goats.

9.  I fucking love my new car.  Fucking.  Love.

10.  I miss Lola.  Duh.  I saw a post on FB today about sleeping with dogs:



Lola was a Puzzle with me.  I thought about her a lot while I was sick.  A lot. She would have been a comfort.    My friend Jim said, "Just remember the good times."  They were all good times.  Really - even when she was bad, she was great.

Once, she and Sadie decimated an Easter cake.  Then she stole a whole sausage link (like an andouille, I think) and ran around the table with it.  Like Daytona, with sausage.  That was terrible, and great, and I miss her.  Damn, I miss her.

11.  I need a facial.  I made the mistake of mentioning this on FB - forgetting that I'm friends with an aesthetician, who I'm sure is great, but I can't afford.  If I end up in Atlanta this weekend, I may just hit up Spa Sydell and call it a day.

12.  I booked travel to Newark for April today.  CAT Conference.  I am looking forward to that.  Probably too much.  It can't possibly live up to the conference in NOLA last year.  Although Newark and New Orleans start with the same three letters, they are in fact, worlds apart.

13.  I called Mom.  I'm going to visit this weekend.

14.  Have I mentioned 3a., recently?

ae 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Whooo!

I woke up this morning feeling more normal than I have in two weeks.  I mean, it's a weekend and I'm up and dressed before noon.

I'm still a little phlegmy, and I don't want to leave the house without Kleenex, but I feel basically decent.

And I think I'm done bitching about this whole episode.

January was tragic, February has been consumed with health problems.  March should be astonishing.  Really.

I'm starting to gear up for Spring.  I've made a few wardrobe purchases, I have a few more in mind.

Basically, I'm ready for what's next, whatever that ends up being.

I'm leaving the house today, going to get a little Vitamin D, and some fresh scenery.  Even if it's just Costco, I haven't seen it in months!

Also, I want lunch. We got a giftcard to Longhorn at Christmas - I think a little red meat might do us good. 

So, let's have a great day.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Why not?

So, today, I went offsite for a little Professional Development - I belong, at least monetarily, to ASTD - a professional org for trainers like me.  I've been a member for a year, this was the first thing I've ever attended.

It was A Day of Learning.  And here's why I went - the second keynote of the day was Second City - the improv people.  Talking about Improv to Improve your Training...

So that was a no-brainer.

The rest of the breakouts I attended were all over the place - I went to one that focused on some upcoming technology.  I went because the presenter is from a company founded by two former employees of my current company - and, the guy who hired me also now works there.

I went to one on Ten Steps to a Thriving Career - it was all over the place.  I basically need to dress better, network more and feed those people who are my champions with sound bites about how special I am.  I couldn't take my eyes of the hideous necklace the presenter was wearing.  Or, the unfortunate shirt choice.  It was an eyesore kind of session.

The last one of the day with with an Integrative Wellness Practitioner who ran us through some Qi Gong and meditation exercises.  I enjoyed that because watching so many people look completely uncomfortable was beautiful, and the relaxation techniques were quite nice, too.

And in between all that, I watched my email explode.  Great fun! 

So tomorrow, back to practice, no theory. 

And no Second City people to envy.

But... maybe I can put out at least one of the flaming bags of dog poo that was left at my doorstep.

Now, onto other news.

Since the Day of Learning was here in town, I popped over to the Mazda dealership and picked up my license plate, and they put it on the car for me.

It's:


266 YYY

Why?  Why?!?!  WHY?!!?!?!

I love it, naturally.

I'm thinking now that my car's name needs to start with a Y.

I'll get back to you.

I'm feeling better, incidentally - thanks to Augmentin.  Of course, I forgot that Augmentin gives me terrible heartburn.  So that's not fun, but it is helping.  I would give anything to not have to blow/wipe my nose every 10 minutes, but one thing at a time, I guess.

I "made" dinner for the first time in about 2 weeks - which is to say, I bought a baked chicken and some pre-done mashed potatoes, and steamed a bag of broccoli in the micro.  I think that counts.

In a bit here, I'm going to my friend Rosie's to watch a little Project Runway.   And blow my nose.

Whatever.

I got to talk to two people who work at Second City.  They loved me.

No, really.

ae

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

But do you have any ice?

When my father was a young man, he had a cousin, an affluent fellow, whose refrigerator had an automatic ice maker.

Keep in mind, Dad is 72.  So we can assume that was luxury at some point in his life - not a birth right.

My father decided that owning an ice maker would be the sign that he had made it in the world.

I've never known a time when Dad didn't have ready-made ice at his fingertips, so I'd say he made it, and made it early in life.

In fact, they bought a fridge recently that has a door dispenser of both crushed and cubed ice and filtered water.  Dad loves the damn thing.  He also recently had his shower refurbed with a built in bench.  Loves that too.  I'd say that crushed ice and hot showers are two of the things that get my Dad out of bed every day.  I don't mean that as a bad thing.  He's not a water sign.  I checked.

Where am I going with this?  Well... nowhere ice related.  We do not have an ice maker at the house.  We have trays we can fill... somewhere.  We never do.  No space in the freezer for them.  We buy ice for parties, otherwise, you're SOL.

Point being, to me that's a nice to have, but not a needs to have.

My benchmark that tells me I've made it?  I can have a pedicure pretty much whenever I want.

When I was single, and even when we first got married, I had to make them laaaaaaaaaaast.  I would get one every six weeks, only in the summer.  I got good at using polish that I owned, or a Sharpie or whatever to disguise chips.  I generally got the same color (OPI's I'm Not Really A Waitress") so that I could prolong my pedis.

Now, I get a different, fun, funky color every single time.  And if I need one two weeks after the last time I got one, I get a new one. 

And here's why.  One, I wear sandals for work as much as possible in the summer.  They look good, they make my leg look longer, they keep my feet cool.

But if I'm going to do that, my heels need to be clean and unscaly, and I can't have funky chipped polish, or, heaven forbid, no polish.  Went without for a few days last summer, got the hairy eyeball from my former boss, who knows all about my pedi obsessions.  I was so shamed, I quickly slapped on some glitter polish over the offending toenails til I could get professional intervention.

Like this, basically.


The other reason I do it is because it feels good.   I like the attention, I like the esprit de corps of sitting at my pedi place with the other women (and increasingly men) who are doing a little something good for themselves.  I tip really well, and I believe that also means it's good for the economy.  And they're not just for summer any more.  Sometimes, even though my feet don't see light of day, I get them in the winter.

I go to this place called Venetian Nail Spa.  It's run like a foot factory on steroids.  They do good work.  There are a few others I'll hit up, but Venetian is really my go-to.  They have easily 40 pedi chairs, and I've never seen them not busy as fuck.

Point being, I've made it - I can get pedis on demand. 

Although, at the moment, I sure could use some crushed ice.



ae

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Make it stop!

I'm on a week of being sick.  A week.  It's starting to get to me in a big way.

I took today off because I didn't have anything on my calendar.   Of course, as soon as the bosslady gave the OK to take off, I got an invitation for a call at 12:30.  I went ahead and took it.  It's fine. 

I went to breakfast because I thought pancakes sounded good.  They weren't bad.  I went to the nearest Cracker Barrel to get them, and Pauline, my waitress, picked up on my illness right off.  Bless her heart.  It hurt to chew bacon.  I inhaled the OJ, water and coffee, and made decent progress on the pancakes.

I came home, prepped for the call and took it.  It went badly.  The customer kept talking over us.  And I'm dealing with sinus pain, so I already feel like I'm on three second delay.

We got through it, and I took some meds.  I got on the couch and started the movie that guarantees near instant results.


I watched it, with the director commentary.  It was awesome.  I then took some drugs and slept.  For several hours.  I'm up now.  And I'm watching hockey.  I'm not insanely hungry, so I'll find a little something then finish up hockey and then... bed.

If I don't feel better tomorrow, I'm going to be so pissed.




I haven't felt this awful since I saw that Ronald Reagan movie!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Complaining, again.

I spent the weekend basically laid out with this damn virus.  The fever is FINALLY under control.  Finally.

The sinus pressure and pain are still abundantly with me, as well as the wheezing and feeling that someone is sitting on my sternum.  This is all "normal".

Here's how sick I've been - I got my packages from Lands' End Friday.  They're in the front room, unopened.

I have to also throw together some nice clothes for tomorrow - we have a customer in house.  So no jeans.

I'll have to be well enough to go in.  Even if I'm not, I'm going.

Thankfully, it's a short demo, and out.

I have to think I've lost a few pounds this week, but even if not, I'm thinner than I was before it started - just because I'm not eating.

Although, I am a little hungry.

For pizza. Or Five Guys.

I am, therefore, probably not dying.

This time.

ae

PS - I could also use a Saline Firehouse.  Like a neti pot, but more effective.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Going Viral

I finally went to the doctor yesterday, and I'm sure you'll be stunned to learn that I have a viral upper respiratory infection.  Which is to say, "We know you feel terrible, you're going to continue to feel terrible for another week, and we can't give you antibiotics, so keep taking the OTC stuff and keep on truckin'.  Oh, and thanks for the $25 co-pay."

Now, that said, the nurse was kind enough to call this morning because the doctor noticed my blood pressure was significantly elevated yesterday, and they want me to keep an eye on it today and tomorrow and call in my numbers.

So, maybe they have my back, after all.

The fact is, I still feel questionable as hell this morning.  I swear they could shove a camera up my nose and shoot a horror film.  "THE SLIME". 

I'm pretty sure I'm going to try to bug out after lunch.  If I could get some good, actual non-drug induced sleep, I think I'd feel so much better.  But as it is, I have a low-grade fever, I can't breathe through my nose, which means I have to breathe through my mouth, which makes my throat dry, then I cough, then... you get the picture.  It's an upper respiratory infection.  People get then every day and live to tell the story.

But you know me - I'm a special unique snowflake.  My respiratory health  is worthy of a text-book chapter. 

Still. 

In other news, because, yes, I am more than my disease... ahahah.

Yesterday was Valentine's Day.  I celebrated here at the office by eating way too many sugary treats.  It was awesome.  I served dinner last night on theme plates.  They had hearts and alligators on them.  I found them at Kroger.  We had meatloaf.  Because nothing says love like meatloaf.  Actually, it wasn't half bad.

Work is kind of a blur these days.  We're starting to get more contracts that contain onsite training, but what's weird about that is that our customers are fighting us about traveling.

I don't really have anything else.

It's all good.

ae

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Down. But not out.

I caught a little of whatever the hell has been going around the past few weeks.  I feel like death warmed over.  I came home last night, took my temperature, and found out that in fact, yes, I was warmed over.  101 degrees.  I went to bed, stayed there basically all night.

I wouldn't have gotten up this morning except, I had to pee.  And then, I had to get dressed and come into the office and deliver some training.

What I am not doing, actually, is any baking for Matt and his co-workers.  I'll send treats for Valentine's day, but they won't be homemade.  Sorry kiddos.

We are having a bake sale at work next week - perhaps I won't be grody then. 

Grody.  That's right - I'm invoking the 80s.  I feel grody.

There's also this sort of stale bar/unwashed fratboy smell in our area.  I noticed it yesterday but thought it was just my sick nose making things up.  Then the pregnant woman two desks away mentioned she smelled something like pee.  So maybe I'm not having olfactory hallucinations. This week.

I'm going to find lunch.  I still feel a little feverish and I'm contemplating Noshville for a Chicken Soup Fix.

Today is Foundling Day.  Thinking of my  ex-, and always beast.  Of course.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Nuts!

I had a very long and meandering dream this morning where I was in a play about a softball team.  My first line in the play was:

"Nuts!"

To which another female character replied, "I beg your pardon?!"

"Peanuts, Popcorn, Cracker Jacks!"  I replied.

I had another scene in the play where I grabbed a male players ass and said, "Nice buns, there, hot stuff!"

His response, "I've told you many times, my name is Consuelo."

It was weird.  And as a result of this play, which seemed to be part of some kind of summer theatre workshop, I was nominated for Best Actress.

I don't know if I won - because then I was designing sets and creating a painting for the sets, and I started talking with my boss (my real life boss) about making sure that the paintings on the set were archetypal.

And then, Matt came in and woke me up to see if I wanted anything from Sonic.  For the record, the answer is always, "Yes, I'll have a large Coke Zero."

Now, I'm spending the afternoon attempting to wake up, and here in a minute, I'll go clean out the fridge, and start making lunch - a homemade pizza.  Then, I need to hit up the Kroger, maybe another quick jaunt out to Trader Joe's.

Later this week, I'll be turning my white chocolate lobster, a Christmas gift from my Mainers, into baked goods for Valentines day.  It should be fun, I think.   I'm looking at a white chocolate, oatmeal pecan cookie.  Nuts!

In other news, there's really not a lot of other news.  I apparently ate quite a bit of sodium at Chinese New Year, because I'm hella swole.

Time to push fluids in a big way.

And it's really warm here this weekend - I think we'll open some windows and let the early Spring in.

A huge nanny nanny boo boo to my friends in the Northeast who are enjoying the damage from Nemo.  It's warm here.

Heh.

I had a little retail therapy last night.  Ordered something cute and fun for myself.

Fabulous looking model not included.




They offered this blouse in other colors and designs at Lands End last year and I never ordered it, even though I coveted it, madly.  This year, I took the plunge.  I know it'll pay for itself.

My plan is to debut it in Newark in April, and then wear the living hell out of it all summer.

I have a lot of plans, what can I tell you?

I've been eyeballing a new raincoat from Eddie Bauer.  Do I dare spend the money?  Maybe next month.

Hard to believe we're nearly half through this one.

ae

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Year of the Snake

Today, I slept in.  Well, I got up early to send Matt off for a class he's taking today, then I rolled over and fell asleep til 10AM.

It was good.  I cannot tell a lie.

I've been working on decluttering and putting things in their correct place ever since.  I stopped for a quick lunch, and I'm going to start up again here in a minute.

At 5:30, I am having dinner with the women from my Zumba class - one of them is having a Chinese New Year party.  I don't know what to wear.  Jeans, surely, but with what?  Right? I know!  Welcome to my world. Wish I had something in a snakeskin print.

Anyway.  It's the year of the snake.  Welcome, snake.

I need to get a bottle of plum wine to take.  I do love a little wine.

And then tomorrow, more decluttering, maybe a trip to Goodwill - and maybe, if I'm good, I'll see about buying a new futon tomorrow.

So far, February is playing out much better than January.  I cannot tell I lie, though - I miss Lola.  I'm finding all kinds of dog stuff in the hoard piles throughout the house - so those are getting put away, or more often, tossed.

There will be another dog.  Maybe next Spring.  This Spring is for cleaning and purging.  Purging the house.  I don't purge.  We all know, I'm all about the binge.

Make it a great day!

ae

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

No kidding!



There’s a lot of the old pregnancy bug going around at the office – two women are pregnant; a third just started her  Maternity Leave.  Several of the menfolk have wives who are expecting.

My advice?  Don’t drink the water.  And by water, I mean penis, and by drink, I mean insert unprotected into a vagina.

I decided some time ago not to have kids.  Despite everyone’s insistence that I’d change my mind and get the urge to procreate, I never did, I never have.  Ok, occasionally, I’ll get a mild feeling that maybe I should be out there momming it up, and then I remember how good I am at not having kids and it passes.

You might think that the recent rash of babies would have made me feel like I was missing out.  Instead, it’s cemented my belief that not everyone has to populate the planet.

Want to know how I know?  Well, for starters, just re-read my post from a few days back about the screaming babies at WalMart.  Duh. 

But for me, the real litmus test has been shopping for two showers in the past month.  The first was for my friend who is having her first baby, a girl, in March.  I stood in the middle of the baby section at Target, flustered and vaguely nauseous.  I finally found a gift, and it was fine, but it was just exhausting.

Today, I attended a shower for a co-worker.  We’re not especially close, but the entire department was invited, and I do love a good party.  So… he’s having a boy – their second kid.  I couldn’t deal with another Target run, so I took the easy way out and got a Babies r Us gift card.  Inside a greeting card that read:

So Tiny
So Smelly
So Awesome

Which I think sums it up.  It’s almost like Hallmark knows my soul sometimes.

(A side tangent; I once applied to be a card writer for Hallmark – my submissions were returned to me, but some years later, I saw a card from them that sounded remarkably like one I’d sent them.  Hmmph!)

I don’t think the Mom or the Dad thought the card was as amusing as I did.  Too bad.    I’m sending out Valentines today, and I think they’ll get a  much better reception.

Anyway…

Hopefully we’re well showered for now. 

But one good thing came of it.  We played a game – Guess the Baby – and I now have a photo to share.

That's a Pinto in the background.  Yep, safety.



Portrait of the Author as a Young Woman.

Or as Matt dubbed it “Barely Fetal”. 

I was pretty damn cute.

ae

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Mayonnaiseless Marriage

So, Matt doesn't eat mayonnaise.  And I'm not saying, he won't pull out a jar of Hellmann's and a spoon and dig in.

That would be gross.  Really, what are we - animals?   Even I won't do that.  And I generally don't use it on sandwiches either - so I'm not a mayonnaise enthusiast, by any means, but I do recognize its culinary value.

However, he won't eat anything prepared with mayo, which means that all of the following are off the menu:

- Egg Salad

- Deviled Eggs

- Tuna Salad

- Chicken Salad

- Pimiento Cheese

- Potato Salad

- Macaroni Salad

- Cole Slaw

It's not a deal breaker.  It's not as if he's a man who doesn't believe in evolution.  Or a man who refuses to have pets.  Or a man who refuses to use deodorant... or, heaven forbid, a man who eats...Miracle Whip. 




But it does kind of put the kibosh on some things that I make, and I make quite well.

I use my Father's recipe for most of the above, and I should tell you, his coleslaw is delicious.

It's four ingredients - salt, dill weed, cabbage and mayonnaise.  I should explain that by mayonnaise, I basically mean Hellmann's.  I become brand loyal at a young age.

Anyway, it's also very easy, especially with the advent of bagged shredded cabbage. 

Now, I can live with not eating lots of egg salad and pimiento cheese, to say nothing of potato salad - because let's face it - they're not exactly good for you.  And, I can get them down at Mom and Dad's should I run dangerously low in my cholesterol levels (it hasn't happened yet, but I keep hoping).

And, I've got a potato salad made with sour cream as a binder.  I have a pasta salad that uses pesto, or, in a pinch, vinaigrette.

But the lack of coleslaw is something of a pain in the ass.  I've made Asian slaw from time to time - and it's OK.  But, sometimes the meal you're making doesn't lend itself to a sesame dressing.  Sometimes, you just need slaw that is slaw.

Tonight, I made fish tacos.  Which is to say, I heated up some small halibut filets I got from Trader Joes in the oven and opened a can of refried beans.  From there, I started on the cabbage to go with.  And I made a Mexican slaw that might work.

Here's what I did.  I put a bag of cabbage into a bowl.  For the dressing, I used a few good dollops of sour cream (light), with a large blurp of Trader Joe's salsa verde and a healthy shake or three of dill weed - I whisked it into a slurry and mixed it into the cabbage.  The verdict:  delicious.  We both ate some.  I ate more, but I really, really like cabbage. 

Now, there's one other thing I make really well that Matt doesn't care for.  Tuna Noodle Casserole.

I KNOW.  I love it.  Love.  LOVE.

It used to be Matt would go out of town from time to time and I'd make a casserole and eat it while he was gone.  Now I'm doing the traveling and I haven't had a good Tuna Casserole in ages.

Full disclosure:  I may have, once or twice, eaten cookie dough for dinner when he was traveling.

Look, it's not perfect - we have our struggles like any couple - but we make it work.  Even without mayo.

ae

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Observations

So, good weekend - I de-hoardered the front room of our house.  I still have a lot of work to do - the Butler's Pantry, Dining Room and Attic are all a HOT MESS.

But, I can walk in the front door without dodging a large leather armchair and scads of boxes.

I spent the late afternoon and evening shopping; first at Wal-Mart, then at Trader Joe's, finished with 10 items or less at Kroger.

Here are some observations.

1.  There is never a good time to shop at Wal-Mart, but the hour before the Super Bowl starts is an especially bad time. 

2.  No matter how bad I look - unshowered, covered in dustbunnies, hair askew - I never look bad enough to avoid going to Wal-Mart - and even thought I worry a little about ending up on peopleofwalmart.com, I never look worse than a great many of the shoppers or employees.  Score one for me.

3.  There are more screaming babies at Wal-Mart per square foot than anywhere else on the planet, and that includes the Maternity Ward of any hospital.  The way I see it, the kids are reacting the way we want to - if only we weren't mature adults.

4.  I have a friend at Weight Watchers who calls it Squall-Mart.  It's funny because it's true.  Wail-Mart is also funny/true. 

5.  I once saw a note in our sales software that indicated a contact at one of our customers was "on maturity leave". 

6.  My new keys are of the "switchblade" variety.  Only one problem with that.  They're right-handed.

  
I, for the record, am left-handed.  It's not a deal breaker, but it took me a few days to realize that the Mazda people, like the rest of the world, are conspiring against me.

7.  Half-Time of the Super Bowl is an excellent time to go to Trader Joe's.  You couldn't ask for a better time.  There were no crying babies.  There were a questionable number of young children there.  At 8PM, on a school night.  I'm not judging their parents, except - I totally am.

8.  I had a $100 gift card to TJ's - a gift from Mom and Dad at Christmas.  So I took it tonight.  Wasn't really paying attention, but bought per their (and Matt's) mandate, "fun things".  Got a few bars of nice soap, some flowers - the impulse things I always want to put in the cart, but don't because it's not pasta sauce or chicken burgers or hummus.  I did grab a second bag of oranges after the produce clerk raved about them, and then apologized for trying to upsell me, assuring me that everything in their store is guaranteed.  This.  This is why I love my Trader Joe's.   Anyway, I got to the register, fully prepared to supplement the bill - but it rang up to $99.44 - SCORE!

9.  Finished off the day at Kroger, because, why not hit the trifecta? To be fair, the reason I hit Wally World (the only reason) is that I needed a lampshade.   But (and I hate to admit this), WM has better prices on a handful of things.  That said, they're further away, and I'd rather shop at Kroger, where there are still crying babies, but less ground to cover - and generally, much better checkout experiences.  I may cringe at the "Have a blessed day" I often get at Kroger, but it beats the caveperson grunts I get at Wal-Mart. 

10.  Although I'm not a traditionally detail-oriented person, I do put my groceries on the conveyor belt in the order they are to be bagged:  I separate out my cold and my room temperature stuff.  I also make grocery lists in the order of the store layout.  So, I guess I have the capacity to be detail oriented.

11.  I wonder if they make left-handed switchblade keys?  A quick check of the old Google says no.  Ok, I'll adapt.  Slowly.

Good night.

ae

Friday, February 1, 2013

I have a theory.

So it snowed here in Music City last night.

You would never know that a hoarder lives here.

Looks like a Winter Wonderland, doesn't it?

Well, point being, I got up, checked out the window and thought, "looks good".  Got on Google Maps to check traffic - green all the way to the office.

And then, I opened the News Channel 5 App on my smart phone.

Metro schools:  Closed.   In fact, with a few exceptions, every county within 50 miles appears to have closed.  Why?  Black ice.

Now, black ice is real - it's scary and nobody, not even the most hardened Canadian can drive on black ice - unless they have a Zamboni or spiked tires.

But the streets were dry.  There was no black ice.  There was no pink ice. 

There was some ice on my windshield, but that's to be expected.

So here's what I think.

Black ice is the lie we southerners tell ourselves to feel better about the fact that we're total pussies when it comes to cold weather.

I made it to work without incident.