just rock, not classic

I got a spam comment on my last post that said something like, “This explanation is very complicated, but I will visit again and try to keep up.”

The only reason I didn’t mark it “not spam” and let it through, allowing me to mock it in my reply (because one really doesn’t get less complicated than “if you don’t like it, click the lovely little X in the corner and shut the fuck up”), was that I didn’t want any malignant spam from the same IP.

And so.

I resent being asked what my favorite “oldie” or “classic rock” song is, because most of you young whippersnappers think classic rock is oldies, and also because when I was a lass, and we had to trudge two miles to the spring, in button shoes and sunbonnets, to bring back MP3s in a wooden bucket, classic rock was called rock. Shut up. Anyway, I think my favorite “oldie” is probably Hound Dog, which was old even before Elvis Presley got hold of it, and my favorite classic rock song is Stairway to Heaven, the live version, where Robert Plant asks, so plaintively, so earnestly, and so fatuously, “Does anybody remember laughter?”

I had pretty much forgotten laughter, incidentally, till he said that, which was what refreshed my memory.

I live in the United States of America, which is okay, I suppose. I like my freedom. I like fast food. I like Barack Obama, and I really like Michelle Obama, who is the first fierce First Lady we’ve had since Jackie (or, more recently, Abbey Bartlet, if you count West Wing, which I do, even though it was fictional). I don’t like our economy, and I don’t like shootings in schools, and I loathe our versions of Top Gear and Being Human.

If I could only say a single sentence to Barack Obama, that sentence would be, “Do us a favor and ask Jack Schmitt about helium-3 on the moon; he can explain it better than I can.” He really can, actually. Go read Return to the Moon (he’s listed as Harrison Schmitt for that, appropriately, since it’s his real name).

I like Discovery Channel in the middle of the night. I feel like I learn more in the wee, small hours of the morning, when the whole wide world (within this time zone, at least) is fast asleep. I think that might have been where I first learned about helium-3.

The Disney villain I am most like is Winnie the Pooh. “But, Golfwidow,” you protest, “Winnie the Pooh isn’t a villain at all.” Oh, yeah? Ask the bees. That’s what kind of villain I am. I don’t mean to cause trouble. I just want some hunny.

I have never been a Girl Scout, but I have eaten tons of Girl Scout cookies, and also brownies (not Brownies; the edible kind) and I think that ought to count.

I would rather fly to another continent than go by ship. Aside from preferring to spend my vacation at the destination and not on the vehicle, I also feel that, these days, cruise ships are to traveling what the United States is to countries. A lot of good about it, but what’s bad is appalling.

If you’re wondering why the sky is blue, I can certainly answer that: sunlight is made up of six (seven if you count indigo, which, why would you?) colors, with red being the longest wavelength and violet being the shortest. So when the sun’s light passes through the earth’s atmosphere, the light gets broken down into its individual color/wavelengths, much the same way it does when passing through a prism, or raindrops (hence, the rainbow, duh). Each air particle acts as its own little prism, and the shorter the wavelength of the respective color, the more it will be dispersed. Yes, violet is the most widely-dispersed color, but blue (the next most widely-dispersed) is more easily seen by human eyes. So the bottom line is that the sky is not blue at all. It just appears blue to us.

As to why the night sky is black, let’s review what creates the color illusion in the first place. Sunlight. Where’s the sunlight at night? Next question, foo.

My name is from the Greek, and it means “defender of mankind.” My Hebrew name, Yehudith, was a minor character in the Bible who defended Israel against the Assyrians by decapitating their leader. I am not nearly as badass as my names suggest.

I think it’s fairly obvious about me that I would prefer to explore outer space than the depths of the earth’s oceans. There’s just so much more potential out there. However, I am quite interested in the oceans, as well. I didn’t mean to be. Chris McKay talked about how oceanic life as discovered during just the past dozen or so years has opened possibilities for life that were never before plausible: the difference, as Carl Sagan probably would have said, between “no life forms” and “no life as we know it” (emphasis mine). I don’t think we can know what we’re looking for in outer space unless we know how to look for it here. And of course, we have to look for life. We don’t like being alone.

Oh, word association; how I love thee:

The first word that comes to my mind when I see the word “air” is “breathe.” Which I’m having some difficulty with at the moment. I’ve caught some dread disease from That Man of Mine, despite taking vitamin C with zinc every day since well before cold and flu season started. So I am congested, and I am running a temperature, which is awesome, because what do you do, eh? Feed the cold or starve the fever?

When I see the word “meat,” I think of “sirloin.” I have top sirloins defrosting. I will have to cook them myself if I don’t want to be handed a scrap of grayish jerky. Which means, now that I come to think of it, that I will be feeding my cold.

The word “different” just reminds me of me. My whole life, I have been the one of these things that is not like the others. It has taken me nearly forty-three years to accept this fact.

We talked about the word “pink” last week. Not only is that little red coat the first thing I think of when I see the word “pink,” it’s the only thing I think of. Learn the right names for things, people.

When I see the word “deserve”, I am reminded that “just deserts” isn’t about sweets, it’s about getting what you deserve. Anyone who spells it like “how can you have your pudding if you don’t eat your meat” dessert, is wrong. Not everyone knows this. I am Here to Help.

That, by the way, was another classic rock reference. Shut up.

The word “white” reminds me of one of those Dick and Jane-type stories where the boy had three cookies and one of them was white. I was very confused by this. When the Mom made cookies, they were brown, or brown with darker brown polka-dots, or sometimes yellowish, but never white. I was about eight or nine before I saw lemon cooler cookies (which were yellow on the inside, but definitely white on the outside), and it was too late, because I was way past Dick and Jane by then.

The word “Elvis”, of course, reminds me of Hound Dog. We were just talking about that. But if we hadn’t been, I probably would have been thinking of Fat Vegas Elvis, because you can’t go to the supermarket in my town without running into an Elvis.

“Magic” reminds me of my sweet babboo, Andy Martello, who just wrote a book. Get yours.

The next word on the list was “heart,” so I’m glad I didn’t read ahead, because then “magic” would have reminded me of Magic Man by Heart, and I would have forgotten to plug Andy’s book. That said, when I go back and try to get “heart” all by itself (as opposed to Alone, another song by Heart), I’m reminded of Glitch in the miniseries Tin Man, telling Wyatt Cain to have a heart, because it wasn’t obvious enough that they were riffing off The Wizard of Oz. You should watch that, by the way, if you haven’t already seen it. It’s on Netflix.

“Clash” reminded me of Rock the Casbah, which, thank gourd, because otherwise it would’ve reminded me of Kevin Clash, whom I would just as soon never hear about ever again, because Elmo was plenty annoying even before all the nasty allegations.

Finally, “pulp” reminds me of fiction, but “pulp fiction” reminds me of dime-store novels before it reminds me of Quentin Tarantino.

If I could meet any person in the world, who has already died, I think I wouldn’t mind meeting Mohammad. I think I’d ask him, “Seriously, is this what you meant?”

If I could meet anyone in the world, still alive, I’d skip Liam Neeson. No one wants only one opportunity to be witty and scintillating with someone, only to stammer, “Krull sucked,” and then go hide under a sofa. No, I’d like to meet Mark Gatiss. First of all, he’s brilliant, and second of all, I like him as Mycroft. That would be a conversation in which I would have a chance at not humiliating myself.

Having got that out of the way, I could totally watch the 1998 Liam Neeson version of Les Misérables every day from today till the day the world ends, and yes, that includes having it playing on a loop inside a mausoleum in which I am interred. That is a serious fucking movie, and a serious fucking performance, because even in a crap movie like Krull, they make Liam Neeson stand in the background next to a horse and he acts the hell out of it. I wish he would stop making action films so someone would finally give him the Oscar he should have earned for Schindler’s List.

Mark Gatiss will never have an Oscar and I’m okay with that; in fact, I think he’s okay with it, too.

I’ve talked before about how to get out of a stuck elevator, but the next question specifies that, if you were going to be stuck in an elevator for a week, what would you bring with you to occupy yourself? To answer, I think I would spend most of my time trying to figure out how to pee in a stuck elevator for a whole week without becoming overwhelmed by pee fumes.

That’s really a rubbish question, innit?

If I were stuck somewhere (with a working loo), and needed to bring something with me to occupy myself, I think I’d bring The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (including the Sonnets). I crack it about once a year, but I’ve never done it cover to cover. With nothing else to do, this could be the time.

This could, possibly, also be the time I’d be able to read Hamlet without hearing the RSC in my mind, chanting “Maybe, maybe not!” in falsetto, but I’m gonna guess, probably not.

I have had my life saved, specifically, by the medical staff at Centennial Hills, but I imagine the Mom probably pulled me out of the path of a moving vehicle more than once during my childhood.

I only ever saved one person’s life (other than calling 911 and summoning EMTs to do the actual lifesaving): I once pulled a rather douchey drunk boy to a sitting position at a party, so that, when he started unconsciously puking (which he did, mere moments later), he wouldn’t drown. He didn’t (and presumably still doesn’t) remember. Considering how great my emetophobia is, I’m surprised I didn’t leave him there to do the Bon Scott all by himself.

There’s another classic rock reference for you whippersnappers. Shut up.


drinking: hot tea with lemon and ginger
listening to: Eric Calderone, Doctor Metal
wishing: i could breathe

how many questions

Part of me is worried I’ll get bored with this before I finish; the rest of me is worried that you’ll get bored with this before I finish.

No matter. I am not going to let a little thing like distraction stop me, unless oh there are those earrings; I couldn’t remember where I took them off.

I am not really sure what to say when I am asked who I am. My name is just what I’m called. Writing is just what I love; working for the company with the fleet of chocolatey-brown trucks is just what I do for money; my hair color, body size, and clothing are just how I look. I guess who I am is the person whose silliness everyone else pretty much has to put up with.

The three most important things … wait.

I think I might have done this meme already.

Hang on, kids. I might be able to let you out early.

(Really, I could have sworn that I’d remember if I answered five thousand questions in one go, but these questions look awfully familiar.)

Oops. Sorry. Apparently I stopped after the first twenty-five. See above about distractions. Sit back down.

That Man of Mine has always been rather good about displaying his affection by providing me with some incredibly fattening and delicious food, or by eating my incredibly fattening and delicious food to keep me healthy. He did both not twelve hours ago, when we made one of those midnight diner runs you can really only do when you’re solvent, off work the following day, and childless. I ordered a new item, Down-Home Dixie Meatloaf, which turned out to be their regular meatloaf (which is pretty good stuff, though nowhere near as good as my own, let alone the Mom‘s), only BREADED, and served atop a split biscuit that had been GRIDDLED, in BUTTER, then topped in BACON, and served with MASHED POTATOES and SAUSAGE GRAVY. It was so good, I kept having to ask in between bites (and sips of coffee), “Oh, my gourd, Blueberry Hill, are you fucking kidding me?” Which was the cue for That Man of Mine to start stealing bites off my plate. That’s how I know he cares.

I think it was Dave Foley who ridiculed Sarah Palin for saying, “The science isn’t in on that yet” (or something like it) because the science can never be in on anything, by definition. I mean, when Einstein discovered that energy did, in fact, equal mass multiplied by the velocity of light in centimeters per second, he did not say, “Well, the science is in,” and retire. I kind of feel the same way about myself. While Sarah Palin may be certain of her own personal knowledge, I believe mine to be an ongoing process and, if I learn something amazing today, that only means I have the potential to learn something even more amazing tomorrow.

That said, if I could learn to do three things just by wishing and not having to work for them, I’d like to be able to speak (and read) Cyrillic Russian, and I’d like to understand macroeconomics better than I do, and I’d like to become a killer guitarist and astrophysicist like Brian May.

When it comes to other people, I tend to better remember how they make me feel rather than the exact words they use to make me feel that way, but if their deeds are significant to me, I will remember them well: good or bad.

I am not sure there are three key ingredients to a good relationship and, if there are, I’m not sure there are only three. Having a really good sense of humor helps. Knowing when to stand your ground and knowing when it’s not worth a fight; that’s kind of important. Helping each other. Incidentally, I think these could probably apply to any relationship, including work, friendships, and parenting.

Three things I want to do before I die: see the Aurora Borealis; finish paying off all my medical bills; and have Liam Neeson kiss me the way he kissed Peter Sarsgaard in Kinsey.

Conversely, the three things I want to die never having done are: eating bugs; being left in a persistent vegetative state for longer than one week; and getting hit in the face with a sockful of poo. I am not making this up. Someone did this to a passenger on the CTA about a year ago. Because having to root for the Cubs wasn’t punishment enough, I guess.

I wish I could say that one cause or charity is more worthwhile than another. I personally believe in literacy campaigns, because a person who learns to read can then go forth and work toward another worthwhile cause, but I’m totally willing to agree that I’m not necessarily right about that.

When I think of the 1910s, I think of Titanic. The steamship, not the 1997 film with plot holes bigger than the one the iceberg made.

When I think of the 1920s, I think of those fringed flapper skirts. I always wanted to be tall and slender enough to wear a flapper skirt. Put me in a flapper skirt, and the fringe would drag on the floor.

When I think of the 1930s, I think of Annie, and the song “We’d Like to Thank You, Herbert Hoover.” I was about ten or eleven when I first listened to that album, and it made me go look up the Great Depression in the World Book Encyclopedia, which is what we used to do before our first, kerosene-powered Internet was available for research and Grumpy Cat pictures.

The 1940s just reminds me of the Mom. She was born in 1940. One of my favorite stories about her during the early ’40s was that she had a dolly named Josephine. There are photos of her, dressed in a little wool coat and hood, with leggings, and mittens, looking like a Campbell Soup Kid, and holding Josephine in her arms. When she got older, she was told that Josephine had started existence not as a doll, but as a toy rabbit. Apparently, the Mom had pulled poor Josephine’s ears off. Now you try to think of the ’40s without thinking of that.

When I think of the ’50s, I think of Grease. I know the movie was some ’70s-filtered version of the ’50s, but you say ’50s and I think circle skirts and saddle shoes and jukeboxes. You’re just going to have to accept that about me.

I never think about the early ’60s. I’m too young to remember where I was when Kennedy was assassinated. I wasn’t even a twinkle in my father’s eye yet. He didn’t meet the Mom till the late ’60s, which remind me of trippy music and groovy clothing and going to the moon. Incidentally, although I was, by this point, a twinkle in my father’s eye, I would not be born till the very beginning of the next decade, so I don’t remember any of this stuff firsthand either.

This brings us to the ’70s, which is when I started having life signs and memories, too many to recount. Here is one of my memories from the 1970s: the girl down the street got a new coat. When she wore it, she looked so pretty. I wanted the same coat, but when the Mom asked what kind of coat I wanted, I told her I wanted light red fur, because, in my head, light red is to red what light blue is to blue. So my gramma got me a red plush coat, and I tried not to be sad, because it was a very nice coat. At some point, we saw the girl down the street, and I asked the Mom, “What color is her coat?” and that’s when I learned the word pink. I decided I was always going to try to know the right word for things from then onward.

The ’80s: when the only thing bigger than my earrings were my bangs. I was in the cafeteria on January 28th, 1986. I had swapped my study hall with my lunch period because the A/V squad would be rolling in a television for the shuttle launch. I had a salad because I had weighed myself that morning and I was up to 104 pounds, which was humongous compared to everyone else in the city, let alone at my high school. The caff was noisy and I couldn’t hear the telly. I thought everything was fine. It wasn’t till the principal came in that everyone shut up, and that’s when we found out that the Challenger had exploded. After school, I said, “Fuck my fat arse,” and the GolfBrother and I went to Burger King. I had small fries and a diet Pepsi (they weren’t a Coca Cola house in those days, and other than water, Pepsi was their only diet beverage). The GolfBrother had two Whoppers®, large fries, large soda, and finished my fries. He may also have gotten up and bought another sandwich. He never gained an ounce, the brat. I spent most of the rest of the day watching Peter Jennings, who got tireder and tireder (and, I understand, smoked a cigarette even though he had quit), but wouldn’t stop reporting, because he wanted to make sure we were informed.

During the ’90s, I started (and stopped) working for the hotel industry. Most of what I remember from those years was being terribly overworked and terribly underpaid. I had my own, grown-up place, though. My roommates had fun parties, most of which I would have to miss due to having to leave for work. When we gave up that place and I got my own apartment, they stuck me with a bunch of bills they were supposed to have paid, and since my name was also on them, I paid them. I have not been caught up, financially, since.

In 2000, That Man of Mine and I kissed each other once an hour for each time the new year ticked over in the next time zone. (I had to pay attention to each one because I was working for a software company and everyone had Y2Kphobia.) Other stuff happened that decade, but that was a pretty good one.

In the 2010s, I guess the bit I remember most hasn’t, strictly speaking, happened yet: in ten calendar days, someone in my office is going to hand me a certificate and I’ll get an extra five vacation days per year, because the 19th will mark my fifth year answering phones for the company with the chocolatey-brown trucks. So far, they don’t seem to think I’m a budgetary constraint, so go me.

I suppose the 2010s is the decade to which I feel the greatest connection; mind you, I take Neurontin, so it’s also the only decade I recall with any great clarity, and that, only 2014 for sure—and it’s only been 2014 for a little over a week. Neurontin, in case you hadn’t surmised, sucks dogs for loose change.

That’s got to be enough for now, doesn’t it? There are five fucking thousand questions and I haven’t even made a dent in them. It must be time for a nap by now.



drinking: ice water
listening to: Imagine Dragons, Demons
just remembered who i am: i am sher locked.

happy new here

O hai.

Sorry. I have a million excuses, none of them really good, most of them having to do with life, work, writing non-publishable stuff, and Candy Crush.

But I miss here, and so, here I am.

When I was in high school, my favorite musical artists were people like the Ramones and the Who, but they weren’t my favorite ones to look at. Mind you, those of them who didn’t die before they got old definitely aged better than, say, Axel Rose, or Vince Neil.

My favorite game show host, ever ever ever, is probably Gene Rayburn, because he was the host of my favorite game show ever ever ever (Match Game). As far as today’s game shows are concerned, I skip most of them. I rather like Bill Engvall hosting Lingo. And I do think that Drew Carey’s entire career up to this point was just preparation for him to do The Price is Right, which is in no way stating that I think he is better at it than was Bill Cullen (let alone Bob Barker, or even Dennis James).

I think WordPress is the best blog-hosting service I have ever used, but I cannot say I don’t miss the now-defunct Blogcharm, which paid you (a few pennies, but still) based on your traffic. I made something like $15 from using Blogcharm for a year, which is ever so much preferable to having to give that same $15 to Andrew at Diarrhealand.

If I could meet anyone again from my childhood (excluding people I’m still in touch with but haven’t seen since then; and family members), I think I’d like to see my fifth-grade teacher. She didn’t just encourage me to write, she taught me art appreciation and music theory and probably a ton of stuff that wasn’t anywhere near the curriculum. I think I would make her my chicken tikka masala. She’d be impressed.

When I was a tiny kid, I wanted to live in England; specifically, the house in the country that had an applewood wardrobe that was bigger on the inside. Now that I’m a grownup, I want to live in England, because the phone box that’s bigger on the inside only tried to visit Vegas once, and it got stuck in a Soviet submarine during the Cold War. I don’t expect they’ll try that trip again.

I think that the most interesting bit of trivia I know is that fresh cranberries bounce. Seriously. You can dribble them like teensy basketballs. I wish they’d show that on one of those Ocean Spray middle-of-the-bog commercials.

If I could live in any point in history, I can’t really picture myself living in one where women aren’t allowed to speak their minds, which leaves out, pretty much, most of it. I guess I would pick the sixties, so I could dress like a hippie and offend my parents.

The most interesting job I ever had was my first hotel job, in the early ’90s. I am not saying it was a great job. But it was never boring. It was sufficiently interesting that, when I got fed up with that company, I switched jobs to another hotel. It would be seven years before I realized that all hotels are, from the staff’s standpoint, identical … and not in a good way. But interesting.

Here is a middle-school memory: I had a question for the band teacher, which turned into a conversation, which meant that I missed my bus, which meant that I had to take the late bus. I didn’t know anyone on it. It was a mixture of kids who had gotten held after for disciplinary reasons and girls who made beelines for the restroom, fixing their makeup and hair, dawdling long enough to miss their buses so they could ride with the bad boys. I found a seat to myself, which looked incredibly sticky, and I sat on the edge of it, praying I wouldn’t fall in front of a whole busful of people far cooler than myself. One of the bad boys told one of the poufy-haired lipglossed girls to suck his balls. When I got home, I had to look that one up in the Mom’s Dictionary of American Slang. From then on, whenever I had a question for Mr. G., I’d write him a note and shove it under his office door on my way to my locker.

My favorite Beatles song is Here, There, and Everywhere. I wanted that to be my processional when I got married, which was my cue to find a man who hates everything the Beatles stand for. We eloped.

My most comfortable outfit has changed drastically from what it used to be. I used to favor huge sweaters that hid my imperfections. Nowadays, with my internal thermostat pretty well jacked up for life, I think my favorite outfit is my denim shorts and my sheer snakeskin-patterned blouse (I wear a black tank top under it), with my sparkly flip-flops. I know I probably don’t look as good as I feel, but I don’t give a fuck.

When it comes to parties, I used to throw pretty decent ones. My rule was simple – I didn’t invite anyone who wouldn’t make allowances for anything that went wrong. I don’t really feel like going to parties anymore. I usually have to sacrifice something else in order to have enough energy. And if you think I’m too pooped to party, imagine how little I care for the idea of planning one.

I don’t know if we’ll ever move entirely from paper books to digital. I mean, I reckoned that by 2000 we’d all be using credit cards instead of paper money, and I was wrong. I think we’ll have both forever. I don’t mind digital books. I still like the smell of an actual book, but there is so much to be said for being able to carry all your books in a tiny box the size of a single paperback. Where was this idea when I had five different kinds of homework every day?

I think I learn best by experiencing. Even if I read a manual, I have to try it out before it makes sense to me.

When I was single, the main kiss of death for anyone of the opposite sex was not liking to read, or not understanding why I like to read. I met a guy at a party, and he was hot. I asked him what kind of books he liked, and he said, “I don’t read books. I like Spy Magazine and the Wall Street Journal.” And suddenly, he didn’t look even remotely cute anymore.

I feel uncomfortable when people assume you can only prefer one kind of snack: either salty or sweet. To me, preferable to either one is a combination of the two: fries dunked in milkshake; caramel topped with gray salt; a handful of Sno-Caps tossed into my popcorn at the movies … yes, I am fully aware that I’m allergic to dairy and chocolate. I will take my chances.

When I look around myself in a four-foot radius, I notice that there is a box of Wolverine trading cards under the desk. I don’t know why they’re there. I don’t know how long they’ve been there. I only know that, if That Man of Mine doesn’t get rid of them, I will start offering them to my friends.

My favorite Tom Cruise movie is Legend, mostly because it’s not really a Tom Cruise movie: it’s a fantasy movie that happens to have a pre-sofabouncing Tom Cruise in it.

I don’t expect miracles from shampoo. I have never really used one that made my hair bouncier, more manageable, stronger, thicker, or sexier. When I buy shampoo, I have two criteria: it has to clean my hair, and it has to smell good. I currently use Pantene Co-Wash, because it’s less expensive than Lisa Rachel’s Conditioning Cleanser, which is less expensive than Wen. Anyway, because this is the type of hair-cleaner I like, if I ever bought a brand that did something really wrong to my hair, I couldn’t use it for other purposes (such as washing my makeup brushes – for that, I use Softsoap), because it doesn’t lather. So I would probably write a scathing letter of complaint to the manufacturer, and then I would give it a negative rating on Amazon, to let the next buyer beware, and to make myself feel better about my bald spot or my green highlights.

My favorite springtime comfort food is the orange. Even though I live close enough to the West Coast that I can have oranges year-round, the first one I have in April is the one that makes me feel like spring has finally arrived.

That’s all I have at the moment. But I showed up, and that ought to count for something.


drinking: ice water
listening to: Radkey, Out Here in My Head
favorite holiday gift: penguin bracelet

can’t bear it

Time was, blogging was what I did in the morning before my shower, at work, and any time I had an idea that was just begging to be shared with someone who got it.

Now, blogging is what I wait to do till after I have had an update from the doctor.

Which sucks for the blog, but not for my writing.

See, writing is what I do in the evening before my shower (‘cos of working nights), and maybe, someday, it will be a novel.

I still like the cat better than all the human characters combined but, as any cat will tell you, that’s as it should be.

I could, conceivably, blog at work, but only during my breaks, and only on my Android, because thou shalt not use the work computers for business not relating to chocolaty-brown trucks, forsooth. And blogging on my Android is, to my way of thinking, only for emergencies, since it’s very like texting, which I hate. So.

As far as any time I have an idea just begging to be shared with someone, I Tweet it.

Note: I don’t worry anymore about whether anyone gets me. I console myself with getting everyone else.

Like, yesterday, David Feldman (the Imponderables™ guy) posted a picture on Facebook of a sign in a gift shop that said, “The Gift Shop will Temporarily Be Open 24 Hours.”

I thought that was hysterical.

I also noticed the sign was listed “Boyd Gaming,” which is the company for which That Man of Mine works, and found out that David Feldman had been at Gold Coast, about fifteen minutes drive from here, and I never knew it, which sucks not a little.

Then I told That Man of Mine about the sign and he told me there is one JUST LIKE IT in the casino where he works. He just never found it funny.

It’s times like this that I want to go into a store and buy a big plush bear head like the Bloggess, and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, you need to be over at her blog instead of here, because she wrote some seriously funny shit about the aforementioned bear head, and all I got up in here is, “Damn, I love me some clicky-pens.”

‘Cos I don’t lose the caps.

Oh, never mind.

Anyway, I sent a link to the bear-head story to That Man of Mine, and his only response to it was, “It’s nice to know someone else’s wife is as crazy as mine.”

Yeah. At least my crazy earns a little money now and again. His crazy is baseball cards. They won’t be worth anything unless a player dies or does something brilliant. The player he has the most cards of, Roger Clemens, is best known for doing … anabolic steroids.

Fucking brilliant, that.

And now we get to the bit where I tell you what the doctor said: namely, nothing.

Seriously. I haven’t heard back from the surgeon since my MRI.

The MRI, incidentally, was super-annoying this time. The woman who performed it was older, and when I told her I’d like ’80s music in my earphones, she chose to interpret that as Christopher Cross and Eddie Rabbitt.

Next time I’m asking for thrash. Then I’m going to headbang and make sure they have to take extra pictures of everything.

The endocrinologist was of no use, either. She has chosen to forget that she told me she would give me something for weight loss if I continued to work out this hard and not lose any weight. She just told me my weight was fine and not to worry, and I asked her for a note for my primary, who says I need to lose about thirty more pounds (I wouldn’t say no to fifty, myself) and she laughed.

Because I am ever so funny.

Also, I am having severe hot flashes due to my Hashimoto’s syndrome, and she gave me blood pressure meds for them.

My blood pressure was, when her own fucking nurse checked it, 104/61.

I have taken exactly one-half of one pill. It made me dizzy and did nothing for my hot flashes.

I’m hanging onto the rest of the pills, though.

I may need them if another fucking Roger Clemens card comes into this apartment.


drinking: ice water
listening to: Katy Perry, Roar
today’s nail color: haven’t decided yet. thinking about blue


I’m getting worse at this than I used to be.

Not at the writing bit. I write at least a little bit every day. I just don’t always get it on out there, as it were.

When the news never changes, and one can update more people quickly via social media than through one’s blog, which no one is really, for all intents and purposes, reading anymore anyway, there seems little point.

I still do it, though.

Mostly to prove to everyone that I, unlike some, know the difference between “intents and purposes” and “intensive purposes.”

The past fortnight has been somewhat draining.

The surgeon wants me to have another MRI before we can schedule anything. Pain relief through science, delayed by paperwork, yet again.

I threw my hat into a ring and got it back all smashed and covered with footprints, dust, and a smear of dog poo off the bottom of someone’s shoe.

I just found out that the reason Miss Hiss doesn’t blog anymore is that she has gone to that great Blog Hall of Fame, where she was greeted by Cosmic, Violet, Witty Kitty, and Jim of Jim’s Journal.

I am thankful not to have that as an excuse not to blog myself, though, so here I am.

I think green eyes are sexiest, but I like blue eyes better. I don’t have to think something is sexy to like it. That Man of Mine is a case in point. His eyes, incidentally, are brown. I don’t know what that says about me.

Given a choice, based on flavor, I prefer dark semisweet chocolate, but given no choice based on my chocolate allergy, I prefer white chocolate, which isn’t even really proper chocolate, but at least I don’t get hives.

If I could get a Sharpie tattoo on my back, I’m not sure I would. While I very much like the idea of a tattoo that I could test drive before I wound up with it embedded in my skin, most of the Sharpie tattoos I’ve seen look amateurish and smeary, and that’s not bound to be a good indicator of how an actual needle tattoo will look once it’s done. Besides, getting anything printed on one’s back is dicey. One can’t see what the other person is doing. St. George of Carlin, the patron saint of Golfwidowism, himself once said he wanted a tattoo on his back that said, “Let’s Not Tell Him All the Shit We Put On His Back. He Thinks It’s a Pirate Ship.”  So, assuming I could find an artist who would do a professional-looking Sharpie tattoo, that I could easily afford (meaning, free, since it won’t be permanent), in a place I could watch it being done, I’d get the design I actually want: a tribal band of penguins marching round my right upper arm.

I grew up in a city large enough to have an entry in the Merriam Webster Dictionary but small enough that they didn’t get a Sonic Drive-In even in the same state till after I moved to Las Vegas (which has two Sonics within a one-mile radius of my home).

When I was a child, my favorite adult (excluding my relatives) was probably Mr. Rogers. He wore sneakers, and sweaters that his mom knitted, just like me.

If I were going to be drinking a smoothie right now, it’d probably be the Cherry Charger from Jamba Juice. Since Jamba stopped carrying cherry juice in, I think, 2002, I would like that served in a TARDIS, please.

My most embarrassing elementary school moment was probably that time in kindergarten when I had to pee whilst I was in gym class (which was not yet known as Physical Education or P.E. in our school system, and which did not take place in a gym, but in the lunchroom, which was not a cafeteria) and I asked three times, but the teacher told me I could wait, three times, till I peed my pants, in front of everybody, and the Mom had to bring me clean clothes, and the teacher told the Mom she would have let me go, but I had never asked, which was a lie. In retrospect, I blame that horrible woman, but I don’t feel any less embarrassed by it, and it’s very possible that the main reason I have never become famous is that there’s a small part of my subconscious that doesn’t want this to come out in a tell-all exposé by one of my classmates, some thirty-five years after the fact.

If my only choices are either pirates or ninjas, let it be ninjas, but I don’t think either one would be of any use against a Dalek.

There. That ought to hold everyone for a while.


drinking: tea
listening to: Van Morrison, Beside You
why not ice water: it’s 8 am and i need to wake up a bit

it’s dandy for your teeth

I skipped last week, as I’m sure no one noticed, but if you’re wondering what I was thinking last week, just read the post from the week before. I didn’t feel like burdening anyone with reruns.


I got a mostly-clean bill of health from my oncologist. One more CT scan and she’ll declare my lymph nodes officially just “wonky-looking” and not “cancerous.” She’s also not angry about my weight gain, which was what was bothering me the most. She said I looked more toned and that my labs were good, so she’s not worried about the number.

I’m worried about the number, but she’s the one with the medical degree.

As regards my spinal cord stimulator, I don’t even get to see the surgeon for a consultation till the 28th, and the pain specialist won’t do an epidural if I’m “about” to have surgery, even if the reason the surgery was delayed was that her staff sent incomplete referrals, not once, but twice, and both times the surgeon’s office called them back and asked for more information, which they did not get till That Man of Mine marched into the pain specialist’s office and told the staff, very patiently (for him) how to send a faxed referral.

So I’m in hella pain, because of paperwork.

I didn’t see the pain specialist this month. I saw the P.A. He is fantastic about listening to me. And after I vented about the fucking GOONS in the office, he scripted me up for a higher dose of oxycodone, and if these don’t work, I have to come back in and get Opana, which is oxymorphone.

Crap, something better start working before I turn into a junkie.

Although, I must say, I am hoping, just a little bit, that I will need the oxymorphone, so I can go around singing, “Brush-a brush-a brush-a, here’s the new Opana …”

I know I’m showing my age. It couldn’t be helped. I switched from baby powder to Shower-to-Shower. Now I smell slightly less immature. So anyone who doesn’t know me might be fooled.

I did want to talk about Doctor Who, for a quick second, even though most of you are not Whovians.

I’m not sure I’m a Whovian. I prefer to think of myself as a Whooligan.


The only thing I can think in terms of Peter Capaldi being the next Doctor is that, once again, the BBC have proven that they only have a total of three actors.

Also, I think Moffat’s going to kill off Eleven before the Christmas special (in other words, during the 50th anniversary special), but I don’t have any proof of that, just the fact that Moffat’s reputation for doing things just to make me sob uncontrollably during a fucking television program precedes him.

And that’s it, except for me to tell you this story, because I can’t really tell anyone else.

That Man of Mine, great as he is at being my health advocate, is also great at royally Pissing Me Off.

He needs to learn not to do that.

But he won’t.

So I ate a salad, and then.


I might, accidentally, have picked my teeth with a baseball card.

I said. I only smell less immature.


drinking: ice water
listening to: Taio Cruz, Dynamite
teeth: free of radicchio

at least tears have flavor

In the story that is my life, I am being inundated with plot twists of the sort perpetrated by people who get paid an awful lot to be not particularly good writers.

Shall we start with the fact that I’m basically eating food that only tastes “okay” to me (because the stuff that tastes good is unhealthy), and working out regularly … and have GAINED TEN POUNDS?

I feel like hitting someone. I just haven’t yet worked out whose fault this is.

Match this up with trying to improve my mind but feeling stupider every day, and trying to save money only to have to cough it up for another bill, and I’m feeling incredibly craptastic at the moment.

Why don’t I just go ahead and get really fucking fat and go on welfare? That’s where I’m going to wind up anyway if these trends continue.

Because, if I give up, the terrorists win.

If you need me, I’ll be hiding under a rock, pretending celery is pretzels, and trying to learn Spanish.

(Oh, by the way, before you tell me that depriving myself is wrong — if I hadn’t, I’d have gained closer to thirty or forty pounds. So I still can’t have a cupcake.)


drinking: ice water, when I want beer
listening to: nothing
tired of: life, but not ready for the alternative

out to sea

So, working for the company of the chocolatey-brown trucks isn’t like working my last job, where we were silly and fun all the time, and always had music playing.

That is not to say that it is all work-work-work at the company of the chocolatey-brown trucks, only that we are also, by no means, all partay-partay-partay.

Which is just as well, because my last job thought I was a budgetary constraint.

I doubt it was because I listened to classic rock at my desk, but I can’t help but wonder.

Anyway, we attempt to remain professional at the CBTC, but sometimes we fail.

This has been one of those times.

Last night, one of my coworkers was talking about having seen a trailer or an ad for the film To-Do List, and one of the items on the main character’s list was motorboating, so my coworker took her tweenaged son to see it.

As it turns out, she was not aware that motorboating does not, it would seem, mean getting into a boat that has an outboard motor, and going out into the ocean for a ride.

It has another meaning.

One which, if I had a tweenaged son, I wouldn’t want to visit in a movie with him sitting right next to me, laughing his arse off.

Not that I would have known this, because, up until last night, I was perfectly confident that motorboating meant riding in a motorboat.

I, and my coworker with the tweenaged son, were not the only ones flummoxed by this.

I don’t believe any of my female coworkers knew the alternate meaning of motorboating.

My supervisor, also female, started to Google the alternate definition, then abruptly closed the browser window and advised the rest of us to refrain from surfing for it till we got home, to the privacy of our own firewalls.

Needless to say, we all immediately began badgering the only three males on shift, all of whom knew what motorboating was, and all of whom were blushing furiously, including the two African Americans.

They did not tell us.

But I said, “I’ll bet we all know what it is; we just don’t call it that.”

And, as it turned out, one of us guessed correctly, and, as I had thought, I did know what it was.

And, since the Mom reads this blog, that’s all I’m going to say about that.

Except to add that, when I asked That Man of Mine if he knew what motorboating was, he did.

I demanded that he explain why he had never clued me in on this definition before, and he said it was a guy thing.


Anyway, motorboating is not on my to-do list.

But I’m adding crew-rowing, kayaking, and yachting to it, just in case those terms have alternate meanings as well.

(I rather hope crew-rowing does. I think it would be fun to call a man “coxswain.”)


drinking: ice water
listening to: Fantasia, Lose to Win
motorboating: gives a whole new meaning to deep-sea fishing


I have always wanted a blue guitar. I don’t play. It’s not worth me having one. But I still want it. Curse you, Nancy Wilson (from Heart, not the jazz singer).

I don’t shave my legs, because I cut myself pretty badly once. However, I use Veet for Sensitive Skin, and during summertime in the desert, I use it a lot, because I don’t like wearing shorts with even a tiny bit of stubble. I used it this morning, so there isn’t a single strand of hair on my legs at the moment. If I were courageous, I’d go out with hairy legs, but I am a product of my culture. I get grossed out myself when I see a woman on the street (or in le Mart du Wal, where I see it most often) who, in my mind, didn’t bother to shave, so obviously I have been brainwashed.

Semper Fidelis means “Always Faithful.” One isn’t allowed to be married to a former jarhead without knowing this.

I used to say I would rather swim in a lake than an ocean (I don’t care for waves when I’m in the water, although they’re okay if I’m walking on the beach), but my brother-in-law just sent me a captioned photo of this diving bell spider that lives almost completely underwater, and I’m guessing it meant freshwater, so fuck lakes.

I used to wear black and gray a lot, almost constantly, because it was a good way to fade into the background. I don’t kid myself that black is more flattering if one is fat … if one’s clothing doesn’t fit right, no color will look good. When I finally decided to step out of the shadows, I filled my wardrobe (gradually, and cheaply, by making use of sales at le Mart du Wal and lot purchases from eBay®) with jewel tones and funky patterns, and I guess it’s working, because one of the managers at the company of the chocolatey-brown trucks advised some of my coworkers that she wished everyone dressed like me, since I always look so pretty, professional, and put-together. And I managed this without $5000 and a visit from Stacey London, so there.

My hair is super cute. I’m wearing it quite short because it’s more comfortable in the desert in summertime. I had them use a #3 clipper around the back last time and cut the rest to about one inch layers. TS Toe’s first words when he saw me last month were “Your hair is so short!” and I told him I fell asleep in the chair. I tend to wear really cute earrings when my hair is this short, just to make sure no one thinks I’m a boy; that is, before they get a glimpse of my incredibly impressive rack. Anyway, the color right now is dark brown, with a few grays naturally-occurring crystalline highlights.

I am normally a rational person, but I have entomophobia and arachnophobia (see above paragraph about swimming in the lake) and no amount of intellectualization on my part when bugs aren’t around will convince me that they won’t eat me when they are around. I turn into a scaredy-cat when it comes to bugs, and it’s humiliating, but I can’t get past it.

I am over the age of 21 (nay, twice that), so I guess I am an adult, but I am not a grown-up and you can’t make me be one.

We rent. I hate it. I hate being poor, and I hate that the best apartment we can get with our lousy credit is this one, with the scorched bathroom sink and the dented front door, outside of which I found, the other day, a dime bag that one of my more careless neighbors dropped. I live with the riffraff. On the bright side, the apartment managers love us, because we’re quiet, and we always pay our rent on time.

I used to tan very well, but I refuse even to try anymore. I’ve heard too many horror stories about malignant melanoma. As for tanning parlors, I only have a small amount of money to spend on vanity, and I prefer to use it on super cute haircuts and adorable (but inexpensive, because I go to le Mart du Wal) manicures.

I have the telly on pretty much all the time, but I’m not always watching it. I read whilst it’s on; I sleep whilst it’s on; we leave it on when we leave the house. I wouldn’t say I’m addicted to television. I will say that, the other day, I was watching A-Team, and That Man of Mine said we had to leave for work. Before I left, I stuck my head back into the bedroom (where the telly is) and said to it, “Liam? Bye, honey. My husband’s making me go with him. There’s juice in the fridge and I think there’s some hot water left if you want a shower.” (What? That Man of Mine has been making me roll my eyes for years. It’s time I made him roll his.)

I used to love spending time with my mother-in-law. She passed away in 2010 and I miss her. I love my sisters-in-law and my stepmother-in-law. I think the reason we get along so well is that we never spend any time together except on Facebook.

I am not a sugar freak. Even less so than I was: I gave up refined sugar and white flour for the past two months in an attempt to detox. It has been absolutely determined that I’m not a sugar freak — but I am a bread ho. See me on the 16th, when my detox ends. You’ll probably find me at La Bocce, shoving pizza into my mouth like it’s my job. (I won’t. Now that I know I can do this, I will be doing this most of the week, and on my cheat days, I will be eating, at the most, a single slice of pizza. I am so tired of being fat.) I am not jonesing nearly as badly for sweets.

I have no idea what happened to Larry King. Wait; let me check — nope; don’t care.

I give less than a shit what my zodiac sign is. Astrology leaves out Ophiuchus (the serpent-bearer, a sign that ought to fall somewhere between Scorpio and Sagittarius but doesn’t, because that makes thirteen sun signs and only twelve months), which makes it patently inaccurate at best and complete bullshit at worst. I have found that, if someone tells me their sun sign and I predict, “You’re deeply sensitive, but you stand up for what you believe in,” they always reply, “Yes, that’s right.” When I am asked for my sign, I tell them I’m a Penguin, with Parrot rising, and that Penguin personalities tend to do their own thing without worrying about some random constellation 66 light years from where they’re actually having to deal with their days.

I can’t remember the last time I made a wish on my birthday. I haven’t even had birthday cake, except at work, in the past few years. The year before last, we were avoiding Retro Bakery because That Man’s sugar was out of control, and last year, I was too sick to want cake, which is pretty fucking sick. Anyway, even before that, I can’t recall when I last had candles on a cake. I blame the Neurontin. I did make a wish on the tip of a slice of pie two months ago (dessert of my last refined-sugar meal before detoxing): I said to myself: “I wish this pie wouldn’t make me fat.”

I ripped these questions off from the Mom, but she did this ages ago and probably doesn’t remember where she got it. At the time, she said she got it from Z’s World, who might have gotten it from Sunday Stealings.

I used to skip breakfast, but I can’t do that anymore. Some of my meds need to be taken on an empty stomach, but if I want the rest of them, particularly my pain meds, I have to eat something. I do not tend to eat the full Denny’s-style 1,500-calorie breakfast. Multi-grain toast or high-fiber cereal with soy milk is usually good enough for me. If I want the calorie-laden breakfast at all, I’m more apt to have it for dinner, since I can’t finish it in one sitting.

I have no idea what I would name the royal baby. It’s not my baby to name, and I don’t know the protocol. I know they need a fuckton of names. I’m going to go with Jacqueline Andrea Suzette Prentice Tyler Mountbatten-Windsor. Go me, incidentally, not only for knowing Prince William’s surname, but for remembering Jackie Tyler’s entire name. It’s more than Pete Tyler could do.

I don’t buy newspapers at all anymore, ever. I read the RJ online, and if we need newsprint, we buy $10 worth of gas at the AM/PM across from our apartment, Monday through Saturday, and they give us a free one. I don’t miss the newspaper. I prefer reading the comics online anyway, particularly Dog Eat Doug, which is my new favorite since Charles M. Schulz died and Lynn Johnston sold out.

I’m pretty sure most of those factoids were repeats, but I don’t much care. I’m not at all sure who’s paying attention these days, anyway.


drinking: ice water
listening to: Candlebox, Far Behind
tired of: erick erickson. he needs a nice cold glass of shut the fuck up

ask a silly question …

… and you get a metric fuckload of silly answers.

I have been given a total of two engagement rings. The first engagement was a complete waste of both of our time and energy. I tried to throw give the ring back, but he said it was mine. It wasn’t worth much, but I sold it and bought myself a string of nice pearls. Every woman should have pearls. Anyway, I’m still wearing the second engagement ring (along with its bestie, the wedding band), but on my index finger, because, although they were tight when I got married, and impossible to wear for years after, they’re now way too big on me. Which, yay.

This marriage is, without a doubt, the longest relationship in which I’ve been. Aside from the eleven years we’ve had paper and rings, we were a couple for a few years before that. At this point, I reckon we really mean it.

The last gift I received was a silver claddagh ring with an emerald heart, for Christkwaanzukahsticestivuseid. I didn’t get anything for my birthday due to finances (and I was too sick to go out to dinner), but I should be getting something nice for my smokeaversary, which is next month.

I dropped a cell phone into a puddle once. I stuck it in a bag of rice, but it never came back to life. I was so mad. However, it was one of those older phones, with buttons and an antenna, so it’s not like I had any vital photos saved on it or anything.

The last time I worked out, a full workout, was yesterday, but in my defense, I did do a full-body yoga stretch when I got up. I modify it to allow for my lack of balance and range of motion, but I still get all the muscles loosened up. Also, I’ll be walking later, so if I skip a full workout, I’m not going to sweat it. Heh.

In general, the only things I get to spend a lot of money on are medical bills or car repairs. I get a design on the nails of my ring fingers when I have a manicure, but I’m supposed to go every two weeks and I usually don’t even have enough money to go every four weeks. I can manage every five weeks, but my old manicure is usually quite the hot mess by then.

The last food I ate was last night, when we had hot dogs and beans because it was the fourth of July. I only had a small spoonful of beans because they raise your sugar and I’m trying to watch my carbs. That Man of Mine, the diabetic, finished the bowl.

I think the first thing I notice about the opposite sex is his facial bone structure. Eyes (and eyebrows) next, then his smile. If I can get close enough, I will check out his aftershave.

I don’t know if I have one favorite song. I love music so much. Every time I hear something new to me, it’s my favorite. Sometimes, I re-hear something old, and that speaks to me as well: like, I finally just learned all the words to Eres Tú, but it’s not my favorite; it was just bothering me. Possibly Danny Boy. It’s so sad, but it’s one of my favorite songs to sing, and my favorite recordings of it are Eva Cassidy’s and Harry Connick, Jr.’s (his long version).

I live in North Las Vegas. Some people think that this means I live at the northern part of the Strip, but I’m just too embarrassed to say so. No. North Las Vegas is an actual city, with three post offices and Nellis Air Force Base, just in case you think we’re kidding. It takes about fifteen minutes to get from here to the Strip, but that’s cool, ‘cos we never really go there anyway. We’re locals now. We refer to this city as “Northtown,” and we know where the good off-the-strip hangouts are. If you want to go to Vegas and not be bothered by that much neon, well, we can’t help you with that, but we can take you to the supermarket, where there is much less neon, and air conditioning, and slot machines, and liquor, and red seedless grapes for 79¢ a pound.

I went to West Haven High School, in West Haven, Connecticut. West Haven is to New Haven what knock-off sneakers are to Nikes: pretty much exactly the same, and perfectly serviceable, and the pizza is just as fantastic, but without the brand-name. For the most part, when people from Vegas ask me where I’m from, I say “Connecticut,” and then they ask me if I know Aaron Hernandez. From now on, I think I’ll say I’m from “just outside New York.”

My cell phone is a Trac-Fone. If I finally commit to a carrier service, I’ll let you know. Assuming you care. I have no idea why this question was asked of anyone, let alone me, but I presume it’s important.

The last wedding I attended was two strangers. They got married in the Stations buffet. To each their own. I have higher hopes for the salad bar, which had proper olives the other day, than I do for the marriage.

My favorite fast-food restaurant is El Pollo Loco. I know the other chains claim to have what they consider healthy alternatives, but El Pollo Loco is the only one that I can pick from most of the menu and just avoid a few items. It’s the other way round with all the other fast-food joints.

That said, my real favorite fast-food restaurant, when I don’t care what I’m putting into my body, is Sonic. I will have large tots, with a side of tots, and a diet cherry-vanilla Doctor Pepper, and can I get extra tots with that, please?


drinking: ice water
listening to: Thea Gilmore, Even Gods Do
neil gaiman: fast becoming one of my favorite writers ever