Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Crazy for You

Can't we all relate to this?

Love makes fools of us all but scientists believe that it could be mistaken for psychosis.

Scientists have for the first time produced brain scans of people in the first stages of love and those who have been rejected. From these images they concluded that romance is a biological urge distinct from sexual arousal.

Writing in The Journal of Neurophysiology, the scientists from New York and New Jersey said romance was closer in its neural profile to drives such as hunger, thirst or drug craving than to excitement or affection.

However, as a relationship deepens, the neural activity alters slightly, and in some cases primes those areas involved in long-term attachment.

The research helps explain why love can make someone feel euphoria one minute then anger and anxiety the next, or prompt out-of-character behaviour, such as compulsive phone calling, serenades and yelling from the roof.

full article ... author BENEDICT CAREY

This one's for Dad

If this does not make you cry, then what is the last news story that did?

Monday, May 30, 2005


This is rather interesting especially if you're an obsessive list maker like me. :::tilts head::: I hear a certain someone laughing... be quiet!!


(Found it on Dooce)

Memorial Day

Soldiers, like Sgt. David Fisher and Private First Class Nathan Brown, and their families are the reasons for Memorial Day.

Please take a moment to read about them.

Saturday, May 28, 2005


Guess what my son and I spent a good chunk of today building?


...except, this website is slightly out of date, because on the box it said that mine had 780 pieces. They also upped the recommended age to 8+ but they're kidding themselves, there was no way he could do it alone. Maybe if he was 12.


We went to the Country Drive-in for dinner which is a classic around here. You walk up to the window to order your burgers, fries, etc, and there are huge picnic tables all around the place. It's mobbed on a summer evening.

We were about 7th in line and this chick about 3 people behind me actually whipped out her cell phone, called in an order, and smirked over her shoulder at us as she walked toward the second window(where you pickup your food). She actually SAID "I'm not waiting in this line" in a very smug tone. Obviously she was in a hurry, because she left her house looking like something the FUG girls would scrape off their shoe. Geez, comb your hair and put on a top that fits you.... So I summoned up every Karma god within earshot and muttered "Please, please". Everyone around was talking about what a jerk she was. She stood there right in front of the window with her purse on the ledge kind of tapping her foot. Grrrrr.

The kids working inside must have been on to her because she ended up waiting m-u-c-h longer than she would have if she'd just stayed put. It was with great delight that I sauntered up to the window when our number was called and said OH so sweetly "would you move out of the way please? My food is ready." Mwahahahaha. It was at least another 10-15 minutes before we saw her walk to her car. Glorious.

I don't know beans....

Check this out. It's a giant bean. Who thinks these things up?

Yesterday I went mini golfing with my son because they had a special reception for all the kids who made their First Communion last weekend. Then they let the kids out of school. (Helpful if you work... uh, I need ANOTHER day off...)

We swung by my daughter's class first to see if the teacher would let her go but she more or less said "Hi" and in a subtle way let me know we should get lost, she wouldn't be joining us. :o)

I was looking at some stuff on the wall outside the class because they hang up the children's work. They had written pieces titled "My favorite person". I was trying to find B's because I knew she wrote about my sister. So this guy L. was standing there with his son looking at them too. (R. also made his first communion and was free for the rest of the day). R starts reading one girl's story and it is about her Mom..... and how she died a couple of years ago. He's asking me what the words are and I'm telling him (things like "cancer") and I'm thinking "Oh, this is so sad!!!"

L. mumbles "I didn't see this before now" and I realize that once again I have failed to connect what is actually going on around me. I do this all the time and I hate it. I had forgotten that R.'s sister is in my daughter's class, and so I'm realizing the guy next to me is hearing for the first time his son is reading this piece that the daughter wrote about their deceased Mom.

L was actually crying a bit and I just felt so horrible. I don't really know him at all and I didn't know what to do, so after the kid was done reading I made this lame guesture of ruffling his little buzz cut and touching L's arm and saying "well I guess we're going to go, you take care now. " So lame! I couldn't scrape up a better sentence. I wanted to say more but the guy has actually remarried (I think the Mom died 3 years ago) and the new wife was coming down the hall so I figured maybe it was best to excuse myself.

Oy vey.

So off we go to mini golf, and now I'm thinking about children missing their moms, so basically if Dan had said "Let's go to Disney" I would have said "get in the car, you're on". On the first hole I shot an 8 and thought "this is going to be a very long day". I got my act together though. Around the 6th hole I thought I had forgotten to write a score down because I had actually started writing too high on the little scorecard. (I'd scan it to show you but damn Filebin is still down. Eff you all over again, hackers, and thanks JV for esssplaining it to me.) So yes, I can not even keep score for mini golf correctly. You have to laugh about things like that. He ended up beating me by 1 shot on the first 9 but the back half of the course is much harder. I realized I was ahead of him by 11 shots when we got to the last hole so I deliberately hit it very hard several times in all different directions. Shot a 12, and we tied. Who says I don't love my baby? I will completely shame myself at mini golf for him.

The sun is out. At least, I think it's the sun. I've forgotten. It's a great big yellow ball and it's warm. I'm going to sit out in the sunshine and be all sentimental and stuff.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Dear Internet and Hackers

(with apologies to Sarah, who does these letters so much better than I ever could)

You suck.

I click on ONE thing to try to look at some online cards and you screw me over. Why??? Now I can't see the pictures on my own blog. Filebin won't even talk to me without trying to install spyware on my PC. I can't see Johnny's pictures. Shamus has a picture too that I can't see. WHY???

If you're so smart can't you cure cancer or do something else USEFUL? Eff you.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Stupid people

Shamus will tell you, I email him articles like this all the time. Well, not all the time, now that my employer is going to start to pull reports on what websites we surf during :::ahem:::: work time. OOPSIE.

Well... anyway, just go read this.


Ok, everyone. I'm faced with something nearly unimaginable to me: for the next four days I have FREE TIME. NO OBLIGATIONS.

I think I need to rent a couple of good movies for Saturday night. It's been raining here for days so a cookout is pretty much not an option. There's a guy next door lining up all sorts of animals.

Bear in mind, I literally almost never go to the movies. In the past couple of years I saw Chicago, (Richard Gere just can NOT sing), Shrek(s) and Incredibles with my kids, and National Treasure. (Sin City too, I'm still queasy....)

So -- recommend away: What 3 movies should I rent for this weekend?

I'm looking for something that is:

  • Action / suspense (but not yellow smushy blood and extreme violence like SC)
  • NOT a kid's movie, thank you!
  • Not an outright Chick Flick -- love stories are fine but pick something my spouse won't hate - make it a subplot, not the main point of the movie.
  • (edited to add....) Comedies are always appreciated

Thanks!! Who loves ya, baby?

A little ditty about Jack and the Chevy

or, I love a parade....

I marched in my very first parade ever last night. How did I manage to be almost 40 and never be in a parade? No band, no girl scouts, no softball, ..... etc. Just the way it is, I guess.

Every year on the Wednesday before Memorial Day our town holds a big parade (we have oh, about 12 fire trucks, it's madness....) with marching bands and so on.

My son's baseball team is sponsored by the town's youth council so all of the teams were asked to be a part of the parade. We live in a very old, historical town and so Memorial Day events are pretty much attended by the whole town. (good time for a crime spree, no?)

So I was nominated (by Mr. C) to walk with Dan, because Vioxx being off the market and all, it's just not a good idea for the Mr. to spend two hours walking down the middle of the road. I kid you not, it took forever to do this parade because we were near the end and we waited at various points on the route while every band and chorus did a song or two at the review stand. Halfway through I reeeeeeeeeeeally wanted a nice cold beer.

Before the parade I was standing with Son's coach who looks remarkably like Billy Joel (now). He's a nice guy and when I looked at the vintage fire truck, we got to wondering how old it is, and so being a fireman himself (it's all volunteer around here) he went to find out.

It turns out that this is a 1940 Chevy, and Jack (my neighbor's stepfather) drove it to the firehouse from the dealer after the sum of $3,500 was paid. Hard to imagine, it was built 65 years ago.

We had a nice ceremony down at our town's memorial park. The part that always gets to me is when Taps is played and the Gold Star Mothers lay a wreath at the monuments. (If you don't know, a GSM is someone whose son was killed in action. These ladies dress in white and are driven along the parade route in a nice convertible and I always make my kids pay attention when they go by and I try to explain to them that their son went away to fight a war and never came home and so we should show proper respect for them.)

The color guard for the ceremony was two WWII vets, two Vietnam vets, and a veteran of the Korean war. I took my son's picture with them and they were quite cool - one guy at the end let Dan hold his rifle for the photo. Then he said to me "Pray that he never really needs to carry a gun" and this big ol' lump in my throat got even bigger. The Uncle Sam Chorus doing God Bless America pretty much finished me off.

So whatever you do this weekend, please remember the soldiers who fought for us in wars past and those who are in our armed forces all around the world right now. Whether it's the heroes of the past or the present, we owe them and their loved ones a debt of gratitude.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005


My son and daughter came home all torqued up about something today, and it amuses me.

Apparently there was a New Art Teacher today. "Nat" apparently does not have much experience with the elementary school set. She gave them the assignment to draw... a shoe.

:::frown, tilting head to side:::: A shoe, kids? Yes.

Now, I'm sure you could tell a college class "Draw your shoe" and they would all be inspired to go off in their own directions to produce creative, detailed pieces, some of which actuallyCOULD be called "art", perhaps even by Mr. C who really only likes the scenery-type pieces.

But listen, Nat. We are talking about age ten and under here. They need to be a little bit more grounded, and not the way that a shoe is, either.

My daughter pulled forth from her backpack a sadly wrinkled piece of paper. In the lower left corner is a blob of black chalk that vaguely resembles the shoes she wears with her school uniform. There was no detail, because those pieces of chalk are pretty clunky. So, not only did Nat give a really R-A-N-D-O-M assignment, she really didn't give them the right tools.

Hmm, kind of sounds like my office.... nevermind.

I looked at the picture, and looked at my daughter. She looked disgusted with the work. Even though I was just this week accused of being able to put on an Emmy-worthy act (by ex- Friend recently mentioned...) I knew that no amount of talent would make her believe that I thought this was an awesome piece.

So I took a different approach. I reminded her that sometimes things don't come out the way we want them to. It doesn't necessarily mean that we should give up art. (Though perhaps Nat needs a new career. I'll wait to see what next week brings.) I told her that if I was her teacher, I would want her to think about what she could have done differently in the picture and maybe what type of tools would have been better - like clay or at least a pencil or fine point marker. And that sometimes you have to re-do or redesign something in order for it to come out to be something you like.

I don't want her to inherit a particular trait of mine that I wish I didn't have. If I try something and don't do well at it pretty much right away, I dump it for something else. I don't like to fail at things and I don't tend to dig in and sweat a little in the attempt to master something I find difficult.

Art can be fun and too many people think "I have no artistic talent" when really they could if they found the right media to play with. Perhaps I should find something I'd like to do, but I'm not really very good at, and take a few lessons. Any suggestions?

I guess that's the question for today - is there anything you'd like to learn to do, either as a hobby or a profession, that you're currently not really very good at?

I'll ponder that and get back to you. Or perhaps it will be my little secret. Fear of failure, you know.

At any rate - she threw out the picture. It was a shoe, for crying out loud.

Monday, May 23, 2005


Sit back. Close your eyes. No, wait, open them so you can read.

Name 5 fun things you would like to do in the next year. Don't overthink it. Just rattle off a few ideas.

Here's mine (since I have not really been answering my own questions... the party was lovely and I wish you all could have been there)

1. Ride a parasail at Lake George

2. Sit right up front for the filming of a cooking show (Carmine or Emerill)

3. Sing onstage during a concert by a major recording artist. (Backup, I'm not talking duet or anything...)

4. Visit the Oval Office (...and kneel under the desk. Hah! with no one in the chair of course. I just want to know, Monica, what were you THINKING?)

5. take my kids to a MLB game


I got off the highway today and thought something "BIG" was going down. There's a four lane bridge I use to get over the river to my neighborhood. The roadside just before the bridge was dotted heavily with flashing red lights. Since the site typically has several tractor trailers doing annoying "back up and turn" maneuvers during rush hour, and has been the site of more than one major arson incident, it was safe to bet something significant was going on.


They were checking inspection stickers.

There were FIVE state trooper cars and two from the local cities on either side of the bridge. OK, so about a dozen cops, checking stickers at 2:30 in the afternoon. You must be kidding me.

I felt like saying "Is there anybody watching the rest of the capital district right now?" but I thought a smartass remark like that would in all likelihood not end well for me.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Yes, another question

When you have a party, do you clean up that evening or the next day?



Friday, May 20, 2005

Phone message

Hey - I totally forgot to give y'all a phone message. My bad.

You have been invited to speak at a graduation ceremony tomorrow.

What is your topic? (humor, world events, advice you'd give....)

Thursday, May 19, 2005

To my lurkers and new visitors

I love all of these answers to my questions of the day. Now I am perhaps talking to myself, which is odd, but I am so happy to see new faces in my blog. Where are you all coming from? I am so happy to see you. Right now I happen to be drinking my second rather large glass of wine so please forgive me if I am incoherent and corny. Frankly, I don't give a damn. (ha!) When I started telling people my blog name, I had misgivings. I was all "oh no, what if they think it's stupid?" but now my attitude is "If you don't like my blog, I don't care. Go click somewhere else. There's plenty of Internet." But apparently a few people do like to stop by and see what I have to say, and I'm happy about that.

Incidentally the glasses have dragonflies and butterflies hand painted on them which I love. My "baby" sister, who is 30-something and totally fucking awesome, gave them to me. Seriously if you don't know her, she is amazing and you are missing out.

I severed a friendship yesterday. End, finito, kaput. It was a decision I had to make, and I have been avoiding taking action. My sister, who is a good and true advisor to me, wanted me to be honest with this person. I was afraid to do it. I don't like confrontation and conflict. Hello! Understatement. But another friend helped me see that this person was hurting me, more than being a friend to me, again and again, and that life is too short to allow people to treat me this way. So now it is done. I am sad, but I am going to move forward. The dread is gone. Mr. Carly and the others I've mentioned are in my corner so it will be OK.

Seeing so many new names commenting in my blog is touching my sappy little old heart more than you guys know. Yes, I'm a dork. So what? When I started blogging, which is completely the fault of Shamus and Erik, I have spent so much time on this that I could absolutely kill you guys, for a while I thought "what if I blog and no one will read this?" But that crazy little Sitemeter tells me you are coming here, more and more. I'm not sure why... but thank you.

And Virgil, one smartass remark and I will totally kill you on Monday. Just one word, and you're dead. Dead I tell you!!!

What's canoe with you?

I was watering my garden and trying to get my mind off of something and I turned my head because a moving red object caught my eye.

It was a canoe, being carried up the middle of my street by two boys who were about 13. Except they didn't know how to carry it - I tried to tell them (while laughing hysterically right in their faces) that 'you should flip it up and over, and carry it on your shoulders.' "We have too much stuff in it" was the reply. I asked them where they lived and it was two blocks away (uphill, seriously.) It was funny because it was such a random thing, and they had so far to go, and they would make it about 10 or 20 feet, put it down, and try to pick it up a different way. If the Mr. was home I could have thrown it in the Explorer. But oh well.

My daughter came out on the porch, looked at them, saw them drop it, and snorted. "Losers."

It was so CLEARLY something Shamus and Virgil would do when they were that age.

Thursday's Question

You found a time machine... you can go back to two people. Who, and why?

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Goodbye Riddler

Actor Frank Gorshin, the impressionist with 100 faces best known for his Emmy-nominated role as the Riddler on the old "Batman" television series, has died. He was 72.

( story on CNN )

If you missed my admitedly very lame story about getting lost in his house, well, the nuts and bolts are that when I bumped into him he was very nice about it. Rest in peace, Mr. Gorshin.

Old memories, dusted off

Today something reminded me of a place that I used to retreat to when I was in college. It was a little courtyard tucked away in the brownstones on the campus, with a small but beautiful garden that included a fountain. I would walk across campus, through a wrought iron gate, and down a long corridor with brick walls on either side, and then I'd be there. I would spend time sitting on the park bench, just listening to the sound of the water falling, looking at the flowers and trees around me. It reminded me of "The Secret Garden" which was a book I loved as a child.

Highschool was hard, because of all my nerd-ocity (I was salutatorian of my senior class). There were times in college when I still felt like an odd duck. Not so much so as in high school, but it was discouraging at times to be surrounded by young women who had far more material means than I could EVER imagine myself having. It was a private scholarship full of very rich girls, and smart little old me who was riding a bunch of scholarship money as far as I could go. My clothes didn't even remotely measure up, because I never had a dollar to my name. Thank god for 50 cent bagels at Bruegger's. I lived on those.

While some girls were picking out features for the new car Daddy would be buying them for graduation, I was wondering where I'd work. When would I ever get a car ? (and I knew it wouldn't be new). But I knew that the scholarships were my only shot at someday having at least a modest amount of moolah of my own so I stuck it out, and from time to time, I went to the garden to feel the peace there.

I had one job interview before graduation. It was in Boston. I stood on the pier and looked out into the ocean and tried to figure out whether this place was my destiny, my future, whatever. It didn't feel right. I felt very much alone. The salary was low (18K) and I knew I'd have very little money for rent, furniture, forget a car. So I didn't know if I'd be able to go home often, and I knew home wouldn't come to me. My parents don't "DO" vacations or even weekends away. In the end I did get offered the job, but I told them the truth - I was not ready to relocate, but thank you very much.

I wondered today what my life would be like now if I had taken that shot. I decided that sooner or later life always works out for the best, and I think I got lucky with the way things are now. I have a wonderful family and some awesome friends.

I took this photo years ago... this is my secret garden.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

My answer, and a new question

Last night I was I thinking I'd like to grab either sister or my best friend and go back to Vegas, because the CMA's are on tonight. (They're live from Mandalay Bay which I walked to on my last day there, and oh my god, did my feet HURT by then.... ) Of course, if my sister and I went, we'd meet a bunch of cool people but then get thrown out for laughing at Mr. Renee Zellweger. Troll.

New question:

You are any character you want to be, in your favorite movie.

Who are you and why?

Monday, May 16, 2005

A topic....

If you could get up tomorrow morning, hop on a plane, in a boat, a car, or on a dogsled (ha!) where would you go - and who would you want to bring along?

Busy, Busy

'xcuse me while I get ready for a party I should have been working on for months, ok?

Talk amongst yourselves.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Gutter ball Mom


It started out simply enough. The school sent home a flyer about the Mother-Son bowling party and I filled in our names and sent it back with $$.

Today, we set out in the car. I had seen Joanne (the mom in charge) last week, and said "Where is that again?" and she mentioned the name of the bowling alley. "That's over in Yorthtron, right?" "Yes, 5th ave". No problem.

We set out with about 10 minutes to get there, which was plenty of time. My little guy was holding my hand and he was so excited that he was practically skipping (in a cool, almost 8 year old and I'm no Momma's boy sort of way) when we crossed the street to go into the bowling alley.

The *empty* bowling alley.

Very empty. Houston, we have a problem.

I asked the bored teenager at the counter, "is there a school party here today?" and got a shrug. "No, maybe at Hilltop." Hilltop would be 15 mintues away. #$%^&*#$. I had no one to call. Most of the other Moms I know at school are friends of my daughter's parents, so they would not be as likely to attend.

Got to Hilltop. Realized I was in the once again starring in the "action feature" The Only Car In The Parking Lot. At this point my son sighed and quietly said "We'll never find it now." You can not imagine what a little knife to the heart it was. Yay, mother of the year, right here.

At this point I got pissed, and determined to find this steeenking bowling alley even though I had no idea where I was headed. I brainstormed, and had an idea, but it was a long shot. I called Mr. Carly, who I knew had this guy Pete's number in his cell phone. Pete's wife was likely to be at this thing. About ten minutes later I got the info I needed. It was 10 minutes away from the first bowling alley I had gone to, but in the opposite direction from Hilltop. A few blocks more down 5th ave than I had gone the first time, and I would have been there. Dammit!

We got there almost an hour late. Frankly, the thought of one less hour wearing those shoes (ewww) was fine with me. My consolation prize was Joanne saying to me "Well there you are, I wondered where you were, it's not like you to flake out and forget something like this." That's a positive statement, right? I think it is. I'm going to run with it. As a bonus, we were that much closer to the lukewarm pizza.* My son forgave me as soon as he saw his friends, but this just is NOT a scrapbooky sort of memory.

*Oh yeah, I bowled sucky too. By the 7th frame I had a whopping 50 and they mercifully cut the game short for the aforementioned pizza. Esssplain to me why people love this game? (Marco?)

Friday, May 13, 2005

Birthday Boy (?)

Happy Birthday Dennis Rodman!!


1. This picture was copied from the brilliant website Go Fug Yourself. They are the. funniest. girls. ever. Go visit them (the link is always in the list on the lower right of this page)

2. I am going to wear this outfit when *I* turn 44. Oh yes I am.

Thursday, May 12, 2005


...tomorrow being Friday the 13th, I shall be hiding under my bed all day. Have a good weekend, you guys.

Happiness in a mailbox

I got my 200 page catalog from Fire Mountain Gems today. Awesome. Lots of dragonflies - one of my favorite things. I've been meaning to make some more jewelry and this will motivate me.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

In the middle of the night

The mood tonight is pensive.

It may have something to do with lack of sleep (up till 1, awakened at four by volunteer fire sirens, check on the boy who hates the wail of those sirens in the middle of the night, back to bed but up again at 6). As a rule, I don't do well without enough sleep. I'm not one of those people who can get four hours per night.

In the middle of the night
I go walking in my sleep
From the mountains of faith
To the river so deep
I must be lookin' for something
Something sacred I lost
But the river is wide
And it's too hard to cross
Even though I know the river is wide
I walk down every evening and stand on the shore
I try to cross to the opposite side
So I can finally find what I've been looking for

It may have to do something to do with that person who appeared briefly for dinner and then left, for yet another meeting. The kids were absolutely off the wall this afternoon and it sure would be nice right about now to have a great big bathtub, a la Calgon. Candles all around would be nice. Do people really get to do that, or is it an advertising scheme to get us to buy bottles of bubble bath and pretty candles that we will never actually have the time or energy to use?

In the middle of the night
I go walking in my sleep
Through the valley of fear
To a river so deep
I been searching for something
Taken out of my soul
Something I'd never lose
Something somebody stole
I don't know why I go walking at night
But now I'm tired and I don't want to walk anymore
I hope it doesn't take the rest of my life
Until I find what it is I've been looking for

Today I caught the little guy jumping off his bed, onto a heap of blankets & quilts on the floor. It reminded me of the time when I was his age that my brother and I jumped off my dresser onto my bed, over and over. My parents were out for a little while. Whether they were out in the yard or Out Somewhere, I'm not sure. But when they came in, they found the breakers tripped, and my nightstand lamp was identified as the culprit. To be precise, the plug had broken off in the outlet (from the bed smashing against it each time we jumped onto the bed. We "damn near burned the house down" according to my mother. So, my son probably has me to blame for the jumping gene. He is seven and a half, and fearless. I did the "Auntie S (our family's very own R.N.) really doesn't like extra trips to the hospital" speech (rendition number 4,812), but my heart wasn't in it. So, I guess this one is "I'm tired" too.

In the middle of the night
I go walking in my sleep
Through the jungle of doubt
To a river so deep
I know I'm searching for something
Something so undefined
That it can only be seen
By the eyes of the blind
In the middle of the night

It's awfully quiet around here tonight. Considering I have only 9 days until a Big Party at my house, I should be more motivated. There should be Things happening.

I'm not sure about a life after this
God knows I've never been a spiritual man
Baptized by the fire, I wade into the river
That runs to the promised land
In the middle of the night
I go walking in my sleep
Through the desert of truth
To the river so deep
We all end in the ocean
We all start in the streams
We're all carried along
By the river of dreams
In the middle of the night*

Did you ever wake up, and just listen to the sounds of the night drifting in through an open window, and feel like absolutely no one else is awake? It's just not morning yet, you can't get up and start your day. I hate that feeling - somehow you're frozen in this moment alone, and you can't fall back to sleep to escape it. That's how I feel right now. Tired and lonely. Is it Thursday yet?


*Billy Joel , of course. I think he probably wrote this knowing that it wasn't working out with Christie, because the song before it is about not being with your children as much as you want to be. But truly his best song ever, is "And so it goes." Go, click links, read the lyrics.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

It's far too nice out today

I have a reserved parking space for the month of May. I won it by participating in the monthly 50-50 raffle at work. So, knowing that I can zip right in and out whenever I want, I have been going out to lunch frequently. I got one of the spaces on the upper parking deck, and I work in an office park with plenty of wooded areas and so I see all sorts of really nice "spring" scenery when I go out to lunch.

And so, I now interrupt this blog (more or less) to bring you "Carly high on Mother Nature, and not the kind that requires a bong, either"...

The weather is much too glorious for anyone to be doing any "real" work inside.

The sun is warm, and perfect for napping on someone's shoulder on a great big soft quilt in the middle of a park. The breeze is blowing the clouds around and it's not too hot, and not too cold, Goldilocks.

Wear some jeans and your favorite old t-shirt from the best concert you ever saw. No formal business suits and impractical shoes. Go for the sneakers - but then kick them off and stretch out with your barefeet in the grass. Look at the flowers. Count the birds.

Talk about little things, or big things, or nothing at all. It's OK. Just soak up as much springtime as you can. Drink wine (don't get caught....) and eat cheese and crackers. Don't litter. Watches, cellphones, and pagers are forbidden, .... why, they are evil, I say!!

Call your boss and say that something has come up and and you won't make it back to the office today.

Can you tell I have completely come down with Spring Fever?

Monday, May 09, 2005

NOW I remember...

Of course...

Every few days for the past month I get offers in the mail to buy something like these items. One is a set of statues. One is a "collector's plate"... whatever... They're priced at well over $100 apiece. He must be spinning in his coffin(s).

It is really grating on my nerves and I am Catholic!! I think I am receiving it because I was a fool and bought this for Mr. Carly to celebrate his new job.

Are you all getting all of this junk mail??

I had *something* I was going to blog

Now, ....what the heck was it? Anyone?


My ring is repaired and ready to be picked up... guess that means I have to start behaving, huh? (What?!! I'm kidding.)

I have discovered that the cable tv in the bedroom, which is NOT where my beloved DVR resides, provides me with free porn. I'm researching this only for the purpose of auditing my household finances, of course. As in, if my kids/babysitters watch something they shouldn't, will I know? The answer is a big fat no.

Well, whatever I was going to blog - and it was funny - is gone. I am currently stressing over the following: move, add on, or stay put?

The most simple solution is obviously, stay put. However that would require me to throw away half of everything we own. This house is bursting at the seams, and one of these days we'll carry in just ONE more piece of junk mail, or a magazine, and the whole house is going to explode in a shower of clutter. I have too many hobbies, my kids have extremely small bedrooms and a bunch of toys, Mr. C has too many files and folders and so on.

I've done the dumpster thing. It's very liberating to throw away real junk, "slightly" broken stuff, and things you KNOW that no one will ever buy at a garage sale. We give away useful stuff, of course, because for example I feel lucky when I can buy a new couch, and so I offer mine up to the Karma Gods.

The central issue preventing me from remaining "as is" would be the following: my husband's parents really need to not be living in their own house anymore as they are both approximately 80.

So - do we add on? I don't want to stick them in the back of the house. I want them to feel more like we have a duplex, and they have a decent front door of their own and a cute little house. Little, being the key word. That way Mr. Carly can mow one lawn, plow one driveway when it snows, etc. We can deal with roof and furnace and other nonsense.

The worst combination appears to be the route we might have to take. Yes- move AND add on. Oh, the horror. Boxing up everything I own, dragging it somewhere else, UN-BOXING, and all the while trying to make decisions on a construction project, and help my in-laws move their posessions. Eeek. THREE house closings, by the time we finish. Sell ours, sell theirs, buy something new. Wait - is it FOUR closings if you put on an addition on via home equity loan? Or perhaps we would do that from the sale of their house... oh, it gives me a headache.

Anyone have a good lottery ticket? I almost bet on that damn horse that went off at 50-1 too. Almost, but didn't. Grrrr.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

In My Daughter's Eyes

In my daughter's eyes I am a hero

I am strong and wise and I know no fear

But the truth is plain to see

She was sent to rescue me

I see who I wanna be

In my daughter's eyes

In my daughter's eyes everyone is equal

Darkness turns to light and the world is at peace

This miracle God gave to me gives me strength when I am weak

I find reason to believe

In my daughter's eyes

(James Slater)

Saturday, May 07, 2005

No cheesecake for you

I just realized... I used to be the birthday cake girl for the department when Johnny, Shamus and I were all on the same team and I think we missed Johnny V's birthday.

Happy Birthday Johnny - sorry, I don't have any spare cheesecake for ya, I'm not making one this weekend. It looks like you have your hands full with the meatloaf anyway. (Freak.)

Friday, May 06, 2005

Hallmark Blues

Picking out a Mother's Day card... sounds easy, right? Well, for me it gets very discouraging when I read card after card, about being the most encouraging, supportive, loving Mother and Happy Memories and each time think "well.... not so much."

That may make me sound like a total bitch. :::shrug:::: It's hard to feel warm fuzzies for someone who is not warm and fuzzy. Such is life. It's not like I was abused, or anything like that. My mother is just not an affectionate person. That sounds fairly benign until you experience it. I couldn't for any amount of money recall a time when she has ever said she loves me.

I believe she does, despite various stumbling points. When I joined the track team to try to shed my nerdy - salutatorian-dorky vibe, she bet my father that I wouldn't finish the season. Um, I don't think I was supposed to know about that, huh? Lack of information is often a problem - she once visited me (and my 3 day old son) on her way to the doctors -- she was going because she thought she had chicken pox -- she never mentioned that DURING the visit to my house and she still can not understand why I freaked out when she phoned me with the good news that "Well, I don't have chicken pox".

I try to take her as she is. She's not a hugger. She's not a mushy, heart-on-her-sleeve person. (So how did I end up that way? I *DO* tell the people that are special to me that I love them. It's important to me to do that.) The things that she does are not truly malicious. They're usually unintentional instances of bad judgement. I believe that.

And yet I can't help wishing she were a little more like those cards. I would love to have a Mom that I could go out with for a day of shopping and lunch. It'll never happen. She hates the mall, she hates eating out. She would rather sit in her garden, which is gorgeous, but she doesn't really want very much company, thank you very much. My mom is not a "drop by anytime" sort of Mom. Maybe that's why I am always thrilled to have people come over - one of my favorite things to do is have friends sit at my kitchen counter and have a drink and some snacks while I make something for dinner for us all.

So in the end, Mr. Carly usually comes through for me, finding a card that is not too mushy and yet not so sterile that I feel guilty (why, why do *I* feel guilty about this??) I have a firm vow that he has witnesssed, that I will never be like this to my kids. When I leave for work, I hug them, no matter how late I am. When they come home I am usually here and I hug them. They have a problem? I drop everything. Want 3 friends over? Invite 6. I want to be that safety net, that support and encouragement, backing them 100%.

I guess that's really all any of us can do, is take the things we wish we could change, and try to make them better for the people we love.

Frasier's back

Every year there is a crane on the pond near my house. This sucker is huge...last year he stood in my yard and was so ginormous that when I noticed him I thought is was something my neighbor rigged up to play a trick on us.* Then I opened the window to get a better look and his wings unfolded -- with a big WOOOOSH he started flapping them and lifted off like a damn cargo plane. I almost fainted. He looks something like this. So, I need to start carrying my camera around, because I could have gotten a great shot of him this morning.

Plus, today I saw a limo parked in our office park. Along the side was the name of a skydiving business. On top was a dummy designed to look like a skydiver whose parachute did not open (... and so he crash landed on top of the limo and was lying there motionless). It was funny in a strange sort of way and made me think of Johnny.

*My neighbor is a smartass. One year Mr. Carly hadn't started mowing the lawn yet for the season and Bob had mowed his a couple of times because he was newly retired. He came over and mowed the letters MOW ME into our lawn, five feet high. It was awesome especially from the upstairs windows. We got him back by getting a lifesized Santa from one of those catalogs like Harriet Carter that are all full of random stuff. We stuffed it with newspapers and tied it to his lampost on the 4th of July. It was posed so that it looked like Santa was waving at everyone driving by. So, we do stupid little stuff like that to each other every now and then. it's just about time for a new prank.

I humbly beg the masters of the genre' to give me some better ideas.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Another gift I don't want for Mother's Day

And I quote:
"Pantai Luar - Island of Dreams at Kimberley's

Visit our exquisite Oriental Bathing Suite and slip away to Eastern Asia, featuring the only Oriental bath in North America. This heated wet table is an electric lift that is anatomically designed especially for this massage and body treatment. This wonderful alternative to traditional massage is performed using two heated dumplings made up of the world's highest quality oils, fresh herbs, coconut and limes that give out a warm and exotic fragrance. Through various massage techniques these heated dumplings are passed quickly over the body. Then as they cool a slower movement with more pressure is applied to the muscles releasing the herbs and essential oils onto the skin. Defective cells are deleted, existing cells are activated, and new cells are produced leaving your skin glowing and relaxed. One Hour ...$150.00"

OK... a heated wet electric table and I'm supposed to RELAX?? Water+electric = dead Carly

And, the whole dumpling thing is weird too.
Give this gift to someone you love by clicking here

Happy Cinco de Mayo

You may send me gifts, but not this, please. I'd really rather have a corona with lime or a nice margarita.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

He WILL have this nickname forever

I don't know whether to laugh or cry either, lady ....

Burrito Boy

(thanks Tay- you know I love this kind of story!)

Springtime, and the Blogging is easy

So, today I went for a walk around this place right up the road from my office park. I got a rather suspicious memo right before lunchtime, that read between the lines approximately like this: You Are About To Lose Your Job, We're Outsourcing Your Asses. This has been happening about once a year for the past few years. So rather than stew too much about it, I figured what the heck, "get away from it all & go for a nice walk in the park". (I blame what's his name and his post about running barefoot in the park. )

I made a pretty respectable attempt at convincing myself that things were probably going to be fine and once I calmed down just a little bit I started to enjoy the walk. Not bad, trees and such. Sunshine... for most of the walk. Then of course because I was out trying to ENJOY the sunshine, it got cloudy and I was cold. It even started to sprinkle for a minute, dammit. So I got in me effin' car and went back to work.


I like to people-watch wherever I am. As it so happened I saw a couple along the way that inspired me to write this entry. Not really sure why, I guess it's the whole "spring is finally here and everything's blooming and everyone is in love" thing. I'm so glad winter is over.

They were sitting on a bench up ahead of me on the path that I was using. A bit younger than I am now, and from their business attire it seemed as though they too were on their lunch break. Like me, outside enjoying a warm sunny day, sitting and talking.

I noticed him take her hand in his, and she looked startled for a second. She relaxed after a moment though, and she shifted slightly to sit a little bit closer to him. I almost wanted to high five him and say "You're SO in, buddy! She likes you too!" but that would have been SO tacky. There was something about the way he was holding her hand and gently stroking her fingers that made me get all chick-movie sentimental and think "awwww" in various permutations. (Shop Dungarees will puke if he reads this...) He was looking at her, and saying something about a pretty face, and she was blushing, and smiling. Looking pretty damn happy about the whole situation, to me. Bitch. No, I'm just kidding. Why is it women get jealous of other women so easily?

( I saw a lot before I got completely past them, because I was wearing my Super Dorky Dark sunglasses so the couple couldn't see me staring at them and being so nosy, and besides they were pretty much uninterested in anyone around them. Which would include moi.)

I remembered the excitement of a new attraction. How you look forward to seeing that person, and spend the hours in between dates thinking through everything they said and did the last time you saw them. The giddy, half-drunk feeling of euphoria you carry the rest of the day after you spend time with them.

They looked pretty happy to be sitting there together, and it sure beat anything I had planned for my exciting work afternoon(take the project plan from hell that was dumped on me, and try to manipulate it into something that makes sense). But it was nice to know someone was having a great lunch.

Lucky girl.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005


Explain to me:

morning commute - sunny
midmorning peek out the window - sunny
lunch*- raining
midafternoon drive home from work - sunny
now (late afternoon) - sunny

*the only time I could have been sitting outdoors and enjoying the sunshine-- not that I didn't enjoy lunch, mind you... I did... but some sunshine would have been nice.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Hungry Girl

No, not me...

I'm going to spam myself for a second here but some of my friends will like this:

Hungry Girl

try the whack-A-snack game... I got 7600 points.... so it is easy!

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Fathers, Daughters, and Dancing

I run a little Father-Daughter dance every year for 250 - 300 people... the girls of our school, and their dads.

Here are things I learned this year:

1. Some but not necessarily all Southern people think these things are icky. Some but not necessarily all Northern people, like moi, think they are cute little things where Daddy takes his girl to a dance where the following things happen:

  • She dances with her friends and ignores him most of the night.
  • He hangs around with other bored Dads wishing the committee hadn't moved this event from the Ukranian-American club, because they had a bar there and at least one game would be on.
  • The last song is uber-syrupy "Butterfly Kisses" and every girl dances with her daddy and he feels sad because she is growing up so fast. Carly meanwhile tells the DJ "Man, I hate this song" and he frowns at her.

2. If I say "I don't think we need the extra sub platter because our numbers are down from last year" the person in charge of subs will get it anyway because I was not forceful enough, AND she will go to a different place and not even get that last platter for free like we did last year. She will also neglect to tell them to "hold the onions" causing 110 little girls to say "ewww" over the course of the evening.

3. Dads will come running when they smell fresh coffee, because for many of them this event is a snoozer, but they come anyway because they don't want their daughter throwing a tantrum if she misses the goodie bag. The goodie bags, though "awesome", will put you over budget when combined with that extra sub platter, because we didn't sell enough tickets to pay for all of this stuff.

4. You can set the deadline for ordering tickets to be April 15, so that you can budget more effectively. Go ahead. You will still receive daily phone calls up to the day before the dance asking "is it too late to get a ticket?" Since you don't like making little girls cry, you will say "No, it's Never Tooooo Late" with a forced smile.

4. It is better to move the five foot high stacks of chairs that were jammed against two of the marked EXIT doors, than to go rip the custodians a new asshole and explain fire code violations to them. They won't dare tell you "we really didn't want to have to clean the bathrooms in that hallway so we blocked the doors".

5. Having your high school best friend do the photos is good because she won't give you a hard time when your husband is the only one who doesn't have his form filled out.

6. Not having your wedding ring on (see previous entry, I knocked a stone out of it) is bad. One of the divorced daddies from out of town will ask for your email address "so I can mail pictures of our kids to you" since the girls are pals. The DJ will also pat your ass after making a joke to you and make it seem like an accident, causing the need to look around to make sure this was not seen by Mr. Carly or any of his pals. Because, well, riots at a dance are bad especially when some damn custodian jammed the doors closed.