Tuesday, January 31, 2006

A little meme - I've seen this one around, most recently at Julia's:

Four jobs I've had:
1. Film & television script researcher
2. Satellite marketing whiz
3. EMT
4. Technical editor

Four movies I can watch over and over:
1. "True Romance"
2. "To Kill A Mockingbird"
3. "Raising Arizona"
4. "A Fish Called Wanda"

Four places I've lived:
1. Boulder, Colorado
2. Winter Park, Florida
3. Salt Lake City, Utah
4. Los Angeles, California

Four TV shows I love:
1. Alias
2. Brainiac: Science Abuse
3. Survivorman
4. Grey's Anatomy

Ten highly regarded and recommended TV shows that I've never watched:
1. Arrested Development
2. Deadwood
3. Everybody Loves Raymond
4. George Lopez
5. My Name Is Earl
6. King of Queens
7. Medium
8. The Shield
9. Boston Legal
10. The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, The Biggest Loser, Dancing with the Stars, American Idol, etc.
(okay, I ran out of juice at the end there - but just wanted to point out that I don't watch those shows)

Four places I've vacationed:
1. Hawaii
2. Hong Kong
3. Amsterdam
4. Mexico

Four of my favorite dishes:
1. Roasted chicken
2. butternut squash soup
3. grilled tri tip
4. green beans with almonds

Four sites I visit daily:
1. Yahoo
2. Gmail
3. Wells Fargo
4. Dictionary.com

Four places I would rather be right now:
1. Italy
2. France
3. Spain
4. at the dog park
Ha ha ha - the State of the Union Address Drinking Game, via Ali. I might actually play this tonight.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Saturday was my debut effort at snowboarding. I took a "First Timer" lesson w/ the kids, and I'm so glad that I did. It's a little bit less embarrassing to fall on your ass every 20 seconds when everyone around you is doing the same thing. In general, I enjoyed it and seemed to get the hang of it pretty well, but what the f*@! is up with getting back on your feet while facing downhill? Apparently I have negative ab muscles, because I just couldn't do it. I kept having to flip over onto my belly like some gigantic mermaid so that I could get to my knees and then right myself.

I persevered and made it through one complete lesson. I do want to try again, but will definitely be wearing knee pads next time, maybe even wrist guards. I know now why people train for ski season. Every muscle in my entire body aches. I came home from the mountain and immediately fell asleep on my living room floor. When I got up, I drew the hottest bath I could stand, and soaked for a half an hour, continually refilling the bathtub with hot water. I thought that might help with what I was sure would be agony the next day - WRONG! Yesterday was a long series of crawls from room to room, complete with whimpers. Just sitting down on the couch was murder on my belly. So, what do you do when you're in that much pain?

    Drink lots and lots of wine
    Try not to move from the couch (except to get another bottle of wine)
    Try to figure out which pain killer can be taken with wine
    Stay up too late because you don't want to move from the couch
    Get up early the next morning and go to the gym

Yeah, that last one makes me laugh, too, but that's what I did. It's my husband's influence. He said since I was already in pain, I might as well go work out, then I wouldn't notice being sore after my workout. He's a prince like that.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Oh Lordy. Breakfast this morning at Lucile's. Turns out that biscuits and grits are in fact the cure for the hangover caused by a combination of tequila and free-flowing Stella Artois. If the sun weren't quite so bright today, I'd be doing much better.

Snowboarding on the horizon for tomorrow. I'm taking lessons (hey, I've never done it before!), and dragging my teenage niece and nephew along so I don't feel quite so out of place. We've got a charming little resort about 30 minutes from here.

To tie these thoughts together, the site of my undoing last night (Conor O'Neill's) is having a "worst breakup contest" on February 15th. You get up on stage, tell your story, they vote, and the winner of the worst story wins.....a Stella snowboard! How cool is that? I will spend the next couple of weeks working on my story. If you have any suggestions, feel free to leave them in the comments....

Monday, January 23, 2006

One of the best things that happened after switching jobs was that I had a chance to visit with my very oldest friend, Lawrence. We met for drinks while I was in CA on business - not exactly enough time to catch up, but we try to get together every few years and just shoot the shit. I've known him since I was 17 years old. I send him a Christmas card and a birthday card every year. He represents an important time in my life, and he loves me to pieces. He's getting married this spring to a woman that he adoringly refers to as "my girl", and he can't wait to be a dad. He is one of the finest people I know. I hope that one day down the road, I can point to a number of other people and feel as close to them. There are a few who are already there, we just don't have years of history like I do with Lawrence. It makes me feel grounded in the world, I don't know how else to describe it.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

I was just sitting here, rereading my last post, and I said to my coworker, "Dude, that was the most boring post!" - I can't help it! It's freaking dumping snow, and so cold that I don't want to go anywhere. I've got my iPod plugged into my little desktop doc, and we're listening to the soundtrack from the final episode of "Six Feet Under".

I'm enjoying the new job, and not just because every day involves lunch out at a different restaurant. It's a new experience, coming in and having people say "gosh, we're so glad you're here, you totally rock!" (okay, they don't say that verbatim, but you get the idea) My last job really scarred me, I keep waiting for people to be mean and abusive and try to belittle me - but thank Buddha that isn't happening.
It's snowing once again today, and is supposed to continue through tonight. While it's making all of the local snowbirds happy, it presents a problem when you're supposed to drive 20 miles to the car dealership BEFORE work to drop off the car. Leaving my house at 7am would have normally allowed plenty of time for me to drive down to Thornton, pick up the loaner and drive back to work, and still get me into the office by 8am. Instead, it was close to 10am when I finally got in. The sort of good news is that I have my car instead of a loaner - I got all the way down there, and they didn't have the loaner that they promised they would give me, so I demanded that they move my car to the front of the service line and do the work while I waited. There may have also been smiles and batting of eyelashes involved - they did what I asked, finished the work in about 25 minutes, and sent me on my way with the promise of a free car wash if I came back again after the snow stops.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Miss Mockingbird is in fine form. This cracked me up.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Yes, there is a new look to the blog today. I saw a story in the news that most web site visitors make up their minds about whether or not they like a site in the blink of an eye, and that once that opinion is formed, they don't generally go back. I've been thinking for a while that the colors in my site were kind of gloomy - maybe that was just my mood for a while. On the other hand, I know of at least one wonderful blog that I rarely read because I don't like the type/font that he/she uses on the site (no, I won't tell you which one). I find that it actually kind of hurts somehow to try to read it. I don't want to fall victim to the same thing, so I'm trying something new. If I had lots more time and lots more talent, I would build something from scratch, but for now I'll settle for the oh-so-slightly-familiar look of this Blogger template. Feel free to tell me what you think.

Monday, January 16, 2006

It's snowing! Finally. Our mountain towns and resorts have had some good snowfall already this season, but down here in the foothills, it's been dry as a bone. There were a couple of inches on the ground this morning when I woke up, and it's started going much harder in the last hour or so. My dog is probably out playing in the snow as I write. My trees are loving this, too - we've been watering and all, but I've got pines and small evergreens that are just loving this weather.

The best part of this is that there will be even more good snow in the mountains this weekend. I'm taking the kids snowboarding on Sunday, we're all having lessons. I've never done it in my life, but I grew up skiing - I'm hopeful that will count for something.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

I'm so lame when it comes to music. I can never remember the names of who sings what, or what album it's from, or even what genre I like. I tend to listen to eclectic stations (KCRW Santa Monica is my favorite), and this is one reason that I'm so fond of Radio Paradise. I've been listening on my computer at work, and every once in a while I'll hear something I really like, and I scribble it down on my desk blotter. Later, I power up the Mac, since I'm not fortunate enough to be able to use it for work, and I'll go to iTunes and buy the song. Today's purchases:

Gold Digger - Kanye West w/ Jamie Foxx
Mambo Banjo - Alison Brown Quartet
Sweet Emotion - Leo Kottke and Mike Gordon

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

A wrap-up meme for 2005, courtesy of Julia:

Did you keep your New Years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I didn't make any last year, and don't intend to have any this year.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not in 2005, but three of my closest girlfriends became pregnant.

Did anyone close to you die?
Fortunately, no.

What countries did you visit?
None, unless you consider Pacific Junction, IA and Brainerd, MN to be other countries.

What would you like to have in 2006 that you lacked in 2005?
More free time at home.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Getting a new job and leaving a place that was making me miserable.

What was your biggest failure?
I dropped out of one of my classes at school, I just couldn't get it together and make time for the work.

What was the best thing that you bought?
My husband's wedding band.

Whose behavior merited celebration?
My niece and nephew, who moved to a new state and started new schools and made new friends - I am so impressed by them.

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
I'd rather not say.

Where did most of your money go?
Paying for a small but wonderful wedding.

What did you get really excited about?
My wedding.

What song will always remind you of 2005?
"Use Me" by Bill Withers

Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or Sadder?
Much happier.

Thinner or fatter?
Slightly thinner.

Richer or poorer?
A little bit richer, and not just in terms of $$$

What do you wish you'd done more of?
Hiking with hubby and the dog.

What do you wish you'd done less of?
Sitting inside, being one with the TiVo.

How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent Christmas with my family.

Did you fall in love in 2005?
Yes, all over again.

How many one-night stands?
For better or worse, I think that's all behind me.

What was your favorite TV program?
"CSI" (the orignal), much to my husband's chagrin.

Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
I don't hate anyone.

What was the best book you read?
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

What was your greatest musical discovery?
Radio Paradise (thanks, Ali)

What did you want and get?
A new job.

What did you want and not get?
A new bathroom.

What were your favorite films of this year?
"Brokeback Mountain"
"The Squid and the Whale"

What did you do on your birthday?
Went out for drinks with a bunch of friends in Denver.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2005?
My pants should never approach my waist.

What kept you sane?
My sister, my girlfriends and my dog.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Dr. McDreamy on "Grey's Anatomy" (Patrick Dempsey)

What political issue stirred you the most?
Supreme Court retirements and replacements.

Who did you miss?
My dad

Who was the best new person that you met?
Laurel, the girl who tints my eyelashes and waxes my eyebrows.

Tell us a valuable life lesson that you learned in 2005.
Pick your battles carefully and don't sweat the little stuff. It may be cliché, but it's the truth.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
But oh baby, baby, baby, baby
When you love me I can't get enough
I-I and I, wanna spread the news
That if it feels this good getting used
Oh, you just keep on using me
Until you use me up

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I received an email re: my previous post, asking why a nice girl like me has suddenly resorted to cursing on her blog. Huh. Well. I don't know what to say, other than it strikes me as odd that a complete stranger thinks that they know enough about me and my personality to suggest that I'm acting somehow out of character. I guess that's yet another thing that these Internets do for us.

It did make me think though. When I first started this blog, I WAS worried about people I knew reading it, or maybe I just posted carefully lest they did. After one BAAADDDD episode with a member of my family, I resolved to keep it light and stay away from the personal stuff. But the more I think about it, I wonder what the point of that is. Let's be honest, I am reaching out to people every time I post, so why not be who you are? I don't mean blogging as a substitute for face time with people, but some days it's all I can do to go to work and come home to make dinner. I am not burdened with an excess of free time. I see my girlfriends a couple of times a month. I see my family once a week. The rest of the time, I'm working or I'm resting from working or I'm trying to drag my ass off to exercise. So blogging and/or reading blogs is (for me) like meeting a friend for coffee, only I can take a few minutes out of my day instead of blowing off work for the morning.

There are a handful of blogs that I really look forward to reading. They are on the list at the right. I try to read most of them daily, but sometimes I only make it over to my true favorites. They have in turn directed me to other blogs that they enjoy, and I've found some great sites that way. That's what I like best. It's like having your friend introduce you to their friend, who becomes your friend, too. A whole new world.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Apparently it's National Delurking Week. Say hello, won't you?

Sorry to bounce back from a long absence with a rant, but what the fuck is up with customer service lately? They really shouldn't be able to call it that anymore, it should be renamed "Customer Patience Testing Center" or "Customer Proctology Exam" or something. A couple of examples:

1. The CD player in my little Subaru died. It ate a CD and will play said CD, but won't give it back. Now, I like the soundtrack from "Garden State", but after being able to listen to no other CDs in the car for the past 3 months, I'm pretty sick of it. You heard right - THREE MONTHS. It has been two months to the day since I contacted the dealer about repair, they said they had to order me a new one and would replace it free of charge (under warranty) - and they still don't have the fucking stereo. How hard can it be for a Subaru dealer to obtain a Subaru radio? I call them faithfully every week. First they lost record of my service inquiry, then they had the stereo but accidentally installed it in someone (more pushy than me, obviously) else's car, then they seem to have this endless delay in ordering a new one for me. Gah! I want to sell my car, but I can't do that until the damn stereo is fixed. It's only a two year old car! I fear that by the time they get around to doing this, it will no longer be under warranty. Maybe that is the Master Plan.

2. My pharmacy is unable to provide me with birth control pills. Despite the fact that I live in the most liberal part of these midwest United States, it seems that my local, family-owned pharmacy is in fact in league with the uber-right or some such shit. They're supposed to mail my pills to my home each month, and for some reason just stopped sending them. My idiot insurance company won't let them give me more than one month at a time, and since I skip the placebo week (long story), I need a new pack every three weeks. I am now a week and one day late on starting a new pack. I keep offering to come get them, and they claim that the pills are en route, or that my coming in will throw off their schedule (like it could be much worse) -- so unfortunately for my husband, it's either no sex or we're back to the days of french letters. Oh joy.