Tuesday, August 31, 2004

School Shopping Extravaganza!

No, I was not school shopping tonight. I'll do that closer to when my classes start back up again. What I did do was stop at a retail store before meeting some friends for food (and having to wish someone good luck with their cross-country move. I'll miss you lots Cindy!) The number of families with little kids running around the store reminded me of those back-to-school days of shopping with my mom. I love shopping for and buying school supplies. This is something I've discussed before (Writing Utensil Update). It is frightening how much I love paper, pens, pencils, binders, etc. This may be why my job at the office supply store put no money in my pockets. I digress.

There are about 8 mazillion (yes, I made up a word. This is from karaoke one night and I don't know how much a mazillion is, but I'm sure it's a lot) kids running around the office supplies aisle. I dodge a couple as I grab two notebooks (one for score keeping while playing cards and one to carry around in my purse for notes). I stop over in the toys area to pick up a couple of decks of cards to replace the Coca-Cola cards I bought in Vegas last March. Since I only have four items and since the store has been overrun by families purchasing carts full of paper, crayons, rulers, etc., I decide the express lane is a good idea.

This was my first mistake.

I am third in line to check out. The gentleman in front of me has three items, dog food and a couple of small things I didn't quite register. The woman in front of him has seven, yes SEVEN, children with her. In the check out aisle for ten or less items this woman decided to purchase $140 worth of school supplies. Notebooks don't cost $14 each. Obviously, this woman cannot count to ten. Maybe she should go back to school with her children.

I am not bothered about how much this woman is purchasing, I'm just explaining that she's in the check out lane for ten items or less. This might bother some people. Such as the woman who stood behind me.

This woman runs up behind me, ready to run a marathon, complete with the lycra biker shorts and black tank top. Her pseudo-brown hair hangs from her hair in snarls. In her right hand is a cigarette, previously lit, but obviously not finished. Her left hand holds a $5 bill. Knowing the line I'm standing in is closest to the cigarette racks, I'm sure she needed to buy a pack of cigarettes.

Biker chick stood behind me, rocking back and forth. As we stood there, her definition of personal space and mine collided. I guess the crappy merchandise in the end caps has the power to become the most fascinating images on the planet while waiting in line. She needed, couldn't live without, to put her chin over my shoulder to look at the lollipops on sale at this time. Waiting the two minutes it would take to move forward in line was too much to ask. She became my own personal "space invader". Her arm lunges out and grasps this bag of candy on top of the rack.

The woman with seven kids is now paying for her stuff. Here is what I heard:

"F*ck! I'm like the world's most impatient person. F*ck, my stomach hurts. Oh!!!! What's the cashier doing?"

Here is my next mistake, I responded. "It appears the cashier is providing change to the customer."

"F*ck! This is taking too long. Hurry up!"

Thankfully, the line moved forward and I was quickly away from the retail store, scared from this woman and scared for anyone who has to deal with her. I'm wondering how she's made it this far in life that she can't handle being in line for five minutes.


At 9:07 AM, CarpeDM said...

"It appears the cashier is providing change to the customer."

God, I love you. I got this flash of our whole Star Trek thing and could imagine this.

"Fascinating, captain. It appears that this human is suffering from an inability to recognize what people are doing. Let me explain this to her in a logical fashion."

Mmm, notebooks. I love back to school as well. If it weren't for all the damn kids.

At 3:20 PM, Matt said...

Yes, for some reason I am also bothered by the kids running around the aisles, thank God I don't have any......wait I do. Never mind.

As for the whole Star Trek thing: "Damn it Spock, can you not.....just for once.....harsh my buzz" I just needed to do it.

I love you Little Sister, take care.

Big Brother.

At 7:19 PM, The Lioness said...

"I love shopping for and buying school supplies. (...) It is frightening how much I love paper, pens, pencils, binders, etc."

Me too! Me too! I thought I was a lonesome freak!

Monday, August 30, 2004

Since I'm trying to increase my randomness

After taking the test to see how random I was, I determined myself to expressing myself in a more random way. In the past, I've discussed with my former roommate about how things I say can sometimes sound random, it's just that there is an entire train of thought reaching up to this. Like last night. I had a conversation with Michael at karaoke about that signifies my seemingly random thoughts, that aren't random at all. Here is that conversation:

M: You like this song.
B: Yeah, Dean's great. (Wow, I'm quite the conversationalist! Yeah, right. Dean was rapping Ice, Ice Baby. I don't like rap, but Dean is an amazing person and fun to listen to.)
There is a pause in the conversation.
B: Bryan did a terrific job at Getting Jiggy Wit It. He made it his own song.

Michael stares at me blankly. Yes, we had been talking about rap, but not Bryan, or that specific song. And the comment I made was to justify people trying rap songs at karaoke.

I look at Michael and explain.
B: I just left out something. What I meant to say before that was, 'I have trouble enjoying rap. Dean is the only person I can listen to at karaoke because he adds his own words to the songs during the musical breaks and he can speed up the songs and still sound clear. I don't like to listen to anyone else. Except Bryan. [Insert what I actually said here.] He sang it like Frank Sinatra would and added class.'

No wonder Michael looked so confused. It seemed random, but I did not randomly make it to that thought.

In other words, I'm trying to either improve what I explain or try to be truly random. Like Dana. Dana is a random person. Or seemingly random. What scares us is when I can understand her train of thought and associations bringing her to the words she just said. (Oh, I like Paul Simon, who's that guy I don't like?)

What brought me to discussing my randomness (or lack thereof)? I was blog surfing again. I love this Next Blog link at the top. It's so much better than having advertisements for pens at the top of my blog. (Matt gave me new pens! Hurrah!)

I find many blogs I have no interest in reading. It's usually because I don't have the skills in certain foreign languages to read them. There are some that bother me grammatically. Here's my vant about the grammar.

The word 'peoples'. As in "Hey peoples!" This just irks me. If you're going to be seriously writing, be serious about what image you are portraying through your words. When someone is reading your works, they are getting a picture of who you are. Presenting yourself as an uneducated individual does not make others want to read your expressions.

Using the font/program (I don't know how people do this) that capitalizes every other letter. Such as, "wE wEnT tO tHe StOrE." Again, this shows no grasp on the English language. I can handle some grammar issues. Just not blatant disregard for the language.

My last vant about grammar. If you are going to bother with punctuation, bother to capitalize I. Examples are: "i went to the store. i stayed home. i went to work." All this does is show how lazy someone is. Pressing the shift key is not difficult people. Unless you only have one digit total on both hands, there is no excuse for this. Our language has capital letters and punctuation for a reason. It helps designate importance, breaks in trains of thought, context, etc. Grammar includes the tools we use to communicate. If I said to you, "sToRe went me," you may understand that I went to the store, but you're going to think less of me. Grammar makes it easy for others to understand you. Please use it!

Okay, back to my normal state of bliss. I'm not just trying to express my displeasure in the writing skills of the general public. I found a site today which I loved. It may be one of the best written sites I've had the pleasure of finding. This man is well-written, he is descriptive and still grasps the concept of expressing action. His posts are interesting, creating a picture in my mind. The technique does not hinder the story he is weaving. The site is The Cyberdeck Dialogue. If you are interested in good writing, check it out. I recommend it highly.

I guess I'm not that random, am I?

To be completely random:

An update to my undying desire to possess the next Dark Tower book by Stephen King. The dreams have started up since the release date (and my next day off of work - I can't believe I took a day of vacation to read a book) is only 23 days away.

I had a dream last night where I held the new book in my hands. It was the day it came out. The book was thick, as I wish it will be. It boasted over 900 pages. The epic adventure concluded with an epic itself. I check the back page to see the actual page content (not to read the last sentence). I notice it looks like an index. This seems odd for fiction. Puzzled, I ponder why an index would be in a fictional story. Thinking it may be the concordance for the stories (which the second concordance of the Dark Tower series, assembled by Robin Furth, covering the last three books, will also be released with the final book), I try to determine how many of the pages this index covers. This is where the dream becomes a nightmare. I see that the index covers over 680 pages! Ahhhh! The story itself only covers 219 pages. (Yes, the number 19. My desire to see the significance of this is growing.) I am so disturbed by the lack of story, I wake up.

I am officially a tower junkie.


At 9:02 AM, CarpeDM said...

I am so confused. I try to follow what you are saying but your use of logic to explain randomness makes my head hurt. Ow.

Okay, actually, I took my break early because I had a headache already.

You scare me with this whole tower thing. I don't get the 19 reference. Tell me what it means! Tell me! Okay, head hurts more because of furrowing of brow.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Ode to another week

Ah, the feeling of being home. I wrote a little about my week and it wasn't bad, but I'm glad to finally come to the weekend. Knowing I don't have to be back to work for another 62 hours is nice.

Our team is having fun and doing well, we're still trying to find the groove we had last quarter. Eke! I feel as if the bar was raised and we forgot how to jump over it.

The Olympics were cool for a week. I want my Conan back! I think Conan O'Brien is back on starting Monday. Let's sing hymnals now! I'm excited at least.

Thursday was a crazy day. Besides having to be at work an hour and a half early, I had three meetings. I lead two of them. The first involved the upper management staff appreciating the assistant managers (surprise, surprise - okay, Dana and I knew what was going on because we've been there long enough and we're observant). Still, it was cool. The teams put together posters for their leads. My team made a card. One of my bankers even drew a picture of Clint Eastwood for me. This is because of my Dark Tower obsession and watching a ton of old westerns lately.

After that meeting, I lead a team meeting. I had to come up with something cool to keep people involved for an hour. I found some training packet on this new regulation "Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act". You might hear of it being called Check 21. Just in case anyone relies on the time from when you write the check to when it clears, forget this practice RIGHT NOW! And don't blame your bank. This is a regulation being passed by the Federal Government to allow expedited funds clearing and help in detecting fraud quickly. It's the 21st century now (surprising from the name of the Act huh?) and technology has made it so your checks don't need to travel the Pony Express to clear. Have the money before you spend the funds. Okay, off that soapbox now.

I stayed late at work 3 nights this week. One was completely unplanned but when you're the closer, you get to wait for the last banker to get off their call. So I was late meeting Matt for cards. He's sweet. He bought me a movie! That made me feel special.

I just started thinking about the movie Matt got me. He bought me Kill Bill Volume 2. Maybe my mind is going to far. Thinking of me, he picked up a movie about a woman who goes on a rampage and starts killing all of her enemies. I don't think he's comparing. Hee hee.

I cried this week. One of the bankers from my team had to move out of state and quit suddenly. I didn't get to say good-bye at work. She signed the card my team made for the recognition event and then her final calls came in from being monitored for quality assurance. She did fantastic. This made me cry because she is so awesome and no longer at work with me. Imagine me with a big lower lip sticking out and tears in my eyes. That's what I feel like.

I got addicted to Zelda again. I've accomplished nothing at home. Oops. Also, this is the reason for lower blog activity lately. I am also enjoying the next blog feature. Blogs with weird cursors and music bother me, I've written this before. I found a couple of good ones tonight. One made me cry a little. This woman has been trying to have a baby but just miscarried. It's unfortunate. Here's her blog. I admire her for sharing her story. The other one that intrigued me tonight was this one. I think I just liked the title of her blog. And the information is a different perspective on life. I liked it.

Looking forward to karaoke tomorrow night. Time with Dana and Matt! I should call Karen and get her to join us. I miss hanging out with Karen. She's way cool.

My back hurts. My belt's too tight. I'm shaking my booty from left to right. Sorry Dana. I still think of that cheer Lisa used to drive you insane with at work. But my back does hurt. Don't know why I'm sharing that here. I'm just on a random chain of thought.

Went shopping online last night and today. I placed an order for scrapbooking stuff last night. Lots of fun stuff! I can't order the really cool stuff until next month, but there are some great new products coming in the mail now. The other thing I bought arrived in my email inbox tonight. I'm excited for a concert in September where I'll be laughing and screaming and singing along with Matt, Scott, and Dana to a wonderfully powerful singer, Melissa Etheridge. I went to one of her concerts when I was in high school and it was amazing. It was also the best seats I've ever had for a concert (besides a street show).

On the subject of Melissa Etheridge. She is an amazing performer. Her voice is so powerful and true. The fact that I enjoy her music does not make me gay. I wish people could just understand that accepting others for our differences is essential for life and humanity. I can understand if someone doesn't appreciate the music because it's not their desired genre of songs, but to not appreciate a musician or artist just because of their sexual preference is ignorant. Why deny yourself the joy of great art, music, or performances because of the star's choice in the bedroom? Who loses? All of this is spawned from a comment someone made to me when I mentioned purchasing a tribute album because Melissa Etheridge was a singer on the album. I was told, "Hanging out with gays is making you gay." What? I responded politely, "I enjoy the music because it's good. And it's narrow-minded individuals like yourself that make me want to avoid straight performers. Are you really that self-centered?" Okay, getting off soapbox again. Maybe I should put that away tonight. Then I can't hop back on.

So, our check with our bonuses is coming on Tuesday. I wish the company would cut a separate check for the bonus instead of adding it to our regular salary. I'm paying a ton of taxes on this check. Here's a clue, the deductions actually total more than more normal paycheck. Oh well, Uncle Sam is going to be giving me back a lot in February. Just in time to payoff Christmas. It's like a forces savings plan. Without the interest. Oh well, interest rates for deposit accounts suck. Here's what the Feds are thinking, "Let's fuel up the economy by making people buy lots of crap and putting themselves into debt. Then the national debt will decrease because Americans will just have it be personal debt." Maybe that's not what they're thinking, it's just that with the lower interest rates on borrowing money, people spend more and can't pay it off. And when credit interest rates are down, so are deposit interest rates. Fact of life.

That's enough randomness tonight. Later!


At 11:41 AM, CarpeDM said...

I like it when you're random. It's fun.

Yay! Melissa Etheridge tickets! This is so cool.

Yeah, well, I got called sir. I'm sure the individual who made that sweeping statement would probably think I'm gay as well, just because of the haircut. I hate sterotypes.

Yet another reason I love you (in a platonic way, of course (couldn't resist)), you are not afraid to say what's on your mind. Too many people would back down from that statement.

See you tonight! Call me!

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Surfing Blogs

Am I a horrible person? It seems to me that I might be lazy or that I just don't like a lot of distractions.

Blogger now has this link at the top of each page to go to the next blog. This is rather cool and I've found a couple of blogs worth reading. As I was clicking through tonight, I realized that I don't like it when I get to a blog with tons of extra stuff on it.

I'm talking about having music play or what really annoys me, having something follow the mouse around. I hate those date, time, et cetera things on the end of a mouse pointer. It makes me disregard the blog and move on.

I found a blog I enjoyed tonight. The refreshment of an ice cube, only made of words. I enjoyed his Eulogy. ish post. I have to read more and see if it will become a constant hit. He reminds me of me and also of Dana. And then he's completely different. That made sense, didn't it?

Random stuff:

I have a meeting tomorrow at 1:30. This may be a problem since I usually get out of bed at 1:50. I really should be going to bed now.

I gotta talk to Matt. I wonder if he wants to hang out tomorrow night. Reminder to self to call Matt. (Or if my big brother is reading, call me! Just not before 1 in the afternoon. I'd prefer you call me at work. That's where I'd call you from.)

I started a new book. I'm reading Bag of Bones by Stephen King. Haven't gotten too far yet. It's interesting and I guess it's tied to the Dark Tower series. 27 days left until the final book comes out. I'm thinking of creating a countdown calendar for my desk at work. This might be slightly obsessive.

Got to talk to Matt about Saturday afternoon. I asked Dana already and she's interested in going to an event in September. I think Matt will be too. That made no sense. I'm sure of it.

I'm starting to get caught up at work. I've spent the last couple of nights figuring out disputes with the quality monitors. I seem to enjoy the arguing with the authorities to help the bankers perform at higher levels. I don't know if I'll get anything back this month, but I'm trying. Our team is suffering and it's driving me crazy.

My pile of scrapbooking stuff seems to be growing. I need to get the Vegas album completed. Then I could probably organize a little better.

I found the cord for my N64! It was in a cooler. I used very interesting things to pack stuff when I moved. Why this cord was the only one not with all my electronics is beyond me. But I got to play Zelda again. Thank you to Adam for giving me the game!

I got extremely upset at my computer tonight. I had a post for Out of the Mouths of Morons completely written and tried to run spell check. Some goofy pop-up blocker showed up and erased my entire post. ARGH!

That's enough random information for tonight. My brain is fried.


At 7:45 AM, CarpeDM said...

I wrote a comment last night and then the computer froze up on me. Anyway, no, you're not a horrible person, I don't like blogs with a lot of distractions either. I have no problem with stuff off to the side, like links and guestbooks and stuff like that, it's the blogs that have the snow falling in the background or the dancing things at the bottom of the page that irritate me. I've tried to read them and they are in this odd code that makes absolutely no sense. Like using the letters "U R" instead of "you are." Drives me crazy. This is not a text message. It's a blog. You have an actual keyboard. Try using it.

I liked Bag of Bones. Apparently the critics made this big fuss about it being his first literary novel. Which amused me because it's not my favorite book by him at all.

You know what I liked best about the meeting yesterday, Beth? The fact that all we have to do is exchange a glance and we right away know what the other is thinking. It's nice to know that our psychic powers work away from the bar.

Anyway, yes, I'm working overtime today. I'll see you later.

Adios, mi amiga

Monday, August 23, 2004

Olympic hopeful?

As a child, disillusionment was my forte. For some random reason, my parents and I felt I could be athletic. It took many years before the realization set in about which sports I could enjoy.

Swimming - Have you seen Michael Phelps? I'm sure you have. The hype is strong and this 19-year old won 8 medals in the Olympics. I must say, he's kind of cute. He is a great swimmer. I am not.

My mom enrolled me in beginner's swimming when I was 5. At the age of nine, she told me I did not have to go anymore. I was still in the beginner's swimming class. Four years in a row, I failed beginner's swimming. If I go near a pool today, I still can't swim. I can splash around in the shallow end, but if I put my head under the water, I start drowning immediately.

I am terrified of water. The diving board also made me fearful of heights. My mom is mean.

Since swimming was not the best choice for me, other sports were added to my schedule to see which I could become an Olympic hopeful in.

Gymnastics - Angi's blog discusses her adventures with being a gymnast. Her adventures lasted much longer than mine did. (And they are more interesting. Check out her blog.) I went to one gymnastics practice when I was 5. One. When talking to my mom about this, she doesn't even remember enrolling me. She told me, "You were a chubby kid. You wouldn't have been in gymnastics." My dad's memory was much better. "Yeah, you went to gymnastics. You were always doing somersaults around the house." Why did I only go to one practice? Because my ride got kicked out. My Olympic dreams (and the dreams of being physically fit in my adult life) plummeted.

What did my family decide to do with this failure? Give up on sports? No.

Figure skating - My dad spent many years playing hockey. He never played professionally but only because the state we lived in did not have a professional team. He would have tried out for it if there had been a way to play and still be close to home. Because he spent so much time on the ice, it was a natural idea for me to try figure skating. Unfortunately, girls playing hockey was not common when I was little and figure skating is what I tried.

Figure skating was not the entire disaster that swimming was. I fell down many times (that ice is cold! Duh, like I need to explain that ice is cold.) The time came around where I became better at skating around the rink. It was the spinning and jumping I never accomplished. I had a better time chasing people around trying to body check them. Yeah, hockey would have been better.

Basketball - I did this for two years. My first year in basketball was horrible. I was the youngest on the team and everyone else had played for a couple of years before me. They did much better and I did not get many chances to play. In this season, I got the ball 3 times. That's right, 3 times the entire year. The first shot I took went a little bit short. Okay, a lot bit short.

The second attempt was not short. It went long. I hit the wall behind and above the hoop. I learned from my mistakes. The third attempt made that wonderful swoosh! sound. It was enough to get me enrolled the next year.

The second year of basketball was much better. I played in every game, I made many baskets. I was actually one of the better players on our team. I guess I was a natural for fighting for the ball (you know, the hockey roots in my blood). Considering how influential basketball was at my high school, I could have stayed in the sport and probably been an athletic star at my school. (The girls' team usually traded state championships with one other school each year.) Did I stay in basketball?

No. The games were on Saturday mornings and I found a new sport to take over that time slot. Before I go into that sport, I am going to discuss a couple of other failures.

Softball - I played in four games of one season. In the fourth game, my coach decided to let me try pitching. Since I cannot hit the ball, he figured maybe I could throw it. I can't. I walked 20 people in a row. That's right. I pitched 80 times and pitched a ball each time. That was my last game of softball on an organized team.

Volleyball - We played volleyball many times in school. Again, it was not my specialty. I decided against trying out for the team when my nose was almost broken. I used my nose to save the ball from hitting the floor. This was not intentional.

Soccer - We also played soccer in school. I loved running back and forth on the field and I was pretty decent at it. The guys would usually pick me first when choosing teams. I think this was because hockey was in my blood and the guys were afraid I'd be on the other team. My dreams of playing soccer were crushed when the guy who slammed my nose with the volleyball did the same thing to me with a soccer ball. It's amazing my nose never broke. This guy, David, was over six feet tall in eighth grade and weighed about 230 pounds. His spike over the net hurt but the kicking of the soccer ball was even more painful.

Track - Not even a chance. I tried to run. Sprinting wasn't so bad. I can run fast for very short distances. Unfortunately, my school didn't really focus on this. I could run the first lap around the track just as fast as any other person at school. Then I would have to sit down for a long time. Distance running is not something I was blessed with. I never tried out for track because I knew I would be laughed at.

I see now that badminton and trampoline are Olympic sports. I did have a trampoline as a kid. I got hurt quite often. The badminton net was something in our backyard and I had a lot of fun with it. I never knew this was an Olympic sport, otherwise I might have tried to do more with it.

I also took my turn at karate. I think this is an Olympic sport. I did well. I graduated with my class the first year. The white belt was replaced with a yellow belt. Then my school discontinued the program. My dreams were 'crushed' again.

What is the sport I finally fell in love with, you ask? Bowling. I loved it. I still do. I just work nights and can't join a league. I spent every Saturday morning at the bowling alley from age 10 until I was 18. In high school, I joined the high school team. This allowed me to go to practices on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. We had tournaments and meets on Thursdays and Fridays. I still went to the other league on Saturdays. Then I would spend Saturday afternoons in other tournaments and bowling for fun. On Sundays, I would go bowling with my family. It even got to the point that my friends and I would go bowling on Friday nights after the tournaments. I lived and breathed bowling.

I lettered in bowling four times. I was the first student at my school to do this. I made many friends and I was even the captain of the high school team for three years. It was my personal goal to keep the sport going at our school. The first year I joined the team, it was Steve and I from our school. Our team was filled out with members from another school. The second year, we were up to six players. By my junior year, I had two teams going with six players on each team. I will post some stories about that happy time of my life. I met my first boyfriend from bowling. I met my second and third as well.

When I graduated high school, bowling in an youth league was no longer an option. I joined an adult league and met lots of great people. My interest in sports increased, I just realized which sports I could do. I turned to billiards and darts.

I'm athletic. I believe this. I'm just athletic when it's okay for people to drink and laugh and talk. I like social sports.

The Olympics are something I will never experience personally. Am I okay with this? I guess so.


At 10:32 AM, CarpeDM said...

Cute story! Well, I'm fond of you, even though you'll never compete in the Olympics.

And, if it makes you feel better, you can continue to kick my ass every time we go bowling, billiarding or darting.

I know billiarding isn't a word. But I like to verb.

At 6:04 PM, angelia said...

I can't bowl, I can't play pool, I can't play darts (and I have an electronic dart board). I envy your abilities.

The new scent for men to drive women mad! Just not with desire.

It happened again. Dana wrote about the first experience, Beer Goggles - Parts 1 & 2. Scroll down on the link and you'll see what I'm talking about. I told myself the night of Beer Goggles that I would not wear a certain red t-shirt to karaoke ever again. Now I need to add a red sweater to that collection of non-public shirts.

The evening started off great. Dana and I pull up to the karaoke bar, ready for our soda and some great singers. A group of singers were there and we actually got to hear a duet of Picture that we didn't hate. Horrible song, pretty melody.

The group of great singers leave and it opens the door for a young man celebrating his birthday to get up and sing. There are great songs to sing at karaoke. Neil Diamond is a popular choice. Joe Cocker works well. Any country song tends to go over well in the bar we attend. Metallica does not fit in well. The young man decided to sing Sad But True by Metallica. It was not pretty. Here's a clue - the words are on the monitor.

Dana and I are karaoke junkies. If you get up and sing, we will clap. We may not yell, "Whoo-hoo!" if you torture our ears, but we do clap because the effort to sing is appreciated. He got the polite golf clap. It was short.

This was his clue to meander back to his seat and down a few more drinks. Once filled up with the nectar-not-of-the-gods, he beelined me. I feel I now understand what matadors feel as the bull runs towards the red flag. Unfortunately, I don't have a deadly weapon hidden in my bra.

Bryan was wonderful. As this man came up to our table, he called me up to sing. I tried a new song, not a good one by the way, and he stared at me singing. As much as I did not enjoy the song I was singing, it unfortunately came to an end and I had to return to my chair.

As I sit down across from Dana, he sits down next to me. "May I sit here?" he asks.

Here is my problem. I don't like being mean. He's drunk and never really did anything bad to me (except for the Metallica - which, don't get me wrong, I like Metallica. This seems like an odd choice of music for me, but I do enjoy the occasional Metallica song). The inherent part of my character comes out and I say, "Well, it's the last song of the night. I don't care." He sits.

Leaning forward, he breaths, "What's your story?" He doesn't talk. He's drunk and slurring words. I think he said, "What's your story?" It sounded as if he said, "Whaaaaaaaaaaa blah u-ba sor-ie?"

I look at Dana and the telepathic thought occurs. She understands my, "Oh God, not again. I hate red shirts. Maybe I'll wear a tarp next time."

"Everyone's got a story," he starts in again. "It might be short, like I went to the store, or it might be long. What's your story? How did you get here?"

Well buddy, I made it to karaoke by driving my car. I had two options, walk or use a mechanical vehicle to cover a distance of space. At this point, I'm still not responding.

He leans closer to me and exhales (he doesn't really speak. I'm pretty sure the ability to use one's vocal chords in normal fashion has left him), "So, what's your story?" (Or, Whaaaaaaaaaa ya sor-ie?)

I have to answer him. I say, "We came to karaoke. End of story."

Here's a clue. If you are talking to someone, hitting on them in a bar, you can tell if they are interested in the way they talk to you. If they answer your questions with simple, straightforward answers and do not extend the conversation by asking you questions, they are not interested.

"You have a good voice." (Or as I heard, "Ya haf go boyce.")

I reply, "Whatever." Does he get it with this? No, no he does not.

Michael, singing the last song, is now finishing up his rendition of Johnny Cash's Hurt. He is doing a wonderful job and I want to enjoy the song. It's a great song!

Interrupting the wonderful singing by Michael (a regular at karaoke and a super nice individual) is the drunk man next to me. "Who sings this?" (Whooooooooo ingzzzz diz?)

"Michael is singing it now. The version he is singing is Johnny Cash."

"Oh, he's good." (O, ez goo.)

Michael ends the song and Bryan says goodnight to the audience. He notices the horrible state of affairs at our table. Walking over to us, he starts speaking to Dana and myself. While we are eagerly conversing with Bryan, the drunk man feels ignored and finally wanders off. THANK YOU!

I explain to Bryan and Dana the interesting 'cologne' this gentleman used this evening. Maybe it's because he kept breathing on me or it might have been the fact he smelled like he took a bath in golden suds, I was not attracted to his overpowering stench of beer.

I may not be a beer drinker, however I understand that some people do desire the taste of a good bottle of suds. That's fine by me. As I stated, I'm not a beer drinker, but my sense of smell can differentiate from someone toasted on Guiness versus Bud Lite. I don't even have a problem with people drinking, in moderation. It is when the top brain stops working and bottom brain takes over, men start annoying me.

Driving Dana home, we noticed a billboard advertising the "Great Taste" of a brand of beer. Notice the sign pointed out the sense of taste, not the sense of smell. Beer breath is not attractive.

I learned something at karaoke this week. I learned being polite gets you nowhere when someone has lost the ability of complex thought. I learned red is not my color (or maybe it is - that could be the problem). I also learned how Dana and Bryan can be lifesavers. The red sweater is going into retirement.


At 11:40 AM, CarpeDM said...

Next time, I'm wearing the low cut red shirt (which I don't own so apparently I need to go shopping). Let's see if my "girls" can get some attention. They are long overdue for some ogling.

I loved this post, Beth. When something like this happens, the only thought that really goes through your head is "Oh, God, please make him go away." It's after the fact that you can look back and laugh at the silly drunks.

Why are we so nice to them? It's not like they're going to remember it. And I think Bryan (and maybe even Bobby) will have our backs.

At 4:39 PM, Matt said...

Always rememebr the occasional Big Brother that will have your back as well, I will always be there for you, just call. I am sorry that I was not there, I would have liked to have seen what would have happened if I was.
P.S. Should I wear my low cut red shirt next time? I bet I might get some attention with my bongos.....

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

I hate, I hate, I hate bugs

Everyone has a fear or two. Let me just say, spiders and other bugs freak me out!

I already wrote about how today exhausted me. See the post below for that information. I walk into my apartment tonight. My first objective, use the bathroom. You know how it is. I walk in the small room and am getting ready to use the facilities when I look down. There is a bee crawling on the floor. It might have been a wasp actually. I know it was something with a stinger.

All by myself, I screamed. Then reality set in, this is not a large monster who will bite my head off in 2 seconds. It is a crippled bug crawling on the tiles of my bathroom. I can deal with this.

I wear boots. I like boots. I don't have to worry about whether or not my socks match my shirt since no one can see my socks. What is the point about the boots? They're good for squishing bugs. Normally.

Composing myself, I decide to step on the bug. Squish.

Problem solved, I lift up my foot. The bug is still crawling.

Okay, panic is trying to set in. I fight it off. Logic is telling me there is no reason to freak out. I'm not allergic to bees. This crosses my mind. Then logic kicks in again and tells me, "But stings hurt."

It is time to squish the bug again. I do this.

Since the first step didn't kill it, I move my foot around, trying to ensure the squishing of the bug.

Now I lift my foot.

This flippin' bug is still moving around.

And then it starts flying!

I scream again. Yes, I did scream again. My neighbors are probably trying to figure out why I'm screaming after midnight.

The bug flew, but not for long. One of the steps was crippling enough to take the distance out of it's flight pattern.

This is when I realize the boots I'm wearing have a pretty decent tread on them. I'm pretty sure I just covered the bug with my foot, I didn't actually squish it.

What am I to do? I spied (with my little eye) my brown boots nearby. I grabbed one of them, checking the bottom and seeing no tread. Hallelujah! I use my right hand as a foot and plant the boot down on the bug. It squished. I heard it.

Happy, I lift up my boot. The bug flew at me! This is a super bug!

Did I scream again?

No, but I wanted to. I ran away from the bug. I gave the bug the evil eye. It stopped flying at that point.

The crawling around was getting slower so I pulled up my courage to try again. Finally, my squishing technique showed success and the bug was dead. It was also in three pieces. I had to make sure.

I discarded the evil bug with the helpful tissue. It is gone, but not forgotten.


At 1:44 AM, angelia said...

Beth, you are definately the comic relief of the night. I adore your bug story. Hey, everyone has a fear....a fear of bugs is legitimate for many people. Smile!

At 9:32 AM, Firebear said...

People match their socks with their shirt? I thought that was an urban legend.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Ew, ew, ew

As I stood in front of my closet today, my brain still half-asleep, it never crossed my mind that a green, overly large, untucked, and non-form fitting polo shirt I picked out would have caused the experience I later had at work.

I'm standing at work, five hours later, talking to a banker on our team. What are you supposed to say when someone is obviously not making eye contact, not because they're shy, but because their eyes can't seem to pull away from another area? This employee was flat out staring at my chest. This shirt shows absolutely nothing of my chest and is not a flattering shirt. I don't get it.

This really bothered me, obviously, I wouldn't be blogging about it if it didn't. I think what concerns me the most is that he wasn't listening to the answer of the question he asked. Not with his eyes practically falling out of his head. It was like one of those cartoons, you know, where the lead sees someone they are attracted to and to emphasize it, the eyes start bouncing around the screen.

I feel dirty.


At 11:23 AM, CarpeDM said...

No way. What a jerk.

I would suggest one of two things - either you let Matt or I talk to this person or you maybe mention it to HR if it happens again. No one should ever be made to feel this way.

At 9:14 PM, angelia said...

I am sorry that happend to you!

At 11:43 AM, Firebear said...

I like breast as much as the next guy, but would expect better of a professional in a work location

Monday, August 16, 2004

I'm pretty sure it's my choice in men

The final straw in my dating disastrous life is about a man I met a long time ago.

I was nineteen, just coming home from my first year at college, ready for a long summer of fun with old friends. My parents told me a couple of men would be staying at our home for three weeks to learn about running businesses in a democratic society. The two men were Ukrainian and one was my age.

At first, I was not interested in the fact there would be visitors at our home. I always had fun with the guests. Hosting foreigners is always a learning experience and I learned a lot this time.

Alex was my age. He walked in the front door and I got my first look at him. He was tall, cute in a dorky sort of way, and he smelled great! The thought crossed my mind, 'This might not be so bad after all.' Not that I really thought it would be bad, I just didn't imagine the time to be so good.

Since we were the same age and younger than the other participants by at least 5 years, Alex and I spent a lot of time together. He wanted to see what nineteen-year olds in America did for fun. We went to carnivals, movies, and played pool often.

When others were around, he kept the fact he spoke English low-key. He did not want to be the translator for his group, but he spoke English just fine. Our conversations would go for hours and we laughed all the time.

Alex showed me so much. I was accustomed to diversity before meeting him, however he opened my eyes even more. In knowing him, I learned I could have a great friend in any part of the world. Interests are common and nationalities, races, religion, or any other difference doesn't mean much on an individual level. It's too bad that governments can't see this and the regular guy is always the one who has to deal with the ego-maniacs in charge.

I introduced him to country music. This is odd, since I'm not a country fan. He loved Garth Brooks music. We watched movies together. I think his favorite during the visit was Men in Black. He would walk around saying, "I'm ze best of ze best of ze best!" Okay, I thought it was incredibly cute.

Alex was the perfect man for me to meet at nineteen. Before meeting him, I never believed in love at first sight. I do now. Sometimes it just clicks. I fell for him and I fell hard.

At night, we would sit together downstairs talking. We shared our dreams and fears. We discussed our plans in life. I enjoyed every single moment with Alex and I cherish those memories today.

On the night before he was supposed to return to Ukraine, there was a banquet in the honor of the guests. I drove him to the dinner and he said to me, "I miss my parents, but I don't want to go home. I don't know the words to express what I'm feeling." I believe in my heart the words cannot be expressed. I felt it too.

The realization he was leaving, to live across an ocean, hit me. I was a total wreck at the dinner. Speeches about the experiences with the guests were shared. I stole away to the bathroom a couple of times to dry my eyes and compose myself. We returned home, knowing that the morning would come faster than we wanted it to. It was late before we turned in for bed. I slept terribly that night.

In the morning, I ventured to the living room and spoke to my parents. Something was wrong. My dad told me that Alex was sick. Since he wouldn't speak English around my parents, they did not understand what was wrong. They thought it was nerves, butterflies in the stomach.

I went to speak to Alex. Here is our conversation:

B: Alex, what is wrong?
A: I have a pain.
B: Where?
A: It is like a knife right here.
He pointed to his lower right torso. I'm not a doctor but I knew this wasn't butterflies in the stomach.

I went downstairs and spoke to my parents. "I think Alex has a problem with his appendix." So instead of leaving for the airport, we went to the emergency room.

I helped Alex check in with the nurses and he was admitted. The doctors checked him out and he was off to surgery. My family paced around the waiting room, waiting for news. Finally, a doctor came out to tell us that Alex was back in his room.

It was appendicitis. If he had gotten on the plane, his appendix would have burst in mid-air and he would have died of blood poisoning. As scary as the experience was, we were happy to have Alex safe and sound. He was prohibited to fly for another week and this was probably some of the best news I ever heard.

During that extra week, Alex and I spent even more time together. That month was the one of the best of my life. I smiled and laughed every day. And every day, I knew that his flight was getting closer.

I would have married him. Right then and there. I fell head over heels in love with a man who lived across the globe. The logical part of my brain told me this would never work. My heart screamed at me to fight for any chance I could get. I look back and I still would have married him to have him stay.

My mom knew what I was feeling. She understood how much I did not want to let him go. She held my passport as we said good-bye to leave for the airport. It was all she could do to not buy me a ticket to fly to Ukraine with Alex. I would have gone. Looking back, I am glad I did not go, not because of Alex, but because of all I would miss here. I love the life I have. I love my family. I love my friends. I love my home. It is a hard decision to leave all that you know for the hope of something great. Life throws scary moments at you and those moments change you. I know now where I belong. As much as it pains me to say it, I couldn't give up for him what I wanted him to give up for me.

Alex promised me at the airport he would come back. We planned on visiting him in Ukraine. I did not give up hope of seeing him again.

My sunglasses stayed on the entire time at the airport. My eyes watered and I struggled internally with letting him go. It was time for him to board the plane. We stood up and walked to the boarding area. He paused before giving the attendant his ticket. He turned to me and kissed my cheek. It was time to say good-bye. I could barely speak. Few words were spoken and he turned back to the attendant.

She took his ticket and ushered him on. He turned back for one last look before he was out of sight, forever. His eyes brimmed with tears and then he was gone. I lost it. My dad and I went to the window to watch his plane taxi down the runway and take off into the sky. I stood at the window, regaining my composure, watching the man I loved leave me. It was the hardest thing I ever had to do.

Once the plane was out of sight, I walked to the car with my dad. He drove me home. We were silent. My parents were also sad to see Alex leave. He touched our home in ways I could never explain.

I wrote him letters for the first year after his departure. During the first three months, I went home on my lunch break every day to check the mail. Any news would have lifted my spirits higher than that plane taking him away could soar. There was nothing.

It was two and a half years before I heard from him again. One night I checked my email and there was a one line email from him. The communications in Ukraine are not as good as in America. He had received my letters, he was hoping my email account still worked.

Long story short, the letters he wrote never arrived. Either he had the wrong address or there was a problem with getting them out of Ukraine. After two and a half years, he finally was able to get an email account. The fact he hadn't forgotten about me refreshed all hopes I had. He sent me email cards, pretty and romantic. The emails were usually short, his confidence in writing in English was really low.

Finally, after five years, he was able to get ahold of a chat program. We were able to 'talk' live. This usually happened around 3 in the morning, my time. I asked him repeatedly about his life. He always responded by saying that he worked a lot. He is a lawyer working in politics. He helps write laws and proposals for parliament.

I helped him to get some computer equipment for his laptop. It turns out, Dell won't ship outside of the United States. He needed a replacement battery for his computer (which cost quite a bit) and then I had to Fed-Ex it to Ukraine (this cost twice as much as the battery). I was happy to do this. If I could make his computer work better, I could talk to him more often.

He received the battery and we spoke again online. He emailed me a couple of pictures. One was of him, smiling that sweet smile I fell in love with. The second picture was the people he worked with.

As I looked at the picture, I noticed a pretty young woman in the group. You know the type. Blonde, thin, blue eyes, and beautiful. She smiled at the camera with that 'I'm confident, happy, and in control' look. Something told me to wonder about her.

I asked Alex who all these people were. His description was so nonchalant. He said, 'The first man is such-and-such, my boss. The woman next to him is fill in a name, she is a secretary in the office. Next to her is the manager of something important. The forth person is the head of some department. The fifth person is Tatiana. She is in charge of something and is my wife. The next person is..." Okay, I don't remember what all the people were in charge or who they were. He explained each one and casually inserted the fact that this blonde, beautiful, and confident woman was his wife.

Okay, now I understand the whole not putting your life on hold because there is someone across the ocean who cares for you deeply, but when someone asks you what has happened in the last five years of your life, mentioning that you got MARRIED is not something you forget! When I read that sentence, my stomach dropped almost as much as my mouth. How do you respond to something like this?

I'm happy for Alex. Expecting him to return to America to spend his life with me was a pretty unrealistic fantasy. But it was nice to dream. Five years does change people and I knew he wasn't going to come back. I think it was just the delivery and finality of it that hit me so hard.

I still admire Alex. He is a personal hero of mine. I learned so much from his visit to our home and the way he lives his life inspires me to become a better person. I will always remember him, that man walking down the hallway towards his plane and the look on his face. He touched my heart and showed me that love, even if it doesn't last, is worth the pain.

But seriously, why do I fall for guys I have no chance to be with? I find a wonderful, charming, respectful, cute, intelligent, kind, courteous, funny, straight man who cares for me as much as I do him but of course he lives across the globe. I'm doomed. That's all that's to it.


Matt said...

You are not doomed. You will find the right man, and he had better pass all of the tests that he has to, because if he doesn't I feel soory for him. Not because of the physical pain that he will be feeling, can you guess from who?, but from the wonderful joy he will be missing out on getting to spend time with a person as wonderful, charming, funny, beautiful, and intelligent as you. So do not fret, I will not let my Little Sister go through her life that way.

At 11:21 AM, CarpeDM said...

You know what I don't get? How can someone as perfect as Alex be such an idiot? "Hey, Alex, I haven't spoken to you in 5 years. What's new?" "Oh, I'm glad you asked, Beth. I got married." How hard is that to say?

As much as this post made me cry because of the romantic turmoil you were in and the obvious love between you, I am also glad that you didn't get on the plane. I would miss the heck out of you. I realize that I didn't know you then but I would still miss you. You're family now.

And Matt's right, the right guy is out there for you. And he better watch his step. Else I will fork him!

At 11:44 AM, Firebear said...

Thank you for sharing this story.

A good day

Today was a good day. Being Monday and my day off, I slept in pretty late. Adam called me at 3:30 in the afternoon and I woke up. The hot shower woke me up fully and then Keem and Dana stopped by for a couple of hours. We had some good scrapbooking conversations and I showed them my new project. I'm taking pictures (duplicates of ones already in scrapbooks) and making my own type of frames for them. I bought some magnets and now have covered the closet doors of my apartment with pictures of those I love.

Adam came over to spend time with me. We went out to dinner and played some cards. It was like old times. I miss my former roommate. It was really nice to spend a few hours with him, just chatting. I really miss coming home and seeing him in the living room. Don't get me wrong, I love my place and I love living alone, but it does get a little lonely. I spend a lot of time on the computer, scrapbooking, and watching movies. When there is no one else on the same schedule as yourself, it is easy to get shut off from the world. Maybe one of these days it will change. Whatever happens, happens.

I made some more of my frames for the closets and I'm currently watching a bunch of Frankenstein movies. They are interesting to say the least.

I checked my hit counter and found the strangest search for my site. Someone found my site by searching for the phrase, "wanted to ream her". Slightly scary. I'm wondering what context they were looking for.

I'm planning another dating disaster post. This may explain why I am doomed to be alone. I don't really believe that, but it sometimes feels hopeless. Onto the next post!

Another dating disaster

Some of my recent posts have been about the dating disasters in my life. I'm not good at it. Who knows why? Is it me? Is it the guys I find attractive? Is it that something better is supposed to be coming? In the spirit of my recent posts, I'm going to share my experiences with a boy I dated for awhile in high school.

Harry was good looking. I mean he was the boy all the girls swooned over. He was intelligent, funny, fit, and nice to look at. Notice I didn't mention decent human being.

As smart as Harry was, he did some stupid stuff. He was smart, I want to point that out. He aced classes at school without any effort and sometimes this is the worst factor in making a guy want to push boundaries. When one is bored, one looks for something to do.

Harry's mother had to deal with the police one day because her son had been seen throwing vinyl records from their roof at people walking by. He was trying to see if albums could fly like freesbies. He almost decapitated someone. So the police showed up on the front stoop.

I was eighteen when I dated Harry. He was seventeen so there were things he couldn't do and wanted to. One night, we stopped at the video store for a movie and he tried to convince me to rent porn. Not being into porn, I declined his request. His cousin, fifteen and tagging along since he couldn't drive, found some educational videos that they could rent. The boys rented a video about breast feeding.

What were they thinking? Breast feeding is not erotic. This should have been evident in the fact that they could rent it without being eighteen. (And I don't know why seventeen-year olds can't rent porn. They can see rated R movies, but whatever.) The boys did not make it very far into the video and even if they didn't really learn about breast feeding, they learned about what not to watch.

As the school year drew towards the end, Harry and I went out to the drive-in one night. His cousin, Brett, came along, but didn't want to pay the lousy $5 to get in. He rode in the trunk of the car (I can't believe I participated in this - I'm shaking my head still when I think about it) and then walked home after the first movie. That left Harry and I with two movies to get cozy.

Did we?

What do you think?

The movies we saw that night were, as follows: Liar, Liar, Dante's Peak, and Daylight. As much as I don't really like Jim Carrey, Liar, Liar was the best of the films. Dante's Peak wasn't too bad and Daylight was terrible. Unfortunately, I know how the movies were. That's because we watched them. Sitting silently in the car, we watched the movies. We did not even hold hands during this.

You might ask, did Harry even want to do anything? I know the answer is yes due to the fact his father gave him away before we even left for the drive-in. When he found out where we were going for the evening, he turned to his friend and stated, "Oh, they're going to the passion pit [and about 5 more phrases I don't remember]."

Harry, embarrassed, tried to rush me out of the room quickly. His dad's friend asked, "Are these two an item?"

His dad replies, "Yes, but he hasn't made a move yet. These two lovebirds haven't even kissed."

Knowing this conversation, which means I know Harry has spoken to his father about us, I sat in a cold car watching Daylight at 2:30 in the morning, doing nothing. The movie ended and we went home.

A few weeks later, Harry and I had our night of indiscretion. Thankfully (looking back), we did not go so far as regrettable activities, but we did express our feelings for each other.

Let me make this clear right now. I did not love Harry in any way. I liked him a lot (remember, he was funny, smart, and nice to look at). We were stupid teenagers caught up in our hormones (and even though I know it was not legal, some alcohol may have been involved).

Come to think about it, alcohol and I are not a good combination. I get flirty (which normally my logical side prohibits this). One good thing I can say for myself is that even with alcohol, I always hit a point where I know alcohol is the factor driving me and I stop what is about to happen. I don't drink anymore unless it is the once in a blue moon Mudslide from T.G.I.Friday's. I don't really like the taste of alcohol. I prefer Coca-Cola, straight up.

After the night of drunken groping, Harry and I started to drift apart. The tension had passed. We both knew how the other felt and that it wouldn't work. We tried for a few more weeks after that. My graduation party was the final stroke of bad times.

As with most grad parties (at least from my experience), my parents let me have a few wine coolers. Remember how I react to alcohol? Let's just say I got a little flirty again, this time in front of the majority of my family and all of my friends. Harry and I started with a grass fight. My dad had just mowed the lawn and we picked up the chunks of grass and started throwing them at each other.

Why didn't we stop there? Why?

Next came the water fight. The hose and water buckets were used and soon we were soaked.

Then we moved inside. Magic markers were found and soon we were drawing all over each other. As embarrassing as this is, I'll just say, I didn't win. Hey, he had siblings and I'm an only child. I'm not good at horsing around.

My own mother made some comment about this being foreplay. It probably was, but luckily it didn't lead up to anything. He killed the mood later that evening.

After the party and after we got cleaned up, I went to his house so we could then go out. He made a comment that infuriated me. His views on diversity are not the same as mine. I left. Remember when I said he wasn't a decent human being? The comment he made that night was what proved it to me. I'm not going to share the comment here, but I will share his sister's response. She is a decent human being. Her response to him was, "Harry, how can you say that? Not only have our parents taught us differently, but we are also half Native American. We should have an understanding of diversity." He scoffed and that was it for our relationship.

I heard from him one more time. He called me one day to ask if I would buy some book for him that he wasn't quite old enough to purchase himself. I declined and we never spoke again.

I have seen him a few times since that evening, but I've always avoided conversation. Since he was just a guy I knew once, I don't feel too bad about dropping his 'friendship'. He was pretty to look at though.

Now, being the positive person I try to always be, I can be thankful for knowing Harry. There are things in my life that I wouldn't have today if it weren't for him.

Harry is the one who introduced me to a pool hall where I made a few great friends that I enjoy spending time with today. I made many memories in that pool hall and I wouldn't have gone there if it wasn't for him.

Harry, in that drunken night, made me feel special as a female. I have problems with my confidence in being seen as anything more than "the smart one" or "the responsible one" or "the one you can talk to". I know this sounds shallow, but the fact that he was interested in me for more than friendship made me feel a little bit special. It doesn't mean that I want anything to do with him today.

Harry also gave me advice to look for a job at a bank. At that point of my life, I didn't think I could work for a bank. I decided to give it a shot and was hired. I now have a job I love and my closest friends are all people I met through working at the bank. I have three friends in my life that I didn't meet through the bank. So, I'm thankful for knowing him and the advice he gave me over seven years ago. I'm not good at dating, but I guess I can handle a whole lot of friendship until I find that one who touches my heart and can accept all of my friends.


At 11:32 AM, CarpeDM said...

Harry is the type of guy that if you said "God, what an ass" to him, he would think it was a compliment.

I'm glad he mentioned the bank to you. Without you, there would be no NABABNA. Well, okay, it would still be there, but it wouldn't be as special.

At 4:57 PM, Matt said...

Well one of the best things in the world that had come out of all of this is the fact that had he never have metnioned the bank to you, you would never have discovered the long lost family that you found there. And I would never have gotten to know my little sister without those words of advice, so thankfully, he did give you one good thing to always remember. Talk to you later Sis.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

For the sake of Dana

I really should be getting going, but I'm sick and it's an excuse. I'm trying very hard to get the motivation to leave the house for a few hours.

I'm losing the battle.

In the true spirit of procrastination, I decided to log on and check out my emails and a few blogs. I noticed that Dana wanted to know what it was I was crying about in the Home Depot commercial.

It's a simple commercial. It shows athletes at the Olympics competing. Then it shows their names and what department of Home Depot they worked at. Like Hardware or Flooring. Then it says that Home Depot is the company that has helped the most United States Olympians and Olympian hopefuls. It's just a commercial showing support. Very simple. Made me cry. Because I was emotional that day.

I went to work yesterday. For a half hour. I have a stupid cold (probably because the temperature in Minnesota keeps fluctuating greatly and it felt like October for most of last week). I came home, took a bunch of drugs (Advil Cold & Sinus and Nyquil at bedtime) and sat around watching movies. I watched 4 movies about the Wolf Man last night.

Told Dana no to karaoke tonight. I'm too sick to go. I'm sad about this, but I need to get better. My manager is out all next week and I need to be able to work.

Well, I'm off for a few hours. I may write more tonight. Later!


At 9:03 PM, CarpeDM said...

I hope you feel better. Thank you for telling me why you were crying. I am obsessive.

Keem, Jeff and Mike are watching (although I actually typed wearing until I realized my mistake) House of Sand and Fog. I am blogging. I think I'm having more fun.

Just for fun - Give me back my house! Do you think she listens to Every time you go away, you take a little piece of me? I bet she does.

At 9:09 PM, angelia said...

I hope you feel better my friend.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

I'm emotional

I am about the world's least athletic person. I don't watch sports, I could not explain how the points in football are accumulated. But for some random reason, I find myself watching the opening ceremony of the Olympics (on replay - that's the beauty of being a night owl) and I'm crying over stupid commercials. That's right. I'm crying over a stupid Home Depot commercial.

So far I have realized that the theme from Jurassic Park was playing over James Earl Jones's voice. I'm now waiting for a T-Rex to show up and storm the arena. This probably won't happen. I hope it doesn't.

A nine-year old boy just rode a boat across the water, waving a flag symbolic of something that Bob Costas explained. I didn't quite catch what it was. This boat the kid was riding on looked like a paper boat. You know, the kind you can make out of a piece of newspaper. Maybe I've read IT by Stephen King too many times, but now I'm thinking, "They all float down here!"

That's right folks, I went from crying over a commercial to horror movies/books. I may need mental help.

Now there's a lady standing around, holding a plastic head and looking at the 1/2 horse, 1/2 man thing (centaurs - I don't remember how to spell this and I know Dana will be upset by this). A cycladic (I don't know if this is the right word) head came out of the ground and there's images being bounced off it. Ahhhh! The head just broke apart into many pieces and now the pieces are floating to show "more realistic statues showing the dawn" of the human body. This was from Katie Couric. And now the bodies are supposed to represent the Greek Islands. I'm so confused. I should probably pay more attention to this.

"The Greeks call this young man, Cube Man." There's a guy suspended in the air on a cube, walking around. I just think the name, Cube Man, is oh, so descriptive.

Okay, enough of this. I just had to share a few random thoughts. Now I'll pay more attention and stop letting my mind find the oddities of the opening ceremony.


At 6:01 AM, CarpeDM said...

Actually you got it right. It is centaur. I have no idea what the other stuff was though.

What was going on with the Home Depot commercial? You can't tease me like that. If there is crying over commercials, I need to be a part of it! Tell me! Tell meeeeee!

Friday, August 13, 2004

I've been found through the Web!

Dana showed me how to see how people find our sites. I know she talks about this every once in awhile and I wanted to see if anyone found my site in interesting ways.

I've had two searches that pulled up my sight for others. The first hit was for someone looking for clickable Sharpies. My pen fascination must be a shared interest!

The other person who found my sight did a search for billy-bumbler, which is one of the main characters in the Stephen King series, The Dark Tower. Oy is a cute little character that is part of the ka-tet searching for the Tower.

I feel special.


At 2:25 AM, angelia said...

Sounds like fun, maybe Dana could show me!

At 5:59 AM, CarpeDM said...

You are special, Beth. I bought you a present today because you are special. And look, it's the perfect occasion!

I don't know why I even try to date

I don't know what it is, but this time of year always reminds me of a certain someone from my past. I have not seen or spoken to this individual in almost 5 years, but I still remember the smile on his face and the horrible way we never got it together.

One night, when I was in high school, this boy, I'll call him Charlie, and I were hanging out, trying to figure out what to do. It was a summer night (school might have been out by this time), warm with a slight breeze. With no where to go the next day, we had time on our side and a night full of possibilities. We knew that Hale-Bop, the comet, was passing by the Earth. The bright idea occurred to us, 'Let's drive up north where there's no city lights and check out the comet!' In my head I'm thinking, 'This will be great! A long drive, an intimate conversation, then sitting under the stars. This is going to go where I want it to.'

Looking at Charlie, I can tell he's thinking, 'Hey, this will be cool. We'll be alone and what an opportunity.' There's a gleam in his eyes (remember the show Moonlighting? Where they had the attraction but it took so long for them to get together? This was my 'relationship' with him. If either of us had ever gotten the nerve to say anything, I'm pretty sure we would have been dating for a long time. But then, we're both chickens).

I start driving. We're heading off to see the comet (and hoping for so much more than an astrological event). The conversation was sweet, we always conversations that lasted for hours. We listened to love songs on the radio, I think he even sang along.

We get fifty miles away from home, the city lights are nil so we turn off to a back country road. Up ahead is a field, no buildings or trees to be seen. I pull the car up to the edge of the field and turn off the engine. Anxious, we both jump out of the car and start walking into the field. Once we're a good distance from the car, we stop and look up.

What do we see as we gaze into the sky?

A comet?

Shooting stars?



We saw clouds. That's right. The sky was not clear that night. There was cloud cover and we had no chance to view the comet. We drove for an hour to see nothing.

Our hopes PLUMMETED.

Neither of us ever looked up before we left (or on the drive) to see if we could see any stars. We were officially morons.

We're not ready to give up on spending time together, but we're both extremely logical people. You may be asking, why didn't these two teens sit under the clouds and talk? I'll answer that question. With no stars to look at, sitting in some random person's field seemed a little weird and creepy. Having a reason to sit there would have been better. We wouldn't feel like trespassers if there was a comet. We walk back to the car, our heads down in shame, shoulders slumped. We decided to go back towards home and do something else (I don't remember if we were going to go bowling or play pool or something like that).

Remember how we were fifty miles from home and on some back road in the country? Well, we got lost.

That's right. We got lost.

Up and down windy roads with absolutely no landmarks we drove.

We drove around for 45 minutes in the dark trying to find the highway to go home. Obviously, we eventually found it, otherwise I wouldn't be typing today.

Once we knew how to get home, the humour of the situation set in. (Yes, I spelt it that way on purpose.) I remember laughing the entire way home with Charlie. Even though we never saw the comet and never got our moment under the stars that evening, I remember just enjoying his company all night. This time of year reminds me of him and I smile.


At 1:38 PM, CarpeDM said...

I would have probably said "Charlie, are you going to kiss me or what?" I've said it twice (to people not named Charlie, of course). It worked both times.

The only problem, of course, is that my longest relationship was for 6 months so I really shouldn't be giving anyone dating advice.

This was a sweet story, Brooksba.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004


On my way to work today, I had to stop at a light. The car next to me (to my left) was being driven by a man appearing to be in his 40's. The backseat has a couple of little kids horsing around and there is a boy, I mean boy, in the passenger seat. This kid looks like he's about 15 years old, I'm assuming he doesn't drive yet and that his dad had to take him home from school or something. The kid has his baseball cap on his head sideways and my first thought is, "Look, it's the rebel from suburbia. He looks tough."

Since I'm looking around, being the observant driver, I accidentally made eye contact with this kid. My mistake. This boy starts looking at me, smiling, and he starts to roll down his window. That's right, a 15-year old boy started checking me out.

As my instant uncomfortable feeling set in, a miracle happened and the light changed. I held back and let the other car pull forward first. Since I was no longer next to the car, I see the window start going back up. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

It just disturbed me that a kid at least 10 years younger than I was checking me out. I feel icky.


At 11:21 AM, CarpeDM said...

How can we be friends? I would be thrilled to death if a guy 10 years younger than me would be checking me out...actually, I'd be thrilled if any guy started checking me out.

Oh, yeah, a guy 10 years younger than me would be 27. It really is kind of creepy that I think Frankie Muniz is hot, isn't it? Oh, well, at least he's legal now.

Monday, August 09, 2004

Nothing funny, just a serious note from me

Today was a pretty normal day for me. I don't work on Mondays (which is awesome!) and I slept extremely late as usual. I finally got out of bed around 3 in the afternoon (hey, I work nights! This is like a "day-timer" sleeping until 10 am). I sat around loading files from my old computer into the new one (like my entire CD collection - I love itunes). My mom called to let me know a package arrived at her house and that she was home from her weekend camping trip.

Motivation kicked in and I drove over to Mom's house. I got to see my dogs (I miss having them around all the time) and the cat that Mom rescued from the Twat (see Matt's blog about his 3rd most embarrassing moment and the title character for Matt's blog The Window Licking Cat). My mom and her boyfriend had spent the weekend camping in Wisconsin, got to see a couple of family members and visited the best meat market I've ever come across. My package was only one of the items I ordered, so I'll be visiting again soon. Mom also sent me home with about 10 pounds of fresh meat from this store (Leroy's Locker for anyone in Wisconsin). Yum!

Mom's boyfriend, Scott, showed me the array of fireworks he purchased. I'll just say, WOW! He is going to have fun finding a good place to shoot these off. I spent time chatting with Mom and holding my dogs. Well, Mom also picked up my dad some great food and on the way home I was dropping it off at his house.

When I got to my dad's, he told me some family news. My great aunt Marge passed away this weekend. I wasn't close to her, which is something I'll explain in a moment here. I think I only met her once at my great-grandmother's funeral in 1991. By mail, I did talk to her a few times and my grandfather kept in contact with her over the years. This is my paternal grandmother's sister.

I'm writing about this news because I am ashamed of the behaviors of a member of my family and I never want to become this way.

My grandmother, Gwen, is extremely stubborn. So was Marge, but not to the same extreme. My aunt, Becky, lived with Valerie (Marge's daughter) over 30 years ago. As roommates sometimes do, they had a small fight (no one remembers what it was about, it was that lame). Becky and Valerie didn't talk to each other for about 2 days. My grandmother got upset with Marge over this trivial thing and didn't talk to her for over 30 years.

At my great-grandmother's funeral, Marge walked up to my grandmother and said, "I don't want to keep this up anymore. I miss my sister. I'm sorry for anything that happened."

My grandmother turned her nose up and walked away.

Thirteen years later, Marge passed away. My grandmother's brother called and told the news to my grandmother and grandfather. It was my grandfather who passed the news onto my dad. I asked my dad tonight, "How did Grandma take it?"

His response, "Dad said she showed no emotion either way and that was it."

The thing is, if it had been my grandmother passing away first, Marge would have come to the funeral. She would have shown support to my grandfather and the kids. I didn't know her well, but what I did know was that she had a good heart and loved her family. My grandmother gave up knowing her only sister because of something stupid. It makes me really sad.

My grandmother has taught me in life to be stubborn. I know that I have a stubborn side. I've written people off before because of it. The only family member I use this on is my grandmother. And I still can't do exactly what she did. I don't have siblings, but I think that the bond should be stronger than that. I have learned a lesson from my grandmother and Marge. I hope that I never act as my grandmother did. I would be ashamed of myself.

That's all for now.


At 9:46 AM, CarpeDM said...

I'm sorry about your Aunt Marge, Beth. I don't think you'll ever have to worry about being like your grandmother. You're a great person and extremely giving and caring.

Anyway, got to go back to work. I'll be thinking of you. Ciao!

Friday, August 06, 2004

A couple of great sites that I found tonight

Linking through different blogs is fantastic. Tonight I found a few new sites that are just great. I'm starting to read Mighty Ponygirl Digest. Lots of great information and the picture of President Bush is cracking me up. I'm just thinking what Bush could do with that object in his hand. Okay, I don't really like Bush. That might be slightly evident.

I also like the site by Manjusha. Check out Far From Perfect. I'm starting to read this one as well. Lots of fun. I'll never get anything done around my apartment with all this reading.


At 11:43 AM, CarpeDM said...

Oh, my God! You have new links! And, you divided them! I am so proud.
I will have to check them out. I'm always in the mood for a good blog.

See you tonight!


I've mentioned before that I was upset with how small the windows and font was on my new computer. I was having the worst time trying to figure this out (that's how illiterate with computers I really am) and I finally asked this guy at work who knows more about computers than I do. Guess what? It was really, really easy to fix. Now I just have to get my printer/scanner working again and the speakers to play louder than a mouse. I'm so excited. The games on MSN (which I'm addicted to) are now larger than a 2x2 inch square. It's like 3x3 now!

I've probably mentioned this before, but I LOVE Conan O'Brien. Not stalking love, but just the humor behind this show is great. I work nights and don't watch much TV, but the fact that Conan is on twice each evening is so great for me. I'm watching a rerun right now but it's one I missed the first time out. Conan is now showing a video of his car. He's acting as if his 1992 Ford Taurus is the coolest car ever. The fact that the car is a stick shift makes me respect Conan even more! He just showed some guy that there are hornets nests in the trunk. And the great part is the fact the song they keep using is Simply Irresistible by Robert Palmer. He also just asked the Ferrari dealer how much crack he smoked this morning. Okay, I can't even concentrate on writing anymore. I would recommend this show to anyone. It's intelligent humor (most of the time) and always new. Well, that's my plug for Conan O'Brien for now.

Not much else to write about tonight. My brain is fried from work and I'm going to sign off.


At 10:51 AM, Sreekesh Menon said...

Intelligent Humour, there is no such thing on tv.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Are you my type?

I had a good day today. Ignoring all the crap I had to endure, I still had a good day. When I got to work, I realized that I had signed up to donate blood. This put me in a good mood. No, I don't enjoy needles in my arm, but they don't really bother me either. I find giving blood an uplifting experience. It's important to me to help where I can and giving blood is an easy thing to do. Heck, they give you cookies and a free soda when you're done!

There are some amusing things that happen though when you give blood. Here is my experience and what I wanted to say is in italics.

Nurse: Alright, I'm going to put the needle in your arm right now. Please look away.
Beth (That's me!): Why do I need to look away? I find it easier to deal with horror when I look at it in the face. Why do you think that Hitchcock movies are more frightening than Friday the 13th movies? It's because your imagination makes up a better monster. Okay.
N: That's done.
B: I'm glad. Thankfully you don't seem to have punctured extra veins and I'm not spilling my guts on the floor. Okay.
N: I'll be back in a couple of minutes.
N: Let's check how you're doing. Oh, good job!
B: Thanks. Wow! I can bleed. Hallelujah! I was so afraid that when a needle went straight into my veins that water would come out instead of blood. I feel so blessed!
N: Oh, I connected the tape to the chair. I guess you can't get up.
B: Um, I have a needle in my arm connected to a bag that's connected to the chair. I don't think it's the tape keeping me here. Do people really think they can get up when they're giving blood?
N: You'd be surprised. This kid jumped up once at a high school when his friend passed out. He ran out.
B: With the bag of blood attached?
N: Yes.
B: So, if you're taking the blood you just donated, is that stealing? That seems odd.
N: Yes. Look, you're almost done. Good job!
B: Okay, I know this has got to be a rough job. There's people who freak out at the sight of blood (like the woman they just took to the hospital apparently) but is 'Good job!' really appropriate? I mean, couldn't you say something like, 'You're almost done. That was easy.' Easy I could understand. Explain to people that this is not a horrific experience. Thanks.
N: What color bandages do you want?
B: I don't care.
N: How about purple?
B: Okay. I really have no opinion what-so-ever.
N: You're done. When you're ready, get up and get some food.
B (arising immediately): Okay. Thanks!

I have given blood many times before. I took a break after I got my tattoo (because you can't donate for at least a year). I have never, ever had a problem. That's just me though.

I don't know if you've given blood recently, but they ask some interesting questions. The one I have always been curious about is the one that can be changed for gender. I always get, "Have you had sex with a man who could have sex with another man since 1977?" I always tell truth (which is no) but I think next time I should ask, "I know you ask this question because you're worried about AIDS, but you ask a question specifically about AIDS. Does saying yes to this question disqualify you from giving blood?" I don't think this is correct. Maybe you just need to explain, but here's the thing. What would be wrong with blood from a gay man? They accept lesbian blood. There's no questions like, "Have you had sex with another woman since 1977?" It seems like the question is directed incorrectly. And what is up with 1977? Maybe my understanding of AIDS is incorrect, and don't hate me for being blunt, but how long has the longest person with AIDS or HIV survived? Is it 27 years? I just need to ask more questions the next time I go.

Giving blood makes you aware of all the things that could have gone wrong with your life in the past. In the past 6 years, they've added questions about spending more than 3 months in parts of Europe (Mad Cow's Disease), visiting Africa (I'm sure this is an AIDS question too), West Nile Virus, and SARS. It used to be, "Do you feel good today? Have you taken aspirin in the last 24 hours?" I'm glad they have the protections in place. It just seems like a lot being thrown at you when you sit down.

At the end of the experience, you get to get stickers. I'm still wearing the "Be nice to me. I gave blood today." My favorite sticker I saw today was the one that matches the title of this post. "Are you my type?" It's surrounded with the different blood types (O+, AB-, A+, B-, etc.). It's really cute.

That was my adventure today. I learned that I have a skill because I can bleed!


At 11:22 AM, CarpeDM said...

Dude. Congratulations on your new job as bleeder. I'm very impressed.

I commend you and all of your fellow bleeders. I am not a bleeder because of really, really small veins that roll whenever someone tries to put a needle in them. That and I'd be the person who passed out.

Ciao. See you later. You bleeder, you.So, are you hooked on blood?

At 12:18 AM, angelia said...

Hey, everybody has to have a skill!

At 2:38 PM, The Lioness said...

Africa is about AIDS, they're dying by the millions down there. I CANNOT give blood due to small psoriasis matter, EVER! Shit. It annoys the hell out of me bcs I would if i could and there's never enough in the blood banks (too many neutrophils, white blood cells connected with inflamation, not a good thing to pass on to someone IN NEED of a transfusion). I don't know how it is in the US but here not many people give blood. I might be allowed to register for bone marrow donation bcs they filter out the cells they need - so byebye neutrophils. But it's a longshot and i'm still pissed off. Bah.

Worst Pick Up Lines

I was walking into work the other day when a girl shared a story with me. It made me think of horrible things to say to someone to pick them up. The following is some of the worst things to say to a stranger whom you find attractive:

You look like someone who would know where the

  • correctional facility is
  • halfway house is
  • XXX porn shop is
  • strip club is
  • trailer park is
  • head shop is
  • drug rehabilitation center is
  • unemployment office is
  • pawn shop is
  • check cashing establishment is

Another weird conversation that I was told was from a guy I work with. We're trying to figure out if this woman was hitting on him or if she was just going a little bit crazy. Here's the conversation.

Woman: Have you seen my face on TV?

Man: Uh, no.

Woman: Are you sure?

Man: Yes.

Woman: My boss took pictures of me and now he's showing them on an adult film on public access.

Then she walked away. Here's my question. When did public access start showing adult films? I thought they only showed school lunch schedules and Trekkie conventions. Sure, there's the occasional high school choir/band concert, but porn? That doesn't happen.

Okay, those were just some of the random thoughts and conversations I had this weekend. Off to another fun filled week. And dealing with this computer!