Tuesday, December 30, 2008

PANIC!!

This should be the motto for myself and my family. We are a highly anxious set of people, and the smallest things spell doomsday and signify disaster. Child out of sight? Probably fell down a well. Not feeling well? Could be your appendix bursting. Forget to lock one of the locks on the front door? Thieves will back their vans up to your front door and rid you of all your earthly possessions. For years Danny has made fun of my for my PANIC! reflex, as he is the most laid back person on the planet who is not stoned. However, I have recently decided that I have managed to infect him with the PANIC! gene. My proof:

Danny, spying an empty milk carton on the counter: MIA! YOU DIDN'T DRINK THIS MILK DID YOU?
Me: No, it's expired so I dumped it in the sink.
Danny: IT'S EXPIRED! It expired a MONTH ago!!
Me: I just said that.
Danny: You didn't use it in the BATTER did you?
Me: No! It's expired and anyway you don't put milk in chocolate chip cookie dough!
Danny: Because it's EXPIRED! It'll make you DIE!

And, our phone conversation this morning after I had an "incident" with the motorized gate he installed at the front of our driveway.

Me: The gate hit my car and now the gate mechanism is making an annoying beeping noise. How do I make the beeping stop?
Danny: The GATE HIT YOUR CAR?!
Me: Yes, it's fine. Make the beeping stop.
Danny: Is the paint scratched?!
Me: NO. THE CAR IS FINE. MAKE THE BEEPING STOP!!
Danny: Can you move the car so the paint doesn't get scratched?!
Me: I have already moved the car. The car is fine. Make the effing beeping stop before I run the car into the gate again!
Danny: Is there a DENT in the car?!
Me: Danny. The car. Is fine. How do I make the gate stop beeping?
Danny: Oh, I don't know.

On the one hand I am pleased that I am not the only one susceptible to the PANIC! in our household, but on the other I am begining to discover how annoying it is to live with me.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

I Should Have Added an Eighth Item

I realized that, besides strange childhood obsessions, I could easily do a list of ways I have managed to maim myself with inanimate objects. I come by this naturally- my father has lost 1/2 a toe, given himself two black eyes (simultaneously), and 3 concussions since I've been a child. We are both somewhat unaware of where the boundaries of our bodies are, and are prone to walking around lost in thought and oblivious to our surroundings.

I have a dimple from hitting the corner of our tv when I was 3 or 4- fortunately I slammed my cheek into the corner of the tv at the perfect angle to produce an innocuous and normal looking dimple. You know, instead of a dimple in my skull. I used to have a scar in my eyebrow from falling off a slide in daycare. I had a partially detached retina from getting hit in the eye with a badminton racket. Don't let anyone tell you that badminton is a gentle sport- it can be brutal.

Recently I sprained my ankle by stepping on a rock. It was late, I was angry about a homework assignment, and my ever so charming German Shepherd had apparently gotten bored and decided to dismantle the stone wall by our back steps and helpfully leave the rocks at the base of the stairs. I don't know why she was trying to kill me, but ever since then I've kept my eye on her. Afterwards I lay in the dirt crying and getting jumped on by my darling puppy who was just thrilled that I had decided to lie on the ground and play dog with her. Oh, and Danny was out playing darts so I got to lie in the dirt for half an hour until I was able to hop my way into the house. My ankle swelled up, turned fun colors, and I got to gimp around for a month. I still can't wear high heels.

But I think this most recent injury is one for the record books. I spent the day raking up the dead weeds that are the closest we get to landscaping in our backyard and began dragging the bags through the house to the big garbage can out front. I'm going to have to explain what happened next very carefully because thus far the only people who have managed to understand have been my husband, who spent half an hour outside reenacting the accident, and my father, who understood immediately because it's only a matter of time until the same thing happens to him.

Try to picture this:
We have a big plastic garbage can with an attached lid. I opened the lid so that it was hanging down behind the can, then tipped the can back to wheel it closer to the front door. Unfortunately I didn't notice that when I tipped the can back it meant the lid was on the ground. Then I took a step forward, onto the lid of the can, causing the front edge of the can to swing forward into my face. Once again I found myself lying in the dirt trying to figure out what had just happened. I began screaming for Danny when I noticed the blood pouring from, well, somewhere, but he was in the backyard listening to the radio. I finally managed to drag myself to the bathroom where I discovered that I had a big flap of tissue where I used to have an upper lip and what appeared to be a hole in the side of my nose.

What followed was a stereotypical panicked drive to the hospital. Once there we were put in a little cubicle and periodically examined by various medical people who tried and failed to understand my muffled explanation of how it happened. One manly nurse assistant/competitive dirt biker showed me several of his 100 stitches with the reassurance "the doctor you're going to have will do a way better job than the one who did THIS one" and a nurse told me about the man who got both cheeks sliced through with a razor. I think both of these approaches were supposed to reassure me, but instead caused me to picture my poor upper lip deformed and hideous. I imagined myself unable to control my own saliva and having to carry around a hankie to wipe the drool off my chin.

All of my fears faded away when Dr. Woodman walked in. Gleaming grey hair- perfectly coiffed, icy blue eyes, bulging biceps, confident stride. He looked like he walked off the set of a soap opera. He whistled cheerfully as he prepared his needles, and murmured quietly "You can cry, you don't have to be brave" when he injected the anesthetic. I cried more because I felt that's what the script called for than because of the pain. When he finished he strode confidently away after saying, "now....you're pretty again".

His magic touch left me feeling confident about my face for about an hour- the amount of time it took to get discharged, walk to the car, and look at my face in the mirror. It's gross. I have a big crater on the side of my nose and six stitches on my lip. I have an overbite because my lip is so swollen, and I can't smile. Danny tried to convince me that my swollen lip makes me look like Angelina Jolie, but I think the resemblance is only fair if Angelina's upper lip had been gnawed on by Brad Pitt.

I don't mind the discomfort as much as I mind the fact that for the next 6 days I have to walk around looking like FrankenMia and trying to explain how I got my my ass handed to me by a garbage can. I'm thinking of drawing a diagram on some notecards and just handing them out so I don't have to repeat myself. Danny and I whiled away the hours in the ER coming up with plausible causes for my injury:
1. Bear attack
2. Ninja brawl
3. Knife fight
4. Tiny shark bite
5. Altercation with Chuck Norris

Additional ideas anyone?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Do you really need to know more weird things?

I was tagged by my old high school friend Sara (no h, she feels very strongly about this) to discuss 7 weird things you didn't know about me. This worries me, because to disclose even more things that make me weird than you already know means that they have to be very, very weird. I realized that the only way to accomplish this is to talk about my absolute most weird stage of life- elementary school. I was a very strange child, with even stranger interests. Thus, I bring you:
Strange Things I Was Obsessed* With During Elementary School

1. Saints- particularly saints of bizarre things, or saints that were protectors of obscure people. For example, Saint Roger the Whoremonger.

2. Chopin- I blamed my nerdom on my parents, because in my formative years I listened to cassette tapes about the lives of classical composers. Then, I saw a PBS movie about Chopin and his romance with George Sand. I immediately developed a crush on the pale, malingering actor playing Chopin. Tuberculosis is HOTT.

3. South Africa during the fall of apartheid- this obsession resulted in me writing a first person account of a journalist in South Africa for a honor's english project with almost no research. When I read an actual book about the apartheid I was pretty impressed by my accuracy. Because it's so hard to predict poverty and racism during apartheid. Child genuis, I'm telling you.

4. Stigmata and weird religious phenomena- People who manifest the wounds of Christ. Did I mention I have never been religious? I attribute this to a weekend I spent sitting in a motel room in Zion, Utah watching some miniseries about paranormal phenomena while boycotting my parent's hiking excursions.

5. Nazis and World War II- This doesn't actually qualify as an obsession, but at one point I remember playing "Barbie rescues the Jews from the concentration camp" with my best friend and this is the perfect example of why my best friend was truly the most wonderful person ever. She was probably the only person on the planet who found this entertaining besides myself.

6. Serial killers- I got a book by a profiler who interviewed all the major serial killers in the US, and actually read the whole thing, and then read even more books until I got a little weirded out by my own interest. This obsession makes no sense because even at the age of 10 I was too scared to stay in my house by myself.

7. Monty Python and the Holy Grail- When I was little my parents would say "neeh!" when they were annoyed by something. I thought that this was something they made up, or was a common expression of irritation. When I saw Monty Python and the Holy Grail (introduced by my best friend, another reason why she was heaven sent) I was astonished to discover the "Knights Who Say Neeh!". I ran home and told my parents that they weren't the only ones who said that! And they suddenly realized that I had been thinking they were crazy for most of life up until that point. I went on to memorize almost every line in the movie, including the subtitles in the begining (A moose named Erik!). It was like discovering the secret language of nerddom.

So there you go, 7 more ways I voluntarily allow myself to be embarrassed. Just....be gentle :)

*Obsessed being defined as checking out numerous books from the library that I never actually read, writing school reports full of made up information, and acting them out with barbies.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The thing is...

...when you walk by my office on most days this is what I look like.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Blacklist

One thing I have recently discovered about dog ownership is that you are very easily offended when other people criticize your dog. And by "you" I mean "me". I learned this after my dog was blacklisted.
I should explain. Hiccup, my pomeranian, is not a dog. He is part human and part cat. He does not like dogs, does not enjoy spending time with them, and does not act like a dog. It wasn't until we got Siva that we were indoctrinated into the world of being actual dog owners. Siva is a relatively large dog, especially considering that she is still a puppy and her enthusiasm tends to outweigh her training and her hearing ability. But on the whole she would not hurt a fly. If Hitler came up to her she would flop on her back and wait for him to rub her tummy. People who meet her don't even get to see her face for more than a few seconds. Instead they get to see this:


However, I have a pair of friends who have a smaller dog, one that seems to be a bit, well, "delicate". This dog is like the child with the thick glasses and the strange food allergies who isn't allowed outside because he might get too much sun. Siva and this dog enjoy playing together even though Siva now outweighs him by 40 lbs, because Siva is used to trying to play with a 7 lb ball of fluff and indignation. These friends have already decided that their dog can't play with another friends' dog, because that dog is "too hyper" and "played too rough". I thought it was kind of amusing until I got The Call.

Friend: "Ummm....Siva hurt our dog last time they played together."

Me: "What? Really? He was fine when he left the house!"

Friend: "Yeah, Siva sprained his neck. She can't play with him anymore. Or at least, not until he gets better. You can come over, but you have to leave Siva in the backyard."

I was speechless. A sprained neck? A dog with a sprained neck? I pictured him lying on the couch with one of those foam collars they give accident victims. I half expected a call from Goldberg and Osborne. And MY DOG? My dog HURT your dog? I looked at Siva who was trying to subtly crawl into my lap without me noticing, and felt a rising swell of indignation.

I admit, my reaction may be a bit over the top. But everyone I have encountered who has heard criticism of their dog has reacted with personal outrage because to criticize your dog is to criticize your dog's training, which is to criticize YOU. I don't know how parents don't routinely come to blows on the playground because if you told me my kid is playing too roughly I think I would feel obligated to punch you in the face.

Fortunately, Siva is oblivious to her owner's drama. She is perfectly content to chase her tennis ball, chew on her tail, and continue to try to play tag with Hiccup, even though he usually leaps into the air and bites her nose. And, you ask, how is the other dog doing? I couldn't tell you. He's been counter-blacklisted for emotional distress and I am considering a class-action lawsuit.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Wait, I have a blog?

Umm....hi! It's been a while, huh? Like, almost a month. Geez. It's not that I've forgotten to blog, it's just that every day that went by that I didn't blog, I would mentally tally up more stuff that I would have to add onto the "boring life update that no one cares about but that you feel obligated to write anyway", and I would decide that really procrastination is one of the few things I'm truly talented at, so I might as well go with my strengths, right? (Procrastination and run-on sentences).

Deep breath- here's the boring update:

Danny left town for a gazillion years (okay, three weeks) to help clean up Texas after Hurricane Ike. The first weekend he left I felt like my heart was ripped out of my chest and stomped on by cleat wearing hamsters (that's not a metaphor. maybe it was heart burn). So then I overloaded my social calendar to compensate, then discovered that I had days and days of school work to do, and then I spent a night watching season three of Weeds while snarfing down cheez-its like there's no tomorrow, and then he came home.

The only really exciting thing that happened occured right after he left. I had just picked myself up off the couch and decided that I wasn't going to feel sorry for myself, and that I was a strong, independent woman who can function perfectly fine on my own. Then I realized my plants needed water. I don't have a watering can, just a measuring cup, which meant that I would have to trek back and forth across the house filling up my stupid little measuring cup for each plant. So, applying my critical thinking skills, I filled a huge mixing bowl with water and began carrying that and the cup over to the plants. You know how Lassie was always getting Timmy out of trouble? My dogs do the opposite- there's nothing you can do that my dogs can't make more difficult. In this case Siva, my large and ridiculously devoted german shepherd puppy decided that she wanted her ears scratched. So she gallumphed (she has big paws and gangly legs- she's a gallumpher) over to me and planted herself in my path, causing me to skid to an abrupt halt, causing the water to slop over the side of the bowl, making me slip and land flat on my back. I lay there in a large puddle of water and it occured to me that if I hit my head and was knocked unconscious no one would find me for days. My dogs helpfully started licking the water off my face. I am just not meant to live alone.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

On Yoga

I have been going to yoga. I like yoga for a couple of reasons:
1. There are always people fatter than me in there. It's not like LA Fitness where everyone looks like they are perfectly honed machines with no sweat glands. Granted, the fact that there are always fat people in yoga class who are clearly good at yoga and have been going for years should teach me that yoga may not be the best way for me to lose weight. But at least I can feel more confident about my own ass when staring at the enormous ass of the person in front of me during downward-facing-dog.

2. It stretches muscles that I do not actually use in real life and did not know that I had until I started doing yoga. Like, I suddenly have multiple muscles in my feet that I did not know about. I now know about them because they hurt like a mother-effer.

3. At the end of every yoga class you get to lie down for 5-10 minutes and recover. This is my favorite part of the class, because if I had my way all exercise would end with an approved period of time when I get to collapse on the floor and pant like a dog. The pod people at LA Fitness look at you funny if you are lying spread-eagle next to the treadmill. Technically you are supposed to use this time to "center" yourself and all that hippy crap. I use it to keep from dying.

Things I don't like about yoga:
1. The crazy instructors. The women are all usually hairier than I would like. The men try to lift me up higher into a backbend and I'm not allowed to punch them in the face. They say things like "the word of the day is 'reflection'" and then spend the rest of the class period spouting new age pseudo-philosophical enigmatic bullshit about putting yourself fully into the moment when all I'm trying to do is keep from falling into the person next to me while I'm attempting to balance on my head with my feet in the air.

2. The yoga mats. I don't dislike this enough to have bought my own (yet), but just judging from the amount of my own sweat that has fallen on each mat, these mats have got to be disgusting.

3. The pod people who seem to have lost their way to LA Fitness and found their way to the yoga center. Again, perfect looking and not sweating. But now they are also effortlessly levitating themselves on one perfectly manicured hand. Not cool.

4. The cloud of patchouli surrounding the building. I am always astonished by people who fit so perfectly into a stereotype, and the patchouli fumes making my eyes water from the parking lot just confirm what to expect when you walk in the door.

I forgot to mention that I can now touch my toes, I think for the first time ever. That's pretty neat. So while everyone else is tied in a knot on the floor, I'm the one in the back proudly bent over, clutching my toes.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Heard at Work Today

7 year old boy: Sara! Sara! I know what I can do instead of hitting people!
Therapist: What can you do?
Boy (proudly): Throw things at them! That way I'm not touching them, the thing I'm throwing does!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

It's a Mystery

Me: Luv, why is there a pair of socks on our roof?
Him: It was an accident.
Me: But... how...???
Him (indignantly): I SAID it was an ACCIDENT!
Me: How did you accidentally get a pair of your socks on our roof?
Him: I missed.
Me: Missed what?!
Him: I was throwing them into a bucket or something and I missed.
Me: How did you miss so much that you got them on the roof?
Him: I missed REALLY HIGH alright?!


PS. We didn't win the backyard contest. Which is fine. We didn't need a water feature or a putting green. Instead we will patent the life forms that begin to crawl out of our own primordial ooze and earn millions of dollars that way. We'll show them.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Dilemma

I am on call tonight, and I'm waiting for a doctor from Northwest Hospital to call so that I can bully him into admitting one of our kiddos. I was also planning on lightening my hair tonight (I prefer the term "lightening" to "bleaching" or "coloring" don't you? It sounds more natural and less like I'm about to pour a bottle of floral scented peroxide on my head). However, I know that approximately 20 minutes after I cover my head in chemicals, right around the time I have to rinse it off or risk going bald, the crisis phone will ring and I will have to argue with a doctor over the sizzling sound of my scalp burning.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Two Things I Love

Babies and animals

About a year into my current job as a social worker I thought to myself "at least animals just eat their young. They don't torture and neglect them for 18 years and then set them loose to wreck havoc on themselves and society". This job has made me somewhat cynical. But apparently I was wrong- they take better care of our babies than we do.

But there are some stories that still give you a little hope that maybe we aren't all that bad.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Eh?

Why can't I have normal injuries? A broken arm, a ruptured appendix, a sprained ankle- all normal and easily explained. A swollen ligament in my pinky finger? Not so much. A sprained wrist as a result of running away from an angry javelina? That note from my mother went in my permanent school file because my teacher was so entertained by it. And now I am deaf in one ear. See, Danny had to take a test in Phoenix in order to get a promotion, and he got a free hotel room at the Pointe Hilton. I had that day off, so I went with him in order to partake in unlimited free cable and swimming in their luxury pool.
NOTE: This is the point in the story where ear wax comes into play. If you are grossed out by stories about ear wax, you should probably stop reading.

I, in general, do not produce much, if any, ear wax. It has never been a major concern in my life, probably falling below changing the oil in my car and dusting the baseboards in the list of things I worry about. However, once I went swimming in the luxury pool at the Hilton, this all changed. Because I woke up the next morning and I was deaf in my right ear. Totally deaf. A trifle panicked, I went to the "Minute Clinic" at the local CVS, where the lady immediately sprang into action by taking my blood pressure and my temperature. I always wonder about this- why do doctors insist on taking your blood pressure when you're there for something that has nothing remotely to do with blood pressure?

However, she finally got around to sticking that little ear examiner-thingy into my ear, and proceded to try to insert the entire thing, handle included, into my ear.
"Oh, does that hurt?" she asked. I don't know what tipped her off, except maybe for my shriek of pain and attempt to punch her in the face. Clearly pain didn't concern her, because then she tried to insert the ear examiner thingy even further into my ear. By the time she was done I felt like that kid in the Freddy Kruger movie who had the four foot long q-tip shoved through his skull. And it was at this point that she announced that swimming had caused ear wax to get stuck to my ear drum. Oh, and she could have irrigated it and fixed the problem right there, but now it was looking "irritated" and I would have to put olive oil in my ear for a few days instead. Yes, olive oil. She has mistaken my ear for pasta. I bit my tongue, resisting the impulse to remind her that it certainly wasn't irritated BEFORE she inserted a 9 inch long instrument into my ear, and that I didn't care if it was irritated I WANT TO HEAR THINGS.

This all means that for the last two days I've been having to ask people to talk into my "good" ear like I'm an 80 year old spinster who is too proud to wear a hearing aide. I refused to use olive oil, and instead bought the most toxic looking ear drops I could find at the pharmacy.

Maybe I'll have people sign my ear with get well messages like people sign casts. Maybe then I'll feel more normal.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Slime Pit

The many readers of this blog (my mother, and my father when she prints out the entries and hides them in his newspaper in the morning so that he ends up reading them thinking, in his pre-coffee haze, that the New York Times is suddenly overly preoccupied with pomeranians) have followed the saga of our house renovations. From the initial excitement of having our very own domicile, to the entertaining discoveries of tiny skulls in the rafters and multiple layers of hideous linoleum, to the self inflicted injuries, you have been there. One thing you haven’t heard about? My backyard. My hideous backyard. My bizarre backyard, with the cement pit in the center and the square dancing area (yes, I said square dancing). We have two dead trees and a lot of weeds. I’ll bet that you’ve read my accounts and thought “gosh I wish there was a way I could help Mia with her house.” Well, guess what? Your dreams can come true. You can help us with our backyard without even raising (or maiming) a finger simply by going to

http://azstarnet.upickem.net/engine/Details.aspx?PageType=APPROVED&ContestID=2112&SubmissionID=139005&IncrementNumber=1

registering to vote, then going to pag 22 and locating our submission titled "The Slime Pit" and voting for us. We could win a $30,000 makeover of our backyard, which means that we would have a pool instead of a slimy ecosystem, and an outdoor kitchen instead of a greasy barbeque grill.

So has anyone else been watching the Olympics? We have been, primarily because we don't have cable so the Olympics are really all that's on. Thus far we have seen:
Water polo- Men playing soccer in the water. We were exhausted just watching it.
Fencing- Women dressed as astronauts with swords. They screamed an inordinate amount considering they weren't actually being stabbed with swords.
Gymnastics- Men who are more flexible and have less body hair than I do.
Swimming- This was interesting for me. We watched the now famous men's 4x4 relay race when the US beat the French by something like one stroke. Now, I'm not the most patriotic person, nor am I the most competitive person. But when I heard that the leader of the French team had said "we are here to smash the Americans" I found myself screaming at the TV like a full blooded Texan. I even referred to the French team as "frenchies". As in, "you show those smug frenchies!" And I laughed in glee as the French person bowed his head and cried. I felt like I was in an Olympic Visa commercial, high fiving my husband and bursting with feel-good US of A bloodthirsty competiveness.

And just think- in four years, if we win that backyard contest, I could be lying in a pool, eating a big bloody steak cooked in our outdoor kitchen, drinking a margarita, and cheering on our Olympic team in true American style. I will even be wearing a flag themed bikini, and possibly a cowboy hat. But only if you vote :)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Should Have Stayed in Bed

Yesterday kind of sucked. It started with a battle with Cricket (the cellphone people) and ended with Danny having to pull yet another person out of an overturned vehicle (no, not me. No, we weren't in a car accident. )

Since we now live out in the boonies there is no cable service, and thus, no internets. Satellite is crazy expensive, so we've been looking into using a cellphone service for wireless internet, and decided to give Cricket a try. As we were driving to the store Danny told me that they have armed security guards there.
Me: Why??
Danny: Because of the fights that break out. And people trying to attack the salespeople.
Me: Geez, I've gotten mad at my cellphone company in the past, but that's just silly.

We show up, and sure enough there's an armed guard. We buy our modem, are reassured "5 easy steps to install. Super easy." and drive home.

And then the fun ensues.

The program won't recognize that we've inserted the modem into the USB port. I call the help line.
Automated menu: Please enter the phone number for the modem.
Me: What phone number? There's no phone number!
Danny: Try the account number
Me: Enters account number
Automated menu: Wrong.
Me, pushing random options until I get to a human.
Human: I need the phone number for the modem.
Me: There's no phone number!
Human: It's the number on your receipt that looks like a phone number.
Me: There's. No. Phone. Number.
Human: Oh, well I can't help you without the phone number.

I call the store.
Me: The program doesn't recognize the modem, called help desk, need phone number for modem please.
Salesperson: Did you put the CD into the computer?
Me: Yes.
Salesperson: So, click the little picture of the modem on the computer to open the program.
Me: I have done all that. I will call the help line, but I need the phone number.
Salesperson: You don't have the phone number?
Me: No.
Salesperson: It's the number on your receipt. The phone number.
Me: There's no phone number on my receipt.
Salesperson: There should be.
Me: THERE'S NO PHONE NUMBER ON MY RECEIPT!
Salesperson, muffled, talking to other incompetant salesperson: Dude! You have to put the phone number on the receipt! *Arguing continues for ten minutes while I wait*
Salesperson: Okay, here's the phone number.

Calling the help desk, and confidently entering the phone number.
Automated menu: That number is not valid.
I begin the random button pushing and get to a human. She fortunately, is very nice. Unfortunately, after an hour of starting, shutting down, restarting, shutting down, and cussing, we realize that it cannot work on our computer.

We return the modem.
Danny: We need to return this modem. It doesn't work on our computer.
Salesperson: Really?
Danny: Yes.
Salesperson calls over other salesperson. They plug it into their computer. It works.
Salesperson: It works.
Danny: Yes, on your computer. But not on our computer. We need to return it.
Salesperson: Did you put the CD in the computer?
Danny: Yes.
Salesperson 2: Hey! Look up that Youtube video I was telling you about!
Salesperson 1: Dude! Sweet!
They spend ten minutes watching a youtube video on our modem. Other salespeople come over to watch it. When it's done, the salesperson returns.
Salesperson: It works on our computer.
Danny: It does not work on our computer. It is of no use to us. We need to return this modem.
Salesperson: Did you put the CD in the computer?
Me: I'm begining to understand the need for the security guards.

Plus, on the way to the store, already fuming about the modem, the two people in front of us get into a car accident and one of the cars flips over. The other one takes off. Danny and some other guys have to pull the woman, covered in blood, out of the car. This is the second time he has had to do this- when I got into a car accident last year he had to pull the woman and her child from the other car out as well. He's getting good at it. I sit with her and try to keep pressure on her hand which has a huge gash in it, while Danny pours water on the car, which has started to smoke. Meanwhile the other car that took off apparently ran into a second car, parked, and the guy ran off. But someone got his license plate number, thank goodness.

All in all, a very bizarre and crappy day. But it did remind me that while I may still not have access to the internet, at least I'm alive.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Pup and Circumstance

Guess who graduated from begining obedience school today! It was a stressful final exam- we had a scavenger hunt around the store and had to have Siva do her various commands that she learned at each stop. I wasn't expecting to get worked up over it, but Danny and I both suddenly became very competitive, mainly because we couldn't let the twitchy chihuahua win the prize over our brilliant puppy. So there we were, both sweating and clutching pieces of hotdog, saying "Sit! Sit! Sit!" in increasingly shrill and desperate voices. Siva wanted none of it. She didn't like our treats, she didn't want to sit, and she didn't like being dragged away from every interesting smell she encountered in the store. Eventually we finished, and split the prize between us and the chihuahua. We were all exhausted.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Dark Night

We braved the crowds to see Dark Night (wait, is it dark knight? dark night? crap. I'm a moron.) on opening day yesterday. It wasn't actually as insane getting in as we were expecting. Even though there were seemingly thousands of people in line ahead of us, Zac and Danny's plan to charge the suited manager guarding the door, and Teresa and my plan of crying and talking about our periods/imminent pregnancies went unneeded.

To my disappointment, there was only one kook dressed up like Batman in the theater. When I saw the first Star Wars in the theatre a forty year old Luke Skywalker was having a light saber battle with a five year old Darth Vader before the movie. All of the previews looked pretty entertaining, except for the movie adaptation "of the best graphic novel ever in the history of everything" by the dude who did the last movie adaptation of the other "best graphic novel in the history of everything". That preview involved stylized shots of hot women with quasi-seductive but generally just bizarre sounding stripper names (Silken Floss??? Sounds like a thong that doubles as a dental hygiene device) saying dirty double entendres in artificially seductive voices. Danny and Zac were, needless to say, already making plans to go see that one.

The movie was excellent. I am generally impatient of 2 1/2 hour long movies because generally it just means the director was too conceited to edit his work, but in this case it totally needed to be as long as it was. Not surprisingly it was a very, umm, "dark" movie, but had enough humor to keep you from getting totally overwhelmed. Heath Ledger did an amazing job. Amazing. I would be saying that even if he hadn't died. He was creepy and funny and weirdly likable but totally fucked up. And the make-up artist who did his face should win an Oscar too.

The only two issues I had with the movie were with Christian Bale and Maggie Gyllenhal (or however it's spelled). Now, Christian Bale is yummy, I am the first to admit it. I swooned all through Captain Corelli's Mandolin, with the ridiculous plot and Nick Cage's laughably ridiculous Italian accent all because of Christian Bale with a full beard. I think he was even a bad guy and ends up raping someone, or killing someone, or kicking a puppy, but it didn't matter. Shirtless and bearded? I'm done. But there's something about the lower half of Bale's face that bothers me (hence the beard requirement). It's a little too anal retentive looking, or too prissy, or trying to hard. And in Batman you generally only get to see the lower half of his face under the Bat Mask, which is truly a shame. And his Bat Man voice is awful. It's like a caricature of a tormented super hero voice- all gravely and deep, but slightly nasal like he can't breath very well under the Bat Mask. It was very distracting.

My problem with Maggie was two-fold. She had dark circles under her eyes which made her look like she was an overworked housewife, rather than the beautiful childhood love of Bruce Wayne. And she never really got upset in the movie, just exasperated. Your fiance is going to jail? Your childhood love may be giving up being Batman for you? Pretty much everyone in Gotham City is being killed by a deranged clown? All she could manage was a disappointed frown and a furrowed brow. Even when SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT she was about to die it seemed more like she had discovered an accident on her rug by her new puppy. Irritated, but not the end of the world.

Other than that, excellent. I give it two thumbs up. And there was a preview for the next Terminator movie with Christian Bale, and guess what? Bearded. I'm so there.

EDIT: It's Knight. Durrr.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Why I Need To Hire a Butler Whose Sole Purpose Is To Deliver Me Coffee In Bed to Prevent Me From Causing Grievous Harm to Myself Or Others

10 am: Wake up
10:15 am: Put bagel in toaster
10:30 am: Realize toaster is not turned on.
10:40 am: Realize house is filled with smoke and bagel is black.
10:50 am: After airing out house, put new bagel in toaster
11:10: Realize house is filled with smoke, and second bagel is black.
11:20: Drive to Starbucks before more damage is done.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Prepare for Mush


With all of my kvetching about being an old married woman, I am continually reminded of all of the reasons my husband is an amazing person, and the perfect person for me. Thus


Reasons Why I Love My Husband *gag*


1. He has the same juvenile sense of humor I do, and if I say something outrageously politically incorrect he will laugh.


2. As soon as I begin to fume about something that he has/has not done he will somehow sense it, and I will come home to a home cooked dinner and a clean house.


3. Whenever I get up in the middle of the night he asks if I'm okay


4. He will get up early to take my parents to the airport so that I don't have to.


5. He gets me flowers "just because" and always tries to get me my favorite kind.


6. Periodically he will say something that proves that he is actually listening when I talk about work.


7. When I first met him I was in the process of an extremely messy break-up with a very nasty person. Danny put up with my indecisiveness, generally freaking out-ness, and abuse from the nasty ex.


8. He told me that a relationship should be fun, and shouldn't be work. While all relationships are work, he proved to me that it should be mutual, and should be outweighed by fun.


9. He does everything he can to make my life less stressful, which is challenging because I get stressed out by almost everything.


10. He encourages me to be independent and to have my own interests and friends.


11. He can fix or build anything. Literally. Nuclear reactor? No problem. Currently he's planning on an invisible edge pool and an elevated deck for our house.


12. He has gone from refusing to eat anything unusual to willingly going to an Afghani restaurant with me. If I could only get him to eat seafood....


He is the steady rock that keeps me from flying off into space, the one who puts things in perspective and keeps me as sane as I can conceivably be. Being married isn't that bad. Being married to him is the best thing I could have done.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Alter Ego

I've had a secret desire for a while...one that frightens me, and yet thrills me at the same time.

I want to join the Tucson Roller Derby. I want to be a Derby Girl.

I went to one of their matches a while ago, and was captivated. Maybe it was the nachos, the beer swilling crowd, or the idea of skating around a rink wearing an adorable kickass outfit to hoardes of cheering fans holding posters of my derby alter-ego name. Whatever it was, I was hooked.

Until I went to the next match and saw a girl get punched in the face. I've never been punched in the face, and I'm pretty sure I would cry if I did. And then I logged on to their website and saw pictures of grinning, bloodied faces and enormous swollen bruises.

I am not a competitive person. At least, not physically. Put me in a battle of wits and I will beat you to the ground with my mind, or if I'm losing I will at least cuss you out vociferously. But I still have flashbacks of PE classes...we did those relay races where each person on the team had to run down the court, shoot a basket, and then run back and pass the ball to the next person. You know how there was always that one sad kid standing miserably under the basket, desperately heaving the ball at the basket and watching it fly off into space, nowhere near the net while everyone on all the other teams sit at the other end of the court muttering epithets? That sad kid was me. My parents had to have a conference with the PE teacher because of my overwhelming kickball related anxiety. When I found out we were going to be playing softball in middle school I didn't sleep for a week.

But recently I've been having the urge to join a sports team. Initially it was the company softball team, but I can't throw, catch, or bat so I don't think I'd be much of an asset. But roller derby? When I was a kid I literally spent whole summers rollerblading. Rollerblading in a circle which is essentially what roller derby is. That, and pushing other girls. I have a bit of an edge in that too- I have a much larger, stronger husband who I regularly try to tackle to the ground. Granted, I don't think you are allowed to bite your opponents in roller derby, but still.

Plus, with roller derby you have an alter ego. You get a clever double entendre name that you go by. It's like being a superhero!

Anyway, they have a meet and greet coming up, and I'm going to go. I think.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Happy Am-ur-ca Day!

I've noticed that "Dubya" Bush pronounces America in the above fashion. It's truly charming, the idea that the president of our country can't actually pronounce it.

Our 4th was low key, but entertaining. We were planning on driving up to Phoenix and re-celebrating our one year anniversary, but my friend Jenny decided to come into town unexpectedly. So, we played host for the weekend. It was fun having her, but she's gotten a wee bit OCD since the last time I saw her. Before she drove down she announced to us, "make sure you clean the bathroom". My own mother knows not to say this to me, because it means that she will be spending her weekend peeing in the bushes or staying in a hotel. Danny quickly hung up the phone before she could hear the epithets being screamed in the background. On Saturday Jenny decided that our clean bathroom was not actually clean enough, and spent four hours scrubbing it with clorox. I found it insulting, but Danny physically restrained me in another room because he is all about the free labor.

Thursday night we stayed home and, well, drank. Actually Danny and our friend Jaime drank. An entire bottle of tequila. Jaime is a big beer drinker, but put some actual liquor in front of him and he passes out after his second martini. In this case he began screaming beligerantly, and then curled up like a baby on our couch. The next morning we took him out for breakfast, and showed him pictures of the penis we drew on his forehead when he was passed out. The penis that was still on his forehead in the restaurant. Jaime has since quit drinking.

On the fourth we had Dos de Azucar and Batman over, along with Danny's life partner, Phill. We had some margaritas and decided to build a bonfire in our empty koi pond/hot tub. We disposed of some old wooden doors and a dead tree from the backyard, then enjoyed the inferno. I also had a rave of one to that old nineties pseudo-techno song "Blue" by Eiffel 65. That was my favorite song in high school with the exception of the "We Like To Party" song, which was my theme song. Yeah for itunes and the ability to download crappy songs that you loved in tenth grade.

Saturday we did what has apparently become a Saturday tradition for us: going to Cup Cafe at Club Congress for a late dinner and cocktails, then on to the World Famous Golden Nugget for shuffleboard. This time we played against some very effeminate Hispanic guys who were much better players than I was, and more tolerant of my cussing them out than the last group. I failed to mention last time that across from the World Famous Golden Nugget is some store that has handpainted signs on the side entrance: "Look! We've caught you on camera now!" I'm not sure who they were catching, but so far they've been mooned by myself, Phill and Jaime twice. And hopefully the gay Mexicans if they listened to my instructions as we were leaving the bar Saturday night.

Sheila

Names people call our dog because apparently "Siva" (SEEE-VAAA) is too difficult:
Shiva
Seeba
Sheba
Sihva
Sihba
Sheila

I haven't heard She-Ra yet, but I will shake that person's hand when I do.

We have been taking Siva (Sheba, Sheila, etc) to obedience school led by a passive aggressive puppy-nazi. Now, I realize that dog owners can be a little hyper-sensitive about criticism of their doggy parenting style, but this woman would ruffle anyone's feathers.

Our first day I mentioned that Siva was an outdoor dog. An outdoor dog when we are not home. As in, I don't keep my 45 lb puppy locked in a crate during the day when we have a large backyard she can run around in. The puppy-nazi blinked at me (she has a bizarre way of blinking very emphatically. I keep feeling like offering her eye drops) and gave me a lecture about how "outdoor dogs" never get enough attention. She painted a heart rending picture of Siva sitting at the backdoor, silently weeping as we frolic just out of her reach inside the house. My proverbial hackles started to rise, because Siva has an air conditioned dog house and a kiddie pool just for her in the backyard, and most of the time if we are in the house she is standing in her pool trying to catch imaginary fish. When she's not inside. With us.

For the next several sessions she managed to work in mentions of the plight of "outdoor dogs" in each lesson. Barking problem? Can't be fixed if she's an outdoor dog, because she's constantly distracted by the "traffic" she sees in the yard. Except we have two acres and the only traffic Siva sees are the lizards walking along the back wall. Housetraining problem? Can't be fixed if she's an outdoor dog because we can't monitor her when she pees.

Unfortunately Siva is the most well behaved and the smartest dog in the class. Our other classmates are a father and son team with an old and giant shepherd who spends the entire class period trying to eat Siva, and a mother-daughter team with a terrified chihuahua who doesn't do anything but tremble and look petrified. This meant that after the first few class periods the puppy-nazi couldn't deny that she was a healthy, well behaved dog despite the fact that her owners are neglectful bastards.

The irritating thing is that I'm always very polite, even when it's through gritted teeth. However, Danny and I like to call the daughter of the chihuahua owner Slutty McBitcherson (or Bitchy McSlutterson). Her wardrobe of choice are Britney style shorts that are so short the pockets hang out, a black lingerie style tank top, and a hot pink bra hanging out the top. And she's 13. She spends most of the class inflicting that particular brand of middle school angst that makes everyone want to separate the 13 and 14 year olds onto an island until they finish puberty:
Mother: Sit, doggy.
SMcB: That is not how you SAY it!! God! You're soooo dumb!

Because of this hopeful turn of events the puppy-nazi has decided that maybe we aren't the pond scum she originally took us for. So she treats me to stories about her therapy dog, who she routinely describes as being the dumbest dog on the planet.

PupNaz: Now I'll bring Penny out to show you how to do this next command. Although Penny's really bad at it. She's really kind of dumb, actually"
Yesterday she tried to show me how she could get her dog to "shake" by staring at her. What followed was ten minutes of watching her blink emphatically at her dog while the dog stared back at her, clueless. What Penny is good at is looking at her trainer empathetically while her trainer makes passive aggressive complaints:
PupNaz: No one showed up last week for class.
Me: I'm so sorry, with the holiday we totally forgot.
PupNaz: That's okay. Everyone was on vacation. But I don't get any vacations do I Penny?
Penny: Stares at her sympathetically and waits for treats
Me: Swallows a mouthful of bile and grits teeth to nubs.

But Siva has learned "sit", "stay", and a variety of other useful things. And she loves the class. She gets treats constantly for an hour and then all the employees at the store descend on her and rub her tummy. She's like the Paris Hilton of Petsmart. If Paris Hilton liked tummy rubs.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Belated Addendum to the Camping Post

Remember when I went camping back in May? I finally found the pictures on Danny's laptop today, so I thought I'd do a visual re-cap of our fun wilderness experience:

This is what we started out with that morning: lots and lots of snow. Fortunately, we found a campsite without snow, and began to set up the Martinez Camping Compound. And the boys began doing manly activities:




Danny spent two hours trying to put up an enormous tarp by hoisting children into pine trees and making them tie the rope around the tree. The wind was so strong that at one point the tarp took flight and lifted Danny off the ground.




All that set up made them tired. So they cracked their first beers at about 11am. Phill didn't move for the rest of the day.

The infamous Cheesy Poofs in all their glory. Yes, I already ate a bunch on the drive up. Shut up.
One of the best parts of the trip was watching Siva discover snow. I threw snowballs for her and she would plunge through the drifts trying to find them. She's turning into a beautiful dog:








Taking Back The Night

I regained my youth, people. I grabbed youth by it's silky straight hair and slammed it to the ground! During my youth bitch-slap I realized that it wasn't a matter of me being old, it was a matter of me being boring and bored. That's not being old, just stupid. And my angst might have been a bit of PMS too. Don't you hate that?? You spend a couple of days feeling like your life sucks and everything is really going down the drain and you start contemplating major life changes, and then one morning you wake up and you're like "Oh. It was hormones. Whoops."

But back to my weekend. It was a normal weekend for most people, and used to be a normal weekend for me until we bought the time-and-money-blackhole known as our house. So, Friday I went out with my wonderful friend Dos de Azucar (what does that mean, anyway? Two somethings of sugar?) and we had dinner at the trendy new taco and tequila bar. I had the best margarita ever, a blood orange margarita. I had to physically restrain myself from getting another one. Then we walked around and laughed (and quietly envied) the overpriced clothes at La Encantada. I almost bought a $50 pair of sweatpants because they had pretty embroidery on them, but where can you wear fancy sweatpants? Not to the gym or when working on the house, because you would ruin them. Not to work, because they're still sweatpants. It's a conundrum I couldn't resolve.

Then I took Siva to the park with my friend Rachel and her kids. I love her kids. They think I'm crazy and refer to me as "the loud friend". But they like me because I make fun of their mom. Siva spent the entire time trying to position herself in front of people so she could flop on her back and get tummy rubs. She isn't making much progress as a guard dog.

I went out with the boys (husband, husband's life partner, husband's friend) and went bar hopping. The twilight zone moment happened at a dive bar when I looked up and saw Danny's full name written on the wall. So either he was so drunk one evening that he doesn't remember somehow getting his name 8 feet up on a wall, or the other Danny Z (there's another in Tucson) goes to the same bar we do. How awesome/spooky is that?

We also went to The World Famous Golden Nugget, and it's the best bar ever because it has a pinball machine AND shuffleboard AND crazy chicks who come up and talk to you for an hour about your astrological sign. The second spooky thing? Even after I sobered up she made sense.

I've decided that shuffleboard is my sport. Why? You can drink while playing it, you are actually a better player if you use less physical effort, and the rules are super simple. Shuffleboard rocks.

The other highlight was that we introduced our hardcore beer drinking friend to martinis, and he was sweating and slurring after one. Take that beer!

All in all, we didn't get home until 3am. I was so proud of myself.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Mawwaige

(Title to be said in the Princess Bride wedding ceremony voice)

My last blog was a little bleak, wasn't it? I think that just by reading about the quarter life crisis I managed to put myself into one, because before that I was actually pretty content with my life. Or maybe it's the fact that I keep reading reviews of the Sex and the City movie, and everyone concludes that it's such a depressing ending because everyone gets old and married. It's all, like, realistic and stuff. Geez.

To top off my contented life, I got into a fight with my husband today. We don't fight a lot. Not to say that I don't try, because picking fights over meaningless things is really my forte in life. However, since my mild mannered partner in matrimony informed me a few weeks ago that he was the husbandly equivalent of a citizen of Pompeii constantly waiting for Mt. Visuvius to erupt, I've been trying to be, well, nicer. A little less explosive. This lasted about two weeks, which is good for me. And I still contend (not out loud at home, but here in the safe haven of my blog where I am always good, nice, and most importantly, right) that this fight was not my fault. I have spent the last two weekends on my hands and knees scrubbing grout, an activity that is just about as fun for me as doing long division. So when I looked up and found my charming mate sitting on the couch watching Smokey and the Bandit, I merely suggested that he could, you know, work.

Granted, he had been working and was taking a break. Whatever. I didn't say it meanly, I just offered him a couple of items on our To Do list that needed to be completed. Hurtful words were exchanged, and I ended up storming out of the house and driving around the back roads of Tucson for two hours, fantasizing about driving to San Diego for a week and seeing how long it would take him to worry about me. By the time I returned to the house I was calmer, but had a list of very well thought out reasons why I was in the right. In the midst of fine tuning this list I noticed he had taken out the garbage. And scrubbed the grout in the bathroom. And grouted the empty spots in the kitchen. We hugged and I said "I'm sorry I hurt your feelings". Then I waited graciously for his own apology. It never came. "It's okay" he says. I wait another couple of beats, just to be sure. I contemplated prompting him, asking him, or pinching his ear lobe until he begged for mercy. I calculated how much gas it would take me to get to San Diego.

But then I thought about all the stuff he had done while I was gone, and how if I had been him I would have sulked around and defiantly not done any work. I would have probably laid in the middle of the living room floor just to prove that I wasn't going to do any work. But Danny is Danny, and he picked up the scrub brush I had thrown in a rage and tackled the shower. I decided that was enough apology for me.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Where's My Metamucil!

I've been feeling old. We did a class exercise a few days ago, and discussed the pro's and con's of each decade from people in their 20's to people in their 50's. What was interesting to me was that the people who were already out of their twenties were talking about how in your twenties you party all the time, have no responsibilities, can eat whatever you want without gaining weight, don't have any health problems, and generally have wonderful, care-free lives. I also joined a "twenty-something" bloggers group, and most of the blogs I've been reading are by people who seem to have these carefree lives described by my classmates. Frankly, I think I belong in the 30 or 40-something group. Instead of drinking to excess with my fabulous friends and dry humping some guy on a dance floor in 5 inch painless stilleto heels, I spent the weekend doing the following:
1. Painting the exterior of the house
2. Scrubbing and then sealing the grout
3. Sleeping and whining about how tired I was after doing numbers 1 and 2.

Granted, I had my fair share of drunken debauchery in college. Nights spent passed out on a friends floor, waking up covered in obscene scribblings written by my more sober friends. Mornings spent in hungover misery with my roommates. The ninja-like theft of a shopping cart from the UA campus. But really, those years were pretty tame in comparison to most other people. I made it all four years without going to a single frat party, I never got arrested, I never even got in trouble with the RA's. I was only single for a semester in between my high school sweetheart and my future husband, and I didn't have a single one night stand. I never even got a speeding ticket.

At the age of 26 I am a married home owner with two dogs. I definitely can't eat whatever I want, and in fact even when I subsist only on salads and water I still can't lose weight. I get tired by 11pm, even on weekends. I have a real job that takes an emotional toll on my personal life. I prefer wine to shots. The guy who brings me home from the bar is my husband, and usually instead of having drunken monkey sex afterwards, I fall asleep and drool on him. I groan when I get up after sitting too long, just like my parents.

I wonder if I've missed out on an important period of irresponsibility and delicious recklessness, or if I am really just happier being old and boring. Maybe my wild and crazy days will happen when my future kids are off to college, and I'll start bar hopping. But shouldn't those days happen when you're young and can still wear a mini-skirt without being laughed at? Who am I kidding, I already have cellulite.

Sometimes, I think longingly about high school and kick myself for having two long term boyfriends and being a responsible student. I should have been out playing the field, because I just found my senior pictures and dude, I was hot. I gotta say. I weighed like 100 pounds and could eat whatever I wanted. I should have been ditching class and making out with hot seniors behind the bleachers. While eating my weight in nachos. Why? Because I could.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Goodbye Brain

I spent most of yesterday trying to scrub several years of accumulated dirt out of the grout in the living room with clorox. That is, until the room started spinning and I couldn't stand up anymore. Danny found me face down on the bed and I still smell clorox every time I inhale so today I purchased actual grout cleanser which promised to be non-toxic. Unfortunately, it's too late for a few of my neurons which I'm pretty sure are toast. On the plus side I figured out exactly which ones I lost this morning during a discussion about a high school friend of mine and her pronunciation difficulties.

Me: I had a friend who couldn't say the word "wolf". She would say "woof" instead.
Danny: Woof?
Me: Right. Isn't that funny? And instead of saying "wolfs" she would say "woofs".
Danny: Wait, instead of what?
Me: Wolfs.
Danny: It's wolves. WOLVVVVES. You're making fun of your friend and you can't even say it yourself?
Me: Oh my god. I knew that yesterday.

So, the brain cells that knew the plural of wolf have bitten the dust. All in all, it could be worse. As long as I don't move to Alaska. With the wolfs.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Joys of Not Being 13

This weekend I spent most of the weekend being grateful that I am not 13. Because, at 13, if my father had spent the weekend striding around Tucson with me in this hat:

I would have died. Not figuratively. I would have hurled myself off of the nearest structure, or started swallowing the contents of my purse in the hopes that it would kill me. As you probably surmised my parents were here this weekend. My parents, and this hat. Every time we left the house: "oh! I forgot my hat!" Anytime I complained of the heat: "would you like to wear my hat?" If he saw me putting on sunglasses: "I don't need sunglasses, I have my hat!" At one point he was wearing baggy cargo shorts half hanging off of him (he's lost weight, but lord knows he couldn't use that as an opportunity to update his wardrobe) a demin looking cargo shirt (yes, they make cargo shirts. By "they" I mean minions of Satan) that was not actually denim but some space-age technologically advanced fabric (did I mention the shirt was unbuttoned??) thick hiking socks pulled all the way up, and his fabulous hat. Women were swooning in every direction.



As it was, I was able to laugh it off. At one point I even tried on the hat in public. I made sure that I was laughing while trying it on to prevent anyone from thinking that I had actually spent my own money on this combination sun bonnet-Lawrence of Arabia turban-Australian bush hat. But at 13 you would have found me under the table of the restaurant wearing dark sunglasses and reading a guide to emancipation of minors.



I should mention that he also had the audacity to mock my purchase of some tasteful plaid capris from Express. They are very cute and fashionable, even though my mother, father, and husband made simultaneous gagging noises when I brought them out.

Cute, right? I thought so. I'll bet if they a 20 pockets, zip off legs, 35 straps and a matching headlight he would probably wear them himself.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Cheesy Poof Update

I had a few left, I just ate a couple. They tasted nasty. Apparently they are only good on road trips, which is definitely a good thing, because otherwise I'd weigh 500 lbs.

Also, I've updated my link list to include:

Sweetney- the owner of the most entertaining and aptly named pug- Truman. Hopefully, not the same one who peed on my cheesy poofs. Then we'd have to throw down.

Amalah- has the most adorable son ever, and gives fabulous make up advice.

Finslippy- tireless conversations with her son that sound a lot like the conversations I have with my "kids" (ie- clients). "AND THEN NEMO JUMPED OVER SPONGE BOB AND WENT PSSSSHSSBBBBBTH"

Klick-Here- one of my friends from high school! Also married. Also has cats, but not as evil as ours.

Fussy- creator of "yoga beans", where action figures do yoga. If I had action figures lying around...no, I can't lie. I'd never come up with that myself.

Tartraz- I randomly stalked her through Klick-Here, and she is hysterical. The most dedicated at weekly features I have ever seen.

Squirrel Legs

We went camping recently with Danny's family to celebrate his birthday. The day before we left a cold front moved into Tucson and the previously beautiful weather became cold and windy, and by the time we got to Show Low there was 13 inches of snow the ground. I refuse to camp in snow. I have camped in rain, wind, on rocks, surrounded by cows that sound like bears in the middle of the night, and in a tent with my mother who insisted on peeing into a pot instead of going outside in the middle of the night. I will not camp in snow. So I stated, vociferously, that I. Would. Not. Camp. In. Snow. Instead? We smuggled 13 people and two dogs into two second floor hotel rooms. I stayed in the room and would hurl my body on top of Hiccup whenever anyone entered the room in order to prevent him from barking. As it was, I'm sure several people caught the glimpse of a long german shepherd nose peeking into the hallway and myself suspended, Matrix-style, in the air above a furious pomeranian preparing to defend his room. Danny was smart and stayed next door drinking tequila with his family.

However by the next day the sun came out and we headed to the mountains. The next two days were filled with fish, camp fires, and cheese poofs. Oh, the cheese poofs. Every road trip we take, I have to buy a bag of delicious cheese poofs to consume on the ride. This year Danny purchased the largest quantity of cheese poofs I have ever seen at Sam's Club. We calculated that I could eat only cheese poofs for three whole days and STILL be consuming enough calories to make me obese. It was heaven. Unfortunately, people began competing for the cheese poofs, especially when we started playing "pass the bottle of tequila around the fire" (It's a complicated game. You drink tequila and pass the bottle. Then you end up lying half inside your tent threatening your dog that you'll "break his little squirrel legs" if he doesn't stop walking on your face). By the end of the weekend, people were deliberately consuming my cheese poofs to annoy me. At least, until the pug from the campsite next door came over and peed on the canister. Then they were all mine! On the last day we began duct-taping small, eager children to trees to "test their survival skills". Their revenge? Duct-taping the cheesy poofs. Oh, the horror.

The weekend was a lovely escape from the never ending renovations, despite the fact that my hair still smells of smoke even though it's been a week.

Best Character Assessment I've Gotten in a While

Danny and I were in Circle K today and a homeless looking guy came up to him:
Homeless Guy: She's got some red in that hair. Watch out! She might beat you to death!
Danny, turning to me: This guy has met you before, hasn't he.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

10 We-ahd Things You Don't Know About Me

...According to my husband:

I was tagged by Jenny (I do not know how link to her blog) to write ten weird things people don't know about me. And whenever I say the word weird in my head I say it "we-ahd" like my little cousin in law who can't say his r's. I don't know why, I just do. Maybe that's number one. Anyway, because I generally am not even aware of the odd things that I do, this list will be composed by my husband, as he is the first person to call my awareness to, and then laugh at, my we-ahdness.
1. "You do the pee-pee dance when you're bored or you think no one is looking". Yes, I do. I jiggle my knees and bounce up and down without thinking about it. No, I usually don't have to pee when I do this.
2. "You people watch so much sometimes you walk into things." People fascinate me. And I like to analyze their character based on their choice of outfit that day. Then I run into a wall.
......and that's all he could think of. Granted, he's working on the brakes to his truck and not focusing on me like he should be, but still. I'm weirder than that. I will continue with my own list:
3. I hiccup multiple times every day and have so since I was in my mother's womb. Usually after eating.
4. I have tourette's syndrom, but only in my head. I think of horrible sexist, racist, insulting, vulgar things to say in response to commercials on TV.
5. I hate the feeling of water drying on my skin. Danny tortures me by licking my skin and then blowing air on the saliva. One of those gross things they don't tell you really constitutes a marriage.
6. When hungover the only food I will eat is a sourdough jack from jack in the box with no ketchup and no bacon. If they mess up the order I won't eat it.
7. I'd rather drive a beat up old car than my current mercedes so I don't have to worry about taking care of it.
8. I can't walk over grates or bridges that I can see the ground through. Yes, just like a cow.
9. When I'm really, really tired I feel like sucking my thumb. One time I tried it just to see if it would be comforting and it felt strange.
10. I get random words stuck in my head and repeat them over and over in my head. Or phrases. I can get songs stuck in my head for days at a time. One time I had "Love Shack" stuck in my head for a week. I'm still paranoid about hearing that song.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

And This Little Piggy Came Home


Yesterday we went for a walk in the desert around the neighborhood with the dogs. We looked at all the cacti in bloom, admired the birds and rabbits, and generally marveled at our good fortune.

Then, as we lay snug in our beds, content in the serenity that comes with living in the middle of nowhere, someone knocked on our door. At 3am. Not an angry knock, a relatively polite knock, but still alarming considering the time of day. Of course I am the only one who hears the knock. Our trusty 7 lb watchdog, whose only useful function is the fact that he barks when someone knocks on the door, did nothing. I think my husband was slightly excited at this opportunity because he got to stride to the door, cock his huge pistol, and defend his property. He says he heard something or someone scurrying away from the door, but that it didn't sound human. We then lay quivering in bed, debating the animal who makes knocking noises vs. deranged axe murder who makes knocking noises. Meanwhile, the cat was busy making every possible "I'm breaking into your house" sound she could think of: thumps, scratching noises like a lock pick, crashing sounds, etc. And Siva, excited by the possibility that we might play with her in the middle of the night, starting throwing things around in the backyard. Every time one of our charming animals did something, we would lie perfectly still, and then analyze the acoustic properties of the sound:
Mia: That sounded like Siva throwing her water dish.
Danny: Or someone shaking the back door. It sounded metallic.
Mia: No, metal is higher pitched. That was a "thunk" like plastic.

And so on. Needless to say we didn't get much sleep. Today, I go to work and talk to one of my co-workers about our early morning adventure. And she says, and I quote:
"Dude! It's the pigs!"
.....huh? Apparently, her tia lives in the neighborhood and she used to think someone was harrassing her in the middle of the night. Turns out the javelina were going up to her front door and crashing into it with their tusks because they don't have good eyesight. As I thought about it, it made sense. Our trash cans are right by the front door, and are overflowing because we haven't been able to get our trash service set up. Danny heard a scurrying, not a running. And Hiccup simply slept through the whole thing, probably exhausted by having to fend off Siva all day.

Our first desert adventure....we're in for some sleepless nights.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Summer Resolutions

It's the beginning of summer, and I'm getting that feeling I get every summer. The feeling that I will have time in the next three months to catch up on the resolutions that I slacked off on from January until May. But this summer I'm taking two classes and I have a house to finish and unpack. But I'm hoping that I can downsize some of our stuff, and finally make sure that everything has a place. I decided we have way too many little things floating around when I had to label a THIRD box as "junk drawer". When every drawer is a junk drawer you have a problem.

I know all of my readers (Mom, Teresa and Zac) (no, my husband and my father don't read my blog regularly) (yes this is a passive-aggressive way of trying to make them feel guilty if they ever do read my blog) are concerned about the state of my pinky finger. It's been a wild ride, I tell ya.

I went to see the specialist, who was a lovely man despite being only 5 feet tall and slightly crossed eyes. He looked at my finger for about thirty seconds, and said confidently "I can fix this". Then he gets a needle that's about as long as he is tall and jams it in my palm. Apparently, despite refusing to ever own, fire or even touch a gun, I gave myself "trigger finger" which necessitated injecting cortisone into the tendon. My hand began to swell like a balloon as the cortisone went in, and he merrily tried to chat with me about grad school as I tried not to howl like a baboon on fire. Afterwards, he did his best to make me feel really happy I'm a social worker.

Doctor: So, you're a social worker?
Me: Yep.
Doctor: They don't make much money, huh?
Me: Nope, not really
Doctor: I know a social worker. She barely makes enough to live on.
Me: That's too bad.
Doctor: Yeah, and that's in Phoenix. It's probably even worse here!
Me: I guess....
Doctor: I always tell her "you might as well be working for free!" hehehe.
Me: Well, it's not that bad...
Doctor: Yep, working for free. She might as well just be a volunteer.
Me: Seriously...
Doctor: I mean, she lives by herself and can barely pay the bills! What if you have kids?!
Me: So...can I go pay my copay now and you can bill my insurance company $1,000 for my 30 second evaluation?

My finger started getting better almost immediately, but it wasn't done punishing me yet. Oh, no. After I was able to bend it again I could take off the tape I'd been wearing. At first my finger was itchy, but I figured that was normal. Then, the skin start peeling off, and getting all red and gross. I ignored it, hoping it would go away. Clearly, I didn't learn much of a lesson from waiting a month to get the whole "trigger finger" thing looked at. But Danny noticed my angry, mutant finger after a few days, and announced that he was diagnosing me with athlete's foot. On my finger. If you are silently gagging a little bit right now, don't be ashamed. I did to, and it was my appendage. It made sense, though. Not a lot of air was getting to it, moisture under the tape and the splint...*gag* So I purchased "anti-fungal cream" and have been frantically applying it every 30 seconds or so. It seems to be working, as the redness, itchiness and soreness is gone, and the skin has grown back. I think my finger may have run out of cute little tricks to punish me for forcing it to do manual labor, but if a tiny face grows on the tip and starts muttering satanic phrases at me, I wouldn't be surprised.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Forget social work!

When we visited Sea World last month, I decided I was going to quit my job and move to California to be the professional penguin feeder. The lady whose job I was planning on stealing got to sit on a rock and hand feed the penguins. And cuddle the penguins. One climbed into her lap and it sat there and let her pet it while she fed all the others. She was, essentially, a professional penguin cuddler. I wanted to do that.

Now? I have to find a way to get Danny to move to China with me:

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Milestone


Siva's ears stood up for the first time by themselves yesterday. Our baby's already looking like a grown up doggy.

Monday, April 14, 2008

More Random Tidbits

I guess I've been too busy to formulate a comprehensive blog entry recently, but I keep thinking of little bullet points to mention:

1. The person I used to share my office with would tell me that her body would "know" what kinds of deficiencies it had, and she would get cravings to remedy those deficiencies. Her body was very helpful, and cause her to crave things like broccoli and bean sprouts. Either I have some very strange vitamin deficiencies, or my body wants to sabotage itself. My most common cravings are for cheese (usually chedder or bried), sour cream, or sour dough jack's from jack in the box. Most recently? I have been craving cocktails. I don't want to get drunk or anything, it's just that a margarita martini or a cosmo keeps sounding so yummy. Basically my body is trying to turn itself into a drunk, fat chick.

2. Danny and I have been listening to one radio station while working on the house because we keep forgetting to bring cd's, and we can't agree on any other type of music. I have now banned that radio station because they play the same five songs ALL DAY. There's a particularly annoying song by Three Days Grace called "Riot". It's a generic song by young, angry white men about how oppressed and pissed off they are. Because, you know, there are so many societal barriers that they have to overcome. And their creative solution? I quote:
"LET'S GO RIOT. RIOT. LET'S GO RIOT. RIOT" *repeat for five minutes*
Because society doesn't already have a low enough opinion about your problem solving skills. Way to be.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Pinky Update

So, after making an appointment to see my doctor on Monday, I spoke with my dad who said to skip the doctor and see a specialist. I call my doctor, and the nurse tells me he doesn't just want me to see a specialist, he wants me to see a hand surgeon specialist. Great. So, I call the surgeon's office and have yet another embarrassing conversation:
Me: Hi, I need to make an appointment to get my finger looked at.
Receptionist: Okay, what is your concern?
Me: I think I damaged a ligament or tendon.
Nurse: How long ago was the injury?
Me: .....about a month ago....
Nurse: A month?!
Me: well, yes.
Nurse: And how did you injure it?
Me: (trying to figure out the shortest explanation). I....was hammering....and hyper-extended my finger.....repeatedly....
Nurse: Okay, we have an opening on the 17th. Did your doctor take x-rays?
Me: Umm...I haven't seen a doctor yet.
Nurse: (astonished pause) But you have it splinted, right?
Me: Yes. I didn't at first, but then it kind of started locking up when I curled my finger, so I figured I should put a splint on it.
Nurse (longer astonished pause) I will talk to the doctor Monday and see if he can fit you in.
Me: (sheepishly) Thank you.

I didn't tell her that my Walgreen's splint was making my finger all shriveled and funky smelling, so Danny broke off the end of a plastic fork and taped it to my finger. I think I'll put the regular splint on before I see the doctor. I'm not sure he'd approve of picnic-ware being used for medical purposes.

Miscellaneous Thoughts

1. I was listening to NPR on my way to work, as I always do. However, I have proven myself so addicted to NPR that I will continue listening even when they do their pledge week, and spend all their time begging for money. Do I donate? No. Do I continue to listen and feel slightly guilty for not donating instead of changing the station? Yes. And I'm glad I did, because I wouldn't have heard The Worst Attempt at an Analogy Ever:
Radio guy, starting his schpeal for money: "So, in that last story we heard about how the happiest people on the planet live in colder climates. They say it's because you are forced to get along with each other because you're stuck inside most of the time. That's like the people working at the station. We're a happy family....because we're stuck here...inside...but you know, not because it's cold out. It's hot in Arizona.....it's not like we'd freeze to death if we left....(realizes he's gone drastically off script and launches back into the pleas for money).

Isn't that awesome? Public radio stations are like people living in Denmark in the winter! Except, they don't live together. And it's a radio station, not a country. And it doesn't get cold here. But other than that, exactly alike!!

2. Our new puppy is busy terrorizing the other animals. Hiccup is playing the "don't touch the floor because it's made out of quicksand" game that I used to play in elementary school, because Siva (we named her Siva by the way) can't make it onto the couches yet. Catsby likes to sit in the same room as Siva and make horrible snarling, meowling, hissing noises, but does not feel the need to leave the room. And Siva is living up to her name as the "Lord of Destruction" in the Hindu religion by trying to chew through everything. Like, arms and electrical cords. But she's still cute.

3. I saw a thug on the southside today walking a poofy little pomeranian. I would have taken a picture, but he probably would have shot me.

4. We are moving in a week, and we don't have the drywall done. I'm trying not to panic.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Just A Matter of Time

I had predicted that by the end of our house renovation project, either Danny or I would end up with some kind of serious injury. I SHOULD have predicted that I would end up with the injury, because I am clumsy and seem to fall into freak accident situations a lot. Usually, these accidents are entirely my fault, and inexplicable to the general public. For example:

When I was 5 or 6 years old I ran into a parking meter while walking down the street because I wasn't looking where I was going. I was short, so the parking meter hit me dead on and I fell over. I'm sure the camp counselors were only in high school, but I remember them looking at me without much sympathy and with a lot of astonished amusement. But then, I probably would look at a kid who ran into a stationary object much in the same way.

When I was in 4th grade we were playing a spelling game that involved sitting on the top of our desks. I leaned back a little too far, and tipped right off my desk, head first, feet sticking up in the air. Again, viewed with now familiar looks of astonished amusement.

In high school PE, I bent down right as my friend was serving the birdie in bad mitton (no, I don't know how to spell that). The edge of the racket hit my eye, and I ended up with a swollen optic nerve and partially detached retina. The benefit was that I got to miss the majority of the rest of PE because I was on strict bed rest so I didn't go blind.

This history should have been a clue that, at some point while working on our house, I would manage to do something to injure myself in a stupid way. Which leads to my explanation of the splint on my pinky. In the desert the dirt is extremely hard, almost rock-like. Danny tells me to dig 5 big holes in which we are going to put wooden pillars to hold up the patio roof. I am not fond of manual labor, I have a short attention span, and I get frustrated easily. So by the fifth hole I'm getting ever so slightly annoyed. Then I hit a layer of rock, and my annoyance turns into a determined rage. I take the claw side of the hammer and start swinging it violently against the rock with all my might, not noticing that the reverberations of the hammer are snapping back my pinky finger with every blow. When the dust settles and the hole is dug, I notice a slight twinge in my finger. The twinge continues every day, and soon my pinky finger is getting stuck in the bent position every time I make a fist. Like, I straighten the rest of my fingers, but the pinky doesn't get the memo. I call my distinguished doctor father whose stellar advice is: "It's probably a tendon. Keep an eye on it". This is the same man who, after I complained about stomach pain while he was driving me to school said "It might be appendicitis. Have a good day!" and dropped me off in the parking lot. So I don't always have the most faith in his diagnostic abilities. I resort to the best doctor of all: Dr. Internet, and find a description of my pinky problem. Apparently it's an injured ligament, and if not corrected can result in a permanent condition called "boutonniere's deformity".

The last thing I need is a deformed finger, so now it is being safely held straight by an aluminum splint I bought at Walgreen's. I call it my bionic finger, and want to make it a James Bond-esque attachment. I was thinking about having a tiny knife that could pop out of the end so I could shank someone, or maybe a deadly laser. It could release smoke so I could make a quick get-away. It could turn into a phone, or I could store a capsule of deadly poison in it. The possibilities are endless. I may keep the bionic finger after the pinky heals, because a pinky finger is kind of useless, but a BIONIC pinky finger would be the awesomest thing ever.

But this incident wouldn't be complete without, yes, the look. I was in my favorite coffee shop today, and noticed that the cashier also had a finger splint. I remarked on it, and he asked how I injured my finger. I relayed the story, slowly realizing how crazy it sounded. When I was done there was a slight pause. Then he says "were you...drunk?" "No....just, well, frustrated". And there it was. The widening of the eyes. The slight smirk. He tried to cover it up, but I knew. And I'm used to it.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Things I Have Learned While Watching Daytime TV

While my body attempted to expell all it's fluids and possibly organs today (sounds gross, right? It was grosser being there, trust me) I got to revel in the wonder that is bad television.
Some thoughts

1. Jennifer Garner in "Elektra" has not learned that if you are a hitman (hitperson?) you should perhaps try to blend in more with your prestine lakeside environment by not wearing a red leather jumpsuit and carrying a crossbow with enough attachments to also be a gun, sword, and cuisinart.

2. A good drinking game- take a shot every time you encounter pseudo-scientific language in a commercial. My favorites so far today have been:
-"Firms your skin at least one dermatological level!"
-"This revolutionary concept was cited in this scientific journal" Camera shows an article from "The Journal of Scientific Discoveries"

3. WWII veterans are not only NOT appalled by the Bret Michael's Rock of Love girls performing a strip tease/hula hoop show while reciting the preamble to the constitution AND pronouncing "posterity" as "prostrerity", they will actually vote them as the best performance and hobble rapidly off their chairs to be the first to catch the girls' camouflage tube tops.

4. Top models are about character, inner beauty, self confidence, and intelligence. But you're too fat, your muscles are too big, and you're too short.

5. If you are going to have Ellen Degeneres as a house guest, she will be expecting a home made body scrub, fresh flowers, ironed sheets, and a picture of you and her as a souvenir on her bed side.

Other than that, today has been really, really bad.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

All's quiet on the western front

My biggest worry was how our spoiled only-puppy would feel about an invader. Thus far he has sniffed her, walked near her without freaking out, and FALLEN ASLEEP NEXT TO HER!

If that's not a sign of her being a member of the family, I don't know what is.

New Family Member

She's a 7 week old German Shepherd puppy. I told Danny we could get a big dog when we got a real house, and we've been keeping our eye out since we're going to be moving in soon. We don't know her very well yet, except that she grunts like a pig when we pick her up, and sleeps a lot. And she has enormous paws:


I was kind of hesitating until Danny took one look at the dog and said "you look familiar!" He had a childhood german shepherd that he adored and his parents gave away. I couldn't say no after seeing the look on his face.

Boring Dream Blog

One of my pet peeves are people who write about their dreams as if they are interesting, because dreams are rarely interesting to anyone other than the dreamer. So, I'm mainly writing this so I remember it later.

Jung said that periodically people have more meaningful, significant dreams than usual, and they are the subconscience having a revelation. This might be one of thos edreams, but I haven't figured out what it means yet.

I dreamt that I was tricked into going into a church by a guy I know at work who is very religious. The church was white with wood trim, peaked roof, very simple. I felt very drawn to the building, and walked into the church. A pastor wearing purple robes was preaching, and she was a thirty-something woman w/ well coifed hair who looked like a realtor. The pulpit was much higher than the pews. I could hear her when I first walked in, but then when I walked directly in front of her I could see her talking but I couldn't hear her. The man from work said that because of the way the alter and the pews were set up, you can't hear her when you're right in front of her. I kept thinking, I can believe in the building, I can't believe in the pastor. Then I started walking around the grounds. The surrounding space was very dark, and I felt like there was a ceiling far above me that I couldn't see, and the structures on the grounds of church were white and glowing. There were reflecting pools and white archways covered in white roses. I looked in one of the reflecting pools and there were little white minnows swimming around in the pool. They were picking up white pebbles from the bottom of the pool and eating them, then turning into the pebbles and floating to the bottom of the pool. The man from work said something about "that's the pool of vengence". Then they took me to a warehouse full of different kinds of stone that they were going to add to the church. One pallet had some regular looking granite on it, but then the next pallet had slabs of translucent glowing crystal. I accidentally knocked over the stack of crystals, and they all shattered. I started crying and thought "I finally found a church I could believe in, and now I've broken something so they won't let me join". Then I woke up.