Monday, September 26, 2011


1)  Chances are, by the time you read this I will have mutated into some kind of grotesque, lumpy, gray humanoid creature that can read minds and ooze under doors.  Why?  Well, while I was at the gym this morning, I wasn't thinking and I wiped my mouth on my gym towel.  You know the one I'm talking about.  The scratchy, overly bleached towel provided by the gym that people use to wipe sweat off of their hands and weight machines?  Wiping your face on a gym towel is bad enough, but not totally disgusting, but wiping your mouth...ugh.  Not only that, before I could stop myself, I licked my lips.  It was just a reflex, and my brain was not quick enough to tell me to stop.  I was inside, so I couldn't spit, and so now I'm fairly certain that I've infected myself with something that will probably cause Athletes Liver or something like that.

I feel unclean. UNCLEAN ON THE INSIDE!  *whimper*

2) So...Facebook has changed and it's annoying.  I mean, I'm not flipping out and threatening to stop using it like some people, but it's irritating simply because it's new.

 It's funnier if you say it in his voice. DO IT!

My only problems with it at this point are A) It janked up the privacy settings, which you have to figure out how to deal with and that is kind of a serious issue that needs to be addressed and  B) I'm tired of people complaining about it. Threatening to stop using the site isn't going to get Mark Zuckerberg in a tizzy and cause him to change it back.  Honestly, he's probably too busy rolling around naked in zillion dollar bills to care much of what you think.  He's got 750 million or so other people who are going to stick around even if you don't.

Then, of course, some rumor got started that Facebook was going to start charging for memberships and people got their knickers all in a twist about it, once again threatening to stop using it.  First off, when you sign up, the page says "Free and always will be."  Also, Facebook Users are the product that Facebook sells to advertisers, and I doubt any smart business is going to charge it's product for the privilege of being sold.  The whole debacle just makes me wish that Facebook had an app that allowed you to remotely smack people upside the head.

3) I've got to hide from the Jehovah's Witnesses for the rest of my life, and it's all my fault.  OK, see, the former J.W. who used to come to our neighborhood was a nice lady that would stop by and hand me a copy of her magazines.  I'd always take them because I knew she was just out doing her thing and I didn't want to discourage her from telling people about God.  Also, I'm fairly certain that she probably got the door slammed in her face more than once.  I think she knew I wasn't interested in joining her religion, but I was nice to her, so she'd always drop by.  The last time I actually saw her in person was while I was sick with pneumonia and drugged beyond the capacity of rational thought.  I had been asleep and heard the doorbell ring.  In full-on drugged Crazy Town mode, I jumped out of bed and ran to the door, jerked it open and scared the crap out of her.  I mean, she actually jumped back, got caught on a broken pot that was behind her and almost fell down the stairs.  I'm going to go out on a limb and say that I probably looked like the girl from The Exorcist, which isn't exactly what a traveling missionary is expecting to see when they stop by a house.  I have no idea what I said to her, but she didn't waste time getting away from me.  I know she said she was sorry I was sick, and in my memory, I said it was OK, but for all I know I mumbled something only the Elder Gods would understand.  Yog Sithoth rules!  I dunno.  All I know is that I never saw her again, and whomever took over for her was like some kind of Jehovah's Witness ninja.  I'd never see or hear them come by, but when I'd open my door, a Watchtower magazine would be rolled up and stuck between the doorknob and the door frame.  I liked it that way.

Well, last week I was in the middle of eating lunch and the doorbell rang.  I thought it was a package being dropped off, but was Elvis.  Not that Elvis, silly...a Jehovah's Witness named Elvis who wanted to ask me questions about God.  I didn't want to be rude, again, he's a missionary and I respect that, but still...sigh.  Of course, I wasn't in the mindset at that moment to be given a Sunday school lesson, and I answered his question wrong.  I tried to backtrack, but he was having none of it.  He went on with his spiel, handed me a magazine, and asked if he could come back and discuss it with me.  I didn't know what to say that wouldn't come out rude, so I said OK.  The thing is, I don't want to discuss it with him.  I already know that while our beliefs have similar themes and touchstones, they just do not agree on important things.  I wish I had the stones to just tell him, no, I'm not interested, but I didn't and now I've got to figure out a way to avoid these people because unlike the Mormons, these people WILL come back.  They are tenacious!  I always try to work in that I am a Christian when they come by and start asking me questions, which is my probably too-subtle way of letting them know I am not interested, but they probably hear that all the time and they want to win people over to their side. 

I just don't want to be rude, but I'm also really not interested. I going to spend the rest of my life with no lights on, creeping around the house on my hands and knees so as not to be seen through the windows.  I'm such a jelly-fish.

4) You know, I've never before realized just how often I walk around the house in various states of undress*.  Now that the family who owns the land behind us is having it cleared off by a large group of male landscapers, and since we haven't yet put blinds up in the dining room's big windows, I'm forcefully reminded, usually too late, that they can see right into my house.  We used to have opaque curtains in the kitchen, so I'm used to having privacy.  I mean, I'm not one of those people who vacuum naked or anything like that, but I've never thought twice about running to the other parts of the house while I'm getting ready to go someplace and not fully dressed yet.  I don't even know if anyone up there has seen me, but in my cringing imagination, they have and they've laughed. 

*I'd like to apologize for any mental pictures that might have caused.  It was not intentional and I can't be held responsible for therapy bills.  That is all.

Monday, September 19, 2011


1) Honestly, I wish more was going on in my life to write about.  I even bore myself. 

2) I bought a bathing suit the other day.  Blarg.  I think we all know how I feel about wearing a bathing suit, and it's precisely why I haven't even owned one in years.  I actually ordered it online from a place called Pin Up Girl Clothing, because secretly I want to own one of everything they sell.  I received said bathing suit (the one piece with the cherries on it, in case you're curious) and I can't say I'm impressed with the outcome of myself in the thing.  Eh, I wasn't expecting a miracle!  Also, the suit is super cute, so I'm not going to complain too much, and I will wear it.  Out.  In public.  *gulp*  Oh well, at least I haven't reduced myself to wearing a Victorian era bathing dress!  :)

3) I felt so stupid at church yesterday.  Oy.  While I'm running A/V for the service, one of the things I've gotten used to doing is signaling the ushers when it's time to walk to the front of the sanctuary to collect offering.  Usually, I let them know when it's time to get ready and when it's time to walk.  Yesterday, some changes were made on the order of services, and I got lost on the list.  I somehow managed to send the guys down an entire song early.  It wouldn't have been so bad if the man I was feverishly waving at to just GO didn't try to tell me I was wrong.  Since I was clearly convinced that he was wrong, I just signaled to the guys on the other side to go and since they did, everyone did...and that's when I realized I was wrong after all.  Granted, few people realized anything was amiss, but I was so embarrassed.  I probably wouldn't have been as embarrassed if I hadn't just been sitting there thinking: "I'm organized and I know what's going on today, why is that guy not doing what I say?!"  Luckily they forgave my incompetence. 

4) Other than miscuing ushers, guess what I did this weekend?  I played Portal for the first time and I loved it!  I'd known about Portal for a long time, and I knew the pop culture bits of it (The Cake Is A Lie) but I'd never had a chance to play it.  Luckily, I was able to download the game for free and it completely consumed me for hours.  I don't usually get that caught up with video games, unless I'm playing very specific ones with friends, but this one was fun!  Also, for not having a clue how to play it before hand, I was pretty good at it!  I did finally have to read some hints and walkthroughs on the last few levels, but I tried to keep that to a minimum unless I got completely confused.  In the end, I finally defeated GLaDOS - which creeped me out, by the way.  The whole game did.  It was just weird.  Now I am going to get Portal 2!  I'm the kind of dork these game companies love, I'm sure.

At the very end, while the player is scrambling to defeat the giant computer bad-guy, it taunts you the whole time that you're destroying it's various parts.  One line really stuck out for me.  GLaDOS says

"You've been wrong about every single thing you've ever done, including this thing. You're not smart. You're not a scientist. You're not a doctor. You're not even a full-time employee. Where did your life go so wrong?"

All I could think of was "Wow, did the HR department for the SpRocket (ptooey) write this game?"  Heehee.

I did learn one important thing during all the game playing.  At some point while I was playing, I got sick.  Really sick.  It was the worst kind of car sick feeling I'd had in years, and that includes the 2006 New Years Eve incident.  At first I thought I really was sick, and that something was terribly wrong with me.  I took medicine and chowed down on ginger, and everything I could think of, but nothing worked.  I finally stepped away from the computer for a while and felt better.  It just turned out that first player shooter games make me really motion sick.  I'm so hard-core!  :)

5) I've been having a string of weird nightmares lately.  They aren't the sit up and scream kind, but they are unsettling.  I only clearly remember parts of two of them.  In one, I'm being murdered over and over again.  It isn't like I'm waking up when I'm killed, like a normal person would, it's almost like I'm being reincarnated immediately into someone else that's being murdered.  Oh, and every incarnation is being killed by being stabbed with poison needles.  What would Freud say about that, I wonder?  :)  The other one was not a violent nightmare, but it was about a homeless girl I meet and try to help get a job.  I help her put together a resume and give her recommendations, but no one will hire her because they don't want to hire someone who is associated with me.  She tries and tries to get work, but because I helped her, she can't get hired.  Then she gets hit by a bus, and for some reason it's my fault because I couldn't help her get a job.  I don't understand how the last part was my fault, but it didn't make me feel any better.  Poor imaginary homeless girl.  :(

6) Congratulations are in order for my friend Jason who just got engaged to his loverly girlfriend!  Good luck, you guys! 

7) Also, send out some good vibes to another couple of my friends who will be moving to Birmingham to pursue bigger, better, and more financially stable things!  I hope everything goes perfectly and that they are successful in all of their endeavors!  

Wednesday, September 07, 2011


1) OK, I'm having a much better morning this morning.  Seriously, I think I was traumatized by the events of yesterday.  No joke, I was cringing and washing my hands every 5 minutes, and I think I sat down at one point and went catatonic.  That sounds like an exaggeration, but I swear to you that I lost 3 hours of my life.  I heard the clock chime 11:00 AM, and the next thing I knew, I was looking at the clock and it said 2:45 PM.  I never once heard the clock chime again, nor do I have any idea what I was doing that whole time.  In my memory, I was sitting at my computer desk reading a website, but I don't think that I was reading anything so interesting that I wouldn't move for 3 hours or hear the clock chime.  Weirdness. 

2) It's so nice and cool outside that I finally got to break out my bluejeans again!  Oh, how I've missed them.  Besides that, I've been freezing cold, but I think that's because the temps changed so fast.   I prefer the cold, though, except that it makes me sleepy.  I have too much to do to be sleepy.  I wish the weather would hold right here for a while, but it's going to be sunny and warmer again before I know it.  Oh, well.  Right now it feels like football weather, which I love.  Only now I can enjoy it properly instead of wearing a wool band uniform!  I can't be certain, but my complete indifference to football may have stemmed directly from wearing those uniforms.  It was torture, I say!

3) Speaking of bands, Steve had his Madison Community Band Patriotic Concert last Saturday!  They were joined by the US Army Materiel Command Band, which was amazing.  They sounded so good, and I think it was better than usual because they were in a proper auditorium, plus they had 40-something more players than they usually do.  One of the Army guys played the oboe, and he was the first male oboe player I've ever seen.  He was also the best oboe player I've ever heard in person, plus he was big and buff enough to kick anyone's ass if they made fun of him for being a male oboe player.  I also got to meet Abraham Lincoln!  Well, not the original one, ' know...he's dead and stuff.  But Mr. Dennis Boggs, who often works with MCB, was there and he was just as good as the other one!  Maybe even better because he is alive!  Honestly, he did a great job at performing as President Lincoln, and I got to be his practice hand shaker as he walked down the aisle during rehearsal.  I kept cracking up while he was giving his speeches, because I've been reading the book "Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter" which tells about his part in history, as well as weaving in the fictional bits of story within the framework of his real life.  I kept expecting him to pull out an ax and talk about the vampires he'd killed along the way!

There were also civil war reenactors there, too, and I have to say it was odd seeing some of those wearing blue coats.  Being from Alabama, I've generally only seen Confederate soldier reenactors, but Union soldiers were just as cool.  I'm just glad they didn't get too into the part and burn the place down.  It was a close call, though, because there was almost a ruckus when the bad director wanted to place the Stars and Bars next to the Union flag. The band director reminded them that it was a concert, not a reenactment, so they cooled their jets.  There was also a fiddle player who did period appropriate songs and dancers in hoop-skirts.  Ahhhh, I'd love to be able to do something like that.  I love wearing costumes, and I'm fairly certain I could learn the old dances.  Old school waltzing can't possibly be as difficult as medieval dancing, and I was good at that!

Anyway, the band itself sounded so good, and hopefully we'll have some video of it up soon, for those of you who'd like to hear it!  :)

4) Rorschach left a pile of dead bird remnants on our porch last night.  I'm fairly certain it was supposed to be a gift, but I'd much prefer a nice fruit basket.  What is wrong with these animals?  All they do is leave me disgusting things in weird places!

Tuesday, September 06, 2011



Dear Lord...

I almost didn't write about this, because feces is not a subject that I discuss very often, even with my closest friends and family.  The subject is rarely appropriate. 

Before you get too concerned about the path this post is going to take, though, I assure you, I'm not talking about people poop.  I'm talking about dog poop.  Lots and lots of dog poop.  I'm going to go ahead and apologize in advance for even talking about poop at all, and for any crudities that may go along with that. 

Now, before I get to that part of the story, I'm going to need to back up a bit to yesterday, one of the rainiest days we've had in a long time.  *dream sequence music and wavy lines*

This is a long story.

As any of you long time readers know, Steve and I don't leave our dogs out in the rain if we can help it.  When it rains, we let the dogs out to do whatever business they have to attend to, and then we bring them back in and put them in their kennels.  Yes, that sounds dumb, but it's just easier not to have to deal with sopping wet animals.  I'm sure you'd agree.  Our dogs kind of hate this, because they don't like being penned up inside the kennels all day, but usually they are very good about sleeping and being quiet while in there.  One of the ways we trained them to get in their beds is to give them a treat once they are in there.  That is a two edged sword, though, because we have to give them a treat every time they go in, even if that's multiple times a day.  Yesterday was a more difficult day to keep them in the kennels because the rain lasted all day, Steve and I were both at home, and for some reason, when they can see us they would rather be out of the kennels getting petted rather than sitting in there just watching us.  So we had a day of them going in an out several times.  Butler was especially ornery, because he kept on getting up and demanding we let him out (batbatbat at the door with his paw.)  At first it seemed normal, like he just wanted to be petted, which was mostly the case, but a few of those times I realized he needed to go and take care of some business out in the yard.  This happened several times, and that should have given me a clue what was to come, but I'm apparently not smart enough to put two and two together.  Right before Steve and I went to bed, Butler had started doing the whole batbatbat at the door thing again, but because we had just let him outside less than an hour before putting him in, we thought he was just trying to get us to pet him again.We just told him to lie down and go to sleep.

Let's fastforward to this morning, shall we?

Today would have been a frustrating day without the subsequent poop issue, because I turned off the alarm clock in my sleep.  That isn't a big deal for me since I'm worthless and unemployed, but I'm the alarm clock keeper for Steve, and when I realized I'd turned it off, he was already late for work.  Oy.  He jumped up and ran to call his office, only to also realize he was not only late for work, but he had a doctor's appointment that he'd be late for if he didn't hurry and get out of the house.  Oy again. 

While Steve was rushing to do those things, I walked into the living room.  I had noticed a smell before walking in, but still didn't realize what it entailed, but when I got all the way in there...well...horf.  Butler had not just been wanting to be petted the night before.   He had some serious business to take care of outside, and since we hadn't understood this, he had to take care of it inside his kennel in a most disgustingly loose and copious way. Apparently, Steve and I had not realized that the other one had been giving the dogs their treats, so we were each giving them one when they'd go in.  That probably wouldn't have been an issue with just regular milk bones, but one of their favorite treats are some rawhide chewies made for cleaning their teeth, and the bag specifically says that too many of them would cause "gastric distress."  Understatement, folks.  Serious understatement.  

I'm going to pause here to tell you that at that moment, I suddenly remembered that we'd forgotten to put the trash can at the street the night before.  Since we'd been out of town last time the trash was picked up, our can was over-full and we didn't have room to put anything else in there, which meant we had at least one big, full trash bag sitting in the garage waiting for the can to be emptied.  We simply couldn't wait another week for the trash to be picked up, so I yelled to Steve that he needed to get the kennel outside, I let the dogs out- getting smacked in the leg and foot with a befouled dog's tail in the process- and I ran to roll the can to the street.  Oh, and it was raining.  Still.  I could hear the garbage truck, but couldn't see it, so I grabbed the can, started pushing it through the yard and struck a hillock of grass, which caused me to fall...hard.  It is only by the grace of God that the garbage can didn't open and spread trash all over the yard, but I have a feeling I might have had a complete come-apart if that had happened.  I jumped up, ran the can to the side of the street, only to realize that the garbage men had already passed my house.  I'm pretty sure I shouted some fairly foul language up into the rainy sky at that point.  I just stood there by the can, wet and bedraggled, and looked pitiful.  Luckily, the garbage man saw me and let me take the can to the other side of the street so it could be emptied by the big claw arm thing, so at least our garbage issue was solved.

After dragging the can back into the garage, I ran around to the side of the house and grabbed the hose.  I turned it on, thinking Steve would be bringing out the kennel any second.  It didn't come.  I was standing out in the rain getting soaked, when I saw Steve walk out of the house, sans kennel, going "HURK.....HUUUUURK!"  SIGH.  Look, I don't blame him for dry heaving.  It smelled horrible and even on the best days poop is gross and no one wants to have to deal with it.  However, I was wet and cold and had just face planted on the lawn.  I was NOT in the mood do deal with anyone's weak stomach.  I ran into the house, grabbed the kennel by the door and dragged it out one handed, pretty much destroying everything in my path.  Once I got it to the lawn, I tried spraying it with the hose, only to realize I didn't have the spray attachment.  So Steve brought me that and I tried to put it on, only I forgot you have to turn the hose off to do that, and I got sprayed in the face by the hose.   Gah!!!!!!!!

Finally attaching the spray thing, I started spraying out the kennel, and that was just... horrible.  I couldn't get the poo out.  Some of it had dried in there.   It was stuck to everything, and every few seconds I'd have to tip the thing over to empty poo water all over the ground.  That is where I almost lost my composure.  Seriously, the last thing I wanted was to be seen standing out in my yard, looking wet and homeless, standing next to a kennel filled with dried-on dog poo, holding a hose and crying, but I came close.  I was afraid I was going to have to climb into the kennel and scrub it out, and I just didn't think I could make myself do it.  Poor Bear was standing there, completely soaked, looking miserable and whining at me like he was thinking "Hey, I didn't poop on anything! Could you at least let me go inside?"  Butler was the only one who seemed to be happy.  Covered in his own filth or not, my guess was that he was feeling much better and so he was just running around, barking at stuff, and having a fine old time.

Steve finally came out, having composed himself, and informed me that we could take the kennel apart.  Hallelujah.  He managed to get the pieces apart and so I could get at the inside with the hose much easier, and he went inside to get ready to leave.  I had to take Butler's favorite toys, hose them off, and then throw them in the washer with about three bottles of bleach.  I also found a long handled brush that I could scrub the inside of the kennels with and a bottle of spray bleach to disinfect.  It was raining harder by this point, but I wasn't in a position to leave off what I was doing.  I knew I couldn't leave the dogs out there in the rain all day, but Butler was still covered in poo and he had no kennel in which to sleep in until I cleaned this one out.  When Steve came out to leave for his doctor's appointment, he made an offhand remark about wishing we had a spare kennel.  So I made the executive decision that he needed to go by Petsmart after his doctor appointment and get a new one.  I know that seems extreme, but I was desperate.  He left and I stood out there for another 45 minutes scrubbing the damn kennel down.  Oh, and to top all that off, something stung me on the neck while I was doing that.  I was not happy.  When I finally got the kennel clean, I took the hose over to the fence and called Butler over.  I spent the next 10 minutes trying to spray him off, but he would run away every time.  I don't blame him, I'm sure the water was cold.  I walked into the house to warm up a bit, only to hear the phone ring.  It was Steve.  He needed me to come to Petsmart with the truck to pick up the new kennel, because it was too big to fit in the Challenger.  So I jumped in the truck, picked up the kennel, and we got home with enough time for Steve to help me put it together before he had to leave for work. After that I was on my own again.

I managed to get Bear inside and sort of dried off.  He was not happy with me at all, and he looked like a drowned rat.  I got him inside and into his kennel, and then had to go deal with Butler.  I knew there wasn't anything else I could do but give him a bath, but have you ever tried to wrangle a beshitted 90 pound Lab into a shower stall when he hates water?  We usually have him washed at the vet's office because we can't handle him.  So, yeah, that was fun.  I was able to get him all the way through the house and into the bedroom before he remembered "BATH!"  I literally had to pick up his front legs and walk him into the bathroom.  I trapped him in and turned on the water, and it was the only time I've ever been glad the bathrooms in this house were small, because he couldn't get away from me.  I managed to keep him in the shower, holding him down with my side while scrubbing him and soaping him up.  I even had to wash his butt, and I don't ever want to do that again.  He didn't like it, I didn't like it, and I'm fairly certain he's going to need therapy now.  I'm just glad I had gloves. 

I was in the shower with him in my bra, sweatpants, and my athletic shoes - all soaking wet by the time I was done.  I tried to dry him off, tried to soothe him a little, but I'm pretty sure he hates me now.  He shook all over my clean, hanging clothes, all over the bedroom furniture, and all over the living room.  We both dripped as we went down the hall and I finally got him into his new kennel.  Once he was inside, I was so relieved, but I felt so disgusting.  I'd been washing my hands and keeping as far away from the poo as possible, but I'm sure you'll understand that just dealing with a mess like that can make a person feel foul. Also, by that point the water heater had been almost drained, so I couldn't even take a bath right away.  Oh, the humanity.  I had to sit around, freezing and wet, until more water heated.  It took about 30 minutes before I felt sure there was enough hot water to disinfect myself, and then I took a long, hot shower.  If I hadn't been so sure it would damage my skin, I would have sprayed bleach all over myself too...but I had to settle for anti-bacterial soap. 

I'm finally clean, but I still feel like I'm coated in filth.  I'm starving, but the idea of actually eating anything I touch is making me gag, so I'm going to have to wait until that passes.  I know it wasn't Butler's fault that this happened, and I'm not mad at him, I just wish he could have somehow managed to open his own kennel, open the kitchen and garage doors, and gotten outside before he pooped everywhere.  I know he doesn't have thumbs, but is that too much to ask? 

I think I'm going to need another bath.  *shudder*