Monday, March 31, 2008

Hacked Off

Way back when, like 6 years ago, when Em was into it, i had an account on Neopets.

I had a little virtual pet Aisha named Alavans. I liked to feed Alavans and buy books for her to read so she would be smart. I would feel badly when Alavans got hungry even though i knew it was only some bits and bytes fer cryin' out loud. Such is the power of guilt motherhood.

One day i was doing something or other on Neopets when i was asked to sign in in the middle of the activity. It asked me to sign in twice, which i did.

Then all the neocash in my neoaccount disappeared. I had been hacked! My husband and child both helpfully pointed out that i shouldn't have done that. I was so annoyed that i put Alavans up for adoption and closed my account.

Yesterday i tried to leave a comment for
Gordo. I was signed into Google as me, but after i clicked to submit the comment, it wanted me to sign into my Google account again.

Sorry Gordo, the memory of Alavans haunts me still.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


I've never seen anyone do this before.

We had a house guest last week. That was fine and dandy, but look how she scraped butter off the top of the stick every time she used it.

I hack pieces off the end of the stick when i get butter. I was secretly amazed while watching her, but i didn't say anything.

Of course i went and snuck pictures of it so i could show y'all.

I wonder if this is just a different way to use butter, one that i have been ignorant of all these years.

It's amazing how many different ways there are to do things, things i had never thought of there being more than one way to do.

She also took her bath towels and spread them all over the floor of the guest room to dry, rather than hanging them back up on the rack to dry.

How are you odd in ways i hadn't suspected?

Friday, March 28, 2008

Pecking order

I noticed something a few days ago. It was when i was with someone who i perceive as being higher on the pecking order than i am. She is a busy and important woman, on the boards of many charitable organizations, a former executive in a major corporation. Blah blah blah.

What i noticed is that when i listen to her, i am really just waiting for an opportunity to tell her a story about me, or my daughter. I want to tell her my story so she will know that i am important too.

Not very pretty is it?

This is am old habit with me, one about which i am not pleased.

Why should i care if she thinks i am important? If i allow myself to relax for a moment, i realize that i don't really care very much. So why am i acting this way?

Now that i have caught myself doing this, it will be easier for me to shut up and listen instead of trying to tell stories that i think will enhance my status in the herd.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Travel alert

I am, uh, going to Japan. In less that two weeks. For 11 days. With two teenaged girls and The Mister.

We will fly into Tokyo, stay there for 3 days, then travel to Kobe to drop the girls off for a 5 night home stay with their former Japanese exchange student's families, then travel to Kyoto with just The Mister, pick the girls back up, go back to Tokyo, and then fly home.

I am nervous. I do NOT speak Japanese, at all, other than Please, Thank You and You're Welcome.

Is it true that i won't need any kind of adaptor for my toothbrush charger? And my ipod charger? And my camera charger? These things are vital to my happiness, especially the toothbrush.

I have read that the three things i must NEVER do in Japan are:
1) Leave my shoes on when entering a home or temple.
2) Stick my chopsticks upright into my rice.
3) Blow my nose in public.

I wonder what they will make of a six foot woman with huge feet in their midst. I expect to feel like Godzilla tramping through the city.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Check-out line

Since i am a daily grocery shopper, i was in the grocery store today. As i was waiting in line i did what i cannot avoid, peruse the tabloids.

Three-headed baby born to alien love child of Elvis (or whatever.)
Britney blah blah blah (whatever.)
Angelina and Brad blah blah blah (yawn. whatever.)
Patrick Swayze's Brave Fight Against Cancer.


I wonder, has anyone ever fought a cowardly fight against cancer? (I also wonder why he, who is older than i am, has a face that looks like plastic. But whatever.)

Are we automatically brave when we get cancer? Or any other horrible hideous fatal awful disease?

Does anyone just give up and lie on the front lawn and say "Take me, i am not fighting?"

(Because i just might. Depending on my age at the time of the news.)

Or does merely coping with what life gives us make us brave?

If it does, we are all brave. We cope with depression, diabetes, handicapped children, cancer, aging parents, PTSD, sexual assault, young children, autism, abandonment, alcoholism, anxiety, poverty, homelessness, neglect, custody fights, divorce... the list goes on.

No one gets out alive.

Just thinking about how brave i think y'all are.

Friday, March 21, 2008


This morning as i was leaving my car in a parking lot, i heard some growling and yipping from a weed-infested corner of the lot. Of course i went over to investigate.

I found a small spotted dog backed against the fence by a larger dog. The larger dog had a doggie hard-on and the spotted dog was trying to protect her backside by keeping it towards the fence.

Knowing better than to insert myself into this disagreement, i clapped my hands and shouted. The larger dog ran past me and the spotted dog, sadly, disappeared through a hole in the fence. I wanted to collect her and save her from certain ruin, but she was too scared.

When i was about 9 years old, we had a female beagle who my mother had hopes of breeding. I have no idea why. Of course this means putting up with having a dog in heat dripping blood all over the house.

She chewed off her doggie maxi-pad. She tried to climb the chain link fence surrounding her dog area. I remember opening our front door and finding four doggie gentleman callers waiting around outside for a visit with our dog. It was an exciting time.

We weren't supposed to let her out without watching her during her first heat because she was too young to get knocked up. Plus my mom wanted to pay to get our dog laid by an expert. Oh, and probably by a purebred too.

Of course the one time that i went out with her, i didn't pay enough attention and the next thing i knew there was another dog stuck to her. Literally stuck. I know this because i tried to pull her away from Romeo. Alas, they were well and truly stuck, and Romeo took a snap at me for my troubles.

So i got in trouble. (Although my adult self wants to go back and slap my parents for expecting a 9 year old to protect a dog in heat from ravishment. )

Our dog ended up getting a doggie abortion and a hysterectomy post-haste, and that was the last of the dog breeding ambitions of my mom.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Book group update

Last night was my third book group meeting. We read a book by a local author. It was Some Things Are Unbreakable by Kate Willette. I highly recommend it. I even have a copy if one of you wants me to mail it to you.

When i say this book is local, i mean really, really local, as in one of the people mentioned in the book lives next door to me.

The library arranged to have the author present at our book group. How cool is that? It was interesting to meet her after reading this book about her family. Although she was comfortable in front of our little group, she seemed like a private person not quite sure what to do with the familiarity that her book engenders in the reader.

I just realized that i like what i call Real Life Medical Drama or Doctor Books. In the New York Times Magazine every week the first thing i read is the Diagnosis feature. In Discover Magazine (back when my parents loved me enough to buy me a subscription every year) i always turned first to the Vital Signs column.

Some favorite books:

My Own Country: A Doctor's Story by Abraham Verghese (i LOVE this book)
The Tennis Partner by Abraham Verghese
Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science by Atul Gawande
Sick Girl by Amy Silverstein (I somehow ended up with two copies of this one, if anyone wants one of them let me know.)
Not By Accident: Reconstructing a Careless Life by Samantha Dunn
Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy
An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison
Just Checking by Emily Colas
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman (Another favorite)

And stuff like that. Know any good books for me?

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Get your own damn fan.

Here is a link to the website that sells the fans, in case you need one, and i think you do.


The Mister's birthday was this past week. Around our house we refer not to a single day of celebration, but to "The Birthday, Day X," or "The Birthday Festival" in stentorian tones.

So tonight is The Birthday, Day 6. The Mister and i are heading off to downtown Seattle to spend a night of debauchery in a hotel down at the Market. We will be dining at a fancy restaurant and paying far too much for a bottle of wine and a meal.

It'll be great.

We are leaving Em home alone for the first time ever overnight. She declared that she was fine with that, and so am i. Hope the house is still standing when we return.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

a fan, i haz one.

Somebody sent me this:

It's a USB port fan. I have been complaining recently about a natural phenomenon common to women of a certain age.

It was sent in secret, but i think i have been able to decode from clues the person who sent it to me. It has little led lights that activate when it is on into lovely little patterns.

I am in love with it. Here are some of the patterns:

I feel loved. Thank you Kim.

Tell me you are jealous.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Household tips*

*second in a rare but informative series.

(Plus a gratutious picture of my cat.)

Today's tip: Do not microwave liver.

I roasted a whole chicken last night (yes, with a lemon up its ass.) The chicken came with the usual disgusting extra bits.

I thought the cats might appreciate a little treat, so i put the liver into a little pyrex bowl and threw it into the microwave for 30 seconds.

Within 15 seconds, the liver EXPLODED. There is gore everywhere. The inside of my microwave looks like someone tried to dry off a poodle. There are grisly bits of flesh stuck, nay, cooked onto the walls. Maybe they can film Saw V in there.

Pate anyone?

Considering his role in the event, Grey Cat shows a lack of concern about "the microwave incident."

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

aye i eye I

I woke up this morning bleary-eyed and exhausted from another night of not enough sleep. This e-mail awaited me in my inbox, a comment from anonymous:

I think its really stupid on your blog how you use the lowercase "I". It is really pretentious and self absorbed. Who do you think you are? e.e. cummings?

Oh ha ha ha ha ha. *gasp* *snort* Seriously cracked me up. I scared the cats off the bed with my laughing.

This is a blog, of COURSE it's self-absorbed.

In case anyone cares, i started using the lowercase "i" when i was a pretentious, self-absorbed pre-teen with the logic that none of the other pronouns get the honor of capitalization, so why should i? I continue using it because; 1) my typing is slow, painful and full of errors, one less keystroke matters to this impatient person, and 2) it's a habit.

Thanks for the laugh anon, i needed that.

And just because bitch is the new black, who can spot the grammar error in anon's comment?

Sunday, March 02, 2008


I was waiting in front of the movie theater for Em. A white mini-van driven by a woman is stopped in front of the box office with the driver's door open so the woman can talk to a young man standing next to the car. I can clearly hear the woman, but not the young man.

"It's not that i don't like you, but my daughter is 15. It's ILLEGAL for you to date her!"

mumble mumble

"You are 20, she is 15. She's still in school. She needs to grow and learn."

mumble rumble

"You are ready to settle down and start a family, you should find someone your own age for that. She needs to stay in school."

I walk away to give them some privacy, although that was clearly for my comfort as they didn't seem to care.

A minute later the car door slams and the mini-van drives away.

It would be too much to hope for that he might listen to her.

I see Em walking up to the theater. We buy our tickets and go see a dumb romantic comedy together.