31 December 2007

Kayak Na Pali: Part II, Take II

Okay, okay, okay. I’ve kept you in suspense for long enough and I’m sorry for doing that. However, you should know that suspense was my second choice, after water torture. But I soon realized it wasn’t possible to water torture my readers (actually, James is a reader and he’s being water-tortured by that leak in our kitchen).


This was during our lunch (and nap) break at Milolli State Park, somewhere around eleven or twelve miles into the kayaking trip.


I’m trying to bring my experience to paper, but the fact of the matter is I’ve spent a whole lot of time thinking about Na Pali, reading about it, looking at pictures, taking notes – all of this is called conceptualizing – but the problem is, I can’t recreate the experience.

You see, kayaking Na Pali induced such a wide range of incredible and foreign emotions that it isn’t possible to capture such an enlightening experience in words. It's left me speechless and I've given up trying to verbalize my feelings.

It's anti-climatic, I know, but instead you'll just have to check out this great photo-journal.

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Listening to: Nine Inch Nails - Down in it
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Running Late

Yeah, I know... I've barely posted anything for the last two weeks. And I really need to finish my kayaking story.

I'm working on it.

In the mean time, check out this performance by Amy Winehouse. I came across it the first time I googled her (okay, technically I you-tubed her) and it's still one of my favorites. She sings and plays guitar. At the same time. Not to mention that her voice is amazing.

Regardless of her fantastic singing abilities, Amy is sadly becoming well-known because of her drug problem and incidents like the time she got into a bloody brawl with her boyfriend because he busted her in a hotel room cutting herself and doing coke with a call girl. Craziness.

Not to promote her bad behavior or anything, but for curiosity's sake you can watch her snort coke on stage during a concert.

I gotta give it to her, at least she was trying to be sneaky... as if the hundreds of people watching her, you know, while she was she performed on stage, like they wouldn't notice what she was doing.

It's sad, really.

And totally cool to see. Check it out.

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Listening to: My neighbor yell and yell
(Dude, take it down a notch.)
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What I'm trying to listen to:

26 December 2007

Let’s see, where was I?

In case you’ve just tuned in, last week I left everyone on the edge of their seat when I failed to finish my kayak Na Pali story.

In case you’re not interested in reading the story in its entirety, here are a few excerpts:

…Just after 5 am, or midnight
…a surprising number of quasi-homeless people
…organized on the beach.
…And let’s be honest,
…I might have had one too many Mai-Tai’s.
…Apparently, this is kind of common.

You may want to go ahead and read the story because I inadvertently left out some important details.

Let’s see, where was I?

Oh yeah, I’m still working on it.

Sorry, folks. You’ll just have to keep waiting.


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Listening to: Led Zeppelin – Going to California
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22 December 2007

Brouhaha

I discovered Rogue Mocha Porter while James and I were visiting DC in April.

Described as Ruddy brown in color, a bittersweet balance of malt and hops with a light cream finish, it's one of my favorites.

If you're a fan of dark beer, this one kicks ass.

I've looked for it everywhere and although I've bumped into a Rogue brew here and there, I've yet to find a Mocha Porter outside of the DC area.

Until tonight.

Dierbergs had one six-pack sitting on the shelf.

Dude, how lucky am I? What did I do to deserve such a wonderful treat?

Wait, wait, wait. When fate intervenes and drops an awesome surprise in your lap, don't ask questions. Just shut up and drink your beer.

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Listening to: Les Claypool - Cosmic Highway
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19 December 2007

Kayak Na Pali

Six months ago today, James and I embarked on the adventure of a lifetime: seventeen miles of sea kayaking along Kauai’s rugged and beautiful Na Pali coast.

Before this experience I had never kayaked. I had never even been in a boat on the ocean. Sure, I’ve canoed the Current River a variety of times during the last few years, but there’s really no comparison. ‘Kayaking Na Pali’ and ‘floating the Current’ are nothing alike.

And let’s be honest, it was James’ idea.

I was clueless about what I’d gotten myself into.

Known as the Everest of sea kayaking, it’s been the most physically challenging and rewarding experience of my life. Not to mention that it ranks second on National Geographic’s list of America’s 100 Best Adventures, after rafting the Colorado River and just ahead of dog sledding the Brooks Range in Alaska.

It was a Tuesday.

Our kayaking journey began when we walked out the door just after 5 am, or midnight if we were still in St. Louis.

For me, it certainly felt like midnight since we had only been on Kauai for about 36 hours – not long enough to adjust to the five hour time difference. And since we’re being honest, I’ll admit that I might have had one too many Mai-Tai’s at Tahiti Nui the night before. (Tip: avoid Mai Tai’s the night before. Hat Tip: Tahiti Nui is a must-visit while you're exploring Kauai.)

An hour later we met our group at Kayak Kauai in Hanalei, loaded into the van, and headed to Ha'ena County Beach Park where our sea kayaking adventure would begin. (There were a surprising number of quasi-homeless people living in makeshift camps around the park. Apparently, this is kind of common on Kauai and Maui.)

Our group organized itself on the beach and we securely packed our gear into our kayaks. After brief paddling instructions by one of our guides, Doug, we were in the water.

About three minutes later, James and I flipped over.

It wasn’t bad at all. The worst part was trying to use my weak-ass arms to pull myself back into the kayak. Yes, climbing back in to the kayak sucked more than falling out.

And that’s the reason I only took one or two pictures the entire day. Even when we’d take a break from paddling, we stayed in our kayaks. I had no idea when or if we’d flip again and I didn’t want to take any chances of ruining my camera. (Tip: pack a waterproof camera.)

One mile into the voyage our guides gathered the group together for the last chance to bail out: Ke’e Beach. After this point there is no road access until Polihale State Park, sixteen miles (of paddling) away. Between here and there stand cliffs of lava rock interrupted only by sea caves, waterfalls and pristine beaches, some of which are off-limits to kayakers.

There’s a reason Ke’e Beach is nicknamed “End of the Road” by the locals – it’s the point of no return.

…To Be Continued…

(I have Christmas responsibilities, yo.)

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Listening to: Gorillaz - New Genius (Brother) [Mix]
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18 December 2007

12 Random Christmas Facts

I was tagged to write 12 random things about myself relating to Christmas. The tag included three other rules:

2. Please refer to this tag as ‘hoopla’.
3. Specifically tag others.
4. Do this as quickly as possible.

I’m breaking the rules:

1. In lieu of 12 boring facts, you're getting one interesting story.
2. No, I won’t.
3. I feel weird doing that, so I’m not tagging others.
4. I’ll take my sweet ass time, thanks.

Sorry, Charlie, it looks like I’m not doing anything remotely similar to what I was originally asked.

Oh well, here goes…

I believe it was 1991. I was a freshman in high school and it was Christmas Eve morning. My dad took me to this little hole-in-the-wall movie rental place, Q-mart, with a specific mission: return home with Faces of Death IV (for us) and A Muppet Family Christmas (for my mom and probably my brother because he was 8 – a little too young for Faces of Death).

My dad walks up to the counter…

My Dad: You got ‘Faces of Death IV’?

Clerk: Yes.

My Dad: CooOOOoooolll!

Clerk (to himself): Dude. It’s Christmas. WTF?

My dad: You got that ‘Muppet Family Christmas’ bullshit?

Clerk: Yes.

My Dad (disappointed): FUCK!!! (pause) *sigh* We’ll get both.

There is nothing cooler than being with your dad on Christmas Eve while he rents Muppets and Faces of Death, then defends the Muppet movie rental (as if it's weird) by saying, “my wife wanted it.”

Meanwhile, the guy is staring at my dad like, “Dude. It’s Christmas and you’re renting Faces of Death. I don’t mean to be rude, but what the hell?

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Listening to: Nil8 - The Insanity of Drayton Sawyer and His Hallucination of Love Brought on by the Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part II
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17 December 2007

Recent Photo Activity

I’d really like to get all of my pictures (from the last few years) uploaded to flickr, but it’s going to take the better part of an eon to accomplish that feat.

I spent most of yesterday afternoon uploading about 80 pictures. For those of you who were there on Friday, the answer is no, I did not take any pictures. I had my camera with me but for some odd reason I never took one picture at the Blogger gathering. If you’re interested, you can read about it and/or see photos here, here, here, here and here.

While a few of my newly-uploaded pictures are snow pictures from Saturday, the majority of them are either snowmobiling pictures or MySelf Portraits.

I’ve been working on the “MySelf Portraits” project for a while now, so it’s nice to see they’re finally starting to come together in one place. It only motivates me to take more pictures of me.

How egocentric?

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Listening to: Modest Mouse - She Ionizes & Atomizes
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16 December 2007

The Aftermath

You’re probably not wondering what has become of me since being named Local Blog O’ the Week.

You: But why would you say such a thing?

Me: DuuUUuuhh. I don’t think enough people cared for it to put a dent in my fifteen minutes of fame.

But really, what did I expect?

---Fame and fortune? (Yes and yes.)

---Sex, drugs, and rock & roll? (Yes, yes, and yes & yes.)

I didn’t get any of that.

I didn’t even get 72 virgins.

Sure, I battled the devil and kicked his ass on my very first try. But that’s a whole other skillz set.

All I got out of the experience was an f-word explosion followed by a short-lived ego boost and this lousy t-shirt.

14 December 2007

Guess what?

I ate a meatball for breakfast.

12 December 2007

Jim and Lynette

According to our dentist's receptionist, we are Jim and Lynette. Time and time again, I've corrected this and I can't get her to stop calling us by those names.

After tomorrow they'll remember who I am because I'm having a cavity filled. And I am terrified of the dentist.

I'll probably freak out, cry and overall make a scene.

Afterward, I plan to give them one of my blog cards, tell them I'm going to write about my experience, then they'll see this "Jim and Lynette" blog, remember who we are, and start calling us by our given names: James and Jeannette.

Bloggers around the world

The cool thing about blogging is that I’ve met lots of interesting people from all over the world. Since I’ve met other bloggers in person only once, technically I “meet” people via a brief online conversation in the form of comments on each other’s blog.

This morning I woke up to a comment from some dude in Italy. Actually, let me clarify that I assume it’s some dude, but I could be wrong. I’m assuming this because his blog is titled “Big Salumeria” which prolly means Big Salami. That sounds like something a guy would write.

Granted, I don’t speak Italian or any other foreign languages (every time I publicly admit that fact, I envision ¾ of the world rolling their eyes at me while thinking, “Dumb American”) but Salumeria sounds a whole lot like salami.

I sure get sidetracked easily.

My point was that I could only understand a couple of things on Big Salami’s blog. The first thing was Dueling Banjos. I’m from the Midwest and it’s kind of required that each person own one copy of Dueling Banjos. So I find it freaking fucking hilarious that of the three songs Big Salami has on his site, one of them is Dueling Banjos!

I’ve seen a Hawaiian Redneck, so maybe he’s an Italian Redneck? DUDE, how cool would that be!?

Well, that was a fleeting thought.

A. Rednecks typically don’t blog. Big Salami blogs.
B. Of the other two songs he posted, one is rap (in English) and the other is some sort of Techno (not English). I know quite a few rednecks and not one of them enjoys rap or techno (English or not).
C. His website includes a Voki. Regardless of their nationality, if a Redneck blogged he would probably post a confederate flag, not a Voki.
D. Big Salami has a widget for the Iraq Body Count, which documents civilians who have died in Iraq. That doesn’t seem very Redneck-y.

Nah, he can’t be a redneck… it’s not possible.

Nearly 350 words later I’m getting to my point.

What really stood out was Big Salami’s Iraq Body Count widget. I’ll be honest, I easily lose track of the death toll in Iraq.

For a quick reminder, please know that Iraqi civilian deaths are around 80,000; US Soldier fatalities are at 3,888; Allied military deaths are at 306; putting total military deaths at 4,194.

I started to go on, but political and war debates aren’t exactly my forte. Just know that the numbers are piling up. Interpret that however you’d like.

I’ve added a widget so you can easily keep the numbers in mind. I also recommend visiting icasualties.org, this page on About.com, Antiwar.com, the Washington Post, and of course, NPR. If you aren’t happy with these recommendations, just Google “Iraq” and find whatever it is you’re looking for.

Oh yeah, if you speak Italian, stop by Big Salumeria for salami-related news.

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Update: Baol explained Big Salami is actually Gino il Salumiere, an Italian poet (cool job title!). And Polle translated Big Salumeria, which "...stands for, more or less (translations some times cannot be accurate), Big Groceryshop. Actually, in Italy, a "salumeria" it's a shop where you can buy all kinds of cold cuts."

11 December 2007

Shopper’s Block

I’ve come down with a case of Shopper’s Block. I have no idea what the hell to buy anyone for Christmas. I’d really like to Git-R-Done! from the comfort of my own home, so I hope those gift ideas start flowing real soon.

Quite oppositely, I made progress on the Christmas tree project. Last night at approximately 8:56 pm, it was completely decorated and the leftover Christmas crap decorations were stored away in the basement.

Our tree is a sad little princess. But if you dim the lights and put your beer goggles on, she looks kinda beautiful.

10 December 2007

Oh Christmas tree, you suck

It doesn’t feel like Christmas. And it’s totally my fault because I decided against putting up a Christmas tree. (Seriously, folks, it’s a lot of work for just the two of us.)

In lieu of a tree, I hung up this goofy candle in the front window and this wreath on the back door.













Look closely at the wreath, my mom made it.

Anyway, I decided that putting up a Christmas tree would cure my holiday blues. “Putting up the tree” turned out to be the total opposite of fun: it sucked.

The suckage began with one of those funny feelings. It came while I was dragging out the boxes of Christmas crap, “wasn’t there something wrong with our Christmas lights? Maybe there are a few burned out or something?”

Ah, yes.

Once I plugged them in the problem became clear: they’re broken.

One strand was totally dead while the other was divided into three segments: half were not working, one-quarter were constantly on and the other quarter flashed. I spent about 20 minutes changing fuses and replacing bulbs, but the status of my lights remained the same: broken.

I tried to run out and buy new lights, but my car is frozen shut and my front tire is low; another roadblock standing between me and a season of joy.

Damn.



Notice there aren’t any wrapped presents near the tree.

Yep, two weeks from today I will be at my parents exchanging gifts and I haven’t bought a thing.


08 December 2007

Tick Tock, People

It doesn’t feel like Christmas, yet the Christmas season is upon us. This actually occurred to me today when I was reminded via a cute little countdown clock that there are only 16 days left to scramble around like a mad-woman, buying presents at the last minute shop.

I’m not ready. In fact, I haven’t even started shopping.

I hate shopping.

Yes, I know, I’m a chic and supposedly all chics love to shop. Not me, I hate it. I also hate ice cream (unless it’s diluted with crumbled Oreos, 50/50) so call me a weirdo.

I shudder at the mere thought of shopping. I don’t envision anything fun or Christmas-like. No joy, none of that crap. In my book, shopping is a modern day form of good old-fashioned human torture.

I love giving things to people, but I hate buying stuff.

I absolutely, positively hate the act of “going shopping.” I hate going from place to place, wandering around, with the sole purpose of looking for stuff to buy. At first online shopping was an awesome alternative, but I soon realized that I’m doing the same thing… surfing from place to place, looking for stuff to buy.

In the end, I’m still buying stuff and I hate to spend money.

The same thing happens every Christmas. James and I set a budget, we save up our little pennies, make a naughty and nice list, and get the whole thing planned. Next, the brakes slam our well-designed plan to a screeching halt. I hate to shop; therefore I won’t put the plan into action.

The week before Christmas James and I will be running around like crazy people buying all kinds of stuff like we’ve won a shopping spree, for others.

Tis the season!

06 December 2007

DUDE!

I cracked open my handy dandy RFT and right there on page 8 is the Local Blog O' the Week: Jeannette Eats Spaghetti!

HOLY FUCK!

Okay, Jeannette E, get a fucking grip. This isn’t anything to get all excited over. Then again, HOLY FUCK! People are reading my ramblings!

That’s right, I said it, the F word. Three times.

You see, in normal conversation I speak like a dude. Specifically, I cuss all the time. And there’s one lesson we’ve all learned in finishing school, cussing is sooo un-ladylike. Also, today’s society holds each person accountable to the highest of moral standards (not) and who knows what kind of ill effect my foul mouth will have on today’s youth.

And thus, I feel like I should censor myself in my blog. In the past I would criticize myself when I’d cuss, thinking, “Hey, dumbass, can’t you come up with anything more intelligent than ‘fuckface?’ At least call that fucker a jerk.”

Doug, I learned something today. I learned that, if used properly, cussing can show emotion, thereby enhancing the spirit and mood of a conversation (or blog). From now on, I’m going to cuss it up. That’s right. It’s my blog and I’ll cuss if I want to, cuss if I want to, cuss if I want to. You would cuss too, if it happened to you.

Dear Today's Youth, get the fuck off my blog so I can speak the way my mom intended: with a potty mouth.

Now where was I?

Oh yeah, that’s right, I became sidetracked after exclaiming HOLY FUCK! My blog made it into the printed edition of the RFT! Sweet!

I’ll probably discover that my mom is the mastermind behind Local Blog O’ the Week.

On her deathbed she’ll confess, “Jeannette, face it, this blog thing isn’t going anywhere. *cough* Nobody gives a crap about what you’re writing. *cough cough* I was behind that whole ‘blog o’ the week’ business back in 2007. It’s just that *cough* you’re an eeediot and your blog never had any direction. *cough* You needed a little ego boost. And I felt sorry for you.”

What the hell am I so excited for anyway? It’s only the RFT. It’s just like, an honorable mention and nothing more. Besides, my mom was behind it all along.

05 December 2007

The Road Less Traveled

I remember the first time I heard of a “family vacation.”

It was seventh grade and I was in Mr. Demolin’s science class. It was three days after we returned from our super-awesome extended winter vacation, except today was Kristie’s first day back to school. And she was really tan.

What the hell?

Kristie’s family extended the already extended vacation - get this - so they could enjoy a nice and long winter escape to Florida. Whoooaaaa, dude! I had no idea people did such things.

A couple years later I had a cool vacation of my own. Over Fourth-of-July weekend, my brother and I took a road trip with my Gramma to visit my aunt and uncle in Kentucky. The next morning we all woke up bright and early, went to some parking lot and got on a bus that took us to Ocoee, TN. There we spent the day white water rafting.

At that point in my life, age 15, I’d have to say white water rafting was the coolest thing I’d ever experienced. While looking for a link I saw the words “Class III and IV rapids.” No wonder I remember it being so damn cool. Also, no wonder I almost fell out of the raft twice.

After that journey, I never ventured too far from St. Louis again until I was 25.

In the last four years I’ve been fortunate to visit a number of places. I’ve been to Wyoming at least five times and, depending on whether or not I drove across I-70 or I-80, I’ve driven across every state between here and there (Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado) three or four times. I’ve also been to southern and central California, Atlanta, DC, Virginia, Indiana, Jackson Hole, Hawaii (Kauai, Maui and the Big Island), San Luis Obispo, CA, Seattle, Tucson, Mexico, and lots of other cities and states in between.

I’ve learned that seeing a place on TV or reading about it in a book is never, ever the equivalent of going there yourself.

That thought really sunk in when I visited San Diego in September 2005. I had seen countless pictures of the ocean and even knew what it sounded like, thanks to TV. But nothing can replace the way I felt upon seeing and touching the ocean for my first time. It was vast and beautiful. I’ll never forget the smell, the sound and the feeling of the cold waves washing over my feet and then pulling the sand from beneath me. It was amazing.

I instantly knew I had been missing out on the world. And every time I travel to a new place, I am reminded that I’ve never really been anywhere.

My point is this: I need to get my ass in gear and start uploading my pictures and writing about my journeys before I forget everything.

Note to self: Dude, get your ass in gear and start uploading your pictures and writing about your journeys before you forget everything. Besides that, you can come up with a gazillion stories by writing about your travel adventures alone, so stop thinking you have nothing to write about.

30 November 2007

So idiotic, it’s almost genius

Thank you, Dwight, for this awesome idea. If it weren’t for you, I’d still think I’m writing at an idiot’s level. As it turns out, my blog’s readability level is genius!

cash advance


That’s right, genius! I couldn’t believe it either, so I did the test twice and both times it came up genius.

After the shock wore off, one thought popped into my mind:

I’m wearing my underwear inside out.

I know it sounds a little weird, but I was. Sure, tomorrow I’ll remember to check and put them on correctly. But give me about two weeks and I’ll make a trip to the loo only to discover my panties are inside out. Again.

Do genius writers occasionally wear their panties inside out? It appears to be some sort of oxy-moron, like, “If you’re such a genius, why can’t you put your underwear on the right way?”

29 November 2007

Beets Me!

For someone who considers herself to be "not much of a food person," I sure enjoy blogging about food.

Today I read an alarming article about 4 Healthy Foods You Should be Eating. Apparently, I’m doomed.

Beets: Unless I have them confused with something else (radishes, maybe?) I’m pretty sure I hate those things. Okay, I just did a little research and yes, I hate beets. Just as I suspected, those are the red and slimy chicken-innards looking things I have removed from my CPK Cobb Salad (and replaced with extra avocado, please).

Cabbage: The only thing better than cabbage, is a cabbage fart. I love cabbage. But it’s not necessarily a regular part of my diet. I eat it like once a month, or barely; whichever is least.

Guava: Okay, I want to say I’m a huge fan, but I’m not. I’ve tried it a couple of times and it’s just not that great.

Swiss Chard: What the heck is a swiss chard? And are there other nationalities of chard? I’ve never even heard of swiss chard. Obviously, it sounds like swiss cheese, but it’s not cheese. It’s a vegetable.

Swiss chard makes me think of pomegranate.

I like to try new fruits and vegetables, which is why we munched rambutan. Buying a pomegranate entered my mind but it was a fleeting thought. Instantly I realized that I had no idea what a pomegranate is or how you eat one. I thought about the gingerroot or rhubarb or whatever that stuff was I bought that one time, and let it go bad because I wasn’t sure how to eat it.

So I put that dude back and went over to familiar foods.

Bad Days and Good Friends

Everybody has a bad day now and then, but not everybody has a good friend to pick them up.

Thanks, Jessica, for stopping by and bringing me one of those coffee-chocolate blended drinks from St. Louis Bread Co. Mmmmm.

Oh, and the bagel with cream cheese, thanks for that, too.

(I didn’t want to pair that with the Mmmmm comment, since I haven’t actually eaten the bagel yet. I’m saving it for lunch.)

27 November 2007

Me Want Coffee

A long, long time ago, back in early September, I wrote about how I was turning into one of those people, you know, the ones who have to drink coffee to function properly?

I'm on a whole new level of coffee addiction.

Back then I was brewing coffee at 12:45 because I skipped it that morning and I needed some coffee, dammit.

Today I'm brewing coffee at 12:45 because I already drank coffee and it wasn't enough. I need more. Dammit.

Me. Want. Coffee.

...brewed with cinnamon and topped off with a generous helping of French Vanilla creamer, please.

26 November 2007

Bare Naked Ladies (and Gentlemen)

Hallelujah! We’re finally going to cover the naked windows.

To be precise, one window is stark naked while the other one is partially nude.

To keep people from seeing in and to minimize the morning glare on my computer screen, I have pieces of newspaper and notebook paper taped to the window (I’m not joking) that faces the alley.

The other window is totally naked.

And that’s the one looking directly into my neighbor’s bedroom. Before you ask, the answer is yes, that guy still watches porn.

When I wrote about it a couple of months ago I thought the guy was on a porn-watching streak, but it’s routine. I see it all the time, almost daily. He watches an even mix of porn, sports, sports news, and Family Guy. Those are his favorites.

Also, he’s been yelling a lot lately. On Friday he was screaming into the phone for a good 45 minutes, promptly followed by 30 minutes of porn.

I know too much.

And that’s why we’re going to install these things.

25 November 2007

In other thankful news

Our Thanksgiving holiday was perfect. We lucked out with two dinners that weren't crammed together on the same day. We were able to catch up with family, eat great food, and relax (although we both worked on Friday, boooooo).

I must give props to my brother. I'm thankful he made it possible for James and myself to spend two hours playing Guitar Hero. I had a great time even though I had to jam with the gimpy guitar. Not only was it freakishly small designed for a small child, the "rock out" function was broken. That was totally frustrating.

Here I am, rocking you like a hurricane, when suddenly I have to stop strumming and press select. Read that again, "...stop strumming and press select." Yep, that's what true rockers do when they're rocking out, press select. And technically speaking, I wasn't able to simply "press select." I was aiming for select, but half the time I pressed pause instead.

In the end, James took on my dead weight and we beat the game (on easy). Gooooo TEAM!

To top off our weekend of Thanksgiving wonderfulness, I discovered that way back on Thursday the RFT Daily Web Crawl gave me an honorable mention/link. It's nothing really, I'm not even mentioned by name. I'm one of three links in a sentence that reads, "Today there are too many thankful local bloggers to count."

I just get all warm and fuzzy inside when I find links to my blog. Not only am I worth reading, I'm worth mentioning and/or linking to. How cool is that!?

21 November 2007

Thinking about thankfulness

Hopefully at this time tomorrow I will still be sitting around with my pants unzipped, recovering from a well-deserved gorging via Thanksgiving goodies. Besides good food (that I'm not cooking, thanks Mom and Gramma), what else am I thankful for?

I've given this a lot of thought and of course, I had a hard time moving past things like, my awesome husband, my family, my health, my families health, and other traditional/boring answers. Besides the usual, what else is there to be thankful for?

Will Ferrell.

That's right. Will Ferrell.

He always puts a smile on my face.

Check him out with his rough and tough toddler daughter landlord, Pearl. And after you've watched the video, visit the outtakes - they're worth a look-see!

20 November 2007

That feeling

Do you ever get that feeling, the one you get when you're standing in the kitchen and look up at the ceiling only to notice water dripping from a sagging area that looks like it could crack open at any moment? (To help you understand that feeling, realize this particular area of the kitchen ceiling is directly below the toilet in our upstairs and only bathroom.)

Gulp!

Hopefully this incident will not turn into a horrendous-now-but-we'll-look-back-at-this-and-laugh situation.

19 November 2007

7 Things

At some point I planned to copy an idea from someone's blog (can't remember who) where they wrote ‘from A to Z, about me’ (this person actually skipped N, so their Bio should be titled 'A-M and O-Z, about me'). But the longer I procrastinate, the more '26' begins to sound like 'a lot'.

The other day I was tagged by this guy to write 7 Things About Me You Might Not Know. Sounds like a better plan, so I'll just go with a more manageable amount of personal facts: seven. And by the way, like it or love it, I'm actually writing things that you might or might not know about me.

1. For some reason, the spelling, pronouncing and remembering of my first name can only be described as habitually butchered. If someone takes a wild guess at spelling my name I'm lucky if they just leave out an N. It usually ends up looking like Ginett, or Jenet. Even worse, no one can remember my name so I am typically referred to as Jennifer, Janelle, Janis, Gina, and once I got a Lucille. (Jeannette, Lucille. I hear the resemblance.)

2. I drive fast. I can't help it. My parents do it, too, which means I'm genetically inclined to speed. And peel out. And do donuts and e-slides.

3. My car needs new tires. Bad. I know it's a result of what I just said in number two (he he, I said ‘number two’).

4. I was a vegetarian for 14 years. Actually, I was a junk-etarian because yeah, I didn't eat meat, but I also didn't eat fruit or vegetables too often. I became burnt out on salads within the first two years and after that, there's not too much food left in this world - or so I thought at the time. Taco Bell became my staple diet because you can substitute refried beans for meat on almost any menu item.

5. Now that I'm a reformed junk-etarian you might want to ask, what's my favorite meaty food? Steak? Lamb? Chicken? Blah, blah, blah and yuck, yuck, yuck. No thanks, my first choice is a cheeseburger. Mmmm, mmmmm tasty. Or maybe a meatball. One of those two hamburger products. Next in line is a hot dog. That's right, a hot dog. I don't eat them very often and I don't love every brand, but the Cardinal Hot Dog is my favorite. Believe me, I don't understand it myself. I never thought I'd eat an asshole and like it, yet I have. It's all ground up and squished back together into an indescernible texture. Mmmm, yummy... grill me a dog and pass it my way!

6. While we're being gross, you might be interested to know I love a good fart joke.

7. Poop is funny, too.

16 November 2007

Here a MOO, there a MOO

At the suggestion of a graphic designer friend of mine, I made homemade business cards. I bought some perforated paper and tried a whole bunch of fancy fonts, font colors and varied the layout. I printed off several sheets, tore them apart and to make them a little different, I resized them (with a razor, ruler and kitchen cutting board). In the end, they looked, well, like they were cheap little homemade business cards. I hated them. Every time I handed one out I felt embarrassed.

Via my flickr account, I kept seeing ads for MOO MiniCards. The MiniCards are like tiny business cards (maybe 1/3 the size of a normal business card). Besides the little-and-cute factor, I was attracted to the cards because I can decorate them with a photo I've taken. Actually, I can order every single card with a different picture. Cool!

I ordered them and immediately began pacing. Once the estimated arrival date came and went, I became frustrated. Every day I would check the mail, find no MOO cards and exclaim, "Where's my damn MOO cards!?" (Officer, I swear, it was the impatience that drove me to cuss.)

One day I received an email from a guy at MOO (not one of those automatically generated messages, it was from an actual guy named Dan M) that explained what was taking so long. Apparently, when they did a quality check they found a few cards missing. They had no idea which ones were missing (probably because I ordered 38 different designs, literally) so they decided to reprint the order and send me both the complete and incomplete boxes.

It felt like forever, but nine days later my MOO cards arrived! And, duh, you eeediot, the MOO cards had to travel from London. Had I known that, I might not have impatiently waited.

Moral of the story:

The MOO cards are a little expensive, 25 cents each if you include shipping and handling, but they are great quality, very unique and everyone seems to love them. I'm very happy with the cards and they make great conversation.

"Oh that photo, that's where James and I stopped for lunch when we went on a seventeen mile ocean kayaking trip along Na Pali Coast in Kauai."

"Oh that photo, that's a wild chicken."

15 November 2007

Man Man Rocked Rocked

Considering how much I was looking forward to Modest Mouse, I almost hate to say it, but Man Man totally stole the show with their ultra-energetic and circus-like vibe.

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Now Playing: Man Man - Black Mission Goggles
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14 November 2007

Year of the Mouse

Regardless of what I am doing, I always listen to music. I love discovering new talent and rediscovering music I haven’t heard in a while. James and I share this passion.

Music plays a huge part in our life and it always has, for both of us. Come to think of it, the first purchase we made after I moved in was a computer - specifically to combine our music and attempt to organize our out-of-control CD collection. That task is still not complete.

I digress.

You know that Chinese calendar, the one that assigns an animal to each year? If they used a mouse (as opposed to a rat) 2007 would be its year. And that mouse would be modest.

Wondering what the heck I’m talking about?
Let me get right to the point.

2007 has been the year of Modest Mouse.

I am obsessed.
I can’t get enough.
I listen to them every day.

And tonight my obsession will finally pay off.
I am going to the Pageant to see Modest Mouse!!!

...let's hope I don't get Black Crowed again.

13 November 2007

Ramblings of an Eeediot

I have a habit of taking notes while I’m on the phone. Early in the conversation, part of my brain switches to automatic pilot and I begin to jot down random comments made by myself or the person at the other end of the phone.

This morning I sat down to begin working. And just as I start to shuffle some papers around, I notice a note to self that says:

Do you understand how, what you just said, could totally like, piss me off?

Yep, I said that.

…to someone in my doctor’s office.

I’m an eeediot.

This is merely one example, of many, where I say or do something that is kind of inappropriate. Telling that dude he just pissed me off, followed by a gentle explanation why, was a totally effective tactic. Could I have chosen different words?

Nope. I was really pissed.

08 November 2007

What will they think of next?

Apparently, tainting our toothpaste is a thing of the past. China has moved on to bigger and badder projects, introducing the world to Aqua Dots laced with the date rape drug GHB.

You're probably thinking, "Stop the presses! What on earth is an Aqua Dot?" Apparently they are tiny plastic balls that can be arranged into shapes (probably something girly like a pony or heart). The object is to then spray them with water so they magically stick together.

The kicker is, the same chemical that makes the dots stick together also metabolizes into GHB when ingested. How weird-o is that? If you eat a few Aqua Dots, your body somehow manages to turn them into Gama Hydroxybutyric Acid (GHB).

It seems that today we are buying all sorts of unneccessary crap. And all that junk seems to contain crazy chemicals that yield unpredictable results. Do we really need scientists working feverishly in the lab to invent a substance that, when sprayed with water, will adhere to other like substances?

Probably not.

07 November 2007

Let the food theme continue

Talking about food over the last couple of blogs yielded me quite a few comments and emails. I’ll try to respond to all of them – with some pictures.

Here I go…


Uncle Jemima’s Pure Mash Liquor

My last post included a picture of a beer. A few people asked about it and although a hilarious guess by Dwight Wannabe, I was not drinking Uncle Jemima’s Pure Mash Liquor.

I was drinking a St. Bernardus Abt 12, a Belgian Abby Ale.

True to the slogan (and a 10.5% alcohol content), St. Bernardus does in fact Bring Heavenly Nectar Within Reach.


Spaghetti

I love spaghetti. It is my favorite dinner, mostly because I can have a meatball for breakfast the next day. That’s right; my love for meatballs surpasses my love for spaghetti. This picture shows Sunday night’s dinner (on the left) and Monday morning’s breakfast (one of the meatballs on the right).


Rambutan

Have you ever heard of a Rambutan? What about lychee? Or longan?

I’ve been hooked on lychee since we went to Kauai in June (tasty dudes, they sure are). Ever so often lychee shows up at Trader Joe’s or the Soulard Market, so I’m always on the lookout. On Monday, I spotted an intriguing looking fruit with a spiny exterior - Rambutan. Once I read it was related to the lychee, I was sold.

My humble opinion: It’s a little expensive and a lot of work for a little bit of fruit. But if you love lychee, it’s totally worth the effort.


Homemade Fixins

So you won’t get the wrong impression, there’s more to my diet than frozen pizza, watermelon, coffee and beer. We make a lot of home cooked meals.

Yesterday I made homemade chicken and dumplings. (My friends and family won’t believe me, so of course, I took a few pictures.)



In addition to the dumplings, I also made (from scratch) The Best Fudge Brownies Ever. They really were the best ever!

04 November 2007

More Food

Okay, I might not have the diet of a five year old, but when left to my own devices I definitely eat like a teenager. After having watermelon and coffee for breakfast yesterday morning, I ate a late lunch that consisted of Totino's Mexican Pizza, tater tots covered with a slice of American cheese and a beer.

I'm aware of the possibility that my pizza is contaminated with E. coli, but it's so yummy I ate it anyway. I'll take my chances.

Lunch/Dinner

03 November 2007

Coffee and Watermelon

I had coffee and watermelon for breakfast today.

Coffee and Watermelon

James says I eat like a five year old, but only an adult (me) without other adult supervision (James) eats a breakfast like that.

02 November 2007

The Story of Spaghetti

James is an avid creator of rhyming nicknames. This hobby dates back to his early years as a punk kid. To annoy his younger sister, he called her Julie Poolie the Magical Foolie.

The way Julie explained it, this nickname brought her to a whole new level of pissed-off-ness. She can laugh about it now, but back then a mere utterance of the phrase filled her with intense rage.

Goofy nickname
+ Any reaction
= Way cool and awesome lifelong hobby


Let the nicknaming begin

Nickname is another word for pet name, so I’ll list a few Pet Name Creations a la James.

Our dog, Nico, is also known as Nico Double Bico.
Which was subsequently shortened to Double Bico.
And Bico.
Next evolved Double Stuff.
Then Stuff.
Then Double Stuff Bico.
Double Stinko.
Double Sneako.

Jeannette is a safe name. It doesn’t rhyme with much and I have only twice successfully incorporated 'Jeannette' into a song of some sort. (Okay, this isn’t exactly the same as Nico Double Bico nicknaming, but it’s kind of in the same ballpark parking lot.)

Exhibit A:
Sung to the theme of a Gillette razor commercial
*Jea-nnette!* The best! A man! Can geeet!

Exhibit B:
Sung to the theme of The White Stripes: I’m Lonely (But I Ain’t That Lonely Yet)
She's homely, and she's cranky
And her **name is Jea-nnette**.


*Gillette* was replaced with *Jeannette*.
**Hair's in a net** was replaced with ** name is Jea-nnette**.


What else can you do with Jeannette?

Leave it to a professional to rhyme my name with Spaghetti. It’s simple, really. Just tack on a Long E to the end of my first name and I become Jeannette-E Spaghetti.

If only the E were short for something. Then it can also be like a pen name or something, ya know, Jeannette E. Spaghetti. If only.

I KNOW! Eats! Jeannette Eats Spaghetti!

Sa-WEET! I now have a middle name to go with that middle initial.

Then I wanted to blog.

For a long time I was hesitant because I don’t have a niche. I don’t have one thing that I’m totally motivated by, totally focused on. Everyone seems to be focused on their family, or work, or the news, politics, whatever. I’m the opposite of focus. I’m all over the place. I like a wide variety of topics. I like whatever. And I love Spaghetti.

Jeannette Eats Spaghetti …then blogs about whatever.

I like it.

I might just wear it ‘til it stinks.

01 November 2007

Funny Stuff, Man

At this very moment, someone in the world is sporting a T-shirt that says, "Every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten."

Turns out, they're wrong.
The saying should read something like this:

Every time you masturbate,
you will be rewarded with a 3 Musketeers candy bar.

The Whack-A-Cock Masturbatory Advent Calendar (WAC-MAC) is one of the funniest things I've seen in quite a while. Thanks, Mental Poo! You've made my day!

I'm Going Un-Pink

Now that we're out of Breast Cancer Month, my blog is going un-pink. The problem is, I don't really have a personal theme and although I've only been blogging since August, I'm already bored with the standard templates.

I've been thinking about contacting a professional. Before I do, does anyone have any advice on what they've done, or who has helped them develop an original look for their blog?

Also, if anyone can tell me why they prefer Blogger over WordPress or any other blogging platform, please do. WordPress seems to be rather popular so I've been thinking of moving my blog over there. Before I do something drastic, it's prolly better to seek out a little advice.

Okey Dokey, new found blogging buddies, comment away.....

30 October 2007

I'm Coming Out

The problem with leaving comments on websites and blogs is that it causes me to write weird things and make goofy or obscure references. Once I quoted Zig Ziglar. Apparently, I hadn’t come down from the motivational high of attending a Get Motivated seminar with my then-colleagues.

In lieu of posting unnecessary and rambling comments on my favorite sites, I’m outing myself as a lurker by adding a list of Blogs I peep (yoo hoo, guys, it’s a new category buried in the Right Column). Some blogs I read more than others, but these are a few I’ve enjoyed lately.

Eventually I plan to add a list of random websites I visit regularly. It will help give my audience a more complete picture of the weirdo I am.

29 October 2007

Hi-Ho Cherry-O, A blogging we will go

Friday night was a blast! James and I showed up early to meet with Jeremy and take full advantage of our SIP Club membership. After a quick dinner, all three of us crashed the STL Blogger Gathering. Even though no one had any previous clue that we existed, we were immediately welcomed into the crowd.

I enjoyed meeting the faces behind some of the random blogs I read (but never comment on) and when mixed together, the variety of people held some interesting, weird and funny conversations. Raquita summed it up best by saying, “Trust me you had to be there.”

I’m looking forward to another gathering, though I am convinced that Liz should host the next Kick Ass Blogger Party.

26 October 2007

Bloggers and Beer

Tonight is the much-anticipated STL Blogger Gathering at Schlafly Bottleworks in Maplewood and of course, I woke up on the wrong side of the bed in super crab ass mode. James did everything he could to calm the ‘situation’ but I wasn’t having any of that smiling-and-happy-BS.

Fast forward one hour and two large cups of coffee later…

I’m lurking around to see who I can expect at tonight’s gathering and stumble upon a list of people I can’t wait to meet. Feeling blah, I sadly thought to myself, “I want to be a person someone can’t wait to meet.” Then BAM!

Jeannette Eats Spaghetti was right there on the list! SWEET!

Thanks Marijean, you put a smile on my face!

25 October 2007

Oh, Make Me Over

As a chic, my womanly supplies su-diddily-uck.

My makeup is old. I haven’t bought new eye shadow in a year and I’ve used the same blush since December 2004. I don’t even own foundation. Or lipstick. Instead, I use Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer (tinted chapstick), for ya know, when I’m trying to sex-up my smile.

I have long hair. I always have. Yet I only know how to style it about four different ways. ‘Using a different barrette’ constitutes as one of those style variations. My curling iron and blow dryer are at least ten years old. The room smells of burnt-something when I use either of them. I don’t have top quality hair products to tame my waves and on any humid day, my hair ends up looking frizzy and out-of-control like Cameron Diaz in Being John Malkovitch.

I have a horrible wardrobe. I own a few select items that fit properly and thus, I wear them over and over again. I’m hanging on to clothes from nine years ago, a time when I weighed less than 110 pounds.
I’m 29. I no longer have the body of a teenager; I have womanly curves, which means my old clothes are too small. And it’s no secret that small or otherwise ill-fitting clothes can lower a woman’s self-esteem.

I don’t have any accessories. Sure, I have a few necklaces and bracelets, but I need purses, belts, scarves, jewelry and so on. If I am lucky enough to put together a semi-cute outfit, I can’t accessorize. Even my shoe collection sucks. Again, I’m hanging onto things that need to be thrown out.

And while we’re on the subject of a total makeover, aren’t I supposed to have a huge trunk full of sexy bras, panties and lingerie?

The saga continues

Due to my lackluster wardrobe I never know what to wear. It does not matter the occasion, I have to ask James for advice about how I should dress. The other day he finally said, “I’m a man. I don’t want to answer questions like, ‘What should I wear?’ You’re a chic, you should know that stuff.”

The problem is I don’t know that stuff. I never know what to wear. I never seem to have anything appropriate. To cope, I’m learning tricks to get around my persistent fashion dilemma.

This morning my friend Jessica picked me up to go for a workout. Of course, I didn’t know what to wear so I asked,
“Are you wearing yoga pants?” ---No, I’m wearing Capris.
“Tank top or t-shirt?” ---Two tanks, actually.
“Did you put your hair up? Bun or ponytail?” ---Ponytail.

Of course when she picked me up I had my hair pulled back into a ponytail, was wearing Capri pants and two layered tank tops.

I had no other options, I swear.

23 October 2007

Picnic in Forest Park

Stop by my flickr page to see a few pictures from Sunday.
James and I took advantage of the beautiful fall day and went for a walk through Forest Park.

Picnic

Although I didn't get photos of these events, they deserve honorable mention:

There was an ambulance outside of the reception being held at the World's Fair Pavilion. As we passed by, I heard the ambulance driver say to a cop, "...old guy fell down...."

We passed a woman hula-hooping in her backyard. She spotted us, waved, and kept on girating her hips. I know she was just exercising but the the whole interaction was still kinda weird, in a cool way.

I really wanted to snap a photo, but it would have been rude.

22 October 2007

I heart typos!

I hate making mistakes, but I sure love to find the typos and misspellings of others. In fact, one of my biggest accomplishments was finding the word Jerusalem misspelled in the Bible; they forgot to include the R.

To even the score, my typo-low-point occurred when I sent out my first ‘big’ survey and asked, “Would you like to shcedule an on-site visit?” The error slipped by unnoticed by me and three other proofreaders. The very first response had my transposition circled in thick, black marker. I couldn’t friggin’ believe it!

Tonight I was looking for random St. Louis Halloween activities and I noticed a nice typo on the Lemp Mansion website. They wrote “22st Annual Lemp Mansion Halloween Party” (actually, the typo is within a graphic).

Yesss! Found one!

Machine-Gun-Leg Chic: The Movie

After seeing the preview I’ll be the first to admit I was intrigued. I wanted to see a movie about a chic with a machine gun for a leg. Planet Terror was no disappointment. It was unexpectedly awesome and sent me on an emotional roller coaster, bringing forth every mood, reaction and sensation I possess.

First it was boring, then sexy, intriguing, brutal, cheesy, ironic, weird, disgusting and hilarious, in that order. The movie is bizarre, full of twists and turns with lots of guns, explosions, action and fighting. Characters range from the average-Joe, to biochemical-infected flesh-eating zombies, crazy babysitter twins, demented doctors, military men, lesbians, a restaurant owner with a secret BBQ recipe, a go-go dancer and more! Emotions come and go in random and unsuspecting order as you’re grossed out, in suspense, upset, afraid, disturbed, thrilled – it never ends!

Now before you watch the movie, realize that as much as it’s intriguing, fun and hilarious, it’s more weird, violent and gross. Be prepared for lots of death, blood and squirting pus (eww), along with gory zombie attacks, a sack of dismembered testicles, a dog being run over by a truck… well, I don’t want to give the movie away. Just prepare yourself for totally disgusting, yet humorous and pleasing weirdness.

Once you’ve seen the movie, can you report back and give me a theory or two about how Cherry Darling fired her machine gun leg? She just raised her leg, aimed and it fired. …A triggerless gun with perfect timing? Come on, that seems a little ridiculous.

19 October 2007

Never before seen footage

I’ve been a little too focused on one project for the last few weeks and as a result I have slacked on both my flickr account and RezHub gig.

Last night I made up for lost time and added a variety of never before seen photos from our Hawaii trip. Ironically, pictures that I posted more than a month ago are lucky to have six or seven views; of the photos I posted last night, one in particular has been viewed more than 100 times! And it isn’t even scandalous!

I regret avoiding bikini shots while in Hawaii. To make up for it I’ll have to invest in some push-up bras and cleavage-enhancing shirts. That seems to be the most effective way of increasing my page views.

16 October 2007

The time I got ‘Black Crowed’

Last year, James and I went to a much anticipated Black Crowes concert. During the how-many-days-until-the-show countdown, for the prior 45 days or so, it was Black Crowe City. I listened to them every single day and couldn’t stop thinking about the upcoming show. I was more than just stoked, I was way stoked!

We arrive at the Pageant and as the bouncers check our ID (we look totally immature), they mention something about “perfect timing.” The crowd began cheering, the band started to play… and so begins the three hours long, ALL Black Crowes show! Freak yeah! I’m pumped! I’m ready to ROCK!

By the time we hit intermission I was confused. I flashed James a perplexed look and asked, “Do you know any of these songs? I’ve never heard any of this music.” His response, “Some fan you are.”

For the entire three hour concert, I rocked out to awesome, yet foreign, music. How the hell did that happen? The answer involves simple math, which I will attempt to make complicated. My answer is so ridiculous that it might just be the best run-on sentence ever. Scratch that, you have to check out the Run-on Sentence Uncyclopedia page. Now back to my bad sentence…

In between the random-band-member interchanges, breakups and get-back-togethers, The Black Crowes managed to release 13 singles, 12 albums, a box set (which repeated their first four albums and added five extra songs), then take into consideration that they like to re-record and re-release songs, it makes the math kind of hard to do, but I’m guesstimating they’ve released about 187 songs (since they are included in the box set, I excluded their first four albums; if you add them in again, they’ve released 253 songs, 66 of them twice) – herein lies the problem, we own approximately 34 songs or less (James, can you add up the number of songs we owned on the day of that concert and give me an exact figure, please, for the sake of correctness).

To sum up that unnecessary sentence, The Black Crowes released a lot more songs than what we owned at the time. I will never again watch an awesome band perform, while rocking out in total oblivion. For the love of Science H. Lojic, I will never get ‘Black Crowed’ again.

15 October 2007

Hide the Evidence!

Although I didn’t drink a drop yesterday, this morning I woke up and kind of felt hung over. How is that possible? I know we went on a three-day drinking binge, but sheesh. I didn’t realize it was going to take an additional three days for me to recover.

And for some strange reason I didn’t take one single picture while we were in Iowa. Then again, it’s not easy to capture the fun. Like when I saw strange-man balls… twice. Really, what do I take a picture of? The balls? Or would it be more appropraite to take a self-portrait of me in hysterical laughter as a drunken so-and-so walks around the bar with his hairy balls hanging out, just to get a reaction?

Ahhh, good times.

It was a much-needed getaway. Everyone was so great, so fun and so incredibly nice. Outside of Tyson, I had never met any of James’ college friends. Yet, no one made me feel like a newcomer or outsider. I felt welcome and loved by every single person. What more can you want? Actives and alumni brought together - instantly lifelong friends - because they are part of a fraternity.

I must take a moment to give special props to the pregnant wives who acted as our designated drivers. Thanks for making sure we all got home safely!!!

13 October 2007

Iowa or Bust

I'm in Iowa, suffering from the brown bottle flu. Ugh.

James and I came to visit his college friends and have been drinking. A lot. For the last few days I've been teetering between drunk-fun, and recovering from said fun. It's nice to let loose, forget our adult responsibilities and party like we're underage.

In just a few short hours I will be obliterated. Again.

One more day of that pleasant hangover feel and it'll be back to business as usual.

10 October 2007

14 Years Without You

MySpace has been a great tool to help me stay in contact with family and friends. Not only that, but because of the random things people post, I am always learning new and interesting facts about their life. Although sometimes the details can be rather heartbreaking.

This morning I logged onto MySpace to check on a few friends. Several of them mention Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but one person in particular stood out because she posted a picture of her mother with the caption, “14 years without you.” Sarah is only 23. That means she lost her mother when she was 9 years old.

Wow.

I have known lots and lots of people who have been affected by a wide variety of cancers. Sadly, very few of them have survived. Somehow I don’t know anyone who’s had breast cancer, so I’ve decided to Go Pink for October in memory of Sarah’s mom.

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). The goal is simply to educate and bring awareness to breast cancer.

Early detection offers the best chance for survival. Breast cancer tumors develop slowly and by the time a lump is felt it may have been in development for as long as ten years. Screening begins at home with a monthly breast self-exam. The most effective detection tool is a mammography and it is recommended that women over 40 have a mammogram each year. The rules change if you are considered high risk, so talk to your doctor if you have a family history of breast cancer.

Visit any of the links below to learn more.

American Cancer Society
National Breast Cancer Foundation
BreastCancer.org
Susan G. Komen for the Cure
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Answers.com Breast Cancer Guide


08 October 2007

You Eeediot!

I consider myself to be of normal intelligence, maybe even slightly above average, but from time to time I do really dumb things.

On Saturday, I learned that my finger is not necessarily the best way to measure temperature. Like many injuries, this one occurred in the kitchen. I was about to cook lunch and began to wonder if a pan was hot. It was supposed to be hot; after all, it was on a burner for several minutes. That should have been my first clue NOT to touch it, but the pan didn’t really look hot - as if pans look a certain way when they’re heated up.

So I touched it.

Actually, I didn’t just touch it. I applied full pressure and poked the pan like it was the Pillsbury Dough Boy. The pan turned out to be very, very, very hot. And now the whole end of my finger is a blister.

The weird part about this is that I poked with my middle finger. Most people poke things with their pointer finger. Apparently, I don’t. And I have a blister to prove it.

06 October 2007

Makin’ Bacon

Visit my articles posted on RezHub.com. My writings are in the Travel Experts Forum under the handle Adventurous.

After you read an article, click one of the links to the right. They are located in a box titled “Ads by Google.” I get paid per click, but I think it’s something like 42 clicks equal a penny, so every click counts.

Check back often as I am posting several articles each week. While you’re in the neighborhood, revisit some of my other articles, even if you’ve already read them.

Open them. Increase the number of views.

Click the links on the right.

Your clicks will turn into my bacon.

So please, for the love of bacon, GET CLICKING!

04 October 2007

Mr. Sandman, bring me a dream

I thought that only Santa had a naughty list, but apparently you do, too. And my name is right at the top.

Come on, Mr. Sandman, isn’t it your job to make sure people like me get rest? Where have you been? For several days I’ve been walking around in a sleepy-stupor, feeling agitated and tired.

Please don’t make me toss and turn, wide awake for hours and hours, wondering where you are. If you come by tonight and sprinkle your magic sand over my eyes, I’ll forgive your seemingly lack of concern for my rest and well-being. Until then…

If you see the sandman, punch that dude in the head for me.

02 October 2007

Laziest. Weekend. Ever.

It’s not that I’ve been sooo busy that I couldn’t find the time to update my blog. I’ve just been too lazy to do it. I’ve also been too lazy to do most anything else outside of keeping up with daily chores. And I’ve barely done that. Here it is, Tuesday, and I’m still recovering from the Laziest. Weekend. Ever.

It all started on Saturday morning. James and I were up bright and early to head to Collinsville for some kind of home show thing. I wish I had a better description of the event, but we never even made it out of St. Louis. We stopped for a yummy breakfast at our favorite dive, Courtesy Diner. Over eggs, biscuits and gravy we decided to make a quick stop at Sports Authority… which is conveniently located next to James’ favorite store: Best Buy.

It was here that we took advantage of every sale and special Best Buy had to offer, walking out with more movies than we needed. I’m not even sure if we made it outside of the building when we decided that we just HAD to get home to start a movie marathon. It wasn’t even 10:30 in the morning.

We raced home and popped in Trainspotting followed immediately by Knocked Up. (Dear Jeremy, Knocked Up did not suck. It is your movie critiquing skills that S. U. C. K. suck.) After that we started the Roast of William Shatner, the extended and uncensored version. It turns out that the uncensored part was way cool while the extended part way sucked. We totally lost steam after a half-baked Farrah Fawcett took the podium and fumbled every joke. Our excitement ended and so did the marathon.

First thing the next morning (albeit, a later start than the previous day) we watched The Illusionist. Feeling guilty for wasting the weekend away, we began to dust, vacuum and mop. While the floor was drying we pondered our waiting yard work. Pull weeds? Mow grass? Nah, let’s watch Back to School. And so we did.

What’s the moral of this story? There is no moral or lesson to be learned. We’ve been working like maniacs, burning the candle at both ends and needed a break. No work. No house projects. No plans to go here and there. We just needed to participate in some good, old-fashioned laziness.

27 September 2007

Prepare for Liftoff

The RezHub gig has started. At this moment, I have two articles posted and about 8 others in the works. I can’t seem to focus. Otherwise I’d have four or five articles complete and only ONE in the works. Geez, woman! …Fo-cus! …Fo-cus!

On Tuesday, I had an online meeting and received a virtual-ton of information so that I can actually do some work that will lead to a deposit into my checking account. I’m happy and eager to work on this project. It will be a great learning experience, challenging and involving lots of effort, but I am way stoked about it!

For the record, I tried to find a better way to word my feelings other than “way stoked,” but the best suggestion the thesaurus had was “raring to go.” Sure, I’ve used that phrase. Or better said, I’m sure at some point I’ve used that phrase although I can’t imagine when or why I’d say that. “Way stoked” sounds unprofessional (unless you’re in Hawaii) but that’s just the way I talk, dude.

I digress.

So on Tuesday I went to bed stoked and on Wednesday woke up raring to go. (I’m trying to expand my vocabulary, but dude, that phrase sounds totally weird. And stuff.) Sorry, I’ll digress again.

Yesterday, when I needed my PC the most, it decided to get all moody and not let me open Word. Or open a web page. Or open the task manager. I said please and thank you, but no matter how politely I asked, the computer wouldn’t do anything for me. It was shooting down every suggestion I had.

So, I unplugged the uncooperative beast and while trying to hold back a flood of curse words yelled “HA!!” I have no idea why. I restarted my PC and after more than an hour of warming up, a Norton message popped up to rock my world and show me exactly why I need to renew my anti virus software T-T-T-TODAY JUNIOR! This reminder was some sort of monstrous file that occupied every ounce of brain space my computer has to offer.

My computer hasn’t been acting right for some time now, so I knew it was up to something. I just didn’t know it joined “Team Norton” to plot against me. Apparently, I had a mere 36 hours before Norton really turned on me. It already wasn’t letting me do anything I wanted, so I can’t imagine what would happen next. I took action and did the only logical thing - dropped that zero to get with a hero, by downloading a new anti virus software (we’ll see how it goes before I mention any names).

Norton fought me with fierce resistance, but I extracted him from my PC. No Norton, no more. Ahhh; deep belly breathing… breathe in… now out…. Relax, I fixed my computer. The battle is over. And I have a skill to add to my resume (yeah right).

Better yet, now when my computer is running, it doesn’t sound like there’s a rocket in my office gearing up for blast off.

24 September 2007

Whistle while you (wait for) work

I haven’t written anything about work lately, so I thought I would give my regular readers (AKA, my mom) an update.

My big-time, ongoing and paying gig that I wrote about last month has not started. The good news is I know these people are serious about using me for a lot of work over a long period of time. They are in continual contact with me, keeping me informed of what they’re doing and why things are taking longer than expected. Plus, on Friday they invited me to work on their business plan!

The better news is that I have been hired as a Travel Writer! Based on their job description I thought I would be one of several writers, if hired. As it turns out, I beat 24 other candidates for the position! The best part is that I was hired as a subcontractor, which means I will have a 1099 and can write off my travel expenses! I just started so you won’t find much, but you can look for my articles on the Travel Expert's Forum at RezHub.com.

I feel confident that my patience will pay off and before I know it, the paychecks will come rolling in. At the same time I’m frustrated because I’m not bringing home the bacon. I have a fixed amount of bacon that is slowly being eaten away by my monthly bills.

I need more bacon.

22 September 2007

Neighborhood Watch

We live in the city. Our houses are very close together and when I look out certain windows, I'm looking directly into my neighbor's window.

For the last few nights one of my neighbors has been on a porn-watching streak. Sure, he has some level of privacy since his furniture is positioned where I can't actually see him sprawled out on the bed, but I still know a little too much. I watched the guy skip over the boring parts then back up to re-watch the good stuff. What else could he be doing? I know that dude was beating it.

I started to think about how all of this was working, logistically. I mean, have you ever tried to rub your belly in a circle with one hand, while patting your head with the other? It's virtually impossible. This dude had his remote in one hand and his you-know-what in the other, simultaneously operating two totally different pieces of machinery. Now that's coordination.

As funny as all of this sounds, it should be a lesson to me. The window I was staring out of does not have curtains; it's just as naked as the porn stars on my neighbor's TV.

20 September 2007

Brain Drain Strikes Again

We’ve been so busy for the last week that I haven’t had any free time to write about what we’ve been doing. Now that I have a moment to myself, I have writer’s block.

Despite having brain farts all day, I managed to upload 15 photos of Tuesday’s canoe trip on the Current River.

The river is beautiful and serene.

Most of the brochure pictures show the river jam-packed with people, all having a great time. Personally I love to canoe during the week when the rivers are mostly void of human life, making it quiet and possible to observe lots of fish, snakes, turtles, deer, and a variety of birds and other animals.

During our 8-mile float we ran into people only twice: once we saw a group of guys having lunch on a gravel bar and further down the river we saw a guy fishing. That was it. The rest of the time we had the river to ourselves, a great reward for canoeing on a mid-September Tuesday.

The Current River has become my favorite canoe spot since James introduced me to both the river and canoeing. It started a couple months after we met when he took me to Baptist Camp for a Taco Bell lunch. We sat on the ground next to the river, watching a few kids catch crawdads.

It sounds corny, but immediately the river felt special.

My appreciation grew even more fond last summer, when we canoed from Baptist Camp to Two Rivers. Our journey was roughly five days and 51 miles of leisurely paddling, mixed in with a little bit of hiking and climbing to view caves and points of historical interest – camping at random spots along the way. What an awesome trip!

In any case, I’m rather tired and seem to be, well, too tired to focus and write great stuff. I think I’ll use the rest of the evening for mindless work. I really need to redo my blog links, so they open in a new tab or window. I knew I wanted that to happen, but for whatever dumb reason I neglected to make that happen. Instead, the link opens in the same window, thus replacing my blog. That’s not good. I have to fix that and lucky for me, my blog is still new so I don’t have that many links to worry about.

Duh, Jeannette.

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