Thursday, August 30

Blah, blah, blah, dildos

I've got to tell you, I don't have much for you today by way of blogging topics. And really, the only interesting picture I could find online was this very colorful display of colorful dildos.

Wednesday, August 29

Another toasty day

Well, as I (and several meteorologists) predicted yesterday, today was Phoenix's 29th day of temperatures hotter than 110 degrees. Was it ever. So now we'll just go on crushing heat records until the end of the summer, which, here, means some time in October. Another two months of this, can you believe it?
Nothing of interest really happened today. How sad is that? Sydney and I made our way over to the mall to return a t-shirt, wandered amongst some of the stores, enjoyed some Panda Express for lunch, and walked out without a single shopping bag. Now that's sad!

Tuesday, August 28

It'll be 88 in Honolulu tomorrow

ITEM!: I've had the most lovely conversation with Tara tonight. In fact, we're chatting online right now. She's awesome. Truly. I so wish that so may of you in my blogosphere could meet her. And I'll tell you something else: She's moving to Hawaii with her new husband this winter! How jealous am I? Ridiculously!
The weird thing is that Brian's dental license is good in Hawaii, and he's all for a move there. It sounds great, but I just couldn't be that far away from the family again, you know? Although, I do see Sydney and I quite comfortably hanging out on the beach, weaving palm frond hats for the tourists.
ITEM!: Today, Phoenix tied the record for amount of days in a year with temperatures more than 110 degrees. Yep, this is where we live. Everywhere we go, the temperature records fall. Today was the 28th day of 2007 with a high temperature of more than 110 degrees. Tomorrow should set the new record, as it is forecasted to hit 111 degrees.
ITEM!: I did not get up early, nor stay up that late, to watch the lunar eclipse this morning. Because of this, I suck. Gone are the days when being able to see this wonder would have been the dare I needed to go an evening without sleep. Now, I didn't think twice about missing it because I need the sleep to keep up with a 10-month-old crawler. My, how things have changed.
ITEM!: Oh, and I totally think that the senator from Idaho is gay. Only gay men know what the little signals are to catch some illicit tail from one place to the next. Old senators from states in the middle aren't hip enough to know these things unless they put them into practice. And besides, this guy was charged in some gay sex scandal years ago, too.
What is so wrong about these guys admitting to their proclivities and enjoying the life of a gay man? Why must they hide behind their own masks, and wives, and hate themselves for who they are? And even if they aren't ready to be out on the town, why do they have to vote for governmental actions that will limit and ruin the lives of the happy gay people in the country?
I think it's the hypocrisy that upsets me more. That the senator voted against all the gay rights legislation is just hypocrisy run amok. Amok, amok, amok.

Monday, August 27

Is it September already?

Alright, so I'm jumping the gun a little by posting my September avatar on August 27. Oh well. I was feeling kinda impatient for the next month's me, and thought, what the hell, I'll do it now. What would anyone do about it? So you'll notice that there is a little something extra in the avatar's environment. Except for that ridiculous hat on her, I'm all for including the kid in my monthly me, since really, she's by my side all the time anyway.

He's not sorry at all

Take a look at this, my friends. It is the face of someone who's only sorry that he got caught. Sad little Michael Vick, so upset about his poor judgment, bad decisions and appalling behavior, because he's supposed to be. Real people would have been upset about their initial introduction to dogfighting and seeing its carnage, not felt contrite after they've financed a kennel to produce the dogs, actively taken part in the executions of dogs, and thoroughly enjoyed the bloodsport for years. Really, who does this guy think he's kidding?
Someone quoted Vick's father as saying that Vick had always enjoyed watching pit bulls fight. They're like real warriors in life and death situations. Apparently, that is what Vick meant when he told people that he loved animals. He loved to watch them kill each other.
I'm so sickened by this, and for a number of reasons, but mainly because if no one had told on him, he'd still be doing it. That's a simple fact ... and that is what is at the heart of his insincere contrition today. And up until all three of his co-defendants turned on him, he still swore that he was no part of it, and that he would be redeemed by the law. Now, having admitted to his disgusting perversion, Vick is headed to jail. Here's hoping that he bunks with a real animal lover.

Sunday, August 26

He's an idiot. I'm the one in charge

Yesterday, we spent a good portion of our afternoon on the hunt for a new car stereo into which I could plug my iPod directly. We started at Best Buy, where all the needed equipment was stocked several months ago when I last asked about this whole thing. The guy there was quite helpful, but the store did not have the proper harness, or whatever, that was necessary for the installation. "Try Audio Express," the guy suggests. "They should have it." I thought, "Okay, we can do that, but it's going to be a lot harder to kill an hour during installation there than in Best Buy."
Thirty minutes later, we finally find the Audio Express, completely on a fluke, mind you. But we found it, and headed in to check out what they had to say. We walked in and the guy greeted us nicely and asked what he could help with. I told him what I was looking for, and he asked to see the car's current stereo system. He looked at it, then asked one of the technician's in the garage to come look, too. The guy did, they conferred, and then we adjourned back into the store.
He held the door open for me, then led me right over to Brian, where he proceeded to make his entire pitch, including possible installation issues, stereo suggestions and equipment benefits without looking at me once. Women out there, you would appreciate this. This guy spoke, for five straight minutes, about my car, my stereo, and my options, without looking me in the eyes once. He only had interest in what Brian had to say, and Brian's questions. Of course, I was so flabbergasted that he would completely ignore me once the conversation turned to the actual sale, that I really couldn't say anything. I kept waiting for him to look at me at some point. But he never did! Never!
Well, that was the end of that. Any stars this guy might have had in his eyes about getting Brian on the hook for anything were quickly dashed. Once he finished his pitch, I said, "Okay. Thank you," and we left. I didn't want to spend a single moment more in that place and in that guy's presence.
Really, it has been so long since I've come smack up against an attitude like that. I still can't figure out why I didn't say anything to him about why he wasn't speaking to me, since it was, after all, my car, and more importantly, my decision. What a pig.

Thursday, August 23

What a cool fish

I don't know what I've been doing that I've been too busy to blog lately. I could probably name off some of the past few days' highlights (installed new car seat; shopped at Target, Nordstrom, Albertson's, and Babies R Us; attended our first playdate; created pile of old baby stuff for Jennifer and Brett; made up the list of Mary's Moo Moos for sale), but it wouldn't be too interesting. [Editor's note: You see what I did there? I made you read the boring things I did before telling you that they were boring! Written trickery!]
Stories, stories, stories. I have none, so I'll just go to bed.
But first, a birthday haiku for Aunt Bette, whose big day is sometime around now. Mwah!
"A lady who's so special,
deserves a great day;
have a happy one!"

Tuesday, August 21

Books, books, books

Sometimes, when Brian finds me sitting on the sofa reading a book, he'll give me the evil eye and quip, "Reader," like it's a bad thing. I know it's a term of endearment from him, but I also know that he is one of so many people that simply doesn't get a whole lot of enjoyment out of reading (anything that isn't Harry Potter anyway). Weirdly, there is a lot of reading-centric news out and about today.
Tidbit #1: According to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll released Tuesday, one in four adults read no books at all in the past year. Of those who did read, women and older people were most avid, and religious works and popular fiction were the top choices.
So states the article, "The survey reveals a nation whose book readers, on the whole, can hardly be called ravenous. The typical person claimed to have read four books in the last year — half read more and half read fewer. Excluding those who hadn't read any, the usual number read was seven.
"People from the West and Midwest are more likely to have read at least one book in the past year. Southerners who do read, however, tend to read more books, mostly religious books and romance novels, than people from other regions. Whites read more than blacks and Hispanics, and those who said they never attend religious services read nearly twice as many as those who attend frequently.
"There was even some political variety evident, with Democrats and liberals typically reading slightly more books than Republicans and conservatives. [Editor's note: That seems obvious...]
"The Bible and religious works were read by two-thirds in the survey, more than all other categories. Popular fiction, histories, biographies and mysteries were all cited by about half, while one in five read romance novels. Every other genre — including politics, poetry and classical literature — were named by fewer than five percent of readers.
"More women than men read every major category of books except for history and biography. Industry experts said that confirms their observation that men tend to prefer non-fiction."
Tidbit#2: Barnes & Noble is refusing to stock the O.J. Simpson book, If I Did It, in its stores. The company cites a lack of customer interest as the reason, though it will have the "fictional" account available on its web site and through special order. Borders will stock the book, but won't market it in any way. "Head to the back of the store for that one, sir, no one wants to be seen looking at it." I can't decide if this is censorship on the part of Barnes & Noble. I guess not, since they aren't telling customers not to read it ... and they have a right to sell what they'd like ... but still ... it's intentionally making it hard for someone to find and read the book if they want to.
Tidbit #3: How is it that Paris Hilton can get ideas for books with minimal effort, and I find myself with a severe case of "nothing's good enough" just at the thought of creating a tome? Yep,the news is that Hilton is penning another book -- her third -- though she isn't sure what it'll be about yet. Where is that literary agent's phone number? Can he publish my book even though I don't know what I want to write about yet? For, I too, am in the "planning stages."

Sunday, August 19

A hunk of burning love

This kid is just awesome.
I am digging the whole package: the outfit, the hair, the groovy glasses. He is rocking the Elvis look.

It's floating! Make it stop!

I've always thought that when I am in space, I will have come up with some kind of cure to space hair, that uncontrollable, non-gravitational affliction that plagues the women up in the space shuttle and international space station.
I know that I would definitely keep my hair in a bun or twist, thereby taking care of the large and longer portion of the 'do, but the whole bang issue's solution continues to elude me. Would I just grow them out so that they're long enough to be pulled back as well? Would I barrette them back instead? Would I find the underwater look too difficult to resist?

Saturday, August 18

Any good suggestions for us?

Netflix is a really cool thing ... until you run out of movies to watch. I have six titles in my queue. Just six. It's really kind of embarrassing. I've had the little alarm at the bottom of my queue page for a while that reads (I paraphrase), "Pick more movies, loser, or you might end up with none at all."
All the flicks in my queue are either short wait or long wait, but none are available now. That means that when I send Clerks back unwatched on Monday, I may not have a third movie until one of those others is available. This poses a problem for me, simply because I won't be comfortable living with less than I should have (a constant issue with me).
Truth be told, I'm actually having a hard time sitting down and watching movies lately. I just can't bring myself to plant my ass on the sofa and spend the time. I'm hoping that it's a phase. So, I'm sure you're all dying to know what's in my queue, aren't you. Okay, I'll share: Hot Fuzz, Wild Hogs, Blades of Glory, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Fracture.

Thursday, August 16

"Elvis is dead!" 30 years later

The King's been dead for 30 years today, and (I add sarcastically) there is little to no pomp and circumstance surrounding it. Actually, there is quite a bit of excitement and hullabaloo going on about it. Thousands of people are making the trip out to Graceland to check out the big man's grave site, and pay their respects. They're dressed up in sparkly jumpsuits, sideburns and tacky t-shirts. They're bringing flowers; sharing stories; and buying all kinds of stuff with his face on it.
I'll pay my tribute from afar, my friends, preferring instead to stay in my air-conditioned home and checking the Memphis madness out online rather than roast in the 105-degree heat and humidity to see a relatively unassuming grave marker, and be bumped, prodded and pushed by the people.
Oh, but don't think for a second that I consider myself above visiting the home of Elvis. I've been a couple times. I just prefer to do my cheesy souvenir shopping, gawking and picture taking at a slow and leisurely pace. Mom and I have done it all before: toured the mansion, the plane and even the car museum. Best times ever, I think.
I don't know when exactly it was that I fell for Elvis. I have no idea how old I was, or what song it was that caught my initial attention. Was it the Christmas album that I can still have on constant repeat during the holidays? Was it my all-time favorite song of his, "Now or Never"? Or was it just the general splendor of his musical catalog as a whole? At any rate, I'll just make my respects known right here, right now, and thank him for entertaining me so well all these years.

Wednesday, August 15

27.5 minutes

Dudes. I went to the gym tonight.
I'm really glad that I did, too. I feel good, like I've done something real and healthy for myself. I feel kinda tingly, like a good sleep will open all kinds of other doors for me tomorrow. I feel tired, like I actually accomplished something good today.
I spent my time on the elliptical machine, not the stairmaster, as the photo suggests. I prefer the elliptical. It's not so brutal on my knees.
I gotta tell you, I like the way I'm feeling right now. I might get back into the habit of doing this whole workout thing. Besides, with the rockin' cool iPod, the time just flows right by. I got the Pod on shuffle, and am constantly surprised by the awesome tunes I've got floating around in that thing. Unfortunately, it comes with a price: I have "Back in Time," by Huey Lewis and the News replaying through my head.
"So take me away,
I don't mind,
but you better promise me,
I'll be back in time."

Tuesday, August 14

"You miserable vomitous mass"

So many random things for today:
~ Sydney and I were driving around yesterday and saw a green truck. It was actually more like one of those food trucks that visits work sites. And it was green. And it had a big hot dog on top of it. It was called "The Green Monster," and according to the information on the side, it sold Fenway Franks to special groups who rented the truck. There were Red Sox logos, and a Patriots logos (equal opportunity), all over it. Also, on its side was a version of the actual Green Monster, scoreboard and all! The green color itself was remarkably close to the green used in the ballpark, too. Just a cool idea, I thought.
~ My kid flipped my lunch plate over onto the table, my lap, and into our bag this afternoon. Not cool. I had finished my meal, which was why she was allowed to exit the stroller and get on my lap anyway, but I was not fast enough moving the actual plate out of her reach. Of course,
this also is the only time I remembered to ask for extra sour cream instead of the guacamole. Sour cream everywhere, my friends, everywhere.
~ I removed the tire cover from the back of my car. It's simply not as cool that it says "Scottsdale" on it, now that we are again living in Scottsdale. Anyway, in removing it, I made a discovery. Who knows how old some of those fall foliage leaves are, but they're still back there! And indications within the cover show that several years worth of leaves actually decayed in the space. I did manage to get about four decent-looking specimens, even though they were well beyond retaining any of their color when they fell. I'm on the hunt for a shadowbox frame in which to put them. Look at me! It's been almost two years since I've been in a New England fall, and I'm finally doing something creative with the leaves!
~ I've completely flaked on my resolution of keeping up with everyone's birthdays and sending cards this year. I've missed so many that I'm embarrassed. It's not that I don't have the cards either -- I do. It's just that I don't even think about them until it's too late. Mom told me to write them out for the month prior to them, like all August birthdays that first weekend of August -- and that was a great suggestion. So, why haven't I done it?
~ To my greatest delight, HBO has begun showing The Princess Bride! It's so odd how they cycle through films on those channels. I wonder who decides when a movie should go, and when it should return. How do I get that job?

Saturday, August 11

The subscription isn't a waste now

For the first time in, I'll say more than nine months, I sat, read and finished a Vanity Fair. I mean, I love that magazine. It's just that the stories are so long and involved that sitting and going through it has lately become a bit of a chore. But not last night. Nope, I got comfortable and started from the beginning, flipping through the ads, checking out the random star facts, and reading through all the articles that interested me. (I rarely read it cover to cover. I stick with the topics that consistently pull me in, such as Old Hollywood, recent scandals, in-depth profiles and the like.) Yep, for the first time since Sydney was born, I did what I used to do: I dedicated an unspecified block of time in an evening to catching up on everything Vanity Fair. It felt good. I feel informed, educated, in the know. I like it. Maybe I'll even read through last month's issue, too.

Friday, August 10

Worst white noise ever

About a month ago, we had some new downstairs neighbors move in. They've got a stereo and surround-sound speakers for their television. Bass has been known to rumble our floor more nights than not, but usually, by 10 or so, all is quiet. Except for one small thing.
They've turned on their master bathroom fan, and left it on. Day and night this humming, sometimes thrumming, pounds itself into my head. I try so hard to block it out, and sometimes I'm really able to, but the constant low-pitched hum is driving me crazy.
Then, yesterday morning, like some gift from the gods, the fan was switched off. I stood in my bathroom, still and breathing slow, in order to enjoy the great silence of no fan. I rejoiced, and rushed right out to tell Brian: "The fan is off! The fan is off! They've finally turned off their fan!" But late last night, my joy was dashed. The humming, thrumming had returned, and was again ruining the nice quiet of my bathroom.
"Why are these people keeping this fan on?" I wonder. "Why isn't the fan noise bothering them, too? Why is their bathroom air so stale? Why can't it be a louder and more annoying noise so that I can be justified in calling the apartment management?"

Thursday, August 9

Observations from the office; 10:22 p.m.

This week has gone by,
quickly and oppressively slow at the same time.
I look forward to the weekend,
Bourne is in our future.
  • Oliver is lying outside the doorway. Just close enough to be completely aware of what Brian and I are both doing the entire time he's prone, but still closer to me, as well as far from the rollers beneath my chair.
  • The wireless Internet is, again, not working properly, so I'm blogging to you connected by cable, and even worse, on Brian's computer because mine will simply not acknowledge anything other than wireless right now. What did I say the other night about technology being, on occasion, a big, fat waste? It's sucking a super-sized turd lately.
  • I just pulled out Brian's big book of limericks. I thought that a fun one might be just the thing for tonight. I was quite wrong. They're all really dirty, and I don't want to have that kind of stuff on here! They're much better told in person anyway.

Wednesday, August 8

What's your sign?

I know that I've said it before, but the fact that the space shuttle Endeavour is spelled in the English/British way bugs me to no end. The space shuttle is a distinctly American accomplishment, and it should not be spelled with that irritating "u" in it. If I was NASA's copy editor back then, I would never have allowed this to happen. It does not make the shuttle more proper, distinguished or intimidating. It makes it like the peeps we kicked out of our country years and years ago. This is our triumph, and should not be spelled like it would be in merry old England.

And now, with that editorially patriotic rhetoric over, we shall proceed with the blog as planned. ...
We watched Zodiac tonight: good little movie. I was pretty impressed by the number of recognizable names that were in it. I knew about Jake Gyllenhaal and Mark Ruffalo, but Anthony Edwards ("Goose!"), Dermot Mulroney, Ione Skye, Donal Logue, Chloe Sevigny, and Brian Cox were pleasant surprises. What freaks me out the most about this movie? That even though they think they know who did it, and he's dead by the way, they were never able to prove in a court of law that this was the guy who killed all those people. I hate it when the bad guy gets away with the crime! He didn't though, really, since he died in a manner he didn't dictate (heart attack) knowing that the cops were on to him. Still, it's disturbing subject matter. I dug the flick though.

Tuesday, August 7

Ten o'clock, channel 5

ITEM!: I'm stuck doing this blog post in Safari, rather than Firefox, my browser of choice for hanging out on Blogger. So your guess is as good as mine as to how this will look once it's posted. Damn, sometimes I simply hate technology. What's up with Firefox?
ITEM!: Check out the new iMac! Awesome! Every time I think that I might want an iMac, I notice that I am indeed typing in my bedroom, on my bed, with a ridiculous movie playing in the background. This is not possible with a desktop computer. Would changing the way I do the blogging and Internet surfing be worth a new computer? Right now, I'm thinking no. Of course, someone tell me why I continue to be loyal to this particular computer, especially after the harddrive crash of 2006.
ITEM!: Yes, I got all caught up in the Barry Bonds hype tonight. We happened to be watching "SportsCenter" when he came up to bat, and were sitting on the sofa watching when he hit home run number 756. It was nice to see that Bonds was at least humbled by his achievement, even if he didn't come by it honestly.
ITEM!: I'm saddened to hear about the death of one of the coolest television news anchors ever. Hal Fishman of KTLA News at Ten was one of those really cool cats that a viewer could count on to tell it like it is. His commentaries went off the deep end every once in a while, but as a newsman, he was unequaled. For years and years, "the news with Hal" was Mom's only appointment television. Up until yesterday, it still was.

Sunday, August 5

I like that she's kinda slutty

I got to digging through that damned guest/office closet today. We stopped and bought six boxes so that I could "organize" the space a bit better. Well, at least better in my head when I looked at it. Anyway, in so doing, I came across the three boxes of Mary's Moo Moo cow figurines that I had collected for several years, and moved from apartment to apartment for the last few. I think the last time I had them out on display was in our last apartment here in Arizona before moving to Boston.
At any rate, I have too many of the cows for my current purposes, so am looking for a way to sell them, or send them off to a good home. Did you know that there are collectors and message boards dedicated to the Moos? I didn't, until today. Now, I have two boxes of Moos that I don't want anymore, and several others that will now be divvied up amongst the holiday decor. Of those that I want to sell, I need to list them out, by name and number, for these message boards. That will not be a small task. I am not looking forward to it.

Saturday, August 4

A Yankee and a cheater go into a bar...

Today saw two major milestones reached in baseball history: Alex Rodriguez becoming the youngest player to hit 500 home runs in his career, and Barry Bonds tying Hank Aaron's all-time home run record of 755.
You know that I'm no fan of the Yankees (that's a Red Sox fan thing though). I'm even less of a fan of Rodriguez's (lest we forget the bitch slap and dirty baseball tactics of seasons past). I don't like Bonds either; he's kind of a jerk to people, especially journalists, and I don't think that's cool. Besides, I think he's cheating.
So, who's the bigger player here? Which is the more impressive milestone? Grudgingly, I'll go with A-Rod. This is mainly because, even if he does pull out the shady tactics, it's not straight up cheating, like Bonds and his "alleged" and "unknowing" use of steroids. I view Rodriguez's 500, at this young age (32), as a sign of good things to come. I'd even go so far as to say that I'd rather have a Yankee beat Barry Bonds' record than have it stand in the hands of a cheater.

Friday, August 3

It should be less about $80

So, I've finally got my Internet back up again. Some frickin' Cox technician was messing around in our box downstairs on Wednesday afternoon, and for some reason, decided to unplug our cable and Internet cables. I've got to tell you, after the loss of cable last weekend, and just the sheer irritation of this, I am so over Cox Communications. I'll be calling them on Monday to have our bill prorated. This is absolutely insane. Add that my Airport isn't working at all. We set up Brian's router though, so we've got wireless Internet access again at least. Seriously, technology just up and sucks sometimes.

Anyway, welcome to August. I wish it was cooler. I can't complain too much though, as I'm ringing in the new month with Mom in town. We've been hanging out, doing some shopping, eating some yummy food, and going to the movies. Yes! We went to the movies, just the two of us! We left Brian home with Sydney sleeping, and caught a later showing of No Reservations. The movie itself was a cute one, but the subject matter, of a sister dying and leaving the daughter with her sister and their subsequent relationship issues and dealing with the death, may not have been our best choice. Still, we enjoyed it.