Friday, December 29, 2006

letting go

When I was 5 years old I thought my grandfather was the biggest man that ever existed. He was tall, fat, and strong in my 5 year old eyes and I was certain no other man could possibly be bigger. I was also certain that he was as goofy as he was big and continually proved me right with stupid songs that were better than anything Barney can teach kids these days.

But as much as I like to think he was all play, he worked harder than I can ever imagine. PawPaw was a railroad man and worked weeks full of long days to provide our family with everything we could ever want. He worked weeks away from the house and would return to us exhausted. Those nights we had a ritual where we would eat dinner silently while watching the 5 o'clock news. I loved those nights of silent meals, filled with the news of the day because it meant my PawPaw was home for a few days.

The best days were the ones when he was home and rested. Besides singing, his favorite thing to do with me was to scratch off lottery tickets. It may not sound like the best activity for a 6 year old and her grandfather, but I swear I had the best luck when he bought me the tickets and we scratched them off together. I've tried in the past few years to pick up scratch off lottery tickets and I've never won, not even a dollar. I've discovered it wasn't my luck that did it, it was his. I should have taken him to a casino the day I turned 21, I could have been a very rich girl.

I grew up loving PawPaw despite his extreme hatred for animals. Hatred might not even be a strong enough word for how he felt about four legged things. I never would have thought that he could honestly like an animal, yet he loved the dog he gave me in a surprising way. When I had to move to California I knew I would be able to come home for visits, but the fact that I was moving Lily away from him really upset me. I mean, I had never known him to tolerate an animal, but Lily, with her infinite cuteness, had won him over. Nothing could have surprised me more.

But surprised was how PawPaw always left me feeling. Surprised by gifts he would give me. Surprised by winning lottery tickets. Surprised by how much he loved all of us and took care of everyone before himself.

The only thing that's not surprising was how much it hurt to lose him today.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

i made it home

I realize now that I posted a rant about getting bumped from my flight into New Orleans, but then never stated that I did make it onto the plane. It's amazing what a teary eyed girl can accomplish.

I've been home for about a week now and I've been busy running around, seeing family, and visiting some places I miss greatly. Here's photographic evidence:

jaunty angle

standing on the corner of Victory and Roosevelt


And here's the best picture from the whole trip; jparks getting his ass beat by his younger brother:

Saturday, December 23, 2006

I'll be home for Christmas (maybe, if I'm lucky)

Jparks and I bought plane tickets home for the Holidays months ago. Today we got to the airport to use those tickets, only to find out that I've been bumped from our flight to New Orleans. And there are no open seats on any other American Airlines flights. And, according to every travel website on the internets, no other airline has a open seat on any flight. Jparks finds this all very funny. In fact, when he realized that he checked both of our pieces of luggage under my name, and that they are going to end up in Who-the-fuck-knows-land, he started laughing even harder. His chances of getting a Christmas blowjob are getting slimmer and slimmer by the minute.

So here I am, sitting in the San Jose airport with a seat on a flight to Dallas and a useless ticket from Dallas to New Orleans. With every minute that passes, my blood pressure rises and my fuse gets shorter. I know the following is a pointless statement, but I fucking hate airlines.

I better have some awesome gifts waiting for me after this ordeal.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

an early resolution

My new year's resolution for 2007 is that I will continue my shoe sobriety for the whole year. Yup, no shoes from now until January of 2008...

I had you going there for a minute, didn't I? Did you really think I could go a whole year without buying shoes? Oh, hell no! I'm not ever half way through the 90 days and I'm wondering how I'm going to make it. So far, I've only had one pair of shoes I've seriously thought about breaking down and buying, but I somehow managed to walk away. But, that's all beside the point.

My early new year's resolution is to record and make comments about every book I read, album I buy, and movie I see next year. Sound silly and like I'm going to be making very boring blog posts for the next year? Yeah, maybe a bit of both, but the point is that when 2007 ends I'll be able to accurately create a best of list (best movies I saw, books I read, etc).

Right now I can't tell you what the best movie I saw this year was, simply because I can't remember half the movies I saw. And don't get me started on music. I buy more music than I should, it's as simple as that.

I don't plan on overloading my blog with all of this information on a daily basis, maybe I'll have a side page with the most recent comments and stuff. I haven't really worked out the specifics yet.

Anyway, stayed tuned for that.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

what's the hottest gift this holiday season?

If you said PS3 or Nintendo Wii, you would be wrong. The hottest gift this year is obviously Dick in a Box. I mean who wouldn't want one?

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Hep Alien

Last night, at the Guns N' Roses concert (hell yeah, you read that correctly, we went and saw Guns N' Motherfuckin' Roses and it ROCKED!) Sebastian Bach was one of the three opening acts. Before he took the stage everyone in our suite was discussing where they know him from (generally Skid Row) and what songs they hoped he would sing. As this discussion went on jparks seemed to not recognize any of the song titles people suggested and he also seemed to have a serious deficit of Skid Row knowledge. It wasn't until Mr. Bach took the stage that a light bulb went off over jparks' head:

"I know that guy! He's on Gilmore Girls!"

Ah yes, that's my husband; seriously lacking hard rock knowledge but very up to date on chick television shows.

Friday, December 15, 2006

leading everyone to believe I have an addictive personality

I remember when I got my first Nintendo for Christmas. I probably only wanted it because my older brother so wanted one and whatever he wanted, I wanted too. I think it was 1988 and I'm still not sure how my grandparents managed to get their hands on, not one, but two Nintendos for my brother and I, but they some how did it. I remember Justin and I spent Christmas day glued to the tv shooting ducks and running on the Power Pad (by running I mean using our hands to hit the pad. You go faster and burn less calories this way).

I might not have understood before receiving the Nintendo why I needed it, but once I got my hands wrapped around a controller I understood perfectly. I could be an Italian man running into tubes and battling owl-looking goombas all to save a princess! This rocked my world like you'll never know.

After Christmas my Nintendo migrated to my house and into my bedroom. This was probably the worst possible place for it, as I loved playing it more than I liked anything else. Go outside?!? Are you kidding me? My Nintendo is in here.

At this time my bedtime was early, as it should be for an 8 year old, and I remember shutting the bedroom door and then, being super sneaky, turning on the tv with no sound and playing Mario for god knows how long. One night my mom walked past the door when I stupidly forgot to close it all the way and caught me, controller in hand, eyes glazed over, happily playing games all night long. I'm pretty sure that's why the Nintendo relocated to the living room and I started to play way less and my Mom got hooked on Zelda.

Jump ahead 18 years and I've given up on game systems. I have a PS2 but other than Guitar Hero, I don't really play it. I have a PSP but have been greatly disappointed in the games available for it. I'm a simple girl, I like Mario style game, not games where I get a giant dildo to hit people over the head with in police stations. I figured I had just finally out grown all the game systems on the market.

That was until jparks bought me the Nintendo DS Lite for Christmas (I know it's not Christmas yet, but he buys things and just gives them to me early). I am now hopelessly addicted to video games again. It seems that the system was possibly created for kids and has lots of game titles that interest me. I haven't even had it a week yet and I all ready own New Super Mario Bros., Super Princess Peach, and Big Brain Academy.

The thing about my rekindled love of video games is that I've transformed back into a clammy handed 8 year old that can't put the DS down for fear that when I pick it back up my mad Bowser killing skillz will have disappeared. Must keep playing or else the Princess will never be free!

Once I realized I was growing a game dependency, I decided tried to be better about playing it at stupid times. Stupid times include: while waiting in the checkout line at Target, while I'm eating lunch, while I'm on the phone with people, and while I'm sitting at red lights.

Other than those times, you can probably find me with the DS clutched in my hands, eyes glazed over, with a dedicated look on my face. Save the Princess, Save the World

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

and he was totally serious

me: "I'm tired of thinking about my birthday party. I think I'll jut have people over to the apartment for drinks and snacks."

jparks: "Do you want me to plan your party? I know! We could all go sky diving!"


Tuesday, December 12, 2006

the craft of hooking

A few years ago I decided to pick up knitting as a way to keep my hands busy while I sat and watched tv. I've gotten wicked good at knitting long rectangles, i.e. scarves, but nothing else. The idea of increasing, decreasing, and knitting in the round scares the crap out of me and therefore I've never tried it. Or rather I have tried, failed miserably, and like to pretend I've never tried.

Recently I was thinking about how much the flight back to NOLA sucks and how jparks hates when I bring a big stack of magazines with me on the plane. And this got me thinking how I better find something new and exciting to bring with me when we fly back for the holidays to replace all my magazines. I thought knitting might be a good idea, but the thought of navigating two knitting needles, yarn, and the required book for help in the tight space of an airplane seat was not appealing. Then I started thinking maybe crocheting would be better for these space limitations.

So, of course, I went all gung ho and ordered The Happy Hooker and bought some hooks and yarn. Then one night I settled in to teach myself the art of hooking. And, that same night, I also (almost) threw the hook and book across the room in a fit of frustration. Hooking is hard!

Okay, maybe it's not hard, but it is hard for me to teach myself. Okay, maybe it's hard for me to teach myself with a book written for adults. Feeling rather beaten, I went back to and ordered Crocheting: Kids Can Do It. I used the knitting version of this book to learn the basics of that craft, so I'm hoping I can do the same thing for crocheting.

Keep your fingers crossed that I can figure out how to crochet in time for our flight. Otherwise jparks and I will have yet another huge argument over the stack of magazines I have in my backpack. You would think he would see the bright side of my stack: if the plane crashes I'll have enough paper products to make a fire AND allow him some for toilet paper every day. Boys, they are just so illogical.

Monday, December 11, 2006

yet another addiction to break

Saturday morning jparks and I woke up and headed to San Francisco for brunch. By the time we got on the road my head had started to pound and I figured I just needed food. After much mayhem (jparks' check engine light came on, we couldn't park anywhere near the place we wanted to eat) we gave up on food in San Francisco and headed over to Berkeley for crepes. As we drove over the Bay, my headache increased from a dull pounding to a throbbing so painful I could no longer keep my eyes open, much less tell jparks how badly I wanted food and that if he didn't feed me soon I would perish in the passenger seat. And my ghost would come back to haunt him since I died because he would not feed me.

After arriving in Berkeley, jparks' and I ate and then parted ways. I figured I would give my body some time to get the blood sugar flowing and then I would feel better. But after half an hour my head was still throbbing, and I figured coffee would help. I grabbed a latte and figured in another half hour I would feel human again. But the latte was beaten by the headache and I continued to feel crappy.

At this point in time I wandered to the store where jparks was playing Warlord and pouted and moaned and generally was a pain in the ass. Hey, why should he have fun when my head hurts? He suggested I go buy some aspirin or excedrin or please just go away so he can play cards. I decided not to heed his advice.

I walked to another coffee place, plunked down $3.65 for another freaking latte and waited. I knew in another half hour I would feel better. This second latte was magical, it was going to work!

And it did! Not long after I finished it, I felt better and was ready to get on with my day. But this got me thinking; had I recently built a caffeine addiction so strong that it would take 2 lattes to keep it in check? Could I not skip my morning coffee without wanting to rip my head off?

I didn't think I was consuming enough caffeine to warrant such a strong addiction. I had a latte or cup of coffee in the morning and sometimes a second in the afternoon, but that's it. I try to drink water during the day and try not to drink unnecessary caffeine, but somehow enough had been sneaking in to make me a junkie. It was officially time to admit I had a problem.

But I wasn't ready to do something about it just yet. I mean I could stop buying shoes for 90 days, but no way in hell could I go cold turkey from caffeine at the same time. Come on, give me at least one of my two vices.

But this morning, when I went to Whole Foods and ordered my normal latte, the barista asked me "You know that comes with four shots of espresso, is that okay?" It's like she knew I had a problem and needed a slap to bring me back to reality. 4 Shots! Who drinks 4 shots of espresso in the morning?!? Apparently me! And that's why I'm feeling like a big pile of flaming dog crap after it's been stepped on, when I skip coffee in the mornings.

So now I'm ready to admit I have a problem. But I think, unlike the shoes, just cutting caffeine out of my life is not the solution. I think I'm going to have to slowly lower my consumption down to a normal level. Maybe starting by only consuming 3 shots of espresso per day. Yeah, that can be tomorrow's goal. And I'm fine if I need to hover at that level for a bit. Baby steps with this addiction. Otherwise I might kill a person and I bet in jail I won't be given 4 shots of espresso daily.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

where did they go?

If you're wondering what happen to my list of links, well I'm sorry to say but I deleted them all.

Okay, I didn't really delete them, I just deleted them from my main page. I've been wanting to add more links, but didn't want the list to get long and take over the page. So last night jparks moved them to their own page which is why it's now crossed off my wish list for Santa.

The link to the new page is up towards the top and is called "people" (which is inaccurate since I'm linking to nonpeople types as well). I'll be adding links frequently, so check back often.

Anyhoo, that's what's going on.

Friday, December 8, 2006

dear santa,

This year I have been really good. I moved to California and I married jparks, both with minimal bitching. If anything earns me a sweet present that second thing is surely it.

See I'm not really feeling the Holiday vibe this year. Last year I really wanted a tree and had to settle for an ornament tree. This year I don't have any desire for a tree; I haven't even brought out the ornament tree. I was tempted to buy a hot pink tinsel mini tree just for the awesomeness of it, but Lauren stopped me (you should check her as naughty on your list because of that). I had the best plans of decking Lily out in Holiday attire and taking a picture of her for some Christmas cards, but that idea died quickly.

I'm not sure why I'm feeling so unfestive, but that shouldn't stop you from bringing me gifts. In fact, my unfestiveness should motivate you to bring me more gifts than usual, you know, to help get me in the Holiday spirit. To help you out I'm including a list, in no particular order, of things I would like to receive.

1. Fleur de Lis Silver Charm bracelet from Mignon Faget
2. Nikon SB-600 speedlight flash
3. a sewing machine
4. Banana Republic gift card
5. I need some stuff moved from my main blog page to its own page. Could you hook me up?
6. A bookstore gift card
7. I guess a Wii, which is more of a gift for jparks, but once he gets one, he'll shut up about not having one and that sweet, sweet silence will be a gift for me.
8. ummm, cash for all the things I'm forgetting I want

So there you have it Santa. Now get to work on that list and make me feel some joy for this blasted Holiday season.

Bah Humbug,

Thursday, December 7, 2006

why I'm not a party planner

Back in October I threw jparks a bitching birthday party. We had a wine tasting and picnic at a vineyard in Saratoga and much fun was had by all. Now my birthday is creeping up and trying to figure out what to do for it is really becoming a pain in the ass.

Originally I wanted to have a climbing party but it is going to be way more expensive than I expected. So that idea has been scrapped, which sucks, because that's what I really wanted to do.

Next I was thinking bowling party. Except in my head all bowling allies are Rock and Bowl which means you can't NOT have a good time. In reality no other bowling ally is Rock and Bowl and I'm thinking bowling is going to stink.

Shouldn't planning a party be easy? In fact, since it's my birthday, shouldn't someone else be planning it for me? I should just be required to show up somewhere, someone should hand me a cocktail, and much fun will be had by all. Why can't it be that easy?

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

hmph, figures

Awhile ago I was telling a friend of mine that I really needed some black ballet flats. The problem was not finding them, it was the fact that I didn't want to pay $60 or more for ballet flats. I mean, come on, a ballet flat is not much of a shoe, how is it okay to charge more than $25 for them? I never bought black ballet flats because I never found a decent pair, at a price point I could live with. And now to tease me the universe has created the perfect black ballet flats, in patent leather!, for only $14.99.

$14.99 people! That's even less than I think these shoes should be priced.
black ballet flat

But since the universe hates me, these shoes have been sent to me during my 90 days of shoe sobriety. And to make matters even worse, these shoes are from Payless and they are doing Buy 1, Get 1 Half Off. I could potentially get two pairs of shoes for under $25. I know Payless shoes are not the greatest things in the world, but ballet flats are ballet flats are ballet flats. Who cares if the inside doesn't say "Steve Madden", I only paid half of what he charges!

So there it is, my first hurdle into shoe sobriety: the shoe I've been hunting for 5 months or so, sitting right within reach. And I'm going to have to resist. dammit.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

jparks is sneaky

Lesson Learned: When jparks randomly asks if I want to go see a movie, before accepting the offer, ask what movie he has in mind, otherwise you mind get conned into going see a crap movie.

Tonight I'm going to see Casino Royale. Ugh.

Monday, December 4, 2006

post NaBloPoMo burnout

I think I burned myself out in November with NaBloPoMo and I now, officially, have nothing to say.


I'm going to see Aimee Mann in concert tonight. She is playing at a club called Bimbo's. This name makes me giggle. Bimbo's.

See, I got nothing.

Sunday, December 3, 2006

dudes, seriously...

I am not a shoe whore! I can live quite happily with the shoes I have. I'm not buying shoes for 90 days to show that I can be an adult and save money when needed. Not because jparks and I have been living on government cheese and ramen noodles, that we have to heat up over candles because I bought shoes rather than pay the energy bill. Trust me, we have not hit anywhere near that low of a point in our lives. Our cheese is still name brand and we just really like ramen noodles.

On another note, we have agreed that as long as I don't spend money from our checking account, then gift cards and gifts are fine after January 15th (otherwise known as the halfway point). Jparks and I feel this is a fair compromise between our sets of rules. And it's long enough to save the money to get our energy turned back on.

Friday, December 1, 2006

working towards sobriety

Jparks has decided that [number edited out until the Guess the Number of Pairs of Shoes I own game is over] pairs of shoes is too much and that I need to work towards 90 days of shoe sobriety. I agreed to this at first, but last night, as we laid down the rules for this test of my willpower, I had second thoughts. Jparks' rules were unreal, there was no way I could stick to them. Basically, I wanted out before we even started.

Jparks' rules state that I was in no way allowed to acquire shoes over the next 90 days. My rules state that I'm not allowed to spend our money on shoes, but if presented with a Nordstrom's or other store gift certificate I can use that, but only that, to purchase shoes. Likewise, if a friend says "Hey, I have a pair of size 7 shoes that don't fit me, would you like them for free?" I'm allowed to take those shoes.

I thought the whole point of this 90 days with no new shoes was about saving the money that I would normally spend on shoes. Jparks thinks the point is about breaking an addiction. An addiction that I don't mind breaking, but realistically the holidays and my birthday are coming up and its pretty likely I'll get some gift certificates. I think I should be allowed to spend those gift certificates as I please, as long as I don't spend more than their amounts on shoes.

So I'm putting it to you folks: Am I wrong and it should be no shoes, not even if they are free from a friend? Or is jparks wrong and I should be allowed to accept gifts of shoes and gift certificates around the holidays.