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July 2006

These Things

Three things that take me back to childhood:

1. The morning sun bouncing off pavement

2. Sitting on the grass until that last edge of dusk before night falls

3. Those stretches where the land overlaps with development - the railroad tracks, the hidden alleys behind houses, a string of auto shops built next to farmland.  Shortcuts the kids made where the sidewalks are dirt and the grass and wildflowers push up along the fences and at the edge of roads.  (Even driving by a stretch like that reminds me.)

Three things that take me back to highschool:

1. I Wanna Be Sedated, The Ramones

2. That one week that occurs somewhere around the end of January and early February where the rain and cold stop briefly and the sun comes out.  It’s warm and gorgeous and it’s a brief false spring before the rain resumes.  (This week always seemed to happen during finals; half school-days, relief of pressure, and then beautiful days to boot.)

3. Toyota Camrys in light metallic blue or that rust color

This is not a meme per se but I thought it was fun (plus I saw one of these things and it sent me back – you have to guess which one).  So no tagging, but if anyone would like to post the things that take them back I’d love to read them!  I’d also like to share with you two new bloggers I’ve been enjoying.  Please meet DangerPop and CoffeeBetsy.   

               – the weirdgirl


Juicy Must Die!

OK, I had to take a moment and share the horror.  I was shopping for swimwear and came across these monstrosities.  As if swimsuit shopping isn’t hard enough!  And I was just looking for a new pair of board shorts, damnit!  (Which have been hard to find, so I must assume they are not en vogue anymore; because, of course, why should something so practical last forever?  But I’m not bitter.)

Um, that spiral is in exactly the WRONG place.

Swimsuit_black_and_white_1

Because nothing shows off your stretch marks like brass rings!

Swimsuit_lizard_rings_1

Excuse me, I’m off to swim now… in my vagina suit!

Swimsuit_vagina_1

And finally, the ever present Juicy.  I’m not saying I haven’t seen a few cute things in their collection but I’ve never understood the writing-across-the-butt thing.  Especially wearing the word “juicy”.  (Especially paying the price demanded to wear the word “juicy” across your ass.)

Swimsuit_juicy2_1

I mean you might as well just go to the beach in this:

Swimsuit_drippy_1

Please note that all of the above hideousness is considered “designer” swimwear.  Thus proof that the line between trailer trash and high fashion is about as thin as Brittany Spears’ thong.      

            - wg


Damn Computer!

My goddamn, brand new, frickin computer that I've only had up for TWO WEEKS keeps crashing and giving me errors!!  I am not happy.

Of course, the help techinician on the first of what I know will be many phone calls, said, "I can transfer you to so-and-so but please know this is a fee service."

I said, "Oh no. No, it isn't. You may have a fee, but I'm not paying a fee."

I've had this computer a month.  Give me a fucking break.  You can return underwear within a month of purchase.  Used underwear even, if you take it back to Nordstroms.  (They take anything back.)  (No, I haven't done that.)

I am now working on my old laptop again (sweet reliable girl).  I'm kind of glad I didn't give it to my brother, even though he was strongly hinting (sorry, kiddo). 

Drama to continue.

(I am going to be SO FUCKING PISSED if I have to do a wipe and reinstall and migrate everything over again!! ... ARGH!!)


The Bell’s A-Ringing - Drool Mommy, Drool

Finally here.  I’ve been meaning to post ALL DAY!  Actually I meant to post yesterday but it didn’t happen.  And then it didn’t happen and didn’t happen and didn’t happen.  Oh, and did I mention that it is swelteringly hot here?  It’s like you’re already having trouble getting your shit together and then you’re all wilty on top of it. (Nobody likes to be wilty.)

I’ve discovered a new talent. Since it’s been so hot Chance has been a bit reluctant to eat solid food.  He’s great with the smoothies, icies, drinks of all kinds… but he just hasn’t been as interested in other foods.  He also has recently taken up with the ol’ “drop and watch”.  You know, where they drop the food and then watch it bounce or roll or splat on the floor.  (Yeah, I didn’t think I had to explain that either.)  Especially with peas.  Peas are super duper entertaining (groan with me now).

OK. So I guess this wouldn’t be such a big deal if I had him sitting in his high chair, in the linoleum-floored kitchen, to eat his meals.  Except I don’t.  Under advice from our pediatrician she mentioned just putting the food out and letting him eat at will.  Toddlers like to roam, you know. Like little grazers: snack snack, play, snack. (It’s this whole preventing obesity / anti-power struggle with early eaters thing.)  And since me and Keen like to eat in the living room (I know), in front of the TV (I know, I know!), on the couch and at the coffee table (not even proper chairs) well… we let Chance do the same.  (I so totally get that I’m probably setting myself up for a slew of problems later on. Eventually we will eat dinner at the table. sometime.)

But here’s where it gets difficult.  Chance is playing the drop and watch on a patterned rug.  With lots of colors and… patterns.  So, like, can I see those peas?  No.

Can I find the peas?  Oh yes.  My feet have become highly attuned to the feel of discarded food.  They are so sensitive that with the merest brush of contact I can tell the difference between hotdog and bologna, peas and corn, graham cracker and cheerio, cheese even – cheddar or jack. I can even estimate how long it’s been sitting on the floor from its state of softening/stiffening/ability to squirm away.  Scientists should come calibrate instruments off my frickin’ feet (and maybe look for new bacteria).  And the saddest part? I’ve gotten so good at identifying the food I don’t even grind it into the carpet.  As soon as I feel a little texture, a little smooshing, my foot jerks up reflexively and I swoop down to pick it up.  (It’s SO Pavlovian!)

I figure I can rent out my services.  You know, after hours in various dimly-lit establishments, clubs, dinner parties - after the meal but before the morning clean-up crew.  I can walk around in my bare feet and not only find but identify all the foodstuffs spilled on the floor. Get to those potential staining elements first.  “Um, guys? Berries over here!... Tomato sauce. I’ve found tomato sauce.”

Yes, it’s gross but I’ll be charging a hefty fee.   This will definitely be added to the resume.            

         – the weirdgirl


Birthdays, Another Year Older and... um, that's about it

Today I turned 35.  I've been trying to come up with something to post, maybe something meaningful, maybe something funny... but I got nothing.  I suppose I could whine poetic about feeling my age, and now being officially part of the SYSTEM, and how it's all downhill from here, blah blah blah... except I don't.  Feel all that old, I mean (well, OK, except for that whole aging EGGS thing, I am feeling the pressure on that a bit... which I totally blame on media-induced hysteria... and, um, medical science).  I basically have felt about the same "age" for quite a few years now.  I think I stopped around 28 or 29, except, of course, for the benefit of increased paychecks and added wisdom and more confidence and all that.  Woohoo!  (When I hear about teenagers sincerely depressed because they're leaving highschool and the "best time of their life" behind I always think, "What are you NUTS?  Life gets SO much better after you grow up!!" But maybe that's just me.)

"Growing up" within reason, of course. I am SO not giving up the cartoons, or video games, or my love of Sesame Street and School House Rocks.  I mean, let's be reasonable.  I'm just adding in great restaurants and wine tasting and too many pairs of shoes.  (Though I'd like to point out that the term "too many" in conjunction with "shoes" is highly debatable.)

So anyway... crap, I still got nothing.  I'm a little distracted because I'm still having difficulties with my computer.  Now my wireless isn't working.  And that was really the whole point of buying a new computer, ya know?  (Well, one of the reasons.)  *grumble grumble mutter*  Posting might be a bit slow until I get everything worked out.

But that's OK.  You know, just mentioning shoes in a post always cheers me up.  (Yeah, I'm weird like that.)  And I'm going out to an adult-only dinner tonight (yay!) at a nice restaurant.  Yep, so far, 35 is feeling pretty good.            

                  - the weirdgirl


Happy Father's Day

An understanding of true delight

I can see it in his eyes, when he squeals at first sighting and toddles (a little drunken) to you, the brightest time of his day. And then shrieks again in frustration; greetings are always over too soon, cut short to get out of sweaty clothes, put down packages, run to the bathroom. He follows you (anywhere) on little legs, clutches at baby gates, fat fingers poking through desperately at the wire and plastic mesh. Every line of him a howling disappointment.  Then you come back (a scant moment later) and the sun comes out again.

Too early to talk yet more eloquent than any adult… 

You are the one who makes him laugh,

The magic man,

It’s dad.

And I can see it in your eyes… the endless pool of love that welled forth when he was born does keep growing.  How surprising, how an infinite continues to grow (as constant as the fingerprints, the toys squirreled away, the crusty smear on furniture or clothes unexpectedly encountered). Ripples expanding ever outward.  You swing him into the air and he gasps, gleeful (his laugh so much like yours).  And suddenly (I see) you see ripples reflecting back… not because they hit anything like a border, but bouncing back from his love given. The rings overlap, flowing patterns, so much more than ever expected.

Beyond anything

This is being dad.

To the father of my son and to all dads, everywhere.         - wg

Fd_button_1 


Technical Woes and Joys

I've just gotten everything over to a new computer.  This process has taken me roughly a month to do (mainly because who has time with a one-year-old to load up software?).  Everything migrated pretty smoothly... until the end.  The final step, the thing I can't live/work/play without... EMAIL!  Of course, I had problems with email.  First it wasn't recognizing the profile I backed up (my brother fixed that - it's good to have techie family), then I couldn't receive email (on the phone with my provider), THEN that was fixed and I found out I couldn't SEND email.  sigh  Please understand, I'm not completely useless technically.  I do work in high tech.  But I'm not very good with system level stuff.  Before I called my brother, my service provider, etc. I spent quite a bit of time reading how to migrate my mail app profiles online.  So, you see, I did TRY!  It's just that a lot of that stuff is written for people who already kind of know what they're doing.  You know?  And as my brother puts it, "You know that file they say not to edit?  Yeah, that's the one you open."  Now how would I know that (let alone be brave enough to try)?

Anyways, mad thanks to my kid brother! You rock!  And you're not a kid.  Anymore.  Sorry I keep calling you that.

I will miss my old computer, though.  Reliable, sweet-tempered, the only times I had to redo the system was when worms/viruses went through, poor thing.  She served me well.  But she was just getting on in age and I decided to retire her with honor.   

Not right away, however.  As I've just discovered that my address book didn't transfer.  sigh  (I've been doing a lot of sighing lately.  Which only really helps to suck in more allergens.  I'm waiting for the next major computer disabler (is that a word?) to be called an "allergy".  As in, crap my computer just got hit with an allergy.  You know it's coming.)

OK, so a couple of things and I'll stop babbling.  Kara at Cape Buffalo has started a new bloggect for Father's Day.  If you're interested in joining up, pop on over and let her know, or just check out all the amazing bloggers who will be participating.  Also, if anyone would like to contribute to the Things They Don't You in Lamaze list (I mean you new moms out there) please drop me a line.  I need some inspiration 'cause I'm kind of stuck.  Or maybe I'm just starting to forget.  One of those.

            - the weirdgirl


Cheese, it’s a lifestyle

OK, so this is the second installment of my Cooking for Slackers series.  Who knows?  If I can come up with enough slackeriffic recipes I might be able to make up my own pamphlet!  And then you all would have the (dubious) honor of my acquaintance.  You could even initiate conversations with, “Hey you know that weird chick at the supermarket who hands out cheesy pamphlets with only three (sucky) recipes in them?  Yeah, I know her!”

What?  I have dreams too, you know.

Just so you know, all recipes have gone through vigorous quality testing.  I.e. if me and Keen like the taste, it’s approved!  And if it’s easy and can made in under ten minutes than it’s doubly approved by me, slacker cook extraordinaire.  Stamps for everyone!  So, here you go…

Cheesy Chicken Mac

1 – 2 packages of Easy Mac  (this is the microwavable Mac n Cheese for those of you not in the know, and if you don’t know about Easy Mac I suggest you run out and get some right now!)

1 can Underwood Chicken Spread (now I know some of you may have prejudices against canned meat, but you really should give them a try)

Make the Easy Mac in the microwave as usual. After the cheese part is prepared, mix in 1/3 to ½ can of chicken spread (to taste) per package of Easy Mac.  Serve!

That’s it.  And once again it’s really tasty.  After I started making it for my son, Keen and I both started eating this as a light meal / mid-afternoon snack as well.  I have another version that you can almost call a casserole that involves regular Mac n Cheese and some light (*shudder*) cooking.  Basically, I throw in some cut up broccoli in the boiling water to cook along with the noodles, then prepare as usual and throw in a whole can of chicken spread.

Easy peasy, super cheesy.                – the weirdgirl 


I Need a Reset (Thoughts On the Nature of Blogs)

I’ve been finding myself a reluctant to post lately and some of you may have noticed that I haven’t been very consistent.  Recently I realized that when I was writing funny posts I seemed to get a lot of hits and comments.  Which was great; I even got links from other bloggers and new visitors stopping by.  But then I noticed that when my actual life encroached on my posts both comments and visits to my site went down.  This was a really disturbing trend.  Especially considering that I think my blog sees a lot of my personality and outlook, but not always the in-depth day to day details of my life.

I didn’t know how to react (I mean, a little inadequate, a little letdown, confused) and I’ve been pondering what to do about it a lot.  Of course, the knee-jerk reaction is to write more funny posts.  And I actually really like to write comedic pieces.  I’m usually upbeat and a natural smart-ass (couldn’t you tell?) and it extends easily into writing.  Except… I really don’t like the idea of feeling I have to write a certain way to stay entertaining (dance, monkeygirl, dance).  I mean, yeah, that’s the point of A LOT of writing - to be entertaining, to have aesthetic value.  But I didn’t know if I wanted this blog to be the place for that.  I originally intended this blog to be a dumping ground where I could have some fun and write about whatever I felt like, both a creative outlet for me and a place to gather my thoughts, like in a journal.  Except with an audience.  And, except for the fact that I like to write entertaining, comedic pieces.

Crap.  See, I was confused and I started thinking about the nature of blogs.  It’s not really a journal because you have and expect an audience.  But at the same time, for me, this is not the place I wanted to write pure fictitious works either (i.e. more traditional pieces in which I might take a lot more time and effort to be entertaining).  I do other creative writing, as well as write for work, and this blog is different from either of those mediums.  I needed to reset not only what I think of and expect a blog to be, but also what I wanted this blog to be.

The other element (and I think the source of all the mixed emotion) of a blog is interaction and community.  In any other writing you still expect an audience, but they don’t normally interact with the author. And the fact of the matter is, regardless of what I’m posting, I do crave the interaction.  I get so excited whenever I see comments pop up on the screen.  There are some amazing people on the web and I like feeling like I’m part of that community.  (And the problem with any community, is that you then open yourself up to relying on them, right?)  In real life, I don’t normally worry too much about other people’s opinions.  I put myself out there, act like me and just let the rest take care of itself.  But with the web it’s a little like being blind.  In real life you can read peoples’ expressions, hear (and see) their thoughts, get a “feel” for what they’re like, and make connections.  Or you realize you’re not connecting with the person and you both go your separate ways.  It’s very definitive, in real life, and I never realized how much so until I started blogging.  On the web I feel like I’ve made some connections, met like-minded individuals who I’d love to meet in person - but without (and until) that real life component there is always a little bit of doubt.    

Forgive me if I’m rambling.  I’ve been trying to work through not only what I want to do with this blog, but how I feel about it, how (and why) it’s making me react, and how and why it’s different from other writing I’ve done.  And equally, how I react to and think of other peoples’ blogs.  There’s something about the mixture of creative process, real life components, and interaction of a blog that stirs up some deep emotions (even though, I think it’s kind of trite to make a blog=life metaphor).  It’s different from creating a piece  of art (alone) and then trying to get published / put in an art gallery / etc. (alone).  With a blog it’s a little like wearing a piece of your creative process in your life (along with your life) everyday. You’re vulnerable, not because you’re putting EVERYTHING out there, but because you’re putting pieces of yourself out there (and creative pieces at that) - without anyone being able to read your expressions, or get a “feel” for your intentions/sincerity. 

(It’s such a tangled web, and this is only touching on what a blog can invoke.  You want to discount it… I mean, it’s the Internet, and we’ve all inherited a certain amount of bias about the Internet.  But anything that can stir so much emotion in its readers/writers is definitely something.)

So what it’s come down to, and the reason I’ve been an inconsistent (or maybe that should be incontinent) poster lately, is that I haven’t been enjoying the (purely internal) pressure.  I was starting to feel insecure about my writing, insecure about having/keeping an audience, and feeling like I needed to write funny posts all the time.  (And especially when real life interferes, sometimes that’s impossible.)  One thing I knew I didn’t want this blog to turn into was something that made me insecure.  I originally wanted, and still want, this blog to be fun. 

After all that rambling and hesitating and unsure musings I’ve decided to keep writing about my real life when I need/want to.  Even if that means the posts aren’t always funny.  Even if that means I don’t get as many hits or comments.  Blogging just hasn’t been as fun lately as it used to be, and it’s a lot harder to write funny pieces when you’re not having any fun. 

I’m pretty sure it’ll all come back.  I’m also pretty sure that most bloggers have the same occasional mixed emotions about their blogs that I do.  And it's so damn addictive... we’re all in this something together, aren’t we?           - the weirdgirl


Shopping is Misunderstood

I've been seeing this quiz floating around and thought it would be fun to take (plus, I was having blogger's block). These were my results...

Are You a Slacker Mom?

Your quiz results make you a Pretty in the City Mom

You might have a subscription to both Parenting Magazine and Vogue. While picking up a darling Easter outfit for your tyke at Bloomingdale's you're tempted to grab a pair of Manolo Blahniks for your own tootsies. You are a fabulous mom, and you take care of yourself fabulously, too.

Take this free personality test by Clicking Here>> or going to www.areyouaslackermom.com

soooooo... huh?!  I can't really figure out how it came to these results. It did ask A question about what you do to relax (check all that apply) and I DID click shopping, as well as some other activities like reading, but... OK, I just don't get the Parenting Magazine thing. I do have a subscription, but only because some maternity shop or other signed me up for it free without my knowledge. I'm currently using past issues to hold down my couch cover (you know, when you shove rolled up magazines into the creases of your couch? It really does work!).  I do love to shop... but Vogue, Bloomingdales, Manolo's?  Excuse me, I don't read Vogue, I don't shop at Bloomi's and I resent being stereotyped this way (all right, the shoes would be pretty nifty).  Yes, I read Lucky, but it's NOT the same thing!  And this quiz really hasn't given me a "slacker" rating.  I mean, I did the quiz for the slacker rating! 

What?  Are they inferring that if you like to shop you must be slacker?  'Cause that is JUST WRONG! 

I am so offended.              - the weirdgirl*    

*Now with PMS!