Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Birds of a Feather

J and I were walking along the canal behind the campus on a chilly winter evening. We had been "hanging out" for a few weeks and he had just recently discovered that when he swung over to kiss me I didn't actually knock his block off like I had previously threatened to. I had recently discovered that perhaps this kissing thing wasn't as bad as past experience had convinced me it was. Perhaps I had just found a guy who was better at it.
But I digress.
The night was clear and crisp, and the old trees branched out over the canal, which glittered with reflections of lights from the other side.
We stopped under a tree. Flirting, laughing, holding hands. He leaned in.
I heard fireworks...No, not fireworks. Little spashing sounds in the canal.

Ploonk. Plunk ploonk. Plink plunk ploonk.

We looked up to discover that we had paused under a patch of trees serving as a resting area for the entire bird population of Seattle.
And they were all relieving themselves at the same time.
Somehow we managed to escape the (literally!) thousands of tiny bombs that ensued and made our way back to the sidewalk of safety without any battle wounds.
Ah, romance.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The Last Straw

I have witnessed THE LAST STRAW. Over the weekend, our cat Countess has metamorphosised from mild-mannered and aloof to PSYCHO ATTACK CAT.
It happened on a day just like any other day in which our dog was bugging the cats. Poirot is a blob by nature and more or less lays down and takes whatever the dog will dish out. I think his theory is that if he ignores the dog long enough, eventually it will just rot away.
Countess, on the other hand, usually avoids the dog by staying high enough not to be reached and stares down upon him like "Fool. You are and will always be a lesser being."
However, this day was different. The dog was dancing around on the floor and yapping at Countess, trying as always to provoke her into...something...but this time IT WORKED.
It was like watching Gollum get really pissed. Or that scene where Bilbo turns into Scary Bilbo but I couldn't find any pictures of that. First we heard her...growl can be the only appropriate description. Then the eyes became enormous, the tail took on that electrocuted look, and the claws came out. Within seconds, she was flying through the air with ALL FOUR claws aimed directly at dear dog's face.
Fortunately he has very quick reflexes and turned tail to run, but she chased him until she had him cornered in the bedroom. Then she let out another growl as if to say, "Look at me the wrong way again and they'll be finding pieces of you in the litter box for weeks, buddy."
And things haven't been the same since. The dog is always up to a challenge, so it hasn't stopped him from attempting to provoke the cat. But we'll hear the growl, then the sound of stampeding around the carpet and then a Nazgul shriek that lets you know the cat has just detached one of the dog's limbs from the rest of his body. He takes what's left of his bleeding carcass away and doesn't mess with her for the rest of the day.
He is now accepting his role as the beta cat. He even does Sit and Lay Down for her, his attention glued to her expression to see if he has won approval. He hardly does that for us.
Perhaps we should try the growl & slash routine.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Baby is Good for Business

I get to be in a Cantoni commerical as the pregnant lady on the couch. Of course, at this stage that will require some padding, but I'm totally looking forward to it. And I really want that couch. It's 5 feet in diameter and perfectly round. It's called the Cuddle Lounge. Check it out on their website.

Even cooler than getting to sit on a comfy couch in front of a camera, is the fact that this commercial will help to alleviate some of the repressed guilt I have over not applying my 4 years as a theatre major to my carreer.



Oh Gross. Oh Gross Gross Gross.

What I want to know is where's the guy who apparently didn't notice that he cut his finger off? And furthermore didn't notice that it landed in the food?

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Old People Rock

"Hello Amy. You have 4 new messages. First new message:
  • 'Hello? Hello, this is John Doe. I'm 83 years old and I want to get a unit shipped to me each month so I can get my commissions. I'm 83 years old and I need to make some money.'

Left Yesterday at 5:02PM. Next Message:

  • 'Hello? This is John Doe. I want to call someone to place an order, not listen to someone tell me what I can't do.'

Left Yesterday at 5:04PM. Next Message, marked URGENT:

  • '550...6130...Hello...'

Left Yesterday at 5:05PM. Next Message:

  • 'Hello... I need to place an order and I need to do it tonight. This is very important. Tomorrow might be too late. Please send me a unit each month. My credit card number is 1234... 56.. 78.. 9101121... 3. Someone please call me...tonight...and let me know that you have done this.'

Left Yesterday at 5:10PM. End of New Messages."

As a side-note, our dear John Doe also left 4 messages on the main voicemail box, 3 on Jamie's voicemail and 1 on Boss Man's voicemail (in which he neglected to leave his name, number or any other identifying information and I walk past Boss Man's office to hear 'Who are you???")

Come to find out this morning, there was really no urgency and he didn't need to place any order at all.

I love old people. Sometimes.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Death of a Sales...woman

I spent the weekend down in Houston with some old friends from highschool, two of which are getting married this summer, one of whom's bridal shower prompted the trip. The third friend is one I haven't seen since my own bridal shower, which was - eghad - FOUR YEARS ago. Time flies.

Three of us had girl time the traditional sleepover way, and it was lots of fun. Except, Leigh, I swear I didn't mean to put you through the hours of boredom looking at EVERY SINGLE SCRAPBOOK I'VE EVER made. Of course it's nice to have someone actually see the result of countless hours I've spent hunched over a table cropping, arranging and taping - but really, that wasn't my intention when I brought them all down. I was only expecting to show one or two of them, and I would imagine that even THAT would border on unacceptable levels of forced boredom.

Looking back at that paragraph, I'm realizing that there's no way any person with a brain bigger than a walnut would believe me. But it's still true. God knows. He's got my back. Yeah.

Anyway, I have come to realize that this is why I could never be a success as a, saleswoman. I have guilt about advertising or forcing anything of mine on someone else, particularly someone I know. All those years of school fundraisers, bringing colorful overpriced junk catalogs to everyone in my neighborhood, church, and dad's office were TORTURE. Absolute torture. And I still have guilt from it that requires me to purchase something from every 10-year old with a catalog that comes through. Still paying my dues.

And no, that was not a suggestion to send your kids my way with their popcorn and wrapping paper. I also eat children to get out of committing to fundraisers.

Anyway, thank goodness for patient friends that don't make a big deal out of my occasional neurosis.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Rationalization at It's Best

"I think I'm going to go to Old Navy during my lunch break today."
"I'm not really hungry, so there's no point in spending money that I don't need to spend."
"So you're going shopping instead."

2nd Chance to be Five

Last night we went to Adventures Landing for my sis-in-law's birthday party.

SOOOOO much fun!

Have to admit, I wasn't really looking forward to it, especially once my doctor told me I couldn't do the go-carts. And it was cold. Like, REALLY COLD.

But we had a great time. We started out at Sonic and then proceeded in true Progressive-Dinner Style to Cold Stone Creamery for ice cream cake.

Then off to Adventure's Landing where we all played mini golf and J won. No big surprise because my husband has this UNCANNY KNACK at COMPLETELY ANNIHILATING everyone on silly games he never ever plays. He even beat my mom who got 4 - count them FOUR - hole-in-ones. It was always that way in college. Tennis, Pool, Ping-Pong, you name it. He could have played twice in his whole life and still wipe the table with everyone else.

I also got to play Laser Tag for the first time ever. Of course, that game wasn't really fair because we were playing with Ryan, who spent a few years in military naturally, he totally obliterated us lowly laser amateurs. He ended up with like 5000 shots. I got 75 in and thought I was doing pretty good.

BUT - I did pretty well at the token game where you try to hit the button in time to stop the racing light in just the right place. Won enough coupons to buy my brother an Airhead and a Whistle. THIS IS THE PART WHERE YOU ALL STAND UP AND APPLAUD MY BUTTON-SLAPPING SKILLS.

And just for the record, that crack in the button was ALREADY THERE.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

AWOL Waistline

So, Gap has some really cute spring dresses. Somebody, please go buy them and enjoy wearing them for me. I tried the other day, but even though I'm not technically showing yet, my waistline has so thoroughly disappeared that it was a futile (and somewhat depressing) effort.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Idol, Acne & Chocolate

Last night, J and I settled in for our Tuesday Night Tradition: Wings and American Idol. Lindsey Cardinale, it's time to say goodbye. I think we will shortly be forced to add House to the Tuesday Tradition list, as it has kept us glued to our seats for the second week in a row. Stupid addictive TV shows.

Unfortunately, I have discovered as of late that one of the symptoms of pregnancy is a change in appetite. As in, things that were always good before just aren't good anymore. And I think wings have fallen into that category. This is especially upsetting because I hate to spoil a good tradition. I gave it a valiant effort last night...but I think wings are officially out.

It's becoming painfully obvious that pregnancy has all sorts of "symptoms" that quite frankly, I could do without. I got an update email the other day about "5 embarassing pregancy symptoms: gas & bloating, constipation, hemorrhoids, yeast infections, and diarrhea."


Of course, the article didn't mention acne, stretch marks, fat, cavities and tooth decay, and the myriad of other wonderful contributions of hormones and so forth.

Someone actually complimented me the other day on my skin. Apparently after I scrub, mask, exfoliate, tone, oil-free moisturize, slather on makeup, and style my hair so it covers as much of my face as possible, my skin looks decent to the casual observer. Who'd have thought?

It's times like this when I question God about why 9 months was entirely neccessary. I think tape worms have the right idea.

But that's probably a discussion for another philosophical blog and I'm not in the mood. Right now I just want some chocolate.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

The "S" Word

After a weekend away, J came home last night to a quiet evening of the History Channel and BLT Sandwiches. As we're curled up on the couch, he suddenly spurts out, "It occurred to me this weekend that we're going to have to explain sex to this kid someday."

Yes, he tends to think ahead. Far, far ahead. This morning we were talking about the war with China after 2008. But that's a topic for another blog.

Funny thing was, I had just had a conversation with my parents this weekend on how they and other parents had explained the birds and the bees. As far as we could remember, though my mom used delicately chosen vocabulary, there were no creative analogies or metaphors. It was pretty straight forward talk to both my brother and myself. And she noted that we each only ever asked once.

It was fun in middle and high school to compare notes with friends though on how they learned about THE TOPIC EVERY PARENT FEARS. I had one friend whose parents used keys and doorknobs. Another set of parents used plugs and electrical outlets.

And of course there's always the "Bank of Love" where the man goes to make a deposit in the woman's account. Next week's lesson is what it means when the woman has the "Next Teller Please" sign up.

This blog doesn't usually get a lot of comments, but if you're passing through, feel free to leave a note about how you learned about where babies come from.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Whose Idea Was THAT?

And in other news, the maternity clothing industry has hit a new LOW:

The "Got Milk" Nursing Tank. Eghad.

Dear Dog...

The following post is written solely for the benefit of my dog. And yes, for all you skeptics out there, he DOES understand the English language and is probably at home surfing the internet at this very moment. Unless he's sitting patiently to the side while my cat renames all the desktop icons. Again.

But I digress.

Dearest Hastings,

I appreciate your enthusiasm for life, truly, but I believe there is an area we need to discuss. Namely, the middle-of-the-night bursts of energy that seem to have taken over your sanity and my ability to sleep well over the past two nights.
I understand that because you insist on drinking a half gallon of water just before bed, there will be the occasional - OCCASIONAL - time when you will need to rise in the middle of the night to relieve yourself. I can live with that. But aside from those occasional times, the following is a list of life facts that I hope you will take into consideration in the future - if for nothing else, to save yourself some time and me some sleep.

  1. If you have gone to the bathroom at approximately 4:00am, I will not believe you when you try to convince me you need to go again at 4:30am.
  2. The fact that the cat has just regurgitated an entire day's worth of food outside the bedroom door is not - and I repeat NOT - a good enough reason for us to get out of bed and open the bedroom door. Trust me, it will still be there in the morning and if we can help it, you won't get to eat it anyway, even though it is recycled bits of your own food. Learn to be a little more territorial about your food and maybe the cat will stick to his own "sensitive stomach" food.
  3. Licking the door doesn't open it.
  4. Whining at the door doesn't open it.
  5. Throwing yourself into the door doesn't open it.
  6. Jumping up on the door and scratching your claws all the way down like fingernails on a chalkboard doesn't open the door.
  7. Licking my hand, my elbow, and/or my nose doesn't open the door.
  8. Standing on my hip does not instill me with the urge to play with your rope toy.
  9. Pulling clothes out of the laundry basket may get me out of bed. It may also get you a squirt in the mouth with the bitter spray. BUT IT DOES NOT OPEN THE DOOR.

Just so you know, there is a puppy-sized jail cell at Petco with your name on it. And it will go in the far recesses of the house in which no one but the cats will hear your cries for deliverance...

(Insert maniacal laugh here)

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Tip of the Day

Take the passifier out of your mouth before entering my office to make a sales pitch. Seriously.

Dude Where's My Camera

So if the title of "Best Job Ever" wasn't already taken (by moi), it would have to go to my dear husband J, who works for a production company... in an office building that looks like a cross between the Vegas Strip Hotel and Disney World.
As he's strolling into the office the other day, he notices a multitude of Men in Black standing around with those Matrix ear pieces...oh yeah, and AK-47s in their hands.
It's the Secret Service for the Czech Republic and the President is at his production studio filming for the day.

Just another day in the life of a production company employee.

On a side note, evidently political correctness isn't required when working for the Czech Republic. All the employees in the building filed into work that morning and the Secret Service stood there and watched. But when the one hispanic guy that works for the company walked through the doors, they stopped him and asked if he had a delivery or something.


Monday, March 07, 2005

Baby's First Picture

First Ultrasound 3/7/05

Had my first pre-natal doctor appointment today. It wasn't nearly as bad as I was expecting. J went with me so he could hold my hand during the needle part but they didn't even stick me (though I hear that comes later).

And I even got my first sonogram. Not that you can see much from the picture I got to take home, but we did get to see the baby's heart beating on the screen and got a lesson in detecting which shapless blob was the head and which one was the yolk sac.

Evidently my uterus is shaped like a pork chop and this baby has wedged itself into the narrow tip. Looks like we might be having a shy kid, though I don't see how if it has J for a father.

The medical world seems to be full of terms that sound worse than they are. Never having been through this before, I got a little nervous when the doctor started talking about the sonogram PROBE. Oh, and the CYST on my right ovary where the egg was released that we can't do anything about except watch it right now because it's regulating the progesterone. Apparently that's pretty normal and it should go away sometime after the placenta takes over. And then they start telling you all about the tests that are available to determine Cleft Palate and Downs and Cystic Fibrosis and all kinds of other scary malformations.

But from all appearances everything seems to be pretty normal and there's no cause for alarm yet. YET.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Super-Size My Champagne

Watched Super-Size Me! for the first time. Ewwwwww. It will probably be a little while before I eat at McDonald's again. I have to admit that it does make me twinge everytime I have to categorize a McDonalds or a Wendy's expense as "dining out" in Microsoft Money. They should have a different category for "consuming food products that rot your insides."

Though I doubt the movie has permanently turned me off of fast food, because I am a great believer in moderation, and don't really see any evidence that my once-a-month or less fast food "dining out" experience is going to kill me.

But I did get an education on those chicken nuggets I've always been fond of.

I had a friend in middle school who found a feather in her McDonald's chicken nugget. At the time, that was as gross as it got. Actually, looking back on it, we should have seen it as a relief. You know, hardcore evidence that the food we were consuming was actually made from meat that used to be real at one time.

The McDonalds' around here seem to be making a great effort to overcome past reputations. There are a few locations around our house that we refer to as the Petroleum Club McDonalds. Walking into one of these immediately hits one with a sense of disorientation. Marble floors, mahogany wood walls and bookshelves (complete with classic editions), glass chandeliers, fireplaces, and that little sign in the bathroom that says We strive to keep our restrooms upholding to the highest standards of cleanliness. If this restroom does not meet with your approval, please flip this switch to notify the manager.

The whole Petroleum Club McDonald's experience is a bit surreal. I'm waiting for the day when I order from the dollar menu and get asked if I want champagne with that.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Last night was the second night in a row that I dreamed about being chased and bitten by enormous poisonous spiders.
I don't even want to know what that means.

In addition to scary spiders, I also dreamed that my friend Stephanie and her fiance were trying to buy a new house - 2 doors down from where they are - and Stephanie was using her body to finagle a better price on the house.

If you know Stephanie, you will understand how humorous that thought is.

Of course, in my dream, it all made sense and I was like "oh, so that's how people get a lower price on a house."

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Norton Anti-Valium

Norton Anti-Virus and I have a mutal hate-hate relationship. It seems I can never successfully download a subscription renewal to save my life. This time I ordered the CD version because at least if I have trouble downloading, I still have the DISK SO I CAN TRY AGAIN. I seem to have more luck with disks than with internet downloads anyway.
But even when you purchase the disk and pay the $7.95 to have it shipped to you, you still have to download the Personal Firewall part from the internet.


I HAVE TRIUMPHED! Personal Firewall successfully installed on my machine. I think.

Worst Baby Names en Finale

We have reached the end of our journey on the path of worst baby names in the history of Celtic languages. Thank you for accompanying us and please pay the cashier on your way out. Oh, and feel free to suggest your own names, should you be blessed with any that we have left off the list.