Monday, November 12, 2007

Hell In A Handbasket

So Dave-O sent me this link for this Dante's Inferno Test. Basically you answer this questionnaire and when you're results are tabulated it tells you which level of Hell you would be sent to. Dave received Level 1 which is Purgatory or basically Summer Camp for Sinners minus the ice cream sandwiches and midnight gropings behind the infirmary. All of his friends were in the 1-4 range it seems. And me? Well. Funny thing...

I've been sentenced to the 7th Level of Hell. I was shocked. Am I really that deviant? I mean, I've had my fair share of fun in my 24 years of life, but the 7th Level? Really? Jeez. I guess that just proves that bookworms really are naughty.

Speaking of HI-larious links! Check these out!

Test your vocabulary skills and earn free rice for the UN!

Take a peek at some truly hideous 1970s Catalogues. Jesus, Maria y Jose! Are these things tacky or are they tacky?!?!


I've been on a self imposed hiatus for the last few weeks. I've got deadlines out the whazoo and if I give myself just the tiniest bit of time to mess around with my blog I always end up on Perez Hilton or some other place I really don't belong. That said, I haven't the foggiest idea of how to pull together my list-o-blog topics. I'll just give a list of entertaining snippets.

I was supposed to spend the weekend with Ash but Dave decided to bring home some vile throat plague on Thursday. Since Ash is uber-preggers it would unbelievably irresponsible of me to expose her to this horrid pestilence so I chose to raincheck on the weekend I’ve been looking forward to for weeks.

Ash has decided that no self-respecting WASP-ish wife can have a kitchen lacking a rooster. We decided that kitchen rooster didn’t have a very good ring to it so we settled on “Kitchen Cock” instead. I quite like the sound of that. At any rate, Ash found her very own Kitchen Cock in Hobby Lobby. I can’t wait to see it.

Ash and Ryan have chosen a baby name. I would announce it—but Ash and I had this big huge discussion about a certain SCRUBS episode and I don’t want to be the one to jinx it. (In that episode, Turk and Carla are discussing baby names and decide on Tiger and Angie, I think. Carla forbids Turk from telling anyone their names in fear of ruining them. Turk, of course, tells JD who ends up suggesting the name Angie to a group of pediatric patients who are playing with a hamster that was removed from a kinky patient’s, uh, well, you know. Anywho…Carla and Turk overhear the kids calling the ass hamster “Angie” and Carla loses it.) Since Ash would cut me if her kid’s name is applied to an ass hamster, I shall remain mum.

Bosley has gotten huge. No, really. Only problem: he doesn’t seem to realize that he is the size of a small horse. He still thinks it’s totally OK to squish himself onto one couch cushion which usually entails pinning me into the other corner of the love seat. He’s also become rather possessive of me. Today Dave and I were sitting on the loveseat while we reconciled our checkbook and updated our financial spreadsheets. Bosley planted his huge bohonkus right in front of Dave and made the whiny “I have to potty” noises until Dave finally got up to let him out. Funny thing—Bosley didn’t have to potty. He just wanted Dave to get up so he could hop onto that cushion and lay claim to me. It’s not as romantic as it sounds… This is yet another reason why Dave has given Bosley the new nickname “Coitus Interruptus.”

Sara graciously donated some super awesome oak bedroom furniture to the "Furnish Our New House" project. Can I just tell you guys how AMAZING Sara looks? No, really. She was, like, glowing. Seriously. Radiant. I haven't seen her like that in a long, long, long, long time. And I totally heart her new haircut. I'm sure it's not that new but it's new to me, lol. Oh, and I can't wait to see her Halloween pics...

I’m ¾ of the way through a new novel and putting together a list of prospective agents. I’m also revising a novella for my editor and polishing a pair of smutty tales for submission near the end of the year. If all goes as planned, I should have 3-5 new novellas/novels contracted for next year. All in all, I’m busy, busy, busy!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Cringe & Insert Foot

Aw, poo. So I made a huge faux pas the other day. Sara stopped by to pick up her ladder and drop off a wedding gift (these super gorgeous, hand-painted bowls) and me being the big dummy that I am said something I shouldn't have. See Sara's bf was planning to buy her a certain birthday gift and had enlisted my help in finding exactly what he wanted. I didn't get to see Sara on her birthday (deadlines, etc) and since then we've been swamped with the craziness of life so I hadn't had a chance to speak with her. So there we were, chatting in the living room, and I asked how she was enjoying this certain gift that I wrongly assumed she had received, and yeah, all I got was a confused stare.

At that point I realized that I'd made an ass of myself. I panicked and rambled for a few minutes before Dave finally stepped in to shift the conversation topic to something else. After Sara left, I almost cried because I felt like such a jerk. Needless to say, I'll be way more careful in the future.

Sorry Sara and Clint! I am a complete dork.

Onto less cringe-worthy news...

Dad was in Tomball this week attending some kind of work conference so he stopped by the house yesterday afternoon. Bosley wasn't quite sure he liked a strange man in the house when Dave wasn't around, but after a couple of hours, they became friends. I have a picture of the pair of them snoring and drooling as they napped side by side on the couch. Dad took Dave and I out to dinner--and OMG I'd forgotten how expensive a steak house can be! Thank goodness it was Dad's treat! At least it was super tasty! Dave turned in early because he had to work today, and Dad and I stayed up watching some crappy B movie called "FANGS" about these mutant bats. It was super goofy but funny in that melodramatic way.

After breakfast, Dad headed back to E-town, but he left me a $50 tip for making breakfast burritos and coffee. Sweet, huh? I see a Lane Byrant shopping trip in my very near future, lol.

OK. I should get back to work. I've been watching Divorce Court and Judge Alex for the past few hours. Enough procrastinating. Must write.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Rainy Days & Mondays

It seems the weather and the weekday are conspiring against me. I've been writing like a fiend these past few weeks, but today I have a super case of the BLAHS. Ugh. This is totally reading weather but I've read, like, four books already this month and am so not in the mood to start another one. I've got plotlines unraveling in my head, but each time I sit down in front of my laptop I draw a blank.

And right now I'm totally watching a creepy spider battle raindrops as it descends on a precariously thin web string. I'm almost tempted to open the window and snap the line in half because I loathe that spider. OK. Not that spider in particular but the brood to which it belongs. They're built like black widows but they're brown with orange spots and have mouths that look exactly like Predator. No really. Exactly like it. A few weeks ago, four of them built their webs over the back door so I couldn't even use my backyard, and they would randomly dive bomb Bosley. A few swipes of the flyswatter and a broom fixed that....

Anyways. Where was I? Oh yeah. The BLAHS. I think I may need to recharge the creative juices. Sometimes when I'm juggling two or three projects I start running out of fresh words and sentence structures. Yeah. Not good. Maybe I'll take the evening off, go see a movie or something with Dave-O. We still haven't gone out to celebrate my birthday, and tonight is as good a night as any.

Oh, and a belated INGADINGADURGEN to you all in recognition of Leif Ericson Day last week! If you're not a Spongebob Fan you won't get that. Pity.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Canine Party Line!

Not a lot to report on this front. My test results came back, and despite my chubbiness, I have excellent cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Hell, even with my family history of diabetes, I have low blood sugar, as in almost hypoglycemic. Weird, huh? The FSH result was better than expected so now I get to start a new prescription regimen that--fingers crossed--will help me out!

I finally finished my latest novella and am currently tweaking the synopsis and blurb before I submit to my editor. I plan on re-working my urban fantasy novel and using that as a platform for querying agents. Hopefully, I'll get a start on that tomorrow or early Saturday. We'll see.

So the other night as I sat typing away at the laptop, Bosley bounded downstairs (he was sleeping upstairs with Dave) and started to do his potty dance. I let him out, gave him a treat, and then decided to peel a kiwi for a late night snack. Before I could even take a bite, Bosley decided that he wanted to go back outside. Rolling my eyes, I let him out and glanced at the clock. It was a little after midnight. I noticed that when Bosley ran outside, he went straight for the middle of the yard and started listening to the cacophany of barking dogs in our neighborhood. During one of the lulls, he started barking, then paused, got a few barks in return, and then barked a few more times. When he was finished, he trotted back inside and flopped down on a couch.

Contemplating what I'd just seen, I leaned against the wall and munched on my curiously ham scented kiwi. Since then, I've realized that he's going outside to gossip! Seriously, my dog is like Perez Hilton, lol. He goes out to get the straight cheese, tells a few secrets of his own (cringe!) and then comes back inside.

Man, I can only imagine what kinds of colorful tales he's spilling about us. Maybe he's only bragging about all the cool toys he has, the nifty treats we give him, and the veritable smorgasbord of yummies he ingests all day. Nah. Who the hell am I kidding? I know he's out there giving them all the juiciest details of his owners' bedroom antics.

No wonder all the dogs in our neighborhood give us The Look when we're checking the mail...

Friday, September 21, 2007

Better Now

I've been a recluse lately, but that's because I've been majorly stressing about a doctor's appointment. This week, I started seeing a new OB/GYN who specializes in infertility. Switching doctors is a major pain, but anyone who has ever dealt with reproductive issues will understand how terrifying it can be. Turns out I was stressing over nothing, lol.

For the first time in my life, I have a doctor who LISTENS! She walked into the exam room, introduced herself, and started chatting with me. We talked about me--occupation, family, marriage, goals, and lastly health issues. I was just waiting for her dismiss my symptoms with the usual reply, "Well, you know you are a fat cow." But she didn't even broach the subject of weight. I was the one who brought it up.

Her reply: You should lose the weight because of a family history of heart disease and diabetes. Losing weight will likely have little effect on your lack of ovulation.

Her nurse's comment: Honey, we get ladies in here every day who are pregnant or TTC who are double your size. We manage, and so can you.

Dr. A didn't try to shove birth control pills down my throat as all my past doctors have. Since I don't ovulate taking BCPs is sort of pointless, you know? That said, we did discuss placing me on them if we can force ovulation. We discussed all sorts of treatment options from medications I might try to more drastic interventions like ovarian drilling (yikes!) or a double wedge resection. Thankfully, those are last resort options. Also she ordered a full blood panel and will be calling me early next week to discuss the lab results and schedule a follow-up.

And, no, Dave-O and I are NOT trying to conceive. Dudes, we haven't even unpacked from the move. Babies are, like, way down the line. Besides, I'm in that "it's irresponsible to conceive when you're overweight" camp. I know. I know. I should support my BBW sisters, but I just can't. Just because you CAN get pregnant, doesn't mean you SHOULD. Flame on...

As I was sitting in the exam room waiting for Dr. A, I could hear the patients on either side of me. One was a youngish sounding woman who was preparing for her first ultrasound. She was on the phone and begging her husband to come, but from what I could tell, he wasn't all that worried about showing up on time. On the other side was a couple who were arguing about having to wait for their doctor. I couldn't hear much of it, but what I did hear was just terrible.

Husband: I wouldn't have to be here right now if you're plumbing wasn't broken.

OMG! I know, right! The tone he used was just, well, scathing. That statement was pretty simple, but the resenment behind it was fierce. I mean, it's pretty obvious that he despises his wife because she's infertile. All I heard after that was her crying.

My first thought was, "You're a dick!" My second thought was, "A baby ain't gonna fix that marriage."

You know I used to have these twinges of guilt because I would think, "I'm going to be the reason Dave doesn't have kids." There was even a time when I thought it would be selfish of me to stay with him since I have compromised fertility...but then he proposed and I realized that he wanted to marry me even though he was totally aware of my issues. I can't even begin to explain how much guilt that alleviated.

Also, I have to give a little shout-out to Ash. Seriously, I don't know what I would do without her. We're both in the same boat: newly married, building/trying to build families, figuring out what the hell life is about, etc. There are things that I can share with her that I can't with anyone else. It's nice to have a friend like that.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Carpet Burns

So I have carpet burns on my right elbow and calf, but I didn't get them in the fun way. I stayed up all night starting a new novella that has to be submitted by September 30 for consideration in an erotic romance anthology, and when the sun came up, I decided that it was time for bed. I let the dog out, gave him a treat, and then we trudged upstairs. After brushing my teeth, I peeled off my scratchy, dry contacts, slipped them in a clean case, and clambered into bed. I had just fallen asleep when Bosley started barking and jumping and slapping the bed because he needed to go out--again.

I tried to convince him that he could wait another hour until Dave-O came home, but no, he wouldn't have any of it. Pissed and grumpy, I stomped out of the bedroom, hands extended as I felt my way along. (I'm nearly blind without my corrective lenses so the world is just a big ole blur when I'm sans contacts.)

Bosley decided it was playtime. He jumped against my back, nipped at my ankles, and was generally being an ass. Being a tired, frustrated bitch, I snapped at him to go downstairs--and he did.

As he bounded down the first two stairs, he bumped against my leg and caused me to lose my balance. I tried to grab the banister, but it was too late. Flailing my arms, I tumbled down the stairs, smacking my butt, my ribs, and cheek. At the very last second, I remembered to pull my head in and managed not to knock myself out when I slammed into the wall on the second landing. (Our staircase is shaped like a square U so you go up seven steps, then there's a landing, then you go up seven more steps and you've reached the second floor.) There I was writhing in pain and bleeding and what is Bosley doing? Barking. Not that playful bark, but that ear-splitting, stomach rattling bellow that he uses when he's afraid or warning us.

After crying for a few minutes, I pulled myself to my knees and managed to crawl down to the first floor. Bosley was still begging to be let out so I made it to the patio door, let him out, and then we headed back upstairs. Bosley seemed to realize that he caused my fall so he hung way back, letting me get all the way to the second floor before he started hopping the steps three and four at a time. I cleaned up the bleeding carpet burns on my arm and leg, rinsed the blood from my mouth (I bit my tongue, I think) and then collapsed into bed. I called Dave, wanting him, needing him--but he wasn't even close to coming home. Surprise, surprise.

I fell asleep and woke up an hour or two later when Dave finally made it home. Then I went back to sleep. I woke up again around 3. I know it's not fair and it's really ridiculous, but I'm still peeved at Dave. Every time I get hurt, he's never around. I've fallen out of showers, cut myself, burned myself, etc, and I always have to deal with it alone. I know. I know. The man works, cut him some slack, blah, blah, blah. How childish, right? But there it is.

Anywho. I should go finish dinner. I may be grumpy with him, but I'm still going to feed him properly--even if I'm hobbling around. For lunch, I made tomato basil bisque and grilled cheese sandwiches. Tonight it's braised ribs, potato salad, garden salad, and something for dessert. Pudding, maybe?

Lots to do. I'm off.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Quarter Century

Today is my parents' 25th Wedding Anniversary!! Congratulations Mom & Dad!!

Having been married just under 3 months, I find the idea of celebrating 25 years thrilling. We'll see if the attitude changes between now and then, though. :)

That's it for today. Back to the cracking that old chestnut...

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Out of Touch

Yeah, yeah, yeah. I've been MIA lately, but that's because I've been cracking the whip and forcing the Inspirado. Mama wants some granite countertops, lol.

Actually, though, this post is about Dave's company. No, I'm not going to name said company. Some of you know us, but most of you don't. Rather than get into a big stink about bad publicity, I'm going to leave the name out.

That said....

Today Dave is at work and while he was browsing the schedule for overtime, one of his supervisors decided to make a snarky remark about "living within our means." Dave being the sweetheart that he is (and no fan of confrontation) let it slide. A few minutes ago, he told me about this remark, and it super pissed me off. I mean irate to the point of wanting to hex someone's balls off!

Who the fuck is this guy to lecture us about living within our means? Has he seen our budget? If he had, he would see the following:

1) Our mortgage and escrow is less than 26% of our gross income. (And no, we don't belong to that group of dummies who got ARMS without understanding that it will, in fact, adjust! We have a 30 year fixed rate at 6 point something percent.)
2) We have NO car payment and our insurance is only $57/month.
3) We spend $250 on groceries/month and $250-275 on gas.
3) Utilities (water, gas, electricity) are less than $200 each month because we keep the thermostat up, only water the lawn in the evenings, and have the water heater set low.
4) Cell Phones and Internet cost another $200 but are necessary for communication and working from home.
5) Student loans (his and mine) eat up $200 of our budget.
6) Feeding Bos and providing meds averages out to 65/month.
7) We have no credit cards, no satellite or cable, rarely (read: once a month) have dinner at a restaurant, and have seen 2 movies since January.
8) Oh, and yes, being the splurge whores that we apparently are, Dave and I do spend $18/month on Netflix.

Now, call me crazy, but I think that's a rather lean budget. Believe me. If I could find a place to squeeze extra money, I would. All of that takes up 3/4 of Dave's net pay. So no, we're not poor, and yeah, we live comfortably, but we definitely need the OT every now and then.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, where does all of our extra income go? If you guessed medical bills, you're right! Yeah. Remember when Dave had to be hospitalized with pancreatitis? We're still paying for that because, yep, his insurance didn't cover most of it.

It's times like this that I see the glaring differences between Dave and me. Had it been me in his position, I would have scathingly pointed out that if Dave's salary tracked with the cost of living and if his company provided full vision and dental benefits or simply BETTER health insurance, a lot of the employees at Dave's company wouldn't have to work two jobs. Hell, some of Dave's colleagues qualify for WIC and Medicaid! Yeah. That's fucking pathetic that these people have one of the most important jobs in society, but they're paid less than the people who push paper in the main offices.

Just to go off on a tangent for a sec: Why is it that we pay the most important jobs (teachers, police, fire, ems, researchers) the very least while people who do absolutely jack squat (athletes come to mind) earn obscene amounts of money? Seriously, when is kicking a football or shooting a three pointer ever going to cure cancer or revive a drowned child or teach your dyslexic child how to read? Priorities! Where the hell are our priorities?!?!

Back to the issue at hand--the rude and obviously out of touch supervisor--I also would have pointed out that the reason Dave picks up OT is to add money to our savings cushion. After buying the house, paying for a wedding, all of the extra medical expenses last year, appliances, and moving costs, we're a little strapped. And no, we're not saving for something stupid like a boat or a pool table or whatever.

Being the selfish and extravagant hacks that we apparently are, Dave and I are saving to start a family. Not so much for the nursery furniture and such, but for the adoption fees, etc. Since I have shriveled prunes for ovaries, conceiving won't be a walk in the park, and, of course, Humana doesn't cover any of the medical interventions I might try. No, I don't mean IVF treatments. I mean simple shit like Clomid. It's ridiculous really that we have to pay $60/month for my insurance, but there isn't a damn thing that I need that they'll pay for! WTF?

Oh, and speaking of the devil, did I mention that our insurance coverage was terminated--on our wedding day? Oh, yeah. Funny thing, though, is that the cost of my coverage has been deducted from Dave's paycheck since June. Hmmm. I wonder where that money went? The really messed up part of this story is that we were mailed new insurance cards in July, but when Dave went to pick up his prescriptions on Labor Day, the CVS pharmacy tech informed us that our insurance had been terminated MONTHS ago! Am I the only person who thinks we should have received a notice? When my dad's insurance was going to kick me off because I had reached the age limit, I got not one, but two notices at 60 days and 30 days. My parents also got duplicate notices. So where were the notices from Humana? Or Dave's HR? Shouldn't THEY have realized our coverage was going to lapse?

Eventually, Dave's HR and Humana worked out the issue, but obviously, they're still passing the blame back and forth. Quite frankly, I don't care who's to blame. I just don't want it to happen again. God forbid I had been in a wreck or Dave had fallen down the stairs! We would have been royally screwed.

Finishing up my little rant, I think that if this supervisor was really concerned with the welfare of his employees that he would make it a priority to champion their needs. Higher salaries, better benefits, a real cost of living study to employ in salary adjustments, etc. Life might be cushy on his supervisor's salary, but the people working in the trenches (and jesus, yes, i still remember the exhaustive, thankless life that is a medic's career) rarely get the compensation that they deserve. There's nothing wrong with a husband wanting to support his wife and dog solely on his salary. I still haven't figured out how the medics with stay-at-home spouses and children make ends meet. I suspect they're the medics who have second jobs.

Anywho. Seeing as we're such horrible spendthrifts, I should probably get back to cranking out tawdry novellas to earn a steady paycheck. Maybe if I'm really lucky I can force a bestselling literary novel out of the Muse. Then Dave can work part-time (since he really loves his job) and spend the rest of his leisurely hours holed up in our bedroom, helping me, ahem, research my latest erotica plotline...

Sunday, September 02, 2007


It's really late or super early depending on how you view time, and I am totally procrastinating. I have maybe half a chapter left to write on my latest novella, but I keep finding all of these really important, super interesting things to do. And why? Because I loathe editing. Seriously. I would rather cage fight Joey, Marcos, and Tricia for the last spoonful of Ama's arroz con pollo than have to edit my rough draft into a presentable final draft which then morphs into a string of back and forth revisions with the Editor.

Oh, and just for shits and giggles, if the four of us were ever to engage in such a cage match, I would tell everyone to place their bets on Tricia. Don't be fooled by the princess attitude and pretty face! She's wily and cunning and has the stamina of a Force Recon Marine. I'm telling you, the girl is fierce like a tiger! Rarr! I wouldn't be surprised if some day she's gracing the cover of Soldier of Fortune. I can see it now. She's wearing a crisply tailored black Dior suit, red Laboutin slingbacks, and is dripping Harry Winston diamonds. She'll have a .338 Lapua slung over her left shoulder, a cell phone pressed to her left ear, and her favorite Balenciaga bag dangling from her right arm--with a Fairbairn-Sykes hiding inside, of course.

Anywho. So I have this huge list o' topics for blogging, but none of them are meaty enough for a full post. Here's the list.

1) I am beginning to suspect that Bosley has deep seated issues that may or may not stem from the removal of his, uh, chestnuts. Firstly, he has a crazy foot fetish. No, really. Ask Sara or any of the other visitors we've had. If you're barefoot in this house, prepare to be suckled by a Great Dane. And yes. It is exactly as disturbing as it sounds. Secondly, he's sort of masochistic. He chews on his paw and makes these really, really inappropriate sounds. It's almost reached the point of bizarreness that I'm thinking about tracking down one of those dog whispering quacks.

2) My favorite blog, Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Books, runs this weekly video post, and this week's video is HILARIOUS! It's called Love Story and is a short animated take on the dating scene for modern ladies. Give it a peek. You'll appreciate the humor. Also, the blog itself is worth browsing. The critique of romance novel covers is my particular favorite!

3) Can I just tell you how funny HOT FUZZ is? OK. Sure. It's humor isn't on par with SHAUN OF THE DEAD, but sometimes I like to watch a comedy where you have to think to get some of the jokes. If you've watched a fair share of action and/or cop movies of the "Buddy Cop" genre, then you'll get the subtle spoofiness. And, yeah, the violence is gratuitous, but it's not, you know, gross or disturbing. It's usually rather funny. I particularly enjoyed David Bradley's (plays Argus Filch in the HP flicks) mumbling scene, and of course, the two-footed flying side kick into creepy grandma's nose...

4) Speaking of films! I watched this amazing foreign film the other morning. I can't stop gushing about it! It's called Open Hearts (Elsker dig for evigt) and has such a gripping storyline. A young couple, Cecille and Joachim, have just gotten engaged and are planning their marriage when Joachim is paralyzed by a car collision. The woman, Marie, who caused the accident can't handle what she's done so she instructs her husband, Niels a surgeon, to make amends. He does the only thing he knows how to do: he listens to Cecille. And that's when it gets complicated. The motivations of a middle aged man, beautiful and confused young girl, oblivious wife, angst-ridden teen daughter, and a self-hating quadriplegic all conspire to form a heartbreakingly honest portrait of reality.

The acting and cinematography aren't polished so when you're watching you feel like you're actually watching this story unfold between the characters. The English subtitles are fantastic and easily read, but if you're comfortable with German, you should be able to understand the Danish dialogue without having to glance at the subtitles too often. For maybe the first ten minutes, I was tied to the subtitles, but once I figured out the Danish intonation and pronunciation, I was OK.

It's a beautiful example of why sometimes tiny foreign films are a thousand times better than Hollywood blockbusters. In the end it boils down to Hollywood predictability versus inspired film making. Oh, and in true Hollywood fashion, it appears that Zach Braff has signed on to do a remake of this film. Cripes! When are we going to learn that not EVERY foreign film needs to be remade? Seriously, would it kill us to watch a subtitled film? People in other countries do it all the time. Or, you know, we could broaden our horizons and learn a few languages. I'm telling you, after the first two languages, it's much easier to continue adding new ones.

5) Two words: Fan Fiction. Yes, sigh, I must confess. I heart FanFic! When I'm in a slump, it's one of the ways I recapture the Inspirado. Either, I write a short piece or I read some of the better stuff. If you're every bored, give it a try. You might find something that piques your interest!

OK. I think I've goofed off enough. Sun will be up soon, and I've got a self-imposed deadline looming. Must get cracking!

Monday, August 27, 2007


OK. Am I the only person disgusted by the incessant "chipotle" marketing campaign? What is with corporate America choosing the most exotic sounding spice or ingredient in ethnic cooking and exploiting it like some two-bit pimp turning out his latest crack whore for a stroll down the track in search of a trick. Every fast food chain and franchise restaurant has their own "chipotle" flavored meal. Chipotle marinated chicken, chipotle dressings and mayonnaises, chipotle wraps, chipotle this, chipotle that--enough!

Also I find it INCREDIBLY insulting that all of the lastest McDonald's commercials that showcase their Chipotle BBQ Snack Wrap have "Latino" music (heavy on the drums and maracas,) brown skinned girls with tons of chica attitude, baggy clothes, big earrings, and of course this skeevy Rico Suave-esque voice over because, you know, ALL hispanics have an accent. UGH!

And it's not just chipotle! Miller has that new Miller Chill beer which is just a ripoff of chelada style drinks. (Chelada is a slang term for beer and a squirt of lime served on the rocks with a salted rim. It's a combination of chela, beer, and helada, iced or with ice. There's your linguistics/culture lesson for the day. Enjoy.) Oh, and guess what? The commercial for Miller Chill has--you guessed it--an accented voice over. Come on!

There's also this bizarre "mango salsa" trend. I don't know where the hell that started, but it's just weird. Look, I love salsa as much as the next person, but I'm so not into fruit salsas. Besides isn't mango salsa really just mango chutney? Methinks someone in the marketing department of some huge restaurant corporation was all, "Hmm. How can we pander to the Latino market? I mean, they are the biggest untapped market segment. I know! I'll just rename these basic menu items and tell the recipe department to throw in some mangoes here, a little lime there, and some kind of exotic spice, too!"

Here's the thing. As far as I'm aware, I've never in my life eaten chipotle, and Ama, my grandmother, cooked for the extended family all the time! So if chipotle is such an authentic "Latino" ingredient, why is it that NONE of my Latina friends have ever eaten it? Hmm?

I guess I'm just tired of having my culture exploited to sell really gross food and surprisingly bad beer. Seriously, folks, exploit someone else for a change. I think we've been exploited long enough.

Friday, August 24, 2007

A Sometimes Slatternly, Always Naughty Housewife

So OK. I'm trying to adjust to the idea of being a hausfrau. Yes, I work from home, but for the most part, I am a housewife. Now, look, I'm a diehard feminist, but I don't see anything wrong with being a housewife. I mean, shouldn't I have the CHOICE to live however the hell I please? Isn't that the whole point of feminism? Giving women the privilege of CHOOSING their fates? So what is up with all of the housewife bashing?

Generally these are the responses I get:

"And you're happy staying at home all day? Don't feel like you're wasting your potential?"

"Oh." Yep. Just "Oh." Usually in a clippped, semi-conceited, almost always disgusted tone, regularly followed with, "Well, don't let yourself go!" or "Have fun watching your soaps!"

Um. OK. First of all, I rarely watch soaps--and even then it's because I'm trying to figure out what the hell makes them so addicting and/or appealing so I can mimic that in my erotica. Secondly, to imply that being a housewife somehow alters my intelligence is simply insulting. The very idea that alternating household chores with working on my latest chapter or synopis will reduce my IQ is just ridiculous. It's not even worth discussing.

But seriously, all you non armpit shaving, overbearing, manhating slags who feel the need to bombard me--and my fellow hausfraus--with negative comments for choosing to stay home and play house, well, you can all FUCK OFF!

Ah, I feel SO much better now! So moving on....

I decided that I needed to find some kind of community, preferably online, for young housewives. Being that I am obsessed with Google, I type "housewife" into the search box, press enter, and...Oh My God!

Besides the 2 relevant resuls, here's a sample of what else popped up--and yes, these are the LEAST filthy results that I feel comfortable typing here for public view:

Housewife Hunnies
Cheating Housewives
Housewife Bangers
Wives In Need
Extramarital Affairs (A Dating Service for Married Folks)
Wild Wives Club

Uh, OK. So those sites weren't really useful to my needs. Depressingly enough, the other two were a bust also. One was a "How-To" guide for being the "perfect" housewife and entailed hours of scrubbing, primping, mixing drinks, and all kinds of other 50s era subservient BS. Yeah, what the fuck ever. As for the second result, well, it was all geared toward women with kids...lots of them.

I tried searching "new housewife" or "young housewife" and after sorting through all the porn sites, I found sites for chicks who a) can't clean, b) can't cook, c) have absolutely no idea how to maintain a budget, or d) are generally disasters. OK. I maintain a detailed budget with a six month projection, share housekeeping duties with Dave-O, understand and regulary practice the basics of housekeeping. My house isn't spotless, but it's presentable. As for the cooking, well, I'll be a little conceited here and state that I am a hellaciously amazing cook. The only women I've ever met who are better cooks are: Mom, Ama, and Agnes G.

So yeah. I think I'm covered on all those fronts. Sigh. Maybe there's just nothing out there for me--or maybe I should start my own group.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Fruit Salad

Today, I met a friend from my "glory days" at EHS for lunch at Doc Greens. Layna was one of my closest friends at EHS. She was someone that I truly enjoyed spending time with, and now that we're all growed up, it's nifty to go out on lunch dates and such. Recently Layna graduated from TAMU and has taken a position in a nearby alternative education program teaching high school science. I know. Tough gig, right?

Anyways. We made our lunch date via Myspace because, you know, cell phones are so blase. I left the house around 11 because traffic on Texas Ave is absolute mayhem with all of the lane closures and construction, but I make it to the restaurant with maybe 8 minutes to spare. I call Layna for an ETA, and she tells me that she can't find the restaurant. No biggie. I had a hard time finding it, too. It's sort of tucked away on the backside of a mini shopping center on a random street next to an HEB on Texas Avenue South.

Layna: I'm at Hastings. Have I gone too far?
Me: Yep. Cut through the HEB parking lot and you'll see it.
Layna: Is it close to that Starbucks.
Me: Hmmm.

This is when I realize that Layna has gone to the wrong HEB, lol! Now the reason this is an easy mistake is because the geniuses who designed B/CS and named the streets divided Texas Avenue (the main drag, if you will) in this way:

In College Station, the street is labeled Texas Avenue South
In Bryan, the street is labeled South Texas Avenue--even though it's actually NORTH.

Yes. Let that sink in for a second. Now. Does that make any freakin' sense?!?! Oh, and did I mention that both HEBs on Texas Ave are right next to a Hastings? WTF!

After a good laugh, Layna finds her way to Doc Greens. The food was great, but the ordering could have been a little more efficient. Also, the seating arrangement in their hallway of a dining room was totally ridiculous. At any rate, we made it work and had a delicious lunch and a great talk. We discussed everything from her new job, my decision to find a new agent, generational poverty, teaching standards, schools without A/C, etcetera.

On the drive home, I started thinking about salads which made me think about fruit salad which made me think about apples which made me think about PCOS. I know that's a totally random segue, but that's exactly how my mind works. See women with PCOS are usually shaped like apples, but the thing is, I wasn't always shaped like an apple. I started out a fuzzy little peach, then I stretched into an oddly proportioned banana, and then blissfully, I began to blossom into that oh-so coveted pear shape. Why oh why couldn't I stay a pear? Even a slighty lumpy, ripe pear would have been cool, but nope, I began to take the shape of an apple, not quite a red delicious, though. More like a Pink Lady.

So as I'm driving I start to think, crap, what's next? Grape? Cantaloupe? Watermelon? By the time I'm eighty, I'll have gone through all the stages of a fruit salad!

Oh well. It could be worse. I could look like a mushroom! Dave hates mushrooms...but he loves fruit salad, especially the apples.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


For the last month or so I've been contemplating where exactly my writing career is going. SANGRE was a well-written literary women's fiction novel, but it just wasn't right for the current market. No matter how many acquiring editors at the NYC houses loved the story, the characters, the strong writing, (insert positive comment here), the book just wasn't going to sell. And that's OK. Not every book that's written makes it to publication.

My agent and I decided that it was probably a good idea to shelve SANGRE for the time being and pursue a different manuscript...except the agent wasn't very keen on any of the manuscripts I sent her way. Yeah. That's a problem. My agent felt I should write another literary novel, but I just didn't feel the urge to write another literary novel. I wrote a dark urban fantasy novel, a Latino themed YA, a historical romance, and maybe 5 erotic romance novellas.

So while I sat there for a month trying to force another literary novel, I began contemplating an agent switch. It happens all the time. Some authors use different agents for every book while others make the switch when they want to go a different route with an author. And others, like Jennifer Crusie, get a pink slip from their agents--but in a good way. I spoke to Dave about the potential agent switch and the fact that it would mean yet another round of querying and nailbiting. He supported my decision, certain that a new agent would mean better opportunities.

I sat on my hands for a few days, wondering how best to end my relationship with my agent. A certified letter? A phone call? A nice email? I checked my contract again and again, rereading the termination clause word for word to make sure that I wouldn't be in breech of contract when I delivered my letter/phone call/email.

But then one afternoon last week I got an email from my agent. Something along the lines of: It's been fun, toots, but I think it's time we break up.

Can you say relieved?!?! I know. For the first time ever, I was GLAD to be dumped, lol. Now I'm not the bad guy. I'm the coward, sure, but not the bad guy!

So now I'm evaluating my options. I'm not sure which manuscript to use as my querying platform in a search for a new agent. At least this time I've got some publishing credentials under my belt...but that also means that I have to find an agent willing to handle my mainstream/genre fiction written under my real name and my erotic romances written/published under a pen name. Yeah. That makes it a little more difficult but not impossible. Off the top of my head, I can think of seven authors who write tawdry erotic novellas under pen names and serious fiction under another name.

Anywho. It's a little scary being on the unagented side of things, but that's okay. I've got books lined up for publication without an agent which buys me a little time to drag my feet and find a new one. Who knows? I might find the agent of my dreams this time around!

Back to writing....

Monday, August 20, 2007


So my Pawpaw (Mom's Dad) had a heart attack last week and had a quad bypass a few days ago. Mom and Joey took off for Ohio (where Pawpaw lives) the day of his surgery and will be staying up there until who knows when. There's a lot of uncertainty right now. Everyone's talking about survival percentages, recovery times, and quality of life. Someone mentioned that if he makes it through recovery the surgery should buy him at least 12 months.

12 months.

Man, when I was a kid a year was such a LONG time, but now, it's just not. Why is it that as we age each year seems to be shorter than the next? Perspective perhaps? Who the hell knows.

Part of me is really optimistic about the entire situation. Two years ago Pawpaw was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer and given an iffy prognosis, but after a thorough course of treatment, he beat the cancer and kept on keeping on. Who knows? He might whip this heart problem, too, and live another 5-10 years.

It may sound odd, but I've never had a relative who passed with advanced warning. What I mean is that all of my relatives who have checked out of this realm went suddenly. In Apa's case, we visited him at the hospital the night prior to his death. He was laughing and telling jokes and seemed ready to be discharged--but then Dad got an early morning phone call. He took off immediately, but by the time Mom, Joey, Marcos, Tricia, and I got there, he was gone. Mawmaw went the same way. She made phone calls that afternoon, talked to everyone, and then--wham!--that evening she had a massive heart attack and passed.

Some people say that being able to prepare for an impending death is easier than suddenly losing someone and having to process all of those conflicting emotions at once. I don't know. I think maybe I prefer the sudden death bit. I did a little Hospice work that summer between graduating and beginning college, and I have to say that watching a loved one languish and waste away didn't seem to make the passing any less painful for the families involved.

Anywho. Moving away from the depressing subject now...

I've been getting tons of emails and messages from people asking when I was going to update the blog (for some reason I have a huge readership via Myspace, 791 hits last week/post.) Now you all know why. I've tried to write a post, but I just had this huge blank. It's coming back to me now, though.

That's all for today. Tomorrow I'll fill everyone in on a recent career move that I think help steer my writing in the right direction.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Ruff Days

Not much to report here. Lots of SSDD. Dave's had the last four days off, and yeah, I totally love him, but cripes! I have my own schedule of sleeping, eating, and working, and when Dave's here for more than two, three days at the most, well, we start to get gripey. Not about anything important, of course, just stupid little stuff. We've always been like this so it's become a running joke of sorts.

Anyways. We went to the DPS today, I changed my name and address. I didn't realize that I'd have to take another picture since I renewed my license less than ten months ago so Dave had quite a laugh when the lady said, "And step behind the green square, please." I was in blue jean gauchos, one of Dave's plain grey t-shirts, my lime green and hot pink 'ROOS, with my hair clipped up, curls all over the place. At least I had the foresight to put on some concealer and powder and my diamond studs before leaving the house--otherwise ICK! I would have won the Frumpy HouseFrau Award.

Bos has had a "ruff" couple of days. Get it, ruff? A ha ha ha...sigh. I'm so lame today.

Where was I? Oh yeah. Bos. He's been really snippy this last week, chewing and snapping at whatever is near him. I've noticed that when he's going through a growth spurt he's a real piss head and super manic. One minute he's my little snugglebumpkins and the next he's gnawing on my ankle like it's a knuckle bone straight from the butcher. Needless to say, we're working on that.

Yesterday while Dave and I were out buying groceries, Bos must have gotten bored and decided that Dave's latest Stephen King paperback looked like the tastiest of all chew toys. I was stunned when I opened the front door and found Bosley sitting in a pile of ripped pages, paper confetti still raining down on him. We're talking 700 plus pages of paper shredded all over the living room! What a freakin' nightmare!

After that he was on Dave's shit list. Oh, and did I mention that he decided to pinch off a few upstairs in the hallway. Yeah. Dave was steamed. Bosley seems to sense when Dave is angry because he does a lot of hiding behind my legs or under the nearest table. Weenie.

Then last night, Dave and I are snuggled on the couch watching The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Bosley, who's sleeping between the couch and the wall, shoots up, spins around, and starts making snapping noises at the baseboard. Curious, I lean over to see what he's up to--and I almost pee myself. It's a SCORPION!! A HUGE EFFING SCORPION IN MY LIVING ROOM CRAWLING ACROSS THE CARPET.

I'm shaking and screaming for Dave to kill it, but Bosley has decided to play the brave defender and is trying to bite the damn thing. I try to yank him away, but at almost 6 months and ripped like a body builder, he's impossible to out muscle. Needless to say, the scorpion bit him two or three times on his chin before Dave was able to get in between them and stomp the bastard to death.

When we finally settled down, Bosely didn't seem the least bit worried about the scorpion bites. He wanted to play and run and jump and throw his toys. Normally, I don't care, but it was, like, 1 o'clock in the morning. So we head up to bed and Bos follows us up and for like, five minutes, he was nice and calm, but then he picked up his rope toy and started galloping from the bedroom to the hallway, furiously swinging the toy side to side, hitting the wall, the door, the TV stand, and our bed. Again, if he was a small dog, I wouldn't care, but when 60 plus pounds of awkward, stumbling Great Dane is hurtling around your bedroom, it's impossible to sleep. Unless you're Dave and apparently you can sleep through anything.

I take Bos downstairs and put him outside to run and play. It's three o'clock. I'm bleary-eyed but suffering insomnia so I figure, "Eh, what the hell. I'll write." I grab a notebook and pen and start writing longhand. I get through half a chapter before Bosley decided he's ready to come in. I pet him, close the door, and give him one those fake bacon treats he loves so much. He gobbles it down, gulps down some water, and then starts pacing nervously. I watch him intently, certain that he's about to start barking. He heads into the living room, looks at the door, looks at me, looks at the door, looks at me, looks up the stairs, looks at me and then opens his mouth. I cringe, ready for an eardrum bustin bark, but instead, I hear SPLAT!

Oh, that's right. He puked everywhere. Jesus, Maria y Jose! Like gallons of the stuff. I mean, I'm no wimp when it comes to puke, but this stuff was sour and brown and bacony. Ugh.

*Icky story ahead. You might want to skip down to the next paragraph* Just a random story from my days as a medic: Once, I had to ride an emergency transfer from E-town to San Angelo (fifty plus miles) with a bazillion year old woman that had a fecal impaction, some kind of lower GI blockage, and a horrendous case of the egg burps. As we were loading her onto the gurney for the transfer, she started dry heaving and then vomiting and--well--let's just say that it looked like Wolf Brand Chili and smelled like a broken sewer main. It was horrendous. Imagine that for fifty plus miles, in the back of an ambulance, with like minimal air flow. The second we pulled into the ER Bay, I freakin' bailed, sucking air like a fish tossed onto a pier.

After his gastric episode, Bosley followed me upstairs and settled down. He slept straight through the night and most of the morning. Dave and I felt so bad for him--first the scorpion, then the pukes--that we stopped by our local PetCo dog bar to pick up a pound of tasty treats. You know, things like those dog cookies, the peanut butter bears, the veggie o's... Man, he loves those.

A'ight. This post is pretty boring, but bear with me. I'll have something better tomorrow. Hopefully.

Back to my writing...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Upwardly Mobile

After spending the last two days loading the final boxes into truck, scouring the apartment from top to bottom, and taking PLENTY of clear pictures as evidence, Dave and I have officially finished moved! And it could not have come a day sooner. We've been plagued with problems from the start and have made a pact that if we decide to sell this house and build/buy another one we WILL hire movers and Merry Maids to give the house a final cleaning before sale.

You know, Dave and I were laughing as we packed up the kitchen and reminisced about moving into our apartment in May of 2004. At the time, we lived in separate apartments at the same shat-tastic complex. When I had chosen that particular apartment complex, I was looking for a place close to campus, on the university bus route, and of course, cheap enough to fit into a budget based on my embarassingly low medic's salary. My parents subsidized part of the rent and utilities, but I was on my own for everything else. Not a bad deal, really. It totally taught me how to pinch a penny until Abe Lincoln shrieked for mercy.

Anywho. Where was I? Ah, yes. Shat-tastic apartment.

Dave could have afforded to live in a much nicer complex, but the poor schmuck was smitten and wanted live close to me. He ended up in an apartment three buildings away, maybe a three minute walk. We lived there for a year before deciding to consolidate households and get an apartment together. We were so excited to be moving into a nice complex, a place with great windows, a spacious floorplan, and an updated kitchen.

But then the apartment flooded on our move-in day. And two weeks later. And again four months later. And--well--you get the picture. It was a never-ending cycle of flooding, maintenance issues like a sputtering A/C, lights that flickered, a badly repaired kitchen, etc. So yesterday as we're scrubbing the stove, we realize that compared to the new house we were living in squalor.

OK. So not really squalor, but you know what I mean. When you've got a brand new four bedroom house with clean carpet and bright paint and no funky odors from the previous tenant who may or may not have kept a shrimp stand in the master closet, you really start to see the blatant discrepancy between the two.

We also had a pretty good laugh trying to figure out if one of us married up, down, or made a lateral move. Even though I pointed out that I benefited more financially from this whole ad hoc socio-political alliance by gaining a steady income and health insurance, Dave decided he was the one that married up. I'd like to think of it more as a lateral move, but whatever. I'm not going to argue. It's kind of nice to think that I'm the prize!

Either way, we decided that compared to a lot of people, we're doing OK. We have a steady, loving relationship, a beautiful home, a spoiled ass dog, supportive family, amazing friends, and low overall debt. Are there a ton of things that we want? Uh, yeah. New furniture, a second vehicle, a new lawnmower--all those things would be great, and sure, we could just charge away on our credit cards, but screw that! I like not struggling each month. I love going to bed at night knowing that we're completely solvent. So yeah. We make do with what we have and appreciate the hell out of it as we build up the savings to pre-wedding and house purchase status and put away a little here and there for our vacation fund.

Our game plan is pretty simple: Live Within Our Means. If we stick to that, there's no stopping us. We're upwardly mobile now and the sky's the limit.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

I am Du'a Khalil

I’ve been wanting to blog about Du’a Khalil for some time but haven’t been sure if that’s really something that anyone would read. I try to keep my posts on track with the whole “random musing” angle, but this morning, I think I’ll veer off course a bit. Although, I suppose this could be considered a random musing since I was reminded of Du’a Khalil while reading through this AP wire about a 13 year old girl dying after a botched female circumcision.

For those of you not familiar with that rather barbaric custom, a female circumcision or female genital mutilation occurs in various disturbing forms, including the splitting of the clitoris or the complete removal of the clitoris and the labia minora. The third type—and this is really the worst—involves the removal of the clitoris, labia minora and majora. But, oh no, they don’t stop there. They then stitch up the gaping hole left behind and tie the girl’s knees together for weeks (sometimes as long as six.) When—or if—it finally heals, the girl is left with only a tiny little hole, think the size of a pencil eraser, through which menstrual blood and urine are allowed to pass. That’s it. She’s completely flat and closed from where the clitoris used to be to her anus.

Yeah. Let that sink in for a second. Oh, and keep in mind these disgusting procedures are normally carried out on toddlers and young girls by crazy ass old hags without anesthesia, sterile fields or even basic hygiene. Also, they aren’t making these cuts with scalpels. Nope. We’re talking glass shards and knives, people. And those stitches? They’re not always done with thread. Sometimes it’s just long thorns plucked from the nearest bush.

No, I am not making this up. You can not make up this kind of horror. There are dozens of UNICEF, WHO, and medical journal studies describing in terrifying detail these back alley mutilations. And guess what? It gets worse once you’re married. How can that be, you ask? What could possibly be worse than having your vajayjay mutilated and then sewn back together?

Having it cut open by your husband on your wedding night so that he can enjoy the supposed pleasure that only a girl preserved in this manner can provide. Yes, that’s right. The husbands create a new incision so that they may have intercourse with their wives. If the girl gets pregnant, they have to widen the incision to allow for a vaginal delivery—but get this—they then SEW it back up, let it heal, and then the husband gets to slice it open yet again. You can see what a vicious cycle this is…

I first learned about Female Genital Mutilation during my freshman year of high school. I was shocked. I didn’t quite know what to think. My own sexual curiosity was just beginning to bloom, and I couldn’t imagine having the very essence of my womanhood, the outward symbol of my femininity, hacked to pieces to prevent impurity.

And before anyone starts bellowing about Islam—just hold on a sec. FGM predates Islam and Christianity. People who study this sort of thing think it started in the Nile Valley during the time of pharaohs. Apparently there are lady mummies with mutilated genitalia. The practice spread and has persisted because of cultural beliefs on cleanliness, virginity, and stature. If you’re interested in a long, but surprisingly well-researched article, check out this link.

Anyways…I never thought I would ever hear of another crime against women that could rival FGM. But then one morning I was scanning some Arabic newspapers online (trying to pick out the words I understood) and I discovered a tiny story on Du’a Khalil. Using Google, I searched for her name and that’s when I uncovered the most barbaric, unbelievably sadistic and inhumane cell phone video that has ever been captured.

Du’a Khalil Aswad was a 17 year old Yazidi girl who lived in Northern Iraq. (The Yazidi are mostly Kurds who follow an ancient pre-Islam religion. I’ve read a few articles on them, but there’s no way I could sum it up in a few sentences. Suffice to say that they believe they’re descended from Adam but not Eve, absolutely forbid intermarrying with other Kurds or people of different religions, and they don’t accept converts.) It seems that Du’a fell in love with a Sunni boy and may have converted to Islam to marry him. That detail hasn’t been thoroughly vetted, but it has been widely reported. She also seems to have been seen walking with this boy and may have spent the night away from her home, presumably with said boy.

What happened next is murky at best. Du’a fled for her life, but was either persuaded by a family member to return, understanding that all was forgiven or she may have been granted asylum and protection by a local sheikh. When she returned to the city, she was either jumped in the street or made it home and was then dragged into the street to meet her death. A crowd of men numbering in the thousands tore away her clothing until she was wearing only her undergarments and began to stone her.

Yes, STONE her. The stoning lasted more than thirty minutes. If you watch the video, she tries to sit up, she begs for mercy, but no one lifts a fucking finger. They yell and spit and throw huge chunks of concrete at her. Even more infuriating are the ARMED FUCKING POLICEMEN standing throughout and around the crowd doing absolutely nothing to help this poor girl. Eventually some guy steps forward and whacks her on the face with a huge piece of rock, killing her. But these worthless pieces of shit don’t stop there. Nope. They drag her body to the edge of town, set it on fire, and then bury her with a dead dog.

All because she fell in love with the wrong kid. Uh, hello! She was a teenager! That’s what teenagers do!

Where the fuck is the honor in killing a young girl? Or, for that matter, mutilating a baby’s genitalia? More importantly, why the hell do women sit around and take this crap? Domestic abuse, sexual assault, honor killings, genital mutilation, misogyny in media and pop culture, lack of basic female health care. And we can’t act like Third World Countries are the only place this stuff happens. Every 2.5 minutes in the US, a person is sexually assaulted. 1 in 6 women or 1 in 33 men will be sexually assaulted. Childbirth is the NUMBER ONE KILLER of women worldwide. 1 in 2500 US women will die from pregnancy complications. Compare that to 1 in 30,000 in Sweden. Hmm, I wonder which country has universal health care, appropriate sexual education, and widely available contraception to prevent high-risk teenage pregnancies?

So now that we’re all depressed, let’s turn that helplessness or apathy into something productive.

Buy a Du’a Khalil t-shirt.
Join Equality Now or NOW.
Volunteer with your local Rape Crisis or Domestic Abuse Shelter.
Educate Yourself!!

*Jumping off my soap box and crawling into bed*

Friday, August 10, 2007

For My Next Trick, The UHAUL Backflip!

So I know I said my next post would be about the wonders of Myspace, but that's been postponed for a few days. Read on. You'll see why.

On Wednesday, Dave and I were supposed to do the final packing and moving of our apartment. I reserved one of those huge UHAUL trucks, you know, the 26' one that's like four feet off the ground. We go to the apartment, start throwing crap into boxes and moving out the last of the furniture. We get everything but maybe a quarter of the apartment packed and stowed in the UHAUL before Dave has had enough and calls it quits. We head over to the house, pull up in front, and start using the dolley to ferry boxes from the back of the truck to the garage for sorting.

OK. So there wasn't really any "we" to the moving. It was really Dave doing all the hard work. Come on. I'm a supervisor. We all know that....

So Dave and I are in the back of the truck, trying to figure out which boxes we'll take in the house tonight and which ones can wait. I'm holding a chair in my hands, walking backwards as I talk, completely oblivious to the impending danger. Of course, Dave had already warned me that I was going to hurt myself, but did I listen? Uh, no. And why not do you ask? Well, duh, because I, like, know everything. Dave, on the other hand, is fully aware of what a walking nightmare I am. Seriously, I live Murphy's Law every day. I fall out of showers, trip down steps, cut myself in the kitchen, burn myself while cooking, rip off nails doing laundry or random cleaning--hell, I cracked my toenail in half moving a love seat!

Anywho--I'm walking backwards, holding one of our dining room chairs. Dave is facing the front of the truck, trying to find the stack of kitchen boxes. He turns around to tell me something, and just as an expression of sheer terror registers on his face, I feel imbalanced. Like an idiot, I panic and stiffen, and that's all it takes for me to go tumbling over the edge, lime green and pink kangaROOS futilely scraping against metal, chair still clutched to my chest. I have enough sense not to put my hands down to break my fall because I need my fingers to make a living. My fat ass bears the brunt of the fall, but oddly enough, it's not as padded as one might assume. My head whips back and CRACK! I'm out.

It's all blurry from that point on... Ever the gallant knight, Dave rushes down the ramp. I'm writhing in blinding pain, but refusing an ambulance. (I used to work in one and have a slight aversion to all things EMS.) Driving to the Med, sitting, waiting, talking to nurses and doctors, tests, thirst, drowsiness, grumpiness. It was super late before we got the all clear to head home. I had a headache, bruised pride, and a sore ass.

'Course, the sore ass may have been from the BEND OVER & TAKE IT treatment our insurance company gave us. I mean, seriously, what a crock of shit. Last year, Dave's company trotted out this "amazing" High Deductible Health Saving's plan, highlighting alll of the great features but conveniently forgetting to provide any real information. They were all, "Oh, you're insurance will continue to be free, but you'll have to pay $60/month for your spouse. If you stay on your current plan, you'll have to pay for both. Oh, and look! We're even seeding your health savings account!"

Except that they don't really. They made it seem like they would give the full $1500 (or whatever the amount was--I can't remember. foggy memory and all) at the same time, but they only provided a portion with the remainder deposited in $62 increments. WTF? So you have to pay for all of your health care until you meet your deductible which is fair enough. Dave's deductible was 1500, but now that we're married, it jumped to 3000 or 3500. That wouldn't be so bad, but oh, wait! The prescription coverage on this new plan (which, by the way, is NOTHING like what Dave was quoted prior to switching) fucking sucks. And that's putting it mildly. It's no secret that Dave's on all kinds of meds to control his diabetes, and uh, yeah, that crap ain't cheap. And let's not even begin to discuss how our insurance doesn't even cover a portion of any of the meds I will need to address premature ovarian failure and PCOS.


Anyways... Dave had to miss his Thursday shift. I felt really bad about that. He's the type of guy who, like, NEVER calls in sick and when he does, he feels guilty. Me? I'm normal, you know, the type of person who seizes every chance to call in sick and enjoys every minute like the last day on earth.

I feel fine now, a little achey and sort of mentally scattered, but whatever. It'll correct itself eventually--I hope. I've sort of got two novellas and a full length literay YA to finish by, oh, September 1st.

Oh, yeah! And for all my fellow recent brides and/or brides-to-be, have you gotten that scamming phone call from Simplicty Brides??? I've gotten four calls from them since 1 pm and it's only 5 o'clock now! WTF, right? I finally answered this last time. It's basically this lady who's all, "You've won a free trip!" But then she starts the spiel, and immediately, you're hit by that that oh-so-familiar scam scent that only a whiff of Vieux Boulogne can replicate. Mid-spiel, I told her not to call again and hung up. A quick Google search and I realized what a good move I made. This company is super pushy and particularly vile.

It's a company called Carico/Royal Prestige/Integra Marketing Group/Simplicty Gourmet/Simplicty Bride/World Adventures Travel/Pro Health Ultra who market their pots and pans and such to newly engaged and married couples. They get our info from bridal shows, websites, and shops. How it works is this:

1) Phone call. Invite to a cooking show at local hotel.
2) Attend cooking show. Listen to "your pans are killing you" speech Pressure to buy $1600-3500 worth of pans. Sign contract and receive travel voucher to 2.5 start hotel--if you're lucky.
3) Panic. Decide to cancel pan contract--but, oh no! There is no contact number!! 3 days pass and you're certifiably Shit Outta Luck.

You should read some of these horror stories!! Consumer News, Brides.Com Forum, Rip Off Report.

Isn't it sick how they try to rip off people who are getting married or just married? You should see this list of Bridal Scams! Free cruises, honeymoons, tuxes, shopping sprees--whatever. I never buy into that crap. I'm super lucky Mom raised me to be skeptical of too-good-to-be-true stuff.

OK. Enough blogging. Time to give Bos a bath b/c PEE-EWWW! He has reached a whole new level of stank today from playing outside. By the way, while trying to write this post, I fought with and removed from Bosley's mouth: a DVD remote, two handfuls of comforter stuffing, an empty Dr. Pepper can that he stole from the table, and my tiny black Sony Ericsson cell.

Monday, August 06, 2007

If I Wanted My Toes Licked, I'd Dip Them In Mayonnaise

Yeah. I have no frickin' idea what the title means either. On Wednesday, Dave and I were trying to nap but Bos was having none of it. He does this really annoying thing where he sticks his nose under the covers and starts licking/gnawing on whatever he finds--and I do mean whatever he finds. What can I say? My pup's a pervo. He's also started bitch-slapping us. No joke. If you're ignoring him, he'll take his massive paw and smack you straight across the face or tummy or thigh or whatever he's closest to. Can you say ouch?!?!

Anywho, Dave, in a nutso, super groggy state, whips out that perplexing one liner. We were both silent for about two seconds before busting out laughing as we tried figure out what the hell he meant to say.

Not long after that, Dave's phone started ringing and it was his youngest brother, Todd. Todd has just been honorably discharged from the USMC and is on a road trip from Camp LeJeune to Califas with his lovely wife, Stephanie, his mother-in-law Agnes, and sister-in-law Melissa. They were giving us a few hours of heads-up as they prepared to leave New Orleans for the first leg of their "Crossing Texas Tour."

I have to admit I was a tad less than thrilled by the prospect of four houseguests for 3 nights/3 days--especially since I had never met Stephanie, her mother, or sister--but I could not have been more wrong! From the moment they stepped through the front door, I could tell it was going to be a great visit. Stephanie is the kind of girl I would naturally gravitate towards: razor sharp wit, funny as hell, and totally honest; Melissa reminds me of my own little sis in that quiet, introspective, I-know-way-more-than-I-let-on-one-day-I'm-gonna-shock-you-way; Agnes is seriously a Hungarian carbon-copy of my own spunky mama--and she cooks amazingly well!

So from Wednesday night through Saturday late afternoon, we ate, laughed, ate, laughed, told stories, commiserated, and yeah, ate some more. Did I mention that this bunch were the kind of houseguests who are totally self-sufficient? I'm working against a deadline so I didn't have a lot of time to show them around town so they would just ask, "How do we get here?" I would write down directions and off they would go. And all faithful readers know what a shat sleep schedule I keep but my early afternoon wake-up times didn't even faze them. Oh, and Bos went bonkers for Melissa and Agnes.

When they left on Saturday, I was kind of sad. It was suddenly really quiet in the house. Weird almost. I think I'm going to start opening the house to guests more often. Just not when I'm under a deadline.

Speaking of deadlines, I should stop procrastinating and start writing. Tomorrow I think I'll post on the wonders of Myspace and discovering old friends. Maybe.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Unleashing My Inner Gracie

While skimming through my fave blogs this afternoon, I came across this gem from Mary Castillo's Chica Lit Blog. It's a tiny snippet of her mother giving a snarky coworker a verbal bitch slap and it got me thinking about my very own feisty Mama. If you've never had the pleasure of meeting her, it's hard to describe her. She's the quintessential Mama--unbelievably nurturing, fiercely protective, hilariously funny--but with a little extra kick. Let's just say that Mom isn't afraid of dropping a straight-up Muay Thai-esque verbal barrage on any offending person.

Growing up, I shared Mom's ribald sense of humor, intense loyalty to friends, and a love for volunteering, but I wasn't so big on the standing up for myself. That's not to say I was a total pushover, but I tended to pick my battles. Monumental injustices against friends and loved ones always received my full attention--complete with protests, letter writing campaigns, etc, but snarky comments by the "popular" kids just received a frown and a toss of the head.

However, the older I get the more of my mom I witness in my actions. The time I actually stopped and was like, OMG, I'm my mother was the now infamous Lane Bryant UPS incident where I chased the UPS driver through the parking lot, cornering him in the back of his truck while brandishing my fave chancla. Walking back to the apartment that day, I realized that I had just unleashed a smidgeon of my inner Gracie. In a way, it was liberating--OK, well, terrifying, too--but liberating all the same.

Last week, I had another Gracie moment. When we closed on the house, we were told that they would finish sodding the back half of the yard as the same time as all those houses surrounding us. OK. No big deal. Free grass, not going to complain.

So the day Sara gets back from K-stan, she calls to see if she can come over to get her mail, Margie and Val (her plants), and catch up on the good gossip. As I'm waiting for her to arrive, I happen to glance out the front windows and notice that there are a bunch of men standing near my trees. Interest piqued, I survey the lawn and realize that there are dozens of pallets of soaking wet grass in our driveway. (The driveway is difficult to see from the front of the house because of the angle of the windows/garage.) Oh, and not only do I have the entire delivery of grass for the entire subdivision on my driveway, but the guys laying the grass are pushing wheelbarrows through MY yard, creating ugly ass troughs because the ground was still incredibly soft from a week's deluge.

Can you say pissed???

I head outside, barefoot of course, and ask them what the hell they're doing. I get the usual run-around until the superintendent of the subdivision deigns to grace me with his presence. He gives me this long spiel about the grass delivery driver putting the grass in the wrong place. When I ask him why they aren't sodding our yard (since the grass is in our driveway) but rather the unsold house next door, he gives me this BS line about the ground being too wet to put the grass down in every yard, blah, blah, blah. (Mind you, the yard next door, the unsold house, is literally moat, but ours is completely drained.)

I remind Jeremy that this is our home, we pay a mortgage and association fees for the privilege of using our driveway. I tell him that not only do I expect company any minute, but that Dave is coming home from a 72 hour shift in, like, six hours, and he is going to be irate if he sees this. I also point to the troughs in my front yard, asking what he intends to do about that, and he explains that it's really not his problem.


By this point, my blood is boiling. I'm like the Bruce Banner, but instead of a giantic green Hulk taking over my body, it's a short spitfire named Grace. Using my nicest, but most intimidating voice, I tell him that I want the pallets out of my driveway, the wheelbarrows off my grass, and the mess cleared up immediately. A quick pivot and I'm heading back into the house. With my back turned, Jeremy says in this incredibly patronizing voice, "I'll try."

Me: I didn't ask you try. I want it done. Now.

Needless to say, by the time Sara arrived--and parked like half a mile away--the crews were clearing away the pallets of grass, broken pallet shards, and chunks of grass and dirt from our driveway. By the time Dave got home, it was just a bad memory.

So anywho--the point of this random tale is that everything that is the best in my mother is the best of me. I would assume that if I looked really hard I would find that Dad's best traits are the best in me as well. Ten years ago, I would have freaked at the thought of evolving into some kind of amalgam of my parents, but now, I don't know, it feels good. It feels right--natural, maybe?

And maybe someday, if I ever get the chance to be a Mama (through adoption most likely), I want to be that short, chubby woman who strikes fear in the hearts of mere mortals...

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Ash's Wedding!

OMG! Ash & Ryan's wedding was beautiful! The House Plantation was picturesque, I mean, striaght out of Gone With the Wind pretty. As for The Dress, it was this Cinderella number with a delicately embroidered bodice and gathered silk skirt. When Ash walked down the porch steps, I was shocked! Ash is like me. We rarely get all gussied up so I think we must have both decided to go all-out on our wedding days, lol. I hate to sound goofy, but she was a vision of radiance--the smile, the hair, the dress--she had it all. Ryan and his entourage didn't look half bad, either, in their dress blues. Gotta love the tasty military boys! Oh, and Sara was gorgeous in her claret bridesmaid dress. Seriously, a certifiable hottie. During dinner, Dave and I had the pleasure of meeting a really nice couple from The Valley (Texas Valley, not the other one.) He was Ash's SFC and he entertained us with tales of Ash's exploits while deployed to Afghanistan.

My only regret is that Dave and I had to leave early, after the cake cutting and dances, because we couldn't find a pet sitter for Bos. Originally we had planned to board him at our vet's pet resort, but they have strict vaccination protocols that basically say they won't accept the validity of his prior vaccines because they were given by his foster mommy. It's not like she bought the vaccines herself over the internet, though. She picked them up from the vet who coordinates medical care for their PAWS Rescue group and administered them according to his protocol. But our vet, who is, like, the best vet in town, won't allow Bos to board unless he repeats his vaccines. I know what you're thinking. Just give him the damn shots again, right?

Well, uh, hell no. There are so many new studies and published literature available that details the problems with over-vaccinating dogs. Plus I figure Bos has had a rough enough start to life. I'm not about to put him through the trauma of multiple vaccinations right before I drop him off. He might think I've abandoned him, and more importantly, Great Danes tend to develop life-threatening bloat during extreme stress.

That said, it was a risk Dave and I weren't willing to take. We tried to go the pet sitter route, but all of our friends were going to the wedding or out of town. The professional pet sitters won't come out to the new house because it's in the boondocks. So we ended up doggy proofing the house, buying him some new toys, and leaving him on his own. Hard to believe, but he didn't tear anything up. From what I can tell, he played, ate, played some more, took a piss on the second landing, and then played some more. All in all, not a bad evening for him, lol.

Anywho. I've got to get back to work. We're expecting four houseguests this week, and our house is still a wreck. I've got a two week menu to write and a shopping list to figure out. We've still got to finish moving, and oh yeah, I really, really need to get another chapter tapped out.

I'm off!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Sausage Fest

So after weeks, WEEKS, of waiting, Verizon finally flipped the switch to give me DSL! OMG! I cannot begin to explain how unbelievably frustrating it is not to have internet--especially when the bulk of my daily business (communicating with agent, etc) is done via email. I had to drive seven miles across town to get to the apartment (which is still under lease) to use my cable modem to check my email, send files, etc. So effing annoying.

You know what else is annoying? Verizon. When the house was built, we were told that we would have phone/DSL service through Verizon. There is a green Verizon phone pylon thing in the left corner of our backyard. Yet when I contacted Verizon to order service I was told, "We're sorry, Mrs. O, but you're not eligible for Verizon service."

Hmmm. Curious.

I proceed to explain to the customer service rep that I'm literally standing ten feet from the Verizon box. I'm now touching the Verizon box. If I'm not eligible for service, then what the fuck is this hideous thing taking up the corner that was supposed to be dedicated to my antique roses?!?!

I went through four service reps, climbing the bs hierarchy with each person until I was told, and I quote, "Mrs. O, I don't know what you expect me to do. I can't waste any more time on this." Click.

When Dave walked in from his eye doctor appointment, I was seething. We ended up contacting our local Verizon service center, and the GM there was able to work it out. We order our service and guess what? It takes them 3 weeks--3 weeks!--to turn it on! The guy didn't even properly install the DSL wire that runs from the box to the house. Yeah. We totally have 100 feet of curling almond colored wire winding along the bottom of the fence from to the house. WTF? And guess who thinks it's his new toy? Yeah. Problem.

Oh, and remember those dishes that my cuz and hubby bought us as a wedding gift? Well after convincing the local BB&B staff that we weren't pulling a fast con of some kind, they ordered an exchange to replace the random household item with the dishes. One week later, Dave and I come home after buying groceries to find a huge box on the front step. I am ecstatic! I drag the box inside, put it next to the dining room table, and then head back into the kitchen to put up groceries and organize the new pantry. I completely forget about the dishes until the next morning when I open the package and--and--OMFG!

It's the right dishes, wrong color. WTF?? I mean, Sweet Jay-sus!

After hexing the shipping clerks at BB&B, I finally decided that the rust colored dishes are just as pretty, if not prettier, than the blue. More importantly, the rust complements the table linens we chose. So that's that. I'm done.

On the Bosley front, well, you don't know gross until you've seen a Great Dane puppy sling 1/2 cup of green snot onto your wall/leg/carpet/couch/cabinets with every gigantor sneeze. Apparently dogs develop URIs (upper respiratory infections) during stressful times, like, you know, changing homes. If cleaning up the snot isn't bad enough, we also have to convince him to take his antibiotics. Cripes is that a rough one! He'll eat the pill if i stick it in cheese, but every now and then, he'll manage to separate the pill from the cheese. I'll find green slobber (from the gel capsule) all over the floor, the wall, and the carpet as he tries to wipe the bitter taste off of his tongue.

Yesterday afternoon, I gave him his pill and ran upstairs to brush my teeth. When I came back down, he was resting next to the bottom step and glanced up at me. I swear, he looked like a coke fiend a-la Tony Montana at the end of Scarface. Seriously, his nose and mouth were covered in white dust. Of course, I'm terrified, thinking, "Oh, crap! What did he eat? What is white and dusty? Dave's crack?"


Turns out he had cracked a pill, spilled the contents on the kitchen floor, and proceeded to lick it up. Bizarre.

His bizarro behavior keeps me constantly amused. For instance, I found out two nights ago that he likes Vienna sausages. One of my late night writing guilty pleasures is a can of Vienna Sausages. I have this weird thing about rinsing them and dumping them in a glass bowl (has to be clear glass) before I can eat them--and I can only drink a cold Dr. Pepper with them. I know. I'm strange, but whatev. So anywho, I've had a few when I decide to make a run to the little girls' room. When I come back into the dining room, Bos is using my writing chair for balance as he makes a midnight snack of MY midnight snack. Bastard!

Yesterday afternoon, I also found out that his mortal enemy is tuna fish. I was making a sandwich, had a little left in the can, and thought, I'll just dump this onto his dry food, give him a change of pace. He gives it one sniff and freaks the fuck out! Barking, jumping, growling, the works. I try to get to the bowl to get rid of the obviously offending material, but he won't let me get close to his raised stand. Eventually I manage to coax him away with a snausage and dump the bowl into the trash.

Here's the thing, though. Ten minutes later, I get up from the dining table for a refill of iced tea and guess what I find upon my return? You guessed it. Bosley eating my tuna fish sandwich. I'm like, "Are you serious?!?! Ten minutes ago you're trying to rip its throat out, and now it's tasty? You're a nutter, Bos."


On the writing front, I'm chipping away at KoCS and D2L. Plan is to finish the RD of KoCS by August 15 and editing by September 5. D2L will be on the back burner until after KoCS b/c I'm already behind on submitting it to Irene. Oopsy! Real life has a knack of throwing wrenches into my plans....

As for the moving, we're half done, but with the rain every day, it's been difficult. I think we're going to take the hit, rent a Uhaul and move the bulk of the crap on one day. Yuk.

OK. So back to work. I'm not going to get any writing done tomorrow b/c we're heading out of town for Ash's wedding!!! Yay!!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Bringin' Home Baby

We were finally able to get our truck fixed on Saturday morning, and let’s just say that we were slightly chinga’led. First off, Dad gave us an estimate for parts and labor. Being that he works in the mechanical field (as a supervisor for a major global oil and gas servicing company) he knows his stuff. Dave goes over to get the estimate and give them the go ahead to start working and guess what? It’s almost double what Dad said the high-end should be. Now, Dave’s not one to negotiate or argue so he just signed on the dotted line. Sigh.

Anywho. They started work on the truck around 0815, but it was 1330 before they finished which meant that I missed my friend’s bridal shower. AARRGGH! On the bright side, though, I was able to drive down to Webster to get Bosley. The drive down was long and boring. Finding the PetSmart was a little bit of a challenge, considering Saturday afternoon mall traffic, but eventually we found the place.

The store was packed with crates of shelter pets desperate for new homes and owners. Dave is uber-sensitive when it comes to abandoned anything so he skirted the crates of puppies and dogs and kittens and cats for the fish aisle while I tracked down Bosley’s foster mommy. She is this really sweet, generous, kindhearted woman who regularly opens her home to rescue dogs. She was very helpful, gave us a lot of paperwork to fill out and sign, and then talked us through the rehoming process. We also got Bos’ shot records and the details of his latest visit where he was snipped. Oh, and he weighs 44.2 pounds so he’s a tad on the thin side for a 4 month old puppy.

Bosley and his sister, Sabrina, were the only two left in their shared crate. He was obviously nervous and stressed about the entire situation. He’d already watched his other two sisters be adopted that day and was surrounded by dozens of barking, yipping, agitated dogs. The second he stepped out of his cage, he peed, but once we calmed him down, he let us slip a new collar and leash around his neck. He even followed me right out of the store, but when we got to the truck, he plopped down on the concrete and refused to move. Dave lifted him up, and yep, he peed again, lol. We placed him on some towels on the floorboard, between my knees, and then started the drive home. He was sort of weepy and whiney, but all seemed to be going well until we were maybe three stoplights down from the PetSmart and yeah. He totally yakked right on my lap. And let me tell you something, you have not seen vomit until a Great Dane puppy unloads his lunch on you. Sweet Jay-sus! At least it was thick and didn’t run everywhere.

I put a towel over it until we reached a gas station and then Dave cleaned up the mess while I tried to soothe Bos’ nerves. We bought some gas and then back on the highway we went. After a few minutes, Bos settled onto the carpet and went to sleep. When we pulled into the driveway of the house, he refused to get out the truck so Dave had to lift him out again. He followed me into the backyard, but totally freaked out when I opened the gate. I think it may have been the squeaking hinges. Anyways, he took care of his business in the backyard and then followed me inside the house. We fed him, gave him some water, and then walked him around the first floor of the house. He flopped down at the foot of the stairs and we sat down with him, petting him and talking to him. We let him out for another round of poo and pee before bringing him back inside and showing him his new toys. He went to town on his rope and this lime green knobby rubber barbell thing. He played and followed us around the rest of the evening.

When it was bedtime, we blocked him into his corner of the kitchen/breakfast area, and less than a minute later, he was whining and yipping. We tried to ignore it, hoping he would settle down, but not so much. I went downstairs, sat down with him, and waited until he had fallen asleep before sneaking out of the kitchen and back upstairs.

So far he’s fitting in really well. He’s had a few accidents on the new carpet (cringe!) but we’ve caught him in the act every time so it’s been easy to clean up. His accidents yesterday occurred during a thunderstorm and when we came back to the house after running some errands and picking up some more boxes from the apartment. He had a barking fit last night when he caught his reflection in the sidelight of the front door, and oh my god, you should have seen him climbing up on the airbed! First of all, Great Dane puppies are not exactly the most lithe and graceful of babies, lol. He’s kind of goofy looking when he tries to run or climb or jump so just watching him get up on the airbed was hilarious, but then he tried to stretch, and I guess he didn’t realize how close to the edge he was, and he slid right off. It was only a six inch drop to the carpet, but he was terrified.

Oh, and he also learned how to climb stairs last night. Dave got a big ole lick on the face this morning when Bos wandered into the bedroom. LMFAO!

Friday, June 29, 2007


Funny story ahead--except for the funny part. So it's been a hectic few days with trying to write and pack. Dave spent the morning running an obstacle course at work (his annual physical agility test) and then waited for our fridge to be delivered by Lowes. Don't you just love it when they say we'll be there between 10 and 2. Right....

Dave finally made it home around 2:30. We had lunch then headed over to PetSmart to pick up the last of the puppy items we need: food, bowls, potty pads, bags, shampoo, etc. We toss everything in the truck and then head over to Wal-Mart for some random stuff like paper towels and things. As we're pausing at a stop sign in the parking lot, we suddenly hear a cacophony of crashing, and the driver's side front end drops down to the concrete. We can't move. We have little steering. We're generally fucked.

Dave is able to drive it a few feet out of traffic and into the overflow garden section of Wal-Mart. He gets out, pops the hood, and takes a peek. Yeah. Not good. The ball joint has snapped off of the left arm. Fuck Beans!

We call a tow truck driver and wait. And wait. And wait. We were basically a bizarre piece of white trash installation art. We should have charged for the privilege of slowing down to gawk.
Tow truck driver gets there and--well--let's just say he was a couple tacos short of a combo. Real nutter. He pulls the truck onto the flatbed. We climb into the cab and drive over to Aggieland Automotive, drop off the truck, fill out a key drop envelope, and head back to the apartment.

This couldn't have happened at a worse time. We're supposed to be moving this weekend. Dave is supposed to work tomorrow. I have a bridal shower and a puppy adoption. I mean, seriously! Jay-sus in a sidecar! Just a break, one little break is all I want.

Anywho. I'm done venting. Going to make dinner now.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Hey, guess what is really, really, really annoying at 3 am??? Changing your blog template without first copying your customized html code!

Took me an hour and a half to write in all the new code for my sidebars, and they still look crappy. But whatev! I'm so done with it. At least the new color scheme is easier on the eyes.....

Oh, and if you haven't ever heard them, check out my fave new band--and yeah, I realize that I have a new favorite band, like, every week, but tough. deal with it--Explosions in the Sky. They're an Austin based band so you know I'm going to support my fellow Texans!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

This Hairy Eyeball Is Reserved for BB&B

After filling out multiple forms and proving my identity, the apartment office staff finally gave me the UPS package that had been dropped off yesterday. This struck me as slightly odd. Seriously, folks, it was easier to get a marriage license than to pick up my package. And yes I get that the apartment complex has to protect itself from theft allegations, etc, but still.

You know, this calls to mind the hypocrisy and absolute futility of Homeland Security. A few weeks ago, a close friend of mine sent her passport out for a visa stamp prior her upcoming trip to Eurasia. She waited patiently for the return of her passport from FedEx, fully aware that she would have to sign for this security sensitive package. Like most people with an attached garage, she almost always uses the side entrance to her house so it was quite a disturbing surprise when she stepped out of her front door one afternoon only to find a soggy FedEx envelope on the doorstep. That's right. They left her passport on a doorstep. She's an upstanding citizen with few dissident beliefs, but can you imagine how easy it would be for someone with evil intentions to forge an application and/or steal a passport? Jeez!

So anywho. The apartment office girl goes into the back and brings out this massive battered box. When I say battered, I mean side caved in, top depressed, tape ripped and carboard slightly soggy. Wow! I'm glad it didn't contain, you know, something fragile or anything! So I trudge home, plop the box onto the couch, and rip into it with gleeful, Christmas morning delight--and guess what?

It's the wrong fucking gift! As in the bill of shipping doesn't match the item inside the box that is clearly maked with 2, TWO, independent inspections by BB&B shipping staff.

My cousin and her husband bought Dave and I a gorgeous set of dishes. I mean, super pretty. She was so excited about them--but what do I get? Well. Not dishes. Something really hideous that I won't describe b/c I really don't want to offend any readers who may have this specific item in their home.

So I call Bed, Bath & Beyond and the guy assures me that I did, in fact, receive a set of dishes. His computer screen tells him so. Hmmm. Curious, very curious. Perhaps my dishes are part of some first wave Earth invasion of tableware that are infected with nanobots that enable them to reorganize themselves into tacky, kitschy household items?

Needless to say he didn't quite appreciate my witty sense of humor but after ten minutes of back and forth banter, he explained that I could simply take the package back to my local BB&B for an expedited exchange. Gee! Thanks!

Anywho. BB&B is officially on my Hairy Eyeball short list now, right behind my archnemesis, Mr. UPS...


So obviously I should be doing something productive, you know, like working through the crap chapter I'm stuck in, but I'm finding it rather hard. And yes, it is almost 0300. Normal people are asleep, but I'm sitting here wasting time not working.

Procrastination is probably my worst trait. Well. It's a close tie with my love for gossip. I ♥ chisme! But I think that's a cultural thing. Or a female thing. Or maybe a combination of both? Who the hell knows....

So what have I been doing rather than writing? Comparing dog foods (you would not believe some of the crap that goes into dog food. seriously. they put dogs and cats in dog food. it's called bone meal. ick!), reading up on neuter surgery after-care and housetraining a puppy, reading reviews of my friends' latest books (i suspect that a lot of snarky reviews are written by struggling writers unable to snag an agent or place a manuscript with an editor,) making new friends on Myspace, working on a genealogy chart for a character in my next book, comparing washer/dryer prices, putting together Dave's homemade carb-conscious meals for the next 3 days, and planning our moving schedule. Oh, and I've got Season 3 of the Golden Girls blaring in the background on my laptop. I ♥ the Golden Girls!

Anywho. I think I'm going to try to get a few pages written. I won't be able to sleep if I don't. I'm going to need my sleep for tomorrow. I may have to engage in mortal combat with the UPS man if he broke our new dishes (a wedding gift from Suzie & Freddie.) That rat bastard in brown shorts has dropped/misplaced his last package addressed to me.

I have never in my life had such a difficult problem with a delivery man. He's still delivering packages (most of them dropped and beaten up) to the apartment office without leaving a notice on our door. Hell he didn't even have the decency to make sure that boxes clearly marked perishable were delivered by the office staff the day following his attempted "delivery." You would have thought that after the Lane Bryant Dress Debacle and my chasing him into the back of his truck (in my PJs, barefoot and brandishing a chancla) that he would have gotten his act together, but nope.

Looks like I'm going to have pull out the Big Guns this time and corner him with one of Dave's workboots...