Monday, December 19, 2005


I'll be taking the tour of MT for the next week or so. With intermittent time spent off the grid. No phone service for our cells even. Kinda nice. Kinda scary. Always an adventure. So not much for posting during that time, if at all.

In the meantime, here are random thoughts- the kinds of things that I am thinking in the middle of the night, when I wake up. And yes, I have real problems sleeping when I'm drunk. So the other night was full of bleary ideas. They have to go somewhere, no?

When you sell something on Ebay, ship the fucking thing. Don't do something mysterious with it and then claim that it was lost in the mail, here's a refund. I don't want my fucking money back. I want the item. It was a Chrismas present you assmunch. Fuck you very much.

I had a friend in High School who this pertains to- her personal history still haunts me- I wish I had known about it at the time, and had the wherewithal to do something to protect her- Hey Mom of the friend- how about you protect your daughter from the monsters in your fucking house, rather than your stupid, scary porcelain dolls? What do you think your bloody job is, anyway? You're her MOM- you are supposed to keep her safe. And if she's not safe from your creepy sons and horrible husband, you are supposed to get her to someplace safe. Not take their side and call her a liar. You are just lucky I didn't hear about it when I was still in High School. I would've probably told my parents, and you would've lost all of your kids. You bitch.

Sound like I'm a little angry today? Well, maybe. It just seeps out around the edges in the middle of the night, and I felt like venting a bit. That's all. Otherwise, everything is just fine. FINE, I tell you!!! Seriously, all is well. I'll be getting back to the list of things to do before we leave town now. Give all of you I know and love a hug! Have a shiny, happy Christmas (if you believe in such things)!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Rudolph et al

Rudolph's little girlfriend was named Clarice. I looked it up on IMDB once I sobered up and remembered.

The whole thing was directed by a Japanese guy. This makes sense- that movie has some Godzilla-like elements- check out the Abominable Snowman some time. Silly Japanese. Making Snowmen all scary and such. Like making Komodo dragons into movie stars. Silly. Funny joke men.

Yeah- I'm feeling a tad peckish at the moment. My teeth hurt. My head doesn't hurt all that much, but my tummy is rebellious. Gotta go and try and become human. Probably shouldn't have had that last hard cider. Or two. Silly me. Trying to make myself all drunk and such. Funny joke lady.

Friday, December 16, 2005

It's the most wonderful time of the year

You got your celebs shutting down toy stores in NYC to play, you got your santas at the grocery store getting cash for the downtrodden, and you got your Tennessee Williams film fest on TCM. Yeah, nothing says family holiday quite like that dissipated old cynic. Astute student of human nature, sure. But quite a jaundiced view it is. And yes, I am watching them all. Identifying with elements, despite my Northwestern roots, and trying not to let him get me all down n such.

Seems that Kenga was a Williams fan from back in the day. Along with Capote. I don't know if he tried on Faulkner for size too, but I do know that he didn't get into the chicks (O'Connor, Carson, etc.). I can see him. Earnest young man, intent on intellectual folly, in his threadbare green courdoroy jacket, stone in pocket for striking matches, smokes in other pocket, drink in hand, belly up to the bar, Charlie B's on a Tuesday night...astute student of human nature himself. But didn't write it down. Bummer- I would love to read his thoughts back then.

Last night I had on Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, while Kenga was working on the computer. It's the one he dislikes the most. The family dynamics really piss him off. Funny- here's where I can identify with the movie- we had that extended family going on- unlike him. And though I hope that we weren't as ill-bred and obnoxious as the no-neck children, I'm pretty sure that there were plenty of undercurrents between the adults. I think there always are in large families. Rivalry, thy name is siblings. I have no idea how to avoid that- unless you breed only solo children. Then there's another can o worms to deal with. Then there's the spouses brought into the mix, and expected to get along. This is the interesting part. How does the mix work? Will the ladies cut eachother to shreds? Or will they be nice? It probably has a lot to do with middle-class aspirations and little to do with their time if they pull the former out of their handbags. Give them a good calving season and some branding, or a cattle drive, or some kind of harvest, and they'll no doubt get along- at least for the duration of time spent in the kitchen preparing food for the menfolk.

Anachronism. I know it. Most of the ranch girls I knew in school were just as likely to be involved in the physical reality of ranch life as their brothers. These girls wouldn't be in the bloody kitchen working on muffins while Dad and company bucked the bales. These girls were in the thick of it. That's why I really do wonder about the more traditional communities- like the Hutterites and the Amish. How do the women stand it? Is it because they're ignorant of the outside, and their reality is the only one they know? What if you really suck at the women't arts, and are really good at welding and mechanics? Will your Hutterite daddy let you work on the truck? Or will he hang his head in shame, and make you go back to the kitchen and fail at pie crust again?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Mine eyes have seen the glory

Or not. Actually I feel the need to post because of popular demand. ok- I'll admit it, my sister wants me to post.

Friday of last week I scratched my cornea on a plant. Ah, sweet irony, why do you taunt me so? It was a lovely phalaenopsis spike, loaded with buds. About dropped me. Knocked a tiny chunck of my cornea out. Damn. Since Kenga was on the road, I whined around the house, not sleeping, moaning and bitching. Then he came home. Things hadn't improved. We had a full-on investigation of Seattle's emergency care system.

We filed into the U of W urgent care clinic, adroitly avoiding the homeless people, and waited. It wasn't as long as I thought it would be- about 90 minutes. Then the good Dr. saw me, put crap in my eye, looked at it under ultraviolet, said, "yup, there's a scratch there" and flushed it with saline. He gave me a perscription for antibiotic eye crap and sent me on my way. Said that asperin would take care of the pain. Bullshit I say. Oxycontin. Stat. But no.

So I got home, lubed up the eye and took one of my "only in emergencies" migraine pills. And slept for the next 17 hours straight. Woke up grumpy, and hungover. Felt like the bears must in the spring.

Went to bed early Sunday night. Slept in on Monday- still felt hungover. I had forgotten why the pills are for emergencies only. Because they not only take care of the pain, but knock me on my ass for a couple of days. I am so sensitive. Like a little flower. That hits you in the eye and scratches your bleeding cornea.

So now I'm fine. Eye feels better. Sleeping like a normal person again. But since my life was on hold for several days, not much happened to report on blog. Thus the silence. Which wasn't golden, just sleepy.

Friday, December 09, 2005

What's the buzz

Kenga returns at 1:00 AM tomorrow. He's been in Viva Las Vegas for the last several days. Business trip. Then he was supposed to go see a rally race. I don't care for the rally races. He met up with his racing buddy Gern. They were supposed to return on Sunday. Seems that the racing organization didn't post on their website that Sunday's stages were the only ones open to the public. So the boys said, "fuck it." and left. Now they're cooling their heels in Vegas. Scary thought that. I said that they should visit the Liberace museum. They nixed that idea right out.

In the meantime, the bloody cats have been driving me to distraction. I had to sleep in the spare room last night, because Buddy keeps running around and throwing things on the floor. He has been upset since Kenga left. It's hard not to kill him. So I slept in, and feel better for it. Right now he's in my lap, rooting around for his nipple. Go for the nipple, kiddo. Go for the nipple.

I watched a couple of noteworthy movies last night, Warlock, with Henry Fonda (I wish I could like him more, but like Bing Crosby, he was a jerk in real life to his family, so I can't.), and then Moonfleet, a quasi-pirate movie directed by Fritz Lang. That one was lovely. Then I settled down with Hemingway. I'm trying A Farewell to Arms for the second time. First time it didn't take. This time, it's much better. Gotta thank AMP for that recommendation. It helps immensely that I've watched about a half a dozen movies about WWI in the meantime, too.

Now I have to run. I have things to do before Kenga returns, and since I had originally planned them out to spread over 2 more days, I gotta get them done more quickly. No need to budget.

Thursday, December 08, 2005


When I was little (many of my stories start like this), I was taken on many roadtrips around the state of MT. It just happened like that. I think that my parents and grandparents used this as a diversion- not as boring as spending Saturday afternoon watching curling and drinking beer.

I really didn't enjoy them much. Time is so funny to kids- especially in the car where you can't move around and spend energy. I hated the process of getting there. And all small roads in MT in certain parts of the state look the same. Trees. Sunlight laughing through the trees. Rocks. I often wondered what was looking at our car pass by from the trees. I had read lots of books about fairies, Greek mythology, and the like, and wanted them to be true. But MT isn't really the place to transplant those stories. They fit locales with more gentleness of character.

The one destination that I hated above all others (most were fine once we arrived, and I could run around and make noise) was the Big Hole. We went there on some kind of annual pilgrimage with my grandparents. I really, really hated the place. It has bad hoodoo in my book. I swore after one interminable road trip in my pre-teen years never to return. It's where the Nez Pierce were ambushed and killed in their sleep. I was probably exposed to Little Big Man at too early an age to handle these kinds of stories with aplomb. I hated the thought of all that screaming, dying and blood. And then the silence. I hated that there was a visitor's center with a slide show about the history, and exhibits featuring bullets. I just plain hated the place period. I had wanted to be an Indian princess when I was 5. I insisted on wearing my hair in braids and jumping on the bed in some kind of approximation of what I thought an Indian princess would do. I always thought that the cowboys and army men were poor sports, and just plain mean. Guess I was a child of the 70's after all.

And no, I won't go to the Big Hole ever again. Some memories need to fade out.

The Russian

Class was in the history seminar room. Smallish size, so it wasn't going to be normal. When she walked in I was taken aback.

First, she was large. Not fat- huge. Like superhuman. Over 6 feet tall, wearing 3" heels. She had enormous, lively and remarkably, ludicrously messy blondish hair. She constantly was flipping it off of her face with manicured and shellacked hands. She always wore dresses, even when it was 30 below. And an enormous, somewhat ratty fur coat that resembled a bear, but was likely mink.

She spoke with exhuberance and grandeur. Her features were slavic and very exotic. I was terrified of her. She could've beat the hell out of me. Both in a fight, and drinking.

She told the story of what had happened to her that very day. She had had her purse snatched from her. The thief had jumped in a car down the street and drove off. She had chased him for a couple of blocks. In heels. Betcha it put the fear of God in him- I would've peed myself if she was chasing me. Scary, scary lady.

I didn't do as well that year in class- had a better year the last one with the old Irishman. He was easier to read, and I thought a more effective teacher. But she was dramatic, eclectic, and certainly something new for Missoula.

Yesterday's heroes

The name for yesterday was Gregory Peck. I gotta say, if he wasn't dead, I would marry him. Well, if he was younger. And alive.

Watched The Man in the Grey Flannel Suit, where he made adultery look honorable. Then The Yellow Sky, where he was an outlaw, but not a murderer.

Also on the play list, and highly recommended was The Red Shoes, and Out of the Past, with Robert Michum- who has the kind of craggy elegance of Peck, but not the decency.

That's the movie report for today.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Response to friends

Blogger is being a pain in my ass right now. The word verification seems to be broken. So I will respond here.

In regards to my posts from yesterday:

Not to worry, ladies, twas a relatively momentary detour into a kinda dark place. But I do have to venture into those places from time to time. Just trying to shine a little light in there, n all.

Good luck on finals, Andrea!

You're ON for Narnia, Allison!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Songs- continued

From a song- I wish these were my words, but they're where I'm at right now-

I know that we don’t talk
I'm sick of it all
Can you hear me when I sing
You’re the reason I sing
You’re the reason why the opera is in me
Well, hey now
Still got to let you know
A house doesn’t make a home
Don’t leave me here alone


I was watching the Freeview Direct TV U2 concert this morning. Yeah, I know- we went to it already. But it was good to take a refresher. It made me think about a lot of things. The power of words and music for one. It was funny- that was one of a very few concerts that I have attended where my attention didn't wander off somewhere during the proceedings. I never looked at my watch. The others include Tony Bennett, Sigur Ros and a couple of old Blues guys.

The meaning of all this- just that I was thinking about it, and felt like indulging myself and putting up a somewhat meaningless post. Now I gotta go do some stuff. I'm thinking too many deep thoughts for my own good and comfort.


I thought that if I was like you, you would love me more. I tried my best. But it backfired, you see. I am guessing that when you look at me, you see yourself looking back. That can't be comfortable.

So I'm left with me and you inside my skin. I'm told that it's terminal. I'm never going to escape being some percentage you. It's too ingrained. So it's the balance I'm after. I've been working on it for years. Balance, balance, balance. Striking a compromise between black and white and red all over. Finding myself and my own voice inside the mirror that you see. Finding the courage to be part you and wholly me. To look at myself in the mirror, even when I'm mad at you, and know that it's ok. That I can love you and be angry and feel hurt, and carry you inside me and it'll all be ok. That I can be angry at myself, and get over it too.

In the time that we have left, and I hope ardently that it's lots and lots of time, mind you, I hope that we can grow to know eachother better. And that you'll see beyond the mirror image of yourself in me and see the original and unique me parts and it'll be good. And I'll try my best to be brave enough and strong enough to let you see those parts. No more hiding behind masks and mirrors. That's kid stuff.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Stickin it to the man

Friday I had another interview. It went well. Ramping up to it was, shall we say, interesting, though.

I drove. Didn't take the bus- I generally try not to when it's an interview- I want to control all aspects that I can. I gave myself 30 minutes to find parking. Thought this was good. And it was. I found a place, and was preparing to parallel park. Had my blinkers on, and was in reverse. Then a female she-devil tried to poach my spot. She pulled right in behind me, put her blinkers on, and proceeded to honk at me. I kept pulling backwards, threatening her front end. I figured, she has an expensive red car, looks like a rich doctor's wife, and I drive a piece of shit Grand Am that could survive some red paint and another dent or two. Cars were piling up behind her, getting impatient, but I wasn't gonna blink. I kept it in reverse. Then she started easing forward. Brinksmanship, indeed. I'm sure she had some very important shopping to do, and I was getting in her way.

Fuck this, I thought. I put the car in park and started to get out. She got an alarmed look on her face and drove off. Heh, heh, heh. Then I took the spot. I was triumphant. Blond bitch in the expensive car. Stickin it to you, sweetheart!!! Funny thing, I heard later from someone that this is kinda common. But usually people do blink. Pretty sad state of affairs, ifn you ask me.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

No brainer of the day

I was just reading that Disney is selectively targeting Christian groups when promoting the new Narnia movie. Well. Shiver me timbers- that's alarming! Really, I'm surprised that this is news. No I'm not- the news industry is bankrupt of ideas, so my cat crapping on the living room floor rather than in the box would probably make CNN if I worded the press release properly.

But I hope that no one who has read the book and is over the age of 8 is surprised by the subtext. I figured that one out when I was in 3rd grade. And I'm no bloody protegy- just was a relatively smart kid. I still plan on seeing the movie- I really have no problem with old C.S.- he seemed like a good enough egg. I had a friend (had being the operating word) who was a bigot. She refused to buy shoes from Sierra Trading Post because it's a faith oriented organization. But, I protested, they have really, really good shoes! For cheap! But she was determined to punish them for having Bible quotes on their catalogs. This really pissed me off. I saw it as just as bad as refusing to do business with a store run by someone Jewish. Or by a Muslim. I tried to explain that I thought that they had a right to their beliefs, and just because they chose to include those quotes in their own literature, they weren't adverse to taking our money or selling really, really good shoes for cheap. She was a bitch. That's about where I'll leave it for now.

But let the headline for today be- news flash, English Christian theologian, C.S. Lewis wrote a series of books with Christian overtones. The movie developed from this series also includes Christian overtones. You are hereby warned. Funny though, the advertising I've seen on the tv has emphasized the fighting/war elements of the movie rather than the magic, religious ones. I'll ponder that one for a while.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Favorite quote

From one of the best film noir movies of all time- The Third Man-

"Don't be so gloomy. After all it's not that awful. Like the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."

Time for me to get all High Fidelity n shit. (didn't really care for the book, was so-so on the movie- must be a guy thing)

Top 5 film noir movies of all time:

Sunset Boulevard (gotta love Billy Wilder- I would put The Apartment on the list if I didn't think someone out there would bitch n moan)
Double Indemnity
The Third Man
The Maltese Falcon

They would make an excellent boxed set. Or an equally excellent film festival. But the bestest, most earthshakingly bizarre film festival was one I undertook in Grad school- Kafka, followed by Naked Lunch, finished off with the ever so fine Barton Fink. Warped my mind forevermore. Who needs drugs, people?! This did nicely, thank you.

Another round

Today I have another job interview. This afternoon. I am hoping that it doesn't snow before that- it's supposed to- because this place gets scary when it snows. I can handle snow driving. It's the others who worry me. And we live on a very steep hill, and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't get up it if it gets very slick.

I was thinking about the whole snow thing. What I don't miss is the nasty cold. And shovelling. We had a long sidewalk in Bozeman, and it had lots of foot traffic, so we had to shovel often. The city would cite us if we didn't- the bastards. That wet, heavy snow was the worst of it.

But there is something magical about snow at night. In Missoula I lived near a park with lots of old Maple trees. The lights at night would create these orange-tinged halos around the trees. On snowy nights, it would get quiet. Muffled. I would walk to the park, and stand there under the trees and watch the snow fall. It would be so quiet I could hear the flakes hitting the ground beneath me. It was so hushed. I felt like I was alone in the world, and it was ok.

Then no doubt, I would get very wet and cold and have to go home and quit being silly in the snow. The best was walking home from school when I was little, though. What doesn't seem like lots of snow now that I'm a tall girl was pretty deep when I was 6. I would roll in it, and jump in it, and basically make a huge mess in people's very sculpted sidewalks along the way home. It usually took me twice to three times longer to walk home, because there was so much to divert my attention. Bright, shiny things have always distracted me. I also loved to eat the snow. Not the dry stuff- it's icky. But the wet melting snow that makes perfect iceballs was the best. I was a regular connoseur.

And I used to ski. It has been well over 15 years since I've done that- kind of a bummer really. But I'm sure my knees are thankful. They were really starting to suffer. I was never all that good, and the equipment back in the day was pretty unforgiving. I just liked to go really fast down the hill. Sort of out of control. But it was fun. I was too scared to really get good at it- never could take the proper chances, and never really learned to control the momentum. I was also too bloody lazy to approach it from the right level of fitness. This was before I was diagnosed with the exercise induced asthma- so running was really painful, and I avoided it.

I don't plan on getting back into the skiing thing at this late date, but it's fun to remember. And hope that the snow here waits until tomorrow. Then Kenga will take a snow day, and we can watch movies. I have a few more spaghetti westerns keyed up on the tivo, along with Yojimbo, and a couple of 30's gangster flics. He oughta enjoy at least one of those! Maybe. I think he's getting very sick of my western phase. Who can blame him. I plan on starting up with musicals next (see the earlier post to that effect), and he will then long for the days of westerns. Ah, sweet, sweet nostalgia.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Mea culpa.

I erred. It's human, I suppose. I said that my father gives good guilt, and has done it lately. Well, it has been quite a while since he's done so- and I'm the first to admit that when he did it last, I deserved it. So I retract any and all claims that he's been up to guilt trips- he has the power, but I haven't done anything to invoke said power. I'll be planning on keeping it that way!!! Sorry dad!

Monday, November 28, 2005

Black Friday

So named not because it's awful to work it in the retail biz, but named because it's the day retailers depend upon to go into the black for the year. Do we pity them? Maybe. But I pity the poor fools working for da retail man even more. Been there. Done that.

This year I did something entirely different on Black Friday. Yay! I got the call on Wednesday, at 4:45 from the agency. They were in dire need of people to work at the IMAX theater handing out some brochures or shit. I said sure. WTF. They said wear professional attire, a warm coat and they'll see you there.

Friday morning dawned. It was raining. Hard. And I didn't want to do it. I didn't want to do it. I spent a good 30 minutes trying to talk myself into going. Finally I just got ready and went.

I got there and only one other person was there. She was wet too. Holding a bottle of foetid looking fluid. After about 10 minutes the supervisor showed up hefting a heavy box and some bags. We couldn't get into the IMAX until 10. Glad we all showed up at 8:30. We went to the food court and discussed what we were really doing. Seems that we were going to hand out exit polls for the showing of Polar Express. In 3D. Then we would collect the forms. And get 300 by the end of the day. Or else. I never did hear what the or else would be. Probably some kind of sinister Warner Brother's displeasure. I dunno.

We got to the theater and set up in time for the first showing. Most people had what appeared to be at least a dozen squirming, damp, impatient children in tow. Bet they had lots of time to fill out an exit form, right? Especially since the geniuses at Warner Bros had decided that despite only really needing info for 4 of the questions, made the fucking thing front and back of a full sized piece of paper. Right ON!!

OK- let's get this straight- the whole bloody thing was depressing. The smell of the popcorn curdled my stomach, and sucessfully kept me from having an appetite all day. And the people I was working with were FREAKS. Mostly benign, but in one case seriously creepy. And since I hadn't been told what I was really going to be doing, I lacked any kind of reading material for the interludes while the movie was playing. I just closed my eyes, sat on the floor and listened to the others talk.

Team spirit- 2 of them were young, pretty inoccous girls. Nice. But boring. Then there was one middle-aged woman who kept to herself, but seemed fine. Then there were the freak twins. #1 was a largish (think taller Nathan Lane) gay man wearing a scarf that looked like Elmo with glitter. He knitted it himself. Did a fine job. For Halloween he was Glenda the Good Witch. Made the pink tulle dress himself, he did. I watched him get bitchier and testier as the day went on. I am guessing that it was a blood sugar thing. Hope so, because he had another job later at the carousel, where he would be in full contact with more children. He was also the kind of guy who is permanently disgruntled. He told me his professional history, and it was full of persecution and bitterness. I'm a thinking that he is one of those people who is perpetually unhappy at work. Bummer too, because they tend to bring others along for the ride.

Then there was freak #2. Deep breath. She was trippy. Scary trippy. Dead ringer (only a little taller) for the Romanian- Anka. Dead fucking ringer. Even the odd 100 yard stare. And had the same strange way of dealing with conversation- basically not really understanding normal conversation so much as interrupting with non-sequiturs that kind of related to the original topic. She was very tall- over 6 foot, I am guessing. With that odd sausage casing build- somewhat slender, but no muscle mass to add distinction, and no bones showing. She was also happy to tell us all about being a Sister of something something something- they dress up as nuns and wear geisha makeup and pass out condoms at events. I heard all about the way to get into the order, the rules, etc. Ad nauseum, ad infinitum. She also told us a truncated version of her life story. Sounded pretty rough. And she was a witch. And she "cleansed" peoples' homes of bad hoodoo. And she had just broken up with her girlfriend. She followed me around a lot.

Friendly, but creepy. She approached people with the forms and said, "Hello, I have a gift for you." I suspect that they took the forms from her in order to get some space. I saw a few of them sneaking their forms back onto the mother table later on, when she wasn't around.

After a couple of movies, they interspersed it with the Harry Potter film, and I left for the day. Enough pleasure for me, I thought. I decided that I really do HAVE to get a job in some normal kind of place- dealing with broken people really isn't my forte. Interesting, yeah- but they make me sad and tired.

Saturday, November 26, 2005


Today my mom and step dad were in Helena- they had anthropology students doing some work determining boundary lines for the potter's cemetary on some of their land. The land is being developed, and no one wants to dig up bodies. Fun for the students, interesting for everyone else. So today's subject is digging things up. For fun and profit.

Digging up the truth. Over time I've found out that the truth is in most cases subjective. The winners determine what it is. Ask anyone who lost a war- define a war criminal- mostly someone who followed orders. The crime? Being on the losing side while following those orders. So whose truth is the best? Ask the religious. They will claim theirs. But with so many conflicting opinions in that regard, it's easy to get confused.

Digging up the past. Dicey proposition at best. Distant past is pretty safe. History in particular- that's why many document collections have dates in the distant future for revealing the contents. All the people involved will be dead, buried and untouchable. Good for them. Wouldn't want to actually live with the consequences of what the secrets were. Keep that under wraps. On the down low, as it were.

Personal past? Hmmmmm. There again, question of perspectives. Take any occurance. Run it past the various people who were there. Betcha you'll get any number of takes on what really happened. Add time and shake real hard, and it'll get murkier. Only the really passionate emotions stay pure. Hatred in particular. The reasons for the hatred might be lost, or dissapate over time, but the hatred can stick around very easily. Especially if it's cultivated properly. I think that some people live just to do this. They are the gardeners of a specific crop. It's easier than letting something go.

Digging up reality. Another set of perceptions that not only change with the amount of tequila consumed, but change with age. Kids see things that adults try to ignore. They learn to conceal and not pay attention to those things. They learn about loyalty- to whom over all others. They learn the costs for being loved. What they're meant to do in return. There are always strings attached. Always. Anyone who denies this is either a liar or a fool. Avoid them- they want something.

Digging for clams. Lots of work. Clams are gross. I wouldn't recommend it.

Digging for treasure. Define treasure. I don't have a metal detector, and am not bored enough to go get one and develop a new and slightly creepy hobby. Give me a few more months of unemployment, and it might just happen, however...

Digging for gold. Specific treasure. Makes people crazy-like. Watch The Treasure of Sierra Madre if you don't believe me. In AZ, there was a show on local access cable called Gold Fever. It had a theme song that went "gold gold gold gold fever fever fever fever..." in kind of a mind-numbing drone. It was about how to find gold. It seemed to be a big thing in the Phoenix area. Something about lost treasure in the mountains near Apache Junction. Whatever. I just liked the low production values, and singing the song. Especially after consuming some tequila. Gold gold gold gold fever fever fever fever....

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Newly minted obsession

This week it's the classic Western. I've steadfastly avoided the genre in the past- lived in the west, didn't see much to celebrate about it- hated seeing the blasted Charlie Russell exhibit in place of real art every year- hated the faux cowboys I went to school with- they were such narrow-minded little bigots.

But then I guilted myself into seeing High Noon. And my world went all haywire. Now I saw that the really skillful filmmakers in the genre were making all kinds of statements via the Western. Ahhhhh.....

So last night we watched The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence. Still not as satisfying as any of the vengeance instilled Clint Eastwood ones, but pretty fun nonetheless. I love watching Jimmy Stewart act with people who could hold their own with him. John Wayne isn't my favorite actor by a long shot, but he's well used in this one. And I liked the civil rights subtext.

So. I have The Ox Bow Incedent cued up on the tivo, and will likely get through that one today. Henry Fonda said it was his favorite of his movies, as I recall. He was kind of a jerk, so whatever, Henry. But it also stars Frank Morgan, and I liked him while growing up on MASH.

I'm trying to figure out what genre to attach to next if this unemployment thingy goes on too long- maybe the musical? (fucking shoot me if that happens- I really hate musicals...with the exceptions of Sound of Music and My Fair Lady. Oh and Fiddler on the Roof...damn...maybe I don't really really hate them after all...)

Why I hate Thanksgiving

It's such a crap holiday for me. At least it's time off of work. If I had work. But then, that's part of the issue, no?

Historically it was the worst of all holidays. It wasn't redeemed by the happy feelings of receiving presents. So this would happen- without fail.

Spend the day getting all of that food together. Under the pressure umbrella of mom wanting perfection in all things- food, emotional, and otherwise. Put up with younger sister and her bitchiness in its varied forms. Put up with cranky grandparents. Watch evil Grandpa drink. Know with the security of the inevitable what is coming.

Serve dinner very early in the day. (I never really figured that one out. Thanksgiving dinner is more akin to Thanksgiving late lunch.). Then sit back and watch the inedible mass congeal when Grandpa finally lets loose- he's been percolating all fucking day. The shitstorm issuing from his mouth is usually pretty impressive. Especially since I was the target 98% of the time after the divorce, and Dad absented himself from the picture. Make that 100%. I never saw him verbally attack anyone else. Only me. Inevitably I would lose my temper and tell him to go fuck himself. Then leave. And my mother would sigh, with the forebearance of the angels above, and clear the table. Grandpa would go back to simmering, no doubt waiting in anticipation for next year.

Once I hit college I played my only card for sanity. I refused to go home for Thanksgiving. Ever again. I only revoked this standing rule once- several years ago. Grandpa had just died, and I did it as a favor to my mom. I took Kenga along for the ride. And it was a ride, indeed. Grandma was just starting to lose her grip on reality. So it was kinda amusing to see her deal with the half non-white person I married so long ago. The official story is that she really likes him, and thinks he's great. The real story is that they have never forgiven or forgotten his Japaneseness. She usually has to tell me why they still hate the Japanese. The war, doncha know? And she does speak in the "we" tense- not Imperial "we", but Grandpa's still around "we". Creepy.

The good news- I won't be going home for the festivities. I'll be safe and sound with friends. I'll see the family at Christmas. They'll be settled into the holiday mood more securely, and it'll be fine. Any fireworks will be supplied by aforementioned bitchy sister, and easily contained. Mostly cuz ding dong the witch is dead, and he won't be coming back for any more rounds. So that's what I'm thankful for, I guess. Peace on earth, and no more ugliness in the name of family harmony. No more sick tummies afterwards, and reproachful looks from Grandma and Mom. And that's that.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Fact of the day

If this doesn't creep you out a tad, you're sterner stuff than I.

Did you know that Helen Keller had her eyes removed and replaced with glass ones because her real eyes were scary? And when she became a celebrity, it was an issue? EWWWWW!!!

Better than botox, baby!

Also- new book to check out one and all- if you like something interesting- just stayed up til 2:00AM finishing it- because I had to.

The Wilderness, by Karen Novak. I'll probably be inflicting it on choice people on my Christmas list this year. So if you do buy it, or read it before I go shopping, let me know, or you might get a duplicate copy!!!

I also finished The Codex, by Lev Grossman. Fun, but with one of those endings that makes you want to shake him- bit of a let down.

I watched, and highly recommend The Big Country yesterday. Gregory Peck, Burl Ives and of all things, a young and relatively hot Charleton Heston. It was gorgeous. Directed by William Wyler (who also did Ben Hur). I got totally sucked in. It's a western. Not my bag, for the most part (I grew up in the west, hated it, and wanted to leave for more populous parts as soon as I could- but then didn't, and decided that after all it wasn't too horrible- except for my home town- still hate it). But a lovely movie nevertheless. And there's a cool Cold War subtext to it- which is interesting when you consider the Heston inclusion.

Still jobless. Still working on Christmas presents. Still feeding the cats...they would kill me if I stopped...

Monday, November 21, 2005

Crimes and Felonies

Kenga got a book at the library- called Scenes of the Crime- with a foreword by James Ellroy (one of my true guilty pleasures- the man can invoke a time and place better than most- and has taught me more slang words for female genitalia than I thought possible). It's crime scene photos from the LAPD archives. Not all murders/death- some other stuff. It's interesting. They really edited carefully- nothing too horrible- all corpses have their faces, no children, basically pretty straight forward stuff.
Interesting though. Basically I am thinking that the photographers are an odd lot. These guys did some interesting things. While they had to provide a document of the crime that the investigators could use later (since a crime scene is by its nature temporary), they also had to keep some kind of emotional distance from it (probably to keep from cracking up- I met a crime scene photographer once who had cracked- not so good). So they focused on framing the photos in unique ways. There's one in particular of a glass door that had been shot though- and the photographer had taken care to include the reflection of children in the neighborhood gawking at the crime scene. Pretty cool shot.
It's kind of a moving book in a way. I am looking at people whose lives either changed or ended in such a sudden way. Most of the murdered ones were cut down in their prime. Looks like mostly middle to lower class. With the notable exception of Thelma Todd's death (look her up on IMDB- sad story). Creepy side note- I knew what I was looking at in several instances before reading the descriptions- I think I know too much about historic crime in LA for my own good.

The part that gets me though is the eyes. The expression on the faces. Just the abrupt ending of it all. No easing out by degrees. Just a sharp end. Some look surprised. Some just look sad. And they are all (with one exception) pretty young. Though since the crimes occurred mostly in the 20s and 30s, they would be very old or dead by now anyway. Just the permenance of it. Always dead at 25. Or 30. Funny how many of the crimes have to do with bootlegging. Makes prohibition seem silly on that level- it seems to have increased crime, rather than eliminated it. Go figure. But that could be a scewed editorial slant by the book's authors too. They obviously chose these images very carefully. With clear intent. Like I said before- it could've been far, far worse. Uglier. Stronger. More brutal.

I'm also haunted by the privacy that's being broken. Death seems like such a personal thing. That these people's deaths are in a book seems odd. I don't have any personal connection to them- if it was a book of my dead relatives, I would feel much differently. But it's strange to see this kind of invasion. I guess I would call it that- since I can't think of any better description.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Not much to say

Kenga took several days off- so I've actually had someone to spend time with during the day! And since we don't fight incessantly- it's been fun.

Yesterday we had an adventure. I took him on the bus to downtown- it was his first time. We visited the museum, the library and a newsstand that I like. He saw my neighborhood for the first time. It was good.

Now we prepare for house guests. So I can't spend lots of time online. There are things to do- people to see- I get to feel important for a while!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Hey guess what!

It's raining. And cold. And I'm still unemployed.

But now the focus of my life (besides getting a job- I haven't given up- I have not yet begun to fight- I regret that I have only one life to give...whatever) is on Christmas presents for the many varied family members. This year I've decided to try and make stuff for them. And not using cat fur and dryer lint held together with assorted kitchen ingredients (cream of tartar, anyone?). Nope. I know that certain peoples on my Santa's good list read this, so I won't detail. But it will keep me busy, and be happy.

And unless there's a big blizzard that prevents it, we will be going home for the holidays. We lack snow tires, or tyres, so shouldn't be all reckless. Despite what Kenga wants. Kenga doesn't get everything he wants- he's not Lola. At least not today. Maybe tomorrow I'll let him be Lola. But not Lola Lola. She was a bitch. (I'll perhaps give anyone who gets the second allusion a bright shiny dollar! I'm being all esoteric and obtuse- because it's raining, and I'm bored.)

Time to watch the rest of the Joan Crawford movie on the tivo. Then maybe finish up with a delightful Carole Lombard confection. Yummy.

Vanity thy name is me

Part of the ongoing maintenance is the hair. Now we are red again. (such the newsflash- it's fake... real is a nondescript blond, with I suspect by now, tons of white- I am really curious in a morbid way as to how much white- I haven't checked in a very long time.) Funny thing though. For some reason, guys- usually older- insist on calling me "red" Like it's some kind of film noir hell that we've stepped into all of a sudden. And they're Sam Spade. It's goofy. I know that they're being nice, but it's very strange to refer to some stranger by the color of their hair. If I see a nice looking guy, should I say- "Hi brown?" What if he's African American? Then what do we have? An incident, I would guess.

Just gotta thank mom for the white hair genes, though. Shout out mom! Kinda wish I could trade that one for the 20/20 vision, or amazing metabolism that you have that keeps you the same weight you were in college...

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Literary snobbism

I read a book recently by an old friend. She is a wonderful short story writer- but I've been consistently disappointed by her novels. She just can't sustain story lines in a convincing fashion. And turns out that she is a literary snob. Standards- yes, important to maintain. But snobbishness is not cool in my book.

Her book was rather autobiographical- which kind of disturbed me to begin with, as it was jarring- there was no logical reason for the bits of herself that she trotted out. I know what she was trying to attempt, but it was surprisingly poorly done.

Then there was the story itself. Part of it was about being a romance novelist. And how horrible that is for anyone who can really write. That's where I got pissed off. Now for a very deep, and dark secret- I have read the occasional romance novel. Was avidly into them when I was around 12. Snuck them home from the library, and was off in another place. Not really good for me at the time- it did probably set me up for some reality checks later- but there were hours of fun involved anyway.

I see romance novels as interesting. They are so easy to decode, and have such a clearly defined formula. And I don't think that's a bad thing. I think of all types of fiction that I've encountered, the romance novel comes the closest to illustrating a certain kind of zeitgeist. These books really pull on archetypes in a clear and meaningful way- for lots and lots of people. I don't feel like it's fair to condemn them for reading them. Not fair at all. Maybe they aren't Balzac, Trollope or even Elliott, but they give the reader something to enjoy. And given how many women probably are one romance novel away from going batshit on any given day, I say, read on, sisters.

The other thing about her book that was rather nasty had to do with a Native American character. I remember a painting that Kenga and I saw at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. For those not familiar- wonderful museum of Native American art, culture and history. The katchina room is as creepy as it gets- chock full o hoodoo that made the back of my neck crawl. Back to the painting. It was modeled on Ingres's Jupiter and Thetis, with a Native American guy enthroned, and a white woman beneath him, with a hand crawling up his neck. She was wearing her obligatory bead earrings, and looking at him with naked adoration. It was one of the most underhanded artistic jabs that I've seen (short of a Diego Rivera portrait that I saw once- about busted a gut laughing at how he portrayed the sitters...nasty...). She was a poser. He was not real to her. He was an image of her rebellion, romantic longing, etc.

So back to the book- the character in it was basically ditto the painting. It was unpleasant. I don't enjoy stereotypes unless there's a way to break them. She didn't pull that one off. The stereotype was full on intact by the end, and the slam on romance authors/readers also intact. I saw this as dishonest. And I'm too much of a wuss to ever tell her to her face...

Somthing to do

Besides babysitting cats, I mean. I watched Kagemusha yesterday. Kurosawa is a passion of mine. Even with the silly scenes, he was breathtaking. Interesting trivia note- Kagemusha was produced for foreign distribution by Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas. Whoda thunk?!

Also on the Tivo were The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer, with Myrna Loy and Cary Grant. I liked watching the two of them play together.

And the other good one from this week- that ought to be required viewing- The Haunting. From 1963. Lovely movie- taken from a creepy story by Shirley Jackson. It's one of those that stuck with me for quite a while afterwards.

And now back to the kitty babysitting thing- I have to go give Buddy a time out. He's being naughty. (bet you think I'm kidding!)

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Bitter Betty's homemaker tips

When you install something with a sticker on it- fucking remove the sticker after it's installed. Immediately. Do not let it stay on the window/toilet/whatever for a lenghthy stay- it will get icky and difficult. That's just lazy and slipshod.

When you have a stainless steel sink, it needs to be scoured out once in a blue moon, or it will get stained by water/soap spots, and need weeks of scouring regularly to get it nice and shiny again. And don't put grout in there, or rusted objects. Stainless doesn't mean bulletproof.

Anything used for cooking food, particularly for human consumption, needs to be cleaned occasionally. This includes stoves and especially ovens. This is not a joke. This is not a suggestion. This is a rule.

Installing black granite shiny counters in a house with perpetual cats is a stupid idea. Always.

White/light beige carpets are never a good idea when cats and children are present. Avoid them.

When you have a cat that likes to urinate to mark territory, please shut her/him out of the bedroom that offends her/him- the smell will outlast her/his stay in the house. And nothing is worse on a humid, rainy day than the smell of kitty behavioral problems past. (luckily our cats haven't decided to follow suit- I don't think I could handle it). And once said kitty has marked, for fuck's sake, clean the crap/urine up!!! Don't be a fucking pig.

And finally, when cleaning the toilet (yes, you knew we would come to this), always scrub under the rim. No one wants to find your hardened, dried, scummy poop on the toilet years after you no longer live there. It is unsavory, unsanitary, and just vile.

(can you tell we're cleaning house today???)

Friday, November 04, 2005

How not to go batty ...

I've made a concerted effort not to go batshit crazy. Why, you ask? Well, it would be a tad inconvenient, and Kenga wouldn't like it much. I don't really relish the role of Bertha Rochester (read Jane Eyre, if you dare- she's in the attic.). Batshit isn't becoming- unless there's a pile of money involved. And in our case, there just isn't.

So. Keepin busy. Scheduling all of the stuff that should be done over the course of a week, so the pressure to get it all done at once doesn't paralyze me. So that the guilt of not getting it done doesn't keep me awake at night. So the self-loathing of feeling inadequate and stupid doesn't eat me alive. All in good time.

And knitting again. Just like Madame Defarge. Sitting at the foot of the guillotine, knitting while the heads hit the basket. Just being careful to keep the blood off of the wool.

It's all good. Really.

Anthropology report

I got this as part of an email, and thought that it was interesting.

Pallu, or the portion of the sari that falls over the left
shoulder, is usually its most decorated region, often picking up
and elaborating on the small motifs on the border or main body of
the drape. Much of the beauty of the garment thus lies in the
pallu, and it is the part that designers agonize over and which
shopkeepers use to clinch the sale.

Further, touching of the pallu by another is no small act, but a
most personal piece of interaction. It signifies an intimacy
which has been described thus: "as if by caressing a leaf one is
able to touch the tree." If someone gets too attached to a
person, they are likely to be teased by having it said that they
have 'attached themselves to the others pallu' (as a television
presenter of a live show said to a fan who kept phoning her
during the performance). In fact, signifying the eternal nature
of their union, the Indian groom during the wedding needs to tie
one end of his attire to the pallu of his bride. Thus yoked, they
then proceed to circumambulate the sacred fire seven times.

Thus the importance placed in Indian cinema on kissing becomes a little clearer.
Intimacy in such a crowded place seems quite prescribed.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

You'd think

That since I've got nuthin else to do, I would be blogging my ass off. Well you would be wrong.

Kenga and I have come up with an elaborate calendar that gives me things to do during my long, long, long days. And it helps. The house is finally getting fully unpacked, and very clean. And I'm applying all over tarnation (still in Tennessee Williams land a bit).

But I did spare an afternoon for creepy Halloween crappy 70s movie fest, Year 1. I watched an assortment of Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing confections. Some very, very bad. Some kind of ok. But all very fun. Not scary at all. I don't handle scary very well. So this was a must.

I also watched Wicker Man- allegedly a cult classic about burning some dude up to make the apples grow. Christopher was in it- he had a very poncy hair do. It was funny. Lots of banging in it- and it got an X rating back in the day.

I finished it all off by watching the 40's version of Cat People, which was wonderful. Gotta love the old stuff. Like fine wine.

And today, miracle of miracles, the sun is shining. I'll be outside some. Soon.


I'm taking the theme of this post from a blogfriend (thanks Polly) who wrote today about the crazy chick in the press phenomena (Jess, Brit, et. al.). I have a spin on that that I'll share. Just cuz I feels like it!

Well. Shall I say right now that Tennessee Williams had it dead on? "Ah have always depended upon the kindness of strangers." Anyone with a passing acquaintance with Streetcar, knows whereof I speak. Especially the Viviene Leigh version. She was a total nutcase to start with (I love that kind of olde tyme Hollywoode shit), and that role drove her around the bend. Her English belfry was chock full o bats by the time the movie wrapped. Poor Viv. And Poor Larry (Olivier, for those without IMDB on the bookmarks).

Anyhew- I think that there is a certain kind of woman- usually raised with a very overbearing father- who snaps at a certain time, and gets all Blanche Dubois on us. And the ones who do it in the public eye are the most fascinating of all. The non-famous ones just scare the crap out of their families. And make scenes at Thanksgiving (God, I HATE Thanksgiving...sorry...another post there....).

So, let's watch the show unfold, and give Tennessee a tip of the glass for being about as accurate as possible, given that he's dead and all.

And if there were a male version of Blanche Dubois, who would that be? I nominate Jack White. Just cuz I think he's got creepy scary covered pretty well. And I love him despite myself.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Another thing to be pissy about

I was at the new Barnes and Noble. On the bestseller shelf is a stupid book. It's all about the government's plot to make you sick, and keep you sick, and hide the "truth" that will change your life.

Right. So I decided to give it a look see to get an idea of what kernels of wisdom they offer. Right. All was ok until I saw the part about wearing the magnetic ring. Then I expected the tinfoil hats to start getting face time. Because we're seeing some silliness now.

Then there was a claim that really got to me. According to the author, skin cancer is caused by sun block. He backs this up with the solipsim that people who wear the most sun block suffer from skin cancer the most. Damn. Little did I know! Stupid me. Thought that my skin cancer was caused by all of the non-sunblock exposure that I had as a child. But really....

Pissed me off big time. I wanted to call someone and yell at them. But then I decided that if people are stupid enough to a) buy the dumb book, and b) follow the instructions, then there will be fewer people. Because they will die young. With their magnetic rings and lack of sunblock. Then there will be more parking spots and chocolate cake for me! Yay!

Well- that was ... interesting

The interview didn't go as well as planned. I think it deserves fiasco of the year award. Why? Well, not my fault exactly.

I was doing the song n dance. Answering the questions. Making the connections. Communicating my ass off, if you will. Then one of the interviewers- who had been in and out of the room the entire time- decided to score some points off of me. Had it been a normal meeting, not an interview, I wouldn't have put up with her shit. Not for a moment. But since it's an interview, and I must play nice, I had to deal with her very obnoxious comment.

I was discussing my job back in the day when we were determining how it would fit within the company. I said that I refused to do the books, and wanted to focus on the Project Management side of things. She wanted details of how I had "refused" to do something that my boss had requested. Fuck. Let's discuss context, shall we? I was in the middle of discussing how I had been instrumental in developing the project management protocol for the business. It hadn't happened prior to my assuming the position because the woman who I replaced had been saddled with the books, etc. And I am not an accountant. So I was on the defensive, and had to defend myself to this little nasty woman. If she had been in the room while I had been there - the ENTIRE time- she would've gotten the background. Instead, she had the "refused" thingy to hang up on.

I sidled a bit and told her that it was more of a discussion of priorities, and capabilities. That I wasn't capable of doing the books. That we needed an admin person anyway (and boy did we ever get one- another story- I digress). It sucked. The other people in the room were very nice, and seemed embarrassed by her- they were even nicer after her little nastiness. But I think that it's safe to assume that I tanked. From that point onward. Even though one of the people walked me to the elevator, and kept up the small talk. She probably has the power to squash any hopes I had. So perhaps, I am lucky. Perhaps she is one of the nasties that I try to avoid in jobs and life. The soul suckers who reside in companies with the sole role of making others miserable. Fuck her if that's what she is.

Or she is very proud of herself for discovering what a bad seed I really am. How very unworthy I am. How horrible I am as an employee. I told her to feel free to call my boss and discuss the situation with him. After all, I was only there for 3 years after "refusing" to do something that he requested. And I only left to move to Seattle. Hmmmm. Tempting to hit the vodka. Very tempting...

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Uh huh.

So W withdrew poor Harriet's nomination. And then he blamed the Senate. How very disingenous of him. Now for my rant- you know you were waiting for it!

The lack of personal accountability of this administration is probably the most maddening aspects of the whole debacle. They consistently lie, cheat and leave their allies hanging in the breeze, and then it's always someone else's fault. In this particular case, W has no one to blame but himself for nominating someone with such minimal obvious credentials. And rather than provide information about what she has done for him since he's been in the white house, he pulls her- citing executive privelege. Love it. Such lese majesty. Such arrogance. She has done not much else with her career. What the fuck does he think the Senate is going to base their decision on? His good word? Right. Especially since right about now, members of his administration have to be sweating the whole possible indictment thingy.

I saw this coming years ago. I was in the Fray on Slate and said that his running the country as a business really bothers me. I don't think that the rules that govern a good (or in his case, indifferent to poor) CEO really apply to the Presidency. The person I was debating went for the jugular and derided me as an idiot. Yeah. Well I still stand behind my words. And think that history has proven a little somethin somethin. I hate that the most corrupt administration since the Teapot Dome scandal (check it out on Wikipedia) is probably this one. Sickening. And before you slam me for being a hypocrite and drag up the Clinton Presidency, halt. Show some restraint, for cryin out loud. I NEVER said that the Clinton's were some kind of miraculous antidote to corruption. Yeah, I liked them better, not gonna lie. But they did the same kind of ethically winky shit. And that's NOT ok.

I'm enough of a realist to know that without sketchy ethics, you probably won't make the kinds of deals with the people who will get your ass elected. I guess I just expected it to be a little less overt. And I'll tell you what- I would prefer a sad little sex scandal any day to a war of dubious lineage, Haliburton running the show, and secret agents getting exposed by members of the administration. It's ugly. And I really do wonder if it has to be this way- isn't there a Frank Capra out there to produce movies that get people questioning things again? No- do not suggest that Michael Moore is the newest version. I will not listen to that cant. Stuff and nonsense. Moore is a hack, with an axe to grind. He does some good, and plenty of bad. It's never smart to tell people how stupid they are and expect them to like your message enough to vote as you tell them. That's essentially patronizing. I can't blame people for getting ticked off at that kind of crap. He's a heavy-handed dunderhead.

There. I feel much better now. I've done my part to churn up the waters some more. And why not. I have such a readership...

I do, however, feel a little sorry for Harriet- some friend. Letting you get savaged by the conservative right for weeks...and then not really apologizing for putting your shit on the line in the first place. W does NOT rock.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

It's just a phase

I must've been around 8 or so. I had a fascination with witches. I was reading every book about them that I could find. I loved the idea of magic. I wanted a little of it in my life.

So one day- probably a Saturday when I was bored- I decided that my mom was a witch. I decided this, and determined that it wasn't a good thing. That she would be pulled over to the darker side if I didn't practice some preventative measures.

Now how exactly does one keep one's mother from going to the evil magic? Well, one takes a kitchen chair, pulls it over to the coat closet, and removes all of the gold colored metal hangers. Yup. She was going to use the gold colored wire hangers in her evil magic. So I put them in my closet and replaced them with black ones. Thus defusing the potential problem. With the gold ones safely in my room, she wouldn't have any power to play with, and would keep on the straight and narrow. Not that she would ever notice all of the gold ones in my closet...or the ones in her closet...or my sister's closet...

No- only the ones in the coat closet counted.

I don't get it. Still. But it was important to me once. Seriously important. I stayed awake worrying about it. Probably the silliest and safest thing that's ever kept me awake at night worrying. I think I already told you I was a little odd and bookish.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Gettin stuff done

Got a job interview on Friday. And thus and so. It begins. Have been working at getting everything done. Personal statement. Paying bills. Job applications. Resume.

The list seems to asexually reproduce.

Last night at the Latona pub, there was music. Live music. Swear to god in Himmel that the upright bass player was the bass player for Moonpenny Opera. Without the scary clown makeup. Swear it on Grandma's bible. Swear it on the little fontenelle of someone's precious baby. Swear it on Kenga's socks.

And the beer was delicious.

No chocolate cake for us, though. We had enough of that methamphetamine concoction last week. We just said no. And had quesidillas instead.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Learning to take one's lumps

Yesterday was the big LSAT score day. Reckoning, if you will. And I'm not jubilant. Not crying too hard, but not jubilant. Let's discuss the bell curve, shall we? Fucking bell curve. This particular one was brutal. I did exactly how I expected. Exactly. However, the curve was lower this time than it has been on past tests. If the curve had been what it was in December 2004, or February 2005, I would be a very happy girl. No such luck. Crap. I cannot throw more resources at that test. I couldn't do better. No way. Just don't have it in me. So now I just hope that it was good enough to get me into school.

And yes, I did substantially better than last time, but not stellar. Just not stellar. Crap. Now I'm gonna go and do my best not to think about it for a while. Kenga took me out for nachos and beer last night to help assuage the pain. Good Kenga.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Crazy crap I live with


These cats in the house are insane. Not like that's a news flash or anything.

The one on Prozac has a thing where he gets all cuddly. Then he has to start licking his nipples. Only the bottom two. They are kind of bald. It's a little disturbing.

The white one- who is a BOY, dammit- has a thing where when the little one is on the bed with me, he has to mount Buddy, grab his neck with his teeth and assert domination. Accompanied by Buddy's vocal protests. It's disturbing.

The large one- who is BIG BONED, dammit- basically lays in one spot all bloody day. Until he gets hungry. Then he paces around and squeaks. It's not a sound you would expect from such a large cat. It's disturbing.

The foster child is very good, but has a tendency to drool when petted. And he likes to get under the covers. The other day I was in bed in my jammies in the morning. He got under the covers and was kneading my tummy. Then he bit me. Really hard. On the stomach. Like he expected milk flow. It was disturbing.

I need a job. I have to get away from these strange little creatures. They're actually kind of creepy, when you get down to the gremlins were creepy. Cute as hell, but if you let them eat after midnight.....

Tales from the front

There was a boy. A very screwed up boy. He tried to get me fired. Lost his job. Was so sad. (I'm thinking in the tune of one of the songs from Moulin Rouge right now. Sorry- slight digression into sappiness. Couldn't be helped)

He was a mess. I spotted it at 20 paces. Knew he'd be trouble the minute the soft-hearted (headed?) boss hired him. Within days I saw the signs. Smelled like pot after lunch. Had the shakes in the morning, after coming in very late. The sleek veneer wore off within a week. Not a good sign. Started to wear tattered clothes to client meetings. In Montana, that's not done. They still like their bankers to dress up. They like to feel like they are trusting their money to professionals. Artists are one thing, but they have expectations of the people who draw up the papers.

Then he decided to take me out. He was nasty. I knew what he was doing. He wasn't subtle about it. I handled it. I had allies. They knew what I was capable of doing for them. They knew that he was a sinking ship. The boss was still clueless. It was an ugly, painful time. Lots of nasty snipes in my direction. Lots of little tantrums.

Then someone quit. I took on her job. And really owned it. It was such a good fit. Better than anything else. The only bad part was that he was still around poisoning the water supply. But he didn't matter- every day the cracks were showing more clearly than before. The boss couldn't ignore the complaints from clients. He couldn't ignore the missed meetings, and the really poorly executed contracts. And he couldn't ignore that the broken boy was taking the intern out to smoke at lunch. And the boy got cocky. He told me to my face, with a witness present that he had tried to get me fired. He couched it in what he probably saw as complimentary terms- to say that I was doing a good job, and deserved it now. Whatever, dude.

Of course the end was ugly- the boss couldn't handle it, and totally choked. It was drawn out, and we all got involved at his insistence. I told him to never, never put me in a situation like that again. It was probably the most uncomfortable thing I've witnessed- the gutting of a coworker, in front of everyone, with everyone's participation required. As much as I hated the boy then, I didn't have the stomach for watching an eviceration like that. Much less taking part. Finally, after an hour or so of discomfort, I asked the question. "Why are you still here? What are you doing? You don't seem to want the job anymore, what the hell are you trying to accomplish?" I told him that he needed to examine these questions, and decide what was best for himself. Seriously- it's just a fucking job. And if it was that bloody painful, wasn't it time to get the hell out? Especially since he wasn't doing it well at all?

One of the other people there criticized me later for being so blunt. But you know, I stand behind my actions. I was the only one who dared to express it directly. This wasn't the kind of guy who picked up on hints. He just didn't have those receptors. It was fucking sad as hell. I hated to see him self-destruct. It made me sick inside. And no, I didn't have an impulse to save his sorry ass- I've seen that move backfire enough to know better. Besides, I did have a touch of a grudge, and wanted him to leave no matter what. I wanted him somewhere else, and not on my back anymore.

He got out- got a better job making more money (the little fucker) and is still there. I can hope that he's gotten a little straightened out. But I don't really care so much as long as he doesn't kill anyone while driving in the state we saw him in on occasion.

And all of the participants of that meeting, with the exception of the boss are gone now. No one is there to remind him not to hire that kind of guy. No one is there to tell him that those kinds of problems are his sole responsibility to solve. Sigh...

Moving along now...

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Magic Mirror

I'm wondering how many people who stumble across the blog remember Romper Room. I sure do. It was the mainstay of my day as a small child. I believe that my particular version of it originated in Salt Lake City- it was on that cable channel. I remember seeing other versions of it on road trips, and being very confused.

I always wanted one of those magic mirrors. I wanted to be able to see my friends and family that way- even though I didn't have many friends as a child. Not a pity play, just reality- not very well socialized. Not at all. Kind of a bookish little freak, I'm afraid. Add artistic, and you might see the dilemna. Downright awkward physically- yes always the last one chosen for teams, and rightfully so. I would've chosen me last too. Very, very clumsy. Broke my arm falling off of the parallel bars in gym in 6th grade. I did score a Star Wars Tshirt out of the incedent, though- light blue with my name on the back in iron-on rainbow letters!

There was a point here...ahhh...that's right. Anyway, I was very dramatic at a young age. I would dress up in my mom's old bridesmaid's dresses (lots of tulle) and wear a towel on my head that represented a veil of some kind, and prance around the house putting on plays, and imagining many adventures. When Charlie's Angels came along, my friend Connie and I would trade off being a particular angel for the day, and we would fight imaginary crime. Neither of us ever wanted to be Sabrina. Poor Kate Jackson.

Once I hit High School, I decided to try out for the drama team. I competed for 3 years, and decided to quit in my senior year. By that time I had figured out that the coaches were a touch politically inclined, and that the public didn't properly appreciate my art. I always competed in either serious solo of serious duo, with my likewise ever so serious best friend. I was going to be an actor. An ACTOR. Capital A. Not actress. Never. That's just not a serious moniker.

A friend of mine in college was also inclined to be an ACTOR. She was funny, very talented (better than me- I can admit it now) and was chock full o aspirations of grandeur. She quit college and went to LA. She is in IMDB. As are the other two real standouts from my drama team. (I get to see one of them in movies from time to time, and am very proud of her) She hasn't done anything in quite a while, though. She never took the world by storm and became a star. Sad, actually. I never took the gamble. I just kind of knew that I didn't have the staying power. I didn't have the total faith in my own abilities. Not at that age. I was so full of self-loathing and mistrust that it would've probably yielded very bad consequences. And I didn't really want to work very hard at it. I also thought that the actors who I knew who were all full of "the craft" and "method approaches", etc. were silly. I am very glad that there aren't any tapes in existence of my performances- betcha they were horribly cringeworthy.

Anyhew, I would love to see if they are still involved. I hope so. They were good at it, and despite some of them being heartily annoying in real life, I enjoyed watching them perform.

I did always want to play the part of Portia in Merchant of Venice though...

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Damned chocolate cake

Chocolate cake seems to have contained a large amount of Crystal meth. We didn't sleep. Maybe 1-2 hours tops. Fine for me, but Kenga's gonna suffer. Not even the magic sleep bullet provided by Sigur Ros did the trick.

Stoopid chocolate cake. A friend of ours from AZ wrote a song called, Gluttony is next to Godlessness. Guess he was right. We're both sleepy Godless Gluttons.

I'm gonna slouch over to the couch (hey, that rhymed- cool!) and sit and let CNN wash over me like a tepid, semi-stinky bath.

Then I have a ton of movies Tivoed to watch. I got halfway through On the Waterfront before having to go to the interview yesterday. It's one of those misty, coldish October days here, and I'm feeling distinctly jammy-ish. With slippers even. That oughta make the cats happy.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Someone upstairs is fond of me

Won't send me a job, but did save my ass today.

Interview went well. I felt really good. Will know in a day or two. Now for a tale of mystery and divine intervention. Also, let it be said, I am a dumbass on occasion. Like this one.

Am driving around downtown looking for cheap parking. Yeah. Didn't want to pay through the nose for any stupid garage parking, no not me. Too smart for that. So. I find a spot. Pay for my time and hoof it to the interview. Plenty of time. All is well. The interview ends around 4:45. I get to the car in about 5 minutes. And the tow truck is there, hooking up the car next to mine. They were getting ready to tow mine too. Seems like I was in a spot that needs to be vacated at 4. I got a ticket, but got out of there before they tagged my car. Like I said, the timing was very, very good.

Went to Latona Pub for dinner- I can recommend them highly. Especially their specials. Only downside is that every meal comes with a lavish helping of mixed greens salad. Now there is a saga to share. Mixed greens salads give me a distinctly adverse reaction. Violently so. From every direction. And no, I've never figured out exactly which specific green is responsible. It's just too damned disagreeable to be heaving and otherwise occupied for several days. No exaggerating, either. I discovered that this was more than one food poisoning incedent after an abrupt exit from a business lunch a couple of years ago. Since then, I leave most salads alone. Which is a pity, since I have a fondness for salad.

There. I have unburdened myself about the salad problem. Feel much better.

Now if I just get the job, all will be better in the world. And Friday I'm supposed to get the LSAT scores...

Make it quick

Like pulling off a bandaid- quick. Not painless, but quick.

Just heard. Didn't get the job I interviewed for 3 weeks ago. Nothing like making me wait a bit...seems that their needs changed in 3 weeks. Figures.

Got an interview this afternoon. Also at the bank. Gotta get dressed up. Crap. Feels better to pout in my jammies, with my Ferrari/Michael Schumacher shirt on. Michael and I, we got troubles, yes we do. He didn't do well in his last race of the season- the car pretty much sucked all year. Me, well, I'm unemployed. And getting to the state of boredom that only spells trouble. Gonna start sewing those Halloween costumes for the kitties pretty soon...

And news from home isn't the best. It seems to be a Fall of lowered expectations and sinking spirits. Best not to dwell on that thought for long- don't want it to rub off on my bright and shiny attitude.

Time to go get all prettied up. Crap. I think I'll even wear nylons. I hate nylons. I better get the damned job!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

God help Lowe's

I just got back from a shopping foray. Not my favorite thing to do, mind you, but with endless seeming time stretching out in front of me, what else was I to do?

I went to Lowe's. And looked at bargain plants. For those of you who don't already know, I am a total plant freak. I have literally hundreds of orchids. Most of them were carted from Montana to Seattle when we moved. Love them all.

The bargain plants have bloomed, and are relatively healthy. And priced well. Home Depot sucks- they must just throw the bloomed out ones away. The bastards.

I found a couple. Priced well, pest free, and joy of joys, starting new blooms (no one must've noticed).

I go to check out and pay. The old lady at the register rang up the old man in front of me. His ant killer rang up incorrectly. Rather than deal with it, she got defensive that he didn't want to spend $78 on ant killer. She fixed it, but had to make a production of blaming the register. I should've known then...

It was my turn. Seems that Lowe's can't empower the cashiers with the ablility to enter sale prices on their own. They need manager overrides. If a Lowe's supervisor sees this, mark my words- THIS IS RETARDED!!!

Plant #1 rings up ok. Plant #2 rings up $10 more than marked. She seemed surprised when I protested, and stated categorically that I wasn't paying $10 more than the price listed. Then she said, "It rang up that way, I didn't do it." Like I was blaming her or something. I wanted to reply, "What, are you fucking 16 years old, lady?" But didn't. She got confused, tried to call the manager for another override, said, "the phone's busy."

I said, "I'll go to the main registers, there ought to be a manager there." It was just too bloody pitiful. I left her to her confusion.


As Kenga's coworker Ryan said, you can expect this kind of thing at McDonalds. There it's a crapshoot whether or not you'll get what you order. You're lucky at the drive through to get kind of what you want. If it's in the meat family, and you ordered a chicken sandwich, it's a successful trip. And if you ordered a soda and fries, and actually got both, well, you're one hell of a lucky one!

I'll just know for future reference that this particular woman isn't very gifted at cashiering. Her gifts must just lie elsewhere.

Stories I wish I could tell

I wish I knew the stories behind the following- only the principals are either dead or so dotty that the answers are gone.

What did Grandma think of California during the war, when Grandpa moved them there from East Helena? Did she miss her family? Did she make a lot of friends there? Was it an adventure, or was it just lonely?

What was her favorite color? Song? Food?

Why aren't there any photos of my other Grandparents' wedding? Or of Grandma pregnant?

Why was Grandpa so angry at life? What happened to him to turn him into such a bitter, mean man? And why did he hate my father and me so ardently?

Then there are the silly little incedentals- how tall was my Grandmother? What color were her eyes? I just don't remember.

These might seem trivial, and probably are, but I would love the chance to get the answers. Barring psychic intervention, I'll probably have to make up the answers myself, and be satisfied.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Syrian

Back in the 80s, when the world and I was young, I was in the Bay Area for a summer. Call it the summer of love- I was there for that purpose alone. The boyfriend at the time was the scion of a wealthy doctor and his scary, crazy wife.

One night, doctor dad brought an intern home for dinner. Dinners were quite the event. Expensive food, expensive wine, and plenty of pretentions. I wasn't in my element, and felt like I was an exhibit at the zoo.

Intern brought current girlfriend. He also bought gifts for the hostess. These were a very large box filled with tins of black Russian caviar. And an exquisite fillagree silver box in a larger velvet box. Expensive, expensive.

Intern was pretty nice, girlfriend was cute, and a magician to boot. It was one of the more relaxed dinners with the parents.

Afterwards, I found out that intern was the son of the head of the Syrian military. And then I found out what that entailed. Scary, scary. That was the summer I got to meet drug dealers (coke, not the usual MT stuff) for the first time. Also scary. Boogie Nights brings back some not too pleasant memories. Fucking Night Ranger...

So which was scarier? The son of the scariest guy in town, or the dealers? It was a draw at the time, but with hindsight, the intern by several miles.

Notes from the battlefield

It's going well. The enemy is on the run. We might have them vanquished. That's not a bad thing. But rather than bask in perceived glory, I'll just express cautious optimism. It's never let me down before.

Basically the struggle has been one of primarily control. Who exercised it, who was inappropriate, and who ultimately bears responsibility for what happened when the whole bloody scheme collapsed on the kitchen floor. And even though I get to play the movie over and over again in my head, I am ultimately NOT the one to blame. That's it in a nutshell. I wasn't the adult in charge. Nope. Might've been pretending to be, but wasn't. So, I need to wrap my head around letting the adults own the blame, letting myself give it up and release control. And that might defuse some of the endless percolating font of anger in my belly. Then my quest for justice for past wrongs (never, never to be fulfilled, btw- very Sisphean) might just abate.

And wouldn't that be a pip? It has driven me for longer than I care to remember. I wouldn't be who I am today without it. But it no longer serves a totally good purpose, and has turned on the mistress, so to speak.

I keep remembering with regret. But I am thinking on this. If I were truly the monster of my despair, I wouldn't care about any of this. I would be remorseless and righteous. I wouldn't cringe when I remember these things. It wouldn't phase me for an instant. So, I can be pleased that I have humanity, compassion and love. That my gentleness was impaired at the time, and wouldn't be so today. That still is hard to say out loud. It's hard to give up on a game where I consistently lose, and can depend on that losing.

Now to tackle the anger...and all that entails- which in this case is a big ball o' stuff. Ugly, ugly. Scary, scary. Without that armor to gird me, what will I do? How will I keep the world at a distance? How will I approach situations that would ordinarily demand a reaction? We're entering uncharted territory, and I'm afraid that the scouts were picked off by the enemy a while back.

Into the breach, brave hearts! (Ok- belaboring the battle metaphor a touch? Should I switch to pirates? ARRRRGGGGG!)

Apologies, and reqest for indulgence are in order.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Shuddering in my shoes

I'm sitting here listening to Matt Lauer lob softballs (soft, soft- made of rolled up socks) to the President and First Lady. Pretty little photo-op, Matt. Nothing rough or tough. Civilized and sweet.

Not that I expect anything else.

Certain thoughts have been milling around in my head for a couple of days. These aren't happy thoughts. These are things that I have had in there and boxed away, taped up, catalogued under unmentionable for a very long time. Dammit. And now, some spring cleaning appears to have been done, and the boxes are out of storage. Open even. Ready to be accounted for. Dammit. I would rather lick the cat's ass than deal with all of this. But licking the cat's ass wouldn't make all of it go away. So, I won't subject myself to that particular horror.

I keep reliving a very bad day. Very, very bad. I did something pretty much unforgivable in my book. And I've never gotten to the point where I could cooly appraise my actions and deal with the guilt. Better to wrap it in bubble wrap and put it in the box. So much tidier. If I get into it fully, will it ever end?

This is an evil thing. Memory. Maybe my Grandmother is the lucky one- as she loses hers, she has plenty of the good ones left. And she seems to have forgotten lots of the bad. I have lots of the good ones, but the bad ones appear in a flash once in a while. And I have to deal with them. It's pretty rough going, and I would do anything to get out of my own head. Guess that's not really an option. Neither is a week-long drunk. Because once I sober up, it's all still in there. I'm OCD enough (really, I am) that fixating on this kind of shit is part of the chemistry.

So, I'm putting on my helmet, flack jacket and picking up my trusty AK 47 and gonna wade into the breach. Fuckin A. Maybe after the battle, I'll get a tattoo. Betty Grable or Rita Hayworth? Or in my case, Gable or Grant? Hmmmmm.

And then there's the debate- do I bare my soul to the world, and achieve the absolution gained when making a confession? I think not. Gotta keep some secrets closely held. Just gotta. Besides, I can't think of any good that would come of exposing some of this stuff- it's just my own hard-earned personal little hell. Probably wouldn't phase another person.

Enough. I'm putting off the inevitable. Gotta go think.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Story to share

A friend told us this one.

Three year old son of a friend. We'll call him Jimmy. Friend thought it would be funny to tell Jimmy the following.

"Leave the apple butter alone, son." "Why?" "It makes your meat grow."

Mom starts to notice the apple butter disappearing from the fridge.

One day, she notices Jimmy with the apple butter jar in his hands, and his pants undone. "What are you doing with the apple butter, Jimmy?"

"Putting it on my meat. It makes it grow."

Now, I'm only hoping that since this was over 10 years ago, Jimmy isn't still putting his pecker in the apple butter. Or if he is, he keeps a separate, non-consumed jar.

Coasting to a stop

It's day one of my time off. No job. Some very promising prospects, but at least a week before anything tangible gets me out of the house.

I'm up at a relatively normal hour. No sense falling into bad habits- they will only make getting up and going to work difficult, nay, painful.

Swilling my tea at the computer...almost poetic.

I have long lists of things to accomplish this week. And a long list of Tivoed movies to watch, including Double Indemnity, and some stuff from the 30s.

There are books to be read, and I plan to keep up the writing for a few hours every day. I am wondering if the writing will flow as well when I'm not stealing the hours from da man. I'm hoping. It'll say a lot if not.

Funny- it's been exactly one year, 9 days since I quit my job in Bozeman. And in that time I've had a job for only 3 months. Not exactly the gamble I had anticipated when we made the plunge.

Saddest of all is that there will probably be less for me to write about here now that I'm not exposed to the world and all of its silly people on a daily basis. I'll have to get inventive. I can totally DO this. I just know it.

Anyway, I think I'll run along and start by actually getting dressed before noon. All in the retention of good habits and all- no need to slouch around in a bathrobe all day. That's no way to attract the UPS guy! Nor is it a good way to keep the husband from straying. There are plenty of lovely young things in the big city just hankering for a piece of him! (Actually, he works in an office with one other guy, and doesn't seem to notice any other females with the sole exception of Kirsten Dunst. And I don't think she's in play here. If she was, I would respect her power and step aside. It would be the only sporting thing to do.)

I've also gotta think of better nomenclature for Spouse. that kind of has always grated on me. I have just tried so hard to retain his privacy, and his privates. So, I'll work on that too. The privacy thing- I'll not be sharing racy tales here, my friends.

So, mes amies, I'll be back later, no doubt, with fanciful tales of talking squirrels and neighborhood quarrels. We'll see what I can dredge up.

Thursday, October 06, 2005


I am not good at sitting in an office all day doing nothing and communicating with no one. That's all. Counting the hours left...

The women's restroom on this floor smells like a fucking cat box. And it's NOT my fault! It was like that when I went in there.

I think I'm going to let my subscription to Vanity Fair lapse. It bores me. Seriously. I've really gotten over the preoccupation with the rich and fabulous. It kind of grates on my nerves now. I'm SO much above all of that...smirk...

Throwing away my favorite red shoes last night was liberating. I will not wear shoes that make my feet hurt any more. Too old for that shit. And I don't want bent toes like my Grandma. They hurt.

Kitties who tread on the stove while it's hot learn difficult lessons very quickly. But thier little pink paws stink afterwards. And they're a little jumpy.

I can recommend The Dawn Patrol, 1938. Interesting anti-war movie with a surprisingly nuanced performance by Errol Flynn. And a lovely young David Niven (makes Jude Law seem like such the rip off artist).

I am memorizing the names of the shipping container companies at the docks. Scary. I can recite them if I want. Does that make me an official Seattleite? Or a wanna-be teamster?
I am officially a Yenta. What can I say- it's all done with love.

Wikipedia is really cool. Someday I might even try to write an entry. If you haven't gone there yet, check it out.

Corporate silliness

Yeah. So my job ends on Friday. I'll be re-assigned in a week or so, so I'm not panicking about a return to the summer of my discontent. But it's kind of goofy the way this all turned out.
I'm also waiting to hear back from the group I interviewed with almost 2 weeks ago. I am pretty solid about feeling that I am in the running- I just think that since they travel a lot, and the department is very shor-handed, the new hire got pushed into the background. I just get to chill about it for a while. I have left the appropriate messages, and don't think it's cool to pester at this point. And I'm getting a downright que sera sera attitude about the whole thing.
So I did really like this job. The manager I had has left the company- he was pretty cool- but not a great manager on some levels. He threw me into some really stressful situations without any background. Luckily I am like cat- land on feet. He is an ardent member of the "managment under duress" school. Like it or not. And it ate him up. He was always under the gun. No calm center. I wish him well at his next job. It sounds like a very different baliwick.
According to the internal website, I report to a guy who has yet to speak to me. Oh- I take that back- he has said, "excuse me" when he almost bumped into me. Twice. And I said hello to him a couple of days ago, and he responded in kind. I just find it ironic that I'm supposed (on paper at least) to be a direct reportee. Silly.
For the rest of the week I sit in an office (with walls!), my usual cubicle has been re-allocated. I wait for the 2 women who I am supposed to train to get the chance to come and see me about stuff. So far it's been pretty sparse. I don't think it's a priority for them. I dunno. But their clock of having me as a resource is ticking. I'll expound further sometime about the personalities. Not yet, my little dumplings. I'm not out the door yet, so it's not the smartest thing to do.
Anyway, I'm trying really hard not to surf the web too much, not to spend any money on the web while surfing, and not to seem too obviously detached from actual work. Lookin busy!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Questions du jour-

Why does my cat have poodle/brown tears? It's icky.
Has the scary lady at the bus stop who bitches about the lateness of every bus, every fucking day, know that I am avoiding her? (I can only have that discussion once. Then I want to tell her to shut the hell up and drive, already. I don't fucking give a damn if her boss dislikes her being late because of the bus. Deal with it! It's fucking mass transit!)
Will I ever have time to watch the HBO Rome miniseries? Sure would be nice...sigh...
How long will it take me to get in proper shape if I start today?
Does Kombucha tea make you stay awake at night?
Why must all 4 kitties sleep on top of me? Is this the "stealing your breath" plot?
Would they remember and hate me for life if I dress them up for Halloween? I do have perfect costume would be cute...and maybe only a little disturbed...

And why did that man follow me home from the bus stop today? Should I pack heat?

Just getting by.

There was a discussion last week about evil. The nature of evil people, specifically. And whether or not redemption is possible. One of the people in the discussion was a self-proclaimed misanthrope. She claims to hate people. Just all of them. I personally think it's kind of sad for a 19 year old to have that kind of jaundiced view, but don't know her experiences, life story, nor do I want to spend much time analyzing it. I have my own issues to contend with, thanks anyway.

It made me think a bit. The most evil person I've ever met was a relative. I hated him. Honestly. I'm not exaggerating. And believe me, he really earned it. He tried his best to be nasty, brutish, and very unpleasant on numerous occasions. Yes, demon rum played a distinct role, but it was still a contentious relationship. I dreaded seeing him. I avoided holidays with him when I could. It was all difficult.

When he died, I felt a palpable sense of relief. I demanded to see his body at the funeral home, mostly to confirm that he was dead. He wouldn't be mean to me ever again. He would keep his racist crap to himself, and not insult Spouse. He wouldn't insult my Dad. He wouldn't verbally attack me. It was over.

Then I watched the decline of his wife. I have always loved her very much. I am the closest to her in my generation. She was wonderful. She is becoming lost. We have basically discovered that she was losing herself before he died. It is horrible to watch.

Now for the redemption. I'm not the person to rattle off about forgiveness. I can hold the world's longest grudge, given the proper motivation. Just ask me about my 20 year high school reunion and the bitterness that runneth over, still. But now I re-evaluate my position on this most difficult man. Seems that he was operating at the end of his life on 20% blood flow to his brain. He was suffering, sick and old. He did all of the cleaning, cooking and laundry for them both. We didn't know. His logic synapses weren't functioning, or he might've said something to one of us about needing help. But he cared for her. We didn't know. It hurts me inside to think of how frightened he must've been for her. To think of how hard it was for him. And for her. But to see her mind disintegrate by degree. I cannot go there for very long.

Do I love him? Hell no. He lost that long ago. Around my 12th year, to be precise. But he did teach me how to fish. He did show me how to build a house. He did take care of her as best as he could. Redemption? Let's call it a softening of attitude. An active adoption of forgiveness for many faults. A recognition that evil can change, given the proper motivation. In the meantime, I'll keep sending her postcards to remind her that I exist. Until she can't read them anymore. Which seems like the inevitable. Which kills something inside me.