Saturday, July 31, 2004

the best things in life really are free

...or, at least, are reasonably inexpensive.

It boggles my mind that it's almost August. July was such a blur. To celebrate the last day of July, we did nothing all day. We never left the house (well, never left our property anyway) and I didn't even get dressed and have a shower until almost 4 p.m. It felt great!! For the first time in ages and ages, I slept in until almost 10 a.m. I must have been seriously sleep deprived to do that!!

Mark and I basically vegged out on the sofa all day, watching stuff on DVD and being lazy. We are expecting some company at the beginning of next week so there are lots of things to do around the house, both inside and outside, but we didn't do any of them today. It call all wait until Monday. Besides, it was too bloody hot to do much more than sit in front of the air conditioner and watch season four of the Simpsons.

One thing that made me smile today: Hanging out with Mark all day. Anymore, we don't often seem to get to do that. It was so nice to just lay around like third base and not go anywhere or do anything in particular. It really made me feel better for the first time in over a week.

Friday, July 30, 2004

saw the light

I think that I will survive this darned cold. For the first time in days, I feel like I'm getting better instead of worse.

Despite my best intentions of getting to bed early last night, we actually stayed up for the whole of Kerry's speech. I thought it was really good, although it wasn't as exciting as some of the stuff I'd seen earlier in the week (mainly Al Sharpton's -- but how can anyone compete with that??). I don't honestly know when we've watched as much C-Span but we really enjoyed their coverage. Even though we don't like Bush & Co., I'm looking forward to watching the GOP convention next month. It should be interesting to hear the lies they will spin in the wake of the DNC, if nothing else.

Today was my last day at work for a week and I actually got a lot of stuff done. Now, I'm fairly certain that there are some things I forgot but, to the best of my knowledge, and given how messed up my head has been this week this is saying something, I think I got all of the "important" stuff off of my desk. When I get back to work in a week and a bit, we'll be hitting a particularly busy 2 week period but once that's behind us, I may actually be able to figure out a routine for this new job of mine. Having everyone sort of settled into their new offices / desks has certainly helped a lot. It's been months and months (like since this time last year if I'm honest) since I've felt settled at work. Thank someone for small mercies huh??

One thing that made me smile today: Because Monday is a holiday here, the office was next to dead today. Fortunately, the VP's designate (he's on holidays right now) told us all to leave early today. It was hotter than blue blazes and I was pretty pooped so I was happy to do as I was told!! It was a very nice way to start my little holiday.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

still sick

This cold is still hanging on. I have felt rotten for days now. I'm over-tired and can't breathe and have been losing my voice intermittently. No fun.

The tired and the cold is really getting to me and I had an episode of uncontrollable crying this evening. I was hungry but too tired to eat. Wanted to breathe properly and couldn't. All day today was just one weird thing after another and the end result was me in a puddle by the end of it.

At this moment I don't even think I'll be able to stay up for Kerry's speech tonight. All I can think about right now is sleep.

One thing that made me smile today: Fortunately, I only have one more day of work left this week, tomorrow, and then I'm off for a week and a bit. The bit is an extra day at the end, the Monday. With this coming Monday being the civic holiday, I thought that I would treat myself to the extra day on the end. By the time it rolls around I'll probably need it.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

less breathing, more television watching

I've got a wicked head cold.  I feel like hammered crap.   Even though I'm sick, we've stayed up late tonight.  We're totally wired to the c-span coverage of the Democratic National Convention.  I cannot, for the life of me, understand why anyone would watch it on CNN.   We've been flicking in and out of CNN's coverage, just to quickly glance at what they are showing when the speeches are happening.  The coverage is horrible and they aren't showing much of anything at all.

Last night I fell asleep immediately after Jimmy Carter's excellent speech.  We were tivo'ing pretty much the whole thing.  When I was getting ready for work this morning, the rebroadcast was on and I got to see Clinton's speech.  I totally should have gone to bed hours ago but I couldn't turn it off.   I kept thinking, "after Howard Dean, I'll go to sleep...after Barack Obama I'll go to sleep...after Ron Reagan Jr.... you see where this is going.  I'm sure I'll be paying for it in the morning but I couldn't help myself.

One thing that made me smile today:  It's not a thing actually.  Today a person made me smile.  She's 12 years old and her name is Illana Wexler and she spoke at the convention tonight.   Here's a bit of what she said tonight, it'll make you smile too I'm sure:  "Our vice president, he said a really bad word.  If I said that word ... I would get a time out. I think he should be given a time out."

Monday, July 26, 2004

totally pooped

I find that you can't appreciate how long the night really is, until you can't sleep.  I guess I took one too many cold pills yesterday because I was up pretty much all night last night.  I was bone tired in the afternoon but didn't want to let myself sleep because I was afraid that I'd not be able to sleep once night arrived.   Last night I was very tired but it didn't seem to matter.  I don't think I actually fell asleep until after midnight (and I went to bed at 9:30) and then I slept for less than an hour.  This went on all night long.  My cold doesn't feel any worse than it did yesterday but I didn't get any rest either. 

One thing that made me smile today:  I found this in my comments from last week and it totally made me smile.  I love my brother, he's totally cool!

Sunday, July 25, 2004

my brain feels fuzzy

I am reminded of a poem I learned in elementary school.  It was probably in the 3rd or 4th grade and it goes:

It doesn't breathe,
It doesn't smell,
It doesn't feel,

So very well.

I am disgusted,
With ny nose,
The only thing it does,

Is blows.

Having a cold both sucks and blows.  Seeing how my brain is friend, I decided to hope on the movie meme bandwagon.  Better late than never huh??  I actually stole it from Chuck and I'm not sure if these are supposed to be bad movies or not.  I'm thinking not because some of them are quite good.  Part of the deal for this one is that you're supposed to add three to the bottom.  The three I've added are just kind of cheesey and films I remember from when I was in high school / college.   The films I've seen have been bolded, have fun:

01. Trainspotting
02. Shrek
03. M
04. Dogma
05. Strictly Ballroom
06. The Princess Bride
07. Love Actually
08. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings
09. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
10. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
11. Reservoir Dogs
12. Desperado
13. Swordfish
14. Kill Bill Vol. 1
15. Donnie Darko
16. Spirited Away
17. Better Than Sex
18. Sleepy Hollow
19. Pirates of the Caribbean
20. The Eye
21. Requiem for a Dream
22. Dawn of the Dead
23. The Pillow Book
24. The Italian Job
25. The Goonies
26. Baseketball
27. The Spice Girls Movie (Spice World)
28. Army of Darkness
29. The Color Purple
30. The Safety of Objects
31. Can’t Hardly Wait
32. Mystic Pizza
33. Finding Nemo
34. Monsters Inc.
35. Circle of Friends
36. Mary Poppins
37. The Bourne Identity (both!)
38. Forrest Gump
39. A Clockwork Orange
40. Kindergarten Cop
41. On The Line
42. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
43. Final Destination
44. Sorority Boys
45. Urban Legend
46. Cheaper by the Dozen The original.
47. Fierce Creatures
48. Dude, Where’s My Car
49. Ladyhawke
50. Ghostbusters
51. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
52. Back to the Future
53. An Affair To Remember
54. Somewhere In Time
55. North By Northwest
56. Moulin Rouge
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
58. The Wizard of Oz
59. Zoolander
60. A Walk to Remember
61. Chicago
62. Vanilla Sky
63. The Sweetest Thing
64. Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead
65. The Nightmare Before Christmas
66. Chasing Amy
67. Edward Scissorhands
68. Adventures of Priscilla: Queen of the Desert
69. Muriel’s Wedding
70. Croupier
71. Blade Runner
72. Cruel Intentions
73. Ocean’s Eleven (the original)
74. Magnolia
75. Fight Club
76. Beauty and The Beast
77. Much Ado About Nothing
78. Dirty Dancing
79. Gladiator
80. Ever After
81. Braveheart
82. What Lies Beneath
83. Regarding Henry
84. The Dark Crystal
85. Star Wars
86. The Birds
87. Beaches
88. Cujo
89. Maid In Manhattan
90. Labyrinth
91. Thoroughly Modern Millie
92. His Girl Friday
93. Chocolat
94. Independence Day
95. Singing in the Rain
96. Big Fish
97. The Thomas Crown Affair
98. The Matrix
99. Stargate
100. A Hard Day’s Night
101. About A Boy
102. Jurassic Park
103. Life of Brian
104. Dune
105. Help!
106. Grease
107. Newsies
108. Gone With The Wind
109. School of Rock
110. TOMMY
111. Yellow Submarine
112. From Hell
113. Benny & Joon
114. Amelie
115. Bridget Jones’ Diary
116. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
117. Heavenly Creatures
118. All About Eve
119. The Outsiders
120. Airplane!
121. The Sorcerer
122. The Crying Game
123. Hedwig and the Angry Inch
124. Slap Her, She’s French
125. Amadeus
126. Tommy Boy
127. Aladdin
128. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
129. Snatch
130. American History X
131. Jack and Sarah
132. Monkey Bone
133. Rocky Horror Picture Show
134. Kate and Leopold
135. Interview with the Vampire
136. Underworld
137. Truly, Madly, Deeply
138. Tank Girl
139. Boondock Saints
140. Blow Dry
141. Titanic
142. Good Morning Vietnam
143. Save the Last Dance (the original not the new one)
144. Lost in Translation
145. Willow
146. Legend
147. Van Helsing
148. Troy
149. Nine Girls and a Ghost
150. A Knight’s Tale
151. Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey
152. Beetlejuice
153. E.T.
154. Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone
155. Spaceballs
156. Young Frankenstein
157. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
158. American President
159. Bad Boys
160. Pecker
161. Pink Floyd: The Wall
161. X-Men
162. Sidewalks of New York
163. The Children of Dune
164. Beyond Borders
165. Life Is Beautiful
166. Good Will Hunting
167. Run Lola Run
168. Blazing saddles
169. Caligula
170. The Transporter
171. Better Off Dead
172. The Abyss
173. Almost Famous
174. The Red Violin
175. Contact
176. Stand and Deliver
177. Clueless
178. William Shakespeare’s Romeo+Juliet
179. Dangerous Laisions
180. I Am Sam
181. The Usual Suspects
182. U-571
183. Capricorn One
184. The Little Shop of Horrors (the one with Jack Nicholson)
185. Die Hard
186. The Flamingo Kid
187. Night of the Comet
188. Point Break
189. Chatterbox
190. Secretary
191. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
192. American Beauty
193. Pulp Fiction
194. What About Bob
195. Roger and Me
196. Fahrenheit 9/11
197. Bowling for Columbine
198. The Professional (aka Leon)
199. The Fifth Element
200. La Femme Nikita
201. Heathers
202. Bull Durham
203. The Scorpion King
204. The Thin Blue Line
205. Do the Right Thing
206. Lady From Shanghai
207.  Absolute Beginners
208.  Nice Girls Don't Explode 
209. The Warriors

One thing that made me smile today:   Fake (ie SprawlMart), inexpensive dristan like pills.   As I mentioned earlier, last night, I started feeling really crappy.  We had used up almost all of the cold medicine stuff on his cold and I was too pooped to go out for anything last night so we ventured out to SprawlMart this morning.   It actually wasn't too busy there as it was mid-morning and at this time of the month, not too many folks who frequent this particular establishment have much cash hanging around.  I was happy to see that the cold pills I was after were on sale and I also got a package of Fisherman's Friends in a tin.  I really hate how you can't reseal their package.  Now I have a cool little tin to keep my cough drops in.  Thank heavens for small favours huh??

Saturday, July 24, 2004

I think I'm sick

Some folks who know me well would say that yes, indeed, I am sick.  I have a sick sense of humour and am often called a "sick puppy."  Sick senses of humour aside, I am pretty sure that I have Mark's cold.  We're almost out of cold meds but I found a Neo Citran and I'm sipping on it right now.  It was like, as soon as I put my fork down from dinner tonight, I was sick.  I couldn't even do the dishes.  I just put the kettle on, made a Neo and crawled up here.  Not fun.

Did you ever play with Tarot cards??  When I was a teenager, my friend Tina had a deck and we used to use a book she had to read each other's cards.  I've often thought about getting a deck, for fun, but they are kind of pricey and, in all honesty, I don't know that I'd actually use them much.   Seeing how I'm a little brain dead and tired from this cold, I found this Tarot card quiz, enjoy:

The Sun Card
You are the Sun card. The light of the Sun reveals
all. The Sun is joyful and bright, without fear
or reservation. The childish nature of the Sun
allows you to play and feel free. Exploration
can truly take place in the light of day when
nothing is hidden. The Sun's rays fill you with
energy so that you may live life to its
fullest, milking pleasure out of each day. Such
joy and energy can bring wealth and physical
pleasure. To shine in the light of day is to
have confidence, to soak up its rays is to feel
the freedom of a child. Image from: Stevee

Which Tarot Card Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

One thing that made me smile today:  My mum & dad.  This morning, I woke up kind of early and Mark slept in really late.  Ordinarily, I would have woke him up around 8 or 8:30 a.m. (which is really sleeping in, in our house anyway).  This morning I let him sleep until around 10 a.m. because he was still getting over the cold he had all week.  He a lot of cold medication to get out of his system not to mention just plain old recharging his batteries after being so sick.   I got up and watched a little TV, cleaned the bathroom and started into the laundry.  Somewhere in the middle of it, my mum left me a phone message and they were going to come into town to see us and drop off some sewing she was doing for Joe and I.  They don't come in to see us too often, we usually go out to their place in the suburbs so it was a nice surprise to see them and I had just cleaned the bathroom so, yay!  Mum and I sat outside on the patio, sipping decaf and talking about my weed infested garden and sharing gossip about family members (heehee) while Mark and Dad and Joe visited inside.  Overall, it was a very pleasant morning and we had a great visit.

Friday, July 23, 2004


I'm not sure when or how it happened but about 20 minutes ago, my ring and middle fingers on my left hand started hurting like a son of a gun.  They actually feel sprained and are quite swollen looking right now.  It's the damned-est thing I've ever seen.    You know that feeling when someone pulls your fingers way back toward the back of your hand (like they are totally not supposed to do in nature??)?? That's how my fingers feel but I don't know how it happened.  It's okay though, they only hurt when I move them or try to do anything with them!

On the upside, my toe seems to be healed.  Work also seems to be getting settled down.  This week was pretty nuts what with all of the sorting out and cleaning up that was being done after the moves last week.  Hopefully things will keep improving.  For the first time in a long time, I actually feel like I accomplished a few things this week.   Everyone on our team is getting together to do some serious planning for the rest of the fiscal year.  It'll be good for everything I think because I'm pretty sure we're all in the same boat lately.  Recently, I've felt like I'm spending all of my time just reacting to things and I'm not able to map anything out.  I hate feeling like that, it's very unsettling.  I'm really quite organized in my work and this being all over the place, not feeling like I'm getting anything done feeling is just not sitting well with me.

One thing that made me smile today:  It's been incredibly hot and sticky all week at work.  Our offices are located in the basement of a 180 year old building so it gets quite damp and smelly down there at times.  I walked in to a colleagues' office this morning, expecting it to feel like a sauna (like it usually does) and instead I actually shivered as a beautiful million dollar breeze hit me in the face.  Nothing feels as good as clean air in your lungs after 12 after of breathing in the muggy gross stuff!

Thursday, July 22, 2004

can't a fat girl get a break?

Canadian Idol is just sucking crusty ass this year.  I actually voted for three different people last night, Kalan, Teresa and Jacob (anyone who wears a fifties-style preppy outfit, a lip ring, and sings "Put Your Head on My Shoulder" deserves my vote!). 

Jacob sings

A couple of weeks ago, I was really not sure if I was going to bother watching the top 10 at all.  Once they eliminated our man Brock, my heart wasn't in it, really.  I was happy that Kalan and Teresa had made it but overall, I wasn't as into it as I remember being last year.  I got over myself though and broke down and watched the top 10 last night though.  I totally HATE Shane (he seems to be a cocky lunk-head), Manoah (I know she's a school teacher but she can't sing that well and is getting skankier every week) and Jason (okay, he looks like Ricky Martin and loves Bryan Adams, we get it, sheesh!!).  I do have a soft spot for Brandy Callahan though.  She can sing the shit out any song she tries.  Her particular talent really seemed suited toward gospel and R&B but she honestly gave me goosebumps when she sang (and that hasn't happened since I first heard Toya Alexis sing last summer).  I felt sick for her when she got voted off this week.  Shane or Manoah totally deserved it but Brandy, no way!  I guess a fat girl can't cut a break on the Idol.  I only hope that the voting public pulls it's collective head out of their giant ass next week.  If we're not careful, Jason Greely could win!

One thing that made me smile today:  we have a beautiful brown bunny in our backyard.  Now, if I actually had a vegetable garden in my yard, I would probably not be so happy to see a bunny munching on stuff but we don't so I am.  When I got home from work tonight, Mark's dad mentioned that he'd seen one out in the yard in the afternoon.  It's been a long time since I've seen one out there.  There used to be lots of bunnies around but I figured that the coyotes that live on the Alcan property (a couple of blocks from here) had been making dinner of them or something.  Mark and I were downstairs watching tv after dinner tonight and I noticed this beautiful brown rabbit eating all of our pink clover (have I mentioned that our lawn needs to be cut).  He was there for a very long time.  I guess because we don't have dog or cat pee or poop out there, and because we don't use pesticide, he probably figured it was a safe spot to have buffet.  Whatever the reason, he seemed really happy and I enjoyed watching him hippity-hop around the yard, white fluffy tail and all!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

less than excited

Tonight is the first of the top 10 competitions for Canadian Idol.   I have to say, I'm not overly thrilled about it but I guess I'll watch it anyway...just to see what happens.  Mark and I are really really digging Kalan and Teresa and hope they do well.   We have pretty much been cheering for them all along, well them and Brock (who got booted out 2 weeks ago).  I'd love to see either of them go all the way, we'll see what happens.

There is one woman in the top 10 who is a student here in town.  She's actually from BC but she's going to school at Queen's so the Whig is following her just like they did Ryan last summer.  She's "okay" I guess.  You can tell that she's had musical theatre experience but to me, she's just "okay."  I think that the Whig would love for her to go the distance because then they could sell more papers and build up this whole Kingston/Canadian Idol thing to a ridiculous level.  I don't think it's gonna happen but what the hell do I know?

One thing that made me smile today:  My big salad.  Tonight we went out for dinner with Joe.  He likes to take us out once a week.  Anyway, I had the most delicious BIG salad for supper.  It was Montana's version of a cobb salad but I had them substitute the cheese in it for extra tomato and it was really yummy and totally filling.  Yay!!

Sunday, July 18, 2004

sunflowers and rhubarb

Last weekend, I finally put some stuff into the ground that my mum had given me.  I was pretty sure that it was going to die because I'd been neglecting it for so long.  Don't get me wrong, I watered it and everything but I just hadn't cleared a spot away to transplant the stuff and July is not exactly primo-planting time in this neck of the woods.  I'm happy to report that I found a little sprout on the rhubarb and the sunflowers seem to be doing well.  I'll never have a garden like my mum's but at least I can keep what I do have, alive... for a little while anyway.

Because it was hot today and I'm a little brain-dead and bored, here is a fun fun quiz:

take the antisocial test.
and go to because laura's feeling social.

One thing that made me smile today:  Sleeping in.   Money can not buy the best things in life, like sunflowers blooming or sleeping in on Sundays.  A lazy lie-in always makes me smile!!

Saturday, July 17, 2004

snail's paces

So I didn't exactly accomplish nothing today but what I did do, I did very slowly.

It was sunny again today and that combined with the humidity made it hellahot.   We took coolers and ice packs with us when we went for groceries.  It was a good thing we did too.  The places we shop at aren't that far from where we live but things were wilting on the walk from the store to the car so they definitely wouldn't have survived the ride home in the steamy hot trunk without some kind of protection.  Yuck-a-rama!!

I had a bunch of cleaning type stuff to get done around the house.  Even in the air conditioning it was sweaty gross work.  I mean, I was glad that I got it all done but it was not as pleasant an experience as it could have been.

One thing that made me smile today:   Low fat ice cream sandwiches and TiVo.  After my work was done, I parked in front of the tv in my bedroom, had a lovely ice cream sandwich and watched a bunch of stuff we'd recorded last week.   If I had a cottage to go to, I probably would have been outside or in the water enjoying the heat.  Seeing how we don't have a cottage, ice cream and air conditioning are excellent alternatives, imho anyway!!

Friday, July 16, 2004

Work was absolutely insane today.  It's been sort of a nutty week actually.  Taking Monday and Tuesday off seemed like a good idea at the time but now I wonder.  Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed the extra long weekend but I've been paying for the past couple of days.  Between the office moves on Wednesday and then spending two days trying to meet publication deadlines and get stuff done on top of that while putting stuff away/unpacking and nursing a very sore toe (yes it still hurts!!), I don't feel like I've accomplished much this week.

My game plan for the weekend is to do very little or nothing at all.  In this heat and humidity, I don't think that will be much of a problem.
One thing that made me smile today:  I was so happy to see the sun come out earlier.  Even in the summer, when the weather is breezy and warm, not seeing the sun can just make you feel like crap.   It's been overcast and gloomy for days now.  Sunshine on a Friday is like icing on a cake!! 

Thursday, July 15, 2004

wimpy wimpy wimp wimp

My foot still hurts. It looks better than it did last night but it's hurting like nobody's business. I am also totally paranoid that I'm going to hit it again. I'd wear proper shoes but can't have anything touching it so I have to wear sandals and expose my sore toe to all the harsh elements. Not fun!

Things are getting settled here at work. I'm really liking my new space but I still haven't had a chance to put things away properly. I find that it takes me a while to adjust to a space before I can decide where to put things. In my experience, since I've been working with this organization, just about the time I get everything sorted out, I'll be asked to move to a different office.

Oh, on the interesting local news tidbits front, I read an update about "Block D" today.  Block D, for those of you outside of the Kingston area, is a largish parcel of waterfront property in the heart of tourist row.  It's the last decent sized undeveloped piece of waterfront real estate downtown and developers and the city have been fighting for years and  years over what will be built there.  See, good old Kingston is a bit of a hysterical, err, historical site and you can't do too much without the historical society's approval.  A couple of weeks ago, anti-poverty groups created a tent city on the Block D property.  Homelessness is at an all-time high here in the Limestone City and erecting the tent city is really shining a spotlight (in a big way) on a massive problem.  Anyway, in this morning's paper, there was an announcement about a new development on Block D.  The City finally approved a project and I'm sure it's no coincidence that it's happening while the protest is going on.  What better excuse is there to clear out the homeless folks than a new building project.  The whole thing makes me sick. The city council should be ashamed of itself.

One thing that made me smile today: Air conditioning.  I loves me some air conditioning.  Now, I don't like the house to be freezing cold or anything but I like to be able to breathe.  Today wasn't so bad but this week, overall, has been really muggy.  The air feels thick enough to see at times.  Lucky for me, we live in a little tiny town.  I can't imagine how much the air quality would diminish if we were in a huge ass city.  I've spent time in the summer in large metropolitan areas and I don't like it much.  Call me silly but I don't like cleaning my glasses at the end of the day and finding a bunch of black soot on my tissue.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

moving right along

We moved our offices again today. Today has been the most humid day of the summer so far, of course.

We work in the basement of a really old building, there are dehumidifiers everywhere so I'm sure you can imagine how damp it is at the best of times. Today we had the doors open, the windows open, dozens of people were coming and going and they were all sweating and creating more moisture. It actually felt like it might be raining in basement a couple of times. Fortunately, the worst of it is behind us now. Hopefully we won't have to move again anytime soon. It's just not fun anymore.

The company who does our moves loans us these huge wooden packing crates. Of course, when they move them, sometimes they just get dumped wherever they can find a spot. My office mate had one plunked smack dab in the middle of her cubicle. I was helping her move it out of the path of traffic and dragged the corner of it over my big toe, pulling part of the nail with it. It didn't actually hurt too much when I did it, it just bled and bled and bled. By the time I got home, my whole foot was throbbing and I sat with it elevated for most of the evening. Yes I am a wimp, sue me!! Anyway, after I soaked it and removed this huge chunk of broken nail, it felt much better. It's still sore and it's really ugly looking but at least it'll start to heal now.

Unfortunately, my injury has wrecked my Queer Eye Pedicure. That's right, QEP!! I've started tivo'ing Queer Eye and am totally addicted to the Fab 5. I just love them so much, especially Carson. He reminds me of this friend of mine who is particularly pushy and kind of bitchy. Now, I don't think he's pushy and bitchy but there is something about him that reminds me of her. Anyway, on Sundays, I've taken to giving myself a pedicure while watching Queer Eye. It's a lot of fun and very relaxing and my toes always turn out really nice when I'm being inspired by the Fab 5.

One thing that made me smile today: My new desk. I have a huge (I mean massive) cubicle. It's like a small office and it's really lovely. There is much more surface space for spreading things out, I have a window with a deep sill, I have drawers that lock and cupboards that lock. It's very spiffy. Unfortunately, I didn't have any time today to put things where they should be so stuff is just shoved into corners willy-nilly. Hopefully once I get past my deadline this week, I'll have some time to spiff it up a bit. It's very nice!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

every day is like sunday

Today is the last day of our little mini-break. Earlier today, Mark was finishing up a wiring project that he'd started last weekend when he stabbed himself in the finger, actually it was his thumb. It was bleeding pretty heavy, as fingers and toes tend to do and it put an end to his wiring for the day. Because of his injury, we didn't do too much any anything at all this afternoon. Joe even offered to take us out for dinner so he had a break from cooking. You never notice how much you use your thumbs until you injure one of them.

The nice thing about this long weekend was that we actually had a rest. When we were booked off a couple of weeks ago, we didn't stop. I was glad that we were getting stuff done around the house but sometimes, you just need a break. I'm sure that work will be insane tomorrow (because we're moving office again) but right now, I feel rested!

One thing that made me smile today: Six Feet Under, Season Two on DVD. The other day I was chatting with Mark's dad about Six Feet Under and he mentioned that he'd seen an ad for the DVD on the back cover of his bible, TV Guide. I said, "yeah, I have season one but I'm kind of broke right now so season two will have to wait." It wasn't me fishing around, rather it was a statement of my finances this month. Anyway, he got it for me today. What a sweetheart huh?!!??

Monday, July 12, 2004

simply fabulous!

I had a terrific day off. There is something wonderfully decadent about having a weekday off from work and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

Today I spent the late morning/early afternoon with my former boss. She's also a very good friend and we've not seen each other in ages. It had been so long in fact, that we exchanged birthday gifts this afternoon (mine is May 13 and hers is June 5 - is that pathetic or what??). The weather was really warm today but not muggy so we sat outside on her lovely deck and had a terrific visit. It's a big adjustment when you're used to seeing someone every day at work to go to only seeing them once in a while. We've both been pretty busy recently too so we've not even talked on the phone much. After today we have both vowed to not let this happen again and we've already made a date to see each other again next week. I can't wait!

Tonight after dinner, Mark and I were feeling lucky so we took a trek down to the casino in Gananoque. We stopped when we were $12.75 up. We'd both been down $20 at one point and wanted to leave with at least a couple of bucks more than we walked in with. It was fun although the crowd tonight was pretty geriatric. We don't get down there very often and we usually have a good time when we go. I think if we went more often, we probably wouldn't enjoy it as much!!

Stolen from Bev:

20 Questions to a Better Personality

Wackiness: 96/100
Rationality: 78/100
Constructiveness: 106/100
Leadership: 82/100

You are a WRCL--Wacky Rational Constructive Leader. This makes you a golden god. People gravitate to you, and you make them feel good. You are smart, charismatic, and interesting. You may be too sensitive to others reactions, especially criticism. Your self-opinion and mood depends greatly on those around you.

You think fast and have a smart mouth, is a hoot to your friends and razorwire to your enemies. You hold a grudge like a brass ring. You crackle.

Although you have a leader's personality, you often choose not to lead, as leaders stray too far from their audience. You probably weren't very popular in high school--the joke's on them!

You may be a rock star.

One thing that made me smile today: My birthday gift from Tam. She gives the best gifts. They are usually things that I can use for the house but that are gorgeous and decorative. She gave me a lovely stepping stone for my garden. It is square has three sunflowers on it. I think I'll put it in the little garden at the back where I planted (of all things) sunflowers. She also gave me a beautiful green ceramic container that you can burn these gel things in. I've never seen them before but apparently, when you burn the gel stuff, it keeps the bugs away. It'll be super useful too, the mosquitoes have taken over our backyard at the moment!!

Sunday, July 11, 2004

nitty grit dirt teeth

My teeth are totally gritty right now. I'm pretty sure that I inhaled a couple of mouth fulls of dirt today. That's right, mark your calendars folks, I finally got off my lazy ass and did that planting in the garden that I'd been avoiding.

Around 1 p.m., I went out back and pulled all of my weeding and planting gear out of the shed: wheel barrow, rake, shovel, bucket 'o small tools, plant food, etc., etc. I started raking the area where I would be planting the sunflowers but it was so damned hot that I couldn't do more than a few minutes. It was that hot here today. It wasn't humid and, truth be told, if you could sit in a shady spot and sip a tall cool glass of something, it was a gorgeous summer day. Unfortunately, the ground was baked and it was just too warm for work.

Rather than sit on my duff at home, I headed out to my folks' place for a quick visit and some mending. My mum is the world's best mender / sewer / seamstress. She rocks the Kasbah, totally. Last year, she made Mark a really nice vest for work. It's made of cream coloured cotton and she customized the pockets to hold all of his cab driver gear. A few days ago, part of it just disintegrated. My mum was able to repair it though and it looks fabulous. I could have done an "okay" job on it if my sewing machine had a zig zag but it doesn't. My sewing machine works very well but it's 50 year old technology (I inherited my nana's sewing machine and I wouldn't part with it for anything in the world). I totally expected to have to leave the vest with mum for a few days but she just went into the sewing room and fixed it up while we had a gossip. She rocks!

When I got home, it was still too hot to work so I flaked out on my bed to read back issues of Shape magazine and watch Queer Eye. Inspired by the Fab 5, I got a big bottle of water and went out back to finally tackle this miniscule amount of gardening that needed doing. Miniscule my butt. It took me ages to do it (well, a couple of hours including breaks). My mother is also Queen Gardener Supreme and she had advised me to soak the ground before digging. It worked like a charm. I dug a big hole, ripped up a bunch of sod, and planted these sad little sunflowers that have been thriving on neglect in a pot on our patio. I couldn't believe how pot bound they were. I felt guilty about it but quickly got over it by soaking the living hell out of them and fertilizing them. I know that you're not really supposed to be planting stuff in July but if I keep them really wet over the next couple of weeks it should be okay. I also transplanted some rhubarb that is, I guess, a "heirloom" plant from our family. The original plant was grown in my nana's back garden. My mum has it in her garden, as do my aunt and uncle who live in my mum's home town. My other uncle has planted it in at least 2 other provinces as well so this rhubarb gets around! I hope that it bounces back now that it's been planted. It was looking pretty crappy but I've been assured that if the roots are in tact (which they appear to be), it should be okay. Keep your fingers crossed for me kids, hopefully I haven't abused them too badly and they'll thrive in our clay-like soil.

Right now, I can still feel the dirt in my teeth, and between my toes (word of advice people -- yeah, shut up I know I'm stupid), don't wear sandals to plant in. You'll definitely end up shovelling dirt onto your foot at some point and it won't be pretty. My skin is also crawling from bug bites, again. Here's hoping I don't have west nile, again.

One thing that made me smile today: Mark's dad. He sat out in the back yard while I was gardening this afternoon. Tonight he lit a yahrzeit candle for his mother and was, understandably, a little blue about it all. He really seemed to enjoy sitting outside and watching the birds and laughing at me digging stuff up. We had a nice chat about his mum and dad and about his childhood. We also talked a little about Mark's mum and some of their friends about vacations that they took and stuff that they liked to do. I'd heard most of the stories before but I could tell that he was enjoying telling them again by the way his face lit up when he spoke. Sometimes I know, the three of us can just get on each other's nerves. Today wasn't one of those days though and seeing how well we can all get along when we want to was so nice.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

simply saturday

You'd think that by now I'd have figured out a way to sleep on the weekends, wouldn't you?? Unfortunately, I'm not a staying-up-late type of girl anymore and I don't really drink either. I know that both of these things can help with the sleeping in thing. I was up at my normal time this morning and kept pretty much to my normal, work-day routine.

Right now, we're on a four-day weekend. It feels terrific. Although we promised ourselves that we weren't going to do much of anything at all, I ended up cleaning the entire upstairs of our house (including the bathroom - yuck!! I hate cleaning bathrooms!!) and doing four loads of laundry. The plan is for us to get anything that we have to do, out of the way today and tomorrow and then Monday and Tuesday will be devoted to relaxation....and maybe some gardening.

The garden really need some tlc. My mum gave us some plants, ages ago now, to transplant into our yard and we've not done it yet. They're both looking pretty pathetic but I think we can salvage them if we get them into the ground this weekend. I'm not sure why I have avoided doing it until now. Lazy I guess....oh wait, it's because we've been upto our eyeballs doing inside projects for the past dozen weekends. It will get done this weekend though, hopefully tomorrow, weather permitting. Actually, even if it rains (which I don't think it's supposed to), I can plant. It's a lot easier digging holes when the ground is wet than when it's baked and fried by the sun.

Doing errands this afternoon in the west end was miraculously easy. There was very little traffic and the stores weren't very busy. I guess everyone who would normally be out schlepping around was either at the cottage or at the buskers thing downtown. Personally, I like to avoid the buskers thing at all costs. I don't find that it's that entertaining at all, and it's generally pretty hokey. Unfortunately, if you need or want to do anything downtown on buskers weekend, it's pretty much impossible. Hot fun in the summertime huh??

One thing that made me smile today: Our back yard. We have a great backyard. It's kind of big without being huge enough to require a ride-on lawn mower (no matter what Mark says!!). Three sides of the back yard are covered with trees and bushes, providing great privacy. It feels like you're sitting in a private park when you're back there. To be honest, the trees and bushes at the bottom of the yard are over grown and kind of wild but, I like it. I like not being able to see our neighbours at.all. Tonight after dinner, we sat out back for a while, just enjoying the scenery and the gorgeous breeze that was blowing through there. I pretty much always love our little house but times like that make me really appreciate how lucky we were to find it!

Friday, July 09, 2004

where'd it go?

The week I mean. Yikes!! I was almost ready to leave work tonight and I remembered that we were moving offices again on Wednesday. I had to pull all of my crap out of the various corners of the space I've been working in and try to get it into some kind of order. When I left, it was most in a big pile on my desk. I'm not too worried though, thankfully, this time, I don't have far to move.

I have to say, I'm definitely going to have to reconsider calling my folks. Every time I call them anymore (or they call me), I get to hear about who died. When it's older folks and stuff, it's sad but not tragic. Sometimes though, it's just gut wrenching. Tonight I called my mum to get the scoop on my cousin. I noticed that she had changed her MSN handle to include "I've been given a promise ring" but she's never online when I'm at home and can chat (just when I'm at work and am busy) so I haven't been able to bug her to find out what's happening. When I called my mum to ask her, she told me that a guy I went to school with, someone from my class when I was in elementary school and who lived on the next street to us, had died on Wednesday. Apparently, he had been sick (cancer) for a while now. He's not someone I was close with in recent years. Actually, I couldn't tell you the last time I saw him. His mum was a real doll though. She was absolutely one of my favourite people in the whole world and she passed away a few years ago. They were a really lovely family and the whole thing is just tragic. It's just really weird to think about his poor sister (she's the same age as my younger brother) on her own now, with both of them gone. People our age aren't supposed to die. It feels really wrong and it's just breaking my heart. That's 2 people I've heard about, who were my age, in the past 2 weeks. Seriously, I gotta stop calling home!

One thing that made me smile today: It's the long weekend!! What?? It's not a long weekend for you?? I'm so sorry to hear that. In our house, it's a long weekend as Mark and I both have Monday and Tuesday booked off. I know that I was just off last week but technically, I only to take to 2 vacation days to have an entire week off (I was given one day for overtime and one day because...well just because!!). Anyway, because we don't have any big travel plans this summer, I decided that I would book off Monday and Tuesdays during Mark's "bad" week (he has a bad week about every 3rd week -- it's not really anything to do with him so much as it has to do with a certain toothless butthead dispatcher that no one gets along with and who makes everyone's lives miserable). We don't have anything planned really, and not much extra cash to do it with if we wanted to. Instead, we're going to chill out, hang around the house, get some stuff done in the yard and just generally enjoy the fruits of all of our previous weekends' labour. How can you not smile at that!!?

Thursday, July 08, 2004

I heart Yoko!!

In case you didn't know, and really you should because I say this a lot, I heart Yoko!! I have always had a deep respect for her. I think she's just the bees knees. In case you had any doubt, here's further proof:

Yoko Ono Makes Old Song Gay Friendly
By DAVID BAUDER, AP Television Writer

NEW YORK - Yoko Ono has joined the chorus in support of gay marriage by recording "Every Man Has a Man Who Loves Him," a gay-friendly version of a song she wrote nearly a quarter-century ago.

The song "Every Man Has a Woman Who Loves Him," included on her last album with John Lennon before he was killed in 1980, was also retooled into another version: "Every Woman Has a Woman Who Loves Her."

It's both a political statement and a tribute to an audience that has improbably made her a hit act in the dance clubs at age 71.

"I should think that people would be more interested in politics and all that is happening, rather than two lovebirds who are looking to wed," she said. "I think it's very nice that in an age when love is so scarce that people are willing to gamble on getting married."

Ono recently performed "Every Man Has a Man Who Loves Him" at a gay pride rally in New York and the song is moving up Billboard magazine's dance club charts.

One of her gay friends told her that his mother had invoked the title of Ono's old song — "Every Man Has a Woman Who Loves Him" — in an attempt to steer him toward heterosexuality, she said.

Ono, whose avant-garde music was often ridiculed by fans of Lennon and the Beatles, said that's given her a connection to the gay and lesbian community.

"I'm an outsider in many ways," she said in an interview at her home in Manhattan's Dakota building, "and I think that's what they tune into."

A spokesman for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center in New York said any gesture of support from a public figure is appreciated.

"If it were Britney Spears doing this would it have a larger connection? Sure," said Ector Simpson, the gay center's director of cultural programs. "Does it have some value? Yes."

Ono had some minor hits on the club scene in the early 1980s with "Walking on Thin Ice" and "Kiss Kiss Kiss." But in recent years she has successfully opened her back catalogue to the dance scene's hottest producers and remixers.

"Hell in Paradise," a remix of a song she originally recorded in 1986, is No. 5 on this week's dance music chart in Billboard magazine.

Asked if this success gives her some feeling of vindication, Ono replies — only half-jokingly — that "I thought I would get it 30 years ago."

"When you make a song, you don't think it's going to be a dud," she said. "You don't think it's going to be thrown in a trash can, which my records literally were initially."

Lennon's widow doesn't release her music now under the name Yoko Ono. Rather, the act is simply billed "ONO."

"I thought that there would be people who would warm up to `ONO' — not that old image of Ono and Lennon," she said. "It's great. It's almost like I'm reborn."
Scary Stuff

A cabbie was stabbed last night here in town. It was a guy who works for the same company Mark does and it was really scary. Apparently, he got a call to go to an apartment in, let's just say, not the best neighbourhood in Kingston. Two guys get into the cab and rob him at knife point. No problem right? The driver hands the cash over and radios the dispatcher to tell her that he's been robbed. The two FUBAR rejects then go back and start stabbing the guy. Nice huh?? I mean, he handed over the cash, why stab him?? After this happens, the driver again calls in to the stand and tells them that he's been stabbed. By this time, there are a bunch of city cops on the scene. They arrest the two guys, get the weapon and one of the losers rolls on the other. Fortunately, the driver was not seriously injured. He's in a lot of pain but he's been treated and released from the hospital.

The weird thing about it all is that not I'm entirely surprised. The last few days, when we've been out doing errands or traveling back and forth to work, both Mark and I have commented on how there must be some good crack in town. And I'm sorry, you can SO tell when there's a good shipment of rock in town. You can see folks staggering up the street in the middle of the day and not just in the "bad" part of town. You notice it all over the place. The crack stagger is very different from a drunk stagger. It's hard to explain but it is just different. GST rebate cheques were out this week so we assume that a lot of people had a few extra bucks to spend on the rock this week. These two guys who stabbed the cabbie last night, were so out of it that they called the taxi to their own house!

Note to crack-head potential robbers: If you're going to rob someone, don't pick someone who has a radio in his car and definitely don't do it on your own doorstep. You don't shit where you eat, figure it out!

One thing that made me smile today: My air-conditioned office. Recently, the heat has not been bothering me like it has in previous years. Today though, the humidity is making my head pound. I was in a meeting this morning for 90 minutes and the room had literally, no air at all. It took over an hour to get it to stop pounding again. I love the summer, don't get me wrong. Pretty as it is, sometimes living on the shores of one of the Great Lakes is not ideal. Not in July anyway.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Today I learned that someone on campus passed away. I don't know the circumstances but I do know that it was a woman, a member of staff. When I was told her name I went "what?!" I thought that this woman who died was someone who had lived up the street from us when I was a kid. On the way home, I called my mum to find out what had happened (because my mum is wicked connected to the grape vine for such matters) and she told me that I had her confused with someone else, same last night, different first name. It's a really uncommon last name though and the woman I knew as a kid does work on campus so it wasn't a crazy mistake to make. The weird thing about it is that I felt relieved when it turned out to be someone I didn't know. The relief lasted for a couple of seconds. It took me that long to realize that it was just as sad and tragic for her family, whether I knew them or not, and that for someone to die in the prime of their lives, suddenly, was just horrible. In the middle of this revelation, my mum told me that a friend's mother passed away suddenly, on Sunday. It seems like every other day recently, someone we know is dying. I hate this getting older shit. This stuff almost never happened 10 or 15 years ago.

Tonight is Canadian Idol night. For the second summer in a row, I'm totally digging the Idol. Tonight is the last night of the top 32. Our man Brock is up tonight. We've really liked him since the first time we saw him and I'd like to see him go the distance. So far, I have no disagreement with the folks who have been picked for the top 10. Last year, it seemed like the folks who were voting had their heads safely stored inside their own asses. Some of the folks who got into the top 10 last summer sucked ass in a BIG way. This year's crop of singers does seem much better than last year. One of the nice things about not liking the kind of music that the Idol-wannabees perform is that you can be very objective about the competition. Unfortunately, the bad performances have not been bad enough to be amusing. I really miss WB Superstar. I totally loved Jo Jo and Mario and miss them a lot. The other day, we heard the theme song from Footloose somewhere (over a sound system in a store I think). Mark and I both looked at each other, smiled and said, "I miss Jo Jo." Forever more, Footloose is Jo Jo's song!

One thing that made me smile today: Mark went back to work today. Due to a bunch of weird circumstances with the guy he's been working for, he's not been able to work since before Canada Day (he actually took the holiday Thursday off voluntarily but was off the road on Friday, Monday and Tuesday through no fault of his own). He's been driving cab for 3 years now. For the last 14 months or so, he's been driving for this guy who lives around the corner. It had been a good / bad situation. The good part was that the guy lived in the neighbourhood so Mark was able to walk from our house to where the cab was parked in like, 4 minutes and the guy who owned the cab (Mr. F), wasn't a hardass. The bad part was that Mr F. isn't a hardass. He'll spend money on the car but only when his back was up against the wall and then, only the bare minimum that he could get away with. Because I can be cheap about things, this makes sense to me on some levels but, this car itself is on it's last legs. When forced to do so, Mr. F. has been throwing good money after bad to keep it on the road almost the entire time Mark's been driving it. Fortunately for him, Mark's an excellent driver and he's nursed the car along. During May and June though, the car started to die. You know that kind of slow, painful death that cars have? One day the brakes go, the next day the steering, etc...etc...etc... Mr. F. does not get the idea of "speculate to accumulate" it seems. He'd been telling Mark for a while that he was going to replace the car with a new vehicle. This never happened though. Rather than replace it, he kept repairing it. The money he put into the car to get it safety'd in May and pay for all the repairs he's been doing could have been used for a down payment on a new car and he'd be making money hand over fist. If he had bought a new car, Mark has a buddy, another driver, who would drive nights on it (Mark drives days) and between the two of them, it would never be off the road. As it's been for a few months now, he can't find anyone to drive it nights so it's been parked a lot. Anyway, on Sunday night after dinner, we took a walk down to Mr. F.'s to find out if it had been repaired. Turns out, Mr. F. decided to take the car off the road for the summer but he hadn't bothered to call Mark to tell him this. Mr. F. had been vacillating for a week about the decision. If he'd made a decision the week before, Mark could have had a car lined up for Monday morning and not missed a beat. As it was, it took him Monday and Tuesday this week to get a ride. I was a little annoyed. Mark was too. Not because Mark had to find a new car to drive, but because Mr. F. didn't say anything for a week. Mr. F.'s big problem is his indecisive manner. It can be really frustrating at times. So today Mark's back at work and the guy he's working for now, Mr. H., seems cool. Mark's happy to be back at work and I'm happy too. I'm happy because he's happy and I'm happy because neither of us will be worrying about money like we've been the past couple of days. You can tell yourself all you want, that it's just a couple of days and it'll all work out but it is still there. On the whole though, so far, so good (touch wood)!

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

is something bad better than nothing at all?

Once again, I'm sitting in front of the computer, ready to write something witty and clever for my blog. Unfortunately, my brain is not sending anything witty or clever to my fingers to type. It sucks to be brain-dead, I tell ya. On the weekend, I made myself a promise that I would try to post something every day, during the week. I realize now that it would have been more realistic to write something every day, during the weekend. I never seem to have enough time during the week. I mean, I have time to throw something stupid together but not enough time to write anything that is actually worth reading. Oh well, here it is anyway, like it, don't like it, I'm tired and cranky and it's getting dangerously close to being past my bedtime (yeah, that's right, I go to bed at 9 p.m., shut up okay?? I'm up at 4:45 a.m. most days!!).

My crabby-bitchy-grumpy mood that I went to bed with last night seemed to follow me into the morning. The nice part about it is that for some reason, I was all weepy this morning. There's nothing like going from bitchy to weepy for no good reason is there? It was not pleasant, not at all. I'd say that it was PMS but it's not even close to the time for that nonsense. I'm going to chalk it up to the change in the weather or (perhaps) my pony tail being too tight yesterday.

Fortunately, when I got to work this morning, my mood improved a bit. I slapped on my headphones and started my workday. If I'm not listening to music I'm usually tuned in to Air America Radio during office hours. This morning, things were buzzing because John Kerry was getting ready to announce his running mate. It was pretty exciting and I can't say that he's made a bad decision. Edwards seems like a cool guy, a good speaker, and he's got a lot of support in the southern states. It must be making those folks running the Dick & W puppet show a little nervous. Someone on the radio this morning made a joke about Edwards being younger than Cheney's pacemaker. I thought that was a hoot. I also thought it was interesting that the doctor Cheney fired, is a prescription drug addict. Kinda makes you wonder how he was qualified to give the VP a clean bill of health doesn't it?? There's nothing that makes me giggle into my tea like nervous republicans.

One thing that made me smile today:: After many months of transition and turmoil, I found out late this afternoon that I'll be moving into my "permanent" office next week. I should really say "desk" rather than "office" because I'm not changing rooms this time. This will be the third time in 15 months that I'll have to pack up and move but it's looking like this will be the last one (for a while anyway). I'm quite happy about it because my new cubicle is huge. It's in the basement but it has a massive, gorgeous window (with a big ledge) and this room actually has heat in the winter and air conditioning in the summer. These might be things that some folks would assume you'd find in a modern office building. I work in a historically designated building that is almost 200 years old. Sometimes we're lucky if the wiring works!! A lot of people would not like working in a basement but the windows in these old buildings are so large that the rooms are very bright and cheery. I think once I get moved into my "final resting place" I'll feel more settled, finally, in my new job.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Around mid-day, I was feeling terrific. I was happy and rested and just generally having a good day. Right now, I feel bitchy and crabby and grumpy. I'm also itchy and achey. I feel like a bunch of Snow White's dwarves or something. Over the past few days, we've gone out in the evenings for walks. The skitters have been eating me alive and it's driving me nuts. The bug bites seem to have turned me into a klutz as well as an itch factory. The other day, while I was cleaning up, I scraped my hand on one of our air conditioners (on the little sliding plastic thing that holds the A/C in place). Today it is driving me crazy. I really want to scratch it like crazy but I can't or I'll have a horrible scar so I guess it'll continue to drive me nuts. Yeah, I know, it's a short trip most days.

Between my scrapes and bites and the fact that I am Pasty McWhitey, I noticed today that my legs are covered in bruises. Really, it's almost as attractive as it sounds. If I actually tanned it wouldn't look so horrible. Unfortunately, I come from a long line of pasty white folks and I'm deathly afraid of skin cancer (my great uncle died from complications caused by skin cancer and my dad get zapped on a regular basis by the dermatologist) so I avoid the sun at all costs. The other night when we did the lawn, it took me almost as long to whack the weeds as it took Mark to cut the whole lawn. The entire time I was doing it, I was tripping over stuff, walking into patio furniture or small bushes. It must have been very amusing to our neighbours. That must be where all the bruises came from. They are mostly below my knees, it's charming. I also did a shit ass job of winding the replacement line onto the weed whacker because I kept having to take the unit apart to loosen the cord (when it gets too tight it won't auto-advance and the weed-whacker can't really trim the weeds without free flowing nylon line). The hardest part of the whole thing was, of course, the side of the driveway. I was conflicted about whether to whack or not. Part of me enjoyed the fact that it annoying you-know-who and part of me really wanted to see them gone. Of course, my anal-retentive gardener (bah!) side won out and it does look nice. For now anyway, it's still pretty weedy. I haven't decided though if I'm going to keep them trimmed or let them go wild for the rest of the summer. We'll see if I get any more snide comments before I make a decision!!

One thing that made me smile today: Ordinarily I hate kids. I shouldn't say that actually, I dislike babies and prefer kids. Well behaved kids or kids who you can actually talk to. I hate screaming bratty kids who hit their parents and are ill-behaved in restaurants. Today was the first day of summer camp on campus. Camp is fun for kids, kind of a drag for those of us who have to get around campus in the mornings or late afternoons. Parents who are dropping off or picking up their kids from the variety of summer camp programs get into this weird mindset once they roll onto campus. It's like, "hey, it's okay for me to stop my big honking SUV in the middle of the road FOR TEN MINUTES while I drop little Johnny off at camp. I have kids, I'm entitled!!" Anyway, around 12:30 or so, I went upstairs to get my lunch out of the fridge. To go up to the kitchen, I have to go up some steps by my office door, outside the building and through the main entry. On my way back to my office, I stopped at the top of the steps and watched the kids running around on the lawn in front of my building. It was kind of grey and dull, humid but chilly and threatening rain. Most grown up folks were moaning about the weather but the kids didn't care. They were playing games and giggling and just enjoying their summer vacation. For a second I remembered what it felt like to be a little kid with a whole summer in front of me and it made me smile.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

simply saturday

I don't know if it is just me and our network or it's blogger or what but every time I've visited a blogspot page today, I've had to refresh the page 3 or 4 times to view it. It's very odd and more than a little annoying

I'm having a lazy Saturday (sort of) but am exhausted all the same. Last night, about an hour after fell asleep, I woke up with a wicked charley horse in my right leg. It was so painful that I had to get up and stretch and stretch and stretch before I could comfortably lie down again. Ordinarily, I have a really high threshold for pain but something about your muscle feeling like it's in a vice grip always gets to me. After the walking around and stretching was over, I fell back to sleep, hard. So hard that when I woke up this morning, I felt as if I'd been drugged. My leg was still stiff and sore this morning. It was a really odd feeling. I actually felt groggy for a couple of hours this morning.

Our handy person, Pat, was here this morning. Mark hired him to come in for a few hours today so they could do a bunch of wiring upstairs. We've been wanting to put lights in our closets for some time now and we wanted a couple of extra circuits in our computer room but it involves crawling around in our attic and neither Mark, nor I are keen to do it. Enter Pat. While the two of them were upstairs working on the wiring, I figured I'd tackle the garden. It's a mess. The lawn has needed to be cut for a week now and I noticed last night that the weeds have completely taken over the flower bed at the side of the house.

After my shower, I completely covered myself with this spf 30 kiddy waterproof sunscreen that I had and, before breakfast, decided to start working on the back flower beds because "how bad can they be?" Well, as it happens, they can be pretty terrible. Ugly actually. Full of enthusiasm and covered with sunscreen, I pulled my little wheel barrow and bucket of gardening tools out of the shed and set off to de-weed the patio and the four tiny flower beds that surround it. About 30 minutes into the project, I was melting. It was totally fucking hot at 8 a.m. this morning. I could not believe it. Up until today, it's been just lovely outside, breezy, coolish and pleasant. I don't know if it was the heat or the fact that I'd clogged my pores up with sunscreen but I was sweating like some kind of sweaty animal.

I got about 1/3 of the side flower bed done, 1/3 of two of the small beds at the back, and about 1/4 of the patio done. I had to pack it in, the heat was killing me. As an excuse to take a break, I talked Joe into having breakfast with me on the patio. Bad idea, for me anyway. I think that eating in the sun did something to me (or just the sun, never mind eating cereal in it) because I felt nauseous for the rest of the morning. Blech! Right now, we're waiting for things to cool down a bit so we can get back outside and mow and weed-eat.

Our neighbour will be so happy. The crazy lady who lives next door to us has been going ape-shit over the weeds at the side of our driveway. It was not intentional at first, that those weeds never got whacked. About three mows ago, I was weed-eating while Mark mowed. I had done the whole back yard, the north side of the house and the front lawn. By the time I got to the south side of the house (the side next to the crazy lady), I ran out of that fishing line stuff that goes into the whacker. It took me a couple of weeks to replace it. One Saturday (the day we were going out to try to find the line stuff that goes into the whacker actually), she was outside on her front lawn with one of her landscapers (have I mentioned that she's in her 90's and has a different bunch of landscapers/contractors at her place every week). Ordinarily, I do my very best to avoid making eye contact with her. This time, she hollers at me "thanks for getting rid of those weeds." I just smiled and waved as we backed out of the drive. All of a sudden, I realized that my un-trimmed weeds must be driving her crazy. Since then, I have deliberately avoided pulling them (yes, in case you haven't figured it out yet I can be a bit of a bitch). Right now, they are about 2.5 feet high and even I'm sick of looking at them so they'll be gone tonight. I am sure it's been driving her absolutely around the bend though because she has to see them every time she pops her head out the door.

Now, I don't want you to think that I'm a bad neighbour, we don't have a lot of contact with our neighbours but we're basically friendly (we do the wave thing on the way to the car and all) but we're not all lovely-dovey with them. This lady is a huge pain in the bum and sometime, I'll fill y'all in. It's actually a little funny in a sick and twisted way.

Nausea and possible heat stroke aside (yes, I am a wimp and prone to complaining about the heat), I did compile another box of books to go to goodwill, bagged up all the clothes we discarded when we were emptying the closets for the wiring project and dusted and vacuumed the house (again). Since I've been on holidays, because of the work we've been doing around the house, I've had to vacuum every day and dust, like every other day. I'm not complaining at all (not much anyway), because I'm happy that the work is getting done, but boy howdy, I didn't plan on cleaning the whole house, every day. I must say though, doing a little bit every day is soooo much better than creating a huge mess and trying to clean it all up at once, at the end (like I did when we were painting last summer -- see, sometimes I do learn from my past mistakes).

Mark's doing all the wiring of plugs, switches and breakers on his own (he only needed Pat's help to run the actual wires to and from places). We ended up at Rona again this afternoon. We're there almost every Saturday now it seems. I do like that their store does not smell like Harvey's (this means YOU Home Depot) but I'm not crazy about how we seem to drop $100 every time we go in there. This should be end of the spending for a while. We've decided that once these two rooms are completed, we're going to spend the rest of the summer relaxing. We have a couple of days off again later on this month and then a week in August and I don't want to do much of anything at all. Of course it probably won't end up like that but that's my plan at this point in time.

Helpful Consumer Tip Of The Day: If you need mini-blinds, buy them at Bouclair. We finally ripped out the last set of crappy, previous house owner mini-blinds today. I knew that I could get them cheaper at Bouclair than at Rona or Home Depot but I had no idea how much. I found a set of 36" x 64" blinds for our office window and thought I was getting a deal at $12.49 plus tax. When I got to the cash, they rang up at $10.86 including tax. Score!! When I commented on the bargain, the cashier told me that some of their customers don't even wash their blinds anymore. Because they sell them so cheap, a lot of folks just throw out the old ones when they get dirty and replace them with new ones. Now, even I think that is kind of lazy but for $10 a blind, I almost can't blame them.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Stolen from Robyn:

You're the United Kingdom!

You're a much weaker person than you used to be, but you still
act like you did when everyone looked up to you.  Despite this, you're
probably a better person than you were when you had so much power over those
around you.  Though you do have a strange fascination with jewels and monarchs, which lets you play in castles, but also end up leading a sort of tabloid lifestyle.  You really like the Beatles, even more than you like Oasis.

Take the Country Quiz at the Blue Pyramid

I was saddened to read about Marlon Brando, I had no idea that he was 80 but I always think of him as he was in Last Tango in Paris. It's weird to think that it's over 30 years old.

'The Godfather' Actor Brando Dead at 80
- Marlon Brando, who revolutionized American acting with his Method performances in "Streetcar Named Desire" and "On the Waterfront" and went on to create the iconic characterization of Don Vito Corleone in "The Godfather," has died. He was 80.

Brando died at an undisclosed Los Angeles hospital Thursday, attorney David J. Seeley said Friday. The cause of death was being withheld, Seeley said, noting the actor "was a very private man."

Brando, whose unpredictable behavior made him equally fascinating off the screen, was acclaimed the greatest actor of his generation, a two-time winner of the Academy Award who influenced some of the best actors of the generation that followed, among them Al Pacino, Robert De Niro and Jack Nicholson.

He was the unforgettable embodiment of the brutish Stanley Kowalski of "A Streetcar Named Desire," the mixed up Terry Malloy of "On the Waterfront" (which won him his first Oscar) and the wily Corleone of "The Godfather."

Thursday, July 01, 2004

happy Canada day

Happy 137th birthday Canada, you don't look a day over 136!

We did a bunch of stuff around the house today, it seems like we've been doing that a lot lately but we're getting projects finished that we've been avoiding for a while so it's all good.

Yesterday, when we were at the movies, we saw a trailer for a new Richard Gere movie. The trailer really pissed me off. Now, bear in mind that I hate this guy, I find him to be really smarmy (I guess stupid women think this is charming -- I don't fall for it). Anyway, I'm watching the trailer and can't believe that Susan Sarandon would make such a piece of fluff, with J.Lo no less. As the thing moves along, I say to Mark, "I've seen this movie, a long time ago, but it was in Japanese." Sure enough, this piece of crap Gere film is called "Shall we Dance," a remake of "Shall we dansu?" and they didn't even change the title. Why do they do crap like this?? Why not just leave movies alone or re-release the Japanese version?? It was a perfectly cute film. Sure it had subtitles but what's wrong with that??

Anyway, I'm heading off to bed. I can hear fireworks being let off in the neighbourhood somewhere. It's driving the neighbour dogs nuts but it is Canada Day so what can you do?