Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Just one more comment before November (November!):

If they ever made a movie about Nick Saban (and it would be a terribly boring movie - I've met the man), Billy Bob Thornton should totally play him. He'd need a bit of a hairpiece, I think, but I noticed tonight that they look very similar.

Now I really need to go. I need to be in the office early tomorrow, and I've been sleeping through my alarm lately.


Maybe I should go early to get my thyroid checked, rather than waiting until the 6th.

You Know You Live in a Podunk Town When....

...the special feature series on the top-rated TV News is on...

Designer Handbags.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the local CBS affiliate is doing a monthlong series during sweeps on why women like designer handbags, how to spot knockoffs, and how to find legitimate bargains.

A. Month. Long. Series.


You would think with all the real news in Louisiana, all the real issues, they'd take on something meatier.

Guess not.

Question for the all-knowing masses....

Can uncooked potatoes be frozen - like, cut into wedges and frozen?

And yes, I am aware of the existence of frozen french fries, but for all I know, they have been parboiled first, then frozen.

So, any insights?

So here's what I don't understand. I don't understand how people who are adults - late 20s, early 30s, out of school adults - can let their parents support them and do it cheerfully.

I will write more about this later.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

So I did The Supper Studio thing tonight. It was OK. It would have been better in a group of friends, I think, rather than going solo. Also, I wish they had provided the proper measures for me. I was doing the half plan, which meant that everything had to be halved. Which meant I had to do math, then estimate measurements. That made it harder and less fun. Also, because I was there essentially alone (there was a couple there, but since they could each work on a meal, they were done in half the time), I just worked straight on through. I was on my feet and going back and forth for an hour and 15 minutes. I could have used a five minute break.

Oh, and they got the recipie wrong (just like I spelled that word that means the formula for a food concoction wrong) for Cincinnati Chili. They included beans, and way, way too much spice. Cajuns need to stop trying to southify northern dishes. I left the beans behind, personally.

Other than that, though, it was interesting. I didn't make any of the dishes tonight (I was exhausted after I got done, so I went to Sonic and got a cheeseburger and a cranberry slush - why hasn't anyone though of turning cranberry juice into a slush before this? It's divine!). Tomorrow, I'm making the tilapia with lemon and bacon. I'll let you know how it tastes.

Two more days until NaBloPoMo. You still have time to get in on the fun. Just click on the icon on my side bar. You don't have to write long posts (some of my from last year were only two lines), and you don't even have to post words - pictures work, too. You just have to post at least once a day, every day in November. It's a lot of fun, and a whole lot less painful than that other November thing. I double-dare you!

Perhaps if I go home tonight an lick one of the cats I can call in sick legitmately tomorrow.

I really, really need a day off.

I could tell all of you to ignore my rant of earlier today, that I was tired when I woke up at 5:30 and couldn't get back to sleep, so I was cranky.

But really, most of what I said still applies, even after getting a couple more hours sleep.

The fact of the matter is that I am physically, emotionally, and intellectually tired. I really need a few consecutive days off to recharge myself. And I'm depressed that I can't seem to get them.

OK. Let me start by saying that I still like and respect my boss. He is far and away the best boss I have ever had.


Yesterday he yelled at me (OK, discussed in strong language) about this last proposal I worked on. He got on my about things I had no control over, and things that I was told were already done that were not. How am I supposed to know that? When I ask the capture manager if X is done, and he says yes, I assume that, in fact, X is done. When the proposal was handed off to me, the person who handed it off went over everything with me, and told me X was taken care of as well. Also, I can't help it that no one, over the course of the whole proposal, told me that certain resumes were supposed to be in there, even after I went over the whole list with the capture manager. I also can't help it that I had to rewrite the whole meat of the proposal, even after the writers made changes.

I don't mind be yelled at when I screw up. I don't like being yelled at when things are outside of what I can control.

And let me just say this. I'm generally fine about working over holidays. I know that being single and family-less I will almost always get stuck with that. But this year, since we have the Friday after Thanksgiving off, and since that week is generally a pretty quiet one, I asked to take Wednesday and Monday off as well. You would have thought I had asked to take time off during the beginning (or end) of the fiscal year, when we really get slammed. I don't have plans, but I do have a ton of vacation time just sitting there waiting for me to take it. And I really need some time off. I'm tired, I'm stressed, and I'm on edge emotionally.

Nonetheless, he basically told me, without so many words, that I shouldn't ask for holiday time off since I have no one to spend holidays with.

I can't help it that I'm an only child, and I can't help it that my parents are dead. I can't help it that I'm not in a relationship and that I have no children. Why do I have to be penalized for that?

I work hard. I almost never get sick. In fact, the only sick days I have taken were six days after my surgery. I have taken exactly three vacation days so far, in over a year with the company, when I went north in June. Why I am I being given a hard time for asking for time off when there is basically no work?

Maybe I just need to take a sick day one of these days, just because I'm tired. Like, really, really tired. (And before you start worrying, I just think my thyroid is low. I get it checked again next week.) Maybe I should even be sick today.


The only problem with that is that I have never done anything like that, and I would feel guilty calling him and faking it.


Monday, October 29, 2007

One of the megachurches in town (there are about 5 of them, if you count Jimmy Swaggart's place) is building a new worship building. Only, they are not calling it a church or even a "worship center" as seems to the vogue among the megas here. They are calling it an arena.

That annoys me.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

  • What a week! I don't think I've ever worked on a proposal this painful before, even the ones that required an all-nighter, or the one that had 7 addenda before the due date (and two after!). I don't know what the problem was. It was just a hellaceous (is that how you spell that?) mess. We made it to FedEx yesterday with less than a minute to spare.
  • I had a great dinner tonight. Steak, with broccoli and corn (though I overcooked the vegetables a little), and ciabatta roll. Excellent!
  • I bought a pair of jeans I really like, and I got them for 40% off. Bonus!
  • Lindt makes very good chocolate.
  • Remember this quote from Martin Luther "The fewer the words, the better the prayer." I plan to write about it on Thursday. In case you are wondering why that quote in particular, it was on my church's signboard this week (today is Reformation Sunday, for all my Catholic homies).
  • Do the kids still say "homies" these days?
  • If you ever want to feel old, go to the Wal-Mart by a college campus on the Saturday before Halloween. I swear, I wanted to smack some of those kids.
  • I guess that's all I have to say. Have a lovely Monday.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Why is it so hard to format three freakin' resumes when you have a whole folder of correctly formated resumes sitting there as an example? All you have to do is copy and paste and use format painter. It isn't rocket science.


It's 10:02 on a Friday night and I'm at work.  Been here since 10 a.m.

Sigh. Even my boss got to leave for an hour to have dinner with his boyfriend.

I hate deadlines.

OK, internet. Here is your assignment. Convince me I should buy an ipod for myself for Christmas. The 4G Nano is only $149 from the Apple Store. I have a computer with USB ports now. I can even get a fast connection when I can pick up a wireless connection.

Yet I am reluctant. I know not why. So, convince me.

So, last night I dreamed I was pregnant. I mean really pregnant. Obscenely pregnant.

I hate hormones. Did I mention that recently?

Thursday, October 25, 2007

So guess what I'm doing next Tuesday night? Give up? I'm going here.

This is a place that basically does all the prep work of cooking for you - all the chopping, cutting, and other things I am afraid to do because sharp objects and me do not mix. You just go, assemble the meals in pans or plastic storage bags, take them home and stick them in the freezer, then thaw and cook as appropriate.

They've been around here for over a year, and I've always wanted to try it, but until recently they didn't offer an option for singles/couples. For 12 meals for 2, in other words, 24 meals for one, it costs $119, including tax. I know this is less than I spend on convenience foods every pay check. It comes out to about $5 a meal. Very worth it for me.

I'll let you know how things go.

Today, after more than five years of resistance despite living in the tiger's den, I bought an item with and LSU theme.

I have been corrupted.

Heaven help us all.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Explanations are, I suppose, in order.

I'm working on a proposal I feel no ownership of for a project we don't have the quals for. 3 out of 5 writers are horrible. The capture manager could not be less invested. My manager is busy with the two new kids and their efforts. We have to FedEx on Friday.

Oh, and I have a raging case of PMS that is making me hate everyone and everything one minute, and cry the next.

Plus, it's been cold here (well, into the 50's and 60's anyway) and I can't get warm in this office, despite wearing long pants, a sweater, a sweatshirt, a scarf, and an afghan.

I'm cranky, I'm tired, and my bad leg hurts. And I got smacked in the mouth when the shower curtain rod fell today.

And I have PMS. Did I mention that already? I ate two chocolate donuts today. I hate chocolate donuts. But they had chocolate. And grease.

Life sucks.

Stupid, stupid hormones.

That is all.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Anyone Surprised?

What Flavour Are You? I am Vanilla Flavoured.I am Vanilla Flavoured.

I am one of the most popular flavours in the world. Subtle and smooth, I go reasonably with anyone, and rarely do anything to offend. I can be expected to be blending in in society. What Flavour Are You?

For Those of You Who May Be Interested...

…there are a ton of good anagrams for "Washington".

Dear Universe...

Can you please pass on to your inhabitants that there is a significant difference between the plural and possessive form of nouns? Can you also pass on the fact that they are not interchangeable?

Thank you.

Monday, October 22, 2007

I Love PBS!

Here is why PBS is better than every other television network, broadcast or cable.

Tell me where else you can watch a documentary about people who raise show cows (I think I wrote about that a few weeks ago), then a few weeks later, watch a documentary about people whose hobby is raising giant pumpkins.

And what other venue is there for people who wake up one day and say, "You know what kind of film I'd like to make? A documentary about people raising giant pumpkins!"


Another Month of Blopping...

As you can tell from the little badge directly to the right (-->, for those of you who are directionally challenged), I am doing NaNoBloPo again this year. If you weren't around last November, this is basically very similar to NaNoWriMo (where you commit to writing a 50,000 word novel in a month - never did succeed with that one), except a whole lot easier. In this one, you just commit to posting something in your blog every day for the month of November. It's really, really painless, and kind of fun. Your posts don't have to be deep or long (click on my NaNoBloPo tag for examples from last year).

Come join us! There are over 1700 signed up so far this year (as opposed to about 800 last year). Click on the link to the right (-->, for those of you who are directionally challenged and suffering from short-term memory loss), and sign up.

Oh, and yes, Ning is a social networking site. But it seems pretty grown-up friendly to me, and really geared more to special interest groups or event groups like this.

Sorry, Guys

Here is another girly post. Feel free to skip.

OK. I found a bra that I really like (though I would like it more if the band were one size bigger).

It's a cup size larger than I usually buy. I've decided that cup size, despite every brand having the same guidelines for when you measure yourself, is really an objective thing. I have a bra at home that is a C cup (my usual size) that could easily accomodate about six socks in addition to me in each cup. It is huge, as is the other one I bought in that brand when I needed a bra in a hurry to go with something low-cut (longtime readers will recognize it as the bra that I decided would work better as a beanie hat because the cups were literally as big around as my head). Others I have in that size are too tight or fit just right.

I feel like the Goldilocks of bra shopping.

Anyway, this new one that I bought is a cotton/lycra blend. The cups themselves are just cotton (without lycra). This is good in that they don't stretch and in that I can't wear anything but cotton cups anymore (ever since my surgery, all my nylon and lace bras make me itch like mad - not a good thing in that area, as reaching inside your shirt to scratch your boobs is generally frowned upon in business meetings). There is wide, non-undewire support under the cups, and a wide band.

It's really supportive and really comfortable, and, like I said, my one wish is that they would make it one band size larger (though I think band sizes are subjective, too), or that they would spread the sets of hooks out a little bit more (they are really crammed together back there, and a little more separation might be enough to fix everything.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled blogging.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

OK. You have to deal with about two more political posts before next year. Here is number one.
I hate, hate, hate the election system here in Louisiana. We have open primaries, which means you can vote for any candidate, regardless of what party you are affiliated with. It sucks. Let me tell you why.

  • Candidates can win elections without having to go through a general election. If a candidate receives 50% plus one vote, they can win the whole election. That happened tonight in the governor's race. While the guy who won will probably be good for the state - and probably would have won the runoff anyway, I would have liked to see what a democrat could have done against him in a short, intense (4 week) campaign.
  • It is entirely possible to have no choice but to vote for candidates in only one party in the primary. In my state house district, all three candidates were Republicans. That isn't surpirsing, considering my district is made up of rich folks and college students (plus a few middle class single folk who also inhabit the apartments).
I'm generally pretty bipartisan. I have no problem voting for a Republican if he or she is truly the best candidate. But I want to have a choice. I don't want to feel forced into a particular party. I don't want a candidate to have a cakewalk and to be able to be elected while skipping out on 3/4 of the debates and candidate forums that have been held, which is exactly what happened in the governor's race tonight.

I do believe that the Governor-elect will probably do a good job, despite some things that he said that made me really nevous. I don't support about half of what he says, but I do support the other half. He is a bit too close to being close to the Christian Right for my tastes, despite being Catholic (though Catholics here do tend to align more closely to Evangelicals than they did in Pennsylvania. In fact, quite of few of them here - at least in the deanery I live in - are Republican, which is unusual). But he really wasn't challenged.

Of course, part of that is the fault of the electorate. People have been saying for months that Jindal would probably win outright, so people asked why should I bother voting for anyone else. People didn't call him on the fact that he only showed up for three out of 15 debates or forums across the state, which is one of the things that put me off him. And there was a really low voter turn out for such an important election (only about 40% - though my precinct had hit that by 2:30 when I voted). I can promise you that if they did a party analysis of those voters and compared them to the list of all registered voters, a higher percentage of Republican voters voted. The apathy of the Democrats in this state is sad.

But part of it is the system here. It is too easy for one party to have a monopoly and to, in effect, buy an election. The Republican Party has far more money and far more power than any other in the state. That played a factor.

For as obsessed as the people in this state are with politics (It's right up there with God and football), you would think that more people would start to wonder we're stuck with this system. And you would think with all the bitching people do about how screwed up this state is, they would be embracing candidates who are talking about reform, rather than the same-old, same-old, which never gets accomplished anyway.


So, let's take a little trip inside my psyche.

Yesterday I was driving home from work. I had decided to order pizza because it was getting close to time for my new TV obsession (that would be Friday Night Lights, for those of you who are behind the curve). As I was getting close to home, I was fretting because if I got pizza I wouldn't have any food to give the cats who live on my patio and keep trying to get into my apartment. The students who usually feed them are on break, and I was worried about them (yes, even though they are mostly feral and are perfectly capable of hunting lizards, frogs, and birds - the evidence of which I have found on my slab on more than one occasion). I though about stopping at CVS or Winn-Dixie to get them food, but then I used the feral argument on myself, which made sense.

But then I said to myself, "If I stop giving them food, they won't like me anymore."

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I am in a codependent relationship with a couple of stray cats.

I really, really need to get a social life.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

This website is fun. At least if you like words. It's a vocuablary thing, and for every word you get right, the sponsors donate 10 grains of rice to the UN Food Thing (yes, there is a real name, and no, I don't feel like looking it up). There are no popups or commercials, or anything like that. The sponsor's logos just appear at the bottom of the page.

It looks legit, and even if it isn't the game is fun.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Most days I'm fine with the fact that I am single and childless. Doesn't bother me a bit.

Then there are days when the fact that I will most likely never marry and the fact that I will most likely never have children hit me hard and make me cry.

Today is one of those days.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Pedigree people should not be allowed to make commercials ever. Why? Because they all make my cry. Between the "I know that I am a good dog" shelter dog commercials, and the new "We're for dogs" commercial, I've gotten teary over their commercials more than I have over my favorite teary movies.

Oh, and again, let me just say that you must watch Friday Night Lights. Seeing the kids on that show is like looking at teenagers I've worked with before. I've never seen teenagers (or marriage and family life) portrayed more realistically in any fictional media ever.

Watch it. All the back episodes are on

Sunday, October 14, 2007

If you didn't watch the first season of Friday Night Lights, you have to. I rented in on recommendation of someone whose blog I read regularly (I don't link because there is some adult content). I just finished the first episode, and it was wonderful. The box set is inexpensive if you are the buying type (I think its only $20). It's really excellent, even if football isn't your thing.

Friday, October 12, 2007

This is my 600th post.

In the past 50.5 hours, I have gotten exactly 3 hours of sleep.

I love deadlines.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I finished a whole quilt. Granted, it is a baby quilt. And it is a flannel quilt, so it has no batting. But I did the whole thing by hand. And I'm pretty damned proud. I'm giving it to a coworker whose daughter just had his first grandchild. Here are some pictures.

On the last picture, you can kind of see the quilting. It's in a star pattern, right in the middle of the picture.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Just had to share this. Who would have thought that "Barbie Girl" sounded so good when played by four cellos? And who would have thought that some classical music major somewhere would have gotten bored enough to do the arrangement for four cellos?

Friday, October 05, 2007

I gave into temptation and spent $10 on two Ty Beanie Babies breast cancer awareness bears today. They are cute, pink, and a portion of the profits supports breast cancer research. My favorite aunt died from breast cancer, so I'm all for that.

I found mine at Walgreens, if you are looking for them. Of course, everyone has pink everything for sale this month, so I bet you can find them other places as well.

This article really makes you think. And it makes you wonder when people who are leaders of Christian denominations lost sight of what Jesus said and did.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

So politics is on my mind right now. I guess it's 'cause our elections are rolling around soon (October 20 to be precise).

One of the big issues in both the governor's race and the state legislature race is whether or not to allow/require creationism/intelligent design to be taught in public schools. It has come up in every debate I've watched, listened to, or read about.

Personally, I believe in what I guess you could term intelligent design. I can't deny the science that evolution happened. There is hard, concrete, scientific proof of that. However, I can't deny that there was some kind of force, organization, direction guiding it along. I have no proof of that, except that I happen to not believe that such a complex series of events can happen by mere chance.

I believe, along with most Jews, Christians, and Muslims who believe in evolution, that that force is Yahweh/God/Allah, Father and Creator. God probably didn't manage the task in seven days, which contemporary biblical scholarship would agree with, but He (I'm using the male pronoun as a default because it's easier) did guide it along over millions of years. That belief doesn't invalidate the main point of the Creation stories in Genesis, that God created everything, and created it to be good (before humanity got a hold of it and mucked it all up).

Now having said that, I absolutely, positively, do not believe that creationism or intelligent design should be taught in any way, shape, or form in public schools. Contrary to what some conservative folk believe, this is not a Christian nation, and this is not a theocracy. There is a diversity of beliefs in this country, and we need to respect that. The schools should be teaching the facts; the parents who want their children to grow up with a certain belief about how the world was created should be teaching that, along with their respective faith groups, if that is applicable.

Now some would say, "I belive God created the world in seven days. Where is the respect for that?" It's respected in the same way every other belief is respected - by not being discussed and discredited by people who don't know what they are talking about. If we teach one religious belief about creation, we would end up having to teach them all. Not only is that confusing, but the discussion that would arise from people who are not comparative theologians (science teachers, in other words), would be lightweight at best, misinformed in the middle, and downright wrong at worst.

I don't even understand why this is an issue for discussion. Any legislation that would pass would end up going all the way to the Supreme Court, where it would be shot down anyway.

Sigh. My goal was to keep my blog non-political. I may not be able to do that through this election (not to mention the one to come next year).


Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Just in case you were wondering, Campbell's Selects Wedding Soup is not as good as Wedding Soup should be. The broth is bland and kind of greasy, and the spinach is gross. Oh, and the orzo is really mushy. The meatballs, however, are very tasty.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Every blogger I read regularly is either having a baby or sending a kid off to kindergarten or college. There has been talk on several blogs about going on college tours this fall. And by tours, I mean long trips out of state to see 15-20 different colleges.

Have things changed that much? When I was in high school, my parents agreed that I could go to all the roadshows I wanted in Pittsburgh, and that I could visit any school in Pittsburgh (because bus fare is cheap), and schools that were in-state, drivable, and did not require an overnight stay, and then only if I was serious about them. As a result, the only schools I visited outside of Pittsburgh were IUP (with a school group) Dickenson, St. Vincent, and Gannon, which was my ultimate choice.

(I must admit, though, that he also took me to see West Viriginia Wesleyan, mainly because they were offering me a full scholarship based on my grades through my junior year and my SAT scores. Even he admitted that wasn't everything, though, and that I could never live in a place that rural.)

Have things changed that much? Or was I just outside of the norm way back then? Granted, we didn't have a lot of money, and I'm sure that influenced how I approached the whole college search process. And most of the other kids in my class were in the same boat (inner city school and all). I thought only rich kids when and toured tons and tons of colleges, but most of the people I'm reading about are firmly middle-class.

I don't get it.