Thursday, June 26, 2008

So I bought a foam cube ottoman for under my desk at work. Since the van incident when I was in college (and if you don't know what that is, ask and I'll share), my leg hurts if I sit for too long without elevating it. Plus, it lets me adjust the position I'm sitting in more often during the day.
Anyway, the card that came with it described the scent when you open the plastic around the cube as "newness scent".
I describe it as "stale urine".
I borrowed my officemate's lemon air freshener, so now it smells like "stale urine and furniture polish" or "mens room with lemon scented urinal cakes".
Just thought the internet should be aware.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I've said it before and I'll say it again: religion should keep its nose out of politics and vice-versa.

Therefore, James Dobson (who is a terrible hypocrite) should leave Barak Obama (and John McCain, for that matter, if he decides to go after him some more) alone about his reading and interpretation of the Bible. How a candidate understands the Bible should not enter into a presidential campaign. At all. Period.

I especially like this quote from Dobson:

"I think he's deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the
Bible to fit his own worldview, his own confused theology," Dobson said.
"... He is dragging biblical understanding through the gutter."

Dr. Dobson, an awful lot of people, yours truly among them, believe that you and your ilk are doing the same thing.

Here's the thing. We are human beings. We can't know the mind of God, and we all have our own agendas. No matter how we read the Bible, and how we interpret a particular passage, we are all adapting the Scripture to fit our own worldviews. Until we die and are with the Big Guy in paradise, or until the Second Coming, that's pretty much all we can do, and all we have to go on.

Oh, and while I'm criticizing politics and religion, Obama's campaign has a "director of religious affairs." Why? This is not a theocracy, and I don't want to see it turn into one. The diversity of religions in this country is a good thing, and an even better thing is the doctrine of separation of church and state. Religion has no place in a political campaign, in my opinion.

I'm done being controversial now. But on the politics and religion front. Check out this fine bit of merchandise from Ran across it when I was looking for a tasteful cross pendant to replace the one I lost years ago.


Monday, June 23, 2008

I Love My Job...

...but sometimes I don't like it very much.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I'm an Idiot

Total and complete idiot.

The young adults at my church (I consider myself an emeritus member now) have been planning a going-away thing for our departing pastor and his wife. They both really have a heart for young adults, and recogize what an important part of the Church (capital intentional) they are. Anyway, people have been telling me all along that it was on the 21st. So when I get the e-mail confirming the time and location and what I should bring, I didn't even look at the date.

So after sleeping in this morning (another long, long week), I rushed around this morning to buy stuff to make dip, then rushed to get everything ready (I left myself an hour to actually prepare the dips I planned to make - 3 different ones, all from scratch, thank you very much). I took a quick shower and ran out of the house because I still had a chance to be on time for the do, which started at 4. Of course, I left the house without my purse - it wasn't even on my radar.

Anway, I find the house, get there right at 4...and no one is there, including the owners. I thought, "That's odd. I'll drive around the block and see if that changes." After doing that 4 times, I realized that I had to have the wrong day (either that, or someone was playing a cruel trick). So I head home, knowing I was very low on gas and had to stop at a gas station first.

I get to the gas station purse. I made it home though, through much prayer and turning the A/C off. Checked my e-mail, and low and behold, the party is tomorrow, when I can't actually make it because I committed to working tomorrow.


I'm going to go to at least drop off stuff for their gift, unless I see someone at church I can give it to. This really sucks.

I was really looking forward to this. Today was the first full day I've had off in a month. I could have used some fun.


This is a visual representation of my blog entries from this past December. If I ever had the time, I'd like to do it for the full four years (four years!) that I've been blogging.

You can see a bigger version by clicking on the little version. That'll also take you to the site where you can make your own with whatever text you choose.

Friday, June 20, 2008

I meant to share this with all of you lovely people a while ago, but never got around to it.

I wrote this short story for a contest about a year ago. I wrote it quickly, but I kind of like it. Looking at it now, I can see the flaws, so I'm going to call it a work in progress. But I'll share it anyway since I don't have the energy to produce an original thought.

To Give Grace

I hated going home.

The house that had once been a haven had become a prison. I hated the way a ramp replaced the steps I used to leap from, trying to touch the awning. Now, I had to duck to keep from banging my head on that same overhang. The living room was rearranged with all the furniture crammed into one small space to allow easy access from the front door to the hallway. The scent of home, of carpet freshener and home cooked meals, had vanished. In its place was the astringent scent of antiseptic and sickness.

The dining room table, where many meals had been shared and much homework had been done, had been taken down; a hospital bed and a portable commode now occupied the space. The buffet no longer held knick knacks collected over a lifetime. Instead, it was decorated with medicine bottles and medical supplies. The china cabinet was the sole symbol of normalcy, still displaying the wedding china and good crystal that never got used any more.

I hated seeing him lying in that bed. I wanted to imagine him as the same man who walked down the hill to the playground with me and my tricycle, carrying both of us home when I inevitably fell and scraped up my knees. I wanted to see the same man who taught me to catch and throw a softball in the side yard and came to every one of my games. And I wanted him to be the same man who helped me move into my dorm just a few short years ago, trying and failing to hold back tears as he left me on my own for the first time.

But he wasn’t

Oh, I could search my memory and create an image of him sitting on the porch with me listening to a ballgame. He'd have a beer, I'd have an iced tea, and we'd share a bag of pretzels. We'd share bits of baseball trivia and analyze coaching decisions. Neighbors would stop by to listen to an inning or two. It would be that one perfect moment that everyone dreams of. But in truth, he was barely aware of the world around him. I tuned the radio to the opening day game, and he barely acknowledged it. He was asleep by the second inning. I hated the fact that this was our reality now.

I hated going home.

But I loved him.

I loved him enough that I hid my embarrassment the first time I helped him transfer from the bed to the wheelchair and saw his genitals, which I never had before. I forced myself to remember that this was the man who changed my diapers and bathed me when I was an infant, and I pretended I didn't notice his vulnerability. Had he been more alert, he would have been mortified.

I washed his hair in the kitchen sink, and as I poured water over his head, I remembered his patience as he taught me to swim. He supported me as I attempted to float, and I was fine as long as I felt his hands. The minute he'd let go, I'd stiffen up and start to flail. He'd just catch me, calm me down and start all over again. I remembered that as my patience is tried when he spasms involuntarily, causing me to spill water all over the floor.

I rubbed lotion into his papery skin, repeating his actions in cleaning my many wounds. I was both adventurous and clumsy as a child, which is a dangerous combination. Skinned elbows, cut-up knees, bruised hands and shins, he treated them all with a gentleness that was so contrary to his large, awkward hands and gruff voice. I tried to mirror the actions of my memory as I anointed the bald spot on his head, avoiding the scab that appeared since the last time I saw him.

As I made his breakfast, I recalled his efforts at meal preparation. He was of the opinion that everything was better the second day as long as it was fried with an egg, an attitude that was probably the result of growing up on a chicken farm during the Depression. That philosophy of cooking led to some interesting dishes, including the very memorable spaghetti omelet. It also led to my utter aversion to eggs. Still, I cooked them for him because he liked them, and they were one of the few foods he could digest easily.

I broke the toast into tiny pieces, small enough that he wouldn't choke, and mixed them in with the soft-boiled egg. I placed the bowl on his bedside table and elevated the head his bed. He used a specially adapted spoon to eat, but he still struggled. Every bite he took was a major effort, and he acted as if that one morsel was so important that it would sustain him forever. He could no longer hold a cup, so I held the glass of orange juice to his lips every now and then for him to drink.

It was hard, this meal time ritual. I was impatient, and I sometimes resented the fact that I was taking care of a parent when I should be out living my life and having fun. But then I would see the framed photograph hanging on the wall near his bed. It was a picture of me with him and my mother at my high school graduation, just before she died. Looking at their expressions, the love and pride they felt was a tangible thing, and I knew what I had to do. How could I not give everything to someone who gave everything for me and asked for nothing in return?

Sometimes, late at night, I'd hear him become restless. He'd move around as much as he could, and make small noises. I'd go and sit with him, smooth his hair and hold his hand. He sometimes called out with the one of the few words he still had: "Help."

An outsider would think he was suffering, that he wanted relief from his pain. But I knew better. That small utterance was prayer, in its most basic form. I can't count the number of times, when things were desperate, I heard him say, "Help me, Lord," with complete confidence, as if he knew that God couldn't ignore that simple prayer.

I never understood that. To my logical mind, it didn't make sense to believe that asking some unseen entity, who may or may not exist and who may or may not care, for assistance. It made even less sense to be confident that he, she, or it would respond. And now, as I watched my father, a fairly young man, deteriorate by the day, I wondered how any God could inflict so much pain on someone who had such profound faith and love. Not only was it illogical, it was unjust and hateful. Where was the God of Love now?

Still, late at night when I held is hand and smoothed his hair, something in me stirred. I found myself moved by the simple faith of this dying man. And even though I wasn't sure anyone would hear me, I joined my prayers to his.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Because I am a Geek...

...and because Geometry was the only math class ever that I got an "A" in...


more cat pictures

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I am working on a project now that it seems no one cared enough about to see to it that it doesn't suck. I did my best, but when no one else does, it's hard to care yourself.

Plus, I'm pretty sure that it is, in fact, a cold that I have. And I think I have a fever.

I'm not even half way done with this document.

Life sucks.

I bought a new fan for the living room. I have a fan in here because if I don't the only way I can stand to be in my apartment is to set the A/C on 65. Not happening.

My old fan just wasn't powerful enough. I kept waking up sweating in the middle of the night (remember, I sleep on my couch because...well, it's a long story). The new fan makes me feel like I'm living in a wind tunnel on the lowest setting. Sigh.

In other news, I missed church for the second week in a row. The 9:30 service time for summer, combined with 70 hour work weeks conspires for me just not making it. If the service was at it's usual time (11) or even at 10:30, I would have made it - I woke up at 9:30.

I also have a raging allergy to something in the air, or a cold. I don't know which.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Help a New Orleans Landmark

This company, Jeld-Wen Windows and Doors, does restoration work on one historic lighthouse per year completely for free. The lighthouse on Lake Ponchartrain in New Orleans took a huge hit in Katrina and hasn't recovered yet. By clicking on this link and voting for the New Orleans lighthouse, you can potentially help that restoration to happen.

Oh, and I have a slightly NSFW lighthouse link to share, if you are interested. It really isn't NSFW (I sent it to my boss), but I don't want to potentially offend anyone either (and little kiddies really shouldn't see it). If you are interested, leave me a comment.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

I'm Like...The Tempest, or Something


Your Score: Problem Plays

You scored 46% = Tragic, 44% = Comic, 24% = Romantic, 31% = Historic

You are the "Problem Plays!" The Problem Plays are a group of Shakespeare's plays that cannot be readily identified as either Tragedies or Comedies because they have an equal amount of both. The Problem Plays often present the protagonist with a situation that must be overcome, but after a toilsome journey, the hero almost always comes out on top! Often called "tragicomedies," the Problem Plays contain elements of dark psychological drama, light-hearted comedy, and a bit of romance. This means you are most likely a well-rounded individual with a perfect balance Tragedy, Romance, and Comedy in your life. While you may experience some hard times along the way, odds are you will fight through them and come out on top!

Link: The Which Shakespeare Play Are You? Test written by macbee on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test
View My Profile(macbee)

I don't completely understand the phenomenon of lolcats. Nevertheless, I visit I Can Has Cheeseburger once or twice a week because...well, because.

This really tickled my funny bone today, perhaps because I am very, very tired.


more cat pictures

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Still Alive...

...just overwhelmed with work, and I probably will be for the rest of the month.

Had my last appointment with my current primary care doctor yesterday - she is moving. That makes me sad because I like and trust her. Now I have to get to like and trust someone else. Given my fear of and general dislike of physicians, that sucks.

Oh, and how about those Pens! 3 OT last night, and they pulled it out. Fleury just refused to lose.

I'm really tired. I wish I could sleep for another hour or so.