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Thursday, March 31, 2005

Random postings

I leave for London tomorrow! The bbf has promised to replace all the lager in the fridge with chardonnay, fill his flat with flowers, and cover up the stale underpants smell with lavender sachets.

The stale underpants thing was a joke. I hope.

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Can I talk about my cat for a minute? As Jen would say, "it's a good thing she's cute" because she's a little light in the brains department. First, she has a tendency to misjudge the height of things she's jumping onto so she ends up in a death-defying scramble to haul herself up on the couch/bed/coffee table and then (hilariously) crashes spectacularly to the ground. I thought cats were supposed to be graceful? Not this one. She crashes around my house like an elephant, quite a feat for a 9-pound creature.

Last Saturday when we had beautiful weather I let her go outside for the first time and tied her to a long rope. The rope was attached to her collar and not to a harness, which I would prefer. The reason for this is that when I put a harness on her, she crouches down and won't move except to crawl on the floor with her belly scraping on the ground. One day I figured I would force her to get used to it so I put the harness on and left for work. When I came home 9 hours later I found her crouched on the floor in the same position I left her in, looking desperate and freaked out. The second I took the harness off she took off like a bat out of hell for the litter box. Poor thing. So the harness was retired forever. Aaaanyway. I had her tied up outside and she was having a ball, sniffing around, laying in the dirt, eating grass, throwing up grass. But she would inevitably reach the end of the rope and feel it pull on her neck. At which point she would freeze and stand, slightly straining against the rope, until I went outside and moved her to a place where the rope wouldn't pull.

See, she didn't understand that she simply couldn't keep moving away from the house. She didn't GET that she could retreat a bit and continue to explore. As soon as she felt that tug she would freeze. So I spent all day going outside every 20 minutes to pick her up so she could continue her sniffing, rolling, eating, and general springtime frolicking.

All this might be because my cat is a giant stoner who, every night between 8 and 9, will sit in the spot on the floor where we sprinkle the catnip and stare plaintively at me. Then she will eat and roll around in the nip, lay on her back for a while, then turn around and watch TV for a while like a normal ... person.

I thought animals were so in tune with their sense of smell that they don't recognize television cats or cat-in-the-mirror as an animal. Not mine. Cat-in-the-mirror is Miss Mouse's best friend.

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So. Terri Schiavo is dead. I hope her family can find some peace, I can't imagine what they're going through. Her situation raised so many questions and left me with such an icky feeling about the whole thing. I went back and forth, nearly every day, on my position on the whole thing and eventually decided that it didn't matter what I thought was right or wrong. I didn't have enough information to make an informed opinion and the case had nothing to do with me. It's terribly sad and reminds me to live every day to the fullest.

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Speaking of living life to the fullest, I just got a flyer at work that Tonic of Uptown is closing. Good riddance, I say. Good riddance to $10 G&Ts, obnoxious and pretentious people who think they're better looking than they really are, and most of all... GOOD RIDDANCE to FAKE lines outside that make it appear that Tonic is the coolest place in Uptown with hordes of people waiting for the priviledge of paying an exhorbitant cover to simply step through its doors only to find out that the line is fake, FAKE I TELL YOU, because there is NO ONE inside.

This weekend they are offering free beer and cocktails between 8 and 10 on Friday and Saturday night. Free booze! I will be gone and therefore not tempted to recoup the expense I incurred on one very unfulfilling and expensive night there.

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My new Palm is very cute and very blue. It is also quite small although you wouldn't know it considering it was delivered in a box from Amazon that was... well.. bigger than a breadbox. Actually, it was bigger than three breadboxes. All for a tiny palm! I dug through about 100 of those little blowup ziplocky things they use as packing material now and pulled out a teeny tiny package. The box was so large that I could nearly have fit my entire body into it.

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Yesterday was such a fun day, full of exciting deliveries. I also got my new sheets, 600TC; it was so hard to get out of bed this morning. My new sheets are awesome, even better than the silk sheets that recently disintegrated in the dryer. AND I picked up a memory foam mattress pad which was quite pleasant.

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I took a break from my extreme overconsumption last night to watch American Idol. Wah. How sick is it that Jessica Sierra got kicked off while smarmy butt-chin Constantine is still there? What is WRONG with people?

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Can I go home now? I HAVE TO START PACKING!!

Monday, March 28, 2005

It's A Good Thing We're Cute...

The following conversation occurred between my sister, myself, and my mother Easter Morning.

S(Sister)(to Me): Oohhh, I like your poncho, where did you get it?
M (Me): Orange County.
S: Orange County?
M: California
S: Ohhhh. (Pause) I wonder why they call it that?
M: Probably because they grow oranges there.
S: No! Poncho, why do they call it a poncho!
M: It's probably Spanish for "jacket without arms."
S: Or "jacket with neckhole and no arms".
M: (Pause).....or that.
Mom: (Looking up from her book) No, "Poncho" is named after "Poncho Gonzalez", the man with no arms.
M & S: Really?
Mom: (Looking back into her book) No.


I am blaming this on the inhalation of egg dye that we were exposed to the night before. I plan on writing the people at Paas to post a label reading "Could cause delayed brain function, do not attempt to communicate in any fasion, nor operate machinery and stuff."

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Isn't It Ironic?

As sung by Alanis Morissette so eloquently, Isn’t it ironic? Three days after I wrote a blog praising the beauties of “Up North”, some emotionally dysfunctional, neo-Nazi message posting nut job decides to go and kill his grandfather, his grandfather’s girlfriend and a bunch of innocent people at the local Red Lake High School, making it the “second worse” school shooting since Columbine. And where does Red Lake geographically lie, but right smack dab in the middle of the proverbial “Up North.”
I would nonetheless like to mention that this catastrophe is in no way indicative of the regular activities of northern Minnesota, and I would just like to again, remind those of you not to think of the area as a criminal filled society where right and wrong are disregarded. It’s like finding that green chip in an otherwise perfectly good bag of Lay’s…no matter how you may wish it wouldn’t have, it unfortunately just happens (O.K so it’s not really like that, but I felt like leaving an analogy and that’s the one that first came to mind).
And this brings me to the obvious rhetorical questions that I am not going to even get started on regarding where this kids guardians and loved ones were and how it went unnoticed that he had the mind of a suicidal psychopath since his father apparently ended his own life 8 years prior. Not going to go there. I just ask that your thoughts, prayers, and well wishes go to the families and people of Red Lake that suffered through this awful tragedy, because it could have happened anywhere, but unfortunately it happened “Up North.”

http://www.startribune.com/style/news/newsgraphics/files/redlake.html

Friday, March 18, 2005

And on the Eighth Day He Created..."Up North."

It’s another Friday evening in Minneapolis MN, and we are being bombarded with more snow, enough to close schools and allow the everyday working person to start the weekend a little early. And after loosing control and slamming my car into a curb, I decided to join the masses and head home prior to the normal end of the working day. When I arrived home I went to the local NBC affiliate news website at http://www.kare11.com/ to check the local forecast before I shoveled the sidewalk, and noticed something that sparked a little inspiration for today’s blog. After clicking on the “Sky Scan 11 Radar” option, I saw something that has become a sort of “Minnesotanism.” There are four pictures of regions in the local covering area, one being a blown up version of the Twin Cities Metro Area, another one being of St. Cloud which is about 80 miles north of Minneapolis, another being a smaller condensed version of the Twin Cities, and the final radar map labeled “Up North” which immediately caught my attention. Now “Up North” is not actually a city, although it has been capitalized on the Kare 11 website and to try and explain the error in relative grammer, “Up North” has an uncertain, yet distinct boundary to those of us who live here.

For those of you who are not from Minnesota, “Up North” is more than likely where you believe you are when you land at the airport, or cross the boarder from any extreme west, east, or southern state. To us natives “Up North” is a geographical area that encompasses the entire state of Minnesota from around St. Cloud to Canada and stretches through Northern Wisconsin. It’s something that if you ask someone “What are you doing this weekend” and the answer is “Going Up North,” the conversation is never continued with a question of exactly where, it is just assumed.

So, one may ask, “How do you exactly know when you’re Up North?” And the answer to that is a little tricky. First of all, the obvious is that the trees are taller, denser, and more piney. There are more campgrounds, lakes, and cabins and the people are considerably more laid back. Personally, I know when I’m Up North when the first cocktail is usually consumed at around 11 o’clock in the morning and continues throughout the day while sitting in an inner tube in the middle of a lake. For those of you who are not yet at your destination in your inner tube, just look for a Dairy Queen that also carries live bait and gas stations that sell fishing licenses; big clue that you’re “Up North.” Gun racks are more visible and camouflage is usually worn year round on males driving large trucks with dead animals thrown in the bed (more importantly, those men usually hold more respect for those animals than anyone they know). Blaze orange could be and more than likely is included in the school colors, and the opener of hunting season is a holiday that is celebrated by all. The “Friday Night Fish Fry” is the place to be which serves killer walleye fillets with french fries, mashed potatoes, and cold slaw, and in the summertime will most probably follow with an evening campfire and drinks with good friends. It’s a place where your cell phone more than likely will not work and you really don’t mind because it makes life that much more uncomplicated. “Up North” is one of the only places where you can get away with having riding lawn mower races after “a few too many” and not be frowned upon. You can go skinny-dipping in the middle of the night and take a bath in the lake in the morning and not worry about your neighbors. You will go to sleep with the fireflies and wake up with the loons, and every worry or concern disappears in the reflection of the lake that is in front of you. The air smells like campfire and lake water and it’s quiet enough to hear the eagle’s cry from above. You can actually see each and every star in the sky and find at least three that will fall right in front of you appearing as if they were to land in the palm of your hand. The daytime is endless and the sunsets are miraculous. All in all, Up North is a place that has pretty much lost all concern with time, deadlines, and conventional worries. It’s a place to bring your family and friends, it’s a place that just “is.”

And as I sit here and reflect upon it, “Up North” is a place that very much deserves the capitalization that has been given by Kare 11, for it has earned the love and respect of almost everyone I know and is a place that I will treasure forever.

Monday, March 14, 2005

The Top 10 Identifiers That I Am Getting Old.

10). Passing out at the ripe hour of 12:00 at our kick ass “Karaoke Extravaganza” Birthday party.

9). Being concerned that 80 jello shots held on the lap of passenger while driving to said party would constitute a citation for an “open container.”

8). The highlight of my day is when the Roto Rooter man came to clear a blockage in the main pipe so I could resume using the kitchen sink.

7). Actually knowing where to find the main pipe.

6). Having to run to the mall because I am out of my under eye wrinkle prevention cream.

5). Going through a whole bottle of under eye wrinkle prevention cream.

4). Discovering that my refrigerator is no longer solely occupied by liquor and condiments.

3). Spending 5 minutes in the morning searching for grey hairs and finding three.

2). Coloring my hair to cover up the grey instead of coloring my hair to cover up the dishwater blonde.

1). Obsessing over stupid identifiers and other lame reminders that I am no longer 18 (or 21, or soon to be 29 for that matter) instead of going to the bar to celebrate because I am, yet another year older. So if you’re looking to find me this Wednesday, March 16th go to a bar I’ll probably be there.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

My City's Smarter Than Your City...Plphttttt

According to the latest edition of the Men’s Journal, Minneapolis was voted America’s “Smartest City.” Apparently the judges failed to read my “Extreme Blonde Moment” entry in our blog. Whew.

http://www.mensjournal.com/feature/0504/bestPlaces.html

Monday, March 07, 2005

Where There's A Pill There's A Way.

It’s Monday night and being slightly bored I decided to take an interactive Adult ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) test. However, only making it to question 15 of the 70 or so odd questions before I became bored and decided rather to review the gossip column of Eonline leads me to believe that I should maybe be on some form of medication because there’s a pill for everything these days, right?

You’ve seen them on TV. Strange adds with blatant innuendos, like the erectile dysfunction add where a guy throws a football though a tire swing. Everyone has something wrong with him or her, anxiety disorder, depression, dysfunction of all sorts, work allergies, you name it, they have a pill for it. I even saw an add claiming to have a solution in pill form for the “night shift worker”, it went something like this; “Are you always tired? Do you sleep all day only to wake up in the evening? Are you tired of going to go to bed when your family is just getting up? Well we have the solution for you!” Are you kidding me? I have a solution, it’s called get a new job so you can work during the day, spend time with your family, and quit complaining about stupid shit.

It is so easy to fall for the latest quick fix for all our problems, or children’s problems for that matter. Speaking of, what has happened to kids these days? I’ll tell you why everyone and their brother has this new fangled ADHD, it’s because they don’t actually experience life. When I was a kid I was always outside with my friends. There was a group of us neighborhood “hoodlums” and we would all get together, play games, and participate in your harmless everyday, run of the mill tom foolery. Sure we had our share of trouble, like the time Chris burned his eyebrows off trying to light a firecracker, but in the end we were together forming friendships and interacting with each other. It seems like now friendship has been replaced with video games, television, and the internet. What social skills does one need to play video games or watch Fear Factor, and what are we doing when watching these new reality shows? We’re watching other people experience life instead of doing it for ourselves.

I am glad I grew up when I did, everything was more carefree back then and we were never worried about the “what ifs”. Case in point: I never wore a helmet while I rode my bike. (insert obvious joke here). In fact, I learned how to use the breaks on my cute pink Huffy all by myself. I had this super smart lesson plan to take it down the hill into the cul-de-sac and crash it into the curb until I figured it out. The funny visual that has lasted me 24 years and still makes me laugh out loud to this day is when I once missed the curb and went flying into the garage door of my neighbors home (she had bicycle track marks up the middle of her garage door for months). I was fine, maybe suffered an injured ego, but fine nonetheless. Hell, what am I saying, I was 5 years old, there was no ego. There was just satisfaction that I was now able to wear a band-aid on my knee, elbow, and forehead, and all my friends would think I was cool and dangerous. These days it would probably be cause for some sort of lawsuit, “Your garage door injured my daughters ego.” Either that or “My daughter has gone off the deep end driving her bike into garage doors, is there a pill for that?”

Maybe it’s because parents don’t have the time they once did for their children. They’re off working to afford that god awful enormous SUV, or to pay for their children to have the latest video games or cell phones, or to pay for the drug that will give them four hour erections. Maybe it’s because we have become immune to fun and instead are looking for the horrible “what ifs” instead of the "why nots." It seems that risk and adventure have left us with caution and terror.

Who knows? Maybe things will go back to the way they once were. Maybe someday children will find themselves lighting bottle rockets at their neighbors house, and launching water balloons through a slingshot and not have to worry about their parents pumping them full of medications because that’s what kids do even though some doctors may label it as “abnormal.” Or maybe it would be a good idea to just quit with the whole self medication craze, step back, take a good look at yourself (or your children) and realize that not everything is exactly the way you would like it to be. You may not be satisfied with yourself, but taking pills to mask the problem isn’t doing the problem any good. So begins my pledge to refrain from asinine pill popping and take life as it is, one unique experience after another. If there ever comes a time in my life where my profile fits the questions on some obscure television advertisement I will turn the other cheek. I will figure it out in my own way, on my own terms and without a doctor’s prescription. I have come a long way from the girl that learned how to ride her bike the dangerous way to the woman who still manages to crash and burn every once in a while in other areas of her life, because that’s what life is all about; one big garage door, you just have to realize when to open it up or when to step on the brakes.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Martha, Free as A Chimpanzee?

Hardened inmate, Martha Stewart has been sprung from the clink just in time for her to demonstrate to all of us domestic-happy women how to make realistic grass out of coconut in order to decorate a fashionable Easter dinner table.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed or not, but for the past six or so odd months the media has been stirring with the inability dig up any juicy information on Martha. There were no hair-grabbing brawls to report, or un-lady-like tantrums over the prison food. The inmates have just referred to her as a nice person who they have grown to actually like. Actually like? Could it be so? Mean, temper tantrum, assistant abusing, Martha… nice?
So in order to prove everyone wrong I was drawn to the live video feed on CNN.com showing her release. First of all I should have had a clue when her footage was directly under one that headlined “Chimpanzees Viscously Attack Man”. Upon seeing this I contemplated which one to view first and decided that Martha would probably be more dramatic. I was wrong. The video showed nothing but her leaving the prison and pulling into her driveway, and then shots of her in her kitchen, where I assume she whipped up a batch of marzipans and hot cocoa to spend her evening by the fire knitting sweaters for her new found friends at “Camp Cupcake.”
However, I fear this is just the beginning for poor Martha as she will be held hostage at her estate for another 5 months of "in house arrest", leaving only for 48 hours a week on work release. We will most probably be bombarded by shots of her in her garden, or walking her dogs which leaves us with nothing more than the thought of our own dreams of in house arrest on a 153 acre estate, life is tough for the domestic diva.
So Martha is back and we can all rest easy that from now on we will continue to be entertained and educated on the important things in life like how to prepare, decorate, cook, bake, and still be the life of the party, “It’s a good thing.”

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Gluten Free Day #6; An Ode to Toast

Ode to Toast
Toast, we used to be such good friends. With a little butter and jelly, you were the start to my day. Unselfish and tasty you gave yourself to me for nutrition and health. We were friends toast. How could you turn against me? I look at you now with contempt as I smell you in someone elses toaster, or see you on someone elses plate. Maybe there will be a time when we can meet again. A time when you no longer cause me pain and I can enjoy you all the same, because toast, you complete me.