Monday, October 31, 2005

Tell me something I didn't know...

You Are 40% Weird
Normal enough to know that you're weird...But too damn weird to do anything about it!
How Weird Are You?

From Hube

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Pumpkin Pop Art

Brought to you by Miss Peanut, and her flair for interior decorating. Never underestimate a 4-year old, people.

Introducing, the Pumpkins!

From right to left, we have Punk Pumpkin, Popstar Pumpkin, Princess Pumpkin, and Pothead Pumpkin.

We'll be carving ours later. The WCM goes to this site and this one to get patterns to transfer to his pumpkins. He's doing Darth Vader this year. I'm more of a traditionalist, and do the basic face. Since Miss Peanut isn't allowed sharp objects, she created the above tableau for your enjoyment. So, enjoy, dammit!

Saturday, October 29, 2005


I love Halloween.

I mean, think of it: what other holiday exists solely for the purposes of visiting your neighbors and getting candy from them? On what other holiday can you go door-to-door asking for chocolate and stand a chance of getting it? On what other holiday can you dress up as a Princess, a Cowboy, or a Power Ranger and not receive strange looks? Halloween rocks!

I think the reason I love Halloween so much, aside from the candy & costumes aspect, is that it's a holiday meant exclusively for children and those who remain young at heart. It's about using your imagination and stretching the bounds of reality for a night. It's playing dress-up outside your bedroom. It's all about gleeful revelry, despite its macabre beginnings. It's not about sorcery, necromancy, or the devil - it's about staggering home with a few friends, chilled to the bone, struggling under the weight of a pillowcase full of assorted confectionary. Get real, people. It's about fun.

Some of my best memories are of going trick-or-treating with the Sarahs on Halloween. Both of my best friends were named Sara(h) from 7th to 10th grade. We'd go trick-or-treating in their neighborhoods, because I lived in a slum. It was a lovely house on the inside, but it was in the middle of a slum. Dad got caught in an "urban renewal" trap. The renewal never really took place, but the place remained very, um, urban. Anyhoo, the Sarahs both lived in relatively posh neighborhoods, so there was candy galore.

We'd eat ourselves sick of sugar, crash into bed sometime in the wee hours after scouring Friday Night Videos for a glimpse of Duran Duran, and wake up cold and cranky for school the next day.
None of us turned out to be devil-worshippers - well, I didn't, and Sarah didn't, but I can't vouch for Sara, as I haven't heard from her since 1987. She probably didn't. Probably. But I digress. The point is, all we did, and all the vast majority of kids do, is have harmless fun. Loads of it. Sure, we gave the dentists something to do for the month afterwards, but they've got to make a living, too.

There's a school in Puyallup, Oregon that's banned Halloween. Another school in Newton, Massachusetts has done it, too. Fuckers.

It's a slippery fucking slope to Dullsville, people, and we're sliding down it.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Yes or No revealed!

Iced Coffee
Absolutely YES! Every morning I go to Dunkin Donuts and get a large iced
coffee with cream and sugar. I'm right particular about how it's prepared,
too. See, I like the cream mixed in before the sugar goes in. Then,
I just like them to dump the sugar on top and let it sift through the ice cubes
to the bottom of the cup. I don't like it stirred, either, as I feel like
the gritty sugar in each sip of coffee is a treat.

No. I just can't manage it. I'll clean when I have to, but I just can't manage to get things put away every day. Erma Bombeck said that tidying your house when your children were still at home was like shoveling snow in the middle of a snowstorm, or something like that. I agree. There's plenty of time for tidiness when it's just the WCM and me. Or just me.

Jessica Simpson
NO. I feel so bad for Nick. She's such a vapid, shallow, vacuous, self-centered twat. Plus, she can't sing. Her songs are like nails on a chalkboard for me.

Rainy days
YES. Now that fall has begun proper here, we've had a spate of rainy days. I love listening to the rain, watching it sluice down the hill in front of my house, and feeling the drops on the hood of my raincoat. Call it a throwback to my Welsh ancestry, but I love to feel the rain in the summertime. And the fall, too.

Kingdom of Heaven (movie)
Maybe. I haven't seen it yet, but considering that this is one of my favorite periods of history and it features Orlando Bloom (who is a BIG YES), it's bound to be decent. I'm renting it next Friday, when I'll have a day off.

Office Supplies
Oh, GOD YES!!! I will wander the aisles of Office Depot or Staples for fun, just fantasizing over the office I could put together. I love Post-it notes, and the tape flags! Tape flags, people! One of my favorite things in the world! Ooooh! And white out in a roller - ingenious! Aaaahh! Pens, pencils, markers, clipboards, desk calendars, stackable in-boxes!!! Yes, YES, YES!!!

I need a cigarette.

Buy one, get one free
Yes, if it's something I'd buy anyway. What I HATE about the BOGO, is when it's used to sell off useless crap that nobody wants in the first place. Like, here - if you've taken one of these shite items off our hands, we'll give you another one to show our appreciation.

That's what I think. I'm going to peruse the Office Depot circular now in the privacy of my bedroom.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Stealing an idea

It's true. I'm a thief. I'm stealing this from Tina. Answers will come after the poll closes.

  1. Iced Coffee
  2. Tidiness
  3. Jessica Simpson
  4. Rainy days
  5. Kingdom of Heaven (movie)
  6. Office Supplies
  7. Buy one, get one free

Stay tuned!

On a completely unrelated note, I've updated & rearranged my blogroll. There are a few more people I'll be adding in the next couple of days, so stay tuned!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Genetics are weird

We've already discovered how much I hate housecleaning. I believe I documented my aversion here, for all the internet to see. Even after that advert, I got no takers. Damn.

My father, with whom I lived after my parents' divorce, is not a neat-freak, but has an orderly soul. Things may not be dust-free, but they are arranged attractively and logically. My stepmother takes care of the dust and doesn't disturb the arrangement. They are a well-matched pair.

My mother, on the contrary, is quite tidy. She tried, in vain, to instill the values of "cleanliness is next to Godliness." I remain, to this day, a godless heathen. Quite proud of it, too. Mommie Dearest has my stepfather ruthlessly trained: he will start the laundry early so that it's finished, folded, and stowed before the first football game is on TV on Sunday. He calls himself the "Kitchen Bitch," as he's in charge of cleaning up the kitchen after Mom cooks. I quite like him. He takes the heat off me.

Even my mother's obsessive tidiness pales in comparison to my mother-in-law's obsessive-compulsive battle with grime. Before she broke her hip and had to be moved into a nursing home, my mother-in-law was hell on grime. The woman buffed skirting boards, shined the knobs on the stove, and attended to the shower grouting with a toothbrush. Weekly. She could tell if you had walked on the living-room carpet, because the hoover pattern was disrupted. The woman was downright scary. What's more, she enjoyed it. When, in the early days of our marriage, the WCM and I lived with her, she tried to "prepare me to be a wife" by teaching me how to clean.

Did I mention that by the end of the 2 years I lived with this woman, I was researching rare and untraceable poisons to put into her twice-daily Metamucil? This woman gives anal-retentive a new meaning!

Apparently, the clean gene skipped the WCM, too, as he's as much of a slob as I am. I have no problem with that.

Miss Peanut, though, LOVES to tidy and decorate. If you give her a new toy, the first thing she has to do is see where it will look best in her room. Then, she has to fuss with the packaging. After that, she'll play with it. She's not half particular about where her dolls are in her bed, either. She has them neatly lined up at the foot of her bed and leaning on the wall that her bed is pushed against. She maintains an internal rota of which dolly gets to sleep on the pillow with her, and never sleeps with the same one two days in a row. Scary, now that I think of it.

The part that really freaks me out, though, is the child's fondness for scrubbing toilets.

Even I clean the bathroom more-or-less daily. I scrub the tub every day, as Miss Peanut takes a bath, not a shower. Sometimes, if she's raring to go and I've not finished the tub, I'll squirt some cleaner in the toilet and hand her a brush.

The child has a blast. She sings and scrubs, swishes and warbles. She invents songs. She makes "Potty Soup," giving me a list of the invariably disgusting ingredients while vigorously stirring. The delight she experiences while cleanign the loo is something that I usually reserve for, well, shoe shopping or chocolate degustation. It's hard for me to believe that I could have birthed someone that likes cleaning. My mother, as you can guess, is tickled pink.

Genetics are weird, no getting around it.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Another Cant-Be-Arsed-to-Post Quiz

The Candy Flavored Condom!!
You are sweet. You have this good girl/boy persona,
but that's not so true in the bedroom. You aim
to please and making him/her happy makes you
happy. You like to be dominated but not to the
S&M level.
Best Position: Doggy style

Condoms!! what is your kind of condom AND what does it mean?( with pics not dirty sheesh!)
brought to you by Quizilla

Hmmmmmm. Fair point, well made.

Coincidentally, even if one doesn't use condoms - you know, if you're "Lebanese" - one can take this quiz. It's geared toward Homo Sapiens and Librarians, too.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

A Good Day

Today was a good day.

Everyone was awake and cheerful ahead of schedule. I didn't have to nag Miss Peanut to get dressed. She did it herself.

My coffee was ready and waiting at the Dunkin Donuts this morning. They know me there. That's probably a bad thing, but as long as it gets me my morning brew done to my exacting specifications, I'm ok with that.

School went well. I taught my first period all about weather in French. Woo hoo - il fait frais (enfin, et pas avant l'heure!) Then, in preparation for my IB class labeling a couple of classrooms with the French names for things (le pupitre - the student desk; la porte - the door, etc...), I examined the signs the students had made and discovered them in a jumble. Three sets of labels all mixed up higglety-pigglety.

No matter, said I. We'll play "Go Fish" to sort them out. And we did! My 4th period class and I played my version of "Go Fish" which I call "Tant Pis" (too bad!). There was no pile to draw from, so instead of going fishing for another, you just got told "tant pis!" They LOVED it, and we were having such a good time playing this game entirely in French that no one really noticed when the Principal walked in the room. When we finally noticed her, she had the biggest smile on her face and looked to be enjoying the sight of a classroom of students having fun in school. Damn, what a great time I had with that class.

My class after lunch went about the process of finishing up labeling the school. This time, they labeled the common areas: classrooms, elevators, library, etc... as well as making signs for the individual floors. This year, we're in a high-rise building (7 floors!) while our school is being renovated. It's fun.

After school, I went to the craft store to get a few supplies for the Scrapbooking club that I run on Wednesdays after school. The WCM called and, get this, offered to take me and Peanut out to dinner! Mark this on your calendars, people. He volunteered to pay for someone to prepare a meal, and it wasn't anyone's birthday.

We had a great meal at the Charcoal Pit. If you're a carnivore, like me, and you appreciate a finely made hamburger, like me, then the Charcoal Pit is the place to go. Only the Original one on Concord Pike, mind you, as the other ersatz Charcoal Pits just don't measure up. Trust me on this. I wouldn't lie about food. Sex, I'd lie about. Weight, I'd lie about. Uma Thurman, I'd lie about. But not food.

Only one minor snafu marred the day - Peanut had an "accident" and was out of panties. She threw a hissy fit at being forced to go "panty free" for the night. Luckily, there were fresh panties in the dryer, so that disaster got sorted. I've been catching up on the laundry after the pantyhose-and-skirt fiasco that was last Friday. And the hissy fit actually made me laugh. You try listening to a 4-year old wailing "But I don't want to go panty-free!" and not laugh.

Before logging on to visit some of my favorite people, I had a lovely cup of tea, Earl Grey, hot and 3 Oreo cookies, dunked 3 times each to ensure optimum meltability and texture. Heaven.

So here I am, blogging about nothing. I can't really complain. And while this is great for me personally, it makes for a stultifyingly boring blog post. I'll do better tomorrow, I promise.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Book Review, sort of.

I read a pretty good book yesterday - Blue Smoke by Nora Roberts. It had a good story, great character development, and was an overall great read.

The only thing that I couldn't quite get over was the name of one of the characters: John Minger.

I wouldn't have thought twice about this before I started reading Tina's blog. Now I can't help but think of other names just like it. Tom Tosser? Willy Wanker? Tammy Twat?

Still, if you like romance novels, you should give it a read.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Aunt Flo, you fucker...

Today was possibly the shittiest day I've had in months. And I do mean that literally.

I knew it was going to be bad when all I wanted to do was sit on the edge of the bed and whimper at the cramping in my abdomen. The bloat was so bad that I just wanted to give up and call in fat. I mean sick.

Then there was the laundry issue. I've been very lax with the laundry, so all I had to wear were a few skirts & dresses, all of which necessitated the wearing of hose. To make matters worse, I only had Control Top pantyhose, which squeezed the bloat in my abdomen into a lovely and attractive spare tire above my skirt's elastic waistband. Loose top, looser button down shirt over top of that, and I still felt fat. Well, fatter.

I was moving slow, so I was into work 5 minutes later than usual, putting various feathers in a bunch. It's amazing what havoc 5 minutes can wreak.

About halfway through the day, I realized I just wasn't going to make it. I talked to my assistant Principal, who gave me permission to go on home. I think the naked face helped - I really do look ill when I don't wear makeup.

At home, with a heating pad and a megadose of Aleve, I reaped another benefit of Aunt Flo's visit: the watershed. After retaining water for two days, I found myself leaking liquids from every possible orifice - tears, snot, sweat, among others - as the water sought a way out of my body. Ready to just end my life in a dramatic fulminating shower of bodily fluids, I had a good whiny pity party and ate chocolate. Naps a-plenty followed. As did a dinner heavy on the beef (to replace the iron what I've been losing) and greasy saltiness (because I already catered to the chocolate craving portion of Aunt Flo's visit). Meatball sub and Old Bay fries - possibly Aunt Flo's favorite dinner.

I feel better now, and am just about rid of that nasty old slag Aunt Flo.

Thank God, else I'd write really disgusting posts.

Thursday, October 13, 2005


I've been eating pistachio nuts and throwing the shells into a white plastic cup.

I've also been drinking ice water from another white plastic cup.

Fuck me if I haven't just discovered I've been absently tossing pistachio shells into my ice water!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Witching Hour draws ever nearer...

Bloodthirsty Ravenous Orphan-Nabbing Wimp-Eating Nightmare

Sorry for all the little quizz-y things, but I just can't be arsed to come up with anything to say.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Voulez-vous coucher avec moi ce soir?

You're Brigitte Bardot!

What Classic Pin-Up Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Oui, bebe! C'est moi!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

10 miles! IBarefoot! In the snow! Uphill! Both ways!

During my 5-hour stint in Brew Ha Ha yesterday, I was acutely aware of the rest of the clientele.

I chose to sit at the far end of the bar, which put me in the perfect people-watching position. I was disturbed by a number of things, which I choose to share with you today. Bear with me, people. I'm not as vitriolic as some or as eloquent as others, but I'm as annoyed as both.

What is with the Stepford College Students today? Way back when in the previous century when I was in college, if we rolled out of bed, dragged on a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt, and threw our hair in a ponytail, we were ready for class. I saw college students in skirts and hose for chrissakes! With makeup! And perfect hair! They sat in lovely little ultrafeminine enclaves, with prim handbags perched next to them in their chairs, delicately sipping cappuccino and discussing art history. Yes, I eavesdropped. If you have that much time to put into your appearance, ladies, you'd better be making a 4.o GPA, not arguing that, duh, Manet and Monet are the same person, you just spelled it wrong, Ashley! That's all I have to say.

Also, since when has the notebook computer become de rigeur in the University set? Everybody and her sister had a cute little laptop sitting in front of her, industriously tapping away at the latest term paper or IM. And the cellphone not to far away, chirping every now and then to keep the peeps informed. Now, I didn't use the chisel and stone tablet, that, if you listen to him, my father used. I had notebooks and an array of colored pens - I color-coded my notes. I was a real geek (or swot, if you prefer). I had to earn my laptop the old-fashioned way: I married for it. I have the WCM's old one.

What's with the disposable income these kids have, too? A ginormous Mochaccino cost $4. How come these kids have $4 to throw away on coffee? Back in the day, I lived on dining hall fare and hobo soup out of my hot pot. If I had $4 to spare, I did laundry, and it sure as hell wasn't skirts and hose. We drank tap water, snacked on crackers and squirt cheese, and, on rare occasion, pooled our cash and splurged on a pint of Ben & Jerry's to share between us. For those years when I paid for my own education and commuted (5 of the 6 non-consecutive years of my education), I had to eliminate luxuries to pay for gasoline and books. Lattes were soooo out of reach.

Lastly, anyone over the age of 30 in the coffeehouse was subjected to an extended critical appraisal, culminating in raised-eyebrowed eye-rolling like, "whatever, dude." Like I was crashing a party at Lambda Chi Delta. Like I'd be caught dead at Lambda Chi, or any of its fellows. Dude, like, who's the grandma at the bar? Doesn't she, like, know there's, like, rules about who can come here? Dude, is she, like, working? Duuuuuuuude. That's, like, soo wrong.

Perhaps it was my sweatpants and sneakers. It could have been the grading and record-keeping done with a pen. It could be that I was just OLD. Whatever.

Move over, Dad, I'm joining the chorus. In my day, we had to walk 10 miles to school every day, barefoot, in the snow, uphill, both ways, carrying our stone tablets and chisels on our backs...

Friday, October 07, 2005

Dashed against the rocks of my life,

were my plans for my fabulous day off.

To preface this monstrously hideous day, let me say that two days ago, the brakes on my car started making this hideous grinding sound. I knew, in the deepest recesses of my heart, that my idealistic plans were doomed. I just didn't know how cruelly they'd be crushed.

This morning, after dropping Miss Peanut off at school, I called the car dealership and managed to get an appointment scheduled to get the brakes replaced. I figured they were pretty much shot, and held out little help for the rotors as well. Arriving there at 8:30 am, I relinquished the key and took the lovely dealership shuttle to a coffeehouse (Brew Ha Ha) a few miles away on Main Street in Newark.

For those of you that don't know Delaware intimately - and why should you, I ask? - Newark is the home of the University of Delaware. I attended for 6 non-consecutive years, earning two degrees (Bachelor of Arts and Masters of Arts), and did so paying my own tuition, thank you very much. More on that later.

I had anticipated the wait and had brought papers to grade: 66 French tests and 50ish French projects (party invitations - woo woo!). I had also brought my new book. You know, the one I'd planned on reading all day today?! Settling in with my work at 9 am with a Grande Mochaccino (yum!), I plowed steadfastly through projects and tests until 11:30, when my sandwich arrived: chicken salad with mesclun lettuce and tomato on a fresh, still-warm-from-the-oven whole-grain baguette. To borrow a phrase from the Sniffy One, it was fuckin' delish!

Anyway (thanks Piggy), after lunch, with a fresh mochaccino in hand (iced, this time, for variety's sake), I continued grading until I was done all 66 fucking tests. The good news: the class of rocket-scientists I have in Period 1 all did swimmingly, with a beautiful downwardly-sloping hill of a results curve. Periods 2 & 3, though, had Ws for their results graphs, with the right side of the W reaching up and up and up into the stratosphere. Period 3 did marginally better with period 2, though. Uh oh, tangent...

So, feeling righteous with my completed grading, I headed out for some well-earned shopping, having still not heard from the car dealership. I ducked into the teacher-supply store and checked out their extremely meager offerings in the French section. Apparently, the store feels that we are being overrun by Mexicans and has stocked mainly Spanish materials. Whatever.

After my stop there, I called the shuttle and hitched a ride back to the dealership where the car was finished and the bill ready for my inspection.

It read $966.00. For my international readers, that is approximately 548.70 pounds. Or, in the language of the World's Cheapest Man "a fucking lot! Jesus Christ, woman! You got hosed!" All in all, Camryn Malibu DuHadaway (yes, I named my car) needed new brakes, 2 new rotors, a new caliper for the one rotor, 2 new front tires, a four-wheel alignment, and a brake fluid flush. She drives like a dream now.

I did get home in time to pick up Miss Peanut and drop her off at my parents' house in time for the weekend fun-fest that is a sleepover at the Grenfell House. I also got to go out to dinner with the WCM (and a visit to Trader Joe's, and a quick trip to Borders for some more caffeine - I'm lit up tonight!).

My poor wallet is looking anorexic at the moment, and I never did get to start my book or have Chinese food.

Still, in the words of Miss Scarlett, "Tomorrow is another day."

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Weekend update

In a revolutionary move, my parents, who normally plan three years in advance, had to cancel their outing with Miss Peanut and changed it to an overnight this coming Friday. While the overnight is a far better deal, as it provides time alone with the WCM, it meant that I didn't get my free time today.

So, it was quality time with Miss Peanut today. Market, Costco, Craft stores, children's TV, handwriting workbook, improvisational dance - we did it all. I swear, I love that kid so much it's nauseating. I didn't mind the change in plans so much because I'll have a day to myself on Friday, when the State Teacher's Inservice is. I don't have to go, and I'm every happy about it. I've worked out my itinerary. Here it is, for your inspection:
  • Be awakened by Miss Peanut, 7:15 am, two hours later than usual.
  • Get Peanut dressed, get myself dressed-ish - it doesn't matter what I wear, as it will all be coming off when I get home so I can jump back into my jammies and be comfy - and get out the door.
  • Hit the Dunkin Donuts for a large iced coffee. Get Miss Peanut a donut.
  • Drop Miss Peanut off at nursery school.
  • Drive to the video store and rent Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
  • Sing all the way home at the top of my lungs.
  • Watch the movie. Try to make sense of it. Try not to be irritated when it deviates from the book. Because it will. They always do.
  • Call out for Chinese food for lunch. General Tso's chicken, pork fried rice, egg roll. Have enough leftovers for dinner, too.
  • Start reading A Breath of Snow and Ashes.
  • Pick up Miss Peanut, and deliver her to her Grandparents' house.
  • return home, read some more.
  • Ignore the return of the WCM until he gets in a lather over my not having dinner ready.
  • Fix the wanker some eggs. Eat the Chinese leftovers.
  • Read, read, read. Sigh a big sigh over Jamie Fraser. Wish he were real. Wish he fancied chubby american women. Wish he were here.
  • NOOKIE! With WCM. Not Jamie. Damn.
  • Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Ooooh, Jamie! Just there, yes! Yes! YESZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Looks like fun, doesn't it? Hope it all happens. Stay tuned for the salacious details!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

It's got to be the face.

I seem to have one of those faces that make people want to tell me things. Things I'm really not that interested in, either. A few examples of these things are:
  • The nasty effects of IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) after eating salad. Really. By a former professor at lunch. Thanks, truly.
  • That my conversation partner is gay, and that I'm the first person they've ever told. Thanks again. That's great. So far, my tally is up to three times on this one. I've no problem with homosexuality, but I do struggle for an appropriate response. What do I say? You go, girlfriend?
  • That they are not gay, but feels that they are a woman trapped in a man's body, and is a closet transvestite saving up for "the chop." This lovely(wo)man told me because s/he admired my style and wanted some fashion & makeup tips. We actually went clothes shopping after this, with him/her in full drag. S/he was not pretty.
  • That they have discovered that his/her partner is having an affair. Just today, again, on this one. Hire a lawyer. Leave me out of it.
  • That they have had an abortion (or two, or five). Did I ask? No.
  • That they have been trying to get pregnant for eons, but their husband's sperm just aren't that mobile. Spare me!
Fascinating, eh? I certainly don't encourage these sorts of confessions, and they are usually followed by the phrase "I don't know why I'm telling you this." It can't be my talkative manner, because I don't rattle on much in company. It can't be the general topic of conversation, either, as I don't usually expound on transvestism or infertility. It's got to be the face.

What's worse is that they aske me for advice. Like I have any idea what to tell a woman trapped in a man's body? Or recommend dietary modifications for an IBS sufferer? Or tell an infertile woman how to get pregnant? Although boxer shorts and a turkey baster do spring to mind...

Short of plastic surgery, I think I'm doomed to hear these unsettling confessions for the rest of my life. I should move to Europe, I think, where the natural reserve would be enough to keep people out of my oh-so-open face.