Friday, December 30, 2005

I hate not eating to excess. Don't you?

It appears, at least by the groaning sound the elastic in my sweat pants are making, that I must have eaten most of the Christmas cookies I made. It seems like I had planned to give them away, but I forgot most of that part.

Oh, well. Back to join the New Year's weight loss sheep herd. Baaah.

You gonna eat that?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Ah'll Be Bahck

Resting. Recovering. Taking antibiotics. More later.

In the meantime a deep post-Christmas breath (in and out) and some thanks:

Thanks for coming. Thanks for giving. Thanks for reading. Thanks for writing. Thanks for caring. Thanks for asking. Thanks for thanking.

If I didn't ask, it's just because I'm me. If I didn't notice, I was probably far too concerned about what you thought about me. Thanks for understanding.

And thanks to the stealth Santa, who left us wine, ornaments and chocolate on our porch on Christmas day. How wonderful and mysterious.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Not completely death free, but includes the words "crunchy" and "Viagra"

I drive like death is around the corner. I may not look like I’m freaking out, and I may even drive faster than Captain America might like, but that doesn’t diminish the fact that my mind is constantly preparing for my fiery doom. (side note for English majors: ever notice that “fiery” rearranges the last two letters in “fire”?)

This constant anticipation of crunchy metal sounds leaves me with a lot of adrenalin while I am required to sit still and drive. The result: spinning wheels of brain matter, many random nerve firings, lots of radio fiddling. Talk radio is best for me, because it calms my brain and focuses some of the synapses towards something concrete, if not particularly constructive (although all the hours of NPR have made me a kick-ass trivia game player).

If NPR is hopelessly lost in a funk of Celtic folk singing, I’ll try the local liberal radio station. If the present liberal at the mike seems to be trying to do a backwards Rush impression, I’ll try the local comedy station. If they seem to be in a ten-minute block of herbal Viagra commercials, then I’m stuck with music, which does nothing for my adrenalin-pumped noggin, so I am forced to try to focus my thoughts on my own, which isn’t always successful.

I think of a lot of brilliant topics for this space, but they are gone as fast as the next thought speeds in.

Once, I saw a youngish guy walking down the sidewalk. It looked like he had the tips of his hair dyed blond. He had on one of those big, thick sweaters your mom gives you for Christmas. He had a doughy round face and was on the heavy side. And he was walking with the kind of jaunty step that catches your eye as you drive by.

I was so trapped in a sitting position with many long minutes of driving to go. I started trying to generate instances in which I could imagine not just being, but wanting to be, friends with this jauntily walking dude. Maybe if he was an editorial cartoonist. Not the fantasy comic type. I suppose they call themselves something else. Maybe if he was in a really good band. I mean lots of really cool band members look like complete geeks, so it’s not impossible. Improbable. Maybe impossible, owing to the fact that I was in Hazel Dell. He might be a successful artist with many sold-out shows, but I doubt it. Artists (successful or otherwise) usually take such care in dressing like artists. Well, I guess I’m either the exception to that rule, or that doesn’t really hold true.

Okay, I give up. He’s a talented, guitar-playing, master’s degree-sporting, comedic essayist with designs on a Senate seat. See, the moral to this story is that you shouldn’t judge a book by its tip-frosted hair.

Or he’s 30 and living on his sister’s couch because his parents threw him out for stealing beer money from them one too many times.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Message received...BUT NOT HEEDED.

It seems Animal Planet has been made aware of a certain cutting, yet witty and cute, critique of their little cable station. (By the way, I'm still out roughly $900 in vet bills thanks to them.)

They have chosen to respond by titling a recent Detroit Animal Cops episode "Piglet's Got to Go." They tried to disguise the obvious message by including a short vignette regarding a pot-bellied pig which was removed from a house because of a city-wide ban. Yeah. Whatever.

Game on.

Silent Night, Holy Yikes!

I don’t know if I mentioned it before, since I hardly ever talk about my dog (what?), but she barks maybe once a week. Never at the door, or Shelby’s (R.I.P.) favorite targets (i.e. phones, garage doors, UPS trucks, dust molecules, and mean looking dudes), except maybe the dust molecules, if they look particularly scary. She will, however, bark in frustration at basketball games if she is not invited to play.

All this to explain my surprise at watching her bark at baby Jesus last night on our pee walk. It might seem a more rational approach to the situation when I explain that the baby Jesus was part of one of those blow-up Christmas yard decorations that seem to be all the rage amongst the peppier and, let’s say, less discriminating yard decorators (although that might be a contradiction in terms). (Ms. Awfully Judgmental, line two….)

It probably didn’t help Annie’s composure that the whole thing was just being tilted into position as we turned the corner and happened upon it – the whole thing being the whole crèche scene with barn, Mary, Joseph and manger complete with smiling baby. Or it could be that she barked at the incongruity of it all: a plastic, lighted, fan-blown, primary-color, ode to capitalism, depicting the birth of the Prince of Peace and a big devotee of communal living. Or it could be that she was just confused because Joseph, clad in bright red, looked a lot like a young Santa Claus. Why is Santa looking on at the birth of Jesus? Of course, this ties up those two rather divergent Christmas stories quite well, doesn’t it?

I would dismiss the whole “Santa as Joseph” thing as a bad choice of colors and an overzealous depiction of the abundance of Joseph’s beard, but on the way back, I noticed that the same house sported a window painting (I know!), which depicted Santa, a passel of reindeer, and next to Santa, an angel, obviously approving and keeping watch over the reindeer flock by night. I kid you not.

Now, I’m not sure where to begin or end on the theological and/or political significance of this tableau. (Do I have to mention that the car in the driveway sported a W04 sticker?) Surely they are confusing Christianity with capitalism, or maybe its just a case of thinking that “A Visit from St. Nick” is a chapter of the New Testament. Discuss.

I don’t know. But Annie has requested that we find a different route until the holidays are over.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Overheard at the dermatologist's office

I guess this is a snapshot of how hard it is to be old. Or senile. Or both.

An old couple sat down across from me, and once they were good and bored, the old man looked at the old woman and said, "You didn't wear your heavy socks."

The old lady replies, "I didn't have time."

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Hello, Guinness?

Am I the first to complete a crossword puzzle while on the treadmill? No? Okay. Well, Actually, I didn't 100% complete it... Okay, nevermind.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Now With 99% Less Death

In the interest of not freaking out the delicate sensibilities of some of our readers, today's blog will be mostly death free. Can't promise full death scrubbing - it might creep in there somewhere...boooga-booga!

Today I bought my dog a dress. Okay, not a dress, but Annie makes even the most rugged outdoor wear look prissy.

(Cue hot techno runway music) "This scrumptious confection of a coat is by Outward Hound. It is rain-resistant, sports a convenient poo-bag pocket and reflective trim. It comes in lipstick red to match Annie's hot-hot greyhound-style collar."

Since she is Annie, she didn't fight the fitting. She just looked worried as usual (see picture). But taking her out walking was a little more difficult. She didn't think going outside dressed like that was a good idea at all. However, I insisted.

It's not raining buckets or snowing today, but I feel bad when it is. I get all bundled up while she stands there waiting to get soaked. Usually, once I open the door and show her the lousy weather, she tries to turn around and convince me that she can hold it for another day or two, no problem. So I'm doing this for her. She will thank me for this. Dammit.

Out we go, me pulling the leash, and Annie walking in tiny, careful steps as if she had pantyhose down around her knees, and looking around, hoping that the neighbor dogs don't see her like this.

After a while the pantyhose effect wore off a little and she was able to get used to the feel of the coat, although I still think she's concerned about her image. I think she was glad it was dark. Little does she know it's going back on tomorrow morning.

Shut up, it's for her own good!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Welcome, Anonymous

I noticed today while commenting on my own blog (that sounds ickier than it was) that I haven't been accepting anonymous comments. I've also noticed (Hello, Vanilla) that anonymous comments can be quite interesting.

And if my pigletish nature attracts similar types, then this blog would have the most comments to lose by rejecting commenters who may be too timid to leave a name.

So this blog now accepts comments from all you anonymi out there.

A joke courtesy of Liam McEneaney

I'm sure he won't mind:

"I like Triscuits. They're one scuit better than regular biscuits."

For more, see