The Tupperware Caper

I know I have an innocent face, but my MIL has apparently seen right through my otherwise-convincing facade, and has divined that I am a Tupperware-stealer. Even I didn't realize that this numbers amongst my other considerable flaws.

Allow me to direct your attention to the picture for a moment. What you see is apparently a very precious artifact suitable for display in the Smithsonian's Food Storage section. Perhaps you'll see it yourself in person some day. Note the rare Harvest Gold bowl topped with the Dusty Rose "burping" lid. Indeed, it is a remarkable specimen, and yes, I had it in my kitchen.

You're probably wondering how I came to obtain this amazing objet d'art, so I'll explain. On the Sunday following my FIL's big surprise party, we all rolled on down south of town to Maison d'Inlaws for a barbecue. So abundant were the side dishes that I was asked if I'd like to take some home for the kids to eat, and I was pleased to pack up some of the grub. I took some cole slaw in an old Cool Whip container, a cold spaghetti salad in an old sherbet tub, and some baked beans in the much-admired non-disposable Tupperware bowl.

Fast-forward to Thursday. G went to have lunch with his Mom and Grandma (who's visiting from Denver). During the lunch, he was admonished thusly by the MIL:

"Make sure Adrienne gives me my Tupperware back."

Take note, bloggers. I am not to be trusted with food-storage containers. I was so miffed when I heard this that if we hadn't been scheduled to spend Friday evening with Grandma (a perfect opportunity to return the heirloom), I would have FedExed it to her.

On Friday, what do you think was the 1st thing my MIL asked G?

"Did Adrienne bring my Tupperware back?" In case you're wondering, I was standing right there.

As butt-clenchingly irritating as the whole thing has been, at least it makes her Christmas present buying a cinch. You guessed it: Tupperware!

Happy Thanksgiving to You All

Before I start freaking out over the food preparation so integral to the day's gratitude acknowledgment banquet, I'm permitting myself a quick post to thank you all for the fun, education, and entertainment we've shared these last months.

I really mean it. Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving!


PS - I'll have lots of things to share when things slow down a bit around my house. I got my hair color corrected (well, sort of), had a bra fitting, went in 1/2 for a tattoo for Mom's 70th birthday (pictures will be posted!), and more.

A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Radical

I’ll admit this up-front: I’m not really a little bit country, but I can't resist a moderately well-crafted Donnie & Marie reference. I am, however, a little bit radical, as I’ll explain in painful detail below. Quick, get the Motrin!

I thought up the idea for this post on Saturday as I was on my way to Whole Foods to buy my Tea Tree Oil and Cinnamon toothpaste, which is fluoride free…on purpose. I know several people who think I’m off my rocker for not wanting to max out on this chemical, which we’ve all been brought up to believe is so good for our teeth. Besides, the government is supposed to take care of us, right? Or is that right?

Since being diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease a few years back, I’ve started to really question what’s in my food and the products I use daily. The reason those things are connected is because managing this condition is easy, but it requires careful control of sodium. If you’re even a little alert, you can easily find millions of ways that seemingly normal foods are smacked full of the stuff. For example, chicken that is packaged with the encouraging fine-print “Enhanced With Broth!” is really chicken that someone has shot full of salt water to up the weight and thus, the price, and inadvertly, the sodium. Tricky, tricky!

As I’ve worked to manage this condition, I’ve also begun to question other “normal” “enhancements” that are made to the things we consume, and fluoride is one of those things. I won’t go into all the details here, but I do submit a few things for your consideration:

The studies linking fluoride consumption to dental health that are the basis for municipal water fluoridation were conducted in the 1940’s, and although longitudinal studies haven’t borne out the efficacy of this addition, fluoridation has persisted.

Why? It’s clear, if you ask me.

Fluoride is an industrial by-product. The companies that produce this by-product would have to dispose of it in compliance with EPA regulations if they were not able to sell it (yes, SELL it) to municipalities to dump into the water. Those companies have deep pockets, deep pockets lead to lobbyists, lobbyists lead to questionable policies that may or may not be good for you.

While these are valid arguments, what bothers me most is the brainwashing and compulsory nature of the whole thing. In essence, fluoridation is medication without consent. If I drink the same amount of water was G does, then the concentrations in my body will be higher than the concentration in his body by dint of size alone. What if I want to drink water that only has water in it?

There is no other situation I can think of, apart from the military, where Americans who are in complete possession of all their faculties can be made to take a medication or ingest a chemical. The fact that no one questions it is even scarier. It would be outrageous if the government decided that statin drugs are good for heart health, so our water supply will henceforth be loaded up with Lipitor, wouldn't it?

So now you know; I’m a little bit radical and have some kooky thoughts rolling around in my head. Besides, that Tea Tree Oil & Cinnamon toothpaste tastes amazing and has the consistency of tub caulk, which is surprisingly agreeable. Being radical doesn’t have to be unpleasant, after all.

Retarded Grandparents

Someone sent this email to me, and I thought it was too cute not to share.

After Christmas, a teacher asked her young students how they spent their holiday away from school. One child wrote the following:

We always used to spend the holidays with Grandma and Grandpa. They used to live in a big brick house but Grandpa got retarded and they moved to Florida. Now they live in a tin box and have rocks painted green to look like grass. They ride around on their bicycles and wear name tags because they don't know who they are anymore.

They go to a building called a wreck center, but they must have got it fixed because it is all okay now. They do exercises there, but they don't do them very well. There is a swimming pool too, but all they do is jump up and down in it with hats on.

At their gate, there is a doll house with a little old man sitting in it. He watches all day so nobody can escape. Sometimes they sneak out, and go cruising in their golf carts.

Nobody there cooks, they just eat out. And, they eat the same thing every night --- early birds. Some of the people can't get out past the man in the doll house. The ones who do get out, bring food back to the wrecked center for pot luck instead of birds.

My Grandma says that Grandpa worked all his life to earn his retardment and says I should work hard so I can be retarded someday too. When I earn my retardment, I want to be the man in the doll house. Then I will let people out, so they can visit their grandchildren.

The Dog Doo Detective

Warning: This is a hard-hitting post about dog poo. If you do not want to read about dog poo, I don't blame you, and I won't know if you just sneak out of here.

Go ahead...I'm not looking! For those of you who stayed...

I have a variety of uneviable jobs around the house, including:
  • Grocery Getter - Responsible for the eats of all humans and hounds.
  • Toilet Paper Replacer - Who else is going to do it?
  • Uni-Brow Separator - Because only Frida can pull off that look.
  • Ear Hair Trimmer - 'Nuff said.
  • Toenail Dremmeler - If only I could train the dogs to do this themselves!
  • and yes, Dog Doo Detective.

Believe it or not, I assumed this duty/doody by choice, because I think the quality and quantity of a dog's, uh, output says a lot about the state of the dog. It also tells me how I need to adjust his diet. Before I go explain, let's all pause a moment to reflect on how happy we are that there's no picture to accompany this post. You're welcome, my friends.

  • Constipation - It's time to whip out the plain canned pumpkin. No dog-inclusive family should be without this in the cupboard, if you ask me.
  • Too Small - More veggie mix to add some bulk.
  • Too Hard - Add more fatty meats.
  • Too Loose - (I actually haven't run across this yet). Assuming worms weren't the cause, which I'd want to rule out, I'd probably do more necks and let the lean meaty bones do their work.
  • The Big D - Cooked chicken and rice is the ticket for this, and I need to pick up a few cans to keep next to my emergency pumpkin, because you never know when this one might hit!
  • Last but certainly not least - Ribbon-Poo - The name says it all, and if you see this variety, it's time to check those glands or roll to the vet. Greyhounds aren't prone to anal gland problems, but better safe than sorry.

If you've read all of this, congratulations. You just might be a Dog Doo Detective, yourself.

Pez Dispenser Time Machine

What a kooky title...I'm seriously proud of myself!

As you probably know, I'll be having company for Turkey Day, beginning on Monday. Even though that's the case, I'd hate to leave the ol' blog dry heaving until my return, so I'm implementing the Pez Dispenser Time Machine concept. Starting...NOW!

What this means is that every post you'll be reading over the next week or so will be written in advance and dispensed automatically using the publishing options feature. I actually prefer to think of this as a virtual time machine powered by the magical energy of unicorns and fairy-dusted pink electrons, but you're free to envision it in a more practical way, of course.

However you choose to imagine it, please stay tuned for such topics as:

The Dog Doo Detective
That Darn Dickens!
The Tupperware Caper...and more!

Of course I'll try to sneak in some real-time posts, too, just to keep things in context, but either way, you won't be lacking in your Vitamin A.

Pushing My Buttons

After almost 18 years of marriage, G does know how to push my buttons, and sometimes he even does so without knowing it. A good example of this took place on our way home from the SEGC meeting on Wednesday night.

As I've blogged previously, I hate when people point out that I am glue-stick white from my scalp to the tips of my toes. Be that as it may, we had the following conversation in the car.

Him: "You look super-freakin' white tonight. Extra white."

Me, not hiding my irritation well: "What are you talking about?"

Him: "You know, you look like an extra from that vampire movie, you know the one, Talking to The Vampire."

Me: "I think you mean Interview With a Vampire."

Him: "Yeah, that's it...maybe it's the hair."

How am I insulted? Let me count the ways!

1. I know I'm white. In case you're wondering, I'll still be pale tomorrow. And basically every tomorrow forever.

2. I'd like to think that if I had been cast for such a movie, I'd at least get a speaking part and not be an extra.

3. I know the black hair is a disaster...does he have to keep reminding me?

4. Last but not least: Talking to the Vampire? Really? Maybe G knows something I don't know, like maybe that was Anne Rice's working title for the book, or not...because that title STINKS!

Since I'm grievously insulted by the whole thing, I'll also take this opportunity to debunk another one of G's illusions: it's not flan & gypsum, it's flotsam & jetsam.

Addicted to Wordles

Yes, I know I've "wordled" before, but I just can't help doing it again. Since the wordle is based on how many times certain words are used in your blog, it's an ever-changing kaleidoscope of linguistic frequency algorithms. Just's just fun, ok?

If you want to create your own, the title of this post links to the site that does all the work for you. By the way, the name of the font shown above is "Loved by the King". Well, G, I guess that would be you!

Six More Things

Ah, memories…remember the last meme we had? Since the Six Things People Don’t Know About Me was so much fun, I’m reviving the concept with Six Things I’d Change If Money Were No Object.

In case you’re not familiar with the meme concept, here’s a definition: a blog meme is a question or topic that’s started by one person, who then “tags” other bloggers to answer the same question or address the same topic. The people tagged by the first person then tags others. It’s a form of viral fun that would never have been possible if Al Gore hadn’t invented the internet. Thanks, Al!

Without further ado, here are my Six Things I’d Change If Money Were No Object.

1. I’d quit my job, and I’d do it with style. Since I have all the cash I need in this scenario, I’d invest in a flamboyant pink rhinestone pantsuit such as might be worn by the love child of Liberace and Dolly Parton, and I’d top it off with a red beehive wig with a white cowgirl hat perched atop. Even though I hate to fly, I’d get a first-class ticket and limo service to the corporate office, and I’d sashay up to the executive suite, belt out a rousing rendition of Take This Job and Shove It, tender my resignation letter out of my décolleté, shout “Kiss My Grits” a la Flo from Mel’s Diner, and I’d mosey on out the door. I hate to think what I might do if I didn't like my job.

2. I'd convince G to sell the business. Without our pesky money-garnering activities, we could pal around together endlessly. We'd spend our time helping with greyhound rescue, taking classes like cooking and welding and whatever suited us, and we'd shop and travel and have loads of laughs.

3. The cars would be next to go. First, I'd get rid of Otto VonCrapp (my car), and I'd replace him with a 1964 Ford Falcon Futura convertible. I'd get G a '65 Mustang Fastback coupe with pony interiors, or a Shelby Cobra. We'd also get some kind of tricked out hybrid SUV for road trips and dog hauling, but I haven't given that nearly the daydream time I've devoted to the muscle cars, so the details are sketchy.

4. Home renovations! Once we had a ton of free time and sweet wheels, I'd have all the things done to my house we've discussed since we bought the place, which includes landscaping, replacing the driveway, having the exterior stairs redone, rewiring the electrical system, new plumbing, and a new workshop for G's hobby of making furniture.

5. From the vanity file, I'd have a little work done. Suffice it to say that I'd no longer have more chins than a Chinese phonebook. Oh, what a happy day that would be!

6. Finally, I'd take the boys on trips to far-flung exotic locales. We'd try to speak the language, eat the local cuisine, and see the sights. I'd document it all in as funny a way possible in my book A Broad's Adventures Abroad, which I have yet to pitch to an agent, but I've got plenty of time for that.

Thanks for it's your turn! I hereby tag Mom, Alex, Jen, Stephen, Maria, and Zan.

Another Special Day

The past week has been a birthday fandango around here, and today is no exception as I wish my boy Bruno a Happy 5th Birthday. Bruno, formerly known as Butterfly Flight, was the most successful racer in his litter of six, and ran 137 races, winning 15 and placing 2nd in 26. Butterfly Flight was a standout as a racer, and I’m proud of his professional accomplishments.

As successful as he was at the track, Bruno really hit his stride as a friend and companion for our family. We chose him specifically because he was so gentle with our elderly dog Cosmo, and he even allowed the old gent to walk right under him when we first met in January. He was a perfect companion for Cosmo during his last days, and a great comfort when the Cos left us, following us from room to room, always ready to offer a lean or lay his head on our laps.

Wonderfully laid-back and calm, he’s a great Ambassadog at Meet & Greets, and his striking good looks never fail to attract some attention. On the other hand, he’s very protective of his home and family, and is part of that rare fraternity of the guard-dog greyhound. I won’t soon forget the day I let him into the back yard not knowing Mark the exterminator was out there; I heard the most alarming barking and growling and found that Bruno had Mark cornered and cowering against the house. As laid-back as he is, Bruno is no pushover, something I can’t help respecting.

Of course Bruno has my love as well as my respect, and it’s really his gentle heart and sweetness that I love most. As my introduction to this wonderful breed, I’d never hesitate to add another retired racer to my family, and it’s because of Bruno that we adopted Hoover to complete our family.

Happy Birthday, Mr. B., you’ll always be a champion to us!

My Co-Workers

One of the distinct perks of the virtual office is the ability to choose your own office mates, rather than having that decision made by some uncaring, remote hiring authority. My colleagues don't gossip by the water cooler, stink the place up by microwaving garlic-laden frozen entrees, or steal my pens. I submit this picture as proof of their impeccable professional behavior in the office.

The guest bed is behind my computer desk in my office, and this is how Bruno & Hoover pass the time while I'm working. Note that a collar is all that's required to be in compliance with my business casual dress code. For the dogs, that is.

Weekend Update

This has been a helluva weekend and a bit of a long one, hence the lack of postings. Heneater be damned, I’m back!

I’m starting with Thursday, which probably included the funniest moment of the week. Because we’re having company over the next few weeks, we decided to engage a house cleaning service to cut down on the preparations. It was awkward, to say the least, since I’ve never had this sort of service and I was working from my home office downstairs while the cleaners were working on the upstairs. During the process, I could hear the ladies chatting through the vents, which was fine, except that at one point I heard one of them say, “Ewwww gross!”. I often think that myself while cleaning, but I have to wonder what, exactly, they had found that was so disgusting. It was mortifying and funny at the same time.

Friday I took the day off because Garrett’s sister Kris and her kids were set to arrive mid-afternoon, and I wanted to run some errands and buy some groceries. As I was making my appointed rounds, I gave myself a terrible headache singing Total Eclipse of the Heart in the car. As if I’ve ever lived in a powder keg, much less gave off sparks. Ridiculous!

Saturday’s party for the FIL went off without a hitch, and he was completely surprised. We had family from as far as Denver, Dallas, and Mobile who came in for the shindig, but still we managed to catch him unawares. The surprise was almost spoiled in the morning, though, as G’s other two sisters were shopping at CVS when my FIL actually entered the store to make a purchase of his own, causing the sisters to have to crouch in the back of the store until he left. Close call, indeed.

On the subject of the other two sisters, they each brought their men with them on the trip. Kendra’s fiancé seems to be a nice, down-to-earth sort of fellow, so I’m glad for the two of them. Kayla, who is 25, is dating a man who appears to be in his late 40’s, and who is also clearly, obviously, and apparently gay. Although I’m not the only one who made this observation, I take full responsibility for it, and I’m prepared to stand by it until such time as we catch him in the arms of another man or hear him singing the soundtrack of Rent. I’m just sayin’.

On another note, Mom celebrated her 70th birthday yesterday, prompting an in-depth discussion on the difference between the terms: old vs. antique, used vs. vintage. I much prefer antique and vintage, don’t you? Happy Birthday, Mom!

All in all, a successful weekend. As I mentioned last week, the fence is moving right along, with the two sides essentially complete. Complete enough that the dogs can’t escape, which is paramount. Hooray, G!

This week promises yet more fun an excitement as we prepare for Mom and Kevin to make the scene at our casa. In the meantime, have a groovy week!

Unflattering Word Verification

All I wanted to do is post an innocent comment on a blog, and I was unfairly confronted with what I consider to be a mildly insulting word verification.

"heneater" that all you've got? Is this supposed to hurt my feelings?

Here's the deal, Blogger: if I get a word verification that says "hamface" or "meatbutt", I'm out of here. Fair warning!

Ikea & Ding Dongs

Last night's agenda included lots of errands, starting with a trip to Ikea. While G loves Ikea, I have a love/hate relationship with this Swedish-flat-pack-megastore. I'll start with the bad news:

The Hate:

  • The whole experience is a hassle, from the parking lot to the maze-like layout, to the checkouts.

  • It's virtually impossible to go there without buying something that wasn't on the list, and I always spend more than I'd planned.
The Love:
  • I can buy cheap glasses and plates, so that I don't freak out when one gets broken or chipped.

  • Candles - ridiculously cheap.

  • An unrivaled selection of organizational buckets.

  • A pretty decent cafeteria that offers a delicious mozzarella, red pepper, and basil focaccia sandwich.
Last night, as I was enjoying the aforementioned focaccia sandwich at the Ikeateria, Jared piped up and said, "Well, I found out today that I can put a whole Ding Dong in my mouth.".

After the moment of silence that normally follows such an ambiguous declaration, I asked, "You can put what in your mouth?".

"A Ding Dong...Mom, it's a little chocolate cake! Geez!"

Like it's my fault I didn't know what he meant. You should have seen the Argyle sweater he was wearing.

Find the Hound

Can you find the hound?

Still don't see him?

Brindle is good camoflage, isn't it?

Springtime Fresh Improvisation

As we all know, I work from my home office and I love it.

What’s not so great is that the bathroom outside my office is the main can used by the kids, and they are responsible for cleaning and stocking it. Needless to say, sometimes it just doesn’t happen, and I’m waiting for the Skankville Texaco to call and tell me they want their bathroom back.

That’s not the worst of it.

So I go to use the bathroom and I’m chagrined to find that there’s no toilet paper (I noticed this too late, of course). Great…now what?

Oh, I know, Kleenex! Um, there’s no box in here, either. What is this, a 3rd world country? This just keeps getting better and better.

Ok, let’s look in the trash can. Candy wrappers…nope! Soda can…no wonder I’ve seen ants down here. Tissue that someone’s already blown his nose on…last resort, we’ll set it aside.

And then, like a beacon of hope, I spied my savior in the bottom of the trash can – a used dryer sheet. This is no way to start a day, I’m telling ya.

Weekend Update

As we’re edging ever closer to the upcoming family get-togethers, the to-do lists are growing accordingly. While I’ve failed miserably at finding a wagon wheel that was apparently critical for the décor, I’ve made some progress in my concept for the tablescapes. You read that right; I said tablescapes, which is solid proof that I’m really a gay man trapped in a woman’s body. Add to that evidence the George Michael CD’s, and it’s an iron-clad case. Guilty as charged.

Be that as it may, I’m not sure how that squares with an important epiphany I had on Saturday while G was watching some old Dirty Harry movie: Clint Eastwood was HOT in his prime. Seriously hot, people. If Young Clint showed up on my doorstep tomorrow, I can’t promise that I wouldn’t hook up with him while G sat on the bed crying. Hey, it was Billy Joel who said that honesty is such a lonely word!

Otto VonCrapp (my new name for my car) seems to be doing pretty well at the moment thanks to the mad man-skills of G and T, who have replaced my rear brakes. I’m not sure what else they did to Otto, but he’s really running well. Knock wood, throw salt over your shoulder, and clutch the pearls, please.

On the topic of man-skills, the erection of the fence is going very well, thanks to hours in the yard, power tools, lots of colorful language, and enough wood and concrete to encase a pod of killer whales. At least one side, if not two, will be complete in time for the next weekend update. It would have been done today, but we had plans this afternoon.

That’s right…today G & I rolled to the adoption kennel in Acworth to help bathe a new batch of hounds who’ve just retired from racing. It’s a beautiful group of hounds, and we had a ‘crack squad’ of bathers today, rolling through those baths in no time. Seriously, as sweet and patient as these guys and gals were, I doubt they’ll last long at the kennel.

I have one happy tid-bit to wrap up the weekend update. You’ll be pleased to know that Cal, the manorexic child discussed in the post below, actually ate something at my house on Saturday night. One grilled chicken tender wrapped in an X-Treme Fiber tortilla, to be exact. I wish he’d have eaten more chicken, but glad he showed restraint on those tortillas. More than one of those and your colon is guaranteed to spew like Vesuvius. I’ll leave you with that happy thought.

Have a great week!

Situation-Specific Manorexia Nervosa

Jared and Tyler have some really great friends, so we're very lucky in this regard. The way I see it, we're also lucky that hardly a weekend goes by that doesn't include one of more of these great guys sleeping in the basement and making themselves at home. They play video games, watch movies, and eat ridiculous amounts of food.

The one notable exception is Jared's pal Cal. Cal never eats anything.

Not because he doesn't eat in general, because I'm sure he does. He's a tall fellow with enormous feet and a Varsity football letter. I should say he never eats anything at my house, because he normally noshes on rice cakes and turkey breast and drinks soy milk, none of which normally make it to my grocery list. Given enough notice of his arrival, I could stock up on these items, but the visits are usually pretty spontaneous. Since he eats in general but not at my house, I have coined the name of a new disorder...Situation-Specific Manorexia Nervosa. I added the "Nervosa" for myself, because it makes me so damn nervous.

Yes, folks, that's what I do with that expensive partial doctorate in Clinical Psychology...I make up fake disorders to describe teenage behavior. As if all teenage behavior isn't at least a little bit strange.

A Human Confession

There have been a lot of canine apologies, partial acceptances, and confessions swirling around the blog ring this week. I thought I might mix it up a bit with a human confession, so here goes...

I am obsessed with my ClustrMap. Totally.

It's like unwrapping a Christmas present every day when I look to see where my visitors live, and it's a steady source of curiosity. For example, I don't know anyone who lives in the Pacific Northwest, but I have a big dot there. Is it the same person who's visited several times, or several people who've visited once? Come on, Mystery Dot, reveal yourself!

I also really enjoy speculating about the far-flung, international dots. I can't help but wonder what someone in South Korea, Bulgaria, or Rio de Janiero would think about the strange things I post here. Note to Self: Try not to cause an international incident.

How about you...have you checked your ClustrMap today?

Let The Drama Begin

I promised you all some drama and irritation around the occasion of my father-in-law’s surprise 60th birthday party, which is scheduled for Saturday the 15th, and I like to think I’m a woman of my word.

G, the kids and I are on the “Ambiance Committee” of this soiree, which will be taking place in a big meeting room at the in-laws’ church. The theme is old-timey cowboys and cowgirls a la Roy Rogers & Dale Evans, which should be fun.

Of course G takes his responsibility to the ambiance very seriously, as he does with all his endeavors. In keeping with the gravity of his position, Wednesday he went down to the church to meet his Mom to survey the room and plan all the knick-knackery that will fill the space with country and western je ne sais quoi.

During this meeting, she cautioned him that he’s not allowed to affix anything to the walls or otherwise cause any damage. The first time she warned him about it was sufficient. The second time it was patronizing. The third time he had a minor stroke. When she sent him an email containing the same admonition, he responded as shown below:

Mother - You can assure everyone that I have no intention of affixing, attaching, leaning anything against or otherwise touching the walls. I can also put the boys on an armed watch and establish a barbed wire perimeter to insure no party participants touch the walls.

Care to wager about how many more wall-related warnings he’ll receive?

Vote For First Pet

As you may be aware, President-Elect Obama has promised his daughters a dog. Please click the link in the title to vote Greyhound for First Pet. I love the idea of greyhounds getting this kind of recognition. If you've seen the Barney Cam Holiday videos, you can probably imagine how much faster a greyhound could give us a tour! Or we might only see one room if the First Hound felt like staying on the sofa.

Either way, let's all cast our ballots one more time this week. Democracy marches on!

Bite Me

I’m sure we’ve all seen or experienced that old practical joke wherein someone puts a “Kick Me” sign on someone else’s back. It’s a real gem, isn’t it?

I don’t know what it is about Hoover, but it’s almost as if he’s wearing a sign that says, “Bite Me” that only dogs can read. It must be something subtle in his body language that I’m not picking up on, because I’ve seen him nipped at by dogs in a variety of situations.

Even Bruno bit him on Monday during a hot pursuit after a squirrel in the yard. They were outside eating their dinner, so they weren’t muzzled, and my best guess is that Hoover must have bumped into Bruno while they pursued the squirrel, and that’s when it got ugly. I really couldn’t tell what happened as I shot across the yard toward the two of them, but the end result was two small bites: one on Hoover’s face, the other on his behind (the indignity!). To Bruno’s credit, he did stop immediately and cowered when I charged across the lawn yelling, “Bruno! Done!”. He was in trouble, and he knew it, but that was a small consolation to Hoover, I’m afraid.

Poor Hoover is just the sweetest, goofiest dog you could imagine, so it does bother me when he’s on the receiving end of nips and bites. He’s like that kid in elementary school who would eat paste or pick his nose; he’s just seems like such an easy target, I guess.

The Kind Stranger

Many thanks to the One Minute Writer for suggesting the subject of this post. The prompt for today is "Write about something nice a stranger did for you".

Last year G & I celebrated our 17th anniversary in Denver as we were visiting relatives for Christmas, and he gave me a very unusual and lovely silver bracelet. The next day, which was a Saturday, we went to a brewery tour in the distant mountains, and I couldn't resist wearing the bracelet. We had a great time on the tour, but I realized that the bracelet was missing when we returned to Aunt Heather's and Uncle Clay's house. We searched high and low in the car and the house, and we retraced my steps, to no avail. I must have lost the bracelet on the brewery tour, but there was no time to find out; our flight was departing on Sunday.

On Monday I called the brewery and they said that a woman had left her phone number and stated that she'd found a beautiful silver bracelet. I called the number, and spoke to this woman (who had also been on vacation from Chicago) and told her the story of why the bracelet was so meaningful to me. We laughed, I cried, and we exchanged information. I received the bracelet in the mail soon thereafter, carefully wrapped in tissue with a note that said, "Happy Anniversary - Again!".

A Little Suggestion

Please excuse this interruption of our regularly-scheduled frivolity. Once total mind-control has been achieved, you will be returned to your regular lives. Although you will feel compelled to do exactly as I command, you will be totally unaware of the suggestion imparted in this post.

Imagine yourself for a moment in a happy, warm, and comfortable place such as a book store or public library. You notice that you are very relaxed, and a bit sleepy in this environment. All around you, you notice people are reading Fair Tax: The Truth by Neal Boortz, and they are smiling contentedly as they begin to understand the simple principles. As you read this, you will notice that you're becoming more sleepy by the moment. Your eyelids are becoming heavier and heavier, and as you drift off into a twilight state, your singleminded intention is to learn all you can about the Fair Tax. You must educate yourself about the Fair Tax. The Fair Tax is your friend. Take a few moments to revel in your new sense of closeness with the Fair Tax.

Now you will begin returning to the present time and place. As your consciousness reawakens to your physical environment, you may feel compelled to read and explore some new ideas. This is a healthy response and such inpulses should be heeded as soon as possible.

You're welcome.

Weekend Update

Well, the weekend is drawing to a close with a few news items and updates:

The Cell Phone Sabbath was a partial success, with only one instance of voicemail checking. Not bad for a hardcore addict, if you ask me. Maybe next Sunday will be more successful.

In other news, my Mom started her very own blog this weekend. Hillbilly Heaven is now the worldwide web’s home for her musings on scrapbooking, animals, and who knows what else. Welcome to the blogosphere, Mommarino!

Back here at my house, G got the car up and running. He replaced the battery (again!), said the magic chant 52 times while walking backwards in a circle carrying a candle, and he sacrificed a goat. Ok, not all of that is true, but I had you going, didn’t I?

G and the boys worked on the post holes for the new fence today and they dug lots of drainage trenches using a preposterous-looking gas-powered auger. Viva testosterone!

We found out on Saturday that our neighbors on one side are oddly attached to the 4 foot chain-link fence separating our yards, and they object to the erection of the lovely wooden privacy fence my menfolk will be installing soon. This requires a wholesale scrapping of our original plan, and will force us to lose about 2 feet of real estate to allow them to keep that hideous relic. Strange indeed.

In an incredible feat, we remembered to reset all of our clocks, avoiding our usual “spring forward, fall back” confusion. Now if I can figure out how to set the clock on the new microwave, I’ll be kickin’ like kung fu.

Finally, I got to use the word “erection” in a post. All in all, a good weekend.

Cell Phone Sabbath

Maybe I'm the only person who feels this way, but I suspect I'm not. My cell phone drives me crazy.

Not because I don't want to talk to my friends and family, because that's not the case. It's just that the damn thing rings incessantly. Sure, it's convenient to be able to call home from the grocery store and find out whether or not we're out of sour cream, but is it really necessary to be so in touch all the time?

I suspect this is just some kind of masochistic digital-age addiction, and I intend to find out. I've turned my phone off as of sundown yesterday, and I'm leaving it off until 8:00am Monday. For crying out loud, I'm a corporate trainer, not a brain surgeon who needs to be on call. I can be out of touch for36 hours or so.

At least I think I can.

Hot Sweaty Meatball

G wears those contact lenses that are meant to be left in for a month, and they're great. Once he has them in, he can totally forget them, which is both the best and the worst feature.

Since he started wearing these contacts, he has not once remembered to remove them on time. About every two months, he wakes up one morning with debilitating pain and at least one eye that's bulging, throbbing, and feels like a "hot sweaty meatball". When this happens, he has to remove the lenses and "go commando" with no vision correction for a day or so, which in and of itself is a huge safety issue.

He won't get Lasik, he won't wear glasses, and he won't change these contacts on time. I'm not his Mother, and I don't want to be. At the same time, I don't want him to lose an eye over his carelessness. To nag, or not to nag, that is the question.

Keeping It Real

Now that my kids are older, Halloween is a different experience. When the kids were younger, we were all wrapped up in carving pumpkins, creating costumes, and trick-or-treating. Everyone was involved, and it was a big deal. This year, G was out making deliveries until about 9pm, Jared went to the football game, and Tyler took off to trick-or-treat with his friends, which left me and the dogs to greet the ghouls and goblins. It was kind of a drag, but I stationed myself by the door with some vodka, a peanut butter sandwich, my laptop, and my candy bucket.

Suddenly, there's a knock at the door, and it was the Bosslady and her good pal Vanessa. Noticing that I was not only alone, but also watching HGTV and reading blog comments, the Bosslady (who can be relied on for keeping it real) said, "Addie, you're like a drag-queen shut-in with your HGTV and your blog on Halloween!"

I wonder what she would have thought if she'd seen me washing down my peanut butter sandwich with vodka tonics?