Thursday, March 31, 2005
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Fighting Doc-llini
My beloved pup likes to play - after eating, it's what he does best. Unfortunately for the humans living in his apartment, the only game he seems to want to engage in is what we call "The Biting Game." Creative and clever name, I know. This game consists of the dog lurching and leaping like he's recently consumed an entire bottle of methamphetamines, and attacking anything attached to your hands. Clothing, forearms, elbows, fingers-- nothing is sacred to the wild and hairy beast that is Doc.

Recently, my roommate Keri (who always show Doc an inordinate amount of love and affection) was playing TBG with Doc...see below for photographic proof. I'm proud of Keri for risking life and limb to entertain the pooch, but I'm also proud of Doc for recognizing a University of Michigan alum (and sweatshirt, natch) and showing them who's boss. We're still trying to figure out who won.

Here we see Doc defending his loyalties to the University of Illinois.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005
I'm the first resulting item if you google "Parallel First" or "Parallelfirst"! My geeky heart explodeth. I realize that I am the only person on the planet who would ever google the phrase "parallelfirst" but I had to share my google-y joy with the rest of the Internet.

I would post the screen shot of the Google happiness, but I'm not smart enough yet to convert the screen shot into a jpeg, ergo, no photo.

Woo hoo! A celebration is in order! I think I will dance on the top of my desk, while singing along to "Girls Got Rhythm" by AC/DC. You can do that when you go to work dressed like you're on your way to the gym. Yippee!

Love Song for J. Nike Prufrock
Some women are arguably far more sophisticated than I am. You know the type - their jacket always matches their bag, their shoes are inevitably heeled and somewhat dainty looking...I could go on. I am not, have never been, and will never be one of those women. I am one of the women you see walking down the street that looks normal - I am the everyday woman.

I have a love affair with sneakers. Gym shoes, tennies, running shoes, whatever you want to call them. I love them all with an unabashed passion. I have 8 pairs living in my closet. Recently, there was a sad development in the sneaker population of Jamie-land. My FAVORITE pair perished. I simply couldn't wear them anymore. They went the way of all smelly, broken-laced, detached sole sneakers. I had to throw them away (sob).

I am heartbroken. I loved those shoes. Those shoes saw me through one of the most tumultuous periods in my young adult life. They stepped in dog poop, got wet in the rain, were repaired many times by super glue, and always fit perfectly no matter what pair of socks I happened to be wearing at the time. I will miss them.

I'd like to have a quick moment of silence in honor of the best pair of shoes a girl could ever have.

Rest In Peace, dear friends.

She Gon' Done it Agin!
As many of my readers are aware, I'm a spender. Not a saver. Self-control has NEVER been my strong suit -- particularly when it comes to shoes, bags, dieting, and all things related to home decor. I go through peaks and valleys of STUFF...I'll accumulate a mountain of things I don't need, then 6 mo. later, purge almost everything. Some stuff I sell, others I donate, depending on the condition. See, internet, MY HEART IS IN THE RIGHT PLACE. I can't begin to explain the viscious cycles of self-loathing and self-reinforcement that I go through sometimes. I have (quite literally) an angel on one shoulder, and a devil on the other.

This morning I bought a very nice digital camera. It definitely falls in the "want" column, but the opportunity presented itself, and I went for it. I see this as a double-edged sword, because now I will be forced to freeze my credit card. Literally - I'm going to put it in a ziploc bag full of water and stick it in the freezer. That way, I'll think twice before I using it again.

Anyway, I bought a pretty impressive camera (relative to my currently limited ability) for a pretty impressive price (relative to my currently somewhat limited income). I'm VERY excited about it but afraid simultaneously. I want to show it off to people, but there's the guilt factor too...should I have purchased it? Will I end up regretting spending the money? It's something I've been thinking about investing in for about 6-7 months, and just never bit the bullet, so to speak. I know that there are certain people that will be upset with me for spending my money irresponsibly. A part of me was screaming, "DON'T DO IT!" but the other part of me (that likes to spoil itself) said, "Why not?!"

I can hear my mother now, "Jamers, money is meant to be spent." and my father, "Make a list of 3 reasons why you need the camera and then decide." No wonder my buying patterns are so unpredictable and decisions ultimately leave me conflicted. Moral of the story: This blog is going to have a lot more pictures on it in the future. And they won't be ones that I have to hijack from a random website.

Swing Kid
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
I have a co-worker who is very "into" music from the 1940's, 50's, and early jazz (think warbly trumpets, Dinah Washington, and staticky vintage recordings). He also likes to play it loudly from his computer. God help us.


Sometimes, if I'm really lucky, he snaps his fingers and sings along. Part of me wants to applaud him for not being afraid to be an individual, and the other part of me wants to yank his computer off its docking station and shatter it in tiny pieces on the the factory roof below my office window.

Just had to get that out of my system.

Weekend Update with Jamie Jamerkins
Monday, March 28, 2005
Yes, it's true. I am back from New Orleans, and I have beads to show for it. Although they were not obtained in true N.O. fashion, I will probably keep them for awhile as a reminder of good times.

SMD brought his digital camera along (thank you, by the way) so I was able to snap shots as we walked, toured, etc. I'm not accustomed to having a camera on-hand, so it was really nice to be able to capture certain things. There's something about a vacation that you just can't take home in your imagination -- you have to have a literal memory, i.e. a photo. Well I do, at least.

Once he emails me the goods, I'll throw some of the better ones up for all to see. I think I was really on his nerves at times, b/c he accused me of trying to be Dooce. I quickly reminded him that this is what I'm always like, when a digital camera is handy. I'm trying to be as well-roundedly irritating as possible. (cue canned laughter)

Go Big Ten!
This is such a great time to be a Big Ten Conference Alum...we're half of the Final Four, dammit! It's so great! This way, if Illinois doesn't win (knock on wood), I'll have someone worthwhile to cheer for.

Goin' Down to the Delta
Thursday, March 24, 2005
The Mississippi Delta, that is. This weekend, I'm going to meet SMD in New Orleans. Bring on the ragin' cajuns! Seriously, though, I have never been there and am very excited to walk around the French Quarter, see the amazing, historical churches, eat lots of amazing food, and have my very first hurricane at Pat O'Brien's.

Delta Airlines, Nile Delta, Delta Force, Delta Burke. Hey, is she still married to Major Dad? Sorry - random thought. If you type "Delta" enough, it begins to look very strange. Delta Delta Delta, can I helpya helpya helpya?

For those of you concerned about my office chair, it appears to be back in working condition. When I get a digital camera (too bad my birthday is nowhere near March), I'm going to take a before/after of my office chairs, and you too can see the heinous-ness that is my old chair. Ergo, the attraction to a newer, sleeker option.

I hope you all get out there and have fun while I'm kickin' up my heels in N'Awlins!

Sit, Ubu, Sit. Good dog.
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Dude. I just got a new chair in my office (which I completely rearranged on Monday morning) and it COMPLETELY improved my workplace feng shui. Gone are the days of non-working casters, rigid seatback-ache, and that horrendous scraping noise whenever I stand up.

The guy who brought it up to my office doesn't speak English. Mi no habla Espanol. (Is that phrase even right?) I tried to take it from him and lift it over my desk. He reached in to help me, said, "Me." which I translated into "Allow me, young lady. I shall carry this chair over the threshold of your desk, lest you injure yourself or break an unfeminine sweat." So I gave it to him, and he promptly dropped it and CRASH! KABOOM! POW! KABLOOEY! the chair broke into about 15 pieces on my badly berbered office floor.

So sad. His face went redder than my hair and all I could say was "sorry." How do you say "Oh my God, I'm so embarassed. You are going to go back to your post on the factory floor and tell all the workers about that crazy. redheaded lunatic lady in Customer Service" in Spanish?

Tuesday, March 22, 2005
I always wonder what I should write about on this damn blog. I love it, and alternately, I fear it. While I should be using it as an outlet, a forum, and an anonymous friend, it typically becomes a 10-minute brain dump. I truly wish that I could take the time to be articulate, intelligent, and present myself in a somewhat polished manner. Unfortunately, all the readers end up getting is a snapshot of a certain, fleeting moment within my daily routine.

That being said, I hope you enjoy it. It is strange to think that the anonymity of the internet is simultaneously a shelter and a stage. My pollyanna, midwestern nature wants to meet all my readers - hell, let's go out for coffee, or a drink! The more, the merrier! Then the cynical, jaded part of me says, "What are you doing, dumbass?! There are freaks on the internet - people who could stalk you, steal your identity, and/or come after you and take your precious dog!"

A big thank you to the readers who lurk on this site (all 15 of you) and don't threaten my safety on a daily basis. I write this blog for me, but I'm glad that you enjoy it too.

Gooooo, Illini, GO!
Monday, March 21, 2005
I love that cheer.

Here are the random UofI photos for today. In a time-warp fashion, here are the 4 places that I spent most of my time in college. The number 1 time-wasting spot, the Pi Phi house, will have to be the Photo du Jour later...as I am at work, and contrary to popular opinion, I do actually work AT WORK.

Assembly Hall (creative name, huh?) was once the world's largest, unsupported dome structure. It's also the world's ugliest building.

Lincoln Hall, home of the SpeechComm department (and therefore, many NCAA athletes)

The Armory, home of smelly recycled rubber flooring, dance team rehearsals, random psychology classes, and gameday parade line-ups

Upper Exterior Halls of Memorial Stadium

Upon reading a post by Very Mom, I was reminded of one of the things I loved most about living in the mid-South.

SONIC. Cherry-limeades, HUUUGE Diet Cokes with the BEST crushed ice on the planet, heart-stoppingly good (literally) breakfast sandwiches on Texas toast, milkshakes thicker than the coating of prosthetic latex on Michael Jackson's face...OH my Lord, the list could go on and on.

I used to drive past one every day on my way to campus, and of course I stopped to partake. And THAT, my friend, is how you gain 30 pounds in two years.

1 Down...
Friday, March 18, 2005
Yeah, Baby!

Is it just me, or does the FDU player behind James Augustine look like he's doing a bad, white-boy grind at a dance club? SMACK THAT A&$#...work it, own it...

Erin go Bragh
Thursday, March 17, 2005
I'm not Irish, but I love St. Patrick's Day. Here is a list of reasons why!


Memories of St. Patty's Days gone by...
- Putting on shamrock tattoos with rain water from the curb outside C.O.Daniels
- Watching SH make out with this INSANELY hot guy...S, did we ever get his name?
- Waking up in a green derby hat, a Guinness T-shirt, jeans, and shoes.
- Searching for the remains of a cell phone, dropped in drunken hysteria from the 42nd floor. (not my phone, for the record)
- People puking in green, paper, party hats.
- Pretending to be Irish to get free drinks (well maybe I still do this...)

Dying the Chicago river green:


Hail Alma Mater
Wednesday, March 16, 2005
If you have been paying ANY ATTENTION WHATSOEVER to college hoops recently, you have noticed that my dear Illini are currently ranked #1 in the NCAA. For those of you that attended The University of Illinois - Urbana, you also understand what a rare opportunity this is for Illini Alumnae around the globe. So I decided, in an effort to support my alma mater, and get everyone excited for the big tourney coming up, I'll be posting random Illinois photos on my blog.

The first one is especially near and dear to my heart, as it is a snapshot of the Illinette Dance Team uniforms just a couple of years prior to my time on the team (I'm not kidding- had I been born 2.5 years earlier, it could have been me dazzling the crowd in my white boots and french cut leotard). Our team may not have been the most talented at technical dance, but in front of 70,000+ fans cheering fans, we had the time of our lives.

Go Illinois!

How much do I love THIS?
Tuesday, March 15, 2005
I have always been very open about my love affair with Diet Coke. Now I know how much I would have to drink in order to physically perish.

Click Here to find out how much caffeine (given your weight) it would take to kill you.

I love the internet almost as much as I love DC...and sneakers...and food.

Home is where the heart is
Or perhaps home is where the million-jillion voice mails are. I'm back from Colorado, wishing that I had never left.

I picked the dog up at the kennel early this morning. There's nothing more gratifying than to show up, and have your dog recognize you through an observation window that you're standing more than 15 feet from. He freaked out, tried with much effort to squeeze his long body through the chain-link fence of the daycare play area, and I immediately ran like an idiot to pick him up. How quickly the mighty have fallen...

Turns out his socialization abilities are improving because his report card from the kennel (something all boarders get at the end of their stay) mentioned that he made friends with a red coonhound named Remy, and was "not afraid to run with the big dogs." Which explains why, when I first showed up this morning, he was running around at full speed, barking his head off at a very hairy retriever. Apparently he's not scared of dogs that are 5X his size.

Which means he's either very, very brave, or very, very dumb. I love him a lot, but I have a sinking feeling it's the latter of the two.

Schoosh, Swoosch
Sunday, March 13, 2005
Hello from sunny Steamboat Springs, Colorado! I am here for a long weekend, getting myself back on skis (and on a snowboard, for the first time) after multiple years. Can I please tell you how foolish I am, to think that my skiing experience on puny, artificially-created, Midwestern foothills would translate into ability on the side of an enormous mountain?! I AM A FOOL, DEAR READERS.

I had an okay day of snowboarding (yes, my ass hurts, for all of you who warned me that I would fall a million times). For the record, I only fell 8-10 times, and even took a lesson (where I only fell twice). Skiing was another story, the details of which I will not disclose. Let's just say that 1.5 days later, I'm cursing myself for being physically and mentally unprepared to tackle this mountain. Not to mention the lactic acid that is burning in my thighs equivalent to the heat produced in the fiery depths of Hell.

So what to do? Duh - take a long nap, hang out in the hot tubs, grab some Starbucks, and settle in to update my blog while watching ESPN's coverage of the big basketball weekend. GO ILLINI! In other news, this month's Scientific American magazine is excellent - every article was great! I pored over mine while waiting to depart O'Hare...definitely pick up a copy.

Off to go watch people fall all over the hillside. I love vacation.

Oh Boy
Wednesday, March 09, 2005
Somebody really stepped in it this time.

To one Mr. Matthew Jackson,

May you spend the rest of your life thinking about the insulting hate that you spewed [in trackable email format] to one Heather Armstrong. I sincerely hope that your inbox is filled with emails defending her, as she represents several of this nation's most influential demographics- parents, artists, public figures, professionals, SAHMs to name a few...groups that you would do best NOT to offend, as they are people just like you, EXCEPT THEY DON'T GO AROUND SENDING PEOPLE NASTY, HATEFUL EMAILS.

What goes around comes around, as I'm sure you'll notice everytime you look at your email inbox for the next couple of months. Payback's a motherfucker.

Good luck with the rest of your close-minded, generic, non-noteworthy life.


Jamie, Chicago, IL

Pigs are flying in a cold, cold Hell
Tuesday, March 08, 2005
I have been at work since 8am. That's right, 8:00 AM, as in THE MORNING. For those of you that know me well, you can appreciate how rare an occasion this is. Once I became employed by a company that allows flex-time, I immediately shifted my hours from 10 am to 6pm because I am a night owl, and have always had trouble waking up.

Unfortunately, that schedule doesn't really work that well with my current job duties. So here I am, punching out my dutiful, daily entry and preparing my fertile mind for a day of meetings, data processing, phone calls, and little white customer service lies.

On any other [normal] weekday, I would still be sound asleep. SLEEPING, PEOPLE! Does anyone realize the gravity of this situation?!

Yo Yo Yo
Monday, March 07, 2005
Well I'm back in....brown. I wanted to say I'm back in black, but that would be a lie. My shirt is brown. Therefore, I'm back in brown. I love the color brown - almost so much that I wish poop could be a different color (like purple, or whatever) because it gives the color brown such a BAD RAP.

This weekend was interesting, and as always, tiring. My bout with strep throat is almost over, as I am down to 4 penicillin tablets. ONE MORE DAY until I can get back to normal, everyday behavior. You know -- drinking copious amounts of alcohol, smoking 3 packs a day, and singing my lungs out at punk rock concerts.

I'm going back to Indy-ANNNAAAAA
Friday, March 04, 2005
Indiana, here I come....I love that song. I love the Jackson 5, for that matter. Michael was just so loveable and non-molesty (new word for the day) when he was a young thing, earning his keep in Gary. Gotta love Gary.

Look at those fros go!

I won't be in Gary this weekend, actually, I'll be in the great, thriving metropolis that is Indianapolis. More judging. Woo Woo!

What's up, disjointed? I have no idea what I'm typing. I don't have time to type anything sensical, in fact, I need to stop typing right now and get back to work.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Ill Communication
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
Sorry for the inadvertant hiatus from my daily blog randomness - I fell sick on Monday with what I now know is strep throat. On Monday, it felt like a swift death, yesterday was equally miserable, and now today I think I may be turning a corner. Thank God for Penicillin. Well, technically speaking, I should be thanking Alexander Fleming, Ernst Chain, and Howard Florey.

Anyhow, sorry for the abrupt vacation. I was too busy being miserable to write anything at all, let alone anything clever. Hope you are all doing well, and are happy and healthy! Someone has to be.