Friday, September 30, 2005
So let's talk about Halloween. It's coming up. This afternoon, I decided that I would be going as Tammy Faye Baker. Not the recent, remarried Tammy Faye who has lightened up on the mascara and filled many prescriptions for mood-altering medication, but that crazy girl we all know and love from the 80's. The heyday, as Jim used to call it.

Praise Jesus.

I have ordered a blonde wig pre-styled in a formal female mullet, which I will be trimming just a bit. I'm in the middle of an EBay bidding war for a teal, silk pantsuit with shoulder pads, tapered legs, the works. Now all I need are about 17 pairs of false eyelashes, and a skanky pair of pumps.

The question remains: Do I get a costume for the dog, or is that just overkill? He would make a very cute Batman.

Somebody please explain this to me

Men's basketball shorts mystify me. Why are they so long? Why do hoodrats on the west side of Chicago wear them UNDERNEATH their butt cheeks? At that length, aren't they basically manpris?

Even in college, when I was able to observe these poly-lycra wonders from the other side of the court, I was confused. Why so boxy? Why so ugly? WHY SO SHINY?!

Additionally, I find that many men combine said apparel with looooong knee socks, pulled all the way up. Sometimes, the shorts overlap the socks.


Thursday, September 29, 2005
It's that time of year again. Last year, my first post of autumn was about my undying love for Honeycrisp apples (which, by the way, I saw at the Jewel-Osco last night -- that's a rare occurrence, people...snatch them up while you can).

I don't know why, but fall was a surprise to me this year. Perhaps I've been distracted with the typical business of summer's end -- storing my window unit, phasing out my tank tops, and saying goodbye to any hopes of a wild card berth for my beloved Chicago Cubs.

Suddenly this morning, it was like everything was crisp, bright, and cool - three of my favorite adjectives. My steering wheel was chilly when I got into my car this morning, I put on my ENORMOUS Iowa hoodie with an old pair of jeans, I had to shut the last of my open windows, and the mid-weight blanket on my bed was feeling a bit thin. I lit up a pumpkin pie candle at my desk, my hair is dry already, and I feel an unusual urge to head to the grocery store for cinnamon sticks.

Oh, and the leaves on a tree at the corner of Roscoe and Damen are starting to turn.

Yay! Fall is here!

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

T.M.I. Tuesday
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
As much as I love and appreciate Heather and Danny, I promised myself that this would never become a blog about pooping, peeing, puking, and any other bodily functions that involved fluids. As far as I'm concerned, sharing that in-depth with the internet is like inviting a stranger into your bathroom during a bout with a 24 food poisoning bug. Say it with me-- ICK.

I must, however, share with you the story of my recent, very bizarre health scare. This morning, around 3:45 am, I woke up in the worst pain I have ever felt in my life. No exaggeration - this was pretty damn bad, and I have a high pain threshold.

Imagine waking up in the midst of the world's most intense menstrual cramp, ladies. Now add the muscle spasms of a charley-horse to that (only in your shoulders and ribs), and throw in some general nausea as an extra. Welcome to my morning.

I crawled (yes, on all fours) to the bathroom, thinking I could solve this little puzzle myself. When that didn't help, I tried making myself throw up. That didn't work. So I crawled back to my bedroom and laid down on the floor, and took the next logical step -- calling my mother. (she's an RN, people, I'm no sissy - I wanted the info)

With several possibilities on the table, I listened for the next half hour as she rattled off self-diagnosis tactics for me to try. News flash: it's not that easy to figure out your health status when you can't straighten out your body, climb into your own bed, or take a deep breath.

That left me with two options - appendicitis, or insanely bad gas. Yes, I said GAS. Who, me?! Surely not - I'm the girl who can't stand fart-talk in any situation. HW, I almost called you to ask you what your appendicitis felt like, I'm SO not kidding. The pain never localized into the lower right quadrant of my abdomen, however, so I'm only left with one explanation...

Turns out it was just the worst case of gas known to man. I felt like I was in the early, shockingly painful stages of childbirth. I almost passed out at one point. From gas.

So, so embarassing.

And the Winner Is...
Congratulations to the winner of the story challenge, JEN! Her ghetto rhyme took the proverbial cake, and quite literally, almost made me pee my pants.

The winning entry:
R. Kelly is smokin the dope
Looks at the end of his rope

Thank God he’s got tons a socks
He’s got ‘em to trade for rocks

He needs hisself afterparty Frosties
To give to his prosties

Hair’s all a ‘fro
Cause, yo, the girls ain’t comin round no mo

Anything that references R. Kelly and the words "hisself" and "mo" is a winner in my book.

Jen's SUPER DOOPER PRIZE PACKAGE includes my undying love and friendship and a box of Frango Mints from soon-to-be-another-name Marshall Field's on State Street here in Chicago. Also, a donation to Blue Horse Charities will be made in her name.

Honorable mentions go to Alfred's Mom for the unique creation of a frosty pedicure, and to KateT who managed to work in a classic lyric by Nelly.

Thank you to ALL who participated.

Make love to the camera, rawr- you're a tiger, baby!
Monday, September 26, 2005
Trying to get the money shot for this year's holiday cards...

...what a nightmare. I bet Dr. Doolittle never had this problem.

Do you think it would be offensive to put "Don we now our gay apparel" on the front of the card? It's really not a reference to anything other than the ONLY carol that references clothing. Get it? The dog...in clothing? It has nothing to do with the sexual term "gay." I'm having an internal debate about this - I would hate for anyone to take it the wrong way. Please advise.

See below for contest rules and regulations. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Residents of KY, AL, and WY are ineligible. You have approximately 6.5 hours to complete this contest, people.

One of my writer friends has already submitted her entry - where, may I ask, are the rest of you? I expect a response with all people who claim to love me, as well as the people who really don't know me at all.

I will announce the SUPER DOOPER SPECIAL PRIZE by tomorrow morning, along with the winner.

Choose Your Own Adventure
Friday, September 23, 2005
So there I was, sitting in my car at the Wendy's Drive-Thru pickup window. Waiting on the Wendy's staff to replace what was SUPPOSED to be Diet Coke, I noticed a strange man headed towards my car. I think to myself, "Hmmm. Corner of North Ave and Cicero." and promptly lock my doors and roll up my windows. Better safe than sorry.

Aforementioned gentleman comes closer, then closer until I realize he's headed towards the side door entry of the restaurant. He is smoking something odd -- something I've never seen before. Hair half in corn-rows, half in afro, he's dressed in a tuxedo shirt and jacket, sweatpants, and is carrying an armful of newly purchased athletic socks (my estimate would be about 25 pair).

Yet another reason to stop eating fast food.

Contest for my readers: Put together a short response (in the comments) about who this man is, and why he's hungry. 50 words or less. Have it to me by 5pm CST on Monday. The winner will receive a special gift...I'm serious about this. If you want the gift, you'd better start thinkin'.

Have a great weekend!

Self Portrait Friday
I'm attempting to be clever with this, but of course the scanner had to go and ruin everything. Click on the picture below for today's post. Here's your legend for reading the missing ends of some of the sentences (in order):


Currently Loving...
Thursday, September 22, 2005
1. the "do not disturb" setting on my phone at work
2. guacamole doritos
3. honeycrisp apples
4. taking pics of my dog for my holiday cards (yes, I'm that kind of pet owner)
5. the weather here
6. disco music, esp. Donna Summers
7. being barefoot in my office
8. working with all men who won't notice that I'm not wearing any shoes right now
9. my internet/blog friends who are all so clever and funny
10. Infusium 23 leave-in conditioner (it's cheap and it works- SCORE!)

What are YOU loving today?

Hot stuff, baby this evening...
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
I want some HOT STUFF baby tonight...

After I leave work tonight, I'm going to Lincoln Square to pick up a new bed! Whee! I love new things. It doesn't matter whether it's a new pack of gum, a new pair of socks, or a new car (which I've actually never had), it somehow seems exciting. I like the smell of new things, and the sounds - like when you open a new book and the binding crackles. Mmm. LOVE IT.

I bought a bed frame from a nice couple on CraigsList, and got it for $75! I'm such a fabulous negotiator. (snort) Right now, my mattress and box spring are on a metal bed frame that has non-locking casters. Translation for those NOT in the furniture industry: everytime I sit up in bed to read, the bed rolls away from the wall. Not good. The new bed is a solid pine frame, formerly from IKEA, home of death, doom, and shitty furniture. However, solid wood is hard to come by at that pricepoint, and is worth keeping. Therefore, I consider it an intelligent purchase on my part.

After attempting to fit the entire bed (disassembled) into my pimpin' Mitsubishi Galant, I will bring it to work tomorrow to be finished. Yay for working in a factory! This will not only keep me from smelling up my apartment (and my neighbor's apartments) with the stink of finish and lacquer, but also requires no cost and/or effort on my part. Double yay!

Another point of interest: according to my calculations, the bed will be a bit higher than normal if I use both my mattress and box spring. This means that the dog will no longer be able to jump up onto the bed (and my bladder) in the middle of the night. BONUS.

Before and after photos to come...

The Morning Commute
Seen on my way to work this morning...

1. Man with walker attempting to JAYWALK IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET across North Avenue, using one hand to hold on to his INFANT DAUGHTER that he was carrying ON HIS SHOULDERS. I just about had a heart attack.

2. Homeless man lying on bus stop bench, actively vomiting on the curb.

3. Very short, old person driving a rusty Buick Skylark LESS THAN 10 mph. No lie.

4. A drag queen on the corner of Kedzie and Fullerton, wearing a t-shirt that said "Ready or not, Here I Cum" with an arrow pointing towards his crotch. Clever.

5. Large yellow truck straddling the dotted line of 2 lanes of traffic on Sacramento, much to the chagrin of the eleventy thousand honking cars behind him.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005
Last night I had a physical assessment at my new gym - basically a consultation with a trainer that involves a lot of embarassing physical testing.

Sufficed to say, I'm in OK physical shape. Above average on core strength, waaaaay below average on arm strength (no surprise there). I had to speed walk 1 mile, which was mostly just boring, and apparently I'm exactly where I should be relative to my body fat.

So why is it that I feel so out of shape?

Perhaps it's the 9 (nine, yes, NINE) places she clipped and clamped my fat with the really uncomfortable steel calipers. WAS THAT REALLY TRULY NECESSARY?! I don't even let my boyfriend of 2+ years touch my hip fat. Who does this trainer think she is?!

I haven't been that uncomfortable since weigh-ins for, oh gee, just about every dance team I've ever been a part of. Ick.

It's raining onesies
Monday, September 19, 2005
Yesterday, my mother and I threw a casual lunch/baby shower for my sister. Nothing major -- it is her second child (but first boy) and we didn't want to bend etiquette TOO far, so we made it a small affair.

Several people came out to celebrate little G-Unit, who is scheduled to make his appearance on October 18th (less than a month!). Brianna, his big-sister-to-be, decided that she and her cousin Hannah would monkey around for awhile after lunch...but only until Bri hugged Hannah a little too aggressively and knocked her teeny ass straight to the carpet.

Bri is getting stronger and stronger each time I see her - check out this picture. Does she not look like a male gymnast? When I asked her to pose, she insisted on hanging between the table and chair. THIS JUST IN: The Ukrainian judges gives her form a 9.5, deducting points for the sloppily installed hairbow. (my fault - I put it there) I have to admit- she's SO CUTE but sort of looks like a little boy in drag in this photo. Maybe it's the bulging toddler shoulder muscle.

Of course the baby was showered with ridiculous amounts of blue clothing - jumpers, sweaters, footy pajamas (my personal favorite), and NCAA sports outfits from my Uncle Jim. No surprise there.

I even let Bri take a picture with my camera. It's really sad when a 28 month old can whup my ass in photography. I need to take more classes, apparently. Maybe when she learns her alphabet, she can instruct me on the finer points of composition.

Had a great time - congratulations, Jo!

The retrospective "Jamie's Hair: Through the Years" has officially been postponed until I can get to my parent's house to find some incriminating and entertaining photos.

I'm stuck on the idea of friends lately. This weekend, I had a minor epiphany.

Have you ever noticed that there are some girls that only have male friends? They might be athletic, they might be girlie, but no matter what, they only seem to be comfortable in a room full of men. They claim that they're not interested in the drama of having close friends who are female. They're accustomed to the novelty of being the token woman in a gaggle of men. I personally believe they're frightened of a little competition. I call these women inadvertant attention whores, but that's just me.

Just kidding. Sort of.

There is a value to having a core (or extended) group of female friends -- one that cannot be found in any other setting. The unusual ties that bind women together are undeniable, and can be a double-edged sword...for instance, only women know why other women are catty. It's just in our DNA. Ran into your boyfriend with another girl? Female friends understand that you need 3 things: Ben & Jerry's, champagne, and all sorts of reasons why that other girl is a fat, unattractive, dumbass ho-bag. Out for a night on the town? Female friends won't leave you for a cute piece of leather-jacketed ass.

In non-sarcastic terms, I think that the ability for a woman to have healthy relationships with other women is indicative of many things: coping mechanisms, social finesse and ability, diplomacy, I could go on. Have female friends is challenging and infinitely rewarding. There are reasons (beyond vanity and self-preservation) why women will FIGHT for friendships with other women. We know that lasting friendships are hard-won and deserve 110% effort.

As a party on Saturday night, I got a chance to observe interactions between men who seemingly have the same type of relationships with one another that I do with my closest girlfriends. I am beginning to think the qualities that women find so appealing in other women may ALSO apply to guys.

Do men value their male friendships as much as we women do? I would like to think so.

In my fight to remain open-minded about gender and friendship, have I unwittingly disqualified men from the competition? I know I have male readers, so guys, chime in with your thoughts...

Self Portrait Friday : Friends
Friday, September 16, 2005

I don't know what I'd do without you guys! They say that you can learn much about someone by seeing what kind of people they surround themselves with.

Thank you for being there for me.

As time goes by, that's all that really matters.

Have a great weekend, all.

Love you!

Lately I've been noticing children everywhere. Perhaps it's because the end of the summer is approaching and they want to put in as much outdoors time as possible, perhaps it's because I live and work in residential areas, I don't know. Yesterday I was driving home from work and noticed what looked like an informal dance party in the central park of Logan Square. Sitting at the stoplight, I assumed that someone had brought out a boombox and they were all just having some lighthearted fun - the weather was gorgeous, so who can blame them?

Then they all started doing the same thing, and I realized I was witnessing a cheerleading/dance team practice. A warm feeling flooded my chest and I had to fight off pangs of mild jealousy - I can vividly remember the days when it was me out there, in the middle of the grass, not giving a damn who saw me.

Suddenly they all stopped, and stood still. Years of experience told me that a stunt of some sort was imminent...and sure enough, out came the craziest, most disorganized bunch of group toe touches that I have ever seen. And I've seen a lot. (For you non-dancers, a toe touch is a skill typically confined to cheerleading but more recently incorporated in dance that involves jumping straight up off the ground, putting your legs out to the sides in a spread eagle position, and reaching for them with equally outstretched arms to the right and left) They had zero technique, none of them were using their core muscles to control their movements, and OH! the hyperextension of the arms in the preparation. I had to fight the urge to get out of my car and go correct them.

I flashed back to years of practicing in my backyard with my good friend Emily, when all that mattered was making the varsity dance team. I remembered how being one of two sophomores on the varsity team (Emily was the other) was so incredibly gratifying, considering I'd been cut from the junior high cheerleading auditions. It was (and is) the only time I've ever been cut for anything, and I was determined not to let it happen twice. We even videotaped ourselves, in that summer of 1994...practicing body placement on our full-size trampoline, critiquing each other, and spending HOURS poring over the videos of hundreds of grand jetes done across my bumpy backyard.

In short, we were awful. Someday I will find those tapes and want to throw up - we were that bad. And yet somehow, over the years, I got better and took that road as far as it would go (for me, at least). I still communicate with the people who put their faith and effort into me, and into the development of my abilities. I can never repay them for the risks they took in gambling on my potential. They are the people who taught me humility, teamwork, self-discipline, and how rewarding it can be to help others.

Dance teams and cheerleading teams are filled with athletes of all kinds - they teach you how to make quick, intelligent decisions, take care of your body, treat others with respect, and diplomacy. One learns that a 2 minute halftime is NEVER ENOUGH to showcase all of the hard work that goes on behind the scenes, so you've got to make the best of what you have, when you have it. Any dancer can tell you that a studio/gym is far more challenging and competitive than a Pop Warner or Park District football program.

I drove away silently wishing that the girls I saw in the park have someone in their lives who can show them their potential - and I hope that they will be as fortunate as I have been.

Getting my mind out of the gutter
Thursday, September 15, 2005
I'm sorry...I know this is wrong, but I can't stop giggling about the innuendo in the title and first two paragraphs.

With the way UIUC is playing ball this year, I'm just grateful to have something to laugh about.

Life is so ironic
I think I underestimated Britney Spears' business prowess. Does anyone find it strange that her c-section was timed to be on the same day as the launch of her new perfume? Coincidence? I think not.

Do you think she realizes what she's done in naming her son Preston? His nickname will be "Pres." As in press. Paparazzi. What a swan song from a pop princess - unwittingly paying homage to the camera-head freaks that make her celebrity existence so miserable.

Seriously - no one in her family realized this?!

Love and Hair
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
I'm getting my hair highlighted! (I can see you, there, rolling your eyes in disgust at my thoughts that this is actually newsworthy) I'm excited about it, so stop reading RIGHT NOW if you think I'm vapid, vain, and/or shallow. I have a horrendous time trying to make decisions like this, so I consider this a personal development. My appointment is this Saturday, so get ready for a hair retrospective on Monday. I'm currently hunting down embarassing, childhood photos to scan in purely for your entertainment. Like the perm I had in 4th grade. Yeah. That was necessary.

In unrelated news, I have a huge crush on Steve Van Zandt. Did I ever tell you that, internet? I cannot wait for the Sopranos to start, and even though I have never seen him perform, I'm sure he's super sexy doing his almost-geriatric moves on stage with Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band. Talk about multi-talented. Someone in a complex on my block has a poster of him on their living room wall (he's dancing in the photo and it's hilarious). Occasionally, the dog and I will walk around the block deliberately, so that I can spy on the poster. It cracks me up.

I first fell in love with Steven when I saw him as "Silvio Dante" on the Sopranos. There's something about that pompadour hairdo and snarly upper lip that makes me go weak in the knees. He makes me laugh with his ever-so-slight lisp, and the way he tucks his napkin into his collar during every dinner scene. He's an approachable, warm, and fuzzy gangster if there ever was one.

I'm not sure whether I like Steven or Silvio more. It's doesn't really matter. Steven/Sil- if you're reading this, call me. Let's do lunch. I love you.

I also promise to never blog about my hair again, if you pledge to stop wearing that gypsy-style do-rag. Think about it.

People like this make me sick

God bless the DCFS case workers, investigators, and those unfortunate children.

I came, I saw, IKEA
Monday, September 12, 2005
I'm having a crisis of conscience about IKEA furniture. I work at a furniture company that makes solid, beautifully designed stuff, but I still can't get over some of the deals at IKEA. From an industry perspective, the stuff they sell is total crap. Substandard production, questionable structural quality, and some panel's veneer will inevitably start peeling as soon as you get it (and its swedish instructions) assembled. Simply put, there are more than 100 good reasons NOT to shop at IKEA.

That being said, I still love it. I can't get enough of the insanely cheap knick-knacks like dog butt wall hooks, flower pot shaped coffee mugs, and naked furniture that one can stain/finish at will. There's something about IKEA that makes me forget about how chaotic and crowded their stores are...how you have to dodge stupid people and their nineteen children who have stopped in the middle of a busy hallway to discuss what color they should get of the $1.99 wastepaper basket.

(wipes brow, considers editing run-on sentence)

This crisis is mostly unnecessary, and centered totally on my selfish need to "cozy up" my new apartment. There's a devil on my shoulder insisting that I go out this weekend and purchase 3 rooms of curtains, some glasses, and a storage cube that will become my end-of-the-bed-bench-slash-dirty-clothes-hamper. Cash is tight, so I'm forced to shop at IKEA instead of purchasing something my company makes - even with my SUBSTANTIAL employee discount, the stuff is just too expensive and fancy.

Am I crazy?!

Weekend Update with Jamie Jamerkins
Hoo boy, do my friends and I know how to party. This weekend involved all the elements of an excellent girls getaway...mudslides, talking, extremely easy crafts, shopping, talking, ice cream, and did I mention talking? I feel as if, this year, we had more conversations than ever before. (which is a good thing) Maybe I'm just learning to listen and concentrate more now.

List of conversation topics covered this weekend:
- childhood terms for #1 and #2
- tampon design/engineering/technology/scent
- the ones that got away
- girls in our sorority that one of us could remember, but the rest of us had forgotten about until this particular girl was mentioned
- the awkwardness of one's freshman year of college
- weddings
- babies
- potty-training
- Hurricane Katrina (obviously)
- gaucho pants
- our upcoming vacation for 2006
- dogs
- cats (and cat vomit)

And the list goes on. We're a pretty multiloquent bunch.

Until someone emails me photos, there won't be any updates other than text...you'll just have to wait to see all the photos of the honey-and-feathered pillow fight that we had in our lingerie.

Oh wait, we're ACTUAL WOMEN and not on the cover of FHM.

Congratulations to Emily, who recently got engaged (oh baby, you should see that rock), and to Heather, for whom engagement is imminent. Congratulations to Megan, who recently was awarded her Masters Degree in Journalism and is about to start her PhD studies. Erin and Kim are going through fresh starts in their respective occupations, which is exciting, and Laura's dog recently learned how to sing on command!

Shameless plug: Laura's husband is a friend of mine from college, and is in a band. Please visit their website for more details. They call themselves Minus Six, and are in heavy rotation in the nightclub that is my car stereo. You can also download them from iTunes and CDBaby. If you like the Ben Folds Five or OAR, be sure to invest in this talented group.

I always feel like the weekend goes by so quickly! Love you guys, thanks for a fabulous weekend! :)

She's a little runaway...
Friday, September 09, 2005
It's time for me to blow this popstand.

Off to Galena, IL, for a weekend getaway with my hoes. Actually, they're a group of intelligent, assertive, and self-sufficient young women who were my bitches back in the day. (aka they're my sorority sisters) How quickly the time flies when you're transitioning from binge drinking to becoming patent lawyers, engineers, teachers, PhD candidates, computer whizzes, advertising moguls, and customer service managers.

Oh wait, one of these things is not like the other...

In reality, we are going to make our annual escape from real life to hang out in the middle of nowhere, drink copious amounts of sugary mixed drinks and catch up on the details of our lives. In the process, we'll also be making fleece blankets for a nationwide children's charity that distributes them to seriously ill kiddies. (I bought some sweet fleece, yo, tropical prints, faux denim, and embroidered strawberries)

In the hubbub of my departure at way-too-early-o-clock this morning, I forgot my camera. That's right, internet: I F*$&ING FORGOT MY CAMERA! I will be forced to document the occasion on monday with borrowed pics. I'm sure you'll get over it, but I might not.

Until then, be safe and have wonderful weekends!

It's a Small World After All...It's a Small Small World
Thursday, September 08, 2005
GOD, I hate that song. Sorry.

I just had the funniest and most surreal moment EVER in the history of my short-lived bloglife. One of the blogs on my daily "to-read" list is Miss Domestic, otherwise known as Paige. (see my sidebar for a link)

I have left a couple of comments on her site, mostly in response to her photos of Germany (hello, jealousy!) and her son, who is on my top 5 list of "World's Most Adorable Humans Under the Age of 8." She is extremely funny and has that biting, dry sense of humor that I wish I was ballsy enough to pull off. Recently, I got up the courage to IM her about something, and today...SHE RESPONDED! LIVE! ON THE INTERNET!

Why this is such an event to me is beyond even my own comprehension. I understand the technology behind Instant Messenger. I suppose that her response made her seem more human and real to me than before. Much like the first couple of times someone outside my immediate circle of friends commented here (Jonna and Tequila). Speaking with her was simultaneously thrilling and weird - it really hit home that she's a real person. How strange is that? OBVIOUSLY she's a real person, duh. I suppose it's just one of the many ways that the internet (God Bless It) makes our huge world more accessible and less intimidating.

Also, I think most people blog for themselves, their friends, and their family. No one really expects or plans for people halfway across the world to find their site and hone in on it. Letting strangers into your life can have various consequences, I suppose, this being one of them. I guess I'm just a bit starstruck, and neither one of us is a celebrity!

I am so NOT articulate right now.

Anyhow, I needed to be in a meeting, like...um, 5 minutes ago. Stop reading this and go give some love to Miss Domestic.

Ridiculous has a new meaning
Okay. I love dogs, but c'mon. This is the dumbest thing I have seen in a long, long time.

I never promised you a rose garden...
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
Can't really post much of anything today, as work is kicking my ass backwards and forwards.

Courtesy of Tertia's link at So Close, I looked up the meaning of my name today. It's different from other meanings I have researched, and deadly accurate. I mostly prefer this definition above others becuase it gives me justification for being a drama queen.

Supplanter : Hebrew

Balanced and fairminded you possess the ability to use sound reason and judgement when determined and decisive action is required. Persuasive and logical you tend to be an influential figure in your circle of friends and associates. You are extremely adaptable and this is necessary as you seem to be continually being presented with decisions of a life altering nature.

Click Here to find yours!

Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
Here is a photo of Doc from this morning, clearly not looking to go take a walk ANYWHERE. Poor thing.

Tell me how I'm supposed to leave this adorable creature by himself ALL day following his sexual assault. Somehow I managed to do it, but it wasn't easy. I was so stressed leaving him, that I completely forgot to grab my laptop bag. Which, of course, I didn't realize until I got all the way to work and walked into an office with a conspicuously empty desk.

Click here for some rockin' fun. You can figure out what song was #1 on the charts, on the day you were born!

My birthday? #1 was "Good Times" by Chic (USA), and "I Don't Like Mondays" by the Boomtown Rats (UK).

Aaah, the last days of disco.

What is yours?

Fit...to be tied
I joined a gym last week. I haven't gone yet. Do you think that's a bad sign?

Monday, September 05, 2005
This evening, I returned from a relaxing, enjoyable Labor Day BBQ (thanks, Katie!) to my little, adorable puppy. Shouldering the guilt of leaving him alone for 75% of his waking hours today, I immediately threw his leash on and we headed out to stretch our legs.

I can't comment on the urban "greenery" value of other major, metropolitan cities, but I find that Chicago isn't half bad for pet owners. The majority of sidewalks have grass that is open to canine...er...activity. In my neighborhood, Doc prefers the intersection of Brompton and Pine Grove. Most appealing to him, I am sure, is the distance from my apartment -- just long enough to constitute a long walk. There are several plots of healthy grass strung end-to-end that just BEG to be pooped on. On our way to the Pine Grove "Poopin' Patch," Doc decided he wanted to run. Like myself, his body is built for comfort. Not speed. Still feeling responsible for leaving him alone all day, I decided (flip flops bedamned) to run along with him. He was clearly ecstatic.

And then, the unthinkable happened. Halfway around the block, we ran into this crazy wheelchair-bound lady with a ball of fur that, upon further inspection, turned out to be a dog. A stupid, shitty, useless fluffball of a dog named Mikey. I asked what his name was because that's what dog owners do to diffuse the tension of what really goes on when two dogs come upon one another for the first time -- sniff each other's buttholes.

So there I was, chatting with the crazy lady about her stupid dog (because I'm polite like that) and all of a sudden, Mikey was ass-raping Doc. Yes, I used the phrase ASS RAPING. Welcome to all pervy Googlers! I have never seen a dog hump so vigorously. Clearly this evening walk was simply a conjugal pardon from Governor Crazy Lady.

As I stepped in to separate this DOG MAN-WHORE from my precious Doc, I had to center myself over the unsolicited sexual frenzy. Mikey seemed a little off-kilter, so I took that as a hint that perhaps his energy was waning.

I was wrong.

As I pulled my poor, traumatized dog away, Mikey...(cough)...released ALL. OVER. MY. FOOT.

Wait...it gets worse. I still had to walk half a block to get home. With dog semen running down my leg. Try explaining that to ANYONE WITH EYEBALLS that walked past us, wondering why my left shin and instep were glistening in the moonlight.

Fortunately, all's well that ends well. My leg is now clean, and the dog is not traumatized or physically injured. Needless to say, we won't be taking that route anymore.

Self Portrait Friday : Bibliophile
Friday, September 02, 2005
I am a bit of an eccentric when it comes to books and music. I'm not into a certain genre of either -- I tend to choose what immediately appeals to me, whether the appealing image is from a beautiful cover, or a store display. I have been known to browse self-help then move directly to classic literature. In that same vein, I often leave a CD store (yes, I still buy CDs, people...even though I have an iPod) with two wildly different selections. Like Hall & Oates Greatest Hits and the Soundtrack to the Matrix.

This morning I woke up and decided to take some informal shots of my bookshelves. (click to enlarge)

My bookshelves have been with me since high school. They're always one of the first things I unpack whenever I move...I feel more at home when they're set up.

They are also, refreshingly enough, one of things in my life that I'm NOT 100% anal about - I just toss the books around, no order, no system. These photos represent about 25% of the total book count.

I am halfway through the following books, and plan on finishing them this weekend:

NASCAR for Dummies
Suze Orman's "Money Advice for the Young, Fabulous, and Broke"
The Badass Girl's Guide to Poker

Have a wonderful labor day weekend, everyone!

Today's Earworms...
Thursday, September 01, 2005
my. god. must. get. out. of. my. head.

"kodachrome/maybelline/whateverthehellitsnameis" by Simon & Garfunkel
"tell it to my heart" by taylor dayne
"ill communication" by the beastie boys

Is it any wonder that I have a raging headache right now?! Oy.

Still sad about the Gulf Coast
Saw an interesting photo on another site, and it really shook me to the core. Sean and I were in New Orleans this past Easter weekend, and had such an amazing time. I had never been before -- we attended Easter Mass in the country's oldest cathedral (even though neither of us are Catholic), took a riverboat ride, ate at Brennan's, went to the street market, rode the streetcar to the cemetaries, everything! It was such fun. And now it's all pretty much demolished.

This photo is of the main drag...the streetcars run between those streetlamps, from Harrah's Casino all the way to the cemetaries. This photo is actually very near to Morton's, where we had a gorgeous dinner. Truth be told, we didn't really have dinner until I got back from the bar, where I was pacing in front of a television, watching the last few minutes (and overtimes) of UIUC in the final four.

Here are a few other shots from our trip, as a reminder of what a beautiful area New Orleans is -- not to mention Biloxi, Jackson, Gulfport, and all of the other cities that were pounded by these storms.

I thought I was having a bad week, and my problems are NOTHING in comparison to what is going on down there. It's a reminder for us all, of our own frailty.