Sunday, March 25, 2007

In Like A Lamb

The March weather has been a definite treat so far, with the smell of Spring in the air. With an earlier-than-norm Daylight Savings already in effect, it's been a treat to leave work with daylight and spring breezes to greet me. It's so nice to be able to leave work at a normal hour, had I still been in Product Management that would not be the case; my friends over there have still been pulling long hours and ridiculous deadlines. Ah, well...suckaz! Tsk, tsk...didn't take me long to be a gloater!

Our new coffee and endtables arrived last Tuesday, they are stunning! At least we think so, they are a painted metal with a slate top and heavier than you can even imagine. We are now officially out of excuses for getting the house in order. It's time to git 'er done.

Kenny and I successfully pissed the weekend almost away once again. Friday we decided to go back to the new Erie casino. We gamble as a hobby, and acknowledged we need to find something else to do with our time. So we enjoyed it, but agreed that it will be our last gambling venture until we go to Niagria in June to see Huey Lewis. That's really not such a great feat, since it's only 2 1/2 months away, but it's a start for us. We - as usual - don't have any winning stories to recount, as they pertain to us. However, we did witness a woman named Eleanor win 7 jackpots - one of them for $100,000. She was playing a $10 slot machine and hit the motherload and we saw her. Erie does this thing where they have a DJ announcing all those who win over $1,000 and her name had been called about 5 times before the $100,000 win. We confirmed it was the same Eleanor. Well, Kenny and I were still in the "high roller" room watching the Ohio State game finish up and I watched Eleanor go from her $100,000 winner machine to a $5 slot machine and she sat down and within 5 minutes won the grand jackpot of that machine - $25,000. She later won another $5,000. People were speculating that it was a set-up, because it was a little surreal. We had another "almost us" moment, we were selecting a $5 slot to play and made the wrong choice. A man sat down at one we had considered, played 1 credit the way we do, and won $4,000. We left shortly after that...and saw a $6,000 winner on a $1 slot machine on our way out. I will tell you, they pay like crazy at that new casino. Never me, but others do win. Probably if Jill went up there, she'd clean house, she tends to be the lucky one of our group. So another "almost lucky" gaming weekend for us. That's the last of it til June.

My copy of Sky Blue and Black arrived on Thursday. It's exciting to see my friend Rob's finished product. Can't wait til it's me - but I guess that means sitting down and putting words on the computer screen, rather than just thinking about them. I do have a story in me, but it's a matter of getting the words out that's key.

I've finally finished up the invites for my grandmother Sophie's 90th birthday extravaganza in May. I debated to have professional invites done, but decided to just do a simple document in Word because the whole luncheon thing is going to cost around $700 as it is if everyone invited attends. Why spend unnecessary money on a piece of paper that will get thrown in the trash. The trick is going to be getting it printed - our new Windows Vista came with a host of problems, including printer incapatabilities. I've burned it to a DVD and will attempt to print them at work (I only need about 25 black & white copies) but I have a niggling feeling that there will be an "unsupported features" problem with my version of Word and the one I have at work. I'll give it an attempt tomorrow and see what happens. It's a shame when things go so wrong all the time that you anticipate problems before they arise. That just seems to be the way it goes lately.

Our datenight movie selection this week was Sandra Bullock's new one, Premonition. It was fraught with holes in the plot, buildups that went nowhere and a disappointing ending. I have a premonition that it won't last long in the theaters.

I made a tough decision this week to stop fighting for monetary issues that are under $10. It was tough, and it's going to be hard to do, but the anxiety that comes with fighting for every wronged $2.00 charge just isn't worth it anymore. I had a $1.64 freak charge from my bank and when I called them to inquire they had no solid explanation for it and the man on the phone agreed that he really didn't quite understand it either. Rather than go off on a tangent, I calmly said "well, okay then" and just let the bank have it. It's too much sometimes. Kenny was very proud of me and to do his part he has agreed to not let the large things get by him - his set-point is $25 and up. He's the King of just letting it all go rather than argue about it, which drives me crazy. It will be a challenge for both of us and it will be interesting to see how it works out.

Peace, be safe, and enjoy the lamb of March!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

A Writer Writes

Well, here it is! For the first time in paperback, my friend Rob Murdoch's book, Sky Blue and Black, is published and for sale at, as well as a few other website venues. Amazon will take you to all the other stores if you'd like to check out the work of a local author and support his writing endeavors. Who knows, you just might even end up enjoying yourself! Rob is a good friend of mine, I use him as an outside sounding board for all the quirkiness in my life and he usually helps see things as they are and not clouded by emotion. He's also my inspiration for starting my own blog, trying to finish reading a classic (The Great Gatsby) and one day writing my own story. He's bet that I will be no further along with my own book by the end of 2007 than I am currently - which is nowhere except in my mind. Just to prove him wrong I will motiviate myself because I derive great enjoyment from telling him to suck it. That will be one of the dedications in my book, when - not if - it gets written: "I'd like to thank my family and friends for supporting me, but most of all I'd like to tell Rob to suck on this!". Classy opening for my book.

Top 'O the Mornin' to all you Irish and wanna-be Irish folks. I am neither Irish nor a wanna-be, I don't get all caught up in the celebration festivities. I do use it as an excuse to have my once-a-year corned beef sandwich and for putting an extra dose of Irish Cream in my coffee. But I am happy to say that I don't need to participate in a Kegs & Eggs breakfast extravaganza or go stand in the cold to watch a parade. Kenny rates the celebration right up there with Flag Day.

We celebrated the day with an early supper at Kenny's grandparents house. I look forward to going over there for a meal because there is always some type of jello dish served with every meal - and they are always my favorite part. Yesterday's jello dish was Pretzel Salad, which is one of my favorites.

Kenny's mom Linda purchased a Nintendo Wii game system and we hooked it up yesterday and played for about four solid hours. Kenny showed Marge (who's 88) how to do it and she was a Wii champion by the end of the evening.

The four of us (Kenny, Linda, Marge and myself) took a "Wii Fitness Test", which is a segment the game offers. You participate in a series of short tests for three different games and it assesses an "age" for you based on your stamina, strength and balance. The games were bowling, baseball and tennis. Let me tell you, I was winded! My Wii Age came back as 71. I have the stamina, balance and strength of a 71 year old person. Linda outperformed me at 67 years, and Marge - who, let me state again is 88 - beat us both and was rated as a 65 year old. Kenny was standing near the phone because he just knew he was going to be making a 911 call that one of us had thrown ourselves into the television. He did take the test and came in with a Wii age of 29. It's so nice to be dating a younger man! He, of course, is stuck with a 71 year old - poor him. This little exercise reinforced the need that I need to continue Walking My Way to Fitness each morning, as I've been doing for the past week before work.

Timmy and Kenny took an overnight boy trip to Detroit and Windsor Thursday/Friday. They had a good time, but did not have one bit of Irish luck smilin' down on them. Kenny spent .... well, more than he would have if I had been with him, because I would have pushed him off the chair at the card tables and put a barstool leg through his skull to get him to stop. That's why he needed a trip with another boy - so he could be in charge of himself without me yelling at him, which is what happens just about every time we gamble together. Timmy, on the other hand, got yelled at when they came home. His girlfriend Tina had a complete meltdown which I witnessed firsthand when she came over to the house on Friday and dropped off his "bag of broken love dreams" - tokens from their romance - because he wasn't home by 6:00 p.m. on Friday. She was an hysterical mess and I of course told her she was acting insane, which didn't do much to ease the situation. I'm not always known for tact. But it was an interesting situation to watch, and it made me so glad to be where I'm at in my life: secure enough with myself and respectful enough of my partner to live life without jealous tantrums. Good Lord, it was painful - yet good gossip - to watch a 40-year-old woman acting like that. She needs Rob in her life to tell her she's acktin' a' foo.

That's it for the week. Still lovin' my new job, renamed my fish Sushi, still working on invites for my grandmother Sophie's birthday party in May, and finishing up my taxes. Just a nice slice of ordinary life and I couldn't be happier.

Peace, be safe and secure with who you are in life!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Blog, Blog, Blog....

It's been a busy couple of weeks, which seems to be the norm in my life anymore. I don't have quiet, uneventful weeks anymore, which means I must be quite busy living life. I started full-time in my new position at work as a Product Insights Analyst. I've been very insightful! I do think I'm going to love this job, so far so good. Mimi brought me a cube-warming gift of a new Siamese Fighting Fish I've appropriately named Blue 2, since I used to have a blue fish at work. It's so nice to have a cube again, where I can scratch what needs scratching with a bit of privacy!

Friday night the girls and I played cards at Jill's house. We had pizza and two varieties of cake - chocolate with buttercream frosting and carrot with cream cheese frosting - to celebrate Sally's March birthday. Vicky was the big winner and the game wrapped up really early, before 10:00 p.m. It was nice to get home after the long work week and climb into bed.

Saturday night was quite an adventure. Kenny and I went to a bar in Akron called The Barley House, where I fully expected a trap door to open and swallow me for being too old to be in the place. The young lad asked for my ID and I gave him an "I'm 40" reply and he sheepishly ushered me in. I do, however, have a zit on my nose that could assist in mistaking me for being a pre-pubescent teen. It's a doozy. My story on that - should anyone at the bar have asked - was going to be that I had to remove my nose piercing due to infection. It's in the prefect spot to carry that story.

Anyway, we went to the Barley House to meet Kenny's cousin's ex-husband, who's a Brooklyn cop named "Murph" and his friend, "Sparky B". As an aside, Sparky B's website labels him as "The Glam Slam King of the DJ Ring". Huh. I had no idea what was in store for the evening...I guess I assumed we'd be meeting at a 40something pub "where everybody knows your name" and not a college kid bar. It was very young, and I was glad I had at least put on jeans instead of the sweatpants I had been wearing throughout the day. Even in jeans I couldn't have felt more out of place. I quickly downed 3 vodka & cranberry's to ease the pain and I informed my beloved that we were just staying long enough to not appear rude in front of Murphy & Sparky. They were there DJ'ing, that's what they do, and why they were in this particular locale. Sparky did give me a shout-out from the DJ booth so I felt almost famous. Murphy was wearing 2 t-shirts, one on top said "Of course I love you, I have a hard-on, don't I" and the one underneath he proudly showed me said "I'm not a gynecologist, but I'll be happy to take a look." I am so, so, so very, very, very glad I am not 22 and dating. Good lord. But Murphy and Sparky were both really nice, we had a few (well, 6 for me) drinks and left by 11:30 p.m.

It seemed to be the week to make me feel my age. Today we had lupper (lunch/supper) at Stancato's in Parma. They make the best eggplant parm, and well, just about everything else. In the booth next to my table was some couple that I was having a hard time not staring at. The woman had to be in her 60's, wearing a jewel-red spandex "nightclub" dress, matching pumps and large "Dolly Parton" teased hair. Mind you, it was 1:00 p.m. on a Sunday afternoon. Well, I couldn't help but eavesdrop on some of their conversation and she apparently had gone to church in that get-up and she was a has-been nightclub singer or something. Kenny said she couldn't be a has-been, she was more like a "never-was."
Anyway....she was talking to her very young waitress and mentioned something regarding Jackie Gleason and the waitress said "who's she, what's she been in?" I almost spit my water across the table on that one! I think "Dolly" was shocked speechless as well and muttered "Jackie Gleason's a man." That was the end of that conversation. Kenny wasn't at the table when all that transpired and I was excited to tell him all about it. He of course had to say something to the waitress about it and she said she was born in 1987, how would she know who Jackie Gleason is/was. I tried to frame up the era for her with referencing George Burns and that was another one she'd never heard of....I didn't even touch on Milton Burle. And I noted to self that she was born 2 years after I had graduated high school. Nice. Especially after an evening at Barley House.

There's so much more mundane crap that happened, but it's just too much to fit it all in. There were returns galore (yes, girls, I did return the label-maker today!) and I was going to post a picture of my nose zit (caused by some makeup & face lotions I returned to Sephora earlier in the week) but Kenny said that's evidence of a really poor news week, if I have to post a picture of a nose pimple. Although it is big enough to warrent it's own paragraph. Kenny was going to name it Doug and asked me if it talked to me ala an episode of Family Guy.

Chris: Doctor, I need you to get rid of this zit!

Doug (Chris's Zit): You traitor!

Doctor: Whoa, that's a doosie! I bet some of those awful kids at school call you Zit Face?

Chris: No

Doctor: Papa Zit?

Chris: No

Doctor: Pus Peak?

Chris: No

Doctor: Fat ass?

Chris: Well..yeah..

Doctor: TSk, tsk..oh, that's terrible!

Lois: (Noticing Chris' pimple): Oh my God! Look at the size of that pimple, you're like a circus freak! (Laughs.) Aw, I'm just kidding, it means you're becoming a man, sweetie.

Peter: Yeah, I remember when I first became a man.

Doctor: The operation was a success. What are you going to go by now?

(Peter looks under his hospital gown)

Peter: Peter...


Peace, stay safe and enjoy the pre-spring weather!