Thursday, October 30, 2008

Even better than the LAST one...

It's the latest campaign commercial from the Honeymooning Couple!

Best forty seconds I spent all day.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Much Unconnected Rambling

Hey there, intertubes. How's it going?

Myself, I'm still attempting to rouse myself from an annoyingly persistent coldish/fluish/allergish bug that has had me in its thrall for more than a week now. It started out as a cough and sore throat, and morphed into a general drippiness with sporadic bursts of low-grade fever. Sadly, though, nothing so severe as to allow me to miss work. As is true of all the moms I know, I feel I must save up those days for either kid illnesses or major coronary events.

Nor, I must admit, did it keep me from having a hella good time at Karla May's bachelorette bacchanalia lake-house getaway this past Saturday night with Jaye, Bookhart, Lindsay, and several other super-fun MILFs.

It was truly an evening for self-discovery; for example, I discovered that I SUCK at Guitar Hero, that I am not the indisputable karaoke queen that I thought I was, AND that I can, by myself, put a huge dent in a box of Target cabernet. (OK, truth be known, I had kinda already figured out that last one already.)

Ah, but my favorite find of the weekend had to be the videos that were provided for Karla May's edutainment by a friend of hers. I herein present to you an excerpt from the "Girls Night Out Club Dance" instructional videos:

Starring (named by us): Ashlee! Danielle! And Stanley, the double-jointed transvestite with the novelty teeth!

Oh, lordy, I have not laughed so hard, for so long, in I cannot tell you when. (And, yes, Jaye, I, too, am glad that video cameras were not present to record my attempts at following their hot club moves.)

It felt good to get away from everything - the election, the job, soccer practice, and FAR FAR away from the gym and the diet - and just chill. Thanks again, y'all. (And congrats to the blushing bride and her darling BH; of course. Happy endings? They do occur, sometimes, as it turns out!)

Now, of course, I'm right back to where I was when I left; obsessing about every tiny bit of minutia I can get from my various news sources. This is so sad, y'all. This has been my approximate media schedule for the past several weeks:

6:00 AM - 9:00 AM - NPR Morning Edition
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM - (alternately, but all are visited at least twice per day) Yahoo! News, Daily Kos, Democratic Underground, Wonkette, Talking Points Memo, FiveThirtyEight.Com, Electoral-Vote.Com, and (for horrific right wingnut political porn and crazy-people monitoring purposes ONLY) FreeRepublic.
4:00 - 6:00 PM - NPR All Things Considered
7:00 - 8:00 PM - Keith Olbermann
8:00 - 9:00 PM - Rachel Maddow
9:00 - 10:00 PM - Keith Olbermann again (when I catch everything I missed putting the kids to bed during the first airing)
10:00 - 10:30 PM - The Daily Show
10:30 - 11:00 PM - The Colbert Report

And, y'see, with THAT much news to keep up with, there is just so little time left for the children, and the husband-pleasing. (Eh, they'll be fine. They can all just go play with themselves for another week.)

(Obsessive interjection: Oh. I just CANNOT. STAND IT if that horrible old man and THAT WOMAN win. I. Will. Die. I will die die die die. I might not have been an Obama cultist-true believer in the beginning, but if THAT IS WHAT IT TAKES TO BEAT THESE FUCKERS, then I AM THERE. Sign me up to bring the palm fronds. I'll say the first hosanna.)

Oh, but, on a lighter note, I am SO gay for Michelle, y'all. Aren't you? I just think she is a stone fox.

(Obsessive interjection part two: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE let her be our first lady and NOT Cindy McCain. I don't actually hate Cindy - or I didn't before that awful speech she made about Obama being un-American - but she is NOTHING compared to Michelle. And, oh, dear god, Todd Palin...TODD PALIN! AIEEE!)

And, to sum up...yeah, there be no theme present this evening. I am themeless., lacking a conclusion.

So, this blog posting hereby receives a C- in freshman English.

Friday, October 24, 2008

In Which I Defend Myself From Charges of Being A Crazy Cat Lady

We have a pet problem. Or, as perhaps my husband would argue, I have a pet problem; and, unfortunately for him, I live here.

And, if you only hear HIS side of the story, it looks, on the outside, that I have been personally responsible for bringing four animals into this house within the past 20 months.

But, I do humbly offer that, if the whole story is told, he bears some responsibility for the pet load.

And, it begins thusly:

When I met The Man in 1994, lo these many years ago, he lived in a crappy, dirty, bachelor pad-slash-cockroach farm over on the east side, with two roommates, and THREE CATS. (Hank, Patsy, and Dizzy. Yes, he was a music writer. However, they were all girls - even Hank and Dizzy - so perhaps he was going through a gender-confused period. Don't quote me on that.) I had, at the time, just one little kitten, my little Molly girl.

SO, at the time we met, HE was the crazy cat lady. I just want to make that PERFECTLY CLEAR.

Of course, when we moved in together in '95, we combined cats; his three, and my one. The four of them lived together in more or less harmony for many years; though, truth be told, Molly never really ceded trust to any of these interlopers. (Particularly Hank, she of the paranoia and the screaming yowl. The Man found her one night on the street while riding his bike home, and carried her, squirming, all the way home, cat in one hand, bike in the other. He was going to take her to the pound the next day, but then she was all in his lap. SUCKER!!!)

Things, pet-wise, were very stable, through a marriage, house-purchasing, and two kids. A couple of years ago, as we had dreaded for some time, we started to lose our (by now older) kitties. First sweet, cool Dizzy died, suddenly and without warning, as was her way. No frills, no fuss.

Right after that, the OG was going through a lot of anxiety - A LOT of anxiety - and it occurred to me that perhaps a pet was what she needed. My thoughts turned to a small dog, but upon a trip to Petco to investigate doghouses, a cat shelter lady stuck Curbie, the king of laid-back cats, into my arms. I brought him home, the OG flung him over her crooked elbow with not a complaint from the cat, and he was ours forever.

Here is Curbie, the former mangy waif, and now lump of fat smug bastardness:

But, you know? In my mind, Curbie was totally justified. She was freakin' out. And it worked. They've been mutually satisfied with their sleeping-together arrangements since day one. So there.

Anyway, then, the thought of a dog was still on my mind, and my mom suddenly offered to get me a Shih-Tzu. Guilty at the thought of obtaining a purebred dog, I searched in vain for some time for a small dog at the shelter; not having any luck, I eventually relented, hoping that my shelter karma had been fulfilled by Curbie's adoption the month prior. Hence Emmylou, the idiot dog, entered our lives.

(Yeah, I know. It was a lame rationalization for my actions. But, it feeds into my later actions, so stay with me.)

I tried several times to get a shot of her not licking her face. No luck. She's THAT kind of dog.

So, just to be clear, we then had: Molly, Patsy, Hank, Curbie, and the dog, EmmyLou.

But, then, our cat Hank - the yowling one found by the side of the road 12 years earlier - decided that she had had enough with the new additions, and decided to leave home. But - as we found out some weeks later, after vainly searching for her up and down every conceivable side street in our neighborhood, she did not run very far. She did, in fact, move TWO DOORS DOWN. The folks there had to feed her - what with the yowling and all - so though she had apparently decided that we could fuck off, she could not be arsed to actually run AWAY away.

OK. So, we were down now to Molly, Patsy, Curbie, and the dog. Then, my irascible Molly died last year, leaving just (yes, JUST) the two cats and the dog. The only one of our old cats left in our house was Patsy, the grouchy old woman who just wants the new kids to get off her lawn:

So, after Molly's death, I started to feel...just a little lonely for a kitteh to call my own. Thus, I began looking, half-heartedly, for a sweet cat, probably an adult shelter cat, because I still have BAD PUREBRED DOG KARMA to ward off. The girls and I saw a likely candidate at a shelter, and though they were agitating for a kitten, I gave them a long and impassioned speech about how adult cats don't get adopted, and that we really need to not get a kitten because they have a better chance of being adopted, and that this kitty had been abused and had had her front tooth kicked in and was therefore really a hard luck candidate, etc. Anyway, they seemed to buy it, and I told the shelter woman that I would likely take her.

This was Shirley, who is now Iris:

Iris, the formerly abused, and now loving (if a tince neurotic and smothering in her obsessive desire to SIT ON OUR LAP AT ALL TIMES) little girl, with the super-soft fur, and the transparent, endearing, delirious joy in the purchase of the $10 cat bed from Walgreens.

And then? The next morning? I saw Stella at the vet's office, with her little kitten self all clamoring at me:

Could you turn that down? No, I THINK NOT. Stella, adored by all, threatened by none, quickly realized that she owned this effing place. The prize sleeping spot in the house - square at my feet in my cushy pillowtopped bed - has been hers from the moment she arrived, and no one dares to challenge her (mostly because she will jump on them and bite their heads).

Still with me? I'm amazed.

HOWEVER, even I will entertain the notion that the addition of two cats within - um, two weeks - was not, perhaps, the most cognitively well-planned-out thing I have ever done.

Anyway, we were now up to (in order of acquisition): Patsy, Curbie, EmmyLou (the dog,) Iris, and Stella. That, you will agree, I am sure, is the absolute end number of animals that anyone should have in an 1,800 square foot home, correct?

Oh, but wait:

Last week The Man calls up and says to me, "Um...I caught Hank."

So, guess who also now lives with us, again? After not living here for like a year? Yep, it's the yowly one herself, now almost 15 years old, and sullenly (though not altogether unwillingly, it is cold, after all) submitting herself to house rule again:

So, at final count, we are now up to: Patsy, Hank, Curbie, Emmylou, Iris, and Stella.

So, your honor, I submit:

  • I am not the original cat lady of the family;
  • TWO of the animals were The Man's, originally;
  • I am only REALLY responsible for bringing home TWO AND A HALF of the other animals, because a) Curbie belongs to the OG, who needed him for THERAPUTIC REASONS, and b) because Emmylou is really not smart enough to construe one whole living entity. She only counts for a fraction of an animal;
  • And who knew Hank was ever coming home, anyway?
I rest my case.

*However, I fear he may trump me on one, small issue...he works at home all day, and thus has to be around them, like, 24/7. Again, though, that's not MY fault. He coulda been a pilot or something; I'm just sayin.'

Oh, but you must indulge me in a couple more pictures before I let you go.

The other night, when I went in to turn the OG's closet light out, I saw this sordid scene taking place in her bedroom:

No worriez, though. I iz not to tell of ur sekrit kitteh love.

Sunday, October 19, 2008


I admit it; the Obama has me in his sway.

I found out when I got a weird little frisson when I voted today; sort of the "thrill down my leg" that Chris Matthews described. It was one of the first times I've felt really thrilled about a vote. (Maybe THE first time, come to think of it. I haven't voted for a string of super winners in my life, beginning with Dukakis and onward.

Eh, I guess I'd warmed pretty significantly to Clinton right before his first term, but I still thought he was too centrist for me to truly love. By the end of his first term, I was CERTAIN of that, and pulled the lever as a dutiful Democrat, but with no real enthusiasm. I didn't love Al Gore until his damned concession speech, when I saw the glimmer of the great man within, and I wept tears of pure anger that night; anger AT HIM, for not revealing it to us sooner.

Kerry was fine, but I responded to him cerebrally, not emotionally. He seemed a sensible choice, and a generally right-thinking person, other than the ever-lovin' war, of course. Sadly, though, I watched him, too, fall to the same evil slander - worse, even, this was a frickin' WAR HERO - that felled Gore. And, I knew it was going to happen when I cast my vote; hence, I was totally dejected when I did it.

I am certain that I am a walking cliche, for this, among many other, reasons. I am an edumacated, latte-drinkin' (and, is that not the most obnoxious stereotype? Every GD small-town lady I'VE met up in the wilds of Salado and Rockdale are more than familiar with a variety of different milky-frothy coffee drinks, and many even have the differing espresso/cappucino/latte cups to offer it to you in!) Austin-residing liberal with the fuel-efficient vehicle and the jam-packed recycling bin.

But, I dare say, I am feeling the H-word.

I hate to jinx anything, and I am indeed a superstitious fucker about these things. (Actually, that's only true of politics and football. Oh, dear god, WHAT AWFUL FUCKING FOOTBALL WENT ON THIS WEEKEND. But I digress.) I know it isn't over yet, and that a lot can happen in two weeks.

But what went on this weekend? When we learned that Hopey earned $150 MILLION dollars from people like me, contributing $35 with crossed fingers that we make it to the end of the month without going over?

And this horrible scary Michelle Bachmann, of the crazy eyes and the McCarthy-esque purge wishes? She goes on television, shooting her mouth off about ridding Congress of all those anti-Americans...and within 72 hours afterwards, her opponent - with the unlikely name of Elwyn Tinklenberg - has suddenly had $600 THOUSAND DOLLARS contributed to his election campaign?

And that our Democratic candidate for state representative - in TEXAS - in our GERRYMANDERED DISTRICTS, if y'all will recall our redistricting legislative folly from a few years back - IS COMPETITIVE? And the Senate candidate - while not as close; John Cornyn is a formidable foe - is within single digits?

It's the little things like this - and not just That One - that are giving me reason to jump a little bit in the voting booth. (I did, just a teeny bit. Just a little bounce.)

Even if - EVEN IF - the worst thing happens...then I know, more than ever before, that I am NOT alone in this country, and I am NOT the "fringe."

For just a little bit, it's been great to be in the majority.

And no, I do NOT want to recap the UT-Missouri football game this weekend.

That we WENT TO. And paid for NOT ONLY a babysitter, but ALSO the horribly expensive tickets (within three figures! Apiece! Yes! My going-out money for MORE THAN A WHOLE MONTH!) for what was the shittiest three hours I have spent since - oh, since I stopped having to go to the laundromat!

The Man - who should have been thrilled - was even disappointed. "I'm sorry, honey," he says to me, EVEN KNOWING that his tail-allottment for the month was seriously in jeopardy - "I was really hoping that this would be a competitive game!"

Bah. BAH. Heisman trophy, my large midwestern ass.

Speaking of money we don't have, I am thinking of getting a new couch.

In what is just an awful turn of events, the idiot Shi-Tzu took out her miffedness - about us not keeping her backyard mowed to her low-slung tickly-bellied satisfaction, apparently - out on us by PEEING on it.

I have soaped and sterilized and vinegared and Pet-Pee-B-Gone'd it to death, but when it's humid in here, it just...still smells. (And, it smells like all the other stuff I put on it, too. So it smells like really clean, and vinegary...pee.)

Anyway, I'm considering this:

Thoughts? You don't have to like it. I can dig it. But I'd like to move in a more contemporary direction, you know?

I have the 50's house, I think I should have some 50's-like furniture, too. Only microfiber. Because - well, we have a goddamn PEEING DOG.*

*who is now under couch arrest. Like, she is faced with four vociferous shouts of "GET OFF THE COUCH" whenever her eye gaze falls more than a foot above the floor.


Finally, I leave you with my geekiest YouTube ever.

I give you: "Les Misbarack"

Fair warning: There is a musical involved. But it is only three minutes. You will live.

But if you love this sort of thing -as I do, with all my heart - then enjoy. And I love "Eponine."

Monday, October 13, 2008

Girl Scout Camping, 2008

Camping isn't what it used to be, back when I was a girl, sleeping in a friggin' field for that one night of "Day Camp," in North Kansas City, MO, sans tent.

And for this, thank you, Baby Jesus.

I was told there would be cabins, but I was not expecting what was, essentially, a lodge:
I know it's not all that fancy or anything, but this wasn't the dining hall...this was our CABIN. Or, rather, this was the dining/commons area of our cabin, with the ceiling fans and tasteful wrought-iron light fixtures, AND

the real-live mattresses on our "rustic-look" bunks, AND

the television, VCR, boom box, and comfy couches, AND

the fridge, microwave, sink, toaster oven, and TWO WASHERS AND TWO DRYERS.

This was the brand-new dining hall:

.. chock full o' wired girls and goddamn near HOMICIDALLY PISSY moms:

Next year, I am SO bringing hooch. And I won't chicken out again. Like I, every other time.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I'm Finding My Happy Place

Hey! Hi! I've been at Girl Scout camp all weekend! Yes, again! It was that time again!

And there's this Girl Scout song about a "Rigabamboo?" (Sp?) That they sing seven or eight times a day? And it stays in your head for ever and ever and ever?

Wine. Silence. Oh, pretty please?

Thursday, October 09, 2008

This is the only thing that made me laugh today:

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Round Two

Another debate over, Sen. Hopey won, blah blah blah.

"That one?" Please. McLame, your condesencion is so five weeks ago.

What REALLY bears commenting upon is how COOL the Debate Pleasureometers on CNN are.

Have you seen these? Apparently, they gave a bunch of Undecided Ohio Votors some little knobs that they can twiddle to indicate whether they liked an answer, or were meh on it, or REALLY REALLY LIKED it, or REALLY REALLY HATED it, and thus generate a very compelling little advancing line graph, with a different color line for men and for women. (Hard to say for sure, but it appeared that the wimmin were definitely playing with their knobs for Barry. His baritone is really nice, I must admit.)

Seriously, men...wouldn't you just LOVE if the women in your life had a little Pleasureometer, so that you could immediately see her response to whatever you're saying or doing? Like, you took out the trash AND did the dishes AND dusted the blinds unbidden, and you could look over at the line graph on her forehead, and be all like "MAN, I am in GOOD tonight?"

Or, conversely, when you leave your goddamn size thirteen boats under the coffee table for the ten millionth time, you could just check your stats real fast, and thus stop the grouchy train that is about to plow through the living room?

I'm just sayin'.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Too Drunk to Text

Hmm...I am finding that I truly am a gal of the new millenium. Gosh, there's a whole new world of stuff out there that I can now be too drunk to do!

Actually, I'm sober now; I was drunk on FRIDAY (as I always am when Karla stops in on her semi-annual trips home). However, the hangover lasted through Saturday, AND Sunday...and, in a Mags first, pretty much for most of the day today, albeit in a new and exciting old-lady form that I shall not describe in detail here.

It was a good time, man. A bunch of my favorite bloggers - Lee, Bookhart, Badger, Karla May, Malcontent Mama, and Jaye - and several new friends, including Dave here, met at Opal Devine's for drinks-n-fried pickle spears (the latter of which burned the roof of my mouth into hamburger. I know. Gross. But it bore noting.)

In the quest to be fabulously good on my diet, I ate only a few little shrimp, and judiciously - of course - chose MARTINIS to drink. I think I had two, and then switched to wine. We then advanced to the Jackalope, wherein they pour the MOST DELICIOUS creamy thick Belhaven Scottish Ale you have EVER had...and they were FREE, thanks to the, of course, I had to throw a couple of beers into that equation.

How lit up was I? Who can say, really. The only solid evidence that I have is that I accidentally drunk-texted Connie when I was trying to drunk-text Cristen to see how the kids were doing. (Connie was not, in fact, watching my children, as it turns out, because she lives 2000 miles away. So, you can imagine her confusion. And mine, because I still have a slow-texting one-letter-at-a-time cell phone, and that was a whole damn lot of letters to punch in to say something like " not babysitting for me! Haw! Haw haw haw!")

Rumor has it that, upon picking up my children at the Noxious's house, that Bob teased me for being inebriated, at which I declared loudly "I'm not inebriated, I'M AWESOME!" But that is unsubstantiated, I must remind you. (Except by Cristen and Lee...and, really, who trusts then?)

Thankfully, nobody has any pictures of it. AND DON'T GO LOOKING AT KARLA'S BLOG. Because there are NO PICTURES THERE. Walk away.

For what it's worth, I paid for it dearly the rest of the weekend. I was unable to participate in the Flying Saucer beer festival the next day, and just didn't have the stomach (or the heat tolerance) to go nuts at North By Northwest's Oktoberfest on Sunday.

But, Karla - you always bring the fun. Hope you don't have to bring it so far for much longer.
So I have to go to bed now. Nothing to stay awake for.

Because The Man had to attend the funeral of an old friend today - one that was our age, with kids the same age as ours - in his old hometown that was just handed a death sentence of its own, and we are solidly bummed.

Because I can't watch Heroes, due to some stupid effing fee fight between our NBC affiliate and Time Warner Frakkin Cable.

Because my entire lower abdomen feels as though I've been eating helium balloons made of sandpaper and then doing lemon juice shooters.

Because my younger child, still in the throes of her CRAZINESS, has worn me out.

Because if I watch any more Olbermann or Maddow today - with the McCain/Palin Sofa King Stupid Crappe Du Jour - I will pull my own eyeballs out.

Day? I am SO OVER you.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Thursday, October 02, 2008


I'm glad that debate's over. Just two more to agonize through, and then I'm done for a few, precious years.

Honestly, I thought she didn't do too badly...IF all you were looking for was her ability to formulate complete sentences. I know, many of you were doubting that, but hell, she was a sportscaster, after all. She knows how to speak to a camera. And, she was clearly well prepped, and delivered her answers with proper enunciation.

And, it was just a little cute, how she beamed every time she knew that she was going to get to deliver a good line. Snaps to Sarah; she had clearly rehearsed how to say "Ahmadinejad," so much so that she just had to repeat it, like, five times in rapid succession. We were thinking we should have made a drinking game.

But, sadly, I was listening to what she said, and, well, she didn't say much. Hey, though, she, herself, admitted that she wasn't going to answer the questions in the way the moderator wanted...and, she was true to her word. Talking points only, no deviation, and not a lot of concern about exactly what question was being asked.

She didn't commit a lot of obvious flubs, which is probably all the McCain camp could hope for...except for not apparently knowing what an "Achilles Heel" is. She also looked a bit robotic when she continued with this incessant drumming of the points even right after Joe Biden almost choked up when talking about his critically injured son. And, the part about his joke being lame didn't go over like I think she wanted (or, to be fair, like I think she meant it). That just sounded sorta bitchy, or nervous.

But, I did have a strong negative reaction to a few things, particularly the "folksiness." Golsh darn dang golly Uncle Clem, I cannot bear to hear this for the next four years. Seriously. It's affected, and it shows, and it's INSULTING. And when she said "There you go again," - trying DESPERATELY to blow the sweet dead breath of Ronald Reagan on this campaign - I damn near hurled my teacup through the television.

Oh, and when she said that it didn't matter what caused global warming, they were just by gosh for fixin' it. And that it didn't matter what got us into Iraq in the first place. Because, you know, that "science" or "history" crap just don't matter.


Now, I ask you, how many vice presidential candidates, in the past, have WINKED AT THE CAMERA? Does she think that's charming, or is it a nervous tic?

My read on it is that it's not intentional, it's just how she's used to getting her way. Flirting and grinning and giving coy little winks, while tossing out generality after generality until you really have no idea what she has said. But it was, to me, a horrifying gender throwback.

At worst, though, she fought to a draw...and that's only if you are looking at the pageantry along with the substance. On the meat, there is no question that Joe had her smackjawed.

For tonight, though, live to fight another day. I think your base will be pleased. We shall see if any of the rest of us go along.