Friday, February 29, 2008

A Scrambled Leap

Hi.



Nothing new has happened. I just wanted a date stamp that said February 29. Although I still don’t understand why it’s called a “leap year.” Leaping, to me, implies springing forward. But shoving an extra 24 hours into the year kinda slows the whole thing down by… well, by 24 hours. Am I missing something?

* * * * * *

I’m taking a photography class, but so far have nothing to show for it. (Hence the lack of mentioning it, previously.) Unfortunately, after class #2 and still no concept of what I’m doing, or how to get the damn things onto my computer not to mention onto the program, which I am still afraid to load onto said computer, I fear the whole thing can’t bode well for my aspiring photo-journalist skeelz.

* * * * * *

The Funasaurus is taking me to a basketball game, tonight. Confession: I am going to watch the cheerleaders and eat junk food.

* * * * * *

Mmmm, Dippin' Dots.

* * * * * *

I can’t get rid of the car I crashed. I tried to donate it, but they want the title, which I have conveniently lost. I found out you can get a duplicate of the title if you go to the DMV, so I went to the DMV. Except apparently I somehow managed to register the car without the title ten years ago, so the title is still back in California. So I called the California DMV, and they had me fill out 42 forms and then some, and then they told me to do it on-line, except I can’t, because you’re not allowed to if you don’t have a California driver’s license. I haven’t had one of those since Savage Garden was hot. So I am mailing in the forms, although they don’t seem to want any information that doesn’t pertain to California, which is unfortunate, because I have no such information, including a NAME, which I have also changed since CA knew me. But they will still take my $17, thank you very much.

I am not-so-slowly going crazy.

* * * * * *

I know a secret, but I’m not allowed to tell, and oh! It’s very exciting. I will tell just as soon as I am allowed.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Provincial Passion

Here’s the thing about having a looming honeymoon in the middle of February. It leads to all sorts of drastic fantasies about tropical places and not coming back and quick mental calculations about how long you could survive on coconut milk if you were to sell your home.

In short, my work is suffering and I am making my own valiant efforts to restimulate the economy, mostly via the bathing suit and accessories industry. (Also and by the way, does such a thing as organic insect repellent exist, and if it does, does it actually work?)

This behavior has actually led me to think fondly of any time I have spent in a sunnier, warmer place, but most particularly, my time in southern France. Even the “cold” there was romantic. In February, I certainly had to wear a coat. And the wind was icy cold, and it always blew. It came down from Siberia, and was called Le Mistral, and basically had its own magical presence in a culture that made everything from olives to granite sexy and mysterious.

Aix-en-Provence is the geographical equivalent of the most amazing sex you’ve ever had with the most passionate lover you’ve ever had, but in your heart you know is not marriage material. Strawberries as big as your fist! Open air cafes where kisses are blown, nutella crepes are eaten, and young girls are wooed by five-star chefs. (oh, yes.)

The cobalt blues and sunflower yellows! Those are not my real colors. I am more of a grayish-blue kinda girl. I felt at home in calm, orderly, cheese-loving Switzerland with its snow-capped mountains. There’s a method to the goat madness. But Aix made me believe in cobalt, gypsies, and pastis, despite the fact that I loathe licorice. And for a short time, I could pretend every room in my home would smell like lavender fields.

I knew where to buy the most almond-y calissons, (hint: not THAT link) and ate them with great abandon. I shunned the Americans in their shorts and flip-flops, I cloaked myself in black and boots, even the summertime, and thought deep, passionate thoughts while I got drunk on kir peche and perfected my southern drawl. (Because no matter what country you go to, I sincerely believe the southern accent will be the most distinct.) I believed in palm trees and entire villages made from white stone, and tromped around in the woods alone on the weekend, almost hoping to get impaled by a wild boar. What a great blog entry that would have made….

I revered C├ęzanne and Van Gough, painting Mont St. Victoire and thinking the olive groves were all quite a delicious place to go insane.

And I left a piece of my soul there. A small one, there’s not much room for grey in a place with that much vibrant yellow. It exhausts me thinking about it, as any good lover’s memory should.

Meanwhile I’ve set my sights on the Caribbean, and well, Colorado. I love you. But the lack of a ski pass has made this winter infinitely harder than any other year. We’re not selling our home (yet) but The Funasaurus and I need a little break. I’ll write from a new shade of aqua blue, if we’re not drunk on the umbrella drinks, yet.

Ciao, bella.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Dear Thighs, Please Stop with All the Expanding

At some point I came across the realization that if I am headed to somewhere tropical for a week, perhaps I’d want to bring a swimsuit. Because my standard t-shirt and jeans attire is not going to cut it on the beach.

I have not gotten a new bathing suit since college. (read: 6+ years ago… at least.) That is because I would prefer to get a root canal than try on swimsuits in a department store with lots of young, waifish sales people there to see and judge.

In a desperate attempt at self-help and a nod to Global Warming (finally working in my favor, hello 60 degrees in February!) I decided to go for a jog yesterday morning, before taking the death-walk to the mall. (And by “walk” I mean “drive”. “In my new car, tra la.”) Because obviously jogging lightly for 25 minutes is going to negate an entire winter of sitting on the couch and alternating my diet between pizza and red meat. With, maybe, three total yoga classes thrown in the last four months for good measure.

Surprisingly, my jog did not delete my ever-expanding posterior.

And then the fluorescent lighting obliterated any last bit of self-esteem I might ever have had.

Sorry, baby, I used our travel insurance and we are now headed on a nice honeymoon to Antarctica where you can smooch me under my five layers of ski pants and a very poofy, fur-lined parka, and no one can tell how big anyone’s butt is, for all the layers of polypro.

Plus, penguins! Hooray!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Why I Didn't Get the New Wife of the Year Award

After a weekend of fast food and copious amounts of beef jerky, I decided to cook something a little lighter for dinner last night. I found a recipe for chicken cutlets that looked tasty, and somehow convinced myself that the recipe calling for anchovy paste was absolutely no problem, despite the fact that the man I married orders his cheeseburgers with “no lettuce, no tomato, no cheddar, just American cheese, please” lest they taste too complicated.

I was in the midst of preparing the meal when The Funasaurus got home, specificially,I was busy doing a taste-test of the dry white wine that it called for, when he wandered over to see what was cooking. I was not able to chug my glass quite fast enough before he had glanced at the recipe, and I saw his sweet brown eyes swell in fear.

“Does… does that say ‘anchovies,’ baby?” he asked, failing miserably at hiding his horror.

“Paste! It says anchovy paste, darling,” I said, swooping it away. “That basically means ‘salt’ with perhaps a vague seafood flavor. But don’t worry, you can’t taste actual anchovy flavor at all,” I said.

He wandered away, calculating whether it was worth enduring my wrath to make a quick dash to Quizos.

We sat down to eat, and we both scarfed the green beans, before turning to the chicken. “Mmmm!” I said, as though my verbal endorsement would make a difference in his discriminating tastes. It was good, but there was more anchovy flavor than I had remembered.

The Funasaurus bravely took a healthy bite, and tried not to gag. Then he looked scared, like I was going to beat him.

Then I felt guilty not only for cooking a meal I had known he’d hate, but for apparently having given him the impression that violence might be such a likely occurrence in our young marriage.

Then Tatum helped himself to the sauce on The Funasaurus' plate while we were distracted figuring out what else we could do for his dinner. It's been fun to clean the litter box today!

The Funasaurus finished his night off with Honey Nut Cherrios, and I had good leftovers for lunch, today. And we both felt much better after having a Klondike Oreo Cookie for dessert.

Fortunately, tonight he’s on his own. But I’m thinking I may owe him pepperoni pizza, tomorrow. Maybe I won't even sneak anchovies onto my half, this time.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

And a Carriage for my Luggage

We survived Phoenix, The Funasaurus purchased new movies, I didn’t drink as heavily as I had planned, and Sugar wasn’t even hateful when we got home. Tatum didn’t even seem to have noticed that we were gone, he was just like, “Mouse!Mouse?Mouse.Mouse!Mouse: MOUSE!Mouse?” when we walked in the door. Which is a typical evening for him. Sugar has been more clingy and “oh how sad I am. I was so alone,” in her demeanor, and I feel bad, because that was only four and a half days. And in two months, we’re going to be gone for seven.

That’s right, we’re going on our honeymoon! Finally! Hooray! The universe has smiled upon me. (Momentarily. The tickets are bought. We’ll see if we run into a freak hurricane.) We’re headed to a whole week of umbrella drinks and Caribbean sun. I may not come back. Likely because I will have fried myself to a crisp, in another futile attempt at getting “tan.”

The sad part is that for some silly reason, my boss thinks I’m going to WORK between now and the end of April, despite the fact that I clearly explained to him that I’m going on my honeymoon. It seems slightly unreasonable to me that he would think I’d be able to concentrate on anything else.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Where Is the Love?

I’m about to head out on a 14 hour road trip with my husband, and the in-laws. I get to spend Valentine's night sharing a hotel room with my mother-in-law, instead of my husband. The iPod and flask are stocked. We’re going to...wait for it... Phoenix. Whooo-hoo. At least it’s not snowing there.

Sigh.

The universe is, once again, smiting me.

I have moved my office home, only to discover that the two new lines I had installed for my work phone and fax don’t work. We set up a separate account for my work stuff, and having two accounts at one address gets the phone company’s panties in a bunch, and it freaks out. And has a lot of trouble processing work orders because OMG, TWO ACCOUNTS WHAT DO WE DO?! THIS IS SO COMPLEX EVEN OUR MANAGERS CANNOT HANDLE IT!

KAPOW! (That was my brain... popping.)

I bought The Funasaurus a chocolate, heart-shaped brownie with chocolate icing and gave it to him to take to work today. Because I’m romantic like that. He left it at home, so I ate it. I figure he had his chance. I was also hungry like that.

Happy naked babies with bows and arrows day! I'm off to somewhere where it's not snowing! And I don't have to shave my legs!

Love,
Princess-is-11:45AM-too-early-for-a-stiff-drink?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Reason # 495 I Will Not Have Children

Friday I spent most of the afternoon at the emergency vet’s, because poor little Sugar was puking her little guts out, and feeling very embarrassed about it, thus leading her to choose the most inopportune places to leave little puddles of kitty puke. (Under the bed! Behind the sofa! Under the TV stand!)

Alarmed, I took her to the Very Important Emergency Vet, where they did exactly nothing to make me feel better. Sugar lost her kitty shit, between being sick and being poked by needles in a less-than-coddling-way, she was frantic. The vet took some blood (goodbye, honeymoon!) and asked gravely if I thought she should take x-rays and an ultrasound. (Goodbye vacation ever again EVER.)

Um, I don’t know, jackass. Aren’t you the vet?

So she explained that if there was a blockage, or something, that it wouldn’t show up in the bloodwork, they’d need to see it on an ultrasound, because it could be very dangerous and explode. On the other hand, it could just be a huge tumor, that they could see on an x-ray, and while Sugar may only have seconds to live, they could prescribe me some medicine for a million dollars to treat it.

What’s a kitty momma to do?

My gut told me that there was no blockage. The vet kept asking if Sugar had eaten anything she wasn’t supposed to, a toy, or something like that. And I said, “No, that would be Tatum. He’s part goat. Sugar is more... particular. She really only likes dry kibble. In a porcelain bowl.”

So I looked at Sugar who was on the verge of scratching her own eyes out (her attempt at scratching mine having thus-far failed) and I decided that no medical procedure was worth putting her through the extreme panic she appeared to be going through. So I paid a couple hundred dollars for the bloodwork, and took Sugar home.

I called The Funasaurus in tears, wondering if I had made the right decision.

“They wanted to charge you WHAT? We don’t need to pay thousands of dollars for an x-ray to tell us she has the KITTY FLU, baby.” he reassured me.

Sure enough, the next morning, Sugar was running around, eating, drinking, and terrorizing Tatum with her back-from-the-vet smell. She was also Pissed Off that I was trying to feed her medicine when, obviously, she was SO over it.

The vet called the next day to see if she was dead yet from her lack of x-rays and ultrasounds, and I told her that no, in fact, Sugar seemed perkier than ever, probably because I had bribed her with a copious amount of treats from the supermarket, the kitty equivalent of about a dozen Big Macs. And also, since she was doing so great, could I stop giving her the medicine? The vet said no, it’d be better to continue the bi-daily dosage for the next seven days. She’s a vet, but I get the feeling she doesn’t give cats medicine that often. Twice a day for seven days? Are you crazy? I don’t have that many fingers to lose!

But, dutifully, and fingerless, the dance of medicine admission has since taken place twice a day since then, and Sugar grows more hateful with each dose. But as long as she’s eating and drinking while being hateful, I can deal.

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Sugar says: You will all be punished.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Death to Squirrels

The other day The Funasaurus called me in a panic, warning me to maybe park on the street when I got home, because our garbage can was alive. Or rather, there was something alive (and, apparently, pissed off) in our garbage can.

I snorted, he never went to girl scout camp during mating season and had to contend with horny raccoons who had a taste for toothpaste in little girls’ sleepover bags. I felt confident I could handle whatever vermin were in our garage.

I got home, pulled into the garage, kicked the garbage can a couple times, and saw nothing. The Funasaurus was still suspicious, and was therefore on RED ALERT when he every time he stepped into the garage the next couple of days, whether to throw away something at the speed of light, or to make a mad dash for his car. (Baby don’t play when there’s potentially rabies involved. See also: fun-hater/salmonella-wary.) (BTW, I did not get sick from the gallon of raw cake batter I consumed, although I did get a fat, new zit on my chin.)

Sure enough, a day or so later, he swore he saw a squirrel dart out of (/into? It is unclear, it was very upsetting) our garage. I shrugged, saw him off to work, and got my own lazy ass up the stairs to the computer and spent a gleeful day working from home, because icy roads are much more terrifying to me.

Yesterday I did have to go to work, though, so I consumed a couple of mini cupcakes (really, at that size, I almost feel like they’re anti-calories. Like celery.) for breakfast, and headed off in our brand, new Civic hybrid that I love so very, very much.

A mysterious light came on, on the dashboard. And the “D” light (either for “drive” or “damn, ain’t this awesome,” I can’t be sure) started blinking. I pulled over, and fished out my owner’s manual, which was still easy to locate in the glove compartment because I have not yet had a chance to fill it up with extra tissues, flashlights, and Happy Meal Toys, that’s how new the car is. Said “mystery light” was actually the “check engine light.”

Erm.

So I got myself to a dealership, and they assured me that it was probably just a fuse, or something, new cars these days, ha ha, such sensitive computers, no worries, even if something is wrong, this car is still covered by the warranty, anyway, we’ll have you back on the road in a jiffy…. He showed me to the waiting area, where they had snacks and hot chocolate. I drank their last three packets, immediately.

45 minutes later the guy came up to get me, and kept his head down and shoulders hunched, as though I were going to hit him.

“You’re not going to like what I have to tell you.”

“You’re out of hot chocolate packets?” I asked, hopefully.

“No. Er. It appears some rodent has gotten under your car and chewed the main engine wire thing-ies.” (Not a direct quote, but fairly close.) “That’s, ah, not covered by the warranty. I hope you have insurance?”

“Yes. Ish.”

“Does it cover a rental vehicle?”

“No.”

“Um. Because an adjuster needs to come out and inspect this, if you want to claim it. And I really don’t think it’s safe to drive until it’s repaired.”

Fuck.

I called the insurance. They asked me a million questions, including the license plate number, and I had to say, “I have no idea. We still have temporary ones. It is that fucking brand new.”

I called The Funasaurus. Who had to drop some Very Important Things at work to drive all the way across the greater Denver area to come pick up my blubbering butt from the dealership in BFE. Because our insurance doesn’t cover a RENTAL VEHICLE.

The good news is that our insurance does cover the repairs, mostly, and the deductible isn’t so bad that we have to scrap our honeymoon plans, completely (knock on wood) but really. We can’t get a break with these cars. The whole point of the Very Shiny and NEW car is that you don’t have to pay for costly repairs all the time, right? Right? echo... echo... echo....

Argh.

While I’m busy being Miss Fuck-It-All, I will also say that The Hunchback of Notre Dame? Serious let-down.

::Spoiler alert!::

I’ll summarize the whole damn book for you:

It’s boring boring boring.
Then it gets good, and you get attached to some of the characters.
Then he gets wordy again.
Then everyone is sad, and devastated, and killed while in the midst of realizing how unfulfilled and miserable they are. All of them. Except for, like, the one dude you couldn’t care less about.
The only redeeming quality: the goat lives.
THE END.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Tiny Bubbles, Gaping Caverns of Snow, and Mini Bites of Heaven

Last night The Funasaurus was out, so I indulged in a bubble bath, which I haven’t done in quite a while. The premise was to ying the Hunchback of Notre Dame yang. This is the next book for our book group, and really, the three-paged descriptions of fucking marble tables and ladders was just not doing it for me. Also, I think authors who address their audience directly run a high risk of sounding really pretentious… don’t you agree?

So I settled into the bath (good bubbles, I was loving it a little too much, with the bubble beard and whatnot. I may have pushed Tatum’s face in a little. He was asking for it, peering all googly-eyed into the mountain of suds and batting them onto my book) to force myself to get to at least page 100. I declared that a suitable defeat, deeming it enough patience to arrive at book club with my head held high, ready to denounce authors who were paid by the word, as opposed to by the book.

But then… I got into it. Somewhere around the descriptions of the stupid rocks in the road, there was suddenly scandal and beatings and lust and gallows and stolen children and silk shoes. Now, I love me some stolen children and silk shoes, so I pressed on. Somewhere in there, The Funasaurus came home, sad because I had not ordered him Chinese like I had said I would. (Can’t cook dinner if I’m busy marinating myself in floral bubble bath, now can I?)

I generously offered he could join me in the bath, and he backed away liked I had asked him to dance ballet with me while shopping for a dress at the mall.

That is to say , he did not exactly seem as excited about the bath as I had hoped. I tried batting my eyelashes and hiding the soggy classic literature I was still attempting to read. He muttered something about no amount of temptation could get him to willingly boil himself (harrumph, sue me, I don’t care to bath in sub-arctic temperatures) and went off to order his take-out while I developed into a soupy, Quasimodo-loving prune over the next TWO HOURS.

Today I am still a little dehydrated, but I smell lovely, and I feel all relaxed. And we did go snowshoeing over the weekend:

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Hi.

And I know it looks all sweet and cute and bloated and whatnot, but really, if you look closely, you can see that I am holding The Funasaurus' sunglasses. That is because just moments prior, he was prying himself out of a very large hole in the snow that literally swallowed him, and I, being the supremely helpful and concerned wife, held his sunglasses for him as he struggled to get his head unburied.

And we saw a pretty door with some snow. And I took a picture.

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And I also bought the most amazing thing ever. Along with the most amazing thing-ever-maker. Which I so did not wait to use, and busted out today. Anything that lowers the cake to icing ratio, in my mind, is a Very Good Thing.

Did you know that one regular box of cake batter actually makes an ARMY of mini cupcakes? I cooked about 100 of them, before I decided that there was probably no way we could eat more than that, and so I sadly washed the rest of the batter down the drain. … After feeding myself many generous spoonfuls of raw dough, seeing as how there was no nay saying Funasaurus around with all of his fun-hating “salmonella” talk.

Now I’m off to read more of La Esmerelda’s adventures with the ol’ hunchback, all hyped up on my yellow cake and chocolate frosting high. G’night.

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(Don't even try to tell me you're not just a LEETLE bit jealous.)

Also, I feel the Grand Marnier and Jim Beam in the background give it that little je ne sais quoi....

Friday, February 01, 2008

Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit

So far this month I have:

* Woken up with a sugar hangover (thanks to a cupcake fest yesterday with the one and only, Shooting Star, who was kind enough to indulge a very severe cake and icing craving I was having [despite the fact that she’s the one who’s pregnant] and drive for 45 minutes in rush hour traffic to check out a new cupcake store.)

* Had a yogurt container explode all over:

a) the inside of my purse

b) the upholstery in my new (GAH!) car

* Made plans to brave the skier traffic and go snowshoeing this weekend

* Seen a former coworker advertise her burlesque show, and wow, that was a lot of former cube mate sequins and tush for 9:00 AM

That’s about it. But I am damned sure glad it’s Friday. Methinks there is vino in my near future. … I wouldn't say I am prophetic, so much as borderline-alcoholic.