Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Nothing Much

Not much going on today. I ran errands during lunch: bank, grocery store, buying gasoline at $1.35 cents-a-gallon for the lowest grade! At least I drive a somehwat fuel-efficient car. Hubby is helping a friend move out of his ex-girlfriends apartment. I am at work. He is off. Sometimes I wish I had his schedule. He is in the IT field. He works doing amazing stuff on computers that I could never even begin to understand. He is technologically brilliant! His schedule is this:

Week One:
Saturday 11PM to 11AM
Sunday 11PM to 11AM
Monday 11PM to 11AM
Tuesday 11PM to 11AM

Week Two:
Sunday 11PM to 11AM
Monday 11PM to 11AM
Tuesday 11PM to 11AM

His dress code is this: THERE IS NONE! He gets to wear shorts to work. UGGH!

My schedule is this: M – F, 8 – 5. My dress code is this: business to business casual.
Uggh! When it’s 100 degrees outside the last thing I want to be wearing is a dress and jacket. Fortunately I don’t have to wear hose.

Needless to say, our schedules do not always coincide and it can be difficult to find time to be together.

DAMMIT! I just got a call from the printer. Our print rep says she found a misspelled word in our copy. Of course, she did not find it until after the job was ready to be shipped. You know it doesn’t matter how many sets of eyes we have look over that thing it seems there is ALWAYS at least one mistake! UGGHHHH!!!!!! I could just scream. I am just praying that no one find it. (Yeah, right!) Oh, I am so upset right now, I cannot continue this blog. I am going to go home early!

Monday, July 29, 2002

I am listening to John Mayer –he’s great! I love Neon and 83. The CD is called Room for Squares but you can download some of his live stuff at

The Eye of the Beholder

Ah, it’s Monday. The alarms go off. Yes, that’s correct –alarms plural. It’s that glorious time of the week when we get out of bed and say “I can’t wait to start this day! Everyone at the office will be relaxed and refreshed after a lovely weekend. I know there is so much to do, learn, see, …… “ WAIT! Hold that thought. That’s what I would like to say. However, what I usually utter is something like… “Oh, no. Not again! Is it Monday already? How is it already time to go back to work.” I don’t want to fight the 25-mile one-way commute. I don’t want to leave my apartment between 7:15 and 7:20 in the morning just so I can be somewhere by 8:00 a.m. I don’t want take a 30-minute lunch. I don’t want to be dressed up when it is 98 degrees outside with 100% humidity. I don’t want to have to put my makeup on in the car on the way to work this morning. I don’t have to put on makeup at all! I didn’t wear it at all over the weekend.

In fact, it was refreshing. It was liberating. I am amazed at how late in life I am coming to discover the joy of my face being freshly scrubbed with my freckles showing. I used to have this completely convoluted idea of myself and what was attractive. I guess in some ways I still do but I’m working on it. I grew up with a Mom who was, and still is, the picture perfect epitome of perfection. (I love alliteration! HA!) Her hair is always perfect; her nails are always painted, and she’s always thin. She never goes out of the house without her makeup and jewelry on—even to work in the yard or exercise. It took me a long time to realize that I did not have to look and act exactly like she did. In my mind “natural” was not pretty. Yes, I have always known that true loveliness comes from within but the rest of the world seems to prize the outside significantly more so and I was always concerned with what others thought of me.

Growing up the women I idolized were not what you would call natural. You see I love old movies. A few of my favorites are: Rear Window with Grace Kelly and Jimmy Stewart; Charade, Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant; To Catch A Thief, Grace Kelly and Cary Grant; North By Northwest, Eva Marie Saint and Cary Grant; and Bringing Up Baby Katherine Hepburn and Carey Grant. Do you see a pattern here? Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. Grant was handsome and dashing with his dark hair and eyes—so mysterious. He was so sophisticated and debonair you just knew that whatever problem came up, he could handle it. I always wanted to be the girl that caught him. I wanted to be Grace Kelly. She was so amazingly beautiful and always polished and made up from head to toe. She never had a hair out of place and her lipstick was never smudged. If I had to pick one word to describe her it would be liquid. She flowed so smoothly and was calmly serene. In my mind, she was what was “beautiful” and I wanted to be just like her.

Wanting to be Grace Kelly, somehow I wound up more like Lucille Ball. No, I don’t have red hair. It’s blonde like Kelly’s and I have blue eyes like she did too but the similarity ends there. I got the clumsiness of Lucy. I also inherited her ability to be a living example of Murphy’s law. No matter how much I plan, something always goes wrong but at least I always end up with interesting memories.

If I had to pick one word to describe me it would be dichotomous. I am always contradicting myself. I am half-bohemian, half-preppy. I am half-granola, half-glamour. Wait, that’s four halves, but you get the idea. I like to get all dressed up, go to trendy restaurants and shops. I like to put on my hiking boots and enjoy the great outdoors. I like the lights of the big city, the atmosphere of culture when going to the symphony or a play. I like to lie on a blanket at night, in the middle of nowhere, stare up at the stars for hours and breathe in the clean, soft night air while listening to the symphony of the crickets. I like the conveniences of city. I like the quiet of a small town. I like the luxuriousness of silk and the intoxicating smell of a spicy perfume. I like how soft a pair of jeans can feel after they’ve been washed a hundred times and the smell of freshly cut grass mixed with wild onions in the middle of the summertime. See, dichotomy.

One nice thing about getting a little age on you is you realize you don’t have to have all the answers. I am not nearly as concerned with how others perceive me as I was, say, ten years ago. I am more comfortable in my own skin. So now I am altering my view and in the eye of this beholder kakhi shorts, a t-shirt, Birkenstocks and no makeup can be just as lovely as the pale yellow silk dress, matching jacket, adorable strappy, wedge-heeled sandals and the perfect shade of lipstick.
I just made the last payment on my car! Yippppiiieeeeeee!!!!! Wooo Hooo! The little Civic is mine, all mine. I am celebrating with Sushi for lunch!

Friday, July 26, 2002

Growing Pains

I remember when I was about 13 years old I woke up in the middle of the night with terrible cramping in my legs. My calf muscles were in spasm and my legs hurt so badly I thought I was going to die. I was certain I had developed some strange disease that would paralyze me and I would forever be confined to my bed—or worse yet I had some form of cancer that would leave me with just a few months to live (just a tad melodramatic). I cried out for help and my Mom came to the rescue. She assured me that I was simply experiencing “growing pains.”

Now, I am thirty and pondering why it is pain is always associated with growth? Why does it have to hurt to grow? I want to be a better person; I want to “think outside the box” so-to-speak. I want to be a lifelong learner –one who never sees a day pass without at least gleaning some tidbit of fascinating information. On the other hand, not being a masochist, I don’t want to experience any more pain than absolutely necessary. As of yet, however, I have not been able to determine how to avoid it. Do you think the pain/growth cycle could be the reason you see people become stagnant and so very set in their ways? Do we turn inward to avoid the pain of growth?

In the last three years I have done a lot of growing; experienced a lot of joy but also a lot pain. I left the comfort of familiarity to move halfway across the country to begin a new job. I was excited at the prospect of working with a good friend again and I was really ready for a change. Well, at least I thought I was ready.

I moved from a rather large metropolitan area (read about 5 million) to a place I affectionately, and appropriately, call “teenie weenie tiny town.” The town was so small it did not even have a Wal-Mart and they rolled up the sidewalks at 5 p.m. Long-story-short, the guy I went to work with left 4 months after I got there, three months after that my boss called me in to say “we know you were hired to do this but in actuality we need you to do this instead.” In other words, you job about 180 degrees opposite of what you were hired to. Rather than disrupt my life again with another move I decided to stick-it-out and try to make it work. BIG MISTAKE! I ended up leaving after 10 months more miserable than I had ever been in my life. Now I had no job, no place to live, and absolutely no self-esteem. My one lifeline through the whole experience was my fiancé, now husband. He believed in me when I did not believe in myself.

Somehow through the haze of absolute disbelief at my circumstances, I found a place to live, moved to the Queen City and after a few despondent, and extremely financially tight months, found another job (the one I currently have). I was naïve. I was blind to a lot of “politics.” I believed, unabashedly, in the “honesty” of others. I was wrong. I led a very sheltered life and I also gave everyone the benefit of the doubt and tried to find the good in people. I have since discovered not everyone has good in them; I have become quite the cynic but I am still here.

All this brings to mind the trite phrase “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” What does it mean? It seems, to me, to fall on the Darwinist side of things. What if an experience does kill someone? Does that mean they were too weak? Maybe it just means that people come in all different varieties –some are sturdier than others are. Gold is more rare and precious than steel but steel is more sturdy, able to withstand great pressure. Does that diminish the existence of either? No, it simply means that you use gold ornamentally and steel fundamentally –both are necessary components to life.

Sometimes I look back over that experience and wonder why it had to happen. My beliefs were called into question during my struggles and I don’t know that I have any more concrete answers then I did at the time. Am I a better person for having experienced that pain? Does the pain of growth necessarily equate to becoming a better person or does it simply mean I am a different person than I was before. I don’t know.

Let’s just say I have grown. It was painful

Thanks to Lance Riley’s archived blogs ( for the inspiration.

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

My Job

Glass Half-Empty - this is the least fulfilling job I have ever had.

Glass Half-Full - this is the least stressful job I have ever had.

I guess, just like everything else in life, it's a trade-off!

So, not much to post today. My cold seems to be getting the better of me despite investing half of my paycheck in NyQuill, Sudafed, Actifed, Halls, Tylanol, Advil, Puffs Plus with Lotion, and et cetera. I think I need more sleep.

Ohh..... just got a call..... the "on our side" insurance agency has finally cut a check for the now deceased Explorer. Hubby is going to get it so he can put a downpayment on a new vehicle. Wooo Hoo..... it just took 3 freakin' months to settle this thing!

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Glass Half-Empty

I have a cold –one of the absolute worst colds you can have – a summer cold. My head feels like a pressure cooker, my eyes are watery, my throat aches, my nose itches and when I sneeze I feel as if the top of my head were going to blow off. I only want to eat popsicles and ice cream because they are the only things that feel good on my throat.

Glass Half-Full

The upside to this is that I can now, with absolute confidence, procure a job as Girl Number 9 on the Love Lines. My voice is nice and husky with a little bit of a gravely sound to it. “Why don’t cha come up and see me sometime” – wink!
You can’t go back

I don’t know when I first realized the solitary truth “you can never go home again.” Nor do I know when I realized the difference between what home actually is and what it necessarily represents. I only know that the impetus my most recent encounter with that pull at the bottom of your heart, the yearning for lost innocence, was The Karate Kid.

It was late in the evening after I had arrived home from seeing an amazing representation of French cinematography and being the southerner that I am, I settled down with a tall glass of iced tea and turned on the television. I was flipping through channels when I happened upon the beginnings of The Karate Kid. Immediately I was whisked away to my childhood. I remember sitting in a theater in Fort Walton Beach, Florida with my family. I was 12 years old. Life was pretty simple. There was right and there was wrong. There was black and there was white. My family loved me and I was secure.

While watching this movie I began to grieve not only for the loss of innocence that comes with age but for the loss of innocence in this new millennium. Ralph Maccio moves from New Jersey to California and on his first day in town is invited to a beach party. While playing soccer he sees Elizabeth Shue. He kicks the soccer ball over to her and she throws it back then gets up and walks with her friends into the water. Nothing odd about this scene when viewed through 1984 glasses, big brother not withstanding. Elizabeth is wearing a demure one-piece bathing suit, she is somewhat pale, and wearing little make-up. The intent is to see youth. Today however we see very little of this freshness. Today we see dark tans, skimpy thong bikinis, and girls made up to be sexy and alluring. It saddens me.

Throughout the movie their relationship progresses in the typical boy sees girl-of-his-dreams, boy loses girl, boy chases after a dream with hero-like qualities and intent to get girl back. There is a very romantic yet utterly chaste kiss on his birthday and once again you see young love. There was no removing of clothes, no erotic lustfully hot sex. It was all so simple. It made me wonder when we turned the corner.

I am not saying that I think everything in the world today can be blamed on sex. That’s not my point. What I am mourning is a time when children were really just innocent little beings without the “big, bad, adult world –with all of its innuendo, double entendre, and financial woes –assaulting them at every turn. When do kids have a chance to be kids?

There is only one time in your life when you can be free and unencumbered. Only one time when you can ride through the neighborhood on your bike, pull up to the house on the corner, drop the kick-stand and go jump in the puddle of mud left by the afternoon rain. One time when you can run around with a dirty t-shirt, cut-off shorts, no shoes, and catch fireflies in the late dusk of the summer evening. You have not a care in the world. You don’t know what political unrest is. You don’t know what terrorism means; you don’t care that the price of gasoline added to a 25 mile one-way commute each day is going to really take a chunk out of your paycheck. Your biggest concern is whether or not the ice-cream truck is going to drive by while you are supposed to be taking a nap.

I long for a time when getting caught in the rain did not automatically make me think of the money I just spent on dry-cleaning my clothes and how I might ruin my new leather strappy sandals. A time when homemade peach ice cream and Oreo’s was not only a nutritious dinner but also not going to add another inch to my already too curvy hips. A time when my first thought upon getting out of bed was how far I could ride my bike, how many crickets I could catch, or how I couldn’t wait to get to the beach and jump the waves. Someone else had packed my suitcase. Someone else paid my bills, someone else did my laundry, someone else cooked my meals, someone else paid for my clothes, books, toys, et cetera, and et cetera.

I could go on and on.You see, my childhood was great. I got to do all those things and more. I guess, even in my 30th year, a part of me wants to be 10 again -- if only for a week.

Friday, July 19, 2002

Hi, It's me again. I think I am going to lunch. The sound of the keyboard is giving me a headache!

Thursday, July 18, 2002

What do you do when things don’t turn out as you expected? I have noticed in my life, within the last year or so, that some things just are not what I thought they would be. I guess to be on par for the rest of life some things are better and some are worse.

I am kind of Jill-Come-Lately kind of gal. I am getting a VERY late start in life for a LOT of things. I really did not start drinking with any regularity until after I got married – at 29. I got drunk for the first time on my honeymoon thanks to two strawberry margaritas, one double shot of bourbon and half a bottle of arbor mist and practically a whole bottle of NyQuil!! HA!

Hubby drove and I laid the seat back, stuck my feet out the moon roof, and sang my addresses and telephone numbers to the tune of “Three Blind Mice” It was quite a site to behold. I have very little memory of it too! The amazing thing, and I consider this to be rather ironic, is that I am (thus far) impervious to a hang-over. Now being that my tolerance for alcohol is so low, it doesn’t take much to get me drunk.

Where I find the irony is this. I have migraines -- BAD MIGRAINES and they always cause me to throw up. They started in my mid 20s. I have been getting regular headaches (read daily) since I was 15-years old. They are painful but I have learned to put up with them. When the Migraines hit they hit with a force that so knocked me for a loop I always wound up in the emergency room for a Demerol/phenegren/compazine cocktail! Boy, those are fun.

My very first migraine had me on throwing up on the intake desk at the ER, then lying on the nasty, cold, dirty, germ-infested floor of the ER because I could not sit up. Besides the floor was cold and I was so damn hot I felt as if Lucifer had brought hell up and placed it in my head.

I fee like it’s the universe evening things out that I don’t get a hang-over. I had to endure all that massive headache, eyes sensitive to light, ears sensitive to anything loud, generally feeling like I had been run over by a Mack truck without ever getting the ‘high” of being drunk the night before. So, now I get drunk and wake up feeling just right as rain.

By the way, did I mention that I think Margaritas should be their own food group? (big smile!)
7/18/02 9:30 am

Gotta love happy hour!

Went to a bar with part of my co-workers a couple of nights ago. 4 of the 7 of them have birthdays in July and we went to celebrate. When it was time to go I picked up the tab and whipped out the old credit card. That's when I looked down at my bill and got the biggest kick out of it! My drink, margarita, was listed as a "Happy Tequila." Happy is definitely how I feel when I imbibe with Senor Jose. Hubby will love it too! He loves Tequila especially Happy Tequila! I think that work flows so much better when you are able to socialize outside of the office and get to know one another better. Well… that’s my opinion anyway.

M, one of my co-workers, ended up lamenting about the current situation of his love life or rather lack thereof. He is casually seeing this girl/woman who is 2 years his Sr. He wants to take it to the next level of “boyfriend” status. She said she is doesn’t want to go there but physically she’s attracted to him and apparently she acts on that too. We told him that if she is acting physically but not there “emotionally” she was probably commitment-a-phobic. Keep pursuing, she may eventually turn around. He is an attractive guy with a great sense of humor and wit. M has a lot of potential if he would just cut the Keanu Reeves act.

7/16/02 1:49 pm

Well, just got some bad news about Hubby’s truck. Apparently after all the work they have put in on it they have only now discovered that the engine block is cracked. Now, to a non-car person, such as myself, that doesn’t mean much. What does translate quite well, however, is that the crack means the engine must be replaced, not repaired, to the tune of say….. $8,000, OUCH! Seems like in the Suburban v. Explorer, the Suburban wins Round 2. Let’s see how “on our side” the insurance company is now. They gave the ole’ “thumbs up” to the initial repairs, even though we told them there was more damage than meets the eye, and they will have to pay for them to be done even if they decide to total out the vehicle. We will just have to see if this works.

7/16/02 12:02 pm

Google is about the greatest search engine in the entire world. You type something in and Voila… bolded and highlighted is the word you were looking for right in the descriptions of the website. So, as I occasionally do, I surfed for some people I once knew in a former life. I found them. Now, I am awash with old memories.

It’s strange how your life can be so different from the life you lead just 3 years ago that it all seems as if it were a dream. My life now is SO VERY unrelated to the life I led back in the land of Jalapenos and Tortillas. Now I live in the land of Sweet Tea and Deep Fried EVERYTHING! I miss the tortillas. Sweet Tea is by far a much prettier place. I cannot even begin to tell you how lush and green everything is here. Sweet Tea has seasons but I do miss the amazing sunsets of Tortillaville. Well, enough of comparing the merits of Sweet Tea to Tortillaville.

These are two people, M and D, whom I considered friends. The friendships were not incredibly deep as we did not spend a lot of time together but still we talked on the phone and hung on occasion. When I left Tortillaville something happened. I don’t know what, but something happened. Whenever I tried to contact M, I got no response. I sent a few emails – no reply. Then I left a few messages – no callback. I thought this to be odd. In fact, I did not understand it at all. Then I tried to contact D through email – same thing – no response. I don’t get it. What the hell did I do that was so bad you had to refuse all contact with me? At least let me know what offense I committed. Honestly though, whatever it is; I am truly sorry.

I wonder if it has to do with my former employer GDU, or Goda Davida University (wink, wink). That is how we met. M worked on the computers at the GDU and, long story short, my boss, D-Head, (Really, his name begins with a D ;-)) made some decisions about the office Macs without talking to me. In fact, he never talked to me about ANY DAMN THING that concerned me. I ended up backtracking so much crap because he felt like making decisions. Anyway.... he decided we needed a “professional” to come in and fix everything for the network.

The “professional” charged at LEAST twice as much and took twice as long. I had worked very hard to build up the working relationship with GDU and M and even D who had worked for us a couple of times through M, when D-Head came in he ruined everything. I talked to M about it and assured him that I had absolutely nothing to do with the decision. He said he was OK with it but now I wonder if M was really more upset than he let on.

I really miss M and D and have tried to keep up with them through the web. They are awesome individuals -- more deep than a lot of people I know who claim to be wells. So, what’s a girl to do?

July 8 10:32 am

Ok, what do I do? What is happening to me? Why now? I mean…… everybody else went through this when they were like 15 or 18 or 20 -- for godsakes at least in college or shortly thereafter. I mean…. Here I am….. 30 and just discovering a lot of things most other people discover very early on in life. I am deeply lamenting the passing of my 30th year. I don’t get it. I feel like I am living in a dream. What’s real?

My indecision is a lot like hopscotch. I throw the rock…. I then jump two, one, two, one, one, two. Then I turn around and do it all again. I cover the same terrain again and over again. My life boils down to two, one, two, one, one, two turn around and two, one, one, two, one, two. 30 years in 17 hops.

See, it looks like I am making a decision or two by throwing the rock but the thing is…. I look around and it seems like everyone else gets to move on to a new game….. something more like two, one, one, three, two, one, one, two, three, two, one. Everyone else seems to at least rotate. I’m still stuck with the original. What do I do? I have been through a much smaller version of this before. I was 24 or 25 at the time. Now, I am going through it again. UGGHHH!!!! I had better insurance at the time. I could go to a therapist 24 times a year. Not 5. I also had Wellburtrin and Xanex.

Ok, gotta question for you.... marriage. What the hell is that conundrum? Not that I don’t love… love… love my husband. It’s just sooooo damn hard! I had no idea how very selfish I was until I got married. No way in hell am I ready for a kid!