Dixie Peach: March 2006

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Shuffled, Not Stirred Edition

C''s easy! Turn on your favorite music maker, set to shuffle, say the first ten it gives up. Olives are strictly optional but a nice twist of lemon adds a refreshing touch.
  1. Alibi - David Gray
  2. Let's Stay Together - Al Green
  3. Mama Told Me Not To Come - Tom Jones
  4. The Willow Garden - Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
  5. Champagne Supernova - Oasis
  6. Back Home Again - Blackmore's Night
  7. Wig-Wam Bam - The Donnas
  8. American Girl - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
  9. Rad Gumbo - Little Feat
  10. Ashamed of Myself - Pursuit of Happiness
Wig-Wam Bam is evidently stalking me - last week Sweet, this week The Donnas.

And wrapping up the work week...

~ Dear City of Magdeburg. I understand that there is a new "Keep Magdeburg Clean" campaign going on and that this campaign will be especially important when World Cup visitors begin arriving but might I suggest that sweeping the main road in the city at 11:15 on a Friday morning is an incredibly stupid idea?

~ My doctor's office called me Wednesday to say that the doctor forgot to take my quarterly H1Ac blood test the last time I saw her and she had to have the test in to the insurance company by the 31st. I came in to her office quite early yesterday so she could get the blood and have it go out at the 9am lab run. Today she called to ask me if I was sick - a cold, sinus infection, repiratory funk, whatever because I have an elevated white blood cell count and she needs me to come back in Monday to give more blood to see if the lab just made an error or if I have some undiagnosed infection or something even more sinister going on. It's nothing more sinister, don't you think? I mean if she thought the white cell count was so high that it was something sinister, she'd have made me come in today, right?

I'm trying to avoid giving the panic button a workout this weekend.

~ They cleaned, filled and turned on the fountains outside of my apartment building. That means spring has officially arrived. It also means the sound of all that running water makes me have to pee a lot.

~ Knitting lace isn't so bad. Knitting lace while trying to watch the second season of the Gilmore Girls on DVD isn't bad either but gives hellish results.

Hope your weekend is the grooviest.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Thursday Kinder Egg Blogging

'Cause who doesn't love to see the plastic junk I put together?

As always, roll your cursor over the image to see it change.

Drumming mouse - move his tail and he bangs on his drums all day. How clever of him to make good use of bottle caps and spoons! Rock on, Dude!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


The time I spend washing my hair is a time when I do some of my best thinking. It's when I make plans or set goals or consider my opinion on various topics. It's also a time when I will randomly think back to things from my past and I end up wondering why they crossed my mind.

Today during my shampoo and deep conditioning I thought about being in the fourth grade. In my elementary school ninety-odd kids would be divided among three teachers who worked as a team and we'd have one of the three teachers for various subjects. I had the misfortune to have as my fourth grade team teachers three of the biggest bitches I've ever encountered.

It wasn't just that they were abrupt and curt and rarely friendly. It wasn't just that the one who taught me math told me that I was a complete failure at it and was hopeless to teach. It wasn't the fact that they did things like keep kids in from going out at recess if they deemed their jackets or sweaters to not living up to their idea of proper outerwear even when they were perfectly fine articles of clothing. The thing that has stuck in my craw for the past thirty-four years is how they treated us like their personal servants.

About a third of the way into the school year these three got the idea that they were highly allergic to dust, chalk dust in particular. Being around an excess of dust made them terribly sick and they petitioned the principal to have the janitor clean the three classrooms extra well and extra often. I'm sure once the prinicipal stopped laughing hysterically he tactfully explained to them that there was one janitor for the whole school and it was all he could do to sweep and mop the hallways and classrooms, clean the rest rooms and empty the trash.

Not to be deterred in their quest for a chalk dust free working environment they evidently put their heads together and thought "Hey! Who needs an old man to clean our classrooms when we have ninety healthy ten-year-olds to do it!".

So that's what we did. Once a week, sometimes twice, lessons were stopped, cans of Comet and stacks of paper towels were handed out and we cleaned the classroom for a couple of hours. Books were removed from shelves and they were thoroughly washed and rinsed and dried. Desks were emptied and washed inside and out. Blackboards and chalk troughs were scrubbed. Window frames were washed. Window blinds were washed. Little kids who should have been learning about long division and state capitals were on their hands and knees washing the floor with cleanser and paper towels.

And God forbid anyone refused to clean. You'd be told that you were bad and uncaring that the dust made the teachers sick. You were disobedient and you'd be cooling your heels indoors copying a page from the dictionary while the rest of the kids enjoyed recess. I remember the principal finding out about our cleaning chores but that fat bastard didn't stop it. I assume he figured that if none of our parents said anything it was okay. It shut up the three teachers and that's all he wanted.

That's what gets me. That's what I can't to this day figure out. I can't believe none of us - not one student - told our parents about this. None of us liked this - learning about the solar system was much better than getting on your hands and knees and stinking of Comet - but we didn't do anything about it. Somehow those three women got ninety kids so cowed that they'd scrub and not say a word about it at home.

I wonder even now what it was about me that made me not say anything to my mother about this. I knew even then that if I went home and told my mother that at least two hours of class time each week was devoted to all of us scrubbing down three classroom that she would have been down to the principal's office breathing fire. My mother would have seen those three teachers in hell before she'd let her child lose time learning so that she could wash down bookcases. I could have had the whole thing stopped in an instant and yet I didn't.

All I can figure is that I must have been so afraid of stepping out of line. Of not conforming. Of rocking the boat. I didn't want to be the one who had the crazy mother kicking ass over the situation so I kept quiet. I followed the rules. Color within the lines. Color within the lines. Color within the lines.

Sweet Jesus, I must have been crazy.

I think about this now and I'm still angry over it. I'm angry with those idiot teachers who made us lose valuable time for their own benefit. I'm angry that none of us rebelled. And I'm really angry that I chose conformity over what I knew was really right. I had the right to be taught all day every day by those teachers and I gave up that right so that I wouldn't stand out and be the potential subject of ridicule.

Many years later - I believe I was in college - I told my mother about those teachers making us clean the classrooms. I did it in a ha-ha-isn't-this-a-wacky-story sort of way. My mother didn't find it so wacky. Even though ten years had passed my mother was livid. She couldn't believe that those teachers made us clean their classrooms for them and she really couldn't believe that I hadn't told her when it was all going on. She kept saying "Why didn't you tell me? I'd have put a stop to that right away! Why didn't you tell me?" and all I could reply was "I don't know. I don't know. I don't know.".

I still don't know. Maybe I never will.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Cheesy - Oz style

Many thanks to y'all for the "feel better!" wishes. I'm only about half as distressed as yesterday so I'm thinking that whatever it was is on its last legs. Good thing too as I had to go down to the post office to chase down a letter that the postman had attempted to deliver yesterday when I was in no state to get to the door on time.

It didn't turn out to be a letter at all but instead was a padded envelope from one of B's cousins in Australia. One of B's dad's brothers moved to Australia back in the mid-50s and they never looked back. B's cousins were still kids/teenagers when they arrived and they now speak English with an Australian accent and a tinge of German. They still speak German but it's quite rusty and I've finally reached the point where my German is better than theirs. We're quite close to one of his cousins, Peter, and one of Peter's sons, Wayne, is the one who sent the envelope. It's neither of our birthdays and there's not been any big event in either family lately so we were very curious what would be in the envelope.

Anyone who knows me well knows I'm a trinket fiend. Little plastic toys and fridge magnets and geegaws of any sort catch my attention. I'm in heaven in a tacky souvenir shop. And that's what was in the envelope - a sampling of tacky souvenirs from Australia. I was practically swooning as I unwrapped each item.

Image hosting by Photobucket

This was first - a stuffed kangaroo (complete with joey!) wearing one of those goofy Outback hats with the little cork bobbles used to keep the flies away. I have no idea whether Australians actually wear these hats or if they're just a charming cliche but we have some ourselves. When Peter and his wife came to visit Germany it was a particularly hot summer and the wasps and bees were frightful. Peter called home and had the kids send some of those hats so they could bear the onslaught of winged insects and we still have them. Parties at our home sometimes degenerate to the guests being in such a state of drunkeness that they demade we break out the hats just so they can try them on.

Image hosting by Photobucket

You can't have a true collection of souvenirs without keyrings. And they've been pressed into use already. I'm not passing up the chance to use a keyring that says "Good luck, mate!" on it.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Stickers! And magnets! I'm all over those magnets. One even has a thermometer. Useful and cheesy at the same time! B says he wants one of the Australian flag stickers on his wheelchair. Who am I to deny him?

Image hosting by Photobucket

The ultimate in cheesy. The ultimate in tacky. My favorite thing in the package. A kangaroo pen. And not just any kangaroo pen, my friends.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Push the levers on the back and it boxes! I've had my play time with it severly curtailed. B said if I don't leave it alone I'm going to break it. Spoil sport.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Me thinks these two were bound up together too long or someone's trying to jack that hat.

Good manners and my love of what's cheesy demands that I reciprocate and send Wayne and his family their own package of German souvenirs. Any excuse for me to invade a souvenir shop.

Monday, March 27, 2006

White flag

I don't know what I've eaten in the last 24-48 hours that has relegated my digestive system to this exqusite state of distress but I wish it would identify itself so that we may have a negotiated peace between us. I shall promise not to eat it again and it shall promise to cease and desist its reign of terror.

Paris, 1789 didn't see as much turmoil as my innards have today.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Death by meme

I'm not much in to talking about myself right now - mostly because what there is to say is either not very interesting or is stuff that is currently avoiding being put into words - so let's kill a Sunday evening with a little meme fun.

Swiped from Belinda. Not this Belinda, but this one. Read 'em both - they're terrific ladies and more than amusing!

List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they are any good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying now. Post these instructions in your blog along with your seven songs. Then tag seven other people to see what they’re listening to.
  1. Mayor of Simpleton - XTC I've recently rediscovered my Oranges & Lemons CD and this is my favorite track from it. I remember the first time I heard the song - I was driving home from work and it came on the radio and I was so crazy about it that I took the next exit to the mall, walked into the record store and walked out with the cassette. Played it until it finally broke. I just love this song's simple declaration of love.
  2. All I Want Is You - U2 It's more than just my very favorite U2 song. It's got a melancholy sound that seems to be resonating with me lately. I've been listening to it each night before I go to sleep.
  3. Cliffs of Dover - Eric Johnson My hot guitar fix. I'm crazy for the drums on it too.
  4. Little Willy - Sweet I heard it by chance on TV and it got stuck in my head. It also happens to be some of the ear candy crap I have on Bixente the iPod so I'm responsible for it staying stuck in my head. Dopey lyrics but a nice bass line and good drums. More cowbell!
  5. I Want To Know - The Mavericks I'm always a sucker for Raul Malo's voice and play a lot of Mavericks anyway but this song is my current Maverick obsession and I dance around the apartment listening to it, wildly whipping around my hair. I was thinking that if I were ever on American Idol, this would be a song I'd want to sing.
  6. Blitzkrieg Bop - The Ramones Makes me feel fourteen again. The good part of fourteen, that is.
  7. Tuxedo Junction - Glenn Miller Orchestra I've been obsessing over this tune for nearly two months now and I'm not sick of it yet.
I won't tag but I'd love to see what y'all are currently digging on. Especially you, Sari.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Glam Rock Edition

You have to love any music genre that incorporates eye shadow, platform boots and exceedingly tight trousers into one package.
  1. Ballroom Blitz - Sweet
  2. Get It On (Bang A Gong) - T. Rex
  3. Life on Mars? - David Bowie
  4. Poison - Alice Cooper
  5. Jeepster - T. Rex
  6. Far Far Away - Slade
  7. Wig Wam Bam - Sweet
  8. Detroit Rock City - KISS
  9. Rock n Roll, Part II - Gary Glitter
  10. New York Groove - Hello
Yikes! Who let the pervert in here?

On to other things while I change out of my leather jumpsuit. And these platform boots are murder on my arches.

Hmmm...come to think of it there are no other things to report. Having the car washed was the high point of the week, aside from trying two different yarns to knit Cozy and hating both of them. I'm now on my third try and so far this yarn is working well. Now I have to figure out what to do with nine skeins of 50% silk, 50% rayon yarn. The second batch of yarn I tried may just go into the trash as it actually gives me the chills to knit with it - it's so slippery and limp, rather like knitting with wet, overcooked spaghetti. someone help me sweep up all this glitter. Looks like a pixie exploded in here.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

100 More Things

It's been about a year since I wrote the first 100 things about me so let's see if I can come up with 100 more.
  1. I can't keep my eyes open under water for more than a few fleeting moments.
  2. From the time a plane takes off until it reaches cruising altitude, I'm screaming inside.
  3. I think Bugs Bunny cartoons from the 40s and 50s are the best. Any Warner Brothers cartoon actually.
  4. I don't think I'd mind working in a funeral home but I wouldn't want to see anyone unprepared and unboxed.
  5. I wish I still had my high school letter jacket.
  6. Angel food cake, to me, tastes like baked nothing.
  7. In the past 30 years I've been through probably 25 hair dryers.
  8. You'd think I'd learn to clean the lint out of them before they burn up.
  9. I can change the oil in a car and change a flat tire but I don't know how to change wiper blades.
  10. I wash my face in Dove soap because the smell reminds me of my Aunt Cora.
  11. I learned the hard way to not eat an entire box of frozen spinach by yourself at a sitting.
  12. The only stomach ache lesson even worse than the spinach incident was the too-many-raw-peanuts-at-once fiasco.
  13. I didn't listen when Daddy warned me.
  14. The kid that lived next door to my family in Memphis was named Tony. All the kids in the neighborhood called him Booger.
  15. I have a feeling that Booger is now in prison.
  16. Bet the others in prison call him Booger too.
  17. My favorite dress when I was in the 5th grade was from the Partridge Family fashion collection.
  18. There was a little red partridge on the collar and for the longest time I thought it was a tamborine.
  19. I've taken two polygraph tests.
  20. I haven't written a check since 1998.
  21. I was a kick-ass Greek dodgeball player when I was 11 years old. Partridge Family dress and all.
  22. I call the potato soup my mother-in-law makes "vomit soup".
  23. It tastes good but it looks like vomit.
  24. Boy does it piss off my husband when I call it that while he's eating it.
  25. I'm one of the few people my sister trusts to drive her cars.
  26. I've never been in a car accident as a driver.
  27. I am right now furiously knocking on wood.
  28. I really dislike socks and avoid wearing them whenever possible.
  29. The first album I ever bought was Hunky Dory by David Bowie.
  30. My ability to do even the most simple math is painfully lacking.
  31. I love being around or in water. I could happily live on a houseboat.
  32. I like to watch movies in French even though I don't speak any French.
  33. Within fifteen minutes of meeting my former sister-in-law she wanted me to look at her naked breasts to see if I liked her boob job.
  34. She waited only two more minutes before inviting me to feel them.
  35. I declined. They looked like concrete anyway.
  36. My cousin Wanda made the best chocolate pie I ever had.
  37. The last gift my father gave me before he died was a pair of black leather gloves lined with cashmere.
  38. I still wear them every winter - I've had them since 1991.
  39. My hair is now the longest it's been since 1984.
  40. I had a cousin who would wash her hair in dishwashing liquid and then put fabric softener on as a cream rinse.
  41. I used to look forward September for the new season of Saturday morning cartoons.
  42. My oldest brother's birthday is the day before mine.
  43. My sister's birthday is the day after mine.
  44. None of us were planned.
  45. Evidently my parents really dug April.
  46. I love museums and now wish I had worked in one.
  47. I have doubts that Bruno Richard Hauptmann kidnapped the Lindburgh baby.
  48. I wish I could play the banjo.
  49. Or the mandolin.
  50. I am fascinated by miniatures and collect them.
  51. True crime stories scare me but I am powerless to stop reading them.
  52. I don't take criticism terribly well but I'm better than I used to be.
  53. Same with compliments.
  54. I become very self conscious when having my photograph taken.
  55. I hated my Jeep Wrangler and was sorry my ex-husband talked me into it.
  56. But I liked waving at other Wrangler drivers.
  57. I now realize I had the same feeling buying the Jeep as I did when I married my ex-husband.
  58. I hated my handwriting and would practice making it look neat and pretty.
  59. I never liked how I made capital Ls and it was rather a relief to get married and no longer have to write one in my last name.
  60. Disappointment set in when I got remarried and having my new last name start with a G. I don't like how I make Gs either.
  61. I love that sick, stomach dropping feeling you get on a really high Ferris wheel.
  62. My father is buried in the same cemetary with his parents and his great grandparents.
  63. I haven't used a clothes dryer in nearly four years.
  64. In high school my friends and I discussed for hours whether Klaatu was really the Beatles.
  65. We also poured over "Paul is dead" evidence.
  66. Some of the best dishes I cook are dishes I won't eat.
  67. My mother used to make all my Halloween costumes.
  68. When I was five years old I was a Greek goddesss for Halloween.
  69. I kept telling people I was a "grape goddess".
  70. I virtually never answer our telephone myself.
  71. I like ironing but avoid vacuuming until I no longer have a choice.
  72. I've never ridden a horse aside from one at a pony ride.
  73. I often eat slices of chilled lemon.
  74. I am truly pathetic at bowling. I'm too concerned with potentially tearing off my thumbnail.
  75. I once went nearly five years without ever wearing jeans.
  76. I love TicTacs and eat them like...well...TicTacs.
  77. I follow the same routine most days, not out of compulsion but out of lack of imagination and the need to vary it.
  78. My Kindergarten teacher's name was Miss Wickie. I thought she was gorgeous and wanted to look just like her.
  79. I was very disappointed to find out she wouldn't be my teacher every year.
  80. My sister and my mother both taught me how to drive a car with a manual transmission. Neither one of them ever yelled at me even once.
  81. My grandfather's pet name for my grandmother was "Buttercup". Every time he called her that I thought of a cow.
  82. My grandmother in no way resembled a cow.
  83. I have no idea how many first cousins I have on my father's side of the family. Most are old enough to be my parent.
  84. Tomato sandwiches are a big reason I look forward to summer.
  85. I don't fear death, just the process of getting there.
  86. Each night I have busy dreams but often don't remember more than a few fleeting details.
  87. When I saw a picture of my husband from when he was seventeen years old I knew I had to marry him. He looked like a 70s rock star.
  88. I still dig that 70s rock star look.
  89. All of my friends are gorgeous looking. Every single one of them.
  90. I don't like sleep in pitch blackness and like a little ambient light from the streetlamps.
  91. The intensity of the experience of seeing bands live or seeing musicals live is enough to make me nearly lose my breath.
  92. I never, ever leave my apartment without saying "Bye. Love you.". Ever. I will even whisper it to myself when I leave if my husband happens to be asleep.
  93. With the exception of my sister, I am no longer close with anyone whose wedding I was in as a bridesmaid.
  94. I wonder what they think of when they see me in their wedding photos.
  95. I am very good friends with my husband's first girlfriend. She's his oldest friend.
  96. Electric drills freak me out and I fear the bit breaking off and flying into my head.
  97. I am amazingly good at keeping secrets.
  98. Rain on the roof is, to me, one of the most restful sounds.
  99. I have to shake the milk carton before pouring from it.
  100. As I fall asleep each night I imagine angels on my pillow.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Good day

Today was indeed a new day and as I suspected it was better than yesterday. I'd started out on the wrong foot yesterday and it just kept going downhill.

Example of downhill day: I had my and B's suppers on our plates and had just shook some pepper onto my mashed potatoes. As I was switching the pepper shaker to my left hand so I could set it on the counter the top came off and the entire contents of the pepper shaker came out - on B's dinner plate.

But since I'm a believer that what you send out into the world is what returns to you, I started this day trying to think of only good things and so today we're going to concentrate on what's good, what makes me happy and stuff I dig the mostest.

~ Raul Malo. Sweet Jesus, I love that man's voice. Do you think his wife makes him sing to her all the time? Is he even married? Is it possible that I could persuade him to marry me?

~ I was thinking today back to when I was a little kid how I liked to sit in the car to read. Even though I had my own bedroom, our house was never quiet. Chaos and bedlam would be better words to describe our household. I remember that feeling of laying on the warm vinyl seats, feet sticking out of the window, and feeling the breeze come through the windows and across my skin as I read about Laura in her little town on the prairie or Stuart Little on his adventure to find his sparrow sweetheart or about how a spider with the help of a rat could save a pig. Sometimes if I promised not to leave it on too long my mother would give me the car keys so I could play the radio. Cheesy pop music on AM radio and books and a little private time.

~ I love my Aunt Cora. Completely adore her. She always made me feel like I was the most important thing in the world. She still does.

~ Thunder and fireworks. The loudness of them startles me and I hate that but the excitement of both is irresistable to me. There's something about things that scare and fascinate me at the same time that I love.

~ My friend, Preacher Beege, said this not too long ago on her blog:

Give God a chance to reach you in spite of it all. Because he will. He's wildcrazy in love with you, and he won't let anything (not even the church) keep him from getting to you.

I love that so much. I love it so much I get tears in my eyes when I read it. I love that I'm friends with someone so smart and so compassionate and so amazing that she could say something that important in such a great way.

~ Linden trees. I love how they smell when they bloom. I could get high from them.

~ Here's the advantage of having a husband that can't run away from you: I like to hold B down and blow on his neck until it tickles and he gasps for breath and makes that sort of silent scream. It's not fair but I love his face when I look up at him - half laughing, half panic.

~ My sister and I could watch The Andy Griffith Show until our eyes drop from their sockets.


Feeling better already.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Bad day


Better tomorrow though.

Sunday, March 19, 2006


I watched the entire first season of Lost in two days. Who said I'm not motivated and goal oriented?

Friday, March 17, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Hurling o' the Green Edition

First a shuffle, then a story.

Let's shuffle my favorite man from Belfast: Van Morrison.
  1. Jackie Wilson Said (I'm In Heaven When You Smile)
  2. Have I Told You Lately?
  3. Tupelo Honey
  4. And It Stoned Me
  5. Give Me A Kiss (Just One Sweet Kiss)
  6. Astral Weeks
  7. Moondance
  8. Irish Heartbeat
  9. Into The Mystic
  10. Someone Like You
*sigh* I heart Van.

Now for the story because I promised Poppy that I'd tell it some day and the appropriate day for this story is always St. Patrick's Day.

By the way smart folks make Poppy a daily reading stop. You're one of the smart folks, aren't you? You should be!

The reason I promised I'd tell this story for Poppy is because it takes place in and around St. Louis, where Poppy happens to live. It is the first and only time I ever visited the Gateway to the West and it left a lasting impression on me. And I left a lasting impression too, I'm afraid.

Back in 1983 I was in Arkansas attending a conversative Christian university located in a town about fifty miles northeast of Little Rock (that's another long story) and when spring break rolled around I didn't head to the beach like many spring breakers do. I headed for St. Louis with a friend of mine who lived on the same floor of my dorm. She actually was from a small town in Illinois - Columbia - just over the river from St. Louis.

Being as we were straightjacketed during the school year, Gloria and I used the week away from Arkansas to break bad and St. Patrick's Day was going to be our high point.

The evening started innocently enough. Joined by a friend of Gloria's, her name completely lost on me now, we drove into St. Louis where we had a traditional St. Patrick's Day dinner of Mexican food. It seemed Irish to us...the beer was green and so was the popcorn given to us to snack on while our pile of burritos and nachos and enchiladas were being prepared. Oh yes - nothing cools the fire of chili peppers better than a nice, cold, green beer.

After we left the restaurant things began to blur. I could never really tell when we were in Missouri or Illinois and while I knew the names St. Louis, Columbia and Belleville, I wasn't always sure where they were in relation to each other. The night just became a cycle of drive to a bar, drink, drive to a bar, drink, drive to a bar - lather, rinse, repeat.

At one point we went to a restaurant called The Monastery. What was interesting to us besides the green beer they were shelling out were the young waiters, all dressed as monks. We were pretty full of ourselves by then and flirtation was turned up to eleven. We eventually left the restaurant with the promise to come back at midnight when the restaurant would be closed so the monks could join us.

And yes, these monks weren't wearing anything under their robes. When challenged, they proved it.

More bars, more drinking...well the friend of Gloria's wasn't really drinking as she was driving. No worries - Gloria and I drank her share. Horrible things like sloe gin fizzes and amaretto sours and vodka collinses and beer. Always the green, green beer. We balanced out the alcohol with large amounts of green popcorn that was available in every bar we entered. Midnight rolled around and Gloria and I begged her friend to drive us back to The Monastery. She wasn't crazy for the idea and was even less crazy for it when we arrived and found only two guys waiting for us, neither one paying her an iota of attention. Finally fed up she insisted that we leave as she wanted to go home - she was driving so she was in control. The former monks wanted us to go out to some bar called The Elbow Room and said they'd drive us back to Columbia. Since monk/waiters tend to look a lot more hot when you're drunk and since decision making becomes a lot more clouded when you're drunk, the guys won out.

I don't remember much about The Elbow Room except it was a sort of cheesy lounge with a really horrible piano player who played Color My World and made it sound even more like a dirge than it already is. It's at this point where my memory fails me until we were back in the car. Oh the car. That poor, poor car.

The car in question was some sort of Chevy convertable from the 60s. Red with white leather interior. It belonged to the brother of the driver - the monk-waiter that belonged to Gloria. I found myself in the backseat with my monk. I have no idea where the last bar we were in was located but I can remember a lot of winding back roads that seemed to go on forever. And the more the road wound, the more nauseated I got. Suddenly all that Mexican food and green popcorn and candy ass cocktails and those gallons of green beer began their grand rebellion.

Unable to look at the winding road any longer I put my head down - in the lap of my monk. He must have thought it a grand idea because he began petting and stroking my hair. He could have been cutting my hair off with a butter knife for all I cared - all I could concentrate on was keeping the contents of my stomach in my stomach.

It all seemed to happen at once. At just about the same time that I began to feel suffocated and overheated I noticed that my monk was shifting under my head and in about the vicinity of my ear I felt one of the most enormous erections I've ever had the fortune to come across. As it turns out it would be his misfortune because I needed to get my head up and out of a window. Now.

It became a scene of me struggling to sit up, him holding my head down while murmuring "No...stay...stay right there..." and panic setting in. Gloria was in the front seat chatting up the driving monk, I was beginning to panic and my monk thought he was on a fast track to a sex act in a moving vehicle.

You know I told him to let me up. I warned him. I told him I was sick. He didn't listen. And there's a punishment when you don't listen.

His punishment was a lapful of vomit. It seemed like every single thing I'd consumed in the last eight hours was coming up all at once. It seemed like every single thing I'd consumed in the last eight years was coming up all at once. I kept throwing up, the horny monk began screaming "Pull over! Pull over! She's puking!" and I could just feel Gloria thinking "I'm going to kill her!".

The car was pulled over, all of us scrambled out like we were on fire, a flashlight was produced and we surveyed the damage. You know when it's dark you can only imagine the damage in a situation like that. Unfortunately when you shine some light on the situation it's often much, much worse.

I have never seen anything before or since quite like it. Oh there was vomit, alright. It was like a vomit massacre. And it was green. Jesus, Mary and holy St. Joseph, it was the greenest green I've ever seen. Beyond lime green. Beyond grass green. The rolling grassy knolls of Ireland don't sport a green quite this intense.

I thought Gloria was going to kill me and throw by body into the woods. There we were, in the middle of nowhere with two strange guys in a borrowed car and I have hosed down the entire pristine white leather backseat with puke, not to metion the sleeve of my coat and the lap of my now less than amorous monk. Gloria and I were fairly sure we were going to be left standing on the side of the road in the middle of the night.

Fortunately we had monks with manners. Towels were produced from the trunk, vomit wiped up, laps and sleeves tidied as best as possible and we continued on our way.

The goodbyes were short and plans discussed earlier in the evening to meet the next night were magically forgotten. Gloria and I were just happy to arrive home without having to hike fifteen miles first.

There's no real end to this story except to say that forevermore the incident was referred to as the Hurling o' the Green. And in the twenty-three years that have passed I have yet to ever drink again on St. Patrick's Day.

Enjoy your St. Patrick's Day and your weekend. If you're inclined to, have a pint for me. Just don't blame me if it doesn't stay down.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

What I do for those I adore

Let's get a bit meme-ish, shall we? It's a sure way to chase away late winter blues.

I've been tagged by Sally. She's an actress, did you know that? Been in movies. And plays. And TV shows. Showed her boobs on screen too. And she lives in London. I love London! I've been to London and did I see Sal while I was there? No! 'Cause she had to go to Norway or Denmark or some other place the one week I was there. She was off acting and missed me!

But I love her dearly. And she sends me PG Tips and HobNobs so I love her double. And she sent me Hellmann's mayonnasie too. Did you know that Hellmann's is the mayonnaise of choice for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II? I did! Armed with that knowledge I'm ready now to go on Jeopardy!

On with the meme...

Four jobs you have had in your life:
Dry Cleaner
Bank Teller
Customer service for a power utility
Payroll assistant

Four movies you would watch over and over
The Best Years of Our Lives
To Kill a Mockingbird
Der Himmel über Berlin

Four places you have lived
Corinth, Mississippi
Memphis, Tennessee
Manassas, Virginia
Magdeburg, Germany

Four TV shows you love to watch
Desperate Housewives
Gilmore Girls

Four places you have been on vacation
Williamsburg, Virginia - loved it.
London, England - really loved it.
Bethany Beach, Delaware - was drunk the entire time.
Lake o' the Pines, Texas - should have been drunk the entire time so I could bear the boredom.

Four websites I visit daily
My whole Blogroll
Ga-Ga for Ya-Yas
Boxerjam Games

Four of my favorite foods
French Fries

Four places I'd rather be right now
My sister's kitchen
Mollie's livingroom
Adelaide, Australia

I won't tag but gladly invite anyone in needed of some meme goodness to steal and have fun with it.

Split the difference

The good thing about going to the same Chinese take-out on a likely-too-frequent basis is that when you come in the owners greet you like you're a celebrity.

The bad thing is that they know exactly what you'll order and follow it up with "You're having that again?".

The baked bananas with honey they throw in for free makes up for the the unavoidable cringing grimmace you make.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Ennui is dead!

Ever dread something to the point where you even contemplate backing away? I do that sometimes. Despite the fact that I dragged myself up and moved to Germany without a safety net or a English-German dictionary, I am not very good at new situations. I like my comfort zones. A big reason why I'm content with being home most of the time caring for a quadriplegic - aside from the fact that he's cute and has an amazing personality - is that I'm best when in my comfort zone. I crave the familiar and straying too far from it makes me uneasy. It's that thing I have for being liked. I like to be where I know I'm liked. Having said that, imagine the anxiety and near nausea I worked up this morning anticipating meeting up with someone I met through my blog.

Laura (everyone wave to Laura - she the nice lady with the gorgeous curly hair lurking there in the back) is an American who happens to be in Magdeburg with her husband while he's here on business. Through sheer luck, Googling skills and her love for yarn and the need to buy some she found this here blog. She emailed me to say hello, ask me about buying yarn here in my adopted hometown and after a few exchanges and her reading through the archives here we found that we had a lot in common. Some things are so in common I was expecting Rod Serling to pop out any moment and the creepy music to start up.

Now I had to do it. It was time to put aside my craving for routine, step out of my comfort zone and meet her in person. Americans in Magdeburg aren't common. Americans in Magdeburg who write nice emails are less common. And Americans in Magdeburg who love knitting have got to be fewer still so I'd be crazy not to meet with her. How could I pass up meeting someone that speaks the same language and knits?

I won't say that I had second thoughts about our meet-up this afternoon. I will say, however, that I was on the verge of whipping myself into a froth over it and I became nearly nauseated with anxiety. I set out earlier than I needed to with the idea of walking slowly over to her hotel. A slow walk on a cold day should surely keep down the nausea, right?

I'll admit it. Freely admit it. I was wrong. I had nothing to be anxious about. All my worries and anxiety and queasy stomach was for nothing. I'll just say it. She's fabulous. Fab. u. lous. Fun, easy to talk with, interesting, witty - all those things you wish for in a person when you meet them for the first time, Laura's got them.

It was easy to start off our outing - go where the yarn is! She helped me pick out some 50% silk 50% rayon yarn for my Cozy wrap and she's convinced me that knitting socks on 2 circs is the way to go so I bought needles for that purpose. I loved that about her - she encouraged me to branch out and try new stuff with my knitting and to become a better knitter through it. It was great that she answered my questions and explained things so nicely and didn't think it was so bad that I'm still just a novice knitter.

After that we headed for a restaurant where we talked without a break. There wasn't one lull in the conversation, not one awkward moment, not one minute of dullness. The more we talked the more we found that we have in common and not only little things like our wedding dates being one day apart but we understood the relationships each of us has with our husbands. Her nursing experience lets her have first hand knowledge of what it's like to be someone's caretaker. We could realte to divorce and meeting someone online and marrying them. We just got each other.

After all that it wasn't much of a surprise to find out that she was anxious about getting out of her own comfort zone to meet me.

The afternoon went on and I brought her back to my apartment so she could meet B. I can't help it - I like to show him off. After a good conversation with him I walked with Laura back to her hotel and I got to meet her husband and then in an effort to wring out every last available minute of this visit (they're leaving town tomorrow) they walked me halfway back home while on their way out to get supper. Just a lovely, lovely couple.

So since I know she'll peek in here let me take a minute to thank Laura for a really great afternoon. I needed it. I needed a break from my routine. I needed that trip outside my comfort zone. I needed to know that I could get away from being the wife and caretaker and just do girl stuff for a while and remember how wonderful and rejuvenating it can be. Thank you for the conversation, for the knitting lesson, the goody bag and most of all for great compliments. Let me know when you get back to Magdeburg. We'll hop a train and go find yarn.

Oh. And thank you Google!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Clue found

Leave it up to my clever friends. The Barefooted One was able to figure out what I was doing wrong with the Cozy pattern. Thank God and all his little chubby angels that I have clever friends. Of course now B will not like her since figuring out the pattern means I can now go out and spend lots and lots of money on silk to knit this wrap.

Nah. Won't happen. B thinks she's very groovy. Me too.

Now don't run away yet, non-knitters. We have pictures! Proof that I can actually knit something.

Image hosting by Photobucket

This is the baby blanket I knit for my friend, Tiffany. It's for her two-year-old and I figured he needed something a little more big boyish. It's just a simple stockingette stitch with a garter stitch border and it shows off the veriegated colors very nicely.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Close up. Feel free to ooh and ahh.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Finished and, at the time the photo was taken, unblocked baby blanket for my friend, Zea's, little girl.

Image hosting by Photobucket

I love this part where the four different sections meet.

Image hosting by Photobucket

And I love the moss stitch border. So puffy and squishy with this soft, soft yarn.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Couldn't you just run your fingers over that all day?

And as for non-knitting related goings on...

B's dermatologist was here today and pronounced his missing toenail very clean and good looking - for a missing toenail, that is. He also nearly laughed himself silly when I told him I was the one who tore off the loose nail. He knows I'm such a weenie about such things. Told him I nearly fainted and he damn near wet his pants.

Nothing more today. Just longing for some warmer weather so I can wash my ski jacket. It's starting to smell weird.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Without a clue

Sorry, non-knitters. I have to talk about knitting for a moment because I need a little assistance but you're welcome to read on if you're bored, want to learn about knitting or are feeling particularly masochistic.

Now, as for you yarn types:

I need a little help with lace knitting. I've not done it before but I think I get how it should go. I've also never - gulp! - knitted anything where I had to make decreases. I am hooked on the rectangle!

Anyway, I'd like to knit Cozy from Knitty and I seem to be bollocksing up something and I need to get this straight before I buy actual silk and make it for real (right now I'm practicing with some scrap wool).

Anyway, one is to cast on 85 stitches and the pattern goes in multiples of six stitches plus one. The pattern calls for the first stitch of the odd numbered rows to be knitted - that takes care of the plus one. The rest of the pattern is for 84 stitches in multiples of six so that means I'd be making 14 repeats. I suck at math and all but even I can figure out that much.

Wait - let me get out the calculator and double check.

Anyway I have cast this thing on three times now. I count and recount and I know I've cast on 85 stitches. My problem is I don't get 14 rounds of repeats. I knit along and end up, for example on the first row, with 4 stitches left and I need more than that for a pattern round.

So let me tell you what I'm doing and one or all of you tell me what I'm doing wrong.

This is the pattern for the first row:

Row 1: K1, [YO, k2tog tbl, k1, k2tog, YO, k1] to end.

This is what I'm doing:

I knit the 1st stitch. I do a yarn over on the 2nd stitch. I knit together the 3rd and 4th stitches through their back loops. I knit the 5th stitch. I knit together the 6th and 7th stitches. I do a yarn over on the 8th stitch. I knit the 9th stitch.

I can see right there that I've used up 9 stitches instead of 7 like the pattern is making me think I should. Obviously I either can't read this pattern or I am doing something wrong. What am I doing wrong? I'm supposed to do this repeat pattern until the end of the row but I only have four stitches at the end of the row and I can't do the whole repeat pattern with just four stitches.

Let's take another row where I don't know my ass from my elbow about what I'm doing:

Row 3: K1, [YO, k1, sl1, k2tog, psso, k1, YO, k1] to end.

This is what I do:

I knit the 1st stitch. I do a yarn over with the 2nd stitch. I knit the 3rd stitch. I slip the 4th stitch knitwise from the left to the right needle. I knit together the 5th and 6th stitches. I take the 4th stitch that I slipped to the right needle and pass it over the 5th and 6th stitches I knit together. I knit the 7th stitch. I do a yarn over with the 8th stitch. I knit the 9th stitch.

Again, this doesn't come out evenly.

I got to this row:

Row 7: K2tog, [k1, YO, k1, YO, k1, sl1, k2tog, psso] to last 5 sts, k1, YO, k1, YO, k1, k2tog tbl.

and felt like finding the nearest brick wall on which I could slam my head repeatedly.

Essentially the only rows I'm not screwing up are the even rows where I purl only.

If any of y'all know what I'm doing wrong or can explain how to do this right, let me know. Email me if you don't want to leave a comment.

Okay, you non-knitters can join the class again. Knit talk is over. Let me say I'm proud of you for behaving yourself while standing in the hallway.

Nothing new for an update on the weekend. It snowed. I watched movies and finished off the first season of Gilmore Girls on DVD. I knitted. Both of the baby blankets I was working on are finished.

Oops. Lied when I said knit talk was over.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Friday Shuffle - British Invasion Edition

You know, if there's anything that makes cheesy pop music better it's being cheesy pop music from Britian!
  1. Sunshine Superman - Donovan
  2. Silence is Golden - The Tremeloes
  3. Sugar Baby Love - The Rubettes
  4. New York Mining Disaster 1941 - BeeGees
  5. To Sir, With Love - Lulu
  6. I Don't Want To See You Again - Peter & Gordon
  7. Everytime I Think Of You - The Babys
  8. Come And Get It - Badfinger
  9. For Your Love - The Yardbirds
  10. Tired Of Waiting For You - The Kinks
More British than beans at breakfast!

And in keeping with our British theme...

~ I'm so heartbroken that the English shop where I get my PG Tips fix no longer carries chocolate HobNobs. No HobNobs of any sort! No more nobbly, oaty goodness for me!

My blood sugar is likely very happy about that. I've been rationalizing it as extra fiber.

~ This afternoon I watched 84 Charing Cross Road for what must be the dozenth time. I've never read the book but I loved the movie from the first time I watched it and every time I come across it on TV I have to stop and see it again. I was always captivated by the idea that people could forge a friendship through correspondence alone. Now when I watch it I can see some of myself in the film because of the friendships I cherish with people from all over the world - people I've never seen and likely will never see.

Y'all swing on your weekend like a pendulum do.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Ships passing

Just about this time of day ten years ago today I met my husband. On the internet.

If you told me then that I'd just met the man I'd marry three years later I'd have said "Oh wow! Hope he's hot!".

He is.

Eat A Peach

I could use some fun, couldn't you? And what better way to have some cheap and easy fun than with a pointless meme?

Where do you get a pointless meme? From Mr. Fabulous at Pointless Drivel, natch! He's cheap and easy fun as well.

Pick a musical group. Answer the questions with a song title from that group.

Okay, let's get off the beaten path. No U2. No REM. No White Stripes. While I love all three, let's get challenging. Let's go with the Allman Brothers Band.

1. Are you male or female? Black Hearted Woman
2. Describe yourself: Mystery Woman
3. How do some people feel about you? Good Clean Fun
4. How do you feel about yourself? I Got a Right To Be Wrong
5. Describe current relationship with boyfriend/girlfriend: Crazy Love
6. Describe where you want to be: Hot 'Lanta
7. Describe how you live: Ain't Wastin' Time No More
8. Describe how you love: Straight From The Heart
9. What would you ask for if you had just one wish? Whipping Post (Not really but I wasn't going to pass up using that for an answer.)
10. Share a few words of wisdom: Get On With Your Life
11. Now say goodbye: Leavin'

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Go Forward

It's pretty well known by all that when a person doesn't use his muscles, they atrophy. What's not normally considered is that the muscles in the fingers and toes of a quadriplegic can atrophy as well making the nails not sit quite the same. Even though B doesn't walk, his poor toenails take a beating. The skin around them is a bit slack and very soft and it's quite easy for him to end up with an ingrown toenail. I try to be very careful with his toes and try to keep the nails healthy but it's a struggle.

This afternoon as I was bathing B I held his left leg up to dry it. While whisking the towel around I felt it hang firm and then loosen up and knew I'd caught the towel on one of his toenails. Upon further examination I saw that I'd torn B's toenail away from his toe and peering closer I saw that it was attached to his toe only at the very bottom.

Cue freaking out.

I didn't know what to do at that point. Do I just clean it and bandage it leaving the nail in its present state and let the dermatologist see it next week when he comes by or do I think of it like a loose baby tooth and just pull it off? I thought pulling it all the way off would be the way the doctor would handle it were he there but he wasn't there. I was there and I didn't relish the idea of yanking off a toenail, even one barely attached.

At this point I was feeling nauseated and my gag reflex was working overtime. B, of course, can't feel the pain exactly but he can feel that there is something going on and he knows it must be pain because he began to sweat and his foot was jumping and jerking like a flounder thrown up on a dock.

I didn't feel brave tackling this. I felt woozy and a bit put out that I'm always the one stuck doing the gross shit. I grabbed a sterile gauze pad, set my jaw and began to gently pull the toenail free. I could hear the TV on in the background and as I pulled the sound seemed to get tinnier and fainter. My focus narrowed to just the toe in question and I pulled a bit more and a bit more. By the time I had freed the toenail the room was growing dark with bits of light like fireflies flitting before my eyes and I had to suddenly sit on the floor because I was on the verge of fainting. I just don't handle things like this too well. I get grossed out pulling the skin off of chicken because it seems unnatural to do it, nevermind how unnatural it feels to pull a toenail away from a toe.

A few minutes later I had my wits back and my blood pressure back up and I set to disinfecting the raw area (much less blood than I thought there'd be!) and putting a sterile bandage on it. I'll change it daily and if it gets funky I'll call the doctor.

It was just a few minutes after getting through this drama that I heard that Dana Reeve had passed away and I thought "You know, if there's anyone who can relate to what I've just had to do, it would be her.".

Dana Reeve's death is tragic and sad. The idea of her teenage son having lost both his father and mother in less than two years is heartbreaking. And of course the foundation she and Christopher Reeve worked so tirelessly for will feel the loss of her efforts and her voice. But it's on a more personal level that I mourn her death. She was one of us. She was the spouse of a person with a spinal cord injury.

All caregivers of someone with an SCI have to keep the balance of having their own life and doing their caregiving but spouses have an extra fine line that sometimes becomes blurred and easy to cross. We have to care for our spouse but we also have to keep the marriage relationship intact. It's very easy for us to let ourselves slip into a sort of "mommy" identity with our spouse and it can be damaging to a relationship. It's important for us to keep the caregiver and the husband/wife relationships separate. Dana Reeve understood that and she set a wonderful example for other caregivers.

I liked the way she tried to keep her own identity. I like how she gave full credit for the help she received from others and showed that there is no shame in asking for and receiving help with caretaking. I like how she kept her sense of humor and really understood that when stuff was difficult or irritating or even downright disgusting, sometimes the best solution was to just see the humor in it. I like how she didn't play the martyr and she didn't see her husband as a burden. I admired her commitment. I admired her dignity. I admired how she honored the dignity of her husband.

I'm sorry there's one less of us in the world. One less caregiver of a SCI spouse who understands how we're just a little bit different than the rest. And I'm sorry that today and tomorrow and the next day new caretakers will be created because their spouse will be involved in some accident that leaves them with a spinal cord injury but the life of Dana Reeve and the work she's done and the example she set will make it easier for them to walk that blurry, thin line.

Monday, March 06, 2006


I think we're reaching critial mass with my late-winter doldrums and general ennui. I've now become so sluggish that I am almost downright shiftless and only stir myself long enough to take care of B (regardless of how lazy I become, my care for B never waivers one iota - I'm very rigid about this), keep us in cooked meals and clean dishes, get enough laundry done to keep our butts covered, knit and work the remote controls. Everything else, however, is sliding. It's only B and I here and B's not really able to mess things up so our apartment never gets completely dirty...mostly it just gets cluttered with old paper that need to be taken to the recycler and everything's covered with a thin layer of dust and dog hair. I have no interest in getting outside to do more than walk the dog, restock the larder and maybe go to the DVD rental place (even the lure of the touch screens has eroded) and only then if I feel like going out twice in a day because I pride myself on getting a DVD back within 3 hours so I only have to pay 49 cents for the rental.

No shit, if spring doesn't come soon and with it my zest for doing something - anything! - of real interest and consequence then I predict that within the next month I'll become some sort of pasty white hermit complete with matted hair and threadbare clothing who shys away from sunlight like Frankenstein's monster from a torch.

I'm trying to think of myself as being on the verge of bursting forth from my self imposed chrysalis. Sounds a bit more high minded than "I'm being downright slovenly but I'll get my ass in gear soon.".

Friday, March 03, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Fighting a Cold Edition

Reaching under the piles of tissue to switch on Bixente the iPod, set him to shuffle and see what sort of love he gives back to me.
  1. Sunday Morning Coming Down - Johnny Cash
  2. Louisiana 1927 - Aaron Neville
  3. Tall, Tall Trees - Alan Jackson
  4. String of Pearls - Glenn Miller Orchestra
  5. Human - The Human League
  6. Porcelain - Better Than Ezra
  7. Once in a Very Blue Moon - Nanci Griffith
  8. Mr. Brightside - Killers
  9. This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak For You) - The Isley Brothers
  10. Scarecrow People - XTC
Ahhh...I feel my sinus pain easing already.

And as for the rest of my day...

~ My sinus infection is somewhat better - thanks for all the sympathy and get well wishes! I feel better now that I did this afternoon.

~ When I went to the bakery this morning I saw a clown walking around on the street, sort of hanging around near the streetcar stop. I had to bolt in the other direction. I can't do clown before I've had my tea.

~ You know I'm sick if while shopping this afternoon I attempted to squeeze by an employee restocking the condensed milk and she snapped at me "I'm working here!" and all I did was mumble an "I'm sorry.". Had I been feeling better I'd have smiled and perhaps direct her to a new site upon her person where she could restock her condensed milk.

~ I wasn't able to resist buying lipstick today. It cheered me up even though it turns out that it's a little dry feeling.

~ Choco Leibniz cookies pretty much make up for not being able to get Girl Scout cookies.

Have a swellegant weekend, y'all.

Thursday, March 02, 2006


Sinus infection. Antibiotics. Cough syrup. Tea. Lip balm. Nasal spray. Enormous amounts of tissue.

And lots of sleep.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Wearing the "kick me" sign

I don't mean to whine and bitch and complain but in the last 24 hours I haven't been able to catch many breaks.

~ In the middle of the night when I was not feeling particularly sleepy I was up knitting and watching the news and I felt my glasses wobble on my nose and go lopsided. As I took them off the left lens fell into my lap and I could see the plastic wire that holds the lenses on the bottom side had broken up close to where it attaches to the bridge. This would be the 700€ pair of glasses I bought last July. And where were my old spare pair of glasses? Don't ask you? Don't ask me either! I had no idea where they could be since I had no particular recollection of seeing them since moving to this apartment. All I could think was that they were still in one of the eight unpacked boxes and I couldn't see shit so that I could find them. I tried to put in a pair of my contact lenses but my eyes were already itchy and red and achy from it being the middle of the night that slipping a lens into my eye was about like taking a Brillo pad and poking it into my eyeball repeatedly. I resorted to putting on B's glasses which aren't nearly as strong as mine but at least kept me from stumbling around completely blind. First box - no glasses. Second box - no glasses. Third, forth, glasses. I looked in every box - even boxes that I knew only contained my teacup collection and a punchbowl with matching cups and I couldn't find my spare glasses. SHIT!!

I was so furious with myself and so tired that I was giving up and going to bed. After some sleep then I could try wearing my contact lenses and go to the optician to get my glasses repaired and hope it wasn't a repair that would require them to be sent away for a week.

I was still fuming inside and picked up some PC games that have been sitting on one of the computer tables to put them in the cabinet where we keep all the computer stuff. And what was in there? Why, there was the bag that not only held the cases with my spare glasses and B's spares but the receipts for the purchases of our glasses. I was grateful but so wound up and so angry with myself for my mad organization skills that I couldn't sleep.

~ Today when I had a little spare time I decided that I wouldn't use the time to unpack moving boxes but instead I'd redeem the gift certificate for iTunes that Mollie gave me for my birthday. When I got the gift cert in my email I was so excited that I didn't read the fine print so when I looked at it again today I noticed that I could only redeem the gift cert at the US iTunes store. Great! No problem! I went to the US iTunes store and they wanted me to make an account! Great! No problem! I started filling out the information and they wanted a credit card from me. Great! No problem! And that's when I saw the part where it says "If your credit card billing address is not in the US, click here". Begin descent into shit. I clicked on the place to let them know that my credit card billing address is in Germany and they took me to the German iTunes store. Very nice but I can't use the gift cert at the German iTunes store because that would...oh...I dunno...make my life simple! And the US iTunes store can't take my German credit card billing address because that would...oh...I dunno...make my life simple! Make my life simple and actually put them into the 21st century because, Internet based merchants, if you're going to have an international product it would behoove you to allow purchasing be done internationally! iTunes and W@lmart both don't allow international billing with credit cards that can be use all over God's green earth and you know what that means? It means those nudniks don't get my money. Until you allow me to purchase things in your US based stores with my German billing M@sterC@rd, you don't get to have my money.

Know who lets me buy stuff in their US based store with my German billing credit card? And that's why the Peach loves her some I spend a freaking fortune there year in and year out because I can go to their website and buy, buy, buy for my family and friends in the US, have it shipped directly to them and my German billing credit card gets charged with. no. problem. what. so. ever. Get a clue, iTunes!

And then I had to tell Mollie this whole stupid saga and apologize like a madman about ten times because I'd been dicking around with her lovely, generous gift and while I deserved to have her clunk me in the head for it she was gracious and wonderful as ever and we have it all worked out, so there!

~ Dear Weather Man or St. Peter or whoever is controlling the weather. Make it stop snowing. Now. If one more flake of white crap falls out of the sky, someone's gonna get a bruising. It's now March and it's time for snow to be over. And don't tell me that it's not much snow. I don't care. No. more. snow. Time to get one with spring.

~ It's official. The German national soccer teams blows. Italy embarrassed the complete shit out of them - 4-1! Guys, the World Cup starts in 100 days! You keep playing at this level and you'll be back home with the wife and kids in 110 days!

~ Since about 5:30 this evening I've been sneezing like crazy and my nose alternates between running and being completely clogged. Since my eyes are also itchy and a bit weepy I thought it might be my hayfever getting cranked up but hey! there's nothing even sort of blooming here because hey! it's snowing again!

Y'all are wishing I'd go back to yarn talk, aren't you?