Dixie Peach: July 2006

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Monday, July 31, 2006


There was a time when B thought he'd never be in a relationship ever again. There was a time I thought I could never be in a good one. Then our paths crossed and fate proved us both wrong.

Today is our seventh wedding anniversary. Maybe it's a sign of success but there are times when it feels as though we got married only yesterday and other times it feels as if we've always been married. Perhaps when you've done it right time blurs and the bond seems ancient while the memories stay fresh.

We did our celebrating yesterday. Friends joined us at our favorite restaurant to celebrate and reminisce over our wedding day. Memories were discussed and we all agreed that it was as close to a perfect day as we could have hoped for - right down to there being one liter of beer left in the keg as the last guest left.

So if you'll indulge me for a moment I'd just like to take this opportunity to tell the world that I have the most wonderful husband that I could ever want and I have a marriage that's happier than I ever thought possible. Every happily married couple says their husband or wife is the best in the world and I'm no different. I have the best husband in the world for me and I'm grateful to him for his love, devotion, patience, kindness, humor and the bond we have between us that grows ever stronger with every passing year. I am blessed.

Thank you for everything you are to me, sweetheart. I love you without end.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Sleep Deprivation Edition

The inability to sleep more than two hours at a time with stretches of sweltering wakefulness that lasts for hours has left me semi-cranky. Understandble, I'm sure, but it has me being irked at rather petty things.


There are two types of people who shouldn't be allowed in grocery stores. The first would be people who cannot seem to walk behind their basket without being slumped over the handle, shuffling aimlessly through the aisles, usually directly in the middle. They strongly remind me of my ex-husband who used to drive my Jeep with his arms thrown up over the top of the steering wheel, his back all hunched over. I kid you not, it's one of the reasons I divorced him. A minor reason, but it was on the list! The second would be people who allow their small children to push the basket and thus having them bang it repeatedly into my own, into the backs of my legs or parking the basket in an awkward angle blocking up the whole aisle while mommy studies a display of the same brand of mustard and she doesn't seem to be able to decide which God blessed jar to pick up.

But we've had a bit of rain early this evening and I'm anticipating a more restful night so let's shuffle. And a shuffle is about as much speed as I can work up at the moment - I'm so tired I wouldn't walk across the room if the cure for my exhaustion were there waiting for me.
  1. Someday Someway - Marshall Crenshaw
  2. Again Someday - Blackmore's Night
  3. Cherish - Association
  4. Little Brown Jug - Glenn Miller Orchestra
  5. Run - Snow Patrol (Hey Shuffle - no one likes a smartass.)
  6. In My Dreams - The Mavericks (Damn tease.)
  7. Whenever You're On My Mind - Marshall Crenshaw
  8. Welcome To Paradise - Green Day
  9. Alt wie ein Baum - The Puhdys
  10. Whatever Gets You Through The Night - John Lennon & Elton John (Sleep, Shuffle...sleep would get me through the night.)
Double Marshall Crenshaw. Fitting, as it reminds me of when I saw him in Baltimore in 1983 - it was about 400 degrees that night as well and everyone standing in line to get into the club nearly suffocated.

Y'all have a restful weekend.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Thursday Haiku Blogging

My sweet buddy, Monica, was a tad disappointed last week when I didn't Haiku Thursday. I shall not disappoint her this week.

Tell me I don't play to my audience!

My life in 5-7-5 syllable verse:

Cool chocolate cream cake
Why give me wretched heartburn?
Grope for antacid.

Weird man at market
Knows what veggies are on list
Psychic or psycho?

Only sleep in spurts
My life is just one long day
Broken up by naps.

Ripped off by weather
Thunder and wind but no rain
Nature's just a tease.

Bonnie rests her head
Furry face against my leg
She wants my ice cream.

Sleep under window
Night breeze floating over me
Skin's been craving this.

Time for another iced tea break.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Words I've Never Learned To Say In German

~ saliva
~ hubcap
~ crutch
~ escape
~ varnish
~ skim
~ rodent
~ harvest
~ thread
~ crotch
~ shoelace
~ The name for that little divot under your nose.

You'd think after 8 1/2 years they'd have come up in conversation at least once.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Variations On A Theme

Descartes: Dubito ergo cogito; cogito ergo sum. (I doubt, therefore I think; I think therefore I am.)

Dixie: Hotito ergo sweatito; sweatito ergo irk. (I'm hot, therefore I sweat; I sweat and I'm sick to death of it.)

Some days it's hard to tell me and Rene apart, eh?

Monday, July 24, 2006

Lessons My Mother-In-Law Taught Me

1. The baby toe of a 72 year old woman is no match against the corner of a large sectional sofa.

2. The striking of one's baby toe against the corner of a large sectional sofa can cause it to jut out from one's foot at a near 90° angle.

Get in the car Mutti and let's go to the doctor. I'll save my full body shudder for later.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Easy Does It Edition

I'd like to say that even though it's been unusually hot here for the past few weeks, heat induced crankiness and general bad moods have been kept at bay in my home. Maybe it's because we've been very easy going and not expecting much of ourselves in terms of what gets done. It's too hot to perform normal chores and errands so we've chosen to stay in whenever possible, nap when one isn't sweating too profusely, cook little, not worry about things like the floors being less than absolutely tidy, drink plenty of water and iced tea and in general be lazy. It's like having a Mexican siesta break that doesn't end. Instead I fill my time doing only what has to be done (in other words, just taking care of B), reading and knitting. I've been able to finish a pair of socks (and try them on without wigging out from the heat too much) and have started on another pair - this one in various hues of cool, happy green.

The floors are a little funky but we're happy, hydrated, and trying to catch any available breeze.

Let's shuffle...but slowly so as to not work up a sweat.
  1. Something To Talk About - Badly Drawn Boy
  2. Caring is Creepy - The Shins
  3. Waitin' On A Sunny Day - Bruce Springsteen
  4. This Is Where I Came In - BeeGees
  5. Tougher Than The Rest - Chris LeDoux
  6. James Dean - The Eagles
  7. She Said, She Said - The Beatles
  8. Be My Baby - The Ronettes
  9. Dragostea Din Tei - O-Zone
  10. Young Americans - David Bowie
Have a cool, cool, peaceful weekend.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Close Your Mind's Eye

I was up early, early, early this morning and at the grocery store before the heat had a chance to crank up to epic proportions. As soon as I came in I shed my street clothes in favor of panties and a sleevless t-shirt and that's been all I've been wearing for the rest of the day.

I realize that this last sentence may have left you with an unwanted mental image but desperate measures had to be taken. And please know that I didn't go out of my apartment nor even onto my balcony while in this state of dress. I may be sweaty, but I am courteous to my neighbors.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Hot and Fast

It's hot. If you're in Europe, I don't have to tell you that because you're likely a puddle of sweat yourself. If you're in the US, you're probably in your own heatwave but you've got air conditioning.

Sweet, sweet air conditioning.

To that end, I'm desperately trying to keep all efforts to a minimum, blog entries included. We're just hitting the highlights here, folks!

~ Know all that lace knitting I've been doing? I've got one wrap and two scarves on needles. I put it all aside while I've been indulging myself in sock knitting. And...uh...I've completely lost, never to be seen again misplaced the row counter for the wrap and I've mixed up the row counters for the two scarves. I know for a fact that I'm in the middle of pattern rounds on all three and right now I have no earthly idea what row I'm on with any of them. Pardon me while I bash my sweaty forehead on a brick wall.

~ I'd like to say a special thank you to the customs agent that didn't make me pay customs and tax on 25 pairs of costume jewelry earrings sent to me by a friend. Of course after a half hour ride on a stuffy, hot streetcar in 97 degree heat to get to the customs office I was looking a bit crazed so maybe she either felt sorry for me or feared me.

~ I had to try on the sock I was knitting to see how much further I need to knit the foot. What a strange feeling of panic it gave me - almost like I was afraid I wouldn't get the sock off and the hot wool would somehow bond itself to my skin permanently.

~ Eh...enough of this. It's too hot to write. And my legs seem to be stuck to my leather office chair. Time for me to pry them loose and fetch more ice water.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Belinda and BlogHer

Even though I'm not very good at mingling with strangers, I think that were it possible, I'd dig going to BlogHer. Just to perhaps meet those whose writing is inspiring and entertaining and maybe perhaps get my own ego fed. Just a little bit.

So in the interest of getting to know other women bloggers, whether they're attending the conference or not, BlogMe was born. It's like cocktail party chat, blog style.

The lovely Belinda...this Belinda, not this Belinda...I have to say which because they are equally lovely...has thoughtfully tagged me. Want to read about how this all works? Click on this thing right here.


I'm picking some questions at random from the link. Nothing like controling your own interview, eh?

When did you start blogging and why?

I started my blog in August, 2004. I wish I could say that my initial motivation was to release my inner writer but my first motivation was just to see what blogging was all about. I hadn't even read more than a half dozen other blogs before I started my own and I wasn't even sure if it would be more than a passing whim for me. I had no idea how to get readers and at that point I wasn't even sure if I wanted readers. A few months passed and somehow I actually got a few readers and that's when I started to take blogging more seriously - at least in terms of making sure my blog is updated on a regular basis. I had been very hit-or-miss about it all until my dear friend, Lisa, told me that she would get disappointed when she clicked on my blog and I hadn't updated it yet. If I blabber on too much, blame her.

How do you use blogging to build friendships?

I live in Germany and I'm well away from my family and friends in America. And since I'm the one who cares for my quadriplegic husband, my ability to get out and socialize is limited. The online world has stepped in to fill that void in my social life. About six months ago I was incorporated into a community of ex-patriates and we're able to share our lives and experiences of the ex-pat life with each other and friendships start from there. When you read someone's blog on a near-daily basis and you comment on each other's blogs, friendships begin to spring up. It's the natural progression. I'm also a knitter and by joining knitting webrings and knit-alongs I've been able to get to know knitters from around the world. All you need is a sliver of common ground.

Who do you read every day, rain or shine?

Well with the exception of Mr. Fabulous, I don't know anyone who updates every single day, rain or shine. I do read everyone on my Blogroll when they have something new and I go back and check their comments again. Sometimes comments are as good as the blog entry itself. I will give special props though to PoppyMom. While Lisa may have been the one who urged me to write in my blog more, Poppy's the one who showed me how it's done. She's a great writer and her voice inspired me to find my own voice.

How do you feel about meeting bloggers in real life? Are you nervous?

I'm nervous meeting anyone new. Even so, meeting bloggers isn't really a big deal to me. I've been in online communities of one stripe or another for going on twelve years now and I've been meeting people I've initially met online for about as long. I moved to Europe and married one of them. As long as I've gotten to know the person at least a little bit online or through their blogs then meeting them in person is usually very easy. It's a giant room full of strangers that don't know me from Adam's off ox that freaks me out a little.

What is your favorite thing that you wrote? What got a strong reaction from readers?

This entry about my first months in college was probably the most difficult thing for me to write. I felt very exposed writing that and judging by their reactions, I think my readers felt that as well. Writing about the day I moved to Germany probably made the most readers cry. This entry about me pulling a plastic coat hanger over my head while at work and this entry about me getting stuck in my bathtub were the most fun for me to write. I think they got the most laughs.

Are you and your blogging persona the same person?

I'd say so. Those who know me in real life would call me on it if they weren't.

If you had a super power, what would it be?

I guess I'd want to fly or be all I Dream of Jeannie and be able to get from here to there by blinking my eyes. Right now being able to be in Germany and in Mississippi from one minute to the next would make my life so much better.

We'll do optional tagging. While I'd love to see Poppy and Kara and Ashley and Christina and Belinda answer some of these questions, there's no pressure to do it. Do it if you wish and even if I don't tag you by name, should you want to do it, I'd love to read it.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Flip a Coin

I want smooth sailing. I crave the even keel and I get twitchy if routine gets off course in a more than minor way.

That's the end of the sailing based cliches.

My life isn't one that allows a lot of flexibility because my husband depends on me to care for him. It's how our lives are structured and I like it that way. So when something comes up that make me have to make big, if temporary, changes, I balk. I freeze up. I can't decide whether to shit or go blind and I can't make a decision with confidence. I get worried that if I decide wrong I'm going to make things bad for a lot of people.

I called my sister yesterday and she said "Well I have to tell you about Mother.". I'd spoken with my mother last week and I was already aware that she's starting the downhill slide with her Alzheimer's but I can't see how bad things are. I can't see that she's having more hallucinations that are causing her to do things like take her very sharp tweezers and pick at her arms until their littered with dozens of little wounds. I don't see how she's unable to handle any of her own money and she's had to surrender her checkbook and her ATM card to my sister along with her car keys. I'm not on the front lines and so I only get a fraction of how bad things really are.

And then one of the talks that I knew was inevitable but I was hoping to avoid as long as possible came up. My sister said "You have to make your own decision based upon your own responsibilites and your own priorities and how you feel about these things but if it's important to you to be with Mother while she's still able to be who you think she is, you need to think about coming home soon for a visit.


I'd thought about planning to come home for a visit next spring. Maybe April, 2007. I just feel better when I can take my time planning things for my absence. And I need to arrange for my MIL to steer the ship (sorry...had to slip one more cliche in) while I'm gone. Even that's becoming more difficult because taking care of my husband is physically demanding and at the age of 72, it's a bit more than she can handle solo. Now I have to consider perhaps moving things up to this fall - say, October. It's a bit more of a rush for me but I don't want to wait too long. Or would spring be too long after all? Do I roll the dice and hope that in the next eight or nine months my mother won't have slipped down so far that she's no longer the woman I remember or does it even matter? What if I did wait and she did get drastically worse in that time? Can it still be considered a wasted trip anyway or is seeing her at all in any condition good enough? I'm not even sure how I feel about it.

I have to consider who's going to keep B going while I'm gone. Do I rely on just my MIL with selected friends pitching in when things get beyond her strength or do I hire a professional? B did some research and found some agencies that offer nurses from Poland or the Czech Republic that will come stay in your home for 24 hour care with a price ranging from 1000 to 2000€ per month (German nurses would run me about 5000€). I likely wouldn't be gone for more than two weeks so it wouldn't be as expensive but still and all, a stranger caring for B? Can I put my worries aside for that? My MIL would be here, of course, to supervise but it would seem so strange. Then again, what are my other options?

I hate this. I hate having to make these decisions and having to rely on others to take up the slack while I'm gone. I don't like things being out of sorts. I want to crawl up on the sofa and curl up in the corner and pretend that I don't have to feel pulled in different directions. I don't want to make the wrong decision. If I don't go, will I regret not seeing my mother one more time? If I go in the spring, am I going to be able to handle it if I've waited too long? And what if the person I hire hurts B? Is that really going to happen or am I just borrowing trouble?

I can't just do nothing. I believe it really would haunt me if I didn't go see my mother one more time. Time isn't on my side in any of this. I'm even approaching the time when I won't be able to travel at all because once my MIL is too old to aid in caring for B at all, that's it. I really don't know if I could leave him alone without her watchful eye on him.

I'm in need of some clarity in all this. Some quiet time for me to digest this all and to make some decisions without letting the worrisome, childish part of me taking over.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Meme Edition

It's a meme. It's a Friday Shuffle. It's two treats in one!

Swiped from Poppy and Kara. They swiped it from DiatribeR. Feel free to swipe from me if you wish.

Rules, rules, rules. Here are the rules. We're very color-within-the-lines 'round these parts.

Step 1: Get your playlist together, put it on random, and play.

Step 2: Write down the first line from the first 10 songs that play or close to it.

Step 3: Post and let everyone you know guess what song the lines come from.

Step 4: Cross out the songs (or similar) when someone guesses correctly.

1. Leavin home, out on the road - "Jet Airliner", Steve Miller Band, guessed by thatfarmgirl

2. I been run down, I been lied to - "Whipping Post", Allman Brothers Band, guessed by Holley

3. There's an angel on the stairs, as if you'd even care - "King of New Orleans, Better Than Ezra, guessed by Kara

4. Don't have to humble yourself to me - "Thing Called Love", Bonnie Raitt, guessed by Robin (and the right one, too!)

5. Down and down she goes - "Miss Amanda Jones", Rolling Stones, guessed by The Duchess Divine

6. I walked across an empty land - "Somewhere Only We Know", Keane, guessed by Kara

7. I don't want to be a bother too much - "Wig-Wam Bam", The Donnas, guessed by Michelle

8. Woman, you don’t know me, but you can bet that I know you - "Family Tree", Loretta Lynn, guessed by Holley

9. Everytime that I look in the mirror - "Dream On", Aerosmith, guessed by Holley

10. Baby, you've been going to crazy - "Sing", Travis, guessed by Kara

Make your guesses and put 'em in the comments.

Hope y'all have a weekend where all your answers are right.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Lazy Thursday Haiku Blogging

Because I can't handle things like complete sentences and paragraphs today.

Pill worked on Bonnie
See vet without vicious bites
Maybe wasted time

Muzzled, no drama
Up on table, look at foot
No sliver is found

Why limp and lift paw?
Maybe sprained doggy ankle
Doggies have ankles?

Give pain pills each day
Five in all, dip in butter
She slurps them right down.

Restart second sock
On heel flap I've dropped a stitch
Not found till too late.

Try to rip back rows
Not my talent, mess is made
Take sock to frog pond.

Humid weather stays
All are bathed in sheen of sweat
Deos hit limit.

Trip to cafe helps
Sit with B, no beer for him
Can't drink, drive wheelchair.

Drunk hobo walks by
Says to B he's a good man
Weirdos all love B.

Back home and sleepy
Much too tired to cook meal
Food delivery!

Schnitzel! Broccoli!
Send them with fries on the side
Big tip to driver.

Dixie makes promise
Full paragraphs tomorrow
It's day to shuffle!

You're excused now from counting syllables on your fingers.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Drama Dog

I love my dog. A lot. Please believe me when I say that I just adore Bonnie.

When people start a topic by claiming how much they love someone/something, you can pretty well bet that it'll be followed by some sort of complaint about the object of their sincere affection.

There will be no exceptions here.

Remember this?

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

That was taken about five weeks ago when Bonnie stepped in some glass and got a sliver lodged in her paw. And she seems to have done it again.

Bonnie is a shared dog. She was originally mine but when my MIL's dog died she started keeping Bonnie with her at night so she wouldn't be so lonesome. My MIL, not Bonnie. Bonnie never acts lonesome. Anyway, last night my MIL called to report that Bonnie was limping after their last evening walk and she seems to have something in her paw again. Not that Bonnie would ever let you confirm this. Bonnie has always been suspicious of anyone trying to do anything to her with the exception of petting her and snapping a leash on her collar. Want pick that tick off her that you found while stroking her head? Forget it. Want to flea comb her? Forget it. Want to grab that bit of pine sap that somehow got stuck to her muzzle? Forget it. Want to put some simple anti-tick drops on her neck? Forget it. Each of these is greeted with a snarled lip and if you don't back off fast enough, she just may try an actual bite. If you wish to accomplish any of these things, it must be done by surprise attack.

I can sort of understand this reaction in Bonnie. When Bonnie was a puppy some jerk cut off her tail so that it's just a small stub. Tail docking and ear clipping isn't done in Germany by vets so if it's done, it was a homemade job and whoever did this to Bonnie docked her tail much too close to her body and likely without any sort of anesthetic. In turn she's suspicious of any sort of activity that may result in her missing more body parts and in Bonnie's world, even getting a bath may result in missing body parts. Of course if given the opportunity Bonnie would rather make it you that draws back a nub instead of her.

So my hearing that Bonnie needed another trip to the vet wasn't greeting with shouts of joy. It's always a tragedy in two acts and I had a feeling that today's vet visit would be no exception.


Getting Bonnie into the car is easy. Getting Bonnie out of the car is easier because it's hot and my car is like a blue oven on wheels. Getting Bonnie down the street goes fine but once we approach the vet's office she's put two and two together. Let the balking begin!

Upon opening the door I'm greeting with the sight of a stuffed full waiting room, due to the fact that on Wednesdays the vet is open only from 3pm to 7pm, and it's full of very large dogs. Bonnie isn't that fond of other dogs. She loves all people (except for those who are trying to do something other than pet her) but dogs can be sort of hit-and-miss. Luckily Bonnie is so busy doing her freak out act that she doesn't really register that some of these dogs look like they should have saddles and could gulp her down in one bite. Mmmmm! Terrier! Even tastier than Bagle Bites!

I corral Bonnie to the corner while my MIL tells the receptionist that their dream patient has arrived. In the meantime Bonnie is trying to simultaniously bolt for the door, hide under my legs and crawl into my lap. Sound impossible? I thought it was too until I became my dog's personal jungle gym. She's whining and panting - a sort of wincing, throaty sound that makes my skin crawl and, judging by the looks of the other pet owners, theirs too - and I have a feeling that since we're in a crowded waiting room we're here for the long haul.


There's a certain advantage of having your dog known to the animal hospital as the biggest jackass in town. When they catch our name on the waiting list we get bumped up so as to get Bonnie the hell out of there as soon as possible before she causes actual structural damage to the building with her whining and writhing.

Bonnie wants to bolt through a door but the door being opened to us wasn't the one she had in mind. She weighs only twelve kilos but when you have to drag her down a short hallway, she may as well weigh twelve hundred. We enter and the vet seeing her says "She's back again? So soon? I mean, how can we help Bonnie today?".

My MIL explains that Bonnie seems to have something in her paw again, the same one as last time and the vet says "Poor thing!". I not quite sure if she means Bonnie or herself but I wouldn't be in the least bit insulted or surprised if she means the latter. The vet's assistant comes in with a muzzle and I merely say "Good luck!". If putting Bonnie in a muzzle were in the least bit easy, she'd come in wearing one already.

The vet assistant attempts to muzzle Bon and is greeted with a snarl and the quickest jaws in Germany. My MIL attempts to hold Bonnie still between her legs while the vet tries to lasso Bonnie's snout in a rag so the muzzle can be put on and is rewarded with a snap under her thumb. No skin is broken by my MIL's hand is now slightly bruised for her efforts. Another assistant who is supposed to be quite good at muzzling comes in and upon seeing Bonnie says "No. She beats even me down.".

My MIL asks if they can sedate Bonnie but the vet vetos the idea by saying "If I could get that close to her without her freaking out I could just grab whatever's in her paw. As it is I'm not going near her with something pointy until I can be relatively sure it's not going to end up in me by mistake.".

We come to the agreement that Bonnie is simply unable to be treated in her present state. It's too hot, she's too over stimulated by fear and by so many strange dogs and people around and likely she's probably in some pain from whatever is in her foot. On to plan B.

We're given a sedative tablet to give Bonnie in the morning an hour before we bring her in. It won't put her to sleep but should make her loopy enough that they can muzzle her and handle her in a manner that's safer to Bonnie and to them. We're also to come in at 8:30am when it's cooler outside and there won't be as many other dogs around.

The door is opened and Bonnie lunges for the outer exit with a speed I've never seen her before exhibit. For a hobbled dog, she's making tracks.

Act III will be tomorrow morning. Please - no one call for an encore, okay?

Monday, July 10, 2006

Ground Floor of a Meme

Yeah, yeah,'s are cheap and sleazy but so is the author of this particular meme, Mr. Fabulous. Actually he's a very sweet guy (back me up on this, Ginnie!) but don't let that get around too much, okay? The guy's got a rep to keep up.

Anyway, it's either this meme or y'all read about me starting the mate to the sock I finished yesterday. See? This meme's looking better all the time, isn't it? Plus how can I resist a meme that came straight from the original author? It's like getting a signed first edition.

That was a stretch, wasn't it?

Grab something to's a long one.

Meme-ology Meme


What is your salad dressing of choice?
Ranch. I feel like I should say it's some raspberry vinegarette or something but I'm not that uptown.

What is your favorite fast food restaurant?
Sonic. It's the first place I hit when I get back to my hometown.

What is your favorite sit down restaurant?
There's a catfish place near my hometown called Pat's that I love. In Germany I like a restaurant called Bötelstube.

On average, what size tip do you leave at a restaurant?
Tipping is done differently in Germany than in the US so on average I leave about 10-15%. In the US I leave 20%.

What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of it?
Yogurt. I eat it every day anyway.

Name three foods you detest above all others.
Liver. Hominy. Collard greens.

What is your favorite dish to order in a Chinese restaurant?
Chicken lo-mein.

What are your pizza toppings of choice?
Extra cheese and pepperoni. Mr. Fab and I can fight over share a pizza.

What do you like to put on your toast?
I seldom eat toast but butter would be the first choice.

What is your favorite type of gum?
I don't chew gum but I can damn well eat up a pack of Tic-Tacs before you know it.


Number of contacts in your cell phone?

I dunno. Three? The only time I ever use a cell phone is to call home.

Number of contacts in your email address book?
Twenty? I'm pretty bad at even checking my email, nevermind maintaining an address book.

What is the wallpaper on your computer?
I just reloaded Windows so right now it's that Windows meadow thingy.

What is your screensaver on your computer/
I never use a screensaver.

Are there naked pictures saved on your computer?
Nope. Does that disappoint or relieve you?

How many landline phones do you have in your home?

How many televisions are in your home?

What kitchen appliance do you use the least?

What is the format of the radio station you listen to most?
I seldom listen to the radio.

How many sex toys do you own that require batteries?
Is "require" a key word here?


What do you consider to be your best physical attribute?

My eyes.

Are you right handed or left handed?
Much to the chagrin of my left handed sister whom I sat on the left side of at the dinner table when we were growing up, I am right handed.

Have you had anything removed from your body?
My adenoids, my wisdom teeth and my ovaries. In that order.

Would you like to?
I've done my turn, thanks.

Do you prefer to read when you go to the bathroom?
I read in the bathroom regardless of the reason I'm there. I'm the master at scrubbing tile and holding a book at the same time.

Which of your five senses do you think is keenest?

When was the last time you had a cavity?
I had a root canal about 15 years ago. Isn't that like when cavities break bad?

What is the heaviest item you lift regularly?
My husband. One hundred sixty pounds of passive weight.

Have you ever been knocked unconscious?
Yes. In college I was train surfing and when I jumped off the train I rolled down a hill and knocked myself out. This is what passes for entertainment in certain parts of Arkansas.


If it were possible, would you like to know the day you're going to die?

Yes, because if it were before my husband then maybe I could arrange for someone to care for him after I'm gone.

If you could change your first name, what would you change it to?
I could change my first name if I wanted to I suppose but then there's all that damn paperwork and then letters to write and phone calls and...forget it.

How do you express your artistic side?
By leaning a little bit forward when wearing a V-neck top. Or my knitting and writing.

What color do you think you look best in?

How long do you think you could last in a medium security prison?
Do I get to take my knitting needles with me?

Have you ever swallowed a non-food item by mistake?
Mistake. Non-food. Is mistake a critical part of this question?

If we weren’t bound by society’s conventions, do you have a relative you would make a pass at?
Not a one.

How often do you go to church?
Two or three times a month.

Have you ever saved someone’s life?
I've stopped someone's bleeding after an auto accident but saving their life may be a bit of a stretch.

Has someone ever saved yours?
I can't say I've ever been that close to death.


For this last section, if you would do it for less or more money, indicate how much.

Would you walk naked for a half mile down a public street for $100,000?

I'd do it for half that amount.

Would you kiss a member of the same sex for $100?
If their breath wasn't stinky.

Would you have sex with a member of the same sex for $10,000?
No - mostly because I wouldn't have sex with anyone that wasn't my husband

Would you allow one of your little fingers to be cut off for $200,000?
Doubtful but it would make those fingerless gloves I'm thinking of knitting a lot more necessary.

Would you never blog again for $50,000?
The greedy part of me says "Yes!". The big ego part of me says "No!".

Would you pose naked in a magazine for $250,000?
Not interested in that for any amount of money.

Would you drink an entire bottle of hot sauce for $1000?
Can I just pour an entire bottle on a big plate of nachos and just eat it all?

Would you, without fear of punishment, take a human life for $1,000,000?
If it were for just money alone I would say I'd never do it. Were it to save someone I love I'd likely do it for free.

Would you shave your head and get your entire body waxed for $5,000?
You had me until you mentioned full body waxing.

Would you give up watching television for a year for $25,000?
Easily. I once went eighteen months without watching TV.

There. Done. Mr. Fab didn't do so badly for his first time, did he? It's a big meme but then again he's a big guy.

Feel free to steal at will.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Holes, Lumps and All

Here it is! My very first sock all complete! Imperfections are there, to be sure, but it's finished and all in all it wasn't that hard. The only place where I had real trouble was picking up the heel stitches and that's where the big flaws are.

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Looks huge, doesn't it? My MIL swears it's because only the top is ribbed and if I'd ribbed the whole leg it would look a lot smaller. As it is it looks like it should be hanging on a fireplace somewhere.

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But it fits Fred Flintstone's my leg just right! Very comfortable actually and that's a good thing since in reality, I dislike wearing socks.

Only took seven days and perhaps the second will go faster. I've got to get back to my lace projects still on needles and then I'm going to try another pair. And another. And another.

Yes. I have a sock knitting monkey on my back.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Friday Shuffle - Mixed Bag Edition

An up and down day here.

Up - Got the perfect parking space at the grocery story today and actually left the store without forgetting to buy anything.

Down - I was sweating like a whore in church by the time I got the car loaded up and I remembered that I forgot to buy ground beef.

Up - Mr. Fabulous had a quiz contest last week and I was one of the finalists. After answering the tie breaker question I not only won but my guess was exactly right! The prize? A $50 gift certificate to this mystickal place! Groovala!

Down - My inability to guess what in the hell my husband really meant by a remark he made to me resulted in wasting an hour of the day squabbling over what amounts to be a load of selfish crap. On both sides. I blame the humidity.

Up - I not only knitted the heel flap for the sock (easy!) but I turned it as well (easy when one has good directions!). I was so proud of myself for turning that heel that I wanted to do a dance, 'cept it was 88°F in my livingroom and I didn't need to ratchet up my heat and humidity induced crankiness.

Down - Attaching the heel to the sock? Holy smokes. It's done but I'm fairly certain that I didn't do it like I really should be done and it's pretty wonky looking. But what I'm knitting is beginning to look like an instep so I'll just research some good photos and good directions for this picking up stitches jazz for this sock's mate or I'm going to end up booking flights to see Kirsti and Sue so they can give me personal sock instruction. This all gets better with practice, right?

On with the shuffle:
  1. Come On, Let's Go - Ritchie Valens
  2. Black Water - Doobie Brothers
  3. I Knew The Bride (When She Used To Rock And Roll) - Dave Edmunds
  4. The Kids Are Alright - The Who
  5. Jessica - Allman Brothers Band
  6. I Don't Wanna Play House - Tammy Wynette
  7. Uptight (Everything's Alright) - Stevie Wonder
  8. Here Comes The Rain - The Mavericks
  9. Letter To Memphis - Pixies
  10. She's A Rebel - Green Day
I forgot I had that Pixies tune buried in my songlist. A definite up.

Just a note to my London based readers (and those that love them) - I've been thinking about y'all today and about how worried I was - how worried we all were - about you on this day last year. It's hard to believe a year has passed already but I know the memories of that day are likely sticking with you, especially today. Stay safe. Know you're loved.

Hope y'all have nothing but up this weekend.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Thursday Haiku Blogging

Summary and observations of the day done in haiku-style verse. Think of it as a bulleted list with a twist.

Muggy, sticky day
Iced in a frosting of sweat
Puffed on by the fan.

Unbearable job
Bakery lady suffers
Give my sympathy.

Man in shorty shorts
The Magnum look is over
Come out of time warp.

Visiting auntie
Gives a card and a twenty
Come back more often!

Hair is recolored
Fresh red is great but best part
Salon has A/C.

Jonesing for sandwich
Tomato and much mayo
Turns bread to pink dough.

We wait for t-storm
Wash air clean, cool down the heat
And thunder's great too.

Y'all thought I was kidding when I said I'd do Haiku Thursdays, didn' you? 'Cept Sari. Sari knows the power of haiku.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The New

So it's been nearly twenty-four hours since Germany was knocked out of the World Cup. It's time to savor the good memories and the pride we felt and look forward to the team growing and maturing and becoming even better. On with a new chapter in the story of the German national team.

And as I wrote on Monday, I gave myself a new challenge. I sometimes have the problem of staying with the familiar and easy and I forget what a thrill I get out of learning something new. I see something that I think will be a difficult challenge for me and if it's not completely necessary for me to accomplish I put it off, many times never to begin.

Last week I bought this book because I'm always wanting to learn new tips to make my knitting better. I haven't yet read it cover to cover (the chapter on sweaters may be fabulous but I am not interested in knitting a sweater right now - mostly because I dislike to wear them) but the chapter on socks caught me. It's actually the reason I bought the book. Anyone who has read my previous posts on knitting knows I whine over not being able to knit socks. Virtually all of my friends who knit knit socks and love knitting them and I was beginning to convince myself that I'd never be able to join their ranks. Knitting with double pointed needles intimidated me. It seemed too complicated and while I know that you still just knit with two needles at a time, the other needles don't just disappear when you're not using them. Holding a bunch of pointy metal spikes seemed beyond my skill and coordination. Friends suggested knitting socks on two circular needles and while I imagine it's easier, I never really understood the directions so I never started.

So while out walking on Monday I thought "Little children who can barely read have learned to knit socks. Why are you afraid to try this? What's the worst that can happen? Bodily injury? Death? Just get some needles and sock yarn and try it. The worst that will happen is that you really never get it and you give up. You'll be no worse off for the experience.".

So I walked into Karstadt, picked out some sock yarn that I thought would be pretty, picked up a package of 3mm double pointed needles and went home. I'd been reading and re-reading the tips in the book about knitting socks and I thought that the best thing to do is not get ahead of myself. Cast on at at least figure out how to knit with this handful of sticks.

Being impatient I didn't bother swatching. I figured that my first sock would probably suck anyway and I'd frog it so why not just practice and then if I get it, do it again properly. I cast on and divided my stitches among three needles and started.

The first round was awful. Awkward and frustrating. About that time my MIL walked in and I told her what I was up doing. She's not a fan of knitting socks - she's more of a sweater person - but she suggested that I use all five needles because she finds a square to be easier to handle than a triangle. I'd messed up by then anyway so I cast on again and divided my stitches onto four needles and after the terrible first round things really did get better. There were still moments where it felt like I had too much going on in my hands but I soon got the hang of being able to hold it all without dropping anything or stabbing a hole in my palm.

And here are the results as of this afternoon:

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The cuff is finished and as of right now I'm about an inch away from having the leg finished. It's just a simple, straightforward sock - no lace, no scallops, no patterned stitches - and so far I have to say I'm enjoying it very much. It's likely not nearly the quality an experienced sock knitter can accomplish but so far there don't seem to be any really glaring errors. I did make one error - I've knit so much lace lately that I did a yarn over without thinking about it and didn't notice it until I was back to that needle - so I decreased a stitch in the middle of that row and all seems to be okay.

Of course knitting the leg of a sock doesn't get me home free. There are still a lot more complex things I'm going to have to do before I can say I've knitted a sock. I still have to knit the heel flap and then - gasp! - I have to turn the heel. I've read and reread the directions and so far I call myself understanding them but putting the knowledge to a practical test will be the only way I'll know for sure. I've never knit anything where I have to pick up stitches - never even did it for practice - and so I reckon I'll be learning on the fly. Same with grafting the toe. Never tried the Kitchener stitch but there are lots of websites that give directions and photos and I'll make good use of them when it's time to close the toe.

And of all goes well, I get to do it again.

Okay, here's the paragraph where you non-knitters can tune out if you wish.

I do have a little concern. I'm doing this sock on four needles and the directions I have are for three but is that a big deal? The directions for the heel flap tell me to put half the stitches on one needle - can I keep them on two and just knit back and forth on the two needles to make the flap? And when it's time to turn the heel, is this going to be a problem because I'm not quite getting what I should do if my heel flap is on two needles? Should I make the heel on one needle, turn the heel and then finish the foot on three needles or even divide the stitches back on to four? If anyone has any suggestions or directions, let me know - email me if you want.

I have a feeling that if I can really do this - really knit a sock - then I'm going to be one of those obsessed sock knitters. There's not always a great choice of yarn available for me here but there always seems to be lots of really pretty sock yarns. And somehow I don't feel so bad bringing home a couple skeins of sock yarn for a project instead of ten skeins for something big.

If I'm going to have a new challege, it's a plus if it's an inexpensive one.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006


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I'm heartbroken. I really thought Germany could go all the way this time and they nearly did it. They were that close. It simply hurts to see a team that wanted it so much have it slip from their hands.

But they did something even better than win a trophy. They gave millions a feeling of optimism and pride. They showed us how to work together and to keep trying even when things aren't going well and the critics complain. They showed how to believe in yourself.

Thanks, guys. I'm so proud of you.

Monday, July 03, 2006

The New Begins Today

There are times when B needs to wake me up during the night. I will admit that sometimes it irks me no end but most of the time I'm so sleepy I barely register what's going on. I take care of whatever he needs, crawl back into bed and am asleep again before I realize I've been upright.

This morning, however, he woke me up at a rather unfortunate time. I had twenty minutes left before the alarm clock rang but he didn't really have any idea what time I had the alarm set for and he needed to use the bathroom pretty bad.

Twenty minutes! Losing twenty minutes of sleep big for me. I don't sleep all that much anyway so twenty minutes is...well I don't know what percentage of my night's sleep it is but it's a chunk. A chunk I didn't want to lose. Being awakened an a hour before the alarm is one thing - I can get back to a dream in that time - but you can't do anything with twenty minutes but stay up and grumble.

I think B felt a little bad about him waking me up twenty minutes early so this afternoon he suggested that I put aside anything I needed to do around the house and get out for a while.

"Go shopping! See if you can find some new tops!"

So I went. I didn't actually need any new summer tops but I won't say that I didn't want some, especially since some of my t-shirts are getting that suitable-to-wear-while-washing-the-car look. The boutique I went to was like summer t-shirt heaven. My favorite styles (I favor V-necks but will take scoop necks if I like the shirt otherwise), good colors, decent prices. I settled on three - white, pale pink and a pale orange - considered buying a linen A-line dress but decided against it when I realized that, due to my stumpy legs, the hem would literally scrape the ground and the side patch pockets hang somewhere around my knees, paid and scooted on out of there.

There was still plenty of time before I needed to get back home. What next to do? Getting some ice cream was the natural answer but I wasn't particularly hungry and I need to take advantage of not being hungry as much as I can. I walked away from the mall up the street towards my apartment and nothing was catching my interest. I strolled along slowly, even sitting on a bench for a moment to keep from getting in the way of the others on the street who were walking with an actual purpose in mind and thought that what I really needed to do was something different. I needed to do something I've wanted to do and have been putting off. I needed a new challenge...and I knew right where to start.

So I made one more stop before I finished my walk back home. I arrived, showed B my new summer tops (just to assuage any guilt he may have still been harboring for waking me up early) and began my new challenge.

And with some luck and a little patience on my part, I'll tell you about it tomorrow. Maybe even have a picture.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Meme for a Sunday

While I've been trying to back away from memes, it goes almost without saying that if it's a meme involving music or books, I'm not going to be able to resist it. My pal, Katya, who has a blog that talks about music and books is who I stole it from but it originated here. Ever wanted to know who Person Zero was when it came to a meme? Now you know.

Here are the rules as Bookhart wrote them:

The idea behind the blog is that it's about music, and that you can put up to three answers to any question. But no more. One answer is OK, two answers is OK, three answers is OK. Four is not OK, and five is right out. Unless otherwise indicated, you can only choose songs, and be specific--putting "anything by Madonna" doesn't count.


Song(s) That I Loathe to the Core of My Being
What's Up - 4 Non Blondes
My Heart Will Go On - Celine Dion
You're Beautiful - James Blunt

Musical Artist(s) That I Loathe to the Core of My Being
Mariah Carey
Whitney Houston
Norah Jones

Rolling Stones Song(s) I Love*
She's A Rainbow
Paint It Black
Waiting on a Friend

Beatles Song(s) I Love*
A Day In The Life
I'll Follow The Sun
If I Fell

Who Song(s) I Love*
Won't Get Fooled Again
Getting In Tune
Squeeze Box

Reggae Song(s) I Love
Hey Sexy Lady - Shaggy
No Woman, No Cry - Bob Marley
Rivers Of Babylon - Boney M

Country Song(s) I Love**
Ring Of Fire - Johnny Cash
Country Sunshine - Dottie West
Sweet Dreams - Patsy Cline

Movie Soundtrack(s) I Love
Pulp Fiction
Almost Famous
About A Boy

Musical Sountrack(s) I Love
Sweeney Todd

Cover Song(s) I Love
Lay, Lady, Lay - The Everly Brothers (orig. Bob Dylan)
Stand By Me - John Lennon (orig. Ben E. King)
Love Rollercoaster - Red Hot Chili Peppers (orig. Ohio Players)

Contemporary Top-40 Artist(s) I Secretly Love
Ronan Keating
Robbie Williams

Song(s) That Bring Me to Tears
All I Want Is You - U2
Everybody Hurts - REM
Crazy Love - Van Morrison

Song(s) That Make Me Shake My Ass
Love Rollercoaster - Red Hot Chili Peppers (Yes. Again.)
I Go To Rio - Peter Allen
Twist And Shout - The Beatles

Classical Composer(s) I Love

Rap/Hip-Hop Song(s) I Love
Stan - Eminem
Gin And Juice - Snoop Dogg
Mama Said Knock You Out - L L Cool J

70s Disco Song(s) I Love
Get Dancin' - Disco Tex and the Sex-O-Lettes
The Hustle - Van McCoy
Get Down Tonight - KC and the Sunshine Band

70s Supergroup Song(s) I Love
Walk This Way - Aerosmith
Cold As Ice - Foreigner
Roll With The Changes - REO Speedwagon

Metal Song(s) I Love
Smoke On The Water - Deep Purple
One - Metallica
(Don't) Fear The Reaper - Blue Öyster Cult

New Wave Song(s) I Love
There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) - Eurythmics
Once In A Lifetime - Talking Heads
Turning Japanese - The Vapors

Soul/R&B Song(s) I Love
Chain Of Fools - Aretha Franklin
This Old Heart Of Mine - Isley Brothers
Ain't Too Proud To Beg - The Temptations

Power Ballad(s) I Love
Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad - Meat Loaf
Keep On Loving You - REO Speedwagon
High Enough - Damn Yankees

Pre 1950s Song(s) I Love
Tuxedo Junction - Glenn Miller Orchestra
How High The Moon - Ella Fitzgerald
Accentuate the Positive- Bing Crosby

Punk Song(s) I Love
London Calling - The Clash
My Way - Sex Pistols
Love Comes In Spurts - Richard Hell

Singer/Songwriter Song(s) I Love
I Couldn't Leave You If I Tried - Rodney Crowell
Once In A Very Blue Moon - Nanci Griffith
Passionate Kisses - Mary-Chapin Carpenter

MTV Video(s) I Love***
Paradise City - Guns 'n Roses
Every Breath You Take - The Police
I Want Love - Elton John

Song(s) To Have Sex To
Do Me Baby - Prince
Tupelo Honey - Van Morrison
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face - Roberta Flack

None Of The Above Song(s) I Love
All Because Of You - Blackmore's Night
Badlands - Bruce Springsteen
Come On Eileen - Dexy's Midnight Runners

* - One of my favorite bands ever. These are just three of the dozens of songs of theirs that I love.

** - There are hundreds of country songs I love. I picked three classics that I have loved nearly my whole life.

*** - These would be three that I can distinctly remember. I haven't actually watched MTV in years.