Dixie Peach: September 2007

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Friday Shuffle - Rutted Edition

Are you technically in a rut if you simply don't have time to get anything else done but the rut-like activities in which you're currently engaged? And does it matter?

I take care of my husband. I shop. I clean. I cook. I go back to cleaning. I continue to be buried under a mountain of dirty laundry and cardboard. The cardboard I'll eventually rid myself of by hauling it down the street to the old paper recycling bin but the laundry? Well I suppose that problem could be solved by me hauling my dirty clothes to the old clothes collection bin but that leaves me without panties and I simply can't go visit my mother without panties.

And while I'm on the subject of hauling things out of here, may I make one simple request? Could it possibly stop raining long enough for me to get all this cardboard hauled out of here? I'm running out of room in the apartment and it seems to be a bad idea to cart around cardboard in the pouring rain.

You're wondering why I have so much cardboard, right? I mean one family couldn't have so many cardboard boxes, could they? Oh ho! They certainly could if they never threw any out over the course of the year. I have a spare room that tends to be used as a storage area. I get medical supplies for B in these big ass cardboard boxes that are stored in that room that no one but me goes into. They get emptied and if I don't cut them up and throw them out right away, they build up. Add to that the zillion things we order online - books, CDs, clothes, electronics, shoes, etc. - and the packages family and friends send me. Those empty boxes tend to get thrown in the empty medical supply boxes. And all this cardboard in their pressed paper condos get all friendly with one another and they get fruitful and multiply and I end up with the China of the empty carton world.

May as well shuffle while I have time. Then it's back to the cardboard torture chamber before my box cutter cools off.
  1. Phantom Limb - The Shins
  2. Big Girl (You Are Beautiful) - Mika
  3. Tempted - Squeeze
  4. Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth) - George Harrison
  5. Try A Little Tenderness - Otis Redding
  6. You Didn't Have To Be So Nice - Lovin' Spoonful
  7. Elvis Is Everywhere - Mojo Nixon
  8. Mayor Of Simpleton - XTC
  9. Jump Jive An' Wail - Brian Setzer Orchestra
  10. Love Is Only A Feeling - The Darkness
Happy weekend, folks!


Thursday, September 27, 2007

Super Sonic Dots

Just blowing in here to get you updated and then back out to prep for my trip. Less than two weeks, peeps! Two weeks from right this minute I'll be in Mississippi doing...I dunno. Something that involves spending money, I'm sure.
  • Speaking of money, I went to the bank today to get money exchanged since I hate fooling around with it at the airport. I had called our personal banker last week to ask him what he thought would be the easiest thing for me to do and he said "Well if you come up to my branch we won't have enough on hand for you but if you go down to the branch on the market square they will.". So last Thursday I went by there and when I asked for [insert amount here that probably wouldn't be prudent to reveal on the Internet] American dollars the woman in the little glassed off booth acted as if I'd asked her for the crown jewels. "We don't have that much on hand! I'll have to order it!", she told me. I said that was fine and asked her when I should return. She asked me when I wanted to return and I said "Well...I dunno. Tomorrow?". She curtly replied that tomorrow was too soon and I said "Well when will you have it?" She asked me "Well when do you want it?". I told her that I'd want it when she'd have it. Finally I said "Look, I don't leave for three weeks. When can you get me the money.". Frau Sourpuss replied that it would be there Tuesday or Wednesday and I said I'd be back on Wednesday. And of course on Wednesday it wasn't there. Frau Sourpuss gave me her phone number so I could call and check if the money was delivered and when I called today she informed me that it was. Forty-five minutes later I arrived, she acted as if she'd never seen me before, never mind that I'd been there the day before and had just spoken with her on the phone. *sigh* Okay, no problem - let me just ask you once again for my freaking American dollars. She got the money - it was set aside for me with a note attached with my account number - and for some reason she didn't want to see any identification from me. In all our encounters she never looked at my ID. So much for security.

    When I ordered the money she asked me what sort of bills I wanted. I asked for $500 in hundreds because that's money I'm giving to my sister for my mother's bills. I asked for $200 in fifties and for the rest to be in twenties and tens. And still Frau Sourpuss gave me $200 in fives. Fives! Didn't you order money in the denominations for which I asked? Did I ask for fives?

    I reckon I'm all set if I happen to go to the Bada Bing! while on this trip.

  • B and I went to the dentist yesterday - him to get his fillings and for me to get a cleaning and check-up. Weirdly enough my insurance chip card didn't work - it kept coming up with B's information and none of my own. The dental assistant kept the cards though, called the insurance company this morning to explain the problem and arranged for them to send me a new chip card. Talk about service. B and I now are deeply in love with our dentist office. Kiss us, dental practice - our teeth are clean!

  • You can tell me - I promise not to get angry. Y'all are throwing your cardboard boxes in my apartment while I'm sleeping, right? You can confess it now. I truly hope that's the reason because else I can't figure out how I can spend hours hacking up cardboard boxes to be thrown in the recycler and I never get to the end.

    Of course me having stuff delivered all the time could be the problem as well.

  • There may be something wrong with me. I'm spending more thought on what knitting stuff I'll be taking with me than what clothes.

  • We got the bill from our rental company where we settle up for the year. I pay rent based on the apartment itself and with it is the cost for the heat I use, hot and cold water consumption, trash pick-up, cost for the building superintendent, street cleaning, building cleaning, etc. If what I paid in rent in the past year is more than my costs, I get money back. If what I paid in rent doesn't cover the costs I have to settle up and my rent goes up to reflect what my higher costs are.

    Holy smokes, I have to cough up 580€ to settle up and my rent is going up by 40€ per month. That is an unreal amount considering in my old apartment, owned by the same company, my costs never rose that much in one year. I know utilities and trash pick up and so on are more expensive this year but my bill shows me using cold water at the rate a six member family would. I believe someone screwed up when the water meters were changed this year and we need to get to the bottom of this. Nice project for B and his mom to work on while I'm gone. And if this bill is right, I won't be taking a vacation again any time soon. Like for the next twenty-five years.
Come back tomorrow - we'll be shuffling. Wear your dancing shoes.


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Daily Grind

I feel as though I owe y'all an apology. Very little has been going on here that's of much interest in reporting back to y'all. My days consist of getting this apartment cleaned and organized and getting the last minute bit of knitting that needs to be completed before I leave for the US. I leave in two weeks and I'm under the gun.

Holy smokes. I leave in two weeks? It's that soon? Why didn't y'all warn me I was getting that close?

I need to step up my efforts or I'm going to end up sleepless right before I leave town as I pack and finishing getting things in order.

Keep checking back though. Surely something of interest will happen in the next two weeks. Getting the laundry caught up alone will be an event of monumental proportions.


Sunday, September 23, 2007

Linky Love

Marsha and I have been reading each other's blogs for...what? A year and a half? Two years? I can't really remember because I've read so much about her family and her life that it seems like I've always known her. Funny how blogs - any steady online connection, really - can forge such lovely friendships.

Anyway, Marsha has nominated me for a little award:

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Marsha likes how I write and in turn I want to reward and give a little linky love to some folks I read regularly and who have recently written stuff that I dug the mostest. My Blogroll is full of great people who write fun, interesting, amusing, thought provoking blogs and I urge you to not just check out these folks listed here but the others on my Blogroll.

~ You knew Poppy would make the list, didn't you? Well Poppy is a good friend of mine. And Poppy does write in a way that combines the most frustrating parts of life with the most joyous and liberally sprinkles in the humor. And this recent post she wrote about seeing Wilco in concert is classic Poppy. I know the connection she has with music and this post made me feel it for myself.

~ The Muslim world is currently celebrating Ramadan and UmmFarouq has written a blog entry about fasting during Ramadan and its effect on her spirituality. It was a pleasure for me to read and I told her so. Another thing I love about blogging is the ability to hear voices of those we may not normally come across, be they people living far from us or people who have a culture that doesn't normally come into contact with our own, and we learn about how they see the world. Differing cultures don't seem so strange when we know those who live in those cultures.

~ Know what I love about Lisa? She's a work in progress. She's not afraid to say she's striving to be a better person and her honesty, I believe, helps her readers to want to become better as well. She can also tell a very funny story as this blog entry can attest.

~ This is why I wish I lived next door to Belinda. The conversations in her home between her and her husband or her and her daughter or all three together break me up no end.

~ Carol love to take pictures and her blog always has plenty of them. Pictures of her home, her pets, her unbelievably gorgeous children - she's always got great stuff to see. Currently Carol is visiting Germany right now and if this doesn't make you want to hop on a plane to Germany, likely nothing will.

~ The Big Finn has a life that many would envy. He lives in Switzerland, he travels a lot, he has an amazing ability to find the best food and beverages no matter where he goes (or at least he makes it look like he knows what he's doing) and in general thoroughly enjoys his life. This post is proof that he's been living in Europe for quite a few years. Europeans walking to get somewhere? Completely normal. In America? Who's the freak with the doughnut out there?

These are some very recent posts that I particularly enjoyed but I enjoy all of the folks that are on my regular blog reading list. Give them a visit and get to know some other enjoyable writers.

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Friday, September 21, 2007

Friday Shuffle - Bare Bones Edition

Since yesterday's entry - it being a meme being no excuse - was as long as my arm, I'll give your scroll wheel finger a break today. It's been fairly uneventful around here anyway. I'm behind on my cleaning, behind on my knitting and the highlight of my week was taking my car to have two tires replaced, getting new wiper blades, getting the oil changed and having the safety and emissions inspections done. Oh - and I had it detailed as well.

My back seat no longer looks like a terrier exploded in it.

On to the music. Time to shuffle!
  1. Stuck In The Middle With You - Stealer's Wheel
  2. Closer - Nine Inch Nails
  3. Take Me Out - Franz Ferdinand
  4. Crying, Waiting, Hoping - Buddy Holly
  5. I Don't Wanna Play House - Tammy Wynette
  6. Badlands - Bruce Springsteen
  7. Second Hand News - Fleetwood Mac
  8. Levon - Elton John
  9. Way Out - Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  10. Big Star - The Jayhawks
Dig on your weekends, y'all!


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

You Are Absolutely Going to Kick my Butt for Doing This


1. I got it from Lisa. And I adore Lisa!
2. Hilda digs memes. This one will probably leave her as giddy as if I gave her a day off from work, a new purse and a Cuban sandwich.

Here's a list of 239 films. Supposedly if you've seen more than 85 of them you probably have no life. I'm thinking that if you've seen less than 85 of them you probably haven't been inside a movie theater since before Nixon was president and you refer to the television as the "boob tube". Or you're my mother.

Here we go. Assorted comments by me in italics.

(x) Rocky Horror Picture Show Seen it a frightening number of times...and paid for the priviledge.
(x) Grease
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean
( ) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest
( ) Boondock Saints
(x) Fight Club
(x) Starsky and Hutch
(x) Neverending Story Jeez, I hate that stupid flying dog. And that whispery fairy girl.
(x) Blazing Saddles May be one of the funniest movies I've ever seen.
(x) Airplane
total = 7

(x) The Princess Bride
(x) AnchorMan Saw it twice on the same US to Europe flight.
(x) Napoleon Dynamite
(x) Labyrinth
(x) Saw Gory, but good.
(x) Saw II Just gory.
(x) White Noise
(x) White Oleander Book was better.
(x) Anger Management
total = 9

(x) 50 First Dates
(x) The Princess Diaries
(x) The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement They should have stopped with the first one.
(x) Scream
(x) Scream 2
(x) Scream 3
(x) Scary Movie
(x) Scary Movie 2
(x) Scary Movie 3
total = 9

( ) Scary Movie 4
(x) American Pie
(x) American Pie 2
(x) American Wedding
( ) American Pie Band Camp Even I know when to quit.
(x) Harry Potter 1
(x) Harry Potter 2
(x) Harry Potter 3
(x) Harry Potter 4
total = 7

( ) Resident Evil 1
( ) Resident Evil 2
(x) The Wedding Singer
(x) Little Black Book
(x) The Village
( ) Lilo & Stitch
(x) Finding Nemo
(x) Finding Neverland I know this movie was supposed to be so great but it bored me to tears.
(x) Signs
(x) The Grinch Complete crap.
total = 7

(x) Texas Chainsaw Massacre Both the original and the remake.
( ) Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning
( ) White Chicks I will never be bored enough to watch this. I'd read a Nicholas Sparks book first.
(x) Butterfly Effect
( ) 13 Going on 30 I watched the first 30 minutes and then I switched the channel to see if I could find White Chicks on TV.
(x) I, Robot
(x) Robots
(x) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
( ) Universal Soldier
(x) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
total = 6

(x) Along Came Polly
(x) Deep Impact
( ) KingPin
(x) Never Been Kissed
(x) Meet The Parents
(x) Meet the Fockers
( ) Eight Crazy Nights
(x) Joe Dirt I'll admit it - I find this movie to be hilarious.
(x) King Kong
( ) A Cinderella Story
total = 7

(x) The Terminal
(x) The Lizzie McGuire Movie Proof that I will watch almost anything if it's on my TV in English.
( ) Passport to Paris
(x) Dumb & Dumber
( ) Dumber & Dumberer
(x) Final Destination
(x) Final Destination 2
(x) Final Destination 3
(x) Halloween
(x) The Ring
total = 8

(x) The Ring 2
(x) Surviving X-MAS
( ) Flubber
( ) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
(x) Practical Magic
(x) Chicago I could watch this weekly.
(x) Ghost Ship
(x) From Hell
( ) Hellboy
(x) Secret Window
total = 7

(x) I Am Sam And I cried and cried!
(x) The Whole Nine Yards
( ) The Whole Ten Yards
(x) The Day After Tomorrow
(x) Child’s Play
( ) Seed of Chucky
(x) Bride of Chucky
(x) Ten Things I Hate About You
(x) Just Married
(x) Gothika
total = 8

(x) Nightmare on Elm Street
(x) Sixteen Candles Perhaps the most quotable movie ever.
(x) Remember the Titans
( ) Coach Carter
(x) The Grudge
( ) The Grudge 2
(x) The Mask
( ) Son Of The Mask
( ) Bad Boys
( ) Bad Boys 2
total = 5

( ) Joy Ride
( ) Lucky Number Slevin
(x) Ocean’s Eleven
( ) Ocean’s Twelve
(x) Bourne Identity
(x) Bourne Supremacy
(x) Lone Star I love John Sayles movies.
(x) Bedazzled The original is great. The remake is crap.
(x) Predator I
( ) Predator II
total = 6

(x) The Fog
(x) Ice Age
( ) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
( ) Curious George
(x) Independence Day
(x) Cujo
(x) A Bronx Tale
( ) Darkness Falls
(x) Christine
(x) ET
total = 7

(x) Children of the Corn
( ) My Boss's Daughter
(x) Maid in Manhattan
(x) War of the Worlds
( ) Rush Hour
( ) Rush Hour 2
( ) Best Bet
(x) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
( ) She’s All That
(x) Calendar Girls
total = 5

(x) Sideways I hated this movie. I have never wanted to slap two characters more in my entire life than those two pissant guys.
(x) Mars Attacks
( ) Event Horizon
(x) Ever After
(x) Wizard of Oz
(x) Forrest Gump
(x) Big Trouble in Little China
(x) The Terminator
(x) The Terminator 2
(x) The Terminator 3
total = 9

(x) X-Men
(x) X-2
( ) X-3
(x) Spider-Man
(x) Spider-Man 2
(x) Sky High
(x) Jeepers Creepers
( ) Jeepers Creepers 2
(x) Catch Me If You Can
(x) The Little Mermaid
total = 8

(x) Freaky Friday
(x) Reign of Fire
(x) The Skulls
(x) Cruel Intentions
( ) Cruel Intentions 2
(x) The Hot Chick B loves Rob Schneider. He thinks he's the greatest actor ever. Don't ask.
(x) Shrek
(x) Shrek 2
( ) Swimfan
(x) Miracle on 34th street
total = 8

(x) Old School
(x) The Notebook I blame my being on an airplane for having sat through this maudlin crap. And the weren't showing White Chicks on the flight.
(x) K-Pax
(x) Krippendorf’s Tribe
( ) A Walk to Remember I won't count this even though I watched over half of this boring crap.
(x) Ice Castles
( ) Boogeyman
(x) The 40-year-old Virgin
(x) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
(x) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
total = 8

(x) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(x) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(x) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(x) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
( ) Basketball Do they mean BASEketball? I've seen BASEketball.
( ) Hostel
(x) Waiting for Guffman Brilliant
( ) House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
(x) Elf
(x) Highlander
total = 7...8 if you count BASEketball.

(x) Mothman Prophecies Book was interesting. Movie was disappointing.
(x) American History X
( ) Three
(x) The Jacket
(x) Kung Fu Hustle Fabulously hilarious
( ) Shaolin Soccer
(x) Nightwatch
(x) Monsters Inc.
(x) Titanic And I want those three hours of my life back.
(x) Monty Python and the Holy Grail So I can watch this twice more.
total = 8

(x) Shaun Of the Dead I love Simon Pegg!
(x) Willard
(x) High Tension I almost fainted from the gore in this movie.
( ) Club Dread
(x) Hulk
(x) Dawn Of the Dead
(x) Hook Horrible, horrible, boring, movie.
(x) Chronicles Of Narnia The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
(x) 28 days later
( ) Orgazmo
total = 8

( ) Phantasm
(x) Waterworld Which is essentially The Postman but with boats.
(x) Kill Bill vol 1
(x) Kill Bill vol 2 I love these movies.
(x) Mortal Kombat
( ) Wolf Creek
(x) Kingdom of Heaven
( ) The Hills Have Eyes I have it recorded but I haven't watched it yet.
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
total = 5

( ) The Last House on the Left
( ) Re-Animator
( ) Army of Darkness
( ) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
( ) Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
( ) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith I have these thee films recorded but haven't watched them.
(x) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope But this film I saw 25 times in 4 weeks when it was first released.
(x) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
(x) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
( ) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage Oh please!
total = 3

( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor Is this a real movie?
(x) The Matrix
(x) The Matrix Reloaded
(x) The Matrix Revolutions
( ) Animatrix
( ) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
(x) Team America: World Police Nasty and tacky and crude and funny
(x) Red Dragon
(x) Silence of the Lambs
(x) Hannibal
total = 7

Whoa. Had to break out the calculator for this. 169 movies seen. 170 if we count BASEketball. Oh hell, let's count it.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

All A-Twitter Here

I'm so, so excited! Look at what I got in the mail yesterday!

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And now you're saying "My goodness, sure are easy to please! A blessing to gift givers the world over! No diamonds or furs for you! Not when you get so fired up over two rubber caps with a piece of elastic strung between them!"

Ahhhh...but they're not just any ol' bits of rubber and elastic. These bits of rubber and plastic can do this:

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I can take a sock in progress and when I'm not working on it tuck the ends of the double pointed needles into each of the rubber caps and it's all held taut by by the elastic band. Do you know what this means? Do you have any idea what this means?

It means I can tuck my sock project into my pocket and carry it with me without the stitches falling off...and more importantly my leg won't be repeatedly pierced by the ends of the needles. I've been stabbed so many times by double pointed needles that I was considering wearing thigh pads under my clothes but my thighs look big enough already.

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Monday, September 17, 2007


I love knitting. I love parks. I really love knitting in parks so I went off yesterday for some good sit-on-a-bench-and-knit time.

The park I chose yesterday was the Herrenkrug Park hotel:

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The hotel started as an inn back in 1676 and by the early 1800s it was a popular location for outings for those in Magdeburg and the surrounding areas and for concerts. Later in the 19th century the current building was built and the surrounding park and gardens were designed.

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Here's the side veranda that goes down into the beer garden. At one time the beer garden could seat about 12,000 customers and was one of the biggest in Germany.

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And here's the rear of the hotel where the winter garden is located:

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The park itself is very large with winding paths and many, many park benches where you can sit and rest. And every bench has a trash can next to it. German efficiency and sense of order at its best! There is also a playground, miniature golf course, a regular golf course and a horse racing course.

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At the rear of the park was an arbor with benches surrounding it.

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In the center was this pillar:

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and you can see where Russians that were once stationed in Magdeburg had scratched their names or initials into it:

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Defaced pillars aside, this was a perfect spot to do a little knitting in public. However remembering to bring the camera seemed to mean I was destined to forget my knitting at home so I continued my walk along the sun dappled paths.

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And eventually I made it down to the river - actually a channel off the main part of the Elbe river.

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But what's a scenic riverside view without some sock knitting to go with it? So I made my way back to the car and back home to my sticks and string.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Friday Shuffle - The Week at a Glance Edition

It's been a red letter week 'round these parts so let's just get to it all. Bodily functions and fluids may be mentioned during the course of today's entry so please finish your sandwich or postpone your Twinkie break until you've finished reading.

~ Speaking of snack cakes, do they still have those freaky pink Hostess SnoBall things? Please tell me yes because I just love those rubbery marshmallow covered things. Have them ready for me at my arrival gate at the airport!

~ So it was a week where I spent most of it either sleeping or writhing in pain from the gut twisting whatever it was that was ailing me. I thought at first it was a gallbladder attack but as it went on I decided that it was some sort of gastrointestinal bug because instead of having searing pain on my upper right side I had searing pain on my lower left side, complete with evil gurgling sounds. Everything made me sick and in case anyone here isn't familiar with this particular situation, throwing up dry, unaided by the presence of any sort of sauce, rice is difficult and painful - to the point where it made me see stars. I also slept like it was going to be declared illegal tomorrow. Eight hours at night, two and three hour naps during the day - it was almost ridiculous. However I believe that space banking sleep may be possible because for the last two nights I've not been able to get to sleep, have slept only about 4 hours per night and still didn't need a nap during the day.

Anyway, my stomach ailment seems to be over. I've graduated from subsisting on only dry bread and beef consume to eating a chicken sandwich with tomato and mayonnaise for supper tonight. Victory!

~ I've been watching Lost in reruns and it's made me wonder - what do the women on the island do when they have their periods? Do Dharma tampons and ibuprofen come in with the rest of the supplies that get dropped from the sky?

~ My uncle, CG, died on Tuesday morning. He was married to my Aunt Cora and they'd been married nearly 59 years. They met as teenagers and except for when my uncle was in the Marines they've been together.

I remember when I was about five years old being at Aunt Cora's house. We were all going to Pickwick Dam for an outing and me being all dressed in my red swimsuit and a little terry cloth beach wrap with my hair up in a little bun. I put on Aunt Cora's black sunglasses and my uncle thought I looked so hilarious in those big black shades he started calling me a movie star and he took my dad's camera and took pictures of me in the yard posing in the sunglasses like a movie star. Every time I see those old photos they make me laugh.

CG was a good guy. I'm going to miss him.

~ Things have been a bit frosty between B and his mom over the last few days. B and I had dental appointments for Wednesday afternoon - me for a cleaning and him for some fillings - and on Tuesday we canceled the appointments and rescheduled them for two week later. I was still sick and picking B up over and over for this dental visit wasn't going to do my wonky stomach any favors. We told my MIL and she got all pissy about it and insisted that B didn't need to cancel his appointment and implied that the real reason the appointment was postponed was due to his fear of the dentist. B said told her that I wasn't up to being at the dentist and I needed to be there because I was the only one who could get his wheelchair back out of the exam room once he was put in the dental chair. This didn't seem to be an acceptable answer for my MIL and she just kept harping about this postponed appointment until B finally said "It's done. I can't change it back!". Since then when they talk on the phone they have all the same warmth between each other that a meat locker possesses.

B and his mom almost never have this sort of conflict between them. And I'm going to blame this on Gerd - just because I can. I hope this gets sorted out soon because I can't leave town with this going on.

~ As I mentioned last week, I had to go to my doctor's office on Thursday to get my quarterly blood test and get a flu shot. Dr. K told me that it was going to be just the little blood test - get a little out of my ear lobe - but when I got to the back room three tubes were out. I told the physicians assistant what Dr. K had told me and she said "Oh no. You get the big test. We checked with her to be sure.". Okay, someone's pants are on fire 'round here because I had my last big blood draw in early June but what was I going to do about it? Act like an even pissier scared baby than I already am and refuse to have the test? I faced it with a firm jaw and was rewarded with a special bandage for it. It pays to be brave. Dr. K wasn't in the office so I had to wait for the doctor that's working in her practice this year as an intern to come give me my flu shot. Flu shots are wimpy and don't even hurt so I don't fuss about them but that also means I'm not rewarded with a special pretty bandage for being extra brave. Anyway, intern doctor looks at my vaccine booklet and sees that I don't have a tetanus shot recorded and tells me I ought to have one - just in case I were injured. I don't think this woman gets that most of the time I seldom venture farther than my local bakery that's in the same building as my apartment. However, should I happen to have a mishap with rusty barbed wire in my kitchen or cleave my leg open with a hatchet as I pick up my mail or should I step on a nail while in the bathroom, I'll be sure to ask for a tetanus shot while I'm in the ER.

~ I heard James Blunt's new single 1973 twice - once as I drove to the doctor's office and once while waiting in the doctor's office and so help me I liked it.

I'm pretty sure that the real me has been replaced by a pod person. That's my only explanation.

~ I haven't knit in nearly a week. And I'm behind on my cleaning. I predict a lot of last minute frenzy knitting and cleaning before I leave down.

On to the shuffle.
  1. Open Up Your Eyes - Tonic
  2. Closing Time - Semisonic
  3. Would I Lie To You? - Eurythmics
  4. Joshua - Dolly Parton
  5. Open Wider - Bird York
  6. Authority Song - John Mellencamp
  7. All Because Of You - Blackmore's Night
  8. She Bangs The Drums - Stone Roses
  9. The Angry Mob - Kaiser Chiefs
  10. Build Me Up, Buttercup - The Foundations
Happy weekend, all.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Running Theme This Week

I was getting supper together as B watched the evening news. When I got sat down and we began to eat I said "Hey, what did they say was new in the McCann case?"

"Oh. The prosecutor wants to have the stuffed toy of Madeleine's that Mrs. McCann carries around and they want to have Mr. McCann's computer and they want Mrs. McCann's diarrhea."

There are times when you can't discount the hilarity of being married to a guy whose first language isn't English.

I'm mostly recovered from my own bout with demands on my intestinal tract. Full update of all the week's other events tomorrow. With a shuffle to boot.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007


I am so sick. Since Sunday - so sick.

I think my intestines are staging a revolt.


Friday, September 07, 2007

Friday Shuffle - Sensory Overload Edition

Tidy lists give the impression that things are organized and orderly. Today was probably anything but orderly so let's get it all ship-shape with some dots.
  • I had a massive headache all day. Woke up twice during the night, the headache dug in firmly by the time I'd awakened the second time, and so I ended up sleeping later than usual which got my whole day off on the wrong foot. But I'm the boss 'round these parts so I can make the office hours.
  • When I went out around noontime to take out the garbage I nearly passed out in the elevator. There was some sort of horrible, gassy, bleachy, ammonia-like but with a hint of terrible perfume like funky patchouli oil mixed in stench lurking in there. And heavy too. It was a stink that would have brought Jean-Baptiste Grenouille to his knees. I rode down only three floors but I was woozy by the time the elevator doors opened again. I felt like Julia Roberts in The Player. When I got outside I saw my stinky old lady neighbor - the one who normally smells like a mix of dust, mold, and stale urine - and immediately blamed her. I rode back upstairs to grab my purse and jacket since I needed to do a bit of shopping (note that I will choose asphyxiation over climbing the stairs to the third floor) and when I came back out to get in the execution chamber elevator I noticed that before the elevator door had opened the smell in the hallway was still fairly strong. Now I think it perhaps was my neighbor with the rabbits and whose apartment consequently smells like bunny pee. Like the bunny pee of eighteen bunnies. Perhaps he was cleaning up his funky bunny pee cages and used the wrong sort of cleaner. Like cyanide gas.

    Jeez, whatever happened to German apartment buildings just smelling like cooked cabbage and potatoes?

  • I'd finished my shopping and as I was walking over to the streetcar stop I could hear from the direction of the market square someone yelling. I couldn't see who it was but as I crossed the street I saw it was a large African man yelling loudly as he walked towards the street. He was carrying a small black book which I took to be a Bible but his yelling and his accent made it impossible for me to understand more than just a couple words at a time. His yelling reminded me of a street corner preacher and all I could think was "Dude - I can appreciate you wanting to share the Good News of Jesus with everyone but the way to not reach Germans is to randomly yell at them in public. It's just not orderly.". By now I was standing at the streetcar stop as he wandered nearby and one woman standing by me said "What's he talking about? He's so loud I can't understand him!". I shrugged my shoulders and felt grateful that a streetcar was approaching so I could get away from him. My head was splitting with pain as it was. I jumped on, the lady next to me jumped on and wouldn't you know it? Manic Street Preacher jumped on too, still hollering. The door he entered was by a group of kids coming home from school and withing a second they were up out of their seats running forward in the streetcar to get away from him. Dude! I'm pretty sure the message of Christ isn't supposed to scare children! By this time my head was screaming and since I was getting off at the next stop anyway I yelled back to him "Hey! Fella! I've got a headache! SHUT UP!".

    And by golly, he did.

  • This weekend in Magdeburg is the Mechtild festival to celebrate what they believe to be her 800th birthday. B had no idea who he was but he's not exactly up on his medieval mystics and nuns. Anyway it's being advertised as the "something different" city festival and tomorrow night there's supposed to be a big light show along the Elbe river. Maybe fireworks too - I heard some tonight but there's too many trees between my apartment and the river for me to have see them. If it's not raining tomorrow night I'll see if I can get to a good place to see it all. I think Mechtild would dig all the lights and lasers in her honor. She'd probably think she was having another one of her holy visions.

  • I tried to get rid of my headache all afternoon by trying to rest and drink some soothing tea but it didn't work. Even a nap didn't work. I finally had to break down and take some ibuprofen and with twenty minutes I was fine again. Remind me again why I always try to avoid taking medicine and get rid of my pain the "natural" way and only end up making myself feel worse until I break down and take some drugs?
Time to shuffle.
  1. Say Goodbye - Dave Matthews Band
  2. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down - The Band
  3. Upward Over The Mountain - Iron & Wine
  4. One - Metallica
  5. Love, You Didn't Do Right By Me - Rosemary Clooney
  6. Don't Know Much - Linda Ronstadt featuring Aaron Neville
  7. Strip - Adam Ant
  8. Cathy's Clown - Everly Brothers
  9. Wherever You Will Go - The Calling
  10. You Win Again - Mary Chapin Carpenter
Happy weekend, folks!


Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Good Doctor

Our family doctor makes house calls. In fact she makes a house call to us every four or five weeks because B has to be routinely seen and have prescriptions written for his anti-spasm medication and his physical therapy. She's even made a house call to us on a Sunday that was also a holiday when she had a house full of guests because B was so sick with pneumonia. So having a doctor who is so dedicated to our care should mean I should let the following slide.

Dr. K came over today for her regular visit. She always comes over on Thursday afternoons and she always takes a break with us to have coffee and cake. While she's here she checks over B, does anything with me that needs to be done (I'm diabetic so her treating me at home means I skip going into her office) and also checks over my MIL. Three patients with one house call! Efficiency!

Today Dr. K breezed in and said "I'm all messed up today. I left the office without your patient cards!".

Messed up indeed. That meant no prescriptions could be written. And the stuff she needs to take my blood for it's quarterly check was with my card so that got left behind as well. Today's visit pretty much consisted of giving B a look-see, taking our blood pressure and sitting down for a cup of coffee and a piece of my MIL's homemade plum cake.

Now I wasn't mad about this even though this means my MIL needs to go by her office to pick up our prescriptions and I have to get up early, early, early one day next week to go in to her office to have my blood taken before the lab comes by for its pick-up. I was going to have to go by her office anyway because I need a flu shot before I leave for the US. I'm not getting on any plane without first having a flu shot. I wasn't mad or irritated - I was actually sort of...sad. That sad feeling you get when someone forgets you. And it was silly to feel that way because I know how crazy busy Dr. K is. She has a huge practice with lots and lots of old patients and she sees dozens upon dozens upon dozens of patients a day. It's one of the reasons we always serve her coffee and cake when she's here - it's one of the only breaks she gets. Her forgetting to pack our patient cards is completely understandable. But it still bummed me out a little. I seem to have left-out-and-forgotten issues.

During our coffee and cake Dr. K was telling us about how over the past weekend she went through her patient files and purged files for patients who had moved or died or hadn't been in to see her in ten years. She said she had a ton of files and it felt good to purge herself of all those files that were only taking up space. That is until she came across the patient file for B's father. B's dad passed away twelve years ago so he would definitely fall into the category of patients who should be purged. But when she found the file she couldn't do it. She just tucked him back in the drawer next to B and his mom and me. She said she just couldn't take him away from us and wanted to keep something of his by which to remember him.

I stopped feeling left out and forgotten.


Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Just Watch It, Fella

Let me start off by saying that I'm sure I'm making too much of this and I'm likely reading more into the situation than it warrants. But you know if I'm going to get carried away I may as well go for a long ride.

I'm starting to get to the point where I'm getting anxious about my trip and it's more than just the latest thwarted terror activity. I'm at the point where I get concerned about how B will be taken care of while I'm gone.

I've said before that I'm quite territorial and that territory extends to B's care. I'm in charge of it, I do virtually all of it and I take full responsibility for any good or bad results. Since I took over his care he's been very sick a couple times but the last time was six years ago and he hasn't had a pressure sore in nearly ten years. I do a very good job, if I do say so myself.

While I'm gone my MIL will take care of B. She was the one who cared for B before I ever came along but she also had the help of B's dad, who has since passed away, and she hasn't had to do it full time since the last time I went home for a visit three years ago. She's also getting older and that plays a part since taking care of B can be physically demanding. However Gerd, her gentleman friend, will be around to help her out. And luckily Gerd has care giving experience. His late wife had Parkinson's and later due to a Parkinson's induced fall she was a quadriplegic. And while everyone with a spinal cord injury is different it should all be at least somewhat familiar to him. I'm sure he's going to be a great help to my MIL while she takes care of B and this should all give me some peace of mind.

But there's one little niggling thing.

Tonight B's mom called us to check in and chat and she was talking about some mutual friends who came to visit her and Gerd and have supper tonight. She made a variety of salads and cheese soup for supper. In the background we could hear Gerd going on about how great this soup is and how much B would enjoy it, blah, blah, blah. Okay - except for the fact that B doesn't like cheese soups or sauces. He won't eat cream sauces. I couldn't get him to eat macaroni and cheese if it meant saving his life. He doesn't like any white sauces, with or without cheese, with the exception of Hollandaise.

B said "Oh I wouldn't like that soup." and Gerd asked why not. B replied that he doesn't like white sauces and Gerd replied "Well when your wife's gone your mom can cook some of that cheese soup and I'll make you eat it.". B and I looked at one another with expressions that said "Wrong answer.". I know Gerd was just kidding around. I mean I feel like I know he was anyway. But still, that statement grates on my nerves.

Those who are handicapped are dependent on those who care for them. They're completely vulnerable to their caregivers. We can exercise complete control over them. There's a bond of trust that's built between a caregiver and the person for whom they care and it's one that shouldn't be abused. I don't even like joking about its abuse. To say, even as a joke, that B will be made to do anything, especially eat something he finds repulsive, bothers me a lot.

But I have to let this irritation go, else I can't make this trip. If I can't trust someone to come into my precious territory and care for B for 2 1/2 weeks then I simply have to stay home. I have to have faith that my MIL can handle, with Gerd's help, taking care of B. I know that our family physician is available at any time should B become ill in any way and I could be back home in about 24 hours if there were an emergency. I have to know that my MIL will keep B's interests in mind and her loyalties will be first with her son. I have to have faith that B will be the strong, willful person he is now and won't allow himself to be pushed around or neglected or abused by anyone.

I like Gerd and all. I think he's a very nice man and he makes my MIL very happy. I think he would do all he could to take proper care of B. I have to have faith in it. And Gerd better have faith in the fact that if I find out he's put one foot wrong and has compromised B's trust or care in any way, I'll plant my foot up his ass so far he'll think Birkenstock started making hats.

When we hung up the phone tonight B said "Gerd says something like that to me again, I'm gonna tell him to roll me over and kiss my ass.". That's my guy. Don't go down without a fight.

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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Slogging Through

I'm about a third finished with the leg of the second of the Pink Ribbon socks. I'd taken a break to do some quick knitting for another charity project and now that it's finished I can get the socks complete and sent off to the happy recipient.

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The completed first sock.

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The leg detail.

I'd mentioned before that my change in perspective and attitude was letting me enjoy the knitting process of this project more and it's holding true with this second sock. Normally I am bad to have Second Sock Syndrome - the inability to knit the second sock of a pair because you're so anxious to start a new pair - but I'm enjoying this second sock even more than the first. I think it also help that the sweet lady who won these socks had itty bitty feet. You take your joy where you can find it.

I don't think I'll have them finished before the weekend but if things work out well perhaps they'll be done this time next week. And then I don't want to see any solid pink yarn for a while.

Stripes. I need to knit something with stripes.

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Monday, September 03, 2007


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What was looming outside my kitchen window as I washed the dinner dishes.