Into the wild

I’m leaving shortly for a quick trip home to Chicago to see my family (and attend the Alanis Morissette/Matchbox Twenty concert!)… it’s supposed to snow wickedly tonight, so I’m trying to get there before 6 p.m. Not sure if that will happen or not… hopefully it doesn’t blizzard on my ass. At least not while I’m trying to drive. And while we’re at it, let’s just go ahead and keep the weather clear for my drive home on Sunday, too. kthnxbai.

Liveblogging the SOTU

I’m starting this a bit late, but so far my main thoughts have been along the lines of “God damn stop standing after every thing he says!!!!”

OK, picking up live now…Ian says, “His daughters are here? It’s like 9 p.m., shouldn’t they be pretty tore up by now?”

8:30 Even Dick Cheney looks like he’s not buying this shit.

8:31 I think Pelosi is falling asleep. And her face looks a bit like skeletor. THIS JUST IN: Ian says she is READING A BOOK! This woman is my new hero. Skeletor or not.

8:32: Oh wait, it might be the program guide. Whatever.

Is Ted Kennedy asleep? His forehead fat almost covers his eyes so I can’t tell.

Yay more clapping at nonsense.

Ooooh here we go: Immigration.”We’ve effectively ended the catch-and-release policy. But we’re just getting started on catch-and-shoot.” Well, that’s what he wanted to say.

8:33 He’s laughing again. Because finding a solution to immigration is HILARIOUS.

8:34 Talking about people in the Middle East being free. Riiiiiiiight. Oh, wait, these “images of liberty have inspired us.” Yeah, inspired us to move our asses to Canada.

8:35 Many of these “grim images” actually didn’t happen this year. But thanks for bringing them up anyway, guy.

8:36 Oh the Penguin is standing now. “We will deliver justice to our enemies.” And by that he means keep them rich and make sure we never shut down their “terrorist operations.” And keep padding the Penguin’s pockets.

8:38 Wait, if Afghanistan is this fantasy land, where all these kids are going to school and life is all rainbows and lollypops like he JUST SAID, then WHY are we sending more troops there?

8:41 OK I don’t even know what he’s talking about here. Honestly, it all just sounds like a pack of lies. Does Bush even know when he’s not bullshitting?

8:48 Sorry I got sidetracked by the PhotoBooth program on my MacBook.

8:49 And by defeated you mean given free reign of our country and private jets to protect said enemy and said enemy’s family, right? Ok, just making sure.

8:50 “We respect your traditions and your history” WE JUST WANT TO BLOW YOUR SHIT UP!!!

8:52 On the home front we will keep doing whatever we can to keep our people safe… Meaning, don’t let the gays marry or women choose what they can and can’t do with their bodies. But make sure the menfolk can carry their guns wherever they want so they can shoot up them illegals.

8:54 Oh god he’s backing the Patriot Act again. I think I just threw up in my mouth.
“If you don’t give me power to keep spying on you, you hate America and want us to get attacked.”

8:55 I think I just saw half of the House give him a Hitler salute.

8:56 $An assload to fight world hunger over the next five years. Yes, we are compassionate. As long as it’s not toward them homersexuals and slutty chicks needing abortions.

8:59 Wait, Bob Dole is going to help people build lives of promise and dignity? Bwahahahahahahahaha!!!

9:00 He is still smirking and laughing. How can anyone take him seriously?? Ok, and tripping over his tongue. He must have just come out of the trance the Penguin put him in and realized he was speaking in front of a large group of sober people.

9:01 The Penguin looks constipated. Pelosi looks like she’s trying not to laugh. Wow those two jumped out of their seats didn’t they? “Fuck yeah, bitches, it’s OVER! Let’s hit the Capitol bar before Jenna and Barbara hog all the good gin!”

Ok he’s walking out and signing autographs, and some chick says, “You make me proud to be an American.” BARF. Because where else can you get tax cuts for driving vehicles the size of a house that get 7 miles to the gallon, get praised for being racist, bigoted and oppressive, and get called un-American for wanting to preserve civil rights? Yeah, proud to be an American my ass.

November can’t come soon enough.

Note: “The Penguin” is how I refer to Dick Cheney. 

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I’ll take it

The best thing my dad did in raising me was to make me listen to James Taylor.

Growing up, there was always music playing somewhere in my house, but JT was my dad’s favorite and he made sure I appreciated him, too. It wasn’t just the catchy melodies of his songs, but the way his voice convinced me he was right behind me, singing remedies to fix whatever was troubling me at the time. His voice still stops me in my tracks sometimes.

My dad and I don’t really have a relationship anymore. I suppose it disappeared once I got old enough to think for myself. I don’t know… it’s complicated, and I guess its existence depends on which one of us you ask. But no matter how fucked up all that is, he at least gave me James Taylor. And on days like today, I try not to underestimate that.

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Plans

Even though I didn’t get up until 1:30 p.m. today (hey shut it, I needed the sleep), I have several things I need to get done this weekend. I’m fully confident that I will be able to complete them, too. As you’ll see, I’m not aiming the bar too high.

  • Eat something
  • Finish tagging Flickr photos
  • Re-vamp Ian’s resume
  • Pet and play with cats (this is never completed… it’s more of an ongoing thing but I wanted to put it on here since i KNOW I will at least achieve this goal for today.)
  • Do some laundry
  • Take shower
  • Go to friend’s 40th birthday party
  • Play new video game: Super Mario Galaxy
  • Do some work stuff

It’s going to be a busy day!

We are all characters

Don was probably in his 60s and regularly burned CDs of up-and-coming indie acts for us younger employees. He drove a shiny new Honda Civic that we nicknamed Blackhawk, and we would pile into it almost every night at break time, heading down to Sonic or McDonald’s or Taco Bell to escape the mind-numbing, back-breaking monotony of a job that was killing us but we needed because the pay was unbeatable.

He talked unashamedly about his wife of many years, bragging on her beauty and kindness and intelligence. His dark eyes sparkled as he recounted their college years, attending her Vanderbilt socials and dancing each dance with the knowledge that he would be married to her for the rest of his life.

All of the pharmacists at CMOP were there because they were fired or forced to resign from other, more desirable pharmacy jobs. Some worked part time evenings as a second job. But most were addicts, having gotten caught up in the freedom and access a pharmacist eventually finds himself faced with. Others had more gruesome troubles, though we never expected confirmation and specific crimes had the air of urban legends. CMOP was contracted by the federal government, the VA, which we soon found out was far more forgiving than “real” pharmacies.

Everyone had a story.

We never figured out why Don was there. He didn’t seem like the typical drug-addled type, and he wasn’t pervy or obviously mentally unstable. A few years ago I heard that he left, and I remember feeling relieved he got out. He deserved better than second shift in factory conditions, working with colleagues who only had bits and pieces of their good sides left.

CMOP was a sea of misfits. We were all broken–myself included. Most of the night shift techs back then were on the mend in one way or another, and once we felt up-to-snuff we didn’t stick around for long. There are only so many hours you can stand on your feet, and 17 per day proved too much for me.

I lasted six months.

Liveblogging the liveblogging of the MacWorld keynote

Well, sort of. I was trying to eat lunch and was working, so I didn’t write down my reaction to everything I saw while I was watching the liveblogging of the 2008 MacWorld Stevenote. But I took some notes. While freaking out. Here they are, unedited by the way. So don’t judge me.

Giving up on Twitter
MacRumorsLive.com has best refresh so far
TUAW was ok, but timed out on me at 11:18
Engadget ok but slow updates. They seem to be behind everyone else.
TUAW keeps timing out.
Gizmodo has good pics, and their bloggers are funniest.

2nd thing: iPhone. Damn. Probably not going to be a huge update if he’s doing it now. Come on, 3G!!!!!!!!!

I’m biting my nails off. While I have my Invisalign trays in. This is an amazing feat in itself.

New software for iPhone. Boo. I want my 3G. Or some reason to buy iPhone NOW. Come on, I’m out of contract in like two weeks!

WTF is this Time Capsule? MacRumors says 500GB/1TB Airport Extreme, but Engadget is acting like it’s a new product. WTF?

Multiple SMSs for iPhone. Still not good enough.

Maps w. location, web clips, customize home screen, SMS multiple people. Ok, maybe that SMS multiple people is cool. Though what phone doesn’t already have that? Der.

Come on, MacRumors. Don’t leave me hangin’ like this. UPDATE!!!

Hmmm apparently TUAW has gone text only. Or that’s all that I can see. Better than nothing, I guess. Do these sites not plan for insanely high traffic on MacWorld keynote day?

Can add bookmarks to your home screen on iPhone. Ok, all these little features are starting to add up. Pretty sweet. Maybe I’ll get one…

Added chapter options? WTF is that? [after-show edit: now that TUAW is up I see that means chapter navigation for videos. See, TUAW is better than MacRumorsLive because they actually tell you the whole story.]

Fuck. I guess that’s all the iPhone updates. Son of a b. That was pretty disappointing. :(

5 new apps for iPod touch. Does anyone really care about the iPod Touch? When I worked for Apple, I really had to fake my enthusiasm for it. Don’t worry, I was good at it.

Ok, third thing: iTunes.

MacRumorsLive.com is really the only site that has not crashed on me this morning. I think they will be my go-to site for keynotes from now on. I like their layout, too, even if they don’t have snarky bloggers updating for them.

Oh what do you know, TUAW is back in the land of today’s Web pages. With graphics, ads and all that. Yay.

Engadget and Gizmodo seem to be lagging.

iTUNES MOVIE RENTALS.

Great, now i HAVE to get an Apple TV. Ian is going to be pissed.

Library titles: $2.99, new releases: $3.99
30 days to start watching, 24 hours to finish. Hmm can you watch more than once?

TUAW reporting a baby crying. WTF? How does A BABY get in? Jesus Christ in a sidecar.

Hmm can transfer movies to iPod. Must try out on new Nano.

Ooh Apple TV take 2. No computer required. Nice. When Ian buys new TV, I might have to buy an AppleTV. Maybe.

OMG photos from Flickr and .Mac. Ok, I really think I want one of these.

Synching with iTunes. But couldn’t you do that before?

AppleTV really is an elusive beast.

Wait, HD rentals are $4.99. How much are they to buy? I really don’t get why you’d rent a movie if you could buy it for just twice the price. I was hoping they’d have a Netflix-like model. Except they wouldn’t suck major ass like Netflix does.

Ok so far this keynote is pretty lame. I’m holding out for a new, tinier MacBook or a 3G iPhone. please let it be the iPhone. God knows I don’t need another computer. But I will have to buy it if it’s t-tiny!!

TUAW has crapped out again.

Still demoing the movie rentals. GAH move on to something more interesting to MEEEEEE

Ok, no updates from any sites for a few mins… what’s going on guys??

Photo screen savers can be grabbed from .Mac web gallery. Greaaaaaaaat. Ugh.

TUAW totally fucked. Page doesn’t move when I scroll in browser.

Haha, “Please try back soon!” message from TUAW. Um, no.

Ok, music can be bought from within AppleTV. I think apple is trying to force me to organize all my music and photos. I really need to pare down the number of computers I actively use on a regular basis. Four is not really good for organization.

Ooh, AppleTV price drop. $299 to $229. Ok, maybe I will get one after all. but not til Ian gets a new TV. I heard it looks crappy on regular TV (from someone with the same Sony Vega as we have.)

Some assbag from Fox is apparently taking the stage. Outlook=not good for my new iPhone.

Renting music videos? Who the fuck does that?

Someone saying something about Blu-Ray. But isn’t that HD’s competitor? Those two confuse me.

MACBOOK AIR!!!!!!

Holy shit the name was true. What does it all mean? Like Air Jordans?

Oh, the world’s thinnest notebook. Thin, schmin. Give me teeeeny!! 10 inches!

13.3 inch display.

Boo. I am saddened deeply. Although somewhat relieved, because I can’t really afford a new computer right now. And I would have to buy one if it was 10 inches.

Oh, MacBook-like keyboard. Well that is the dealbreaker. I HATE the keyboard on my MacBook. HATE IT. I wish they would bring back the iBook keyboard. I love that keyboard more than my Powerbook. I’m actually selling the iBook to my sister, but had second thoughts JUST BECAUSE OF THE KEYBOARD. Seriously.

First thought when seeing how thin: You could totally sit on that and break it in half with your ass.

1.6 GHz Standard, 1.8 GHz Option — Intel Core 2 Duo
80 GB hard disk standard, 64 GB SSD as an option.

Apple apparently asked Intel to shrink the Core Duo. That’s right, bitches. Bow to Apple.

Oooh black keyboard. Ok, maybe I will get one. eventually.

Silver w/ black keyboard. hmmm looks kind of PC-ish in that photo. :(

Fuck that thing is thin! I mean anorexic thin.

Come on, one more thing!!!! Come on, 3G iPhone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have to pee so bad but don’t want to walk away. God dammit I am a nerd.

Wait. Fuck–NO CD/DVD DRIVE!!! WTF??? Omg, seriously? Holy shit. Holy holy shit. I mean, I don’t really use mine that much, but this could never be a main computer. How would you rip your music CDs onto it? Or anything else?

Oh, you can buy a separate SuperDrive made especially for MacBook Air. For $99. Weak.

2GB RAM is standard. That’s cool. 5 hours battery life. Also cool.

Holy shit. $1,799. Not cool.

Ok, please let there be a one more thing. I am saddened overall by this keynote.

Haha, environmental highlights. Go Al Gore!

Yeah, yeah, you did a lot in the first two weeks of 2008. Now GIVE ME MORE!

Uh oh, Randy Newman taking the stage. I guess there isn’t any one more thing. :'(

I wonder if they [Apple] were aware of how disappointing this keynote was going to be.

Ok, I’m still holding out… maybe one more announcement after Randy Fucking Newman finishes whatever bullshit he’s playing…

Please tell me I didn’t waste my lunch break watching this.

OMG up-close shot from MacRumors of Randy Newman. Y’all have to warn us before throwing that shit up there! He looks like a Chester the Molester for chrissakes!!

Apparently Newman is singing a song about America and the president and comparing them to Hitler and Stalin. Well isn’t that cute. I mean, I don’t disagree, per say, but damn.

ok apparently newman’s going a bit crazy on stage

boo, it’s over. no one more thing. going to cry now.

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Wishing

Random things that I wish, in no particular order. Actually, the second-to-last one is probably the most important:

I wish that I would inherit a sum of money large enough to make it where Ian and I could afford a nice house, pay off my car and my student loans, and maybe travel a bit, but small enough so that I would have to still work (though part-time might be OK.) I guess even if I won a lot of money I would still WANT to work (after taking time off to travel, of course) because I really do love what I do, but I’m afraid that coming into a ridiculous amount of money would just introduce a whole new set of problems and stress into my life. Not to mention the curse that accompanies lotto winnings, apparently. I don’t want any part of that shit.

I wish that my cat, Gordo, would let me dress him up in funny costumes, like as Friar Tuck or something, so I could take hilarious pictures and start an Internet phenomenon.

I wish that there was an iTunes dashboard widget that, when a song was playing in iTunes, you could mark it and make it go into a certain playlist.

I wish that as my hair grew longer, it would also acquire more body and volume. Not the opposite, like it does now.

I wish that I had started blogging back in the summer of 2000 when I first got the Internet hooked up at my apartment.

I wish that I could play the guitar. I guess I can fix this. Anyone want to teach me? And give me a guitar?

I wish that certain people (and that means you, State of Tennessee and any of the other 20-odd places he’s applied) would realize how smart and hardworking and capable Ian is, and just freaking call him to interview for your biostatistics opening (especially you, State of Tennessee, who has had numerous openings posted and unfilled SINCE JULY). So what if he doesn’t have billions of years of experience under his belt yet–your job listing doesn’t ask for that, anyway. He does have a master’s in biostatistics (and a bachelor’s in mathematics with an economics minor) and recently completed an internship with the Tennessee Department of Health. And he can learn anything you throw at him in a ridiculously short amount of time. He is that good.

I… wish you were here… is my favorite song ever.

I hope I’m not kidding myself here

I generally don’t make New Year’s resolutions because I don’t like setting myself up for failure, but I thought maybe I’d try some this year that don’t involve losing 20 pounds or overhauling my personality, like most people aim to do. So, we’ll see how it goes. If I don’t keep them all, fuck it. I was pretty awesome in 2007 anyway.

  • Play more video games
  • Spend more time sitting on the floor giving the cats my undivided attention
  • Find new music
  • Learn how to fully (ok, better) use my Digital Rebel XTi
  • Take quality pictures of things other than my cats (but don’t stop photographing the cats. BK will pay off one day, dammit!!)
  • Revel in my time off (i.e. don’t sleep til noon or 1 p.m. EVERY WEEKEND)
  • Take more day trips
  • Do more spontaneous, fun things with/for Ian
  • Buy more fun skirts/shoes to wear to work (i.e. cut back on the plain ole jeans)
  • Actually wear those fun skirts/shoes
  • Spend more time outdoors (when the weather gets nicer)
  • Walk more
  • Drink more water
  • Keep up the no-nailbiting after my braces are off
  • Whiten teeth
  • Have gum-reduction surgery (Or, if it’s hella expensive, save up the money to have it in 2009)
  • Sell house
  • Move to Nashville

OK, those last things were a little lofty, but I am convinced once Ian gets settled into a job in Nashville we can sell our condo and move downtown. Anyone want to buy a nice condo in Murfreesboro?

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It’s Miller Time! (or, Ian and I Attend the Wedding of the Year)

The week after Christmas, Ian and I traveled to St. Petersburg, Fla., for our good friend Chris (Miller)’s wedding. We’d been looking forward to the event since Miller told us he got engaged, as he is a great friend of both Ian and mine and we knew all kinds of shenanigans would go on nice, appropriate fun would be had. Riiiiiight.

341402699_05e8328ff8.jpgChris is probably the one friend that Ian and I have that is truly mutual. Even though Ian knew him first (in high school), I met him while I was working at CVS and he was home from UT for the summers and working there, too. We instantly hit it off as friends (never as anything more, in case his new wife is reading this and doesn’t know that we never bumped uglies. Or anything else. I already suspect she doesn’t like me because I am a girl and a. cuss a lot, b. play video games and c. pretty much act like a guy). Anyway, whenever we get together, Ian, Chris and I are like peas in a pod. (A drunk, video-game playing pod, most of the time.) Seriously, I never laugh more than when I’m hanging out with those two guys.

Soooo, we were eagerly anticipating this wedding for several reasons, including: a. Ian was in it, b. Miller’s awesome parents were putting us up in a nice-ass hotel for three nights, c. it was in Florida and d. freaking Miller was getting married!! We just knew good times were in store.

Anyway, so we stuffed my little Civic as full of luggage, wedding outfits and presents as we could get it, threw our friend Scott in the back seat and piled more shit on top of him, and headed down the road for St. Pete (where, by the way, Ian lived for a year—2003—with Chris when he first started law school. Chris is now a state prosecuter in Daytona Beach. We don’t hold that against him.)

After an overnight stop in Valdosta, Ga., we rolled on into St. Pete, dropped Scott off at his not-so-luxury hotel (but one that would serve him nicely when he got so drunk he went to VomitTown, which apparently was located in his room’s bathtub) and headed over to check ourselves in to the Renaissance Vinoy Resort. Freaking sweet.

Thursday night we went out (and afterward Scott went to VomitTown), and then Friday was the rehearsal dinner.

Now, let me just tell you. I already knew this was going to be a fancy-pants event since the bride’s parents are both doctors (one medical, one academic) and Miller’s parents are pretty well-to-do themselves. So I was well prepared with a nice cocktail dress, a holster of small-talk and some rockin’ kneeboots.

What did make for an entertaining evening was the medley of characters seated at our table: Ian and myself; a Vandy-grad/elementary ed teacher bridesmaid originally from Connecticut and her fiance; a colleague/fellow lawyer from Miller’s office; and Miller’s sister and her husband, who I believe is a farmer but was also one of the funniest people at that whole freaking wedding. Maybe it was the fact that he was letting his redneck flag fly in the middle of a bunch of stuffshirts, but GOD DAMN he had Ian and I cracking up the whole time. Also cracking us up was Connecticut/Vandy girl who had to get her fiance to explain to her what a crackpipe, numchucks and a butterfly knife were. Don’t ask how all that came up in conversation. I also remember Miller’s sister’s husband discussing the numerous guns he owns, as well as tobacco farming and a story of how he came to love Pink Floyd in college. That guy was a breath of fresh air that weekend.

Saturday morning I woke up with a rash covering most of my body (compliments of the hotel sheets, I surmise), but most of the redness had gone down (except on my pale-ass legs, of course) by the time we had to leave to go to the church, so it was all good. I was rockin’ another black dress and cute shoes, and I had my Digital Rebel XTi with me to document the event. (Well, that was the plan. But when you serve top-shelf booze for free, things have the tendency to go a little off course.)

The ceremony was gorgeous, with a string quartet, a piano player and a soloist. It was held at a Methodist church with what seemed like almost a full whatever-you-call-it (not mass, but whatever you call non-Catholic church time), and communion was served, too. Like good heathens, Ian and I politely declined, though I have photographic evidence of our athiest friend Alex taking the square of bread. Something about free food…

The reception was lavish—awesome hors d’oeuvres and even better food—and the cake freaking rocked. Oh, and did I mention the booze? Yeah, Ian went to VomitTown later that night. (And I danced a little jig when we made it back home because I never went! I thought I might be going a time or two, but I managed to jump off the VomitTown Express just in time.)

And to top it all off, Ian even danced with me a couple of times. Once because it was our four-year anniversary and I requested a song for us (The Beatles’ “When I’m 64,” which, by the way, is fucking IMPOSSIBLE to dance to and we looked like idiots until Miller’s dad and sister joined us on the dance floor), and then he asked me for the last dance of the night. All together now: Awwww.

Anyway, the next day we took off and headed back home, though we stopped in Macon, Ga., to watch the Titans game. Also, a public service announcement: If you are ever in Macon, Ga., and are looking for some good food, GO TO GIUSEPPE’S PIZZA. Actually, if you are in a 100-mile radius of Macon go there. It’s on Tom Hill Road. You won’t regret it.

The wedding was great, as we knew it would be—beautifully and tastefully done, and I’m happy and hopeful for the bride and groom. (As long as the bride was just joking about that no video games in her house comment. Because seriously, WTF? No video games?) And while we didn’t get to spend as much time with Chris as we normally do when we visit, we’ll let it slide since he was getting married and all. Some people apparently like to make a big to-do about all that. :)

Oh, yeah: Pictures from the trip.