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Saturday, December 24, 2011

The One With the 12 Library Days of Christmas

What? It's been since September since I've written anything? Anything at all?

Yeah, I know.

But what better time than that which I am forced to work on Christmas Eve to update?

I don't even really have a good update, but I've been composing the 12 Library Days of Christmas in my head all day, and I was going to put it on Twitter, but then I decided I could illustrate it and everything here. Plus, I could make empty promises about how I swear I'm going to write more in the coming year and I could talk about how, one of these days, I'll tell you all about my new job, beginning in January, and the fact that I got married in November.

But I digress.

The 12 Days of Library Christmas

On the first day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Working on Christmas Eve

On the second day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Two massive fines

. . .and working on Christmas Eve

On the third day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Three screaming kids

. . .two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the fourth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Four fighting thugs

. . .three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the fifth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Fiiiive un-su-per-vised teens

. . .four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the sixth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Six drunks a-snoring

. . .fiiiiive un-supervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the seventh day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Seven stolen laptops

. . .six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiiive un-supervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the eighth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Eight nasty phone calls

. . .seven stolen laptops, six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiiive un-supervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the ninth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Nine lost USB drives

. . .eight nasty phone calls, seven stolen laptops, six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiiive unsupervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the tenth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Ten lying liars

. . .nine lost USB drives, eight nasty phone calls, seven stolen laptops, six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiive unsupervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve

On the eleventh day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Eleven ringing cellphones

. . .ten lying liars, nine lost USB drives, eight nasty phone calls, seven stolen laptops, six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiiive unsupervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve.

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my patrons gave to me. . .

Twelve inane questions

. . .eleven ringing cellphones, ten lying liars, nine lost USB drives, eight nasty phone calls, seven stolen laptops, six drunks a-snoring, fiiiiiiiive unsupervised teens, four fighting thugs, three screaming kids, two massive fines, and working on Christmas Eve!

Merry Christmas and happy assorted other holidays to whatever readers I have left. I hope your presents are awesome, your carols are on-key, and your gingerbread houses are especially gingerbready.

Until I get my act together to write with more frequency. . .I bid you adieu and farewell. Merry Christmas, y'all!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The One With the Insensitive Manager

I did not complete my month-long picture project. I think you all probably guessed that would happen. Sorry. You shouldn't believe me. I lie, it seems.

D and I were at a grocery store near our house last night. It's a mid-price grocery store (WHY don't I live within walking distance of an Aldi's??), but we can walk there without much effort, so that's where we generally go.

We were checking out (ready to go home and have our Super-Healthy-Fruit-Veggie-Cheese-Wheat Thin Dinner Extravaganza) when I heard one of the night managers talking to the little bagger girl.

"If you don't stop eating so much sugar," he said, loudly, "you're going to get diabetes. You'll go blind in one eye, and one of your legs will have to be chopped off."

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .




Um, what?

Not only is that NOT HOW YOU GET DIABETES, but the type of diabetes that is more toward the lifestyle side of things is 90% of diabetics. The other lucky 10%, myself included, get it because, uh, our autoimmune systems spontaneously decide to say, "ATTACK THE PANCREAS!"


My immediate thought was to go over to the guy (who was a manager, of all people. Someone who should know better), grab him by his polo-shirt collar, throw him up against the wall and yell, "Why don't you SHUT YOUR WHORE MOUTH about things you KNOW NOTHING ABOUT, you effing DOUCHENOZZLE?!"

Then I figured, well, it's better to tell his manager. Because if I yell at him, HE will know he did something wrong, but he will likely not care. But if his manager is aware he did something wrong, she will speak to him, and possibly his co-workers would all be like, "Oooooh, you're in trooooubllllleeeeee."

Note: "Trouble" is a difficult word to elongate.)

D went up there and spoke to the manager in order to find out Douchenozzle's name, and then I gave her a call. She was very nice, very apologetic, and very horrified when I told her what they guy had said.

I sort of wanted to see him get fired, but that was just my bum pancreas talking.

I stayed irritated for hours after we left, and I was irritated when I woke up.

If you're diabetic, you're allowed to tell diabetic jokes. You're allowed to talk about how you could get your foot chopped off, or how you could go blind, or whatever. You're allowed to say things that are ridiculous and untrue about your own disease. Humor is a coping mechanism.

We diabetics (and I'm going to make this statement even smaller and say we Type 1s) deal with this bullshit every day. When I wake up, I'm strapped to an insulin pump. If I weren't strapped to a pump, I'd need to take injections. I have to stick my fingers multiple times daily. I have to count carbohydrates in what I eat to know how much insulin to take. Most people's pancreases do that for them. Mine decided it had a better job offer.

It would be like telling a cancer survivor a cancer joke. Or making one of those ubiquitous Dead Baby Jokes to someone who's had 5 miscarriages and is going through those hormone therapies. It's. . .not funny. You don't know what the hell you're talking about. As soon as you've had your blood sugar climb toward 600 because your pump isn't working or you wake up disoriented, having lost hours of your day due to low blood sugar you didn't even know you had, THEN you can talk about going blind and cutting your feet off.

There's a fine line, I think. On one of the blogs I read, the author made a diabetes-related joke that I actually thought was pretty funny. The deal there is, if you go to this particular blog, you need to prepare yourself for irreverance and possibly being insulted.

But I don't go to the grocery store thinking I'm going to be insulted and joked about.

And then I got to thinking. I was diagnosed in October of 1989. I was 4. I have to wonder how that guy would feel if he knew that a newly-diagnoses 4-year-old had heard what he said and spent the next week and a half crying every night before going to bed, maybe even IN bed, because she thinks she's going to go blind or lose one of her legs. How funny is THAT, Mr. Comedian?

It's people you don't know, it's people you do know. . .no one really knows how this effects people like me. My college best friend told a friend of his once that he was getting tired of how dramatic I was being about the whole diabetes thing, how I was doing stuff to get attention. (This was after I woke up at 4 in the afternoon, in the shower, not knowing how I'd gotten there or what else I'd done that day.) No one gets it, but that doesn't mean you have to air your ignorance in public.

I don't care about the parents of diabetics who get all up in arms offended about every little thing. I care about that little kid who may not quite realize yet that this is forever. It's not a death sentence, but they're taking it with them to the end. I have an aunt that died, most likely, from complications from Type 1. I'm on my 22nd anniversary this year and have thus far avoided the macular degeneration that generally begins around the 20th year. I'm grateful for that.

But I'd love to take Mr. DoucheComedian and put a small, ticking time bomb inside of him. He doesn't know when it's going to go off (if it goes off at all) and he doesn't know what'll happen when it does go off. . .how bad the damage will be or whatever. He just knows it's there, and there's nothing he can do about it.

And then I'll go make jokes about it. Not TO him, but near him, so he can go home and think about his bomb, and other people's perceptions of his bomb. I'd like him to have a bomb that is similar in name to another type of bomb, but to have few people know the difference, so they're constantly telling him how to deal with his bomb, and how he could have prevented his bomb, and the like. Like they know ANYTHING about his bomb.

OK, now I'm rambling, so I'll stop. I'm sorry.

Don't joke about or talk about things you literally know nothing about. It makes you look bad, and makes me not want to shop at your store anymore.

That's all.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The One With the Hurricane

So, Hurricane Irene came and went. We're far enough inland in North Carolina that this was the extent of the damage done to the area where we live:

I love hurricanes. I don't like being IN them, but I love the build up, watching hurricane coverage all day, listening to the wind and rain, all that kind of thing.

Yesterday, while we watched the peripheral of the storm outside the window, I told D I felt like one of those people on the cop shows, the ones that, like, their mother was raped and produced them, so then they go after rapists?

Which, OK, is a TERRIBLE analogy if you don't know what I'm talking about. What I mean is, the people whose lives were affected by something, so that becomes a focal point of their lives from there on out.

Back in 1996, when Hurricane Fran came through North Carolina, my family and I were living in a house in kind of the country side of the city, in the woods, with lots of trees around. Prior to Fran coming through, Hurricane Bertha came through, and it had been raining for what seemed like weeks, so the ground was nice and squishy, and that was why so many trees ended up down.

We ended up with this 100-foot sycamore tree that knocked out part of our back deck and that came crashing through the kitchen bay window.

Trauma. I was a kid/am an adult that is fairly easily traumatized anyway, so that made this giant, scary impact on my life (at least as far as hurricanes are concerned) from then until now.

So it could potentially make sense that now, I'm kind of obsessed with hurricanes, while they're happening. I also know information that is kind of weird to have stored away, but it's there, because I've read so much about it.

Anyway, I woke up at 8 yesterday and spent the better part of the day watching out the window and watching news coverage. The beach area got hammered, but where we live barely saw anything. Which is simultaneously good and a little disappointing. Not saying I want bad things to happen, but they'd hyped this thing up so much, I expected at least a couple of missing shingles.

Additionally, I'm aware that I started the month-long-picture-a-day thing and lasted. . .one day. Since D didn't get home until 8 this morning, and is going to be sleeping all day, most likely, I'm going to make it my goal to get through the past month's pictures so that maybe I can finish out the month with the people who actually were meticulous and finished the project.

We'll see.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The One With the Photo Challenge: Day 1

I know. I'm kind of notorious for starting projects on this blog and just kind of losing interest halfway through. It's kind of weird, actually, because in real life, I'm pretty good about seeing things through, but on my blog, I just. . .don't.

But I'm going to attempt this August Photo Challenge. Possibly, it will inspire me to post something every day. Possibly, it will be something else I will fail at and it will make me sad. We'll see!

The pictures will probably be taken with my cell phone camera, so I'll apologize for that in advance. Here's the list:

It's currently August 2, and as such, I'll post twice today. I know you're excited.


Day 1: Self-Portrait

Friday, July 29, 2011

The One Where the Internet is Ruining the World

I'm fairly certain the Internet is what is causing the downfall of civilization as we know it.

That might be an odd thing for someone like me to say, considering I have a blog (a couple blogs, actually), I get most of my recipes online, I read news online, and I have a certain love affair with Google.

But watching people these days, just the way people are makes me feel like if not for the massive amount of online time and information you can find online, we'd be a lot better off.

I offer the following examples:

Example 1: Everyone is so damn hateful.

Granted, there have been mean people since the beginning of time. The Internet, however, and the anonymity offered therein, have made it almost impossible to consider our current culture as anything but a bunch of bullies.

I mostly blame the comment sections on news stories. Any Joe Shmo with computer access and an e-mail address (sometimes not even an e-mail address) can comment on anything. And most of the time, the comments aren't even relevant. A story about Amy Winehouse's death will have a, "SEE, DIS IS WHA HAPINS BECUZ OBBAMA'S DA PREZ." A story about Casey Anthony and how she killed her daughter and got away with it will have a, "Woohoo! WHAT A HOTTIE. I'd like to GET WITH THAT!" Any story in the world will have something about how Democrats/Republicans are the reason the country is in such bad shape.

People are able to be anonymous, so that makes them feel they have the right to say whatever they want.

I think in order to fix it, we need to require anyone who's going to post anything anywhere to include their photograph and home phone number. Then we'll see what people have to say.

Example 2: The Internet makes people think they know everything.

Blame Wikipedia. Blame WebMD. Everyone now thinks they know everything about everything. It doesn't make any difference that a lot of stuff is posted by people who also don't know anything about anything. Even now, people take things they see on the Internet as being the Gospel Truth.

People tell their doctors that the diagnosis is wrong, because they read on WebMD that it has to be something else. People get lame forwards of urban legends, and then suddenly, they're telling everyone and their mother that Oh my GOD, you guys, if you don't put your porch light on from 7:14 p.m. t0 8:57 p.m. next Wednesday, you are UN-AMERICAN.

And if you tell someone who learned something online that they're wrong? God save you.

Patron: I should be able to check out these books by using this iPhone app that has my library card barcode in it. I read it online.
Me: Well, unfortunately, we don't have the capabilities to. . .
Patron: But I READ IT ONLINE! YOU CAN DO IT!
Me: Yes, it IS technology that's currently available, but our county doesn't yet have the equipment that you need to be able to. . .
Patron: You are CLEARLY AN IDIOT. It said ONLINE that I can check out books WITH MY PHONE.

It doesn't matter that he read an article in the New York Times about how the New York Public Library is doing that now. He read it online, and that makes it fact. How dare you argue?

Which brings me to. . .

Example 3: The Internet is making everyone stupid.

Technology is a good thing. We've made amazing advances in the last 30 years to get us to where we are today. You can use your cell phone to make a dinner reservation, call your wife to tell her to meet you at the restaurant, and program your DVR to record the TV shows you'll miss while you're out to dinner. You can do all of that.

But you can't spell, and when you text your wife to remind her to wear the red dress you like so much to dinner, it comes out, "Wear ur RED DRESS 2 dinner."

I'm not entirely sure when it became acceptable to say "2" instead of "to" or "ur" instead of "your," but all it's going to do is cause kids to not be able to spell. All you need to do is glance at, let's say, a 7-year-old's text they're sending, and you can see it's already something of an epidemic.

(That is to say nothing of how young kids are when they get their own phone these days. If you want my opinion, if you're younger than 13, you have no need for a cell phone that does anything but call your parents, and maybe one other pre-programmed number. It's completely unnecessary. You don't need to text anyone. You don't need to call anyone. But that's just me.)

(My kids are going to HATE ME.)

No one cares about spelling and grammar anymore. No one cares they sound like a bunch of idiots, because most people are a bunch of idiots.

D was driving a bunch of 20-somethings home in the cab to a bar the other night, and one of them was giving the other a hard time for using "ur." Good for him. I want to be friends with that guy, maybe buy him a beer.

I'm just sad that it's now cool to be dumb. That's all there is to it. Dumbness is so mainstream, it's now the smart people, the people who use the proper versions of there, their or they're, and the people who take the extra half-second to spell out "your" that are the weird ones.

All of that being said, yeah. I'm convinced that the Internet and the fact that everyone has access to it is part of the reason we're in the shape we're in now. Unfortunately, I don't think it's going to get any better any time soon.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The One With North Carolina's New Law

Anyone who caught my math error yesterday can now give a giant sigh of relief -- I actually DO know the difference between 80 and 90, but I do not

According to the Raleigh News & Observer, the North Carolina Senate has overturned the governor's veto of an abortion law.

North Carolina being, of course, in the Bible Belt of America, stuff like this and The Gays and. . .pretty much anything not having to do with the parts of the Bible that're usually in the spotlight are SERIOUS BUSINESS, YOU GUYS! I can't say I'm altogether surprised with this decision, but that doesn't mean I agree with it.

The new law states that women seeking abortions have to get ultrasounded, get state-mandated counseling, and wait 24 hours before actually getting one.

So, basically what's going on here, is that abortion isn't illegal, because the people voting don't want it to be, but what is instead going to happen is that anyone seeking to get a legal abortion is going to be guilted counseled, have to look at the ultrasound, and then wait anyway, so they can then ruminate on everything they've been told.

I think it's garbage.

The pro-law people are arguing that women "should have all the information available to them."

Yes, absolutely. They should. They should know exactly what it is they're doing, and should be offered all the information they need/want/whatever.

They should be offered all the information.

They should not have the information forced upon them.

What is the point of an ultrasound? The only thing this could possibly be for is to wave it in the woman's face and say, "SEE? It's a BABY!" There's no medical need to do that.

Counseling. . .that one's a little harder, but again, I think it's something that should be OFFERED, not FORCED. I would love to know what these "state-mandated" counseling sessions are going to look like.

Doctor: I see you're wanting an abortion.
Patient: Yes.
Doctor: Don't you know that's evil? Don't you know it's murder?
Patient: But I was raped by my brother and have always known that if I give birth, it'll kill me.
Doctor: But it's your BABY. You're going to KILL your BABY!

I think that, yeah, counseling should be OFFERED, both before and after the procedure, but that forcing someone into it is just making an already bad situation worse.

The 24-hour waiting period is. . .actually, I can sort of get behind that. Someone comes in, you offer (but don't force) the information on them, offer them counseling, and they can make an appointment to come in the next day. That could work, I guess. So we'll keep the 24-hour waiting period, but I think the rest is crap.

So what do you think? And I promise, if you disagree, I'm not going to be like, "RAWR!" I'd like to have someone that can logically and reasonably explain to me (without the use of morals and religion) why this is a good idea. Because last time I checked, government wasn't supposed to do things because of religion. And they certainly don't care about morality.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The One With the Fat Girlfriends

I'd like to start off by letting everyone know that today is the 90th anniversary of insulin being a thing. On July 27, 1921, Charles Best and Frederick Banting did the stuff sciencey people do and made it possible for me to have not died for the last 22-ish years. So thanks to those guys.


I was at lunch today and watching. . .you know, I don't even know what the channel was. Fox News or CNN or something along those lines. One of the "breaking stories" was that askmen.com did a poll where they asked men all sorts of "explosively revealing" questions. You know, stuff like "Should men pay for dates?" and "Would you make your penis smaller if you could?" (What? Unsurprisingly, 0% of men would.)

The one that this lady was making such a big deal about was the question, "Would you dump your girlfriend if she got fat?"

I first need to explain this lady that was talking. She was. . .she seemed a little insane. You know the people that are just SO dramatic about everything they say? "I can't BE-LIEVE he'd SAY that! She was SO incredible!" Stuff like that?

She was one of those.

To visualize, she was this black lady, wearing a peach-colored shirt and matching lipstick that went so far over her natural lip line, she looked like 80% of her face was mouth.

So she's getting all worked up about the responses to this question. Apparently, 47% of men surveyed said yes, they would break up with their girlfriend if she got fat.

To be fair to men, this was less than half of the people who responded. Not much less than half, but still less.

So Mouthy McGob was going on and on about these results. She also had three "correspondents" whose opinions she was asking. Two of them were male and one was female.

I didn't get to hear the entirety of the conversation, but from what I did see, Mouthy was interrupting everyone, making sure that everyone knew she was SO APPALLED with the results. Everyone else was trying to be diplomatic, but she just wanted to make sure the whole viewing audience knew that SHE was OFFENDED.

(She wasn't a heavy woman, by the way. She was offended for women in general, I think, not just for the ones who have gained weight.)

So here's my question: What is so wrong with the guys answering the way they did? Is it a rule that you have to stay with someone even if you're not attracted to them?

One of the male "correspondents" said, "You know, I don't think that they're saying they'd break up with their girlfriend if they gained 10, 15 pounds. I think they're picturing major obesity."

One of the females said, "Generally, if a woman gains that much weight rapidly, there's something mental, or emotional going on. They should try to get to the root of it, and figure out what's actually wrong with HER, not just her body."

The Mouth was appalled with both of these points of view. "WHY wouldn't they STAY with their GIRLFRIENDS even if they'd REACHED OBESITY??? Even if you're TALKING about their MENTAL HEALTH, the REAL issue here is still WHAT THEY LOOK LIKE."

I kind of agree with both the man and woman who offered opinions, when they were actually able to get them out without being interrupted.

If you're not a man who is attracted to bigger ladies, why would someone expect you to be with one? That's not saying that women should diet like crazy and try to stay itty bitty because of some man's notion of beauty. That's saying, if for whatever reason, you're exclusively attracted to people with brown eyes, and your boyfriend goes out and has Eye Color Changing Surgery (I KNOW that's not a thing), knowing that that's what you like about him, he shouldn't be terribly surprised that you're less attracted to him.

I'm not saying someone's eye color should be the sole reason you're with them, but stuff like that, the people you're attracted to, is innate. It's just who you are.

I'd also have to go with the woman talking about the emotions leading to the weight gain. I don't think guys should immediately see his girlfriend gaining weight and say, "OMG! You're GROSS! We're BREAKING UP!" Gaining weight isn't an overnight thing. I think if a relationship is secure, you can say things like, "Hey, I've noticed X, Y, and Z. Everything OK?"

Maybe that's just me.

Also, at the bottom-most base of it, guys are visual creatures, and a lot of guys are really shallow, too. So there's that.

So what about you guys? Are you as appalled as Mouthy McGob about this? Are you unsurprised? Are you more concerned with whether Charles Best and Frederick Banting were severe hotties or not? (Hint: One was. One was. . .not so much.)

What do you think?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The One With Ten on Tuesday

I know this is a cop-out of an entry, but seeing as to how I'm doing my best to stay on top of this blog (That's what she said?), sometimes, a cop-out it will have to be.




1. What color are your toenails painted?

They are this really incredible summery orange color ("Crushed") I bought a few weeks back. It's Sally Hanson's Hard as Nails X-Treme Wear line, so it's pretty badass, thanks for noticing.


2. What color are your fingernails painted?

Up until about 3 days ago, they were the same color as my toenails. I took the polish off, though, because my nails have a tendancy to turn yellow if I leave polish on them for too long. I haven't painted them again since I took the orange off.


3. What is your favorite brand of nail polish?

I'm uncertain as to why the first three questions are all nail polish related, but the Hard as Nails X-Treme wear stays on forever and looks awesome, so I'm going to go with that. I need to get more colors before the summer ends/Target raises the price/they get rid of them to spite me.


4. As the norm, do you DIY your nails or get mani/pedis?

I've never had a "pedi" and the last time I had a "mani," I was about 10.


5. Have you ever had a gel mani? Do you recommend it?

No and, as a result, no.


6. What is the last movie you watched on television? (TV, Redbox, Netflix, etc.)

I watched "Cars" about a week ago, but that was on DVD, not any of the aforementioneds. We've got Netflix, but we get mostly TV shows. The last episode of a TV show I watched from Netflix was from Season 5, I believe, of Dawson's Creek.


7. What is the last movie you watched in the theatre?

The Social Network. See how often I get out and to the movies? I saw The Social Network on October 5, 2010.


8. Is there a movie that everyone talks about as being a classic that you've never seen?

Most of the movies people talk about as being classics, I've never seen. I've never seen any of the Godfather movies. I've never seen Citizen Kane. Those are the only ones I can think of right offhand.


9. What is your favorite movie soundtrack?

"Chicago"


10. Have you ever seen a movie and thought it was better than the book it was based on?

"The Devil Wears Prada" is an excellent movie, and a terrible book. On the flip side of that, if you're interested, "The Time Traveller's Wife" is one of my favorite books and the movie was one of the most terrible movies I've seen in life.


The One With Captain Novolin

I'm noticing that a lot of my posts from K's visit involve my Super Nintendo in some form or another. I think I'm OK with that. SNES needs some love.



So, you all know I'm a big flaming diabetic, right? How even though I have this giant disease, I usually avoid talking about it?



A month and a half or so ago, my insulin pump went haywire, and it made me do some serious re-evaluating of my life. Since then, I've been Super 'Betes Girl, keeping my blood sugar where it needs to be, and realizing that just because I don't talk about it, that doesn't make it any less real or any less serious. (In case you forget, I'm a Type 1, insulin-dependent diabetic. . .none of this Type 2 control-with-diet-and-exercise stuff.)




The other day, I was standing at the sink, and, unbeknownst to me, the 42-inch tubing I'm using currently got wrapped around the handle of the cabinet in front of me. As I went to walk away, the tube got pulled, pulling the pump out of my pocket, and making it clatter on the floor. I yelled a G-rated word (since I was watching K), and she asked what had happened.




"My pump fell on the floor," I said.




"What's a pump?" she asked.



A teaching moment!




In language a 7-year-old could understand, I told her that in your body, you've got something called a pancreas. The pancreas makes insulin, which is something your body needs to use the food you eat to give you energy. If you don't have insulin, you get very sick. My pancreas doesn't work right, so I have to give myself insulin. The pump I have here acts like a pancreas, giving me insulin throughout the day so I don't get sick.




K nodded. I could tell I'd sort of lost her, but she said, "Oh, OK."




Teaching moment, shmeaching moment.




So about three days ago, she is, again, playing the Super Nintendo. She pulls out a game and says, "What's this?"




"This" was. . .Captain Novolin.


For those of you not in the know (which I'm guessing is. . .most of you), Captain Novolin is a game that I received when I was 8 or 9. The graphics are pretty bad, the evil dudes are disguised as sugary snacks (jumpin' killer jelly donuts, Batman!) and are difficult to kill, but it's still one of the best. games. EVER.



Captain Novolin is a diabetic superhero. Throughout the game, you have to make sure he follows the meal plan his doctor gave him, so his blood sugar doesn't go too high or too low.

It sounds like a drag, I'm aware. But it's actually fairly awesome. My parents gave it to me and I've played it ever since.

Using this as another Teaching Moment, I tried to make the game sound awesome, to entice K into playing.

"That's Captain Novolin!" I said in my best "this is going to be AWESOME!" voice. "He's a superhero who's diabetic, like me!"

She looked dubious.

But then she stuck the game in the console and powered it up.

I walked her through the beginning of the game, showing her how to "give an insulin injection," explaining how to eat the proper balance of foods at meals, and how to "check your blood sugar."

She started to play and, since it's not an especially well-made or easy-to-figure-out game, she got frustrated quickly. I was afraid I'd lose my TM, so I said, "Hey! Do you want me to play through and show you how to do it?" She said yes, so I spent the next few minutes all excited about insulin shots and proper diets.

And believe it or not, she is ALL INTO IT now. I'll be in the kitchen and hear, "Aw, man! I accidentally ate an extra apple! Now my blood sugar's going to be high!" It's a beautiful thing.

Does she understand the minute details of the 'betes? No, probably not. But I feel like we've had a Moment. And that's awesome.

Unfortunately, the game is having some issues I've never had with it before. The screen is randomly messing up, and preventing the continuing of playing. I looked for a new one on both Amazon and eBay, and I can't find it for less than $25. So if any of you out there in blog land see a copy of Captain Novolin anywhere for less than that, I'd appreciate you letting me know.

Maybe whenever I have kids, I can use the good Captain to help me teach them about the 'betes, too.


Edit: Holy crap, you guys. When the game first came out, it cost $59.95. My parents were badass! I'd still like to find it for less than $25, though. . .

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The One With the Yearbooks

K brought her Nintendo Wii along with her for her two-week visit, and I am quite pleased and satisfied to say that it's still tucked away in the bag she brought it in. She's been playing, basically non-stop, my old circa 1993 Super Nintendo. It makes me proud.

One of the games she especially loves is Mario Paint. You can't play it with the controllers -- you have to use the mouse that came with the game. It also has a mousepad that goes with it, but I've misplaced that somewhere back at my dad's house. I still have it, but I haven't made the effort to track it down. As such, when you play the game, you have to have some kind of flat surface to put the mouse on. A couple of nights ago, I noticed that K had pulled one of my old yearbooks off the shelf to use as the mousepad.

When she'd finished playing, I picked up the yearbook and told her that it was my 2nd grade yearbook. She's going into 2nd grade this year, so that piqued her interest. She looked up my picture and told me how cute I was.

Then she proceeded to through all my yearbooks, looking for my picture, and making commentary on and asking things about stuff I'd written in the books.

"Why does this girl have her face colored in?"
"Because she was mean to me."
"I have a friend that's mean to me."
"If she's mean to you, why is she your friend?"
"Well, she used to do this every time I looked at her." (Rolls her eyes and puts on bitchface.)
"Does she still do it?"
"No. We're friends now."

The politics of 1st graders.

"Why did you put checkmarks beside these people?"
"Those were my friends."
"I have lots of friends."

Then I showed her my elementary school boyfriend (my longest-term relationship to date, lasting from kindergarten until 4th grade, when I left to go to a different school). He just got married, incidentally.

"Cute," K said.

She shuffled through the yearbooks for a while longer until she got to high school.

"Why do three of these say 'high school' on them?"
"Because I was at that high school for three years. I was at a different school for 9th grade."
"Four years?"
"Yeah. High school lasts four years."
"No it doesn't."
"Yeah it does."
"I won't be in high school for four years."
"I bet you will."

She told me I was pretty in all of my high school pictures. (Why can't EVERYONE look at people like kids do?)

Then I said, "Hey, I'll show you my boyfriend from 11th grade." I paged through the Junior class until I came to his picture. I pointed it out to her.

She didn't say anything. She just laughed. I'm not sure why, but she just laughed.

And that's why we get along.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The One With the Picky Eater and the Cake

K is a picky eater.

She doesn't like to try new things, and if you ask her if she wants to experience something new, usually, she'll say no. Generally, if you cajole her into trying something new, whether she likes it or not, she'll make this face, to prove a point:

She also doesn't like frosting. This actually isn't so unbelievable, because most frostings on store-bought cakes and cupcakes are teeth-vibratingly sweet. She's very adamant about the fact that she doesn't like frosting.

I was watching K last night while D was out working, and I told her I had to make a Big Gay Cake for my Big Gay Book club. (Well, actually, I just told her it was for my book club.), and she was watching me make the cake, sad that she couldn't have any of it until after the meeting.

I finished the cake part, and said, "OK, now I have to make the frosting." (Side Note: Boxed cake mixes and canned frostings are not allowed in my kitchen unless they're being used in a recipe for something else entirely.) She made the face like she'd eaten something terrible and said, "I don't like frosting!" and I said, "Good thing the cake's not for you." She blinked at me and ran off, singing/chanting with her face all colors of the rainbow, having literally stuck her face in the bowls to lick the remnants of cake batter.

She'd been licking the bowls, spatulas, and beaters and was already pretty hopped up on sugar, so she was literally bouncing around the apartment, making up songs about whatever was going on. ("Sarah's making a cake! La la la la la!! It's got lots of colors!!! La la la la la!!!! I'm going to play Super Nintendo now!!!!! La la la la la!!!!!!)

I mixed the buttercream frosting and she bounced back in, and just watched, eyeing the frosting suspiciously.




She inched closer to it, eyed it, and said, "Me try?" (Yes, she's 7. I'm not sure where the baby talk she occasionally lapses into comes from.) I said she could, and she stuck her finger into the bowl. After she tried it, it was like she had discovered a whole new world.

A whole new sugar-laden world.



Seems she didn't like frosting because she'd never had the good stuff.


Now she's all excited for me to get home from book club, because she wants a full piece (not just bits and pieces) of cake.

Also, this is what I found on our grocery list this morning:



Also, here is the cake, before and after frosting (I'll have a picture of it sliced after book club tonight):



Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The One Where I Don't Have to Compromise

Yes, it's been months. Yes, I'm sorry. No, I don't have a long, substantial entry. Just an observation.

K has been here for the last 8 days, and will be here for the next 6. She has been. . .7 a lot of the time. That is to say, wholly disagreeable.

"Do you want to go to the store with me?"
"No, I don't want to."

"Do you want to have pizza for dinner?"
"No, I don't want to."

"Do you want to check out some library books?"
"No, I don't want to."

Besides that, it's been fine.

The thing that I discovered last night, though, is the little-known secret of parenting, step- or otherwise. With kids, you don't have to compromise, and it's glorious.

Say you're riding along in a car with an adult, whether your partner or otherwise, and they say, "I don't like this song." You would most likely feel compelled to compromise, to find something different that you can both agree on.

With kids, though, you're in charge. Unless you're doing something patently offensive, you can pretty much do whatever you feel like.

I worked the night shift at the library last night, and didn't get off until 9. D decided to go out and work, and so I had to bring K home with me from work. I'd been looking forward to getting back to my audio book on the way home (since it's about a half hour drive, I have plenty of time to listen to audio books) and didn't think I needed to deviate from that plan just because I suddenly had K in the car.

We're riding along for about 10 minutes, and she pipes up from the back, "I don't like this."

"Well," I said, "it's the book I'm listening to right now."

I didn't need to explain. I didn't need to compromise. That was the book I was listening to. Period.

There were no further complaints.

It was awesome.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The One With a Picture

It's Saturday. It's Saturday and I'm working and don't have any interesting stories, but I do have a picture I found on my phone.

Here it is. Take that, hipsters!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The One With Offensive People Reading Books

My apologies to those of you who read this blog in a reader. The html etc. in my last post was messed up in an epic sort of way. I think I got it figured out.

Also, I just realized that, even though they were about a month apart, I began the post before this one and the one before that by talking about how much I love books. Sorry to be repetitive.

When we last met, I told you about offensive books that may or may not actually be offensive. Today is kind of along the same lines, but the offensiveness of the next book in question is more ambiguous. At least, it is to me.
Have you ever had one of those conversations with people that, you THINK you know the other person's opinion on something, but then it turns out you're WAY wrong

Par example, you're talking to someone about American Idol (which. . .I DO NOT WATCH), and the person you're talking to says, "Can you believe the shaggy haired guy?"

Now, their tone of voice leads you to believe that they share your opinion on the shaggy haired guy: that he's the most dreamy, talented man to ever stand behind a microphone. (Note: If there are currently any shaggy haired guys on American Idol, that is just a coincidence. I do not watch.) So you nod emphatically.

Then the other person continues by saying, "Seriously. Don't you have to have some TALENT and SEX APPEAL to be on these shows?"

Whoops.

Had you opened your mouth, the conversation would have ended quite differently, perhaps with a fistfight. Instead, your friend thinks you agree on something, and you know for sure your friend has lousy taste in men.

I think you know the types of conversations I mean. I had one of those today.

This lady and I were discussing banned books, and she said, "Oh, we banned a book once."

I THOUGHT she meant this particular library branch. That someone had complained, and they had removed a book because of it.

"Oh yeah?" I asked, wittily.

"Yeah," she said. "It was this book. . .I think it was called 'Two Princes.' It was about this prince trying to find a princess, but he couldn't find one he liked, and he ended up with another prince. A man."

"Oh," I said, rolling my eyes in a knowing manner. "That's ridiculous." My eyeroll was meant to convey that I, too, thought it was ridiculous that they would ban a book for something as innocuous as a gay king. The misunderstanding of the conversation went both ways, however, as I learned when she continued with, "I know. Can you believe it? A gay king. In a children's book! Once I figured out what was going to happen, I stopped reading the book to my grandchildren immediately!"

Oh.

Oh.

This lady wasn't offended that a book about gay princes had been removed from the library. She was offended there was a book about gay princes written.

"I collected all of them from this library and shipped them off to other branches," she said as she walked away, basking in her own smugness.

. . . . . . .

Apparently, it's in vogue now to promote small-mindedness and lifestyles different than your own. Excellent.

Incidentally, the book she was talking about is King and King by Linda de Haan.



Unfortunately, it looks like that lady won, because we have no copies in the system. But along with the bad, there is some good. The absolute cutest book I think I've seen in life is called "Where's Walrus?" by Stephen Savage. (I'd post a picture, but Blogger is giving me fits today, so you should just click on it to give it a look.) It's about this walrus that escapes from the zoo and hides from the zookeepper by putting on different hats and taking on different jobs. The book has no words, just pictures, but it's awesome. Kind of makes me want to go have a kid so I'd have an excuse to buy it. Maybe next time I'll find something other than books to talk about.

Then Again, Maybe I Won't.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The One With the Offensive Books

I love books.

I think anyone who knows me knows how I feel about books in general, libraries, reading, etc. Love it.

So today, when one of my new co-workers brought up two books that had been "challenged" in the system by people who wanted them removed, I was interested in what other people find offensive.
Book #1 was "It's a Book" by Lane Smith.




The premise of the book is that this monkey is reading a book, and this donkey (introduced in the first couple of pages, actually, as a "jackass") doesn't get that in order to read a book, you don't need all kinds of electronic gadgets.

"How do you scroll down?" asks the donkey.

The monkey replies, "I don't. I turn the page. It's a book."

"Can you make the characters fight?" asks the donkey.

Again, the monkey replies, "No. It's a book."

And on and on. Finally, at the end of the book, the monkey passes over his book to the donkey and then heads out to the library to get another one. "Don't worry!" the donkey calls out. "I'll charge it when I'm done!"

At this point, the mouse that lives under the monkey's hat says, "You don't need to. . ."

And when you turn the page, he finishes his sentence: ". . .it's a book, jackass!"

I laughed when I read that. It was a very funny, very cute, well-illustrated book. The problem? It is categorized in our Easy Reader, picture book section. Call me old-fashioned, call me too PC, say whatever you want, but I agree with whichever patron is it that brought this to our attention.

Can you imagine being up in front of a group of small elementary school-aged kids (and their parents!) and reading this out loud? Admittedly, if you're super-vigilant about what your kids read and you want to avoid profanity (even though yes, I KNOW "jackass" is another word for "donkey." I know this. But the double entendre is clearly intentional), then you should be screening the books beforehand. Sometimes, though, you just can't do that.

My vote on this one? Keep the book in the system (because it really is good), but put it in Juvenile Fiction, or even Adult Humor. Most of the story would go over young kids' heads anyway. (What little kid knows what a blog is? Or Twitter?)

Book #2 was "The Polar Bears Are Hungry" by Carol Carrick.



The story is about a mother polar bear and her cubs looking for hard-to-find food and ending up trying to break into a house to get food, being brought to "bear jail" and then being re-released into the wild. The pictures are beautiful. There is a vague liberal global warming agenda, but while it would be pretty obvious to astute parents, unless a parent wanted to say, "And all this is happening because of X, Y, and Z," kids wouldn't get it. How frightening the book would be would, in all actuality, depend on the tone of voice of the adult reading it.

The person who complained said there were pictures of bears viciously eating seals (not true. It just mentioned the bear was hunting seals. Which. . .they do.); that they "drugged" the bears and sent them to "jail" (true, but not as frightening as the lady made it out to be); and she said that it was "propegating" the "theory" of global warming, which is SO UNTRUE, because everyone smart knows that the Earth has, throughout the years, goes through periods of extreme heat and extreme cold.

I'd like to pause a moment here and comment that, um, did she not just disprove herself? She said the Earth isn't any hotter than it was 20 years ago, but then she goes on to say that the Earth continually gets hotter and colder.

Um?

She suggested that we get rid of every copy of that book in our system and send them back to the publisher, and that we then buy books about the REAL eating habits and habitats of polar bears. Which, I'm pretty sure this book has all of those things.

I guess some people just need to complain and be indignant.

One of my co-workers suggested maybe she just wants us to have copies of books about how polar bears hang out at the North Pole, where it's always frigid, with Santa and his elves.

That made me laugh.

If I haven't bored you enough yet, more about books in my next post, including offensively gay books and the cutest book I've ever read.

So what do you guys think? Should we ban profanity and books about the natural life cycle?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The One Where HarperCollins Hates Libraries

Sorry for the hiatus, y'all. Lots going on, not feeling like talking about most of it.

There comes a time in everyone's life, I think, where you realize that big companies, with their millions of dollars of income every year, are really just out to screw you. I've already said my piece about insurance companies, but now I have a new company upon which to unleash my (completely justified!) bile: HarperCollins.

Most of you know I work in a library. I refer to myself as a librarian even though I haven't found the money to go back for my degree to make it official. But here's one thing I don't need a degree for: I love books. I love books as much as I love food, and you guys know that's a LOT.

When e-Books started being a thing, I worried. I worried that the printed book was going to go out of style in a few years, and I worried that I'd be forced to get an e-Reader just to read the books I love so much.

My house is full of books. There are books everywhere. I'm always reading. Books and reading and all that are all very important aspects of my life.

(I know I'm jumping around here, but I'm getting to the point.)

HarperCollins has decided that they are going to limit the number of times they are going to let libraries check out e-books. I've linked to the letter they posted, but the basic gist of it is that libraries may purchase e-books for check out, but they can only be checked out 26 times. HarperCollins has decided that after these 26 times are used up, the libraries must purchase the books again.

This is. . .infuriating to me. If libraries made a habit of buying books that would only last until they were checked out 26 times, we'd have nothing. We'd have no books on the shelves, and the point of libraries would be moot. HarperCollins is just going for the money. They don't care about getting the books out. They don't care about people reading. They care about the money.

If you go here, you can read a very eloquent open letter to HarperCollins that says everything I'd love to say here, but for some reason, am missing the words to say.

The writer of HarperCollins' "open letter to librarians" said, "Twenty-six circulations can provide a year of availability for titles with the highest demand, and much longer for other titles and core backlist."

Any book that lasts just a year? Has no room in a library. And if e-readers are the wake of the future and all that, why would you make it so hard for someone to get books on it? Why are you punishing people who maybe don't like holding books, but who like reading? (Like people who, up until this point, maybe used audio books.)

It seems that many libraries are boycotting HarperCollins or HarperCollins' e-books or whatever. I've got a whole list of things I'm boycotting, so maybe we just need to add HarperCollins to that list.

I'm not suggesting they give unlimited views for one price forever, but 26 views? Ridiculous.

What do you think? I think HarperCollins is all about how much money the can eke out of libraries who already are having to cut their budgets way, way down, and who just want to provide an inexpensive service to their patrons. I'm not saying we should get anything for free. But be reasonable, HarperCollins. All you're doing is pissing off the people who use you the most.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The One With the Craigslist Postings

I kind of love craigslist. I've sold things on there, and although I've never actually purchased anything from the site, we did get our IKEA loveseat from there, free. It has a rip in the cushion, but if you flip the cushion over, it looks fine.

A few months back (actually, more than a year ago), D was looking for some freelance stuff on craigslist. Cary is a town not too terribly far from where we were living at the time, so when he came across this ad, he had to respond:

Need pro quality pics of "guys standing still"

I am lead singer of a hard rock band in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area, and we are looking to hire a professional photographer to take pics for our upcoming first cd. We are planning on hitting the scene hard, playing all the major rock venues in the area, and eventually getting our album in the hands of the top record producers in LA.

But first, before we can do this, we need to have some hard-edged images taken of us to put in our album, fliers, and posters. We have looked at many photographs of the most successful local bands, and have found that they all have really cool pics of all the band members standing still, looking badass into the camera. Usually the most important member of the band is up front (the lead singer, which is "I") and usually the least important person, being the drummer, in the back. I wouldnt mind having a few hot chicks in it too, but as long as you cant see their faces bc most of them are a little busted in the face.

Since only a few of us are tatted out, either the photographer could photoshop some hardcore tats on our chests and forearms, or they could use body parts from other "less successful" bands that they have already shot. Its ok to have one or two of us sitting on the ground, or in a really cool old chair (this could be a great idea for our band bc our bassist is a lanky tall odd looking ginger dude ). We are all in our mid to late thirties, so being able to do age-reducing photoshop on us, add a little hair to one or two of us, and give us cool emo-style doos (possible a cool Adam Lambert-esque style hairdo would make me look edgy and relevent), is a must.

As for location, it is up to the photographer. Just really want to emphasize we need it to look badass! So run down environment (Cant be at any of our houses bc we live in apartments in Cary), rugged/vintage look, but most importantly, they REALLY REALLY need to have us standing up, looking straight into the camera. Hot band chicks in it, a nice plus - NO FATTIES.

We will discuss compensation when you contact us with your ideas, rates, and availability. We are under a limited budget, but when we get our album in the hands of the big LA execs, this will be a great way for a local talented artist to get their foot in the door, not to mention, become our official photographer.

BTW, our band is called ..... DEAD HORSE, the album is called ..... BEAT A DEAD HORSE
PLEASE INCLUDE A LINK TO YOUR WEBSITE OR SOMEWHERE IN WHICH THE GUYS AND I CAN SEE EXAMPLES OF YOUR WORK AND MAKE SURE THEY HAVE THE REQUIRED AMOUNT OF BADASS WE ARE LOOKING FOR


Um. . .this might be the most awesome thing I've read in the history of life. All of the spelling and punctuation is from the original posting, which I have saved in my e-mail for an occasion such as this. There's nothing not awesome about this, from the fact that they want tattoos photoshopped on them to the fact that the drummer is a tall, weird-looking ginger dude to the fact that they want hot chicks, but none that are busted in the face.

Interesting fact: To this day, I use the expression "busted in the face" solely due to this posting.

So there's that.

Then there's another one I found a couple days ago that just made me laugh.

Looking for an experienced Mexican lady

Looking for an experienced Mexican lady who can cook Mexican food and also hot dogs, french fries, hamburgers etc in a grocery grill near Oxford.
Need someone who is hardworking, honest, clean and dependable.
Part time hours available leading to Full-time.


I don't even really know what to say about this one. I'm not sure what kind of experience they want in their Mexican lady, but I hope they find it.

So what about you guys? Any craigslist weirdness you've come across?

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The One With the Crying

I have a really embarrassing problem.

I cry. Like, a lot.

I've done it since I was a kid, and it made my parents nuts.

"Sarah. . .STOP crying," was pretty much something I heard all the time. It wasn't like I was doing it on purpose, though, and I know this because the trait has stalked followed me into adulthood.

I cried when I was having a bad day. I cried when I was frustrated. I cried when I thought someone might possibly be looking at me wrong. I cried for no real good reason at all.

This has also frustrated people I've dated, who I've fought with. I'll get into some kind of impassioned discussion, or a fight, and I'd cry. Not because I was sad, and not because I was upset. . .it's just because, for whatever reason, when I'm put into stressful situations, I'll cry, even if there's no cause for tears.

This took D a while to get used to, I think. Because if there's even the first hint of unpleasant conversation, I'll cry. And then I get frustrated that I'm crying, and that makes me cry more. And it's all downhill from there. Even once I calm down, if a conversation along the same lines is begun too soon after I manage to finish crying, I'll start again.

The reason this is so frustrating is actually kind of three-fold. One, once I start, it's really hard to stop, and that makes conversation pretty much impossible.

Two, it accomplishes nothing, and I just look like one of those people who cries to get their way. I've been pulled over by cops a few times, and let me tell you this: I've cried every time, and I've gotten a ticket every time. So it's not like it helps me. If I were doing it on purpose, I would have stopped by now, because it does not work.

Third, it just makes me look pathetic. This is kind of an offshoot of number two, but really, I just look pathetic, like I'm crying to try to get my way. I'm NOT. It just happens.

I called my insulin pump supply company this morning, because I'm almost out of supplies. The back story here is that I called their financial assistance people almost a month ago, and it's been one giant game of phone tag since then. When I finally got someone on the phone, he told me that because I'm employed part-time, they couldn't help me. Predictably, I cried.

I called today to order some and see if they'd let me pay for half a box today and half of it on my next payday. (The back story HERE is that I can only afford one box of 24 tube things at a time, at about $140 per box. However, those people with no insurance, like myself, have to pay for them upfront. They won't bill you later for it.)

Unfortunately, I don't HAVE $140 to spend on pump supplies right now. I have rent money and half a box of supplies money, but that's about it.

So I called and asked, and the lady was like, "No. We can't do that."

So, of course, I cried. But I at least asked to speak to her supervisor. Not because of her, but I figured someone higher than her might be able to help me.

I was on hold for a little while, and managed to regain my composure while I was waiting for her to pick up.

When she did pick up, I immediately started to cry again. It's SO. EMBARRASSING. It's embarrassing, and I wish I knew how to stop it.

(If you're wondering the ending to this story, she did allow me to do the pay half now, pay half later thing. But now I have this fear that, on my account, they've made a note that says, "Cries. A LOT.")

So that's the story. I've done it my whole life, and I want to know how to stop. Because it's annoying. And embarrassing.

Thoughts?

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The One Where I'm Angry and a Little Political

I don't generally discuss politics here, first of all, because I don't pay attention to it and therefore don't want to sound ignorant, talking about things I know nothing about. Secondly, because a lot of times, it's just unpleasant.

But here's the thing.

Our government here is doing such a bang-up job of screwing everyone over, I feel compelled to talk about it.

The first thing on the list: Old, fat, white men screwing with women's reproductive system.

In Georgia, Rep. Bobby Franklin has (re!) introduced a bill to make it a felony to have a miscarriage if the mother can't prove that there was no "human involvement." The miscarriage would be re-defined as "pre-natal murder" unless the woman can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that no outside source had anything to do with it.

OK, Rep. Franklin you pretentious bastard. Are you aware that between 10 and 15 percent of pregnancies can end in a miscarriage? Are you aware that there are many, many more than even that that take place before a woman is even pregnant? Oftentimes (not always, but often), the body miscarries a pregnancy because there is something terribly wrong with the fetus. The baby wouldn't have made it anyway, so it's nature's way of taking care of those types of things.

What if an unsuspectingly pregnant woman is, say, 3 weeks pregnant. Let's say she goes out and has a glass of wine. Say she then, a week later, miscarries the pregnancy she didn't know she had. She feels weird, so she goes to the doctor, and then doctor's like, "Oh, BTW. You were pregnant."

Is that her fault? Would Rep. Douchebag Franklin's bill say that because she had that glass of wine, and it COULD HAVE caused a miscarriage, she's to blame? What if it would have terminated itself anyway? How could you possibly know?

What infuriates me about this is that it's a man proposing this bill. A man that will never, not even once in his life, know what it's like to lose a pregnancy, a child you were waiting for and hoping for that, for whatever reason, just wasn't meant to carry to term. You could argue that maybe his wife could experience that (except I don't think he's married. . .I couldn't find that anywhere) but he himself will never have to go through that.

For even suggesting this should be a thing, for even putting it out there for people to have to look at and think about, Rep. Assface Franklin should be kicked out of politics and never allowed to return.

Admittedly, yes. There are people who do really, really dumb stuff when they're pregnant. People who go through with the pregnancy, but go out and knock back a few at the bar every night, people who do hard drugs, people who continue to smoke through their pregnancy. THOSE are the people that need going after. The people who don't? Those people who just go about their day and, for whatever reason, have their bodies turn against them.

Next: The potential cutting of of funding for Planned Parenthood.

I'm sure this subject has been all over the blog world, and all over everywhere, but I have been avoiding it. I've been avoiding it because I find it so hard to accept that people are just so damn ignorant.

It's the anti-abortion people who are all up into this bill. (Note: I don't have a real, honest-to-God opinion on the subject. Not like Justin Bieber, who feels abortion is wrong, even in cases of rape, because "everything happens for a reason." I think that, if you don't want kids, you need to do everything in your power to avoid conceiving them, but that in some cases, yeah, abortion is the option you might need to take. Doesn't mean I'd run out and get one myself, but I (unlike the Biebs) know that I can't have a legit opinion on something I don't have any experience with. (Another note: He does say at the end of that interview that he doesn't know about it, so he can't really talk about it, but that was after he made his ridiculous comments. If he knows he doesn't know anything about it, he should probably, you know, not say anything about it. But I digress.)

Anyway, the fact is, only about 3% of what PP does is abortion-related, and none of that (by law) is funded by government money. So you're not actually cutting down on any abortions paid for by the government at all if you get rid of PP. You're getting rid of pap smears, mammograms ,STD testing, birth control options, cancer screenings. . .basically a lot of the things that low-income people need to keep themselves reproductively and breastily healthy.

They're basically voting to get rid of all of the pregnancy prevention options PP offers. So that will account for more unwanted pregnancies which will lead to. . .yeah. MORE abortions. And probably unsafe ones. Because if these women have nowhere to go, and they're desperate, my guess is that they're going to do whatever they have to to stop the pregnancy. So then you're just going to have a lot of ill women and some really messed up kids running around. And a lot of them will, most likely, need government funding anyway because they weren't ready to have a kid, especially not a kid with special needs (due to the ill-fated pregnancy termination attempts) and. . .do you see where I'm going with this?

We do not live in a Christian nation. This is a fact. Our Founding Fathers were not all God-fearing Christians as we often portray them. We're allowing the fundamentalism of a religion, not a national religion, but just a big one, make laws. Doesn't seem fair to me. Also doesn't seem fair to me that all of the pregnancies that could have been avoided if people had proper care that resulted in unwanted children will result in. . .children who are unwanted, and treated as such.

I'm getting ranty and stabby right now, so I'm going to stop.

What I would like to do is to ask the gentlemen (and ladies!) in Washington and the people in Georgia to please keep their agendas and hands off of my ovaries.

Thank you.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The One With the Florists

I got another anonymous comment the other day. On the entry about My First Flamer, Mr. or Ms. (my money's on Ms.) Anonymous eloquently said, "This is so dumb."

I'm not sure if the entry was considered dumb or the comment I was writing about was dumb. Either way, I thought to myself, "Self, why put up with it? Why give anonymous jerks the opportunity to be anonymous jerks?" So I took the anonymous comment option off.

Moving on.

I have a story after which I'll ask a question. A question about loyalty. I'd be interested to know other people's opinions.

D and I have a friend, who I'll call Dave. Dave owns a flower shop in a small town. Dave was in a car accident a couple years ago, leaving him paralyzed from (I believe) the neck down. He worked his way toward being completely self-reliant, being able to walk, and still being able to run his shop. He's a friend, but he's also one of D's clients, for whom D has done some signage and some business cards.

Apparently, about a year ago, Dave had a woman working with him (we'll call her Fran) who approached him about selling outdoor plants. Dave doesn't sell outdoor plants, and doesn't know anything about selling outdoor plants, so he let her set up shop outside his shop, sell her plants, and keep all the money from it. He also taught her everything he knows about indoor flowers: making bouquets, the care and keeping of flowers, arrangements, stuff like that.

After she stopped working for him, a few months passed, and she came back, asking if she could rent Dave's shop. Dave's response was, basically, "Um. . .NO!?" So then she tells him that she's renting a shop of her own. . .directly across the street. This woman opened a florist shop across the street from the florist shop that had taught her how to BE a florist.

Pretty bitchy, right?

So here comes the morally sketchy part of it. At least, the morally sketchy part of it that has something to do with me.

I was in the neighborhood of Dave's shop earlier today (having just had a nannying interview) (stop laughing), and so I stopped by to see if the signs D had done for him pre-Valentine's Day had helped generate any business. Dave wasn't there because he was out doing a delivery, so I told the girl behind the counter to tell him I'd stopped by.

As I'm driving away, I look at the new florist across the street and decide (because I'm by myself and bored) to do some reconnaissance. I walk into the shop (which is pretty bare, but cheerful-looking enough) and Fran's there. She and I are the only ones in the shop.

She asks if she can help me, and I do not lie. I tell her I'm getting married at some point and was stopping by florists today. (This is true. I'm getting married. . .some day, and I HAD stopped by a florist prior to stopping by HER florist shop, so no lies here.)

She immediately starts telling me that she hasn't done MANY weddings, but that she has done a few, and gives me some ideas. She asks me questions like how many people, how many family members, what colors, and so on.

And I find myself. . .really liking her. To the point where, when she admitted she didn't have a Web site, I almost told her my fiance does sites and she should give him a call. But then I thought, maybe not the best idea, since he does a lot of work for Dave.

Also, this trip had the added effect of making me really, really want a real wedding. Not a big one, but a wedding nonetheless. But I know that if we wait to get married until we can afford a real wedding, it'll be ANOTHER year, maybe more, that we'll stay in Engaged Limbo, and I'll risk becoming like Pam Beesly on "The Office." So that's frustrating. Wanting that day, but not being able to afford it in the least.

But my question is this: How crappy would it be, knowing the story and knowing what happened, to do business with her, either by buying flowers for my fictional wedding or by recommending her to D? What she did was pretty underhanded, but she seems to like doing what she's doing.

I don't know, but I'm feeling morally ambiguous.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The One With Traffic Court

Happy February, everyone! I finally took all of my Christmas decorations down today, and the living room is looking bright and cheerful and decidedly not Christmasy.

You guys? I have a confession to make. Back in December, I got a ticket. Not for speeding (stop pretending to be shocked), but because my tag was expired. I'd had my inspection done, but the tag wasn't up to date. It cost less than $50 to do, but every month, it literally came down to "Am I going to buy insulin this month, or am I going to update my tag?" After I got the ticket, D paid for the tag for me. So now I'm good until July.

So anyway, I got this ticket back in December and I had to wait until yesterday for my court date. I've gotten tickets before. Not including this last one (which wasn't actually a ticket, per se, but a citation), I've had 3 tickets. My very first one was for making a right on red when the sign said not to, and the other ones were speeding tickets. (For some reason, I don't ever remember to slow down a little around the holidays when the cops are out in FULL FORCE.)

Any time I've gotten a ticket in the past, I've just paid it and the court costs. The first one, I got an hour and a half from home, the second was about two and a half hours from home, and the third was about an hour from home. It was better for me to just pay them, because I was working full time at the time and didn't have the time to drive to the county where I got the ticket to appeal it. And I haven't, until December, had a ticket since 2009.

Since I'm not working full time currently, I had the time to go to court yesterday. The ticket said to be at the courthouse at 7:45 (A.M.!!), so we set out about half an hour before that and, blessedly, made it on time.

Up until this point, I'd been freaking out. Whenever I get pulled over, I cry. Not because I think it'll help my case, but because I can't help it. I cry when I get the least bit stressed out, not because I'm sad or upset, but just because that's what happens. And believe me, it does not endear me to anyone. (Clearly, considering my ticket history.) I was worried I'd get up in front of a judge and be like, "I. . .um. . .I wanted to see if I could. . .get. . .mercy of the court?" and then I'd cry.

I'd cry while explaining why I hadn't done it, I'd cry while explaining that I'd had it done the next day because someone had paid for it for me, and I'd cry when they told me to stop crying.

So I dressed professionally, trying not to look like someone that did stuff like this all the time. I looked it up online, trying to figure out what was going to happen, trying to prepare myself to be cuffed and thrown to the ground if I didn't answer a question properly. I put a book in my bag in case I was waiting a long time. (Granted, I don't think pulling out a book in court would have been the smartest thing I'd ever done, but I like to be prepared.) I also put a granola bar in my bag in case it took a long time and my blood sugar went low.

I'm pretty much freaking out on the trip over there, and going through the security station didn't help. The wand beeped on me (like it always does) and I explained to the guard that it was an insulin pump. Nothing else made it go off, but I had a Sarah Moment when I couldn't get the belt on my jacket untied because I was wearing gloves. Then I tried taking one of the gloves off, but apparently, it's also difficult to untie a belt with one free hand.

Then I got in line.

There was a line of about 25 people in front of me when I got there. I checked in and got in line behind this guy who was probably 3 or 4 years younger then me, dressed to the nines in a suit and tie. He looked nervous. I knew the feeling.

I watched people get their name called and go up to the DA and get directed into a courtroom. Some other people got a court date of March 1 when they had to come back, and I was trying to figure out the rhyme and reason behind the people who got sent into the courtroom and the people who had to come back next month.

Finally, it was my turn (and actually, I say finally, but this whole process probably took 10 to 15 minutes). I gave my citation to the DA with visions of crying in front of judges and trying to explain myself to mean-looking police officers. He asked if I had proof of getting the tag updated. I handed that to him.

Then he said, "OK, charges have been dismissed. Have a wonderful day."

Wait.

What?

No court? No judge? No sloppily running mascara rolling down my face? Nothing going on my permanent record and having potential employers say, "Oh, I see you didn't update your license plate at the end of 2010. Sorry. Next!"

That was it.

I walked out into downtown and called D to tell him I was done.

And instead of going to jail, we went to McDonald's.

And that's my story. I guess I'm now an ex-con. I should go get a tattoo of barbed wire around my arm.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The One With My First Flamer

I woke up this morning to a guy (I'm assuming) painting the outside of the front window to our apartment building. That window happens to lead into the bedroom, so whenever they're doing work out there, I can hear it first thing.

They actually replaced all the (rotting) wood around the window a couple months ago, and left it looking all cracked and awful, so it was nice to see hear that they were finally fixing it. I looked toward the window and saw the silhouette of a man holding a paintbrush, so I'm hoping that's what was going on.

That wasn't the weird thing, though. He had a little radio out there, and I'm not 100% on what he was listening to, but it sounded like fairies. You know, the windchimes and tiny bells sound of a fairy flying. Search as I might, I couldn't find anything on YouTube that sounded like this music. It was very relaxing, very zen, and a little weird.

The only thing weirder is what happened a few minutes later, when it sounded like the workers outside started having a Mexican fiesta/rumble. You know the stereotypical "eye-yi-yi-yi!" shouts that you hear sometimes? THEY WERE DOING THAT! And it sounded like they were dancing around.

I just don't know.


So the actual point of today's entry is that I got my first flamer, and I'm oddly excited about it. (Note: I mean 'flamer' in the 'causing trouble on the Internet' sort of way. Not the homosexual way. I'm well versed in the gays, thanks.)

If you will recall my entry on the day I discovered that I had proof that Justin Bieber is Satan, I had a very convincing argument. And the people who responded seemed to understand exactly what I was saying.

One person who posted a comment, very cleverly named "Anonymous," disagreed. I'd like to explain that I don't mind detracting opinions, and if you write a comment disagreeing with something I've said, I'll still post it. I do, however, have a problem with anonymous comments. If you have an opinion, you need to stand behind your opinion. The Internet makes it ENTIRELY too easy to be a coward. So that's why, instead of putting the comment through, I put it here instead.

Yesterday, at 4:03 PM, Anonymous said: Shut the hell up guys!!!!!!!!!! Theres nothing wrong with that Kid Hes nice and very sweet hes trying to live him dream is there anything wrong with that i think not!!! STUPIDD!!!! dont Judge him you dont even know him Hoee!! You guys are all just jealous of him be nice!!!!!!

I could do what I did to an ex-boyfriend of mine's really nasty note and correct all the punctuation and grammatical errors with red ink and return it, but I won't do that. Instead, I'll focus on the fact that we (the non-Biebites) are being told that we don't know him, so we can't have an opinion.

For one, I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that whomever wrote this haunting missive also doesn't know The Bieb. That she (I'm assuming it's a she) doesn't KNOW that he's nice and very sweet. And while I'll GIVE her the fact that he's living his dream and that no, there's nothing in the world wrong with that, I WOULD argue that I'm (we're) not judging him, per se. Judging someone and thinking someone is a talentless monkey are two different things.

While I do admit to liking that one song, the rest of his stuff, in my ALWAYS humble opinion, is crap. My opinion. Not judging. Just my personal taste.

My next to last comment is that I have NEVER understood why, when people don't like someone, or think they look like a lesbian and sound like a 12-year-old girl, people say they're jealous. Am I jealous that he's a world-famous singer? No. I don't want to be a world-famous singer. Am I jealous that he has the love and adoration of a million 12-year-old girls AND their 40-year-old mothers? No. That's super creepy. I'm not jealous of him, even a little. I do not like him. Period. Anything I've ever heard about him annoys me.

It's like Matthew McCaughnahay or HOWEVER YOU SPELL IT. I don't like him because he comes across as smug and douchey and completely untalented. Does this mean I'm jealous? No. He's just not someone I would want to be around.

And finally, I don't think ever in my life has someone, in all seriousness, called me a hoe.
Actually, in all fairness, she called me a HOEE. I'm ASSUMING she meant a ho. So rather than a farm implement, I think this is what she was trying to convey:

That's not right either?

Oh, I get it. I'm someone who has sex with lots and lots of men because I don't (with the exception of one song) like the "musical" "stylings" of BeelzeBieb. Gotcha. I'll let D know. It'll make him sad.

So there it is. My first Anonymous hate mail. (Or, hate comment). It was kind of awesome. Thanks, Anonymous.

And everyone else, take heed of Ms. Anonymous' words: be nice!!!!!!

Also, watch this, because it will make your collective ovaries explode (even for you men):