I would like it if my 12 cup coffee maker would actually make 12 cups. Instead the resevoir only holds 10 cups... but the pot says 12. And then it brews about 9.3 cups, causing me to have to add some water at the end so it is not black sludge and making me wonder where the other 0.7 cups of water went to. This is related to the12 hot dogs in a package and only 8 buns in a package... leaving four extra freaking buns to deal with.
I would like it if people didn't have to pay for things to appreciate them. Because when something is free it is taken for granted - and taking it away or asking someone to pay suddenly causes great offense.
I'd like to see Canada come up with a better health care system. (This is not so subtly related to the above point) We can't keep giving it away free.... nor do we want to Americanize it and have people declaring bankruptcy because of medical bills. What is so horribly wrong with letting someone who CAN pay for health care just pay for it?? Does that not open up another spot in line for the ones who can't pay? Don't you think that would ease the burden a bit, maybe even allow some doctors to make more money so they'd stick around for a while? Case in point: My boss has problem 'X' and so does his wife. He is diagnosed and then several months later she gets tested and is also diagnosed. They are both scheduled for surgery. Turns out that hers is worse than his... he asks to switch surgery dates so that his wife can get more timely treatment.
They wouldn't let them switch. Nope, no line jumping for you... please remain in line and only leave if... you know... you die or something. Then hey... there's an open spot for the next person in line!
I would like it if more people could disagree without treating the other person as an enemy. I'm as stubborn and mule-like as the next redhead, but it is tiring to fight battles all day long. If someone is your enemy - squash him like a bug... but if someone is just disagreeing with you, get a life and move on.
Just reading the news reports about the Louisiana highway being packed with residents trying to leave and the city offering shelter in the Superdome makes me nervous for the people down there. Major Man used to be stationed at Camp Shelby, which, I believe is at the south end of Mississippi - also within the storm's projected path.
Now I have been thinking about a certain person who lives just outside Camp Shelby in Hattiesburg, MS. It's Major Man's ex-girlfriend of all people. The one that phoned me up last Halloween to call me all sorts of nasty names.
And call me a totally nutter... but I get concerned for the people down there, and yes, it includes her! I asked him yesterday if maybe he should call her, but he said that no, she would be fine, she's lived there her whole life.
Ok, so I'll let it go, but I will still keep her in my prayers, dammit, even if she did call me a trashy so-and-so.
As the world turns.....
There are many days when I consider making the leap... afterall I managed to do it for a bit and stay home with my son until he was two and a half. But we had no money. SO, out of a desire to not raise my son in a cardboard box, I took a Real Job. Thankfully I have a good Real Job that I like and I make enough money to stay above the poverty line.
But there is always that desire to do what you LOVE, to do what leaves you fulfilled in the long run. And I say 'in the long run' because I don't think that there is anything in this world that doesn't have it's ups and downs. There are many moments when I feel just like Shelley's post said.. I feel as though every thing I write is crap and I'll never write another word. But overall it is fulfilling.
One day soon I will take that leap...
And while we are at it... this is a great post about how to combat hatemail. Not that I get any, LOL, but I love to read blogs of people who do!
But then I stopped laughing. Here's an article published in the Arab News 'The Middle East's Leading English Language Daily defending the Islamic belief that it is ok to beat your wife, but hey, only if you use your hands.
Allow me to quote, "It is quite obvious here that Islam adopts a gradual approach starting with verbal admonishment of the wife, then seeks a period of refraining from conjugal relations and, finally, if the husband finds the situation very serious, he may strike his disobedient wife."
Can someone explain this to me?
I've heard the lines about how the Old Testament dictates how many wives someone can have and the punishments husbands were to dole out to children and wives alike... but unfortunately those lines are usually laid out by people who have not actually studied the bible. If they did they would realize the inherent difference between the Old and New Testaments. The NEW TESTAMENT is what God wants us to follow, the OLD TESTAMENT is ... well, it's kind of a like a story about what the world was like before Jesus entered it.
I'm hoping the whole Islamic beating your wife thing is the same.
Nomennovum said "Believe me, you all say "eh," whether you realize it or not ... and, even if you don't, it's implied." This is often the case. Major Man points out that I often substitute 'Hey' for 'eh'... but it is purty much the same durn thing.
But I might point out, Nomennovum, that your college roomate was from ONTARIO. The most definitely say EH there a lot... that is also the home of ABOOT. Since Calgary is one of the fastest growing cities in Canada, we have a lot of non-Calgarians here... I always try figure out if a waiter or waitress is 'not frum 'round here' by the accent they have. I kick butt on the Ontario accent spotting.
You may notice that I do not actually HAVE a life.
But good point about the bathroom/washroom thing. I actually paused while writing that one to figure out which term was US and which was Canuck... obviously I chose the wrong one. LOL
Major Man has some friends back home in Indiana that make it a holiday sport to pick on me and the words I use. The problem is that Canadians are very self depracating (and not, I might add, self depreciating as I once mis-spoke) and we have much more fun laughing at our own goofy selves than at anyone else.
Except the weather. The weather is not funny. Especially today when it is EIGHT degrees outside. That's celsius so... pause while I find an online temperature converter... 46 F.
Whenever we would stop somewhere I would look at the people around us and marvel that there was nothing different from them than from us.
Well, there were a few things. There are more Hispanic people in the US and more Asian people here in Canada. The washrooms were dirtier at the restaurants I stopped at... and speaking of those... I have never been talked to in the washrooms as much in the Canada as I was in the US.But I was a little scared.
These were AMERICANS. Their country has a large ARMY that would protect them. It has a Might Makes Right mentality and a Capitalistic drive. My country is soft and squishy where theirs is ripped and toned.
(Well, maybe not so much, I did notice that people were a bit heavier down there... but then again the percentage is probably the same - it's just they have ten times more people)
And the whole time I kept thinking... what would they do if they found out I was *gasp* Canadian? Because then I'd have to get all defensive and explain that we're not ALL liberals and we don't ALL say 'eh' and they would answer the way MOST answer... with laughter in their voices.Is Canada that... funny?I have learned one thing though... Canada is much colder.
Don't laugh, I know what you are thinking.
But the middle of winter is cold whether you are in Indiana or Alberta. However, the summer is where you will notice the difference.
This past week, in the middle of August, we had a frost warning at night. FROST. In AUGUST. Then it was followed the next weekend by hot, scorching, burning weather.
That is not funny.
I wasn't in the greatest mood this afternoon as I'd been home with my sick son all day. So when World Health and Fitness called to try book the appointment to view the club I said yes, after 8pm, when my son goes to bed. After all, I'd downloaded the little gift certificate and given my phone number and permission to call... so I might as well go. I used to be a member of this particular gym but moved away and I have been thinking that I need to go to the gym because let's face it, my belly is more jiggly than it used to be.
Lance, gym guy, was not so enthusiastic to see me. It seem since I used to be a member he figured that I had seen everything before.
Lance: "...and here we have these new machines, they are really, like cool and have these weights so you can start really light if you wanted."
Me: Uh-huh (inside head: I used to break two year old colts and heave hay bales over my head dude, plus I have lugged a child around on my hip. I'm not a wimp.)
Lance: "...and here's the free weight area..."
Me: "Yeah, my fiance wanted me to check this area out for him."
Lance: "oh? Does he want to sign up too?"
Me: "Well, I want to discuss it with him after I know the price schedule, plus I need to discuss when I have time for the gym... I mean neither of us want me to sign up unless I know I can come three times a week." (Inside head: I'm not buying tonight, quit looking at me like I'm money to you and I'm very concerned about having enough time for this!)
Lance: "oh! Three times a week, that's easy, right?"
Me: "Well, actually it isn't that easy. I usually have my hands full with work and my son." (Inside head: WRONG thing to say bucko who probably lives at the gym and gets a free membership.. you try working full time and part time and raise a son and get some sleep at night and tell me how EASY it is to take an hour out of your day. Dick.)
Lance: "Oh! Well we have a day care here and..."
Me: "I'm not picking my son up from a day at day care and dropping him off at another one." (Inside head: you obviously have no children.)
A few more minutes go by as he shows me the different areas and then we get to the little chairs where he assumes now that we are going to sign me up. Keep in mind that by this time I have hinted at least three times that I want to discuss the membership with my fiance. I know it is my decision but I'll be honest, it's mostly a delay tactic because I don't want to sign up impulsively.
Lance: "Here are the various packages..." blah blah blah... we go over the different packages..."so, you would be most interested in this one?"
Me: "Yeah, I think that I'd be most interested in that one when..."
Lance: interrupting...."So, that's the one then!"
Me: "No. I am not signing up tonight. I need to go home and discuss this with my fiance before I commit." (Inside head: are you thick? And yes, I see the small hint of enthusiasm suddenly bleed out of your eyes because you realize that I'm not a quick money grab for you tonight.)
Lance: "You mean he wouldn't support you in something like this?"
Me: stunned pause while I realize that he has suddenly questioned my relationship and my personal choices about my own finances. "Yes, he would support me in any decision I truly believed in, but I respect him enough to consider his opinions before I make a committment to sign up for this." (Inside head: oh, now you are in for it you arrogant ass... what did you want me to say 'you are SO right. you know, I should just sign up for the extra-expensive package with the personal trainer and if he doesn't just accept my decision... well... well... I just shouldn't marry him. I mean my health is important right! Sign me up!')
I punctuate this sentence by smiling my 'F-U' smile and my tone has certainly made him aware that I did not appreciate that last tactic. I inquire about my 10 day pass... no can-do, I'm a previous member.
Basically I give him the 'don't call me, I'll call you' brush off and leave feeling like I do not rank on his pitiful little scale because obviously I'm a stupid little girl who has to ask her boyfriend before she does anything.
But it was such a nice gym. Dammit.
On the weekend we went go-karting with some family members. In no particular order:
'OTHER MARK and JODIE'
(she's due December 31st!)
And of course me and my son:
Those fancy blue things? They are little hair net thingys so that you don't share all your head germs with everyone else. V. attractive.
I think he had fun!
1. I LOVE Coronation Street. There is something about the reality of the people on that show. None of them are gorgeous and they are all faulty somehow. I'm an ADDICT.
2. I had plastic surgery once. Oh it wasn't on my face ... it was on ONE THIGH. See when I was 16 and just learning how to ride young horses I got bucked off and stepped on. The horse planted a hind foot on the back of my thigh (thank goodness it was the squishiest part of my body!!) and launched himself away from me. That left some serious scar tissue and a lump that stopped me from wearing shorts for a long time. I never got it fixed because I was always riding horses and couldn't take any time off. But last spring I booked the surgery and let me tell you it was THE most painful thing - other than childbirth - that I've ever gone through.
3. I think military guys are hot. Especially mine. Ok, maybe you knew that already... I chose mine in 1996 when I was walking through the Adriatic Sea on the coast of Italy because I could see that he and the rest of his group had short army haircuts and army t-shirt tan lines. I am the girl that Army Romance Novels were written for.
4. I have always wanted to be a war correspondant. I was glued to the TV during the first Gulf War. I still want to go.
5. My parents divorced when I was in Grade Two and the first person I told was Mr. Finlay, my teacher. He sat with me on the bench outside our classroom and listened. I remember for the first time thinking "I am growing up. Now."
6. I'm a book collector. Oh, you knew that already... well I am a true addict. When I want to feel good/better/calm/relaxed I go buy a book. It doesn't matter if I read it in the next year, it makes me feel better to buy it.
7. I support politicians with my vote only. I support industries I care about with my money. Yet I do not think that anyone is in charge of supporting me - except me.
8. I believe that feminism's time has passed and the lack of traditional roles in our society is hurting us now.
9. I will return to college before I am 40. I will get a degree. Because.
10. I loved Major Man the first time I spoke to him. That was 9 years, 74 days ago. May 30th, 1996. He is the hero in every romance novel I've ever read and the prince in every fairy tale of my youth.
It seems that my days and my nights get eaten up with Things To Do and I never get to my list of Things I Want To Do. First up on that list is reading.
I do have a rule that I read before bed. Somedays I get around that rule - like the days I fall asleep in my son's bed after reading two books with him. Technically I read before I fell asleep. (This happens at least twice I week, you should know)
I am not kidding you when I say I have at least 25 unread, brand new books in my house.
Ok, enough blogging from me... I am going to go read RIGHT NOW.
In looking for new reading material on the internet, I have come across numerous blogs by women who are good writers and communicate fairly well. But I have also seen A LOT of nastiness on the 'net.
Most often nastiness comes out in the commenters. There are surf-by trolls, stalkers, know it alls, judgers, and down right nasty b!tches out there. But just as often I have seen women use their blogs as a fountain of nastiness. Of course this makes it easy to just surf away and never return, but it begs the question of WHY??
I have a feeling that there are a lot of women bloggers out there using their blogs to vent their venom because they have no other outlet in their real lives. Because there is no way anyone will ever convince me that these women speak like this in real life.
That's the thing about blogs. They are a one way communication tunnel void of any sort of responsibility. They never have to face people and say the words they type and they never have to face any sort of consequence. I have followed (as a matter of research, of course) several online battles where women act no older than highschool girls.
Because there are online communities out there that are no more than little clique-y groups of women who gang up on those that oppose them and basically harass them until the bigger party grows up. I've seen comments about someone's education, how much money they make, suppositions about why someone is 'screwed up' or their marital status, their 'issues'. It's all so judgemental that it pains me to read it.
It's not that I have never sinned in this arena. I have. I believe that someone recently pointed out that I was in fact wearing my 'asshat' around the internet... and I couldn't disagree. It's why I began to go looking for positive things to read and to see just what was out there that I might be missing.
(The links on the right there ---> are REALLY GOOD ONES)
But it does not seem that many people are very adept at saying "I like the colour blue" without writing it like "I like the colour blue and those who like the colour green are so stupid they should be sterilized and don't even get me started on yellow because those people have issues."
It's blogging diarrhea, that's what is out there. You don't have to look very far.
So I have a challenge for those of you considering blogging, try to use it as a force for good rather than evil.
Today is my son's fourth birthday.
Last night I realized that his dad's sister was in town and his 'other' grandmother was home for the day. So I phoned and offered M. to them for his birthday. They came and picked him up last night and will not drop him back to me until tomorrow. Which means for his whole entire fourth birthday I will not see him or the little blonde hairs on his head. I'm incredibly sad and pitiful feeling at the moment.
I made myself do it though because the alternative was that I would see him for half an hour in the morning and then ship him off to day care. Then I'd see him for 45 minutes at night while I drove him to his dad's house.
Instead he will spend his day being coddled and loved by an aunt and a grandma, he'll go to the circus during the day instead of at 7 pm at night like they had planned so he'll enjoy it more.
But I will not see him today.
I called him this morning and spent five minutes on the phone talking about what he was doing and telling him I loved him and then saying 'bye!' repeatedly in different voices.
I feel jealous of those families that got it right the first time. The ones that are whole and happy and never have to worry about who gets what time with who. Don't get me wrong, my ex and I rarely fight. I would say that it is bizarre but it really isn't. I just know how to pick my battles. Somethings are important to put your foot down about and somethings are not. In the end I try to look at things from my son's point of view. Otherwise I get selfish and want to argue about what *I* want to happen.
I thought about my life four years ago and I know that I'm so much better off and happier now. But nothing will ever come close to August 12th, 2001 in terms of smack-you-in-the-face-life-changing-moments.
I mean I knew I was having a child. I knew that *in theory* it was life changing. But I did not know. Not even a little bit.
If I close my eyes now I can still feel him in my arms for the first time, the slippery howling mass that the nurse uncermoniously flopped upon my chest. I remember my first moment alone with him when he cried and I sang to him. I remember the first time I cried in the hospital room because a sappy song came on about love and I knew at that moment that I would never love anyone as much as my son.
Four years from now he still brings tears to my eyes with his sweetness.
When Major Man and I were dating long distance I would miss him terribly when he was gone. One night after he had left I was sad and began to cry. I let myself cry because M. was occupied in the other room and would probably not see me. But he did, he came into my room in mind-sob and walked over to me. He put his little boy hand on my shoulder and bent down so he could look up into my face. "Do you miss Wandy, mommy?"
He's a perceptive little boy, my son.
I learn more about him every single day. Major Man helps out with that, he's also perceptive and often sees a trait before I do. For example, my son is not a 'toy playing' child. He's not into drawing or building... he is into doing and imagining and acting. He wants to BE the pirate and climb into the spaceship and ride his bike at breakneck speeds.
He's always someone new. "No, I'm Batman, mommy!" "You're right mommy, I AM Spiderman!" "No, mommy I'm just me, you just be mommy." If he had a defining statement at age four it would be "I AM".
So often I just want to scoop him up and smell him and press my face into his. But he's far too busy for that sort of nonsense. So every night before I go to bed I slink into his room to ensure that the covers are properly cocooning him and I press my face to his and smell sweet little breath and the little boy sweat.
I pry the Ninja Turtles or Army Men from his hands and remove the racecars from on his pillow and I kiss him goodnight.
Here's my take: Buying used books at your local bookstore is ok. Buying used books from Amazon is bad. Why? Because Amazon undercuts the authors on its own site by placing the 'used' price directly under the 'new' price. Also, they often are selling used books the same day that the book is released. This is not possible unless they are being bad-bad and selling copies that they shouldn't just to get rid of stock. These 'used' books are not credited to the author's account as being bought retail and therefore this all affects an athor's sales and future book sales.
Now I like my books new but it's an expensive habit. And it's even more expensive because I read a lot of writer blogs and all my writer friends recommend great and wonderful new books to me... SO, despite the fact that I have a book backlog, I want the new book they have just recommended, even if I haven't gotten to the last book they recommended.
My future husband knows about my book addiction. I'm considering writing it into our vows. "Will supply with endless books."
My Wish List at Chapters.ca is about 10 books long. I know that when I get a spare $40 I will go there and buy more books (free shipping on orders over $39!). I'm totally addicted.
Essential New Words for 2005 editions for the workplace vocabulary
BLAMESTORMING-- Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.
SEAGULL MANAGER-- A manager who flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything and then leaves.
ASSMOSIS-- The process by which some people seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than working hard.
SALMON DAY-- The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only to get screwed and die in the end.
CUBE FARM-- An office filled with cubicles.
PRAIRIE DOGGING-- When someone yells or drops something loudly in a cube farm and people's heads pop up over the walls to see what's going
MOUSE POTATO-- The on-line, wired generation's answer to the couch potato.
SITCOMs-- Single Income, Two Children, Oppressive Mortgage. What yuppies turn into when they have children and one of them stops working
to stay home with the kids.
STRESS PUPPY-- A person who seems to thrive on being stressed out and whiney.
PERCUSSIVE MAINTENANCE-- The fine art of whacking the crap out of an electronic device to get it to work again.
ADMINISPHERE-- The rarefied organizational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were designed to solve.
404-- Someone who's clueless. (From the World Wide Web error message "404 Not Found", meaning that the requested document could not be located.)
OHNOSECOND-- That minuscule fraction of time in which you realize that you've just made a BIG mistake.
WOOFies-- Well Off Older Folks
CROP DUSTING-- Surreptitiously farting while passing through a cube farm, then enjoying the sounds of dismay and disgust-- leads to PRAIRIE DOGGING.
I got engaged.
Let me give you a brief rundown of my relationship with Major Man without violating his privacy that he holds dear.
Met: 1996 in Italy while he was stationed in Germany and I was working as a horse trainer in Austria.
Dated: VERY briefly until I returned home to Canada, he went back to the US and we lost touch.
1999: After a few months of stalking and googling I made contact and spoke briefly by phone and then lost contact again (I have it on his good word that he admits he should have called me back).
2000-2003: I faked him out with the whole 'getting married to someone else and having a child' thing.
2003: Made contact again... spoke via phone or emailed for around a year while wooing him (says I) or getting over my issues (says he).
2004: I called his bluff of 'coming up to Canada soon', pigeonholed a free weekend out of him and booked a flight down to Indiana. Upon which we TOTALLY HIT IT OFF.
2004-2005: After a total of 8 flights between the two of us over the last year we have decided to cement this thing in stone. We want to be together. Forever and ever until death do us part. (And sweetheart, if you are reading this I mean that in a very nice 'not the end to your freedom' sort of way.)
BUT we interrupt this wonderful week to say I AM PMSing LIKE A BANSHEE FROM HELL. Yes I am.
I am so BITCHY and FOUL FEELING that not even the pretty things I have are making me smile.
ALSO. I have to phone my dad and tell him the news before I post here. Maybe I should do that now. He'll be up.
We went to the beach yesterday for the first time. There are beaches on the prairie, you say? Why yes, there's a nice little man-made lake in the middle of a provincial park that is in the middle of my city and we decided to go.
You know my son who was afraid to go into the pool farther than his knees? He goes into the lake all the way up to his shoulders! I had a hard time keeping his life jacket on him and settled for standing right near him at all times in the water.
Of course there were many other water babies who had undoubtedly been in the water since birth and I had to acknowledge my son has been totally neglected in the waterbaby area... However, he's not scared! Woohoo!