Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Fun with food

Grocery shopping has become more interesting when you have a cameraphone. Even strolling the aisles, Peter still pops into my head and I have to share our dirty little secrets.

Super Moist

Easy Pumpkin

Thursday, December 22, 2005

John Cusack Soundtrack

Peter is a huge fan of John Cusack, as am I. So while I was still trying to get into his pants, I made this awesome mix CD of songs from John Cusack films. Feel free to plagiarize.

1. Infatuation - Rod Stewart - The Sure Thing
2. In Between Days - The Cure - Gross Pointe Blank
3. Like To Get To Know You Well - Howard Jones - Better Off Dead
4. When Will I Be Loved - Linda Ronstadt - Must Love Dogs
5. Wating In Vain - Annie Lennox - Serendipity
6. This Year - Chantal Kreviazuk - Serendipity
7. Within Your Reach - The Replacements - Say Anything
8. I Want You - Bob Dylan - Identity
9. If You Were Here - Thompson Twins - Sixteen Candles
10. She's A Lady - Tom Jones - Pushing Tin
11. Let's Get It On - Marvin Gaye - High Fidelity
12. Most Of The Time - Bob Dylan - High Fidelity
13. I Want Candy - Bow Wow Wow - Gross Pointe Blank
14. Falling In Love Again - Anika Moa - America's Sweethearts
15. Everybody Wants Some - Van Halen - Better Off Dead
16. Wouldn't It Be Nice - Beach Boys - One Crazy Summer
17. Pressure Drop - The Specials - Gross Pointe Blank
18. I'm Not Running Anymore - John Mellencamp - Pushing Tin
19. Under Pressure - Queen - Gross Pointe Blank
20. In Your Eyes - Peter Gabirel - Say Anything

Sunday, November 27, 2005

land, dammit!

There's so much to say and I'll be sad that I didn't record it all down when I had the chance, but the only thing on my mind is that he's on the early flight and I can't wait for him to land. A week and a day. That's how long we've been apart, and I can hardly wait the 3 hours until he comes back to Princeton.

I'm smitten!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Two weeks

It's a mellow night. There's a howling wind blowing just outside my windows, but inside it's warm and cozy - Just right for being introspective, listening to Sarah McLachlan, Fiona Apple, and Jann Arden, and sipping wine.

Peter is on his way over. I like the sound of saying that. It rolls off my tongue so naturally, as if there was never a time where it wasn't true. Two weeks. That's all it's been since I was so brazen to ask him out for drinks after work. Since we talked for hours at the bar. Since I first felt his kisses... among other things.

Two weeks. That's all it's taken for this feeling of familarity, of comfort, of home to take place. A younger version of me would be frightened by how quick this is all taking place, but the 32 year old me is frightened for another reason.

Two weeks. Time that brings me closer to the end of the year where the chances of things changing drastically are more real. When Peter's contract could be up and he heads off to a new assignment, in a new state. Where I won't be able to see his blue eyes watching me. Where I won't be able to hear his laugh when I send him some risque IM message. Where I won't be able to feel his arms around me at night.

Time is my enemy and I will fight Him off as long as I can.


Saturday, November 12, 2005

man vs. dog

Barry doesn't understand the concept of weekends. At 5:00 he woke me up with a whimper and a wet nose in my eye. He had to go out, and nothing will deter him from getting my ass out of a comfortable, warm bed -- with the scent of him still lingering in my sheets from the night before.

I trodded downstairs with only one sock on and passed the foyer where less than 36 hours earlier he pulled the ultimate cheese move and gave me his favorite sweatshirt to wear for the weekend so I wouldn't miss him so much while he was back home in Toronto. Sometimes I forget that he's 37 and not a puberty-infected teenager.

Barry pounded at the sliding door waking me from my reverie and I bent down to clip the lead to his collar. My sore hips made me grimace at the pain of overuse. But it was a good pain. One that could best be relieved by continual activity and he has so generously offered to be my personal trainer.

Finally done with his business, Barry came back inside and we went back upstairs to a bed that suddenly seems much bigger and emptier than the night before. Not even a fuzzy, snoring dog curled up in my armpit under the covers could take his place.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

x's and o's

So awesome!

I was expecting him after 8, but around 7 I see his car pull up and I just giggled because that was always one of my childhood fantasies... where I would just happen to look up and he would be there coming towards me. So cheezy, I know.

So after all the emails that we were sending back and forth all weekend, when he got inside and I closed the door, told him "I guess this is long overdue," and pulled him in for a kiss. Such a good kisser.

It's funny because he's sitting right next to me, talking to a coworker about his weekend and all I can think about is just how soft his lips are. Mmmmm.....

We chilled out, talked, had some nervous giggles, and did more kissing. And the whole time I couldn't wipe the grin off my face.

Today I'm so tired. He wound up leaving at 9:30, so it's not as if he kept me up all night... yet... but I woke up at 2 am and just tossed and turned ever since.

Apparantly I'm trouble and I'm complicating his life ;) but he's willing to accept that challenge. I'm not sure where this will go, but for now, it fun, it feels right and I don't want it to stop. Those damn kisses...

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

I'm liking it

Sometimes the old me surfaces. Gutsy, confident, witty, get what I want me - and I like it.

Maybe it's because I feel like I have nothing to lose, or that I don't want to go through life with any regrets.

Or maybe it's because he can volley back the flirtations, innuendos and wittiness with such ease.

Whatever reason, this is fun.

Friday, October 21, 2005

head over heels

I haven't written much about work yet. The job is ok, the people I work with are fantastic. They're the kind of people who will celebrate your accomplishments, and laugh in your face when you look like an idiot. In essence, they're an extension of my family.

This morning I took the starring role of Lead Moron. It was still early and not many people had arrived yet. Josee and Mark were both sitting at their desk, a 3 foot cube divider seperating me from them. Andrea was sitting behind me, back to me. I was clowning around and pretended to recline in my office chair.

I must have pretended too hard because I tipped the balance and sent the chair, with me in it, flying backwards. There I was, in the chair, flat on my back, feet sticking straight up in the air. For a brief moment my face froze in shock, then I exploded into laughter. I just thank God that I decided to wear pants today. I would have died in complete embarassment if I had landed with a skirt pooled around my head and my ass shielded only by the thin strip of fabric from my thong.

There are times when you do something stupid and try to hide it, hoping that no one saw your blunder. There was no hiding my display, so I had to call the fullest attention to it. My laughter filled the area until I realized that Andrea was on the phone. From above I saw Mark trying to frame the perfect shot with his camera phone. "That's what we call in England 'freekin funny'!"

I was fine, the only thing brused was my pride. But there wasn't much to lose anyway.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Rubberhead

The sky had finally cleared up and bits of blue reclaimed it rightful place from the gray clouds. Barry was happily trotting next to me, sniffing rotting leaves and peeking under bushes for his nemesis, the rabbit. I had my iPod on, listening to the summery songs of Jimmy Buffett and walking in time to the tropical beat. The wind was beginning to pick up, the chill made my arm hair stand on end. Autumn was roaring in.

This summer had been particularly difficult for me. I was unemployed for the majority of it and the lack of funds and the feeling of uselessness made getting out of bed seem at times an act of futility. Barry, with his incessant sniffing at my closed eyes and licking the insides of my nose, was my alarm clock. His bladder made all of my lazy mornings irrelevant. But I credit my pursuant pooch with maintaining my sanity. By attending to his needs and succumbing to his unending wishes to play, he has kept me from the dark shadows of depression and self-imposed exile.

I noticed the little white fuzz-ball walking towards us before Barry did. A sweaty, balding man was crouched over, busy picking up his puppy's poop along the walking path. The tiny cockapoo was standing perfectly still, its black eyes standing out like small bits of coal. She was focused on Barry; him still oblivious, staring up the trunks of sapling trees, trying to figure out how to reach the birds hiding perched in the branches.



The cockapoo's high pitched yelp got Barry's attention and he was off running, stretching his retractable leach to the full fifteen feet and almost yanking my arm out of the socket in the process. Back and forth he ran, arcing left and right of the pup who was being dragged in the opposite direction from her owner.

Like David preparing to slay Goliath, I was turning in forward circles swinging Barry around like a slingshot at the end of his leash. His ears and tongue were flapping and his eyes never left the other dog retreating away. He never saw it coming.

Barry was making his third counter-clockwise rotation around me, when he met up with one of the sapling trees. The side of his head bounced off the narrow trunk like a rubber Superball. He stopped for just a moment to shake off his embarrassment and continued on his orbit.

I burst out laughing. I reeled him in to rub his furry head but he seemed completely unaffected by his trauma. For him, there was so much out in the world to discover than to be bothered by such a minor setback. Just shake it off and keep on running.

Funny, the things you can learn from a dog.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Good thing the donuts were fine

Fifteen minutes. That's how long it takes for the police to arrive to the scene of a car accident. I know because I timed it after I called it in.

I was on a grassy patch of land out front of my townhouse walking Barry. I was watching him circle around the grass three times, his tail pointing down, ready to take a dump when I heard the crash.

I looked up to see an Acura Integra stopped across the middle of the busy road in front of the entrance to my complex, not more than 100 feet away from me. It was blocking traffic from both sides. A Nissan Sentra was stopped, crumpled in the turning lane facing north. From the Acura I heard a frustrated "Aaaargh!" from the twenty-something year old punk in the driver seat. Doors slowly opened from both cars, passengers getting out to check out the damage. Traffic was building up on both sides of the road, impatient drivers maneuvering past the frozen cars.

I ran back to my house to call 911. I calmly gave the operator the town, street, cross streets and the landmark of the Dunkin Donuts directly in front of the accident. I went back outside to wait.

By now, the cars were both moved off the road and into the parking lots of the Dunkin Donuts and the adjoining gas station. Traffic was moving normally and a small crowd was gathered by each of the cars. People were on cell phones and a kid with a dog, I believe a passenger of the Nissan, were walking around the parking lot. The nosy neighbor that I am, I watched with Barry across the street and I waited.

Five minutes. Ten minutes. Where the hell were the cops? The town isn't very big and the accident was in front of a Dunkin Donuts for fuck's sake! I would imagine that the place would be swarming with flashing red and blue lights.

Fifteen minutes after I called it in, the police finally arrived. Satisfied with my civic duty fulfilled, I went back home to watch Law & Order reruns on tv.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Retail therapy

I spent Friday morning strolling through the mall, fingering the displays of crisp cotton button-down Oxford shirts and polyester blazers. I coveted the perfectly matched necklaces, dripping with amber and chocolate beads. With the promise of a real paycheck coming in weeks, I decided to celebrate my re-entry into the work world with a new outfit.

In my head, I imagined me juggling 15 different projects, holding a phone in one hand while signing an invoice with the other. Across my desk would be binders filled with project requirements, content decks and tacked to every square inch of my cubicle walls are gant charts detailing precisely when the creative would be approved and when the development would begin. And I would so look the part of pure professionalism: trendy tortoise shell glasses balanced on the tip of my nose, my freshly cut, newly dyed coffee-colored hair perfectly in place and my yoga toned body draped in a smart cream colored sweater set with charcoal herringbone wool pants.

With an exasperated sigh from a young mother struggling with her temperamental toddler, "Nooooo! I want chicken nuggets! Nooooooo!", I was heralded back into reality.

I grabbed the turquoise wrap sweater, the brown and cream paisley skirt and the three pairs of dress pants and took them into the unattended dressing room. In the reflection of the full length mirrors I was reminded that my hair sprung into unmanageable frizz with the impending threat of showers this afternoon, and my tank top kept riding up my body to reveal my belly roll exploding out over my jean skirt. Must. do. situps.

The sweater and skirt ensemble were fantastic, the blue accenting my tanned skin and showing enough cleavage to suggest an hourglass shape, yet still appropriate for the office. The skirt flared out enough to highlight my shapely hips but disguised my 'not ready for prime time' thighs. The military had camouflage fatigues, I had a-line skirts.

I took off the skirt, placed it on the 'Buy' clothes hook, and selected the smaller sized pants. The thinking that if I fit into these smaller sized pants, then the Weight Loss Fairy visited me as my reward for consuming Slim-Fast shake after another for the past 3 weeks. I put one leg in, and steadied myself against the white laminate walls while I stuffed in the other leg. The seams stretched across my thighs and with a big inhale I was able to zip up. Holding my breath I turned in the mirror to examine the calamity. Before I passed out from lack of oxygen, I pealed out of the pants and returned them to the 'No Fucking Way' clothes hook.

In defeat I tried the other pants; the one size larger pants. The zipper zipped comfortably and there was no pull of polyester across my crotch. The length was just the right height for a new pair of black heels and there was hardly any extra room in the waist. I craned my neck over my left shoulder to see the rear view in the mirror and I was satisfied. Yeah, these were my post-college size pants and yeah, I was much more comfortable in skirts nowadays, but these would also be my post-unemployment pants and that had a much more optimistic ring to it.

I happily added it to the 'Buy' rack, whipped out my credit card and strode confidently to the check out counter.

Friday, September 16, 2005

What next? Swarm of Locusts?

Maybe the Bible isn't all full of religius rhetoric. Turn on the news, read the papers and the signs of the apocolipse are almost as blatent as the South of the Border billboards on Interstate 95. American cities are underwater, contrete structures representing wealth and strentgh toppled like dominoes, people are closely tracked through credit card purchases and web clicks, and in Washington, the most powerful man in the free world lists idly by while his bretheren suffer and kill each other in the streets trying to survive, his forked tongue delivering lies to the evening news.

As if this isn't enough, bring on the plague. Mice infected with the bubonic plague are missing from a lab in Newark. The health comissioner says that they probably got eaten by other animals, or if they got out, are already dead, so the health risk is small. Yet the FBI and the CDC are both investigating. This brings me no comfort.

And for those newly graduated twenty-somethings who find themselves competing for entry level positions with thrity-somethings, they can always work for the Catholic Church as student exorcists. Apparany the need is become greater.

The Four Horsemen have mounted their steeds. The white and red horses march along the Potomic River and the black horse wades through the gulf coast. The pale horse laps gently at the waters of the Hudson, waiting patiently for his command to gallop west.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

The universe answers

Oh ye of little faith, let me tell you of the wonders of the universe. Simply ask of it and it will provide.

I was walking down the street, just having come from the free jazz night at the State Theater in New Brunswick, still be-bopping in my head and savoring the taste of Corona still on my tongue. The air was still heavy with leftover rain and my hair was no longer following the rules of gravity. I was just at my car when I felt my phone vibrate. A surge of electricity went through my body because I knew that I didn't want to miss this call. I pulled open the string that held the top of my beach bag/purse closed and shuffled around keys, wallet, journal and finally came up with the phone.

I opened the clamshell. "Hello?" I put my finger in my other ear to block out the sound of the passing truck.

"Hi, Claudine? This is Joanie, I have great news! I just spoke with Chris and he was really excited to meet you. As you know, he'll be taking on more responsibility and he thinks you would make a perfect addition to the team. He want's to offer you the job!"

"That's fantastic!" A man swerved passed me to avoid me as I raised my fist into the air, in a half victory sign. I unlocked my car and sat inside so as not to potentially pummel other pedestrians.

I was simply gushing as Joanie was telling me the particulars, when I could expect to start, asking me some information to start the hiring process. Through her questions I kept thinking I can fix my air conditioner, put in custom closet organizers, finish the work on my floors, GO CLOTHES SHOPPING! Finally I can replenish my anorexic savings account. I wouldn't have to feel like the bum of the neighborhood, my car sitting idily by in the parking lot while the rest of my neighbors got up, went to work and contributed to society. I would be starting in 2 weeks. Plenty of time to shop, visit friends and feel euphoric knowing that my financial anxieties can be put to rest.

My backpacking trip around the world would be put on hold, or at least modified in time to traverse the continents one at a time. I would now have the choice to stay in a hostel rather than be forced to stay in one. I could indulge in my pwn private hotel room - with it's own bathroom. Oh, the possibilities are endless.

I know at the days go by and I'm closer to starting the new job, I will get those 'first day of school' jitters. Will they like me? Was that interview just a big put on? Will I get there and be told it was all a big episode of Punk'd? Aston Kutcher would come out in his sideways cocked trucker had and point in my face, "Dude, you are soooo punked! Ha! You should see the look on your face. Wave to the camera, it's over there. Demi, come on out, you have to see this!"

But as this is my daydream, I will punch Ashton in his jaw and leave his with his stupid Kelso expression, saunter past Demi, palm rased to her face in the 'talk to the hand' guesture and slide into my waiting convertible silver Mustang, give everyone the finger and peel out of the parking lot in a defiant squeal of burnt rubber.

breathe easier

The world can breathe easier today. After watching the ongoing updates on tv and the speculations from various media, there is finally some sense of completeness.

Britney Spears had a baby boy.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Universe, it's your turn

When it rains, it pours. And it's a friggin' moonsoon outside, baby!

I'm not talking all about the weather, either. I had a job interview today and I think I wowed them. But what was even cooler is that during my interview, my phone vibrated twice, the voicemail from two different recruiters telling me of opportunities that I would be a fit for.

My confidence has returned with this new wave of attention. After weeks of stagnancy, drowning me in the blahs, a current of capability has arrived.

This position is part project manger, part event planner for a training/education department for a big pharmaceutical company. I love it because I know I have the PM skills, and I sold them on my event planning experience - not professionally, but from my year as sorority president. Jason, the PM who is leaving and is interviewing for his replacement, said that the majority of the events that he has to plan closely resembles the sorority/frat functions. Score two for me!

It's also fantastic because part of the responsiblity in ensuring that the events are being put together as planned is to be on site. Chris, he director is off to England in a few weeks to oversee a training event. So travel is part of the job.

Now Chris and Jason have been very clear that this is a high profile position, often juggling may different projects at once, with priorities changing at a moments notice. It's very hands-on, and the use of Dreamweaver, Flash, Project is all required, all of which I know.

I feel very comfortable with the team members, we get along and I can see us working together as a team, which they emphasize the whole TEAM mentality. AND, it's only 15 minutes from my house.

I am so excited about this job. It's a great blend of stuff I know with new stuff that I'll have to learn. It combines organization, relationship building, getting my hands dirty and travel!! It's perfect.

I called my recruiter to let her know how interested I am in this position and how well the interview went. This feels like a great fit. The whole, short ride home I kept thinking how much I wanted this job. Now I leave it up to the Universe to let it happen.

Monday, September 12, 2005

A writing Exercise

They had nothing to say to each other. Each opened their lunches and spread out their meal in front of them. In the chatter of the school cafeteria the three ten year olds sat in exile.

Louis carefully unwrapped his cheese and bologna sandwich. He forgot to add the mayonnaise again and he grimaced as he swallowed it down. He was in a rush to get out of the house this morning. He didn’t want to be there when his mother finally awoke from being passed out on the couch all night. Louis knew that if she found him there, she would make him make her coffee, bring the Tylenol and rub her head until the headache went away, usually not until after noon.

Stan popped open his soda can; suds foamed over on to the table, his science book and on to his Spongebob Squarepants t-shirt, too small for his bulging belly. In one long slurp, he sucked up the spilt soda and wiped his mouth with his arm. Stan pushed his entire peanut butter and jelly sandwich into his mouth and chewed it like a cow chews its cud, crumbs falling, jelly stuck to the side of his face.

Emily hung her head down towards her French fries but her eyes were on the popular girls’ table. She envied the way their long blond hair bounced when they laughed and how their glitter nail polish flashed in the fluorescent light. Emily looked at her own bitten fingernails and quickly hid them in her lap, silently willing the bell to ring.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Radar Ears

I wish I knew what Barry thinks about when I take him for walks. I can't see his eyes to see what he's focused on, but I can tell when he's on to something. I call it his Rabbit Radar and it's all in reading the action of his ears.

In relazed mode, his ears point to the sides, flap flap flapping along. Both ears droop over and when he runs in a playful gallop I wonder if those ears will give him enough lift to actually get him airborne.

Barry turns the radar on his ears face forward. He is in tracking mode and is intent on searching for something to chew on - a used piece of bubble gum or an inattentive bird. Anything will do. With something in sight every muscle tenses and from my vantige point I can even see the pusling of his butthole below his stubby white tail. His pace quickens and his ears are in full frontal flap. He has spotted a pile of leaves that resemble the ears of a hiding rabbit.

Oooh the elusive fucking rabbit, Barry's sworn enemy. When we pass a patch of bushes or the edge of a wooded area Barry is on full alert because he knows that's where they love to hide. Sometimes the rabbits are smart and stay pervectly still. Barry never notices them. But in one sudden rabbit movement Barry's ears turn and face all the way back for chase mode and he takes off running trying in vain to nab that puffy white tail.

To watch the chases is like watching a ballet with a prima ballerina and a hippopotamus. The rabbit has delicate movements and can switch directions with prescission. Barry thunders behind with inertia on his side and has to take wide and lumbering turns to keep the rabbit in sight.

The floppy tips of his ears flutter behind his head like Superman's cape. He is in The Zone and no amounts of me chasing after him yelling "cookie! cookie!" is going to get his attention.

Soon Barry tires out, the rabbit disappears into the bushes and Barry trots back to me, ears flapping, tongue hanging and his eyes bright and excited as if asking "Didya see that, Mom? I almost caught him! Didya see it? Didya?"

I laugh and scratch behind his radar ears and toss him a cookie, a well deserved consolation prize.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

more daydreaming

I was walking with Barry this morning, something that I’ve been doing regularily for a week, not only as a requirement for caring for my dog, but to get me exercising. We walk to the park near my house and do two laps around the walking path. I bring my iPod and listen to the random rotation of whatever songs are saved there. In between a Jack Johnson song and a Fiona Apple song, my mind started to wander.

I daydreamed of me having yet another adventure trhough Europe. I saw me flying in to Dublin, Ireland with nothing more than a backpack full of my laptop, digital camera, journal and versitle comfortable clothes. I would stay in hostels and get from place to place by train, bus or ferry. I would visit the green country side and have my meals in Irish pubs. I’d make friends with locals or other travelers and send emails of my adventures to stay out of London and explore the smaller towns along the way to the English Channel where I would take the Eurorail through France and into Italy where I would explore the amazing art in Florence, Rome, the Vatican City and down to the heel of Italy’s boot and hop over to Greece.

I’m getting distracted. I’m looking at maps of Europe and surfing women travel sites for appropriate things to wear in countries that I’m interested in.

I can imagine the blue of the waters and the white houses lining the cliffs and so much a part of me wants to throw my things in a bag right now and start this trip.

I have a tendency of packing too much. From what I read, only a few articles of clothing are necessary, and they should be lightweight cotton. A long, knee to ankle length skirt is a must. In many religious areas showing too much skin is a taboo. Don’t wear shorts, tank tops or white sneakers lest I be immediately labels as can American tourist. Long sleeve button down shirts and dark sunglasses are a must have, as are comfortable walking shoes. I know I would be walking everywhere, so this is a necessity. A large scarf which could be used for covering my head and neck in more conservative areas as well as keep off the hot sun. Leave the jewelry at home and heavy makeup is not recommended.

Oh how I want to see the world! I want to see the Turkish bazaars and the Taj Mahal. I want to see the safaris of Africa and the Australian beaches.

Once I had the idea that I could rent my house while I travel, a huge weight lifted from me. I wouldn’t need to sell my home that I love so much. Just let some other family live here for a year, paying my mortgage. Maybe I’d sell my car. I could always get another one when I get home. I’d add my mom to my bank accounts so she could pay whatever bill I get while I’m gone. I don’t even feel afraid at the thought of traveling alone. As I learned on my road trips, more opportunities seem to happen when I’m solo.

Looking around my home I see so many things that I want to clean out, pack up or just get rid of because it would lighten my load and thus make my emotional state much more calm. It would mean that I’m one step closer to making it very easy to start this journey.

So many other people have done it, so I can too. Meeting Debbie on my trip through Spain was such an inspiration to me. She did it alone, going from Ireland to Greece in about 2 months. It inspired me. This is something that I have to do.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

dreams

I just signed up for the travel writing class. I hope it's not full and that I can participate.

I also got this idea in my head. One that has me excited. If I land a contracting position for a few months, it will allow me to pay off the credit card and take care of some minor improvements around the house. Then I'll rent my house and take off for a trip around Europe or where ever the wind may take me. I'll take my laptop, camera and a backpack. It sounds so adventerous, so romantic. So... so me!

I'll have to let this fester for a while.

Friday, August 26, 2005

I will...

1. Sign up for the travel writing class on Writers.com.
2. Write short stories about the ridiculous events in my life and use them as the springboard for the novel that's inside of me.
3. Not back down on my salary needs or proximity to my job.
4. Continue to exercise regulary, even if it's an hour walk with my dog.
5. Love myself, even though I am in the process of improving me.
6. Make good eating choices, and not pick at crap because I'm bored.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Open letter to my friend, Skim

Yoooouuuuu!!!

I haven't felt real compelled to write much lately. Go figure, I have all the time in the world right now, you know - with being unemployed and all - and I don't have the motivation to record the daily events of my unexciting life at the moment.

But your latest entry about Tommy Lee does allow me to comment. This past Sunday I went to see Motley Crue in concert at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Homdel, NJ. Musically, they rocked. Vince Neil sounded great and even though I had lawn seats, I didn't sit once. They played all the songs that I wanted to hear: "Girls, Girls, Girls", "10 Seconds to Love", and of course, the crowd sing-along, "Home Sweet Home".

I was as rock-star as I could get away with - Denim skirt, black halter top, studded belt and a black bandana wrapped around my wrist. I was definately NOT trying to copy my 14 year old dirtbag wannabe persona, but I might as well have some fun with the night.

I was having a great time although I wondered when the hell did I start getting old. I'm no prude by any means, but I found it a little disturbing when every other word out of their mouths was Fuck. "Hey you mother fukers, we're here to rock your fucking ass off! Woo hoo! Fuck yeah, New Jersey!" Then with the addition of the porno clips on the video monitors and the "titti-cam" that Tommy was in charge of during one of the breaks, I was feeling embarassed for them. Sure, they were rock stars who were notorious, but now they were middle aged dads who were still acting if they were 22 years old.

All the guys in the band were heavily made up, too. Not all glam like as in the 80's, but with heavy base makeup to hide them. Mick Mars was looking like the Grim Reaper, Nikki Sixx has this freaky red face paint made to look like a masquerade mask over his eyes and Tommy just looked like he had on a white clown face. These boys were looking old! I missed the hair and the scarves, the gloves and the leather. Sure they looked like hot women, but they could kick your ass. Hell, Nikki even died with a heroin needle in his arm and he's still banging up Fender guitars at the end of a show. Leaving the show I thought that I would have enjoyed it much more had it was 18 years ago.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

woof

Being a dog is so fucking easy.

Right now Barry is tearing all around the house, upstairs and down, with a plastic soda bottle crunched between his teeth. He shows no sign of stopping even though we just came back from a 45 minute walk, IN THE RAIN.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Funk You

I’ve been no stranger to rejection in my life – college applications, softball team, lovers, and financial loans. I’ve also had my share of job rejections, but the wound was torn open, a lemon wedge smashed in and salt thrown on top. If only it was a margarita I could drink away the pain.

I was just informed today that the remaining hope of a new job was given to another applicant who had more experience in the search engine optimization field and would be able to hit the ground running. But I will be kept in mind if another position opened up where they had time to train me or if they hear of a project management position from any of their colleagues. Sigh. Now it’s back to square one.

I am so filled with desperation that sometimes I have to fight to keep from crying, but sometimes I lose. Yesterday at a neighbor’s wedding I teared up, not just because it was a wedding and that’s what you do, but because I saw this girl who I used to babysit, standing there looking beautiful and so happy in her white gown, her whole life ahead of her full of possibilities. In contrast, I was alone, jobless, more flabby than I care to think about and getting more and more depressed about the future state of my financial affairs. How long could I afford to be out of work? Would I have to take a severe paycut from my previous jobs? Would I have to go back to waiting tables? Would I need to sell my house? Do I have to move back in with my parents? The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to cry.

I am lost and scared and I don’t know what I need to do. I’ve been sending out tons of resumes through Monster job boards and I think I’ve exhausted scouring the yellow pages for nearby agencies. I look for free methods of entertainment. Last Friday I went into Princeton just so I can hear the live bands that perform outside of Thomas Sweets. I visit libraries instead of buying from Barnes & Noble. I cook instead of eating out and I can’t allow myself to buy anything that isn’t absolutely necessary. The unemployment checks don’t cover my mortgage and the monthly bills so I’m forced to take out of savings and that bothers me. I know that’s what the savings account is there for, but it feels like I’m unraveling the threads of my security blanket. I can’t even enjoy the fantasy of taking off and escaping it all because the cost behind it takes away any enjoyment.

Barry has been my only comfort. He’ll lay next to me and lick my face as if to tell me that everything will be all right. He’s my main reason for waking up – so he can go out to pee. I even look forward to his walks because it means that I’ll get out of the house for some exercise and sunshine. Plus, I’m always on the lookout for a handsome man walking his dog who I can casually meet.

I need to get out of this funk. This miserable experience is affecting my mood, my health and quite possibly my chances of employment.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Just checking in

Over a month later and I'm still unemployed. It's quite discouraging and I'm really getting into a bad funk. The NYC interviews didn't work out and really, I'm relieved. I have no desire to want to work in the city. I'm still working on a job only 6 miles from my house. I've had two interviews there and I really like the place, people and the position. I really hope this works out.

When I'm not at home spending time with Barry, reading or watching tv, I've been visiting my friends and staying at their homes going to the pool and beach.

My writers block has come back and I've lost the motivation to write. Until next time...

Thursday, July 28, 2005

If you're not here raise your hand

I've been back from my road trip for 2 1/2 weeks and I haven't been able to bring myself to update here. I've hardly been writing in my journal either. Sigh. Being at home unemployed with no one but Barry keeping me company is getting to me.

I've had a few interviews in NYC that went well, or so I thought. Apparantly not well enough. That's ok, I guess. I wasn't too keen in working in the city. The commute would break my spirit.

I just came back from an interview this morning. It's at a really small agency that's right down the road from me, only 6 miles. It seems really cool and I know I've done well so far because I was asked to come back for a follow up meeting. Right now, the only thing that could put a thorn in the whole decision process is the salary. We haven't talked money yet. That should be interesting.

Monday, June 27, 2005

It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.

I got notice last Wednesday. Due to budget cuts, the consultants were being let go. My last day would be July 1.

My road trip looks like it will begin July 2.

This time, instead of heading south to Key West, I'm going to take I-80 and head west to Chicago, Chi-town, the windy city. I've never been there before and I figure 'What the hell'.

road_trip

Here is my proposed route, starting with Cleveland and a quick stop at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. I was there a few years ago, but I loved it so much that I thought that it wouuld make a nice first stop. It's about 8 hours away from home and about all the driving that I should do in one day.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

bad hair day


bad hair day, originally uploaded by bearclau.

I don't know what's been up with my hair lately. It just doesn't want to play nice. My bangs have gotten to doing this wierd curl thing. I tried parting on the opposite side today and there's no difference. It just swoops around and falls directly in front of my eye. Not attractive.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

so close

The utter contempt I have for my job is overwhelming. I was on the edge on insubordination on the phone today with my manager. I know it, and I have to make deliberate attempts to knock it off.

I think she knows what I think of her.

Yee Haw!

Last Saturday I went to the rodeo with Annie and her friend Ellen. Silliness ensues.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

I do weird things

How ridiculous am I?

I just sent a letter (a real US mail letter) to my ex-boyfriend from 8th grade completely out of the blue. I googled him and found his address, so I figured 'what the hell'.

It was very nice..."How are you, what are you up to, just wanted to say hi" kind of letter. I wonder if he'll reply.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

ouch!

I have just witnessed that speaking solely for the sake of speaking doesn't necissarily make you look like you know what you're talking about. Sometimes silence shows wisdom.

When the client says to me straight out in a meeting, "I trust you.", over the business managers on both project teams, it means a lot. If I was my manager, I would have taken that harshly.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

gripe, gripe

I'm not as concerned about being out of a job than I am about being bored in my job.

I think I mentioned this before, but when I started I was feeling overwhelmed with all the looming projects I was walking into. This was all based on my manager's description of what she was responsible for. That was about 6 weeks ago.

For the past 2? 3? weeks I've been going insane, not because I'm overworked, but because I can't find enough for me to do to keep me occupied. This 'mountain' of work that I anticipated when I started? I think my manager was exaggerating. And I don't even think she realized it.

I am juggling 5 different things going on, and it's all manageable, mainly because the items that I am directly responsible for haven't hit yet, or my deliverables are staggered at different times. I can tell you what's going on now in any of the projects and I have all my information organized and easily accessible. I'm not saying I'm Super Project Manager or anything, I just multi-task pretty well - as long as I'm interested in what I'm doing.

My manager however, is a different story. I actually feel sorry for her. I see her as a scared puppy dog sulking in a corner because she accidentaly pooped on the rug. She seems to be flustered when I give her updates on the current projects and she's trying to be an active participant in them, but there are more times when she's just in my way than actually being a befefit to me.

It's very weird. I don't want to absorb myself in a job. All I want is to come to work in the morning, do my job and be productive, and then leave it all behind when I go home. I don't want to sit here all day staring at the computer; have to teach my boss about the project/process/technology; or play secretary.

And to top it all off, I don't have a permanent place to sit. I've been moved to two cubicles, I have another set up in the 'bullpen' - a small space shared with 5 other people! If I actually have to sit there, I'll be wedged between two foreign developers with their elbows literally in my ears. When I get back from vacation, there'll also be a new person on the team, an intern. I want to know what the hell is there for him to do? There's hardly enough for me to do.

Enough griping. I'm on vacation in three days!

Where's Barry?

Barry is not a fan of the vaccuum cleaner. As soon as I click it on, he's slinking away under the bed or in the corner. Last week I went to look for him and found this familiar shadow behind the shower curtain.

Where's Barry

Monday, May 16, 2005

iLove it

It's here! It's here! My lovely new iBook is waiting for me at the FedEx distribution center. It tried to get to my house, but being that I work, I was not there to accept it.

So now I have to go through another long-ass boring day with nothing to do until I can go home, let Barry out to pee and drive through congested streets to FedEx so I can pick up my nirvana in a box.

Friday, May 13, 2005

iWait

I've been tracking my order of my newly purchased iBook. It left China this morning and is on the way half-way around the world to me. I just hope it gets here before next Saturday because I'm outta here!

People think I'm wierd to want to bring a laptop with me on vacation. It's not as if I plan on spendind the day laying out on the beach surfing websites. I want it so I can edit my video tape while I'm still there, and have a complete vacation DVD as I step off the plane when I get back home. It's all for fun.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

BFF?

I leave for vacation to Punta Cana in one week. It will be a mega-vacation on an all inclusive resort with 22 of our closest friends and relatives. I have a feeling, that even if it rains the entire time, we will still have a good time.

Except for the one thing that is weighing on my mind. Part of this 22 person group are my old idiot friend, Dave and Brian. If you don't remember Brian, let me refresh your memory.

I haven't spoken to him since then, about a year and a half. So much has happened since then; Jim is gone, I own a house and a dog and I'm basically in charge of my own life. I don't know how he and I are expected to interact. I have no ill feelings - I could get right back on to our 'Jerry / Elaine', 'Rachel / Joey' friendship without any problems or baggage from the past. The only problem is that I don't know how Brian will be.

So I sent him an email. I was direct, to the point, but witty. Now I'm just hitting refresh on my Yahoo account to see if he responds.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

11 little things

Oh how the time is going be ever so s..l..o..w..l..y.

I'm in a cranky mood today and I'll tell you why.

  1. Barry woke me up at 5:00 am to go out and pee
  2. Barry woke me up again at 5:30 am to go out and poop. I know it was to poop by the intensity of him licking my face. He had to go out. NOW. I ignored his urgent licks the other day and awoke to two perfectly formed turds by my front door.
  3. Barry woke me up again at 6:15 am to eat. Fine. I was now officially awake and able to do my yoga stretches to ease my stiff lower back.
  4. I have nothing to do at work. My manager is out of the office for the next three days, so at least I don't have to try very hard to look busy. I answer an email, I make a phone call, and my to-do list is done for the day.
  5. I went to my car to take a nap. I woke up after an hour hot and sweaty.
  6. My lunch sucked. I had a buffalo chicken sandwich with too much wing sauce. It was too hot and the wing sauce and blue cheese just dripped out of the bread all the way down my wrist.
  7. It's nice outside and I'm in here, dressed nice in work clothes, thinking of all the fun things I could be doing with my time instead of sitting in a cube.
  8. Someone brought their kid in today. This kid wasn't happy. He screamed and whined in the office right behind me. The office door was opened and the piercing scream echoed inside my head. I got up to walk away, anywhere else but there, but no matter where I walked in the building, all I heard was that kid screaming his head off.
  9. A woman in some office somewhere was having a phone conversation - by speakerphone - with the door open. I HATE speakerphone, especially when it's used out of pure laziness. Pick up the phone lady, I have no interest in hearing directions on how to get to Dunkin Donuts.
  10. I can't even find something intersting to distract me online. I was looking as various blogs, and accidentally came to analteensex.blogspot.com. Oops.
  11. My pc crashed and the main hard drive couldn't be saved. Oh how I can't wait to get my iBook.

Monday, May 09, 2005

To The Dark Side

I have just purchased an iBook. Being from a PC background... all the way from the Radio Shack TRS-80, I am quite stressed on this life altering technology platform shift.

There were several reasons why I decided to turn to Mac:
  1. I had an urge to make a major purchase
  2. I wanted to bring a new electronic toy on vacation
  3. I wanted to play with video editing more
  4. My Dell crashed
  5. My birthday is coming up and I wanted to buy me a present


As soon as I clicked on the 'Buy' button, I was excited to get my hands on a new toy, a pretty wireless laptop that I can play with video editing to my hearts content. But I also got worried...what if my mac doesn't play nice with my PC? Will I get them to network? Will I get so enamored with my mac, that I forsake my PC and have to buy new Photoshop and Office software? What if my newfound freedom from wires and the Blue Screen of Death will encourage me to quit my job and become a world traveling adventurer, documenting my journies through photo and video? What if I spend years on the road in exotic locales, missing my family and friends grounded in the US? What if I live out my fantasy of people watching on street cafes and walking through ocean surf at sunset to the carols of tropical birds? What if I become an expatriot living in the caribbean?

What if my iBook doesn't come soon enough??

Friday, May 06, 2005

Poop


Day in the Life - Morning doo, originally uploaded by spappyjones.

This may gross some of you out, but I find dogs pooping one of the most funniest things in the world. The way they hunch over and make a face.

This isn't my dog, but it looks just like Snuggles, my family dog when I was in high school.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

My feet stink


I never wear stockings with my shoes, so as the day goes on, more and more sweat collects in my shoe, thus making my feet stinky. I normally kick off my shoes for comfort and to give them some breathing room, but I have to wonder if the smell wafts over these cubicle walls.

In other news, today is Cinco de Mayo. 05/05/05. I think I need to make myself some strawberry margaritas at home. Pit stop at the liquor store for some tequila!

Monday, May 02, 2005

21 again

What a fun weekend! It started Friday night in Deleware.

I rode down by myself - I was meeting up with Brian, Melinda & Andrew and Andrew's college friends. Andrew graduated from U of Deleware so it turned into a reunion for him.

It took be a while to find the hotel. The directions I got online sent me in the wrong direction. Finally I got to where I needed to be and hung out with Brian in the lobby while we waited for Melinda & co.

We all got ourselves together and went out to the first bar - I forget the name, but it was off the main strip. All of us - about 10 of us, got some pitchers and took over a table. That's what I missed the most about school, the college bar prices.

At about 11pm Melinda, Brian and I walked to Jen's apartment to pick her up so we could go out. When we got there, Jen relized that she doesn't have her drivers license! The first words out of her mouth wasn't "how am I going to get in the bars?", but "I've been driving around without a license!".

What a nerd. Jen is the only one of us cousins who never got into trouble. If she had a fake ID like the rest of us, this wouldn't be a problem. While Jen went out to her car to see if it was in there, we made videos making fun of Jen on Brian's cell phone.

We decided that we were going to try and get Jen in using her license renual paperwork. Jen was really nervous because they card hard there.

We walked to the Stone Baloon which was just down the street and stood on a crazy ass line. By the time we got to the frint, it was 11:56pm. We said to the hot bouncer, "Ok, here's the situation..."

We told him how we drove for three hours just for Jen's 21st brithday and she lost her license, but here's her renual stuf, blah blah blah. He took one look and said "Ok, just hang out by the side for 4 minutes." So at midnight we entered the bar to celebrate.

We had a good time people watching, drinking 24oz $2.50 Coronas and $2 shots. Andrew was completely hammered and eventually blacked out and didn't remember anything.



The bar closed at 1am, so we mingled around outside at the curb for a while. We watched 2 guys knock down a garbage can across the street and yelled until the cops pulled them over - to the cheers of us across the street. I took a picture of one of them with his hands on the hood of the cop car. After he was let go and the cops left, Mr. Tough Guy knocked over another garbage can.

Andrew was beligerant and could hardly stand up. His friends were doing sumersalts on the grass. It was college revisited.

We stopped back at Jen's place. Melinda had to bring Andrew back to the hotel becuase he was such a mess. Brian and I hung out a little while longer, then stopped off at Dunkin Donuts before walking back to the hotel.

Andrew wasn't in the hotel room when we got back. When he did get in, he passed out, fell facr first, on the bed next to Brian and me. Whatever.

I woke up later in the night when Andrew got up to use the bathroom. I couldn't tell if he was peeing on the floor, in the tub, or where ever. Regardless, something was up and I didn't want to know what he was doing in there. I heard Andrew leave and got up to see what kind of trouble he was getting in. He was lightly knocking on his friend's door.

I had to go to the bathroom, but I went down to the lobby. I left with Andrew standing in the hallway. I came back to him standing in the same spot.

When Andrew finally came back in the room, I told him to pass out on Melinda's bed, not mine. He did, fully clothed, with his shoes on.

Oh yeah - sometime during th enight, Brian, Melinda and I entertained ourselves for 10 minutes making farting noises with our mouthes. I don't know why.

The next morning we went to breakfast at the diner - after we took wrong turns all over campus in the pouring rain. No big deal. I was driving. At the diner we left a note in the guestbook for Jen's birthday and took off for a jacker for Melinda.



We finally ended up at the mall where everyone bought at least one thing. Brian found a cool Rincon Beach hat in Abercrombie. Weird.

Later we went to Jen's apartment. Margie and Willie came up for her recital and brought dinner.

It left not long after dinner. I was meeting The Quad in Philly to see "Tony & Tina's Wedding", but that's another story.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Blue Man Dorks



Last weekend, my family went to see Blue Man Group in Manhattan. It was such a crazy, fun time!

Friday, April 22, 2005

daydreaming

What a long day this will be. My manager is out of the office at an offsite meeting. I'm sitting in a cube not knowing how long I'll be here; I'm supposed to be movng into the 'bullpen', a community cube shared by 4 other people. I've caught up with the things on my to-do list and I don't even think there is enough around to even give the illusion of being busy.

It's Friday, no one is around me and it's deathly quiet in this office. I have iTunes playing, but at almost whisper level because I don't know how far the sound will carry. I have a feeling that even the keyboard clicking is echoing off the walls.

Today will be a day for an extra long lunch hour - maybe at Barnes & Noble. I have an urge to shop and now that I have a paycheck coming in again, I know that urge will be satisfied very soon. I've been keeping a new digital camera purchase at the back of my mind. I have that trip to the Dominical Republic coming up, you know. I wish it was the end of May already so I can hop on that plane for a week of lavish nonsense.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

One of my proudest moments

On the evening of my 21st birthday, I was visiting my sorority sister in Stone Harbor, a cute beacy-trendy shore town in New Jersey. Sam had been spending her summers here for years so she had tons of local friends. We spend the evening in the Snickers Bar and I had my customary 21 shots. Somewhere around shot 9, I had a bad Kamakasi experience and went into the bathroom where I projectile vomited into the corner of the stall. I think I was more amazed with the distance I covered than the fact that I pubiclly threw up in a bar bathroom.

Like a movie shown in fast forward, the rest of the evening was a blur, until I was finally and safely sleeping on the couch of Sam's beach house. Then the stomach rumbling began.

In the middle of the night, I went into the bathroom, dropped trow, and had a moving experience. I felt my body relax as it rid itself of all the toxins I had consumed of the night. There was something odd about it all though. Oh well, back to bed.

An hour or so later, sitll in complete darkness, I sprung up out of my sleep like a vampire rising out of the coffin. "What did I just do??"

I went into the bathroom and with complete hesitation, I turned on the light. There, staring at me, laughing, was a perfectly swirly poop ---- in the sink! "OH MY GOD!!!" I wrapped my hands in toilet paper and scooped out the massive turd into the toilet. It tooks several trips and many more handfulls of toilet paper to clean out the sink.

After I hid any evidence of my masterpiece, I went to the couch and went back to bed, never to tell Sam what had happened in her bathroom for 6 years.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Let's Get This Party Started

Finally!!!

I have started working again and I am so relieved. I was anxious about it the weekend before, not knowing if I remembered to do the stuff I said I could do. Now, sitting at my desk, I remember everything and am even more anxious to really jump in and do stuff.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

I'm still waiting for the start date of my new job. It's been 3 weeks since I signed the acceptance letters. Three weeks of sitting around, collecting unemployment checks, watching tv, getting annoyed by Barry and trying to find ways to occupy my time with minimum expense. To do that, I've been reading... a lot.

I bought a new book Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororities, and I can't put it down. I find the stories jaw-dropping. Some out of utter ridiculousness and some out of complete rememberence. I am an Alpha Xi Delta, graduating class of 1995. I have been chapter president, house manager and served on the alumnae advisory board for three years. Even now my closest friends are my sorority sisters. While I wouldn't have traded my time in the sorority for anything, I realized that my entire college career revolved around the Greek system. I wonder how college would have differed for me had I remainded an independant.

Reading this book, I'm reminded of the activities of sorority life. Sure there were the parties, the hook ups, the cattiness of 40 girls living in the same house and the stuff that you hear about in bad made-for-tv movies, but there were also those nights where we hung out watching movies, or snacking in the dining room talking about nothing but having the best time.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Road Trip

I have begun compiling this mental list of Things To Do Before I Die. It's mainly places around the world to visit or obscure acts of non-conformity to experience. I came across this book (1,000 Places to See Before You Die by Patricia Schultz)and as I flipped through it, I smiled proudly to myself when I saw that I could already check off items that I have already been to: The Alahambra in Spain, Stonehenge in England and Niagara Falls in Canada.

I was severely been bitten by the Travel Bug 4 years ago with by first trip to London, but I know that was only a matter of time. I was baptized in the Road Trip Religion by my parents when I was a baby. There are photographs of me as a 5 year old twerp sitting on the back of a donkey, both of us wearing a Mexican straw sombrero with Tiajuana on it, another of me holding on to my father's leg, terrified on the edge of the Grand Canyon and another of me squinting into the camera at the base of Lombard Street in San Francisco. I had arrived to all of these places in the back of a 1960-something Volkswagon Beetle from New Jersey with my parents and aunt and uncle. Apparantly my brother's early beginnings joined us, but I don't know how far along my mother was in her pregnancy.

In other trips, I remember walking down Bourbon Street in New Orleans, with my mother's hand over my eyes shielding me from the exposed flesh. I saw the Jungle Room in Graceland and floated in the Gulf of Mexico at Mobile, Alamaba. I have been camping with my family in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and have spent hours on the beaches of Rincon, Puerto Rico with sand in my bathing suit. It would go against my inner fibers to stay grounded in one place for too long. Each road trip my parents had taken me on was like a mother eagle throwing her chick out of the nest to practice flying. Soon those test flights would give way to trans-atlantic journeys.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Demolition Man


Demolition Man, originally uploaded by bearclau.

The house is full of bangs and shatters, whirring of motors and the occastional, "Shit" coming from upstairs. I sit at the family computer, while my parents are renovating bathrooms and shampooing carpet. My only accomplishment today was brushing my teeth. My hair is still a mess.

Even Barry, my dog, is happily exploring the boundaries of my parents' backyard, pissing on every vertical object and piercing every round object with his sharp teeth.

It's not that I don't *want* to help, but I tell myself that I'd only get in the way. The bathroom is only so large, and I wouldn't fit with my dad in there hauling away at the tiles. My mom gets into Cleaning Mode where things have to be done Her way or no way. Since I don't often adhere to Her way, it's in both of our self interests for me to stay away.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Who Me??

Barry cracks me up.

Just now, he was watching me put stuff away when he let a squeaker fart loose. To his utter confusion, he perked up his ears and looked back at his butt as if to say, "What the hell was that?? Was that me?"

Yes, I can confirm by the smell that it definately was you.

 Posted by Hello

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Feeling Guilty


Mystery Dog, originally uploaded by bearclau.

For being so bored this morning that I put a sock over Barry's head. When I got up, he came to follow me and walked head first into the wall and my first reaction was to fall on the floor laughing in hysterics.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Waiting Game

I've accepted a contracting job. Not really the one that I want, but it was the one that was offered to me after one interview. I've done contracting work at this company before, so it will be a pretty smooth transition. According to my recruiter, the hiring manager said that the decision to select me was a "no brainer".

I still have hopes for the other company, though. I interviewed well with them and when I flat out asked James, the recruiter there what the interest was in me, he said that my name has been thrown around many times in staffing meetings and they were just looking to see where I could fit in. Except, I couldn't afford - both financially and mentally - to be out of work, so I reluctancy said yes to the contracting gig.

Now that I know that I'll be starting a new job next week, this week is going by very slowly. I've spent the afternoon browsing in Barnes & Noble (again) and tomorrow I'm going into NYC to meet my cousins for lunch. Maybe I'll go in early morning to see a museum or something. I jut hope that the weather warms up.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Safety Net

It's been just over two weeks since I've been laid off. That's about as long as I can go staying in one spot, doing very little to not waste my reserve finances. I don't know how long I'll be this way and now the looming responsibility of mortgate payments are hiding in the back of my mind. But I do have to drag myself out of the house for lunch dates with friends, roaming in the bookstore isles and matinee movies. I've started singing nonsensical songs to Barry just to hear my own voice. I have to start working again - either that, or go on another vacation. But I know I really can't afford that right now.

Some good news might be in sight. In those two weeks, I've been on multiple interviews for four different positions. Yesterday I was given an offer. I feel much better now knowing that an income will be coming in very soon. It is for a company where I have contracted before, so I feel pretty confident about it. But I have another interview tomorrow afternoon that I figure I'll still go on to see what happens. They already know that I have an offer, so I'm hoping that they'll be in a position to make a decision quickly. There is also a third company where I have already had 2 interviews. I contacted the recruiter there to see if they were still interested in me. When I told him that I already had an offer and needed to make a decision by Thursday, he was going to see if he can schedule the last interview for me in time.

My hope would be to have a choice. It's all about choices.

Monday, February 28, 2005

Ranting

I haven't felt very much like writing. Not in here, at least.

I have a 'meeting' to go to up in north Jersey this afternoon. I'm not sure it qualifies as an interview because I'm not meeting this person at his office, but at the company of where I used to work. But what makes it even more annoying is that a snowstorm is about to hit this afternoon and I'm not really in the mood to be driving 40 miles in it when it starts.

Stupid job search.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Deja Vu all over again

Well, yesterday afternoon I got laid off. I really wish I had knows while I was on vacation because I would have spent the night in Key West and taken longer getting home.

This really comes as no surprise, though. There wasn't any new work coming in and the work that we did have was suddenly being halted at the middle of the night by the client. You can imagine the moral at that place. It was dreary and quiet on the development floor of that place anyway. It was a cold and uninspiring place to be.

But the good news is that I have an interview this morning. It's a second interview actually since I had the first phone one while I was in Florida.

I'll be crossing my fingers...

Thursday, February 03, 2005

A, B and C

A. First, recommend to me:
1. A movie:
2. A book:
3. A musical artist, song, or album:

B. I want everyone who reads this to ask me three questions, no more, no less. Ask me anything you want.

C. Then, I want you to go to your blog, copy and paste this allowing your friends to ask you anything they want!

(lifted from Daisyhead)

Spring anyway I can

Spring anyway I can
I just got a new cameraphone. Let the fun begin!

Changes in Latitudes

I have this feeling inside that it's time for a change in latitude. Maybe it was reading Jimmy Buffett's book and listenting to his tunes, maybe it's my horoscope telling me that I need a change in scenery and that a road trip is in the cards, maybe it's the f'n cold that has dried my skin so much that I look like an aligator. Or maybe it could be that I'm so bored here at work and there is no better time to take off and hop in the car.

I'm thinking about driving down 95 and making my way to southern Florida. I have family there where I can crash. I think I can make some stops along the way in Savannah and Tampa. Maybe say 'Hi' to Mickey Mouse. Or maybe I'll take a trip to Key West just to have a 'Cheeseburger in Paradise'.

The trick will be to not think to hard about it and just do it. Tell work that I want to take next week off - unpaid if need be. Finish up the little stuff that I've been working on this week and by Sunday night, pack a bag, my camera and iPod, fill the gas tank and drive south.

This sounds so wonderful. I have to do this. I hope I don't chicken out.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Groundhog Day




So Punxsutawney Phil made his prediction, and I'm not liking it. Six more weeks of winter. Not like you wouldn't have guessed with temperatures in the teens, but there was always hope.

Damn rodent!

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Friday, January 28, 2005

HE LOOKS LIKE....

HE LOOKS LIKE.... F'n funny, man!

Friday Four

FOUR FOR FRIDAY
Q1: If a stranger leaves a voicemail message on your home phone for someone you don't know, do you call the person back to tell them they reached the wrong party? If your answer is no, are there any circumstances under which you think you would call the person back?
Normally, I wold just delete the message. However, if the message involved a desperate plea to reach someone, family emergency for example, I might let them know that they need to update their contact information.

Q2: Currently, no federal laws exist which prohibit using a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. Proponents of restricting cell phones while driving point to studies that show that their use while driving contributes to distractions, which lead to accidents. Opponents of these restrictions say there is insufficient evidence to conclude that mobile phones are any different from other distractions to drivers. What do you think...should automobile drivers be allowed to talk on the phone while driving?
I wouldn't want to be 'not allowed' to talk on the phone, but this is really just common sense. Use a headset. My car is a stick shift and it would just be impossible and completely dangerous to use the phone without my headseat.

Q3: Industry conferences and trade shows afford their attendees with opportunities to see 'what's next'. For example, at the Outdoor Retailer Show, outdoor recreation industry professionals, i.e., manufacturers, retailers, guides, and the media, all get a sneak peek at the outdoor gear we'll see in stores at some point in the future. If you could choose to attend any one industry conference or trade show, complete with full access to everything and everybody at the show, which industry would you choose?
With the purchase of my new home, I would love to go to those home gadget tradeshows. What would make it even better is if they would give me a goodie bag of each new cool thing.

Q4: Do you have a favorite weird food or weird drink combination? If so, what is it? If not, did you ever have one when you were growing up?
I can't think of anything wierd. The only constant snack I've kept is a glass of cold milk and 6 cookies (no more, no less) before I go to bed.

Holy Shit!

Massive cow manure mound burns for third month

This article puts everything into perspective. Never again will I complain about picking up Barry's poop, no matter what the consistency.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Thinking

Although I feel sorry for Barry because he has whipworms, when he poops, he makes this hysterical farting noise. Kinda like a whoppee cushion. What's not funny is picking up the mess that's created from his explosive pooping.

Monday, January 24, 2005

And they call it puppy love...

Last night was a perfect night to just chill out in front of the fire, watching a movie, curled on the couch drinking hot chocolate. Barry was curled up by my feet, his head resting on my ankles.

Barry must have been moved by the romantic mood because he had this look in his eye. Curious, I sat up on my side of the couch to see what he would do. He walked over to me, wrapped his front paws around my knee and started humping. Then his pocket rocket appeared and I gave him the big 'NO!'. I shoved him off the couch and he just looked confused and rejected. He hopped back up on the couch to try a different approach.

S..l..o..w..l..y he made his way back to me on the couch. I was watching him with a smirk on my face because a horny little dog is kinda funny. Very non-chalantly heput his front paws on my leg and made just the smallest humping movements. Like I wouldn't notice. He was back on the floor in 2 seconds.

Poor Barry. He was cooped up in the house and just wanted some lovin'. I can't wait for his nuts to be snipped off. I can't go on rejecting his advances forever, it would be so bad for his ego.

But hey, at least I know I still got it going on!

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Blizzard 2005


Little dog in a big world. Posted by Hello

At 5:30am I heard the whining and scratching at the bathroom door where Barry was spending the night. It was at that moment that I realized the sacrifices of my Mother. I now had my own 'child', a living thing to take care of. Something that needs things. And right now, in the wee hours of the morning with a blizzard wailing outside, my 'child' needed to pee.

I ventured outside first, all bundled up in my snowpants, coat, hat, gloves and scarves. I couldn't find my snowboarding goggles, or believe me, I would have had them on too. The snow has accumulated to about 12 inches, which is manageable for me, but Barry is probably about 18 inches high. Exposing your bare butt to the snow is bad enough, I didn't want him to have to drag it completely through while finding a place to pee. I went out, shovel in hand and carved him an area where he could go to the bathroom.

The things I do for this kid.


Barry takes comfort indoors. Posted by Hello

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Shit Happens

Running through six inches of snow with a dog in a gay coat in one hand and a bag of poop in the other is not my idea of a romantic Saturday night.

Friday, January 21, 2005

You better not call me gay in this coat!


 Posted by Hello
Winter has shown her brutal side and the temperature is dropping. Ok, so it's not like it's Minnesota or anything, but it's still F'ing cold.

As much as I enjoy the comforts of a warm house and the ability to use a toilet, Barry is not as lucky. In order for him to relieve himself, without hearing a loud 'NO!', he has to take is tiny little four-legged self outside into the cold and snow to expose his little nutsack to the elements. What makes it even worse was that he was doing it naked and barefoot. Barry would get into his three-legged stance, right leg balancing high in the air as his whole body trembled. Even after he was done peeing, he would still walk around with at least one leg off the ground, trying to escape it from the freezing earth. It was pitiful and hilarious at the same time.

I went off to the pet store (which is just one of the many times this past week) to find a sweater for Barry. I had very limited choices. I was looking for a nice understated knit sweater. One that looked sophisticated yet menacing. Unfortunately, the only one available in his size was that red plaid Groundskeeper Willie coat. I also got him little booties for his paws, but he hasn't gotten used to them yet and they fall right off within 4 steps.

Oh how the other dogs will laugh at him. I feel bad for Barry because he hasn't even had the chance to make a first impression. He's been away from other dogs while he gets over his kennel cough. When he finally gets to meet the dogs in my neighborhood, he'll have this stigma of being a sissy dog with the pansy coat. He'll have to piss on them to show who's boss.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Hoping

I have a date tonight. It's with a younger man. His name is Barry and I hope that the meeting will go well. He has four legs.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Insanity By Reason of Cold

-9 degrees?? Are you kidding me? Why would you want to live in a place that goes down to -9 degrees? Does it numb your brain? I bet it's freezing to sit on the toilet seat in the middle of the night. I think I would form a cocoon of microfleece blankets and lay under the covers until the world thawed out. I think I would take a bath in hot chocolate and drink the tub empty. I think I would light my toes on fire just for the warmth.

Either that, or move.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Free Bird

I am officially single. Wednesday night, I drove out to Jim's mom's house (where he's staying) to drop off his guitar. I left the box of other things still in my car. Jim was hanging out in the back bedroom watching tv, shoeless. As I greeted him, there was no hug, no kiss, just a strained 'I haven't seen you in over a month' akwardness. When I told him that I also had more stuff in the car, he asked "Are you tying to tell me something?"

I just shrugged my shoulders and he sighed.

I brought in the box and sat on the bed with Jim while his parents watched tv in the other room.

I told him how I haven't been happy for a long time and he knew that. That this period he was going through was something that he needed to do on his own and I coudn't do it anymore. Plus, I knew that everything coming out of my mouth lately was 'nag, nag, nag', (which he heartily agreed with me) and neither of us wanted to hear that.

It was a calm conversation. It was mature and decent. The most important issue behind my wanting to end the relationship was that I wasn't happy and that Jim wasn't independant. That was made clear and those reasons alone were valid enough for anyone. But I didn't mention my other reasons - but I didn't feel the need to be cruel.

Regardless, neither of us are angry with each other, so I'm sure we'll be talking again in the future. I will miss his son terribly and I will think about him often. But I'm not sad about my decision. I actually feel lighter. Like I can fly.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Women's Best Friend

I think I'm ready to trade in Jimmy for a dog. I'm going down to see Jim after work to drop off his guitar and other stuff that he left at my house. Oh, and I'm going to break it off. I'm not going to ignore it anymore. I'm just going to say that the relationship isn't working anymore and that I'm unhappy. And then I'll leave.

At least, that's my plan.

Monday, January 10, 2005

I Want You To Want Me

I have an interview this afternoon. It's another contract gig at Novartis, but with a different group. I was given the list of responsibilities and requirements last week and knew instantly that I could do it, so I handed in my resume. My friend Annie, who handles the recruitment for contractors said that the manager is all gung-ho for me. It's the project management and technical background that won her over.

I'm not really nervous about this interview. Not that I don't care, or that I'm overly confident, but it's just me talking to another person. There isn't really anything scary or intimidating about it. I'm not desperate for this job, but if it's interesting and the people are nice, and they want me, then I'll be ready for it.

I think that's the secret for successful interviews. Don't be desperate. Be confident in yourself.

That sounds like exactly the same advice I should follow in my relationships. I gotta work on that one.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Women Power

In my midst of mindless blog surfing, I came across this one entry that I found particularly touching. Shoulder to Shoulder Into the Fray.

I felt so proud of those girls who have the energy to let their voices be heard. I hope they keep it up.

Spatial Intelligence





Your Dominant Intelligence is Spatial Intelligence



You've got a good sense of space and how the world around you looks.
You can close your eyes and "see" images. You have innate artistic talent.
An eye for color and shapes, you're also a natural designer.
Since you think in pictures, visual aids and demonstartions help you learn best.

You would make a good navigator, sculptor, visual artist, inventor, architect, interior designer, or engineer.



Thinking...

I am spending my time here in the home office doing nothing but read other blogs. I check out each one's Link section and see where it leads. There has to be something wrong when I'm still getting paid some pretty decent bucks to do nothing but surf from web ite to website. And to top it off, I would so much rather be doing some real work that will actually challenge me. This is the biggest waste of my time.

Big Dreams

I think I need to get me a baby hippo.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Gimme a B, Gimme an O...

I hate being bored. To me, it's the greatest form of torture. Needless to say that I'm completely bored with the majority of things in my life right now. I need a little excitement to shake things up.

The contract work I was doing ended at the end of the year, so now I'm at the home office of my company doing a lot of nothing. Monday, Beth and I went out shopping for 4 hours. Fortunately, I was told of another contract opportunity. It some kind of online training coordinator. I saw the requirements list and I can do everything that's listed. So I updated my resume and handed it in to our Human Resources department for placement. Turns out the manager there is interested in my resume so I'll be setting up an interview soon.

I thought I would be happy coming back to the home office, but I was completely wrong. For one, the work environment sucks. It's uninspiring to look at. The chairs hurt my back and the whole desk setup is totally un-ergonomic. You never know how much you miss under-desk mounted keyboard drawers until you don't have them anymore. Plus, the freezer door in the kitchen is completely iced over and frozen shut. It's disgusting. Beth called me a 'princess' because I was complaining so much about it. I just think that she's been living with this sub-standard working environment for so long that she's just used to it.

Relationship... I'm bored with that too. I think Jim has his own path to take to get where he needs to be and it's a path that I just don't need to be on. I've already done that. I don't want to backtrack. I'm not ready to face what I know I have to do yet.

I'm also bored at home, but I think that will change. From being so sick for the past week, I was stuck there unable to do anything. The laundry piled up, crap piled up and now I'm surrounded by little piles of boxes, papers, various objects all over the place. The thought of them there all unorganized is stating to drive me crazy and I know that I will quickly hit my tolerance level and begin to put my home in order soon. But until I get to my boiling point I hang out in Barnes & Noble reading books in the aisles and giving myself any excuse for not going home.

Sigh. I hate the winter blahs.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Happy Goo Year

The new year has started off with a bang, or should I say a cough and sniffle.

Starting the Sunday after Christmas, I have been violently ill with the flu. It started as a small scratch at the back of my throat as I was wandering the streets of Greenwich Village in the snow. I thought my exhaustion was due to spending all afternoon walking around NYC, but come Monday morning at work, my entire body shut down and by 1:00 pm, I was home in bed under the covers, shivering and coughing with every muscle of my body in pain. The worst part of the entire ordeal was coughing so hard that I wet my pants. How's that for a regression to pre-potty training days.

For five days my body was in a constant battle between the forces of good and evil. I survived on a diet of meds, soup and peanut butter sandwiches. I was barely alive. Finally my mother returned on vacation on Friday so I gathered myself up and went to my parents' house for some well needed pampering. The best part was actually eating real food. I just had to think of something good and nourishing to eat and it appeared at the kitchen table. I had endless supplies of cough medicine, tissues, tea and mentholated steam for me to breathe in. I was still not well, but life was more bearable. Moms can do that.

Finally, more than a week since that first throat tickle, I'm finally beginning to feel better. The snot is finally starting to run clear instead of that slimy yellowish-green crap that it used to be. Yeay for sinus infections!