Tuesday, August 30, 2005

booze-breathing bachelor

i flew down to saint louis for my sixth annual choreography session this weekend. ensconced comfortably in my aisle seat, i broke out a magazine and dialed up the ipod to the "chillax" playlist for a short but pleasant ride.

have you ever found yourself just honing in on an annoying sound? since my hermetically-sealing sony earbuds have all but decomposed from the corrosive effluvia that is my earwax, i was rocking the stupid white ipod phones through which you can hear everything. i could not help but focus on this particularly loud, raspy baritone voice from in front of me. i tried to let it go, remembering that i also have trouble selecting the correct volume of voice since i can't always hear well, but this squawking was accompanied by bursts of foulness. the voice had apparently tied one on the night before and was exhaling the reek of metabolized booze. this man's liver was kicking out smoke signals like crazy.

i finally looked up to see... charlie o'connell, also known as the bachelor. he was seated next to some schlubby midwestern businessman who had no idea who he was, and they were helping each other with crossword puzzles. awww...

it didn't seem like he ever really let on that he was an actor [and who could blame him? he's in a crappy coach seat.] but his volume seemed a little desperate. i wondered if he was annoyed no one seemed to recognize him. i just wanted to stop huffing his pickled insides.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

sweet, don't fail me now!

i've said it before and i'll say it again: there is something magical about the creative power of candy. i've been plodding along on this choreography for about a month now, tinkering with eight-counts here, tweaking turn combinations there.

since i'm off to memphis for meetings, i decided to try and crank out the last sections last night. armed with a bag of buderim ginger bears, i plowed through six eight-counts of complicated duo and trio work, sassy little solo parts, and the dreaded... hip hop section! i emerged triumphant at 2am from my bedroom [where i flop around in front of my full length mirror] like a doctor after removing a huge malignant tumor.

how mighty is this sweet manna of the muses? one of my very close friends who earns a substantial part of her income choreographing for dance teams visited the dentist to discover she had four cavities.

the dentist asked her, "do you eat a lot of candy?"
"everyday," she replied.
"it's got to stop," he commanded.

she has since made efforts to curtail her dependency but was last seen in a quiktrip in belleville, illinois having succumb to the demon of sweets.

Friday, August 19, 2005

f*cking cats 2: thwarting al qatta

the nefarious chippy bin laden

since my work phone doesn't really ring at this time of year, i decided to bring my laptop into my living room and do some work there. wrapped in my lightweight charcoal grey modal robe sipping expensive handrolled tea, i felt very serene. the late morning light shone through the large trees in front of the picture window, bathing the room in a pleasant pale olive hue. the yellow-green margins of my snake plants in their big copper trough glowed. the green carpeting is vacuumed, the taupe pillows are propped comfortably on my black leather couch, and jackson is snoozing happily in a nest made of a taupe chenille throw. the house smells fresh -- of candles and homemade tea tree surface cleanser -- and all seems right with the world until...

i discover more cat shit!

i have been religiously tending to the litter boxes which are now filled with what we believed to be a more acceptable clumping litter made of corn. at least once a day, i comb the corn sand, removing all clumps for flushing down the toilet. you'd think i was a greenskeeper at a golf course or at least the caretaker of zen garden. things have been going well, and regular peeks under the air conditioner have yielded no new poops. today, however, i saw the burgeoning creation of yet another crappalooza. armed with a roll of aluminum foil and scotch tape, i crafted a large crinkly blanket to place at ground zero. i read this is an efficient deterrent. we'll see about that.

while cleaning up the new mess, i imagined the three cats as a small islamic extremist cell. after all, chippy is persian. not al qaeda -- al qatta. through any means necessary, these felonious felines have been instructed to bring havoc and misery to their bourgeois american hosts. i gotta hand it to them: they are efficient machines of chaos.

my next attempt to deter operation shitstorm is a nightlight near the boxes.

attention: bloglines users!

if you post directly from bloglines, your post will not be read.

apparently, bloglines detects my defunct blogger comments as the default commenting service, however, those actually viewing the page have no access to your comments as i use haloscan. the only way i know that you're posting at all is that i receive your post on blogger comments via email. ergo, your witty comments are for naught.

if you have no idea what all the mumbledy-gobbledy-gook is above, don't worry. just have a great friday.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

the no delivery zone

"you're entering a dimension of bad chana masala, you're entering..."

since casey was leaving for london and frankfurt for eight days, we decided we'd forgo cooking and order in something decadent... indian!

i love indian food and when it comes to delivery, i was so excited to yank open the menu drawer and order from what i thought was the only delivery joint around the near north side -- raj darbar. i call 'em up. an old indian man answers and asks for my phone number, which i give. he then recites our name and address, clearly indicating that he has on record that we've ordered there before. he then asks,

"vere ees dut? vaht meen streets?" i give him the main intersection closest to us. "vee don't go dere. dut ees too far."

i argued, "but you've delivered to us in the past. i mean, that's why i'm calling. the only reason i'm calling is that i know you've delivered here before."

"you ordered here in december?" he queries.

"uh, i'm not sure exactly when, but..."

"yes. eet vahs december." then, nonsensically, he says, "dut ees too far. vee are in downtown chicago."

"wait: am i not calling 2600 north halsted?!" for those readers not familiar with chicago, the numbers get smaller the closer you are to downtown where the numbers are, at the most, three digits. he said he'd ask the driver if it was too far. about three minutes go by and i hear nothing. it didn't sound like they were mobbed.

"no. dut is too far." i couldn't be polite. i tried, but this is the second restaurant [the other being la gondola] that has suddenly cut us from their delivery area, despite our fervent pleas. i slammed the phone down.

instead, we fired up grub hub, what i'm realizing is a purveyor of crappy delivery places from which everyone else has learned not to order, and found another indian place. not only was the minimum delivery charge kinda steep [$35], the food took forever and gave us each the worst indigestion. i feel like an onion exploded in my stomach, and i'm pretty sure some invisible phantom dog shit in casey's mouth. made for a really romantic evening.

Monday, August 15, 2005


recently, we paid a team of four men to severly whack the crap out of our yard. here is a list to suggest what i mean:

  • completely yanked all rose bushes. rose bushes are a tool of the devil and must be stopped.
  • removed all scorched ferns. we had way too many and since we removed this one really big tree, they were all a tangled mass of burned plant matter. boo.
  • eased up on the tigerlily action. we had what was quickly becoming a large unruly mass of tigerlilies [which casey hates anyway] spewing from under our magnificent burning bush, preventing the sun from getting to areas of our nice new sod.
  • de-weed-ified. in some areas, the sheer mass of weed growth was simply no match for your phaneromaniacal friend. our amigos went to town.
  • bye-bye peach tree. yes, it was, at one time, a gorgeous tree with bright fuscia flowers, but it fell into the house [klassily propped up with a length of plywood], had limbs removed while other branches just plain died.

now, the yard is eerily empty. i would hate to see the faces on the couple who lived here before us if they saw what we've done. our yard was quite the native jungle, a magnificent and unruly mess of native wildflowers [many weeds] when we moved in. not so much anymore.

faced with a clean slate, i ran out and got you grow girl: the groundbreaking guide to gardening by gayla trail. if you think all gardening books are for suburban old ladies with loads of cash, land, and time, you should check this out. if you like all diy projects labeled with a difficulty rating, you should check this out. if all you have is a fire escape, you should check this out.

can't wait to fire up the vermicomposter!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

what's your weirdness?

hey, there's... what's his name again? click to marvel at his enormity.

you know. something that you do that everyone else usually sees and says, "oh, there you go again... who does that?"

here's some of my weirdness:

repeater. i have always had a habit of repeating the exact same stories to people over and over. like a personal electronic docent you can rent in a museum, i think these mental tapes get triggered by certain stimuli, such driving by a restaurant or seeing a commercial on tv. casey has learned to pre-empt my repeatronics with something like, "lemme guess: the ad exec responsible for this ad campaign has a daughter on st. exandeau high school's dance team, right?" or "uh-huh. i know -- when you were a kid and you hung out here on the weekends, you used to call that [points to the dunkin donuts on clark & belmont] 'punk'in donuts."

anti-smell. i don't like smelling things, specifically people. i have held my breath when people walk by, not because they reek, but because i don't want to accidently inhale a lungful of their stank if they do. i won't smell food on a plate or someone's mouth to check for bad breath. can't do it, guys. i can usually detect teeth in dire need of flossing already. not gonna lean in there.

computer apnea. i tend to hold my breath while at the computer. i have had people remind me to breathe because, when i don't, it sounds like i'm smoking a spliff and trying to hold it in.

chronic cat namer. i can't stop renaming my poor cat. fortunately, he seems to be following along just fine somehow. i mean, his official name is jackson, but here are the other incarnations in the years we've had him:

  • fatty b
  • the fat man
  • gumblequeue
  • g.b.q.
  • gumblese
  • gumble
  • gumby
  • rumblecrumps
  • gumbaloney
  • bubbles

in truth, i do have a partner in crime on that, but only because i believe i have afflicted him with my sickness. alas, casey has more creative naming choices:

  • mahvry
  • junior juice
  • negronimicron
  • li'l gus
  • gumbledog
  • gumblesaurus
  • key hidden in purse at all times. i'm really good at locking my car with the key in the ignition... running.

    that thing that hangs down in your throat? yeah. i've got two. technically, it's called a bifid uvula and it's really more like split in half. sexy, huh?

    what is your weirdness?

    Tuesday, August 09, 2005

    it's time for.... the strenuous rebuttal!

    dear readers,

    the name for this site was carefully chosen. i didn't elect to name it as i have only because i have always been a picker of things and just happened to have the etymological wherewithal to know the name of my obsession. this journal is about picking at the blights of everyday life.

    face it, folks: on the whole, our days are filled with hurdling the annoying obstacles of humanity. isn't that the fodder for every comedian worth his or her salt? who's leaving the oscars saying,

    "that chris rock sure is one major negatron bomber. dude's gotta lighten up! look at how, like, rich and successful he is. his material would be much more funner if he talked about how kickass he has it! cheese-and-rice, what a f*cking downer, man! i hate chris rock!"

    i love laughing. i love human nature. i love the idea that our perception of everything is absolutely relative to our own personal experiences [mad props to my sixth-grade english teacher, mr. panitch, for teaching me that life-wisdom]. i love that the world is filled with eleventy-jillion varieties of freakshow. you know what else? i love looking at all of it with a magnifying glass, just like i loved looking at pondwater in my microscope when i was little [yeah, i was that kid]. humanity, warts and all, is fascinating, hilarious, and exasperating at the same time. i'd love to master it, to know how to grip its reins and ride it without getting bucked off, but even the best rider gets saddle sores.

    on the topic of mastery, there seems to be a no one's perfect motif in the commentary as of late that i wanted to address, too. for the record, allow me to acknowledge that perfect does not exist.
    there is no perfect.
    no one is perfect.
    nothing is perfect or, for that matter, normal.

    we're just all students of the earth, trying to learn as much as we can. i don't sit around, finding ways to decimate everyone's character all day long. i'm sad to know some of you think i do. i'm sorry and i don't.

    lastly, consider the journal. whether it be the lowly hello kitty diary with shoddy locking mechanism hidden between the mattresses, the elegant livre which oprah anoints regularly with expensive ink, or a nationally acclaimed techno-snazzy blog, the writer is driven by the desire to expel mindchatter. the journalist feels relief giving thoughts words, just as the churchgoer feels peace reciting prayer aloud and the recovering addict stands before a room of strangers and recounts her last harrowing episode.

    if you want to write about how wonderful everything in the world is, how every person you encounter each day touches your life in a magical way, how you were overcome with joy gazing at the reflection that is the glory of your pink puckered rectum in the toiletwater this morning, i encourage you to explore that desire. otherwise, when you find a blog that satisfies your need to read someone else's endlessly warm and fuzzy musings, be sure to send me the link, wouldja?


    Friday, August 05, 2005

    i hate friends

    it sounds like an oxymoron, but i do.

    here's a newsflash for you kids out there: even when you're far from high school and fully into adulthood, people will still be childishly possessive with their buddies. you don't grow out of it, despite what anyone has told you.

    there's nothing like feeling as though your closest friend is cheating on another friend with you. meanwhile, your other formerly very close friend interrupts you midsentence to share her new laura mercier makeup purchase with whoever she has declared the new flavor-of-the-month. f*cking ridiculous.

    my original lament was that this is strictly a girl-friend thang, and that, if i was to ever have very close girl-friends, i would have to put up with this f*cking bullsh*t. see, my closest friends all through school were guys and i never had these issues. i had great acquaintences that were girls, but i hung out on weekends with guys. casey, however, insists that petty personal politics are shared by all the human race, and that guys are, in fact, just as exclusionary.

    what do you think? do women culturally cherish friendships more because they're so g*ddamn hard to get along with or are men just as bad?

    Wednesday, August 03, 2005

    f*cking cats

    you put the lime in the coconut and scold until it hides under the bed

    anyone who knows me knows i love cats. furthermore, i'm kind to animals [even big stinky dogs] and believe the world should evolve into a more cruelty-free place. i've even gone through orientation to volunteer [albeit briefly] at a no-kill cat shelter around the corner.

    without beating a dead horse [i even hate that expression], i love cats; however, a very recent discovery of some havoc they've been wreaking has infuriated and frustrated me to the point of tears. it's a wonder how betrayed you can feel when the little beasts you care for and love on, sleep with and dote on are secretly crafting an absolute shocking nightmare right under your nose. it feels like getting cheated on by my college boyfriend [a slightly fey yet womanizing cheerleader named todd] only i got to throw him through a window and pop his waterbed with a ballpoint pen for that.

    little sneaky, hairy, motherf*cking sh*tbags. grrrr...

    Tuesday, August 02, 2005

    god is in the details. i'm its unwilling servant.

    it's part of my phaneromaniacal demeanor to correct errors. this trait has some good and bad points:

    good points
  • enables me to be better at catching spelling and punctuation errors
  • when i'm cleaning things, i can be quite thorough
  • with dancers, i can catch those niggling variances in body position
  • i can pick weeds like a champ
    • bad points

    • i compulsively correct incorrect grammar
    • i reflexively ejaculate criticism of incorrect pronunciation or word usage
    • i mercilessly fixate on peoples' blackheads, stray eyebrows, funky teeth, etc.
    • i can be a relentless kibbitzer

      to top it all off, i'm a sagittarius: notorious for tactlessness and lack of self-editing. needless to say, while i do believe my obsession with detail has helped me tremendously in a professional sense, i do a good job of pissing off people left and right, no matter how kindly i turn my phrase. i find myself having to physically cover my mouth with my hand to remind myself to shut up at times because i just can't stop myself.

      when asked whether i would like it if someone did the same to me, i'd have to say frankly, yes. yes, for the large part, i welcome correction. i hate reflecting later on a moment and thinking, "oahu isn't the big island, you asshole; hawaii is. why did that person just look me dead in the face when i made that mistake?" or "derisive is mean talk. divisive is dissenting. how embarrassing." somebody stop me!

      for everyone i give an unwelcome knee-jerk correction, i'm sorry. there should be a medication for this disease.