creative writing, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy

Don’t Wanna, Can’t Make Me, and Sweet Dreams are Made of These

moretheyexpectSo, for a brief sanity break, leave those who were raised by wolves to figure things out for themselves from time to time.

The zoo calls that “enrichment” time for the animals.  Let the bears dig their dinner out of a bucket instead of just putting it in front of them. It makes their lives more fun. Or at least, it makes it more fun for the humans to watch.

I strive to have high standards for myself, but I don’t really expect much from rest of the world.  I know that might sound arrogant, but should I expect anything from anyone, even if I spell it out clearly, odds are that they will disappoint.  The old axiom, “if you want it done right, do it yourself,” certainly does apply in my life, although I should re-word it a bit for the 21st century.

“If I want it done at all, I better do it.”

If I keep my standards low, then when someone actually does perform adequately or appropriately, I am pleasantly surprised.  It’s sort of a twisted way of looking at the glass as being half full.

Of course there are some things I could give a rat’s ass less whether they’re done or not, because they just don’t make an appearance on my priority list.

assmaster

I’m not a sports fan.  I struggle to commit to regular workouts for my health’s sake.  I’m still trying to learn to enjoy exercise.  I appreciate being able to go to the Y and use the machines and the pool there, but the only person I compete against as far as fitness or athletic (in)ability is myself.

I will make time to work out, but I still don’t care to watch sports.  Especially next month when they will be clogging up TruTV with that March Madness basketball mess.  I know some people want to watch basketball, but why on the same channel that “World’s Dumbest” is on?  Why not cut a few of the late night pecker pump infomercials and have basketball on then?

I can’t say I am a huge fan of constantly dusting things either.  I don’t dust as often as I should, but dusting is one of those exercises in futility that I positively loathe.  Jerry is a constant smoker, which creates even more dust than what would be in a normal house.  That nasty nicotine encrusted film covers everything in the house.  If I get to it, I get to it, but it’s not one of my really compelling priorities.  I can dust the whole frigging house from top to bottom and the filmy sludge will return in less than a day.  To me that seems like an insane waste of time, which reminds me of poor Sisyphus.  We the unwilling, doing the impossible for the ungrateful.  Sometimes I think I have more in common with Sisyphus than I’d like to acknowledge.

unwilling

I know I torqued Jerry off last night by not fixing him dinner, however, he has spent the last few days being particularly obnoxious.  Last night I did make a special trip to get him chocolate milk.  That favor was greeted with a tirade about how he had to get up and lock the door.  I was gone for five minutes, in broad daylight, and the door leading into the kitchen was locked.  The outside door was unlocked because it’s a little easier to only have to dig for one key- once you’re already in the foyer- when it’s cold and your hands are full.  But since His Nibs doesn’t do anything that might involve carrying in groceries or anything like that, he wouldn’t know.

It’s my own fault for being too nice.

Paradise_Garden_Wallpaper_pkuk6Here’s a lovely little slice of paradise.  Or it would be, if there were a pool and a pool boy.

The bad thing about me and utopian scenes is that I’m always the one who cues in on the one nasty thing in the picture.  For me the idyllic scene above becomes:

Paradisecrapperfiretacos

This would be the kind of dream I have.  Everything is perfect for a minute, and then there’s flaming porto johns, Richard Simmons, and flatulence-provoking taco references.

Now here would be my definition of a nightmare:

detroit 3It would be my luck that when I die I’ll end up in Detroit.

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assorted rants, dogs, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy, political commentary

Independence Day, Historical Education and Various Curiosities

I think this poster to be a fitting theme for Independence Day.  I don’t particularly want to be a subject of King Obama I any more. Neither should anyone else with a brain.  Wake the eff up people!!!!

Oh, and WTF has this post not been saving for some bizarre reason?   This is attempt #3 and it’s really pissing me off.

Yesterday, because it was too hot for me to spend more than a few seconds outside,  I spent most of the day watching the History Channel’s series on the American Revolution, and I learned many interesting facts that either I had forgotten or that were hastily glazed over back when I studied American History in 7th grade.  I have a new sense of admiration for George Washington and his perserverance after watching that series.

Ronald Reagan took office when I was in 7th grade, (January 20, 1981) which was probably the most memorable event of 7th grade for me, so suffice to say a lot of time has passed since then.  I doubt if I had paid as much attention as I should have to history when I was 12 (I was probably paying more attention to Steve Perry than anything else at that time) but I probably remember more than most.

Now I really have to wonder about something.  Why is it the three biggest holes that I have had the bad luck to visit- Cleveland, Chicago and Detroit- have the most corrupt, nut job politicians ever?  Dennis Kucinich, until very recently, represented the Congressional district that includes Cleveland and the surrounding area.  Granted, Cleveland is not the biggest hole on the planet – Chicago is worse, and Detroit is the worst by far- but why do they keep reelecting nut jobs that help ensure that their hole stays a hole?

The only explanation I have, at least in Ohio, is the fact that public employees are pretty much owned by their unions- the unions drove out almost all of the heavy industry years ago, and with the exception of the UAW and a few others in private industry, the bulk of forced unionism in Ohio involves public employees.  So the unions have this huge base of campaign funding for their nut job candidates from their forced membership.  Sadder yet, is that the large majority of public employees in Ohio buy all the garbage their union PACs try so hard to sell.  Right to Work would solve some of the problem of high taxation and government waste and graft in Ohio, but with the captive audience and deep pockets the public employees’ unions have here, I hate to say there will be snowball fights in hell before that happens.  I am sure that most public employees in Ohio would be delighted to know that they have funded (and are funding) the Obama campaign, and they paid for our friend, Dennis Kucinich’s long tenure in Congress as well.

Ok, Dennis, we know if we wear our foil hats the Visitors can’t read our brain waves.  But Karl Marx still can.  He seems to be communicating with you just fine.

I had to deal with bottle rockets in the Cougar Pool again.  Now I think there’s a slow leak in the retaining ring that has caused most of the water to spill out too.  Beauty.  Ohio’s fireworks laws are really weird.  You can buy almost any firework known to man in Ohio- and the rednecks in the Drunk and Domestics do- as long as you sign a form that says you’ll be setting them off out of state.  Right…. These rednecks are going to go 100 miles in any direction to go across the border to set off their Roman candles, bottle rockets, etc.  That’s not happening.

I like fireworks as much as the next redneck, but not in town, and not when it disturbs my dogs so deeply.  I spent most of last night with a 65#, 101.6° bunkie, which was rather hot considering that it’s 95° outside at 10PM and the air conditioner is struggling to keep up.

Even poor Clara, the proud Malinois, is reduced to cowering up in Mommy’s bed when all that loud noise kicks in.  Sheena, however, does not give a damn.  She got all the pork rinds Jerry was giving out last night.

I wish Obama would stay out of Ohio.  It might cool down a bit when he leaves.

I’ve heard enough, thanks.  Go home.

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assorted rants, creative writing, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy

Dubious Distinctions, Freud Would Have a Field Day, and It’s Cougar Pool Time Again

I have not set up the Cougar Pool again, but I have everything ready to go- chlorine, shock, a brand new floatie, and a new filter kit.  I do not swim – at least I don’t dare dunk my head- in unchlorinated water.  I learned the lesson long, long ago when I got a wicked as hell ear infection from swimming at one of the reservoirs.   I should be thankful the water in the reservoirs is chlorinated before it ends up coming through my faucet if it’s that filthy.  I might go to a public beach at the reservoir, and I may consider wading, but I sure as hell am not dunking my head.  Never again.  I like the Cougar Pool water to be crystal clear and Ph perfect.  That way if I do want to dunk my head- or if I fall off the floatie- it’s all cool.  I shouldn’t catch any diseases at least.

So as soon as I clean off the back patio and make sure Jerry hasn’t left anything sharp lying around, it will be ready to go. I should know that Central Ohio in May is generally still Monsoon Season, and that the temperature still hasn’t quite stabilized at Stygian Heat yet.  We don’t put in vegetable plants until those two weeks or so between May 15 and Memorial Day for that reason.  It can snow in May.  Jerry will be a busy little camper with planting next week, but this week it’s supposed to rain and temperatures will only be in the 70’s at best.

Highs at 80° and above (somewhat consistently) are required to use the Cougar Pool.  There’s no heater, so if temperatures dip into the 50s at night, that will be one frigid pool the next day even with the greenhouse effect of the sun and the pool cover.

Isabel is 5# of all black feline sweetness- when she’s not being evil, that is.

I have to wonder about some of my dreams lately.  I think that I’m going to have to close the bedroom door so I don’t wake up to Isabel chewing on my hair again.  I don’t know why she does that, but it’s highly annoying.  Generally Clara and/or Lilo, and all the cats are quite welcome on the bed.  Sheena doesn’t attempt to get on the beds because her bad hips do not allow her to jump high enough, which is fine with me, because she lacks the precise motor skills the other dogs have.

Maybe Sheena’s a total klutz because she has no hip sockets, and the ball portions of her femurs just sort of free-float.

Even if it’s not painful- and it probably is- such a condition can’t allow for terribly fluid movement, but Sheena is what Sheena is.  Sheena usually simply flops at the side of the bed and splays out on the floor, occasionally grunting and snoring, but she’s a sound sleeper.  Clara and Lilo both are attentive to every little noise, and sleep very lightly, but when Sheena’s out, she’s out.  The cats usually simply curl up and purr and sleep and don’t give me any trouble.  Usually when the cats get annoying at night, it’s because their food bowl is empty, but I had filled the cats’ food bowl and the water bowl before I went to bed.  So who knows what Isabel’s problem was last night, but I really don’t need to have dreams of assorted men-I-think-are-hot chewing on my hair.

I really don’t think (at least I hope not) that Neal Schon would really want to chew on my hair (ewwwww) and spy on me in the shower.  I really don’t think any man alive would really want to do either of those things, (and one that would want to do either of those things would scare the hell out of me,) but dreams are weird.  When the old man puts a bottle nipple on a Heineken so he can drink beer whilst horizontal, well, that’s scary too.  Fortunately that too was a dream.  Jerry would never dream of drinking anything more highbrow than Bud Light, he doesn’t like beer in the bottle anyway, and if he could remain horizontal whilst drinking beer, he’d never leave the bed.

I was thinking about it this morning and realized I have the most bizarre luck.  It’s not necessarily bad, it’s not necessarily good- but my life seems to be an ode to Murphy’s Law.

1.  If I am “lucky” enough to get the last of a highly sought item, it will either be broken, missing pieces, or entirely not the thing pictured on the box.  I really couldn’t use *and should have checked, shame on me* the “last” pair of  size 7 sandals, on the clearance rack that I really wanted, only to get home and discover that there was one 7 and one 9 in the box.   I may be ill-proportioned, and the instep on my right foot is slightly higher than the left, but both feet are generally happy in a size 7.  9 is way the fark too big even for my higher-instepped right foot.   Bastards.  But, I should have checked.

2. If I remember to bring the DS when I have something boring to do that potentially involves sitting and waiting, I get right in.  If I forget the DS, I will encounter every imaginable delay and will get to spend an eternity either immersed in the abyss of daytime TV or buried in vapid, aged, so-called women’s magazines.   I don’t really get into too many periodicals.  At least the Vet has some good ones- Dog Fancy, Cat Fancy, and various scientific and veterinary journals and such.  But I really can’t take Glamour, People, Good Housekeeping or any of those “parenting” magazines.   That crud makes me want to vomit.   The good gossip rags ended when they stopped printing the Weekly World News.   That was Great-Grandma’s favorite gossip paper, even though she subscribed to them all for the entertainment value, and for the hope that they would lampoon Ted Kennedy yet again.  She really despised Ted Kennedy. WWN is still available online, but you have to have Internet access, and most Dr.s offices and such do not have free wi-fi.  It is nice to know, however, that someone is keeping track of who has the World’s Biggest Butt.  That piece of knowledge could be important.

3. I probably have more medical anomalies than 99% of the population.  While this makes me really popular when I’m in a medical setting, it can make my healthcare become a real circus.  I have had medical students, nursing students, ophthalmology students, phlebotomy students, you name it, get to observe my bizarre body as a instructional exercise.  Usually I don’t mind, because hey, maybe something about my bizarreness might benefit the cause of science, but sometimes it’s a bit off-putting.  The medical student who freaked out at being shown my CT scan before I had sinus surgery was priceless.  He stood there next to my family Dr., wide eyed, simply saying, “OH MY GOD, how does this poor woman stay standing???”  Not very well, I assure you.  It was even more fun when I went to the cardiologist for an echocardiogram several years ago, and of course, it was his day for the medical students.  They glared  at my beating heart on the monitor (which was kind of cool to watch,) as the Dr. (who seemed as excited as a kid in a candy store,) informed them, “This is classic rheumatic heart disease.  You usually don’t get to see this outside of the third world,”  as he pointed out my two damaged heart valves.  Special.  He also said that I probably won’t need them replaced until I’m 75 or so.  If I live that long, that is.  This doctor obviously didn’t know that for all intents and purposes I did grow up in the third world.   Just like Deliverance, only without the benefit of mountains or banjos.

Now, class, don’t put ’em in the bed like this. They might snap their necks, and that would make us look bad.

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assorted rants, cougardom, creative writing, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy

Victorian Death and Post-Mortem Photography, and Reworking the Wiring

I don’t know why, but I find post-mortem photography intriguing.  I know such a curiosity can be considered somewhat macabre- taking pictures of dead people is rather morbid and viewing them is even more so, but there is so much written in those pictures that is unsaid. 

Babies and children seem to be so over-represented in post-mortem pics, but the sad fact is that young children and infants routinely died of diseases that we either vaccinate against or that can be treated with antibiotics.  I’ve seen so many pics of bewildered looking mothers holding their dead babies for that final portrait.  It’s haunting even when one considers the high infant mortality rate of the time.  I’m sure the fact that it was a major accomplishment to get a child to live until his or her fifth birthday in those times did not make it any easier when infants died.

Today it is not as common to take pictures of dead people.  I took pics at Grandma’s funeral pretty much at Mom’s insistence (I will not post them) and more or less to remind myself why I do not want either the bad pink nightie treatment or an open casket funeral. Cremate my happy ass and put up a picture taken when I was still alive.  If anyone shows up, let them speculate on how nasty I looked at the hour of death or whether or not I looked better dead than alive.  Grandma, in spite of the funeral director’s art, did not “look good.”  Very few people do look good when they are laid out in a coffin getting ready to be sent off for the Big Sleep.  She died of either pancreatic cancer, liver failure, or congestive heart failure, or more likely, a combination of the effects of all three (she was 93, after all) and it was all the mortician could do to tone down the sick bright yellow glow of her skin.  They did a better job with Grandma than the funeral home who dolled up poor Aunt Ellen (I will never forget the Day-Glo orange lipstick,) but the restorative arts can only do so much.

I had to wonder about post-mortems where the dead dude (or chick) is standing.  The Victorians had a way around that too:

Sort of like a guitar stand for the dead.  This explains Keith Richards.  Screw the guitar, how about a stand to keep the guitarist vertical? Especially since he must be about 90 years old, and has probably been dead since 1980.

Now I know I am overworked and sleep deprived, but I like it like that.  I know better in a way, but today is the first day in a very long time that I actually came to work and wasn’t completely buried in more stuff than I can possibly get done.  Tomorrow will be different.  I should have asked to go home this PM since I really don’t have much to do, but the minute I do that, a.) I set a bad precedent for others, and b.) some sort of crisis will materialize that will turn into a full-blown cluster f— tomorrow.  Murphy’s Law is alive and well.

In all seriousness, I really do need to get a bit more balanced.  I have a really bad tendency to get focused on one thing and then I don’t really bother with anything else.  I’ve done that with overwork before and it wasn’t very good for my health.  Lately I’ve been living on Monsters and Subway and heavy metal which couldn’t be terribly good for a young kid, let alone a distressed old fossil such as me.  On the bright side, I am enjoying Metallica and Billy Squier and Queensryche and Led Zeppelin, so it can’t be all bad.

I’d like to get that EVO phone that Steve-o has been raving about that not only is Android-based, but has a camera in the front so you can have phone conversations and actually see who you’re talking to.  For the life of me I don’t know why anyone in their right mind would want to look at me on a phone screen, but to each his own.  I do want to be able to see my grandchild, which I think is the reason behind this logic.

The creepiest post-mortems are those where either the eyes are still open or the photographer paints them on later.  It’s pretty clear she’s dead, so what’s up with the open eyes and blank stare?

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, but this year I really haven’t had time to do anything fun.  I haven’t really had time to do anything fun all summer either, and now that winter is pretty much here I have to wonder where the time has gone.  I did get some time in the cougar pool and a couple of good road trips, so I should be satisfied with that.  However, I don’t see myself getting all hyped up for Christmas and all that as much as I would like to enjoy the season this year. 

I need to slow down, take a moment to simply be, and to repair the wiring, but I don’t see it happening any time soon.

Too bad I had to take down the cougar pool.

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assorted rants, cougardom, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy, political commentary

The Cougar Pool- Finally! and With a Name Like That…

Ah, the seasons of Central Ohio.  It seems that we have made the yearly sudden move from Monsoon Season into Stygian Heat without missing a beat.  For those unfamiliar with the seasons of Central Ohio, they go as follows:

Winter.  Cold. Windy.  Lots of precipitation- snow, rain, freezing rain, sleet- and it’s always dark. Lasts from about Halloween until mid-February.

Snowbooger Grey.  Cold, lots of rain, but not quite cold enough to freeze, leaving depressing grey snowboogers, discarded clothing items, assorted trash, dead Christmas trees and other detritus everywhere.  Windy. Dismal.  Still dark.  Lasts from mid-February until early April, but seems to last six months at least. The absolute worst season of the year.

Monsoon Season. Rain. Rain for days at a time without seeing a glint of sunlight.  Windy.  Sort of cold.  Lasts from early April until late May or early June.

Stygian Heat.  Hot, hot, humid and hot. Lots of thunderstorms and rain in between the hot, hot, hot, to raise the humidity and make you swear it’s even hotter than it is.  Imagine living in a greenhouse.  Lasts from early June to late August.

Fall Monsoon.  Just like the Monsoon Season of April-May, only there’s falling leaves to go with the rain, wind and cold. Lasts from early September to Halloween.

So we really have five distinct seasons here as opposed to the traditional four seasons.  The constant?  Precipitation, and lots of it.  It’s interesting to live in a (nominally) drained swamp.

I am glad that the successful installation of the Cougar Pool has coincided with the onslaught of Stygian Heat.  It was most enjoyable to float around on my floatie yesterday when it was 90+ with the usual 100% humidity.  I could have used some more interesting entertainment besides watching Jerry picking weeds, chugging Natties and listening to his whining about the bug spray.  If it’s safe for cats, it should work OK on him, unless he starts foaming at the mouth or licking his balls or something.  Then I might have to revisit the cat bug spray option, but those kinds of side effects may be mildly entertaining, and therefore an added advantage.  The cat bug spray was a lot cheaper and probably works better than the high dollar bug repellent anyway, but I’m going to have to get him the regular stuff because he won’t stop whining until I do. 

I did play hell getting the Cougar Pool set up, and I discovered that the only place level enough for it to work was up on the porch.  I should have done that initially instead of trying to set it up in the yard, but I figured Jerry would be more upset if I put it on the porch.  He didn’t seem to protest nearly as much as I thought he would.  I think it would be funny to see him actually get in it but I highly doubt he will try.  Yesterday he said the water was too cold.  I thought it was rather nice, especially considering how hot it was.  Now all I need is a DVD player out there- and maybe a Super Soaker just for fun.

I find it a tad bit hilarious that a guy with the last name Weiner (damned funny in its own regard, especially for a politician) is in trouble for tweeting pics of his Vienna sausage to some young college girl.  When I see this guy on TV, several things hit me about him, and none of them are good.

He’s a Democrat.  Strike one.  Hailing from the party of William J. (Oral Sex is Not Sex) Clinton and Teddy (I Didn’t Know She Couldn’t Swim) Kennedy does not inspire confidence in one’s integrity or one’s ability to refrain from behaving like a back alley tomcat.   However, lest I appear to be too forgiving of the other side of the aisle, I understand many Republicans have made poor behavioral choices in this arena as well.  The difference is that it seems for Republicans lewdness is a liability, whilst tomcattery seems a simple rite of passage- and a way to gain valuable name recognition- for Democrats. 

He’s a whiny little twit.  Strike two.  Would I really want to see his teeny-weeny-weenie?  If you’re going to tweet a pic, make it a good one.  If you’re going to send pics of a package, Ron Jeremy would be a better model than say, Mickey Mouse.

His efforts to molehill-ize his mountain are only adding fuel to the fire.  Dude, the more you protest your innocence, the guiltier (and nuttier) you look.

He has bad hair, a whiny voice, and an extremely huge nose- not necessarily detriments when considered as single elements, but when added to the overall “package” (pun intended) they add to the just plain blecch factor of this guy.

If I had a name like “Weiner” (granted, it’s hard to forget) maybe I’d either change it to something less, uh, giggle worthy, or consider becoming a stripper.  Although I can see where the name “Weiner” would be great as far as name recognition goes, it’s not exactly name recognition in a positive way.  For instance, if I were to name a feminine hygiene product “Pu**y Fresh” the name would be memorable, but not in a good way.  It would be sort of like naming your kid “Adolf” so he stands out in his class.  He will stand out, but not in a positive way.  

I do wonder, however, how many of Rep. Weiner’s constituents voted for him simply because of his name- either out of pity or just because it’s funny.  I can hear this conversation in someone’s head whilst in the voting booth:

“Check it out.  Dude’s name is ‘Weiner.'”

“I gotta vote for him…heh-heh…heh-heh…” (internal Beavis and Butthead laugh)

Or maybe some people just break out into mental song (to the tune of “I Wish I Were an Oscar Meyer Weiner”):

“Oh, I gotta go vote for the weirdo guy named ‘Weiner’, ’cause that is what I’d truly like to be…”

-or-

“Oh, I gotta go vote for the weirdo guy named ‘Weiner’, ’cause Weiner’s what I’d truly like to see…”

Now that song is going to be going through my head the rest of the day. I know I am dating myself, but I am sure there are those out there who remember the Oscar Meyer Weiner Song.  Not too many people wish themselves to be hot dogs these days, but the ’70’s and ’80’s were more innocent times.  When the air was dirty, and sex was clean, or at least safely confined to the privacy of the brothel or bedroom, that is.

And we wonder what’s happened to this country.

Must have been the same stoners who voted for Obama. 

I just thought of a great public service announcement:  “Don’t Toke and Vote!”

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assorted rants, cougardom, historical interest, misanthropy

Trucker Bombs, Overwork and Music Reviews

I should always remember to have my camera ready whilst driving down Morse Rd.  I find the most hilarious and out of place things. For those unfamiliar with the term “trucker bomb,” Urban Dictionary defines it as:

Trucker Bomb (n):
A plastic container that a truck driver pisses into inside the cab of his truck during daylight hours to be later pitched out usually on the side of the road. This practice has come about by the increasingly strict laws about indecent exposure. Years ago if a truck driver got caught pissing on the side of the road by the Po Po, he was given a ticket, end of story. But now if convicted of indecent exposure, you must register as a sexual predator where you live. Much safer to piss in a wide mouth bottle and a whole lot legally less complicated.
 
Billy Bob Big Rigger builds a trucker bomb every day on his run though Ohio. After dark when the bottle is full, out the window it goes to be later detonated by the poor dick that has to mow the shoulder.
 
Given that most truckers dispose of these while driving along on the Interstate (though I do also see them deposited regularly along the exit ramp from Northbound I-270 to Morse Rd.,) it was odd to see one at the intersection of Morse and Sunbury Rd.s, just catty corner from the UDF/Mobil aka: the Armed Robber’s Late Night Wet Dream.
 
I also found it a bit odd that in lieu of the typical 2 liter Mt. Dew bottle it was a Sobe bottle.  Either it was a New Age trucker, or perhaps a young punk out partying who just couldn’t wait to make it to the UDF crapper.
I have to envy dudes on this point.  If they absolutely can’t make it to the nearest comfort station, it is relatively easy for them to take a tinkle in an empty plastic bottle.  This does NOT happen for chicks.  I find it exceedingly difficult to cop a squat out in the woods (usually because you end up pissing all over your pants) and most likely impossible to go in a drinky cup or anything else that isn’t a toilet. If a woman has to make time on a road trip, I think Depends might be the only way to bypass the gas station toilet without making an unholy mess.
 
This morning (yes, Memorial Day) when I would normally be visiting my grandfather’s grave (he was a WWII Veteran)  and then taking a trip to whatever party or BBQ was going on, I was actually at work getting the month-end stuff finished.  While it did bother me that I wasn’t able to make that road trip today,  I don’t mind too much because a.) I’m getting paid for it, b.) I was done relatively early, and c.) I have tomorrow off when everyone else has to be at work.  I don’t mind working alone.  In many ways I prefer it because I get more done when nobody is pestering me. Even when I am duly compensated (and especially when I am duly compensated!) I have to be careful of getting caught in the cycle of overwork.  Working into oblivion can become an addiction for me.   It’s too easy for me to get lost in the task at hand and forget things like eating, sleeping, maintaining contact with family and friends, etc. and so on.
 
Even for the last two weeks that I’ve been more or less living at work, I have had some time for guilty pleasures.  I am a huge Journey fan from way, way back, and I have currently been enjoying their latest release, EclipseWorking alone is especially nice for cranking up tunes on the MP3 player while I work -it might seem like multitasking in a weird kind of way, but I get more done when I am listening to good music.

As much as I rave about Steve Perry in Spandex, that was then, and this is now.  I can’t go back to 1981, but I can appreciate something new if it’s good.  Eclipse is good, strikingly good, and that’s saying a lot from someone who really hasn’t kept in touch with the music scene since about 1985.  One of the things I like about Eclipse is that Neal Schon pretty much had his way and this is a beautiful thing.  Neal is probably one of the best, if not the best living rock guitarist today, and getting new stuff from him (even better yet, as part of Journey) is awesome. It warms my soul to know that not every new song coming out is boy-band tripe, cop-killer-sister-raping rap, or sappy-yucky songs about girls kissing on girls.
 
Arnel Pineda is not Steve Perry.  That’s OK.  Arnel has a great voice and a lot of fire and can stand on his own merit.  He has an extremely wide range that he uses well- which I enjoy (this is challenging vocal material- take it from a student of voice!)  I like listening to him.
Tomorrow’s adventure is getting the Cougar Pool up and running.  I have it, but now I have to figure out how to get it to stay up and hold the water in.
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