Tuesday, June 29, 2004

randomly craptastic...um...random crap

To the dude in the bright orange truck with the orange sticker on the back that reads, "You Got NUTHIN"...gimme a call. I'll trade you my Olds for your Toyota. I'm serious.

To the dude in the Chevy with the sticker on the back that reads, "CUTLASS" in the font oft preferred by Hispanic text-tattoo enthusiasts and the chain-link license plate holder...um, no. Yeah, I think I'm going to have to go with "no" on that one.

This is what my blog has been reduced to - observations about vehicles I see every day on my commute. I feel so ashamed. About what the blog has become, that is - not about that whole saving lives thing. Have I mentioned that I save lives every day? Everything I do is but a cog in the machinery that is saving lives. And what is it you do again? Ah, yes, that's right...suckah.

I can't believe I just said that - I've always hated when people defined themselves by their job. It was particularly tough when I was at home with the kids. You'd get that dreaded, "And what do you do?" line. Stock answer was, "As little as possible" because I'm so painfully clever like that. But inside I was thinking, "You're such an ass - so you're senior partner at Dewey, Cheatem and Howe? Bully for you - how do you sleep at night? Those big piles of money can't be particularly comfortable." But now I'm all like, "Hey, guess what I do all day? I bet it's better than what you do all day, I'll tell you that much for free."

I'm only saying this because I'm on the upswing to a mania - ask me again in a few weeks what I do and I'll probably affect my best Robert Smith accent and say something like, "I'm wasting my time trying to fight a problem that will never be solved. Sigh, sigh, maudlin, maudlin." Yes, I will probably say the words "sigh" and "maudlin" out-loud. That's how racked I get.

The upshot is that we're going into North Korea. Makes me want to say "woot" except substitute the letter O for a zero. I mean, come on - that's pretty good, right? Lemme hear a shout-out for North Korea!

I would make a joke about crickets chirping but that wouldn't be particularly funny, seeing as how in North Korea there are no crickets. Because they've all been eaten. By starving, dying people. That I'm feeding! w00t!

We're also going into Liberia and Zimbabwe with just a butt-load of stuff and will hopefully be in Honduras by the end of the month.

And how was your day? (Go ahead and kick me, that's fine. I get that a lot.)

One weird thing is this shift in me...see, once upon a time I was quite religious. It took a good, old-fashioned raping by a member of the congregation to give me pause on that score, but I still know a lot about the bible and Christianity as a whole. I found myself in the position today where I'd written this in a letter without even thinking twice:
It was so nice to speak with you the other day regarding your good works with the prison fellowship program. The Lord taught us in Matthew 25 that whatsoever we do to the least of His brethren, so shall we do onto Him."

Totally pulled that one out of my butt, I did. Had to double-check at Bible.com to make sure I had the right chapter, and I did. cha-ching

I think one of the reasons I'm so fixated on the job is because I've never brought it to the old blog...I feel like I'm keeping my two worlds separate, but once I own it publicly on here it'll lose some of the mystique, and I'll hopefully be able to get over myself. But I don't want to show everyone until I finish up the new web site. Which is what I actually came back here to do, but didn't. Because I'm a phenomenal slacker that's never done any good to no one no how...wow, the depression came on quick, dinnit?

Sigh. Maudlin. Sigh. Yes, two sighs.

I'll try to think of something funny this week, I promise. You come here expecting to get your money's worth and here I am constantly ripping you off.


Redux: Why yes, I am buried rather far up my own bum...why do you mention it? ()

Thursday, June 24, 2004

what i learned on my summer vacation, by pickle juice

The short answer is I've learned that falling in love at first sight can be the most heart-wrenching thing to ever happen to a person.

That's all, really.

Why yes, I am buried rather far up my own bum...why do you mention it? ()

Saturday, June 19, 2004

this post is the equivilent of the weekend phone call to your parents - you do call your parents, right? your folks miss you. call them.

Says she who hasn't spoken to her parents in who knows how long.

Anyway, this isn't really a bulleted list with no real point (and since it isn't, I needn't thrice remind you of the patent pending status...by the way, ten points to anyone who gets the triple "patent pending" reference) but it probably should be, because you won't find you no flow round here today.

So the other day I was driving to work and I really, really wanted to be an adult and listen to the news while drinking coffee. Really, I tried. But I found myself in the unique position of wearing a black pocket t-shirt and bowling shoes and looking really cute with it, so something else inside took over. I cranked up some Scissor Sisters and drank papaya juice and dangled my arm out of the window. I felt bad ass. I think that's the secret to avoiding a mid-life crisis...just allow yourself to be a little bit bad ass every single day.

Of course, there's no way to feel very bad ass when you find yourself in bowling shoes, a black pocket t-shirt and driving your boss's Cadillac because your own kickin' SUV died in the parking lot at work. Then you feel stupid. Then people will laugh at you. I felt all aging-hipster and that's just no kind of good.

I told Ass Crack Man who towed me that for what he charged for the tow I could have fed a starving child for almost an entire year. He was unimpressed. He was also untipped. He remains a bastard.

I told the mechanic that my problem was, at most, a minor electrical thing. I'd suspected it, and my ex (mechanic) confirmed it to Andy. I told him this. He knew. So when he came back with a quote of over a grand I flipped my lid. Sucker made me cry, and I don't like that. I mean, I cried on the phone when I was talking to him. I wasn't crying in a, "Oh, Mr. Hairy Legs Man, I am but a small, weak woman and I am hoping to appeal to your sense of chivalry so that you'll reduce the price of the work!" I was like, "I am on the brink of a major-league nervous breakdown, and this is going to be the straw that breaks the camel's back, and I can't help it." He seemed unmoved.

Until I called back again and made not-so-thinly-veiled threats regarding how angry my brutish husband gets when anyone makes his "baby doll" cry. (Confidentially, he's never called me baby doll. Ten points for that one, too.) The truth shall out, as they say, and at the end of it all the final diagnostic was the replacement of one ignition switch and a bit of bad wires for the princely sum of about a hundred bucks.

Boss gave me a ride to the garage and promptly berated said mechanic for making me cry. I'm pretty sure the mechanic thought he was my husband, which was kind of funny. Mechanic shows me this little trick to keeping the truck going and says that he'll cut the labor in half when I want to get the switch installed - it wasn't even a major thing at this point. I thank him and drive off.

I notice my brakes are no longer squeaking nor do they require fifty pounds of pressure before they engage. Could it be...why, yes, I think he did. I think he installed new brakes without charging me. I drove home just as bad ass as I'd driven in the day before.

So I guess this post did come full circle.

Rock star.

I have a sneaking suspicion that I look most like K.D. Lang, though, but I'm going to ignore that little nugget of fear for the time being. ()

Sunday, June 13, 2004

call me seducy lucy

It's a fact that there's very little about me that's subtle. This is especially true about my flirting - in the past I've been known to say things like, "Right - show of hands, now. Who wants me to take off my shirt?" I've used the phrase "baloney pony" in all seriousness, and have even commanded people to touch my butt. I just don't know how to flirt.

Now, this isn't such a bad thing, seeing as how I'm married, but there are varying levels of flirtation that go on. There's the straight-out, "I am very interested in you" kind of thing, but there's also a very minor level that's more of a, "I acknowledge that I am your preferred gender so if I'm a little extra cute with you, maybe you will do things for me." I call it "collecting resources", and it's pretty common in the work place. It's nothing bad; it's like laughing at the IT guy's dumb joke because you want him to consider your problems a priority. It's complimenting the mail room guy's shirt so he won't complain when you have a really huge mailing to go out. That kind of thing.

My job often involves really kick-ass stuff like driving fork lifts. It also involves really crappy stuff, like loading semi trucks. So I have to go around, collecting resources, so I don't get stuck doing everything.

So I turn on the old charm and get this guy in to help with my heavy lifting. At one point he was being flirty-not-flirty with me because I couldn't reach something. He made a move to put his hands under my arms to lift me up. In general, I really, really do not like being touched so I snapped, "Don't do that - I'm ticklish!" I quickly realized that my little freak-out could cost me so I tried to recover by saying, "Yeah, I mean, I'm ticklish, but not in a cute way. I snort snot and pee a little."

Oooh, good recovery! Way to get the old flirtation back on track! But it gets worse.

I realized my gaffe and, in order to bring our relationship back on the "you think I'm cute so you'll do things for me without complaint" track I thought I'd try to impress him. "Hey, watch this!" I said, as I jumped up to hit the top of the door frame.

Hey. Watch this. Jump, slap.

Whooeee, I am smooth.

So yeah, it looks like I'm back to loading trucks by myself again.

It wouldn't be so bad if my idiocy were limited to my real-life experiences but I'm also a huge dork in my dreams, too. I dreamed that I met the lead singer of Sisters of Mercy except he was super hot. I was trying to impress him so I said, "Hey, I named my couch after you!" He said, "You named your couch Eldritch?" I said, "No, I named it Sydney. It's a girl couch."


You know, though - dude should have been impressed when I managed to hit the door jamb, because I'm really short and was wearing bowling shoes. I guess some people just cannot be impressed. ()

Friday, June 11, 2004

i can bring peace to the middle east - ask me how!

I can't believe no one's thought of this before, seeing as how we all have dads.

Hear me out. Okay, we get Sharon and Arafat together...somehow. I dunno - that's not the brilliant part I came up with. Get, like, a mutual friend to invite them both to the same restaurant under false pretenses and sit them together or something. They can go through that whole, "I wouldn't have come if I knew that he was coming!" thing while you think up a way to get them both into your basement.

Just hang on - my plan gets better.

So you get them both into your basement, with each of them sulking at being duped, and you lead them to your fuse box. Your properly labeled fuse box. Complete with a zone diagram of the house.

Because if there's one thing that all old dudes love, it's a properly labeled fuse box. If you have the floor plan of the house taped to the wall showing which bits are powered by each fuse...well, you've just won yourself a friend for life, my dear.

An hour and a half. Ninety minutes. Ninety freaking minutes I spent looking at the fuse box at work. "Now, here is Zone 2A. That's the thirty square foot area at the top of the stairs. See over here? This symbol indicates there's a power outlet. This symbol indicates an overhead light bulb. And this symbol over here indicates an overhead light bulb with a power outlet on the side! Isn't it brilliant?"

The region with the hash marks indicates flourescent lights, so it's not worth turning them off and on all day - just leave them on, even if we don't go into that section of the warehouse. The area with diagonal lines through it is quite obviously indicitave of heavy-duty ultra-wattage bulbs, so you're better off stumbling through the dark to flip on the table lamp. The area with the tartan is where skylights should be installed when the money comes in, and if there's a checkerboard pattern...well, you'd just better not enter that zone when Mars is rising, I'll tell you that much for free!

Ninety minutes of that.

Now, I suffer old men gladly, as my father is the same way. That's not a huge issue. The problem came in when an equally-elderly visitor came in and Boss Man said, "Let me show you around - I just want to flip some of these switches." The other elderly guy let out a low whistle and said, "That's quite the system you have there!"

Two hours. Two hours they spent inspecting the box and the layout, and then walking through our bajillion-square-foot warehouse to verify that the labels and layout were correct.

Then he left.

I don't know from whence this elderly visitor came, nor do I know his intended business with Boss Man. Perhaps his sole ambition rested in seeing what kind of fuse box system Boss Man had in play, kind of like taking a sneak peek at your neighbor's phone bill for evidence of 900-numbers.

Regardless, today has taught me a valuable lesson - a fuse box will eliminate thoughts of anything else that you may have going on in your life.

And that, my friends, is the secret to peace in the middle east.

You heard it here first.

I wonder what would have happened had they stumbled onto a badly labeled fuse box...they should see mine. I haven't updated it from the previous owner's notes, so it says things like, "Grandma's old room" and "The room Buddy puked in". That's enough to cause a geriatric implosion right there. ()

Thursday, June 10, 2004

it's kinda like a venn diagram except instead of a concentric nucleus we have a bunch of oblong thoughts raft with ellipses...

...or, "Monchicis are invading my life, yo."

Which ever title you prefer is the one you should run with, methinks.

Okay, so I was going to post this the other day - gotta love the "draft" feature on Blogger. I swear, over two-thirds of my content is still in "draft" mode. Anyway, I was going to post this...the only really relevant part is in bold, but suffer me gladly, bitches:

So I've been up since five because Granny Infectious gave me her cold ("I thought it was hayfever but it turns out I'm ill, hack hack hack!") and I've been reading Greg's archives. I've only ever read three blogs in their entirety (Mike, Alfie and Greg) but if you have stalkerish tendencies like I do, those three come highly recommended.

Anyway, Greg is always making these old pop-culture references (despite constantly saying he's going to stop) and every now and again he'll say something that kind of tickles something in my memory that I can't quite recall. Then when I do remember it, it opens up this whole flood of childhood memories and general weird stuff that my child's mind would have never connected. Like when I used to hang out at my best friend Erica's house in kindergarden and her dad would be sitting in his chair toking on a bong while watching Super Dave. It didn't seem weird to me until I got a little older and realized that I probably spent the first ten years of my life with a contact high.

So Greg made a passing reference to "Fargo North, Decoder". I remembered The Electric Company ("the electric company-ee-ee!") but not much of the details. Then suddenly I remembered that Morgan Freeman was on it, and Irene Cara ("Coco" from "Fame"), and Rita Moreno ("Sister Peter Marie" in "Oz"...incidentally, she was also the voice of Carmen Sandiego, another kick-ass show), Todd Graff ("Skip" in "Death to Smoochy"...shaddup), and just a ton of others. Then I started thinking about "3-2-1 Contact!" and "Monchichi" and "Encyclopedia" and "Mr. Wizard's World" and "Fraggle Rock" and man, oh man, I am rich with television!

After all of that calmed down I started thinking about "Fargo North, Decoder" again. Surely the dude has a bit of a fan base, right? Definitely. So I'm clicking around and I see that not only was Skip Hinnant the veritable "Fargo North, Decoder" on a kids' program, but he was also the voice of - are you ready for this? - Fritz the Cat. I am not kidding.

Okay, so there's that thing. Then Charlie (another one whose archives I've stalked - in fact, Charlie may not remember this but he once threatened to put the smack-down on Mike because I was supposed to be Charlie's groupie. I suggested that they steal cars and race on Dead Man's Curve for me, and that was pretty much the last time I heard from Charlie.) posts something about the "Monchici" song and how it gets stuck in your head. I posted this - yes, I'm being all self-referencing here, but deal. Again, bitches, yo:

Every single day when I turn on the shower, the combination of the water hissing through the pipes and the shower head sputtering sounds exactly like the beginning of "Purple People Eater". So every day in the shower I bust out with, in my best Elvis voice, "Well I-ah saw this thing coming out of the sky - it had-ah one long horn with one big eye...." I even sing the high-pitched girlie bits where they go, "One EYE?!?"

I'm pretty sure I remember all of the words accurately, despite not having heard it in about twenty years and never being gruesome enough to google it.

I get the Monchici song stuck in my head, too, but I think I'm making up words, because right after the "monchici" part I say, "They came from outer space. They gonna slap you in the face."

Ah, I'm so funny. I should have a blog.

So there's Monchici reference number two.

Then I was talking to Mike about soup and it reminded me of...I don't know, something or other. But that something or other reminded me that I have a lot of blogs in "draft" mode, which in turn brought me to...you guessed it - the Monchicis.

Specifically I had a post in the works whereby I posted something about who each team of the Fab Five look like. I don't know - it was topical and probably funny at the time, but I couldn't quite pull it together so I left it alone. But the gist of it was this:

Carson vs. Scarecrow
Ted vs. Skoda
Kyan vs. Jose Eber
Jai vs. Monchichi

Kinda scary, huh?

Oh, I remember why I didn't do the Fab Five post - because I couldn't besmirch Thom. Because Thom's da bomb, yo.

Still. The Monchichi stuff's gotta stop.

They're so cute and fuzzy - why would they want to slap us in the face, anyway? ()

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

aw man, i just spit diet coke everywhere

Filed under "dumb-ass things that make me laugh" is this little gem:

I was sitting in a meeting with my boss and Other Dude. Very almost-but-not-quite-suit-worthy-executive-type meeting. Which, of course, means my boss (seventy-five years old) is talking about every single personal anecdote he can summon that has absolutely nothing to do with what the meeting is about. He was talking about this video they took in Kenya and said this:

Man, I just looked awful. I looked old. The lighting was so bad that all the black people looked orange. But that part was so awesome.

Dude, seriously, my nose is still burning from shooting soda through my nostrils.

Orange black people. Awesome.

Ah, some days I just love this guy.

I've really got to get him in the habit of saying "dude". Because that's even funnier. ()

Saturday, June 05, 2004

so why don't you bitches think i'm hot?

So I found this little tool via Gerard where you upload your photo to see what celebrities have the same facial dimensions as you do. My results were pretty good, despite the fact that I am not, as you might say, "hot". Observe:

Stephanie Seymore

Sandra Bullock

Yasmeen Ghauri

Not a Janeane Garofolo to be seen. No Meg Mullaly without makeup. These three beauties are what my face could be like if I, ya know, tried. I guess. Maybe not.

I don't know, actually, if I should feel really hot-ified or horribly pissed off at my lot in life.

Andy came back as a cross between Steve Martin and Brad Pitt. I'm not sure how I feel about that, either.

I'm all confused now. I think I'll add to it by claiming to be a man and seeing whom I would most resemble.

At least the Stephanie Seymore thing is pretty cool, seeing as how she was married to Axl Rose. That bitch.

What am I talking about? Oh, yeah, about how woefully un-hot I'm feeling at this moment.

Sucks to be me-iously,


My life would be so much better if I would inject my face with dangerous diseases. Gah, I'm so stupid! ()

everybody's got a damn book deal except me

Because I am incredibly lazy and a boring old hack, I'm going to go ahead and throw another Bulleted List With No Real Point (as always, patent pending, patent pending patent pending). This time, though, I'll put a little more effort into the thing than last time, seeing as how each post needs to last for about a week or so.

  • First order of business...our resident Coronary-In-Waiting, aka Steve of Ho Go Nice (I think it's a slang term) has finally gotten his cookbook published, titled, "Eat What You Want and Die Like A Man".

    Catchy, innit?

    Anyone who has read Steve at all knows that his recipes are enough to induce a heart attack simply by consuming the words. Wait, do I mean his recipes or his politics? Either way - six in one hand, yadda yadda yadda.

    So buy the damn book and gain a few pounds. It's for a worthy cause, people. He has two parrots to support. PARROTS! (Actually, Steve is a guy who can order a piano online at the drop of a hat whenever he feels like - what's he up to now, about six of them? - but don't hate him for his money. There are many, many other legitimate reasons to hate the guy. I think I'll list them all and publish my own damn book.)

  • Speaking of gaining weight, Andy's getting to be a chubber 'round the old waistline. By "chubber" I mean he may have broken the 140 pounds mark. I don't know how happy I am about this...on the one hand I'm very hooray about being so bad-ass that my cooking is causing him to gain weight where his mother and ex-wife failed (swish) but on the other hand...well, it's chub, innit? It's a well-known fact that my preferred body type is coke-head skinny. Not crack-head or meth-head, mind. Coke-head. Being able to tell the difference between the three is like being able to tell the difference between a Norwegian, Swedish and Finnish accent. It's tough, but once you get it you can spot it forever. I can even tell which -head skinny someone is through their clothes. So naturally I'm worried about Andy.

    When I was a girl I didn't have wallpaper in my room. I had posters. Floor to ceiling posters...all of Axl Rose. This was his coke-head skinny phase. When he cleaned up his act (circa "You Could Be Mine") I was of two minds. On the one hand, I knew he wasn't likely to overdose anymore. On the other hand, he looked so damn...dare I say it?...healthy. shudder It's never been the same. Thank jeebus that Iggy Pop still drugs out or else I'd be lost.

  • I drive a big-ass SUV (and I'm incredibly happy with it except when I have to gas the thing up) but I have, shall we say, some fairly liberal-leaning tendencies. I don't wet the bed over it anymore, but I'm still rather bleeding-heart. So to compensate for driving an SUV I think I'm going to slap on a bumper sticker that says, "My other car is powered by hemp-flavored tofu." That should cut the sting a bit, dontcha think?

  • A while ago I was in severe PMS mode and cried at the words, "There are no new messages on the server". I cried because no one loves me. Cried and cried and cried. Then I saw a whole slew of emails that I hadn't replied to yet and thought, "Ah, look! Somebody does love me!" I was then so filled with satisfaction that I promptly walked away from the computer rather than reply to the people who have emailed me. I cannot claim to understand the mysteries of the PMS-stricken.

    Email disappoints me anyway, because all of the really good subject lines are spam. My email pulls down and I read the subject lines in anticipation. "Can't wait to read that one...oooh, that one sounds like it'll be good..." Invariably, at the conclusion of the email being pulled, all of the good subject lines are flagged as spam and junked into the trash. But then I click over to the trash to make sure, like a child shaking an obviously empty box at Christmas, looking for one last shred of gift. "Natalie wallow paralinguistic denouement!" one seemed to scream. "Natalie, lunatic dilettantes behind door number 8773!" cried another. But, alas, they were all ads for VI. AG. RA. That makes me cry even without the PMS.

  • And Viagra - I mean, come on. It's getting a little out of hand. Do you remember when women used to use the line, "Don't worry, it happens to everyone once in a while"? We don't have that line anymore! And it was a really, really good line, because you could then seguay into all sorts of thinly-veiled, passive-aggressive, snidey commentary on their manhood. What happens now? The guy is giving it, "Hey, it's no big deal because it happens all the time - I know, because I've seen the commercials. Those guys are all just like me!"

    No, they're not. They're all wussy, wussy men who have problems with their pee-pee. A real man doesn't need Viagra.

    Ooh, it's fun to say this stuff.

    Oh, and one last thing about Viagra - what's with the latest ad campaign? The one where all of the guys are running around the neighborhood, cheering and high-fiving because every seventh prescription of Viagra is free? How much less responsibility do these guys want? Listen up, guys - first, you're turning over the control of your erections to a little pill. The pill is what does it for you. Now you're turning over the payment for the pill to the company. You have now relinquished any and all control or credit for that erection. You are now a meat puppet. Congratulations - I pity your wives.

  • Man, it was really, really fun to write that stuff.

  • This post was way wordier than I'd hoped. I'm trying to work on that. I'm even getting criticized at work for using too many words in my marketing campaigns. "Natalie, no one reads. No one! Ever!" So if you've made it to the end of this, I salute you. I also say to you that you should have spread it out in little chunks, because this post will probably have to last you another week. If you miss me as the days go by, feel free to email me. I won't ignore you, I promise.



I was either going to post this boring-ass thing or a list of some of the funnier lines I've used in the past. Again, reference the first line of this post - the list o' funnies may be in the cards yet. ()