Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Dear Charlie:

If I weren't the Ice Queen, I'd be crying right now.

See, my Mom -- who's only been to my house once in the 5 years I've owned it -- called out of the blue last night and said, "Hey, me and the hubby are coming down tomorrow. We'll bring the steamer to get that wallpaper you hate off your dining room walls."

O.o

Color me not only surprised but panicked. See, I'm a clutter hog. My mom...is not.

So, after working from 7:30 AM to 7:30 PM, I came home and cleaned house until 10:30 PM. My house isn't dirty, but cluttered. Mostly, it was just going through old mail and throwing away the crap -- of which there was a lot -- and finding places for notebooks, hair ties, novels, a softball, CDs, etc. By the time I was done, this place looked SWEET.

Unfortunately, removing all the wallpaper while I was at work today took the entire work day, so after I drove home in the snowstorm the local weather had the audacity to call a "light dusting", I got here just in time to see a brand new mess of little wet wallpaper bits in the carpet and all over the kitchen, buckets and plastic drapes wadded here and there, and all the furniture I'd finally cleared a path through strewn all over hell and back.

*sigh*

Admittedly, they did have good reason for leaving it where they'd shoved it to get it out of the way. It's pointless to move it back until the walls are actually painted (because while the inimitable Biff -- the guy I bought the house from -- put up dry wall in the living room, he never made it into the dining room, so it's still plaster). They'd thought they would have time to paint before I got home (or if there hadn't been a, you know, snowstorm), but that just didn't work out. They have to drive back home, a good 2 hour trip.

So, while I'm eternally grateful that I didn't have to deal with the blotches of four-layer-thick patches under the current layer of wallpaper, I'm kinda staring around in shock at the hullaballoo.

I did, however, vacuum the carpet and sweep the kitchen floor and find places for some of the more in-the-way furniture, and I have my laptop up and running, so I shouldn't complain. Again, I don't think anyone can imagine what they went through trying to get that crap off the walls. I'd had enough after the living room, and at least there was dry wall under that. But in here? Hell no. I was content to wait an eternity.

Hopefully, they'll be able to finish up either Friday or Sunday, though. I'll be getting off work early Friday, so I should actually be able to help then. And I'll hopefully be back from the brother's wedding weekend (since I'm staying at Mom's anyway) Sunday. I think it'll all work out. And it'll look GREAT when it's done.

Ugh. The wallpaper was just...disgusting. Powder blue with that faux-striped "waterfall" design. Guh. Just...tasteless. I can't believe they actually sold that crap at some point -- apparently in 1985, if the notation from the inimitable Biff on the plaster by the light fixture is any indication.

That idiot.

>.<

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Sidebar:

Okay, now I'm pissed.

To even sign in today, I had to change over to the New Blogger. Where before I had a choice, I no longer had one.

Needless to say, I was pissed on general principles. Add in that a few friends LOST their blogs switching over, and I was not only pissed but worried as hell, too.

Luckily, nothing happened, but I do not like not having a choice in the matter. The only reason I'm not moving to another blog generator is because I have like two and a half years on this one. I'm not losing that just because Blogger's decided to go all "screw free will" on us.

But I am not pleased.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Dear Charlie:

I have contracted an important mission. Dangerous. Perhaps life-threatening. Definitely sanity-threatening.

I have to go shopping tomorrow.

Yes, the time has come due for me to sacrifice my sanity for my brother's wedding. I gave away or sold my last real dresses. I have skirts and slacks for work, of course, but nothing formal enough for what I presume the bride-to-be wants.

So now...I have to shop. I have to face that bastion of all commerce, The Mall. I must swallow my doubts and fears and venture into that dread fortress with very little chance of success and only the promise of more torment if I succeed.

Thus, I'm taking a friend. Poor Jody. I simply cannot face such tribulation alone.

Pray for me, my friends, my dearest ones. Pray for me.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Dear Charlie:

Yikes! Sorry! I've been busy. Though it's only Tuesday, I've already put in half a week at work. I'm tired.

Um...can't think of anything even remotely intelligent to say so...um...here! Look at this!



*happy sigh*

Doesn't that just make you feel better? I thought so, too. And now, it's way past my bedtime, so I'm hittin the sack. Hopefully, I'll have more lucid things to say later.

Woot!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Sidebar:

Well, I'm pretty much frozen in here and just got my power back, so I thought I'd drop a quick note to say...ya know...that.

Huh.

Okee-doke. I feel better. And in case I lose my power again, I just wanted people -- my beloved sister especially -- to know that I'm alive and kicking and working on that work in progress with the tricky ending. I rewrote the first chapter, and now I'm reading through, getting the feel for the word flow again. The last 20 pages or so have been pissing me off for over a month now. I've written at least a dozen different endings, but none of them are right yet.

I know exactly how it ends. I know exactly what needs to happen. But this is a genre I don't write often, and it's very, very difficult to not, I dunno, throw in something bizarre. Heh. I can't help it! I want to rebel and have something totally whacked out happen!

But no. It needs to end just so. And it will. Eventually. Heheh.

If, that is, my power holds out. *glares at freezing rain still falling merrily outside*

Oh, and go Chicago! *ducks thrown objects*

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Dear Charlie:

Still alive. Barely.

Okay, that's a little dramatic. I was perfectly alive yesterday. I just felt like the living dead. Today, a little better. But the fever that's never really gone away came back this afternoon with a vengeance and gave me the ol' carbon monoxide poisoning look for all my co-workers to comment on.

"You're looking a little glassy-eyed there."

I know.

"Your cheeks are really flushed. Are you sure you're feeling all right?"

No.

"Shouldn't you be home?"

No play, no pay.

Anyway, I'm feeling better again, as I usually do in the evening. Hopefully, I'll be back to my semblence of normal again soon. And since my beloved Chiefs are out of the running, I think I'm gonna have to start rooting for Indianapolis. Not because I particularly love the Colts, but because I think Payton Manning is a champ of a guy who shouldn't go out like Dan Marino -- with a record-breaking number of broken records in his pocket and no SuperBowl ring.

Hey. He was nice to a couple of blatant Chiefs fans in Hawaii in 2000 because he was happy to be there himself. God bless the ProBowl.

Go, Colts.

'Course, it might just make them insufferable next year....

Monday, January 08, 2007

Sidebar:

Well, I think I'll survive.

Survive from what, you ask? Why, from that quick and dirty stomach flu that everyone seems to have that I managed to miss until now. Yeah.

Saturday morning, I slapped a roast and some potatoes and carrots into the ol' crockpot. 8 hours or so later, I dug in. Tasty. An hour after that, I wondered if maybe I'd eaten too much because it sat on my stomach like a rock. By the time I went to bed, I began to wonder if something was wrong, and I was hoping to sleep whatever it was off.

I couldn't sleep. Couldn't find a comfortable position, and pretty soon, my stomach began to actually hurt. Soon after that, I began to feel like I'd puke. By 2:00 in the morning, I was thinking it might not be a bad idea.

Well, I got my half-ass wish and then some. I puked every twenty minutes or so until 6:00, when I finally called my dad and told him I might have food poisoning. Bless his heart, but Dad drove 2 hours to get here and take me to the emergency room. I kept puking until just before he got here, and I mostly only stopped puking because I quit trying to sip water after each degorging. by about 8:00, the puking part was over.

Then, the other disgusting part began. Joy.

Anyway, by the time I got to the hospital, my back and stomach hurt from all the retching, my temperature was down to 95, my heart rate was up around 112, and my blood pressure was all sorts of messed up -- the top number way up, the bottom number way down. I've never had a problem with high blood pressure, so that was a real problem with me. And I was shivering. Couldn't seem to get warm, even tucked inside a sweatshirt and my 30-below Chiefs parka.

They put me on IV fluids -- never had to have an IV before, but the nurse did great and it didn't hurt at all, though my whole arm went so cold from the influx that my hand turned blue, heheh -- and put some phenergan in to calm the nausea. A side effect was that, while I still shivered pretty much constantly, I did start to get sleepy. I did hear the doctor say that he wouldn't rule out stomach flu, even though I didn't have a temperature, because without a stool sample (which I didn't have the heart to provide), they likely wouldn't be able to pin down any bacterial source. That became important later.

But nicely enough, I did feel a little better after 2 bags of IV fluids, so Dad took me home and filled a prescription for me, then tucked me into bed because the phenergan and no sleep the night before had really knocked me out. By noon, I was asleep, and anyone who knows me knows how rare that is. I stayed in bed, though I heard a lot of what went on -- Dad left once and came back, then watched TV and washed dishes, for heaven's sake -- until about 5:30, when he came in and said he needed to go. I hadn't expected him to stay nearly as long, so I thanked him as profusely as I could and got out of bed to hug him before he left (and because I feared I'd never sleep that night if I didn't get up now). He said I felt hot.

Great. I told him it was probably just because I'd been asleep.

So, I watched TV for a little while. I started to feel a little feverish myself, so I hunted up my old thermometer and took my temperature. 102. Juuuuust great. The doctor was right after all. Stomach flu. Don't get me wrong; you can have a temperature, even a high one, with food poisoning. But I don't think so on this one. It was really too quick and violent, somehow. I dunno. Maybe there was something wrong with the roast. Either way, it's in the trash.

Luckily, though, the doctor had written an excuse from work note for 1-3 days, so I called up my supervisor and told her what was going on. She immediately said, "We don't want it! Stay home at least tomorrow and we'll see day by day after that." Bless her heart, too.

Anyway, fast forward. I feel better today. The temp's only 99.5 at the moment, and I can handle a low-grade temp easy. My stomach seems to have settled a little, so I'm gonna try some chicken soup shortly, since I haven't eaten in about 40 hours. Dad supplied a bunch of Gatorade, so I shouldn't have to worry about dehydrating again.

Oh, and my back doesn't hurt so bad, either. Woot!

So, yeah, I think I'll survive. I'll probably even go to work tomorrow because I'm a glutton for punishment like that. So long as my temp stays down, I can play like I don't have one at all, so all shall be well.

I hope no one else gets this, though, because 6 straight hours of puking sucks big hairy donkey balls.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Dear Charlie:

You know, it's ironic that, historically, the Chiefs have depended on defense to make a splash while our offense sputtered. History has come back to bite us in the ass.

See, for the last couple of years, the reverse was true. Our offense shone brightly while our defense just couldn't seem to get over the grievous loss of Derrick Thomas. Trent Green put up record numbers. We had two record-smashing running backs, never a common thing in KC. We scored a helluva lot of points.

But our defense couldn't seem to find its footing.

Then, there's today's play-off game. And history bit us in the ass. Our defense stepped up. Three interceptions. Two early goal-line stands. Sacking Payton Manning, whose offensive line protects him like the gold at Fort Knox.

Our defense kicked ass.

But after three quarters on the field while one of the most productive offenses in professional football couldn't even manage a first down, something's gotta give, and then came the touchdowns. We scored one, thank God. It wasn't a shut-out.

But Indianapolis's terrible, porous, wet-paper-towel defense just came out of nowhere and stomped us. Larry Johnson -- no one's idea of a shrinking violet -- didn't even make it to midfield with all his rushing yards lined up in a row. Trent Green was intercepted a couple (a few?) times and was restricted to short passes and just over 100 yards. Play action? What play action? We never stood a chance on offense, and I don't know how it happened.

Either Indianapolis's defense stood up or our offense stepped down. Or maybe a mix of both. All I know is that our play-off run was short, but not so sweet.

My poor, poor boys. Don't let it get you down. Learn from it, run with it. Make it your fight song for next year. No more one-and-done, boys.

Next year, I want you to take that football, and shove it down their throats. Because, as any good Chiefs fan knows, there's always next year.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Bizarro Sidebar:

Noooooo! Bill Cowher is...retiring!!

It can't be!

The man is a staple of football. I have long fancied that one day, one glorious day, I would see that throbbing, pulsing vein in his forehead just...let go...and shoot a veritable fountain of blood into the football sky. The man is an apoplexy in the waiting.

He can't retire!

You know, I remember that old Dr. Pepper commercial he did. You know, the one where The Bus cracks open the last Dr. Pepper in the ice chest, and Coach Cowher comes over and snatches it out of his hand, yelling that the last Dr. Pepper is his, it's always his, and no one takes the last Dr. Pepper because it's his. They break to the cheesy theme song of the time, and then they switch back to The Coach, who's ripping a set of pom-poms out of a cheerleader's hands and yelling, "And these are mine, too!"

Bwahahah! Best commercial ever!

I love football guys who can make fun of themselves. It's right up there with that Snickers commercial with the reviled Shannon Sharpe. You remember the one.

Sharpe: *flubs a beauty pass and stays down on the ground*
Staffer: *runs out on the field to check the injury* Hey, you okay?
Sharpe: *sits up and pouts* When the fans boo me, it makes me feel bad.
Staffer: *rolls eyes*
Voice-over Guy: Gonna be here a while? Better bring a Snickers!

*falls over laughing*

God, football commercials rule.

But anyway...Bill Cowher! What will the Pittsburgh sideline be without his potentially volcanic presence?? What will I stare at in sick fascination now that The Pulsating Vein of Doom is gone??

Please, God, no!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Dear Charlie:

I think I'm a little weirded out.

See, my brother is staying with me for a bit while he works a construction job just over the state line. He gets a metric ass-load of money to work out of state, and since he's staying with me, he can pocket that over and above the metric ass-load they're paying him per hour. He's making out like a bandit, but to his credit, he's sharing.

So, we go out to eat tonight at...you guessed it...my favorite place...the Japanese steak house. We're eating and admiring the hibachi chef's style and chowing on steak and scallops (though the adored brother had shrimp and scallops) when one of the waitresses -- not ours -- came over, crouched down between us, and whispered to me.

"I'm sorry. I hate to interrupt, but I just wanted to tell you that me and the girls have been talking about you. I saw you in here a little while back and noticed then, but I didn't want to say anything by myself."

Now, right about here, I start thinking something along the lines of What the shit? but I don't say anything. I'm pretty sure I was blushing, though. Wondering if maybe I have a "kick me" sign on my back...permanently. Something on my shoe? Something permanently imbedded in the back of my head?

Anyway: "But we were talking again tonight, and we just wanted to tell you that we think you have the most beautiful hair!"

*facepalm*

I nearly fell out of the chair. What the heck? It's not even really fixed -- just pulled up into a messy bun. I don't understand. But, I guess whatever floats their boat.

And my brother, angel that he is, just snickered at me and my blushing and stammering "thank you"s. Asshole. He also said, and I quote, "She's probably a ditch diver". So sensitive, Brother Mine. And so very PC.

But he did pay the check, so I can't complain too much.

Asshole.

Monday, January 01, 2007

My Dearest Charles:

Okay, first things first:

CHIEFS ARE IN THE PLAY-OFFS!

*dances until she passes out*

Okay, now that that's over....

So I had a great but busy weekend. I have slept in a child's bunk bed, in a cushy queen-sized bed with a foot-and-a-half-thick mattress, and on a couch this weekend. Didn't plan on the couch one, but we were having so much fun, I just couldn't leave.

First, I drove to my beloved sister's house Friday evening. That's where I crashed on my niece's bottom bunk. Twin-sized. Surprisingly, I was pretty darn comfortable, though the mattress was a little...firm. We had capuccino. It was very tasty. And for breakfast, I got to try her steel-cut oats, which were heavenly with some dried berries and honey. Great stuff, there.

Then, I rode with her -- poor Sis, but she hates to drive, especially in the city -- to Mom's house for "Christmas" Saturday. We had a good time with family, and my brother made the announcement that, just a few months after his divorce was final, he's engaged to another (lovely and seemingly un-crazy) woman and will be a Daddy again in July.

O.o

Moving on. Food was great. I ate too much of it. We opened presents, and I got exactly what I wanted -- some of Mom's infamous peanut brittle. Woot! Then I rode back with Sis, watched part of a movie, had some more capuccino and some Casey's pizza, then drove back to Mom's, where I stayed Saturday night in the thick-huge mattress. Slept like a log, which is weird because I usually don't sleep like a log on that mattress. Bizarro, but entirely welcome.

Then, I drove to my best friend's house in the old home town. Bless Kristi's heart, but she talked me into staying the night, though I hadn't planned to. We were just having so much fun! Her twins -- two years old, if you believe it! -- were adorable and imminently huggable, and once they went to bed, the fun really started. Yup, us old fogies didn't need any alcohol to live it up on a chilly, rainy New Year's Eve.

If the saying that whatever you do on New Year's is what you'll be doing the rest of the year is true, then I'm sitting pretty. I was watching kung fu movies, playing cards, laughing my butt off with friends, and delirious over the Chiefs getting back into the play-offs after how many years. Woot!

Now that's a good way to spend a whole year. Woot!

So, I conked out on the couch to grab a few hours' sleep and then hoofed it back home this morning. Just sat down for the first time since I got home. Whew!

Geeb is one tired little monkey. Oi.

But she's also a happy monkey. I had a great New Year's/Christmas. I saw most of my important people. I played cards and shot the shi...errr...talked with friends and family. I ate good food and hugged precious little ones and watched kung fu.

I mean, really. What more is there to life?

Oh! I know! The Chiefs are in the play-offs! The Chiefs are in the play-offs! Woooot!