Friday, January 30, 2009

Things that Twist My Big Mamas

Music: Cat Stevens Where do the Children Play

Destination: A hotel in Seattle Center. A view of the Space Needle (sorta) and two very big ugly cranes blocking the view.

Wine: Sterling Central Coast Chardonnay.

Book: The Senator's Wife by Sue Miller (love it!) and They Told Me There Would be Cake (not sure, barely started it, but i wish i came up with that title.)

Exercise: I pushed a shopping cart around Safeway for about 45 minutes trying to find the right cheese and pate for our little excursion tonight. I'm countin' it as exercise.
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Here's what's on my mind lately. It's totally random. I have no idea what i am getting ready to type, but Kylee's rant on her own blog about how no one fills up the Brita got me thinking. (Kylee, your blog post is brilliant!)

1. I eat Yoplait yogurt nearly every morning and i hate when i pop off that foil top and the next thing i know i have Mixed Berry Fruit all over the front of my dry clean only blouse.
2. I don't know why it has happened more than once either, because usually i am a very quick learner. And it makes me so mad to make the same mistake twice.
3. What am i saying?.... I am a woman who was divorced twice by the time I was 35 years old.
4. I think i am too stupid or have some retention disorder in my brain that makes it most difficult to keep up with Lost on ABC. So yeah, Lost, with all it's millions of characters and thousand different plots is finally starting to piss me off. I liked it best when it was just Jack and Sawyer, Locke, Michael and Kate and the kid Walt? (i forget his name. ) And actually I really sorta kind of hate Kate.)
5. Someone wrote a Letter to the Editor in my local newspaper today defending Rush Limbaugh because Leonard Pitts took issue with Rush saying he hopes Obama fails. It made me want to take my dirty Big Mamas off and twist them around the letter writer's neck. A totally different Letter to the Editor was something very wholesome-y and positive (no wonder i cannot remember what the subject was, i just remember it was nice) was signed "Donna Reed".
6. It got me thinking. How old are the editors of my local newspaper anyway? And dammit, when did i get older than my newspaper editor, my doctor, my legislator anyway?
7. I hate it when people do not RSVP.
8. I hate it even more when they DO RSVP and then they don't show up.
9. What the F happened to manners anyway? I go back to my very first blog post. People don't even say thank you that often anymore.
9. I'm starting to think that many Baby Boomers make pretty bad parents.
10. My kids... those ones i didn't have... My kids, thank me every day for making that choice NOT to be a parent. I would have been terrible. I would probably have raised little Charlie Mansons, little kids just striving for control.
11. American Idol. Yeah i'm watching. But only for the Simon Factor. (pearl, you would love Simon as much as i do i believe. I wish you watched!) Anyway .... my point is this: More of us should be like Simon! Really. The world is too full of people who are too careful. Too polite. Too afraid of confrontation. Too lacking in honesty. To willing to sacrifice their own identify and values out of fear of what others may think. And people with a velocity for verbosity (like myself) often spend exhaustive time worrying how we offend people who are Non-Simons. (If i traveled in a world of Simons I would be a very popular person.)

Ok, so what twists your Big Mamas or thong or Jockey underpants?

I was trying to post a photo tonight of the Seattle Space Needle with the ugly cranes, but Brian's laptop doesn't seem to want to support my memory card so maybe later. (I came back to edit using eque's idea of a Big Mama underpants photo. These ARE really my favorite comfortable Big Mamas.)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

"we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord."

Music playing: U2's Beautiful Day
What I am drinking: Lipton diet green tea
Mood: jubilant, but tired
Exercise: ran at lunch
This is a photo of my office blackboard. I wrote part of Obama's speech on it.

I am dead tired, but i couldn't leave up that Bush letter any longer. (Even the White House's web page has been changed for over 24 hours!) I started with my office pals at 8 in the morning watching the Inauguration live over brunch and mimosas. (The speech did not make me cry & there wasn't that Kennedy or Roosevelt soundbite in it, but i loved it all the same.)
Some of my favorite moments of the inauguration ceremony:
1. Malia shooting video of the event. Oh....those girls!
2. The slip up on the oath.
3. Aretha & Yoyo Ma
4. The faces in the crowds
5. Rick Warren & Reverend Lowery

And My husband's band, The Disclaimers, played for the Inauguration celebration at the Swiss Tavern last night. It was crowded, hot and loud and even though i tend to be claustrophobic and hate crowds, i felt great. Obama's speech was replayed on the big screen behind the stage and you would have thought he was there in person! I was there for 7 hours taking photos and video of the night. (I shot without flash in in the dark by bumping the ISO on my new D-90 Nikon, and many came out great, even after 4 snowcap microbrews) This shot of Brian shows the video on his forehead.

Some of my favorite moments from The Swiss last night:
1. When they replayed Reverend Lowery's speech, the whole crowd shouted out Amen! every time he did.
2. I have this incredibly funny video of an "overdancer". It's this woman wearing a fancy dress and i swear to you when i say she dances like Elaine on Seinfeld. It's hysterical and i'm saving it forever.
3. I ran into this guy and we both did a doubletake. He had such a great exuberant smile. Because he was African American i was afraid he would think i was doing that stupid thing white people do, so I asked him first, "do i look familiar to you"? because I was certain I knew him from somewhere. And he smiled widely and said "yes"! It was so loud we couldn't talk but later he asked me to dance and when the song was over we figured it out: we had both been Obama delegates at the legislative caucus at the high school.
4. (He also told me that i was a good dancer which made me feel good.)
5. Our best friends, Julie and Keith came to see Brian play. (I can always count on these two to support us.)
6. And it was truly cool to see my husband up there playing the drums.
7. I got to say "I'm with the band!" (I've always wanted to do that.)

What are some of your favorite moments yesterday? (Or parts of Obama's speech.)

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Bye Bye Bush. And believe it or not....Thank you!

Please write your own letters here!


Dear (Ex) President Bush,
It has been years since I have been so angry with you and your administration (even though I still had reasons for being so). Aside from the Iraq war, I especially hated how you kept Americans divided. I was most pissed off when my patriotism was in doubt by other Americans every time i disagreed with you. There were so many many things that infuriated me that I exhausted even myself by how much I was keeping track. (I was even keeping a scrapbook and filled it up much too quickly. )

Sometime before your second term I remember saying to my husband, (as I’m sure many people like me were saying): “What our country really needs right now is a Bobby Kennedy or a Martin Luther King Jr.” But what did the Democrats do instead? . . . They made John Kerry the nominee.

Even as I knew that Kerry was so far from a Bobby or MLK Jr., I stupidly believed through hard work (and i did work hard) that we could beat you because John Kerry wasn't YOU. But I was wrong. And so I sunk into a lethargy that immobilized me. I no longer had the energy to hate your administration. (And I quit working on my scrapbook. Besides, I had already run out of pages.)

This all reminds me so much of my second ex-marriage. (Thankfully that lasted only 3 years and not 8!) My ex used to lie often and come home whenever he felt like it (drug addiction does that to a person). It was a voilatile & turbulent marriage, (much like our country during your presidency). One night my ex did not come home (not the first night either) and i realized it no longer mattered to me if he did. I surprised myself by not even being mad. I had been letting my marriage for so long turn me into a person i didn't recognize or even like anymore and I was tired. The anger that had consumed me for so long was no longer there. And I no longer cared to hang on to it (or the man) and on that night I knew there were better days ahead. (And I filed for divorce the next day.)

It was sometimes around Katrina that i started feeling the same way about you and your White House administration. I had reached a point and simply didn't care about being mad anymore because there were so many things by then, how could it end? So I just had to let it go. I had not been proud of the way I was coming off as so strident and righteous in how I talked about politics those days. And so, as it was with my ex-husband, i chose to give it up and to move towards something more positive.

Who would have thought Barack Obama would come into the picture so soon? I didn't start out thinking he was all that (you can ask my friends, I was looking towards Russ Feingold before him!) but my friend Keith gave me a copy of Audacity of Hope and Obama sounded so much like Howard Dean (only better and without the scream) and I started paying attention. When he gave that speech in Feb. 2007 announcing his candidacy I cried and sent my first check. Obama made me want to get back to work. He gave back my hope for a better America. I do truly believe he can pull this country together. Americans are already more invested in our country's future. (It's a start.) Whether he will be a Bobby Kennedy or a MLK Jr. , only time will tell.

I used to say that your biggest lie was when you said early on that you were a uniter, not a divider. But now I think you were right. And I want to thank you. Because of what you have done, you really have united us in a way that no other president has. Conservatives and liberals want the same thing - a new direction. We really want to get along better with one another. And most everyone i talk to really wants Obama to succeed, even those who didn't vote for him.

I am not sure without your failures that it would have been possible to elect Obama. I believe had you only moderately failed, that we may be swearing in Hillary on Tuesday instead. But Obama presented us with a picture of a different country from the one we live in today. And because of you more Americans voted for that change... Because of you.

So thank you, President Bush. Thank you for beating John Kerry in 2004 and thank you for helping us elect a better man. And I know you are a religious man with God's ear, so please pray for Barack Obama and our country. He has so much to fix. And he needs all of our prayers.


jojo cucina cucina

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Fly-Tying Wine Musings. Totally Random.

MENU OF THE DAYMusic: Amy Winehouse's "Rehab"Beverage: This really good Washington red with a migrant worker on the label.
Mood: A tiny bit enebriated. (OK. more than a tiny bit.)Exercise: I have run for three days in a row during my lunch hour this week, which means i have run 5 days in a row.Book: That DAMN Edgar Sawtelle book again. ( I cannot wait for it to be over!)
What I am cooking: Cook's Illustrated Beef Stroganoff
Recent iTunes purchase: "Stick to the Shallows" by Tea Leaf Green
YouTube of The Week: (I'm not gonna tell y'all what it is. You have to look!'s only about 2 minutes.)
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1. Tonight our friend Keith is over for fly-tying & i cooked. (This photo is me ...tonight .)
2. I watched American Idol yesterday. I really do not want to be sucked in unless y'all are dying for it. So i think i might pass on blogging about it until it gets close to the end. (I DO however like the new judge.) I took hand written notes on only four people yesterday. The gal in the bikini who auditioned who made it through is the one i will LOVE to hate. I did like the blind dude at the end of the show. (And the oil rigger guy too.)
3. I forget the 4th person, so i'm sure whoever that person is will be gone by Hollywood.
4. I cannot remember where i found this, but i wrote it down. It's a quote by Kurt Cobain: "I'd rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I'm not"
5. My favorite song by Nirvana: I have to tell the truth. I only have one: Smells Like Teen Spirit. It try to be a cool 50 year old suburbian and want to like the stuff that the masses don't know, but truth is: I am that suburban 50 year old chick.
6. I like to think i am cooler than Laura Bush. I'm thinking I might even be cooler than Caroline Kennedy. But i cannot say for sure. (What i do know is that i am smart enough to know that i am probably not cooler than Michelle Obama.)
7. I would LOVE to go out for chardonnay with Michelle. Wouldn't you?
9 Actually i think i would love to go out with Caroline too. (But not Laura.) Only I think Caroline seems like the type who probably orders only one glass of non-descript white wine... (or worse... a cup of earl grey tea. ) And i so hate knocking back chardonnays by myself with folks who are drinking some prissy libation.
10. So i think i am going to hang out with Kennedys at all.....well.... it's gotta be Teddy!
11. (Besides at HIS age. ... he'll think I'M still hot.)
13. Isn't it weird for those of us who are Baby Boomers? Our President Elect Obama is not only the first African American President. . . he is also the first president elected who is younger than we are.
14. OK. so what's on your mind. Even if you are drinking earl grey tea, wine, or koolaid?

15. Edited for photo resizing and also to say ..nobody noticed how badly i numbered these! (I just noticed it myself.)

Sunday, January 11, 2009

My Semi-Risky Businesses


Music playing: Jakob Dylan's "Valley of the Low Sun"
What I am drinking: Earl Grey tea
Mood: Good
Exercise: Running in the park with my sister-in-law
The best thing that happened: Finished running
News I read : there were a lot of obituaries in today's paper.

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One of the things I should put in my profile is that I am NOT a risk taker. Cause I’m not. And so I was trying to think of ways I DO take risks. And this is ALL I can come up. It’s a pretty far reaching list and probably cannot even qualify as a risk.

1. Loaning out books: I love my books as if they were children. I love them more than shoes, I love them more than wine. And every time I loan one out I worry that it won’t be returned or that someone will bend the pages. So loaning them out is a risk for me.

Quite awhile ago I loaned the book “Marley and Me” to my friend Dick at work. When he returned it last month, this is the shape it was in. His dog, Maddy chewed it up! He knows how I feel about my books but waited for my reaction before he handed me over a brand new copy too. I was laughing so hard at the chewed up copy. And in the end I gave him back the brand new copy. I’m keeping the copy that Maddy the dog chewed up. (The publisher should have found a way to market the book so that it looked like this!)

2. Chardonnay Risks: Sometimes after drinking more than a couple of glasses of chardonnay I go on iTunes and shop for music. The last weird song I bought was Fatboy Slim’s song “Rockafeller Skank”. If I had not been drinking wine, I also probably would not have bought the whole Instant Karma Amnesty John Lennon cd set, (not to mention the songs I buy that I already own!)

Also sometimes when I have been drinking wine I decide to tweeze my eyebrows. (Luckily my eyebrows are like Ernest Borgnine’s or I should say one of those Jonas Brothers - they are so thick that any mistakes can be sort of hidden.)

3. Phone Risks: Every time I pick up the phone when I see on the caller ID that it’s my mother calling…well, that’s definitely a risk.

4. Self image risks: Looking in my 7 x magnifying mirror everyday. (No one over 40 should own such a mirror.)

I keep trying these new skin care products from Estee Lauder, Murad Laura Mercier. And it keeps wreaking even more havoc with my skin. Not to mention what a waste of money. (FYI Murad, is definitely overrated.) My skin is just getting old and I have to accept that.

5. Getting old is a risk.

6. Running & Flyfishing Risks: I suppose you could say running and exercise is a risk. You know, I could get bit by a dog or even kidnapped. Though in my 29 years of running (my 1980 new year’s resolution!) I have never been in any danger. Same with flyfishing. I could fall in the river or get eaten by a cougar or struck by lightning. (I do worry about these things too but taking Xanax while flyfishing would be an even bigger risk!)

7. Driving Risks: I have a two mile commute to work but sometimes I do have to drive I-5. It’s a dangerous interstate. I think someone dies on it every day.

8. Honesty Risks: Telling the truth when someone asks you for an opinion is a risk…i.e….”do you think I look good in bangs?”

9. Food Risks: Eating raw oysters.

See what I mean? Ok so what are the risks that y’all take?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Totally Random Stuff I’m thinking about while taking down my Christmas Tree

1. I am drinking a glass of Bogle shiraz (first & last for the night, cause right now I am sneezing my head off. I have been taking down the Christmas tree and I’m allergic.

2. I live in the Pacific Northwest and having a fake Christmas tree here (to me) is sacrilegious. Sacrilegious in the same way that people who live in Santa Barbara or Napa Valley drinking Mogen David wines would be.

3. If you are not Jewish (or of some other religion that prohibits a tree) and tell me you never put up a Christmas tree I will probably give you a look that is very similar to the one I give people who tell me they never vote because all candidates are alike. (So praise the Lord and pass the antihistamine!)

4. I bought the Ashton Kucher Nikon D90 camera, which also shoots video. I hate learning new technology but I do like photography and after recently paying $50 to process three rolls of film I’m liking the idea more and more.

5. Nikon is very smart, cause if they had hired a different celebrity….say Tom Cruise, Jim Carrey or Paula Abdul to pimp the D90 I would not have even thought about that camera.

6. I am taking the day off from work to watch Obama’s inauguration. I like to think that I am excellent speller, but I have to admit that every single time I type inauguration I have to spell check it. (I always forget the first “U”).

7. I am not meaning this to be mean, but I am not sure why John Travolta’s son’s death is getting the attention that it is.

8. I just finished the book “American Wife” which is loosely based on Laura Bush. I didn’t expect to like it but I did. It is LOOSELY based on her story, but there are enough parallels to her life that make it difficult not to think of Laura and George while reading. I was most entertained by how Curtis Sittenfeld wrote the “Barbara Bush” character. I'm still plugging along on the "Edgar Sawtelle" book. I should have known when Oprah picked it.

9. I’m drinking tea now cause it’s the next day. I am not so funny with tea so I’m just gonna get these posted and go watch a DVD. (Tea is so boring and tastes like hot water to me, but I do like the medicinal soothing nature of it, even if it is not exactly my muse.)

So what are y’all thinking about?

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's resolutions I wish other people would make

1. People need to stop answering their cell phones when I am out with them.

2. Vote! - yes, EVEN in the primaries.

3. I want folks to refrain from complaining about their problems if they are totally unwilling to do anything about them. Either ACCEPT them as a resolution or DO SOMETHING. (Just stop bitching to me about them.)

4. Find a charity that they believe in and contribute what is possible. If people have no money, then volunteer.

5. Say 'thank you' more often. People really don't do this enough anymore.

6. Parents need to STOP doing too much for their kids. I'm hoping and expecting these kids to to take our place someday but too many kids behave as if they entitled to everything.

7. Parents should introduce their kids to charity and have them work for something on their own that doesn't involve a kickback.

8. Don't overindulge in ANYTHING. Be it exercise, drinking, pot smoking, religion, recycling, talking, silence, tv, computer, etc.

9. If you are one to often give your opinion, please don't act like you are the final authority in the middle of your debate.

10. Make a resolution to ask more questions of people. Be curious. Most people love it.

11. Drink more water than wine.

12. If you are a vegan, please stop preaching to me about it and i promise not to secretly use bacon drippings in my dishes if I have you to dinner.

(OK, before anyone thinks i am being pious and righteous, let me say right here, some of these are my very own resolutions, especially #9 and #11. )