29 October 2009

"Let's call the whole thing off" --Ira and George Gershwin

I have a friend who I love. Dearly. There's just one little, itty, bitty thing she does that irritates me.*

When looking at art--and we both like to look at art--she will talk about the particular palette for the piece. But instead of saying palette like I would, and like Miriam Webster's online pronunciation does, and like every other person I've ever heard does, she will say pa-LET, with the accent on the second syllable. Now, it's a French word and maybe in Pa-REE that's how they say it. I dunno. Never took French.** But it comes off sounding pretentious and goofy.

Here's the thing, I can't really say anything because I am guilty of similar transgressions.*** I make a Rachael Ray**** appetizer of endive, mandarin oranges, almond slivers and goat cheese. And it's good, I tell ya. It's really hard to get it wrong, which is a key requirement for my kitchen successes. If I tell people what they're eating? I say on-DEEV instead of en-dive, as Miriam says it. Because that's the way I learned it, right or wrong--dunno, no French, remember?** And even as I'm saying it, I think: Jeez, how pretentious. But it doesn't stop me from saying on-DEEV next time.

So, what do you say all pretentious and snooty like? Do you ever intentionally mispronounce something just to see if someone's paying attention?*** When someone else pronounces something wonky, do you call them out or embrace the potato, poTAHto philosophy?

* Pretty good, right? Just one thing? Dang good, I'd say! When I was in high school, a friend told me that at most you got 80% of what you wanted in another person and it was just a matter of choosing what 80% was important to you and what 20% of the yeech you could tolerate. Like Frost said, that has made all the difference.

** Shut up. You know what I mean.

***Forgive me, Blogger, for I have sinned.

****You say Antichrist, I say Easy Appetizer Supplier. It's not like I have to listen to her giggling when I make it. Wow, can you imagine if you heard the Rachael Ray giggle all the time like some sort of horror show tinnitus? *shudder*

28 October 2009

"I got a rock" --C. Brown

So, all right, it's Wednesday. I have five meetings today. And those are just the planned ones. But, you know, I'll be in those meetings thinking of you. Totally you, my cheeky monkey. Because, let's face it, I'm not going to think about work no matter what they tell me and I can only think of jewelry for so long before I start to drool, and that's really bad form.

Anyway, I'm gonna get all metaphysical on you today. Because I've noticed a theme in the universe of late and who am I to ignore a theme? Yeah, in a book I read last week and the television show I saw last night (don't judge), there was a theme: that you always have a choice. That no matter how terrible your life may be, you still can choose a good path within the choices you have.

Question of the day: Do you believe you mostly have control in your life? Or that life is just something that happens to you? Discuss.

AlternateHeyLALightenTheHeckUpQuestion: Will there ever be as good an animated holiday special as the Charlie Brown specials? Discuss.

And, finally, is it wrong that I really do dance like a Charlie Brown character?

27 October 2009

Five reasons it's better to be at work than on vacation

[The new roomier economy class seats.]

¡Hola, monos descarados!

We are back from Cozumel and I am once again back in the work-a-day world. What a relief! I thought that vacation would never end. Sheesh.

The five reasons it's better to be at work than on vacation:

1. I don't have to struggle to decide which blender drink to order next. So taxing.

2. No panicking over where I put my passport. Or my immigration form, which, technically, they tell you upon entering Mexico you'll need in order to leave the country and I, um, managed to not have on hand when it was time to leave the country. Oh, I knew it was somewhere. In the sense that everything is somewhere. I apologized. In Spanish, even. For some reason that was not sufficient. I offered to just stay in Mexico. But, no. So, what happened? I filled out a different form and paid a visit to an immigration official and we were off. No bribes. No sexual favors. In all honesty, I don't think the Mexican government gives a damn about the quality of my blog posts. Bastards.

3. No sand in unexpected places. Nuff said.

4. When I say "That's a
lot of information" I mean it, as opposed to just being snarky about someone wearing an ill-fitting swimsuit. We saw a lot of body love there. A lot. Healthy, right? So what if you're a size 24? You want to rock a size 6 bikini, you go right ahead.

5. I can really focus my mind on the important things without distractions. The most important thing? Planning the next vacation.

26 October 2009

"I am a rock" --Simon and Garfunkel

Pssst! Over here... in the bathroom! If you can just open up the medicine cabinet for me...

Thanks! Now look down here...

Here I am. Name's Rock.

I know I'm hard to see. I've gotten pale in captivity. You'd be sickly looking, too, if you were kidnapped and kept for two years in a medicine cabinet, far from your beloved home. I used to be a beautiful pale green... the color of the sea that I was frolicking in, carefree, when she grabbed me. Oh, sure... at first it was exciting. A new adventure. But the thrill is gone. Look at me. I've turned city pasty. Yuck!

I've had enough of this! They're going back and I'll be damned if they leave me behind! If I can just inch over to the edge... and... oof!

There! But there are more perils on this journey.

Dang! That's high. No turning back now...


No, no. I'm all right. Just a little dazed. I've got to continue... *hustle*hustle*


Talk about a long haul down a long hall... *hustle*hustle*




Finally! My ticket to ride! *hustle*hustle*



{A mere two plane rides later...}

At last!

Ahhhh!!!! It's so good to be home!

06 October 2009

"Save me from these evil deeds before I get them done" --Fiona Apple

[Peep show.]

I am burned out like a toasty, crispy, ... piece of... um... ... ... burnt thing.

See? Yeah, I got nothin'. And still a week to go before vacation. *taps foot* What to do... what to do... Why, it's the perfect time to receive an award!

Yes! I've gotten an award. Well, my goodness! Oh wait... goodness has nothing to do with it. It's the You Shoulda Been a Stripper Award (pictured above) from Little Ms Blogger. Um, thanks!(?)

Please don't tell Mum.

I guess I'll go with honored. Not everybody has the ability to vamp a pole in blogville but, in truth, I would probably be the one working the pole with the Clorox spray bottle and the paper towels. Because, ew. I mean, really, can you see me in 6 inch heels and a g-string and... hey, why are you looking at me that way? Knock it off before I call jp to bounce your ass out of here.

I'm supposed to list 7 of my personality traits, as evidenced on my blog and then pass the award on to 7 other blogs with notable personality. Me? Personality? Who knew?* So, before Kanye jumps up here and tells everybody that Lexa should have won it, I better get on with this...

  1. Inquisitive. I've been told on a number of occasions that I would have made a good lawyer. Not because I'm eloquent. Not because I'm knowledgeable. Not because of the billable hours, dang it. But because I interrogate. I am forever asking questions and sometimes they're rapid fire and pointed and, really, you don't expect us to believe you were nowhere near the pint of Cherry Garcia when it went missing, do you?!**
  2. Playful. I've been short of it lately but I'm on the brink of a vacation and I'll get my play back, I promise. *feels weight of water balloon in hand* *smiles* *wiggles eyebrows*
  3. Incredulous. I am often unwilling to accept what is clearly true in the world around me. I am frequently in a state of "Wait, what did she just say to me?" Hence, my misfortune = your entertainment.
  4. Impatient. Next!
  5. Earwormy. I often title my posts with a snippet of lyric. Because life is a song. And just a bowl of cherries. And a highway (I want to drive it all night long). If you don't remember my ideas, you'll remember the snippet of lyric and it will slowly drive you and everyone around you quite mad because you can't not hum that stanza, can you? So, that's a cheery thought. My little gift to the world.
  6. Artsy. Let's not forget the celery rose.
  7. Confessional. You don't have to wear the priest's collar but if you want to... er, anyway, yeah, if I can't tell you, then who? Let's face it, you've provided me with enough material to create an effective double bind for any blackmail attempt. In a nutshell, you're deeply disturbed and I find that really comforting.
There. Enough. On to the next victi--proud recipients. And, because I am an equal opportunity debaucher, and because they're the minority here in blogland***, I'm putting the following men up there in the spotlight (can I get a boom-chika, boom-chika, boom-chika please?):

Al in the Country

Bowie Living

Bradford Pearson

Farm Fresh Meat

Malnurtured Snay

Sean's Ramblings

Toby or Not Toby

So, let's give them a big hand, shall we?!

*the crowd goes wild*

And, as long as we're on the topic, how about a question of the day: Are strip clubs sexy?

* What? Every award recipient demonstrates false modesty. You'd prefer I thank Jesus?

** Judge: "Mr. Kirkland, you are out of order."
Kirkland: "You're out of order! You're out of order! The whole trial is out of order!"

God, I love that scene.

*** It's terrible the way they only make 70 blog cents to every blog dollar we make.

02 October 2009

"Closer" --Ne-yo

*glares at calendar* Fine, October. I'm in winter clothes. Are you happy?

Moving on...

So, who's up for an experiment? Today, I've come to talk about proximity. Physical proximity. It's heady stuff. It can be used to intimidate and menace. It can also be used to entice. And, a few years ago, I learned it can have another use...

  • I went to ask an entertaining instructor a question and he smiled and walked toward me as I was speaking. He didn't stop. I was mid-asking and he was smiling and still walking. Eventually, I broke off with my question, discombobulated and alarmed that he might crash into me. I backed up. He kept toward me, smiling until he was probably a foot from me. Finally, I stammered out, "What are you doing?" He told me he'd done research and found that he could break down resistance quickly by literally getting close to people, by getting into their personal space--not in a threatening way but in a determined, friendly way. He was overdoing it to make the point but danged if he wasn't right. The mind follows the body. Much like smiling can improve your mood, getting closer to someone will get them feeling closer to you.
Try this with someone you like who you think likes you. Believe me, you'll find out quickly how good your instincts are. I'm not talking about jumping them or going nose to nose, just get a little closer physically than you normally would--come in a few inches--and watch their reaction. See if they aren't a bit discombobulated. See if their walls don't break down a little quicker. And if it's too hard for you to do this straight on, try getting closer from the side. Report back, I'd love to know how it works for you.

Obvious caveats that, if ignored, will get you a bloody nose or worse:
  • Don't sneak up from behind.
  • Don't do this in a high stress situation.
  • Don't do this with people that detest you.
  • Don't do this at work.
  • Deodorant and mouthwash are good things. Use them.

01 October 2009

"Beautiful liar" --Beyonce & Shakira

(Yes, yes, I'm still here. Thanks for putting down some newspapers and a bowl of kibble. Mmm, kibble. By the way, that whole thing about adding water to make a gravy? Pretty much just wet kibble.)

I recently had someone I work with tell me, in confidence, that he really admired Mary, because Mary might hate you and you'd never know it as Mary would give no indication of her true feelings.

I find that bizarre. First, because I've met Mary and liked Mary and worked with Mary many times and now I find myself wondering what the heck she thinks of me. Guess I'll never know for sure. Secondly, the fact that he really admired this trait was more than a little off-putting. At least I had enough political savvy not to share my negative reaction with him. But I wasn't about to agree with him.

The whole thing reminded me of Shakespeare:
"Why, I can smile,
and murder whiles I smile,

And cry 'Content!' to that which grieves my heart,
And wet my cheeks with artificial tears,

And frame my face to all occasions."

Where it is politically expedient to be able to do such a thing, I am not an admirer of all things political. Even in this town. Perhaps if I had developed Mary's capacity for duplicity, I might embrace lying more. Maybe.

But to what end?

I've had someone else tell me that no one sees the real her, except her husband. She told me this with great pride.

I can't relate. I am blunt. I am honest. Sometimes--oh, who am I kidding--often to a fault. Where I do at times exercise discretion, I don't really want to live a life where I'm hiding my thoughts constantly. But maybe that's a naive attitude.

Which brings us to today's question: How honest are you in your day to day life? If you had to put a percentage on it, what would it be? And, finally, if you had the power to be, would you be like Mary?