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Saturday, March 29, 2008

What I asked...

Versus what she heard...

Thursday morning, I put on a new shirt. I woke Honey up and asked if the shirt was too sheer. I handed her her glasses and turned on the light behind me.

She thought I asked if the shirt was too short.

Confident in her answer, she said no.

At no point did I think the shirt was too short.

It was, however, too sheer.

I spent half the day with my jean jacket on (despite the 78 degree SoCal spring day). The other half I spent with my office lights off.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Sleep, on not getting enough

It may be a sign of getting old, but I find myself increasingly unable to sleep through the night. Honey has always maintained that I am truly amazing in my ability to get to sleep in the first place.

Lately, I've been waking up in the middle of the night. For a while, I wrote it off to pee needs. Go ahead, I'd tell myself, pee and the you'll drop right back off to sleep.

I really don't want to get too reliant on non prescription sleeping pills. Drugs are bad. Nancy Reagan said so.

Truth is, though, when I wake up in the middle of the night, I become acutely aware of discomfort. My ears hurt from the ear plugs I wear because of the dogs. My arms hurt because I tend to fall asleep with them underneath me. My brain comes alive with it's weird loopy patterns. Song lyrics have dominated lately. I rarely get back to sleep.

I still haven't solved the sleep number crevasse problem. (And before anyone asks, no I didn't call them back, despite their offer to help. I don't have the information she asked for and can't really get it--given that we have the "cheap ass sleep number" (or CASN).

So, for now, it's going to have to be Advil PM or Simply Sleep. I'd blame this all on my recent transition to my fifth decade, but since it predates that, I'll just assume it's some kind of karmic punishment for, well, bad karma.

Point of post, for those who like such summations:


Thank you, that is all.

Friday, March 21, 2008


Last week, I took our extra microwave out to the garage. We had acquired it through abandonment, along with an immovable hutch from the estate of the previous owner of our house. We didn't actually need two microwaves. This one had begun to make odd noises and it needed to be abandoned by us. (Shouldn't twice abandoned appliances simply vaporize?)

It's former space is now occupied by two coffee burr grinders and Honey's coffee pot. We're such coffee geeks. She's been drinking decaf since her brain went a little jazzy on her in our visit to the fiftieth state. I acquired a second burr grinder for us, so our coffee consumption can continue unabated. To be clear, in addition to the burr grinders, we also have a filtered water drip coffee maker (for her) and a espresso pot and the magical wonder that is the aerolatte for me.

I thought about our coffee as substance this morning, when I received from the fine institution I work for the updated campus guide to a drug free workplace. I dutifully clicked through and was greeted by our policy and a list of the substances in question that might be abused. They also provided, quite handily, a chart of their nom de narcotics. For example:

COCAINE/CRACK (Blow, bump, C, candy, Charlie, flake, rock, snow)


ALCOHOL (Beer, wine, liquor, malt liquor, booze, juice, sauce, hooch)

They also listed the effects of these substances on the user. Back to cocaine, or as I now think of it, bump:

Irritability and depression

Impaired decision-making


I excerpted but have all three of those things. Hmm.

On Wednesday, I was home a little early, impaired, apparently, by my use of Charlie, though I don't recall actually encountering it. I heard a ruckus outside. I went out to find that some kids had been playing with some safety glass that had been left deposited outside our fence. Sigh. I love our neighbors so. Anyway, the kids had moved the safety glass into our driveway. However "safe" it was, I didn't want to leave it there for my Honey to drive over when she got home. I fetched our broom and dustpan and began to sweep it up. Seemingly out of nowhere a woman appeared.

She seemed pleasant and said she had seen the kids playing with the glass. I mumbled something about the joys of our neighborhood. She offered to hold the dustpan for me. I tried to demur, but was unsuccessful. When I looked up at her, I noticed she was crying.

It turned out that she was on her first day as a door to door salesperson for a cleaning product. "No one cares," she said to me.

She wanted very badly to demo the product for me, which she claimed to "clean anything" including our picket fence. Why in the world would I want to clean our picket fence? Answer: I wouldn't.

I have a long history of feeling bad for people like this and she was throwing the works at me. She said something about how tired she was, how lonely she was, that she had tried to quit at lunch, and then there was that "no one cares" mantra. The product, she said, was environmentally friendly. I asked what was in it. She didn't know, but said it was biodegradable.

I tried valiantly to extract myself. She said her supervisor was picking her up at 7pm. She would just wait for him and smoke a cigarette. If I wanted to check out the ingredients of the product online, I could decide what I wanted to do. She asked for a match or a lighter. When I said I didn't have one, she cried a little more and said she wouldn't smoke the cigarette after all.

I went inside. Let the dogs into the house. I looked up the product. No ingredients listed on their website either. It had SUCH a generic name, it was practically ungoogleable. My choices? Stay inside and feel bad for her. Go back outside, give her a check for $64 for a gallon of crap I didn't want, need, or know the make-up of. (Did I mention that the product was SIXTY FOUR DOLLARS?!) I thought some more. When faced with either/or choices, I like to try to think if there is another choice. I remembered that we had been given a lighter in our Advocate 40th Anniversary gift bag. I had proposed throwing it away. Honey, in her wisdom, had urged keeping it. I found it (it was gift boxed!) and went outside. I gave it to the saleswoman and wished her luck.

So, despite my current seeming abuse of some substance or another (if symptoms are any indicator), I was pleased to have a moment of clarity. Now, if I can just figure out what drugs to take to counter-act all these other symptoms...


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Um, eww

Teresa told me yesterday about a friend and colleague of hers who used to be subjected to his mother's one and only dessert recipe which involved bananas and Miracle Whip (and water and sugar).

All day, while trying to make some sense of the mess that is my office, my brain loop (and my brain is VERY loop-rific right now) keeps slinging by the banana/Miracle Whip combo. Brain loops drive me crazy. They seem to have gotten worse as I've gotten older. I worry sometimes that in 20 years or so I'll only be able to think about one thing. Corn Flakes. An episode of Cheers. Poppies. While I'm not focused on any of those things right now, if you had told me 24 hours ago that one (of several) of my current obsessive brain loops would be bananas and Miracle Whip, I'd have laughed. I never know what road signs my brain will think to linger by.

I just Googled bananas and Miracle Whip and came up with a large hit total. 244,000 hits. Many of which recipe.

I loathe Miracle Whip, by the way, so I'm doubly horrified at the idea of two hundred thousand web sites that concern themselves with it vis a vis bananas.

The additional problem with this loop pattern is that it inevitably leads me down food free association roads best not traveled.

Peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches (which I have been offered on multiple occasions).

Pimento cheese.


Tomato mucus.

Goose grease French toast.

I could go on. Given the current state of my brain, I probably will internally.



Friday, March 14, 2008

Lost goodness

Ok, a quick Friday thought...

I heart Lost. Really really heart it. Need to watch it again from the beginning heart it.

Also, I heart Elizabeth Mitchell. She's so dreamy.


She's my tv girlfriend. Teresa said it's ok to have a tv girlfriend and she's mine.

(To be clear, I have now claimed both Elizabeth Mitchell and Sequoia National Park. Entitlements that are meaningless=fun.)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Six words

The Misanthrope over at Toner Mishap, bless his heart, tagged me. I feel so, well, touched. In a good way.

Herewith the rules:

1. Write your own six word memoir

2. Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you’d like

3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post and to this original post if possible so we can track it as it travels across the blogosphere

4 Tag five more blogs with links

5. And don’t forget to leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play!

Herewith the picture:


What kind of secret could Halo tell the stuffed meerkat?

Herewith the bio:

Paddled canoe early. Map still evolving.

Herewith the tags:

Everyone. I really can't think of anyone who has a blog I read whose six words I don't want to read.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Pineapple phun

"Pineapple princess", he calls me pineapple princess all day
As he plays his ukulele on the hill above the bay
"Pineapple princess, I love you, you're the sweetest girl I've seen"
"Some day we're gonna marry and you'll be my pineapple queen"

So sang Annette Funicello some time ago. My honey channeled Ms. Funicello as we approached the Dole Pineapple Plantation.

O'ahu was not, to be real for a moment, my favorite of Hawai'i's islands. We only visited the two. It came in second and I suspect would continue to sink down the rankings had we visited more. Do you remember how Casey Kasem used to disparage songs as they slipped down the chart? Really, he was criticizing us, his listeners, for letting it happen to the songs. I always found it off-putting. How was there room on the chart for "Leader of the Band" if "Heat of the Moment" didn't slip off? Hmm? Didn't think you had an answer.

I can just hear Mr. Kasem saying, "last week this island was at number 2, but now that Kaua'i has surged, O'ahu drops to number 3."

At any rate, with O'ahu holding steady at #2, Honey and I explored its offerings. In the middle of the island, we discovered (the maps and signs helped quite a lot) something that NO ONE else knows about. They have pineapples on O'ahu. Dole does. Pineapples. Can you imagine?


They've had pineapples there for over one hundred years.

Ok, seriously, the Dole Plantation was cheesy in just the right way.


It featured the above shown pineappletunities. Notice that my level of excitement was such I could not keep my hand still enough for my point and shoot camera to focus.

Beyond the maze, train, and garden, there was a ginormous retail facility. They even had "Dole Radio" (on which Mr. Kasem was not featured). Dole Radio kept promising pineapple cutting demonstrations and Honey and I kept going to try to find them. It was all for naught. There was no cutting of pineapple. What there was was a tremendously long line at the end of which one could purchase pineapple ice cream and the like.

We confined our pineapple shopping to pineapple memorabilia.


(Sample only, not an actual purchase).

I was thrilled at the level of pineapple crap. It was really beyond measure. It certainly outstripped the macadamia nut people in terms of square footage and variety.


Actually, to be fair, we bought plenty at both nutland and pineappleland. Honey has been sporting a nightshirt that I bought her that says, "I got totally nuts on the Big Island of Hawaii" and I may have some mac nut socks. Nutland wins over pineappleland in the crucial sampling area, too. They'll give you nuts at Mauna Loa. At Dole, they keep announcing the aforementioned phantom pineapple demo and sampling. We stood under the sign that said "Pineapple Demonstration" alone and unwanted.

All was not despair, though. There were pineapple "costumes" to try on!


Notice, please, that I purchased a Dole hat and immediately put it on. Shame did not walk with me in O'ahu. Pineapple fun walked with me instead.

My excitement over the Pineapple Express can only be described as extreme. A small train. Pineapples. I channeled my inner six year old, that is if my inner six year old had $15.50 extra to spend on a 20 minute train ride. She didn't, so my outer 39 year old had to pony up.

I'm sure you're dying to know what happens on the Pineapple Express. You see pineapples!


Also pineapple topiary.


Plus, there's pineapple narration on the Pineapple Express, wherein we learned that James Dole's real claim to fame (besides buying the whole island of Lana'i and turning it into a big pineapple plantation) was canning pineapples.


Good to know that some genius at Dole thought that pineapple should be artificially sweetened. Pineapples aren't sweet on their own. Not even a little bit.

Interspersed with the narration, we were treated to musical interludes. Guess what one of the songs was?

"Pineapple princess", I love you, you're the sweetest girl I've seen
"Some day we're gonna marry and you'll be my pineapple queen"

We may have sung along.

Getting off the train, we were given our only pineapple sample. It may have been the best pineapple I've ever tasted.

We toured the pineapple garden. The way they grow is amazing. They're heavy, you know.


This one had grown itself a nice head of pineapple leaves.

There were some regrets. We discovered a two-for-one Pineapple Maze coupon in our car rental map after we had forgone that attraction. You already know about the pineapple demo lie. We didn't see Pineapple Pete.


We also didn't see the lady with him.

The truth is, though, it was a rockin' pineapple time. So good that since we've been back I've worn my hat, Honey has worn her pineapple shirt. Our Pineapple Pete magnet is featured on our refrigerator between the lava magnet and the Nene magnet. We've bought two pineapples. We've sung "Pineapple Princess."

O'ahu is holding steady at #2 because of the wondrous pineapplepertunities.


As [I] plays [my] ukulele on the hill above the bay...