Wednesday, March 31, 2010

To Judge a Reader by their Book(s)

I used to make fun of people who met on the internet.  If you were to tell me five years ago, that you met your sweet spouse or best friend via one of the internet's social spots, I would have stared at you blankly.  Then I'd have a good pee shiver and say to myself, "that's creepy." 

Turns out I have a handful of great friends who -- brace yourself -- have all been met through this here social spot called the blogger.  I've gone from eye-ball-rolling and "that's creepy," to gaze-up-at-the heavens and "that's wonderful!"  (Grammatically, that sentence blew giant chunks, but oh well.  It's stayin.)

The first time I met one of my internet blogger buddies in person, the Spouse cocked one of his eyebrows and looked at me sideways.  He was sure I had lost it (more.)  Now I can say something like "next week I'm flying to New Zealand to meet Charlotte," and Spouse will say "Oh, okay," then go back to inhaling whatever grub I've thrown before him.  He might even add something like, "The hunting is great there.  You should see about getting a permit before you go."

Internet friends are business-as-usual now.

(By the way, I've learned that there are many who take me too literally, like my Mom.  Therefore it is necessary to clarify that, no, I'm not psychotic enough to drop everything for a stranger in New Zealand.  I might, however, be brave and meet someone in Payson.)

A couple of weeks ago, I had complained in this post that I was tired of skiing alone.   And wouldn't you know, a comment was left by Makell.  She mentioned that she felt the same and wanted to get a group of girls together for skiing throughout the year.  I thought that was a great idea.  However, I'm not so keen on strangers, really.  Even though I have great friends with whom I've met in the intersphere, we usually e-mail for about, oh, say, a whole year before meeting in person.

And so it was, that I spent some time performing "research" on this Makell person.  I read her blog for a while one night.  I thought, "She's smart, that's for sure.  She's very pretty, that's for sure.  She seems fun, that's for sure.  But can I spend a whole day with her?"

This is when I discovered her Shelfari  Do you know Shelfari?  This Shelfari stuff is new to me.  Basically it's like facebook for readers.  Kind of.  But not really.  You create an account on this Shelfari thing and report what books you've read, the book(s) you are currently reading as well as the books you intend to read.

After rummaging through Makell's book selections on Shelfari, it was clear that I could, without a doubt, spend a whole day with her.

Which brings up an interesting point, can you judge a person by their blog?  The verdict is still out on that one for you never know if the blogger is being honest or if they are just plain full of crap (like me.)  What I have learned, however, is that you can judge a reader by their books. 

Makell and I skied on Tuesday.  She's a keeper.

-

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tuesday Tune vol 34 - March's Departed

Today's Tuesday Tunes are brought to you again by Vera. 

Who is Vera?  Vera is my little buddy that lives three houses up, on the same side.  We became friends beneath unconventional circumstances.  Vera was let-go, laid-off, canned, whatever, just minutes after I calfed Yahoo #1.  Since we were both newly unemployed, we'd hang.  Every day, around 4:00pm, I'd wander up and lay my colic-ey cub beneath her flowering cherry tree.  Vera, armed with her cocktail of choice and I with a diet Sprite, would sit there -- just like a couple of porch monkeys.  To this day Stu Pidasso (Vera's not-so-better half) calls me the "Drinkin' Buddy." 

Vera saved The Rabid from that post pardum depression thing.  She's a great distraction.  (Incidentally, the post pardum came back when Vera found another job.)

Speaking of distractions, April Fool's Day is fast approaching.  I'm currently on year six of the five-year-fool-the-Vera plan.  The first year, I kidnapped her awful (awesome) Kentucky Derbyish hat and delivered a ransom note that demanded a 12-pack of diet coke in exchange.  The second year was a yard full of home-made pink flamingos.  The only thing more white-trash and tacky than a pink flamingo is a home-made pink flamingo.  The third year was 80 or so 10-inch cardboard cutouts of yours truly, strategically placed in Vera's cupboards, closets and whatnot.  The fourth year was the attack of Jeff Gordon, wherein thousands of Jeff Gordan sticky notes and 4x6 glossies, were stuck every which where. The fifth year was the Lost Extravaganza

Which brings us to year six. 

Wouldn't you know, Vera has decided to be gone for this holy of all holy holidays.  She's going to Moab to drive her jeep.  Gay.  So maybe the joke of year six is that she gets no joke.  Hah!  That'll show her.

(But if any of you out there have an irresistible joke/gag, by all means, drop me a line at TheRabidRunner [at] gmail.com.  Um... don't leave a comment, because... you know...she's been known to visit here from time-to-time.)

Now we shall move on to this week's Tuesday Tunes -- which are inspired by those who departed in March.  New this month, Vera has so thoughtfully provided us with how these artists actually did the departing.  Enjoy.

Son of a Preacher Man - Dusty Springfield (cancer)
The Weight - The Band (RIP Richard Manuel, suicide)
Y.M.C.A. - The Village People (RIP "biker" Glenn Highes, cancer)
I Fall To Pieces - Patsy Cline (plane crash)
Truckin' (American Beauty) - Grateful Dead (RIP Ron Pigpen McKernan (gastrointestinal bleeding)
Hypnotize - Notorious B.I.G. (gun shot)
More Than A Feeling - Boston (RIP Brad Delp, suicide)
Hootin' The Blues - Sonny Terry (natural causes)
Someone Is Going To Ruin Me - T-Bone Walker (pneumonia)
California Dreamin' - Mama's And The Papa's (RIP John Phillips, Heart Failure)
Cum On Feel The Noize - Quiet Rio (RIP Randy Rhodes, plane crash)
Crown Of Thorns - Mother Love Bone (Andrew Wood, heroin overdose)
Where Have All The Flowers Gone - Kingston Trio (RIP Dave Guard, cancer)
La soirée dans Grenade - Claude Debussy (cancer)
Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig van Beethoven (cirrhosis of the liver and dropsy)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Apprentice Prediction

Are you watching IT?

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I predict Curtis Stone wins...

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Power Rest

I am smack dab in the middle of earning my merit badge for left leg ITBS.  See that's the great thing about having two legs -- it grants the opportunity for double merit badges.  Lucky-fer-me, I have already earned my merit badge for ITBS in the right leg.  I'm so very blessed that way.

Incidentally, I refuse to verbalize the I-word because, well, Runners never say "injury." Just like Goonies Never Say "Die."  It's true. We just don't.

I have this I-word prevention/treatment ritual that I jump into each time I feel the slightest hint of any I-word inducing merit badge or belt loop.  I take four days off.  And by off, I mean completely off.  No cross training, no nothing.  I rent videos.  And while I watch videos for a day or two, I move as little as possible.  I stretch.  I walk only to the freezer for an ice pack.  I order the Yahoos to clean the house and make the dinner.  (Hah!  As if the Yahoos will clean the house and make the dinner without me riding them.  As if!  It was worth dreaming about, however.)

Anyway.  Here I sit.  Resting.  Stretching.  And Icing.  I've watched The Blind Side, Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, Julie and Julia, and two others that I won't admit.  This Power Rest business is gonna work.  It does every time.  Pretty soon I'll be running like a banshee who just earned another merit badge.

Rewards!

-

Friday, March 26, 2010

March 26, 2010

Today marks the two-year anniversary of the day Spouse Crushed his Calcaneuses. Today we plan to celebrate walking. Walking is good. Walking is great. We love walking.

We also plan to watch this video of Tanner Hall breaking his calcaneuses. (Actually, Tanner Hall broke both ankles in addition to both calcaneuses.) This video is a bit graphic but it shows some rehab footage that I find rather touching. Touching in a Wow-The-Human-Spirit-Always-Prevails kind of way.  Speaking of human spirit - have I told you how awesomely Spouse whethered that storm?  Spouse whethered that storm with the strength and willpower of eight Tanner Halls.  And two cheetahs. And three guinea pigs.  And four or five pin cushions.

In a weird way, I will forever miss that summer for it was a summer of love.  Tragedy is good.  Tragedy is a great opportunity to show the world, and mostly yourself, what you're made of.  It's a great opportunity to practice humility, kindness and service.  A "good" tragedy can also make our lives easier by forcing us to align our priorities.  Suddenly, as if by magic, you can clearly see what is important. 

I've seen a few tragic incidents since then and I always look to them in a sacred kind of yearning awe.  I know that the victims of these "good" tragedies have had their priorities magically aligned.  Aligned in a way that only a "good" tragedy can facilitate.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

High-Horse-Soap-Box

I feel like saddling a high-horse and climbing on a soap box today. Doesn't that sound fun? Does to me. I'm not particularly bent about anything, but I feel as if an exercise in self-righteousness is about due. This prolly has something to do with the fact that I did laundry all dang day yesterday. Get it? Soap box? Laundry?

So now I'm going to rack the brain for some things to be on my high-horse-soap-box about.

Soapbox Item #1
Let's start with laundry. Who on this lovely green and brown earth decided we need clean clothes all of the time? Can't we go back to the days when you had only three sets of clothes? And those clothes were washed twice a year? Who invented this hygiene crap that all of us subscribe to?

Soapbox Item #2
The school sent home a letter the other day complaining about Yahoo #1's excessive attendance issues. They sent me a Compulsory Education Violation.  Since the beginning of the year, he's missed 6 days and had two tardies. The tardies were because of his piano lesson. This piano lesson is every Thursday at 8:30am. For some reason, the school thinks it's okay to change the school starting time from 9:15 to 8:00 on four days a year. Seriously makes my skin crawl. So, you know, the piano lesson is important. On those two Thursdays a year, Yahoo #1 has the piano lesson and I take him to school late. With a note.  The school has been in session three terms.  On average, the Yahoo has missed 2 days per term.

Now here's the soap box part. The reason the school is complaining is because three of those absences were "unexcused" -- meaning, I didn't call the school and say "the Yahoo is staying home today for ...."  It's against the law for me to keep my child home from school unexcused.  Here's the juicy parts from the letter:

"While this may not seem serious at this time, if allowed to continue, it could adversely affect your child's education.  It is your responsibility to make sure that your student is at school, on time, everyday.  If your student is not able to be at school you are required by law to offer an excuse for their absences.

"So I know you understand the seriousness of this problem and your willingness to work with us to correct it, please return this letter to me with your signature."

Does that sound like a threat to you?  They're treating me like a crack whore who can't get their kids to school.  Next thing you know, they're going to fine us for not having Yahoo #2 in glasses before school started.

Soapbox Item #3
This week I have a new appreciation for my windowless basement office.  Why?  Because it has no water cooler.  Which means other employees will not gather around it and hash out the Health Care.  I've heard of many heated arguments (at the work place) over Health Care Reform.  So you disagree.  Big deal.  Get over it and be friends. 

Soapbox Item #4
Speaking of health care, I will say this:  I do not appreciate force -- by any means, and it appears as though we'll be forced to buy health care. I don't like to be forced. For the greater good, for patriotism, blah blah blah. Plain and simple, I don't liked to be forced to do ANYTHING. So maybe now you know kinda where I stand on health care.

Massachusetts, with the help of one Mitt Romney, has already jumped on the health-care-by-force bandwagon. For giggles, I've included a look at the lovely MA-1099-HC that all Mass residents are required to file -- you know, to prove they have insurance. Soon, we'll all get to file one just like it! Aren't you glad! He who files the most tax forms wins!!!

(Go ahead... click it.  You know you wan to.)


Soapbox Item #5
I just hit the publish post button on accident. Before I was finished. Dang. Nothing's worse that premature publish posting.

Soapbox Item #6
The IRS has too many forms -- 1130 forms (and instructions) to be exact. Go look for yourself:  Click here.

Soapbox Item #7
Virus people should be strung up and used as wolf bate.  Spouse sent me this article today.  Evidently there's a company in the Ukraine that makes viruses.  It's a company -- not some geek in a basement.  This company has an H.R. department, vacation and bonuses.  They have employee picnics and parties.  This particular company creates viral stuff called Scareware.  Scareware infects the machine with nesting dialogs that inform the user that they've been infected with a virus, then sends the user to a dialog so as they can "purchase" a tool to remove it.  User enters credit card, company makes millions.

Not cool.

I've often wondered if thee virus removal companies (and you know who you are -- I say it like that because I have friends and whatnot who work for the big two), have their hands in the virus-makin' business. Maybe, quite possibly, the virus removal companies ensure product demand and longevity by finding a way to infiltrate the world with viruses.  Think about it!?  What if there are no more viruses?  We lose jobs.

Soapbox #8
I tried a new Yoga studio today.  It was rad.  Get a load of me calling Yoga rad.  I might be in trouble for calling Yoga rad.  The Hindi Gods of Yogini might form an alliance against me until I perform a Puja.

Today, I was so pleased to see (hear) that the instructor shut her mouth during the Savasana.  I get on my soap box about it being quiet during the Savasana.  I cannot relax with some chick jabbering at me.  And for heaven sakes, don't tell me when and when not to breath.

Soapbox finished.  I suppose I'll get down now.  Sigh.

-

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Two Rules Of Early Morning Running

There are two rules of early morning running.  They are:
  1. Make sure stopped cars see you when entering an intersection.
  2. Avoid the paper boy.
On my run this morning, we had a near-miss experience that involved both rules.

Let's begin with rule number one.  When running about streets that cars consider their own, each runner is responsible for not getting hit.  In a perfect world, the drivers of these cars would be responsible for not hitting the runner - but it is never worth the risk to assume any driver is looking for runners.  For this reason, runners and pedestrians must be responsible for establishing eye contact with anyone stopped before entering an intersection.  Never, never, never, assume that a driver sees you.

Rule number two is a bit more random.  Early morning is paper delivery time.  I have found that the person delivering these papers is a dangerous one.  That paper delivery person must be avoided at all costs.  Does anyone out there know what I mean?  The Paper Person drives fast.  And always on the wrong side of the road.  Or in a zig-zag formation.  All lights are on in this Paper Person's vehicle.  Paper Person is usually looking down as if reading something - the paper route, perhaps.  That Paper Person's eyes are rarely looking at the street for other cars, let alone people running.

Wednesday mornings are speed work mornings.  The gang and I met at 4:55 for two miles then a 4 mile tempo.  (A tempo run is one in which you run fast but not all-out fast.  This particular tempo had a 15k to half marathon pace.)  There were three of us up front today (that's me bragging about being up front, by the way.  But I won't mention that the fast people were recovering from races and that's why I was up front.)

Radracer and I were doing our own version of speedy gonzales.  We were cruising down 400 West in Lindon.  There isn't a lot of traffic around those parts in the way early morning, so things were going nicely.  Until.  Until we approached an intersection wherein a car was coming up the hill.  That car had a stop sign.

We kept running.  I decided to swing out wide, so that when the car stopped, he/she would be able to see us.   I reasoned that once the car stopped, we'd be more than half-way through the intersection.

Except the car didn't stop.  He blew right through stop sign - dome lights on and reading something in his lap.  Classic Paper Boy.  That Boy missed hitting Rad by only a foot and missed me by three or so.  And because the Boy had his eyes in his lap, he didn't even know we were there!

Meanwhile, two houses up on the opposite side of the street, a police officer was parked and half-asleep.  Outnback ran past the officer's window and startled the poor cop just in time for the cop to witness the near auto-pedestrian collision.  Mr. Police Officer had that Paper Boy pulled over quicker than you can say What The Hell?!

Made me think of another near-miss.  We all spent the rest of the run being more grateful than normal.

Here's a diagram just in case I totally confused you.  (I offer my diagram services if any of you are interested.)

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tuesday Tune vol 33 - I Can See Clearly Now

Today's Tuesday Tune is brought to you by diopters.  Do you know the meaning of this word, diopters?  Until two weeks ago, I had never heard or knew the meaning of that word, diopters.

Evidently, diopters are used to measure how well you see.  Yahoo #2 is missing some diopters.  Many diopters.  Like minus 8 in one eye and  minus 6 in the other.  Yahoo #2 is very far-sighted.  How that kid could read is a miracle. 

On Wednesday of last week, the spectacles arrived.  At the inaugural application of said spectacles, the heavens sang us this song:

Grieg: Peer Gynt Suite #1, Op. 46 - 1. Morning

Serous!  It was just like the cartoons.

Since the dawn of Yahoo #2's spectacledom, things around here have changed quite a bit.  He reads stuff - all the time.  He looks at letters.  He looks at his homework.  (What is with this homework business in Kindergarten, by the way?) He watches TV without pulling the corners of his eyes out. He skis faster. He came inside from playing the other day with exclamations of "There are birds in the trees!"  He tinkers on the piano.  Before spectacles, the piano was one giant mass of black and white.  Now he can see individual keys!  This means the boy gets piano lessons.  Lucky, lucky boy.

And so it is, on this Tuesday Tune vol 33, that I present our new theme song:

I Can See Clearly Now - Johnny Nash


With this new addition to the family, I figured some pictures were in order:

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Also decided to get the Fish-Eye out (I say this like the Fish-Eye gets put away!)  The Fish-Eye and glasses go together nicely:

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Advanced Marathoning



Advanced Marathoning, Second Edition
by Pete Pfitzinger and Scott Douglas

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Every year, for the last three years, I have cracked open this Advanced Marathoning book to read it from cover to cover. You'd think reading it once would be enough. But no. Some of us are dense. And need many reminders.

This book is a great book for anyone who wishes to train for and run a marathon. It's also a great book for those who want to crank their marathon training up a notch. The authors, Pfitzinger and Douglas present a good balance. Pfitzinger is a former U.S. Olympic Marathoner who ran for a living.  This means he did nothing but run, eat and sleep. Douglas, on the other hand, was a competitive athlete who maintained a 40-hour a week job. Since most of us have obligations that keep us from running 20 miles and napping three hours each day, this book presents training plans that are flexible and accommodating to many lifestyles.

I have the first edition of this book. It's great but there are a few changes in the training plans offered in the second edition that made me think it was time to up my edition. I just finished reading this newly improved Advanced Marathoning. New for the second edition, the authors have added Marathon Pace Miles during long runs that weren't included in originally. They say practice makes perfect. Practicing your predicted marathon pace will produce a potential marathon at that pace.

At the end of the book, there's a section that houses nothing but training plans.  They offer plans with speed work and weekly mileage of 55, 70, 85 and more than 85.  Each of those mileage classifications has a 12, 18 or 24 week training plan.

The best chapter in the book, however, is Chapter 3: Balancing Training and Recovery.  This is where I learned that training won't do you diddly unless you learn how to recover and recover well.

Advanced Marathoning is the marathoner's cookbook.

-

Friday, March 19, 2010

Climactic Concentration

Whenever I open a jar of Nutella, and grab a giant spoonful of it's succulent goodness, I always ask, "Why is it, dearest beloved Nutella, that The Sex cannot be as good as you?"  It's true.  I always ask that.  And now you all can feel bad for Spouse because he holds a close second to Nutella.  But only to Nutella, so that should count for something, right? 

There are several things that the Big Dirty and Nutella have in common.  Both seem forbidden to one degree or another, both have an airy sense of taboo, both cannot be enjoyed openly and in public without social ramifications, both produce pleasure, and last but not least, both involve nuts.

There is one element in particular, however, that separates Nutella from The Sex.  This fundamental ingredient, not necessary for Nutella, but imperative for sexual enjoyment, is.... drum roll please... ConcentrationThe Sex requires Concentration; Nutella does not.

I might be alone in this arena of  The Sex needing the Concentration.  Heaven knows that this particular instance would not be the first in which I was a few ticks shy of the general populace.  But I'm here to suggest - admit, even - that when it comes to relations, friction alone is not enough.  Some of us must Concentrate to experience the Joy.

The Joy of Nuttella requires no Concentration.  It doesn't even require a spoon!

For giggles, let's pretend that I'm right about this Concentration Theory - that most women have the same issue.  You can now see - dearest gentlemen attached to women via matrimony - why it is that your woman wants it "lights-out" the minute her precious head hits the pillow.  That bed is soft.  That bed is warm.  That bed screams, "Just lay here with me and be dumb!  Lay here with me and think about nothing!  Lay here with me and be blank like unto the blankets!"

The woman has impregnated the day with Concentration.  The woman has used up her Concentrating powers by telling the children the same instructions twelve times over; by running errands, by attending to the needs of others and by mustering patience.  When it's 10:30 in the pm, and the woman is finally able to relax, the last thing the woman wants to do is Concentrate.  But the man insists.  And turns on the Barry White.

And so it is, dear Gents, that I issue a challenge.  I challenge you all to experience copulation through Concentration.  The next time you "mount that saddle" and "go to town," derive in memory, the Quadratic Equation. Then you might come to know the difficulties of carnal concentration.

Either that or hand your love a jar of Nutella.  She won't even know you're there.

-

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Shuffle Shopping

I have been shopping for Shuffles.  IPod Shuffles, that is.  Commonly referred to (by me) as mePod Shuffles. Shuffles are necessary for recreating and/or exercising (if doing so with music) because they're small, lightweight and do not bounce.  An 80 gig mePod on a run will never fly.

Right now, I have a perfectly good 'n working 2nd generation mePod Shuffle.  I use it often.  I'm hard on my Shuffles though and sense that the end is drawing nigh for my current Shuffle.
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Exhibit A: 2nd generation mePod Shuffle
(In green for St. Patrick's Day)

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Exhibit B:  3rd generation mePod Shuffle with proprietary headphones:
(Also in green for St. Patrick's Day)  

It has come to my attention, however, that I might need to stock up on 2nd generation Shuffles before my current one dies, while supplies last.  Why?  Because the new and "improved" 3rd generation mePod Shuffles must be used with Apple's proprietary headphones.

This is betty, betty bad.

Apple headphones are not good.  Apple headphones are the pits.  This is what I do with Apple's headphones:

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Exhibit C: Feeding Headphones to Pound Hound

After I spent a few minutes looking for a replacement 2nd generation Shuffle, it became quite clear that the Invisible Hand is armed and in action within the current Shuffle scene.  Supply and demand has valued a 1GB, 2nd generation, refurbished Shuffle at twice as much as a 2GB, 3rd generation brand-spanking-new Shuffle.  This means you will pay more for less with the old and pay less for more with the new.

I hope Apple is paying attention.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Answer Is...

Go!




P.S. I love technology.

Tuesday Tune vol 32 - Should I Stay Or Should I Go

Today's Tuesday Tune is Should I Stay Or Should I Go - The Clash.

Today is Tuesday March 16, 2010.  (Notice that I got the date right this time.)  Due to an arranged playgroup with my kindergarten Yahoo, I have the whole day to myself.  The WHOLE DAY! (At least until 3:30.) Do you have any idea how big it is to have the Whole Day?  (At least until 3:30.)  Trust me.  It's a big deal.

Last night, I was pumped and ready to spend the day skiing.  This morning?  Not so much.  I'm wondering if it's worth the effort.  I'm wondering if it's worth packing up the gear and whatnot.  I'm wondering if the drive will be enjoyable and if the mePod is ready.  I'm wondering if the snow will be soft.  It's 17 degrees at the resorts right now after being in the high 40s yesterday.  I like spring skiing as long as it's soft.  If it's hard and frozen, I play the Utah spoiled brat and do something else.   I'm also having reservations about spending the day alone.  I grew up skiing alone and sometimes prefer it.  Daddy worked at a ski resort, so I'd ride to work him, ski, then ride home with him.  (Alone, of course, because this is Utah and not many kids ski outside of the ski towns.  And that's why I grew up skiing alone.  I won't mention that I skied alone because I was weird - 'cause that's the real reason that I grew up skiing alone.) This year, however, I'm not enjoying the alone thing as much as normal.

What could I do if I don't go?  Who knows.  Prolly work.  And Read.  And run a few miles.  And clean something (ewe!)

Here's the deal.  I'm going to listen to The Clash's Should I Stay Or Should I Go, then decide.

Monday, March 15, 2010

In The Soup Now

Dear Rabidrunner,

We have received your application for the ING New York City Marathon 2010.

Your entry number is 555444. Please include this number and your name in any correspondence pertaining to the marathon. To check your status, or to update/change your personal information, click here and enter the username and password that you created within the application.

For more information about the ING New York City Marathon, please visit ingnycmarathon.org.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Brobdingnagian Decision

I have a big decision to make today.  Big, big, BIG.  So big is this decision, that it has been in the running for two straight months.  I have suffered two straight months of gut-rolling, anxiety-driven angst over this particular decision's ifs, whens, and butts.  I've lost sleep over this decision.  I've had trouble doing all of the individual duties in my normal life. 

Trouble doing my duties.

What, pray tell, is this brobdingnagian decision, that carries the weight of twelve elephants?  Is it turmoil over a new job?  Is it choosing to have or not have another child?  Are we considering that ixnay-on-the-ildrenchay should be made permanent?  By removing a few millimeters of a tube or two in Spouse or myself?  Are we considering a move to a new home or city?  To Colorado or beyond?  Well, no.  It's none of that.  The decision, that must be made by midnight tonight (technically it's midnight tomorrow night, but we're on-time-is-early kind of people) is:

Should I, or should I not, run the New York City Marathon.

I'll bet you thought I was going to reveal and discuss something juicy, yes? Running the New York City Marathon is quite a juicy decision; it requires juice and produces juice.  But I'm sure it lacks the drama most of you were hoping for.  Sorry.  I'm an open book, but not that openSome things - like whether Spouse or myself should be removed from the gene pool - are sacred.  (Not that we're thinking about that kind of business anyway - it was just an example of things that prolly shouldn't be discussed on the rabidrunner blog.)

Now back to that dang marathon.  Why the trepidation?  Why the introspection?  Why the deliberation?  Why all of these ations?

Money.

It's a dreadful drag that the evil entity we moniker "money" gets to determine our decisions.  I know there are many people out there who say, "money doesn't matter."  And to this I say, "Bah! Money matters. Everywhere!"  Think of the last time you made a decision where money wasn't the pulsating member* atop your list of influential variables.  Think.  Can you remember one?  I'm speaking of decisions of consequence, not decisions like which socks to wear each morning.  If you are able to remember such a situation, where money wasn't the deciding factor, please do share so as I can learn.  And stuff.

Let's break down that decision, shall we? 

First and foremost, New York City ain't cheap.  Marathon week is exponential for expenses in that Apple we call the Big One.  Hotels cost much more than normal and airfare prolly does too.

Second and subsequent, blowing all that cash on a dumb race is selfish.  Spouse needs a bike.  He just does.  He's been riding his "fast" Voodoo for years and its time for an upgrade.  I should forgo my one-day, magical-marathon dream so as Spouse can cycle something fancy for four or more days in each of his weeks.

'Sides.  I've been to India.  And Paris.  That should be enough me-me-me for a while.  Yes? 

Third and tertiary, we need a new couch.  Or couches, whatever.  Traditionally, I'm not the kind of person who will exchange fun money for furniture money (for fun is unmatched by anything else - furniture included.)  But have you seen our couches?  They are so bad I won't even post a picture.  Traditionally, I'm not one who will exchange an ugly photo that tells a story for a pretty photo that doesn't tell a story.  But have you seen our couches...?  I mean, have you seen our couches!? 

Fourth and final, I haven't decided who to go with or even if I have someone to go with.  Spouse will go because he's 80% obligated.  Even admitted so last night.  I said, "I know you'll go because you're 80% obligated.  But would you want to go if you weren't 80% obligated?"  He said, "It's not my first choice" - which is Spouse Speak for "no."  If Spouse goes, the Yahoos will go as well.  You can see from First and Foremost (above) that the Big Apple times four is an Apple Orchard.  Organic, of course.

Incidentally, the Yahoos want to see New York City. This is is a weighty factor to consider when deciding whether to plant that Organic Apple Orchard.  They are motivated by something to do something!  That in itself might be worth the cash.


On a side-note, the lovely Megan posted today!  She mentioned that it's imbecile to toot your I-don't-take-money-for-advertising-on-my-blog horn.  (I'm a fawning sycophant** when it comes to Megan and I do what she says.  Except when we disagree -  then we agree to disagree. We can be so very adult that way.)  It never occurred to me, however, that someone would actually turn down cash for nonsense, let alone brag that they turned down cash for nonsense.  Cash for nonsense is the best kind of cash, right?

I'm here to brag that I have never been offered any amount of trinket, cash or other such compensation for my blog.  But had I been offered trinkets, cash or other such compensation, you bet your bright ass I'd take it and brag about getting it.

So, I'm a runner of mediocre positioning.  I have eight followers who run.  Does anyone have a product I can pimp so as to earn my way to the New York?  Better hurry, I only have 11 hours and 59 minutes. 

(Speaking of my eight followers who run, note that two of them are people I actually run with.  Maybe not even two!  I run with over fifteen people on a regular basis!  I guess that means they get enough of me on the run... duh.  Here I was, about to complain about my so-called running buddies, who don't care enough about me to read the blog, when it occurred to me that they get enough of me on the run.  Oh well.)



*Thanks, Winder, for the pulsating member addition.
**Megan gets credit for fawning sycophant.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Mistakes Were Made! (But Not By Me...)

The Winder lent me a book last week.  She called me on the phone, told me the title, and asked if I wanted to borrow it.  I said, "why sure, send it over." After receiving the book, I opened it and read the first page only to discover that I had already read that book.  Recently too.  I read the book and had immediately forgotten it.

For this reason, I will now do book reports.  When I finish a book, I'm going to post a report here.  Did you like book reports in school?  I loved the book reports.  I wish I could get a job doing book reports. 


Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me):
Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts
by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson

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First, let me tell you how I ended up reading this one.  I take issue when people play the blame game.  I also believe that the world lacks accountability.  Think about it... how often do you hear someone say, "Oops!  I screwed up"?  Not very often.  So one day Ryan left a comment on one of my posts suggesting that I read this Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) book.  I jumped all over that one.  Especially since Amazon had it for $4.97 and I'm an Amazon Prime member and get free two-day shipping.  That Amazon Prime business is kinda worth it, by the way.


(If Ryan had a blog, I'd link to it, but Ryan has no blog.  He's that smart and witty blogless dude from San Diego who's little brother grew up with the Winder's husband and who found us all because of an airplane ride wherein he sat next to Megan.  Weird, huh?!  This planet is so very small.)

Here's what I learned from this book:

- Humans justify.  They make a decision.  And after they make a decision they make all sorts of other decisions that justify the first decision.  You and I want to feel good about the decisions we make.  If you make a decision, and you find yourself doubting that decision, your actions will generally turn to justification instead of looking at the decision for a mistake.  Would you care for an example?

Let's say I go out and buy this awesome vehicle - a Porsche Cayman.  The sticker price on a Cayman S is 61,500 - a smokin' deal for a Porsche.  But for me and my family, the only thing dumber than buying a Cayman S would be the purchase of a Cayman Island.  Buying a Cayman S would be a bad decision and a very bad mistake.  Now, instead of looking at the car and proclaiming loudly that, "I totally screwed up," I would begin to justify my decision.  First, I'd go around telling you that I got "a great deal on it" and that "the dealership was trying to get rid of 'em all and gave it to me for almost nothing."  After I had made an effort at convincing everyone that I got a great deal on the car, I'd immediately try to get anyone, someone, everyone, to buy a Cayman too.  'Cause if all of you buy a Cayman S, then surely I made the right decision.

"Our efforts at self-justification are all designed to serve our need to feel good about what we have done, what we believe, and who we are." Page 39.

In regards to this justification stuff, people end up justifying themselves into corruption.  Want an example?  Politicians.  They start out with the best intentions and they want to make principled decisions for our country, but slowly, like sweet molasses, those politicians just lose it.  On page 37, the book says, "How do you get an honest man to lose his ethical compass?  You get him to take one step at a time, and self-justification will do the rest."  And on page 38, it says: "All of us, to preserve our belief that we are smart, will occasionally do dumb things.  We can't help it.  We are wired that way.  But this does not mean that we are doomed to keep striving to justify our actions after the fact.  A richer understanding of how and why our minds work as they do is the first step toward breaking the self-justification habit.  And that, in turn, requires us to be more mindful of our behavior and the reasons for our choices.  It takes time, self-reflection, and willingness."

After I read that last little bit, it dawned on me that the people who need this book the most will never read it!  Funny, huh?  Those justifying fools will justify their way out of any sort of self help!

Here's more of what I learned:

- People are biased.  Period.  You and I have made our decisions and cannot be coerced to either side of that decision.  This is precisely why debates over politics turn heated.  You have picked your position.  Your opponent has picked their decision.  Neither of you will switch, so save your breath and agree that you disagree.  I've also learned that once you/I make a decision, we only see facts that support that decision.  Now I laugh in the general direction of anyone who claims to be unbiased.

- Memories are made to justify.  When you and I remember something, we stamp that memory in our brain so as to justify.  When you see something, you see it favorably - to support a belief or decision made.  The human mind will remember stuff in a way that supports what you want to remember, not necessarily what really happened.  For this reason,  a person's memory is as reliable as quicksand.  Page 93 says, "False memories allow us to forgive ourselves and justify our mistakes, but sometimes at a high price: an inability to take responsibility for our lives.  An appreciation of the distortions of memory, a realization that even deeply felt memories might be wrong, might encourage people to hold their memories more lightly, to drop the certainty that their memories are always accurate, and to let go of the appealing impulse to use the past to justify problems of the present.  If we are to be careful about what we wish for because it might come true, we must also be careful which memories we select to justify our lives, because then we will have to live by them."

Not everyone, however, remembers events inaccurately to support their cause and/or story.  "Every once in a while someone steps forward to speak up for truth, even when the truth gets in the way of a good, self-justifying story.  It's not easy, because it means taking a fresh, skeptical look at the comforting memory we have lived by, scrutinizing it from every angle for its plausibility, and, no matter how great the ensuing dissonance, letting go of it."


- From now on, I will look sideways at scientific research.  I'm biased about people being biased.  This means I think those performing research have decided beforehand what they want to find.  There are several examples in the book about studies in the real world that began with bias.  One such study was one proclaiming rather loudly that Autism was a direct result of immunizations.  I'm not going to go into it here, however.  There's a whole chapter in the book about science and how it's tainted by cash and biased variables.


- All sorts of justification transpires in matrimony.  I also learned that more marriages would make it if we'd all learn to give the benefit of the doubt; if we'd all learn to overlook trivialities. We make decisions and judgments about our spouses.  And once we have made a decision about them, whether that decision be positive or negative, we only see actions and whatnot that support that decision.  This means that once you decide your beloved Spouse squeezes toothpaste incorrectly, you won't see it when he/she squeezes the toothpaste correctly.

Now that I've listed what the book taught me, here's he paragraph where I summarize and interpret:  I believe the world would be a better place if those making the mistakes (everyone) would say, "Mistakes were made.  By me!"  However, I don't believe our world is a forgiving world.  In order for the world to start admitting mistakes, that same world needs to start forgiving.

How's that for a new chicken or egg metaphor? 

    Wednesday, March 10, 2010

    Spectacles


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    Tuesday, March 09, 2010

    First Nephi, Chapter 8, Verse 23

    First Nephi, Chapter 8, Verse 23
    "And it came to pass that there arose a mist of darkness; yea, even an exceedingly great mist of darkness, insomuch that they who had commenced in the path did lose their way, that they wandered off and were lost."

    So... like, Lost is on, in like, three hours.  It's gonna be rad.  And since I have a scripture for the commencement of tonight's televised proceedings, I'm gonna call it Family Home Evening.

    Tuesday Tune vol 31 - Pizza Day

    All right everyone, pay attention.  Raise your hand if you love Ween!  Great job boys and girls! Look at all of those Ween lovers out there! Just look at you all.  You look so very nice.

    Today's Tuesday Tune is Someday - Ween and here's why:  Tuesday is Pizza Day at the Yahoo's school. Pizza Day is the only day Yahoo #1 has a guaranteed school lunch. It's a guaranteed school lunch day because I remove my Mean-As-Hell-Medusa Mask and send him to school without a home-lunch.  One day a week - on Pizza Day Tuesday - Yahoo #1 gets to eat school lunch and not Medusa Mom's home-lunch.

    Medusa Mom's yucky home-lunch is amply furnished with a sandwich on home made wheat bread, long (not baby) carrots and chips imported from India (via rabidrunner backpack.  Indian chips are the best on the planet.  You can trust me on this one because I have been all over the planet now and have had chips from all over that same planet.)  Medusa Mom's home-lunch also has a bite size snickers bar or some other delicious delectable.

    Only Mean-As-Hell-Medusa Moms send a home-made lunch.  Nice Moms buy school lunch.  The Greek Mythology books even say so. On page 31.  "Medusa made her offspring eat a home-made lunch.  If the little brats complained, she would turn them to stone."

    For the record, there are many mornings in the which Medusa Mom doesn't have her act together or is frazzled more than normal.  On these mornings, Medusa Mom morphs into Nice Mom and Yahoo #1 gets whatever pickled and preserved entrée the elementary café happens to be serving.  Sometimes I think the Yahoos get me frazzled on purpose so as to escape the home lunch.

    So on Tuesday mornings, Yahoo #1 is excited to go to school (for Pizza Day) and we sing.  On Tuesday mornings, we sing the lyrics from Ween's Someday song because it says:  "Tuesday - is pizza day."

    It's so cute when an eight-your-old sings Ween, isn't it?  So very cute.  Now don't you all go teaching him the lyrics to Piss Up A Rope because that will not be cute in the slightest.  And this means you, specifically, Vera.  (She's been known to frequent Ween and teach the Yahoos things.  Also notice that I didn't provide you with a link to Ween's Piss Up A Rope.  You're on your own with that one.)

    Oh and while we're on the subject of Vera - she's a Granny now!  Vera's daughter Ellvie had a bouncing baby Digby last week.  We're all so very thrilled.  It's weird when your friends become grandparents, isn't it?  Weird.


    Here's the Someday lyrics, so as you can sing along too!  On Pizza Day!  (What is with me and the excess of exclamation points lately!?)

    You will hear me sing a love song
    One day
    I'll find a girl to call my own

    Bringing it all together
    Doing it on my own
    Walking hand in hand like lovers

    And if you wished upon the moon
    Then it maybe one day soon

    Sunday
    Monday
    Tuesday - is pizza day

    Bringing it all together
    Doing it on my own
    Walking hand and hand like lovers

    And if you wished upon the moon
    Then it maybe one day soon

    Monday, March 08, 2010

    Myriad of Felicitations

    I like using felicitation because it makes me feel like Jane Austen.  There are certain words I use to bring out my inner classic author.  All of us - that includes you and me - have an inner classic author just waiting to come out.  For example, when I use "in the which", it brings out my inner Shakespeare and when I use "inconceivable," it brings out my inner William Goldman.

    Anyway.

    After my Myriad of Frustrations day, I figured I should follow it up with a Myriad of Felicitations.  Felicitation is the opposite of Frustration.  Just so you know.

    Felicitation #1
    Saturday was Yahoo #1's piano festival and wouldn't you know - it's appointed time was right in the middle of the dang day.  I grumble at any schedulings that coincide with the middle of a Saturday.  Incidentally, it turned out to be a great day because Spouse and I each took the day to spend one-on-one time with each of the Yahoos.  I spent the day with Yahoo #1 and Spouse spent the day with Yahoo #2.  Being as kindergarten is half day, Yahoo #2 and I get lots of alone time.  Yahoo #1 and I don't ever spend any time alone.  It was wonderful - like we were getting to know each other all over again.  Isn't there a song in there somewhere?  Getting to you know.  Getting to know all - about you.

    Felecitation #2
    My sister Opree has landed a leading role in an Opera with The Utah Opera Company.  It's Puccini's Suor Angelica and you can get your tickets here.  What are the odds of that?  A sister named Opree that sings in a real Opera!  Who would have known.  If you're nice I'll get you an autograph. 

    Felecitation #3
    I made cookies today.  Oatmeal chocolate chip.

    Felicitation #4
    It's March.  All of the rude taxpayers are done with their taxes.  Scientific research shows that the mean, rude and vulgar file their taxes in February while the nice and mannerly file their taxes is March.

    When did you file your taxes?  Hmmm?  And what kind of person does that make you?

    Felicitation #5
    Marathon training is going rather smoothly.  The warmer weather has made it easier to run faster and longer.  Three weeks down, nine to go...

    Felicitation #6
    Jeff Bridges won an Oscar last night.  As usual I'm reporting on an event I didn't attend or watch.  I did not see Jeffie's Oscar movie either, but I believe he should have earned an Oscar in 1998 for his performance of The Dude.

    Friday, March 05, 2010

    Myriad of Frustrations (Wherein a Myriad = 5)

    I gots myself a myriad of frustrations.  

    Sadly, I cannot blame the PMS Avenger on this one because the timing just ain't right.  Timing is everything when it comes to the super power of PMS Avenging.  That and the moon and the horrormones.  These days, however, I'm into taking full responsibility for my actions (thanks to Ryan and his book recommendation - full report coming soon.)  So today, instead of blaming the PMS Avenging alter ego, I must look my frustrations straight in the eyes and tell them they exist all because of me and my bitchiness.  

    My inability to blame the PMS is unfortunate because I would really like to stamp this post with the PMS Avenger label.  Bummer.  Accountability sucks!  Already!  And we're just beginning!

    Anyway, as I was sitting here looking at my crappy day, and taking full responsibility for my crappy day in the process, I figured the best way to stare down these frustrations would be to list them here.  That way the posterity and whatnot can see how bitchy I was on May 5, 2010.

    I can't wait to read this to my grandkids!

    Incidentally, this one will have a superabundance of supererogatory and supervacaneous exclamation points!  It's gonna be super! But don't call the exclamation point police on my for superseding my exclamatory quota.


    Frustration #1
    It snowed like crazy last night.  One might think that the frustration over a giant dump might be a result of having to drive in the snow, shovel the snow and other such hassles.  But no.  I wanted to go ski in the snow - on the snow?  Whatever.  One powder day is all I ask of this year, ONE!  Remember the days when I was asking for 15 powder days a year?  Yeah, those are gone now.  I just want ONE.

    Now, why wouldn't I be able to partake of the the superabundance and supererogatory and supervacaneous snow?  Glad you asked.  Because now I get to bitch about...

    Frustration #2
    The Big O is dirty word.  Dirty, dirty, dirty!  It stands for OBLIGATION.  Obligation is the worst of all the four (times 2.5) letter words.  Do you ever step back, look at your poor obligated life and think, "I'm obligated!  To the gills!  To the hilt!  To the max! And I cannot think of any more idiot idioms to add to it!"

    Honestly.  How did I get here?  With all this obligation?  And what's worse...

    Frustration #3
    Why is it that people insist on pouring molten lavanous obligation all over my Saturdays?  People!  Saturdays are for R-E-C-R-E-A-T-I-N-G!  Saturdays are not for working, baptisms, weddings, baby showers, funerals, or piano festivals.  Saturdays are for recreating. If obligation continues to seep into my sportly Saturdays, the steadfastness of my Sundays will most definitely sizzle.

    Speaking of sizzle, I'm hungry.

    Frustration #4
    I'm hungry.

    Frustration #5
    The Yahoos lack motivation.  They are motivated by nothing to do nothing.  Nothing!  How do I make my kids become self-motivated individuals who strive for bigger and better, fun and frolic?  Funny, huh? YOU GET OVER HERE, BOY! AND YOU BE SELF-MOTIVATED OR I'LL FEED YOU TO BALKANS!  Is being fed to the Balkans bad?  I should prolly do my research before issuing a threat.  Yes?

    But seriously, folks.  The Yahoos don't want to do anything.  Doesn't matter if it's fun or work - they complain.  What do I do?  Squash 'em into submissive self-motivation?  Help!

    While we are on the subject of self-motivation, let's delve into that a bit deeper, shall we?  The key ingredient of self-motivation, is self.  I assume we all agree about that.  Self-motivation must come from the internal self and not from the external parents.

    Being as Spouse and I began to perpetuate our gene pool later in life, most of our friends have kids that are older.  And by older, I mean most of our friends have kids old enough to get grades that count.  Some of them, even, have kids with a 4.0 cumulative in their senior year of high school!  Four point oh!

    During one conversation with Parent of 4.0 Cumulative Kid, I asked, "How do you do it?  How do you raise kids that want to work hard and get good grades?"  I questioned Parent of 4.0 Cumulative Kid because I want our Yahoos to get good grades and subsequently qualify for full-ride college tuition.  And if they get full-ride tuition, then Spouse and I can burn their education bonds on stuff that will give instant gratification - like an Electra Glide for example. 

    No one wants to cash in the bonds, wait four years and hope that the sweet child of your'n ends up earning a living over it, right?  Right!  YOU know what I'm sayin'!

    Anyway, I'm talking to the friend about her kids and their awesome grades.  And whence I inquire about how the young ones are motivated to do so, she responds with, "We don't do anything!  They just do it on their own!  They're so wonderful!"  Note that the sentence is delivered with that sickening, sweet, my-kids-are-the-best-on-the-planet tone.

    I was taken a back with doom.  "Oh man.  We're screwed.  There will be no Electra Glide!  Our Yahoos are motivated by nothing to do nothing!" 

    Fast forward a year or so, and the friend and I are having a conversation.  And during this conversation she openly admits to forking over a Benjamin for every single A her kids get on their report card. (That's $100 an A for those of you like me who rarely see cash.)

    Rrrririiiighhhht... "They just do it on their own!"

    Now.  I'm not saying that bribing your kids for good grades is wrong.  In the long run, it might even cost you less if you pay for the As upfront as opposed to the associated fees that come with college.  What I am saying is that if you're bribing your kids, admit it.  Don't go tooting that my-kids-are-self-motivated bull.

    See?  I told you I was bitchy. 


    **Since I mentioned "PMS Avenger," I should be able to stamp it with the PMS Avenger label, right? 

    Wednesday, March 03, 2010

    Illogicality

    Did you know the English language lacks logic? It does.  Would you care for some examples?  How about, their there and they're, comb ('cause of the silent "b"), read and read (as in I read a book and will you read to me) and the list could go on and on.

    Yesterday, thanks to dug, I found the word.  I found the word that betrays all rules and regulations of any spelling rules and regulations left in the English language.  I found the most illogically horrendous word of them all.

    That word is Colonel.  As in Colonel Kurtz.

    See dug was going on about the horrors of some things, then he ended his post with "The horror, the horror."  Which got me all sorts of excited because little ol' me was quick enough to catch the Heart of Darkness  / Apocalypse Now reference.  Pleased as punch doesn't adequately describe how pleased I was with myself.  And because I was pleased as punch with myself, I most definately had to share a comment with mr. dug letting him know that I most assuredly caught his Heart of Darkness reference.

    So I wander on over to dug's little wordpress site to leave a comment.  For those of you who have read Heart of Darkness or have seen Apocalypse Now, you'll know that the Colonel Kurtz is the main wack-job in the paralleled fables.  For those of you who haven't read 'n seen, well then now you know that Colonel Kurtz is the main wack-job in the paralleled fables.  Anyhow, I was going to tell dug that Colonel Kurtz would agree with his aforementioned horrors.

    And then it hit me... Colonel?

    Colonel is pronounced kernal.  Do you see a freaking "r" in the word colonel?  Then why the hell is it pronounced with an "r"?  Someone help me make sense of this so that I can sleep tonight.

    ------------------------------
    Post post addition:
    Rachel, bless her heart, has answered the question.  However, she listed another word: answer (and why don't we pronounce the w?)  So now friends, why don't you list some more words that keep us up at night...

    Word nerds!  All of you!  (Or us, whatever.)

    Tuesday, March 02, 2010

    Tuesday Tune, vol 30 - Sexy Back

    Today's Tuesday Tune is Justin Timberlake's Sexy Back.  

    What exactly does this Bringing Sexy Back business mean? Did sexy ever leave? (I guess that depends on who you live with and more importantly who you know, uh...hum with.) That Justin Timberlake has demonstrated, rather precisely, what Bringing Sexy Back means.

    Ready?

    Sexy is funny.  Funny is sexy. You might be Ryan Reynolds or Jude Law or [insert current hip and attractive newt here] and be totally hot. But if you don't have a rockin' sense of humor, then you're an ugly dud.

    I have this joke, taken from a Christmas movie a while back that stars Jude Law and Jack Black.  It's one of those cheesy love stories where Jack Black and Jude Law find love and romance when they least expect it.  (What a novel concept for a romance flick, right?  Also notice that I refuse to look up the movie's title.)  From this movie, one can conclude that there are too categories of people: those who fancy Jack Black and those who fancy Jude Law.

    So which are you?  Jude Law or Jack Black?  For me, Jude Law is a dud. Not a funny bone in his body. Jack Black on the other hand? Oh yeaaah... sexy.  I'm having trouble finding its female counterpart.  Anyone?  Who's funny and who's hot?  Tina Fey verses Megan Fox?  Help me out here...

    Now back to Justin and his Sexy Back.  Until recently, I didn't find Justin Timberlake sexy at all.  That young Justin however, has proven himself funny, funny, funny.  And since funny is sexy, sexy, sexy, Justin is now sexy.  Justin has put his money where his mouth is by proving his sexyness via funnyness.

    See for your self.

    Beyonce and Justin on SNL

    Justin and Beep in a Box on SNL

    Justin's Immigrate Tale on SNL

    See?  Binging Sexy Back is Bringing Funny Back!

    Monday, March 01, 2010

    Family Business

    There's this button.  It's called the Publish Post button and it's part of the Blogger.  It's the button you press after you have typed up some words and pictures and whatnot.  This button is magic, for it takes your words and pictures and spews it all over the internet.  It's so very magic.  Like bubbles are magic, or alka seltzer or even Xanadu.  (Oh Xanadu!)

    Whenever I get ready to press that Publish Post button, two creatures of polar positioning perch themselves upon my person.  Actually, they're perched upon each of my shoulders, but there isn't a word for "shoulder" that starts with "p," so "person" it is.  These personages, positioned with precise polarity provide a paradox.

    On the left shoulder, the personage says, "Do it.  Do it!  Publish the Post!  This post is edgy and cool and all the hip kids are writing stuff like that these days!"  The personage on the right shoulder, however, is timid and shy and overly conscientious.  She's yelling, "No.  Don't!  You've gone too far.  You're sure to offend.  Remember your mother-in-law!"

    Yes.  Right-Side-Rachel reminds me to consider the mother-in-law (Mom of Spouse) while Left-side-Lucy encourages me to run amok. 

    Today, as I was cleaning the pantry (definitely not magic like Xanadu), Mom of Spouse phones.  During our conversation, she mentioned that she enjoys reading the rabidrunner blog.  "Oh dear," I said, and shrunk into the pantry.

    Don't get me wrong, I don't have anything to be ashamed of per se, but Spouse comes from a very respectful and appropriate upbringing.  The business of Spouse's Family is gentile.  They partake tea with their pinkies flexed and embroider pretty things in a parlor.

    Me, on the other hand?  I come from... uh... let's just say... I come from somewhere different.  Real different.  The business of my family created Left-Side-Lucy.  (And that Lucy is a tramp!)

    During our pantry clean-n-shrink parley, Mom of Spouse mentioned that she especially enjoys the India photos.  And so it is today, that you get an Indian Family Business - just for Mom of Spouse.  

    Rubber Balls

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    Incense
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    Bottled Water