Monday, February 23, 2009

the queen's prayers answered (from the past!)

Technically it's not Dr. Pepper tea, but you could toss a bag in there. Oh, and you pour over lemon because Dr. Pepper isn't acidic enough.


Saturday, February 21, 2009

Netflix: Charlotte Gray (2001)

Now with "spoilers"!

I'm usually not to much of a stickler in the "speaking English where it's not an English-speaking country" vein. I mean, it is kind of annoying and strange for every Roman to have a British accent, but I assume that's better than a bad faux-Italian accent. And maybe the producers don't know any good Italian actors and this isn't Fellini where we're dubbing audio on top of the actors random mouth-mushings (paraphrasing Day for Night here).

But, Charlotte Gray is supposed to be about a Scottish Londoner who becomes a member of British secret service and is assigned a mission with the French resistance. Wherein she continually compromises herself and others in an attempt to learn about her downed pilot boyfriend.

Generally, the non-native speaker spy is a good plot device. Will Vichy French peasants notice that she just dropped a "bullocks!" amidst discussion of baguettes? This possibility is entirely lost. I think they needed to do something to indicate to us when she was supposed to be in "French mode". Perhaps something like this:

Charlotte comes to find out there her boyfriend is dead. She's sad. Then, at the end, it turns out her boyfriend is alive. Apparently her disillusioning overlords had presented manipulated evidence to make her think he was dead so she was no longer pining whilst she was supposed to be spying. She like wasn't even happy when she saw him. Very, meh. She gives him a fist-bump, denies him the reunion hook-up and returns to France to be with her commie revolutionary. Hmm.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

tea time?

Any Brits on the line? Or any kind of tea expert? Not sure what the chances of 8 to 10 random people being British and/or a tea expert. I am thinking somewhere between 0 and no fucking way. At any rate, I digress.

I am looking for an alternative to my drug of choice (Diet Dr. Pepper). Typically at work I need an AM (and possible PM) caffeine timeout. This is when caffeine and I get together and have a little pow-wow about the dangers of napping under your desk. (George had an office, don't forget.) Caffeine doesn't have a huge effect on me, but it's enough of a boost to avoid sleepy, toddler-style eye rubbing. And that is for the best.

I do not enjoy coffee, finding it only drinkable in a state where it is coffee in name only. So, that leaves me with tea. I do enjoy tea, but I sometimes find it a little on the harsh side. Like if I drink it on an empty stomach it makes me a little nauseous.

SOOOOoooo, what's the best mild ("sensitive") tea for a whiny little girl? I look forward to your non-responses.


Friday, February 13, 2009


Last night at my rec basketball game, I got T’ed up, dogg. (A “T” or technical foul basically means you were being a jerk.) The situation was thus: the refs were old and idiotic. One guy was color-blind as he kept saying one team’s color and pointing in the direction opposite of that team’s offensive basket, which is precisely the opposite of what he's supposed to do. The other guy was older than Methuselah and kind of a prick. His attitude was, "I'm a hundred years old, so I'm allowed to be a moron!" What had I done to earn such discredit? I calmly said, “C’mon” to the ref after taking a forearm upside my beautiful, beautiful face. (Face is decidedly NOT part of the ball!) Ok, I didn’t calmly say it. I yelled it . . . loudly and there was anger in my voice, no doubt. But I didn’t swear! I wanted to, but I did not. That didn't matter as he quickly T'ed me up anyway. After the T, I went over and said (this time for serious calmly), “He hit me in the face.” Then Father Time said he’d toss me (oh no!) if I said “one more thing.” I just took a sub and got ready to go to the bar. But not before contemplatings literally saying "one more thing" and seeing if he could figure out the marginally clever defiance.

It was the most pissed I’ve been in a long time. I mean, I know the refs svck. It’s inevitable and understandable considering the level of play/circumstances. And years ago I got T’ed up regularly because I have an anger management issue when it comes to refs whose suckiness I disagree with. I’ve mellowed over time and most games I don’t say anything at all even though I know the refs will be bad. I’m usually mentally prepared. That's all well and good, but emotions can run high. And hey, they get 30 bucks a game apiece. Is it too much to ask that they remain conscious for the entirety of the contest? That they have a little pride in their craft? That they insist the nursing home give them their anti-crazy pills BEFORE tip-off?

Eventually I became laughing-it-off upset and then annoyed, with some regret stirred in. A couple of cold, delicious beers calmed me down and then I realized I also got my middle finger jammed by the other team (no foul call, naturally). This makes it difficult to type this important post and also difficult to flip off senile referees. And that is a tragedy.



Music is time travel. A song can remind you of a time long past, a forgotten love, a missed opportunity. You'll hear a song that makes you sad. Maybe you listened to it a lot after someone broke-up with you. Or maybe it's a song about someone dying in a fiery car crash while transporting a basketful of puppies. That's a smell you'll never forget.

The connection doesn't have to be ingrained. Sometimes a particular album will remind you of a particular year in college as you were particular about playing that album every day for 6 months. That kind of association is expected, Pavlovian. But sometimes the spark surprises. I must have been listening to Vampire Weekend when we found our home. Something in a song of theirs made me think of viewing the listing and thinking, "THAT'S where we're going to live." (Nevermind the fact that I had thought that a half-dozen other times about as many houses). It surprised me, how could so fleeting an experience make such a lasting impression?

The mind is a wondrous, joyous, complicated, maddening thing. We understand so little of our one true necessity. People feel sympathy for Dick Clark as a stroke has slurred and slowed his speech. But I say, if his mind's right, he has the very thing. For in there, 80 years of music and memory play.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

thought . . .

A lot of men are weary of holding newborn babies. I don't get it. Babies are too slow to bite you and even if you're holding a ninja newborn it wouldn't have any teeth yet.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

art of office: what would you do . . . if you were Jesus?

So I have this situation where this person is forever blaming me for everything that goes wrong. Like as soon as a problem crops up, Person will say, "Well, Roger said X, Y and Z." When, really I probably didn't say anything of the sort and maybe said "Q," which Person took to mean something else entirely. I would say it's on the level of "little sister" annoying. Little sisters are annoying, no doubt, but you usually just tune it out and that's that.

My only REAL problem with it is that Person tends to copy 18 different, non-essential, people on every email Person sends concerning these issues. The superfluous copy is an evil that should be eradicated. I understand there are certain micro-manager types that MUST be copied on every email originating from their underlings. But really, 90% of these people do not care and probably only want two emails of this type: 1. Something's broke. 2. That broken something is now fixed.

The project I was working with Person on is now over, mostly. Mostly because the occasional, non-beaten path issue will arise and Person immediately sends an email blaming me. For the most recent case, I have an old email that contradicts this claim directly. (I normally never keep emails, but I figured out early on that this might happen). Now I would think you all know me well enough to know that that doesn't exactly fill me with glee. I mean, I hate the GOTCHA! game. We're all on the same team here, right? (Yes, in this case.) Once something goes wrong it doesn't matter a whit whose fault it is, it just needs to be fixed. I should also mention that I kind of think Person does this out of kneejerk self-defense, rather than malice.

So, what would you do?

What did I do? Not much. I replied-to-partial to the people who need to know I'm not a complete moron. Then I sent an email directly to Person (copying no one) and soft-pedaled the fact that Person was full of hooey. Then we agreed on a solution where I don't have to do anything. Win-win in my book. Or just one win because Person = LOSE.


Friday, February 06, 2009

i don't always suck . . .

Just an fyi that I don't ALWAYS suck at goalie. Our last game on Wednesday we lost 3-2. They had a lot of shots (yes, more than 3) and I probably had one more save in me, but oh well. We missed the tie by thatmuch. Besides, hockey is fleeting. Where we really shine is the bar afterwards, good times, my friends, good times.


Tuesday, February 03, 2009

tip: Be a perfectionist at shit you're good at.

Really. It makes no sense for me to be meticulous with household fixer-upper jobs when I have absolutely no clue what I'm doing. I am currently proficient at changing the toilet paper roll. Though the exact mechanics of the paper towel roll have vexed me thus far.

I changed a doorknob/deadbolt in our house yesterday. This is not an 8-hour process, mind you, but when you so seldomly use your drill that you have to charge it twice during one project, things get bogged down.

I found myself taking way too much time trying to get things "just right." When really, I should have been focused on getting things "just locked." Right? That should be my goal. The main problem was that I have rusty metal hooks for hands when it comes to home repair AND the new knoblauch apparatus was throwing wide of first all day slightly different than the old. So I cobbled it together like a drunken shoesmith and now it looks like I allow children to play with power tools in my home, but I'll be damned if they didn't fix that door.

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Netflix: My First Mister (2001)

There are some movies on netflix that you hate so much that you can't wait to log back into your account and drop the one-star bomb on their sucky-movie asses.

Albert Brooks was rockin' a ridiculous looking porn/pedophile mustache, which was strangle a propos.

A whiny, angsty high school melodrama with pedophilic undertones.

And so, thus endeth the notes for my thoughts on My First Mister which I typed many, many months ago. For me, Albert Brooks at his best is forever traipsing at the precipice of annoying. In this case, he plummeted off the edge about 8 seconds into the movie Wile E. Coyote style with anvil in tow.

Netflix's summary (I doubt Netflix actually wrote the text) starts with, "An underappreciated comedy . . . " Truer words were never spoken.

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