Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

To all my friends and family,

I wish you the best for the new year. May it bring you love, happiness, and joy!

Be safe!


Sunday, December 30, 2007

Who the hell is Sherry Chow?

A few weeks ago, I received an invitation for a wedding. The wedding was for a friend that I've known since elementary school (thats over 20 years!) and his bride was someone that we went to high school with. Problem was - I had no clue who the bride was. I called my friends and they all seemed to remember her. She was in my year (the groom was a year older) and in band, and since I was on the flag team, we spent LOTS of time with the band.

Last night, the wedding arrives and off I go to see the happy couple get joined in holy matrimony. The wedding was on a yacht in the marina in Newport Beach, which was a new experience all in itself. I met up with my friend, Natalie (who totally remembered Sherry) at the marina and we walk up to the yacht to embark on our little voyage. While waiting to board, we started recognizing people. It was turning out to be a little high school reunion! There were about 12 people there from the past. One girl is still the same elitist bitch that she was all those years ago. Ahhh, memories.

Upon boarding the yacht (and I'm using yacht because I don't know if I should call it a ship or a boat), there was a security guard who needed to check our bags for weapons. What cracked me up about it was that he said "I have to check your bag, but only because the Coast Guard is watching. Ok, thats good - oh one more time he's looking again" Yes, I totally felt safe.

Finally get onboard and the champagne starts flowing. I kept telling Natalie not to let me scream 'So that's Sherry Chow!' at anytime during the night because she kept saying, you will totally remember who she is when you see her. We push off the dock and start our little 3 hour tour.

The ceremony begins with the procession of the wedding party. Here it comes - the big unveiling of the mysterious bride. She starts walking out and...I still don't have a clue! She's a beautiful bride and my friend looks extremely happy and proud. The ceremony ends and we are shuffled downstairs for appetizers while they take pictures and get the upstairs ready for dinner. After a bit, the bride and groom come down to mingle and we go up to them to offer our congratulations. Here is the moment that I was looking forward to and fearing at the same time. I was afraid she was going to see that I had no clue who she was. Nat and I go up and say hi and now her voice sounds familiar...but still nothing. Now, I'm standing there like an idiot because I can't remember her.

Dinner begins and they have a Polynesian floor show, which was lots of fun. After that, the bride and groom do their first dance. They dance to swing music and it was a nice change of tradition. For some reason, now is the time that I remember who Sherry is! Luckily I didn't scream out my revelation.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

My Ears! My Ears!

Time for a vote people - which one of these is most painful to watch and to hear?

Candidate #1
Premise: A garage band gets their big chance to perform in front of a live audience. They should have practiced a bit more.

Just...just...speechless. I mean - didn't anyone bother to tell them that they suck? Doesn't it look like the lead singer is walking around with his hand in his pocket like he's THAT good he doesn't even have to try. Didn't they audition for goodness sake? Is someone actually paying them? So many questions!

Candidate #2
Premise: A group of Pop Idol losers are asked to be the halftime show at a Futbol/Soccer match. Don't people know not to screw with soccer fans?!?!

The guy in the white shirt has to be my favorite - such enthusiasm! Let's not mention the audience reaction. The waving of the white flags are classic!

I think we all know who I'm voting for.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas Day Movie Marathon

Christmas has come and gone - thank goodness! I think I've started an internal clock as to when to take down the tree. I would have done it today but nooo - I had to watch these movies and eat

So here we go with what was seen.

The Way We Were
Amazingly enough, I had never seen this Redford/Streisand classic about a couple's love story. I knew the story, but had not sat through a viewing of the film. Recently, I saw an episode of Sex and The City where the girls are talking about the movie and it piqued my interest to actually make the effort to watch it. Thank the lords for Netflix and their Watch Instantly program. I liked the movie a lot and I'm short of saying that I loved it.

Stranger Than Fiction
What an entertaining movie this is. Will Farrell plays Harold Crick, an IRS auditor, who starts hearing a voice in his head narrating his actions. The voice, as it turns out, is Emma Thompson who is writing a book about Farrell's character. Things get kicked into high gear when Harold hears the author say that his death is imminent and starts trying to figure out who the author is to try to prevent his doom. The movie is really good and is cute when it comes to the love story between Harold and the baker. I was surprised with the talent on this cast (Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah, and Maggie Gyllenhaal) and the witty writing. Highly recommended.

Notes On A Scandal
First of all, the acting of the two leading ladies in this film is superb. The story moves along rather well and gives enough suspense to make you nervous for the characters of the film. Its amazing how some movies can pick up on the nuances of human behavior. I swear, Dame Judi Dench has really really scared me. And that scene where she's trying to force Cate Blanchett's character to choose between her and Cate's family was just amazing. They both do a good job of conveying their sides of the friendship and you feel sorry for Dench's character but you also know better since you know she's pulling all these puppet strings.

Amazingly enough, I got three good movies in! Now I have to hit the theaters and catch up on some flicks on the big screen.

Things to see:
National Treasure 2 - yes, I know, I heard it sucked but I hate to admit I really liked the first one so I have to see this one.
Juno - Seems like its the Miss Little Sunshine of this year.
Charlie Wilson's War - I'm such a sucker for Aaron Sorkin's writing.
Walk Hard - Its John C. Reilly for goodness sake!
The Savages - looks good, its all I got.
P.S. I Love You - I know it doesn't look good, but I can't help it! I should just read the book instead.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Festivus!

Well Christmas if finally upon us and I'd like to send out a little holiday how-do-you-do to all my friends, family, and strangers who read this blog. Hope Santa brings you all your heart's desire and that you are able to spend time with the ones you love.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Freakin' Holiday Spirit

About an hour ago, my mom and I started hearing major sirens around my neighborhood. It sounded like they were driving all over the place and they just wouldn't stop. At first it was just another one of those things, but after about 10 minutes, I was seriously getting concerned. We looked out to see if there was a fire, there was nothing. But still, the fire trucks seemed to be getting closer and closer.

Finally it sounded like it was down the street. I ventured out because my curiousity knows no bounds and then, it was revealed to me.

The reason for all the noise for the past 30 minutes: SANTA CLAUS.

Yup, Santa Claus was riding on a fire engine waving at children on the various streets of my neighborhood. I'm sure this tradition is played out in cities all over so it shouldn't be that huge of a shock. But, I always feel like I get blindsided by this. Last year, I was at a stop sign a block away from my apartment when the little caravan of police cars and fire engines passed in front of me. The one thing that gets me is that I never know when it happens. Is it the 23rd? Is it the Sunday before? It would obviously make more sense that its the 23rd though.

Anyways, figured I'd share how on this Sunday evening I thought that we were being attacked, when in reality Santa was going for a joy ride.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

A Great Saturday Night

1) Wrap Presents
2) Finally cleaning/organizing Jake's room
3) Finish decorating for Christmas
4) Play Super Mario Party 8.
5) Realize that my son likes Usher and has some smooth moves
6) Finally uploaded a video on Youtube!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Yay! Everyone Hates Jessica Simpson!

In case you hadn't heard, Tony Romo from the Dallas Cowboys had the worst game of his career on Sunday. Most, if not all, Dallas fans have chosen to blame Jessica Simpson, Romo's new girlfriend, for the bad performance. Romo's teammate, the illustrious Terrell Owens joined the bandwagon in blaming Simpson - then backing off later in the day saying that he was joking (which he probably was, everyone likes a story).

So - there are 2 games left in the regular season. This Saturday the Cowboys play against Carolina and next week, they play against my beloved Redskins. There is a new website up and running that is helping the anti-Dallas fans: Ruin Romo.

There are a few steps to follow:
1) Buy Tickets to the next Dallas Game.
2) Print out this picture in Full Color.
3) Cut out eyes and head.
4) Paste or tape to a heavy piece of paper or cardboard.
5) Paste popsicle stick to bottom for easy handling.
6) Bring it to the game and let Tony know Jessica is there for him!
7) Celebrate after your team wins!

I can't believe that I actually agree with the people of Dallas on something! On a side note, at last night's Pub Quiz - the winning team's name was "If we lose, we are fucking Jessica Simpson." Obviously, they weren't fucking her because they won.

I wonder how effective it would be if I make one of these signs and wave it around in my apartment on Saturday.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Being An Idiot

I've had two instances in the span of 3 days that have made me feel like an idiot. And apparently, I find enough humor it in to post it out into the internet.

Idiot Instance #1
I mentioned my cable being an issue a few blog posts ago. Since I've already done what I can do by exchanging my cable box, the cable man came by on Saturday to check out what the problem was. The cable man was nice enough to tell me that the wrong cable was used to hook up to the cable box.
Where I Fess Up: A few months ago, in preparation of setting up my living room for the "new television", I bought some cable. The purpose was to set up my TV from the north wall of the apartment (where the cable came out of the wall) and move it to the southeast corner of the apartment (where it would would look awesome). I actually pulled up the carpet, stuck the cable under the wall, and replaced the carpet all the way to the new area from the wall connection. Apparently, I bought the wrong type of cord and now I have to buy the correct type of cord and redo the whole thing to fix the picture.
Reason Why This Makes Me An Idiot: I could have paid the cable guy $35 to fix it and I didn't because "I could do it myself".

Idiot Instance #2
Yesterday, I tried putting my (automatic) car into gear and I couldn't. I would push the button on the gear shift and try to put it into reverse and nothing. Try again - NOTHING! The damn thing didn't work. Finally after pressing and unpressing the break it finally went. I figured it was a one time thing until it happened again tonight, twice.
Where I Fess Up: All my cars (in the past) were manual transmissions. My dad would often laugh at me if I was driving his car and I couldn't get the key out after turning off the car because I would forget to put the car in park. Yes, I have my blonde moments. I'm just not used to the automatic cars! I've learned all of the tricks with the sticks (no pun intented, but kind of funny now that I point it out) and when something goes wrong with an automatic it feels like I can't do anything about it because its not a manual transmission. I ended up calling the ex-husband and calling to play his mechanical skills and he told me to push a button near the base of the gear shift while pressing the button on the gear shift and that should make it work...and it did!
Reason Why This Makes Me An Idiot: I have fiddled with that button over and over again wondering what it does but never really figured it out because I thought it had something to do with the overdrive. In reality it says "Gear Shift Lock Override".

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Introducing The Youngin' To Great Comedy

Today, I bought myself a great early Christmas present.

I honestly feel that The Muppet Show (and Mel Brooks) contributed to my (and my brother's) sense of humor. So when I saw this sucker on sale, I had to get it. When I was unwrapping it, Jake asked me who the Muppets were. I had to double check that this was indeed my child but then I realized that I was a basically given a lump of life and I have to mold him into what I think he should be. God help me if he turns into Alex P. Keaton, but thats a story for another post.

Back to the we've managed to squeeze in about 9 episodes tonight since we started relatively early. Can you venture a guess who his favorite character has turned out to be? The Swedish Chef!

Here is a little taste of what my kid has fallen in love with:

OK - what kind of sensitive wimps are we putting out in the world if this is the stuff WE grew up on and everything else is so watered down? The man has a gun to make donuts! Let's not mention the Chinese cake he tries to beat with a bat, the Mexican lobster he tries to kill and the bandidos come to save him, and the chicken he treatens with a butcher's knife. So already we know much of this wouldn't fly with the current censors...but look at this treasure I actually saw as I was typing this.

Quotable line:
"Of course it's a female! You don't expect me dancing with a male, do you? That'd be weird!"

Seriously, are we fucked up? Because I find that line funny and not offensive at all and yet, it wouldn't fly this day in age on any of the kids shows. Are we better rounded adults than our kids will be or have we evolved into tolerant beings because of how open we have to be to accept the changes that our world is going through?

There is no point in getting into any discussion about this because I know you guys just really want to sing the go at it:


See what happens when you give bad customer service? Karma always gets its revenge...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Being Left Behind

At this very moment, the Jakeman is on the phone with his classmate hooking up the Wii's so that they can play Pokemon Battle Revolution together over the Wi-Fi.

Damn, I'm getting so old!

Oh, Marimo!

I'm just sitting on my couch and surfing the net, trying to recover from this cold that has basically bitch-slapped me into submission. I come across Dooce and Heather posted a link to this video. Its a 10 minute Japanese short film about a girl, Mika and her dog, Marimo.

Let me state for the gals that I didn't expect to cry but I did. And it was Steel Magnolias/Beaches-worthy crying but without the sobbing. Thank goodness for that!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Fighting The Evil Cable Company

I have been having issues with my cable box for a while now and everything seemed to come to a head today.

For the past few weeks, a few channels have slowly gotten worse in terms of quality (think snow). I called the customer service line and they suggested I go exchange my cable box to try and fix the problem. I was finally able to head out this morning to do that. So I had the address in my head and Jake and I started our errands. Before heading to the cable office, I had to stop at the bank and I had promised Jake a stop at Starbucks for a hot chocolate. I knew from the map that a particular Starbucks in a strip mall was around the cable office so I opted to take him there. We get back in the car and start driving. Going back and forth on the road for about 10 minutes, I couldn't seem to find this cable office. I finally call the cable company to ask them where it was. "They say "oh its behind the Wells Fargo Bank." Um, that Wells Fargo bank is about 20 yards away from the Starbucks we were just at. I seriously didn't believe the representative, but sure enough - thats where the cable office was. And yes, I felt like an idiot.

So I get my cable box and head home to get it hooked up since I had invited my uncle and cousins over for the Mayweather/Hatton fight. I hook it up and I can't see any On Demand channels or the Pay Per View option to order the fight. I figure its because I just changed the box, so I call the customer service line. They tell me that I have a past due balance that I have to pay in order to get the fight. Um, ok - so I pay the balance and they said that everything would be ready to go in about 2 hours while they process the payment. This was at 1pm.

I was busy getting ready for the family to come over and at about 5pm, I call the cable company to order the fight. I finally speak to a human being at 5:15pm. This was our conversation:

Me: Hi I'm interested in order the Mayweather/Hatton fight and I can't do it through my cable box for some reason.
CSR: Yes, I see here that you have a balance.
Me: Well, I took care of the past due balance this afternoon and they said to call back a couple of hours to wait for it to post to my account.
CSR: Maybe you have to wait 24 hours.
Me: What? Thats not what they told me earlier. They said that its all resolved and I just had to wait a couple hours.
CSR: Well, you have to take care of this balance.
Me: But that balance is my December bill. I'm current on the account.
CSR: I don't know what to tell you ma'am. You have to pay this amount to get the Pay Per View to work.
Me: That doesnt make any sense, the account isnt due until the end of December.
CSR: Yes and after you pay it, I will process the payment and have the fight turned on. That will take 1-2 hours.
Me: No! I already waited my 1-2 hours for the payment to post. I want you to turn on the fight right now. Are you guarantee me that the fight will be on in 1-2 hours?
CSR: Yes
Me: Then why can't you just turn on the fight now? It makes no sense.
CSR: What? You can't wait 2 hours?
Me: Excuse me?
CSR: Its what the process is ma'am (and in a sarcastic tone). I'm sorry.
Me: I'd like to talk to your supervisor please.
CSR: Fine, please hold. God bless you.

I'm put on hold for about 5 minutes and nothing. So I hang up and call again.

Me: Hi, I'm having trouble ordering the fight and I was wondering if you could help me.
New CSR: Sure, let me double check your account.
Me: Thanks
New CSR: Ok - the price of the event is $54.99. Can you check channel 802 please.
Me: Um, ok
New CSR: Let me process your request. Please hold a moment.

The undercard fights comes on the television

New CSR: Well that should do it - anything else I can do for you.
Me: Uh, you have been great. Thank you!
New CSR: Thank you and enjoy the fight!

So the family and I are cooking our hot dogs and hamburgers and watching the fight. At around 7:30pm, the picture gets all wonky; cutting out, freezing, and only hearing the audio at times. At 7:45pm, the picture goes out completely and I'm left with a black screen. We turn off the cable box a few times and wait it out in case its a temporary thing. At 8:15pm, I call the cable company (again). And after being on hold for 20 minutes, I get this conversation going:

Me: Hi, I ordered the Mayweather/Hatton fight and it went out about 30 minutes ago.
CSR: Ok, let me check your area for outages.
Me: Thank you.
CSR: I can't see any problems in your area. Do you have any other problems with other channels?
Me: Nope, everything is fine. Its just that one channel.
CSR: Are you sure you are on the right channel?
Me: Uh, yes. We were watching it and it just went out.
CSR: I just sent a signal to your box, did anything happen?
Me: Nope, nothing. Still out.
CSR: Ok, I really don't know what to tell you. Let me send out another signal and if nothing happens in 10 minutes, please call us back.
Me: You know, can I just stay on the phone for 10 minutes because if hang up, its going to be another 20 minutes being on hold.
CSR: Sorry, ma'am. Just call back in 10 minutes if you have any issue.

Now, during this call my cousins and I were joking that it was probably that first CSR that helped me getting her revenge on me for wanting to talk to her supervisor. That she turned off my access to the fight to have the last laugh. After 10 minutes, still staring at the black screen so I call the cable company AGAIN.

Me: Hi...(yes, I sounded defeated). I was watching the Mayweather/Hatton fight and the screen went blank. Can you please help me?
CSR: I can try! Lets see - let me first send a test signal.
Me: Yeah, I already went through all this with another representative and she told me to call back in 10 minutes if I didn't get the picture back and thats where I'm at.
CSR: Ok - let me check if there are any outages in your area.
Me: Sigh -ok. I was already told that there weren't. Almost made me feel like I was making it up.
CSR: Well, looks like there are some outages in California.
Me: Great - is there any luck that they will be fixed before the main event? I mean it would suck if this actually came back on only for us to hear "That was the best fight ever!" and I'm charged for looking at a black screen for most of the night.
CSR: Don't worry about that. I'm going to credit your account right now to make sure that you dont get charged for it since you did call with your issues.
Me: Thank you very much!
CSR: Keep checking the channel, you never know - it might come back on and you'll get to see it for free.
Me: Ha! Thanks - we'll keep checking.
CSR: Have a good night.

Time at the end of call: 9:20pm

While all this was happening, we were basically watching the Kings/Coyotes game and surfing the net for entertainment. I found this round by round coverage of the fight. So every couple of minutes, I would read out the recap. We finally decided that maybe we should vote who would be Mayweather and who would be Hatton in a re-enactment while I read out the play by play. But, unfortunately, that didn't fly.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Best Inmate Escape Story Ever!

Going through Fark, I found this little diddy that caught my eye. Someone needs to turn this into a movie starring Martin Lawrence.

Inmate escapes by clogging toilet to create distraction
CHARLESTOWN, Ind. (AP) - An inmate escaped from a work-release crew after he created a distraction with an overflowing toilet, authorities said.

Wayne Mitchell, 24, was in the Clark County Jail for a probation-violation warrant, but had been working with a crew clearing roadside trash. When the crew stopped at the Clark County Fraternal Order of Police lodge to eat lunch, Mitchell went into a restroom and clogged a toilet, causing it to overflow, police said. He then came out saying he needed some towels from the jail's van to sop up the mess."The toilet overflowed and the rest of the inmates were trying to clean it up," said Maj. Chuck Adams of the Clark County Sheriff's Department. Instead of going to the van, Mitchell walked to nearby G&R Auto Sales, where an employee gave him the keys to a car he said he wanted to look over, police said. Police said he then stole a red 1995 Chevrolet Camaro convertible.

Officers later found Mitchell's jail-issued clothes at the dealership, about 15 miles north of Louisville, Ky.

First of all, this guy deserves an award other than his freedom for outsmarting everyone in this situation. Let make a few assumptions and observations:

1) He is on a roadside trash pick up detail. A group of about 20 people that are doing community service probably have about 2 people overseeing them. These guys are PRISONERS so you'd think they'd have more people supervising them. Plus they stopped at the Clark County Fraternal Order of Police lodge. How many people do you think were sitting around in there with a law enforcement background? If the amount of people who used to hang out at the VA in Ridgecrest were any indication, this is getting more and more embarassing for the Department of Corrections in Indiana.
2) Isn't the toilet clogged one of the oldest distractions? Oh look, its the Easter bunny!!!
3) OK - how many people does it take to clean up a clogged toilet?
4) I'll ask - how did he clog it up? I'm going down THAT route because I live with a 6 yr old.
5) Didn't the car salesman get a driver's license from escapee? Don't they collect those items when you, um, check into prison?
6) My favorite part of this is that they haven't caught him.

Vote For The Foos!

The 50th Grammy Award nominations were announced this morning with Kanye West leading the pack and Amy Winehouse a close second. But, not too far behind are my boys - The Foo Fighters. The Foos are nominated for 5 awards including Album of the Year and Record of the Year for their song "The Pretender".

Now, I'm not going to lie, I LOVE "The Pretender". Anytime I'm alone in my car, I put Echos, Patience, Silence, and Grace in my cd player and just rock out to that song. Let me put it to you this way, I would buy the Rockband accessory for my Wii just so I could sing this song in my apartment. I haven't had this much love for a rocker since Lenny Kravitz stole my heart when I first heard "Are You Gonna Go My Way?"

Curious to see what my hype is all about? Here is their video for "The Pretender". And yes Derry, I've already made up a karaoke routine to this...I PROUDLY ADMIT IT!

Now - the Grammys need to make this up to me and have the Foos win (even though I think that either Rhianna or Amy Winehouse are going to take it). Why you ask? Did you get a chance to watch the My Night at the Grammys special on CBS last weekend? They counted down the top 25 moments in Grammy history.

In the spot #25, Aretha Franklin steps in for Luciano Pavarotti to sing Nessun Dorma, a famous Italian aria. all know my love for Aretha so being that she's #25 was already irking me. But, she was asked to sing for Pavarotti one hour before he was to take the stage. ONE HOUR. OPERA. ITALIAN. How can this not be higher on the list? How? Here is the audio from the Grammys.

When I first heard this performance, I cried. To this day, I'm still moved by the pure emotion that she conveys. She is the best and I'm now even more excited about seeing her in February.

Some other memorable performances on the Grammy flashback show were:

Melissa Etheridge and Joss Stone with their homage to Janis Joplin:

Why I think this video is awesome: Joss Stone (wacky as she is) has one of the best soul voices out there and Melissa - well Melissa rules. She ranks right up there, not as high as Aretha but as high as Annie Lennox. And not only did she rock the performance but she did it after fighting her battle with breast cancer.

Michael Jackson proving why he was a great performer:

Why I think this performance is awesome: Not only does he combine two of my all time favorite MJ songs but ITS MICHAEL! And the Michael that we would refer to in the present tense, not the past tense.

Ricky Martin launching the Latin music scene onto America:

Why I think this performance is awesome: There are moments in life that for one reason or another, you remember vividly. For me, this is one of them. I remember being in my friend's apartment helping him put together his tv stand or something and watching this unfold on the tv before me. I remember thinking "this is when he becomes a full blown star in America". Lets not mention that he was in Menudo, star on General Hospital and was already known world wide considering that the song he was singing was the anthem to the World Cup. But you know those pesky white people! And you know they were all dancing in their seats but they were too embarassed to get up and get their groove on...

So the Grammy Night thing - gave the #1 spot to Green Day singing American Idiot. I actually love Green Day and American Idiot is one of my favorite songs from them - but #1!?!?! Did I mention Aretha was #25 and she sang Opera? And trust me, I didn't even go into my rant about Alan Jackson and Celine Dion being ranked higher than the videos I posted.

This is why the Foos need to win this year. It can't be this HUGE shock that rockers can have the best album and record of the year in music that they get voted the #1 moment in Grammy history. At least American Idiot was bashing the Bush Admnistration, so I'll cut them some slack on that one.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

An Angry Worded Response To A Customer Service Survey

This is an actual response that I sent to Levitz. The reason I was asked for my feedback was that I had ordered a couch and I finally had it delivered this past Sunday. Lets not mention that I had ordered it at the end of October. After getting the delivery moved around because of a back order issue, the couch was in my sights when I received an email a week ago that I was receiving the couch on Sunday. I got a call on Wednesday confirming my delivery date and that I was going to get a call on Saturday to firm up the 3 hour window for the actual delivery. Around 4:30pm on Saturday, I realized I never got a call and luckily, I had the phone number in my cell to be able to call and find out what time they were coming.

Here is my response in the "Do you have any comments or issues regarding this delivery?" portion of the survey that I was sent on Monday night.

First of all, I never got a call about my delivery window. I had to call the warehouse to get that information. Additionally, I received an email on Monday regarding my delivery time on Sunday. What good is that going to do me when the delivery supposedly already happened? Secondly, my delivery time was for 1-4pm. At 4:15pm, I called the customer service line to find out why my couch had not been delivered. They told me that I would receive a call in no more than 15 minutes to get an update on my delivery. At 4:45pm, I called again because I had not heard anything from the warehouse. In about 5 minutes, I did receive a call from a very nice young lady (I'm sorry, I dont know her name) who told me that I had to wait 45 more minutes for my couch to be delivered. I was very upset that my whole Sunday had to be put to waiting around for my couch to be delivered. Whoever called me that last time (well, actually only time) was extremely polite and apologetic. She offered to waive the delivery price for the next day but I was not going to wait yet another day for a couch that I had received about 4 emails changing the delivery date. She also offered to refund my delivery charge, but I had received free delivery at the time of my purchase.

I can understand that delays happen - but 2 hours past my 3 hour window is completely unacceptible. As a customer, I would have truly appreciated a phone call from the warehouse telling me that the driver was delayed and given me a more detailed time of arrival. I was told that you offer the option of getting a phone call 30 minutes - 1 hour before the arrival of the delivery truck. However, your company failed to complete your end of the bargain by arriving during the window that you gave me. As soon as a delivery driver can see that they are not going to be able to fulfill their promise, then someone in the warehouse should call the customer and let them know in case they have a prior engagement after the time window given.

I figured I had gotten all of my anger out and then they asked me if I had any additional comments...well I guess I did.

I'm just very frustrated that I had to basically waste an entire Sunday to receive my couch. The driver never really apologized for being late. They just came in, saw where it needed to be set up, dropped it off, and left after I signed for the item. I wasnt treated with disrespect, but I was really upset and didn't want to take my anger out on the driver because I don't specifically know the reasons for him being late.

I understand that your company makes hundreds of deliveries a day and I'm sure the horrible experience of one customer may not amount to much. But as of right now, I will not be shopping at Levitz again and encouranging my friends and family to do the same because of this experience.

And yes, I realize now that I misspelled unacceptable and encouraging.

And in case you are curious, this is the reason for all the hooplah:

Isn't it pretty?!?!?!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Best Widget Ever!

Hmm, if I could only figure out how to put it in my sidebar without screwing up anything I have on there now.

My Ghetto Cars

When you sit in your car - you love your car. It doesn't embarass you. It takes care of you by taking you from point a to point b without leaving you stranded somewhere. It protects you from the elements.

In my life, all my cars have failed me in these examples - one way or another.

Car #1 - 1980 Mazda RX-7
Yes, I had a race car. I loved this car. It made me feel pretty badass driving around in this thing. True, the bucketseats were so deep that I had have a pillow to sit on. True, the defroster didn't work at all so when it got cold, I had to roll the window down a bit and put the heater on full blast to create some sort of El Nino effect in my car so I was able to see out the windows as I drove. I could actually live with all these things - but the one thing I couldn't live with were the backfires.

Sometimes, when I would turn my car off, my car would backfire. And not just a POP backfire, I'm talking about a BOOM! backfire. This was when I worked at Universal and employees would park in this parking structure. On the weekends, I had an early shift and would park on the first level. Being that I'm a person of routine, I would park in the same area every weekend. The EMT's would change shifts in the same area as I would park and I would see them those mornings. I got so in tune with my car, that I knew when a backfire was coming on. Most times, it was in some mall parking lot where I could pretend I owned another another car. But, when it happened those weekend mornings....I had nowhere to hide since it was usually the only the EMT's and me. So I would do what any self respecting girl would do if I knew it was coming - I'd run. Certain EMT's finally figured out it was me - oh the memories.

Car #2 - 1999 Nissan 200sx
Another racecar - sensing a pattern here? This blog has detailed many adventures with my devil car. Most notably, it breaking down in Montclair when we were on our way to my friend's son's baptism party and the constant oil leaks. But what I will always remember this car, is for the fact that the driver side window didnt work. It was an automatic window and one day it just stopped working. I tried over and over to get it fixed and if it was the correct motor, then it was the wrong switch - I was destined to not have this window work ever again. I was so embarassed by the window thing that I really cut down on my fast food eating because I couldn't go through the drive-thru. Having to open the door to open, pay, and receive the food was just too much humiliation!

The best story of this window was when I was driving home in the carpool lane with Jake and a cop forced me out thinking that I was alone. He was yelling at me to roll in the window down and I was just screaming "THE WINDOW DOESNT WORK!". I was so close to opening the sun roof and just standing up and telling him that I did have someone else in the car. And yes, I did do the sun roof thing once in a drive thru.

Car #3 1996 Nissan Sentra
This is an interim car until I find something I really like - whether its a new car or a newer used car. This car isn't pretty but it works. Sure, it has some sort of tiny oil leak, but I'm used to living with that. What I can't live with, is that fact that it leaks. And I mean, I realized it leaks when it was raining and the water was coming into my car! I was driving to work Friday morning and it was raining. I got to a stop sign and all of sudden I felt water coming in. At first, I brushed it off because I was in the car. But then it happened again. I looked up and I saw the water gathering near the visor and then dripping down....into my lap. I cleaned it up thinking (hoping) maybe it was a one time thing but nope, it wasn't. I grabbed a napkin and wiped it, then saw the water gather enough for another drop to fall again, into my lap.

Now I notice that there is another section under the visor of the passenger side that is doing the same thing. TWO LEAKS! I make my left turn and I guess a lot of water has gathered wherever its gathering and a some water falls into my lap. Great, I now look like I have peed in my pants and I'm on my way to work. I make a right turn and some water is starting to fall into my passenger seat/floor area. Because I can be lazy, I happen to have a couple of sweaters in my car. I grab them and I put one where the water is falling in my lap and the other in the passenger seat. And thats how I drove to work. When I get there (and find a spot on the 2nd floor so I wouldnt have to park on the roof), I look on the roof of the car. I notice that there are two tiny rusted holes near the top of the windshield. Fabulous.

The funny thing about this, is that I've already made this whole scenario up that if I have to park on the street and I'd have to put a big plastic trash back held down with bricks to prevent water from getting into the car. At least I have trashbags and I can always swipe a couple of bricks from my little garden in front of my apartment. Plan B is set!

Thursday, November 29, 2007


Damn this puzzle kept me up for a while, but I finally got it. I love my determination.

There is a bus with 7 children inside of it
Each child has 7 rucksacks
In each rucksack there are 7 big cats
Every big cat has 7 small cats
Everything listed above is entirely in the bus
All objects are unique
There is no driver
Every child has 2 legs
Every cat has 4 legs

How many legs are in the bus?

Can you solve it? The solution is committed to memory, if you need help just post.

How Hard Is It To Proofread?

A time when spellcheck would have done wonders.

I don't know about you - but a HAMBUGER doesn't sound very appealing.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Most Distrubing Yet Most Interesting Hour Of My Life

I was watching a special on The History Channel called The Pigs. Yes, you read right...PIGS. At first, Jake and I weren't sure how it was going to turn out, I mean how interesting are pigs really?

The description of the show read like this:
It is said that the pig is as smart as a three-year-old human. The pancreas, heart valve and intestines of the pig have been transplanted into human bodies, yet the primary use of the pig is for food. Watch the pig transform into bacon, ham, ribs and sausage, using a high tech water knife, at Burger's Smokehouse in Missouri. Then Chef Chris Cosentino re-creates old world dishes from pig parts and culinary artisans attempt to duplicate long-vanished pork specialties like prosciutto and acorn-fed pigs.

Interesting fact: some pigs can run a 7 minute mile. 7 MINUTE MILE! I'm lucky if I can do a mile in less than 9 minutes. So I've learned that a pig can out run me. Great for county fair races bad for my ego.

Then they started talking about how they inseminate pigs to maximize the breeding. Because its the History Channel and they like to be detailed, they showed how they did it. This is about the time when I stopped eating my dinner. Jake was rather unphased, true, he probably didn't understand what was going on but I was just sitting this:

I just couldn't believe what was happening not only were they showing the insemination, but now we've moved to a company that actually collects, analyzes, and sells semen. Yes, you read that right. And they showed the collection method!

Please refer to picture above for reaction shot.

And by the way, Jake is still unphased. Its one of those moments in parenthood that you have to pick, either you react and explain why you react or just let it slide and pray that they don't notice.

Jake turns to me and asks "Mom, are they helping the pigs pee?"

"Yes, Jake. Yes they are."

Monday, November 26, 2007


I wanted to post something...really I did. But I have nothing. I could talk about the Heroes episode I just saw but quite frankly it wasn't all that spectacular to be writing home to mom about (although I can pick up the phone and call my father and talk to him about it). Next week is the "season" finale. We'll see how they do. They have gotten about 4 decent episodes and the only thing I have been excited about so far has been the killing that has been going on. I may need to re-evaluate my values.

Actually something rather exciting in my own little world has happened over the weekend that really, only I can get excited about. Apparently, the SciFi network has started rerunning season 3 episodes of Battlestar Galactica and I'm starting to catch up thanks to my TiVo. I managed to watch 8 hours of BSG! Yes, I typed out BSG and if you watched, you would understand how fraking good this show is. I've tried to get a few of my friends to watch but I think thats its that one step from geekhood they are hesitating from taking.

Its ok - I get it. I'll be here...waiting until you are ready to show up. Its totally worth it, TRUST ME.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Best Birthday Present Ever

My little Scorpio turned a whopping 6 years old earlier this month. And the great mom that I am, I got him a Wii. At first, I thought this was yet something else to corrupt my child's mind with and then something strange happened.


I wish that I could say that it was from being pushed into it from having to play with Jake. But no, this was all me. The funniest thing about this, is that I've gotten a bit obsessed with creating Mii's.

What's a Mii you say? A Mii is a cartoon/digital version of yourself (or anyone else) to be used in Wii games such as Wii Sports and Wii Play. They have websites all over the place where people can show off the mii's they have made. And some sites, even give you step by step instruction on how to make some of your favorite celebrity mii's.

Here are some of the ones that are on my Wii:





I have many more on my mii - I just don't want to expose my geekiness to the internet world.

Movie Review: Enchanted

In lieu of staying home and being tortured by the play of my favorite football team, I invited my family to go watch Enchanted in the theaters.

When I first heard of this movie, I thought - "Oh God! Seriously?" I thought it would be cheesy and not very funny. Then, I saw the trailer and thought "Ok - it is Disney. It looks campy. And it breaks out into song in the middle of Central Park. Maybe its not that bad." So I have actually been looking forward to this movie coming out for a while now and this morning the curiousity was quenched.

Now - a little quiz for my avid readers - between the 6 year old and the 31 year old - who LOVED this movie? I'll give you a hint...its the one who DOESN'T get the whole Pokemon thing.

Lets just say when the movie ended, Jake said "Thank goodness thats over! Can we go to the park now?" He hated all the songs, which was funny considering that the night before we stayed up until midnight watching White Christmas. So, if you know me even a little bit, you know that I loved this movie and yes...I was crying through most if it (I have no shame!).

If you haven't seen a preview, the movie is about a soon to be fairy tale princess that is sent to modern day New York and meets up with a New Yorker and his daughter who end up helping her while she waits for her Prince Charming to rescue her.

Giselle, played by Amy Adams (who I only knew as the Debra Messing's little sister from The Wedding Date) is so cute and charming as the displaced princess. One part I was cracking up at was when she woke up in New York and was calling the woodland animals to help her clean. Well, in New York, there are not many woodland creatures, but there are plenty of cockroaches, rats, flies, and pigeons that show up to help.

This is a family movie but can very easily pass for a date movie. The movie is rather predictable (its a Disney movie for goodness sake) but it has enough charm and wit to keep even those pesky cynical guys entertained.

Final Rating: Full Price

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

I'm thankful for returning home from my parent's house and the turkey dinner to my tivo, my wii, my wireless internet, and unlimited amounts of soup and sprite to help me recover from whatever food virus I contracted yesterday.

Oh what a great Thanksgiving this was...

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Taking Political Correctness Too Far

Santas warned 'ho ho ho' offensive to women
Wed Nov 14, 11:04 PM ET

Santas in Australia's largest city have been told not to use Father Christmas's traditional "ho ho ho" greeting because it may be offensive to women, it was reported Thursday.
Sydney's Santa Clauses have instead been instructed to say "ha ha ha" instead, the Daily Telegraph reported.

One disgruntled Santa told the newspaper a recruitment firm warned him not to use "ho ho ho" because it could frighten children and was too close to "ho", a US slang term for prostitute.
"Gimme a break," said Julie Gale, who runs the campaign against sexualising children called Kids Free 2B Kids.

"We are talking about little kids who do not understand that "ho, ho, ho" has any other connotation and nor should they," she told the Telegraph.

"Leave Santa alone."

A local spokesman for the US-based Westaff recruitment firm said it was "misleading" to say the company had banned Santa's traditional greeting and it was being left up to the discretion of the individual Santa himself.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Lazy Weekend

I love weekends when I don't make any plans. I love that the only things I did have plans for were to do my laundry and catch up on the movies from Netflix - oh yes, and watching that hockey game featuring my favorite group of scrappers. What an interesting weekend it turned out to be.

Saturday was relatively quiet - I had every intention of doing a full cleaning of the apartment, but that procrastination kicked in and I think I ended up dozing off while watching some rerun of I Love Lucy. The sunset and the countdown to the game began. After the first two periods - I didn't know if my loyalty and love for my team was going to get me through till the end of the game. My Kings were down 4-0 and looking like their week off had put rust on their gears. Then my loyal reader(s)...THEN - the ass kicking began! It was 4-1, then 4-2, 4-3....4-4! Then by golly the Kings took the lead! They actually set a franchise record in scoring 5 goals in 5 minutes and 7 seconds (yes, I didnt have to look that up, shut up)! I was actually jumping up and down and screaming in my apartment anytime they scored. At least I wasnt wearing my jersey while watching the game at home. Right after they took the lead - a penalty was called on the Kings and Dallas tied it up sending it to overtime. In overtime, the Kings score and win!

You can see the yo-yo of emotions from this highlight reel (please ignore the ass kicking at the beginning of the video, thanks!)

Sunday, I didn't have to fight anyone for the laundry and managed to watch Pan's Labrynth on my brand new laptop! I freaking love this thing!

But the best part - THE BEST PART of this whole weekend was that I was actually going to see The Departed. Now, if you are not aware of my drama with this movie, let me give you a little run down. I got The Departed from Netflix in June... J-U-N-E. For one reason or another, I would always procrastinate in watching it. So finally today was the day. I pulled the DVD out of the sleeve and put in the DVD player....I pushed play and nothing. Nothing? NOTHING! I turn the DVD player off and turn it back on. Same thing. I take the DVD out and its scratched to hell. CRAP! So I put it away to send back and figure I can just get it on pay-per-view. But, I can't find my remote for the cable box to order it. Sigh - I'm destined to not see this movie.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Make It Stop!

I can't get this song out of my head! Damn that Fergie and her catchy tunes...

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Involuntary Self-Imposed Hiatus Is Over

Thats what you get when your computer basically says "Yeah, I know you want to turn me on, but I'm going on vacation!" and then, well, not turning on - at all.

I have to admit, this whole computer being on the fritz thing was pretty funny. I asked a friend of mine to check it out and the next day when I went to see him about it, our conversation sort of went like this:

Me: Hi!
Him: Hello
Me: So tell me! Did you get a chance to figure it out?
Him: Um, how long have you had this computer?
Me: I dont know, about 7 years I think.
Him: Huh
Me: Why?
Him: Because I havent seen anything like this in about 10 years.
Me: Really?
Him: Yeah, it was kind of funny.
Me: How funny?
Him: I also found a spider web in there.
Me: (speechless)

I have officially started looking for a laptop.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Don’t you hate it when you are sitting alone and that pesky lightbulb goes on over your head and you just realize what the hell you want or need in life? I’m rather content in living life obliviously at times with no hard needs or desires (ok, except for the whole being healthy thing and my Kings winning games). But over the past few weeks, I’ve been realizing more and more about what I want in life.

I blame this book I’m reading: Eat, Pray, Love. It’s really opening my eyes to certain things about me, stuff I really haven’t done since I was in therapy after the whole “breaking up my marriage” thing. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done the self evaluation routine a few times since I’ve moved back to LA and I’ve gotten really good at standing my ground on certain things, but I’m always shocked at how I can allow certain people to treat me how I don’t like to be treated.

Sometimes I think I’m too nice. I think about other people’s feelings and what THEY want more than what I get in return. And by the time I realize that I’m making all the effort, it’s too late because I’m so upset. Upset with them for not making an effort and myself for not saying anything sooner.

So what’s the answer to this?
A) Become a bitch?
I can do that…but its not who I am.
B) Actually tell people how I feel and expect them to change?
That doesn’t work either because if I tell them 1) they respect it and try to work on it or 2) they think I’m selfish and stupid for actually having feelings and expectations.
C) Keep my mouth shut?
Surprisingly enough, this is always my default answer.

I know what my answer is – but the question ultimately becomes: do I actually follow my own advice?

Sigh – I think its time to listen to more Aretha Franklin.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Little Inspirational Message From Me To You

With all the negative stuff that fills our lives on a daily basis, I thought I'd put a little sunshine up for all of us.

Today's Message of the Day is: Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you smile.

I wish it was so easy...

Thanks Mon!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I really dont know what to say about it....

And my friend and I called the number on the screen, its a real company. Funny thing, is that I can name two people that I would buy this for and they would be pretty jazzed about receiving it as a present.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Competition for the Laundry

Don't you hate it when things don't go as planned? On Sunday mornings, I tend to have a routine. I get up early (and by early I mean 7am) and get my laundry started. While that is going on, I get back to my apartment and start cleaning. I'm usually done cleaning my apartment by the time the morning NFL games start.

This morning, was no exception. I got up at 7am and since I'm usually the only one that is in the laundry room that early in the morning, I didn't rush out like I normally do. See - mistake #1. I ASSUMED that it was going to be the same as always.

I get to the laundry room and all of the machines are taken, and what sucks is that I missed it by 1 minute. So I leave my clothes and head back to the apartment to start cleaning while I wait for the machines. 32 minutes pass and I head back to the laundry room where I find the person who is screwing up my schedule. I find her LOADING THE WASHERS AGAIN.

Now, if you have 9 loads of laundry, wouldn't it make more sense to go to a laundry mat where you can do it all at once or in one of those giant machines? Just a thought.

What makes me laugh about all this is, that I could have been done with this yesterday. I had planned to go shopping for a couch but I got caught up with procrastination and laziness that the only two things I managed to do were 1) make dinner and 2) watch Legally Blonde The Musical on MTV.

So back to cleaning and unpacking I go! I'm almost done...just a few more boxes. Oh look - Field of Dreams is on AMC...

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

So Close...I Could Feel The Body Checks

HOCKEY SEASON IS BACK!! And to celebrate, Jake and I went to the Kings home opener on Saturday night. Boy...what a night!

I was really excited about these seats I had scored for the game. They were two 2 rows from the glass! Look at that view!
Now - not only was that view awesome...but when I looked to my right - lookie lookie who I see...but Peter Petrelli (aka Milo Ventimiglia from Heroes) and yes, he is that pretty in person - sigh.
So yeah, needless to say, I kept looking over at him. And then the game really started getting good and Jake ended up making a friend - Nick.
Since they have already experienced the power of the body checks up close once before, they learned their lessons. Jake bolts early and runs away seconds before Nick does the same thing when a puck is getting sent down the ice towards them. I felt bad that I laughed as hard as I did when they got the bejesus scared out of them when two players crashed into one another in front of them. But as you all know, I got over it rather quickly and decided to take pictures for the blog.
Nick and Jake not only bonded over hockey, but also over Pokemon cards. Let me state that this was going on DURING the game. Yes, I had the shame.
During the 1st Intermission, I had noticed this blonde on the left. I knew her...I just couldnt get the name out. Then I realized that it was Luc Robitaille's wife, Stacia. Kind of sad I know that, but I do.
The next intermission rolls around and Luc is back by the ice hanging out with his son. So I take my shot and scream, "Luuuc!", he looks over and I ask him for a picture. And low and behold, he comes over and meets Jake and Nick and takes a picture with them.
As you can tell by Jake's face, this was quite the highlight of the night! What cracked me up is that Jake heard me call Luc over and when he realized that Luc was indeed going to take a picture with them, he basically threw the Pokemon cards at me and had this look on his face like "Don't let him catch me with these!".
Another interesting development during the 2nd intermission was that Hayden Pentenierre (aka Claire from Heroes) shows up. If you aren't up with the celebrity rumors, they are "allegedly" dating. And from what I saw that night - they totally are.

Quite the night, I must say. The next day I decided to check out the pictures from the game and low and behold, I found an interesting one. Look below...see the player on the left NAGY lifting his right arm in triumph after the Kings scored a goal.

His glove - is covering my face! So close, yet so far away...

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Why Is This A Bad Thing?

All day today - I thought it was Wednesday. ALL DAY.

I sent emails out saying, "Please return this to me by end of tomorrow - Thursday."

I made plans in my head for "The day after tomorrow - Friday."

Until someone waved one of those fateful emails in my face did I realize that it was Thursday. I even tried to argue with them about what day it was. Who does that? What sucks even more - is that I was DISAPPOINTED I had lost a day! What the hell?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Mother Nature Is A Bitch!


For once I mean that literally.

While walking through the office today, one of my favorite coworkers comes up to me and asks me if I had seen the most recent episode of Meerkat Manor. My answer was No because of the move, I really hadn't had the time to catch up with my TiVo and I had noticed last night that the Meerkat Manor episode from Friday night had already deleted (no doubt to make room for Heroes and Weeds). He had this "cat ate the canary" look on his face and he said "yeah, something bad happens to Flower" and kind of stops. Now - if you want me to pester your ass, never EVER tell me something like that because there is nothing more I enjoy doing than getting to the bottom of something. I go into his office and he eventually fesses up what happens. I kind of don't believe him because - well...lets just say that I actually gasped when he told me what happened. I didnt get the details from him - oh no, for that I went to Wikipedia. There, the truth was laid before me...FLOWER WAS DEAD!

For those of you who don't watch the show, Flower is (was) the leader of the Whiskers who is the family of meerkats that this show mainly revolves around. They track the developments of the family, the fights with other meerkat sects over territory, and their ability to survive in the Kalahari Desert.

I was literally in shock. If this was a scripted show, it would be like killing Sarah Jessica Parker's character, Carrie, off on Sex and the City. Ok, maybe not that extreme but its huge.

Earlier this evening, I was able to sit down and see if anything interesting was on my TiVo. Low and behold, it had recorded this episode again (I swear, I love this thing). I started watching it and soon Jake joined me as well. Time is winding down in the episode and the cameras show a Cape Cobra snake slither into the burrow where Flower's newborn pups were in. As soon as she went in to check on her pups, Jake says, "Uh-oh, I think Flower's going to die." Sure enough, she gets bitten in the face by the snake and she eventually dies from her wounds. Now - I know that I knew about this when I started watching the show and I know this is a show about some meerkats half-way around the world...but....I still teared up a bit. I think it was this bit of dust from all the boxes...

So here I'm thinking, gee - that was a bit silly of me to kind of react that way. I mean its just a tv show - right? I went to the Animal Planet website to see if I could find a picture of Flower to post on the blog and I see this obituary on the website:

Gone, But Not Forgotten

Flower, star of Animal Planet's popular series, Meerkat Manor, is survived by loving mate Zaphod and many children including Mozart, Mitch, Buster, Suggs and Izzy. Flower leaves behind a devastated meerkat mob now without its fearless leader. From humble beginnings, she created one of the largest, most close-knit families on the Manor. Affectionately referred to as the "Kalahari Desert Rose" by those who knew her best, she was a formidable leader and a noble mother.

Flower, born in 2000 and the matriarch to her family, the Whiskers, lived large for a 12-inch-tall meerkat. Under her reign, the Whiskers endured trials and tribulations, ranging from sibling rivalries to violent clashes with the Commandos and the Zappas, their neighboring rival families. Despite the chaos, Flower remained a source of stability for her family, often making life-or-death decisions without breaking a sweat or cracking a claw. An inspiration to her tribe, this fearless female was no "girly-girl." Flower ruled her family with an iron paw but still revealed her softer side when indulging in cuddles with her newborns or playing in the dirt.

Flower might have lived to see future generations of Whiskers if her life wasn't cut tragically short when she came face-to-masked-face with the snake that tragically dealt her final and fatal blow. Sadly, the Whiskers have felt the stinging bite of tragedy before, having lost Shakespeare, the heroic and valiant son of Flower, last winter.

The family has asked that all donations be made in Flower's name to the
Fellow Earthlings' Wildlife Center.

~Whew - its not just me.

Airing The Dirty Laundry

Over the weekend, I moved to a bigger apartment in my building. And so last night, Jake and I went to Target to buy him a laundry hamper for his room. After walking around for about 45 minutes, it was time to head out and we headed to the registers. We go to the first open one and low and behold the person manning the register is this guy that has always been super friendly with Jake. I know this because, well I pay attention to strangers that talk to my kid.

Mind you, anytime I end up at this cashier, they end up talking as if they have been friends for YEARS and I just end up standing there like an idiot who is only there to pay for the items that are being purchased.

Man (a guy in his late 20's): Its you! My little friend!
Jake: Yes! Its me! How are you?
Man: I'm fine - and you?
Jake: Good - we just came in to buy me a hamper - we moved and I need one for my room.
Man: Wow - do you like your new place?
Jake: Its good - I like it. We have to set up my tv and thats why I we are also getting a universal remote because my mom needs to program it.
Man: Thats cool. You know - when I have a son, I wish that he is like you; smart, funny, sweet, outgoing.
Me: Do you know what sweet means Jake? Its like when you offer to make me tea when I'm not feeling well. Thats a sweet and considerate thing to do.
Jake: Oh yeah! Yes, I'm sweet.

So now I'm getting ready to pay and get out of there. I think its funny that Jake makes these friends and I'm proud how he handles the conversations. Then...the tide turns....

Man: So is your dad going to help you set up your room and stuff?
Jake: No
Me (thinking): CRAP
Man: Oh really? Why not?
Jake: Because he doesn't live with us.
Me (thinking): DOUBLE CRAP
Man: Oh?
Jake: Yeah, he lives in Torrance and we live here...
Me(thinking): SHIT!
Man: Oh, I'm sorry

Then the guy looks at me all sympathetic. So this guy probably thought that Jake's dad and I JUST broke up because of the whole "we got a new apartment" conversation.

Jake: (Sighs) Its ok.
Me: Ok, thanks for your help! Time to go Jake.
Man: Have a good one.
Jake: Bye!!! See you later!

Now, I'm not one to get embarassed but that one caught me off guard.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


List of things in this picture of Carrot Top that wig me out.

5) That bag looks like it weighs about 80 pounds and he's holding it like it weighs nothing.
4) His waist is smaller than mine.
3) Black nail polish
2) Those shoulders!
1) The waxed eyebrows

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Search For Boxes

I'm moving this weekend. Not far, just downstairs to a bigger apartment.

The funny thing about this whole thing has been my obsession with finding boxes. Over the weekend, I went to Target and asked if they had boxes in the back that I could steal. After talking to several people, I get the story that they don't save boxes at all - if they are unloading and you see an empty box out in the store, thats up for grabs but anything else you are S.O.L.

As I walked out of the store, I saw a big dolly full of boxes in the Gardening department. I ran over there only to find that all the boxes were wet. DAMN! This does me no good. I try talking to these two guys in the Gardening department to see if they knew of any boxes hiding elsewhere but that was a dead end. As you can see - I'm one of those people that if I don't like the answer someone gives me, I try to find someone that will tell me what I want to hear.

So last night after work and school, Jake and I make our way to Target to buy more packing tape and trashbags for the move. Upon our arrival, I see them unloading merchandise in the Pet Department. Now, I dont know if teaching my child the stealthy moves needed to steal boxes from the big bad Tar-Jay monster are going to serve him in life, but stepping back and seeing us running through the stores lugging around about 5 boxes, was quite comical. At least I'll have that story to tell him later on in life.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Thrill of Victory and The Agony of Defeat

On Sunday, I was cheering the Raiders on to win in OT only to watch them get robbed of their victory when the Broncos's coach (the bastard) called a timeout as Janikowski, the kicker, was kicking a 52 yard field goal (which made it). After everyone calmed down, they redid the play with the ball hitting the goal post - not even on the side, but right on top! Broncos went on their own drive to score a field goal and win the game. (Sorry to be rehashing this Derry, SO SORRY!)

Tonight, I watched the Dodgers, up 8-7 in the bottom of the ninth and two outs, give up a walkoff homerun with a man on first base. I screamed at the tv (and Seito) and nearly cried.

What is it about competitive sports that allow us to get so emotional? I know I'm going to get really bad this year with the Kings. They traded ways their strong veteran players (I still haven't forgiven them for trading Matty Nostrom, even if it was for Jack Johnson), resigned used up players (cough - ROB BLAKE-cough), and now we have to deal with the damn Duck fans rubbing the Stanley Cup in our faces? Yeah, I dont know if I'll be able to handle all that.

But there is hope - I have found it in NINJA WARRIOR! Jacob and I (and yesterday I found out, my parents) are hooked on this tv show on G4. I've been talking up this show for a bit and tonight I had to add it to my TiVo season pass. Kids - this show is CLASSIC. Ninja Warrior is an obstacle competition show in Japan. G4 slaps some subtitles on it and instant entertainment. The show, I believe has been on for about 10 years, and in those 10 years only 2 people have successfully beaten the course - 2 people. Of course, my favorite part is watching the people fail in the very first leg of the obstacle course.

So with the downfall of our favorite sports teams, I urge you to try out Ninja Warriors. As an inspiration and sample of the degree of difficulty, I present you with Makoto Nagono, 1 of 2 men to complete the course. But when you watch, pay attention to all the potentials of hilarity available to you. Where this man has succeeded; many, many, have failed...most quite miserably. ENJOY!

Weekend Wrap-Up

Ahh, the weekend. The time that we all look forward to all week to enjoy time with friends, family, and the couch.

This past weekend was a quite a doozy for yours truly and the Jakeman.

Friday night, I chaperoned Jake's first date. Yes, I said Jake's first date. I wish I was exaggerating but alas, I am not. The kid actually went up to his "girlfriend" and asked her out to the movies. Here is a picture of the cute little couple:

We decided to go the El Capitan and watch "The Jungle Book" on the big screen. If you havent seen a movie at El Capitan, you really have to make an effort to do so - it is so much fun. Before the beginning of the movie, they have this guy come out with Baloo and do a little sing-a-long of "The Bare Necessities" and "I Wanna Be Like You" for everyone to get into the mood.
I swear, Disney movies are the best. A part of me really hates to admit it, but its true. I never noticed how many different movies the voice actors did in that time period. I know at least 3 people from the Jungle Book were in Robin Hood - just an observation.

After the movie, we head home because we have a long day on Saturday planned. What wasn't planned was this huge allergy/sinus headache that woke me up at 4:30am. So I was up, catching up on my TiVo watching when 7am rolled around and I had to get Jake up and ready for the day.

We had four things to do that day:
1) A friend of mine was running in a mini marathon, and much to his dismay, I was going to go support him, ok - yell at him to run faster
2) Go to the LA Kings Open House to buy tickets for the home opener and watch the open practice
3) Meet up with a friend at Santa Monica pier for lunch and a play date with Jake and her daughter (seriously, how many dates does my kid have in one weekend?)
4) Meet up with a group from for a bonfire at Dockweiler Beach

So off to do the yelling and screaming first at the Coliseum. I figure if we get there before the race starts, we can catch him early and then take off for the Kings stuff. So we get there right when the race started - we walked all over and found a map of the race. If I had been able to find a map of this thing before that morning, I would have parked my car near Staples Center and went on Figueroa to cheer him on because it got pretty close to where I was supposed to be. Instead Jake and I waited at the end of the race. We got back just in time to see the really fast people get in. Now, I wasnt sure how fast my friend runs and since they were having concerts along the race route, I wasnt sure if he was opting to stop along the route to enjoy the music. So I had no gauge to find out when he would be passing. Jake, learning that he must listen to his mother, is starting to complain about how hungry he is even though he passed up 3 offers for breakfast and is getting ancy for the hockey portion of the day. I stalled as much as I could and after seeing a kid with a mohawk, a dude wearing a leather vest and leather shorts, and a blind man all cross the finish line before my friend - I figured it was time to jet. Later I found out, that if we had waited about 10 minutes, we would have seen him pass. Oh well - next time we will bring the signs.

So off to the Kings event. Now, this marathon closed off a bunch of streets and made it such a freaking headache to get to Staples Center. Finally we arrive and go inside to see the practice. This is the place where I would put the really cool up close pictures I would have taken of the Kings players being 3 feet away from me. But, my battery died. :(

After the hockey thing, we jump in the car and head to Santa Monica. We walked along the beach towards the pier and had lunch at Hot Dog on a Stick. Amazingly enough, I had never eaten at the OG Hot Dog on a Stick. Those things never disappoint. We meet up with my friend and had a good time letting the kids play and chatting. After a while, I realize that maybe I should take my shirt off and just be in my tank top for the heat and tanning purposes. Later that night, when I look in the mirror, I will see that I took my shirt off a little too late. Oh well. I love going to the beach. Its one of those simple pleasures in life that I truly love. Jake and I sat and made a sand castle, ok I tried to make a sand castle, he decided that Megatron was going to destroy it.

After a while, we decided to blow off the bonfire and head home. We ended up getting chinese take out and prepared ourselves to watch the Kings preseason game against the Ducks - only to find out that they weren't showing it. I think we ended up watching some saved episodes of Mythbusters and called it a night. Happily - the day was over and the recovery had begun. My arms are itchy from the sun and now I have wierd tan lines - DAMMIT!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Embracing Your Inner Nerd

If you know me pretty well, you know that I love me some trivia. And to appease that love, I created a group on for other trivia lovers. Our first Trivia Night came and I walked away with one of those "only Melissa" stories that will live my blog.

I was unsure how my first meetup event was going to go since 1) I had never hosted one and 2) I was attending my very first Pub Quiz nights. After failing to get some friends to join me for moral support, I faced it alone. I get there and introduced myself to the Quizmaster. He tells me that he had heard my group was coming and that as far as he knew, they hadn't shown because most people were regulars. Now, do you remember that feeling of being the new kid in school (or work) and for as much as you tried to be friendly the others well, weren't? Thats how it was for me for the first 30 minutes of being there. I walked over to people's tables to ask if the seat was taken and they would grab it and say "TAKEN!" or "Expecting someone!" I seriously have never seen people so wound up over trivia, and let me also say that it was just the beginning of that.

I walk to an open area of the bar and the Quizmaster graciously gets another table to be set up for me and my group, if anyone would show up. As the table is getting set up, this guy taps me on the arm and asks if I'm Melissa - I say yes and its my first group member Jack! I'm so happy to see someone show up! And all of a sudden, the Quizmaster and Jack are chatting it up like old college buddies. I soo love trying to figure out conversations that I'm not a part of. Jack is talking about meeting Brad and the Quizmaster is saying that he might be there and so might someone else. And Jack is talking about how he hadn't seen him since Millionaire....wait - what? Millionaire? Now I was putting the pieces together....apparently Jack had tried out for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and some people from the quiz show rounds show up to this pub quiz. Then the Quizmaster looks at me and says "Do you know who this guy is?" And I say, "Well no actually, we are just meeting tonight but I'm assuming its Jack, right?" And the Quizmaster says, "Not just any Jack - but Jack!" Yeah, apparently, Jack is a 5 time Jeopardy Champion. WOOHOO!!! So we grab our table and all of a sudden Jack is talking it up with some guy. He introduces me to Bob. Bob makes a little joke asking if Jack and I are on a date. Then I ask Bob how he knows Jack. Apprently, Bob met Jack at the Jeopardy Tournament of Champions. Then Bob asks me if he can join my trivia team. Pull up a fucking chair Bob! I gots me 2 Jeopardy champions! By this time, 3 of my other meetup members have shown up and the games have begun!

Some of the questions that were asked, I kind of knew but most of this time a question was posed and I sat there sort of going "Ummm, uhhhhh - yes, I agree with that." But then, my moment finally came when the question was asked:

Quizmaster: "What primetime soap opera is narrated by Sean Astin and features characters named Flower, Zaphod, Hannibal, and Daisy?"
Me (jumping up and down in my seat) "MEERKAT MANOR! MEERKAT MANOR!"

I was proud of myself for that one. Sure, those Jeopardy champions could name the exact calendar year that the United States didn't have a Vice President in office but they didn't know Meerkat Manor. I needed my moment of glory, albeit a small one.

We ended up in a three way tie for 1st place and had to go through 3 tie breaker questions before coming in 2nd place. We wouldn't have been able to win anyways because we had 9 people on our team and the maximum allowed is 6, a fact that someone on another team kept reminding us of constantly.

We have our next meetup for trivia night in Pasadena next week and I'm really looking forward to it. I'll be happy to learn new things and get to know my new gang of fellow trivia lovers. In addition, I am a competitive person, I have no shame in admitting this. I have been mocked for it many many times. Its good to take the brain out and exercise it every now and then and see what your limits are. However, this night proved that 1) I need to commit even more useles knowledge to memory and 2) I will NEVER be good enough to be on Jeopardy. That dream has died, I will now concentrate on getting on Wheel of Fortune.

Thursday, September 06, 2007


For my birthday, Jacob decided to invite me to Disneyland. What a great lad. I'm sure the fact that I had to pay for our entrances, drive, and be the adult in all this never quite crossed his mind.

A few days before our trip, he informed me of a few "requirements":

1) We have to be there before it opens
2) We have to ride Star Tours
3) We have to ride Pirates of the Carribbean
4) We have to go on the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
5) We have to go to Mickey's Toontown but not go on the Roger Rabbit ride
6) Under no circumstances are we to go on Its A Small World

Its a miracle what waving a trip to the Magic Kingdom would do to a 5 year old. In the past year, I could not for the life of me get Jacob to wake up before 8am. But this fateful day, the boy was ready to go at 6:45am. The park opens at 9am and we arrived about 8:40am. Growing up, my family would get there early and I think we would be with about 75 people tops waiting for the park to open. This morning - there must have been about 500 people there!

Look for yourself:
Crap! Jake was adament about going on these subs. I'm actually rather excited about them myself and trying to use my Disneyland knowledge (I know this park like the back of my hand) I figure there is one way to get to the subs quickly - lie and cheat my way to the front. So I grab Jake's hand and we start weaving our way through the line into the Penny Arcade. I figure I can go through the shops and land close to the front of the line and then make a beeline to Tomorrowland. Smart plan - right? We get to the candy store to find that the other store is closed - darn! So we head out with the people and formulate another plan. I got it! I whisper to Jake to play along and I pick him up. I start waving to an imaginary person and start excusing myself through the crowd

Me: "Pardon me, I have to get to the rest of my party. My mom is over there."
Jake: "Grandma's not here! Mommy, you shouldn't lie like that."

D'oh! Damn the good upbringing I'm instilling on my child. By the time all this happened, the park was about to open. So we stood our ground and I put Jake down I told him we were going to make a run for it. The park opens and we go.

Now - I have never in my life felt a level fear from being run over by stollers AND wheelchairs as I did that morning. Jake and I are running and I'm using all of the shortcuts I can think of to get the entrance of Nemo Subs. We get there and they are directing us to another entrance....near the entrance to Matterhorn - we are screwed! We make our way there and not only is the like about 250 people deep, but the ride opening is delayed. Jake and I decide to book it and get on Star Tours. I love 5 minute waits.

For the rest of the day, the wait for Nemo never went below one hour. Needless to say, we never made it. We rode Autopia twice, went on the teacups, and covered everything in Toontown (except for Roger Rabbit of course) before 11am.

For lunch, I wanted to surprise Jake and we ate at the Blue Bayou. For those of you who don't know the restaurant, its located in Pirates of the Carribbean. When you get on the ride and look to your left as you depart the dock, you will see people eating...that would be us. I swear, that restaurant is the bomb. I don't care that its overpriced even more than everything else - it rules.

After our lunch, we work it off by heading over to The Pirate's Lair and then jumped on the Explorer Canoes. No matter how old I get, I will always think those canoes are great. Especially when its about 100 degrees and you're stupid enough to be at Disneyland. Jake had a particularly good time too!
After the canoes, we headed back to Tomorrowland and noticed something going on at the Plaza Pavilion. They had this activity that was starting in about 10 minutes called Junior Chef. We hung around and low and behold, they have people come out and teach kids how to make cookies. We even got free cookies! Anything free in Disneyland is a high five in my book. Here are some pictures of Jake doing his chef thing.
The day finally came to and end and we had to throw one more ride in. Gotta ride the rockets!
I have to say that taking a kid (or kids) to Disneyland is so draining. I was praying to go home at 3pm and practically accused Mary Poppins of giving me attitude. Ok, I did accuse her, but not to her face, on a text to a friend. I wouldn't go at it with Mary Poppins - Daisy Duck, no problem, but not Mary Poppins.