Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Whiny Witches and Grumpy Ghosts

It's almost Halloween, and my whines this week are not scary, really, but more trick than treat.

I'm traveling at the end of the week, to speak in front of college students, for whom I am supposed to be relevant and engaging. Urp. Still putting my materials together. Still waiting to hear back if I'll have live internet or need to run on screen shots and downloaded movies. Noticing that I am disrupting three days of my life to give a 40 minute talk.

And meanwhile we're doing a big project at work for a high-profile client which is a leetle bit of a stretch for us (read: OMG why did we agree to do this?). My wonderful boss, who can work miracles on her average days, is having some far below average days for good reasons and has asked me to pick up the task. Urp again.

Life will go on. The hotel in College Town claims to have internet access. And I have all of you to commiserate.

How does your week look? More tricks or more treats?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Late Awards, but not so late as predicted...

Thanks for your patience, Pixies! Your hostess has concluded that the Albatross Project will not be finished by tomorrow. AW: overnight mail. W: darned thing is not done.

'Tis the season for wacky-looking kidlet photos! Picture's Worth a Thousand Words Awards to Neighbor Lady, whose son gets a do-over but he promises not to smile for that one, either; Amy, who gave Tater an unfortunate haircut just in time for the one-year photos; Liz, whose son acquired an attractive facial bruise right before pictures; Madeleine, whose sweetie was all primped and gorgeous by the time she discovered the note saying photos would be a few weeks later, and the rescheduled date was pizza day; and Purple Kangaroo, whose kids have a talent for facial mishaps immediately before photos.

Purple Kangaroo also wins an Elevated Risk of Mullet Award for her additional photo observation: "and the likelihood [of non-photogenic injuries] is quadrupled if they're actually being in a wedding party." But we appreciate the silver lining offered by PK: these photos will be the interesting ones in 30 years.

Another Elevated Risk of Mullet Award goes to Madeleine, who advocates comfort in clothing, but remarks, "It helps to have no sense of style."

Itchy Shirts and Tags Awards to Liz, whose son wanted to look spiffy for the school photo, and sacrified comfort for handsomness; Esperanza, whose mom still removes all tags; Sarah at ratatat, who reports an additional problem with the tagless printing inside garments; and Purple Kangaroo, who solves the tagless printing itch by wearing afflicted undergarments inside out. Voila!

And speaking of undergarments, is there any single item of clothing more likely to bring out the whines than bras? I think not. Foundations Awards to all with undergarment woes and joys this week, including Liz, Sue, Emily, Esperanza, Purple Kangaroo, Elizabeth, and Madeleine.

Old Skool Award to Madeleine, for "total lack of motivation, plenty of work to do." Hearty agreement from several sectors of Pixieland. Also to Amy, whose cell phone died.

Bodily Fluids Award to Emily, whose cat jumped on the bed and woke her up, so he could barf. On the bed. Yuckerino.

Best Anti-Whine Award to Elizabeth, who reports a grueling marathon of work and family and etc., concluding, "Halloween costumes are my husband's problem."

Cutie Pie Award to Esperanza, who feared she was an ogre for not costuming her little Sweet Baboo. And the verdict is: not an ogre! And Sweet Baboo is a cutie pie just as she is! Also sending good Pixie wishes for Sweet Baboo's quick recovery from whatever that bug is.
Go, Baby! Award to Sarah at ratatat, whose baby is really truly walking!
Good Idea Award to Sue, whose congregants are just bursting with ideas that they want someone else to implement. Now. Madeleine helpfully suggested the Good Idea Rule -- you want it, you're responsible -- but Sue and Esperanza contend that rule is somehow suspended in church, along with the Grownups Should Act Like Grownups Rule.

Bumper Sticker Award to Sue as well, for her envy of a B*tch On Board sticker.

Medical Trauma Award to Neighbor Lady, whose blood draw left her with a huge ouchie.

Political Trauma Award to Liz, who reports that the insurance lobbyist was confirmed for a health council. Yikes. The Cluestick Posse is hereby dispatched to deal with the responsible parties.

Love and hugs to Sue, whose friend was just diagnosed with lymphoma. Also to Purple Kangaroo, who is searching for a new therapist for AJ, and to Sarah, whose daughter is also struggling.
Thank you for playing this week! See you next week, when your host will be the fabulous Madeleine!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Procrastination Edition

Wednesday comes early this week, and will likely finish late. Yes, I'm procrastinating at this very moment, because my brain is so fried that it might explode if I do any more work today. The rest of the week looks about the same. I have to make up for pitiful progress on a piece of a project by cramming my little heart out this week. My behindness wasn't totally procrastination; other stuff going on, yadda ya. But the deadline, she looms.

Maybe I'll use my insomnia to cover some of the reading? Time will tell. At least I got round one of another bothersome something done today, and someone else will be wrestling that one this week. The office cats are helping a lot by being cute. I may have to fire one for bathing on my paperwork, though.

Passing the chips and guacamole. What are your whines and anti-whines this week?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Hippo Birdie, Two Ewe!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to KLee and Neighbor Lady! We are tossing confetti and passing a variety of cakes in celebration! Everyone is invited to sing and dance!
Let's talk about the age thing, shall we? I'm pulling out the nerf cluestick for KLee's Offspring, because 13 is approaching ground zero for "I Know Everything." Emily is 47; I am 52; my Fabulous Aunt will be 71 tomorrow! As my dad used to say on birthdays, "It's better than the alternative." And I say, 39 is a very good age.
The Cluestick Posse is hereby activated for duty as follows, with adult-style cluesticks: [1] Purple Kangaroo's daughter's idiot therapist; [2] all the parents who have failed to RSVP to Elizabeth's son's birthday party; and [3] Jenevieve's nasty vet school instructor.
A special Cluestick Wedgie (TM) is also on the agenda for Debangel's beloved, who shows off his loose pants as Debangel expands to approximately the shape of a whale. (Thanks to Sue for that suggestion!)
Jenevieve also receives the Terrible, No Good Day Award, as suggested by Neighbor Lady. Glad the grade will not really matter, but we are all unhappy with the Dermo Guy's teaching methods and lack of general decency.
Elevated Risk of Mullet Award to Amy, for "facebook is broken today. keeps telling me i have no friends. :( x 2" Runner up to Debangel, who explains to the babe-to-be that the bladder kicking must stop, or "Mama is *not* buying you that pony."
We're gonna have to cluestick Sue's husband for this, but he receives an Honorary Mullet for unwanted commentary before coffee: "Folks, we are seeing the rare Three Dwarf morning. Sleepy, Dopey, AND Grumpy. Approach the subject with care." The prize is no coffee for as long as it takes to stop being so "amusing" at oh-dark-thirty.
Old Skool Award goes to Emily, who speaks for us all with her classic whine about Christmas stuff showing up at the mall weeks before Halloween. What the heck, we're saddled up already, so let's cluestick those mall marketers while we're at it.
SQUEEE! Award to Liz, for two, two, two kinds of squealing! On the AW side, adoring fans of her husband at a debate! And then on the W side, the fan belt.
Wanna Get Away Awards to Sarah at ratatat, dealing with dueling viruses while her husband is out of town, and PK, whose daughter with OCD is not the easiest patient when a virus also strikes. "I am about to run away screaming while also pulling out my hair" sounds about right to us.
Is It Really Too Much to Ask Award to Esperanza, who asked the muddy window guys to please wipe their feet, but fears that the housecleaner's efforts will be undone anyway. (Thanks to Amy for the suggestion.) This award comes with bonus cluesticking.
Basement Follies Award to Madeleine, who had a fun-filled long weekend cleaning up so the asbestos people can do their thing. Fun fun fun. And the Runner Up is Sarah at ratatat, whose Dad is yelling at his basement project, bringing up some of Those Issues.
You Can Do It Award to KLee, who is doing great in her class! Yay!
Extra servings of chocolate cake to Espreanza's Mini-Baboo and Debangel's daughter-to-be, whose birthdays will not be for a good safe while if the Pixies have anything to say about it. Esperanza, we think the chocolate cake has worked well so far; boo on worrying about weight gain for now.
Best Dramatic Interpretation of a Complaint Mama Didn't Know She Had Award to Esperanza's Sweet Baboo, acting out Mama's back pain. Ouch!
THANKS A LOT, Aunt Flo Awards to Elizabeth, Liz, Neighbor Lady, and anyone else similarly afflicted.
Here's hoping that all who are suffering illness and adversity see a swift, painless, fair, and happy resolution.
Thanks for playing! See you again next week!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Shake it, shake it, shake it up, baby!

Happy Thanksgiving to our Canadian friends! Happy three-day-weekend to some [but not all] in the U.S.

This week's festivities are brought to you by the 20 year anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake. My kids were itty-bitty at the time, and we were staying with my sister in San Jose. We sang a lot, as we made sure the gas was off, got supplies, cleaned up the glass, righted furniture, and so on. Twist and Shout was a favorite, because we were shakin'! My son also kept singing the Happy Birthday song, because of the candles we had while the power was out. Wooo!

So, I'll just lead off with a huge anti-whine: horrible things happened in that quake, and we were so very lucky. I will just never forget how wonderful people were, coming together during that disaster. We were so busy trying to keep the kids calm and take care of the basics that we did not even hear for hours about how bad it was. My beloved was still in Japan, and I couldn't reach him until the next day to say we were OK. The singing, that helped a lot.

What's shaking with you this week?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Forestry Division

This weeks awards are brought to you by trees everywhere. Winners of the "Timber!" Awards are Madeleine, who complains that a tree fell on her internet, and Elizabeth, who reports that a branch fell on her car.
Old Skool Award to Emily, whose new washer is bigger and she has lost her laundry rhythm. "And laundry used to be the one thing I could count on," she laments. Runner up to Liz, whose pants hem came undone.
Elevated Risk of Mullet to Sue, for her complaint about a breakfast meeting: "There is no hell, by the way, anywhere else. It's right here on earth, and it serves up eggs." And also to Esperanza, for her brilliant suggestion that neither sick people nor others should have to clean puke: "Puke should henceforth be self-cleaning."
What Twice Was Lost is Now Found, Again Award to Amy, who located the tickets this time in a Trivial Pursuit box. Whining works!
Hell's Kitchen Award to Neighbor Lady, who tried again to make pad thai, once again without edible results, and then the garbage disposal died while clearing the mess. Such that emergency plumbing was required. Ack!
There is much competition in the bodily fluids category, snot division, this week! Esperanza celebrates her Sweet Baboo's mastery of a favorite developmental milestone, blowing her own nose! Emily complains that she has a runny nose and it is sore.
The Cluestick Posse is saddling up for Liz, who righteously whines that an insurance lobbyist was appointed to a health council; and KLee, whose school is in desperate need of repairs but was apparently removed from the list of schools to benefit from a tax measure passed two years ago. Unacceptable! After that, they'll swing by the post office to nab that person who parked blocking the drive-up mailbox when Emily wanted to use it.
Many thanks to Jenevieve for the cheesecake, and the cuteness report on Hosea.
Tell Us More Award to KLee, who joined the whines about pedestrians darting out from between cars with the intriguing observation that she nearly killed a celebrity that way.
Swift recoveries to all who are suffering from illnesses. Hope Elizabeth's mom and dad are OK.
Thanks for playing! See you next week!

Monday, October 5, 2009

In which Ms. Manners addresses the automotive public

I am mostly chained to my desk this week, but for the occasional errand. On this morning's break from the home office, other citizens reminded me of some enduring whines, and I didn't even have to get on the freeway. I'm sure you commuters and busy persons have more, but here is a starter list of Road Whines:

* That Stop Sign? Just because you are right on the fireplacing bumper of the car that stopped before you doesn't mean you get to speed on through as soon as they get going.

* Turn Signals. Use them. Srsly.

* Pedestrians: We love you! Don't break our hearts by dashing out from behind a parked car. Don't amble down the middle of the street when there is a sidewalk.

* Speeding by a preschool? Today's your lucky day, since the motorcycle cop was there to deliver a message. HA!

* Double-parked delivery trucks when there is curb space available: I do not favor violence, but sometimes I dream of citizen complaints via paintball [if that wouldn't make me crash while trying to change lanes].
Edited to add: don't get me started on those people on the freeways -- the speed demons who think tailgating plus swift unsignaled lane changes and rude gestures make them King of the Road, especially if they are also conducting personal care and/or yelling at their brokers and/or significant others on the cell phone. These are a few reasons why I love public transit.

What's whiney and anti-whiney by you this week?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Awards! I shouldn't have worn my flannel-lined jeans to the parade edition

Started out as a good idea, but was soon soaked in leg sweat. Ewww. However, our float ROCKED and our crew was both much larger and more enthusiastic than the incumbant's. I ran around doing my DQ schtick and MM smiled and waved.

On to the awards!
Jenevieve gets a special award all her own for dispensing long-distance veterinary advice as needed. Vednesday Vet? YOU ROCK.

Esperanza wins a case of DEET for her Sweet Baboo's adventures in Mosquito Land.

Madeleine wins the Kanye West Award for having to listen to a "mushy pop love song on eternal repeat"

Elizabeth wins the How Do You Spell Relief? L-I-V-E-R-T-R-A-N-S-P-L-A-N-T Award. We're so glad that your mom is recovering!

The Cluestick Posse is being sent out to Purple_Kangaroo's daughter's therapist who has had a massive case of Epic Fail. Also, P_K's dog was sick and is now on the mend, see Jenevieve's award, above. Also her church and her family are totally inspiring.

Sending love and supportive thoughts to Sue's sister.

Sending earplugs to the many of you who host band practice. You are better spouses and parents than I am.

Sending resounding cheers to KLee for her aunt's recovery! YAY!

Best Anti-whine Award goes to Esperanza:
"Antiwhine from me today: Went outside to find sprinkler that was not working, water gushing across driveway. Antiwhine? Yes. Because Sweet Baboo said, "ater! ater! and tromped through it leaving sweet little footprints across the driveway." Two things she couldn't do six weeks ago. I am so thankful for her recent progress. And her birthday is tomorrow!"
Sending a case of Elmer's Glue-All to DebAngel (who brings the bodily fluids this week) to fasten her butt to the couch. Listen up, still gestating baby! YOU STAY RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE FOR ANOTHER TWELVE WEEKS! You hear? And Deb, no more bodily fluids until 38 weeks, okay?

Amy, buy the food and don't feel guilty.

P_K's NLASS gets the Elevated Risk of Mullet this week for mishearing "This is (Name), (Baby Name)'s dad". Wow.

Hugs for those with financial, familial, professional, and other woes. KLee, hugs for your co-worker. Margalit, thinking of your family.

That's it. See you all next week! And Oh! BTW! We had more postings this week than any since the first week we went up here (h/t Kathy A.)! Mwah!!!