Friday, March 31, 2006


Catching up on the most recent ep of Survivor this evening, it was driving me nuts trying to think of who Crazy Shane reminded me of, and I just figured it out. Remember Charles De Mar from Better Off Dead?

P.S. It turns out Crazy Shane has actually starred in a movie of his own in 2002, a gay indie film called Luster... All righty then. I'd still watch out for him.


I've been on quite a reality show roll lately, but I simply can't help myself. I must recognize my most recent fascinations in TV Character Land:

For the Duo I'd Actually Like to Meet and Hang Out With award, as well as the Best T-shirts Ever award: BJ & Tyler, "The Amazing Race 9." These Californian hippies are downright goofy, through and through, as they "travel in a race around the world." From what the camera shows, they seem never to be in a bad mood, and in fact, they're always having a darn good time. They're friendly, they jump around and dance a lot, they wear orange pants. They're all about the good karma. And the other night when they came in first place at yet another Pit Stop, one wore a t-shirt that said, "Bowling," and the other said, "Moms." I simply cannot convey the brilliance and entertainment value in this "Amazing Race 5" shout-out.

For Possibly the Most Pompous Asshat to Hit the Television Airwaves this Century, I nominate: Stephen from "Top Chef." Who does this guy think he is? I cannot stand his smug, smug face and want to punch it often and with great force. Every, and I mean every Quick-Fire Challenge, he smirks in his confessional and says something to the effect of, "When I looked around at everyone else's dishes, I felt that mine was far superior." Note that he has only won exactly one Q-F Challenge to date, and nearly got his Pompous Ass booted off the show last week. Condescending, egotistical, annoyingly obsessed with the best wine to go with each of his dishes, and--oh, yeah, 24 years of age, Stephen gets my vote for Top Turd.

For the Crazy is as Crazy Does award: Crazy Crazy Shane from "Survivor Panama: Exile Island." This guy doesn't even look quite right. Did you see how he was eating rice off that spatula? My dogs have more finesse when approaching their food bowls. Even Bender. Shane decided to quit smoking right before going on Survivor, a pure stroke of genius. Because you can't smoke when you're on an island, right? Well, for the most part, other than when you randomly win a reward challenge that allows you to eat a big meal with some of the locals who happen to have some cigarettes on them, yes. But, just because you will have no access to cigarettes for up to 39 days does not mean this is a good idea. You are also going to have limited access to food, clean drinking water, and a good night's sleep. You will also be playing for a million dollars in a game of strategy and strength. Dude, now would not be the time. So can we chalk up all or most of Shane's bizarrity to nicotine fits? Well, sadly, no. The Casaya tribe kept Shane around as part of their alliance, figuring he'd be easy to knock off later. Now some of them seem to be regretting their decision. Two words, people: Loose Cannon. (And watch this sucker win the million bucks.)

Lastly (for now), is the Damn, You're a Piece of Work, but I Love Watching You Anyway award: Oh, Jonathan Antin, of course it's you. Do you feel like tearing up, man? Is this award just a huge deal? I know man, I'm with ya--we'll talk about it at the therapist's office this week and get through it together. So, "Blow Out" is now in its third season, and this time around we get to follow Jonathan in his daily life as he gets ready to launch his hair product worldwide, adjusts to being a new father, and as always, cuts great heads of hair. And it's all about Great Hair. You've got to admire his level of confidence, anyway, and the level of seriousness with which he says things like, "I love the smell of hair product in the morning." And the level of fear he inspires in virtually everyone he works with. It's crazier than Shane. But, he does get, like, $500 a haircut, and a whole lot more for house calls. Obscene? Yes, yes it is.

Sufficiently disgusted.

I finally decided to clean the kitchen windowsill, that space between the window and the storm window that can get kind of gross after awhile. It was gross when we moved in, and I was just too lazy to get to it. Basically, there was some dirt, and the space was littered with what I thought were..."plant pieces." Like, tree debris? Stuff falls from trees all the time, right? Oh, penelope, you are so naive.

First of all, there is no tree by the kitchen window. There's a tree just past the deck that's in front of the window, but it's a good ways away. The debris would have to perform some fancy tricks to fly into that windowsill space.

Secondly, those were bugs. Little bug carcasses, of all varieties. Deader than proverbial doornails. And for who knows how long.

One word: crunch.

Ew, ew, ew, ew, ew. Perhaps I shall write a bug-inspired haiku.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Oh, Another Day and No Plague

Things to discuss:
-figuring out where a photo came from on my phone- oh yah, i'm sure i was going to post about dave&busters like a month ago.
-CentralCasting called me for work (this never! happens) on a pilot with the quote "the director picked you"... right. i said, but i'm a brunette now. that's okay she said... right.
-still no news from the job.
-plauges, oh i meant plagues... not unlike plaque? man the english language is rough
-why would i drop the "h" in words? am i british at 'eart?... when i say "_uman"...
-my cousin calling me at 11 to talk but being exhausted and mumbling everything. true i forgot to call him back an hour earlier but still
-not calling people during their favorite shows.
-not having the heart to tell people that not only am i a hermit, i don't have money bcs i don't have a job so therefore spending $10 on a movie that might only be "good" or "okay" or "moderately entertaining/enjoyable", when i could be spending that on food is painful in the extreme. (sometimes)
-going from sinus infection (viral) to slight bouts of dizzyness

Wednesday, March 29, 2006



Tamilee Webb, You Evil, Evil Woman, You

Dear Tamilee,

I had forgotten how scary you are. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad for the workout. Sort of. Channel 180-something on the digital cable is Exercise On Demand, yet further justification for my "luxury" of a cable bill: I don't pay for a gym membership, I just change the channel and pick one of the workouts, all in the convenience of my living room. But Tamilee, I haven't worked out regularly since like, June. Since morning sickness and pregnancy in general made me allergic to exercise. I mean, that's the last thing any sane person wants to do while pregnant, right? You wear sweatpants a lot, sure, but you're not actually supposed to sweat. Your body's doing enough work, manufacturing a human; therefore, you shouldn't be expected to expend more energy than it takes to manage the remote control. (And, on some nights, your husband should be responsible for even that.)

So, Tamilee, after months and months, I'm trying to ease back into the world of fairly regular exercise. But you have no mercy, do you. Pain does not exist in your dojo, does it. All I did was one flipping 10-minute session with you this morning, and already I can tell that getting out of bed tomorrow will be interesting. I'm beginning to reconsider this whole "Buns of Steel" notion. Perhaps "Buns of Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil" will do.

See you in a few days again, I guess.
Penelope in Pain

And They Haven't Called Me Yet.

Good morning. the sun is shining and someone is singing, "i can see clearly now, the rain is gone. i can see all the obstacles in my way..." but then they can't think of the rest of the lyrics and they go get water.

As we speak i'm eating Joe'O's from TraderJoes mixed with some granola and flaxseed- which just remind me of those little bugs that get into cereal and pastas to begin with. Ew. yes, ew. Oh well, it's mostly all low in sugar. I think i have a total of 6 sugar grams... but i didn't count the milk. and i'm certainly not going to walk all-the-way into the kitchen just to tell you.

Today productivity is doubtful- i say this so i'll be happily surprised if I accomplish something.

So last night i was watching a S&TC and the russian is all talking about how Paris is waiting with baited breath. and i was like wait, holy crap that is NOT a positive. And I was really excited bcs I liked how he turned the phrase and I hadn't really thought of it that way before or lately- who knows... bcs, man, now i need to get my hand on a transcript. in the context of how the russian was talking it seemed to denote that Paris had baited it's breath- as in luring him like bear baiting? crap. is that the phrase? where as the original meaning of "bated breath" which is, of course, from the Shakespeare... which means a sort of state in which you almost stop breathing through terror, awe, extreme anticipation, or anxiety... um yes, right? bate is to decrease or lessen (so says Merriam)... anyway, nevermind. "with bated breath" it's all just too much. although i will give you many points if you can tell me what "wigs on the green" means...

i will one day get myself the OED... ooo or maybe an online subscription, but you see ive always wanted a badass old school book stand.... that's totally on my list for when i have a job... but behind: paint room plum/eggplant, go to nicaragua, buy belated presents, buy um, non specified clothes and get a manicure in a true measure of pointless excess.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

a little 'bout Mendacious

4 Pesky Jobs, but blips in my life
1. Camp Counselor, Alaska (freeing but so full of drama- damn those backwoods)
2. Human Resourses Assistant at JBL (sucked ass)
3. Bookseller, Barnes & Noble and Borders (made me turn into evil Mendacious)
4. 'Goverment Cheese' Loaf
5. I could go on but really they all suck ass, except for that one time when I was a stage manager and none of the actors were being actors and that one time i was a directors assistant... okay my jobs haven't been all bad. there's hope, there's hope for the next one. which i find out about this week.
6. Oh and I have to add- 'Page' at Paramount Studios- aka corporate shill, tourguide, doer of things asked.

4 Movies I would watch over and over
1. Clue (I really can and do watch this movie over and over. I don't know why)
2. Office Space (perfect summation of my life in temp jobs, Clockwatchers-if i owned a copy is a close runner up)
3. Drop Dead Gorgeous (there's something about mockumentaries and this one in particular i can't get enough of. Perhaps it's the musical numbers)
4. Hamlet (Although i haven't engaged this addiction in a while, i have to acknowledge it here- I love the bard and his oft tragic personas.)If not this runners up would be: Royal Tenenbaums, Rushmore and Best in Show oh and Airplane!

4 Places I Have Lived
1. North Hollywood, CA
2. Chicago (Downtown)
3. Chicago (Wrigleyfield)
4. North Hollywood, CA (I would count the couple months in Alaska but I don't want to be obnoxious.)

4 Tv Shows I love to watch
1. Gilmore Girl Reruns (the newer season is a pale runner up)
2. Scrubs
3. My Name Is Earl
4. The Office
6. Anything LAW&ORDER (including reruns in this order: CI, L&O, SVU
7. Veronica Mars
8. Hello, SOUTHPARK!
If I remember/am in the mood/should turn off the Tv and read:
9. Mad Tv reruns
10. The Daily Show
11. The Simpsons (they suck ass now compared to their glory days)
12. ANTM (in reruns)
13. Cheerleader Nation (shh don't tell anyone)
14. If I had the bio channel i'd be watching Jessica Fletcher
15. City Gardener
16. Antique Roadshow
17. Mythbusters
18. When the season is up: Reno 911, Arrested Development (sniff)
19. Monk
20.Occassionally: Anything National Geographic
21. Stupid homeimprovement shows (under diress)
I was tempted to compete with Penelope here but I don't have Tivo so, nor her new and improved baby-excuse. I'm surprised I'm writing and the Tv isn't on. That's the miracle. In my defense I often am emailing while my shows are on or doing art and craft projects in front of the tv. I must be able to indulge and be productive at the same time. or i am nothing! nothing! i tell you! but dust! and worthlessness!

4 Websites visited Daily
1. CNN (it's a morning wake-up thing, don't blame me)
2. Hotmail (mmm i love the mail)
3. My very own The Verse: MTI
4. And usually all my linked blogs and some non-linked ones too (shh)
5. the weather channel website (it's an addiction)

4 Vacation Places
True vacations spots are a bit hard to name, bcs the cool places i've gone have always been attached to something. So i'm going to limit it to "pure vacation"
1. Once a long time ago in a galaxy far away I spent a month going through Europe on a tour
2. Istanbul and Ephesus
3. Chicago
4. New York
5. Wilmington, NC
6. Seattle

4 Foods
1. I do enjoy a grilled Ribeye Steak
2. Grilled Chicken on Sourdough with Grilled Onions, Swiss Cheese and Avacado
3. A really good salad which must involve meat, cheeses, nuts and a variety of lettuces and tasty dressings.
4. Right Now I'm feeling very Pro-Pudding

4 Places I'd Rather Be
1. On a tour in Nicaragua
2. Hiking thru Kaui
3. Touring the Pyramids at Geeza
4. Treeking through a jungle in India (on a tour of course)
5. Visiting Chicago, NewYork and well of course to see the new Penelo-baby
6. At the beach
7. Outside (staring wistfully at it- right now)

To Descanso

Okay Mom and I took yet another trip to another place with flowers in it. It's true that this is all just a bit much. But there was a lilac sale and i wanted mom to buy some lilacs for our yard, although currently we are facing a problem as to where to plant them- but i think we'll overcome this issue. Besides all that i'm finally feeling better and will get to posting about that 1924 plague sooner or later. Besides that, it's raining and i can't do much with all the dripping and the cold... so why not write? We'll see.
angel white lilac 
camilia forest 

A little about penelope

This is one of those email things... I thought I'd play along. And you, mendacious?

1. Customer Service Bitch, for Castle Branch and (obligatory gag) Verizon Wireless
2. Chick who organizes/restocks shelves in craft store
3. Ice Cream Scooper Extraordinaire
4. (Sadly) McDonald's cashier. And can I just say I wasn't very good at it, either. I was That Girl. I couldn't even handle drive-thru.

1. The Breakfast Club
2. About a Boy, if only for the scene where Marcus and his mom play "Killing Me Softly" on the piano and sing along with their eyes closed. SO. Damn. Funny.
3. You've Got Mail (And I have, it's true.)
4. (Currently) She's the Man

1. Vestal, NY
2. Raleigh, NC
3. Chicago, IL
4. Wilmington, NC

1. Survivor
2. Scrubs
3. The Office
4. Grey's Anatomy... Oh, hell. I cannot stop there.*
6. The Surreal Life
7. Blow Out
8. Project Runway
9. Gilmore Girls!!!
10. Martha Stewart, so I can make fun of her in my mind, but also pick up tips. Even though she's the devil.
11. Desperate Housewives
12. Degrassi (Yes!!)
13. The OC (although lately I'm not a fan)
14. Ditto, The Apprentice
15. LOST
16. One Tree Hill, even though I HATE it, and everything it stands for
17. Monk, occasionally
18. Deal or No Deal, even though the following make my skin crawl: a) Howie Mandel, b) Howie Mandel's gleaming chrome dome, c) the suitcase-toting Fem-bot Army, d) the suitcase-toting Fem-bot Army's over-practiced repertoire of facial expressions, which seem to be limited to "My suitcase has $5, eeee, I'm so thrilled, really I am!!!!" and "Ohhhh, my suitcase has $2 million, I'm so so sorry and saaaaaad." And I really don't enjoy watching the show, it's just sort of addictive, and sometimes nothing else is on, and we're there, and it's there... I don't know.
19. Ditto, American Idol
20. Crap, I almost forgot about The Amazing Race
21. Sometimes, Dr. Phil, except lately, it's all a bunch of freaks on there
22. Can't forget about My Name is Earl
23. Related
24. Beautiful People... This list is going downhill very quickly, not to mention revealing just how serious and scary my TV-watching habit has become. Okay, one more:
25. Wheel of Fortune
26. And Jeopardy
27. And Top Chef!!

*In my defense, I do have DVR and fully believe in Efficient Television Viewing. That is, with the power of DVR, I can not only keep track of and record all of my favorite shows, but watch them at any time, when nothing else good is on, and let's face it, this happens a lot. Also, I can fast-forward through commercials. And, I am crocheting a blanket, which I often work on simultaneously while watching TV. And, I do have a baby to feed, and if I don't feel like reading, and there are shows available on the list... We get our money's worth, dammit, it's all I'm saying.

1. Ocean City, NJ, probably every year when I was growing up. And don't make fun. It has THE world's best boardwalk, and that is no lie.
2. London, sort of--do school trips count? I think I just like saying I went to London, because it's probably the coolest place I've ever, ever been, and will probably ever go for a long while. But maybe that's nostalgia talking.
3. Disney World, woohoo!
4. LA, to visit mendacious

1. Yahoo! mail
2. All the blogs listed under Subversive Talent (see sidebar)--okay, that's five, but whatever.
3. to see if I sold anything else, or to add a new design.
4. My bank, since I'm the (albeit sometimes absentminded) Family Banker

1. Pasta, pasta, pasta
3. Chocolate, including but not limited to: M&M's, Milky Way, 3 Musketeers, chocolate chips, ice cream, any dark chocolate, and... I could go on all day.
4. I just realized how cliched this list is for a girl, so I'm going to go ahead and add something random, but also true: mashed potatoes.

1. Please refer to "FOUR PLACES I HAVE BEEN ON VACATION" list, above.
2. Machu Picchu, my stock answer for Places I'd Like to One Day See
3. Paris, but only if I magically learn to speak French on the flight over. They really do not respond well to non-French-speaking folk.
4. The Grand Canyon... or Chi-Town... or a beach in Spain... or Ireland.... or Taco Bell, just because I'm hungry... But "here" is good, too.

Monday, March 27, 2006


Baby as Florida retiree, us as the hooligans who need to get off her property!

Only 218 Days Left!

I'm already brainstorming costume ideas for Halloween 2006. Last year, Scott and I went as Chuck Noland and the volleyball Wilson from Cast Away. With me six months pregnant, the Wilson costume worked out rather well. All I had to do was throw on some yoga pants and this shirt:
This year, I feel compelled to make it a family affair. Here are the ideas I've come up with so far:
1. I'm stealing this from a lady I saw on the Today Show this past Halloween: One of us would be the Empire State Building, and baby would be King Kong "climbing" up the top.

2. The parents as Morticia and Gomez Addams, baby as Uncle Fester.

3. Parents as Amazing Racers, baby as the Travelocity gnome, or (credit mendacious)...

4. Parents as Amelie and her love interest, baby as the gnome.

Any other ideas? Possibly Austin Powers, Felicity Shagwell, and Mini Me, but...nah, too easy. Remember, time is of the essence.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

It's George!

Is anyone out there watching The Surreal Life 6? Can we talk about Alexis Arquette? At first I was like, WTF, who is this guy. Or chick, tranny. I don't know. Then they said she was on The Wedding Singer. It's George!!! I don't know why I find this exciting, but I do. She's going to have transgender surgery soon, apparently. On the show she's rather audacious, and overall, I'm pretty fascinated. Clearly, we have all spent too many years paying attention to David.

And how much do we love Sherman Hemsley? (The other George.) On every season of Surreal Life, there seems to be a Normal One, and typically it's a surprise: Dave Coulier, Carey Hart. Who knew these people would turn out to be the laid-back, fairly levelheaded ones. The emotional "rocks." And this season, Sherman seems to be it. I love that he had to have the single room, and that this was all kind of unspoken. Like, he would have roomed with someone if he absolutely had to, but everyone could tell that he really, really didn't want to, and they just let him have it in the end. Unlike, for instance, the royal fusses that individuals such as Verne Troyer and Charo put up in seasons past to get a room all their own.

Tawny Kitaen, on the other hand, ick. I have to say that in general I know less about this cast than I have casts prior. At least, at the outset, when they announced the cast members, I didn't immediately recognize most of the names (and cheer with shameful glee). But, Whitesnake Video Chick, that's cool. However, she is seemingly the Attention Whore of this cast, and her jealousy of the Playboy chick bleeds from her eyeballs, it's so obvious. I would never have jumped in that pool naked, she says. Whatever, Tawny. Don't act so scandalized. It was for two seconds, and on a dare. You spousal abuser, you.
I love reality TV.

Dear Baby,

If you could go ahead and stop crying for say, two seconds, while mommy types up her blog, that would be great. I love you, and normally I don't mind when you cry, because that's what babies do. But mommy's a wee bit hormonal the past few days, and currently you are hitting a pitch that is making her teeth itchy.

Just a tiny request.


P.S. You're still very cute.

Dear Yahoo! Mail,

If you could go ahead and find advertisers other than Verizon Wireless to flash across the top of the screen whenever I check my email, that would be great. I don't care that they now sell the Razr phone, or that they're still trying to hawk their stupid V-Cast service that no one will ever buy because it's like $15 extra a month slapped onto your bill for the ability to streamline tiny commercials onto your cell phone, and who the hell wants that. Also, they are evil and I hate them.

I know you're in cahoots with them now in y'all's latest venture to take over the world, but seriously. I will never click on their ads unless it's an accident. In fact, I will probably never click on any ad you put up there, but especially not VZW. I think I clicked on Netflix, once, way back when I first started subscribing, and probably you made like, a penny off of that referral. And that's really great. And I know the whole reason the email's free is because of the ads. They do add a little color, a little spark. It's fantastic, really. But if I have to see any ads, I would much rather them be for something like NC State University, just because I went there, and that amuses me.



Saturday, March 25, 2006

Dear TWC,

Hello again, my quasi-evil friend. This week's episode of ANTM, scheduled to air in this area on CBS from 2:37 AM to 3:24 AM Saturday morning, actually aired during the slots slated for Veronica Mars and the show after that, called Cutters, or Cutting, or something. Lucky for you, I DVR'd the entire block of shows, from 2:37 AM to around 5 AM, and managed to catch ANTM in all of its catty, pseudo-glamorous, twig-thin glory.

So, consider yourself lucky, but also warned.


P.S. Good-bye, Kari. You were cute in a long-haired, pouty-lipped Kimber-from-Nip/Tuck kind of way.

Friday, March 24, 2006


Watching the "Creature from the Black Lagoon"
Chewing one piece of 'Cool Green Apple' by Extra.
Contemplating: brushing teeth, flossing, aquatic life, spinal distress, scientology, athiests, writing, how persistence sucks, my apple blossom painting, tomorrow... the weather, are david and mark really lovers? no mark loves what'shername, lilacs yes, tomorrow we shall buy lilacs...

Blog ideas for today: 0
Giant Honeysuckle hedges trimmed today: 1
Chocolate Biscotti consumed:1
Diet Cokes: 2
Cats petted: 1
Different Shoes worn: 2
Tops changed: 3
BBC Programming: 3 (AbFab, The Office... and uh, oh. Creature Comforts.)
Chicken: Zankou and Wendy's Spicy Chicken
Miles Traversed: 24

Thursday, March 23, 2006


So I did something new yesterday. I actually walked along a portion of the LA RIVER that I always pass on the freeway. Granted, it's a bit loud but it was worth it. I spotted ducks and a flock of plovers and uh, lots of trash- which was attached to all the reeds like ornaments from our recent rains. The LA River for me has always been a sad and forlorn reminder of our messed up relationship to nature. I mean we made it concrete, turned it into a storm drain and ignored it. So not cool man. Although that scene in Grease, and all the grafetti art- that's pretty hot. But still. So i get points for exploring- next time it's rollerblades or a bike. Bcs it's hard to ignore the fact that you're actually walking next to the 5 freeway. But apparently it's a very long river so I could technically make it to Long Beach and right across the freeway is the LA Zoo and 4,000 acres of parkland- we've got one of the largest park systems in the country. Ah, Griffith J. Griffith. Good times! Plus we have an equistrian center, and Travel Town! Which has always been an awesome collection of trains. My exuberance is exhausting me and i'm still infected from some nasty bacteria. So i better go convalesce and watch Tv and then maybe water some pots. High times i tell you. High Times! (Not in that way) So if you're ever here- visit the river. It's not just concrete and maybe it'll keep getting better and better- and there will be more ducks and plover and less trash and more trails... here's to hope. (next time i'll take some pics!)

Dear Time Warner Cable,

You must absolutely figure out this whole America's Next Top Model airtime thing. I realize this particular service area does not get UPN, and until UPN and the WB merge into the CB, or the UPNWB, or the WhateverItBe, certain shows like ANTM have to be aired on CBS at weird times. I am grateful CBS even chooses to air them. But, why, Time Warner Cable, why are you screwing with my DVR. TWC-who-is-Not-The-Weather-Channel, I am sad.

If ANTM truly airs on CBS from 1:37 am to 2:34 am on Saturday morning, or whatever bizarro time it is, then please, air the show then. Do not start the episode halfway through said random slot, so that half the ep is cut off, and I never get to see the models make asses of themselves at panel or Tyra dramatically saying goodbye to one of the very beautiful girls standing before her. With only half the ep, I can only guess why the girl with odd eye makeup from New Orleans was eliminated last week. I can only conjecture whether Nigel again likened Furonda the former phone sex operator's "best shot" to a praying mantis. I can be only half a witness to Jade's spectacular displays of egomaniacal bitchiness. And, I might just die without seeing the latest installment of Nicole's Life as a Cover Girl Model. I really might.

TWC, please don't make me wait for the VH1 marathon, I'm begging you. Just talk to my DVR. And this time, tell it the truth.


Dude. Does she look a tiny bit like Voldemort?

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Oh, Susanna

Don't you cry for me... huh, that's all i remember of that song. It is a song right? Sort of like uh that Evita song, don't cry for me argentina... something something. I know a little bit about Evita but only bcs of that Simpsons episode where Lisa bcms the liason btw the students and the teachers. Oh alright, and that movie with Antonio Banderes. But that Susanna guy, hold on, let's investigate.

Oh, I come from Alabama with my banjo On my knee And I'm going to Louisiana, my true love For to see. Well, it rained all night the day I left The weather it was dry The sun so hot, I froze to death Susanna, don't you cry Oh, Susanna! Oh, don't you cry for me For I come from Alabama with my banjo on my knee I had a dream the other night When everything was stil I thought I saw Susanna a-coming down the hill A buckwheat cake was in her mouth A tear was in her eye Says I, I'm coming from the South Susanna, don't you cry Oh, Susanna! Oh, don't you cry for me For I'm going to Louisiana with my banjo On my knee

SO THEN i did some more investigating and it turns out the original lyrics, which i found on a boyscout website, and then on some even more random website that actually had the history, are these: Apparenlty the song was written by some guy named Stephen Foster who was only a teenager at the time and he wrote it for his friends- which may explain the buckwheat cake in the girl's mouth and maybe why he's going to kill a black guy- but i can't be sure. This reference is subtly edited out of the above lyrics. It was written in 1848, and he only got $100 for it and didn't copyright it- died in poverty when he was 38... the song also became an anthem for gold rush miners... who improvised the song... ah, good times. who knew really. who knew. again an example of childhood songs gone awry- like singing about the history of london burning or the plague... nursery rhymes beware.

I came from Alabama wid my banjo on my knee,
I’m g’wan to Louisiana my true love for to see,
It rain’d all night the day I left, the weather it was dry,
The sun so hot I frose to death; Susanna, dont you cry.

Oh! Susanna, Oh! dont you cry for me,
I’ve come from Alabama, wid my banjo on my knee.

I jumped aboard de telegraph, and trabbelled down de ribber,
De Lectrie fluid magnified, and killed five hundred Nigger
De bullgine bust, de horse run off, I realy thought I’d die;
I shut my eyes to hold my breath, Susanna, dont you cry.

Oh! Susanna, Oh! dont you cry for me,
I’ve come from Alabama, wid my banjo on my knee.

I had a dream de odder night when ebery ting was still;
I thought I saw Susanna, a coming down de hill.
The buckwheat cake war in her mouth, the tear was in her eye,
Says I’m coming from de South, Susanna, dont you cry.

Oh! Susanna, Oh! dont you cry for me,
I’ve come from Alabama, wid my banjo on my knee.

I scon will be in New Orleans, and den I’ll look all round,
And when I find Susanna, I’ fall upon the ground.
But if I do not find her, dis darkie ’I surely die,
And when I’m dead and buried, Susanna, dont you cry.

Oh! Susanna, Oh! dont you cry for me,
I’ve come from Alabama, wid my banjo on my knee.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


this is so NOT cool...i'd say more but like all that come to mind are -horror- and uh, this sucks and my eyes are burning, which is unrelated but still
(excerpted) WASHINGTON (CNN) -- "In the days of the Taliban, those promoting Christianity in Afghanistan could be arrested and those converting from Islam could be tortured and publicly executed.

That was supposed to change after U.S.-led forces ousted the oppressive, fundamentalist regime, but the case of 41-year-old Abdul Rahman has many Western nations wondering if Afghanistan is regressing.

Rahman, a father of two, was arrested last week and is now awaiting trial for rejecting Islam. He told local police, whom he approached on an unrelated matter, that he had converted to Christianity. Reports say he was carrying a Bible at the time.

"They want to sentence me to death, and I accept it," Rahman told reporters last week, "but I am not a deserter and not an infidel."

The Afghan constitution, which is based on Sharia, or Islamic law, says that apostates can receive the death penalty."

Monday, March 20, 2006

yes please

So I totally have to share: it's amusing I promise: more than you ever wanted to know about your BIRTHDAY

Here are my partial stats: Your date of conception was on or about 21 August 1975 which was a Thursday. You were born on a Thursday under the astrological sign Taurus. Your Life path number is 5.

As of 3/21/2006 12:43:23 AM EST
You are 29 years old.
You are 358 months old.
You are 1,558 weeks old.
You are 10,904 days old.
You are 261,696 hours old.
You are 15,701,803 minutes old.
You are 942,108,203 seconds old.

Your age is the equivalent of a dog that is 4.26771037181996 years old. (You're still chasing cats!)

There are 53 days till your next birthday
on which your cake will have 30 candles.

AWESOME:: My birth tree is::Poplar, the Uncertainty
Looks very decorative, no self-confident behaviour, only courageous if necessary, needs goodwill and pleasant surroundings, very choosy, often lonely, great animosity, artistic nature, good organiser, tends to philosophy, reliable in any situation, takes partnership serious.

Speaking of Censorship!!!

This pisses me off.

Boycotting: Tom Cruise

Ah Censorship

It's scary how much it exists and in what evil form scientology is trying to divert one of my favorite shows. Otherwise I wouldn't care so much if it took over the world except for them being evil bullies and what not. Isaac tu? et tu?

Sunday, March 19, 2006


1. Penelo-birthday, Part II. This will include the dinner that never happened on Thursday, location TBA. I do enjoy surprises. Also, fam. And cake. Yum.

2. Some more cleaning. Must persist in House Bitch Duties. Though, will it ever be clean? No, no it will not. There will always be dust, grime, mold, and especially, terrifically, Hair of the Bender. I should shave her bald.

3. Speaking of bald, when will Kaleigh's hair fall out entirely, I wonder.

4. And, she now has tiny pimples. According to What to Expect the First Year, "infant acne" occurs in 40% of babies. That's too bad.

5. She does something really funny sometimes, though. Out of the blue (or, "ot of the ble"), her fists clench, her whole body stiffens while her legs draw up, her face wrinkles, and she slowly turns maroon. Then, she emits The Angry Baby Cry. It's different from The Normal Baby Cry, intense and strangled-sounding, and fairly amusing. Particularly since it goes away in approximately 20 seconds and seems inspired by nothing. It reminds me of Super Mario: remember on the Nintendo version, when Mario squatted down until he turned all flashy, and then he could jump really high?

6. Although come to think of it, I do not like the verb "squat." The noun might be okay.

7. Grey's Anatomy, Season 1! My birthday present from Scott (who has made a full recovery). (Aside from pulling his back out again this morning.) (Sheesh.) Season 1 is only 9 episodes, but still important. Not to mention I could McDream all day of McDreamy, mmm. I am up to ep 4. Last year I thought that I had watched it from the beginning, but either I didn't come in until midway through the season, or else I forgot everything I watched, possibly another side effect of working for Evil Verizon Wireless.

8. Speaking of, heehee. Please click here.

9. And I am totally having a fun drink with dinner tonight.

10. That's about it. I need to put on some socks, as my feet are cold. And possibly a different, warmer shirt.

an ode to "u"

oh, u
it was only a day or two
but i missed you
for without you (u)
i could not type words like

and so i am glad
are back.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

what the fck

does anyone have a soltion for fixing a fcked-p keyboard that won't type jst one letter? in this case, the letter between "y" and "i" on the keyboard. all the other keys are sperb, in perfect working order. it happened randomly, yesterday, ot of the ble, thogh sometimes, if i pond on the key really hard...


there it is.
bt, for the most part, i no longer have a... (pond pond pond)


please advise.

Friday, March 17, 2006


now i'm really sick. this sucks. that's all i have to say really- i was sort of itching to post about the 1924 bubonic plague and this guy i know who's on a chinese oil rig but it'll have to wait. my eyes are burning. and i can barely focus on written words- that's what makes law&order reruns, forensic files, cold case files, and mad tv- strongly compelling- short segments and what not- plus it's rainy-ish so i can't be an invalid in the sun.

1.inhale steam
2. drink water
3. blow nose
4. drink orange juice
5. take calcium pills
6. forage for food
7. blow nose (keep going)
8. examine medications- dose or not to dose
9. shuffle around the house in agony
10. murmer to self like a mad hatter

Thursday, March 16, 2006

I want a nose job

It's something i've wanted in the last years if i ever have medical insurance, along with a battery of allergen tests. It's not that i have a horrible nose, although it does incline slightly to the left- most likely due to cramped conditions in the womb-it's bcs i can't smell well. So I want that uh, hold on let me look it up- Septoplasty- there we go. And it's not only because I can't smell but that I am chronically sinus challenged- inflammed, gum aching, ear clogging, slightly dizzy- more than once and a while... and i wonder what it would look like if they enlarged those mucus drain ducts... so that it would get clogged less often. hmm. i wonder, bcs currently i'm suffering (boo.hoo.) and have chapped lips, clogged nostrils, a throat that is raw and in danger of igniting, and teeth that feel they're about to mutiny from my gums, eyes that are about to fall back into my head and that pounding hollow chamber feeling when i change elevations.

also cuz i'm in the mood to share- the job interview went fabulously. i have to wait 2wks before i find out though- the horror of having to wait. the horror. to see if i got it or if i have to fall into despair. the pit of despair. where christopher guest is sucking the life out of me notch by notch and some albino is talking nonsense to me on a daily basis. the horror.

things done today: read phillipians (there's some good stuff in there), watered the lawn, read the divine conspiracy, phone call, email, email, phone call, eat (all inclusive), tv, tv... inhale steam, eat pineapple, drink Oj, blow nose, strategize take over of world, decide to hate humanity less but still think we pretty much deserve it- think how bad could it be when things like fruit and Princess Bride exist- oh and friends, yah, that too- oh and licorice and cable- and uh, flowers.

invite: cancelled. birthday: sucks.

It's just not the best day, that's all. Here's how it was supposed to go. I had one not-so-pleasant task on tap for the day, which was to take Kaleigh over to the hospital at 8:30 in the morning for an echo cardiogram. It wasn't something I was horribly worried about, but...sort of. No one likes to think their baby might have a heart problem. In Kaleigh's case, there was a slight question when she was born of her right heart ventricle being enlarged. She also had an arhythmia, with her heart skipping every 20th beat, which apparently is not a big deal, a lot of people walk around with arhythmias and have no idea, and it's just not usually a problem. But, an echo was ordered to see what was up. And, the verdict is that Kaleigh's heart is fine. For some reason, though, the pediatriac cardiologist seemed irritated that Kaleigh was crying. Now, I can see that the test results aren't going to come out as good when the child is crying, but for pete's sake. A cold room, strange people arranging little stickers and wires all over you? Of course the baby's going to cry, so why the annoyance? Whatever. Healthy baby heart, that's a pretty damn good birthday present.

After the heart thing, I was basically just supposed to go about my day, maybe watch Ferris Bueller per annual Penelo-birthday tradition. Shop with LKT at Barnes & Noble, for which I have an exciting gift certificate, and then later, go out on a "date" with Scott. Like actually leave the house, sans baby, for the first time since we've had her. Scott's mom was going to babysit, we were going to dinner, to a place that was a surprise. Way exciting. But, poor Scott is randomly, violently ill. We think it's food poisoning. All we do know is that he can barely move.

It's fun times at the L-beam house. We've been watching DVR'd eps of Survivor: Pearl Islands. Well, I have. Scott's kind of missing it. And Kaleigh's a little fussbudget. And I'm trying not to pull my hair out.

At this point it doesn't even look like I'm going to get a shower, much less a dinner more exciting than macaroni and cheese.

Anyway anyway anyway. Drinks tomorrow night will have to be on hold for the time being. No chiminea and beer for Penelope. Dumb even-numbered birthdays, I knew it!!


Signing off from the Land of Birthday Suckitude,

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

thoughts, invite

1. I was watching part of American Idol last night, for lack of anything better on (sorry, Seacrest fans), and all the contestants were singing Stevie Wonder songs. And then they showed a spot on Stevie Wonder himself, and I was like, you know, it never occurred to me in my whole life that his real name was not Stevie Wonder.

2. New t-shirt: "The Baby Ate My Brain."

3. I love the aquarium. I've been there twice now, the one in Kure Beach, and how fun is it to wander around, looking at fishies, sharks, eels, and seahorses. Feed your baby to the alligator. Scott's sister and brother-in-law were in town, and we hadn't seen them since our wedding. Ah, family. Good times.

4. And check out the present they made for Kaleigh. As in designed, cut out, assembled, painted:
I am floored.

5. In the back of my mind, it occurs to me that the dogs are feeling neglected, and I feel like I need to do something about that. Yes, they are the most spoiled doggies around--which is why they'd now be feeling we don't love them as much since the new kid came to town. However, I don't want them to feel sad or less loved. Must increase patience levels. Because look how cute:

6. Although, I'm probably just projecting.

7. It's just odd all of a sudden, to talk to the dogs with the same voice and language used for the baby. So most of the time I don't. I always swore the shift wouldn't happened, but then there it did. Probably this will sort itself out in time.

8. Saturday, I had another fever, for the second week in a row. Borderline mastitis, which is oh-so-fun. Really, it's nothing graphic or gross, just a result of, it turns out, wearing tank-tops that are too tight. Around the boobs, not the middle. Who the hell knew? My boobs don't even seem that much bigger, but apparently, you've got to take care of those things when you're nursing. Huh.

9. Have I mentioned, the baby ate my brain? I feel like such a jackass so much of the time.

10. For instance, I screwed up yet again with the banking. We were charged three times successively last week for overdrafts. As the customer service associate with Wachovia explained, If I had had just ten more dollars in the account, none of this would have happened. (But then again, really? Just ten more dollars? Thank you so much for that analysis. Like if I had ten more dollars and could have prevented $75 in fees, I wouldn't have done so. Asshole.) Then, we also bounced a check. And I emailed Wachovia this time, to see if I should resubmit the payment to Bank of America for the car, or what. Because I didn't know how it works; I don't think I've actually bounced a check before, because who writes checks. Anyway, the message I got said the check had been returned to the merchant, i.e. B.O.A., and I took that to mean I should call them and make the payment again. Apparently, that's not what you do. Because they'll submit your bounced check again, and this time it will clear.

11. And I do not have money to pay my car payment twice in a month! OH MY GOD.

12. I lifted my Penelo-Boycott of Target after a mere week. Because I am weak. And because my brother and fam sent me a birthday gift certificate, and really, what else in life is happier. I bought clothes. Eeeeee, I bought clothes!

13. I hope 28 is a good year. The even-numbered birthdays, I don't know... I think it will be. Why the hell shouldn't it be. Must get over these silly rules like, odd-numbered years are better than evens. Anyway, despite owing the government $3000 that will have to be charged to AMEX this year, last year I worked for Verizon Wireless temporarily. And it was the worst temporarily, like, ever. One has to figure that a year without working for Verizon Wireless promises good things.

14. It's my birthday! Thursday, March 16. (Yay, Pisces-fish!)

15. And to celebrate the birthday, as well as St. Patrick's Day, I'm going to have a few drinks on Friday night, March 17. Hopefully outside on the deck. Maybe by the light/warmth of the chiminea. And I'd love to have some company. Want to come over? You're all invited. Like, 8-ish? You know where we live. And yes, this means you.


1. get breakfast
2. take shower
3. play with dogs
4. go to *gasp* a job interview (my first since december)
5. meet friend for lunch (having checked how much money i have in bank acct.
6. possibly read in non-specified cafe.
7. meet friend for hike in runion canyon- (hollywood hiiiillls. woo.)
8. go home?
9. go out again for a non-specified gathering- aka. where a book will be discussed.
10. sleep.
11. vow not to be that active again.

Monday, March 13, 2006

I "heart" humanity

Today was one of those days that make me lose faith in friendships- until i realized-that during a particular uh, stressful conversation, i got no less than 4 calls, all from people who love me, and 2 of which, have known me for more than 10 years. The day started with a wonderful conversation, which led to the bad one, and the night ended with me not shutting up. I think I've talked for a combined total of 5 hours today- and emailed an additional 2. But I still feel the need to vomit up more, why god? and help me god? and i'm pissed god. and grrr. god. and god is like, quiet down. and i'm like, i'm so trying. and he's like no you're not- and i'm like, i totally am. so i did yoga and southpark is on. and i'm trying not to condemn myself for the fries and burger i compulsively ate after the said, 2 hour encounter. and i am thinking about all the wonderful advice my fabulous friends gave me. and how i could not do without them- and how they are like the glorious sunset i experienced on friday- and how when i recite that soliliquay of Hamlet alone in my room in the dark-when he says, i have of late wherefore i know not, lost all my mirth....and look you this most excellent canopy the air, this brave o'er hanging firmanent, this majestical roof fretted with golden fire, why it appears nothing to me but a foul and pestulant congregation of vapors... and yet to me what is this quintessence of dust- I find it to be entirely false in comparison. No matter how much I love Hamlet and some of the more dour and depressing Psalms- I find most of my friends to be, dare I say, a ray of light in a very dark world. Thank you.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

More Historic

After a rousing success at the Nixon Library and lunch at Mimi's - mom and i jaunted over to the LA Arboretum. We got there an hour before closing and got kicked out by security a half hour after it closed, and were warned not to approach the coyote...

Here are some BEST OF- mostly tame peacocks, welchers and beggers

unidentified prehistoric fowl

giant aloe exposed to nuclear radiation
spotted eucalyptus
edible petals
random statue
house used on "fantasy island", on national historic register
note that the doll appears to be "moving"...i'm just saying.
post coyote sighting
into the sunset
how apropos


Hallo- Here I am in the hall, post tour- you see I am jubilant and patriotic. Something I don't embrace nearly enough. I had an excellent time, and while generally non-commital in my opinion of Nixon, I now like him- whether this is symptomatic of being on the fringes of Orange County or brain-washed by the museum-- I don't know. I think I always have though, but now I have a reason.
And how cute is this house! That's his actual birthhouse. Some business guys had the foresight to buy the 8 acres back in '67... nuts. I commented that this would be a perfect place to live but that got the tour guide talking about the horrors of having to share a room with her sister- so i opted to say that maybe some additional square footage wouldn't be so bad after all. But it really is just the most awesome house ever.  
Bad ass photo yah. In front of a huge chunk of the Berlin Wall. I had to stop myself at wondering what a random piece of modern art was doing there but then I realized that this was something of actual historical significance and then I had to remember, well, what exactly. And then I was like oh, yah- communism was real and not just what I accuse my friends of being when they start talking about how we should abolish privitazation. It was exhausting- the reality of all this "history". And to think Alger Hiss wasn't just a "communist"... he was involved in actual evaal espinoge. And who hides microfiche? in a pumpkin I ask you? My mom would be horrified!
This is a picture of Nixon reciting his famous "silent majority" speech. Also, I got to hear the actual tapes- from Watergate! Ooo. And uh, let down. I can't believe he got impeached for that. Did you know that Nixon has been on the covers of "Time" more than anyone else in its history? What's up with that? (54.) And my head is filled with other random facts about the Lincoln Bedroom, Charles DeGaul (whoever he was), the nixon/kennedy debates, horses and their relationship to the white house- as well as uh...stuff. you know. the end of the vietnam war. relations to china. space travel. and uh... other stuff.
Oh hey, here's the extended family. The guy in the back is my 2nd cousin 2x removed, his wife (not related) and his daughter. Oh and my mom is on the right... So Diane (on the left) actually has hair as crazy as my moms)- and other stricking resemblences besides perhaps the mouths and the squinting was that, Diane brought us a bag of oranges from her yard and mom brought them oranges from our yard. Freaky huh?

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Friday, March 10, 2006

Sunny, Highs in the 70s, and a Jackass Daydreaming of Springtime

Yesterday, I was so happy because I opened the door. I love those times of the year where the heat or the air conditioning can be turned off, and the doors and windows can be left open for the breeze, and the dogs can watch all the people walk by, and you can hear the windchimes. It just feels so good. First I opened the door, then later all the windows: the bedroom windows, the kitchen windows, the living room windows. I had a nice cross-breeze blowing through the house, and was all like, ahhh, spring.

Then Scott informs me this morning, ummm, did you know all the storm windows were still shut?

Thursday, March 9, 2006


Tomorrow I'm going to the Nixon Library and BirthPlace in Yorba Linda. I'm also going to meet my 2nd cousin twice removed... i wonder if we'll take a tour.