Saturday, May 31, 2008

Owl Watch 2008, by M

So one night we were all in a good mood, sitting around outside and contemplating nature. I get this email from National Geographic about a BioBlitz. Which you know scientists combing the hill, collecting data.... sounds awesome. So we signed up cuz we're weird like that. When we got there it was slightly lackluster- like we were the bastard site for the real exciting stuff going on closer to the coast. Tipped over Welcome sign. No t-shirts or balloons... and ourselves were like the rebels of the owl group- we didn't quite look the part- not in khaki, not carrying binoculars, but mom and I are pretty into birds and CA nature. Obvi. But Amber and I are downright well, dangerously, full of attitude. And had about 5 valid criticisms of the event within 2 minutes. But we held it together for mom. There was an ecology major doing it for credit, and asked us what our majors were. We slyly implied that we were "done with that"... and then the two fanatical birdists, which you have to be to go out night after night and try and observe owls and get this stupid grin every time you hear the black phoebe flycatcher or the wren call from here or there or everywhere... who knows, and be president of the LA Autobahn society. And then tell us how they met, which was on a birding cruise, and that there's no use in not marrying someone who's not "into" birding. They were admittedly sweet. But the problem was the following: inability to engage field participants into scientific observation of subjects or lack there of, ignorance of area- as the experts were better practiced in the San Gabriel mountains and didn't know how high traffic Griffith park actually is... which is a lot. And then tell us 3 hours into the event around 11pm, saying that because its nesting season they may not be provoked to come and explore possible intruders. WTF? Don't tell your few beleaguered troops that this entire expedition was for naught- minute1.
But anyway we saw 2 coyotes and 1 creepy runner guy, who sometime around 9pm went running thru a fenced area, thru a trail and disappeared, only to be spotted later, standing like a statue at the edge of the road for more that a few minutes. CReePY. Oh, and the Dwight Shrute of the BioBlitz- the batting team. Yes, actually looking for bats. Full utility belts, head lamps and a very intense attitude of CBB. on a MISSION.
But anyway I don't know why I'm telling you all this- I should've made it a story- given you the sense that we heard our quiet steps up the trails and treading thru sand. That we stared up in the warm night and saw stars and the still shadows of the trees and heard the scurries of creatures- all of us gazing out and waiting for something that never came, and the hours passed and we walked and talked and continued to keep looking out and into the night, hoping against all contrary signs, to see something. Because we knew, it just had to be there.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Oh 32 where are You, by M

There's scant information on how to live life in your 30's and I'm too lazy to turn to television- you know there was that one show 30something and then SintC but no. I was googling GenX too and that seemed even more doubtful, though I proudly count myself in that category of disenfranchised foolish youth... like until a couple years ago. I still however hold to my fav flannel wearing, docmartin(still have mine), grunge ways as a special and nostalgic time of especial angst and melancholy. That transition time from DepecheMode and OingoBoingo/Morrissey to PearlJam /Nirvana/Soundgarden and onto REM, Radiohead and possibly ending with Moby much later. I can't decide. Giving way from Blacks/NavyBlues and baggy clothing to formfitting and colorful. Anyway,

I was surprised how different being in your 30's really felt. Though I still don't know where I'm going, or what I'm going to do about it, I'm much more sure about it. There's this Confucius quote- one of the only things I took away from Thoreau's Walden (which I read at 17) was, to know what you know, and to not know what you do not know- that's true knowledge. And there's a certain humility, i guess, at knowing for sure your strengths and weaknesses, purposely testing them or not, and deciding how to proceed from there. And being honest about it. Especially with the idea that even if your conception of yourself hasn't aligned with reality that there's no reason to put your life on hold and wait for it. I just get on with things better.

There's little differences too as my habits and social ideas concertize... I certainly am not as socially needy- still needy, yes, but the breadth of what I'm will to experiment with has diminished into disinterest. My boredom is much more narrowly defined and the solutions aren't so much relegated to a big party, an all-nighter, petty theft, rampant candle-incense burning sessions or repeating the same refrain of music all night while writing poetry. But that's just me. I still repeat songs over and over while I write, but the tone is completely different.

I like to repeat the phrase, Ah, fuck it. Alot. Sometimes you deduce things to worse case scenarios- thinking, what's the worst that can happen, and when faced with that I feel a lot better. Like, oh, I can grapple with that, conquer that- also start dealing with your mortality NOW. Aging, NOW. It will hit you like a ton of bricks if you don't start the mental churning now. Not in a oh, woe's me to wilting of my salad days, but just a realistic look at the fact that we all have to die and we're going to get wrinkly and beautifully interesting while we do it- and all that with stereotypical pains. But that doesn't mean you go gently into that goodnight! Age isn't a GAME OVER warning light. But a proceed with caution and a good amount of pep. Because you rock and your worth it. I think the biggest chinks that could bring me to a crestfallen 32 would be if I ignore my vanity and pride... as in what am I vain and proud about- in little ways- my hair, my teeth, my strength, my words, my wit... and imagine those being given the blows of the body and mind aging. And one must be okay with that but not complacent. That redchip is blinking after all.

Ah, I digress! 32 is going to be a good year.

Positives: I'm alive, going to central america, a good home, a mom, and animals and a lovely yard, I'm learning french and am going to accomplish various things on my 'to-do' list, and my awesome car lolly, amazing and strange friends...

Negatives: Debt (possible terminal condition)

Neutrals: Singleness (not quite as negative as i sometimes think it might be), weight (whether which way I'll be be me while doing it.), my job (oh it comes and it goes and one day maybe it will come aground to a magical island called content) and as long as i don't freak myself out in the inbetween times again. That was awful.

Visuals: Up from the dark, amazonian river to the rocky outcrop- blonde wheat colored side of a mountain. The wind is blowing and the sky is blue and clear.

Hmm, anyway, a little more rambley than warm and fuzzy but ah well, themsthebreakskid.

shirts recently purchased, by pen

I needed some new shirts (that actually fit? unbelievable concept, I know), and happened on a coupon on EW Mag for It's a rad site. Here is the coupon, if you are so inclined!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I know, by M

If we had a 'blog more list' I would need to be on it. It's been a lackluster May. No warm fuzzy thoughts on 32. No glib quips about traffic or the new Extra BerryPearry Gum, and how I absolutely must have 2 sticks at once.

The goings on of me are simple: went camping. finished french. and am almost at the 6month waiting mark for "the TRIP"... also my poor pup Zeppelin has cataracts and the HOUSE is actually being built... foundation first. Also BBQ sunflowerseeds are the best and so is precious stringcheese.

I make the following vow (s):
To post about: the forest, maybe the french final presentation, 32 and per penelope's request my obsession with all things trip related- including intial packing lists, vaccinations and camera quandaries.

Bientot, Blogging World. Till tomorrow. I promise.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Weird Facts Wednesday

Mules are smarter than horses. And apparently mule racing is popular in Brazil and all over the southwest... some mules run faster than arabians and thoroughbreds. They are however, usually sterile but are the result of a mare breeding with a donkey /"jack".

Who knew...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

PSA: Gossip Girl

For those of you who share my summer goal of catching up on Gossip Girl, the CW is airing the pilot on Sunday night, and then the following episode on Monday night, so I imagine they will then air the entire season over the course of the summer. Starting at the very beginning. On TV, instead of the stop-start, small-screened jumpiness of online viewing.

Clearly the program schedulers have read our blog and set it all up, just for me. Program those DVRs! and discuss with me.

In related news, the Summer of Books is also well underway, as I spent the better part of this weekend "lolling out in the yard, watching the children play," with a book in hand, or a magazine, whichever. Of course it's going to be scorching hot before you know it, but until them, I'm soaking it up. It's idyllic. It's kind of heaven, letting your mind and self just "be."

Penelope out.

Monday, May 26, 2008

hey, let's try something new!

Mentioned in the StoryCorps book, this quote:
I am determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may find myself. For I have learned that the greater part of our misery or unhappiness is determined not by our circumstance but by our disposition.
-Martha Washington

Yes, but Martha, I initially argued in my mind, aren't you born with your disposition? Aren't some people naturally inclined, through that disposition, to be prickly or brooding or otherwise melancholy? Then I thought about it a little more, thought about the scope of my own life, and I reached a different conclusion.

I feel like, regardless of circumstance, I am uncomfortable... just being alive? Maybe everyone is, to some extent. As m and I recently discussed, in the absence of tension, you crave it. But there will always be tension, I'm not saying you can or should ignore tension. I'm just saying that overall, looking at each period of my life: childhood, junior high, high school, college, the fateful London/Paris trip, Chicago, grad school, real-world employment, and now kids, I always feel this unmistakeable itch. Like there was and is always something to kind of brood on. Like I'm on my way to solving some "problem" and once I get there, once I get past "this," then I will feel good.

Except that, once I do get past "this" (and you always, eventually, get past it), I jump right into some other vague state of discontentment, brooding on an all new "this." It's just the way I operate.

So I'm trying something new. I'm going to actually, for once, enjoy "this." Sure, there are little (and big) everyday problems and sources of stress. Tension. That's totally fine. But geez, I've got these two small people in my life, and this pretty fantastic marriage, and a cool house that I love to fix up and switch up and just plain live in. I need to be hung up on that. So I am. I am, inspired by Martha Washington, choosing a new disposition.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Three Things On My Doorstep I Could Do Without, by pen

1. The door-to-door salesman named Creepy McCreeperson. He and his cohorts have been touring our neighborhood this week, and they are the unfortunate, spinny-eyed breed of salesmen who have one spiel and only one spiel, and just. Keep. Repeating. It. Over and over, unblinking, regardless of what you say. The first time he came to the door, I answered it while on the phone, with two barking dogs and a screaming toddler underfoot, and told him Not a Good Time, Come Back Later, meaning Not at All, Never, Don't Even Think About It. But he didn't take the hint. He just kept on talking, even after I walked away from the door. So the next time he rang the doorbell, I sat on the couch, hidden from view, and just watched Bender snarl at him all aggressively, her hackles raised, until he went away. Is that bad?

He went to my neighbor's house twice as well, and she being smarter than I didn't answer the door, but the second time it was like he knew she was in there and pounded on the door for 20 minutes. Pounded. Creepy. I heard from another neighbor that he was selling children's books, but whatEVer. No thank you, go away.

2. Fancy-Smancy Health Information from BCBSNC. Such as: A heavy-duty binder filled with facts and information re: stress management, losing weight, etc. A little book about counting calories. And most recently, a stress management/yoga CD and a BCBSNC pedometer housed in a metal case. I mean, really? I just feel like some of the resources that went toward producing this extra landfill could have been fueled into projects such as, I don't know, not fucking up so many of our insurance claims that we have to call them on a regular basis to fix them? Because if we didn't, we would end up paying hundreds of dollars more than we're supposed to? Just a thought. But I don't think there's a health insurance company out there that actually does the job right, so what are you going to do.

3. Dying, dead, and deader than dead plants. Which, totally my fault. But sight of the crispy little structures are starting to depress me. To the trash can we must go, or I wonder if some of that soil's reusable, so I could plant some more things and kill them, too? That might be fun.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Summer Goals, by M

Oh Shenanigans.

A Summer Goals List:
  1. Obsess about the TRIP
  2. Think about ways to earn money for the TRIP
  3. Think about ways to stay employed bcs of the TRIP
  4. Start buying things for the TRIP
  5. Continue to be irritated for the $1000+ I have to pay for registration and car insurance in July.
Normally I would obsess about things like:
  1. Go Whale Watching for the great blue whale.
  2. Go kayaking in La Jolla Cove
  3. Go sailing on a replica of an 1847 Schooner
  4. Go swimming
  5. Go seaweed collecting
  6. Go to the beach more... it's like a nautical summer.
  7. Read at least 2 books aloud to mom outside in the garden.
  8. Take conversational french despite my utter reluctance.
And then if I want to go hard core:
  1. Stitch together quilt
  2. Make summer dress from last year
  3. Finish tear drop walkway
  4. Create walkway for front house.
  5. Figure out a way to go to Seattle to visit Matt and visit Pen in NC. Both also in nautical oriented locations.
You see how the summer could go a couple ways here. Utter fixation on funds and or lack there of in anticipation of the trip, consumed with arduous tasks that yield long term results, or brief flings that also cost money or.... sitting in my yard and trying to do as little as possible since we still don't have air conditioning. I don't know. I just don't. Though I have a feeling it's going to be a good one. Let's hope.

Weird Facts Wednesday

What Bird has the Most Feathers:

The Whistling Swan, Cygnus columbianus. In winter it can have as many as 25000.

Did you know that antlers are made of bone? They grow rapidly because they are nourished by a thing called "Velvet"- which is a velvety growth which has a patchwork of blood vessels that feed it. When the season for growth is over the blood flow is cut off at the base of the antler and the velvet is shed. In addition the antlers and their size are an indication of the bucks health because they need so much calcium and food resources in order to support such a system of antlers, the bigger the healthier. They shed them because there's no way they could survive winter having to support both their bodies and their racks.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Summer Goals, by pen

1. The Summer of Books. I want to read a lot of books, make that my standby Thing to Do When Nothing Else is Going On. Since cutting out Naptime, I've gotten a lot less reading done, as I always read while waiting for K.Lo to go to sleep. But summer is the time of lolling out in the yard, watching the children play, and so I plan to spend many an afternoon outside on a blanket or a lawn chair--okay, probably a blanket, since all of our lawn chairs are simultaneously breaking--with book in hand.

2. The Summer of Movies. I want to rent them, I want to go to the theater with J.Lo and Mel and whoever else I can rally, and watch them. It will be fab. S&TC will be the kickoff. Then maybe Indiana.

3. Watch the first season of Gossip Girl. I'll have to either find it online, or maybe I'll be lucky and the DVD will release before summer is over. I tried and then dropped this series early on last fall, but clearly I made a mistake. Must catch up.

4. The Summer of Blogs. I want to continue blogging and blogging more on each of the three, even if it seems like no one else cares. Because I care, so whatevs.

5. After the peas and cucumbers produce and then die, I want to replace them with squash and tomatoes. Probably I should start the seeds in a pot right now so I can be fully prepared with actual small plants, but that would require pushing said item to the top of the I'm Not Lazy or Otherwise Indisposed list. That would require true ambition.

6. I want to go to the beach a few times. Even though it's basically a giant pain in the ass.

7. I want to make summery things in the kitchen, like fresh salsa and strawberry rhubarb pie. Corn on the cob. Potato salad. Things like that.

8. I don't want to do any more big house projects for awhile.

Friday, May 16, 2008

discuss with me

***SPOILER ALERT: Do not read this if you haven't yet watched The Office and ANTM season finales.***

All right, so the season finale of The Office was a major, bummed out, buzz-killing disappointment. As m pointed out, the first 39 minutes were kind of fantastic, my favorite storyline in particular being Kevin as a passably "special" employee. Toby's exit was well-played, though we hope they check in with him next year in Costa Rica. His replacement offers all sorts of potential as a love interest for Michael, and for yet another personality for Michael to play off of; this chick is oddly like his mirror. I didn't really notice Andy being in the episode, and then, there he was. Stealing Jim's proposal thunder, and that's where it all went downhill. First J.Lo and I thought Jim would be fired just prior to proposing, and that would screw it up, but he brilliantly overthrew the coked-up, belligerent Ryan. They way the proposal botch did go down, however, was maybe the worst way they could have popped that happy bubble. Jim had it all set up, contributing the fireworks and such to Toby's going-away party, settling on an at-work setting for the proposal because work is where Jim and Pam have had all their "firsts." But then Andy steps up out of nowhere, taking advantage of the same perfect moment and proposing to Angela, who says yes in a sort of disgruntled way, and then is spied later "making up" with Dwight. I appreciate the revival of their storyline, think it also has lots of potential. But the Michael Scott storyline totally bummed me out as well, because really? Jan is pregnant, but by a sperm bank donor? I mean it was believable and yet almost over-the-line mean. Because as much of a tool as Michael can be, he seems like he'd actually make a pretty good father... As odd as that sounds. And it was just sort of horrible to see him crawling back to Serenity by Jan and supporting her baby treachery, simply because it's the closest he's going to get to the real thing. I kind of cannot stand Jan.

I'm sorely disappointed that Jim and Pam didn't get officially engaged, but I reserve final judgment until the fifth season premiere. The writers, brilliant as they are, can save this, should save it. Must save it. Somehow they need to turn the lost moment on its head and satisfy that huge romantic buildup for viewers. The story can't all be sunshine and roses, even in a comedy, but on some things, a payoff is non-negotiable. Jim and Pam's engagement is one of these instances. Turk and Carla over at Scrubs give me hope that they won't drag this out yet another season with all sorts of horrible tension between them, that they will just get married and live happily ever after, that the writers can step up and maintain an interesting storyline about the Married Jim & Pam... because frankly I can't take it if they break up, or even remain the same.

Dear Writers of The Office,
My Happy Jim & Pam Bubble has been burst. Please repair anon.
Sincerely Yours,

Moving on to ANTM, Whitney was awarded the win, making her the show's first full-figured Top Model. Fatima got the boot first, thus making Kim and I dance for joy, and so Whitney and Anya battled it out. You're going to ask me if I think Whitney was chosen because she is a plus-sized model, and my answer to that is yes. Absolutely, yes. Don't get me wrong, I like Whitney, I think she had enough talent as a model to deserve the win, I think it's cool to see a plus-sized girl in there, it's great. I wasn't even bothered as much throughout the season at her alleged fakeness, because I kind of enjoyed her valley-girlish snark and felt like she was sincerely a cool person even if she needed to work on her facade. But was she a better model than Anya? No. Not even close, really. I like Whitney enough that this finale wasn't a disappointment, per se, but I felt nearly as dumbfounded as when Danielle or "Dani" was crowned over Joanie, or when Naima was declared winner instead of Kahlen. To me it just didn't feel quite "right." I feel like the judges knew they might not ever again get a chance to crown a plus-size girl, so they seized the moment before them. Whitney did deserve to be in the Final Two over Fatima and most definitely over HTM (Hot Tranny Mess) Dominique, but to win over the stunning, born-to-model Anya? Not so much. The consolation is that Whitney will make a cool Cover Girl, and Anya will certainly have a career. She's young, and it doesn't seem like she's going to throw in the towel. Unlike Kahlen, because where the hell is she? Congrats, Whitney. Can't wait till the next cycle begins.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

B-dog update

Bender is pitiful after her surgery, shaved and sliced like a punk-rock animal, but recovering pretty well it seems. K.Lo, N.Lo, and I skipped town while most of this surgery/initial recovery was happening because a) my Grandma and aunt were up at my parents' house, and they had not yet met N.Lo, and b) it kind of worked out better for us not to be there and in Bender's way. At least for K.Lo not to be in Bender's way. When we arrived back home in the afternoon, B-Dog Girl still had on that cute but horrible cast, which caused her to whimper profusely. She also wasn't eating or drinking much of anything, and whatever she did take in came right back out in gluey little puddles everywhere. Which I stepped in once or twice with my bare feet.

Once J.Lo took her to get the cast taken off, she was still pitiful, particularly with that shaved back leg and sewed-up incision now so exposed, but already she whimpered less. Because of the excessive vomitation, we severely cut back her original pain med regimen and waited to see if that helped.

She woke up in the morning much more spry, much more Bender, and ate. Whimpered not at all, really, and has been putting some weight on the bum leg. She is not allowed to run, really should stay off the stairs and couch as much as possible, and K.Lo the Two-Year-Old Tornado of Destruction should definitely stay away from Bender and that leg, but in the end, I think she's going to be okay. She's already barked and thrashed her head around a little at the Old Guy Next Door, and dropped a tennis ball at my feet, as if I were actually going to throw it. We're taking care of her the best we can, with J.Lo doing the saintly work, me taking on the better part of the Day Shift, Bailey being the loyal best friend, and K.Lo tossing in her own words of comfort now and again, something about the Boo-Boo Leg and Feeling Better Soon. Love ya, Bender. I think you might just make it through.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Weird Facts Wednesday

The land ANIMAL that has the largest EYES are:

yes, you guessed it, the MIGHTY OSTRICH. (their eyes are 2"across)

This last week I've learned about: how horses see, muscle makeup of gorillas (again), fish harness equipment for deep sea fishing, antlers, bulls, their horns, polar bears, their bouyancy.

Bonus FACT:

How many deaths have occurred at the running of the bulls in Pamplona Spain since 1924?
When was the last death? 2003 (an expert runner, 63)... the most dramatic and only american to die however was in 1995- gored straight thru and he was only 22.

In Other News, by M

I'm in a moderate amount of pain. I had that vigorous hike on Sunday and then met with my trainer on Monday- who proceeded to make me do scissor kicks, air bicycle, elliptical for 40, medicine ball twists, and more harrowing core strengthening exercises. It was the last cool down on the elliptical that did me in really. I could feel it as I got off. But being oblivious to the impending doom I probably didn't drink enough water or devise a 'burn that lactic acid off' strategy- As the following day led to 8 hours of ass-sitting, coupled with another 4+ hours of ass-sitting... dinner and Tosca @the LAoPera. It was lovely and the dinner was good. But every time I got up to get food, answer the phone, go to the loo, and gaze into the night, was coupled with pain. Still is coupled with pain which is causing me too actually stoop and shuffle until my quads decide they can let the death grip of pain go down to a dull ache. It's good times I assure you! So much so that besides heavily dosing advil, icy hot, i'm actually considering delaying post-bday dinner plans so i can go swimming and hit the steam room. Or sauna? I don't remember which is better for this sort of idiocy.

Besides that, my over exuberance to purchase my planetix left me blowing off LAX in favor of burbank, without doublechecking, which is only 5min away vs. 40-- and costing myself oh, roughly, $168 more. Sure I cut down on early wake times, and 1.5hours of 405drivetime and $8 for no flyawayshuttle (plus time waiting) service... but still I can't help but feel the sting.

I keep thinking there must be something else to report but hopefully no. Just idle complaints about how my brother who is now married with child thinks that because I'm single, my trip is less debt worthy, than oh lets say the enormous debt incurred by children... what-EVER. Whatever to that. As he says, have you paid off x, y, z... and I'm thinking, oh so your house and CC is paid off and NOW you're having a child. Oh, okay. NOT. Fucking married people and their anti-single bias bullshit.

Alright I'm stopping now.
Tomorrow I'll report on all the warm fuzzy thoughts of 32.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

mendacious: an astrological BIRTHDAY salute

My dear friend mendacious has a birthday today. Happy Birthday, m! With your travels and dreams and goals, it's set to be a banner year in the world of mendacious. To celebrate you today and the complex, intriguing, badass, artsy, FUN, unwavering person and friend that you are, I offer you and BlogNation a detailed look, ripped from various sites on the Intra-web, at the true mendacious: Sun in Taurus, Moon in Scorpio, Taurus rising. Love you, friend! xoxox, pen

You are sensible, loyal, materialistic and possessive. You  have strong values and nothing can change your mind.  The  word stubborn doesn’t begin to describe your attitude once you  set your mind to something.  Nobody can make you do  anything, unless you want to.  You like to think of it as being  patient, and you are, but you are the most stubborn sign in the  zodiac.  [Hee.]

Actually you tend to take a perverse pleasure in being stubborn  and thwarting others.  You are not flighty and it takes some  time to gain your interest in things, but once you are, you are  devoted.  [Yup.] This can extend to ideas, people and material  possessions.  This can lead you to be very possessive, jealous  and selfish of what you are devoted to.  You love your luxuries.  You take great sensual pleasure in most of your undertakings.   Although your not the type to sweep anyone off their feet, you  have a definite romantic side- more of a wine and dine and  seduction-after-dinner style. [Yowza!]  You probably have never  experienced love at first sight, but once you love, it is a deep  and steady love and usually lasts forever.

You make a fantastic loyal and steady friend, lover, parent or  whatever you put your mind to.  You are slow to anger, taking  most things in stride, but once you do get mad- watch out  world.  [Oooo.] The home is very important to you because it offers you  stability- a place where you know just everything and how it will  be.  You don’t like to change and sudden things tend to upset  you. You like what is comfortable and familiar.  Security is  important to you and thus so is money.  [Money, schmoney.] In these matters you  are very practical and can save up money with seeming ease.   You are generous with loved ones, but when you don’t like  someone it is as if they don’t exist at all. [Hee hee, I like that one.] To you they don’t  because they have no value.  You can be judgmental.  
The lessons of a Taurus is to learn not to make value  judgments on others.  You tend to see value only in a material  way, ignoring the more spiritual aspects of life.  [Well, I don't see that, but okay. Clearly we're not foolproof here.] Other lessons of a Taurus is to respect other peoples will and to recognize  that love is not about possessing another person.  

While others may find security and comfort in material things, Moon in Scorpio people seek out emotional intensity. No matter what, there is something very intense about Lunar Scorpios. They are diggers when it comes to the world of emotion--they can see beyond facades and cut right to the core of a person. [Ha! So true.] This ability to "see" what isn't obvious to the rest of the world can be intimidating to others or wildly attractive, depending on the audience. 

Their deep-seated need for transformation and rebirth can manifest itself in the lives of Lunar Scorpios in different ways. Most have powerful, emotionally intense lives. Some feel like it is beyond their control -- these natives seem to attract emotional upheaval, and their lives appear to consist of plenty of dramatic ups and downs. However, when accepted as an emotional need, rebirth and change doesn't need to be so dramatic and overwhelming. In some way or the other, Moon in Scorpio natives seek out intense experiences. [Central America! 28 days!] If their lives are regular in any way, there can be an unconscious need to test their own strength and stir up emotional excitement. Self-awareness and acceptance is probably the best way to handle this deep need for emotional drama. [Word.]

Doing things halfway or having meaningless relationships simply doesn't fulfill them. Lunar Scorpios want all or nothing. [Yes.]

Moon in Scorpio people often have a strong fear of betrayal. They seek out commitment, and feel the need for a partner to give up something for them. Some will put the people they love through a series of tests, and these are not always conscious. [Wait--wha?] Their apparent suspicion can be trying for the people who love them. However, once committed, Moon in Scorpio people can be the most loyal and protective partners around. [Mm-hmm. Agreed.]

Even the shy ones have enormous presence. Their lives are emotion-driven, yet many Moon in Scorpio natives spend a lot of time controlling and mastering their emotions. Their intuition is enormous, although it is sometimes self-serving. 

Moon in Scorpio people radiate strength. [Yuppers.] Even in the absence of experience, they seem to "just know" things. It would be difficult to shock or scare away Lunar Scorpios in the face of emotional honesty and power. Some people instinctively want to lean on them, and other less brave folk run a little scared. [Don't run guys! Stick around, it's worth it!] Lunar Scorpios have exceptional "radar" that allows them to size up a situation--and a person--quickly and expertly. This ability to understand human motivation and nature can be too close for comfort for some, and enormously comforting for others.

Many Lunar Scorpios are intelligent and astute. Those that use their enormous powers for intimacy and honesty are the happiest, and they make the most interesting and rewarding friends and lovers.


Keywords: Impatient, Tactile, Opportunistic, Wants beauty and value, Appreciates all the senses

Slow, steady, and capable are adjectives that we can safely attach to individuals born with a Taurus Ascendant. These natives have tremendous stamina and staying power. They're often quite loyal to those they care about. Although they generally don't come on strong, they have personal presence; and they fairly radiate stability.

The sign on the Ascendant generally reveals how people start anything new. Taurus, by nature, is resistant to change. It can be difficult to sway Taurus rising natives--they're often rather stubborn and fixed in their ways. Their first responses are to feel things out, not in the way a Pisces might attune to their environment [wha?], but in the realm of the five senses. [Yup, yup.] They have well-developed sense of smell and touch, and respond to the material world. Theirs is a practical approach to life. Security is one of their foremost considerations before undertaking anything new.

Taurus rising natives are often quite cautious and careful. With a fixed sign on the Ascendant, they are not known for their flexibility. Rather, they possess determined single-mindedness. [No...]

More than most, Taurus rising prefers the "good things" in life. Self-indulgence can be a weakness for many with this Ascendant. Often collectors in some way, Taurus rising natives place a lot of value on their material possessions.

Taurus rising individuals prefer to dress in quality clothes with a comfortable feel to them. They are rarely ostentatious in their presentation. Many have strong and sturdy physiques.   

Often rather possessive in partnership, these natives won't easily break up their relationships. Although they are not particularly jealous, they view their partners as their personal property. [Huh! That's funny.] Intensity and loyalty are especially important to Taurus rising natives. [Yes.] These are highly sensual people who prefer the comforts that a one-to-one, stable partnership offers. Although Taurus rising individuals value harmony and calm, their partnerships may be on the passionate side.

Taurus rising natives are often very comforting to be around. They have a stability about them that is soothing, and an inner harmony that is attractive.  [Awww. So true.]


Monday, May 12, 2008

I am confused.

1. Parvati?
2. Parvati? Really?! 
3. Amanda did not win. 
4. Ozzy professed his undying love to Amanda?
5. Parvati. Won. Really. 
6. Jonny Fairplay, still befuddling me by landing a model, having a baby with a model, being engaged to a model. Although, it kind of makes sense because if I remember correctly, they share an interest in wrestling. 
7. They're going to Africa next time, and the setting looks very much more promising than the last Survivor: Africa, where the cast was essentially confined to brush circles, to stay safe from the lions. But here there are like, giant gorillas, and surfing hippos, and other large creatures wandering afoot. Good luck with that. 
8. Parvati won?!
9. Amanda's answers to the jury apparently sucked. Why did she flake and not admit to Cirie the reason she wouldn't take her to the end is because she had a better chance of winning against Parv? She would have spoken the truth and buttered up Cirie, simultaneously. 
10. Natalie? I don't even know what to say about those jury questions, other than WTF. 

Oh well. It was entertaining, anyway. At least James won the Fan Favorite prize, and I just love him. At least Erik was a good sport about being thrown under the bus. Amanda and Ozzy are still together, which I suppose it cute. Confusing, but cute. And Parvati is a millionaire. Will wonders never cease. 

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Hike #2, by M

As promised, or directly implied these are the seeds of the awesome CHILICOTHE "the indian cucumber"... the seeds are quite rolley/polley and mom and I are excited to dry them and see if they'll make good necklace ornamentation or not.

After a long hike, then lunch, we read a book aloud about this girl who meets this baby whale, we laid in the grass, watched Arsenic and Oldlace, I started a new artpiece and for dinner I had non-trainer approved chicken strips, and my mom ate peas out of a can. I can't describe how off-kilter it seemed, still seems, but at least in some sort of apocalyptic shelter situation she would definitely not be the one complaining. If only for the sunlight. That's her Achillis. Overall it seemed a successful mothers day...

Saturday, May 10, 2008

O, Skirt, by M

Amber says this skirt has too much fabric to it. I contend that is what the skirt is about. The waistband however is still a little unwieldy as I wore it tonight and it grew about 2 inches despite how many enforcement rounds i did. I can't decide if i really do need to cave to elastic or just insert a firmer piece of fabric... i want it loose enough to just hang on my hips but not get all short in the back, long in the front. Regardless...

Friday, May 9, 2008

Odallaly! by M

Yah, still going to CENAM, checking stuff off my list and freaking out about things like mosquito nets and micro-fiber clothing. I have neither. For some reason things like deet and proper lightweight hiking shoes and an mp3 player have now become extremely important- now that travel insurance, plane tix and trip deposit are purchased. As if I have money left for such things. It's a wonder anyway and I'm sorry you'll be hearing about this for a while. It says in the "Birthday Book" that I don't handle financial affairs well and that i have scorn for such practical concerns, but more importantly it asserts that "Movement and travel of all sorts are important to those born on this day. Depression often overcomes [me] at a time of real or imagined unpopularity, especially when they feel stuck in one place or occupation..." so clearly what the "book" is saying is exactly what's happening. Right? Right. In other news I had a boring post about how I officially broke up with my trainer, like a coward and left a message for him, and then he retaliated and made it difficult for me when I started seeing someone else. But I deleted it. Yawn. Anywayz Jason and I are really happy together right now and it's totally going to work out- until I run out of sessions that is. Awkward. Though I do now want to be in peak me physical condition. That'd be nice. But it's not like I'm hiking to Macchu Picchu. As one work guy said, "um, youd have to start doing like, a lot of cardio."... I'm way lazier than that. Jason already had to use the phrase, "this is your last set, let's wrap it up, we don't have forever." Clearly. Jason. Clearly.

My life. My funds. My everything.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

W just bought my dog a new leg.

We should get our rebate check next week. Originally, I flaked and thought for some reason the last 2 of the SSN in question was 09, but it's 99. So sad. But not really, because by now I would have had the thing spent, and that would have been bad. Because my dog, my Bender-dog, my B-dog Girl, needs to have surgery. She's been limping around for a few weeks now, not appearing to be in any pain, but clearly not using the one back leg. She's still running, playing, not wincing, which is why we waited to take her to the vet. You know they pretty much rape your wallet for making eye contact with your animal. And our wallet is scheduled to be dearly raped on Monday. The ligament that holds Bender's knee together is completely blown. The other back leg may not be long to follow. It's degenerative, nothing we could do. And she's less than half her life expectancy, only 5 1/2 years old, so of course we are going to fix her. The poor thing. She's not going to move the same again, but hopefully will respond well to the surgery. Which is the "cheap" surgery. At $1,100. So, um, thanks W. Consider this our little contribution to help recharge the economy. And our dog. 

airy-fairy naval-gazing that you should totally partake in

M and I have been discussing moon and rising signs. Previously, I didn't know mine, but was super-curious, about what it was and what it all means. And actually, I didn't really know what moon signs were all about at all, so I didn't even consider. But it's super-cool, guys! Okay, so SUN sign is what you usually tell people you are, based solely on your birthday. It's your soul (I'm quoting from the web snippet m sent me), "your inner personality and potential." Then the MOON sign is "your heart... your emotional core." The RISING SIGN is what you present to the world, or your mask. 

I'm a Pisces fish, with Cancer moon and Sagittarius Rising. This assessment is all very enlightening to me. I'd copy and paste what it all means, but I suspect you'll be less interested in my profile than your own. BUT, for kicks, I will include K.Lo's, because it's just... all so very true. It explains so much. 

K.Lo, in Astrological Terms:

You will ascend rapidly into the a captivating spot light. With an appetite for fame, you will make some exceptional power plays. Avoid any signs of an ultimatum as your eccentric genius gets center stage. You will be characteristically unpredictable, and as you live life in the fast lane your social calender will sizzle with exciting activity. 
You are idealistic, with strong likes and dislikes. You are a thinker with strong needs for originality. You also tend to view the world in an unconventional light. You are often determined, cautious, quiet, as well as philosophical. Others often perceive you as refined, pleasant and generous. You have radical ideas that are looked upon as eccentric.

Impatient, ambitious, vigorous, stubborn and full of energy. They take their decisions "on a gut level". They are happy, optimistic, and positive and can give impulse to their environment. Mostly they dispose of excellent management qualities and with their ambition and energy they go far. They have a tendency towards impatience and they easily get bored with routine tasks. They permanently seek new challenges and adventures. If they do not succeed the first time, they may react with anger, but then they begin the next project. They easily upset their fellow human beings, because they do not only express their positive feelings immediately and don't let off steam. Sorrow, suffering and anxieties they hide from themselves and from others; they should learn to admit also these feelings and to live them.

You are an interesting mix of introspective and outlandish.
Waving your freak flag high, you really do things your own way.

While you may seem distant, you care very deeply for humanity.
You just have no tolerance for fools, slackers, or dullards.

And while you're fairly misanthropic, many are drawn to you.
Innovative and clever, people look to you for new ideas and trends.

What a firecracker! Boy, am I in trouble. As if I didn't already know. 

So, find your MOON and RISING SIGNS, and post them in the comments! We need to screen our readers, clearly, and understand what we're dealing with. 

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Weird Facts Wednesday

See I told you I'd forget. Thanks mom.

Just for you: Sharks pee through their skin, and they smell heavily of ammonia when they're dead. Also Horses can kick with a force equal to 1ton of pressure. For instance a small colt, can bend a quarter in 1/2 quite easily with a play kick.


I barely passed my french test last night. I can only assume I have some sort of senioritis. Because nothing can induce me to focus or give a crap. It has to be correlated to the increase of blooming activity outside, and oh those sacred blue skies, and yah, my trip. I was deadset on working out last night but then suddenly as I was slumped over in my squeaky desk I said, No fucking way. I went to the Shell station, bought an extra crispy kitkat and a bag of sourcream potato chips and went thru the car wash crunching down and blaring the music. I went home and glanced at the clock, saw the digits beating down on me and thought, fuck it, I'm going to bed. 10pm. Deadgone to the world. I woke up at 8, wondered, what the fuck. Shuffled around and got ready for work. Found a new bag of apples and oranges on the counter, didn't even wonder how they got there. Just took one and kept on going. Went outside and saw my car completely wet and rinsed as if I'd forgotten to go thru the dry portion of the drivethru wash. Did I? How was that possible? When did it rain? Where the fuck am I... I proceeded to work anyway, against all the signs that pointed otherwise.

Today I feel like a sturdy 11x14 piece of paper on a small brightly colored table. There are cups of even more brightly colored paints. If I had eyes I would be shifting apprehensively. As it is a breeze lifts the left corner of the paper and then it settles back down again...

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Who Me?

Now look, I'm fairly convinced, Pen is just the more active part of my imagination and that when I go she will go on in unmatched brilliance, wit and general shenanigans. For instance, case in point, she has a husband and kids. Just yesterday I went onto her other site and was faced with the reality that she was doing things and existing in a way I hadn't even imagined- I mean for one, they were all grouped there together looking like a family! What is that about I ask you! That was not in the original concept plans of Penelope. She has this whole 'nother life. Clearly she's become sentient, so what I can do but retaliate and have adventures without her. Weirdly, most times, I imagine her not so very far away, like in my mind, and then when she's there, she's very close, and then some word, or mental picture will break through and then I think, aw, sad. It's almost like finding out there won't be Christmas or your birthday plans were canceled. But I envy her sentient life, all comings and goings and family tidings, so what else can I do, but live boldly with a dash of reckless abandon. Otherwise these days at the desk stretch to infinity and I become fixed, immobile and a little stir crazy. But I don't want to take all the good people that comprise my world for granted, like mom and the blog nation and the paycheck and my own penelope. I will make my way to you, and you will always matter.

Monday, May 5, 2008


The entire soundtrack of Annie plays continuously in my head, bits and pieces of "Easy Street," commingled with "We've got Annie!" and "Little girls, little girls, every day I eat sleep and breathe them." I'm trying to convince myself that a handful of chopped-up cashews won't totally destroy the butterscotch brownies baking in the oven. And I ponder the Big Question, the Real Matter at Hand: What am I going to do for 28 days without mendacious? 

Oh sure, you say, she's living her dream and all. Scratching that travel-bug itch that's been nagging at her for several years now. And several years it's been--we've passed the "three" mark, so I can officially say "several"--since mendacious and I have been face to face. We live over 3,000 miles away. But whatever, she is totally abandoning me! I ask you, how am I supposed to hold down the blog front for that long. How can I singlehandedly uphold the legend that is penelope and mendacious? 

Sure, she says she's going to seek and use the Internet wherever and whenever it is available, but we all know that she will be staying in a one-room hut with a dirt floor, and will be lucky to hunt down the local shaman, to whom she'll have to fork over a fiver every two minutes while he pretends to divine what's happening over here in the USA. 

She's cutting us off, guys. Rainforests, ruins, volcanoes and beaches, my foot. Mendacious is going on vacay to like, see and experience the world or whatever? But she's really just forcing us all into a 28-day program of a different kind. 

M, I hope you are able to sleep at night! You have seven whole months to think about what you did. 

Oh yeah, and I am happy for you. I guess. 

Poutily yours, 

P.S. You may be able to make it up to me someday, should you continue to invite me on adventures until such time that I can actually go with you. Which granted, may be 40+ years from now, but I'm prepared to hobble alongside you in foreign, magical lands. 

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Well, quel surpris, surpris! I did the unthinkable. After 3 years of hems/haws, wistful sighs and pouty lips I put a deposit down, bought travel insurance and put a plane ticket on hold. HOLY CRAP. Now I may need to get a little parttime/worknights/weekends gig to not completely devestate my creditcard paying down progress but phew. Here I go!

Central America: Antigua, Copan, Granada, Ometepe, Monteverde, San Jose... basically 28 days and 4 countries. Rainforests, ruins, volcanos, beaches... I don't now if it can possibly live up to any of that at all really, except for the inevitable fact that those places actually exist. But here's to hoping for a goodtime no matter what may come. You all are welcome to join me!
oh and it's like 7 months away. so pllleeennty of time! and at christmas and newyears... um.

Friday, May 2, 2008

New Place Same Job

I was paranoid that upon moving it would be declared that I was fired and there was no place for me. But when I walked into the office on friday I was surprised to find that my computer had made the transfer and that even better bob didn't have a desk and my computer was exactly where he wanted to be. That's life as a PA with a laptop. The positive of my situation is that I'm in the entryway. Behind us is the singledoor small hallway that lead to all the other offices. Everyone has to walk by, say good morning, compliment my painting later in the day, and envy that I'm not in the hellish din of racket going on in the writer/producer bullpins. The down sides are that I am not in the hellish din. I'm isolated and bob is gone 1/2 the time on runs and who knows what. So I'm actually even more isolated than I was before. But I hope that by being bold and bringing in my paintings, striking up some conversations and what not I'm a little bit better off, though by no means do I have any friends, because that would be too easy. But those cranberry walls- those are delicious.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


I've decided lately that the sound of SPLATS can never mean anything good. If I hear a splat, it is either:

*N.Lo yakking, said yak hitting the floor.
*K.Lo, having a pee accident, said accident hitting the floor. (I guess it's more of a "splash" than a "splat," but you get the picture.)
*Me painting, and I've splattered again. The splatter is typically followed by me stepping in it, tracking the paint everywhere.

Splats mean cleanup, a major decline in efficiency, and a general feeling of annoyance/discomfort/disorder. Monk would have a fit. The worst is when I have more than one possibility occuring at once; it happens more often than you might think.

Consider me ANTI-SPLAT, until we have moved on to the next phase of existence.