Monday, March 29, 2010

Magic Monday- A spin and "I'd Rather Be" all in one!

Ok, so I didn't mean to bail on the Spin Cycle two weeks in a row.  For some reason, Blogger kept timing out on me on Thursday and Friday, so I couldn't get my spin on!  Frusterating technology (fist shaking in the air).  I shall attempt to Spin now.  Very late.

Last weeks Spin was supposed to be all about me.  But you guys already know a lot about me.  Who really wants more of that?  Instead, I offer you a short list of my favorite words.  These words have no special meaning to me, I just like saying them.

Paul Tsongas (you might remember him?  Politician in the 80's?)
Defenestrate (to throw something out the window)
Tsotchke (Yiddish for nick nack)

Come on.  Say them out loud.  And tell me it wasn't fun.  Now here's your mission.  See how many you can work into a sentence today!

Now on to "I'd rather be..." Monday.

1)  I'd rather be at work than at the local nature center where they decided to have an unannounced "snake day" on Saturday, at the same time as our usual star show at the planetarium.   Imagine MB, surrounded by snakes.  Then put her in the next room and turn out the lights.  Ooooh, yeah.  That was fun.

2)  I'd rather be at work than rifling through little boy clothing, trying to decide what to pack away, what to give away and what still might fit someone.  While LG "helped".

Other than that, meh, I'd rather be at home.

Have a good Monday all!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

It really is Tuesday, isn't it?  Well, you know what to do.  Put on your tinfoil hat, gather up your random and head on over to Keely's.  She's having some plumbing issues, so you might want to make a trip to the potty first.

->  Ok, because you asked, I will rant on the pre-school kid thing.  First, in the name of fairness, here's the article I read:

It basically says that a preschooler is being denied entrance into the local Catholic kindergarten because his parents are lesbians.  He's not being asked to leave the pre-school, just not invited back next year.

Most of you will think that I'm about to say something nasty and snide about the Catholic Church now, but nope, I'm not.  I'm actually thinking they're right about this.  And it's completely fair for them to do this (as it is fair for them to deny benefits to the partners of same sex employees). 

I have three problems with the whole situation.

1)  They're a private school.  They can do whatever they want to achieve the educational goals they set forth. 

2)  Why is ok to be gay, but not ok to be Catholic?  If it's ok to be different, why is one side right and the other side wrong.  When did we stop thinking people could be different and start posing political judgements on people's religious beliefs.  They're not hurting anyone, they just don't want the responsibility of educating a little boy.  They're trying to do what they believe is morally right. 

Last time we let people persecute others based on religious beliefs, oh, wait.  It wasn't Nazi Germany, it was right here in America with the Muslims.  Damn, and we thought we had learned a lesson and were all sort of superior...

Here's a link to the priest's blog where he talks about the decision:

3)  Why the hell would you put your little kid in the middle of this?  The parents know that the Catholic church doesn't support gay unions.  Why would you send your kid to a Catholic school (especially in a town that has a lot of good private schools that aren't religious) if you're gay?  Seems to me like the parents might want to pick this fight.  

I don't even know why this bothers me so much.  The stance on homosexuality is one of the things I don't like about the Catholic Church.  But it really irks me that it has become the social norm to see religion (especially Christianity and Muslim) as a negative political force that needs to be brought to justice.

See, this is why I didn't want to talk about it last week.  Look at all the space it took up?  And now you're either pissed at me, or pissed at the situation, right?  Argh.  I apologize.

 Now we're just going to take the Segue to things that are much more random:

->  On occasion, my kid amazes me.  Really just blows my mind.  This weekend we went to see the buzzards in Hinkley, Ohio (come back Thursday if you want to see pictures.)  On the trip home, as we all slouched lazily in our seats, he started to sing "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star".  All the words.  Clearly.  No mistakes, no gaps.  I've never actually heard him sing a real song before.  Tidbits and lines, sure, but a whole song, beginning to end?  Never.  By the hundreth time (did I mention he didn't stop?), it was a whole lot less cute, but still impressive.  Come on, he's two.  He barely speaks in full sentences.

->  I'd tell you what little o is up to, but his godparents are coming to dinner tonight and he needs to have some new tricks to show them.  You know, to prove his worth and all.

->I have a commenter that keeps trying to guess little o's name.  I'm pretty sure it's the same person, but they sign on anonymously.  I always delete their comment, lest some one else get any ideas.  The funny thing?  They still haven't gotten it right.  7 months later, still haven't guessed it.  Unless they're playing tricks with my head.  Completely possible.

->  I don't do product endorsement, but when a company really comes through, I feel the need to tell everyone I know.  The people at SkipHop are heros in my book.  LG's monkey backpack sustained an injury at school (sorry, I can't find a picture of it right now).  Anyhoodle, it lost one of the buttons that are supposed to be it's nose.  And for a week, LG would point to the backpack and say, "Monkey hurt.  Ouchie Monkey.  Bandaid?"  It was so sad.  So, I did what any idiot mother would do, and called to see if they had a replacement button I could put on.  The customer service lady said she wasn't sure what they could do, but send her a picture so she could see it.  Three days later, a completely new monkey came in the mail.  Didn't have to pay, didn't have to send back the old one.  Just gave me a new one.  How wonderful is that?  Really, if you're looking for a quality school bag for the kids, or a great diaper bag, they are the folks to turn to.

Come back Thursday.  I'm going to throw up some pictures of the buzzards and we'll all have a good time.  For now, go see Keely and have some more random.  That's what Tuesday's for, after all.

Monday, March 22, 2010

I'd rather be... Monday

Nope, no fancy buttons, no need to link us to your own page.  For "I'd Rather Be..."   Monday, all you have to do is stop on by and leave a comment.

For today's I'd rather be, we'll be using personal experience...

'I'd rather be at work than be home sick.  Being referred to as "The girl who got sick at the dentist office this morning."'

You'd think I would have gotten out of the chair after she gagged me the 2nd time, but no.  I stuck around for more.  Funny thing?  When I was done, she sat me right back and finished cleaning my teeth.   I'd better have the cleanest teeth in Cleveland, that's all I have to say.

Please feel free to one up me.  Make my day.  Leave us all a comment and tell us what awful thing out there makes you prefer your co-workers.  

For the unemployed (I realize we've been leaving you out for the past few weeks.  I apologize.  Please, join our misery)- feel free to make it "I'd rather be searching the internet for semi-gainful employment than..."  Trust me, I know what it's like to be un-happily unemployed, and it ain't a paid vacation.

Happy Monday, all.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

As promised:

May the sun always find you on a rainy day,
When you need to be home may you find a way.
May you always have courage to take a chance,
And never find frogs in your underpants!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

It's Tuesday again.  I'm going on so little sleep, I can't even give you an intro.  You're just going to have to put on your wellies and wade into the random today.

->  So, "I'd rather be at work than...." Mondays are going well.  Please stop by on Monday afternoon and tell me what your job is better than.

->  I've started getting Spanish lessons through my e-mail from Berlitz.  I feel so darn international right now.  The co-worker who sits next to my cube is Puerto Rican, so he's helping me with pronunciation.  I've made a realization, though.  For every new bit of information my brain takes in, it spits an old piece of information out.  So every time I learn a new word, I can't help but wonder what I've lost.  Has anyone seen my car keys?

-> Oh, yes.  LG is a rock star.  His tat says, "Mama".  Cause we all know rock stars just love their Moms.  His girlfriend was equally cute.  She has a bedazzled white shirt that said "Rock Star" in rhinestones, with her jean skirt and black leggings.  Little pink converse sticking out the bottoms.  LG has his black high top converse with the flames to complete his outfit.  Hysterical, I tell you.

->  I was going to go all controversial about that kid who was rejected from the Catholic kindergarten in Colorado because his moms are lesbians, but I'm just too tired for controversy.  

->  Being audited is like being pecked to death by ducks.  

->  The kids both have coughs, and it affects them quite differently.  Little o just has trouble breathing and almost sounds as though he's choking, but seems to sleep right through it.  He just looks like he's in pain.  LG, however, coughs until he gags, and then proceeds to get sick.  That should summarize quite nicely why I didn't sleep at all last night.  Between going in to check and make sure that little o was still breathing, and listening for sounds of imminent barf, I barely napped.  Explains the lam-o post today, I hope.

Ok, I have to get going.  Really.  One of my unstated new year resolutions was to try to make friends (in Ohio) with people that my husband didn't go to high school with.  To support that,  I'm going to lunch with one of the other moms from LG's school.  Yeah, because I'm all sorts of breaking out over here.  I went from mooching off my husband's friends, to mooching off my son's friends.  One day I'll make my own friends, I promise.

Have a good Tuesday, all.  Come back tomorrow to see the boys dressed up in their green.  

Monday, March 15, 2010

I'd Rather Be... Monday

It's "I'd Rather Be" Monday, again.  Our staff meeting isn't until noon today, but I thought I'd get this up early so we could start the audience participation.  Last week was an interesting mix, so it's worth at least another round today.  

Ooofk.  Ok, I have auditors at my office  today.  It's hard to imagine any place that would be worse than this.  But for you guys, I'll try:

1)  I'd rather be at work than walking a tightrope over a tank of hungry pirhanas.

2)  I'd rather be at work than in the waiting room at the ER.

3)  I'd rather be at work than wrestling with my "not quite sick enough to stay home, but just sick enough to be outright grouchy" 2 year old.

That almost makes the auditors seem a little better.  Now it's your turn.  Give me some hope, people. 

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spin Cycle- Deja what the hell just happened here?

Time again for "The Spin Cycle" (cue Twilight Zone music here)- where you only think you know what the hell I'm talking about.  When I've befuddled you enough, go see Sprite's Keeper, and see what ghosts haunt her dreams at night...

I am a complete humbug about the paranormal.  I don't believe in any of it.  Ghosts, the sixth sense, fortunes, any of that schtuffs.

Last week I was watching that silly Ghost Hunter show (I didn't know where the remote was and was too lazy to put little o down to change the channel manually.  Shut up.)  PB came in, sat down and watched for about another 10 minutes.  At which point this coversation happened,

"Ghosts?  I never knew you believed in ghosts."

"I don't."

"So, this is as stupid to you as it is to me?"

"What the fact that the keep claiming to hear and see things that the camera isn't catching?  That they're acting like they're all alone and frightened when we all know that there's a camera crew standing behind them?  Yeah, it's pretty stupid.  I want popcorn."

"I'll find the remote and take O.  You make popcorn."

See, I don't get it.  There are logical explanations for almost all the "paranormal" things people experience.  It just seems silly to me.   And if it is real, shows like this one would make any sane ghost turn to the dark side (though this one was supposed to be set in an asylum in Pennsylvania, so maybe it was the insane ghosts trying to get messages through ineffectively?)

As for that "sixth sense", to me it's common sense.  Two year old playing quietly in the other room?  Look for the scissors and the cat, quick.  That's not extra sensory perception.  That's taking a second to think about reality.  It's like the "don't go down in the basement" rule.  It's not ESP to know that monsters hide in the basement.  It's common knowledge that seems to elude most blond horror flick chicks.  People who have "ESP"  just pay closer attention that the rest of us, I think.

When I heard weird noises in the basement?  I immediately wondered what was trying to burrow into the house, not if someone died in it 100 years ago and wanted my attention.  Never once have I thought my parents stuck around to try to get a message to me (though on occasion I imagine my Mom laughing at my me when LG is being particularly surly).

I have been known to have my palm or tarot read at a Renaissance Faire or two, but that's more for the experience than the information provided.  (Oh, and if I live past 60?  I'm going to find the palm reader and ask for a refund).

And I'm not too big to admit that I've experienced deja` vu.  That sense that I've done something before and I know I haven't.  I chalk that up to my own insanity, though.  My mind isn't above screwing with me just for fun.  It does get bored from lack of use, after all. 

Here's my caveat, though (no fine print required).  If I lived 100 years ago, I would totally believe all this stuff.  Ghosts, ESP, all of it.  But the minute science stepped in and starting disproving most of it?  I was done.  Even the stuff we can't explain right now?  Give it another 100 years.  Fewer and fewer mysteries.

But, by all means, if you believe in this stuff, I support you 100%.  Maybe I'm just not in tune to my inner scarf and patchouli wearing swami feelings or something.  Don't give me dirty looks if I giggle at your seance, though.  I just showed up for the free wine.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts...

Welcome to Tuesday, internets.  I'll be your host, MB.  When you're all done here, go visit Keely, alias Un-Mom, and she'll really make your Tuesday random.  

->First things first, how freaking lazy have we gotten as a blogging community?  Have you noticed this?  Responses to Random Tuesday Thoughts on FRIDAY?  People going a whole week without a post?  Me missing a Tuesday completely?  Egad.  It's like February finally got to us.  But I've noticed we're springing back this week.  The random sunshine up north is finally thawing out the thoughts.

->Ever notice that when you don't want something, it's always around and when you need it, it's gone? regularly has digital photo frames up for sale at obscenely low prices.  Then PB asked for one for Father's Day.  Since then?  Not a single frame for sale.  Grumble, grumble, grumble.

->  I have to ask.  What's wrong with being middle aged?  Really, when you hit 40 and realize you're in the middle.  Uhm, you're only 40!  And you have another 40 years of living to do!  That's a lot of years left, people!  Years, some of which you'll be retired.  No school, no kids.  Hell, I want to be middle aged now.

->  Ok, for all the people who have asked why I don't have a follow thingy, I have remedied the situation.  Look down below.  All the way down below.  Click the little button down on the bottom.  Now you can legally stalk me.  Happy?  I know I am.  

->  Thursday is "Rock Star" day at school.  I know, how cool is LG's school, right?  But when I got the notice I had a problem.  Uhm, what do I put LG in to dress him up like a rock star?  I asked PB's advice and he laughed at me.  Outright gaffawed.  His response?  "You're problem is that your kid always goes to school looking like a rock star.  Long sleeved t-shirt under short sleeved one.  Jeans.  Black high top converse with flames on them?  Not exactly standard 2 year old apparel.  He could be the lead guitar in an indie band already."  Oh, uhm, yeah.  I guess.  I'm still going to throw on a bandana and some spray on hair color.  Maybe give him a fauxhawk.   I draw the line at spandex, though (sorry David Lee Roth.  that's just too much, even for me.)

->  When will some people learn?  Last night PB insisted the he went to HS with little o's godfather.  But he didn't.  They went to the same HS, but not at the same time.  How do I know this?  Uncle C is my age.  And PB and I would have missed each other by a year.  But he pigheadedly went through his year book (while I sent a quick text message to confirm my rightness).  And the verdict?  Yeah, I'm right.  As usual, thanks.   I did a victory dance.  It was a small one, though.

->  LG is now officially pacifier free.  Fully.  Even at night.  Because it had become like crack.  He'd get to the end of his bath and start the "paci?  paci?"  mantra.  He didn't care about stories or songs, as long as he had the paci.  It was almost creepy, he was that attached.  So, we went to a "big boy" bed this weekend, and the paci went with the crib.  He definitely noticed its absence, but he's living through it.  I know, half of you are cheering us on while the other half are saying, "If it made him happy, who cares if he had a paci?"  Trust me.  It's better this way.  Because my kid would have been the one to go to college with a paci.  

->  Yesterday's "I'd rather be..."  Monday went pretty well.  You guys are a creative bunch.  We really might make that a regular thing.  Because by the end of the day?  I was actually happy to be at work (rather than, say, dead.  or in labor.)

Ok, back to the grind stone.  The Auditors arrive tomorrow promptly at 7:30.  I must be ready for them.  And look like I care.  My boss is out of town, though.  It's really, really hard to care today.  Must force myself.

Monday, March 8, 2010

"I'd Rather Be" Monday

Happy Monday!  I know, you're not used to seeing me this early in the week.  Bear with me.  In our office today, my boss was excited about the new found sunshine.  He decided to start a new "tradition" at our Monday morning meetings.    Before the meeting officially starts, we share our "I'd rather be at work than..."

It was hysterical.  And helpful.  

"I'd rather be at work than in the unemployment line."

"I'd rather be at work than in a tank full of hungry sharks."

"I'd rather be at work than scrubbing toilets at a beach resort."

"I'd rather be at work than shoveling snow."

Made us all appreciate sitting down at our desks, at least.

So, tell me, what would you rather be at work than?  Fill me in.  I just might start blogging on Mondays to let you know the gems my co-workers come up with!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Spin Cycle- Sports

Spin, spin, spin.  Yeah, I'm getting this one just under the wire.  Considering the theme, maybe I'm the last batter up at the bottom of the 9th?  Let's hope it's a home run, shall we?

Let me start this post by reminding everyone that I am 5 feet tall and weigh 100lbs soaking wet.  By no powers of my own.  It's always been this way (no, don't ask me about my diet.  I'm pretty sure there's a reason that Yoohoo and Twinkies are not marketed as diet foods).  Add to this fact that I have the coordination of a chimp on acid.  No, I'm not kidding.

Needless to say, I've had a tentative relationship with sports.  As a kid, I was always the  last one picked for teams.  Which is to say, I wasn't picked.  Mostly, some poor group of kids got stuck with me.  No, stop trying.  There is not a single team sport that small, uncoordinated girls excel at.  I promise.  Even swimming favors the tall and strong.  There were a few sports that I didn't completely suck at (I did play field hockey and swim in HS), but I was never MVP or anything like that.  I played first string on the FH team in HS only because the options for the coach were limited.

And then came college (enter a luminous glow).  Where they had a rowing team (cue angels singing).  No, no (screeching record sounding a halt) I didn't row.  5 feet tall, remember?  The rowing team recruited me as a coxswain.  The only competitive team sport in the world that values being as small as possible.  Where it's such an advantage to be small that they have low limits to keep things competitive!  Ahhhh.

Shake the image that the coxswain is just a little person who yells all day.  These days they have a microphone system that runs through the bottom of the boat, so no yelling is necessary.  But more important is that yelling at the crew is the least of the coxswain's jobs.  Please note that a rowing shell is about 55 feet long.  Someone has to steer that banana down the river.  And the coxswain is the only one who can actually see where the boat is going (everyone else faces backwards).  So, the most important thing a coxswain does is steer.  Straight.  Or the best possible route down the river (whichever is necessary for that race).  There are tactics, and strategy and all sorts of other stuff, too.  It's no small job.  

I had finally found a sport for me.  It didn't hurt that no physical exertion was required, either.  I coxed all through college, and for a long time after that.  I coached for a long time, too.  I even met PB through rowing.  He was coaching out of the same boathouse I was back in the mid-2000's (wow, that looks awkward, doesn't it?  How exactly are we supposed to denote that period of time?)

-->  Short side story.  PB and I met in the summer of 2003.  I had been coaching for about 7 years at that point.  He was fresh out of college.  He was still the happy little lab pup, with the floppy ears and the over large feet.  I was the middle age dog who has learned to wait calmly for everything.  He had always rowed with well funded programs.  Real coaches, and lots of equipment. (don't get me wrong, I was this way straight out of school, too)  But now we were rowing in a boathouse of two college clubs.  Underfunded, under staffed.  Under everything.  I'm pretty sure I  wanted to smack that happy go lucky smile off his face when we first met.  Nope, I'm sure of it.  Needless to say, the goofy smile never left his face, and I grew to appreciate and even like it in the end.  Sometimes the old dog makes the young pup grouchy.  Sometimes the young pup reminds the old dog how much fun it is to chase your tail, right?

-->  Back to the story.  Oh, wait, was there more to the story?  Eh, maybe not.  Rowing just turned out to be my sport.

Recently I had an inner revelation, though.  I had no idea why LG's growing problems bothered me so much.  Until I thought about this post.  Nobody wants to be the littliest in the class, but especially if you're a boy.  You have to be extra scrappy if you're going to make it in playground sports.  I'm hoping LG will average out by the time he reaches school.  Because I'm pretty sure my Dad's lessons on how to be the littliest kid on the playground will not go over well at a modern school.  Hit fast and hit hard don't really scream "I play well with others".  

And with that thought, I'm out.  Till next week, internets.  Have a good one.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Travel Tip Thursday- Hinkley, Ohio...

Whew, it's Thursday already?  What the heck happened to this week?  Who stole my M-W?  Oh, yeah.  The auditors.  Never mind.  We're here now, that's what counts.  But we don't really want to be, so we're heading over to Pseudo's for Travel Tip Thursday!  Click the link at the top (since I have no idea how to make the button a link on FireFox's version of Blogger...)

I know, you want something exotic.  But because I just flipped the calendar to March, I realized that it's almost Buzzard Day!  What the hell is Buzzard Day, you ask?  Oh, you just don't know what you're missing (with your Hawaiian sunshine and your sandy beaches and all).

PB and I found Buzzard Day in a feeble attempt to make March in Ohio seem fun.  Apparently, in early spring, many, many turkey vultures (aka buzzards) like to head towards Hinkley, Ohio (read little odd town in the Cleveland vicinity).  Now, to be fair, they come to Cleveland proper, too.  But Hinkley wants to celebrate their return each year.  And they do so with style.

 You head on into the Metroparks to the buzzard roost.  It's where all the cool buzzards hang out.

You visit the Buzzard Scoreboard, to see the buzzard stats for the year.  When the first buzzard flew in, total number sighted so far this year.  Some general stats on the biggest and fattest seen to date.

 Then you can go see a live buzzard!  Ewww, they're ugly.  This one was shy, but they have displays and a guy who will let you pet a birdie if you're brave enough (I had absolutely no desire).

Then you measure yourself up to the "Wing It" board, so see how your wingspan measures up to a buzzards.  PB would make an impressive birdie, no?

In the end, it's a fun day in the country.  An excuse to take a little road trip.  Buy a t-shirt.  This year, I'm hoping LG is interested.  He'll get to run around the field and see some wildlife.  Little o will just enjoy the people.  Hopefully.  

This year's "Return of the Buzzards Day" is March 15th.  If you happen to be in NE Ohio, stop on by.  We'll buy you a "Buzzard" dog...