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Archive for the ‘random’ Category

Sometimes, when I’m really bored and have nothing better to do, I pose random questions to myself.  Questions like, “If I were a Hollywood starlet, what would my wardrobe style be?”
(See guys, there is a small, but very present girly bone somewhere in my body!)
How very tween-ish can I be?  But, you have to admit it’s kind of fun.
 
And then I realize…that there’s not a whole lot on the red carpet that I would want to wear.  In fact, I was able to find exactly three:
Freida Pinto in Chanel Haute Couture
 This dress–with the tie–is so fabulous I can’t even put it into words. Love it!

Jennifer Hudson in Vera Wang

 

Elizabeth Banks in Tommy Hilfiger

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My Thoughts on Tornadoes

You know, I’ve never been particularly afraid of tornadoes*.  Amazingly enough, the logical part of my brain prevails when it says, “you have better things to stress out over than the minute chance you’ll get killed by a tornado.”  Fortunately we don’t get a ton of them here in Ohio. 

But last night I learned what a pain in the ass tornadoes (or lack thereof) really are.

Here’s my tornado countdown from yesterday:

T-6 minutes: Arrive home from work via “the back way” because the highway was backed up for miles.

T-5:30 minutes: Let dogs out to pee.  Say silent prayer for dogs that pee on command.

T-4 minutes: Put confused dogs back in house in order to drive car through back yard and into barn.  Promise horse he will get fed in a few minutes.  Unfortunately, neither of you know it yet, but that’s a lie.

T-2 minutes: Run back to house, closing gates on the way.

T-1 minute: Feed dogs so anti-anxiety drugs can be administered in anticipation of thunder and lightning.

T-0:15 minutes: Begin running back to barn when the dreaded tornado siren begins wailing.  Pause.  Decide shutting barn doors is more important than not getting blown away.

T: Close barn doors and chicken house door.  Ignore hungry horse.  Run back to house.

T+1 minute: Tornado sirens still going off.  Turn on TV.  Watch 45 seconds of weatherman high on “tornado buzz”.

T+2 minutes: Satellite TV goes out.  Same with Clearwire satellite.  (No internet.)  Sky is green.  Decide it’s time to hunker down.

T+4 minutes: Gather essentials (pillow, cell, dog treats, book, book light, Triscuits, ice tea) and dogs in center of house.

T+6 minutes: Get bored.  Glance out window and decide that a beverage run is both warranted and safe.

T+6:30 minutes: Settle in with red wine in a penguin sippy cup (don’t want it to stain the carpet in case of an actual tornado, right?), book, and dogs.  Set a routine: pet dogs, read book, check cell, sip wine.  Repeat 1,000 times.  Waste most of evening, besides the wine & little bit of the book.

~

End result?  No tornado. 

~

*Disclaimer: I’m fully aware that tornadoes pose a serious threat and have been responsible for horrendous destruction and loss of life.  I in no way intend to downplay these painful realities, nor belittle the awesome power of wind being blown in a circle.  In this post I intend to sound cynical, but deep down I respect the raw, unleased power and scariness factor that is the tornado.  I talk big, but I have no desire to face one of those monsters down in person.

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The Week in Review

What a crazy week…

On Monday I remembered how not fun change can be, at least at first.  We have a bunch of staff changes at work and, while my position keeps me removed from the “extra work” of training most new employees, we’re all a little extra stressed out.  Personalities have yet to gel and new schedules have yet to be adapted to.  We’ll get there, but sometimes the trip just isn’t that much fun.

On Tuesday I visited my 85 1/2-year-old grandpa in the hospital in Columbus, which is 2 hours from me.  He was admitted last Friday for respiratory distress (he has congestive heart failure) and initially had been given a pretty grave prognosis.  I stayed for a little over 3 hours and we sat and talked the entire time, which meant so much to me.  Grandpa told me lots of family stories–including some I’d never heard before–particularly about my grandma, who passed away when I was eight.  It was a long evening (I had to be at work at 7:30am the next morning), but so so so worth it to spend some quality time with my gpa and see him starting to feel better.

On Wednesday Grandpa was released from the hospital.  Yay, so happy!  He’s now in a residential physical therapy program at a nursing home.  While he’s not happy about being there for the next two weeks, I’m so glad he decided to go.

On Thursday my boss reaffirmed her awesomeness.  I have been lucky enough to have 4 bosses over the years who are extraordinary leaders.  She is one of the four.

On Friday I was reminded just how unpleasant spring allergies in the Miami Valley can be.  Blech.  New Mexico is calling my name!

On Saturday, I enjoyed a nice caffeine/sugar high (courtesy of our practice owner and Bill’s Donuts).  After work I took a much-needed, very long nap to celebrate the end of the week.

So, how was your week?

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The Mortal Instruments IV: City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

City of Fallen Angels takes place two months after the events of City of Glass. In it, a mysterious someone’s killing the Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine’s Circle and displaying their bodies around New York City in a manner designed to provoke hostility between Downworlders and Shadowhunters, leaving tensions running high in the city and disrupting Clary’s plan to lead as normal a life as she can — training to be a Shadowhunter, and pursuing her relationship with Jace. As Jace and Clary delve into the issue of the murdered Shadowhunters, they discover a mystery that has deeply personal consequences for them — consequences that may strengthen their relationship, or rip it apart forever. Meanwhile, internecine warfare among vampires is tearing the Downworld community apart, and only Simon — the Daylighter who everyone wants on their side — can decide the outcome; too bad he wants nothing to do with Downworld politics. Love, blood, betrayal and revenge: the stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels. 

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 4.5.11 (tomorrow!!).  Cassandra Clare is brilliant and TMI has quickly become my new favorite YA fantasy series!

Chronicles of the Warlands #4: Warcry by Elizabeth Vaughan
All is not well in Xy. There is a faction of nobles who are plotting against the Queen and her barbarian warlord. As cultures clash and tempers flare, Heath and the fierce Plains warrior woman Atira of the Bear must come together to fight the conspiracy… and to search their hearts for something deeper than raw passion.

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 5.3.11.  My only beef with Elizabeth Vaughan is her insistance on keeping her day job.  See, if she devoted all of her time to writing, then I’d have more of her fabulous books to read.  Selfish of me, I know.

Kate Daniels #5: Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews

Kate Daniels has quit the Order of Merciful Aid, but starting her own business isn’t easy when the Order starts disparaging her good name. And being the mate of the Beast Lord doesn’t bring in the customers, either. So when Atlanta’s premier Master of the Dead asks for help with a vampire, Kate jumps at the chance. Unfortunately, this is one case where Kate should have looked before she leapt.

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 5.31.11.  Can.  Not.  Wait.  I’ve been going through Ilona Andrews withdrawl for way too long now!

Wolves of Mercy Falls #3: Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

In Maggie Stiefvater’s SHIVER, Grace and Sam found each other. In LINGER, they fought to be together. Now, in FOREVER, the stakes are even higher than before. Wolves are being hunted. Lives are being threatened. And love is harder and harder to hold on to as death comes closing in.

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 7.12.11.  The only way to describe Maggie Stiefvater’s writing is “gorgeous prose”.

The Power of Six by Pittacus Lore

I’ve seen him on the news. Followed the stories about what happened in Ohio. John Smith, out there, on the run. To the world, he’s a mystery. But to me . . . he’s one of us.

Nine of us came here, but sometimes I wonder if time has changed us—if we all still believe in our mission. How can I know? There are six of us left. We’re hiding, blending in, avoiding contact with one another . . . but our Legacies are developing, and soon we’ll be equipped to fight. Is John Number Four, and is his appearance the sign I’ve been waiting for? And what about Number Five and Six? Could one of them be the raven-haired girl with the stormy eyes from my dreams? The girl with powers that are beyond anything I could ever imagine? The girl who may be strong enough to bring the six of us together?

They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.
They tried to catch Number Four in Ohio—and failed.

I am Number Seven. One of six still alive.

And I’m ready to fight.

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 8.23.11.  I’m curious to see how this second installment of the Lorien Legacies stacks up to the first (I Am Number Four).

Matched Trilogy #2: Crossed by Ally Condie

In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky — taken by the Society to his certain death — only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake.

Cassia’s quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander — who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia’s heart — change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.

Goodreads’ synopsis

To be released 11.1.11.  If you’ve read Matched, you know the cover of Crossed says it all.

~

Others:

Demon Trappers #2: Soul Thief by Jana Oliver (TBR: 9.2.11)*

~

*Has anyone seen a cover or reviews of Soul Thief?  I couldn’t find much about it…

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In addition to–or, rather, in conjunction with–my decision to give up on books if they don’t catch my interest by page 50, I also vowed to take more reading gambles in 2011.  The Orange Eats Creeps was just such a gamble when I found it recommended on an NPR book blogger’s “Weird and Wonderful Books: 2010’s Hidden Gems” list. 

Other reviews were interesting, to say the least.

Like something you read on the underside of a freeway overpass in a fever dream. The Orange Eats Creeps is visionary, pervy, unhinged. It will mess you up.” -Shelley Jackson

And so I began the adventure of the twisted poetry.  While reading, I occasionally wondered at the constant vulgarity of the prose, frequently felt metaphors sailing over my head, and was always delighted when a phrase jumped out at me.  While I hated certain aspects–the metaphors I couldn’t decipher!–I loved the parts that spoke to me, and to me only.

My traumas are individual and specific and private…”

The parts that made sense…

Walking; walking all night on the roadkill tour of Oregon.  Flattened hawks every few miles on the freeway.  How do you run over a bird of prey?”

And the parts that didn’t…

At dawn I dug up my dream cat, collapsed dead in the snow.  I held up the damp hide as snow fell silently around us.  I kept digging away and found more and more signs of a past race of modified creatures—a mass grave of psychic cat-rats.”

I tugged at my raw throat and coughed forth an owl pellet.  My eyes pounding out of my head, fighting passing out I tore at it, breaking it open with my hands I discovered the fine white bones of my dream cat. I had eaten him!”

But even for those words that didn’t exactly make sense, I loved the way they sounded in my head.

The wild blackberry bush consumed it all, lapped up its death, this gift that stained its own blossoms and caught like whiskers in my throat.  I swallowed a wild pulpy mass of blood and tiny white whiskers gathered in the palm of my hand.  My hand devours wild blackberries.  We are all voracious for wild blackberries.  We eat without care until the bushes are reduced to piles of whiskers and bramble.  We eat all the blossoms, they plump in my mouth and I spit out half-formed blackberry babies.”

And, rather than annoying me as I thought they would, the repeated phrases and themes gave the book a sense of familiarity toward the end.

Cats rats snakes

            Roadside diners

                        Chamomile vagrants vomit

                                    Orange

                                                Men bones blood

                                                            Rape

                                                                        Insects calico poison

                                                                                    Convenience stores

                                                                                                Sugar hippies teens

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A Decade Ago…

On December 31st, 1999, I was:

~16 years old and a junior at Federal Hocking High School in Stewart, Ohio

~5’10” and 115 lbs.

~Suffering from a bad haircut

~The biggest klutz you ever met

~Taller than all the girls and 90% of the boys at my school

~Trying to adjust to wearing glasses

~Not allowed to wear makeup or shorts…though it didn’t mean I never did!

~Getting my driver’s license

~On our high school newspaper staff and track team

~Very religous and preparing to join the Catholic Church

~Probably trying too hard…at just about everything

~An admitted brown noser/teacher’s pet

~Absolutely certain that my best friend and I would be besties forever

~Flying for the first time…and flew home from NC in a hurricane

~Spending plenty of time daydreaming about my first kiss, which had yet to happen (and wouldn’t for another 2 years)

~Only slightly worried about Y2K

~

What were YOU doing 10 years ago?

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Thursday’s Thoughts

Today I soaked a kitty’s sore paw at work.  As I was doing so, said kitty looked at me with the most disgusted, incredulous, pitiful expression. 

His eyes screamed, “Hey, IDIOT, don’t you know that felines DON’T DO WATER!?!?  This stuff is wet and icky and everything that I spend my life avoiding.  You are a horrible person.” at me. 

I felt really bad…until he started doing back flips while attempting to snag me with his back talons.

~

Also, I had an awful, horrible migraine today.  I wanted to curl up in a ball and wake up in next week. 

What did I do?  Clocked in at 7:30am, clocked out at 7:21pm. 

Some days it would be nice to be weak. 

~

In other news, I’m officially at the beginning of a four-day weekend.  Heck yeah!

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