Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Early Turkey Day

Today is bittersweet. I get to go home with Jill and Gord for the holiday, but last night was very rough on Scott, so I feel like I'm leaving him when he needs someone the most. He had a reaction to the pain meds (we think) and threw up most of the night. And if you can imagine what it must feel like to have tummy acid come up through your scabbed throat (exposed muscle only barely covered with a white 'membrane' as they call it), times that by 20 and I bet we'd have a fair idea. He's still on a diet of soup, ice cream, yogurt and the like.

I'll be at my parent's house until Sunday, so I hope you'll all excuse me if I don't write while I'm there. Dial-up is hard to settle with once you've gotten used to wireless.

In other news, Offspring has a new album out and every time I hear their sound I think of my eighth grade year and the summer after. Offspring was HUGE in my hometown for a while. It sounds like this album is doing great as well.


Today I am a sad kitten and hot cocoa (but not hot enough to burn).

Monday, November 24, 2008

JFK and the AMAs

Does everyone love Owl City yet? Jillian showed me how to make a 'mixed tape' over the weekend and I'm loving it. I'll probably change it every week or so, that way you guys never get bored.

My weekend was good. I got some fresh air with Jill, Gord, Amanda and Sean on Saturday by spending a few hours in the Bowl and Pitcher area. I also went shopping for the interview I'm having today. I've got a very snazzy outfit all lined up, but I'm not the biggest fan of shopping, so it was a kind of like nails on a chalkboard for me.

Scott didn't really improve like we thought he would. He showed a lot of improvement on Friday so we thought he was through the worst of it, but he wasn't. The pain still comes and goes just as bad as it had last week. He'll run out of pain meds soon, though, so hopefully he improves soon!

I've started reading Angle of Repose to keep me from watching tv 24/7 while I'm taking care of him, but I must admit I watch my fair share of it. Since this weekend marked the anniversary of JFK's assassination several tv stations showed JFK-related films. On Saturday night I watched Oliver Stone's "JFK" and became enraged that such a cover-up could happen at such a high political level. I also started to feel mad at the older generations who hadn't relaid to my generation the severity and depth of such an outrageous event. Without anyone to tell us these things, most of us won't know the details! Of course I knew it had happened and that there was a 'grassy knoll' theory, but my U.S. History classes never covered the details.

Then, the following night, I watched portions of a documentary on the JKF assassination and felt like an idiot for believing ALL the 'facts' Oliver Stone had included in his storyline. Some of the more paramount points in the movie's case were made up... However, many of the loopholes still held strong. Although I'm not as up-in-arms about it as I was on Saturday night, I'm still taken aback that such an event can occur and some questions, 40 years later, have yet to be answered.

I also watched the American Music Awards. Well, not ALL of them, because we all know the speeches are boring. I did, however, listen to Kanye's speech, just to see what crazy thing he'd say this time, and, of course, after winning best album of the year of some such business, he gave it away to Lil Wayne. WHAT? Goodness. All is madness. I did, nevertheless, get my fill of performances. From Coldplay to Pink, from Rihanna to Sarah Mclaughlin, from Ne-yo to The Pussycat Dolls, it was good stuff! I especially liked Pink's song. I love all the costumes/dresses, the stage designs and ritzy special effects.

Well, it's about time for Scott's meds. Today I am a cat and Arizona Tea.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Movies and Holidays

Ahoy! I am currently watching Love Actually which is THE BEST holiday movie of ALL TIME. Aside from the holiday category, it is also on my top ten list of Best Movies of All Time. I gives me that warm fuzzy feeling is so many different ways that I begin to lose track and forget that I hate Commercial Christmas so much.

I can't believe the holidays (well, Christmas really) is already here. THANKSGIVING ISN'T EVEN HERE YET PEOPLE! And I can already find radio channels dedicated solely to Christmas carols. Below is an excerpt from The Only Kayak, a book I just finished, the middle phrase encompassing my thoughts on the subject.

"Nature and technology have an uneasy relationship, yet each has something to offer. One is where we came from, the other is where we’re going. One shrinks as the other grows. One loses in a war, the other wins and determines winners. One makes you feel vulnerable, a subject of the Earth, the other makes you feel powerful, a lord of the Earth. One is Christ in the desert finding clarity, the other is Christmas at Macy’s buying Calvin Klein. One explains death and disease while the other attempts to eradicate them. One is accepting what comes your way, the other is hacking DNA. One teaches grace, the other breeds pride. One is about slowing ourselves down, the other is about making things fast. One is words, the other word processing. One is stories, the other statistics."

I picked up a few copies of my most recent published article in the Inland Business Catalyst. It's always exciting to see your name in glossy print. It was quite a pick-me-up after spending most of the week at home tending to Scott. He's feeling slightly better, by the way. The last 2 days have been full of excruciating pain but he might be through the thick of it.

I should mention, having named today's entry after cinematic pastimes, that I've heard from 3 different people so far that the new James Bond movie isn't all it's cracked up to be. Not horrible, but not altogether the expected James Bond package either. Please provide feedback if you've seen it.

Also, if you care to see pictures of me in the COOLEST (well, mostly, most embarrassing) outfit ever, check out

Today I am a penguin and a hot rum tea.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Another Day in Sweatpants

Greetings! I didn't win my pool game last night... I played against a 1 and she beat me (I'm a 2), but she had a REALLY good game. I didn't play poorly; I played my usual nervous, okay way, but she put two down with every rack she broke and she was playing above her rank. Much thanks to Tom (one of my teammates) who always has a way of making me feel like I don't suck as completely as I think I do. He's always telling me that 'it was a tough shot,' that 'she's having a good night,' and 'you've got the right idea.' It's good to have a fan squad!

I must take this opportunity to tell you all about a band I really like. Granted, I've only listened to about 6 of their songs, but I love them so much that I can't move past these 6 to hear news ones quite yet; I haven't soaked up all I can from these first ones yet. The band is Theory of a Deadman and they sound very similar to Nickleback (the majority of stuff you'll find on their record, not the slow dumb songs the radio chooses to play). If you don't like Nickleback, I wouldn't recommend them, but if you do... VERY good stuff.

It's Scott's third day of recovery and it's supposed to start getting worse. He says he's a ten out of ten on the pain scale, ten being the most painful. So today is another day in sweatpants for us. I'm going to work a bit more refining that book I copy edited in Maui and check out a website for freelance writers.

For all my friends who don't know about Jillian's blog, please check it out to find pictures from Halloween. They are VERY entertaining! :) Her most recent post is about our president-elect, but if you scroll down you'll find the pictures. Enjoy!

Take care everyone! Today I am a dolphin and a thick mango smoothie.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Greetings! Sorry it's been so long between entries. For not having a job, I tend to stay fairly busy! First of all, I must start off by encouraging you all to listen to The Beatles today. Right now, if at all possible. I finally finished that great book I had mentioned before, in which the author speaks highly of the band. Eventually he wore me down and I put some Beatles on my playlist. It has some strange way of making everything feel more in place, a little lighter, a little easier.

I've had a busy couple of days. Friday night we enjoyed the delights of The Davenport bar, which is horribly overpriced in the beer selection, but mighty tasty in the margarita/hot drinks section. Much thanks to Tim, my friend who works there, and Marry, our waitress.

Saturday was the 15th, and since Scott would be working the next day and I would be rafting, we tried to celebrate our anniversary (7 months) early.

Sunday was crazy-fun, although incredibly cold. I rose early to catch a ride to the Cashmere/Leavenworth area for a rafting trip. Much thanks to all those who supplied what made up my wet-suite outfit. I must've borrowed gear from 4 different people, but I ended up with a setup that kept me pretty warm (save my feet... which I couldn't feel by the end of the 5-hour trip. I could only tell that walking on the rocky, muddy ground made my feet ache, yet the ability to tell temperature at that point had failed.) While we started with 7 kayaks and 4 people in the raft, we ended with 5 kayaks and 5 people in the raft! No worries, no one died. But one kayak did get cracked and one member bailed halfway through (don't worry, he walked to a nearby bridge and got a cushy ride in a cop car back to his truck). The water was INTENSE! The biggest I've ever been on and very thrilling. I'd love to do it again, but perhaps it warmer weather. :)

Yesterday was Scott's last day of freedom before his surgery today. He was rather afraid he might not make it through the procedure (too many horror stories to listen to these days) so he tried to live yesterday like it was his last, which included a stop at Azteca for some great food. The procedure today (getting his tonsels and adnoids removed) went very well, although it took longer than expected because, to be quite honest, his tonsels were much larger than the doctor expected them to be. He's sleeping right now and I'll keep careful watch over him for the next week to two weeks; this sort of recovery isn't quick, nor easy. Hopefully I'll make good use of his sleep hours by applying to more jobs. To be frank, however, it isn't a very thrilling or upbeat process; it just gets a little more depressing with every rejection letter.

Much love and cheer! Today I am a rabbit and a warm chai.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Muscles and Music Videos (but not together, don't worry)

I am proud to report that I've gone to the gym 3 of the past 4 days and I'm feeling better already! My initial shock at my diminishing muscle mass is slowly being reversed. Today the gym was very packed for some strange reason, but even that didn't get me down.

It's still raining, however, and that's been awfully annoying. Scott and I had to run a few errands yesterday afternoon and the crummy weather didn't help things.

Tonight will mark my return to the pool circuit and I'm feeling a bit uneasy. I've only played one game of pool since my leave of absence and it was a rather poor one. Wish me luck!

Another reason I need a new car: I got into my car this morning (having not used it in a full day and half) and found the floorboard completely soaked with water. I'm not sure if this is just from past trips when I had wet shoes and the cold weather hasn't allowed for the chance for it to dry up, or if something entirely different and more depressing is going on. Either way, not a very encouraging find.

So Kanye West has a new hit out. And I'm not a big fan of him, just so we're all on the same page with that. I find him a bit too egotistical and materialistic, to put it nicely. However. The video to his newest song, Love Lockdown, is an exception. First of all, the videography is incredibly well done. The visuals fit the rise and fall of tempo flawlessly. I also found the concept of using African animistic/voodoo-like characters particularly interesting. He mixed those characters with a god-like worship of the female figure; he juxtaposed those traditional, more 'primal' images with western-styled skin-obsessed images of femininity. I havne't gone to the lengths of looking up the lyrics, but the video gives me this impression: when trying to put love under wraps, trying to turn love off, one finds it's like trying to hide an entire tribe of West Africans in a small apartment. One can try to ignore it, but that basic attribute (being drawn to love) is the core to humanity, and no amount of distraction will hide the elephant in the room. While I'm not necessarily condoning the video, I'm simply saying it's interesting enough to hold my attention.

Ultimately I have these two reflections on the video: 1) I haven't seen such a unique use of contrast, color and videography for quite some time. 2) It's odd that the same man who sang "Jesus Walks" would use animistic/voodoo images, promoting these traditions to the exhalted spotlight of mainstream media.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Connected Yet Again!

HURAYYY! We got the internet at the house yesterday so I can, once again, blog as often as possible and check my email constantly (a habit I got used to in college and haven't quite broken yet). It will also greatly advance my efforts to look for a new job, since most of that sort of thing is done via internet these days.

Today is overcast again today... I was so excited to see a little blue sky last evening during the sunset (WHICH IS AT 4:30 P.M. THESE DAYS!!! Grr...), it was the first time I saw the color blue in nearly a week. I had my hopes up that today would be sunny and clear. We need the warmth to dry out the pile of leaves in the backyard so we can haul them away.

I've been reading a GREAT book that Grace lent me and I'm already halfway through it. Which is quite a feat for me, since it usually takes several weeks for me to finish a book. (Well, I'm usually employed, too). It's about a man who lives in Alaska and I love all the scenery he describes.

I played my first game of pool in a month and a half. It wasn't very encouraging, but at least it let me know I have some practice to do. Hopefully Scott and I will play again today since it's Tuesday is "Lady's Day" at Far West and we get to play for free. After trying out the table at Lefty's bar, and discovering a great sticky sensation whenever your hand brushed against the rail, we figured it was time to find something classy again.

Today I am a lizard (because I wish I was very hot right now, not shivering under several layers) and a 16 oz maple mocha.

Friday, November 7, 2008

New Avenues

Aloha! I’m sorry I haven’t been writing as often since my return. It’s been raining daily here in Spokane and since the back porch is the only place I can get an internet signal (and I’d rather not get my laptop wet), my entries have been few and far between. I’ve also been out of town for a few days this week. I took the long drive to Winthrop, WA to see my best friend from childhood, Gracie. And what a wonderful trip it was. That area of the state is beautiful beyond words, and seeing it during the transition from fall to winter was even more spectacular. The yellows, oranges and browns of fall hung below the white capped mountaintops, which were close enough to touch. It started to snow at Gracie’s house the morning that I left; a perfect farewell to a wonderful visit.

I’m now turning a new avenue, having made that long-awaited visit and settled back into Spokane restfully. I’m registering with the Forest Service contracting office for writing/editing/analyzing related projects. It’s a new avenue, but not altogether far off from the kind of work I’m looking for. We’ll see how it all goes.

I have a feeling that as the years pass people will always comment, ‘I remember exactly where I was when I learned Obama was elected.’ I, for one, will have a rather unique story to tell. Since Grace doesn’t have a TV, we went down to the Twisp pub to get word of the election status. We arrived just as John McCain took the podium to announce his defeat. (Which, by the way, was the best speech I’ve heard in a while… I was truly impressed). Grace and I were probably the youngest in the crowd; most were middle-aged couples, and some were hippies in their 30s. But the excitement and anticipation in the room was unparalleled.

Oh, and speaking of new avenues! Guess who has a Costco card now? ME! My first proud purchases were a massive can of coco mix and a box of breakfast drink packets (supposed to be packed with vitamins and minerals – I have to get them somehow). Scott signed up earlier this week and got a second ‘household’ card for free. I was kind of surprised at how excited I got about it… Pretty silly, I know, but that’s just me, I guess.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Life in the Pacific Northwest

Greetings from Spokane! This cold and frozen-over city. Today was the first time I was warm since I returned. It took nearly two days to adjust to the climate. My sinuses are still giving me a little grief about it, but I assume they, too, will get over it. I tell you, though, it was quite a surprise to realize (in the heart of Seattle’s airport during a layover) that my legs were suddenly ashy white with dry skin and my lips were horribly chapped. The weather in Hawaii just seems to smooth over these little matters of up-keep.

I highly advise returning to a city in the morning. I had all day long to unpack, do laundry, sort through and organize gift items, run a few errands and go to the store. It made for a wonderful and fulfilling sleep that night, as well.

Scott and I went out for dinner my first night back and went to a corn maze – the first for both of us. It was very fun, but like I said, I hadn’t quite warmed up at that point so we only stayed long enough for two mazes.

The following day I felt a sudden need to sort through and eliminate unneeded belongings. It’s strange how a month of living out of a backpack puts material wealth into perspective. I realized I did not need many of the items still packed away in my pile of boxed belongings in Scott’s basement. It was therefore a day of cleaning out, throwing away (recycling of course), and redistributing items into the pile, a few boxes lighter. Feels rather productive, to be honest.

Halloween at my sister’s house was fantastic, of course. The majority of those in attendance wore costumes and we found ample entertainment by creating the ultimate playlist.

Scott had to head back to work today so I mulled around, cleaning and organizing here and there, both on the computer and in the house. Since my oldest sister is still in town I spent most of the afternoon visiting at my middle sister’s house and finally returned after dinner. I need to turn my efforts toward finding a new job now, so wish me luck with that one. Trying to shift directions from service-related positions to a more professional career seems rather daunting and not without rough beginnings.