Thursday, July 22, 2004

Trading an M16 for a boob job...

Since H has decided to leave the country AGAIN, I've decided to take her up on her offer to blog here. She offered once before, but I was a bit blog-shy from a lesson learned from posting over at Chuck's place (Metaphors of a Magnifico - I don't know how to link stuff yet). At any rate, I'm not nearly as witty as H, but someone's gotta pick up her slack while she's off working missionary miracles and getting some parasitic disease in South America.

This news article caught my eye this afternoon: Apparently, members of all four branches of the military can now get breast enlargements, facelifts, nosejobs, and liposuction - all at the taxpayers expense - so that plastic surgeons can hone their skills. According to the article, anyone wearing a uniform is eligible. An army spokeswoman actually said, "The surgeons have to have someone to practice on."

The surgeons have to have someone to practice on?!? Nice - send the kids over to the middle east to fight whatever it is we're fighting over there, and if they're feeling fat and ugly when they come back, let them offer themselves up to some narcisistic plastic surgeon so he can practice his boob jobs until he's good enough to make it on the next season of "Dr. 90210."

Is it me, or does this seem a little twisted?

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Hasta Luego

Ok, so I didn't give you much advance notice, but I leave in 4 hours (as in 3:30 a.m.) for Honduras and will not return until Aug 2.  And unlike China, I will have absolutely no access to email/phones/internet the entire time.  So don't expect posts from me.  However, a few lovely friends (K, Chuck and Amanda) have blogging privileges that I hope they utilize.  Otherwise there will be dust bunnies rolling through here by the time I return. 

But I should probably get a bit of sleep.  Initially, only going on this trip were people in their mid-50s, 1 girl a couple years younger than me who was married, and me.  Always the sole single person on a church function.  Things changed though. 2 people had to drop out and one of my friends is going now.  (My BBall date for those who remember him.)  So hopefully we'll be able to keep each other sane.  Though it may already be too late considering I agreed to carry the expensive medical devices in my carry on.  I have a feeling I'm going to have a bit of trouble explaining to the security officers why I need both a fetal heart monitor and some sort of ultrasound machine.  Not your typcial travel items.

Eerie Email

I got a message from an auto-response saying that this person I supposedly emailed was out of the country but would return my email when she returned.  It had the included message and it said it was from my email addy to hers, and then listed the subject matter.  But I have no idea who this person is, nor have I ever emailed her. 

So if anyone else is getting random emails from me, let me know.  The only thing I could think of is if I commented on a blog somewhere and the person has their comments set to notify them through email.  But I still don't recognize the subject line. 

Then again, it could just be a virus and hopefully it's infected my laptop giving me ample reason to quit the thing.  But that's only wishful thinking.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004


This morning on the news, they showed the funniest political cartoon video I've ever seen.  Some people have probably seen it and recommended it on their blogs, but until I see it with my own eyes, I tend to ignore those things.
It's located here: 
It takes a while to load but trust me, it's well worth it. 

Monday, July 19, 2004


Well, the laptop has finally bit the dust.  Though it's not completely lifeless yet, it will be as soon as I finish this post and throw it out the window. 
I've had problems with it since I bought it, including the short in the wiring which causes the screen to go out.  It's been fixed once, and now it's worse than ever.  The screen only works when it's open an inch.  For those who are laptopless, you can't really do much with a computer that only opens an inch.  My hands are thicker than an inch.   After a while, the screen will start to work at wider angles, but the colors are off.  It's replaced black with neon green and then there's random pink lines all over it.  Really colorful, but non-functional.
So I'm in the market for a new computer.  Because although I could fix the piece of crap, it's not worth it to me.  My dad, ultra conservative, "live with it till it's really broke" man has already told me to scrap this old one and buy something dependable.  I may clean the hard drive and then try to hawk it on ebay.  And if I get 50 bucks for it, I'll be happy.
Though my knowledge of computers is at most minimal, I offer this one piece of advice to anyone ever in the market for a computer:  Avoid HPs like the plague because they are pieces of crap.  I have a few friends who also have HPs and all of them have had trouble.  Like they say, when 1 person says it, it's rumor, but when 2 or more confirm it, it's fact. 

Friday, July 16, 2004

Makes ya wonder.

While the brother-in-law is here for dinner, he turns the TV to a local station, and all the sudden he's on the news.  Apparently he was fighting a fire this afternoon, and the film crew came to film him.  It was a log cabin of all things so you can imagine how much of that survived. They show him holding the hose and spraying the place down, and of course he's not wearing his helmet or his jacket.  This is the same brother-in-law who told K that he doesn't wear a shield when he welds (sp?) because he just puts it on the starting point, and then turns his head and starts going.   Gotta wonder about him sometimes.
But while we're watching TV, his radio goes off and dispatch starts talking about an accident in another township.   Someone was out mowing their lawn and it resulted in some sort of amputation.  They didn't give details or say what was amputated, but it still makes me cringe.  The worst part about it was that it was 9:30 p.m.  Who in the world is mowing their lawn at 9:30 at night?

Too close to home.

For about a year, my brother in law has been trying to get me to watch the Blue Collar Comedy Tour.  Which it wasn't that I was resisting, he always just asked when I was doing something.  They were over tonight for dinner and he asked what I was doing for the rest of the night, and then ran home to get the DVD and brought it back.  So the mom and I watched it with he, my sis, and my aunt and cousins.
Now, I will say that it is definitely funny.  But what's most amusing to me is that it's not any different than attending one of my family get togethers.  In fact, I'm not entirely convinced that I'm not related to those comedians.  Half of their stories and jokes could have been pulled from spending one day with my other cousins.  And the redneck things ring quite close to home.  There were a few even that I lived through.  (For those who have seen it, my parents did keep a flyswatter on the dash when they drove so that they could reach us in the back seat.)
But I will recommend it for anyone who enjoys comedy like that.  And if you're too embarrassed to admit watching it, just rent it and watch it on your own.  Or check out the Comedy Central schedule and figure out a time when you can turn the TV down low so no one can hear you.  And then just picture me at a family function.  I'm the one in the back rolling my eyes.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Body Art

When I got my first tattoo, I was warned that it wouldn't be my last.  Everyone claimed that they were addicting, and I pretty much pshawed the idea.  But they were right.
I've had this hankering to get another tattoo for about the last 18 months.  I'm coming up on the 3rd anniversary of my original tattoo, and I'm just getting the bug again.  It's like catching the "I want to go on vacation fever", but only not as frequent.
I have no regrets about my first tattoo.  I went through all the stages including the "oh my god what was I thinking" stage merely a day after I got it.  But now I barely notice it's there.  And it meant something to me when I got it.
My parents have always had this rule that we couldn't get a tattoo as long as we were living under their roof.  I waited until I had lived on my own for a year or two, as did my sister, and then we defaced our ankles.  Now technically, I'm back under my parents' roof, but I'm thinking the rule shouldn't still apply.  Because as the guy that did my tattoo said, "There are 2 kinds of people in the world:  those who have tattoos and those who don't."  Which at the time I told him not to classify me the same as the dude in the next chair over who was getting his last tattoo because to find any more room they were going to have to start opening him up and tattooing his organs.
But the dilemma I have is that I know where I want to get my next one, but I have no idea what I want.  I contemplated my first one for about 5 years, and then fell in love with the tattoo my friend had.  I asked her permission first, and then got one just like it, which was justified in my mind because she lives on a different continent and it's not like anyone ever sees us together.   Now I"m again clueless as to what I want.  Those of you who know me may want to suggest something (though I don't do anything cutesy or trendy).  I'll be keeping my eyes open for your wisdom.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Spinnin' Round

Yesterday I came the closest to being in the middle of a tornado that I ever want to be in my life. Now, a few years ago, I was sitting at my desk at work when Indiana's earthquake rumbled through. But it doesn't even compare in natural disasters.

I'm on the interstate yesterday, and the storm going through is the worst storm I've ever seen. It got to the point that I couldn't see anything around me and traffic was at an absolute standstill. Rain and hail were blowing at 90 degree angles across my car, and the wind was blowing my car out of it's lane. A semi was parked in front of me, so I pulled up next to him so that my car didn't get blown away. And then I called my dad.

I wanted to know what to do, because I wasn't sure if I should stay next to the semi, which I was certain was going to fall over on me anytime, but still thought it was a better idea than being blown into oncoming traffic. Cause my little plastic Saturn can't withstand 70-80 mph winds. So the dad suggested that I stay where I was with the semi blocking the wind, and I sat for another 5 min. I still couldn't see anything except the semi next to me and the 4 foot tall construction barriers flying by my car.

And then the worst sound possible. The Emergency Alert System goes off and says "There is a tornado warning for Southern H County (right where I was). Funnel clouds have been spotted and are expected to touch down in minutes. If you are in a vehicle, evacuate it immediately and seek cover in the lowest area you can find."

At which point I start panicking. The abandoning your vehicle is the dumbest advice I ever heard since I was on a stretch of the interstate abutted by soy bean fields on either side and it was quite possibly the flattest stretch of roadway in Indiana. So instead, I sit there having no clue what is happening and expecting to be living a scene from Twister any time soon.

But after about 10 minutes, the worst of it passed. And I survived. Though, honest to God, that was the scariest moment of my life. I was still shaking when I got home over an hour later.

Monday, July 12, 2004

Baby Shower Aftermath

So the baby shower on Saturday was the biggest baby shower I've ever been to in all my life. And trust me, I've been to my fair share. My sister's mother-in-law invited over 80 people to the shower, and about 50 showed up and the rest sent presents. They were all people who knew her husband from when he was born, and consequently, never saw him after he turned 15. My sister knew only about 5 of them and sat at the head table in a 'deer in the headlights' trance for most of it while I tried to entertain her with the humor no one else seemed to get.

But the good news is that I'm cancelling all other baby showers since the guests exhausted both registries in no time flat. She may have 1 item left on either list, and if I can convince my aunts to buy that, I'm pulling rank (as official gift writer downer) and calling it quits. Somehow, I don't think that will fly with our side of the family.

And why do people feel that the "poopy diaper game" needs to be played at every shower? For those not in the know, the poopy diaper game is where someone melts a variety of candy bars and then puts them into a diaper so the guests can see how many different kinds they can name. Anyone who thinks making chocolate look like baby poop is a good idea needs their head checked.

No secrets.

Until a few months ago, the most dreaded question I faced from people (usually family members) was "So are you seeing anyone?" While I still abhor that question, one that is equally annoying is "How was China?" People I haven't spoken to since I was 4 have to ask since the parentals know everyone in town and therefore everyone in town knows I was gone.

On the 4th we had a little family get together, which I felt obligated to go to since I missed 2 family get togethers in the 5 weeks I was gone. (I told you my family was close.) But I told my mom I was going to go late so that everyone would have spread out around the house and I wouldn't have to encounter them all at once. Things went somewhat as planned except that the first thing I heard when I walked in was "I won't ask, you're mom's already told me you don't want to talk about it."

Can't trust those parents with anything.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Weekend Woes

Tomorrow I get to drive 3 hours to middle of nowhere Illinois to my sister's inlaws for a day of fun and then drive the 3 hours back. Why will it be so fun? Because it's the first of many baby showers I'm obligated to attend because of the sole reason that I'm related to the mother-to-be. And we all know just how much I love baby showers. I know of at least 3 others for my sister in coming months. And I'm sure I'll love each and every second of them.

The sis and bro-in-law stopped by earlier to take the seat out of the van so that we have more room. I volunteered to stay home if they needed the space for presents. But I got the evil eye from the sis and was told that if she had to suffer through it, so did I. Which I don't understand since I wasn't the one who got married and then knocked up.

One of those weeks.

I haven't posted recently because I've been in sort of a funk. Getting all philosophical on myself and going down the "Why?" road. So I've spared you all that trouble.

So far today I've mowed the lawn and sprained my ankle while doing so. It's a long story involving mowing sideways on our hill and stepping on a mole hole. And the sad thing is that that will probably be the highlight of my weekend. But more on that later.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Mullets, Tube Tops, and Teenage Moms... Oh my!

After talking about how much I loved being here for the 4th, I suddenly realized how much I didn't. I put off heading down to the park until about 7 tonight, and then once I got there I spent a good 2 hours trying to spot an outfit/look that would top one my sister had just pointed out. My favorite current look is the cutoff shirt that shows half of the stomach, and then the too tight jean shorts/jeans that push all of their skin/fat upwards showing why they need not be wearing a cutoff shirt. We saw a few people with knee high leather boots on and a guy wearing cowboy boots and hat and boxer shorts. And of course there was the slew of jr. high girls who looked like they were headed to either a frat party or a brothel after the fireworks concluded. Which is probably the reason behind my next point.

Everyone over the age of 14 in the Jesus Town is pregnant. Though this is not surprising seeing as it's the same town that was ranked #1 in the nation for teen pregnancies when I was in high school. (I consider having had 37 of 115 girls in my graduating class who were pregnant at some point before graduation to be a mark worth noting.)

All in all, it's always a good experience to go and see that I should be thankful for what I have, or don't have as the case may be. A few different choices and I could have been the lady dragging her 8 year old through the midway or the 20 year old screaming at her husband at the top of her lungs. As it is, I'll be satisfied being the girl across the way pointing her finger and laughing.

Friday, July 02, 2004

I'd like a salad but hold the toad please.

A Massachusetts woman claims that she found a toad in her salad at her local McDonalds. If this proves to be a stunt, unfortunately the woman will not be the pioneer in the "amphibian in my food" trick.

A few years back, a couple in my home town made national news when they claimed that they found a frog in their Taco Bell taco. The frenzy and worry shut the local Taco Bell down for months until it was shown that the frog was placed there by the couple. The couple was found guilty of false reporting and given probation, which I considered to be a light sentence given their history. They once sued a friend of mine after their daughter was "hit by his car" in the high school parking lot. Only she had walked in front of the car that wasn't even running but was being pushed towards the automotive wing bay for work and then claimed she had a broken leg. How anyone could sustain a broken leg from a car travelling 2 mph, I'll never know. But unfortunately, these are the type of people that some of my classmates will be representing in the future.

Small Town Life

This week, the fiasco better known as the "74th Annual Jesus Town Rotary 4th of July Celebration" has rolled into town. If any of you still had doubts that I live in a small town, this event would put them to rest.

I hate to say it, but this week is one of my favorite times of the year. The whole shebang moves into town and takes over the park for the duration of about 8 days. It's the only event of it's caliber for about 2-300 miles and attracts all of the small town folks in the tri-state area. The celebration includes things such as a carnival and local organizations hawking a variety of foods at booths crammed together along the midway. In my short 26 years I have sold everything from baked potatotes to sundaes to lemonade to pork sandwiches. I'm still partial to the sugar-shock inducing lemonade that my church is famous for.

When I was a child I used to work on my grandparents' farm for an entire week pulling weeds for 6 hours a day and as a reward he would buy us an "all you can ride" ticket for the 4th. I used to look forward to that day every year. It was only in hindsight that I realized that the ticket at the time cost about $5 and I had worked approximately 36 hours for that $5 bucks. [I actually remember when I was 7 and we had learned about the end of the world at church and I used to have nightmares that it would come some time between the actual work and payoff. And then I felt so guilty that I was so selfish about the world ending that I was certain I'd fall to my death off the flying swings.]

But there is also featured entertainment at the bandshell nightly. During its highs it has included performances by Jesus Town native Henry Lee Summer [whose debut for his video "Wish I had a Girl Who Walked Like That" marks the only time my parents have ever encouraged me to watch MTV] and during its lows features random Jesus Town family X who learned clogging last summer when visiting their Dutch grandmother in Detroit.

On the actual 4th, the town tradition is to head down to the park and mosey around all day. These are the times when I'm thankful that we have a pork-sandwich selling booth to retreat to instead of, heaven forbid, wandering around aimlessly. But other folks will take their lawn chairs and setup camp around one stretch of the sidewalk and wait for long lost friends and family members to walk by. Sometimes I'll sit with my grandfather for short periods and realize just how many people my family knows.

The whole week is capped off by a stellar fireworks display and the raffle that gives away a truck and $10,000 as top prize. Granted, I've never been lucky enough to win either. But there's always this year.

It's things like these that make me nostalgic and make me realize that there are some things I will miss about small town life.

Thursday, July 01, 2004


A few people claimed that they emailed me while I was gone, but I was highly skeptical since I never received an email from them. But then I noticed that I hadn't received an email from my mother during the last 2 weeks there. Highly unusual. When they picked me up at the airport my mother said that she had emailed me a half a dozen times in the last week. Well, yesterday I received a new email from my mom. Only she had written it 10 days ago. It was telling me all about father's day and such. So I'm expecting more emails to appear in the next few days. If you emailed me at some point in the last couple of weeks and were expecting a response, be patient, it still may come. I make no promises though because I may choose to ignore you even if I get it. I do reserve the right to be obstinate.


In an effort not to repeat my 6:30 p.m. bedtime and 2:00 a.m. wakeup of last night, I've engaged in a variety of activities to keep myself awake tonight. My parents are out of town until tomorrow night, and my brother is working all the time so there's no one here to entertain me. Instead I've spent a night pampering myself and watching quality television programming. (I say this because I promised K that after China I would never ever again complain about there being nothing on TV.)

I'm trying to decide which is worse. (1) That I'm actually watching The Karate Kid or (2) that it's playing on the American Movie Classics channel. I have previously been entertaining myself with my new Season 1 of [TV show name removed to protect my obsessions] dvd set, but have found that 3 episodes a day (played during rain delays of Wimbledon of course) is about my tops. And I'm saving the special features for a rainy day.

On the upside, I've had a self-given pedicure, hair treatment, and facial this evening. My skin has never thanked me more. Though I'm pretty sure I sweated out all of my toxins in Beijing.

Slight Obsession

So, it's a good thing we came home a few days early so that I could glue myself to the TV for Wimbledon coverage. Seriously, I think I've got some sort of sickness. I know exactly when NBC is covering and when ESPN is picking up the slack. I've even gone so far as to tape a match or 2 and refrain from the internet so as not to spoil myself. And I'm trying my best not to mention that I was there last year every time someone walks into the room.

I'm a little disappointed that the RCA Championships in Indy take place while I'm in Honduras, though I think I can catch the first couple of days if I'm lucky. I missed it last year and have anticipated the last 12 months. Let's hope it doesn't rain those few days or I'll be a bit grouchy.

No nice way to wrap up this post as I'm distracted by the Davenport/Sharapova match currently being shown on a delay.