Wednesday, April 28, 2010

1. Lick the Pig 2. Squee

Rinse. Repeat.

How a Knitter Thinks

"I could make that."

IRO Seger Sweater {via Polyvore}

I wonder how it would look in hot pink merino/cashmere...?

And I wonder how you knit those big-hole trilobites...?

I love a good research project.

Monday, April 26, 2010

What I Did on My Easter Vacation

My first few hours in San Antonio looked like this.

There was apparently an accident on the *mgvflrgl* Loop that had the left lane closed. Or two lanes, if you believe the big red X's over the two left lanes on the *mgvflrgl* Loop, which I did, so I crept along in the second-from-right lane until I'd passed that point on the *mgvflrgl* Loop that was supposed to contain the accident.

I believe the Texas DOT and the local radio stations like to play pranks on unwitting tourists.

Anyway, things got better.

For instance, I passed this church...

...which apparently meets in a storage unit. Or possibly a decorative rock sales yard.

Once I got to Wimberley, I checked my email to see if there were further instructions on the evening's activities.

"Meet us at Ike's!" the instructions cheerfully instructed. "We should be there around 9:00! Or possibly 10:00! Or maybe 8:30!"

As it was about 6:00 and my last meal was the latte I had at Caribou Coffee in the A Terminal of DIA, I decided to find something to eat.

The nice woman who runs the Mountain View Lodge suggested Juan Henry's.

Since I'd seen Juan Henry's in my Google search of "best restaurants wimberley texas," it seemed like a good bet.

"Also, there's Juan Enrique's. I read about them too," I said in my head. "I bet they're related. That's kinda clever. Probably owned by the same family or something."

I drove past Juan Enrique's on my way to Juan Henry's. Five miles into the trip, when the road had narrowed to one lane and the pavement was spotty at best, I decided to start over.

After making the whole loop again, I decided Juan Enrique's was just going to have to do and I pulled in.

Just inside the door? A sign that said, "Welcome to Juan Henry's."

When I ordered a margarita, the waitress said, "You're a club member, right?"

"Um, nooooo..." worried that it might be a country club or something... or like those places in Utah where you have to pay a membership fee and bring your own bottle.

"Oops. Well, I just made you a member. I'll bring the application right out."

So I filled out the application and am now a proud Juan Henry's Club member. And I have the card to prove it.

I arrived at Ike's about 9:00, worried that I was going to be way early.

Minutes later, I got a text saying, "Forget Ike's - come to the cabins and bring booze!"

We stayed up very late drinking and talking. The next day was the wedding day, so I opted to tourist around a bit.

The reason I picked the Mountain View Lodge out of the host of options available to me was that it had a walking trail that boasted a genuine allosaurus track. Like I'm going to pass that up.

I flipped through the plastic-bound trail guide in my room, but all it had was names of flowers - no pictures. So I deemed it too bulky to mess with and struck out on the trail.

First, there was yucca.

Then I went downhill for a bit...

...then uphill.

Then uphill again.

In my heart of hearts, I will always be sure I went uphill way more than I went downhill, despite ending in the same place I began.

But there were flowers along the way.

Star flowers...

...bell flowers... flowers...

...Indian paintbrush.§

There were dangerous yucca obstacle courses...

...but I made it.

Without ever seeing the dinosaur track. Turns out I should've taken the bulky trail guide with me.

I decided to head to the center of Wimberley to find postcards for the nephews and grab some lunch.

And take pictures of the bluebonnets. Because that's what you do in April in Texas.

So, funny story: I was unpacking my suitcase when I got there Friday and realised that I'd brought both pantyhose and thong sandles. I deliberately did not bring a razor.

I'd shaved my legs Thursday morning, which would be fine with the nylon illusion of smoothness pantyhose offers, but was completely unacceptable for complete bareleggedness and two days' stubble. In my travels Friday night, I stopped to get some Nair.

I took a little nap Saturday afternoon, carefully calculating just how much time I'd need to get to the wedding in a time and fashion that wouldn't cause the bride a stroke. When the alarm went off, I shuffled into the bathroom, stripped and began applying Nair to my legs.

After the requisite time to dissolve hair, I turned on the water to warm it up. I pulled the shower starter and found the shower head pointed straight to the back wall. I reached up, tilted it down and... it broke off in my hand.

I turned off the water to quell the deluge and sat on the edge of the tub to assess my situation.

I was naked and covered in sulphurous Nair now clotted with dissolved hair bits. I was running the ragged edge of acceptable timing to get ready. Even if I could find a way to get decent and get to the motel office, I wasn't going to have time to switch rooms or have the shower head repaired.

So I performed all ablutions in contortion under the bathtub faucet, occasionally hopping out to let the globs of Nair/hair go down the drain.

I was sticky.

The wedding, however, was lovely enough that it couldn't be tainted even by my slightly over-conditioned hair and strong soap smell.

The altar

The tables and centerpieces

The traditional nuptial salt lick

The traditional raising of the ladder by underaged groomsmen

Dave and Kara's son Jasper
# in a rare still moment

I don't know this kid or his parents, he just made the picture better

See? Picture without some random kid - not as compelling

Assorted groomsmen at the ready

Kids are doubly cute when they have a job to take seriously

Maisy (Dave and Kara's daughter) is case in point

Some free spirits can use a little guidance

You don't have to be a kid to look cute on the job. This is Jenny, Dave's and Lisa's sister, Matron of Honour

Lisa, the bride

Maisy ate nine or twelve clementines before the dinner was even set up

Ruben (Jenny and Jeremy's son) seemed suspicious of the salt lick.

Kara found the coolest thing for Lisa for a wedding gift.

If I ever get married, you know what to do.

The cake topper was pretty cool.

And I can't stress the joy of lighted things enough. If you have an outdoor night wedding, please consider a wide assortment of things that can light up.††

Sunday, I returned to San Antonio with the intention of having a nice lunch on the Riverwalk and finding postcards to send to the nephews, but was mostly thwarted by the NCAA Women's Final Four.

They had a floating pep rally. Cheerleaders and marching bands on rafts. Awesome.

Too many people forced me to abandon the Riverwalk in disgust, so I had lunch at the airport.

That was my trip to San Antonio. Three weeks ago.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): That would be the windshield of a Ford Focus. I may be spoiled by the trademarked whiptastic handling of the Mini Cooper, but my honest assessment is that a Ford Focus handles like a shopping cart with a sticky wheel.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Though I don't for the life of me know what privileges or responsibilities that bestows on me.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): The only flower I know the actual name of.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Dozens of adults looked on, never doing more than say, "I wonder what they're doing." Fortunately, they couldn't figure out how to lock the extension, so it wasn't long enough for whatever they were planning on using it for.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): A quick lesson on why I was in San Antonio: Dave and I have been friends since freshman year in high school. Lisa and Jenny are his sisters, whom I've known since Lisa was 13 or so and Jenny was 9 or 10. Kara is Dave's wife, Jeremy is Jenny's husband. Kara and Dave have two kids, Jasper and Maisy. Jenny and Jeremy have one son, Ruben. Or possibly Reuben. And we were all gathered to see Lisa marry Edmundo, despite the fact it looks like I was there to take pictures of plants and make fun of churches.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Particularly if you're going to have stoned people at your event, because it's something stoned people and straight people can both enjoy equally.

I'm Running Behind as Fast as I Can

So while I try to finish the blogpost I started two weeks ago, please entertain yourselves by playing your own blogs on the Code Organ.§

Brought to you by today's Very Short List. If you don't do VSL, you might consider giving it a shot. Then you, too, could get cool shit like this every day.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): OK, maybe three.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Or those of friends, family, cable channels, government entities...

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): ...speaking of government entities, I believe I'll go play the IRS website. Tax Code Code Organ - it's meta and makes me feel wildly clever.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Crappity Crap Crapple Crapstick

Sunday morning.

8:00 am.


No, no, no... wait. Let's get some background here:

Four weeks ago, I had a notice on my door, along with a release, so someone could fix my deck railings,§ which look like a ramshackle country sheep fence.

"You'll have to be there for the first four hours so they can do some tests for leakage in the garage and house."

"Do your crews work weekends? I'd rather not missing any work if I can help it."

"No. NO weekends. NEVER. Idiot! Why would you even ask such a thing? Barbarian! Fascist!"#

So we agreed on Monday the 12th.††

You know where this is going.

In a spectacular, bruising, bloodying, life-sized game of Patio Furniture Tetris, I loaded out the deck and rendered my dining room useless for the next several days.

I'm pretty sure Manny and the Snow Removers do decks in the warmer months.

And I did more before 9:00 am than I had ever intended to do all day.‡‡

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Preceded by many, many backup signals. I hate backup signals.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Which I mention because I'd like to bitch about it as long as I'm bitching. Y'know, as an efficiency measure. I rewrote the release because it essentially said, "You agree to let our people in your house, now and forever, for the purpose of fixing, inspecting, maintaining bits of the house with no date or time restrictions and you agree to hold them harmless for any and all breakage or damage." I have finally discovered the practical application of being a Landman.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): It was supposed to be fixed before I moved in. Then, after three years of asking, they let me know they weren't going to fix anything because the HOA was suing the builder for such things as wildly substandard deck rails and they didn't want to pay for anything the builders should pay for. Fortunately (since the giant set of patio furniture wasn't enough, then the planters weren't enough), the compost barrel was finally enough to trigger Murphy's Law so I could move the maximum amount of ungainly stuff into the house.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Great for a quaint rural sheep farm. Not so great for an urban townhouse.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): OK, her mouth may have said, "Oh, no, I'm sorry, we don't work weekends," but I'm sure her eyes said "Fascist!"

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): i.e. - tomorrow, but most notably not today.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Hopefully getting out of Kim's doghouse in the beginning of a misery-loves-company trend.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Double Crap!

The comments are often interesting. Sometimes, they're downright hilarious. Today, they were humbling, as Kari reminded me of a little oversight on my part.

I was so busy talking about myself and saying things to make Kim hate me that I completely forgot to tell y'all that Hans got a job too.§ Same place. We'll probably still have adjoining offices.



Back on the high road.#

FOOTNOTE (crossed): *cough*

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Dear Kim, I've said it before:

"Look at me," said the star, "I'm shining so brightly." Then it went supernova. The moral of this story is obvious. - Tanith Lee, The Silver Metal Lover

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): And he doesn't even have to be one of my minions.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): There is some chance I will have to move to the other side of our floor, given my two extant minions office there and it's where the empty offices where the two TBD minions will likely live.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Where a saint-in-training belongs.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


One of my future co-workers asked today, "So since you're going to be an employee, does this mean you can't wear jeans every day?"

I hate the voice of reason.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Y'know... all formal-like in another week-and-a-half. I've been working with her for three years.

But Enough About Me

I love otters.

Otters are my favourite non-domestic animal.

[SUMMARY: Still about me.]

From today's 5280 Panorama email:

Search for Fugitive Zoo Otter Enters Second Week

Kitchi, the otter who masterminded a successful escape from his Cheyenne Mountain Zoo§ enclosure on March 25, is still on the loose, despite three other accomplice otters being quickly rounded up nearly two weeks ago. But officials are finally reporting progress in their extensive dragnet of Colorado Springs, reporting that they've found otter tracks in the mud beneath an overpass. And although the tracks may be several days old, zoo officials say they feel confident they're on the trail of the elusive Kitchi, writes the Gazette . Kitchi's distinctive prints were discovered in a culvert beneath Westmeadow Drive, behind the Cheyenne Meadows King Soopers, says zoo tracker Nichole Mantz: "This was our first stop [Wednesday], so it was a little surprising." Otters like Kitchi aren't native to Colorado, making Mantz sure the tracks are Kitchi's. The zoo has deployed a team of trackers who hope to snare the otter, along with a van loaded with capture gear. If you know something, call the 24-hour otter hotline at 719-648-7348.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And you know if they domesticated otters, I'd be the first in line to have one.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Otter mastermind is just brilliant.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Which, for those of you who were in the Denver area in 1980, is where Albert the Alligator was imprisoned after his escape and coincident 28-day summer romp in City Park. For those of you not in the Denver area in 1980, many ducks were eaten out of the lake at City Park.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Anything is better and funnier if you use "otter" as an adjective: otter mastermind, otter hotline, otter squad, otter paws.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Holy Cats

From: "Christina"
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 1:02:14 PM GMT -07:00 US/Canada Mountain
Subject: Congrats Slingbox Winner!

Hi there!

Congratulations! Your bracket was picked by 850 KOA to win a SlingBox for the 2010 March Madness promotion!

You need to pick up your prize at our station. We are located at 4695 S Monaco St, Denver CO 80237. The prize window is open from 10:00am until 5:30pm Monday through Friday. You have until 5/10/10 to pick up your SlingBox from us.

If you have any questions, please let me know.


Clear Channel Colorado
AM Promotions Assistant

Procedural Question

Took lovely vacation.
  1. Took fantastic new job.
  2. Won tourney pool.§
  3. Came home last night to find new Nintendo cooking game% on the front porch... along with a new chef's apron, onion goggles,# a Cuisinart†† stainless steel stockpot and a truly beautiful, big bamboo chopping board.
  4. Went to happy hour with Kelley. One bottle of wine, one beer, one order of chips and salsa: $16.25. God bless half-price bottles of wine.‡‡
The question is, do I buy the lottery ticket because I'm on a roll, or have I used up more than my fair share of luck?§§

FOOTNOTE (crossed): With glow sticks!

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Yes, I did. The company that's been my client for the last three years offered me a full-time, permanent position. After carefully weighing the pay (a little less than contractor pay, but that's expected. I'll have to watch my pennies for most of the year, I'm guessing, until I get used to not having free rein of my gross pay), the benefits (401K AND pension, raises AND bonuses, med/dent/vision for $1 a month, garage parking for $25 a month, four weeks paid vacation a year, 10 holidays and one floating holiday a year - for those of you scoring at home, that means I get a full month of and paid per year. Well, for the next four years until I get FIVE weeks vacation a year. Discount stock plan and LTIP [long term incentive program, and when I figure out the LTIP thing, maybe I can explain it to someone else], which means more cash prizes.), the location (same place, five miles from home) and the position (they created it for me, keeping in mind my short attention span, and I will have MINIONS. FOUR MINIONS), I decided that at my age and stage, I couldn't pass it up.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Cash, yes, but bragging rights more important.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): America's Test Kitchen...

to go along with my last two Nintendo-supplied games, which we never talked about.

Professor Layton: wonderful puzzle game (I like puzzles).

Style Savvy: like electronic Barbies.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Red.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I'm very sensitive to onions. I hope the goggles work.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Cuisinart!

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Every happy hour at El Camino, which sounds divey and suspect, but it's actually a really nice neighbourhood bar in what is considered a pretty nice neighbourhood. Despite the name and the discount wine.

§§FOOTNOTE (head... spinning...): I'd hate to be the victim of the first exploding lottery ticket or something, which is where I fear this is headed, given the Kharmic Green Stamps I've cashed in over the last few days.

#NintendoEnthused - plus there's a new hashtag that's supposed to say I've been compensated by Nintendo, but you already knew that and I don't remember what that hashtag looks like. Y'all know Nintendo ships me stuff and I talk about it. I hope you also know that if it sucked, I'd tell you so.

It totally does not suck.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Duke Wins, BOB is King

OK, so in this scenario, the king would have to die of a mysterious stomach ailment and the crown prince would have an "unfortunate accident" so I could be king, but still... I'm aghast. I've never done nearly this well in March Madness.

In other news...

...I flat out won the Coral Room pool. That's cash in my pocket and bragging rights for... if I have my way, the rest of my bar-going life.

So this is what it feels like to be a princess.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Here Now, the News

Quite possibly not the news you would expect, given my latest post and assorted Twitterpation, but some news.

I have just returned from San Antonio and the wedding of LisaB and Edmundo.% Pictures to follow shortly, but for now, three things:
  1. If you have a wedding§ outside at night, hundreds of glow sticks and their flashier cousins@ are utterly cool.
  2. Jen, Kara and I should totally form a girl group. Our rendition of "Tainted Love" was ten kinds of awesome.
  3. If you are going to San Antonio, think twice about going during Final Four# weekend. The floating pep rally†† was fantastic, but the ballers, cheerleaders, bands, coaching staffs and all their dearest friends, family and schoolmates‡‡ were overwhelming.

[SUMMARY: There is no summary. These things don't go together except in my head.]

Speaking of...

Sports naysayers, avert your eyes:

Due to my beloved Coach K's victory over the WVa team that propelled me to giddy heights of March Madness bracket standings, I have catapulted once again, now ranking a stunning THIRTEEN§§ out of 1124 in the 850 KOA brackets.

All hale the mighty BOB!¶¶

[SUMMARY: Once again, yay me.]

By the way... one of the perqs under this job offer is a full four weeks' paid vacation my first year, plus the eleven paid holidays everybody gets.

The executives making the offer pointed out that I would've had Friday off and paid if I were working for them right now.

[SUMMARY: Some fairy godmothers just don't play fair.]

FOOTNOTE (crossed): You know how sometimes I think I'm funny? Well, sometimes I think I'm clever too.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): Which are actually two separate things, as Lisa got married in Wimberley, home of one of the first (when I was eight - not this weekend) of my many near-drownings... a little story I'll probably include when I share the pictures and the shower story. Huh. Water and Wimberley and Marin are a scary combination.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): And a funny story concerning a shower.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Or a birthday... or a free Tuesday night...

@FOOTNOTE (atted): Like this.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): There may have been alcohol involved.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Women's. I flew down with no fewer than twelve NCAA women's coaches. I seriously thought there might be some sort of lesbian festival in San Antonio this weekend before I found out I was going to Tournament Town.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Until you've seen cheerleaders form a pyramid on a barge, you haven't really lived.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Not to mention - because the sentence was getting too long, so I didn't - ESPN, CNN, travelling teams from the local news stations pertinent to Stanford, UConn and whomever else was in the women's Final Four.

§§FOOTNOTE (I'm all twirly): I had to write it out because there's no way to capitalise "13."

¶¶FOOTNOTE (beating a dead horse like a drum): Beasts of Burden. B.O.B. My perennial fantasy sports team name... in case I haven't already explained that.