Heard this "news" on the radio while in the car this morning. Apparently Diet Pepsi has discovered women are not happy and would like to have more fun. 72% want more fun. Really? Just women?? Frankly, I think 98% of the human race would like to have more fun. My dogs want more fun. How about you increase my fun without making me enter a stupid contest or buy your product or any product for that matter.
Yes, I'm a little cranky. I didn't sleep that well last night and today is most likely going to be woefully lacking in fun and flair.
What's your guaranteed, go-to, mood-lifter song?? I have mine, but so far, they're not working. As a matter of fact, they're having the opposite effect.
I woke up this morning, feeling the need to get some endorphins going asap, but life got in the way. I now need pick-me-up, before going into the dreadful afternoon. You know I don't like those, no matter how beautiful they are... I need musical intervention... stat.
I'm guessing around 5, I'll even be willing to give Rush a try...
The purslane* is in... in a matter of a day or three, BAM! It's purslane city. It's not even bad looking. It's kind of a nice succulent ground cover, but it tends to choke things out... things that I want, like this sad little basil plant which should be HUGE by now. Of course, it's not choking out its fellow weed... some mustardy type thing.
What else is choking out the garden? Aside from the crabgrass and creeping charlie and THISTLES?!?! Amaranth... or a variety of amaranth. It's in the amaranth family. It's a weed, but is supposedly edible, as is purslane, but I'm not going to try it. It will not get the honor of gracing our table. It will get the honor of gracing our composter... which gets plenty hot, to kill any optimistic seeds.
I'm feeling surly today. One more hour of weeding and I will have found my Zen calm... my empty mind... all thoughts having been sweat out of my bod in the pursuit of one task... weeding. However, I'm not there yet...
* shown in extra big cinemascope for B^4's pleasure.
... why are all YouTube screens now black and devoid of any video possiblities?? I have uploaded all upgrades, plug-ins, etc, etc, etc. I have cleared old cookies, caches, etc, etc, etc. I can view Hulu videos, advertising videos, even advertising videos on the YouTube page, but no other videos on the site, or posted to other sites. Am I the only one having this issue?? Do I need to sacrifice a PC during a full moon in order to get video viewing rights back?? Or is this a YouTube problem. Any thoughts?
And, the first person (and the second and the third) who tell me to buy a Mac will be banned. I know. I know. Unfortunately, my home stuff has to work with Grizzled's office stuff...
I remembered last night that I had had a great idea the other day. I couldn't remember what it was, but was relieved to remember that I had written it down... not trusting my memory these days. This morning, I remembered that I had had that idea again and felt relief that although I still couldn't think of the damn thing... I had written it down on a notepad on my desk, using what was closest... a yellow Sharpie... and seem to recall tucking it in the drawer lest someone see my crazed notes again and question my mental stability.
This afternoon, I remembered again that I had that idea stashed away. I went to the drawer, ready to feel the relief of recognition, when I couldn't find it. I found other stuff I had scrawled down, but not the idea... nothing hastily written in yellow Sharpie... there was, however, a yellow Sharpie on my desk.
I've gone through the drawers, I've gone through the piles, I've look on the floor... nothing... nothing resembling the pad I thought I wrote it on. I looked around the house, by the phones, in case someone had grabbed a pad from in here, but I can't find one. I'm now starting to wonder if I ever had the idea or if I just dreamed it...
...the 5 or so minutes during your workout where you are past the novelty, but have not yet gotten to the blessed relief of breaking a good sweat, and with it, a better outlook on life.
March is like... that moment in childbirth where you're ready to have someone use power tools to remove this thing... you're sniveling and weak, but have not yet gotten to the "Fuck this! I'm getting this over with! Let's push till 20!
March is like... the trip up the stairs, just trying to make it to the bathroom, after a long ride at the end of a vacation where your father refused to stop for a pee break and you had a large lemonade just before leaving...
March is like... the yawn that just won't complete itself, thus causing you to panic, thinking you'll never, ever have a deep breath again...
March is like... ripping a Band-Aid off, although more painful and not as quick...
March is like... that itch you can't reach on your back...
March seems like an eternity. Fortunately, it's NOT!
We have approximately 10 more waste-free lunch days until I am free... YL will be leaving elementary school and we will finally be free from the militant waste-free lunch mother wardens who have turned me into an evil being... a being who once loved the Earth, but who now does spiteful stuff just because.
Waste-free lunch has been a burr under my saddle for years now. It used to be it was just one a month and anyone can handle anything for one day a month... plus it was for a good cause. We were teaching our kids how to reduce the waste that goes into landfill... (never mind that Grizzled and I do this on a daily basis. We've learned that nothing really counts unless it happens at school.) Of course, this message wasn't important enough on its own, no there had to be prizes. Kids need to get prizes for their participation. Grizzled and I often discussed the waste that went into making those Oriental Trading Co. prizes, not to mention them being waste themselves, but hey, let's not confuse things with the facts.
I think the thing that has frosted my ass the most since the inception of waste-free lunch days were the random rules, decided on the day by whichever militant mother volunteer showed up, exercising the power that she so missed in other areas of life. Waste-free lunch seemed to be one of those carnival games you never won and the child was then shamed for killing the planet.
During EL's years, I purchased a multi-compartment lunch container that took care of all items to go into her lunch. Did El get her prize? Hell no... I received a note one time that the rules were, there must be at least 2 reusable containers in the lunch. She only had one... never mind that ALL of her lunch items fit into this one ecologically sound container. She needed to bring two. I debated with them over this, but they refused to see my point and I refused to not use the container I had specifically purchased for waste-free lunch day. EL still has scars, but is not alone...
Sometime during YL's years at this school, waste-free lunch day became a weekly event. I upped my prescription for ulcer medication at this point, but continued to try and run the waste-free gauntlet set up by the new batch of mothers in charge... It seemed they had lightened up on the 2 or more container ruling so I thought I was home free... not to mention, I always use a metal spoon in her lunch. Her lunches were waste-free... until I got the notice about the cloth napkin. It seems it didn't matter now that her lunches were packed in waste-free containers and that she had a reusable spoon, I was including paper napkins, which I might add, are recycled napkins. I should have used a leaf.
But still, EL explained to me that I must continue to try as the shame of not having the perfect waste-free lunch weighs heavy on a young soul, and although she liked to bust her sister's chops, she didn't want someone else doing it. Cloth napkins it would be. I could do that. But... I also found myself rebelling in baaaad ways. Instead of buying a large container of apple sauce, I'd buy the individually wrapped ones... open one and put it into a reusable container. This gave more glee than it should have, but I am a sick individual when pushed to it... I did it with other things as well... sending in the supposedly waste-free lunch with a wicked, knowing smile. Screw the Earth I loved so much! Spite was so much BETTER!
The final straw (plastic straw!) came the other day when I was packing YL's waste-free lunch and asked her to get me the beatific cloth napkin. She said to just use a paper one, she didn't care... for one thing, they don't hand out prizes anymore, they just write "WF" on your hand with a marker. Grizzled chimed in at this point and said they forgot the T that goes in between... YL said she wouldn't even get that anyhow because she drinks milk from school... a milk contract that we purchase in the beginning of the year... milk that is ordered specifically for the number of kids with a contract. I was missing something. Why would that enter into what she brought from home?? She said the mother told her the milk did not come in a waste-free container and therefore, she did not have a waste-free lunch. We explained to her that it would be more wasteful if all kids who normally drank this milk did not on this given day. She said she understood, and just didn't care. She didn't care anymore. Hooray... they successfully killed what should have been a good thing in my kid's mind and in mine. Instead of encouraging any form of reducing waste, they made it impossible to do a good job. Did I mention, we'll only have about 10 of these left?!?! I can't wait.
In the meantime, Grizzled has been reeling off suggestions for the ultimate waste-free lunch... "How about we send her in with a live cow! That would reduce packaging and waste! The mothers can butcher it there in front of the kids and serve it for lunch! RAW!! So we don't waste energy cooking it!!!"
I believe another suggestion was sending her in without any lunch since any form of lunch involves some form of waste, including bodily waste... Can't have that... can't get WF marked on your hand if you poop.
Have I mentioned?? I'm so ready to be done with this...
A new feature will be incorporated into the Empire: Fuck You Fridays. In which I will unleash on a couple of people/items/issues/noises that are currently aggravating me, and then I encourage people to stop in and drain their own personal boils all over the comment thread. I expect it to be ugly, contentious, vicious and therapeutic, and I canNOT think of a better purpose for this stupid blog, short of posting unbearably cute pictures of cats, or Mekons videos.
While I'm all for letting it all out, I've also come to realize it's no place to stay... so I'm seeing this as a good way to purge and move on. Another good way to purge and move on??
As Rotten says:
Johnny Lydon once sang, "anger is an energy" and it does seem to work for him. So, next Friday, stop back for hate and anger and energy and spit and bile. Happy Times!!
Apparently Lydon wasn't the only one. This commentary reminded me of a letter received loooooong ago when I was still relatively green in what would be my college career. I was vacillating between majoring in science, art, and a few other majors I can't quite recall. I was doing some cartooning on the side and for some reason, felt compelled to write Edward Koren a letter, asking him for his insights. Why I did this, I have no idea. I've always felt free to write anyone, and strangely enough, most of those people usually wrote back. People were often amazed at this. I was often amazed at this. Mr. Koren was no exception. I'll never forget the day I dragged myself back to my college dorm, checking the mail before heading back upstair to the Virgin Vault. I spied a letter with horrible handwriting. Seeing what looked like a large, mishapen K, I assumed it was from my sister. Imagine my surprise when I saw that it was a letter from Mr. Koren, on wonderful New Yorker stationary. Say what you will about the New Yorker, but I was thrilled.
Inside the envelope was a lovely letter... a two-sided, handwritten letter, with thoughtful commentary, along with a few comments I didn't quite yet understand. I think at the time I was expecting a list of what to do's. Add A, mix in B, end up with C... or was hoping for that. That would be so much easier. Yes, there was some of that, but after that he added that the other object lesson he could pass on was anger- the "other" ingredient (see letter to the left.)
Yes, I still have the letter. I remember reading it and thinking, crap. I'm going to have to figure this out myself. Many, many years later, after happening upon the letter again, I reread it and it made sense.
Thank you Edward Koren.
Hey Rotten! Here's to our anger... and to us prosessing it into something beautiful... and maybe having a little fun along the way.
And as Mr. Koren so wisely stated: "With wishes for you discovering your own mistakes-"
A driving pet peeve of mine is parents who are dropping the kid off at a function/class, etc, who must wait until the kid is in the building, thus holding up the entire line of parents dropping off their kids. While I kind of understand this, I also don't understand this. I have, on occasion, waited until YL has gotten into her school when we're early enough for chorus and no one else is there. I don't feel like buzzing off in case that is the one day I messed up the schedule in my mind and the door is locked. I can understand the instinct, but when a bunch of other kids are walking in as well? I don't get it.
Tonight, while dropping off the YL at the RecPlex, at a well-lit and designated drop-off area, where a multitude of other people were being dropped off, 20 ft from the front door, one parent, at the top of the line, had to wait... had to wait until that child moved the 20 ft and then got through BOTH sets of doors... because heaven forbid some perv was waiting in the well-lit area to snag the kid... in front of 30 people who were also dropping off their perv-bait.
Of course if someone did try to snag the child, it's not like any of the adults entering the building would help. No, better stay and watch. And it's not like any of the adults dropping off their kids would help. Adults who were already anger-primed by having to wait in the line for the one person who wanted to make sure Little Johnny (who looked like an embarassed tween) made it the 20 ft to the door.
If you're that worried, park and walk your child in. Your child might be ready for drop-off, but you're obviously not. Do us all a favor, park and walk them in, that way you'll be reassured that Little Johnny not only got in, but was breathing the entire way. Better yet, irk the instructors and stay in class, just to make sure.
But no, they don't park, they just hold up the line... and then, as if no one else existed, they do a U-turn, cutting off any incoming traffic that was not in the drop-off lane because they don't want to go the full way to the proper turn-around. No, they just cut off everyone and then STOP ON THE WAY OUT!! TO LOOK IN THE DAMN DOOR! JUST IN CASE A PERV NABBED LITTLE JOHNNY WHEN HE WAS WALKING PAST THE FRONT DESK AND FRONT OFFICES WHICH ARE TEEMING WITH RESPONSIBLE PEOPLE.
And as if this weren't enough, on the way home, I was behind someone who felt the need to do 3-4 complete stops before each stop. I've been behind this person before and should have been prepared, but no, I assumed they'd stop and go. Just as you thought they were going to go and you gave your car a little gas, they rethought, best to do another complete stop... or three. While I'm usually a big fan of the complete stop and feel people don't do enough, this was overkill. One is enough. One complete stop per sign is enough. I've found that once your nose is out in the intersection, people expect you to go, especially when the path is clear.
As I said, I know this car. This person has nearly killed me and many others before with such driving. This person also has a "Choose Life" sticker on their car. It must be ironic. I'm not sure if they're going to kill someone first or if another person is going to kill them by beating them to death with the other parent who must hold up the entire line while waiting to see if their kid made it inside.