House of Zathras

Zathras understand. .. No. Zathras not understand, but Zathras do. Zathras good at doings, not understandings.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Lookee, lookee!

I've got a new place!!! =HC=/Bitterroot has been patient and more than patient in setting up the new place. I still have a few bugs to work out with the new home, but it's livable. I wasn't sure I was ready for a new place, but Google drove me to it. Blogger is being completely taken over by Google. And I wasn't going there. I've been thoroughly disgusted by Google since last Christmas. Last year, people were very shocked by what happened when you googled 'baby Jesus'. I won't go into specifics over the #1 result...just that it was obscene. And there is NO WAY that it was the #1 hit for 'baby Jesus'. Someone somewhere had set up a program that made it the #1 hit...and Google refused to remove it, saying it was truly the top result. That pissed me off, and that's when I asked =HC= to find us a new search engine. We now use Dogpile. Dogpile also has the added benefit of putting up a patriotic banner on Memorial Day, Armed Forces Day, Veteran's Day, etc. Google won't. So, I try very hard to have very little to do with Google. Yes, I know Dogpile uses Google as part of their search engine, but it's not the only one. I'm very happy with Dogpile. And I won't be moving to the new Google Blogger. I'll leave this one up for awhile, in case anything happens to my new spot on the Net. But please go check out my new place. You go. You go now!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Over the river...

...and through the woods, over another river, and through some more woods, and over a few more creeks, and through some more backwoods... and finally Dawn from Overactive Imagination arrived at Mama Bear's home. What a sweetie! She brought Pumpkin Cream Cheese Cake (Mama Bear still wants the recipe!), and gingerbread people, and chocolates, and cookies...I guess just in case she got lost and needed some sustenance. But she made it fine, so we were able to have the goodies! Dawn also brought her beautiful daughter, which left Goob so tongue-tied that he couldn't say more than two coherent words all night. And her daughter had wonderful manners...a beautiful, well-bred Southern lady...the both of them! We enjoyed our visit so much. Thank you, Dawn, for venturing so far into the deep backwoods. We'll have to do it again!

Monday, December 25, 2006

It's NOT a 'Good Thing'

We're back at the HoZ now. We had gone to our 'fake' Midnight Mass. 'Fake' because it's at 9:00PM. A couple of years ago, our parish voted on when to have midnight Mass. Since we have mostly old folks, midnight is now officially 9:00. We went to Mama Bear's house after Mass, had a late dinner, and stayed the night with her. Since we didn't even have a tree up at our house, and she did, it just made sense to open presents there. Anyway, Mama Bear had worked all day cleaning house and cooking, and didn't have time to make the beds in the guest bedroom where BR and I would be sleeping. She was very apologetic about it, and told her to relax. If somebody else is doing the cooking, the least I could do is make the bed in which I'll be sleeping. I got the sheets out of the dryer, and went in cheerfully to make the bed. Until I went in the guest room, that is. Then I realized why she was so apologetic. The pillows still had their tags on them. Martha Stewart tags. She was going to make me sleep with Martha Stewart!!! And here I've been thinking all these years that Mama Bear really liked me! I ripped those tags off the pillows. Yes, I know I risked the authorities coming in for my daring to take off those tags with all their printed warnings to not remove the tag. Even worse, it would be the Martha Stewart House Perfect Police. But I was not going to sleep with Martha Stewart, lol. And if you've never read "All I Want for Christmas is to Slap Martha Stewart", go here and read it. It's from her pre-prison days, but the message still holds true for today.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Merry Christmas

Not all my readers believe in God. That's fine. However, I do think they all respect my belief in Christ, and aren't upset that I wish them a Merry CHRISTmas. I do believe in God and a man named Jesus Christ. And I believe he came to bring peace to men. (And no, I don't get upset by that that sentence doesn't say men AND women...I don't believe in this PC crap that tries to make society recognize everyone's individuality, or ethnic group, or sexual orientation, etc.!) Well, we don't always see that peace. And that's because society tries to reach out to everyone's individuality, ethnicity, or sexuality, etc. The only thing we all have in common is that we are ALL different from each other, but all are striving, in one way or another, to find peace. In trying to recognize everyone, PCers are creating more division and conflict between us. They say they want 'peace', but they down trod Christianity and its message of peace, saying that it's the divisive factor. Some of the greatest artwork of mankind was inspired by the Christian faith (Michelangelo, Raphael, Fra Angelico, and so on.) What kind of artwork do we have today, where Christianity is mocked? Crap. Crap. Crap. And oh yeah, a crucifix in urine, but I won't link to that. That artist sounds like someone who can't get past his teen angst. But all that is okay. I am definitely not the best Catholic/Christian by a long shot. But I have my faith, and through that faith, I wish for you to have peace. Peace of mind, peace of soul, peace of any kind. Sometimes that peace may only last for a few moments, and it's a long time before you find it again. But listen for a moment to this song:

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day I heard the bells on Christmas day Their old familiar carols play And mild and sweet the words repeat, Of peace on earth, good will to men. I thought how as the day had come, The belfries of all Christendom Had roll'd along th' unbroken song Of peace on earth, good will to men. And in despair I bow'd my head: "There is no peace on earth," I said, "For hate is strong, and mocks the song Of peace on earth, good will to men." Then pealed the bells more loud and deep: "God is not dead, nor doth He sleep; The wrong shall fail, the right prevail, With peace on earth, good will to men." 'Til ringing, singing on its way, The world revolved from night to day, A voice, a chime, a chant sublime, Of peace on earth, good will to men!
That poem/song was written in by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in 1863. So this particular battle of secularism vs. the sacred isn't new. Maybe the commercialism is stronger than ever, but the search for inner peace still goes on. So I wish you many, many chances to find that peace with your family and friends. Every time your child hugs you, every time you make your parents smile, every time you hold the door for someone else, or let someone out in busy traffic...I wish you the happiness and contentment you feel in those moments. I believe those moments are sharing Christ's peace, even if you don't believe in God. Because Christmas is simply a celebration of birth, life, and love. And there can't be anything wrong with that. Merry Christmas to you all.

Friday, December 22, 2006

What's in a name?

Each Christmas, I give my students a laminated card that has their name on it, along with the meaning of their name. Sometimes I have to do pretty serious and creative research to find a meaning for some of these names. And I have to be careful, of course, with the names that mean 'God has blessed' or some other religious aspect. But the kids love it. And every year when I make out the cards, I think of Brandy. Brandy was a student in my class my first year of teaching. She was a sweet girl, but had some serious emotional problems. Her father was a merchant mariner, so he was gone much of the time. Brandy's mother liked to party, so she would lock Brandy in a closet while she went out. The little girl developed a fear of storms (who wouldn't, being locked in a small, dark area with scary noises booming around you). I'm sure she suffered other abuse and neglect as well. By the time Brandy was in my class, mom was out of the picture, and dad had given up his merchant mariner job so he could be home and take care of his daughter. Well, I made out the cards with the kids' names and passed them out. Brandy took hers and read it...disbelief evident in her face. You see, I couldn't put 'alcoholic beverage' on her card. So I put 'Fiery Torch' as the meaning, as 'brand' is also an archaic term for a torch. Then she asked me if her name really meant that, instead of a drink. (I had the impression that her mother stressed the alcoholic drink.) I reassured Brandy that her name could also mean 'fire'. Her face lit up. And she kept that card in her desk, near the front edge, the rest of the year. The rest of her desk may have been a mess, but that card stayed neat. She would be a young woman now, in her mid-20s. I think of her from time-to-time, hoping that she's had a good life. Maybe she has her own children now, and picked out their names carefully and lovingly. She deserves a good life. And as Shakespeare wrote, "What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet." I wish you well, Brandy-Rose.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Lovely Lunch

Had a wonderful lunch with a new/old blogger friend today. Can't believe how I'm finding 'old' friends/acquaintances in the blogosphere. How does one come across people you know in the infinite variety of the internet? What is it about their blog that catches your attention, and keeps it, so that later you find out you know (or have known in the past) that person? And how do you find that particular blog to begin with? I can't even remember the first 'blog' I read. I do know that Rachel Lucas (I sure do miss her blog and her rants) and IMAO were among the first I read regularly. Then I found the Rottweiler. And then somehow I wandered over to the Bad Example family's property. Bou and I are from the same hometown (in high school she double-dated with my 'first' boyfriend). I dated Sticks' husband. (Umm, I'm seeing a pattern here, and not one I really wanted to see.) And the blogger with whom I had lunch today was someone I went to school with (she's welcome to identify herself in the comments if she wishes, but as always, I want to respect people's privacy. But I can say I never dated any one in her life! As far as I know, anyway!) But I didn't know who those people were when I started reading their blogs. Just little snippets of info here and there clued us in. Which can be scary. It shows that there really is no true privacy on the internet. Little bits of seemingly unrelated info can be put together to give away your identity. It makes me think of a time way back before the Internet, back when I was in the National Guard. I was a Medical Administrative Specialist, which meant I worked in the clinic. (Remember President Bush's 'fake but accurate' memos? When that story broke, I knew by looking at the letter that it was a fake. I had typed too many of those types of letters, so I knew that Rather's letters were forgeries.) Anyway, sometimes one of my duties was to notate medical records with immunization and HIV test results. Usually those results came in on one sheet of paper, with all the unit member's names and 'NEG' typed next to it on the 'HIV' section. Well I came in one weekend, and couldn't find that report. No biggie. I told the head enlisted person, and she said she'd take care of it. Then a Guard member came in for an appointment. It wasn't time for his physical, but he had received a notice saying he had to come in for an appointment at such-and-such a time. I went to pull his record, but it was no where to be found. Then another med admin person mentioned that the Lt. Col. (head of the clinic) had asked for that record earlier, and still had it in his office. *flash* The light bulb went off over my head...the missing HIV report, the missing medical record, the guy having no idea about why he had an appointment. I happened to be standing next to the head tech (I had been going to tell her about the guy waiting for the appointment) and I just turned to her and asked, "Does that guy have AIDS?" She grabbed my arm and pulled me into an empty office, and began asking me how I could possibly know. She couldn't believe I figured it out from the info I had. I just happened to have stumbled across all the pieces to put together. One of the other med admin people could have been sent to look for the record, or sign him in, or been asked to enter the HIV info. But it really freaked out the higher-ups that I figured out the guy had HIV/AIDS. I do know they changed how they handled test results after that. I don't know what happened to that guy. But as far as I know, nobody else knew. And it could have been a 'false-positive'. For his sake, I hope so. But I'll never know, since I moved shortly after that. Not that it would have been any of my business, anyway. So, how did I get from a wonderful lunch to AIDS? Blech. But it was just a reminder to me that while the internet is a wonderful place, it can be a scary place, too. But I still had a good lunch and visit, thanks to the internet!

Feeling Narcissitic today...

I saw this at Janet's Ordinary Life and at Cindi's place. I decided it was a neat way to think about one's life, so here it is. Feel free to tag yourself if you want. Rules – copy the list and bold face the items you’ve done. Wait for some comments then answer the questions. 01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink 02. Swam with wild dolphins 03. Climbed a mountain 04. Driven anything over 100 MPH 05. Been inside the Great Pyramid 06. Held a tarantula 07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone 08. Said “I love you” and meant it 09. Hugged a tree 10. Bungee jumped 11. Visited Paris 12. Watched a lightning storm at sea 13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise 14. Seen the Northern Lights 15. Gone to a huge sports game 16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa 17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables 18. Touched an iceberg 19. Slept under the stars 20. Changed a baby’s diaper 21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon 22. Watched a meteor shower 23. Gotten drunk on champagne 24. Given more than you can afford to charity 25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope 27. Had a food fight 28. Bet on a winning horse 29. Asked out a stranger 30. Had a snowball fight 31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can 32. Held a lamb 33. Seen a total eclipse of the moon. 34. Ridden a roller coaster 35. Hit a home run 36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking 37. Adopted an accent for an entire day 38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment 39. Had two hard drives for your computer 40. Visited all 50 states 41. Taken care of someone who was drunk 42. Had amazing friends 43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country 44. Watched wild whales 45. Stolen a sign 46. Backpacked in Europe 47. Taken a road-trip 48. Gone rock climbing 49. Midnight walk on the beach 50. Gone sky diving 51. Visited Ireland 52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love 53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them 54. Visited Japan 55. Milked a cow 56. Alphabetized your CDs 57. Pretended to be a superhero 58. Sung karaoke 59. Lounged around in bed all day 60. Played touch football 61. Gone scuba diving 62. Kissed in the rain 63. Played in the mud 64. Played in the rain 65. Gone to a drive-in theater 66. Visited the Great Wall of China 67. Started a business 68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken 69. Toured ancient sites 70. Taken a martial arts class 71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight 72. Gotten married 73. Been in a movie 74. Crashed a party 75. Gotten divorced 76. Gone without food for 5 days 77. Made cookies from scratch 78. Won first prize in a costume contest 79. Ridden a gondola in Venice 80. Gotten a tattoo 81. Rafted the Snake River 82. Been on television news programs as an “expert” 83. Got flowers for no reason 84. Performed on stage 85. Been to Las Vegas 86. Recorded music 87. Eaten shark 88. Kissed on the first date 89. Gone to Thailand 90. Bought a house 91. Been in a combat zone 92. Buried one/both of your parents 93. Been on a cruise ship 94. Spoken more than one language fluently 95. Performed in Rocky Horror 96. Raised children 97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour 99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country 100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over 101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge 102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking 103. Had plastic surgery 104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived 105. Wrote articles for a large publication 106. Lost over 100 pounds 107. Held someone while they were having a flashback 108. Piloted an airplane 109. Touched a stingray 110. Broken someone’s heart 111. Helped an animal give birth 112. Won money on a T.V. game show 113. Broken a bone 114. Gone on an African photo safari 115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears 116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol 117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild 118. Ridden a horse 119. Had major surgery 120. Had a snake as a pet 121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon 122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours - Good Drugs 123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states 124. Visited all 7 continents 125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days 126. Eaten kangaroo meat 127. Eaten sushi 128. Had your picture in the newspaper 129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about 130. Gone back to school 131. Parasailed 132. Touched a cockroach 133. Eaten fried green tomatoes 134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey 135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read 136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating 137. Skipped all your school reunions 138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language 139. Been elected to public office 140. Written your own computer language 141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream 142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care 143. Built your own PC from parts 144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you 145. Had a booth at a street fair 146. Dyed your hair 147. Been a DJ 148. Shaved your head 149. Caused a car accident 150. Saved someone’s life

The Gift of Life...

That's what I did today...I gave the gift of life. I used to give blood regularly, until I moved to a rural town where there is no blood bank. But there was a blood drive today at our town's Civic Center from 12 - 6. When I got there, the good folks were having to set up more stations to process the blood donors. It seems that they only expected around 34 people for the entire day. When I got there around 2:00, I was number 47, and there were about 15 people behind me, and more coming in when I left. But nobody complained about the wait. In fact, it was almost like a party. All the donors waited patiently, joking around and telling stories. One of the best lines I heard came from a man who thought he was having a 'teachable moment' with his child. He had gotten in the wrong seat, and when he was redirected to the right one, he told his daughter, "See? Sometimes daddy makes a mistake." To which his cute little daughter replied, "Yeah, and sometimes you just tell a lie." Bwa-ha-ha! I finally made it to the front of the line, and had to go do the medical history and all that. Which includes getting pricked on the finger so they can test your blood for iron. (Gee, I hope I'm not rusty!!!) I hate that part worse than the needle for drawing blood from my arm. And then they squeeze your finger...ouch...to get the blood out. They drop some blood in a blue solution...whoops, my blood didn't drop fast enough. (I guess I don't have to worry about rust after all!) That means they have to spin my blood to do a further test for iron. Which means the mean lady squeezes my finger AGAIN! OUCH! My blood gets spun, tests out okay, so I'm on the the vein drain area! I was directed to a table to pick up the collection bag. There was a huge pile of them on the table, all waiting to be filled with blood. I walked up, and the lady behind it asked me what blood type I had. I told her I was A-, so she said, "Oh. Pick up that one on the end of the table. The one by itself." ...So what's wrong with my blood, that I get the poor little bag set off by itself??? If you don't like my blood, I'll just go offer it to a vampire...at least I'd get a kiss on the neck out of the deal! I finally make it to the actual donation area. I get prepped...the tech did a great job. I barely felt the needle stick. And my blood comes out pretty quickly, faster than the techs expect. I like to 'race' the other blood donors to see who can fill their bag the fastest. (Note to self...don't get seriously injured...I'd bleed to death before EMTs could get there to stop the bleeding...arrgghh) After I'm done donating, I get a snack...drinks and cookies and crackers and such. Yummy. The finished donors hang around awhile there, laughing and joking still. AND I got a cool long-sleeved t-shirt (Army Green!!!) and a chance to win a cruise and a pair of airline tickets. But most importantly, my blood has gone to help someone. What better gift to give at Christmas? If you have never donated before, please consider it. Typically donations decrease during the holidays because of folks being so busy. But there is also an increased need for blood as the increased traveling results more traffic accidents. Please. Give the gift of yourself. Give the gift of life.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Seen on a bumper sticker:

Friends don't give friends fruitcakes.

A Christmas Meme....

Teresa at Technicalities tagged me...and I'm only doing it because I have tons of other work that I'm really, really, really, wanting to avoid. 1.Wrapping paper or gift bags? Paper...it prolongs the other person getting into their gift. 2.Real tree or artificial? Neither. We AREN'T having a tree this year. 3.When do you put up the tree? See #2 4.When do you take the tree down? See #3 5.Do you like eggnog? Yummy! Bitterroot makes it with Southern Comfort (see this post!) 6.Favorite gift you received as a child? Star Wars album (yes, I was geeky even then!) I would fall asleep listening to it. Wish I still had it...it could be worth some money on ebay. 7.Do you have a nativity scene? No, we have a 'Beartivity': 8.Hardest person to buy for? Bitterroot - he has excellent taste, which means $$$$$$. 9.Easiest person to buy for? Buck, the youngest. He likes cheap stuff. 10.Mail or email Christmas cards? Neither. 11.Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Can't recall at the moment, but I'm sure it was from my ex-husband. 12.Favorite Christmas movie? The Grinch, and A Christmas Story 13.When do you start shopping? Uhh, haven't started yet, so I can't answer this one. 14.Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes, for a Dirty Santa party! 15.Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Mama Bear's Rum Cake. 16.Clear lights or colored on the tree? See #4 17.Favorite Christmas song? O, Holy Night 18.Travel at Christmas or stay home? Thank you God, I can stay at home! 19.Can you name all of Santa’s Reindeer? Yes. Even Olive. 20.Angel on the tree top or a star? See #16 21.Open the presents on Christmas Eve or morning? When I was a kid, we could open one on Christmas Eve. Now, all on Christmas. 22.Most annoying thing about this time of year? Bitterroot's Bah Humbug attitude. I understand where it comes from, but I tell him he just needs to grab Christmas by the balls! 23.Do you have Jesus in your heart this Christmas? Not while I'm driving, I'm sorry to say. 24.What would you like for Christmas? The winning lottery ticket. Whom to tag....this particular meme is really making the rounds right now, so if you've been tagged, just ignore me. Besides, Bitterroot needs to tag some people, so I can't take all of them! I'll just do three: Lady Heather (I shouldn't do this to her...she has Christmas to get ready for, PLUS she's getting ready to move. Out of State. Now I feel guilty. Dawn at Overactive Imagination. Since she should have the time since classes are out right now. They are out now for you, aren't they? Oh, shoot, I'm feeling guilty again! Sticks at From Chaos to Serendipity. You haven't been too busy have you? Just because you haven't posted much lately doesn't mean you're busy. It just means that you don't have anything to post about. So I'm just helping you, right? Dammit, more guilt.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

A lesson for kids:

Be careful about bugging mom too much (or the teacher, as far as that goes!)
Bad Penguin - video powered by Metacafe

What a beautiful story...

I saw this article today...it's about the Holocaust and survival...and the dignity of the human spirit...and destiny and faith...and a mother's love. I'm looking forward to seeing that story when it becomes a movie. I admire the Jewish people - their traditions, their faith, their fortitude in all they have suffered through the ages. =HC=/Bitterroot and I have always said if we weren't Catholic, we'd be Jewish. Our faith does come from the Jewish faith. After all, Jesus was a Jew. I made that remark once in front of some co-workers back when I was in college. (I was living in a highly Baptist-concentrated area of Texas at the time.) This little old black lady almost went into hysterics, saying: 'Jesus was NOT a Jew. He was a CHRISTIAN!!!' I never meant to cause her offense, and I made sure not to discuss religion around her after that. But Jesus was a Jew. The 'Last Supper' was a celebration of the Jewish Passover. And I have heard that people who practice Islam honor Jesus as a prophet, and his mother Mary is very revered also. She is supposedly mentioned in the Koran many more times than Mary is mention in the Bible. But how can that be, since Mary is a Jewish woman? Enough of the theological implications...my head hurts, lol. I don't know any Jewish people, but if any of you readers are, I'd like to wish you a 'Happy Chanukah'. I saw this blessing from the second night (I believe), and marvel in its universality in applying to us all: Blessed are you, Lord, our God, sovereign of the universe who has kept us alive, sustained us, and enabled us to reach this season. (Amen) Amen, indeed.

Do you feel 'Special'?

Neither do I, despite Time Magazine's naming you, me, and anyone else "using or creating content on the World Wide Web" for their 'Person of the Year'. Uhh, to quote from the movie "The Incredibles":

Bob: "They keep creating new ways to celebrate mediocrity."
and
Helen Parr (to her son): "Everyone's special, Dash." Dash: "Which is another way of saying no one is."
As was stated in the article:
"If you choose an individual, you have to justify how that person affected millions of people," said Richard Stengel, who took over as Time's managing editor earlier this year. "But if you choose millions of people, you don't have to justify it to anyone."
I thought reporting was meant to be a means of bringing truth to the masses, and 'justifying' with facts found during an investigation. Instead, you've gone and wimped out...can't even take the time to single out an individual... And to be honest, I don't like being lumped in with the predators and perverts who trawl the internet looking for victims. Having had our family deeply affected by one of those deviant monsters, I don't want to share anything with them on any level. So thanks, but no thanks, Time Magazine. I neither need NOR want your 'honor'. I'm turning it down.
Our own heart, and not other men's opinions, forms our true honor.   -Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Friday, December 15, 2006

I'm finally getting some Christmas spirit...

I have mentioned recently that I have been involved in a major project that has taken up most of my time outside of work. At first it was just my daughter and me, and then Buck got involved also. But now it's about to draw to a close, so I can feel comfortable talking about it. It started out simply, really. My daughter enjoys acting. So she tried out for a local production of "The Worst Best Christmas Pageant Ever". If you have never read that story, please do yourself a favor and read it. It's not too long, and if that story doesn't get you into the spirit of Christmas, then you might as well be a farookin' liberal who doesn't believe in anything...I'd just have to quote to you from Mr. Dick at Big Dick's Place,

"Merry Christmas to all of you Goddamned Baby Jesus haters."
(WARNING: Mr. Dick's place is a very, very grown-up place...clicking on links may cause you some serious concern if you are of a sensitive nature.) Anyway, my daughter got a part in the play. Then the director asked me if I would like a role. I have always had this secret desire to act, but never had the guts to do it. And since I would have to be at the practices anyway, why not???? So Princess No and I were in this production together. Later on, I saw the need for a part that Buck would be perfect for, and the director put him in too. I also did a lot of the costuming. (I'm sure the director saw an opportunity for 'free' seamstressing, but I enjoy sewing, and these were fun costumes to create.) So despite the massive amount of time involved in this project, I had a blast. I have met some new people, and learned about the world of acting. I don't know that I'll ever want to be in another production, but I am so, so glad that I was in this one. This story is about these six awful kids, the Herdmans, who drink, smoke, whip up on kids, and cause general mayhem. They've never been to church before, the only 'safe' place to get away from them, until someone brags about the 'goodies' they get at church. Then the Herdmans barge in, and get all the major roles in the Christmas Pageant: Mary, Joseph, the Angel of the Lord, and the Three Wisemen. I don't want to spoil the end of the story if you haven't read it, but it's the funniest way of getting Christmas spirit. You'll literally laugh and cry with this story. A couple of funny incidences with our play:
  • Our original 'Imogene Herdman' (the eldest girl) really and truly was an 'Imogene Herdman'. On opening night, an hour before the show started, it was announced that the actress who played her part had been picked up for violating her probation. Seriously. We had to get two other 'Imogenes'...one for last weekend, and one for this weekend.
  • The littlest shepherd in the play is just the cutest boy imaginable. His mother also has a minor role in this play, and she often stands in the wings to give moral support to her son. Tonight she was there, hissing his name repeatedly as he was on stage. I was trying to figure out what she was doing, since it wasn't time for his lines yet. She must have seen my look, because she whispered, "He's picking his nose." She looks back at the stage then blurts out, "Oh. My. God. Now he's eating it!" Well, I'm too tired to think of any more. This play has pretty much taken up all my free time for the last month or so. But this play has helped me find my 'Christmas Spirit'. The best part of it is the laughter we hear from the audience. It's a wonderful feeling to be a part of bringing the joy of Christmas to others. I haven't done my Christmas shopping yet, and I still probably won't put up a tree. But those two things aren't really what it's all about. Christmas is ultimately the story of a man who came to die for us...No greater love... And to quote the venerable Dr. Suess:
    "Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more."
    Here's to all of you out there...I wish you the joy of Christmas, and most importantly, stop and take the time to enjoy it. Maybe even read "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" with your family. But take the time to simply be with them instead of rushing around trying to make it the 'best' Christmas ever. The 'Best' Christmas was the first one...ain't no way you can top it. But you can take time to appreciate the love of your family and friends. Merry Christmas!

  • Thursday, December 14, 2006

    A Reindeer decoration for Bou...

    Poor Blog-Mama Bou...her Christmas spirit is being spread thin. Even her reindeer decorations are in bits and pieces. I have the solution for her. Just add some red light bulbs and voila! A dead reindeer displayed in all its redneck glory! There now, don't you feel better with the worry about the dead reindeer gone? And just think...it'll probably piss off the neighbor with all the awful inflatable decorations. That alone ought to brighten your day!

    I knew it!!!

    You can't tell me that I'm the only one who saw this picture of Pelosi and didn't immediately think of this one: And then I next thought of this song.

    Wednesday, December 13, 2006

    Too much Christmas spirit...

    Well, I may not have any Christmas spirit, but my students at school certainly do. Today, they just wouldn't shut up or stay seated. Lots of impulsive behavior. So, I tried some behavior modifications. I have written the words 'Christmas Party' up on the board. Each letter represents 5 minutes for our party next Wednesday. If the class acts up, I erase a letter, and 'zip' 5 less minutes for the party. I tried to be patient, but finally had to chew some butt, emphasizing the need to stay seated, raise your hands, and wait to be called upon before saying anything. And I erased away 5 minutes of the party. I knew I had made a good impression come lunch time. I was sitting and enjoying my lunch (the cafeteria makes GREAT fried chicken). I happen to look up and the six kids at the far end of the table all shoot their hands as straight and high into the air as they can go, not saying a word, but looking at me intently. Really intently. I go to see what they need. And I am greeted with, "Mrs. Who, Johnny just threw up!" Yeah, it was gross...but they weren't jumping up and yelling it across the cafeteria either! Please, dear God, just let me make it through next week! And whoever thought that having students in school until 4 days before Christmas was a good idea...well, you need something worse than just coal in your stocking. If I weren't so worn out from having to cover myself in Germ-X, I'd think of something...

    The truth about Santa...

    Over at Ack!Thbbbt! place, Roses had this post up about her son not believing in Santa anymore. LemonStand also lamented in the comments that only 1 of hers still believes. Ladies, it's far better that your kids just think that Santa doesn't exist, rather than see the REAL truth about Santa!

    Tuesday, December 12, 2006

    Newborns can be so fussy....

    Poor =HC=. He just gets 'born' yesterday, (first post here), and then finds out the comments aren't working right. He gets the joy frustration so many of us have had in playing around with html or whatever it is!! He seems to get that problem fixed, and then this scenario happens: 9:34 Computer working slowly. Has difficult time 'playing' on his site. Reboots machine. 9:39 Computer STILL working slowly. Asks others (Mrs. Who and Eraserhead) if their computers are acting up. They are, so =HC= goes to reboot 'the box' where the miraculous Internet enters our humble abode. 9:46 Computer still has difficult time with the 'net. 9:47 Reboots machine AGAIN. 9:55 Can we say slower than a turtle? 9:56 Calls our Internet Provider (IP). Gets busy signal. =HC= groans. 9:57 Calls IP again. Pushes wrong button, slams phone down. 10:00 Calls IP again. Gets through to a recording, asking for more buttons to be pushed. 10:03 Runs around screaming, "I can't get to my blog!!! Why did you ever do this to me, Mrs. Who???" 10:06 Calls IP again. Gets a real person this time, who says, "Oh,yeah, that was reported about 2 hours ago. We should have someone here to work on it in 30 minutes or so. Check back in about 2 hours." 10:08 =HC= grips phone receiver in both hands, smashing into his forehead. He starts screaming at our IP provider, quoting a memorable line from Rachel at Pereiraville at this post: "you s*(k, you s*(k, you f*(k!ng s*(k!!!!" 10:09 Thinking discretion is the better part of valor, Mrs. Who slinks off to bed before =HC= can blame her some more. 1:25 =HC= finally comes to bed, but with a smile on his face because the internet FINALLY came back on, and he was able to check on his blog. (Damn....I think I've created a monster!)

    Sunday, December 10, 2006

    It's a boy!!

    I mean, it's my husband. I mean, =HC= is now deciding to start his own blog. Does this mean I'm my own mother-in-law now???? And Harvey is the blog-father...the incestuous nature of the Bad Example family prevails today, since that makes Harvey a blog-greatgrandfather of his own blog-son. (And since I live in Alabama, that makes perfect sense for familial relationships!) And Blog-Mama Bou, you certainly don't look old enough to be a grandmother! Y'all having been asking and encouraging him to do this, so here it is: http://frictionandharmony.com/ He didn't want to be 'HubbyCubby' on his own blog, so he has chosen 'Bitterroot'; here's the story behind that name. So go over and welcome him! I'm looking forward to his stories...and be sure to check out the pictures from his misspent youth...isn't he cute (can't you tell I'm a proud Mama!) I love you sweetie! ***************************************************** FAIR WARNING: Adult language and content over at =HC='s place. As always, he is a gentleman around me...and my blog. Which is part of the reason he needed his own space! ************************************************************ Wait, wait, wait, wait!!! My labor and delivery still isn't over, I guess! =HC= is working on the commenting...he's trying to make it easier on you folks without having to wait on seeing what you've written. You can still go over and comment, but you might have to wait until his spam filter 'recognizes' you. It may take up to a day for it to recognize his new users. But be patient...he's just a newborn, after all! And it'll be worth it!

    Sunday Funnies - Mom's Letter to Santa

    Dear Santa I've been a good mom all year. I've fed, cleaned and cuddled my two children on demand, visited the doctor's office more than my doctor, sold sixty-two cases of candy bars to raise money to plant a shade tree on the school playground and figured out how to attach nine patches onto my daughter's girl scout sash with staples and a glue gun. I was hoping you could spread my list out over several Christmases, since I had to write this letter with my son's red crayon, on the back of a receipt in the laundry room between cycles, and who knows when I'll find anymore free time in the next 18 years. Here are my Christmas wishes: I'd like a pair of legs that don't ache after a day of chasing kids (in any color, except purple, which I already have) and arms that don't flap in the breeze but are strong enough to carry a screaming toddler out of the candy aisle in the grocery store. I'd also like a waist, since I lost mine somewhere in the seventh month of my last pregnancy. If you're hauling big ticket items this year I'd like a car with fingerprint resistant windows and a radio that only plays adult music; a television that doesn't broadcast any programs containing talking animals; and a refrigerator with a secret compartment behind the crisper where I can hide to talk on the phone. On the practical side, I could use a talking daughter doll that says, "Yes, Mommy" to boost my parental confidence, along with one potty-trained toddler, two kids who don't fight and three pairs of jeans that will zip all the way up without the use of power tools. I could also use a recording of Tibetan monks chanting, "Don't eat in the living room" and 'Take your hands off your brother,' because my voice seems to be just out of my children's hearing range and can only be heard by the dog. And please don't forget the Playdoh Travel Pack, the hottest stocking stuffer this year for mothers of preschoolers.It comes in three fluorescent colors and is guaranteed to crumble on any carpet making the in-laws' house seem just like mine. If it's too late to find any of these products, I'd settle for enough time to brush my teeth and comb my hair in the same morning, or the luxury of eating food warmer than room temperature without it being served in a Styrofoam container. If you don't mind I could also use a few Christmas miracles to brighten the holiday season. Would it be too much trouble to declare ketchup a vegetable? It will clear my conscience immensely. It would be helpful if you could coerce my children to help around the house without demanding payment as if they were the bosses of an organized crime family; or if my toddler didn't look so cute sneaking downstairs to eat contraband ice cream in his pajamas at midnight. Well, Santa, the buzzer on the dryer is ringing and my son saw my feet under the laundry room door. I think he wants his crayon back. Have a safe trip and remember to leave your wet boots by the chimney and come in and dry off by the fire so you don't catch cold. Help yourself to cookies on the table but don't eat too many or leave crumbs on the carpet. Yours Always...Mom. P.S. - One more thing...you can cancel all my requests if you can keep my children young enough to believe in Santa. ************************************************************************************ But as we all know, Mom is really Santa. And do you know anyone who stayed up to watch for Santa? I bet you don't, and here's why.

    Saturday, December 09, 2006

    Christmas Spirit

    I'm working very hard to get some Christmas spirit. I feel it coming closer, but then work or life steps in and BLAM! the spirit is gone. But I know it's there. I haven't been able to get 'out' much between work and another project I have going on. So I haven't really been out and about to see any Christmas lights or go shopping. (And since I work until Dec. 21st this year, it means I'll be shopping in the last few days before Christmas...ugghh! Maybe I'll get some bargains, though.) When I was growing up, a church over in Pensacola, St. Anne's, used to do a spectacular Christmas light display. They had an area set up like an old Western town that would have a 'Round-Up' in early October. There would be food booths and games, a tv or film star or music group would come, and they would have a 'shoot-out' in the dusty streets between the good guys and the bad guys. That is, until the PC police came in and they couldn't have the shoot-out anymore. *grumble* But the church would use the money raised from the round-up to put on a fabulous Christmas display. The church grounds would be lit (including the pecan trees all being lit up by white lights), and the 'town' buildings would all have displays in them, sponsored by local businesses. My favorite disply was one they had after 9-11. One of the buildings had two racks of votive candles of red, white, and blue arranged in an American flag. Santa was kneeling before the candles, lighting one, and praying. So very moving. But neither the Round-Up or Christmas Lights program are there anymore. So where do I turn for the spirit of Christmas? Of course, being a teacher, I turn to books. I would like to share some of my favorites with you. I read them to my students. And you know what? They get it. They get the meaning of Christmas. The spirit of love and kindness. Of course they love getting their presents...but to them, it goes hand in hand with the love of Christmas. So I guess I find my Christmas spirit in books and my students. They remind me of the 'good' that exists in our world, despite all the media does to show us only the bad. So here are some of my favorite Christmas books: The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski, illustrated by P.J. Lynch - The link does an excellent summary of the book. The pictures are beautifully done. My students can identify with the young boy in the story, who shows kindness, sweetness, and even patience. The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado - It's about a lamb named Joshua who is not like the other sheep because of his crippled leg. He is very sad when he gets left behind when the shepherds take the sheep to a greener valley. His friend the cow tells him that God has a plan for everyone. Joshua finds his purpose when he is able to curl up next to the baby Jesus to keep him warm...which he couldn't have done if he had been able to go with the other sheep. Kids are very sympathetic to 'being different', and love how Joshua the lamb is able to 'help'. Cajun Night Before Christmas - by James Rice - This a Cajun version of the traditional 'Night Before Christmas'. I use this story with the traditional one as a 'compare and contrast' lesson. The Cajun version is also written in such a way to help you 'sound' Cajun as you read it. The link has pictures of the pages so you can see that text. The kids especially love that Santa's reindeer are actually gators! The Littlest Christmas Angel illustrated by Paul Micich - I have a copy of the book in the link, but there are many illustrated versions of this story originally told in a radio broadcast back in the 40s. The littlest angel in this story is 4 1/2 years old...the age of my little brother when he died. In the story the littlest angel is always in trouble, dirty, and causing a ruckus. But in the end, he gives a wonderful gift to the new-born baby Jesus. I can never make it through this story without tearing up for thinking of my brother, but my students react so beautifully, trying to comfort me. And my favorite Christmas story: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson - This story is absolutely hilarious. The Herdmans are the worst kids in school history. They lied, drank, smoked, stole, and set things on fire. And then they get involved with the church Christmas Pageant. I absolutely LOVE this story. If you've never read it, please do. Our local community theater is putting it on, and our family is going. There now. I'm already feeling better about Christmas. I hope you will enjoy these books, if you get a chance. Are there any Christmas stories y'all enjoy? Please share them in the comments if you do. I'm always looking for good books to share with my students. UPDATE: Several of my readers (who are way smarter than me) seem to think that St. Anne's Christmas Lights are still going on. I will check with the Mouth of the South (otherwise known as my mom - as my bil says, if you want to get the news out, you can telegraph, telephone, or tell-a-Stella...my mom doesn't think it's too funny!) But being the good little Church lady that she is, she'll know for sure. UPDATE 2: The Church Lady has spoken. No Christmas Lights at St. Anne's since Hurricane Ivan. (I hate that I have to specify WHICH hurricane...it used to be you could just say 'the storm', and everyone knew what you meant.) Damn hurricanes...there goes my Christmas spirit AGAIN!

    Thursday, December 07, 2006

    Potty mouth, potty mouth!

    I had a hit recently from Saudi Arabia. I wonder if the searcher was Muslim. Because I would have to question their intent. From what I understand, the Islamic people look down on us Americans for our lack of morals. (And since they're judging us by the celebs from Hollywood, I can't say I blame them!!!!) But their search? 'Men and Women in the Bathroom'. Yeah. Real pure stuff there. (And for the record, MY post that came up for that search is NOT about carnal stuff. It was a joke about the different ways men and women perform their daily ablutions the bathroom.) And Harvey, ablutions is NOT a dirty word. So go back to reading your magazine...and I won't ask what kind of reading material you have!

    Taking the time to remember...

    Whew...have I really not posted since Sunday? I have been so busy. I still have no Christmas decorations up. My children haven't yet gone Mama Bou's sons' route yet...besides with my two eldest boys, the decorations they'd pin up would look more like this one. Well, from frivolity on to solemnity. Today (it's still before midnight as I write this, so I'm getting it in under the wire) is the 65th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. That's before even my mother was born. So why does it still have an impact today? Because it should. Because it matters. Because it shows America at its greatest. The American society of that time didn't try to take time to 'understand' the enemies' culture and feelings. They shook themselves off, stood up straight, and simply did what needed to be done. And when the fighting was over, they came home and did what needed to be done there. And they certainly didn't come home and denigrate each other. I had the honor of meeting a Pearl Harbor survivor a few years ago. I had been on a road trip, and had been following behind a car with 'Pearl Harbor' license plates. I said a silent, thankful prayer for the older man and what he had been through. A few miles later, we both happened to pull off at the same rest stop. I approached him to tell him 'thank you'. We shook hands, and he told me briefly of his experience. His ship had been hit, but was in shallow water and didn't completely sink. It was so intriguing to watch the play of emotions across his face...pride in being a sailor, gratitude for his life, and sorrow for those friends he had lost. All of those was wrapped up in a kind and sweet gentleman. Truly, he and the men like him are the 'greatest generation'. And the survivors are fewer and fewer in numbers. And that's why we can't forget. Whatever greatness we have are because of men (and women) like this sweet old man. They didn't give up, they didn't ask the rest of the world what they should do, they didn't let the enemy dictate the battle. I found the story below on a National Geographic site:

    My father, Martin W. Bender - MM2, was on the USS CALIFORNIA on December 7, 1941. He had been assigned to her since 1936. During those years he played Football & Baseball on the USS California’s teams competing with all of the other Battleships in the Pacific Fleet for the Iron Man Trophy. The first Iron Man originated in 1919. It was originally known and inscribed as the "Navy Department General Excellency Trophy for Capital Ships of the Pacific Fleet." Because of the trophy's design, it was soon nicknamed the "Iron Man Trophy. Only Battleships and the Lexington & Saratoga Aircraft Carriers could compete for this trophy. Ships fielded teams in Baseball, Football, Basketball, Swimming, Rowing, Boxing, etc. At the end of a certain time period the ship with the highest combined score in all sports would be awarded the Iron Man. Even after the fleet was transferred to Hawaii in 1940 they continued to compete for the Iron Man. The USS California won it for the last time in 1939. When my father joined the Navy in 1936 he went with his best friend from high school. They both competed on the USS California’s Baseball & Football teams. On December 7th they were both on duty in the engine room when the Japs struck. Their job was to get the engines on line and ready to move the ship if needed. In addition they manned the pumps that would provide pressurized air to the main guns. After the first torpedo hit they lost communication with the bridge. My father went to the bridge to inform the Captain that they had been successful in building up steam and the ship was ready to go. He was sent back down to the engine room and conveyed the message. By this time the engine room was flooding and needed to be evacuated. His best friend wasn't there - he had gone to the compressor room to man the compressor to ensure that it would continue working so the main guns would continue working. His last words were "This is my station and I will stay and give them air as long as the guns are going". Robert R. Scott was awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously. He was 26 years old at the time. My father passed away in November 2002. He never spoke of the war - only of the days he and Scotty played ball and competed for the "Iron Man". I did not find out about Scotty until 1981. I was in Hawaii with an Army buddy of mine and I called my dad who lived in Long Beach - I wanted to stop by and see him on my way back to Philly. He said "You're in Pearl? Pick up some flowers and put them on grave number so and so." When I asked why he just said, "Take care of it." I bought some flowers and my buddy and I went up to the "Punch Bowl" and asked the people in the office where grave number so and so was. They told me that the sailor had been moved to Arlington Cemetery. With that we asked the name of the person who was buried there - she told us that we could read about him in the showcase. She gave us his name and then we read the story of Robert R. Scott. I called my dad back and told him and he just said "Oh? Put the flowers on so and so's grave" and hung up. When I got to Long beach and saw him I asked about Scotty. At first he wasn't too talkative but then when it was right he told me. It was the first time I saw my father cry. It wasn't until after my father died that I found out about his Naval career. Through various people and his military records I found out he had been assigned to the USS Astoria (CV34) in January'24. While on the Astoria he fought at the Battle of Coral Sea in May '42 with TF-17, Battle of Midway in June "42 again with TF-17, and then at the Savo Island where the USS Astoria was sunk with three other ships on Aug 9, 1942. He was picked up by the USS Helm and transferred to the USS O'Brien (DD415) on Aug 15, 1942 only to be on her when she was hit by a torpedo from the Jap Sub I-15 while in TF-18 with the USS WASP, which was also sunk. The USS O'Brien made it back to Espiritu Santo where he was transferred to the USS Aaron Ward (DD483. From early October 1942 until November of 1942 he was in several surface engagements in support of Guadalcanal until she was hit 9 times by surface fire and stopped dead in the water on 13 November. She was towed in by a Navy Tug to Tolagi for repair. He was on the Aaron Ward on April 7, 1943 when she hit by Jap air planes. She sank while being towed, again to Tolagi by the Navy tugs Ortolan & Vireo. After that he was assigned to Service Squadron 10 until he could take it no longer and hitched up to the USS Hancock in September 1944. He came home by for Christmas of 1945 to San Francisco. The Hancock earned 9 battle stars during that time. I learned all of this from old shipmates and his service records after he died. He never spoke of the war. -Michael W. Bender
    (Michael Bender is also writing a book about these experiences. He has a contact e-mail address in the National Geographic link above.) ************************************************************************************ So tonight I sit and reflect. I offer a prayer for those who lost their lives on December 7, 1941. I also offer a prayer for those who were there and survived but have since passed on. And I offer my humble gratitude to those who survived but are still here. Thank you.

    Tuesday, December 05, 2006

    There is hope...

    I have a new student (a really sweet and respectful boy.) His mom is in the military. (That's a new trend I've noticed in the past two or three years. More and more of my students have moms on active duty.) On his first day of school, this mom was unable to bring her son in, so she came during her lunch break to check on him and to make sure I knew how he went home. We happened to be eating lunch. She stopped to introduce herself to me (I was eating at the teachers' table. I rarely, if ever, sit with my kids. Not very 'caring' of me, but the manners of kids these days...I can't handle watching someone talk laugh, spit, or yell with food in his mouth...or mashing their fries and then sucking them up through a straw....or tearing the foil that wrapped their burger and making 'grills' to put on their teeth...or folding the cardboard fry container into a cell phone shape and holding the greasy paper against their face and hair...eating pudding with their fingers....ohh, you get the picture.) Anyway, this mom's son didn't notice her right away. Well, probably because my whole class was talking and laughing. They were extremely loud. I told her to go over and see him, that he would love to have mom visit. So mom (in her uniform) went over to see her son. When they saw her, all my students. stopped. talking. All eyes were riveted on her. I don't know if she realized it, but those kids were impressed by her. The uniform of a member in the United States military still commands respect. There is hope for the future after all.

    Sunday, December 03, 2006

    HC's "Home-Brewed" Sunday Funnies

    *** Feline "AA" *** PK: Hello. I'm PoopKat. And I'm an alcoholic. This is my first meeting. All: Hello PoopKat. PK: It all started when my master [=HC=] gave me a taste of his eggnog with Southern Comfort™. He offered me a drop on his finger. I didn't like it at first - it smelled funny, and it was wet and messy so I backed away. But he looked like he was enjoying it, so I knew I wanted some. I licked a drop off his finger the second time he offered and... It. Was. Heaven. I had to have more. So he dunked another finger for me to lick. I was enthralled by the taste. It's not like the milk they give me - not even like the chocolate milk I've tried. This was... so much more. [PoopKat pauses to stretch and then starts 'bathing'] Moderator: PoopKat. We're listening. PK: Oh. So you are. As I was saying, I wanted more, but the Man just ignored my pleading eyes and gentle paw-taps. So I began sharpening my claws on his chair. He said "NO!" and shooed me away. Moderator: Get to the point, PoopKat. Why are you here? PK: The Man finally relented and gave me more. A LOT more. He gave me a saucer with the eggnog and said, "are you so sure you want it Kitty?" I'm pretty sure he's the Devil. Moderator: And you took it? PK: Not at first. Really, I didn't want to. I walked around the saucer and sniffed it. It was pungent and sweet, but I acted... indifferent. I waited for him to walk away and then... And then I... Moderator: Go on, PoopKat. We're here for you. PK: I DRANK IT ALL! Every last damned DROP! I licked the saucer clean and I. wanted. MORE. I didn't know what was happening to me - I felt funny all over. I meowed. I meowed Louder, and then LOUDER still... The Man had left the room, but when he came back, he still had his glass of eggnog with him, but it was almost gone! I panicked! I raced to his feet and rubbed against his ankles, purring as loudly as I could. I meowed - but it came out funny... It was almost a screech. The Man laughed at me... Told me to go away. Attendee #1: [wide-eyed] So what did you do? PK: Whatever I could - I had to get more. I HAD to get the rest of the eggnog away from the Man! I meowed, I purred, I did everything I could, and then... I sharpened his claws on his thigh. All: *gasp* PK: I know - I went too far. The Man yelped in pain and swatted at me, but I was undeterred. With him distracted from his glass, I knew I had to act quickly! I vaulted myself onto his desktop, and standing astride his keyboard, I put my whole head into the sacred vessel of magical eggnog, but it was... of no use. My eyes bulged and my tongue flapped futilely in mid-air just an inch above the bottom of the glass. The Man, who was no longer cussing at me started to laugh. I had no control of myself at the time, but now that I realize what I was doing... how I was acting... It's just so humiliating. Moderator: We know, PoopKat. We've all been there at some time or another. We're with you. PK: But it didn't end there... Attendee #2: It didn't? How much worse did it get? PK: I was crazed! I simply couldn't help myself. I knew that I couldn't reach the eggnog with my head in the glass, but if I could just... somehow... My paws. I realized I could reach in with my paws, dunk them in the last vestiges of that intoxicating delight, sopping it up with the fur between my toes and then... Lick them clean. It was bliss. I did it again and again as the Man just stood there and laughed at me. Or maybe he was crying. His eyes were wet and he was grabbing his middle like it hurt... Moderator: He should have called for an intervention! How cruel can he be? PK: Very cruel. After he was able to stand upright again, he took the glass away from me, and then he put me in the laundry room and shut the door. The room was spinning wildly, and I meowed over and over again as loudly as I could to get someone to make it stop. Or maybe I just wanted more eggnog - I can't remember. I played wildly with my toys for a while, until the Dog came in for the night because it was so cold outside. Instead of just giving her dirty looks as usual, I let her chase me. And instead of sleeping on the Iron shelf like I usually do when Dog spends the night... I... I... Moderator: What is it, PoopKat? What happened? PoopKat: *sobbing* I woke up with the Dog!! All: *muttered gasps and whispers* Moderator: Oh Dear God... =HC=

    Sunday Funnies - Bah, Humbug style...

    I just can't get into the Christmas spirit. We don't get off until 4 days before Christmas. What's up with that??? Do you really think the kids will be in any mood to learn anything the week before Christmas??? With a week like that, all I can say is that there better some kind of alcoholic beverage in my stocking this year. And because we don't get off until right before Christmas, I haven't even wanted to put up a tree. My tree usually comes down the day after Christmas anyway....we've been staring at them in the stores since before Halloween anyway. Enough is enough. So what would be the point of having a tree up for only 5 days? And don't even get me started on these new and improved inflatable yard decorations...I've even seen a freakin' merry-go-round one. What the hell is that about...now everyone can act like a redneck with junk in the yard for Christmas? So, since I'm in the mood I am, here's today's Sunday Funnies: Top 10 Things that Sound Dirty at Christmas 10. Did you get any under the tree? 9. I think your balls are hanging too low. 8. Check out Rudolph’s Honker! 7. Santa’s sack is really bulging. 6. Lift up the skirt so I can get a clean breath. 5. Did you get a piece of the fruitcake? 4. I love licking the end till it’s really sharp and pointy. 3. From here you can’t tell if they’re artificial or real. 2. Can I interest you in some dark meat? 1. To get it to stand up straight, try propping it against the wall. ************************************************************************************* And while Christmas is about the Light of the World coming to us, somehow I don't think that's what these people meant. Or these people (for goodness sake...the Macarena???) Or these people. (Although this particular light display is still one of my favorites. Probably because of the great music by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.) Coming soon: Mrs_Who's rant on Christmas not being Christmas anymore.

    Saturday, December 02, 2006

    Go, Navy!

    You beat Army (and earlier beat the Air Force, too)! My Granddaddy would have been so proud!

    Friday, December 01, 2006

    Whatcha hidin' for?

    Hey, you. Yeah, you. The one who comes by the HoZ almost daily via a proxy site. I'm very pleased you decided to drop by. And while I appreciate every loyal reader, I'm just wondering why you feel the need to hide. Although nothing is really 'hidden' on the internet, even behind multiple proxies. But whatever the reason, I'm glad you stopped by.

    So Zathras talks to dirt. Sometimes talks to walls or talks to ceilings, but dirt is closer. Dirt used to everyone walking on it. Just like Zathras, but we have come to like it. It is our role. It is our destiny in the Universe. So you see, sometimes dirt has insects in it. Zathras like insects. Not so good for conversation, but much protein for diet.
    -Zathras, B5, Conflicts of Interest

    Happy Birthday, =HC=

    Today is the birthday of the most wonderful man in the world...and I'm the one who receives the gift. He fills my heart with a happiness I hadn't known was possible. One of my most contented moments of the day happens after I hit the snooze alarm and curl back up against his warmth. We have this code for 'I love you'...three squeezes of the hand, with the other person squeezing back four times for 'I love you, too'. Sometimes that code is transmitted through tapping each other's feet as we lay half-asleep. We've had some tough times. But he is there for me. Always. So happy birthday, sweetheart. I can't give you that trip to Italy or Ireland right now. But your love has taken me beyond anything I could hope for. Thank you for the gift of you. You're my best friend.