Wednesday, June 30

The vending machine, the beacon of light that I turn to on many a dragging afternoon, is barren. NOTHING in it. Not even the rogue bear claw or Little Debbie treat that's been in there since the Ford administration. Just row upon row of emptiness. And last week, same thing. I didn't report on it last week because I figured it would be restocked the next time I paid the machine a visit. Not so.

What am I going to do without the mid-afternoon snack?

Oh, cruel, cruel world!
Bad Lady just tripped. I didn't see it, but I heard the *thwack thwack thud thwack* that I can only imagine was her stupid ass sandal getting caught on the carpet.

IDA Update: Those flip flops that I described yesterday? I just realized today that they have heels.
Hamster time, part 2
Oh yeah. I have a job.
Forgot about that for about an hour... oh look at that, lunch time!
Whee! More hamster bashing!
Hamster Time!!!
The new Big Brother houseguests have been revealed. Going on looks and the answers to their questions, here are my snap judgements of all of them:

Her answers are pretty standard. Not enough information to sway me to like or disklike at this point.

Seems pretty harmless. Not a fan of the highlights, though, dawg.

From this snippet:
"Why did you want to be on BIG BROTHER?
$500,000 was my motivation to meet some real people."
I deem him a tool.

She likes cats A LOT. That's a warning sign. Yes, I love my cats, but she makes way too many references to them. She also appears to be a vegan. But the most disturbing information that points me to Psychoville is:
"Hobbies: Decorating, dressing my mannequin, yoga, art"

Is his name pronounced as if it rhymes with "case", or does it have a funky French pronounciation like jah-say? Is it wrong of me to guess that he is gay? Here is a random quote from him:
"How do you plan to win BIG BROTHER?
A controlled mess! Like falling on the ground, yet missing the dog turd."

Great googly moogly -- is that thing on her chest a TATTOO? Holy schnikes. By general rule, hats on girls are bad. (Recall Erika's PHoF). She probably will be cool, I don't know how she is going to mesh with this group, though.

She looks sweet and demure, but then her answers are completely crude.
"What comfort item from home will you miss the most?
Big Italian sausage! Mmmm…you know what I'm sayin'?"
Uh, yeah, we do. She also says that peanut butter constipates her, so hopefully we'll be spared the toilet cam.


Love him. Look at his evil eyebrow! MUHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!! Ew, but he's a mortician.

Oh look, another Oklahoman. No comment. Might be tolerable.

Two words: Rush Limbaugh.
That's all I need to know about him.

We've seen your strategerie before... right now your name is Roddy 2.0.

With a name like that, you better go hard or go home. I think I like him, except he is reminiscent of Survivor Borneo's Greg Buis. And that's not a good thing.


P.S. We're all already having a wonderful time tearing these unsuspecting houseguests apart at Hamster Time, so feel free to join in the fun!
Another plug
Cool Citrus Basil fans: run, don't walk, to Bath and Body Works. (I'm lookin' at you, TVJ.) They are having a HUGE sale, and at least at the store I went to, there was lots of Cool Citrus Basil stuff, cheap. (Since as we all know, they always discontinue our favorite scents.)

Personally, I am a Water Blossom Ivy fan, as well as a Green Tea and Cucumber Essence fan, so I stocked a little wicker basket full of that stuff. FULL. But the damage was only (only!!!!) $54. Not too bad (justify, justify, justify).

The sale is over July 5, so like I said, those of you who want a last chance to stock up on your favorite scents better high-tail it to your nearest location.

(For my endorsement check, I'll take a trade of any of the following scents: Water Blossom Ivy, Green Tea and Cucumber Essence, Cucumber Melon, or a whole bunch of those Wallflower plug in things.)

Tuesday, June 29

Not a fan
I live very close to a large, outdoor venue which serves as host to many a summer concert. Tonight: Dave Matthews. Thursday: Jimmy Buffett. It's kind of cool because if I'm going to a concert, I can take the back roads and be there in 10 minutes. But it sucks when it's a weekday and I'm coming home from work because EVERYONE is flooding into that area off my beloved Turnpike, and I have to sit in traffic for a good while before I can veer off and take the back roads home. I'm hoping that the Dave Matthews fans aren't too early, because I'm going to try and cut out of work right at 5 and try and beat the rush. The Buffett concert is sold out so I know that is going to be bedlam with all the Parrotheads on Thursday.

I'll try and contain my road rage. "Try" being the operative word.
Excuses, excuses
I have heard some strange excuses for leaving work. Most, admittedly, have come from Bad Lady. My favorite was the "16 year old son has a fever and isn't answering his cell phone" rushing out of the office at 2 p.m. drama.

But Bad Lady has some competition on her hands. Inappropriately Dressed Admin, who is making her debut appearance in the Sketch Factor today, might just have her beat. Let me give you a little background. IDA is about 22, her mom works for this company but not at this office, so that is probably the only reason why she hasn't been fired. But her mom allegedly burned down one of her branches because she left some "Jesus candles" lit overnight. That's a whole other ball of wax, folks. IDA is a chubby girl. Yet IDA insists on wearing tight clothing that accentuates her stomach folds. We're talking skin tight. IDA has worn plastic flip flops ever since the snow disappeared. I think Owen has the same pair of flip flops. They are the ugliest things I have ever seen, even on him. They are flip flops you'd wear into the shower if you lived in a dorm. Not exactly work attire. And she'll wear those flip flops with a nice skirt. It's an enigma. And her toenails are usually painted blue. Either blue sparkle or just plain blue.

So now that you know a little about IDA, I will give you her fabulous work excuse. She left without telling anyone (except the front desk) why she was going home: she had cramps. Not the female kind. LEG cramps. You know, those kinds of cramps that REALLY affect your ability to work AT A DESK, SITTING DOWN ALL DAY.

Give me a freaking break.

Monday, June 28

Alert... alert...
The techies changed our e-mail system (and by changed, I mean "made minor tweaks") and I can hear Incompetent but Likeable swearing about it, because he can't figure out how to reply to an e-mail. I pity the fool who is going to have to explain it to him.
Just so you know
The burrito bol I ate for lunch Friday sustained me all through the day, I didn't eat dinner Friday night, and I wasn't hungry again until Sat. afternoon, and even then, still felt bloated from the gorge-fest.

And guess what I have in my lunch today? Go ahead and make fun of me, but I bet you are all jealous: strip cheese. Hell yeah! I got it at the store yesterday (note to husband: NEVER let your wife go shopping alone).

Also, Grace, I bought a stockpile of ramen noodles and thought of you... I am a big fan, as I previously mentioned. They're good for a Saturday afternoon when nothing else sounds good and everything that did sound good is gone.
Bitch Queen of Rage also will not be changing the cyan toner in the color printer, even though I would usually do this automatically, although it's not my job to do so... but today I don't feel like it.
B.Q. of R.
This is not going to be your typical SketchFactor post, so apologies in advance. But the news of the weekend, that being my sister-in-law's pregnancy, has kind of thrown me into a tizzy. And so I have become the Bitch Queen of Rage.

Bitch Queen of Rage screams at her husband endlessly and uses the word "fuck" a lot. A LOT. Bitch Queen of Rage throws pillows around the living room because she really wants to throw her sister-in-law around the living room.

Bitch Queen of Rage cries a lot, too. And doesn't sleep well. She wakes up in the middle of the night and wakes up her husband just so she can yell some more.

95% of you don't know my sister-in-law, but those of you who do, probably understand. I have made veiled mention of her in this space because I could literally write a novel about her life every week. That's one novel PER WEEK. A serial saga, if you will. And I don't like to post about her because she's family and I feel that some parts of my life should be kept private. But Bitch Queen of Rage doesn't agree.

Bitch Queen of Rage wants you to know that my sister-in-law has had her fair share of hard luck. But most of it she brings upon herself. There are some external factors, such as mental illness, that can't be helped, but the people with whom she chooses to surround herself, the substances she chooses to put in her body, and the decisions she makes, are all harmful to her. And this is just the latest example.

She can't take care of a child. She can't even take care of herself. We worry every day that she is going to wind up dead, either from an overdose or because someone has murdered her. She disappears for days on end without anyone knowing where she is. She can't take care of simple paperwork and her benefits lapse all the time.

Why, all of a sudden, she thinks she can straighten out for a child (which would mean quitting smoking, quitting all of her current necessary medication, quitting her self-medication, quitting hanging out with the shady crowd, and getting her shit together otherwise) is beyond me. This child, if she has it, will become either her parents' child, or, MY child. I guarantee it. Not to mention, that with all the substance abuse, this child has a high possibility of having some serious physical and mental disabilities right off the bat.

Am I being selfish to think that this baby is the worst possible thing that could happen to her and to my husband's family? I don't think so. No one in the family wants her to have it. But I think she's made up her mind already.

Bitch Queen of Rage wants to find her and get in her face and ask her how stupid could she have been to get herself in this situation and how she is making the biggest mistake of her life if she wants to have it, but what good is that going to do?

So Bitch Queen of Rage will stay at home and be quietly angry.

Sunday, June 27

Product Endorsement
When I saw the commercial for the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, I thought to myself, "Yeah, right. Like that would really work." In the commercial it shows you wiping the magic eraser on the wall and instantly removing stains, such as crayon.

The previous owners of my house had children, and our bedroom was one of the kids' rooms. On the wall behind our bed, there is maybe 24 square inches of crayon marks. It's in an inconspicuous place, so no one would see it, but it's one of those things that has bugged me since we moved in over a year ago. I tried in vain to use various cleaners to get out the crayon marks, and nothing would work.

But I'm telling you, the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser worked like a charm. The crayon rubbed right off. It took a little elbow grease, but the wall is perfectly clean now. You can't even tell there were ever crayon marks there.

Now I'll just sit and wait for my endorsement check...

Friday, June 25

On "To Do" List for the Weekend
1. Finish current book I'm reading and begin the next one on the list (I counted last night: I have 18 unread books in my possession. I lurrrrrve books!)

2. Find polite way to not have to stay too long at cousin-in-law's (???) graduation party. Not our favorite people in the world.

3. Determine what summer projects we are actually going to undertake (e.g. painting bedroom, major overhaul of scary basement)

4. See Fahrenheit 9/11 or another interesting movie (read: NOT "Dodgeball" or "White Chicks")

5. Sleep past nine a.m. tomorrow.

6. Restrain self from strangling sister-in-law who dropped huge bomb on us prior to grad party... she's pregnant. By sketchy-ass boyfriend. Wonderful!
Today is definitely shaping up to be a "Chipotle Chicken Fajita Burrito Bol for Lunch" kind of day.

Edited to add: The burrito bol was awesome. AND I brought back chips and the corn salsa to munch on all afternoon.

*expands to size of Orca the Whale*

Thursday, June 24

Do you think it's safe to eat cream cheese that's been sitting out all day? Not outside in the heat, just out in room temperature?

Because, I already just did.
The results are in
Refer to below post entitled "logo design" to fully understand this post

Current client for whom I am designing logos calls. (And was the source of inspiration for my post the other day). He has it narrowed down to logos #1, #2, and... of course... #5.

But then he proceeds to insult me by saying, "I could have done these myself with just clip art and fonts."

Well, then, dude... DO THEM YOURSELF. Go ahead with your bad self. If you're such a freakin' logo genius. Because I really don't care!
Excuse me for a moment while I do the chant of

"Please please please please please please
Please please please please please please
Do not let my 2:00 appointment show up" :

La la la la la la la la la
Le le le le le le le le le
Ra ra ra ra ra ra ra ra ra
Do re mi fa so la ti do

Deck the halls with no appointments
Fa la la la la la la la la

If I had a hammer
I'd cancel my 2:00 appointment

*looks at clock*

Seems to be working...

Gah! She's here.
Keg Boy
I had a voice mail when I got into work this morning, and it was just one word long. It was my husband, and he just said the word, "Hangovers!" and hung up. But he said it in the fashion of that Christmas novelty song, the 12 Things I Hate About Christmas, where one of them is the hangover. But the guy in the song says it in some kind of accent, maybe a Bronx accent, so it sounds like "Haaingovahs!"

You see, one of the disadvantages of owning a keg fridge is that there is really no limit to the amount of beer you can drink. If you buy a 12-pack, you're done after 12 beers. Not so with the keg.

So Keg Boy had a bit too much to drink last night. You would think this would happen more often, but it really doesn't. He usually has 2-3 pint glasses of beer and then calls it a night. I guess last night he really put it away. And I know he didn't sleep well, because I woke up in the middle of the night and he was awake, laying on his back with his hand over his head.

Poor baby.

Wednesday, June 23

I confess
I'm an anti-dentite. I hate going to the dentist. But I make sure that I go every six months to avoid massive problems. I have cavities all the time, so my mouth is full of metal and porcelain. But so far (knock on wood) no huge disasters.

I had my cleaning this morning. There's nothing worse than having two people prodding around in your mouth and then ask you a question. "How's work going?" the dentist asked.

"Goog," I said.

"Business ok right now?" enquired the dentist.

"Eep," I said.

And so on.

Tuesday, June 22

Tony Pierce gave a little nod to TSF. It's at the bottom of his rant about amazon. I don't know what the nod means, but I'm going to nod back, and see if it bounces back and forth, this nodding thing.
*adds a little wink for good measure*
Logo designer
One of my most-hated aspects of my job is designing a logo for someone or something. I have it in my mind that I should come up with five options.

The first logo I create is usually my favorite. It is also the one I believe in my heart that the person or entity will choose. It is the logo that gives the client everything they have asked for and more.

The second one is decent. Occasionally it will surpass the first one in creativity, or will be a bit outside the box.

The third is when the downward spiral begins. Neither good nor bad, the third logo I design is still within range of what the client is looking for, but lacks the spunk of the previous two.

Logo #4 is a desperation logo. The creative juices are running dry at this point and logo #4 is often the one that is done the fastest, with the least attention to detail.

And then the last logo, logo #5, well, that is a beast. I've used every shred of creativity on the other four, and there's nothing left. This logo takes forever for me to create. And I always hate it. It is the redheaded stepchild of logos. Its peppier, flashier siblings get to go to the ball and it doesn't.

But you know what?

People like logo #5 the best. 9 times out of 10.
Summer Reading
I need to get my ass off the computer and start reading more books. I have no less than ten unread books at my house. My mom keeps giving me books when she's done reading them, and though a lot of them are things I would never choose for myself, I feel like I should read them, or at least make the attempt.

The first one I read that she gave me, The Kitchen Boy, was actually really, really good. It is a fictional account of the last days of the family of Czar Nicholas (sp?) before they were murdered, from the perspective of a young boy whose job it is to work in the kitchen of the house where the family is being held captive. I know nothing of Russian history, and knew nothing of their fate prior to reading, but the story was well written and suspenseful.

I am about 5/6 of the way through The Princes of Ireland, which is a behemoth of a book -- a saga, my husband calls it -- which is another book I would never, in a million years, chosen for myself. It's sort of interesting in that it has some discussion of Irish history, mixed among some family feuds and romances and stuff. But I will not recommend it due to its length and the fact that there are a ton of other books that I would recommend before this one.

Stay tuned for more book reviews as I read them...
What I used to believe
When I was young, I used to believe that the female reproductive organ was a "buh-gina." This came from the girl down the street, who, as young as first or second grade, learned about the birds and the bees from her parents and then promptly reported back to me. I still didn't completely understand it until we got the big talk from the school in fifth grade.

I also used to believe that when I got to fourth grade, I was going to have all my pencils taken away. Either my first or second grade teacher said that the older kids just used pens and they weren't allowed to make mistakes while writing, so we were going to have to learn not to make mistakes either.

It's funny what we believe as children. Here is a neat site with some other funny ones on it.

What did you used to believe?

Monday, June 21

Excerpt of an actual conversation I just had with my boss
Him: Why did these [things we just printed] ship here?
Me: Because you wanted to pass them out at [some meeting].
Him: But why would you do that?
Me: Um, because, that's what you told me to do.
Him: (looks puzzled and walks away)
The Rulez
Want to know how to blog? The rules are posted here.
Tales of a Fourth Grade Mullet

Yep. That's me. Why am I wearing such couture? Find out. The Friday Chef's interview with yours truly, here. At least about the sweatsuit. I have no idea about the headband. Wasn't I stylish?
Things that should not be discussed, especially on TV and especially while I am trying to watch my soaps
My two most hated commericals on television right now both are shown in heavy rotation on SoapNet, and I saw both multiple times last night while I was tuned in to the Days of Our Lives marathon.

Ominous sounding male voice: If you don't wash your sheets with [Clorox bleach or some similar product] you may be sleeping in body soil. (More discussion of the gross things that are infesting your sheets, even if you wash them with regular detergent.

Ew. Body soil? I'd be worried about this if strangers were sleeping in my bed. But since I don't go to bed covered in dirt, nor does my husband most of the time, I'm not too concerned.

Three giggling girls at a beach.
Girl #1: Like, ohmigod, you're wearing a BIKINI when you have your PERIOD???!?!?!?
Girl #2: Like, yeah, what's the big deal?!?!?
(some discussion of bloating, cramps, etc. and the product, which I believe is Midol, which is supposed to get rid of all those symptoms.)

Girl #2: I could totally go for a brownie right now.
Girl #3: Oh yeah, she's menstrual.
Girl #1: *giggles*


Sunday, June 20

And damn proud of it
Just wanted y'all to know that I am the #1 search on yahoo in espanol for the word "octoporn." I thought I made that word up. Perhaps not. All I can offer you folks was that one story about the octopus that was mating... I don't even remember what the big deal about it was, although I do recall that it made me giggle like a child.
I'm gonna bust down the double doors
So the reunion turned out to be totally fun. It was bizarre -- no one showed up except for the people I was friends with! Well, a few other people here and there, but the group that was there the whole time were all people that I hung out with in high school. Tres cool. A couple of people didn't show who I really wanted to see, but all in all, good times.

We all exchanged e-mails / phone numbers, and it was learned that a few of us have blogs, so... *waves to Class of '94*

I didn't really sleep well last night as I was so wired from the overload of information and from seeing everyone again, and I'm off to my brother-in-law's birthday party -- he just turned 18... watch out world. You have been warned. What is he most looking forward to after entering the adult world? Getting a tatoo. Mmm hmm.

Friday, June 18

I'll have to get a wedding gift.

I'll have to return a wedding gift.
This is not a drill
Doctor's official diagnosis: inner ear infection. Thanks, that's what you said A MONTH AGO. And here's another $15 co-pay for your trouble.

It's here: 10 year high school reunion TOMORROW.

Thursday, June 17

Oh yeah. I have a blog.
Alanis got engaged, so in honor of her, here's a little synopsis of my day thus far:

When you get a run in your new panty hose,
And you run out of Kleenex when you have to blow your nose.
It's like ten thousand changes to some meaningless prose,
And then ten thousand more, why? Nobody knows.
And isn't it moronic... don't you think?

It's like rain... when it's supposed to be clear
It's my in-laws coming over to drink a lot of beer
It's the Bad Lady, who just won't disappear
And who would'a thought... it figures.

...And isn't it moronic, don't you think? A little too moronic. And yeah I really do think.

Anyway, I am going to escape from my cubicle and head on home, whereupon I must commence with the doing of the laundry, the buying of the Father's Day card, and the going to the dry cleaners, after whence I will commence the drinking of the beer with the in-laws out of the ceremonial keg fridge whilst the watching of the baseball game is simultaneously occurring. 'Night all.
You say it's your birthday
It's Lifeonhold's birthday too yeah! Happy birthday to you, Life!

Wednesday, June 16

I overslept this morning. We went to a baseball game last night. We saw the Akron Aeros, who are a minor league affiliate of the Indians. The future of the major league team. Pee-yew, they stink! The top of the first inning lasted nearly an hour as the Aeros pitching gave up 7 runs. Seven! We were sitting behind home plate and the umpire made a horrible call against the Aeros (a ball when it was obviously a strike)and people started heckling. Including my dearest husband.

I enjoy the game of baseball, but when I'm actually there, at the stadium, I pay no attention to the game. I'm all about the people watching. At a minor league game you get all sorts. You have the section of scouts with their radar guns, recording every move the pitcher makes. You have the section of wifes, all done up in their hootch outfits, some of them with babies, all sitting together. Occasionally you have the washed up celebrity in the audience (last night it was some old Browns player I had never heard of, but that's not shocking because until Tim Couch left he was about the only name I knew -- and Bernie Kosar of course). Then you have what my father-in-law calls the "misfit toys" -- the weirdos and crazies who frequent the ballpark. First you have Microphone Man, who carries a playskool-style microphone around the ballpark and announces everything that he sees. Mind you, the microphone is not turned on. For instance, he'll announce the menu at the concession stand. "All beef hot dog! Threeeeee dollars! Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, and Sprite!"

Then there's BatMan. He is an actual employee of the Aeros. A fully-grown, rotund adult, BatMan's role in the organization is to be the bat boy for the opposing team. He sits in their dugout and retrieves bats when necessary. However, he does it with his own special flair. He'll pick up the bat, and then weave it, figure 8 style, around his legs, and then behind his back, and then pick it up and carry it back to the dugout. During breaks between innings, he will come onto the field and dance to the songs they play over the loudspeaker. We're talking air guitar, we're talking a move akin to the Robot, we're talking the thing where you kind of make a wave with your arm and then the wave travels over to your other arm, as if a current is running through your body. And not executed gracefully by any means. Last night this dance routine was performed to Bon Jovi's "It's My Life," and also the classic "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)". I can barely do him justice, he's really something you have to see for yourself before you can appreciate the wonder that is BatMan.

Next there is Heloise. She is an 80+ something usher who gets up after the 7th inning and leads the crowd in "YMCA." Cute if you've seen it once, annoying if you've seen it anytime thereafter. I guess that while she's not booging it up to the Village People, she is complaining and bitching about everything under the sun.

The concession stands are a trip, as well. It was $1.50 beer night, and the entire concession stand is being manned by teenagers. There's one adult allowed to dispense beer, and she's in the back, so they have to find her, and when she finally comes, she has to fish in her pocket to find her glasses to check Owen's I.D. Twenty minutes later, we had beer.

And finally, you have the charm that only a smaller ballpark can bring. There are contests between innings, which usually are amusing enough to watch. For instance, two drunk, beer gut havin' buddies had to put their hands behind their backs, grab a chicken wing off a plate with their teeth, and race to the finish line. And this adorable little boy, in another contest, raced around the bases with the team mascot. He couldn't have been older than 3. He started down the first base line and instead of turning to go to second, he kept heading straight into right field, which brought the house down. Amazingly, he was set back on course and won the race to the crowd's delight.

It may not have been a spectacular game, but it was an enjoyable evening all the same. The final score was... oh hell. Do you actually think I remember?

Tuesday, June 15

I have the hiccups.
Meaning, for the second time today.
The first time I had them, Incompetent but Likeable tried to scare me. It didn't work. He did this sort of jumping thing and made an "aaaaaaah" noise, but in his goofy way.

I always get the hiccups in this fashion. They come, they go, they come back for an encore. And I make all sorts of embarrassing noises in the meantime.
To the Internet peruser who came here by searching for "making hubby sissy slave." Uh, good luck with that. I think.
Another huge rainstorm hit last night just as I was getting ready to go to bed. Owen, who was already asleep, got up and helped me close all the windows. I went into our bedroom to close those windows and exclaimed, "Mary, Mother of God!"

The moth was back.

This is no ordinary moth. It's a wriggling, brown, huge, ugly ass moth. And it was performing acrobatics all over the ceiling. "Dom! Get him!" I screamed. Dom, however, chose that moment to disappear into his litterbox.

The moth must have a death wish. I swear. This is the third time he has returned to the house after Owen released him outside. Unless it's three separate moths (which I suppose is possible). But we saw it in the house, let it go, it came back, we let it go again, and it came back again.

Dom, as you can imagine, is enraged by the moth's presence. He is quite a stalker when it comes to bugs and creepy crawlies (and dirty underwear). He could watch a bug on the wall for hours before he makes his move. He is especially adept at hunting moths. Except for this particular moth, which eludes him by perching high on the wall. Yesterday he was howling at the side door. I couldn't figure out why until I saw that damn moth hanging out on the door, near the top. Poor Dom.

So it's back. And if we let it go, it might come back again. Until Dom does it in. Which he will. No matter how long it takes.

Monday, June 14

The Amazing Race
Check out the teams here. I think poor Alison and Donny are going to be overshadowed by the hot blonde twins and the model/actress boyfriend and girlfriend. Aw. Too bad.

An alarming little tidbit: Donny's hometown is where my grandparents were born and raised, it's a really, really small coal mining town in Pennsylvania. My mom grew up there, too. I hope that way back in the gene pool that Donny and I are not related. Because, ew.
I have stood here before inside the pouring rain
I'm stuck at work because there is a HUGE rainstorm and I don't want to get soaked, so I thought I would bring you a little something special.


Both of these quotes are brought to you by my sister-in-law's sketchy-ass boyfriend, whom I met for the first time as he was driving me to the hospital.

"I tried that shit once. But the rope was too short. I had a fucking red mark on my neck for four days and shit!"
-Sister-in-law's sketchy-ass boyfriend, on the topic of suicide.

"It looked like four hamburger patties and shit."
-Sister-in-law's sketchy-ass boyfriend, on the topic of the consistency of his vomit from a night of drinking/taking prescription pills

As you may be able to glean from these pearls of wisdom, I was not too impressed with my SIL's choice of men...
A bit of history
This is where I live. This article appeared in yesterday's Plain Dealer. Who knew? I certainly didn't. Owen and I joked that Dom is probably possessed by the spirit of the cougar. Ya never know.

Sunday, June 13

Do not adjust your screen
I've come over to the dark side and done the whole layout redo thing. I'm hoping the links still work, because I actually had the foresight to copy them into a Word document and then past them back into the template. The only thing I'm sad about is losing my haloscan comments, but, oh well.

Hope y'all like the new look of the Sketch Factor!

Friday, June 11

Testing, testing, 100... 93 ...
This morning I had electrodes on my face and was attempting to name three rivers while the room was spinning.

That's the short of it. The long of it was this: I had my ENG test, it lasted about an hour, and was the strangest hour I've spent in a long time.

The first section of the test, after the electrodes were applied around my eyes and on my forehead, was for me to watch a red dot on a light screen. The dot would move from left to right and up and down and then randomly and I just had to follow it with my eyes. Piece of cake.

The second test involved me sitting up and having to lay down really fast and turn my head. My eye movements were monitored. I got really dizzy doing this part of the test.

The third part of the test was that the technician put this thing in my ear that blew air into it. It lasted a minute, and during this time I had my eyes closed and I felt like I was going to roll off the table and that the room was going to turn on its side. Then when the air stops, the technician asked me a bunch of questions, mainly to take my mind off the dizziness. They were questions that I couldn't easily answer when not dizzy, let alone when I'm trying to stop the room from spinning. I'll share the questions with you so you can understand:

-Tell me three girls' names that start with the letter R.
(My answers: Rebecca, Rachel, Rhonda)

-Name three rivers.
(My answers: Cuyahoga (that's the one here in Cleveland), Mississippi, and after a long deliberation, I came up with De Nile)

-Count backwards from 100 by 3's.
(Oy vey. This was a challenge for me.)

-Name three states that start with the letter M.
(My answers: Michigan, Minnesota, Montana)

-Three boys names that start with the letter D.
(My answers: Dan, Dave, Don)

-Three baseball teams.
(Indians, Reds, Tigers)

-Count backwards from 100 by 7's.
(More extreme difficulty on my part)

-Three flowers.
(Me: daisy, marigold, rose)

Then I was allowed to leave. I was glad to have a ride home, because man, I'm still not right. I feel dizzy but a different kind of dizzy than what had originally been bothering me. Now I just have to wait a week for the results. I guess a neurologist reads the eye movements and sends them to my doctor.

Very strange. I hope they figure something out!

Thursday, June 10

What's that sucking sound?
That would be me, with my lips puckered to kiss some ass. My boss' birthday is tomorrow. However, due to the fact that I may be incapacitated tomorrow (with the hospital test and stuff), I brought in an early birthday treat. I baked cupcakes. Aren't I such a little suckup? I must admit they are pretty tasty. Duncan Hines out of the box, baby. Chocolate with chocolate fudge frosting. Atkins hostile, high calorie, high carb, high sugar, pure crap. But yummy.

Wednesday, June 9

First jobs
On directive from Tracie, I am going to enlighten you about my first job. Sure, I babysat from time to time, but the first true job I had was as a busboy, erm, girl, at a Japanese restaurant. I started working there because my two closest friends worked there, and because I needed some extra cash. This was when I was about 16 or 17.

I don't really have a cool story about it, but I did have to clean the sushi bar every night, which was ghastly. I loathe fish, let alone raw fish, and the smell alone almost did me in. Every time I cleaned the sushi bar, the sushi chef (or whatever you call him) would watch me disapprovingly before he would finally step in and say, "No good!" and then take over cleaning duty. Not that I complained. I tried to do "no good!" so I would get to leave.

We also could eat as much white rice and ice cream as we wanted.

I think my pay was at minimum wage, maybe a little higher, who knows. That was about 12 years ago, I think the minimum wage was about $4.75. I remember getting a $200 check and thinking, "WOW!"

My next job was something I snagged from the woman whom I regularly babysat for. She worked at the Dillard's department store as a buyer (I think.) They were having a Father's Day promotion wherein you could pay $10 or $20 and you could shoot a video with a Father's Day message. I landed the job as the camera operator. This job entailed sitting around the men's department all day, waiting for customers who had paid for the video (there weren't many). But I did happen to see a shoplifter try and stuff a ton of Tommy Hilfiger sweaters under his shirt and run for the door. He just grabbed a ton of folded sweaters and ran with them. So I had to go get someone and the police came and got a description from me. It was quite exciting.

So there you go. My first jobs.

Tuesday, June 8

La la la la la la
Did I mention that I'm getting my hair colored and highlighted tonight? It's step one of looking good for the 10 year reunion. (T minus 11 days! Not that I'm anxious about it or anything.)
Specialty Instructor
Reading Teem's journal about a t-shirt that says "Objects Under Shirt Are Larger Than They Appear", reminded me of an embarrassing little anecdote from my past.

When I was a freshman in college, I began to enjoy wearing random t-shirts usually purchased at thrift stores. Most had funny sayings that made no sense except to the original creator of the shirt (example: "I saw the governor but where was the shrimp?"). Once, I purchased a t-shirt that looked like a typical lifeguard t-shirt, white with red letters and a sketch of two people in scuba gear. It said "specialty instructor." I thought it was just a funny shirt to wear, and so I wore it out several times, including to class.

After several times of wearing the shirt, I took it out of the laundry basket one day to hang it in my closet, when I realized that the two scuba divers were in a, shall we say, suggestive numeric position. It seems this was an entirely different specialty altogether.

Needless to say I never wore the shirt again. But god only knows how many guys saw the shirt and thought, hey, I should get that chick's phone number. OK, probably not too many.
And a "howdy" to the person who visited by putting in this puzzling equation:
I'd just like to extend a warm welcome to those of you who ended up here by accident today. (Maybe that's all of you.)

For instance, you, anonymous person, who wanted some crucial information and searched google for "did julie from the inferno pee on coral's bed" (now I want to know, too!). Let me know what you find out about that.

And you, who wanted a sexy sketch. Sorry. Can't help ya. Nor can I help you if you wanted a sketch of the Olive Garden. I mean, I could try, but I assure you it's not what you're looking for.

With that out of the way, I must tell you that, rather unfortunately, I was sucked in to the show "For Love or Money" last night. I'm not typically in to these dating shows with the catty women and dopey guys. But this one, with its twist that the girls could be playing either for $1 million or $1, makes it somewhat interesting. Or at least, interesting enough for me to follow until something better (read: BB5 and TAR) comes along.

Monday, June 7

Hasslehoff update

This would explain a lot re: Hassle the Hoff. Am I timely, or what?
This ad space for sale
I am just freaking sick to death of product placement within my food. First Shrek was in the Skittles, now Garfield is in the Goldfish. I opened my little bag o' goldfish, only to discover that among the fishies are these blobs, allegedly in the shape of Garfield the cat (which, who even reads that comic strip anymore? Why would they make it into a movie. What's next, the Cathy movie? Marmaduke? Fox Trot? Funky Winkerbean? Someone, somewhere, is working on the script. I just know it.)

Do not mess with my delicious, cheddar cheese snacks. That is all.
Just Thought You Should Know

Read below for the most frightening news since Richard Marx...

Ice-T And David Hasselhoff Team Up For Rap Album
'Baywatch' Star To Reinvent Himself As 'Hassle The Hoff'
Rick Ellis

POSTED: 4:21 pm CDT May 21, 2004
UPDATED: 12:55 pm CDT June 4, 2004

David Hasselhoff, best known for starring in the television shows "Knight Rider" and "Baywatch," may be looking to release a rap album.

According to several press reports, legendary rapper Ice-T is set to produce a hip-hop album with Hasselhoff, whom the musician described as "a legend."

Ice-T told the British newspaper The Sun that he and Hasselhoff are neighbors, and they have struck up a friendship. "He's gonna come out as Hassle the Hoff," said the rapper, whose real name is Tracey Morrow. "The Hoff will surprise people with his rap skills and humor."

This isn't Hasselhoff's first stab at a music career. Since the late 1980s, he has released a number of albums. While most haven't been released in the United States, they have sold well in Austria and Germany. They have sold so well, in fact, that the former star of "Knight Rider" once told German magazine TV Spielfilm he had helped reunite Germany by singing his song "Looking for Freedom" among millions of German fans at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin.

"I find it a bit sad that there is no photo of me hanging on the walls in the Berlin Museum at Check-Point Charlie," Hasselhoff said.
Copyright 2004 by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Friday, June 4

Thank you, Gary, for that info. I don't know if that's what I have, but it sure sounds like it. Meanwhile, the doctor gave me Valium (bo-nus!) and a water pill to try and draw out whatever fluid or whatever yucky stuff is in my inner ear. I also have to get an ENG done which apparently is some sort of test to determine whether the problem is a simple inner ear infection or if it has to do with the nervous system. Great! Because that doesn't freak me out.

I wish I could give you all a visual of my ENT doctor. He was this jolly old bald man, with a HUGE gut. And he wore one of those old-school doctor headbands with the reflector eyepiece thing flipped up. Hilarious. He gave me this detailed explanation of the anatomy of the inner ear (which went in one ear and out the other, no pun intended) and looked in my eyes with some sort of tool and said that my right eye was in constant movement whereas my left was not. Which said to him that, duh, the problem is in the right ear, but also, despite my feeling better, the dizziness is still present. It may be that I've grown accustomed to it but it is still there.

Soooooo... next Friday I get this ENG test. Must read up on it. But in the meantime... valium. I don't know why I got that. Something about how it works in tandem with the water pill. I dunno.
Getting to the bottom of things
Today I finally go to the ENT. I'm not even really dizzy anymore, just every once in a while when I turn my head quickly. But nothing like it was before. So they probably won't find anything.

It will make my work day end early, which is nice. Have you ever noticed that when you know you are leaving work early, the day drags even longer? Or, if I come late due to an early morning doctor's appointment, that too makes the day drag. I don't know why that is. Pretty much everything makes the day drag for me, though. Thank the good lord for the Internet!

Thursday, June 3

If you Blogline subscribers get a bunch of notices that I am updating, it's because I am deleting old posts in a fit of paranoia and it publishes every time.

If you are the person who has been on my site all day, please identify yourself so I can sleep tonight.

Free GreenTuna. Don't let her evil twin take her identity. What would life be without GT and Tiny? I mean, LimeTuna doesn't have the same ring. PeriwinkleTuna just doesn't do it.
I've been feeling horribly embarrassed ever since the e-mail debacle occurred, and finally, today, I wrote an apology letter. Just for peace of mind. Even though it wasn't me who wrote the e-mail, I still feel partially involved in the whole thing and want to make sure that things are right between myself and the person who was the unfortunate recipient of the e-mail.

Also I am trying to distance myself a bit from the person who wrote the e-mail but that is extremely difficult. Things are definitely different now. I feel bad for her but I feel in order to save myself I should probably not be linked closely with her, and thus, her reputation. Is that harsh? Or is that just business? I don't know.

On a slightly related but tangential topic, if anyone has any experience with Monster, please let me know. I posted my rez on there and have been getting responses daily, but I don't know if they are legit or not. They seem kinda... I dunno... sketchy.
Those endless summer 90's comeback attempts, or, Repeat Offender
Move over, Nelson. There's another major 90's artist trying to make a comeback in the music scene. Think power ballads, feathered hair, too-tight jeans, and you get... that's right, Richard Marx. Not one, but TWO local stations were promoting his new single this morning. Be afraid, be very afraid.

Wednesday, June 2

I stole this idea from Mandy, it's a fun list of books that people keep adding to. I have read a lot of these, and a majority I've never heard of nor do I want to read, but it was fun all the same. I feel kinda, sorta smart now.

That Book Meme

*bold those you've read
*italicise started-but-never-finished
*underline those you own but haven't gotten to yet

*add three of your own
*post to your journal

1. The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien
2. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
3. His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman
4. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling
6. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee

7. Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne
8. 1984, George Orwell
9. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis
10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
11. Catch-22, Joseph Heller
12. Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte

13. Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
14. Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
15. The Catcher in the Rye, JD Salinger

16. The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
17. Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
18. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott

19. Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres
20. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
21. Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
22. Harry Potter And The Sorcerer's Philosopher's Stone, JK Rowling
23. Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling
24. Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling

25. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
26. Tess Of The D'Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
27. Middlemarch, George Eliot
28. A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving
29. The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck
30. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
31. The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
32. One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
33. The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
34. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
35. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl 36. Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
37. A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
38. Persuasion, Jane Austen
39. Dune, Frank Herbert
40. Emma, Jane Austen
41. Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery

42. Watership Down, Richard Adams
43. The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
44. The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
45. Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
46. Animal Farm, George Orwell
47. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens

48. Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
49. Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
50. The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher
51. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
52. Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck

53. The Stand, Stephen King
54. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
55. A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
56. The BFG, Roald Dahl
57. Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome
58. Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
59. Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
60. Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
61. Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
62. Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden
63. A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
64. The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
65. Mort, Terry Pratchett
66. The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton
67. The Magus, John Fowles
68. Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
69. Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett
70. Lord Of The Flies, William Golding
71. Perfume, Patrick Susskind
72. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
73. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett
74. Matilda, Roald Dahl
75. Bridget Jones's Diary, Helen Fielding
76. The Secret History, Donna Tartt
77. The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins
78. Ulysses, James Joyce
79. Bleak House, Charles Dickens
80. Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson
81. The Twits, Roald Dahl
82. I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith
83. Holes, Louis Sachar
84. Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake
85. The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy
86. Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson
87. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
88. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
89. Magician, Raymond E Feist
90. On The Road, Jack Kerouac
91. The Godfather, Mario Puzo
92. The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
93. The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett
94. The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
95. Katherine, Anya Seton
96. Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer
97. Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
98. Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson
99. The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot
100. Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie
101. Three Men In A Boat, Jerome K. Jerome
102. Small Gods, Terry Pratchett
103. The Beach, Alex Garland
104. Dracula, Bram Stoker
105. Point Blanc, Anthony Horowitz
106. The Pickwick Papers, Charles Dickens
107. Stormbreaker, Anthony Horowitz
108. The Wasp Factory, Iain Banks
109. The Day Of The Jackal, Frederick Forsyth
110. The Illustrated Mum, Jacqueline Wilson
111. Jude The Obscure, Thomas Hardy
112. The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13 1/2, Sue Townsend
113. The Cruel Sea, Nicholas Monsarrat
114. Les Miserables, Victor Hugo
115. The Mayor Of Casterbridge, Thomas Hardy
116. The Dare Game, Jacqueline Wilson
117. Bad Girls, Jacqueline Wilson
118. The Picture Of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
119. Shogun, James Clavell
120. The Day Of The Triffids, John Wyndham
121. Lola Rose, Jacqueline Wilson
122. Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
123. The Forsyte Saga, John Galsworthy
124. House Of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski
125. The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver
126. Reaper Man, Terry Pratchett
127. Angus, Thongs And Full-Frontal Snogging, Louise Rennison
128. The Hound Of The Baskervilles, Arthur Conan Doyle
129. Possession, A. S. Byatt
130. The Master And Margarita, Mikhail Bulgakov
131. The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood
132. Danny The Champion Of The World, Roald Dahl
133. East Of Eden, John Steinbeck
134. George's Marvellous Medicine, Roald Dahl
135. Wyrd Sisters, Terry Pratchett
136. The Color Purple, Alice Walker
137. Hogfather, Terry Pratchett
138. The Thirty-Nine Steps, John Buchan
139. Girls In Tears, Jacqueline Wilson
140. Sleepovers, Jacqueline Wilson
141. All Quiet On The Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque
142. Behind The Scenes At The Museum, Kate Atkinson
143. High Fidelity, Nick Hornby
144. It, Stephen King
145. James And The Giant Peach, Roald Dahl

146. The Green Mile, Stephen King
147. Papillon, Henri Charriere
148. Men At Arms, Terry Pratchett
149. Master And Commander, Patrick O'Brian
150. Skeleton Key, Anthony Horowitz
151. Soul Music, Terry Pratchett
152. Thief Of Time, Terry Pratchett
153. The Fifth Elephant, Terry Pratchett
154. Atonement, Ian McEwan
155. Secrets, Jacqueline Wilson
156. The Silver Sword, Ian Serraillier
157. One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Ken Kesey
158. Heart Of Darkness, Joseph Conrad
159. Kim, Rudyard Kipling
160. Cross Stitch, Diana Gabaldon
161. Moby Dick, Herman Melville
162. River God, Wilbur Smith
163. Sunset Song, Lewis Grassic Gibbon
164. The Shipping News, Annie Proulx
165. The World According To Garp, John Irving
166. Lorna Doone, R. D. Blackmore
167. Girls Out Late, Jacqueline Wilson
168. The Far Pavilions, M. M. Kaye
169. The Witches, Roald Dahl
170. Charlotte's Web, E. B. White
171. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
172. They Used To Play On Grass, Terry Venables and Gordon Williams
173. The Old Man And The Sea, Ernest Hemingway
174. The Name Of The Rose, Umberto Eco
175. Sophie's World, Jostein Gaarder
176. Dustbin Baby, Jacqueline Wilson
177. Fantastic Mr. Fox, Roald Dahl
178. Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
179. Jonathan Livingstone Seagull, Richard Bach
180. The Little Prince, Antoine De Saint-Exupery
181. The Suitcase Kid, Jacqueline Wilson
182. Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens
183. The Power Of One, Bryce Courtenay
184. Silas Marner, George Eliot
185. American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis
186. The Diary Of A Nobody, George and Weedon Gross-mith
187. Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh
188. Goosebumps, R. L. Stine
189. Heidi, Johanna Spyri
190. Sons And Lovers, D. H. Lawrence
191. The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera
192. Man And Boy, Tony Parsons
193. The Truth, Terry Pratchett
194. The War Of The Worlds, H. G. Wells
195. The Horse Whisperer, Nicholas Evans
196. A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry
197. Witches Abroad, Terry Pratchett
198. The Once And Future King, T. H. White
199. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle
200. Flowers In The Attic, Virginia Andrews
201. The Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien
202. The Eye of the World, Robert Jordan
203. The Great Hunt, Robert Jordan
204. The Dragon Reborn, Robert Jordan
205. Fires of Heaven, Robert Jordan
206. Lord of Chaos, Robert Jordan
207. Winter's Heart, Robert Jordan
208. A Crown of Swords, Robert Jordan
209. Crossroads of Twilight, Robert Jordan
210. A Path of Daggers, Robert Jordan
211. As Nature Made Him, John Colapinto
212. Microserfs, Douglas Coupland
213. The Married Man, Edmund White
214. Winter's Tale, Mark Helprin
215. The History of Sexuality, Michel Foucault
216. Cry to Heaven, Anne Rice
217. Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe, John Boswell
218. Equus, Peter Shaffer
219. The Man Who Ate Everything, Jeffrey Steingarten
220. Letters To A Young Poet, Rainer Maria Rilke
221. Ella Minnow Pea, Mark Dunn
222. The Vampire Lestat, Anne Rice
223. Anthem, Ayn Rand
224. The Bridge To Terabithia, Katherine Paterson
225. Tartuffe, Moliere
226. The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka
227. The Crucible, Arthur Miller
228. The Trial, Franz Kafka
229. Oedipus Rex, Sophocles
230. Oedipus at Colonus, Sophocles

231. Death Be Not Proud, John Gunther
232. A Doll's House, Henrik Ibsen
233. Hedda Gabler, Henrik Ibsen

234. Ethan Frome, Edith Wharton
235. A Raisin In The Sun, Lorraine Hansberry
236. ALIVE!, Piers Paul Read
237. Grapefruit, Yoko Ono
238. Trickster Makes This World, Lewis Hyde
240. The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
241. Chronicles of Thomas Convenant, Unbeliever, Stephen Donaldson
242. Lord of Light, Roger Zelazny
242. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Michael Chabon
243. Summerland, Michael Chabon
244. A Confederacy of Dunces, John Kennedy Toole
245. Candide, Voltaire
246. The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More, Roald Dahl
247. Ringworld, Larry Niven
248. The King Must Die, Mary Renault
249. Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert Heinlein
250. A Wrinkle in Time, Madeline L'Engle
251. The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde
252. The House Of The Seven Gables, Nathaniel Hawthorne
253. The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne
254. The Joy Luck Club, Amy Tan
255. The Great Gilly Hopkins, Katherine Paterson
256. Chocolate Fever, Robert Kimmel Smith
257. Xanth: The Quest for Magic, Piers Anthony
258. The Lost Princess of Oz, L. Frank Baum
259. Wonder Boys, Michael Chabon
260. Lost In A Good Book, Jasper Fforde
261. Well Of Lost Plots, Jasper Fforde
261. Life Of Pi, Yann Martel
263. The Bean Trees, Barbara Kingsolver
264. A Yellow Rraft In Blue Water, Michael Dorris
265. Little House on the Prairie, Laura Ingalls Wilder
267. Where The Red Fern Grows, Wilson Rawls
268. Griffin & Sabine, Nick Bantock
269. Witch of Black Bird Pond, Joyce Friedland
270. Mrs. Frisby And The Rats Of NIMH, Robert C. O'Brien
271. Tuck Everlasting, Natalie Babbitt
272. The Cay, Theodore Taylor
273. From The Mixed-Up Files Of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, E.L. Konigsburg
274. The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Jester
275. The Westing Game, Ellen Raskin
276. The Kitchen God's Wife, Amy Tan
277. The Bone Setter's Daughter, Amy Tan
278. Relic, Duglas Preston & Lincolon Child
279. Wicked, Gregory Maguire
280. American Gods, Neil Gaiman
281. Misty of Chincoteague, Marguerite Henry
282. The Girl Next Door, Jack Ketchum
283. Haunted, Judith St. George
284. Singularity, William Sleator
285. A Short History of Nearly Everything, Bill Bryson
286. Different Seasons, Stephen King
287. Fight Club, Chuck Palahniuk
288. About a Boy, Nick Hornby
289. The Bookman's Wake, John Dunning
290. The Church of Dead Girls, Stephen Dobyns
291. Illusions, Richard Bach
292. Magic's Pawn, Mercedes Lackey
293. Magic's Promise, Mercedes Lackey
294. Magic's Price, Mercedes Lackey
295. The Dancing Wu Li Masters, Gary Zukav
296. Spirits of Flux and Anchor, Jack L. Chalker
297. Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
298. The Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices, Brenda Love
299. Infinite Jest, David Foster Wallace
300. The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison
301. The Cider House Rules, John Irving
302. Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card
303. Girlfriend in a Coma, Douglas Coupland
304. The Lion's Game, Nelson Demille
305. The Sun, The Moon, and the Stars, Stephen Brust
306. Cyteen, C. J. Cherryh
307. Foucault's Pendulum, Umberto Eco
308. Cryptonomicon, Neal Stephenson
309. Invisible Monsters, Chuck Palahniuk
310. Camber of Culdi, Kathryn Kurtz
311. The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand
312. War and Rememberance, Herman Wouk
313. The Art of War, Sun Tzu
314. The Giver, Lois Lowry
315. The Telling, Ursula Le Guin
316. Xenogenesis (or Lilith's Brood), Octavia Butler (Dawn, Adulthood Rites,
317. A Civil Campaign, Lois McMaster Bujold
318. The Curse of Chalion, Lois McMaster Bujold
319. The Aeneid, Publius Vergilius Maro (Vergil)
320. Hanta Yo, Ruth Beebe Hill
321. The Princess Bride, S. Morganstern (or William Goldman)
322. Beowulf, Anonymous
323. The Sparrow, Maria Doria Russell
324. Deerskin, Robin McKinley
325. Dragonsong, Anne McCaffrey
326. Passage, Connie Willis
327. Otherland, Tad Williams
328. Tigana, Guy Gavriel Kay
329. Number the Stars, Lois Lowry
330. Beloved, Toni Morrison
331. Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal, Christopher Moore
332. The mysterious disappearance of Leon, I mean Noel, Ellen Raskin
333. Summer Sisters, Judy Blume
334. The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo
335. The Island on Bird Street, Uri Orlev
336. Midnight in the Dollhouse, Marjorie Filley Stover
337. The Miracle Worker, William Gibson
338. The Genesis Code, John Case
339. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Robert Louis Stevensen
340. Paradise Lost, John Milton
341. Phantom, Susan Kay
342. The Mummy or Ramses the Damned, Anne Rice
343. Anno Dracula, Kim Newman
344: The Dresden Files: Grave Peril, Jim Butcher
345: Tokyo Suckerpunch, Issac Adamson
346: The Winter of Magic's Return, Pamela Service
347: The Oddkins, Dean R. Koontz
348. My Name is Asher Lev, Chaim Potok
349. The Last Goodbye, Raymond Chandler
350. At Swim, Two Boys, Jaime O'Neill
351. Othello, by William Shakespeare
352. The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas
353. The Collected Poems of William Butler Yeats
354. Sati, Christopher Pike
355. The Inferno, Dante
356. The Apology, Plato
357. The Small Rain, Madeline L'Engle
358. The Man Who Tasted Shapes, Richard E Cytowick
359. 5 Novels, Daniel Pinkwater
360. The Sevenwaters Trilogy, Juliet Marillier
361. Girl with a Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier
362. To the Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf
363. Our Town, Thorton Wilder
364. Green Grass Running Water, Thomas King
335. The Interpreter, Suzanne Glass
336. The Moor's Last Sigh, Salman Rushdie
337. The Mother Tongue, Bill Bryson
338. A Passage to India, E.M. Forster
339. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky
340. The Phantom of the Opera, Gaston Leroux
341. Pages for You, Sylvia Brownrigg
342. The Changeover, Margaret Mahy
343. Howl's Moving Castle, Diana Wynne Jones
344. Angels and Demons, Dan Brown
345. Johnny Got His Gun, Dalton Trumbo
346. Shosha, Isaac Bashevis Singer
347. Travels With Charley, John Steinbeck
348. The Diving-bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby
349. The Lunatic at Large by J. Storer Clouston
350. Time for bed by David Baddiel
351. Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold
352. Quite Ugly One Morning by Christopher Brookmyre
353. The Bloody Sun by Marion Zimmer Bradley
354. Sewer, Gas, and Eletric by Matt Ruff
355. Jhereg by Steven Brust
356. So You Want To Be A Wizard by Diane Duane
357. Perdido Street Station, China Mieville
358. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, Anne Bronte
359. Road-side Dog, Czeslaw Milosz
360. The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje
361. Neuromancer, William Gibson
362. The Epistemology of the Closet, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick
363. A Canticle for Liebowitz, Walter M. Miller, Jr
364. The Mask of Apollo, Mary Renault
365. The Gunslinger, Stephen King
366. Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare
367. Absalom, Absalom, William Faulkner
368. The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway
369. Dreamhouse, Alison Habens
370. Hyperion, by Dan Simmons
371. Prospero's Children, Jan Siegel
372. Gaudy Night, Dorothy Sayers
373. Guns, Germs, and Steel, Jared Diamond
374. Enchantment, Orson Scott Card
375. Cetaganda, Lois McMaster Bujold
376. Beauty, Sheri S. Tepper
377. The Hour of the Star, Clarice Lispector
378. The Patron Saint of Liars, Ann Patchett
379. Sexing the Cherry, Jeanette Winterson.
380. A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula Le'Guin
381. Assassin's Apprentice, Robin Hobb
382. The Axis Trilogy, Sara Douglass
383. Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie
384. Sabriel, Garth Nix
385. Maurice, E.M. Forster
386. Into Thin Air, Jon Krakauer
387. The Wild Swans, by Peg Kerr
388. The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger
389. Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides
390. Welcome to the Monkey House, by Kurt Vonnegut
391. The Stranger, by Albert Camus
392. Angry Candy, by Harlan Ellison
393. Snow Crash - Neal Stephenson
394. Motherless Brooklyn - Jonathan Lethem
395. The Brains of Rats - Michael Blumlein
396. Agent of Change – Steve Miller and Sharon Lee
397. The Diary of Anais Nin, Volume One
398. The Swiss Family Robinson – Johann Wyss
399. Island of the Blue Dolphins, Scott O’Dell
400. North and South, John Jakes
401. Watchers, Dean Koontz
402. Death du Jour, Kathy Reichs
403. A Is for Alibi, Sue Grafton
404. Postmortem, Patricia Cornwell
405. Nevernever - Will Shetterly
406. Street Boys - Lorenzo Carcaterra
407. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
408. House of Sand and Fog - Andre Dubus III
409. I Know This Much is True - Wally Lamb
410. The Kitchen Boy - Robert Alexander
Nothing of import...
I'm in one of those slumps where there's not much to say at the moment. However, my "to do" list at work is down to 5 things. This is an all-time low. The last time it was this low was maybe 5 years ago when I first started working here and was a peon. Man, I miss those days. I could get a good night's sleep and not wake up in a cold sweat.

Oh, by the way, the ENTIRE company knows about the e-mail thing now.

Bad Lady is out the rest of the week. When asked if she was going out of town (she never volunteers this information), she said she "had stuff" to do. That's as much as we got, and that was after prying. And, like the responsible coworker she is, she left us no note of what she was working on, who could possibly call, you know, the standard stuff you do before you leave. So all morning long we've been scrambling to figure out what's going on with her stuff. I mean, it's just three days, but whatever.

Tuesday, June 1

The answer: 477.
The question: How many Skittles must one eat before one becomes physically repulsed at oneself?
Seven days
Last night, for reasons I still don't understand, my husband and I decided to watch the movie "The Ring." I think it was sparked by a conversation we'd had with some friends Sunday night about the scariest moments in movies. Mine, just as an aside, occurs in "The Exorcist" when the girl sees a flash of the demon who is possessing her. It's one of those "blink and you miss it" moments. But if you have a VCR/DVD and pause it, you can see the horrifying face that comes on screen. It wouldn't be scary if it wasn't completely unexpected. But up to that point in the movie there hasn't been anything hugely scary like that, so you let your guard down.

Anyway, our friends told us that "The Ring" was scary, and lord knows why, but we decided to see if they were right.

I'd have to say that it was definitely creepy. But it was one of those movies that you know exactly when something freaky is going to happen, because they change the music, or they build the tension until you know something is coming.

And they can't let the viewer make his or her own assumptions. For instance, early on in the film, we see the disturbing home video that apparently is responsible for four teens' deaths. People who view the movie die in seven days. The video contains strange, juxtaposed images, for instance, a woman looking in a mirror, dead horses, a window where someone is looking out, a lighthouse scene, a ladder. A few minutes later, our protagonist, who has seen the video and is now under this seven day curse, walks past a ladder propped up at an identical angle to the one in the video. Any idiot could have made the connection, but instead, they have to cut back to the scene in the video of the ladder. Like, LOOK! THERE IS A CONNECTION HERE! DO YOU SEE? HUH? HUH?

I know that when viewing a movie such as "The Ring," one is not supposed to ponder the logic after the film is over. It's actually an interesting premise, and I think they could have done a lot more with it than they did. For instance, I want to know more about the Morgans, the family around which the curse seems to have originated. I think that a few more people should have mysteriously died.

Nothing spectacular, but after it was over, it stayed with me in a "sleep with the lights on" kind of way.
It finally happened
Saturday morning, I woke up and stumbled into the kitchen, only to find a dirty pair of my undies strewn on the kitchen floor. Seems we forgot to close up the scary basement for the night and Dom just needed to fish out a souvenir. That cat has some serious issues. This morning he had brought up one of his toys, a canvas tunnel that is easily twice his size, from the rec room area of the basement. Desperate times call for desperate measures.