Thursday, January 29, 2009


I just read today's headlines and I'll be honest - I'm a little depressed. Misery loves company so guess're all invited to my pity party.

The Iraqi Shoe Thrower got a monument in his honor today in Tikrit. I find it slightly interesting that were it not for "George W. Bush's War" this journalist would have never had the freedom to show such disrespect to another individual in public. While this journalist isn't exactly "in the clear" in terms of punishment, he's being hailed as a bit of a hero among Iraqi's.

Meanwhile, our heroes have a suicide rate that is at a 30-year high. News Flash: These men and women do not have an easy job. Yet they do it anyway.

Speaking of suicide, apparently it's all the rage these days among the unemployed and even those who just recently got their jobs back. I understand that times are tough and families feel like they are at the end of their rope however I'm really having a hard time with this. Maybe it's because my own family has lived through some very dark financial days, but that's just it - we lived through them. We made it. It wasn't easy, but good grief, we had each other which is worth more than anything else on this earth.

And just when you think that things can't possibly get any worse, it has been reported that Jessica Simpson is getting fat. At least things are looking up for some folks. (sorry...I was becoming far too much of a Debbie Downer...I had to lighten up just a bit)

Times are tough. Obviously. It's getting crazier. Obviously. It could get much worse. Realistically. I could say things like "time ain't gonna' stand much longer" and all of those other Doomsday type predictions, but would that really be helping the situation any? Nope - not one little bit. So I'm just going to be thankful for what I have. And try to be patient with others as I don't know what they are experiencing right now. And pray. We've got to just to make it today.

Monday, January 26, 2009

"How Much Does It Cost?"

Whoever said "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas" obviously was not a blogger. This weekend I went to the fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada with my friend, Jim. I haven't seen him in well over a year since he up and moved across the country to live in the Pacific Northwest. Personally I'm still trying to figure out what the Pacific NW has that Northeast Georgia doesn't have. Other than Mt. Rainier...or the San Juan Islands...or mild summers...or a bakery with awesome peach scones.
What a fun time we had in the Entertainment Capital of the World! Our first stop was Big Elvis at Wild Bill's Gambling Hall and Saloon. Honestly I think that he really is The King who is alive and well, but now he's simply operating under the guise of "Big Elvis" because he has an affinity for donuts.
Friday evening we went to see my long-lost brother over at the Luxor...
While there, we rubbed elbows with a famous rockstar... Ok, we didn't really rub elbows, but we did sit on the same row that he and his posse did. That's got to mean something, right? If any of my three readers out there can correctly identify said famous rockstar above, then I'll send you a prize.

Now, I'll be honest. I'm not much of a gambler. And by Saturday afternoon, I was receiving more confirmation that I should not become one anytime soon. (It took me losing $5 whole dollars in a slot machine to make this decision.) And whoever said that Vegas is cheap obviously never had to use the facilities at this place...
(I know...totally inappropriate but sometimes I just can't help but crack myself up.)
But I wasn't really in Vegas to win big. I was there for the atmosphere. Who knew that we would encounter a Chinese New Year Parade in the Venetian of all places...
Bad news about that chandelier. I just love walking through all of the casinos and seeing the details that are put into each one...
They are so big and ornate. Well, except for this casino...
Yes, it's got big and ornate too, but nothing that I am willing to feature on my PG rated blog. Let's just say that "PH" should stand for "promiscuous hot-little-numbers". It wasn't all bad there. But more about that in a moment.

Ok, Ok...the real reason why I went to Vegas was to show my support for Jim when he was crowned...
Don't even get me started on the fact that A.C. Slater was in the same town that I was on Saturday night. It's too much for me to handle. But probably not as much as it was for Jim to know that there were 51 (um...don't forget Miss District of Columbia) beauty pageant queens in the same town as he was.
Early Saturday evening, we went back to the Venetian to see Phantom. Loved it. Loved it. Loved it. It's Vegas' take on Phantom of the Opera and to me it was just as good as the full musical. Have I mentioned that I'm a sucker for musicals? After Phantom was over, we headed North on the Deuce to "Old Vegas". Otherwise known as Fremont Street.
It was here that we got to see a "musical" that was probably a little more Jim's style. A tribute to KISS. We had to wait awhile for the tribute, but there was plenty of entertainment on Fremont Street to keep us occupied...
After Sassy Granny stopped dancing, I felt like trying my luck again at the slots (Because apparently losing 5 dollars just wasn't enough for me). We were standing outside between the Four Queens and the Fremont Casino and were debating about which one to go play. Jim asked "Which is more Vegas?". I shrugged my shoulders in typical "I dunno" fashion and headed right towards the Fremont.
We walked around for a minute or so and finally I sat down on the very end of a row of 4 slot machines. These were the "big money" slots at $1. Feeling adventurous I put in a $20. I played a couple of times and lost. Then on about the third or so round, I won back up to $29 dollars. So I was happy and cashed out with my big 9 dollar earnings. Honestly I don't really remember what happened next. I think I was looking for the cashier's window to collect my loot when I turned back around towards the machines I was just at, but I was more focused on the one at the end of the row. It was the weirdest feeling. (I know it sounds absolutely absurd, but trust me on this one.) Jim said "You're feeling lucky. You've got to play it." So I sat down and reached for my wallet to pull out my money when he reminded me that I could play my voucher I had just gotten from the other machine. So I put it in and pressed the button and what happened next is still pretty surreal. Let's just say that a bell started ringing and the little message that popped up on the screen said something to the effect of "Call Attendant to Collect Winnings". Um. What?!? Jim realized before I did that I had essentially won as much in 10 seconds than I usually earn in a month. (For all of you blog stalkers out there who do not know me but are reading this anyway, please note that I work for the state of Georgia so it's not worth trying to track me down for my "fortune") This is what a state of total shock with a dash of jet-lag looks like...
So as the attendant is collecting all my information to ensure that Uncle Sam gets his payday, she asked me if I would like a t-shirt. To which I replied "How much does it cost?". It still makes me laugh to think I asked that question. Luckily for me it was free!
After the grand finale of Rock-N-Roll All Night, we headed back to the Stratosphere to watch old people beg for oxygen at the closed Oxygen Bar.
Can someone please explain to me what an oxygen bar is? Is it to restore lung health for all us non-smokers as we walk through the casinos? My inquiring mind wants to know. Just when you thought I could not have another word to say about Vegas, you're wrong. We spent most of the day on Sunday in Planet Hookerwood. Because now that I'm a high roller with money to burn, it's only natural for me to invest in some property on the Vegas Strip. Not really. But for letting them try to sell us something, we got free credits to play slots with. It was the easiest $43.25 I've ever earned. We had more time to kill in the area because our dinner (at one of those amazing and great Brazilian steakhouses where they bring out all of the different meats on big skewers...yes, I realize I sound like a growing 17 year-old boy as I type this) and show were both at Planet Hollywood on Sunday night. While we waited, we braved the elements (low 50's...I quickly forgot that I left 30 degree temperatures in Georgia) to watch a couple of fountain shows at the Belagio. I love fountain shows. I'm easily amused. Which means that watching Mesmerized was right up my alley! It was a hypnotist show which totally took me back to my college days when ol' Tom DeLuca would come to North Georgia. But this character was much much better. It was so funny. (see last sentence in previous paragraph)
Now I'm home and it's back to reality. I'll be at the bank if you need me.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

5 for 5

(And now I'm thinking Arby's.)

A few days ago, Ashley, tagged me in a fun picture game and I was saving this blog posting for just the right moment. It so happens that "the right moment" is when I am putting off writing my paper that I must turn in before I leave town tomorrow morning. So the deal is, I am supposed to post the 5th picture in my 5th folder, tell a story about the picture and then tag 5 friends to do the same. Fact: I don't believe in organizing my pictures into folders. Odd, right considering I'm one of the most Type A people you'll ever meet. Maybe this means I'm not so Type A after all. Whatever. So instead I'm just posting the 5th picture that I have saved in my documents on my work computer, and here it is...

Don't try this at home, kids! Way back in the day, I went with my friend Audrey to Steamboat Springs and this is at a buffalo ranch. Duh. Her family knows the family who works the ranch so we went out one evening for a rip-roaring good time of dominoes and spaghetti with (buffalo) meatballs. The buffalo in the picture is AnnaBelle and of course she has a story. She was a twin and apparently it's rare to have buffalo twins. Turns out, AnnaBelle was the runt so mama buffalo devoted her time to the healthier one, (it's nature people, no tears please) which means that AnnaBelle wouldn't have made it were it not for Roy the Rancher. He bottle fed her and raised her from a baby to a grown up. What are baby buffaloes called? Well, she was actually only a couple of years old in this picture. She grazes in the pasture with the other buffaloes, but all Roy has to do is whistle and call for her and she comes running over to the fence. I considered informing her that she isn't a dog but thought better of it when my fingers were at the mercy of her ginormous teeth.

So, I'm tagging the following folks to play along: Suzanna because I can't remember what she or Caroline looks like, Angel because with 3 baby girls she's got to have some good pictures, Donna because she said it herself that she has reached a blogging low in the lack of pictures, Jenny because maybe just maybe her 5th folder is her cake decorating folder and I can live vicariously through her mad icing skills, and Michele because she like myself has always got her camera ready.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A New Day Has Come

Please pardon the usage of a Celine Dion song title, but perhaps it's only fitting since she was in the A.T.L. this weekend. No, I didn't see her. I was busy in Dahlonega contributing to the betterment of society. Or something like that. I had so many things that I wanted to blog about, but just never got around to it. Like all the books I read over Christmas break: Marley and Me, The Longest Trip Home, Change of Heart (no, it's not a lame Danielle Steel's Jodi Picoult), A Thousand Splendid Suns, What the CEO Wants You to Know, and Born on a Blue Day. Or I could talk about how my dog is sick and isn't really getting better even when I think he's making progress. Ce' la vie. (Isn't that how that is spelled? I'm not French so I don't know). I have pictures to post of Allison's going away party and I had every intention of devoting an entire blog post to my partner, Allison. PARTNER IN CRIME, people....what are you thinking? I sure will miss working with her. She's moved on to bluer skies and oranger pastures though at Auburn. I could talk about the trip that I'm going on this weekend. But then that just makes me remember how I need to pack and I'll be honest, I don't have time for that between work and school. Oh, have I mentioned that I'm back in school? Hence the reason for my absence in the blogosphere. I'm trying a new approach by actually completing all of my assigned reading assignments. Oddly enough, I'm actually learning from it too. Bizarre. Back to the topic at hand...

Today was the presidential inauguration. And that means a new day has come. Regardless of who is elected into office, I do enjoy watching all the hoorah of the day in Washington. I just love watching the politics of politics...all the hand-shaking and cheek-kissing between the people who drag each other's names through the mud the other 364 days of the year. Of course I had flashbacks to the 8th grade when Clinton was inaugurated which kind of made me want to curl up into the fetal position and rock back and forth, but the part that stands out the most to me was sitting in Algebra class while Maya Angelou read some sort of forever long poem that she had written for the day. But today's not about 1993. Thank goodness for that because that would mean that I have years of bad hair to endure and I barely made it through the first time. It turns out that Obama and I have more in common than I thought. He has a daughter named Malia and my middle name is Melia. Different spellings but same pronunciations. And we (he and I) are both left-handed. I'm sure that once he learns of these commonalities between us, I'll receive an invitation to a fancy state dinner. I should probably start shopping for my dress now.

Monday, January 12, 2009

I'm far too frilly for man's work.

This evening on the way home from work, I discovered that not one, but both of my headlights were out. I was well aware of the one that took the brunt of the deer a couple of months ago because it now goes out at the drop of a hat. Or rain. Whatever. And yes, I was just too busy over the break doing nothing to get it repaired. It's not that I've been totally neglecting the task of replacing the headlight though...for at least the past week I've been driving around with a replacement bulb in my console. This way in the event that I was pulled over by one of Georgia's best and brightest, I would smile sweetly, show the bulb and promise to get right home and change it. I had every intention of changing it this weekend actually but Saturday it was raining and Sunday it was windy. Neither of which were optimal weather conditions for light mechanic work.

Fact: I do know how to change a headlight. When the reality that I would not be a 22 year-old bride hit me, I determined that it was important that I learn how to do things that might otherwise be classified as "man's work." So I mowed the lawn. Once. Then I learned how to change a headlight. But really this knowledge falls into the same category that knowing where the emergency exits on an airplane are located - it's good information to have, but you don't ever expect to actually use it.

Today though I knew that I had come to end of my getting darker by the minute road and it was inevitable that I change the headlights. I mean, what if I had to rush Cash to the emergency vet in the middle of the night? (yes, I'm making fun of myself so it's ok for you to, too) After a quick visit with Manny, Moe, and Jack, I headed home and rushed upstairs to change clothes and get my trusty tools...
I wish I was making this up, but I'm not that creative. I should also mention that I got my dog too because his new favorite hobby is barking in his crate anytime he hears the slightest noise. The neighbors love me. So picture it: I'm outside in my apartment complex in my sweatshirt from 1998 and ratty sweatpants, dog on his leash around my wrist with the hood of my car up. I was torn between hoping that my cute British neighbor would drive up and offer to change the headlight for me and hoping that my cute British would not drive up and offer to change the headlight for me.
Obviously the latter happened or else my hands would have never encountered the abuse that is evident from this picture. I'll take dishpan hands any day over this business. Oh, for any of you skeptics out there I'm happy to report that my car now has two working headlights. For now anyway.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

And now for the completely prosaic explanation...

Remember the thrilling start to my week on Monday? Well, a few of you have been curious as to what happened. No, I do not work on a major fault line that shifted. As far as I know, leprechauns were not celebrating St. Patty's Day early. My puppy hasn't the foggiest idea where my office is located. The explanation is actually very anti-climatic. In fact, many of you are going to be let down. Ready? The carpet was replaced. Yep...that's all folks. Maybe you are wondering why I did not take the time to pack my belongings because obviously everything has to be moved out of a room that is getting new carpet. Here's why: We were notified via email on Tuesday afternoon that the carpet would be replaced on Wednesday. I was not at work. But I really wasn't concerned because the email indicated that the only thing we needed to do was pick our stuff up that was on the floor. I had about 3 things on the floor...nothing of importance. I think that it's safe to say that carpet layers do not have the same vocational skills and abilities that movers do.

Monday, January 5, 2009

If I Were the Surgeon General

I would mandate that there be warnings prior to the beginning of certain reality shows. Take The Bachelor, for example. Here are some potential Surgeon General Warnings:

Watching The Bachelor will result in loss of brain cells.
Watching The Bachelor will result in a terribly skewed perception of reality.
Participating in The Bachelor will result in mental instability with side effects including but not limited to hysteria.
By participating in The Bachelor you put yourself at risk of injury from excessive cat-fighting.

Did anyone else watch this? Is anyone else as appalled by such behavior as I am? Do these people seriously think that they are going to form a meaningful and lasting relationship all the while people sit at home on their sofas and soak this stuff up like it's the sun? Here are my thoughts:
To me, watching the introductions is like watching a bad Rush (Recruitment these days) party. There are all of these dolled up young women DYING to make a good impression and they do ridiculous stuff in the process. Like the time back in college when a girl (who shall remain nameless because I don't want her to beat me up) showed up on the first night of Rush wearing a green shirt, green skirt and green tights.

Ok, so it's all great that he's a single dad and he's doing such an honorable thing by raising his son. But does he really want his son to run across the old DVD's of Daddy's Bachelor episodes one day and learn it was during this period of time when Daddy contracted a venereal disease?

Speaking of single parents...what about the single mothers who left their children at home so they could fly across the country to proclaim their hopeless dedication and devotion to this family man? Am I the only one who finds this puzzling?

And the girl who left her job as a school teacher???? Really?

Personally I think it's always very classy when a girl gets so sloshed on cheap wine the first night that she spills her guts within range of the 5,000 microphones placed strategically throughout the room.

Call me old-fashioned. Call me jaded. But this doesn't work. Sure, Trista and Ryan are doing just great, but while money doesn't buy happiness, it sure can't hurt. Yes, call me jaded.

Mama Said There'd Be Days Like This

I haven't worked since last year. (Yes, I'm the moron who is silly and says that.) And as silly as it might sound, I was actually looking forward to getting back to work this morning. While I loved my 2.5 week long vay-cay and all the things that went along with it, deep down I'm a girl who needs some structure in my life, and I was anxious to get back to my little routine. When I left my workspace on December 18, 2008 it looked very much like this...Except the monitors and light was turned off because I'm all about energy efficiency. It turns out that my little closet collapse last night was just a prelude to what this morning would bring because look what I came face to face with at 7:50 this morning... I especially like how my right-side monitor is smashed flat between notebooks. And don't even get me started on that chair. The chair in the picture is not mine. My chair is one of the top 5 reasons why I go to work each's just that great. Maybe someday soon I'll tell you all the story about how I went on a mission and rescued it from a faculty member's office just a couple of hours ago, but I'm too tired to talk about it now.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Blame It on the Skinny Jeans

Remember a few days ago when I cleaned out my closet because I feared that the shelf was going to fall at any moment? Tonight I was hanging up some clothes when I was blind-sided by some flying debris (a.k.a. shoes)...The shoes konked me on the noggin because I had two rows of them on top of the closet shelf that crashed to the ground. Unfortunately Kid Rock (my new neighbor who looks exactly like him so that's what I call the dude) is back from his most recent tour so I hope that he wasn't trying to get some shut eye because I'm sure the sound of shoes, denim, cotton, polyester, metal, and plastic falling from above would wake even Rip Van Winkle. At least someone thought it was funny...