Friday, October 31, 2008

Because I am known for my rappelling prowess

Most scientists are quite liberal and uber democrats. Such is the case for one of the professors on the 8th floor of our building, who is in our work group. We'll refer to him as Rob.

Some of the younger faculty (hooligans I might add) decided it would be a riot to put McCain/Palin signs in his window. Well, actually on the outside of his window, where it would be a challenge for him to remove them. Being how his window is on the EIGHTH FLOOR, it was going to be a challenge putting them up. As the saying goes, where there's a motivated hooligan with an accessible balcony and an extension pole, there's a way.

Though I missed the photo mounting antics, I did get to see the aftermath. Needless to say, Rob was a tad miffed. What could be worse for a rabid democrat than to be faced with Sarah Palin's vapid, smiling stare?!? Oh, my belly aches from the laughter!

When our administrator Mary talked to him about it, he asked her who did it. She said, "Think of one of your sarcastic little buddies." Then he said, "Did Denise do it?"

Whaaaaat? Did I do it??? Number one, I am kind of touched he considers me a little buddy. I had no idea. But how on earth did he think I would be capable of mounting 5 laminated posters on the outside of an 8th floor window? Yes, I am known for my Spiderman-like building scaling talents.

Being bored and easily amused, this drove me to draw yet another cartoon of me up to shenanigans. I tried to use an actual picture of his office as the backdrop for my illustration, but the bright light spilling in foiled my photographic attempts. So I drew it all from scratch:
I kinda look like one of the Incredibles!

This afternoon at lunch, I got curious as to whether the signs were visible from the ground. Though they weren't made double sided, just the thought of being able to see them from afar made me laugh. And sure enough, about a block away, I looked up, pointed and burst out laughing! YOU CAN SEE THE SIGNS FROM HERE!

Always carrying my camera, I had to take a picture. I love digital cameras! If you look a the top floor, you can see the small white squares that are the back of the campaign signs!

Eeeew, bandage!

That is one of my favorite lines from Family Guy--it's from an episode when Stewie is having swimming lessons, sinks to the bottom of the pool and sees a nasty, floating band-aid wafting dangerously close to him in the current. ICK!!!

For whatever reason, other peoples' misplaced bandages gives me the willies.

I've noticed a disturbingly large number of such bandages on the sidewalks lately. The jaunt from my car to the office is almost a mile. I've seen as many as 3 grimy band-aids adhered to the sidewalk on a single walk.


This week, by the sports medicine clinic, there was a monstrously huge bandage on the sidewalk. (Gag!) Wednesday night it was kind of up near the corner, lying on its back back with the adhesive side up. The thought of having stepped on this and tracking someone else's used band-aid into my house gave me nightmares. I would simply have to throw the shoes away. Bad shiver.

When I walked in Thursday, the lost bandage had made its way half a block east. I felt compelled to take a picture so you too can join in the horrifying sensation of what I can potentially encounter on my walks. You know I've got to be dedicated to improving my health if I keep walking in spite of being confronted by stuff like this:

This is a double-wide band-aid--how do you not notice this thing flapping prior to falling off? EEEEW!!!

Freaky Friday

Happy Halloween!

Though I'm not much of a costumer myself, I do enjoy other people's costumes and it seems like the people in my boss' lab take it quite seriously. Today there was a throng of witches, a Christian Martyr, a jester, an obsessed futball fan, and a couple other random outfits.

I was trying to have an official business meeting with my boss when he popped up in an ultimate Oh Shiny moment to grab his camera and abandon me. He said, "Sorry! Just saw someone I need to take a picture of!" Cool. Now I don't feel so bad for not preparing well for this meeting, heh heh.

After we wrapped things up, RB (the boss) and I went into the lab to check out the costumes. He decided to stage a few scenarios of the witches three and the martyr. Okay, thrust the rosary and your bible at the witches--witches, recoil in fear! Okay, now all the witches: grab me by the neck and choke me!

I'm not quite sure what he had for breakfast this morning, but I want some!

Some other notable comments from the picture taking extravaganza:
  • RB on Jane's witchy, spiderweb gloves: Hey Jane, I like your gloves. They're kinda doin' it for me!
  • Jane on the Chinese tech's costume: Oh, look! She dressed up like a Chinese lady! (??? Uh, Jane, she IS a Chinese lady!)
  • RB on the orange wig: Oh, I can go as Harish dressed up as ME!
FYI, Harish is a guy in the lab who has hideously dyed henna hair. For RB to make this wisecrack damn near laid me out on the floor in fits of laughter. I swear, I want what he's having! BAH!

I'll have to bug the girls for some photos. Nothing says fun like blackmail material!

And then the martyr said, "Ohh? We weren't supposed to do it for real?"

Friday, October 24, 2008

She's got a big Mappetite

Map is my youngest, my Baby Love.  She's a freaky mutant fluffy coated corgi and she is my heart dog.  She's also a wicked, naughty girl.  She's pretty and she knows it and she uses that to manipulate people.  She gets mad when she realizes being the pretty one and getting away with murder doesn't float well with me.  But I'm the cute one! she pouts.

I used to crate all my dogs at night.  The girls do well out, so only Jack stays in his giant crate at night.  Prior to moving the ladies' crates out of the living room, I used to feed them in their crates as well.  Jack, ever the unstable one, still gets fed in his crate so he doesn't go wonky on anyone.

Tuesday used to be a very picky eater.  She would always rather hold out on the slim chance she'd get some people food than to eat the food she was given.  That has changed since she got sick and was spayed.  Now she's a veritable piglet.  But in the past, she'd just ignore the kibble (you expect me to eat that?) and let it go stale in her bowl.

Map, however, couldn't stand to see a good bowl of food go to waste.  She was so motivated to get the food that she figured out how to open the locked crate to get to the delicious morsels inside.  That's the shenanigans she is up to in the following clip:

Sewer Burps

Coprophagia. Two of my three dogs indulge in this behavior, the lovely act of snacking on poop. Fortunately, Tuesday is a picky eater and sticks to kibble. But apparently her output is exquisite in texture and taste, because Map and Jack love to have backyard taste testings.

I have not had much luck in my half-hearted attempts at discouraging them from this behavior. A vet friend told me to feed them charcoal flavored biscuits, as the charcoal would make the poo unpalatable. Not so much. Least not at my house. Carra says sprinkle MSG on their food, it'll have the same effect as the charcoal. In this day of health and fitness, no one sells MSG anymore! What to do, what to do?

For now, I just yell at them, "Poop is NOT a snack!" which works about as well as charcoal biscuits. They just look up guiltily and gobble the poop down faster, before I can get it away from them.

Wednesday night, Jack and I were having our traditional evening cuddle session on the big purple chair. I was patting him on the back when he turned to look at me and then burped in my face. Yeah, you guessed it: poopy burp!!! OMG, it was like a stagnant cloud wafting from an open sewer!!! I was laugh-gagging, so funny yet so very disgusting!

All I can say is that there is never a dull moment with my dogs. Or a clean scented one, for that matter!

I like poop!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Stalker Walker

As I've mentioned before, I have started walking in from the parking lots to get some exercise. It takes me about 20 minutes and after doing this for about a month, I am really coming to enjoy it.

The buses, though convenient, are infinitely annoying. The drivers tend to wait and wait for passengers--they'd rather hold 30 people hostage while they wait on someone chatting on a cell phone, slowly sauntering to the bus stop. Then there's the germophobe driver whose bus smells so strongly of lysol that it makes me gag. So, it doesn't take much to convince me to walk and avoid those stressors, especially since the weather has cooled.

I used to listen to my iPod during the walk, but these days I actually find it preferable to listen to the podcast in my head. Now, it's almost a meditative state. My walks are very soothing and relaxing. And I don't particularly like talking to people while I'm in the zone.

Enter the stalker walker.

He's a nice enough guy that I've known on campus for over 10 years. He's well meaning and nice. But I just don't want to talk to him on my walk. And it seems that our schedules have been overlapping lately. Ugh!

Last week, I came out of my building and saw him a mere few feet ahead--yikes! I dodged behind a car and worked on tying my shoes. Thing is, in spite of his massive height, he trundles along like a turtle. And he's a collector. A collector of anything that is not nailed down. So he is usually carrying loads of garbage, which further slows him down.

I gave him ample time to get well ahead of me. But as I continued on my walk, I caught up! He was standing between buildings staring at the foliage. Damn! Why didn't I go another way? Being ever so clandestine, I ducked behind a tree and pretended to fumble through my bag. He would not move on! Jeeeez. Finally he did, and I gave him more time to get a head start. He'd schlep forward, I'd catch up. He'd cut across parking lots and I'd go around the perimeter to waste time. We were like a slinky working across campus. It took me an extra 10 minutes to get to my car and that's 10 minutes of my life I'll never get back!

I told my friend Katy and she reminded me of similar experiences she had with him. Ahhh, fantastic! It's not just me. Again, he's a nice enough person, but once you get caught, you can't get out. And being trapped in stressful small talk is in total opposition to my meditation walks. I hope he is oblivious to my scampering escapades, though my friends think otherwise.

Needless to say, this adventure inspired yet another South Park illustration. This time I pushed the artistic envelope by taking pictures of the actual tree hiding location and adding the characters to this photo background. Now, every time I enter that area I spontaneously start laughing. It's only a matter of time until they cart me away!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Tuesday is a grandma and I am completely insane!

Tuesday is one of my three Pembroke Welsh Corgis, and she had one litter of puppies. She didn't much care for the routine and found a clever, life threatening way of getting out of having more: pyometra (closed uterine infection). Yup, it nearly killed her, but it totally got her out of ever having to birth babies again!

Her daughter Bangle was not so lucky and had her first litter yesterday. It was four pups, two girls and two boys. So Tuesday is a grandma at the ripe old age of 5. That's impressive even by local redneck standards!

Where my insanity comes in is that I am getting a puppy. Yeah, apparently 3 is not enough. I've gotten into the dog show society over the past few years and I quite enjoy it. Mostly because I take it very lightly and look at everything with the slant of my own personal entertainment value. I can make anything funny. It might not be funny to anyone else, but hey, I am easily amused.

I hate going to all these shows and not having anything to show. Hence dog #4. You know, because I don't have enough fur on the floor already. (Just in case you didn't know, corgis shed like a nightmare!)

Carra, my breeder buddy and close friend, has 14 puppies and I get one of them. It'll be awhile before they're at a stage where we can pick which one I get, as right now they just look like large hamsters. We'll see if I come to my senses by the time it's puppy pickin' time. Vegas odds are not in my favor.

Here's a look at the newest babies and their mamma!

Weight Loss Surgery

I'm not sure if I'll add a separate blog for this, but I do want to write about it.

I'm planning on having an off switch installed: a Realize Band, which is like the Lap Band. It's a laparoscopic surgery in which a flexible silicone band is wrapped around the upper portion of your stomach. It has a similar effect as the gastric bypass surgery, Roux-en-Y, but is significantly less invasive.

Anyway, I have been attending some support groups as I research the procedure and have been learning a lot about life after the band. For instance, you should not use straws. Using a straw to consume beverages causes you to gulp air into your stomach and to consume too much too quickly. The net effect is to stretch out your new little stomach into the flappy Hefty bag your old one was. Not so helpful in the realm of weight loss.

However, my friend Katy, who is super supportive and helpful made the suggestion to try using a coffee stirrer sized straw. You can't suck in that much that fast with it, right? I adore Katy because of the great person she is, but for some reason the thought of me sipping a huge glass of iced tea with a teeny coffee stirrer cracked me up! I immediately envisioned myself popping a vein in my eye from the brute strength of the suction required to imbibe!

One of my other hobbies (i.e., time wasters) is to draw cartoons of myself. I like to use one of those South Park do it yourself sites and then paste the pix into backgrounds that I make myself. Needless to say, me with a ghastly red eye was the perfect concept for a drawing!

My dear Katy, thank you for being my muse!

My latest pet peeves

I have two in the forefront these days:
  • cell phones
  • people who whore out their children on local TV commercials
I recently started upping my exercise and one way of doing that is skipping the shuttles that run from the buildings to the parking lots. I like the quiet time to think and reflect, not to mention the calorie burn. But I see some weird things on these walks. Many include cell phones. The number of people I see trying to smoke, dial and steer is on the rise. Lovely!

And I had my first Girl on a Bike on Her Cell. This was not a serious bike enthusiast. No spandex togs and pointy helmet. She probably could have used a helmet as I'm surprised she didn't fall off and crack her head. She was steering with one hand and holding the phone to her head with the other (kid, you go to Vanderbilt. Daddy couldn't get you a bluetooth headset??). The real fun began when she attempted to turn the corner! It's hard to lean into the turn with one hand out of the game. Somehow, as she wobbled around, she managed to tuck the phone between her ear and shoulder to two hand manage the handlebars. Of course that left her seriously off balance and she nearly toppled off. I really need to remember to carry my camera in my pocket when I walk to the car! Some of this stuff you gotta see to believe.

As for the other pet peeve, I don't know if this is common in all local television markets or just Nashville, but it seems that all the ads for small, local businesses like to include their families in their commercials. Like it all started with that Watson's guy and his daughter. I thought that she was just a model and then totally got creeped out when I found out she was his child! Eeeew! But something just gives me the willies when I see the furniture peddling teen or the scary singing replacement window tween. Ick. All you did was guarantee that I would not buy your product. Too creeeeepy.

Ice Cream Thief!!!

Our traditional lunch group went to Jason's Deli not too long ago. I was in the mood for a giant salad bar salad, the weather was gorgeous and it was worth the hike. The scary part is crossing West End. Nashville is not known for its sane drivers, and this is 6 lanes of vehicular torture for pedestrians. Yikes.

We were standing on the corner waiting for the walk light and this woman nearby was just irritating me. She reminded me of this middle aged woman I used to ride the shuttle bus with, who would always talk loudly (in a whiny voice) to her mother on her cell phone. No one cares what you had for breakfast or how thick the traffic was. Seriously.

Apparently we were irritating her too. There were four of us in our group and we cut in front of her as we neared the corner. So sorry. Jason's has two doors: one is for take out, one is for dining in. We went in the dining in door and annoying woman went in the take out door. She gave us all dirty looks as she tried to weasel her way into the dining area through the crowd in line. I didn't pay her much attention, but my friend Angela did. And she pointed out that the woman just swiped an ice cream cone!

Yes, the woman pushed her way past us, walked herself to the back of the restaurant, got a soft serve ice cream cone, turned and boldly walked out. Whaaaaa??? Premeditated frozen confection thievery!!!

Needless to say, I was stunned! Who steals ice cream from a salad bar joint? What was this woman thinking on her way over? You don't just randomly cross West End for the fun of it. She must have really wanted ice cream. Grainy, disgusting self-serve ice cream. Eeew. Is she cheap? Does she do it for the thrill? Yes, I may be naive, but it would never occur to me to do that. Plus I'd be nailed in a heartbeat before I could even skulk my way out of there. I'm not so good in the lying and stealing department. Might as well wear a sign.

You know what would really suck? If she went to Hell for this! Even worse than being in prison . . . what are you in for? Murder? Rape? Money Laundering? No. I swiped a free cone.

I hate when that happens.