Wednesday, December 20, 2006

The King of Pop

On Monday I was in charge of the Christmas party we held for the clients at my work. If you remember, they are adults with developmental disabilities, so Santa plays a LARGE role in the festivities. Santa came to the party and each client got a chance to visit with him and they all took home some gifts.

One client, Jane, took a moment to talk to Santa and she seemed genuinely excited to see him. As she walked away from Santa, with a grin on her face, she muttered to nobody in particular:
"Now do I get to meet Michael Jackson?"

Monday, December 18, 2006

Can't You Hear the Alphaville Playing

Just for fun, I answered these questions. Feel free to answer them yourself, but you really should share with the group!

PS - See Duchess, I am a cyber-stalker!

1. Who was your first prom date?
Chris – ask my mom about the dress. Her only disaster.

2. Who was your first room mate?
Other than my sister, you move on to my husband. Unless you count the week at cheerleading camp: Faith.

3. What alcoholic beverage did you first drink?
Wine, sneaked from the fridge when I was 14.

4. What was your first job?
Cleaning a doctor’s office, $20 a pop.

5. What was your first car?
1989 Geo Metro. It cost $9.00 to fill up and I could drive on that for over a week. It was gray, had a kick-ass stereo, and my mom once found my boyfriend’s (see #18) underwear under the front seat. Man, I miss that car.

6. When did you go to your first funeral?
1984 – Great-grandma Hipwell.

7. Who was your first grade teacher?
Mrs. Bromley – coincidently, also my 5th grade teacher. Creepily, I dated her son in high school (I’m grimacing as I type).

8. Where did you go on your first ride on an airplane?
California – Disneyland to support the Americanization and corporatization of the world.

9. When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?
Do you mean “sneaked?” I am sad to report I have led a very obedient life, and I cannot recall ever sneaking out of the house. But my sister did… now that’s a story. Damn dogs.

10. Who was your first best friend and are you still friends?
Stephanie and No. But my next best friend was Faith, and yes.

11. Where was your first sleepover?
I’m going to guess my paternal grandparents. Friend-sleepover was Stephanie, mentioned in #10.

12. Who is the first person you talk to in the morning?
Mr. Eris, when I growl at him to quit waking me up even though, the night before, I specifically asked him to wake me up in the morning.

13. Whose wedding were you in the first time?
Being a niece to several aunts, I have spent many a wedding in a flower girl or honorary flower girl dress. The first time I was ever truly in a wedding it was my sister’s – man did she hate me back then. She spent a lot of time muttering for me to get away from her. I’m pretty sure I was asked to be in the wedding per my mother’s instructions.

14. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Hit the snooze button. 6 times. Then I get up and curse myself for sleeping in.

15. What was the first concert you ever went to?
The Monkees and Weird Al Yankovic. Woo-hoo!!!

16. First celebrity crush?
I was going to be Mrs. Larry Gatlin. Now he’s a Bushie, so that’s definitely off.

17. First crush?
Jesse H. So cute, but very short. Broke my heart – lesson learned.

18. First TRUE love?
I’ll be skewered for this: Chad H. High school sweetheart, would have married him in a heartbeat – but he dumped me because he was convinced I was in love with Mr. Eris (my ETERNAL LOVE).

19. When was your first detention?

I have added:
20. When was your first kiss?
Age 13, at Barbara P.’s birthday party at Golden Spike Ice Skating Arena. It was Monte S. and the kiss was a quick peck. But, my first real kiss, with all the trimmings: Age 14, with a guy I met at Lagoon. So very Utah.

Sunday, December 10, 2006


Mr. Eris is now sans-bone tumor and the happy host of a 7" rod in the femur, a 3" screw into the hip, and a partial bone graft.

He's doing well - thanks for your well-wishes and prayers!


On December 6th, I turned 30. Thirty is awesome. Most people dread this birthday, but I have been looking forward to it. I made a lot of progress in my twenties: graduated from college - twice, had 3 kids, built a successful marriage, bought a house, started a career, etc.

But I also made a lot of bonehead mistakes. In honor of waving goodbye to my twenties, I have composed a list of things I will not miss about the years 1996 - 2006:

1. Working at Blockbuster. Sure, I met my husband and several of my best friends there, but that company sucked. They laid me off and then screwed me over - multiple times. Besides retail sucks.
2. Being overly concerned with how others see me. In my twenties I
spent a lot of time worrying about whether or not I looked stupid - I'm hoping to avoid this in the next decade.
3. Stupid choices in friends. For some reason I wasted a ridiculous amount of time with a person who: a. picked fights with me for no reason and then made me apologize for doing nothing wrong; b. was disliked by my family and other friends; c. spoke ill of my children; and d. was just an all-around-bitch. That better not happen in my thirties.
4. Uncomfortableness with my in-laws. My first few years of marriage were riddled with awkwardness and sublte-hostility between my husband's mother and me. These challenges have morphed into an understanding that we both love my husband a whole lot and can stand on that common ground, avoiding the rocky stuff.
5. The Nincompoop.

Ok, so that's my list of reasons why 30 is to be embraced. Besides, I'll always be the youngest sibling in my family, and Brent, Wendy, Nancy, and Jennifer: that's what really matters.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Can't Sleep

I have a defect. Perfectionism. I am not perfect: that is the problem. Tonight while trying to fall asleep, I realized I had made a small mistake at work today. Nothing catastrophic. It could make me look like a doofus if my boss has to find out, but I don't think that will happen.

Anyway, I am now unable to sleep.

I do this all the time. I make a mistake and I act like it's the end of the world. "Oh no! People will actually realize that I am prone to error." Let the overreacting and irritable bowel begin. Could someone please help me gain some perspective, here?

PS - To Mom again, you'll notice the rant has changed slightly just to be safe. :)

Beware: A Rant

I have been absent recently, due, in part, to some emergency family situations, but mostly because our laptop just up and quit on us. UGH! So in honor of our crappy computer and the fact that I am an inch away from strangling the next a**hole who bugs me at work – here’s another list of things that are pissing me off.

1. Second-hand laptops that work perfectly for 3 months and then die - repeatedly.

2. People telling me to eat something. Or even better: People asking my husband if I'm ok because I've lost weight and, apparently, have bags under my eyes?!?! Thanks, that feels good.

3. The fact that I am in the mood to crank some System of a Down, but am at work and must, therefore, settle for something that doesn’t have a parental warning sticker.

4. Blah, blah, blah. Things about work.

5. Tumors in the bone. FU** YOU!

6. People who claim poverty to me. I work for a non-profit, am the sole bread-winner in the family, and in two weeks will be faced with a literal SH**-load of medical bills (see #5). Don’t tell me how poor you are, I really don’t want to hear about it.

7. The liberal media myth. This one’s just under my skin right now because I’m watching the post-election coverage and it’s so blatantly pro-conservative/Republican that I could vomit.

8. Criminals as church leaders. If you have, oh I don’t know, embezzled thousands of dollars from a previous employer YOU ARE A THIEF, not a spiritual advisor.

9. Cramps and anything involving my nether regions. I’d like to saw myself in half.

10. The fact that I have to wait until March or April to find out about school. I miss being in school so badly right now, and I just want to know if I’m going or if I’m trapped here for another hellishly boring year. Dear UW, Please let me be a Husky. Love always, Eris.

Wow, I really do feel better now.

PS - Mom, I'm really ok.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


I cannot contain my glee today. Overwhelming happiness for the following:

- San Francisco's Nancy Pelosi (BTW, she spent 50 years as a June freaking Cleaver, stay-at-home mom) is the likely Speaker of the House. A woman will be 3rd in line for the presidency. Don't get me wrong, I dislike President Bush and all he and his crazy-ass conservative buddies stand for, but I don't wish him ill. My glee over Nancy Pelosi is that it just brings us one step closer.
Ovaries in the Oval Office!

- Missouri and stem cell research. Claire McCaskill is a pro-choice, pro-family liberall who strongly supports stem cell research. And as Ms. McCaskill went, so went the approval of stem cell research on the ballot.

- South Dakota and my uterus can now be friends. Thanks to all South Dakotans who voted down the abortion ban. Thanks for definitively stating that I, as a grown woman who can be trusted as an employee, as a mother, and as a citizen, can actually be trusted to make a wise and informed decision on what to do with my body.

There's much more, but considering that I was up until 12:30 watching returns and I am not being the most productive at work... I should really get back to work.

UPDATE: Seriously, Donald Rumsfeld resigns? I am giddy. Dance naked in the streets giddy.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Lefty, pinko, tree-hugging, tax-hiking, French-speaking, pro-choice, feminazi... and Damn Proud of It!

Your 'Do You Want the Terrorists to Win' Score: 100%

You are a terrorist-loving, Bush-bashing, "blame America first"-crowd traitor. You are in league with evil-doers who hate our freedoms. By all counts you are a liberal, and as such cleary desire the terrorists to succeed and impose their harsh theocratic restrictions on us all. You are fit to be hung for treason! Luckily George Bush is tapping your internet connection and is now aware of your thought-crime. Have a nice day.... in Guantanamo!

Do You Want the Terrorists to Win?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Friday, November 03, 2006

November 3, 4, 6

I’m not entirely sure how to write this, and it will undoubtedly sound self-absorbed, so maybe I shouldn’t. But I have to let something out and this is the place to do it.

Tomorrow is November 4, which makes Sunday November 5. A date which likely means nothing to most of the world. But I meet November 5 with mixed emotions. It was one year ago that I watched helplessly from the sidelines as two of the best friends I have in my life went through unspeakable events. The details aren’t important, let’s just say they were in pain and I could do nothing to make it better.

The past year has brought more tears than I thought I could cry and such a feeling of uselessness. I am a “fixer.” I want things to be perfect for everyone and I will do all I can to make it so. But this… this I couldn’t fix. I watched these women and all I could do was listen to them, hope to find the right words to help and pray. A LOT.

I am praying. I went to the temple for them (even the Catholic one, because I know she would appreciate any gesture of faith). They seem to be doing well – a testament to their strength. Still, I sit by the phone, ready to talk to them if they need it, but afraid to call them for fear of dragging them down when they may have just gotten back up.

So I meet November 5, not knowing what to do. I feel the urge to tell it to fu** off. It’s a horrible day that I don’t want my friends to ever think of again.

I feel the urge to weep uncontrollably, for the pain they went through and the loss they suffered.

I want to scream at the world, “Stop moving! These women need a damn ticker tape parade!” Then I will line everyone up and make them cheer and throw roses.

But strangely enough, I feel the urge to celebrate on this day – getting one of them drunk and singing karaoke with the other – because they have made it through. This to me is bigger than the sadness. They are brilliant and beautiful and amazing. They are more than I ever could be. They will make it to November 6, 2006.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Give That Woman a Freaking Medal!

Oh man, I'd like to shake this woman's hand.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Things That Probably Never Happen Where You Work

I keep a mental list of things that happen at my job that would never happen at your job. Sometimes I include items from that list here for your enjoyment. Well, one of those things is happening right now.

I share an office with someone. He came into our office after I sat in here with the door closed for an hour and all he said was, "It stinks in here. (Pause) It smells like piss in here."

At your job you'd be offended right? Well not here. First, we check the chairs to make sure none of our clients sneaked in and left a present (this happens). Second, we check all the walls. Third, we ask everyone in the front office to remember if they saw anyone fishy doing anything fishy.

All these things are done because you never know where urine, and any other bodily fluids, will end up around here. I love it here.

Must Read

On this election day I will vote with this burned on my brain. And it will stay there, I hope forever.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Out and Proud

I just love anything gay, so this makes me very proud.
Lesbian dreams: The best kind!
Gay cowboy movie: A chocolate bar melted on my lap in the theater. True story.

While I disagree with the basic premise that Bert and Ernie are gay, I must say that I am awfully good at Doing the Pigeon. Yes, that's an actual thing.

You Are the Very Gay Bert and Ernie!

Two grown puppets living together, sleeping in the same room?They've even got coordinating striped shirts!
What Gay Childhood Icon Are You?

Help Me! I'm One of Them

I don't think I've mentioned this before, but I married a geek. Cute, but a geek. Seriously, our office is decorated with unopened X-Men action figures. (Not dolls - ACTION FIGURES.) We have a life-size Spiderman standee, several Marvel-themed games and a stack of boxes filled with comic books, some in different languages. I find this quirky and adorable.

Anyway... My geek and I have spent the last couple of years rolling our eyes at the nerds who are obsessed with Lost. We didn't watch it from the beginning - I can honestly say I have never seen an episode of Lost or Survivor - so we don't understand the references and honestly couldn't care less.

It's important to understand that I am much more judgemental than my geek. I have looked at the Lost-ites with sadness. What is wrong with their lives that they feel the need to latch onto this show? Can they not use some of this energy to read a book? take up a hobby? learn some trade? Then I find out I have Lost-ites in the family. Even the Duchess, someone whose intelligence and sociability I greatly admire, is a Lost-ite.

So, I have been judging you all. How pathetic you are to be so obsessed with a tv show.

Then came Monday night and Heroes. I started with this show for 2 reasons: first, my geek has gotten me marginally interested in comic books (all right, it's more the off-chance that someone as hot as Hugh Jackman will appear in any super-hero representation); and second, it leads into my Sorkin-fix, Studio 60. But then it happened. I got hooked.

I have become one of them. I have been 3 days without any new information on the Heroes front and I actually miss it. I met a local celebrity yesterday and engaged him in conversation about Heroes. I am boring my co-workers with laborious expalanations and theories about the show. I am actually praying for the weekend to be over so I can see what will happen next.

How did this happen?! I used to read. I used to watch Monday Night Football. I was cool in high school - this is not me!

I have decided to embrace the geek in me. I will now fully immerse myself in the Heroes world. I'm thinking about ordering the graphic novel. Maybe I'll join a chat room. Wait, that may be going a bit too far. But I can tell you this: if you call my home between the hours of 8 and 10 on a Monday night, no one will answer. And when I call you back, you will be forced to listen to a scene-by-scene replay of what happened. Which you won't enjoy because as the local celebrity and I painstakingly discussed: we're in the character-building process, which is the biggest, longest and most important part of the story arc.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


Eris is emotional right now.

Click on the title.

Watch the video.

These guys are all a bunch of bastards, Bush is their ass-hat king and Rush Limbaugh is their jester.

I miss my Grandpa.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Drum Roll, Please

The GRE is done.

600 Verbal
600 Quanititative

Look for a post in 2 weeks with the written score.

Note: I am pretty sure I spelled "inuit" wrong in my essay. Damnit! I thought it was "enuit." So much for being politically correct - I know how to spell Eskimo!

Barak Saves Eris

Sometime in the year 2004 I made a bet. Now, those of you who know me well know that this is highly uncharacteristic. I once spent all my "gambling" money on a pair of shoes at the Neiman Marcus mall in Vegas. So, you must know how passionate I feel about the following story.

My brother and I have a special bond. While sharing very liberal opinions, we like to argue about the minor details on which we disagree. Once at a family dinner we got into a yelling fight over the Legacy Highway. He called me a "tree-hugging, tse-tse fly loving environmentalist" so I called him a Republican. My dad stopped us immediately and said, "We don't call each other names like that at the dinner table."

Anyway, sometime in the year 2004 we were discussing politics and how the Democrats could screw up any election. Both us were arguing the same point: Democrats are right, but dumb. He predicted that Hilary Rodham Clinton would be the Democratic nominee for President in 2008. I said, "We're not that dumb." We argued for a moment and then shook hands on a $100 bet: I say Hilary is not the nominee in 2008. He says she is.

- I am a HUGE Hilary fan. Oh, that I were to live in an alternate universe where she were recognized as a brilliant woman who worked to save her marriage... But no, I live in the universe where she is seen as an intrusive, over-bearing bitch who only stayed married because it was good political strategy. -

It pains me to say this, but I believe nominating Hilary would be a mistake of astronomical proportion. People just don't like her, and she cannot win. Not even the Democrats are this dumb.

My brother reminds me of this bet constantly - anytime some BS poll comes out or TIME or Newsweek does a cover story on her likely bid he calls me. I was pretty sure Warner of Virginia was going to run and save me - but then the chicken backs out. Now though, it looks like my favorite skinny nerd is going to be my knight in shining armor. Barak, you have my support. I like the idea of an Obama/Clinton ticket - the bet says nothing about a VP run.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Part IV

Ok, so I am making time this week to post this. It's just tooooo good to pass up. Two words at a time. Ready:

Word #4
magnanimity a quality of nobleness of mind, disdaining meanness or revenge.

Word #5
churlishness crude or surly behavior; behavior of a peasant.

Used in a sentence:
Having lived a life of magnanimity, my father was not familiar with the term "hock a lugey." Once explained, he was even more surprised to find that his charming wife had engaged in such an act of churlishness.

NOTE: Love you, Mom!

See you next week...

This week's schedule
1. Work at real job
2. Drive from real job to shoe store
3. Work at shoe store
4. Home to bed

1. Work at real job
2. Drive from real job to in-law's house
3. Attend temple in bid to win divine intervention in husband's job search and my attempt at the GRE on Saturday

1. Breakfast with kids to get reacquainted
2. Work at real job
3. Drive from real job to shoe store
4. Work at (this is starting to feel familiar...) shoe store
5. Home to bed

1. Work at real job
2. Parent-Teacher Conference
3. Home to study for my attempt at the GRE on Saturday
- Skip out on meeting at 7:30 -
4. Start fast in bid to win divine intervention in my attempt at the GRE on Saturday
5. Bed

1. Work at real job
2. Home to study
3. Bed, which almost assuredly result in NO SLEEP.

1. Attempt the GRE.
2. Receive score.
3. Pass out.

In between:
-Remember to talk to my kids
-Remember to talk to husband. What's his name again?
-Help friend get ready for adoption agency interviews
-Find something to eat - this is a chore because, as the Duchess has pointed out, I have been blessed to live off a no-wheat, no-dairy, no-red meat diet.
-Plan a lesson on chapters 50-53 in the Book of Isaiah. That should be simple.
-Pay bills

Friday, October 13, 2006

To Honor the Newbie

One week ago we celebrated my daughter's first birthday. It was pretty much family-only - pretty small, by comparison to other First Birthday parties I've seen. This post is not about the party, or the baby. It's about a guest.

My nephew (see "Breaking in the Newbie" by clicking on the title) has become interested in politics and we often have fun chats about what party he would join or for whom he would vote. At the birthday party he told me about an online quiz he took to determine his "true" party affiliation. Ready? Constitution

His being a member of the Constitution Party does not bother me too much. After all, he could be a Republican. What bothered me was one of the examples he gave for why that party is right for him. Here's how he put it:
Newbie: "Like, I don't believe that if a lady crosses the border from Mexico and she, like, has a baby that that baby should be a citizen."
Eris: "Why not?"
Newbie: "Because they, like, broke the law and shouldn't be a citizen just cause the girl got here in time."
Eris: "So we should punish a person who had nothing to do with the crime and send them to a country they don't know?"
Newbie: "Well..."
Eris: "And what about kids who have been here their whole lives. They only know America, but because of the decision their mother made how many years ago, they have to leave?"

And that's the way it went. I was pleasantly surprised to find this little quiz to accompany this story. So, take the quiz, and see if you "deserve" to be an American...
You Passed the US Citizenship Test

Congratulations - you got 9 out of 10 correct!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

It depends on what your definition of "precocious" is

Ok, so I have sat back and watched the moral Republicans tap-dance around the fact that they have been hugging a pedophile and I'll admit it: I'm partisan enough that I have laughed out loud. It feels good to know that this party which has spent the better part of TWO decades calling me and everything I believe in value-less and basically evil can screw up this bad.

So now I sit back and smile as I watch people squirm with every last detail of the Mark Foley scandal. At first I felt some sympathy - having been a Democrat during the Monica Lewinsky thing, I remember what it's like to realize you backed the sleazy horse. But then I realized, "Hey, my guy was not a hypocrite. He was just horny." Think about it: President Clinton messed around with a young girl in the Oval Office - ewww. (For the record, I will never understand this. He's just not attractive.) The important distinctions here are that he was messing around with someone who was a. over 18, and then some; and 2. not a guy! It's also important to note that Foley was the CHAIR of the House Committee on Missing and Exploited Children. It's a Greek Tragedy and I love it!!!

Don't get me wrong, 2 guys is hot. Brokeback Mountain anyone? But for the party who has made gay-bashing an art, this is just too good. And for the people like me who have been staring, mouths agape at the blind faith the public seems to have in the Republicans, it's euphoric.

Here in Utah the GOP is still the end all when it comes to morals and just being good old plain folks. This is the party which holds the moral compass and tells us all where to go. And what to drink. And who to kiss. (But you can do whatever you want with your gun.)

So, I invite each of you to click on the title and take a listen to one of Utah's senior statesmen and how he sees the congressional page scandal.

**Oh, oh! Let's call it Page-Gate! It's about time those sanctimonious blowhards got their own damn Gate, besides, of course, the original one that led to an impeachment. But I digress.**

Listen to Chris Cannon basically blame the "precocious kids" who work their guts out as congressional pages. It's pretty nice footwork, how he defends Hastert in one breath, and blames the kids - also known in legal terms as "the victims" - in the next.

Let's just say if the rest of this mess hasn't left you feeling like you need 2 piping hot showers to get the sleaze off you, well Chris Cannon will.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Part III

Ok, it's time for another word. Now this word I have used in the past, but it was used as an example of a long, smarty-pants word in a conversation with my mother and I finally stumped her - but only for a second. So here you go...

Word #3
protuberance something, such as a bulge, knob, or swelling, that protrudes.

Used in a sentence: Is that protuberance a gun in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?

NOTE: Of course, he was just glad to see me - wink.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Now All We Need is a Gondola

While logging on to my interweb today, I found some nice news about my lovely hometown. It seems Ogden Canyon was voted one of the 10 best places to see fall foliage in the country. That's right, the whole country.

For anyone who has ever driven the canyon during the months of September and October, this will come as no surprise. It is breathtaking. But it's nice to be noticed - people are always talking so much about stupid New England in the Fall, that I thought we'd never get our time to shine.

So, come to Ogden and view our lush reds, our vibrant oranges, the inspirational hole where the mall once stood, and the eye-popping yellows. And while you're here, take a tour of the gondola route. You'll be lifting Ogden in no time.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Random Thoughts

It's been crazy around here, so I have been neglecting my numerous readers (honestly, I may be up to 10 people now!). A thousand apologies.

I haven't got the energy to think of anything important enough to write, so I will just give you a list of my various thoughts as of late...

- People cannot be counted on for anything. It's true - people agree to hold positions of responsibility or complete a project and then come up with dozens of reasons to not follow through. I hate people.

- If you are driving on the freeway or highway and it is sunny, you should go the speed limit. Seriously, the cops should pull you over for doing 50 in a 55 on a clear day.

- My kids will never go to sleep on the first try. Why do we even have a bed time??

- I have a weekly meeting at work. This week we spent at least 10 minutes discussing bathroom issues: smears and procedures for clogged toilets. (There is an entire list of things like this that happen at my work.)

- My husband is no more capable of doing my daughters' hair or dressing them in matching clothes than he is of operating a nuclear reactor.

- The Red Sox and the Democrats have been the loves of my life - and yet, they have been the main source of my frustration and heartbreak. Both groups will always find a way to screw up even the biggest of leads.
Note: I am disenfranchised with the Democrats, but I will always believe in the BoSox. They'll be back once they get a bullpen... and an outfield... and a better back up catcher. Only 84 more years.

- There is nothing good to eat that does not contain milk, wheat or red meat. I haven't had a cheeseburger in 6 weeks and I'm ready to kill someone. I miss eating chocolate without a sense of foreboding.

- Finally, my reproductive organs suck. Except for the 3 times they actually succeeded in reproducing, they have done nothing but cause me pain and piss me off. This should explain the tone of this post.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Part II

Ok, it's time for another word. Check the previous post (Part I) for the genesis of this discussion, but long story short: my first word in this series helped my cousin with her crossword puzzle the next day, so I thought I'd better keep it up.

Word #2
ameliorate to improve or make better.
Used in a Sentence: Eris' intelligent use of the word "prevaricate" helped to ameliorate her cousin's progress on the crossword puzzle.


Monday, September 18, 2006

Goodbye to a Hero

There's not a whole lot I can say about this, except Governor Ann Richards is my hero. I have loved her since she spoke of Bush 41's "silver foot." This is a loss to every woman who not only believes, but knows, that she can contribute something and change the world for better.

One thing is for sure, wherever she is, the men are being kept in check.

Bye, Ann

Sunday, September 17, 2006

I'm So Proud

Apparently, someone likes what I've been doing. Click on the title of this post and see...

Words I Should Have Been Using All Along: Part I

I am going to keep a list of words I am learning in my GRE vocabulary review. Not a general list, but one that contains words I wish I had been using already because they just fit a particular person or thing in my life.

Word #1:
Prevaricate: to speak equivocally or evasively, i.e., to lie.
Fitting sentence: That man is a prevaricating NINCOMPOOP.

Feel free to add your own words. It will help me build my vocabulary.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Pythagoras Should Burn

Eris has been missing. There is a reason: I am preparing to take the GRE in 5 weeks. You may ask, "But Eris, did you not already take an entrance exam for graduate school?" I would answer, "Shut the fu** up and help me with this word problem!" I freaking HATE MATH!

I received my MS from Utah State University (Go Aggies!). A great school, a great program, and a great experience. Even better, USU accepted an entrance exam that is not the GRE. I happily took this exam because it had less math. Yes, I'm just that lazy.

Well now it's come back to bite me in the buttocks - both of 'em. I am applying for doctoral programs at 2 universities, and wouldn't you know it, they require the GRE. So I have purchased a book with practice tests and a CD. I have purchased flash cards with math problems and vocabulary words. I have been buried in the math review sections and I have just about gone bald.

I hate math. I hate everything math stands for. Consequently, I hate astronomy, chemistry, and anything even tangentially related to these topics. I would like to find the SOB who came up with the idea of word problems and shove an abacus up their ...

but I digress. I am preparing to take the GRE.

Pray for Eris.

Quick note:
When I revealed the two schools I am applying for, my mother was non-plussed about the out-of-state option, which is the ideal, perfect, dreamy program for what I want to do. Anyway, I accused her of being less than a feminist for trying to get me to stay in Utah for my kids. She was forced to analyze her objection and happily called me 1 hour later to tell me that she still didn't want me to go, but not because I 'm a girl. It's because she doesn't want me to take the grandkids. Basically, I could jump off a bridge and she'd be fine, as long as she got her A, D, and J time.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Five Years

God Bless the Whole Wide World. Amen

Sunday, September 03, 2006

What I've Learned

While I doubt I can offer as much worthwhile items as Homer J. Simpson , I have some things I have learned as well.

- Finishing college is easy, as long as you have a loose timetable.
- I don't have the energy to chase after annoying people.
- As long as you have checks or a credit card, you always have "money."
- Any job in customer service is simple, as long as you don't have to deal with the general public.
- Everyone just needs to give me a second to think.
- Lunch dates are never as great as you planned.
- When someone in a suit looks at you for more than 5 seconds, it is never good.
- Husbands will do almost anything for you in exchange for a look at a boob.
- Children will only get sick on the weekend or on a holiday, but never when the doctor is in and has a moment.
- Dogs can heal anything that hurts, especially your heart.
- Most things that are good for you in the long run, suck in the now (Yes, I am talking to you, exercise.)
- Three letters that are never in a good sentence: STD.
- Dinner with my grandma will always include this sentence: "Oh, you remember insert name here. You knew them when you were 4."
- Time spent with my sister will include three things: laughing at inappropriate stories, at least one bruise, and an occular strain from rolling my eyes at her.
- You will never catch a bouncy ball on the first bounce.
- Being around my mother will ultimately force me to reexamine some decision I have made.
- Children do not know how to whisper.
- Voting for a Texan will lead to ruination - LBJ, George W. Bush, case closed.
- There is no more futile exercise than cleaning my house. 3 kids + 2 dogs = always messy.
- Having really good friends will make life easier.
- Your mom really was right. Damn!
- There is nothing wrong in the world that could not be made right with a new pair of shoes.

Ok, now share what you've learned.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

My New Favorite Word

I spent a long weekend away last week. I went to beautiful Santa Maria, CA to see my adorable grandparents. The beauty of the trip was this: I had them all to myself. I spent 4 days looking through old scrapbooks and listening to them tell stories about how they met, his service in the Army Air Corps during WWII and the adventures they had raising 6 kids. Also, I was introducing baby Dorothy to Grandma Dorothy (after whom she is named).

Basically this post will be dedicated to miscellaneous items of interest from my trip. Note: the items are of interest to me, not necessarily to you, the reader.

* My grandparents met on a blind date. They fell in love and corresponded while he served in the Pacific during WWII. I got to see the telegram he sent her when he was discharged.

* My grandmother’s wedding dress was made from a silk Japanese parachute my grandpa brought back from the war. Can you say, "One-of-a-kind?"

* Apparently, my birthplace is such a hole it isn’t even fit for reference on a t-shirt. Thanks.

* Contrary to my mother’s insistence, I was a FAT little girl. I have viewed ample photos to back this up. Note to Mom: I grew out of the fat when I was 7, so you can accept it and move on.

* Birds eat out of my grandfather’s hand – literally.

* Babies will cry at church, regardless of the denomination.

* The home my grandparents live in is pretty much a live version of the Antiques Road Show. My grandma has lived in that house since she was 6 years old. You wouldn’t believe the stuff in there!

* Naming a child after someone is a virtual guarantee that said child will mimic that person in many ways. Case in point – my great-grandmother wrote in my grandmother’s baby book that she was a colicky, difficult child. Baby Dorothy is a notoriously difficult child. Reference the photo of her above.

* My grandfather and I have the ability to watch baseball in any form. We spent a good amount of time enjoying several games on t.v.

And finally: I have a new favorite word. This word will be used to refer to individuals whose behavior is completely beyond reason; a person who cannot be trusted and is to be approached with only the greatest of caution. The new code word for someone we don’t like, my new favorite word: NINCOMPOOP.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

If Only I were Catholic...

At least he's a Democrat. I was sweating bullets that I'd be Reagan!

You Are Most Like John F. Kennedy

You live a fairy tale life that most people envy.
And while you may have a few dark secrets, few people know them.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Breaking in the Newbie

I had the best night this week. I took my sweet little nephew (age 13) to his first indoor concert.

First, the back-story:
2 months ago my nephew asked me if I had ever heard of this new group called the Red Hot Chili Peppers. New? Um, I have only been rocking to RHCP since 1988! (Hello, Anthony? Yeah, I want you!)

So I find out RHCP is making a visit to Salt Lake and I work my toosh off for tickets. Long story short - after bidding for 5 days on tickets in Section 19, I lose them!! But I fortuitously find tix in Section 2... lucky!

OK. So we get to the concert. Some of my favorite quotes: "How did you get these seats?!" "Will they play only new stuff?" "Can I get a shirt?" and my favorite, "Are those all speakers?!?!"

So my nephew met Concert Eris. Concert Eris wears makeup and talks to strangers in an effort to get back stage. Concert Eris wears tight shirts (note to RHCP: your original fans are in their 30s and 40s. It's time to get more than freaking baby-T's for the ladies!). And Concert Eris jumps up and down, screams wildly and acts out generally.

There really is no point to this post, except to say this: It was so much fun to see the look in his eye, his gaping jaw, and his utter enjoyment of the moment. He stood perfectly still, mouth open for most of the night (see example in photo to the left).

But he wants to go to more concerts with me, which is awesome cuz he's my favorite pal and I want him to feel like he can hang with me, and talk to me if he needs someone to talk to. And let's face it, with me to play with, the kid's destined for greatness.


You're Totally Sarcastic
You sarcastic? Never! You're as sweet as a baby bunny.Seriously, though, you have a sharp tongue - and you aren't afraid to use it.And if people are too wimpy to deal with your attitutde, then too bad. So sad.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

The Universal Language

I have a great job. I do fundraising and public relations for a non-profit group that serves adults with developmental disabilities. The great thing is that my office is in one of our centers, so I get to interact with our clients all the time – and they are awesome!

Something happened at work today:

I was walking down the hall. A door flew open and out walked “Sue,” one of our clients. I smiled and said, “Whoa! Hi, Sue.” She just kept walking...

then she flipped me off.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Join Eris, Won't You?

My friends:

While abusing my high-speed wi-fi connection, I stumbled across this very interesting blog. It's the unofficial blog of the Utah State Senate majority and as you can imagine it is overwhelmingly populated with ultra-conservatives.

Before I knew it, I was commenting back, and now I am a lone debater with a State Representative. Oh, and some people I am fairly certain go to my church.

It's been an eye-opener to see how easily this man has selectively chosen which of my points to flacidly argue against and how quickly he truncates or misrepresents my statements. I'm having a blast!

So I am issuing this invitation. Click on the title of this post and take a gander at what our representatives are trying to do. If you agree with Eris and think they ought to mind their own male business, consider leaving a thoughtful comment. If you agree with Representative Ray ... well, ok.

Monday, August 07, 2006

New Shoes for You, Mr. President

I spent the 2004 election with a 4’ x 3’ John Kerry sign in my window. I admit it, I’m a partisan. But regardless of his party, I just felt that John Kerry was the best man for the job. He had prepared for the presidency his whole life: military service, foreign policy and legislative oversight in the Senate. What a political dreamboat.

He was brilliantly labeled a “flip-flopper” by the Bushies. Combine that with the fact that Democrats could steer just about any campaign straight down the crapper, and you get 4 more years.

And look at us now, stuck in the middle of about 73 foreign policy disasters – how embarrassing to have the Bushies in charge. It’s tragic to think the rest of the world believes that these blindly optimistic, unilateral action loving cowboys (and girl, Secretary Rice) actually represent American values.

In honor of foreign policy disaster #2. Lebanon, first runner-up to #1. Iraq, I proudly present the president with these flip-flops. Not one week ago the Bush line was “No cease fire. It would be unwise to declare a hasty peace.” What’s that? People dying… Well, that’s sad, but BLAH, BLAH, BLAH!!! Now, with no explanation and maintaining that this is not a change in course, the White House and the State Department are supporting a cease fire.

What bothers me is not the blind support of 3 weeks of death and destruction in the world’s most fragile region. It’s the arrogance. The refusal to admit a mistake. The United State’s position in the world is precarious, to say the least, but American pressure in the UN may have helped speed this process along. We just wasted time and lives. Good luck getting Lebanon back into shape.

Of all the things that make me want to scream and pull out all my hair, this kind of arrogance is right up there. It runs just ahead of mispronouncing words you base a war on and filling a cabinet with nincompoops and nitwits. All I can say is, “Save me Jeebus, from the next 2 years!”

Friday, August 04, 2006

Quit Touching My Stuff

August 5 is Sisters Day. I am lucky enough to have 4 sisters of many varieties, shapes and sizes.

I have 2 step-sisters who live far, far away: Michigan and Texas. We don't get to see each other much, but they are wonderful women whom I very much look up to.

I have a younger sister, Courtney. She is 17 and quite the spitfire. As you know, when you are 17 your life is busy and full of friends, work and lots of other stuff. When faced with the choice between friends and your 30-year-old sister, friends almost always win. So I don't get to see her as much as I'd like.

Finally, I have an older sister. Only 3 years apart, we grew up together. Jennifer and I are complete opposites. One tall and blonde; the other not tall and not blonde. One looks just like the mother; the other just like the biological father. Personalities? Well, let's just say that we are more different in this respect than we are in appearance.

The important thing is that Jennifer and I have grown close. Yes, we beat each other up for about 18 years. We are polar in every sense of the word. But we are sisters and that is something.

So today, in honor of the women I am proud to call "Sister" I leave this message:
Thanks for keeping me honest, and for keeping me laughing. And quit touching me!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Problem with the American Dream

Hooray!! Recently the House of Representatives voted to raise the minimum wage for the first time in 10 years! This is great news for those of us in the real world. Studies have shown that when the minimum wage goes up, other wages go up, as well. So we're looking at a future that holds an extra dime or two.

Hold the confetti.

In a "compromise" our representatives also voted to eliminate the Estate Tax (cleverly dubbed the Death Tax by Republicans), which takes a small chunk out of the bundles millionaires leave their kids. According to the House of Representatives, the needy heirs of our nation's wealthy should be spared the indignity of having to pay taxes on their inheritance.

This is important because, as you are well aware, the American Dream means we will all be millionaires one day. Clearly, the GOP and all of Utah's delegation (including pseudoDemocrat Representative Jim Matheson), are just looking out for all of us future millionaires.

Now I'm not sure what bugs me most about this. So let's review some of the more bothersome aspects:

1. This bill was passed with the House's full knowledge that the Senate wasn't going to touch it with a 10-foot pole. Thanks for working on that boys, instead of spending time on anything with a snowball's chance of actually becoming a law!
2. The Estate Tax is worth about $300 billion to the federal budget - boy wouldn't that be helpful in paying for, oh, I don't know, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, aid to people with disabilities, Community Development, FEMA, Homeland Security, and on and on and on.
3. About 5 in every 1,000 Americans pays this tax. Only 33 of the people who paid the tax in 2004 were black. Think of 1,000 people you know: 5 of those poor folks. Oh, excuse me, rich folks will have to actually PAY A TAX. Save us all!

Boy, am I glad the House of Representatives is there to help me out. No more will I worry about my $2 million inheritance being bit into by those pesky social services and vital government programs. Whew.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Eris Better Get Used to the Heat

Ok, so I like to think of myself as a nice person. I always say, "Thank you." I enjoy sending little notes of appreciation or cards just for fun. You know: generally, a thoughtful person. But this... this is my weakness: I sometimes think mean, superficial thoughts about people. If you have the same problem, please join me in enjoying this article: Seriously, it's like they had a microphone in my head, recording my inner monologue.

Quick Thought: I am reading the New Testament and based on the whole love-your-neighbor/beware-the-beam-in-your-eye thing I am fairly sure I am going to Hell. But at least I'll have cute shoes and I won't be wearing anything with a large floral print.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Eris Will Drive Over You, Damnit!

It was bound to happen: I am overcome with road rage. I have a one-hour commute to my job, which means I spend roughly 10 hours in my car every week. I have, in the past, quite enjoyed my commute. Traffic doesn’t bother me too much and I appreciate the chance to listen to Radio From Hell in the morning and NPR on the way home. It’s my “me” time.

Well, yesterday I became a less than nice person on the road. The incident went a like this:
Eris: Oh, there’s an accident 100 yards ahead, I’d better merge into the open lane.
A**hole in Sports Car (AISC): Oh, there’s an accident 100 yards ahead. I’ll drive 90 yards in this lane and then cut someone off at the last minute.
Eris: Look at this yahoo driving past all the other cars, knowing full well he will have to get over. He’s not even signaling or looking to get over! People better make him wait.
AISC: Hmmm. I’m now at the accident. I’ll start merging into the other lane, and then force my way in.
Eris: Oh no you don’t. (Inching the car forward so you could turn a lump of coal into a diamond between my bumper and the bumper in front of me.)
AISC: What?!?! Don’t you know the world revolves around me? I’ll show you. (Pulls behind Eris and flips her off – with both hands.)
Eris: Listen buddy, if I had my way, you’d still be waiting to get in this lane! (Blow him a kiss.)

Not too bad, right? It was very exciting when it happened – and it stayed with me all night. I felt guilty that this guy was mad at me. I wonder if he even entertains the thought that his driving was inconsiderate and Eris was just trying to teach him a lesson. Probably not. His compensating-for-shortcomings car and sunglasses made it pretty clear that he is far too important to be bothered with merging at the proper moment.

So there you have it. I have become a bitter woman on the road. I wonder if they make little Zen gardens for the dash board?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Eris Joins the 21st Century

So I have been married for more than 10 years. In those years we have watched television via "rabbit ears." Yes, you read right: no cable or satellite - nada. We have also ventured out onto the interweb on a dial up connection. It's been a strange and very slow ride.

All that changed yesterday. Much to my displeasure, Keith ordered us up a big helping of Comcast: digital cable and DSL. This wouldn't bother me so much if we were both working - thus living with looser belts. Well, we got the cable and the DSL and I have to say, "I love it!" I am sitting in my family room, laptop on lap, blogging (at the speed of ... let's just say I don't miss watching the screen load up piece my hugging piece), and I'm flipping between VH1 and ESPN.

Last night I watched 2 hours of ESPN and Fox Sports Network. I don't know what I have been doing with my time! Reading? Talking to my family? Whatever. From this moment on, I will be watching the World Series of Pop Trivia, the Daily Show, the Colbert Report, and Sports Center - in that order. All of this, while blogging and IMing. I'll be doing this until my eyes adjust to the screen and I look like Golem from Lord of the Rings.

Now you might say, "But Eris, shouldn't you exercise some self control and turn off the t.v. and computer?" I say to you, "Mind your own damn business. I have to make up for an entire decade of being out of the loop. Now shut up! Joe Buck is calling the game."

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Eris is a Hero

In honor of my comic book nerd husband, I thought I'd give it a shot. Who would've guessed I'd get the one with the crappiest movie?! Although "sexy assasin ninja" does sound an awful lot like me.

You Are Elektra

There's really no superhero with more style than you.
Because who could beat being sexy assasin ninja?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

In the Mood to Celebrate

I live a charmed life. I admit it. Not a lot of tragedy has befallen me, and I am grateful. Last year, I witnessed unholy amounts of tragedy from the front row, the result being I am now much more grateful for the way fortune smiles upon me.

Last night I had a great party with family and friends. I have a wonderful husband who loves me, and he’s not too hard on the eyes. I have 3 adorable children who are all healthy and developing as they should. We live in comfort. And today, I got good news and feel as though I have, once again, avoided tragedy. So I think it’s time to enjoy the people I love.

Tonight Keith and I will go out with friends – have a nice dinner and enjoy good conversation. We will watch a game and just relax. It may not sound like much, but I believe nights like this are what life is meant for. A summer evening in jeans and sandals, eating too much, laughing too loud, smelling the grass, and watching a live sporting event. We will talk about silly things and serious things. We will tell stories we don’t know about each other. And as I sit with my friends I will be thinking of how lucky I am.

Lucky to have my friends.
Lucky to have my family.
Lucky to have it all.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Eris Loves her Puppies

My 2 adorable dogs have looked miserable this summer. We take good care of them, but they always look homeless, and this year they look especially neglected. I think it has to do with the 90 degree weather we had in April (freaking April!!). Regardless of the cause, my dogs have shedded and molted continuously for 3 months.

So last night we took Mabel, the Border Collie, and had to shave her down. She didn’t really enjoy this, but it was either a shave or a summer of sweltering. Have you ever wondered what happens to the hair you shave off a dog? The 72 pounds of fur we took off the dog ended up in two different places: on my shirt and on the back deck – minus the daily poundage she leaves all over my house.

What I have realized this year is that my dogs leave enough hair in my house to make an entirely new dog! Amazingly, the hair gravitates together under one chair in my kitchen. It is reminiscent of the scene in Terminator 2 where the liquid all moves together to reform the robot.

Would we tolerate this type of filth and mess from anything else? Would I allow any other animal to tackle and run over me, leaving bunches and bunches of hair all over me? The answer is no. But the reason I do is simple: my dogs are my comfort. When I leave, they are always thrilled to see me again – they literally jump up and down at my return! They kiss me when I need it, and even when I don’t. They play with my kids. They have scared away more than one unwanted visitor to my home, and they welcome wanted visitors with leaps and licks. They are my source of unconditional love.

So I will shave them. I will pick gross things out of their hair. I will forgive them when they eat a shoe or pee on the floor (this almost never happens). Because I know that nothing I do will come close to giving them as much and they have given me.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Hastily Awaiting Your Return

Ok, so as I mentioned, I have 3 fabulous friends, each of whom fills a unique role. Faith is my memory. Best friends for nearly 20 years, we know each others’ secrets; when the other is lying; and all the embarrassing stuff we’ve each lived through. Casi is my mirror. She has 2 ½ kids and works out of the home and we are both married to wonderful, adolescent-ish men (defined as a man who spends more time on a gameboy or computer game than reading a book or talking to adults). With such similar lives, I have the chance to view my life through hers. It’s quite reassuring.

This leads us to Leah: my brain. I just feel smarter when she’s around. We can talk about politics and baseball – she is a Yankee fan :( but I have learned to love her anyway. GO SOX! Anyway, she has been away for 2 weeks. 2 WEEKS!! I have missed her, and find it very inconsiderate that she was gone for so long. So what if she was visiting family and attending weddings and spending important time in special places – I want her here! I bought a book about baseball statistics and how there are all these new methodologies and ideas in how to better assess and predict a players’ performance. She’d love it. Is she here to discuss it? Nooooo.

It is funny how when someone goes away, your mind makes it seem like so much more time than it really is. I can remember things I did at work 2 weeks ago like they were yesterday – it went by soooo fast. But it seems like it’s been months since I saw Leah. Plus, it’s harder to go kickboxing with no one to drag my sorry butt there.

So here is the new rule: no one goes away for more than 3 days without prior written notice. Even better: next time, take me with you!

Friday, June 30, 2006

Eris Takes a Break, but Freaks Out First

Today is Friday. The day before the best day of the week: Saturday. Saturday is the best for two reasons: 1. No work; and 2. No church. (Church is great but 9 am comes very early.)Anyway... this weekend, thanks to some creative work scheduling, will last 4 glorious days. Just the thought of how lazy I will be is enough to make me giddy.

I have looked forward to this weekend for months, literally, but I have also dreaded it. My biological paternal family is busy imbibing with and insulting each other at a family reunion - fun to watch, if you can forget the fact that these people share your gene pool.

I have decided to forego the experience of avoiding the people who don't count me as family (at the expense of missing out on seeing my grandparents whom I adore), but my sister has chosen to join in full boar. So I sit here, 2 states away, obsessing over these people and what they are doing and saying. Not just about me. But I also worry about what my sister is experiencing. Will she be ok? Will she get her feelings hurt? Will she come back a reunited prodigal daughter?

Family is a funny thing. They have the unique ability to make you feel strongly. In only a few minutes my mother can make me feel like the best of people. With one word my dad (not to be confused with the biological father) can make me feel like the smartest of people. And with nothing my biological father can make me feel just that, like nothing.

To cope with this weekend, and the rest of my life, my mother has suggested a cathartic experience. I have decided to trust her on this. She's usually right. So tonight, I will smash the hell out of a huge jewelry box. After that, I should be something: healed.

Smashing the hell out of things is fun! Especially when you use a hatchet. I am feeling completely released. Mom was right - AGAIN.

This is amazing. Still smiling.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Eris is Looking Good

So after 2 weeks of effort, I finally got in for a cut and color. I don't know what it is, but just having a trim and my color touched up makes me feel like a completely new woman. It's awesome!

I work 45 miles away from home, which means I spend an hour in the car every morning and night - with 8 hours of work in between. I love my job - I love where I work - but it makes for a long day. So when I get the chance to have my hair done it makes me feel so much better.

Ladies, you can back me up here. Getting your hair done, a massage, buying new underwear or some cute new shoes - they all end up making you feel fabulous. Now before I get hate mail from angry feminists, let me make it clear that I do not wish to be judged by my appearance. As a proud feminist, I believe strongly that appearance should not matter (and I say that as a leggy blonde with an ample bossom). But, as much as it pains me to say it, I feel better when I think I look pretty.

What I'm saying is we all need to feel good about ourselves, and knowing we look good is a great start. So look out world: You'll never stop me - I have highlights!

Your Hair Should Be Red
Passionate, fiery, and sassy.You're a total smart aleck who's got the biggest personality around.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Eris says, "Hello!"

To introduce - I have 1 husband (Fabulous Keith), 3 kids (J. 8, A. 3, D. 1), and 2 dogs (Mabel and Bingo). I have a job I love - fundraising and PR for a non-profit group. I have 3 friends I cannot live without (Casi, Faith and Leah). And I have several other committments that add up to a life of chaos.

So the theme of the blog is Defending Eris - the Greek goddess of chaos and mayhem. Eris was maligned by the male authors of history as a bitch who loved making trouble. So, she probably was a bitch - aren't we all? But the problem is, Eris becomes the scapegoat for anything and everything. Not to mention that people tend to forget the basic fact that chaos is progress - without it, we are just sitting still, watching nothing.

This is my credo. I live in chaos, therefore I live in progress. Try to keep up, would ya?