Thursday, May 31, 2007 

Where we were going to be in 10 years-- an update.

I used to have bad insomnia, and lately it has been revisiting me. It's not as bad as it was before-- I used to be up for days at a time, and then when I fell asleep I could never wake up to the sound of an alarm. I've just been lying awake for a long time at night, and it's probably just because I sleep too late during the day. TH gets home from work at 12:30, and then we sit around and he unwinds until at least 2:00. He gets up for work at 9:30, and sometimes I get up with him, but sometimes I stay in bed longer. I should really stop staying up with him and sleeping late, but I like to see him when he gets home. That's when he's his most talkative, usually. I get to hear all the stories of the crap that's happened in the ER that night. He doesn't work in the ER, but he sees all the diagnoses on a computer screen that tells him what drugs to make. There are more knife and gunshot wounds happening in Hattiesburg, Mississippi than the local media lets on. Way more.

Last night while I was lying in bed not sleeping, I decided to call my friend SD, who works at night. She's a friend from way back. We grew up on the same road and spent every waking minute together being tomboys until a little thing called puberty came along and wrecked our plans to build the world's most gigantic treehouse. (Actually, we did get part of one built, but it became a place for people to smoke pot and make out instead of the innocent wonderland we'd had in mind while building it.) Anyway, SD told me she has been getting phone calls from a guy who used to come to our town every summer from Alaska. His grandmother lived down the road from us, and he spent several weeks with her every year. He was my first ever boyfriend. We kissed. We even had a wedding ceremony on his grandmother's porch when we were kids. SD was the preacher. He was my first crush. Then he grew up and spent seven years smoking crack and hopping trains. That was the update. He's in recovery now, in a halfway house in Alaska, running up long distance bills to call his childhood friends in Mississippi.

SD had more updates on childhood friends. Our other friend, DT, has been in a downward spiral since...well...since she was 12. (That's what self-absorbed parents produce.) Now she's doing meth and making porns.

As we got older we used to wonder out loud what would become of each of us. We tried to make predictions about where each person would be in ten years. SD was most likely to stay in the neighborhood. She did for a long time, and only left when she had no other choice. SH, another friend, was most likely to do something productive and have a good career. She's a nurse now. My sister was most likely to have kids. She does. I was most likely to leave town, and I did as soon as I turned 18. We laughingly joked that DT would be most likely to get pregnant or become a porn star. She got pregnant during her senior year of high school, and now has apparently fulfilled the latter prophecy.

I thought we were only joking.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007 

Good excuse


Tuesday, May 29, 2007 

comes around

Last week several people promised to call me today with a definite "yay or nay" after the interviews I had. No calls yet. But I did get a call from someone else who wants to interview me, so there's something new on the horizon.

I wish some of the people who have already interviewed me would call back and offer me a job. Then I could say, "Well, I'm still interviewing. I'll have to get back with you."

That would feel good.

Sunday, May 27, 2007 


Bloggers hate weekends. All the readers who usually waste time reading blogs at work are nowhere to be found. This weekend will suck extra, since none of you work slackers will be on the job Monday.

We joined a church, and weren't members for five minutes before someone came up to me, said they'd heard I was a teacher, and asked me if I would work at Vacation Bible School. I loved going to that kind of stuff when I was a kid, but hated helping my mother teach it when I was a teenager. It amounted to babysitting 25 kids for four hours for free, and I absolutely resented being forced to do it. Today I started to tell them that I couldn't do it because I'm not certified in coloring, crafts, or naptime, but I didn't. I agreed to do it, and will be teaching Bible stories to fifth grade boys for a week next month. It was either fifth grade boys or third grade girls, and there is no creature on the earth more needy, whiny, and generally unlikable than the female third grader. Give me the boys, I say.

My search for the perfect vacation destination continues. Stewed Hamm thinks he can help me find a place, and I'll be milking him for information in the near future. For now, this is the most likely prospect. Every time I do a search, I end up pulling this one up again and again. I can't tell much about the cabin from those pics, but it's obviously right by the water, and location is more important than looks or amenities in this case. This place in Branson comes up again and again as well. I think it would be okay to be around 3 other cabins, because most people are going to be gone canoeing during the day anyway, and we might make some friends to grill with at night.

Buckle up. Another sudden change of topic straight ahead.

Last week I went to a job fair, and ran into my niece there. Not my cute 4 year old niece. My 29 year old niece. The one I usually refer to as my sister-in-law because she's a year older than me and calling her my niece is strange. (TH's sisters are my mother's age. He was a late arrival.) Anyway, she quit teaching a year ago because she hated it, but her career switch didn't go as planned and now she's trying to teach again. We interviewed for the same job, and they had each of us sign a letter of intent. She's got more experience than I do. I started to make a joke here about having her killed, but that would be tasteless. Everyone knows I don't have the money.

Think I'll go sell some stuff on Ebay now.

Saturday, May 26, 2007 

The Honest Interviewer

Sensing that my name was about to be called, I did a quick assessment of my appearance and picked a piece of fuzz from my sleeve. The secretary showed me in, and directed me to a table which was occupied by four persons. As I approached the table, the white lady stood and announced that she had a meeting, then rushed out of the room, smiling politely at me on her way out. I took my place in the plastic chair across the table from the three remaining people.

To my left, there was a skinny black woman in a hot pink pants suit. According to her nametag, she was the guidance counselor, and her name was Ms. Hanes. She was slouched down in her chair with her chin resting on her hand. When she didn't look like she was about to fall asleep, her eyes were floating around the room at everything except me, the interviewee. In the middle was a broad shouldered white man with a square jaw. He was beginning to lose some of his hair, but he was handsome. His jacket was thrown over the chair behind him, and his tie looked like it had been loosened at least three interviews earlier. His nametag identified him as the Principal, Mr. Schwartz. To his left-- my right, was another black lady. This woman was wearing a nice brown business suit, and her nametag said she was the Assistant Principal. Her name was Ms. Black.

I sat silently for several minutes while Mr. Schwartz scribbled something onto the previous applicant's paperwork. I noticed that he looked very tired. Not just from the day's work, but tired in a deep, lasting way. It struck me as odd that such a powerful body would be inhabited by someone who was completely beaten down and worn out. I silently pondered the extreme stresses of the job, and wondered what I would look like after twenty years of teaching.

To break the tension, I made a comment about it finally being the end of the school year. Ms. Hanes grunted, and shifted in her seat. Ms. Black smiled. Mr. Schwartz scooted his stack of papers to the side, took the green file folder from my hand, and began the interview.

"Good morning, I'm Principal Schwartz."
"Nice to meet you. I'm Ann McHill."
"Nice to meet you, Mrs. McHill. I see you're interested in the Language Arts position."
"Yes, sir."
"Okay, why don't you start by telling us a little bit about yourself."
"Well, I'm from north Mississippi, and I graduated from Southern Miss in 2004. In 2005, I started teaching at Underachiever High School in Cottonville, Mississippi, where I taught seventh and eighth grades Language Arts and Reading. In 2006 I got married and moved back to south Mississippi, and I'm interested in teaching Language Arts or English again, either in middle school or high school."

While I was talking, Mr. Schwartz's attention shifted back and forth between me and someone who was apparently standing in the doorway behind me. I glanced at Ms. Hanes, whose attention was on the blank wall to her right, then back to Mr. Schwartz, who was picking up my resumé.

"So you've taught for one year already then, correct?"
"Yes sir."
"And where did you teach?"
"At Underachiever High in Cottonville. In the Mediocre County School District."
"And what did you teach there?"
"Seventh and eighth grades Language Arts and Reading."
"Well, let me tell you a little bit about what we're looking for. I need a teacher..." He glances behind me again, then looks back down at the resumé in front of him. "...I need a tenth grade English teacher. Tenth grade is a subject testing area, as you know, and I need someone with experience who can prepare the students for the test. It's very important for our uh, pass the test, uh...if our...we...if our school is to be successful. So tell me what experience you've had in preparing students for state testing."
"Seventh and eighth grades have to take the Mississippi Curriculum Test, and I prepared my students for that. The curriculum for Language Arts in middle school is very similar to the curriculum in tenth grade. I've looked at the tenth grade framework, and it's basically just more in depth if you compare it to what I've already taught. I'm familiar with the state test. I began preparing my middle school students for their test early in the year, and they did a good job on it. My eighth graders' test scores were higher the year I taught them than they had been the previous year in seventh grade. I'm confident I can prepare students for the tenth grade test.

As I spoke, I tried to make eye contact with each person, but Ms. Black was the only one paying attention to me. Ms. Hanes was rubbing her eyes, and Mr. Schwartz was looking around the room and scribbling onto a notepad absentmindedly. When he realized I had finished talking, he nodded and started talking again.

"Uh. Tell me about your classroom management plan. Or, no...tell me how you handle discipline."
"I try to create an environment that encourages the students to.."
"You know what? Just tell me the hardest discipline problem you had last year."
"A general problem, or a specific incident?"
"Okay. I had a student who intentionally disrupted class by whatever means necessary, and I tried to contact his parents, but couldn't. One morning when I had duty, I saw him in the cafeteria. When he walked by me, I greeted him and started up a little conversation with him. I basically told him that I was looking forward to seeing him in class that day, and asked him how he was doing. I think it surprised him that I showed him some respect, and although he was never a star student, he never disrupted my class again."
"That's a very touching story, Mrs. McHill," Mr. Schwartz said with a deep sigh.
"Well, I learned something important from it."
"Very touching, indeed."

Ms. Hanes looked at me long enough to roll her eyes.

"Do you have any questions you'd like to ask us?"
"Yes. How is the class schedule set up?"
"Block schedule. Ninety minute classes."
"How large are the classes?"
"You'll have at least 27 students in each class, for ninety minutes per class. We are trying to set up some remedial classes so that we can catch some of the kids who we feel are unlikely to pass the state test. You may have to teach a remedial class the second semester, once we've identified those students. That is if the school board approves the program, and they won't, because it might mean we'd actually help some students."
"Are there any after school tutoring programs for them?"
"After school programs? Cute. No. Look, Mrs. McHope,"
"It's McHill,"
"Fine, McHill then. Nobody would even show up for that. To sum up our school, it's basically the worst possible situation. Block schedule. Huge classes. You won't have many resources or any help to deal with the kids who don't keep up. You'll be expected to prepare them for the test anyway though, and your job will depend on it."
"Maybe the remedial class will help."
"Probably not. Nobody really knows what the hell to do with these kids. Their parents don't care. Half the teachers don't care. My own guidance counselor just fell asleep, and Ms. Black smiles because she doesn't know what's going on. I've been getting shit on every day since August, and all I want to do right now is wrap this up so I can go drink a bottle of something flammable and hide under my bed for six weeks. Let's get to what's important-- do you plan to call in sick very often?"
"No, sir."
"Good. Because getting subs is almost impossible. Any other questions?"
"Would I have access to a copy machine?"
"Maybe. I can't guarantee it. Okay? Ms. Black, do you have any questions?"
"Good then. Mrs. McHack, we'll let you know something next week. Or, you know...not."
"Thank you for your time, Mr. Schwartz."
"Just leave already."

Friday, May 25, 2007 

Let's make a day of it

Today I had five job interviews.

Hard to believe, isn't it?

It's true. Five. Three middle schools, and two high schools. Three of them seemed genuinely interested. I signed letters of intent at two of those. One was a middle school, and one was a high school. I think I would like to work at the middle school, but I heard the principal is crazy and incompetent. That doesn't discourage me much, because there are as many incompetent principals as there are incompetent teachers. I'll never understand how they manage to get their PhDs. (That's not counting the ones who go to Mississippi Valley. We all know how that works.)

There was another high school that expressed interest, and I'd like to work there. He didn't get me to sign anything, but that doesn't mean anything. He said he would call me next week and give me a definite yes or no.

As for the other two, one said he expects to have an opening, but doesn't officially have one yet. So there's hope there. The other one seemed as disinterested as could be. (I am currently working on a blog post which will basically be a dialogue of what he would've said if he'd said what I could tell he really wanted to say, and what I would've said if I'd been free to tell him what I thought of how he and his assistants were treating me.)

The interviewing took most of the day. I started at 10:00 this morning, and got home after 5:00, but I felt like I'd accomplished something. Time will tell.

"Now if that phone don't ring one more time, I'm gonna lose what's left of my mind."

Thursday, May 24, 2007 

countdown to anniversary #1

The Husband and I are trying to plan a little getaway this summer. We're thinking about renting a cabin on a lake or a river where we would be able to relax, fish, swim, relax, fish, swim, and fish. And possibly drive to a nearby town one night for dinner or something. I suggested Hot Springs, Arkansas, because I have been there before. We also found this place, which looks fabulous. One of the cabins has a waterfall and a natural pool right outside of it, and it's all private. Also, it's built into a natural cave, and one of the rooms has a wall that's formed by the outside of the cave. It's awesome. Of course, that one isn't available again until August, and we're trying to find something for the week of July 23-27. Our anniversary is July 22, but TH is working that day, so we're planning to leave the next day.

Another cabin available through them features bald eagles that nest around it, and a room with a glass ceiling where you can watch dozens of them flying around. But you learn something new every day, and today we learned that bald eagles are migratory and that it's extremely rare to see them in the summer months. So that cabin just became a lot less attractive, especially since it doesn't have any water within walking distance.

I want to have a place where we can have some access to water without being in plain view of too many people. TH is embarrassed of his lack of swimming skills, and I want to get him in the water without him feeling like everyone is watching him flail about. That's why I thought the private little pool would've been perfect. And the nice would that be??

About eight years ago, I went with a group to some place in Arkansas. I can't remember which river it was, but we rented a couple of cabins right by it. The cabins were nothing special-- just a one room deal with a queen size bed and a bunk bed and a window unit air conditioner. You had to walk to a bath house to shower and use the toilet, which wasn't fun, but we were roughing it so whatever. The great thing was that the river was right outside our door. We had a little sandy beach area, and a grill. We fished and swam, and we cooked burgers on the grill. Everything else we ate came out of a can or a cooler. It was great. One day we rented canoes and went down the river, which actually turned out to be a little on the boring side that time. In my experience, canoeing is never just right. It's always like the water is so rough that you can't keep from flipping over ever five minutse and someone nearly drowns, or it's really slow and lame and you basically sit in a canoe for four hours and watch yourselves turn into lobsters. I don't think I would have much success getting TH into a canoe, so fishing is his primary interest. Swimming and playing in the water is mine.

TH says he doesn't want to go to Arkansas. I keep telling him that north AR is great-- it's pretty, and very scenic. But he's got this Arkansas stigma in his head that he can't get past. Missouri might have some suitable places for us. As I've mentioned, I have family in MO-- mostly around Poplar Bluff or Piedmont (?), and have been up there several times for reunions and so forth. There's some river there that we visit every time. I once saved a drowning boy there, and was a hero for a day. I also have a friend who lives in Dexter who says that there are lots of places to rent canoes and camp. Perhaps Hillbilly Mom knows of a place. Everything I can find in and around Branson is very resort-like and "sleeps up to twelve." We ain't that high-fallutin', you know. Besides, only one place says they're by a river. The James River?

Flood me with suggestions, people. All two of you.

The lady who interviewed me at the alt. school told me to call her back yesterday, so I did. The lady who answered the phone said she was busy doing an interview. She said, "I'll tell her you called, but I know she is still interviewing people for that job." Since she had asked me to call her back, I called her again today, and finally talked to her. NOW she says she'll still be interviewing through next week.

Maybe I was a bit presumptuous in saying they would probably offer me the job. There are apparently more people interested in it than I would've guessed. That doesn't bother me as much as being told to call back and then being treated like I'm bothering them. I wish people would just be straight with me. Dream High School hasn't even given me the courtesy of a phone call, even though it has been over a month since they interviewed me, they showed a strong interest on the day of the interview, and I have called back twice to follow up.

So unprofessional!

If something doesn't happen, I'll have to change the name of my blog again. That would also make me the only person I know who made a sincere effort to enter the teaching profession and completely failed.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007 

Three Vultures Collaborate

The various vultures of this world work so hard at ripping my flesh off that I occasionally have to dedicate an entire day to beating them back with a stick. Today is turning out to be one of those days.

My insurance company still hasn't paid a claim that was filed in February. I had a pap smear. They say they're not paying it because I have a pre-existing condition. I had a pap smear. That's the only thing on the claim. It's a routine annual exam. Having a vagina is like having a car-- you have to take it in for an oil change every 3000 miles. It's in the manual. So I have been trying to explain to them that unless having a vagina counts as a pre-existing condition, their reason for denying the claim is bunk.

Of course you can never solve a problem by talking to one person, or one vulture entity. You have to talk to several different companies, piece the bullsh*t together, and try to figure out a solution on your own, since they can't manage it even though it's their 9 to 5 job, not yours.

So the first person I talked to at the insurance company sounded like a young girl. I was frustrated, because this is the third time I've had to call them about this, and I've done everything they've asked me to do and they're still not paying the claim. After ten minutes of listening to b.s., I raised my voice slightly and told the girl that they were just giving me the same excuse over and over again. She decided to put me in my place. This pisses me off-- when some little girl in some nothing job decides that she's gonna flex her muscles and put me in my place. First of all, you don't yell at me, Little Girl says firmly. For the record, I didn't yell at her at all. I barely raised my voice, and only raised it after five minutes of trying to explain something to her that should have been on her computer screen in black and white. Basically the don't yell at me thing is just another avoidance tactic that they're trained to use, in my opinion, so as soon as they use it on me I just say, Your supervisor, please.

Her supervisor was only slightly less mentally challenged than she was, but at least she understood what I was saying, even though the solution was a non-solution.

After that, I had to call vulture number two-- the doctor's office. They have been told three times to re-file the claim with a different code. They claim they've done it all three times, but the insurance company says they're not getting it. My biggest question is this: Why the hell am I the one who has to run back and forth between the two? I don't understand what either one is doing, and making me the go-between girl only further complicates and confuses the matter. The doctor's office files the claim with the insurance company, so why can't the insurance company call them if there's a problem? Because of the fine print that says I'm responsible for the charges if I can't find my way through the bureaucratic kudzu maze, that's why. They've got every reason to make it complicated-- because if I get frustrated and decide to "just pay it," they win. And the doctor's office could care less who pays, as long as someone pays, so they have no reason to help me out. They're all working together to rip me off, I tell ya.

There's a third vulture in this clusterf*ck, and that's Forrest General Hospital. I don't even know why the hell they're the ones sending me the bill and threatening me. They are the employer. The doctor I saw isn't even through them. He's in a separate organization across the street. They do work with that organization (Forrest General makes sure they get lots of business by requiring all of their employees to use them), but if I owe anyone money, shouldn't it be the doctor who saw me?

I'll admit I'm confused-- they've successfully made my eyes cross. But they will NOT get me to just pay it. I've been known to fight this kind of bunk for years. I even win one every once in a while.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007 

Pookie goes to the doctor

This morning I finished the last of my job applications. I still had a few to mail off-- mostly to places I'd really rather not work. I'm starting to think I'll take what I can get. Should be hearing from Hardknock High tomorrow afternoon.

After I got all of those mailed, I went and bought the new Wilco album. I had been waiting for it to be released, but when it finally came out I never had any money in my pocket when I was near the record store. I also wanted to buy a copy for a friend of mine, because she introduced me to the band years ago, and her birthday was the day after the new album came out. So once I had the cds in hand, it was back to the post office for the second time in one day. I'm a good friend, ain't I? Late birthday gifts are better than no birthday gifts, I guess.

This afternoon I had to take Pookie to the vet. It was his first visit, and all of the girls who work there fell in love with him instantly. I don't know if it's his razor sharp claws or his sweet ninja skills, but he has quite an effect on people. We'll see what they think of him when he weighs twelve pounds and is still putting ninja moves on them. They wanted to test him for a bunch of crap that he probably doesn't need to be tested for. When I asked, the girl said it was gonna cost "about $45," which means that it was really gonna cost about $60. It always works that way. You can safely add at least 33% to whatever number they give you. Sweet Tea, my late Boxer, once needed an x-ray that was "about $75," except that it was more like $120. (God rest her precious little dog soul.) The Pook has to return to the vet again in three weeks.

I still miss my dog a lot sometimes, but I have to admit that having such a low maintenance pet is much easier. Of course, Pookie can't be trained to sit or stay or fetch, and he probably wouldn't attack a burglar to defend me, but he's cute, he comes when he's called, and he hasn't chewed through any doors, forced me to take him for long walks three times a day, or mistaken two humans having sex for two humans who want to wrestle with the dog, and jumped in.

As for his relationship with Millay, it's about the same. She's no longer clobbering him every time she sees him, but she wants nothing to do with him. She's always been fairly antisocial, and will probably never fully embrace him, but I'm sure he'll keep trying. I've gotta say I admire his determination-- and his capacity for forgiveness.

The Pook rocks.

Monday, May 21, 2007 

Instant Car-ma

Train Kills Man Trying to Kill Woman
By CHRISTINA ALMEIDA, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES - A man trying to kill his girlfriend by stopping a car in front of an approaching train was himself killed Monday when the train hit the vehicle and launched it into him as he tried to flee, police said.

The girlfriend survived.

The man drove the car in front of a group of other vehicles stopped at a railroad crossing in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Sunland, Officer Mike Lopez said.

The driver, who was seen arguing with his girlfriend, parked the car on the tracks and jumped out, leaving her behind, Lopez said.

A northbound commuter train hit the rear of the car, hurling it into the man. The girlfriend was taken to the hospital, where she was in stable condition, Lopez said.

"She gets hit by a train and lives. He gets hit by his own car and he dies," Lopez said.

The train was heading from downtown to Lancaster in northern Los Angeles County at the time of the 12:08 p.m. crash, said Denise Tyrrell, a spokeswoman for Metrolink.

There were no injuries on the train, which carried 132 passengers and crew members, Tyrrell said. The train had superficial damage.

The train's speed wasn't immediately known. The limit in the area is 79 mph, Tyrrell said. At that speed, it would take one-third of a mile to stop, she said.

It is highly unusual for someone to survive being struck by a train, Tyrrell said. "The train to your car is like your car to a soda pop can. It's just not going to be a fair fight," Tyrrell said.

I say the sumumabitch got what he deserved.


Exercise Haiku

I walk at the park
the skinny bitches pass me
with their tight asses.

Sunday, May 20, 2007 

Movie Night

Last night we rented movies. The local Blockbuster is fairly small, never has anything good on the shelf, and the children who work there are smartasses, so we don't go there. We go to Movie Gallery. They always have more stuff available, and they also sell their used movies and games for cheaper than Blockbuster. Plus they have a 4 for 4 deal, where we can get four movies for four nights. I don't know why we care about that, because we never manage to watch all four, but TH is incapable of renting fewer than four at a time because of the "deal."

Anyway, we each picked one that the other didn't care to see, and then we picked two that we both wanted to see. The two we agreed on were The Last King of Scotland, and Borat.

We watched Borat last night. It was depressing how much time he spent in Mississippi-- a lot of the scenes that were attributed to Texas and other states in the story line were actually shot in Mississippi. The part where he goes to the Holiness Church convention, for example. That was in Mississippi, and I know that because Chip Pickering was shown speaking, and he's one of our Congressmen. I can't imagine why he'd be sucking up to church members in Texas. Also, a woman who The Husband works with is a snake charmer Holiness church member, and she claims she was there when that happened.

I guess he had a much easier time getting acceptance around here, what with all our hospitality. The New Yorkers told him to f*ck off. (New Yorkers are assholes, you know.)

The movie was worth watching, but I didn't think it was as hilarious as everyone claimed.

We just finished watching The Last King of Scotland, and it was disappointing, in my opinion. When making a movie about a dictator who killed 300,000 people, it would be better to focus at least some of the film on that, instead of just hinting at it and then flashing text on the screen at the end of the movie to say how many people he killed. The whole story is about this naive doctor who he almost kills, and in the background of that is this story about him murdering citizens. Then at the end, it's like, "Oh yeah, by the way, while he was playing house with this doctor, he also happened to kill 300,000 people."

It just sucked. I think Hollywood liked it because it was about Africa, and you know how those rich twats love to pretend to give a sh*t about Africa and all the suffering that goes on there.

Earlier this afternoon, we watched the movie that TH picked out. The one I didn't want to see. It was American Hardcore: The History of American Punk Rock. I didn't watch the entire thing, because I was cleaning the house, but I did take a few short breaks to watch the good parts. TH seemed to enjoy it.

The movie I picked out is The Good Shepherd. I love prison movies and spy movies and movies about the government being sneaky, and I think this is a government-being-sneaky movie, so I should enjoy it. I'll be watching it tomorrow while TH is at work.

We went to church tonight (no, really, we did!) and ran into some woman that TH went to high school with. No pressure there. Just his former school mates gathered around me to look and judge and see how he did in the lady department. He was such a hometown hero in his day. Valedictorian, most likely to succeed, blah blah BLAH. Me? I barely got out of high school, then I barely got out of college. I was nominated for funniest freshman, but didn't win, and if I had been voted anything else, it probably would have been most likely to get kicked out of rehab. I'm certain that my former school mates watch Intervention, convinced that they're eventually going to see me.

See? If I made it, I know the little junkies at the alternative school have a shot. Speaking of which, I should be getting a few job related calls this week. If I don't, y'all are going to witness what happens when I'm under too much strain.


My little pets

Let's talk about pet peeves. Okay, okay-- I'll talk, and you'll read.

Those of you who have been coming around for a while know how I used to cringe when someone would pee with the bathroom door open. I've gotten over that since I got married. It doesn't even bother me anymore. When my mom did it, it was nasty. When TH does it, which he rarely does, I pretend not to notice. At least he flushes, and he doesn't have conversations with our cats.

Today I have different pet peeves to discuss. A thing or two has rubbed me the wrong way today, and I need to get it off my chest. It's mostly things people have said. That, and people who PARK IN THEIR FREAKIN' YARDS!

Damn neighbors.

How about when you say you don't know where something is located, like where another town is, for example, and the person you're talking to says incredulously, "You know where that is!" (Then they tell you where it is anyway.) "You know where that is! It's down Hwy 11 past the YMCA!"

Well, now I know. Thanks for acting like I was a retard up until now.

Or when you say you want to do something, whether it be eat at a certain restaurant, watch a movie, take a class-- whatever. And the person says, "You don't want to do that." Or, "You're not going to like that."

One of us knows what I want to do, and I'm thinking it's not YOU, so stfu.

The worst is when someone opens their mouth to enlighten you with a philosophy that they have formed after .08 seconds of thought. In a recent discussion about local police officers writing lots of tickets for minor offenses like broken tail lights, an idiot opened his mouth and said the following: How about you just OBEY the stinkin' LAW, huh? I say if you're too cheap to buy a two dollar bulb and take ten seconds to screw it in, they should be able to write you a ticket and taser you, then beat you Rodney King style! You wouldn't have to worry about it if you just OBEY the stinkin' LAW!

The response I wish I had given? You, sir, are an idiot. I already know what you think about everything else, so don't bother telling me. Your philosophy on the war is that we need to bomb their stankin' asses ta kingdom come. Your plan for our broken educational system is something like Them teachers USED ta teach 'em stuff. Now they too busy teachin' em ta take care 'a trees an' shit! When it comes to child rearing, you say Positive reinfor--WHAT? If the boy steps outta line, I tear that ass up! Simple as that! And the world would be much safer if we shot all criminals on the spot, right?

Yeah, I thought so. Do us all a favor and shut the hell up. Talking that way when you're trying to be funny is one thing. The fact that it's how you really think...well, that's just sad.

In case you can't tell, I have had one of those "I SHOULD have said..." moments that happen five minutes after you have an argument with someone.

None of this was inspired by The Husband, by the way. Well, okay. He does tell me I know where things are when I say I don't, but that's the only one. It was a local idiot who decided the cops should beat people for having broken tail lights. I really hate his particular brand of redneck.

He's the kind of redneck the news camera always finds after the tornado comes through.

Saturday, May 19, 2007 

Assholes in the news

GALVESTON, Texas -- A 19-year-old was arrested and charged after police said his 2-month-old daughter was burned when he placed her in a microwave, KPRC Local 2 reported Wednesday. [Click for more.]


Friday, May 18, 2007 

What works

The Husband is supposed to have a 3 day weekend off every other week, but hasn't had one in a couple of months because he keeps volunteering to work for other people. Unlike Wrong Aid, they don't make him work for free. They have to pay him overtime, and he comes away with almost $1000 when he does it, so it's hard to turn down. Still, I keep telling him he needs to turn someone down every once in a while, just so they don't come to expect him to do it. Does he listen? Of course not. And now they're starting to expect him to say yes, just like I said they would.

He didn't want to work today so he told the scheduling girl no when she asked, and she said, "Nobody else wants to do it, so you have to." He should have said, "Well, I won't be here." Then she would've been SOL, or found someone else. She has no authority over him. She is a pharmacy technician. Anyhow, he did go, of course. He doesn't understand how quickly people will begin to consider you their bitch when you're only trying to be cooperative. The shift he had to cover was 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., which means that when he got off work last night AT MIDNIGHT, he had to come straight home, go straight to bed, and get up at 6 a.m. to work another twelve hour shift-- on top of the 40+ he'd already worked this week.

So now it's 11 p.m. and he's sawing logs at full volume. I'm wide awake. I got up with him at the buttcrack of dawn today and cooked him breakfast, but when he left for work I went straight back to bed and stayed there for a very long time. I'm embarrassed to say how long. Let's just say I almost didn't make it to the bank in time.

Cooked some kickass meatloaf tonight, and turnip greens. No cornbread, though. I ran out of eggs. This was the defining moment of my day.

Have I mentioned lately that I can't wait to get a job?

Thursday, May 17, 2007 

Quick post, because it's on my mind

Last night, I had a disturbing dream. The dream is disturbing mainly because it is very similar to a dream that I had in August of 2001. A dream so vivid that I can remember every detail to this day.

In August of 2001, I had just moved to Hattiesburg, and I was living in a dorm room. One night, I dreamt that I was at my old neighbor's house in Nesbit, which happened to be my childhood friend's grandmother's house. I regarded her as my own grandmother because I spent so much time there. She practically helped raise me along with a few other neighborhood kids, because she was the cool neighborhood gramma who always made us Kool Aid in the summer and let us sit under the air conditioner when ours wasn't working. Anyway, in the dream, I was at her house, which is at the front of a very large piece of land. I was standing on a hill by the house, watching a huge jet airplane that was flying overhead, smoking. I knew it was going to crash. It finally did crash in the pasture behind her house, about 200 yards from where I was standing. There was a huge fireball, and I could feel the heat, even at a distance. All I could think was Oh my God, I can't believe that just happened right in front of me!

I don't have any weird ideas about the meanings of dreams, but I do think that they can happen because of what's going on in our real lives. Usually, I can tell what caused mine. At the time, I thought the dream symbolized anxiety about being away from home and being on my own. You know, as in crash or burn time. Then a month later, after a few very famous plane crashes, it seemed creepy.

Last night, I dreamt that I was at my parents' place. There's a small barn at the back of their property, and I was in the barn with a bunch of people, attending a party that was being held in my honor. I don't know why there was a party for me, but it rocked, and there were some famous people there, including Nancy Grace. (If you're wondering why her name has made two appearances on my blog recently, it's because I'm watching the Phil Spector trial on t.v., so I'm seeing lots of her lately.) During the party, I was concerned about impressing these people for some reason. (Job interviews?) As everyone was getting ready to leave the celebrity barn party, we noticed a plane moving across the sky, smoking. This plane was smaller than the one in the first dream. This was one of those commuter jets that seat 15 or 20 people. It circled around for a while, and we thought it might make a safe landing. Then it started wobbling and crashed right where my parents' house would have been, except the house wasn't there in the dream for some reason. Again, a big fireball, and lots of heat. Lots of disbelief. A stunned Nancy Grace. A pile of smoking wreckage. When the plane blew up, I thought Someone died right then.

After it happened, everyone just sort of stood around for a while, then went about their business. It was like we had only witnessed a car wreck or something, and even though it was shocking it wasn't a huge deal and everyone just wandered to their cars and left.

Job hunt anxiety? More than likely.

Disturbing? Definitely.


After all, it would make for good blogging

A few days ago, I was called by a school district about 40 miles from here, and they scheduled me for a job interview. The lady gave me directions to the school, the name of the school, and the name of the principal. I went to their district's website to get an idea of what kind of place it was, because I had never heard of that particular school. I thought perhaps they didn't understand that I can only teach 7th to 12th graders, and that it was an elementary school or something, because the name of the school was unusual. On their website, there was no information about that particular school or that particular administrator. In fact, there was no information about the school anywhere on the web. I thought maybe it was a new school, and maybe she was a new principal.

When I walked in the front door, there was a man standing at the front desk, and the first thing I noticed was that he had a gun on his hip. He was calling out orders at a gaggle of children in the hallway. It was clear that this wasn't a regular school. Turns out, it was an alternative school. The end of the line for kids who have been kicked out. They go there for a while, and the goal is to eventually get them back into regular school. It's run in a more bootcampish mode, from what I could tell. I'm talking metal detectors, daily body searches, and armed receptionists.

When I first realized where I was, I thought That lady could've at least told me this before she sent me here. But now I'm glad she didn't, because I might not have even gone. Maybe the principal used some hypnosis technique on me or something because this is not the kind of job I was looking for, but as we sat and talked, I started to consider it.

It can't be any harder than what I've already done. In fact, I imagine it would be better. The district where I previously worked did not have an alternative school, nor did they kick students out for any reason. In other words, the worst of the worst were there anyway, except nobody was acknowledging that there was anything wrong, and they definitely weren't doing anything to cut down on the chaos or create a structured environment where teachers could manage the chaos. The school was more similar to a zoo than to a bootcamp. At least in this setting, it's very structured, and they're not taking any crap from the kids.

They didn't offer me the job, but if they do, I'll consider it. My guess is that they probably will offer it to me. Teachers aren't exactly fighting over jobs in alternative schools. Of course, Dream High School still hasn't told me whether I got that job or not but my hope is beginning to dwindle. I hope they let me know before I hear back from Hardknock High.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007 


I've been having lots of weird chance encounters with teachers and students from potential employers lately. Got my nails did today, and did some shopping. (I've been getting by, but I needed something new for interviews.) When I entered the nail shop, there were two teenage girls having pedicures. As I sat with my hands soaking in the solution and waiting, I had the privilege of listening to their conversation, which was excessively loud and mundane. Typical teenager crap. Who's dating who, etc.

Ohmygah, he's 28, and my dad doesn't know, but age is just a number, and God I mean like you're an adult you know, like, you'll be 19 in four months, yeah, and I act a lot older than I am, so, like, it's just not a big deal, I can't wait to get to Cancun, ohmygah, are we going to the tanning bed later!?

Their high school graduation is next week, and they're graduating from the school where I'm hoping to teach. I overheard all of this. They even started talking about the head of the English department, and how they had not had class during the last few weeks because she was busy doing interviews.


Oh yeah. I got my grade today. I got an A. That means I have a 4.0 GPA. Let's see how long I can maintain it. I never had a 4.0 in undergrad. My very first semester, I had a 3.0. It went down dramatically the next semester, and then I spent the next 3 years trying to dig out of a hole. The end result was not impressive. It would rock to keep a 4.0.

Deep Thoughts:

I'm glad Paris Hilton's going to jail. I hope it sucks as bad as jail is supposed to suck.

Nancy Grace takes herself too seriously.

The Mexican Kitchen on Classic Drive in Hattiesburg is over rated in every sense of the word. I'm pretty sure my chile relleno was stuffed with dog food.

So far I've been interviewed by my top two choices, and one of my last resort choices. I hope something happens soon.

Monday, May 14, 2007 

Burgers, Books, Teacher's Dirty Looks

TH and I haven't spent much time hanging out recently, so a few days ago he declared that his next day off, we would spend it doing anything but work. His next day off was today.

We slept until about 9:30, then we lounged around until noon. We were thinking about going to Jackson, but we didn't know what we were going to do when we got there. We decided to go to Stamp's Superburgers. Actually, it was recently renamed Cool Al's. It's a little place just on the outskirts of the 'hood that has famous food. It's not much to look at, but we'd been wanting to try it for a while. It's located next door to one of those get cash til payday places, there's a bar across the street, and maybe a liquor store and a pawn shop. You get the picture. The inside of the place is kinda funky too. The ceiling tiles are brown from getting wet, and the bathroom is unspeakably repugnant. Let's just say I washed my hands a little longer than usual. The yellowed walls are dotted with awards and news articles and reviews of their food.

It's not your typical burger joint. They have a little bit of everything on the menu, from sandwiches to tofu. They even have a vegetarian burger which has been voted the best in Jackson several years running.


I didn't want to over indulge (none of this crap is on my diet, after all), but we were there to try the famous burgers, so I ordered the small classic something or other burger and small home fries. A guy brought my basket of food out to me about ten minutes later. My initial thought was small my ass! It was the biggest burger I've ever eaten, period. TH got the large, and it was huge. The fries were awesome-- they actually cut the potatoes and season them there-- and they gave me a ton of them. I couldn't eat it all, but I came close. It was the juiciest, most delicious burger ever made. I'm glad there's not an Al's in Hattiesburg, or my diet would just have to suck it.

After we finished committing gluttony eating, we went to Lemuria bookstore. I had never been in, but I'd heard that it was fabulous and that it was over rated. It might be over rated, but it was still fabulous. It is what it is-- a big ass bookstore with some kind of restaurant/coffee shop attached to it. (Didn't check that part out.) If there are Lemuria fans, it's because it lacks the corporate feel of Books a Million or Barnes and Noble. It's more comfortable. And while it's certainly not their only focus, they have tons of books about Mississippi and the South, which I enjoyed perusing through.

They also have one other key thing that those other book stores lack-- a substantial poetry section. If you go to Barnes and Noble and look at the poetry section, they've got the same stuff every time. They've got John Donne, Shakespeare, Wallace Stevens, Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath, Robert Frost, T.S. Eliot-- the big ones, you know. The ones that you read in college. Other than that? Not much. At Lemuria I found two books of poems by people I had never heard of. One of them is the English chair at Millsaps College in Jackson, and I noticed that after I'd sat there and read about five poems and decided to buy it. The name of the book is Rib Cage, by Greg Miller. The other book I bought is Useless Virtues, by T. R. Hummer. I can't comment on either yet, because I've only read enough to decide to buy their books. My point is that I'll definitely go back to Lemuria just because of the poetry section.

After we returned to Hattiesburg, we lounged around some more, then we took our nightly walk. We increased our distance by about half a mile tonight. A couple of teenagers were sitting on the playground equipment at the center of the park, smoking cigarettes and talking. One time when we walked by, the girl said something rude in our general direction. Since it was unclear whether it was actually directed at us, and since I'm not in the habit of beating up (or cussing out) teenagers in the park, I didn't say anything. TH didn't hear it because he was listening to an ipod. There were half a dozen police officers nearby, standing around their cruisers and talking, so I was almost hoping she'd speak up again. I'm pretty sure they were smoking more than cigarettes.

I have a job interview tomorrow, but I stillllllll haven't heard back about the one I'm really hoping to get. I'm beginning to broaden my horizons a little, if you want to call it that, by pressuring some of the less desirable districts to interview me.

Teacher shortage? What teacher shortage?

Sunday, May 13, 2007 

Jimmy ray done got that GED, gone get him a job at tha prison!

This story is a week or two old, but I have three reasons for sharing it here today:

1. It's unbelievable.
2. I don't have much else to say today.
3. It's a wonderful example of how a good appreciation for grammar and spelling could have saved the day.

Tomorrow I'm going to bitch about the people in my neighborhood, so be thankul for today before it's over.

Original article came from

Officials in Hickman, KY, released a prisoner from a state facility after receiving a phony fax that ordered the man be freed, and didn't catch the mistake for nearly two weeks.

Timothy Rouse, 19, is charged with beating an elderly western Kentucky man and was at the Kentucky Correctional & Psychiatric Center in La Grange for a mental evaluation. He was released from that facility on April 6 after officials received the fake court order.

It contained grammatical errors, was not typed on letterhead and was faxed from a local grocery store. The fax falsely claimed that the Kentucky Supreme Court "demanded" Rouse be released.

Lexington police arrested Rouse at his mother's home Thursday evening.

"It's outrageous that it happened," Fulton County Attorney Rick Major said. "I'm just glad nobody got hurt because he's dangerous."

Police are still investigating who faxed it. Attorney Carlos Moran, who is representing Rouse, declined to comment.

Prison officials did not notice that the fax came from the grocery store because policies in place did not require checking the source of a faxed order, said the LaGrange facility's director, Greg Taylor.

"It's not part of a routine check, but certainly, in hindsight, that would perhaps have caused somebody to ask a question," he said. He added that misspellings on orders are common.

© 2007 The Associated Press.


Still not a cat blog

Nothing blogworthy here lately.

TH is at work. So far I have been watching movies on t.v. all day. That, and watching Pookie play in this thing. It's quite adorable. His quest to befriend Edna St. Vincent McBitch continues. He keeps managing to get closer and closer to her without getting slapped, so I think he's making progress...






While she has finally stopped taking every opportunity to kick his ass, she still hasn't quite accepted him.


Hey, there's nothing else going on in my life right now. Unless you want to hear about how that high fiber diet's working...

Friday, May 11, 2007 

A long way to go

Last night, The Husband and I decided to go for a walk. It was 10:40 at night, but we decided we were never going to do it if it had to be done during the day, what with his late night work schedule and all. So we went to the park, which happens to be right behind the police station. It is also very well lit, and has a 1/4 mile walking track all the way around it. It doesn't get much safer, as far as walking around a park in the middle of the night goes.

We walked eight laps, which was two miles. I felt like I could've gone further, but I was developing a blister on the bottom of my foot. This despite the fact that I was wearing my New Balance walking shoes with the rollbar heel that I got off Ebay and suspect are fake.

That doctor yesterday told me I need to be walking 5 miles per day, 5 days of the week. I have been doing about 2 miles per day, 3 days of the week. Hey, I only have to increase my walking five-fold!

I'm gonna need some new shoes.

Thursday, May 10, 2007 

No Uranus Jokes. I promise.

My appointment with the gastroenterologist was today, and so was my final exam. I'll start with the butt doctor.

As I have said, I was afraid that he was going to tell me he needed to stick a camera up my butt to find out what was wrong, and I went to this appointment mentally prepared for him to tell me to come back in two weeks for said butt invasion. Fortunately, he didn't. Yet.

This doctor, Dr. Greenwold, is at least 70 years old, and he did things a little differently than I'm used to. What I'm used to is being lead into an exam room by a nurse who then takes my blood pressure, temperature, weight, and pulse without smiling or speaking, then walks out saying, "He'll be right in," as she slams my chart into the plastic box on the door and slams the door behind her. She's always a liar, too, because he never comes right in. It's always at least another 30 minutes of waiting. When he does come in, he asks what's wrong, and I'm able to get half a sentence out before he has already taken a stab at diagnosing me and handed me a prescription for something. If I need any explanation, I have to tackle him to the ground and beat it out of him before he swooshes right out the door in his long lab coat, forty seconds after he walked in.

Dr. Greenwold is way better than that. First, the friendly nurse came in and did all the stuff the bitchy nurses do, except that she smiled and made conversation and didn't rush. She even let me take my shoes off to be weighed, and according to their scale I am about 10 pounds lighter today than I was at the doctor this past Saturday, a whopping five days ago. My shoes don't weigh 10 pounds, and I certainly haven't lost 10 pounds this week. The stupid nurse from last week was in a hurry and didn't give the thing time to stop wobbling before she overestimated my weight and committed the insult to paper with permanent ink. After Nurse Friendly finished telling me that all of my vitals were normal, she said that Dr. Greenwold would look at my medical history, and that I would then meet with him in his office. I waited in the exam room for him to review my stuff.

About ten minutes after the nurse left, a tall, old man came to the door and introduced himself. He took me across the hallway to his cushy office, and I sat in a chair right next to his desk. He spent about thirty minutes asking me questions about my semicolon and the pain that goes with it, then he spent more time asking me about my diet. His voice was wobbly in that old man way, and he spoke very slowly and deliberately. It was comforting.

Well, in the end he decided that my colon hates me because I don't love it enough, or something, and he thinks the pain is due to spasms. He gave me a list of things that I have to eat every day, like three slices of wheat bread, two pieces of fruit, three servings of veggies, and some fiber supplement that I haven't tried yet but am certain is going to taste like chalk. I have to go back in a month, and if the pain is gone, I'm good to go. If not, then he's going to give me some medicine to stop the spasms. I was relieved that the prospect of an anal probe wasn't even discussed as a future possibility. After all that, he finally examined me in an exam room, but there wasn't much to it. Just some mashing and pressing and listening. The usual.

As I was leaving, I thought to myself This guy is worth every penny. Then I got the total. Are you ready? The total charge is $789.76.

Granted, he did spend a lot of time with me instead of pushing me through like a head of cattle and stamping some generic diagnosis down and then moving on to the next cow, but $800??? That's with no tests, labs, etc. Thank God we have insurance. I think I should've become a doctor.

As for the final exam, there's not much to say. I had to write ten pages by hand, and I have never felt a hand cramp so severe. By the time I was done, some of my letters didn't look like letters. It was like my hand just started doing what it wanted to do. I got through it. My class is over. I expect to get my grade in a week or two.

When I get my A in the mail and my phone call about the job, my anus and I can breathe a collective sigh of relief.


Love? Check. Happiness? Check. Integrity? Integrity? Hey, has anyone seen Integrity?

Wednesday, May 09, 2007 

"Unemployment is capitalism's way of getting you to plant a garden."

Orson Scott Card said that. I think it's true, even though he's not only a mormon, but also a science fiction writer. (I'm sure the two are completely unrelated.)

I hate how this blog automatically capitalizes the first letter of every word, even the articles and tiny words that aren't supposed to be capitalized. That's not a very good feature for a grammar nazi's blog, although I am only a grammar nazi part-time these days.

Our house is trying to kill us again. Today it's the yard. It's filled with pine cones, which dull the blade on the gigantic lawn mower, so AH insists on going around the entire yard-- all 3 acres of it-- with a garbage bag and picking up each pine cone. Even though it sounds like a lot more work, I think I'd much rather live on 20 or 40 acres than 3, because then we could justify using a bush hog and having some cattle, I wouldn't have to pick up pine cones. Thank goodness I bought this thing, or my back would be killing me right now. I picked up pine cones yesterday, I picked up pine cones the day before, and I picked up pine cones today. It's finally done-- mostly. Before I picked up pine cones, I pulled weeds from the flower beds and from between the shrubs around the house. It sucked slightly. Then I got the Round-Up and sprayed the ones that wouldn't surrender, and tomorrow I'm going to go out there and point and laugh at their dead, crispy bodies. After that I picked up all the mulch that the rain washed out of the beds and onto the walkway. It filled up a huge bucket. The beds are migrating, it seems.

After a brief (and completely juvenile) tiff about who had done more work, AH and I stuck our tongues out at each other, I stomped into the house, and he began mowing the pine cone free lawn. Not to be outdone in the duty department, I cleaned and cooked and washed dishes, like a good wife. After a few hours, I decided to take him a cold bottle of water as a peace offering, and now we're back to marital bliss.

Now where's my freakin' ribbon?

I am still waiting to hear back on a job that I'm hoping to get. They interviewed at least a dozen people for it, but I'm still hopeful. I want it. Bad. At this point, I have done everything I can do, and all that's left is waiting. And praying. And biting my fingernails, chewing the flesh from the insides of my cheeks, and lying in bed awake for two hours before finally falling asleep at night. I hate job hunting. More than that, I hate the waiting to hear back once you've been interviewed and jumped through all the hoops.

Monday, May 07, 2007 

The Rainy Day and the Endangered Anus

It rained today, but not before I got all of TH's scrubs hung out on the line and forgot them. (He insists that they will shrink if I dry them.) I hung them out this morning, and should have brought them in this afternoon, but I forgot. Actually, I walked right past them twice and thought yeah yeah in a minute, so I don't know if that qualifies as forgetting, but for the sake of not getting bitched at for being irresponsible, I'm saying I forgot.

We were in the bedroom relaxing and uh..talking when I noticed that a light rain was falling. I just thought it was fabulous, because who doesn't like to be in bed smooching with their honey while a light rain is falling? A few minutes later, the rain realllly started pouring. And no, that is not meant as a metaphor. I mean the rain in the sky came down to the earth, and hard. TH's eyes got big, and he said, in a very alarmed tone, "Is it raining!?" Thinking that he was just really tense, (and that I had the antidote) I said, "Yeah, isn't it nice?" He screeched, "The clothes! My work clothes! Those are all the work clothes I have for tomorrow! There's no way to get them dry now!" And my head hit the pillow of disappointment as he jumped up and ran out of the room to take care of his clothes.

Thanks a lot, RAIN!

I have a tendency to get all the chores in the house done, then not do them again for three weeks. I'm still used to the days of having roommates, when you did a chore one time and then waited until everyone else had done it, then did it again. The point is that between my blurred sense of reality and that throat bug that knocked me out for two days and then turned into an ear infection (which I still have, by the way) our laundry really got piled up. In the last 2 days, I have done approximately 10 loads. How two people can generate so much laundry is beyond me. I think the carpets actually excrete dirty laundry. It seems to appear out of nowhere, no matter how much of it I have done. On top of all that, I have also vacuumed the hell out of this house with my spiffy new Eureka Boss SmartVac 4870, which arrived yesterday.

My point is...

Well, maybe I don't really have one tonight. Maybe the point is that my husband worries too much. Maybe it's that the rain's timing was a bitch. Maybe the point is that I suck as a housewife. Maybe I just feel worthless and bitter, because my house is always dirty regardless of whether I try to keep it clean, even though doing that one thing is the one thing I'm supposed to be doing. I mean, my kitchen floor is already dirty and I really cleaned it good yesterday, I mean I put my back into it, you know? You could've eaten off of it. I wouldn't recommend it, but if you had to, it would probably have been okay. And now it's dirty, and when I pointed it out, TH said, "That's how it goes."

Thanks, TH. Drop some more crumbs, then hand me that cast iron skillet and turn around, umkay?

I'm not cut out for this housewife stuff. I'm not. If I had a young'un, I think it would be worth it. I'd like to stay home for a few years with my young'uns. But as far as having the upkeep of the house as my one and only responsibility? No thank you. And no thank you on having the one exciting moment of my day interrupted because I suck at staying on top of it.

I'm bored.

I might be having something stuck up my anus on Thursday, so that should liven things up! That's right. My semicolon has really been giving me trouble. I had to go to the doctor yesterday because of my ear infection, so I decided to bring it up. Keep in mind that I started having problems 2 years ago. It took a full year for anyone to do a CT scan, and since then I've continued having pain almost every day, not to mention bouts of explosive diarrhea, even though I follow instructions that are supposed to prevent said pain and power-pooping. When I go to the doctor for it, they give me some non-solution solution, like "Take this antibiotic," which doesn't really help if you have giant tears in the colon, if you know what I'm saying. So I was very firm with the doctor yesterday, and I told him I had been dealing with it for two years and that I know that it's something more serious than what they've said, because if I only had what they said I had wouldn't be having problems constantly. So I asked him to refer me to a gastroenterologist. Did I spell that right? I'm not looking it up. I'd rather write three sentences about how it might be misspelled than stop typing to check. I'm on a roll.

So I finally have an appointment with a specialist who should be able to edit my semicolon once and for all, I hope. I just don't see how they can come up with a proper diagnosis without sticking a camera up my ass, frankly. When I first found out all this trouble was indeed my colon, I was scared to death of the thought of having something stuck up there, but it never happened. At this point, I welcome it. They can hang a flagpole from it for an afternoon as long as I don't feel it and it gets me one step closer to not having constant pain and explosive diarrhea.

Okay, now that I've written about at least 3 ultra-personal things to strangers and semi-strangers, I can rest. Goodnight, my loyal reader(s).

Sunday, May 06, 2007 

Gene Pool Puddle

ODD Six legged Calf

Dammit, Billy Bob! I thowt I toe jew ta keep Sammy Ray away from dem cows!

Saturday, May 05, 2007 

I think, therefore I blog. I think. Wait. Repeat the question?

Hey look! I got an award! And you can bet it's going in the trophy case sidebar, too. Hey! I ain't got m'self very established in this here new place yet, people! I'm still acquiring furniture and doo-dads to spruce it up. Cut me some slack.

Hillbilly Mom has bestowed upon me the Thinking Blogger Award.


That's right. I made someone think. Better yet, I made Hillbilly Mom think, and that's pretty good because you know her brain is fit from all that trivia.

Thanks, Hillbilly Mom. I'm honored someone thinks I'm a thinker. Or a think-inducer. Perhaps this can inspire me to write semi-thoughtful things in the near future. Lately, I have been very tempted to write about farts and cat turds. There was even a post on constipation that got scrapped. Anyway.

I'm now supposed to bestow the Thinking Blogger Award on five bloggers who make me think. I'm only giving it to three people, because there are only about five on my blogroll right now. Here goes.

1. Legless in Perpetuum. Rachel was the very first person ever to comment on my first blog, back in my basement days. She and I encouraged each other through the sometimes hopelessly difficult job hunt that lib arts majors must endure. I won a bet, and she actually mailed me a six-pack of Australian beer. Good stuff, by the way, even though mailing alcohol in glass bottles halfway around the globe probably broke a law or two, not to mention a bottle or three. She maintains a good sense of humor and one of the most popular blogs around, while also managing to not only be in the know about political matters, but also to have something thoughtful and reasonable to say about them. I, on the other hand, recently posted a picture of a dog hiking his leg on a Hillary '08 poster, and that is just about all the political commentary you're getting around these parts. So Legless in Perpetuum wins the Thinking Blogger Award for making me think, even though it sometimes hurts.

2. Hillbilly Mansion. That's right. And yes, I know that Hillbilly Mom won't be repeating this meme again. Hillbilly Mom makes me think. Mostly about meth heads, hundred dollar cars, and ghosts in the basement, but still. Oh, and ostensibly fictional balding male teachers who stand in doorways and pine for unnamed female teachers while contemplating whether or not he can....please her. Exercise for the brain.

3. Redneck Diva. Okay, the diva's been on my blogroll for a long time, but I recently resumed going to read there on a regular basis, and it turns out we have a lot in common. Okay, I don't have kids to write about (although I seriously can't wait to have them, if only for the blogging material) and I'm not as bold as she is. (She once blogged about having "super loud the kids are out of the house sex," or something to that effect.) We do both wear absolutely enormous panties. I'm sure that's not where our likenesses end, but this is about what blogs make me THINK, people, and I think I feel like giving it to her, so suck it.

So there. Three. If my blogroll were beefier, I'd give you five, but it's not, so I didn't.

In case you want to give this award to your favorites, these are the rules, as they were passed on to me from the Queen of Hillmomba:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to five blogs that make you think.
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme.
3. Optional: Proudly display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn’t fit your blog).

Thursday, May 03, 2007 

Cornered by Crazy

I have another inner ear infection. I have had a few dizzy spells over the last 3 days. Since that paper was due tonight, I didn't have time to feel sorry for myself, or take Meclizine and go to sleep, which is what I really wanted to do.

Last night I stayed up until about 3:30 a.m., and I was actively working on the paper from about 3:00 p.m. until then, with a small break when TH got home at 1 a.m. Since I was drinking coffee most of that time, I was awake in bed for at least an hour after that. My heart was doing that excessively loud and fast pounding thing, and I felt like I was coming out of my skin. I contemplated getting up and trying to work some more, but it was one of those deals where I was too wired to fall asleep, but too tired to think clearly. Every time I attempt to use caffeine to allow myself to work longer, I remember that not only does it not work, but it also makes rest impossible and makes you miserable.

Advance planning is the only way to go. I'm going to make a smart old woman, as my dad would say.

Anyway, I fell asleep sometime before 5 a.m., and woke up around 10 today. I immediately started working on the paper, and I worked on it nonstop until 5 p.m., then rushed to get to class by 5:30. When I walked in, I expected to see the professor standing there going on and on and on some more in taking the roll, which takes a minimum of 45 minutes every week. He wasn't there. His wife died. She died last week during our class, and he found her when he got home that night.

How much sadder does it get than that? You're married to someone for 50 years, and you come home from work and find him or her dead. God help him. I can't even imagine living without TH now, and we've only been together for 5 years. Add another 45+ years to that, and then jerk it away? What else is there, after all that time?

I suppose learning that his wife had been ill for some time put things into perspective. It explains why he lets class out 2 hours early every week, for example. It might also explain why he's been kind of a grump the last 5 or 6 weeks. Maybe he knew. Even if he didn't, it goes without saying that he had plenty of heavy stuff to think about besides whether his classes were going well.

Professor or no professor, I got my paper turned in on time. It was 24 pages total. We were required to write a dedication with our paper, which I thought was so stupid that I considered leaving it out. At the last minute, I thought of a good dedication. Here goes: This paper is dedicated to the many elementary and high school teachers who endured my juvenile disrespect while they worked without recognition or complaint to equip me with the education that I did not deserve, and to my parents, who always took the teacher's side.

Now that's a good dedication, if I do say so mahsef, even though we are talking about a crappy paper that is never going to be read again. I doubt the dedicatees give a damn.

The class was slightly less boring than usual because there were two Irish guys there to speak about education in Ireland. Their accents were fabulous, and I learned that it's absolutely true that Irish people talk with their hands. I do that, and someone once told me the joke What do you call an Irishman with no hands? Speech impaired. Anyway, their presentation lasted only one hour and when it was over the prof covering the class tonight was under the impression that we wanted to hear him talk. We didn't. It was clear that everyone was exhausted and just wanted to turn the thing in, get the last presentation out of the way, and get the hell out of there. The final is next week.

On my way home, I decided that I didn't want to go home. I caught a glimpse of a friend's truck outside of a local restaurant/bar, so I went inside, thinking that I could sit and chat for a half hour or so before coming home, since I had been pretty much locked in here for the last 48 hours. As soon as I walked in, my friend was walking out. Worse yet, the only person in their group who was not leaving was a crazy woman, and she trapped me fair and square. I mean my timing could not have been worse, and she cornered me.

Have you ever met one of those people who is so crazy that they talk to you when you are actively ignoring them, and intentionally putting out "go the hell away" signals? One of those people who you can tell have spent years in therapy in some point, but didn't get the crazy out? It's like she went to therapy for long enough that she learned all the lingo, and she even speaks in a therapy session-esque rhythm, but she's still nucking futs. They talk regardless of whether you're listening. They just walk up and sit down and fucking get right to it like the clock is ticking and they've got fifty minutes and they'd better get to the source of all their life's problems before the bell sounds. They just start going on about their personal issues-- very personal issues. When you try to back up or give signals that you need some space, they come closer. They put their hands on you. That kind of crazy. Inescapable crazy. The kind of person who talks so incessantly that there is NO chance for you to do the wrap it up routine that lets them know you're ready to leave. You just have to stand up, grab your keys, and walk off, leaving them there mid-sentence, because as inappropriate as it sounds, that's the only way out.

And to think I went there to relax. As soon as I saw her, I knew I was trapped, and I immediately wished I had just come straight home. The only reason I escaped (after about 20 of the longest minutes of my life) was because some unsuspecting young women walked up and distracted her for a minute. I stood up, left my Diet Coke there on the table, and snuck out. I told the girls "good luck" as I walked by. They didn't get it then. I'm guessing they get it now.

My head hurts. Time for that Meclizine.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007 

It's the Freudiest!

I am on page 3 of a 20 page research paper, which is due tomorrow, but I had to take a quick break to post this.

Do you ever see a word on a page or a sign, and do a double take because your brain confused it with another word? That happens to me a lot, and it's usually a case of my dirty mind taking over and confusing something like "so long" with "schlong," or, "princess" with "penises," for example.

A few minutes ago I took a break to have a quick dinner, if you call macaroni and cheese and a baked pork chop dinner. I call it fast food without the fast food. Anyway, this box was setting on the counter while I was diligently stirring the macaroni noodles.


I had to do a double take, because when I glanced at it, I thought "cheesiest" was "obesiest."

This Freudian moment has nothing to do with the fact that I promised myself just last night that I'd be more diligent about eating healthy foods, and swore that I finally meant it and intended to follow through. Nah, nothing to do with that at all.

Hey, look! A post with no mention of cats!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007 

The Old Geezer in the Appliance Department

I've been in need of a new vacuum cleaner for some time now. Ours is on its way out. First it started spitting, then it refused to suck at all. This won't do.

AH doesn't mind spending money on things that he wants, like a motorcycle helmet with flames painted on it, but he's uptight about giving me money for a vacuum. At the same time, we've both been sneezing our heads off. As a matter of fact, it's 2:00 p.m. right now and AH is in bed asleep because he took Benadryl to combat his sneezing. That could be because our carpet got wet during Katrina and stilllllll hasn't been replaced (long story, but if you've been around here a while you've probably heard it anyway) and we're probably breathing mold spores from that. Or it could be because the vacuum cleaner blows and the carpet we do have is covered in dust and cat hair and who knows what else.

Today I was looking at the carpet in the living room and watching AH sneeze, and I decided to put my foot down. "We're getting a new vacuum cleaner, like, today."
"Okay," AH said, no doubt believing I would back off if he ignored me.

I got online and did some quick research to see what would be the best deal. I would love to have one of those Dysons that everyone's raving about, but I'm not spending $500 on a vacuum cleaner in this lifetime. Instead, I came up with the Eureka Boss SmartVac 4870GZ. I announced that I was taking the checkbook and going to Sears to get it, and off I went.

When I got to the appliance department, there was an old couple there looking at a different vacuum cleaner, and the old man was raising hell because nobody was around to help him. He finally said, well above normal speaking volume, "I'm about to pick the summumabitch up and walk out with it, and we'll see if I get someone's attention then!" Two seconds later, a man hopped on over to help the old geezer, explaining that he didn't see him come in.

The old man was impossible to deal with, and while I stood there waiting I contemplated the luck of having walked in right behind this guy, and wondered how long I would have to wait for him to release his grip on the salesman's balls. At least by the time he got done with him, I'd be the dream customer.

First, he was pissed that nobody would help him. Then he got mad because the man told him the vacuum cleaner he wanted was not in stock and had to be ordered. Next, he had to raise hell because he was told that he could not buy the demo off the floor. Finally, the Sears employee offered to go search through the stockroom to make sure there wasn't one available. We never saw him again. A second guy eventually wandered over and asked if he could help me. I ended up having to order mine too, and it'll be here Friday. I'm sure the old people did the same thing, assuming the sales guy ever showed back up from "looking in the stockroom." I worked enough crappy retail jobs to know that when a customer is giving you hell, you offer to go look in the stockroom, spend the next 15 minutes chain smoking, then come back and tell them the same thing you told them before you did them that big favor of going to double check.

I can't wait to get old. I'm going to fart in public, and bitch about everything. I'm going to say things about "the blacks" that aren't quite bad enough to be considered all out racist, but questionable enough to make all the young white people uncomfortable. (That happened to me 3 days ago, by the way. I'll tell you about it tomorrow.) I'm going to tell the whippersnappers how much better things were in my day, and I'm damn sure going to raise hell when I can't get my vacuum cleaner the same day.

Pookie's been particularly evil today. He slept in the laundry room last night, just as I promised he would after pissing on my bed yesterday. This morning I got up and went to free him from his prison. He made his way directly to the bed, and squatted and peed. I have no idea why he did that, but I have a feeling it was pure revenge. If he does it again, he'll be living outside. When he's not pissing on something, he's actually pretty cute. He'll do something adorable, like play with the spring behind the door...


...or curl up and lay down on top of my foot. That's so disarming that I can forget how evil he is. Then he goes and does something like this, and it all comes back to me:


Yeah. If you click on the pic, you can really see the claws digging into the leg and the evil stare. Your blood tastes like ice cream to the Pookie!

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